Healthy Living

Your Epidermis is Showing!


Your skin is your body's first line of defense from external injury. It protects you from infectious organisms and environmental stresses, and helps you maintain your body temperature. An average adult's skin weighs about 9 pounds, and has a surface area of around 20 square feet, making the skin the body's largest organ.

What to Do When You Have the Flu


We all dread those telltale symptoms that tell us our body is under attack from unseen invaders. The fever, the coughing and a nose that resembles Niagara Falls in its relentless running, are all signs that you probably have been caught by the flu.

How do you identify the flu? Is there really anything we can do to make us feel better and lessen the time we spend being miserable? Read on.

What Makes Lyme Disease Tick


After a winter spent indoors, many of us look forward to the warmth of spring and summer, and the opportunity to spend time with nature. Along with the flowers of spring, animals that have hidden during the cold months reappear.

One emerging creature that is best avoided is the black-legged (formerly deer) tick, which transmits Lyme disease. Rare in the winter months, Lyme disease becomes more common in May, June, and July. Your state's Cooperative Extension Service can help you pinpoint Lyme disease season in your geographic area.

Top Five Natural Health Books You Should Have on Your Shelf


Every family has a reference shelf. On ours you'll find the phone book, the almanacs for 1997 and 2001 (the years the girls were born--a family tradition on John's side), a thesaurus, a dictionary, some foreign language dictionaries, two different versions of the Bible (I need to look up the odd reference now and again), an atlas, and the AA Big Book.

It's also where we keep our family health references. Here are five books that every home should have on its reference shelf, plus one that should be in the kitchen:

Things That Make Bumps in the Night


Very few people have skin as smooth as the proverbial baby's bottom. Most of us have at least a few lumps, bumps or spots on our skin. We're going to talk about three common skin ailments: Warts, skin tags and moles.

The Case for Chocolate


It may be hard to believe but I went without chocolate once for nine months. I was pregnant and determined to eat only "healthy" foods. My diet consisted of organic fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes, with nary a chocolate bar in sight. The morning sickness (which, by the way, is all-day sickness) made quitting cold turkey seem fairly easy until it wore off four months into the pregnancy and the cravings began. I soon learned that while my house was a chocolate-free zone, out in the real world temptation was everywhere.

Summer Tonics


I've always loved reading about seasonal traditions, for some reason--maybe because in American life we have so few, and eventually they become nothing but another excuse for a big sale (Presidents Day, anyone?). In that same vein, I've always loved reading about seasonal tonics, drinks and food given to fortify the body for the change of weather.

Six "Ifs" of Dehydration


It is going to be 102 here in Portland today, which is far, far too hot. And many parts of the country are suffering under the same heat wave, which means that dehydration warnings are in effect. Here are my six "ifs" of dehydration:

Relief for Common Pregnancy Discomforts


Pregnancy ain't easy. Oh sure, there's your friend--we all have one--who sails through the nine months smiling, bouncy and glowing and can't wait to do it again. She's never felt better in her life. But most of us are not that woman.

Natural Ways to Boost Your Fertility


Do you dream of hearing the pitter-patter of little feet toddling around your living room? Are you planning to become a mommy soon? The odds are in your favor: 84% of women under thirty-five who are trying to conceive will get pregnant within the first year.

While news reports about infertility can be frightening, the majority of women will conceive without difficulty. However, if you want to increase your chances of becoming pregnant, there are some dietary and behavioural changes you can make that may boost your fertility.


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