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For people who suffer from various psychiatric and neurological conditions, brain stimulation has become an increasingly important treatment option in the recent decades.

Deep Brain Stimulation

Deep Brain Stimulation

Brain simulation techniques can be divided into two broad categories, invasive and noninvasive. Both of them work by targeting specific sites in the brain to adjust the overall brain activity. Among the most well-known invasive techniques is the deep brain stimulation (DBS) which requires a brain surgery and is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This process is typically used for treated Parkinson's disease and this process requires an electrode to be inserted in the brain. Among the noninvasive techniques is the transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) which can be administered from outside the head. This treatment is currently approved for treating depression.

Brain stimulation has resulted in dramatic benefits to patients with such disorders, which has motivated researchers to test if it can be useful in treated patients suffering from other diseases. The problem is that doctors have been unable to pinpoint which are the ideal sites to administer simulation in a given patient for a given condition.

A new study led by investigators at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) suggest that brain networks which consists of the interconnected pathways that link brain circuits to one another can assist in selection of ideal spot for brain stimulation therapies.

Michael D. Fox, MD, PhD, First author of the study, an investigator in the Berenson-Allen Center for Noninvasive Brain Stimulation and in the Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders Center at BIDMC remarked that although different types of brain stimulation are currently applied in different locations, it has been found that the targets used to treat the same disease are nodes in the same connected brain network. This can have a direct implication on how brain stimulations are administered to treat diseases.

For example, in order use brain stimulation to treat Parkinson’s disease or tremor an electrode need to be inserted deep in the brain. Getting the same effect with noninvasive stimulation is difficult, as the spot is deep in the brain. However, by looking at the brain’s network connectivity, sites can be identified on the surface of the brain that is connected with the deep spot site. Hence, that deep spot can also be stimulated noninvasively.

For this study Fox's team conducted a large-scale literature search to find out all neurological and psychiatric diseases where brain stimulation via both invasive and non-invasive techniques had shown improvement. The search found 14 such conditions namely addiction, Alzheimer’s disease, anorexia, depression, dystonia, epilepsy, essential tremor, gait dysfunction, Huntington’s disease, minimally conscious state, obsessive compulsive disorder, pain, Parkinson disease and Tourette syndrome. In the next step, they listed the stimulation sites, both deep in the brain or on the surface of the brain that was found to have been effective for the treatment of each of the 14 diseases.

In order to test the hypothesis that the various stimulation sites in the brain are different spots within the same brain network, Fox's team used a data base of functional MRI images and a technique that enabled them to see correlations in spontaneous brain activity. These correlations helped the investigators in creating a map of connections from deep brain stimulation sites to the surface of the brain. When this map was compared to sites for noninvasive brain stimulation on the brain surface, the two matched.

The study suggest that understanding the brain networks can help in understanding why brain stimulation works and how these therapies can be improved by identifying the best place to stimulate the brain for a given patient suffering from a given disease. These findings also suggest that resting-state functional connectivity can be useful for translating therapy between treatment modalities, optimizing treatment and identifying new stimulation targets.

References

http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2014-09/bidm-srn092514.php

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/09/140929153935.htm

Complementary Reading

If you are thinking about giving up alcohol and want to get rid of this addiction, but at the same time you are also worried about what will happen to you if you give it up, then let’s see what happens when you give up alcohol.

You will sleep more soundly

Once you give up alcohol, you will be able to sleep more soundly. When you drink before that, it will increase alpha wave patterns in your brain and as a result of that you will be awake but resting. As a result of that you will have disrupted sleep. Alcohol also screws with sleep quality after the initial period and the sleep will not be able to refresh you in the morning. If you give up alcohol, the sleep quality will improve and as a result of that you will get are feeling more refreshed and sharp. You will also have improved mood, concentration and mental sharpness.

Will have new sugar cravings

Alcohol boosts levels of dopamine in the brain, which is known as the reward chemical because of which you feel pleasure feelings. The same thing is done by sugar. So if you give up alcohol, it is likely that you will have new sugar cravings. Instead of alcohol, you will consume sweets to get the same pleasures you were getting from alcohol.

Better complexion

After you stop drinking, you will find that your skin is looking and feeling more hydrated. Alcohol is a diuretic and as a result of that you need to urinate more. It will also decrease your body’s production of antidiuretic hormone. This hormone helps in reabsorption of water. If your body has less water, it will have a parched looking skin. You may suffer from different skin conditions like dandruff, rosacea, eczema etc. All these skin conditions will make your skin look unkempt and rough.

You will eat less

If you stop having alcohol, you will also start eating less. Alcohol is considered as one of the biggest drivers of excess food consumption. When you consume alcohol, it heightens your senses and you will become more sensitive to smell of food. So, you will consume more food.

Risk of cancer will go down

Once you stop drinking, the risk of cancer in your case will go down dramatically. Alcohol has been linked to an increased risk for cancer of the liver, mouth, colon, breast and rectum. The more you drink, the more is the risk.

You will lose weight

Once you stop drinking alcohol, you will start losing weight. Alcohol can increase your daily calorie consumption even when you do not realize it. When you drink, you tend to consume more calories in the form of different types of drinks and beverages. When you stop drinking, you will be able to cut those extra calories. You will see changes in your weight even without doing anything.

More money

Since you will be spending less amount of money on drinks, you are likely to have more money in your hand. Drinking can be costly and the cost can go up when you go to a pub or a bar. Once you stop drinking you still have those monies with you which you otherwise would have spent on drinks. You will be surprised to see how much money you have been standing and now you have in your hand after a month. It can really be an eye opening exercise which will motivate you to progress on your journey to stop drinking forever and save more money.

References

1. How To Give Up Alcohol
2. Quit Alcoholism
3. Self-help strategies for quitting drinking

When people want to build strength, they use different types of tools and techniques. However, they forget that without the right strategies building strength is very difficult. You need the right strategies to build more strength within a short time.

Let’s know about if you strategies to build strength.

The big four

If you want to build more strength, you will need to use the “big four.” The big four includes squat, deadlifts, bench press and shoulder press. These are the best strength building exercises and you should include them in your workout. Focus on these four and then include the other exercises that you need to build more strength. Both the pulling and pushing exercises are important for you and you should include them in your workout.

Keep it simple

Instead of trying to make it complex by varying the reps, lifting time, rep speed and other variables, you can always keep your exercise and workout simple. Those variations may be very good for advanced lifters and bodybuilders but they may be very confusing for a basic or intermediate person. You need to focus on raising and lowering weights in a controlled manner. How much weight you are going to use will be decided by your present level. You will need to keep adding more and more weight as you progress but if you keep it simple it will be easier for you to follow and easier to do.

Use barbells

Many experts believe that if you use barbells, it will give you more strength. They advocate at least initially using the barbells instead of dumbbells. However, it will again depend on your present level and your coach. If possible use barbells for the “big four” and see how much benefit you’re getting. Using barbells have some advantages because you can load a lot of weight and since you need to lift heavy to increase your strength, it is more advantageous for you. However, do not neglect the bodyweight exercises and dumbbell exercises.

Write it down

This is another important strategy in increasing your strength. You will need to maintain a log and write down the exercises that you are performing each and every day. This is a very good strategy because it will help you to see what you are doing and what is working for you. It will also help you to see if you are missing out something and if the present workout is not providing new the optimum results that is possible to get with the times and effort you have devoted. From the log, you’ll be able to see how many reps you have completed with a certain weight for a particular exercise. Now you need to try to improve that number.

Balance your training

This is another strategy which will help you to build the maximum strength possible. You will need to balance your training. If you are doing something for one side of your body, you must also do the same for the other side. This is a rule that you will need to follow all the time. It will help you to stay away from injury and muscle imbalances. Let’s take an example. If you are performing chest exercises, it should be balanced with back training lifts. If you are doing squats, it should be balanced with Romanian deadlifts. However, you don’t have to do the balancing exercise on the same day but you can do it on a different day of the same make. This is a formula you cannot forget because you will need to use it all the time.

References

1. Mitch Muller’s Mass Construction
2. Resistance training is medicine: effects of strength training on health
3. Strength training for older adults

5

Losing weight after pregnancy and delivery becomes a very difficult task for many women. Weight gain, extra fat and flab is very normal after pregnancy and delivery.

However, it is possible to lose weight if you really want to do that. The following tips will help you to lose weight after pregnancy.

Eat regular meals

Even though someone might advise you or you may feel that eating less and skipping meals will help you to reduce weight. It's not true. It may lead to opposite results. If you are not eating right as a new mom when you have too much of stress, both stress and not eating enough can lead to weight rise issues. You need to eat a healthy and balanced diet throughout the day. You can control the portion size but you should not skip any meals.

Smaller portion size

Instead of three big meals, you can go for five small meals spread throughout the day. The portions of these meals should be smaller. If you are feeling heavy after the meal, it is not small enough for you. If you eat five meals in a day, it means you are not hungry at any point of time. When you control the portion size, it will ensure that you are not overeating, because it will lead to overweight.

Choose low-calorie foods

If you are a new mom and you are trying to lose weight, you will need to choose the low-calorie foods available. As a new mom, you will need lots of nutrition so that he can quickly come back to your healthier self. You also need good nutrition because you need to produce enough milk for your baby. Choose the super foods available. You will not only help you with the necessary energy, they will also fight the possibility of fat deposits. You need to eat foods high in omega-3 fatty acids, protein, calcium and fibre. Such foods will include salmon, sardines, lean meat, tuna, chicken, eggs, legumes, beans, yogurt and whole-grain foods. Choosing such a diet will definitely help you to lose weight after delivery.

Drink more water

Water is very important for you when you are trying to lose weight. You need at least 8 to 10 glasses of water every day as this water will help you to flush out all toxins from your body. Drinking water will also eliminate the possibilities of dehydration. It will improve your metabolism, which will help you to manage your weight. Besides water, you can drink other liquids like milkshakes, soups, smoothies, stews, fresh juices and others.

Regular exercise

With the proper guidance from your doctor and fitness experts, you can start exercising regularly to lose weight. It is very important for you to include some form of exercise in your daily life if you want to lose those extra kilos, flabs and fats which are now present in your body. Talking to your doctor and the fitness expert is important because as a new mom and after delivery, you may need special type of exercises and may need to avoid some exercises for some time. You can always start with basic and simple exercises. Walking, jogging, aerobics, swimming, yoga and other such similar exercises will not harming, rather they will benefit you both physically and mentally.

Get the necessary sleep

Even though as a new mom, it may be difficult to catch the necessary sleeping hours, you will have to find some ways to ensure that you are sleeping for the record amount of time. If you are sleep deprived, it may result in weight gain.

References

1. 6 Week Pregnancy Weight Loss
2. Losing weight after pregnancy
3. Childbearing and Obesity in Women

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Natural weight loss is the most recommended way to go about it. There is no shortcut when it comes to losing weight; you have to invest the time and effort to get it done. You probably have read blogs that encourage you to use some drugs that will help you lose weight in a short span. Such information is misleading and could get you to adopt weight loss solutions that could eventually cause problems with your health. To lose weight naturally, you should tweak your lifestyle and include some supplements like the one mentioned in this Natures Trim Garcinia Product Review.

 

Here are some of the lifestyle tweaks you should make to lose weight naturally.

 

Set a realistic goal

The first mistake people make is to set unrealistic goals and then when they are not able to achieve them they get frustrated. Don't set the bar too high when starting as this could discourage you from going about your weight loss journey. For example, you cannot say you want to lose 5 kilograms in two weeks as this is by far not realistic. The process of losing weight is gradual and is more like a battle so you have to fight to achieve your goals.

 

Start with changing your diet

Your diet is the biggest contributor to weight gain and to lose weight successfully, you must watch what you eat.

 

There are few things you might do that will help you eat healthier:

 

  • Cut back on sugar. You consume sugar in different forms including through cakes, pastry, sweet treats, beverages, and cookies. Look at the amount of sugar you consume and strive to cut down on foods that contain high amounts of sugar.

 

  • Consume vegetables in plenty. Increase your consumption of vegetables and lower consumption of carbs. Vegetables are low in calories and will get you to feel full longer, which cannot be said about carbs.

 

  • Eat more fruits. Fruits give you dietary fiber, minerals, and vitamins that are useful in flushing out toxins from the body. They improve digestion and help you to lose weight as they are a good way to keep pangs at bay. Replace all those beverages with fruits and stock your fridge with

 

Fruits that are high in fiber.

Avoid fried food. Many fried foods don't add any nutritional value and contain many calories.

Say no to processed foods. It sounds like too much, but you also should omit processed foods from your diet as they also offer many calories but have little nutritional significance.

 

Exercise

Besides eating well, you also need to get active. You will not lose weight while seated at home. Create a work out plan that will help you exercise often, and this does not have to be on daily basis. Exercising helps you to burn calories and improves metabolism, which helps you to lose weight naturally.

 

Losing weight is an important part of staying healthy and many people dream about achieving that perfect body. However, due to failure to follow the right weight loss schedule, you will see that a lot of people don't achieve their goals. To lose weight naturally, you don't need any magic, but you need to observe your nutrition and come up with a workout plan. Be patient and don't give up as this is a hilly task that requires persistence.

If you want to become more powerful physically, there are some things that you can do. You will need a definite structure to become more powerful. Let’s find out what you can do so that you can become physically more powerful.

A training program

First of all, you will need a training program. If you do not plan, how can we achieve your dream of becoming more powerful. First decide what your objectives are and then plan to achieve them. It may not be possible for you to create the program yourself. In that case, you need to consult a fitness professional for creation of the training program.

Visualize

If you can visualize something, it is possible to achieve that. The same thing is true in case of bodybuilding and increasing your power, stamina and strength. You will need to visualize that you are successful in achieving your objectives. You will also need to visualize every rep. Whenever you are training, your hundred percent focus should be on the exercises. For success, you will need to give 100% effort. Half-hearted efforts only get you half results. You need to visualize that you are completing each rep strongly. Then only you will be able to complete the rep even when your muscles are screaming out at you to stop.

Lift heavy

If you want to become stronger than you are, it is very important that you start lifting heavy. This is a prerequisite of becoming stronger than you were. Lifting heavy is like stimuli to your body and only when you provide the stimuli, your body will start to grow. The stimuli should be beyond the present level of fitness. You will need to continuously increase the weights you’re lifting. When you lift heavy, it will break down your muscle fibers and during the remodeling process, it will create stronger and bigger muscles. You will need 3 to 5 sets of 5 to 8 reps exercises for increasing your power and stamina.

Vary your workouts

This is another important strategy to become physically stronger. If you keep doing the same work out, your body will gain resistance against it and you will not get the benefit that you expected. It is important to keep changing your workouts so that your body can continuously and consistently adapt to it. It is possible to vary types, and intensity levels of different workouts. Your body you will need to keep guessing if it has two grow stronger. You can consistently change your workout and incorporate a variety of training styles and equipment so that your body cannot get accustomed to the workouts you are performing. Do not always follow the rule of performing 8 to 12 repetitions of the same exercises for different body parts. Use different equipment, change your intensity levels, change the speed, change the exercise, change the order and change other things of the workouts you performing.

Rest enough

You need to understand that you need enough rest to grow stronger and bigger. If you want to build more strength, rest is very important for you. Rest is important because you need to give your body ample recovery time. If you are not getting enough rest, it is not possible for you to grow stronger and bigger even though you are exercising each and every day and doing everything that you need to do. For the same muscle group, you need to provide at least 48 hours between resistance training sessions.

When you follow these tips, your desire to become stronger and bigger will be fulfilled faster than you expect.

References

1. Unapologetically Powerful
2. Resistance training is medicine: effects of strength training on health
3. Strength training for older adults

If you are blushing for no reason and at the wrong time, you need to control that. However, controlling your blushing may not be totally in your hand if you do not know how you can manage a blushing.

Let’s find out how you can stop blushing.

Direct your blood flow

With your imagination it is possible to control your blood flow. Experts say that if you daily just for five minutes imagine heating your hands around an open fire, it’ll be easier for you to direct more lard into your hands. If you are in a situation when you blush, you can use this technique to flow more blood to your hands and that can stop you from blushing.

Rehearse staying cool

If you rehearse staying cool, it can help you to stop blushing. Preparation can help you to decide the response in a specific situation. If you prepare for the events which make you feel nervous and make you blush, it’ll be easier for you to handle yourself better in actual situations. It is possible to imagine such upcoming events and learn to stay relaxed during such events. You can imagine seeing yourself completely calm and cool. This technique is effective because it will send a strong signal to your unconscious and subconscious mind to stay calm and cool in such situations. After some preparation, it will become a habit and then it will become so easy for you.

There are different techniques to use it, self hypnosis may be one of them. Creative imagination may be another technique which will help you to imagine yourself controlling the situation and yourself perfectly well.

Stop feeling responsible

If you learn how to stop feeling responsible for blushing, that will help you to stop blushing in some situations which make you uncomfortable. You feel responsible for blushing but actually the responses generated by your unconscious mind. You may not have so much control on your unconscious mind as much control you have on your conscious mind. If you understand your conscious and unconscious processes and then make the response a conscious one in those situations, you’ll be able to control your blushing. If blushing is caused by your unconscious mind, you do not have complete control over it and so you should not blame yourself for blushing. However, it is possible to control the responses and you can learn that by practicing such control.

Be open about it

If you blush, instead of trying to hide it, openly accept it. We often blush more because we feel ashamed or embarrassed at certain situations but other people may not blush into situations. We blush because we have a fear of being seen differently from how we want to be perceived. So, you don’t have to put on a mask and try to be somebody else. If you’re blushing, take it as it and don’t be ashamed of it. Instead of that, take it sportingly. Make a joke about it. Let other people laugh at you and you’ll laugh with them. At that moment, it will become at trivial thing and it will not be able to bother you about what other people will think about you. In some formal situations, this may not be appropriate but in most of the cases this is a strategy that you can use to stop blushing and feeling embarrassed. If you can stop worrying about what other people will think of you, handling blushing in different situations will become much easier for you.

References

1. How To Stop Blushing – Audio Book
2. Skin blushing/flushing
3. Blushing and flushing