What Do We Really Know About Mindfulness?

The concept of mindfulness is in the media constantly. We’ve written about it several times on the Evidence-based Living blog. Many people see meditation as a magic bullet that can reduce pain, relieve depression, and sharpen our focus. [Read more…]

The Evidence on Melatonin for Insomnia

If you have ever experienced insomnia, you know the agony of trying to fall asleep when your body simply will not cooperate. It is a common problem; an estimated 10 percent of people living in Western society are diagnosed with a significant sleep disorder and another 25 percent experience problems most days with sleeping or feeling tired during the day. [Read more…]

Do Firearm Laws Reduce Gun-Related Deaths?

The school shooting in Parkland, Fla. last month re-ignited the national dialogue on gun control.

Since the shooting, President Donald Trump has held a meeting with legislators on gun control, and Florida lawmakers passed a new law that raises the minimum age to purchase guns from 18 to 21, creates a waiting period for gun buyers, bans bump stocks, and other measures. Last week, students across the country staged school walkouts to honor the 17 victims and ask legislators to enact gun control laws. [Read more…]

Are Nutrition Labels an Effective Weapon Against Obesity?

Millions of Americans make goals to lose weight every year. Diet books, weight-loss apps, and meal supplements abound. But research shows changing our environments may have a more significant influence on our food choices, and ultimately our health. [Read more…]

Boost Your Health With a Pet

The saying “a dog is a man’s best friend” originated hundreds of years ago, but its sentiment continues today. Nearly 70 percent of U.S. households own a pet, according to the American Pet Products Association, with dogs and cats being the most popular. [Read more…]

New Evidence Finds Vitamins Are Often Unnecessary

Americans spend more than $36 billion a year on vitamins and nutritional supplements – all in the hopes for leading healthier lives. More than half of Americans take at least one vitamin a day, and millions take more than that. But do vitamins actually improve your health? [Read more…]

What Happens Children Care for Sick Loved Ones

Taking care of a loved one who is sick is never easy. But for children and adolescents, caring for a family member with a chronic illness can be especially taxing. [Read more…]

Meditation Does Not Make You a Better Person

Many people think of meditation as a magic bullet that can improve our health, sharpen our focus, and make us better people overall.

But in reality, the evidence on meditation is mixed. According to reviews by the Cochrane Collaboration, there is little evidence that mindfulness can help improve health problems such as fibromyalgia, anxiety, depression, and neck pain. There are some credible data that demonstrate meditation can improve risk factors for cardiovascular disease. And research on brain function shows that meditation can reduce feelings of pain. [Read more…]

New Evidence Links Sugary Drinks and Obesity

You have, no doubt, heard the statistics about obesity in the U.S: Nearly forty percent of adults and nineteen percent of youth are obese, the highest rate the country has ever seen, according to the most recent data from the National Center for Health Statistics. We hear all sorts of reasons why people gain weight such as too many sugary drinks, not enough physical activity, and a lack of access to healthy foods. [Read more…]

How The Flu Spreads

It’s shaping up to be one of the worst flu seasons in recent history, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, which tracks the flu virus nationally. (This interactive map provides a visual of this year’s outbreak.) So far this season, 20 children have died from the flu, according to the CDC. [Read more…]

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