Friday, March 27, 2009

Things You Need To Know About Food Allergies

Food allergies or food intolerance occur when people have an unpleasant reaction to something they ate. Food allergies are the result of the immune system mistakenly recognizing certain foods as dangerous substances and starts responding against them.

Nearly everyone is affected with this at some point in their lives. Symptoms can be as mild as skin rash, vomiting and diarrhea or as serious as anaphylaxis, which constricts the airways and requires immediate medical attention.

According to studies, food-based allergic reactions start at the early age of life, wherein some of the effects can be resolved over time. However, other food reactions acquired in infancy typically persist through life.

Here is the list of the eight common foods which cause almost 90 percent of food allergies:
  1. Peanuts
  2. Eggs
  3. Milk
  4. Shellfish
  5. Wheat
  6. Tree nuts (walnuts, pecans, etc.)
  7. Soy
  8. Fish
At this point, no studies can conclude why certain children develop allergies; what is known is that heredity is a factor: when you have food allergies, your child will most likely have them as well.

Exposing your children to different solid foods may boost their tolerance later in life. But remember: when you begin to introduce solid foods to your toddler, do so one at a time. This way, you'll find out which foods he/she can tolerate and which are rejected.

And if you’re an adult suffering from food allergies, take note of the following:
  • Strictly avoid the food you are allergic to, including any related products.
  • Diligently read food labels (hidden ingredients, particularly those containing wheat and peanuts, can be lurking anywhere). The Food and Drug Administration requires that at least the top eight allergens must be clearly stated on food labels).
  • Let the server in a restaurant know you absolutely cannot have certain ingredients.
  • For those with severe food allergies, remember to always carry a self-injectable epinephrine (often called an Epipen) in case of emergency.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Breakfast for better health

Skipping breakfast is very common nowadays. This is because of the fast faced lifestyle and having a wrong idea that breakfast is not as important as the other meal of the day.

There are studies that show young and adults specifically the teens that skipped breakfast are more likely to be obese. They are the ones who tend to eat less healthy during the day and exercised less.

Breakfast is as important as the other meals of the day. As the day starts you need something to fill your empty stomach while you were asleep and something to charge your energy. But there is more to it than not skipping breakfast. Breakfast should be healthy. So if you’re planning breakfast you should avoid the following:

  • Doughnuts
  • Cereals
  • Fruit juice
  • Waffles and pancakes
  • Bagels and toast (even whole grain organic types)
  • ALL cereals (even whole grain organic types)
It is ideal to have healthy food during breakfast or in any meal. And according to experts it is better that you should avoid whole grain breads and cereals because it rapidly breakdown sugar and stimulating insulin production. He also said that eggs, juiced fruits and vegetables are ideal for breakfast.

You must take note that in preparing meals like breakfast for you and your family you must always consider the nutritional type. And by doing this you will enjoy a healthy lifestyle.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

How Safe Are Your Personal Care Products and Cosmetics?

Most personal care products like shampoos, conditioners, cosmetics and make-ups are used by millions every day. But do you know how they are made and are you familiar with the ingredients they contain?

Studies show that most cosmetic companies add synthetic ingredients to their products that may cause cancer or reproductive damage over the years of sustained used. According an EWG (Environmental Working Group) survey, more than a quarter of women in the total population and one of every 100 men are using at least 15 different personal care products per day, which means greater exposure to toxic ingredients.

Based from the EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetic Safety Database, here are some of the toxic ingredients that you should avoid:

1. Mercury

This heavy metal is known as a possible human carcinogen and a human reproductive or developmental toxin. Used in some eye drops, ointments and mascaras (it’s listed as "thimerosal" on labels).

2. Placenta

Placenta produces hormones like progesterone and estrogen, which may disrupt your body's normal hormone functions and could lead to breast cancer and other health problems. Found in some hair relaxers, moisturizers and toners.

3. Petrochemicals

These byproducts of crude oil may be labeled as petrolatum, mineral oil or paraffin. They are suspected or known carcinogens and may also break down into toxic products such as dioxane and are used in some hair relaxers, shampoos, anti-aging creams, mascaras, perfumes, foundations, lipsticks and lip balms.

4. Phthalates

Phthalates are used in some nail polishes, fragrances and hair sprays. It is a plasticizing chemical classified as a probable reproductive or developmental toxin and endocrine disrupter. Two phthalates, dibutyl and diethylhexyl have been banned in the European Union.

5. Hydroquinone

This ingredient is a possible carcinogen, a probable reproductive or developmental toxin and endocrine disrupter that may leave permanent black-blue lesions on your skin. Hydroquinone is an ingredient in some skin lightening products and moisturizers.

Now that you have been warned of the hidden dangers of personal care products, it is advisable to read labels before buying anything to check if the ingredients are all-natural and safe. Here are some safe and gentle ingredients:

• Aloe Vera
• Plant extracts
• Essential Oils
• Organic oils

Your skin is the biggest organ in your body. Watch what you put on it in the same way that you watch what you eat.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

How to Take Smart Risks

The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing and becomes nothing. – Leo Buscaglia

Do you want to start your own business or invest in the stock market? Are you considering offers for jobs overseas? Or are you planning on asking your best friend or officemate on a date to confess your true feelings?

All these things involve taking risks. If you want to get the things you want and get ahead in life, you usually have to take a risk. After all, with nothing risked, there’s nothing gained.

Taking risks is something normal because in anything you do, you’re taking some sort of a risk, voluntarily and involuntarily. If you get on an airplane, there’s a chance that it may crash and get you killed. If you’re walking in the street, there’s a one-in-a-million chance that you might get hit by a car or struck by lightning.

Taking risks can be scary at first because there are negative connotations to it, like danger and possible loss. But of course, risks do have a positive side. Without risks, you can’t experience a big return on an investment. Or a future trip down the aisle all because you weren’t afraid to ask your partner out on that first date.

As part of skill building and career advice, you have to learn how to take risks because taking or not taking a risk can be either be the smartest or the stupidest thing you can do with your life.

But all risks are not equal. The smartest risks are the ones where the benefits outweigh the downsides.

So how do you know if you’re making a smart risk?

Knowing What You Want Is the Key to Taking Smart Risks

Many people are living their lives just to please other people, or are having the kind of life they think they should have, rather than living the life they really want.

Business coach and psychologist Gary Leboff says that if you don’t make an effort to get what you want, life probably won’t turn out the way you want it to. The key, then, is to know what you want first and start taking the risks that you think would get you there.

If you want to improve your social life, you should ask your friends to introduce you to other people, or you could join a new group or club. If you need more money, then maybe it’s about time to ask your boss for a raise.

Your initial risks don't need to be life-changing in magnitude. Take it slow to find the confidence you need for bigger risks in the future. That confidence will come, sooner or later, because the more risks you take, the better your judgment becomes.

Here are some things to remember that will help you make smart risks:

  • Don't risk everything. You should only risk something that won't leave you financially ruined, emotionally scarred or physically disabled in case things go horribly wrong.
  • Ask for what you want. You’ll be surprised that more often than not, you will get it.
  • Take positive risks. You should not put yourself or others at risk of physical or emotional harm.
  • Be open to failure. You should be at peace with the possibility of failure because it’s part of taking risks. Learn from your failures by finding out where you went wrong so you can apply what you’ve learned when you take your next risk.
  • Start taking risks right away. Get started on small risks like trying a new type of food, putting on clothes that are not part of your usual style, getting a different haircut or going to some place you've never been before.
  • Stop worrying about what others may think. It’s your life, your risk and your gain. People, including those close to you, will always have different views. What’s important is you know what you want.
  • If there's nothing to lose, don’t hesitate to take the risk.
Also, these six signs will tell you when it’s NOT a good idea to take a risk. Forget about risking something if:
  • There's a good chance you could lose everything
  • You’re putting so much on the line with only a little to gain
  • Too many factors are out of your control
  • You feel that the odds are against you
  • It’s impossible to fix the outcome if things go wrong
  • If there’s little time to evaluate or prepare before having to take the risk
If you’re still unsure of taking that first risk, keep in mind that there’s always a risk involved in order to get what you want.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Younger Looking Face is Double Chin Free

Double chins are an unfortunate part of the aging process. As you age, the skin around your chin and neck looses elasticity due to the forces of gravity and time. The accumulation of double chins or excess skin in the face is also caused by genetics (heredity), poor posture and excess calorie intake.

Your double chin could be something you inherited from your father or mother. You may also be predisposed to a double chin due to the shape of your neck and jaw.
Studies show that when you process more calories in your body, you also hasten the aging process. The signs of aging – a little bit of a belly, more weight in the butt and that crease below your chin – are usually more noticeable if a person is overweight and processing more calories.

One thing is for sure: double chins certainly don’t give you any points in beauty and confidence.

Nowadays, there are a lot of ways that can help you get rid of double chins, including liposuction and plastic surgery, which can be painful and don’t come cheap. But you don’t need to put your health at risk with these procedures because you can get rid of your double chin naturally and safely.

Losing weight and burning up your excess fats are the keys in getting rid of your double chin. You can tone your neckline and chin by:

  • Have a regular exercise routine. Burn the calories you consume by signing up for a gym and doing aerobic and anaerobic exercises as soon as possible.

  • Watching what you eat. Monitor and regulate your caloric intake. Eliminate or at least limit the amount of “empty” calories you consume like soda, candy, cookies and chips. Avoid processed carbs like white sugar and white flour because they easily turn into fat.

Here are other tips that will help you improve your appearance and make your double chin disappear:

  • Stand up straight.
  • Good body posture can make you look slimmer and more confident.
  • Change your hairstyle.
  • Choose a hairstyle that can remove attention from your chin and make you look slimmer
  • Accessorize wisely.
  • Wear tops that can remove attention from your chin but emphasizes your other assets.
  • Exercise your chin.
  • Believe it or not there is an exercise exclusive of your chin, focusing on muscle called platysma in which can firm your chin.