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					     Depression and Anger Affect the Immune
                     System
For older men, feelings of depression may weaken the immune system, new
research suggests. And anger seems to have a similar effect in both men and women
caring for a spouse.

People have traditionally looked at depression and stress with a one-size-fits-all
mentality. This view suggests that all stressors will apply equally to all people. But there
are certain groups, such as older men, who are more vulnerable to stress and
depression.

The researchers studied the relationship between anger, depressed feelings and the
immune system in 82 elderly individuals who cared for a spouse.

At the start of the study and 18 months later, the investigators evaluated the participants'
physical and psychological health, as well as their physical activity. Investigators also
measured how vigorously participants' immune systems responded to substances that
trigger the activation of cells called lymphocytes.

In men, feelings of depression were linked to a diminished immune
response. Most of the depressed feelings of men in the study arose not from actual
clinical depression but from feelings of loneliness, the report indicates. Older men may
be more reluctant to talk about their problems and tend to have fewer friends than older
women.

Some research has suggested that men's bodies are better equipped for dealing with
short-term challenges than long-term challenges.

Men typically experience bursts of stress hormones when faced with a
challenge, but this type of response may not be effective for dealing with chronic
sources of stress.

Although the relationship between depressed mood and immunity differed by gender,
higher levels of anger were linked to reduced immune function at the end of the study in
both male and females.

The combination of anger and chronic stress can result in reduced immune function.

Journal of Behavioral Medicine
    Perfectionism Reinforces Eating Disorders

                              College-aged young adults already concerned with their physical
                              appearance can have tendencies toward eating disorders reinforced
                              by perfectionist fathers.

                              A survey of more than 400 male and female college students
                              showed that fathers are more likely than mothers to create the kinds
                              of pressures that can lead to disordered eating, and eventually to
                              anorexia, bulimia and other problems.

Seventeen percent of the students surveyed exhibited eating patterns considered maladaptive,
including vomiting as a result of feeling uncomfortably full.

Personal perfectionism was also found to be more an issue in eating disorders than food itself.
Those who feel out of control of their lives and bodies may turn to eating as an area in which they
do have a sense of control.


                                A Technique For
                             Anger Management

Anger, the experts tell us, is more than an out-of-control emotion that disrupts lives and
relationships. Everyone understands how anger can lead to road rage, domestic abuse, and legal
problems -- but few of us appreciate how damaging anger is to our physical health.

Further, very few people yet understand how easily anger can be managed and dissipated through
Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT).

Our emotions trigger the release of a variety of chemicals that cause physical responses
throughout the body. The more often "anger chemicals" are released, the more their release is
reinforced, so that anger becomes an automatic response.

Some of us never outgrow the temper tantrums we had as toddlers. Psychiatrists and psychologists
refer to uncontrollable childhood or adolescent anger and aggression as "disruptive disorders,"
which can lead to school suspensions, frequent fights, drug use, illegal activities, hostility, and
violence.

These same behaviors often continue through adulthood, where they contribute to injuries and
serious illnesses. Some medical researchers attribute cancer and depression to the depletion of
energy that occurs when anger is directed inward, while they attribute heart disease, high blood
pressure, and other conditions to anger directed toward others.
Counselors usually turn to a patient's personal and medical history in order to study the psychiatric
disorders, medical or biological factors, undiagnosed learning disabilities, attention-deficit
hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), drug or alcohol abuse, past traumas, and other environmental
factors that may have contributed to the problem.

They use crisis management, time-outs, prescription drugs, and other prevention skills in
combination with individual counseling, family counseling, and group therapy to help hot-heads
of all ages bring their anger under control.

These are laudable goals, and these methods work well for some people -- with time, practice, and
perseverance. For many who use these approaches, even those who do so successfully, anger
management is a full-time job.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if something could neutralize the anger reaction so that it doesn't even
occur? Then instead of living a reactive life, in which all they do is react to situations around
them, people could reach their goals without being distracted by things that would normally send
them off in a rage.

For a small but growing number of anger management students around the world, that possibility
is not a remote daydream, it's an everyday reality.

Instead of the progress and moderate success rates claimed by conventional therapies, the
procedure they use works progressively claims an 80 percent success rate. One moderate
technique is a method of tapping with the fingertips on key acupuncture points, an unlikely
sounding protocol that subtly addresses the underlying causes of frustration, anger, and
impatience.

Their method an emotional version of acupuncture except that needles aren't necessary. Anger, as
it turns out, involves a disruption in the free flow of our energy meridians. We endorse a number
of accouterments in treatment that contribute to an individual’s gaining control of their emotions
in manners that can be used in daily living.

In addition to reducing or eliminating rage and anger, other techniques have been consistently
effective healing tools for hundreds of other physical, mental and emotional ailments.

Please consult qualified health professionals before putting techniques into practice for yourself or
others.

               Why do You Need Organic Food?
By Rachael Droege

The decision to purchase organic food over conventionally grown food is a personal one, and as
you walk through the supermarket, many of which are now adding organic sections, you will
likely ask the question: Is organic food really better?
Well, organic food is certainly growing in popularity, and the global sales reflect this having
increased over 10 percent to reach $23 billion in 2002.

The U.S. market is also expanding as consumers increase their demand for healthy and natural
products. U.S. organic food sales have increased from $3.5 billion in 1996 to more than $9 billion
in 2001.

Organic farming differs from conventional farming in the methods used to grow crops. Where
traditional farmers apply chemical fertilizers to the soil to grow their crops, organic farmers feed
and build soil with natural fertilizer. Traditional farmers use insecticides to get rid of insects and
disease, while organic farmers use natural methods such as insect predators and barriers for this
purpose. Traditional farmers control weed growth by applying synthetic herbicides, but organic
farmers use crop rotation, tillage, hand weeding, cover crops and mulches to control weeds.

The result is that conventionally grown food is often tainted with chemical residues, which can be
harmful to humans. There is debate over whether dietary exposure to pesticides at levels typically
found on food is dangerous, but experts say that consumers should use caution. The
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) considers 60 percent of herbicides, 90 percent of
fungicides and 30 percent of insecticides to be carcinogenic.

Pesticides can have many negative influences on health, including neurotoxicity, disruption of the
endocrine system, carcinogenicity and immune system suppression. Pesticide exposure may also
affect male reproductive function and has been linked to miscarriages in women.

Aside from pesticide contamination, conventional produce tends to have fewer nutrients than
organic produce. On average, conventional produce has only 83 percent of the nutrients of organic
produce. Studies have found significantly higher levels of nutrients such as vitamin C, iron,
magnesium and phosphorus, and significantly less nitrates (a toxin) in organic crops.

There is little question that organic foods are superior to non-organic ones. However, I see many
patients who are not eating any vegetables because they either cannot afford them or they are too
difficult to obtain.

Please understand that it is better to eat non-organic vegetables than no vegetables at all.

In the same vein, it is also important to realize that fresh non-organic vegetables will be better
than wilted and rotten organic vegetables that are occasionally the only ones available in smaller
organic produce stands. There are many highly perishable nutrients that degrade with time and
exposure to air and ultraviolet radiation. If the organic vegetables are seriously damaged then it
would be far wiser to eat fresh, undamaged non-organic vegetables.

Hopefully, as the demand for organic increases the prices will drop, and the supply will increase
making it far easier to obtain relatively inexpensive high-quality organic produce.

If you must buy conventional produce, there are ways to reduce your pesticide exposure.
Thoroughly washing all fruits and vegetables will help, although all pesticide residues cannot be
removed by washing. You can also remove the outer layer of leaves or peel vegetables if possible.
Another alternative is to grow your own vegetables, although this takes space, time and climate
considerations.

Another option is to buy organic produce selectively, as certain foods tend to have higher or lower
amounts of pesticides. The following foods tend to have the highest levels of pesticides (from
Environmental Working Group’s FoodNews.org):

                         Fruit                        Vegetables

                             1.    Peaches                   1.   Spinach
                             2.    Apples                    2.   Bell Peppers
                             3.    Strawberries              3.   Celery
                             4.    Nectarines                4.   Potatoes
                             5.    Pears                     5.   Hot Peppers
                             6.    Cherries
                             7.    Red Raspberries
                             8.    Imported Grapes


These foods tend to be lower in pesticide levels:

                           Fruits                    Vegetables

                                  1. Pineapples         1.    Cauliflower
                                  2. Plantains          2.    Brussels Sprouts
                                  3. Mangoes            3.    Asparagus
                                  4. Bananas            4.    Radishes
                                  5. Watermelon         5.    Broccoli
                                  6. Plums              6.    Onions
                                  7. Kiwi Fruit         7.    Okra
                                  8. Blueberries        8.    Cabbage
                                  9. Papaya             9.    Eggplant
                                  10. Grapefruit
                                  11. Avocado


In the case of organic foods such as grains and milk, you are better off avoiding these products all
together. Organic grain will disrupt your insulin levels just like ordinary grain, and organic milk is
pasteurized, which comes with its own slew of negative health effects. Your best bet may be to
simply avoid grains and choose raw milk instead.

AA&E Retreat provides dialectic and cognitive behavioral treatment. Call toll free 1-877-379-
care (2273) for more information.

				
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