Category Archives: Did You Know?

Letting Go Of Some Things , Is A Good Thing

Most people kick off January by creating resolutions that drastically aim to add healthy habits to their daily lives (which doesn’t always work, by the way ― and that’s OK). But sometimes the best thing we can do for ourselves is to let some things go instead.

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“The new year offers a fresh opportunity, while the weight of the past keeps us in a place of inaction,” said Olecia Christie, a certified life coach and owner of Optix Communications in San Antonio, noting that it’s important to discern when to release the things that no longer serve our own growth and happiness. 

With that in mind, here are a few things you should consider leaving behind in the new year, according to Christie and other experts:

Comparing your life to others’ on Instagram

In this era of social media, it always appears that everyone is living their best life — that is, everyone except you. Ibinye Osibodu-Onyali, a licensed marriage and family therapist at The Zinnia Practice in California, said you should remember that social media is a highlight reel. Comparing your daily life to a single picture capturing a perfect moment isn’t the best use of your time.

Instead, Osibodu-Onyali suggested engaging with the people you admire in 2020.

“Rather than spending so many hours per week scrolling mindlessly, begin to actually connect with people you admire on social media. Send them a DM, ask for advice, seek out actual mentorship,” she said. “You’ll be surprised how many new friends you will acquire just by reaching out, rather than being a jealous onlooker.”

Letting fear hold you back from something you want to do

Anthony Freire, the clinical director and founder of The Soho Center for Mental Health Counseling in New York, said in order to release fear, shame and guilt, you must first “shine a spotlight” on them.

“On your deathbed, you don’t want to be kicking yourself for not having completed your bucket list for any reason, but especially because of feelings like guilt, fear and shame — which are only problematic feelings because you’ve told yourself that you should feel that way,” he said.

Worrying about things you cannot control

a man sitting in a chair talking on a cell phone

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It’s unrealistic to suggest giving up worry or stress entirely ― these feelings are a normal part of life. Instead, try to focus just on the worries you can take action on.

“Focus your thoughts on things you can change. When you have a list of worry thoughts, write out what you can change and what you can’t. Work on the situation that you can change, and just release the rest. It takes a lot of time and practice to learn this skill, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll find that you’ll worry less,” Osibodu-Onyali explained.

For some, this is easier said than done. If you find that you’re unable to manage your excessive worrying ― especially over things out of your control ― it might be worth seeking advice from a professional. This could be a sign of an anxiety disorder, which is a very real and common condition.

Old grudges or grievances

Research shows holding onto a grudge or anger for longer than necessary can be toxic for your physical and mental health. Right now is the perfect opportunity to work on letting go of some old baggage “by either working on repairing strained relationships or closing the chapter on relationships that cannot be salvaged,” Osibodu-Onyali said.

This doesn’t apply to people who have severely damaged or hurt you, but could be useful for someone you’ve grown distant with or just no longer envision as a healthy part of your life. You can either choose to move forward or let go.

“Although saying goodbye to a relationship can be tough, the closure can be very freeing,” Osibodu-Onyali said.

What other people think of you

a group of people standing in a room

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There’s a saying that goes “what other people think of you is none of your business.” It’s important to know what your values are and to be grounded in them, so that you’re not swayed by the thoughts of others. Osibodu-Onyali said she often challenges her clients by asking: “So what if they don’t like you? What happens next?” She said more often than not, the answer is usually “nothing.”

“The truth is that the world doesn’t end and you don’t have to be liked by everyone,” she said. “Stick to your core group of supporters who truly love and respect you, and don’t spend time worrying about the people who don’t quite get you. If they don’t get you, that’s OK. You can’t be a part of every group.”

The need to be right in every conflict

We’ve all strived to win arguments; however, that can cause more stress than it’s worth. Freire said letting go of the need to win “takes up enormous energy because people tend to want to be right.”

“How many times do we fight with someone and we’re simply fighting to be right?” he said. “We say things we can’t take back and later we apologize and think to ourselves ‘I overreacted’ or ‘We fought over something so stupid.’ Sometimes we don’t even remember why we were fighting to begin with. Sometimes trivial things we get stuck on are just smaller manifestations of larger underlying issues.”

These kinds of interactions can often lead to “negative self-talk and anxiety as [we] overanalyze the situation and stress about the impact of the interaction,” according to Elise Hall, a licensed and independent clinical social worker in Massachusetts.

Instead, try looking at a fight as a problem to be solved (experts say there’s one phrase that can easily help you do this with a partner). This can help you let go of the need to be right and put your focus on a solution.

This all might be challenging, but it could be worth it to increase your joy — even just by a fraction.

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Deficiency in Vitamin B12? Start looking at your eyes!

Vitamin B12 deficiency is one of the most common nutrient deficiencies in the world, especially among the elderly age group. Vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin, is very important in keeping the body’s nerve and blood cells healthy. So when there is insufficient levels of this vitamin, the body suffers.

Vitamin B12 plays an important role in the production of DNA and RNA, two molecules that are quite essential in the coding, decoding, regulation and expression of genes. Moreover, just like other B vitamins, B12 plays a role in the conversion of carbohydrates into energy.

Given its many uses in the different bodily processes, one is bound to suffer when this vitamin is lacking. For pregnant women, low levels of vitamin B12 could mean an increased risk of neural tube defects. For others, they may be at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and other health issues.

Fortunately, vitamin B12 deficiency can be easily addressed once identified and diagnosed. What’s also good here is there are certain signs and symptoms that could help determine the presence of this condition. There are even those that could be seen just by examining the eyes.

According to Mercola, a slight yellowing of the eyes could be indicative of the condition. Eye twitching and eyelid spasms are also signs that could help pinpoint vitamin B12 deficiency. In rare cases, optic nerve damage that could lead to vision loss may happen.

Should these signs become evident to you one day, you need to go see a doctor right away. Vitamin B12 deficiency may be easily reversed with intravenous vitamin B12 treatment and supplementation. The signs and symptoms may appear suddenly or gradually, so it’s best to have regular checkups.

Vitamin B12 can be obtained through diet. Meat and meat by-products are good sources of this nutrient. This means strict vegetarians and vegans are at a higher risk of developing this deficiency. For these types of eaters, Medical News Today recommends consuming yogurt, low-fat milk, cheese, eggs, fortified cereals and nutritional yeast.

It’s also important to note that even meat-eaters are at risk of developing this deficiency. Apparently, there are people that absorb nutrients poorly due to the insufficient stomach acid needed to break the protein bond in the different meats consumed. So experts advise to take vitamin B12 supplements.

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Unhealthy Snacking- Now You Know

Snacking when you’re not hungry

Losing touch with your body’s natural hunger and satisfaction signals can lead to chronic overeating and unhealthy extra pounds—which increases your risk for diabetes, heart disease, and other serious conditions. And if it’s junk foods you snack on, you’re also flooding your body with unhealthy ingredients. By paying attention to your hunger signals and switching to healthy snacks, you can boost nutrition, control cravings, and avoid energy slumps. Your weight will fall to a healthier level, and you’ll replace unhealthy trans and saturated fat, sugar, refined carbohydrates, and extra sodium with more nutritious fare.

How to fix it: Eat because you’re hungry—not because you’re stressed, bored, angry, or sad. And finish eating when you feel just a little bit full, not stuffed. Avoid keeping unhealthy food in your home, or at least make sure you have more healthy foods, like fresh fruits, veggies, nuts. Think low-fat versus fatty treats; whole-grain versus unhealthy carbs. And when you eat those healthy snacks, eat them as if they were a meal: on a plate, accompanied by a glass of water, with you sitting down at the table.

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Tips

  • Since the dirt rings in collars are oil stains, shampoo for oily hair will remove them. Rub it into the fabric before washing the garment.
  • Remove ink spots from clothing by squeezing toothpaste on the spot. Scrub and rinse thoroughly.
  • Remove rust spots from chrome car bumpers using a piece of tin foil dipped in Coca-Cola.
  • A thick paste made from baking soda and water will remove perspiration stains from clothing. It will also remove urine stains from car seats.
  • Lemon juice and salt rubbed into a paste, will remove rust stains from clothing.
  • Cotton dipped in alcohol will clean dirty photographs.
  • Salad oil will remove tar from your feet.
  • Keep old toothbrushes – they are extremely handy for cleaning nooks and crannies other cleaning equipment cannot get into.
  • Insert yogurt into the vagina to cure a yeast infection.(See a doctor if there is no improvement within 24 hours).
  • Eat fresh parsley to reduce the acidity of urine and relieve symptoms of bladder infections.
  • Toothpaste dabbed onto a pimple will dry it out.
  • Dolomite tablets will relieve the symptoms of heartburn.
  • In an emergency shampoo can be used in the place of shaving cream.

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Easy Non-Equipment Exercises

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Diamond Push Ups

Start in a plank position. Bring index fingers and thumbs to meet, forming a triangle under chest. Bend elbows and lower torso as close to ground as possible. Push through palms to straighten arms. Modify this move by dropping to knees. Do 10 reps.

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PLANK UPS

Start in a forearm plank. Keeping abs tight and spine long, pick up right arm and right palm on ground. Repeat on left side, ending up in a high-plank position. Now reverse the movement, replacing right palm with right elbow and left palm with left elbow. That’s 1 rep. Be sure to keep hips still and facing the ground throughout the routine. Do 10 reps, alternating starting arms with each rep.

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Alkaline Diet~ Did You Know?

Alkaline Diet

By Sonya Collins

The Promise

It’s a pitch Hollywood celebs love: that the alkaline diet — also known as the alkaline ash diet or alkaline acid diet — can help you lose weight and avoid problems like arthritis and cancer. The theory is that some foods, like meat, wheat, refined sugar, and processed foods, cause your body to produce acid, which is bad for you.

So, according to the “science” behind this diet, eating specific foods that make your body more alkaline can protect against those conditions as well as shed pounds. The alkaline diet really rocketed into the news when Victoria Beckham tweeted about an alkaline diet cookbook in January 2013.

What You Can and Can’t Eat

Most fruits and vegetables, soybeans and tofu, and some nuts, seeds, and legumes are alkaline-promoting foods, so they’re fair game.

Dairy, eggs, meat, most grains, and processed foods, like canned and packaged snacks and convenience foods, fall on the acid side and are not allowed.

Most books that tout the alkaline diet say you shouldn’t have alcohol or caffeine, either.

Level of Effort: High

You’ll be cutting out a lot of foods you may be used to eating.

Limitations: Many foods are off-limits, and so are alcohol and caffeine.

Cooking and shopping: You can get fruits and vegetables at the grocery store. It may take a while to learn how to prep and cook your meals when you use fresh foods.

Does It Allow for Restrictions or Preferences?

Vegetarians and vegans: This diet is mostly to completely vegetarian. It also works for vegans, in that dairy is off-limits.

Gluten-free: The diet excludes wheat, but to avoid gluten completely, you’ll need to check food labels carefully, as gluten is not just in wheat.

Besides wheat, the diet nixes most of the other major triggers for food allergies, including milk, eggs, peanuts, walnuts, fish, and shellfish. It’s also good for people who are trying to avoid fat and sugar.

What Else You Should Know

Cost: Many web sites with information about the alkaline diet also sell courses, books, supplements, and alkaline-infused water, food, and drinks. You do not need to buy these things to follow the alkaline diet. There are many free alkaline food charts online that list foods you can buy at the grocery store.

What Dr. Melinda Ratini Says:

Does It Work?

Maybe, but not for the reasons it claims.

First, a little chemistry: A pH level measures how acid or alkaline something is. A pH of 0 is totally acidic, while a pH of 14 is completely alkaline. A pH of 7 is neutral. Those levels vary throughout your body. Your blood is slightly alkaline, with a pH between 7.35 and 7.45. Your stomach is very acidic, with a pH of 3.5 or below, so it can break down food. And your urine changes, depending on what you eat — that’s how your body keeps the level in your blood steady.

The alkaline diet claims to help your body maintain its blood pH level. In fact, nothing you eat is going to substantially change the pH of your blood. Your body works to keep that level constant.

But the foods you’re supposed to eat on the alkaline diet are good for you and will support a healthy weight loss: lots of fruits and vegetables, and lots of water. Avoiding sugar, alcohol, and processed foods is healthy weight-loss advice, too.

As to the other health claims, there’s some early evidence that a diet low in acid-producing foods like animal protein (such as meat and cheese) and bread and high in fruits and veggies could help prevent kidney stones, keep bones and muscles strong, improve heart health and brain function, reduce low back pain, and lower risk for type 2 diabetes. But researchers aren’t sure of some of these claims yet.

People who believe in the alkaline diet say that though acid-producing foods shift our pH balance for only a little while, if you keep shifting your blood pH over and over, you can cause long-lasting acidity.

Is It Good for Certain Conditions?’

Following an alkaline diet means choosing fruits and vegetables over higher-calorie, higher-fat choices. You will also shun prepared foods, which often have a lot of sodium.

That’s great news for heart health because these steps help lower blood pressure and cholesterol, which are big risk factors for heart disease.

Getting to a healthy weight is also important in preventing and treating diabetes and osteoarthritis.

Some studies have found that an alkaline environment may make certain chemotherapy drugs more effective or less toxic. But it has not been shown that an alkaline diet can do this or help prevent cancer. If you have cancer, talk to your doctor or dietitian about your nutritional needs before starting any type of diet.

The Final Word

The emphasis on fruits and vegetables that is at the core of alkaline diets offers the promise of healthy weight loss. No special gear or supplements are required.

You’ll have the best success with it if you like to choose and experiment with new foods and love to cook.

But following an alkaline diet will be tough for many people.

A lot of favorite foods that are allowed in moderation in other plans (including lean meat, low-fat dairy, bread, and sweets) are forbidden here. Protein is limited to plant-based sources such as beans and tofu. This means you will have to make sure you get enough protein and calcium.

Eating out also can be a challenge. If you travel a lot for work or have a busy schedule, you might feel bogged down by all the food selection and prep.

Finally, many alkaline diets fail to address a major factor in weight loss and wellness success: exercise. You should include fitness in any healthy eating plan that you choose. The American Heart Association and the CDC recommend getting at least 150 minutes of exercise each week. If you have any medical problems or are out of shape, talk to your doctor first.

Sources

© 2018 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

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