7 Ways to Cure Those Butterflies in Your Stomach

273179_6525Do you get nervous when you are going to do something new? Starting school, first day of work, or learning how to do a new task can all cause a persons stomach to become all tied in knots. If you are that kind of person who’s stomach seems to become its own personal barometer for what you are feeling and butterflies take up residence in your stomach more often than not – then here is some helpful ways to cure those butterflies.

  1. Deep Breaths – On your way to the meeting or new situation, breath deep, sit back, relax and clear your mind of anything that will take you away from your deep breathing and just breath. In and out, just breath.
  2. Eat Healthy – Keep your mind producing its own natural feel good chemicals by eating lots of fresh fruit and vegetables and whole grain foods, getting plenty of fresh air and sunshine and exercising regularly.
  3. Relax – Practicing relaxation techniques, meditation or even taking time for a regular walk on the beach can all help to reduce stress levels and facilitate a feeling of calm – helping us to wind down and relax.
  4. Try Herbs – These herbs might help to alleviate some of those anxious feelings: bugleweed, chamomile, feverfew, lemon balm, mullein and skullcap. These herbs will help to calm an upset stomach: catnip, chamomile, fennel, peppermint and willow bark.
  5. Be Prepared – There is no worse feeling than to know that you are not ready for your presentation. This is where the standard saying “Practice, Practice, Practice” comes in. Being prepared will help you recover better if you do make a mistake.
  6. Yoga – The asanas in yoga are what cleanses the neurons, which in turn allow the nervous system to react carefully to stress.
  7. Meditation – The benefits of meditation are manifold. When practicing meditation, your heart rate and breathing slow down, your blood pressure normalizes, you use oxygen more efficiently, and you sweat less.

Anit-Aging Skin Care Help

1039791_85503515Do you have age spots that seem to get darker by the day? Buffy or dark circles under your eyes that don’t seem to go away? Winkles that seem to be getting worse even though you use anti-aging creams? Do you have questions about what the best treatment for your aging face is? Each part of our body and each beauty concern we have needs different care, along with the fact that each persons skin ages differently. Below are some helpful tips to help you get a hold on your aging face and slow down the process.

Wear sunscreen! If you do only one thing for your skin this would be your best bet.

Bags under the eyes – This might be a clue that you are not getting enough sleep. If your eyes look different with different activities you may want to take note of what might be causing it. Drinking alcohol before bed may be a factor.

Dark circles under the eyes – If it is caused from a deficiency of vitamin K try using a cream with vitamin K and retinol, they significantly reduce the puffiness and discoloration in most patients.

Age Spots on your face and neck – Age spots and freckles don’t appear overnight so getting them to fade wont happen overnight either. Your best bet is to use Hydroquinone cream for lightening skin discolorations. Another more expensive option is an intense pulsed light laser, costs about $200 a visit.

Neck Wrinkles – The cheapest bet would be to use the same anti-aging treatment you use on your face, this will definitely slow down the aging process. To tighten and smooth sagginess on the neck, dermatologists often recommend a Thermage treatment, which uses radio frequency to heat the skin but costs about $2,500 a treatment.

Lose 10 Pounds Fast!

While going to physical therapy I learned that your core strength is very important. I was learning that while walking, running, and doing any kind of exercising you need to keep your abs tight. It goes right along with what I was reading the other day in Family Circle magazine about how to lose 10 pounds fast.

Experts have found that if you stand up straight when you walk, you’ll burn more calories, flatten your belly and look thinner. And really thats the goal, isn’t it? To look thinner and flatten your belly?

The simple trick to helping yourself become an ab-conscious walker is:

Before going out for a fitness walk, place a belt around the thinnest part of your waist(not through any belt loops). Make it snug, but not too tight. As you move, pull your abs up and your shoulders back so that the belt begins to feel almost loose. Wear the belt every time you go walking and in about 3 weeks you’ll automatically start tightening your abs.

Heres the workout plan designed by Brooke Siler –

  • 2 Minutes – Walk with your hands clasped on top of your head. This causes the heart to pump blood upward, increasing the cardio benefit and jump-starting the calorie burn.
  • 5 Minutes – Focus on your belt and the ab-conscious walking described above.
  • 2 Minutes – Make an effort to push harder off of your back foot and feel how that changes the dynamic of your gait.
  • 5 Minutes – Continue ab-conscious walking at a brisk pace.
  • 3 Minutes – Pump your arms, keeping elbows in (no chicken arms) and your fists moving in an arc from chin to hip level.
  • 5 Minutes – Return to a brisk ab-conscious walk.
  • 3 Minutes – Add large arm circles to engage your obliques and further elongate the waist. Circle forward and then backward.
  • 3 Minutes – Try one more burst of the ab-conscious brisk walking.
  • 2 Minutes – Slow it down to reduce your heart rate.

Tips for Cooking in Regular Cookware

531931_83735513If you haven’t heard, non-stick cookware, also known as teflon, emits chemicals when over-heated that have adverse effects on human and animal life causing the EPA to classify it as a likely carcinogen and has urged companies to eliminate it by 2015.

I know that non-stick is easy to use and clean but for your health it should not be used. So what can you do to make it easier to cook in regular cookware?

Here are a few slick tips:

Start with a good pan. Flimsy pans don’t distribute heat well and have hot spots that cause burning and sticking. Invest in some cookware that will last.

Hot pan, cold oil. Place the pan on the burner until you can feel the heat when you hold your palm open a few inches away. Then add your cooking fat, wait until you see it rippling or shimmering, and add your food.

Resist flipping and poking the food. When you are sauteing, meat and fish will stick to the pan at first. But wait a minute or two before you start flipping or poking it and you’ll find it releases quite nicely and has a good, even browning too.

Dry food won’t stick. Pat meat and seafood off with paper towels before cooking. This will also minimize spatters and enhance browning.

Don’t crowd the pan. Give your foods a little breathing room to keep them from steaming and make them easier to flip.

Turn the heat as you go. Start the pan over medium-high or high heat, then turn it down after a few minutes once the pan starts retaining heat.

Soak, then scrub. In the event of a messy pan, soak for 10 minutes or so before scrubbing.

10 Simple Ways to Relax

1191285_80138577Hard day at work? Kids driving you nuts at home? Need to find a way to relax and unwind? Here are 10 simple ways to relax.

  1. Rent a funny, happy movie, Laughter releases tension and helps put life back in perspective.
  2. Get moving! Pop in your favorite CD or turn to your favorite radio station and dance for a few songs. This will revitalize your body and mind and you’ll be ready to face anything.
  3. Have you ever heard of the phrase “take 5?” Set aside 5 or 10 minutes to have “you” time. Try waking up a little bit earlier than the rest of the house and enjoy the quiet alone (or with a nice cup of tea).
  4. Buy yourself a notebook or start a computer journal. Every night jot down happenings, thoughts and things accomplished that day, or even your frustrations. When your mind is “cleaned up,” it is easier to relax and fall asleep.
  5. Light a candle. Lavender, vanilla, sandalwood and spearmint are soothing scents to look for when purchasing special candles. The simple act of lighting a candle creates a soothing environment for you to relax in.
  6. Do yoga. If you don’t have time to join a yoga class at least once a week, then purchase a yoga video. Make time to do at least 15 minutes of yoga most days. This will help stretch and relax your muscles.
  7. Take a bubble bath. Put on some soft music, light a candle and enjoy a nice warm bubble bath. If you don’t want music, you can always take a book or magazine with you.
  8. Deep Breathe. Inhale deeply through your nostrils then exhale slowly through your mouth. Repeat several times until you begin to feel calm. Using this simple deep breathing technique can be helpful when you’re stuck in traffic with loud kids in the back seat.
  9. Use your imagination. Close your eyes and think about some place or thing that makes you feel calm. Hold that picture in your mind as you practice deep breathing. You might also try using imagery to relax while your scented candles burn and soothing music plays in the background.
  10. Read a book. Escape into a different world with a good book. The fictional world can be a great way to escape from the pressures of motherhood for half an hour or so.

The Skinny Jeans Workout

1075458_20766913I was reading CNN news online and came across this article ‘Skinny jeans’ class aims to aid your zip. Having never heard of this workout before I was interested to find out more about it. Jessica Ordona, a retail specialist with a commercial real estate firm in Bethesda, Maryland, says “It’s different than your typical workout class, it’s not high-impact cardio, but you’re sweating the whole time because you’re working every muscle group.”

The Skinny Jeans Workout concentrates on core muscles, balance and posture. A cross between ballet, butt-burning stretches and light weight lifting, the workout involves the entire body. Participants of the Skinny Jeans Workout class are encouraged to go barefoot during the class. Instructors say it increases the balance, and forces the body to be smarter. The class is held two days a week and each session is only a hour. Regulars at the class, swear that they have dropped several jean sizes ever since enrolling in the class months ago.

We have all worried about how we look in jeans and having a workout dedicated strictly to wearing jeans is attractive to most women and maybe even some men.

Another site, yourtotalhealth.ivillage.com, has written an article with 7 exercises you can try at home for whatever specific issue you are dealing with.

If you want to buy the DVD, your best price is Best Buy – Lisa G’s Skinny Jeans Workout DVD.

4 Common Health Issues Fixed

44646_9698Below are some health issues that you may not know anything about. Issues that may at times take you by surprise. Here are some helpful hints to get you on your way to getting back to normal as quickly as possible when these come up.

1. Bumps on your tongue – These little bumps are actually inflated taste buds. Unless the bumps spread or don’t go away after 7 days, they’re nothing to worry about. Simply rinse your mouth with salt water to speed healing.

2. Airplane stomach – Do you get gassy when you fly, or stomach pains from the gas? Believe it or not there is something called high-altitude flatus expulsion. There is less air pressure at high altitudes, so any gas trapped inside you expands. Try to avoid things like soda and beans. And once your are airborne, Gas-X wont help.

3. Exercise itch – If your legs itch when you’ve been exercising outdoors in the cool morning air, the temperature is probably to blame. Its not well understood, but increased blood flow to the skin in cold air can trigger the release of histamines, the same substances released during allergic reactions. Pre work-out stretches and an antihistamine like Benadryl can help.

4. Eyelid twitch – That irritating eyelid spasm is a sign that you are way too tired. Physical exhaustion and stress can make your facial nerves fire spontaneously for no reason. Catch up on some sleep and lay off the caffeine.

7 Ways To Stay Cool In The Heat

sweaty-manJuly is one of the hottest months of the year and many places in Oregon and beyond are experiencing some of their hottest temperatures. If your like my family and don’t have an air-conditioned home to retreat to, these hot days can be very unpleasant. Here are seven tips to help you stay cool during the triple digit days:

1. Drink water-staying hydrated is crucial in staying healthy and giving your body the water it needs to keep your body cool and functioning.

2. Get up early to start the fan-Keeping the air moving in your home can lower the temperature. Get up early while its still cool and let a little fresh air into your home. Leave your windows open during the night to get air flow as well.

3. Rinse your feet and face off before bed-Cooling off your extremities before bed can lower your body temperature and provide a brief respite long enough to get some sleep. Rinse your feet off in cold bath or shower water to cool down.

4. Avoid cooking and eating hot food-Hot food in your stomach will make you feel hotter. Now is the best time to get some icecream!

5. Limit the use of appliances in the home-Appliances put off heat in your home that you don’t want in there! Turn off ovens or microwaves, toasters or tvs and only use the essential appliances you need during the heat.

6. Find a river, lake or pool to cool off at-Find a local watering hole to relax in and make sure you wear sun screen!

7. Find refuge with a friend-Rent some movies and find a friend with air-conditioning!

If you have any other tips on how to stay cool during this heat wave, pleas post them in our comments section.

10 Ways to Regain your Focus

305196_4778-1024x766Concentration occurs when the brains prefrontal cortex, which controls high-level cognitive tasks, is awash with the right cocktail of neurotransmitters, hormones, and other body chemicals, particularly the “pleasure chemical” dopamine (you get a jolt of this when you eat delicious food, have sex, or encounter something new and exciting).  When dopamine levels rise, you subconsciously want more of the good feeling it gives you, so you’re driven to concentrate on whatever you’re doing to keep getting it. But when your dopamine starts to falter, your dopamine levels drop and you start looking for a new, pleasurable distraction to replace that dopamine hit.

Below are 10 ways to help you regain your focus.

1. Get a good nights sleep. Lack of sleep creates fatigue and fatigue creates stress. Getting the right amount of sleep creates a better mood, a better attitude, and with less fatigue comes more energy.

2. Have a snack. If your running on fumes and about to head into a marathon meeting, drink a glass of water and eat a snack with a balance  of carbohydrates, fat and protein, like an apple and a piece of cheese.

3. Start moving. A quick burst of aerobic exercise relieves stress and improves concentration by flooding the brain with oxygen and activating brain chemicals such as dopamine.

4. Think happy thoughts. Thinking of things that promote warmth, connection, and happiness reduces the hormones associated with stress, fear, and anger that can impede concentration.

5. Exercise your brain. Exercising your mental muscles will help preserve your ability to concentrate. Do crossword, and sudoku puzzles, or read challenging novels.

6. Limit multitasking. Trying to do two things at once can be disadvantageous even if the tasks are relatively simple. For  more info read – Study says: leave the multitasking to your computer.

7. Take breaks. Our attention naturally falters after we’ve been doing something for a while, so taking breaks helps us recharge.

8. Find your optimal time to work. For most people the morning is the best time to get work done but for some it may be the afternoon or night.

9. Visualize what you want to achieve. Try this focusing tip when distracted, close your eyes for a few moments and imagine successfully completing the task at hand.

10. Alternate high-stimulation and low-stimulation tasks. When concentrating on something that requires a lot of mental effort, rekindle the brain power by doing something routine, it will help you return to your task with a greater level of concentration.

Four Things Every Workout Plan Needs

zoomBeaches and pools are driving people to athletic clubs so they can get in shape and feel good. Summer is a great time to start or restart a workout plan. But setting up a workout plan that has a chance for success can be difficult. What kinds of lifts and exercises should one do? How often should one exercise? Here are four components that every successful workout plan should have.

1. Consistency: Whatever plan you create, only a consistent and concentrated effort will produce results. Set a reasonable, consistent goal that can be achieved, whether that is the decision to work out for three days a week or four. The goal is to make your workout plan a habit of your weekly schedule. Consistency will provide the training that your body needs to begin adjusting to your new and healthy life.

2. Creativity: Your work out plan should have a variety of different lifts and exercises. You may have a few favorites that you enjoy doing each time you work out, but there are multiple ways to exercise the same muscles. Furthermore, the variations in exercises can work minor muscles that may be missed in other lifts. Creativity also provides a freshness to your workouts and prevents the feeling of being in a rut or stuck in the same routine.

3. Balance: Any time you’re lifting weights, balance should always be in the forefront of your mind. What I mean by balance is that if you spend 10 minutes working your chest, you should also spend 10 minutes working you upper back. 10 minutes on biceps, then 10 minutes on triceps. You get the idea. Balancing your workouts so that you work all of the necessary muscle groups for positive general health is important. Likewise, you should balance between Cardiovascular and Muscle toning exercises. For most people, a successful workout plan produces a balanced, healthy person, not a body builder with bulging biceps. Stay balanced in your workout.

4. Enjoyment: There may be days when going to the gym is that last thing on planet earth that you want to do, but the majority of the time you should enjoy your time at the gym. Exercise releases positive chemicals into your body and leaves you feeling energized and alive. Exercise with a buddy, take your iPod, do lifts and workouts that are enjoyable and make you feel good. You will work out on a more consistent basis if you enjoy your work outs.

Those are some basic tips to get you started on your workout plan. Summer is a great time to develop those healthy workout habits. Happy Exercising!