PMS: How to avoid shark week

If you’re a female, then you know you’ve been there. Life’s going great, you’re feeling awesome. Then Aunt Flow comes for a visit. If you’re anything like me, your mood changes and the cramps begin immediately. While I usually just muster through them, most people around me feel the effects. I turn into a shark,…

PMS: How to avoid shark week was originally published on Self Evolve

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If you’re a female, then you know you’ve been there. Life’s going great, you’re feeling awesome. Then Aunt Flow comes for a visit. If you’re anything like me, your mood changes and the cramps begin immediately. While I usually just muster through them, most people around me feel the effects. I turn into a shark, sometimes snapping at those I love the most. After the week of hell is over, I usually feel bad and have a lot of grovelling to do. In order to avoid all of this, I found a PMS survival kit that has helped save my social life.

My PMS Kits

Made for women by women, these kits come customized to your needs. Every woman is different. I know for me, I crave sweets and chocolate during my period. I also get killer cramps that could leave me curled up in a ball for hours if I let them overtake me. All the products are organic and natural, which is helpful especially since most female hygiene products have bleach and fragrances which can be harmful and irritating to the uterus. There’s more than just products in the kits though.

What you get

Beauty products, essential oils, heating pads, chocolates, candy, tea, and of course the necessary tampons, pads or diva cup. You may also get some extra stuff you wouldn’t expect from a PMS kit. All in all, very handy stuff to make the week go by smoother.

How do you get through shark week?

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PMS: How to avoid shark week was originally published on Self Evolve

Love languages and what they mean

What’s your love language? I know this isn’t necessarily fitness related, but some may argue that love and relationships affect your health. And if you’re currently in a relationship of any kind and not actually moving forward, it’s time to jump ship. See what I did there? Anyways, today I’m going to dive into the…

Love languages and what they mean was originally published on Self Evolve

What’s your love language?

I know this isn’t necessarily fitness related, but some may argue that love and relationships affect your health. And if you’re currently in a relationship of any kind and not actually moving forward, it’s time to jump ship. See what I did there? Anyways, today I’m going to dive into the 5 common love languages and what each one means.

Quality Time

This is actually my primary love language. I absolutely adore spending one on one time with the person I love. Putting the phone away and just talking and listening. Going on adventures, trying new things together. Or cuddling in silence. Or falling asleep together while watching TV. I’ve said too much.. but even working out and sweating together counts as quality time in my book.

Acts of Service

Believe it or not, I also enjoy a guy willing to help me out. Of course, I am very independent. But once in awhile I need a guy to help me with a project in my condo or for work. I adore a guy willing to help me as much as I help him.

Physical Touch

This is a close second for me. I love holding hands with the right guy. Or having his arm around me. I also greatly enjoy giving and receiving massages. But no tickles!

Words of Affirmation

I think when I was younger, I craved compliments. As I’ve matured, my confidence has increased and my self-love has grown. I still appreciate a nice compliment, but it depends on what’s being said and the delivery. I dislike guys who wait till the last minute to compliment me after spending an entire evening with me. Or the guys who will only text their thoughts rather than say them out loud in public.

Receiving gifts

To be honest, I don’t really enjoy gifts all that often. Once in awhile, sure. But this would likely be the last love language for me. But I do know the thought behind the gift is what matters. I like to give gifts and put thought into them for others so can definitely see this as a good way to express one’s love.

How many love languages do you have?

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Love languages and what they mean was originally published on Self Evolve

How much do wellness programs save?

Have you ever watched a child pick up a full glass of punch and start walking? The outcome is inevitable, there will be punch on the floor. The outcome is predictable because we’ve seen the same thing happen in the past. Our best predictors of the future come from the past. This applies to more…

How much do wellness programs save? was originally published on Self Evolve

Have you ever watched a child pick up a full glass of punch and start walking? The outcome is inevitable, there will be punch on the floor. The outcome is predictable because we’ve seen the same thing happen in the past. Our best predictors of the future come from the past. This applies to more than just kids and punch, it also applies to employee healthcare costs. The best predictor of future healthcare costs is past healthcare costs. Insurance companies call this credibility. While there are other predictors, it has been shown that wellness programs can also influence company medical costs.

Wellness Programs cut costs

Healthcare cost increases are worse than the cost increases associated with labor, materials or energy. According to a recent business roundtable survey, CEO’s rank the cost of health care as one of the biggest threats to company profits. But the good news is wellness programs have been shown to save money. There are Wellness ROI calculators that companies can use to see just how much they can save with a wellness program. These wellness ROI calculators forecast how employee wellness programs can impact future healthcare costs, absenteeism, and productivity. The ROI calculator for healthcare costs can help you determine whether an investment in a wellness program makes sense for your company.

You will need just three pieces of information: 1) your company’s total healthcare costs over the past 12 months, 2) the total number of benefited employees, and 3) the percentage change in healthcare costs each year for the past 5 years.

It would be good if you knew the percentage of your employee population who were smokers and who were obese. Once you have entered this information, you will get several graphs.

  • First, you will see the “Cost of doing nothing.” This is what will happen to healthcare costs over the next several years if you do nothing. This forecast is based on the notion that healthcare cost increases will continue as they have. Of course, it is possible that the rate of increase may slow or accelerate. We just don’t know what direction costs will head, so we have assumed that things will continue as they have in the past.
  • Second, because we have a very good idea of the independent costs of smoking and obesity, the ROI calculator can project about how much you would save if you decreased the percentage of employees who smoke and the percentage of employees who are obese.
  • Third, the ROI calculator will project what you would save with a comprehensive wellness program versus the cost of doing nothing.

So what?

Over 5,000 U.S. companies use the Wellness ROI calculators each month. This tool helps move wellness programs from a fun employee perk to a core business strategy, which is something every successful company should consider if they are to stay competitive. You can continue to bear the burden of ever increasing healthcare costs or you can start to get proactive about using a comprehensive wellness program to help your employees have optimal health and stay out of the healthcare system. Not to mention the mental health benefits.

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How much do wellness programs save? was originally published on Self Evolve

These 5 habits will add 10+ years to your life

We’re all creatures of habit, but the habits we have shape way more than just how we feel. New research from Harvard shows that following these simple habits can add years to your life. The average lifespan for a man and woman is 72 and 75 years, respectively. If you incorporate these habits, you can add…

These 5 habits will add 10+ years to your life was originally published on Self Evolve

We’re all creatures of habit, but the habits we have shape way more than just how we feel. New research from Harvard shows that following these simple habits can add years to your life. The average lifespan for a man and woman is 72 and 75 years, respectively. If you incorporate these habits, you can add anywhere from 10 to 14 years with the average being 12 years for men and 14 years for women. None of these habits should come as a surprise, but are pretty simple to focus on and incorporate into your daily life.

Habits to add a decade

  1. Eating healthy
  2. Exercising regularly
  3. Maintaining a healthy body weight
  4. Not smoking
  5. Moderate alcohol consumption

To dive further into these, what does eating healthy look like? With so many diets out there, I’m actually going to say don’t diet. Instead, focus on eating a variety of foods, with the main focus being on whole foods. Avoiding or lessening processed foods will do wonders. For me, I like to track my food to hold myself accountable on what I’m eating. But to be honest, I cheat on the weekends. It would be very hard to eat clean 100% of the time, so instead I try to focus on eating well for at least 5 days a week, if not more. But Saturday comes around and it’s Cinco de Mayo, I’m gonna get those tacos.

Exercising regularly is also kind of vague. Most people hear regularly and think at least 3-4 times a week. I hear it and I think active lifestyle, where there’s no true “rest” day. For me, I focus on working out at least 5 times a week. That’s where I’m in the gym doing strength training and/or a high-intensity interval training (cardio) 5 times a week. Outside of these workouts? I’m walking, practicing yoga, running outside, staying active. I don’t really have a rest day, even on Sundays I make it a point to get to 12,000 steps minimum. Even something little is more than zero, so focus on being active and moving everyday.

Maintaining a healthy body weight can be misleading. So many people focus on the number on the scale, but I challenge everyone to instead focus on their body fat percentage. It’s proven with less fat, there’s less stress on our heart, organs, and bones. But your weight may not go all the way down if you’re building muscle. Actually, something crazy happened to me. I lost about 12 pounds to get down to 19% body fat. Then I gained about 5 pounds in muscle. While I still have that lower body fat, technically my weight is on the higher end of ideal. But I look and feel great, and my clothes are big on me.

Not smoking is straight-forward but when people hear smoking they think cigarettes. Smoking also includes cigars and marijuana. So next time you light up, think about the years you’re cutting off of your life. Is it worth it?

Moderate alcohol consumption can be misunderstood. What it means is up to one drink a day for women and two drinks a day for men. So when you go out for St. Patrick’s Day and have ten drinks, that’s not moderate. And research shows it’s healthier and better to have one drink a day rather than drink seven drinks on one night a week. Spread out the booze and you’ll live longer.

Do you incorporate these habits in your life?

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These 5 habits will add 10+ years to your life was originally published on Self Evolve

Health supplements to take to unleash your fitness

Do you take supplements? If so, which ones? Fitness isn’t just about hitting the gym, it goes beyond those intense workouts. Your diet plays a huge role in your fitness and health. Some say even more so than lifting or running all day. Supplements are trending more and more, even making their way to India.…

Health supplements to take to unleash your fitness was originally published on Self Evolve

Do you take supplements?

If so, which ones? Fitness isn’t just about hitting the gym, it goes beyond those intense workouts. Your diet plays a huge role in your fitness and health. Some say even more so than lifting or running all day. Supplements are trending more and more, even making their way to India. The main driving factor? Social media. But with all the images and information out there, it can be difficult to navigate through which supplements are actually beneficial to you. 

The supplements I take

  • Multivitamin: I take a women’s multivitamin daily. My favorite brand is Vimerson Health, I order it from Amazon and a bottle lasts me a month. This vitamin helps fuel me, so I take them every morning.
  • BCAA’s: I can’t say enough good things about Xtend BCAA’s. They have helped me achieve my fitness goals and continue to help fuel me during and after my workouts. I like to take these right after working out, or right before depending on my mood. Sometimes both.
  • Protein: While I prefer to get my protein naturally, sometimes it is necessary to drink a protein shake. My favorite, hands down, is Vega protein. It’s vegan and delicious. I get the chocolate flavor, but I’m sure the other flavors are great too. I’m just a choco-holic.

Things I don’t take

For the most part, I don’t take pre-workout. Sometimes I do take it when I’m feeling extra-tired, but I don’t find it necessary at all times. I also don’t take creatine. For some reason, I just don’t find the need to add in extra supplements into my daily routine. If it ain’t broke, why fix it? What do you think?

What supplements do you take to reach your fitness goals?

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Health supplements to take to unleash your fitness was originally published on Self Evolve

Exercise to have a younger heart

It happens to everyone As we age, the heart becomes less flexible, more stiff and just isn’t as efficient in processing oxygen as it used to be. In most people, the first signs show up in the 50s or early 60s. And among people who don’t exercise, these changes can start even sooner. According to…

Exercise to have a younger heart was originally published on Self Evolve

It happens to everyone

As we age, the heart becomes less flexible, more stiff and just isn’t as efficient in processing oxygen as it used to be. In most people, the first signs show up in the 50s or early 60s. And among people who don’t exercise, these changes can start even sooner. According to Dr. Ben Levine, a sports cardiologist at University of Texas, the heart gets smaller and stiffer. This stiffness can lead to breathlessness and other symptoms of heart failure. Fortunately, a recent study done by Levine finds that even if you haven’t been an avid exerciser, getting in shape in midlife may head off that decline and help you have a younger heart.

The study

The research recruited individuals between the ages of 45 and 64 who were mostly sedentary but otherwise healthy. 53 volunteers undertook the two-year study. Participants were randomly assigned to one of two groups. The first group engaged in a program of nonaerobic exercise- basic yoga, balance training, and weight training- three times a week. The other group was assigned a trainer and did moderate- to high-intensity aerobic exercise for four or more days a week. After two years, the group doing the higher-intensity exercise saw dynamic improvements to heart health. The hearts of those engaged in less intense routines didn’t change.

Keys to a younger heart

A key part of the effective exercise regimen was interval training. Short bursts of high-intensity exercises followed by a few minutes of rest are key (4X4 intervals). Pushing as hard as you can for four minutes stresses the heart and forces it to function more efficiently. Repeating the intervals helps strengthen both the heart and circulatory system. And the sweet spot in life to get off the couch and start exercising is in late middle age when the heart still has plasticity. You may not be able to reverse the aging of the vessel if you wait.

Of course, if you’re considering beginning a strenuous exercise program, you should check with a doctor first and ask about individual health issues that might warrant a less intense program initially.

What drives you to exercise?

 

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Exercise to have a younger heart was originally published on Self Evolve

Losing weight before puberty can prevent diabetes

Being a heavy kid is common More than 23 percent of all children worldwide are overweight or obese. Not only are heavy kids more likely to face bullies in the schoolyard, they are also more likely to develop Type 2 Diabetes later on in adulthood. That was the common belief, until a new study shows…

Losing weight before puberty can prevent diabetes was originally published on Self Evolve

Being a heavy kid is common

pubertyMore than 23 percent of all children worldwide are overweight or obese. Not only are heavy kids more likely to face bullies in the schoolyard, they are also more likely to develop Type 2 Diabetes later on in adulthood. That was the common belief, until a new study shows that as long as these kids lose the weight before they turn 13, the risk of diabetes reduces greatly. This is the first and largest study to show if weight reduction is done before puberty the future risk of disease is lowered.

A difference of a few pounds

We’re not talking extremes here, we’re talking just carrying extra pounds and shedding these changing risk of disease significantly. This new study showed that being overweight at age seven, 13 and in early adulthood made it four times more likely that the person would develop diabetes. Adding extra pounds by the time puberty arrives and keeping them on as an adult posed a 3.87-fold greater risk.

Puberty is the magical timeframe

Among children who became overweight, only the seven-year-olds who lost it by age 13 didn’t have an increased risk. Youngsters who were overweight at age seven and 13 but lost the extra weight by early adulthood were still 51 percent more likely to develop type 2 diabetes when they grew up. This gives us hope for the future. We can help children normalize their weight through exercise and lifestyle changes, not just diet. And just because a child may be overweight as a youngster, we can teach them good, healthy habits before they hit puberty to help them start and continue a healthy lifestyle.

Do you help your kids live a healthy lifestyle?

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Losing weight before puberty can prevent diabetes was originally published on Self Evolve