Stop Letting Bad Excuses Destroy Your Health

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By Katherine Smith

healthywordsThere are all kinds of reasons we give for why we settle for an unhealthy lifestyle. Here’s the thing: They’re all bad. Granted, healthy living is not as easy for some as it is for others. But it is absolutely essential for all.

Consider some of the reasons we give for not sticking to a healthy diet:

• Healthy food is more expensive

• Healthy choices are harder to find

• Healthy eating requires a lot of cooking

These all seem like excellent reasons until we end up with some kind of life-threatening disease which requires a drastic dietary change. Suddenly, the budget opens up for healthy eating. We discover where to find those healthier choices. And cooking becomes much less of a chore than it once was.

The same kind of thing is at play when it comes to proper exercise. We are convinced that our bad excuses are actually good reasons. Here are three of the most popular excuses, why they’re bad, and how you can overcome them:

I Can’t Afford It

Who said you need money to get fit? You can strap on the pair of running shoes you already have in your closet and hit the road to physical fitness before you are done reading this paragraph.

Spending money to achieve higher levels of fitness is always optional. But if you select one of the many options, such as a Fitness 19 gym, you will find plenty of affordable plans that cater to entire families.

You can spend as much or as little as you want. You can choose to take classes from professional instructors, or enjoy a more free-form use of facilities.

We tend to spend money on the things we consider important. If your life depended on a gym membership, you would find the money. It is just a matter of convincing yourself that your health is a budgetary priority. If a loved one were in your condition, you would find a way to pay for their treatment. You only need to love yourself equally as much.

Pain Is Holding Me Back

Regardless of your level of health, good exercise causes a certain amount of discomfort. This is especially true for muscle building. But not all exercise is about muscle building. No pain, no gain may be motivational to a certain type of Neanderthal. But it is scientific nonsense. Exercise doesn’t have to hurt.

Lifehacker points out…..

“This myth has been debunked by doctors, physical therapists, and researchers of all stripes, but it still persists because most people conflate the idea of pushing themselves to work out harder with pain.”

The desire to, and enjoyment of hurting one’s self is called masochism. It is a mental illness, not a useful, athletic trait. If exercise moves from challenging to painful, see your doctor. And get better exercises to do.

Exercise need not be at the level of a professional athlete to be useful. Expecting pain from exercise is the product of bad high-school coaching. Take your favorite NSAID such as Advil, and do the level of exercise you can achieve that does not include pain.

I Don’t Have Time

This is always the trump card that is supposed to end the discussion. It is also the worst of the bunch. You may think that a good exercise regimen takes a lot of time. But the Mayo Clinic begs to differ.

They say it takes about 75 minutes a week of vigorous exercise. That is less than 11 minutes a day. Strength training will cost you two sessions a week with no specific time limit. Whatever you can spare is fine.

How do you find the time? Set your alarm to go off eleven minutes earlier. Take one less detour to Starbucks. Split it up with two minutes here, three there, and so on.

At the end of the day, finding eleven minutes, or eleven dollars, or eleven pain-free exercises is not the problem, and never has been. It is always ever about prioritizing your health. It is either important to you, or it isn’t. Don’t let past failures stand in the way. One saying we all learned as children applies doubly as adults: If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.

Simple Stop Snoring Devices When You Just Want To Sleep

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By Nathan Gomez

sleepSnoring is a huge problem when your trying to get a really good night’s sleep and there are many simple stop snoring devices on the market that can quickly stop the problem in its tracks before you drive your partner crazy. You don’t’ want to be the reason your sweetheart cannot sleep, especially if you are starting to be a chronic snorer. Be sure to have a few of these solutions around that house if you know you are prone to snoring when you get a cold, drink one too many beers, or are having sinus irritation due to allergy season. Sometimes people simply snore because they are extremely tired and this level of exhaustion tends to result in a restless and noisy night.

Nasal strips are available in a few different sizes and strengths to make sure you are as comfortable as possible. Use only the strength that is necessary for your particular type of snoring. Three different strengths for those who snore just a little to those that can take down a building or compete with a classic automobile engine.

Other stop snoring devices are designed around the concept of acupressure and can be worn on the hand. The pressure is intended to assist your body to be more aware of the airway and to keep you from snoring. Acupressure has been used for centuries with exceptional results that often surprise those who are not educated in Eastern medicinal ideas.

Another option is based on vibrations which wake you just slightly if you roll onto your back. This keeps you sleeping in positions that are less likely to result in snoring. The subtle vibrations are much more comfortable than your bedmate pushing, punching, kicking, or otherwise rudely waking you up when you wake them up.

Snoring is a much bigger problem than it immediately seems and when it is chronic it can cause extreme relationship stress. You want to keep yourself as healthy as possible and these stop snoring devices are the cheapest and most simple ways to stop the problem early in its tracks. If you have a severe health condition that is resulting in the snoring, you will want to go and have a conversation with a doctor to find ways to heal the underlying issues.

Snoring once in a while isn’t really a big deal, but snoring every night could be a sign of much more significant issues. Save your sleep, and the sleep of your loved ones by having a few of these items in your medicine cabinet so you are prepared when you need them. The financial output isn’t much and you will definitely be glad when you can get a good rest, stop waking yourself up, and stop waking everyone else up as well. You will feel happier and healthier if you sleep soundly. Snoring isn’t really major until and unless it is something that sticks around and doesn’t go away when the cold, allergies or other environmental trigger is gone.

How To Stop Being Manipulated

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By Mary Jo Rapini, MEd, LPC

thumbsupIf you’ve ever been in a relationship with a manipulator, chances are you’ll never forget it. You end up being put into situations you don’t like being in — and feel trapped to resist the situation or consequences. In a sense, we are all manipulated into buying something we don’t want, or being in a situation we don’t like, due to social influence. That’s normal and common. But a psychological manipulator is not normal, and it’s not healthy. Someone else is using you for his or her purpose, and in a very real sense, you are being exploited for his or her needs.

Whether you’re dating a manipulator, working for one, or living with one, you’ll feel the effects in several areas. Most manipulators share common characteristics.

* They find your weakness and use it against you.

* They know how to seduce you into giving up something meaningful to you in order to serve their needs.

* They are repeat offenders. Once they begin using you, they continue until you put a stop to it.

It is important to remember that manipulators are not psychologically healthy individuals. They have emotional issues and you can’t fix them. Breaking the cycle begins with you taking a stance and advocating for yourself. You’ll have to stand up to them and confront them to let them know you mean business.

Here are five tips that can help.

* First of all, if you encounter one of these people stay away from this if possible. Trust your gut. If you’ve seen them exploit or use others for their own good, the chances are high they’ll use you, too.

* Outsmart the manipulator. Manipulators are hard on your self-esteem and you may begin believing you’re not a good person. This is nonsense and a type of brain-washing. Don’t let them blame you for what goes wrong. Hold them accountable for their behaviors that led to the consequences they don’t like. No one has the right to blame you for unreasonable demands nor do they have a right to always get their own way or demand that you make them happy.

* Get comfortable with saying NO. Manipulators look for non-confrontational people. Don’t be that person for them. Confront them when they are being unreasonable. Going along to get along does not work with a manipulator.

* Set boundaries, and if they don’t respect them, follow through. Sometimes if the manipulator is at work that means following through with human resources, or if you’re married to the manipulator that may mean going to counseling since it is mandatory for the marriage to survive. Then follow through with what you say. Once manipulators know they can break your boundaries, they will continue to.

* Manipulators are bullies. Bullies don’t respect feelings. Keeping notes and a paper trail to press charges on a manipulator in your life may be necessary. Having a counselor to help keep you strong while you’re protecting yourself from further self-esteem damage is life changing.

Manipulators hurt friendships and relationships at school as well as in work place milieu. They can be charming and disarming, but your gut instinct is not easily fooled. If you have a bad feeling about someone, stay away from him or her. If you find yourself having to work or live with one, set firm boundaries and let them know you see them for who they are.

– Mary Jo Rapini, MEd, LPC, is a licensed psychotherapist and co-author with Janine J. Sherman, of Start Talking: A Girl’s Guide for You and Your Mom About Health, Sex or Whatever. Read more about the book at StartTalkingBook.com and more about Rapini at maryjorapini.com.

Stop Restless Legs Syndrome From Stealing Sleep

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This article is courtesy of PRWeb, please share your thoughts below…..

SleepingWomanRestless legs syndrome (RLS) involves uncomfortable sensations in the legs at night and an irresistible urge to move them, which can disturb sleep.

People with restless legs syndrome (RLS) describe it as a tingling, aching, pulling, itching, cramping, or “creepy-crawly” feeling in the legs. No matter how it feels, restless legs syndrome can dramatically interfere with sleep, reports the May 2015 Harvard Men’s Health Watch.

“People come in describing insomnia, but they don’t put two and two together,” says Dr. John Winkelman, an RLS specialist at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital. “You have to make that connection and then address the restless legs, and that helps people sleep better.”

The sensations caused by RLS feel like they come from deep in the legs. They trigger an irresistible urge to move the legs. The symptoms typically start or get worse at night, and often disrupt sleep.

For men with infrequent or moderately bothersome symptoms, self-help efforts can reduce the symptoms of RLS and improve sleep. Dr. Winkelman suggests these strategies to his patients:

* Don’t drink caffeinated or alcoholic beverages, especially within several hours of bedtime.

* Don’t smoke or use other nicotine-based products.

* Before going to bed, massage the leg muscles, do gentle stretches, take a warm bath, or apply heating pads.

* Exercise every day, but not too close to bedtime.

* Schedule activities that require prolonged sitting or reclining in the morning rather than the afternoon.

If these don’t help, five FDA-approved medications are available for people with severe and frequent symptoms of RLS.

Read the full-length article: “When sleeplessness starts in the legs”

Also in the May 2015 Harvard Men’s Health Watch:

* Easing osteoarthritis without adding pills

* Soy and men’s health

* Smartphone apps for men’s health

* Probiotics for the colon

The Harvard Men’s Health Watch is available from Harvard Health Publications, the publishing division of Harvard Medical School, for $20 per year. Subscribe at http://www.health.harvard.edu/mens or by calling 877-649-9457 (toll-free).

Stop Typecasting Overweight Kids

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healthywordsFrom Your Health Journal…..”I love so many articles from the Huffington Post, and enjoyed one today I found written by Dr. Randi Hutter Epstein called Stop Typecasting Overweight Kids. First, let’s review how childhood obesity (and obesity in general) is growing throughout the world. So many children are not eating properly and not getting enough physical activity. Add to the mix all the technology and sedentary lifestyle, we have a generation of children who may not be healthy adults. But, we need to stop typecasting these children, as thinking of them as fat and lazy, but recognize they are people with feelings, who can make a positive contribution the their families and society as a whole. Great things are going on in many places to help obese / overweight children, especially at Duke University where they have started the Duke Healthy Lifestyle Program. According to Dr. Sarah Armstrong, a pediatrician and director of the Duke Healthy Lifestyle Program, the children in her program sing, dance and do all sorts of things that are not the typical portrayals of these children. Please visit the Huffington Post site (link provided below) not only support Dr. Epstein’s article, but the great work Dr. Armstrong is doing at Duke University. Every little bit helps children lead productive and healthy lives, both physically and mentally.”

To read the article…..

Let’s be honest, this is what you picture when you hear about childhood obesity: a chubby, lazy kid gorging on junk food in front of a computer. As opposed to say, the other kind of kids who are not only thin and outdoorsy but also popular and multi-talented.

Maybe that’s stretching it a bit — none of us are quite that judgmental — but the way experts see it, all too many overweight children feel typecast, which is not only emotionally scarring but a huge barrier to letting them reach their fitness goals. This is one of the key points in a welcome new program launched at Duke and aimed at children and their families.

“If you watch the kids on Biggest Loser, what you see portrayed is always unflattering shots and these kids doing unhealthy things. But in reality many overweight kids do great things. They sing. They dance. They do all sorts of things that are not the typical portrayals of these children,” said Dr. Sarah Armstrong, a pediatrician and director of the Duke Healthy Lifestyle Program.

Her program includes talking to the children — mostly adolescents — and their families about healthy eating, and providing them with a fitness routine at a local gym. A program for the entire family to do together.

And while the program is too new to know whether it will work — meaning whether it will truly inspire long-term behavior changes — recent findings suggest they are doing the right thing. When a group of toddlers from poor families in New York City were enrolled in a nutrition program, obesity rates shrank from about 18 percent to 15 percent within the first six years, according to a recent report by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

To read the full article…..Click here

Stop Mocking The Gym Majors

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From Your Health Journal…..”A great story today on Yahoo about those who major in physical eduction or kinesiology. Many years ago, these majors were the butt of jokes on campus and on the workforce, but now, it appears it is a popular choice for many – as some have lucrative positions in the fitness industry, and can always fall back on possibly becoming a PE teacher. Of course, becoming a PE teacher has always been an honorable option. But for kinesiology majors these days, a potentially better-paying and higher-visibility choice is fitness training, a profession so popular that lawyers, dentists and English teachers are ditching those careers to become drill instructors at the gym. I strongly recommend your visiting the Yahoo link provided at the bottom of this page to view the full article.”

From the article…..

Once the Butt of Jokes, College Athletes Who Study Kinesiology Are Landing Plum Jobs

While playing quarterback for William & Mary College, Todd Durkin obtained a degree in health and physical education. In other words, he studied gym.

Don’t laugh. That much-maligned gym degree is one of the hottest sheepskins on campus today, and Durkin helps to illustrate why. After the fizzling of his lifelong dream to play pro football, Durkin used his phys-ed degree to fashion a career in fitness training—a practice that now includes a Pro Bowl-worthy list of NFL clients: Drew Brees, LaDainian Tomlinson and Aaron Rodgers, among others.

“Todd is a great motivator and having played ball he understands exactly what it is you’re training to do,” said the veteran NFL tight end Justin Peelle.

The college sports athlete who studies exercise has long been the butt of jokes and the target for critics who lament the fact that most athletic scholarships are wasted by people who are more interested in making the pros than getting a respectable education.

But increasingly that view underestimates the commercial and academic value of exercise studies. As the population skews older—and in many cases fatter—there’s a growing demand for fitness trainers, physical therapists, pre-med students and scholars who study the science of obesity, movement and performance. As a result, few majors on college campuses are growing faster than kinesiology, as the science of exercise is known.

In this new world, the jocks are no longer at odds with nerds. They are the nerds. In Auburn University’s fast-growing kinesiology department, 18 faculty members are former athletes, according to department head Mary Rudisill, a former swimmer.

Former college track star Matthew Miller, who calls himself the second-fastest faculty member in Auburn’s kinesiology department, runs a performance and “psychophysiology” lab that seeks to “uncover neurobiological mechanisms underlying psychomotor performance phenomena frequently reported in the sport and exercise psychology literature,” according to the lab’s website.

At the University of Michigan School of Kinesiology, freshman applications rose 30% last year, and for the last five years student athletes have represented about 20% of the school’s population—a percentage more than five times greater than the ratio of student athletes to the student body at large.

To read the full article…..Click here