Showing posts with label lifestyle. Show all posts
Showing posts with label lifestyle. Show all posts

Be real and strike a warm bond


Be real and strike a warm bond
Creating strong, warm relationships is not everybody's cup of tea. Pick up ways to to bond with people. 

Show interest in people: Everybody loves a little bit of attention. More so when it's personal. So, make a personal connection with people. Ask them about their loved ones as it gives people a sense of belongingness. Bring out a human element that creates instant bonding. However, make sure to not to get too personal. Maintain that healthy warm distance in personal aspects.

Talk about their interests/hobbies/passion: It's common wisdom that people love to talk about their interests, profession, passion. Find something, an idea or a hobby that others are interested or passionate about and just ask a question. It's always wise to make the person feel wanted by knowing his/her interests or passion. It's a sure shot way to create bonding.

Be a good listener: A good listener is always a winner. Allow people to express themselves. When people talk about the problems, listen and ask pertinent questions. You get to know people through their struggles and challenges. And if you do so with empathy, then you create bonds that will last a lifetime.

Be Real: When you're comfortable, you're real. Don't pretend. Masks eventually fall. People always appreciate genuine emotions. When you are who you are, you share a part of that with the other person, creating a stronger, warmer bond.


Top antioxidant rich foods!

Top antioxidant rich foods!
Antioxidants are highly essential today, considering the worldwide spread of different cancers and other life-threatening health conditions.


Be it a short trip to the supermarket, or a visit to the local vegetable market, here is a list of foods that are packed with antioxidants, and you should definitely be getting them home.

Tomatoes : Probably the most versatile fruit (yes fruit!); tomatoes are loaded with lycopene, which is an amazing antioxidant that you can put to use. Also, tomatoes give you that extra boost of vitamins A and C, which help keep the body functioning to its optimum level.
Best of all, the tomato ketchup that you use so liberally, also contains a huge amount of lycopene.

Corn : A favorite in the monsoons, corn is packed full of antioxidants lutein, zeaxanthin and vitamin C. Plus, it helps protect your eyes, so be sure to load up on these on your next trip to the supermarket.

Spinach : You may hate it for all the reasons, but the fact is, Popeye got the girl (and his muscles too) thanks to this one single greenie. Loaded with iron, and an amazing blood purifier, spinach is one of the best foods to add to your diet. It also contains the antioxidant lutein, and the essentials beta carotene and zeaxanthin which help protect your body against the various ill-effects of free radical damage.

Berries : Blueberries, strawberries and raspberries are not just meant to be in your ice creams, make it a point to eat these fruits raw, or as juices. Loaded with vitamin C, anthocyanins and quercetin, these berries can be added to your morning cereal, or whip up a handful of berries with a cup of yogurt, for freshly prepared fruit yogurt.

Bell peppers : They come in three colors and make your salads and pizzas colorful, but that’s just food for the eye. It may seem to be untrue, but bell peppers have more vitamin C than an orange; all the more reason to add them to your pizza toppings. Also, the threesome is known for their abundance in vitamins A, C and E.

Garlic : It adds flavor to your dishes, and keeps your heart healthy, but there’s much more to this teeny tiny herb than just this. Garlic helps lower blood pressure and cholesterol and acts as a natural antibiotic. Just a clove of garlic contains vitamins A, C, E and the essential minerals selenium, sodium, iodine, iron, zinc, calcium, magnesium and potassium.

Eat oats for better heart health, and beyond



Eat oats for better heart health, and beyond
Eat oats for better heart health, and beyond (Thinkstock Photos/Getty Images)
A key morning breakfast food has just got better. The soluble fibre in oats helps lower total and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or 'bad' cholesterol but scientists now say that the cardiovascular health benefits of oats goes beyond fibre.

The phenolic compound avenanthramide (AVE) - found only in oats - may possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-itch and anti-cancer properties.

It suggests that oat AVEs may play an important role in protecting the heart.

Eating whole grains is consistently associated with a reduced risk of chronic disease, including cardiovascular disease.

"Our studies reveal that the heart health benefit of eating oats may go beyond fibre," said Shengmin Sang from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University.

The soluble fibre beta-glucan found in oats has been recognised for its ability to lower both total and LDL cholesterol.

According to Mohsen Meydani from the Vascular Biology Laboratory at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Centre on Aging at Tufts University, oat AVEs suppress the production of inflammatory cytokines associated with fatty streak formation in the arteries.

In addition, oat AVEs appear to repress the process associated with the development of atherosclerosis.

Eleven top scientists from around the globe presented the latest findings on the powerful compounds found in oats in a scientific session titled 'Physicochemical Properties and Biological Functionality of Oats' at the 247th Annual Conference of the American Chemical Society in Dallas, Texas, recently.

The Health Benefits of Red Wine

The Health Benefits of Red WineCan wine really improve our health and increase longevity? Scientists are beginning to say "Yes!" Supposing that the theory is true -- which wines give us the most bang for the buck?
Researchers have found that red wines rich in flavonoids are best for our health. Flavonoids are best known for their antioxidant qualities and help the body resist such maladies as allergens, viruses and carcinogens.
Red wines also contain anxioxidants, which help the body resist cancer and cardiovascular disease. Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Syrah and Pinot Noir contain the highest concentrations of antioxidants and flavonoids.
Other red wines such as Merlots and red zinfandels contain fewer flavonoids, but more than most white wines. So, the best bet for drinking wine for our health is to stick to the dryer red wines.  Just because wine contains components that are central to good health doesn't give us a free rein to get plastered every night. Don't overdo it -- but adding a glass of wine to your daily diet can definitely make a difference to our health.
Paracelsus, the noted 16th-century Swiss physician wrote, "Wine is a food, a medicine and a poison - it's just a question of dose." As with almost any food or drink, wine consumed in large doses can be a detriment to our health.
Most health officials agree that one or two four-ounce glasses of wine per day can be beneficial to men, while women should limit their consumption to one four ounce serving per day.
Cardiovascular expert, Professor Roger Corder, has spent years studying the evidence of health benefits from red wine. In his new book, "The Wine Diet," he says he is convinced that most of us should include red wine in our every day lifestyle.
Corder discovered what he eventually labeled the "French Paradox." Specifically, he wondered why the French have a lower rate of heart disease despite the fact that their diet was extremely rich in fats. He concentrated his research on the southwest portion of France, where life expectancy seemed to be highest.
Professor Corder discovered that the region produces very tannic local wines, which contain the highest procyanidin (antioxidant) content of any wines, worldwide. This led him to further research on the amazing medical benefits of red wine.
While wine may not be man's ultimate elixir or fountain of youth, it certainly behooves us to consider adding a glass of wine or two to our daily diet - and raise a "toast" to our continued good health.           

Fifa World Cup 2014: Can sex hamper football?

Yes. At least, the Russia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Chile and Mexico football authorities think so! An article on Time points out that several football teams, in the World Cup season, has come up with strict 'sex rules'. From completely banning sex to specifying the duration for which they can indulge in sex, teams have come up with a gamut of solutions for success, some of them quite bizarre.
For example, the article notes, Brazilian footballers can have sex but not 'acrobatic' sex, French players can have sex but not all night and Nigerian players can sleep with their wives while girlfriends are a strict no-no!
The strict sex-related diktat put down by several football teams, has sparked the usual debate on the necessity to ban sex to ensure the player is not hindered on ground.
"In a sign of what the world's fittest sportsmen and women get up to in the Olympic village, a record 150,000 free condoms — 15 for each competitor — have been made available to them. The phenomenal outpouring of prophylactics means there will be 50 per cent more available to athletes in London than the 100,000 handed out at the last Olympics in Beijing in 2008," The Daily Mail reported.And it's not just restricted to football. The Daily Mailreported in 2012 that 150,000 condoms had been handed out the athletes, making sure that they are suitably prepared for any kind of emergency!
However, there have been conflicted opinions on whether or not sportsmen and women and athletes should have sex before a crucial performance.
Time notes, "Many coaches and athletes believe that abstaining from sex builds up aggression, a belief that probably stems from ancient civilizations like the Greeks, who thought that men derived strength from their semen. This theory is so pervasive that even Muhammed Ali refused to have sex six weeks before a fight, fearing that ejaculation would release the testosterone (and therefore aggression) he needed for a boxing match."
However, most other scientific studies have proved otherwise. An article on Plos observes, "Despite the extravagant stories exchanged between males in locker rooms, a normal session of business time between married partners results in the expenditure of only 25-50 calories, and it’s thus unlikely to influence next day energy stores."
Most of the arguments against sex, however, are based on the perception that sex has psychological repercussions which might reflect on an athlete's performance. But no scientific study has been found to attest the same.
Ian Shrier, a sports medicine specialist, has been quoted on the National Geographic News as saying that the 'long-standing myth that athletes should practice abstinence before important competitions may stem from the theory that sexual frustration leads to increased aggression'.
"After three months without sex, which is not so uncommon for some athletes, testosterone dramatically drops to levels close to children's levels," he said. "Do you think this may be useful for a boxer?" Emmanuele A Jannini of the University of L'Aquila in Italy is quoted as saying in National Geographic.
In fact, an article on Greatist.com, suggests that sex, the night before a big game, could actually be beneficial. It cites one study which says that testosterone boost from an orgasm might actually boost muscle strength and leg power for men. Whereas, for women, hormones released during an orgasm can actually 'stop the release of pain transmitters' for close to 24 hours. Which means it could help relax sore muscles and reduce muscle pain.
An article on CNN quotes Maria Cristina Rodríguez Gutierrez, director of sports medicine at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, as saying, "Sex only burns between 200 and 300 kilocalories, which doesn't compare to running a marathon or just a regular workout session. You can restore these calories by eating a chocolate bar or drinking a can of soda."
However, the Bosnia coach, who warned, 'there will be no sex in Brazil', is not listening! Bad luck, boys!

Top 10 Sex Myths Exposed

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You’d think everyone would have a better grasp on sex and desire, especially considering the important roles these two things play in our lives.

When you were younger, you probably believed a handful of humorous and strange things about sex — like the notion that you could lose your virginity if you inserted a tampon, or that masturbation causes blindness and hair to grow on your hands. Or that you can’t get pregnant while you’re breastfeeding your baby. Or (our favorite), that sex, as it’s portrayed on television and in the movies, actually imitates real life sex.  As you grow older, you realize that the majority of these kinds of sex myths aren’t true and you can’t be fooled nearly as easily.


Still there are a few women who’re still fairly misinformed about sex. Whether it’s how to get the most pleasure out of their love lives or how to stay healthy and safe in the bedroom, there seems to be a bit of hearsay being mistaken as fact.
Ready to test your sex IQ?

Myth #1: After a certain age, sex is no longer important. For adults of all ages, even those in their golden years, sex is actually an important aspect of both emotional and physical well-being. You’re never too old to enjoy pleasure. Some people believe that a decrease in sexual desire is simply a natural part of aging, but lacking libido is related to a number of other factors, including depression, communication barriers, hormone deficiencies, or loss of spouse or partner.
Myth #2: Your partner is intimidated by your vibrator. This is totally bogus. According to a recent Indiana University study, 41 percent of women have used a toy with their lover. ”Many men find vibration pleasurable on their penis and other body parts,” says Debby Herbenick, Ph.D., a research scientist at Indiana University and author of Because It Feels Good.
Selecting a new toy should be just as exciting as using it. Need some tips? Lea Caughlan from The Rubber Rose, a sexuality boutique in San Diego, California, can give you some insight aboutchoosing the sexiest and safest bedroom playthings.
Myth #3: Watching porn is a “guy” thing. Despite the widely held belief, a lot of women really like porn. It’s true. We women are way more sexually curious than we get credit for. According to Nielsen NetRatings, a third of all visitors to adult sites are female. And they are often into some really kinky things. A study done by Northwestern University says that guys mostly get turned on by porn that’s the same as their own sexual orientation, while girls tend to like all kinds of porn, including gay, lesbian, heterosexual and bisexual.
Myth #4: You can’t get pregnant when you’re on your period. This couldn’t be further from the truth. ”You can get pregnant at any stage of your menstrual cycle—even on the day you expect your period to start,” says Sherman Silber, M.D., director of the Infertility Center in St. Louis. Since sperm is capable of living inside the body for up to a week, if you were to have sex during your period and then ovulate shortly after, it’s highly likely you could still get preggers.
Myth #5: Size matters. Just because a guy doesn’t have a big penis doesn’t mean you’re going to miss out on mind blowing sex. Size isn’t everything. Even if your man isn’t packing the heat the rest of your girlfriends are raving about, he’ll most likely still be able to rock your world. For example, being big in size won’t help him reach your (very real) G-spot. Actually, it could be quite painful if your cervix is continually hit during sex. Woman-on-top positions are great if you want to control the depth of his stroke. Try reverse cowgirl.
If he is lacking in length, try to stick to positions that keep your bodies close together. For a little extra clitoral stimulation, wrap your legs around him.
Myth #6: Once you have a baby, your sex life is over. This could be both true and false. Although having a vaginal birth will change you down there, having sex is so much more than purely physical stimulation. If you’re lacking intimacy, there’s obviously going to be issues, but just because you have a baby doesn’t mean your sex life is doomed. Many experts agree that doing Kegel exercises to strengthen your vagina works wonders.
Myth #7: Chocolate makes you horny. Chocolate is not only delicious, but it also contains two chemicals that trigger feelings of sexual arousal and love:  (a building block of a brain hormone that puts you in the mood) and phenylethylamine (a natural neuromodulator that stimulates positive feelings, often similar to the feeling of falling in love). But don’t let that fool you. Although chocolate has been known to be an aphrodisiac, like oysters, its qualities are purely psychological.
Myth #8: Testosterone only influences a man’s sex drive. While testosterone is commonly associated with men and their sex drives, like estrogen, it actually affects both sexes. Testosterone levels tend to be highest in women each month during ovulation. It has been shown to increase interest in masturbation but not sex with a partner. There’s a time and place for everything.
Myth #9: Condoms make sex less enjoyable. As long as you’re aroused and excited, sex with a condom is as pleasurable as it is without.
Myth #10: Guys want women with hot bodies. Women want men with money and status. A Northwestern University study found that women choose men with higher status when considering an ideal partner, but changed their tunes when evaluating an actual person.

Multivitamins – Weighing the Pros and Cons

Multivitamins – Weighing the Pros and Cons
Are multivitamins really worth your time (and money)? Read on to find out…

A quick look at the medicine section of your local supermarket will tell you how popular multivitamin and mineral supplements have become in the past few years. In an attempt to compensate for the lack of healthy food, and sometimes, blinded by the celebrity diet fads, many people have now started taking multivitamin supplements on a daily basis.

The Pros

Multivitamin supplements were actually designed for individuals with special needs, such as kids suffering from malnutrition, pregnant women, lactating mothers, elderly individuals and individuals suffering from certain health conditions. However, you could still benefit by taking these supplements.

Multivitamin supplements could replenish your body’s reserves of the vitamins, minerals and micronutrients you are lacking. They therefore also cut down the risk of anemia, scurvy and other deficiency disorders.

Rich in vitamins A, C and E, these supplements slow down ageing and cut down your risk of suffering from conditions such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease and boost your immunity.

Taking multivitamin supplements occasionally could also help you deal with some particular region or condition-oriented problems. Pregnant women can get that extra folic acid to ensure a healthy baby and you could get your dose of vitamin D if you don’t really go outdoors.

The Cons

While multivitamins themselves do a pretty good job of keeping the body healthy, fit and active; every day consumption of these supplements could actually be harmful for the body and may have negative impacts on your health too.

Probably the worst fact about multivitamin supplements is that they pack in mega doses of all vitamins and micronutrients. An overdose of anything, even vitamins, is seriously bad for health, and when taken daily, multivitamin supplements have a good way of doing more bad than good for your health.

If you have just started taking multivitamin supplements, there’s a good chance it could interfere with the drugs and medications you have already been taking. It is important to consult a professional at this stage.

Many multivitamin supplements found today are not backed by good research, and don’t contain ideal proportions of vitamins. A good percentage of multivitamin supplements found on supermarket shelves today are not FDA-approved, and are not entirely pure.

On an end-note, its best to take multivitamin supplements, but occasionally; taking advice from your doctor could help you better understand about how multivitamin supplements could help you.

Chocolate – Your guilt free treat

Chocolate – Your guilt free treat

Chocoholics now have a reason to rejoice. Studies show that chocolate can actually do wonders for your health! So go ahead and indulge.

If you have a sweet tooth and love chocolates, but the calories stop you from indulging yourself, here are a few reasons why you don’t have to feel guilty.

Reasons to have more chocolates

Nutritional punch: Both milk and dark chocolate give your body enough calcium and vitamin E to prevent any deficiency disorder. Consuming around two ounces of dark chocolate a day may actually help you live longer, and stay miles away from heart diseases, and even cancer!

Get smarter: Loaded with flavonoids that increase blood flow to the cerebral portion of the brain, chocolate can actually help you get smarter. It increases the production of blood and brain cells, boosting cognitive function (process in which one becomes aware of ideas). And that’s not just the dark chocolate - it’s also the regular milk chocolate that makes for good grades.

Flash the pearly whites: Theobromine - a compound found in chocolates is now thought to be as efficient as fluoride in hardening the tooth enamel, making you less susceptible to tooth decay and cavities. This, however, doesn’t mean you can trade your toothbrush for a chocolate bar.

Heart happy: You are probably already aware that dark chocolate helps fight away heart problems, specifically stroke. A study showed that weekly consumption of dark chocolate reduced the chances of stroke to a good 37%. Dark chocolate is also wonderfully efficient at reducing LDL (low density lipoproteins) - the bad cholesterol. Also, it manages to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes by 31%. Packed with vitamin E, dark chocolate keeps away the metabolic disorders, heart disease and diabetes. Now isn’t that impressive!

Soul soother: What made you obsessed with chocolate is the feel-good-feeling that you get right after you eat it. It stimulates the neural activity in the brain that gives that feeling of pleasure and satisfaction, helping ward away depression and stress.

Eye care: Consuming white/dark chocolate has demonstrated an improvement in vision among 300 people in the US. These impressive numbers came from the fact that the flavonols (a class of flavonoids) increase the blood flow to not only the brain, but also the retina.

Beauty SOS: Cocoa butter has made its way into many of your cosmetic products now, and it’s not without a reason. Cocoa rejuvenates the skin and accelerates production of new skin cells, thus effectively fighting skin ageing. Cocoa also has a high concentration of flavonols-a plant compound that improves blood circulation making the skin visibly smooth, and antioxidants that protect the skin from sun damage.

Lastly, chocolate effectively fights inflammation and free radical damage, giving you the glow you’ve always coveted.

Benefits of Hugging


Benefits of hugging
Benefits of hugging (Thinkstock photos/Getty Images)
Hugging therapy is said to be a powerful way of healing. 

Research shows that hugging is extremely effective at healing sickness, disease, loneliness, depression, anxiety and stress. Here are listed some of the positive effects of hugging:

1. The nurturing touch of a hug builds trust and a sense of safety. This helps with open and honest communication.

2. Hugs can instantly boost oxytocin levels, which heal feelings of loneliness, isolation, and anger. Holding a hug for an extended time lifts one's serotonin levels, elevating mood leading to happiness.

3. Hugging boosts self-esteem. Everybody wants to be loved and treated special. The associations of self-worth from our early years are still embedded in our nervous system as adults. The hugs and cuddle we received from our near and dear ones while growing up remain imprinted at a cellular level. Hugs, therefore, connect us to our ability to self love.

4. Hugging relaxes muscles. Hugs release tension in the body. Hugs can take away pain; they soothe aches by increasing circulation into the soft tissues.

5. Hugs balance out the nervous system.

6. Hugs teach us how to give and receive. There is equal value in receiving and being receptive to warmth, as to giving and sharing. Hugs educate us how love flows both ways.

7. Hugs are like meditation and laughter. They teach us to let go and be present in the moment. They encourage us to flow with the energy of life. Hugs get you out of your circular thinking patterns and connect you with your heart and your feelings and your breath.

8. The energy exchange between the people hugging is an investment in the relationship. It encourages empathy and understanding.

The scrapped ‘Do What U Want’ music video Lady Gaga didn’t want you to see

‘LADY GAGA BARES IT ALL’. Yes, yes she does.IT’S the music video Lady Gaga didn’t want the world to see — but now we’ve got a glimpse of the shocker that one source has called “an ad for rape”.
When Gaga released Do What U Want , the second single from her ill-fated ARTPOP album last October, she hyped up the release of an accompanying controversial video.
The video is directed by infamous photographer Terry Richardson, whose sexually explicit works cause controversy on their own, but who has also faced allegations in recent years of coercing his models into performing sexual acts.
Also featured in the video is R&B singer R. Kelly, himself no stranger to sex scandals after a 2002 video surfaced that appeared to show him engaging in sex with, and urinating on, an underage girl.
Despite the hype, the video never materialized when the single was released, and Gaga broke her silence in a January blog post to say that the delay had been “devastating” and her creative process had been rushed.

Now, TMZ have obtained a 30-second snippet of the video, and it’s not hard to see why Team Gaga decided against its release. Gaga's leaked video http://www.tmz.com/2014/06/19/lady-gaga-music-video-sexual-assault-do-what-u-want/
Lady Gaga writhes around naked in her scrapped ‘Do What U Want’ video.The clip opens with Gaga on an operating table, R. Kelly administering an unnamed “medicine” that renders her unconscious. Gaga’s lifeless, naked body is then propped up on the operating table by dancers who grind and twerk all over her.
In the next scene, Gaga — again naked, but for some scraps of newspaper — poses as Richardson shoots her against a wall plastered with her most inflammatory headlines.
Lady Gaga — ‘I’ve been betrayed and mismanaged’
Gaga touring Aus — but can it save ARTPOP?
The New York Post quotes an unnamed source who’s seen the full video: “Gaga had a video directed by an alleged sexual predator, starring another sexual predator. With the theme, ‘I’m going to do whatever I want with your body’? It was literally an ad for rape.”
While it’s hard to be shocked by Gaga’s antics nowadays, the initial furore over the song reignited with the video leak today, as fans questioned the appropriateness of teaming a track in which Gaga implores the listener to “Do what you want with my body” with a video starring two alleged sexual offenders.

Thinking Of A Happy Place Might Help Reduce Pain

Visualizing a safe place could help lessen pain during a medical procedure, a new study suggests.

Researchers examined the efficacy of visualization techniques during ablation of atrial fibrillation, a procedure that involves inserting a catheter with an electrode at the end of it into the body to destroy parts of the heart responsible for atrial fibrillation.
They examined 76 patients who used visualization techniques and 71 patients who received conventional care. The procedure took two to four hours, and all participants in the study also received local anesthesia, as well as painkillers that were administered by a nurse when they pushed a button. The participants were asked about their pain and anxiety every 15 minutes.
The patients who were in the visualization group were asked to "describe a comfortable safe place they want to be during the procedure. People have chosen a summer house, the beach, or the woods," study researcher Marianne Wetendorff Nørgaard, a clinical nurse specialist at Copenhagen University Hospital, Rigshospitalet, said in a statement. "During the procedure the nurse asks the patient to focus on their safe place and how it looks, smells and sounds."
And when a patient felt pain during the procedure, the nurse helped the patient to use visualization to provide an alternative reason for the pain.
"For example, if the patient says 'my chest is burning', the nurse may say 'imagine that it's a cold day and there is ice on your chest,'" Nørgaard explained in the statement. "Patients tell us that being in this trance like state with safe images makes the procedure a pleasant experience and it feels shorter."
Researchers found that the patients who were in the visualization group reported being in pain fewer times and requested fewer painkillers with the push button. However, researchers did not find that pain intensity or anxiety differed between those who employed visualization techniques and those who didn't.
The findings were presented at EuroHeartCare 2014; because they have yet to be published in a peer-reviewed journal, they should be considered preliminary. 

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