From the desk of Zedie.

14 Inspirational Books That Can Change Your Life

I’ve spent my whole career in the book business, and I wouldn’t want it any other way. So many people have a book inside them (at least one) and as a publicist, I help make authors’ dreams come true.

I love books, and I’m passionate about how books can change our lives … sometimes with just one sentence or with an idea, an insight, an adventure or a story. Here are 14 books that have changed my life in positive ways. It is very much a partial list, but I hope it inspires you.


1.Beloved by Toni Morrison

“Something that is loved is never lost.”

I read this novel after my father died, and this quote stayed with me and helped me heal. I hope this gem can comfort you too.

2. Life of Pi by Yann Martel

“Those we meet can change us, sometimes so profoundly that we are not the same afterward.”

This book is a magical journey, and changed the way I see the world. Sometimes people can change us, sometimes a book can.

3. Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling

“It is our choices, Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” Albus Dumbledore.
I started reading Harry Potter books to my girls when they were in kindergarten. I’d read ahead the night before so I could edit the content to make it more appropriate for their age. It got me hooked, and started a truly bonding relationship with my girls. Harry Potter series always binds us together. We have private jokes related to the series, and a lifetime of memories.

4. The Alchemist by Paul Coelho

“It’s the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting.”

I love this book and the idea of seeking meaning in your own life. It taught me the difference between seeking and finding, and how we should enjoy the pursuit of our dreams. Now my daughter is reading the book and is loving it as well.

5. Wonder by RJ Palacio

“Funny how sometimes you worry a lot about something and it turns out to be nothing.”

This author is one of my soul sisters, and seeing her fulfill her dreams and talents inspires me every day. She is my hero, because she made no excuses. While writing Wonder, she was a busy mom and wife, had a demanding full-time career, an elderly parent who needed her support and attention and yet she still found time to write this beautiful novel. She woke up in the middle of the night to write. Inspiring.

6. The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

“The most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or touched, they are felt with the heart.”

I read this book in high school and it taught me that what is valuable in life is invisible like love. And that a certain level of magical thinking is necessary for living a creative life.


7. The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron

“Pray to catch the bus; then run as fast as you can.”

This book opened me up to the flow of creativity and hard work.

8. The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell

“It’s a shame to waste [the uniqueness that is you], by doing what someone else has done.”

This book started me on my spiritual path. I have lived my life by his philosophy of “follow your bliss” and have encouraged my daughters to live that way too.

9. Be Here Now by Ram Dass

“The spiritual journey is individual, highly personal. It can’t be organized or regulated. It isn’t true that everyone should follow one path. Listen to your own truth.”

I love the idea of acceptance of all. It’s collective, all-encompassing, nonjudgmental ideas are beautiful. Besides it is designed in such a creative and interactive way.

10. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

“When you complain, you make yourself into a victim. When you speak out, you are in your power. So change the situation by taking action or by speaking out if necessary or possible; leave the situation or accept it. All else is madness.”

This book — and this quote in particular — truly changed my thinking. When you think about it, complaining is just madness. Leave the situation or accept it, all else is madness.

11. The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown

“What makes you vulnerable, makes you beautiful.”

Brene Brown encouraged me to open myself in a way I had never done before and it is liberating. It’s a beautiful gift when a book can encourage you to be just who you are — flaws and all.

Business Books

12. Consider: Harnessing the Power of Reflective Thinking In Your Organization by Daniel Patrick Forrester

“Only by carving out think time and reflection can we actually understand, in an entirely different context, the actions we take.”

This book changed the way I approach work. I understood that being busy is not the same as being productive or profitable. In business and in life, the best decisions happen when we take the necessary time to step outside of our day-to-day routines and reflect on our decisions.

13. Business Secrets of the Trappist Monks: One CEO’s Quest for Meaning and Authenticity by August Turak

“A reputation for honesty and integrity is one of those “intangible assets” that pays off in ways we can never fully anticipate.”

I have spent 19 years building my business and I hope a reputation for integrity. This book validated my investment. Honesty is like a first impression, you don’t get a do over. The book is full of practical tips and inspiration to serve your customers/clients in the best way possible while also being more successful.

Career Advice

14. Oh, The Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go …”

I have read this book many times. Once it gave me the courage to quit a great job to start my own company to do online book publicity before I fully understood what that was. Don’t we all need a reminder that “You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.”

Just one book can change your life. I hope you find your inspiration from my list. I’d love to know your favorite books.

6 People Who Will Do Amazing Things for Your Career .

We all know how important networking is for our careers. Building and maintaining strong relationships is critical to your professional success, whether you’re measuring salary growth, promotions, or job satisfaction over time. But before you rattle off how many “friends” you have on your favorite social media site du jour, know that not all contact lists are alike.

You want to assemble a diverse group of talent, dubbed “social capital” by the researchers who study this sort of thing, in order for your network of friends to really have an impact on your success. As with friendships, it’s the quality not the quantity that counts. So, who’s essential to your contact list? Here are the six most important kinds of people you need to know.

1. The Finance Guru

Befriend those who are wiser financially than you. “It’s well established that what our friends say and do affects what we say and do—and even what we think,” saysLynda Wallace certified positive psychology coach and author of A Short Course in Happiness. Having a financially savvy friend can have a positive impact on our own finances. “If our friends tend to throw their money away, it makes it a little more tempting for us to do the same. But a friend who is clear about her financial goals and consistently pursues them can inspire us pay more attention to our own financial well-being.”

2. The Connector

Think you can leave behind The Person Who Knows Everyone now that you’re all grown-up? Think again. “I would say that we don’t need a connector, but many,” says Sharon Good, life coach and owner of Good Life Coaching. It’s best to know a few people who thrive on socializing and making introductions in your network.

“These days, it’s all about relationships. Think about LinkedIn: For each connection you have, you also connect to their connections, and their connections’ connections, making it much easier than doing it one at a time,” she explains. Plus, when you need information or are looking for a new job, Connectors keep those tangential connections “warm” so you don’t have to start out cold when you want to reach out to someone a connector knows.

3. The Mentor

Take time to have coffee or an email exchange now and then with a mentor, the person who you can say has inspired your career direction from the beginning, saysChristine Hassler, life coach and counselor and author of The 20 Something Manifesto. “It’s important to choose a mentor who is living a life you respect and want to model—not just someone who has a job or career path you would want,” she advises. “A good mentor will offer a balance between being a cheerleader and a coach: enthusiastically acknowledging us for our accomplishments while also calling us forward and not allowing us to settle.”

Sounds like a tall order for just one person? Hassler recommends not stopping at one guru in your contact list. “Having several mentors is ideal!”

4. The Innovator

Maybe this person is that entrepreneur in your contact list or the name that keeps you up-to-date in your industry. Bottom line: You want to maintain that relationship with the person who is always on the cutting-edge of your industry’s innovations. “An innovator in your circle of friends will remind you to not grow stagnant—just watching them tackle new challenges can inspire you to try new things yourself,” says Julie Melillo, certified business and life coach. “Entrepreneurs are also great at solving problems creatively, which can be a great help to you.”

5. The Leader

For those tough career questions, look no further than your former bosses or other leaders in your industry who you’ve met and exchanged business cards with at professional events. Mind you, they’re not the same as the warm, fuzzy mentors in your address book who you may have a fuller, more personal relationship with. Leaders are the folks who you look up to purely from a professional point of view.

“Success breeds success. Being around successful people rubs off. All goals are reached in the mind first. So when we see someone we admire obtain success, we believe we can obtain it, too,” says certified career coach Deborah Brown-Volkman, owner of Surpass Your Dreams and author of Coach Yourself to a New Career. Save these contacts for those rare, more serious work issues, but keep them in your contact list just the same.

6. Even the Frenemy

Yes, you read that right. Don’t snub the colleague who shares a similar work trajectory with you just because you sometimes feel like you’re in competition. This is a good dynamic, according to Brown-Volkman. “Frenemies are good because they push us to be our best. Competition forces us to rise to the occasion and go after what we want in our career,” she says. When we look at others, and what they have, it motivates us to go after what we want. “It also gives us confidence that we can reach our career goals because people we know have already done it,” adds Brown-Volkman. It’s the 21st-century spin on a time-honored adage: Keep your friends close and your (fre)enemies closer.

Tough foam from tiny sheets

Tough, ultralight foam of atom-thick sheets can be made to any size and shape through a chemical process invented at Rice University.

In microscopic images, the foam dubbed “GO-0.5BN” looks like a nanoscale building, with floors and walls that reinforce each other. The structure consists of a pair of two-dimensional materials: floors and walls of that self-assemble with the assistance of hexagonal boron nitride platelets.

The researchers say the foam could find use in structural components, as supercapacitor and battery electrodes and for gas absorption, among other applications.

The research by an international collaboration led by the Rice lab of materials scientist Pulickel Ajayan is detailed today in the online journal Nature Communications.

Graphene oxide (GO) is a variant of graphene, the hexagonal lattice of carbon atoms known for its superior strength and conductivity. It can be produced in bulk by chemically exfoliating oxidized graphite. Hexagonal boron nitride (h-BN) looks like GO, with the same “chicken wire” array of atoms. An insulator known as “white graphene,” h-BN has an ability to form seamless interfaces with graphene that has led to the creation of interesting hybrid materials at Rice and elsewhere.

Soumya Vinod, the Rice graduate student who co-led the project, said she and her colleagues expected adding h-BN to graphene oxide would toughen the resulting foam, but “the ordered, layered structure was not entirely expected.”

“Once we observed the structure, we knew it was very different from the other nanoengineered foams reported and could lead to very interesting properties,” she said.

Those properties include the ability to handle a great deal of strain and still bounce back to its native form. This is remarkable, Vinod said, for a material so light that a stray breath in the lab would send the small samples flying.

Both components of the new material start as cheap, plentiful powders. Atom-thick layers of graphene oxide and h-BN are chemically exfoliated from the powders, mixed in the proper proportion with a few chemical catalysts and freeze-dried. The resulting foam takes the shape of the container and is 400 times less dense than graphite.

For testing, Vinod and her colleagues made foams of pure graphene oxide and foams with h-BN at 25 and 50 percent by weight. The 50 percent h-BN version was found to be the most mechanically stable, though she expects to optimize the mix—and increase the size—with further experimentation. “We found that more concentration of h-BN leads to low structural integrity, but we’ve yet to optimize the right amount,” she said.

A close-up look at the revealed the floors as self-assembled sheets of overlapping GO flakes. Cross-linking platelets of h-BN were uniformly distributed throughout the material and held the sheets together.

Samples the size of a pencil’s eraser were compressed with one or two pennies to see how well they would bounce back.

The h-BN platelets connect to oxide and absorb stress from compression and stretching, preventing the GO floors from crumbling and significantly enhancing the material’s thermal stability, Vinod said. The platelets also prevented the propagation of cracks that destroyed samples with less or no h-BN.

Shotgun victim who underwent face transplant ever featured in GQ

  • Richard Lee Norris, 39, spent over 10 years hiding behind a mask and only shopping at night after sustaining horrific injuries in 1997
  • Had jawbones, teeth, tongue, muscles and nerves replaced during 36-hour operation at University of Maryland involving 150 doctors and nurses in 2012
  • He got new face from donor whose organs saved five other lives that day
  • Now on the cover on the GQ saying he is proud and willing to be studied for the rest of his life

In the world of medical journals, Richard Norris is a rock star.

Horribly disfigured after a shotgun accident blew off half his face, the 39-year-old underwent one of the most complex face transplants in history, receiving teeth, a jaw and even a tongue from a donor.

The 36-hour hour operation was extremely controversial – it was elective surgery, and Norris only had a 50 percent chance of survival – but the result was not only a new life for him, but a groundbreaking new study for doctors learning to treat soldiers and other victims of severe facial injuries.

‘A drop of hope can create an ocean, but a bucket of faith can create an entire world,’ Norris tells GQ, which he features in next month.

Scroll down for video

Model star: Richard Norris, 39, appears in GQ this month, talking about the life-changing face transplant he received in 2012 and how it has become a landmark study around the world

Model star: Richard Norris, 39, appears in GQ this month, talking about the life-changing face transplant he received in 2012 and how it has become a landmark study around the world

Norris said he is proud to be a ‘lab rat’ and happy to spend the rest of his life in and out of hospitals being evaluated by surgeons.

The doctor that performed the operation at the University of Maryland Medical Center, Dr Eduardo Rodriguez, said when Norris opted to undergo the intense procedure, he was agreeing to take on an enormous responsibility.

‘He never really thought about himself in all of this,’ Rodriguez told the magazine.

‘He’s always thought about helping the wounded warriors and the other people, and providing hope. He’s a remarkable man.’

Norris was 22 when his face ‘exploded’.

He had arrived home drunk and was arguing with his mother when he took a shotgun from his gun cabinet and told his mom he was going to shoot himself.

He racked a shell into the chamber and the gun went off.

Grateful: Richard Norris sits in the office of Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez in 2013, who led the surgical team that performed the face transplant

Grateful: Richard Norris sits in the office of Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez in 2013, who led the surgical team that performed the face transplant

Care: Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez inspects Norris' skin. In the 15 years since a shotgun blew half of Norris' face off, he faced cruelty from strangers, fought addiction and contemplated suicide

Care: Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez inspects Norris’ skin. In the 15 years since a shotgun blew half of Norris’ face off, he faced cruelty from strangers, fought addiction and contemplated suicide

There was human flesh, bone and teeth on all four walls of Norris’ bedroom and all over his mother.

Each day became a living nightmare for Norris as he faced cruelty from strangers whenever he ventured outdoors, fought addiction and contemplated suicide.

The accident left Norris with no teeth, no nose and only part of his tongue. He was still able to taste but could not smell. When he went out in public, usually at night, he hid behind a hat and mask.

  • Norris had dozens of surgeries to repair his face, but eventually reached the limits of what conventional surgery could do for him, said Dr. Rodriguez.

Some parts of the anatomy, such as eyelids and lips, are just too complex to recreate, he noted.

‘You can create a semblance of something, but I can guarantee you it’s not normal by any means.’

Richard Norris
Richard Norris

Disfigured: When he shot himself in the face in 1997 he lost his nose, lips and most movement in his mouth

Richard Norris
Richard Norris

Life saving: He has had multiple life-saving, reconstructive surgeries but none as successful as this

Just weeks after Norris was told by another doctor that there was little else that could be done for him, Rodriguez presented him with another option: a transplant.

The doctor, who is head of plastic surgery at the University of Maryland Medical Center’s R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center, had been following advancements in the face transplant field for years.

An Office of Naval Research grant for the purpose of helping wounded warriors made it possible for him and his team to attempt their first face transplant, an operation that previously had been performed by only two other centers in the United States.

The world’s first partial face transplant was performed in France in 2005 on a woman who was mauled by her dog. Of the 27 other transplants that have followed, four recipients have died, and the survivors face a lifetime of immunosuppressant drugs, which can take a toll on their health.

The face isn’t an organ like a liver or a heart, which are regularly transplanted.

The face is more like a hand or foot, and Norris’ body will always regard his new face as a foreign object, causing his immune system to constantly attack it.

He will take a cocktail of anti-rejection drugs for the rest of his life, which lower Norris’ immune system.

This leaves him vulnerable to many health problems.

He is also not allowed to drink, smoke, get sunburned or risk injury, all of which will only worsen the rejection.

A serious rejection results in death.

Norris has had two since the 2012 operation, and spent weeks in hospital on intravenous medication.

The rejection was the major danger of performing the operation in the first place.

Once Rodriguez began, there was no turning back, and if the transplant didn’t take to Norris, there would have been nothing left of his face and he would have died.

Finally me: For the first time in 15 years, Richard recognizes himself when he looks in the mirror

Finally me: For the first time in 15 years, Richard recognizes himself when he looks in the mirror

Good friends: Norris, right, shows friend Andrew Kahle, left, how to load line into a fly fishing rod at Norris' home in Hillsville, Virginia
Good friends: Norris, right, shows friend Andrew Kahle, left, how to load line into a fly fishing rod at Norris' home in Hillsville, Virginia

‘Humbled’: Norris said he is humbled by the gift he received from the family of 21-year-old donor Joshua Aversano, who died after being struck by a minivan while crossing the street

Unlike most organ transplant recipients, who need their surgeries to live, face transplant patients are risking death to eliminate a non-life-threatening condition, noted Dr. Mark Ehrenreich, the psychiatric consultant to Norris’ transplant team.

Rodriguez says patients are well aware of the situation.

‘If you talk to these patients, they will tell you it is worth the risk,’ he said.

The team carefully lays out all of the dangers for patients: Norris’ mother, Sandra, remembers Rodriguez saying there was a 50-50 chance her son would survive the surgery.

‘We looked at Richard and we told him we loved him the way he was and it didn’t matter to us, but it was his life,’ she said. ‘That was what he wanted to do and we supported him.’

Norris said he is humbled by the gift he received from the family of 21-year-old Joshua Aversano, who died after being struck by a minivan while crossing the street.

Message: He hopes his story sends a message of hope to people in similar situations and encourages empathy in others

Message: He hopes his story sends a message of hope to people in similar situations and encourages empathy in others

Norris said he speaks to the Maryland family regularly and keeps them updated on his life and health.

Norris’ 36-hour transplant operation is still considered the most extensive ever conducted because it included transplantation of the teeth, upper and lower jaw, a portion of the tongue and all of the tissue from the scalp to the base of the neck, Rodriguez said.

‘The real main limitation … is that patients are dependent on medication for life,’ he said. The immunosuppressant medications carry risks for the patients, who don’t know how long the transplant will last. Rodriguez said if all goes well, a transplanted face could last 20 to 30 years.

For Norris, who makes daily visual checks, the risk of rejection is never far from his mind.

‘Every day I wake up with that fear: Is this the day? The day I’m going to go into a state of rejection that is going to be so bad that the doctors can’t change it?’

Hero: Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez, speaks with Norris at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore

Hero: Dr. Eduardo Rodriguez, speaks with Norris at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore

New life: Norris completes homework for an online art history college course that he has enrolled in since the operation

New life: Norris completes homework for an online art history college course that he has enrolled in since the operation

Richard Norris
Richard Norris

When Norris saw his new face in a mirror for the first time, he wrote: ‘The only thing I could do was hug Dr. Rodriguez’

But he said he can’t let himself worry about it too much, and he knows that he’s in good hands.

Norris had to learn how to eat and talk again and adjust each time his face gains more feeling. He continues with therapy, travels to Baltimore from his home in Hillsville, Va., regularly to see doctors, and still takes pain and immunosuppressant medications. He says his faith in God has carried him through it all; that he has maintained a sense of humor and remained the same person inside.

And he agrees with doctors, who dismiss a commonly held belief that face transplant patients are likely to experience an identity crisis.

The bigger issue for Norris is being able to appear in public again. Facial disfigurement tends not to engender sympathy, leaving patients feeling shunned, Ehrenreich noted.

‘Unfortunately, with severe facial disfigurement, people recoil and make comments they would never make to someone in a wheelchair,’ he said.

‘When I look in the mirror, I see Richard Norris.

‘When I was disfigured, just walking the sidewalk, I was surprised that more people didn’t walk into telephone poles or break their necks to stare at me.

‘Now … there’s no one paying attention. Unless they know me personally, they don’t know I am a face transplant patient. That right there is the goal we had.’

Watch video here:


Doctors in Maryland perform most extensive face transplant to…

Rebuilding process: Mr Norris's skull after his accident (left) and as surgeons began to piece it back together (right)
Rebuilding process: Mr Norris's skull after his accident (left) and as surgeons began to piece it back together (right)

Rebuilding process: Mr Norris’s skull after his accident (left) and as surgeons began to piece it back together (right)

Remarkable: After a 36-hour operation, doctors had reconstructed the lower half of Mr Norris's face

Remarkable: After a 36-hour operation, doctors had reconstructed the lower half of Mr Norris’s face

Rodriguez said that one of the most common questions he is asked is: ‘How is Richard dealing with having a new face?’

Dr Rodriguez said: ‘We always think that there is going to be a facial identity crisis. That’s the worry of people with normal faces. We think how we’d feel if this happened to us.

‘But for people with disfigurements — these people have lived lives concealed from society. That’s a very different and difficult recovery.’

Before the transplant, Norris rarely left his home. In addition to wearing a surgical mask and baseball cap on his infrequent trips out in public, he did his shopping at night so he wouldn’t have to face the stares of as many people.

‘I am now able to walk past people and no one even gives me a second look,’ he wrote.

After years of going out of his way to avoid people, Norris is surprisingly comfortable socializing now, Rodriguez said.

While Norris’s results are ‘extraordinary,’ Rodriguez said the full recovery will take more time.

There’s the challenge of teaching Norris, who has not eaten or spoken properly for 15 years, to use his fully functional face.

The teeth plus the tongue is a lot to get used to when someone has gone so long without them, Rodriguez said. Additionally, minor surgery is planned for the soft tissue of his face, such as the eyelids where there is extra skin.

But more than anything else, there is a looming question. Even with immuno-suppressing drugs, doctors say they have no idea how long the transplant will last. There is an expectation that they will have to repair or replace the transplant eventually.

Dr Rodriguez looks with hope to earlier face transplants. The world’s first full face transplant took place in Spain in 2010 and is aging well two years later. The first partial transplant was done in France in 2005, and Rodriguez said its longevity is promising.

‘I’d like to hit that 10-year mark with Richard,’ he said. ‘Of course, we can’t promise anything, but 10 years would be great.’

In the meantime, Norris said he is excited to fish, golf and spend time with his family and friends.

‘My friends have moved on with their lives, starting families and careers,’ he said. ‘I can now start working on the life given back to me.’

More mysterious craters found in Russia’s remote Siberia region

​This frame grab made Wednesday, July 16, 2014, shows a crater, discovered recently in the Yamal Peninsula, in Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug, Russia.

 Two more craters of unknown origin have been spotted in Russia’s Siberia region, weeks after a similar-looking hole was found in the isolated northernmost area, a local paper reported.

The Siberian Times, an English-language newspaper, published pictures of two new giant holes discovered by reindeer herders, one located in the Yamal and the other in the Taymyr peninsula, both above the Arctic circle.

The paper said that theories of their origin range from meteorites or stray missiles to aliens or an underground gas explosion. The report could not be confirmed independently.


Russian state TV reported earlier this month that a giant hole had appeared in the gas-rich Yamal peninsula where temperatures plummet below -50 degrees Celsius (-58 degrees Fahrenheit) and the sun barely rises in winter.

A Russian scientific expedition arrived at the site to inspect the first crater, nicknamed the “Yamal black hole”, earlier this month, according to a recent report by state-run website.

Yamal, inhabited by indigenous reindeer herders, is one of Russia’s richest regions in natural gas.

A meteorite, which weighed about 10 metric tonnes, hit central Russia last year, injuring more than 1,000 people.

Experts drew comparisons with an incident in 1908, when a meteorite is thought to have devastated an area of more than 2,000 sq km (772 square miles) in Siberia, breaking windows as far as 200 kilometers (125 miles) from the point of impact.

(This version of the story corrects conversion in paragraph 8 of 2,000 sq km to 772 square miles (not 1,250 miles))

Is Broken Heart Syndrome Real?

When Your Heart Breaks … (Literally).

You can die of a broken heart — it’s scientific fact — and my heart has been breaking since that very first day we met. I can feel it now, aching deep behind my rib cage the way it does every time we’re together, beating a desperate rhythm: Love me. Love me. Love me.” ? Abby McDonald, Getting Over Garrett Delaney

When you think of a broken heart, you may picture a cartoon drawing with a jagged line through it. But a real-life broken heart can actually lead to cardiac consequences. There are established ties between depression, mental health and heart disease. Read on for more information about how an extremely stressful event can have an impact on your heart.

Broken Heart Outline in Sand

Breakdown of a Broken Heart
Broken heart syndrome, also called stress-induced cardiomyopathy or takotsubo cardiomyopathy, can strike even if you’re healthy. (Tako tsubo, by the way, are octopus traps that resemble the pot-like shape of the stricken heart.)

Women are more likely than men to experience the sudden, intense chest pain — the reaction to a surge of stress hormones — that can be caused by an emotionally stressful event. It could be the death of a loved one or even a divorce, breakup or physical separation, betrayal or romantic rejection. It could even happen after a good shock (like winning the lottery.)

Broken heart syndrome may be misdiagnosed as a heart attack because the symptoms and test results are similar. In fact, tests show dramatic changes in rhythm and blood substances that are typical of a heart attack. But unlike a heart attack, there’s no evidence of blocked heart arteries in broken heart syndrome.

In broken heart syndrome, a part of your heart temporarily enlarges and doesn’t pump well, while the rest of your heart functions normally or with even more forceful contractions. Researchers are just starting to learn the causes, and how to diagnose and treat it.

The bad news: Broken heart syndrome can lead to severe, short-term heart muscle failure.

The good news: Broken heart syndrome is usually treatable. Most people who experience it make a full recovery within weeks, and they’re at low risk for it happening again (although in rare cases in can be fatal).

What To Look For: Signs and Symptoms
The most common signs and symptoms of broken heart syndrome are angina (chest pain) and shortness of breath. You can experience these things even if you have no history of heart disease.

Arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats) or cardiogenic shock also may occur with broken heart syndrome. Cardiogenic shock is a condition in which a suddenly weakened heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs, and it can be fatal if it isn’t treated right away. (When people die from heart attacks, cardiogenic shock is the most common cause of death.)

Heart attack and broken heart syndrome: What’s the difference?

Some signs and symptoms of broken heart syndrome differ from those of heart attack. In broken heart syndrome, symptoms occur suddenly after extreme emotional or physical stress. Here are some other differences:

  • EKG (a test that records the heart’s electric activity) results don’t look the same as the EKG results for a person having a heart attack.
  • Blood tests show no signs of heart damage.
  • Tests show no signs of blockages in the coronary arteries.
  • Tests show ballooning and unusual movement of the lower left heart chamber (left ventricle).
  • Recovery time is quick, usually within days or weeks (compared with the recovery time of a month or more for a heart attack).

Learn More About Broken Heart Syndrome
If your doctor thinks you have broken heart syndrome, you may need coronary angiography, a test that uses dye and special X-rays to show the insides of your coronary arteries. Other diagnostic tests are blood tests, EKG,echocardiography (a painless test that uses sound waves to create moving pictures of your heart) and cardiacMRI.

To keep tabs on your heart health, your doctor may recommend an echo about a month after you’re diagnosed with the syndrome. Talk with your doctor about how often you should schedule follow-up visits.

7 Aloe Vera Uses You Might Not Know .

Crack open the plant’s thick leaves to reveal a jelly filled with vitamins and anti-inflammatory properties that can do everything from treat insect bites to condition your hair.

Read more:

From the desk of Zedie.

10 Surprising Facts About Rejection .

We know that rejection really hurts, but they can also inflict damage to our psychological well-being that goes well beyond mere emotional pain. Here are 10 lesser known facts that describe the various effects rejection has on our emotions, thinking, and behavior. Let’s begin by examining why rejection hurts as much as it does:1. Rejection piggybacks on physical pain pathways in thebrain. fMRI studies show that the same areas of the brain become activated when we experience rejection as when we experience physical pain. This is why rejection hurts so much (neurologically speaking). In fact our brains respond so similarly to rejection and physical pain that…

2. Tylenol reduces the emotional pain rejection elicits. In a study testing the hypothesis that rejection mimics physical pain, researchers gave some participants acetaminophen (Tylenol) before asking them to recall a painful rejection experience. The people who received Tylenol reported significantly less emotional pain than subjects who took a sugar pill. Psychologists assume that the reason for the strong link between rejection and physical pain is that…

3. Rejection served a vital function in our evolutionary past. In our hunter/gatherer past, being ostracized from our tribes was akin to a death sentence, as we were unlikely to survive for long alone. Evolutionary psychologists assume the brain developed an early warning system to alert us when we were at risk for ostracism. Because it was so important to get our attention, those who experienced rejection as more painful (i.e., because rejection mimicked physical pain in their brain) gained an evolutionary advantage—they were more likely to correct their behavior and consequently, more likely to remain in the tribe. Which probably also explains why…

4. We can relive and re-experience social pain more vividly than we can physical pain. Try recalling an experience in which you felt significant physical pain and your brain pathways will respond, “Meh.” In other words, that memory alone won’t elicit physical pain. But try reliving a painful rejection (actually, don’t—just take my word for it), and you will be flooded with many of the same feelings you had at the time (and your brain will respond much as it did at the time, too). Our brain prioritizes rejection experiences because we are social animals who live in “tribes.” This leads to an aspect about rejection we often overlook…

5. Rejection destabilizes our “Need to Belong.” We all have a fundamental need to belong to a group. When we get rejected, this need becomes destabilized and the disconnection we feel adds to our emotional pain. Reconnecting with those who love us, or reaching out to members of groups to which we feel strong affinity and who value and accept us, has been found to soothe emotional pain after a rejection. Feeling alone and disconnected after a rejection, however, has an often overlooked impact on our behavior…

6. Rejection creates surges of anger and aggression. In 2001, the Surgeon General of the U.S. issued a report stating that rejection was a greater risk for adolescent violence than drugs, poverty, or gang membership. Countless studies have demonstrated that even mild rejections lead people to take out their aggression on innocent bystanders. School shootings, violence against women, and fired workers going “postal” are other examples of the strong link between rejection and aggression. However, much of that aggression elicited by rejection is also turned inward…

7. Rejections send us on a mission to seek and destroy our self-esteem. We often respond to romantic rejections by finding fault in ourselves, bemoaning all our inadequacies, kicking ourselves when we’re already down, and smacking our self-esteem into a pulp. Most romantic rejections are a matter of poor fit and a lack of chemistry, incompatible lifestyles, wanting different things at different times, or other such issues of mutual dynamics. Blaming ourselves and attacking our self-worth only deepens the emotional pain we feel and makes it harder for us to recover emotionally. But before you rush to blame yourself for…blaming yourself, keep in mind the fact that…

8. Rejection temporarily lowers our IQ. Being asked to recall a recent rejection experience and relive the experience was enough to cause people to score significantly lower on subsequent IQ tests, tests of short-term memory, and tests of decision making. Indeed, when we are reeling from a painful rejection, thinking clearly is just not that easy. This explains why…

9. Rejection does not respond to reason. Participants were put through an experiment in which they were rejected by strangers. The experiment was rigged—the “strangers” were confederates of the researchers. Surprisingly, though, even being told that the “strangers” who had “rejected” them did not actually reject them did little to ease the emotional pain participants felt. Even being told that the strangers belonged to a group they despised such as the KKK did little to soothe people’s hurt feelings. Still, the news is not all bad, because…

10. There are ways to treat the psychological wounds rejection inflicts. It is possible to treat the emotional pain rejection elicits and to prevent the psychological, emotional, cognitive, and relationship fallouts that occur in its aftermath. To do so effectively we must address each of our psychological wounds (i.e., soothe our emotional pain, reduce our anger and aggression, protect our self-esteem, and stabilize our need to belong).


Double mastectomies offer almost no survival benefit for breast cancer patients, 20-year study proves

Western medicine is so aggressive and cut-throat that even the idea of prevention has been skewed to the point of chopping off and cutting out body parts for “preventing” cancer that isn’t even there.

Fear and self-mutilation are not the answer. Today in American mainstream medicine, women are given the option to remove healthy breasts, ovaries and other female parts so cancer won’t get a hold of them in the future. This is like preventing house fires by first burning out important internal structures that might catch fire one day.


Virtually no survival benefit for women who underwent “preventive” mastectomies

A new 20-year study from the University Of Minnesota School Of Medicine proves that this idea of “prevention” is ineffective at keeping cancer away. The idea is barbaric, preys on fear, is not strategic at real prevention at the cellular level and feeds a medical industry corrupt to its core. In fact, the study spanning found that the survival benefit for women who had their healthy breasts removed compared to those who kept their breasts was less than 1 percent in all cases studied. The surgeries possess virtually no benefit, while costing patients and insurance companies wads of more money. The medical industry is focusing in the wrong direction here, taking women down the wrong road of prevention.

Define: prevention

Could you imagine how great the survival benefit would be if women were encouraged to make different lifestyle decisions for true prevention? Doctors could help educate women on hormone-disrupting chemicals, helping them avoid toxins like bisphenol A, found in many plastics and can linings. Doctors could be showing women how to alkalize and oxygenate their cells with the correct whole foods. Doctors could empower women with knowledge and know-how, like how to prepare green tea or high quality turmeric, two anti-cancerous powerhouse foods. The philosophy and the focus of Western medicine must change course.

The study’s lead researcher, Dr. Todd Tuttle, said, “We found fairly convincing evidence that there really is no meaningful long-term survival benefit for the vast majority of women with breast cancer by having their opposite breast removed.”

“Most patients have very minimal increases in life expectancy, one to seven months,” he said, pointing out that the vague difference was seen in younger women but was spread over two or more decades.

Mastectomies motivated by fear, not by practical, hopeful prevention at the cellular level

The more than 20 years of research encompassed 100,000 women with stage I or stage II breast cancers. What’s interesting about the breast cancer cases in this study is that none of the women even had the so called breast cancer genes, BRCA-1 and BRCA-2, before they got the cancer.

From years of practicing medicine, lead researcher Dr. Tuttle sees how many women are acting out of fear when they ask for “preventive” mastectomies. Dr. Tuttle often tells those who choose the procedure, “It’s really a false sense of security.” He says fear is the underlying factor and points to one study where breast cancer patients age 40 and under chose to have their other healthy breast removed because of fear. 94 percent said they wanted to boost their survival, but only 18 percent of them actually believed that the procedure would work for them.

Instead of allowing fear to rule the minds of women, hopeful prevention strategies should be encouraged.

Why aren’t doctors and hospitals growing elaborate greenhouses full of green leafy vegetables?

What if doctors taught green juicing right at the office and taught women how to create an internal cellular environment that repels cancer and boosts ATP energy production?

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