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It’s nearly impossible to avoid all sources of stress in your life. While you can’t change the world around you, you can try to change your reactions. Learning the relaxation response — which is the opposite of the stress response — can help create a sense of peace and balance. The relaxation response is a physiologic shift that puts the brakes on stress before it becomes overwhelming. You can elicit this response by practicing techniques such as deep breathing, progressive relaxation, visualization, and meditation.
Harvard researchers have uncovered strong links between women's
job stress and cardiovascular disease. Findings from the Women's
Health Study (WHS) — a landmark inquiry into disease prevention
involving more than 17,000 female health professionals — show
that women whose work is highly stressful have a 40% increased
risk of heart disease (including heart attacks and the need for
coronary artery surgery), compared with their less stressed
Polymyalgia rheumatica is an inflammatory disorder of the joints
and connective tissues. It can severely limit your daily
activities and take a heavy toll on your sleep and well-being.
PMR can come on gradually over days or weeks or may appear
suddenly. You may feel fine one day and terrible the next.
Temporal arteritis is an inflammation of large blood vessels,
such as in the head. A severe, constant headache is often one of
the first signs.
These conditions often occur together, though the reasons for
this are unknown. Fortunately, both of these disorders are highly
By age 60, about 40% of people have diverticular disease, a
condition characterized by protruding pouches on the colon. It's
thought that a low-fiber diet, obesity, and lack of exercise
contribute to the disease. Of those with diverticulosis,
30% will develop more serious forms of the disease, including
diverticulitis (infected and inflamed diverticula) and
diverticular bleeding (bleeding from a blood vessel near a
diverticulum). It's unclear why some people develop these
problems and others do not. Most diverticulitis can be treated
with medications and rest, but 25% of cases lead to complications
requiring surgery, including perforation of the colon,
peritonitis (infection of the abdominal cavity), bowel
obstruction, abscess, and fistula (an abnormal connection between
the colon and nearby tissue).
Wintertime poses a special problem because humidity is low both
outdoors and indoors, and the water content of the epidermis (the
outermost layer of skin) tends to reflect the level of humidity
around it. Fortunately, there are many simple and inexpensive
things you can do to relieve winter dry skin, also known as
winter itch or winter xerosis.
Studies suggest that we take much more vitamin D than we do now —
especially those of us living in northern climes who may get too
little sunlight to produce adequate amounts in the skin. Many
scientists have advocated vitamin D doses much higher than the
present recommended dose to prevent a host of chronic conditions.
But the report of an expert panel convened by the Institute of
Medicine (IOM) concluded that high doses of vitamin D aren't
necessary and might even be harmful. Many people — including many
clinicians and researchers — were taken by surprise.
What do you know about taking extra folic acid to boost the immune system?
In your article about blepharitis, you didn't say anything about
the best way to remove eye makeup. Are oil-based products bad for