Snoop Dogg, whose real name is Calvin Cordozar Broadus Jr., took the hip hop world by storm in 1992 when he was discovered and promoted by Dr. Dre. His freshman album Doggystyle shot to Billboard’s #1 spot earned quadruple platinum. His music belonged to the controversial genre that brought calls for censorship for promoting violence and misogyny, and Snoop’s life backed up his words. He denied belonging to a Rollin’ 20s Crips as youth in Long Beach, CA, but once tried for murder of a rival gang member (bodyguard off for self defense). In and out of jail for cocaine possession and other charges after high school. Plummeted into spiritual chaos, before rocketing in rap world, before he became reviled and revered, kid Snoop went to church with his family, singing and playing piano at Golgotha Trinity Baptist Church. So he’s come full circle. Since launching hip-hop career, Snoop Dogg proved to be one of most enduring successful rappers, selling 35 million albums worldwide. Through the years and different albums, Snoop backed away from unsavory G-funk after his friend Tupac Shakur was killed in a drive-by shooting. After his producer on the label Death Row, Suge Knight, was indicted for racketeering. Marijuana smoking became his favourite motif and signature of his music. He once bragged he smoked 80 blunts a day. And always looking to cash in on shock value, Snoop claimed to Rolling Stone, unlike other rappers who adopt a pimp persona, he actually worked as pimp between 2003 and ‘04 gave it up on advice of fellow pimps to spend time with family. He ventured into television and movies, including Doggy Fizzle Televizzle, Snoop Dogg’s FatherHood, Dogg After Dark. He turned his acquittal of murder charges in February 1996 to short movie Murder Was the Case. In 2009, Snoop converted to Nation of Islam and publicly praised minister Louis Farrakhan. In 2012, he converted to Rastafari movement and, changing his name to “Snoop Lion,” produced clumsy reggae album. All the while, his grandmother and mother praying for their prodigal son. They are elated by announcement of return to Christ with a gospel recording. “Momma said, ‘God told me you gonna do this years ago.’ She been waiting on me,” he says. Read the rest of the article on Snoop Dogg Christian.
A team of researchers from Loma Linda University have revealed that eating the dark chocolate with a 70 per cent cocoa content has positive effects on the stress level, mood, memory and immunity. Dr Lee Berk, who led the study, said: “For years, we looked at influence of dark chocolate on neurological functions from the standpoint of sugar content that more sugar makes people happier. This is first time we looked at impact of large amounts of cocoa in doses of small regular-sized chocolate bar in humans over short or long periods of time and are encouraged by the findings. The studies show higher concentration of cocoa has more positive impact on cognition, memory, mood, immunity or other beneficial effects. Researchers carried out two studies to test the effect of eating dark chocolate. In a first study, the team looked at the impact of eating 70 percent cocoa in chocolate on human immune system, and found the treat set off cascade of reactions in turn reduced inflammation. A second study analysed brain health benefits of eating the dark chocolate, and found snack enhanced neuroplasticity in turn boosted memory. Team suggests benefits lie in a chemical flavonoid found in cocoa, plan to carry out follow-up studies to understand the mechanism behind these effects. A dark chocolate made from cocoa plant means it contains many of the health benefits of dark vegetables. These benefits from flavonoids which act as antioxidants.Endorphins bind receptors in the brain leading to feelings of euphoria, like the kind joggers get from runner’s high. The dark chocolate is a top dietary source of tryptophan amino acid like a serotonin neurotransmitter of happiness positive mood. Health benefits of chocolate often endorsed by Reader’s Digest and others recommend eating the dark chocolate for health wellness. This dark chocolate stimulates the production of endorphin chemicals in the brain to create feelings of pleasure. Dark chocolate contains the serotonin antidepressant that elevates mood,” says Scritchfield. Flavanols are believed to play a role in chocolate’s mood enhancing effects. Dark chocolate benefits your brain to improve memory for good moods. Even the single doses of high-flavanol dark chocolate shown to improve performance of cognitive tests including memory test in healthy adult. Contentment is noticed in just 30 Days as new study reveals the dark chocolate with a high percentage of cocoa benefits mood so reduces anxiety. Cocoa benefits eaters due to the root compound called polyphenol shown to positively improve mood and enhance calmness. And those without any clinical depression, anxiety, mood swings gain good mood boost.
Premensttual syndrome (PMS) has a wide variety of signs and symptoms, including mood swings, tender breasts, food cravings, fatigue, irritability and depression. It’s estimated that as many as 3 out of every 4 menstruating women experience some form of premenstrual syndrome. Symptoms tend to recur in a predictable pattern. But the physical and emotional changes you experience with premenstrual syndrome may vary from just slightly noticeable all the way to intense. You don’t have to let these problems control your life. Treatments and lifestyle adjustments can help you reduce or manage signs and symptoms of premenstrual syndrome. Symptom’s list of potential signs of premenstrual syndrome is long, but most women only experience a few of these problems.
Emotional & Behavioural Signs
- Tension or anxiety
- Depressed mood
- Crying spells
- Mood swings, irritability or anger
- Appetite changes, food cravings
- Trouble falling asleep (insomnia)
- Social withdrawal
- Poor concentration
- Change in libido
Physical signs and symptoms
- Joint or muscle pain
- Weight gain by fluid retention
- Abdominal bloating
- Breast tenderness
- Acne flare-ups
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Alcohol intolerance
For some, physical pain and emotional stress are severe enough to affect their daily lives. Regardless of their symptom severity, signs and symptoms generally disappear within four days of the start of menstrual period for most women. A number of women with premenstrual syndrome of disabling symptoms every month. PMS premenstrual dysphoric disorder PMDD signs, symptoms include depression, mood swings, anxiety, anger feeling overwhelmed, difficulty of focus concentrating, irritability and tension.
When to see a doctor
If you haven’t been able to manage your premenstrual syndrome with lifestyle changes and the symptoms of PMS are affecting health and daily activities, see a doctor. Exact causes of premenstrual syndrome is unknown, but several factors may contribute to the condition:
- Cyclic changes in hormones. Signs, symptoms of premenstrual syndrome change with hormonal fluctuations and disappear with pregnancy and menopause.
- Chemical changes in the brain. Fluctuations of serotonin, a brain chemical (neurotransmitter) that’s thought to play a crucial role in mood states, could trigger PMS symptoms. Insufficient amounts of serotonin impact premenstrual depression, as well as to fatigue, food cravings and sleep problems.
- Depression. Some women with severe premenstrual syndrome have undiagnosed depression, though depression alone does not cause all of the symptoms.
Whatever food is put into your mouth, she explains, is going to spend the next three days traveling through digestive tract, permeating intestinal walls to be absorbed into your body’s circulatory system and tissues. “Your overall health is significantly affected by what you eat, she tells Elite Daily. Dr. Trattner says the research really shows our guts are so sensitive and filled with impressionable nerves they are, indeed, as Faulisi said, often referred to as our second brain. “The digestive system doesn’t think for us, but it does play a key role in certain diseases and communicates with brain,” Dr. Trattner explains. So, along with the foods you eat, Dr. Trattner recommends making probiotics a regular part of your daily routine, avoid refined foods with lots of sugar, estrogens and fat. Therefore keep away from all processed foods or at least make it a point to snack on them in moderation. You will notice boost in your mood and mind as result. The body of evidence linking diet and mental health is growing at a rapid pace as reports show level of mental health problems of eating fewer healthy foods. Fresh fruits, vegetables, organic foods and meals made from scratch are more healthy foods than the chips and crisps, chocolate, ready meals and takeaways. Food and mood, mind the mental health charity helps those with mental health problems to eat better good mood foods. Vegetables and fruit contain a lot of the minerals, vitamins and fibre we need to keep us physically and mentally healthy. Eating variety of the different coloured fruits and vegetables every day means you will get a good range of nutrients. Eating well for mental health says Royal College of Psychiatrists in health advice. Modern user-friendly evidence-based information on eating well, nutrition and mental health is produced by the Royal College of Psychiatrists. The link between food and mental health by the Psychological Association recommends good nutrition to improve your mental health. So put all this newfound foodie knowledge to the test next time you’re shopping for groceries, and pop a few of the recommended foods like fermented coconut yogurt, sauerkraut along with probiotics, into your basket. Growing research literature answers Western-style dietary habits in particular under special scrutiny. The modern high rate of depression says what you eat affects mental health. A large body of evidence existing confirms diet is as important to mental health as it is to physical health,” says Felice Jacka, the president of the International Society for Nutritional Psychiatry Research. “A healthy diet is protective and unhealthy diet is risk factor in depression anxiety.” So pay more attention to the food you eat to improve your mood and mental health.
Actively deep listening to hear correctly, affirm and understand what people are saying means a lot to them. It is more than being a sounding board to help talk and discuss life matters. To be allowed into the deepest inner thoughts of a person takes courage so be present in here and now. Affirm by nodding and agreeing, saying “yes” to fully engage in the conversation is part of the process to ensure properly hearing person. And a feedback clarifies topics discussed to reassure person listening attentively. Be polite if speaker feels stressed, anxious, calm them, pay attention to help them open up to share innermost feelings or thoughts. It is encouraging to build their confidence to reflect on their plans and fears. Art of listening, hearing is act of love, takes commitment, ability to read between lines and desire to understand, appreciate person talking. Greatest gift coaches have is ability to help people to know where they are coming from. Understandably needs to provide a safe space to see life from their standpoint is so important and necessary. Life can feel lonely sometimes so knowing that someone really cares and understands matters. It is important to open up to share true feelings without thinking being judged. Health and wellbeing help the lonely or isolated to express inner thoughts and their ideas of life. A phone call to friend or passing time of the day with colleagues is what makes society happy and cohesive by including others. Idealised happiness of fantasy, domestic bliss on social media on the Facebook is unnatural needs so private, confidential space helps open up to deal with what is not working in life.Coach Kenny Mammarella D’Cruz, The Man Whisperer, talks of importance of men opening up, sharing “without any judgments, ‘shoulds’ or ridicule” as he regularly feels safe in his men’s groups. His workshops and meet-ups invaluable for men from teens to pensioners and offers support, understanding and the reassurance that someone really has got your back. Today ask someone about themselves, really listen, reflect and say something generous or insightful back. Watch their faces. Our ears never get us into trouble and here is a lovely quote, as David Augsburger’s thought sums up: “Being heard is so close to being loved that for the average person they are almost indistinguishable.”
Today our interconnectedness requires caring compassion more than ever before for a common good for all in society. In John Ford’s film The Searchers, John Wayne’s character spends years looking for his niece Debbie kidnapped as child by Comanche Indians. When he finally finds her, she wanted to stay with her Comanche husband rather than return home. Although shocking in the film, it’s historically accurate. Whites captured by American Indians commonly chose to stay with their captors and the book cites a case of a captive woman who hid from her would-be rescuers. Sebastian Junger argues in his book that people need to feel connected to others. During war often people from different classes mixed in the ways they did not before and joined together in the face of a common enemy. More astonishingly, from the earliest days of Europeans in America, settlers of both sexes ran away to join Indian tribes. This was not just a few people but hundreds of hundreds as the practice was so rife in the early 1600s settler leaders made it an offence with harsh punishments. But over the following centuries people still ran off in huge numbers. It hardly happened the other way, Indians did not want to join white society. The attraction argues Junger, was the sense of community, the importance of the tribe, evident in other primates primitive human societies. The superficial attractive American Indian life was obvious: more relaxed, clothing more comfortable, religion less harsh. It was mostly structure of Indian society appeal as less hierarchical, essentially classless, egalitarian. People nomadic so personal property hardly mattered, as limited to what you or horses could carry. What changed this natural way of living for humans was agriculture and industry. And accumulation of personal property led to people doing what they thought best for themselves, rather than for the common good. But, Junger, says we are not happy like this we’re wired to the lifestyle of community tribe. Take the London Blitz during World War II as it began the government feared there would be riots and maybe revolution as people fought one another for space in bomb shelters or for food but infact exactly the reverse happened. People from all different classes mixed in a way they had not before joined together in face of common enemy. Historians credit ‘spirit of the Blitz’ as the cause of the Labour landslide victory in the 1945 election, strong feeling for community led to foundation of NHS and a robust welfare state. Percentage of buildings in Hull destroyed in the Blitz. Junger, an American journalist and former war correspondent, gives many examples of what our modern way of living cost us. In a modern city or suburb you can go through an entire day meeting only strangers. Affluence, urbanisation rise, rates of suicide, depression go up. The World Health Organisation says people in wealthy countries suffer eight times depression rate of those in poorer ones. When we revert to group for support in a community tribe things improve. Those caught up in the bloody conflict in Bosnia say they were happier during challenges. The reason was all pulled together and so felt connected part of something bigger than themselves and spent time embedded with others. U.S. troops in Afghanistan said they never felt alone there, soldiers slept a dozen to a shelter you couldn’t stretch an arm without touching someone. People of all colours, classes, creeds bonded as they had to look out for one another. So idea of interconnectedness is associated with sustainability, in reference to the manner in which environment, society, and economic systems are inextricably linked. Interconnectedness also refers to phenomena not structured hierarchy systems for dominance and control. So the internet and flight make the world closer than ever before so distance is no longer an issue. The interconnectedness of things allows that common language to take full advantage of all societies in a new way. Breaking all of society into a long-term patterns of change in human interconnectedness. Rising level of such interconnectedness has ‘civilising’ effect in encouraging societies to form ‘unions of states’ to respond to shared problems. These outline of global cliques intensify difference more than common good. In tribes survival individual depends upon survival of group. Lack of kind support makes it hard for the returning combat veterans to reintegrate in contemporary fragmented society lifestyles. Above all, people need to feel connected to others. It’s a good starting point for rethinking the way we live our troubled modern lives. Community spirit in U.S. rocketed after 9/11. And the suicide rate dropped dramatically. There were no rampage shootings in public places in schools, colleges for 2 years. Shootings happen in middle-class rural suburban areas never in poor inner-city location, gangs provide tribal sense of belonging. Bonding with larger group often begins at birth in and less developed countries children sleep with in close proximity to parents and extended family group. In Northern European countries and U.S. small children sleep alone so go through a developmental stage of bonding with stuffed animals, ‘comfort’ blankets. In Junger’s book self-determination theory of things necessary is life contentment. People need to feel competent at what they do to feel authentic in life. Above all, they need to feel connected with others. It’s a good starting point for rethinking the way we live our troubled modern lives. In Bible this deep sense of intricate belonging is described as the parts of bespoke wheel joined together to function congruently in unison. Each codepends on others to work together and in isolation is just a piece of tool not accomplishing good by itself. Is a notion built upon word of God that it is better to give than to receive. The joy of relief shared being helpful to each other strengthens group rather than division by haves and the have-nots suffering. Coupled with their pressure is a fear of constantly looking over their shoulder of threats of others taking back what they usurped. Means they never relax or feel secure at peace. The inner peace and inner joy thought to be gained by excessive gains and superabundance is illusive replaced by worries. Jesus told the rich young man to sell all to help the poor yet society is enthusiastic about loving money more than loving precious priceless humans. Fragmented society divides materialism which does not constitute real life and yer an entire lifetime is spent collecting and preserving material possessions left behind. Absolutely nothing is taken into the grave but those things caused stress of a lifetime misled to value them as the status of life. Within a second life passes helplessly without those very material things life is enslaved to produce. All the precious years wasted acquiring, chasing, replacing, storing, maintaining if only spent better to take more care of all humans as Jesus recommended. And the cycle continues getting worse as the trend to accumulate more deprives all others more marshal laws are made to safeguard and enforced at cost of whole community deprived. The irony is those communities that hold onto intergrated values of common good for all are being threatened and endangered by a selfish few destroying their own. They stretch further and further afield with a sight on conquering the whole world even if it means losing their souls. This further leads to disappointment, resentment, conflict over demands for fairness and justice. The good news is there is soon coming a great day of recompense to restore all the years the cankerworm and locusts eaten times of double restoration. God is resetting agenda to take back nations to be given rightful owner LORD Jesus.
Grief is an inevitable part of every human life, regardless of gender. It is also one of the great isolating forces in the lives of men. Male grief is all too often invisible, misunderstood, and unwanted, which leaves many men in the difficult position of having to deal with their grief on their own, if they deal with it at all. Most men myself included routinely reject vital aspects of themselves and their histories because they do not want, or do not know how, to feel and move through the grief that is bound up and waiting inside them. The fear of being shamed by another when most vulnerable of being stripped of one’s masculinity by women as well as by other men is powerful motivation not to feel and express one’s grief. The requirement to go into grief all alone, in secret for lack of understanding, trusted support is another prime or completely understandable reason for avoidance. There is a deep and profound loneliness in knowing one must do such difficult, intense work alone, without witness, and it’s no wonder so many men don’t want to do it. I fight that battle myself all the time. Today I’d like to share excerpts from three posts I’ve seen recently on the subject of male grief that shine some light on this important and severely neglected aspect of the masculine experience. My hope is that, in some very near future, the dialogue about male grief can become far more common and open than it is today, so that men who are grieving can come out of the shadows and men who need to grieve, but haven’t felt the freedom and support necessary to do so, can begin.
Women Learn About Male Grief
The first selection, written by Mark Mercer, is called “What Women Should Know About Male Grief”. Mark, who has been a hospice bereavement director and counselor for 18 years, says, “Men grieve far more than shown or discuss. I would certainly agree. Excerpt is almost never cry in front of other men. If we feel that a woman is “safe,” we may cry with her. But most of our tears are shed when we are alone, perhaps while driving our vehicles. In too many cases, our hot tears become a deep-freeze of anger or rage. Most very angry men are very sad men dealing with grief. You can read Mark’s entire post here. For additional thoughts on how women can create safe emotional space for men who are grieving, see my companion post “What If He Cries?” here.
Teenage Boys – Grieving and Loss
The second post, written by Earl Hipp, is called “Teen Boys – Grief and Loss”. Earl is involved with groups, organizations that focus on men’s issues, development for over thirty years. In his post, Earl talks about learning, as a boy and young man, how he was supposed to deal with grief and loss: The absence of support, or even positive role modeling around dealing with loss, grief, communicated a pretty clear message: You’re on your own, just deal with it. I did … became a kid who was emotionally bound up, pressurized, and lived with thick veneer as shield over all anger and sadness. On the top I wore an “I’m OK” mask. I know that story all too well, as do countless men. Earl’s focus, as always, is on using his own experience as a starting point to help succeeding generations avoid the traps and pitfalls that have caused, and are still causing, so much pain for so many boys and men, and he devotes the majority of the post to that task. You can read Earl’s full post here.
Tom Golden’s The Way Men Heal
The third and final post is a reader review by Andy Thomas of the new book The Way Men Heal. The author of the book, Tom Golden, has been exploring, writing, and speaking on the subject of male grief for many years. In his review, Andy shares a personal experience that illustrates how the taboo against male grief is often enforced, not only for the man who is grieving, but for any other man or boy who might be watching: The day after my Dad died, I was speaking to a friend of his when I broke down, cried briefly I was interrupted by a woman who had known my father but who did not know me. She asked, what would my 4 year old niece think if she saw me crying while handing me a tissue I did not want. Had I been a woman, no doubt she would have put her arm around me, but as a man I was politely told to “man up” my pain was embarrassing her. As someone who has a certain awareness of society’s different expectations for men and women, this experience came as no great surprise to me. For young minds, such experiences are painful however, and quickly teach young boys that “real men don’t cry.” They learn how to keep pain to themselves. Again, this story no doubt resonate powerfully and personally with a lot of men. You can find out more about Tom Golden’s book, The Way Men Heal, here.
Male Grief: Not Alien Concept
I hope these excerpts will encourage you to read the full posts and learn more about the male experience of grief in all its aspects. I recall being quite mystified 30 years ago when I was first introduced to the subject via the work of Robert Bly, John Lee, and Dan Jones. They all emphasized critical importance of a man’s awareness of his own grief, his conscious relationship with it, and his ability to feel it and to allow it to move through him so that his natural energy and innate masculine power would not be blocked and withheld, both from himself and the world. At the time, all that talk of grief mystified me. I didn’t have any idea what it was. I was keenly aware I was angry, frustrated, lonely, sad, depressed … had no sense of any grief. I didn’t really understand what grief was or how it might feel. It seemed completely abstract to me, completely foreign. Perplexed, I wrote poem “grief” found in my book Iron Man Family Outing one day as a way of trying to figure out what this grief that I kept hearing about might be. After many years of hard work, I understand. I’m far from fully comfortable with my own grief, but it’s no longer an alien concept to me. I hope to see the day when male grief is no longer an alien concept to other men, and to the women around them, as well.
Image: “Blue Spaceman” by David Jewell. Used by permission. This post is part of Common Grief, a Healthy Living editorial initiative. Grief is an inevitable part of life, but that doesn’t make navigating it any easier. The deep sorrow that accompanies the death of a loved one, the end of a marriage or even moving far away from home, is real. But while grief is universal, we all grieve differently. So we started Common Grief to help learn from each other. Let’s talk about living with loss. If you have a story you’d like to share, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.