Marijuana may be able to curb opioid dependence for some people with chronic pain, reports new study

(NaturalNews) Opioids are being over prescribed in America, resulting in 47,000 deaths a year, mostly from pain prescription overdoses. The National Institute of Drug Abuse reports that the US makes up 5 percent of the world’s population but devours 75 percent of all prescription…


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Brew up: Peppermint tea and rosemary are found to ‘significantly’ improve long term memory in adults

Herbs and Helpers

Study by experts at Northumbria University focused on 180 participants

Sniffing aroma of rosemary was found to help older adults to remember

Drinking camomile tea was shown to slow memory and attention speed

A study found peppermint tea to significantly improve long term memory in healthy adults

The key to improving the memory could be found in two common herbs – peppermint and rosemary.

Peppermint tea was found to significantly improve long term memory and working memory in healthy adults.

Meanwhile sniffing the aroma of rosemary was found to help older adults to remember to do things, a study found.

But if you want to relax, the same research suggested different remedy from Mother Nature’s garden.

Drinking camomile tea was shown to slow down memory and attention speed – just the thing at bedtime – and the whiff of lavender was also found to have calming effects.

Dr Mark Moss and colleagues from Northumbria University will present their research to the British Psychological Society’s Annual Conference in Nottingham today (WEDS).

A total of 180 participants were randomly allocated to receive a drink of peppermint tea, chamomile tea or hot water.

Before drinking the herb tea they completed questionnaires relating to their mood. After a twenty minute rest, the participants underwent tests of their memory and a range of other cognitive functions and then completed another mood questionnaire.

The peppermint tea significantly improved long term memory, working memory and alertness compared to both chamomile and hot water, the study found.

Meanwhile camomile tea significantly slowed memory and attention speed.

Dr Mark Moss said: ‘It’s interesting to see the contrasting effects on mood and cognition of the two different herbal teas.

‘The enhancing and arousing effects of peppermint and the calming/sedative effects of camomile observed in this study are in keeping with the claimed properties of these herbs and suggest beneficial effects can be drawn from their use.

Lauren Bussey of Northumbria University who studied the effects of rosemary and lavender on prospective memory ‘the ability to remember events that will occur in the future and to remember to complete tasks at particular times.’

She said: ‘It’s critical for everyday functioning. For example: when someone needs to remember to post a letter or to take medication at a particular time.’

The scents of rosemary and lavender oil were diffused in a testing room by use of an aroma stream fan diffuser.

A total of 150 people aged over 65 took part in the study and were randomly allocated to either the rosemary or lavender-scented rooms or another room with no scent.

The study also found that sniffing the aroma of rosemary helped adults to remember to carry out tasks

Once in the room they undertook tests designed to assess their prospective memory functions.

These included remembering to pass on a message at a given time during the procedure, and switching tasks when a specific event occurred.

These tasks represent the two components of prospective memory: time-based – remembering to do something at a specific time such as watch a TV show- and event-based — remembering to do something due to an environmental cue such as posting a letter after seeing a post box.

Analysis of the results showed that the rosemary aroma significantly enhanced prospective memory compared to the room with no aroma.

For mood, rosemary significantly increased alertness and lavender significantly increased calmness and contentedness compared to the no aroma control condition added: ‘These findings support previous research indicating that the aroma of rosemary essential oil can enhance cognitive functioning in healthy adults. This is the first time that similar effects have been demonstrated in the healthy over 65’s.’

Source: Daily Mail

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Is a MINUTE of exercise all you need? Researchers find 60 seconds of hard work in the gym can be as beneficial as a 45 minute endurance session

Herbs and Helpers

Study compared sprint interval training with moderate intensity continuous

Short intense bursts produce similar results to longer, moderate exercises

Team saw improvements to insulin sensitivity and cardiometabolic health

Study suggests 30 minutes total exercise per week with 3 ‘intense’ minutes

‘Not enough time’ is a common excuse for skipping a workout, but it might not be acceptable for much longer.

Researchers have found that short bursts of intense exercise produce similar results to traditional longer-duration workouts.

According to the team at McMaster University, ‘all out’ workouts adding up to just 60 seconds within a 10-minute session can improve insulin sensitivity and cardiorespiratory fitness.

‘Not enough time’ is a common excuse for skipping a workout, but it might not be acceptable for much longer. Researchers have found that short bursts of intense exercise produce similar results to traditional longer-duration workouts

WHAT THE STUDY FOUND

Researchers at McMaster University compared sprint interval training (SIT) with moderate intensity continuous training (MICT).

Participants in the SIT group had a 10 minute workout, including three 20-second ‘all-out’ cycle sprints.

In the MICT workout, participants performed for a total of 50 minutes.

Over the course of 12 weeks, the team found that the two training methods produced similar results.

Current guidelines recommend a person exercise for 150 minutes per week at a moderate intensity.

The new study suggests a total time commitment of 30 minutes per week is equally effective, with just three minutes of intense exercise overall.

The researchers recruited 27 sedentary men to participate in the 12 week study.

Among the participants, some were assigned to sprint interval training (SIT) while others partook in moderate intensity continuous training (MICT).

The team also designated a control group of men who did not exercise.

In the SIT protocol, participants needed just 10 minutes to commit to their workout – three 20-second ‘all-out’ cycle sprints, a 2-minute warm-up and 3-minute cool-down, and two minutes of easy cycling between sprints.

Those exercising through the MICT method performed for a total of 50 minutes, with 45 minutes of continuous cycling at a moderate pace, plus a 2-minute warm-up and 3-minute cool-down.

Each group participated in three weekly sessions of their training style, and the researchers logged the effects on insulin sensitivity and other factors of cardiometabolic health, including cardiorespiratory fitness and skeletal muscle mitochondrial content.

Over the course of 12 weeks, the team found that the two training methods produced similar results, despite a five-fold difference in exercise volume and time commitment.

The findings support the idea that effective workouts can be achieved in just a few minutes, foiling the ‘not enough time’ argument for skipping exercise.

‘This is a very time-efficient workout strategy,’ says Martin Gibala, a professor of kinesiology at McMaster and lead author on the study.

‘Brief bursts of intense exercise are remarkably effective.’

‘Most people cite ‘lack of time’ as the main reason for not being active,’ Gibala says.

Current guidelines recommend a person exercise for 150 minutes per week at a moderate intensity, or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity. But, the new study suggests a total time commitment of 30 minutes per week is equally effective, with just three minutes of intense exercise overall

‘Our study shows that an interval-based approach can be more efficient – you can get health and fitness benefits comparable to the traditional approach, in less time.’

Current guidelines recommend a person exercise for 150 minutes per week at a moderate intensity, or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity.

But, the new study suggests a total time commitment of 30 minutes per week is equally effective, with just three minutes of intense exercise overall.

‘The basic principles apply to many forms of exercise,’ says Gibala.

‘Climbing a few flights of stairs on your lunch hour can provide a quick and effective workout. The health benefits are significant.’

Source: Daily Mail

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Running really does clear your head: Experts explain the link between aerobic exercise and subsequent cognitive clarity and how it makes you sma

Herbs and Helpers

Increases blood flow to the brain’s frontal lobe, linked to clear thinking

Running creates new neurons in brain region for learning and memory

Some say magical things happen when they go for a run.

Runners have reported bursts of clarity, enhanced moods and getting lost in their own thoughts.

Now, experts have revealed how 30 to 40 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise can cure what ails you – by birthing new neurons and increasing blood flow in regions of the brain involved with learning and emotion.

Runners reported bursts of clarity, enhanced moods and getting lost in their own thoughts long enough to confront external tasks. Experts explain 30 to 40 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise can cure what ails you by birthing new neurons and increasing blood flow to regions of the brain involved with learning and emotion

WHAT HAPPENS TO OUR BRAINS WHEN WE RUN?

Runners have reported bursts of clarity, enhanced moods and getting lost in their own thoughts long enough to confront external tasks.

Experts explain how 30 to 40 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise can cure what ails you by birthing new neurons and increasing blood flow to regions of the brain involved with learning and emotion.

Aerobic exercise doesn’t prevent people from people from being sad or depressed, but it does help them recover from the symptoms.

Running also allows us to be mindlessness, which serves four adaptive functions: Self-reflection, creativity, attentional cycling and dishabituation.

It took about 30 years of work in neuroscience to discover the link between aerobic exercise and subsequent cognitive thinking, reports New York Magazine.

And have ‘identified a robust link between aerobic exercise and subsequent cognitive clarity.’

They’ve also debunked the theory that once humans grow older, their brains cannot make new neurons.

Recent studies discovered that after a run, new neurons are formed in the area of the brain associated with learning and memory – the hippocampus.

‘If you are exercising so that you sweat — about 30 to 40 minutes — new brain cells are being born,’ said Karen Postal, president of the American Academy of Clinical Neuropsychology.

‘And it just happens to be in that memory area.’

Other studies have noted an increase of blood flow to the brain’s frontal lobe, which is involved with clear thinking, planning ahead, focus and concentration.

But this region is also associated with emotion regulation, which explains a study from Harvard University study that found ‘acute aerobic exercise did not prevent an increase in sadness response to a subsequent stressor, results suggest that it may help people recovery.

Researchers showed the final scene of the 1979 film ‘The Champ’, which has been noted as a ‘reliable tear jerker’, to a group of 80 participants.

Prior to watching the movie snippet, some of the participants were ask to jog for 30 minutes and the others performed stretching exercises for the same amount of time.

Each subject was given a survey to report how sad the film made them, while the researcher kept them busy for another 15 minutes and then they were asked how they were feeling.

The team found that participants who reported difficulties concentration or felt overwhelmed by their emotions were less affect by their symptoms following 30 minutes of aerobic exercise.

And reported less sadness at the end of the study that those who did not exercise, said researchers.

Besides enhancing one’s clarity and memory, experts have found another benefit of going for a long run ¿ mindlessness. This act serves four broad adaptive functions:Future planning, creativity, attentional cycling and dishabituation

This act includes daydreaming or getting lost in your own thoughts, which they say is important to our well-beings.

Jerome Singer from Yale University and his colleagues suggest that positive constructive daydreaming serves four broad adaptive functions, reads the study published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology.

It assists with future planning, which is increased by a period of self-reflection, creativity for problem solving, attentional cycling that allows you to rotate through different information streams to advance personally meaningful goals and dishabituation that enhances learning through short breaks from external tasks.

Source: Daily Mail

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Acupuncture Plus Herbs Alleviate Cirrhosis And Ascites

Herbs and Helpers

Researchers conclude that acupuncture and herbs normalize liver and kidney function for patients with liver cirrhosis and ascites.

Independent clinical investigations concur that acupuncture and herbs are effective for the treatment of cirrhosis with ascites. One investigation used an integrated treatment protocol consisting of acupuncture, infrared radiation, dietetics, and herbal medicine to achieve positive patient outcomes for patients with end-stage cirrhosis with ascites. The research indicates that integration of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) protocols into the hospital setting benefits end-stage cirrhosis patients.

Acupuncture and herbal medicine are effective for the treatment of end-stage liver cirrhosis and ascites. Researchers from Nanyang City First People’s Hospital (Henan Province, China) tested a TCM protocol using acupuncture, far infrared, herbal intravenous injections, herbal soba noodle soup, and an oral herbal decoction. The combination therapy effectively reduced or eliminated ascites, improved urine volume and appetite, and normalized liver and kidney function.

A total of 95% of patients in the clinical trial achieved optimal positive patient outcomes meeting the following parameters: ascites completely resolved, normal appetite, normal urine color and volume, normal liver and kidney function. The remaining 5% demonstrated: significant reductions in ascites, appetite improvements, reductions of nausea and vomiting, improved urine volume and color, improvements in liver and kidney function. The researchers note that the TCM protocol reduced liver fibrosis and glomerulosclerosis while simultaneously promoting the regeneration of liver cells.

The acupuncture and herbal treatment protocol is as follows. Acupuncture was applied to the following acupoints:

Yinlingquan, SP9 (Yin Mound Spring)
Sanyinjiao, SP6 (Three Yin Intersection)
Taixi, KD3 (Supreme Stream)
Taichong, LV3 (Great Rushing)
Guanyuan, CV4 (Gate of Origin)

A TDP heat lamp (far infrared) was focused on the CV4 acupoint and deqi was stimulated with a manual tonification technique. For the remaining acupuncture points, mild reinforcing and reducing manual acupuncture techniques were applied. Acupuncture was applied once per day, needles were manually stimulated every ten minutes, and total needle retention time was thirty minutes per acupuncture session.

A specialized Hong Hua (safflower) preparation was made for the purposes of intravenous fluid injection. The IV consisted of 40 ml of Hong Hua extract and 250 ml of 5% glucose. The IV was administered to patients once per day. Total treatment time for acupuncture and the Hong Hua IV injection was one month.

An herbal decoction was administered once per day for a total of one month. The herbal soba noodle soup was administered once per day for a total of three days. The decoction was prepared from herbs including:

Qing Hao (wormwood) Herba Artemisiae Apiaceae
Tong Cao (rice paper pith, tetrapanax) Medulla tetrapanacis Papyriferi
Dan Shen (salvia root) Radix salviae Miltiorrhizae
Wang Bu Liu Xing (vaccaria seeds) Semen vaccariae Segetalis
Hou Po (magnolia bark) Cortex magnoliae Officinalis
Si Gua Luo (loofah, luffa)
Sheng Di Huang (Chinese Foxglove Root) Radix rehmanniae Glutinosae
Shi Hu (dendrobium stem) Herba Dendrobii
Che Qian Zi (plantain seed) Semen plantaginis
Dang Gui (Chinese angelica root) Radix angelicae Sinensis
Bai Zhu (white atractylodes rhizome) Rhizoma Atractylodis Macrocephalae
Yu Jin (turmeric tuber) Tuber Curcumae
Da Fu Pi (betel husk) Pericarpium arecae Catechu
Lian Qiao (forsythia fruit) Fructus forsythiae Suspensae
Di Long (earthworm) Lumbricus
Chen Xiang (Chinese eaglewood) Lignum Aquilariae Resinatum

The herbal soba noodle soup consisted of equal portions of the following herbs that were baked and ground into a powder. For each serving, 10 g of herbal powder was mixed with 60 g of soba noodle flour to produce the noodles. The noodles were boiled in water and patients consumed both the water and noodles, once per day, for a total of three days. The herbs for the noodle recipe were

Gan Sui (Kansui Root) Radix Euphorbiae Kansui
Hong Da Ji (Euphorbia) Radix Euphorbiae seu Knoxiae
Yuan Hua (Genkwa Flower), Flos Daphnis Genkwae
Qian Niu Zi (Morning Glory Seeds) Semen Pharbiditis

The research was conducted at Nanyang City First People’s Hospital. The results indicate that the acupuncture plus herbal medicine protocol is an effective treatment for end-stage liver cirrhosis with ascites. The results were published in the Zhejiang Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Kang et al. had similar findings concluding that acupuncture and herbs are effective for the treatment of liver cirrhosis and hepatosplenomegaly. In addition, Du et al. conducted independent research and concluded that acupuncture with moxibustion is effective for the treatment of cirrhosis with ascites.

References:
Chen GX. (2010). Acupuncture combined with medication in treating end-stage liver cirrhosis (with ascites) of liver & spleen blood stasis, 43 cases. Zhejiang Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine. 45 (7).

Kang K & Chai CN.. (2011). Traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture on Gan Da Xin acupoint in treating liver Cirrhosis and hepatosplenomegaly. Medical Innovation of China. 8 (18).

Du XD. (2015). Clinical Observation of 135 Cases of Cirrhosis Ascites Treated with Acupuncture and Medicine. Medical Information. 28 (34).

Source: HealthCMI

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Obamacare bankrupting health insurers, too: Largest insurer loses $1 billion a year, says it's going to drop coverage to save itself from bankruptcy

(NaturalNews) Americans who are suffering rate increases and higher out-of-pocket expenses thanks to the healthcare “reforms” of the “Affordable” Care Act, are about to get hit with even higher costs, after the nation’s largest health insurer announced recently that it was pulling…


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