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You have questions. The world has answers. The Human Health Project has made a space to bring together the experiences from people using many different forms of health care. We will connect you with people across the world who share conventional, complementary, alternative and holistic health information about their health conditions so that you can be informed, engaged, and empowered.
Human Health Project is a free peer to peer health support community. Unlike other online health communities, we are a noncommercial, subscriber-supported, 501(c)(3) not-for-profit initiative dedicated to helping people around the world help each other with their healthcare. Our interactive community site is launching soon – Sign up to get notified of the launch!
About Human Health Project
Human Health Project (HHP) provides a noncommercial and free forum for patients anywhere to connect and build community while supporting each other. Since 2006, our mission is to provide a free, noncommercial, online peer-to-peer resource that empowers individuals, communities and global underserved populations to better manage their health through sharing of health experiences, information, and support. HHP strives to grade evidence-based outcomes from its community in order to give back new insights and enhance care. Learn more…
Interview with the CEO
The idea for Human Health Project (HHP) originated from Dr. Phil Harrington’s personal experience struggling to find a diagnosis for his own illness. This firsthand experience of searching for health information for himself gave him a better understanding of how difficult it is to find reliable health information from the patients’ perspective. This inspired him to set up Human Health Project as a nonprofit, noncommercial, volunteer based initiative that empowers individuals to help each other online with information on their health conditions, diagnosis and treatment. Check out the interview with our CEO and Founder, Dr. Phil Harrington.
Q. What does the Human Health Project (HHP) do?
A. Human Health Project (HHP) provides a noncommercial and free forum for patients anywhere to connect and build community while supporting each other. More People, More Information, Better Health.
Q. How is the Human Health Project different from other online health sites?
A. Unlike other online health communities, we are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to peer to peer health support.
Q. When is HHP’s interactive community site available?
A. Our new, interactive community site is coming soon. We are on track for launching the site this Fall.
Q. How can I help HHP?
A. There are a few ways you can get involved:
- Volunteer – Visit our Volunteer page to learn more about people we currently need to help us grow HHP.
- Partner with Us – Work with us as a partner organization or as a health advocate
- Sponsor or Attend our Upcoming Event – Our next event is the 2nd Annual Benefit Concert on December 12, 2015
- Donate – Your funding support enables us to remain noncommercial and volunteer-based while continuing to build a robust product for our health community
- Share Human Health Project with someone who can benefit from peer to peer health support
- Sign up to Human Health Project and become a member
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Why does Health and Wellness Matter?
For most of us, getting the most out of life is important, and is probably something we all aspire to. Being healthy and well means different things to different people, but on some level all of us want to be physically able to carry out our daily activities without too much difficulty. This is often referred to as our general fitness level. Why is it important to be generally fit in both mind and body? Because, in addition to having to carry out our daily activities, including work, family responsibilities, and social obligations, most of us want to live long and productive lives. In order to accomplish this, we need to strive towards a healthy combination of physical, mental, emotional and social well-being.
My goal is to help you achieve this. I particularly believe that we need to maintain a certain level of health and wellness before anything bad (medically) happens to us. I speak from experience as a 3-time cancer survivor. Each bout with cancer was difficult, but my high level of fitness and general well-being saved me each time, and my recovery period was much less complicated and easier than expected. According to the American College of Sports Medicine, the reason health and wellness matter, is because being physically and emotionally fit is essential to decreasing one’s risk of developing many serious chronic diseases including heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, depression, arthritis, osteoporosis, and even some cancers. More importantly, if we do develop any of these conditions, generally, the fitter we are, the better we will be able to deal with and manage our illness.
What are some features of Wellness Coaching?
Wellness Coaching can include discussions about anything that impacts your health, fitness, and general well-being. The five main areas that a Wellness Coach can help with are: fitness, nutrition, stress management, weight, and other health-related issues. Wellness Coaching can help you to eat healthier, get fitter, and increase your daily energy. The main focus with Wellness Coaching is to make long-lasting healthy lifestyle changes, not to provide quick fixes.
How is Wellness Coaching different from personal training, therapy, seeing a nutritionist or even going to my primary care doctor?
While many Wellness Coaches are nutritionists, personal trainers, or therapists, not all trainers, therapists and nutritionists are Wellness Coaches. The biggest difference between a Wellness Coach and other allied health practitioners is in the approach that they take towards helping you to achieve your goals. A Wellness Coach won’t tell you what to do, but will rather ask you where you want to go with your wellness, why it matters to you and how you want to get there. Unlike therapy, a Wellness Coach will not focus on your past, but will rather look towards your future. Unlike a personal trainer or nutritionist, a Wellness Coach does not lead you through exercises or give you a specific diet to follow, but rather will help you establish fitness and nutrition goals and see that you accomplish them, little by little. Unlike a primary care physician, a Wellness Coach has the time to spend with you on your health and wellness vision and objectives. A Wellness Coach will support you and guide you to create your definition of wellbeing and what that means to you. The main focus of Wellness Coaching is to concentrate on your strengths and build on them to help you realize your goals. Together, you and the coach will identify your motivators and obstacles as you create your wellness vision for the future.
What are kinds of credentials does a Wellness Coach have?
A nationally recognized organization called Wellcoaches, in collaboration with the American College of Sports Medicine, currently provides an outstanding model in Health and Wellness Coaching education and training. This organization certifies health professionals who meet pre-requisites in the fields of exercise, nutrition, or other allied-health disciplines. Coaches go through a rigorous training, take both a written and oral examination, and must regularly take continuing education courses to stay updated on the latest research and information. Coaches only work within their scope of practice, however, and will refer to other health professionals when and if necessary. Coaches do not make diagnoses and may recommend that clients seek a psychiatrist, psychologist, therapist or other health care professional for treatment, if appropriate.
Why would I work with a Wellness Coach?
Most of us know that we need to be fitter, lose weight, exercise more, eat healthier, etc. but we find that it is extremely difficult to make these important and critical changes on our own. We might begin a fitness program or go on a diet, but we don’t seem to be able to follow through with what we started. The knowledge and information about being healthy is all around us, yet achieving good health is much easier said than done. A Wellness Coach can work with you to set goals, prioritize what matters most and help you to follow through! A good coach will help you build confidence in your ability to make changes and create new (healthy habits) on your own, so eventually, the coach is no longer needed. In Wellness Coaching, a close relationship and partnership with a coach provides structure, accountability, expertise, and inspiration. This enables the client to learn, grow, and develop beyond what he or she can do alone.
What is Wellness Coaching really like?
In the first session with a Wellness Coach, the client and coach go through a very long and detailed medical questionnaire to establish a baseline of where the client is on his or her ‘wellness journey.’ This is followed by the coach asking the client to come up with a very detailed ‘wellness vision’… a picture of exactly what he or she imagines their best self to be in one year, 3 months, one month and one week from the day they start working together. After that, motivators and obstacles are identified, and long-term behavioral goals are set that align with this vision. After the client and coach establish the ‘why’, then the ‘how’ is addressed in great detail. Potential obstacles to each desired behavior are discussed, and strategies to overcome them are developed. The client is encouraged to remember and discuss how he or she used their particular strengths to overcome obstacles in the past, and to formulate ideas of how to use them successfully again.
Finally, at the end of this and each subsequent session, weekly, realistic and well-defined goals are set by the client. The coach’s job is to encourage the client to stretch him or herself just enough to feel challenged by these weekly goals, but not so overwhelmed by them. Incremental, weekly successes, small as they might be, are why this process works as well as it does. Clients begin to feel accountable to themselves and their coaches. Their self-confidence and self-esteem grows with each success. Before long, they are accomplishing more than they believed possible when they first started.
Who could benefit from Wellness Coaching?
Do you have significant changes you want to make in one or more areas of your life? Do you need to overhaul your eating patterns, or begin to make exercise a routine part of your day, rather than have it be an afterthought? Do you know that your stress coping mechanisms are not working, but you don’t have any idea what to do about it? If so, a Wellness Coach might be exactly what you are looking for to help you establish and realize your health and wellness goals.
The four primary components (also known as the components of health related fitness) that are important to improved physical health are as follows:
* Cardiorespiratory capacity is the ability of the body to take in oxygen (respiration), deliver it to the cells (circulation), and use it at the cellular level to create energy (bioenergetics) for physical work (activity). In fitness, we also refer to cardiorespiratory capacity as aerobic capacity. This capacity includes aerobic endurance (how long), aerobic strength (how hard), and aerobic power (how fast). Some of the long-term adaptations of cardiorespiratory training are: decreased resting heart rate, decreased risk of cardiovascular disease, improved endurance, increased stroke volume and cardiac output.
* Muscular capacity refers to the spectrum of muscular capability. This includes muscular endurance (i.e., the ability to apply force over a long period of time or to complete repeated muscle contractions); muscular strength (i.e., the ability to generate force, or the maximum amount of force that a muscle can exert in a single contraction); and muscular power (i.e., the ability to generate strength in an explosive way). Some of the long-term adaptations of improving muscular capacity are increased strength, improved muscular endurance, increased basal metabolic rate, improved joint strength, and overall posture.
* Flexibility is the range of movement or amount of motion that a joint is capable of performing. Each joint has a different amount of flexibility. Some of the long-term adaptations of improved flexibility are decreased risk of injury, improved range of motion, improved bodily movements, and improved posture.
* Body composition is the proportion of fat-free mass (muscle, bone, blood, organs, and fluids) to fat mass (adipose tissue deposited under the skin and around organs). Some of the long-term adaptations of improving body composition are decreased risk of cardiovascular disease, improved basal metabolic rate, improved bodily function, and improved BMI.
The secondary components of fitness (also known as the components of performance based fitness) are involved in all physical activity and are necessary for daily functioning. Athletes experience different levels of success depending on how well these secondary fitness components are developed. Although the primary components of fitness are thought to be the most important, we should not ignore the secondary components because of their importance in the completion of daily tasks. The secondary components include the following.
* Balance is the ability to maintain a specific body position in either a stationary or dynamic (moving) situation.
* Coordination is the ability to use all body parts together to produce smooth and fluid motion.
* Agility is the ability to change direction quickly.
* Reaction time is the time required to respond to a specific stimulus.
* Speed is the ability to move rapidly. Speed is also known as velocity (rate of motion).
* Power is the product of strength and speed. Power is also known as explosive strength.
* Mental capability is the ability to concentrate during exercise to improve training effects as well as the ability to relax and enjoy the psychological benefits of activity (endorphins).
Health is a dynamic process because it is always changing. We all have times of good health, times of sickness, and maybe even times of serious illness. As our lifestyles change, so does our level of health.
Those of us who participate in regular physical activity do so partly to improve the current and future level of our health. We strive toward an optimal state of well-being. As our lifestyle improves, our health also improves and we experience less disease and sickness. When most people are asked what it means to be healthy, they normally respond with the four components of fitness mentioned earlier (cardiorespiratory ability, muscular ability, flexibility, and body composition). Although these components are a critical part of being healthy, they are not the only contributing factors. Physical health is only one aspect of our overall health.
The other components of health (Greenberg, 2004, p. 7) that are just as important as physical health include the following:
* Social health-The ability to interact well with people and the environment and to have satisfying personal relationships.
* Mental health-The ability to learn and grow intellectually. Life experiences as well as more formal structures (e.g., school) enhance mental health.
* Emotional health-The ability to control emotions so that you feel comfortable expressing them and can express them appropriately.
* Spiritual health-A belief in some unifying force. It varies from person to person but has the concept of faith at its core.
Wellness is the search for enhanced quality of life, personal growth, and potential through positive lifestyle behaviours and attitudes. If we take responsibility for our own health and well-being, we can improve our health on a daily basis. Certain factors influence our state of wellness, including nutrition, physical activity, stress-coping methods, good relationships, and career success.
Each day we work toward maximizing our level of health and wellness to live long, full, and healthy lives. The pursuit of health, personal growth, and improved quality of life relies on living a balanced life. To achieve balance, we need to care for our mind, body, and spirit.
If any of these three areas is consistently lacking or forgotten about, we will not be at our optimal level of health. We are constantly challenged with balancing each of these three areas throughout life.
As fitness professionals, we have a responsibility to guide and motivate others to improve their level of health and wellness. We can promote a holistic approach to health (mind, body, and spirit), not just encourage physical activity. As good role models, we should demonstrate positive health behaviours that assist in improving our own health and the health of others. If our focus is strictly on the physical benefits of exercise, we are doing a disservice to our clients and we are not fulfilling our professional obligation.
As fitness professionals, we spend a great deal of time inspiring and assisting others in their pursuit of improved health. Education is an important aspect of this. We must promote the benefits of regular activity and help people understand why they should be active.
Figure 1.2 will help you educate your clients about the benefits of activity and why each of these benefits is important to long-term health.
Health Canada introduced Canada’s Physical Activity Guide to Healthy Active Living to help Canadians make wise choices about physical activity as a way to improve health. Scientists say you should accumulate 60 minutes of physical activity every day to stay healthy or improve health. The recommendations in the Physical Activity Guide are as follows:
* Endurance-On 4 to 7 days a week, perform continuous activity for your heart, lungs, and circulatory system. Time required for improvements depends on effort.
* Flexibility-On 4 to 7 days a week, perform gentle reaching, bending, and stretching to keep muscles relaxed and joints mobile.
* Strength-On 2 to 4 days a week, perform resistance exercise to strengthen muscles and bones and improve posture.
The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) has also developed activity guidelines for improving health:
* Perform 30 minutes or more of moderate-intensity physical activity on most days of the week for cardiovascular health. The 30 minutes need not be continuous.
* Performing 1 set of 8 to 12 repetitions of resistance training for the entire body is necessary to maintain and develop muscular strength and endurance.
* Flexibility training should be performed daily, including stretches for all major muscle groups, in order to maintain mobility.
Crossword Fun may belong to an emerging gaming category dubbed ‘ wellness gaming ‘. Wellness gaming is a very specific genre that is aimed at sharpening the mind and body. It is well-known, for example, that a crossword puzzle can help an elderly mind stay sharp.
What is also interesting is that the ‘wellness gaming’ industry is on the verge of a serious boom. Projected revenue by 2015 is $2 billion.
Here are some excerpts from an article written by Larry Kemp, at The Real Story:
More and more people are having senior moments. As the population slowly ages, there becomes room for these games that focus on brain stimulation. A lotof women don’t play games because they don’t want to waste their time. However, 85% of wellness gamers are women. These gamesresolvetheir guilt towards gaming. It becomes more than just a game, it becomes a lifestyle brand.
So what’s the future like? You can bet on more money being poured into wellness and fitness gaming. Keep your eyes peeled for these games to become a lot more mainstream, and appealing to big audiences.
The new version of Crossword Fun is here, fresh and hot, and promises a lot of fun, especially to movie buffs!
Following the popularity of the application, both on the hosted website and on Facebook, we have added an interesting new feature to its functionality: the inclusion of photos. What this practically means is that word definitions are now paired with a relative headshot picture that helps the crossword participant to recognize the person that the definition refers to.
To put this to work, a new category came to play: Movie Actors. Using the popular imdb.com as a source, the application selects trivia information and a photograph of an actor from a selection of over 1,500 actors and actresses and constructs the crossword definition, expecting from the player to identify the person and fill the puzzle with his/her surname. The outcome is very exciting as you can see from the screenshot below:
As always, crossword sources are automatically selected from online crawlers and the puzzler that is generated in every visit is never the same with the one before. Every refresh to the page will take you to a new puzzle to solve, so don’t hesitate, go and test your Movie Trivia knowledge and put your name up there in the Hall of Fame.
As for ourselves, we’re really excited with this new feature and are already planning some new categories to put into use. The possibilities are endless, so stay tuned!
See below the most important key-points to help you play the game:
A new crossword puzzle is automatically generated every time you refresh the page.
When the introduction is over, you are requested to enter a name.
- If you have played the game at least once, the name you have used is already in there for you, so it is recommended that you keep your used name so that the Hall of Fame statistics will remain consistent.
- If you are a first-time player, you should enter a name before proceeding. Make it big and as unique as possible so that it will be distinct on the Hall of Fame. If you have cookies disabled, the system will not remember the name for you, so try to remember the name you used when prompted again in a future attempt.
Click on ‘ OK, Move on ‘.
In the Options page, you should select the puzzle Category that you wish to auto-generate a crossword for (default is: Word Definitions) and then you may (or may not) toggle some options on/off. These are:
- Skill level: Novice (upon finishing typing a word entirely, the word is highlited in red – false input – or black – correct input).
- Skill level: Expert (No highliting of words or letters while typing.User has no indication whatsoever of the corectness of the word typed).
- Complexity: Lite (Lite complexity means that at most 20 words are included in the generated crossword).
- Complexity: Complex (a complex crossword contains at most 30 words to be discovered).
After making the desired choices, click on ‘ To the Game! ‘.
Have been tinkering with the Facebook Developer API for over two days to manage to include the Crossword Fun game to their Application Directory. Then, it was necessary to wait for another two days for their system to be updated. I mean, that a simple cron job that should run once a day, needs a whole lot more. Four days in total… Now, that is a lot of wasted time for such a simple task!
I must say that Facebook developers’ experience with the API is as frustrating as Facebook end-users’ experience is (I never liked Facebook as a user, I find it unfriendly to say the least). But even as a developer who wishes to roll out an application to Facebook, you get more of the same sh*t; there is a complete lack of any formal documentation and hardly any testing to the new features that come out. Developers are easily lost and, what should be an easy task, becomes a daunting task! Many things seem to be broken since deployment.
Anyway, after a lot of effort I managed to port the Flash application to Facebook (just a Facebook iframe which hosts the Crossword SWF file) but it still requires some more visitors before being accepted. So, I’d appreciate your click on my link (requires login in to your Facebook account) over here:
All participations are highly appreciated. Cheers.
Crossword Fun status update:
- we’ve given a new look & feel to the puzzle game’s website,
- a major bug that messed up the correspondence between words and their definitions is now fixed,
- the website now has a Hall of Fame.
More specifically, you can now visit the Hall of Fame page, select the Crossword Category that interests you and see the best all-time scores, the users that achieved them and the time taken.