How to treat respiratory tract infections with everyday foods and spices

Garlic-GarlicOilIt is almost the peak of the winter season here in the Northern Hemisphere, which means coughs, colds, influenza, and various other respiratory ailments are on the rise. Such conditions are typically the result of poor diet, low immunity, and lack of natural sunlight exposure, among other things, but developing them does not have to be inevitable, especially if you take the proper preventive steps now to avoid them. Here are eight foods and spices to help keep you free of respiratory tract infections during these cold, winter months:

1) Echinacea. This flowering herb has been a staple in natural medicine for hundreds of years, as it possesses unique, immune-boosting compounds that work almost immediately at the first sign of infection to quell it quickly. Commonly referred to throughout history as a “cure-all” herb, echinacea helps naturally boost the body’s own natural levels of properdin, a chemical substance that activates the part of the immune system responsible for warding off bacteria and viruses. Echinacea can also help reduce the severity of existing cold and flu symptoms, and help quickly eliminate such conditions (http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/echinacea-000239.htm).

2) Garlic. A powerful immune booster, garlic has also been used for many centuries as a natural remedy for respiratory illness. Long before synthetic antibiotics were invented, in fact, garlic was the medicine of choice for treating infections, as it contains powerful medicinal compounds such as allicin, sulfhydryl and various other sulfur-containing compounds that ward off disease. Adding more fresh garlic to your diet or taking garlic supplements is a great way to fortify your immune system to avoid disease (http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/garlic-000245.htm).

For a great healing tea recipe using garlic, check out The Nourishing Gourmet‘s “Garlic, Honey, and Lemon Tea:”
http://www.thenourishinggourmet.com

3) Green onion (scallion). A close relative of garlic, the green onion also possesses powerful immune-boosting compounds that make it an excellent remedy and preventive food for respiratory tract infections. Rich in organic sulfur compounds, as well as vitamin C, B vitamins, and trace minerals, green onions are a food you will definitely want to eat plenty of during the winter months. Try making a vegetable soup out of green onions, leeks, and garlic for immune support, and add any other ingredients you like into the mix (http://www.pyroenergen.com/articles09/green-onions-scallion.htm).

4) Ginger. Packed with more than a dozen antiviral compounds, ginger is an excellent herb for both preventing and treating colds and flu. Ginger is especially helpful if you already have a respiratory ailment that you are trying to get rid of, as the herb works exceptionally well at relieving pain and disinfecting the body. Ginger can be taken as tea, brewed into a tincture, or chopped or grated and added to food (http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/ginger-000246.htm).

5) Elderberry. No immune-boosting arsenal would be complete without elderberry, an herb that ranks among the most effective remedies for treating respiratory illness. Rich in antioxidant flavonoids, elderberry is uniquely suited to both prevent and treat illness due to its unique ability to minimize the swelling of mucous membranes. The fruit is also a powerful anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and anticancer food (http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/elderberry-002880.htm).

The Wellness Mama blog has a great recipe for making your own elderberry syrup medicine at home:
http://wellnessmama.com

6) Oregano. A potent antibiotic and antiviral herb, oregano, and particularly oil of oregano, is another amazing remedy that works particularly well at treating respiratory illness after it has already formed. You can mix five or six drops of oil of oregano in water and gargle with it for instant relief, or you can drink the entire thing down to kill a flu or cold in as little as 24 hours. Oil of oregano can also be purchased as a supplement in capsule or gelcap form (http://www.earthclinic.com/Supplements/oregano-oil.html).

7) Vitamin C. Though it is sometimes mocked by the mainstream medical system as an inert substance, vitamin C has long been confirmed as a powerful nutrient for boosting immunity and warding off disease. A 2004 study review out of Finland, for instance, found that respiratory patients who take vitamin C are far less likely to develop colds, pneumonia, and other respiratory infections (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15605943). Just be sure to take non-GMO ascorbic acid, sodium ascorbate, or natural vitamin C as it comes from “superfoods” like acerola cherry and camu camu berry (http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/infocenter/vitamins/vitaminC/).

8) Vitamin D. Millions of Americans have dangerously low levels of vitamin D in their system, which is a primary cause of chronic illness today, including respiratory illness. This is why it is important, especially during the winter months, to either supplement daily with between 2,000 and 10,000 international units (IU) of vitamin D3 — some doctors recommend that severely deficient patients take upwards of 40,000 IU of vitamin D3 daily — or use a tanning bed or tanning wall daily.

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How to be a good person?

Tips

  • Also dont be racist.
  • Be nice and respectful to others.
  • Show people that you respect them like they respect you.
  • Do not lie to others, as this is lying to yourself.
  • Consider what kind of friends would you pick.
  • Understand that you can be looked down on by a more popular belief. Unfortunately, that is just human nature. But remember that being a good person is harder than being a bad person, so never take the easy way out. Stand up to bad people with a small sense of pride in yourself that says, “Hey, I am stronger than you will ever be.”
  • Be kind.
  • Don’t be judgmental.
  • Have time with your family and also your friends.
  • Study the lives of persons you consider as good, and try to emulate them. Study the lives of persons you consider as not so good, and identify similar faults in yourself and correct them.

Remember, happiness is a state of mind. The only thing in the world that we can really control is ourselves, so chose to be happy, and control yourself by purposely maintaining a positive mental attitude

Spend some money on learning English

If you spend your money on something, you will want to use it. For example, if you buy an expensive tennis racket, you will probably go out and play tennis every day.

This rule is also true for learning English. If you want to increase your desire to learn English, buy a new dictionary, an interesting English-language book, English-language cable TV, etc. The idea is simple: You paid for it, so you will want to use it, and you will improve your English.

There is a problem with this method. It only works for a short time. You usually lose your desire to learn English after a few days. To keep learning, you would have to buy something every week!

However, this method is helpful, because it gives you an impulse to start learning. For example, if you buy a dictionary of phrasal verbs, you will probably learn some words from it. Then you should try to use them. For example, write an e-mail message with these words. This will increase your motivation (as explained before), and you will learn more.

Find a friend who is learning English

If you can find a friend who is learning English and is on a similar level of skill, you will be in an excellent situation:

  • you will have someone to talk about English with. These conversations will increase your interest in English,
  • learning English will be easier, because you will be able to discuss your problems with your friend.
  • you will study English more, because you will want to be better than your friend. 🙂

You should meet your friend regularly. Ideally, he/she should live near you, or go to the same school as you. If you absolutely can’t find anybody willing to learn English with you, you can try to find somebody by e-mail. This is a worse solution: your conversations will probably be less frequent, and it is difficult to compete with someone who you don’t know well.

Talk to people about English

This is a very simple method, but it is very effective. Here’s how it works:

You usually talk about things which interest you. But the opposite is true, too.If you start talking about a boring subject, you will begin to get interested in it.

Imagine you are studying a subject that you hate. You are bored and tired, but you have to pass the test tomorrow. If there are people near you, you have two options: you can tell everybody how much you are suffering or you can tell those people about the things you’ve learned. If you choose the first option, you will only feel worse.

If you choose the second option, and start a conversation on the “boring” subject, you will begin to look at it in a totally different way. Suddenly it will become a subject worth talking about — therefore, an interesting subject.

How can you begin such a conversation? If you’re studying English, you can surprise another person by talking to him/her in English. Say (in English): Hi, I’m studying English and I hate it. Or you can say (in your first language): Hey, I’ve learned 50 English words today. Do you know what’s the English word for …? If there are no people near you, you can telephone or send an e-mail message to your friend.

What will your friends say? Probably they won’t be very interested, but it doesn’t matter! The important thing is this: After talking about English, you will study it with more passion. Try it.

Use English whenever you can

Probably the most important way to improve your motivation is to use English.

Using English is fun. It is simply very enjoyable to use your English to read a good book, understand a song, watch an interesting movie, get an answer to a computer problem, exchange e-mails with a native speaker, etc. The more you use English, the more you will want to use it.

This is great, because using English is learning English. When you’re reading an interesting article or watching an exciting movie, you are using your English, but you are also learning new words and phrases. When you’re writing a message on an English-language discussion forum, you are using your English, but you are also practicing your writing.

But using English can also improve your general attitude to English andincrease your motivation to study English in other ways. For example, if you see that your knowledge of English pronunciation helps you understand a movie or speak more clearly, you will be motivated to study pronunciation even more. If you see that checking your sentences in a search engine lets you write error-free e-mail messages, you will want to keep doing that. If you memorize some words with an SRS and later you come across them in a movie or an article, you will want to add even more things to your SRS.

Aside

Quranic wisdom for Men and Women

Al-Ahzab (The Confederates)
Chapter 33: Verse 35

Equal Footing
“For Muslim men and women, for believing men and women, for devout men and women, for true men and women, for men and women who are patient and constant, for men and women who humble themselves, for men and women who give in charity, for men and women who fast, for men and women who guard their chastity, and for men and women who engage much in Allah’s praise, for them has Allah prepared forgiveness and great reward.“

Initially, Quranic verses used only the masculine plural form to refer to the women and men in the new faith community. For years, “believers” (al-muminun), and “the truthful” (as-sadiqun), either referred specifically to men or to the men and women who constituted the Prophet’s first Companions. Once, a woman (or several, according to the different traditions) asked the Prophet why women were not explicitly mentioned in the revealed message. The Book – which, while revealing a universal message, also included responses to the questions asked by the Men around the Prophet – was later to mention women and men distinctively, as in the above verse.

This evolution of the message is part of divine teaching in the process of revelation carried out over twenty-three years: the faithful are thus led to evolve in their understanding of things and critically reconsider some of their cultural or social practices. The status of women, who were sometimes killed at birth because of the shame they might bring, was to be reformed in stages, as verses were revealed.

It thus appeared more and more clearly that the Quran’s message and the Prophet’s attitude were apt to free women from the cultural shackles of Arab tribes and clans and from the practices of the time. The Creator addresses women as being on an equal footing with men, their status as beings and believers is the same as men’s, and the requirements of worship are absolutely identical.

Quranic wisdom for Men and WomenAl-Ahzab (The Confederates) Chapter

GOOD LISTENER

As you recognize the difference between passively hearing and actively listening, not only will your grades improve but your confidence will rise.

 Here are some tips for actively listening in class. They all involve taking control of your life. Each one is a choice worth making.

  1. Determine to be a good listener. Make up your mind that you’re going to improve your grades, enhance your skills, develop new interests, and discover hidden talents.
  2. Come to class prepared. Do your homework. Review the lessons from the days before because they’re going to relate to what you’re going to learn today. When you need help, get it.
  3. Be positive. Choose to learn new skills and facts. (Yes, the decision is yours.) You’re the one who’s most responsible for your learning, so keep a positive attitude. Don’t let anyone get you off track.
     
  4. Be attentive. Focus on learning. Keep eye contact with the speaker, usually the teacher, or other smart students who are participating and contributing to the learning. Pay attention to what they say, how they say it, and the responses of others to their words and ideas. Emulate their strengths and put your own personal spin on them.
  5. Take good notes. Learn what kind of notes is best for you. Outlines? Lists? Diagrams? Drawings? Leave plenty of margin space so you can go back later and add to the notes or jot down questions for the next class. Listen for key points. Learn to write quickly, perhaps with your own abbreviations and notations. Then, go back to the notes as soon as possible after class to clarify anything you may have trouble remembering later. Nothing worse than looking at some scribble and thinking, “Now, what did I mean by that?”
  6. Take control. Stay away from distractions. That means disrespectful, talkative students – even if they’re your friends. (Although, why would you want to be friends with people who are determined to hold you back?) Don’t give in to distractions. Decide to give 100% of your attention to the speaker. Again, it’s your choice.
  7. Keep up. When the material gets tough, choose to stay with the program. Concentrate even harder rather than taking the easy way out and stopping listening. Recognize that staying with something difficult and mastering it eventually will only add to your skills and confidence. Strength builds more strength.
  8. Ask questions. If you’re struggling, ask clarifying, meaningful questions. Teachers can’t know if you’re having trouble if you don’t tell them. We teachers want you to succeed. We want you to enjoy our subjects as much as we do. We want you develop your talents. Show an interest, and watch how encouraging we can be!
  9. Be respectful. Treat others the way you want to be treated. Don’t interrupt, criticize, mock, or be cynical. This is true in class and beyond. Listen, really listen, to what others are saying.

Be patient with yourself. You’re a work in progress. Start now in the classroom and be amazed at how far these skills will take you!

Music Lessons Early in Life Increase Brain Development

Editor’s Choice
Academic Journal
Main Category: Pediatrics / Children’s Health
Also Included In: Neurology / Neuroscience
Article Date: 13 Feb 2013 – 10:00 PST

Playing the recorder in kindergarten, piano lessons in first grade, clapping to the rhythm throughout elementary school music class, all of these can contribute to developing the brain.

The new findings, published in the Journal of Neuroscience, reveal that musical training earlier than the age of seven has a significant impact on the development of the brain. Those who began musical training early had more powerful connections between motor regions – the parts of the brain that aid in planning and executing movements.

The study was conducted in a laboratory at Concordia University and led by professor Virginia Penhune.

The findings reveal significant evidence that the years between ages six and eight are an extra sensitive time when musical training combines with normal brain development to create deep-rooted changes in motor abilities and brain structure.

Penhune commented:

“Learning to play an instrument requires coordination between hands and with visual or auditory stimuli. Practicing an instrument before age seven likely boosts the normal maturation of connections between motor and sensory regions of the brain, creating a framework upon which ongoing training can build.”

The researchers tested 36 adult musicians on a movement task and then scanned their brains.

Half of the participants started their musical education prior to age seven, while the other half started at a later age. Both groups had identical numbers of years of musical training and experience.

Both groups were also compared to people with little or no official musical training.

When analyzing motor skills of the two groups, musicians who started before the age of seven showed more accurate timing, even following two days of practice.

In the area of brain structure, musicians who were musically educated early showed heightened white matter in the corpus callosum – a bundle of nerve fibers that links the left and right motor areas of the brain.

Most notably, the authors found that the younger a musician began their training, the greater the connectivity. However, the brain scans showed no significant difference between the non-musicians and the musicians who started their training later in life. This finding reveals that the brain developments involved occur early or not at all.

The findings also suggest that the advantages of early musical training reach beyond the ability to play an instrument, because the test given to the participants was a non-musical motor skill task.

Penhune concluded:

“It’s important to remember that what we are showing is that early starters have some specific skills and differences in the brain that go along with that. But, these things don’t necessarily make them better musicians. Musical performance is about skill, but it is also about communication, enthusiasm, style, and many other things that we don’t measure. So, while starting early may help you express your genius, it probably won’t make you a genius.”

A study done last year by University Hospital San Raffaele (Milan, Italy), revealed that musical training increases skills and development of the brain. The musical stimuli caused a reconstruction of gray matter in those brain regions that are involved in coordinated movement. Findings showed the more complex the task was, the better.

Written by Kelly Fitzgerald
Copyright: Medical News Today
Not to be reproduced without permission of Medical News Today

Source : http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/256355.php