Monthly Archives: November 2007

Lip Sores & Cold Sores

Description
A Lip Sores & Cold Sores is a fluid-filled, painful blister that is usually on or around the lips. Other names for a cold sore are fever blister, oral herpes, labial herpes, herpes labialis, and herpes febrilis. Cold sores most often occur on the lips which distinguishes them from the common canker sore which is usually inside the mouth. Cold sores do not usually occur inside the mouth except during the initial episode. Canker sores usually form either on the tongue or inside the cheeks.

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

Cold sores are caused by a herpes virus. There are eight different kinds of human herpes viruses. Only two of these, herpes simplex types 1 and 2, can cause cold sores. It is commonly believed that herpes simplex virus type 1 infects above the waist and herpes simplex virus type 2 infects below the waist. This is not completely true. Both herpes virus type 1 and type 2 can cause herpes lesions on the lips or genitals, but recurrent cold sores are almost always type 1.

Oral herpes is very common. More than 60% of Americans have had a cold sore, and almost 25% of those infected experience recurrent outbreaks. Most of these persons became infected before age 10. Anyone can become infected by herpes virus and, once infected, the virus remains latent for life. Herpes viruses are spread from person to person by direct skin-to-skin contact. The highest risk for spreading the virus is the time period beginning with the appearance of blisters and ending with scab formation. However, infected persons need not have visible blisters to spread the infection to others since the virus may be present in the saliva without obvious oral lesions.

Viruses are different from bacteria. While bacteria are independent and can reproduce on their own, viruses enter human cells and force them to make more virus. The infected human cell is usually killed and releases thousands of new viruses. The cell death and resulting tissue damage causes the actual cold sores. In addition, the herpes virus can infect a cell and, instead of making the cell produce new viruses, it hides inside the cell and waits. The herpes virus hides in the nervous system. This is called “latency.” A latent virus can wait inside the nervous system for days, months, or even years. At some future time, the virus “awakens” and causes the cell to produce thou sands of new viruses that cause an active infection.

This process of latency and active infection is best understood by considering the cold sore cycle. An active infection is obvious because cold sores are pre sent. The first infection is called the “primary” infection. This active infection is then controlled by the body’s immune system and the sores heal. In between active infections, the virus is latent. At some point in the future, latent viruses become activated and once again cause sores. These are called “recurrent” infections. Although it is unknown what triggers latent virus to activate, several conditions seem to bring on infections. These include stress, illness, tiredness, exposure to sunlight, menstruation, fever, and diet.

Causes of Lip sore:
The following medical conditions are some of the possible causes of Lip sore. There are likely to be other possible causes, so ask your doctor about your symptoms.
1.Aphthous ulcer

2.Herpes simplex

3.Cold sores

4.Canker sores

5.Impetigo

6.Dermatitis

7.Contact dermatitis

8.Candidiasis

9.Leukoplakia

10.Mucocele cyst

11.Lip burn

12.Hereditary hemorrhagic telangiectasia

13.Zinc deficiency

14.Lichen planus

15.Behcet’s syndrome

16.Erythema multiforme

17.Chancre

18.Lip cancer

19.Certain drugs

But in In general the following most common:

1) People are often allergic to products containing petroleum and even some products labeled “hypoallergenic”. Occasionally people are allergic to their toothpaste and more often to their lipstick/lip balm. Many people are allergic to Neosporin and Chap Stick. I recommend Mentholatum Lip Balm often. It comes in tube, like Chap Stick. There are also homeopathic remedies to detox the body of what it is allergically responding to.

2) Sores on the outside corners of the mouth are usually vitamin deficiencies—especially vitamin B6.

3) Sores on the top and bottom lip edge are often allergies to something being put on the lips and often this can be aggravated by sunshine.

4) Canker sores, herpes sores and cold sores are often related to what it is in the person’s life that they are   biting their tongue  about or not saying out loud and is also accentuated by stress, poor diet, not enough raw foods, and sleep issues (in combination of course).

5) Sores inside the lip and under the tongue can sometimes be viral in origin or an allergy to something. I know a few people who are allergic to nutmeg which causes a little vesicle to form under the tongue on the frenulum.

6) White sores on the mouth are usually caused from yeast (Candida). Try getting a lip product that contains Myrrh essential oil. You will also have incorporate lifestyle changes to overcome the yeast inside your system.

click to see the pictures

Click to learn more about treatment of Cold Sores, fever etc. http://www.animated-teeth.com/cold_sores/t4_cold_sores_treatments.htm

Diagnosis
Because oral herpes is so common, it is diagnosed primarily by symptoms. It can be diagnosed and treated by the family doctor, dermatologists (doctors who specialize in skin diseases) and infectious disease specialists. Laboratory tests may be performed to look for the virus. Because healing sores do not shed much virus, a sample from an open sore would be taken for viral culture. A sterile cotton swab would be wiped over open sores and the sample used to infect human cells in culture. Cells that are killed by the herpes virus have a certain appearance under microscopic examination. The results of this test are available within two to 10 days.

Oral herpes may resemble a bacterial infection called impetigo. This skin infection is most commonly seen in children and causes herpes-like blisters around the mouth and nose. Also, because oral herpes can occur inside the mouth, the blisters could be mistaken for common canker sores. Therefore, the doctor would need to determine whether the blisters are oral herpes, canker sores, or impetigo. The diagnosis and treatment of herpes infections should be covered by most insurance providers.

Treatment:
There is no cure for herpes virus infections. There are antiviral drugs available that have some effect on lessening the symptoms and decreasing the length of herpes outbreaks. There is evidence that some may also prevent future outbreaks. These antiviral drugs work by interfering with the replication of the viruses, and are most effective when taken as early in the infection process as possible. For the best results, drug treatment should begin during the prodrome stage before blisters are visible. Depending on the length of the outbreak, drug treatment could continue for up to 10 days.

Acyclovir (Zovirax) is the drug of choice for herpes infection and can be given intravenously or taken by mouth. It can be applied directly to sores as an ointment, but is not very useful in this form. A liquid form for children is also available. Acyclovir is effective in treating both the primary infection and recurrent outbreaks. When taken by mouth to prevent an outbreak, acyclovir reduces the frequency of herpes outbreaks.

During an outbreak of cold sores, salty foods, citrus foods (oranges etc.), and other foods that irritate the sores should be avoided. Wash the sores once or twice a day with warm, soapy water and pat gently to dry. Over-the-counter lip products that contain the chemical phenol (such as Blistex Medicated Lip Ointment) and numbing ointments (Anbesol) help to relieve cold sores. A bandage may be placed over the sores to protect them and prevent spreading the virus to other sites on the lips or face. Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) may be taken if necessary to reduce pain and fever.

Alternative treatment:
Vitamin and mineral supplements and diet may have an effect on the recurrence and duration of cold sores. In general, cold sore sufferers should eat a healthy diet of unprocessed foods such as vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Alcohol, caffeine, and sugar should be avoided.
An imbalance in the amino acids lysine and arginine is thought to be one contributing factor in herpes virus outbreaks. A diet that is rich in the amino acid lysine may help prevent recurrences of cold sores. Foods which contain high levels of lysine include most vegetables, legumes, fish, turkey, and chicken. In one study, patients taking lysine supplements had milder symptoms during an outbreak, a shorter healing time, and had fewer outbreaks than patients who did not take lysine. Patients should take 1,000 mg of lysine three times a day during a cold sore outbreak and 500 mg daily on an ongoing basis to prevent recurrences. Intake of the amino acid arginine should be reduced. Foods rich in arginine that should be avoided are chocolate, peanuts, almonds, and other nuts and seeds.

Vitamin C and bioflavonoids (a substance in fruits that helps the body to absorb and use vitamin C) have been shown to reduce the duration of a cold sore outbreak and reduce the number of sores. The vitamin B complex includes important vitamins that support the nervous system where viruses can hide out. B complex vitamins can also help manage stress, an important contributing factor to the outbreak of herpes viruses. Applying the oil in vitamin E capsules directly to cold sores may provide relief. Zinc lozenges appear to affect the reproduction of viruses and also enhance the immune system. Ointments containing lemon balm (Melissa officinalis) or licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra) and peppermint (Mentha piperita) have been shown to help cold sores heal.

Prognosis
Oral herpes can be painful and embarrassing but, it is not a serious infection. There is no cure for oral herpes, but outbreaks usually occur less frequently after age 35. The spread of the herpes virus to the eyes is very serious. The herpes virus can infect the cells in the cornea and cause scarring that may impair vision.
Home Care :

Mouth sores generally last 10 to 14 days, even if you don’t do anything. They sometimes last up to 6 weeks. The following steps can make you feel better:

  • Gargle with cool water or eat popsicles. This is particularly helpful if you have a mouth burn.
  • Avoid hot beverages and foods, spicy and salty foods, and citrus.
  • Take pain relievers like acetaminophen.

For canker sores:

  • Rinse with salt water.
  • Apply a thin paste of baking soda and water.
  • Mix 1 part hydrogen peroxide with 1 part water and apply this mixture to the lesions using a cotton swab.

Nonprescription preparations, like Orabase, can protect a sore inside the lip and on the gums. Blistex or Campho-Phenique may provide some relief of canker sores and fever blisters, especially if applied when the sore initially appears.

Additional steps that may help cold sores or fever blisters:

  • Apply ice to the lesion.
  • Take L-lysine tablets.

Anti-viral medications for herpes lesions of the mouth may be recommended by your doctor. Some experts feel that they shorten the time that the blisters are present, while others claim that these drugs make no difference.

When to Contact a Medical Professional :

Call your doctor if:

  • The sore begins soon after you start a new medication
  • You have large white patches on the roof of your mouth or your tongue (this may be thrush or another type of lesion)
  • Your mouth sore lasts longer than 2 weeks
  • You are immunocompromised (for example, from HIV or cancer)
  • You have other symptoms like fever, skin rash, drooling, or difficulty swallowing

What to Expect at Your Office Visit:

Your doctor will perform a physical examination, focusing on your mouth and tongue. Medical history questions may include the following:

  • Are the sores on your lips, gums, tongue, lining of your cheeks, or elsewhere?
  • Are the sores open ulcers?
  • Are there large, white patches on the roof of the mouth or on your tongue?
  • How long have you had the mouth sores? More than 2 weeks?
  • Have you ever had sores of this type before?
  • What medications do you take?
  • Do you have other symptoms like fever, sore throat, or breath odor?

Treatment may depend on the underlying cause of the mouth sore.

A topical anesthetic (applied to a localized area of the skin) such as lidocaine or xylocaine may be used to relieve pain (but should be avoided in children).

An antifungal medication may be prescribed for oral thrush (a yeast infection).

An antiviral medication may be prescribed for herpes lesions (although, some feel that this does not shorten the length of time that the lesions are present)

Antibiotics may be prescribed for severe or persistent canker sores.

Prevention:
The only way to prevent oral herpes is to avoid contact with infected persons. This is not an easy solution because many people are not aware that they are infected and can easily infect others. Currently there are no herpes vaccines available, although herpes vaccines are being tested.

Several practices can reduce the occurrence of cold sores and the spread of virus to other body locations or people. These practices are:
*Avoidance of sun exposure to the face. Before getting prolonged exposure to the sun, apply sunscreen to the face and especially to the lips. Wearing a hat with a large brim is also helpful.
*Avoid touching cold sores. Squeezing, picking, or pinching blisters can allow the virus to spread to other parts of the lips or face and infect those sites.
*Wash hands frequently. Persons with oral herpes should wash their hands carefully before touching others. An infected person can spread the virus to others even when he or she has no obvious blisters.
*Avoid contact with others during active infection. Infected persons should avoid kissing or sexual contact with others until after the cold sores have healed.
*Wear gloves when applying ointment to a child’s sore.
*Be especially careful with infants. Never kiss the eyes or lips of a baby who is under six months old.
*Be watchful of infected children. Do not allow infected children to share toys that may be put into the mouth. Toys that have been mouthed should be disinfected before other children play with them.
*Maintain good general health. A healthy diet, plenty of sleep, and exercise help to minimize the chance of getting a cold or the flu, which are known to bring on cold sores. Also, good general health keeps the immune system strong; this helps to keep the virus in check and prevents outbreaks.

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose

Resources:
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/003059.htm
http://ezinearticles.com/?Six-Common-Causes-of-Lip-Sores&id=421609
http://www.wrongdiagnosis.com/symptoms/lip_sores/causes.htm

http://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Cold+Sore

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Tobacco

Botanical Name: Nicotiana tabacum
Family: Solanaceae
Genus: Nicotiana
Species: N. tabacum
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Solanales

Synonyms:
Tabacca. Tabaci Folia (B.P.C.).
Part Used: Leaves, cured and dried.
Habitat: Virginia, America; and cultivated with other species in China, Turkey, Greece, Holland, France, Germany and most sub-tropical countries.

Description: The genus derives its name from Joan Nicot, a Portuguese who introduced the Tobacco plant into France. The specific name being derived from the Haitian word for the pipe in which the herb is smoked. Tobacco is an annual, with a long fibrous root, stem erect, round, hairy, and viscid; it branches near the top and is from 3 to 6 feet high. Leaves large, numerous, alternate, sessile, somewhat decurrent, ovate, lanceolate, pointed, entire, slightly viscid and hairy, pale-green colour, brittle, narcotic odour, with a nauseous, bitter acrid taste. Nicotine is a volatile oil, inflammable, powerfully alkaline, with an acrid smell and a burning taste. By distillation with water it yields a concrete volatile oil termed nicotianin or Tobacco camphor, which is tasteless, crystalline, and smells of Tobacco; other constituents are albumen, resin, gum, and inorganic matters.

click to see the pictures

Cultivation

Broadleaf tobacco
Tobacco plants growing in a field in Intercourse, Pennsylvania
Sowing
Tobacco seeds are scattered onto the surface of the soil, as their germination is activated by light. In colonial Virginia, seedbeds were fertilized with wood ash or animal manure (frequently powdered horse manure). Seedbeds were then covered with branches to protect the young plants from frost damage. These plants were left to grow until around April.

In the nineteenth century, young plants came under increasing attack from the flea beetle (Epitrix cucumeris or Epitrix pubescens), causing destruction of half the United States tobacco crop in 1876. In the years afterward, many experiments were attempted and discussed to control the flea beetle. By 1880 it was discovered that replacing the branches with a frame covered by thin fabric would effectively protect plants from the beetle. This practice spread until it became ubiquitous in the 1890s.

Today, in the United States, unlike other countries, tobacco is often fertilized with the mineral apatite in order to partially starve the plant for nitrogen, which changes the taste. This (together with the use of licorice and other additives) accounts for the different flavor of American cigarettes from those available in other countries. There is, however, some suggestion that this may have adverse health effects attributable to the content of apatite.

Transplanting
After the plants have reached a certain height, they are transplanted into fields. This was originally done by making a relatively large hole in the tilled earth with a tobacco peg, then placing the small plant in the hole. Various mechanical tobacco planters were invented throughout the late 19th and early 20th century to automate this process, making a hole, fertilizing it, and guiding a plant into the hole with one motion.

Harvest
Tobacco is harvested in one of two ways. In the oldest method, the entire plant is harvested at once by cutting off the stalk at the ground with a curved knife. In the nineteenth century, bright tobacco began to be harvested by pulling individual leaves off the stalk as they ripened. The leaves ripen from the ground upwards, so a field of tobacco may go through several “pullings” before the tobacco is entirely harvested, and the stalks may be turned into the soil. “Cropping”, “pulling”, and “priming” are terms for pulling leaves off tobacco. Leaves are cropped as they ripen, from the bottom of the stalk up. The first crop at the very bottom of the stalks are called “sand lugs”, as they are often against the ground and are coated with dirt splashed up when it rains. Sand lugs weigh the most, and are most difficult to work with. Originally workers cropped the tobacco and placed it on animal-pulled sleds. Eventually tractors with wagons were used to transport leaves to the stringer, an apparatus which uses twine to sew leaves onto a stick.

Some farmers use “tobacco harvesters” – basically a trailer pulled behind a tractor. The harvester is a wheeled sled or trailer that has seats for the croppers to sit on and seats just in front of these for the “stringers” to sit on. The croppers pull the leaves off in handfuls, and pass these to the “stringer”, who loops twine around the handfuls of tobacco and hangs them on a long wooden square pole. Traditionally, the croppers, down in the dark and wet, with their faces getting slapped by the huge tobacco leaves, were men, and the stringers seated on the higher elevated seats were women. The harvester has places for four teams of workers: eight people cropping and stringing, plus a packer who takes the heavy strung poles of wet green tobacco from the stringers and packs them onto the pallet section of the harvester, plus a driver, making the total crew of each harvester 10 people. Interestingly, the outer seats are suspended from the harvester – slung out over to fit into the aisles of tobacco. As these seats are suspended it is important to balance the weight of the two outside teams

(similar to a playground see-saw). Having too heavy or light a person in an unbalanced combination often results in the harvester tipping over especially when turning around at the end of a lane. Water tanks are a common feature on the harvester due to heat, and danger of dehydration for the workers. Salt tablets sometimes get used as well.

Constituents: The most important constituent is the alkaloid Nicotine, nicotianin, nicotinine, nicoteine, nicoteline. After leaves are smoked the nicotine decomposes into pyridine, furfurol, collidine, hydrocyanic acid, carbon-monoxide, etc. The poisonous effects of Tobacco smoke are due to these substances of decomposed nicotine.

Medicinal Action and Uses: A local irritant; if used as snuff it causes violent sneezing, also a copious secretion of mucous; chewed, it increases the flow of saliva by irritating the mucous membrane of the mouth; injected into the rectum it acts as a cathartic. In large doses it produces nausea, vomiting, sweats and great muscular weakness.

The alkaloid nicotine is a virulent poison producing great disturbance in the digestive and circulatory organs. It innervates the heart, causing palpitation and cardiac irregularities and vascular contraction, and is considered one of the causes of arterial degeneration.

Nicotine is very like coniine and lobeline in its pharmacological action, and the pyridines in the smoke modify very slightly its action.

Tobacco was once used as a relaxant, but is no longer employed except occasionally in chronic asthma. Its active principle is readily absorbed by the skin, and serious, even fatal, poisoning, from a too free application of it to the surface of the skin has resulted.

The smoke acts on the brain, causing nausea, vomiting and drowsiness.

Medicinally it is used as a sedative, diuretic, expectorant, discutient, and sialagogue, and internally only as an emetic, when all other emetics fail. The smoke injected into the rectum or the leaf rolled into a suppository has been beneficial in strangulated hernia, also for obstinate constipation, due to spasm of the bowels, also for retention of urine, spasmodic urethral stricture, hysterical convulsions, worms, and in spasms caused by lead, for croup, and inflammation of the peritoneum, to produce evacuation of the bowels, moderating reaction and dispelling tympanitis, and also in tetanus.

To inject the smoke it should be blown into milk and injected, for croup and spasms of the rima glottides it is made into a plaster with Scotch snuff and lard and applied to throat and breast, and has proved very effectual. A cataplasm of the leaves may be used as an ointment for cutaneous diseases. The leaves in combination with the leaves of belladonna or stramonium make an excellent application for obstinate ulcers, painful tremors and spasmodic affections. A wet Tobacco leaf applied to piles is a certain cure. The inspissated juice cures facial neuralgia if rubbed along the tracks of the affected nerve.

The quantity of the injection must never exceed a scruple to begin with; half a drachm has been known to produce amaurosis and other eye affections, deafness, etc.

The Tobacco plant was introduced into England by Sir Walter Raleigh and his friends in 1586, and at first met with violent opposition.

Kings prohibited it, Popes pronounced against it in Bulls, and in the East Sultans condemned Tobacco smokers to cruel deaths. Three hundred years later, in 1885, the leaves were official in the British Pharmacopoeia.

Externally nicotine is an antiseptic. It is eliminated partly by the lungs, but chiefly in the urine, the secretion of which it increases. Formerly Tobacco in the form of an enema of the leaves was used to relax muscular spasms, to facilitate the reduction of dislocations.

A pipe smoked after breakfast assists the action of the bowels.

The pituri plant contains an alkaloid, Pitarine, similar to nicotine, and the leaves are used in Australia instead of Tobacco. An infusion of Tobacco is generally used in horticulture as an insecticide. In cases of nicotine poisoning, the stomach should be quickly emptied, and repeated doses of tannic acid given, the person

kept very warm in bed, and stimulants such as caffeine, strychnine, or atropine given, or if there are signs of respiratory failure, oxygen must be given at once.

Medical Uses Of Tobacco

A history of the medicinal use of tobacco 1492-1860.

Tobacco: The antibody plant; Medical uses of tobacco

Uses of Tobacco in the New World
Other Species:
Tobacco (Nicotiana rustica). Turkish Tobacco is grown in all parts of the globe.

N. quadrivalis, affording Tobacco to the Indians of the Missouri and Columbia Rivers, has, as the name implies, four-valve capsules.

N. fruticosa – habitat, China – is a very handsome plant and differs from the other varieties in its sharp-pointed capsules.

N. persica. Cultivated in Persia; is the source of Persian Tobacco.

N. repandu. Cultivated in Central and southern North America. Havannah is used in the manufacture of the best cigars.

Latakria Tobacco (syn. N. Tabacum) is the only species cultivated in Cuba.

N. latissima yields the Tobacco known as Orinoco.

N. multivulvis has several valved capsules.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:
http://botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/t/tobacc21.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tobacco

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Foods May Affect Offspring’s Gender

LONDON: Eating certain foods in the run up to conception may influence the sex of a woman’s offspring, suggests a new study conducted on mice.

The new study may give credence to common belief that expecting mothers who want a boy should eat more red meat and salty snacks and fish, vegetables, chocolates and sweets if they want a girl. Lead researcher Elissa Cameron and colleagues at the University of Pretoria in South Africa examined how changes in diet might influence sex ratios — the proportion of males to females in a population.

For this, they altered the levels of blood sugar in female mice during conception, by feeding the mice a steroid called dexamethasone (DEX) — a steroid which inhibits the transport of glucose into the bloodstream.

The scientists gave 20 female mice water dosed with DEX during conception. They gave it during the first three days when the females were exposed to males. Afterwards, the mice were given plain water. The researchers measured the blood-sugar levels of these mice, as well as that of 20 controlled females several times during the experiment.

The average blood-glucose levels in mice that received steroid dropped from 6.47 to 5.24 millimoles/litre. The team found that 53% of the pups born to the control females mice were male whereas only 41% of those born to the mice receiving DEX were male, reported the online edition of ‘New Scientist’.

However, the scientists said exactly how a drop in blood sugar causes more female births remains unclear. But the opposite also seems to work. A previous study involving diabetic mice, found that rodents with high blood sugar levels produced more male offspring than expected.

Off late, research into eating and smoking habits during conception has thrown up lot of information. A recent study linked moderate drinking during pregnancy to thousands of serious childhood disorders including autism.

Dr Maggie Watts, vice chairman on alcohol for the Scottish Association of Alcohol and Drug Action Teams, fears that even low levels of drinking could be related to a range of behavioural problems in young children, the cause of which has previously been a mystery.

Sources: The Times Of India

Brand-New Day

Inner Sunrise
When today is not going well, it is tempting to focus on tomorrow as a blank slate with all the possibilities that newness provides. It is true that tomorrow will be a brand-new day, but we do not have to wait until tomorrow to start fresh. We can start fresh at any moment, clearing our energy field of any negativity that has accumulated, and call this very moment the beginning of our brand-new day.

There is something about the sunrise and the first few hours of the morning that make us feel cleansed and rejuvenated, ready to move forward enthusiastically. As the day wears on, we lose some of this dynamic energy and the inspiration it provides. This may be why we look forward to tomorrow as providing the possibility of renewal. Many traditions consider the light of the rising sun to be particularly divine in its origins; this is why so many people in the world face east when performing ritual. We too can cultivate that rising sun energy inside ourselves, carrying it with us to light our way through any time of day or night, drawing on its power to awaken and renew our spirits.

One simple way to do this is to carry an image or a photograph of the rising sun with us in our wallet or purse. We can also post this image on our wall at work or at home, or have it as our screensaver on our computer. When we feel the need to start fresh, we can take a moment to gaze at the image, allowing its light to enter into our hearts. As we do this, we might say out loud or quietly to ourselves, I am ready to let go of the past and start anew. We might visualize anything we want to release leaving us as we exhale, and as we inhale, we can take in the fresh energy of the eastern sun, allowing it to light the way to a brand-new day.

Sources: Daily Om

10 Ways to Teach Your Children the Value of a Healthy Lifestyle

1. Practice what you preach. It’s considerably easier to convince your children to adopt healthy habits if you’re doing the same

. 2. Involve the whole family. Establishing a regular pattern of exercising as a family accomplishes two important things: It keeps everyone in shape and serves as important bonding time.

3. Limit screen time. Too much time watching television or playing video/computer games can lead to excessive snacking and a sedentary lifestyle.

4. Make it fun. Let your children discover which specific healthy activities they truly enjoy. If they don’t like it, they won’t stick with it.

5. Focus on the positives. Celebrate your children’s successes and help them develop a healthy self-image. Low self-esteem can lead to poor eating, exercise and lifestyle habits.

6. Set goals and limits. If goals are excessively restrictive or vague, children are less likely to rise to the challenge. Establish clear nutrition and exercise goals (dessert two times a week; a half-hour walk five times a week, etc.).

7. Reward wisely. Rather than rewarding children with desserts or sugary snacks (a common tactic), find healthy ways to show a job well done.

8. Turn them into chefs. Get your children involved in planning and preparing meals; then sit down at the dinner table together and enjoy the healthy meal you’ve created together.

9. Knowledge is power. Teach children the value of reading food labels and being aware of the healthy (and not so healthy) ingredients in the foods they eat.

10. Don’t pass the buck. You’re the parent – that means it’s up to you to teach your children about good health. School and health care providers can only do so much.

Sources:Your Health Newsletter (dctyh@mail4.mpamedia.com)