Whole Life Magazine

December 2012/January 2013

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Page 17 of 43

your Rock Body By Elizabeth Barker Bad Air = Brain Fog? Breathing in dirty air day after day could harm your brain health as you get older, according to a recent study from the University of Southern California. Looking at data on nearly 15,000 older adults, researchers found that those with high levels of exposure to ine air particulate matter (a type of road-dust-generated pollution common in Los Angeles) scored lower on tests designed to gauge memory and thinking skills. Once inhaled, ine air particulate matter could work its way into the brain and set off an inlammatory response that might weaken cognitive function, the study's authors note. To curb your own exposure to such particles, try hitting the aircirculating button each time you drive, and purifying your indoor air with the help of HEPA iltration. Study: Mindful Eating Spurs Weight Loss When it comes to slimming down, eating mindfully might be just as effective as sticking to a standard weight-loss program. That's the inding of a new study from the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, which compared a mindful-eating program with nutrition-based guidelines in its potential to promote weight loss among adults with type 2 diabetes. For eight weeks, 27 study members took part in a program focused on tuning into their hunger levels before eating, bringing more awareness and attention to their meals, and breaking the habit of continuing to eat even after fullness sets in. Meanwhile, the study's remaining 25 participants were assigned to a program that involved choosing healthy fats and carbohydrates, controlling their portion sizes and getting regular exercise. By the end of the three-month study, members of both groups had dropped about the same amount of weight (an average of 3 ½ pounds to six pounds) and signiicantly lowered their blood sugar levels. While getting smart about nutrition is essential to weight loss, notes lead study author Carla Miller, mindful eating can go a long way in dealing with everyday factors that tend to sabotage diets. "We have so many environmental cues to eat in America that we've tuned out our normal physiological signals to eat," Miller explains. "Being mindful means stopping long enough to become aware of these physiological cues." Hypnosis for Hot Flashes If you're dealing with menopause-induced hot lashes, hypnosis may help. In a recent study from Baylor University's Mind-Body Medicine Research Laboratory, ive weeks of clinical hypnotherapy reduced hot lashes by up to 80 percent, enhanced overall quality of life, and helped alleviate anxiety and depression. In addition to attending weekly sessions with trained hypnotherapists, the study's 187 participants practiced self-hypnosis with audio recordings and visualization exercises based on calming, cooling images like snowy paths and cold mountain creeks. 18 WL_02.indd 18 Black Tea for Diabetes Defense While rates of type 2 diabetes are continuing to climb across the globe, some populations are showing remarkably low rates of the potentially life-threatening disease. In a new report from the online journal BMJ Open, researchers revealed that countries with a high intake of black tea had a reduced prevalence of type 2 diabetes, a condition estimated to affect 438 million people around the world by the year 2030. For the report, researchers sized up data on disease rates and black tea consumption from 50 countries across every continent. Although they found no link between black tea and conditions like cancer and cardiovascular disease, they did determine that countries heavily populated with black tea drinkers (such as Ireland, the United Kingdom and Turkey) had fewer people with diabetes compared to countries whose inhabitants tend to snub black tea (such as South Korea, Brazil, China, Morocco and Mexico). In past research, antioxidants in black tea have been found to ight diabetes by messing with certain enzymes involved in spiking your blood sugar levels after you eat. To load up on those antioxidants without overdoing it on caffeine, opt for the decaf variety or stick to four cups or fewer per day. wholelifetimesmagazine.com 11/27/12 2:59 PM

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