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Question: What daily habits might we be surprised to find are negatively affecting our health?

Answer: The most common for all of us is probably the mechanization and heavy dependency on technology. We rarely give a second thought when we now turn on a microwave oven, pop open the cellular phone to our ear or turn on the television as we sit down for dinner. These are common practices for most families but have many adverse effects on our physical, mental and emotional health. If you eat a meal in front of the television, you will find that you consume more and are still hungry. Improper sleeping habits are another common mistake in today’s fast-paced, fun-at-any-cost culture. We decide that if we work hard, then we are going to play hard, too. So we come home late and try to squeeze as much fun into the day as possible without taking the time to realize that our body is intricately linked to the planetary cycles and requires proper rest to rejuvenate and rebuild.

Yet another example of our unhealthy activities is the salad craze. We think that by substituting most of our meals with salads, we are eating healthy and providing good nutrition for our bodies. It is true that there are benefits to eating fresh vegetables and greens. However, eating too many raw foods is increasingly difficult on our digestive tract and tends to cause digestive problems.

Question: What advice can you give for someone who suffers migraine headaches? Answer: Generally for all types of headaches, the first approach should be based on foods and lifestyle corrections before attempting to use drugs. Something in your life is creating the adverse environment that is responsible for your headaches. There may be hormonal imbalances or a substantial deficiency of essential nutrients. It is difficult to give you specific advice without proper assessment; however, in general, begin incorporating the following foods into your diet: chrysanthemum flowers, mint, green onions, pearl barley, carrots, prunes, buckwheat and peach kernels. Also drink more water daily, at least 80 ounces of room temperature (no ice) water per day. Try to get at least eight hours of sleep a night, and avoid direct sunlight or excessive heat exposure to your head. A rigorous intestinal cleanse is also recommended. Avoid spicy foods, alcohol, smoking, excess stimulation, eyestrain and stress. Try these remedies:

1. Make a tea from Chinese Prunes, mint and green tea.

2. Mash peach kernels and walnuts, mix them with rice wine, and lightly roast. Take two tablespoons of this three times daily.

3. Make a tea from oyster shells and chrysanthemum flowers. Slowly boil the shells for 1 1/2 hours, then add the flowers in the last 30 minutes.

I recommend you arrange a visit with an acupuncturist; acupuncture and herbal medicine has shown efficacy in treating certain headaches.

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