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How to Make Your Home a Haven

by Tony Isaacs
author of
Cancer's Natural Enemy

(The Best Years in Life) Stress has been aptly called "the silent killer" and has been identified as the number one cause of death.  Creating a relaxing and rewarding home environment can make a big difference in beating stress as well as enjoying life more fully.

A good place to start would be house plants and garden plants.  Working with plants and working with our hands in the soil is a very rewarding and calming natural endeavor that mankind has been doing for thousands of years.  Plus, fragrant plants and scents have actually been proven to reduce stress. Plants with bright colors can help brighten your day and time spent tending to plants is very relaxing and emotionally rewarding. Plants and fragrant scents have recently been proven to reduce stress, thus tending to validate aromatherapy which has often been regarded with skepticism.

Scientists in Japan have reported the first scientific evidence that inhaling certain fragrances does indeed alter gene activity and blood chemistry in ways that can reduce stress levels.

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The study, which appears in the American Chemical Society`s Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, exposed lab rats to stressful conditions while inhaling and not inhaling linalool, which is a fragrance found naturally in lavender, mint, coriander, bergamot, lemon, mango and many other fragrant plants. After inhaling linalool, the rats which were exposed to stressful conditions had stress-elevated levels of neutrophils and lymphocytes return to near normal levels (both neutrophils and lymphcytes are key parts of the immune system).

In all, linalool is found in over 200 species of plants, mainly from mints, scented herbs, laurels such as cinnamon and rosewood, and citrus fruits. It is also found in some birch trees and other plants and has even been found in some fungi. The majority of the fragrant plants which contain linalool are noted for having a floral scent with a touch of spiciness.

The scientists also found that inhaling linalool reduced the activity of more than 100 genes that are normally significantly elevated in stressful situations.

Other ideas:

Make use of plenty of houseplants. Not have houseplants been proven to have a soothing effect, they provide oxygen and cleanse the air of common household pollutants which can cause stress and anxiety, including Trichloroethylene (TCE), Benzene and Formaldehyde. The best plants are:

Heartleaf Philodendron - Philodendron scandens `oxycardium`
Elephant Ear Philodendron - Philodendron domesticum
Cornstalk Dracaena - Dracaena fragrans `Massangeana`
English Ivy - Hedera helix,
Spider Plant - Chlorophytum comosum
Janet Craig Dracaena - Dracaena deremensis `Janet Craig`
Warneck Dracaena - Dracaena deremensis `Warneckii`
Weeping Fig - Ficus Benjamina
Golden Pothos - Epipiremnum aureum
Peace Lily - Spathiphyllum `Mauna Loa`
Selloum Philodendron - Philodendron selloum
Chinese Evergreen - Aglaonema modestum
Bamboo or Reed Palm - Chamaedorea sefritzii
Snake Plant - Sansevieria trifasciata
Red-edged Dracaena - Dracaena marginata


Another good idea is to try to avoid having people in your house who create stressful situations.

And you can make your home more tranquil by using pastels, pictures of peaceful settings and playing soft, relaxing music in the background.

If your home environment tends to get a bit hectic from children or roommates, you can also create one or more special places especially for you, such as your bedroom, a study, sewing room, indoor or outdoor garden, etc., which will provide you a home getaway that provides you with plenty of tranquil quiet time.

With just a little effort, turning your home into a peaceful and rewarding haven can reap big rewards for your health and wellbeing.

See also:

Taking Time to Smell the Roses Really CAN Ease Stress

45 Ways to Reduce Stress

"Stress and Depression by Jon Barron 

About the author

Tony Isaacs is a member of the National Health Federation and the American Botanical Council. He is a natural health advocate and researcher and the author of books and articles about natural health including "Cancer's Natural Enemy." Mr. Isaacs articles are featured at The Truth About Cancer, the Health Science Institute's Healthiertalk website, CureZone, the Crusador, Health Secrets, the Cancer Tutor, the Silver Bulletin, the New Zealand Journal of Natural Health, and several other venues. In addition, he hosts the Yahoo Oleandersoup Health group of over 3500 members and the CureZone Ask Tony Isaacs - Featuring Luella May forum. He is also the local moderator of the CureZone Cancer Alternatives forum. Tony and his partner Luella May host The Best Years in Life natural health website where their motto is "It's never too late or too early to begin living longer, healthier and happier lives."

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