Posts tagged: health essentials

Top 6 Essential Oil Diffuser Blends For Well Being

Top 6 Essential Oil Diffuser Blends For Well Being
Graphic: © herbs-info.com. Image source – Pixabay (PD).

When it comes to essential oils, the possible aromatherapy combinations are nearly endless. But the wide range of options can also leave you confused. To ease your troubles, here are 6 of the best essential oil diffuser blends for different scenarios.

1. Calming

Ingredients:
⦁ Lavender – 3 drops
⦁ Geranium – 3 drops
⦁ Roman chamomile – 2 drops
⦁ Clary sage – 2 drops
⦁ Ylang-ylang – 2 drops

Try this to calm down after a long stressful day. Some of the essentials oils have been shown to improve sleep, remedy pain & inflammation, and balance the heart rate. [1][2][3]

2. Bliss

Ingredients:
⦁ Wild orange – 3 drops
⦁ Grapefruit – 3 drops
⦁ Lemon – 2 drops
⦁ Bergamot – 1 drop

This essential oil blend is perfect for relaxing your mind and uplifting your mood. Consider using the blend when you have visitors over for a fun experience.

3. Stress be Gone

Ingredients:
⦁ Lavender – 4 drops
⦁ Clary Sage – 3 drops
⦁ Ylang-ylang – 2 drops
⦁ Marjoram – 1 drop

Feeling drained? Research shows that some of the ingredients in this essential oil diffuser blend help relieve emotional stress, nervous tension, depression, headaches, and anxiety. [4]

4. Joyful

Ingredients:
⦁ Joyful blend – 4 drops
⦁ Invigorating blend – 4 drops

Looking to boost your energy, optimism, and feeling of well-being? The joyful essential oil diffuser blend might be what you need. It contains euphoric and refreshing scents that elevate your mood and vitality.

5. Energy

Ingredients:
⦁ Peppermint – 4 drops
⦁ Wild orange – 4 drops

Use this peppermint and wild orange blend to reduce fatigue and improve energy levels. [5]

6. Focus

Ingredients:
⦁ Frankincense – 2 drops
⦁ Vetiver – 2 drops
⦁ Grounding blend – 4 drops

This blend of ingredients is designed to improve brain function and help you focus on a task. For example, a study in the Journal of Intercultural Ethnopharmacology, suggests that inhaling vetiver oil may help you focus and improve brain alertness. [6]

Please note that this content should never be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinicians.

References:

[1] Effects of aromatherapy on sleep quality and anxiety of patients https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/nicc.12198.

[2] Patented antiinflammatory plant drug development from traditional medicine https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/ptr.1475.

[3] Salamati A. et al. 2017. Effect of Inhalation of Lavender Essential Oil on Vital Signs in Open Heart Surgery ICU https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5423266/.

[4] Malcolm BJ. 2018. Essential oil of lavender in anxiety disorders: Ready for prime time? https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29955514.

[5] Kennedy D. et al. 2018. Volatile Terpenes and Brain Function: Investigation of the Cognitive and Mood Effects of Mentha × Piperita L. Essential Oil with In Vitro Properties Relevant to Central Nervous System Function. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30087294.

[6] Modification of sleep-waking and electroencephalogram induced by vetiver essential oil inhalation https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4805151/.

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Top 6 Essential Oil Diffuser Blends For Well Being
Graphic ©herbs-info.com. Image source – Pixabay (PD).

Study Finds Tai Chi Can Reduce Risk Of Dangerous Falls For The Elderly By Up To 64%

Study Finds Tai Chi Can Reduce Risk Of Dangerous Falls For The Elderly By Up To 64%
Graphic – herbs-info.com Image sources – see foot of article

According to the well-known U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, one in three American adults age over 65 falls each year. Some of these falls are fatal, with older adults more susceptible to risk for falls due to lack of exercise, diseases, medications, and vision problems. This danger is cited as one of the leading causes of injury and death in elderly people. [1]

A fascinating study published in May 2017 revealed that seniors who practice tai chi, a Chinese meditation practice, may be less likely to fall than their peers who don’t engage themselves in this type of exercise. [2] This study presents evidence on the role of tai chi in improving balance and preventing falls, especially for older adults.

The authors claim that their study is the most comprehensive systematic review that has yet evaluated tai chi for preventing falls. They considered data from other recently published trials to improve the precision of the estimated effects of tai chi on fall prevention. They divided the study’s participants in two groups – one group received tai chi lessons while another group didn’t get the intervention.

The researchers confirmed the link between tai chi and lower risk of falling when they accounted several factors including the frequency of practicing tai chi, the amount of time spent on doing the exercises, the style of tai-chi used, and the falling risk for individual patients. When the frequency of tai chi sessions was increased, spectacular improvements were noted – with risk reduction improved twelve-fold – or from 5% to 64%.

Previous studies have shown the value of tai chi for improving balance, flexibility, and strength of knee extension in older adults, according to Dr. Chenchen Wang of the Center for Complimentary and Integrative Medicine at Tufts Medical Center. Wang cited several components of tai chi that contribute to the meditation’s fall prevention impact – including breathing techniques, awareness of the body, balance, mindfulness, and relaxation. [3]

This work builds upon research undertaken in previous studies: In 2008, a Chinese study demonstrated the significant protective effect of tai chi on fall risk among older adults. [4] The study proposed the development of optimal tai chi training programs for older adults.

In 2005, American researchers evaluated the efficacy of a 6-month tai chi prevention for decreasing the risk of falling in older persons. [5] They concluded that a tai chi program could improve functional balance and performance in sedentary persons aged 70 years or older.

Findings from other studies also highlight the potential of tai chi in improving mental balance and reducing stress. There is a growing body of carefully conducted research that posits tai chi as an adjunct standard medical treatment for medical conditions commonly associated with age. One of them is arthritis which affects 54.4 million American adults, according to the CDC. [6] Tai chi is recommended by the health agency as an exercise program to improve the quality of life of arthritis sufferers. [7]

The financial toll from falls among older adults amounted to an astonishing $31 billion in 2015. Costs are expected to increase as the population of U.S. seniors is projected to reach 20% of the country’s population by 2030. [8] This scenario underlines the economic impact of tai chi, which appears set to play an important role in preventing falls and other chronic conditions.

References::

[1] U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. October 11, 2016. Important Facts About Falls https://www.cdc.gov/homeandrecreationalsafety/falls/adultfalls.html

[2] Zhi-Guan H et al. 2017. British Medical Journal Open. Systematic review and meta-analysis: Tai Chi for preventing falls in older adults http://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/7/2/e013661

[3] Park M and Song R. 2013. Journal of Korean Academy of Nursing. Effects of Tai Chi on fall risk factors: a meta-analysis https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23893224

[4] Yu-Ning H et al. September 2016. International Journal of Gerontology. Effect of Tai Chi Exercise on Fall Prevention in Older Adults: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1873959816300746

[5] Li F. 2005. The Journals of Gerontology. Series A, Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences. Tai Chi and fall reductions in older adults: a randomized controlled trial https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15814861

[6] U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2015. Arthritis-Related Statistics https://www.cdc.gov/arthritis/data_statistics/arthritis-related-stats.htm

[7] U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Arthritis: Intervention Watchlist https://www.cdc.gov/arthritis/interventions/program_lists.htm

[8] Liz Mineo. April 15, 2017. Harvard Gazette. The balance in healthy aging http://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2017/04/tai-chi-can-prevent-elderly-from-falls-add-mental-agility/

Infographic photo sources:

Pixabay.com (PD)

Do You Know The Difference Between Underactive And Overactive Thyroid?

Do-You-Know-The-Difference-Between-Hypothyroidism-and-Hyperthyroidism
Infographic – © healthinfocus.net. Herbal images – Wikimedia commons (see foot of page for sources)

Check out this chart and list of underachieve and overactive thyroid symptoms – and try not to get confused by the similarity of the terms “hypo” (which means “too little”) and “hyper” (which means “too much” of something). To remember it – just think of someone who is hyperactive – they show too much activity.

Note that a few of the symptoms of these conditions are the same. Please note also that this is not medical advice and not a substitute for a real professional diagnosis. If you have these symptoms, you should get a medical checkup and your doctor can perform the tests to measure your actual levels of thyroid hormones, plus any other relevant tests you may need.

Hypothyroidism (Underactive Thyroid):
Dry, coarse hair
Loss of eyebrow hair
Puffy face
Enlarged thyroid (goiter)
Slow heartbeat
Weight gain
Constipation
Nails splitting
Arthritis risk increased
Cold intolerance
Depression / moodiness
Dry skin
Fatigue
Forgetfulness
Infertility
Heavy menstrual periods
Muscle aches
Moodiness.

Hyperthyroidism (Overactive Thyroid):
Hair loss
Bulging eyes (Graves Disease)
Enlarged thyroid (goiter)
Rapid heartbeat
Sweating
Weight loss
Frequent bowel
movement
Warm, moist palms
Tremors
Soft / splitting nails
Sleeping disorder
Heat intolerance
Irritability
Muscle weakness
Nervousness
Irregular menstrual periods.

For More Thyroid Tips: check out our other page 10 Signs You May Have A Thyroid Problem (And 10 Things You Can Do About It)

Infographic info sources (lic. under Creative Commons:)

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Starr_070815-8055_Bacopa_monnieri.jpg
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Eleutherococcus_senticosus.jpg
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Fucus_vesiculosus_Wales.jpg
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