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Cancer Hacks: Tools & Services To Heal Your Mind, Body & Wallet

Cancer Hacks: Tools & Services To Heal Your Mind, Body & Wallet

Like many of you, my life has been touched or shall we say ripped wide open by cancer. Friends and family have survived and died from this misunderstood condition. I have cared for those close to me until their passing and shouldered the fear and feelings of bodily betrayal that most face after diagnosis and through treatment. I’m not here to dwell on the pain or the past, but to offer guidance, hacks and solutions to help and heal those who are affected, whether they are friends, family or have cancer themselves.

Cancer is NOT a death sentence!

Hope and, more importantly, belief in a body’s ability to heal even the most terrifying of conditions is critical to healing. Those who discover ways to believe will have endless hope and have the best journeys. Cancer is simply a body in distress. Remove the distress and often bodies heal themselves to the bafflement of Western medicine. Come with me and get the best cancer hacks around. Don’t just survive it, thrive from it! Add to this list with your best hacks in the comment section below this article and join the conversation.

Mind Hacks

Get your mind in the right place and feel good doing it. Part entertainment, part storytelling and part just good advice, the following resources will get those gears cranking.

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1. Soul Touching Stories

Healthy at 100 is a great place to start for understanding how amazing the human body is. Chicken Soup for the Soul has nothing on this book. I listened to it for healing after those close to me passed. I had developed an irrational fear that my body would betray me and this book, through its storytelling narrative of amazing journeys, reset my thinking and put my mind at ease.

2. New Medicine for A New Way of Thinking

Knockout is the true story and amazing journey of Suzanne Sommers. I admit I had never really paid attention to her career until this riveting and eye opening book. For those who want to avoid the chemo route and want to course towards fascinating alternative treatment methods, Suzanne guides you towards the types of specialists to seek and helps you understand the methodology and thinking behind some of the world’s best minds in alternative cancer treatment. Her personal story is just the icing on top! (and it’s an amazing story)

3. Putting it in Perspective

The eight irresistible Principles of FUN! This video always makes people smile. Many people can’t stop working and must balance work, research, and healing all at once. This would make any person cranky and overwhelmed. This vid will help take those common feelings of regret, pain, fear & frustration right off the menu so anyone can work AND be happy.

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4. Connectivity

Get connected and tap into the cancer treatment community. Tell your story or simply pour through others stories and pull out the good bits! This cancer forum will get you started and give you a place to reflect and vent. http://www.cancerforums.net/

Body Hacks

Now let’s focus on the body with these great ways to bring the physical into the equation by taking action. It’s surprising what a body can do when the mind feels a purpose.

1. Take Action

It’s hard to remember all of the details when you are in the midst of the experience. The free mobile app at Cancer.Net Mobile is an amazing way to track questions and notes for your doctor as well as gain access to a library to learn about over 120 types of cancer.

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2. Boot Camp

http://beatcancerbootcamp.com/ is a physical way to take action and hone the body and mind into a single, powerful unit to power you towards health. This site offers boot camps, outreach and has been featured on PBS and The Biggest Loser.

3. Yoga for Cancer

http://life.gaiam.com/article/cancer-survivors-thrive-yoga Read all about the softer side of movement that helps survivors through treatment and during recovery. There are so many inspiring stories and personal insights to help illuminate the mind-body connection for health.

Wallet Hacks

1. Crowd-funding for Treatment

http://www.donationto.com/ has free and paid fundraising accounts that let you personalize your own donation page and upload as many photos as you want. There are many stories on the site of families raising over $6,000 towards loved ones’ care. I did a similar thing on craigslist and asked for some educational video games for my niece who was born without kidneys and slipping in school because of all her treatments and dialysis. People give when you bear your heart and just have the courage to ask.

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2. Borrow Against Life Insurance

Life Credit Company is worth a look if you have a life insurance policy and are looking at bills piling up. This is a novel idea and great place to check out if you are having trouble paying bills but you have a policy behind you.

Beyond the Label of Cancer

It is my personal wish that every person who reads this sees beyond cancer as a label or an identity. If you are already there, then you are further than most. Dig in, trust your body, love your friends and family and thrive, don’t just survive.

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12 Best Brain Foods that Improve Memory

12 Best Brain Foods that Improve Memory

Nutrition plays a vital role in brain function and staying sharp into the golden years. Personally, my husband is going through medical school, which is like a daily mental marathon. Like any good wife, I am always looking for things that will boost his memory fortitude so he does his best in school.

But you don’t have to be a med student to appreciate better brainiac brilliance. If you combine certain foods with good hydration, proper sleep and exercise, you may just rival Einstein and have a great memory in no time.

I’m going to reveal the list of foods coming out of the kitchen that can improve your memory and make you smarter.

Here are 12 best brain foods that improve memory:

1. Nuts

The American Journal of Epidemiology published a study linking higher intakes of vitamin E with the prevention on cognitive decline.[1]

Nuts like walnuts and almonds (along with other great foods like avocados) are a great source of vitamin E.

Cashews and sunflower seeds also contain an amino acid that reduces stress by boosting serotonin levels.

Walnuts even resemble the brain, just in case you forget the correlation, and are a great source of omega 3 fatty acids, which also improve your mental magnitude.

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2. Blueberries

Shown in studies at Tuffs University to benefit both short-term memory and coordination, blueberries pack quite a punch in a tiny blue package.[2]

When compared to other fruits and veggies, blueberries were found to have the highest amount of antioxidants (especially flavonoids), but strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries are also full of brain benefits.

3. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are packed full of the antioxidant lycopene, which has shown to help protect against free-radical damage most notably seen in dementia patients.

4. Broccoli

While all green veggies are important and rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, broccoli is a superfood even among these healthy choices.

Since your brain uses so much fuel (it’s only 3% of your body weight but uses up to 17% of your energy), it is more vulnerable to free-radical damage and antioxidants help eliminate this threat.

Broccoli is packed full of antioxidants, is well-known as a powerful cancer fighter and is also full of vitamin K, which is known to enhance cognitive function.

5. Foods Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

Your brain is the fattest organ (not counting the skin) in the human body, and is composed of 60% fat. That means that your brain needs essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA to repair and build up synapses associated with memory.

The body does not naturally produce essential fatty acids so we must get them in our diet.

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Eggs, flax, and oily fish like salmon, sardines, mackerel and herring are great natural sources of these powerful fatty acids. Eggs also contain choline, which is a necessary building block for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, to help you recall information and concentrate.

6. Soy

Soy, along with many other whole foods mentioned here, are full of proteins that trigger neurotransmitters associated with memory.

Soy protein isolate is a concentrated form of the protein that can be found in powder, liquid, or supplement form.

Soy is valuable for improving memory and mental flexibility, so pour soy milk over your cereal and enjoy the benefits.

7. Dark chocolate

When it comes to chocolate, the darker the better. Try to aim for at least 70% cocoa. This yummy desert is rich in flavanol antioxidants which increase blood flow to the brain and shield brain cells from aging.

Take a look at this article if you want to know more benefits of dark chocolate:

15 Surprising and Science-Backed Health Effects of Dark Chocolate

8. Foods Rich in Vitamins: B vitamins, Folic Acid, Iron

Some great foods to obtain brain-boosting B vitamins, folic acid and iron are kale, chard, spinach and other dark leafy greens.

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B6, B12 and folic acid can reduce levels of homocysteine in the blood. Homocysteine increases are found in patients with cognitive impairment like Alzheimer’s, and high risk of stroke.

Studies showed when a group of elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment were given high doses of B6, B12, and folic acid, there was significant reduction in brain shrinkage compared to a similar placebo group.[3]

Other sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs, soybeans, lentils and green beans. Iron also helps accelerate brain function by carrying oxygen. If your brain doesn’t get enough oxygen, it can slow down and people can experience difficulty concentrating, diminished intellect, and a shorter attention span.

To get more iron in your diet, eat lean meats, beans, and iron-fortified cereals. Vitamin C helps in iron absorption, so don’t forget the fruits!

9. Foods Rich in Zinc

Zinc has constantly demonstrated its importance as a powerful nutrient in memory building and thinking. This mineral regulates communications between neurons and the hippocampus.

Zinc is deposited within nerve cells, with the highest concentrations found in the hippocampus, the part of the brain responsible for higher learning function and memory.

Some great sources of zinc are pumpkin seeds, liver, nuts, and peas.

10. Gingko biloba

This herb has been utilized for centuries in eastern culture and is best known for its memory boosting brawn.

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It can increase blood flow in the brain by dilating vessels, increasing oxygen supply and removing free radicals.

However, don’t expect results overnight: this may take a few weeks to build up in your system before you see improvements.

11. Green and black tea

Studies have shown that both green and black tea prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine—a key chemical involved in memory and lacking in Alzheimer’s patients.

Both teas appear to have the same affect on Alzheimer’s disease as many drugs utilized to combat the illness, but green tea wins out as its affects last a full week versus black tea which only lasts the day.

Find out more about green tea here:

11 Health Benefits of Green Tea (+ How to Drink It for Maximum Benefits)

12. Sage and Rosemary

Both of these powerful herbs have been shown to increase memory and mental clarity, and alleviate mental fatigue in studies.

Try to enjoy these savory herbs in your favorite dishes.

When it comes to mental magnitude, eating smart can really make you smarter. Try to implement more of these readily available nutrients and see just how brainy you can be!

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

Reference

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