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Category: Health & wellness (Page 1 of 2)

How To Get Rid of Cramps: 12 Proven ways!

How to get rid of cramps is never that easy as it is considered. Many women have cramps before and during their periods. Cramps are normal and are treatable.

Why cramps occurs?

Periods cramps can be really painful & uncomfortable. Period cramps happen for a reason. During the period, the uterus gets contracted that means it squeezes or cramps up. This makes the lining come off the walls of the uterus and leave the body. When uterus squeezes, it helps the period blood flow out.

Most women get cramps during their periods at some point in their lives. It usually feels like throbbing pains in your lower belly. These cramps can start a couple of days before your period and sometimes remain throughout the periods. Generally, Cramps are awful during the first few days of periods when the period flow is the excess.

You can get cramps as soon as you get your first period. Your periods can be less or more painful throughout life. For many women, cramps happen less painful as they grow older.

Menstrual cramps can be painful, nasty, or irritating, but cramps are common.

How To Get Rid of Cramps?

How To Get Rid of Cramps 12 proven ways
Why My Periods are Late

What helps with cramps?

  1. Over-the-counter pain medicine can help you. Always follow the instructions on the bottle. Always consult with your doctor before taking any pain killer medication.
  2. Exercise.
  3. Putting a heating pad on the abdomen.
  4. Taking a hot bath.
  5. Having an orgasm.
  6. Rest.
  7. Massage your tummy with essential oils
  8. Avoid Caffeine and Salty food
  9. Hormonal birth control (like the pill, patch).
  10. Acupuncture and acupressure.
  11. Certain vitamins and herbs like vitamin B1, fish oil, fenugreek, ginger, and zinc sulfate.
  12. Stay Hydrated

Cramps are a common part of getting your period, but sometimes women have period cramps that are so painful it becomes difficult to do everyday chores too(like go to school or work). If your period pain is really awful, and over-the-counter medicine does not work, consult with the doctor. They can help you by other ways to manage the pain, or can check to see “is there something more serious going on”.

Cramps that are really painful may be a sign of:

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease: An infection in your reproductive organs.

Endometriosis: a condition of growing uterus line outside of the uterus.

Adenomyosis: when the lines of the uterus grow into the muscle wall of the uterus.

Uterine fibroids: non-cancerous tumors that grow inside your uterus, in the walls of your uterus, or on the outside of your uterus.

Conclusion:

When getting older you may face these types of cramps. As time passes these can get worsen. They may happen for longer than other cramps.

Period cramps are very common, but there are times when they can interfere with your day-to-day life. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to ease the pain and discomfort caused by these pesky cramps.

If, however, the pain doesn’t go away after a couple of days or is so extreme that you have difficulty functioning, be sure to follow up with your doctor.

Read Next Why My Periods Are Late ?- Nine major reasons.

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Why My Periods are Late?-Nine Major Reasons.

During your usual morning routine, you open your cabinet, spot a box of tampons in the back, and you suddenly realize you’re late. “When was my last period?” you think as you try to remember the last time you needed to reach for that box. The Panic takes over as your mind thinks straight to pregnancy. Pregnancy is a possible reason for “Why my periods are late”, there might be other factors related to your health or lifestyle that are causing the delay.

The main reason behind missed periods can be an imbalance in your body.

Why My periods are late? –Nine Major Reasons.


Breastfeeding


Your period may not appear after your baby is born, but don’t be alarmed! If you are breastfeeding your little one, A Late periods are completely normal. Referred to as lactational amenorrhea, In this phase rhythm of your menstrual cycle gets disrupted. In a few months, your menstrual cycle should be right back on track.

Late periods - Breastfeeding


High-Intensity Exercises


Working exercise into your schedule on a daily basis is great, but excessive exercising could lead to lower levels of estrogen, which is the hormone that regulates the female reproductive process. Many athletes experience secondary amenorrhea, meaning they don’t have a period for six months or longer, from rigorous training.

Lady performing leg press


Weight loss or weight gain


Whether you’re overweight or underweight, any change in pounds can affect your monthly cycle. Common health problems linked to weight and irregular menstruation include eating disorders, such as anorexia and bulimia, and uncontrolled diabetes. If you suspect this might be an issue for you, see your health care provider right away.

Lady with tape on the waist


Stress


A little bit of stress is fine in everyone’s life, but chronic stress can imbalance so many of your body functions. Stress activates the hormone cortisol and pushes your body into survival mode. If you experience prolonged stress in your life, your body can induce amenorrhea and that will prevent your periods.

woman wearing a black dress


Sleep schedule changes

A long traveling or switching suddenly to night shift may prevent your menstrual cycle from starting.
According to a study published in Frontiers in Endocrinology, any disruptions to your circadian rhythm—the internal clock that regulates important cellular processes—can cause you to experience irregular periods.

Woman sleeping on mattress


Medication


If you’re taking a new medication, one of its side effects may be irregular periods. A study on the effect of antipsychotics on menstruation found that amenorrhea occurred because prolactin levels were imbalanced. Birth control medications(such as an IUD, implant, or shot) can also cease your periods.

Late periods- Medicines


Thyroid dysfunction


Issues with your thyroid, such as hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism, can disturb your menstrual cycle. The thyroid produces hormones that help regulate the body’s processes, and if thrown off balance, it can cause you to have missed periods. Luckily, there are effective treatments for thyroid disorders, so see an endocrinologist for a blood test if you think this might be an issue for you.

late periods- Thyroid


Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)


Little is known about what causes this disease, but about five million women in the United States may be affected by PCOS. Like thyroid dysfunction, PCOS can cause a hormonal imbalance in your body, causing missed periods.

Late periods-PCOS


Perimenopause


If you’re entering perimenopause—the first stage of menopause—you may notice your periods occur more infrequently. The Estrogen hormone is causing a decrease in periods.

Late periods-Perimenopause

Takeaways

If you’re experiencing irregular periods, you’re not alone. About nine to 14 percent of women worldwide are affected by menstrual irregularities. With the exception of missing your period while on some contraceptives, it is not normal to go without a period for several months and can be harmful to your health. Visit your physician if your missed periods persist.

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Why Does No Smoking Boost Mental Health?

Smokers die an average of ten years earlier than no smoking person, and that’s not all. If we talk about the United States, 41 thousand people die every year from complications related to secondhand smoke. Anyone who struggles to quit smoking, however, already knows these facts. They have likely heard them or read them over and over again.

Why Does No Smoking Boost Mental Health


Why Does No Smoking Boost Mental Health?

People who smoke often enjoy the action, and many use smoking as a coping mechanism for other underlying mental health problems. Quitting smoking is an enormous hurdle because it isn’t just about getting your nicotine fix. It is also an activity with an adiction.

Those who are 21 or over and trying to quit often find that tobacco alternatives are a helpful tool and tobaccoless dip can be a suitable replacement for the ritual as well as the nicotine in cigarettes. When you use tobaccoless dip, you are not inhaling smoke into your lungs; but you still get many of the same effects of smoking, including nicotine, without the tobacco leaf or stem.

Let’s take a look at some ways smoking affects your mental health, and why the addiction to cigarettes is such a circular problem:

Smoking Makes Changes in Dopamine Production


One of the primary feel-good effects of smoking is the dopamine production a cigarette triggers in your brain. Dopamine release is one of our brain’s primary responses to pleasure, and a deficiency can lead to problems that include depression, working memory issues, and even symptoms of dementia.

When you smoke a cigarette, you get a quick rush of dopamine, and that’s where you get the moment of euphoria—or at the very least, a sense of relaxation.

The problem is, over time, the receptors that trigger a dopamine release in your brain become dependent on the signal from smoking to deliver the goods. Your brain releases less and less dopamine on its own, and you need more cigarettes to get the same effects. It becomes harder and harder to quit smoking because of the lack of independent dopamine production.

Fortunately, you can do things that encourage dopamine release to help get you through the quitting period, and a healthy brain will eventually bounce back to producing the baseline level you were at before you started smoking (usually within about three months). Here are some things that are easy to do and will increase the amount of dopamine in your system:

  • Exercise
  • Getting enough sleep
  • Eating plenty of protein
  • Getting sunlight
  • Listening to music
  • Getting a massage
  • Meditating
  • Laughing with a friend
  • Reducing saturated fats
Man performing dumbel push-ups

Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live in.

Cigarette Cravings Cause Mimic Anxiety


When you want a cigarette, and you can’t smoke one right away, your body starts to experience withdrawal. Many people begin to crave another cigarette before they even put the one they are smoking out. These cravings are early withdrawal symptoms, and they are very similar to anxiety. Symptoms often include:

  • Fatigue
  • Changes in appetite
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Trouble concentrating


People who smoke begin to attribute these symptoms of withdrawal to their personal experience of anxiety, which is why it feels like they need more cigarettes to calm their nerves. In actuality, the smoking is what triggered the anxiety in the first place.

A woman smoking cigarette

You can reduce the anxiety you are experiencing as a result of withdrawal by doing many of the same things that increase dopamine levels in your brain. Exercising, taking deep breaths, talking with friends, and changing your habits around smoking (like drinking coffee) are all good ways to help yourself feel better while you quit.

Smoking Reduces the Effectiveness of Psychoactive Medications


Forty-three percent of the cigarettes smoked in the United States are smoked by people with mental illnesses. Because smoking reduces the effects of most psychoactive drugs, people who smoke must take higher doses for their antidepressants, antianxiety and antipsychotic medications to work properly. If you are on any of these types of medications, it is important to talk to your doctor about the effects of smoking. Once you quit, you may be able to reduce your dosage.

Smoking Causes Unhealthy Coping Habits


The thing many love most about smoking is the feeling that everything is better once you’ve had a cigarette. Bad day at work? Take a smoke break. Tough conversation ahead? Smoke a cigarette. Get bad news? Light up. Bored? Smoke ’em if you got ’em.

It’s difficult to be motivated to develop important coping skills when all you have to do is take a few drags off a cigarette. Everything else seems like so much work! It’s important to remember, though, that a robust set of coping skills will lead to better relationships and more resilience in the face of hardship. Plus, using cigarettes as a way of self-medicating doesn’t work when you are in a situation where you can’t smoke.

Conclusion


Quitting smoking is one of the most difficult hurdles to overcome. On average, smokers attempt to quit 6-11 times before they are successful; but some people try an even greater number of times. The key is to not give up. There is never any shame or blame in slipping up, and it is essential to have support in your efforts.

Say no to cigarette

There are many methods to quit, and it may take time to find the one that is right for you. Some find that quitting cold turkey is the way to go. Others prefer to use a reduction method or a prescription, gum, or a patch. Still, others find a substitute that gives them the nicotine without the lung-damaging tobacco inhalation. However, you choose to start your journey, Accepting No Smoking, and putting the cigarette down gets you one step closer to better health.

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5 Complete Skin Care Tips & How to Glow it.

Focus on skin care tips when you’re just trying to look your best isn’t a simple matter. If you weren’t blessed with trouble-free skin and instead have an overly sensitive type that’s prone to blemishes or acne, then life could be a bit harder.
It’s not necessary to get overly fancy with your personal skincare routine. Just showing your skin a bit caring is often enough. Using a more holistic or gentler approach works better than multiple solutions that could make matters worse.

Here are some suggestions for skin care tips that works wonders.

1. Know Your Skin


Don’t become surprised at a breakout or unexpected irritation.

A beautiful woman

Learn what type of skin you have, how it’s susceptible, and do your best to protect against it.

For instance, if you suffer from acne periodically, then it’s worth acknowledging that vulnerability. Being gentler with your skin is worth the extra time.

Also, looking into whether treatments using ingredients originating from nature are likely to be more soothing. There are several benefits of using aloe vera for acne, for instance, to avoid irritation and calm things down.

2. Using a Quality Cleanser is one of the best skin care tips


Cleansing gets rid of any dirt, oils, and other particles that find their way to your face, neck, and surrounding areas. The more time you spend in public spaces or even out engaging in some well-deserved retail therapy, the greater likelihood that this is going to be a problem for you.

skin cleanser
skin cleansing

We’d recommend cleansing not once, but twice. This avoids using other facial products like creams and makeup that go over the top of any residue that’s not been removed first. If that seems excessive, just know that it’ll likely cause greater skin issues if you don’t cleanse thoroughly.

3. Verify All Your current Beauty Products

It’s all too easy to purchase beauty products in larger sizes, use them slowly, and find they’re past their expiry date. If you’re not careful, it will catch you completely off-guard.

Beauty Product
Beauty Product

Check every beauty product to verify the date when it should be thrown out. Most products last 3 to 6 months only, so use this as a rule of thumb.

Also, while you’re examining each beauty product, look at the ingredients to see what they contain. You may be surprised and decide that certain skincare products don’t meet the standard for caring for your skin. Now’s the time to make that change for the better.

4. Protect Your Skin from the Sun


Everyone needs to get some time out in the sun. It’s great to soak up vitamin D and relax!

Girl sitting in sun
girl sitting in sun

Nevertheless, don’t forget about ensuring your skin is healthy at the same time.

Use sunblock or suncream to block out UVB and UVA sun rays. The protection should SPF 15 or better to be effective enough.

Preventing the sun from damaging the surface of your skin avoids drying it out excessively and premature aging too.

5. Get Enough Sleep


One of the more complete and natural things to do for your whole body is to get enough sleep.

Woman sleeping on mattress

If you’re someone who likes to party the night away, sips on the wine, and suffers for it the next day with bags under the eyes and a worn-out appearance, then that’s a problem.

Understand that you can attend parties without needing to consume too much alcohol or barely making it back before morning. Find an appropriate balance here.

Also, get to bed early enough to ensure you sleep for longer. Try to wake up without an alarm. It’s far more pleasant than being jolted awake by a loud alarm.

Conclusion

Complete skin care tips isn’t only about using the right beauty products. While that certainly helps, being mindful to provide self-care to yourself is just as important.

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How to be Stress Free & Happy: the seven simple ways

If you want to learn simple yet effective ways How to be stress free after a busy day, look no further.

A happy woman

How to be Stress Free


Did you know that approximately 110 million people lose their lives every year due to stress according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention? That is in every 2 seconds, 7 people die. Stress free life has become a luxury these days everyone dreamed of.

Popping a chill pill and relaxing can be so difficult to do in this hectic and fast-paced world that we live in. As an introvert, I find myself getting easily stimulated and stressed out after a long day. There are times when I’m so on edge that I forget to consciously breathe.

My unease was putting a strain on my happiness, and I didn’t want to be one of the 110 million people stressing themselves to death, literally. So, I set out to find natural and simple ways to stress free and win the battle against stress.

1. Work Out & Any Physical Activity


Whether it’s walking, swimming, dancing, or cycling, a good workout will take your mind off your worries. Not only will your mind thank you for the break, but your body will also be happy, too.

Lady performing leg press

Stress can really take a toll on you, decreasing your energy and making it difficult to think and focus.

Essentially, the endorphins hormon released during a workout session as natural stress relievers.

Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live

It only takes five minutes of aerobic exercise to stimulate anti-anxiety effects. If that is all it takes, imagine how amazing you will feel after an hour’s worth of exercise.

When I was in college, I would go to the gym every weekend to mentally prepare myself for the next week.

2. Aromatherapy


Speaking of endorphins, if you are not in the mood to get active, endorphins can be released with the help of aromatherapy.

We take our senses for granted, but when it comes to aromatherapy the sense of smell and sense of touch are powerful.

You can add essential oils to your bath water, massage oil recipe, soaps, lotions, body butter, shampoo, conditioner, and cleaning products. There are also essential oil candles, or you can drop essential oils in your diffuser.

The options are almost endless. I am a huge fan of Lavender oil and enjoy making essential oil blends for myself, family, and friends.

Cent and towel massage

3. Meditation


Most of us struggle with sitting still and doing absolutely nothing. I hope to get to a point where I spend at least an hour meditating every day, but for now, 20 minutes seems to be enough.

What I can say is that meditation works.

There is no such thing as a perfect meditation session, but it does take practice to add it and keep it in your daily routine.

Listening to guided meditations or soothing music or simply concentrating on an object can help you focus on the present moment and release the tension.

Lady doing meditation

4. Reading Books


Reading for pleasure isn’t that much of a common act anymore. I’ve recently returned to picking up a book and reading something that isn’t a text message or notification on my phone.

Personally, I prefer to have a physical book in my hand, but electronic books can be easily accessed on a mobile device for convenience.

When reading for pleasure, avoid reading anything that will make you more anxious like a school textbook or newspaper. I had to take a break from reading news articles and forums because what I was reading was upsetting me. So I turned to uplifting books instead.

Take care of your mind by nourishing it with good books.

A woman is reading book

5: Write or Talk it Out


You can vent to someone you absolutely trust like a family member, best friend, therapist, or coach.

Holding things in doesn’t help, and only makes your situation worse. When I am able to let go and reveal everything without feeling judged, I immediately feel lighter.

You may also find it helpful to talk it out with someone who may be the cause of your stress. This person may not even realize that he or she is a trigger for you until you speak up. Of course, this works best with someone you feel comfortable and safe with.

If you have absolutely no one to confide in or rather not open up to anyone, consider dusting off your journal and writing your thoughts down.

I have a few journals that I use for different purposes and it seems to be just as beneficial as talking to another person.

Pen and Paper

6. Breathing Exercises


How often is it that you remember to breathe? Think about it; when’s the last time you took a moment to focus on exhaling and inhaling? You are probably not used to breathing mindfully because our bodies take care of that insanely important function without us having to think about it.

When we are stressed or having an anxiety attack, we tend to take short shallow breaths that don’t help with relaxation.

Practice mindful breathing by inhaling and exhaling slowly and deeply.

7. Music


The type of music we listen to affects our mood, so when looking for some relaxation, it’s best to listen to music or sounds that relax us. Music with slower tempos can bring your heart rate and pulse down.

I know that music and certain sounds (birds chirping, rain pattering, waves crashing) instantly distract me from my outward problems.

In addition to listening to music, you can sing and dance your butt off. There are some songs where you just can’t help but dance.

If you are in the car and the commute makes you anxious, turn up the radio and sing it as you mean it.

Girl wearing headphone

Conclusion:

Happiness is a choice. It’s funny how living stress free can be so simple, but a lot of ugly factors get in the way and sidetrack us from tranquility.

Not only does constant negative stress and overwhelm lead to moodiness and unhappiness, but it also triggers a line of other health problems. Now that you have some ways to be stress free, don’t let your worries overpower you and put you at risk of misery and illness.

Read next some suggested articles for you.

5 Important Methods to Improve Your Brain Health,

The Seven Love Languages.

Meditation benefits and continuing with it.

Image source- pixabay

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5 Important Methods to Improve Your Brain Health

Many people believe that a decline in mental acuity is merely a part of getting older. Yet, aging is not the only key turning factor in cognitive decline. It is our lifestyle that plays a role of paramount importance. When we fail to follow a nutritious diet, a lack of sleep and exercise routine, constant stress, smoking, and drinking too much alcohol and environmental pollutants can all contribute to damaging our brain health. Fortunately, mental deterioration is reversible!

Brain


5 Effective Brain Health Tips


How can we invest in our brain health? The thing is, our brain is dynamic and has massive potential and the ability to transform at any point throughout our entire life’s journey.

In essence, you always have the power to boost your brain function, protect your brain from damage, and redress the effects of aging! That is, of course, if you’re mindfully willing to fuel the brain and fine-tune your everyday small yet impactful decisions.

Here are five tiny enhancements you can make that can lead to significant improvement in your brain health:


1. Eating Healthy Fats


Some fats do have a bad rep, but let’s focus on the fats that help us improve brain health.


Do you know what feeds your brain? Think healthy fats such as omega-3 fatty acids that stem from brain fuel foods like:
salmon
flaxseed
walnuts
Foods linked to better brain health

Healthy fats improve brain health by offering enhanced cognitive performance, ridding you off mental and mood disorders.
These fatty acids support brain plasticity, also known as neuroplasticity (brain’s ability to change and adapt as a result of experience), which could then improve the expression of several molecules related to learning and memory.

Half walnut


Did you know that the deficiency of omega-3 fatty acids in people linked to a heightened risk of disorders like dementia, depression, dyslexia, ADD (attention-deficit disorder), bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia?
Another large study pointed out that those who consumed more omega-3s had increased the volume of the brain’s gray matter, specifically in the hippocampus –– the region of our brain correlated with self- introspection, awareness, and compassion.
So if you wonder how to sharpen your mind, start with giving it the right brain food by getting more healthy fats.
If you’re not sure how to include these specific foods into your food regimen, you can look into and buy omega-3 supplements at your local health food store.
Study Suggests that having Green Tea is Linked to a Longer and Healthier Life.


Are you a fan of green tea?

When it comes to improving brain health, consider green tea a miracle worker –– a super-rich source of nutrients, minerals, and antioxidants, green tea is recognized for its capability to protect our body from free radicals.
Drinking green tea improves brain health.
Green tea can also boost your body’s natural fat-burning processes and increase the body’s metabolic rate. By merely drinking green tea regularly, you can also improve cognitive function and boost your working memory.

In one curious 2014 study, researchers worked with twelve healthy volunteers who consumed either a whey-based beverage that contained 27.5 grams of green tea extract or an analogous drink but without the green tea. Then all the participants worked on memory tasks while undergoing fMRI.

The results revealed that those people who got the green tea extract showed improved connectivity between the frontal cortex and the parietal part of the brain performing dramatically better on the tests.

2. Impact of Water on Brain health


You are right; drinking water deserves a special mention because it is one of the best ways we can take care of our brain health.

Numerous studies proved that dehydration not only affects our physical wellbeing but also influences our mood and ability to think clearly.

Did you know that lack of water has been linked to reduced working memory capacity, decreased mental performance, and depression?

“One research found that drinking water has a “significant impact” on reducing depression and helping with concentration. It can also help with sleep disorders. One more research found that when we are dehydrated, the subjects were more cranky and fatigued. Not drinking enough water can also cause headaches, constipation, sleepiness, anxiety and confusion.

It is important to drink two liters of water a day –– which is about eight glasses. This is to stay hydrated and mentally alert. True, we get a lot of water from our food, so no, it is not all about buying bottled water. However, mild dehydration can be equivalent to one small bottle of water.

If your mind is feeling slightly sluggish and foggy, drink more water.

3. Brain Health Foods’ impact on it is more than we realize.


What we choose to eat has an immense impact on how we think and feel.
While it’s probably not very wise to feel slightly obsessed over diet. It’s vital to understand the essential connection between food and our brain health.
“For example, extensive research had shown that children who ate breakfast before school exhibited better memory and acquisition skills while learning. Another big study found that people who kept healthier diet habits had a reduced risk of cognitive decline as they got older.”

Food is our fuel for the brain, as well as for the rest of our body.

“The brain is an energy-hungry organ. Despite comprising only 2 percent of the body’s weight, the brain gobbles up more than 20 percent of daily energy intake. Because the brain needs such high amounts of energy. The foods we consume affect brain function, including everything from learning and memory to emotions.
Some foods serve us as brain function boosters and proved time and again to improve brain health, protect against age-associated cognitive decline, and improve focus. Here are a few great things you may consider to double down on:
Nuts are a rich source of magnesium, a mineral that improves short and long-term memory.


Broccoli is rich with vitamin K that enhances cognitive performance and bolsters brainpower.
Pumpkin seeds give our body zinc, which is critical for boosting thinking skills and memory.


Blueberries are great at supporting neuron-to-neuron communication in the brain and may help prevent memory loss.
Dark chocolate proved to increase attention and focus related brain characteristics.
Asparagus, leafy greens, olives, whole grains –– are full of vitamin E, which can help prevent cognitive decline, especially in older people.
When you include these brain health-boosting foods into your diet, you may be able to build brainpower in ways that you can’t from other strategies alone.

4. Importance of Sleep for Brain Health


Sleep deficiency is terrible for our minds.
Prolonged sleep deprivation makes us less alert and leads to poor mental performance; sleep deficiency has similar effects on the mind, similar to being drunk! In other words, tiny amounts of sleep deprivation seem to have the same or worse effects to effects being over the legal alcohol limit for driving.

Sleeping lady and alarm clock


But does it mean we all need our eight hours of sleep, though? Not quite. We need different amounts of sleep to function, and we need less as we get older. There’s also extensive research suggesting that how we approach sleep and think about it makes a massive difference to our mental performance.
Learn to listen to your mind. If you happen to feel like you’ve had enough sleep. Even if you only slept for six hours. Don’t worry, and if you haven’t, then try not to lose your sleep over it.


5. Importance of Exercise for Brain Health


Our general physical health influences our minds too. Chronic illness, pain, and undertoning exhaustion can all negatively affect how we feel and think, from foggy-headed tired feeling during the bout of flu to being distracted when you are in pain. That is why taking good care of your body is an excellent way to take care of your brain health.

Two people cycling

There is a definite link between physical activity and cognitive performance.


Did you know that even the simplest forms of exercise can help the brain resist physical shrinkage, enhances cognitive flexibility, and sharpen the mind?


People that exercise daily enjoy healthier brains and perform significantly better on cognitive tests than those who are mainly sedentary.
But what if you hardly ever have time to include physical activity into your regular daily routine? Does this mean you are at a grave disadvantage? Not axiomatically.
Walking for 30 minutes four times a week. Can stimulate your brain and enhance the connectivity of essential brain circuits, combat declines in brain function due to aging, and even increase cognitive skills.
walking is good for brain health
Vigorous physical exercise can help you reduce stress and anxiety, and regular physical activity can help boost your mood and dramatically improve wellbeing.

Whether you are keen on gardening or a massive kickboxing lover, walking, or rock climbing. Any exercise of your choosing can be a fantastic mind-booster.

Conclusion


So, what boosts your brain health? Well, it’s a combination of various foods and activities. By creating and sustaining a healthy lifestyle, you improve your chance of retaining and sharpening your cognitive abilities.

Read Next – How to Stop worrying about future after this pandemic?

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Emotional Fitness and Three Ways to Enhance it.

A happy couple having cup of tea

You can easily stay physically fit. All you need for physical fitness is just a healthy diet, enough sleep, and physical activity. You can keep your brain fit too. There is a whole lot of brain-training games available at play store that can help you boost your memory, creativity, and thinking skills. But can you be emotionally fit too? Yes, you can!

What is Emotional Fitness?


Emotional fitness is the state of our mind where we are capable to focus on constructive and creative tasks while we manage to stay avert from negative thoughts. With the scientific proofs today – emotional intelligence (EQ) is more important than IQ for our health and overall happiness, being emotionally fit seems to be a key to success in life.

Emotional fitness is your best shield against all of your life’s challenges. When you’re emotionally fit, there’s nothing that can deviate you off course because you have cultivated the inner-strength to block difficulties from infiltrating your mission and affecting your purpose.

You are supposed to be well-adapted. Successful in your relationships. To solve your conflicts constructively. To figure out your profession and your life altogether. Oh, and by the way, you don’t have the superpowers to manage all that. Obviously, we don’t come to this world equipped with the skills to go through life smoothly. We need to learn them. And we learn them continuously, no matter how old we are.

3 Best Tips to enhance Your Emotional Fitness


Similarly to need of being physically active to stay physically fit, you need to work on your emotional health too. There certainly are some things that you can do to boost your emotional intelligence and stay emotionally fit

1. Tag Your Feelings


Pay attention to your feelings and acknowledge them. Once you concentrate on your feelings, you are actually conveying a signal to your brain to manage them. For instance, imagine that you were standing on the 30th-floor balcony. You are scared to death. If you label your emotion of fear, you will send a signal to your brain. As a response, your brain will decrease the stress hormones. Pretty cool, isn’t it?

What are you reacting to? Ask yourself that question each time of every day when your peace is interrupted.

Take responsibility for your emotions. Remember that it is OK to feel sad, angry, or afraid. Hold on to your feelings. Examine your thoughts behind those emotions and interrogate yourself questions about them. Then release your feelings in a natural way.

man holding an emotion emoji

Furthermore, listen to your body. This is very important. Why? Because our feelings are part of our body. Ask yourself what is your body actually feeling when you are mad, sad, or scared. Or how does your body react when you feel happy, excited, or in love? Remember, your brain and your body work together. So, always pay attention to signals that your body sends you.

2. Create a Strategy for Coping with Your Emotions


If you have a specific emotional issue, create a daily plan or routine of working on your feelings. Learn how to regulate your emotions. Try relaxation techniques, some other self-help coping skills or search for support. You can rely on your family-&-friends support network. Share your feelings with them. Or reach out to a professional mental health counselor to help you build your coping skills.

An emotional business man

3. Try Out Mental Health Games


Enhance your EQ with the little help of mental health apps. They are similar to popular brain-training games that help you keep your mind fit. Fun but also scientifically grounded, mental health games can help you enhance your EQ in a fun and creative way. Apart from having fun, you will learn life hacks that you can successfully apply to your everyday life and relationships.

iQ and EQ

The best part is that you learn the vital psychological and emotional skills through an engaging and fun game! You will learn how to boost your confidence, improve your communication skills, and make your relationships thrive while having lots of fun.

Once you master these skills, you will need to use them to be able to level up in the game. Guess what? At the same time, you’ll be leveling up in your life, too. You will be able to use the emotional skills that you gained to improve your performance at school or at work. They will also help you enhance your relationships with other people.

The great thing is that these games are empirically based on current psychological research and many great psychological concepts that you can use in the upgrading of your emotional fitness.

Take charge of your consistent emotions and start to deliberately and consciously reshape your daily experience of life

Stay Emotionally Fit


Once you mastered your emotional fitness skills, you need to keep them up. Emotional well-being is something that requires maintenance. Stay in touch with your emotions. This way you will be able to feel the fullness of life. Also, being conscious of your feelings will help you not to feel exaggerated by experiencing certain emotions.

Emotional fitness is a bit of both, learning how to control your emotions and know how to fully experience them. Mental health games are the best way to learn how to keep your negative emotions like sadness, anxiety, or fear away.

They are also an awesome tool that you can use to boost positive emotions like pride, love, confidence, and self-esteem. Because staying emotionally fit will help you keep up manage relationships and reach your life goals effectively.

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8 Physical Body Symptoms for Hormonal Imbalance

Sadly, by the time some people realize it, things took a turn for worse, but they cannot deny that there were certain changes in their body, which at some point or the other would have caught their attention. Hormonal imbalance in women and men is common these days.

Hormonal imbalances arise when there is too much or too little of a hormone in the bloodstream. Because of their vital role in the body, even small hormonal imbalances may cause side effects throughout the body.

Way of the body telling us

Our body has its own way of telling us that things are not going the natural way and requires an external force to deal with it.

Approx everyone faces at least one or two periods of hormonal imbalance during their lifetime. It is more common during puberty, pregnancy, and menstruation. But some people face persistent, irregular hormonal imbalances.

Hormonal Imbalance symptoms

Our body at first tries to deal with things on its own when it fails to control, it sends out internally to warn us, like irregular period, abdominal cramps, mood swings, etc. (in this case), when it’s not treated on time, our body gives up, and eventually, the symptoms start occurring externally.

All the things which generally happen to people when their body goes through hormonal imbalance. Here’s the list of eight physical body changes and signs, which lets you know that your body is going through hormonal imbalance.

1. Thinning of hair

It all starts from head to toe, the brain first tries to send the signals from the point that is closest to it, i.e. our hair. Unlike the common loss of hair strands, you’ll find your hairline thinning and losing out hair in chunks. Some of the other parts of your scalp will lose its hold on the hair and would start showing up. That’s your first sign.

Thinning of hair
Thinning of hair

2. Persistent anxiety

Next is your state of mind. You may not always be under depression, but there would be something that keeps bothering you enough to make you gloomy. This anxiety and feeling of depression are caused when your body isn’t going through its natural way of dealing with hormones.

stress and anxiety
stress and anxiety

3. Dark circles

I know most people would find this call it to sign exhaustion, stress, and lack of sleep. But people often try to reverse it by changing their lifestyle. Sometimes, these dark circles are stubborn and regardless of how much effort you make, it simply doesn’t go away. Dark circles are the result of sleep issues, which is an indication of either lack of testosterone or progesterone.

dark circle on lady face
dark circle on lady face

4. Acne

Next is your face. We all are aware of how food allergies, climatic conditions can wreak havoc on our facial skin if precaution isn’t taken. But, in the case of hormonal imbalance, its appearance is consistent.

acne of lady face
acne of lady face

5. Changes in chest

When there’s an imbalance, your chest area tends to change in terms of skin tissues. You will start feeling a slight pain, maybe find some lumps. It is advised to go and see the doctor for cancer warning. If that is ruled out and you still feel changes in your breast shape, chest size, lumps, etc., it’s because of irregularities in estrogen levels in your body.

Changes in Breast
Changes in Breast

6. Sweat

We all sweat. But, some people have excessive sweating, which shouldn’t be ignored. It’s a natural tendency to sweat under the extremely hot weather, lifting weights or exhausting your body with high-end running jobs, but if you start sweating due to nervousness or simply fear of something and if the sweating comes along with the deep foul smell, it’s an indication of the hormonal issue.

Person is sweating
Person is sweating

7. Irregular weight gain

You are healthy, but a lot of fat keeps hitting some areas of the body, despite your best efforts to keep them off the bay. Usually, when lower abdomen and upper torso start gaining fat it’s a sign that you need to pay a visit to your doctor and get checked for hormonal irregularities. The dramatic fluctuation in your weight is the result of hormonal imbalance.

Obese lady
Obese lady

8. Fatigue

Do you often feel lousy even after a high on adrenaline activity or feel lethargic despite a good night’s sleep? It is a sign of imbalance in your progesterone levels.

girl feel fatigue
Girl feel fatigue

Conclusion

Many hormonal imbalances are occurred by external factors, such as stress or hormone medications. However, hormonal imbalances can also be occured by any medical condition that impacts or involves the endocrine system or glands. A person should consult a doctor about long-term unfamiliar symptoms, especially those that cause pain, discomfort, or interfere with everyday activities.

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9 Postpartum diet tips for post-pregnancy weight loss.

Having a baby and becoming a mother are some of the most amazing experiences that life can afford. However, there are many changes that happen to the body during pregnancy; one of those is gaining weight. Starting a postpartum diet can be a great option for new mums who want post-pregnancy weight loss in a healthy way.

Gaining a healthy amount of weight is actually important for keeping you and your baby healthy during pregnancy. There are many factors that can influence your weight gain, including your pre-pregnancy weight, whether or not you’re carrying twins, muscle mass, physical activity levels, morning sickness and general eating habits. You can learn more about healthy eating during pregnancy.

The average “healthy” weight gain is about 11.5–16 kg (or 25–35 lbs.) during pregnancy. While it may sound like a lot, this weight consists of your baby, the placenta, amniotic fluid, blood, breast tissue, the enlargement of your uterus and extra fat stores. After that, depending on the size of newborn baby and the weight of your amniotic fluid and placenta, pregnant women can lose up to 6 kg during delivery.

Finally, after your baby is born, it is important to take care of yourself and eat nutritious foods (for your sake and your baby’s). And if you want to lose some of that weight gained after having your baby, here are nine healthy tips to help with your postpartum diet for post-pregnancy weight loss.

9 Postpartum Diet Tips For Post-Pregnancy Weight Loss

1. Don’t fad diet

Losing weight after your baby is born needs to be done in a healthy and safe way. Doing fad diets can pose health risks to both you and your baby. Many fad diets promote the exclusion of important food groups. This can result in not meeting the nutritional requirements for you and your baby. Fad diets also promote rapid weight loss, which can adversely affect your breast milk supply. Some fad diets also use diet pills or other supplements that can be harmful to both you and your baby.

2. Eat a variety of plant based foods

Eating a balanced diet rich in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts, and seeds can help with healthy weight loss after birth. Plant foods are especially rich in fiber. In fact, one important type of fiber found in plant foods is called soluble fiber. This type of fiber dissolves in water and slows down digestion, helping to control your blood sugar levels and making you feel fuller. Soluble fiber may also help with regulating appetite hormones. Therefore, consuming plant-based foods rich in soluble fiber can aid a healthy postpartum diet.

vegetables
vegetables

Plant foods also contain a kind of fiber called insoluble fiber. This fiber adds bulk to your stools and helps to keep your bowels regular. Postpartum constipation is the a problem for many women, so including plant based foods in your postpartum diet can really help.

If you want to start eating more plant foods, check out my 8 really easy recipes to start following a plant-based diet. You can also download a free copy of The Beginner’s Guide to Losing Weight with a Plant-Based Diet.

3. Breastfeed if you can

Besides providing essential nutrients for your baby’s growth, immune protection and gastrointestinal benefits, breastfeeding can also help with your postpartum diet weight loss. Breastfeeding triggers your uterus to shrink back to pre-pregnancy size through the release of the hormone oxytocin. Studies have also found breastfeeding helps with postpartum weight loss, as milk production burns about 300 to 500 calories a day. So if you are able to breastfeed your baby, this can help you achieve your healthy postpartum diet goals.

4. Include protein in your diet

Protein can help support weight loss and your postpartum diet by reducing your appetite, increasing feelings of fullness and boosting your metabolism. Consuming enough protein along with appropriate training can help with gaining muscle back post-pregnancy.

You can eat protein from plant sources or animal or a combination of both. Choosing plant protein sources for your postpartum diet can help with weight loss, as plant protein foods also contain fiber, which helps you feel full. Some good sources of plant protein include tempeh, tofu, lentils, beans, hemp seeds, edamame, and soy milk.

It is good to include these sources of plant protein throughout your day to help with your postpartum diet. This means consuming some at breakfast, lunch, dinner and between meals with your snacks. Here’s how you can spread these plant protein foods throughout your day.

5. Have healthy snacks ready

Life with a newborn can be extremely busy. From feeding, changing nappies, burping, and dressing, there isn’t much time left for cooking in the kitchen. Keep some healthy snacks on hand that you can eat while breastfeeding and on the go, like those that require little or no preparation can still help with your healthy postpartum diet. Some quick, easy, nutritious snacks include fruit, vegetable sticks, and dip, nuts, a glass of soy milk, chickpeas, yogurt, boiled eggs, and wholegrain crackers. Remember to keep these visible and easily accessible at home, not tucked away at the back of the fridge or pantry. Check out this article for more easy and healthy snack ideas.

6. Drink more water

Drinking enough water and staying hydrated can help with your postpartum diet. If you are dehydrated, your body can register a hunger sensation instead of thirst, so staying hydrated can help with your weight loss efforts. Remember, when you are breastfeeding, you need extra water, so aim for at least 8-10 cups of water per day. Even try keeping a few bottles of water around the house or at the locations where you breastfeed.

7. Skip the highly processed foods

Foods high in added sugars, refined carbohydrates, and saturated fats are high in calories and have little nutritional benefit. Limiting or avoiding these foods will help with your postpartum diet. Nourishing your body with enough real healthy foods and not excluding any nutritious foods or food groups, like fruit or carbohydrates, will help you limit your intake of processed foods. If you do struggle with sugar cravings, here are five practical ways to stop them.

8. Ask for help

They say that it “takes a village to raise a child”, and this couldn’t be anything further from the truth. Looking after your baby and yourself can be very stressful and busy, so it’s important to ask for help and accept help when it’s offered. Asking for help with food shopping and cooking meals can help you significantly with your postpartum diet. You can also ask for help with babysitting so you can prepare and cook your own healthy meals and start exercising again.

9. Get your body moving

Exercise after pregnancy will help with your postpartum diet weight loss as well as boost your mood and energy levels. It’s important to always seek medical advice from your obstetrician, midwife, physiotherapist or doctor before returning to exercise after birth.

Walking is a great way to re-commence exercise, as it can be done with baby in the stroller or carrier and with family or friends. Also, weighted exercise is excellent for boosting your metabolism, which helps with both weight loss and toning. Just to make things easy, here are twelve simple exercises to help get you back in shape.

Finally, if you are struggling to find time to fit in exercise with your busy mom’s life, remember that breaking your exercise up into smaller time blocks can be just as effective. You could try doing two twenty-minute blocks or even four ten-minute blocks; it all adds up!

Takeaways:

For a new mom, how challenging life can be with a newborn? I hope these healthy tips can help you with your post-pregnancy weight loss. Remember, choose the ones that will work best for you and your lifestyle. Your body has been incredible for growing a beautiful baby, so be kind to it.

Read also {Intermittent fasting benefits, and 8 tips for weight loss.}

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8 of The Most Fitness Myths and Facts.

The world of fitness has many dos and don’ts. With so much contradictory information out there. It can be overwhelming to choose which guidelines to abide by for optimal results. While some might be scientifically proven facts backed up by years of research, others are just plain old fitness myths. It is very important to dive into the science and veracity behind various claims.

Lady holding a bar
Lady holding a bar

As a fitness trainer, I’ve personally encountered a number of clients who hold back because of some information that they might have read on the internet or heard from a friend. That is why I decided to compile a list of eight of the most common fitness myths and misconceptions. Hopefully, busting these myths will better guide you through your fitness journey.

Here are 8 of the most fitness myths explained.

1. I just Want to “Tone” My Muscles

If I had a dollar for every time I heard this during my professional career, well, I would be rich.

This statement which you might have heard (or even used at some point) is physiologically incorrect. If we were to take a look at the anatomy of the human body at a musculoskeletal level, we would see that our muscles are already striated, meaning they are toned and defined in nature. This is actually already the case for everyone!

What happens is that fat accumulates and surrounds the muscle, and we can end up losing that toned look. Not to worry – once you start losing body fat, your muscle definition will reappear again!

lady on bench holding dumbbells
lady on bench holding dumbbells

2. If You Want to Lose Weight avoid Weightlifting

Another one of the most common fitness myths is that people looking to lose weight should avoid stepping foot in the weight area. This is completely absurd for a number of reasons. First off, when you weight train, you’re going to gain muscle mass, which in turn will increase your metabolism at rest, since muscles need the energy to survive. This means you’ll be burning more calories than before!

In addition to that, weight training triggers the release of stress hormones, which promote weight loss! Not to mention the positive effects weightlifting has on increasing bone density and preventing osteoporosis and other degenerative diseases.

Lady performing dumbbell over head press
Lady performing dumbbell over head press

3. If Women lift weights, They Will Get “Bulky”.

“Stay away from the dumbbells or you’ll get too big”. Yet another untruth, and here’s why.

Physiologically speaking, at a hormonal level, women have lower testosterone levels than men. Testosterone is a highly anabolic hormone responsible for gaining muscle size.

However, this does not mean that females are incapable of putting on muscle; they just won’t (on average) as quickly or as much as men do. That can change, of course, if they’re following a well-designed strength program and eating a caloric surplus.

Another important point to keep in mind is that the goal of weight training isn’t only about aesthetics. It’s the translation of the work put in the gym into daily life. Lifting weights will help make a lot of daily tasks easier and more efficient. This can include a lot of everyday tasks, such as carrying groceries, lifting something heavy off the ground without hurting your low back, etc.

A lady performing bench press
A lady performing bench press

4. Women Need Different Exercises Than Men

Now, this is just plain ridiculous. No, women do not need to train differently. And no, there are no magical exercises that’ll transform your body quicker.

Our musculoskeletal systems function the same way. Our bodies react to stimuli and mechanical work. What you do need to pay attention to is the “one size fits all” approach, meaning someone else’s workout routine may not benefit you as much as it benefits them. Find out what works best for YOU.

Dumbbells,tape and rope
Dumbbells,tape and rope

5. Long-Duration Cardio Sessions and Low-Intensity exercises are the Way to Go

Let’s break this one down once and for all. Our body uses lipids (fat) as the predominant fuel for low-intensity, long-duration exercises, while high-intensity exercises use glycogen (carbs) as fuel.

However, there’s a constant continuum between the two. As intensity increases, the body has a tendency to shift towards carbs for more energy during harder bouts.

Recent studies show that HIT (high-intensity training), intermittent training, or HIIT (high-intensity interval training) have had more promising results when it comes to weight loss.

If we were to approach the matter simply by calculating the number of calories entering your body vs. the number of calories burned, shorter intervals of near submaximal effort (HIT) burn more calories than walking or pacing on a treadmill.

This does not mean that low-intensity cardio is bad. It is, in fact, good for overall longevity and can also be used as a recovery method from tiresome HIIT sessions.

woman doing cardio
woman doing cardio

6. More is Always Better

People have developed this idea that if they do more than what’s actually needed, they’ll get to the finish line faster. Wrong! It might just lead to a setback.

Approaching training and the human body with this sort of mentality can have serious detrimental effects, such as overtraining.

Many people out there aren’t on board with the idea of overtraining, but I can assure you this isn’t another myth.

It is during our rest period that our bodies recover and repair. If we fail to provide sufficient rest, then our performance will suffer, potentially leading to unwanted injuries.

Research has shown that our bodies react to a certain volume of work. This volume can be split. Instead of performing 10 sets of eight repetitions of squats on a single day and placing significant stress on your lower back and knees in a single session, you can split the workout over two days. For example, try four sets of 10 repetitions per day. This will lead to the same volume of work done at the end of the week.

Train smarter, not harder.

7. You Can’t Build Muscle on a Caloric Deficit

Perhaps you’ve heard that “you can’t lose fat and build muscle at the same time” or “you need to bulk up and be on a caloric surplus to build muscle”.

All of these statements are false, and here’s why.

Muscles are mainly made up of water and amino acids (protein). In order to gain muscle, we need adequate water and protein consumption (at least one gram per pound of bodyweight) as well as the stimulus to grow (training via progressive overload). Therefore, I recommend you stop eating everything in sight and claiming that you’re bulking because, in fact, you’re just gaining fat. Doing that would not only be hard, but it would additionally just be a waste of time to lose all the weight you put on.

Yes, not being able to build muscle on a caloric deficit is one of the common fitness myths. However, you need to keep in mind the degree of this deficit.

Let me explain: if your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) is about 2,000 calories and you’re on an 800-calorie diet, then the results will be different, since you won’t have the energy required to train and build muscle. However, if you were on a 1,700-1,800-calorie diet (still in a slight deficit), you will be able to train and stimulate muscle growth.

8. Running is Bad for Your Knees

Walking and running are the primary and basic movements of the human body. To generalize the idea and boldly say that running is bad for your knees is incorrect. This implies that endurance athletes, such as marathon runners who run 26+ miles, must suffer from knee pain, which is not the case.

As is the case for any other exercise, running requires proper preparation and technique among other things. Yes, running has a technique to it. Correct biomechanics and balance in the lower body musculature are required, not to mention the terrain used and the footwear worn. If you’re running on concrete with poor mechanics and improper footwear, then it’s no surprise if you complain about knee pain or “shin splints”.

woman running
woman running

Stride length and heel strike should be accounted for by keeping the foot within the body’s base of support while running. In addition, it’s essential to wear running shoes that compliment your own foot arch.

Takeaways


Hopefully, debunking these common fitness myths has helped shed some light on the matter and cleared up any confusing information that’s out there. It is very important to get educated about fitness so that you’ll be able to embark on your journey with the ability to avoid injuries and maximize your performance. Don’t believe everything you read or hear; instead, spend time learning the facts behind involving how your body works.

Also, make sure you ask for help whenever you need it. Fitness coaches and trainers are devoted to guiding and helping you so that you can achieve optimal results.

But of course, let us know if you have heard about any other fitness myths, and we’ll do our best to provide the right advice to help clarify any misleading information that might be holding you back. Also, feel free to add any additional thoughts or comments in the comments below!

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