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Sleep Can Help You Lose Weight

In his recent book, The Jerusalem Diet (WaterBrook), pastor Ted Haggard cites a CBS News report on the link between obesity and sleep deprivation. The report was based on an article in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism and explained that sleep affects the body's production of hormones, including leptin, which helps control appetite.

Leptin levels rise when we sleep, telling the brain that the body has stored up enough food. "If you deprive your body of sleep," Haggard warns, "you may develop a shortage of this hormone. And...your body may start asking for food it doesn't really need." read more

Natural Menopause Management

According to Janet Macarro, Ph.D., CNC, in her book Midlife Meltdown (Siloam), it's time to start "rethinking midlife hormonal health."

She encourages the use of the following natural supplements * to alleviate some of the symptoms brought on by menopause:

Black cohosh capsules

80-160 mg per day
Anxiety, hot flashes, night sweats, vaginaldryness, depression, heart palpitations, headaches, sleeplessness read more

Got Chocolate

According to medical doctor Don Colbert, a recent study shows that chocolate--the dark variety, that is--can be good for you. Dark chocolate, Colbert says, contains high levels of flavonoids, an antioxidant that protects the heart and blood vessels from the damaging stress of free radicals. This beloved treat can actually increase the levels of antioxidants in the blood by about 20 percent! Colbert recommends restraint, however, because the high sugar content of most chocolate candy causes more health problems than chocolate can protect you from. So if you get chocolate, get only the dark--and eat it only in moderation. read more

Did You Know...

That many of our modern-day medicines are derived from herbs? That's because "herbal plants are time-tested and approved sources of healing," writes nutritionist and women's health specialist Janet Maccaro in her book, Natural Health Remedies: An A-Z Family Guide. Though some Americans are still skeptical, Europeans have used herbs as medicines for centuries. So the next time you're ill, consider asking your doctor for an herbal alternative to the medicine he prescribes. It may provide the same benefit without the negative side effects! read more

Proper Nutrition and Recovery from Eating Disorders

In his book Hope, Help and Healing for Eating Disorders (Shaw, 2002), Christian psychologist and certified eating disorder specialist Gregory L. Jantz, Ph.D., offers a body-mind-spirit approach to healing from eating disorders.

Jantz advocates proper nutrition as an important and often overlooked aspect of treatment for eating disorders. His nutrition-based rehabilitation program starts with nutrients that support the body systems most compromised by an eating disorder and works toward restoration of a person's complete nutritional health.

As a person recovering from an eating disorder works toward making healthy eating choices, Jantz offers the following guidelines, which he has adapted from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: read more

Six Natural Weapons to Fight Diabetes

We often hear about avoiding the foods and beverages that can raise our risk of developing diabetes such as alcohol, fast food, processed meats, high-sugar foods, soft drinks and so on. But according to the October 2006 issue of Shape magazine, here are six things you should add to your diet to arm your body's defenses in this battle: read more

Mind Over Matter

One way to avoid putting on weight, according to fitness trainer Dino Nowak, is to stop eating mindlessly, particularly while engaging in other activities such as watching TV. In his book The Final Makeover (Siloam), Nowak suggests that if you eat in front of a TV or computer screen you do not pay attention to how much you are consuming and can easily exceed a healthful amount. If the snack you choose is not good for you (potato chips, cookies, ice cream), the negative effects of the indulgence are that much worse. So from now on, use your head when you go to the pantry: Select a nutritional food, put only one serving on a plate or into a bowl, and eat it purposefully--to satisfy hunger--rather than out of mere habit or a need to keep your hands busy during a sedentary activity. read more

How 'bout Them Apples

You've probably never thought of apples as a significant part of a weight-loss regimen, but apples are a great source of fiber, and fiber not only improves digestion but also encourages weight loss. A medium-sized apple contains about five grams of fiber, more than most commercially made cereals--even the health food store variety. They also have almost no fat or cholesterol, so they are a healthy choice for a snack or dessert. read more

Prescription For a Highly Healthy Holiday

If you’re celebrating more but enjoying it less, a few small changes will help you enter into the joy of the season.

When I entered the exam room, I found Erin staring blankly out the window. She looked as if she was in another world. The note from my nurse said only, "Post-holiday depression. Wants to talk."

As I pulled out my stool and had a seat, I greeted her. "Good morning, Erin. What's up?" read more

Cancer Prevention

It is not difficult to understand that the easiest and best way to beat cancer in your own body is through prevention. This offensive strategy against disease requires a lifestyle that should be pursued by everyone living in today's polluted environment. If you have had cancer or are in remission, if you have cancer now or are in a particularly high-risk group, or even if you feel it will not touch you, developing a cancer-free lifestyle is the only insurance policy available for good health.

One key in developing a cancer-free lifestyle is ongoing, moderate exercise. Research indicates that those who use up 2,000 calories or more in physical activity each week have a third less risk of getting all types of cancer as compared to sedentary individuals. One study found that women who exercise an average of four hours per week reduced their risk of breast cancer by 50 percent compared to that of age-matched inactive women. Exercise may also help boost the immune system and even help promote such healthy habits as getting a good night's sleep.

And the best exercise may not be as strenuous as you think. Brisk walking, not jogging or pumping iron, may well prove to be the perfect exercise. This form of exercise provides the ideal opportunity for worship and prayer as well. Just take along a tape player loaded with your favorite worship music, and you're off to a healthier physical and spiritual life! read more

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