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6 Natural Ways To Heal Back Problems Through Massage, Food & Yoga

6 Natural Ways To Heal Back Problems Through Massage, Food & Yoga

6 Natural Ways To Heal Back Problems Through Massage, Food & Yoga

Back pain is extremely common ailment, currently affecting at least 8 out of 10 people.  As reported by the American Chiropractic Association (ACA), nearly 31 million Americans experience lower back pain at certain point of their lives.

Inactivity, obesity, poor posture, osteoporosis, stress, and diseases like blood clots, infections, and kidney stones are considered the major causes of lower back pain. The structure of the back is quite complex. Being consisted of bones, muscles, joints, and ligaments, it is very likely to irritate or sprain the inner workings which keep it strong and supportive.

Neglecting and ignoring the pain, most people turn to painkillers in order to proceed with their day-to-day activities pain-free. However, this doesn’t address the root cause, and long term use can eventually lead to kidney damage, ulcers, liver damage, and even aggravate issues with blood clotting.

The good news is that it`s possible to prevent and even treat disease without the need of popping medications and pain-killers that offer temporary relief.  The right approach includes lifestyle changes and using time-tested and scientifically-proven remedies.

1. Yoga

Cobra pose, cat pose, triangle pose, and bridge pose are extremely useful when it comes to both preventing and curing back pain safely. It has been scientifically shown that practicing yoga helps reduce the severity of low back pain, improve mental health, increase serotonin levels, and promote better sleep.

2. Exercise Therapy

Contrary to popular belief, rest and inactivity aren’t the best cures for back pain. Quite the opposite, physical activity is basically far more beneficial for reducing back pain and strengthening the muscles of the spine.

“Why are we not prescribing an inexpensive, effective treatment? Some of it is, I think, we don’t think of exercise as being a treatment the way a tablet or a procedure or a physical therapy treatment might,” says Dr. Tim Carey, an internist at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. “We’re a fairly pill-oriented society. Pills are easy to take, and as a doctor, pills are easy to prescribe.”

According to Chris Maher, a physical therapist turned health researcher at the University of Sydney in Australia, “What we do understand about the back it that the more you use it, the more likely you are to keep it strong, fit and healthy.”

As found by a study in which back pain patients underwent a 10-week exercise treatment of the muscles of the spine,  physical activity does help improve posture and perform activities that once worsened the pain.

3. Salt Therapy

Epsom salt bath has therapeutic properties which are extremely beneficial in case of back pain.  The magnesium and sulfur content are readily absorbed in the body, and when combined with essential oils like ylang ylang or lavender oil, they have been found to improve circulation.  Epsom salt bath helps sooth nerves, relax muscle spasms, and alleviate pain.

4. Acupuncture

Acupuncture, a Chinese practice which involves inserting needles in specific points to improve blood flow, is widely used to treat back pain. According to one study, acupuncture applied to the most aching point of the back provided an instant relief.

5. Cold Therapy

Cold therapy has become all the rage over the past few years, and for a very good reason. This treatment, which involves ice packs, ice massage, or cold whirlpools, lowers the temperature of the skin and tissues to a depth of two to four centimeters.

Consequently, this leads to a reduction in the activation of nociceptors, pain receptors across the body, which send pain signals to the brain.  This therapy also reduces blood flow, inflammation, muscle spasms, and tissue metabolism.

6. Massage Therapy

Most people ask for pressure on their pain points, whether it`s a knot or some unusual, new pain. When using a device, tool, or the help of another person,  a massage therapy helps relieve painful areas. It has been scientifically shown that massage therapy works wonders for those suffering from back pain.

For instance, in one study of low back pain patients, the subjects underwent a 30-minute massage therapy two times a week for five weeks.  They reported less pain,  less anxiety and depression, and improved sleep.

Mix these 2 ingredients together to help relieve sinusitis and expel mucus

Mix these 2 ingredients together to help relieve sinusitis and expel mucus

Everyone will experience the unpleasant symptoms of sinusitis at certain point of their lives. We`re talking about the unpleasant pressure in the face, being unable to blow your nose, and feeling stuffed up. Does this ring a bell?

If yes, don’t worry.  The good news is that there are natural ways to relieve sinusitis and put an end to these uncomfortable symptoms. Read to learn more!

Do I Have Sinusitis?

Sinusitis is a condition characterized by swelling or inflammation of the tissue lining the sinuses. The sinuses, hollow spaces filled with air, are located within the bones that surround the nose. Healthy sinuses produce mucus that drains into the nose, but in case of any blockage, they end up filled with germs that cause an infection. Acute sinusitis typically lasts up to 4 weeks while chronic sinusitis can last more than 12 weeks and can continue for months.

As mentioned in the very beginning, the major symptoms of sinusitis include stuffed-up nose, runny nose, loss of smell, congestion, cough, and facial pain and pressure. Although rare, symptoms like fatigue, weakness, dental pain, and fever are also possible.

What Causes Sinusitis?

Colds, allergies, and bacteria

In most cases, sinusitis starts with a cold and eventually progress into the sinus cavities.  Colds are initiated with an infection caused by virus, which can cause welling in the nasal tissues and block the holes that drain the sinuses.  Allergies are yet another common cause of sinus infection, as they also cause inflammation in the nasal passages and thus prevent draining.

Anything that sets off allergies could increase the risk for sinusitis, including pet dander, cockroaches, mold, dust mites, and hay fever.  Bacteria are another cause of sinusitis. In such cases, the chances are streptococcus pneumoniae or haemophilus influenza infections have made a way through body`s natural defenses.

Pollutants, pools, and fungi

Environmental pollutants kike strong perfume, dust, and outdoor air pollution are also likely to cause sinus infection. They irritate the lining of the nose and cause inflammation, which in turn significantly increases the risk of sinusitis.  Chemicals in pools also tend to inflame the nasal lining and sinuses, so they are yet another common cause of sinusitis. Ultimately, fungi may also lead to a sinus infection, as the damp are of the sinuses is ideal for them to thrive.

Easy at home remedies for sinus infections

Ginger root and apple cider vinegar:

The combination of ginger root and apple cider vinegar is an effective way to clear up the nasal passages and fight off sinusitis.

Ingredients:

  • A medium-sized ginger root
  • 1 cup Apple Cider Vinegar

Instructions:

  • Grate the ginger root first, and combined it with 2 deciliters of ACV in a glass bowl
  • Transfer the solution into a glass jar and seal it well. Keep it at room temperature for 10 days, shaking the jar once in a while.
  • Put your head over the jar and cover with a towel
  • Inhale the aroma for 5-10 minutes
  • At bedtime, soak a handkerchief in the mixture and place it on the neck. Let it work overnight.
Steam Inhalation:

Steam inhalation is a good way to open up the nasal passages and alleviate the symptoms of sinusitis.  All you have to do is to lean over a bowl of boiling water, two to four times daily. Make sure you don’t breathe in the steam as it boils! Simply cover the head with a towel and inhale for about ten minutes.

In order to boost its penetrability in your face, you can also add a few drops of essential oil, such as eucalyptus essential oil.  Enjoying a steamy shower is yet another way to reap the same benefits, as the warm water also helps open up the sinuses and alleviate the pressure.

Science proves salt lamps help people with anxiety. Here’s how

Science proves salt lamps help people with anxiety. Here’s how

If you`ve never used a Himalayan salt lamp before, you really have no idea what you`re missing. In such a stressful and complicated world, owning this natural item makes a significant impact on society.

Everything that surrounds us emits ions, both positive and negative. Have you ever noticed how spending time outdoors boosts energy and makes you feel more youthful? The reason for this is the fact that there are no positive ions, which are released by devices like laptops, televisions, and cellphones. These ions have been found to cause various imbalances in the system, and excessive concentrations may lead to anxiety.

At this point, the Himalayan salt lamp steps in as the ideal way to lower your anxiety levels and improve your health.  Wonder how this simple mineral works? Read on!

1. It Fights Off Positive Ions

Himalayan salt lamp releases vast amounts of negative ions, which helps fight off the continuous attack of positive ions around us. The bigger the lamp, the more positive ions it releases. Hence, you should either choose large one or a few small ones, evenly placed around the house.

2. It Gives You Energy

According to WebMD, the lamp`s negative ions improve the oxygen flow to the brain, which boosts energy levels, fights off lethargy, and makes you more responsive to your surroundings.  Have you ever noticed how spending time at the beach or camping feels energizing?  It`s no wonder that these activities give vigor, as they expose us to an increased amount of negative ions like the ones emitted by Himalayan salt lamp.

3. It Helps You Sleep

Bedroom is the best place to keep a Himalayan salt lamp. Its wide range of health benefits will help you sleep better and wake up healthy, energized, and rejuvenated.  On the other hand, the constant exposure to negative ions makes you sluggish and lethargic.  To improve the quality of your sleep, keep one or two lamps around the bedroom.

4. It Purifies the Air

In addition to clearing the air for positive ions, the negative ones also nullify radioactive waves released by electrical devices, which in turn protects from toxic chemicals and all kinds of bacteria floating around.

As the lamp itself warms up from the heat induced by the light bulb within, the water molecules obtained from the environment evaporate back into the air, while the particles of smoke, pollen, or dust remain trapped in the salt.

5. It Fights Diseases

The ocean of electromagnetic radiation, also known as “electric smog” comes from devices like computer, cell phone, tablet, television, stereo, etc.  This radiation is known to cause cancer, cause chronic fatigue, reduce body`s immune response, and increase stress levels.

By emitting negative ions, Himalayan lamp neutralizes electromagnetic radiation, thus helps lower high blood pressure, lower the risk of heart attacks and strokes, and fight off diseases.

6. It Makes You Healthier

Apart from countering positive ions, negative ones also make you healthier.  Himalayan salt is packed with staggering 84 minerals needed by the body. With such an exceptional nutritional profile, it helps balance water content in the body, regulate pH levels, and even strengthen the bones.

10 Common Health Problems That Can Be Treated Using Epsom Salt

10 Common Health Problems That Can Be Treated Using Epsom Salt

It seems that our grandmothers knew what they were doing when they added Epsom salt in nearly any recipe.  Now, science shows that this simple ingredient possesses powerful medicinal properties, which led to a rapid increase in its popularity.

Epsom salt is made up of magnesium sulfate, a pure mineral compound which has a wide plethora of uses. It is associated with many health benefits as well, including the following:

  1. Alleviating joint and sprain pain
  2. Preventing hardening of the arteries
  3. Preventing the formation of blood clots
  4. Managing stress and tension
  5. Reducing inflammation
  6. Detoxifying the body
  7. Soothing and relaxing sore muscles
  8. Lowering the risk of diabetes
  9. Strengthening the bones
  10. Promoting better sleep

Apart from being used for medicinal properties, Epsom salt offers many beauty and cleaning uses.  Check some of them out!

1. Cough

Colds and flu accompanied with persistent cough are extremely common during the winter period.  The good news is that enjoying an Epsom salt bath for twenty minutes helps stop the symptoms due to its mineral content.

2. Muscle Pain

To soothe aching muscles, add two cups of Epsom salt to a bathtub and soak form about ten minutes.

3. Stress

Add two cups of Epsom salt to a bathtub along with a few drops of eucalyptus essential oil and soak for about ten minutes, three times weekly.

4. Constipation

Since it acts as mild laxative, Epsom salt is effective in treating constipation. Simply add a teaspoon of Epsom salt to a glass of water and its magnesium sulfate content will soften the stool and stop the constipation.

5. Acne

Due to its antimicrobial properties, Epsom salt has the ability to kill off bacteria, cleanse the pores, and exfoliates the skin.

6. Splinter Removal

Dissolve two tablespoons of Epsom salt in a glass of water and soak a cotton cloth in the solution. Apply onto the splinter and let it do its trick. Another option is to add a teaspoon of Epson salt to a cup of hot water, leave it cool down, and apply over the splinter.

7. Foot Health

To soften the skin, eliminate bad pain, or even relieve pain, soak the feet in a bowl of warm water with half a cup of Epsom salt. The combination of cup of Epsom salt, olive oil, and lemon castle soap is particularly effective in softening the rough skin.

8. Mild Sunburn

To soothe itchiness and redness associated with mild sunburn can be alleviate by soaking in an Epsom salt bath.

9. Skin Inflammation

Dissolve a tablespoon of Epsom salt in half a glass of warm water, allow it to cool, and apply the solution on the affected area.

10. Gardening

Magnesium and sulfur, the key compounds in Epsom salt, have been shown to stimulate the growth of plants as well as to provide higher yields and more bloods. As a matter of fact, it has been scientifically shown that it also minimizes the need for fertilizers and enhances their effects.

11. Crafts

Last but not least, this salt can be used for countless crafts, such as snowballs, fall décor, greeting cards, holiday jars, and many more.

So, if you`ve been looking for a safe and cheap alternative to over-the-counter remedies and helpful gardening and household ingredient, look no further. Epsom salt has been already approved by doctors, researchers, and gardening experts, all of whom describe its numerous benefits.

You’re inhaling cancer-causing chemicals in your household dust! Here’s 3 ways to reduce exposure

You’re inhaling cancer-causing chemicals in your household dust! Here’s 3 ways to reduce exposure

Dust in your house is extremely annoying, yet so common that we tend to ignore it.  However, it turns out that household dust could be wreaking havoc to you and your children, even more than you think. Day-to-day items and products like pizza boxes, toys, and non-stick cookware emit chemicals in the air that potentially turn in dangerous dust particles.

When the Toxic Dust Settles

Recently, researchers at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University did a study on household dust, which is the first study of this kind. They found 45 detrimental chemicals in the dust, with 10 being found in 90 percent of the dust samples.

These include flame retardants like TPHP, TDCIPP, and TCEP, a carcinogen that is often used in baby products, building materials, and furniture.

Phthalates were the most prevalent chemical class found in the dust samples. These chemicals are commonly used in cosmetics and toys to soften the plastic. The problem with these chemicals is that they have been associated with respiratory problems, declines in IQ, hormonal imbalance, infertility, and obesity.

According to Ami Zota, lead author and assistant professor of environmental and occupational health, “The findings suggest that people, and especially children, are exposed on a daily basis to multiple chemicals in dust that is linked to serious health problems.”  She also adds that “exposure to even small amounts of chemicals in combination can lead to amplified health risk, especially for developing infants and young mothers”.

Even more disturbing is the fact that children were particularly prone to the adverse side effects of contaminated dust, since they often play on the floor and touch their mouths.  “They end up having a lot more exposure to chemicals in dust and they are more vulnerable to toxic effects because their brains and bodies are still developing,” said Singla, co-author of the study from the Natural Resources Defense Council in California.

How to Limit Exposure

Contrary to popular belief, cleaning the house on a regular basis is not enough to cut down the risks associated with household dust. Chemical concentration can accumulate rapidly, and the problem becomes worse they aren’t visible to the naked eye.

However, there are certain steps that can be taken to limit exposure to contaminated dust. Read on to learn what else can be done apart from vacuuming and mopping the floors, dusting with a damp cloth, and cleaning the house thoroughly on a regular basis.

1.     We, as consumers, should make careful choices regarding the products we buy. Products that contain detrimental chemicals like DIBP, DNBP, DEHP, DEP, HFCs, and phenols should be avoided at all cost.

2.     Washing the hands with plain soap and water before eating is a must!

3.     An app called Detox Me provides tips on how to limit exposure to chemicals, such as using fragrance-free cleaning products, swapping vinyl shower curtains for nylon, and many more.

Additional steps you can take to limit exposure to detrimental chemicals includes using castile soap as replacement for skin care products, laundry and dish detergent, and all-purpose cleaner as well as making your own, natural cleaning products using ingredients like baking soda, vinegar, and essential oils.

Press these pressure points on your wrist to fall asleep faster and make anxiety go away

Press these pressure points on your wrist to fall asleep faster and make anxiety go away

One of the sleep techniques that have been proven to be extremely effective for many people is acupuncture.  As a matter of fact, acupuncture steps in as the ideal way to treat insomnia without the adverse side effects associated with pharmaceutical drugs.

This technique has gained bad reputation for being unsupported by scientific evidence.  However, the truth is that  apart from working on the basis of Chinese medicine and self-experimentation,  acupuncture`s benefits, particularly when it comes to promoting better sleep,  are backed up by science.

The Evidence Behind Acupuncture for Insomnia

A 2004 report found that in anxiety patients, acupuncture increased the production of melatonin as well as the total sleep time.  The patients who underwent acupuncture also fell asleep much faster and were less stressed. As concluded by the researchers, “Acupuncture treatment may be of value for some categories of anxious patients with insomnia.”

Another, separate study found that acupuncture promotes better sleep in patients with HIV, among whom sleep problems are extremely common.  It was found that “Sleep activity and sleep quality significantly improved following 5 weeks of individualized acupuncture…”

Earlier studies have shown that this technique works for people who are completely healthy, too. A 1999 study discovered that acupuncture helped normal people with insomnia to get a better sleep.

With this being said, it becomes evident that acupuncture works as great way to treat insomnia naturally.  According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, each person has their own pattern that describes how the body is out of balance.  This is how using needles at certain points along the different meridians running through the body helps treat that imbalance.

Heart 7 and Pericardium 6 are the most effective points used to treat insomnia.  There is a strong relationship between the two, from the anatomical location to the close link between the “Shen” aka spirit and the calming effect.  The Traditional Chinese Medicine name for Heart 7 is Shenmen, meaning Spirit Gate while the name for Pericardium is Neiguan, meaning Inner Gate.  In some instances, both of them need to be open in order to release bad influences from the inside out and receive positive from the outside in.

Heart 7 is found on the anterior side of the transverse crease of the wrist. There is a tiny depression on the radial side of the ulnar tendon where the point can be located. Sometimes, it`s better to needle this point from the ulnar side under the ulnar tendon as it`s more comfortable.

Pericardium 6 is located on the anterior side of the wrist, about two finger widths from the transverse crease of the wrist.  It can be also found between the two tendons running up the arm.  Just like Heart 7, this point can also offer radiation sensation when activated.

Although there are many other acupuncture points used during a treatment, these two are a good place to start. Any healing process requires a full mind-body approach, but stimulating these points can be extremely helpful for those struggling with sleep.

Eat more mushrooms if you want to avoid dementia and Alzheimer’s, study suggests

Eat more mushrooms if you want to avoid dementia and Alzheimer’s, study suggests

Dementia is an umbrella term form a decline in mental ability that sometimes goes to the extent of interfering with day-to-day activities.  Alzheimer is the most prevalent type of dementia.

Dementia is an unspecific disease characterized with a wide plethora of symptoms linked to a decline in memory and other thinking skills. As mentioned above, Alzheimer`s is the most common type, accounting for 60-80 percent of cases.

Dementia is often improperly referred to as ‘senility’ and most people consider it as normal sign of aging.  However, the truth is that it isn’t always triggered by aging. For instance, vascular dementia, which is the second most prevalent type of dementia, occurs after a stroke.  There are many different conditions that cause symptoms of dementia, such as vitamin deficiencies and thyroid problems.

Although the symptoms of dementia can vary, at least two of the core mental functions below must be impaired to be considered dementia:

  • Visual perception
  • Communication and language
  • Reasoning and judgment
  • Memory
  • Ability to focus and pay attention

While many changes in the brain responsible for the onset of dementia are permanent and tend to worsen over time, memory and thinking issues caused by the following conditions may improve once the condition is properly addressed:

  • Thyroid problems
  • Vitamin deficiencies
  • Depression
  • Medication side effects
  • Excess use of alcohol

The treatment depends on the cause. While there is not cure for most progressive dementias, there are drug treatments capable of temporarily improving the symptoms.  As prevention is always better than the cure, this article focuses on non-drug therapy that has been scientifically shown to help protect against dementia and Alzheimer`s.

According to a 2017 study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food, certain edible mushrooms contain bioactive components that help prevent neurodegenerative diseases like dementia and Alzheimer`s disease.  This study is the first of its kind to support the potential role of mushrooms as foods to reduce or delay the onset of this disease.

“The current study might stimulate the identification of more food materials that are neuroprotective,” stated Journal of Medicinal Food Editor-in-Chief Sampath Parthasarathy, Medical Xpress reported.

This study focuses on mushrooms` components and their cognitive and neuroprotective benefits. According to Parthasarathy, this is one of the first studies done on the brain benefits of certain foods.

Mushrooms have been used for thousands of years, both for their taste and the medicinal properties they offer. As reported by Dr. Joseph Mercola, edible fungi are loaded with vitamin D and are capable of boosting the immune system.  Their anti-inflammatory properties can be beneficial for individuals suffering from renal failure, stroke damage, rheumatoid arthritis, and asthma.

Needless to say, not all mushrooms are safe and healthy to eat. It has been shown that eating psilocybin, a specific type of fungi, provides a temporary mind-bending perspective on reality.

Researchers have long studied the medical properties of ‘magic mushrooms.  As reported by Medical Daily, the psychedelic drug has the ability to treat those with depression or alleviate the psychological effects of cancer.

The 30-second shower trick that puts your body in fat burning mode and helps relieve depression

The 30-second shower trick that puts your body in fat burning mode and helps relieve depression

Hot showers are one of the best life`s pleasures. But, what happens when you are the last one to shower or when someone flushes the toilet mid-shower? Well, this feeling is probably familiar to everyone, as much as uncomfortable it feels. Unfortunately, we have all been left covered in bone-chilling cold water at least once in our lives.

While we find ourselves shivering with anger in such moment, it turns out that it can be beneficial for our health. Often referred to as “Scottish Shower” or “James Bond Shower”, turning the temperature t cold at the end of the shower may offer amazing benefits for both the skin and the overall health.

The Benefits of a Cold Shower – Even For 30 Seconds

1. Refines Hair and Skin

Cold shower is one of the best natural ways to nourish your hair and maintain your appearance.  Hot water tends to dry out the skin, while cold water tightens both the cuticles and pores, preventing them from getting clogged.  Additionally, it can close the pores in the skin and scalp, which helps prevent dirt from getting in.

According to Jessica Krant, a board-certified dermatologist, ice-cold or lukewarm water helps prevent the skin from being deprived of its natural oils. While it tightens the skin by constricting the blood flow, it doesn’t shrink the pores.

As for hair care, cold showers make it look stronger, healthier, and shinier, as they flatten the hair follicles and boost their ability to take over the scalp.

2. Increases Alertness

Taking a cold shower right upon waking up seems horrifying. But, taking deep breaths in response to this shock helps increase the overall oxygen intake.  In turn, the heart rate increases and releases a rush of blood throughout the body.  Then, we experience an energy boost!

Katherine Hepburn, a famous Hollywood actress, started taking cold showers on a daily basis after being pushed by an eminent urologist and pioneer in social hygiene.  She used to take ice-cold baths as child and continued to do so for the rest of her life.

3. Stimulates Weight Loss

Cold showers help stimulate weight loss in quite a surprising way.  Our bodies are made of two types of fat tissue: white fat and brown fat.  The first one is accumulated while eating more calories than the body needs to function properly.

This fat accumulates in the waist, lower back, thighs, and the neck, and it is one of the most difficult to get rid of.  On the other hand, brown fat is good fat and it generates heat to keep the body warm.  According to Joslin Diabetes Center, it is activated when the body is exposed to cold.

A 2009 study concluded that exposing the body to extremely cold temperatures activated brown fat in 23 subjects by a 15-fold increase. In other words, one could shed up to 9 pounds within a year thanks to this practice.

4. Improves Immunity and Circulation

Due to its ability to stimulate blood to surround the organs, cold water improves circulation, which in turn helps fights off various skin and heart-related problems.

Once cold water hits the body, it helps the blood move around and causes the arteries to pump blood more effectively.  As explained by Dr. Joseph Mercola, this helps lower blood pressure, clear clogged arteries, boost immunity, and improve the overall health.

5. Relieves Depression

It has been scientifically shown that cold showers alleviate depression symptoms, thanks to its effect on the cold receptors in the skin, which sent vast amount of electrical impulses to the brain. In turn, this helps boost mood and provide an anti-depressive effect.

According to a 2008 study, cold hydrotherapy provides an analgesic effect, without any side effects or dependence.  The treatment involved 1-2 cold showers of 38 degrees Fahrenheit, 2-3 minutes long, then followed by a 5-minute adaptation.

6. Eases Stress

Having a cold shower promotes hardening, boosts tolerance to stress and it even protects against disease. According to a 1994 study, subjects exposed to cold stimulus exhibited a drastic decrease in uric acid.

They also showed an increase in glutathione, the master antioxidant that keeps other antioxidants functioning optimally. The subjects who regularly swam in ice-cold water during the winter season adjusted to repeated oxidative stress.

7. Speeds Up Muscle Soreness and Recovery

Taking a cold shower right after a workout can be extremely effective in relieving muscle soreness. A 2009 study that assessed 17 trials involved 35 subjects who either rested or took a cold shower after workout, cycling, or running.

It was found that 24-minute cold shower was effective in alleviating sore muscles 1-4 days after exercises with a water temperature of 50 to 59 degrees Fahrenheit, or 10 to 15 degrees Celsius.

The Essential Oil that Tones your Stomach and Speeds Up Your Metabolism

The Essential Oil that Tones your Stomach and Speeds Up Your Metabolism

Have you ever heard of Patchouli? This less known herb is a bushy herb from the mint family which is known for its rich, sweet fragrance. It is typically used in products like perfumes, air fresheners, laundry detergents, and other scented products.  It also provides a wide plethora of benefits, from reducing the appearances of skin imperfections to boosting metabolism.

The health benefits of the oil obtained from the Patchouli herb can be attributed to its wide-ranging properties, from antiseptic, astringent, antidepressant, sedative, diuretic, and aphrodisiac to cytoplasmic, tonic, deodorant, insecticide, and fungicide.

Health Benefits Of Patchouli Essential Oil

1. Boosts Metabolism

Patchouli oil work as a potent tonic which has the ability to boost the metabolism while toning the intestines, the stomach, and the liver.

2. Reduces Inflammation

Patchouli oil is extremely effective reducing inflammation and soothing irritation. It is beneficial for inflammation-related conditions as well, such as arthritis and gout.

3. Antiseptic

Patchouli essential oil works as preventative measure against infections and protects ulcers and wounds from becoming septic.  This is one of the most outstanding benefits of this patchouli oil, given that many minor wounds increase the risk of serious infections like tetanus.

4. Astringent

This potent oil encourages contractions in the skin, nerves, and muscles. So, it`s no wonder that it prevents sagging of the skin, loosening of the muscle tissues, prevents hair loss, and strengthens the gum of the teeth.

5. Antidepressant

Patchouli oil is ideal for those suffering from depression, anger, sadness, and anxiety as it helps them get over these feelings and gives them hope. This is one of the reasons why this oil is often used in aromatherapy to boost mood and relax tension.

6. Sedative

This powerful oil reduces inflammation and sedates a cough, epileptic attacks, and coughs that stem from hyper-reactivity or hypersensitivity of the nerves.

7. Diuretic

Due to its diuretic properties, patchouli oil increases both the quantity and frequency of urination. Consequently, this helps improve appetite, lower cholesterol levels, lower blood pressure levels,  stimulate weight loss, and eliminate toxic waste from the body.

8. Aphrodisiac

Patchouli oil is ideal for treating sexual problems like loss of libido, frigidity, disinterest in sex, sexual anxiety, erectile dysfunctions, and impotence.

9. Cytophylactic

This property stimulates growth by encouraging the generation of new cells.  It stimulates the production of red blood cells too, which in turn increases energy.  Ultimately, by boosting oxygenation of organs and cells in the body, it increases the overall metabolism.

10. Tonic

As mentioned in the very beginning, patchouli oil acts as tonic which tones up the body, improves metabolic functions like absorption of nutrients, and tones the intestines, liver, and the stomach.

11. Deodorant

Due to its rich, sweet and musky fragrance of this oil, it is effective in eliminating body odor.  But, note that it can be quite strong to some people`s senses, so always use it in a diluted form.

12. Insecticide

Patchouli oil is effective at repelling insects like ants, mosquitoes, flies, moths, fleas, lice, and beg bugs. It is often used in vaporizers, fumigants, body lotions, sprays, and incense sticks.

13. Fungicide

Last but not least, patchouli oil stops fungal infections and growths at their tracks, meaning that it protects against infections like Athlete`s foot.

If You Want to Repel Mosquitoes, Start Growing These Plants in Your Backyard

If You Want to Repel Mosquitoes, Start Growing These Plants in Your Backyard

If you are living in a warm region, the chances are you are constantly being annoyed by insects like mosquitoes.  However, these pests are not only annoying and capable of producing itchy bumps, but they are also highly dangerous. They spread fatal diseases as well, which is the reason why they are often referred as one of the most dangerous animals worldwide.

Here are some of the reasons why mosquitoes are simply the worst!

Mosquitoes put 40% of the world at risk for dengue, which causes “the feeling of broken bones”: Also known as break bone fever, this is the most rapidly mosquito-borne disease worldwide.

Mosquitoes spread yellow fever, which the WHO calls “the original viral hemorrhagic fever”:  It affects more than 200,000 people annually and kills 30,000.

Mosquitoes infect us with nasty bird diseases, like West Nile Virus: About 20 percent of the infected individuals develop a fever accompanied with body aches, joint pain, rash, diarrhea, and vomiting.

Mosquitoes cause permanent disability around the world: Lymphatic filariasis, which is one of the most neglected tropical diseases, is the leading cause of permanent disability worldwide.

Mosquitoes spread malaria, which still causes hundreds of thousands of deaths every year: It is estimated that there has been a dramatic reduction in malaria between 2000 and 2012. Still, about 630,000 people died from malaria in 2012.

With this being said, it`s no wonder that mosquito repellents are one of the most widely used products worldwide. However, it is recommended to skip the chemicals and choose a healthier alternative. The good news is that growing these mosquito-repelling plants near your house is one of the most effective and safest ways to protect yourself from the annoying and dangerous mosquitoes.

HERBS / SPICES

1. Basil

Planting basil nearby helps repel mosquitoes thanks to the essential oils which are obtained from the mosquito repellent spray.

2. Catnip

According to one study, catnip contains an active ingredient which is ten times stronger than the well known DEET repellent.

3. Clove

For a personal repellent, extract oil from cloves and apply directly onto the skin.

4. Garlic

Grate the garlic and sprinkle around the area for protection or mix it with nice-smelling oils for a personal body spray.

5. Lemon balm

Crush the leaves and rub onto the skin for an optimal protection.

6. Lemon thyme

Mosquitoes cannot stand its smell so it repels them effectively and in an all-natural way.

7. Peppermint

You can either plant it in the backyard for protection or rub a leaf onto the skin to relieve the itch.

8. Rosemary

Its oils can be used as an ingredient in a spray, although the plant itself deters mosquitoes effectively.

9. Stone root

This easy-to-grow herb can be crushed and boiled to create a mosquito repellent.

PLANTS

1. Lavender

You can grow this pleasantly-smelling plant in a sunny windowsill.

2. Lemon scented geranium

Plant this plant nearby, crush its leaves, and sprinkle them around your area.

3. Lemon verbena

Both the plant and the oils can be used on the skin to repel mosquitoes.

4. Marigolds

Marigolds are easy to grow and moved to the desired area.