By Michelle Pearce, PhD
Over one third of people in the US are on a diet. Even when diets are successful, 50% of people gain the weight back after 12 months or less. With 70% of Americans obese or overweight, we desperately need to find a way to better manage our weight and take care of our bodies.
Thankfully psychologists have figured out a more effective way of eating and managing our waistlines. What they have discovered is not a diet or a weight loss gimmick. It’s not about prioritizing one type of food over others or banishing a food group from your plate. In fact, it has less to do with what you eat than with how and why you eat. This more effective way of eating is called mindful eating.
By Kevin W. Chen, PhD, MPH
As part of traditional Chinese medicine practice, Qigong refers to the mind-body exercises that integrate breathing, mind, and body adjustments into one. Although not all Qigong forms were created for healing purposes, there are many documented health benefits from different Qigong practices, and heart health is one of the well-studied areas. In this short blog, I would like to summarize the known benefits of Qigong practice for heart health based on scientific literature.
By Michelle Peralta
It’s a new year and a new you! Many people make the mistake of having big goals without the proper stepping stones to reach them. Sometimes we do not know where to start or who to ask. Other times we can be so overwhelmed with the vast number of options available to us. Here is a list of phone apps tested by our team and friends that can provide you support as you live a healthier 2017 and beyond.
By Brian Morrison, DC
Don’t just sit there! “Sitting is the new smoking,” wrote Dr. James Levine in his book, Get Up!: Why Your Chair is Killing You and What You Can Do About It. In an L.A. Times interview, he proclaims: “Sitting is more dangerous than smoking, kills more people than HIV and is more treacherous than parachuting. We are sitting ourselves to death.”
I am frequently asked by patients which chair I recommend for their office or cubical. My reply? “The one you get out of!”
By Kalpana Shere-Wolfe, MD
This is a time of year where regardless of our cultural and spiritual backgrounds, we celebrate love, family, peace and hope. It can be easy to get swept away or overwhelmed with preparations, holiday meals, parties, and gift giving. As the hustle and bustle of the holiday season approaches, staying grounded and centered can be more important than ever. Meditation is a wonderful way to achieve this but as the yogis clearly understood stilling the mind is easier said than done. Sound is a wonderful tool for facilitating meditation – it can soothe, tame and center even the most chaotic and busy minds. Whether you are a novice or a long time meditator, sacred sound can keep peace, joy and light at the forefront of the holidays.
Sound is universal and timeless. Peoples from all beliefs, backgrounds and times – ancient Egyptians, Greeks, Shamans, American Indians, Aborigines and more - have used sound for healing and transformation. There are many examples of sound being referenced as a primordial force in our existence. In Vedic tradition, sound is considered a means to link with the Divine or Universal Force – “tasya vacakah pranavah”. The American Indians reference a Spider-Woman who created all forms of life and breathed life by singing Creation song. In the Christian tradition, the Bible states “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
By Elizabeth Parker, PhD
Construction of an employee garden at MedStar Montgomery Medical Center (MMMC) in collaboration with the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine is finally complete! Conveniently located on the hospital property close to the cafeteria and employee entrance, this space adds natural beauty and functional resources for hospital employees to have access to the natural environment. The garden will be operated and maintained by the MMMC hospital employees. The planters along the edge of the sidewalk will be used for growing seasonal vegetables, and the lower beds contain flowers that are native to the area. In addition to the vegetable garden and a flower garden, there is also outdoor seating for the employees to sit and relax. Garden aims to add beauty, improve morale and provide edible vegetation to employees.
By Jason Bosley-Smith, MS, LDN, CNS, FDN
Memory, focus, thought, creativity, analysis. Our brains perform these functions and many more in the daily processing of information. Perhaps even more essential, our brains regulate the bodily processes necessary for basic survival. Even the slightest impairment to brain function can be felt in dramatic fashion throughout our bodies whether it’s a lack of mental clarity, altered mood, or a downstream effect in the way we digest food.
According to Gómez-Pinilla, dietary factors can affect multiple brain processes by regulating neurotransmitter pathways, synaptic transmission, membrane fluidity and signal-transduction pathways.(1)
A nutrient-dense, anti-inflammatory diet rich in colorful plant foods and healthy fats serves as the basis for brain-supportive nutrition. To truly target and enhance these various brain processes, research suggests that there are several nutrients that are of particular value:
By Kalpana Shere-Wolfe, MD
Ayurveda, which literally means knowledge of life, is the ancient medical system of India. Ayurveda states that we are made up of the same substance as that of the universe – we are an integral part of it and therefore should follow the natural laws of the universe. The major elements or mahabhutas of Space, Air, Fire, Water, and Earth which make up our world are also part of us. From these arise the doshas – Vata, Pitta and Kapha which are responsible for maintaining proper function and balance of body and mind. Vata consists of Air and Space and is responsible for bodily functions that involvement movement such as circulation, heartbeat, respiration, elimination. It has the qualities of cold, dry, mobile, subtle, rough, and light. Pitta consists of Fire and Water and is responsible for digestion, metabolism and energy production. It has the qualities of hot, sharp, sour, pungent, liquid, flowing and oily. Kapha consists of Water and Earth and is responsible for physical structure and fluid balance. It has the qualities of oily, heavy, cool, slow, dull, sticky and stable.
By Rebekah Owens
We often hear about what we should or shouldn’t eat, but did you know that HOW you eat, WHEN you eat and HOW MUCH you eat are also very important for good digestion and health? Harvard Medical School published an article on Mindful Eating, which is a great way to use mindfulness meditation as part of your mealtime and snack time activities. Additionally, there are ways to enjoy your food more and eat less using a few simple tricks. These are not just for weight loss; they are beneficial for every eater across the board for best digestion and increased meal enjoyment. Food should be fuel for your body, mind and soul. These tips will help you in your quest for best health.
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Sept 24-30, 2017
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From the University of Maryland, Baltimore Graduate School: