When you think of spiders, you probably don’t think of milk. But it turns out that some of these tiny little 8-legged arachnids are full of some pretty good stuff.
When I first came across the concept of spider milk, I wondered if there was some new alternative to almond milk on the market. Turns out there’s not. However, there is one species of spider producing some pretty potent nourishment for their young.
"I believe we can learn from other animals, even if just to reinforce the basics."
This species is the Toxeus Magnus found in South-East Asia, and their young grow exceptionally fast. They reach almost half adult size in their first 20 days of life. So researchers set out to discover how they achieved this.
Scientists from the Chinese Academy of Science put mother Toxeus Magnus’ under the microscope and gently squeezed their abdomen. They found they excreted a creamy white fluid similar to human milk.
Upon testing this milk, scientists discovered it contains...
Running is one of the best forms of exercise. So why don’t more people do it? Many people say they don’t like running and I believe this is because they simply don’t know “how to run”. So let me show you how.
I’ve been a runner for a long time. I love running. I got into running when I was 13 to lose some weight. It was right around the time I started high school and appearance all of a sudden became very important.
"Running is one of the greatest forms of exercise you can do. And it’s relatively cheap — all you need are a decent pair of runners."
Running is great because it is relatively cheap to do. All you need is a pair of runners. I’ve always preferred the isolation of the activity — to be by myself, with my thoughts; almost as if it’s a type of meditation. But running can also be very social.
I started because we lived right next to an oval. It was easy for me to walk out the back gate and run some...
Meditation has been around for thousands of years and there are many different types of meditation. From mindfulness meditation to progressive muscle relaxation, to zen meditation and transcendental meditation. Now, there may be a new type of meditation on the horizon - eMeditation.
Neuroscientist Dr. Bashar Badran, from the Medical University of South Carolina, and his colleagues, have been using a brain stimulation technique called transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to send a small electrical current across the brain. This procedure involves placing one electrode on the bone above the eye and another over the frontal area of the brain (known as the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex).
"...before you rush out and purchase a head-band infused with electrodes to wrap around your head during your next meditation session... there are a few points to be aware of."
The electrical signal acts to “switch off” the groups of neural cells responsible for...
The ability to exert self-control is considered a fundamental trait of people who are successful. It has been a long held view since Walter Mischel’s marshmallow experiments of the 1960s that people who can exercise self-control at will must possess some kind of super-power.
Self-control, or discipline as it is more commonly referred to by people who sense they lack it, is a learned skill. Like a muscle, self-control can be developed to essentially unlimited levels. But is a strong ability to exert self-control a good thing? New research suggests not.
"Developing your discipline muscle and practicing self-control is important. We should all do it. But we also need to know when to give it a rest and cut yourself some slack."
Most of our current understanding of self-control comes from the work of Walter Mischel’s marshmallow experiments of the 1960’s. I learnt about these experiments when I was studying psychology at university and, with...
Article written by visiting blogger Dr. Nikola Djordjevic
Over the past few decades, the trend of excluding gluten from diets has become extremely popular with millions of people around the world adopting this way of life. Some do so without being fully aware of all the information regarding gluten, and whether gluten exclusion from their diet would actually impact their health positively.
A gluten-free diet can provide some benefits to the overall health of most individuals, but before we come to these advantages, let’s start with the basics – what is gluten anyway? Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye, and triticale and it derives its name from the glue-like characteristics of wet dough. It helps food retain its shape, so it is often used, and not just in the food industry. It is interesting to note that gluten can even find its way into lipsticks, shampoos, and envelope labels.
Gluten can also be found in a wide range of foods such as bread, baked foods,...
Finding foods that actually fill you up, give you energy, and most importantly, taste good, is essential when starting your path to ultimate health.
I clearly remember a time when my stomach would be in painful knots if I didn’t eat by mid-morning. Even if I did eat, I’d still be hungry by morning tea, I couldn’t wait for lunch, I was starving by mid-afternoon and I’d be ready to eat a horse and chase the rider by dinner.
"To feel fuller for longer, drink water and look for foods containing protein, fat and fibre."
The foods you eat are essential to your success at achieving ultimate health. Foods that contain protein, fat and fibre are harder for our bodies to break down, and hence, help to keep you fuller for longer.
While out for a run recently, I realised I’ve been going about goal setting all wrong. Like many, I’d set goals like “lose x number of kilos in x amount of time”, or “run x distance in x amount of time”. It was all about the result.
As many of us do, I over-indulged over the Christmas break and wanted to lose a few kilos and get back to the healthier-version of myself I’ve become quite fond of. One of my preferred types of exercise is running, so I downloaded the Nike Run Club app and signed up for the 60k challenge — to run 60km in the next month. Unwittingly, I’d changed the way I would set goals forever.
"Don’t focus on the scoreboard, focus on the process."
Goal setting isn’t so much about achieving the target as it is about moving towards being the person you want to be, and living the life you want to live. Whether you achieve the target or not really is irrelevant. The target merely gives you direction.
And so it begins … again! Another year rolls around and we start it full of hope, anticipation and a steely desire to ensure that it’s not like the last. “This one’s going to be better. This one’s going to be the best. This is my year!” But how do we make 2019 our best year ever?
For the past five or so years, I’ve been making incremental changes to my life. It all started with a plan. I got clear on what I want and I started moving towards that. It’s been slow. So slow that if I don’t look up and smell the roses, I might not recognise how much it’s improved. But it certainly has improved. As I learn from each year and take deliberate action, each year becomes better than the last.
Self-improvement is not a choice, it’s a necessity.
Failing to take deliberate action and improve upon your life every year is like never doing any maintenance. Whether it’s a garden, a house, a car, or a yacht, if you don’t...
The New Year often starts full of hope, anticipation and excitement. We are often more motivated than ever to finally conquer that area of our life we’ve felt like we haven’t had control over for some time. But hope and desire alone isn’t enough. We need a plan.
I’ve been following the same annual fitness plan for some time now. It’s not perfect. Nothing ever is. I need to amend it at times and I’m certainly always improving it. But I feel as though the small changes I’ve made for 2019 bring it very close. In fact, I’ve found this plan to be so effective that it sets the foundation for every area of my life.
So here it is! My Ultimate 2019 Fitness Planning Calendar. Follow this calendar to reduce your risk of injury, fatigue or plateau, and enhance your fitness to greater levels than ever before.
Use this time to get back into your exercise regime. If you’re new to...
With the year just starting, now is a great time to start thinking about planning out your year. One of the best ways to start when it comes to planning your year is to break it up into seasons. You can break your year up in many ways. My favourite, from years of trailing and tweaking, is to break it up into quarters.
I actually came across the concept of dividing my year up into seasons from Lewis Howes’ podcast a few years ago. At the time I had just burned out from trying to do too much and had just started working for myself as a way to gain some much-needed balance.
"The Earth’s weather pattern is divided up into seasons. This allows for life to flourish. If it’s good enough for the Earth, it’s good enough for me."
The idea of breaking your year up into quarters works well because it replicates much of the populated world’s natural weather cycle of four seasons — Summer, Autumn, Winter and Spring. Essentially, it gives you...
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