Fearless in the Face of Cancer

Note from Sunlighten: We’re grateful to Alison Gannett for sharing her amazing story and hope to bring light and hope to others battling cancer of all kinds. An extreme ski pro, Alison Gannett spent much of her life speeding down steep mountainsides on two skis with alertness and skill to adjust to every surprise nature put in her path as she blazed her own trail down the snow-covered slopes. She went where others had not gone; she did things no one else had done. When an unexpected diagnosis forced an abrupt stop to save her life, of course she harnessed that same spirit to surmount a health obstacle, …

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What’s Your Sweat Fingerprint?

Everyone sweats differently. We all have our own unique way of sweating. That’s why when you start using a sauna, it can feel confusing. You may find yourself wondering, “How much should I expect to sweat?” “Why am I not sweating much?” “Why am I sweating so much?” “How do I know it’s working?” “Why do I sweat differently than my friend or family member?” Sweat Genetics Just like we all have a unique pattern of lines and ridges that create our fingerprints, every person has a different arrangement of sweat glands throughout their skin. This unique pattern creates your …

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Feeling Better from the Ground Up: Natural Relief from Pain, Inflammation and Stress

As adults, going barefoot may feel counterintuitive and maybe even silly at first. But a solution, or at least help, to reduce some of our modern health concerns can be found for free in nature! What if simply kicking off your shoes could offer some relief from pain and stress? Going barefoot feels like childhood…playing in the backyard, running through sprinklers, catching fireflies. As adults, going barefoot may feel counterintuitive and maybe even silly at first. But a solution, or at least help, to reduce some of our modern health concerns can be found for free in nature! Grounding, also …

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5 Ways Infrared Saunas Can Help Ease Rheumatoid Arthritis Pain

Infrared sauna therapy can be used to assist people living with a range of degenerative diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, which can cause many side effects, including pain, stiffness, fatigue, and joint destruction. Many people who have been diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis are told that without strong medications, like disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs), systemic corticosteroids, and painkillers, there is no way to ease the signs and symptoms, let alone hope to halt its progress.  However, many of these drugs can cause profound side effects, including weight gain, osteoporosis and fractures, cardiovascular disease, digestive problems, pain and nausea, increased risk of infection, …

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Top 5 Mental Health Benefits of Infrared Saunas

If you’ve experienced any degree of depression or anxiety in the past pandemic year, you are not alone. In January 2021, a staggering 41 percent of adults reported symptoms of anxiety and/or depressive disorder, a number that has been largely stable since spring 2020.[1] In a normal year, 4 percent of us suffer from persistent depression and general anxiety disorder.[2] May is the month designated to draw our attention to mental health awareness. Our mental health impacts everything–how we think, behave, and interact with the world and the people in our lives. It can skew our perspectives and hold us …

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Rethinking How We Incorporate Wellness & Work

Wellness activities are no longer luxuries or something we do before or after work. As we see the light at the end of the tunnel with the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s one thing we can all feel good about: it seems we no longer have to feel guilty about taking care of ourselves while we work. Both employees and employers now expect it. Earlier this year, Deloitte declared the end of “work-life balance.”[1] Salesforce declared the end of the 9-to-5 workday.[2] Microsoft Japan embraced a 4-day work week boasting a 40% productivity increase.[3] According to Deloitte’s Human Capital Trends report, “Well-being was …

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How Lymphatic Massage Helps Your Body Detoxify

Lymphatic massage can help our bodies detox. It can be a great option for anyone looking to lovingly assist the body in its own natural detox and immune function. If you have had any prolonged exposure to chemicals at work or in daily life, if you suffer from a range of ailments from lymphedema and swelling to bloating, lymphatic massage can help reduce swelling and when paired with the infrared sauna, can release toxins from the body that could have harmful effects on your health. Because lymphatic massage is different from more-familiar muscle massages, it’s important to understand what it …

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10 Ways to Leverage Light and Darkness for a Better Night’s Sleep

Sleep deprivation is a problem. More than one out of every three adults in the United States aren’t getting enough sleep, according to the Centers for Disease Control; and just as many struggle with daytime sleepiness and falling asleep each night. Sleep deprivation is at an all-time high, and worldwide Google searches for “sleep hygiene” have been increasing since 2008. In 2020, these searches reached their highest yearly peak ever. In other words, people want to know how to sleep better, and they’re prepared to make changes to do so. Nevertheless, sleep medicine is still a comparatively young field in academia, …

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Back to the Basics: Why We Should Eat Like Our Ancestors

About 2.5 million years ago, humans were evolving anatomically and physiologically, adapting to climate change, learning to use stone tools, and cooking meat using fire. Our ancestors literally ate to live—they didn’t live to eat. Their diets consisted of fundamental foods they could find nearby—vegetables, fruits, meat (wild game), seafood, and water. For centuries, humans thrived on this type of diet, hunting and gathering the plants, fruits, and small game available. But with the advent of the industrial revolution, diets began to morph into something unrecognizable to our Paleolithic ancestors. We started to eat ultra-processed, low-cost, readily available foods—think cakes, …

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The Real Story About “Good” and “Bad” Cholesterol

I’ve lost 50 pounds on the Virgin Diet! My cholesterol is looking much better, but my LDL is still higher than normal. What should I do? A podcast listener recently asked me that question, and it’s a perfect illustration of how the cholesterol conversation has changed. A generation ago, patients only heard whether their cholesterol was high or low. Now, most people understand there’s actually “good” and “bad” cholesterol, and your annual physical measures both HDL and LDL. But what exactly do those tests mean? Living in the Wild West Cholesterol travels through your bloodstream in little packages called “lipoproteins.” …

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