Letter From The Publishers

Enjoying Each Step Along the Way

As we enter this gorgeous month of June, we celebrate 13 years of publishing Natural Awakenings magazine in the greater Ann Arbor area. We thank everyone in this wonderful community that has welcomed us with open arms from the first issue. It is a pleasure making so many friends with kind faces and hearts of…

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Local Articles & Spotlights

Overcoming Brain Fatigue

By Dr. Darren Schmidt

by Darren Schmidt Executives, salespeople, administrators and office workers may likely feel brain fatigue symptoms such as poor concentration, rubbing the temples or forehead, slow thinking, bad mood, apathy, lack…

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Avoid the Sunburned, Mosquito-Ridden Summertime Blues

By Emily Herron

by Emily Herron Summertime is beginning in Michigan; school is out and vacations are imminent. Summer is a wonderful time here in the mitten, but it does come with some…

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The Brain’s Most Important Joint

By Allison, Downing

When thinking about brain health, we may include nutrition, supplements, reading, doing memory training and exercising, but not healthy brain circulation. The foundation of strong brain functioning is circulation, and…

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Take Care of Your Walking Feet

By Natural Awakenings Publishing Corp.

Now that it’s spring, it’s time for a walk outside. Walking benefits us physically, mentally, and psychologically. It brightens our mood, gets circulation to the brain for mental acuity, moves…

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Discover the Key to Cellular Regeneration

By Natural Awakenings Publishing Corp.

K.WEST Skin Body Soul, Ann Arbor’s new luxury holistic spa located on North Main Street in a sophisticated, yet warm and inviting historic home, offers boutique treatments designed to support…

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Avoid Spring Wildlife Collisions

By Natural Awakenings Publishing Corp.

For many species of wildlife, this is baby season, and the time when vehicles accidentally injure and orphan millions of creatures. “We live in a community that loves nature and…

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News Briefs

Envisioning a Sustainable Ann Arbor

The annual Mayor’s Green Fair will be held on Main Street from 6 to 9 p.m., June 14, to celebrate the community environmental leadership exhibited by citizens, nonprofits, government and businesses. This year’s theme is Envisioning a Sustainable Ann Arbor. Main Street will be closed to through traffic between Huron and William streets, remaining open…

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Food Gatherers Grillin’ Benefit Fights Hunger

The 30th annual Food Gatherers’ picnic with a purpose will take place at 3 p.m., June 9. There is live music, kids’ activities, complimentary massages, a photo booth and more. Participants can bid on silent auction and raffle items. All proceeds go directly to support Food Gatherers’ mission of fighting hunger in Washtenaw County. One…

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Get Pain Out of the Body with Massage

Sherrel Wells, a medical massage therapist at Arbor Healing, says, “It takes just a half-hour to get the pain out of your muscles and feel good again. It’s a very short time to feel good.” She specializes in auto accident victims, slips and falls, and chronic injuries. Wells is offering massage at $75 per half…

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A New Place for Spiritual Learning

The Emerald Temple Healing Center is a beautiful new space located at 6223 Sharon Hollow Road, in Manchester, for events that nurture growth, well-being and learning. Their mission is to offer experiences that vitalize the bodies, illuminate the minds and inspire the souls of those growing in spirit. It is a meeting place for the…

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Getting Back into the Swing of Life After Cancer

Nonprofit Grass Lake Sanctuary (GLS) will host a Women’s Wellness Retreat for Breast Cancer Survivors from July 19 through 21. Christine Morgan, GLS women’s wellness retreat coordinator, says, “For nine years, women that have recovered from breast cancer have been learning life-balancing skills and experiencing the transformative power of connecting heart-to-heart with other cancer survivors…

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Yoga Fest in the Northern Woods

YogaFest will take place from July 25 through 28 at Morning Yoga Retreat, in the northern woods of Michigan’s lower peninsula. It is a nourishing, joyful and spiritually authentic celebration of spirit, nature, community, service and all things yoga. There are workshops and discussions of beginner, intermediate and advanced levels covering subjects ranging from the…

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Ann Arbor Summer Festival

The Ann Arbor Summer Festival includes programs across the University of Michigan campus and downtown Ann Arbor. The indoor Mainstage series includes performances of world-class music, dance, theater and comedy. Top of the Park offers admission-free concerts, movies under the stars, open-air spectacles and unique family attractions. The Summer Festival is transforming into a zero-waste…

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Aunt Alberta’s Remedy Relieves Arthritis Pain

Aunt Alberta’s Remedy eases muscular aches and joint pain. This homeopathic pain relief cream penetrates deep into the skin and muscle tissues for relief from sciatica, fibromyalgia, arthritis, neuralgia, gout and more, using all natural ingredients that include oil of wintergreen, iodine and castor oil. The remedy combines oil of wintergreen with Atomidine iodine, a…

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Shakespeare in the Arb

The 2019 Shakespeare in the Arb play is Twelfth Night, Shakespeare’s story of love and identity that contains some of the Bard’s most well-loved speeches and songs. Performances will take place at 6:30 p.m., June 6 to 9, 13 to 16 and 20 to 23. Shakespeare in the Arb is unique in the way the…

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Outdoor Fertility Therapy Benefits Mind and Body

Kathleen Nelson, LMSW, ACSW, GC-C, is hosting a five-week Nature & Nurture Fertility support group for those experiencing infertility struggles, which includes support, conversation, snacks and an outdoor walk. It begins at 6 p.m., May 5, at Washtenaw County Farm Park, and will become an ongoing event. She says, “Infertility treatments are often difficult, and…

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Health Briefs

Household Cleaning Products Affect Babies’ Guts and Weight

The heavy use of household cleaning disinfectants may contribute to changes in infant gut bacteria and weight gain, reports a new study in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. University of Alberta researchers collected fecal samples and studied the gut health of 757 babies between the ages of 3 and 4 months; then restudied the children…

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Herbs Make Worthy Prebiotics

Ginger, black pepper and holy basil, mainstays in traditional medicines as anti-inflammatories, also contain significant prebiotic potential that could help gut health, report researchers from India’s National Institute of Nutrition, in Hyderabad. Holy basil (Ocimum sanctum) and ginger (Zingiber officinale) showed significantly higher prebiotic activity, especially of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium species, when compared to the…

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Pine Bark Soothes Prostate

Benign prostate hypertrophy (BPH), a condition that affects half of men older than 60, is related to increased prostate land size and a reduced flow of urine from the bladder. To test the effectiveness of the pine bark extract Pycnogenol on BPH, researchers from Italy’s D’Annuncio university divided 75 men with the condition into three…

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Zyto Biofeedback Records Subtle Changes

The ancient Chinese discovered that there is a vital life force energy flowing through the body. They called this vital force chi. They also found that there are 12 life energy meridian lines that flow through the body that transport energy between different organs and systems of the body thus keeping the body in harmonious…

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Meditation and Music Slow Cellular Aging

Meditating or listening to classical music altered biomarkers associated with cellular aging and Alzheimer’s disease in adults experiencing memory loss, according to a recent West virginia university study. The 60 participants had subjective cognitive decline, including forgetting familiar names and losing objects, a condition that may be a preclinical stage of Alzheimer’s. For 12 minutes…

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Vegetables and Orange Juice Protect Memory

A Harvard study was conducted on the diets of nearly 28,000 male health professionals spanning two decades between their 50s and 70s and published by the American Academy of Neurology. It found those that drank orange juice and ate leafy greens, berries and dark orange and red vegetables suffered significantly less memory loss than others.…

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Lemon Balm Lowers Blood Pressure, Reduces LDL

Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis), a soothing herb from the mint family, can significantly improve the condition of patients with chronic stable angina, reports a recent study in the Journal of Herbal Medicine. Researchers at Iran’s Ahvaz Jundishapur university of medical Sciences tested 80 patients with the condition, which involves chest pain linked to a lack…

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Rose Hip Reduces Cold Symptoms

During the six months of Denmark’s frigid winter, 107 study volunteers took either two grams of liquid rose hip (marketed as Hyben vital) or a placebo daily. university of Copenhagen researchers found that the rose hip group experienced 18 percent fewer colds, as well as significantly fewer symptoms such as coughing, headache, muscle stiffness and…

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Light Pollution Disturbs Sleep

Being exposed to high levels of artificial outdoor light at night contributes to insomnia and greater use of sleeping pills, reports a new study from South Korea’s Seoul National university College of medicine. The researchers studied the records of 52,027 people without diagnosed sleep disorders—60 percent of them women—and correlated their sleeping pill use with…

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Ashwagandha Normalizes Hypothyroid Levels

Ashwagandha, a traditional ayurvedic herb, can significantly improve symptoms of subclinical hypothyroidism, a condition that affects many women, a new double-blind clinical study shows. Researchers from India’s Sudbhawana Hospital tested 50 patients that had high circulating thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) levels. For eight weeks, half were given 600 milligrams a day of ashwagandha; the other half…

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Global Briefs

Norwegian Nudge

Countries Learn from Recycling Strategy In Norway, up to 97 percent of the country’s plastic bottles are recycled, and other countries are taking ote. The government’s environmental taxes reward companies that are eco-friendly. If a company recycles more than 95 percent of its plastic, then its tax is dropped. Customers pay a deposit on each…

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Aqua Breakthrough

Clean Water Solution in the Pipeline With the world facing a future of climate change and water scarcity, finding an environmental way to cleanse drinking water is paramount. Researchers in China contend they are working on a method to remove bacteria from water that’s both highly efficient and environmentally sound. By shining ultraviolet light onto…

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Green Surfing

Search Engine Company Plants Trees Internet users can help fight global deforestation even while surfing. German online search engine Ecosia, now used in 183 countries, diverts its advertising revenue from click-throughs to planting trees worldwide to the tune of more than 52 million since 2009. With each search, the company says, it removes around two-and-a-…

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Far Out

Earth’s Atmosphere Extends Past Moon The scientific boundary between Earth’s atmosphere and space is the Kármán line, 62 miles high. But a team of astronomers have published evidence in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Space Physics that the geocorona, a tenuous cloud of neutral hydrogen in the outermost region of the Earth’s atmosphere that glows…

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Hopper Stopper

Endangered Frogs Keep Millions of Acres as Habitat A federal court has dismissed a lawsuit challenging the protected status of 1.8 million acres of critical California mountain habitat for the Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frogs and the mountain yellow-legged frogs, species that have declined by 90 percent, and Yosemite toads. In 2017, a year after the…

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Revamping Recycling

China Forces U.S. Cities to Change Specs China, one of the world’s main importers of recyclable waste, is rejecting shipments that are more than 0.5 percent impure, so loads contaminated by a greasy pizza box, disposable coffee cups and the odd plastic bag could end up in the local landfill instead. Most single-use cups, for…

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3-D Meat

Printer Produces Plant-Based Substitute Researcher Giuseppe Scionti, owner of Nova Meat, in Barcelona, Spain, has developed a synthetic meat substitute using vegetable proteins that imitate protein complexes found in real meat. Produced using a 3-D printer, it can mimic the texture of beef or chicken. The specialist in biomedicine and tissue engineering has been working…

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Hatching a Record

Avian Senior Citizen Astounds Again Being at least 68 years old didn’t deter Wisdom, a Laysan Albatross, from recently hatching another chick. The world’s oldest known banded wild bird, which roosts at the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge, in Hawaii, has birthed and raised more than 30 chicks in her lifetime. She and her mate-for-life…

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Bear Blitz

Climate-Challenged Polar Bears Invade Town About 50 polar bears that usually hunt seals from ice floes have found new cuisine in the garbage dumps in the remote Russian island military town of Belushya Gubam, about 1,200 miles northeast of Moscow. Its 2,000 residents, long accustomed to the occasional bear strolling through, now call it a…

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Dim Prospects

Light Bulb Standards Weakened Higher federal standards for energy-efficient light bulbs established two years ago are in the process of being rolled back by the U.S. Department of Energy, part of a move toward widespread deregulation by the current administration. Consumers stand to lose about $100 per household per year in electric bill savings if…

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Eco Tips

Mold Matters

Kill It Naturally Heavy rains, leaky pipes and floods can lead to mold growth, which can create poor and even toxic indoor air quality. Irritating the eyes, skin, nose, throat and lungs of both moldsensitive and nonallergic people, mold can also cause immediate or delayed respiratory symptoms; some can be extremely severe in individuals prone…

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Skip the Slip

Digital Receipts Gain Momentum Compared to newspapers, magazines and junk mail, retail sales receipts may seem inconsequential in their use of trees and their footprint on the environment. Yet, getting and handling that tabulation of a sale is a health hazard that contributes to landfills. Certainly, some receipts are required for tax records and product…

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Healthier Dry Cleaning

Non-Toxic Ways to Lower Risks Chemicals used in dry cleaning clothes have long been linked to health concerns for both people and the environment. Perchloroethylene (“perc” for short) is most commonly used in this process. Federal regulatory agencies have documented myriad negative effects from exposure to the petroleum-based solvent. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health…

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Tips for a Tree-Free Home

Many Ways to Pare Down Paper Use If one in five households switched to electronic bills, statements and payments, the collective impact would save 151 million pounds of paper annually, eliminating 8.6 million full garbage bags and 2 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions, according to the PayItGreen Alliance. While computers continue to offer significant…

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Breathe Easy

Ways to Improve Indoor Air Quality For much of the country, winter means spending more time indoors—and exposed to potential toxins. Indoor air quality is critically important to children, the elderly and people with respiratory problems that may be especially sensitive to pollutants, according to WebMD.com. Recognizing and avoiding some of the most common sources…

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Action Alert

Action Alert

Banish Toxic Air in Plane Cabins Flying safety is more than making it to our destination; it’s about the air we have to breathe while in the skies. Toxic fume events can occur when air, contaminated by engine exhaust, fuel fumes, de-icing fluids and/or ozone, enters the aircraft cabin through the jet engine intake. Exposure…

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Save the Cranes

Natural Resources Commission to Designate Sandhill Cranes as a Game Species One hundred years ago, Michigan’s sandhill crane population was near extinction due to hunting and diminishing wetland habitats. The bird’s population recovered at a very slow pace and still remains vulnerable. Now, the Michigan Senate Natural Resources Committee has voted to pass SR 30,…

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On the Brink

Monarchs Need Species Protections Being listed as part of the Endangered Species Act would protect monarch butterflies. In the 1980s, about 4.5 million butterflies spent winters along the California coast. This season’s stay is shaping up to consist of only about 30,000. Fully 99 percent of the species listed under the Endangered Species Act of…

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Support Citizen Action Against Plastics

Every minute, the equivalent of an entire garbage truck of plastic gets dumped into our oceans, reports the World Economic Forum. Many of the materials are disposable, single-use plastic products like straws, bags and Styrofoam containers, which some cities and towns have banned. This type of citizen action is increasingly blocked by the Plastic Industry…

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Youth Climate Strike Coming to U.S.

Demanding immediate action, students are taking part in climate strikes around the world, and on March 15, young activists in the U.S. will add their voices to the escalating #FridaysForFuture movement. It was bolstered in January by 16-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg, of Sweden, calling for the first global climate strike while attending the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Action in this country is being…

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