Your day is formed by how you spend your first hour. Incorporate some or all of the five morning mindfulness ideas so that you can consciously begin your day with activities that create more focus, energy and serenity.
Mindfulness is being in the present moment. Whenever we bring awareness to what we are directly experiencing through our thoughts and emotions, we are being mindful. Mindfulness is the ability to be aware of what we are doing and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us. We all have the natural quality of mindfulness, but it is more readily available if we practice it on a regular basis.
Mindfulness enters our everyday conversations in a powerful way. But what does mindfulness really mean?
Mindfulness is self-awareness. It’s noticing and paying attention to thoughts, feelings, behavior, and everything else.
Jon Kabbat-Zinn, PhD has studied mindfulness more than 35 years and is the creator of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR). Dr. Kabbat-Zinn says practicing mindfulness is actually a form of meditation, yet you don't have to practice for 20 minutes at a time.
You can be mindful anywhere, anytime, with anyone. Mindfulness and meditation are mirror-like reflections of each other: mindfulness supports and enriches meditation, while meditation nurtures and expands mindfulness. Where mindfulness can be applied to any situation throughout the day, meditation is usually practiced for a specific amount of time.
Mindfulness is simply awareness. It has been defined as a state of moment-to-moment awareness of one's experience without judgment. This requires being aware of and attentive to what’s going on inside and outside of your body. This requires being in the present, not being on “autopilot,” or going through the motions of life without a clear connection to what you’re feeling or doing.
Do you sometimes wander the supermarket aisles wondering what's healthy and what's not?
It seems every day there is some new product claiming to be the latest health product or superfood.
One thing that continues to be on shopper's minds are the issues with pesticides in fruits and vegetables.
In a 2015 Consumer Reports survey of 1,050 people found that pesticides are a concern for 85 percent of Americans.
Many experts and consumers believe that organic is always the best choice for your health, the environment, and the farmer's who grow our food and who are exposed to the toxic pesticides. There are definite risks depending on the type of produce and where it is grown.
Yes, we're talking testosterone. That muscle-building hormone.
But I'm not going to recommend that you take any anabolic steroid hormones or anything like that.
I am going to give you some solid tips on how you can boost your testosterone levels naturally.
What is Testosterone?
The principle male hormone in men is testosterone. The hormone is typically found in the testicles of males, yet women also have a small amount of testosterone in their ovaries.
Testosterone signifies many physical aspects of masculinity and helps to maintain sex drive, muscle strength and bone density, reproductive ability, facial and body hair.
Yet some of the primary health importance of higher levels of testosterone are closely associated with lower risks of heart disease, blood pressure, diabetes and obesity.
Happy New Year 2019!
I love the excitement of heading into a brand new year. The new year signifies renewal. Release. Letting go. Freedom. New beginnings....
How exciting! As we embark upon new year 2019, my personal ritual is to set aside a time for both introspective review and setting purposeful intention for the year ahead. I begin by lighting three white candles and playing tranquil music to attract positive energy. I then acknowledge all the year's blessings and accomplishments, honor and bless the people that helped or hindered my path, let go and forgive that which no longer serves me, and appreciate all that I am grateful. I then set blessings and overall intentions for the new year to come.
I’ve never been one to set New Year’s resolutions. I prefer to set small attainable goals as needed throughout the year, rather than one large goal at the beginning of the year.
However, New Year’s resolutions are quite popular. There are many theories as to how far they go back. Merriam-Webster quotes numerous pledges dating as far back as the 1600’s. It also cites speculation from an unknown author that New Year’s resolutions dates back well over 200 years giving people in the early 19th century—much like those today—an excuse for misbehavior up to New Year's Eve.
Today, many people still set New Year’s resolutions and try to achieve them. Most resolutions are based around self-improvement including losing weight, quitting smoking and/or drinking, and improving finances. Though over 40% or more Americans make New Year’s Resolutions, according to the University of Scranton research just 8% of people achieve their New Year's goals. Many of these resolutions do not even last a few weeks.
The question remains, why do so many people fail at goal-setting, and what are the secrets behind those who succeed?
Weight loss advice is so common (and contentious) now. There are competing opinions and false promises everywhere.
I say, forget about "who's right" and let's focus on "what's right." Because what gets results is what I'm focusing on in this post.
There are way too many weight loss myths out there that it makes it difficult to know how to navigate. I’m going to tackle the top ones I come across in my practice.
Hippocrates said, “All disease begins in the gut.”
And while this may not be 100% true for every disease in every person, more and more research shows that our gut (digestive system) has a bigger role in many diseases than we used to think. We're not just talking about heartburn, constipation, diarrhea, IBS, IBD, etc. We're talking about a wide range of chronic diseases and issues such as diabetes, cardiovascular, mood disorders (anxiety, depression), obesity, hormonal and autoimmune issues.
There are a lot of reasons for this. Our gut is the portal to the outside world. It's here where we take in disease-causing bacteria, viruses, and parasites. We also take in nutrients (and toxins) through our gut. The nutrients we ingest and absorb are the building blocks of every single part of our body. We're just learning the connections between our gut and other areas of our body, like our brain (have you heard of "the gut-brain axis"). Not just our gut per se; but, its friendly resident microbes too. These guys also have newly discovered roles in our gut health and overall health.
In fact, researchers now believe that healing the intestinal lining and restoring gut health are key to optimal health.
So, let's talk about the roles that our gut and gut microbes play in our overall health. Then I'll give you tips to improve your gut health naturally.
Coffee is healthy. Coffee is not healthy. Drink it. Avoid it.
Why all the confusion?
If you want to know whether you should drink coffee or avoid it, today’s post is for you. Coffee affects different people differently. It has some health benefits, but there are people who should avoid it.
Is this you? What should you consider before your next cuppa joe?
Not to mention, what’s my recommended recipe (and does it contain coffee, decaf, or tea?). Oh, the suspense!
You knew there was a bit of an over-emphasis (borderlining obsession) about cholesterol, right?
Before we jump into some myths let's make sure we're on the same page when it comes to what exactly cholesterol is.
It can be too easy to think (or worry) about your weight.
But you know what? There is something else that may be more important when it comes to real health. That is your waist circumference.
Ahh, just a minute! It's not just about the “pinchable” fat under the skin (you know, that “muffin top”), it's about the internal fat around your abdominal organs that can be the real issue.
That internal fat (AKA “visceral fat”) is known to release a bunch of hormones and inflammatory compounds that can mess with your blood sugar, blood fats (i.e triglycerides), and blood pressure.
In today's post I'll describe how to measure your waist circumference and then give you a bunch of actionable tips to help you reduce it. And (of course) there's a super-nutritious recipe at the end.
Oh, that elusive sleep. Our time to rest, regenerate, heal and repair.
If you need that cup of coffee or two (or three!) every morning to get going, you may get some very useful tips in this post.
High quality sleep isn't just important for your mind and body to have energy and be alert, it is vital to our healing. While the body appears from the outside to be still and inactive, sleep is a time when the body is quite busy restocking our supply of hormones, processing significant toxins, repairing damaged tissue, generating vital white blood cells for immunity, eliminating the effects of stress, and processing heavy emotions of the day.
On the flip side, a lack of sleep can contribute to serious health issues which of course none of us want.
So let me have your attention for this “tip-filled” post on the importance of sleep and how you can get your fair share. I'll even throw in an amazing caffeine-free latte recipe for your afternoon “pick me up”.
What is Metabolism?
This word “metabolism” is thrown around a lot these days.
You know that if yours is too slow you might gain weight. But what exactly does this all mean?
Well technically “metabolism” is the word to describe all of the biochemical reactions in your body. It's how you take in nutrients and oxygen and use them to fuel everything you do.
Your body has an incredible ability to grow, heal, and generally stay alive. And without this amazing biochemistry you would not be possible.
Metabolism includes how the cells in your body:
So when you put all of these processes together into your metabolism you can imagine that these processes can work too quickly, too slowly, or just right.
Which brings us to the “metabolic rate”.
MARK HYMAN, MD
Today’s house call focuses on a topic very personal to me.
“Mark, what would you do if you were diagnosed with cancer?” a friend recently asked. I’ve had a lot of time to think about this. I’ve sadly seen a lot of cancer in my life, both with my own family and with patients.
The problem is that conventional medicine protocols have a lot wrong when it comes to cancer. We are good at cutting it, burning it, and poisoning it with surgery, radiation, and drugs, but many doctors fail to treat the cause of the cancer.
You see, conventional medicine focuses on naming diseases based on geography, body location, and specialty, instead of by the cause, mechanism, or pathway involved.
Doctors say you have liver, kidney, brain, or heart disease, but this approach to naming disease tells you nothing about the cause.
Instead of asking what disease you have and what drug should be used to treat it, we must ask WHY the disease has occurred. What are the underlying causes that lead to illness?
Modern medicine approaches illness like a mechanic trying to diagnose what’s wrong with your car by listening to the noises it makes and never looking inside to see what’s going on. Functional Medicine allows us to look under the hood. It gives us a method for identifying the conditions in which disease thrives and shows us how to begin changing those conditions.