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Will Cutting the Health Mandate Pay for Tax Cuts? Not Necessarily

Even the budget office is revising its estimates and has predicted the new numbers would be smaller.

In a survey this fall, the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation found that just 7 percent of people who buy insurance on the individual market said they would go without coverage if the mandate were no longer enforced. A majority said the mandate was not a reason they bought insurance. Only about one in five said it was a major reason.

“It’s consistent with other work we’ve done showing people want and value health insurance,” said Liz Hamel, Kaiser’s director of public opinion and survey research. “Especially in the marketplace, where so many are getting government help to pay for that coverage, I think that’s a bigger motivating factor for them to get it than the mandate.”

The mandate, in other words, may not be much of a stick, but the subsidies are a tempting carrot.

A new analysis from SP Global Ratings projected the 10-year savings at $60 billion to $80 billion, saying that the number of uninsured would drop by only five million at most by 2027. Most people buying insurance are doing so not because they fear the mandate, the agency said, but because they get a subsidy that “meaningfully offsets” the cost.

Nearly 60 percent of people who buy their own insurance receive subsidies, SP Global estimated, including 84 percent of people who use the Affordable Care Act marketplaces.


Anneliese Kittrell, who manages a veterinary practice in Detroit, qualifies for a minimal insurance subsidy. She said she would continue to buy coverage with or without a mandate.

Brittany Greeson for The New York Times

Repealing the mandate was not a part of the tax legislation that passed in the House last week, but Senate leaders added it to their bill, both as a step toward making good on their promise to dismantle Obamacare and as a way to generate a big pot of revenue. If the Senate passes its bill, differences between the two would be worked out in conference committee.

On Sunday, Mick Mulvaney, President Trump’s budget director, said on CNN’s “State of the Union” that the administration supports repealing the mandate. Most people who owe the penalty earn less than $100,000 a year, he said, arguing that “there’s actually a benefit to folks” if the mandate goes away. But he added, “If it becomes an impediment to getting the best tax bill we can, then we’re O.K. with taking it out.”

Georgia DiBenedetto, 56, who manages a financial planning office remotely from her home in Eugene, Ore., said that it was initially the threat of a penalty that made her buy health insurance. But she came to appreciate the need for coverage when she ended up in the hospital with swelling on her brain earlier this year.


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She calls the subsidies she received to buy insurance “a lifesaver” — she earns about $40,000 a year and received about $250 a month in subsidies last year, she said. And she’ll keep her coverage with or without a mandate.

“If I had been thinking, ‘How am I going to pay a hospital bill?’ I know me, I wouldn’t have gone to the hospital,” she said. “I don’t know what would have happened.”

Anneliese Kittrell, 30, manages a veterinary practice in Detroit, earning between $30,000 and $40,000 a year, which she said qualifies her for a minimal subsidy — “it’s nothing that helps, that’s for sure,” she said. Yet she was among those who told the Kaiser poll that she would continue to buy insurance, regardless of the mandate.

“I don’t get sick, which is the funny part,” she said. She identifies with the so-called young invincibles who don’t buy health insurance because they think they won’t need it. Still, “it’s not how I want to live my life, going through problem after problem,” she said. “I’d rather have my insurance in place if I need it.”

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The penalty for not carrying insurance is $695 per adult and $347.50 per child, up to a maximum of $2,085 or 2.5 percent of household adjusted gross income, whichever is higher. (If the mandate goes away, the government would not get the penalty revenues either.) There are a number of ways to qualify for an exemption, including if the cost of coverage would eat up too much of someone’s annual income; far more sought exemptions in 2015 than owed the fine.

Authors of the Affordable Care Act considered the mandate to be essential to its success, because it is supposed to prod younger and healthier people to buy insurance. With them in the risk pool, the cost of health insurance becomes lower for everyone.

Repealing the mandate would push premiums up 10 percent each year over what is currently projected, the Congressional Budget Office estimates. That could further destabilize the law’s already fragile marketplaces if it compels healthy, unsubsidized customers to leave. Higher premiums would also push the subsidies higher, increasing the government’s financial obligation to those who qualify for them.


Obamacare, Reliant on Insurance Requirement, Would Crumble Under Senate Tax Bill

Without the mandate, more people would be uninsured and premiums would rise.

The mandate continues to be unpopular, in the abstract. In a Kaiser poll released last week, 55 percent of respondents supported getting rid of it.

But about one-third of those people changed their minds when they were told that repealing the mandate would increase premiums and might result in 13 million more people without health insurance — and that most Americans automatically satisfy the requirement to carry health insurance because their employers provide it.


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Over all, about 60 percent of those polled opposed eliminating the requirement once they were told those points.

In 2015, the last year for which data is available, about 6.5 million taxpayers reported penalty payments for not having health insurance, totaling about $3 billion, down from 8.1 million tax filers who paid a total of $1.7 billion in 2014, the first year the mandate was in effect. (The 2014 amount was lower despite the larger number of people penalized because the penalty itself was lower that year.) Jason Levitis, who was the Affordable Care Act lead at the Treasury Department during the Obama administration, said the number had dropped as “more people understood how the mandate and the exemptions and the subsidies worked.”

Christy Reppeto, who is 53 and lives outside Dallas, understands all that by now — and has decided the law doesn’t work for her. She and her husband, who own an online travel company, earn too much to qualify for a subsidy. They canceled their coverage this year and resorted to a much cheaper short-term plan that does not meet the coverage requirements of the Affordable Care Act, subjecting themselves to the tax penalty.

“The middle class, like us, are getting slammed,” said Ms. Reppeto, who said she had been paying more than $2,000 a month for a plan that covered her family of four.

But the exit of the Reppetos and other healthy people at their income level does not save the government any money because they did not qualify for federal subsidies.

Tracy Pate, who works for a nonprofit group in northeastern Tennessee that helps people sign up for insurance, said the power of the subsidies has helped many people she deals with come to appreciate the law.

Many in the poor, largely rural and conservative region hated the Affordable Care Act at first, she said. But now, for many, “it’s too beneficial.” She has been busier than expected since open enrollment began on Nov. 1, surpassing her group’s weekly goals.

Ms. Pate recently met with a man who was “all in a tizzy,” she said, because he had heard premiums were rising sharply for next year. But she informed him that in fact, his subsidy would grow and his personal costs would drop, a common occurrence in some parts of the country this year.

“He said, ‘I don’t agree with Obama and I like Trump, but you know what? I do have to say this has helped me,’ ” Ms. Pate said. “I think that people are appreciative of it. Even though they don’t like to admit it, they see the benefits of it now.”

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Why Charles Manson’s health crisis is shrouded in secrecy

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Charles Manson was rushed from prison to a Bakersfield hospital this week, raising new questions about the health of the 83-year-old mass killer.

No details about his condition have been released. Here’s what we know and don’t know.

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has cited federal and state medical privacy laws that preclude the agency “from commenting on protected health information for any inmate in our custody.”

All the department will report is that Manson is still alive. It has not confirmed he was hospitalized, but local law enforcement in Bakersfield has.

This marks the second time Manson, an inmate at Corcoran State Prison, was hospitalized this year. In January, Manson spent several days in a Bakersfield hospital. The prison system would not comment on his condition, but sources at the time said he had a “serious” illness.

The most recent image of Manson, taken in August, 2017
The most recent image of Manson, taken in August. California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation

Though officials cannot comment on where specifically Manson is being treated or why, the corrections department’s regulations provide a glimpse of how tightly coordinated the process must be.

“They remain under CDCR custody and 24-hour supervision during this time,” said Vicky Waters, a department spokeswoman. “CDCR also notifies and works with hospital security and law enforcement.”

Inmates are “routinely” taken to outside hospitals for medical care ranging from scheduled surgeries to emergency trauma, she said. The department’s protocol provides up to four levels of review by a medical services committee for cases in which an inmate receives emergency care outside the prison walls.

California Correctional Health Care Services has contracted with several Central California hospitals to provide services to prisoners, including Adventist Medical Center Hanford, Bakersfield Memorial Hospital and Mercy Hospital Bakersfield.

No Bakersfield hospital would comment. But some reporters in Bakersfield last week saw a prison department van parked in front of Mercy hospital.

Given Manson’s crimes and his numerous problems as a prisoner, it’s likely significant security measures are being employed. But officials would not comment. When Manson was hospitalized in January, several prison officials were seen at the the hospital.

Manson incurred more than 100 rules violations since 1971, when he and other members of his so-called family were convicted of killing pregnant actress Sharon Tate and six other people during a bloody rampage in the Los Angeles area during two August nights in 1969.

Over the years, he has been cited for assault, repeated possession of a weapon, threatening staff, and possessing a cellphone.

Officials have said over the years that he spat in guards’ faces, threw hot coffee at a prison staffer, started fights, tried to cause a flood and set his mattress ablaze.

In 2014, Manson and Afton Elaine Burton, a 26-year-old Manson devotee, were granted a marriage license, but it expired before the two could marry. She had faithfully visited him in prison for seven years.

Though it’s highly doubtful he would ever be freed, Manson’s next parole hearing is scheduled for 2027, when he will be 92.


Where are they now? Charles Manson’s family, four decades after horrific murders

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Judge denies release of recorded interviews with Manson cult member

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Charles Manson says he is in good health in last known recorded …

CHARLES Manson claims he is “solid as a rock” in a taped prison phone call to a pal obtained by Sun Online.

In the bombshell recording, Manson, who is currently serving a life sentence for the murders of pregnant actress Sharon Tate and six others, claims he is feeling “pretty good” when asked how he is doing.

 Manson is currently serving a life sentence at a Californian prison
Manson is currently serving a life sentence at a Californian prison

Gurecki claims the taped call from earlier this year is the last recorded phone call before Manson was taken to hospital last week, reportedly close to death.

It comes as another friend of Manson’s CR Wallace – also known as “Red Wolf” – told Sun Online that reports that the 83-year-old is on his death bed are exaggerated.

Gurecki, who collects and sells Manson memorabilia often posts apparent phone calls with Manson on his YouTube channel.

In the recorded call from Corcoran State Prison, California, Gurecki asks Manson, “What’s happening?” to which he replies: “Solid as a rock, solid as a soul… roll wheel, roll.”

Manson then replied “pretty good” when asked how he was doing.

 Ben Gurecki claims to be a close friend of Manson's
Ben Gurecki claims to be a close friend of Manson’s

Later in the long and rambling conversation Manson rants about an unknown package, saying: ”The small people that are trying to get big they tear everything up that we struggled for.

“We did all this on death row, that’s what the package was all about, but the cowards gave the package to the other side because they won’t stand up for our side.”

Much of the call is inaudible but at some point Manson tells Gurecki: ”You learn a lot in jail, you don’t tell somebody I’m gonna beat your a**, unless you can do it and get away with it… you say you’re gonna beat they’re a** and you can’t and they beat your ass for saying that.

He adds: “Don’t be faking, that’s it I don’t like lying. I mean I can lie like anyone else, but I know it doesn’t do me no good.”

 Gurecki collects and sells Manson memorabilia like this original Manson police report
Gurecki collects and sells Manson memorabilia like this original Manson police report

Meanwhile Red Wolf, who also says he talks to Manson on the phone regularly, told Sun Online the reports he was close to death were unreliable – and that the 83-year-old had been taken to hospital a few times for “tests and procedures” in the past few months.

Red Wolf, who is part of the pro-Manson environmental group ATWA, said: “The policy of the prison prohibits revealing of inmate health conditions and medical histories….Sadly, Charlie’s friends and associates are essentially left in the dark until he finds an opportunity to tell us himself, which is not easily done.

“He has no access to phone usage while in the hospital, and the CDCR does not allow visitation while inmates are outside of prison grounds.”

 Manson inspired a group of followers to murder seven people in 1969
Manson inspired a group of followers to murder seven people in 1969

He said the recent reports that Manson had a heart problem and only days to live were “false and unsubstantiated”.

“No one outside prison administration and hospital staff has communication with CM [Charles Manson] currently,” Red Wolf added.

“The person, who gave all those grossly exaggerated and overtly morbid statements, has not had contact with Charlie for some time, to the best of our assessment.

“Heart failure is not a known condition affecting CM’s health… The last associate and close friend to converse with Charlie was Black Wolf [a fellow ATWA member], who visited him two Saturdays ago.

“CM has been to the hospital a few times since January for tests and procedures.”

He added however that “death is not something feared” by Manson.

Manson began to gather small group of young, largely female devotees – mainly from broken middle-class homes – known as the “Manson Family” in around 1967.

 Manson, pictured entering court, was charged with seven counts of murder and one count of conspiracy
Manson, pictured entering court, was charged with seven counts of murder and one count of conspiracy

In the summer of 1969, he directed his followers to murder in what was part of a plan to incite a race war, according to prosecutors.

He ordered four of his followers – Susan Atkins, Linda Kasabian, Patricia Krenwinkel and Charles ‘Tex’ Watson – to the Beverly Hills address of movie actress Sharon Tate with the instruction to kill everyone inside.

Less than 24 hours later, the gang tortured, murdered and mutilated wealthy LA couple Rosemary and Leno LaBianca.

They used their blood to write “Rise,” “Death to Pigs,” and “Helter Skelter,” a reference to the Beatles song, on the walls and refrigerator door.

Manson and his accomplices were all sent down for the murders, apart from Kasabian who testified against them and played no direct part in the killings.

Manson was originally sentenced to death but was spared execution and his sentence was converted to life in prison after the California Supreme Court declared the death penalty unconstitutional in that state.




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Valley News – To Your Good Health: CoolSculpting Not a Health …

Dear Dr. Roach: I would like to know your opinion regarding “cool sculpting.” Does it really work? Are there any bad consequences that a person should know about it? Is it advisable for a person in her 80s who is in good health and is not overweight but is beginning to add fat around her middle? — L.S.

Answer: CoolSculpting is a branded medical device that uses cold temperatures and vacuum to cause the death of fat cells. Over months, this can create a reduction in discrete areas of subcutaneous fat. This process, cryoablation, is related to liposuction. It is designed to remove fat and improve body appearance. It is not effective at removing large amounts of fat for overall health. A 2013 study found the procedure to be safe and well-tolerated, with an overall 73 percent patient satisfaction rate.

The negative effects seem minimal, with a few people getting additional fat growth in the treated areas, and others developing nodules under the skin. Redness, bruising and numbness are common and temporary.

By contrast, the amount of fat removed by traditional liposuction is greater than that removed by cryoablation, so the optimal procedure depends on the individual’s goals.

A person in her 80s certainly can be interested in her appearance, and cryoablation offers an alternative for an aesthetic procedure. However, I don’t advise it as a means of improving health, only for improving appearance.

Dear Dr. Roach: I just had my yearly physical exam and am concerned about my kidney test results. Last October, my GFR was 38; in February, 43. My most recent is 39. I have seen a kidney specialist and a kidney nutritionist, and thought I was eating correctly. I am mystified as to why my GFR went down. I drink 2 liters of water per day and rarely any other liquids, other than a glass of wine or two a month. I am eating vegan (no meat, fish, fowl or dairy) about 98 percent of the time. I do consume vegan cheese and mayo on my daily large salad. I also eat lots of tofu and fruit. I eat no beans (except soybeans), nuts or seeds, as recommended by my kidney specialist. I was a vegetarian for 28 years before becoming nearly vegan last year. I eat two eggs once every week or two. What else can you suggest I do to change my diet so that my GFR improves? At this time, I don’t plan on doing dialysis or a transplant, so when my kidneys are done, so am I. I am currently 75 years young. — L.G.

Answer: While I can understand that you see a drop from February until now, your GFR (glomerular filtration rate, the basic number for kidney function) is actually improved from last year. These numbers often bounce up and down a little bit, depending on fluid status at the time you took the test (including whether you were fasting). Three points isn’t enough to make a determination of whether the GFR is really decreasing; however, your values are on the low side, even for your age.

As far as diet, changing animal protein to plant protein does seem to slow the loss of kidney function (some loss is inevitable with age). Two liters of water is sufficient for all but the most active adults. If you take medications, the doses should be evaluated to be sure they are right for you: Some may need to be decreased.

Dr. Roach regrets that he is unable to answer individual letters, but will incorporate them in the column whenever possible. Readers may email questions to or at 628 Virginia Dr., Orlando, FL 32803.

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Missing 13-year-old Cleveland teen found ‘in good health’ |

Alexshia Santiago- photo from Cleveland police

Alexshia Santiago- photo from Cleveland police

CLEVELAND – Alexshia Santiago, the Cleveland girl who had been missing since Thursday has been found.

In an email, Cleveland police say that Alexshia “has been located and [is] in good health” Saturday evening.

Police issued a  Missing Endangered Child Alert for her on Thursday. She had last been seen in the area of East 17th and Superior Ave.

Police did not say where she was found and had no further information on her return.

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DC Nonprofits Use Art to Teach Healthy Living

HIV/AIDS awareness, infant mortality and drug and alcohol abuse programs are services provided by nonprofit organizations Access to Wholistic, Productive Living Institute and the Ward 7 Arts Collaborative at the Marshall Heights Community Development Organization in Northeast Washington, D.C.

The partnership provides community and public services to residents living east of the river by bringing health initiatives and the arts together. The partnership has been in effect since September.

Ralph Williams is the chief operating officer of Access to Holistic and Productive Living Institute Inc. at the Marshall Heights Community Development Organization Center. (Courtesy photo)

According to the District of Columbia Health Needs June 2016 Assessment, the percentage of families living below the poverty level in Wards 7 and 8 is about twice the citywide average and about 15 times higher than in Ward 3. Recent figures from the U.S. Census Bureau state that 40 percent of the children in Ward 7 live in poverty.

The organizations said they came together for the opportunity to collaborate and expand their resources to the community. Ralph Williams, chief operating officer of Access to Holistic and Productive Living Institute based in Brentwood, Md., said the timing of the collaboration was perfect since the non-profit is coming up on its 10th anniversary and has done little work in D.C. over the years.

“We’re a community non-profit, but we work with community health and public health alleviations and disparities throughout the United States,” Williams told the {AFRO}. But, our concentration is in Prince George’s County and the state of Maryland, as a whole.”

Williams said their organization has the capability to expand. “We’re actually starting to find out that a lot of the work that we have done and do now kind of is right along that border of the District of Columbia, particularly in Ward 7,” Williams said.

Board member of the Ward 7 Arts Collaborative, Irwin Royster, said that their non-profit, which has been in the area for nearly 15 years, is always looking for opportunities to expand and collaborate with other organizations particularly non-arts organizations to expose art to people in the area.

“There is a link between art and health,” Royster told the {AFRO}. “Sometimes people don’t see that so we thought it’d be a great idea to join forces and also it would give them [Access to Wholistic and Productive Living Institute Inc] access to the Ward 7 community and the District of Columbia community.”

The collaboration was chosen in the area because of the economic and health gaps. “As much as the district is seeing economic growth, there’s still a lot of holes and pockets of economic and health disparities within those two wards for various reasons,” said Williams. “There are a lot of food deserts particularly in Ward 8 and we know unfortunately that they’re beginning to have health desserts as well in both wards.”

Royster said they’re going to incorporate art to educate residents of Ward 7 about the resources they need to improve their health.

At the center, both entities are working together on HIV awareness and use art to educate the youth. “They [youth] are really not concerned about health or wellness at their age because they’re so vibrant,” Royster said.  “What they are interested in are artistic outlets. So, if we can use those artistic outlets and use it as a conversion or use it as a means to educate about their health, well that’ll make them interested.”

Williams said there are also plans to expand their services for drug free initiatives and other health disparities that exist, particularly cancer amongst women in the area as well.

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COLUMN: Not really healthy living – Glens Falls Post

We eventually returned and got our pint of fresh peanut butter, which now felt like a rather meager portion, along with our two baked goodies and, as an added bonus, a sample of pie in a tiny plastic cup, which we licked out because we accidently dropped our tiny sample spoons on the ground.

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6 tips to improve your vision

Home » Eye Health » 6 tips to improve your vision

By: Bel Marra Health | Eye Health | Saturday, November 18, 2017 – 06:00 PM

vision tipsThe world can truly be a beautiful place, as long as you can see it. Unfortunately, as we age, our ability to see all of the world’s wonders can diminish. Objects may appear blurry, double, or generally distorted. Although some changes in vision occur naturally through aging, there are proactive things you can do to ensure that your diminishing vision doesn’t get worse at a quicker rate. The following tips will help ensure you preserve your vision so you can continue to see all that the world had to offer.

6 tips to improve vision

Go outside: Less and less of us are actually heading outdoors anymore, especially as we get older. This is actually problematic for our vision, because eyes require oxygen and healthy blood vessels to be able to see properly. Regular exercise, especially outdoors, is a good way to ensure your eyes receive adequate oxygen and that your blood vessels in your eyes stay healthy. Furthermore, it’s been shown that staying indoors simply watching TV is linked with nearsightedness.

Maintain healthy blood pressure and glucose levels: Macular degeneration and diabetic retinopathy are the leading causes of blindness in the U.S. Both conditions are closely linked with hypertension and diabetes. Taking the necessary steps to control both factors can go a long way in protecting your vision.

Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables: Fruits and vegetables contain essential nutrients and vitamins that feed and nourish your eyes. You will want to make sure to eat a wide variety of them—and not just carrots—in order to receive a variety of these nutrients that can help you maintain healthy vision.

Keep your eyes safe: When you ride a bike, you wear a helmet. When you roller skate, you wear knee and elbow pads. When you are performing tasks where objects can get into your eyes, you must wear safety glasses. Whatever activity you’re doing, think about how it may affect your eyes and take the necessary steps to prevent injury from occurring.

Wear sunglasses: Another threat to your eyes is the sun, so wearing sunglasses can protect them. It is known that the sun’s rays can contribute to cataracts and other types of corneal diseases. You will want to make sure your lenses offer UV protection for maximum safety. Lastly, never look directly at the sun.

Have your eyes checked regularly: If you skip out on eye exams, damage and other problems could be occurring. Unfortunately, if not caught early enough, it could lead to permanent damage. Being able to see your eye doctor regularly ensures that problems are discovered early on so that treatment can take place sooner. Furthermore, your eye doctor not only offers insight about your eyes, but your eyes reveal a lot about your overall health too.

Related: How to improve vision: 11 home remedies to improve eye health

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Health Tips: Suggestions for Maintaining Good Health!

1. To sleep early at night and wake up early, at least one and a half hour before sunrise (an ambrosial hour), is good for health.

2. Health is not merely the fitness of the body. It includes an exhilarated and peaceful mind and brain.

3. To meditate and worship for 10-15 minutes in the morning after awakening provides mental peace and happiness.

4. To remain healthy and for the prevention of ailments, take a compatible and beneficial diet always. A person who follows a compatible diet does not require any medication.

5. During meals, be in a peaceful and cheerful state of mind. Spare some time for yourself at least during meal hours.

6. Take food in time. Food taken before the digestion of the previous meal is harmful for health. It is a golden rule in Ayurveda to eat only when hungry. Otherwise, fast for one meal of the day.

7. Yogurt at night and sleep during the day time (except in the summer season) is harmful for health.

8. Exercise is beneficial for the body, but exercising or working more than the body’s strength is very harmful.

9. Both obesity and emaciation are undesirable. Obesity is more harmful and is a root cause of various ailments, so beware of it.

10. Do not take disease lightly, because sometimes ignoring a common disease may become fatal.

11. For good health, an appropriate diet according to the season is recommended and one must eat less than their appetite.

12. Take 1-2 glasses of lukewarm water in the morning. Intake of lukewarm water containing the juice of half a lemon and a teaspoon of honey is very useful. Do not take tea and coffee on an empty stomach in the morning.

13. Locking of teeth during defecation prevents loosening of teeth even in old age.

14. In the morning, hold water in the mouth and sprinkle cold water in the eyes. Also clean the palate with the thumb to keep away diseases of eyes, ears, nose and throat.

15. Massaging the balls of the feet with mustard oil before bathing keeps the vision normal even in old age. Walking barefoot on green grass in the morning improves the vision. Full body massage with mustard oil, once in a week along with massage of the soles of the feet and thumbs is very beneficial. It promotes circulation and relieves excess Vata.

16. If possible, gaze at the rays of the sun at dawn for five minutes daily to improve eyesight.

17. Brushing the teeth after each meal and before sleeping at night removes food particles from between the teeth.

18. Add lemon juice to bathing water to keep away body odor.

19. Practise yogasanas and pranayamas regularly after morning ablutions and bath. This keeps away all kinds of diseases. It keeps the mind peaceful and makes the body healthy and strong. It also enhances mental strength.

20. Breakfast should include easily digestible, light and fibrous foods, sprouts, fruits and porridge. While eating, chew the food properly to facilitate assimilation.

21. After a meal, sit in the position of Vajrasana for at least 10 minutes, and if possible, walk at night after dinner.

22. Take at least 8-12 glasses of water (3-4 liters) per day.

23. Always sit in a straight posture, and if sitting on the floor, avoid any support while getting up.

24. Always keep the nails trimmed and clean and never bite your nails.

25. Do not drink water while eating food. Take water half an hour before and after the meal. Always drink water in small sips.

26. Before eating, thank God for the food He has provided and consume food as a sacrament of God.

27. Include maximum green vegetables and salad in the diet. Excessive warm and cold food is harmful for digestion. Use minimum spices in the food. Daily intake of seasonal fruits is very useful for health. Do not eat fruit along with food. Take it separately before the meal.

28. Never suppress natural urges of the body such as defecation, urination, sneezing and so on, as it may result in various diseases.

29. To deal with faulty language, conduct and thoughts and also to move ahead in the journey of life, daily at night close your eyes and think patiently, peacefully and introspectively. Work accordingly to achieve and adopt Astanga yoga in life. Do not cover the mouth while sleeping. Maintain proper ventilation in the room while sleeping. Sleeping in the left lateral position results in proper breathing from right nostril which facilitates digestion of food.

30. Do not read or sleep on the belly.

31. Application of oil on the head calms the mind and induces sound sleep.

32. Drinking water and other edibles should be clean and fresh because unhygienic conditions invites various diseases.

33. Dry hair immediately after washing to prevent sinus problem.

34. Blowing the nose forcefully may be injurious to the ears, eyes and nose.

35. Continuous nose picking and scratching the anus may be the sign of worms in the body.

36. Cracking of joints may be injurious to the body, as it causes derangement of Vata.

37. It is harmful to have sex during menstruation, which causes derangement of Vata.

38. Avoid physical exertion such as yoga or running during menstruation.

39. After coitus, milk heated with raw cashews and raw sugar promotes strength and maintains sexual vigor.

(Excerpted from the book ‘A Practical Approach To The Science Of Ayurveda: A Comprehensive Guide For Healthy Living’ by Acharya Balkrishna)

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Community news: Central Health to open clinic in Del Valle



Central Health to open clinic

Central Health and CommUnityCare Health Centers has announced that, in partnership with Travis County, a new health clinic will open starting Monday at 3518 FM 973.

Through CommUnityCare, which Central Health funds, health care services will be available from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays and Tuesdays. Integral Care, a partner of Central Health, will provide behavioral health services on Mondays.

The opening of the new Del Valle Health Center is considered a necessary yet interim solution, with plans for a larger, permanent health center on adjacent property to meet the anticipated growth in eastern Travis County.

— American-Statesman staff


Panel on human trafficking

A public panel on human trafficking will take place from 6 to 8:30 Monday at Huston-Tillotson University, 900 Chicon St.

Sha’Cerria McCrea, a student ambassador at the university from Partners Against Child Trafficking, has organized the panel to increase knowledge and spread awareness about human trafficking and domestic violence.

The panel and parking are free.

— American-Statesman staff



Tree lighting set for Friday

The annual lighting of the Christmas tree will be from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Friday at the Williamson County Courthouse, 710 S. Main St.

County Treasurer Scott Heselmeyer and Georgetown Mayor Dale Ross will flip the switch illuminating the courthouse lights and grounds at about 6 p.m.

Entertainment during the Lighting of the Square will be provided by the Austin Carolers, and refreshments will be provided.

Stores will be open until 8 p.m. The Williamson Museum will hold children’s activities from 6 to 8 p.m. and Williamson County Brown Santa will offer pictures with Santa for a $10 donation from 6:30 to 8 p.m inside the courthouse.

— American-Statesman staff



Learn about rehabilitating wildlife

The Texas Master Naturalists Lost Pines Chapter will host a meeting at 6 p.m. Monday at the Refectory at Bastrop State Park, 100 Park Road 1A.

The meeting will include a potluck dinner and a presentation. Hayley Hudnall, executive director of Austin Wildlife Rescue, will teach how orphaned, sick or injured area wildlife are rehabilitated and released back to the wild. Hudnall will also talk about the new facility in Elgin and how it serves surrounding communities.

For information: 512-294-6662.

— American-Statesman staff



Brown Santa seeks donations

The Hays County Brown Santa program is seeking toys, food and money donations to be delivered to county families in need.

The deadline for accepting unwrapped toys will be Dec. 8 and for wrapped toys Dec. 12. All toys will be wrapped from 9 a.m. to noon Dec. 12 and from 5 to 8 p.m. Dec. 11-12. To volunteer or make a donation, call 512-393-7877 or mail a check payable to Hays County Brown Santa to Hays County Brown Santa, P.O. Box 1475, San Marcos, TX 78667.

Families wanting to sign up to benefit from the program must do so by 5 p.m. Dec. 7. Locations to sign up in San Marco include the Hays County sheriff’s office, 1307 Uhland Road; Southside Community Center, 518 S. Guadalupe St.; Randolph Brooks Federal Credit Union, 1203 Thorpe Lane or 1210 Wonder World Drive; Austin Telco Federal Credit Union, 904 Bugg Lane; and the Edward Jones office, Suite 200, 133 W. San Antonio St.

Locations to sign up in Kyle include Precinct 2 Justice of the Peace Beth Smith, at 5458 FM 2770; Fox Pizza, 147 Elmhurst Drive; StorQuest Self Storage, 5500 FM 2770; and Dollar General, 770 Windy Hill Road.

Locations to sign up in Buda include Precinct 5 Justice of the Peace Scott Cary, at 500 Jack C. Hays Trail; City Hall, 121 Main St.; Austin Telco Federal Credit Union, 330 Old San Antonio Road; Falcon International Bank, 1795 Main St.; and Randolph Brooks Credit Union, 5045 E. Goforth St.

Other county locations to sign up include Precinct 3 Justice of the Peace Andy Cable, at Suite 104 200 Stillwater Road, Wimberley; and in Dripping Springs at Precinct 4 Hays County office, 195 Roger Hanks Parkway; Randolph Brooks Federal Credit Union, 1040 Rob Shelton Blvd.; and Dollar General, Suite A, 2400 U.S 290 West.

— American-Statesman staff


World War II veteran David Glenn Cooke Jr. of Austin turned 93 on Wednesday.

World War II veteran Douglas Murphy of Austin turned 93 on Thursday.

We print birthdays for World War II veterans from Central Texas on Sundays as space allows. Email the name, birth date and current hometown to

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