Category Archives: Health Issues

Reading for Health

Last week, we talked about reading for health. Let’s talk about ways to accomplish this.

1) Your Public Library. Most towns have a local library where you can get books for free. Libraries even offer magazines, newspapers, and books on tape. To sign up for a card, usually you just need to bring in proof of your address, like a bill (if you haven’t gone green), or some other mailing.

2) Kindle App. There are many free books you can read through the Kindle app. It helps if you are a Prime member. On the first of every month, you are sent an email with free choices of books to read that aren’t even published yet. They are the books set to be published the following month but you get a chance to read them for free. You also can borrow up to 10 books at a time for free if you are a Prime member. If you own a Kindle device, you can also borrow one book a month from the Kindle owner’s lending library. That is 12 books a month right there! You can also search for books that are free.

3) Rakuten OverDrive. You can read library books and audiobooks through your library or school. The only caveat we have found is that the library may carry books OverDrive doesn’t and vice-versa. You can download the OverDrive app to your device, sign in with your library card number or create an account and add your library number to your account. You must belong to a local library or school to use this free app. If a book you want to read is unavailable you can recommend it and see if it becomes available. They allow you to download the book in ePub or Kindle versions. If you download the ePub, you read it through the OverDrive app. If you choose Kindle, you borrow it through Amazon Kindle. You can choose 1 or 2 weeks as your loan period.

4) Public Domain books. The Victor crew found a resource that has a long list of places where you can find free public domain books, some in pdf form:

5) Bible apps. There are several apps where you can read the Bible in whatever translation you want. You just need to search the app store for your device. One of the most popular is YouVersion. It has many versions in many languages.

There is no excuse not to find something to read for free.

Reading for the Health of it!

Did you know reading is good for you? Here are some ways it can help:

1) Reading can help reduce stress. Because it can immerse you into new worlds, you can forget about some of the issues dogging you. It offers a distraction.

2) Reading helps keep your brain from slowing down too quickly. Keeping your mind active helps slow down cognitive decline.

3) Reading can help improve your sleep. If you use a device at bedtime to read, be sure to use the night or blue mode, though.

4) Reading can improve some social skills. Engaging with book characters helps increase empathy.

5) Reading may increase intelligence. Well, the more you read, the more you know.

Does it matter what you read? Some of the wealthiest, most successful people read biographies, autobiographies, educational, and other non-fiction books. Health benefits are enhanced from all kinds of reading. Even reading for just 6 minutes a day can help.


Ever have trouble sleeping?

Trouble sleeping could come from anything be related to a number of things – what you eat, eating before bed, stress, acid reflux, too much on your mind. Too much caffeine may affect sleep habits as well.

If you eat too close to bedtime, it can cause acid reflux because there hasn’t been enough time to digest the food you’ve eaten. Some foods like tomato sauce and chocolate give trouble too since they are so acidic.

If you must eat at night, maybe try some oatmeal or something else that is bland and fulfilling.

Gluten-Free Products

We’ve talked about gluten before. More and more gluten-free products seem to be appearing on the grocery shelves.

We’ve seen pasta made from quinoa, rice, potato, brown rice, corn and rice, red lentils, buckwheat, sweet potato, chick peas, pumpkin, green peas, black beans, mixtures that include some of the above along with amaranth and corn flours. Soba noodles are gluten-free as they are made from buckwheat – a seed not a grain.

We’ve added red lentil penne to hearty bean soups for a nice changeup. You don’t want to overcook gluten-free pastas as they will be limp and may lose their flavor. Follow cooking directions on the packaging for the best. Gluten-free pasta has come a long way from the first attempts.

You can also find a lot of gluten-free breads on the market as well. Looking at various types they use rice flour, tapioca flour, sorghum flour, potato starch as part of the ingredients.

How do so many people get addicted?

You’ve seen the commercials for opioid addiction. Why are so many addicted? What are opioids anyway? What do they do in your body? Let’s try to find answers to these questions.

First opioids are painkillers such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, codeine, morphine, fentanyl, and heroin (illegal). All except heroin can be obtained legally through a prescription.

Opioids work by blocking that pain and release dopamine. Dopamine gives you good feeling, but doesn’t last. It is kind of like giving your brain a temporary reward. Other things can cause this temporary rush like doing something daring like a sky-diving trip, or something like hugging a loved one.

As people take opioids, they build a tolerance to them and have to take more and more to get that feeling of the rush of dopamine. Addiction occurs when you become dependent on the opioids due to repeated use. Withdrawal symptoms can mimic having the flu. Only harder…because you know there is one thing that can take it away quickly.

Doctors often prescribe them after surgery, or an accident. Many times they will only prescribe about 10 pills to get through a few days to try to lessen the chance of addiction.

If you try to obtain some of these drugs illegally, they can be cut with contaminants simply so they can make more pills with less of the product to make more money.

If you become addicted, seek help from a doctor. Many states have hotlines that will get you the help you need. Awareness is key.

Where to find help