Currently viewing the category: "Health & Well-Being"

A recent study at the NIH NCCIH demonstrated the cost effectiveness of treating lower back pain with mindfulness based stress reduction. This is yet another reminder that there are more therapeutic approaches than pharmaceuticals to dealing with lower back pain.

Cannabis use is medically approved in 29 states and the District of Columbia for many clinical conditions. Most individuals seek out its use for reducing pain and helping with sleep. However, studies illustrate that cannabis also has anti-inflammatory and immune enhancing properties, which can benefit chronic autoimmune conditions like psoriatic arthritis.

A CBS Sunday AM segment that aired today illustrates to me just how “touch-starved’ and alienated we’ve become as an American society. The segment shows how “across the country professional cuddlers are tackling the demand for non-sexual touch,” charging clients $120 for a 90 minute session of “holding people for an extended period of time.”

It’s very true that the biochemical and therapeutic benefits of touch cannot be underestimated. The skin, after all, is the largest organ in the body, and it is rich with nerve receptors, neurochemicals, and immune modulators. Child psychologists have long recognized that loving physical contact between mothers and babies is essential for normal growth and development and for maintaining good health. Studies on the benefits of massage have also demonstrated signifiant reductions in cortisol, our body’s stress hormone.

So, this Valentine’s Day (and every day), put aside all the texting, to reach out and touch someone, and get your “free hugs” before they become commoditized by a complete stranger…