Showing posts from 2018

Sleepy Driving Is a Serious Health Risk

Sleepy Drivers Involved in 100,000 Crashes a Year

By Robert Preidt
HealthDay Reporter

Driving under the influence and distracted driving are well-known hazards, but few people think twice about getting behind the wheel when feeling drowsy, a sleep expert warns.

"Drivers can reduce the danger by being aware of risk factors and taking precautions," said Dr. Praveen Rudraraju, who directs the Center for Sleep Medicine at Northern Westchester Hospital in Mount Kisco, N.Y.

Each year, nearly 100,000 traffic crashes can be attributed to drowsy driving, including more than 1,500 deaths and over 70,000 injuries, according to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Most drowsy driving accidents occur between midnight and 6 a.m. among drivers who are alone in their vehicle.

Risk factors for drowsy driving include: sleep loss -- even just one hour less than you need; use of sleep aids, anti-anxiety medications or alcohol; driving long hours with few or no breaks, driving alone…

Is It Safe to Use Melatonin?

As Melatonin Use Rises, So Do Safety Concerns

By Lisa Marshall

Isabel Wazny had tried everything to get to sleep.

A lifelong night owl whose sleeplessness worsened as she aged, she sipped chamomile tea, popped antihistamines, and listened to relaxation tapes before bed -- all to no avail. Some days she’d call in sick to work, afraid she couldn’t drive safely. After she retired, she started staying up all night.

“There’s no one to talk to at 3 a.m., and when you sleep all day, it’s hard on your social life. I was getting really depressed,” says Wazny, 63, who lives in British Columbia. When she asked her doctor for sleeping pills, she recommended melatonin instead. Today, her life has turned around.

“I have never had such a regular pattern of sleep in all my adult life,” she says. “I wish I had known about this 30 years ago.”

Wazny is among a growing number of sleep-deprived consumers turning to a once-little-known hormone, often referred to as the “sleep hormone,” for relief for themselves …

Health Hazards Lurking in Your Medicine Cabinet

Cotton SwabsThese can be good for putting on makeup, doing your nails, or any number of odd jobs around the house. But never stick them -- or anything else, for that matter -- into your ear canal. Earwax is a healthy part of your body’s natural defenses, not a sign of illness. If your ear hurts or is itchy, or you feel like there’s something in there, talk to your doctor. Swipe to advance 2/13 AspirinIf members of your family share one medicine cabinet, be careful with this pain reliever. Though it’s safe for most adults, older people who take blood thinners for a heart condition should be careful with aspirin. Taking both can lead to bleeding in the stomach or intestines. And never give it to kids under 2 or older children or teens who are getting over an illness with flu-like symptoms. In those cases, aspirin is linked to a rare but serious condition called Reye’s syndrome, which can cause swelling in your liver or brain. Swipe to advance 3/13 Other Pain RelieversNonsteroidal anti-inflamm…

Hats Warm Heads and Hearts of Kids with Cancer

What started as an entrepreneurship project of two college students, Zachary Quinn and Brian Keller, grew into something much greater. Love Your Melon, founded in 2012, has taken the nation by storm and is supporting thousands of children with cancer each year. For every hat sold, one hat is donated to a child with cancer, helping to alleviate the shame and embarrassment that often accompanies the hair loss resulting from chemotherapy. The two founders view the hats as an icebreaker, providing physical and emotional warmth to the children they hope to get to know better during hospital visits. "We want to inspire communities to make this their own," says Quinn. "And be able to continue it forever."

5 Myths About Weight Loss


Despite all the research in recent years, there are still lingering myths about weight loss – even among experts! I think it’s because the myths sound so good – we want to believe they’re true. But, unfortunately, research just doesn’t back them up. Here are a few of the most popular falsehoods:
Myth: Small changes lead to big results

It’s all about baby steps, right? That sounds good, but will likely just leave you frustrated in your weight loss efforts. Let’s use the well-known, and frequently championed 3500-calorie rule. The theory equates a pound of body fat with 3,500 calories. That means when you burn 3,500 calories through exercise or eat 3,500 fewer calories, or some combination of the two, you’ll lose a pound of body fat. Unfortunately, the reality of the equation doesn’t pan out.

That’s because, after a while, your body will become more efficient and start conserving energy – thus,  working against your weight loss efforts. So, let’s say you walk one…

Can Celery Juice Really Do That?

By Sally Kuzemchak, MS, RD

Right now, social media is awash in photos of people with their celery juice. They claim that the green drink cured them of headaches, belly bloat, skin conditions, and irritable bowel syndrome, purged their bodies of all toxins, and left them with a zen-like feeling of pure bliss.

As a dietitian, I’m psyched that celery is suddenly in the spotlight. It’s got a respectable amount of vitamin C, contains the B vitamin folate, and has a little bit of fiber. It’s crunchy, full of water, and refreshing—and of course is also the perfect vessel for peanut butter.

I’ve no doubt that celery juice helps people feel more hydrated in the morning. And I know from personal experience that a green blender drink is a nice, light way to start the day (though in my case there’s usually some pineapple and banana involved too).

But the mythical claims about celery juice leave me more than a little skeptical. If celery juice did, indeed, flush viruses out of the body and cure migrai…

We Are Still Here

Many indigenous cultures that once existed are now part of past history. However, many of those cultures are indeed alive; examples of resilience and strength. Camille Seaman, an award-winning photographer and Native American, was troubled by her childhood experiences hearing her culture and her people described in the past tense. As she says, "we are still here". With her camera and her purpose, she documents the beauty and self-identity of indigenous people through portraiture. Use her essay as a gateway of discovery into the fascinating ways people the world over are "telling our own stories".

How Good People Can Fight Bias

In her new book, Dolly Chugh provides us with tips for recognizing bias and reducing its effects in ourselves and our workplaces.

By Jill Suttie

Are you against racism? At the same time do you find that your dinner parties consist pretty much of people who look like you? Do you believe workplaces should provide equal opportunities for women—and yet your own office is run exclusively by men?

In her new book, The Person You Mean to Be: How Good People Fight Bias, Dolly Chugh explains why people committed to social inclusion can still suffer from unconscious biases that keep them from achieving their ideals. Through storytelling and a thorough review of the science, Chugh provides us with tips for recognizing bias and reducing its effects in ourselves and our workplaces.

According to Chugh, noticing differences between people is a natural part of being a human being. But, because society so often marginalizes certain groups of people—such as women, transgender people, or the differently able…

How Psychology Can Help You Choose a Great Gift

New research offers some guidance for giving the perfect gift—one that will strengthen your relationships.

By Jill Suttie

The season of gift shopping has arrived. While it’s often a joy to think about giving gifts to the people you love, there’s no doubt that it can be a fraught time, as well: It’s not always easy to figure out the right gift to give. And in looking at how often gifts are returned, it’s clear that we don’t always choose well.

While research has often focused on the benefits of giving for the giver, there are clearly benefits to receivers, as well, even beyond the benefits of receiving something you may want or need. Picking the right kind of gift can increase feelings of appreciation, which in turn help to cement and build important relationships. In fact, that’s often the problem: We forget that the point of a gift is to strengthen a relationship.

Now, some recent research is lending guidance for how to give a gift that maximizes a receiver’s happiness and fosters close…

The Extra-Ordinarily Committed Life of Lynne Twist

"We get to meet a lot of amazing, powerful leaders in our work here at Conscious Company and yet some people stand out even more from that rarified group. Lynne Twist is one of those standouts. She's a rare combination of driven and playful; flexible, yet clear. She brings a laser-sharp focus to living her values. She's relentless in her pursuit of changing the dream of modern society, and it's not all talk -- she's authentic about living it day to day. She sees the core worth of every person she's with, whether they're a billionaire or a poor orphan (and she's spent plenty of time with each). If you're with her, she's with you, and she wants to know you." Read on for an interview with Lynne Twist, where she shares about living a life of commitment, how she started the Pachamama Alliance, the wisdom of the Achuar people, on being a conscious leader, and how facing burnout is an invitation to connect deeply with Source.


These Kids Are Learning How to Have Bipartisan Conversations

A first-of-its-kind workshop trains high school students to have productive disagreements.

By Elizabeth Svoboda

It’s 8:30 in the morning, and I’ve arrived at what looks like a Model UN event. Dozens of high schoolers and their teachers are flowing into the University of Southern California’s Galen Center, dressed in their debating best and bantering in various languages. “Hello, My Name Is” badges bob in the dark conference room like fireflies.

All of these students are members of the Junior State of America (JSA), and they’re used to spirited exchanges about government. But they’re here today to practice a different diplomatic skill: having thoughtful conversations across political boundaries. When workshop leader Brooke Deterline—a cofounder of the Courageous Leadership consulting firm—saw civility flying out the window after the 2016 elections, she wanted to foster a kind of baseline empathy in a hyper-partisan time.

“People say, ‘When I try to have these kinds of conversations, they …