What Is the Worst Habit for Inflammation?

According to Dr. Grayver, a cardiologist at Northwell Health in New York, poor stress management is the worst habit for inflammation. Why? In part because stress causes the release of the stress hormone known as cortisol.

“Cortisol is one of those things that goes and disrupts the inner layer of our vasculature and creates unstable plaque,” Dr. Grayver says.

Wait—isn’t plaque a dental problem? Yes, but it’s also a cardiovascular issue. Dr. Grayver says that many people have stable plaque, which progresses slowly.

“When there’s inflammation, cortisol is released, it seeps out into our vasculature and it destroys that nice, contained fibrous cap sitting on top of the stable plaque and turns it into unstable plaque.”

Unstable plaque can become a problem quickly. “It’s the yucky plaque that breaks off, flows downward and causes things like stroke and heart attack,”.

It can also increase blood pressure, sugar and cholesterol, which can also heighten the risk of heart attack and stroke. “Stress causes a vicious cascade,” Dr. Grayver emphasizes.

That being said, some stress is OK—good, even. 

“Some stress is normal and allows us to achieve greater goals and create certain things,”. “Severe, chronic stress is what I want to hone in on. That can have a significant impact on heart health in multiple ways.”

What’s the difference? “Normal stress has more goal orientation,” she says. “It’s not the kind of stress keeping you up at night, leading you to make unhealthy choices or have horrible chronic fatigue.”

Other Habits That Can Negatively Impact Inflammation

Stress isn’t great, and reducing it is one way to lower your risk for inflammation. But Dr. Grayver says other lifestyle habits factor into inflammation.

Smoking is a big no-no for various reasons, including inflammation related to heart health. “It’s one of the unhealthiest habits,” Dr. Grayver says. “The chemicals in the tobacco [are terrible for you].”

Drinking too much alcohol can also increase inflammation.

“I’m not talking about one glass,” Dr. Grayver says. The CDC advises men to limit alcohol use to two drinks per day and women to stick to one. (A drink is defined as a 5 oz. glass of wine, 12 oz. glass of beer, or 1.5 ounces of hard liquor.) Dr. Grayver says anything more starts the inflammatory cascade. A 2017 review linked high alcohol consumption to inflammation.

Diet can also increase inflammation and the risk for heart disease risk, but Dr. Grayver says figuring out the best one for you can be a challenge.

“I was at a grocery store the other day,” she says. “There were 14 magazines displayed, and 12 of them mentioned the ‘heart-healthy diet.’”

Diets Dr. Grayver recommends include vegan, DASH and the Mediterranean Diet. Each is a bit different—vegan means no animal products, whereas Mediterranean and DASH are less rigid, for example. But the common ties include low sodium and an emphasis on fruits, veggies, nuts and lean—preferably plant-based—proteins.

Dr. Grayver noted people got into the habit of skipping regular check-ups during the COVID-19 pandemic. If that sounds familiar, it’s time to make an appointment—your doctor can catch symptoms of inflammation and heart disease, such as high blood pressure, cholesterol and biomarkers. Together, you can work to manage inflammation before it becomes worse.

The kicker? Stress makes people more likely to make these types of choices, Dr. Grayver says.

“It’s then easy to fall back on unhealthy coping mechanisms, like poor diet choices, alcohol and smoking,” she says.

What Is the Best Habit for Inflammation?

Dr. Grayver says exercise does the mind and body good, in part, by reducing stress. “I’m someone who has never been good at meditation, but when I exercise and do breathing during my run, that to me is meditating,” Dr. Grayver says.

Finding the right exercise routine for you is important, though. “There is not a cookie-cutter approach to anything, not in medicine, not in personal lifestyle,” Dr. Grayver says. “It’s important for people to find what works for them and makes them happy. If it works and makes them happy, they’ll continue it long-term.”

Source: http://www.msn.com/en-us/health

10 Best Hobbies for People with Anxiety 

The following 10 hobbies are fun activities that Sandra Glavan, Life Coach adopted to manage her anxiety. You don’t need to introduce all of these 10 activities, to relieve your anxiety.

One hobby is perfect enough.


1. Writing Expressively

I have intentionally listed writing at the top because I highly recommend to every person with anxiety to try expressive writing as a way of releasing their thoughts and emotions. 

Expressive writing is a highly effective anxiety management technique, and in my experience once you start to notice the benefits you are likely to get pleasure from engaging in this activity.

2. Listening to Calming Music 

Regularly listening to calming music can be a highly effective way to calm down quickly and ease your anxiety symptoms.

One study in 2017 concluded that

Music listening is associated with a decreased level of anxiety and distress.

This is one of my favorite hobbies for relieving anxiety, because I realized very early on that each time I would put on my headphones and listen to relaxing sounds on YouTube my anxiety would start to ease instantly.

I found this to be incredible, and putting on calming music became one of my emergency anti-anxiety measures.

3. Reading Empowering Books

A 2009 study at the University of Sussex found that reading can reduce stress by up to 68%, so this is a highly effective hobby for people suffering from stress and anxiety.

Reading powerful books by beautiful authors such as Louise Hay, Eckhart Tolle, Jen Sincero, Deepak Chopra, Bruce Lipton, Thich Nhat Hanh, Jack Kornfield, Shakti Gawain, and Wayne Dyer, helped me to get out a very dark anxiety hole.

I can’t thank these people enough for spreading such powerful messages and I have come to love their work so much.

Without exaggeration, I have read some of their books over and over again and I still pick them up now and read a few random pages when I need to be inspired.

If you don’t have the time to read, you can listen to all of these books instead by signing up to a platform such as Audible.

View all 10 hobbies for stress relief below:

Hint: Could you enjoy walking, yoga or eating? Click below and find out!

Source: 10 Best Hobbies for People with Anxiety to Calm You Down Instantly (amosuir.com)

Don’t Believe These Myths About Gas Stoves

Gas stoves are the latest innocuous item to turn into a culture war symbol, due to rumors that they might, at some point in the future, be banned. But are gas stoves really that bad for us? Are government agents going to come and take them away? And if the health concerns are real, are we doomed?

© Photo: PandaStudio (Shutterstock)

The government is not coming to take your gas stove

If you’ve been paying attention to the political controversy, you may have noticed some political figures yelling about how they are prepared to physically defend their gas ranges from government intervention.

There aren’t even any regulations pending

This whole firestorm was ignited when a member of the Consumer Product Safety Commission said in an interview that the CPSC is planning to open a public comment period soon about how and whether to regulate indoor air pollution from gas stoves. This regulation might include include things like warning labels on the stoves or requirements for ventilation when they are installed, but the member also remarked that “products that can’t be made safe can be banned.”

The head of the CPSC clarified that there’s no ban in the works, and that the agency is “exploring new ways to address health risks” including voluntary industry standards.

The link between gas stoves and health concerns is real

So are gas stoves bad for us? Probably! Studies have linked childhood asthma to growing up with a gas stove. The cause-and-effect hasn’t been fully teased out, though. For one thing, kids who breathe the indoor air pollution from gas stoves are often exposed to a lot of outdoor air pollution as well.

But we do know that gas stoves release nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide, and particulates—all of which are considered indoor air pollution. Cooking on electric and other ranges can also emit particulates, hinting that ventilation for all types of cooking is probably a good idea. But we know that gas stoves create more of these types of air pollution than electric ranges.

All in all, there is good reason to be concerned about the health effects of gas stoves. It’s not a rip-your-stove-out emergency, but if you happen to be shopping for a new stove, you might want to consider electric or induction ranges.

There are ways to mitigate the health concerns

One thing that’s gotten lost in the recent controversy is that gas stoves aren’t a take-it-or-leave-it proposition. If you have a gas stove and are concerned about the health effects, there are things you can do to mitigate the risk.

The biggest one is ventilation. Some stoves are installed with a range hood above them, which sucks air from the vicinity of the stovetop, and blows it…somewhere. This is where it’s worth finding out what kind you have. Some exhaust the air to the outside, while others just blow it back into your face—hopefully after passing it through a filter.

Venting your range hood outside is great if you can swing it—definitely something to consider if you’re renovating your kitchen. In the meantime, consider opening windows or using fans in the room for extra ventilation when you’re cooking. (Some older houses have a fan built into the wall for this purpose.) If you don’t use your range hood because it’s loud and annoying, a quieter range hood could be a good investment.

Another way to address the particulate matter in the kitchen is with a HEPA filtered air purifier. This will pull particulates out of the air, and they tend to run quietly and be unobtrusive.

Source: https://lifehacker.com/

Colon Cancer Claimed Kirstie Alley and Pelé. Here are the Key Symptoms.

Colon cancer is the fourth most diagnosed form of cancer in the United States. One of the biggest aspects in preventing colon cancer is working to live a healthy lifestyle through diet and exercise. Regular screenings with a physician are also critical due to early detection making treatment significantly easier and more effective.

  • etnt©

Colon Cancer Symptoms

According to Dr. Nelson, colorectal surgeon, “Colon cancer symptoms present typically when the disease is advanced and may not even be treatable or curable at that point.  Those symptoms are rectal bleeding (usually dark blood and clots; sometimes passing tissue).  Pelvic pain is worrisome as is abdominal pain.  Unexplained weight loss and loss of appetite are concerning.  Unexplained anemia and an abdominal mass are late presentations of right sided colon cancers in some cases.  Many times, there will be a change in bowel habit, which can be the first presenting symptom that something may be amiss.  Although, the list is long of things that can cause that that aren’t cancer related.  Colonoscopy would be indicated in all these instances.”

 Dr. Wilkinson, Radiation Oncologist, explains, “Many patients in the early stages of colon cancer do not experience any significant symptoms. However, as the cancer develops patients may begin to experience changes to their usual bowel habits, such as constipation, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, feeling as if you haven’t emptied your bowel after a bowel movement, light or dark blood in your stool, loss of appetite, weight loss, pain during bowel movements and stomach pains. If a patient is experiencing any of these symptoms, they should seek medical consultation.”

Although the jury is still out as to why exactly colon cancer rates are climbing in individuals under 50, many physicians point to the increase in the prevalence of unhealthy lifestyles as a major cause. Smoking, alcohol consumption, obesity, and highly processed diets are all contributing factors for increased colon cancer rates

An individual can reduce their risk of colon cancer by:

  • Exercising at least 3 times a week for at least 30 minutes each session.
  • Eating a diet that is high in fiber, fruits, the right kinds of vegetables, and whole grains while remaining low in saturated fat and added sugar.
  • Removing chemicals from your lifestyle, which means that you avoid smoking or drinking in general.
  • Avoiding overeating and if you are obese, start to make small, incremental improvements to your lifestyle on a daily basis to slim down and reduce negative health effects.
  • Knowing your family history, because if colon, rectal or other types of cancer are in your family, you’ll need to take the above steps even more seriously.”
  • Source: eatthis.com/health/

14 Early Warning Signs Your Blood Sugar Is Super High

(Eat These Foods To Reverse It)


The foods you should eat to control the symptoms of diabetes

Diet plays a significant role in controlling as well as reducing the symptoms of diabetes you experience. You need to have food that contains low glycemic index as foods with a high index can increase the level of glucose in your blood [4]. Hence, you should have foods with a low GI only. The GI index is measured from 0-100, and those with a GI of 55 or below are completely safe for consumption. Here’s a list of the foods you should eat:

  • Broccoli
  • Nuts
  • Hummus
  • Eggs
  • Cashew nuts
  • Yogurt
  • Cherries
  • Apples (medium-sized)
  • Turkey Sausage
  • Onions (medium-sized)
  • Green grapes
  • Spaghetti
  • Tomato juice
  • Carrots
  • Peas
  • Pineapple juice
  • Banana
  • Grapefruit
  • Oranges

Keep in mind that the above-mentioned foods are only safe for consumption if you have them in limited quantities, which means you shouldn’t have more than a cup of any of them daily.

Just as you should include the above foods in your diet to lead a healthy lifestyle despite being diabetic, you should also avoid certain foods. These include popcorn, white rice, white bread, potatoes, cornflakes, glucose, processed meals, sweetmeats, etc. All of these have a very high GI.

Regular exercise and diet changes can go a long way in keeping diabetes in control. So make sure you don’t make any sacrifices in this regard as diabetes can be fatal if you let it go out of control.

Source: stylecraze.com

Is Movie Sex Is Ruining Your Sex Life

When movies get hot and steamy, it can look picture perfect. You rarely see the mess—or even the laughs—that make a real-life physical connection so special. Actors with personal trainers, stunning lighting and directors carefully posing them make it seem easy.  “Some people feel inadequate, comparing themselves to movie stars, despite the fact that many actors look like the rest of us when they’re not made up,” says certified sex therapist Grace Landes. “We only see actors at their best, with their hair done, and in great clothes, or naked, in perfectly staged angles, and elegant lighting.” If viewing those svelte, stunning bodies tears you down instead of revving you up, you’re not alone. According to the Deseret News, men, as well as women, experience body image dissatisfaction, when they compare themselves with Hollywood hunks.

© iStock/stella_photo20

Everyday life doesn’t bleed into the movies

Not only are characters in movies better looking than the rest of us, but their homes are more fabulous too.  When movie scenes heat up in the bedroom, characters aren’t tripping over dirty laundry on the floor. When lovers slip into a bubble bath together on screen, there’s no grime around the drain.  Most of us have to juggle our sex lives with the rest of our lives, and that means planning for laundry, cooking, childcare and earning a living. Movie sex is unfettered sex, which is out of reach for many people. “It’s not rare for a couple to come onto my office and use a movie as a reference point for how they wish their sex life operated,” says Chris Donaghue, PhD, author of Sex Outside the Lines: Authentic Sexuality in a Sexually Dysfunctional Culture. “Hollywood’s depiction of sex in movies is typically centered around big, bold acts of love and attraction. Characters in film have no boundaries, whereas typical couples have finances, careers, and family, which may all limit the magnitude of their sex lives. In film,” he adds, “none of these constraints exist, and it can make the average, American couple feel negative about their own sexuality.”

All it takes is a sidelong glance

Ever hear of foreplay? Most Hollywood directors haven’t. Characters on film are always ready, all the time, to jump in the sack. They don’t need to get in the mood, shave their armpits, or reach for the K-Y jelly. They never lose their erections prematurely, feel pain during intercourse, or have post-menopausal dryness. Manual stimulation? Unnecessary. Connecting emotionally? A waste of time. All movie characters have to do is see each other from across a crowded room, and boom, it’s orgasm city. This Hollywood-like depiction of sex couldn’t be farther from the truth, and leaves many people feeling inadequate and wondering what’s wrong with them.

You’ve got baggage

Hot Hollywood sex often centers around a couple that has just started their sexual relationship. Rarely do we see established couples gloriously intertwined in decadent sex. In a movie if someone gets hurt in a relationship they typically move on, but we know real life can be more nuanced. These feelings tend to invade the bedroom, damaging many people’s sex lives.

No glove, no love—unless you’re on the silver screen

In movies, condoms rarely make it into sex scenes. In real life, this omission can result in sexually transmitted infections (STIs), unwanted pregnancy and even increased levels of sexual pressure if one partner feels uncomfortable proceeding without a condom. 

That broccoli you ate made you a little bloated

Human beings have human bodies and sometimes, those bodies produce less-than-sexy smells, sights and tastes. Morning breath, post-workout sweat, and the occasional gassy oops may not fit Hollywood’s definition of hot, but these all-too-human vulnerabilities can bring us closer to our partners and help them see and love us, warts and all. They may even help us to love ourselves a little bit more, when we can let go and be ourselves, rather than a celluloid version of who we think we should be in bed.

Article source: msn.com/en-us/health/other/6-reasons-movie-sex-is-ruining-your-sex-life

Signs of a Vitamin D Deficiency

We wear sunscreen, stay inside (with jobs) more, it’s winter when there is less UV due to the sun being lower in the sky, so our diets are low in vitamin D.

Lisa Richards, a nutritionist and creator of the Candida Diet tells us, “Signs and symptoms of a vitamin D deficiency can easily be passed off as just a side effect of your busy and exhausting lifestyle. But, chronic fatigue and other symptoms can be signs of a serious vitamin D deficiency. Other surprising signs of vitamin D deficiency include hair loss, muscle pain, and depression.” Emma Louise Kirkham Women’s Hormone Health Coach & Dietary Supplements Advisor says, “Deficiency in vitamin D can be exhibited as back pains, joint pain or stiffness, muscular twitches or spasms, weakened bones, arthritis of osteoporosis, hair loss, tooth decay, fatigue and often getting ill. In addition to this women may experience premenstrual syndrome, PCOS or fertility struggles which are also linked to vitamin D deficiency (amongst other nutritional deficiencies).”

Dr. Jacob Hascalovici MD, PhD, Clearing Chief Medical Officer explains, “The benefits of vitamin D intake include protecting your bones, potentially helping stabilize your mood, and possibly fighting cancer. It’s clear that vitamin D is essential and that the body suffers if you do not get enough of it. It’s important not to exceed 4,000 IU per day, as too much vitamin D can contribute to nausea, vomiting, kidney stones, heart damage, and cancer.

Photo and article credit: © Eat This, Not That

Health Alert: Lead and Cadmium Could Be in Your Dark Chocolate

Consumer Reports found dangerous heavy metals in chocolate from Hershey’s, Theo, Trader Joe’s and other popular brands. Here are the ones that had the most, and some that are safer.

Photo Illustration: Melissa Paterno Plonchak/Consumer Reports, Getty Images

For many of us, chocolate is more than just a tasty treat. It’s a mood lifter, an energy booster, a reward after a tough day, a favorite holiday gift. 

People also choose dark chocolate in particular for its potential health benefits, thanks to studies that suggest its rich supply of antioxidants may improve heart health and other conditions, and for its relatively low levels of sugar. In fact, more than half of people in a recent survey from the National Confectioners Association described dark chocolate as a “better for you” candy.

But there’s a dark side to this “healthier” chocolate. Research has found that some dark chocolate bars contain cadmium and lead—two heavy metals linked to a host of health problems in children and adults. 

The chocolate industry has been grappling with ways to lower those levels. To see how much of a risk these favorite treats pose, Consumer Reports scientists recently measured the amount of heavy metals in 28 dark chocolate bars. They detected cadmium and lead in all of them.

Heavy Metals in Dark Chocolate

CR tested a mix of brands, including smaller ones, such as Alter Eco and Mast, and more familiar ones, like Dove and Ghirardelli. 

For 23 of the bars, eating just an ounce a day would put an adult over a level that public health authorities and CR’s experts say may be harmful for at least one of those heavy metals. Five of the bars were above those levels for both cadmium and lead.

That’s risky stuff: Consistent, long-term exposure to even small amounts of heavy metals can lead to a variety of health problems. The danger is greatest for pregnant women and young children because the metals can cause developmental problems, affect brain development, and lead to lower IQ, says Tunde Akinleye, the CR food safety researcher who led this testing project. 

CR’s Chocolate Test Results

Safer Choices


Organic Dark Chocolate
80% Cocoa





Taza Chocolate

Organic Deliciously Dark Chocolate
70% Cacao






Intense Dark Chocolate
86% Cacao






Intense Dark Chocolate Twilight Delight
72% Cacao






Abinao Dark Chocolate
85% Cacao





High in Both Lead & Cadmium


Organic Pure Dark
70% Cocoa





Trader Joe’s

The Dark Chocolate Lover’s Chocolate
85% Cacao






Organic Extra Dark Pure Dark Chocolate
85% Cocoa






Extremely Dark Chocolate
85% Cocoa





Green & Black’s

Organic Dark Chocolate
70% Cacao





Better Ways to Eat Dark Chocolate

Choose dark chocolates with the lowest levels of heavy metals

Treat chocolate as a treat

Try dark chocolates with lower cacao percentages

Alternate with milk chocolate

Don’t assume organic dark chocolates are safer

Don’t give kids much dark chocolate

Read the complete article at the link below.

Source: Lead and Cadmium Could Be in Your Dark Chocolate – Consumer Reports

Add These Disease-Fighting Foods to Your Diet to Live a Longer Life

While there are many factors—like environment, family history, and age—that can affect how long you live, there’s no shortage of research to back up the very strong connection between diet and longevity.

“Fruits and vegetables contain compounds that reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, some cancers, chronic respiratory diseases, diabetes, and obesity, which is one of the reasons health experts are constantly trying to encourage people to eat more of them,” says Frances Largeman-Roth, RDN, author of Eating in Color.

But fruits and veggies aren’t the only foods you should be nourishing your body with to play your best defense against diseases. Here is a laundry list of the most nutritious foods to add to your diet to improve your longevity and protect your health.

©Dave Bradley


Beans, peas, lentils, peanuts, and chickpeas are excellent sources of fiber and plant-based protein to stabilize blood sugar and keep cravings at bay. They also help nourish a healthy microbiome.


While eggs have high cholesterol content, research shows that it doesn’t affect your overall blood cholesterol the same way that saturated fats do. In fact, one meta-analysis published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, found that individuals with a high egg intake (about seven a week), had a 12 percent reduced risk of stroke compared to those who had a low egg intake (less than two a week).

Leafy greens

Leafy green vegetables, like spinach, kale, and Swiss chard, are chock-full of folate, which is vital for cell growth and red blood cell formation. They also back carotenes (pigments that act as antioxidants) that help maintain healthy vision, bones, teeth, and skin.

“Folate from natural food sources helps protect brain function as we age,” Dixon says. On the other hand, “carotenes bring a boost of antioxidants, which protect against DNA decay or the breakdown of cells,” she adds. “This damage can accumulate over time, contributing to cancer and heart disease.”

Just be sure to stick with whole foods to get your fill of folate, instead of supplements. Taking folic acid supplements can increase your risk of certain cancers, notably colon cancer, Dixon says.

Cruciferous vegetables

Cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and radishes, support the body’s natural detoxification processes. “We have ‘detox’ enzymes, or chemical systems, within our cells (particularly in the liver), and the activity of these enzymes is bolstered by the presence of specific substances found only in cruciferous vegetables,” Dixon says.

Cruciferous veggies are especially beneficial for women, as they help to keep estrogen levels healthy and thwart off hormone-related cancers such as breast, ovarian, endometrial (uterine). Dixon suggests sneaking in at least five servings of cruciferous veggies into your meals each week.

Extra-virgin olive oil

Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) has been a culinary staple for more reasons than it’s plain delicious. It’s proven to help reduce inflammation, lower blood pressure, and improve insulin sensitivity, Dixon says.

“Extra virgin olive oil has an excellent record of research demonstrating benefits to the cardiovascular system, which is particularly important to note these days, given the fact that heart disease is the number one killer in the U.S.,” says Dixon.

Make a homemade salad dressing with EVOO, drizzle some over veggies before roasting them to get them nice and crisp, and sub it in for butter in recipes to reduce saturated fat.

Fatty fish

Make fatty fish, such as wild salmon, herring, mackerel and sardines, a part of your weekly diet. “Hundreds of studies support the use of small fatty fish for brain health, as they contain omega-3 fatty acids and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), which feeds the brain and prevents loss of memory and depression,” says Susan Schenck, LAc, MOTM, author of The Live Food Factor.

Sweet potatoes

Okinawans are known for living long, healthy lives and have one of the largest populations of centenarians (people who live to 100) in the world. One secret to their longevity? Sweet potatoes, which are loaded with vitamin A, potassium, and fiber.

Want more hints? Click link below.

Source: Add These Disease-Fighting Foods to Your Diet to Live a Longer Life (msn.com)

Snacking Tonight? Here are 15 Best Weight-Loss Snacks

While research on whether snacking aids weight loss is mixed, some evidence suggests that increasing your meal frequency through snacking may help manage hunger and improve blood sugar regulation.


Aim for snacks that include protein, fiber, and healthy fats, which help keep you full throughout the day and make healthy choices at your next meal.

While no one snack will lead to weight loss, these snacks may help promote weight loss as part of an overall healthy eating pattern.

Here are 15 of the best weight-loss snacks:

%d bloggers like this: