Walking Off Heartbreak on America's New Sacred Trail

Sacred paths the world over help hikers discover deeper truths about the world and themselves. But what truly makes a path transformative? Elisabeth Kwak-Hefferan treks a new 170-mile loop in Montana in search of the pilgrimage she needs. DAY 4, MILE 39 This is not what I was expecting. Twelve miles into a 19-mile day, I’m edging along a field full of scratchy brush and cow pies. It’s hot and dusty, there’s no shade, and I’m nursing blisters on both heels. I had heard wonderful stories about Montana’s Sacred Door Trail. Grand vistas, sparkling lakes, animals everywhere. But this? This sucks. I plod along, yanking too hard on my pack straps in a futile attempt to lighten the weight on my back

Can Yoga and Meditation Change Your Genes?

Yoga and meditation may do more than just help you feel relaxed in the moment. A new scientific review suggests that these and other mindfulness exercises can actually reverse stress-related changes in genes linked to poor health and depression. In the new paper, published in Frontiers in Immunology, British researchers analyzed the findings from 18 previously published studies—involving a total of 846 people—on the biological effects of meditation, yoga, breathing exercises, Qi gong and Tai Chi. Together, the authors say, the studies show that these mind-body exercises appear to suppress the expression of genes and genetic pathways that promote inflammation. Inflammation can temporarily boo

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