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The Benefits of Massage

Massage therapy has been around for thousands of years. In India, Ayurveda, a form of massage was used as part of natural healing since 3000 B.C. Even the ancient Chinese and Egyptians developed some form of massage therapy. Yet, despite its long history, massages are still considered a luxury these days, a pampering routine for the rich. But did you know that massage is not just a drain in the pockets, it has many health benefits too? So much so, that some doctors recommend it as part of a patient's healing process. It's true that an hour of massage can seem expensive in today's economy. Nonetheless, it is still cheaper if you consider how it can help you. Here are some of the benefits of massage:

1. It can relieve muscular spasm and tension

If you have ever been massaged at one point in your life, you've probably heard your therapist comment about the many knots in you body that she or he can feel. Experience tells you that this is true. This is probably one of the benefits of massage that needs no complex explanation. You come out of massage session feeling relaxed. But how does the steady application of pressure on the body put you in such a state of bliss? It's achieved in a number of ways:

- when pressure is applied, a person being massaged becomes aware of the tension in the muscle. Thus, he then consciously releases said tension.

- a thermodynamic effect is created by the application of the pressure, that is, the tight tissues are warmed and softened by the continuous movement on the body.

- when you stimulate the trigger points, the nerves are soothed which releases the contractions in the muscles. This is what causes the spasms. By releasing the contractions, you also relieve the muscular spasms. 

2. It raises the efficiency of the immune system

The lymph system, a vast network of vessels running parallel to your circulatory system, is responsible for moving microorganisms out of your body. It has nodes that are distributed throughout the body whose main job is to capture and expel viruses, organisms and bacteria out. A massage helps in the circulation of the lymph fluid, eliminating the toxins and making the immune system more efficient. At the same time, studies have shown that touch promotes the release of human growth hormone (HGH). A massage therefore, stimulates these hormones to be released in the body and help in its development. 

3. It improves circulation

The right way to massage a person is to apply pressure in the direction of the blood circulation, towards the heart. This is because there is a one-way valve in your veins that keep the blood from making a counter flow as this could potentially be harmful to you. The pressure, assuming its towards the right direction, pushes the blood, thus improving the circulation. It also draws blood into areas where the circulation is not too good, allowing oxygen and nutrients to move around. 

 

4. It promotes the healing of tissues

As a result of number 2 and 3 above, blood enter problematic areas, bringing much needed nutrients into them. The nutrients are the ones that help in the healing. And when toxins are excreted, the tissues heal faster than before. 

 

5. It increases the healthy functioning of the skin

The organ that is benefitted most by massage is the skin. The pressure of the movement promotes the shedding of dead cells. With the dead cells out of the way, the skin is able to absorb vitamins, nutrients and moisture better, leaving the skin more supple, silky and vibrant. In a sense, the skin is like your lungs that needs to breathe in and out too. Massage helps to do just that.  


6. It offers emotional reassurance

In a study conducted on monkeys, researchers found that touch is the most important factor when it comes to emotional comforting. It's probably why children like to carry and hug their favorite blanket or stuff toy because it provides them the tactile stimulation that allays their youthful anxiety. Even babies grow faster when touched often. From the time they come out into the world, they are wired to reach out and touch. Emotional reassurance is probably the number one need of every human being. Massage, because it provides sustained touching, gives the emotional reassurance that every human being craves and needs to grow.  


7. It encourages relaxation

Breathing and concentration exercises have been known to reduce levels of stress. Massage, because of the almost rhythmic movement on the body, induces a similar response. A massage is like a mini-vacation that allows you to relax inside your head. No need to buy tickets to Hawaii. All you need to do is close your eyes. However, this is still up to the person being massaged. Unless you allow it to relax you, no amount of pressure will relax you. 

 

8. It improves appearance

Have you ever looked at yourself after receiving a massage? Your skin becomes rosy because of good circulation, you look healed from whatever ails you, with a skin that can breathe again. Notice the spring in your steps? You feel relaxed, which in turn makes you look more confident and emotionally fulfilled. Do this on a regular basis and the changes become permanent.

Also, you appear smaller because of the tension. With the knots straightened, you release the tension that is holding your body. Because of the massage, you look better mainly because you feel an inner peace. It's really true that those who are at peace radiate an inner beauty.

If you look at all the benefits of massage mentioned above, you can see that a massage is one of the cheapest way to good health. An hour of continued pressure stimulates almost your entire body - from your brain, to the circulatory and lymphatic system, to your skin. If you consider it carefully, it is no longer a luxury, but a necessary part of maintaining good health. In fact, some insurance companies have accepted their therapeutic benefits. So go ahead, enjoy an hour of massage and reap the benefits of massage now. 

 

What it means to eat right and its benefits

    The current trend in the world today as far as diet is concerned raises eyebrows. Dietary discipline is one thing that you should maintain if you want to live a healthy life, be less prone to getting sick and being able to recover from illness. In general, being healthy does not only come from hitting the gym regularly, jogging around the streets or not eating at all. It involves a good diet. A diet that suit ones needs. In general, doctors recommend a good diet for us to keep healthy. An unwritten rule is meals should not be skipped if we intend to eat healthy and benefit from it. If possible have all the three essential meals in a day.    

    

     Eating right involves maintaining a balanced diet. Eating lean meat, proper hydration, eating low fat foods and carbohydrates to ensure constant supply of calories is what doctors and the medical practitioners’ term as eating right. In our daily diet, it is recommended that the bulk of the meal should be carbohydrates, approximately 1/3 of the meal should comprise carbohydrates, another 1/3 of the meal should be made up of fruits and vegetable while the remaining 1/3 should be shared among milk, juices and proteins. Salt and sugar should also be taken moderately. Not too little because of their nutritional values and not too much because of the diseases they can cause. In special cases of people suffering from diabetes and salt related infections, prescriptions on the amount of salt and sugar is advised by the doctors.   

    

      Now that you know what constitutes a healthy diet, this process should be interesting. It is up to you to become creative with your diet. Try out new recipes and different combinations of meals. Nutritionists recommend that what you took today for breakfast should not be the exactly the same thing that you will take tomorrow. Spice it up; replace one or more foods in your everyday diet. 

    

     In addition to this, it is not recommended that you completely do away with high calorie food and high fat food. On the flip side, you should just reduce the quantity and the frequency. It is a gradual process and as much as you do not expect immediate results, the same way you should not completely change your eating habit. You just need to regulate it.

Well, it takes a lot of discipline and devotion to always maintain a balanced diet in every meal that you take. However, a positive attitude is essential in this gradual process of maintaining a balanced diet. Nevertheless, eating healthy has its benefits. 

Energy

    

     This is the immediate feedback your body gives when you start eating right. Eating a healthy breakfast that is rich in carbohydrates and fruits ensures that your body is provided with energy throughout the day. The main reason why carbohydrates provide energy is they take a relatively short time to be digested and absorbed in the body. 


     However, not all cabs are good for the body. Processed carbohydrates like candy and sweetened bread lead to blood sugar fluctuations in the body. Vegetables, fruits and whole grains are examples of unrefined carbohydrates that are good to maintain a constant blood sugar level. 

Increases blood flow and reduces heart diseases


     A diet that is low in fat is good in preventing clogging of veins in the body and preventing chronic heart diseases like heart attacks. An excess of this fat accumulates in the body and is not digested. It ends up blocking the blood vessels if it is not burned. Besides fat, cholesterol and sodium are saturated and Trans fats that are not needed in the body in large quantities. They are normally found in red meat, margarine and fried food, deep fried food. 


     To maintain a steady blood flow and ensure that you are free perennial heart infections, you should minimize the intake of fat and processed food products that have high percentage cholesterol. This applies mostly to people that do not exercise regularly. You should stick to a healthy meal of fruits and lean meat, especially white meat like freshwater fish, poultry products like eggs and chicken and some specific portions of red meat like the ribs to be on the safe side. 


Proper brain functioning

     With increased blood flow in the body, it means that enough blood is circulated within the body all the way to the brain. Proper blood flow to the brain reduces the risk of getting Alzheimer’s disease. Food groups that are rich in vitamin D increase the blood flow and opening up of the blood vessels. All sorts of berries and nuts are a great source of vitamin E. However, for proper blood flow to the brain and protecting brain cells you should avoid grilled, steamed and favored baked foods. 

Strengthening bones and teeth 


     A good diet involves some vegetable and juices and dairy products like milk regularly. They are very important when it comes to strengthening the bones. Low fat dairy products like milk and yoghurt contain calcium that helps in the process. Besides calcium that is also found in dark green vegetable products like broccoli and soy products, these food groups also provide vitamin D. Vitamin D is important because it helps the body to absorb calcium faster and digest it. Nutritionists recommend a normal human being to consume close to 1 gram of calcium daily to make the bones and teeth stronger. 

Controlling weight


     The composition of a proper diet mentioned above ensures that at no one point you will take in more calories in the form of carbohydrates than what you actually burn in a day. A balanced diet is ideal because it keeps you full for a longer time compared to an unbalanced diet that is rich in carbohydrates like fast food meals. It reduces how frequent you will be hungry and crave for more food. 

A balanced diet for every meal has proteins. Protein, lean protein takes a longer time to be digested in the body, approximately six to eight hours. It keeps you full for longer and reduces your food intake without necessarily starving. In no time you will find yourself losing excess calories and a few pounds in the long run. 

Reiki; Qigong; and their benefits

Reiki is the healing process used to cure all types of ailments by using life force energy. The treatment has miraculous effects and is thus gaining a lot of popularity. Mikao Usui is the Japanese man who developed this healing method. The word Reiki is made from two Japanese words, 'Rei' and 'Ki'. The word Reiki literally means God's wisdom or the higher power and life force energy. The treatment can be easily learnt by anyone and is not restricted to people who follow a set of beliefs. The healing process does have a spiritual meaning to it but the life force energy is invariably accessible to anyone.

Concept Of This Therapy

The life force energy that flows within our body keeps us alive and energetic. It flows through chakras, nadis and different body organs. The energy also flows around our body as the aura. We fall ill when negative energy disrupts the uninterrupted flow of energy through the body. This prevents the cosmic energy from flowing smoothly and leads to health problems. The therapy uses cosmic energy to correct these disruptions and regain the smooth flow of energy through the body. It charges these parts with positive energy and regains the normal functioning of the body. Life force energy again starts flowing in a natural and healthy way.

Anyone Can Learn Reiki

The best part of Reiki is that anyone can learn this healing process. You do not require any specific qualification or degree to learn the therapy. The healing process can be learnt by anyone in the age group 8- 80 years and who has basic intelligence. You do not require to believe in any particular belief to learn Reiki as it is not restricted to any religion. It is a method that helps you realize the inner calm through transfer of positive energy.The method can be easily learnt by anyone and you do not need to practice for years to learn it.

Ailments Cured By This Method

The treatment heals you completely and cleanses your body, mind and soul with the help of cosmic energy. The life force energy treats the root cause of any ailment and helps to get rid of the basic cause of the problem.

Here is a list of ailments for which you can rely on this therapy:

-It helps you deal with stress and stress related health issues.
-It helps you get a peaceful sleep and cure all sleep disorders.
-It helps you handle fatigue and physical stress.
-It helps to alleviate pain and ill health.

Benefits of the Reiki Treatment Method

The myriad benefits of this method is what makes it so popular. People around the world rely on the life force energy to cure their ailments and lead better lives. Here are a few benefits of using the cosmic energy to treat your ailments:

-All medicines and drugs have adverse effects on the body and hampers your health in some way. Reiki has no side effects and this is the greatest benefit of this method.

-It is one of the rare methods that encourage self-healing which means you can cure your own ailments.
-You can learn the process at any stage in life.
-You can rely on this method for treating any disease or ailment.
-It also helps you feel stress-free and emotionally balanced.
-Distant healing is also possible with this therapy.

Qigong Chinese Healing Method

Qigong is an ancient Chinese healing method practiced by Martial Art athletes. It is also alternately referred to as 'chi kung' or 'chi gung'. The word is basically made up of two Chinese words. Chi means the life energy or the life force while gung or kung means the art of cultivation. Together the word means cultivation of life force energy. This is a traditional Chinese healing system known to have splendid results.

Healing Process

The process basically intends to cultivate life force energy through breathing techniques, mental focus and diverse postures. The procedure and technique varies based on the purpose of Qigong. The three most common variations are spiritual, medical and martial.

Martial method is practiced by martial art athletes to stay fit and healthy. Regular practicing ensures that they stay fit as a fiddle.

Medical method is more subtle and is used for healing ailments and medical problems.

The spiritual technique helps you pass on your life force energy to help someone else.

Benefits of The Qikong Healing System

There are several benefits offered by the process which makes many people opt for it. Here are some of the major benefits of practicing this method:

-The method is suggested by medical practitioners to patients as they are known to have splendid results.
-The method does not involve consuming medicines or drugs. This makes the method safe and reliable.
-The method also teaches you self healing and curing your own illnesses.
-There is no limitation on age, gender or ethnic backgrounds to learn the method. Anyone can learn it easily.
-It helps you revitalize and rejuvenate your body and mind.
-It is a great way to get rid of stress and sleep disorders.
-It is known to improve your circulatory, lymphatic, respiratory, digestive and cardiovascular health.
-It helps you calm your mind and stay peaceful.

Qigong and Reiki are gaining popularity

Qigong and Reiki are two treatment methods that rely on the life force to cure ailments. These methods are gaining popularity due to the myriad benefits offered by each. Both these Asian treatment procedures rely on cultivation of life force energy through different methods. The methods are ancient wisdom passed on to our generation. Both these procedures help us connect to the inner spiritual inner self. It helps us regain our inner peace and vitality.

The Qigong exercise procedures are simple and devised in a manner that everyone can practice it. People improve their health and vigor by regularly practicing these exercises. Reiki helps to develop positive energy within you and helps you get rid of all negativeness. These are ideal methods and more reliable than any form of medication if you wish to cure your illnesses. Learn these methods and stay healthy. It also gives you the power to cure others and connect with your spiritual self.

Why stretching is important

You are about to learn something very important when it comes to exercise. Stretching is important-so important that it can be argued it is actually more crucial to your well being and becoming fit than exercising itself. The importance of stretching along with exercise is very misunderstood and for that reason too often overlooked. Here you will learn why stretching is so important. You will also learn how to stretch in the right way so you get maximum benefit and reduce the possibility of injury.


     First, it should be made clear that stretching should be done before exercise and after exercise. It should also be done before and after any strenuous training event or actual competitive event.

When a person exercises the muscles become stressed and tight. This causes the muscles to shorten. It is all very natural. Because of this, to prepare your muscles for what is about to happen to them you need to warm muscles up and elongate them in advance. This is the reason why its necessary to stretch before exercise or an athletic event.

After the event, because the muscles are now in a shortened state you need to help them get back to their normal size. That is why we stretch after the event.

If you neglect to stretch you run the risk of ripping, straining, pulling or tearing muscles. It can also lead to cramping of muscles, it can hasten muscle fatigue and can have an overall negative effect on how your body will perform and recover after the event.

There are so many reasons why stretching is important. Some of which includes

They Improves Muscle Development: They give full range of movements of movements and building long muscles rather than becoming short and stunted.

It raises range of motion: stretching usually increases the range of movement for someone doing weight lifting. It also increasing body's flexibility in general making one feel physically fit and flexible

Reduces Injury: It reduce chances of damage the muscles through gradually stretch the muscle. Stretching can reduced the risk of injury to your muscles, increase your range of motion, decrease stiffness in your muscles after exercise, and improve your muscle tone

Blood flow; Stretching properly will increase blood flow in your body and help get important nutrients and oxygen to your muscles quick-this will help them recover faster and you will feel better sooner.

Improve Posture: They can also help to improve carriage and especially extending the back. It might likewise be helpful for lightening ache and this is the reason it is generally utilized as a piece of yoga and Pilates.

Joint development; Stretching is good for your joints development. It can also help your general well being, mood and relieve stress.

How to Stretch the Right Way

For stretching to deliver all its possible benefits it must be done in the right way. The most important thing is that your body needs to be warmed up before stretching. You never want to stretch your muscles when they are cold. 

It’s easy to warm the body up before stretching. For about 3-5 minutes jog lightly in place or back and forth over a short distance. You can also take a brisk walk, rotate and move your arms to get added benefit. Cycling or even walking up and down stairs will work-anything to get your heart pumping a bit and your body and muscles a little warmed up.

As you begin your stretches focus on only one muscle group at a time. Do not stretch to the point where there is pain-that will cause damage. Also, do not bounce. Hold the stretch, not for a count but you get a feeling of the tension in the muscle let up and loosen. Repeat up to three times with each muscle group.

After you finish with your event or exercise be sure to stretch again within at least ten minutes of finishing. You don't want your body to cool down too much. Stretching after will be very helpful in bringing your tightened muscles back to their normal size and you will feel better faster. 

In conclusion stretching is essential parts of a healthy lifestyle hence remember to take the necessary steps to ensure that you get the most out of your stretching and maintain your health and wellbeing.

WHY WATER IS IMPORTANT FOR LIFE 

Without water, there would be no life. Water is the main reason why human beings cannot go ahead and inhabit other planets or even the moon. The human brain itself consists of 75 percent water. We can go without food for a number of weeks, without water though we can last just for 5 to 7 days.  


About 60% of the body of the human male consists of water. The human female body is made up of 50% of water. Water carries out all the toxins that are produced in the body as a byproduct of the many processes that go on. Our blood is able to function because of the water in it. It transports oxygen breathed in from the air to all the cells of the body. In addition to that it transports the carbon dioxide from the body to be eliminated through the lungs.  



Water is present in every organ of our body. The most important are the eyes. It washes away any dirt settling into them in order to keep our vision clear. It moistens our mouth and enables us to digest food. It is present in the acids in our stomach which break up the food into soluble digestible material.  


Our bodies need to remain at a pH of 7.4 for optimum health or even just life itself. Water is the reactant maintaining this pH for us.  

Electrolytes in our body need to be in a particular concentration. All information is transmitted through our organs through certain nerve impulses. Water maintains the amount of this concentration at the right percentage.  


Water ensures that our bodies cool down when we are hot especially when exercising or when down with fever. This is achieved through sweat. Sweat is also a way for the toxins in our body to be eliminated safely.  

Water is present in a great abundance on this planet. Water is a universal solvent. Salt dissolves in water easily making a solution which has free ions present in it. These ions stop particles of the polar molecules from clumping to each other and not staying in the solution itself.  


Water being a liquid at certain comfortable temperatures makes it a suitable environment for animal species to live in. Metabolic reactions can occur comfortably in water making it a key to the sustaining of life forms.  


Water molecules have a property known as dipolar. This refers to the adhesive ability of water molecules. This ability causes the water to stick to other substances which are polar in nature. This is important to very tall life forms such as trees. Water can travel up the very narrow xylem in their stems and thus columns of continuous water can be pulled to reach high up into the trees where it would be difficult to reach otherwise. 

 

The transparency of water is very important as it enables our eyes to have sight. Equally importantly it transmits sunlight through it allowing the aquatic plants to survive through the process of photosynthesis.  


The thermal properties and the high specific heat capacity makes it resist temperature changes easily. This is important for the survival of organisms. A lot of amount of high energy is required to either be gained or lost in order for water to change its form to either evaporate or to freeze.  

Water helps keep all the functions of our body working at the optimal level. The hearts of all living organisms function because of water. This vital organ’s pumps the blood all over the body delivering all nutrients essential to life. It also helps purify the blood of all toxins. In human beings, increasing water consumption could help prevent heart attacks.  


Water provides oxygen to the brain of living organisms which keeps them alert and attentive. It is because of water that organisms are able to think and make the decisions that ensure their survival.  


Drinking enough water is an important part of helping you loose weight too. It has the ability to increase the metabolic rate of the body. When this happens then the body’s ability to burn fat is increased. This helps in the process of loosing weight more easily. Increasing drinking water during weight loss will also enable the body to get rid of all the toxins produced during exercise leading to a healthy body. Water will also ensure that you are able to carry on exercising without tiring out. It is important to have water before, during and also after exercise.