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Newsletter Vol. # 44 That's how I see it!

 Hello and welcome to this week's newsletter.

What you will find in this week's newsletter: is it possible when we get old we could possibly get smarter? When we are Depression, it affects all aspects of our life; Listen Carefully you just might laugh yourself silly; some serious stuff about Insomnia and Diabetes; some theatre stuff.



A strong positive mental attitude will create more miracles than any wonder drug.
                                                                         Patricia Neal 


Getting Old - Getting Smarter!

Getting old?

Can't remember where you left your car keys?

Are you at the top of the stairs going up or coming down?

Well if you are in that age grouping known as Baby Boomers, you   certainly aren't going into old age quietly. Apparently you are now in an era where training programs for the elderly to reverse the effects of aging on the brain is coming into vogue.

Baby Boomers have had a tremendous influence on the economics of the 21st century. They also fear getting old and so have long contributed to the growth of the beauty industry, the physical fitness industry, the cosmetic industry, and several dozen magazine publications. Since 2006 Boomers are turning 50 at the rate of one every 7.5 seconds. Over the next 20 years 77 million will hit the half-century mark.

Dr. Michael Merzenich is the chief scientific officer for the Posit science program. He leads a team of fifty of the top brain scientists in developing non-invasive training programs to reverse age related cognitive decline. He states,
"We have a horrible situation now where we've figured out how to prolong the health of the body without prolonging the health of the mind. We have longevity, but because the mind lags behind the end is too often crap."

"It is estimated 23 percent of people over 65 have mild cognitive impairment and every year, roughly one-fifth have the Alzheimer disease. By 2030, according to the Alzheimer Association, nearly eight million adults will suffer from the disease in the US alone." (MacLean's)

The Baby Boomers grew up in the middle of a technological revolution. So it would make sense they would use the latest technology to make their lives better in their old age. The 90's saw the beginning of the "study of the brain" era (CAT scan, CT scan). The brain fitness industry began to challenge the brain as if it were a muscle. Sudoku and crossword puzzles popped up in every newspaper and many magazines, and were religiously adopted into people's daily routine to "keep the brain working." Self-help books abounded, vitamins and herbal tonics were taken to keep the brain healthy. Nintendo, Sony, and Bandai all have brain software to improve brain functioning.

Brain fitness is in the same spot that the physical industry was in 40 years ago. In the near future people will visit on-line brain gyms through devices like cell phones, iPads, etc. Most people will have a program they will be engaged in daily much like they have a gym membership. Brain centres will allow you to customize your brain workout. The pharmaceutical industry will not be far behind with their brain enhancing drugs to accelerate the preservation of your brain.


 

Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.
                                                                              World Health Organization


Depression

Everyone feels down at one time or another. Loss of a loved one, a poor career choice, or  a failed relationship - all can invite a person to feel down. Grief and sadness are normal reactions to life's stressful invitations. However time heals and we return to normal.

It becomes depression when the sadness just won't go away and it begins to interfere with daily life. "Depression manifests itself in anger, irritability, hopelessness, fear, anxiety, fatigue, numbness, confusion, worthlessness, or shame. A depressed person may also feel physically ill, weak, or in some cases experience hallucinations."(Nancy Schimelpfening, About.com)

Depression is a total package affecting thoughts, feelings and behaviours - all aspects of one'?s life.

Without proper medication and treatment people may choose to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol, overeat, harm self (cutting, burning), being sexually promiscuous, or withdraw from people.

Depression is about an imbalance in brain chemistry. The natural "upper drugs" (Serotonin, Dopamine, Norepinephrine) are produced less by the body when the individual perceives an event as distressful. That means that as the perceived stress level goes up, the body produces less of? the natural upper drugs, and ?the individual feels more? distressed.

Depression is treatable (not curable) with medication, exercise and talk therapy.


I don't know what your destiny will be, but one thing I know: The only ones among
you who will be truly happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve.
                                                                                         Albert Schweitzer



Always listen to the instructions...........


 A fellow walks into a bar, Notices a very large jar on the counter, and sees  that it's filled to the brim with $10 bills. He guesses there must be more than ten thousand dollars in it.

 He approaches the bartender and asks, 'What's with the money in the jar?' 'Well......you pay $10 and If you pass three tests, you get all the money and the keys to a brand new Lexus.'

The man certainly isn't going to pass this up. And so he asks, 'What are the three tests?' 'You must pay first... Those are the rules,' says the bartender.

So, after thinking it over a while, the man gives the bartender the $10 and the bartender drops it into the jar.' Okay,' the bartender says, 'Here's what you need to do:
           First - You have to drink a whole quart of tequila, In a minute or less, and you can't make a face while doing it.
           Second - There's a pit bull chained in the back with a bad tooth. You have to remove that tooth with  your bare hands.
           Third - There's a 90-year old lady upstairs who has never had sex....You have to take care of that problem!'

The man is stunned.' I know I paid my $10, but I'm not an idiot! I won't do it! You'd have to be nuts to drink a quart of tequila, and then do all those other things...'

'Your call,' says the bartender..... 'But, your money stays where it is.' As time goes on, and the man has a few more drinks, He finally says, 'Where's the damn tequila?'

 He grabs the bottle with both hands and drinks it as fast as he can. Tears stream down both cheeks... But he doesn't make a face, and he did it in fifty-eight seconds!

Next, he staggers out the back door, where he sees the pit bull chained to a pole. Soon the people inside the bar hear growling, biting, and screaming sounds... Then nothing but silence!

Just when they think that the man surely must be dead, he staggers back into the bar, with his shirt ripped open and there are scratches and he's bleeding all over his body.
 
He says, 'Now where's that old woman with the bad tooth?'


Insomnia

One in seven Canadians has trouble falling, or staying, asleep, according to Statistics Canada. Insomnia is more prevalent among those with preexisting health problems (such as arthritis or asthma), neither disease nor stress is a requisite factor. Sleeplessness is being considered a unique disorder, and prescriptions for drugs to combat it have risen as a result.

It is estimated that the global sleep disorder market, which already tops US $4 billion, will climb to more than ?$?11 billion within a decade. The number of young adults under 45 taking sleep aids in the United States doubled during the last decade. Still more dramatic is the increased use by young people aged 10 to 19, which rose by more than 85 percent.

The Harvard Women's Health Watch recently linked sleep deprivation to weight gain and hypertension, and noted that it can decrease the immune system's ability to ward off illness. Sleeplessness has also been cited as a trigger for depression. Happiness is affected by the quality of people's sleep-?more than by any other factor, including income.


Diabetes

Diabetes prevalence has tripled in the last 30 years! It seems that 20% of 50-year-olds, 40% of 60-year-olds, and 50% of 70-year-olds are on medication for hypertension, a precursor to diabetes.

The New England Journal Of Medicine stated that regular exercise and moderate alcohol use reduced the risk of diabetes in women, while poor diet and smoking increased the risk-even after adjusting for body mass index. Overall, 91% of the 3300 new cases of type II diabetes in the group could be attributed to these risk factors.


I saw an incredible performance on Thursday evening of Little Night Music by the Dry-Cold production company. This is a very difficult musical to do and they pulled it off wonderfully. The cast was terrific! Do not miss any future productions by this company.
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Jazz Festival is just around the corner-get your tickets.
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Have a great week!

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