Our mental health is very important. Millions of Americans are suffering from mental health conditions every year. Based on the data from the National Alliance on Mental Illness, one in 5 American adults are affected by mental illnesses. One of the major root causes of mental health conditions is stress. It is important that we avoid stressful conditions and environment to keep our mind healthy.
Let us know 11 tips on how to effectively reduce stress:
Eat fruits and vegetables. Avoid sugary and salty snacks. Foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids can keep your heart healthy.
Cardiovascular exercises are proven to relieve stress. It is important that you move your body and muscles to avoid stress. Walking is the most perfect and easiest choice.
Listen to music
Listen to relaxing music. According to studies, slow-paced music can help lower blood pressure and can lower the levels of cortisol, the hormone that is linked to stress.
Tea contains caffeine which makes our brain feel relaxed and calm. They are also rich in antioxidants that get rid our body of toxins.
Research suggests that daily meditation make your brain stronger in fighting stress. To meditate, you just have to sit up straight, close your eyes and recite a mantra.
According to a study, deep breathing can counter the effects of stress by lowering the blood pressure and slowing the heart rate.
When you are happy, the brain boosts chemicals called endorphins which help lighten your mood and give you a relaxing feeling. This will also decrease cortisol levels which are related to stress.
Your mind and body need rest. It is important that you achieve at least eight hours of sleep every night. Sleep is very vital in maintaining your blood pressure. Lack of sleep is also seen as the major cause of stress.
Call a friend
When you’re feeling stressed, do not hesitate to talk with your friend. Through this, you can release the tension and the pressure that keep you stressed.
Always maintain a balance in your life – work, family, and social life. During weekends, consider going out of town or going to the beach just to unwind and refresh your mind.
Take five minutes and evaluate how you are doing. Check if you can still manage the stress. It is important that you are aware of your own mental health.
Infographic by: www.theglobalsuccessacademy.com
Our heart is considered as the most important organ in our body. It maintains healthy blood circulation which every organ in our body needs. However, our cardiovascular health is being taken for granted. According to The University of Arizona, cardiovascular disease is the major cause of death in the United States.
Let us know how we can prevent heart disease and stroke:
Be Physically Active
People who don’t exercise are at higher risk of chronic illnesses, including heart diseases. It is important that an average person performs cardiovascular exercises for about 150 minutes per week to keep the heart strong and healthy.
A healthy diet and proper nutrition are they key toward a healthy body. A person should eat plenty of fruits and vegetables and whole grains. Foods that are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids are good for the heart. Also, limit your intake of saturated fats, sodium, and added sugar.
According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, one in every 5 deaths in the America each year is caused by cigarette smoking. The chemicals in tobacco smoke damage your blood cells which can affect the function of your heart and your blood vessels.
Monitor Blood Pressure
Approximately, over 50 million Americans have hypertension or high blood pressure. To prevent hypertension, you must exercise regularly and eat foods that are good for the heart. Also, it will help you to avoid salty foods. Some people may also be prescribed of medicine to control their blood pressure.
Control Cholesterol Levels
High cholesterol or blood lipids contribute to cardiovascular diseases. It is important that you avoid oily and fatty foods that may increase your cholesterol levels in the body. Also, saturated fats and refined sugars may contribute to increased cholesterol levels.
Maintain Healthy Weight
Apparently, it is your primary responsibility to maintain a healthy weight. Increased in weight leads to obesity which also leads to chronic diseases, including diabetes, heart disorders, and stroke, among others. To maintain your weight, exercise and proper diet are the main ingredients.
When you have diabetes, you have a higher risk for heart diseases. It is important that you limit your sugar intake so you decrease your chances of acquiring diabetes. It is also important that you are aware of the different types of diabetes and their symptoms.
When you are stressed, you are endangering your heart. Among the ways to counter the effects of the inevitable stress is to have an adequate sleep, engage in social activities, avoid situations that make you angry, and do cardiovascular exercises.
Know Your Risks
Heart diseases can be hereditary. It is important that you are aware of your family’s medical history. Apart from heart diseases, diabetes and stroke can also be traced through the family history. Moreover, be conscious of your environment. They can increase your risk to heart diseases.
Consult Your Doctor
Lastly, always find time in seeing your heart doctor. They will assess your heart health and will advise you of the essential things that you should do to protect your heart.
Health is wealth. We need to eat healthy foods that are rich in vitamins and nutrients to keep our body healthy. But apart from diet and proper nutrition, we also need to exercise. The Department of Health and Human Services recommends that an average human should get at least 150 minutes of moderate cardiovascular exercise every week. There are a lot of forms of cardiovascular exercise – running, biking, and swimming, among others.
Cardiovascular exercise or aerobic activity plays a vital role in keeping our body healthy. Here are the 8 reasons why you should start doing cardiovascular exercises now!
Cardio exercises are perfect if you want to lose weight. A pound is equivalent to 3,500 calories. Based on the table provided by Harvard Medical School, a 185-pound person loses 355 calories from running with speed of 5 meters per hour in just 30 minutes. Thus, the individual can lose a pound in two weeks of consistent cardio.
Burn belly fats
Cardiovascular exercises are also perfect to eliminate belly fats. The burning effect depends on the intensity of the aerobic activity. According to a study, postmenopausal women lost fats in their belly and other parts of their body when they performed 300 minutes of cardio exercises per week.
Improves heart health
Apparently, aerobic exercises promote cardiovascular health. The American Accreditation Healthcare Commission found out that cardiovascular exercises can reverse some heart disease risk factors. Moreover, regular cardio exercises the heart, increasing its rate level which promotes proper blood circulation.
Enhances brain function
The Harvard Health Publications have found out that cardiovascular exercises can enhance brain function. According to one study, aerobic activities increase the size of the hippocampus, the portion of the brain which is related to learning processes and verbal memory.
Engaging in physical activities increases your stamina. With this, cardio exercises can prevent you from fatigue syndromes and the feeling of getting tired easily. When your body is exposed to cardiovascular exercises, it will adapt to the demands of the activity.
Cardio exercises also uplift the mood. According to a research, 156 depressed participants saw how aerobic activities changed their view in life. In 16 weeks of consistent cardio, 70% of the total participants were no longer diagnosed with major depression. The research found out that cardio provides an alternative medicated approach in treating depression.
Promotes sound sleep
According to a study, people who perform 150 minutes of cardio per week experience 65% of improvement in their sleep. Based on the findings of the National Sleep Foundation, cardio exercises do not just manage depression, but it can also treat insomnia. Aerobic activities have great effects on the circadian rhythms (body clock).
Prevents chronic diseases
Physical activities can strengthen your immune system which prevents you from acquiring chronic diseases, including heart disorders, premature death, obesity, and type 2 diabetes. Performing cardio exercises decreases blood pressure, reduces body compositions, and balances insulin levels, among others.
The vegetables are among the greatest gifts of the Earth to humans. They are rich sources of all the essential vitamins and nutrients. However, according to U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only one out of 10 Americans eat fruits and vegetables.
If you want to achieve a longer life, reconsider these 14 healthiest vegetables in the world to be included in your diet:
30 grams of spinach provides 56% of your daily vitamin A and K requirement. A spinach is also rich in antioxidants which can prevent you from certain chronic diseases, especially cancer.
Probably the richest source of vitamin A is the carrot. One cup of carrots provides 428% of the daily recommended value of vitamin A. It is also a powerhouse of antioxidants, vitamin K, and potassium.
Broccoli is loaded with Sulforaphane, a significant substance that is proven to reduce the production of breast cancer cells. Eating broccoli also lowers your risk from acquiring heart disorders.
Garlic is considered the best defense against heart disorders. It also has the potential of reducing your risk of certain cancers, diabetes, and digestive problems.
A cup of raw kale provides calcium, copper, potassium, and B vitamins. It also contains vitamins A, C, and K, and antioxidants which are beneficial in promoting good heart health. Another study suggests that it can lower blood cholesterol and sugar.
Green peas are loaded with essential nutrients – fiber, protein, vitamins A, C, and K, folate, niacin, riboflavin, and thiamin. They are effective in supporting digestive health and eliminating cancer cells in the body.
Ginger is used in curing nausea and vertigo. It also contains anti-inflammatory properties which can treat disorders like, gout, lupus, and arthritis. Other studies suggest that ginger can treat body pains and even diabetes.
Vitamin K, selenium, thiamin, and riboflavin are plenty in asparagus. Half a cup of asparagus also supplies your folate needs. Asparagus is recommended for pregnant women.
The most notable strength of Swiss chard is its potential of preventing damages caused by diabetes mellitus. It contains fiber, protein, manganese, magnesium and essential vitamins.
A red cabbage is a rich source of anthocyanins which can help decrease cholesterol levels. Red cabbage extracts can also strengthen the heart and liver from inflammation and damages. It is also a good vitamin C source.
Red Bell Pepper
Red bell peppers are very rich in beta-carotene and vitamins B and C. They also contain lutein which helps prevent cataracts, macular degeneration, and other eye vision problems.
A rich source of vitamin K is the beet greens. They are proven to decrease your risk of getting type 2 diabetes. It is also a very good provider of iron for strong immune system.
Sweet potatoes are perfect sources of fiber and protein. They also provide vitamin A, B and C, manganese, and potassium. They can decrease your risk of certain types of cancers.
Collard greens can decrease your risk of getting osteoporosis. According to a study, eating collard greens per week can help prevent the development of glaucoma that can lead to blindness.
Among these 14 super vegetables, which is your favorite?
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, one out of five students is being bullied in school and in the community. Only 36% of these children reported bullying. With the onset of social media, bullying has gone digital. Children now bully other children through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media platforms. Based on the study of Patchin & Hinduja (2016), 34% of students experience cyberbullying.
Here are the harmful effects of bullying in the online world:
Because cyberbullying takes place in the cyberspace, children who are being bullied are feeling humiliated in the online world. Usually, the bully posts nasty photos, texts, or messages that can be permanent in the digital platform. The victim may be exposed and may encourage others to increase the humiliation.
Anger and Vengeance
The victims may be angry to the cyberbullies. With this, there is a huge tendency that they will hit back the cyberbullies in the cyberspace by commenting or posting nasty photos as well. Cyberbullying creates a boomerang effect in which the victim will copy the action as a form of revenge.
It may also resort to violence in which the victim may resort to hurting the cyberbully in person. There are many instances in the United States in which victims are reported to have attacked their bullies because of cyberbullying.
If they cannot tolerate the bullying, they will become stressed which will, later on, develop to depression. Depression is still the leading cause of suicide in the world. According to Web MD, 2 out of 100 young children are suffering major depression. One of the reasons for their depression is bullying.
Because the victims are being humiliated in the cyberspace, there is a huge tendency that they will develop low self-esteem. With this, they show disinterest in school, making friends, engaging in social activities, and building relationships, among others.
The effects of cyberbullying can negatively affect the performance of the victim. They tend to be less participative and sociable which leads to poor grades.
Stress can increase the person’s risk of chronic diseases, including heart diseases, obesity, and diabetes. If cyberbullying continues, the victim may show disinterest in life which will lead him or her to practice a sedentary life.
As mentioned earlier, victims of bullying have suicidal thoughts. These thoughts interfere their normal social, mental and physical functioning.
The eyes are very important. It provides humans access to the world. Thus, everyone is required to take care of their eyes. Apart from again, we need to be cautious of our actions and our environment. In the statistics, there are over 250 million suffering from vision problems, including Computer Vision Syndrome. In the United States, more than 43 million people will suffer age-related eye disorders by 2020, according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology.
To prevent vision problems, take care of your eyes with these 10 effective ways:
In order to achieve good eye health, one must eat foods that are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, lutein, zinc, and vitamins E and C. They prevent vision problems, including cataracts and macular degeneration. Foods like salmon, tuna, eggs, nuts, and beans are good for the eyes.
Cigarette smoking increases your risk to acquiring cataracts. The smoke can also damage your optic nerves which will develop to macular degeneration, uveitis, and other eye problems.
Protect Your Eyes
Protect your eyes from extreme UV rays by wearing the right pair of shades. Too much exposure to UVA and UVB rays can cause macular degeneration. Specialized coatings in lenses are also available for specified eye health benefits.
Avoid Rubbing Your Eyes
Rubbing your eyes is never the solution to ease the itch. Rubbing can cause friction in your eyes which will lead to redness and irritation. If you experience itchy eyes, wash your eyes with warm water or buy prescribed eye drops.
Wash Your Hands
In certain cases, your hands may be in direct contact with your eyes – putting contact lenses, removing eyelashes or putting makeup. It is important that you keep your hands sanitized before you touch your eyes to avoid the spread of bacteria.
When we get dehydrated, one part that is affected is our eyes. Our eyes need moisture, and one way of keeping the moisture is by drinking a lot of water.
Exercise Your Eyes
According to American Academy of Ophthalmology, regular exercise can delay the onset of macular degeneration. But apart from exercising our body, it is also important to do eye exercises to strengthen your eye muscles.
Get Adequate Sleep
Our eyes need to rest, too. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, our eyes are required to have at least five hours of sleep to replenish. Lack of sleep may cause eye spasms and can lead to serious vision problems.
Give Your Eyes a Break
Remember the 20-20-20 rule. If you are using the computer, make sure that you give your eyes a break every 20 minutes, then look at an object that is 20 feet away from you for 20 seconds.
Visit Your Eye Doctor
Lastly, it is very important to meet your eye doctor once a year. The ophthalmologists will check if you have eye problems. They will also recommend you eyewear that will aid your vision. Moreover, they will prescribe you some vitamins and supplements that will keep your eyes strong.
The eyes are probably the most important sensory organ. Without the eyes, we cannot see the beauty of the world. There will be plenty of limitations on how we live our life. Thus, it is important to take care of our eyes. According to the World Health Organization, 253 million people in the world have vision impairment. One of these vision problems is the computer vision syndrome (CVS).
Overview of Computer Vision Syndrome
Also called as Digital Eye Strain, the Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS) is acquired from the prolonged use of computers, tablets, smartphones, television, and other digital devices. Computer Vision Syndrome causes too much eye discomfort and vision problems.
Based on the statistics from the American Optometric Association, there are more than 10 million visits to eye doctors for CVS related problems every year. In the 2015 survey by The Vision Council, 65% of the American adults have experienced CVS. If an adult spends more than 2 hours in front of the computer, there is a 90% chance they will develop CVS. In the United States, an American worker spends more than seven hours on the computer. This condition can decrease their work productivity at about 20%.
Signs & Symptoms
There is no direct finding that could prove that computers can cause long-term damages to the eyes. However, computer vision syndrome can really be annoying which can affect your daily productivity. When you have a computer vision syndrome, you may experience:
- Eye fatigue
- Blurry vision
- Double vision
- Dry eyes
- Red, irritated eyes
- Neck and shoulder pains
Other effects may include itching or burning of eyes, tearing, pain in the back, arms, and wrist, and general fatigue.
Causes & Risk Factors
The main reason why computer vision syndrome occurs is that of prolonged exposure to digital devices. On the other hand, there are risk factors that may encourage the development of vision-related symptoms.
- Uncorrected vision problems (Myopia, hyperopia, astigmatism, etc.)
- Viewing distances
- Poor lighting conditions
- Eye conditions (dry eyes, sore eyes, conjunctivitis, etc.)
- Wearing of contact lenses
If the following symptoms occur, it is advised for the individual to immediately seek medical attention. The ophthalmologist or eye doctor will conduct a comprehensive eye examination. This may include the testing of the visual requirements at the computer and the digital device working distances.
The ophthalmologist will ask for the patient history to determine if the patient is having other health medical problems or medications being taken. The patient will then under visual acuity measurements to assess the health vision. Lastly, there will be tests to evaluate how eyes move and work together.
To avoid the computer vision syndrome, it is important to strictly follow the 20-20-20 rule, especially to those regular computer users. The user must look away from the screen every 20 minutes and focus on something that is 20 feet away for about 20 seconds. While doing this, the user must consistently blink to maintain the moisture in the eyes. The use of eye drops is also recommendable.
Technology has dramatically changed how humans deal with life. The rise of computers and the internet have improved various applications – business, education, entertainment, and health, among others. According to Internet Live Stats, over 3.4 billion in the world has access to the internet. That’s 46% of the total world population. People nowadays are dependent on computers – research, communication, and productivity. However, scientists have found out that the use of computers affects a human’s well-being.
Here are the 7 worst common health problems associated with computer use:
There are different ways on how we use computers. But most commonly, people sit on a chair and face the desktop monitor placed on a desk. According to research, regular computer users complain about muscle soreness and muscle fatigue. They also experience numbness in back, chest, arms, shoulders, and feet. The major cause of these is poor posture while using the computer.
Too much focus on a computer screen is bad for the eyes. According to American Optometric Association, prolonged exposure to computers, tablets, and smartphones cause computer vision syndrome. An average American worker spends about seven hours a day on the computer. To avoid this condition, one should follow the 20-20-20 rule.
Computer use also caused headaches and migraines. According to Very Well, there are various factors that trigger headaches. This includes illumination, patterns, and images in the computer. Also, poor posture contributes to the onset of headaches.
Prolonged computer use also increased the risk of people to stress. The hazards of computer use, plus poor health, job environment, and work pressure provide stress. It can also lead to poor concentration, weariness, and constant headaches. If the person cannot tolerate stress, it will lead to depression and more serious mental health disorders.
The leading indicator of a sedentary lifestyle is the use of the computer for several hours. Approximately, 2.1 billion people or 30% of the world population are obese or overweight. The use of computer makes these people, especially children to be inactive, which will increase their risk to obesity and later on, to diabetes and heart disorders.
Repetitive Stress Injury
When you continue to stress your musculoskeletal parts, it may indicate repetitive stress injury. The most common parts affected of this are the neck, shoulder, and your fingers. Thus, it is important that computers users follow proper posture and the proper positioning of the computer, desk, and chair.
Part of computers is radiation. Most computers have Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) on the monitor which emits X-ray radiation that is extremely bad for the health. Being exposed to radiation can increase one’s risk to cancer, migraines, insomnia, and tumors. It can also lead to miscarriage and birth defects. Most recently, scientists have found out that placing laptops in the lap affects male fertility. Computer radiation may not just decrease sperm count, but will also trigger skin irritation.
These are some of the reasons why you should regulate your use of computers.
Being a parent in the digital era feels like you are obliged to provide your children a smartphone or any digital gadget. Technology changes how our children learn and develop. Through gadgets, they are exposed to various learning opportunities. On the other hand, overuse of technology provides negative health effects to our children.
According to U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, children spend 8 hours a day just watching electronic screens. From 26% in 2012, children using tablets increased to 55% in 2016 (Influence Central, 2016).
As parents, you are responsible for regulating your children’s use of technology. Here are our ten ways on how to effectively manage your children’s exposure to gadgets:
Limit Screen Time
Specify the time that you allow your parents to use smartphones and other devices. It is recommended that they use technologies for about two hours daily only. A study suggests that children like the idea of having a schedule for their phone use.
Engage Children in Physical Activities
Encourage your children to play outdoors with other children. This will prevent them from obesity and will improve their social skills, very essential for their development.
Make Sure They Sleep on Time
According to research, children should sleep about 10 hours a day. Make sure that they go to bed and sleep as early as 8 in the evening. Do not allow gadgets within their reach during sleep.
Monitor Their Digital Activities
Always monitor what your children watch on TV, apps they play on their tablets, and content they access on the internet so you can avoid them from violent and sexual contents.
Let them Practice the 20-20-20 Rule
It is important that they take a break from using technologies. Let them practice the 20-20-20 rule – take a 20-second break every 20 minutes and focus on anything about 20 feet away.
Don’t Let Gadgets Do the Babysitting
Most parents now rely on smartphones to entertain their babies. However, exposing your toddlers to technologies at an early age affect their cognitive development and other areas of their health.
Use Gadgets with Good Lighting
Discourage them from using gadget at very poor lighting conditions. This will cause them computer eye syndrome or eye strains and even headaches. Make sure you enable the auto-brightness mode.
Educate them on the Consequences
As parents, it is your primary duty to educate them about the health consequences of using technologies. Let them realize that real social interaction is still healthier than just looking at their tablets.
Consider Signing a Contract
Some parents also consider signing a contract with their children. The contract specifies the time or duration the children are allowed to access their smartphones and gadgets. If you need a guide, there are several cell phone contracts available on the web.
Spend Time with Your Children
Most importantly, do not ever lose time with your children. How your children grow depends on how you raise them. Be a responsible parent to have a responsible child.
In this modern era, children are exposed to television, computers, smartphones, and gadgets at an early age. Technology is seen as a tool to aid their learning and development. According to Influence Central, the average age of children owning a smartphone is 10.3 years old. Tablets have been the most popular device among children. 64% percent of the total children population in the United States have access to the internet through their tablets.
Despite the ideal goal of gadgets for children, scientists and researchers warn on the possible negative effects of gadget use to children’s health.
Here are ten reasons why gadget use in children should be regulated:
According to Pagini (2010), overexposure to technologies, including smartphones, TV, and the internet has been associated with impaired learning among children. It also contributes to children developing increased impulsivity, speech development delay, and attention deficiency, among others.
Small (2008) suggested that the use of technology in children promotes delay in their cognitive development. Children should be exposed to the real environment. Thus, gadgets are detrimental to children learning and development (Rowan, 2010).
Since children are busy with their gadgets, they are less exposed to physical activities, like playing outside or sports. According to a survey, one out of four children in the U.S. is obese because of their inactivity. They are at risk for an early heart attack.
According to a study, children spend 6 or more hours using their gadgets. 60% of parents do not restrict their children from using technology. With this, Kaiser Foundation (2010) found out that children are sleep deprived which affects their grades in school.
The use of technology also increases the risk of children from acquiring mental illnesses, especially depression. Technology overuse may also contribute to the rising rates of children with attachment disorder, autism, bipolar disorder and more.
When children cannot control their use of technology, they are gradually entering the addiction phase. According to Gentile (2009), one in 11 children is addicted to technology. Less parental supervision on children contributes to their addiction.
Smartphones and other wireless devices are categorized by the World Health Organization as “2B risk” due to radiation emission. Thus, they issued a cautionary warning to parents to regulate the use of technology among children in 1 to 2 hours per day only.
Gadgets steal the attention of children. They lose responsiveness to the external environment. Thus, overuse of technology can contribute to attention deficiency and decrease in memory and concentration.
TV and the internet are sources of violent media content. According to Anderson (2007), young children are exposed to sex, murder, rape, torture and other violent acts which causes them to develop aggression and anger problems.
Rowan (2010) suggests that technology is no longer sustainable for the children. With too much attention on gadgets, they lose vision for the future. They even cannot keep in touch with the real world.
As early as now, it is advised that parents supervise their children in using technologies.