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Wild Yam (Dioscorea villosa)

Properties: Analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, expectorant, muscle relaxant, promotes sweating

Target Ailments: Menopause, menstrual cramps, morning sickness, nausea, rheumatoid arthritis, urinary tract infections.

Available Forms: Capsule, cream, dried root, liquid extract, oil, powder, tea, tincture.

Possible Side Effects: Can cause vomiting in large doses.

Precautions: Individuals who are suffering from a hormone-sensitive cancer, such as breast or uterine cancer, should avoid wild yam.

 

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Rebounding to Health

“Jogging on a rebounder is easier on your body than jogging on a hard surface. If you are new to the rebounder, you may want to start out with a soft walk. Even this gentle motion is enough to stimulate lymph flow, helping your body to dissolve and eliminate toxins while strengthening the immune system. Rebounding so effectively moves lymphatic fluid that it has been referred to as “lymphasizing.” In addition to clearing the lymph glands, rebounding will provide aerobic exercise, oxygenating your body…When you jump up and down on a rebounder, the force of gravity alternately pulls and then releases each cell, stimulating cellular fluid flow so that toxic material is flushed out and nutrients are absorbed…Even a short (2 to 3 minute) rebounding session will dramatically increase your white blood cell production, which has the net effect of increasing immunity…In addition, rebounding exercises the musculoskeletal system, protects and strengthens the cardiovascular and peripheral vascular systems, and helps restore bone density.” (p. 164-165)

Watson, B. and Smith, L. (2008). The Detox Strategy: Vibrant Health in 5 Easy Steps. New York, N.Y.: Free Press.

 

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How noisy is your bedroom?

Sound is an important factor in creating an ideal sleep environment.

How to control noise levels:

  • Consider music: nature and ocean sounds can help with relaxation and sleep.
  • Try a relaxation CD.
  • Consider white noise machines. Some companies specialize in “sound conditioners” that drown out noise.
  • Earplugs, earphones, pillow speakers, and TV timer (for both light and noise).
  • Check your alarm clock: If you and your partner wake at different times, consider a vibrating alarm clock that fits in your pillowcase so it doesn’t disturb your partner.
  • If you have a TV in your room, do you or your partner sleep with it on? How loud is it? Consider removing TV from the bedroom.

Source: Good Night: The Sleep Doctor’s 4-week Program to Better Sleep and Better Health by Michael Breus, 2006, p. 96-97

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Goldenseal

Properties: Antacid, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, astringent, digestive aid, stimulant.

Target Ailments: Canker sores, contact dermatitis, diarrhea, eczema, food poisoning.

Available forms: Capsule, dry herb, liquid extract, tea, tincture.

Possible side effects: In high doses, goldenseal can cause diarrhea and nausea and can irritate the skin, mouth and throat.

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Do With Less

“According to a poll by the American Psychological Association, 4 of the top 10 stressors we experience are related to money- how we get it and how we spend it. Given that, doesn’t it make sense that if we want less and are content with less- smaller houses, fewer gadgets, and simpler forms of transportation- our stress levels will go down? Maybe that applies to our career choices as well. Do you really want to work yourself to death to be the person in charge of the world? Or will just being in charge of a small portion of it make you happy and let you sleep? A recent poll of almost 2,000 Americans reveals that 22 percent declined a promotion or refused to seek one because they thought the job would be too stressful.” (p.69)

Source: Sleep to be Sexy, Smart, and Slim by Ellen Michaud and Julie Bain (2008)

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Mastering Sleep

  • Get regular exercise. Studies show that non-exercisers have higher rates of insomnia than exercisers. Non-exercisers have cured insomnia through taking up a regular exercise program.
  • Getting half an hour minimum of sunlight a day will help you sleep.
  • Do several minutes of light stretching before going to bed.
  • A twenty-minute walk after dinner followed by a hot bath or shower before bed is an excellent relaxation method.
  • If there is light or noise coming into your bedroom, you may want to try an eye pillow and earmuffs.
  • Poor functioning or unhealthy habits in other areas – a bad diet, insufficient exercise, poor hydration and oxygenation, overwork, and more -can cause or contribute to insomnia.

Grauds, C. & Childers, D. 2005. The Energy Prescription. New York, N.Y.: Bantam Books. (p.191-192)

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