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Solar Heats Up

Demand Surges as Prices Fall JIM MOTAVALLI Now is a good time to buy a solar system and get off the grid. Solar photovoltaic prices have fallen 67 percent in the last five years, reports Alexandra Hobson with the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). It’s a boom period for solar—a record 14.8 gigawatts were installed last year in the U.S. ... Read More »

Nature’s Classroom

Outdoor Learning Engages the Whole Child MEREDITH MONTGOMERY For youngsters at Tiny Trees Preschool, in Seattle, nature is their classroom—rain or shine; tuition even includes a rain suit and insulated rubber boots. At Schlitz Audubon Nature Preschool, in Milwaukee, children use downed wood to build forts and fires. Students of Vermont’s Educating Children Outdoors (ECO) program use spray bottles of ... Read More »

Fluoride Alert

Excess in Food and Tap Water Harms Pets KAREN BECKER In 2009, an Environmental Working Group (EWG) study found that bone meal and animal byproducts in eight of 10 major national dog food brands contain fluoride in amounts between 1.6 and 2.5 times higher than the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommended maximum dose in drinking water. Some fluoride from ... Read More »

Fabulous Fan Fare

Healthy Tailgating Foods to Cheer For JUDITH FERTIG Eat, play, party… and repeat. We may call it tailgating, fangating, homegating, a watch party or simply eating with friends before a big game. According to the American Tailgaters Association, in St. Paul, Minnesota, an estimated 50 million Americans tailgate annually. Whether we’re on the road or at home, making the menu ... Read More »

Aging with Passion and Purpose

Finding Fulfillment, Creativity and Meaning DEBORAH SHOUSE Want to age well? The answer isn’t in your 401k. Self-acceptance, a positive attitude, creative expression, purposeful living and spiritual connections all anchor successful and meaningful aging. In fact, these kinds of preparations are just as important as saving money for retirement, according to Ron Pevny, director of the Center for Conscious Eldering, ... Read More »

Rodney Yee on Yoga as a Way of Life

Simple Strategies for Staying on Track MARLAINA DONATO Renowned yogi and international teacher Rodney Yee, of New York City, has maintained an inspired yoga practice for 37 years while juggling career obligations, fame and family life. While the benefits of yoga are increasingly well known—from stress reduction and pain management to a more limber body and inner peace—Yee is also ... Read More »

Meditation and Music Aid Memory in Early Stages of Alzheimer’s

Study Shows Improvement in Cognitive Functions Anew study from West Virginia University, in Morgantown, reveals that listening to music and practicing meditation may help improve memory function for those in the beginning stages of Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers asked 60 adults experiencing subjective cognitive decline (SCD), a common predictor of Alzheimer’s, to engage in kirtan kriya musical meditation or listen to ... Read More »

Tonsillectomies Help Only Temporarily

Benefits Do Not Last Researchers from Vanderbilt University Medical Center, in Nashville, Tennessee, examined the effectiveness of tonsillectomies in children with recurring throat infections. Using data from nearly 10,000 studies of tonsillectomies, the scientists analyzed illness rates and quality of life for young patients following the surgery. The analysis found that children experienced a notable drop in school absences and ... Read More »

Yoga Eases Eating Disorders

Regular Practice Reduces Anxiety and Depression Researchers from Brown University, in Providence, Rhode Island, have found that regular yoga practice can help reduce anxiety and depression in young women with eating disorders. The scientists followed 20 girls between the ages of 14 and 18 that were enrolled in an outpatient eating disorder clinic that comprised the larger control group. Those ... Read More »

A Living Donor Story—10 Years After   

by Dan Martinsen This is a story of family and faith—about positivity in the face of adversity. It is about two “warrior angels”: my wife, Doreen Schmidt Martinsen, and my sister-in-law, Kelly McGrath Martinsen. It is, sadly, also about our country’s continued failure to respond to the acute need for registered organ donors. And it is the story of the ... Read More »