Improve Your Health and Fitness

Let our experts fill you in on their own health and fitness secrets

Many diet fads have come and gone throughout history. With more and more people trying to lose weight and an equally large number gaining weight because of the high fat foods that are present in the market and fast food chains today, diets are being sold at a dime a dozen, and dieters are being exploited by many cunning marketers. The grapefruit diet, however, is one of the diets that have withstood the test of time. Already several decades old, the grapefruit diet is still one of the most effective ways to lose 10 to 20 pounds in just a week or two. If you want instant weight loss using the grapefruit diet, here are the steps.

1. Drink up. Grape fruits have naturally occurring enzymes which makes metabolism and calorie burning very quick. These enzymes survive processing, which means that drinking grapefruit juice is just as effective as any other means of putting grapefruit into your body. Drink grapefruit juice before and during each meal. At least a glass per meal is recommended for your body to gain enough of the enzymes that hastens metabolism. By drinking in grapefruit before each meal, you are also adding content to your stomach that will help you minimize the food servings you will eat during the course of the meal.

2. Half each meal. Apart from grapefruit juice, however, the actual fruit should be eaten after every meal. Choose a moderately sized grapefruit and eat half during each meal. The fruit is best when eaten fresh. Because grapefruit diets are based on enzymes, you can also eat the fruit in between meals as a snack that will keep your stomach satisfied – without having to put on extra fats and oils in your body. Keep in mind also that the best grapefruits for you are the pink variety. These are rich in beta carotene, apart from vitamin C.

3. Moderate protein and low crabs. Grapefruit diets, however, do not work by themselves. You will also need to adjust the other food groups that you regularly eat. Generally, the grapefruit diet is classified as a moderate protein and low carbohydrates diet. This means that you should eat smaller servings of meat and minimize the carbohydrates as much as possible. White meat and fish are some of the healthiest food options for you, and whole wheat grain breads are the best sources of carbohydrates for people undertaking the grapefruit diet.

In the end, however, the best way to approach weight loss is through a holistic method that takes not only diet into account but also exercise. Exercise, however, does not have to be very difficult for you and your hectic schedule. Walking to work can already be a good form of exercise, as long as you walk briskly and take longer paths that will build up to half an hour of walk time each day. Also remember that dieting with grapefruits is a commitment that you should be prepared for. No matter how quickly and how many pounds you lose with the diet, flab and fat can easily return if you go back to high fat and high carb food.

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Exercise is good for the body, but do you know that it’s beneficial for the face also? There are different ways to have a face workout. The steps below are some of the ways to tone and circulate blood in your face. You can repeat one face exercise eight times, and then alternate it with another. If at work, you can do one face exercise while talking to someone on the phone.

1. Complete face routine. Stroke and massage all parts of the face using all your fingers. Duplicate what you see your masseuse do on your whole body on your face. If you want full pressure, you can just use your index and middle finger in stroking. Pinching, or using the index and thumb fingers, can be done if you want a lighter and more relaxed face exercise. Not only will these exercises tone your face, it will also stimulate the blood, and keep you awake if you are sleepy.
2. Forehead exercise. Pull your eyebrows towards one another in the direction of your nose. After five counts, push your eyebrows upward, lifting them as high as possible. Widening your eyes can help in this step. You will need to relax in between when the two alternating steps. This exercise can help reduce wrinkles and fine lines by softening them.
3. Eyes exercise. Close your eyes in a relaxed manner. While in this position, move your eyeballs left, right, up and down. Make sure you are seated before doing this exercise. Another exercise for the eyes is this: Sit down. With head still and eyes open the whole time, look straight ahead for five seconds. Look to the left for 5 seconds, to the right for five seconds, upward and downward for five seconds each also.
4. Cheeks exercise. Put your index, middle and ring finger side by side and push them towards your cheeks. You should counter this motion by smiling as wide as you can. This will raise your cheeks, and the downward movement of the fingers will tone this part of your face.
5. Mouth and lips movements. Opening your mouth as big as you can, at the same time stretching lips as far out as possible, is an easy but very effective exercise. Another method is pretending that you are chewing bubble gum. Make sure your mouth is closed. By doing this, you can release tension in the jaw muscles. The last example of a possible exercise is positioning your lips to kiss someone very far from you. This must last for 10 to 15 minutes before relaxing.
6. Chin exercise. Sit comfortably. Look up at the sky or ceiling by tilting your head. Put your lower lip above your upper lip as far up as possible. Stay in this position until five seconds, and relax.
7. Neck exercise. The most common neck exercise is usually used as a warm-up exercise. Do this in intervals of eight seconds. Stand up straight. Face towards your left. Face towards your right. Face upward. Face downward. Another famous neck exercise is the neck rotation exercise. Using your neck as the centrifugal point, rotate your face in a clockwise and then counterclockwise direction.

Do these face exercises correctly and regularly to produce a well-toned and healthy face.

Free Ebook: The 30-Day Low-Carb Diet Solution
Publisher: Wiley (November 14, 2003)
ISBN-10: 047145415X
ISBN-13: 978-0471454151

Low-carb 101– all it takes is 30 days!From the authors of the phenomenal bestseller Protein Power comes a quick, easy-to-follow low-carb diet plan designed to get you on the fastest possible track to losing weight, feeling fantastic, and improving your health. If you’ve heard about all the research that shows how low-carb eating can turn your health around by keeping your insulin levels down and getting your excess weight off–but don’t want to wade through hundreds of pages of explanation or complicated formulas before you get started–The 30-Day Low-Carb Diet Solution is for you.The Eades are two of the most trusted names in low-carb dieting. They have helped millions of readers lose weight. In this book, they provide the simplest possible diet designed for the best possible results. Drs. Michael and Mary Dan Eades guide you through all the basics step by step, explaining how to:
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Determine how much protein to eat for optimal health
Measure the exact portions of carbohydrate-rich foods you can enjoy now to reach your goalsFeaturing 30 days of low-carb meal plans, almost 100 delicious, easy recipes, self-assessment quizzes, and fill-in worksheets for tracking your progress, this guide will have you on your way to a thinner and healthier you in just a month! Isn’t it time for you to findThe

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For so many of us, we turn to medication for the healing of body, mind, and spirit. The truth is that laughter is the key to imporve your health that try to plague our bodies, day in and day out. The way to overcome the stress that you face every day is to do things that will bring laughter to your soul. You might like watching a certain kind of comedy movie, that will keep you laughing or you might like being in a environment that will keep you in a mood full of laughter.

Laughter is the key to healing, and it also brings families and loved ones together by binding the emotions and feelings together. There are just too many ways that laughter plays a important role in one’s life. There is simply no reason for a person to spend all their time being depressed or sad, because that doesn't help the problem that you might be facing. The only way to heal and find strength in yourself is to laugh and bring peace to your mind. When people laugh they can help to get rid of problems like high blood pressure, since the main reason why people have high blood pressure is because they tend to worry about problems that they face.

Next thing you know you're in the doctor’s office because you're feeling light-headed or you're having chest pains. That's why everyone needs to laugh. It's easy as 1-2-3, and it's the best cure that anyone can trust. If you laugh more, you will begin to see the full effects that laughter will do for your body. For instance laughter will help boost your energy levels and help strengthen your immune system. Laughter can help your body increase new blood cells that will target the bad blood cells.

Another good reason to depend on laughter is because you don't have to pay for it, or worry about expensive doctors. You can simply use laughter anytime of the day, 7 days a week and 24 hours a day without worrying about time and money. Laughter is just like an antioxidant, because it helps improve the immune system without the use of pills or other medications. Laughter works faster than anything that has been created over centuries and generations, because it helps to restore healing and a create a much more positive attitude. It is also good for restoring relationships, because laughter can bring back that feeling of happiness and intimacy that so many relationships lose over time because there is no humor.

One can definitely say that laughter is the most powerful medicine in the world. It has the strength to overcome any challenge. No matter what we face, laughter is the key to good health. It's the only cure in helping you establish and maintain your good health.

Your health should be considered one of the most important things you have. As such, it makes sense to make sure that you get quality health care, wherever you are. Making a quality assessment of health care providers requires that you have certain knowledge of the quality measures and quality indicators that are used to determine hospital or clinical quality.

Here are some tips on find good health care:

* Quality Indicators. There are several quality indicators that you can use in selecting your health care provider. Some of the most valid ones are those used by the OECD (Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development) to assess the health care providers in their member countries. For the OECD, in particular, quality indicators are those elements that are reflective of the technical quality of the health care service, such as established measures of health improvement or the outcome that can be attributed to the medical care being provided by the person or organization being assessed. Having such quality indicators readily available to those searching for good quality health care can greatly assist the searchers in selecting the proper health care provider that suits their needs, as these quality indicators are indicative of the value that they will be getting for their investment.
* Do Your Research. If you are serious about getting the best information about health care providers that you can get your hands on, it never hurts to do a bit of research. The OECD has outlined several key quality indicators in finding a good quality doctor or a good quality hospital; these key quality indicators have been divided into several distinct areas, namely, diabetes care, cardiac care, primary care and prevention, patient safety, and mental health. Use these indicators to assess the health care providers that you have in mind, depending on your need.
* Know Your Options. Having a working knowledge of the different health care options can spell all the difference. Knowing the differences between an HMO, PPO, and DHMO will certainly aid your search in finding the health care plan that fits you.
* Know Your Needs. Knowing which particular areas of health care would be of potential use to you can aid you in finding the quality health care that you are looking for. For example, does it make sense to invest in dental insurance, or would you prefer to keep dental expenses an open option? If you do not have any serious dental issues, you might want to reconsider if you will really be reaping the long-term benefits of having dental insurance
, or if it would be best to go on a per-occasion basis.
* Seek Specialized Information. Knowing the different quality indicators used in measuring health care quality is of no use if you cannot find information on the specific institutions nor individuals that you have in mind. This is where websites such as come in. This website has lists of health care providers, such as hospitals, nursing homes, and doctors, in different areas around the country, and gives ratings on these individuals and institutions based on specified criteria. This gives you a comparative, unbiased analysis of the health care providers that can greatly assist you in finding a good quality provider.

Finding a good quality health care provider begins with doing your research. After all, health care is one of the biggest and most important investments you will ever make.

Learning to eat with a new tongue ring may seem complicated. If you are contemplating adding this piercing to your existing piercings, you will find that this feat is actually easier than you had expected. You have already gone through the hardest part - getting the piercing. Now, all you have to do is remember all of the cleaning and other aftercare. Eating will actually be one of the easiest adjustments to make.

If you have already tried to carry on a conversation with anyone, you are already aware of the difficulty in speech with a new tongue ring. One quick way to help reduce the amount of saliva in your mouth before speaking and while eating with a tongue ring is to take the time to swallow, not spit. Spitting causes the mouth to close on the tongue; the added pressure on your fresh piercing may even cause you more pain.

What foods can you eat that will not cause any unwanted pain?

With a fresh piercing, you have to avoid foods that are hot, spicy, or may get caught up in the longer, healing barbell. The easiest food is clear broth, as you might or might not already be sucking on ice to reduce the swelling. Instead, try such suggestions as chicken and stars soup, mashed potatoes and baby food - just avoid those with citric acid. If you do decide to sip broth or eat chicken and stars, remember to let the food cool before eating. You do not want to burn your tongue.

Any food that is easy to chew or just swallow is best.

While chewing your food, you should pay close attention to your tongue and the way it 'naturally' moves inside of your mouth while chewing; you may be surprised at how much you use it. This will be painful to the piercing and it's bad on the teeth if you do bite down on it while chewing - this can be bad enough to make you not want to eat anything, so be careful for the first few days.

Remember to take your time when eating with your new tongue ring, sometimes it takes biting down on it once to remember. If you do bite down, don't panic. It is possible to shatter a tooth if you hit the ring just right, but if you don't rush the process it's actually normal to bite the piercing once or twice as you're learning.

Listen to the piercer's advice; most tongue piercings take between 10-14 days to heal, but if you do not eat the required amount of food dail you will prolong the healing process and it will take longer for you to get the shorter barbell, which is easier to eat with.

While there are many standing twist asanas or postures in yoga, the basic standing twist asana is a fairly easy and stress-free posture to practice while warming up. It helps promote spinal mobility and tones the muscles of the abdomen and waist.

In order to begin the standing twist asana, you should start by positioning yourself in the standing upright pose or samasthiti. This asana is also referred to as the mountain pose or tadasana. It helps promote good posture, and it is recommended that you incorporate this asana into all aspects of your daily life, including when you walk, sit, work, and relax. Samasthiti is also important, because it is the beginning point for most standing postures in yoga, so you should learn it early on in your training.

1. To assume the samasthiti asana, stand upright with your feet together and your arms at your sides.
2. Your shoulders should be relaxed, and your entire body, including your head, neck, spine, and legs, should be standing upright in a vertical line. You should not be slouching in this posture, nor should you be standing too rigidly. Your head should be relaxed with your chin held level, but not stiffly.
3. Now, to move into the standing twist asana, extend your arms in front of your chest so that your palms are facing downward and your thumbs are touching.
4. While keeping your eyes on the backs of your hands, carefully swing your body as far as possible to the left without shifting the positioning of your feet.
5. Stay in this position for about five seconds before swinging your body toward the middle.
6. Repeat the posture by swinging your body as far to the right as possible without shifting the position of your feet.

Although breathing is very important in yoga, many practitioners will caution against focusing one's attention too much on the breath. While it is definitely wise to make sure that you continue to breathe deeply throughout your yoga posturing, you should not worry too much about getting the exact breathing techniques mastered until you have learned how to truly perform the yoga asanas and have practiced yoga for at least one year. Even so, if you are interested in the breathing techniques for the standing twist asana, make sure to breathe out as you initially twist to the left, and breathe in as you twist back toward the center. Repeat this sequence while twisting to the right.

Obesity is a major problem in society today. It has already been identified as a major contributor of major ailments and conditions like diabetes, heart problems, high blood pressure, and osteoarthritis. Obesity can be attributed to living a sedentary lifestyle, unhealthy eating habits, and hormones. Doctors would normally suggest diet and exercise but most overweight people find these hard to do. Going to the gym should be squeezed into their schedule and dieting means eating bland food. The next best thing, or most convenient to some, is taking diet pills.

The number of people seeking weight loss benefits from diet pills is so great that there are countless of weight loss products in the market today. Are they safe to use? Of course, the manufacturers will not tell you that they are not. Remember that these are medications and they have chemicals that may or may not harm your body. The side effects may even be a greater problem for you.

Are you taking diet pills to lose weight? Here are some things you should know to identify the side effects of your diet pills:

1. Take note of changes in the way your digestive system is working. Since the pill goes straight to your tummy, your digestive system will be the first to be affected. Expect nausea and vomiting. Some diet pills may cause you to pass gas more often or for you to have loose bowel movements. Most dieters may disregard these as minor side effects but be cautious about the possibility of dehydration because of vomiting and loose bowel movement.
2. Check your heart rate or pulse rate. Phentermine, a common diet pill, can cause palpitations. Even just a simple walk in the park or being surprised may trigger palpitation. Most often than not, diet pills have an effect on the blood pressure. Stop taking these pills should you feel your heart race often.
3. Observe the way you perform your daily tasks. Diet pills may let you experience vision problems as a complication of rising blood pressure. Diet pills may also affect your balance. You may suddenly feel dizzy after standing up from a sitting position. It may slow down the way you process thoughts in your brain and affect your reflects. Make sure that your diet pill do not give you these effects especially if you drive yourself to work.
4. Assess your moods. Do you experience mood swings? It is definitely a side effect of the diet pills you are taking. Appetite suppressants will give you trouble getting enough sleep. Thus, during the day, you will naturally feel irritable and less patient. Other diet pills can make a person very nervous and anxious even on simple things.

Taking diet pills is generally a personal decision of the person who is desperate to lose weight. However, it is very important to consider their side effects because these greatly affect the physical, emotional, mental, and social well-being of the person.

An elliptical machine is also known as an elliptical trainer, which is best for cardiovascular exercises but not too harsh to those people who are very sensitive to joint pains. The reason for the latter is because there is less pounding involved in the joints when one is exercising using the elliptical trainer. In order to meet the multiple fitness needs of people, elliptical trainers now come in various kinds:

1. Ironman Elliptical Trainer - This kind of elliptical trainer is purposely devised for those people who are serious in their fitness regimen and like doing workouts. According to several exercise machine reviews, this elliptical trainer is a winner when we take into consideration its durability because it is made from steel and mind you, it is not just any ordinary steel, but heavy gauge steel. It is therefore expected that Ironman Elliptical Trainers will last a long time to the point of being passed on as a family heirloom. Another outstanding feature is its very large LCD display, which shows the amount of calories you have burned among other things.
2. Elliptical Horizon - This is another kind of elliptical trainer available in leading department stores like Walmart, which is as good as the previous one when it comes to weight loss and as a fitness regimen. However, the downside for this particular equipment is that the brakes need to be checked often since they are not very durable. The use of this machine is also difficult for those people who are not gifted in height. Despite all these, the ratings of some consumers reflect that this is still worth its price provided the warranty period is extended or when it is put on sale.
3. NordicTrack Elliptical Trainers - Its good brand name is one of the reasons why this particular elliptical trainer is a big hit since it is under the subsidiary of Icon Health and Fitness. They have a complete line of equipment that are further subdivided into a series like the commercial series for gym use, the ramp series, the spacesaver series and a lot more.
4. Orbitrek Elliptical Glider - This kind of trainer is not suited for gym use because of its elliptical spectrum which is not really all that good. However, this can still be used in homes. The unusual noise and movements are just some of the problems posed by former users. But still, this trainer, as home equipment, is still trying its best to deliver maximum benefit.
5. Proform Elliptical Trainer - Just like the NordicTrack Elliptical Trainers, this is under the subsidiary of Icon Health and Fitness. This is not ideal for hardcore health buffs because this kind of machine is merely light duty. Nevertheless, the aesthetics of Proform trainers is the main reason why this brand is still sellable.

These days, advertisers are riding on the bandwagon for health conscious people because it has a very good market. There are so many health teas, vitamin waters and weight-loss tablets available for sale. Although some are backed up by scientific evidence, there is still no hardcore proof that these products are indeed effective. Hence, why not start a fitness routine and try using the elliptical machine.

Summer can present many opportunities for fun, but summer stress is also extremely common and can take a significant toll. The following strategies can be especially timely during the summer season.

* Keep Kids Occupied
If you don’t have your kids in some type of summer camp (or even if you do), you’ll need to have some enriching activities to keep them happy and stimulated so boredom doesn’t create misery for all of you. Allowing your older children to plan activities for younger kids (like ‘treasure hunts’ around the house, or games of hide-and-seek) can be a great way to keep everyone occupied in a constructive way. So can the old standbys: couch forts, board games, and educational outings. The following things can provide an extra 'grab bag' of ideas to keep everyone happy and sane.

* Pace Yourself
While summer offers many opportunities for fun activities, keep in mind that it’s okay to say no to some. Sometimes even fun activities can lead to stress if your schedule is overloaded, so carefully choose among the barbeques, beach days, soirees and other activities and just do what you think you’ll truly enjoy, remembering to also schedule in some down time.

* Set Boundaries
While you’re already setting boundaries on your social schedule, you may need to remember to set boundaries at work as well. Don’t let the siren song of summer steal your focus from your job duties—stay as productive as possible—but be careful not to take on too many of your vacationing co-workers’ responsibilities either. Teamwork is a good thing; just don’t take on an overwhelming amount of extra work if you have a choice. (This article on how to say no can help.)

* Try A Staycation or Playcation
Yes, staycations, and even playcations, have become the new vacations of choice for those who can't spare the time or the money for a traditional vacation. In some cases, these can even be better for your stress levels. (Ever hear of someone coming back from their too-busy vacation feeling like they need a vacation from their vacation? Or of a 'working vacation' that just turned into an exercise in 'working from a less convenient location'?) The key is to make relaxation or playtime the primary focus--even if for only a day or two--and get the benefit of vacations without all the expense! (And, if you do take an actual trip, remember to leave work at home and keep things simple.)

* Take a Mini-Vacation
If you don’t have the time, money or ability to take a full-blown vacation, you can achieve many of the same benefits by taking a mini-vacation at home. The main idea is to stop the hectic flow of activities, escape the mundane madness of daily life, or turn off the phone for a few hours. See this article for specific suggestions for mini-vacations when the real deal isn’t an option.

* Take Advantage of Summer Stress Relievers
Summer provides extra daylight hours for morning exercise, relaxing evening activities and fun in the garden. If you have kids around, you can also try some of these stress relievers you can do with your kids, or if you don’t have children, you can still enjoy these stress relievers for your inner child.

Danger Zone 1: parties, special occasions and holiday celebrations
Diet Destructors Not having a plan, feeling deprived, peer pressure, gluttony
You can stick to your diet without being a party pooper. Before heading out the door in those 3-inch slingbacks, decide what your limit will be. Will you have just one piece of pie instead of the usual two, or perhaps skip dessert altogether in favor of a favorite entree? Make those choices before the event. And, just for extra insurance, set a goal for morning-after damage control. For example, you might decide that if you overindulge, you'll eat lighter meals for a few days afterward and increase your cardio workouts. Consider especially the impact of your beverage choices: "Alcohol is frequently served at celebrations, which lowers inhibitions and makes you more likely to make a bad food choice," Washington cautions.

Danger Zone 2: work
Diet Destructors Peer pressure, not having a plan, "stuck" syndrome
With doughnuts, vending machines and birthday cakes around virtually every corner, there are very few places the Diet Destructors love more than the workplace. Your best chance for success in adhering to a healthy diet while at work is to enlist help from like-minded colleagues. Consider taking turns bringing healthful foods to meetings, or ask the person in charge of refreshments to offer some healthier options such as fresh fruit and yogurt or whole-wheat bagels and lowfat cream cheese. For maximum control of work-time eating, you'll need to plan ahead and bring your own healthful lunch and snacks from home. Keep a jar of almonds in a desk drawer and have two dozen nuts and a small piece of fruit instead of a candy bar when an afternoon slump hits. For around 200 calories you'll get a balanced mini-meal with about 6 grams of protein.

Danger Zone 3: happy hour
Diet Destructors Peer pressure, fatigue, "stuck" syndrome
Sometimes it's fun to relax after 5 p.m. with co-workers, but just as often happy hour turns into an extension of the workday tedium. Whether happy hour is a command performance or an enjoyable reprieve, the advice is the same, Washington says: "Start out with water or seltzer to hydrate yourself. Sometimes we drink too much alcohol after a long day of work simply because we're thirsty." When it's time to order appetizers, get involved and put your vote in for the healthiest options, like a veggie platter with salsa or grilled chicken strips. If you know you'll be at a restaurant that has only high-fat choices, eat a piece of fruit or handful of nuts before you leave work so you won't be as tempted to overeat the fatty stuff like cheese nachos and fried potato skins.

Danger Zone 4: the gym
Diet Destructors Not having a plan, fatigue
Gyms and health clubs have expanded into the lucrative fast-food market, selling everything from energy bars and sports waters to smoothies and protein drinks. But just because these foods are available at your gym doesn't mean they're low in fat or calories. Judy Phillips, M.S., R.D., project manager of the childhood obesity program at South End Community Health Center in Boston, recommends saving calories and money by skipping these tempting products. "If you're eating normal, well-spaced meals throughout the day, don't bother with food at the gym. Bring an orange for after exercise if you feel you need it," she says.

Danger Zone 5: vacations
Diet Destructors Not having a plan, gluttony, "stuck" syndrome
Vacations are all about taking a break from our normal routines. As a result, we often end up breaking our diet rules and gaining weight. All-inclusive vacations and cruises in particular can be challenging. Being on a luxury liner is like being on a floating island loaded with fabulous, free food, says Karl Muhlberger, corporate executive chef for the five-star Cunard cruise line. "Most people feel like, 'Hey, I paid for this and I want to enjoy it.'" But it is possible to eat healthy by choosing the right cruise. Cunard's Queen Mary 2, for example, has a Canyon Ranch SpaClub right on board, and Cunard's other ships offer vegetarian, low-carb and lowfat menus. No matter what your vacation destination, avoid packing on the pounds by planning how you'll eat before you go. One solution is to choose to treat yourself on even days and practice moderation on odd days. Or, if you decide you want to enjoy whatever you want whenever you want it, include a plan for getting back on track as soon as you return home.

Danger Zone 6: air travel
Diet Destructors Fatigue, not having a plan, "stuck" syndrome
There is perhaps no time in your life when you are more at the mercy of a bad food environment than when you're in the air. "You can literally spend your whole day with no access to wholesome food," says Michel Nischan, Fairfield, Conn.-based author of the best-selling cookbook Taste Pure and Simple (Chronicle Books, 2003) and executive chef for Song airline. "First of all, you've got the stress of travel, which makes you more nervous and likely to eat anyway. And then you finally say to yourself, 'I'm just going to go get whatever I can find.' And it's maybe some giant muffin with 1,000 calories."

Last year Song launched a buy-on-board menu of organic meals and vegetarian entrees. The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine rated 10 top airlines for healthful food selections, and Song received the highest marks. So when you book your ticket, inquire about nutritionally sound food choices. If the prospects aren't appealing, bring your own wholesome snacks, such as apples, dried fruit or nuts to tide you over until you reach your destination.

Get fit in a summer-friendly weight room — the pool

Water-based lifting, core conditioning, and cardio. Offered in a variety of formats at almost any fitness club with a pool, classes use flotation devices to create resistance below the water, resulting in a full-body, nonimpact workout that can rival even the most strenuous strength training.


In addition to strengthening your core, aqua training is also ideal for increasing flexibility and smashing through plateaus in the weight room.

A typical class starts with a warm-up designed to increase the core body temperature. From there, it goes to different strength and cardio exercises. One of the more popular pieces of equipment is the handheld buoy — essentially the dumbbell of aqua training. It's used to add extra resistance to various exercises. You may also end up moving through the water with a kickboard or even perched on the edge of the pool.

Want to get your family moving? Tempt kids with these irresistible activities. If you play along, your children are more likely to want to join in. Plus, you'll reap the fitness benefits too.

1. Hit the playground.
"Preschooler on playground climber"Catherine Holecko
Most kids can't help but move their muscles when faced with a tempting array of climbers, swings, and slides. Sandbox play counts too; all that digging and scooping is great for the arms. Mix things up more by:

* Bringing some extra toys (balls, kites, jump ropes)
* Meeting another family there and playing together
* Playing obstacle course—chart out a wacky route and see who can do it the fastest
* Trying out a new playground to check out its offerings—anything different from your usual haunts?

2. Teach classic backyard games.
Recruit a few neighborhood kids to join in, or just play as a family. Remember Red Rover and Four Square? Inside, try get-moving games such as Twister and Hullabaloo.

3. Have some good clean fun.
Tackling housework together is more fun than doing it alone, takes less time, and gets everyone up and moving. Older kids can vacuum and mop; littler ones can dust and wipe. Everyone can help sort laundry or move it from one machine to another (extra points for hanging it outside on the line!). Outside, take on sweeping, raking, weeding, digging, or watering chores together.

4. Host a dance party.
This works indoors, outdoors, anywhere, anytime. All you need is some jammin' music. If you start shaking your groove thing, your kids will clamor to join in. For extra incentive, bring out some dress-up items for props (filmy scarves, silly hats, or feather boas are perfect).

5. Walk!
Take a family stroll after dinner, walk to school and back, take your dog on a spin around the block, do errands on foot or park at the far end of the parking lot. Consider outfitting the whole family with inexpensive pedometers, then tracking your steps together. Set goals and reward yourselves with a family outing (bowling, batting cages, etc.)

I just saw a very interesting piece from CBS News (embedded above) that tells of a project that one very optimistic and enterprising soul named Colette Hiller decided to take on: scattering 30 pianos in random public places around London. Their puropse? To inspire impromptu public sing-alongs among strangers. The goal? To foster goodwill and social bonding among the people in the city, who may need a pick-me-up because of the recession and other real-world stressors.

It may sound like a lot of work and expense to procure 30 pianos, secure them in various locations, and protect them from the weather, all while complying with city ordinances and filing appropriate paperwork. It was. But the effect seems to be a great success: people around the city, people who otherwise tend to keep to themselves, shared music and goodwill, and found their days becoming a little brighter.

I'm sharing this story with you because it makes me smile, and because we can learn something from this project, even if we don't have real-life access to ransom public pianos:

1. Music really can be a pick-me-up, and can brighten your day. (Read more about the benefits of music.)

2. Feeling connected to others can also brighten your day. It's worth going outside of yourself to connect with others, even if they're strangers. (Read more about the reasons to smile at others.)

3. The 'Random Acts of Kindness' movement is still alive, and still bringing happiness to people. It's worth going through some effort to bring extra happiness to someone's day--that can bring happiness to yours as well! (Read more about the benefits of altruism.)

4. Happiness is contagious. (Read about shortcuts to happiness.)

Obviously, scattering a bunch of free pianos around town is a serious undertaking, and is a rare enough act to make international news. However, kind acts are performed every day, by all types of people, and they count, too. What nice things have you done to help others? What nice things have others done to put a smile on your face? Share your 'Acts of Kindness' stories here in the comments--you'll make many people smile!

There are a lot of advertisements claiming that their products can help you get rid of stress. There is no problem in giving them a try, actually. However, it is most helpful to know what causes your stress so you know the best thing to do to combat it. One of the things that you can try is time management. Doing this won't need even a single cent from you.

Do you know why are you feeling stressed out? Have you been figuring out why there are so many things to do but you have so little time? Are stacks of paper piling higher and higher on your desk? Do you feel there is no point for you to finish them anymore? Surely, the most helpful thing for you will be to take control of your time. Once you manage to do it, you are definitely out of that nightmare.

When you do not complete your tasks, it often causes you headache. Whether you are at work, school, or home, finding yourself unproductive is stressful indeed. So what could you do now to wake up from this nightmare? Handling your time is the best way to start. Here's how.

* Know your priorities. Check out important matters and give your attention to them first. In this case, you can avoid investing so much time in trivial matters that won't lighten your load in any way.

* Make a daily plan. Writing down your schedule for the day will help you. If you know what you need to be doing at a specific time and you follow that schedule, there is no question that you will complete everything that needs to be done. Just make sure your list contains all you should do in a day to help you not miss a task.

* Ask for help. Don't play superman. You don't need to do all the tasks. Why not consider only those important and beneficial things? If you are working in a group, why not delegate someone to do it for you? In the first place, you need not take on all the tasks of the group individually, right?

* Give your best. Make sure that what you are doing at the moment is the right thing. It would definitely save you time if you don't have to redo your work because of errors.

* Get enough rest and sleep. Once you get enough of down time, you will perform more efficiently in your work.

* Enjoy a break. Nothing will happen if you try to do things when you are too tired. It's always better to take a break from work.

* Attend trainings. Take some time out for time management training if you think you really cannot handle creating a system on your own even after reading self-help articles and books. Some software
can help you handle time, too.

There are still a lot of ways to help you out in your time management. Articles and software are readily available for you with the same purpose. You may relax and try to help yourself by managing your time. Stop asking yourself if and why you are stressed right now. Give yourself a good and less stressful break. Start with controlling your time.

Building strong biceps is an essential part of any good upper body workout routine. Some people may tend to ignore the bicep. During an upper body workout, we have to know when we feel comfortable working out the biceps, and what mode of strengthening them is most enjoyable at any given time.

The most common form of bicep workout is through curls. There are several ways to do curls:

* Sit at a curling bench with a number of different holds on a bar.
* Sit at a curling bench with dumbbells.
* You can sit on the edge of a bench with a dumbbell and curl with an elbow on one knee.
* Stand with a straight bar and use your torso to elevate your weight.
* Stand with a dumbbell in each hand and do curls with both hands.
* Do pull ups with one or both arms, or pull yourself into a beam while leaning and using your body weight.

A combination of some of these modes of exercise may be the most effective solution to that day's workout. If you have a training log, write down what works best each day and your mood. You can tailor the building of strong biceps to your mood each time you work out. You can really figure out your own workout style this way.

Perhaps one day you will find that you are not in the mood to actually go out to a gym, but you still desire a good upper body workout which strengthens your biceps. Find a column and pull yourself into that. This is fun, easy, and it works well. Maybe you have just had a cardiovascular workout and are too tired to stand and do curls. Sit and do curls to continue your workout with an upper-body cool down workout.

Building strong biceps means regularly working out your biceps. To properly work them your biceps, you need variety. A variety of bicep strengthening exercises keeps the trainee interested in the goal, which is to strengthen the biceps. Perhaps you may discover a unique way to strengthen your arms that feels comfortable to you or that you find engaging. Experiment, figure out which techniques work best for you on certain days, and you will be able to keep yourself motivated to accomplish your workout goals.

There are countless times that many organizations and even specialists warn people about water conservation and water safety. Their claim--the water you and your family drink may be contaminated. It's a very serious claim, especially as it threatens the safety and health of the entire family. Now, you want the water quality of your tap water to be tested.

It's actually a wise thought to have a water quality test. So, before you take a water sample to your most trusted laboratory associations, check your water resources first to see if they produce potentially harmful water.

You just need to assess the odor, taste, and color of the water. Be alerted if these properties are abnormal. Normal water is odorless, tasteless, and colorless. Your water may be contaminated if it has a foul smell, tastes like rust, or has a tinted color.

Here's how your water should be tested:

1. List your own observations on the water. The laboratory will need to consider your own observations for comparison with their lab results. You may also list other reasons why you suspect that the water is contaminated. These instances may be gastrointestinal illness of a family member, etc.

2. Call the laboratory that will test the water. They will give you instructions on how to properly collect samples from your water resources. The instructions differ depending on the laboratory you will choose and the kind of test they will do. Usually, they will give you bottles or containers to collect the samples. Follow their instructions and standards carefully, because a simple mistake might produce inaccurate findings.

3. The water will be tested by the laboratory. They can do the basic evaluation for the water by discovering its standards, composition and the chemical or mineral contents. The result will be assessed to see if it passed the minimum criteria for health and safety. If not, most laboratories will do a special water test. This test can be:

* Bacteriological Test. This test will show whether your water is contaminated by any disease-causing bacteria.
* Mineral Test. This test is intended to reveal the minerals suspended in the water and the percentage of each of these minerals. Imbalance of minerals is very dangerous for the health and even for water-using household appliances.
* Chemical Test. Chemicals like pesticides and petroleum products may threaten health when they contaminate water. This test is made to determine whether the water has any of these hazardous chemicals.

You can consider getting the laboratory services of your municipal water supply system. They do regular monitoring and tests of the water's contaminants. Your national health department may also be helpful in conducting bacteriological tests. Also, state universities have laboratories capable of testing water quality. Other trusted entities that can test water quality are local engineering firms and associations, water management treatment companies, and any private testing labs.

Water conservation as a part of water management really makes sense. But it is more beneficial for all if the water supply that we conserve is safe. So if you notice something suspicious about your tap water quality, act immediately and call the nearest testing center.

Drug addiction is never good. It not only destroys the life of a drug abuser, but also wrecks havoc on the lives of that person's family and friends. As with any disease, the best cure for drug addiction is early intervention - suspected drug abusers should be tested and subsequently medicated and rehabilitated before they overdose themselves with drugs. So what do you do if you suspect that one of your family members, friends, or relatives is abusing drugs? Test them.

Of course, this is easier said than done. A suspected drug addict will deny their addiction even if they are caught red-handed. They will even refuse subtle suggestions to get drug treatment and rehabilitation, though you have the best intentions. Thus, it may be prudent to use non-invasive tactics to confirm your suspicion. Instant drug test kits are very handy in this kind of situation. Here we describe some instant drug test kits that you can use to test for drug abuse.

* Hair Follicle Drug Test. Perhaps the inconspicuous and most non-invasive way to test someone suspected of drug abuse is through his hair. Law enforcement officials trust this test because of its zero-"tolerance" feature, which means that it can detect drugs used by the individual in the last 90 days, regardless of the amount. Drugs that can be detected in a standard hair test include cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamine, and phenycyclidine.

If you are planning to use this test, you need at least 40 milligrams of hair. This converts to about 50-70 strands that are at least 1.5 inches in length. If there is little hair to be collected from the head, you can try hair from other locations on the body except the pubic areas.

* Saliva Drug Test. Next to hair follicles, saliva drug testing might be your next best bet to confirm your suspicions. However, there is a small window of time to administer this test after recent drug use - saliva drug tests should be administered within 12 to 24 hours of drug use. Marijuana, heroin, cocaine and amphetamines can be detected using this testing procedure. In this test, you need to collect samples of saliva using saliva strips or a mouth pad. There's no need to go anywhere, which makes this test hard to adulterate. Because of its ease of use and non-invasive nature, many employees and parents prefer to use saliva drug tests.

* Urine Drug Test. This is another non-invasive way to confirm drug abuse. It can detect the use of many drugs, including heroin drugs. Unfortunately, its efficacy is a matter of debate. Still, many parents and authorities choose this option when conducting "surprise" drug testing.

These are just a few tests that you can do to confirm the drug addiction of your relative or friend. Once your suspicions have been validated, seek help immediately. Convince the person to get drug treatment, medication or rehabilitation. Your vigilance will, hopefully, save a life.

You might end up thinking, "That could not probably make enough of a difference.And I'd feel silly doing it." First, the longest journey starts with a single step. And second, would you rather feel stupid being fat and unfit or doing something about it? I thought so. Here are 7 tips to change your life.

Vinyl Ready Art - Holidays

Diet Tip 1 : Move. Twiddle your thumbs. Squeeze one of those little exercise balls while you watch television to burn energy and tone your arms at the same time. Take that more distant parking spot. Even if you have physical restrictions, you can tailor a program to your requirements. Move whatever you can, whenever and wherever you can. And just think - laughing is good exercise. It’s like jogging on the inside.

Diet Tip 2 : Portions and Proportions. Concentrate on portion sizes according to the eating plan you select. Use a smaller size plate – don’t supersize it! Use some of the simple guidelines like “3 oz. of protein is about the size of your palm or a deck of playing cards” or “one serving of rice is the size of a tennis ball”.

Diet Tip 3 : Substitute low calorie Density Foods for High. Select foods with low cal density foods that have less calories relative to their weight. If you decrease the energy density of your diet, caloric intake will decline, says Barbara Rolls, professor of nutritive sciences at Pennsylvania State School and co-writer together with Robert Barnett of The Volumetrics Eating Plan. Foods like fruit and vegetables and salad greens and broth. The magic ingredient these foods possess is water! Water has zero calories, so the more volume represented by water, the less room there is for calories. Water also creates a feeling of fullness, helping one to eat less.

Diet Tip 4 : Be conscious of What You Eat. Keep a food diary and be honest, because no one but you is going to see it. Don't forget the spoon that you licked while putting away the left-overs or the sampling ( s ) you had while changing the seasoning. It will help you determine your eating habits. Keep it long enough and patterns begin to appear.

Diet Tip 5 : Eat More Slowly. This allows your body the several minutes it takes to signal your brain that it is full.

Diet Tip six : Try New herbs and spices in the place of Butter and Salt. When food tastes different or more flavorsome, we have a tendency to savor it more and eat slower.

Diet Tip 7: Add Variety. Along the same lines, The American Dietetic Association recommends increasing variety. Often adding a single new food to your diet can end boredom and increase nutrition.

Do you have any tips you feel should be added to the above that you have successfully applied to change your health?

Hepatitis A is a liver disease caused by the Hepatitis A virus. The virus attacks the liver and causes it to swell. The liver is the organ responsible for helping digestion and filtering impurities from the blood. It keeps our system clean. So if the liver is infected, it isn’t able to do its job properly. This can cause a lot of other health problems, as a result of poor liver function.

Hepatitis A is a common disease in the US. The Hepatitis A virus is found in the stools of people infected with the virus. This can be spread to another person by putting anything in the mouth that has been contaminated with the fecal matter of an infected person. This can include touching a toilet handle that someone else has used, and not washing the hands immediately afterward. Not washing your hands before cooking and eating can also spread contamination.

Hand washing is one of the best ways to prevent getting Hepatitis A. Think about how many things you touch in a single day. And do you remember to wash your hands often, or just after using the restroom?

Hepatitis A can also be spread to sexual partners as well. So if you are in a relationship or are married, you both should be vaccinated. This would also apply to a roommate situation. You would be exposed to those same risks. Taking precautions and getting vaccinated are the best ways to protect you from getting this infection.

Who is at risk of getting Hepatitis A:

* The sexual partner of an infected person
* Prostitutes or anyone who exchanges sex for money
* Travelers to countries without proper sanitation and good water filtering

Tips for preventing Hepatitis A:

* Get a Hepatitis A Vaccination. The vaccine is given in a series of two injections. You will need to get both to be fully protected. Once you have had the vaccine or if you had previously been infected, you cannot get it again. You will have immunity to the disease.
* Good Hygiene. Wash your hands several times a day with soap and water. You should always wash your hands after using the bathroom, changing a diaper, or before preparing or eating food.
* Use bottled water for drinking and cooking when traveling in areas with poor sanitation practices.
* Wash all fruits and vegetables.
* Cook foods thoroughly, and follow safe food handling procedures. Keep meats from touching vegetables while cutting and preparing. Use a separate knife and cutting board if necessary.

Tension is one of the chief causes of eye strain, so taking time to relax as well as to exercise your eyes will make an amazing difference. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths. When you breathe, take the time to fill the lungs as completely as you can without strain. Try to let each exhalation last nearly as long as the inhalation that preceded it. Think of letting the energy of the breath act as an internal massage throughout the body, particularly in the region of the muscles surrounding the eyes.

1. With your eyes closed, lift your fingers to your eyelids and softly, with butterfly-light touch, massage the area of the eye socket up to the eyebrow.
2. When the eyes feel relaxed, open them.
3. Now slowly slide eyes from left to right back and forth as if reading words on a page or following a tennis match.
4. Then change the eye movement to up and down as if watching a ball bounce from floor to ceiling and back. Keep the movement slow.
5. Finally roll your eyes around, first several slow counterclockwise circles, then several in a clockwise direction. Keep the head still throughout these exercises, moving only the eyes.

After you have done the above exercises with both eyes simultaneously, rest one eye at a time and let the open eye follow the same routine outlined above. Now lift your fingers again to lightly massage along the eyebrow from the bridge of the nose outward. Let your fingers travel past the eyebrow and gently upward. Repeat this movement several times. If you have time, you may wish to follow the exercises with 5 minutes of covering the eyes either with an eye pillow or with cooled teabags.

These exercises are a marvelous way to relax the eyes, especially if you have eye fatigue from a long stretch of driving or staring at the computer. There are also wonderful herbal teas that support visual health such as eyebright tea. You may wish to purchase one of these at your local health food store, as well as an eye pillow if eye strain is a frequent factor in your life. Foods rich in beta-carotene feed the eyes, so you may also want to increase your intake of carrots and sweet potatoes to keep your eyes healthy. Vitamins A, C, and E are also a great way to keep your eyes looking out for you longer.

Ginseng may be considered one of the most well known Chinese herbs in the alternative medicine market. It has been used in China for many centuries because of the benefits that it brings to man. This root is commonly found in products that revive energy. It can increase stamina and vigor especially in men. Some varieties of ginseng are used to treat the common cold while others are used as a beauty enhancer. Aside from these advantages, ginseng may also be used to supplement a weight loss diet. Ginseng has the ability to act as a thermogenic. It increases bodily heat therefore increasing metabolism and the conversion of fat into muscle.

Recent research has found that the some varieties and components of this herb aid in treating obesity and diabetes. In December 2008, the Phytotheraphy Research Journal published the results of their study on ginseng for weight loss. The study confirmed that ginsenoside Rg3, a constituent of red ginseng, does not let the cells fully absorb and store fat. Wild ginseng also appeared to hinder obesity when extracts of the said variety were administered to obese mice during the study.

Dang shen is another variety of ginseng that is observed to have the same anti-obesity effect. The said variety can be found in most commercially sold weight loss supplements. Dang shen increases metabolism and improves digestion. It aids in the conversion of fat into muscle. It is also an energizer and is commonly given to those experiencing fatigue. Other than that, dang shen ginseng also has the ability to increase blood count and hemoglobin and is good for those with anemia. It is also used to help diabetics because of its ability to help the body replenish fluids. Ginseng lowers glucose levels in the blood that lessen the production of insulin. Insulin is the hormone that signals the body to store fat.

Ginseng is commercially sold in capsules or as tea. Only the scientifically tested varieties of ginseng are sold in herbal stores. It is usually recommended to take 200 milligrams a day. Ginseng cannot replace a weight loss diet and exercise regimen. Therefore, to get the most out of the weight loss benefits of ginseng, it should be taken while continuing the prescribed weight loss diet and exercise routine.

It should be noted that ginseng might produce side affects, although this is not the same in all people. Side effects include insomnia, skin rashes, diarrhea, and menstrual cycle irregularities in women. If there are no side effects encountered, dosage may be increased to 300 milligrams a day. As the body adjusts its system to the ginseng intake, vigorous exercise may be performed since ginseng has the ability to lessen feelings of fatigue.

Taking ginseng as tea may not be as effective. The undesirable taste makes consumers add sweeteners that eventually defeat the purpose of weight loss. If this is the case, artificial sweeteners may be used. Taking in ginseng while on other medications may also counter its weight loss effect.

The benefits of yoga are plentiful. Yoga is known for increasing strength and flexibility while helping to decrease stress and athletic injuries. If there is someone on your list who is interested in getting started practicing yoga, there are some great gifts you can purchase that will help them get going. See the guide below for how to purchase gifts for the beginning yoga.

Step 1:
Get the gear. The good news is, yoga doesn’t require a lot of equipment. A beginning yogi needs a mat and some mat cleaner. Go to and find several choices of mats for $49.00. A few options include the Flower Power mat and the Peace Prayer mat, but if those don’t suit your yogi’s personality, there are other choices. The Wicked Witch Hazel Cleaner for $16.00 will help your recipient keep their mat clean and sanitized.

Step 2:

It’s in the bag. You’ll need to get the yoga learner on your list a bag to keep their mat in. sells a simple embroidered yoga mat bag for $20.99. The bag is small, portable, well made and comes in various colors such as coffee brown, wine, and pink. The embroidery options include the words Peace, Harmony, or I love yoga, among other options.

Step 3:
Clothes to fit the part. If you’re feeling generous (and you know your gift recipient’s size) you can try to purchase some yoga clothes, but be warned, they can be pricey. has a large selection of yoga pants, capris, shorts, leggings, and tanks. (A beginning yogi can usually suffice with some comfy sweat material pants for the time being.)

Step 4:
Yogis need models. Someone new to yoga needs to see the poses being modeled for them by a real person. At you can purchase the DVD titled AM PM Yoga for Beginners for $14.99. The AM routines are designed to awaken the mind and body; whereas the PM routines are meant to help you release stress and get to sleep relaxed.

Step 5:
Resources are resourceful. Yoga beginners can benefit from a book as a guide. At you can purchase the book 28 Day Yoga Exercise Plan by Richard Hittleman for only $14.00. The 28 day guide boasts that beginners can spend a half hour a day learning the practice, but claims that it’s also good for those returning to the practice. The book design was well thought out, as it even lays flat for use while practicing.

Step 6:
Music is a must. At you can purchase the Yoga Motions White Swan Yoga Masters Vol. 4 CD for $16.98. This CD features selections by various artists; the website says the selections were chosen by Lauren Peterson, who is a nationally recognized yoga practitioner whose client base includes many entertainers and athletes.

Step 7:
Set the mood with incense. Some people who practice yoga like to burn incense while they are practicing. A nice gift for a beginning yogi can be found at The Puja Buddha Tibetan Incense Travel Altar Box Set is $36.00 and was made in Nepal. It includes a 3” herbal Buddha statue, totala seeds, sandalwood resin incense, a hand-glazed terracotta leaf burner and a story card.

If your gift recipient wishes to wrap their mind and body around the practice of yoga, you won’t go wrong by purchasing the gifts above for him or her. The beginning yogi will surely catch the yoga bug, and in no time you’ll find yourself shopping for gifts for the advanced yogi.

Thanks to Katie Couric, awareness of colon cancer and other diseases related to a dirty colon has dramatically increased. And now, more and more Americans and other people around the world are becoming interested in getting a colonoscopy. You may be among these people. But before you undergo this test, it will be better to get acquainted with its benefits and possible side effects.

Despite the side effects of colonoscopy, more and more people, like Katie Couric, have undergone the colonoscopy process. The following benefits pushed them to continue the process and disregard its possible side effects:

* Effective colorectal cancer screening. Colorectal cancer is the second deadliest cancer in the world. However, only about 50 percent of the population has undergone colonoscopy.
* Colorectal polyps diagnosis and treatment. Colorectal polyps are the seeds of colorectal cancer. So before the polyps become cancer, it will be better to treat these immediately. Colonoscopy can diagnose the presence of polyps. More than that, this process is capable of removing the polyps too.
* Other colon problems diagnosis and treatment. Many experts say that the colon is among the most common source of deadly diseases, discomforts, and simple health problems. However, the colon is also one of the most neglected parts of the body. This is why with colonoscopy, the doctors can identify whether your colon is healthy or not. Other colon problems like colitis, colorectal lining inflammation, and colon bleeding can be diagnosed too. These simple colon problems can possibly be treated through colonoscopy as well.

Despite these benefits, many people still have second thoughts whether to undergo a colonoscopy or not. Just like many other effective procedures, the colonoscopy has its own side effects too. Here are some colonoscopy drawbacks:

* Disruption of the colon’s nature. Experts say that frequent colonoscopy may damage the natural work of the colon. Frequent drinking of laxatives or enemas can also damage the natural processes of the colon.
* Abnormal stools. People with already disrupted stools may experience worsening bowel movements if colonoscopy is done more than the recommended frequency.
* Colon complications. Though rare, it is still possible that the patient gets an infection or ulceration after the colonoscopy.
* Increased blood clotting risks. This may happen by taking anesthesia.
* False sense of colon health security. Though effective, some doctors may still miss the presence of small and large tumors. This usually happens if the doctor diagnoses a lot of patients in a day, making him unable to accurately perform colonoscopy.
* Excessive dehydration. Colonoscopy requires the use of a laxative and other drugs like golytely to clean up the colon for more accurate diagnosis.
* Bloating, cramps, and flatulence.
* Chronic constipation.

Enema, laxative, golytely, and other colonoscopy drawbacks are not so bad as to withdraw from undergoing colonoscopy. Katie Couric and more advocates of colon cancer awareness believe that these side effects are nothing compared to a life that can be saved by early detection and treatment of possible colorectal cancer.

The final say is always yours, anyway. Will you be brave enough like Katie Couric and disregard laxatives, enemas, and golytely? Or will you be too scared to face the side effects for your own wellness? Just keep in mind that whatever you choose, it is always better to seek a doctor’s advice.

Boxing is known as an extreme sport, but not many people know that rigorous training and exercise using this sport can make you lose weight. Boxing is a great way to reduce your body weight and burn lots and lots of calories in your system. A study shows that boxing burns about 102 calories in just fifteen minutes in terms of calorie expenditure. This means that in over a year, this fitness program or workout would burn a total of 37,000 or more calories in just twelve months, which is an equivalent of 10.6 pounds of fats in your body.

A boxing workout does not just help you maintain the normal body weight possible. It also makes you strong. It strengthens your bones and tones up the different upper and lower muscles of your body.

The question is, how to lose weight fast while in a boxing workout. It is essential to follow a healthy diet and eating plan. A great range of vitamins, minerals and other nutrition should be taken into account while maintaining fitness with boxing workouts. This is because a well-nourished body will most likely lose weight quicker. Diet-compliance improves as seen during weight and body measurements each week.

Boxing may not be the prime exercise we think about to would enable us to lose weight. It may not be as fun as it might have initially seemed. Regular people, like boxers, should maintain peak physical condition. Flexibility training, aerobic exercises and the likes keep the heart in shape, while weight-training builds muscle and keeps endurance high.

Tae Bo is a mimic of how boxers move in the ring. It can be used for losing weight. It is a kickboxing workout that was made popular by videos, which are uploaded by gyms and YMCAs offering kickboxing sessions. Customers are very fond of this type of workout. A lot of those who want to lose weight
do this boxing workout since it is more enjoyable. This may also be done in preparation for formal boxing training.

Take note of the required demands for each type of workout. Workouts normally include weightlifting, jumping ropes, and punching and hitting punching bags as intensely as you can. Most Tae Bo sessions take you throughout the class as if you were really boxing with someone and the objective is to be in motion as much as possible. After the training and weight loss session, you will have a greater appreciation for what boxers go through while in training.

Boxing and Tae Bo are both great ways to lose weight. However, boxing will result in greater long-term effects while Tae Bo is designed to mimic the kickboxer motions in the ring so may not be as effective. It’s your own preference and the best way of losing weight is to couple determination with an exercise that you enjoy and do on a regular basis.

You want to lose weight and are trying very hard to do what you have to do religiously. You watch what you eat. You count the calories. You go through an exercise regimen. You do everything to keep off the weight. There are, however, challenges that test you and your desire to keep good on the promise of losing the weight. These challenges are called weight loss sabotage.

Here are some examples of weight loss sabotage:

* Someone brings you a pot of home cooked food, which is intricately prepared.
* You are invited to a party where fried and fatty foods are served.
* People either laugh or frown at the idea of you trying to lose weight.
* An eye-roll as a reaction to you engaging in a weight loss program.
* You go to an all-you-can-eat buffet where all the food is tempting and scrumptious.
* Some people tell you negative things like the possibility of maintaining the desired weight after you shed some off.
* Some people will make fun of you by tempting to offer you sweets, chips and other food that you have been successful in not eating.

This so-called weight loss sabotage really dampens the spirits. You know that these run counter to what you hope to achieve. You may either feel encouraged enough to take the challenges or give up.

Should you decide to take the challenges and deal with weight loss sabotage, you have to have a fool-proof plan to face these challenges.

1. Be able to communicate what you feel with others. Talk to the people who do things that seem to belittle your effort to live a healthier lifestyle. The people may be your spouse, or a partner, or even close family member like parents and siblings. Let them know why you want to loss weight and how they can help you achieve positive results.
2. Ask people for support. Asking for support would probably stop the loss weight sabotage. You do not have to convince them why you need to loss weight; just let them know that you need their support.
3. Ask these people to join you in your journey to live a healthier life. You may even be able to encourage these people to join you in your journey of having a healthier lifestyle. Not only would the benefits be for you, but for them as well. In doing so, they understand you better. It is more fun too when you and your love ones do this together rather than facing the challenges alone.
4. Be strong enough to overcome the challenges to your goals. If, however, these people do not support you nor join your cause in losing weight, you have to be strong enough to stand up to the challenges and prove that you do have what it takes to lose the weight.

In dealing with weight loss sabotage, keeping sight of your goals and not giving up when there are challenges should always be your priority. You may feel that weight loss sabotage hinders you in reaching your ideal weight, but if you do not give these time to prosper, you will be successful in the end, despite the reactions of people around you.

Plastic surgery is definitely something you don't want to skimp out on. But that doesn't mean you need to spend yourself out of house and home for it. Here are few tips that should help you to save money on your plastic surgery.

Step 1:
Go with saline implants instead of silicone ones. If you're looking to save money on plastic surgery on your breasts, you should opt for the cheaper (though just as safe) saline implants. Although they don't have as much of a natural look or feel, they have a lower complication rate post-surgery. And they'll save you at least $1000 compared to traditional silicone implants.

Step 2:
Consider trying Sculptra instead of more common fillers. Although this isn't fully approved by the FDA for most cosmetic uses, some plastic surgeons like to use Sculptra off-label. It works to fill in hollow spots under your eyes and other areas of your face that may appear gaunt. An added bonus, Sculptra fillers tend to last from 3 - 5 years, whereas traditional fillers may last only 1 year. You'll save thousands over the longer life of this plastic surgery filler.

Step 3:
Choose the traditional form of liposuction. Ultrasonic liposuction and even laser liposuction do not show much better results than the traditional form of liposuction. For relatively the same outcome, you can get rid of your unwanted fat and save a few thousand dollars by choosing this more traditional method of this plastic surgery.

Step 4:
Try an alternative to laser treatments. An obvious way to save money on plastic surgery is to go without it! If you want to improve the look of your face, you can get just about the same look with a chemical peel as you can with traditional laser facial treatments. A chemical peel like the Blue Peel comes with a significantly smaller price tag and you'll still get the benefits of a younger, healthier looking face.

Step 5:
Spread out your Botox. You might be using more Botox than you need to. See if you can save money on this type of plastic surgery by spreading out your Botox use. Instead of putting 20 units into your forehead, why not see if you're still satisfied with 10 units in your forehead? That leaves you an extra 10 unit to put in your chin, your lip or your cheek! It makes sense to get the most out of your money, so don't overdo this cosmetic surgery injection. You'll quickly realize how much money you can save by reducing the number of Botox injections you get.

Step 6:
Approach your insurance company. Now, obviously your insurance company isn't going to foot the bill for your breast augmentation, butt lift or tummy tuck. But, if you have a genuine need for plastic surgery, you may just be able to get some financial support with those bills from your insurance company. You just need to show a need for the surgery, or proof that corrective plastic surgery is beneficial and necessary to your health. So if your breasts are too large and cause you back pain, or if your droopy eyelids inhibit your vision, you can likely have your health insurance cover all or at least a portion of this expense. If you can prove it, this is a great way to save yourself a bundle of money on plastic surgery.

An aerobic workout is a workout that involves heightening the body's consumption of oxygen. When you engage in aerobic exercise, your body uses up oxygen faster than normal, causing you to breathe more rapidly or more deeply. Exercises that are considered aerobic include walking, running, swimming, and dancing. Weightlifting, yoga, and other strength-training exercises are not considered aerobic, as they do not cause you to take in and consume more oxygen than normal. These types of workouts are called anaerobic exercises.

The distinction between aerobic and anaerobic exercises can sometimes be difficult to see. For example, running is considered an aerobic workout, but sprinting is not. In order for your workout to be considered aerobic, you must keep up a high level of oxygen consumption - indicated by a raised heart rate and heavier or deeper breathing - for a relatively long period of time. Sprinting involves short bursts of exertion followed by long periods of inactivity, so your body is only burning extra oxygen for a short amount of time. During a long run, however, you are consistently in motion, and your body is consistently consuming extra oxygen. The key to an aerobic workout is the extended period of time in which you are active.

When planning out an aerobic workout, there are a few important things to keep in mind. An aerobic workout is most effective when you warm up for five to ten minutes, exercise for at least twenty minutes, and then cool down for another five to ten minutes. A warm-up should involve a brief, low-intensity exercise (such as jogging in place for a minute or two) followed by stretching. Stretch all the muscle groups you are going to use in your workout (legs if you are running, arms if you are swimming, etc.) to reduce your chances of pulling or straining a muscle. During the main part of your workout - the aerobic part - you want to make sure that your heart rate is up and that your breathing is heavier than normal. This can be accomplished in countless ways, but you should be moving for the whole workout, and the workout should last at least twenty minutes. After the main part of your workout, you should take the time to cool down. A cool-down involves a few minutes of reduced-intensity movements, such as walking at a slow pace after running, followed by stretching. Stretching after a workout will reduce next-day soreness.

Perhaps the flu is wrecking havoc on your office or dorm, or you have a weakened immune system due to asthma, chronic disease or cancer treatments. Perhaps you just want to have a hardier immune system. Several supplements can boost your immunity.

1. Assess why your immunity is poor. If you know why you are frequently sick, such as you have heart or lung problems and take medications that leave you more susceptible to illness, or you have a known immune deficiency, then it is easier to establish a regimen to counteract the effects of your health and medication. But if you are constantly getting sick and you do not know why, it is important to see a doctor to rule out any underlying serious medical condition that may be impacting your immunity. However, if you are just trying to avoid getting that nasty cold that is going around your office but are otherwise in good health, you can likely proceed to supplement your immunity with select vitamins.

2. Select supplements geared toward your specific immunity need. Have you been exposed to an infectious sick person or are you just hoping to build your immune system in general? When you get sick, do you always feel one symptom first, such as a sore throat, coughing or an upset stomach? This will give you a general guideline of what part of your system is the weakest, since it succumbed to the illness or showed evidence of being impaired by the illness first. While the following four supplements will help both fight off a recent exposure or limit the effects of illness, you can also reduce how badly you feel during an illness by assessing the specific weakness - for example, respiratory or digestive - and lessen your immune risk by strengthening that specific aspect of your immunity.

- For both the short term, to counteract germ exposure, and for long term immunity benefits, Vitamin C is a basic immunity supplement. Vitamin C has long been considered an important part of fighting a cold, but its proactive ability to prevent you from getting sick is also well established. For boosting your immunity, you should attempt to get Vitamin C in its purest form. Currently some nutritionists, who are working with cancer patients concerned about rebuilding their immunity while in chemotherapy, encourage getting vitamin C in high quantity from very fresh sources such as certain edible flowers. This is why you will often see rose hips associated with Vitamin C due to the high C content. (Wikipedia defines rose hips as "the aggregate fruit of the rose, a berry-like structure called a rose hip." Essentially, high quantities of vitamin C concentrate in these berry-like structures, and it is viewed as a higher dosage of vitamin C that can be better tolerated for consumption.) Purer, concentrated forms of vitamin C, such as rose hips or a form called C Ester (Ascorbyl Palmitate) are generally tolerated in much higher quantities in the system without side effects, so you can take more of it and derive more benefit. If when you are first exposed to illness, you take vitamin C regularly for the first several hours and then again the next day until the risk of your exposure is over, you most likely can avoid the cold or bug to which you were exposed. Vitamin C also works as an antioxidant, allowing your body to purge itself of waste and bacteria. For any use of antioxidants with the intention of reducing the effects of a specific exposure to illness, drinking plenty of fluids and antioxidant use helps flush the system of the germs, hopefully before any take hold in your body. Vitamin C with rose hips is readily available at drugstores and C Ester is found at Vitamin Shoppe and other retailers.

- Antioxidants generally help the body function better, including the immune system - directly and indirectly - by aiding the lungs, liver and kidneys to help blood, oxygen and nutrients to be able to reach the tissues of your muscles and organs, helping them function optimally. Alpha Lipoic Acid is considered the wonder antioxidant; it is even being considered in studies for the treatment of HIV/AIDS. It helps purge germs from your system; in studies, it has killed germs on contact in laboratory testing. You can also take Alpha Lipoic Acid in higher doses, meaning you can take a daily dose for your overall immune health, and an extra dose upon being exposed to any illness.

- Acidophilus is best known as what makes yogurt good for you (the "good" bacteria in your system) but to really address immunity problems, you need to take it daily. Best known for counteracting yeast infections in the system, studies show a direct correlation to Acidophilus and other probotics improving immunity. While for some people eating yogurt is enough Acidophilus, if you prefer not to eat yogurt, Acidophilus is also available in pill form. Acidophilus is especially worth considering if many of the times you get sick have a digestive system or gastrointestinal component. While it will likely not affect matters one way or another for an immediate expose to a specific illness or sick person, it will build your body's defense mechanism against bad bacteria by strengthening the good bacteria in your system. Recent studies indicate that yogurt is especially helpful to those on cortisone medications, such as asthmatics, to help them build immunity. Nature's Made makes an Acidophilus pill without any yeast or gluten, which aids in its effectiveness.

- Green tea has a dual immunityp-building purpose of working as an antioxidant and to strengthen your system and rebuild healthier cells. It comes as a liquid or supplement pill form, and a concentrated liquid extract. White tea and red tea both have more antioxidant properties than green, but are lacking the cell rebuilding properties. Green tea supplements work as an antioxidant for concerns over a specific exposure, giving you both the benefit of the liquid to flush your system and the antioxidant to fight germs. It also works to strengthen red blood cells, helping those with chronic illnesses or immunity issues gain strength, even while undergoing chemotherapy. Green tea on a long-term basis replaces damaged cells with healthy ones. For example, the intestine replaces its cells once a year, so if you drank green tea in that time, you would build a healthier intestinal system over the course of the year, giving you a better ability to fight illness. Natrol makes a reasonably priced green tea supplement pill that is easy to swallow.

3. Equip yourself to take supplements immediately after exposure to sickness. Taking a daily pre-emptive supplement helps protect you from your daily exposures to illness, but it is helpful if you can take extra doses of Vitamin C and Alpha Lipoic Acid as close as possible to a specific exposure to limit the effects of the illness. If you are able to, carry in your briefcase or bag an emergency vitamin pack of chewable vitamin C and follow up with Alpha Lipoic and a green tea, available in pre-made bags or even commercially sold teas if you are not at home. Also wash your hands and don't touch your face - especially your eyes nose and mouth - after being exposed to crowds or a specific sick person, until you can adequately supplement your system to cope with the exposure. While not necessarily conducive to being carried around, powdered vitamin C is easy to stir into a drink, or even take a tiny pinch immediately after exposure to airborne illnesses. Yale dermatologist Dr. Nicholas Perricone, of Perricone skin care fame, stated in a documentary filmed at Yale Medical School that he had a lack of energy and immunity problems in college, but that taking Vitamin C, along with other supplements, completely changed his life. He states that now in his practice, he often takes a pinch of powdered C Ester Vitamin C between patients for a boost of energy and to counteract any illness he has been exposed to. Chewable Vitamin C is good to carry in an emergency when you have been exposed to someone who is sick. Emergen-C is a commercial powder packet that makes a flavored drink with a high concentration of vitamin C, some zinc and a bit of Alpha Lipoic Acid. Commercial preparations exist such as Airborne, a product designed for when you are on a plane or in a crowds with sick people. If you have any medical conditions and chose to use any prepared product with a proprietary ingredient list instead of vitamin tablets, make sure to ask your doctor if these preparations are a viable option for you.