HERBS FOR HEALTH MANAGEMENT

Herbs are a foundational root in medicine and health treatments, dating back thousands of years throughout every culture around the world. Modern Western herbalism comes from ancient Egypt. The Greeks developed a comprehensive philosophy of herbal medicine by 100 BCE and the Romans built upon it to create a variety of medical practices, some of which are still used today.

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ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE IMPACTS PSYCHOLOGICAL HARDINESS

Psychological hardiness is an individual’s resistance to stress, anxiety and depression. It includes the ability to withstand grief and accept the loss of loved ones. Alternative medicine is a more popular term for health and wellness therapies that have typically not been part of conventional Western medical approaches but are often used along with conventional medicinal protocols.  Coping and dealing with stress in a positive manner play a major role in maintaining the balance needed for health and well-being.

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ALTERNATIVE REMEDIES FOR ANXIETY AND DEPRESSION

Interest in complimentary and alternative medicine (CAM) is increasing as consumers and health care professionals search for additional ways to treat anxiety, depression and other mental health disorders. Some of these remedies include:

St. John’s Wort.  More than 30 studies show it to be effective for treatment of mild forms of depression,…

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Stimulating your brain.  Challenge yourself to learn something new. Read to stay informed. Do crossword puzzles. Take a class at a local junior college.


Staying social and maintaining friendships.  A lunch with a friend is a social event.


Working on your mental health.  Your cognitive health is largely determined by how well your brain is able to function and how well you think, reason and problem solve. Cognitive health includes remembering things, learning things and using language. A healthy brain goes hand in hand with a healthy body. Many of the things you do to help your body health also help your brain health.      

The hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease is an individual’s cognitive decline. Some memory problems are normal with aging. Cognitive decline that happens quickly or hampers day-to-day activity is termed dementia. Alzheimer’s may damage brain cells and cause dementia, making it hard to remember, learn and communicate. It may cause changes in personality as well as depression.


The dementia presented by Alzheimer’s cannot be prevented, but it may be slowed. What can help you stay healthy and avoid this disease and/or slow the progression of the effects of Alzheimer’s? What can slow the speed of the development of dementia? Healthy habits lived each day are the key. Some healthy habits that accomplish this slowing of dementia include:


Managing bodily health.  Having some disease processes, such as obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure, may increase your risk for Alzheimer’s. Therefore, eating a healthy diet and losing weight are appropriate defense measures. You can’t go wrong eating healthily.


Avoiding fad diets.  Eat a rainbow of colors with a variety of fruits and vegetables. A diet high in fruits, vegetables and whole grains reduces your risk for chronic disease and it may also protect brain function. The antioxidants in leafy greens and dark-skinned and cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage and turnips are especially protective.

SLOWING THE EFFECTS OF ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE

JEAN JEFFERS

Jean is an RN with an MSN from University of Cincinnati. She is a staff writer for Living Well 60 Plus and Health & Wellness magazines.

more articles by jean jeffers

Other good choices include beets, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, eggplant, kale, red peppers and spinach.


Avoiding trans fats.  Trans fats are found in baked goods such as donuts, sweet rolls, pies and cakes. These fats are listed as hydrogenated vegetable oil or partially hydrogenated vegetable oil. They are not conductive to weight loss or overall health.


Getting your omega 3 fatty acids.  These are found in fish such as tuna, mackerel and herring.


Staying physically active.  Do something that raises your heart rate for at least 30 minutes five times a week. Walking, hiking, bicycling and swimming are good examples. Engage in these activities with others. That makes it easier to continue doing them.


Considering vitamins. Talk with your doctor about the pros and cons of taking vitamins or supplements.