Alternative, Complementary and Integrative Health articles written by some of the most beloved, respected, outrageous and progressive healers and thinkers in the global healthcare field today! Hundreds of topics are covered, including articles on health maladies, disorders and therapies. Some of the topics covered include Aromatherapy, Herbal Medicine, Acupuncture, Exercise, Nutrition and Lifestyle Changes, Energy Medicine, Crystals and Homeopathy. You may access other health topics, all organized alphabetically.
Submitting an article? Click Here.
*Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare provider. Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition. The information provided is for educational purposes only and is not intended as
diagnosis, treatment, or prescription of any kind. The decision to use, or not to use, any information is the sole responsibility of the reader.
A * B * C * D * E * F * G * H * I * J * K * L * M * N * O * P * Q * R * S * T * U * V * W * X,Y * Z * Featured Articles
by Sri Dharma Pravartaka Acharya
The empirical reality that we perceive around us is composed of matter. Whether
we are referring to the buildings we reside in, the many possessions we strive
for, or the very bodies with which we so intimately identify, all objects are
composed of the prakriti, or the prime material energy, of God. Of the many
qualities that are discernible in prakriti (matter), the essential feature
encountered is that of transience. Matter is in a constant state of flux, a
continual cycle of becoming, being and dissolution. Thus everything that we
perceive around us, though seemingly stable, ultimately is destined to cease
Prakriti, herself, is not a purely undifferentiated field of substance. Prakriti
consists of a substratum of three different modes, each one dependent upon the
other two for their mutual existence and proper functioning. These three modes
of prakriti, or material energy, are also known as the three gunas, which in
Sanskrit (the ancient, sacred language of Sanatana Dharma) means "qualities" or
In the two verses from the Gita that are quoted above, Shri Krishna (the
incarnation of God) gives Arjuna a glimpse into the nature and power of the
three gunas of which prakriti, or prime matter, is composed. This triad of
material modes consists of 1) sattva (positivity, purity, goodness,
wholesomeness), 2) rajas (passion, energy, movement) and 3) tamas (negativity,
lethargy, darkness, ignorance). These three aspects of material energy exist as
the very core of all empirical material phenomena. They can be seen as being
three different modes in the spectrum of the one primary material substance.
They represent the unitary material substance in three different, yet completely
interdependent, frequencies or states.
Every aspect of material phenomena that we perceive around us - including our
own body - is composed of a combination of these three gunas, with one or the
other of these three gunas predominating. Thus everything in the material world,
including us, is effected by the interplay of the gunas. We will now briefly
examine the primary characteristics of each of the three gunas.
We will begin this exploration of the gunas by examining the guna which the
Bhagavad Gita considers to be the highest quality: sattva. Sattva can be
translated as "goodness." This guna denotes such qualities as purity, brightness
and essence. It is also light - both in the luster of its radiance and in terms
of its actual weight in terms of physics. Thus, individuals who are of a
spiritual, clean (both physically and mentally) and peaceful nature are said to
be living a sattvic existence; they are residing in goodness. Sattva is the
quality most sought by all spiritual practitioners. Every sincere yogi, without
exception, strives to be sattvic in all of their thoughts, their words, and
The next guna is rajas. Rajas denotes activity and movement. It is the mediator
between the other two gunas, as well as their empowerer. For without the kinetic
assistance of rajas, neither sattva nor tamas can act. It is rajas which
motivates the individual to labor and which inspires work. Those persons in whom
rajas predominates tend to be of a fiery and passionate disposition. While a
certain degree of rajas is always necessary in order to facilitate any sort of
activity, too much of this quality makes one restless, thus hampering the
focused concentration that is necessary for meditation and other forms of
disciplined spiritual pursuits.
When the material energy (prakriti), through the medium of rajas, becomes turned
to its lowest frequency, it is then known as tamas. Tamas has the
characteristics of dullness, ignorance and inertia. It is a dark mode, both
intrinsically and in the consequences it brings about. Due to its heavy,
weighted nature, it provides stability, and its solidity forms the very
foundation of matter. Tamas is the source of obstacles, resistance and
obstructions. Tamas brings about cessation. Those who are of a tamasic nature
tend toward lethargy, procrastination and self-destructive behavior. It is the
end point of the descent and devolution of prakriti. It is, thus, the very
antithesis of sattva. Those wishing to make any sort of meaningful spiritual
progress must thoroughly avoid tamasic tendencies.
These three interdependent strands of the material substance are different
aspects of the same energy, which in turn is under the full control of the
Supreme Godhead, Bhagavan Sri Krishna. Sattva is the finest frequency that
prakriti adopts. Rajas is the intermediate catalytic energy source. Tamas is the
resting place, the dullest mode of material energy. The qualitative hierarchy of
the three gunas can be visually represented in this way:
THE THREE GUNAS
Sattva = goodness
Rajas = energy to act
Tamas = lethargy
The practitioner of Yoga seeks to ultimately transcend these three gunas
completely, and thus be liberated from illusion (maya) by a systematic process
of gradual progressive ascent. This spiritual ascent occurs in several stages.
The first stage is to determine which of the three gunas presently predominates
oneâ€™s life, thought and actions. If it is determined that either rajas or tamas
is the strongest influence in oneâ€™s life, then the next step is to rid oneself
of these negative influences. This is done by leading as sattvic a life as
possible. There are several lifestyle choices that are recommended in order to
make oneâ€™s life more sattvic. This sattvic program includes the following:
The Sattvic Program
1) Practicing the philosophy and disciplines of Yoga on a daily basis. This
includes following the ethical virtues taught in the path of Yoga spirituality
(such as non-violence, not stealing, not lying, etc.), as well as the asanas, or
psycho-physical exercises of Yoga.
2) Having a purely vegetarian, healthy and organic diet. A purely sattvic diet
is lacto-vegetarian, that is, avoidance of all meat, fish and eggs (dairy
products such as milk, yogurt and cheese are acceptable). Such a diet will
increase one's health, stamina, intelligence and bring about peace of mind.
3) Ridding one's mind of all negative, violent and disturbing thoughts and
images. This is done, for example, by avoiding violent entertainment, ridding
oneself of feelings of vengeance and hatred, and filling oneâ€™s mind with
thoughts of God instead. The music we hear also effects our consciousness. We
want to avoid music that is charged with explicitly sexual (tamasic) or violent
(rajasic) lyrics, such as "rap" and "hip-hop", and instead listen to bhajans,
kirtan, and uplifting music of different forms.
4) Meditating daily. In order to have a sattvic existence, we need to purify and
still the mind. This is best achieved by having a daily practice of meditation
and prayer. The most powerful form of meditation is a practice that focuses on
the names of God. Aum Namo Narayanaya is the most powerful and purifying of all
mantras. Meditate on these names of God daily.
5) Associating with others who are also leading a sattvic lifestyle. We are all
consciously and unconsciously influenced by the nature of the company we keep.
If we associate with tamasic or rajasic people, we in turn become tamasic or
rajasic. But if we associate with those who are sattvic by nature, then we
cannot help but be positively influenced by them. Always avoid the company of
bad people, and always seek the company of the good.
By strictly and enthusiastically following this Sattvic Program, we can
gradually transform our consciousness from one of self-destructiveness into one
of positive spiritual attainment.
As Sri Krishna explains in the Bhagavad Gita, or "Song of God," the position in
which we presently find ourselves as human beings is a state of self-imposed
separation from the loving will of God. Rather than recognizing our true
ontological nature as beings who exist in an eternal, loving relationship with
the Absolute, we have instead become subject to the illusion of separation from
God. As long as we are under this false assumption of separation from God, we
will be under the binding influence of these respective gunas.
Upon consciously and freely surrendering our lives to Sri Krishna, however, we
then reclaim the ability to transcend the gunas altogether, and to achieve a
state of radical freedom from all material influences, sufferings and illusions.
This state of spiritual liberation is known as moksha, Freedom, a state in which
we have full knowledge of our true selves, complete personal fulfillment and
bliss beyond compare.
About the Author
Sri Dharma Pravartaka Acharya (Dr. Frank Morales, Ph.D.) is universally
acclaimed as one of the world's most respected and qualified Dharma teachers and
Hindu spiritual leaders alive today. He personifies what it means to be a true
and authentic guru.
By Helen Thompson, IIHHT MICHT MIPTI
The holistic therapy of reflexology has been used over the years to promote physical health and wellbeing in many thousands of people from all walks of life, but there is also a subtler aspect to its benefits that can be applied to the more vulnerable amongst us, to expand awareness and enhance everyday living.
When a client of mine asked if she could bring her sister, who had learning disabilities, for a reflexology treatment with me, I was only too glad to concur. When the appointment day arrived, the young lady's mother accompanied her and explained to me that her daughter had been born with learning disabilities (she was now in her thirties) and that the only diagnosis that doctors had given her was that something probably went wrong during birth.
My client appeared in cheerful mood, did not appear nervous, but was unable to reply to my enquiries about her health and lifestyle. Her mother did this for me, telling me she was on the whole in good general health (apart from suffering from a condition called rosacea) and that one thing she constantly talked about was getting married! She loved to look at magazines where there were pictures of brides' dresses and related details and often imagined herself to be dressed in one. However, emotionally she was very detached from people, even her mother and two sisters.
During the treatment, she was unable to communicate to me any tender spots on her feet, which were very smooth & unlined, although I encountered several gritty areas especially on the head area and the pituitary and pineal glands. She did, however, say that she was enjoying it and loved the feeling of her feet being rubbed. I gave her an especially thorough post-treatment foot massage because of this. As they were about to leave, the young lady gave me a really big hug and thanked me for the time I had spent with her. I am quite used to this, but was a little surprised to see the look of astonishment on her mother's face.
The next day, her mother phoned me to say that she had never, ever, seen her daughter give anyone a hug - not even to her - and that was the reason for her amazement at her response to the treatment. She also told me that, during the evening, when her daughter had been sitting upstairs in her bedroom, dressed only in her underwear as she was accustomed to do every night, the mother had called up to her to let her know that she was going down to the shop to make a few purchases. Instead of the short ?OK? that she expected, the girl called down to her to wait a moment while she got dressed, and she would accompany her on the walk to the shop. This was so unusual that the mother could hardly believe her ears. The daughter came downstairs fully dressed, and walked to the shop and back with her, lacing her arm in her mother's on the way back. This may sound like a very small breakthrough to many people, but the mother was moved to tears while recounting this to me.
Reflexology treats all the organs of the body through the feet, but not only this - it clears blocked energy pathways throughout the body enabling organs and glands to function properly and in a holistic way. When a blockage is removed from one area, this in turn promotes the free flow of energy to a related area, and so on. It can show benefits to the physical body or, as in this case, to the emotional body so that the heart can stimulate the brain into alternative ways of thinking or behaving. The fact that a client cannot tell us what is felt during a treatment is therefore no indication as to the level of benefit that the treatment can bestow upon the mind, body and spirit.
About the Author
Helen Thompson is a therapist, healer & facilitator based in the West Midlands, UK and who offers reflexology, many types of energy healing, workshops & reiki attunements, and meditation classes to private & corporate clients. Her website can be viewed at www.healingholistix.com
By Andrew Pacholyk, MS, L.Ac.
Well known metaphysical expert Louise Hay strongly believes that foot problems psycho-emotionally express our fear of the future or not stepping forward in life.
Foot problems can arise suddenly with no apparent rhyme or reason. They can also be the result of an injury from direct trauma to the feet or from ill-fitting shoes.
Foot and hand reflexology is a scientific art, based on the premise that there are zones and reflex areas in the feet and hands, which correspond to all body parts. The physical act of applying specific pressures using thumb, finger and hand techniques result in stress reduction, which causes a physiological change in the body. Reflexology is the application of, specific pressure by the use of the practitioner's hand, thumb and fingers to a reflex map resembling the human body, which is believed to exist on the extremities (1).
The nervous system is the key to access, control, and releasing subtle energy patterns which are apart of the body's nervous system. It is thought that stimulating some of the more than 7,000 nerve endings on the foot can unblock and increase the flow of this vital
energy to various parts of the body and therefore promote healing. The reflexology theory is consistent with the theory behind acupuncture and acupressure, in which mapped points on body parts such as the ear, body or hand are treated to affect corresponding remote organs or body zones.
"Many of our health issues revolve around stress", says New York Reflexologist, Jenny Ingram. Stress can manifest mentally, emotionally and or physically. Reflexology is a primary relaxation technique. Reflexology can dissipate the effects of stress while it helps the body relax; Jenny Ingram, who is a licensed acupuncture, Oriental medicine and Chinese herbologist, discovered the many equivalent relationships in reflexology and
Chronic conditions seem to respond especially well to Reflexology. In China, where reflexology is accepted by the central government as a means of preventing and curing diseases and preserving health, over 300 research studies have shown reflexology provided some improvement to 95% of the over 18,000 cases covering 64 illnesses studied. (2).
Jenny uses Reflexology to gently improve lymphatic drainage and venous circulation. Most all my clients get reflexology for different reasons but a shared response is how it can sooth, calm, balance and boost their entire body.
Reflexology can address a variety of needs. There has been thousands of documented case studies from around the world which have demonstrated the benefits of reflexology. Pain, congestion, stress or overactive states within the body can be balanced. pms, migraine, sinus, colic, menopause, constipation/diarrhea, back pain, neck pain, sciatica, shoulder pain, asthma, stroke, menstrual Irregularities can all benefit from the power of reflexology.
The stress of everyday standing and pounding on the feet, a more serious disorder which is also accompanied by pain or the emotional feelings of just being stuck or unable or willing to move forward in life, are all great reasons why you should call Jenny Ingram or your local reflexologist. You'll be happy you did!
1.American Reflexology Certification Board
2. Journal of Chinese Medicine -vol. 12 issue 35 1999 pg. 34
***Certified Reflexologist Jenny Ingram is currently accepting new clients. Her thriving practice is located in New York City and she can be reached at 917 941 2646
by Andrew Pacholyk, MS L.Ac
Ganoderma lucidum (Ling Zhi) which literally means "supernatural mushroom" has documented to have medicinal value. This variety of mushrooms has enjoyed special veneration in Japan, China, where it has been used as a medicinal mushroom in Kampo and traditional Chinese medicine for more than 2,000 years, therefore, making it one of the oldest mushrooms known to have been used medicinally.
The reishi extract has been shown to be effective in treating migraine headaches. It is believed that oxygen shortage in the brain (hypoxia) is at the core of the pathogenesis of a migraine attack. As an anti-inflammatory agent, the extract is effective in substantially alleviating the problems and pain related to rheumatism or osteoarthritis and gout.
In treating hypertension or hypotension, the extract has been shown to be highly effective in a very large number of cases treated. In the more successful cases blood pressure is back to normal within 2 months. The extract has been found effective in reducing and in some cases eliminating asthma attack.
The extract is effective in reducing blood sugar levels and the amounts of insulin required for diabetic patients. The extract is effective in regaining stamina and energy or debility due to prolonged illness especially for cancer patients after undergoing radio and/or chemotherapy. They are able to eat and sleep well.
The extract is effective in clearing up a large variety of skin allergic conditions either due to food or airborne allergens. Ganoderma extract has been found to be useful in detoxifying the kidneys and improving its overall function.
Patients receiving hemodialysis should find that the duration and frequency of the treatment could be reduced. The extract has been shown effective in reducing or eliminating excessive menstrual pain and irregularities.
Ganoderma extract has been found effective in addressing a variety of cardiovascular problems. It improves the circulatory system with excess oxygen. It also decreases the conditions of angina pectoris and palpitation.
by Andrew Pacholyk, MS, L.Ac.
The key to losing weight effectively is:
Taking in fewer calories than you can burn results in weight loss.
Taking in more calories than you can burn results in weight gain!
Women should restrict their calorie intake to 1200 a day
Men should restrict their calorie intake to 1500 a day
Be Aware Of Your Calorie Intake : If you are unsure about the calories in your meal, I feel it is essential to learn this amazing tool for effective weight loss. Record in your ledger or journal the calories of everything you put in your mouth for one week. Be in tune to the total calories you consume daily, and make an effort to replace high-fat foods with low-calorie ones like vegetables and fruits.
Calculate your Caloric Intake here
I cannot stress enough how discipline is the second most important aspect in losing weight or achieving any kind of success in your life!
It is the secret to the most effective, efficient and well strategize plan you can give yourself! Being successful, losing weight, maintaining relationships are not tasks that come easy for most people. They are all things we must work hard on creating, keeping and maintaining!
(Why do you think diet plans have *Results not typical with an asterisks? Because most people have a lack of discipline).
You probably already have some forms of discipline in your life. You pay your bills by a certain time, you show up for work every day, often plan your finances, your meals or walk your dog. These are all disciplines in your life already. Some of us need a little more in our lives than others. This is where you can gain great help and insight, by:
a). Creating a plan to lose weight.
b). Shop ahead for your food.
c). Map out your food plan.
d). Eat 5 times a day
e). Plan out your days of exercise and what you will do
f). Drink your water, cleansing smoothies and juice
g). Incorporate the mental wellness techniques in our guide
h). Use the body beautiful techniques in our guide
i). Use the meal plan provided as a reminder for your day
j). Check off or write out what you have for each meal
k). If you want to map calories, do it for the first 30 days
The whole idea with these suggestions is to show you just how much you are eating, how many calories you are consuming and to get you into a pattern, which will set you up for great success!
3. Portion Control
This was a hard lesson for me to learn. As a dancer and someone who always worked out, I felt I had my portioning under control. I eventually learned why I would get that bloated and discomfort feeling after eating. It was my portion size. Sure I was active and exercising but as I aged and my metabolism slowed, my portions were not changing with the rest of me! Once I understood the discipline behind this, it changed my life! An easy way to understand portion control is to look on the back of any Nutritional Label.
On this label, one serving size is a cup. In that cup is 250 calories. There are 12 grams of fat in this serving. Look at the fiber, sodium, saturated fat, trans fat and total fat numbers. These are for this one-cup serving. So, it is always a good idea to pay attention to this information, especially when you are food shopping.
Eat portions to satisfy hunger, not to clean the plate. By dinner, if you have complex carbs (potatoes, yams, brown rice) with your meal; it should be no more than a cup full. Half of your plate should be vegetables. The meat, fish, chicken portion should be the size of your fist. Portion control is the secret to a healthy weight!
4. Exercise is another key element in successful weight loss.
As we age, our body's composition gradually shifts as the proportion of muscle decreases and the proportion of fat increases. This shift slows our metabolism, making it much easier to gain weight. Many people become less active as they get older, increasing the risk of weight gain. Weight gain can be prevented by choosing a lifestyle that includes good eating habits and daily exercise.
You have got to move! A walk around the block is just not going to cut it. You have invested time in creating a plan, you have gone shopping and you are eating your proper proportions, but exercise is what your body needs to really keep you healthy, fit and strong. Not only does it help burn excess calories, but also by increasing your physical activity you can modify the way your brain regulates hunger, hormones and stress, making you less susceptible to food cravings. If you are currently on an exercise plan and you are not losing the weight you want, you need to step it up! Change your routine. Change the exercises you are doing. Mix it up. You should do both cardiovascular movement as well as weight baring exercises. If you are currently not working out, it is time to start. Talk to your doctor about a physical exercise program. A doctor will tell you if you are ok to exercise. Most doctors will not tell you that you are not able to exercise. Then, find a knowledgeable trainer; join a gym, exercise plan or community group, such as yoga, tai chi, pilates or a running group. The most important thing to do is find fitness you feel great about doing! It may take time, but the basics are essential and that is aerobic exercise (cardiovascular) and anaerobic exercise (weight baring). You must schedule exercise into your day, as you schedule everything else.
5. Drink your water
What ever the current controversy is about water; 8 glasses or not 8 glasses; the bottles the water comes in (leaching toxins), the key to water is that it is essential to life! Most people do not drink enough water. By the way, if you look on the bottom of your water bottle (or any bottles you buy water in) they should have a number 1 on them. This plastic does not leach toxins into the water. The plastic water jugs you purchase to carry water or fluids in may have the number 7 on the bottom of the bottle. If it does, throw it out! (These bottles have currently been shown to leak toxins into the water from the plastic). Water is also an important component in weight management. It nourishes the body and fills you up.Carry this bottle of water with you everywhere and enjoy its contents. Drink pplenty of water daily. Not only will you loss water as you exercise, drinking water makes you feel full, therefore, not as much room for food.
6. Be prepared
Having the right food around is imperative. Because when you get hungry, you are likely to eat anything you get your hands on. Plan your meals, do your food shopping and have a variety of heart health, fiber-filling foods you love at your disposal. Ready to be eaten when it is meal or snack time.
7. Think Lifestyle
Remove the word diet from your vocabulary. You will be making changes that will have a profound effect on your way of thinking, how you eat and most of all, your lifestyle. Once you make these changes, they become habit. Good habits. Good habits become a healthy lifestyle.
8. The Glycemic Index
The glycemic index describes the difference by ranking carbohydrates according to their effect on our blood glucose levels. Low GI carbs produce only small fluctuations in our blood glucose and insulin levels and this is the secret to long-term health reducing your risk of heart disease and diabetes and is the key to sustainable weight loss. You must try to eat low on the glycemic (sugar) index, in order to avoid highs and lows in your blood sugar that can lead to increased insulin production and conversion of calories to fat.
9. Alcohol is fattening
Since it can't be stored by the body and burns up right away, it increases the likelihood that the food you eat while you're drinking will turn into fat.
10. Eat Right, More Times
Eating the right carbs, proteins and fats should be consumed in small portions more times throughout the day. This keeps craving and blood sugar levels in check. Water, carbohydrates, proteins, and fats are the basic building blocks of a good diet. By choosing the healthiest forms of each of these nutrients, and eating them in the proper balance, you enable your body to function at its optimal level.
11. Vitamin Therapy
This is a good way to help your body regulate what you may not be getting through your diet. A good daily multivitamin is the best start.
12. Limit Animal-based Foods
Foods such as meat and dairy products, which are loaded with saturated fat and cholesterol. Use olive oil or canola oil instead of butter or margarine to reduce your intake of saturated fat and hydrogenated fat (trans fat). Moderate your consumption of fried, salted and smoked foods.
Your belief system has everything to do with the mental and spiritual aspects of weight control. Fight anxiety with relaxation exercises rather than food. Utilize meditation, yoga, stretching. By creating healthy eating habits and regular exercise, you are sure to lose weight without depriving yourself of nourishing food. And if you continue those good habits after you reach your goal, you will have an excellent chance of maintaining your desired weight and see it more as maintaining a lifestyle as opposed to a diet. Learning to have a more structured and disciplined lifestyle can make all the difference in your progress. You deserve it!
14. Sleep Well
Good quality sleep is important, especially when you are trying to loss weight. I think it is most important to go to sleep with a "Quiet Mind". Sleep rejuvenates, detoxes and regulates the body. Sleep allows our body to rejuvenate and repair!
15. Overcome Fear
Fear can be an underlining problem in many cases. There are many ways to quiet the mind. Doing 15 to 30 minutes of meditation or yoga can be very helpful. You must allow yourself to be distracted or get into your meditation or yoga and "let go" of the days thoughts...see Meditation.
16. Don't Smoke
Besides the fact that it can cause lung cancer and is the second leading cause of death for both men and women, nicotine is a stimulant and complicates weight control.
17. Life to Go
Everyone has a busy lifestyle. You plan your day's meetings, schedule your kid's soccer game or know when to pick up the dry cleaning. Do the same with your meals and snacks. Prepare food ahead. Make goodie bags with cut veggies, apples, grapes, pears, and bananas. Have some nutrition bars on hand or cook/pack your lunch the night before. Mix a salad or make a large pot of soup or hearty chili.
18. Shop Ahead
Go natural, go organic or simply go to your local food store, which seems to have fresh produce. The products you choose should be low in sodium and contain wholesome ingredients, and they should be trans-fat free. Plan meal ideas and shop ahead for them. This way, it gives you less of an opportunity to end up at a fast food restaurant.
19. Weigh In
At the start of your program, weigh yourself. Note the weight in your journal and note your goal. What is your goal? Is it 5,10,20,30 pounds or more? Keep it realistic. Achieve goals in small increments, then reassess your goals, once you achieve that level you decided on. NOW give yourself sometime. Do not step back on the scale for another two weeks. Your weight will move up and down, may change due to your water intake and output or fluctuate with hormone levels. If you give yourself a two week window and you have remained firm to your discipline, you will be amazed at your progress after two weeks.
20. Body Mass Index BMI
According to The Cleveland Clinic, A BMI (Body Mass Index) of 40 or more indicates morbid obesity, which increases a person's risk of death from any cause by 50% to 150%. BMI is an indirect measure of your body fat, which is a quick way to see if you are overweight. BMI uses a person's weight and height to gauge total body fat.
A BMI of 18.5-24.9 is ideal.
A BMI of 25 to 29.9 is overweight.
A BMI of 30 or more indicates obesity.
A BMI of 40 or more indicates morbid obesity, which increases a person's risk of death.
Learn more about Andrew's FREE weight loss program. Get started right NOW.
by Andrew Pacholyk, MS, L.Ac.
This month we will be keeping tabs on your New Years Resolutions, in
order to empower you, help you to stay on track and give you some
great tips for keeping your promise to yourself.
Tobacco, in the form of cigarettes, is the most addictive drug in the
world. Nicotine is one of the strongest stimulants known, and smoking
is one of the most efficient drug-delivery systems. Smoking actually
puts drugs into the brain more directly than intravenous injection.
It is true that one of the "benefits" of smoking is the brief relief
of internal tension; unfortunately, within 20 minutes the tension is
back stronger than before, demanding another fix. Many of the
chemicals in tobacco smoke also affect the nonsmoker inhaling the
smoke, making "secondhand smoking" another important cause of lung
cancer. It is responsible for approximately 3,000 lung cancer deaths
Lung Cancer is the leading cancer killer in both men and women. An
estimated 180,900 new cases of lung cancer and an estimated 160,880
deaths from lung cancer will occur in the United States in the
following year. Smoking is the number one cause of lung cancer. Lung
cancer may also be the most tragic cancer because in most cases, it
might have been prevented -- 87% of lung cancer cases are caused by
smoking. Cigarette smoke contains more than 4,000 different
chemicals, many of which are proven cancer-causing substances, or
carcinogens. Smoking cigars or pipes also increases the risk of lung
The more time and quantity you smoke, the greater your risk of lung
cancer. But if you stop smoking, the risk of lung cancer decreases
each year as normal cells replace abnormal cells. After ten years,
the risk drops to a level that is one-third to one-half of the risk
for people who continue to smoke. In addition, quitting smoking
greatly reduces the risk of developing other smoking-related
diseases, such as heart disease, stroke, emphysema and chronic
Chronic bronchitis may result from prolonged exposure to bronchial
irritants. Cigarette smoking, environmental toxins, and inhalant
allergens can all cause chronic irritation of the bronchi. The cells
lining the bronchi produce excess mucus in response to the chronic
irritation; this excess mucus production can lead to a chronic,
productive cough. Bronchitis can be particularly dangerous in the
elderly and in people with compromised immune systems. These
individuals should see a doctor if they develop a respiratory
Low-tar, low-nicotine cigarettes offer no great advantages. People
tend to smoke more of them, or inhale more deeply to get the same
amount of nicotine. Pipes and cigars, if not inhaled, do not cause
lung cancer and emphysema, but do increase the risk of oral cancer
(as do snuff and chewing tobacco).
There are many programs available to help you quit: acupuncture,
hypnotherapy, and support groups. There are also a many products -
nicotine patches and gum, for instance - on the market that work for
some. None of these methods works reliably for everyone. Most
successful quitters do it on their own after one or more unsuccessful
attempts. Going "cold turkey" also seems to work better than
gradually cutting down.
Don't get discouraged. If you can't quit today, you may be able to
tomorrow. You want to be motivated. You need to do this for yourself,
not because someone else wants you to. You have to believe that you
by Andrew Pacholyk, MS, L.Ac.
This month we will be keeping tabs on your New Years Resolutions, in
order to empower you, help you to stay on track and give you some
great tips for keeping your promise to yourself.
Exercise is what your body instinctively wants to do especially under
stress: fight or flight, and it works. It burns off some of the
stress chemicals which tension produces. Therefore, a tired muscle is
a relaxed muscle. Regular exercise builds stamina that can help
anyone battle stress. But even something as casual as a walk around
the block can help you burn off some of the tension that you carrying
How To Do It
By increasing lifestyle activities each day, try doing four 10-minute increases at least five days a week. The idea is to just do more of what you are already doing. Here are some great ideas on getting motivated:
*Walk, don't drive.
*Take the stairs at the office — not the elevator.
*Play with your kids instead of watching them play.
*Bike to the store.
*Stretch while you watch TV.
*Get up from the sofa to change the channel. Channel surfers get
quite a workout.
*Park at the opposite end of the mall from where you're headed.
*If you've got an exercise bike at home, peddle away for 5 minutes while you're talking on the phone or waiting for the washing machine
*Walk the treadmill while watching a favorite TV program.
*Listen to music and dance your way through housecleaning.
*Start slow — a few minutes at first. Then, pick up the pace and go longer.
*Workout clothes are not necessary, but wear good walking shoes.
*Don't let missing a few days become your excuse to quit.
*Even if you miss a few days, you won't lose all the benefits you've gained.
*Be flexible. Do what you can when you can.
*Take advantage of opportunities. If you're watching your child's soccer game, walk around the field.
*Playing golf? Skip the cart.
*Find a partner. Climbing stairs at the office will be far more interesting if you chat away the minutes with a co-worker.
*Instead of building your life around exercise, build exercise around
excerpt from What's Your Heart Telling You? Finding Love and Romance - The Workbook and Journal
Our website readers, clients, patients and friends have all chimed in wanting to be apart of this Love Manual and workbook so I have given them a chance and have compiled an interesting list of gifts to romance with!
Make your love a gift from scratch; it is more meaningful and personal. - Submitted by Mark
Keep a scrapbook of memories (pictures, bus/plane tickets from when you visited your love, pressed flowers, etc.). Once it is full you can give it to your love. - Submitted by Lisa Wilson
For my boyfriend's birthday I went out and bought a ton of marbles, all different sizes, and sat down with a fine (FINE, FINE, FINE) permanent marker and wrote things on them. I wrote the day we meet, the funny sayings we have, I love you, our names, our silly nicknames, etc. He will look at them from time to time and he said that it really meant a lot to him to have me spend so much time on such small details for a gift. - Submitted by Jenny
Surprise her with an ankle bracelet. Sit her down, rub her feet, tell her you appreciate her, then put the bracelet on her ankle. - Submitted by Butch Pendleton
This year for Valentine's Day I'm writing a fairy tale based on our relationship. I'm going to draw pictures and make it into a book by attaching all of the pages with ribbon. - Submitted by Andrea
Last year I received the most romantic gift from my boyfriend. It was a sculpted heart that he ordered from the web site - a big red heart with his love message inside. - Submitted by Dana
Buy your sweetheart a teddy bear and leave it on their bed with a little note saying: "You can hug me when _____ (write your name here) isn't here." My boyfriend did this for me and I cuddle up to my bear every night, in fact I can't sleep without it! - Submitted by S. Kregs
My boyfriend bought me the cutest stuffed animal and put it in the driver's seat of my car with the seatbelt strapped around it. - Submitted by Princess Angel
For our anniversary, I made my boyfriend a book. I got a 1 inch, 3 ring binder (a photo album could also work) and I got clear plastic folders to stick in the binder. On 100 pieces of computer paper I wrote reasons why I love him. I had 100 reasons in all and on each page were a different reason and a picture of us. I decorated the front with stickers and little pictures of me. He loved it and looks at it all the time. Another idea is to put on the back of the pages quotes or song lyrics that fit your relationship. - Submitted by Jessica
Make ten envelops with different things written on the outside (like "When You Miss Me" or "When You're Sad") and put something appropriate in each one. Then give them all at once to your boyfriend and make him wait until he's feeling those certain ways to open them. It's pretty funny to watch them get impatient! - Submitted by Sarah Anne
Make your own massage oil. Buy some sweet almond oil at the grocery store, and some of your favorite essential oils (recipes all over the internet). Mix them together and pour into a nifty little 4 oz bottle (preferably colored glass) and give your sweetie a homemade, edible massage. The effort will truly be appreciated! - Submitted by Jennifer Hauserman
A special friend of mine gave me a gift one Christmas that I will always remember. In the box was a velvet bag containing a beautiful wooden hand mirror. With the mirror was a note saying, "I wanted to give you the most beautiful thing in the world for Christmas. I looked and looked, but could not find anything more beautiful than you." Talk about heart melting romance! - Submitted by Britt
My wife and I have been married for three years. Every year I have followed the tradition of: 1 year = paper, 2 years = cotton, 3 years = leather, and so on. On our first anniversary I got her airplane tickets (paper) to a quiet beach in Florida. She had no clue we were going. At 7:00 in the morning on a Saturday I woke her up and gave her an anniversary card and in it was her gift. As you can imagine she was in shock, crying, and jumping up and down with joy. We only went for two days, but it was nice. For our second anniversary I did something a little more difficult. I got her cotton underwear. But I had to do more then give it to her in a gift box. So, I bought 8 blank cards and in each card I wrote a clue or a riddle or a puzzle for her. They all lead her to a store or a business in our town. The hard part was getting people in the store to play along. When she arrived at the store the person working had to give her the next clue. I also had a little gift waiting at each store (for example, a CD at the music store). She loved it! - Submitted by Matt C.
You know the saying: "If it is carved in stone it must be true". Find a stone and carve a little message in it such as: "I Love You Andrea" or "I love You Bob", and then give it to your honey.
- Submitted by Brian Stettler
My boyfriend had to go across the country to a speech competition, so I decided to make him a care package. I got a small box and put in a luv pop for him when "he needs a little loving", a penny "for good luck", a paper star I made because "no matter how he does, he'll always be my shining star", a stone with "love" on it so he will be reminded that he's loved, a picture of us together, a phone card, and a love letter for each day that he's gone. I sprayed the box with my perfume, taped it shut, and made him promise he wouldn't open it until he was on the plane. He loved it! - Submitted by Emily
For my boyfriend's birthday my friends and I blew up a bunch of balloons and I wrote something that I liked about him on each balloon. At 5:00 in the morning on the day of his birthday I put the balloons in the back seat of his car with his presents on the front! He loved it and said that no one has ever done anything that nice for him! - Submitted by Kylie
Gather pictures of your wife/girlfriend/boyfriend from the first day you saw them, to the now and make a card using a color copier. (Be sure to use at least one wedding picture if married.) Make sure the card is covered with pics inside and out. Inside the card write: "I'd do it ALL over again!". This would also work with a small photo album. - Submitted by Mr.Romance
Get a shoe box and leave it blank on the outside. Decorate the inside with whatever you want, but don't forget to put a picture of you on the bottom side of the lid so when he opens it she will see your picture. Then in the bottom write a note telling him that this box is full of blown kisses that he can take out and use when ever he feels blue. - Submitted by Shar Czerwonka
Make her a jigsaw puzzle. You will need to get a picture of the two of you enlarged, and a piece of 1/4" wood the same size as the picture. I downloaded a jigsaw puzzle creation program and used it to get a template for the pieces. Trace the pieces on the wood and cut them out on a jigsaw. Then glue the picture on and use a razor to cut the picture to match the pieces. - Submitted by QM
Buy her a teddy bear and spray it with your cologne, now she can be reminded of you whenever she smells it. - Submitted by Pauline
by Andrew Pacholyk, MS, L.Ac.
I am often drawn to the psychological aspects of any healing modality and essential oils are no different. Roses represent Love, Trust and Self-Acceptence.
Originally from Asia, there are some 250 species with over 10,000 hybrid varieties. Only three can be distilled for their aromatic perfume. Rosa Gallica (French Rose), Rosa Damascena (Damask Rose) and Rosa Centifolia (Cabbage Rose). It is the Bulgarian Damask Rose that gives the finest quality of distilled essence or "Otto".
Since it takes about 120 lbs or 60,000 roses to be distilled down to 1 ounce of Rose Otto, it is reasonable to see why it is such an expensive essential oil.
Rose Absolute, created by using a solvant in the process of distillation, allows for this oil to be significantly less expensive and is used by the perfume industry. Often blended in a base of jojoba or sunflower oil, Rose Absolute is what is often sold by most essential oil companies.
A gentle Heart tonifier, Rose's psychological properties play mostly upon it effects on the mind. The mind, which is the center of our emotional being, extends it's energy to the heart. Rose oil calms, nourishes and supports the heart and helps restore a sense of well being. Rose oil can be very beneficial in helping with anxiety, palpitations and insomnia.
The compassion of the Rose is seen through it's ability to heal emotional wounds. When loss, rejection or sorrow has injured our capacity for nurturing and self love, Rose oil brings a sweet and gentle comfort, binding the "heart strings" from the Heart to the Mind.
In cases of a broken heart, injured from abuse or hurt, Rose oil can reach deep to warm the soul again and touch the deepest despair, restoring the trust that makes it possible to love again.
In Traditional Chinese Herbology, Mei Gui Hua (Flos Rosae Rugosae) is looked at in a beautifully poetic manor. Rose buds regulate the Qi Energy and harmonize the connection between the Spleen and Liver, soothing distention, pain, fullness and indigestion. Roses are also utilized in a tea for mildly moving Qi related to Menstrual Disorders. The Heart which is Yin, is paired with it Yang channel, the Small Intestines. It is stated that when emotional problems of the Heart take over and become excess in nature, we tend to see Urinary tract infections in the lower portion of the body.
Roses were called the "Queen of Flowers" by the Greek poet Sappho. The exquisite fragrance, sweet aroma, blushing colors and considerably therapeutic effects, ensures its special place in the perfumery and medicinal Materia Aromatica that is no less revered today!
Botanical name: rosa damascena
Use: fights infection, reduces inflammation, relieves muscle spasms.
Increases urination, bowel movement, regulates menstruation. Calms
nerves, decreases depression, stimulates sexual desire.
Perfume Note: Base
Blends well with: Jasmine, Fennel, Vetiver, Geranium, Clary Sage
Production method: steam distillation
Aromatherapy benefits: relaxing, soothing, sensual
Aroma type: sweet, floral
Safety Information: nontoxic, non irritant.
by Andrew Pacholyk, MS, L.Ac.
This year (2012) at the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show in Tucson, Arizona, I happened upon
the booth of Crystal Master, teacher and enthusiast, Steven Rosley.
Steven is a member of my Stones and Crystals community and I am familiar
with his discovery of Infinite. What I came to realize when talking with him,
was that this was the tip of the iceberg.
It was my pleasure to meet him for the first time. We briefly talked about one
of his most spiritual journeys he had ever had to Peru. He was telling me how
Peru is so mystical and that he had the chance to visit the capital of the Inca
world, CUSCO the oldest city in the Americas. He went to Machu Picchu on
11-11-11 where he conducted a meditation at 11:00am to 11:11 which ended with
two thunder claps!
He also told me of his newest discovery in Peru and that was the Shaman stones
called Chumpi Stones.
I had the opportunity to talk with him about another new discovery of his,
Sharylite. This alabaster stone is used to stimulate meditation helping us to
unlock the secrets of the days when the pyramids were built. This stone also
encourages forgiveness and helps us with composure during stressful times.
I finished my visit with an invitation from Steven to sit and meditate with
three of his famous crystal skulls, including Star Sirius. It was a wonderful
and moving experience for me! I am so grateful to have met him and I am pleased
that he is a member of our community.
You can learn more about Steven, his store and his adventures at:
http://crystalmaster.com and http://www.crystalskull.com
We are always looking for experts to write informative, interesting articles on alternative health, healing, the metaphysical arts, massage therapy, color therapy, yoga therapy...
Articles can be on your:
*expertise in your field.
*your knowledge in regards to healing.
*your work with clients and their energies.
* your methods, techniques and "bedside manners" to enhance health.
* knowledge you have regarding your therapies.
....so many subjects, so many articles!!
Just email them to us directly:
Write Article Comments, Questions? Please E-mail Us
My writing staff will go over them and we will post them both to the Alternative Answers community at YahooGroups.com and to our website at Peacefulmind.com under the appropriate therapies on our site!
You will be given full credit: Your name and business practice address and website address, and phone number (if you prefer).
We look forward to your "pearls of wisdom"!
What is your experience with alternative and complementary medicine? Sharing your own experiences often helps others. We'd love to know in the
View Shopping Cart/Checkout
Questions? Comments! Order Help? Please Contact Andrew
"Purveyors of Healthy Qi"
order online or call
917 843 3623 tel