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The website of Author/Writer and Psychic Medium Astrid Brown. Making the most of 'YOU' i.e. how to achieve well-being and beauty from within ourselves. A truly holistic blog providing information on all aspects of psychic mediumship, spiritualism, philosophy, holistic therapies, nutrition, health, stress, mental health and beauty with a little bit of Wicca for good measure. Feeling and looking good is as much a part of how we feel inside as the outside.

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ALL WRITTEN/PHOTOGRAPHIC MATERIAL ON MY PAGES IS SUBJECT TO COPYRIGHT. YOU MAY NOT REPRODUCE, COPY, DISSEMINATE PART OR WHOLE WITHOUT PERMISSION OF THE AUTHOR

I am a great believer in Karma, but just what is it? Karma comes from the Sanskrit and ancient Indian Language with the underlying principal that every deed in our lives will affect our future life. For example, if we treat others badly during our lifetime we will have negative experiences later on in that lifetime or in future lifetimes. Likewise, if we treat others well we will be rewarded by positive experiences.

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THE DANGERS OF INEXPERIENCED PSYCHICS/MEDIUMS

Today I am blogging about inexperienced Psychics/Mediums. There are many psychics/mediums around who give the profession a bad name, t...

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Tuesday, 31 July 2012

WEIGHT LOSS FRAGRANCE PATCHOULI ESSENTIAL OIL


Now this is not a new discovery, this is something us Aromatherapists have been well aware of for years scroll down to the Aromatherapy Profile 'Patchouli essential oil' below. Patchouli is well known for reducing appetite and I wouldn't be surprised if this wasn't the active ingredient. As for massaging it into areas to sculpt total nonsense as if this was possible, which it is not, then it would have to be licensed as a medication, total sales hype folks. Aromatherapy acts on the Limbic system of which the Hypothalamus is at the centre, the area of our brains that deals with our moods and emotions and maintains homeostasis within the body

Article from the Daily Mail below, followed by my profile on Patchouli essential oil



The world's first 'weight loss fragrance' revealed... and it already has a waiting list of over 6,000!
Designed to ‘slim with pleasure’, Prends-moi is based on extensive aromatherapeutic and ‘neurocosmetic’ research
75% felt the perfume limited the need to snack
73% felt a feeling of pleasure
From fad diets to savvy gadgets, there are hundred of products claiming to aid the all-important weight loss.
And now, the latest slimming aid comes in the form of a perfume bottle.
Prends–moi is the world’s first slimming fragrance from Velds that has been developed at the French perfume house Robertet.

The latest revolution in slimming comes in a small perfume bottle and costs £29.99
Makers claim the fragrance is designed to ‘slim with pleasure’ and is based on 'aromatherapeutic' and ‘neurocosmetic’ research.
The perfume contains ingredients which release B-endorphins present in the skin and a ‘pleasure message’ is transmitted through the brain triggering a sensation of well being and an increase in contentment reducing the need to overeat.


73% of testers felt a feeling of pleasure when applying the perfume
A ‘Slimming Complex’ formulated with caffeine, carnitine and spirulina extract activates the two key enzymes directly involved in lipolysis (fat degradation).
A trial study by BIO-EC of women aged between 18 and 70 years of age, who were not on a diet, found that 75% felt the perfume limited the need to snack and 73% felt a feeling of pleasure.
Generously spritz in the morning, as you would do with any perfume, and throughout the day when the need for snacking arises.
Further results can be achieved by very lightly massaging into targeted areas, morning and night to help sculpt and slim the contours of the body.
As for the smell, there are top notes, with lively accents of bergamot, mandarin and grapefruit.
With a low alcohol content, Prends-moi is perfect for those who love summer all year long.
But unfortunately you will have to join a fast-forming queue of over 6,000 eager customers who are desperate to get their hands on the bottles.


THE TRIAL RESULTS

A trial study by BIO-EC (Centre of Biological Research and Cutaneous Experimentation) of women aged between 18 and 70 years who were not either on a diet or medical or dermatological treatment during the whole duration of the study revealed the following results after 28 days of regular use:
• 82% felt a feeling of comfort after application
• 75% thought it had a pleasant fragrance and they would wear it every day
• 73% felt a feeling of pleasure
• 75% felt it limited the need to snack
• 70% felt a feeling of well being
• 70% felt it acting on their eating behaviour
Prends Moi 100ml is £29.99 and available at The Fragrance Shop


AROMATHERAPY ESSENTIAL OIL PATCHOULI

Patchouli essential oil's value in skincare is incalculable. It is also great for fighting depression and anxiety. It has great diuretic properties and also helps break down cellulite, while stimulating the regeneration of skin cells, speeding up healing and preventing ugly scars forming when wounds heal. Patchouli oil has a rich musky-sweet, strong spicy and herbaceous smell. It is light yellow to dark brown in color and is a thick oil. It is a perennial, bushy plant that grows up to 1meter (3 feet) high, with a sturdy, hairy stem and large, fragrant, furry leaves, about four inches long and five inches across. It has whitish flowers tinged with purple. The plant is native to Malaysia and India, where it is known as 'puchaput'. The word is derived from Hindustan word 'patch' meaning 'green' and 'ilai' meaning 'leaf.' It was placed between Indian cashmere shawls en route to Victorian England, to protect the merchandise from moths, and without this signature smell of dried patchouli leaves the shawls could not be sold in England. In the East, it is used in potpourris and sachets and place between linen, to keep bedbugs away, and it is the smell of patchouli oil, mixed with that of camphor, that gives Indian ink its characteristic smell.  Patchouli oil is extracted from the young leaves which are dried and fermented prior to steam distillation and yields 2 - 3 %. This oil improves with age to have a fuller, more well rounded odor.

Chemical composition
The chemical components of patchouli oil are b-patchoulene, a-guaiene, caryophyllene, a-patchoulene, seychellene, a-bulnesene, norpatchoulenol, patchouli alcohol and pogostol.

Precautions
It is non-toxic, non-irritant and non-sensitizing, but the smell of patchouli oil may be a little persistent for some people and large doses may cause loss of appetite in some individuals (thus can help curb appetite in aiding weight control). As usual do not use if suffering from epilepsy or in pregnancy and always in dilution.

Therapeutic properties
The therapeutic properties of patchouli oil are antidepressant, antiphlogistic, antiseptic, aphrodisiac, astringent, cicatrisant, cytophylactic, deodorant, diuretic, febrifuge, fungicide, insecticide, sedative and tonic.

Patchouli oil has a grounding and balancing effect on the emotions and banishes lethargy, while sharpening the wits, fighting depression and anxiety. It is also said to create an amorous atmosphere.
It is effective for fungal and bacterial infection and is of great help for insect bites. It could also be used as an insect repellant and is also used as a support for dealing with any substance addiction.
With its excellent diuretic properties, it is effective in fighting water retention and to break up cellulite, easing constipation and helping to reduce overweight. Furthermore, it has a great deodorizing action, and helps when feeling hot and bothered, while cooling down inflammations and assisting with wound healing. On the skin, this oil is one of the most active and is a superb tissue regenerator, which helps to stimulate the growth of new skin cells. In wound healing, it not only promotes faster healing, but also helps to prevent ugly scarring when the wound heals. Patchouli oil is very effective in sorting out rough, cracked and overly dehydrated skin and is used to treat acne, acne, eczema, sores, ulcers, any fungal infections, as well as scalp disorders. Patchouli oil has a beneficial effect on the skin, helps for infections and insect bites, water retention and can help with stress related problems and addictions. 
  
Burners and vaporizers
In vapor therapy, patchouli oil can be used to fight anxiety and depression, while at the same time creating a very amorous atmosphere and acting as an insect repellent.

Blended massage oil or in the bath 
As a blended massage oil or diluted in the bath, patchouli oil can help to fight depression, skin and scalp complaints, fungal infections, fluid retention, help to break down cellulite and also assists with constipation, overweight and dermatitis.

Lotions and creams 
In a lotion or cream, patchouli oil can be used for general skin care, as it has superb tissue regenerating properties, to help rejuvenate the skin and stimulate the formation of new skin cells, while fighting infections. It also speeds up healing, while preventing the wound forming ugly scars and is effective for acne, eczema, weeping sores, ulcers, slow healing wounds, scalp disorders, as well as other fungal infections, such as athlete's foot.



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FIZZY DRINKS LEADING BIOLOGIST SAYS THEY ARE EVIL, READ THE REPORT


Having seen the evidence, I don't touch fizzy drinks any more. Frankly they're evil, says leading biologist

  • Consumption of soft drinks has more than doubled since 1985 - from ten gallons per person a year to more than 25 gallons
  • Sugary drinks lead to alterations in muscles similar to those in people with obesity problems and type 2 diabetes

Biological scientist Dr Hans-Peter Kubis, who's just led a study into what soft drinks do to our bodies, has reached some shocking conclusions. When you read what he discovered, you may well choose never to touch the fizzy stuff again.
Fizzy drinks appear to increase the risk of heart disease, liver failure and hypertension
Fizzy drinks appear to increase the risk of heart disease, liver failure and hypertension
Once upon a time, fizzy drinks were an occasional luxury treat. 
Now, many of us think nothing of having at least one every day — maybe a lunchtime can of cola or a ‘natural’ lemonade from Pret. 
We use them as instant pick-me-ups, and even as ‘healthy’ sports aids bought from vending machines at the gym. 
No trip to the cinema is complete without a supersize soft drink, either.
It’s no surprise to learn, then, that our consumption of soft drinks has more than doubled since 1985 — from ten gallons per person a year to more than 25 gallons.
We know this is not entirely good for us — but could sugary soft drinks be so dangerous that they should carry health warnings? 
This may sound alarmist, but new medical studies are have produced worrying results.
Even moderate consumption — a can a day, or just two a week — may alter our metabolism so that we pile on weight.
The drinks also appear to increase the risk of heart disease, liver failure and hypertension. 
In children, soft drinks have been linked to addict-like cravings, as well as twisting kids’ appetites so they hunger for junk food.
Already, countries such as Denmark and France are introducing soft-drink taxes to cut consumption. 
In the U.S., around 100 medical and consumer organisations are now calling on the Surgeon-General to investigate the health effects of soda and other sugary drinks. 
Should we in Britain follow suit? 
Sugary soft drinks come in numerous guises — from ‘innocuous’ fizzy elderflower to ‘health’ drinks such as Lucozade and ‘sports’ beverages like Gatorade.
Last year, we swallowed an astounding 14,585 million litres of soft drinks, an increase of more than 4 per cent in 12 months, according to the British Soft Drinks Association. 
Our spending rose by nearly 6 per cent to £13,880 million in 2010 — the fastest growth in the past seven years. 
We clearly like our soft drinks. But the medical evidence is stacking up against them.
Last week, a study suggested they can cause weight gain and long-term health problems if drunk every day for as little as a month.
What's in your favourite?   

The research, by Bangor University and published in the European Journal Of Nutrition, reported that soft drinks actually alter metabolism, so that our muscles use sugar for energy instead of burning fat.
It seems that exposure to liquid sugar causes genes in our muscles to change their behaviour, perhaps permanently.
Not only do we pile on weight, but our metabolism becomes less efficient and less able to cope with rises in blood sugar, say the researchers.
This, in turn, increases the risk of type 2 diabetes.

‘Having seen all the medical evidence, I don’t touch soft drinks now,’ says Dr Hans-Peter Kubis, a biological scientist and expert in exercise nutrition who led the research.

'I think drinks with added sugar are, frankly, evil.’
In fact, the Bangor study is only the latest in a long line of reports warning of the link between soft drinks and serious health problems.
A study in March, for example, warned that men who drink a standard 12oz can of sugar-sweetened beverage every day have a 20 per cent higher risk of heart disease compared to men who don’t drink any sugar-sweetened drinks.
The research published in the American Heart Association’s journal, Circulation, followed more than 42,000 men for 22 years.
Blood tests found soft-drink fans had higher levels of harmful inflammation in their blood vessels, and lower levels of ‘good’ HDL cholesterol.
Energy drinks such as Red Bull have boomed in popularity in the past ten years. The regular version contains seven teaspoons of sugar per 250ml
Energy drinks such as Red Bull have boomed in popularity in the past ten years. The regular version contains seven teaspoons of sugar per 250ml
The study suggested this may be a result of the sugar rush these soft drinks cause.
This increased sudden sugar load on the body may also explain research which found just two carbonated drinks (330ml each) every week appears to double the risk of pancreatic cancer, reported the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention.
Meanwhile, soft drinks with high levels of fruit juice may cause severe long-term liver damage, according to an Israeli study.
People who drank two cans of these drinks a day were five times more likely to develop fatty liver disease — a precursor to cirrhosis and liver cancer.
Dr Hans-Peter Kubis says he no longer touches soft drinks after his research
Dr Hans-Peter Kubis says he no longer touches soft drinks after his research
In the Journal of Hepatology, the lead investigator, Dr Nimer Assy, warned high levels of fructose fruit sugar in the drinks can overwhelm the liver, leading it to accumulate fat.
Perhaps most disturbing is the picture emerging from various studies that suggest sugary drinks expose children to a perfect storm of obesity threats.
Four years ago, researchers at University College London’s Health Behaviour Research Centre discovered a powerful — and lucrative  — effect sugary soft drinks have on youngsters. 
The study of 346 children aged around 11 found drinking soft drinks makes them want to drink more often, even when they’re not actually thirsty — and that their preference is for more sugary drinks. 
Children who drank water or fruit juice in the tests didn’t show this unnecessary need to drink. 
The researchers expressed concern that this may set the children’s habits for life — in particular, giving them an ‘increased preference for sweet things in the mouth’, without compensating for the extra calories by eating less food.
More recent research suggests fizzy drinks may sway children’s tastes towards high-calorie, high-salt food. 
Part of this worrying phenomenon was revealed earlier this year by Oregon University investigators. 
Their study of 75 children aged between three and five found those given sugary soft drinks avoided eating raw vegetables such as carrots or red peppers, but went for foods high in calories, such as chips. 
This did not happen when the children were given water to drink. 
The researchers said this wasn’t about simple fussiness. Instead, our tastes for food and drink seem to be shaped in a like-with-like manner. 
This discovery comes on top of an earlier finding, by heart experts at St George’s, University of London, that children and teenagers who consume sugary soft drinks are far more likely to prefer foods high in salt. 
Dr Kubis believes that liquid sugars not only alter our bodies, but also foster addict-like responses. 
‘The body absorbs liquid sugars so much faster because they are more easily taken into the stomach lining, and this rapid intake fires up the body’s pleasure responses,’ he says.
Coca-Cola in the U.S. has reduced levels of one of its ingredients following fears that it could cause cancer
Coca-Cola in the U.S. has reduced levels of one of its ingredients following fears that it could cause cancer
‘At the same time, your brain reduces its desire for the taste of nutrients such as vitamins or minerals,’ says Dr Kubis. This is what makes these sugary drinks so habit-forming.
‘There is a huge overlap between what is addictive behaviour with drugs and the use of sweet food,’ he adds. 
‘In lab experiments, even rats who have been made addicted to cocaine will prefer to have a sugary drink instead of cocaine.’ 
He says sugary drink habits aren’t necessarily an addiction ‘because not all of us suffer withdrawal symptoms when we cut out sugary drinks’. 
The story may be different with children, however. ‘With children, there is more evidence of addictive behaviour,’ Dr Kubis says. 
‘You get tantrums, restlessness  and distress if you stop their soft-drink consumption.’
This may be because children’s developing brains are more prone to developing sugar cravings, or because children’s desires are simply more transparent.
Sadly, there’s little point shifting from sugary soft drinks to ‘healthy alternatives’ such as fizzy real-fruit lemonades or fruit-juice drinks, says Dr Kubis, because the liquid sugar problem still remains.
‘Posh soft drinks with real fruit might be marketed as healthy, but this may be rather cynical, as such drinks can be just as dangerous,’ he explains, adding that some fruit drinks contain more sugar than a can of fizz.

SUGAR: THE BIGGEST DANGER HIDDEN IN A CAN OF COKE

Sugar cubes
Doctors are in no doubt - the biggest danger from cola doesn’t come from the hidden additives, flavourings  or colourings, but from sugar.
Too much sugar leads to obesity, the major cause of cancer in the western world.
It also increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, causes heart disease and increases the risk of stroke.
The over-consumption of sugar has been linked to depression, poor memory formation and learning disorders in animal experiments. And it rots teeth.
Each regular can of  cola contains eight teaspoons of sugar. When you drink that much sugar so quickly, the body experiences an intense sugar rush.
The cane and beet  sugar used in Coca-Cola is used up quickly by the body,  which soon experiences a  rapid drop  in energy, leading to cravings for more sugar.
    
Even when it comes to ‘healthy’ sports drinks, the evidence is that they’re not only a waste of money, because you don’t need them, but they could also be harmful. 
An investigation by the universities of Oxford and Harvard warned that popular brands such as Lucozade and Powerade contain large amounts of sugar and calories which encourage weight gain, the British Medical Journal reported earlier this month.
On top of all this is the damage fizzy drinks can wreak on teeth. A study in the journal General Dentistry in June found that cola is ten times as corrosive as fruit juice in the first three minutes of drinking. 
One of the chief culprits is citric acid, which gives tangy drinks their kick.
Diet Coke has no sugar - but still contains chemicals that can rot the teeth
Diet Coke has no sugar - but still contains chemicals that can rot the teeth
A study in the British Dental Journal found four cans of fizzy drink a day increased the risk of tooth erosion by 252 per cent.
The drinks industry, of course, has spent countless millions of pounds bombarding us with sophisticated and expensive marketing in order to weld their products in  our minds to images of healthiness and fun.
Few who lined the streets of Britain for the Olympic torch procession could have failed to notice the role of Coca-Cola.
The company paid more than £100 million for the exclusive rights to be the official provider of soft drinks at the Games. 
The late Coca-Cola chief executive, Roberto Guizueta, said: ‘Eventually, the number-one beverage on Earth will not be tea or coffee or wine or beer. It will be soft drinks — our soft drinks.’
Today, however, there is a growing backlash against soft drinks.
Earlier this month, a group of leading health organisations, including the American Cancer Association, the American Diabetes Association, Yale University’s Rudd Centre for Food Policy and Obesity, and the American Heart Association, called on the U.S. Surgeon-General to investigate the health effects of soda and other sugary drinks.
Soft drinks play a major role in the U.S.’s obesity crisis, the campaigners say, and they want a study into them similar in scale and impact to the Surgeon-General’s landmark report on the dangers of smoking in 1964. 
Kathleen Sebelius, the former Governor of Kansas, who campaigns on behalf of the American Cancer Society, declared: ‘An unbiased and comprehensive report on the impact of sugar-sweetened beverages could . . . perhaps begin to change the direction of public behaviour in their choices of food and drinks.’
Legislators are already starting to act. In May, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, announced a ban on serving cartons bigger than 16oz (a pint). 
Last year, the Hungarian government imposed a tax on unhealthy drinks and foods.

CITRIC ACID: HELPING FIZZY DRINKS ROT YOUR TEETH

Lemons
Citric acid gives lemons, oranges and grapefruit their kick and cola its bite, helping to make the drink nearly as corrosive as battery acid when it comes to teeth.
Prolonged exposure to cola and other fizzy drinks strips tooth enamel causing pain, ugly smiles and — in extreme cases — turning teeth to stumps.
A study in the journal General Dentistry found that cola is ten times as corrosive as fruit juices in the first three minutes of drinking.
The researchers took slices of freshly extracted teeth and immersed them in 20 soft drinks. Teeth dunked for 48 hours in cola and lemonade lost more than five per cent of their weight.
A study in the British Dental Journal found that just one can of fizzy drink a day increased the risk of tooth erosion. While four cans increased the erosion risk by  252 per cent.
   
And, earlier this year, France imposed a tax on sugary soft drinks after a study found that more than 20 million of its citizens are overweight.
Health campaigners here are pressing for a similar tax. Researchers at Oxford University calculate that a 20 per cent tax on soft drinks would reduce obesity and overweight in Britain by 1 per cent — roughly 400,000 cases across Britain. 
‘We don’t get anything like that  level of success from trying to educate people about healthy eating,’ says researcher Dr Mike Rayner.
‘I am not suggesting that people should never have soft drinks,’ he stresses. ‘I myself like drinking them. But they really should be restricted to weekends and  holiday treats.’
Understandably, the idea of a tax has met stiff opposition from the British Soft Drinks Association.
Its spokesman, Richard Laming, argues that ‘soft drinks, like any other food or drink, can be consumed in moderation as part of a balanced diet, and there is no reason to tax them’.
On top of that, he says, UK soft drink manufacturers are producing more low-sugar products. 
‘About half of the soft drinks market in the UK is made up of reduced or zero calorie drinks nowadays.’
Nor is Mr Laming impressed by last week’s Bangor University findings. 
‘The study lasted only four weeks and had only a tiny sample size of just 11 people. That is no basis on which to make claims about effects that last a lifetime.’
Dr Kubis acknowledges the study’s limitations and says that he is working to produce a much larger trial to see if the findings are confirmed in people who start consuming large amounts of sugary soda. 
In this, he faces one significant problem.
‘It is difficult to find young people who have not previously been exposed to a lot of soft drinks,’ he laments.



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Monday, 30 July 2012

WHY YOU SHOULD FORGIVE AND FORGET

I find this amazing it's taken Joe Public to realise this and to even conduct a study on this. In my religion in Spiritualism we've always taught this and in Christianity also, it's good to forgive for holding on to past hurts only harms your own soul and I always believe you should be the bigger person and forgive. No war, dispute or argument can never be solved without dialogue and each life on earth is much to short to waste it with simmering anger and hurt underneath. So below in this article by the Daily Mail, is further proof to forgive and forget.


ACCEPTANCE

Acceptance 
In your heart sometimes
We have to accept
We cannot change things
Like 'Sorry'
'Acceptance'
Is a tough word to admit
This does not mean
You are beaten
It takes courage
To admit you were wrong
And courage 
To 'Accept' what is right
But if you truly believe
In your heart
What you feel instinctively is right
And if it feels true
Follow your goals
And realise your dreams

MPB ©  FROM 'MY LEGACY'













Why you SHOULD forgive and forget - it's good for your heart

  • Those who thought about a hurtful event in a forgiving way were protected from spikes in blood pressure
  • Hypertension increases the risk of heart attack and stroke

They say to err is human, to forgive divine. But new research has revealed that excusing people who have hurt you can actually boost your health.
Researchers from the University of California, San Diego, found those people who let go of their anger were less likely to see spikes in blood pressure.
They asked just over 200 volunteers to think about a time when a friend had offended them. Half of the group were told to think about how it had angered them while the other half were encouraged to consider it in a more forgiving way.
Forgive and forget? Those who do could be protecting their heart
Forgive and forget? Those who do could be protecting their heart
The particpants were then all distracted for five minutes after which they were told to think about the event again in any way they chose.
The participants were wired  up to monitors, which took blood pressure and heart rate readings.
The team, led by Dr Britta Larsen, found the angry group saw the greatest increase in blood pressure compared to the forgiving group after the first ruminating session. The effect was seen later on despite having the brief timeout period to calm down. However, there was no differences in heart rate.
The authors said that although it was small study, their research - published in the Journal of Biobehavioural Medicines - suggested forgiveness could 'lower reactivity' to stressful events and even offer 'sustained protection' from the physical impact.
Short-term rises in blood pressure are not known to be harmful. However, over a longer period high blood pressure - or hypertension - increases the risk of heart attack or stroke.
Around 30 per cent of adults in the UK have hypertension although many are unaware of it as there aren't obvious symptoms. Those most at risk are overweight, are of African or Caribbean descent, consume a lot of salt, don't exercise much, drink large amounts of coffee and are aged over 65.
The NHS recommends that all adults have their blood pressure checked every five years.



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Sunday, 29 July 2012

ANTI AGEING CREAMS DO THEY WORK?

I saw this article below in the Daily Mail and this sort of thing really annoys me. Do they honestly think we are all stupid? Fact NOTHING CAN BE ABSORBED VIA THE SKIN UNLESS ITS A MEDICINE and if it could it would have to be classified as a medicine and it would be prescription only. Essential oils because they are essentially the plants hormones can be and that is why they must be diluted and advice should be sought from a qualified Aromatherapist before using them. Ultra Violet A can also permeate the skin and it is this that damages our skin more than anything. Anyone who is qualified in anatomy and physiology would understand this, but marketing knows a vast amount of the public isn't so relies on ignorance to sell its products and tries to blind the public with its pseudo scientific terminology to aid it's cause.  Our skin is there to protect our inner organs to keep water and bacteria out and everybody knows how tiny bacteria is, if it was possible for the skin to absorb products, we would end up being in a right sorry state.  In the article below from the Daily Mail it also states  product infuses the skin with oxygen, this is total bunkum! oxygen can only be carried to the skin cells via the blood stream and interstitial fluid as the tiny capillaries that deliver oxygen and remove carbon dioxide are only one cell thick and need to be minute for this process. I'm sorry ladies but prevention is the cure too much UVA light will age you as the specialised cells within the Dermis that produce collagen and elastin are damaged by this. Drinking plenty of water, a balanced diet, not too much alcohol, regular exercise (tones up the cardiovascular system to speed up blood supply to the skin) and relaxation techniques, as stress hormones also damage the specialised cells that produce collagen and elastin and no smoking will help prevent wrinkles prematurely. The use of a good moisturiser to prevent the skin from drying out also helps and ladies it does not need to be expensive. The photograph of me on the background of my page here was taken a few weeks ago and I am 55 and I have not had a facelift, nor botox or any fillers. A few posts ago I did a review of an Aldi moisturiser that costs a mere £1.99, it works for me and I can highly recommend this product.

To explain:


THE SKIN HOW IT WORKS

Firstly please read the blogs and page on health as this will give an indication on a balanced diet.

If I were to ask you what is the largest organ in the body what would you say? It's not the liver or the intestines but the skin, it does a very important job for us and how many of us take it for granted and don't look after it.

HOW THE SKIN WORKS

The basics so you will understand how the skin works. The skin is comprised of 3 layers, the Epidermis the layer you can see, the Dermis the true skin and the subcutaneous.Cosmetics only work on the Epidermis and you can see how deep it is, if you have ever experienced a blister. A blister is caused when friction causes the Epidermis and the Dermis to separate and the fluid within the blister is lymph. The Epidermis has no nerve endings or blood supply that is why removing the top layer of a blister is not painful, not to be recommended though as it exposes the Dermis which is rich in nerves and a blood supply to infection.

The skin  has several functions to secrete sebum that oily substance on your skin, this is to help keep the skin moisturised by trapping moisture and forming a barrier together with sweat known as the 'Acid Mantle' The Acid Mantle is slightly acidic and acts as a Bacteriastat to inhibit bacteria. The skin secretes sebum via the sebaceous glands within the hair follicles and sweat via the Endocrine glands (there are another type of sweat glands know as Apocrine glands these are found in the axillary and pubic regions unlike Endocrine sweat bacteria act on Apocrine sweat quickly and this causes the characteristic Body Odour, these glands only become active after puberty and have a role to play in pheromones)

Our body temperature is regulated by the skin this is due to the  peripheral circulation either dilating to bring blood to the extremities of the body like the skin causing flushing to help loose some of the heat and also by sweating for as the sweat evaporates heat rises with it. The opposite happens when its cold the body conserves heat to vital organs more important than the skin, giving a more white/bluish appearance and may even induce shivering. At the base of every hair follicle there is a tiny cilary muscle when its cold and we start to shiver this muscle contracts causing the hair to stand up trapping a layer of air next to the skin, giving the appearance of goosebumps. Within the Dermis there are sensory nerves that detect temperature. We also have an insulatory layer of fat in the subcutaneous.

Our skin is waterproof so absorbs very little, the only things that can permeate the skin are medications, this includes patches such as Nicotine  and HRT and Essential oils (see Aromatherapy articles on Blog) COSMETICS CAN NOT. Do not believe the hype and sales talk ladies if it could be absorbed by the skin you you have to go to your Doctor for it and it would need to be licensed as a Medicine.

Our Skin is protected by sensory nerves that alert us to pain, pressure, touch, heat and cold, it is waterproof largely impermeable except to the substances above, fairly tough and it with its layer of fat below the dermis in the subcutaneous layer keeps us warm, protects our organs and bones, gives us shape. As fore mentioned the Acid Mantle helps protect from bacteria as bacterial growth is inhibited in its slightly acid environment. Melanocytes special little cells in the dermis increase as a result of UV light and give us tanning, the epidermis also thickens to help protect our skin. Also in the skin are mast cells and when they are damaged, they produce histomine, it gives the characteristic itching a weals associated by allergies, its function is to stimulate blood to the skin to repair and maintain it. However with allergies the body is hypersensitive producing this effect.

The skin also excretes some toxins through sweat but this is very very minimal, so do not believe the hype of some sales people who will suggest you have a detoxifying foot bath that will rid you of toxins as it changes the water to a dirty brown colour. Again this is sheer hype and nonsense for if ridding the body of toxins was that easy we wouldn't have a need for Dialysis Machines for those suffering kidney failure. It is the Liver, Kidneys and large Intestine that detoxify us.

Vitamin D is also formed in the skin as a result of the action of UV light acting on 7-dehydrocholesterol present in the skin, so everything in moderation we do need some sunlight.

CARING FOR THE SKIN

So you know know how the skin works and it's functions  and that's great when everything is in balance. However skin is a very sensitive organ but as far as the body is concerned it is a lesser important organ that the heart, lungs, liver etc, so priority is given to important organs at times of stress, whether that is emotional stress i.e. worry etc. or physical stress such as extremes of temperature and its very cold. 

What we put on the skin can throw it off balance, many people use soap and water, well thats fine for your body, but our face has more sebaceous glands, is more exposed to the elements and more open to micro-organisms. Why not soap and water? well soap is alkaline  and remember the acid mantle is slightly acidic, this maintains an environment where micro-organisms are less likely to multiply and if you use an alkaline product you will strip away this protective layer, making the skin more susceptible to infection. Because our sebaceous glands tend to be more active on the face, and this increase of sebum in nature's moisturiser, there may be more of a tendency for them to become blocked, if infection enters the blocked pores the result it a spot. There are a number of cleansing bars on the market and water activated cleansers around for those of you who like the feel of water on your face.

The trouble and risk of blocked pores is magnified if there is also a build up of dead skin cells. Now it takes roughly 28 days for new cells in the basal layer of the epidermis to form and be shed, this time span increases with age, as we get older our skin becomes more sluggish, if we don't cleanse our skin adequately enough a layer of dead cells sit on the surface making our complexion dull, combined with sebum these dead cells can block pores causing blackheads. Inncidently blackheads are not dirt but sebum and dead cells form a plug and oxidise  causing this this discolouration. In order to keep our complexions fresh and depending on the type of skin you have exfoliation should be carried out once to twice a week, with oily skin generally twice. There are various products on the market but avoid those exfoliators that are made from ground up nutshells and husks as these can be quite scratchy and can damage the surface of the skin leading to possible infection. Rather choose a product with fine micro beads. Some exfoliators work by dissolving dead skin cells and are often fruit based containing fruit acids or enzymes, these may irritate sensitive skin so its a good idea to patch test an area  before proceeding.

But before choosing what cleanser to use on your skin, you need to know what type of skin you have. Firstly normal skin is a rarity, normal skin is like the skin children have, its neither dry or oily, theres no visible pores nor shine, it has a good texture and colour, no spots, blackheads and is plump and has good elasticity. Now how many of us can say we have normal skin? Oily skin often has visible pores particularly down the 'T zone' of our faces, it becomes shiny very quickly, it is prone to blackheads and spots, its doesn't have dry, flaky patches and often has a sallow colour about it and make up slides of the face quite quickly. Dry skin, has no obvious pores, doesn't have a tendency to blackheads or spots, can have flaky itchy areas, often feels tight after cleansing and a tendency to line and can often be more highly coloured. Combination skin is by far the most common type of skin, it often has an oil 'T zone' with normal, if your lucky outer areas or dry cheeks. It is a combination of either of the aforementioned types. So you have 4 skin types. Now if only it was that simple but the skin has different conditions that affect it. Firstly moisture, it may surprise you to know that even oily skin can become dehydrated as this is down to moisture content in the skin and not oil. Central heating, changes in temperatures, windy weather and not drinking enough water, too much coffee, tea and cola drinks and alcohol all affect our skin and can lead to dehydration. Oily skin favours better than most as sebum can trap some moisture but not enough to prevent moisture loss. So its important you keep yourself hydrated and drink plenty of water to start with and use the correct moisturiser for your skin type. Moisturiser does what it says, its job is to trap moisture in the skin, with dry skin moisturisers, they generally are more oil based than one designed for oily skin and so on.

Cleansing is a matter of preference but your skin type will guide you as I mentioned early, some people prefer the feel of water on their skin so a rinse off type of cleanser will suit them. But whatever way you cleanse your skin, cleanse it twice once to remove make up and the grime from the day and second to deep cleanse the skin. Which leads me on to eye make up remover. The skin around the eyes is very delicate and is the thinest skin thickness on our bodies so treat it with care. Do not treat it roughly or rub cleanser harshly around the eyes as this will stretch this delicate skin. Eye make up is designed for this sensitive area and not all facial cleansers suitable, check the packaging. Which leads on to all in one cleansers and wipes, these are fine short term but not ideal in the long term. Many of the wipes contain alcohol and irritate sensitive eye tissue and certainly the same wipe should not be used for both eyes due to the risk of cross infection, the same goes for cotton wool pads and tissues.

Toners do we need them? well if you use a water based rinse of cleanser no you don't as the water is suffice to tone and freshen the skin, but if you use a tissue off cleanser yes you do to remove any residue of cleanser and grime. These vary from hydrasols (i.e. rose water) to witch hazel, avoid alcohol on the face as it will remove the acid mantle.

It may surprise you to know that skin after the age of 25 is considered mature but after the age of 25 ageing signs start becoming apparent. Prevention is better than cure and a lot easier. We know from Part 1 how UV light contributes to ageing so be sure your moisturiser contains a sun protection level of at least 15 thats the first thing to be aware of. Drink plenty of water to maintain moisture levels and avoid caffeinated drinks as they are diuretics as encourage the kidneys to excrete more urine and can lead to dehydration. A good balanced diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables to give the cells the right nutrients. Avoid smoking I explained in an earlier article how this ages the skin and does so by ten years. And there is stress, now that is difficult to avoid but there are things you can do, you can lessen its affects by relaxation and I will be giving tips to avoid the damaging effects due to stress later.

Anti-wrinkle cremes, well if you read the earlier article in Part 1 no cosmetic can penetrate the epidermis, so I have to say ladies expensive skin cremes are a total waste of money. The only thing I would say is that avoid products with mineral oil as this oil sits on the surface of the skin, yes it traps the evaporation of moisture but it can block the pores but its fine to use on the body, instead use a vegetable oil based product and by that I don't mean 'Crisp and Dry' some examples are Almond oil, Jojoba oil, Olive oil. With expensive cremes you are paying for the packaging and nice jar. There are temporary anti-wrinkle fixers that work by temporarily tightening up the skin or have fillers and light reflective powders that soften the appearance of lines. Simple things like avoiding squinting in the sun or getting your eyes checked if you have difficulty in reading will prevent many a line forming around the eyes




Rise of the wrinkle busters: The Duchess of Cambridge's favourite anti-ageing cream is put to the test... with incredible results (and at around £50 it won't break the bank)



Radiant: The Duchess is said to be a big fan of the Karin Herzog range
Radiant: The Duchess is said to be a big fan of the Karin Herzog range
As a beauty writer I am acutely aware that much pseudo-science is spouted by manufacturers in a bid to tempt the public to buy their latest wonder cream. And once, this was largely marketing guff.
All moisturisers are essentially an emulsion of oil and water. The way to works is simple: putting it on the skin traps moisture to the surface, and stops the uppermost layers from becoming dry. But can using one really stop the ageing process - or even make us look younger?
Today, the answer is yes. Anti-ageing products available on the High Street are increasingly high-tech, created using techniques borrowed from advanced medical research. And they actually work - as I discovered when I put one famous Royal’s favourite face cream to the test.
For a month, I used The Duchess of Cambridge’s moisturiser of choice - from Karin Herzog range - which you can pick up in most department stores at around £50 for a 50ml pot. And scientists analysing my skin told me there was irrefutable evidence that my wrinkles had been reduced by 27 per cent. So how is this possible?
Experts call this ‘the age of the cosmeceutical’. That’s a term coined to cover high-tech skincare that falls into the gap between cosmetics, which by law should make only a very temporary change to the skin, and pharmaceutical products, which can be provided only with a doctor’s prescription, and bring about lasting changes.
Although it’s not a term recognised in law by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority (MHRA), which licenses medicines in the UK, it is a useful description as the lines between cosmetics and medicines are becoming increasingly blurred.
Technically, any potion that makes a physiological change to the skin – reducing wrinkles and uneven pigmentation, and reversing sun damage and other dermatological problems – should be classed as a medicine.
Kate's moisturiser of choice - which costs around £50 for a 50ml pot from the Karin Herzog range - was tested over the course of a month
Kate's moisturiser of choice - which costs around £50 for a 50ml pot from the Karin Herzog range - was tested over the course of a month
But to put a product through medical drug-testing is a lengthy process costing millions, and not something that even the major cosmetics companies would want to do, not least because at the end of it you would have a product that could be sold only on prescription rather than over the counter.
However, it is beyond dispute that today’s cosmetics can make significant changes to the skin. In the past decade, skincare companies have been falling over themselves to provide credible proof of how well their products work to persuade us to buy them.
And this is not just the ‘surveys-show-that-nine-out-of-ten-women-thought-their-skin-looked-better’ type of proof, but clinical trials, where the product has been properly tested against a placebo under controlled conditions.
No 7’s Protect And Perfect line famously began to sell out repeatedly in 2007 after clinical trials on the product, which showed that it genuinely reduced wrinkles, were judged to be scientifically sound.
Olay’s Regenerist 3-point Treatment Cream caused a stampede the following year after trials confirmed it made skin firmer within 21 days. Two years ago, Clinique conducted trials to demonstrate that its Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector (a bit of a mouthful, but one heck of a product) produced comparable results in reducing skin pigmentation to hydroquinone, the standard prescription treatment for skin pigmentation.
And in the past few weeks, L’Oreal’s new Revitalift Laser Renew serum has been shown by a clinical trial to produce skin benefits comparable to treatment with a skin-resurfacing laser. You’d expect these new wonder-potions to cost a small fortune, but all the above are between £20 and £40.
Because technically these creams are doing more than they ought, it has led to a bizarre situation where companies don’t always want to let on just how extensive the effects of their products may be in case of calls for them to be recategorised as medicines.
It’s time the categories were redrawn, if you ask Dr Chris Flower, director general of the cosmetics trade body, the Cosmetic, Toiletry and Perfumery Association (CTPA).
Skin deep: Beauty writer Alice Hart-Davis looks beyond the pseudo-science of wonder creams and discovers one worthy of the hype
Skin deep: Beauty writer Alice Hart-Davis looks beyond the pseudo-science of wonder creams and discovers one worthy of the hype
‘We now understand better the physiology of the skin and its responses to ingredients and can see that where the borderline [between cosmetics and medicines] has been drawn is not necessarily the best dividing line,’ he says. ‘Cosmetics aren’t watered-down drugs any more than they are beefed-up shoe polish. The key thing is that they are safe, effective and high-quality.
‘We are now trying to work out the best legal way of saying “medicine takes ill people and makes them better and cosmetics take ordinary, healthy people and make them better”. Ageing isn’t a disease but we can do things to improve it.
‘Cosmetics used to be purely decorative. But now we understand that even a simple moisturiser changes the way cells express genes and enzymes, so it’s interacting with the skin – but no one would seriously think that Vaseline should be labelled a medicine. Rather than arguing over the interpretation of legislation, we should take a commonsense approach and look at whether a product is aimed at sick people or healthy people.’
In the interests of research (and, yes, of vanity) I make a point of trying interesting new skincare lines and using them diligently for a month – the length of time it takes for any beneficial changes in the skin to show up – just to see what they are like.
Alice before and after
Last year, the selection ranged from Elizabeth Arden (lovely – its Prevage serum and SPF-fortified day cream suited my skin very well) to No 7’s Lift & Luminate (not ideal for me), though the product that made my skin look best of all – glowing, vibrant, neither dry nor overly oiled – was Environ, a range created by a South African cosmetic surgeon and based on the benefits to the skin of high-strength Vitamin C.
But then I was persuaded to try Karin Herzog, a Swiss range of handmade products that have trapped oxygen within the cream (much harder to do than it sounds).
The creams claim to infuse the skin with healing oxygen by a process that I didn’t quite understand so I’ll spare you the details.
What did make me prick up my ears was the quiet aside that these are the products that the Duchess of Cambridge has been using for years, and to which she is apparently devoted. If they’re good enough for her outstandingly beautiful skin .  .  .
The packaging is old-fashioned and they weren’t particularly nice to use – the roller-ball that dispensed the facial oil was reluctant to roll, the serum bottle had a savage squirt, and the peroxide in the main cream turned my eyebrows ginger.
As usual, I couldn’t see any difference in my skin but I’d taken the precaution of getting a professional before-and-after assessment with Nick Miedzianowski-Sinclair at the 3D Cosmetic Imaging Studio in Wimpole Street, Central London.
Nick’s specialist Visia camera took detailed photographs of my face, noting the exact extent of my wrinkles, pigment patches and so on, and after five weeks of using Karin Herzog there was a measurable reduction in wrinkles, age spots and red areas of the face. As Nick put it, ‘there’s some good evidence of efficacy’; genuine evidence that using this range will make your skin look younger.
I could have stuck with Herzog but I’ve been tempted away by Neo Strata, an ‘advanced anti-ageing regime’ from America – studies showed that after four weeks, 93 per cent of users saw improvements in wrinkles, skin texture and forehead lines.
Because the brand contains high levels of active ingredients such as ****glycolic acid*** SEE BELOW (which helps plump the skin), it is sold only through skin clinics, where the staff can keep an eye on how your skin is responding.
Cutting edge: Cream is applied on the epidermis. Products are becoming increasingly high-tech
Cutting edge: Cream is applied on the epidermis. Products are becoming increasingly high-tech
These clinics are a halfway house, if you like, between the prescription skincare that a doctor or dermatologist could provide and over-the-counter products.
And more developments will arrive thick and fast. To find out what the future hold for our faces, I visited the Episkin Predictive Evaluation Centre centre on the outskirts of Lyon, where scientists have actually cloned human skin in order to test new face cream formulations.
Episkin is owned by L’Oreal, the world’s biggest cosmetics company, and this is where the ingredients, and later the formulations, that will comprise many of the world’s best-selling skincare products are put through their paces on the reconstructed human skin – bionic skin, if you like – that is made in the lab.
The building itself looks unremarkable. There is no perimeter fence or security guard at the entrance, just a metal gate set in a high white wall. Inside, technicians, gloved and covered from top to toe in blue-hooded suits are hunched over tiny pots containing small, wet, white, floppy discs. This is Episkin - living, human skin.
I get to handle some of it. As I prod it with my latex-gloved fingers, the scientists regard me with tolerant amusement.
‘It’s quite strong,’ I venture.
‘It’s a bit like blister skin,’ says Dr Estelle Tinois-Tessonneaud, director of the Centre and the woman who, as a PhD student 30 years ago, invented the process by which the skin is created. ‘It is white because it has no blood supply and this version has no pigment, either.’
A scientist with a batch of cloned skin at the L'Oreal lab in Lyon
A scientist with a batch of cloned skin at the L'Oreal lab in Lyon
It is grown from skin cells taken from off-cuts donated by local plastic surgery clinics – then developed into discs of tissue.
As well as Episkin, which is used as the epidermis, or outside layer of the skin, the centre makes other skin models including ‘RealSkin’, which adds a dermis, the lower layer of skin, to the epidermis. Staff have even developed corneal (eye) and gum tissue.
Episkin has been authorised by the European Centre for the Validation of Alternative Methods to replace animal testing – something L’Oreal has been working towards, and investing £25 million a year in, for 20 years.
Of the 130,000 samples of tissue now made in Lyon, 30 per cent are sold to other cosmetics companies to use as alternatives to animal testing. (Such experiments have been banned in the EU since 2009, although some tests, for which alternatives have yet to be established, are still allowed.)
The rest of the tissue is used by L’Oreal for testing ingredients and the finished formulae for safety and effectiveness. Since 2008, some 13,000 formulae have been evaluated in this way.
And it’s not just L’Oreal that is producing such high-tech products, using the latest science.
At Boots, you can now find BioEffect, a serum containing a substance called epidermal growth factor (EGF). The scientists who discovered EGF won a Nobel prize for their work. Numerous peer reviewed trials have shown a measurable effect on the skin, reducing the number of wrinkles.
There’s nanotechnology (the science of using molecules measured in millionths of a metre) in sunscreens. These microscopic particles of the sun-blocking ingredient titanium dioxide make sure your face won’t be left ghostly white.
Stem cells, both plant and human, have been investigated for their regenerative power and put to work in serums. Genomics research, the study of the whole gene, has been used by skincare companies to work out which ingredients will ‘switch on’ genes within the skin that become less active with age – and the results are on sale in Olay’s bestselling Pro-X range and Lancome’s Genifique line.
Avon ladies will soon be selling a serum containing a new molecule called A-F33, which helps older skin regenerate itself as quickly as younger skin does. Again, there’s Nobel prize-winning research behind this molecule, and Avon has exclusive rights to it for two years.
Such detailed research is an expensive business, too; L’Oreal’s research and innovation budget for 2010, for example, was £525 million. But with the British skincare market set to top £1 billion this year, there is a vested interest in being at the vanguard.
Rather than taking the old-fashioned route of mixing up trial formulae and seeing what they might do for skin, L’Oreal’s scientists at the Episkin Centre are now doing this virtually, using computerised data from their previous experiments to evaluate new ingredient molecules and formulae for safety and for beneficial effects, before mixing up a batch.
Because the computer models can whizz through this process, it is fair to assume that the pace of change, and of new advances, is only going to accelerate in future. Watch this face…

***GLYCOLIC ACID DOES NOT PLUMP UP THE SKIN, IT'S AN ACID PEEL, THAT'S WHY STAFF HAVE TO KEEP AN EYE ON CLIENTS AS TOO MUCH USE WOULD CAUSE DAMAGE AND SCARRING BY THINING THE SKIN TOO MUCH (HONESTLY YOU WOULD THINK JOURNALISTS WOULD GET THEIR FACTS CORRECT)


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Friday, 27 July 2012

MEDITATION CAN UPLIFT AND GIVE YOU A POSITIVE OUTLOOK


Loneliness won't leave you alone? How mindful meditation can ease your woes

  • The practice also boosted immunity in older adults

Solitude: Mindfulness helps improve your state of mind say scientists
Solitude: Mindfulness helps improve your state of mind say scientists
Older adults who suffer from loneliness are at far greater risk of health problems such as heart disease, Alzheimer's and premature death.
Schemes to encourage social networking such as creating community centres have had limited effectiveness.
Now scientists have come up with a new way for people to tackle the social ill - on their own.
Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University found that teaching mindful meditation techniques was effective at reducing feelings of isolation, while at the same time boosting their ability to fight disease.
Study leader J. David Creswell, said: 'We always tell people to quit smoking for health reasons, but rarely do we think about loneliness in the same way.
'We know that loneliness is a major risk factor for health problems and mortality in older adults. This research suggests that mindfulness meditation training is a promising intervention for improving the health of older adults.'
The 2,500-year-old practice dating back to the time of the spiritual leader Buddha focuses on creating an attentive awareness of the present moment.


Published in 'Brain, Behavior & Immunity,' the study also found that meditation lowered inflammation levels, which is thought to promote the development and progression of many diseases.
For the study, the researchers recruited 40 healthy adults aged 55-85 who indicated an interest in learning mindfulness meditation techniques. Each person was assessed at the beginning and end of the study using an established loneliness scale. Blood samples also were collected.
The participants were randomly assigned to receive either the eight-week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program or no treatment.
Tranquility: Two-hour meditation classes also reduced inflammation
Tranquility: Two-hour meditation classes also reduced inflammation
The MBSR program consisted of weekly two-hour meetings in which participants learned body awareness techniques - noticing sensations and working on breathing - and worked their way toward understanding how to mindfully attend to their emotions and daily life practices.
They also were asked to practice mindfulness meditation exercises for 30 minutes each day at home and attended a day-long retreat.
The researchers found that eight weeks of the mindfulness meditation training decreased the participants' loneliness.
Meanwhile the blood samples revealed that the training reduced the participants elevated levels of an inflammatory-causing gene.
Study co-author Steven Cole from UCLA said: 'Reductions in the expression of inflammation-related genes were particularly significant because inflammation contributes to a wide variety of the health threats including cancer, cardiovascular diseases and neurodegenerative diseases.
'These results provide some of the first indications that immune cell gene expression profiles can be modulated by a psychological intervention.'

Creswell added that while this research suggests a promising new approach for treating loneliness and inflammatory disease risk in older adults, more work needs to be done.
'If you're interested in using mindfulness meditation, find an instructor in your city,' he said.
'It's important to train your mind like you train your biceps in the gym.'

A MINDFUL EXERCISE - 3 MINUTE BREATHING SPACE

Awareness

Bringing yourself into the present moment, adopting an alert yet comfortable posture, close your eyes, if this is comfortable, and bring your attention inward. Becoming aware of your body and the surface upon which you are sitting, draw your focus to the spine, each vertebra stacked upon the other from sacrum to skull.

Now, turning your attention to your thoughts and feelings, ask, 'What thoughts and feelings are around right now? What bodily sensations are present?'. Acknowledge your experience in this moment, even if it is unwanted.

Gathering

Now, gently direct your awareness to your breathing, following each in breath and each out breath, one after the other, if necessary, saying to yourself, 'I am breathing in. I am breathing out.'

The breath can function as an anchor to bring you into the present moment since the breath is always with us and available at any time as a focus of attention. Regulating the inbreath with the outbreath can assist in maintaining awareness and stillness.

Expanding

Now, expanding your awareness to the whole body, imagine that you are breathing with the body as a whole including your posture and facial expression. When you're ready, open your eyes and return to your day.
Source: Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust


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PSYCHIC QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

PSYCHIC QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

IS IT REALLY POSSIBLE TO FORECAST THE FUTURE AND OTHER QUESTIONS?

I am often asked various questions pertaining to the spirit world and various aspects of the psychic, here are some of them: I will in time feature more questions and answers as this webpage evolves

Q. Is a psychic or medium a fortune teller?
A. It may surprise you to know psychics and mediums are not fortune tellers
Q. Is it possible to forecast the future?
A.Well not 100% and this is because of free will.
Q. What is free will?
A. Free will is YOUR right to decide what you want to do about a situation, it is a choice
Q. How does free will affect a situation?
A. Well before we incarnate as Spirit in a human body, we decide on what experiences and challenges that will benefit our spiritual growth. However we are given the choice (free will) as to whether we go through with the experience or challenge. In effect we are allowed to change or mind.
Q. So are you saying we all know what lies before us?
A. Well in a way we all do. Remember we are 'Spirit' in a human body and your spirit does retain a memory but it is deep in our subconscious. This memory is retained deeply for a reason to help us fulfill our experiences and challenges we ourselves chose. However it is also at this deep level so we are not so aware. If you knew what lay before you would you go through with it? Probably not but we still retain this memory deeply and this reflects in our Aura.
Q. So what is the Aura?
A.The aura is The Aura is an electromagnetic field that surrounds living bodies, this includes people, animals, plants and crystals and is composed of several layers that are constantly moving. The Aura links us to whats known as Universal energy i.e. that is all the knowledge in the Universe past, present and future. It is on this aura that psychics are able to tap into and access your past, whats going on in the present and the possible future and I say possible specifically if your goal or desire is dependent on other people, for remember every person involved in a situation has free will.


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Astrid Brown (Author)
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