Whether it’s curing a throat tickle, resolving your headache in minutes or experiencing supersonic hearing, these body tricks are proven methods of fooling your body to achieve a desired result, whether that’s relieving pain or just having fun.
When you were 9, playing your armpit was a cool trick. Now, as an adult, you can still appreciate a good body-based feat, especially if it serves as a health remedy. Take that tickle in your throat: It’s not worth gagging over. Here’s a better way to scratch your itch: Scratch your ear. “When the nerves in the ear are stimulated, it creates a reflex in the throat that can cause a muscle spasm,” says Scott Schaffer, M.D., president of an ear, nose, and throat specialty center in Gibbsboro, New Jersey. “This spasm relieves the tickle.”
If you’re stuck chatting up a mumbler at a cocktail party, lean in with your right ear. It’s better than your left at following the rapid rhythms of speech, according to researchers at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine. If, on the other hand, you’re trying to identify that song playing softly in the elevator, turn your left ear toward the sound. The left ear is better at picking up music tones.
Nerves getting the best of you. Take a deep breath and spash cold water on your face. This triggers the mammalian diving reflex that is genetically in all animals including humans. The lower temperature of the water and you holding your breath also causes your body to think it’s diving into cold water. This reflex allows you to use oxygen more efficiently.
Need to pee? No bathroom nearby? Fantasize about what ever turns you on. Thinking about sex and arousing fantasies preoccupies your brain, so you won’t feel as much discomfort, says Larry Lipshultz, M.D., chief of male reproductive medicine at the Baylor College of Medicine.
Love donating blood but hate the needle prick? German researchers have discovered that coughing during a needle stick can lessen the pain. According to Taras Usichenko, author of a study on the phenomenon, the trick causes a sudden, temporary rise in pressure in the chest and spinal canal, inhibiting the pain-conducting structures of the spinal cord.
Those huge health supplements are sometimes a pain to swallow. Want to swallow more than one at a time without gagging? Try this trick to get them down: take a drink of water, and tilt your head forward instead of backward. The capsule should float, and will be at the back of your throat, ready to swallow.
Forget Sudafed. Here’s an easier, quicker, and cheaper remedy to relieve sinus pressure: Alternate thrusting your tongue against the roof of your mouth, then pressing between your eyebrows with one finger. This causes the vomer bone, which runs through the nasal passages to the mouth, to rock back and forth, says Lisa DeStefano, D.O., an assistant professor at the Michigan State University college of osteopathic medicine. The motion loosens congestion; after 20 seconds, you’ll feel your sinuses start to drain.
Worried that chili will repeat on you tonight? Try this preventive remedy: “Sleep on your left side,” says Anthony A. Starpoli, M.D., a New York City gastroenterologist and assistant professor of medicine at New York Medical College. Studies have shown that patients who sleep on their left sides are less likely to suffer from acid reflux. The esophagus and stomach connect at an angle. When you sleep on your right, the stomach is higher than the esophagus, allowing food and stomach acid to slide up your throat. When you’re on your left, the stomach is lower than the esophagus, so gravity’s in your favor.
Just rub ice on the back of your hand, on the V-shaped webbed area between your thumb and index finger. A Canadian study found that this technique reduces toothache pain by as much as 50 percent compared with using no ice. The nerve pathways at the base of that V stimulate an area of the brain that blocks pain signals from the face and hands.
Feeling dizzy? Put your hand on something stable. The part of your ear responsible for balance–the cupula– floats in a fluid of the same density as blood. “As alcohol dilutes blood in the cupula, the cupula becomes less dense and rises,” says Dr. Schaffer. This confuses your brain. The tactile input from a stable object gives the brain a second opinion, and you feel more in balance. Because the nerves in the hand are so sensitive, this works better than the conventional foot-on-the-floor wisdom.
If you’re like most people, when you run, you exhale as your right foot hits the ground. This puts downward pressure on your liver (which lives on your right side), which then tugs at the diaphragm and creates a side stitch, according to The Doctors Book of Home Remedies for Men. The fix: Exhale as your left foot strikes the ground.
Put some cotton on your upper gums–just behind that small dent below your nose–and press against it, hard. “Most bleeds come from the front of the septum, the cartilage wall that divides the nose,” says Peter Desmarais, M.D., an ear, nose, and throat specialist at Entabeni Hospital, in Durban, South Africa. “Pressing here helps stop them.”
Press your tongue flat against the roof of your mouth, covering as much as you can. “Since the nerves in the roof of your mouth get extremely cold, your body thinks your brain is freezing, too,” says Abo. “In compensating, it overheats, causing an ice-cream headache.” The more pressure you apply to the roof of your mouth, the faster your headache will subside.
If your hand falls asleep while you’re driving or sitting in an odd position, rock your head from side to side. It’ll painlessly banish your pins and needles in less than a minute, says Dr. DeStefano. A tingly hand or arm is often the result of compression in the bundle of nerves in your neck; loosening your neck muscles releases the pressure. Compressed nerves lower in the body govern the feet, so stand up and walk around if they fail you.
“If you’re giving a speech the next day, review it before falling asleep,” says Candi Heimgartner, an instructor of biological sciences at the University of Idaho. Since most memory consolidation happens during sleep, anything you read right before bed is more likely to be encoded as long-term memory.
The next time you are about to reach for some pills to get rid of your headache, use your thumb and forefinger and pinch down on the muscle on the web of your hand (thumb on the back of your hand and forefinger underneath) and press for 2 minutes. Repeat. Most headaches and migraines will ease after just 4 minutes. This shiatsu point addresses headaches by dispersing stagnant Ki (i.e. blocked energy) and moving blood in the head, neck, and other parts of the body.
Your late-night eating could be giving you more than bad dreams: It may be wrecking your health.
The verdict is finally in on late-night snacking: After decades of scientific back and forth, new findings from researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania suggests that restricting your eating to earlier in the day could be one of the most important healthy dieting tips you follow.
The ongoing study, reported in a Penn University news release, found that compared to shutting down the kitchen in the early evening, raiding the fridge after hours negatively impacts your weight, fat metabolism, and markers for heart disease and diabetes.
For two months, researchers asked nine healthy adults to eat three meals and two snacks daily between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. The volunteers took a couple of weeks off from the study, then returned to follow a delayed-eating pattern that limited their meals and snacks between the hours of noon and 11 p.m.
Analyzing changes in the participants’ weight, metabolism and calorie burn, the researchers found that when the group ate later in the day, their weight, insulin, fasting glucose, cholesterol, and triglyceride levels worsened. Also troubling was the volunteers hormonal shifts: The later eating shift led to delayed spikes in the appetite-stimulating hormone ghrelin, slowing the release of leptin, the hormone that signals fullness; the opposite was true for the daytime eating plan. The implication is that eating earlier in the day actually helps prevent eating late at night—a habit that appears to be really bad for you!
“We know from our sleep-loss studies that when you’re sleep deprived, it negatively affects weight and metabolism in part due to late-night eating, but now these early findings, which control for sleep, give a more comprehensive picture of the benefits of eating earlier in the day,” says the study’s lead author Namni Goel, PhD. “Eating later can promote a negative profile of weight, energy, and hormone markers—such as higher glucose and insulin, which are implicated in diabetes, and cholesterol and triglycerides, which are linked with cardiovascular problems and other health conditions.” (And when it comes to what you eat, make sure you ditch these foods to keep your heart healthy.)
People sit a lot. Like … a lot, a lot.
Over the past hundred years, humans have gone from easily walking those 10,000 coveted steps every day to barely hitting 1,000 even with a Fitbit on their wrist.
The tragic realization is that with all this sitting and the lack of walking, we’ve lost one of our prime assets: our bums.
But not every bum is alike, and each comes with its own set of problems and perks.
So read over this article, find out which category you fall into and bring back that booty!
The square or “H”-shaped bum comes from either high hip bones or a bit of extra fat in the love handle region. This can make your derriere look flat rather than giving it the coveted round look. Unfortunately, it could take a lot of squats to get that curve.
The round or “O”-shaped bum means there is more fat storage in the upper parts of your glutes.
Luckily, this gives the bum a perky appearance, so it’s pretty easy to get that curved shape with a few glute-strengthening moves.
Just like the shape, the heart-shaped bum is usually fullest at the bottom and tapers out at the top. This can mean more fat is stored in the upper thighs. While this type of bum is one of the more coveted ones, as women age and lose estrogen, the fat that’s stored around the glutes slowly but surely moves to the mid-section.
“V” For Very Low Estrogen
This is the bum commonly seen in older women once they’ve started losing estrogen. As with the heart shape, the fat storage that used to be in the bum has moved to the abdomen or mid-section. Without hard work, this bum can be prone to sagging.
Modern science has gotten us to the point of utilizing various chemicals to cure nearly everything, but back in the day, people were using home remedies to fix some common bodily issues. Surprisingly, a lot of these actually treat issues!
From spider bites to chapped lips, we’ve listed 10 DIY remedies that have actually been proven to work.
This one easily might be one of the weirdest things we’ve read about, but multiple sites note that this actually works! Take a slice of a potato, place it on the bite, and hold it with medical tape. You’ll need to change that every few hours until the bite subsides.
Vodka was used back in the day to help with foot odor. Just soak your feet into vodka and wipe them with a towel afterwards. Rubbing alcohol also apparently works great just as well!
Yogurt is apparently great for preventing bad breath. Probiotics in the yogurt fight the bacteria that causes bad breath. Prevention.com also notes gargling with lemon juice can also help fight bad breath.
Have a problem with motion sickness? Try some olives. Olives contain tannins, a compound that helps dry out the mouth and ease queasiness.
If you’ve got hiccups that just won’t quit, consider taking a teaspoon of sugar for relief. Supposedly, the dry granules stimulate and help resets the nerves that are making your diaphram spasm.
This one makes a lot of sense, and we’re definitely going to try this one out. Just simply rub some oil onto your lips when they are chapped. It should feel instantaneously better, even if it takes a few days for it to fix itself naturally. Use olive oil
Black tea also contains tannins, which deflates and tightens the bags under eyes. Put the teabag
Frozen ginger chips can help with nausea. To make these chips, infuse fresh ginger in hot water, and then strain and freeze water in ice cube trays. Suck on these ice chips throughout the day to ease any issues with nausea.
A lot of our headaches can stem from us subconsciously clenching our jaws through the day. To treat this headache, place a pencil in between your teeth to relax your jaw.
If you’re trying to settle your coughing, think about snacking on dark chocolate. It contains a compound called theobromine that’s reportedly better than codeine in suppressing coughs, without the drowsiness attached!
Of course, with all of the advances in science, medicine will be massively important in our lives. However, there are little things we can do to ease everyday pains and annoyances, and all of these are tried and true methods of using noninvasive materials to help. Good luck!
Most of us have dealt with acne during puberty, or maybe even after that. You probably wanted to pop or pick them in order to remove them, but don’t do that! Learn more about acne and learn how to get rid of it more appropriately!
Zits are annoying and they tend to pop up at the absolute worst time. Before you try to pop them, though, check out this video for some better ways to get rid of acne.
This video from SciShow explains how zits are formed when bacteria collect in the pores of your skin and create tiny infections. While popping a zit is an attractive short term solution, this can spread the infection to the surrounding area of your skin. That’s likely to make the overall problem worse.
Instead, the video suggests that acne treatments that prevent bacterial growth and lower inflammation. You can use over the counter topical treatments on your skin to help reduce acne overall. In severe cases of acne, you may want to look into prescription treatments.
You think you’re warding off disease, but if you don’t spend enough time washing your hands in the correct manner you’re fooling yourself.
Use the simple guide below to wash your hands like a doctor.
January has been the month of the cold that would not die at the McKay household. First one half of the family got sick, then the other, then the first half again. It was a downright pandemic around here. Productivity, morale, and my gains — my poor, poor gains! — have suffered greatly.
It’s gotten me thinking about how to better handle getting sick in the future, and how to prevent getting sick in the first place. When it comes to the latter, proper and regular hand-washing is one of the most important weapons in your cold and flu-fighting arsenal.
In the past I’ve admittedly been a short and sloppy washer. And I’m not alone; studies have shown that only 5% of people wash their hands correctly.
So we talked to Bryan Canterbury, ER doctor at Newton-Wellesley Hospital in Newton, MA, to get his tips on how to wash thoroughly like a right-old medical professional. His doctor-endorsed guide is above.
According to the CDC, you should wash your hands:
- Before, during, and after preparing food
- Before eating food
- Before and after caring for someone who is sick
- Before and after treating a cut or wound
- After using the toilet
- After changing diapers or cleaning up a child who has used the toilet
- After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing
- After touching an animal, animal feed, or animal waste
- After handling pet food or pet treats
- After touching garbage
Skip the antibacterial soap; it’s not only no more effective at getting rid of germs than regular soap, it may lead to the development of resistant strains of bacteria (i.e., the “super bug”). The antibacterial label also tends to make people careless about washing their hands the right way, figuring the soap will take care of the germs itself, which isn’t the case.
Hand sanitizer will work in a pinch — use a big glob, make sure it’s at least 60% alcohol, and rub it over every surface of your hands. Sanitizer’s not a good choice when you’ve got actual grime on your hands, and it doesn’t kill all germs, but it’s almost as effective as hand washing. It won’t lead to super bug-dom, either; hand sanitizer breaks down bacteria in a different way than the anti-microbials in antibacterial soap do. Here’s how Dr. Canterbury recommends using sanitizer:
“In the hospital, we use hand-sanitizer in-out of each patient room. But we are told to soap-and-water after the bathroom and before/after meals and when hands are visibly dirty — and I think that’s great minimum criteria throughout the day no matter your work/life setting; more if possible to prevent catching a cold, flu, pneumonia — or worse.”
There you go, how to wash (or sanitize) your hands like a doc. Until next time, keep your noses, and your hands clean.
A series of intensive gym visits or a summer fitness program can have great short-term effects for your health and well-being, but to make meaningful long-term improvements you may be better off integrating small changes to your daily routine. Adjusting the way you eat, work and rest — rather than concentrating on a fad diet or short-lived burst of workouts — can be the best way to sustain your new healthy outlook, so staying fit becomes a matter of fine-tuning your lifestyle, from breakfast until bedtime.
In fact, even before you prepare that healthy morning meal (ideally one quarter protein, one quarter carbs and the rest fruit or veg) you can set the tone for the day by getting up early to meditate or exercise. It has been shown that early-risers are more pro-active in general — although whether they get up because they’re pro-active, or are pro-active because they’re early-risers, is still in question.
If you have one of those jobs that puts you behind a desk for the best hours of the day, it’s time to fight back: our bodies weren’t designed to sit staring at a computer screen for eight hours in a row, so mix things up by taking an hourly stroll around the office (boss permitting), taking an ‘active’ lunch break and stretch those muscles while you’re working.
Hillary told the FBI she could no longer recall things after her head injury.
Watch her right eye go screwy in this video shot after the fall:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Hillary Clinton told the FBI she did not recall all the briefings she received on handling sensitive information as she made the transition from her post as U.S. secretary of state, due to a concussion suffered in 2012, according to a report released Friday.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation released a summary of the July 2 interview it conducted with the Democratic presidential candidate, as well as other details of its investigation into her use of a private email server while heading the State Department.
Clinton, who is challenging Republican Donald Trump for the White House in the Nov. 8 election, has been dogged by the fallout from her private email account for more than a year.
Republicans have repeatedly attacked Clinton over the issue, helping drive opinion polls that show many U.S. voters doubt her trustworthiness.
Clinton has said that in hindsight she regretted using a private email system while secretary of state.
Said the report, “Clinton said she received no instructions or direction regarding the preservation or production of records from (the) State (Department) during the transition out of her role as Secretary of State in 2013.
“However, in December of 2012, Clinton suffered a concussion and then around the New Year had a blood clot (in her head). Based on her doctor’s advice, she could only work at State for a few hours a day and could not recall every briefing she received,” the report said.
According to the report, Clinton told the FBI that she did not set up a private email server to sidestep the law requiring her to keep her business communications a matter of public record.
Clinton has claimed it was public knowledge to many State Department employees that she was using a private server because they received emails from her email domain.
But State Department employees interviewed by the FBI said many emails from Clinton appeared to be from “H” and did not show her private email domain.
The documents also show that Clinton contacted former Secretary of State Colin Powell in 2009 to ask about his use of a personal BlackBerry phone.
In his reply to Clinton via email, Powell told Clinton to “be very careful” because the work-related emails she sent on her BlackBerry could become public record.
“I got around it all by not saying much and not using systems that captured the data,” Powell said.
The FBI released its report on Friday afternoon before the Labor Day holiday weekend, a time many Americans are preparing to travel.
Great article! These plants have been used worldwide for centuries.
When it comes to herbal remedies, many of us are familiar with the benefits of Echinacea or purple cone flower as an antibiotic, willow bark as a pain killer and aloe as a topical anesthetic and treatment for skin conditions. But that’s common knowledge compared to the insights and treatments that Native American medicine men discovered and used.
Native American medicine men developed a wheel very similar to the yin/yang of Asian medicine. The use of herbal remedies and other alternative forms of treatment was the cutting-edge medicine of their day. This was a holistic approach to medical treatment that relied heavily on plants and their unique benefits.
What follows is list of indigenous plants, trees, fruits and flowers unique to North America that have surprising benefits as defined by Native American tribes. If and when times are tough, it might be good to keep some of these ancient cures in mind. They also are good for everyday needs when you consider how effective some of them can be.
1. Alfalfa: Relieves digestion and is used to aid blood clotting. Contemporary uses included treatment of arthritis, bladder and kidney conditions and bone strength. Enhances the immune system.
2. Aloe: A cactus-like plant. The thick leaves can be squeezed to extrude a thick sap that can be used to treat burns, insect bites and wounds.
3. Aspen: The inner bark or xylem is used in a tea to treat fever, coughs and pain. It contains salicin, which also is found in willow trees and is the foundation ingredient for aspirin.
4. Bee pollen: When mixed with food it can boost energy, aid digestion and enhance the immune system. If you’re allergic to bee stings you will most likely be allergic to bee pollen.
5. Beeswax: Used as a salve for burns and insect bites, including bee stings. Intended to only be used externally.
6. Blackberry: The root, bark and leaves when crushed and infused in a tea are used to treat diarrhea, reduce inflammation and stimulate the metabolism. As a gargle it treats sore throats, mouth ulcers and inflammation of the gums.
7. Black Raspberry: The roots of this plant are crushed and used as a tea or boiled and chewed to relieve coughs, diarrhea and general intestinal distress.
8. Buckwheat: The seeds are used in soups and as porridge to lower blood pressure, help with blood clotting and relieve diarrhea.
9. Cayenne: The pods are used as a pain reliever when taken with food or drunk in a tea. Also used to threat arthritis and digestive distress. It is sometimes applied to wounds as a powder to increase blood flow and act as an antiseptic and anesthetic to numb the pain.
10. Chamomile: The leaves and flowers are used as a tea to treat intestinal problems and nausea.
11. Chokecherry: Considered by Native American tribes as an all-purpose medicinal treatment, the berries were pitted, dried and crushed into a tea or a poultice to treat a variety of ailments. These include coughs, colds, flu, nausea, inflammation and diarrhea. As a salve or poultice it is used to treat burns and wounds. The pit of the chokecherry – much like apple seeds – are poisonous in high concentrations. Be sure to pit the cherries if you’re considering this for any use.
12. Echinacea: Also known as purple coneflower, this is a classic Native American medicine that is used to strengthen the immune system, fight infections and fever. It also is used as an antiseptic and general treatment for colds, coughs and flu.
13. Eucalyptus: The oil from the leaves and roots is a common treatment when infused in a tea to treat coughs, sore-throat, flu and fever. It’s used to this day as an ingredient in cough drops.
14. Fennel: A plant with a licorice flavor, this is used in a tea or chewed to relieve coughs, sore-throat, aid digestion, offer relief to diarrhea and was a general treatment for colds. It also is used as a poultice for eye relief and headaches.
15. Feverfew: Used to this day as a natural relief for fever and headaches – including severe headaches like migraines – it also can be used for digestive problems, asthma and muscle and joint pains.
16. Feverwort: Another fever remedy that also is used for general pain, itching and joint stiffness. It can be ingested as a tea or chewed, or crushed to a paste as a salve or poultice.
17. Ginger root: Another super plant in Native American medicine, the root was crushed and consumed with food, as a tea or a salve or poultice. Known to this day for its ability to aid digestive health, it also is anti-inflammatory, aids circulation and can relieve colds, coughs and flu, in addition to bronchitis and joint pain.
18. Ginseng: This is another contemporary herb that has a history that goes back across cultures for millennia. The roots were used by Native Americans as a food additive, a tea and a poultice to treat fatigue, boost energy, enhance the immune system and help with overall liver and lung function. The leaves and stems also were used, but the root has the most concentration of active ingredients.
19. Goldenrod: Commonly thought of today as a source of allergies and sneezing, it was actually considered another all-in-one medicine by Native Americans. As a tea, an addition to food and a topical salve, it is used to treat conditions from bronchitis and chest congestion to colds, flu, inflammation, sore throats and as an antiseptic for cuts and abrasions.
20. Honeysuckle: The berries, stems, flowers and leaves are used to topically treat bee stings and skin infections. As a tea, it is used to treat colds, headaches and sore throat. It also has anti-inflammatory properties.
21. Hops: As a tea it is used to treat digestive problems and often mixed with other herbs or plants, such as aloe, to soothe muscles. It also is used to soothe toothaches and sore throat.
22. Licorice: Roots and leaves can be used for coughs, colds, sore throats. The root also can be chewed to relieve toothaches.
23. Mullein: As an infusion in tea or added to a salad or other food, this is a plant that has been used by Native Americans to treat inflammation, coughs and congestion and general lung afflictions. It is quite common and you probably have it growing in your backyard or somewhere close.
24. Passion flower: The leaves and roots are used to make a tea to treat anxiety and muscle pain. A poultice for injuries to the skin such as burns, insect bites and boils also can be made from passion flower.
25. Red clover: It grows everywhere and the flowers, leaves and roots are usually infused in a tea or are used to top food. It is used to manage inflammation, improve circulation and treat respiratory conditions.
26. Rose hip: This is the red to orange berry that is the fruit of wild roses. It is already known to be a massive source of vitamin C and when eaten whole, crushed into a tea or added to food it is used to treat colds and coughs, intestinal distress, as an antiseptic and to treat inflammation.
27. Rosemary: A member of the pine family and used in food and as a tea to treat muscle pain, improve circulation and as a general cleanser for the metabolism.
28. Sage: A far-reaching shrub across much of North America, it is a natural insect repellent and can be used for the standard list of digestive disorders, colds and sore throat.
29. Spearmint: Used consistently by Native American tribes for treatment of coughs, colds, respiratory distress and as a cure for diarrhea and a stimulant for blood circulation.
30. Valerian: The root as an infusion in a tea relieves muscle aches, pain and is said to have a calming effect.
31. White Pine: Ubiquitous and the needles and the inner bark can be infused in a tea. Used as a standard treatment for respiratory distress and chest congestion.