The Autistic Mind and Pets…

Autism _petsDogs can play an important part in social interactions when it comes to children with autism. Children with autism who have a pet in the home have stronger social skills. This according to a study done at the Research Center for Human-Animal Interaction. The presence of an animal in the home made children more comfortable about introducing themselves and responding when something was asked about their pet. This form of assertiveness is extremely difficult for children with autism. The smaller the animal is the stronger the connection seems to be whether it is a small dog, cat, rabbit even a reptile. Since every child with autism is such a special situation, certain animals may elicit a better response then others.

Three Tips on Healthy Weight Loss…

1) Try to Stick to Regular Meal and Snack Times-Your body will condition itself to expect food at a certain time. Grazing all day only encourages the need for a continuous supply of Spices_manyfood.
2) Increase Fiber Intake-recommended daily fiber intake is between 20 and 28 grams a day. By increasing your intake of fiber by just 8 grams will have a tremendous impact on feeling full and satisfied.
3) Use Stronger Spices-It is easier to get your fill of a food that has a strong spice. There is a limit to how much enjoyment you can receive as opposed to a food that is milder or even on the bland side.

Beetroot Juice…

Beetroot JuiceMore then fifty studies have been done on the beneficial effects of beetroot juice. It has been shown to enhance blood vessel health, improve neuro-muscular efficiency and endurance, boost oxygen delivery and help control blood pressure. A new study conducted at Northumbria University in the United Kingdom has concluded that it can reduce recovery time following intense exercise. Results were published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology. After Intense exercise of 100 drop jumps, 30 active males were given beetroot juice or a placebo. The group given the Beetroot juice proved to have less soreness and a faster recovery time.

Dragon’s Blood and Fighting Disease…

Scientists from George Mason University have isolated a substance in a Kimodo DragonKimodo Drogon that may have powerful germ killing abilities. Results were published in the ”Journal of Biofilms and Microbiomes”. Tests were done on mice that had wounds infected with two different strains of bacteria. DRGN-4 as the substance has been named, punched holes in the outer membrane of the bacteria while dissolving the biofilm that glues bacteria together. The Kimodo Dragon was selected because of its strong immune system. They can survive severe wounds, even lost limbs and live in filthy environments without getting infected. The dragons are revered and endangered in their native Indonesia. Researchers had to locate a Kimodo Dragon in a zoo to obtain a blood sample to work with. They can weigh as much as 100 pounds and are extremely dangerous with sharp serrated teeth. No anesthesia was admitted and four tablespoons of blood were finally secured. The sample proved to be a rich source of 40 substances including one with strong antibiotic qualities.

Mashed Sweet Potato, Carrot and Butternut Squash…

Ingredients: 
-1 large onion
-1 large red pepper
-1 large sweet potato
-1 large carrot
-1 package frozen butternut squash
-1 &1/2 tablespoons avocado oil
-1 &1/2 tablespoons coconut oil
-1 &1/2 teaspoons of turmeric

Directions:
-Saute’ chopped onion and chopped red pepper in avocado and coconut oil until light brown
-Steam sweet potato and carrot until able to pierce with knife, add the frozen butternut squash until soft, mash and add turmeric-mix adding the sauted onion and red pepper

Dogs go to College…

Dogs in collegeAccording to a study by The American College Counseling Association conducted in 2013, one in three college students is extremely stressed out and has sought counseling services. College campuses across the United States and around the world are reporting an increase in cases of depression, anxiety and ills brought on by stress. In an attempt to lend a helping paw, officials are arranging “pet therapy” events to help spread some cheer especially during exam times. Most of the dogs that make visits to the college campuses are all volunteers. Research has shown how contact with these furry friends can decrease blood pressure and stress hormones while increasing the hormones that encourage happiness.

A City that is Buzzing…

There is a movement in Los Angeles to encourage beekeeping in small backyard Bee Hivegardens. The city council has passed an amendment to allow residents to pursue keeping their own hives in an attempt to counteract the dramatic die-off of the honeybee populations. A quarter of the bee population has been lost in the past year by U.S. beekeepers. City bees do better in backyard gardens due to the lack of pesticides and a great variety of plant species. Great news is that this movement is starting to spread nationwide.

Tripping your way through Cancer…

Two studies, one done at New York University and the other at John Hopkins University were conducted on the effects of psilocybin (an hallucinogenic derived from mushrooms) Psilocybinand the therapeutic benefits in treating cancer patients. The results were published in The Journal of Psychopharmacology. Cancer-related psychological distress afflicts about 40% of cancer patients who found traditional therapy unsuccessful. Fear of the cancer returning after being told they are either cured or in remission prevents former patients from getting on and enjoying life. Administrating psilocybin is usually accompanied by a playlist of selected music which is believed to enhance the positive effects of the drug. Experiments have shown that relief from anxiety and depression are within the next day in contrast with antidepressants which take several weeks to take effect. This is vital since these patients need help immediately. The theory is that psilocybin interrupts the circuitry of self-absorbed thinking. At present trials are underway in the U.S. and Europe to treat forms of alcoholism, tobacco addiction and PTSD in this manner.

Bugs in our Food…

Where do we get the rich red color that makes up some of the food we eat daily? Few people realize that it is derived from pulverized insects. Extract of the cochineal bug, a Cochineal Bugscaly insect, has been used for centuries as a colorant. It is what gives color to berry flavored yogurt, some juices, imitation crab meat and even lipstick. It was discarded in the 19th century when scientists started using synthetic substitutes. Its resurgence is the result of consumers demanding the use of “natural” ingredients. The FDA has given its seal of approval on the use of this colorant. In places like Ghana, Papua New Guinea, and Bali, termites, dragonflies and beetle larvae are a big part of their diet regiment. In the west, we have more of a psychological problem with the use of bugs in our food.  But the up side is –no known side effects!

Use Real Sugar…

maple tree syrupMany look to synthetic sugars as a way of decreasing the amount of calories they consume. However, short as well as long studies have proven that children as well as adults show significant weight gain by using synthetic sugars. It stems from the fact that only part of the brain is stimulated by synthetic sugars and the reward centers are left with a craving for the energy which would usually accompany using real sugar. The enhanced appetite brought on by sweetness is encouraged by synthetic sugars which only increase sugar cravings and dependence. So go ahead and use a teaspoon of honey or maple sugar and enjoy nature instead of something that has been chemically altered.