Showing posts from March 10, 2019

6 Things Never to Buy Used

1/16 What’s the Big Deal?You might save some money upfront, but buying used can come with hidden costs. From bed bugs to product recalls, things can go sideways sometimes. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t buy anything secondhand. But when you get that thrift store itch, know what to watch out for and which things you should never buy used. Swipe to advance 2/16 Do: Be Careful With Kids’ StuffWhen it comes to toys and children’s furniture, always check for safety recalls and make sure there’s no lead paint involved. If you can’t find out for sure, move on. You also should stay away from anything with missing or broken parts, or that’s wobbly when it should be stable. And remember that older products may not have the same safety features as new ones. Swipe to advance 3/16 Don’t: Buy Car SeatsThis means booster seats, too. While you can check for recalls, you don’t know a seat’s history. Even a little fender bender could have damaged it and keep it from protecting your child the way it was meant…

Can Your Gut Health Impact Your Pain?

By Peter Abaci,
MDBoard-certified anesthesiologist and pain specialist

You may have noticed that at any given moment your pain levels can fluctuate based on many different variables, including the weather, how much sleep you got the night before, and whether or not you are having a stressful day. But you may not have given much thought to the role that bacteria might be playing in how you feel.

You have hundreds of different types of bacteria living inside the gut that make up what is referred to as the microbiome, and like a fingerprint, each person’s microbiome is a bit unique but swayed by factors like diet, the environment, and lifestyle habits. Research has shown that the composition of the gut bacteria in healthy people often differs from those with certain diseases, including obesity, heart disease, inflammatory bowel disease, diabetes, autoimmune disorders, and even depression.

As we start to learn more about how our microbiome affects our overall health, we are also starting to …

Could Pacemakers Be Powered By Heartbeats One Day?

By Amy Norton
HealthDay Reporter

Scientists say they've taken a first step toward creating a pacemaker that runs on the heart's own energy rather than batteries.

Pacemakers are electronic devices implanted to regulate your heartbeat -- usually because of a condition that slows your heart's normal rate. Traditional pacemakers have two parts: a battery-powered pulse generator implanted under the collarbone, and insulated wires that connect it to your heart.

Because those batteries eventually wear down, pacemakers have to be replaced every five to 12 years. So, some scientists have been working an alternative: battery-free pacemakers that in theory would never have to be replaced.

The "most promising" approach right now is to harness the energy of the heartbeat to power the pacemaker, said researcher and study author Bin Yang.

One problem with the experimental devices developed so far has been their rigid structure, which limits their power.

So, Yang and his team de…

How to Spot a Bedbug Bite

Don’t Let the Bedbugs BiteAs if you needed something else to worry about, bedbugs, those pests from the old bedtime rhyme are making a comeback. More of a nuisance than a health hazard, they’re showing up to suck blood from people in hotels, college dorms, and hospitals. Take an informative look at bedbugs: what they are, where they lurk, and how to spot them before they get you. Swipe to advance 2/9 Know the EnemyBedbugs are small, flat, wingless insects with six legs that, like mosquitoes, feed on blood from animals or people. They range in color from almost white to brown, but they turn rusty red after feeding. The common bedbug doesn't grow much longer than 0.2 inches (0.5 centimeters) and can be seen by the naked eye to the astute observer. Bedbugs get their name because they like to hide in bedding and mattresses. Swipe to advance 3/9 Am I at Risk for Infestation?Bedbugs are most often found in hotels, hostels, shelters, and apartment complexes where lots of people come and go. B…

Family Is Helping Others to Heal

Oscar Grant III was an unarmed Black man killed by a police officer in Oakland, Calif., years before Black Lives Matter drew national attention to the growing number of unarmed Black men, women and children who die at the hands of law enforcement officers what some scholars are calling an epidemic.Jan. 1 marked 10 years since the 22-year-old father was fatally shot by the Bay Area Regional Transit officer in the early morning hours of New Year's Day.In the decade since his tragic death, Grant's family has helped to create a police citizen review board of BART, established a foundation, and launched a campaign to not only help bridge the gap between police and the community, but also to build a nationwide network of families affected by such violence. Read on to see how one family is using their tragedy to help others heal.

How Understanding Evolution Can Help Us to Be Happy

A new book looks at how our evolutionary past influences our present behavior, good and bad.

By Jill Suttie

We humans evolved to be social creatures. By gaining the skills to cooperate with others, we were able to stave off predators, eat more consistently, and care for each other’s young, allowing our genes to carry forward.

So, why do we still struggle at times to get along—even to the extent that we war on one another? And how can understanding our evolutionary heritage help us have better relationships and more happiness today?

There are the kinds of questions pondered in psychologist William Von Hippel’s book The Social Leap. Von Hippel explains that while evolution has shaped us to work together cooperatively to survive, it has also made us susceptible to the lure of competition and status in a way that can endanger our relationships and well-being.

The book is partly a history of how we came to be the complex social creatures we are today, starting all the way back in early human de…

Eight Tips for Fostering Mindfulness in Teenagers

Have you ever wondered what it takes to be a successful teacher? In this article, mindfulness educator Patrick Cook-Deegan shares what he's learned about how to connect with teenagers in the classroom. From the importance of class size and curriculum, to when students are most engaged, these tips offer valuable insights into the challenging and rewarding world of teaching.

Do You Know How to Eat a Raisin?

Do you have trouble slowing down enough to actually enjoy your life? Our Happiness Guinea Pig, comedian and radio host Luke Burbank, finds a way to break free from his over-scheduled lifestyle.


Luke Burbank: I’m in a hotel room in Seattle and I’m looking out on a little shipping canal. And this is just by total coincidence, or maybe by serendipity, that my hotel room I’m sitting in looks out on this little body of water where I used to have a boat moored. It was a boat that I bought because I got in this phase, I don’t know, five or six years ago, where I decided that the thing that was gonna make me happy was having an old wooden boat that I could, you know, sand down and re-varnish and take out on the water and essentially be a different version of myself when I was on the boat. At the time I thought if I just have this certain kind of old Chris Craft wood boat, I will drive it around Lake Unio…

Letters from a Tibetan Colony

In this moving piece from over a decade ago, Dr. Sriram Shamasunder, shares updates from a month working in a refugee community comprised mostly of Buddhist monks and nuns. He writes of the contrast between the deep care and concern that this community extends to all forms of life, and the apathy with which their own medical needs are handled by the government. His poignant piece is a reminder of the many gaps that exist in our world, and a tribute to the many unsung heroes who have dedicated their lives to trying to fill them.

Why You Never Seem to Have Enough Time

We feel pressed for time due to our own psychology, not just the tyranny of the clock.

By Kira M. Newman

Right now, I can feel the tight squeeze of stress in my stomach. This morning, I got a call from a close friend needing support, which prevented me from starting this article. At any moment, I expect one of my coworkers to email me asking for help with a last-minute assignment. And I’m set to leave my desk early for a dentist appointment, after which I’ll rush home to cook a late dinner.

I’m under time pressure—and I know I’m not alone. If you’re a woman, or a single parent, or practically anyone living in today’s go-go-go American society, you probably are, too. When researchers surveyed Americans before 2011, about half said they almost never had time on their hands and two-thirds said they sometimes or always felt rushed (though a more recent study suggests things may be improving a bit).

As researcher Cassie Mogilner and her colleagues write in a 2012 paper, “With waking hours lar…