The health benefits of being nice:
How practicing random acts of kindness promotes happiness.

Health benefits of kindess

Not long ago I was running some errands and just before returning home I stopped by Starbucks and went through the drive-through to grab a coffee drink. There was a long line and I was in a hurry to get back on the freeway before the afternoon traffic. You have to beat the rush before 3:30 p.m. at this particular location, or you are in for bumper-to-bumper traffic for the next 25 miles. I was getting a little edgy and wished the line would hurry up a bit.

When at last it was my turn, I reached out my hand to give the young man at the window my $10 bill to pay for my cappuccino but he didn't take my money. Instead he said, "The lady in the car in front of you already paid for your drink."

Excuse me! I looked at the car pulling out of the driveway and I didn't recognize it. I asked the young man to explain to me why she had paid for my coffee. He answered, "No reason that I know of, except maybe as an act of kindness."

SHOP Amazon's Top 100* Best Selling Vitamins & Nutritional Supplements
+ Free Shipping & Returns on Eligible Items.
(*Amazon's Top 100 list updated hourly.)

When I finally had my coffee in hand and I moved toward the freeway, I noticed a smile on my face and my mood was definitely lifted. By this time the traffic had already poured onto the freeway, but I was able to spend the next 30 minutes in bumper-to-bumper traffic enjoying my coffee and listening to some great songs on the radio.

Practicing acts of kindness
Wherever you are at this moment, right now is the perfect time to participate in Random Acts of Kindness. This activity is a selfless act performed by a person or persons wishing to either assist or cheer up an individual. There will generally be no reason other than to make people smile, or to bring them a moment of happiness.

I remember some years back stopping at a fast-food restaurant to get myself a quick lunch to go. I was starved and couldn't wait to get in the car and take my first bite. I was surprised to encounter a very dirty beggar in that neighborhood as I walked across the parking lot to my car. He came up to me and asked for some spare change... or some food. My immediate response was, "I don't have any extra change." Then I quickly remembered he also asked for food. I looked at the bag in my hand and knew what I had to do. I handed it over to him and said, "Maybe this will help." As I walked back into the restaurant to order again I was aware of a lift in my step. It felt good.

No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. ~ Aesop

Research does bear out that giving to other people, rather than to ourselves, does indeed benefit us. A 2008 study published in Science magazine found that "spending more of one's income on others predicted greater happiness."

In remembering these and a few other acts of kindness, I thought to myself, I wonder what would happen if all of us spent time this week or even this month looking for ways to practice random acts of kindness on family, friends, neighbors and strangers? What stories would we have to share with each other?

Let's do it! Let's do something special for others, be creative and make someone's day!

Excerpt from VITAJOURNAL, February 2011. Judy Ellison, Ph.D., is a psychologist, author and motivational speaker. She has inspired people around the world to reach within and find their passionate purpose to live a more meaningful life.


From the Maui Health Research Desk...

Over a dozen fast, simple ways to eat healthier foods (and enjoy every bite)
easy ways to eat more vegetables

There is no better time than right now to start making informed food choices and developing sound eating and exercise habits.

To help put more healthy "color" in your daily diet, the American Dietetic Association (ADA) offers these tips to enjoy fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat/fat-free dairy products.

  1. Enjoy your pizza topped with broccoli, spinach, green peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms and zucchini.
  2. For a sweet and healthy sauce on grilled or broiled seafood or poultry, puree berries, apples, peaches or pears.
  3. Whip up a breakfast smoothie with low-fat milk, frozen strawberries and a banana.
  4. Have whole-grain rice left over? Heat it up with chopped apple, nuts and cinnamon.
  5. Make a veggie wrap with roasted vegetables and low-fat cheese rolled in a whole-wheat tortilla.
  6. Instead of chips, try crunchy vegetables with your favorite low-fat dip or salad dressing.
  7. Grill colorful vegetable kabobs of tomatoes, green and red peppers, mushrooms and onions.
  8. Banana split: top a sliced banana with a scoop of low-fat frozen yogurt.
  9. Brighten up salads with baby carrots, grape tomatoes, spinach leaves or mandarin oranges.
  10. Prepare instant oatmeal with low-fat/fat-free milk instead of water.
  11. Make an omelet a meal by stuffing it with broccoli, squash, carrots, peppers, tomatoes or onions with low-fat sharp cheddar cheese.
  12. Wake up to fruit. Add it to your morning oatmeal, cold cereal, yogurt or toaster waffle.
  13. Enjoy "nature's fast food:" raw vegetables and fruits that are cleaned, fresh and ready to eat.
  14. Stuff a whole grain pita with ricotta cheese and apple slices; add a dash of cinnamon.

Broccoli: a vegetable for all seasons

Broccoli is a rich source of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber. Developed from wild cabbage in ancient Roman times, broccoli made its way to the U.S. in colonial times, brought over by Italian immigrants. However, its popularity didn't really take off until the 1970s. By 2005, Americans were eating 5.6 pounds of broccoli per person every year.

When choosing broccoli at the store or farmers market, look for firm stalks and florets that are tightly closed and green. Keep in mind that if you overcook it, you won't get the health benefits; overcooking can leach the nutrients out of it.nutritional benefits of broccoli A study in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture found that steaming broccoli is the best way to preserve its nutrients; microwaving is the worst way to prepare it.

Probably the only bad thing you'll hear about broccoli is that it can be odiferous when cooked. But don't let that deter you from enjoying this health-enhancing, delicious treat.


Tips for enjoying the outdoors...

What's the best treatment for sunburn?

You already know it, but we're going to say it again anyway: Preventing a sunburn is much safer and less painful than treating one.

SHOP NOW for Low Prices on Amazon's Top 100* Best Selling Skin Sun Protection
+ Free Shipping & Returns on Eligible Items.
(*Amazon's Top 100 list updated hourly.)

Despite our best intentions, however, most of us will suffer from some degree of sunburn. When this happens, here are tips for minimizing the sunburn damage and discomfort: both the heat injury to the skin and the radiation damage to our skin's protective, outer layer. (The goal is to get the skin cool and keep it from drying out.)

1. Press gently on the skin with a wet, cool washcloth (cool compress) or take a cool shower.

treatment for sunburns

2. While your skin is still wet, apply an alcohol-free moisturizer (or the gel from a filleted aloe vera leaf) to lock in the moisture. Don't use salve, butter or ointment

3. You can take Tylenol to minimize the pain or Ibuprofen to treat both the pain and inflammation.

4. Avoid additional sun exposure and do not burst blisters if they appear.

5. Sunburned infants under 1 year of age or anyone who is experiencing a fever or severe pain should seek medical attention.

Low Prices on Best Selling VITAMINS &
SUPPLEMENTS

SHOP NOW AT AMAZON

spacer
A Sampling of Today's Health News Headlines
L.A. Times - Health
L.A. Times - Health

04/23/2024 06:00 AM
How L.A. County is trying to remake addiction treatment — no more 'business as usual'

A Los Angeles County initiative called Reaching the 95% aims to engage with more people than the fraction of Angelenos already getting addiction treatment.


04/22/2024 04:19 PM
Delta Burke looks back on 'Designing Women' exit, and using crystal meth to lose weight

Delta Burke explains why she moved back to Florida decades after being fired from 'Designing Women': The business was killing her and she 'didn't want to die in L.A.'


04/19/2024 06:00 AM
Taylor Swift's new album is rife with breakup songs. Psychologists explain why we love them

Taylor Swift's new 'The Tortured Poets Department' album draws inspiration from her own breakups. What attracts us to songs about failed relationships?


04/18/2024 09:00 AM
Newsom calls for increased oversight of local homelessness efforts

The call to ramp up accountability is the latest example of Newsom pointing at local governments for the failure to lessen homelessness, which has only worsened in his tenure.


04/17/2024 04:47 PM
Author Sophie Kinsella reveals that she's had brain cancer since 2022: 'All is stable'

'Confessions of a Shopaholic' scribe Sophie Kinsella reveals she was diagnosed with glioblastoma in 2022. Since then she's had surgery, radiation and chemo.


04/17/2024 12:41 PM
Kate Beckinsale's 'Tummy Troubles Survivor' shirt hints at ailment that hospitalized her

Kate Beckinsale wore a T-shirt emblazoned with 'Tummy Troubles Survivor,' an apparent reference to the mystery medical issue that hospitalized her in March.


04/17/2024 06:00 AM
He wasn't a crier, but then his wife died — and the tears wouldn't stop. How one father found his way forward

When bereavement books didn't help Warren Kozak, he decided to write his own. Only after he was done did he realize that his book about loss was really a book about love.


NYT > Health
NYT > Health

04/23/2024 05:01 AM
Abortion Data Wars: States and Cities Debate How Much Information to Collect
Some states with Republican-controlled legislatures want more data, while some controlled by Democrats want less, fearing it could be used to target patients or providers.
04/22/2024 01:25 PM
Bird Flu Is Infecting More Mammals. What Does That Mean for Us?
H5N1, an avian flu virus, has killed tens of thousands of marine mammals, and infiltrated American livestock for the first time. Scientists are working quickly to assess how it is evolving and how much of a risk it poses to humans.
04/20/2024 10:18 AM
Scientists Fault Federal Response to Bird Flu Outbreaks on Dairy Farms
Officials have shared little information, saying the outbreak was limited. But asymptomatic cows in North Carolina have changed the assessment.
04/21/2024 08:27 PM
‘Aging in Place, or Stuck in Place?’
Homeownership is not the boon to older Americans that it once was.
04/20/2024 10:16 AM
Some Older Women Need Extra Breast Scans. Why Won’t Medicare Pay?
Mammography can miss tumors in women with dense breasts, so their doctors often include ultrasound or M.R.I. scans. Patients often wind up paying the bill.
04/19/2024 11:00 AM
Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders Often Go Untreated for Parents on Medicaid
Among those with substance use disorders who have been referred to child welfare, less than half received medication or counseling.
04/18/2024 03:41 PM
Heat-Related ER Visits Rose in 2023, CDC Study Finds
As record heat enveloped the nation, the rate of emergency room visits increased compared with the previous five years, a sign of the major health risks of high temperatures.
04/18/2024 11:22 AM
Millions of Girls in Africa Will Miss HPV Shots After Merck Production Problem
The company has told countries that it can supply only 18.8 million of the 29.6 million doses it was contracted to deliver this year.
NPR Topics: Health
NPR Topics: Health
Health
04/23/2024 06:30 AM
Sleep training: Life preserver for parents or "symptom of capitalism"?
The raging debate over how to juggle kids and work.
04/23/2024 05:13 AM
The U.S. has a new heat warning system called HeatRisk
About 1,200 people die from extreme heat each year. As temperatures soar, the CDC is unveiling plans to help people deal with potentially record summer heat.
04/23/2024 05:01 AM
Talks for a plastic pollution treaty are stalling. Could the U.S. be doing more?
Critics say the U.S. has been unwilling to push for measures in a global agreement that would drive big cuts in plastic waste.
04/22/2024 08:10 PM
How hot is too hot? New weather forecasting tool can help figure that out
Released on Earth Day, the federal government's new "HeatRisk" tool can help people assess when heat goes from uncomfortable to dangerous.
04/22/2024 10:01 AM
Oncologists' meetings with drug reps don't help cancer patients live longer
Drug company reps commonly visit doctors to talk about new medications. A team of economists wanted to know if that helps patients live longer. They found that for cancer patients, the answer is no.
04/22/2024 08:30 AM
How two good friends became sworn siblings — with the revival of an ancient ritual
Thousands of years ago, there was a ceremony to bind close friends together as sworn siblings. Could the practice be resurrected today to strengthen modern friendships? Two women did just that.
04/22/2024 07:43 AM
Why haven't Kansas and Alabama — among other holdouts — expanded access to Medicaid?
Only 10 states have not joined the federal program that expands Medicaid to people who are still in the "coverage gap" for health care
04/22/2024 05:01 AM
A cheap drug may slow down aging. A study will determine if it works
Studies suggest people who take metformin for diabetes may be at lower risk for cancer, heart disease and dementia. Now researchers aim to test if it prevents age-related diseases in healthy people.
 
Copyright 2024 MauiHealth.com. All rights reserved. rss Subscribe to our RSS
Information provided here should not be relied on to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any condition, disease or illness. Please consult with your physician or health care professional for guidance on any health concern. MauiHealth.com is a commercial website and is not affiliated with any government agency, university, or private medical center. COMPENSATION DISCLOSURE: This site may be compensated for products promoted here. Read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.