Why Good Nutrition and Physical Fitness Is Vital to Good Health?

Health, nutrition and fitness are the three interrelated areas that determine an individual’s sense of happiness and well being.

Health
Health involves the physical, mental and spiritual levels of the individual. A physically healthy person is one who can carry out normal daily physical activities and respond to emergencies with out undo fatigue or pain. The health part of health, nutrition and fitness is achieved through a balanced program of good nutrition, healthy physical activity, continuous education and mental activities, and social and spiritual activities. Your choices of the food you eat and your physical activities affect both your short term and long term health (how you feel now and in the future). You may be getting plenty to eat, but if it is not a proper balance of choices from all five of the basic food groups you may be adding fat to your body without generating the energy to burn the calories and energy to the cells to carry out their functions. Healthy physical activity helps burn off any excess calories you consume, and keeps muscles and joints flexible and strong. Your efforts of continued education (reading, attending seminars, as well as attending formal education classes), and spiritual activities (social activities, attending devotional services, meditation, etc) provides you with a sense of accomplishment and well being. An important part of good health is being physically fit and maintaining proper body weight. Maintaining good health requires following a nutritional diet, and exercising to build and maintain muscles, and to burn of any excess calories.

Nutrition
The nutritional health part of health, nutrition and fitness deals with the food we consume to maintain our health and provide energy to carry on our daily lives. Nutrition is the process of nurturing or being nourished; the total of all the processes that a plant or animal uses to take in and process food substances to maintain a healthy life. A healthy nutrition life style requires a balanced diet of food selected from the five basic food groups, fruits, vegetables, naturally calcium rich dairy products or calcium enriched products, whole grains, and protein (lean meat fish, peas and beans). Other nutritional factors should also be considered. Most fruits and vegetables are better if they are consumed raw because heating destroys some of the healthy nutrients. Steaming and broiling food is better than boiling or frying foods. Preparing fresh fruits and vegetables is better than processed or prepared foods.

The prepared foods generally contain more salt (sodium) than necessary and other flavor enhancing substances. Some of these additives do not add any nutritional value to the food and may even be harmful to your health. More nutritional factors to consider are the variety of the fruits and vegetables in our diet. Nutritional data shows that dark green vegetables (romaine lettuce, kale, broccoli, etc.), and orange vegetables (carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkin and summer squash) provides more nutritional value than some of the less colorful vegetables. Here are even more nutrition facts. Some foods contribute to burning fat. Green tea contributes to fat burning by increasing the body’s metabolism and increasing energy level. Foods high in protein are more difficult to digest so they require more calories in the digestive process. Good nutrition practices may not be sufficient for some people they may require unique supplements such as CoEnzimeQ10 or others.

Physical Fitness
Physical fitness part of fitness, health and nutrition is the ability to carry out daily activities, enjoy leisure activities and have a healthy immune system to resist disease and infection. Developing and maintaining good physical fitness requires a balance of good nutrition and varied physical exercise. There are there elements to physical fitness: specific fitness the ability to perform daily functions related to work or recreation, general fitness the ability to enjoy leisure time and a sense of peace with the environment, preparedness the ability to over come or avoid emergencies.

There also three factors in achieving good physical fitness good nutrition, physical exercise and restful (sleep). The nutrition maintains the health of the cells and provides the energy to perform the exercises. Physical exercise may be used to accomplish work to earn a living, participate in athletic events, develop and maintain healthy cardiovascular system, or control body weight. Physical fitness and how physical fitness is achieved varies depending on individual. If a person is involved in an occupation that requires vigorous activity and has good nutrition possibly no other exercise is needed to maintain a fit body.

However, even people who are who work hard at their occupation may need additional cardiovascular exercise to keep their heart and blood vessels in optimum condition. People whose profession does not require vigorous physical exercise special effort is required to achieve and maintain physical fitness. A good nutritional diet is the obvious starting point. Some easy things are use stairs rather than elevators, park a little farther from the office or store entrance, throw away the television remote, change channels the old fashion way, and walk to near by offices or neighbors rather than using the telephone. These efforts will help, but more vigorous physical exercise is needed for good physical fitness.

For cardiovascular health a routine of physical exercise over a period a minimum of 20 minutes three times per week is required. The best and generally most convenient cardiovascular exercise is walking. Another good cardiovascular exercise is swimming. Swimming will also help in building and toning muscles. The other factor in developing and maintaining physical fitness is strength exercise to build and tone muscle and to burn fat. Strength exercises are good for weight management because they stimulate muscle growth even after the exercise has been completed. This means that the body continues to burn fat for an extended period of time.

Mental Health
Mental health, as it applies to health nutrition and fitness, is the way we think, how we feel and how we act as we interact with our surroundings. Our mental health contributes to our relations with other people, how we make decision, make choices and how we cope with stress. People with good mental health are able to control their emotions, feelings and behavior. Keeping the mind active through reading, playing games, and an active social life contributes to good mental health.

Spiritual Health Spirituality can be defined as sensitivity or attachment to religion, or as a state condition of being spiritual. Some people ignore or overlook the importance of spirituality in relation to health nutrition and fitness, because they relate spirituality only to religion. Through out history man has struggled with the concept of spirituality. Basically spirituality is the struggle to become the most perfect person or individual. The path to achieve this goal may be through seeking external help through religion of some form, or internal through meditation and study of both present and past human interactions. The above is based on personal study, experiences and observations through out my life.

The Health Care Evolution – Ten Trends That Can Revitalize Nursing

Nurses are at the forefront of an evolutionary wave in health care. Whether we take leadership or not will determine nursing’s future.These ten trends can revitalize nursing if nurses break free from the confines of the medical model and use their education and skills to become wave riders.1. Aging Boomers
Boomers are living longer. Quantity of life is driving a desire for better quality of life. This generation wants to learn how to stay vital, mobile, healthy and productive. They are looking for guidance in health promotion and wellness, not only disease prevention and treatment.2. A 2nd Boom
Boomers Grandchildren are driving a huge demand for family health information and support for new and working moms. From birthing to family health education and sick child care, family systems need and want professional advice and innovative strategies to raise a brighter, stronger next generation.3. Information explosion
Internet access provides health consumers with tons of information, but not the knowledge or wisdom to know how to use it without getting confused. They need knowledgeable health professionals as gatekeepers, trusted advisors, or health system navigators.4. Holism
People are increasingly spending out of pocket dollars for alternative and complementary health care. Nursing education focuses on systems, whole person, life cycle perspectives that can guide in selecting appropriate options along a continuum of care.5. Consumer driven health care
As consumers rely less on employer health coverage and more on personal health spending, they are seeking innovative and home based solutions for care including advanced home monitoring, telephone consultation, personalized care, and individualized treatment.6. High Tech – High Touch
The need for personal connection, listening, and caring has never been higher. Nurses consistently rank first in every consumer poll for most trusted professional.7. Shortages and Cost Containment
Professional shortages and a drive to contain costs, creates a push to use mid-level and low-level providers for technical care. Nurses will continue to be driven away from the institutional bed side. With decreasing numbers of people in institutional care, face to face professional health care will be delivered in the home and community.8. Accessibility
Health information and care will be delivered on a global, mobile, remote, phone and internet basis. Nursing phone advice lines are increasingly popular with consumers.9. Back to Basics
With increased interest in information and coaching on proper food and nutrition, supplements, stretching, meditation, simplicity, life balance, joy in work, and relationships wellness and health coaching is a growing field.10. Self-Care/Self-Responsibility
People are realizing that doctors, medication and illness care are not going to keep them well. Employers, third party payers and common sense are driving consumers to take health care into their own hands. This trend will continue to drive an increase in self care information and reduction in in-patient and long term care.Tomorrow’s nurses are not working under a doctor’s direction, or in an institution. To remain viable, nursing will have to think beyond the institutional medical care box.Consumers are desperate for professional nurses to fill the need for proactive community
and home based health care.Tomorrow’s nurses will be innovative community health leaders, who develop and deliver services directly meeting the changing needs of health consumers.Progressive, professional nurses will form cooperatives, and creative health delivery systems that support families throughout the life span. They will provide continuity of health information and care while supporting people to navigate an ever more specialized and complex techno-medical system.Grab A Board – Surfs Up!© Aila Accad, RN

New Perceptions In Art Through Neuroscience Research

THE PERCEPTION OF ARTIf we go to an art gallery, we react to the artwork in many ways. We may feel mildly interested, quite interested, entranced, inspired. Or we might feel bored, disinterested, mildly disturbed, upset, aggravated or even, enraged. Without knowing about how to look at art, its history, or what is behind the meaning of what we are looking at, our reactions are subject to our own personal feelings. If we had taken an art appreciation class or studied about art history, we would have a different perception; a knowledge of how the art developed and where we could place it in the timeline of art development today.Art education– knowing art movements, timelines, developments, what motivated artists of the past personally and sociologically, will alter our perspectives and change the way we see art. For example, if we know nothing of Picasso, looking at one of his Cubist paintings may cause us shake our heads and walk away, perplexed. How could that chopped up vision of a human being be attractive and meaningful? But if we had read about Picasso during his Cubist period and knew that the colors he used were monochromatic and architectural for a reason, that Picasso was dealing with translating natural rounded forms to geometrical, flattened forms and that these images would inspire a new era of contemporary painting-then would we see Picasso’s Cubist paintings differently?Yes. For many of my Art Appreciation students, a paradigm shift and expansion of their skills of perception occurred. And in most cases, they learned how to enjoy art within a new context of understanding: a broader visual and historical, information-rich understanding.But now, there is additional knowledge in neuroscience that has shaken the foundation of these studies of Art Appreciation and Art History.A NEW ART APPRECIATIONVery recently, within the last decade, the perception of art has been studied by scientists and, especially, neuroscientists, that look at how neurons in our brains respond to various stimuli, including the visual, and especially, art.These studies are just surfacing to the public through various publications, and altering our ideas of how we perceive art. Those of use who were linked to their own personal perceptions of art, as well as those (like me) who have studied and taught the subjects of Art History and Art Appreciation, have been altered indelibly by these new neuroscience studies.Is this research making Art Appreciation and Art History so very different? Yes. From a neuroscientist’s point of view, we are, indeed, hard wired in our brains for seeing things in a certain way and the art we have manufactured for thousands of years, has been gauged to our neural response to the images we have created.The ultimate realization of this new neuroscience research is that the global art market has its roots in this understanding-not that anyone selling art since the Jurassic has gauged their sales on neuroscience, but has been inadvertently in line with the knowledge that some visual images appeal more than others. How many other global markets can begin to equate and calculate their sales according to this new technology?WHAT IS NEUROAESTHETICS?A new and interesting science is developing in the perception of art why we like what we see, and how the art market responds to our visual desires. Neuroaesthetics, is a new definition of perception which V.S. Ramachandran, a noted neuroscientist, writes about in his recent book, “The Tell-Tale Brain,” As a scientist researching many areas of neuroscience, he says, “Science tells us we are merely beasts, but we don’t feel like that. We feel like angels trapped inside the bodies of beasts, forever craving transcendence.” And he adds, this is the human predicament in a nutshell. He responds to our need for a higher being and sees that our ancient profile as human beings gives evidence to this.Ramachandran offers a new perception on what makes art, why we like what we see and what the art market uses to develop the value of artistic work. He establishes a premise that looks at how we see art in a new way. Through his research in brain-response situations, he has developed a profile of how and why art is attractive to us.WHAT ARE MIRROR NEURONS?Mirror neurons in our human brains are unique in that we can empathsize (feel the way they do) with our fellow humans in a way that animals or any other species can’t. In the development of our brains over thousands of years, we have become aware of not only ourselves as an image we keep in our brains (the knowledge and image of self) but also how we can manufacture a trail of history, make our own personal data album and autobiography that we can play back for our reference to relive tender memories, anxious moments, challenging situations, and terrible, sad events. Because we are knowing our own selves, we can record our personal histories in great detail in our brains and use these historical memories as resources for our development (or demise, if we get depressed or chronically affected by our negative past.)A NEW PERCEPTION OF ARTV.S. Ramachandran’s research and creation of neuroaesthetics has entered the world of Art History and Art Appreciation and is changing the perspective of art history.. Prior to his studies, art historical research, which became the study and research of Art History, was established in the early 19th century. A profile and timeline of art development was developed which gave credible history to the development of painting, and sculpture basically in the Western world.These studies gave a picture to the academic community of the development of art from the cave paintings to contemporary art in Europe and America. In the American academic world, Art History 101, the child of Art History development and has been the prime educational subject on the history of art until the present.THE GLOBAL COMMUNITYThis Art History outline presently taught in most academic environments, rich with documentation, often has a narrow view of historical creative endeavor in that it is not global and so to meet the needs of a rapidly expanding world, the study of Art History has to be updated to include many the creative cultures of many other civilizations including Africa, Indonesia, Asia, China, Russia and beyond.The view from the science community echoes an interest and need for many areas of study to go ahead into the future. What studies in neuroscience define for us is our global link as humans hard wired to see our creative development in a new and different way. For all of our accumulated wealth in the sciences, the link to other cultural resources has been a detriment to our development as a nation and a global linking with other cultures. Science has always had its strengths in objectivity, observation and empirical judgment. Within an ever-expanding world of knowledge, it is necessary for every source of research to spread unrestricted into other sources so that the total spectrum of knowledge will be enriched and therefore, benefit the global community.