New Treatment for Rett Syndrome Suggests the Disorder is Reversible-Best weight loss program

DNA Molecule
Rett syndrome is a very rare autistic-like disorder that is not detectable at birth (in most cases signs of it develop at 6 to 18 months of age) and occurs in about 1 in 10,000 to 1 in 15,000 females, as 90% of the children who have Rett syndrome are girls. Most boys diagnosed with this disorder die within the first 2 years due to a severe encephalopathy. Mostly girls are affected because they have two X chromosomes, and the disorder is caused by mutations in a gene on the X chromosome called MECP2.

Rett syndrome is considered as one of the most devastating and deadliest neurological disorders and current therapy relies only on treatment of the symptoms. Children diagnosed with this disease typically have no communicating skills, most of the affected individuals can’t walk, and some of the other very common problems that occur are growth problems, scoliosis, constipation, and brain decline.

Professor Nicholas Tonks at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and his team developed the first drug, codenamed CPT157633, that shows promise at reversing Rett syndrome symptoms. First studies have been done on mice and X-ray crystallography at atomic level shows that the drug binds to its target, the enzyme PTP1B that was discovered after 25 years of research, which helps in regulating key metabolic and signaling pathways.

Rett Syndrome

Atomic-level model shows one of the experimental compounds named CPT157633 in mice modeling Rett syndrome interacts with the protein tyrosine phosphatase PTP1B. The result is inhibition of the enzyme and promotion of BDNF-TRKB signaling. (Image Credits: Tonks Lab/

The PTP1B group of enzymes is responsible for growth and development and Tonks team found 105 different PTP1B enzymes. One of these PTP1B enzymes was found to be elevated in mice that had the chromosome defect causing Rett syndrome, and Tonks’ team developed a few drugs that inhibit the function of this PTP1B enzyme that is associated with the MECP2 chromosome.

These drugs extended lifespan in male mice by as much as 90 days; female mice showed reversal of symptoms with at least 25% efficiency making this the first drug therapy that has the potential to reverse Rett syndrome at atomic-level, showing a lot of promise to further test it’s effects and hopefully in a very near future help the children coping with this disorder to get the best possible treatment.

The Toxic Attraction Between an Empath & a Narcissist-Best weight loss program

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I am an empath. I discovered I was an empath after I got involved in a very deep and highly destructive relationship with a narcissist.

I am writing this article from the perspective of an empath, however, would love to read the view from the opposite side if there are any narcissists that would like to offer their perception on this.

Through writing about the empath personality type I have connected with many other people who class themselves as an empath and time and again I have heard people tell me how they have also attracted relationships with narcissists. There is a link. So, I decided to explore it further.

For a detailed explanation of both the narcissist and empathy personality types, please click here and here.

This is my theory…

From my own experience and studies on the narcissist personality type, there is always one core trait: A narcissist is wounded.

Something, somewhere along the line, usually stemming from childhood causes a person to feel worthless and unvalued and, due to this, they will constantly and very desperately seek validation.

Here comes the empath, the healer. An empath has the ability to sense and absorb other people’s pain and often takes it on as though it were their own. If an empath is not consciously aware of boundaries and does not understand how to protect themselves, they will very easily and very quickly bond with the narcissist in order to try to fix and repair any damage and attempt to eradicate all their pain.

What the empath fails to realise is that the narcissist is a taker. An energy sucker, a vampire so to speak. They will draw the life and soul out of anyone they come into contact with, given the chance. This is so that they can build up their own reserves and, in doing so, they can use the imbalance to their advantage.

This dynamic will confuse and debilitate an empath, as if they do not have a full understanding of their own or other people’s capabilities, they will fail to see that not everyone is like them. An empath will always put themselves into other people’s shoes and experience the feelings, thoughts and emotions of others, while forgetting that other people may have an agenda very different to their own and that not everyone is sincere.

The narcissist’s agenda is one of manipulation, it is imperative they are in a position whereby they can rise above others and be in control. The empath’s agenda is to love, heal and care. There is no balance and it is extremely unlikely there ever will be one. The more love and care an empath offers, the more powerful and in control a narcissist will become.

The more powerful the narcissist becomes, the more likely the empath will retreat into a victim status. Then, there is a very big change—the empath will take on narcissistic traits as they too become wounded and are constantly triggered by the damage being in the company with a narcissist creates. Before long, an extremely vicious circle has begun to swirl.

When a narcissist sees that an empath is wounded they will play on this and the main intention will be to keep the empath down. The lower down an empath becomes, the higher a narcissist will feel. An empath will begin to frantically seek love, validation, confirmation and acceptance from a narcissist and each cry for help as such will affirm to the narcissist what they are desperate to feel inside—worthy. A bitter battle can ensue.

As an empath focuses solely on their pain, trauma and the destruction of their lives, they become self-obsessed and fail to see where the damage is coming from. Instead of looking outwards and seeing what is causing it, the empath will turn everything inward and blame themselves.

An empath at this stage must realise the situation they are in and wake up to it, as anyone who is deeply in pain and has been hurt can then become a narcissist themselves as they turn their focus onto their own pain and look for others to make them feel okay again.

Any attempt to communicate authentically with the narcissist will be futile as they will certainly not be looking to soothe and heal anyone else. Not only this, they are extremely charismatic and manipulative and have a powerful way of turning everything away from themselves and onto others. A narcissist will blame their own pain on an empath, plus they will also make sure the empath feels responsible for the pain they too are suffering.

An empath will know that they are in a destructive relationship by this stage and will feel so insecure, unloved and unworthy and it can be easy to blame all of their destruction onto the narcissist.

However, an empath should not be looking to blame anyone else. An empath has a choice, to remain the victim, a pawn in the narcissists game or to garner all strength they can muster and find a way out.

Emotionally exhausted, lost, depleted and debilitated an empath will struggle to understand what has happened to the once loving, attentive and charismatic person they were attracted to.

However we allow ourselves to be treated is a result of our own choices. If an empath chooses to stay in a relationship with a narcissist and refuses to take responsibility for the dynamic, they are choosing at some level what they believe they are worth on the inside. An empath cannot let their self-worth be determined by a narcissist. It is imperative they trust and believe in themselves enough to recognise that they are not deserving of the words and actions the narcissist delivers and to look for an escape.

In an empath’s eyes, all they searched and looked for was someone to take care of and love and to ultimately fix.” That is where the trouble began and that is the most profound part of this that an empath must realise.

We are not here to fix anyone. We cannot fix anyone. Everyone is responsible for and capable of fixing themselves, but only if they so choose to.

The more an empath can learn about the personality of a narcissist the sooner they will spot one and the less chance they have of developing a relationship with one. If a relationship is already underway, it is never too late to seek help, seek understanding and knowledge and to dig deep into one’s soul and recognise our own strengths and capabilities and do everything we can to build the courage and confidence to see it for what it is and walk away—for good.

The chance of a narcissist changing is highly unlikely, so we shouldn’t stick around waiting for it to happen. If a narcissist wants to change, then great, but it should never happen at the expense of anyone else. They are not consciously aware of their behaviour and the damage it causes and in their game they will sacrifice anyone and anything for their own gain—regardless of what pretty lies and sweet nothings they try to whisper.

An empath is authentic and is desperate to live true to their soul’s purpose and will very likely find the whole relationship a huge lesson, a dodged bullet and painfully awakening.

A narcissist will struggle to have any connection to their authentic self and will likely walk away from the relationship very easily once they realise they have lost their ability to control the empath. The game is no longer pleasurable if they are not having their ego constantly stroked, so they will seek out their next victim.

The ability for these two types to bond is quite simply impossible. The narcissist’s heart is closed, an empath’s is open—it is nothing short of a recipe for a huge disaster, and not a beautiful one.


First patient in diabetes trial no longer needs insulin therapy-Best Weight Loss Program

MIAMI, Sept. 10 (UPI) — The first patient to receive therapeutic delivery of islet cells in a new diabetes study no longer needs insulin therapy to control type 1 diabetes, according to doctors at the University of Miami’s Diabetes Research Institute.
The patient, Wendy Peacock, 43, has been giving herself insulin injections to control diabetes since she was diagnosed with the condition at age 17. Since she had the minimally-invasive procedure on August 18, Peacock has been off insulin, because her body is producing it naturally, and she no longer has the dietary restrictions that accompany type 1 diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes is caused by inadvertent destruction of insulin-producing islet cells in the pancreas by the immune system. While previous experimental treatments that involved the replacement of these cells has allowed patients to live without the need for insulin-replacement therapy for up to a decade, the goal is for better delivery of the cells to make the surgical treatment permanent — effectively curing the condition.

“The technique has been designed to minimize the inflammatory reaction that is normally observed when islets are implanted in the liver or in other sites with immediate contact to the blood,” said Dr. Camillo Ricordi, director of the DRI and a professor of biomedical engineering, microbiology, and immunology at the University of Miami, in a press release. “If these results can be confirmed, this can be the beginning of a new era in islet transplantation. Our ultimate goal is to include additional technologies to prevent the need for life-long anti-rejection therapy.”

Infusing patients with islet cells as a treatment for diabetes is not a new idea, however researchers at UM said keeping these cells alive and functioning to moderate blood glucose levels has been difficult. These cells are generally injected into the liver, which is not the most conducive for the survival of the new cells, often rendering the treatment temporary and limiting its use to patients with severe cases of type 1 diabetes.

With Peacock, doctors used a new method of injection, by delivering the cells to the omentum, a tissue that covers the abdominal organs, with a biodegradable scaffolding. The scaffold is made by combining patient’s blood with thrombin, a chemical used to control bleeding during surgery. The two substances form a gel-like material that sticks to the omentum and keeps the islets in place.

The gel is absorbed by the body over time, leaving the islet cells in place while new blood vessels form and send oxygen and nutrients to them so they can do their job. Anti-rejection therapy is currently used with patients, including Peacock, to help the body accept the cells over the long term.

“She is like a nondiabetic person but requires antirejection drugs,” Ricordi told the Miami Herald. “When you can do it without antisuppression, then it’s a cure.”

Attempting the transplant in the omentum, rather than the liver, is one part of the DRI’s clinical trial to create the BioHub, a medical platform that would allow for doctors to treat diabetes to the point of cure while easily manipulating the treatment when necessary.

“As any type 1 knows, you live on a very structured schedule,” Peacock said. “I do a mental checklist every day in my head — glucose tabs, food, glucometer, etc. — and then I stop and say, ‘WOW! I don’t have to plan that anymore.'”

“It’s surreal to me,” she said, “I’m still processing the fact that I’m not taking insulin anymore.”

When Does ‘Eating Clean’ Become an Eating Disorder? Best Weight loss Program

When Does 'Eating Clean' Become an Eating Disorder?

For years I have lived asking myself these questions: Have you thought about your food? Have you thought about the virtue of it—how healthy it is and how it will look on Instagram? And since we are on the topic, what does your food say about you? Does it tell the world you are clean and virtuous? Or is that stack of fluffy Sunday morning pancakes a gentle reminder that you know how to have fun, too? I have thought about all of this extensively, and it has been hell.

My only comfort has come from knowing other people have asked themselves these questions, too. Popular Instagram account @youdidnoteatthat—famous for mocking the notion that Instagram models and personalities are actually consuming the food they post meticulously edited photos of—didn’t just get a hundred thousand followers because no one is thinking about what we’re saying with our food.

The idea of an eating disorder that didn’t involve a loss of appetite or the desire to purge began hitting the zeitgeist a year and a half ago. The disease was called orthorexia, a term coined by Dr. Steven Bratman in 1997. “Orthorexia is defined as an unhealthy obsession with healthy food,” Dr. Bratman tells Broadly. “It’s not the diet that is orthorexia, it’s the diet that could lead to it. The more extreme or restrictive the diet, the more likely it could lead to orthorexia.”

The more extreme or restrictive the diet, the more likely it could lead to orthorexia.

After coining the term, Dr. Bratman went on to publish several books about orthorexia and healthy living. Today, he has created an official scientific definition for the disease and is working on getting it published and accepted by the medical community. But Dr. Bratman was not the one to bring orthorexia to the mainstream some year and a half ago. Jordan Younger, a 25-year-old lifestyle blogger from California, was.

Younger was a devout raw vegan who had built an online following of tens of thousands by writing about veganism and her virtuous diet on her then-blog The Blonde Vegan. To Younger, veganism was the cure-all she was hoping for—no longer did she suffer from chronic indigestion or feelings of bloating and discomfort. As she preached about the benefits of a plant-based diet alongside photos of bright green smoothies, mason jars brimming with chia seeds, and chopped kale salads, the popularity of her vegan persona grew.

Read more: Female Pain: Living with an Illness that No One Believes In

Soon vegan cleanse companies sought her out to try their pricey cleanses for free. Younger started cleansing religiously—for a minimum of three days a week, eventually finding that every time she finished a cleanse and reintroduced solid food, her stomach problems returned, making her feel even worse than before. But Younger was resolute in turning to vegan cleanses as the answer. Soon the cycle of cleansing, getting too hungry, binging on solid food, feeling guilty, and cleansing again became the norm. Instead of looking outside of veganism to feel better, Younger started fearing vegan foods that weren’t as healthy as she’d like them to be, and became riddled with anxiety about the food she ate.

Eventually, Younger came to understand that she had a problem. But hers wasn’t a classic eating disorder that people were familiar with; hers was a fixation on the virtue of food. She introduced the term orthorexia to her following, saying that she was suffering and was going to get help. The response she got was overwhelming: “Once I started talking about experience with orthorexia on my blog and national news picked up on it, a flood of people came forward saying they identified with me,” Younger tells Broadly. “We’re talking tens of thousands of messages. It’s been a year and a half and I haven’t stopped hearing from people. It’s not that number anymore; it’s a couple people a day now, but it showed me how many people feel inadequate and feel that living a balanced life is not enough.”

Once I started talking about experience with orthorexia on my blog, a flood of people came forward saying they identified with me.

Younger has since gone on to become the unofficial poster child for orthorexia. When I spoke to her she had just finished speaking to NBC about her upcoming bookBreaking Vegan, which came out on November 1 and documents her struggle with the disorder. “I do feel like I’ve become the poster child for orthorexia,” she says. “At first I was OK with it—more than OK with it because I want people who are suffering from it to know that they aren’t alone. Now, on a personal level, I feel like I’ve already answered every question and then some that could ever be asked about orthorexia. And I feel like, done with the topic as far as my personal interviews go.”

Younger was the perfect candidate to bring mass media attention to orthorexia: young, blonde, and unassuming. When she spoke, America listened, and the attention she was able to bring the disease was important and largely overdue.

People have died of orthorexia because they haven’t been properly diagnosed. And, as Younger’s floodgate of messages can attest, there are an enormous number of people suffering from orthorexic symptoms today. Nutritional therapist Dr. Karin Kratina, who has specialized in treating eating disorders for over 30 years and authored a paper about orthorexia on, tells Broadly: “I have absolutely seen a rise in orthorexic patients as a nutrition therapist. It’s almost rising exponentially. Now I get a new client every week with orthorexic symptoms. It is a serious problem.”

One of the reasons Dr. Kratina believes orthorexia is rising in popularity is because of our fixation on health. “There is nothing wrong with eating local or being a vegetarian or vegan,” she says. “I think a lot of those diets are inherently valuable. The problem is that we have moralized eating, weight, food, and exercise. Food has become presented—more and more—as the answer.”

Image via Stocksy.

We see this moral fixation on the virtues of food thrown back into our faces on a daily basis. Instagram can often seem like ground zero for a grotesque display of morally just food choices. Food bloggers like Deliciously Ella—whose vegan food blog has attracted hundreds of thousands of Instagram followers and multiple books deals—are attractive to us because they provide a clear answer: eating healthy will make you good. This answer, regularly served in the convenient form of an easily digestible #eatclean picture, feels so nice on our eyes.

“I think the images of all the really beautiful food—the joke for me is the kale smoothie—the endless kale smoothies are very pretty,” says Dr. Bratman. “A lot of it is wonderful food photography. I think this type of media is definitely causing orthorexia to reach a larger audience and a younger audience.”

But despite the increase in orthorexic patients and our constant fetishization of healthy food, doctors can’t officially diagnose orthorexia as a disease. This is because orthorexia hasn’t been accepted into the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders), the official manual that doctors use to diagnose patients with mental disorders. Because of this, it isn’t uncommon for orthorexic patients to go years without being diagnosed as having an eating disorder. And while the media has made orthorexia look like it’s on the verge of being accepted into the DSM, the truth is the disease is nowhere near that point.

The problem is that we have moralized eating, weight, food, and exercise.

“There’s at least ten years more to go before talking about it being in the DSM at all,” says Dr. Bratman. “There is only a small amount of research being done on orthorexia today. There’s a lot of media articles being written, but all they’re doing is repeating the same stuff, or sometimes telling very good personal stories, or they’re all more-or-less stupid rehashes of other stuff that’s out there. Most of the articles that I look at are really, really not very thought through.”

Because orthorexia isn’t well understood outside of certain circles, those who suffer from it can have difficulty realizing that their condition is valid and finding resources to get help. “One of the things that worries me is that, after years of struggling with orthorexia, I didn’t get help,” Kaila Prins, a health and wellness coach in San Jose who struggled with orthorexia for 10 years, tells Broadly. “Nobody thought I needed help. Even when I asked for help people said, ‘Well you’re going to have to pay for your own recovery.’ Insurance companies wouldn’t help me because I didn’t have the same behaviors that an anorexic does. I didn’t look like an anorexic until I finally stopped getting my period. I was not not eating. I was just eating so healthfully and so restrictively that I was very sick.” Prins was left to deal with multiple bouts of depression and suicidal thoughts on her own. Help didn’t come until ten years later, when she found Dr. Bratman’s breakthrough book Health Food Junkies, which explained orthorexia and helped Prins diagnose herself.

Instead of getting help when she was struggling with orthorexia, she got compliments: “I started getting thinner and thinner and got compliments and my first boyfriend. People in my family who had never approved of me before were telling me that I looked amazing.”

I was not not eating. I was just eating so healthfully and so restrictively that I was very sick.

I know that Prins’ experience isn’t an isolated incident. In early 2013—after undertaking a strict Paleo diet—something similar happened to me. What started as a mission to unnecessarily shed ten pounds and reap the alleged health benefits of a Paleo lifestyle soon spiraled into an obsession with the virtues of my food. Since I was eating only vegetables, coconut oil, and lean meat, the ten pounds came off quickly. Soon, people who hadn’t spoken to me in years started praising me for how great I looked. The compliments were addicting—they would become my justification for enduring what evolved into a fear of half the food groups. Soon I started making excuses about why I couldn’t go out for Chinese food or beers with my roommates.

“You’re being crazy,” my roommate would tell me. “Just get a wonton soup, you’ll be fine.” What they didn’t understand is that wontons were wrapped in the devil that was wheat, and I was looking forward to staying up late reading fear-mongering articles about the risks and benefits of different types of nut butters. Eventually, exhausted by the weight of my own “craziness,” I had an anxiety attack in frozen foods section of the grocery store and signed myself up for therapy shortly after that. This should have been the beginning of my recovery. But instead, my therapist diagnosed me with OCD. Taking my OCD diagnosis in stride, I continued carefully monitoring my Paleo diet, basking in the compliments I was receiving, and having anxiety attacks in the grocery store.

This is the side of orthorexia that demands attention: If we are applauding eating disorders without realizing, then it’s clear that the way we talk about food needs to change. While institutions like the DSM can move slowly—let’s not forget that the term “anorexia” was first used a full 80 years before it was included in the DSM—we cannot continue ignoring an eating disorder because we refuse to understand what it is.

Orthorexics are not “crazy” and othorexia is not about blaming healthy food. It is about when the desire to eat healthy takes away from the other aspects of a person’s life. As Jordan Younger writes on her blog, orthorexia occurs when someone believes that a diet is the answer: “It breaks my heart to see and hear beautiful, motivated, capable young women being sucked in to an extreme diet and way of life because it has been branded to them as ‘THE HEALTHIEST WAY TO LIVE’ above all else,” she notes. “If anything is claiming to be the #1 healthiest, or the ONLY way to live, then you know you’ve found a problem.”

Awareness Needed For Deadly Disease That Claimed Life of Alan Rickman



Pancreatic Cancer Has the Lowest Survival Rate of Any Major Cancer, Only 8 Percent

Manhattan Beach, CA – (January 19, 2016) — In honor of the passing of Alan Rickman, an accomplished theater and film actor best known for his role as Professor Severus Snape in the Harry Potter films, the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network urges the nation to better understand pancreatic cancer.

Pancreatic cancer has the lowest five-year survival rate of any major cancer, at only 8 percent.

Earlier this year, the American Cancer Society reported that more patients will die from pancreatic cancer than breast cancer this year, moving pancreatic cancer from the fourth to the third-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States.

And by 2020, pancreatic cancer is expected to surpass colon cancer to become the second-leading cause of cancer deaths.

“It’s time to shine a brighter spotlight on pancreatic cancer,” said Julie Fleshman, JD, MBA, president and CEO of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. “The statistics speak for themselves and relay an even greater urgency to incite a national movement, focused on research that will result in new treatment options and better outcomes for patients battling this disease.”

Rickman, who died from the disease on Jan. 14, 2016, at the age of 69, joins a growing list of other musicians, actors and notable public figures who’ve succumbed to the disease, including Patrick Swayze.

“We are saddened that Rickman’s life was cut short by this ruthless disease,” said Fleshman. “We remain committed to bring better treatment options to pancreatic cancer patients and double survival by 2020.”

To double survival by 2020, the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network funds research, advocates for increased funding and resources from the federal government, raises awareness through community outreach, and provides excellent patient services and support for novel initiatives likeClinical Trial Finder, the Know Your Tumor personalized medicine service and the Patient Registry.

To learn more about the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, visit

Follow the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.

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About the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network
The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network is the national organization creating hope in a comprehensive way through research, patient support, community outreach and advocacy for a cure. The organization is leading the way to increase survival for people diagnosed with this devastating disease through a bold initiative — The Vision of Progress: Double Pancreatic Cancer Survival by 2020. To continue to accelerate progress, a goal to raise $200 million by 2020 is also in place. Together, we can Wage Hope and rewrite the future of pancreatic cancer.



So many people suffer from anxiety and headaches these days. I believe this to be a mixture of our lifestyles and many of the changes that are taking place in our world that are pushing people to question what we’ve been doing as a society repetitively for many years. You know what I mean… that feeling that there is something more than just going to work, making money, coming home, eating and repeating it all. It may sound cliche, but it’s evident.

Deep down we can feel it, that something isn’t quite “right” with our world anymore and there’s a certain sense of freedom from it all that is calling us from deep within ourselves. Not knowing what that feeling is exactly or what to do, we sometimes will feel anxiety or overwhelm as we look at our lives. How do we deal with these things? There are a number of actions we can take to address the core issue which you can explore here.

It’s important that we begin to explore this feeling inside. That knowing that things can be different, that our world doesn’t have to be the way it is. Whether it is people getting fed up with the 9 – 5, feeling disconnected from themselves and others or feeling the desire to do what we love and are passionate about, our patience with avoiding these things is continuously growing thin. It’s time, it’s time to explore it!

Other than inspiring people to begin that exploration and letting them know “you’re not crazy, many people are feeling this too,” I also wanted to share something simple that can aid us while we are making more long-term adjustments.

Lavender Lemonade

Pure lavender oil is an incredible essential oil to use for your own health and wellness. It’s among the gentlest of essential oils, but also one of the most powerful, making it a favorite of households for the healing properties and uses of lavender essential oil. Lavender oil  has a chemically complex structure with over 150 active constituents, which explains its effectiveness at helping with a lot of health ailments. Lavender oil possesses amazing anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal, antidepressant, antiseptic, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antispasmodic, analgesic, detoxifier, hypotensive, and sedative properties.

Florida researchers have found that lavender oil benefits include reducing anxiety and lowering pulse rates in nursing students taking stressful tests. And in hospital settings, lavender aromatherapy has been demonstrated to decrease pre-surgery distress and to be more relaxing than massage or merely resting.(1)

Lavender essential oil has medicinal properties as well. It has been shown to reduce depression, improve insomnia and ease labor pains. And anecdotal evidence suggests that lavender oil benefits those with headaches, hangovers, sinus congestion and pain relief.
“Much prior research on lavender has focused on the administration of lavender via an olfactory route. The anxiolytic activity of lavender olfaction has been demonstrated in several small and medium-sized clinical trials.46-53 The efficacy of aromatherapy of lavender is thought to be due to the psychological effects of the fragrance combined with physiological effects of volatile oils in the limbic system.54 These calming effects of lavender oil and single constituents may be the origin of the traditional use of lavender. Lavender oil olfaction has been shown to decrease anxiety, as measured by the Hamilton rating scale,51 and can increase mood scores.

The following are selected examples of clinical trials on lavender aromatherapy:

  • Dunn and colleagues demonstrated anxiolytic activity of lavender oil aromatherapy in patients in intensive care units. Subjects received at least 1 session of aromatherapy with 1% lavender essential oil. Significant anxiolytic effects were noted in the 1st treatment, though 2nd and 3rd treatments did not appear to be as effective.47
  • Alaoui-Ismaili and colleagues found that the aroma of lavender is considered by subjects to be very pleasant and is correlated with changes in the autonomic nervous system.56
  • Tysoe and colleagues conducted a study of lavender oil in burner use on staff mood and stress in a hospital setting. A significant number of respondents (85%) believed that lavender aroma improved the work environment following the use of the lavender oil burners.57
  • Diego and colleagues demonstrated that people receiving lavender oil (10%) olfaction for 3 minutes felt significantly more relaxed and had decreased anxiety scores, improved mood and increased scores of alpha power on EEG (an indicator of alertness), and increased speed of mathematical calculations.58
  • Lewith and colleagues investigated the effects of lavender aromatherapy on depressed mood and anxiety in female patients being treated with chronic hemodialysis.59 The effects of aromatherapy were measured using the Hamilton rating scale for depression (HAMD) and the Hamilton rating scale for anxiety (HAMA). Lavender aroma significantly decreased the mean scores of HAMA, suggesting an effective, noninvasive means for the treatment of anxiety in hemodialysis patients.
  • Lavender aromatherapy, with or without massage, may also reduce the perception of pain and the need for conventional analgesics in adults and children, though more rigorously controlled trials are needed.60″ (2)

DIY Lavender Lemonade with Lavender Essential Oil


  • 1 cup raw honey
  • 12 cups pure water
  • 1 drop lavender essential oil
  • 6 lemons, peeled and juiced
  • Lavender sprigs for garnish


Mix all ingredients together and chill. Add more water or raw honey if needed.

Other ways you can use Lavender Oil for Anxiety and Headaches

  • Mix 5 to 6 drops of Lavender essential oil to your bath water if you have dry skin.
  • Diffuse 10 to 12 drops of Lavender into the air during your workday for natural stress relief.
  • Add 2 drops of Lavender per ounce of your favorite lightly scented, unrefined organic oil (like almond oil or olive oil) for a body oil with all the benefits of lavender for improving your skin, relaxing your mind, warding off insects or helping you sleep.


Vaccine hope to cure Crohn’s disease

Hope has come for sufferers of a crippling bowel disease in the form of a new vaccine.

The news comes as fears are rising that Crohn’s disease is caused by a bug found in milk.

Human trials begin this summer on the innovative vaccine which researchers believe is a breakthrough in the battle to find a cure for the disease.

Scotland has one of the highest incidences of Crohn’s disease in the world with one in 200 people affected. The majority of these are young people and children.

Professor John Hermon-Taylor of King’s College, London is convinced a TB-like bacterium called MAP ((mycobacterium avian subspecies paratuberculosus) is the cause of the disease.

The bug causes a similar illness in cattle, sheep, pigs and primates, and he believes, once passed into the food chain, through milk or meat, causes most human cases of Crohn’s disease. The bacterium is now also being implicated in a similar inflammatory bowel disease, ulcerative colitis.

New research commissioned by the UK government has also revealed evidence that MAP may be the cause of Crohn’s.

In the report issued a few months ago by the Government’s Advisory Committee on Dangerous Pathogens, Dr Ingrid Olsen said: “Together with all the genetic susceptibility emerging over the last decade, it is very hard to reject the hypothesis of mycobacteria being involved in the development of CD.”

The report also reveals live MAP is much more prevalent in pasteurised milk supplies than previously thought.

According to Dr Irene Grant of the Institute for Global Food Security at Queen’s University in Belfast, 50 per cent of dairy herds in the UK are affected.

In the government report, she added: “Without effective control programmes, MAP infection has spread widely and unquestionably the potential for human exposure to MAP via milk, dairy products and potentially beef has risen too.

“There is evidence that the incidence of Crohn’s disease in various countries has been rising over recent years.”

The bug has also been found in high quantities in infant milk formula which the report says is of particular concern.

The latest evidence reveals the bacterium can survive pasteurisation at higher temperatures than previously thought.

Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis have rocketed in babies and children over the past few decades – rising by more than 80 per cent.

Gastroenterologists have described it as an “epidemic.”

The vaccine has already been successfully tested on animals and now human trials are due to take place in London in July.

A substantial number of cattle go on to develop an illness called Johne’s diseases, which, under a microscope, is almost identical to Crohn’s disease in humans.

Professor Taylor was the first doctor to make the link between Crohn’s and MAP.

Previously, the UK Government has said that transmission to humans of MAP from animals was not proven, despite evidence of it getting into the milk supply.

But a report in the World Journal of Gastroenterology in December 2015 disputes this after a study in India where MAP is endemic in livestock and the general environment.

More than 42,000 people were tested over a two-year period, including healthy individuals and MAP was detected in all categories of patients at different frequencies.

The report, “On deaf ears, Mycobacterium avium paratuberculosis in pathogenesis Crohn’s and other diseases” states: “The results clearly show, humans like other species, are equally susceptible to infection with MAP regardless of health status.

“This places whole populations at risk of infection, depending on the prevalence of MAP in the environment and food supply.”

The report indicates that MAP in humans works in a similar way as TB, where not all people who have the bug become ill. Those with MAP who do become ill, develop Crohn’s disease.

More info on the MAP vaccine which has been developed at the prestigious Jenner’s Institute at King’s College, London, can be found at

Professor Taylor said: “We believe there is compelling evidence pointing to MAP as the cause of Crohn’s disease. We are extremely confident that the vaccine will work.”

The professor says that MAP is highly resilient, and, milk apart, has also got into the water supply by being washed off fields where cattle graze.

Crohn’s disease leads to a chronic inflammation of the intestine, wrecking patients’ lives and sufferers are at high risk of bowel cancer.

At the moment, mainstream medication concentrates on treating the symptoms only and very often does not work. Three quarters of Crohn’s disease sufferers need major surgery.

The first phase of trials on healthy humans, costing £1.4million is being funded by HAV Vaccines Ltd. Funding is needed for the second phase.

Volunteers, mainly made up of Crohn’s patients and their families are also raising the £470,000 for a diagnostic blood test to run in conjunction with the vaccine trials. They have set up a fundraising Facebook page at

Professor Hermon-Taylor says that the bacterium is resistant to standard anti-TB drugs and has learned to “hide” from the body’s immune defences by invading white blood cells. Its hidden presence unbalances the delicate physiology of the gut, making it leaky to other bacteria and food molecules, triggering inflammation.

In studies a majority of people with Crohn’s disease have tested positive for MAP and it has now also been isolated in some people with ulcerative colitis.

Source: .edinburghnews.scotsman

The Blur of Bipolar Disorder

I’ve always been the type of person who has trouble staying still. Constantly moving from one thing to the next, or at least wanting to. It’s hard for me to make a decision because I can’t choose just one thing or focus on one thing. And the worse things get, the faster I want to move. The less I want to slow down or stop or be quiet. I move as quickly as possible to the next job, the next bottle of wine, the next person, party, hobby. I can’t even focus on a 20-minute television show for more than five minutes. I can’t do what I love — reading or writing or digesting a film or a record because that would involve me being still and I can’t be still because that means addressing what is happening. Admitting there is a problem. Realizing I’m once again broken. So I speed. I zig and I zag and I am too much. I drink too much. I cry too much. I buy too much. I go as fast as I can for as long as I can until I can’t do it anymore. Until I physically can’t take another step. Until I can’t feel too much anymore.

Until I’m done.

Until I am broken and all I can manage now is to turn off all the lights and sleep and try and remember how I got to this point.

Because by this point all I can remember are blurs.

A blur of me sitting in my car in the rain and crying on the phone while my boyfriend tries to understand why I’m crying.

A blur of me huddled under the covers while my dog remains loyally cemented to the foot of my bed keeping watch.

A blur of me dashing out the door with nowhere to really go because I want to avoid talking about anything that matters with my roommate.

A blur of seeing my mom’s name show up on the phone screen and turning it over so I can pretend I never saw the call.

I remember something about laughing but it’s faint and I can’t remember what was so funny. Something about music but none of the songs make me feel anything. Something about reading but nothing on the pages grabs my attention. Something about nature but
I don’t want to leave my bed. I drive over a bridge and for a moment imagine what it would be like to go over the side. Would it hurt? Would I feel something, anything?

And then I’m in a long abandoned antique mall’s parking lot screaming and choking because I wished it would actually happen. That it would all be over. That I would maybe feel something when I hit the water. But I also don’t want to feel anything or think about anything ever again.

I want everyone to leave me alone but I sob when I think my wish might actually come true. I dream about being surrounded by people and all of them hate me. I dream about everyone I love leaving me and screwing me over. I wake up screaming and scared and shaking. Most of all I wake up angry. I carry this anger around. I wrap myself in it. My journal becomes a scribble of messy, heavy bits of prose and lyrics. I’m angry with myself for letting this happen again and I want everyone to be angry with me, too. I want to feel
something, anything. I stand outside in just a t-shirt. I can see my breath but I’m not cold. I still don’t feel anything. And then all of a sudden I realize I’m sitting on my bed while my roommate sits on one of the numerous mounds of clothes that covers my floor.

“This is the lowest I’ve seen you.”

I get lunch with my mom.

“You just don’t seem like your usual sweet self.”

I’m listening again.

Everything is coming back into focus.

I talk on the phone with my boyfriend and don’t spend the entire time in tears.

“I love you.”

And I believe him.

I return texts and phone calls. I sing in the car. I read. I sit on a bench for an hour enjoying how the sun feels hot on my face. I walk outside and shiver because of the cold.

I get up at 7 a.m. and eat a bagel. I spend time deliberately, delicately picking out what to wear. I’m being put back together. But I’m still not there.

The pieces are settling back together. I am settling. I feel quiet inside and I don’t mind.

I stop trying to pack my days full of things one right after the other. I am caught off guard by the scars, but I have a hard time recalling exactly how they got there and am grateful that was a blur. I am grateful because the monsters that terrified me in my dreams were just that — fantastical monsters. I am grateful that though they don’t understand why I can’t pick myself up or crawl out of bed they want to and they try. I am grateful because while he doesn’t understand why, he holds me while my mind moves too fast and everything is just too loud. I am grateful because while she doesn’t understand why, she shares a pint of ice cream and her couch with me while I talk until I have nothing left to say and then it’s OK if I don’t say anything at all. I am grateful because they do understand, at least a little.

I am grateful because they know how it’s going to end and still they stand by patiently, so very close, waiting to push me back up again and again.

When My Seizures Are Radiant, Horrific and Unspeakably Beautiful-life insurance program

In high school I started getting nauseating deja vu. Out of nowhere, the world suddenly seemed both unreal and hyperreal, like the clearest dream. I could remember everything before it happened, and then I could remember my entire life, all of human history, all of being. I got magnificent insights into philosophy, I could feel mortality in my bones and understood more than ever the importance of living a reflective and full life. Everything felt other-worldly and intense, and so beautiful. At the same time, I was gripped by horrible nausea and dread. An “unthinkable idea” was chasing my consciousness around my brain, and if I allowed myself to focus on it, something terrible would happen. Sometimes I had hallucinations, like having a dream while awake — I never thought they were real. It was always strange and abstract stuff, like my dog leading me through a rainforest or Friedrich Nietzsche trying to tell me how to live my life. And then within moments, everything went back to normal and I could hardly remember what had happened. For years I assumed this was ordinary deja vu, or maybe an existential crisis. I didn’t think much of it.

Then I began fainting. Episodes would start with the uncanny deja vu, but sometimes they got so powerful I’d fall unconscious. Doctors assured me, “This is OK, you probably have issues with low blood pressure – it’s nothing to worry about.” So I didn’t; after all, this was a reassuring misdiagnosis.

But the first six stressful months of graduate school brought more “fainting” than I had experienced in my life. Trying in vain to describe the deja vu to my boyfriend, I finally Googled it. Somebody else must get these, I thought. “Nausea at existence, being unto death, feeling of the sublime” – it can’t just be me and the existential philosophers.

My heart sank when I saw the results. It was page after page of epilepsy or brain tumor or neurological disorder. When I read the descriptions, I knew instantly this was it.

I saw a neurologist, was quickly diagnosed with temporal lobe epilepsy, and breathed a deep sigh of relief when my MRI revealed a tumorless brain. I learned that a seizure is a cascade of misfiring neurons. When this happens in my temporal lobe (my memory, emotion and spirituality centers), I get confused about reality and memory, I get intense and inexplicable feelings — and of course the spirituality aspect is the most obvious. All of this is called a “partial seizure.” Sometimes the cascade of misfiring neurons can spread from the temporal lobes into the rest of the brain, causing sudden loss of consciousness, which tends to look a lot like fainting. This is called a “generalized seizure” and they’re typically less common. Throughout history, partial seizures have been interpreted as spiritual awakenings or communications with God. With such bizarre and abstract warning signs, I’m not the only one who has gone a decade without realizing anything was wrong.

sun shining over woman's face, covering the left side of her head

When I have seizures, dreams flood my consciousness. I feel sick but the world is illuminated; I feel as though some external force is showing me meaning, lifting me up. Eyes close, lips turn white, body falls.

I’ll get back up again, I always do. Epilepsy can be rough, and sometimes I wish I never had it. But I always reach a paradox — my seizures have been formative. Simulated or not, the philosophically profound moments have influenced my thoughts and experiences. I don’t think I would have followed the same path in life were it not for them. An Anna (that’s me!) without epilepsy isn’t Anna at all.

To be clear, even temporal lobe epilepsy is serious and requires treatment — as much as I’ve gained from seizures, they aren’t healthy and carry a risk of death. I take medication now, and seizures happen less frequently. It’s OK if they go away and never come back. I’ve taken all I need from them.

I wish it was more common knowledge that epilepsy isn’t only helmets and convulsions, seizures aren’t all strobe lights and unconsciousness — even doctors seem oblivious. Some seizures are radiant and horrific and unspeakably beautiful.

Whaaaaat!?! This Is Fxcked Up: Tranny Gets The Beats In McDonalds In Baltimore & Starts To Have A Seizure! (Jumped By 14-Year-Old Girl)

Whaaaaat!?! This Is Fxcked Up: Tranny Gets The Beats In McDonalds In Baltimore & Starts To Have A Seizure! (Jumped By 14-Year-Old Girl)

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