What’s Really in Halloween Candy?

These days, there’s more to a candy bar than simply chocolate. With a laundry list of ingredients, it’s hard to know which ingredients aren’t the best to ingest, and why they’re even in our candy bars in the first place. So we’ve peeled back the wrapper to uncover which ingredients are harmless, and which should go straight from the trick-or-treat bag to the trash.

SAFE
1. Tertiary butyl hydroquinone: This impossible-to-pronounce preservative prevents candy from going rancid and enhances storage life. Better yet, both the FDA and European Food Safety Authority say TBHQ is safe for humans. (And thank goodness, since it’s in America’s favorite Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup.)

2. Polyglycerol polyricinoleate: PGPR is a chemical that blends the ingredients in candy bars to make chocolate super smooth. It’s safe for humans to consume and is found in Kit Kat Bars and Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Bars.

3. Soy lecithin: This additive is a substance extracted from soybeans that emulsifies the cocoa and cocoa butter in candy, keeping the ingredients from separating. Although soy can be a dangerfood when eaten in large quantities (messing with hormone balance and testosterone levels), studies show small amounts of soy lecithin in our candy (like Almond Joy’s and M&M’s!) are a-okay.

CAUTION
1. Artificial flavors: Adding some flava flave to food can make them taste more appetizing (Butterfingers, anyone?). The studies of artificial flavors (not to be confused with artificial coloring!) are few and far between, but the Center For Science in the Public Interest says artificial flavoring is probably safe.

2. Milk fat: We’re talkin’ more than just whole milk, here. Milk fat is the main component of cream, and is composed of triglycerides, a type of fat that may thicken the artery walls and increase cardiovascular risk. The bad news is milk fat is found in most chocolate candies, including Snickers and Milky Way bars.

3. Salt: Yep, it’s not just in the savory stuff. Salt is often added to candy bars to offset all the sugar and corn syrup. And we definitely don’t need any more of the salty stuff: Most Americans consume more sodium than recommended (2,300 mg) which can raise blood pressure and contribute to heart disease.

AVOID
1. Artificial coloring: Sorry M&M’s and candy corn, it looks like you’re doing more harm than good. Although artificial coloring may make candy more appealing, it has been linked to behavioral problems, asthma, and even cancer when consumed in large quantities. Another (not so fun) fact? After Halloween in 1950, food dye Orange #1 was banned from candy (for good!) after many kids got sick.

2. High fructose corn syrup: Sugar and spice may not be so nice. The consumption of HFCS, a sweetener derived from (you guessed it!) corn, may sometimes lead to kidney damage and liver disease in high doses. Hold off on those king-size Twix and Milky Ways (and most other candy bars, in fact)!

3. Hydrogenated palm kernel oil: If you thought milk fat was bad, check out this oil creeping in our candy. More than 80 percent of palm kernel oil’s fat is the saturated kind (which can up LDL cholesterol) but is often used in foods because it’s cheaper than alternatives.

Have a Healthier Halloween: Your Action Plan
Don’t fret! These sneaky ingredients don’t have to take all the fun (and flavor) from Halloween. Check out these tips for a healthier Halloween, no creepy ingredients included.

1. Choose better: Okay, there’s no denying a least a few pieces of candy on Halloween. So while we’re at it, let’s pick some better options, like dark chocolate Raisinets, mini Hershey Special Dark bars, or a Twizzler or two. Or try low-fat popcorn and pretzels for some crunch!

2. Make your own: Ditch the wrapper and make candy from scratch. Try some classics like Snickers,Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, or these vegan Kit Kats. That way, you’ll have control over everything that goes into the mix!

2. Sharing is caring: Stuck with a whole bag of Halloween treats? Make sure to spread the love! Bring the bag into the office or share with friends, while allowing yourself a bite-sized treat when that sweet tooth kicks in!

3. Get creative: The stomach can be satisfied on Halloween without going down the candy aisle. Sip on some spiced cider, munch on a caramel apple, or dip some sliced fruit in a creamy pumpkin dip.

4. Give it away: Donate the extra goods to people around the world. Organizations like Operation Shoe Box and Operation Gratitude are great places to start.

5. Celebrate outside: Halloween isn’t just about the sweets. Focus the fun on other traditions, like hayrides, apple picking, or walking through a haunted house (eek!). We promise you won’t miss those Almond Joy’s.

Read more:http://www.shape.com/healthy-eating/diet-tips/whats-really-halloween-candy/page/2

Easy Ways to Lose Weight: 50+ Ideas

You know the drill when it comes to losing weight — take in fewer calories, burn more calories. But you also know that most diets and quick weight-loss plans have about as much substance as a politician’s campaign pledges. Here are more than 50 easy ways for you to finally lose the weight.

If you’re trying to drop a few pounds, don’t start off by trying to overhaul all your eating and exercise habits. You’re better off finding several simple things you can do on a daily basis—along with following the cardinal rules of eating more vegetables and less fat and getting more physical activity. Together, they should send the scale numbers in the right direction: down.

 

 

 

 

 

1. Indulge in fat releasing foods. They should help keep you from feeling deprived and binging on higher-calorie foods. For instance:

  • Honey. Just 64 fat releasing calories in one tablespoon. Drizzle on fresh fruit.
  • Eggs. Just 70 calories in one hard-boiled egg, loaded with fat releasing protein. Sprinkle with chives for an even more elegant treat.
  • Part-skim ricotta cheese. Just 39 calories in one ounce of this food, packed with fat releasing calcium. Dollop over a bowl of fresh fruit for dessert.
  • Dark chocolate. About 168 calories in a one-ounce square, but it’s packed with fat releasing fiber.
  • Shrimp. Just 60 calories in 12 large.
  • MORE: 13 fat releasing foods »

2. Treat high-calorie foods as jewels in the crown. Make a spoonful of ice cream the jewel and a bowl of fruit the crown. Cut down on the chips by pairing each bite with lots of chunky, filling fresh salsa, suggests Jeff Novick, director of nutrition at the Pritikin Longevity Center & Spa in Florida. Balance a little cheese with a lot of salad.

3. After breakfast, make water your primary drink. At breakfast, go ahead and drink orange juice. But throughout the rest of the day, focus on water instead of juice or soda. The average American consumes an extra 245 calories a day from soft drinks. That’s nearly 90,000 calories a year — or 25 pounds! And research shows that despite the calories, sugary drinks don’t trigger a sense of fullness the way that food does.

4. Carry a palm-size notebook everywhere you go for one week. Write down every single morsel that enters your lips—even water. Studies have found that people who maintain food diaries wind up eating about 15 percent less food than those who don’t.

5. Buy a pedometer, clip it to your belt, and aim for an extra 1,000 steps a day. On average, sedentary people take only 2,000 to 3,000 steps a day. Adding 2,000 steps will help you maintain your current weight and stop gaining weight; adding more than that will help you lose weight.

6. Add 10 percent to the amount of daily calories you think you’re eating, then adjust your eating habits accordingly. If you think you’re consuming 1,700 calories a day and don’t understand why you’re not losing weight, add another 170 calories to your guesstimate. Chances are, the new number is more accurate.

7. Eat five or six small meals or snacks a day instead of three large meals. A 1999 South African study found that when men ate parts of their morning meal at intervals over five hours, they consumed almost 30 percent fewer calories at lunch than when they ate a single breakfast. Other studies show that even if you eat the same number of calories distributed this way, your body releases less insulin, which keeps blood sugar steady and helps control hunger.

8. Walk for 45 minutes a day. The reason we’re suggesting 45 minutes instead of the typical 30 is that a Duke University study found that while 30 minutes of daily walking is enough to prevent weight gain in most relatively sedentary people, exercise beyond 30 minutes results in weight and fat loss. Burning an additional 300 calories a day with three miles of brisk walking (45 minutes should do it) could help you lose 30 pounds in a year without even changing how much you’re eating.

9. Find an online weight-loss buddy. A University of Vermont study found that online weight-loss buddies help you keep the weight off. The researchers followed volunteers for 18 months. Those assigned to an Internet-based weight maintenance program sustained their weight loss better than those who met face-to-face in a support group.

10. Bring the color blue into your life more often. There’s a good reason you won’t see many fast-food restaurants decorated in blue: Believe it or not, the color blue functions as an appetite suppressant. So serve up dinner on blue plates, dress in blue while you eat, and cover your table with a blue tablecloth. Conversely, avoid red, yellow, and orange in your dining areas. Studies find they encourage eating.

11. Clean your closet of the “fat” clothes. Once you’ve reached your target weight, throw out or give away every piece of clothing that doesn’t fit. The idea of having to buy a whole new wardrobe if you gain the weight back will serve as a strong incentive to maintain your new figure.

12. Downsize your dinner plates. Studies find that the less food put in front of you, the less food you’ll eat. Conversely, the more food in front of you, the more you’ll eat — regardless of how hungry you are. So instead of using regular dinner plates that range these days from 10-14 inches (making them look forlornly empty if they’re not heaped with food), serve your main course on salad plates (about 7-9 inches wide). The same goes for liquids. Instead of 16-ounce glasses and oversized coffee mugs, return to the old days of 8-ounce glasses and 6-ounce coffee cups.

13. Serve your dinner restaurant style (food on the plates) rather than family style (food served in bowls and on platters on the table). When your plate is empty, you’re finished; there’s no reaching for seconds.

14. Hang a mirror opposite your seat at the table. One study found that eating in front of mirrors slashed the amount people ate by nearly one-third. Seems having to look yourself in the eye reflects back some of your own inner standards and goals, and reminds you of why you’re trying to lose weight in the first place.

15. Put out a vegetable platter. A body of research out of Pennsylvania State University finds that eating water-rich foods such as zucchini, tomatoes, and cucumbers during meals reduces your overall calorie consumption. Other water-rich foods include soups and salads. You won’t get the same benefits by just drinking your water, though. Because the body processes hunger and thirst through different mechanisms, it simply doesn’t register a sense of fullness with water (or soda, tea, coffee, or juice).

16. Use vegetables to bulk up meals. You can eat twice as much pasta salad loaded with veggies like broccoli, carrots, and tomatoes for the same calories as a pasta salad sporting just mayonnaise. Same goes for stir-fries. And add vegetables to make a fluffier, more satisfying omelet without having to up the number of eggs.

17. Eat one less cookie a day. Or consume one less can of regular soda, or one less glass of orange juice, or three fewer bites of a fast-food hamburger. Doing any of these saves you about 100 calories a day, according to weight-loss researcher James O. Hill, Ph.D., of the University of Colorado. And that alone is enough to prevent you from gaining the 1.8 to 2 pounds most people pack on each year.

18. Avoid white foods. There is some scientific legitimacy to today’s lower-carb diets: Large amounts of simple carbohydrates from white flour and added sugar can wreak havoc on your blood sugar and lead to weight gain. But you shouldn’t toss out the baby with the bathwater. While avoiding sugar, white rice, and white flour, you should eat plenty of whole grain breads and brown rice. One Harvard study of 74,000 women found that those who ate more than two daily servings of whole grains were 49 percent less likely to be overweight than those who ate the white stuff.

19. Switch to ordinary coffee. Fancy coffee drinks from trendy coffee joints often pack several hundred calories, thanks to whole milk, whipped cream, sugar, and sugary syrups. A cup of regular coffee with skim milk has just a small fraction of those calories. And when brewed with good beans, it tastes just as great.

20. Use nonfat powdered milk in coffee. You get the nutritional benefits of skim milk, which is high in calcium and low in calories. And, because the water has been removed, powdered milk doesn’t dilute the coffee the way skim milk does.

Read more :http://www.rd.com/health/diet-weight-loss/easy-ways-to-lose-weight-50-ideas/

Secret Island Herb That Fights Anxiety, Stress & Panic Attacks

1 Hour Break Kava Root

It rips through your body like a buzz saw, tensing every nerve, pushing your adrenal glands into overdrive and robbing precious years from your life. Chronic stress is no joke, and millions of Americans live in such a heightened state of anxiety that their bodies can no longer respond to chronic stress properly.

Anxiety is such a significant health issue that it is being called a global epidemic. Although being stressed is a normal and often healthy response to certain life situations, excessive levels of chronic stress can become disabling. This is sometimes referred to as ‘burnout,” and millions of Americans are burning out on a daily basis.

To treat the ever-increasing problems of chronic stress and anxiety, we have become a pill-popping nation. Sales of anti-stress medications continue to rise, and a comprehensive global report on anxiety disorders forecasts that it will reach almost $6 billion by 2017.

Sadly, the response rate to pharmacological treatment protocols is shaky at best. More than one-third of people taking anti-anxiety medication do not respond to the drugs, and many carry significant side effects that counter any positives they deliver.

So, what are we to do about all this pent up stress that is crippling our lives? The solution, many health experts believe, can be found in safe and effective natural therapies. When these are combined with a healthy lifestyle, including eating a balanced whole food diet, getting adequate rest and regular exercise, the results are amazing.

Manage Stress with Effective Natural Plant Extracts

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Kava – the Happy Root

One amazing natural therapy for stress is kava, a shrub member of the pepper family. Kava makes its home in the South Pacific islands where it is ingrained in social and religious customs and medicinal therapies and is often referred to as the “root of happiness.”

Kava has a calming effect on the body and produces changes in brain waves that are similar to those seen in drugs including Valium. An ever-expanding body of research supports kava’s calming effects and ability to relieve anxiety, restlessness, muscle tension and even pain. Cognitive function is not impaired with kava, nor is it addictive. Both the American Herbal Products Association and the World Health Organization have conducted tests on the safety and effectiveness of this herb.

Kava is an extremely important export crop for many Pacific islanders. It takes about 2- 5 years to grow, and is now well protected in many parts of the world. The most potent organic source of kava in the world grows in Vanuatu, where the so-called “happiest people on earth” are found. Although the substance looks and tastes like muddy water, Vanuatu is one of the only places where kava is prepared the old fashioned way, preserving all of its therapeutic benefits. While the appearance and taste take a little getting used to, the benefits of this incredible herb are certainly worth pursuing.

Four More Stress Reducing Herbs

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Passionflower: This beautiful flower is known for its calming properties and effective use as a sleep aid. Passionflower is the perfect complement to our hurried culture and can quickly take the edge off of a supercharged day. A number of studies confirm this flower’s sedative and anxiolytic effects.

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Lobelia: Lobelia has a long history of use as a muscle relaxant and has also been found to decrease adrenaline in the body. As lobelia reduces tension, it also slows and strengthens the heartbeat, calms and deepens breathing and is beneficial in halting anxiety attacks.

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St. Johns Wort: This herb is one of the most commonly used herbs in the United States. It is best known for its ability to remedy mild to moderate depression and anxiety. Studies show that people who take St.John’s wort on a daily basis experience reduced anxiety and an improved sense of overall well being

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Pulsatilla: Also known as European pasque flower and Easter flower, this ancient herb is used by herbalists to soothe nerves, relieve tension and pain and treat headaches and insomnia.

An excellent source of all of these natural herbs is 1Hour Break–the first all natural oral spray that targets stress and anxiety. By simply spraying a few mists under your tongue, you’ll be soothing your stress and anxiety in no time. And as a special only to Organic Authority Readers use coupon code ORGANIC20 for an exclusive 20% discount on your order. Take Your 1 Hour Break Now!

SUPPORT OUR CAUSE FOR SOCIAL CHANGE:

We intend to shift the hearts and minds of those who are currently being treated for anxiety, and more importantly, for those who would otherwise go untreated. Our mission is to open healthy conversation that having anxiety is completely normal, and that contrary to Western Medication, there are alternatives that are safe, natural and effective. We wish to be the catalyst for healthy growth, and through 1Hour Break™ we believe we will promote dialogue, education, and create change.

Written by Leslie Garner

read more:http://www.organicauthority.com/health/secret-island-herb-that-fights-anxiety-stress-a-panic-attacks.html

Top 10 Workout Songs for October 2013

With a 12-week run at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart, Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines” was the quintessential song of summer. And now, thanks to an amped-up remix, the tune’s getting a second wind and dueling with Thicke’s own follow-up single “Give It 2 U.” Rounding out this month’s top 10 are new songs from Eminem, Ellie Goulding, and Britney Spears, along with additional remixes from Rihanna and Bruno Mars.

Here’s the full list, according to votes placed at RunHundred.com, the web’s most popular workout music website.

Robin Thicke & Kendrick Lamar – Give It 2 U – 126 BPM
Katy Perry & Juicy J – Dark Horse – 133 BPM
Ellie Goulding – Burn – 88 BPM
Eminem – Berzerk – 95 BPM
Rihanna & David Guetta – Right Now (Justin Prime Radio Edit) – 131 BPM
Britney Spears – Work Bitch – 127 BPM
Mat Zo vs. Chuck D – Pyramid Scheme (Radio Edit) – 128 BPM
Bruno Mars – Treasure (Sharam Radio Remix) – 125 BPM
Benny Benassi & John Legend – Dance the Pain Away – 124 BPM
Robin Thicke, Pharrell & T.I. – Blurred Lines (Will Sparks Remix) – 128 BPM

To find more workout songs, check out the free database at Run Hundred. You can browse by genre, tempo, and era to find the best songs to rock your workout.

read more:http://www.shape.com/fitness/playlists/top-10-workout-songs-october-2013

5 things to eat to lose weight

Have a healthy breakfast
The cardinal rule to any weight loss programme is never to miss breakfast. And oatmeal, a complex carbohydrate is ideal. It is a satisfying breakfast cereal, and compared to any other grain it provides more protein per serving. The fact that it takes longer to digest and hence releases energy slowly makes it perfect because you feel full for longer. Oats also keep blood sugar and insulin levels stable, which helps prevent fat storage. Have it with skimmed milk or yogurt.

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Opt for skimmed milk
Milk and its products are rich in calcium and can help keep your bones strong. Skimmed milk, low fat cheese and yogurt helps to break down fat cells.

Bean it
Foods that are high in fibre and are good sources of protein, can help you feel full for a very long time. And that, will help you control unnecessary bingeing. Protein has a very high satiety index and that is why make proteins an essential part of your meals.

Go for the grain
Grains have complex carbohydrates which during digestion release glucose slowly. Jowar, bajra and ragi etc can help in maintaining your blood sugars levels. The fibre and vitamins in them play an important role too.

Snack on nuts through the day
Stay away from fried and salted nuts but you can munch on raw, unsalted ones — almonds, and walnuts. These have essential roughage, protein, fat, minerals and micronutrient.
A handful can keep hunger at bay and provide energy.

Read more:http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2013-08-05/diet/37766577_1_protein-healthy-breakfast-5-things

10 Money-Saving Weight Loss Tips

Save Up to Slim Down

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It’s a multitasker’s dream scenario. But can saving cash really help shrink your waistline? Yes, according to behavioral psychologist Matt Wallaert. “Eating and spending are very similar behavioral processes in that they both are about the competition between our desires and the consequences,” he says. “Psychologists often look at the lessons learned in one domain to apply them to others.”

So why not kill two birds with one stone? These expert financial tips work for fattening up your wallet and slimming down your waistline. Ka-ching, ka-ching!

 

 

“One of the key findings with both spending and eating is that when people “break” their diet or budget, they tend to go big, figuring that they’ll just start over tomorrow because it is broken for today,” Wallaert says. Case in point: One study found that dieters who ate a single Hershey’s Kiss in the morning overate for the rest of the day, saying they had already “failed” on their diet. Don’t throw away good money after bad, Wallaert warns. “If you overspend, or overeat, each additional dollar or calorie is just making things worse.”

Take action: Next time you experience a moment of weakness, don’t let it derail you completely. Instead of giving in to an all-out shopping (or eating) spree, find a way to change gears. Put down the cookie (or those Louboutin heels) and go for a walk outside to refocus on your goals and avoid falling into a downward splurge spiral.

 

You can’t buy what you don’t shop for, so why tempt your willpower by spending time at the mall? While you may not be able to avoid all restaurants or stores, you can make little adjustments to your daily routine to help cut back on excess calories and spending. One study found that just moving a bowl of candy from your desk to a shelf across the room can dramatically decrease your daily intake. “Controlling your environment is critical in controlling your behavior, and we often forget just how important small changes can be,” Wallaert says.

Take action: Pinpoint a few of your trigger locations (or foods) for excess spending or overeating and avoid them. It’s straightforward, but it works! Have a friend that loves meeting for dinner at the Cheesecake Factory? Invite her over to try a new healthy recipe. You’ll save calories and cash!

Create a Tightly Sealed Budget

While tracking your spending is a good idea, if you really want to get serious about saving both money and calories, create a budget. And when it comes to staying on task, cash is king.

“Take a stack of envelopes and mark them for items you need/want to purchase—groceries, gas, entertainment, and utilities. Put an established amount of cash in each envelope and once it’s gone, it’s gone. This will make you find a way to budget and make things work,” says Amanda Gift, managing principal and vice president at Signature, a multi-family wealth management firm.

Sticking with cash can also help you make healthier choices at the grocery store. One 2010 study from Cornell found that people who paid for their purchases with credit cards were more likely to impulsively buy unhealthy items like ice cream and chips.

The same goes for calories. Getting specific about your weight-loss goal can help you determine your weekly calorie limit. Plan ahead for extra “spending” if a special event is coming up by cutting back on alternate days.

Take action: Once you’ve determined your monthly budget, spend some time on a Sunday to plan out healthy meals for the upcoming week to stay within your financial and calorie budget. (And when it’s time to hit the grocery store, bring only cash!)

Set Up a Double Rewards System

One of the best ways to stay on track with your weight loss and savings goals? Regularly reward yourself for your efforts. “Choose a credit card that offers healthy ways to redeem points,” Heckathorn suggests. “Have you always dreamed of enjoying an “exercise vacation” at a health spa where you do yoga twice a day? Choose the credit card, manage it responsibly, and you could make it happen for free.”

Take action: Look for a credit card that offers you rewards you’ll actually want to use, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card. New cardholders can currently earn a sign-up bonus of 40,000 points after spending $3,000 during the first three months. That translates to $500 in free travel (a Bikini boot camp, perhaps?).

Begin with the End in Mind

“Whether it’s deciding how much weight you want to lose or how much money you need to save, it helps a great deal to know where you want to end up,” says Jonathan DeYoe, a financial planner and owner of DeYoe Wealth Management. Once you know exactly where you want to go, you can create a specific step-by-step action plan to get there. For example, if you want to lose 15 pounds before your wedding in 10 months, you’ll need to lose about 1.5 pounds per month. If you want to take a $3,000 vacation one year from now, you’ll need to save $250 a month. Knowing where you’re going also helps you track your progress, DeYoe says.

Take action: Take a look at your specific end goal and deadline, and then do the math. Calculate exactly how much money or weight you’ll need to save or shed on a monthly basis to help keep yourself accountable during the process.

Do an Annual Spending Review

If you’ve noticed your bank account is a little low (and your pants are a bit tighter), it may be time for an annual review of your spending habits. “Pay close attention to your annual spending report. These year-end reports are often ignored by credit card users, but they can actually tell you a lot about the type of lifestyle you live,” says Joshua Heckathorn, blogger and CEO of Creditnet.com, a site that offers unbiased reviews of credit cards and credit report products for consumers. “Review them closely to make sure you’re not spending a large percentage of your annual spend eating out, which could be one of the main reasons why you’re having trouble shedding those last few pounds.”

Take action: Schedule an annual personal inventory check. Pick a date you’ll remember (like your birthday) and spend a few minutes reviewing important info like your credit report or annual spending report from your credit card company. Look for patterns in your spending habits that directly relate to your waistline—drinks out with clients and late-night dinners with friends—and come up with realistic strategies to scale back for the upcoming year. Consider meeting clients or friends for a boutique fitness class or coffee instead of cocktails.

Don’t Go to Extremes

 

As anyone who has ever tried to stay on a liquid cleanse can attest, switching from excessive habits to extreme restraint overnight can be a recipe for disaster.

“The quickest way to lose steam when working on a budget or trying a diet is to try extreme forms of behavioral change,” Wallaert says. “While it occasionally works for highly motivated people, the vast majority of people simply return to their old ways because they set themselves on a program of behaviors that they can’t possibly keep up.”

Take action: Accept that permanent change doesn’t happen overnight. Start with small, simple steps (swap your afternoon vanilla latte for home brewed coffee) that gradually move you closer towards your goals.

Paying top dollar for a gym membership each month? Take a good look at how often you’re actually using it (Be honest!). If you aren’t hitting the gym regularly, you aren’t doing your body—or your wallet—any favors, says Kimberly Horn, a certified financial planner for Mission Wealth Management. There are plenty of other ways to get in a good workout without the gym, so don’t waste your money paying for something you aren’t using! Running outside, doing bodyweight exercises like pushups and planks, or jumping rope at the park are all free and effective ways to stay fit, Horn says.

Take action: Figure out the real reason you’ve been avoiding the gym. Do you love it but never have time to go? Try scheduling your weekly workouts like you do for an important meeting to make your time and money count. But if you prefer working out at home or outdoors (and do so regularly), your gym membership may not be necessary. Ask about your gym’s policies to see if you can cancel (or at least freeze) your membership without penalty.

Pay Yourself First

“It’s important to save at least 10 percent of your earnings,” says Jim Martin, a financial advisor for the New River Financial Group.
The same idea applies to your well-being—take care of yourself first so that you have enough energy to give to everyone else. Make exercise, sleep, and eating well a priority and find ways to automate healthy habits as often as possible.

Take action: Open up a 401k (especially if your employer matches it) or a ROTH IRA and automatically have 10 percent of every paycheck deposited into your account. And when it comes to your body, make your health top priority. It may seem like other responsibilities are more important, but if you’re not taking care of yourself, you’re not going to perform your best at work, at home, or in the gym (when you finally drag yourself there). Taking time to exercise, de-stress, and rejuvenate is not a luxury, it’s a necessity.

Be Patient

 

Saving money (and losing weight) requires dedication and consistency over time. Of course you won’t always be perfect and you might slip up every now and then, but understanding that your plan is a long-term goal will help you maintain realistic expectations and stick with it, says Casey Bond, a financial expert and managing editor for GoBankingRates.com.

Take action: If you get frustrated by not seeing major changes, try the snapshot technique: Every three months, take a screenshot of your bank account balance (be sure to leave out sensitive private information), and a full-body pic of yourself. It may be harder to recognize on a day-to-day basis, but the proof is in the pictures.

read more:http://bit.ly/SYakDh

9 Common Mistakes That Age You

9 Common Mistakes That Age You

Eating Sweets
The average American eats 150 pounds of sugar each year—18 percent of our calories. You know the health implications of this, from obesity to type II diabetes, but it can also be as much of a wrinkle-causing culprit as sun exposure and smoking. That’s because a process called glycation causes sugars to attach to proteins in collagen and elastin, which can make skin look older. The aging effects of excess sugar consumption become visible around age 35 and accelerate rapidly after that.

Youth boosters: Limit your sugar intake to 6 1⁄4 teaspoons (or 25 grams) a day. Fiber slows sugar absorption, so opt for whole foods like an orange over its juices (OJ has the same sugar content as soda). When a sugar craving hits, it’s often because you’re thirsty, so try having a glass of water or seltzer instead of something sweet. If that doesn’t help, have a piece of dark chocolate or fresh berries.

9 Common Mistakes That Age You

Working Too Hard
Research has found that a bad job—whether it’s a career you don’t enjoy or working long hours—can increase the risk of heart disease and speed up cell aging, as well as minimize the time you spend getting exercise, healthy meals and sleep. Long-term chronic stress—a common problem for the overworked—also impairs brain function.

Youth Boosters: If you can’t change your stressors outright (think: a difficult boss, travel schedule or workload), draw up a list of things that make you happy—a pet’s wet kisses or your favorite tea—and add them into your day. Complaining about your job can make stress worse, so resist the urge to gripe, and replace complaints with thoughts of gratitude.

9 Common Mistakes That Age You

Eating Inflammatory Foods
Advanced glycation end products (AGEs) form when sugars and fats react with a protein, causing a structure to change irreversibly, and then attach to many things in the body and cause damage. While we can create AGEs in our body after eating sugar, we can also straight-up consume these AGEs via foods that are processed and/or heated. Browning, caramelizing, grilling, roasting, broiling and frying create AGEs. Highly processed and canned foods heated during processing, as well as high-fat dairy products like cheese, are also culprits. AGEs can increase inflammation and oxidation that cause aging and age-related diseases affecting the heart, brain, bones and joints, kidneys, insulin resistance, anemia and skin.

Youth Boosters: Your best bets to reduce the consumption of AGEs are to eat raw when possible, eat foods in their whole form and cook them with a water-based method (like steaming, poaching or boiling) or marinate in an acid (like vinegar or lemon juice) before cooking. Eating a variety of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory foods can also help reduce the inflammation and oxidation that AGEs cause, so go for berries, sweet potatoes and leafy greens.

9 Common Mistakes That Age You

Skipping Resistance Training
Women lose approximately 5 percent of their muscle mass every decade after the age of 30. Resistance training is the only thing that reverses this and it may even increase muscle growth to previous levels or above them. Strength training is also great for bone density and increasing energy and strength. It keeps the metabolism running, helps with balance and stamina and is good for the heart. More muscle tone also means less saggy skin.

Youth Boosters: Aim for 20 minutes of resistance training three times a week, using weights or bands for curls, presses, rows, squats and lunges—or your own body weight for push-ups, chair dips, squats, lunges and planks. Pair this training with 30 minutes of cardio five days a week.

9 Common Mistakes That Age You

Skimping on Sleep
Getting regular sleep isn’t a luxury—it’s a medical need. Lack of sleep releases cortisol, which can age us internally and externally. Consistency is key, too: a 2011 study found that changes in how much or how little test subjects slept over a five-year period in late middle age were associated with an accelerated cognitive decline equivalent to four to seven years of aging!

Youth Boosters: Getting a solid 7 1⁄2 hours of uninterrupted sleep per night lets you cycle through several REM patterns; it’s in this stage of sleep that the body is able to repair itself, and is important for healing, memory, skin elasticity, normal cortisol levels and metabolism. To encourage sleep, keep your room at 65 degrees, and maintain the same sleep and wake hours. Valerian tea or tart cherry juice, which help to stimulate melatonin production, are also great natural sleep aids. If tension or restless legs keep you up at night, take 1 to 2 teaspoons of magnesium citrate powder mixed with water or juice to relax those muscles.

9 Common Mistakes That Age You

Forsaking Fat
Women typically cut fats from their diet as they age, because they’re trying to cut calories. But good, healthy fats like omega-3 fatty acids help to keep skin supple, boost brain health, keep the heart strong, fight diabetes and can increase lifespan. Cutting omega-3s increases cellular inflammation that accelerates the aging process, and eventually leads to organ dysfunction and loss of function. It also makes your skin look more irritated, less radiant and older.

Youth Boosters: Consume more extra virgin olive oil, almonds, avocados and fatty fish like wild salmon but avoid vegetable oils rich in omega-6s (corn, soy, sunflower, safflower) and limit saturated fats found in butter and cheese. We need 2 1⁄2 grams of DHA and EPA omega-3 fatty acids per day, which you can get with a tablespoon of cod liver oil or via a purified fish oil supplement.

9 Common Mistakes That Age You

Bad Posture
People typically lose about 1 centimeter of stature every 10 years after age 40. Rounding of the upper back, lower back pain and a forward head position are the most typical age-related posture concerns. Sitting, standing and bending incorrectly don’t just add years to your appearance but take a physical toll, too. When we sit or stand with our bones misaligned, our muscles work overtime and it weakens our joints. Good posture helps you look healthy, stay strong and flexible, eliminate or avoid pain, increase energy, be more relaxed and maintain mobility.

Youth Boosters: When seated, sit on your sitz bones (the bony part of your butt that you feel when you sit on a firm surface). When standing, draw your chin in to look at your ankles, let your weight move back into your heels, take each shoulder back and down, and back your head up without lifting your chin too high—and for bending, bow from your hip joints, not your waist.

9 Common Mistakes That Age You

Skipping Sex
“Getting busy” contributes to greater happiness, a stronger immune system, good circulation and caloric burn and can even help you live up to eight years longer, according to one study. Some researchers say sex also boosts the production of human growth hormone, which improves muscle tone and makes you look younger and more fit. Chemicals released during sex reduce stress and improve energy, well-being and mood.

Youth Boosters: The average American couple has sex twice a week, but it’s most important that both partners are reasonably satisfied with the frequency. Scheduling sex can help trigger your desire, as can fantasizing for 10 minutes a day on your own or trying something new like sexy lingerie or a new position to keep things interesting. To “wake up” your pelvic area and stave off a low libido, try three sets of 10 Kegel exercises every day for four weeks.

9 Common Mistakes That Age You

Forgetting the Sunblock
Of course the most serious result of too much sun is skin cancer, but it also causes wrinkles, sun spots, broken capillaries and a dry, dull complexion—and it’s not just from baking on the beach. 80 percent of sun exposure comes from cumulative everyday outings whether walking or driving (UVA light travels through car windows). Additional sources include reflected light from sand, water and snow; mirrored rooms with large windows; high altitudes; and the ultraviolet radiation responsible for the UV index on a cloudy day.

Youth Boosters: Apply a daily moisturizer containing an SPF 30 or higher (zinc oxide and titanium dioxide ingredients are chemical-free) to all exposed areas. Wear protective clothing, including a hat, too, and limit your exposure—even on cloudy days. Shield your eyes and surrounding skin with sunglasses that have UV protection of 400 or higher.

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