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Favorite Web Sites
For Giving Information That Helps Us Have A Good Day...
I love cabelas.com! Ever since my grade school days, I've watched Cabela's catalog grow from a small upstart sporting goods catalog, to a literal dream machine of outdoor tools, that unlock new possibilities for outdoor adventures. There's a treasure trove of hunting and fishing supplies as well as items for the kitchen and living room, all related to our love of the outdoors.
At guidingvalues.com I've found inspiring stories and interesting blogs on deep topics regarding tapping into that wisdom which we all have. Created by Kevin Houchin, a property rights attorney, entrepreneur and business growth consultant, this is an attractive site and one which inspires new thinking in the creative and business realm. I like it!
3. Harmony Foundation Treatment Center, Estes Park, Colorado
Harmony Foundation Treatment Center is located in beautiful Estes Park, high in the Rocky Mountains. They provide chemical dependency treatment for alcoholism and other addictive disorders. I've had a number of patients go there and have positive experiences, feeling empowered by the individual and group experiences they had there.
There are many medical information web sites out there, but I prefer Medem for the clarity and conciseness in the information they provide on a variety of medical concerns. Sites that are wordy waste our time! See Medem.com.
This is a great site for information on what you can do to improve your physical and mental health. Click wellness.com.
6. Discover Magazine
Here's a great magazine to peak your curiousity about the brain and our world, and peak your information too. Click the link that follows for an article on the top 10 great mysteries about the brain, and find out fascinating facts about how the brain is made and operates. Great pictures! Click Discover.
7. Google Scholar
Now here's a great search engine! It is linked to the best of the world's scientific journals. Thousands of them! Use it to search a medication to see if studies show it does what it is supposed to do. Also use the site to test the validity of anyone's claim, that certain drug or herbal supplement or therapy does give a certain result. Click Google Scholar.
8. Locks Of Love helps cancer victims in their hour of greatest need
Use a haircut to help someone in need! People including children, who go through chemotherapy, often lose their hair and endure shame, embarrassment, and a host of other bad emotions...because of their hair loss. This web site shows you how you can donate your hair and help someone avoid this shameful experience. Click Locks of Love.
9. Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation
Here's a nonprofit group that has set aside, literally, millions of acres for wildlife, especially for the elk or wapiti. Click elk.
10. $4 prescription page for Walmart
11. Low cost prescription page for Walgreens.
Click low cost.
12. How The Brain Rewires Itself.
An article from Time magazine, but in plain English shows the science behind how the brain can create new connections to create new abilities. Literally, how the firing in the brain creates the wiring in the brain...and how you can control that process. Click Time.
13. Great Yoga Sites
At Belle Yoga, you can find articles on how yoga clears the mind and helps the body become stronger and healthier. Click Belle Yoga. Here's a great site explaining some of the great qualities of yoga and how to tap into them. Click OMspot.
14. Pub Med Central
The U.S. National Library of Medicine's powerhouse web site. Google Scholar can find articles, but this is a library. Here you can find articles and actuallly, like a real library, you can sign up to have new articles you are interested in sent to you, as they are published. Wow! Many other bells and whistles for the intellectually curious. Click Pub Med.
15. Fort Collins Newcomers Club, a great place for newcomers to Fort Collins!
Are you new to Fort Collins? Many are. Here's the place to go to meet "birds of a feather." I have had many people give good reviews to this social outlet in town. Click Newcomers.
Here is the grand daddy of the web's medical information sites. Go there for information on what ails you or might treat you. Click WebMD.
17, MedlinePlus Health Information
Here's another grand daddy...produced by the National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health. I've used it. You get another bank of information on the health topic of your choice...without possible interference from corporations. Click MedlinePlus.
18. Bipolar World, a great site reviewing treatment of bipolar disorder.
A web site by Dr. Phelps, a prolific writer and psychiatrist. Here's a great site to learn more about bipolar disorder and it's treatment. Click Bipolar World.
19. Eric Kandel is the great psychiatrist who has been a leader in the science of mindDiscover Magazine interviews psychiatrist and Nobel Laurea Dr. Eric Kandel. Insights to the mind by one who has studied it his whole professional life....click Nobel.
20. My Fitness Pal, a great web site for counting calories and weight loss super tools!
Overwhelmed by counting calories consumed and those burned up? Go here for a free calorie counter and other goodies. Click Pal.
21. Mayo Clinic, another great site for medical information
The great hospital formed by "The Brothers Mayo" has good stress managment advice at the Stress Clinic.
22. NIMH, the mother of all sites for brain science information
This is a freight train of sites. The Mother Of All sites on brain and mental health information. Go there and get lots of information with a minimum of commercial influence. Click National Institutes Of Mental Health.
23. Depression is as biological as a heart attack and here's hundreds of articles that show it!
Here's the mother of all articles reviewing the evidence that depression is biological. It's not "in your head," but depression involves changes in brain structure, chemistry, activation of inflammatory cytokines, and a whole host of other biological events. Wayne Drevets pulled this article together and I think it is the best out there. Click biology.
24. Exercise activates dozens of genes in the DNA in our brain...amazing and true! Here's the science behind the facts.
Here's some cutting edge articles on how exercise activates our brain to higher levels of activity. VGF is one of a whole series of 33 genes that are turned on by exercise! In an article by a brilliant psychiatrist, Dr. Stephen Dubovsky, he points out VGF benefits brain physiology. In the study he reviews, VGF helped the brain function more effectively, and synthetic VGF even acted as an antidepressant. A mutated form of VGF caused depression like behavior in mice. VGF is a big factor in brain health. And these 33 exercise genes sit in our memory center, hippocampus! Once activated, the VGA gene turns on a whole cascade of good chemical reactions in the memory center resulting in release of brain derived nerve growth factor which in turn activates growth of new nerves, nerve connections and nerve chemicals used to send messages. If there ever was a "smar pill" this is it. It's like you go out jogging and come home to find your car has had an oil change, been tanked up on gas, with the wheels balanced and realigned. Nice! Click brain upgrade and gene therapy for the brain to read these articles.
25. Mood Tracker, a mood chart for tracking shifting moods
This site gives you a mood chart to track symptoms of your mood swings. Very popular and free! Click MOOD CHART.
26. Health Central News, a great Colorado publication for wellness news and information.
A great local publication in Northern Colorado featuring articles on health and wellness from area practitioners. Click Health Central News.
27. God gave us our intelligence...and Michaelangelo showed the miracle that happens in our brain by painting it on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Brain science in art! He knew brain structure from dissections of the human body...talk about genius!
Michaelangelo believed God gave Adam intelligence, the ability to know, at creation, and expressed this in his painting on the celiing of the Sistine Chapel. Click Chapel.
28. Here's a great community service group to join in Loveland! Loveland Elks Lodge #1051
Since I moved into the area in 1996, Elks members Sharon and Greg Welch have kept me updated on all the great community service activities their club has done. Yes, I did see Greg as Santa one Christmas! They have a great time giving back to the community. In October Sharon and the Loveland Elks brought in speaker Milton Creagh to help families and their kids learn to say no to street drugs. They and other Elks members have "heart of gold." A great group to join! Click article to see an article about Sharon at one event, and Elks to see their lodge website. Way to go you two, for being the angels you are!
29. What meditation does in the brain is help nerves grow bigger to send signals for peace and good focusing ability. Here's the scientific proof.
When you are in the present moment, what areas are doing what in the brain? The answers are fascinating and part of the new wave of information about how the brain works, or what is called "science of the mind," championed by Eric Kandel, MD, a Nobel Prize winning physician. See Brain Waves for an article on what the brain does in meditation.
30. OCD treatment sites
Good resources for information on obsessive compulsive disorder and its treatment are available at:
31. Social Anxiety sites
32. Boost Your Brain By Knowing How It Works! Here's the science behind structures in the brain and their dedicated purposes. Great pictures and great science are here!
The brain grows new nerve cells, 4 million per day for adults, and up to 15 million per hour when we were very young! Our brain is our most amazing place in our body. Knowing how it works can help you build a better life. The Franklin Institute has done a great job with this site, on the human brain, with great colorful pictures of nerves and explanations of how different physical and mental exercises actually helps the brain grow new nerves! See Franklin Institute's Human Brain.
This next article, on WebMD, shows how people are using exercise to help with attention, in ADHD, and to help with "brain fog," for people going "a hundred miles an hour with your hair on fire." (My words here.) See WEBMD.
High resolution MRI's confirm brain benefits in this article, see MRI.
Practicing actions in your imagination actually helps the brain rewire, or reorganize itself. In this Time magazine article, you can read how students who practiced (in their mind) playing a finger exercise on (an imaginary) piano, actually expanded the part of the brain dedicated to hand movement. Students playing on a real piano saw the same thing happen. This is a great article to illustrate that mental pracitce really works! See Firing Creates The Wiring.
33. La Luna Center In Fort Collins is a great place for treatment of eating disorders!
La Luna Center here in Fort Collins is a great place for treatment of eating disorders, such as anorexia nervosa and bulemia. They use a holistic approach emphasizing yoga, mindfulness training, group therapy. They are all about supporting the individual with all the individual's strengths and wisdom to overcome the behavior problems they are up against. Want to know more? Click La Luna Center. I've met with Diana Hill, PhD, Clinical Direcctor, and found her very kind, personable and well educated in mindfulness cognitive behavior therapy and how to make group therapy work so people can overcome their eating disorders. They offer a number of free wellness workshops and free consultations can be scheduled at 970-744-9292.
34. Where to go for prescription assistance...getting a price help on pricey medications.
Bridges To Access is the site run by Glaxo Smith Kline where people with income of $45,000 or less may qualiify for free supplies of the following medicines: lamictal, parnate, paxil, wellbutrin SR, Wellbutrin XL. See Bridges To Access.
For assistance on receiving the following medicines...Geodon, Lyrica, Nardil (phenelzine), neurontin, xanax, xanax xr, and zoloft....see Pfizer Prescription Assistance.
For assistance on these medicines....concerta, haldol, invega, risperdol, topomax...see Johnson and Johnson Prescription Assistance.
How about one site that searches over 200 prescription assistance plans for you and finds you a plan? As seen on Montel Williams TV commercials, this is the site! Go here and see what's available. Hundreds of pharmaceutical companies are giving away medicines. See if you qualifty. Go to Free Medicine Revolution.
35. Serenity Prayer
The differece between things you can control and things your can't control is a profound one. Theologian Reinhold Niebuhr pondered this and wrote this prayer that has been used by hundreds of thousands of people all over the world. Click this link to read it and do some wondering yourself!
36. We are drowning in information and starving for wisdom...
Great quote from a great thinker, EO Wilson. Click Wisdom for more.
37. Brain Spect Imaging
See Functional Brain Imaging for spect scans and their interpretation. Dr. Gregory Hipskind is a neurobehavioral physician, who both teaches the interpretation of brain scans to other doctors, and interprets the images himself. He is one of the very best in the country. To see more about his work, click Functional Brain Imaging.
38. Why dualism, or thinking the mind is separate from the body is "nutty as a fruit cake."
Most educated people today realize that our thoughts and feelings come from the physical working parts of our physical brain. How it does that is one of the true wonders of the world. But then there are those who believe you can just change your thoughts and that will change your feelings and its just that simple. These are the people who believe the mind is separate from the body. Somehow the mind comes from the nonphysical part of the brain, even though no one has ever seen that area of the brain in human history. The idea of dualism is that the mind is separate from the physical things in the brain. The brain has two (dual) parts. It is just a philosophical idea by a mathematician, Rene Descartes, who said it in the 1600's, and there is not one scientific study to prove it. Yet the philosophy has proved very popular. The idea is false. Many studies now clearly point out what areas of the brain do different things, including feel emotions, and many of these studies are on the internet. Go to brainplace.com or go to googlescholar and search "brain structure and emotions" and you'll see many studies that show evidence that we do know how the brain works to generate thoughts and emotions.
Descartes even did live dissection on animals because he believed they didn't have feelings, only humans have a "mind" and therefore can have feelings.
So if you are one of those who have been feeling like your mind is nonphysical, and people don't need to take medication to help the brain work well for emotions, then you have joined the ranks of people who have some pretty bizarre ideas that lead them to do some pretty bizarre and cruel things. For more on this, see the Wikipedia article on DESCARTES.
If you want to read about other people's ideas on the mind body problem in philosophy, see this link MIND. Descartes ideas about dualism sound slick and convincing but rest on the assumption (quite false!) that our mind's ideas are true. In fact our mind comes up with false ideas all the time, and so the mind is quite fallable, and therefore the idea that the mind is some perfect nonphysical entity falls apart. the MIND link provides a great criticism of dualism and shows it to be nothing more than the phoney baloney of some 17th century philosopher! Thank you Wikipedia for these articles.
There is an impact to what we believe. Many people quit their antidepressant or mood stabilizer within 6 months of feeling better, often out of an influence from thinking their nonphysical mind can now "get a grip" on their mood, and they don't need a medication. Because taking a medication for a part of the body that shouldn't have any problems is bad. This kind of dualism thinking is dangerous. One in five people with depression or bipolar disorder who don't take their medication will kill themselves. Read the news articles in your paper. Dualistic thinking has an impact and it kills people, because it gets them to quit the medications that were helping their brain function better. Dualistic thinking kills people because it leads them to believe they can control their brain "on their own." and it they can't it is because there is a problem with the person's character (they are weak or somehow defective or damaged). When the truth is the brain is an organ like any other in the body. It can make mistakes. It can have problems. Depression and bipolar disorder are chemical events cascading in the brain, like dominoes falling, creating every greater physical problems in the brain, as summarized in this excellent article BRAIN..
Depression, bipolar disorder, and other problems with the brain are simply creating painful experiences to get help. Like pain signals elsewhere in the body signal the person to do something to take care of the problem--such as pain in a finger signals a person to pull out the sliver, or pain in a tooth signals a person to seek a dentist, or pain in the stomach signals a person to take a stomach acid reducing pill--so emotional pain is simply the brain's way of saying it has some problems and needs help.
Dualism says if you have emotional problems, you are the problem, and that is simply wrong.
39. Estrogen dramatically affects mood and anxiety...here's the science behind PMS, menopause and other female hormone issues that affect our emotions
One of the most powerful hormones in the body to affect the brain are the sex hormones, among them estrogen, progesterone and testosterone. All can be added to the body and make the mood better...or worse. I have seen depression improve with more estrogen or more progesterone added to a woman's oral hormone replacement therapy. Usually it is an addition of estrogen, but occasionally progesterone is added. Testosterone can also be added and I've seen that dramatically help mood with some women. Some men too with low blood levels of testosterone can see their mood dramatically improve with the addition of testosterone given by injection or cream.
Why do sex hormones so dramatically affect mood?
The answers are complex and important. Both men and women see dramatic changes in their sex hormones as they get into their teen years (and hormone levels increase) and later in their 40's women may see female sex hormones decrease with perimenopause and menopause. Dramatic depression episodes can be accompanied with work failure experiences, emotional turmoil, panic attacks, relationship troubles, even divorce. Before perimenopause, premenstrual depression and anger problems can cause similar suffering.
These sex hormones actually attach to messenger molecules within the nerves in the emotional areas of the brain, such as the amygdala (the brain's anger center), and within the anterior cingulate gyrus (the depression center). Estrogen at the right blood level then helps nerves send "happy signals" to the "feel good" areas of the brain, and "calm down" signals to the anxiety and anger centers. With too much estrogen or too little, the nerves can't send these signals, even if the chemical serotonin is connecting to receptors on the surface of the nerve trying to send these "feel good" signals. Too much or too little of a sex hormone is like a "short circuit" in nerves trying to send "feel good" messages to the "feel good centers" in the brain.
For a review of this fascinating brain science, see the link Hormones and Brain Science. This is an excellent review article by the Harvard psychiatrist Lee Cohen, MD.
40. Cognitive behavioral therapy and interpersonal therpay have their roots in stoic philosophy in ancient greece and they truely have a powerful impact on depression and anxiety disorders! It actually changes how the brain works!
The foundation of treatment of anxiety and mood disorders involves using medication to control the "chemical imbalance" in the brain, and cognitive behavior therapy to turn around the negative thoughts and negative behaviors that also can worsen a person's mood.
In fact, doing both medicine and cognitive behavior therapy works better than either approach alone...more than 70% of people using both approaches reported a dramatic improvement in their mood.
For more about cognitive behavior therapy, its history and method and purpose, and the science behind why it is so profoundly useful for people, is reviewed in this wikipedia article, click CBT WORKS.
One of the early founders of CBT, Dr, Aaron Beck, said he was in part inspired by the Ancient Greece philosopher Epictetus, who said thoughts drive people's happiness or sadness. The stoics advocated thinking in ways that worked with reality, the way things are, rather than fighting the way things are with irrational thoughts. For more on stoicism, see the link Stoic philosophy.
42. Love the outdoors? Colorado Mountain Club is the way to go in Fort Collins!
To learn more, click Fort Collins Chapter Of Colorado Mountain Club.
43. In A Crisis? Mountain Crest Behavioral Health Care Center Can Help, In Fort Collins, Colorado
Psychiatric crisis involve when a person is in a dire emergency, is suicidal or in some other way can't go on. The situations are often complicated but the doctors at Mountain Crest do a great job sorting through the myriad of factors and helping people through times of crisis. I've seen the treatment teams there do a great job since I moved to Fort Collins in 1996. For more information, click Mountain Crest.
44. Fort Collins, Colorado Meet Up Groups Give You Options To Meet People Who Like What You Like!
Whether new in Fort Collins, Colorado or not, it can be hard to meet people with common interests. However, I've heard good things from people checking out Meet Up groups in Fort Collins. As of January, 2008, there are more than 100 groups, with people getting together to do everything from meditation to movies, from cooking to hiking and conserving the Poudre River. From board games to ballroom dancing and swing, from vegetarian cooking to preparing raw food to photography and fine arts.! Check it out at Fort Collins Meet Up.
45. Review Scientific Data On Herbal Supplements And Alternative Medication At Medtropolis.com!
Click on Medtropolis.com above to go to the site. Also a virtual body tour is available.
46. Exercise coaching and workout routines on a budget at CSU Adult Fitness Program...for the public!
Want coaching to help with weight loss but can't afford some price health club? The CSU Adult Fitness Program has exercise coaching, a weight room, and meetings set up for 2-3 times per day, with coaches who cheer you on! Hey, now that's service! It often takes someone who is your coach and cheerleader to get that social support for a person to stay with a workout plan...and here it is at CSU for the public. Prices are lower than that for health clubs and there is no year long committment, signup fees, etc. Prices are very reasonable for those wanting a workout routine that really works. For more information, click CSU Adult Fitness Program.
47. Dr. Ray Watson, Psychotherapist
Dr. Ray has a great practice of psychotherapy in Fort Collins, focusing on cognitive behavioral therapy. He has a radio show as well, And he's written a book on the art of pschotherapy. And he's been teaching psychology on the collegiate level. I highly recommend his work! Click for his website at Dr. Ray.