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healthbriefs


Elderberry Elixir: Backyard Medicine Chest


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LESS SLEEP MEANS LOWER GRADES


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esearch presented in Minne- apolis, Minnesota, at the 25th anniversary meeting of the Associ- ated Professional Sleep Societies, suggests that poor sleep hygiene is associated with a lower grade-point average, both in high school and college. This can be prevented, ac- cording to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, by cultivating habits and behaviors that promote healthy sleep, such as establishing a relaxing bedtime routine and avoid- ing ingesting caffeine during the afternoon and at night.


Your children will see what you’re all


about by what you live rather than what you say.


~Wayne Dyer


ew research is turning up another natural remedy to mend what ails us. Native to both North America and Europe and historically appreciated by Hippocrates as “nature’s medicine chest,” elderberries are especially rich in antioxidants, putting them near the top of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) list. Both the flowers and fruit are used to make tea, juice, wine, preserves and nutraceutical products to treat a variety of ills. International herbalist James Duke, Ph.D., author of The Green Pharmacy, recognizes the elderberry’s age-old reputation as a remedy for viral infections and for treating cough, flu and tonsillitis. It’s even being studied for its activity against HIV and for regulating blood sugar. Researchers at the University of Missouri-Columbia are examining its potential for preventing strokes and prostate cancer, reducing inflammation and boosting resistance to infectious diseases. They’re set to host the first Inter- national Symposium on the Elderberry, from June 9 to 14, 2013. Terry Durham, a farmer and conservationist in Ashland, Missouri, describes elderberries—which are typically harvested in late August through early September—as “the superfruit in our own backyard.”


P Source: Acta Paediatrica


Cheap Bling is Bad News R


Source: HealthyStuff.org 8 Hudson County NAHudson.com


esearch from the Ecology Center, a nonprofit environmental organization, discloses that more than half of low-cost metal adult and children’s jewelry


contain large amounts of toxic chemicals, including lead, cadmium, nickel, chromium and chlorine (from polyvinyl chloride, or PVC). The report notes that these chemicals have been linked in animal and some human studies to acute allergies and long-term health impacts such as birth defects, impaired learning, liver toxicity and cancer. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, young children should not be given or allowed to play with cheap metal jewelry, especially when unsupervised.


COLORFUL PLATES FOR PICKY EATERS


arents trying to entice fussy eaters to sample more nutritionally diverse diets have a sur- prising strategy at hand: color. A study at Cor- nell University, in Ithaca, New York, has shown that colorful fare—specifically, food plates with seven different items and six colors—appear to


be particularly favored by children. In contrast, adults tend to prefer fewer colors on one plate—only three items and three hues.


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