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Love Study: Brain Reacts To Heartbreak Same As Physical Pain

Love hurts, and that is not just a saying for the broken hearted. Heartbreak is a very strange distress. It is exquisitely painful, and yet we cannot find an injury on our body. New research finds that when you reminisce about the one that got away, the brain actually triggers sensations that you also feel in times of “real” physical pain, making heartbreak truly, physically painful to add to the emotional distress it sometimes causes.

Heartbreak is like one big emotional pain but it also seems to spark off hundreds of other emotions. We hate the feeling of heartbreak, and yet we find ourselves compelled to go over and over memories, ideas or fantasies which make the feeling worse.

Edward E. Smith, director of cognitive neuroscience at Columbia University explains:

“This tells us how serious rejection can be sometimes. When people are saying ‘I really feel in pain about this breakup,’ you don’t want to trivialize it and dismiss it by saying ‘It’s all in your mind.’ Our ultimate goal is to see what kind of therapeutic approach might be useful in relieving the pain of rejection. From everyday experience, rejection seems to be one of the most painful things we experience. It seems the feelings of rejection can be sustained even longer than being angry.”

Forty people analyzed from New York City and all of whom felt “intensely rejected,” took part in the study. While participants were told to look at photos, including photos of their friends (they were directed to think positive thoughts about them), and photos of their exes (they were directed to think about their breakup), their brains were scanned for changes in activity. The participants also underwent brain scans as they felt pain on their forearms similar to the feeling of holding a hot cup of coffee in comparison. Several of the same areas of the brain became active when the participants felt either physical pain or emotional pain.

The research shows that rejection appears to be in a class by itself in terms of its similarity to physical pain. Future research could examine how emotional pain due to rejection affects how people feel physical pain.

Here are some tips that may help you get over the pain:

  • Breathe. All you can do is survive this first and difficult day. Take one day at a time. Give yourself permission to mourn. Call in sick at work, sleep all day, eat too much ice cream, sob.
  • Congratulate yourself for being human: It is only when you open yourself to love that your heart can break. Develop and repeat a helpful mantra to get you through the initial shock and pain, such as “This too shall pass” or “I will survive.”
  • Reach out to a close friend or family member. It helps to share your thoughts with others. Watch a movie to distract yourself. Choose a comedy that has cheered you up in the past. Or watch a movie that’s guaranteed to make you sob–it may surprise you how good that feels.
  • Surround yourself with friends. This may mean reaching out to people you fell out of touch with during the relationship. Make lists to help you regain your confidence and identity: a list of your friends, of things you like, of what you want to accomplish in the next decade. Spoil yourself: Get a new hairstyle, have a spa day or go shopping. Resist the urge to call your ex.
  • Assess the experience. Have you learned anything about yourself? Does the experience make you more empathetic to others who’ve suffered a hardship? Begin an activity that will fill your time, distract your mind and rebuild your confidence. Train for a marathon, take up yoga or learn a new language. Resist the urge to call your ex. Volunteer your time at a local homeless shelter, soup kitchen or tutoring center. It will take your mind off your own woes and keep your suffering in perspective.
  • Force yourself to go on dates. You’ll be surprised to discover that your heart can still flutter over someone. It’s part of the healing process.
  • Consult a psychiatrist if you are experiencing symptoms of depression, such as lack of appetite, insomnia or too much sleeping, low self-esteem, and an inability to concentrate or carry out routine tasks. Ask a friend or physician to recommend one who is experienced in treating depression.
  • Remember that healing is a process that takes time. Expect waves of sadness, anger, guilt or fear even after you think you are over it. Give your heart time to heal.
  • Compartmentalize the experience in your memory: “My heart was broken once. It really hurt and I’m glad it’s over.”

As one popular quote goes, “Love is like falling down… in the end you’re left hurt, scarred, and with a memory of it forever.”

www.healingpowerhour.com

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Ten Health Benefits of Watermelon

The Health Benefits of Watermelon

Watermelon is a natural source of most powerful antioxidants provided by nature. It is a good source of the antioxidant vitamins C and A to protect us from diseases. It reduces the risk of dehydration.

Summer and watermelon are inseparable. Watermelons are found almost everywhere in the world. Although we can find watermelons in our markets throughout the year, the season for watermelon is the summer when they are sweet and of the best quality. No other fruit can we find so crunchy and thirst quenching like watermelon.

HEALTH BENEFITS OF WATERMELON

  1. The health benefits of watermelon are really great. No matter how it is sliced, it is packed with some of the most important antioxidants found in nature.
  2. It is an excellent source of vitamin C and a very good source of vitamin A, particularly through its concentration of beta-carotene.
  3. The beautiful red watermelon is also a source of the potent carotene antioxidant which is called lycopene. These antioxidants travel throughout the body neutralizing free radicals. Free radicals are substances in the body that can cause much damage to us. They are able to oxidize cholesterol, making it stick to blood vessel walls and thicken them which can lead to hearty attack or stroke. The lycopene which gives fruits the attractive red color that we find in watermelon can help reduce the risks of prostate cancer.
  4. It is a surprising fact that watermelon is the only fruit that contains higher concentrations of lycopene than any other fresh fruit or vegetable.
  5. Watermelon is a fruit that is rich in electrolytes sodium and potassium that we lose through our perspiration.
  6. Watermelon is rich in the B vitamins necessary for energy production. Food experts recommend watermelon as a very good source of vitamin B6 and a good source of vitamin B1 and magnesium. Because of its higher water content approximately ninety percent and calorie value it is ranked more valuable than other fruits.
  7. Watermelon has a special cooling effect and is exceptionally high in citrulline, an amino acid that our bodies use to make another amino acid, arginine, which is used in the urea cycle to remove ammonia from the body.
  8. The antioxidants help reducing the severity of asthma. It also reduces the risk of colon cancer, asthma, heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and prostate cancer.
  9. Watermelon is a good source of thiamin, potassium and magnesium which protect our body from so many diseases.
  10. Watermelon is fat free but helps energy production. It protects against macular degeneration.
  11. Watermelon is also considered a natural viagra. Check our recent entry about this subject by clicking here on this link. https://docakilah.wordpress.com/2011/06/24/watermelon-a-natural-viagra/
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Akilah M. El, N.D. is a Naturopathic Doctor and certified Master Herbalist with a private practice in Atlanta Georgia and Berlin Germany. Join Dr Akilah El on Facebook and Twitter

For More Health Tips Like This Check Out Our Health Tips Page

The Health Benefits of Mangoes

The Health Benefits of Mangoes

Mangoes are abundant during the summer season. Mango is widely known as the “king of fruit”, and that is not without a purpose. It is regarded as a valuable item of diet and a household remedy. It is rich in amino acids, vitamin C and E, flavonoids, beta carotene, niacin, calcium, iron, magnesium and potassium

About 4000 BC ago, the wild mango originated in the foothills of the Himalayas of India and Burma, and about 40 to 60% of these trees still grow in India and Southeast Asia. Also known as Mangifera Indica, this exotic fruit belongs to the family of Anacardiaceae. Though native to Southern and Southeast Asia, the fruit is now also grown in Central and South America, Africa and the Arabian Peninsula also. Today there are over 1,000 different varieties of mangos throughout the world.

Below are the numerous health and nutrition benefits of eating mangoes:

  1. Anti cancer: The phenols in mangoes, such as quercetin, isoquercitrin, astragalin, fisetin, gallic acid and methylgallat, as well as the abundant enzymes, have cancer-preventing capacities. Mango is also high in a soluble dietary fiber known as pectin. Scientist have identified a strong link between eating lots of fiber and a lower risk of cancers of the gastrointestinal tract. A cup of sliced mangoes (around 165 gram) contain 76 percent of the needed daily value of vitamin C, a potent antioxidant which helps protect cells from free radical damage and reduces risk of cancer.
  2. Eye health: One cup of sliced mangoes supplies 25 percent of the needed daily value of vitamin A, which promotes good eyesight. Eating mangoes regularly prevents night blindness, refractive errors, dryness of the eyes, softening of the cornea, itching and burning in the eyes.
  3. Helps in digestion: Mangoes contain digestive enzymes that help break down proteins and aid digestion. It is also valuable to combat acidity and poor digestion because of an enzyme found in the fruit which soothes the stomach. Due to the high amounts of fiber found in mango, it can be a helpful in keeping you regular, thereby helping or preventing constipation.In India, a decoction of the mango peel is given to people with inflammation of the stomach mucus membranes. Eating one or two small tender mangoes in which the seed is not fully formed with salt and honey is found to be very effective medicine for summer diarrhoea, dysentery, piles, morning sickness, chronic dyspepsia, indigestion and constipation.
  4. Benefits to skin: Mango is effective in relieving clogged pores of the skin. What this means is that people who suffer from acne, which is caused by clogged pores, will benefit from mango. Just remove the mango pulp and apply it on your skin for about 10 minutes before washing it. Eating mango regularly makes the complexion fair and the skin soft and shining.
  5. Helps in diabetes: Mango leaves help normalize insulin levels in the blood. Boil a few mango leaves in water and allow it to saturate through the night. Consume the filtered decoction in the morning for diabetic home remedy. The glycemic index of mango is low, ranging between 41-60. So, mango does not have any significant effect in increasing blood sugar levels.
  6. For better sex: The Vitamin E that is abundantly present in mangoes helps to regulate sex hormones and boosts sex drive.
  7. Beneficial for anemia: Mangoes are beneficial for pregnant women and individuals suffering from anemia because of their iron content. Also, vitamin C in the mango enhances the absorption of iron from vegetable food like rice. Generally women after menopause become weak and they should take mangoes and other fruits rich in iron.
  8. Boost memory: Mangoes are useful to children who lack concentration in studies as it contains Glutamine acid which is good to boost memory and keep cells active.
  9. Avoid heat stroke: Unripe mangoes, a rich source of pectin, when steamed and juiced with cumin (jeera), rock salt and sugar, provide an excellent remedy for heat stroke and heat exhaustion in summer.
  10. Weight gain: Mangoes can be beneficial for people wanting to gain weight. A 100 gram of mango contains about 75 calories. Also, raw mangoes contain starch which get converted into sugar as the fruit ripens. So ripe and sweet mangoes when consumed with milk (rich in protein) can be very helpful in weight gain.

Mangoes can be eaten both raw and ripe. Mangoes are a good source of vitamins and minerals essential for the human body. Always have mangoes in your daily diet as this can benefit your health more than you usual non fiber diet.

Akilah M. El, N.D. is a Naturopathic Doctor and board-certified Master Herbalist with a private practice in Atlanta Georgia and Berlin Germany. Join Dr Akilah El on Facebook and Twitter

For More Health Tips Like This Check Out Our Health Tips Page

Happiness and Optimistic Attitudes Important in Preventing Breast Cancer

Want to lower your risk of getting breast cancer? Recent research in Israel published in the British journal BMC Cancer has given us one more thing to take note of.

Breast Cancer Statistics

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, after non-melanoma skin cancer, cancer of the breast is the next one which most commonly afflicts American women. In 2004 alone, over 185,000 women and more than 1,800 men were diagnosed with the disease, while almost 41,000 women and 362 men actually died because of breast cancer.

Overall, in that year, breast cancer was the number five killer of American women, while being their number two cancer killer. For Hispanic women, breast cancer was also the type of cancer which caused the most deaths.

These numbers do not make for good reading at all. What actually causes breast cancer, and what can we do to stave it off?

Possible Causes of Breast Cancer

Those who are familiar with natural health and healing will know that breast cancer, like all other forms of cancer, can be prevented and even treated using powerful dietary and lifestyle choices, such as consuming enough fiber, exercising regularly, as well as getting enough sunshine and vitamin D.

What is also clear is that breast cancer, again like all forms of cancer, is a multi-factorial disease which needs to be tackled from various angles.

Recent research at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel has given us one more piece of the jigsaw – it seems that happiness and optimistic attitudes may reduce one’s risk of contracting the disease. On the flip side, adverse life events may increase one’s susceptibility to it.

Details of the Study

For the study, 622 women aged between 25 and 45 were asked about their life experiences, and researchers then assessed their levels of optimism, happiness, anxiety and depression before diagnosis. This information was then used to draw a link between life events, psychological distress and the occurrence of breast cancer. Of the participants, 255 were breast cancer patients, while the other 367 had never had cancer.

According to Professor Ronit Peled, the leader of the study, its findings “showed a clear link between outlook and risk of breast cancer, with optimists 25 percent less likely to have developed the disease”.

On the other hand, women who had been through two or more traumatic events in their lives had a 62 percent higher risk of contracting the disease.

The Emotion-Health Connection

Generally speaking, there have been other studies which have drawn a link between positive mental and emotional states and better health. For example, some studies have shown that positive emotions cause the body to produce more immune cells, while negative ones have the effect of suppressing one’s immune system.

But exactly and specifically how attitudes contribute to health, is something which we cannot say we know very well. One theory is that the body’s immune system is influenced by brain chemistry, which is in turn affected by one’s emotional experiences.

“The mechanism in which the central nervous, hormonal and immune systems interact and how behaviour and external events modulate these three systems is not fully understood,” said Peled. “The relationship between happiness and health should be examined in future studies and relevant preventative initiatives should be developed.”

One thing we do know, though, is that emotions such as happiness, stress, anger, anxiety and fear affect the human at a biochemical level. In other words, when our emotions change, our bodies also become chemically different.

What Next For Us

One thing that must be noted about the study is that the women were in fact interviewed after their cancer diagnosis, could very well affect their recollection of their emotional state in the past. When a person is going through a crisis, it would perhaps be a natural tendency to view events in the past more negatively.

Despite this, and although the “how” is still uncertain, Peled is convinced that the link between emotional events and health exists. He feels that “we can carefully say that experiencing more than one severe and/or mild to moderate life event is a risk factor for breast cancer among young women. On the other hand, a general feeling of happiness and optimism can play a protective role”.

According to him, young women who have gone through a number of adverse life events should be identified as being ‘at-risk’ for breast cancer and then be treated as necessary.

Most of us wish to find a specific solution for every health problem. The truth is, many degenerative diseases, and most certainly cancer, have their roots in multiple causes. That being the case, many factors would contribute to one’s risk profile, and a multi-pronged approach in preventing and dealing with the disease is almost always necessary.

What we now know, being happy and optimistic forms are an important part of such an approach.

And if you have been through some tough events in life, you may want to seek some help to address unresolved issues, either through professional counseling or otherwise. Leaving these issues lingering would just be adding more ammunition to the potential cancer time bomb.

Article by: Reuben Chow

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For more tips on relieving emotional stress or depression please visit our Emotional Wellness Page or click on this link http://www.celestialhealing.net/emotional_stress_therapy.htm

10 Foods that Lower Cholesterol

LDL and HDL The bad and The Good Cholesterol

1. Whole grains and oats – a five-year Insulin Resistance Athersclerosis Study showed that people whose diets contain the most whole grains “had the thinnest carotid artery walls and showed the slowest progression in artery wall thickness.”

2. Blueberries – a compound in blueberries (pterostilbene) may help lower cholesterol as effectively as commercial drugs with fewer side effects.

Walnuts lower HDL Levels 3. Nuts – I recommend Pistachios, Walnuts, and Almonds – a Penn State study showed that eating pistachios significantly lowers LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. Research published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology showed eating walnuts or almonds after a high-fat meal might protect your heart. Omega-3 fats and antioxidants in nuts work to reverse the arterial damage caused by saturated fats.

4. Avocados, 5. Olives, and Olive oil – 26 of the 30 grams of fat in an avocado are heart-healthy, unsaturated fats that can increase your levels of HDL cholesterol. The good fats in avocados, olives, and olive oil protect against heart disease and diabetes. Check out the Mediterranean Diet.

6. Flaxseed oil – flaxseed oil can lower blood pressure in men with high cholesterol. In a three-month study of 59 middle-aged men, those who took daily flaxseed oil supplements (with eight grams of the omega-3 fats, alpha-linoleic acid) experienced significantly lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure.

7. 100% cranberry-grape juice – antioxidants in grape juice slow down LDL cholesterol oxidation, and cranberry juice raises HDL or “good” cholesterol.

8. Fish and Fish oil – a study from the Norwegian University of ScienceSalmon Oil to Lower Cholesterol and Technology found that people with type 2 diabetes who consumed high doses of fish oil over nine weeks lowered the size and concentration of several lipoprotein subclasses (cholesterol) in their bodies.

9. Pomegranate juice – a National Academy of Sciences study showed that pomegranate juice reduces cholesterol plaque buildup and increases nitric oxide production (nitric oxide helps reduce arterial plaque).

10. Yogurt with live active cultures (probiotics) – Vicki Koenig, MS, RD, CDN said “several studies have shown that the probiotics Lactobacillus Acidophilus and Lactobacillus Reuteri actually help lower cholesterol. They work by preventing the reabsorption of cholesterol back in to the blood stream.”

You might be a person who is predisposed to high cholesterol, or maybe your diet could use a shape-up. Here are a few key points on cholesterol that I try to focus on:

LDL or “bad” cholesterol deposits itself on the walls of your arteries, forming plaques that make them hard and narrow. HDL or “good” cholesterol removes excess LDL in your blood and brings it to your liver for disposal. The more HDL you consume, the less LDL you’ll have in your blood.

You may need natural herbs to help reduce your cholesterol, but eating a heart-healthy diet and getting exercise are very important. To find out what type of herbs you need to help reduce your cholesterol please check our website By Clicking Here or contact Dr Akilah for a private consultation.