Mindfulness And Calming Your Thoughts

 

 

 

 

In the rush to accomplish necessary tasks and manage our daily lives, we often find ourselves losing our connection with the present moment—missing out on what we are doing and how we are feeling. Did you notice whether you felt well-rested this morning or that your new rose bloomed today? You can improve your life with simple mindfulness practices.

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is the practice of purposely focusing our attention on the present moment—and accepting it without judgment. Mindfulness is now being examined scientifically and has been found to be a key element in stress reduction and overall happiness.

It generally involves a heightened awareness of sensory stimuli (really noticing your breathing, feeling the sensations of your body, etc.) and being “in the moment.”

While mindfulness has origins in Eastern philosophy, there is no necessary religious component to mindfulness. Anyone with any belief system can enjoy the benefits of mindfulness.

What Are the Benefits of Mindfulness?

Increasing our capacity for mindfulness supports many attitudes that contribute to a satisfied life. Being mindful makes it easier to savor the pleasures in life as they occur, helps us to become fully engaged in activities, and creates a greater capacity to deal with adverse events. By focusing on the here and now, many people who practice mindfulness find that they are less likely to get caught up in worries about the future or regrets over the past, are less preoccupied with concerns about success and self-esteem, and are better able to form deep connections with others.

If greater well-being isn’t enough of an incentive, scientists have discovered that mindfulness techniques help improve physical health in a number of ways. Mindfulness can help relieve stress, lower blood pressure, reduce chronic pain,  improve sleep, and alleviate gastrointestinal difficulties.

Even an informal approach to mindfulness can help us to stay in the present and fully participate in life. You can choose any task or moment to practice informal mindfulness, whether you are eating, showering, walking, or playing with a child.

An Informal Approach to Mindfulness

  • Start by bringing your attention to the sensations in your body
  • Breathe in through your nose, allowing the air downward into your lower belly. Let your abdomen expand fully.
  • Now breathe out through your mouth
  • Notice the sensations of each inhalation and exhalation
  • Proceed with the task at hand slowly and with full deliberation
  • Engage your senses fully. Notice each sight, touch, and sound so that you savor every sensation.
  • When you notice that your mind has wandered from the task at hand, gently bring your attention back to the sensations of the moment.

Mindful tea-drinking practice

Frequently, even short periods of meditation can seem overwhelming at first. So bringing mindfulness to everyday activities such as drinking a cup of tea is a gentle way to begin. It’s also a helpful way to develop your practice. Below are a few suggestions on how to practice mindful tea-drinking.

1. Be open to your senses, rather than try to analyze what’s happening as you prepare the water for tea-making.

2. Notice the feeling of being in your environment.

3. When your mind wanders into thought, as it probably will, gently return your attention to sensing.

4. Be aware of your sensations and the liking or disliking of them. If there are thoughts, let them enter into and then pass through your mind without following them. Try to stay with the tea tasting. Notice without judgement any desire to rush the drinking, and any impatience that comes.

5. Bring gentle awareness to whatever emerges. Becoming conscious of how much the mind wanders is a sign of growing awareness. Be open to the spirit of the practice, sensing with gentle precision what’s happening, moment by moment, and coming back to sensing whenever you notice you’ve drifted into thought.

The key is understanding what drives your patterns of behavior and then learn how to shift them to serve you instead of holding you back.

Focus on the present and quiet that voice inside – the one that offers the running commentary on what you’re doing, what you’ve done, and what you will be doing. When we focus on fulfillment over achievement, we will enjoy the journey.

 

Race Across America-Win With Bemer!

RAMM-Race Across America on a bike

For 36 years RAAM has been challenging ultracyclists from around the globe to push their physical and mental limits to the farthest reaches. Starting in Oceanside, under one of the longest piers in California, RAAM spans 3000 miles, climbs 175,000 feet, crosses 12 states and finishes in Annapolis, Maryland, the east coast sailing mecca.

 

The route travels west to east, traversing three major mountain ranges (Sierra, Rocky and Appalachian), crosses four of America’s longest rivers (Colorado, Mississippi, Missouri and Ohio) and the Great Plains.  Also, passing through such iconic American landmarks as the Mojave and Sonoran Deserts, Monument Valley, Great Plains and Gettysburg.

 

Open to amateur and professional racers, in solo, 2-, 4- and 8-person relay teams, there is no other race in the world comparable to RAAM. The Race has become a global icon, having had over 35 countries represented. Not only has RAAM proved to be one of the most challenging races in the world, but has become a huge platform for racers to raise awareness and money for charities of their choice.

A RAAM 2016 team was co-sponsored by BEMER with four top level bike riders.

  • The race lasted only 5 days, traveling 24/7 from Oceanside, California to the Annapolis, Maryland….over 3,000 miles of distance.
  • Our racers changed places every 17-22 min. throughout the race. The racer would then use the BEMER before and after every leg of their participation.
  • Early in the race, riders faced 116 degree temps in Arizona on the pavement. The riders feel that BEMER helped them stay hydrated throughout the race.
  • RAAM was the ‘first ever road race in America’ assisted by BEMER.
  • RESULTS- OUR TEAM WON THE RACE in our division of Four Man/Woman teams. In addition, our Four Person team also beat the competitors in the Eight man/woman teams by a 16 minute margin

Becoming an official RAAM finisher means claiming ultra-racing’s most coveted jersey and medal…and, for the lucky few that win their race division, the prized USA plaque…and being among the elite family who call themselves RAAM Finishers.  RAAM will always sit at the pinnacle of ultra-racing accomplishments!

How does this affect YOU? Well, our team used BEMER Physical Vascular Therapy during every step of their trek and YOU CAN, TOO!

FIND OUT HOW YOU CAN BENEFIT EVERY DAY AND HAVE THIS TECHNOLOGY IN YOUR HOME!

 

Interpreting Your Blood Pressure

HOW TO INTERPRET YOUR BLOOD PRESSURE

Blood pressure is the pressure of your blood on the walls of your arteries as your heart pumps it around your body. It’s an important part of how the circulation of your blood and your heart works. Your blood pressure doesn’t stay constant throughout the day. It is lowest when you’re at rest (e.g. sleeping) , and rises when you get up and start being physically active. It can also go up when you are elated, happy, stressed, nervous depending on your emotions.

What do the numbers mean?

It is everyone’s desire to have a healthy, “normal” blood pressure. But what exactly does that mean? When a medical professional takes your blood pressure, it’s expressed as a measurement with two numbers, with one number on top and one on the bottom, like a fraction. For example, 120/80.

The top number refers to the amount of pressure in your arteries during contraction of your heart muscle. This is called systolic pressure. The bottom number refers to your blood pressure when your heart muscle is between beats. This is called diastolic pressure. Both numbers are important in determining the state of your heart.

If you have higher numbers than the ideal range, that would be an indication that your heart is working too hard to pump blood to the rest of your body.

Blood pressure readings: What’s normal and when is it high blood pressure?

A healthy blood pressure reading should ideally be lower than 120/80 mmHg. Normal blood pressure is less than 120 mmHg systolic and 80 mmHg diastolic (see blood pressure chart below), and may vary from 90/60mmHg to 120/80mmHg in a healthy young woman. However, a blood pressure of 140/90 mmHg or higher indicates high blood pressure.

Categories for blood pressure levels

Categories for Blood Pressure Levels in Adults (Aged 18 Years and Older)
Blood Pressure Level (mmHg)
Category Systolic Diastolic
Normal BP < 120 and < 80
High-Normal BP 130 or 80 – 89
High Blood Pressure
Stage 1 Hypertension 140 – 159 or 90 – 99
Stage 2 Hypertension 160 or 100
* Isolated Systolic Hypertension > 140 and < 90

 

Notes:​

  1. When systolic and diastolic blood pressures fall into different categories, the higher category should be used to classify blood pressure level. For example, 160/80 mmHg would be stage 2 hypertension (high blood pressure).
  2. ​*Isolated systolic hypertension is graded according to the same level of systolic BP.

Measuring blood pressure at home

Can you measure your own blood pressure? Of course, you can. You can measure your own blood pressure at home with a digital blood pressure device that can be purchased at most pharmacies. One should carefully read all instructions. To find out if you have made correct reading, you may wish to calibrate it with your family doctor. Remember to take note of your readings most especially if you have higher measurements. When is the best time to take the measurement? It should be when you are at rest.

Here are some tips that will help in ensuring the accuracy of your blood pressure reading:

  • Sit in a comfortable position
  • Place your left arm, raised to the level of your heart, on a table or desk
  • Wrap the cuff of the monitor smoothly and snugly around the upper part of your bare arm.

Some Points to Ponder

Keeping your blood pressure in the normal range is crucial in preventing complications, such as heart disease and stroke. A combination of healthy lifestyle habits and medications can help lower your blood pressure. Weight loss is also important in keeping your numbers down.

Remember that a single blood pressure reading doesn’t necessarily classify your health in stone. Blood pressure readings taken over time are the most accurate. This is why it’s ideal to have your blood pressure taken by a healthcare professional at least once a year, or more often if your readings are high.

HOW TO PREVENT FALLS IN ELDERLY

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Falls In Elderly Account For 70% of Accidental Deaths in Older Population

A fall can change your life. Falls in elderly can lead to disability and a loss of independence.  Falls can cause physical and financial devastation. It’s critical to assess older adults’ strength, balance, and mobility to determine individual fall risk and educate all about fall prevention. The risk and frequency of falls increase with age and can lead to death.

A single fall is not always a sign of a major problem. The fall may simply be an isolated event. However, recurrent falls, defined as more than two falls in a six-month period, should be evaluated by a healthcare professional for treatable causes. Each year, millions of older people—those 65 and older—fall and less than half report this to their doctor.  Falling once doubles your chances of falling again.

Risk Factors for Falls In Elderly

A risk factor is something that increases a person’s risk or susceptibility to a medical problem or disease.

As the number of risk factors rises, so does the risk of falling. Many falls in elderly are linked to a person’s physical condition or a medical problem, such as a chronic disease. Other causes could be safety hazards in the person’s home or community environment. Here are the most important risk factors in the elderly that lead to falls:

  1.  Low blood pressure
  2. Vitamin D deficiency
  3. Medications and/or alcohol
  4. Vision problems
  5. Foot problems or footwear
  6. Fear of falling
  7. Home hazards
  8. Hypoglycemia
  9. Seizures
  10. Cognitive impairment
  11. Sensory deficits

Make Safety A Habit

Although falls can happen anywhere, well over half of all falls in elderly happen at home. Falls at home often happen while a person is doing normal daily activities. Some of these falls are caused by factors in the person’s living environment.

Other factors that can lead to falls at home include
  • loose rugs
  • clutter on the floor or stairs
  • carrying heavy or bulky things up or down stairs
  • not having stair railings
  • not having grab bars in the bathroom

Here are improvements to make in your living environment to improve your safety and prevent falls in elderly:

An important step toward preventing falls at home is to remove anything that could cause a trip or slip while walking. Tripping on clutter, small furniture, pet bowls, electrical or phone cords, or other things can cause a fall.  Slipping on rugs or slick floors can also cause falls.

Arrange furniture to allow plenty of room to walk freely. Also remove items from stairs, hallways, and pathways.

Be sure that carpets are secured to the floor and stairs. Remove throw rugs, use non-slip rugs, or attach rugs to the floor with double-sided tape.

Put non-slip strips on floors of bathtub and shower.

Be careful when walking outdoors and avoid going out alone on ice or snow. A simple slip on a slick sidewalk, a curb, or icy stairs could result in a serious injury.

During the winter, ask someone to spread sand or salt on icy surfaces. Be sure to wear boots with good traction if you must go out when it snows. Better yet, don’t take chances walking on icy or slippery surfaces.

Poor lighting — inside and outdoors — can increase your risk of falls. Make sure you have enough lighting in each room, at entrances, and on outdoor walkways.

 Good lighting on stairways is especially important. Light switches at both the top and bottom of stairs can help.

Place a lamp within easy reach of your bed. Put night lights in the bathroom, hallways, bedroom, and kitchen. Also keep a flashlight by your bed in case the power is out and you need to get up.

 Have handrails installed on both sides of stairs and walkways. If you must carry something while walking up or down stairs, hold the item in one hand and use the handrail with the other.

Properly placed grab bars in your tub and shower, and next to the toilet, can help to avoid falls.  Have grab bars installed, and use them every time you get in and out of the tub or shower. Be sure the grab bars are securely attached to the wall.

In addition to these recommendations, click here for a checklist to prevent or minimize falls in elderly.

 

 

 

Acetaminophen Use During Pregnancy?

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A new study reported in JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association) that is trending mainstream shows a link between the use of Acetaminophen during pregnancy and behavioral issues in children.

Acetaminophen with the over the counter name Tylenol has generally been considered safe as a pain reliever to take during pregnancy.

The finding were released by JAMA. The tests were conducted by the University of Bristol, United Kingdom with a sample group of over 7,000 mothers.

Acetaminophen (paracetamol or Tylenol) is the most commonly used medication for pain and fever during pregnancy in many countries. Research data suggest that acetaminophen is a hormone disruptor, and abnormal hormonal exposures in pregnancy may influence fetal brain development.

Another remarkable study was published in 2014 and performed in conjunction by

  • University of California Los Angeles, School of Medicine and Department of Public Health
  • University of Arizona
  •  University of Aarhus, Aarhus, Denmark.

They studied 64,322 live-born children and mothers enrolled in the Danish National Birth Cohort during 1996-2002.

To determine outcome information they used

(1) parental reports of behavioral problems in children 7 years of age using the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire

(2) retrieved HKD diagnoses from the Danish National Hospital Registry or the Danish Psychiatric Central Registry prior to 2011

(3) identified ADHD prescriptions (mainly Ritalin) for children from the Danish Prescription Registry

More than half of all mothers reported acetaminophen use while pregnant. Children whose mothers used acetaminophen during pregnancy were at higher risk for receiving a hospital diagnosis of HKD, use of ADHD medications , or having ADHD-like behaviors at age 7 years. Stronger associations were observed with use in more than 1 trimester during pregnancy. These results did not appear to be associated with  maternal inflammation, infection during pregnancy, or the mother’s mental health problems.

The conclusion reached was that maternal acetaminophen use during pregnancy is associated with a higher risk for HKDs and ADHD-like behaviors in children. Both of these studies have a high rate of validity because of the numbers of study subjects. Both studies also indicate that more research is needed.

During pregnancy extreme caution is advised when ingesting any medications and mothers-to-be should always check with their physicians before taking anything, whether or not it is over the counter!