Who knew? Read today`s interesting and informative guest post by Rachelle Wilber for habits you might not realize are harmful to your overall health!

Binge drinking, eating too much, and avoiding exercise…There are some habits that are just obviously bad for our health and well-being. However, even some of our seemingly legitimate habits may actually be harming our health.

Check out these five everyday habits that are actually detrimental to your well-being:

Take Caution 5 Everyday Habits Detrimental to Your Well Being

Discussing Your Problems
While talking through your problems can be a great way to work through your issues and get a little perspective, there comes a point where it is no longer beneficial. Research suggests that after a certain amount of discussion, reworking your problems only causes added stress and anxiety. The problem is that constantly discussing and “working on” your problems causes you to focus on the issues too heavily. This hyper-focus can lead to anxiety, stress disorders, and even depression.

Early Morning Workouts
That’s right. Your early morning workout regimen could be causing more trouble than harm. According to research, a heavy early morning workout regimen may actually compromise your immune system and increase your risk for certain types of bacterial and viral infections. Lighter workouts, like walking or a gently jog, are generally considered safe in the morning, but the heavy training should be saved for later in the day.

Eating Low Fat Foods
It seems like changing your diet to incorporate low fat foods could do nothing but good for you. However, when you cut out fat, you’re cutting out “good” fats as well. According to Jane Hackett, who has an online Master in Nursing degree, to stay healthy and function optimally, your body needs certain healthy fats, like omega-3s. These fats are essential for good brain function as well as heart health, so when you focus on eating low fat, you’re doing more harm than good.

Avoiding Sun Exposure
In recent years, advice regarding the sun has focused on avoiding it, applying sunscreen and covering up the skin as much as possible. However, recent studies have advised that we may actually need more limited sun exposure. The problem with covering up too much is that the sun is our primary source of vitamin D, which helps prevent rickets, osteomalacia, and depression. Some research suggests we may even need as much as up to 10 minutes in the midday sun without sunscreen every day. Just be sure to take the appropriate measures beyond that.

Cancelling Plans
While it’s important to get a little time to yourself every once in a while, it shouldn’t come at the cost of cancelling your social time. Regular time spent with others is important to maintain effective brain health, reduce stress, and prevent depression. Make sure you find a balance between spending time with others and getting a bit of personal rest and relaxation.

As you work on your effective health habits, make sure you aren’t participating in too many of these everyday habits that are actually detrimental to your wellbeing. Consider all aspects of your health and strike a balance to live long, well, and healthy.

About the Author

Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer from San Diego.

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Easy Ways to Get Exercise

by Head Health Nutter on May 23, 2015

As the perfect follow up to our last post, here are more ideas to fit exercise into any schedule from guest blogger, Lauren Kent! 

Exercise is essential to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. It helps improve your heart health, keeps your joints flexible, builds strong bones, and supports brain and blood sugar health. Plus, exercise burns calories to help keep your weight healthy.

gardening-hobbyBut how much exercise do you need to enjoy its health benefits? According to the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, adults should aim for at least 2 hours and 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity each week, along with 2 or more days of weight training and muscle-strengthening activities. These types of exercises work the major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms.)

It’s important to note that the 150 minutes of aerobic exercises does not have to be in large 30-60 minute chunks. You can reap the benefits of exercise by breaking that down into smaller, 10 minute increments. And, finding activities that you love will make those exercise minutes fly by.

Here are a few fun and easy ways to incorporate exercise into your daily routine:

Take a spin around the rink.

When I was a kid, I loved to roller skate. The music. The lights. It was the perfect way to spend an afternoon. I didn’t know it at the time, but all that skating was also great exercise. The average 150 pound person can burn 300-500 calories an hour roller skating. In the winter, you can burn over 470 calories in one hour of ice skating.

Engage in some healthy competition.
For Christmas my husband gave me a fitbit® to track my steps each day. One feature of the device allows me to track my steps against my friends. Nothing is more motivating than trying to get in more steps than my brothers and sisters. Whenever I’m out and about the band around my wrist is a reminder that my steps are being counted. So, I’ll park a little further away from the entrance to buildings. I’ll take the dog for an extra walk. I’ll take the steps instead of the escalator. Anything to get more steps in… and beat my siblings.

Keep hand-held weights or resistance bands around the house.
Stuck on hold? Trapped on a never ending conference call? Turn those wasted minutes into muscle strengthening minutes with weights and bands. Curls, triceps extensions, and reverse fly exercises are great ways to pass the time.

Gardening.
This type of activity is great exercise because you’re constantly getting up and down, reaching and pulling. All that movement in the garden will engage and strengthen your muscles, and give you a good workout. In fact, an hour of gardening will burn 200-400 calories.

Finding the time to exercise is a challenge, but when you break it up into more manageable chunks, and do activities that you actually enjoy, getting in those workout minutes can become a breeze.

About the Author

This article is written by Lauren Kent the writer for Nutri-Health.com, an online High Quality Health Supplements and Health Store. Assisting people and helping them find quality natural supplements and health products online is what Lauren has been doing for several years. Nutri-Health.com carries Digestive Supplements to Probiotic Supplements to Joint Health products.

Another idea is to renovate! I`m renovating my mom`s house and I`ve discovered this to be a very active endeavour. From demolition and painting to installing floors and cleaning the construction mess, it`s all ways of being more active AND productive.   

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We are ALL busy people: no matter who you are, we all share at least one thing: we only have 24 hours in a day. Most of us also spend the majority of our day sitting in front of an electronic device or in a car, which makes it even more important for us to carve out time for fitness. Check out today`s guest post by Brooke Chaplan for a ton of quick and easy exercises!

With the trends in healthcare, many experts have developed plans for a plethora of fitness levels. These plans usually require a nominal amount of time on a regular basis, but there are some exercises that can be done anywhere and at any time. This translates into increased energy and cognitive ability, as well as contributing to restful sleep.

Body You Want Fast Fitness Tips You Can Fit into Any Schedule

Quick and Easy Exercises

Here are several exercises that have the potential to boost well-being. No equipment or gym membership is needed, just your body in motion. The number of repetitions is up to you. However, start with 5 to 10 and work your way up to the point where you can feel a change in heart rate. Then, keep it up. They can be used starting today.

  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator every time.
  • Park at the farthest point to the building you are visiting and walk.
  • Pace during your favorite show.
  • Sit on the edge of the bed or a chair, and raise your upper body with your hands.
  • While sitting, perform leg lifts.
  • Squeeze your gluts and abs when standing, and while sitting squeeze the abs.
  • Stand 12” to 24” from any wall; place your hands flat on the surface and lean in keeping your back straight.
  • Do squats or even a modified version with hands on hips and the feet 12” to 24” inches apart.
  • Pump your arms in the air. Use variations of this in different directions.
  • Put your hands on your hips, and do upper body twists.
  • Jump up and down with your hands to your side. For a bit of cardio, include your arms for jumping jacks.
  • Dance like nobody is watching.

These suggestions can be used solo, or in combination as a way to kick-start a new fitness routine. The recommendation is to dedicate 30 minutes, 3 times per week, but it does not have to be all at one time. These exercises can be done throughout your busy schedule with the flexibility that you dictate.

Exercising should be done whether you have set aside a block of time, or try to do it continuously. The benefits include improving heart health and posture, increasing flexibility, and according an Ivein treatment center in Provo Utah (http://www.ivein.com/), if you stand for a majority of the day, keeping your legs in motion can cut down on varicose veins. This way you can avoid getting vein surgery in Utah, or a cholesterol test in the long run.

This format keeps the body in a constant state of exercising without your busy schedule missing a beat. Once this habit has some form of regularity, begin to capture the time spent for each. Challenge yourself to commit to a full week. You should begin soon to feel like your younger self again!

About the Author

Brooke Chaplan is a freelance writer and blogger. She lives and works out of her home in Los Lunas, New Mexico. She loves the outdoors and spends most her time hiking, biking and gardening. For more information contact Brooke via Twitter @BrookeChaplan.

Oooo… one of my favourite quick and easy move is a chest stretch: combat the effects of poor posture from sitting too long as ,you squeeze the shoulder blades together (use/strengthen the unused muscles while stretching overused/tight muscles). What`s your favourite quick and easy exercise? 

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5 Signs of Menopause & How to Handle the Transition

by Head Health Nutter on May 17, 2015

Are you around forty or better? Have you noticed some changes in yourself lately? If you answered yes to one of these two questions, you might want to keep reading today’s guest post by Meghan Belnap.

Menopause, which is defined as the time a woman’s cycles stop permanently, usually happens around fifty. There is a time span before that, however, when the hormone levels fluctuate in a less orderly fashion than in earlier years. This time period, which can begin as early as your late thirties, is called perimenopause, and it can involve some of the very symptoms that concern you.

Signs of Menopause

Changes in Menstrual Cycle

Cycle changes can be different in different women. Some have heavier periods, even so heavy they cause anemia. Other women have lighter, more frequent periods. The length of cycle may vary every time. Irregular spotting between periods can lead to anxiety about reproductive cancers. While quite inconvenient and disconcerting, all these scenarios are normal during the perimenopausal years. Talk to your gynecologist, of course, if you’re worried about a health problem, but most of the time the problem is caused by your fluctuating hormone levels.

Hot Flashes and Night Sweats [click to continue…]

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Medical Care 101: How to Find the Right Family Doctor

by Head Health Nutter on May 15, 2015

Are you comfortable with your family doc? Maybe you’re in between doctors right now. If you are, you’ll definitely appreciate today’s guest article by Lizzie Weakley! 

There are many healthcare decisions that can make a big impact on a person’s family. One of these is who to choose as a primary care physician. Below is some advice you can use to find the right family doctor.

Medical Care 101 How to Find the Right Family Doctor

1. Your Insurance

According to Nueterra, a leader in the development of surgical hospitals, healthcare costs are expected to skyrocket through 2015. If you want to be able to afford healthcare, you must absolutely purchase a health insurance plan.

Your health insurance plan will also be what guides your search for a family doctor. In the United States, most insurance companies have a network of physicians who are covered under their plans. If you have an HMO, for example, you must absolutely choose a physician who is part of the network. Not doing so could lead to your health insurance company refusing to cover any of the costs. So always make sure a candidate for your family doctor is covered under your insurance before you consider him or her more seriously.

2. Choose the Right Kind of Practice [click to continue…]

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How to Keep Your Metabolism Healthy

by Head Health Nutter on May 13, 2015

I`m currently on a `fat furnace`diet and I`m actually loving it! I get to eat all the time! Check out how to build your metabolism in different ways, like your diet, and why in today`s post by guest blogger, Ariel Bellamy.

You know that little machine that turns all the calories we consume into energy? It’s called metabolism, and sometimes it requires some maintenance. You can’t expect it doing all the work while you’re lying on your back eating a hamburger.

If you want your calories converted to energy, instead to layers of fat, better roll up your sleeves and get to work. You’ll need to break some old habits and breed healthy new ones. By following some of the simple life saving hacks, you’ll provide your calorie-converting machine with a much needed boost.

How to Keep Your Metabolism Healthy

Don’t skip meals

If you think that skipping a meal or two a day may cause you to lose weight, you’ve never been more wrong. In fact, skipping a meal may lead to a drop in your blood sugar levels, causing less energy and lethargy. You’ll be deprived for all the much necessary strength, which will, in the end, result with slowing down your metabolism. So, take that tip from your grandmother, and eat a couple of times a day. That doesn’t mean you should overeat, but eat smaller portions that are consistent with your metabolic type.

Balance is the key [click to continue…]

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6 Body Areas People Feel Most Self-Conscious About

by Head Health Nutter on May 9, 2015

Everyone is self-conscious about something on their body. Well, today’s guest blogger, Brooke Chaplan, just happens to have some tips to help us improve the six most common body issues people have today. 

Take a look in the mirror and there are sure to be a few things you’re not completely happy about or want to change just a bit, and you are not alone. Many of us have body image issues. Take a look at six of the most common areas that make us feel most self-conscious and how to think of a better fix.girl holding mirror

It’s as Plain as the Nose on Your Face
You can’t escape your nose. If you think it’s too big, too wide, too long, or has an unsightly bump, you are going to have to stare at it every time you take a look in the mirror. Unlike other features, you can’t change your nose with clothing or a change in diet. If you want to change your nose, you’ll need to dress it up with a nose ring or learn to do a bit of technical make up contouring to make it appear smaller. All you need to do is make your eyes look bigger with eyeliner and use blush and foundation strategically on your cheeks to downplay the nose.

Smile for the Camera
Your smile is your calling card to the world, particularly your pearly whites. If your teeth are crooked, stained, or damaged, it can be painful to see them in your reflection and in photographs. Fortunately, you can do something about dental problems. A Guerra Dental clinic in Colorado Springs, Colorado can help you form a plan of action to give yourself the smile you’ve always wanted. It might take a bit of discipline and cost on your part, but if you start now, you can be on your way to a better smile in no time. According to Colorado Spring Dental, you can always go the home route by finding recipes for whiteners with baking soda and hydrogen peroxide which can save you money on costly whitening strips. [click to continue…]

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I love my alcohol. Some days, too much. Since I believe in self-empowerment and balanced living, the abstinence goal of groups like AA did not feel right to me. That’s why I’m happy to present today’s guest blogger, Laura Givens, with her article on the latest FDA  guidelines for alcohol consumption. 

One of the hottest news items in the world of alcohol rehabilitation is the recent proclamation by the FDA that abstinence (refraining from drinking altogether) is not always attainable in clinical settings, and that there can be significant benefits when drinking is reduced. What isn’t new, is the thought that ‘no heavy drinking days’ (in which people consume no more than four or less standard drinks a day) can confer significant benefits.

The new FDA guidelines are not so much the product of a new way of thinking, if not a written indication of the FDA’s current view on the topic. Studies have shown that lowering heavy drinking to ‘low-risk’ daily limits, is sufficient to avoid many of the physical and psychosocial consequences of alcoholism.

Heart from pouring red wine in goblet isolated on whiteThe debate on harm reduction

The issue of harm reduction has always attracted heated debate. Those who are opposed to the concept have stated that the FDA is giving in to big pharma lobbying, promoting prolonged use of medication so that people get ‘hooked’ on other substances. They have also noted that it isn’t possible to turn alcoholics into social drinkers, and that another country which used harm reduction for many years, is reintroducing abstinence into its legal system because it is the only road to recovery.

The role of medication in recovery

Currently, there are only three FDA-approved medications for alcohol use disorders. Brown University Professor of Medicine, Dr. Peter D. Friedmann, notes that effective remittive therapies for alcohol dependence such as naltrexone should not be viewed any differently from any other disease-modifying therapies. While abstinence is certainly ideal , it is not always attainable. By changing harmful use to less harmful use, individuals can become motivated to attempt abstinence. Drinking less can be particularly useful for those whose problem is not so severe.

A change of focus

In harm reduction, the focus is removed from the use of alcohol itself, and placed on the consequences of addictive behavior. Thus, it attempts to lower the incidence of risky behavior, such as getting in fights, engaging in unsafe sex and sharing needles. The hope is that as clients begin to feel better, they may decide to make long-lasting changes. [click to continue…]

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5 Non-Surgical Ways for Younger & Healthier Skin

by Head Health Nutter on May 5, 2015

If you’re a regular reader, you know that on Live Lighter we promote natural solutions. For naturally younger skin, you’ll have to eat super clean (mostly vegetables), exercise regularly, get enough quality sleep, lots of water, avoid smoking and excessive stress, sun and alcohol. If having younger looking skin will make you happy and you just can’t live an uber healthy lifestyle, then consider these non-surgical ways presented by guest blogger,  Bob Gorman.    

nonsurgicalLooking young well into old age is an eternal dream of many. As medicine and technology advance by leaps and bounds, this dream is increasingly becoming a reality. Surgeons and dermatologists alike have updated their arsenal for the war on wrinkles with sophisticated cutting edge weapons that seem to turn back the clock.

What’s more, there’s a variety of procedures that are non-surgical, so you need not go under the knife. Here is my pick of the top 5:

CO2 Laser

This therapy consists of directing short and highly concentrated pulsating beams of light at unsightly skin, and thus removing it one layer at a time. C02 laser therapy can be used effectively to treat a variety of dermatological issues including warts, scars, wrinkles, enlarged nasal oil glands, and many other conditions. Recovery takes up to two weeks, but the effects are long lasting. [click to continue…]

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An O.C.D. Nightmare: Too Much Stuff & Not Enough Storage

by Head Health Nutter on May 3, 2015

Come on, I know you’re not done spring cleaning yet! Are you having some difficulties? Even after all our spring cleaning tips? Well then you might enjoy today’s guest blogger, Jennifer Caughey, as she shares her experience and suggestions.

declutter-your-life The O.C.D. Nightmare

Once birthdays and holidays wrap up, you’ll likely be left with a ton of stuff around the house, such as old toys, games, books and items for the kitchen. Don’t try to shove it all in the closet, basement or the garage. It just adds to the already existing clutter of your home and can create enormous stress and an O.C.D. nightmare. Remember, less is always more, especially when it comes to your own sanity.

When you have a decluttered living space, you’ll have fewer distractions and there will be less to trip on and this alone will give you a great piece of mind. Trust me, some of us go through this every year, and based on my personal experiences, the clutter drives me insane!

Since you can’t have a yard sale in spring rain, there is always the option to store all the old, unused toys until summer too or give them to the needy.

Too Much Stuff & Not Enough Space [click to continue…]

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