posted on 07.07.14 Study: Fasting for Three Days Can Reboot Your Immune System

Fasting for as little as three days can regenerate the entire immune system, even in the elderly, scientists have found in a breakthrough described as “remarkable”.

Although fasting diets have been criticised by nutritionists for being unhealthy, new research suggests starving the body kick-starts stem cells into producing new white blood cells, which fight off infection.

Scientists at the University of Southern California say the discovery could be particularly beneficial for people suffering from damaged immune systems, such as cancer patients on chemotherapy.

It could also help the elderly whose immune system becomes less effective as they age, making it harder for them to fight off even common diseases.

The researchers say fasting “flips a regenerative switch” which prompts stem cells to create brand new white blood cells, essentially regenerating the entire immune system.

via: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/10878625/Fasting-for-three-days-can-regenerate-entire-immune-system-study-finds.html

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posted on 06.07.14 Tai Chi Slows the Aging Process in Young Adults

Putnam Valley, NY. (May 28, 2014) – Tai Chi, a traditional Chinese martial art and sport, has been found to be beneficial in raising the numbers of an important type of cell when three groups of young people were tested to discover the benefits of Tai Chi, brisk walking or no exercise. The group performing Tai Chi saw a rise in their cluster of differentiation 34 expressing (CD34+) cells, a stem cell important to a number of the body’s functions and structures.

To evaluate the potential life-lengthening effect of Tai Chi, we conducted a year-long, retrospective cross-sectional study comparing the rejuvenating and anti-aging effects among three groups of volunteers under the age of 25 who engaged in either Tai Chi (TCC), brisk walking (BW), or no exercise habit (NEH),” said study corresponding author Dr. Shinn-Zong Lin of the Center for Neuropsychiatry, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan. “We used young volunteers because they have better cell-renewing abilities than the old population and we also wanted to avoid having chronic diseases and medications as interfering factors.”

According to the authors, Tai Chi “has been confirmed to benefit” patients with mild to moderate Parkinson’s disease and fibromyalgia. In addition, they cite possible advantages of Tai Chi in pain reduction, fall prevention and balance improvement, aerobic capacity, blood pressure, quality of life and stress reduction.

"Compared with the NEH group, the TCC group had a significantly higher number of CD 34+ cells," wrote the authors. "We found that the CD34+ cell count of the TCC group was not significantly higher than the BW group - unless the two oldest participants in the BW group were excluded."

CD 34+ cells, they explained, express the CD 34 protein and are “cluster markers” for hematopoietic stem cells (blood stem cells) involved in cell self-renewal, differentiation and proliferation.

"It is possible that Tai Chi may prompt vasodilation and increase blood flow," said Lin. "Considering that BW may require a larger space or more equipment, Tai Chi seems to be an easier and more convenient choice of anti-aging exercise."

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posted on 18.02.14

Amongst White Clouds - a journey inspired by Red Pine’s “Road to Heaven” and a thoughtful meditation on the lives of Buddhist hermits in the picturesque mountains of China.

Related:

Ethical Reclusion in Daoism

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posted on 22.01.14

The Mysterious Palms of Ba Gua - Chinese Documentary (English subtitles)

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Wang Ziping practicing with a stone lock (shi suo)
This elder is making swinging a cinder block up in the air look easy! Almost a proto-kettlebell workout!
via posted on 22.01.14

Wang Ziping practicing with a stone lock (shi suo)

This elder is making swinging a cinder block up in the air look easy! Almost a proto-kettlebell workout!

via

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Cui Yishi’s Dantian Development
“In summer, my grandfather would normally sit in our courtyard practicing his taiji while wearing a dalian (Chinese sleeveless wrestler’s jacket). When the mood took him, he would let me feel his belly. To me, it felt as if there was a rubber ball in his belly which could move around to follow your hand. If you pushed on it, it felt as though your hand was ‘sucked’ in and you couldn’t pull it back. Then, the ‘ball’ would suddenly ‘spit’ your hand out, bouncing you back several steps.
Another time, we saw my grandfather sitting shirtless on a stool. He had stuck a flattened lump of dough onto his belly; as he went through his ‘seated taiji’, not only did the dough not fall off, it moved around with the movements of his belly. This kind of gongfu was amazing! Even now, I don’t really understand how he did it. ‘This gongfu of mine you won’t be able to practice, it’s a taiji training method called dan tian gong, most normal people can’t practice it. I’ve been training it since I was a kid. In pushing hands, I’m not afraid of people pushing directly on my stomach; if they do, they won’t be able to get away.”
It is obvious that the taijiquan that Cui practiced contained training methods that produced intense dan tian development. Do these training methods still exist in Yang style or have they been lost over time?”
via http://wulinmingshi.wordpress.com/2011/06/16/stories-of-cui-yishi/ posted on 21.01.14

Cui Yishi’s Dantian Development

“In summer, my grandfather would normally sit in our courtyard practicing his taiji while wearing a dalian (Chinese sleeveless wrestler’s jacket). When the mood took him, he would let me feel his belly. To me, it felt as if there was a rubber ball in his belly which could move around to follow your hand. If you pushed on it, it felt as though your hand was ‘sucked’ in and you couldn’t pull it back. Then, the ‘ball’ would suddenly ‘spit’ your hand out, bouncing you back several steps.

Another time, we saw my grandfather sitting shirtless on a stool. He had stuck a flattened lump of dough onto his belly; as he went through his ‘seated taiji’, not only did the dough not fall off, it moved around with the movements of his belly. This kind of gongfu was amazing! Even now, I don’t really understand how he did it. ‘This gongfu of mine you won’t be able to practice, it’s a taiji training method called dan tian gong, most normal people can’t practice it. I’ve been training it since I was a kid. In pushing hands, I’m not afraid of people pushing directly on my stomach; if they do, they won’t be able to get away.”

It is obvious that the taijiquan that Cui practiced contained training methods that produced intense dan tian development. Do these training methods still exist in Yang style or have they been lost over time?”

via http://wulinmingshi.wordpress.com/2011/06/16/stories-of-cui-yishi/

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