Veterans statistics: PTSD, Depression, TBI, Suicide.

veterans statistics

The following veterans statistics are from a major study done by the RAND Corporation (full pdf of study), a study by the Congressional Research Service, the Veterans Administration, the Institute of Medicine, the US Surgeon General, and several published studies.

PTSD statistics are a moving target that is fuzzy: do you look only at PTSD diagnosed within one year of return from battle? Do you only count PTSD that limits a soldier’s ability to go back into battle or remain employed, but that may have destroyed a marriage or wrecked a family? Do you look at the PTSD statistics for PTSD that comes up at any time in a person’s life: it is possible to have undiagnosed PTSD for 30 years and not realize it–possibly never or until you find a way to get better and then you realize there is another way to live. When you count the PTSD statistic of “what percentage of a population gets PTSD,” is your overall starting group combat veterans, veterans who served in the target country, or all military personnel for the duration of a war?

And veterans PTSD statistics get revised over time. The findings from the NVVR Study (National Vietnam Veterans’ Readjustment Study, in Four Volumes) commissioned by the government in the 1980s initially found that for “Vietnam theater veterans” 15% of men had PTSD at the time of the study and 30% of men had PTSD at some point in their life. But a 2003 re-analysis found that “contrary to the initial analysis of the NVVRS data, a large majority of Vietnam Veterans struggled with chronic PTSD symptoms, with four out of five reporting recent symptoms when interviewed 20-25 years after Vietnam.” (see also NVVR review)

There is a similar problem with suicide statistics. The DoD and their researchers tend to lose track of military personnel once they retire, and do not track veteran suicides for all branches of the military (see September 2015 New York Times articles on Marine suicides and a battalion-wide suicide epidemic). And, not all suicides will be counted as a military suicide (plus, is a person who drinks themselves to death committing suicide?). A recent study found U.S. veteran suicide rates to be as high as 8,000 a year. See suicide statistics (below and bottom of Suicide Prevention page).

Summary of Veterans Statistics for PTSD, TBI, Depression and Suicide

  • As of September 2014, there are about 2.7 million American veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars (compared to 2.6 million Vietnam veterans who fought in Vietnam; there are 8.2 million “Vietnam Era Veterans” (personnel who served anywhere during any time of the Vietnam War)
  • According to RAND, at least 20% of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans have PTSD and/or Depression. (Military counselors I have interviewed state that, in their opinion, the percentage of veterans with PTSD is much higher; the number climbs higher when combined with TBI.)
    Other accepted studies have found a PTSD prevalence of 14%; see a complete review of PTSD prevalence studies, which quotes studies with findings ranging from 4 -17% of Iraq War veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder).
    A comprehensive analysis, published in 2014, found that for PTSD: “Among male and female soldiers aged 18 years or older returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, rates range from 9% shortly after returning from deployment to 31% a year after deployment. A review of 29 studies that evaluated rates of PTSD in those who served in Iraq and Afghanistan found prevalence rates of adult men and women previously deployed ranging from 5% to 20% for those who do not seek treatment, and around 50% for those who do seek treatment. Vietnam veterans also report high lifetime rates of PTSD ranging from 10% to 31%. PTSD is the third most prevalent psychiatric diagnosis among veterans using the Veterans Affairs (VA) hospitals.”PTSD and comorbid AUD”Subst Abuse Rehabil. 2014; 5: 25–36, Ralevski, et al.
  • 50% of those with PTSD do not seek treatment
  • out of the half that seek treatment, only half of them get “minimally adequate” treatment (RAND study)
  • 19% of veterans may have traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Over 260,000 veterans from OIF and OEF so far have been diagnosed with TBI. Traumatic brain injury is much more common in the general population than  previously thought: according to the CDC, over 1,700,000 Americans have a traumatic brain injury each year; in Canada 20% of teens had TBI resulting in hospital admission or that involved over 5 minutes of unconsciousness (VA surgeon reporting in BBC News)
  • 7% of veterans have both post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury
  • rates of post-traumatic stress are greater for these wars than prior conflicts
  • in times of peace, in any given year, about 4% (actually 3.6%) of the general population have PTSD (caused by natural disasters, car accidents, abuse, etc.)
  • recent statistical studies show that rates of veteran suicide are much higher than previously thought, as much as five to eight thousand a year (22 a day, up from a low of 18-a-year in 2007, based on a 2012 VA Suicide Data Report). (See suicide prevention page). Contrary to the impression many media articles give, veteran suicide rates, although definitely higher, are not astronomically higher than civilian rates. See New York Times 2013 article, “As Suicides Rise in US, Veterans are Less of total,” by James Dao.
  • PTSD distribution between services for OND, OIF, and OEF: Army 67% of cases, Air Force 9%, Navy 11%, and Marines 13%. (Congressional Research Service, Sept. 2010)
  • recent sample of 600 veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan found: 14% post-traumatic stress disorder; 39% alcohol abuse; 3% drug abuse. Major depression also a problem. “Mental and Physical Health Status and Alcohol and Drug Use Following Return From Deployment to Iraq or Afghanistan.” Susan V. Eisen, PhD
  • Oddly, statistics for veteran tobacco use are never reported alongside PTSD statistics, even though increases in rates of smoking are strongly correlated with the stress of deployment and combat, and smoking statistics show that tobacco use is tremendously damaging and costly for soldiers.
  • More active duty personnel die by own hand than combat in 2012 (New York Times)
  • According to September 2015 New York Times articles, some branches of the military do not keep fine-grained data, or any data at all on the suicide rates (and this must mean on the mental health as a whole) of their veterans. There are “battalion epidemics” of suicide in the military, which much higher rates of suicide and mental health problems.

Veterans Statistics: References and Resources

NOTE: This work is NOT my own, and was found at the following link-http://www.veteransandptsd.com/PTSD-statistics.html.

 

How Meditation Can Help Protect The Body After Cancer

how meditation can help protect the body

By Carolyn Gregoire

Mindfulness meditation is known to have a positive emotional and psychological impacton cancer survivors. But some groundbreaking new research has found that meditation is also doing its work on the physical bodies of cancer survivors, with positive impacts extending down to the cellular level.

Practicing mindfulness meditation or being involved in a social support group causes positive cellular changes in breast cancer survivors, according to researchers at the Alberta Health Services and the University of Calgary.

“We already know that psychosocial interventions like mindfulness meditation will help you feel better mentally, but now for the first time we have evidence that they can also influence key aspects of your biology,” lead researcher Dr. Linda Carlson of the Tom Baker Cancer Center at Albert Health Services, said in a statement.

Publishing in the journal Cancer, Carlson and team found that telomeres (DNA sequences at the end of chromosomes) were longer among a group of breast cancer survivors who had a mindfulness practice or participated in a support group, compared to survivors who didn’t have these interventions.

Telomeres are pieces of DNA at the end of every cell’s chromosomes that protect the integrity of its genetic information. As cells divide, telomeres shed some of their length. In other words, telomeres shorten with age and are often associated with diseases such as cancer. Telomere length is also associated with breast cancer outcomes, reported the researchers, and longer telomeres are generally considered a sign of good health.

The researchers tested a group of 88 breast cancer survivors, at an average age of 55 years old, who had completed their treatment a minimum of three months earlier (although most had been in recovery for two years). All women who took part in the study were experiencing significant emotional distress.

The group that took part in Mindfulness-Based Cancer Recovery attended eight 90-minute weekly sessions with instruction in meditation and gentle yoga, and were asked to practice 45 minutes of meditation and yoga at home each day. The Supportive Expressive Therapy group participated in 12 90-minute weekly group support classes, in which they were encouraged to share their emotions freely and seek support from other women. The control group attended one six-hour stress management seminar.

All participants had their blood analyzed and telomeres measured before and after the interventions, and participants in both the mindfulness and support group interventions were found to have longer telomeres. Carlson says that it was surprising to see any changes at all in telomeres after such a short test period.

While there was no statistically significant difference in telomere length between participants in the mindfulness and the support group interventions, mindfulness training had more extensive psychological benefits, which Carlson and colleagues reported on in a 2013 paper.

So how is it that psychosocial practices can have physical benefits that extend down to the cellular level? Carlson explains that mental and emotional states have an effect on the body’s biomarkers, particularly signs of stress.

“We have known for a long time that psychological states affect biomarkers in the body,” Carlson said in an email to The Huffington Post. “For example, depression is associated with inflammation in the immune system and heart disease, and stress results in activation of cortisol and other stress hormones, and increases susceptibility to the common cold and other viruses. How exactly this makes its way specifically down to the telomeres in the cells is currently unknown, however. It is a topic of much interest for researchers in this area.”

Previous research on the physical impacts of mindfulness practices have also found that meditation can limit the expression of genes associated with inflammation.

Carlson’s new study joins a growing body of research which has demonstrated mindfulness practices to have significant positive impacts for cancer patients and survivors. Meditation has been found to lessen some symptoms associated with cancer in teenagers, and it may reduce pain among children with cancer. Among survivors of breast cancer specifically, mindfulness meditation has been found to improve physical and emotional well-being.

This original article can be found in its entirety when you follow this link-http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/11/05/mindfulness-meditation-cancer_n_6101130.html.

World-First Evidence Suggests That Meditation Alters Cancer Survivors’ Cells

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For the first time, scientists have found clear biological evidence that meditation and support groups can affect us on a cellular level.

FIONA MCDONALD 8 NOV 2014

We’re often told that being happy, meditating and mindfulness can benefit our health. We all have that one friend of a friend who says they cured their terminal illness by quitting their job and taking up surfing – but until now there’s been very little scientific evidence to back up these claims.

Now researchers in Canada have found the first evidence to suggest that support groups that encourage meditation and yoga can actually alter the cellular activity of cancer survivors.

Their study, which was published in the journal Cancer last week, is one of the first to suggest that a mind-body connection really does exist.The team found that the telomeres – the protein caps at the end of our chromosomes that determine how quickly a cell ages – stayed the same length in cancer survivors who meditated or took part in support groups over a three-month period.

On the other hand, the telomeres of cancer survivors who didn’t participate in these groups shortened during the three-month study.

Scientists still don’t know for sure whether telomeres are involved in regulating disease, but there is early evidence that suggests shortened telomeres are associated with the likelihood of surviving several diseases, including breast cancer, as well as cellular ageing. And longer telomeres are generally thought to help protect us from disease.

“We already know that psychosocial interventions like mindfulness meditation will help you feel better mentally, but now for the first time we have evidence that they can also influence key aspects of your biology,” said Linda E. Carlson, a psychosocial research and the lead investigator at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre, in a press release. She conducted the study alongside scientists from the University of Calgary.

“It was surprising that we could see any difference in telomere length at all over the three-month period studied,” said Carlson. “Further research is needed to better quantify these potential health benefits, but this is an exciting discovery that provides encouraging news.”

As part of the research, 88 breast cancer survivors who had completed their treatment more than three months ago were monitored. The average age of the participants was 55, and to be eligible to participate in the study they all had to have experienced significant levels of emotional distress.

They were separated into three groups  – one was asked to attend eight weekly, 90-minute group sessions that provided instructions on mindfulness meditation and gentle yoga. These participants were asked to practice meditation and yoga at home for 45 minutes daily.

The second group met up for 90 minutes each week for the three months, and were encouraged to talk openly about their concerns and feelings.

The third control group simply attended one six-hour stress management seminar.

Before and after the study, all participants had their blood analysed and their telomere length measured.

Both groups who attended the support groups had maintained their telomere length over the three-month period, while the telomeres of the third group had shortened. The two groups who’d attended the regular meetings also reported lower stress levels and better moods.

Although this is pretty exciting research, it’s still not known whether these benefits will be long-term or what’s causing this biological effect. Further research is now needed to find out whether these results are replicable across a larger number of participants, and what they mean for our health long-term.

But it’s a pretty huge first step towards understanding more about how our mental state affects our health. And it’s part of a growing body of research out there – a separate group of Italian scientists published in PLOS ONE a few weeks ago also showed that mindfulness training can change the structure of our brains.

Of course for many believers in meditation, this discovery probably isn’t that exciting. Research back in the ’80s had suggested that cancer patients who join support groups are more likely to survive. But as we like to say, peer review or it didn’t happen.

We’re (sceptically) excited.

Source: EurekAlert

You can find this original article when you follow this link-https://www.sciencealert.com/world-first-evidence-suggests-that-meditation-alters-cancer-survivors-cells

7 Essential Vitamins You Need After Age 40

7 essential vitamins

Think of vitamins and nutrients as an army that will fight off age-related ailments. And the best way to build this army is by eating a healthy, well-rounded diet, says Kristin Kirkpatrick, MS, RD, manager of wellness nutrition programs at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute. While it’s always important to eat well, it becomes especially essential around age 40 because that’s when the rules start to change, she says.

“Your body probably isn’t working the same way at 40-plus as it was at 20,” she says. Muscle mass starts to deteriorate, we’re much more likely to put on weight, menopause may (or may soon) start, and risk of chronic diseases like cancer, heart disease, and diabetes begins to increase—which means your battle plan needs to start looking a little different (diabetes doesn’t have to be your fate; Rodale’s new book, The Natural Way To Beat Diabetes, shows you exactly what to eat and do to prevent the disease—and even reverse it).

One solution is getting enough of the right vitamins and nutrients, which is possible through healthy eating—and food sources are typically (but not always) a better bet than supplements because they’re better absorbed, Kirkpatrick says. Here are the key nutrients to look out for and the best ways to get them.

7 Essential Vitamins and the Best Ways to Get Them

Vitamin B 12

Once you turn 40 (and definitely after turning 50), vitamin B12 should be on your radar. It’s essential for normal blood and brain function, Kirkpatrick says. And while children and younger adults are likely to get the B12 they need from food—it’s in meat and animal products including chicken, fish, dairy, and eggs—B12 is more poorly absorbed as the body ages, typically starting around 50 because that’s when stomach acid levels deplete (watch out for these 9 signs you’re not getting enough vitamin B12).

Any time after 40 and before turning 50 is a good time to start getting B12 from a supplement or multivitamin. Aim for 2.4 mg per day (the current recommended dietary allowance), though there’s no need to worry about taking too much, Kirkpatrick adds. Because it’s a water-soluble vitamin, you pee out what you don’t need. (Speaking of pee, here’s what its color says about your health.)

Calcium 

It’s hard to know what to think about calcium: A recent analysis of 59 studies designed to measure the role it plays in preventing fractures for men and women older than 50 found that increasing calcium intake—either from foods or supplements—was not likely to significantly reduce fracture risk. And other research has linked calcium supplements to increased risk of heart attack, stroke, and cardiac death for postmenopausal women.

But even though our bones absorb most of the calcium they need earlier in life (typically before age 30), the nutrient does play a role in maintaining bone health later in life, too, according to Kirkpatrick. The nutrient is needed for other basic body functions like muscle contraction, nerve and heart functioning, and other biochemical reactions—and if you’re not getting enough calcium from your diet, the body steals calcium from your bones (and weakens them).

The bottom line is that you do need calcium at 40 and beyond, but these latest findings tell us you don’t need to go overboard, because more calcium does not necessarily mean more benefit and may even be harmful to heart health, she says. Most women can get the calcium they need—1,000 mg a day for women 40 to 50, and 1,200 mg for women older than 50—if they eat a well-rounded diet with calcium-rich foods like dairy, tofu, sardines, broccoli, almonds, and spinach.

Vitamin D

D is a biggie, Kirkpatrick says, especially after 40, because it helps protect against the age-related changes that start to kick in.  Vitamin D deficiencies have been linked to diabetes, heart disease, multiple sclerosis, and breast and colorectal cancers—all of which are more likely to crop up the older you get. Plus, D is essential for absorption of calcium in the body, she says.

Dietary sources include fish and fortified dairy, grains, and cereals, but generally the D you get from food is poorly absorbed. The sun is the best source of the vitamin, but not everyone lives close enough to the equator to be exposed to the strong rays that will deliver the D you need, Kirkpatrick explains. (Check out these other ways to get vitamin D.)

“If you’re living anywhere above Georgia, you’re probably not getting enough vitamin D from the sun,” she says. Plus, you don’t absorb it with sunscreen on—and you definitely don’t want to be hanging out in the sun without sunscreen (despite any vitamin D benefits). She recommends a D3 supplement (D3 being the type of vitamin D closest to what you would get from the sun). You should be getting at least 600 IU per day (and 800 IU per day after 50), according to current National Institutes of Health recommendations. The tolerable upper limit (i.e., the amount that will not cause harm) is as much as 4,000 IU per day. If you’re too low in D, here are the 10 worst things that can happen when you don’t get enough vitamin D.

A key function of magnesium is to help regulate blood pressure, which is especially important for women 40-plus, who are already at risk of high blood pressure due to normal aging. Deficiencies in magnesium have been linked to heart disease, diabetes, and inflammation, Kirkpatrick adds (here are 4 scary things that can happen if you’re not getting enough magnesium). Plus, it helps the body absorb calcium and plays a role in muscle, nerve, and heart function, as well as blood glucose control.

Your doc can test your magnesium levels if you think you might be deficient (and would need a supplement). But if you’re eating a healthy, balanced diet, you’re likely to get all the magnesium you need (320 mg a day for women 40 and up) from food, Kirkpatrick says—it’s found in dark leafy greens, beans, soy, nuts, seeds, and avocados. Too much magnesium does not necessarily pose health risks, but may cause diarrhea, nausea, or cramping.

Potassium

Potassium plays a key role in keeping blood pressure in check, no matter your age, Kirkpatrick says. In postmenopausal women, research has linked higher intake of potassium from food to decreased risk of stroke—though “high” intake was considered approximately 3.1 g, which is still lower than the recommended 4.7 g per day. And the benefits were seen in those getting as little as 2 g per day, says study author Sylvia Wassertheil-Smoller, PhD, a professor in the department of epidemiology and population health at Albert Einstein College of Medicine.

Potassium is definitely a nutrient you want to be getting enough of, but unless your MD prescribes it for another medical condition, Kirkpatrick cautions against taking potassium supplements. Too much potassium can damage the gastrointestinal tract and the heart, and can cause potentially life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias. Most people can get the potassium they need by eating a varied, healthy diet that includes bananas, sweet potatoes, chard, beans, and lentils (these 13 foods have more potassium than a banana). You’re highly unlikely to get enough potassium in your diet to be dangerous, Kirkpatrick says. If your doctor does prescribe supplements, she should carefully monitor how they affect you, she says.

 Omega 3’s 

Technically not a vitamin, omega-3 fatty acids still deserve a place on this list because of their myriad health benefits, Kirkpatrick says—and especially because they help counteract some of the negative changes that come with aging, like increased heart disease risk and cognitive decline. Research has shown that omega-3s help lower blood pressure (check out these other ways to lower your blood pressure naturally) and LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels, reduce the risk of heart disease, and play a role in keeping memory and thinking sharp.

In fact, a recent study found that people with higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids in their blood had larger brains and performed better on memory tests, planning activities, and abstract thinking, compared with individuals with lower levels—which suggests that omega-3 fatty acids play a role in maintaining brain health in addition to the other known benefits, says the study’s lead author, Zaldy S. Tan, MD, MPH, medical director of the Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care Program at UCLA.

Though you can get omega-3s from foods like fish, walnuts, flaxseeds, and leafy vegetables, taking a supplement is a good way to make sure you’re getting enough, Kirkpatrick says. Either way, aim for 500 mg if you’re healthy, 800 to 1,000 mg if you have heart disease, and 2,000 to 4,000 mg if you have high triglyceride levels. And be sure to ask your doctor about the right dose if you’re taking anticoagulant drugs, which can have serious side effects.

Probiotics

Probiotics are not technically vitamins or minerals either, but they’re important essentials for women 40 and up, Kirkpatrick says. Mounting evidence suggests probiotics play a role in keeping the gut healthy and weight down, and even in lowering risk of heart disease, diabetes, and stroke—all of which is especially important around 40 when muscle mass starts to decrease, making it easier to put on weight and develop insulin resistance.

And though you can get probiotics in some dairy and fermented soy products like seitan, foods typically will not contain as many strains as a supplement—and each strain comes with its own benefit, some for helping to control weight, others for helping prevent diarrhea. Plus, because probiotics are actually live and active cultures, you won’t be able to get them from foods that are cooked or heated.

You can find this original article with all content and original imaging at this link-http://www.prevention.com/health/vitamins-you-need-after-age-40.

 

 

What Big Data Tells us in the Marketplace

what big data tells us

As a business owner, do you know what big data tells us?

It’s frightening that most folks don’t know how to answer this question. What you market and how you market it is not the most important thing you do.

This statement IS true if you have no idea who your ideal customer is.

Reading and tracking the metrics of your social marketing are important, don’t get me wrong. However, it all starts at the very beginning.

This means that you go back to WHY you chose your niche market. Who is your ideal customer? You can only build your marketing plan once you know who they are.

Is there one major tactic you can use to keep you ahead?

Maybe, but the one principle you can build on is putting the customer first. When you do so, you’ll be able to then find the marketing techniques that work the best.

Today, I am going to share with you what big data is and what big data tells us so that we can approach our marketing campaign with laser-focused targeting.

What Big Data Tells Us in the Era of Computers

Did you know that computers play an important role in processing data and telling us everything we need to know about our customers?

Data is a great way to track human behavior, and computers are helping us use systems and processes that do just that. They process important information about how humans function in the world and their buying decisions.

This is especially true when it comes to retail.

Retail data gives us a ton of important information, and it gives us a good look at how humans react to commercials, certain types of advertising and why they make a specific decision in the end to buy.

Consider that a company looks at their quarterly earnings, and ultimately they know whether or not they performed up to par.

Following a tough economy, it’s no surprise that so many companies are spending their dough on retail data and human behavior. They want to know what makes you tick, and what gets you to pull that “buying trigger”.

If you can capture data on every single action a human being takes, you can also predict exactly what a customer is going to do next.

You can find out what they are doing next, tomorrow, or even possibly in the next five years. Scary eh?

The thing is, this data isn’t stalking people, but it tells us a lot about what people do and why. Why do you buy a specific type of towel? Why do you drink a certain type of drink at a certain time of day?

What big data tells us is that human beings are predictable, and they are predictable enough that you can plan out your business for the next year.

What if you could craft our copywriting, capture pages, and websites just right, to set it up for a total customer experience?

You can.

What Big Data Tells Us Through Social Media

Social media is a great experiment full of case studies.

This is why social media is now one of the foremost tools online marketers use, along with small and medium sized companies.

What we can learn most about data through social media is the habits of our customers online and how it relates to us marketing to them in a more effective way.

Pixel, a phenomenal tool on Facebook allows us to watch what other pages a customer is viewing once they have left our page.

This is great news, because it means that we can see more about their personal decisions online. This has opened up the door for more streamlined Facebook marketing.

Big data can tell us a lot, but we need to sift through it often as e-commerce changes to serve our customers better. If you knew where your customer was going to look next, would you want to know that information?

What big data tells us is critical for our marketing campaigns.

The Effects of Meditation on the Brain

The Effects of Meditation on the Brain

What happens in the brain during meditation? originally appeared on Quora: the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world.

Answer by Headspace, The meditation and mindfulness app, on Quora:

The practice of meditation has been around for thousands of years, but we’re only beginning to unravel the science behind how this seemingly simple practice can bring about significant changes in both our bodies and minds. Just like physical exercise, the more often you work out, the more benefits you’ll see and the longer they will last.

Meditation is the same – it is not the act of sitting idly, trying hard to do nothing. It generally involves focusing on a particular object, often the breath, observing the mind wandering, and returning it to that object. Through meditation, we get better acquainted with the behavior of our minds, and we enhance our ability to regulate our experience of our environment, rather than letting our environment dictate how we experience life. With recent neuroscientific findings, meditation as a practice has been shown to literally rewire brain circuits that boost both mind and body health. These benefits of meditation have surfaced alongside the revelation that the brain can be deeply transformed through experience – a quality known as “neuroplasticity.

The amazing thing about meditating is that, on top of affecting brain functioning, it can have both short-term and long-term benefits in both brain and body. A Harvard study showed that eliciting the body’s relaxation response could even affect our genes – in just minutes. They found that meditating (even just once) could dampen the genes involved in the inflammatory response, and promote those genes associated with DNA stability (hello longevity!) Other short-term benefits include reducing stress and blood pressure and improving attention. It may even help us make smarter choices. It’s fairly clear that in establishing a consistent practice we can experience enduring health benefits. For instance, the short-term benefits described above are typically enhanced with regular practice. Other studies are beginning to shed light on the long-term benefits of consistent practice. Researchers have found denser gray matter in brain areas related to memory and emotional processing in expert meditators. Additionally, having a regular practice is associated with benefits to social aspects of our health, like boosting our mindfulness, empathy and resilience. It can also help us regulate our thoughts so that we’re not so quick to judge, diminishing the potentially detrimental effects of stereotypes.

In one study it was even suggested that meditation could make us kinder individuals, boosting our levels of compassion. (By the way, this study used the Headspace app as their intervention.) While mounting scientific evidence suggests meditation physically alters our minds and bodies, sometimes the proof is in the pudding. Our beginner’s course, Take10, is completely free and offers daily 10-minute meditations for 10 days. That’s enough time to see if you like it, and maybe experience some of these benefits for yourself.

This question originally appeared on Quora – the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world. You can follow Quora on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

You can read the original article at this link-https://www.forbes.com/sites/quora/2017/05/15/the-effects-of-meditation-on-the-brain/#79538d6a2ddb.

 

The workout program to get arms like Mark Wahlberg

tips to persuade someone

Build your biceps and triceps three times as fast to get guns like your favorite action star.

MARK WAHLBERG STARTED lifting weights in the ’80s. Back then, fitness seekers didn’t have the sophisticated information on training and nutrition that we have now (though they did have ALF—so, yeah, that’s something). As a result, they had to use their ingenuity to make gains. One of the things they discovered was that working a muscle more often made it grow faster, but hitting it too often caused a plateau.

This program offers a combination of frequency and volume that’s just right and harkens back to the kind of straight-up ’80s bodybuilding that gave Wahlberg the physique he’s still known for 30 years later.

You can find the full program at www.mensfitness.com.

Photo by: Sean Hyson

How to Build Your Email List the Easy Way!

copywriting for business

Would you like to learn how to build your email list the easy way?

I am sure that when you read the headline you said, “Yes!” at the top of your lungs!

I cannot say I am surprised, only because building your list is the ABSOLUTE best way you can market your product and service.

If you build a list, then you’ll have qualified prospects, and some that are good prospects but they may not buy until down the road.

This is okay.

However, keep in mind that it is always best to create an effective lead magnet. These lead magnets can be super effective, and they are vital to the success of your business.

They can be a great way to share information with your prospects, and to build relationships with them when you give them something of value.

Today, I am going to share with you how to build your list, and how to do so effectively in a way that you can grow your business and build long-lasting relationships with your prospects.

How to Build Your Email List Effectively

Now that you know WHY building an email list is important, it’s time to dig into how to get started with a way to get your prospect’s attention.

Yes, it’s all about writing compelling copy, but there is a lot more to it than that. There are numerous ways to attract prospects, but I am going to share what I feel are the best methods of how to build your email list effectively.

  1. Host an event. This is a great one, and it works well for any business if you market your event well in advance. You may host a tradeshow, or you may even hold a speaking engagement that you market a few months in advance. As you market this event, use an opt-in form on a capture page as you market yourself online. You may also do so on Facebook and promote it through Twitter.
  2. Optimize your website for opt-ins. When you do this, you’ll want to make sure that they cannot miss the area to opt-in. This is important especially as you create the lead magnet itself. Whether you use a report with valuable information as a lead magnet or even a giveaway, make sure you keep that opt-in block where your visitors can see it.
  3. Create a lead magnet. There are tons of ways to attract the right traffic, but one of the best ways to focus on how to build your email list is with the creation of a solid lead magnet. A lead magnet is what attracts your readers, and entices them to give up their name and email address for what you are offering. It would be a FREE report loaded with information for your audience, or it could be a FREE resource. One of the best magnets I offer is a list of resources I use for my business. This is actually located on my website, and it’s free. It’s designed to save my readers the trouble of researching easy to use tools on a budget when they first get started. Make your lead magnet relevant to your industry and put it in a place where your reader can easily find it.
  4. FREE teleseminar. This is a big one, because it may make people feel more comfortable if they can see that tons of folks are on the call, and they can also see that you are a real person. Using a teleconference along with video is the icing on the cake, allowing people to see you in action. Always offer something like this for FREE, and maybe share with other entrepreneurs how to build your email list while they are on with you!

There are numerous ways to show entrepreneurs that you know your stuff, and that you have something of value to offer them.

If you are building your business online, you need to learn how to build a list. The money is ALWAYS in the list. If you would like to learn more about “how to build your email list” with online marketing methods, be sure to check out my offer HERE.

 

Scripting Your Videos for Ultimate Success!

scripting your video for ultimate success

Are you focused on scripting your videos for ultimate success?

Creating content doesn’t just refer to writing blog posts, but it also refers to creating videos. Gaining maximum exposure in the search engine will make the difference for you versus your competitors.

If you are on the fence about creating videos, and you aren’t sure what to say, there are some helpful scripts that you can use to market yourself AND your product or service.

If you want to brand yourself or do a powerful re-brand, consider that the number and quality of the videos you create will show your audience who you really are.

Positioning yourself as the expert, and building momentum for your brand is critical for your success. Would you like to gain authority status?

If so, please make sure that you read this blog post all the way through until the end. I’ll share with you some secrets I have for creating videos, and what you should know about scripting your videos just right to boost your influence in the marketplace.

Scripting Your Videos to Attract Qualified Prospects

Okay, so you’ve struggled to get qualified prospects to come to your website. I get it. I had no idea what it took to get qualified prospects until I continued to fail miserably.

I started researching other marketing methods outside of blogging. I knew that there had to be a better way, but I just couldn’t figure out what it would be.

When I stumbled upon this YouTube traffic report it all made sense.

If I could rank well in search engines, and I could get constant traffic with prospects who are ready to buy, I could HELP more people and build success stories.

You have to learn how to impact people, and if you can do that, and you can tell them how you can help them, they’ll be drawn to you.

It’s easy to see that video accounts for nearly 90% of all website traffic, so why not put more into video marketing? You can build your email list easily, and you’ll get traffic easily from the number one resource for information.

YOUTUBE!

What is the BIG secret with YouTube? Well, I am getting to that, but I wanted to lay the foundation for you with the information above.

Here are some things to keep in mind as you begin scripting your videos.

  1. Keep your video to two minutes or less. Human beings have a very short attention span. This isn’t just referring to children, this is referring to every human being on the planet. Give your prospects tips on how they can solve their problem, short, sweet, and to the point.
  2. Create a series of “how to” videos. “How to” videos are great, just like “how to” articles are great. When you are focused on teaching prospects how to build a business, you should make videos that focus on those areas. Discuss, “how to set up a blog”, “how to write great copy”, “how to generate more leads online”, things of this nature. Get the idea?
  3. Create an outline for scripting your video. The best thing you could do is draw up and outline for your video before you ever record it. The following steps will help you get the perfect video every time. Introduce yourself, let them know what they can expect, deliver the information to them, give a short recap, and close with a strong call-to-action. When you do this, you’ll get a HUGE response.

These are great tips for creating videos and getting the exposure and traffic you need to be successful. Now that you know how to get started with new videos that can get your prospects attention, let me share with you the very blueprint I used with examples you can use to get your started.

To start scripting your videos like a boss, go HERE.