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Category Archives: Communities Digital News

Earth Day to be celebrated world-wide on April 22, 2017

(image via flickr/Gletham)

(image via flickr/Gletham)

The first Earth Day occurred on April 22, 1970. It is estimated that on that day, 20 million Americans flocked to the streets in a massive demonstration to raise awareness and demonstrate their grave concerns for the negative
impact of the environment on Mother Earth.

What was notable about the first Earth Day was that it brought millions of Americans together in one resounding voice supporting a great cause, regardless of political affiliation, background, age, social status, education and the like.

Founded by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson, Earth Day gave rise to the establishment of the Environmental Protection Agency. The massive public outcry that built from this point eventually led to the passage of the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act.

There has been great progress in cleaning up the environment since the first Earth Day. The air is now cleaner to breathe, freeways are less damaging to the atmosphere due to lower tailpipe emissions, waterways are freer of dangerous pollutants, foods are labeled with detailed information about their contents and household cleaning products are becoming progressively greener and more easily available.

Read more on Laurie’s article at LifeCycles in the Communities Digital News

Red Alert: Your dinner plate color can increase what you eat

(Promotional image | Courtesy www.bellacor.com)

(Promotional image | Courtesy www.bellacor.com)

If you are trying to keep from overindulging in too many high-calorie treats or reduce your food intake, your choice of plate color could make a big difference.

A Boston University psychology study first published in 2004 found that eating food from a red plate could increase your calorie intake by 25 percent. That’s not what most of us want to hear when we are trying to keep that weight gain in check.

But researchers concerned about the poor nutrition of those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease turned this information to their advantage. Forty percent of these patients lose a dangerously unhealthy amount of weight. The researchers wondered if this information couldn’t be put to good use.

So Boston University bio-psychologist Alice Cronin-Golomb and her research partners conducted their own study in 2010. Sure enough, their findings confirmed the earlier study.

It turns out that the explanation is a very simple one. Progressive neurological diseases affect your vision in addition to your thinking and memory. People suffering from Alzheimer’s disease cannot process visual information like they used to. They lose depth perception and contrast.

Read more on Laurie’s article at LifeCycles in the Communities Digital News

Gifting live bunnies for Easter: Perks and responsibilities

(image via pixabay)

(image via pixabay)

Bunnies are easily trained to perform minor tricks, even to use a litter box. They make loving, quiet and adorable pets with a potential lifespan of 7, 10 or more years, making the lure of giving children an adorable live Easter bunny is easy to understand.

There is great potential for an Easter bunny to become a wonderful member of a loving family. All that said, however, parents must proceed with great caution when considering buying a live bunny for their son or daughter’s Easter basket.

As with most pets, the novelty of a new pet declines once the work begins. While they seem placid and easy-going, rabbits can be difficult and expensive to properly care for, and, just as kittens become cats, that baby bunny soon becomes an ever-growing adult.

The naturally timid nature of a domesticated bunny can also be problematic for children who might not be patient in letting their cottontails adapt to their new home. Remember, rabbits can’t yelp, bark or meow when distressed.

Read more on Laurie’s article at LifeCycles in the Communities Digital News

April is Autism Awareness Month: Hearing the voices of ASD

(design by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

(design by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

Wear blue in April to promote National Autism Awareness Month.

With the underlying theme of promoting awareness and acceptance, this year’s theme is to encourage friends and collaborators to become partners in a movement which fosters acceptance and appreciation, according to the Autism Society.

“Wanting to be free. Wanting to be me. Trying to make people see. And
accept the real me.”
-Scott Lentine

Autism Month is a great opportunity for members of the legislative, medical, healthcare, social services, educational, developmental disabilities communities combined with families, patients, and concerned individuals to gather across America in support of Autism.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that 1 in 68 children have autism spectrum disorder (ASD)

Read more on Laurie’s article at LifeCycles in the Communities Digital News

Stone fruit: Fresh, healthy and delicious

(photo by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

(photo by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

Peaches, plums and apricots are a beautiful sight to behold at any local grocer or farmer’s market.

The inspirational advent of spring brings a variety of glorious bounties from Mother Nature.

In addition to the springtime presence of an eclectic array of experiences, including frogs croaking, melodious birdsongs and colorful budding flowers, the season also provides a healthful selection of seasonal fruits.

Apricots are a golden yellow hue and are brimming with vitamin A. Additionally they contain potassium, protein and fiber.

Peaches are softly fuzzy and sweet, attracting eager buyers with their peachy hue. They contain vitamin A, potassium, protein and fiber.

Plums are a rich purplish color and contain vitamin A, potassium and small amounts of fiber.

What’s more, peaches, plums and apricots are all low in calories and contain fiber and sodium. They are also cholesterol-free.

There is much to appreciate and enjoy when a springtime recipe includes all of these spectacular fruits as main ingredients, ensuring a rich, delicious dessert that is also healthy.

Read more on Laurie’s article at LifeCycles in the Communities Digital News

Welcome spring with fresh seasonal superfoods

(image by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

(image by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

As the darkness and cold of winter comes to an end, new life begins to flourish and revel in the expanding sunlight bringing an abundance of seasonal foods making even the local grocery market a shopper’s paradise.

Some of the healthiest foods are available at this time of the year and health-conscious shoppers are eager to fill their grocery carts with the delicious and wholesome bounty of spring.

A superfood is a food product that can be included in a meal or eaten by itself while providing supplement-like benefits and Health.com highlights their top 10 superfood choices for spring.

Read more on Laurie’s article at LifeCycles in the Communities Digital News

Making a joyful noise: The beauty and sounds of birds

(photo by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

(photo by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

Springtime is almost here, and with it comes a variety of lovely birds joyfully singing in trees and building nests for their future young ones.

Many species of songbirds fly northward from faraway lands imbued with migratory passion.

Gracing humanity with their melodious symphonic sounds, North American songbirds call attention to the advent of springtime.

This predictable migratory event is fueled by their desire to find plentiful food supplies, suitable mates, and ideal nesting places for female birds to lay their eggs and tend to offspring.

According to Wikipedia, there are approximately 4,000 species of songbirds worldwide, with evidence suggesting they evolved over 50 million years ago.

Read more on Laurie’s column at LifeCycles in the Communities Digital News

The promise of rebirth: Looking ahead to springtime cleaning

(photo by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

(photo by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

With spring’s promise of rebirth and new beginnings, few can deny the experience of pure joy created by seeing melting snow, blossoming leaves, or blooming flowers and hearing the sound of nature’s melody created by birdsong, croaking frogs, or the wind in the trees.

Spring’s warmer days and increasingly brighter sunlight brings with the anticipation that there are new possibilities for enjoying more of everyday life.

According to Dr. John Sharp, in The Emotional Calendar,, there is an increase in metabolism and turnover of the neurotransmitters of the brain during spring, which provides the basis for spring fever and an increase in energy.

Read more on Laurie’s column at LifeCycles in the Communities Digital News

Being purpose driven is good for mind, body and soul

(photo by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

(photo by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

What is your purpose in life? Finding one’s life purpose gives meaning to existence and the motivation to create goals which accomplish it. It is what makes us reach for the stars!

Researchers are finding that having a higher purpose in life, extending beyond mere day-to-day survival, has major health benefits and could also provide protection against many forms of dementia.

Discovering what a true calling and purpose in life might be has been perceived by Dr. Jonas Salk, published in The Center for Spirituality and Healing, as “essential for all living beings.”

In fact, Salk stated that, “To have no calling, no responsibility, no hopes or aspirations, is to be outside of life.”

Read more on Laurie’s article at LifeCycles in the Communities Digital News

February is Heart Health Month: Give your heart some love

(photo by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

(photo by Sutton Porter/courtesy of Laurie Edwards-Tate)

Valentine’s Day may be over, but your ticker still needs some loving care.

A human heart requires nurturing, attention and care if it is to be healthy and fully functioning.

Heart disease is the number one killer of both women and men in the United States.

According to the United States Department of Health and Human Services, heart disease accounts for one out of every four deaths in the United States.

The proliferation of heart disease in the U.S. has been taken notice of by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, resulting in a plan of action to help eliminate it through the establishment of their Million Hearts initiative.

Determined to prevent 1 million heart attacks and strokes in the U.S. by 2017, they have begun their educational program with an emphasis on lowering blood pressure.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention focus on the signs and symptoms which cause high blood pressure due to their belief that it is a major cause of heart disease.

Read more on Laurie’s at LifeCycles in the Communities Digital News