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Showing posts with the label Health

Coronavirus, the Butterfly Effect, and the Myth of Your Insignificance

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Contributing editor Jennifer Davis-Flynn reflects on the reverberating and unpredictable effects of acts of harm and love during a global pandemic. Plus, self-care practices to fuel your compassion.It’s easy to feel helpless and insignificant during the best of times. These are not those times.2020 is unrecognizable from 2019. We are afraid of strangers and crowds for new, potentially deadly reasons. We are untethered from our comforting routines. We are frightened by the very real loss of our livelihood, our health, and our loved ones.Every day, we wonder, when will the pandemic end? Every day, we struggle to make plans and envision a future. We are wayfinding with the only resources we have: intuition and discernment. There is no other way to move forward, when it feels like no one is coming to save us.The Butterfly Effect is a founding principle of Chaos TheoryAnd yet...A surprise wildflower on my deckIn May, I planted four sheets of seed paper that I got from a local restaurant, i…

Yep, There's a Reason Your Feet Are Always Cold

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Some people just have cold feet, in the literal sense. Are you most comfortable wearing UGGs, even in the spring? Does your partner complain about your ice-cold toes brushing up against their shins during the night? If your feet are always cold, there's an explanation. We talked to Danielle DesPrés, DPM, a board-certified foot and ankle surgeon and podiatrist, to learn more.Dr. DesPrés told POPSUGAR that it's not uncommon to have cold feet some of the time, but if it's constant, there may be an underlying condition that's causing it. She suggested speaking with your doctor if cold feet is a recurrent problem for you.What Are Some Common Causes of Cold Feet?Dr. DesPrés said that poor circulation is one of the most common causes of cold feet. "As the arteries move away from the heart and into the legs and feet, they progressively become smaller and more easily blocked with fatty plaque," she explained. "Since the arteries going to the feet are the smallest…

These Rollerblading Videos Are So Unbelievable, You Need to See Them For Yourself

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Vasilisa Maslova is a freestyle slalom skater from Belarus who won the world title in the Netherlands two years ago - and her skating shows it. She spins with grace and does tricks on her heels and toes all while avoiding cones laid out in front of her. Really, she looks like a swan but with more strength and power. Swans seem fragile; she seems fearless.Maslova, 27, told POPSUGAR that she's been skating for 10 years and that she runs her own freestyle slalom skating school. Some of the footage she posts on Instagram is of her practicing specific skills, and other videos she films are straight improvisation. She glides in all directions (even backwards) and does skills that don't even look possible on wheels!"I used to restrain myself and couldn't feel free on skates," Maslova said in an Instagram caption in May of 2019. "It took many years before I had started to show my inside world." She added that she finally feels free in every step she takes with …

14 Beginner-Friendly Ballet Classes That'll Have You in a Plié in No Time

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I don't know about you, but doing the same type of exercise routine everyday can cause me to fall into a workout slump. And when I do catch myself starting to get lazy with my workouts, I like to switch things up a bit with dance cardio. There are tons of fun, fast-paced dance videos out there, but slowing it down to focus and engage your core, posture, and balance can be just as hard of a workout, too. Don't let these ballet classes fool you - you'll be sweating and feeling it in no time!Related: Ballet Dancers Have the Most Stunning Instagram Grids - Here Are 27 You Need to Follow

via POPSUGAR Fitness

12 Foods Experts Say to Avoid If You Have Anxiety

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While anxiety plays out in the brain, it can often start in our stomach. "The foods we choose to eat have a direct effect on our mood, sleep, and physical health, all of which are connected to our behavioral well-being and the potential for feeling more anxious," Jason Doescher, MD, chief medical officer at Mobe, told POPSUGAR.He explained that food plays a substantial role in mental health because our gut directly impacts the production of neurotransmitters. These chemical substances carry messages from the gut to the brain. Inflammation in the stomach reduces our body's ability to absorb the nutrients needed to produce key neurotransmitters.While food sensitivities that trigger inflammation and anxiety may vary by person, POPSUGAR spoke to several experts to learn what foods are the common culprits. Keep reading to learn about 12 foods you should try to avoid if you suffer from anxiety.

via POPSUGAR Fitness

This 30-Minute, Full-Body Dumbbell Workout Will Challenge Your Entire Body From Head to Toe

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If you're looking for a fun total-body workout using dumbbells, NASM- and ACE-certified celebrity trainer Beth Alexander has created this 30-minute workout just for POPSUGAR readers. She said this workout "challenges your core and your entire body from head to toe and in all directions." Sounds intense!"These are compound movements, which means they work more than one muscle group at a time, making your workout more efficient and more effective," Alexander told POPSUGAR. She added that all of these exercises challenge your core while building strength in your legs and arms.This workout should take you between 30 and 45 minutes, depending on how familiar you are with the exercises or how many reps you choose. Beginners should choose the lower amount of reps, and those more advanced should choose the higher amount of reps. Go for lighter dumbbells if you're a strength-training newbie, and if you've been doing this for a while, don't be afraid to chall…

Why This Doctor Doesn't Recommend Using a Melatonin Diffuser

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With the rise of vaping, it's no surprise that vape pens and diffusers for melatonin now exist. Aimed at people who struggle with sleeping, melatonin diffusers are designed to give the user a hit of melatonin to help regulate their sleep cycles and put them to sleep. However, the jury is still out on melatonin diffusers. We spoke with neurologist Dr. Alcibiades Rodriguez, assistant professor in the department of neurology at the NYU Grossman School of Medicine, who specializes in sleep medicine, to get his take on melatonin and using a diffuser.While Dr. Rodriguez advocates for using the proper amount of melatonin to help get your circadian rhythm on track - not for insomnia - he's hesitant to make a judgment call on melatonin diffusers. "It is too early to tell yet," he told POPSUGAR of these fairly new devices. "I think I would like to see some safety data." He noted that taking a regulated amount of melatonin daily is fine to help get your sleep-wake cyc…

Meal Prep a Week of Protein Smoothie Overnight Oats, Packed With Nutrients and No Added Sugar

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While prepping my overnight oats for the week, I had a revelation: why not use a green protein smoothie as the liquid instead of just plain almond milk or soy milk? I know green oatmeal looks a little weird, but I promise, just like those green smoothies you love, you can't taste the spinach at all!I used a basic smoothie recipe made with spinach, banana, and vanilla plant-based protein powder. If you just can't do the green color, add blueberries or chocolate protein powder to your smoothie. Each serving of this creamy oatmeal offers 15.7 grams of protein and a filling 13.1 grams of fiber.This recipe makes five servings for the week, but don't worry - the fifth jar tastes just as fresh and delicious as the first. It has a very subtle sweet vanilla flavor with just 8.2 grams of sugar, but if you want yours sweeter, feel free to add a little maple syrup.You can enjoy your overnight oats cold, but I actually preferred warming mine up in the microwave for two minutes. With ju…

Rael's Heating Patch Is the Portable Period Cramp Relief I've Always Wanted

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Years ago, my mom was kind enough to make me a homemade heating pad - a fabric tube filled with rice that I could pop in the microwave whenever my period cramps were out of control. It was a huge step up from my electric heating pad, which required me to sit near an outlet for hours on end.I still use this DIY heating pad to battle my cramps and PMS, but it has its unique inconveniences. It's a little bulky, I have to carry it around with me, and it cools down within about 45 minutes. I get what I like to call "marathon cramps," so that means getting up and reheating my heating pad several times throughout the day.These are the reasons why I was so excited to road-test Rael's Heating Patch for Menstrual Cramps ($6 for a 3-count box), essentially a thin, stick-on heating pad that is infused with botanicals like lemon balm, juniper berry, jasmine, rosehip, and dandelion root, to further decrease pain and reduce bloating - and it did not disappoint.Meant to be applied o…

Snake Pose Belongs at the Beginning of Your Yoga Flow - Here’s Why

How Cancer Shaped Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Life and Work

The name Ruth Bader Ginsburg became almost synonymous with strength and stamina as she rose to prominence in judicial and feminist circles throughout her long career. Famously nicknamed the Notorious RBG and known for her grueling fitness regimen, the late Supreme Court justice also struggled with cancer and other health issues for the better part of her time on the bench — culminating with her death on Sept. 18 at the age of 87 of complications from metastatic pancreatic cancer.Ginsburg’s health issues became public in 1999, six years after her appointment to the Supreme Court, when she had surgery for early-stage colon cancer. Ten years later, she went through the same process for pancreatic cancer. And nearly a decade after that, the Supreme Court announced that Ginsburg had undergone surgery to have two cancerous growths removed from her left lung. She announced in July 2020 that she’d been treated earlier that year for cancerous lesions on her liver, but made clear her intentions…

Here’s Why Peloton’s Guided Stretching Videos Are One of the App’s Best Features

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Throughout all the Peloton hype, no one is talking about what I believe to be one of the app's best features. So, I've taken it upon myself to share what I think is currently Peloton's best-kept secret: the music-backed guided stretching videos.For those who haven't taken the Peloton plunge, the app offers more than just cycling videos. The $13 membership gets you a plethora of guided workout sessions from strength training to running to meditation - and yes, stretching.When it comes to warming up for and cooling down from workouts, I'm notoriously lazy - but the music behind Peloton's stretching videos has been a total game-changer.Peloton instructor Olivia Amato's 10-Minute Full-Body Stretch sparked this obsession. One day after a spin session, I stumbled on the video. I was feeling tight and tired until Justin Bieber's "All Around Me" hit my ears.Related: The Original Peloton Bike Is on Sale - Here's How Much It'll Cost You I could h…

This Vitamin C Drink Gives Me a Much-Needed Boost, and It Tastes Like Creamsicle

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When I received a sample of Cymbiotika Synergy Liposomal Vitamin C ($59) - a liquid supplement that can be added to water, juice, yogurt, or your favorite blended beverage - I figured it was worth a try. With fall and winter approaching, it seemed like the perfect time to up my intake of vitamin C.Most supplements I've taken have been in capsule form, but this product - made from fermented tapioca - claims to allow for superior absorption and bioavailability, with all-natural vegan ingredients. It also contains bamboo silica, which studies show may improve bone health and aid in collagen production for the health of skin and nails. This is appealing to me because I suffer from an autoimmune disease, rheumatoid arthritis, which causes some hair loss and puts me at greater risk for developing osteoporosis. I also like the idea of upping my vitamin C, an antioxidant that is important for healing, immune function, and the formation of collagen.Related: I Loved Sweetener Until I Tried …

We Need a COVID-19 Vaccine. We Also Need Transparency About Its Development

The authorization of an effective vaccine will mark perhaps the biggest turning point in the battle against coronavirus, but only if enough people are willing to get vaccinated. There have been substantial declines in public willingness to get vaccinated against COVID-19, despite immense, unprecedented public investments in vaccine development. In one survey, barely half of Americans said they would get the vaccine as soon as it was available, numbers that will undermine the benefits of even a highly effective vaccine.It is no mystery why trust in a potential vaccine has plummeted. Operation Warp Speed, the Trump Administration’s $10 billion vaccine initiative, and other vaccine efforts have compressed processes that usually take years into months. This speed alone can raise concerns, but to date, that pace has been matched with strict adherence to the basic principles of scientific integrity. However, increasing politicization of key regulatory bodies and unexplained decisions in tri…

Shelah Marie's Meditation Mixtape Is For Black Women Who Don't Feel Represented in Wellness

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"This mixtape is for me, you, yo mama, and your cousin, too," Shelah Marie says at the intro of her Meditation Mixtape. Her mixtape is for those who find meditation challenging, those who love reality TV and social media, and those who have an equal love for Vinyasa flow and trap music, she continues."Meditation is a real blanket term for an entire range of healing modalities and experiences," Shelah Marie told POPSUGAR. She's used it to center herself, to access peace and calmness, to combat anxiety, and to rewire negative self-talk and tackle self-limiting beliefs."How I got into meditation is I, like many people, had an upbringing where I felt like my needs weren't met. I didn't feel safe. I was the only Black person in a white environment," Shelah Marie said. Because of this, she grew up having low self-esteem and negative self-talk. In her mid-20s, she experienced a moment in her then-relationship that made her realize she was "reliv…

These 55+ Protein-Packed Vegan Breakfasts Will Keep You Full to Help You Lose Weight

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Get energized with the power of plants! These vegan breakfasts offer protein, fiber, and healthy fats to keep you satisfied for hours, so you're not hungry until lunch. Some of these recipes are quick, like the chocolate coconut almond overnight oats. While others take a little more time, like the sweet potato and kale tofu scramble. But they're all delicious and offer inspiration to make your morning a little brighter.Related: I Ate 4 Pieces of Fruit Every Day For 2 Weeks, and No, I Didn't Gain Weight

via POPSUGAR Fitness

If Worrying Keeps You Up at Night, It Might Be Time to Try Deep Sleep Meditation

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If you struggle with anxiety that makes it difficult to fall asleep, and stay asleep, deep sleep meditation might help.Deep sleep meditation lets your mind relax and let go of nagging worries that interfere with sleep. We spoke with Eli Bliliuos, a certified hypnotist who specializes in helping clients overcome insomnia. "The practice of deep sleep meditation can help those who suffer with insomnia or restless sleep," Bliliuos said. "It is especially helpful for those of us who think about life's challenges when trying to fall asleep."How Does Deep Sleep Meditation Work?Bliliuos explains that deep sleep meditation calms the mind and frees it of thoughts that would normally keep you awake at night. This technique can be achieved through meditation or hypnosis, where the mind is programmed to "relax and begin to shut down through bedtime routines that will allow you to fall asleep and stay asleep." The meditation or hypnosis sessions help to reduce or e…

Is All This Stress Stalling Your Sex Drive? Experts Explain How to Get It Back

We Asked 2 Experts to Explain How Stress Can Cause Shoulder Pain

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There are a myriad of ways that stress wreaks havoc on our bodies. From digestive issues - such as occasional stomach aches and irritable bowel syndrome - to sleepless nights, it seems that stress has the power to turn our lives upside down. So it comes as no surprise to learn that stress can cause physical pain in random places throughout the body, such as our shoulders.To find out more about how stress can cause shoulder pain, and what exactly you can do to help prevent or alleviate it, POPSUGAR spoke to two experts for more insight.How Does Stress Cause Shoulder Pain?As it turns out, not all stress affects the body in the same way. "Stress in itself is not the issue," explained Dr. Naresh Rao, DO, FAOASM, partner at Sports Medicine at Chelsea and head physician of the USA Men's National Water Polo Team. "True stress or 'eu-stress' is a good thing." Dr. Rao explained that it is actually excessive stress (the kind that goes beyond what you may have the…

If Your Workouts Are Getting Boring, Try This 21-Minute Total-Body Strengthening HIIT Sesh

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If you've been doing the same squat, lunge, and bicep curls combo day in and day out, it's time to mix up your workout. Trade in your overused exercises for something more intense and novel like Ashley Joi's, ISSA-certified and Centr app trainer, 21-minute high-intensity resistance training (HIRT) workout.
This workout was inspired by the Centr 6: Phase II program, and it was designed to "challenge your whole body and help you build muscle," Joi told POPSUGAR. "The work to rest style interval of HIIT and HIRT will have you giving your all for quick bursts of intense exercise, followed by periods of rest - burning maximum fat and calories as you go," she explained. This workout helps you burn fat because "The quick, intense exercise bursts will challenge your body's metabolic response." If this total-body blast sounds exactly like what you need, grab your dumbbells, some water, and get ready to work.Ashley Joi's 21-Minute High-Intensity …

This Stress-Melting Body Scan Meditation Takes Less Than 15 Minutes to Do From Bed

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Stress builds up, but that doesn't mean you need to let it overwhelm you and consume your day. As one friend of mine says, "Let it out, but let it go." Doing a body scan - easing up on tension in every part of your body mindfully and slowly - can help mitigate the anxiety you're feeling (a stress management expert even told us this in a past interview).The body scan meditation video here is an example of a quick and gentle session that can do its part to melt stress away when you need to most. It comes from yoga instructor Arianna Elizabeth, and she suggests putting on this meditation before a mid-day nap or bedtime while lying down. After some easy breathing, she will walk you through the body scan, which consists of bringing attention to the soles of your feet, up to the top of your head, and back down again. Not to mention, the piano-led music in the background, along with her voice, are super relaxing to listen to."What we really need to do is begin to train…

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