Health & Wellness
We often wonder what our lives would be like without meditation or mindfulness. We were talking with our partner, neuroscientist and yogi Brian Jones, about this recently, who said, “With all the mass overstimulation and continuously heightened levels of stress, it’s easy to see why we’re all going crazy. The modern world demands so much of our attention that we forget who we truly are in our deepest sense.”
We’re sure you know what we mean: The demands and busyness of life can have a toll on anyone. So what to do? How to live in this world with sanity and ease? The wise yogis said that happiness is our birthright, but where is this happiness found?
What, out of all the things we can get in this whole world, will give us the most happiness, joy, peace of mind, self-friendship, clarity, insight, presence, is totally free but invariably ignored? Yes, you got it, it’s meditation — the most invaluable gift you could ever give yourself! We look everywhere for peace and spend a fortune thinking something will give us happiness while it is, and always will be, inside us. Not only that, but whatever we get we can lose, but what’s inside of us we have always! How outrageous!
Actor Ed Begley, Jr., from our award-winning book Be The Change, points out that:
If stuff made you happy, there would be nothing but happy people living in Bel Air and unhappy people living in Fiji where they have nothing, but I have been to Fiji and there are plenty of happy people there. I have never seen a hearse with a luggage rack on top. We have got to get away from stuff and appreciate what is here.
Meditation is in the news. Any self-respecting business uses meditation and mindfulness to combat stress, major newspapers and magazines carry stories on the benefits of meditation with tips from famous film stars, and cross-legged yogis and Buddhist monks can be seen in adverts for everything from computers and credit cards to insurance.
Respected Buddhist meditation teacher Mingyur Rinpoche asks:
Who makes problems? We humans. And who is the controller of the human? The mind. And how to control the human mind? Through meditation. If you can control the pilot, then the pilot can control the plane.
Mindfulness is being aware of whatever arises in your mind and body, sensations, feelings and thoughts. It’s not about trying to change anything but non-judgmentally and gently accepting it as it is. However, anyone first coming to meditation can be met with a plethora of advice and techniques that may baffle or confuse: Where to go? What to do? Which is best? How to start? How to chose between TM, mantra recitation, kundalini, vipassana, insight, witness, breath awareness, shamata, visualization, MBSR, metta, and more?
The best way is to try them and see what works for you — we’re all different! It’s important to remember that a technique is only a way to something, it’s not the something itself. True meditation is spontaneous, natural, arising from within, while the technique is simply the learnt method that helps us have that experience. All techniques are designed to help calm the mind, bring our attention inward, and focus in just this present moment so that the experience of meditation occurs naturally.
Author and meditation teacher Sylvia Boorstein emphasizes that:
The point of meditation is to keep the mind free of confusion. Meditation, past calming our nerves, past being good for our blood pressure, past allowing us to work out our own internal psychological dramas, which it does, past helping us to get along with our kin and our community, is a way of really deeply seeing the truth that the only way to ameliorate our own suffering and the suffering of the world is to keep our minds clear.
The equation, therefore, is simple: The more meditation becomes a part of your life, the more you change and evolve; the more you change and evolve, the more society is transformed and the world moves into a wiser and more loving place to be. And all you have to do for this chain of events to occur is to sit still!
Start right now, where you are sitting as you read this. Do this for just 3-5 minutes.
Become aware of your body. Scan your body from head to toes, acknowledging how it feels, and where there is tension or ease.
Become aware of your feelings, thoughts, and any sensations.
Become aware of your breathing, and just watch your breath as it enters and leaves for a few moments.
Now take a deep breath and let it go.
How has meditation changed your life? Do comment below. You can receive notice of our blogs by checking Become a Fan at the top.
By Marcus Williams
Other than just being delicious and great for giving you an energy boost, coffee may have some health benefits, too!
Which conditions may coffee help prevent?
The more you drink coffee, the less depressed you’ll be? That’s what one study found, which followed 50,000 women between the ages of 35 and 50. Those who drank two to three cups per day were 15 percent less likely to develop symptoms of depression; however, the reason is unclear.
2. Liver Cancer
One University of Minnesota study found that high coffee intake – more than three cups per day – significantly decreased risk of hepatocellular carcinoma, the most common type of liver cancer. Additionally, it’s been found in several studies that a higher consumption of coffee is usually associated with a lower risk of liver cancer.
Death isn’t really a disease, but coffee may help you live longer. A study of 400,000 Americans between the ages of 50 and 71 found that those who drank two to three cups per day were 10 to 15 percent less likely to die in the next 13 years. Some attribute this to coffee’s antioxidants, which protect the body from free radicals.
Coffee: The Negatives
The side effects of drinking coffee can include: Headaches, insomnia, heartburn, and palpitations. Also, it’s very important to limit the amount of cream and sugar you add to your coffee to help avoid other conditions, including obesity.
Experts also stress that it’s very important to understand that coffee is not a cure, and that drinking it does not negate the need for you to eat healthy, exercise, stress less and see your doctor regularly.
Honey has a long medicinal history dating back to the wound-dressing of ancient Egyptians. Today, many people swarm to honey for its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. And holistic practitioners consider it one of nature’s best all-around remedies.
Here is what researchers are learning about honey’s health benefits:
Manuka honey is sometimes used to treat chronic leg ulcers and pressure sores. Manuka honey is made in New Zealand from the nectar of Leptospermum scoparium. It’s the basis of Medihoney, which the FDA approved in 2007 for use in treating wounds and skin ulcers. It works very well to stimulate healing. It is Manuka honey’s pH content, which leans toward acidic, that helps the healing process. It is soothing and feels good to the wound.
The Common Cold
Buckwheat honey-based syrup can be used to ease the early symptoms of a cold. It calms inflamed membranes and eases a cough — the latter claim supported by a few studies. In a study that involved 139 children, honey beat out dextromethorphan (a cough suppressant) and diphenhydramine (an antihistamine) in easing nighttime cough in children and improving their sleep. Another study involving 105 children found that buckwheat honey trumped dextromethorphan in suppressing nighttime coughs.
If you’re suffering from a cold or something going on in the throat or upper airways, getting on board with honey syrup will help fight infection and soothe membranes. Buckwheat honey-based allergy medicine is also recommended for the same purpose.
Even if honey is natural, it is no better than ordinary white or brown sugar for dieters or people with diabetes. A tablespoon of honey, in fact, has more carbohydrates and calories than granulated white or brown sugar. ‘A sugar is a sugar’ when it comes to diabetes. I think it’s a widespread myth that honey is better for diabetes. Some patients don’t classify honey as a sugar.
Get your carbs from a cup of fresh berries or a carton of yogurt because they have about the same number of carbs as a tablespoon of honey — but less sugar. There are some minerals and vitamins and antioxidant properties in honey — the darker the honey, the higher the level of antioxidants — but with yogurt, you can also get those benefits. When you have diabetes, you have to be picky and choosy about carbs and calories.
In the laboratory, honey has been shown to hamper the growth of food-borne pathogens such as E. coli and salmonella, and to fight certain bacteria, including Staphylococcus aureus and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, both of which are common in hospitals and doctors’ offices. But whether it does the same in people hasn’t been proven.
Shop for honey and you’ll see that some are lighter, others are darker. In general, the darker the honey, the better its antibacterial and antioxidant power. Honey comes in many varieties, depending on the floral source of pollen or nectar gathered and regurgitated by the honey bee upon arrival in the hive.
Honey producers may apply to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for a grade on their product, but the score does not account for color. Rather, the honey is judged for clarity, aroma, and flavor, and the absence of sediments, such as honeycomb particles.
Never Give Honey to an Infant
Honey is natural and considered harmless for adults. But pediatricians strongly caution against feeding honey to children under 1 year old.
“Do not let babies eat honey,” states foodsafety.gov, a web site of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
That’s because of the risk of botulism. The spores of the botulism bacteria are found in dust and soil that may make their way into honey. Infants do not have a developed immune system to defend against infection.
It’s been shown very clearly that honey can give infants botulism, a paralytic disorder in which the infant must be given anti-toxins and often be placed on a respirator in an intensive care unit. But parents may feed their infants cereals that contain honey. If it’s cooked, so it’s OK—we’re talking about honey out of the bottle.
The National Honey Board, which the USDA oversees, also agrees that infants should not be given honey. “The concern for babies stems from the fact that infants lack the fully developed gastrointestinal tract of older humans,” the Board’s web site states.
When it comes to lowering your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, eating whole fruit — and notthe juice form — could do you some good, according to a new study.
Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health found an association between eating at least two servings of fruit a week and having a 23 percent lower risk of diabetes, compared with eating less than a serving of fruit a month. Blueberries, grapes and apples seemed to be especially linked with the reduced diabetes risk.
Meanwhile, people who drank one serving or more of juice a day had up to a 21 percent higher risk of diabetes.
“Our data further endorse current recommendations on increasing whole fruits, but not fruit juice, as a measure for diabetes prevention,” study researcher Isao Muraki, a research fellow in the Department of Nutrition at Harvard, said in a statement. “And our novel findings may help refine this recommendation to facilitate diabetes prevention.”
The study, published in the British Medical Journal, is based on data from 187,382 people who were part of the Nurses’ Health Study, Nurses’ Health Study II, and Health Professionals Follow-up Study. They were tracked between 1984 and 2008, a period during which 6.5 percent (or 12,198 people) developed Type 2 diabetes.
Researchers analyzed the study participants’ consumption of fruit, as well as fruit juices. The kinds of fruit analyzed included apples and pears, prunes, apricots and peaches, grapes and raisins, bananas, oranges, blueberries, strawberries and grapefruit. The kinds of fruit juice analyzed included apple, grapefruit, orange, and “other” types of fruit juice.
They found that the biggest whole fruit consumers in the study had the lowest risk of developing diabetes over the study period, while the daily juice-drinkers had a higher risk of developing the condition. However, they also found that if people swapped out three servings juice for whole fruits a week, they could lower their diabetes risk 7 percent.
Huffington post report from Harvard School of Public Health
Smiling improves your life, your health, your mood and your appearance.
Here are some Benefits of Smiling
Smiling Releases Endorphins, Serotonin and Natural Pain Alleviation
Research has shown that smiling releases endorphins, serotonin and natural pain killers. Endorphins, serotonin and pain killers help us feel good. Give yourself smile therapy.
Natural Mood Elevation
Smiling sends a message to your system that you are happy and in a good mood. When you smile you feel better. You feel happier and more positive. You feel more like doing something. You have a more positive attitude. Smiling is a mood elevator.
Smiling Relieves Stress
When you smile you feel more relaxed, positive and focused. You are more alert and aware of the present. It is like happy mindfulness stress relief. Smiling meditation.
Smiling Helps The Immune System
When you smile you are more comfortable and relaxed and your immune system functions better. Improve your happiness and health by smiling.
Smiling Lowers Blood Pressure
Smiling reduces blood pressure. If you have a blood pressure monitor take a reading. Smile for a while. Then take another reading.
Smiling Helps You To Be More Positive
Smiling creates positive feelings and a more positive attitude. This helps to improve your health and to be more positive. Here is a test. Smile. Try to think of something negative. It isn’t the same when you’re smiling. Smiling gives you a more positive outlook.
Smiling Improves Your Appearance
When you smile the muscles used lift your face making you appear younger. Smile while doing diaphragmatic breathing for a rejuvenating beauty treatment.
People Will Like You More
Smiling makes people seem more friendly, likeable, confident, approachable, neighborly, agreeable and attractive. A smiling person seems more alert, happy and optimistic.
Smiling People Seem More Like Winners
Smiling people seem more proud and confident. Smiling people are more likely to be hired, promoted, approached and liked. Smiling people seem more successful. Smile at work, meetings and appointments and make a better impression.
Smiling Makes Other People Smile
Smiling helps other people to smile and be happy. Smiling improves their moods and attitudes. Smiling makes situations more happy, peaceful and positive.
So, Smile, Smile, Smile!
The larger your waist circumference, the greater your risk for type 2 diabetes, a new study has found.
The study examined the association between waist circumference, body-mass index (BMI, a measurement of body fat based on height and weight) and type 2 diabetes.
Both waist circumference and BMI were associated independently with diabetes risk, but waist circumference was a stronger risk factor in women than in men, Claudia Langenberg, of the Institute of Metabolic Science at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge, England, and colleagues said in a news release from the Public Library of Science.
The findings, published online June 5 in the journal PLoS Medicine, suggest that measuring waist circumference in overweight people could be an effective way to prevent diabetes, because it would identify high-risk people who may benefit from counseling about lifestyle changes, the researchers said.
“Our results clearly show the value that measurement of [waist circumference] may have in identifying which people among the large population of overweight individuals are at highest risk of diabetes,” the study authors said.
About one-third of people in the United States and United Kingdom are overweight, Langenberg and colleagues noted in the news release.
Although the study showed an association between larger waist circumference and increased risk of type 2 diabetes, it did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.
Waist Size, BMI, and Diabetes Risk
About 19 million Americans have diagnosed diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association. Most have type 2. The body does not make enough of the hormone insulin or the cells don’t use it effectively.
Langenberg’s team, the InterAct Consortium, re-evaluated data on more than 28,500 people. They lived in eight European countries. They were in the EPIC (European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition) study. It looked at lifestyle and other factors, and chronic disease.
Langenberg compared about 12,400 people with type 2 diabetes with about 16,100 people without. They looked at their waist and BMI data.
Among the findings:
• Overweight women with a large waist (35-plus) and overweight men with a large waist (40-plus) had a 10-year incidence of diabetes similar to that of obese people.
• Higher waist size and higher BMI were each linked with higher diabetes risk.
• High waist size was a stronger risk factor for women than for men.
• Obese men with a large waist (40-plus) were 22 times more likely to develop diabetes than men with a low-normal BMI (18.5-22.4) and a smaller waist (less than 37 inches).
• Obese women with a large waist (35-plus) were nearly 32 times as likely to get diabetes than women of low-normal weight and a smaller waist (less than 31 inches).
By Joshunda Sanders
From Metta World Peace to Rudy Eugene, African-Americans confronting mental health challenges are often portrayed as isolated examples of crazy or deranged people rather than members of a marginalized community suffering an illness.
July is National Minority Mental Health Awareness Month, established in 2008 in honor of Bebe Moore Campbell, an acclaimed author and mental health advocate. But beyond the black blogosphere and social networking events, the dismal state of black mental health treatment and awareness hasn’t been covered by mainstream print, online and broadcast media.
Before she died at age 56 in 2006, Campbell was an advocate for mental health awareness through organizing and her writing. Her children’s novel, “Sometimes My Mommy Gets Angry,“ was given the 2003 Outstanding Media Award for Literature by the National Alliance on Mental Illness. It is about a girl who learns how to cope with her mother’s bipolar disorder.
In 2005, Campbell wrote “72 Hour Hold,” a novel focusing on an adult daughter, the onset of mental illness and challenges faced by mentally ill African-Americans in America’s health care system. The book is believed to have been inspired by the experience of her daughter, actress Maia Campbell, with mental illness.
Journalists, writers and experts cite many reasons why the mainstream media don’t cover African-American mental health responsibly or consistently. Among them are racism, lack of context about how African-Americans interact with the health care system and stigmas that remain entrenched in the black community and discourage those who struggle with depression, schizophrenia or other mental health problems from discussing them.
“Mental health in general has been a sub-beat in the mainstream media,” says journalist Amy Alexander, co-author with Dr. Alvin F. Poussaint of the 2001 book, “Lay My Burden Down: Suicide and the Mental Health Crisis among African-Americans.” Rarely do mainstream media outlets have the luxury of assigning a reporter to cover only mental health since most are now responsible for several beats simultaneously.
A prominent exception was Clifford J. Levy, now a New York Times editor. He won the + for investigative reporting, and a George Polk Award, for a three-part series exposing sometimes fatal neglect of the mentally ill in privately run adult homes regulated by New York State.
Alexander says, “It used to be that no one would write about mental health, and the way it would be covered would be piecemeal in the context of a report coming out from the Centers for Disease Control [and Prevention] or the National Institutes of Health. Or you would see a story pop up around a horrific event.”
Since Alexander’s and Poussaint’s book was published, little has changed. The bizarre case of Rudy Eugene, 31, an African-American in Miami who chewed off a homeless man’s face in May before being shot to death, made “bath salts” a buzz phrase nationwide.
Eugene took his clothes off along the MacArthur Causeway from Miami Beach before attacking Ronald Poppo, 65, in what The Miami Herald called a “ghoulish, drawn-out assault in plain view on a city sidewalk captured by a Miami Herald security camera. Eugene was shot by a police officer who found him chewing chunks off Poppo’s face.”
The head of the Miami police union publicly speculated that “bath salts,” synthetic stimulants believed to be the cause of psychotic episodes elsewhere around the country, prompted Eugene’s actions. But, according to the Miami-Dade Medical Examiner’s office, only marijuana was found in his system.
More likely, Kristen Gwynne wrote for the online magazine AlterNet, is that Eugene had a history of mental illness. “But pinning a tragedy to a drug scare is easier (and perhaps more lucrative) than explaining a non-existent safety net for the mentally ill,” she wrote. “Bath salts, the mainstream media naively believes, can be banned and eradicated. Treating mental illness is a far more complicated story.”
Other than sensationalized portraits of individuals, the only consistent coverage of mental illness in the black community focuses on the psychological fallout of depression and other mental health issues facing black celebrities.
These portrayals are opportunities for mainstream media to explore larger questions about the escalating suicide rate among black men, the entrenched stigma of appearing weak and vulnerable in the black community by seeking help and the dearth of African-American mental health professionals. Instead, stories focus on the unique narrative surrounding individual celebrities and not mental health problems of a broader community.
When “Soul Train” creator Don Cornelius died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in February at age 75, far more media attention was given to his legacy than his mental state. Instead, his stoicism was noted in a New York Times obituary. During divorce proceedings in 2009, James C. McKinley Jr. wrote, Cornelius “mentioned having ‘significant health problems’ but did not elaborate.” Another friend of Cornelius’s simply described him as being “very private.”
When World Peace, a Los Angeles Lakers player formerly known as Ron Artest, has spoken honestly and publicly about his therapy for mental health issues, reporters have mocked him. In September 2010, a year before Artest changed his name, Los Angeles Times columnist Bill Plaschke referred to him as “the looniest Laker” even as Artest was addressing middle schoolers, urging them to communicate to health care professionals what ails them psychologically.
Journalist and author Ellis Cose says these examples explore “celebrities much more so than the black community.”In 1994, Cose wrote “The Rage of a Privileged Class: Why Are Middle-Class Blacks Angry? Why Should America Care?” and last year, “The End of Anger: A New Generation’s Take on Race and Rage.”
Neither the Cornelius obituary nor Plaschke’s column, for the most part, was linked explicitly to race. Poussaint, a professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, did suggest that Cornelius’s death might launch a conversation about suicide prevention among blacks. “But his take was the exception rather than the rule,” Cose wrote in an e-mail.
Even when the topic is more about black celebrity than race, mental illness, particularly in famous athletes, is viewed as “evidence of a criminal character,” says David J. Leonard, author of “After Artest: The NBA and the Assault on Blackness.” He is an associate professor in the Department of Critical Culture, Gender, and Race Studies at Washington State University.
“Media go immediately to focusing on the purported pathologies of the players themselves and don’t want to see what the broader context is,” Leonard says. “The history of race and mental health is a history of racism and the white medical establishment demonizing and criminalizing the black community through writing about their ‘abnormal personalities’ and being ‘crazy.’
“That history plays out in mainstream media coverage, but it also affects public discussions about mental health because it has so often been used to justify exclusion, segregation and inequality” in mental health treatment for African-Americans.
Online alternative media and black-oriented websites such as The Root, theGrio and independent blogs have reported more consistently and thoroughly on mentally ill African-Americans.
Danielle Belton, who blogs at blacksnob.com, has written for bp Magazine (bphope.com) about her perspective as someone with bipolar disorder, formerly called manic depression, according to webmd.com. Recently, Bassey Ikpi, a writer and blogger working on a book about her bipolar disorder diagnosis in 2004, founded The Siwe Project, a global nonprofit, as a forum for African-Americans to share experiences about mental health in the black community.
To encourage dialogue about a topic rarely discussed publicly, Ikpi created No Shame Day on July 2. On social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, African-Americans worldwide shared stories of navigating mental health in a culture that actively discourages blacks from seeking talk therapy, she says.
“We didn’t get any mainstream media coverage for No Shame Day,” Ikpi says. “There were 80,000 mentions of No Shame Day and The Siwe Project within a six- to eight-hour period on July 2. No Essence, Ebony or Huffington Post. I think it’s changing a little bit, but mainstream media is not moving with the same speed as online publications.”
At least partial resistance to mainstream reporting on black mental health is tied to blacks’ historical stoicism and belief that religion can serve as a substitute for professional therapy or, when necessary, medication.
“We have survived Jim Crow, beating, lynchings and fire hoses,” says Mychal Denzel Smith, a mental health advocate, commentator and writer. “We pride ourselves on strength. I spoke at a high school, and the teacher said, ‘Black folks just don’t have time to be depressed.’
“Of all the things that we’re up against, mental health seems to be last on the list, but if you look at the totality of our experience in America, it can lead to mental illness. But it seems like the last thing you would need to address among all of the ills that plague our community.”
No Shame Day and The Siwe Project are important starting points for continuing a conversation outside mainstream media about the importance of self-care, Smith says.
“What Bassey did with No Shame Day was very proactive activism . . . it’s something she’s been planning for some time. It’s about taking control and being proactive in defining our narrative for us instead of waiting for other people to do it.
“That’s the thing about mental health that we have to know – not waiting for someone to diagnose us. We know that there’s something wrong in our community. There’s something wrong with that uncle that’s always drunk or the aunt that’s on drugs. We have to be more proactive in addressing these issues and making sure that we take our health into account.”
Joshunda Sanders writes media critiques for the Robert C. Maynard Institute for Journalism Education. Her stories and other media critiques are available atwww.mije.org/mmcsi and can be republished free of charge. For more information, please contact Elisabeth Pinio at email@example.com or 510-891-9202.
We all know how important it is to start the day of with a good breakfast, especially if you’re active! Here’s a great vegan breakfast burrito recipe I found on Oh She Glows, and I can’t wait to try it. It’s full of protein, and it will definitely help you get your day started on the right track!
High Protein Vegan Breakfast Burrito
1 package extra-firm tofu, rinsed and pressed
1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves
2 cups diced sweet onion
1 cup diced potato
1 1/2 cups sliced crimini mushrooms
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
3-4 tbsp. minced fresh basil
2 tbsp. minced fresh parsley
1-1.5 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
3/4 tsp. kosher salt and black pepper
Chopped pineapple, salsa, Daiya cheese, green onion, Herbamare, or whatever you like for the garnish.
1. To press the tofu: Rinse the tofu with water and place a few kitchen towels on the counter. Wrap the tofu with another towel, place another towel on top, and finally place several heavy cookbooks on top. Let sit for at least 20 minutes to soak out the water.
2. Heat a large skillet with 1 tsp. oil over medium heat. Sauté garlic and onion for a few minutes over medium heat. Add in the diced potato and mushrooms and sauté for 12 minutes, reducing heat if necessary and stirring frequently so it doesn’t stick to the bottom.
3. Remove tofu from towels and dice on chopping board. You want the tofu very small. Reduce heat to low and stir in the nutritional yeast, tofu, fresh herbs, lemon juice, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Continue cooking on low until potato is cooked through, only a few more minutes, if necessary.
4. Add 3/4 cup of the mixture on a large tortilla wrap, spoon on salsa, and top with Daiya cheese and chopped green onion if desired.
“The Green Mile” star and Academy Award-nominated Michael Clarke Duncan (pictured) is in the intensive care unit (ICU), after going in to cardiac arrest Friday morning, and his girlfriend, reality show villainess Omarosa Stallworth (pictured below), actually saved his life, according to TMZ.
Stallworth reportedly discovered that Duncan was unconscious and barely breathing at around 2:00 a.m. Acting quickly, Stallworth reportedly began to perform emergency CPR, which resuscitated him.
Sudden cardiac arrest occurs when blood flow to a portion of the heart is blocked. The situation is a medical emergency and if not treated immediately, a person can die. CPR or rapid compressions to the chest can improve survival until emergency medical technician workers (EMT) arrive to take over.
The 54-year-old Duncan, who is 6’5″and more than 315 pounds, was transported to the ICU of a nearby hospital, and according to sources who spoke to TMZ, his heart is stable. In addition, Omarosa, his girlfriend of two years, has not left his side throughout the entire episode.
Doctors are now working to find out why Duncan’s heart failed in the first place.
In 2009, Duncan stopped eating meat, became a staunch vegetarian, and began touting the benefits of living a healthy lifestyle.
The larger-than-life actor is best known for his “Green Mile” role as the gentle giant “John Coffery.” He also tickled America’s funnybone as “Franklin ‘Frankie Figs’ Figueroa” in the adventure crime comedy film ”The Whole Nine Yards,” which earned him a Blockbuster Entertainment Award for Favorite Supporting Actor.