acupressure and herbs for summer sniffles

With the sudden cool and wet weather around here this weekend, seems may people have a case of the sniffles. It's probably not a "cold" in the sense of a rhinovirus infection, and pollen levels are low; but the body can have a reaction to climatic factors that looks pretty damned similar. (There's a fancy word for it: vasomotor rhinitis, which means nothing more than "inflammation inside your nose from blood vessels opening up.") Chinese medicine, though, doesn't really care if there's a virus, allergen, or environmental factor involved; it's interested in how your body is responding.

Try the following acupressure points. Apply pressure slowly and gently. Poke around in the general area indicated to find the point that feels most responsive. If it hurts -- don't do it.

want to see clearly? Cut out the meat

In his blog at, Dr. Michael Greger reports on the link between plant-based diets and eysight: how just one serving of collard greens or kale per month can decrease the risk of glaucoma by 69%, and how cutting out meat can prevent cataracts:

The researchers conclude: “Overall, compared with meat eaters who consumed 100g meat and meat products/d[ay], fish eaters, vegetarians, and vegans had approximately 20%, 30%, and 40% lower risk of cataract, respectively.”

you are what you eat -- on a genetic level

"You are what you eat" is a well-worn cliche -- but it turns out to be true in a more direct way than most of us ever suspected. 80 beats reports on research showing that micro-RNA (miRNA) from the plants that we eat can enter the bloodstrean and affect the expression of our genes. It's yet another example of how epigenetics is shattering notions of genetic determinism and showing that inheritance is not destiny.

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