Monday is health day for the LA Times. Along with the regular Front Page, California, Sports, and Calendar sections, we get a slender, fascinating section about nutrition, fitness, medicine, and the occasional extended feature about a misunderstood disease.

In honor of my favorite newspaper, I'm throwing in a random post about health today. I actually have two little nuggets I'd like to share with the blogosphere. It goes without saying that I have no medical expertise and you shouldn't believe a single word I say.

1. Magnesium

I have a book called The Miracle of Magnesium by Carolyn Dean (M.D., N.D.). Yet, it has the slightly fanatical tone indemic to alternative medicine. But Dr. Dean makes some pretty compelling claims about magnesium and our collective lack thereof. No matter how many fruits and vegetables you eat, it's virtually impossible to get the recommended daily intake of magnesium, because there isn't enough left in our soil. But magnesium deficiency is related to a million health problems (I'm pretty sure that magnesium deficiency was actually responsible for the Fall). For instance, magnesium is one of the minerals that is essential for the production of serotonin, which is intimately related to depression. Prozac and its pharmaceutical dopplegangers artificially raise serotonin levels, but according to Dr. Dean, you could treat the chemical imbalance with a vitamin & mineral cocktail that is heavy on the magnesium.

But don't take Dr. Dean's word for it. Ben started treating his migraines with magnesium and a B complex, and it works.

2. Nasal Lavaging

I'm going out on a limb here. I am optimistic that my loyal readers are willing to go where no blog has ever gone. Literally. I blog-searched "nasal lavaging," and you have here an exclusive.

What is this esoteric practice, you ask? It's the next frontier of gargling, and apparently it has been practiced in many cultures for many years. It is a method of cleaning out your nose and nasal cavities. You take a mug of salt water, pour a bit in the palm of your hand, and snuff it up your nose. You do need to have the right salinity, or it will burn like it does when you get water up your nose in the swimming pool. Once the water is up there in the wild blue yonder, you simply blow your nose with the hanky of your choice. If you do this when you start to get that scratchy, sore feeling in your throat, you can actually wash away the bacteria that's trying to make you sick. At least, that's what I believe. And with this kind of thing, believing is half the battle. Incidentally, this can also be done with over-the-counter nasal sprays, but I don't think you can achieve quite the same force as option #1.

I hope you've enjoyed this rare Health page. :-)

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