Love, Romance, and Travel Can Be Keys to Health and Longevity

Love and Relationship Tips for Health and Longevity!   Isn't love grand? Besides being exciting and fulfilling, it also turns out that it is good for your health and longevity. Studies and experts agree: having a caring and loving relationship can lead to a healthier, happier and longer life. Traveling with a partner can make it that much better. The health benefits of a loving, caring relationship Experts agree that it takes a happy, calm and stable relationship to yield the best health benefits and they caution that an unhappy relationship can result in negative health consequences. When you do have a positive relationship, here are some of the many benefits according to experts and research: Stronger immune system Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University found that people who exhibit positive emotions are less likely to get sick after exposure to cold or flu viruses Faster healing Ohio State University Medical Center researchers found that blister wounds healed nearly twice as fast in spouses who interacted warmly toward each other. Better cardiovascular health People with stable relationships also tend to have more stable blood pressure. A study in the Annals of Behavioral Medicine found happily married people had the best blood pressure, followed by singles. Unhappily married participants fared the worst. Less depression and substance abuse According to a Health and Human Services report, getting married and staying married reduces depression in both men and women. Marriage also contributes to a decline in heavy drinking and drug abuse, especially among young adults. Longer life A growing body of research indicates that married people live longer. One of the largest studies found that people who had never been married were 58 percent more likely to die than married people. Note that though most studies have focused on marriage, other loving and caring relationships likely have the same benefits - for example, partners, parents, or friends. "There is solid evidence that people who participate in satisfying, long-term relationships fare better on a whole variety of health measures," says Harry Reis, PhD, co-editor of the Encyclopedia of Human Relationships. Other benefits of a healthy, caring relationship include: * Less anxiety * Better fitness * Clearer skin * Natural pain reductions * Better regulated menstrual cycle Boost your longevity even further with travel Travel can help people establish and maintain a healthy lifestyle, says Dr. David Lipschitz, director of the Center on Aging at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. Lipschitz says that the two most important factors for longevity are health and happiness, and travel helps to foster both. Traveling with a spouse or significant other is a great way for couples to stay mentally sharp, reconnect through shared experiences, rekindle romance and increase intimacy. Love and relationship tips When looking for love, many miss out due to trying to find the "perfect partner." As the saying goes, "Perfect love comes not from finding someone perfect to love, but rather finding how to love someone who is imperfect [...]

2018-10-04T12:34:43+00:00 By |

The Importance of Taking Vacations for Recovery, De-stressing and Reflecting

Vacations May Add Years to Your Life!   In the US, close to one in four Americans receive no paid vacation or holidays, leading to a country known as the "no-vacation nation."1 In contrast, countries like Australia and Japan require at least four weeks of paid time off for workers – and some, like France, guarantee six. Do they know something that those in the US are oblivious to? Quite possibly, yes, as taking vacations isn't a matter of mere frivolity; in stressful times like these, they can make or break your physical and mental health. Vacations Help to Buffer the Toll of Stress, Increase Creative Thinking and More Vacation time can be one of the best ways to not only relieve stress but to actually increase productivity and performance on the job. Assuming your vacation is a restful, restorative one (and not a source of stress in and of itself), taking time off gives you a valuable break from the everyday grind, a time to recoup and avoid burnout. According to research from the University of Calgary, taking a vacation (or even participating in leisure activities) can significantly reduce depression.2 A separate study found sharing vacation experiences with your loved ones is a valuable contributor to family cohesion,3 whereas immersing yourself in a different culture may also foster creative thinking4 and improve well-being.5 Still other research by British research Scott McCabe has shown the following vacation benefits:6 Rest and recuperation from work Provision of new experiences leading to a broadening of horizons and the opportunity for learning and intercultural communication Promotion of peace and understanding Personal and social development Visiting friends and relatives Religious pilgrimage and health Subjective well-being A Successful Vacation Is Key to Its Restorative Powers Not all vacations are stress relieving and some may actually leave you more tired than you were to begin with, making you wish you could take a "vacation from your vacation." Only you know what type of vacation will give you that feeling that you've truly gotten away from it all, but generally speaking there are some universal factors that tend to contribute to a restful time off:7 Free time for yourself Warmer, sunnier location Good sleep Making new acquaintances Exercising during vacation If you can find the time and the resources to do so, investing in regular vacations is money well spent, as it will support two things that money can't buy: good health and happiness. Its ability to help relieve stress alone will pay for itself many times over, as stress plays a major role in your immune system, and can positively affect your blood pressure, cholesterol levels, brain chemistry, blood sugar levels, hormonal balance and numerous other biological processes. As the Examiner reported:8 "McCabe believes these positive benefits [of vacation] to be so strong that he recommends that families be given some form of financial assistance if they are unable to afford vacations on their own." My Top Travel Tips In order to [...]

2018-10-04T12:50:33+00:00 By |

Twelve Natural Health Tips for Smart Travel

How to Stay Healthy While Traveling!   Traveling can be hard on your health. Increased stress, changing time zones and difficulty finding healthy food can all negatively impact your health. And if you travel by air, you have the added problems of exposure to airborne pathogens, fragrance chemicals, and other pollutants brought into your air space by unhealthy people. On top of that, there's the additional difficulty of bringing all your health supplements, superfoods and appliances with you (a Vita-Mix is heavy!). So how can you protect yourself from sickness and environmental stress when traveling while still providing yourself with your most important health supplements and superfoods? Being an experienced traveler myself, I'll share with you my best tips for maximizing your health when traveling on planes, trains or automobiles. Tip #1: Boost your immune system before you go Don't dare walk into an airport, train station or other public place without protecting your immune system first. How do you accomplish that? It's simple: For at least three days before your trip, start drinking lots of vegetable juice and taking immune-boosting herbal supplements. It's even better if you're drinking fresh juices every day as a regular habit, but if you're not, at least kick in the healthful juices before you travel. On the supplements side, I like to take Kyolic garlic supplements (www.Kyolic.com), medicinal mushrooms (www.MushroomScience.com), Echinacea, goldenseal, ginger and other similar immune herbs (www.BaselineNutritionals.com). It's also important to get plenty of zinc in your diet by eating pumpkin seeds or taking high-quality zinc supplements. Taking lots of vitamin C and vitamin D3 is also helpful, but be sure to get them from high-quality supplements (I don't recommend cheap multivitamins like the Centrum brand). The best sources for high-end individual supplements are www.WellnessResources.com and www.LivingFuel.com (check out their Super Essentials fish oils with astaxanthin. Tip #2: Bring superfood powders for instant meals Having superfood powders with you at all times is a great travel strategy, even if you're just traveling to a relative's house for a few days (your relatives probably aren't as health conscious as you are, right?). Don't clobber your immune system by eating the junk in their refrigerator; bring your own superfoods and amaze (or annoy) your friends and relatives with your own astonishing commitment to a truly healthful diet! Which superfood products should you bring? There are a lot of them I recommend, including Living Fuel (www.LivingFuel.com), Boku Superfood (www.BokuSuperfood.com), Healthforce Nutritionals (www.HealthForce.com), HempShake (www.Nutiva.com), Emerald Balance (www.SGNnutrition.com) and Delicious Greens (www.Greens8000.com). There's even a new product I just saw at Whole Foods called Amazing Meal (www.AmazingGrass.com). I haven't tried it yet, but I know their Amazing Grass product is high quality, and I intend on reviewing their Amazing Meal product soon. The point is to bring a lot of nutritious foods with you in a highly concentrated form. There's no form more concentrated than dried superfood powders. Just add water, shake it up, and you've got a meal! Tip #3: [...]

2018-09-19T14:12:02+00:00 By |

Want to Know How to Sleep Well Your First Night of Travel?

Learn How to Beat Jet Lag When You Travel!   Whether you're traveling two hours or 12 hours, your first night of sleep in a new bed is usually not restful. While some of the difficulty you'll experience when you travel is linked to jet lag, there is another factor. Research published in Current Biology has found that the first night effect (FNE) of disturbed sleep, often regarded as a typical sleep disturbance when sleeping in a bed other than your own, is actually the result of interhemispheric asymmetry.1,2 In other words, one hemisphere of your brain is more vigilant during sleep than the other side in order to monitor your unfamiliar surroundings during sleep. These findings, the result of advanced neuroimaging techniques, explain why your first night at a hotel or your relatives' doesn't always give you the rest you need. Left Brain, Right Brain Your brain is the most complex organ in your body, responsible for controlling and monitoring all your systems. Your brain is made up of two halves, commonly called the left and right side. The medical term for "side" is "hemisphere." The right hemisphere of your brain controls the left side of your body, and vice versa. A typical healthy brain will have approximately 200 billion nerve cells and hundreds of trillions of connections, called synapses.3 Electrical impulses travel over synapses, relaying information. Only recently has the technology been available to examine those synapses and determine and categorize their function. The number and strength of active synapses fluctuate at different times in your life and with waking and sleeping.4 In general, the left and right hemispheres of your brain process information differently. But to function and communicate, the two sides must work together to see the whole picture and then the details. Left-brain thinkers are often more analytical and verbal, while right-brain thinkers are more non-verbal and intuitive. Left-brain thinkers are logical and right-brain thinkers are creative. One side of the brain is not superior over the other, and both are needed to give you a balanced approach to evaluating any given situation. Sleep Cycles At one time, sleep was considered an inactive or passive state when both your body and brain were in the "off" position. Today, we know it is during sleep that your brain does most of the housekeeping duties, getting rid of damaging toxins.5 This house cleaning reduces your risk of Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia as you age. During sleep, your brain goes through characteristic cycles of activity, affecting your perception of quality, restful sleep. The two most distinctive cycles are rapid eye movement (REM) and non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep cycles. Many sleep experts believe that you dream more frequently and more vividly during REM sleep. Your pattern of REM to NREM sleep is distinctive during the night. The average length of time in the first REM/NREM cycle is between 70 and 100 minutes, while the second and later cycles are usually between [...]

2018-09-18T17:14:18+00:00 By |

Pathogens on Planes: How to Stay Healthy in Flight

Everything You Need to Know About Staying Healthy While Traveling   One major US airline estimates that its aircraft fly an average of nearly six flights per day. With, let's say, an average of 137 people on each flight, that's 822 people per day that may pass through any one plane. After a week, that exposure rises to more than 5,700 people, each with the potential to share their own possibly pathogenic bacteria, viruses, and other microbes with the aircraft seats, tray tables, toilet, arm rests, and virtually every other surface on the plane. Considering that some of the nastiest microbes, like MRSA and E. coli O157, can last about a week and four days on surfaces, respectively,1 it's enough to make anyone want to douse themselves in hand sanitizer upon exiting the plane. Yet, if it were really that bad, virtually everyone would get sick after flying, which, of course, isn't the case. I fly at least once a month (this month I have flown seven times, though). But I am not concerned because I strengthen my immune system with a healthy lifestyle. Most Infectious Disease Is Transmitted by Touching a Contaminated Surface When in an airplane's cramped quarters, one of the most common concerns is that someone sneezing has the potential to infect the whole plane, especially since about 50 percent of the cabin air is recycled. This is possible but unlikely for a couple of reasons. For starters, according to Dr. Mark Gendreau, who specializes in aviation medicine at Lahey Medical Center in Massachusetts, airplanes have high-tech air filters that remove more than 99 percent of microbes from the air, and even then the ventilation is compartmentalized so that it only circulates to part of the cabin.2 Second, the most common way for you to be infected with a disease is by touching a contaminated surface, then transferring the germ to your eyes, nose, or mouth. This is true whether you're in an airplane or any other public space, and is the reason why washing your hands, with plain soap and water, is so important to reduce your risk of contracting an infectious disease. Because the water on airplanes may not be the most pure (one study by the US Environmental Protection Agency found fecal bacteria in 15 percent of the drinking water on planes it tested3), Dr. Gendreau recommends taking the extra step of sanitizing your hands with a waterless hand sanitizer after washing them. If you opt for this step, be sure to use a toxin-free, natural brand. One trick I use in an airport is to only use restrooms that don't have doors. This is most of the ones in newer airport terminals. Oddly, if you go into the expensive and private airport lounges you have to touch the doors. So I nearly always use the main airport restrooms and avoid touching bathroom doors. I also tend to refrain from touching the handrails on escalators and will always seek [...]

2018-09-04T17:36:40+00:00 By |

The First Thing to Do When You Stay in a Hotel Room

Follow These Important Tips to Stay Healthy During Travel   Microbiologist Philip Tierno, when he has to stay in hotels, travels with an impervious mattress and pillow cover. Lurking in every hotel mattress are skin cells, human hair, bodily secretions, fungi, bacteria, dust, dust mites, lint, insect parts, pollen, and cosmetics. Tierno encourages everyone to use the impervious covers developed for allergy sufferers. And he also advises that you definitely get rid of the bedspread. The first thing he does is remove the comforter and store it in the closet. CNN reports: "It's certainly true that bedspreads, or the quilts inside duvet covers, don't get thrown in with the sheets for a daily wash ... Germs ... tend to congregate in places touched multiple times by multiple people that may not be cleaned thoroughly, if at all". While it is impossible to live in a germ-free environment, using toxic chemicals to achieve this is fraught with dangers and is not at all recommended. However it is best to pay attention to some well documented sources of pathogens that can easily be avoided with simple non-chemical measures. Travel is one area that you can make some dramatic improvements. Cleaning a hotel room is not a glamorous or high paying job, and my guess is the hardworking people laboring away at this task are at best just applying the minimum standard of care in their daily grind. Just making the beds is hard enough! I don't expect them to wash every bedspread, nor do I expect management to pay for such an expense on a daily basis. This is made clear by microbiologist Philip Tierno, quoted in the article above: "In hotel rooms that aren't properly disinfected, some of the germiest areas tend to be the faucet and sink areas, the flusher of the toilet, the underside of the toilet seat and the shower floor." "Improper cleaning techniques, such as using the same rag in the bathroom and on the remote control, can spread germs around. Cleaning in a 'cavalier manner' doesn't happen only in lower-end hotels. "[But at the same time] there's no raging problem of communicable diseases contracted in hotels. Exposure to germs in hotel rooms is generally nothing some timely and thorough hand washing can't fix, and of the 60,000 types of germs people might encounter over the course of their lives, only one percent or two percent are capable of causing disease." So although hotel rooms may be germy, they really can't be considered dangerous. There are also some sensible precautions you can take yourself when you find yourself in a hotel room. Sensible Precautions when Traveling Some simple and easy sensible things to do when you find yourself in a hotel room include: Turn down the top comforter or duvet cover (depending on which you encounter) and pull it to the end of the bed, avoid coming into contact with it as much as you can. Wipe down the sink faucets, bathroom [...]

2018-08-24T11:05:19+00:00 By |

Stay Healthy During Your Vacation

Astaxanthin Helps You Avoid Getting Sick When Traveling   Travel can increase the stress on your immune system, even if it's for fun. If you're not careful, you may come home from your trip with an unwelcome memento - like a cold or flu. Some people even expect to get sick during a trip. But it doesn't have to be that way! It's very important to take care of your immune health while traveling, whether it's for business or pleasure. Acupressure is the practice of pressing or massaging certain points on your body, which can stimulate your body's self-curative abilities. CNN Go has collected a list of 8 Acupoints1, which could be useful for travelers. Here are a few: Motion sickness and nausea: Press on the inside of your forearm, two thumbs' width above your wrist crease, between the two tendons. The point is actually located below surface level so pushing deep is more effective. Sore throat and lightheadedness: Loosely interlock your thumbs at the webbing, with both palms facing down. Keep your wrists straight, and extend your index finger to the skinny edge of your wrist. Under the pad of your index finger you'll find a small depression in the prominent bone; that's the point. Rubbing or pressing this point relieves symptoms associated with colds. Insomnia or disturbed dreams: Find the styloid process muscle on the side of your neck, and follow it up to where it meets your skull. The point is at the A-like depression going toward the back of your head. For the complete list, please review the original article.2 Does Flying Increase Your Chances of Getting Sick? Occasional travel exposes you to environmental toxins and pathogens that you aren't routinely exposed to - new people, new places, and toxic airplane cabin air. If you have a strong immune system, your body will be able to handle these insults without much trouble. But if your immune system is compromised, you can end up getting sick. Air travel, with its frequent delays, security hassles, cramped quarters, and jet lag effects, can be stressful, but does it inherently make you more likely to contract an infectious illness? A recent WHO report found there is no evidence that recirculation of cabin air facilitates the transmission of infectious disease agents on board. Additionally, a University of California, San Francisco study found recycled air on short-term flightsis no more likely to cause colds than flights using fresh air. The researchers interviewed 1,100 passengers before and one week after an approximate two-hour flight and reported that the frequency of colds and runny noses were virtually the same between recycled air and fresh air flyers. As that report confirmed, it is the strength of your body's own immune system that determines whether or not you will get sick. The infectious bacteria and viruses that circulate around an airplane cabin are merely triggers for an already weakened immune system. Cold and flu viruses can last up to 72 hours [...]

2018-08-15T16:22:42+00:00 By |

An Introduction to Nice, France

Nice is one of the surrounding cities on the French Riviera. Many tourists include this city on their bucket lists because of the beautiful sceneries on the Promenade des Anglais and its popular waterfront. This ethnically diverse city has a lot to offer its visitors from all walks of life. Brief History The city’s origin is found among the ruins of Gallo-Roman, perched in the hills of boulevard de Cimiez. Here you could also find some museums and a monastery, but as of today, most of its inhabitants live closer to the sea. Originally, the city was only a portion of the Italian Duchy of Savoy and later on, the Kingdom of Sardinia until its unwilling surrender to France in 1860. The ancient mother tongue is Nissart, but everybody speaks French; not everyone knows how to speak English, so it’s a must to learn the language of La’mour. Sites to See The Colline du Chateau rising above the Bay of Angels and the harbor gives a picturesque viewpoint overlooking the city. There isn’t much left of the ruined castle, but a climb up the stairs gives a better vantage point. If you take a ride on the lift, you would have saved at least 75 percent of the climb. Be careful not to stay after sunset because the park closes around this time and they may have you escorted out. But for the best view of Nice, you don’t want to miss out on the heights of Mont Boron. Your eyes will surely feast on the spectacular views from the old fort, the Villa of Sir Elton John, Cap Ferat and Villefranche. Museums Nice is a city also known for its many museums, most of which has no entrance fee. Here are some of the most popular ones: Museum of Asian Art , 405 Promenade des Anglais: for those people who appreciate world art (No entrance fee) Parc Phoenix, 405 Promenade des Anglais: for those who love plants and animals (€2 Entrance Fee) Musee Chagall: for people fascinated with stained glass (€9.50 Entrance Fee) Muse Matisse, 164 Ave des Arenes de Cimiez: to feast your eyes on a charming collection of drawings, paintings and sculptures in the 17th century (free entrance) Beaches Coming to Nice for sunbathing or lounging out on the beach is not ideal. Its beaches mainly consist of flat stones known as gallets. Although the city has a couple private beaches that have been covered with layers of sand, the public beaches are a callous stony experience. You should bring sandals or slippers for walking, aside from towels and mats. Taking a shower is free and you can enjoy playing beach volleyball in an area filled with white sand. Even if the shoreline is mainly gallets, many visitors still enjoy swimming in the clear blue waters, although you have to be a strong swimmer as the beach floor drops quickly and the tidal pull is strong. Other towns have nicer sandy beaches [...]

2018-04-02T22:14:25+00:00 By |

Best Countryside Destination in the UK

Fall has arrived and with winter right round the corner, it is time to think holidays. And what better way holidays can be spent than by travelling to the wonderful destinations that the world has to offer. If you come to think of it, the United Kingdom is filled to the brim with some wonderful holiday destinations that can take your breath away. The countryside, for example, has a lot to offer. Be it the occasional traveller, or the enthusiastic backpacker or a whole family, UK’s countryside is a picturesque treat to everyone. In this article, we will discuss a few exquisite holiday destinations in the beautiful countryside of the UK. Let’s find out more. Rural Lancashire Rural Lancashire in Britain is famous for the Crook O’Lune viewpoint. It offers a remarkable view of the River Lune that makes a great curve. This curve will remind you of the Dordogne’s Cingle de Trémolat. The splendid view stretches to the Yorkshire Dales. The colours that view offer are bright hues of greens, browns and blues and you would find yourself immersed in the calmness and the beauty of it all in seconds. In addition, the bustling farmer’s markets are a great place to find fresh produce. You can also follow the Lancashire cheese Trail or the Ribble Valley Food Trail to satiate your culinary side. The food there is absolutely lip-smacking and is bound to leave a smile on your face. Apart from that, the forest of Bowland is an absolute treat. You must visit that you imbibe in the greenery and the wildlife. Canterbury This partly walled city has a lot offer. Canterbury is quite reputed for its breathtaking cathedral. Apart from that, you can plan a visit to the coastal town of Whistable or a day outing to Calais right from Dover. While you are in Canterbury, you must pay a visit to the City Wall Trail. It goes halfway around the city and takes about a couple of hours to finish this visit. Canterbury is great destination for walking or cycling and could be a bit crowded with tourists in the holiday season. The narrow lanes and the shops are great to walk through. Take a day trip or cycle through the picturesque city. There’s so much to do in this city if you look in the right places. Wistman’s Wood Located in Devon, Wistman’s Wood is an exquisite place to be. It is the burst of fresh greenery that would greet you and beckon you to explore more. You can indulge your senses in the peace and quiet of the woods and give in to nature. The mosses, ferns, lichens and trees will take your breath away. The trees in the Wistman’s Wood are stunted owing to the harsh weather. The oaks do not grow taller than 12 feet. Wistman’s Wood is managed by Natural England. Wistman’s Wood is located right at the centre of Dartmoor National Park, which is situated on [...]

2018-04-02T22:06:50+00:00 By |