Cats Are Good for your Health

kitties

For those who don’t know, my life mascot and furry soul mate, Hobbes, passed away in early June. He was 17. It was completely heart shattering. I felt closer to him than anyone, having him near me for 17 years, a constant in my life and losing him was very tough.

I allowed myself time to mourn and fall apart for several days and then began to pick myself up the following. In the midst of this was my daughter’s birthday and other activities so to be a good mother I took maybe one to two days to completely grieve (alone) and nothing else.. the next few days I maintained a positive outlook for our children before they arrived back home.

The days following that we began to speak about whether we would want another pet and if it would be a dog or a cat.. David was eventually open that he would want another cat because his bond with Hobbes turned him into a full blown cat person. We waited until we could have a family meeting about the passing of Hobbes and if we would want another pet. We looked online the next whole night for babies to adopt and found a little Manx which looked like a relative of Hobbes. We adopted the next weekend and David named him Calvin in honor of his big brother. It took him maybe one eve before he was completely obsessed with David and I. He is crazy, kittenish and hyper half the time while snuggly, cuddly and a nap lover the other half. He is officially our new baby boy.

So what is it about cats that steal our hearts and soothe our souls? We all know petting our cats helps us relax and feel comforted like no one else, unconditional love and admiration for every pat, but did you know they can also detect your feelings and even medical emergencies such as seizures? That they lower blood pressure and instill a feeling of safety and security?

I’ve read about quite a few cats detecting seizures on the web these days and I know my own cat always knew when I was upset or sad as he would meow to me and lay on me for hours if needed. I read up about this and scientists don’t really understand much about it other than the cats are able to detect biochemical scents. Many cats even alert family if an owner is beginning to have a seizure. Did you know cat purrs encourage the mending of broken bones? Cats have also been known to wake and alert families of house fires while they sleep. Yes, cats can save lives AND improve your health and happiness. In fact, read 8 Benefits of Being a Cat Owner by Mental Floss.

Cat-Purr-Therapeutic-Infographic

Maintaining a Healthy Brain While Working Online

I’ve recently had the pleasure of chatting with the media-proclaimed “Poker Barbie” Lacey Jones about playing poker on and offline and actually making a living doing it. It seems rather strange to me to rely on a chance game to supply your income but I suppose many people feel the same about freelance design work and professional blogging (sometimes you have tons of jobs and advertising opportunities, sometimes just a few) and so, having had several friends that seem to successfully live this way, I had to learn more about how they are able to make the most of the unconventional (Miseducated) lifestyle and career they chose.

One topic we kept coming back to in our discussion is how to stay healthy while spending the majority of our time sitting down doing mostly brain work and very little body work. In being a blogger and artist I can definitely relate to my body getting the short end of the deal and began to realize that our work actually holds many more similarities than I had previously thought.

So what exactly is needed to run both a healthy brain and a healthy body while sitting for long periods of time? I thought you’d never ask! Let’s take a look at some brain foods, unhealthy foods and health tips used by professional poker players around the globe and use this information to our own benefit whether we be playing poker for money or blogging for fun.

“Add these ‘superfoods’ to your daily diet, and you will increase your odds of maintaining a healthy brain for the rest of your life.” ~ WebMD

Brain Foods

Blueberries
Wild Salmon
Nuts and Seeds
Avacados
Whole Grains
Beans
Pomegranates
Tea
Dark Chocolate // Cacao

“Whether you play live or online, poker guarantees one thing; you spend plenty of time sitting in a chair. In order to be profitable in the long run it’s crucial to revitalize the body and mind with exercise and healthy food.” ~ 9 Essential Health Tips for the Online Poker Grinder

Health Tips

Ergonomic and Comfortable Chair – Make sure your chair is supportive to your back, your monitor is at a comfortable height and your wrists are relaxed.
Take Breaks – Take 2-5 minute breaks every 30-60 minutes to maintain high brain performance and productivity and don’t forget to take a 30 minute lunch in the middle of your work day.
Rest Your Eyes – Remember to look away from the monitor throughout your workday and focus on something farther away for a short time.
Use Routine Exercises and Good Posture – Don’t simply melt into your chair and write away, be sure to keep moving throughout your work day even in the smallest of ways. Roll and stretch your wrists, contract and hold your abdominal and gluteus muscles, exercise your calves by pushing up onto the balls of your feet. Utilize a routine which allows you to be habitual in your seated exercise regimen.

“By reducing or eliminating the foods that should be avoided you will optimize your brain power today and reduce your risk of developing brain related diseases in the future.” ~ LIVESTRONG

Foods to Avoid

Processed Carbohydrates
Trans Fat and Fried Foods
Meat
Fatty Dairy
Sugary Sweets