Five bizarre things that may be good for you

Barefoot running, vibrating exercise platforms, tongue scraping - goofy gimmicks or good for you? An expert weighs in.

On February 26, writer Chistropher Wanjek, author of books Bad Medicine and Food at Work, reported on health and news website LiveScience five wacky trends that may actually have good health benefits, starting with the mildly freaky to the truly out of the ordinary.

Vibrating exercise platforms - Perhaps you've spotted these at your gym or spa? The idea is to stand on a vibrating platform for a few minutes before stepping off and performing your exercise, which the vibration claims to help you perform better and faster. While research at this time is scant, LiveScience reports that the machines hold some promise to help muscles heal faster and build bone density in older people with osteoporosis.

Tongue scraping - An ancient Indian medicine technique, tongue scraping requires a special cleaning device and several minutes of gag-inducing scraping. But it can help cure bad breath and may reduce your chances of developing gum diseases and even colds.

Barefoot running - As long as you don't step on any broken glass, barefoot running may be better for your shins, knees, hips and back than your pricey trainers. A study published last year in the journal Nature reported that running in trainers can send a shock up your legs that is virtually non-existent when running barefoot.

Parasite therapies - Curing allergies by ingesting parasites? Some researchers are claiming that the lack of parasites such as hookworm in industrialized countries may be contributing to the soaring rates of allergies. But before you swallow that tasy hookworm, perhaps it's better to let the scientists explore how these creatures play a part in the human immune system.

Fecal transplants - In the world of gross-out science, doctors are looking into fecal transplants - "in which doctors inject several teaspoons of a sample of fresh feces into a person's gut via a tube in the nose (yes, teaspoons)," states the article - as a cure for diarrhea-causing bacterial diseases, and even as a possible treatment for Parkinson's disease and diabetes.

Read more here: http://www.livescience.com/12984-5-wacky-good-health.html

To watch a video on barefoot running: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7jrnj-7YKZE&feature

 

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Ashdown Group: Front-End UI Application Developer

    £30000 - £40000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Front-End UI Application ...

    Recruitment Genius: Digital Account Executive

    £18000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They work with major vehicle ma...

    Recruitment Genius: Service Engineers - Doncaster / Hull

    £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Domestic Service Only Engineers are requ...

    Recruitment Genius: Employability / Recruitment Adviser

    £23600 - £27500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Employability Service withi...

    Day In a Page

    Where the spooks get their coffee fix: The busiest Starbucks in the US is also the most secretive

    The secret CIA Starbucks

    The coffee shop is deep inside the agency's forested Virginia compound
    Revealed: How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Loch Ness Monster 'sighting'

    How the Establishment closed ranks over fallout from Nessie 'sighting'

    The Natural History Museum's chief scientist was dismissed for declaring he had found the monster
    One million Britons using food banks, according to Trussell Trust

    One million Britons using food banks

    Huge surge in number of families dependent on emergency food aid
    Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths 2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

    2,500 years of history in 3,000 amazing objects

    Excavation at Italian cafe to fix rising damp unearths trove
    The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey, 25 years on

    The Hubble Space Telescope's amazing journey 25 years on

    The space telescope was seen as a costly flop on its first release
    Did Conservative peer Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

    Did Lord Ashcroft quit the House of Lords to become a non-dom?

    A document seen by The Independent shows that a week after he resigned from the Lords he sold 350,000 shares in an American company - netting him $11.2m
    Apple's ethnic emojis are being used to make racist comments on social media

    Ethnic emojis used in racist comments

    They were intended to promote harmony, but have achieved the opposite
    Sir Kenneth Branagh interview: 'My bones are in the theatre'

    Sir Kenneth Branagh: 'My bones are in the theatre'

    The actor-turned-director’s new company will stage five plays from October – including works by Shakespeare and John Osborne
    The sloth is now the face (and furry body) of three big advertising campaigns

    The sloth is the face of three ad campaigns

    Priya Elan discovers why slow and sleepy wins the race for brands in need of a new image
    How to run a restaurant: As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food

    How to run a restaurant

    As two newbies discovered, there's more to it than good food
    Record Store Day: Remembering an era when buying and selling discs were labours of love

    Record Store Day: The vinyl countdown

    For Lois Pryce, working in a record shop was a dream job - until the bean counters ruined it
    Usher, Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert as part of the Global Poverty Project

    Mary J Blige and Will.i.am to give free concert

    The concert in Washington is part of the Global Citizen project, which aims to encourage young people to donate to charity
    10 best tote bags

    Accessorise with a stylish shopper this spring: 10 best tote bags

    We find carriers with room for all your essentials (and a bit more)
    Paul Scholes column: I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England

    Paul Scholes column

    I hear Manchester City are closing on Pep Guardiola for next summer – but I'd also love to see Jürgen Klopp managing in England
    Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

    Jessica Ennis-Hill: 'I just want to give it my best shot'

    The heptathlete has gone from the toast of the nation to being a sleep-deprived mum - but she’s ready to compete again. She just doesn't know how well she'll do...