The Myth of the Holiday Blues

For many people, the holiday season inspires feelings of joy, gratitude and charity. For others, the added duties of shopping, cooking, wrapping and hosting lead to feelings of stress, anxiety and loneliness. (In, all likelihood, most people experience both happiness and increased stress levels in November and December.) [Read more…]

Philanthropy Is Good For You

You may have heard the buzz this week about Giving Tuesday, a nationwide movement to encourage Americans to donate to charities the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. Or maybe you came across an iconic bell ringer standing next to a bucket to collect donations at your local shopping center. [Read more…]

The Health Risks of Vaping

Since their debut in 2004, electronic cigarettes or e-cigarettes have steadily grown in popularity. Approximately 9 million U.S. adults regularly use e-cigarettes, and that includes a growing number of teenagers. In 2015, one in six high school students reported using an e-cigarette in the past month. [Read more…]

What Can We Do About Youth Homelessness?

Somewhere between 1 and 1.7 million youth under the age of 18 are homeless in the United States, with often destructive consequences.  Young people who experience homelessness are at high risk for a variety of physical and mental health problems, violence and early death. [Read more…]

The Complex Links Between Social Media and Mental Health

Over the past decade, social media platforms have completely transformed how billions of people interact with each other.  Of the 7.7 billion people on the earth, approximately 3.3 billion have at least one social media account. The average person spends nearly two hours a day on social media apps or web sites. [Read more…]

The Ripple Effects of Mass Incarceration

Approximately 2.3 million people are imprisoned in the United States in state and federal prisons, juvenile correctional facilities, local jails and psychiatric facilities.

While that number may seem staggering, what’s more surprising is the ripple effect of imprisonment. A study published this month found that 45 percent of all Americans have had an immediate family member spend time in jail or prison. That number jumps to 64 percent if extended family is included. [Read more…]

To Keep Your New Year’s Resolution, Make a Plan for Success

Next week’s New Year will bring the perpetual resolutions to lose weight, quit smoking, save money and exercise more, among others. New Year’s resolutions are popular – but few people actually succeed at keeping them. [Read more…]

The Evidence on Elder Wisdom

For most people, the approaching holiday season includes more time with the extended family, including the elder generation.

Unfortunately, older adults are often diminished in the popular media and by society as a whole; they are frequently portrayed as sick, frail, unproductive and behind-the-times. Yet there’s an expansive body of evidence that demonstrates the benefits of older adults’ wisdom and the value of fostering communication across generations. [Read more…]

What We Know About the Opioid Epidemic

On average, 115 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose—about five times more deaths compared to two decades ago. These drugs—which include prescription pain medications, heroin, and illegally manufactured Fentanyl—have a powerful and potentially dangerous effect on the brain.

[Read more…]

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…]

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