Online Musings: Reader’s Digest Health Recipe


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The May 2016 Reader’s Digest cover story is “Secrets Your Body Is Trying To Tell You.” I love how RD gives credence to revolutionary cultural memes, like the mind/body connection and self-healing. Their mainstream, easy-to-digest reader appeal has been informing America and the rest of the world for almost a century.

The human body is designed to be self-healing. Unfortunately, our western medicine system gets in the way of that by maintaining that doctors, drugs and insurance plans hold the keys to your health. You can’t really listen to what your body is telling you it needs when your first instinct is to turn to the doctor to diagnose your symptom.

Your body is always doing something! There’s always one symptom or another popping up and doing its thing, expressing itself, and plenty that you’re not even aware of going on. It’s the body’s way of maintaining homeostasis minute by minute, hour after hour, year after year. Amazingly, the body manages to transmute everything that’s thrown at it — good diet, bad diet, pharmaceuticals, no pharmaceuticals, stress, abuse — and still live another day to tell about it. No health professional can claim such a record of success!

It seems the body’s wisdom is finally getting the recognition it deserves as diet, exercise and natural therapies continue to make the latest headlines in curing disease. As the meme grows stronger, so does the population doing it, putting the power of collective consciousness to work in our favor.

The “Secrets” article notes that the placebo effect is increasing. “An analysis of 84 chronic pain-drug trials found the placebo effect getting stronger. By 2013, patients receiving placebos experienced a 30 percent decrease in pain levels on average, compared with about 5 percent in 1990.”

Here’s other ways from RD that your body is letting you know what it really needs for better health, nutrition, sleep, pain relief and more:

Your mind can add years to your life. By keeping a positive attitude about aging and continuing to feel useful and happy, you’ll most likely live about seven extra years, according to Yale University surveys.

You can reshape your brain through meditation. According to MRI scans, the hippocampus — the part of the brain in charge of learning and memory — thickens after only a couple of months of mindful meditation. Brain-cell density also decreases in the amygdala, responsible for fear, anxiety, and stress. Those physical brain changes can alter your mood.

Think twice before you look down at your phone. Would you hang four bowling balls from your neck? Sixty pounds (or about the combined weight of those balls) is the same amount of force exerted when you tilt your head forward at about a 60-degree angle to text or e-mail from your smartphone. For the love and integrity of your cervical spine, raise that phone up to your sight line.

Before you grab a sweater as soon as you feel chilly, suck it up for a little while. When you shiver from cold, it stimulates hormones that convert energy-storing white fat into calorie-buring brown fat. Shivering for about ten to 15 minutes has similar hormonal effects as an hour of moderate exercise.

Don’t skip the flexibility exercises. Joints needs to be stretched as you get older. Connective tissue within ligaments and tendons becomes more rigid and brittle with age, which means a restricted range of motion and decreased flexibility. Pilates and yoga are two good options, but even simple stretches held for 10 to 30 seconds can keep you moving more easily.

To swing or not to swing. Arms are like pendulums that naturally sway as you move. You expend less energy when they do their thing and swing. Holding them still while you walk uses 12 percent more energy.

Mix your yogurt. That watery stuff sitting on the top is whey, and it’s filled with protein, bone-strengthening calcium, vitamin D, and gut-friendly probiotics. When you pour it in the sink, you miss out.

Tap your forehead to curb a craving. Next time a chocolate doughnut is calling your name, place your finger on your forehead and tap away your desire.

Color to reduce stress. When you are focused on something that’s concrete and repetitive, it activates portions of the parietal lobe, the same area of the brain connected to spirituality and one that tends to be active during meditation and prayer.

Carol Bedrosian is the publisher of Spirit of Change holistic magazine. Email carol@spiritofchange.org.

See also:
15 Simple Lifestyle Changes That Can Add Over A Decade To Your Life
How One Man In His 70s Avoids Alzheimer's And Stays Physically And Mentally Fitter Than People Half His Age

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November 12, 2019

The excitement of the Full “Beaver” Moon in Taurus dominates the busy morning. These early hours are highly energized and with multiple planets in supportive roles, chock full with important happenings. There are opportunities to renegotiate and renew…
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November 2019

No matter how broken or damaged you may feel, there is a deep well of stillness inside of you that is always there! Connected. Whole. Unchanging and Ever present. Yoga Nidra or Conscious Sleep...

Cost: $20 each session

Where:
YogaLife Institute of NH
6 Chestnut Street
Lower Level
Exeter, NH  03833
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Sponsor: YogaLife Institute of NH
Contact Name: Alice Bentley
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Come shine with us! Join us in harmony and in our goal to bring the light of Spiritualism forward to all those who are searching.

Where:
VFW Post 2597
775 Boston Rd, Rt 3A
Billerica, MA
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Sponsor: The Spiritualist Fellowship Church Of New England
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A beautiful collection of messages from Jeshua Ben Joseph (Jesus) that will transform your life, as it did his. Coming together to study these teachings, to ponder, to savor, to deepen our...

Cost: $25 per class

Where:
Heart and Soul Holistic Healing Center
130 Massapoag Avenue
Sharon, MA  02067
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Sponsor: Heart and Soul Holistic
Telephone: 781-258-9942
Contact Name: Barbara Ann Strassman
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In gratitude for your service, please join us at Dragonfly Wellness Center at 176 Jackson Road, Devens for refreshments and complimentary 15 minute sessions of: Chair massage Shamanic...

Cost: Free

Where:
Dragonfly Wellness Center
Dragonfly Wellness Center
176 Jackson Rd
Devens, MA  01432
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Sponsor: Yoga Anita
Telephone: 978-227-8297
Contact Name: Anita Perry
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2nd and 4th Monday of every month This psychic message circle is for anyone wishing to raise their connection using their psychic centers known as the “clairs.” Learn how to use...

Cost: $20

Where:
Messages From Heaven Healing and Learning Center
646 Central Street
Suite 3
Leominster, MA
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Come join us for a guided drumming circle to celebrate the November “Beaver” Moon. Arlene Dorischild will lead fellow drummers in a celebration to honor this special lunar event....

Cost: Donation

Where:
Peaceful Creations LLC
382 Boston Turnpike
Suite 102
Shrewsbury, MA  01545
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Sponsor: Peaceful Creations LLC
Telephone: 617-208-3333
Contact Name: Rebecca Resnik
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Free Evidence-Based Holistic Health Education Program at Wilbraham Senior Center The H.E.A.R.T. Program® (Health Empowerment and Real Transformation), created and instructed by Michelle...

Cost: Free

Where:
Wilbraham Senior Center
45 Post Office Park, #4502
Wilbraham, MA  01095
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Sponsor: Harmony Way
Telephone: 413-636-2475
Contact Name: Michelle Caron
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The Wellness Roundtable Holistic Practitioners Network creates an environment for wellness practitioners to inspire, educate and support one another, while building community and encouraging...

Cost: $20 (Drop-ins are welcome)

Where:
Sohum Yoga and Meditation Studio
30 Lyman St
#108B
Westborough, MA
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Sponsor: 01581
Telephone: 508-329-3338
Contact Name: Ritu Kapur
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How would it feel to have direct education on changing your feelings so you do start to ask for what you truly want? Each month, come and practice hands-on skills to get into the habit of...

Cost: $15

Where:
Awaken Holistic Counseling Services
2 Liberty St., Unit 2L
Newburyport, MA  01950
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Sponsor: Awaken Holistic Counseling Services, LLC
Telephone: 978-255-7893
Contact Name: Kerri Morrison
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This is a class that will teach you how to make your own wire-wrapped gemstone pendant! Don’t be discouraged—it is simpler than you think, and you’ll have great fun in...

Cost: Reg includes supplies $40 per person or $35 more than one

Where:
The Healing Power of Flowers - Heaven and Earth
68 Stiles Rd
Unit A
Salem , NH  03079
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Sponsor: The Healing Power of Flowers - Heaven and Earth
Telephone: 603-275-7688
Contact Name: Stacey
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Retire the Curse, Enhance the Blessing with Sally Sugatt, LICSW, C-IAYT Do you feel locked into your family’s karma (reactions, cycles or patterns)? Come explore how you have been...

Cost: $45

Where:
YogaLife Institute of NH
6 Chestnut Street
Lower Level
Exeter, NH  03833
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Sponsor: YogaLife Institute of NH
Contact Name: Alice Bentley
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Award winning artist, musician and channeler, David Young shares his amazing revelations. Orchestrated synchronicities over the course of four years uncover the truth of what happened 2,000...

Cost: $35

Where:
Peaceful Creations LLC
382 Boston Turnpike
Suite 102
Shrewsbury, MA  01545
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Sponsor: Peaceful Creations
Telephone: 617-208-3333
Contact Name: Rebecca Resnik
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Facilitator: Peyton Pugmire Fridays, 9/20, 10/18, 11/15, 12/20, 9:30am–10:30am Everyone leaves with a powerful message to inspire their weekend!  Join Peyton Pugmire,...

Cost: Pay What You Wish

Where:
Creative Spirit
80 Washington Street
Marblehead, MA  01945
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Telephone: 781-797-0389
Contact Name: Creative Spirit
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Four week series for girls ages 11 and up with Leigh Sloss This series of classes will focus on some of the most effective yoga and mindfulness skills for reducing stress and anxiety.  In a...

Cost: Series: $75; Drop in rate $20

Where:
YogaLife Institute of NH
6 Chestnut Street
Lower Level
Exeter, NH  03833
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Sponsor: YogaLife Institute of NH
Contact Name: Alice Bentley
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Learn the facts about Lyme Disease and how to protect yourself and your family! The Central Mass Lyme Foundation will host its 4th Lyme Disease Conference....

Cost: In advance: $30, at the door: $40

Where:
Sturbridge Host Hotel & Conference Center
366 Main St.
Exit 9 off Mass Pike
Sturbridge, MA
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Sponsor: The Central Mass Lyme Foundation
Contact Name: Michele Miller
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With Ross J. Miller, psychic healer, medium, regression therapist. In this unique, experiential workshop you’ll learn how to identify your guardian angels and spirit guides by name and...

Where:
Newton, MA


Telephone: (617) 527-3583
Contact Name: Ross J. Miller
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Instructor: Peyton Pugmire Ages 16+/Adult Like meditating with a paintbrush!  Come re-connect with yourself, your heart and soul, and your divine intuition—one brushstroke...

Cost: $120 (includes all supplies)

Where:
Creative Spirit
80 Washington Street
Marblehead, MA  01945
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Telephone: 781-797-0389
Contact Name: Creative Spirit
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Practice what you have learned in Yoga for Plantar Fasciitis Part 1 (Nov. 2). Relieve pain on the bottom of the foot. It's not the usual stretching. It's a gentle way to...

Cost: $35 preregister; $40 at the door

Where:
Sohum Yoga and Medittaion Studio
30 Lyman Street
Suite 108b (next to hair salon)
Westborough, MA, MA  01581
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Sponsor: Pat Lebau Yoga
Telephone: 508-393-5581
Contact Name: Pat Lebau
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Journey back into the experience of peace, harmony and inner power through this unique meditation practice. Explore the power of your thoughts and how they can bring you inner harmony and help you...

Cost: Free of charge as a community service, contributions welcome.

Where:
Inner Space Meditation Center and Gallery
1110 Massachusetts Ave.
Cambridge, MA
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Sponsor: Brahma Kumaris
Telephone: 617–547–1110
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Reiki Master Teacher Libby Barnett, M.S.W., integrates her healing skills with past experience as a medical social worker at Massachusetts General Hospital. 38 years experience. Reiki...

Where:
Weston, MA


Telephone: 603-654-2787
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Psychics, mediums, angel readers, spirit art. Reiki, chair massage, IET, Gaiadon Heart, crystal healings, etc. Sign yourself up for a few appointments and bring your friends! Appointments...

Where:
Women of Wisdom
118 Washington Street
North Easton, MA
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Telephone: 508-230-3680
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Learn to overcome spinal tensions through therapeutic postures, designed to decompress your spine and relieve pain. Taught by a certified yoga therapist, classes bring you through poses...

Cost: 5/$50

Where:
Bliss Through Yoga
484 Bedford St
East Bridgewater, MA  02333
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Telephone: 508-331-3564
Contact Name: Janice O'Brien
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