brain health

  1. Laughter really is the best medicine

    A chuckle a day keeps the doctor away

    Ever have one of those days? The neighbor's dog won't stop barking... someone is parked in your space... and a bill arrives marked "Past Due" even though you KNOW you've paid it.

    When life's stresses get you wound up tighter than a banjo string, you don't need some Big Pharma happy pill or a dangerous muscle relaxer.

    What you DO need is a good laugh.

    A new study from Loma Linda University in California has found that a good, deep belly laugh produces the same relaxing effect on your brain as a full mediation session! Thirty-one research volunteers were shown videos that were either amusing, spiritual, or distressing (maybe an Obama campaign video?).

    Turns out funny videos produced the same healing gamma waves your brain generates when you meditate.

    And that's not just good news for you -- it's FANTASTIC news for me. Because let me tell you something -- if you ever find me lying on the floor humming, I'm not meditating. I'm having a stroke.

    New Age healing has never really been my thing. But if I can relax and give my brain a workout by watching a few Archie Bunker re-runs, sign me up!

    The truth is, the way you handle stress has an enormous impact on your health. A poor stress response can make you fat, trigger heart disease and can even cause cancer!

    And the mainstream doesn't have any answers for you -- but the Smothers Brothers might. So the next time you're feeling stressed, pop in a DVD of your favorite comedy show and put your feet up. You may be adding years to your life one chuckle at a time.

  2. Cocoa vs. fluoride

    Cocoa-based toothpaste works better than fluoride

    Who needs fluoride when you've got cocoa?

    Yes, cocoa -- the main ingredient in chocolate. On its own, cocoa is a powerful protector of both the brain and heart. And now, new research shows how a compound inside cocoa can protect and strengthen teeth better than brain-rotting, cancer-causing, bone-cracking fluoride.

    In just one week of twice-a-day brushing, a fluoride-free toothpaste containing the cocoa compound theobromine was able to repair damage to sensitive teeth. And in just a few days, it managed to completely seal up dentinal tubules, according to the study.

    That's the part of the tooth that gets exposed after years of wear and tear, leaving you with sensitive and even painful teeth -- but the cocoa-paste managed to not only close it up, but it did so far better than several leading fluoride-based toothpastes.

    Now, I'm thrilled to hear about fluoride-free options for dental care. Fluoride is actually a toxic waste byproduct that can make you dumber (which is why the authorities LOVE to put it in water) and has been linked to a long list of major diseases.

    And for all that risk, it's not even very good at protecting teeth. In fact, it could actually DAMAGE your teeth.

    That said, the new study was funded by the makers of the cocoa-powered toothpaste, so you have to take it with a grain of salt (or a hunk of chocolate if you prefer).

    Plus, the cocoa toothpaste sure ain't cheap -- and that's if you can even find it at all.

    So let me give you a better option -- a proven way to protect your teeth for just pennies a day: baking soda and hydrogen peroxide.

    Use a small amount of each to form a paste, and then work it into your teeth and gums (you don't even need a toothbrush). Rinse with the peroxide, don't forget to floss and you'll have the cleanest, strongest, whitest teeth in town.

  3. Soda can cause brain damage

    Soda can damage proteins in the brain, specifically the proteins that play a role in Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, schizophrenia and even cancer.
  4. Party for your health

    Men who go out twice a week with friends are healthier than men who don't, according to the latest research.
  5. How to stay sharp in your senior years

    Seniors who learn new things and take up new hobbies stay sharper than seniors who don't, according to a new study.
  6. Fish oil 'drug' falls short

    The feds have rejected the expansion of a fish oil 'drug.' For once, the feds got it right.
  7. How sleep protects the brain

    Your brain cleans itself up during sleep -- which could be why poor sleep habits can lead to dementia.
  8. Diabetes will cause your brain to shrink

    Diabetics have shrinking brains -- a key warning sign of cognitive decline and dementia.
  9. Low vitamin D in new Alzheimer's link

    Low levels of the sunshine vitamin can damage the brain, with two new studies linking vitamin D deficiencies to cognitive decline.
  10. Carbs in new dementia link

    Seniors who eat the most carbs have a 400 percent higher risk of cognitive impairment -- while those who eat the most fats and proteins have a lower risk.

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