CNM pioneers online natural health diploma courses

Responding to the current worldwide health challenges, the College of Naturopathic Medicine is now offering all of its internationally recognised diploma and short courses online.

CNM graduates and students know:

  • that a healthy and robust body can resist infections better and return to health faster
  • that a strong immune system is important
  • how to boost the immune system naturally

Read the full story here...

Natural cosmetic ingredients gaining popularity

The coronavirus pandemic is raising demand for natural ingredients from the personal care industry, according to research company Ecovia Intelligence. Many natural and organic food retailers are reporting a sales surge during the current crisis as consumers are turning to natural and health products to improve their overall health and wellness, as well as disease prevention.

Natural ingredients with antibacterial and antiviral qualities are the most sought after. For example, Australian companies are reporting a surge in demand for lemon myrtle, which is used in hand sanitizers and cleaning products. Tea tree oil, well-known for its antibacterial and antiviral properties, is also experiencing a coronavirus boost. It is used in a wide range of personal care and home care products. Aloe vera is also experiencing high demand. The use of aloe vera has extended from companies to consumers making hand sanitizers at home. Other natural ingredients in high demand include eucalyptus oil, propolis and oregano.

Ecovia reports that the popularity of cannabidiol (CBD) is also continuing during the coronavirus crisis. CBD is featured in many new product launches, including hand sanitizers, creams, lotions and balms. And now consumers are buying CBD products to help give them relieve from anxiety, insomnia and pain.

The miracle of nature

According to new research conducted by Liz Earle Beauty Co., 84 per cent of us say that spending time outdoors helps relieve everyday stress and worries, both of which are at a nationwide high in the current climate. 

Being unable to spend time outdoors is clearly having a significant effect on our emotions with almost half (43 per cent) saying that it makes them feel stressed or anxious, 35 per cent saying they feel lethargic when they don’t get to spend much time outside in nature, and 29 per cent saying they feel irritable.

James Wong, Liz Earle Beauty Co. Ethnobotanist says: “Gardening can be a powerful and therapeutic tool for a sense of escapism and wellbeing. There is a growing body of research suggesting that being around plants can reduce stress and anxiety. It can provide not only a welcome distraction from the headlines, but much-needed signs of growth, positivity and a chance to see the miracle of nature at work. There are many other ways that you can experience the benefits of nature to boost your wellbeing by creating a green view from our windows, filling your home with plant-based scents and an indoor edible garden where you can grow your own fruit and veg.”

High-fat meals can hamper concentration

Eating just one meal high in saturated fat can hamper our ability to concentrate, a new study has found. Researchers from Ohio State University analysed how a group of 51 women performed on a test of their attention after they consumed either a meal high in saturated fat or the same meal made with sunflower oil, which is high in unsaturated fat. Their performance on the test was worse after eating the meal high in saturated fat compared to the meal containing the unsaturated fat.

Janice Kiecolt-Glaser, professor of psychiatry and psychology and director of the Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research at Ohio State noted that the results are particularly pertinent at the moment. She highlighted the fact that many people who are stressed by the Covid-19 pandemic are turning to fatty foods for comfort.

“What we know is that when people are more anxious, a good subset of us will find high-saturated-fat food more enticing than broccoli,” said Professor Kiecolt-Glaser. “We know from other research that depression and anxiety can interfere with concentration and attention as well. When we add that on top of the high-fat meal, we could expect the real-world effects to be even larger.”

The study was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Yoga could help to ease migraines

A regular yoga practice could be a useful add-on therapy in the treatment of migraine, a new study has revealed. The research was carried out at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in New Delhi, India, and was published in the online issue of Neurology.

The study involved a group of 114 patients aged between 18 and 50 who had been diagnosed with episodic migraine. The participants were randomly assigned into two groups: those who only took medication and those who took medication as well as following a regular yoga practice. After three months, the findings showed that compared to medical therapy, the yoga group demonstrated a significant reduction in headache frequency, intensity and the amount of medication they needed to take.

The study concluded that: “Yoga as an add-on therapy in migraine is superior to medical therapy alone. It may be useful to integrate a cost-effective and safe intervention like yoga into the management of migraine.”

Sugary drinks linked to cardiovascular disease risk

A new study has revealed that women who consume one or more sugary drinks on a daily basis could increase their risk of cardiovascular disease by 20 per cent, compared to women who rarely or never drink them.

The daily consumption of such drinks was also linked with a 26 per cent higher likelihood of needing a procedure such as angioplasty, to open clogged arteries, plus a 21 per cent higher chance of experiencing a stroke.

The research was carried out as part of the California Teacher’s Study which began in 1995 and is ongoing. This involved more than 106,000 women with an average age of 52 who had not been diagnosed with heart disease, stroke or diabetes when they enrolled in the study. The participants recorded what types of drinks they consumed as well as the quantities via a questionnaire. The study defined sugary drinks as being caloric soft drinks, sweetened bottled waters or teas and sugar-added fruit drinks, but not 100 per cent fruit juices.

“Although the study is observational and does not prove cause and effect, we hypothesise that sugar may increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases in several ways,” said senior study author Cheryl Anderson, professor and interim chair of family and public health at the University of California San Diego. “It raises glucose levels and insulin concentrations in the blood, which may increase appetite and lead to obesity, a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease.” The research was published in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

Low flavonoids link to Alzheimer’s risk

A US study has found that older adults who consumed small amounts of flavonoid-rich foods were two to four times more likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease and related forms of dementia over 20 years compared with people whose intake was higher. The research was carried out at Tufts University, Massachusetts. The study involved 2,800 people aged 50 and older who were asked to complete dietary questionnaires approximately every four years.

Flavonoid-rich foods include berries, apples and tea. Flavonoids are associated with various health benefits, including reduced inflammation.

The researchers analysed six types of flavonoids and compared long-term intake levels with the number of diagnoses of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD) later in life. The research team uncovered the following findings:

  • Low intake of flavonols (apples, pears and tea) was associated with twice the risk of developing ADRD.
  • Low intake of anthocyanins (blueberries, strawberries, and red wine) was associated with a four-fold risk of developing ADRD.
  • Low intake of flavonoid polymers (apples, pears, and tea) was associated with twice the risk of developing ADRD. The results were similar for AD.

Paul Jacques, senior author on the study, commented: “The risk of dementia really starts to increase over age 70, and the take home message is, when you are approaching 50 or just beyond, you should start thinking about a healthier diet if you haven’t already.”

The findings were published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

New Covid-19 study aims to identify most at-risk patients

A new study by researchers at the University of Bristol will link hospital and GP practice data to identify patients who are most at risk of harm from coronavirus.

The study will link routine health data recorded in GP surgeries to the records of the most severely ill patients admitted to hospital intensive care units. The linked data will then be analysed to find out which existing health problems, drug treatments, or other factors, such as smoking or pregnancy, are most strongly associated with people being admitted to intensive care or dying due to the virus. Knowing more about who is most at risk of harm will enable health care professionals to advise patients on how to minimise their exposure to the virus, make decisions about when to treat people – earlier for those most at risk – and prioritise treatments for those who are most likely to benefit.

Dr Rupert Payne, Consultant Senior Lecturer in Primary Care at the Centre for Academic Primary Care and lead researcher on the project, said: “We hope our research will inform the ongoing response to Covid-19, as well as serving as an invaluable resource for future research looking at the wider impact of the pandemic on primary care health services.”

Free copies of Your Healthy Living magazine for NHS Hospitals

Your Healthy Living magazine has teamed up with Gold Key Media and Project Wingman to supply NHS Hospitals – including St Thomas's and the Woolwich Hospital, plus many other sites in London – with copies of Your Healthy Living.

Gold Key Media has re-charge hubs in many hospitals and has now also teamed up with Project Wingman, an initiative set up by furloughed aircrew. The project is creating first class lounges in hospitals to help look after NHS workers, providing food, drinks and various free publications. In some they even have beauty products and care packages to give away.

These re-charge areas allow NHS staff some small moments of relaxation and escapism, before they head back to the wards. The scheme is growing daily – London is just the start – and there will soon be similar lounges/areas in many hospitals throughout the UK. We will continue to provide Gold Key Media with as many copies of Your Healthy Living magazine as we possibly can.

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