Demand for air travel is almost back to where it was pre-pandemic…… So it’s time to talk about airport germs again! Here are the top germ “hot spots” to avoid according to microbiologist Dr. Kelly Reynolds from the University of Arizona:
First, the absolute dirtiest spots in airports are the touch screens on self-check-in kiosks! In fact, a study found the average airport touch screen contains over 200 thousand potentially illness-causing bacteria and fungal cells per square inch…… Which is FOUR TIMES MORE than the average household toilet seat!
Also, beware of the reusable bins at the security checkpoint. According to the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, HALF of those bins carry the viruses that cause common colds! And a “significant” number contains dangerous waste matter – due to all the shoes and bags loaded into them, which were recently touching the ground!
Finally, as you’re waiting to board your flight, try to avoid touching chair armrests at the airport gate. Research shows those are on par with public toilet seats when it comes to the amount of illness-causing germs they contain. That’s because they get cleaned less frequently than the seats on planes…… and they’re constantly being touched by people who’ve just been eating food, changing diapers, or using the bathroom.Continue Reading
Right before your next big meal – take a brisk 5-minute walk.
Because 5-minute micro-bursts of exercise can boost your energy and decrease fatigue, and keep cravings under control. That’s according to the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity.
That little bit of extra movement is enough to increase blood flow, which could play a role in helping you feel alert. Being active also suppresses hunger. Plus, aerobic activity before a meal can help keep levels of unhealthy triglyceride-rich proteins in check in the bloodstream.
The exercise encourages the body to release hormones that actually work to clear unhealthy particles from your bloodstream. It also makes your arteries more flexible.
So a short 5-minute power walk before a meal can keep your eating in check and your heart healthy.Continue Reading
Do you worry that you – or someone you love – is at high risk for age-related cognitive decline, like dementia or Alzheimer’s? Here’s an early sign to watch out for: Walking more slowly than usual.
A team from Monash University in Australia led by Dr. Taya Collyer kept tabs on nearly 17 thousand retirees over a 7-year period. Study participants took periodic tests to measure memory, mental speed, verbal fluency, overall cognitive decline, and walking speed.
The result: Those walking at least 5% slower than the previous year, were at higher risk for dementia.
Dr. Collyer believes a declining walking speed is linked to shrinkage in the hippocampus, the brain area linked to memory, learning, and spatial navigation.
The good news is: We can slow the progress of age-related cognitive decline with consistent exercise! Psychologists from the University of Pittsburgh had seniors begin walking 10 minutes a day – and gradually increased it to 40 minutes a day.
The result: Study participants increased the size of their hippocampus by up to 2%, which shaved 1 to 2 years off their brain’s actual age.
Again, we now know one of the early signs of cognitive decline is a slower walking speed.
The post Early Signs of Dementia or Alzheimer’s You Should Watch Out For appeared first on John Tesh.Continue Reading
As the old Yiddish saying goes, “We plan, God laughs.” And that’s never been more true than right now, as we deal with so much uncertainty in the world – from canceled flights, to shipping delays, to higher prices! So, how can we effectively set goals and move forward in life?
According to time management expert Laura Vanderkam, consider these words when making plans: “Hold the NEAR future tightly, hold the FAR future lightly.” Meaning, if you’re making plans for the next two weeks, Vanderkam says absolutely nail down as many details as possible.
But if you’re making plans for the next six to 12 months, go ahead and take some action – like reserving a wedding venue or buying plane tickets for a vacation, but don’t stress over the specific details just yet. And beyond a year, she says, you shouldn’t make concrete plans at all…… just think in terms of what your long-term intentions are.
Vanderkam says when you adopt this mindset – to hold the near future tightly, and the far future lightly – it allows you to focus your energy on the short-term plans that are the most likely to yield results…… while minimizing the disappointment that comes when plans suddenly have to be changed or canceled!
And that way, you can continue to move toward your longer-term goals, without being caught off guard every time life throws a curve-ball!
Hold the near future tightly, and the far future lightly.Continue Reading
Here we go with the latest on speed-learning. How to learn anything at double-speed?
The next time you need to watch a training video for work, or anything educational, and you’re short on time……Go ahead and speed up the video!
Researchers say you’ll learn the information as well as if you just played the video at regular speed. This is the latest from the journal of Applied Cognitive Psychology.
For the study, they had subjects watch a selection of videos at normal speeds and others at much faster speeds. Then, they were tested on the subject matter. Even they were surprised by the results.
When the videos were played 2 times faster than normal, people scored just as well as when the videos were viewed at a regular speed. The researchers say a slightly faster presentation does NOT over-tax a person’s working memory.
Speed learning…it’s a thing.Continue Reading
If your morning gets off to a rough start, or you experience a setback during the day, do you find your WHOLE DAY is ruined and derailed from then on?
Well, no more! There’s a new productivity hack that allows us to trick our brains into pushing past setbacks. It’s called the “four quarters method.”
According to behavior expert Daniel Pink, it simply means splitting each day into four distinct sections – and taking a break between each one.
For example: Quarter #1 includes waking up, interacting with your family, maybe exercising and then starting. Then, there’s the late-morning quarter when you’re working from 10am to 1pm and having lunch…… Your 3rd quarter includes working from 2pm to 6pm and then getting home…… And after one last break, you close the day with a final quarter from dinner until bedtime.
And by dividing each day into quarters – and having clear transitions between each one – you give your brain a chance to reset and start each section fresh. It’s like a relay race only you’re the one completing all four legs of the race!
And by tricking your brain into thinking that there are multiple new beginnings throughout the day, you get the momentum that comes with 4 fresh starts.Continue Reading
If you’re having trouble sleeping, here’s something that might help:
Try using sleep affirmations – where you pick a short, calming phrase like, “I am still,” or “I am relaxed” – and repeatedly think it or say it out loud.
Neuroscientist Dr. Tara Swart says repeating an affirmation is a form of meditation. It gives you something specific to focus on, and helps over-write recurring negative thoughts, silencing your brain.
Repeating an affirmation can also quiet the brain area responsible for self-evaluation and rumination, which reduces stress and anxiety. And when you put that all together, it improves sleep quality.
And there’s no right or wrong way to do it. You can sit quietly for 5 minutes, eyes closed, and repeat a phrase like “I am safe and secure.” Or simply repeat your chosen phrase silently while you’re getting ready for bed or lying in bed trying to fall asleep.
Your best bet? Focus on the words until your mind believes what you’re telling yourself. Because, if you get to the point where you BELIEVE you’re feeling calm and relaxed, you’re more likely to actually sleep.
The post What is Sleep Affirmation and Why You Should Use It appeared first on John Tesh.Continue Reading
Do you have a good listener in your life?
If so, it can keep your brain younger, longer! That’s according to new research from NYU. They found that having someone to confide in, who will really listen, is a huge stress reliever – AND it improves brain health by slowing cognitive decline.
The study focused on people in their 40s and 50s……and those who DID NOT have a supportive listener in their lives had a cognitive age 4-6 years OLDER than people who did have a good listener.
That’s because conversations are like a workout for your brain……You have to get your points across, think of responses, and absorb what the other person is telling you.
To find the right listener, psychologist Dr. Kiki Ramsey says you want to find someone who gives you space to respond without interrupting and shifting the focus to themselves.
Find that person and you can turn back the clock on your brain age!Continue Reading
Try this self-test to check your balance.
Act like you’ve been pulled over for a DUI and walk in a straight line, putting one foot directly in front of the other – with the toes of your back foot touching the heel of your front foot.
Neurosurgeon Dr. Nancy Trevanian Tsai says, see how many steps you can take like that without wobbling off center. If you can’t take more than 4 steps, your balance needs work.
So try standing in that same position – one foot directly in front of the other – and raise your hands high above your head. Hold that position as long as you can.
Because with good balance, you’re less likely to fall and injure yourself. And that’s important because 20% of elderly hip-fracture patients die within a year due to complications from the trauma.
You can also try tai chi. A study found that people who do tai chi once a week have much better balance.Continue Reading
If you find yourself so stressed out that you just can’t fall asleep, try this tip: Wiggle your toes for 60 seconds.
That’s a little do-it-yourself reflexology – a type of massage that triggers pressure points in the body to relieve tension and treat illness.
Reflexologists say that a good toe-wiggling helps release energy in the feet, and triggers a relaxation response that gradually spreads through the whole body……
You’ll be able to drift off quickly, and then stay asleep.Continue Reading