This time of year I get very stressed out. Part of the reason is that I detest shopping for gifts. I would rather give cash but it seems so impersonal. (Of course no one complains about getting money and they never try to return it but.....) So I try to discover unique ways to not only help myself but also find ways to spread the joy and mellowness around. So I found a great place to chill and relax and it also offers gift certificates! Spring Thyme NY is a spa and wellness center in lower Manhattan that has soup to nuts services to ease any restive soul. Here is their spiel -
Spring Thyme is a colorful and welcoming oasis of calm in the Financial District. The extensive menu of spa services features facials, soothing massages, body treatments, and waxing. But Spring Thyme isn't just another day spa-it's also a center for healing, where experts in Eastern medicine offer acupuncture and customized herbal remedies. You can also get gift certificates (.... hint hint.)
There are many foods and spices out there that seem to have powerful healing properties. The following article from Revelries newsletter talks up Tumeric which is a spice most commonly found in Indian cuisine. Here is the article in its entirety:
"They call it the spice of life," says P. Murali Doraiswamy of Duke University, commenting on the potential of turmeric, a common ingredient of Indian curries, to combat arthritis, Alzheimer's and cancer, reports Kathleen Fackelmann in USA Today (1/8/07). In fact, "doctors trained in Ayurvedic medicine, a traditional medical system in India," have used "turmeric to treat inflammatory diseases such as arthritis" for centuries. Western researchers are now arriving at similar conclusions, as a new study published in a journal called "Arthritis & Rheumatism" reveals that turmeric, when injected into rats "almost completely prevented the onset of arthritis."
Not only that, but "rates of Alzheimer's in India are about four times lower than in the USA," according to Gregory Cole of UCLA. It's believed that "curcumin" is the "powerful substance" in turmeric "that might protect the brain from damage that leads to Alzheimer's." A "test-tube study" by UCLA researchers at UCLA in October "showed that curcumin could help clear the human brain of toxic protein deposits thought to cause the memory loss and confusion of Alzheimer's." In addition: "A study of more than 1,000 older men in Singapore last year found that those who ate lots of curry-spiced food did better on memory tests than those who rarely ate the spice." Bharat Aggarwal of the University of Texas-Houston meanwhile advises that it's too early to conclude that curry is a cure for cancer, but says evidence is mounting.
"The curcumin in curry seems to shut down genes that trigger the development and spread of breast cancer" in animals. "And a preliminary human study suggests curcumin supplements might -- in a handful of cases -- be able to stabilize pancreatic cancer ... Epidemiology studies in humans also have linked frequent use of turmeric spice to lower rates of breast, prostate and colon cancer," according to Dr. Aggarwal. It's possible to buy OTC supplements that contain curcumin, but Alamelu Vairavan, author of "Healthy South Indian Cooking" suggests giving Indian food a try. And Darci Jayne, who started eating Indian food once or twice a week to help her arthritis, noticed an additional benefit -- her joints not only felt better but she also lost weight, finding that a hearty Indian meal made her less prone to nibbling on late-night snacks.
My new year's resolution now includes - eat more curry!
Coke and Nestle seem to have developed a carbonated soft drink which is derived from green tea that actually helps you lose weight. At least that is the claim.... They say that it increases your metabolism and thus burns calories. Read the Ad Age article announcing its launch.
They call it "calorie deficient" (as opposed to, lets say, Coca Cola which is loaded with sugary calories). This miracle drink is called Enviga and apparantly it has no more caffine that a cup of coffee and provides 20% of the daily value of calcium. Coke has done a study and found that 3 cans will burn 60 to 100 calories. Yes, it does sound nifty but I am skeptical. Why not just drink water (or green tea) and eat celery?
This is a dictionary of Body Language - all actions, terms and what they mean. So when they say yes but their body language says no, no, no, you will know, know, know. There is also a new book on the market which defines itself as the "definitive guide to body language". The book is called The Way We Move and has been reviewed in The New York Times Book Review . An intro to the review is certainly engaging: "We may have landed a man on the moon ... but deep down in ... we’re still hairy, barely bipedal chimpanzee cousins trying to make it through the day while protecting our vital organs from attack. This at least is the conclusion I drew from this ... informative, often amusing, ... encyclopedia of body language.
An example from the book -
Stumbled upon an interesting website called Haunt World which is a friendly little site that links all of us on the "earth plane" to those on the "spirit plane". It lists all houses across the U.S. that are haunted.
Billed as the "biggest haunt finder on the internet", this handy site can plug you into not only haunted houses but also groups that are interested in such happenings.
Happy haunting folks!