Saturday, December 1, 2007

Ten Winter Skin Savers

Ten Winter Skin Savers
 by: Shreelata Suresh

Winter brings with it drier, rougher skin, flakiness and itchiness and chapped sore lips. Combat winter skin woes with these tips from the ancient healing tradition of ayurveda:
1. Drink lots of water. Internal hydration keeps skin cells plump and healthy. Water also helps transport nutrients to skin cells, keeping them nourished. According to ayurvedic healers, water should be at room temperature or slightly warm to avoid hampering digestion. Water-rich vegetables like leafy greens and green-skinned squashes are great for internal hydration as well as skin nourishment. Avoid alcohol and caffeinated drinks, which are dehydrating.
2. Cold weather can cause the body’s systems to stagnate. Eating warm cooked foods, drinking warm water or herb/spice teas and moderate daily exercise can help improve circulation, digestion and elimination, keeping skin healthy and clear.
3. Heated homes, workplaces and automobiles can wreak havoc on skin. Turn heat down to the lowest level that you are comfortable with. Supplement moisture balance in your environment with the use of room humidifiers. Moisture balance in the environment also helps prevent dry nasal passages and eyes.
4. The rough, dry nature of Vata dosha, winter’s dominant energy, can be pacified by including some healthy fats in your daily diet. Ayurvedic healers recommend ghee (clarified butter). Olive oil is another excellent choice. Blanched, soaked almonds offer lipid support as well as nourishment.
5. The thought of a long, hot bath on a cold winter day can be appealing, but over-exposure to hot water can dry skin out even more. Keep baths or showers short, limit them to one per day and use lukewarm, not hot, water. If you have Vata skin, add a few drops of bath oil to your bath.
6. Put away that bar of soap or shower gel, and switch to a milder, gentler cleanser for both face and body. Soap can irritate and exacerbate dry skin conditions. Ayurvedic healers recommend ground oatmeal or chickpea flour mixed with a little milk. If your skin is naturally dry, add some almond meal and a few drops of aloe vera or sesame oil. Don’t scrub excessively, and dab skin with a soft towel after the bath or shower--just enough to remove excess moisture.
7. A good moisturizer, suitable for your skin type, is a must in winter, to keep skin lubricated. For best results, apply the moisturizer to damp skin immediately after cleansing, to help lock in surface moisture. Pay attention to knees, elbows, hands and feet, which tend to be drier than the rest of the body. If your skin is naturally oily, a light application is best to avoid clogging pores. Dry Vata skin benefits from deep-layer lipid support several times a week. Ayurvedic healers recommend facial oils blended especially for Vata skin that nourish and protect while they lubricate.
8. Pay extra attention to hands and feet, where skin can crack and peel when dry. Always apply moisturizer after you wash your hands. Limit exposure to water by wearing gloves when you do chores such as washing dishes. A light application of massage oil right before you go to bed can keep skin on extremities lubricated and also help you fall asleep faster. If your skin is naturally dry, soak feet in warm water for 10 minutes, then apply shea butter to heels and soles and wear socks before you go to bed.
9. Do not forget adequate sun protection for exposed skin, even if the sun feels milder during the winter. If you’re out on the slopes, remember that snow reflects the sunlight, doubling the damaging effect of the sun’s rays. Wear a natural lip balm to protect your lips.
10. Weekly exfoliation is important to remove dead skin cells and prevent skin from looking dull. But make sure you use a very gentle exfoliating product, and don’t scrub too hard or too long. Follow exfoliation with a hydrating mask.
Note: This ayurvedic information is educational, and is not intended to replace standard medical care or advice. Consult your physician before making changes to your diet or lifestyle.

About The Author

Shreelata Suresh is a yoga instructor from the Bay Area. She writes on yoga and ayurveda. For more information on ayurveda, please visit

This article was posted on January 01, 2005


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Make Your New Year's Resolution Stick

Make Your New Year's Resolution Stick
 by: Lynn Bode

The New Year is upon us. Do you have a New Year's Resolution? Well, if you're like most Americans (88 percent in 2001 according to a GNC poll), you have at least one resolution. And, if you are like the majority of these promise-makers, your resolution is probably related to health and fitness. In 2001 (according to GNC), 55 percent promised to eat healthier, 50 percent resolved to exercise more, and 38 percent wanted to lose weight.
While resolutions are well-intentioned, unfortunately most people fail at keeping them. With all the hype surrounding these promises, it's easy to get caught up in it without really taking them seriously.
We live in a throw-away society and even our resolutions, I'm afraid, are not immune. However, especially for promises that include improving our health, it's in our best interest not to take them lightly.
So, what's the secret to successful resolutions? While you can't wave a magic wand and make your resolution come true, there are some easy steps to take that will make it easier to fulfill your promise to yourself. Choose an obtainable goal. Resolving to look like a super model is not realistic for the majority of us, but promising to include daily physical activity in our lives is very possible. Avoid choosing a resolution that you've been unsuccessful at achieving year after year. This will only set you up for failure, frustration and disappointment. If you are still tempted to make a promise that you've made before, then try altering it. For example, instead of stating that you are going to lose 30 pounds, try promising to eat healthier and increase your weekly exercise. Create a game plan. At the beginning of January, write a comprehensive plan. All successful businesses start with a business plan that describes their mission and specifics on how they will achieve it. Write your own personal plan and you'll be more likely to succeed as well. Break it down and make it less intimidating. Rather than one BIG end goal, dissect it into smaller pieces. Set several smaller goals to achieve throughout the year that will help you to reach the ultimate goal. Then, even if you aren't able to reach your final goal, you will have many smaller, but still significant, achievements along the way. For example, if your goal is to complete a 10K race, your smaller goals could be running a 5K in less than 30 minutes, adding upper and lower body strength training to increase your muscular endurance, and running 2 miles with a personal best completion time. Make Contingency Options: Don't assume sticking to your plan will be smooth sailing. Plan on hitting bumps along the resolution road and be prepared with specific ways to overcome them. What will keep you from skipping your workout or stop you from having a cigarette? This may mean seeking help from family or a professional, writing in a journal, etc. Give It Time: Most experts agree that it takes about 21 days to create a habit and six months for it to actually become a part of your daily life. Reward yourself with each milestone. If you've stuck with your resolution for 2 months, treat yourself to something special. But, be careful of your reward type. If you've lost 5 pounds, don't give yourself a piece of cake as an award. Instead, treat yourself to something non-food related, like a professional massage. Ask friends and family members to help you so you have someone to be accountable to. Just be sure to set limits so that this doesn't backfire and become more irritating than helpful. For example, if you resolve to be more positive ask them to gently remind you when you start talking negatively. Don't go it alone! Get professional assistance. Everyone needs help and sometimes a friend just isn't enough. Sometimes you need the help of a trained professional. Don't feel that seeking help is a way of copping out. Especially when it comes to fitness, research studies have shown that assistance from a fitness professional greatly improves people's success rate. Limit your number of promises. You'll spread yourself too thin trying to make multiple changes in your life. This will just lead to failure of all of the resolutions. Test Your Flexibility: Realize that things change frequently. Your goals and needs may be very different in April then they were when you made your resolution in January. Embrace change, even if that means that your resolution is altered. Keep A Journal: A journal helps you recognize your positive steps and makes it harder to go back to the same old habits.
On average only about 20% of us keep our New Year's resolutions. Unfortunately, some of the biggest failures are found in fitness resolutions. But don't let the statistics get you down. By following the tips above you'll be better equipped to fall into the successful 20% category.

About The Author

Lynn Bode is a certified personal trainer specializing in Internet-based fitness programs. She founded Workouts For You, which provides affordable online exercise programs that are custom designed for each individual. Visit: for a free sample workout. Fitness professionals take your business online, visit:

This article was posted on January 01, 2005

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Herbs as medicines.

Herbs as medicines.
 by: Danny & Susan Siegenthaler

Herbs or medicinal plants have a long history in treating disease. In traditional Chinese medicine, for example, the written history of herbal medicine goes back over 2000 years and herbalists in the West have used "weeds" equally long to treat that which ails us. We are all familiar with the virtues of Garlic, Chamomile, Peppermint, Lavender, and other common herbs.
Interest in medicinal herbs is on the rise again and the interest is primarily from the pharmaceutical industry, which is always looking for 'new drugs' and more effective substances to treat diseases, for which there may be no or very few drugs available.
Considering the very long traditional use of herbal medicines and the large body of evidence of their effectiveness, why is it that we are not generally encouraged to use traditional herbal medicine, instead of synthetic, incomplete copies of herbs, called drugs, considering the millions of dollars being spent looking for these seemingly elusive substances?
Herbs are considered treasures when it comes to ancient cultures and herbalists, and many so-called weeds are worth their weight in gold. Dandelion, Comfrey, Digitalis (Foxglove), the Poppy, Milk Thistle, Stinging nettle, and many others, have well-researched and established medicinal qualities that have few if any rivals in the pharmaceutical industry. Many of them in fact, form the bases of pharmaceutical drugs.
Research into the medicinal properties of such herbs as the humble Dandelion is currently being undertaken by scientists at the Royal Botanical Gardens, in Kew, west London, who believe it could be the source of a life-saving drug for cancer patients.
Early tests suggest that it could hold the key to warding off cancer, which kills tens of thousands of people every year.
Their work on the cancer-beating properties of the dandelion, which also has a history of being used to treat warts, is part of a much larger project to examine the natural medicinal properties of scores of British plants and flowers.
Professor Monique Simmonds, head of the Sustainable Uses of Plants Group at Kew, said: "We aren't randomly screening plants for their potential medicinal properties, we are looking at plants which we know have a long history of being used to treat certain medical problems."
"We will be examining them to find out what active compounds they contain which can treat the illness."
Unfortunately, as is so often the case, this group of scientists appears to be looking for active ingredients, which can later be synthesised and then made into pharmaceutical drugs. This is not the way herbs are used traditionally and their functions inevitably change when the active ingredients are used in isolation. That's like saying that the only important part of a car is the engine – nothing else needs to be included…
So, why is there this need for isolating the 'active ingredients'?
As a scientist, I can understand the need for the scientific process of establishing the fact that a particular herb works on a particular disease, pathogen or what ever, and the need to know why and how it does so. But, and this is a BIG but, as a doctor of Chinese medicine I also understand the process of choosing and prescribing COMBINATIONS of herbs, which have a synergistic effect to treat not just the disease, but any underlying condition as well as the person with the disease – That is a big difference and not one that is easily tested using standard scientific methodologies.
Using anecdotal evidence, which after all has a history of thousands of years, seems to escape my esteemed colleagues all together. Rather than trying to isolate the active ingredient(s), why not test these herbs, utilising the knowledge of professional herbalists, on patients in vivo, using the myriad of technology available to researchers and medical diagnosticians to see how and why these herbs work in living, breathing patients, rather than in a test tube or on laboratory rats and mice (which, by the way, are not humans and have a different, although some what similar, physiology to us…).
I suspect, that among the reasons for not following the above procedure is that the pharmaceutical companies are not really interested in the effects of the medicinal plants as a whole, but rather in whether they can isolate a therapeutic substance which can then be manufactured cheaply and marketed as a new drug - and of course that's where the money is…
The problem with this approach is however, that medicinal plants like Comfrey, Dandelion and other herbs usually contain hundreds if not thousands of chemical compounds that interact, yet many of which are not yet understood and cannot be manufactured. This is why the manufactured drugs, based on so-called active ingredients, often do not work or produce side effects.
Aspirin is a classic case in point. Salicylic acid is the active ingredient in Aspirin tablets, and was first isolated from the bark of the White Willow tree. It is a relatively simple compound to make synthetically, however, Aspirin is known for its ability to cause stomach irritation and in some cases ulceration of the stomach wall.
The herbal extract from the bark of the White Willow tree generally does not cause stomach irritation due to other, so called 'non-active ingredients' contained in the bark, which function to protect the lining of the stomach thereby preventing ulceration of the stomach wall.
Ask yourself, which would I choose – Side effects, or no site effects? – It's a very simple answer. Isn't it?
So why then are herbal medicines not used more commonly and why do we have pharmaceutical impostors stuffed down our throats? The answer is, that there's little or no money in herbs for the pharmaceutical companies. They, the herbs, have already been invented, they grow easily, they multiply readily and for the most part, they're freely available.
Further more, correctly prescribed and formulated herbal compounds generally resolve the health problem of the patient over a period of time, leaving no requirement to keep taking the preparation – that means no repeat sales… no ongoing prescriptions… no ongoing problem.
Pharmaceuticals on the other hand primarily aim to relieve symptoms – that means: ongoing consultations, ongoing sales, ongoing health problems – which do you think is a more profitable proposition…?
Don't get me wrong, this is not to say that all drugs are impostors or that none of the pharmaceutical drugs cure diseases or maladies – they do and some are life-preserving preparations and are without doubt invaluable. However, herbal extracts can be similarly effective, but are not promoted and are highly under-utilised.
The daily news is full of 'discoveries' of herbs found to be a possible cure of this or that, as in the example of Dandelion and its possible anti-cancer properties. The point is, that these herbs need to be investigated in the correct way. They are not just 'an active ingredient'. They mostly have hundreds of ingredients and taking one or two in isolation is not what makes medicinal plants work. In addition, rarely are herbal extracts prescribed by herbalists as singles (a preparation which utilises only one herb). Usually herbalists mix a variety of medicinal plants to make a mixture, which addresses more than just the major symptoms.
In Chinese medicine for example there is a strict order of hierarchy in any herbal prescription, which requires considerable depth of knowledge and experience on the physicians part. The fact that the primary or principle herb has active ingredients, which has a specific physiological effect, does not mean the other herbs are not necessary in the preparation. This is a fact seemingly ignored by the pharmaceutical industry in its need to manufacture new drugs that can control disease.
Knowing that medicinal plants are so effective, that these plants potentially hold the key to many diseases, are inexpensive and have proven their worth time and time again over millennia, why is it that herbal medicine is still not in the forefront of medical treatments, and is considered by many orthodox medical professionals and pharmaceutical companies as hocus-pocus…. hmmm.

About The Author

Danny and Susan Siegenthaler have extensive experience as practitioners of Chinese medicine and as medical herbalists. They both have Bachelor of Science degrees, as well as several degrees in various modalities of alternative medicine. Together they have over 40 years of combined clinical experience and have taught hundreds of students.

Their Website Natural Skin Care Products by Wildcrafted Herbal Products provides information, education and genuinely natural skin and body care as well as herbal products for everyone to enjoy – see you there.

This article was posted on January 01, 2005

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You Are What You Eat - Genetically Modified Food

You Are What You Eat - Genetically Modified Food
 by: Patty Apostolides

Whenever we sit down to eat, we assume that the foods we consume are good for us, like milk, vegetables, fruits, and grains. Well, think again. In the last decade the foods we know (corn, tomato, potato, soybean, strawberries) have drastically changed due to the introduction of genetically modified (another word is genetically engineered) organisms in 1994. Over 60% of the items on your local grocery store shelves these days are genetically modified, and these items are not labeled as such.
On the surface, these genetically modified foods look and taste similar to what we ate before 1994, but their internal structure is not the same. Their internal genetic structure has been tampered with by the process called genetic engineering. It doesn't stop there. Most of the processed foods we eat contain some genetically modified food component, like corn syrup and soy lecithin. Look at the labels. Even though they are not specifically labeled "genetically modified," if their ingredients contain a corn or soy product, chances are that they are contaminated with a genetically modified organism. Canola oil is also a genetically modified product. In addition, animal feed often contains corn products, and eventually it enters our bodies when we eat poultry, eggs, cheese, beef, etc. from animals that have been fed this genetically modified diet.
What is genetically engineered food?
Simply put, foreign genes are inserted into a plant for the purpose of either protecting the plant from insects or from frost. Since the plant cannot protect itself from the bugs or frost, why not give it a gene that does? For example, fish genes from a fish that weathers the cold has been introduced into strawberries so that they can also resist the cold. This process is not simple. For an insecticide gene to be inserted into the DNA of the plant and to be activated, extra genes are needed to trick the DNA into allowing this foreign gene to enter it. An "antibiotic resistance marker gene" and a promoter gene (cauliflower mosaic virus) are those extra genes that are inserted along with the insecticide or frost gene. For example, the most widely grown type of genetically engineered soybean, Monsanto's herbicide- resistant "Round Up Ready" soybean, contains genes from bacteria cauliflower virus, and petunia.
What does that mean for us, the consumer? This means that we are eating built-in insecticides in our foods. Genes from completely unrelated organisms such as moth, bacteria, pig, or fish have been introduced into genetically modified plants, and we are eating them. Regulatory officials have stated that these genetically modified foods are supposed to be degraded in the stomach, and thus do not cause any problem. However, this is not the case in real life. An independent study showed that a proportion of large fragments from genetically modified food were not degraded and were observed up to two hours in the digestive system. The longer these fragments don't get broken down, the more likelihood of an immune response against them. The body's immune system kicks in and the results are allergic type symptoms. It is known that allergies have increased in the past decade or so for young children. Can genetically modified foods be one of the possible reasons?
The Unknowns
Even after these foreign genes are introduced as a package into the plant gene, there is no control as to where they will be inserted into the plant's DNA. This is a random event, and often takes thousands of tries before it is successfully implanted into the plant's DNA. The actual location in which the foreign gene is inserted in the DNA is random and unknown, which makes for unreliability of the process.
It is unknown what the foreign gene will do to the makeup of the DNA in a human's body. The cauliflower prosaic virus (similar properties to Hepatitis B and AIDS virus) is inserted along with the insecticide gene as a promoter, and how do we know if that virus will not do us harm? There have been several instances when viruses previously thought to be restricted to animals have been found to jump species boundaries and affect humans also.
Reports of Health Issues with Genetically Modified Foods
In 1998, Professor Arpad Puztai of Aberdeen's Rowett Institute fed several young rats on genetically modified potatoes that carried genes from the snowdrop and jackbean for 110 days (equivalent to 10 human years). The rats suffered from slightly stunted growth and their immune systems were compromised and were therefore more likely to be vulnerable to disease.
A study done in Italy suggested that genetically modified soybean intake can influence liver cell nuclear features in young and adult mice. (Source: Malatesta M, Caporaloni C, Gavaudan S, et al "Ultrastructural Morphometrical and Immunocytochemical Analyses of Hepatocyte Nuclei from Mice Fed on Genetically Modified Soybean". Cell Structure and Function Vol. 27 (2002), No. 4 pp.173-18.)
A village of thirty-nine people living adjacent to a large field of Bt-maize (Dekalb 818 YG) on the island of Mindanao in the Philippines were stricken by a disease with respiratory, intestinal, and skin reactions, and fever (2003). These symptoms occurred when the maize was producing airborne pollen. The maize was genetically engineered to produce the insecticide called Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt). In response to Bt-toxin, IgA, IgG, and IgM antibodies were detected in their blood samples, indicating an immune reaction to GM maize pollen. When four of these villagers left the area, their symptoms subsided. As soon as they returned, the symptoms came back again.
Issues That Require Attention
Without the labeling of GM foods, we cannot possibly begin to trace any harmful effects caused by them. We don't know the long-term effect of eating these foods because there are no studies done. The FDA says that the burden of safety is on the manufacturer. Consumers need to contact their congressmen and let them know that they want genetically modified foods labeled. Until these labels are put on foods, there will not be any accountability on the part of the manufacturer. Until then, consumers can protect themselves by eating only organic foods.
Environmental issues have arisen from these genetically modified plants.
Cross pollination – contamination of fields near genetically modified crops has been witnessed (bees take the pollen and fly to another field, cross pollinating the other plants). For example, Starlink corn, a genetically modified corn, was recalled in 2001, and although it was believed to have been removed from the market, several corn products (corn tortillas) were found to be contaminated with the genetically modified Starlink corn.
Weeds – increasing. Genetically engineered plants are supposed to need less pesticides, and this was the case the first few years they were grown. However, a November 25, 2004 report released by the Northwest Science and Environmental Policy Center showed increased pesticide use by about 50 million pounds for the planting of 550 million acres of genetically engineered (GE) corn, soybeans and cotton in the United States since 1996. Many farmers have had to spray more herbicides on GE acres in order to keep up with the weeds that are becoming tougher-to-control species.
Helpful links on Genetically Modified Foods:

About The Author

Patty Apostolides is a biologist, poet, author of several articles, and author of the novel "Lipsi's Daughter." More information can be found on her website:

This article was posted on December 31, 2004

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Telepathic Communication With Animals

Telepathic Communication With Animals
 by: Nedda Wittels

Animal Communication, or telepathy with animals, is as common an occurrence in some people's lives as it is an oddity in the lives of others. Telepathy is an energetic exchange between two sentient beings for the purpose of communication. Combined with body language and sometimes vocalizations, animals use this form of communication among themselves and even across species.
Only humans in Western Civilization in the last 2500 years have rejected this form of communication. Indigenous peoples all over the planet consider messages from animal guides a natural part of life, and shamans or medicine men and women, rely on their animal helpers in their spiritual service to their communities.
Native peoples around the world consider themselves part of the "web of life". This web includes the subtle energetic pathways that allow for intuitive and psychic energy exchanges. This includes our auric field and the subtle energetic pathways known as meridians, as well as the ley lines of the Earth, who is thought of universally as our Mother, a part of us and of whom we are all a part.
Thus, shamans and other healers among native peoples expect to work with animal spirit guides. Hunters call on the spirits of the animals they hunt to ask for offerings of their physical bodies to feed the tribe. Young men and women being initiated into adulthood may expect to receive a communication or lesson from an animal.
Telepathic communication, then, is as natural as breathing. Many small children in our culture who have animals in their families communicate telepathically with them even in infancy. It is only in response to the pejorative comments of adults and older siblings, and eventually of their peers, that we either stop using our telepathic abilities or relegate them to the realm of imagination, i.e., outside reality.
Telepathy can be thought of as an expansion of intuition, which even in our modern culture is considered anathema, unless you are a top dollar CEO who is willing to admit that your best decisions are those you made based on intuition. For the rest of our society, intuition is often relegated to a place not remotely related to intelligence or sound decision-making. We live in a culture which teaches us to take pills when we are sick and ignore the subtle and not-so-subtle messages of our body telling us we need to rest and re-create itself. We rationalize that we must do this to pursue the almighty dollar. Being so out of touch with ourselves is a symptom of being out of touch with others.
Our educational system also rejects the intuitive, creative aspects of our intelligence as soon as budget cutting is required. Even in healthy economic times, we are taught to develop our logical, sequential, analytical thinking, focusing on mathematics and science as the most valued subjects, with the arts and music at the bottom of the pile.
How, then, can we restore our natural talents to include our birthright of telepathic communication? Spending time with animals and in nature is a beginning, but not sufficient. Learning to communicate telepathically requires breaking down limiting assumptions and beliefs that have caused us to reject this aspect of our Being.
Animals are spirit in physical bodies, just as humans are. The bodies they inhabit are very different in form and sensory systems from the human body, and that has a lot to do with how they experience the world. It also affects how humans and animals communicate with each other.
For example, if a dog is unhappy, he may whine or he may just look sad. He can't cry with tears as a human would and he can't speak the words to tell you that he's unhappy. In the same way, if a cat has a urinary tract problem, the cat can't tell you in words, "Hey, I'm in pain and need help." Instead, the cat may start urinating outside the litter box to let you know that something is wrong. Animals have to improvise because humans, from their perspective, are "deaf" and "dumb" to telepathic messages.
Telepathic communication includes a wide variety of vibrational frequencies that allows for full communication at many levels. As a professional Animal Communicator, I receive information in a number of ways, including mental images or pictures; physical sensations; words, phrases, and even whole sentences; knowings; intuitions; and emotions. I actually experience in some way what the animal is experiencing. To communicate the message to another human requires that I translate what I receive into spoken language, which for me is English.
While animals who live with humans often learn to understand specific words in the preferred spoken language of the human, animals are simultaneously receiving our thoughts and emotions, which we broadcast unconsciously all the time. If our thoughts are jumbled and confused because of our frenetic lifestyles and mental states, the animal may not understand the message completely.
In contrast, animals tell me that the sounds they make when communicating with other animals are usually a form of emphasis or punctuation for a telepathic message which the sound accompanies. It is natural for animal mothers to speak this way with their young and for the young to continue to use telepathy for the rest of their lives.
Today can be your moment to awaken to the idea that the animals who live with you are more than child substitutes, more than "pets" kept for our amusement or our personal companionship. All animals are, in fact, sentient beings - conscious and intelligent, with life purposes and goals. They are aware of themselves and of their situations. They are capable of feeling the entire range of emotions we so arrogantly have labeled "human". They make life choices. They often express unconditional love for the humans who are part of their families.

About The Author

Rev. Nedda Wittels, M.A., M.S., is a telepathic Animal Communicator, Spiritual Counselor, and Shamballa Master/Teacher, offering private sessions in communication and healing for humans and animals. She teaches workshops in Animal Communication, Communication with Nature, and Shamballa Multidimensional Healing. She can be reached at 860.651.5771,, and

This article was posted on December 31, 2004


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How to spot bad mole?

How to spot bad mole?
 by: Aleksandr Kavokin MD/PhD

This morning you took a bath. The warm water feels so nice during the cold winter day. There was some funny skin itching on you back. You looked in the mirror, turned this way , that way. There is small mole on your back You remember this spot had been there for years, since childhood. Did this spot get that strange itching?
Recently you have heard the news that there are more than 50000 of new melanoma cases every year. This number grows 3% a year.
What is going on? Is this small spot on you back went out of control?
Several types of skin tumors exist. Many are slow growers. Many give rare metastasis. Simple removal cure majority of skin tumors.
Melanoma brings troubles big time.
Melanos = black, oma = tumor.
You can detect melanoma by self-exam. Skin cancers show themselves much easier than any other types of cancer.
In the same time you can cure melanoma by simple surgical resection. However, catch this tumor in early stage. Late stage metastasize. Surgeon can not cut off every metastasis in your body.
There are numerous sites dedicated to melanoma self-exam. Just type in the word "melanoma" into any search engine. Follow instructions.
Fair skin people have more chances of getting melanoma. However, dark skin people develop melanoma too.
Everybody has moles. Women even use moles to charm. How to find if your mole became dangerous?
Dangerous signs include ABCD:
A- asymmetry. Suspicious mole does not look like a round or oval blot. Often, early melanoma looks rather like a blot with an odd shape.
B- borders. Borders become irregular, uneven, fuzzy. The edges of the blots become notched.
C- color. Color of normal mole should be more or less homogenous. Change in color is very suspicious . There are shades of brown, black, tan, red. Mottled color is suspicious.
D- diameter. Change in diameter is suspicious too. Mole that is bigger than 6 mm is suspicious. Everybody compares 6 mm to a pencil eraser (though few people actually use it extensively). Just to get idea about the borderline size.
Besides ABCD there could be other signs of dangerous mole:
E - enlargement and elevation over the time
Also worrisome signs include easy bleeding and erythema (redness) around the mole.
Itching and pain in the side of mole make you suspicious as well.
History of melanoma in Family should also raise suspicions.
Some skin problems look like melanoma, but are actually harmless. Anyway, do not gamble with them. Even experienced physician can not always tell if the lesion is malignant or not. It is better to be safe then sorry and check the troubling changes soon.
Some rare types of melanoma exist. Because even obvious melanomas are not always diagnosed on time, the unusual types becomes much more deadlier. Often doctor sees them too late.
Melanoma under the nails. Melanoma of mucous membranes. (Mouth, nose or guts) Amelanotic melanoma - this one is not even colored.
The treatment will be excision with margins and biopsy, but most important of course is to catch melanoma Know that the treatment depends on the thickness of the tumor and the presence of distant metastasis.
Surgeon or dermatologist cuts off the melanoma. Then, Pathologist (doctor specializing in lab diagnostics) looks the sample under microscope.
He classifies the tumor. The grade of the tumor gives the clue to the chances of your survival.
There are several classifications
Breslow classification measure the penetration of the lesion into skin by millimeters. Know that > 0.75 mm is already dangerous, but > 4 mm is wacking.
What is 4 mm. It is nothing. Right? Take a ruler and check how 1 mm looks and how 4 mm looks.
So this is why it is important to catch melanoma early.
There is also Clarks classification that measures penetration of the melanoma into the skin and other layers.
TNM classification standardizes the grading.
You can not know the grade unless you excise and measure the melanoma penetration under microscope. It is not a do-it-yourself project. Surgeon and pathologist will do it.
The time of evolvement 1-2 years.
The frequency of melanoma is increasing. It might be because of more people get sun damage. Also other reasons may play role.
Treatment of melanoma includes surgical removal, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, radiation therapy.
Keywords: Melanoma, mole, nevus, dermatology, pathology, surgeon

About The Author

Aleksandr Kavokin MD/PhD,
Aleksandr Kavokin, MD 1994 Russia, PhD 1997 Russia - Immunology and Allergy, postdoc at Cancer Center at Med U of South Carolina, postdoc at Yale - Cardiology, Molecular Medicine.

This article was posted on December 31, 2004


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Pain in the butt. How to deal with hemorrhoids?

Pain in the butt. How to deal with hemorrhoids?
 by: Aleksandr Kavokin MD/PhD

This is very sensitive area of your body. Too private. Nobody likes when something is wrong over there. However it happens.
Hemorrhoids occur practically in everyone. Though hemorrhoids cause problems in 1 out of 25 people. Mostly those are people between 45 and 65 years of age.
You find a blood on toilet tissue. Bright red blood. Ok, now what? You do not know why you bleed. It could be rectal cancer by the way. It could be hemorrhoids.
So? What are the hemorrhoids?
They look like cushions. They contain blood vessels, some muscle and elastic fibers. People often call them piles.
Not everything over there is a hemorrhoid. There could be other problems. Fissure, abscess, fistula, pruritus (itching), condylomata (sort of hanging skin caused by viral infection), viral and bacterial skin infections can happen in that, so sensitive area.
It is worth to talk to your doctor.
How would a scenario of hemorrhoids look?
A 46-year-old female presents with complaints on rectal discomfort, occasional bright red blood on toilet tissue and prolapsing tissue in of anal area. This is probably internal hemorrhoid.
Another scenario brings a patient who complains on severe rectal pain and prolapsed tissue.
The severe pain happens in external hemorrhoids. The pain follows thrombosis (thrombosis is the blood clot in your blood vessels).
There are four degrees of internal hemorrhoids.
It may be interesting for you to know because first, second and sometime third degree can be treated by banding only. Fourth degree and sometime third degree requires surgery.
Do not forget non-hemorrhoid causes of symptoms.
To check with your doctor is worthwhile because there could be other problems, including cancer or anal fissure. (By the way for anal fissure medical treatment alone may heal it in 90% of cases).
How are hemorrhoids treated?
Well first you need to understand how do hemorrhoids happen. Several reasons lead to hemorrhoids: Constipation and extra straining Chronic Diarrhea and loose stools Long sitting or standing Weight lifting Obesity Pregnancy and childbirth Inherited tendency to hemorrhoids.
So, avoid all this and you are free.
Obviously this list of reasons is too wide.
The list of measures is wide too.
Increase the fiber in your diet.
Eat more cereals, fruits, vegetables, grains, etc
Psyllium and methylcellulose are supplemental types of fiber.
Exercise, avoid long standing or sitting, don't strain, keep the anal area clean.
Increase liquids in your diet.
Use stool softeners, stool-bulking agents (not a tasty ones, but what can you do).
Treat diarrhea with anti-motility drugs and fiber.
Not every of these methods are proved scientifically. Nonetheless they are included in the standard recommendations for hemorrhoids treatment.
To treat itching or discomfort you may use suppositories, ointments, creams, and gels. You may find that all in your local pharmacy.
These products contain protectant and anesthetics (pain relievers). Local anesthetics numb the area and decrease burning and itching.
Remember that local anesthetics may cause allergy.
Analgesics (menthol, camphor) relieve pain and itching as well
Vasoconstrictors reduce swelling in the perianal area. Though they may have side effects. Better discuss with your doctor.
Protectants (kaolin, cocoa butter, lanolin, mineral oil, starch, zinc oxide or calamine, glycerin, etc) create a physical barrier to prevent contact of stool and the skin. This reduces irritation, itching, and burning.
Similarly, some agents - astringents - dry the skin. That helps to relieve burning, itching, and pain as well.
To kill or at least suppress bacteria and other organisms use antiseptics. Boric acid, phenol, resorcinol and many others can be used. Again better to discuss with your doctor or at least pharmacist. Many of these drugs are sold over-the-counter.
Corticosteroids. Corticosteroids decrease inflammation and relieve itching, but may cause skin damage. They should be used for few days only.
Sitz bath may also help in relieving the symptoms.
When those methods fail your doctor may perform one of the following:
Sclerotherapy (causes scarring of the hemorrhoid).
Rubber band ligation. The rubber band cut off blood supply and hemorrhoid heals with scarring.
Side effects of any of the treatment may be infection of fat and other tissues surrounding the anal canal, especially if patient has diabetes cancer, AIDS.
Another option - electrotherapy and infrared photocoagulation. Works the same way, cause scarring of the tissue.
Cryotherapy uses cold to cause inflammation and scarring. Practically the same, though more time consuming.
Let say your medical treatment fails. What do you do then?
Well, you go to surgeon and treat it surgically.
Operations are done in less than 10% of patients. Though it depends.
Surgical procedures include
Dilation. It is when surgeon stretches your anal sphincter.
Ligation. Often a Doppler probe helps to measures blood flow and finds the individual artery.
The doctor ties off the artery.
Sphincterotomy. It is when sphincter is partially cut. Whole idea is to reduce the pressure.
Hemorrhoidectomy. Hemorrhoidectomy makes sense for patients with third- or fourth-degree hemorrhoids. The hemorrhoids are cut out.
Stapled hemorrhoidectomy. Stapler cuts off the ring of expanded hemorrhoidal tissue.
There are different considerations why to do this and not that type of treatment. And vice versa.
There are complications (pain, difficulty urinating, bleeding several days after surgery, scarring, infection, stool incontinence). Complications happen relatively rare, but they are still there.
Better talk to you surgeon.
I hope you be OK.
You were not alone.
It looks like Napoleon Bonaparte, Carter, Hemingway, Tennyson, Lewis Carroll also were suffering from hemorrhoids.

About The Author

Aleksandr Kavokin MD/PhD,
Aleksandr Kavokin, MD 1994 Russia, PhD 1997 Russia - Immunology and Allergy, postdoc at Cancer Center at Med U of South Carolina, postdoc at Yale - Cardiology, Molecular Medicine.

This article was posted on December 31, 2004


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Quit Smoking: Why People Do Bad Things (Even When They Know They Shouldn't)

Quit Smoking: Why People Do Bad Things (Even When They Know They Shouldn't)
 by: Jill Binder

Do you do Bad Things? Even though you know you shouldn't?
It's not your fault. It really isn't. You know you should stop doing it, but no matter how much you know that, and how much you try, you just can't stop!
Everyone knows how to lose weight. Don't eat fattening foods. Exercise. Everyone knows how to give up smoking. Don't light the cigarette. Yet having this knowledge just isn't enough. Sometimes even having the desire isn't enough! Time and again I hear about people who get really close to quitting smoking. They can get all the way down to one or two cigarettes a day, but just can't give up those last two. Many even make it all the way down to zero, but the cravings, oh the cravings! They are wretched, those cravings. Most will go back to smoking within the first few days. They can cut away most of the "stuff" that keeps them glued to the cigarettes, even not be addicted to nicotine anymore(!), but there is just something deep in their core that magnetically pulls them back in, like two lovers who know they are bad for each other but just can't help themselves.
What is this thing? What is at this core?
Let me take a step back for a moment. How many adults do you know who are happy? I mean really, truly happy? Think that question is foolishness? Let me ask you this. How many people do you know who love their work? I'm talkin' jump out of bed in the morning, can't wait to start. Sadly, the percentage is very small. Why is this?
We live in an interesting quick-fix culture. People don't really have to deal with their issues. We've got: television movies shopping toys and hitting the gym
to distract us and make us feel better. Even more than that, many people's issues are quite buried. Think of dreams that were squashed when we were young. "An artist? You could never make a living at that! You should be a doctor!" People often forget what their dreams once were.
As a result, I see an awful lot of unhappy, unfulfilled people walking around. They don't know what is bothering them, they just have that gnawing feeling that there must be more. Advertisers pray on this, selling us more and more bottles and gizmos to give us that ever elusive Happiness.
True inner needs? People either: think they're impossible to fulfill are too scared and resigned to fulfill them or are so disassociated from those needs that they don't even know what they would be even if they had to guess!
All those "bad" things -- smoking, overeating, gambling, alcohol, the list goes on and on -- are easy ways to fill the void. Smokers will be able to relate to this one -- if you've just had a fight with your family, what do you do? You go for a smoke. Smoking makes it feel like the problem goes away. (I call this the "smokescreen." Har har!)
I'll let you in on a little secret--the real reason it's so hard to quit is not the nicotine. It's this void-filling. When you quit smoking (or any bad habit), you're suddenly faced with real life. All those stresses and needs that you've been avoiding? There they are, pulling at your coat tails, yelling, "Pay attention to me! Pay attention to me!" If you got in touch with your real inner needs and took baby steps to start fulfilling them, you would actually have little desire for cigarettes. It's true! I see it happen time and again in my Stop Smoking Coaching practice.
How do you do that, you ask? Here are some baby steps that you can start trying out now: Next time, instead of taking that quick fix--stop. Have a little quiet time and listen to what your insides have been trying to tell you. Try journaling -- don't edit your thoughts, just write. Some people find meditation and yoga to be great accesses. Try deep breathing. Go for a quiet, leisurely walk by yourself. Personally, I find it easiest to just start noticing where in life I seem to be avoiding things the most, or if I want something more immediate and active, doing a mindmap (a word drawing) to figure out what I'm really thinking.
For each person, the key to figuring out your needs is different. Play around with it, don't give up! You'll be glad you did!
Jill Binder is a Stop Smoking Coach with a 90 day program to show people how to quit smoking forever, with a 100% success rate. She is the author of "What's Your Smoking Type?" and has appeared on the radio on "Radioactive Women" and the newspaper Metro Toronto Today.
You can sign up for her newsletter, "YourTurn - Turn Your Weaknesses Into Your Perfect Life" at

About The Author

Jill Binder is a Stop Smoking Coach with a 90 day program to show people how to quit smoking forever, with a 100% success rate. She is the author of "What's Your Smoking Type?" and has appeared on the radio on "Radioactive Women" and the newspaper Metro Toronto Today.

You can sign up for her newsletter, "YourTurn - Turn Your Weaknesses Into Your Perfect Life" at

This article was posted on December 30, 2004


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New Hope for Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Sufferers

New Hope for Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Sufferers
 by: Deb Bromley

There are many theories with regard to the causes of chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia, many of which may be indeed touching on the truth or at least touching on an aggravator or contributor to these afflictions. Diseases in general have been growing in epidemic proportion over at least the past 20 years, especially in the United States, where our increasingly toxic environment and lifestyles have drifted further and further away from what is natural in the name of progress, technology, and profit. Chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia are no exception, the two often being experienced together, and possibly symptoms of the same disease. Many agree that having one or both of these conditions reflects a compromised immune system, but whether this has resulted from viruses or chemicals or heredity or DNA mutations or other causes is much debated. As in the question of the chicken or the egg, I think the answer lies in what came first, at least in terms of triggering the disease.
We all have unique genetic weaknesses and tendencies, but usually a disease that we may be predisposed to will not surface unless an external environmental factor triggers it. Viruses lay dormant in all of us, as do many bacteria. The body's immune system keeps them in check unless the body is damaged and becomes weak and imbalanced to the point that viruses and bacteria grow out of control and flourish, causing disease. But what external "triggering" factors came first to weaken the immune system to allow such a systemic breakdown to occur?
The answer most likely lies in how increasingly toxic and contaminated our bodies are becoming. This cumulative toxic overload is the result of the growing number of harmful chemicals we're exposed to in our everyday life -- over 10,000 in food processing and preservation alone. We eat chemically-processed foods that contain preservatives, pesticides, dyes, hormones, bleaching agents, neurotoxic artificial sweeteners, steroids, and antibiotics, drink hundreds of chemicals in our tap water, breathe in fumes from factories, are bombarded with radiation from numerous and growing sources, and chemicals are outgassed in our homes from our Teflon-coated pans to our stain-resistant carpets. We are surrounded with plastics, paints, solvents, cleaners, medications, and many other toxic chemicals, and when you mix them all together in our bodies with our own natural chemistry, as in a chemistry lab, the results can be unpredictable and potentially explosive. In addition, antibiotics that destroy good bacteria along with the bad have been dangerously overprescribed, contributing to weakened immune systems, and expensive unnatural synthetic drugs are being dispensed in record numbers that do not cure but only suppress symptoms, while causing a plethora of harmful side effects to the tune of billions of dollars for the pharmaceutical industry.
Recent studies have shown that antibiotics and chemicals can permeate cell walls and destroy, damage, or mutate mitochondria, which most claim cannot be regenerated. What are mitochondria? In short, they are the powerhouses of our bodies. They assimilate food and produce critical nutrients, but their primary function is to manufacture adenosine triphosphate (ATP), a vital component of life. ATP is believed to provide 90-95% of all cellular energy and has been found to act as a neurotransmitter extracellularly. Also, an enormous amount of ATP is required by our energy-hungry muscles. Unfortunately, the brain does not store ATP, ATP cannot be shared between organ systems, its supply is very limited, and the demand for it by the body is very high. Therefore, ATP must be constantly synthesized to provide a continuous supply of energy or an ATP-imbalance occurs, which may lead to neuronal cell deaths, chronic fatigue from lack of energy, nutritional deficiencies, and muscle weakness and pain as in fibromyalgia, among many other symptoms. ATP imbalance or poor regulation can be very dangerous – too much ATP in a few areas of the body can actually be just as damaging as too little, such as in spinal cord injuries.
Scientists have theorized that mutations in mitochondrial DNA also contribute to aging, and when the production of ATP is interrupted or stopped for any number of reasons, a cascade of free-radical damage begins. The key to chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia, and many other diseases, may lie in cellular damage by chemicals, while the road to recovery may lie in eliminating toxins that cause cellular damage and pursuing natural courses of treatment that help the body heal itself.
Although most doctors and researchers do not believe mitochondria can be repaired or regenerated, they used to say the same thing about brain cells, and that has since been disproved. The body is a miraculous creation, and if it is not abused, it has many self-healing and regenerative abilities. I came across one University of California-Berkeley research project recently where mitochondria in rats were able to be rejuvenated with large doses of acetyl-L-carnitine and alpha-lipoic acid, common natural dietary supplements, which also appeared to make the old rats more youthful. Guaifenesin has also been used successfully by fibromyalgia sufferers to help relieve pain. It is believed that guaifenesin works both by causing urinary excretion of excess uric acid, phosphate, and other substances that should have been excreted by the kidneys that have built up in the cells and tissue to the point that they depress ATP formation, and by actually reinforcing cell walls to minimize entry by toxins and further damage to the cells. (There seem to be very few all-natural products that contain guaifenesin without ephedrine or chemicals. I found one product made by Naturade called Herbal Expec that I would recommend)
After "Yuppie Flu" first surfaced in the 1980's, a few progressive doctors tried giving patients injections of adenosine monophosphate (AMP), a chemical precursor of ATP, but this was expensive, inconvenient, difficult to tolerate, and the results were very slow and gradual. Next, in the 1990's, oral ATP supplements were tried, and are still available today, but they had side effects and did not allow the body to naturally assimilate the ATP itself which makes it less targeted and effective. But more recently, there has been significant success with another precursor to ATP – D-Ribose. D-Ribose is a complex sugar with no side effects. It goes to work quickly in the body, effectively fueling the mitochondria so that additional needed ATP can be produced for many hours at a time. In particular, it increases ATP production in muscles, including the heart, therefore besides improving muscle strength and helping alleviate pain, it additionally benefits individuals with heart problems, and increases blood circulation, oxygen levels, and energy levels. Ribose formulas often include creatine, as the two are believed to work synergistically together to increase overall ATP production.
With cellular damage, and the often accompanying gut damage from ingesting chemicals, there are also often multiple nutritional deficiencies that result from poor absorption and assimilation, regardless if you think you have been eating well, therefore a potent vitamin and mineral supplement and an immune system builder is also recommended, preferably liquid sublinguals (under the tongue) to enhance absorption. Since our soil has been damaged from chemicals, and thus much of our food is lacking in vitamins and minerals, the vitamin/mineral nutritional supplement should be the one thing you take for life to maintain health even if you feel fine. For those who can afford it, a new spectroscopic test is available from Spectracell that examines white blood cells, which help protect the body and combat disease, and can pinpoint your specific and unique cellular deficiencies.
Although the natural supplements mentioned above may be extremely helpful in repairing cell damage over time, increasing energy, and may potentially help alleviate symptoms in the short-term, in order to foster long-term healing and maintenance of health, it is critical that toxins that store in fatty tissue be removed from the body, such as with binding whole grains, natural detoxifiers, and chelation, and further toxic exposure that contributes to cellular damage and other health problems be avoided. Since your body is likely chemically addicted to many substances, a natural course of treatment that involves the elimination of chemicals often results in short-term withdrawal symptoms or temporary exacerbation of symptoms where you feel worse before you feel better, but this stage passes quickly.
The more you understand what you're fighting and your options, the better armed you will be to battle it. And half the battle is knowing and eliminating what caused the disease in the first place. Although there are supplements that may help, natural steps to better health do not have to cost a fortune. There are many inexpensive dietary measures that can be taken. To learn more about the thousands of harmful toxins in our food and everyday environment and how to avoid them, how to bind toxins and remove them from the body, how to treat symptoms of disease naturally, and how to adopt a non-toxic chemical-free diet and natural lifestyle that will help your body heal itself, please visit the NatureGem website at From the home page, you can also link to a copy of this article with active links to helpful resources.

About The Author

Deb Bromley is a former science and technology researcher and the President of NatureGem Nontoxic Living (, an organization devoted to promoting awareness of toxins in our food and environment that can cause disease, and providing access to nutrition information, natural remedies, and alternative health resources. She was formerly a researcher at the NASA Lewis Research Center, a professional staff member of Cleveland State University, and a Corning research contractor. Additionally, she was the operations manager for the Battelle Memorial Institute Midwest Technology Transfer Center, and an editor for a major Cleveland-area regional newspaper. Ms. Bromley studied environmental health and behavioral science at the New York Institute of Technology and is the founder of The Legacy Health Foundation, a non-profit hunger initiative created to provide chemical-free healing foods to underserved populations.

This article was posted on December 30, 2004

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Quit Trying To Quit Smoking

Quit Trying To Quit Smoking
 by: William Molitor

When new clients come in to see me the first thing I want to know from them is if they are ready to quit trying to quit smoking. Most people that come into my office intend to use hypnosis to stop an unwanted habit such as smoking. They also have tried other methods before deciding on hypnosis. They have failed in the past and one of the reasons that I attribute to those failures is that they where "trying". The truly successful individuals that leave my office as non-smokers are the ones that are finished trying to quit and have decided to become a non-smoker. After all, they where a non-smoker long before they became a smoker. We can not accomplish anything if all we are doing is trying.
To make this concept understandable you must first understand what the word try means. By definition the word try means the following:
1. Make an effort to do or accomplish (something); attempt: tried to ski.
2. To taste, sample, or otherwise test in order to determine strength, effect, worth, or desirability: Try this casserole. Try the door.
As you can see there is nothing about the word try that equals success. I do not want my clients to try, I want them to succeed. In order for this to occur they must have in their mind the right words for success. They must have in their minds the right commands to achieve their desired outcome. Once you get your mind hearing and understanding the words that truly reflect your desired outcome you can succeed.
Most clients after having a hypnotic session to become a non smoker will often say that if they knew it would be this easy they would have quit years ago. I will normally tell them that if they where truly ready to quit years ago it would have been that easy then also. One thing that is important to know about hypnosis is that it is not mind control. When you are in hypnosis you are in control and in a heightened state of awareness. You can not be made to do anything against your will or that you do not want to do. The effectiveness of a hypnotic session rides squarely on the shoulders of the individual being hypnotised. If the words "I'm going to try to quit", as apposed to, "I'm going to quit", are in their mind then the outcome will be a try, an attempt or effort, not a commitment to succeed. This is why I want all my clients to quit trying to quit smoking….and do it!
William Molitor CH, Director, Tri-State Hypnosis Center

About The Author

William Molitor CH, Director, Tri-State Hypnosis Center NGH certified Master Hypnotis, Transformational speaker

This article was posted on December 21, 2004


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University Lad & Penis Size

University Lad & Penis Size
 by: Oneil Wilson

99% of men are not satisfied with their penis. That 1% are a pretty rare breed. It's also a proven fact that women find bigger penises more satisfying. With statistics like that who can blame men wanting to take action? Thomas Bland tells us his story…..
"Being at lad at university is a pretty tough job, in fact being a student is full stop. The drinking, clubbing, girls-enough to wear the healthiest lad out. I was 20 when I was about to start my third year at Cardiff University, studying Media- to all I seemed to have the world at my door. Being a virgin was my only problem, well frustration really, in fact it was a major frustration"
"It's not the fact that I am ugly and repulsive- well I don't think I am, at least I've never been told I am. The fact is that I lacked serious confidence, now that I have been told before. I lacked faith in myself and in my ability to perform."
"I am 5'10" - which isn't extremely tall or small, just average. But I was never satisfied with my penis size. However I looked at it, I just simply wasn't satisfied with it- I would go as far as to say I was really embarrassed."
"I wasn't like your normal 13 year old- measuring yourself at every chance to check out that all important growth. I didn't need to- I knew all to well- there simply wasn't any at all."
"By the time I was about to start my 3rd year at Uni. I decided enough was enough. University is meant to be the time of your life- opportunities that simply couldn't be passed up whatever the situation. Where you achieve anything- but I hadn't achieved anything of such yet and it was becoming more and more of a problem, especially in the bedroom department. Now don't get me wrong I have kissed girls- loads in fact and done other deeds to pleasure them with miraculous results, but everytime things went a bit further and action began happening downstairs I'd find myself panicking and running a mile. I'd simply make my excuses and get of there- quick. By this time my confidence was so low I was beginning to feel like a freak, so I decided the only was forward was to take action."
"The problem was I simply didn't know where to start. I began to conduct some research into penis and enlargement and began to get fairly freaked out by the results. At first Corrective Surgery looked like the only available option. But I hit dead ends- the surgery was only available outside the UK as far as I could see and was also very expensive- I was in no position to pay for this, I was up to my eyes in debt and my student loan had been drunk down the local along time ago. The recovery period also seemed very long- which I couldn't deal with- I needed to be up on my feet as soon as possible. Using weights were another method I also came across- but they looked so painful and the damage done seemed to be more apparent than the good done. It simply just wasn't natural- at all."
"I was just about to give up when I came across the ProSolution Pill System. They simply enlarge your penis in a natural tried and tested formula- It seemed simple- impossible?"
"For my money I received a complete guide of everything that I needed to know to carry out the system included with their "free optional exercises" was the ProSolution capsules. The entire system was really easy to follow and to STICK TO."
"After I'd completed a few weeks I actually measured my penis for the first time ever- I was shocked at the improvement- I had gained at least 1/2 an inch. But the most important difference was the girth- my penis simply looked thicker and more healthy- I simply couldn't believe it- it was this early progress that kept me going. The results have been fantastic. By the time I had completed the pills the improvements to my penis were fantastic- and more than I could ever have wished for. As it stands I think I have gained 2.7 inches in length and the thickness of my penis has improved by 1.5 inches. "
"I would recommend their system to everyone. The programme has changed my life around. 2 years on I have now just got engaged to the love of my life- I am so happy- with my sex life and myself."
"Anyone who has doubts about themselves should invest- I'm telling you- it's well worth it!"

About The Author

Oneil Wilson
Natural Penis Enlargement Pills Articles and Products - Natural Penis Enlargement Resource - Learn about natural Penis Enlargement for FREE

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This article was posted on December 20, 2004

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Suicide: In Memory

Suicide: In Memory
 by: Kay Kopit

Debra was radiant in her scarlet dress wrapped tautly over her swollen belly. Proudly she gave each guest a tour of the nursery, decorated in yellows and greens with love and care, as she awaited the birth of her first child. I commented to her friend Carol, "What a perfect day for a shower. The weather is beautiful." Carol and I were hosting this special event for Debra on April 10, 1988. Her baby was due the middle of May. We knew, as well as all her family and friends, she longed to be a mother. She had been planning her family since high school. As I drove the half hour drive home, I reflected what a superb day this had been. Debra was healthy and her dreams were coming true. I felt extremely close to her and was grateful I could honor her with a party.
Around 10:00 p.m. that evening the telephone rang. I was startled. The phone ringing after 9:00 p.m. has always bothered me. I chose to let the answering machine pick it up and I screened the call. At this time of my life I was doing commercial voice-overs. My message was an upbeat rhythmical ditty, which might have been construed by some as annoying and commercial. I heard my sister-in-law say in a somber tone of voice, "Kay, you must get rid of that message." I picked up. "John is dead. He did it. He shot himself." I was paralyzed with the weight of her words! I don't think I have ever felt worse emotional pain in all of my life. My brother, age 45, my only sibling, had killed himself.
I had already experienced death. My mother, father and stepfather all had died from complications due to alcoholism. Although I do believe that drug abuse and alcoholism are a form of suicide, this was different! The depth of my grief was indescribable. I do the best I can with thoughts of John, but to this day I can't dwell on him for too long because it still hurts so badly. He was my baby brother, a devoted father, and a good soul who grew up with major distortions in his home life. Because I understood the nature of his disease, I had empathy for him and his decision.
John was troubled, beginning in his youth. He was the child who "acted out" his frustrations with the imbalanced life we led. In grade school he tormented other children, not with violence, but with incessant teasing. He craved love and attention and went out of his way to concoct methods of getting it. There was an underlying loneliness, which I could detect. In high school, my brother was sick and bed ridden for several weeks. He had epilepsy (which was under control with drugs) and thrombophlebitis (blood clots.) It was recommended by his physician that he quit playing football a sport he loved. During his illness he plotted his future. He wanted to be a millionaire. He thought the path to a successful life was money. As soon as he was able, he began studying and working at a variety of sales jobs to accomplish his goals. He had a gift for marketing and a charismatic personality, which enabled him to influence sales, whatever the product, and also impress women. He became quite popular, was well dressed and handsome. From outward appearances it looked like John would succeed.
His businesses grew rapidly; he married and started a family. I truly believe he wanted to flourish in relationships as much as work. But, he was crippled. He didn't know how. He loved being a father and did the best he could for his two young girls. They remember him fondly. On his tombstone it reads, "Greatest Dad." They were 10 and 11 when he died.
Although John didn't drink because of his epilepsy, he was a compulsive gambler. This disease accelerated during the early 1980's. Before his death, he was heavily in debt. Although none of our family knew, he was also addicted to "the businessman's cocktail; cocaine," and had become a heavy user. It didn't take long for him to slide into deep depression. His world began to deteriorate and he was in trouble with the law for the first time in his life.
I lived away from John, in different states, for many years. I wasn't aware of the seriousness of his addiction. Actually, no one was because my brother was expert at keeping secrets. The culmination of his disease was with his arrest for selling cocaine. The fact that he would go to prison exacerbated his sadness. He felt he could not survive incarceration. The fear, shame, and humiliation consumed him. He tried an overdose of pills and was unsuccessful. I didn't find out about this until weeks after the attempt. I begged John to go to NA, Al-Anon, or any 12-step program. He wouldn't confront the truth and remained in denial. I used myself as an example because; after all, we shared the same family background; all this to no avail. He actually tried again a second time, but a friend thwarted his efforts. This put him in Intensive Care for several weeks. It was there that I spoke with him for the last time. He said, "I wish I had spent more time with you; I love you Kay." The day he left the hospital, he was determined not to fail, and chose a gun. A precious life was over.
We were different in many ways, John and I. He didn't believe in God. He did not feel the guidance of a Higher Power and he did not have faith in the divinity of Love.
Several years before my brother's death, I, too, reached the level of psychological depression to want to end my life. This event is detailed in my DVD, "I Survived: One Woman's Journey of Self-Healing and Transformation." I thought about it, but instead of acting on it, I reached out to Suicide Prevention and was saved by a voice on the telephone. A gentle man listened to my crying and enveloped me with understanding. The day I reached bottom, I knew I was dying. But, I heard the voice of God, the Brain of the Universe. I didn't give up. My transformation is documented in the article, "I Survived."
Debra and her family were loving and supportive when John died. She tried to help me come to grips with my sorrow. I had no idea that she herself was beginning the throes of addiction. It wasn't obvious. Debra was consumed with being a new mother and she excelled at the role. She seemed to handle the myriad jobs of motherhood without flinching. What no one knew was her reliance on wine to combat stress. She hid it well. There was no reason to suspect codependency or compulsive drinking, because Debra's parents are not alcoholic or drug users. Although not as common as when one grows up in a dysfunctional family, she was steadily becoming a closet drinker.
I spent time with Debra after her first child, a beautiful girl, was born. I was in awe of her parenting skills. She seemed to always be confident with her decisions. Intuitively she was a loving parent and she had a great sense of humor. She and I spent much time on the phone conversing playfully. During these conversations Debra always wanted to know what I thought and felt about codependency, alcoholism and recovery. She would approach these subjects with curiosity. Whenever I would try to go deeper and ask her what she felt about these issues, she couldn't seem to answer. She would get the glazed look that I have seen so many times in my life; denial. But I didn't get it, for the only time I saw her drink was socially and never to excess. Having spent the majority of my years in a sick, unhealthy environment, I didn't suspect that Debra was in that place at all.
By the time her second child arrived, three years after the death of my brother, we were like sisters. She invited me to come to the hospital to await the birth of her son. I expected to be in the waiting room for hours. Instead, the nurse invited me to go to the labor room. It wasn't long before we moved to the delivery room where I joined her husband to witness this miracle. The energy in the room was electrifying. Debra gave birth naturally, without drugs, courageously. This was one of the most elevated spiritual experiences I have ever had. I am grateful to have shared it with my good friend.
The 1990's proved to be quite challenging for Debra. Her husband was transferred several times with his job and she was called upon to relocate her family. This was painful for her and by the time of her last move to Washington State in the late 90's her alcoholism had progressed dramatically. Her husband and children were living with a different person. But, all the rest of us, her friends in California, had no idea that she was sick.
All I knew, she was seeing a counselor for depression and I was happy for her. What I didn't know, she wasn't being honest about her drinking and the therapist had prescribed anti-depressants. She always sounded groggy and "out of it" on the phone. I began to worry and wonder what was "real" when we spoke. I found out much later, she mixed alcohol and prescription drugs for months. She was on a down hill slide which ended with a DUI. Finally, she was forced to get help. She entered a Residential Treatment Program ordered by the court. It wasn't long after she was sober; she relapsed and once again returned to an In-House Recovery Program. After that stint she was clean. The Debra I talked with on the phone was my long lost friend. I thought if anyone could make it, she would be the one. I was wrong. On September 5, 2002, she took her own life.
What has helped me reconcile Debra's death is that she communicates often with me through my dreams. They are quite real. She answers questions that I have, and generally leaves me feeling empowered by her presence. For those of us left behind, the effects of suicide can be devastating. I strongly urge grief counseling; it is never too late.
We need to talk about our feelings of loss. If it isn't possible to see a therapist, open up to a friend who will listen. There is someone who cares.
If you are thinking about killing yourself, you will feel like you are going crazy. You will be numb to the world. When temptation is looming in front of you, turn your back! Reach out; ask for help! Let us know how much you are suffering. We don't want to lose you! I know it isn't easy being here, but when you cross over to the other side you will be continuing your soul's journey. What you haven't healed here, you will need to work on there. Life is a continuum. It never ends. What we learn while in the body accelerates our spiritual growth. Don't give up!
I believe we are all one, all a part of each other. This is why I feel such pain from the loss of my brother and Debra. We are each other's accumulated sorrows as well as our cumulative joys. When someone commits suicide, there is an open sore in our collective psyche. It can be healed. Each time one of us breaks the cycle and recovers; we help the whole of humanity. Each day, in every way, I thank God for the gift of Life. What about you?
For more information on Kay Kopit:
Rhonda Boudreaux

About The Author

Kay Kopit, accomplished artist, actor, writer, speaker and gifted teacher.

Kay Kopit grew up in the Midwest town of Clayton, Missouri. At the age of sixteen she choreographed as well as designed and made costumes for several high school productions. Here she found her passion for art and theatre.

Kay attended the University of Missouri where she received a B.S. in Art Education and M.A. in Painting and Ceramics. While in college she continued her interest in theater production succeeding in choreography and costume design for several major productions, including "Carnival" and "Once Upon a Mattress." After graduate school she taught Life Drawing, Design, and Ceramics at the very prestigious Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri.

In 1969 Kay was inspired to move to the East or West Coast. By the flip of a coin (literally) she decided to move to the East Coast where she made Boston, Massachusetts her home. She was immediately offered a position teaching art at Lexington High School. After several successful years teaching Kay was determined to pursue a career in the arts and theatre and moved to California.

Kay moved to San Francisco where she trained with Wendell Phillips of the well-known Stagegroup Theatre. For several years she studied acting, dance, public speaking, and playwriting with reputable names such as Elizabeth Huddle of A.C.T., Peter Layton of The Drama Studio of London at Berkeley, and Sue Walden of the Improvisational Workshop.

Kay had continued success in her acting and modeling career. She appeared in many national commercials including: Dreyer's Grand Ice Cream, Hunt Wesson Foods, Totino's Pizza, Shaklee, and many more. She acted as the principal spokesperson for several Industrial Films including: Chevron, Fireman's Fund, Zenger Miller Productions and American Protective Services. Her print work was extensive including: Ketchum Advertising, Safeway, and Emporium-Capwell.

Kay's good business sense and devotion to teaching inspired her to open her own pottery in Marin County, California. She founded and operated, "Clay In Mind," a ceramic school and gallery in San Rafael. This venture led to "Clay In Mind II" a manufacturing plant in San Diego, California. After many productive years the opportunity to sell came and Kay felt it was a good time to do so.

Most recently, Kay is the writer and producer of a documentary of her life story, "I Survived: One Woman's Journey of Self-Healing and Transformation" which covers 15 years of living with an alcoholic. Although Kay was successful in her life, behind closed doors she endured pain, shame and emotional maiming. Her story is being told to help others overcome the debilitating disease of codependency.

Kay is now living an amazing life with her husband Bryan of 17 years (who just happens to be 19 years her junior.) To complete their family they adopted a daughter at birth when Kay was 54 years of age. Besides being a mother and wife she continues with her love of painting, writing, teaching and speaking on the subject of codependency. Her passion is not only the arts but to help people through her inspirational story. Her courage, stamina, and faith have given her direction and the gift of helping give others hope. Kay has several published articles and writing a monthly column for Recovery Times.

Read more about Kay Kopit at

Contact: Rhonda Boudreaux
Kay Kopit Productions

This article was posted on December 18, 2004


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