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Don't Mess with Runners

Don't Mess with Runners

Written by Sylvia Anderson
on Friday, 18 April 2014
Monday is the Boston Marathon. Many folks might not have paid much attention to this day, in the past. But that all changed with the events that transpired just over a year ago. Now, this iconic marathon becomes even more so; dedicating the run and race to all those who were killed and injured.

My sister, Rachel, is going to be one among the pack. Last year after the bombings, she made it her mission to qualify and run Boston this year in memory and honor. And she did just that. See, unless you get a special "pass" or run with some sort of fundraising group, you have to qualify to run the Boston Marathon. It's the only marathon in the U.S. that requires you to do so. To make the cut, you must run the entire 26.2 miles under a specific time for your age group. Unfortunately, in my seven full marathons, I have never hit the mark. It's OK, she's faster than me. A little sibling rivalry can be healthy. In all honesty, I'm really proud of her. That's us in the picture, at the start line of the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington D.C. in 2011. If you can't tell by our body language, it was COLD. We actually did two marathons together that year, both within 30 days.

The Boston bombings rocked us as a nation, as it should. Terrorism is some tricky, nasty stuff. But as a runner myself, it hit especially hard. Runners run for different reasons. They run races for different reasons, too. Some of us do it for health (mental and physical) or to raise money for a cause. Some do it as a healthy competition, with others or with themselves. I've mentioned before that I run for a variety of purposes, but mainly to keep my sanity. I ran the Marine Corps Marathon in memory of my best friend's brother, Mike, who was killed in Afghanistan.

Runners, in my opinion, are a special kind of people. Call us "joggers" and you might get a dirty look or a swift kick to the groin. So, when someone intentionally hurts us – and our supporters – we don't take it lightly. We take it in stride. We rise above. We stay strong. Boston Strong? Hell yeah.

In addition to being a runner, I am, as you know, a writer. So, last year when the bombings occurred, I got out my pen and I wrote a poem. And then I went for a run.
Marriage, Divorce and the New Monogamy

Marriage, Divorce and the New Monogamy

Written by Sylvia Anderson
on Sunday, 13 April 2014
I'm nearing the 21st anniversary of my first date with my husband. Twenty-one years! That seems like a very, very long time to be with the same person.

But, that's a generational observation. To my grandparents, who were married 50+ years before they passed on, 21 years was just a warm-up.

Obviously, things have changed.

Divorce is just as common as long-lasting marriages, with an estimated 2.4 million couples divorcing in 2012 (the latest reliable statistics available). In an environment where celebrities often set the standard of what life should look like, divorce is commonplace... even after a measly 72 days if you happen to be a Kardashian.

There's a ton of reasons why more couples separate these days. A hundred years ago, it was unheard of. Couples had to stay together for family strength, financial stability, a pending inheritance. Now, people divorce because they're not happy, they constantly fight, one individual wants financial independence, infidelity, etc., etc.

Which leads me to the question of monogamy: are people truly supposed to stay with one person for an entire lifetime? Or might there be something more to this concept of "the new monogamy"? Would you be OK if your partner suggested that you have multiple partners if it meant it might save your marriage?
Do You Believe in Women's Intuition?

Do You Believe in Women's Intuition?

Written by Sylvia Anderson
on Sunday, 06 April 2014
It's been a concept for a very long time: women's intuition. Call it a sixth sense, gut instinct, a simple "knowing" that women seem to possess more often than men. But is it really real?

Psychology Today suggests that "...women are, as a group, better at reading facial expressions of emotions than are men. As a result, women are more likely to pick up on the subtle emotional messages being sent by others." That's their definition of the phenomenon; a science-based explanation of why women can sense things better than men.

According to Urban Dictionary, however, the definition of "women's intuition" is this: Something that every woman has where you just know. Whether it's that your lover is cheating on you or you get uneasy vibes from a co-worker, it's that gut feeling telling you that something is wrong. It may come in the form of a dream, deja vu, a funny feeling, all three, or something else. Never doubt this feeling. Ever.

I particularly like that last part... I think regardless of what is behind the feeling/sensation/suspicion, you should always know that it means something.
Balancing Work, Grad School & My Social Life

Balancing Work, Grad School & My Social Life

Written by Lauren Allen
on Saturday, 29 March 2014


How do I keep my head on straight when everything demands parts of my day? Let me first start off by saying how lucky I am to be working while in school. Especially doing something that I love to do. I know I am not the only student who goes to work everyday, and then off to class at night. If I could, I would give each of you a piece of cake of admiration and have a day specifically dedicated to you.

Also, I want to say how fortunate I am to be in Grad school. Never in my life did I think I would even graduate college, sometimes high school was even doubtful, but here I am about to graduate with a master's degree in June.

That being said, don't you ever feel like screaming and ripping your hair out, or should I say shave it all off (like most people seem to do when they've officially lost it)?

I do.

Fighting Against Seasonal Allergies

Fighting Against Seasonal Allergies

Written by Michael A. Smith, MD
on Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Now that it's sniffle and sneeze season, people are already looking for relief. Black cumin seed oil contains a known immune modulator that could potentially help millions of people dry up their sinuses.

Now, we're not talking about the spice cumin - that's a totally different plant species from black cumin. This is something else entirely.

So, although I would always advise to cook liberally with cumin, it probably won't help your runny, itchy nose. Sorry.

But black cumin, however, may very well help because it provides thymoquinone - an immune modulator. Let's explore how it works.

The Biggest Success of the Proposed Nutrition Facts Label: Added Sugars Will Mean Less Chronic Disease & More Jobs For America

The Biggest Success of the Proposed Nutrition Facts Label: Added Sugars Will Mean Less Chronic Disease & More Jobs For America

Written by Michael Roizen, MD
on Sunday, 16 March 2014


The United States Food and Drug Administration's (FDA's) proposed changes to one of the most iconic, well-recognized designs to all Americans, were presented by First Lady Michelle Obama Thursday.

The changes are much more than a new design and adding a few numbers to the panel.

From a broader perspective, the FDA's proposed changes reflect a shift in the chance that health care changes in the future will be a tailwind rather than a headwind to American jobs and prosperity. After 30 years of US obesity rates climbing, there is a shift towards creating solutions that are in favor of American consumers, rather than the powerful food industry.

The FDA estimates that the changes will mean a one-time cost of $2.3 billion to the food industry for labeling, reformulation, and record keeping, plus small annual costs for recurring record-keeping. However the FDA also predicts that over the next 20 years, these changes will save an average of $21.1 billion to $31.4 billion in healthcare costs.

Two key changes : Calories per container and per more accurate portions and Added Sugars.

Hugs for Hire: Would You Pay to Cuddle?

Hugs for Hire: Would You Pay to Cuddle?

Written by Sylvia Anderson
on Sunday, 02 March 2014
The power of touch is an incredible force. A hug can instantly improve your mood or put you more at ease in an uncomfortable situation. A massage provides a stress outlet like no other. Science has even proven that human touch releases the feel-good hormones oxytocin and serotonin and decreases levels of cortisol (the "stress" hormone). But how far would you go to incorporate touch into your life? Would you pay money to snuggle?

You can, you know. In this world where you can buy pretty much anything -- including happiness -- there are now professional for-hire cuddling companies. HER Radio hosts, Michelle King Robson and Dr. Pam Peeke, recently visited with founder of Cuddle Up to Me, Samantha Hess, to learn more about her business as a professional cuddler and what that even means (listen to the segment here).

What DOES it mean?
10 Things to Never Say to Someone Who Can’t Eat Gluten

10 Things to Never Say to Someone Who Can’t Eat Gluten

Written by Lauren Allen
on Thursday, 27 February 2014

You may have read my last rant about the differences between someone who physically can not break down gluten (the protein that is found in wheat, barley and rye) and will get terribly sick if gluten ends up on their plate, to those that think gluten is for some particular reason an ingredient that once not consumed anymore will help them lose weight and eat healthy.

At the three year anniversary of my diagnosis coming up, I wanted to share to those who still don't fully understand why I can't just pick the brownies out of an ice cream sundae.

Let me help you so you won't embarrass yourself and annoy your friend.

What you should never say to someone who can't eat gluten:
Omega-7 Fatty Acids Decrease Hunger

Omega-7 Fatty Acids Decrease Hunger

Written by Michael A. Smith, MD
on Wednesday, 26 February 2014

The Sea Buckthorn plant has an unusual concentration of the essential omega-7 fatty acid. Some nutritionists even believe it's the best source of Omega-7 fat that exists.

But why is this important to you?

Well, for starters, omega-7 helps your body maintain itself in a variety of ways, including counteracting weight gain. The discovery of this fact has obviously produced a great amount of interest among medical researchers, and initial surprising research has many predicting that omega-7 may ultimately become a powerful tool in the weight loss battle.

Below, we'll explore the details.
5 Keys to Living a Long, Healthy, Happy Life

5 Keys to Living a Long, Healthy, Happy Life

Written by Michael Roizen, MD
on Friday, 07 February 2014

Last week the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a report that found American's life expectancy has yet again increased for both men and women. Individuals born in 2009 can expect to live longer than ever before - approximately 78.5 years, up from just 78.1 years one year ago.

A gain of more than a third of a year in just one year. At this rate, this might be interpreted to mean the 30 year old person (in 2010) making healthy choices who would have been estimated to live to 95 in 2010, would make it to 115+ by the time she is 90 in 2070.

Since the data were collected and analyzed, life expectancy has increased even higher to 78.7 years, according to the CDC website, in-line with this potential. But will these be healthy vibrant years. Yes, you can make them that.

Thanks to improvements in medical technology for treating heart disease and stroke, Americans are living longer lives than ever before. The downfall of these technologies is that while they are able to buy a few extra years, they are not necessarily providing quality years of health and wellbeing.

Prevention is needed to do that.
What Your Food Looks Like Can Help Your Digestion

What Your Food Looks Like Can Help Your Digestion

Written by Holly Lucille, ND, RN
on Monday, 03 February 2014


We used to have a saying in school: "HEAL THE HOLE". Because so much of one's overall health depends on taking in nutrients, assimilating, digesting and absorbing them in order to have optimal health. Digestion truly is the key to being well and vital.

Did you ever hear that digestion actually starts in the mouth, not in the stomach?

Well guess what? Neither of those places is where the mighty and imperative digestive process can and should begin.

Digestion actually starts in the eyes and in the nose. Yes, I said the eyes and the nose.

Modern Day Thyroid: Thinking Things Through

Modern Day Thyroid: Thinking Things Through

Written by Holly Lucille, ND, RN
on Thursday, 30 January 2014

Have you been feeling a little "off" lately? Lack of energy, always feeling cold, trouble concentrating, or unexplained weight gain could be a sign of an underactive thyroid. According to the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, upwards of 27 million Americans suffer from some type of thyroid disorder. Of those, it's estimated that half remain undiagnosed.

Misdiagnosed and Misunderstood

Hailed as "the master" of our endocrine system, second only to the pituitary, the thyroid is a small gland shaped like the outspread wings of a butterfly that sits at the base of the throat. It excretes two hormones - thyroxine (also known as T4) and triiodothyronine (or T3) - that regulate metabolism within every cell in the body.

Low levels of these hormones slow everything down, and it's why symptoms of hypothyroidism often include weight gain and fatigue, as well as constipation, depression, irritability, low body temperature, sleep disturbances, forgetfulness, edema (fluid retention), hair loss, decreased libido, joint pain, and a hoarse voice.

Yet, because these symptoms can resemble a host of other diseases, the thyroid is often overlooked by physicians.
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