Health Benefits Of Herbal Tea

Author: John Morris

Herbal teas have long been associated with good health. Drinking such teas offers curative and preventive properties, with the practice now common worldwide after being limited initially to the orient.

Herb-based teas are now being recommended by medical practitioners as an integral part of a daily health regimen. Another indication of how popular the beverage has become is that it is currently the second most-consumed drink in the world after water.

1. Camellia Sinensis

An evergreen that works as the basic source, producing green, black and oolong teas depending on the processing approach. Oolong teas are semi-fermented, while the popular black tea uses fermented leaves and the green tea uses unfermented leaves. Teas made from the plant contain polyphenols - a bioflavonoid type that have anti-viral, anti-cancer and anti-bacterial properties.

2. Antioxidants

The main positive association linking health and teas is that infusions from the herbal drink offer high antioxidant content - the key factor in eliminating or preventing toxins from building up in the body. This detoxifying effect is needed, as toxins cause physical or mental diseases. Toxin accumulation can damage human cells and lead to cancers, and induce various forms of stress as the body is weakened. Tea has also been found to lower the incidence of stroke and heart disease, and surpasses many fruits and vegetables in terms of the antioxidant effect. In addition, the antioxidants in herbal tea work on particular body parts. This focused cleansing effect is not achieved through other methods - some need a specific and additional action to flush out body toxins.

3. It Works!

Thus, the health effect is based on science and not on any mysterious or magical theory. This scientific basis has also spurred research laboratories to pursue efforts in discovering a herbal remedy for life-threatening conditions and diseases. Despite this optimism, consumers must note that herbal teas remain primarily a supporting solution to traditional drugs and treatment for various ailments. Since the benefits cover all age brackets, a good number of herbal teas have become established for both common conditions and serious or chronic cases. The common cold or a congested chest can be treated with cinnamon, rosehip or hyssop-based blends. Stomach ailments can be relieved using ginger, cardamom and chamomile. Damiana, licorice, and motherwort have been effective for menstrual-related problems in women, while rice and raspberry are diarrhea solutions.

4. Health Benefits

Burdock, hawthorn, and nettle are used for blood- and blood pressure-related cases. Herbals such as valerian and St John's Wort help relieve individuals suffering from stress or some other mental or emotional problem. Yarrow and lemon balm help strengthen the digestive system. An individual with altitude sickness will feel better after a blend with mate de coca. Okinawa natives believe that longevity is improved by drinking hibiscus, which is often mixed with rosehip. It should be noted that herbal teas actually use ingredients such as seeds or roots, fresh or dried flowers and leaves. These plant parts are either placed in boiling water, or allowed to steep after the water is poured over them. The tea can then be served after remnants are strained and the flavor is adjusted to taste.

Despite these extensive health benefits from consumption, care should still be taken before any individual drinks herbal tea, which is also referred to as herbal infusion, ptisan or tisane. The basic tea combination involves dried herb, flower or fruit and boiling water. Of these ingredients, consumers must remember that not all herbs can be used to make tea. This means finding out to ensure that the herb to be mixed into the drink is safe for consumption.

5. Take Caution

This cautious stance is one supported by the US Food and Drug Administration. Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition toxicologist Sara Henry noted that the impact of different concentrations of the drink in consumers could not be accurately predicted. The agency has given its approval only for a few herbs and spices as part of flavorings due to limited data on other herbs. Natural products chemist Sam Page adds that a high number of toxicity cases reported to the FDA unit involved individuals who brewed home-grown herbs and had limited experience and knowledge on the subject. In addition, research indicates that the anti-oxidant and other health benefits from drinking tea can be achieved only if an individual consumes several cups on a daily basis - a practice that ironically may actually be detrimental to health due to the beverage's caffeine content.

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Top 5 Widespread Yoga Myths Exposed

Author: Anmol Mehta

It is not surprising to those of us who are long time yoga practitioners that the popularity of this profound spiritual science is now exploding on a world wide scale.

Unfortunately though some of the authenticity and truths about yoga are being lost and some myths are creeping in with regard to what yoga is and how it is to be practiced. In this article I will look to clear up what I find to be the top 5 myths about yoga.

Top 5 Myths About Yoga:

1. Yoga is a Form of Physical Exercise:

This is perhaps the most common view of yoga. That it is a form of physical exercise. This certainly needs to be clarified and I am going to provide some details about true yoga practice in order to do this.

Yoga is actually has 8 parts to it, with the physical aspect being just 1. These 8 parts, include yoga dos, yoga don'ts, physical exercises (asana), breathing exercises, sense control, concentration, meditation and divine union.

So you can see from above that although the physical aspect of yoga, which is called asana, is an important part of yoga, yoga as a whole is certainly more that just a series of postures and movements. Yoga is essentially a spiritual science whose objective is to still the mind of thoughts, so that the truth of Oneness hidden behind the waves of the mind can be clearly seen and embraced.

2. Yoga is a Religion:

The other extreme and incorrect view on yoga is that is it a religion. Commonly yoga is considered part of Hindu religion, but yoga is not a religion. It is a time tested spiritual science with the goal of revealing the true nature of reality. As indicated above, yoga practice is a step by step process with the end goal of calming down the thought waves in our mind and thus prevent them from distorting the truth.

3. To Practice Yoga You Must be Vegetarian:

There is a notion floating around that in order to practice yoga you must not eat meat and be a vegetarian. This is not true. Although there are tremendous benefits to being vegetarian and this is being more and more validated by the mainstream medical community, there is no requirement of vegetarianism in order to practice yoga.

One point I would like to add here is that, vegetarianism is consistent with the non-violence which yoga advocates and it certainly would be to your benefit to reduce meat intake, nevertheless, you don't have to be vegetarian in order to be a great yogi.

4. You Need to be Initiated by a Guru:

I have also come across this notion that many believe you need to be initiated and have a guru in order to learn and practice yoga. This is not true. According to yoga, the true guru is within and although it would be to your benefit to learn yoga from an accomplished teacher, this is not a requirement.

5. You Have to be Flexible to do Yoga:

Not so. No doubt yoga will improve your flexibility, along with your strength, balance and overall health, but in order to practice yoga you do not have to be flexible. Yoga is designed to be practiced by all.

Different bodies have different degrees of flexibility and in this case one size does not fit all. For most of the complex yoga posture which require great flexibility to do, there are plenty of modifications which allow you to get the same benefits for those who are less flexible. In fact one of the original reasons I took up yoga because I was not flexible and wanted to improve this aspect of my physical dimension.


So there you have the top 5 myths about yoga. Essentially, what these myths do is prevent people from taking up this wonderful science. So if you feel you will have to change faiths, find gurus, stop eating meat or are too inflexible to take up yoga practice, you are wrong. Don't pass up the wonderful opportunity to learn and practice this amazing science, which helps you discover your true divine and eternal nature.

About the Author:

Anmol Mehta is modern Yoga & Meditation master. His massive Guided Zen Meditation blog offers the ultimate Meditation Techniques Guide and free Yoga to Detox & Cleanse Your Body.

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How to Become a Vegetarian

Author: peterhutch
There are as many reasons for becoming vegetarian as there are vegetarians; it's a highly personal and individual decision to make.

But in a survey conducted on behalf of The Vegetarian Society the majority of people said that they gave up meat and fish because they did not morally approve of killing animals, or because they objected to the ways in which animals are kept, treated and killed for food.

With the growing awareness of the importance of healthy food, many people are also becoming vegetarian because it matches the kind of low fat, high fibre diet recommended by dieticians and doctors. Concern about the environment is another factor as people become more aware of the effect raising animals for their meat is having on the environment. Or you may be concerned about wasting world food resources by using land to raise animals for meat instead of growing crops that can feed more people directly.

Being vegetarian presents currently a big difficulty:

Since vegetarian diet is the most suitable human being, it ought to be pleasant, easy and joyful for us. However, people who try to transit to vegetarianism experience big difficulties instead. Several days of strict vegetarian diet would surely wake up a hungry beast of prey within you.

Avoiding meat is one of the best and simplest ways to cut down your fat consumption. Modern farm animals are deliberately fattened up to increase profits. Eating fatty meat increases your chances of having a heart attack or developing cancer. Every minute of every working day, thousands of animals are killed in slaughter-houses. Pain and misery are common. In the US alone, 500,000 animals are killed for meat every hour. There are millions of cases of food poisoning recorded every year. The vast majority are caused by eating meat. Meat contains absolutely nothing - no proteins, vitamins or minerals - that the human body cannot obtain perfectly happily from a vegetarian diet.

Consider the reasons for becoming vegetarian. These might include moral or ethical reasons, religious reasons, health reasons, environmental reasons or a combination of any of these. Get some vegetarian cookbooks and find some vegetarian recipes that interest you. Take a look around supermarkets, food stores and health food shops and see the variety of vegetarian food that is available. Do some research. Read up on vegetarian nutrition and vegetarianism in general. There is plenty of information on the internet and in books. Tell parents or a significant other about your choice. Make sure you have some solid research to back you up, as some people are very resistant to the idea of vegetarianism because of misunderstandings related to health, evolution or religion. When informing your family of your dietary choice, stay calm and polite, even if they find it difficult to accept.

Being Vegetarian - For whatever reason you are becoming veggie, you can't call yourself vegetarian if you eat any kind of fish or if you eat cheese with animal rennet.

In fact, ethically minded vegetarians don't buy leather. (Remember, leather came from an animal that once had a pulse and a pair of eyes!) However, as a vegetarian it may be argued that you could buy 2nd hand goods that contain leather.

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Read About Wheat Grass Benefits Also read about Wheat Grass Benefits Directory and Health Benefits of Wheat Grass

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Treat Your Hair Naturally

Author: Redmund

Is your hair getting thin? If it is, then you may be experiencing hair loss. You have to consider the fact that hair loss is a natural thing. People have been fighting it for quite a long time now and up until today modern research facilities are still looking for ways to treat hair loss.

It has been found that there are quite a lot of ways to treat hair loss. However, if you don't want to go through hair transplant treatment or you don't want to use synthetic medication and creams to treat hair loss, then you may want to go for natural hair loss treatment.

Hair loss is a problem that both men and women of all ages face. It does not discriminate and is not entirely random. It can be caused by many different things including age, diet, heredity, and stress. So is there hope of finding a natural treatment for your hair loss? The simple answer is yes there is.

These two questions are tightly woven together. The key is to stop the hairs from falling and then to establish a strategy to grow that hair back. How do you do this? Well in most people, hair loss can be associated to either a vitamin/mineral deficiency or an accumulation of DHT. These two are also related so by treating one of them you in effect can also treat the other.

The great thing about natural treatment for hair loss is that it is mainly composed of natural ingredients. Unlike synthetic hair loss treatment products, natural treatments don't have any known harmful side effects.

First of all, you need to remember that hair is a non living tissue in the human body. It is mainly composed of keratin which is a fibrous protein. Now when keratin builds up in the scalp, it will sprout the thing that we call hair.

In order to keep the hair healthy, you need to know that it should be properly nourished. For this to happen, the blood flowing in the scalp should be nutrient rich.

You also need to remember that there are quite a lot of factors that can cause hair loss. It can be caused by emotional stress, diseases, environmental factors, hormonal changes, thyroid gland functions, immune system disorders, ad it can also be caused by medication as well as your genes.

Now, in order for you to treat hair loss, you will see that the proper nutrition and the right kinds of herbs will be able to provide nourishment to your hair follicles which can revive it and start growing hair again. There are quite a lot of herbs that can prevent and also help treat hair loss. It will include sesame, aloe vera, saw palmetto, green tea, and horsetail.

Some herbs can be eaten or can be taken as a drink, while there are also other herbs that you can use externally. Try using aloe vera as a hair rinse. Not only that this will keep your scalp healthy, but will also stimulate your hair follicles to grow hair.

Another natural treatment is aromatherapy. It has been found that the oils used in aromatherapy will be able to stimulate your hair follicles and encourage growth. Not only that, you need to remember that aromatherapy can help you get rid of stress, which is also one of the main causes of hair loss.

Visit for more useful information on Hair Loss,Hair Loss Treatment and Female Hair Loss .

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Easy Soup Recipes–key to a Healthy Long Life

Author: Emily S. Johnson

Not everyone among us is a fitness freak. At young age you might not have paid attention to what mom used to say; that is - having healthy and nutritious food. For years you have consumed large quantity of burger, pizzas and colas. You found it heard to resist the temptation of ice creams, French fries and doughnuts. But if you are to join the forty-club it's time you should start eating healthy. Try some healthy diet recipes for yourself and for your family as well. In fact a healthy mother is the pillar of a happy and healthy family.

Many of us bear a wrong notion about health food. We think that health food is always minus the taste. But that is not the case with our healthy recipes that are available on websites and online magazines related to food and recipes. You can include in your daily diet some easy to cook soups that are both healthy and delicious. These easy recipes allow you to customize the soups accordingly with seasonal ingredients. Even if cooking is not what you really like these soups are some of the easiest meals to cook at home.

Tomato Soup

If you are tired of having the same old tomato soup everyday then do some experiments with it to please the entire family.

Heat the soup with 1/4th tea spoon of garlic powder and Italian seasoning each. Then add previously cooked meatballs in the soup.

Slit hero rolls and stuff the meatballs within. Top it with grated cheese. Broil it till the cheese melts. Or you can bring Italian flavor to American tomato soup by adding melted cheese tortellini to it. Finally serve the soup with grated Romano cheese sprinkled on it. And see the reaction of the people at the dinner table!

Chicken Soup

We all know that chicken soups are part of a healthy diet. Make ordinary chicken soup tastier with its Mexican variation.

Cook a basic 'all-you-can-eat' soup first. In a nonstick saucepan pour some water and add pieced carrots, onion, celery and garlic.

Cook it for 8 to 10 minutes until the vegetables softens. Then add tomatoes with its sides slit open along with chopped cabbages and green beans. Pour more water and broth and add salt and pepper for taste.

Cover the saucepan and let it boil. When all the vegetables turn soft your soup is ready to put in boneless chicken chunks to it.

Add some cumin seeds and corns and heat the soup to boil again. When chicken becomes tender simmer it for few minutes with crumbled tortilla chips. Finally serve with sprinkled cilantro and lime juice on it.

Vegetable Soup

Vegetables are low in calories and rich in vitamins. To get fresh and supple skin and flat abs vegetables should be essential part of your diet. Your must have been presenting salads and veg-soups on the dinner table for long and fed-up that your kids do not even want to taste them anymore. Try this vegetable soup that is tasty, easy to cook, cost effective and at the same time rich in nutrition values. To make this soup you only need seasonal vegetables and lentils. Regular vegetables will also do.

Chop vegetables such as cauliflower carrots and broccoli. Chop some fresh tomatoes finely and put it aside for later use.

Crush some green cardamom, cinnamon and clove together to create a spice mixture. Now pour the lentils into water and let it boil for 5 minutes. After 5-6 minutes add the chopped vegetables into it along with pinch of salt, black pepper and spice mix.

Boil the whole mixture for about 30 minutes. Stir it well so that the vegetables blend well. After 30 minutes add the chopped tomatoes in it and simmer for few minutes more. Finally, our appetizing Tomato-Vegetable soup is ready to serve.

Very easy, isn't it?

So, spice up your menu with some easy healthy recipes. Switch to a healthy diet today because to think healthy you need to eat healthy.

About the Author:

Emily S. Johnson is a self-published author and food critic. She writes articles on healthy diet and recipes for you. For more easy recipes, she recommends you to visit:

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Ready For Marriage? Questions to Ask Yourself Before the Wedding

Author: Cori Russell

A newly engaged woman certainly has a lot on her wedding planning checklist: Floral schemes? Check. Fabric swatches? Check. Vegan menu options? Uh..check. Emotionally prepared for wedding and marriage?..........Uh, am I?

Engagement and marriage is one of the most significant psychological transitions in our lives, packed with an assortment of tangled feelings. An engaged woman must face these internal details if she ever hopes to arrive at the altar psychologically prepared to say "I Do." But instead, the "essential" details of planning a wedding monopolize the thoughts of even the most consciously aware brides. So let's tear ourselves away from the 5th revision of the seating chart for a moment to ponder just what it means to get married and emotionally prepare for a wedding. Bring your focus back to the real you, and ask yourself these introspective questions before the big day.

To Prepare Emotionally for Your Wedding Day - Ask Yourself:

1. How do you plan to cope with the added stress that comes with planning a wedding?

Your to-list doubles the moment he pops the question, so some added stress is to be expected. Take a deep breath, and mentally prepare for the whirlwind that's to ensue. As you do this, tell yourself that a little added stress is ok - but losing sight of what's really important is not.

2. Who will be in your wedding party?

Choosing the women who will surround you on your wedding day is one of the most important wedding-related decisions you will make. This milestone marks a profound personal transformation, and the women by your side on your wedding day should calm and sooth.

3. How can your loved ones best support you throughout your engagement and on your wedding day?

What type or level of support will you rely on during this transitional phase? Will you need help with wedding planning details, or are you looking more for support on an emotional level. After you have explored your wishes, you should share them with those around you.

4. What are you happiest about when you think of your wedding day?

How can you make the most of this excitement and revel in it?

5. What is your biggest fear when you think of your wedding day?

How do you plan to cope with any wedding day jitters or potential mishaps?

6. How do you want to feel on your wedding day?

In such an overly stimulating environment, many brides report having to be perpetually "on" during their wedding, instead of being themselves in the moment. What are your expectations for how you will feel as a bride? How will you deal if the reality differs from these expectations?

Now Dig Deeper - To Prepare for Marriage - Ask Yourself:

7. Why are you getting married?

It's natural to get swept away in the excitement of getting engaged. But before hopping on the wedding planning fast train, take some time for a gut check and evaluate the reasons behind your engagement. Are you really in love with your fiancé? Marriage for any reason other than love - such as a ticking biological clock, financial security, family appeasement, or to avoid being the last lone single in your social circle - is a bad idea.

8. Do you stand to lose more than you gain?

Look at the cost of your current relationship and potential marriage. If you have to sever ties with friends and family or give up a flourishing career, for example, the cost is too high. Once the idea of being married wears off, reality - and resentment - will set in, and your frustration will grow like a cancer to your marriage.

9. How do you see your personal relationships changing after marriage?

Be prepared for marriage to impact the key relationships in your life. It's natural for your relationship with your parents, your friends and your fiancé to evolve with your engagement and throughout your marriage. Determine your expectations, and discuss them with others.

10. How do you see your role as a wife?

Your identity will inevitably change after you get married. How will you transition from the role of girlfriend to the role of wife? How do you see yourself fulfilling your new role(s) as a wife? a professional? a mother?

11. How do you feel about changing/keeping your last name?

Many engaged women struggle with the notion of the impending name change. How do you really feel? If you take his name, what are the implications for your identity? If you decide to keep your maiden name - or some combination of both - what are the potential ramifications? If you're grappling with this issue, our advice on whether to take his last name or keep your maiden name may help you make a decision.

Still not completely sure if you and your fiance are meant to be? Take this marriage compatibility test to find out.

About the Author:

Cori Russell is editor for and Gala Weddings Magazine. is a complete Weddings and Wedding Planning resource with a national directory of wedding venues and services, how-to guides, photo galleries, checklists, and expert advice to walk brides through every step of the wedding planning process.

View the complete sitemap to find everything you need to plan your wedding.

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Eat Fruits To Relieve Stress!

Author: Judy Sommer

With the stress apposite a part of day-today ordinary, relaxation has come up as a chief therapy for heeling it. Contemporary and recent world have come with an absolute new avatar of what was considered to be minimal weakness, which stress and disquiet.

It is known realism that relaxation answer to all stress or compel related evils, but another such actuality is the fruits are also a leading find of relaxation too.

Stress relaxation properties of fruits have made them utterly an accepted instrument in relaxation techniques. To understand how the fruits fit in relaxation, it is better to first understand the word relaxation and how different relaxation techniques employ the stress relaxation properties of fruits.

Relaxation is nothing but a tool to contest the strain and psychological imbalance caused by altering lifestyle, demanding daily routines and westernization. Relaxation techniques are the countless recreations methods proposed or projected to heel a body of its emotional and mean fatigues or stress. The appeal fruits play are of tools in some of these relaxation techniques. The stress relaxation properties of fruits have enabled many to consume them in enhancing the heeling reign of relaxation techniques.

If you are wondering why one requests to admire a relaxation skill, what are these techniques and how fruits gain them. Then you essential to shock from the early. Relaxation also known as stress management has these techniques or deeds that can converse harms like stress, fear, exhaustion, weariness and mood change. Relaxation is all about enjoying life as well treating the peaceful or worn outwits and body. Two major gear that relaxation or relaxation techniques do for you are the speech you to live satisfied and brisk, also they add to your wellbeing.

Some of the vigor profit relaxation offers decline of muscle tension, lowering of blood load, slowing down of focus beat and maximum over palpitation, no mood swings, no sleeplessness, dominate over nervousness, slash in want of concentration and no apathy or weakness. While relaxation has so many profit, the stress relaxation properties of fruits also fulfil figure refund and add to the heeling of nurture and body.

One goal why relaxation techniques use the stress relaxation properties of fruits is the reality they are natural and hearty too. Some of the fruits worn for relaxation are auburn, watermelon, blueberries, tartlet cherries, cherries and much more. Each of these fruits and many more of such fruits not only brings vivacity to cultivate, repayment body but also adds to aptness. For those still do not find wisdom to cater to fruits how about only having them for skin payback?

The chief intention of relaxation or any relaxation system is too calm down the scholar, emit the solidify muscles and refresh the senses. Fruits work on the same notion and therefore have amazing stress liberated properties, such as horrid pink brings muscle flexibility and relives the body of its strength and weakness, oranges or fruits with vitamins help in fighting stress by fighting unbound radicals (which motive of stress and are free in a dignity of strain or angst) and watermelon provision by hydrating mentality and body. Similarly fruits with low calories also add to the test against tension, compel and exhaustion.

Other wellbeing benefits that make fruits a good stress buster are they monitor integrity which reins or manages transform of blood glucose, pedals cholesterol and bother or colon evil. Fruits also have antioxidants and many judicious vitamins as well as reserves to rejuvenate the mentality and body.

Some of the relaxation techniques that have found to pound stressing relaxation properties of fruits in their working are aromatherapy, good diet and squeeze. Next time when you feel exhausted, sleepy and sad try having watermelon or a good fruit salad. Having a facial rubdown with actual fruit juice or paste also refreshes the psychological fatigue experienced after a long irksome day.

Stress, whether emotional or real, can be very well heeled by relaxation techniques, which are based on open and therapeutic earn of fruits as well as the stress relaxation properties these fruits yield. Truth stress relaxation properties of fruits are more or excluding united with how strong these fruits are and how there benefits corresponds to a satisfied heed and healthier body.

About the Author:

Information on grapefruit tree can be found at the Grapefruit Facts site.

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The Wonders Of Wheat!

Author: Jill Sabato

Wheat is one of our oldest harvested grains, first cultivated over five thousand years ago. Wheat germ is the embryo of the wheat berry (a wheat kernel that hasn't been heated, milled, or polished), and it's loaded with nutrition.

Two tablespoons, at only 52 calories, have 4 grams of protein, 2 grams of fibre, 41 micrograms of folate, a third of the RDA (recommended daily allowance) of vitamin E, along with high levels of thiamine, manganese, selenium, vitamin B6, and potassium together with reasonable levels of iron and zinc. Wheat germ, like flaxseed, is also one of the few sources of plant-derived omega-3 fatty acids. Just 2 tablespoons-the serving size of wheat germ - of Kretschmer toasted wheat germ have 100 milligrams of beneficial omega-3 fatty acids

Wheat germ contains phytosterols that play a role in reducing cholesterol absorption. A recent clinical trial reported that slightly less than 6 tablespoons of wheat germ per day caused a 42.8 percent reduction in cholesterol absorption among the human volunteers in the study.

Sprinkle wheat germ on yogurt, cold cereal or hot oatmeal. Add it to pancake and muffin mix and into quick breads. When you think that only 2 tablespoons of wheat germ can significantly boost your day's nutrition, why not keep a jar of it in the fridge.

Few issues in the diet and nutrition wars are more confusing than carbohydrates. Low-carb diets have increased the confusion: they've drawn attention to carbohydrates, but unfortunately have oversimplified the issue of protein versus carbs. Many people have come to believe that carbs equal weight gain and are bad. Foods are now being labelled with banners that claim "no-carb" or "carb-free." Consumers trying to lose weight are being told that eating carbs will destroy any hope of weight loss. What's been lost in this battle, at least for many consumers, is the fact that, like fats and proteins, not all carbs are created equal.

Carbohydrates are found in a large number of foods, from table sugar to vegetables, to beans, and whole grains. A teaspoon of sugar is a carb. So is a slice of whole grain bread. You can guess which is better for you, but you may not know why.

A whole grain, whether it's oats, barley, wheat, bulgur, or a host of others, contains every part of the grain. The three parts include:

• The bran: a health-promoting, fibre-rich outer layer that contains B vitamins, minerals, protein, and other phytochemicals.

• The endosperm: the middle layer that contains carbohydrates, proteins, and a small amount of B vitamins.

• The germ: the nutrient-packed inner layer that contains B vitamins, vitamin E, and other phytochemicals.

It's the synergy of these three components that makes whole grains life enhancing. The refined carbs described earlier have been stripped of their health-promoting parts. When grains are "refined" to make white flour or white rice, for example, the bran and the germ, and all their powerful nutrients, antioxidants, and phytonutrients are stripped away, leaving a starchy substance that is to whole grain what soda is to 100 percent fruit juice. They can make it into bread, but they can't make it healthy!
Whole grains are essential to health. They provide fibre, vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, and other nutrients that are simply not available in any other effectively synergistic package. All healthy diets rely on them. Despite the fact that whole grains form the basis of most food pyramids, indicating that they should be a significant part of our diet, many North Americans fail to eat even one whole grain serving a day! Men and women who eat whole grains have a reduced risk of twenty types of cancer, according to a 1998 review of forty observational studies, published in the journal Nutrition and Cancer.

Whole grains also benefit the heart, according to an analysis of data from the Iowa Women's Health Study, a nine-year study of more than 34,000 postmenopausal women. When all other factors were considered, it was found that women who ate a serving or more of whole grain foods each day had a 14 to 19 percent lower overall mortality rate than those who rarely or never ate whole grains. It really is a tragedy that we consume so few whole grains and so much refined grains. If we could shift that balance, we would all be much healthier. We've already seen how oats can lower cholesterol levels and stabilize blood sugar.
The complete list of the health-promoting abilities of whole grains is quite long.

Vitamin E intake from food, not supplements, has been inversely related to the risk of stroke. Whole grains and nuts are the two major sources of whole food vitamin E.

Whole grain consumption has been linked to a reduction in the risk of strokes. In the Nurses' Health Study, among the group that never smoked, a median intake of 2.7 servings of whole grains a day was associated with a 50 percent reduction in the risk of ischemic stroke. Given that less than 8 percent of adults in the U.S. consume more than three servings of whole grains a day, it's clear we are missing a major health opportunity.

One study in the Journal of the American Medical Association studied young adults and found those with the highest fibre intake had the lowest diastolic blood pressure readings. Hypertension is consistently the most important risk factor for stroke. Researchers estimated that a 2-millimeter decrease in diastolic blood pressure would result in a 17 percent decrease in the prevalence of hypertension and a 15 percent reduction in risk for stroke. Whole grains form an important part of the DASH diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension; see website that has repeatedly been found to lower blood pressure.

Whole grains are also helpful in preventing coronary artery disease. In the same Nurses' Health Study mentioned earlier, women who consumed a median of 2% whole grain servings a day experienced more than a 30 percent lowered risk of coronary artery disease.

Whole grains contain folate, which helps to lower serum levels of homocysteine - an independent risk factor for stroke and cardiovascular disease.

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To learn about bean varieties and cooking dried beans, visit the Fruits And Vegetables website.

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What Colour Are You Wearing?

Author: Hasna Farrukh

Imagine, wearing red shirt could make you more energetic or blue cap could keep your head from blowing off !!!! Seems ridiculous, doesn't it? It may be written with a bit exaggeration, as the process of colours' effect is obviously very slow, but it's true that colours do have an impact on your personality.

A suggested scientific reason may be that every colour has a frequency and wavelength of its own that is unique. When a human body is exposed to a specific frequency, it generates a certain response. So, a particular response is attributed to a particular colour. Moreover, it is proved by science that our minds also transmit waves with certain frequencies. Colours interact with the frequency of human mind and affect human emotions and ideas and hence, human behaviors and actions. Max Luscher developed a psychological colour therapy in the 1940's. He used 8 colours, red, yellow, green, blue, violet, brown, gray and black and claimed that he could tell the stress level and psychological make-up of a person by the order with which he chose the colour or paired one colour with another colour.

This is the reason why artist focus on the use of colours so much. Merely changing a single colour in a painting can change the meaning of the painting and the thought behind it. The same melody of color and human feeling and emotions plays here too. Colour is not only a proper subject taught to Bachelor of Fine Arts students but people do their Masters and even PhD's in this subject.

Many people believe that colours have some powers in them and that's why they believe that stones of various colours can bring change in their lives. Now, some of you might believe it too and many of you might be thinking that I am linking a superstition to a fact hence proving that it is not a superstition. The matter of the fact is that probably the obvious but gradual effect of colours and stones was told to them by their ancestors but it was badly exaggerated to form a superstition.

"If this was true, every person on earth would have lived a desired life and would have built a desired personality" said my friend when I was talking to her about it. Obviously, this is not a magic. This is a phenomenon. Just as your peers' habits affect your habits too, colours affect but too slow to be drastic. And if you are strong and rigid by mind that you will stick to what you are, the affect of these factors is minimized to almost nil.

Have you ever though why we pay so much attention on the colour to be used to paint the walls of our houses??? Here you are with the answer. Somebody would say, "because it creates an effect of spaciousness or suffocation, depending on the colour", another person would say "Because it affects our moods..." What is mood? The current emotional state or feeling. If a single mood continues to exist for long it becomes a part of your behavior. This is how a colour seeps into your personality slowly.

Now, some of you would be thinking that "You have talked enough about colours colours colours. Will you tell us now what colour has what impact?" Sure. There are two types of colours with respect to their impacts. Red, orange and yellow forms a range of warm colours and blue, violet and green are cool colours. Let's take a look on few prominent colors and their effects.

Red symbolizes love, passion, energy, vigor, action, confidence, courage, vitality. It's the warmest and welcoming colour; the colour of blood; the colour that brides wear.

Pink symbolizes calm pleasant feeling, neutralizing effect to violence, contentment, acceptance, love, beauty. Pink is formed of red and white. The amount of energy in pink is determined by amount of red it contains.

Brown symbolizes earth, order, convention, naturalness, solidity, warm, dependability, humbleness, consolidation. Too much brown creates a dull effect. Brown is a mixture of red, blue and yellow.

Orange symbolizes vitality with endurance, power, change, creativity, thoughtful warmth, curiosity. At some places it may also symbolize negative energy. It increases appetite.

Yellow symbolizes wisdom, joy, happiness, creative and intellectual energy, friendliness, memory and concentration, clarity of mind. It's the colour of sun.

Green symbolizes life, energy of growth, increase or expansion, nature, fertility, desire, well being. It is the colour of balance and neutrality.

Blue symbolizes youth, spirituality, truth, peace, coolness, intellectuality and knowledge, high ideas, flow of communication, sincerity, strength, cool energy. It is the colour of sky, ocean and twilight.

Indigo symbolizes intuition, meditation, deep contemplation, psychic power

Violet or Purple symbolizes Royalty, magic, mystery, good judgment, purposeness, imagination, inspiration. It is the combination of red and blue. So, it's used to calm over activity or to energize from depression.

White symbolizes Purity, Cleanliness, peace, openness, clarity, light, completeness. It's the colour of fresh beginning that can lead to any colour. White flag was used in wars to show end of war and peace.

Black symbolizes Death, evil, earth, stability, mystery, inconspicuous, fear of uncertainty, threatening unknown, something hidden or concealed. It is the absence of all color. Its also the colour of elegance and formality.

Gray symbolizes Sorrow, grief, security, maturity, dependability, responsibility and conservative practicality, void, emptiness, lack of movement, emotion & warmth, dullness. It is used to reduce the energy of other colours.

Now, you can check out which effect do you need.

About the Author:

Hasna Farrukh

Article Source: - What Colour Are You Wearing?

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Is Coffee Good or Bad for You?

Author: Dr. Thomas Bynes

When it comes to "stirring" up strong emotions, freshly brewed coffee is at the top of the list. Just walking into a coffee house, with its smooth, seductive coffee aroma, is enough to make you want to curl up next to a warm fire with a steaming cup of java.

In the past, however, there have been many negative articles and news reports about coffee, along with an equal number of positive health studies. So, what's the deal? Is coffee good or bad for you?

To answer this all-important coffee question, we'll need to discuss "The Good, The Bad, and The Yummy."

The Good: Recent studies paint an extremely positive picture when it comes to the various health benefits of a cup of Joe. For example, a study by the National Cancer Center in Tokyo found that people who drink at least 1 or 2 cups of coffe each day have a lower chance of getting liver cancer. This is a big deal, considering that the American Cancer Society estimates that nearly 19,000 new cases of liver cancer were discovered last year.

Another 2009 study found that powerful antioxidants present in coffee can lower a person's risk of acquiring Alzheimer's disease. Yet another study reported that drinking caffeinated coffee has a "striking protective effect" on preventing Type 2 Diabetes.

For all of you dieters out there, each time you drink a cup of coffee, your metabolism with get a boost for approximately two hours. When it comes to losing weight, metabolism is the name of the game!

The Bad: Now, on the negative side of the coffee bean, your favorite cup of cafe' is loaded with caffeine (unless you're drinking decaf of course)! For most daily coffee drinkers, caffeine can be very addicting. If you don't believe this, try hiding your wife's bag of coffee just before she wakes up. (You thought Swine Flu was scary). Taken in moderation, caffeine is not going to ruin your health, but like most things, the key is MODERATION.

Another long-held belief about coffee is that it is a diuretic, meaning that it increases your urinary output which can lead to dehydration. However, according to an article on, coffee may not actually "affect our fluid balance." If you want to be on the safe side, all you have to do is drink an extra cup of water for every cup of coffee you drink during the day. At the worst, you'll be plenty hydrated!

Lastly, when it comes to pesticides, coffee beans tend to be one of the most heavily sprayed products on the planet. If this doesn't sound appetizing, all you have to do is reach for a hot cup of organic coffee.

The Yummy: Let's face it, coffee is delicious. With all of the new flavor varieties and fancy coffee concoctions available, we truly live in the golden age of java. Scientifically, our sense of smell is directly linked to the emotional center of our brain, so just the aroma of coffee can make us feel calm, happy, and content.

As America works its way out of a major recession, and people find themselves stressed-out and discouraged, it's nice to know that a simple cup of coffee can provide us with some minor comfort and some major health benefits!

For more health and wellness information, please visit

About the Author:

Cedar Park Chiropractor, Dr. Thomas Bynes has over 11 years of clinical experience in providing gentle Chiropractic care, Trigger Point muscle pain relief, nutritional counseling, dieting advice, and exercise training. In 2009, Dr. Bynes published the detailed weight loss and wellness book “Sinner to Thinner,” a one-stop resource for healthy living, available at

Dr. Bynes specializes in light, non-force muscle and tendon treatments, which are wonderful for kids with pain and women with pregnancy pain. Each week at The Crossings Wellness Spa in Austin, Dr. Bynes presents a nutrition and weight loss lecture, as well as bi-weekly lectures at Fit 4 Life Wellness Center. For more information about Fit 4 Life Chiropractic in Cedar Park, please visit or call 512-250-8118.

Article Source: - Is Coffee Good or Bad for You?

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How The Best Toothbrush Should Look Like

Author: Bojana Mumovic

It’s difficult to imagine our life, these days, without a toothbrush. This small thing became a part of our every day life and its purpose is to make this life better. But how do we know that the right toothbrush is used? Most of us buy it automatically, trusting the way they look like. This article will help everyone to make the right choice in choosing a good toothbrush.

Toothbrush Size

To make the understanding easy let us divide all toothbrushes in several categories with their own classifications. Firstly we’ll analyze their size. Here it’s important to choose the toothbrush that will allow you easy access to all surfaces of the teeth.

For most adults, a toothbrush head a half-inch wide and one-inch tall will be the easiest to use and the most effective. Though there are larger toothbrush heads available, you may find that it is difficult to maneuver them to clean certain hard-to-reach areas, such as the sides and backs of your molars. The toothbrush should have a long enough handle so you can comfortably hold it in your hand.

Some specialists say that a toothbrush’s head should be small for good clean to all areas of the mouth, teeth and gums. Being small it will easily make its way to the tiny spaces between your teeth.

Toothbrush Bristle

Bristle variety is the next category to be described while choosing the best toothbrush. There are three main bristle types: soft, medium and hard, also called firm.

The soft toothbrush offers gentle cleaning for children, the elderly, the infirm, those with braces or other dental fixtures, or oral conditions that may require special consideration. This type of bristle may not provide the level of detail that people with regular teeth will require, but its perfect for those with different dental traumas and gums irritation.

The soft toothbrush is considered the best toothbrush. It is clearly recommended by dentists. However, medium and hard bristles are sold too. A medium brush is good for people of all ages as long as their teeth are in good condition and their mouth is healthy. The bristles have some degree of flexibility, but provide a thorough brushing of all the teeth and oral areas.

The hard toothbrush provides a strong set of bristles for large, sturdy teeth and gums. This brush is geared toward a mouth with significant dental needs. When using this type of brush, it’s important not to overdo the cleaning action, as it may rub enamel from the tooth’s surface or make the gums raw by causing irritation.

Toothbrush Material

Next category divides brushes by the stuff they are made of. Here we have plastic and natural toothbrushes. The first one are well known by everybody and can be found everywhere.

The second, the natural toothbrushes, have lost their popularity because of their cost and material usage. This kind of brushes is made of ecological stuff, like wood. The bristle is sterilized pigs’ hair, in fact. The pigs hair is taken from live animals which are shaved and then the hair is washed and sterilized.

These are considered the best toothbrushes because they don’t contain different chemicals and are absolutely harmless for the environment. However, this type of brushes should be replaced more often because the natural components keep dental bacteria stronger and the brush becomes dirty faster.

Manual and Electric Toothbrush

Next classification divides the toothbrushes into manual and electric. Manual toothbrushes are plain and simple. It does require a little skill to use these brushes, as in knowing where exactly to push it over so as to get the optimum cleaning action around the corners in the mouth.

It was proven that more dental plaque is removed using an electric toothbrush as compared to the amount that could be gleaned out using a manual one. Electric toothbrushes require lesser skill levels when using them. All you have to do is to throw the switch on and let the brush do its work. However, you must know as to how long you must keep it on. Since most people are not really aware of the time they need to keep brushing, some of these electric brushes come with an in built timer which automatically switches itself off after the pre-set time.

The facts are above. Now it’s your time to choose the best toothbrush for yourself. Good luck!

About the Author:

Article Source: - How Best Toothbrush Should Look Like

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Healthcare Tourism In Kerala

Author: Jolly Majumdar

Kerala, the southernmost state of India is renowned world wide for its scenic beauty, picturesque beaches and tranquil backwaters. All these things very well attracts the both national and international tourists. But a new added feather to Kerala's crown is the booming of health care facilities in the state. Both Government and private enterprises collaborated to enhance the health care sector.

The state government has prepared some ambitious planning to merged the tourism industry of the state with the medical facilities. The term given to this collaboration is Health Care Tourism or Medical tourism.

From the ancient times, Kerala is synonymous with the magical world of Ayurveda known as to be the "mantra or science of life". But with the rapid changing world scenario, Kerala now emerges as a modern health care provider. To attract the foreign tourists and projects itself as a international destination for health care tourism, Kerala government has established some world class hospitals equipped with all modern technologies and well qualified doctors. Even the State government organizes some road shows in some South Asian countries like Sri lanka, Maldives and also in some West Asian countries to showcases the possibilities and major attractions of Kerala's health care tourism.

Thanks to the scenic beauty of verdant valleys, sandy beaches and placid backwaters, every year more than 15000 tourists from across the globe, choses Kerala over other tourists locales as a destination for health vacation. And the state government is hoping that by the year 2010 this number could be rises to 100,000. Most of the foreign tourists who throngs to Kerala for health care belongs to the U.S, the UK, Europe, the Middle East and the Maldives. Even the NRI's who stays in other countries prefer India especially kerala for treatment. Due to the excessive health care cost and long queues for medical treatments, these bulk of tourists opt for Kerala as because here in Kerala the medical expanses like cost of surgery and hospital charges are very cheap in compare to other countries.

Kerala government is offering various kinds of medical tourism packages which includes various services that come in affordable prices. This kind of tour package provides facilities like
? at first the medical history of the patient is emailed and discussed with the related doctors.
? on receiving airport the patient is received by the representatives.
? he is than escorted to the hospital for treatment.
? on being discharge, a recuperative holiday at a resort is offered to the patient.
? before the final departure, a post treatment check up is done.
This are the inclusive facilities which are included in the package for the patient and the accompanying person.

In the coming years, it is for sure that India especially Kerala which has immense potential may attain the top slot in the country as well as in the world i n terms of health care sector.

About the Author:

Article Source: - Healthcare Tourism In Kerala

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All About Brown Bread!

Author: Jackson Sabin

With regard to the nutritive qualities of brown bread, Professor Jago (who I think one of our highest authorities) says that whole meal, and flour from which the bran and germ have not been removed, do not keep well. These bodies contain oil and nitrogenous principles, which readily decompose, producing rancidity and mustiness in flavor.

Not only do these changes occur in the flour, but they also proceed apace in the dough. The diastastic bodies of the bran and germ attack the starch, and more or less convert it into dextrine and maltose; they further attack the gluten, and that remarkably elastic body which confers on wheaten flour, alone of all the cereals, the power of forming a light, spongy, well-risen loaf. The gluten, under the action of the bran and germ, loses its elasticity, and becomes fragile and incapable of retaining the gas produced during fermentation; the result is heavy, sodden, indigestible bread.

Evidence of this is found in the fact that while whole-meal loaves are so excessively baked as to produce a crust two or three times the ordinary thickness, the interior is still in a damp and sodden condition. This is the effect of bran in whole-meal.

"Not only, then, on the ground of nutritive value may the use of a pure white loaf be urged, but such bread is more healthily made, and will be sweet and free from acidity when whole-meal and dark breads are sour and unwholesome. It has also been pointed out that the nutritive constituents of the bran are so locked within it that they escape unaltered from the human body."

Such, in brief, is Professor Jago's opinion of whole-meal, and bread made from it. My own opinion is that Darwin's theory of the survival of the fittest is very forcibly illustrated in the milling of cereals, and the adoption of food most proper for the human system. We have had brown bread and white bread before the public from time immemorial, and what is the result? Why, for every sack of wheat-meal bread which is baked we have a thousand sacks of fine or white bread. And what of our hospitals and our army and navy, with medical men at the head of them, watching the results of this food or that food, and its effects on the human body? I admit that brown bread does suit some constitutions; but to the majority of people it is nauseous, frequently causing flatulency. I will just quote another good authority -- Professor Charles Graham.

In his lecture upon ''The Chemistry of Bread-Making," delivered before the Society of Arts in December, 1879, he said: "As regards the importance of the constituents of bran, I say that the analyst, and the physician who makes use of the analyst as his supporter, in bringing before us the importance of brown bread as compared with white, and who assert that in rejecting the bran we are guilty of a serious waste of flesh-forming and bone-forming material, should not take a mere chemical analysis as all-sufficient to establish their point. A table showing, from an analyst's point of view, the comparative merits of various substances for feeding purposes, shows hay to be of high value as a food, and even oat straw -- as, indeed, every farmer knows from experience. Still more valuable for their heat giving, and especially for their flesh-forming, materials, are linseed- cake, rape-cake, and decorticated cotton-cake. Now those who hold, from mere chemical analysis, that bran is of such high value as a food material that its omission from flour would meet with grave censure, should, from a similar analytical standpoint, urge us to eat hay, oat-straw, linseed and cotton cakes. Doubtless these substances are of high value as food for cattle, because the herbivorous oxen can digest and utilize them with ease; not so with man, who would starve in a field where a cow or a sheep would fatten. As with hay or linseed cake, so with bran; I hold that the best mode of digesting such food substances is first of all by the aid of our hoofed friends, to convert them into milk or cream, or bacon, beef, or mutton."

Now these are the scientific opinions of two of our very highest authorities. But of late I have been making brown bread out of a blend of cereals made and milled by an enterprising firm of millers in the North of England, and I must really say that it meets a long-felt want, as it produces a brown loaf which is free from that nauseous taste of which complaint is so often made with brown bread, and has a good nutty flavor of its own.

In conclusion, let me say that we have reason for great hope for the future of the Bread and Confectionery trade. Many earnest minds are devoting both time and money to the development of this important industry, and their efforts cannot fail to result in bettering the knowledge and lightening the labor of the practical baker.

About the Author:

Find tips about baking problems and baking chicken at the Baking Ideas website.

Article Source: - All About Brown Bread

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20 Tips for Weight Loss

Author: Joseph Barresi

Weight Loss Tip #1:
Push in two fruits or vegetables with every meal you eat. This will fill your stomach and help you cut down on the calories you would take in from the other foods.

Weight Loss Tip #2:
Eat breakfast daily. You would have gone hours without eating since the previous night, hence eating breakfast would not decrease your tendency to overeat later during the day.

Weight Loss Tip #3:
Have some snacks every 4 hours. You could have any snack: Oranges, Apples, Chips, String Cheese, Pretzels etc. Eat anything you want (in small quantities), just make sure you have something in your stomach at all times, you shouldn't feel hungry.

Weight Loss Tip #4:
Eat at regular intervals. Eating at odd irregular times would upset your whole diet. It is always advisable to maintain a specific schedule and always stick to it.

Weight Loss Tip #5:
Always know your portions: Half a cup of rice is about the size of your fist, one ounce of cheese is as much as a large marble; a three ounce serving of meat is the size of a deck of cards.
Divide your plate into parts: Three fourths of it should be filled with vegetables, grains, beans and fruits while the other quarter should be extra-lean meat or low-fat dairy products.

Weight Loss Tip #6:
NEVER skip your meals. NEVER!
Skipping a meal might seem like cutting on calories but thats not the case. You are basically starving yourself which is very wrong. The next meal that you eat will be converted to pure fat. This will eventually cause you to gain weight rather than losing any.

Weight Loss Tip #7:
Drink A LOT of water. This is one of the most essential components of your diet plan. One glass of water every hour would do wonders to your body. It helps you eat lesser without making you feel hungry. The large amount of water intake also flushes out all the unwanted waste in your body and helps in digestion too. Drink atleast two to three litres of water daily.

Weight Loss Tip #8:
Eat slowly. Munch and chew every bite. Grind it to pieces before swallowing it. Generally when we're in a hurry, we just tend to swallow down whole chunks of food. We do not realise when we're full and when we're overeating. Eating slowly will not only give you satisfaction from every bite but you will also realise when to stop.

Weight Loss Tip #9:
Cut 100 calories a day from your diet. Replace your daily bar of chocolate with a banana or an orange. These 100 calories a day sum up to 1 pound a month. Just by giving up that one bar of chocolate, you can lose 1 pound of weight in one month!

Weight Loss Tip #10:
Buy pre-cut fruits and vegetables. You're more likely to munch on them as a snack or make a salad from them if they're already cut. You might feel lazy on one particular day and decide to wipe those veggies and fruits out for that one single day. However, if they're already cut, you'll feel like eating them.

Weight Loss Tip #11:
Go in for the less processed food. Its less fattening. For example: Potatoes versus chips, Whole Wheat Bread versus Doughnuts etc.

Weight Loss Tip #12:
Don't eat on auto-pilot. For example: Tasting the food you are cooking, Noshing from the serving bowl etc.

Weight Loss Tip #13:
Limit your alcohol intake. Limit it to only occasions. Alcohol is not only extremely fattening but also deteriorates your will power. Alcohol is also very harmful for your body in the long run. Try your best to limit your consumption, if not call it to quits.

Weight Loss Tip #14:

Don't do it alone. Get a friend or relative to go on a diet with you. In this way, both of you will inspire and push each other and keep going.

Weight Loss Tip #15:
Eat beans every now and then. Add a handful to your salads to curb your hunger pangs longer.
Sweeten your food with spice. use spices like cinnamon and vanilla to desserts instead of sugar. They're less fattening.

Weight Loss Tip #16:
Keep moving, Don't be a couch potato. Daily physical activity, like walking, along with healthy eating is key to long-term weight-loss success and maintenance. Once again, more is better.

Weight Loss Tip #17:
Make a strong start, Contrary to common wisdom that "slow and steady wins the race", weight loss is best, recent articles have found that dieters who lost weight quickly, lost more total weight and kept off more weight long-term. Researchers concluded that how well dieters do in the first 2-4 weeks predicts their success up to five years later.

Weight Loss Tip #18:
Fight your temptation. Don't break your whole diet plan just because of one outing with friends of family. Order just steamed veggies or maybe a grilled sandwich or even a soup and salad combo.

Weight Loss Tip #19:
Try introducing a herbal supplement in your diet to help curb your appetite and give you more energy as an alternative to overeating.

Weight Loss Tip #20:
The last and final tip: FOLLOW ALL THE ABOVE TIPS.
There are no hard and fast rules in this diet plan. If you notice, these are very easy methods and techniques that won't even make you feel like you're on a weight loss programme. Neither will you ever feel hungry nor will you have to undergo a monotonous, tasteless food intake. Its as interesting a diet as it gets.

Visit this website for a great weight loss program that will bring you results:

Better Fitness

About the Author:

Joseph is an unbiased reviewer for many different websites and products.

You can view one of his review sites here:

Wiccan Store Reviews

Article Source: - 20 Tips for Weight Loss

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Self-Improvement – 5 Questions That Will Help You Understand Yourself!

Author: James Pswarai

“Be all you can be.” Many people live up to this quote. They strive to do their best in everything they do. They give 100% at everything. However, some people want to be more than they can. They will change themselves (through self improvement) so they can become better than they are.
If you want to improve yourself you must first understand yourself. If you don’t understand who you are how will you improve yourself? Well you can’t, you must know who you are, what you want and what you don’t want. In this article I will reveal 10 questions that will help you understand yourself and with this information it will be easy to improve yourself.

1. What do I really want?
Well what do you really want? This can be for both the present and future. Do you want to start a family, exercise more or buy that car you’ve always wanted. Many of us have busy days which mean it is hard for us to think or do what we really want to. If this is you, take a bit of time for yourself to think about this. It helps you think of what you really want to do which is a small step towards improvement.

2. Should I really change?
This is the most vital question to self improvement. Do you really NEED to change? If so what are you looking to change, maybe it’s the fact that you are too shy or maybe you want to change your appearance and maybe even your personality. If you know what you want to change you can start improving it straight away.

3. What's the bright light in my life?
At times life can seem like a dark tunnel and you feel like you will never see the light again. Don’t think like that! You need to think positive. Of course life will have its downside but you have to think positive. Think of the fun things you have done with people, the places you have been and the new people you have met. These things are the light at the end of your tunnel.

4. Am I comfortable with what I'm doing?
You are unique. There is no one like you and you have your fingerprints to prove that too (no one has the same fingerprints). Are you comfortable to changing into something you aren’t, are you comfortable to change into someone who is less unique? Are you willing to be the same as others who too are trying to improve themselves.

5. Have I done enough for myself?
Do you feel like you have done enough? Have you accomplished something special in your life? If not then go for it! Everyone has done something for themselves no matter how big or small. Make sure you do too.

Not everyone is perfect but there is no need to be either. Everyone is unique in their special way and to try and become perfect you are becoming less unique as a lot of people too are trying to become perfect. Ask yourself these 5 questions to get a better insight to yourself and that will help you know what you need to improve yourself.

About the Author:

Need more self-improvement info? Then check out for more articles to help improve yourself

Article Source: - Self-Improvement – 5 Questions That Will Help You Understand Yourself

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Bottled Water: How Safe?

Author: Abhijit Banerjee

once a rarity, is now found everywhere, in homes, offices, stores, airplanes, and restaurants. In 2006, over eight billion gallons of bottled water was consumed across the globe. By 2007, the consumption in the US alone amounted to 8.8 billion gallons or 29 gallons per person. Bottled water was the second most consumed beverage in the US after carbonated soft drink

Over the past two decades, people have increasingly been shifting to bottled water because they consider it safe, find it refreshing, calorie-free, convenient to carry around, tastier than some tap water and healthier than soft drinks. But more and more people are questioning whether the water, and the package it comes in, is safe, or at least safer than tap water -- and if the convenience is worth the environmental impact.

Why is the demand for bottled water growing?

Most people have bottled water because

  • They consider bottled water safer than tap water.

  • It is portable and easy to carry.

  • It is refreshing
  • It is considered good for health.

Tap water may be contaminated by a range of chemical, microbial and physical hazards that could pose risks to health if they are present at high levels. Examples of chemical hazards include lead, arsenic and benzene. Microbial hazards, include bacteria, viruses and parasites, such as Vibrio cholerae, hepatitis A virus, and Crytosporidium parvum, respectively. Physical hazards include glass chips and metal fragments. Because of the large number of possible hazards in drinking-water, the development of standards for drinking-water requires significant resources and expertise, which many countries are unable to afford.

Some useful information

  • Tap water vs bottled water -- There is a common belief that botted water is better than tap waster. Though it might be true in developing countries, it is not the case in many developed countries. A four-year survey of the bottled water industry conducted by Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) in Canada revealed that one-third of the bottled water tested contained levels of contamination which exceeded allowable limits under either state or bottled water industry standards or guidelines. The survey also observed that an estimated 25 percent or more of bottled water was just tap water in a bottle -- sometimes further treated, sometimes not

  • Know your water -- To determine bottled water is really just tap water, check if the bottle label or the cap says "from a municipal source" or "from a community water system".

  • Contaminents in bottled water -- During the survey NRDC found most bottled water relatively free of contaminants. The survey opined that the the "spotty" quality of products of some brands might "pose a health risk, primarily for people with weakened immune systems (such as the frail elderly, some infants, transplant and cancer patients, or people with HIV/AIDS)." About 22 percent of the brands they tested contained, in at least one sample, chemical contaminants at levels above strict state health limits. If consumed over a long period of time, some of these contaminants could cause cancer or other health problems.

  • Health risk from plastic in water bottles -- Recent research conducted by NRDC revealed the presence of chemicals called phthalates, which are known to disrupt testosterone and other hormones, and can leach into bottled water over time. One study found that water that had been stored for 10 weeks in plastic and in glass bottles contained phthalates, suggesting that the chemicals could be coming from the plastic cap or liner. Incidentally, there are regulatory standards limiting phthalates in tap water and there are no legal limits for phthalates in bottled water. The US bottled water industry waged a successful campaign opposing the FDA proposal to set a legal limit for these chemicals.

To improve safety of bottled water

  • Initiatives should be taken by citizens to urge their concerned governments to adopt strict requirements for bottled water safety, labeling, and public disclosure. Citizens should specifically request for --

  • Setting of strict limits for contaminants of concern in bottled water, including arsenic, heterotrophic-plate-count bacteria, E. coli and other parasites and pathogens, and synthetic organic chemicals such as "phthalates".

  • Ensuring the application of rules to all types of bottled water -- including carbonated water and those sold intrastate or interstate

  • Setting regulations that require bottlers to display information on their labels about the levels of contaminants of concern found in the water, the water's exact source, how it has been treated, and whether it meets health criteria set by the concerned environmental protection agency and the disease control agency for killing parasites like cryptosporidium.

Bottled Water and the Environment

  • In 2006, the equivalent of 2 billion half-litre bottles of water were shipped to U.S. ports. In New York City alone, the transportation of bottled water from western Europe released an estimated 3,800 tons of global warming pollution into the atmosphere. In California, 18 million gallons of bottled water were shipped in from Fiji in 2006, producing about 2,500 tons of global warming pollution.

  • And while the bottles come from far away, most of them end up close to home -- in a landfill. Most bottled water comes in recyclable PET plastic bottles, but only about 13 percent of the bottles we use get recycled.

  • Plastics travel through our sewage system and land up in the oceans. This poses a huge threat to marine life. To a sea turtle, a floating plastic bag looks like a jellyfish. And plastic pellets, the small hard pieces of plastic from which plastic products are made, look like fish eggs to seabirds. Drifting nets entangle birds, fish and mammals, making it difficult, if not impossible to move or eat. As our consumption of plastic mounts, so too does the danger to marine life.

The Negative Impact of Bottled Water on Health

  • Bottled water is stored for longer periods and at higher temperatures than water distributed in piped distribution systems. As a result, some micro-organisms, which are normally of little or no public health significance, may grow to higher levels in bottled waters. These organisms appear to have little or no growth in tap water and in water bottled in glass containers as against stagnant water and water bottled in plastic containers.

  • Chances are ordinary tap water has been added to used mineral water bottles and sold as the original article.

  • The plastic used in both single-use and reusable bottles can be more of a contamination threat than the water. A safe plastic made of #1 polyethylene terephthalate (PET or PETE) is supposed to be used only once. However, it is often reused and chemicals such as DEHA, a known carcinogen, and benzyl butyl phthalate (BBP), a potential hormone disrupter.

  • There is a school of thought which advocates that even reusable water bottles should not be used. They question the safety of bisphenol A (BPA), a hormone-disrupting chemical known to leach out. Studies show that even extremely low doses of the chemical can be damaging. Research has linked the chemical to a variety of disorders, including obesity and breast cancer, birth defects and miscarriages.

  • The excessive use of bottled water (which often does not have added Flouride unlike tap water) may mean users won't get enough fluoride to build strong teeth and prevent decay

Bottled Water and Benefits to Health

In European countries, many consumers believe that natural mineral waters have medicinal properties or offer other health benefits. Such waters are typically of high mineral content and, in some cases, significantly above the concentrations normally accepted in drinking-water. Such waters have a long tradition of use and are often accepted on the basis that they are considered foods rather than drinking-water per se. Although certain mineral waters may be useful in providing essential micro-nutrients, such as calcium, the World Health Organisation (WHO) is unaware of any convincing evidence to support the beneficial effects of consuming such mineral waters.

It should be noted that neither the CAC nor WHO offer certification of any bottled or mineral water.

About the Author:

Freelance writer specially in areas of sustainable living. Currently a writer for Copperwiki, a conscious living website.

Article Source: - Bottled Water: How Safe?

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How to Meditate

Author: Akhil Aggarwal

Meditation is a mental exercise. It is a means to retreat from your daily routine in your own space of silence and peace. Meditation should not be seen as a religious practice or the latest fad. By practicing meditation regularly, you are in more control of your emotions, your energy levels increase, and your perspective on life can change (for better) because of the relaxation. Meditation is hard and it cannot be perfected. The key is being quiet in your mind. Below are a few simple things to do in order to meditate correctly.

Position: Sit down. Find a comfortable spot anywhere in your home or anywhere else where you can spend a few minutes without being disturbed. It is important to sit with your back straight. Following any special wrist or feet position is not a rule as any unusual body position can cause pain and hence distractions. Sit comfortably. Accessories such as incense, candles, or cushions can be added to the environment but remember meditation is what you're aiming for, rest are all superficial additives, which you will not think about or feel while you're in 'breathing'.

Breath. Breathing is what keeps us alive. We never think about it and we never really give nature the credit it deserves for making breathing so simple an effortless. While meditating feel your breathing. Feel the air moving up your nostrils as you inhale and feel is exhaling. You will notice a slight pause after exhaling and before inhaling. Do not experiment with your breathing rate; keep it as normal and natural as possible. This is the only activity or task that you do in meditation - breathe. As you focus on your breathing, you will realize that this effortless and natural process gives you the oxygen your heart, your brain and the rest of your body needs to function properly.

Get lost in the dark space. Close your eyes when you meditate. Do not allow any thoughts to wander in your mind and only focus on breathing. During all this, what is that you see? You may forget to notice what you see, which is perfectly normal. If however you notice the dark space inside your eyes, use that to let yourself lose. In doing so, you do run the risk of letting your imagination run and hence think – but remember thoughts are to be ignored. So do not be too imaginative, like do not imagine yourself flying in that space, but allow yourself to look deep into space. The deep darkness and the spotless fluency in you can bring peace to you with its silence.

Don’t be hard on yourself. Meditation is not easy. It cannot be perfected, so do not expect yourself to be perfect at it. By being imperfect I mean, that when you meditate you will get random thoughts, maybe even ideas. You will not notice when you strayed and started thinking about something. At this time you will let your judgmental side kick in and right yourself off as being incapable of meditating. That is not right. Everybody can (and should) meditate. The key here is not to judge as it is only natural to drift. When you notice yourself getting any thoughts, do not try to fight them, simply move the thoughts aside and get back to your breathing. Evan a regular practitioner's mind can go adrift every time she meditates, but she would know better than to judge herself.

Set an alarm: You can decide how much time you want to meditate. Usually 20 minutes a day is a good practice. When you sit down to meditate without a timer, you run the risk of thinking about the time and being tempted to peek at the watch sometime during meditation. When meditating its easy to lose track of time. Only after 1 or 2 minutes, one can feel that a lot of time has passed and perhaps one must check the time. All these thoughts are unnecessary distractions that you must make sure do not exist at all. The solution to this is to use a timer. Set the timer for as many minutes as you plan to meditate. If you set the timer at 10 minutes, you will not worry about exceeding the time limit, in case you have errands to run. Remember, your only activity is to sit down and breathe without thinking about anything. Therefore, to make sure that you prevent such distraction setting a timer is a good option.

Meditate when you can. (1) Traveling in a bus; (2) Waiting in a queue; (3) Waiting for someone to show up; (4) Taking a break from work.
Meditation, not necessarily, should only be done in the serene Himalayas, or in a quiet candlelit room. You can meditate wherever & whenever. Moreover, meditation can be done for just 1 or 2 minutes. All you need to do is, give yourself a moment, and just breathe. In just one minute you can feel relaxed and at ease. Repeat this couple of times a day, whenever you can and whenever you feel like it. Meditation is like your own personal retreat from the world around you, to a world of peace and quiet.

Best time to Meditate. There is no 'only best time' to meditate. Meditation should be done only when you feel that it is a good time to do so. Some like doing it in the morning, while others in the evening or even late at night. Moreover, it's not mandatory to meditate at the same time everyday, as long as you spend some time everyday with yourself in deep meditation.

Meditation is a skill. It requires regular practice. The study of Meditation is a science while practicing it is an art. Meditation takes away your stress. Meditation allows you to take some timeout from your daily routine of work and people, and provide your brain some time to rest. So, if you're suffering from anxiety, hypertension, excessive stress, emotional troubles, or you're simply overworked, Meditation can be a wonderful and simple way to help you by keeping your mind healthy.

About the Author:
Consultant and Business Analyst

Article Source: - How to Meditate

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