If you know firsthand the discomfort of sharp breast pain, you are not alone. Many women in their 30’s and 40’s experience the same thing. And we’re not talking about a little soreness here. I am referring to a sharp shooting ache that often lingers for some time.

While it can be unnerving, rest assured your discomfort most likely isn’t due to breast cancer. As long as the pain comes and goes with your cycle then it likely isn’t serious.

Some of the most common symptoms of breast cancer include:

· Ongoing breast pain that doesn’t go away

· Nipple discharge

· Changes in the color of your breast skin or nipples

· Swelling of the breast

· Inversion of the nipple

If you experience any of those symptoms, you should go see your doctor pronto.

But if you don’t have any of those symptoms and breast cancer isn’t the cause of your sharp breast pain, then what is?

Well, it could be a number of things really. Hormone fluctuations and fibrocystic breasts are the most common reasons for breast pain. And depending on your age, perimenopause may be the cause of those hormone changes.

Many women are quick to dismiss the idea that they are perimenopausal. Especially if they have not yet even reached their 40’s.

But the reality is, perimenopause can last anywhere from 1 to 15 years! Some women experience symptoms as early as their 20’s. With all the toxins that we are exposed to on a daily basis, it has become more common than ever to become perimenopausal at a younger age. These toxins, or xenohormones as they are called, disrupt our hormones and trigger perimenopause symptoms.

Xenohormones mimic your own natural estrogen and increase levels in your body. That elevated estrogen pushes down progesterone levels, creating an imbalance. The resulting condition is called estrogen dominance and it can occur even if you have waning estrogen levels.

Trust me, you don’t want to be estrogen dominant. Besides just causing sharp breast pain, it can also trigger:

· Infertility

· Insomnia

· Brain Fog

· Depression

· Low Libido


· Hair Loss

· Polycystic Ovaries

· Uterine Fibroids

· Mood Swings

· Cervical Dysplasia

· Irritability

And that’s just the beginning. The list for estrogen dominance symptoms is extensive. In extreme cases, it can even lead to cancer.

So if you suspect you may be suffering from estrogen dominance, then you’ll definitely want to take action now to balance out your hormones and get your health back on track.

The good news is that you don’t have to resort to synthetic hormones to treat estrogen dominance. You can balance out your hormones just by eating the right foods, taking good quality supplements, exercising and managing your stress.


It is often believed that ovulatory disorders are the most common reasons for difficulty faced by women in conceiving. 30% of female infertility cases happen on account of ovulatory disorders. Common problems pertaining to ovulation are hormonal problems like inability to produce normal follicles which, in turn, causes failure of producing mature eggs, malfunctioning of the hypothalamus, and malfunctioning of the pituitary glands.

Unruptured follicle syndrome, scarred ovaries, and premature menopause are other causes of poor ovulation. Turning to natural fertility cure with ayurvedic treatment for ovulation is a potential way of therapeutic healing from infertility issues.

Ayurvedic View on Female Infertility

Amidst, the mad rush of the modern lifestyle conceiving has become a major problem among majority couples. Besides seeking conventional treatment it is very important to resort to alternative courses of treatment like ayurvedic treatment for pregnancy. Ayurveda regards the lack of nutrition in the reproductive tissue; Shukra Dhatu as the prime reason for infertility in women. This mainly happens on account of the presence of toxins in the body and poor digestion. Some other causes of infertility are anxiety, depression, and insomnia etc. Ayurvedic doctors often prescribe the use of dried banyan tree bark powder mixed with sugar to treat infertility issues; this is a trusted solution for ayurvedic medicine for blocked fallopian tubes.

Improved Fertility with Ayurvedic Treatment for Blocked Fallopian Tubes

20% of infertility cases in women occur on account of the blocked fallopian tube problem. An obstruction in the fallopian tube hinders the egg from travelling down to the tube. It also prevents the sperm from reaching out to the egg which causes problems in fertilization. In order to reduce inflammation in the fallopian tube and promote blood circulation, resort to herbs. The following herbs are ideal for facilitating Ayurvedic treatment for blocked fallopian tubes- ginseng, goldenseal, dong quai, red clover, chamomile, calendula etc.

These herbs can kill any form of bacteria, like yeast which prevents fertility. Dong Quai capsule is a vital ayurvedic medicine for blocked fallopian tubes. It effectively reduces tissue congestion, muscle cramps, and improves circulation to the reproductive organs. Consider taking a fertility massage it helps in breaking up of scar tissues and improves blood circulation around the tubes. Massaging almond, lavender, or olive oil over the pubic bone is an effective natural cure.

Conceive naturally with ayurvedic Treatment for Pregnancy

Pregnancy and child birth is undeniably the most rejuvenating experience in the life of a woman. Most ayurvedic medicine for blocked fallopian tubes contains herb components. Ayurveda aims at keeping the body healthy through the use of natural remedies by regulating ayurvedic treatment for ovulation. Herbs like, Stinging nettle nourishes the uterus and strengthens the kidney and adrenal gland, Black cohosh is an antispasmodic which reduces period cramps and stimulates the ovaries.

The herb Vitex- Agnus Cactus increases the progesterone level and regulates anovulation, amenorrhea, and premenstrual stress. Wild Yam is generally considered to be one of the best fertility herbs for twins and it largely boosts the progesterone count in women. Herbs effectively regulate the hormone and nourish the body in order to conceive better.

Combat Pregnancy Issues with Ayurvedic Treatment for Infertility In Females

Besides ovulation disorder, other factors causing infertility in women are as follows- uterine fibroids, endocrine disorders, and anatomical defects in the uterus. Some vital herbs facilitating ayurvedic treatment for pregnancy are as follows-

  • Shatavari– Asparagusracemosus or Shatavari is a spinous under-shrub which bears numerous tuberous roots. This herb is often used to nourish the ovum and increases fertility.
  • Lodhra- This is an evergreen tree which increases the level of follicular stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone. It also has several anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Ashoka- This too is a small evergreen tree, the barks of this tree bears a stimulating effect on the endometrium and ovarian tissue. Ashoka is a power herb for ayurvedic treatment for ovulation.
  • Kumari- Also known as Aloe barbadensis is a short-stem perennial plant. The consumption of this herb leads to the in-vitro production of oestradiol and progesterone.

Power of Ayurveda in Curing InfertilityAyurveda as a form of alternative cure dates back to over several thousand years even before modern medicine existed. Ayurveda specialists aim at healing the whole body naturally without any medical interference. Some quick tips are as follows-

  • Enhance the presence of Shukradhatu in the body with foods like pineapple which is healthy for ovum. Consuming quinoa also increases estrogenic activity in the body.
  • Make use of the medicated oil basti via the rectum. It eliminates the doshas from the rectum and improves ovum quality.
  • Shirodhara therapy is a special rhythmic movement of the medicated oils on the forehead. It stimulates the hypothalamus and pituitary glands which leads to adequate hormone secretion.
  • Phala Gritam is a great ayurvedic medicine which helps treat female infertility. When consumed with milk in the form of liquefied butter it cures functional problems pertaining to conceiving.

Be it ayurvedic treatment for blocked fallopian tubes or ayurvedic treatment for infertility in the female, Ayurveda aims at adopting a holistic approach towards a cure. Ayurvedic medicines essentially have their roots in herbs and natural substances which serve as an alternate source of cure bearing no- critical side-effects on the body.

Ath Ayurdhamah is dedicated to restoring and maintaining the lost balance between physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health, through the understanding and practice of age-old systems of Ayurveda and Yoga. Our strength lies in understanding the body and its performance at constitutional level and that is what we apply to our Remedies.


So what is the average age of perimenopause?

Most professionals would answer around 45. But in reality you can start experiencing symptoms in your late thirties. For some women, it can come much sooner and they notice hormone changes as early as their twenties.

The length of time can also vary. Some women are perimenopausal for a mere 4 months. Others for a whopping 10-15 years.

So if you are one of those women in their late 30’s or early 40’s and are plagued by severe premenopausal symptoms, rest assured you are not alone.

More and more women experience health issues due to hormonal imbalance. And at a younger age than ever before.

Why is that?

For a number of reasons, really. One cause is our environment. Us humans are now exposed to more toxins than ever before in history. These toxins have the ability to disrupt our entire endocrine system, the group of glands responsible for producing our hormones.

Xenohormone toxins mimic our own naturally produced estrogen in our body. The result is overly high levels in the body. And while elevated estrogen levels may not seem like such a bad thing as we near menopause, it actually can create havoc in your body.

Our hormones, and the glands that produce them, depend on each other to function well. If one increases, another becomes either elevated or depleted in response.

Estrogen is most closely linked to the hormones progesterone and cortisol. When estrogen goes up, progesterone declines. If cortisol becomes elevated, so does estrogen, pushing down progesterone levels even more.

This condition is called estrogen dominance and it can cause severe perimenopause symptoms like infertility, fatigue, brain fog, fibroids, cysts and weight gain to name a few. It can even lead to certain female cancers.

And it’s not just middle-aged women who suffer from estrogen dominance. Women as young as 25 or 30 are also affected. Even young girls show signs of this condition and are getting their periods as young as 9 or 10 years old as a result.

Estrogen dominance has become a global epidemic and it can literally rob you of your youth. Not only does it cause conditions like infertility in younger women, it also makes perimenopause a living hell for those entering middle age. For many, it causes them to experience symptoms well before the average age of perimenopause.

The biggest culprits are toxins and stress. Unfortunately, modern life has only become increasingly stressful. We also continue to be exposed to more and more toxins daily. As a result we can only expect estrogen dominance to be more prevalent in the years to come.

Never fear. The condition is reversible. With exercise, the right diet, vitamins and stress management, you can alleviate symptoms and enjoy vibrant health, into your menopause years and beyond.


What if I told you that conventional HRT was completely unnecessary and that you don’t have to endure the typical hormone replacement therapy side effects that come with these drugs if you don’t want to.

In fact, almost everyone can avoid taking prescription medications if they choose. No matter what their age.

Yes, it’s true.

Big Pharma would have you believe otherwise, of course.

If you have a family history of heart disease then you’ll definitely need to go on statins. If you have high blood pressure, you’ll have to take meds for that.

At one time, they even insisted that all women would end up on synthetic HRT at some point during their menopause years. That is, until, they realized it raised a woman’s risk of developing heart disease and breast cancer. Now they use a little more caution when prescribing synthetic hormones…

Or at least some doctors do.

The list of hormone replacement therapy side effects is considerable. Subject your body to synthetic HRT drugs such as Permarin, Provera or Estrogen Therapy, and you run the risk of developing:

• Osteoporosis

• Stroke

• Heart Disease

• Cancer

• Anxiety

• Infertility

• Blood Clotting

• Increased Insulin Levels

• Headaches

• Weight Gain

• Depression

• Cervical Dysplasia

• High Blood Pressure

• Vaginal Bleeding

• Digestive Issues

• Breast Tenderness

• Gallbladder Disease

One year after millions of women quit HRT, breast cancer rates fell by 7 percent.

The good news is, that unlike the previous conventional wisdom, HRT isn’t inevitable for every menopausal woman. Severe perimenopause symptoms are treatable with natural solutions alone. You can boost your health and avoid heart disease, cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure and most chronic illnesses by making simple yet crucial changes to your diet and lifestyle and by reducing exposure to toxins in our environment.

Yes, YOU have absolute control over your health.

Of course Big Pharma would have you believe otherwise. They want you to think you are powerless so you come clamoring for their drugs.

And empty out your pocketbook in the process.

These drugs may ease your symptoms, sure. But you won’t feel really good when you’re on them. Oftentimes when women do go on HRT, they feel a lot better at first, but their symptoms soon return. Sometimes even worse than ever.

Pharmaceutical drugs just mask symptoms. They fail to boost health, focus and wellbeing. Only you can do that by putting the right foods and supplements into your body, reducing toxin exposure and managing your stress. Take those four steps right now and you’ll notice a big improvement in how you look and feel.

Ultimately, you have a choice to make: buy into Big Pharma’s lies and subject your body to the roller coaster that is HRT or take control over your own health.

Sure, it’s easier to pop a pill. But that pill will only give you moderate relief at best. And it may make you sicker down the line.

The truth is, there is no effective quick fix. True, vibrant health won’t be found in a bottle. Getting your hormones back on track and reducing symptoms will require some commitment on your part. But it is doable. You would be surprised by how good you feel after just 30 days of eating right, exercising and managing your stress.

Don’t know how to get started on the path to recovery? My eBook, “Feel Like YOU Again,” explains all the ways you can naturally ease perimenopause symptoms, all on your own and avoid subjecting your body to synthetic HRT. I give you practical, effective solutions to increased health, energy and wellbeing during your perimenopausal years and beyond.


Vaginal dryness is an uncomfortable, yet common condition affecting millions of women. You do not have to be menopausal to experience dryness. Women who are “peri-menopausal” also experience dryness in the vaginal area.

What is it? It is a condition in which the natural lubrication system of the vaginal is no longer working properly leaving the vaginal area dry, itchy, burning, and pain with intercourse. It is often most caused by a hormonal imbalance. Typically, it is a lack of estrogen that causes not only dryness, but in more extreme or long term cases, vaginal atrophy. Vaginal atrophy or Atrophic vaginitis also causes changes to the cells of the vaginal lining, causing them to be more thin and fragile resulting in tearing and bleeding. There are other causes for vaginal dryness besides hormones such as dehydration, stress, medication side effects such as birth control, antihistamines, and autoimmune conditions such as Sjogren’s syndrome.

When you have vaginal dryness you are more susceptible to urinary tract infections due to the lack of protection that the lubrication provides. The natural lubrication of the vagina helps to keep bad bacteria out and without it the normal flora of the vagina can become imbalanced leading to more frequent urinary tract infections. However, many women experiencing vaginal dryness have all the symptoms of a UTI (urinary tract infection) without any bacteria present. Symptoms such as increased urgency, frequency, burning and itching with urination can all be due to the dryness of the vagina. This makes things pretty uncomfortable down there.

What can you do about it? Many women utilize hormone replacement therapy either systemically or vaginally. There are many options for hormones replacement including natural bio-identical hormones to traditional hormone replacement therapies. Estrogen is the most common hormone to help vaginal dryness. There are products that are made just for the vagina and vaginal dryness. Talk to your doctor about which one would be right for you.

Other things to consider are hydration levels, make sure you are hydrating and drinking enough water that your urine is light straw colored to clear. Minimize stress as stress affects many systems of our body including hormones and can lead to vaginal dryness or exacerbate it. Take a look at your medications to see if any of those could be contributing to dryness. In all cases consulting your Naturopathic doctor can provide you with the most comprehensive and individualized treatment plan for your individual situation.

There is no doubt that receiving a massage is good for your mind body and soul. If it’s such an important part of living a healthy lifestyle, why don’t we all do it more often?
Massage is one of the oldest natural therapies. It contributes to physical and emotional health and to practical exercises, can stimulate and relax muscles, improve circulation and promote the healing of a wide variety of suffering. Massage is easy to achieve.
Relaxation massage is all about relaxing. It focuses on giving the client time to recover from the stresses of daily life. When you experience relaxation massage, you can expect a treatment that involves:
Long smooth gliding strokes that are rhythmic and flowing
Pressure that is deeply relaxing, but not painful
A treatment that is designed to soothe and relax you, not to relieve chronic pain or other underlying ailments.
A therapist who also takes the massage environment into account – look for soothing music, warm luxurious towels, and occasionally the use of essential oils to enhance both the environment and the effects of the massage
As with any kind of massage, the benefits of a relaxation massage can last for several days after your treatment.

Relaxation massage – like other forms of massage – can offer the following benefits:
Lowering blood pressure – at least for a while
Improvements to peripheral circulation
Improvements to skin tone and appearance
Improvements to gastrointestinal motility (bowel movements will become more regular)
Some reduction in muscle tension including the relief of muscle tension headaches
Improvements to any stress-related symptoms. This can include providing a gentle boost to the immune system if you undergo regular treatments.

There are different types of body massage and you are wellcome to try them all, or the one that is the best for you:

Swedish Massage Therapy

Swedish massage is virtually synonymous with massage therapy. Swedish massage is based on the Western concepts of anatomy and physiology, compared to the energy-centric style more common in Asian forms of massage. Using lotion or oil, massage therapists typically begin with broad general strokes and then transition to specific strokes to address problem areas. As the best-known type of bodywork performed today, one of the primary goals of the Swedish massage technique is to relax the entire body. This is accomplished by rubbing the muscles with long gliding strokes in the direction of blood returning to the heart. But Swedish massage therapy goes beyond relaxation. Swedish massage is exceptionally beneficial for increasing the level of oxygen in the blood, decreasing muscle toxins, improving circulation and flexibility while easing tension. Additional Swedish massage techniques include circular pressure applied by the hands and palms, firm kneading, percussion-like tapping, bending and stretching. Before and during your Swedish massage session, communication is encouraged with your professional massage therapist so that your massage is customized to your specific needs.

Aromatherapy Massage

An aromatherapy massage is a Swedish massage with scented plant oils (known as essential oils) added to the massage oil. Extracted from flowers and other plant parts, essential oils offer a pleasing scent and are believed to have healing properties. Lavender and rose, for instance, are known to promote relaxation. Although oils may be selected to address specific needs, the therapist typically uses pre-blended oils to relax, energize, or uplift. Your massage therapist will usually decide which essential oils to use, but you can let them know if you have a preference. Essential oils are diluted before being applied to the skin. During the massage, you’ll be given a full-body massage while inhaling essential oils through a diffuser and absorbing them through your skin. Sometimes an aromatherapy massage will only focus on your back, shoulders, and head. You won’t wear any clothing other than underwear, which is optional.

Hot Stone Massage

As the name implies, hot stone massage uses warm stones. The therapist places heated, smooth stones on specific points on the body and also holds the warm stones while giving the massage. The stones are usually basalt (a volcanic rock that retains heat well). The warmth of the stones can be relaxing and can loosen tight muscles so that the therapist can reach areas of muscle tension quickly. Stones used for the heat massage are river-smoothed stones that are heavy enough to healing pressure but light enough to avoid discomfort. Some believe that the stones are symbolic of the forces of nature as they are smoothed and molded by the gentle but influential power of the river. The smoother the stone, the more energy it is believed to hold. The stone massage is performed by placing heated or cooled stones along the client’s back, specifically upon the meridians seen in acupressure techniques. The stones then help the body retain their healing heat which in turn enter the muscles and melt away stress. In addition to river stones, some massage therapists use a tool called a body rock. The body rock is carved from stone or found and smoothed for comfort. It helps to enhance the therapist’s strength during the massage and helps focus the pressure being applied to the body. Many therapists use this tool directly on the skin but it can also be paired with massage oil or even used over the client’s clothes.

Thai Massage

Thai Massage is new to modern spas, but it is actually an ancient form of massage thought to have been developed by Buddhist monks in Thailand 2,500 years ago. It uses passive stretching and gentle pressure along the body’s energy lines to increase flexibility, relieve muscle and joint tension and balance the body’s energy systems. A unique blend of assisted yoga, passive stretching, and pressing massage movements, Thai massage is more energizing than other forms of massage. It’s a little bit like yoga without doing the work, as the therapist moves and stretches you in a sequence of postures, usually on a mat on the floor.This is why it is sometimes called “lazy man’s yoga”. Thai massage can be both relaxing and energizing, so it is a good choice if you want to be active after your massage.
The therapist uses a variety of different sequences of techniques on clients, who are either laying face up, laying face down, seated, or on their side.

Massage therapy is a treatment approach which is growing in demand and popularity. It was once considered an alternative or fringe approach, but it is now becoming much more mainstream. More importantly, now that massage therapy is considered a mainstream treatment option, many insurance companies provide coverage for treatment sessions. This form of therapy involves hands-on techniques to increase circulation, relieve tension, reduce stress, relieve anxiety, improve sleep, and promote relaxation throughout the entire body, as well as many other benefits.
The body’s soft tissue areas include the muscles, tendons, connective tissue, etc. If someone is tense and in need of a release, or they have been injured and have extensive muscle and/or nerve tissue damage that plagues their body, massage therapy might be worth exploring. Here are some benefits of massage therapy.


Benefifts of massage:

1. It Is Relaxing – When the body is tense and under stress, it produces unhealthy levels of the well-known stress hormone, cortisol, which can contribute to weight gain, sleeplessness, digestive problems, and headaches. Massage therapy has been shown to decrease cortisol levels in the body. This enables the body to enter a recovery mode. Moreover, this form of therapy also triggers lasting feelings of relaxation, improved mood, and reduced stress levels.

2. It Reduces Stress – Not only can massage therapy help with stress relief, but regular massage sessions over a prolonged period of time can boost energy levels, reduce pain, and stimulate individuals on physical as well as emotional levels.

3. It Can Help Lower Blood Pressure – Regular massage therapy sessions have been found to reduce blood pressure levels. In fact, some long-term studies have shown that a consistent massage program can reduce both systolic (upper number) and diastolic (lower number) blood pressure. Moreover, it can also reduce cortisol levels within the body. Furthermore, consistent massage sessions can also reduce trigger sources for anxiety, hostility, tension, and depression. In turn, lower blood pressure levels can also reduce
the risk of heart attack, stroke, and/or kidney failure, as well as many other health issues.

4. It Promotes Muscle Relaxation – The purpose of massage therapy is to target the source of the body’s pain via eliminating tense muscles, increasing flexibility, and providing relaxation to the affected muscles as well as the body as a whole. Massage also promotes circulation to the affected or injured muscles, which increases nutrients and oxygen to the damaged tissues. In turn, this increased activity to the affected sites
reduces stiffness and edema (swelling) in the muscles and joints, as well as increases flexibility to help reduce pain. Moreover, this form of therapy also releases endorphins (pain-killing hormones), which boost the dopamine and serotonin levels in the body. These hormones assist the body in many ways–physically as well as emotionally. Case in point, they promote healing, pain management, and feelings of euphoria, as well as help to calm the nerves.

5. It Can Help Improve Circulation – The long-term benefits of massage therapy are not to be underestimated. Improved circulation is part of a snowball effect that occurs in the body as a result of receiving regular therapy on a consistent basis. This is because proper circulation brings damaged, stiff, and tense muscles the rich blood supply they need to promote healing. Moreover, massage also promotes improved circulation via the use of hands-on pressure, which moves the blood through the damaged and congested areas of the body. In turn, the release of this same pressure causes new blood to flow into tissues. Furthermore, the squeezing, twisting, and pulling action of the massage technique also removes lactic acid from the muscle tissues. As a result, this action improves the lymph fluid circulation, which carries metabolic waste products away from internal organs and muscles. In turn, this results in lower blood pressure levels and improved overall body function.

6. It Can Help Improve Posture – Many Americans experience back, neck, and muscle pain from a variety of sources. However, the primary cause of this pain results from poor posture. In fact, chronic back pain, massage is the number one reason for missed work days and second most common cause of disability, is often the result of incorrect or poor posture while standing and/or sitting. Moreover, being overweight, poor posture, and repetitive or overuse movements can also contribute to the strain on the back and other
potential problem areas. As a result, the added strain often causes spasms, pain, and tense muscles in the hips, glutes, back, neck, and legs. Massage therapy can help get the body back into proper alignment. In fact, improving one’s posture can be one of the most beneficial and relaxing aspects of massage therapy. Massage allows the body to relax and loosen the muscles made tense and sore via bad posture. In turn, this allows the body to position itself in its organic and pain-free posture. As part of a consistent massage therapy program, the body’s muscles are loosened and relaxed. Moreover, the joints have greater freedom, flexibility, range of motion, and pressure points are relieved. As a result,
the body is able to position itself in an organic and healthy posture. In short, massage therapy helps to correct the positions and movements developed over time as a reaction to pain.

7. It Can Help Strengthen the Body’s Immune System – Regular massage sessions provide many benefits to the human body. It is a well-known fact that individuals who experience high levels of stress are more vulnerable to illness and injury. When stress is combined with sleep disturbances and poor nutrition, the impact is directed at the body’s immune system. Its ability to naturally protect itself against infections, pathogens, and bacteria is greatly reduced. Some might wonder how massage therapy benefits the immune system. Studies have indicated that regular massage sessions not only help reduce stress, but can also boost the immune system’s cytotoxic capacity (activity level of the body’s natural “killer cells”) and enhances the body’s ability to deliver nourishment. Moreover, massage therapy can be a great addition to any exercise program. Much like regular exercise can keep the body fine-tuned, regular massage therapy can help keep the immune system strong and resilient.

Once considered an alternative or fringe approach, massage therapy is now much more mainstream and growing in popularity. More importantly, now that massage therapy is considered a mainstream treatment option, many insurance companies provide coverage for treatment sessions. This form of therapy involves hands-on techniques to increase
circulation, relieve tension, reduce stress, relieve anxiety, improve sleep, and promote relaxation throughout the entire body, as well as many other benefits.