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In the News: Experiences with nature good for your overall health

Nature can provide you with more than fresh air and a nice view. In fact, nature can enhance your overall health and wellbeing.

The Center for Spirituality & Healing’s Jean Larson, Ph.D., was featured in the December issue of Minnesota Health Care News and discussed nature’s health benefits…

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video-and-multimedia

Combating Holiday Stress

For most people, the holidays are a time of celebration.

But for some, the holidays can also be a catalyst for increased stress levels.

During the holidays, increases in family time, financial challenges or responsibilities can be overwhelming. In addition, these stressors can be compounded as we sleep and exercise less and our food and alcohol intake climbs.

But the good news is that with a few simple tips, most people can help keep stress levels from getting the better of them this holiday season.

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expert-perspectives

What has nine lives and makes you live longer?

We’re talking cats here.

People love their pets. Some people love their pets to an almost excessive amount. But when you consider the fact that owning a pet can add years to your life, a cat can quickly seem like a smart investment.

According to a study that followed more than 4,000 cat owners, led by executive director of the Minnesota Stroke Institute at the University of Minnesota, Adnan Qureshi, M.D., the presence of cats results in a significantly lower risk of death by heart attack or stroke.

Cat owners “appeared to have a lower rate of dying from heart attacks” over 10 years of follow-up compared to feline-free folk, Qureshi said in an interview with U.S. News.

The 30 percent reduction in heart attack risk “was a little bit surprising,” he added. “We certainly expected an effect, because we thought that there was a biologically plausible mechanism at work. But the magnitude of the effect was hard to predict.”

This may not come as a surprise to cat owners who have experienced the unconditional love a feline companion can offer, but, cats, by nature, can alleviate stress and anxiety, which has the potential to reduce the risk of heart attack.

Although this type of companionship can potentially help you live longer, it does have a serious risk of cute overload.

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