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Are you the proud owner of this beer belly?While you must have earned a lot of 'brownie pints', a beer gut is not quite something one can be awfully proud of, as it is positively dangerous for your health. Well for one this condition seems to be a common affliction amongst men more than women (though it isn't entirely unknown for women to guzzle beer). A beer gut is normally found in middle aged men as a token for services rendered to a sedentary lifestyle and hours spent accumulating empty calories. How is a beer belly formed? A protruding mid-section in men is generally formed when they consume more than they burn off. So given a busy lifestyle with very little exercise and discretion one generally can end up consuming lot many calories than one is willing to toss out. According to Dr Michael Jensen MD, endocrine and obesity expert at the Mayo clinic, the liver burns calories earned from alcohol instead of the existing fat. So say, if an average beer is around 150 calories plus all the tiny appetizers one has along with the beer (Pizzas, cuts, chips etc.) one can easily understand how these go about accumulating around the belly area in to a paunch. And because the liver was all too busy burning the calories guzzled from the beer, the rest finds a cozy place to settle around the tummy. This is exactly what gives majority of men and some women the infamous paunch or beer gut! GIVE YOUR PAUNCH A PUNCH IN THE FACE Well for starters be a giver and not a taker. Which means give more time to exercise like running, cycling, swimming, skipping, dancing or aerobics which should take care of visceral fat (which is easiest to shake off, by the way). As one ages their calorie needs go down, but then so do their physical activity levels and this is where the fat creeps in. Stick to light beer if you must but do not miss your exercise regimen for anything in the world.  
Preparing for fatherhoodFrom the time you decide to go for a baby, all the attention is concentrated on the mother-to-be. And this is not without reason, since she is the one that's going to bear the child for the next nine months. But that doesn't mean that the man's role is any less important. It is important for the father-to-be to ready himself for the next phase of his life. Following a healthy lifestyle Fertility is a growing problem. As per statistics more than 45% of infertility issues are related to men. Therefore, eating healthy food, exercising and living the healthy way will boost your chances of getting over these problems. Nutrition has an impact on the sperm production. So scrap the junk food for a while and get on to a healthy lifestyle. Men need to get at least 12 to 15 mg of zinc each day. Even short-term zinc deficiencies can reduce semen volume and testosterone levels, much needed for healthy sperms. Good sources of zinc include baked beans (a one-cup serving has 3.55 mg), nuts, cereals, seafood, and chicken meat (2.38 mg per three ounces). Regular intake of vitamins and calcium is a must to improve male fertility and prevent sperm defects. Natural sources of calcium such as fat-free milk and curd can be consumed. Get atleast 90mg of vitamin C daily. This boosts immunity. More will be needed if you smoke. Folic acid is a fuel for healthy sperms. Dads need 400 micrograms of it and green leafy vegetables are good sources of this nutrient. Dads-to-be can take the liberty to grab the extra cup of mocha. Caffeine may help men by stimulating sperm motility. Quit smoking and drinking The party's over for your partner once you start trying for a baby, but what about you? Same goes for men. Now is the time to stop smoking, and to stop any excessive consumption of alcohol. A man who smokes has a lower sperm count and a misshapen sperm, incapable of creating a child. Heavy or binge drinking can seriously affect ability to produce quality sperm. Exercise Add exercise session to your daily routine if you aren't doing them already. Exercise improves general health, stamina, and sperm quality. Start with walking for 15 minutes and increase it gradually if you have never exercised before. If you are trying for a baby, avoid exercising in tight-fitting briefs. It causes damage to sperms. Frequent sessions in a sauna or hot tub, long bicycle rides, or any such activity that could cause the testicles to become overheated can compromise the health of sperm and should be avoided. Medical examinations It is a good idea for the father-to-be to have a complete check-up to assess if there are any issues that need to be addressed before trying for a baby. Some conditions to watch out for include: Varicocele, a condition of varicose veins on the scrotum, the sac of skin that contains the testicles. It can lead to infertility. The condition is entirely treatable, so talk to your doctor about the options. Conditions like erectile dysfunction, diabetes, and prostatitis can cause infertility. Sexually transmitted infections, which may cause male infertility. Your doctor can help you get tested and treated. Your doctor can refer you to urologist or a male fertility specialist if you need additional testing or treatments. Remember to discuss possible hereditary birth defects with your doctor. Share with her the medical history of yours and your wife's family. Get finances organized Plan a baby budget. You surely want to give the best to your child. Start planning now. Consider expenses like baby food, diapers, toys, doctor visits, clothes, and day care. This will help you in the future. And this is the perfect time as you are just in the planning phase of baby making. Take advantage of this time before the baby arrives to get things in order concerning your job, insurance and budget plan. If you and your spouse discuss and agree on expectations, goals and strategies now, you can avoid arguments on money later. After all, you don't want baby to pick up on any tension. Dump your stress Chilling out can increase your potency. So the 'go for a holiday' advice actually works. Practise regular meditation or any exercise that will help bring down your stress levels. Try reading books on fatherhood or parenting and learn tips and advices well in advance. So gear up and start preparing for the change from being the coolest dude to the coolest dad.It is your responsibility to help your partner in all possible ways and make her feel that you are equally excited and keen for having a baby.
Mother can pass stress patterns to childThe stress patterns in the mother have shown to affect the mental development of children and have been found to play a role in autism and even schizophrenia. "Pressure and stress is the common cold of the psyche." - Andrew Denton There are several studies conducted in this area of research. The results are varied and present a set of multiple issues that children can face if their mothers have been under stress when they were in the womb. In later years, these babies grow into children who have a weak mental state. They cry easily, pick the escape route in conflicts and difficult situations, are anxiety prone and may get easily bullied in social environments. Their social adjustment gets hampered due to emotional weakness. These children are not good at handling weak moments and end up being rubbed off the wrong way, time and again. It pushes them into a vicious cycle. The incapability to tackle socially stressful situations further scares them. They get bullied and become even more vulnerable. What to do? The approach is twofold. Curb the problem in the beginning. Yes, it is natural to be stressed. Pregnancy can be tough, physically as well as mentally. With the modern life, the stressors have increased and there is always so much to do in such little time. Relationships, work, food, health, hormones - there is ample to trouble you. Find a release for the tensions. The one growing inside you needs you to be happy and healthy. Do things that make you happy, keep your happiness at the top priority. Everyone around you needs to understand that. Reader, if you are the husband, parent, sibling or friend of a pregnant lady - support her, understand her and do all you can to make her smile. Do not be the one who reprimands if she is worried, be the one who takes away her worries. Pave way for a baby who is happy and ready to start a new life. Second, do what you can at the given time. The child is already here and is facing emotional adjustment issues - extend your support to him/her. Give the kid the ground to grow strong roots and stand tall, without being disturbed easily by gushes of the wind. While it is difficult to avoid stress, you can always try to handle it better, for the sake of your child.Soon-to-be mothers who go through stressful situations may be passing on the stress patterns to their babies.
Pregnancy myths bustedChances of getting pregnant each month gets increased by 50% in the women of the age of early 20's: This not right, for a women to get pregnant is not easy. When a woman is below 25 the chances of hitting baby bingo are only 20 to 25 %, while the women above 35 years of age the chances are 15%.   The baby's gender could be understood by the shape and size of the belly. It is believed that woman carrying a girl has high belly: False again. The shape of belly depends on original shape of the abdomen, amount and the distribution of the fat, strength of the abdominal muscles, the number of babies conceived and the position of the baby... but in no way possible can the shape or size of a belly give away the sex of the baby inside.   The best fertility lubricant to be used for conceiving is saliva: This is totally wrong, actually saliva is the sperm killer, most of the lubricants and massage oil are also not good for fertility, so it is better to go without using any lubricant.   Sperm production is impaired by laptops: This is true. Heat is not good for male fertility when laptops are used on laps they may generate heat and affect the fertility. So it is good to use the laptops as desktops.   The conceiving period of most of the couples is 3 months: This is not right, most of the couples take about 6 - 12 months of active efforts to conceive if they are not having any fertility problems.   There are more chances of conceiving, if you do more sex on the fertile days: This is true, the man having normal sperm count to have sex during her partners fertile days is good for conception. Having everyday sex was suggested in earlier days but anything which is done in excess is always more.   The egg can be fertilized within two days after it is released: This not true, an egg has the shelf life of only 12 to 24 hour, and the sperm have to meet with egg within that time, though it has the shelf life of 3 days or more.   Position during conception matters: This is not true, the sperms which are healthy are good swimmers, they can make you pregnant in any condition.   Eating oysters is good for getting pregnant: This is true, oysters are the good source of zinc, which is the most fertile mineral, it is also a good booster for libido, it can be used by both sexes.   Having cough medicine is good for getting pregnant: This is true, cough expectorants loosens up the cervical mucus as it does with the mucus in the chest, and the looser cervical mucus gives the sperm an easier and faster way to get pregnant. But some cough medicines contains an antihistamine that dries up all the mucus, which makes for a difficult swim for the sperms.   The sex of the baby is known by the glow on the face of the mother: This is not true, as the morning sickness of the mother is stopped, she starts eating well, the blood circulation also improves and in general the mother feels good, which gives the glow on the face. There is no relation between the glow on face and delivery of a baby.   The baby having lots of hair causes heartburn to their mother: Completely false, heartburn is the common complaint of the mother during pregnancy, this is due to reflux in oesophagus, in this the food particles come up through the food pipe and due to its acidic nature it causes heart burn. There is no relation between baby having lots of hair and heartburn.   The food intake of the pregnant woman should be doubled, for baby and the mother: This is not true, the pregnant woman, should take a balanced nutritious diets containing ample of proteins, vitamins, and minerals, small meals should eaten for every two hours rather than eating only 3 times the bulky meals.   Labor can be induced having sex during pregnancy: Not true, if the woman is physically fit during pregnancy can have sex as advised by the doctor only the position during sex should be taken care of, it should not cause discomfort to the woman.   Regular breastfeeding is a barrier for getting pregnant: Again a myth, the women can get pregnant even in the lactational ammenorrhea before the first menstrual cycle. You should always use contraception to avoid pregnancy.   Using computer during pregnancy can harm baby: This is not true, there may be backache if you continuously work for a long time on computer, but there is no direct effect of computer on the baby.   Source: What to Expect Before You're Expecting
Your bundle of joy comes with bundles of fascinating facts Blue-eyed wonder: Most babies are born blue-eyed. The melanin pigment that decides the color of the eyes is not developed at the time of birth. So the babies are born with blue/light eyes irrespective of the genetic makeup. By the time the baby is 6-7 months old, the pigments start developing and the baby's eye colour changes as per the genetic makeup of the parents. Marked for life: One in every three infant is born with a birthmark! No tears: That is true! New born babies do not shed any tears. The lacrimal duct and the tear glands are well developed but they produce just enough tears for lubrication. Actual tears start appearing after one month of age. Crawling wonders: New research has found that babies can crawl almost as soon as they are born. When left to themselves, they are quite capable of using their limbs and find their way to food i.e. the mother's breast.And we thought that they are tiny helpless creatures! Temperature sensitivity: Babies are much more sensitive to temperature changes and body heat.Though the baby can't throw off the clothes to cool down, it is smart enough to do other things. When the baby is cold, it will move around more and if it is too hot it may just lie still as if sunbathing. Touch therapy: Touch is the most highly developed sensation in babies, even in premature ones. The touch sensation develops from head to toe with the mouth being the most sensitive. No wonder they tend to put everything in their mouths. Short-sighted: Babies are short sighted at birth. Their vision is set to a limit of 8-to-12 inches. They can see people and objects clearly only if they are within this range. Brain size: The brain grows at such a rate in newborns that by the end of the first year,the brain is double the birth size and half its final size! Palmar Grasp: New born babies have a strong grip, as strong as a monkey's. The grip is so strong that if you dangle them on one hand, they can support their own weight. This probably originated from the primitive survival instinct. This strong grasp reduces after a couple of months. Taste buds: Babies have more than 10,000 taste buds situated all over the tongue and even at the roof and sides. As they grow, these extra taste buds disappear.
Anger management for your teenaged daughter - Handling difficult teenage times If one fine day you find your daughter suddenly reacting differently to a particular situation, do not be surprised, especially if she is in her teens. The outburst is beyond her control and she herself is confused by her own behavior, at times. It's important rather than scolding her for her misbehavior, one must wait for her to calm down and then speak to her regarding the incident when she is in a jolly mood. It is impossible to forgive such behavior if it repeats regularly, though. Here are some ways to deal with your daughter if she strays the limits of accepted norm for a behavior. You can seek the help of a counselor and understand why this is happening and solve her queries so that she could handle them better in the future. Why do Teenage Girls Lose Temper?By the time, the girls enter their teens they would have become aware about the social etiquettes, importance of looks, acting in an acceptable manner in social scenarios and creating a 'cool' image about themselves when they are outside their homes. So, even if they are hurt, or are angry at something, they do not let it go public, lest their 'cool' image gets shattered. However, the same anger becomes bottled up and vents itself out when they reach home. It's much like the workplace anger showing up at home. This is the place where they can behave wildly and still expect forgiveness. However, that does not mean that you should let your daughter get away with such kind of madness. After she has cooled down, you need to talk to her to find out what is bothering her or making her behave in such a manner. Probably, she may not accept that she has a problem, but you will have to find a way to reach to the root of the issue. More often girls want to be like someone in their college or peer group. They want to fit into a particular group and being unable to do so makes them nervous and distraught. Teach your daughter to believe in herself. Make her understand that she is a unique person on her own and do not need to convert herself into someone else. It may take consistent effort on your part to imbibe all these things into her mind, but you have to work hard to make her understand. Self-Control is the KeyMany young girls do not know how to solve a particular problem when they are faced with it. Apart from taking her to a good counselor, you can discuss problem solving techniques with her. Ask her to understand the situation first, put a foot backwards, relax, and then find a solution to the problem. This habit will make her probe into the problem in a better way and she will be able to handle similar situations when they occur again. You can ask her to write down the problems that are bothering her and ponder over them. You can assist her initially, but as she matures she will find her own solutions depending on her past experiences. Adolescent girls have sometimes trouble keeping their anger, rage, and fear under control and hence their problems should be handled patiently. Brainstorming SolutionsOnce she has ripped apart every aspect of the problem and has come to a brainstorming solution, advise her to write down the plan of action. For example, if she is disturbed due to a particular teacher who does not seem to like her grades, she may do well seeking help through friends who are better in that subject, or for that matter, a bad remark by someone in a group might unsettle her, thereby venting her anger at home. With restraint on your part, make her understand that anger will only block her process to think or find a solution. If you teach her to find answers for the problems in a calm manner, your teenage daughter will surely learn to control her anger and behave normally as she grows into an adult.
Mood disordersMood disorder is a category of mental health problems, and it includes all types of depression and bipolar disorder. The cause of mood disorder is not well known. Endorphins in brain are responsible for positive moods. The neurotransmitters regulate endorphins. Depression and other mood disorders are caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain. Life events such as unwanted changes in life may also contribute to a depressed mood. Mood disorders are inherited. Children, adolescents, or adults who have a parent with a mood disorder have a greater chance of also having a mood disorder. Symptoms: Prolonged feeling of sadness Helpless feeling Low self-esteem Intense guilt Suicidal thoughts Loss of interest in daily activities Difficulty with relationships Disturbed sleep Change in appetite or weight Low energy Inability in concentrating Inability to make decisions Frequent physical complaints (i.e., headache, stomach ache, fatigue) Threats of running away from home Hypersensitivity to failure or rejection Irritability Aggressive behaviour Hostility In mood disorders, these feelings appear more intense than what a person may normally feel from time to time. Treatment Psychotherapy: It is focused on changing the individual's distorted views of themselves and the environment around them, working through difficult relationships, and identifying stress triggers in their environment and how to avoid them. Family therapy: Families play a vital supportive role in any treatment process. Antidepressant medications: Medications in combination with psychotherapy has shown to be very effective in the treatment of depression.
Are you a chocoholic? : Dealing with chocolate addictionSerotonin is a hormone that produces relaxed and happy mental state. This hormone is activated when you consume sweet and high-fat foods. Apart from serotonin, chocolate also contains phenylethylamine which produces feelings of enthusiasm and attraction. The obsession with chocolate is marked by intense craving for it, loss of control over its consumption, and continual consumption despite negative repercussions. Is chocoholism a true addiction? Chocolate is a manifestation of desires and there is also a resistance to it. This cultural phenomenon of mysterious romance and excitement increases the attractiveness of chocolate. Apart from these, advertising and grocery shop displays also connect chocolate with an object of desire, thus triggering its need in times of emotional stress. Though the symptoms shown by those who are addicted to chocolate is much like those who are misusing substance, it is generally not considered an addiction in a true sense, as this is an acquired obsession (through culture and media) than due to bodily changes. Foods like broccoli also contain the mood-altering ingredients, even in higher concentrations. The compulsion with chocolate is considered to be owing to its texture, sweetness, and aroma. Here are a few steps to overcome your chocolate addiction: Step 1- Symptom AcknowledgmentWhile it is not considered a true addiction by many psychologists, most agree that the experience of compulsion towards chocolate is much like the ones towards drugs. It is important to diagnose and check your condition. You need to have a chocolate bite everyday. Generally, a particular time is chosen, like after lunch when your mind is a little discharged and you need that small bit of kick to arouse yourself back to normalcy. If you do not have access to chocolate, you feel anxious and find ways to get hold of a chocolate bar. Step 2- Know The ConsequencesIf you recognize that you are suffering from chocolate addiction, then be aware of the problems which it causes. It will lead to a series of bites where there would be no nutritional value and only fat and sugar induced by the chocolate. You would be needy for the chocolate, and thus, your emotions will be ruled by a bar of sweet. You might get headaches after eating chocolate, but you would still eat it anyway. You might hide and consume chocolate, owing to the disapproval of your companions. Your health will gradually deteriorate with constant burden on your pocket to keep a stash of chocolate around. Step 3- Identify The CauseChocolate is a response to a root problem. For this purpose, you have to carefully observe the nature of your chocolate consumption. Note the triggers to your choco-pangs. Do you eat chocolate to lift your mood when you are sad or upset? Have you been on diet for too long, and because of suppressing the cravings, you see the chocolate bar as 'just one time' deal which is indefinitely extended? Maybe you feel excited and urge to eat chocolate just by thinking about chocolate. Lastly, you might be bored and want to while away your time. In the act of busying yourself, you find yourself munching on multiple bars of chocolate. Did you know that the impact of chocolate on the human psyche is greatly shaped by the idea of chocolate being a representative of romance and desire? Majority of young adults believe that chocolate is a symbol of love and the tendency to get addicted to it is strengthened with the hormones it produces. To avoid chocolate addiction, make sure you work on your eating pattern carefully. Step 4- Empathetic Path to RecoveryOnce you have found the root cause of your addiction, work on your problems gradually and with empathy. Don't push yourself to completely give it up unless you have been medically advised to go off it completely. Step 5- The Emotional EaterIf you consume chocolate when sad, find alternatives to feel better. For instance, some people listen to music or love to play with dogs to feel relaxed. Find your non-chocolaty solution to emotional problems. The best way would be to explore the cause of sadness and communicate with your friend or companion about it. This will nullify the possibility to there being any other dependency shift from chocolate. Step 6- The Boredom EaterIf you find yourself nibbling on chocolate when you are bored, then first become conscious of the act. After having eaten chocolate for boredom for months or years, one has to remind oneself about the act. So, look for other ways to spend your time. Pick up a hobby you like and pursue it. If you are really craving chocolate, then talk to someone who knows about your addiction and can divert your attention. Step 7- Dietary ChangesMake sure you shift to a balanced diet full of whole grain, fresh fruits and vegetables as well as water. You may also include nuts and dry fruits in your diet as well. Step 8- Scheduled Chocolate ConsumptionMake a resolution that you would only have chocolate once in three days (initially) and then slowly taper it off to only special occasions. Step 9- Withdrawal SymptomsWhen you are reducing the amount of chocolate you eat daily, you will undergo withdrawal signs. This will include headache, mood swings, depression, and in severe cases, flu. Be strong and do not give in to the symptoms. Busy yourself with other activities and do not concentrate on chocolate. Step 10- Sleeping, Eating and ExercisingThere are three prime components of healthy living: eating a balanced diet, drinking at least 8 to 10 glasses of water daily, getting adequate sleep (7 to 8 hours), and performing moderate exercise daily for 30 to 45 minutes. Focus on healthy living and build a harmonious relationship with any food item that you consume. Chocolate is a manifestation of desires and there is also a resistance to it. This cultural phenomenon of mysterious romance and excitement increases the attractiveness of chocolate. Apart from these, advertising and grocery displays also connect comfort in modern living with chocolate, thus triggering its need in times of emotional stress.
Fair skin - A modern obsession!History of Complexion - Complexion generally refers to the natural color, appearance, and texture of the skin, particularly on the face. Originated from the late Latin term 'complexio', complexion is traditionally referred to the temperament which was determined on the basis of the proportion of qualities of hot, wet, dry, and cold in the human body. It was believed that the body carried these qualities depending on the climate in which the individual lived. Thus, a person living in a cold climate was seen to have 'colder and moister' complexion and so on. The biological facet of complexion mentioned below tells us how the skin adapts its color according to the climate it finds itself in. Moreover, it was also seen to represent the character of the person into different categories like melancholic, choleric, sanguine, and phlegmatic. Complexion was the center which reflected the qualities which make a balanced person. Skin color is determined by the presence of pigment melanin. Located in the outer skin layer called epidermis, it is produced by cells called melanocytes. These cells contain receptors which are photosensitive and which detect the ultraviolet (UV) radiation from sun and other factors. In response to this detection, they give out melanin after exposure. The Biology of Complexion - The complexion of the body ranges from very dark brown of Africa and Aboriginal Australia to pink with yellowish hue of the Northern Europeans. In actuality, there is no skin which is black, yellow, red or white in absolute - it is generally a hue of many colors with one dominating over the other. Our biological actuality is not reflected by the words we use for our complexion these days. Skin color is determined by the presence of pigment melanin. This pigment is under the control of 6 genes. Both complexions of dark and light have melanin. Spatially located in the outer skin layer (called epidermis), it is produced by cells called melanocytes. These cells contain receptors which are photosensitive and which detect the ultraviolet (UV) radiation from sun and other factors. In response to this detection, they give out melanin after exposure. Those in tropical latitudes, where there is highest exposure to sun, have darker skin which contains melanin acting as a protective biological envelope against UV radiation. This protective layer prevents sunburns and other damages including those that could increase the risk of melanoma. The UV radiation reaching the earth increases during summers and reduces in winters. The skin adapts to this change by tanning - tanning indicates that your skin is increasing the size and amount of melanin grains to protect against the UV. Thus, your skin color is essentially determined by genetics and the geography of the place you live in. Biological Fact to Social Conclusion - We generally mold the biological fact of adaptability of our skin into a social meter of beauty. The complexion is a biological wonder of the nature which allows the skin to absorb enough vitamin D, prevent many illnesses like anemia, osteoporosis, and rickets determined by its environment. Thus, to claim that a certain skin color is superior to others is to only deny the reality of biology related to our skin and body, thus falling into the fallacy of unjustifiably jumping from a biological fact to a social conclusion. The health of your skin must be the starting point to declaring its beauty, not a presupposed social standard unrepresentative of the reality of the body. Taking Care of Your Skin - Every skin color is determined by its biological framework placed within the environmental setup. It is essential to take care of your skin to ensure that it is healthy and well taken care of : Make sure you eat a well-balanced and nutritious diet. Stay away from junk and heavily processed food items. Sleep for at least 7-8 hours daily to ensure that your skin gets enough time to recharge its mechanism. Drink loads of water to keep your skin hydrated. Go through the daily care routine: cleanse, tone, moisturize, and exfoliate. Use rose water to remove your make-up and ensure that you do not go to bed with make-up on. Keep dirt and germs away from your skin. The best way is to avoid touching your face with hands when you are out. A clean environment is the fertile ground for a healthy skin. Make sure you wash your pillows, their covers and clean the house regularly to keep away pollutants. Stress is one of the main causes of your skin's health withering. Your skin is the outer reflection of your inner mental state. Work towards mental detoxification to cheer up your skin and body.
5 Mistakes yoga beginners makeYoga is a science that has been developed by the ancient Indian sages after a lot of research and study. That is why yoga is difficult to master immediately and one needs a lot of practice to achieve every posture or asana in the perfect manner. So, it is very important to learn the yogic techniques from an expert and one must avoid performing yoga on your own, at least in the initial stages to ensure that you do not suffer from any physical injuries by wrongly straining or stretching your muscles during practice. Yoga can benefit you only if you perform the asanas according to right techniques. Hence, you should try to avoid mistakes right from the beginning. Here are the five most common mistakes people make while performing yoga as beginners: Learning How to Breath Inhalation and exhalation, some say is the most important process that you need to control while performing yoga. While trying to achieve certain asanas, you have to hold your breath for a while and because of this, your muscle fibers are deprived of oxygen for that time. And one needs to do this while holding one's body in that particular posture. With less strength in your muscles, there are chances that you may fall down or get injured. Hence, as a beginner, when you do not have proper control over your breath, it is best to inhale in short breaths, instead of going for the full belly breaths. Just as you slowly inhale, remember to exhale slowly as well, so that the rhythm of the yogic posture is not disturbed. Do not push Yourself Too Hard Most of the contemporary exercises are based on the principle of 'more pain, more gain'. These exercises tell you to stretch more and push harder to get the best results from your workout routine. However, in the case of yoga, the opposite holds true. If you push yourself beyond your limits to attain a particular posture in yoga, you might actually end up straining and injuring your muscles instead. . So, when you are doing yoga come what may, do not push yourself beyond your natural limits. Do Not Compare Some people are naturally gifted with super-flexibility, while the rest of us may not achieve it despite practicing yoga for years together. Each of us has a different type of body and hence, you should not try to compete with those who are highly flexible, especially, if you are trying yoga for the first time or after a long time. You must give your body some time to loosen up its rigidness and become flexible enough. Trying to compare your body's abilities with others and forcefully pushing yourself to perform postures, just to match up, will hurt you eventually. Where to Place the Mat? The best place to put the mat is at the back of your yoga class, especially if you are new to yoga. If you keep your mat at the front, you will become more conscious and will never be able to concentrate on the asana. Instead, if you are at the back, you will always have the front row to follow, just in case you miss the instructions by the instructor. Go easy on the Food! Yoga postures can be intense and if you go into class with a full belly, you will, most definitely find it difficult and uncomfortable to perform the asanas. The key is to eat about an hour before and almost half the size of your usual portion; so that you can perform the asanas comfortably and get the exact fuel necessary for performing them.
Common causes of allergic reactionsAllergic reactions, most of the times, do not warrant immediate medical attention. But never ignore or take any allergic reaction lightly! Allergic reactions include itching or a puffy face or swollen red blotches all over your body or a fit of sneezing.  If we know what allergies have, we can avoid the triggers. So, here is a list Soaps and detergents: Are your palms are all rough and peeling off in patches and it doesn't seem to go away? Time to do a check on the dish-washing soaps and the detergents you may be using. Most of the brands contain harsh chemicals that burn while you use them. Medically known as Contact Allergic Dermatitis, this is one of the most common allergic reactions. Artificial Jewellery: Even the best looking jewellery can, at times, trigger allergic reactions. Another common type of Contact Allergic Dermatitis, this happens when you wear artificial jewellery. Most of the jewellery of this variety contains Nickel which is the main cause for this type of allergic reaction. Clothes: Clothes can be a cause for allergic reaction. While synthetic fibres like nylon and polyester are common factors, at times, the chemicals used in the dyeing can also be a reason for allergy. Add to it the perspiration and the constant friction between the skin and the clothes, and you have a severe allergic reaction guaranteed! Latex: Latex is also a very common cause for allergy. Commonly found in condoms, gloves and certain medical devices, allergy to latex can range from minor itching and redness, to a serious life-threatening anaphylactic reaction. Milk and milk products: The symptoms for this source of allergy include loose motions and stomach, among other things. Medically called as Lactose intolerance, it occurs in people who do not have the necessary enzymes in their bodies to digest milk and milk products. Food allergies: Peanuts, brinjal, fish etc can also trigger allergic reactions. Food reactions are specific to individuals. One may suffer from an allergic reaction to almost any kind of foodstuff. Beauty products: From shampoos and creams to nail paints and lipsticks, every cosmetic you use is a potential allergic trigger. Molds: These are microscopic fungi found in damp and moist places.. Allergic reactions to molds are pretty common and seasonal. Cockroach: The proteins secreted by the glands and the saliva of the cockroach can be allergic to humans. Sneezing, itchy and watery eyes are common symptoms. Insects: Insect stings can lead to burning and stinging pain with redness and a slight swelling around the bite/sting area. In some people though, insect bite/sting proves to be life threatening. Symptoms as severe as difficult breathing, rapid pulse, severe drop in blood pressure and swelling of face and throat may occur!
Stinky feet? Learn why!Most of us have experienced a bad smelly foot at least once in our lives. We all have that one friend or relative who has such smelly feet that he can clear off a room as soon as he kicks off his shoes! With more than 250,000 sweat glands in each foot, the feet are the most highly sweating parts of the body. What causes this bad smell? The feet contain thousands of sweat glands. During warm days or when you wear socks and tight shoes, the sweating increases in due proportion. The resulting sweat does not find an outlet and starts accumulating in the spaces available and this warm and moist area breeds bacteria. The bacteria start feasting on your sweat and dead skin. They digest their food and release the waste products. These waste products are toxic organic acids that cause the feet to smell so bad. About 10 to 15% of people suffer from this horribly bad smell. Why? This is because their feet are extra sweaty and become a home ground for certain bacteria called as Micrococcus sedantarius. Along with stinky organic acids, the bacteria produce volatile sulphur compounds. Sulphur compounds are powerful and extremely awful smelling almost like a dirty rotten egg. Teenage years also see extra amounts of sweating on the feet. Medical conditions like Hyperhidrosis can also make your feet sweat more. If you are suffering from a fungal infection of the foot, then rest assured that your feet will smell horrible. Smelly feet can be an embarrassing problem. It puts everyone in a spot. Hence, foot hygiene is important to avoid smelly feet. Always wash and dry your feet well every morning. Dab some antiperspirant powder on your feet and between the toes to soak the perspiration. Never wear the same shoes for more than 2 days in a row. Wear a fresh pair of socks daily. Keep your feet exposed to fresh air. Avoid tight-fitting shoes. Use an antibacterial soap to wash your feet if you have smelly feet. Visit your doctor if simple home measures do not prove very effective. Excessive sweating is often considered the cause for foot odor. This is not true. Sweating in itself is harmless; it is the bacteria that grow there that are responsible for the awful odor.
Is sex linked to self esteem?Man is a curious creature, full of quirks and contradictions. Sexual intercourse, something that most people consider an intimate and private experience, is spoken about in hushed tones and often, with some discomfort. We don't reveal or talk about our sexual desires, as readily we discuss our salary packages or food habits. This is quite ironic seeing how sex is an important gauge for a person's self esteem and also an indicator of his/her social desirability. The very thing that we do under covers, we somehow choose to "keep under cover". The Link between Sex and Self Esteem: Self esteem is an important factor that determines the mental & physical well-being of an individual. All of us have a craving to be understood, liked and appreciated; and these form the equivalent of our basic needs on the inverted pyramid- Food, clothing and shelter. For a human being to flourish and prosper, consumable food, without the mental food of appreciation, is not enough; and sexual intercourse or an intimacy with the opposite sex, is one way of validating that need. Sex therefore, ceases to be just a physical need instilled by nature for the perpetuation of the species, but goes into the larger emotional cum psychological dimension of self actualization and realization. Though some of us might be embarrassed to broach the topic of 'whether or not we are getting enough', the truth is that every human seeks to achieve his sexual potential, even while he or she might, not be aware of it. Most of us have the ability to get the foods matching our taste preferences onto our plates, but with sex, this could be a little difficult, since sex, is a complex subject with a lot of social, moral and religious links. The truth is evident in the number of marriages (the very cornerstones of civil society) that fail on the basis of sexual compatibility, either by setting unrealistic sexual expectations or by not owning up to, or even identifying, one's sexual needs. This has repercussions on the psyche and self-esteem of a person, and this is especially true in the case of men in particular, as they may feel completely inferior for not being able to attract a sexual partner matching his desires. In some people, this also leads to a case of self-loathing, for having sexual needs which a partner doesn't understand, or much worse, needs which are considered taboo and sinful (Homosexuality, Anal Sex, Group Sex, Fetishes, etc.) These complex emotions can wreak  havoc on a person's self-esteem, by creating severe internal conflicts and serious self-doubts. Now socially, sex can either liberate a person, or hold him prisoner. At times, the unfulfilled needs may get repressed and banished to the shadows, only to be played out later, in the form of sexual adventurism and crime. Just one look at the sexual crimes in our society today, and we can clearly understand just how healthy our collective self esteem is! The very society that frowns upon prostitution, is actually responsible for creating it, though everybody would like to pretend otherwise. The crux of the matter is that "sex" and "self esteem" are closely related; and one should not shy away from addressing any issues one might face regarding one's sexuality. Physical love is necessary for the survival of a relationship and one needs to make time and efforts to successfully create one's own sexual space. The positive effects of a good sex life can be seen in an increased work productivity, fewer illnesses and an increase in one's overall efficiency. Some people are haunted by sexual guilt and confusion and when they keep it all locked up, they suffer from unexplained physical pains and feel 'down in the dumps' mentally. Another problem with appreciation from the opposite sex, is the addiction to  external validation. Some people feel utterly worthless until they receive positive feedback about their looks or abilities on a regular basis. This can be downright devastating, as in these cases, there is a great dependence on external factors for one to feel good. While no one denies the "feel good factor" of sexual appreciation, it is up to each one of us, to decide just how much of control one must be giving to external factors, to determine our personal self-esteem. The appreciation may be theirs, but the esteem is entirely of the self and only the self can decide how much of appreciation and sex is enough.
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