Hi there nesstie,
According to science, you don’t need to save your tears for another day. Emotional crying (as opposed to tears involuntarily released due to environmental factors) releases a bunch of chemicals that make you feel good.
Lifehacker’s Aisha Jordan talked to communication pathologist and cognitive neuroscientist Dr. Caroline Leaf, who said that emotional tears can calm you down, balance you out, and help you think more clearly. While we’re not advocating for a forced cry sesh, chances are you’re going to feel better if you let yourself cry when you feel the need to. A disclaimer, though, that if you feel like you’re crying too much, or for too long, or it’s uncontrollable and interfering with your life, it’s also healthy to seek help and find out if there are deeper underlying issues.
But crying in general shouldn’t be viewed as a sign of fragility—you're doing your body good. Think of it as a wet chemical detox. A smol wellness sob. When you’re sweaty as heck after working out, you’re not beating yourself up over the fact that your body knows to cool itself down. Why make yourself feel bad for letting your body do its thing when you need to cry out some of the bad vibes?
Until next time,
Melanie, editor at Ness
A baker’s dozen
The case for comfort in moderation. And adult sleep training. And blob girl summer. How to slow down time, according to science. How to take care of your underarms (yep, there’s an exfoliator for your armpits). How to give yourself a fresh start in just 10 days. How to read your coworkers’ emotions when you’re masked and/or remote. How AA meetings adapted to the pandemic. A wellness advice podcast tackles this unique period of dating in an increasingly post-vax world. Three couples talk about why they aired their therapy sessions on reality TV. Singapore’s government just dropped the song of the summer. Understanding the risks of our latest wellness obsession: collagen. The computer revolution never cared about our bodies.
When Spiritfarer—a game where you play as a ferrymaster who cares for and guides spirits to the afterlife—launched last year, it was praised by many as a lovely simulation about death and grief, one that was released at a poignant time. The company itself describes the game as a “cozy management game about dying.”
In the real world, over the last year, we’ve gravitated toward gentle acts of care: gardening, baking bread, knitting, redecorating our homes. It’s these individualized acts of care that players of Spiritfarer do for their spirit passengers before ushering them to their afterlife and saying goodbye. Game developer Thunder Lotus Games will be releasing new updates to the game in the spring, summer, and fall.
In the Wild
The Everlasting Gobstopper of vitamins
As a direct response to carrying around a hodgepodge of capsules and chewables everyday, a vitamin company is 3D-printing one gummy to cater to all your vita-needs. The company, Nourished, launched in the US in November of last year, and asks you to take a quiz to figure out what vitamins you need, personalizing your gummy for you. The gummy itself is vegan, sugar-free, hexagonal, and seven layers.
Nourished has a factory in England where your customized gummies are made. The seven nutrients you need are churned out of 3D-printer cartridges. Nourished’s patented 3D food printer was approved by the FDA. The gummies reportedly taste like Sour Patch Kids.
Peloton and your privacy
Everyone’s favorite pandemic exercise bike trend has a security problem. This month, some pen testers spotted a data breach that let bad actors access a bunch of information from registered users, such as their IDs, location, workout stats, gender, age, and whether they’re in a studio.
Sure, that isn’t sensitive enough intel to steal someone’s identity, but it still puts users at risk for other online vulnerabilities, like a phishing attempt. And, in general, it reminds us that one fitness giant’s weakness is millions of others’ invasion of privacy. It’s valid enough to be disconcerted by a stranger actively snooping at where you’re working out.
It’s also a reminder that you don’t owe anyone—especially a massive corporation—the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Will your workout be just as successful if you lie about your age and gender in the app? Probably. This goes for all workout apps, not just Peloton: If your exercise routine remains the same without divulging a bunch of personal info to the company, lie your butt off, cutie.
Debunking chlorophyll TikTok
TikTok is littered with health and wellness advice, but just because it’s featured on your “For You” page or touted by your favorite influencer doesn’t mean it’s legit. One wellness fad to be wary of? Chlorophyll water.
Experts advise riding the Chlorophyll wave with caution and moderation. Research on the plant-based supplement to date is limited, inconclusive, and short-term. That’s… not great! And definitely not credible enough to model your diet around. There may be some anti-aging and anti-inflammatory benefits, but there’s still a lot we don’t know about adopting chlorophyll (in any form) into your diet on a regular basis and as a standalone antioxidant.
Let’s get physical
You likely haven’t been to the dentist in a hot minute. We’re in a pandemic, and there’s really no way around taking your mask off to check your teeth health. But in a post-vax world, it’s much safer to get those teeth and gums checked out. And it’s important! If you’re still putting off making an appointment, it might not be pandemic-related at all. You might be dealing with dental anxiety. And that’s totally normal. Experts recommend sharing your anxieties with your dentist ahead of time, practicing breathing exercises, and finding a dentist that you feel comfortable and safe with.
(Bonus physical tip—why you should, and how to, exercise the lil muscles in your feet.)
Fresh air, but make it affordable
Air purifiers can be expensive, but good indoor air quality is important for your health—those tiny particles in pollution can enter your lungs and even your bloodstream. Good indoor air quality can also help with allergies and odor. And for those living in communities impacted by wildfires, purifying the air inside can keep you safe from adverse health effects.
If you can’t afford to shell out over a hundred dollars for a shiny new air purifier, you’ll find a friend in charcoal. Activated charcoal is odorless and can absorb toxins, odors, and allergens from the atmosphere. You can buy air purifying charcoal bags online for under $10, and they even last up to two years.
The cool down
We see you Sahaj Kohli, Alison Chou, Amber Dee, Alfiee Breland-Noble, Melody Li, Claudia Morales, and Jenny Wang, who are making therapy less white and sharing their mental health insights to communities of color on Instagram.
Acknowledging our gratitude for organizations like the Emergency Nurses Association as well as nurses Amie Varley and Sara Fung’s “The Gritty Nurse Podcast” for talking about and providing support around mental health for nurses.
We can all learn something from this fawn learning how to be gentle with a rabbit.
Kendal Toole! Thank you to the Peloton instructor for sharing her struggles with depression.
Go, Shunan Teng! A tea educator who just shared a traditional Chinese ritual for brewing tea and how it can keep us mindful and grounded.
We love “Plant Kween” Christopher Griffin showing us how to grow our own peanut plant!
We want to recognize LaTasha Murray and Tyreene Jeter who are working to ease their communities’ vaccine anxieties.
Is someone in your community stepping up and showing up in a way deserving of acknowledgement? Have a friend or loved one who impressed you with an act of self-care? We want to hear about them! And they might be featured in next issue’s cool down.