Tag Archives: Recommendation

Interview: An Insider’s Take On Tanning

By Daniella Lee

Vitamin D is the secret steroid that provides benefits such as a longer, healthier life and overall happiness. But when the sun sets and the winter cold creeps up, the recommended intake for Vitamin D might be a little difficult to reach. A possible solution: tanning salons. Now, we’re not suggesting you turn into Snooki, but she may be onto something. This week, we sat down with Melina Vincent, an employee at Halsted Tan and Spa to find out if tanning salons can provide you with that extra vitamin D you need to get through the winter.

Occam’s Taser: What tanning services are offered at Halsted Tan and Spa?
Melina Vincent: We offer UVA tanning (helps eliminate burning), UVB and UVA, and our spray tan which is called Versa.  All the UV beds we have include base level, mid level and high level and both stand ups and lay downs in each.

OT: Tell us about the different levels of tanning?
MV: Base level is equivalent to a level 3 or level 4, it will give you a good base color tan without making you too dark.  Mid-level is the next up and includes more intense face and shoulder tanners.  It’s a stronger voltage and has more bulbs in the bed so you get a deeper tan and after a few visits you look like you came back from vacation.  Our high-level beds are a good way to get color right away that stays for a few days without doing the versa spa.  It’s a higher voltage than both the base level and mid level and has more beds than all of them.  We have two beds imported from Italy that are Strictly UVA so if someone who is fairer complected and wanted to go in a high level bed they can go in one of these beds and still receive all the benefits of the high level bed without burning.

OT: How does your salon offer Vitamin D?
MV: Because each bed is the newest technology it makes sure to give you a safe tan with your daily amount of Vitamin D.  We also offer deals like $2 tan coupons, $5 tans every Tuesday, and $10 on any bed (including our $32 high level bed) after 9pm Tues-Thurs. to promote UV tanning and Vitamin D Nutrition.

OT: What are the major side effects of tanning?
MV: To much exposure or burning is something we see very often, people will come in and want to do a strong bed for the full time and they haven’t been in the sun so their melanin is still “sleeping” and although we warn them they still tend to burn.  Also, a side effect could be wrinkles at an early age ONLY if you abuse your tanning privileges and have been doing it for many many years.

OT: What are the benefits of tanning?
MV: Vitamin D is the biggest benefit because studies have shown that people who have the required amount of vitamin D daily and or weekly are healthier than those who are not.  Also, you get a nice color and look healthy.

OT: What do you recommend at your salon?
MV: I recommend trying the UVA bed because it’s very uncommon for a salon to have it. If you have an upcoming special event, try the Versa Spa Spray because it is the newest spray tan technology. It’s a sugar based solution, not an iodine base,  so it won’t turn your skin orange.

OT: How does Halsted Tan and Spa promote tanning?
MV: We promote tanning in the safest way possible, we make sure every client goes into the room with eye-wear and we encourage them to have lotion to moisturize their skin. We also have many many options, so between packages and specials and beds a customer can really come in and customize exactly what they want to do. We advertise a healthy glow during the winter and promote Vitamin D benefits.

Tanning salons can be your resource for that healthy glow and your vitamin D fix. Now, we aren’t recommending that you turn into an Oompa-Loompa, but the occasional drop-in won’t hurt. Before you head into any salon, get to know all the facts. Melina and the tanning world like to look at the benefits of the tanning bed, but there is a dark side. UVA rays go deep into the skin creating that nice golden brown tan, but provide no Vitamin D production. UVB rays are the ones that stimulate the vitamin D production, but also burns your skin easily. And we all know that tanning increases your risk for skin cancer. Halsted Tan and Spa does offers great deals, if the tanning bed is suddenly calling your name, so you can glow even in the winter snow.

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Drama & Trauma: Texting Can Cause Both

By Lizzy Sebuck

Text-slang and your education isn’t the only combination that might not be a match made in heaven – combining texting with other aspects of your life can be dangerous too. I know every time I pick up my ma for a ride in the Crown Vic she is constantly slapping at my hands for me to put down my iPhone and keep my eyes on the road. We’ve come to find that texting and text-slang can do more than damage your grade in English classes, it can actually cause massive trauma to not only your social life, and also be physically damaging. The combination of texting and driving has become such a serious issue that state governments are altering some of their rules of the road as people pay less attention to the traffic ahead of them and more to their Twitter feed. Those who engage in texting while driving are not only a hazard to themselves, but a threat to the unsuspecting drivers around them.

The trouble with texting is not restricted to the road, but often occurs in every day conversations amongst many teenagers as well. Invasions of privacy, sexting, bullying, and text-abuse have become a reality with the teenage use of texting. Text-abuse is a harmful way to bully because many teens keep it to themselves. Harassing someone via text is very different than bullying in the hallway. Harboring negative emotions caused by abuse has lead to instances of teen suicide in the U.S., a growing result of text-abuse.  In recent years there have been numerous social media campaigns urging youth to put down their tech-savvy phones and use caution when utilizing instant messaging technology (but don’t think you’re out of the doghouse either, Gramps). Today at Occam’s Taser we’re piggybacking on these campaigns to let you know the importance of their missions. A summary? Wise up young fools.

Text abuse has become a huge issue amongst teens in recent years. In an effort to inform the youth about the harmful effects of their words (in a digital form or not) MTV’s A Thin Line campaigns on sexting and text- bullying has been backed by celebs such as Buffy’s Michelle Tratchenberg and even Jersey Shore’s Vinny Guadagnino speaking out on these issues. With the development of more expedient instant messaging capabilities, humans can communicate with one another in a way that previous generations could not imagine. This new technology opens up a million possibilities for danger. Although students try to avoid bullies in the hallways, they won’t be able to escape this new medium which could compromise privacy with one tap on the share button. The creators of A Thin Line campaign declare their mission statement as follows:

“A Thin Line campaign was developed to empower you to identify, respond to, and stop  the spread of digital abuse in your life and amongst your peers. The campaign is built on the understanding that there’s a “thin line” between what may begin as a harmless joke and something that could end up having a serious impact on you or someone else.”

Their infamous commercials generated buzz within the teen scene when they started to screen in between popular MTV programming. These commercials broadcast images of what could happen to bullies if caught in harassment, or furthermore the harmful mental toll a person who is bullied experiences. Though somewhat outlandish, their commercials make a strong point; text abuse can be devastating for both parties involved.

This campaign not only covers bullying though, the A Thin Line campaign educates its audience on the dangers of sexting and spying through the digital screen as well. Teens have found sexting to be a thrilling way to get their crush to notice them, but it certainly doesn’t reflect too well on their image after the damage is done. The Sexting campaign informs its audience on the harsh facts, such as  “more than 50% of those who shared a sext have shared it with multiple people.” One risque picture or raunchy text meant for one person can quickly spread to the entire school with the click of a button. A Thin Line urges teens not to feel pressure to sext and reminds them that even if the receiver of a sext doesn’t share it with the whole class, that person will now think the sext-er will compromise themselves to send dirty texts anytime, or with anyone. Not the best look for a teen just trying to survive high school. In their Spying campaign, A Thin Line cites that “over 25% of young people say their BF/GF have read their texts without permission.” Going through someone elses phone history leads to nothing but negative consequences. Dating or not, when the other party discovers that their privacy has been invaded trust no longer exists and the relationship is compromised. What if the phone owner isn’t guilty of any looming suspicions?  The revelation that trust, or furthermore respect, is not a priority in the relationship will unravel the bond of that friendship.

A Thin Line lets audiences know that (watch out hackers) even if something incriminating to the relationship is found through snooping, calling out your partner on their actions may land YOU in trouble.  Sneaky acquaintances risk the loss of Facebook account access when reported to the site based off of their privacy policy, and phone invasions of privacy can even result in lawsuit! The goal behind the A Thin Line campaign is to let those involved know what could happen and furthermore, how to draw their line and put an end to textual-abuse such as sexting and spying.

Oh, Oprah. Your hypnotizing ways of doing things always seem so right, and copying you makes me feel like I too am doing good for society, like signing a pledge to not text and drive.  Oprah not only made a huge impact on American youth, but on parents who are naive to the text generation as well. Her No Phone Zone Campaign asked drivers to sign a pledge to swear to never text and drive at the same time, citing that 16 people a day die from texting-and-driving related accidents. The No Phone Zone campaign works to prevent the senseless deaths that result from reckless drivers who text and make calls while driving. As a nonprofit organization, the No Phone Zone campaign uses a newsletter, stories, and updates of new state laws regarding phone use to educate audiences on the dangers of phone use and driving. Oprah drew awareness to her program through a daily reference to it on her wildly popular talk show The Oprah Show, as well as asking each audience member in attendance to sign the pledge before taking their seat. Look at that, now Oprah’s gonna go save your life. At least Oprah kept it mostly PG rated, this PSA from the UK made headlines with how graphic it is. Gory? Yes. But it sure as hell makes the point.

If the gospel of Oprah wasn’t enough to bring awareness to the issue, a recent celebrity death drew much media attention to the risk of texting-and-driving. Celebrity Plastic Surgeon Dr. Frank Ryan (most famously known for performing 10 surgeries on Heidi Montag in 1 day) was allegedly tweeting from his cell phone as he was driving around California when he accidentally drove his car off of a cliff. You read right, drove his car off of a cliff. Celebrities such as Janice Dickinson, Gary Busey, and Lisa Rinna who knew and had work done by Dr.Ryan gathered at a candle light vigil after he died and spoke to the media about the tragedy and the unnecessary death of their friend, thus igniting a fire within entertainment nightly television to urge their audience to put the phone down. The following picture is the last thing Dr.Ryan tweeted before he died.

Your adorable Twitpic may not be worth the risk.

Texting can be more dangerous than you think. Text abuse such as sexting, bullying, or spying can lead to depression and death amongst teenagers, who are the primary users of text messaging devices, but just about every age group can be impacted by this harassment. The least significant negative outcome of text-abuse may result is a loss of credibility and the destruction of a once-spotless image. So please use some morals and ethics when texting. When driving, you can worry about changing your Facebook status from “0MG T0T4LLY 4L!\/3!!!” to “UGH ded “ at some other time, keep your eyes on the road.  So if you’re gonna text, try it out while being grammatically correct, have some respect, and keep your hands on the wheel and off your phone (thanks, ma).

AYTMTB: And You’re Telling Me This Because…?

by Katie Gangloff

Acronyms: they’re good if you’re in a hurry, but bad if you have no effing clue what they mean. Occam has been studying some text messaging lingo that savvy texters are using these days. So if you absolutely have to sacrifice your grammar for an on-the-go conversation, we’ve got the hook up with some trendy acronyms to satisfy your speedy text needs. Here are a few that made us chuckle:

WAI: What An Idiot – now you can use this when you’re having a lunch date with you’re girlfriends and one of them has completely lost it.

LONH: Lights On, Nobody Home – for the times when your co-worker has absolutely no clue what the hell he is talking about.

AWLTP: Avoiding Work Like the Plague – share this with your water cooler buddy after you have had an awkward run in with the guy from the billing department.

So here are some acronyms to start using, but what are the best phones to text on you ask? If you’re ‘Ruling The Air’ with Verizon, try out the BlackBerry Bold, it has a full QWERTY keyboard with trackball navigation.

Or if a touchscreen has you intrigued, try the DROID X By Motorola, which has a new swipe texting feature.
If you’re living ‘free and easy’ with AT&T, the Pantech Reveal has a pretty good size screen to see those awesome, or confusing, acronyms.

Similar to the Pantech Reveal, the Samsung Magnet has a reasonable screen witha full QWERTY keyboard.

Although you may not be a part of the 47% of teeny boppers who can text blindfolded, you may enjoy txting lyk dat. So grab yr fav ph, crak yr nuckles, file yr nails, put sum drops n yr Izy, n txt ‘til d cows cum hom. Also, once the lingo sinks in, don’t forget to txt msg Occam to show your soh and hugz.

TTFN!

Put Some Happy Back In Your Holiday: Your Gifts Are Just A Click Away

by Daniella Lee

With the holiday season approaching, the smell of crisp cold air, ice skating in the park, cute mittens, and delicious Starbucks gingerbread lattes can fill anyone up with joy. Come December, you’re freezing your ass off, sitting in a snowstorm and every driver has turned into your Grandpa Earl who walks faster than he drives. “It’s the most wonderful time of the year!” turns into over-eating, over-spending and simply just being over-it. This week our research focused on the correlation between shopping and unhappiness. This makes sense especially during the holiday season: who likes to go out and spend money on their loved ones when the scene from The Day After Tomorrow is live in color? The solution to your winter blues is online shopping.

A simple enough concept and one that we are all probably pros at, online shopping provides 24/7 access to the things you need, want, and love. There are no ridiculously long check-out lines, over excited sale associates and parking wars to endure. But on infamous days like Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving where stores offer special promotions, the crazies come out and we all become victims to their 3-day stake out for the new PlayStation. Shop.org provided a safe haven and restored some sanity to the holiday season when they coined the term “Cyber Monday” in 2005. The term stems from research in which retailers recorded a 77% increase in online shopping the Monday after Thanksgiving. Cyber Monday is the unofficial kickoff for online holiday shopping with retailers offering coupons and special offers only available online. So grab your credit card and work out that index finger because the faster you click, the better the deals get.

Last year, Cyber Monday deals ranged from cheap airfare, hotels, gaming consoles, digital cameras, toys, bedding, you name it. Retailers like Walmart and Target had Cyber Week where they offered a new deal everyday. According to data from Experian Hitwise, among the top online retailers Amazon was the top visited site for Cyber Monday 2009 with 15.53% hits. Amazon has a cool wish list feature so if you don’t get all of the 300 things you wanted for the holidays, they will be saved online for when your birthday rolls around. Trailing close behind were Walmart, Target, Best Buy and JC Penny. 2010 brings new deals and offers to the table, and sites like Cyber Monday Central, Best Cyber Monday Sales, and Offers.Com are keeping customers up-to-date with the latest Cyber Monday news.

The success of Cyber Monday can be seen in the statistics. According to comScore, online shoppers spent $887 million dollars on Cyber Monday in 2009 compared to $834 million dollars the year before. Data from comScore also shows an increase of dollars spent on Cyber Monday since the term was coined in 2005. The originator of Cyber Monday, Shop.org, has created their own online mall CyberMonday.com centered around offering exclusive deals from retailers throughout the holidays. Over 700 retailers are featured on the site which offers a complete variety of holiday gift ideas. Our personal favorite tab on this site, the free shipping offers allows you to get the best deals without having to pay to get them. Cyber Monday falls on November 27th this year, so be prepared for a more relaxed Chrismahanukwanzakah shopping season and don’t forget to show your love to Occam, we’ll send you our wish list if you don’t know what to get us!

Workouts In The Midst Of Winter-Blues

by Margo Ruter

For those of us not blessed with the southern California sun year-round, staying in shape in the winter time is harder than being the cool kid in 7th grade. With the short days of dim sunlight, it can be pretty rough to get yourself out of bed at 6 A.M for a morning jog. The good news is that you have a lot of options, the bad news is that motivation doesn’t come in a package deal.

1. Get a gym-membership
It might seem like a no brainer, but getting a gym-membership early in the season can jump start a winter workout routine. Most gyms have many alternative workouts that don’t include watching CNN on a treadmill. Try taking spin classes, step-aerobics, zumba,  pilates, yoga and even water aerobics (of course, mainly for those over 75 and have arthritis). The main perk for a gym-membership is the part where you get in the hot tub post workout. This calms down your muscles and gets you toasty enough to bear the winter breeze.

2. Snowboarding/Skiing
Most people don’t live next to a ski lodge, but snowboarding and skiing are great activities for you and a handful of friends. Just walking around with long paddles of anything stuck on your feet is a workout in itself. Add snow, a big hill, and you’re set for some cardio activity. Just please… be careful, and remember that trees are not your friends in this case.

3. Snowshoeing
Although snowshoeing may be a lost art, it can be fun if you live close to any sort of forest preserve. Snowshoes look like tennis rackets attached to your feet and help distribute your weight evenly across the area of snow so you don’t sink down. Because of the shape of the shoes though, you end up having to adjust how you walk. It would be a good idea to do this with a friend you can laugh at because people tend to look like ducks in this footwear.

4. Sledding
Sledding is perhaps a nostalgic word for most, but going sledding is a great cardio activity. You need a lot of heavy winter gear, a big hill, and a sled. While going down the hill is certainly the best aspect of this activity. You have to truck your ass up a hill covered in snow numerous times throughout the afternoon only to go down again. As counter productive as it may seem, sledding gets your heart pumping.

5. Curling
For all of you shuffleboard fans out there who are bummed out that the season is over, rest assured that curling season is only beginning. Curling is essentially shuffleboard on ice with a tad bit more strategy involved. The game consists of two teams, each with four players who slide heavy granite slabs to targets at the other end of the ice. Scored similarly to bags (or corn-hole), this game is good for your upper body. It has been nicknamed “chess on ice” because it involves intensive teamwork to ensure that the slabs are slid to the ideal location.

6. Take a ballet class
Laugh it off, but ballet is an incredibly active art form. Most medium sized cities in the U.S. have a ballet school that offers open classes. This means that you don’t need any sort of prior dance training to be able to take the class. These classes are geared towards adults. The first half of the class consists of something called barre work. Your body gets a good stretch, and you do a lot of leg exercises. The second half of the class is where the real workout is. You jump, you run, you hold your leg up for what may seem like an eternity, but it gets your blood flowing with the rest of ‘em. The best part is that open classes don’t have a dress code. So if you’re a little weary about wearing a leotard around a bunch of strangers, don’t worry, you can usually wear sweats.

7. Buy stuff for your living room
You don’t always need to spend a boatload of money on a home gym. Places like Target have simple weights and work out videos if you have a little extra room in your living room and happen to be snowed in. Buying workout equipment is always a smart investment (if you use it) because if it doesn’t get you working out asap, then it will sit around in your basement or closet and make you increasingly guilty until you do.

8. Shoveling snow
If you have a back problem, then hire the 13 year old boy down the street to shovel your front sidewalk, but if not, then get out there and work it out. Shoveling snow is the equivalent of lifting weights and can get you working up quite the sweat. If you find yourself on a role, go ahead and do the neighbor’s sidewalk and feel great about it all for the rest of the day, until it snows again of course.

Don’t let the wind, cold, ice, snow, slush, and sad faces put a cramp in your workout style. Often working out in the winter is more fun with more people. So get your friends to go out there with you and remember to bring the whiskey-cider. Cheers.

The Mind Body Connection

by Lizzy Sebuck

Through our research this week, we have concluded that there is a clear correlation between the health of the body to the physical condition of the mind. In the research we reviewed, we found that preservation of the body through exercise can result in a better preserved mind with age.

It turns out that working out not only adds brawn to your brain, but could be cloud nine for your noodle as well. In our research today, we’ve found that working out can actually make you a happier person! The mind- body connection works both ways: the health of the body can have an affect on the mind, as well as the condition of the mind having an affect on the body. Santa may be a jolly ole’ soul… but this research says a more fit and in-shape Santa would have an even better attitude if he would just put down those milk and cookies.

HOW YOUR BODY AFFECTS YOUR MIND

Feeling down? A little blue? Seasonal depression getting the best of ya? It’s okay, we don’t have to hug it out or anything, we have to work it out. Here’s the deal with working out: you do good things for your body, your body does good things for you. There are a few theories as to why exercise has such a positive affect on the human mind.

When you throw on your Richard Simmons sparkly shorts and jazzercise around your living room, your body releases an opiate called endorphins. Edorphins act as neurotransmitters; they transfer signals from cell to cell in the body. What endorphins say to your  nerve cells is something along the lines of “WOO-HOO!!!” (Think kid in a candy store type feelings). Your body releases endorphins during times of stress, pain, danger, excitement, and even in sex.  During a vigorous work-out, your brain releases endorphins to your nerve cells, which gives your body an overall feel-good sensation.

One source declares that exercise increases frontal lobe function as well as the activity of the hippocampus, which is a part of the brain that regulates emotion. While researchers are not quite sure why this happens, they’re happy about it anyways (literally).

In a study of mammals, researchers found that when exercise increased, so did levels of serotonin, dopamine ,and norepinephrine in the brain. Anti-depressants regulate the serotonin levels in the body, with the goal of making patients feel better. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that lives in the precortex of the brain. Dopamine affects cognition and behavior, and is associated with feelings of sexual gratification.

Listen, no one here is saying intercourse isn’t a great workout method. It will probably better your mood because of the visual pleasures, but pumping iron and hitting the gym have the same effects (come on, you can stop winking at your partner now). Norepinephrine is also referred to as noraddrenaline , so you can assume the affects this hormone can have on your body. Norepinephrine is a hormone relative to stress, when released increases heart rate and blood pressure. Norepinephrine has a very similar affect to adrenaline, as it gives humans a rush of sensations.

Dr. Blumenthal of Duke University did a little research on the actual chemical effects on the human mind as a result of regular exercise. In this study surveying 156 men and women, the subjects either received the anti-depressant Zoloft, or were given an exercise routine to follow.

“The data on exercise and mood have gotten even stronger.  One of the most telling studies was reported recently, in which an exercise program was equal in benefit to routine doses of Zoloft, a common antidepressant.The Zoloft and the exercise program were tapered off after 4 months; then the researchers tested the participants again, about 8 months after the treatments were stopped.  At that point, the exercise group was doing better than the group that had received Zoloft. Exercise appears to affect brain chemistry and brain cells in much the same way, perhaps exactly the same way, as antidepressant medications”

This data found that in older adults, exercise could be JUST AS effective in the treatment of depression as the highly prescribed anti depressant drug Zoloft! This research shows that you don’t have to pop pills to be happy- you could instead pump iron!
Exercise can also simply give a person peace of mind. Even the most stressed person in the world has to put their obnoxious boss or nagging mother-in-law out of mind to fully commit themselves in a Zumba routine. Exercise forces a person to put their worries out-of-mind for the time being, which can act as a type of therapy for some. Working out gives people confidence through changing their body shape or through pride by getting themselves to go to the gym at all. Regular athletic activity can , over time, reduce or completely eliminate anxiety issues. It is clear that taking care of your body can have a significant influence on the emotional state of your mind.

HOW YOUR MIND AFFECTS YOUR BODY

The mind- body connection works in both ways. When your body is feeling bad, you can work out to make your body and mind feel good again. When your mind is going through a trial of ‘the blues’ and you don’t take action, your body can take a toll. Worry and tension in life is inevitable , so when unexpected stressors like losing your job, or even a break up can bring on some pretty strong emotions. Your emotions can have a very damaging affect on your body dependant on the severity. According to a source, a bad mood can give a person back pain, chest pain, headaches, high blood pressure, and (here’s the kicker) sexual problems.

Our source also says that your mental health can have an influence on your overall health as well, as your immune system may suffer as a result of personal neglect.

“Poor emotional health can weaken your body’s immune system, making you more likely to get colds and other infections during emotionally difficult times. Also, when you are feeling stressed, anxious or upset, you may not take care of your health as well as you should. You may not feel like exercising, eating nutritious foods or taking medicine that your doctor prescribes. Abuse of alcohol, tobacco or other drugs may also be a sign of poor emotional health.” FamilyDoctor.org

An unhealthy mind can mean a pained body. Strong, negative emotions can not only leave the mind in turmoil, but a laundry list of physical ailments can arise as a result of depression.

Get it? It’s Brain from Pinky and the Brain… and he’s sad

It is obvious that working out has positive affects on the health of your body. In research we found earlier this week, we found that working out can aid your brain health and make you smarter. Today we’ve discovered that exercise can also increase your mood by giving your brain a boost of happy juice! So dig through your mom’s collection of Body Electric work out tapes, pump the speakers with Kenny Loggin’s Footloose, and get up in the gym workin’ on your fitness, Fergalicious, cause it turns out pumping that iron can do more for you than land you that date with the chick on the elliptical.

Sources:
How does Exercise Improve Mental Health?
Depression and anxiety: exercise eases symptoms
Mind/Body Connection: How your emotions affect your health
Effects of exercise training on older patients with major depression
Exercise and mood: not the usual rap

Sleeping Your Way To A Migraine Free Day

by Katie Gangloff

We’ve all had some form of a migraine once in our lifetime, and for us lucky ones twice a week. Staring at a computer screen all day can be one culprit to blame for migraines, your obnoxious boss may serve as another. If you’re still in school, the tedious and monotonous busy work can be a pain in the back of your eyes.

We read earlier this week that there is a home remedy for those agonizing migraines. Occam’s Taser finds the best, and sometimes the strangest ways to avoid migraines, and if they are inevitable, help get rid of them.

Sometimes getting rid of a migraine is as simple as a lifestyle change. Of course, eating right and exercising are always recommended, but not always an option with a busy schedule. A supplement that may also help is Fish Oil. It has properties that can promote nerve protection, which lowers the risk of memory loss. If you’re getting migraines and are unsure of where they’re coming from, try starting a food diary. This can reveal a pattern if one particular food is causing the migraines. The scent of some foods may even help, such as green apples, which we proposed as a remedy for multiple ailments earlier this week.

Another lifestyle change could be eating regularly to avoid low blood sugar.  Sarah, a college student from Chicago, Illinois tells us, “Certain things, like not eating for a long time, looking at a computer all day, or crying brings on migraines for me.” When asked how often she gets migraines or headaches Sarah says, “Not very often, I’d say once or twice a month at most.” Some college students don’t always get enough food because they aren’t living at home. A home cooked meal from mom or dad just isn’t the same when mom or dad aren’t making it.

You may be shocked to learn what foods may trigger migraines. Some people tend to consume these foods thinking they may help ease the symptoms, but that is not actually the case. A few examples include beer, wine, cheese, apple juice, coffee, and chocolate. I know what you are thinking.  “What?!  Chocolate?!  But I eat chocolate because it makes me forget about my headache!” Amines, present in chocolate, are often mistaken as a trigger to migraines. So, don’t fret chocolate can still help!

Graphic

Another way to prevent migraines is to develop healthy sleeping habits.  Getting roughly the same amount of sleep each night can ensure fewer migraines. Jonathan R, a hardworking businessman, says, “Lack of sleep, or irregular sleep, brings on migraines for me. Whenever I have a big project due at work I’m up late and sometimes don’t get any sleep at all. Although it’s worth it and my projects kick butt, I usually end up with a massive headache.” Even though staying up late sometimes is inevitable, at least we know where our migraines are coming from.

Now you might be thinking, “Holy cow, I eat healthy, regularly, get enough sleep, take fish oil pills, and I still get migraines.  Why the hell am I still getting them and what can possibly help when I get one?’

Pain-relieving medications are your best bet. If you want the best results, start taking these medications as soon as migraine symptoms start. Non-steroidal drugs include, ibuprofen, aspirin, or a combination of these plus caffeine, such as Excedrin. Watch out, if you take these often you might see reverse effects, like rebound headaches.

If medicine or trying to take preventive measures to fend off migraines turns you off, stick with a simple remedy.  Our favorite is taking a nap, and don’t forget that relaxing can help the awful pain in the back of your head. So turn off the lights and rest your head, even if it’s at your desk. You deserve it, your boss caused your headache anyway!

Even though trying new things is encouraged at Occam’s Taser, make sure to check with your doctor before using any of these medications.