COMFORT IS BEAUTY

How to Take Care of Your Lips during Winter

closeup of a cute young woman lips

Luscious, supple lips are something most women desire.  But when it’s bitterly cold outside and overly dry inside, how is a gal supposed to maintain beautiful lips?  It takes a bit of extra effort in the winter, but hydrated, smooth lips are attainable even in the coldest winter months.  Today we’re sharing how to take care of your lips during winter to keep them sweet, sassy and smoochable!

Lips get cracked and chapped during the winter – or any time of year for that matter – for several reasons.  As the weather becomes colder, moisture gets sucked out of the air and the wind can be abrasive to the very thin, sensitive skin on your lips.  Most people have the heat on indoors during the winter, which creates dry air inside as well.  You just can’t escape it!  Additionally, many people use chemical-based lip balm or lick their lips to combat dryness, which both contribute to dehydration.  And if all of this isn’t bad enough, the natural aging process can cause lips to crack and chap as well.

Protect your lips in the winter and year-round with these tips:

  • Keep lips moisturized at all times, even at night, with a natural lip balm.  Beeswax, coconut oil, shea butter, petroleum jelly, aloe vera and jojoba oil are all great natural ingredients for your lips.
  • Drink plenty of water.  Moisturization occurs from the inside out just as much as the other way around.  Drink your 8 glasses a day for plumper lips.
  • Don’t lick your lips.  While you think you may be helping them, it actually dries them out much more than you think.
  • Wear SPF sunscreen on your lips.  Even the winter sun can cause damage to your lips.
  • Stop smoking.  Nicotine, combined with the heat source touching your lips, is a terrible combination.  Besides, smoking is bad for your entire body in every way.
  • Stay out of the sun and wind whenever possible.  Your lips and all of your skin will thank you.
  • Use a humidifier in your home to add moisture back into the air.

Also, try these natural remedies for combating dry lips:

  • Press your lips against a used green tea bag for 5 minutes a day.  The extreme antioxidants will seep into your thin lip skin and hydrate them.
  • Rub honey, butter or any type of natural oil over your lips.  Let it sit for 10 minutes before rinsing.
  • Create an exfoliant with raw sugar and olive oil.  Scrub lips for 2-3 minutes and then wash off the solution.  This will help rid your lips of dry, dead skin and allow newer, fresher skin cells to rise to the surface.
  • Use natural age-defying foods like lemons and cucumbers on your lips too.  Crush them and use the juice as a lip solvent for about 15 minutes a day for best results.

Silky, lush, kissable lips are attainable even in the winter with these tips for how to care for your lips!

 

Knowing Your Family History

Family history may seem like a string of distant stories that has no relevance on your life now.  But the truth is, knowing your family history can be a very important and connective piece of your family’s health and dynamics.  Taking the time to research your family history may be a fascinating journey back in time, as well as a critical measure to understanding aspects of the present and future.

When you were a kid, you may have heard many tales of your family’s past from various generations.  While these stories may have seemed so far away – from both a sense of time and place – they can shed much light onto the choices, behaviors, values and health ingrained into your family.  As you’ve grown older, you may notice how one generation influences the next.  But what about the generations you haven’t met and witnessed?  They have had a profound impact on the subsequent generations of your family too.

Family history helps create unity and understanding within families.  Knowing the struggles, challenges, sacrifices, passions, triumphs and amazing feats of the past can help you better understand older generations in your family.  The influences of past situations – good and bad – stick with each of us in ways that form our psyche, traditions, values and Family treelifestyle choices.  Studying the stories of your family such as where generations past grew up, the political and cultural pressures of their times, their professions, family life and much more can help connect families, bridge gaps and secure strong familial bonds.

Knowing your family history is also valuable for health purposes.  Scientific research continues to show genetic factors involved in countless health conditions.  While you cannot change your genes, you can be aware of increased risk factors based on patterns in your family’s medical history.  Having this information can help determine a course of action and the level of vigilance needed for preventative care.  For instance, it may be recommended that families with increased risk of certain types of cancer should have more frequent health screenings to catch potential issues early.

Whether you are a history buff or not, mapping a family tree and digging into medical records can be an eye-opening experience.  Start with any records you have and reach out to relatives who can help you begin to piece together your family’s history.  The act of reconnecting with relatives alone may be extremely rewarding.  Although it’s a rather new invention, the Internet can be a magnificent tool in tracking genealogy too.  Once you know relative’s names and a few things about them, you can search for more info.  Genealogy programs are also available on a subscription basis to help fill in the gaps.

Be sure to check causes of death and read through any existing medical records.  Often, putting together medical history can be the most challenging part of knowing your family history because you have to put the puzzle together yourself.  But it is well worth the effort if it can help inform your family’s health and recommended preventative care.

Use family history as a bridge from the past to the future.  Connect with generations past – living or deceased – by getting to know their stories and their medical history.  You’ll be amazed at how this small step back in time can broaden your horizons in many giant ways.

Winter Superfoods

Verdure e frutta invernale mista,We’re back with our seasonal edition of superfoods and today we’re focusing on winter superfoods!  We’ve got the best fruits and vegetables to nourish your wintertime meals and help stave off seasonal illnesses, ailments and even emotional lows.  Add these winter superfoods to your diet for a super-charged season:

Winter Squash:  Move over fall pumpkins, winter squash is taking the spotlight this season.  Filled with the same nutritious beta-carotene as pumpkins, winter squash include butternut squash, spaghetti squash and acorn squash, among others.  Each variety has its own merits and specialties.  Spaghetti squash yields long thin strands and makes a great alternative to pasta.  Other squashes can replace regular squash or zucchini during winter or can be whipped into faux mash potatoes for a lighter, lower-carb version of a winter classic.

Fennel:  Hailing from the Mediterranean, fennel is bursting with vitamins and minerals including potassium, folate, calcium, magnesium, Vitamin A and many others.  It has cardio-protective properties, strengthens the immune system, intensifies bony capacity and combats inflammation.  The distinctive fennel bulb has a licorice-like flavor that adds robust intrigue to many cuisines.

Beetroot:  This beautiful deep red root vegetable has a high concentration of antioxidants that help counteract free radicals that damage bodily cells.  Beets can be served cold, often as salad toppers, baked or as a soup puree.  Even the leafy top is nutritious and can be cooked with the flesh of the vegetable for added value.

Jicama:  Most commonly found in Central America and Asia, jicama is a crunchy vegetable with a slightly nutty, refreshing flavor.  It is often chunked or shredded and tossed into salads for a little phyto-crunch, but it can also be eaten raw in strips.  Jam-packed with Vitamin C for immune strength as well as iron, potassium and fiber, jicama is a great low-calorie snack option.

Avocado:  In the U.S., avocado is eaten all year long but it is truly in season in the wintertime.  It is a terrific plant source of omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids, plus other healthy monounsaturated fats. Avocado also contains folate and the B vitamins, all of which are good for disease-prevention and have heart-healthy benefits.

Pears:  Sweet and scrumptious, pears are a wonderful winter superfood.  Although the saying goes, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” in wintertime we can include pears as well.  They contain Vitamin B2, Vitamin E, pectin and copper, which help lower bad cholesterol levels and support the cardiovascular system.  Plus, pears come in a variety of colors, shapes and sizes to add to your winter kitchen décor.

Pomegranates:  Pomegranates are rich in polyphenols and flavonoids, two super-charged antioxidant categories that help stave off cancer and other diseases caused by cellular mutations.  This festively bright red fruit is somewhat difficult to gut but once you do the work, the sweet and tart pomegranate beads are your treat.  Add them to salads, cereals or pop them individually as a snack.

Kiwi:  Little fuzzy kiwis are a small fruit with a large amount of nutrients.  One kiwi contains more Vitamin C than an orange plus it has great fiber and potassium that yield heart-health benefits.  Kiwis are good for digestion, smooth skin and even help you sleep better.

Tangelo:  This mix between a tangerine and a pomelo has enough Vitamin C to meet your daily recommended value.  Vitamin C is, of course, known to boost immune strength and has terrific disease-fighting capacity.  Tangelos are a fabulous twist on more common citrus fruits that are ripe during winter.  And tangelos are easy to carry for an on-the-go wintertime pick-me-up.

What are you waiting for?  Enjoy these winter superfoods today!

Get Inspired by the “Healthy at Any Size” Campaign

If you’re still not sure how you’re going to spend your winter vacation, here’s an idea:  start loving your body and getting healthy at the same time.  The official “Healthy at Any Size” campaign may be over, but the premise is one that we can all strive to achieve.

Plus size model Melinda Parrish didn’t enter the modeling world looking nearly as confident as she does in her photo shoots.  In fact, she, like many other women, struggled all her life to accept her body.  That’s why she started the “Healthy at Any Size” (#HealthyatAnySize) campaign and the Get Moving (#getmoving15) holiday challenge with Plus Model Magazine.

healthy at any size__1450660327_108.89.138.209In our modern society, exercise has been eternally linked to weight loss and continues to lose its true, original intention…health.  It seems physical activity gets lost in a world obsessed with being thin.  As the Health at Every Size (HAES) movement cites, this body preoccupation leads to abuse of food, eating and body disorders, negative body image and self-hatred, discrimination and worst of all, unhealthy lifestyles.  Melinda Parrish and many others are taking a stand to change the purpose behind exercise and redefine “movement” to stand for health, not weight obsession.

The goal of Melinda’s campaign as well as the HAES movement is to recognize the physical, mental and emotional benefits of being active for health and wellness purposes.  When women understand that fitness stretches way beyond weight loss, they have a better chance of reaping the amazing benefits of exercise that extend beyond physical wellbeing.  Physical activity is linked to so many mental and emotional advantages including releasing brain chemicals and neurotransmitters that actually make you feel better.  And when we feel better, we have better perspective on ourselves and can love our bodies for what they are, not how we long for them to be.

While there are health risks associated with obesity, the healthcare industry is actually NOT obsessed with weight.  The medical field acknowledges that bodies can be healthy at many sizes but physical activity is a key component to achieving and maintaining health.  Unfortunately, many people are turned off by the idea of exercise because they feel weight loss is unattainable.  Campaigns like “Healthy at Any Size” strive to dispel these associations with weight loss and motivate movement for the sake of health and health alone.

Of course mental and emotional health are an important piece of the puzzle for Melinda Parrish and many others too.  Accepting your body in a weight-obsessed world often takes strength and courage.  As Melinda squashes the weight loss connection to exercise, she hopes to replace it with a message of self-love, body positivity and recognition that bodies can be healthy and strong at any size.

So this holiday season, get inspired to be Healthy at Any Size.  It doesn’t mean you have to run a marathon, but do find some ways to move your body for a healthier new you in the New Year.

How to Truly Unwind on Vacation

Relax sul pratoSo you’re headed off on a much needed vacation – go you!  Surely you’re excited but maybe a bit stressed too, as you’re trying to wrap things up at home and prepare for your trip.  Today we’re bringing you tips on how to truly unwind on vacation.

Tie up lose ends before you leave.  If you feel confident that things are taken care of on the home front, you’ll be able to relax more on vacation.  This may mean putting in a few extra hours to get things done in the office or at least creating a memo for co-workers to know exactly where things stand so they can fill your shoes in your absence.  Do the same for anything you have going on for social, volunteer or familial projects.  Don’t let the stressful details of things you’ve forgotten to do or tell someone weigh on your mind when you’re trying to enjoy your trip.

Designate a brief time to check-in every day.  For those who are extremely dedicated to their work, severing communication for 2 weeks may not be an option.  And certainly you will want to communicate with your children if they’re staying home while you are on an adult vacation.  Set aside time when you can be reached by your boss or caregiver every day.  Obviously anyone should contact you in the event of a huge emergency, but otherwise, let them know that you will be checking emails, voicemails or calling-in at a certain time.  This will put everyone at ease, including you.  But do be mindful of your own boundaries and don’t make yourself more available than necessary.  This will eat into your down time on vacation.

Wind down slowly.  It’s hard to go from 100 mph to a complete halt.  Instead, give yourself time to wind down from a stressful period and ease into vacation mode.  If you have a few days to spend at home before your trip, that may help.  Otherwise, keep you mind occupied without focusing on your daily tasks, such as doing a puzzle, Sudoku or reading a stimulating or motivating book.  As your vacation progresses, switch gears to more relaxing activities like watching movies, reading a juicy novel or flipping through magazines.

Plan challenges and adventures on vacation.  If you are a goal-oriented person, lying on the beach for days-upon-days may not be fulfilling.  Rather, select several challenging activities during your vacation.  Perhaps it’s climbing a nearby mountain, taking a cooking class or trying to pick up on the local language.  After all, vacation you should be more relaxed, but you’re not an entirely different person.  Don’t deny your natural instincts for adventure and challenge.  Instead embrace them and let them add fun and excitement to your vacation.

Use relaxation techniques.  If you find yourself stressed on vacation, seek relaxation techniques early so you don’t waste your entire trip.  Employ meditation and deep breathing to try to loosen up.  You can also get a massage or spend an entire day soothing yourself at a spa.  Do what it takes to really unwind so you feel rejuvenated and refreshed rather than regretting the fact that you couldn’t chill on your vacation.

Wind up slowly too.  When it is time to reenter your “real world,” do so slowly and with caution.  Don’t destroy all the relaxation you enjoyed by abruptly returning to stressful situations.  Try to have a day at home to unpack, do your laundry, do some prep work for your job and think about the challenges ahead.  Hopefully everything will seem easier to handle after your vacation.  Try to remember the fun you had and go into your new week with a cheery, positive, relaxed attitude like you had on vacation.

We hope you can use these tips to truly unwind on vacation.  Enjoy!!

Natural Remedies for Anxiety

Anxiety comes in many forms and strikes at different times for different people.  General worrying is what we most commonly call anxiety, but more severe conditions such as obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and social anxiety disorder are all forms of anxiety as well.  Certain times of year, say around the holidays when we’re out of our routines and spending lots of time with family, may cause elevated anxiety.  In extreme cases, medication may be required.  But we can often curb everyday worrying with natural remedies for anxiety.  Today we have a few suggestions that may take your mind off the worry and get you back to your usual self.

Herbal Natural Remedies for Anxiety

There are many herbal options that have a calming effect on the body.  Most are healthy and safe, although do discuss with your physician before starting a new herbal regimen if you take prescriptions medications as there may be some interactions.  Herbal remedies include lavender, GABA (gamma-aminobutyic acid), chamomile, green tea, passionflower, lemon balm, valerian and hops.  Many of these contain essential nutrients and volatile oils that trigger neurotransmitter reactions that reduce stress and anxiety.  By drinking these herbal teas, taking an herbal supplement or even smelling or absorbing them topically through oils, your body may immediately begin to loosen up.

Seek Relaxation

Relaxation is different to everyone, but for those who experience anxiety, it is a great natural remedy to relieve symptoms.  Scheduling relaxation before anxiety strikes can be very helpful, and of course making time for it when you’re already feeling anxiety is a no-brainer.  Relaxation may come from meditation, spending time in nature, watching television, reading a book, deep breathing techniques, practicing yoga, exercise, gardening or getting a massage.  Employ whatever ways you find therapeutic relaxation to your advantage to help address anxiety.

Get Warm

Portrait of a pretty happy young woman holding a cup of coffeeWarmth is believed to trigger the feel-good neurotransmitter serotonin.  Soaking in a bath, spending time in a steam room, drinking a hot cup of tea, enjoying sunshine, and curling up by a fire are all great ways to heat your body and release this wonderful, natural sensation.  This may also be why exercise gives you a “high” despite any pain it may cause.  Next time you feel angst, try doing or sipping something warm for a quick fix.

Eat a Healthy Diet

When your body needs nutrients, many things can go awry, including elevating your anxiety levels.  Keep your blood sugar levels stable throughout the day by eating a balance of protein, complex carbohydrates, vegetables and fruits.  Omega-3s are a terrific anxiety-relieving nutrient found in many fish, nuts and oils.  Also, don’t skip breakfast.  Studies show that anxiety-prone people are more likely to skip breakfast.  Stop the anxiety before it starts by eating healthily and not missing a meal.

Isolate Issues and Face Fears

Sometimes getting to the root cause of anxiety can help reduce future anxiety, even if it requires some uncomfortable soul searching in the moment.  When you are faced with anxiety, try to determine what it is that is really bothering you.  Sometimes we make up reasons for anxiety that aren’t truly the root cause.  Dig deep to decide why you are worrying and what myths you may be telling yourself that leads you there.  Try not to let other issues build on top of the underlying cause of your anxiety.  Creating a catastrophe  only makes anxiety worse.  Once you know what the issue is, work on facing that fear so it doesn’t continue to agitate you and cause long term anxiety.

 

Spices of the Holiday Season

Cinnamon sticks, star anise and nuts on an old wooden table. New year and Christmas compositions. Selective focus

‘Tis the season to spice things up!  Spices are an important part of holiday cooking and fragrances that capture the essence of the holidays.  Here’s an added bonus:  spices also add nutrients and health benefits to your food.  As you are doing your cooking this season, you can feel good about adding holiday spices to your dishes and beverages.  Today we’re sharing some of the awesome spices of the holiday season and their incredible health benefits:

Sweet Spices of the Holiday Season

Cinnamon:  Ah, what sounds better than a stick of cinnamon in your hot cocoa or tea this holiday season?  Cinnamon can be found in many holiday dishes from baked goods to sweet potato soufflé.  It has antibacterial properties and helps stabilize blood sugar levels, plus it curbs indigestion and nausea.

Nutmeg:  Although less popular than its sister cinnamon, nutmeg is another sweet spice found in many holiday desserts.  It can also be used as a topping for beverages like egg nog or warm milk.  Nutmeg offers digestive relief and is an antifungal and antibacterial agent.  So while you are indulging this season, nutmeg is helping treat infections.

Ginger:  Ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory, which supports the body in a variety of ways.  It is best known as a digestive aid to curb an upset stomach and nausea.  But it also calms swelling and irritation throughout the body, including joints and internal organs.  This fun root is a distinctive flavor of healthful holidays.

Peppermint:  The base ingredient of peppermint, mint, is a super healthy herb.  It can soothe the stomach and reduce gas and bloating after holiday meals and it has a ton of antioxidants.  Additionally, mint calms the body and helps relieve headaches and seasonal cold symptoms.  While too many candy canes pack on lots of extra calories, a few minty indulgences are actually good for you.

Cloves:  The distinguishing scent of cloves screams holiday time.  These small, spiky buds are great antimicrobials and anti-inflammatories with a range of health benefits.  They support the immune system, help manage symptoms of diabetes and can curb oral health conditions.

Savory Spices of the Holiday Season

Sage:  This ancient spice is another great way to improve digestion.  Sage contains anti-inflammatory and healing properties that are great for the heart, brain and immune system as well.  Typically used for savory dishes like meats and stews, sage is a fabulous choice for your holiday spice rack.

Rosemary:  Rosemary is a staple spice for holiday roast chickens, turkeys and hams, as well as soups, vegetable dishes and potatoes.  This Mediterranean evergreen improves cognition, circulation and immune health, and it helps detoxify and heal the body.  Rosemary is also believed to reduce stress, which may be a much-needed bonus benefit over the holidays.

Enjoy these delicious and healthful spices of the holiday season!  We wish you a very Happy Holidays!

8 Ideas to Share the Holiday Spirit

Happy christmas couple over blue winter background.

We hope you are already enjoying your holiday season.  If you or others around you are not yet in the holiday spirit, we’re here to help whip you into holiday shape.

The holidays aren’t just about presents and delicious foods.  They are about togetherness, cheer and warm wishes.  No matter what our circumstances may be, we can all participate in celebrating our holidays, families, year end and the many wonderful things in our lives.  That is truly the essence of the holiday spirit.  And while you’re feeling full of cheer, we hope you’ll make it your mission to share the holiday spirit this year.  We have 8 ideas to help you do it:

Holiday Scents:  For days leading up to the holidays, fill your home with fragrant holiday scents like ginger, peppermint, cinnamon and vanilla.  You can do this through scented candles, air fresheners or starting your holiday baking early.  The magnificent smells of the holiday season will put everyone in a festive mood.

Decorate your Home:  It’s hard to resist the holiday spirit when your home is decked out in holiday gear.  Decorating can be especially fun for kids, but even if you don’t have any, put up decorations so your visual surroundings will stimulate holiday happiness.

Twinkle your Neighbors:  Similar to “booing” on Halloween or “egging” on Easter, twinkling over the winter holiday season means you leave an anonymous surprise at someone’s door or in their yard.  It may be several small items or one basket of goodies.  It will warm your neighbors to know you are thinking of them during the holidays.

Shop in a Good Mood:  For some, holiday shopping is such a chore.  Do your best not to be a grump or a scrooge when you do your holiday shopping.  Pick a day when you’re in a good mood – perhaps take a vacation day so you’re not distracted by work – and indulge in a great cup of coffee or breakfast treat to get your day started.  Keep a smile on your face as you do your shopping, even if you have to stand in long lines.  It will be contagious.

Invite People into your Kitchen:  Often we greet our guest, grab them a drink and retreat into the kitchen to finish last minute details while the rest of your family entertains.  They are all enjoying themselves and you’re slaving away in the kitchen, or so it seems.  This year, don’t banish people from helping in your kitchen.  Rather, let the kitchen be the gathering spot.  Allow your guests to pull up an apron and stir, garnish or taste something as you finish the festive meal preparations.

Break the Ice:  Whether you celebrate with close family or invite extended relatives, friends and neighbors, help everyone have more meaningful conversations with an ice breaker.  Yeh, sounds a little cheesy but it can be fun and productive.  An example:  ask everyone to bring one item that represents how they are feeling this holiday season or about the year that is almost over.  Give everyone a moment to talk about their item.  We guarantee it will spark deeper conversation and a sense of unity throughout the holiday.

Start One New Holiday Tradition:  Traditions are a special way to get your family in the holiday spirit year after year.  If you feel your holiday is lackluster this year, start a new family tradition.  For instance, maybe one gift to and from each family member must be homemade.  Or give a gag gift to lighten up your holiday scene.

Watch your Favorite Holiday Movies:  There’s nothing that can turn a holiday frown upside down like a holiday movie.  Keep a few of them playing on background during the holiday season.  You’ll surely soak up the holiday spirit in no time.

Happy Holidays!  We wish you much holiday spirit this season!

Why You Should Take Power Naps

Sleep is vital to our lives to rest our bodies and achieve rejuvenation.  But sleep deprivation is becoming more and more common in our modern 24/7 lifestyles.  Most mammals have multiple periods of sleep and wakefulness during their days, but humans are an exception.  We typically sleep at night and are awake during the day, for better or for worse.  Many experts believe that power naps are a significant way to curb fatigue, boost energy and improve alertness.  We’re exploring the benefits of power naps here.

Power naps are typically defined as 10-30 minutes of sleep in the early afternoon.  If you try to take a nap before 1 p.m., your body will probably not be tired enough for sleep.  If you sleep past 4 p.m., it may interrupt your nighttime sleep.  Therefore, a power nap Peaceful portrait of woman sleeping on pillowbetween 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. is best.  Studies indicate that even this short burst of sleep can greatly improve alertness and performance.  Power naps can help you most directly after the nap period and may prolong concentration for several hours later than usual.  Additionally, napping has proved to be excellent for the cardiovascular system, to reduce stress and aid in weight loss.

Sleep expert Sara C. Mednick, PhD wrote a book entitled Take a Nap! Change your Life in which she outlines the benefits of different lengths of sleep.  The 20-minute power nap, known as stage 2 sleep, is great for alertness and increased motor skills.  Naps ranging from 30 to 60 minutes offers slow-wave sleep that improves memory and helps with decision-making skills.  Even longer naps of up to 90 minutes allows R.E.M. (rapid eye movement) sleep that is associated with creative problem solving and greater brain connections.

For those who are truly sleep deprived, longer daytime naps may be in order to “catch up” on sleep.  However, shorter power naps of less than 40 minutes are refreshing without leaving the body feeling groggy from being ripped out of sleep.  Plus, most adults in the U.S. don’t have the luxury of napping for longer than 30 minutes per day.  Other cultures put a greater value on naps and schedule time for them during their workdays.  Some businesses like Google and Huffington Post offer sleep pods in their offices to help their employees catch some zzz’s during their day.  The theory is that they will be more productive and perform better if they are better rested.  Still, this is a rarity in most places of business.

So what’s an average gal to do to get in a power nap?  Well, it isn’t always easy.  Finding time for power naps may take planning.  Scheduled naps are often better than emergency naps because they help you sleep before you are overly exhausted.  If you are home with kids who nap, take a power nap while they are sleeping.  Even if you spend 30 minutes napping, chances are you’ll have leftover time to get other things done, and you’ll be even more productive at them to boot.  If you work a regular daytime job, make time for naps on the weekend to recharge your body and get ready for the week to come.

Of course, naps should not be a reason you stay up later.  Nighttime sleep is still very important.  Also, your sleep environment should be one without too much stimulation such as that from televisions, electronics and bright lights, and should be set a comfortable temperature.

Enjoy your power naps when you can!  Sweet dreams!

The Risk of Hairband Infections

If you’re like most women you’ve found yourself putting your hairband around your wrist for the convenience of having one ready at all times. We’ve all done it! Hair ties are a pain, and it always seems just after buying a fresh ring, you come find a month later they are all missing. Unfortunately, we do not know the location of your missing hair ties, and although you might think saving your last band around your wrist is a good idea, it’s actually a health hazard. In fact, there are many health risks of wearing a hairband around your wrist for long periods of time. You can cut off blood flow and circulation, and your hairband can even cause abrasions which have the possibility to turn into harmful infections.

There have been many cases surrounding infections caused my hairbands, the most recent happened to a resident of Kentucky, Audree Kopp. After several hours of unpacking and moving in her things into a new place, Kopp noticed she had a bump on her arm that kept getting bigger and more painful. After taking antibiotics and still not seeing results, she decided to go to the emergency room. The doctors told her she has an infection and discovered three strains of bacteria. They told Kopp her sparkly hairband was the culprit, and it had caused tiny cuts in her skin where bacteria had entered her body and caused the infection to build and her arm to swell. Later doctors told her the infection could have been a lot worse if left untreated, and she could have developed far worse conditions such as blood poisoning or even death.

Experts suggest not wearing anything tight around your wrist because even accessories such as watches or bracelets can cause abrasions that can lead to infections. If you are to wear a hairband around your wrist never leave it on for too long, avoid sparkly bands that can scratch or cut your skin, and always clean your wrists when you wash your hands. To prevent any hairband infections, it’s suggested to not wear one at all around your wrist.

 

 

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