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HOW BIOMIMETICS HELP YOUR BODY

HOW BIOMIMETICS HELP YOUR BODY

What is Biomimetics?

Biomimetics offers an empathetic, interconnected understanding of how life works and ultimately where we fit in. It is a practice that learns from and mimics the strategies used by species alive today. The goal is to create products, processes, and policies — new ways of living — that solve our greatest design challenges sustainably and in solidarity with all life on earth. We can use biomimetics (often referred to as biomimic), to not only learn from nature’s wisdom, but also heal ourselves — and this planet — in the process.

Biomimetics Brings Relief To The Body

We’re stressed. Our planet is stressed. Many are losing hope for solving the climate crisis and its many negative effects on ecosystems across the world. Biomimicry gives us hope, because we know the solutions for our greatest challenges are here, accessible, and validated by the many species still alive today. By using nature as our mentor, we get to experience the powerful healing effects it has by connecting to the natural world — while also finding empowering relief to solve these challenges together.

The 3 Essentials Elements of Biomimicry

When translating nature’s strategies into design, the science of the practice involves three essential elements: Emulate, Ethos, and (Re)Connect. These three components are infused in every aspect of biomimicry and represent these core values at its essence (Biomimicry Institute).

  • Emulate: The scientific, research-based practice of learning from and then replicating nature’s forms, processes, and ecosystems to create more regenerative designs.
  • Ethos: The philosophy of understanding how life works and creating designs that continuously support and create conditions conducive to life.
  • (Re)Connect: The concept that we are nature and find value in connecting to our place on Earth as part of life’s interconnected systems. (Re)Connect as a practice encourages us to observe and spend time in nature to understand how life works so that we may have a better ethos to emulate biological strategies in our designs.
The word biomimicry was coined by Janine Benyus many years ago (1997) when she came out with her book Biomimicry: Innovation Inspired by Nature.  Her book is a collection of stories describing the work of scientists, engineers, and inventors who were translating their fascinating observations of functional strategies found in biology into innovative technologies.  Before this book came out, this inspired-by-Nature approach to invention and innovation was referred to with terms like bionicsbio-engineering, or biomimetics.  Benyus recognized that these terms might feel too technical and off-putting for her readers (mostly people interested in Nature), so she came up with the term ‘biomimicry’, which she felt was more approachable. Biomimicry for Creative Innovation,
 

 

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HOW FEET AFFECT THE BRAIN

HOW FEET AFFECT THE BRAIN

Agile feet can help to improve one's balance, posture, gait, and movement overall. However, feet do not function independently of the body or brain. In fact, extensive research points to a definitive foot-brain connection, which is so dynamic that when activated, it allows us to move with calm, certainty, and security.

If you wonder why you have brain fog, depression, worsening memory, or slow thinking, the clues may lie in your feet — your foot health can tell you whether your brain is receiving enough oxygen.  Poor circulation to the feet creates myriad symptoms that signal circulation in the brain may also be poor, depriving your brain of oxygen, nutrients, and function. Troublesome symptoms aren’t the only bad part of poor brain circulation. Insufficient oxygen to the brain speeds up brain aging and raises your risk of vascular dementia, and it is the second most common type of dementia after Alzheimer’s. Check out these common signs to watch for below:

  • Got cold feet? Your brain could be oxygen-deprived: Got cold toes and feet? If you have chronically cold feet, you may want to investigate whether your brain is getting enough oxygen and nutrients from sufficient circulation. Have someone check if your feet and toes are colder than your ankles or calves. If so, your feet are not getting enough circulation, and your brain may not be either. Cold fingers and a cold nose are other symptoms.
  • Chronic fungal growth in toenails: If you have chronic fungal nail infections or chronic athlete’s foot, this can mean poor circulation is depriving your feet of enough oxygen, nutrients, and immune cells to ward off infection. This makes the feet and toenails more prone to fungal infections and fighting them a losing battle.
  • Poor capillary refill time and white toenail beds: Are the nail beds of your toes a healthy pink or a pale white? If circulation is poor, the nail beds are more white than pink. Another test is to press down on a nail bed and observe how quickly the color returns.  The pink color should return instantly. If it takes a few seconds this indicates poor blood flow to the feet and most likely the brain as well.
  • Cramping in the feet: When circulation to the feet is poor, it’s common to experience foot cramps that are difficult to relieve. The feet cramp due to lack of blood and oxygen to power the muscles. You may also experience cramps in your hands, such as when writing or typing. Both are signs circulation to the brain may be poor.
  • Poor brain circulation: If you think poor brain circulation may be a culprit in your brain fog, memory loss, depression, or slow thinking, it’s important to figure out why your circulation is low. Investigate health condition that cause poor blood flow and lack of oxygenation, such as hypothyroidism, anemia, a heart condition, diabetes, low blood pressure, smoking, or an overly sedentary lifestyle. Normal blood pressure is 120/80. If the top or bottom number is 10 or more points below, that means the pressure is not high enough to push blood into the furthest ends of the body. Low blood pressure is typically accompanied by low blood sugar and adrenal fatigue. In addition to addressing root causes, one way to boost blood flow to the brain is through bursts of high intensity exercise, even if it’s just for a few minutes.

The Foot Brain Connection

The  importance of healthy feet is often undervalued.  In fact, the health of one’s feet is often either neglected or abused.  Constrictive or ill-shaped shoe wear, like high heels, can often lead to foot dysfunction. However, feet do not function independently of the body or brain.  In fact, extensive research points to a definitive foot-brain connection, which is so dynamic that when activated, it allows us to move with calm, certainty, and security.  

Fascia, tendons, and ligaments are ionically charged and receive sensory information providing feedback to the brain which enables us to move with skill.   There are:

  • Over 7000 nerve endings in the sole of the foot
  • 26 bones in each foot that work with intrinsic muscles to provide a static or dynamic balance
  • 250,000 sweat glands that can produce 4-6oz. of perspiration a day in active feet
  • 33 joints, and over 100 muscles, ligaments, and tendons  

All of these components, contribute information for sensorimotor control.  Everything must work synergistically to provide postural stability, balance, grip strength, shock absorption, and mobility for quiet standing, gait, and dynamic movement (The Functional Neurology Center).

How to Restore blood flow to your feet and your brain

This foot-brain connection empowers us to move in space.  Feeling our stability we gain confidence for more unbounded action and movement patterns, without it our mobility becomes restricted and diminished.  Therefore, maintaining foot health, and avoiding injuries from overuse are vital to fluid movement and optimal performance. 

Along with exercise, wearing appropriate footwear can help improve balance, especially in older people who may struggle with mobility and balance issues. This is a 24 hour / 7 day rule, whether out running errands or at home cooking dinner. The right footwear can support and strengthen your foot and arch, in turn enhancing overall balance and mobility. 

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HOW TO STOP JOINT PAIN

HOW TO STOP JOINT PAIN

Joint pain is an extremely common condition. The US Centers for Disease Control estimates that roughly one-quarter of the millions of Americans who experience arthritis will, in fact, suffer from severe joint pain.

The usual remedies for pain, including pharmaceuticals, often do not achieve the results hoped for. Unfortunately, they also come with serious risks of addiction and dependency that make them less-than-ideal long-term treatment options.

So, how can you stop joint pain safely and effectively? Read on to find out practical steps you can take to eliminate or reduce joint pain.

Exercise More
By this point, encouragements for more exercise are a dime-a-dozen. Nearly any healthcare or wellness publication will extoll the proven benefits of exercise on quality of life.

Exercise is an eternal answer to poor health, though, because it indeed has enormous potential to improve the function of the body. After all, we evolved to spend our lives outdoors on the hunt or in the field getting exercise and fresh air and sunlight, not cooped up in an office.  Even minimal amounts of exercise like walking for a few minutes a day can do wonders as far as alleviating your chronic pain.

Work Turmeric Into Your Diet
Although turmeric is most often associated with Indian culinary preparations such as curry, this Indian spice has so much more to offer in terms of its painkilling ability.

Turmeric has long been used in ancient Indian medicine. Now, emerging evidence from scientific study of turmeric and its bioactive various bioactive compounds can substantially reduce chronic arthritis pain as effectively as pharmaceutical drugs: "8–12 weeks of standardized turmeric extracts (typically 1000 mg/day of curcumin) treatment can reduce arthritis symptoms (mainly pain and inflammation-related symptoms).

Arch Support
The human foot is naturally designed to function with an "arch" on the inside portion of the foot. If there is some flaw to the natural function of the arch, chronic pain may develop. This concern is especially relevant for athletes and workers people who stand for hours on their feet.

SelectFlex Orthotic Insoles are high-quality shoe inserts proven to alleviate foot pain caused by a poor arch. The product has customizeable arch support so that the insoles can be adjusted to deliver maximum comfort. These types of therapeutic devices are especially beneficial for individuals who experience Morton's Neuroma.

Include More Fiber in Your Diet
Fiber reliably decreases the severity of pain in a large portion of individuals who usually take sub-optimal amounts of fiber through their diets.

The reality of the standard American diet is that very few US adults get enough fiber in their diet, often sacrificing nutritional meals packed with healthy fiber for fast food and processed food, which generally have much lower amounts of fiber.

The simplest way to include more fiber in your diet is to focus on getting at least 3-4 servings of vegetables and/or fruits each day. Just be cautious about too much sugar from overconsumption of fruits.

Purge Added Sugar From Your Diet
Of course, Mary Poppins said that a "spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down." What she didn't know, apparently, is how devastating sugar can be to health, including by driving the very inflammation that often causes chronic pain.

Accordingly, do all that you can to limit your sugar intake. This means cutting out foods with added sugar like sodas or candies and in their place looking for natural substitutes.

One good rule of thumb is to spend the vast majority of your time at the grocery store on the outside portion of the store where fresh, unprocessed foods are more likely to be found.

If you are diligent about getting more exercise, eating more nutritious foods, filled with healthy fiber and free of processed sugar, taking turmeric supplements, and possibly changing your footwear to include support with SelectFlex Orthotics, you are sure to see improvements in your pain levels. 

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