Simple gestures, like opening a door for someone or allowing a fellow motorist in front of your vehicle, can reap great internal rewards, according to research. In two separate studies involving nearly 300 people, Japanese researchers correlated acts of kindness by study participants with feelings of happiness.  The more frequently the kindness to others, the more the participants reported their a significant increase in their own feelings of emotional well-being.
– from The Doctors’ 5-Minute Health Fixes: The Prescription for a Lifetime of Great Health, (Rodale Books)

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Alcohol, that is.  Here’s an exercise to start tonight: Write down how much beer, wine, and other drinks you consume in a week.  (Use that cocktail napkin.)  You may surprise yourself.  Calculate the calories and expect another surprise.

A reasonable-sounding two beers a night can mean more than 2,000 calories a week—almost an extra day’s worth.

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Pigging Out on the Weekends

Binging on the weekends is a problem seen with many people trying to lose weight.  They are eating and drinking healthy during the week, but when the weekend comes it is time to feast.  The weekend is also used as an excuse to take a break from exercising.  Weekend feasts with too many calories and the lack of exercise during the weekend can cause trouble beyond Sunday.

If you need to reward yourself for a healthy week, which is completely fine, have only one cheat meal, not an entire weekend of them.   After all, having an all-you-can-eat weekend is like eating poorly for nearly 30 percent of your week. That means you’d be eating well just 70 percent of the time, which will not get you great results.

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Sugar Addiction

Did you know that sugar meets the criteria for an addictive substance?


  • It stimulates the release of neurotransmitters in the brain, such as dopamine and serotonin, in a manner similar to alcohol, cocaine, and other drugs of abuse.
  • People eat is compulsively, despite negative consequences and the intention to stop.
  • With continued use, people develop a tolerance to its effects.
  • Heavy sugar consumers have trouble functioning without it.
  • When consumption ceases, withdrawal symptoms occur

Ways to break a sugar addiction:

  • Take a multivitamin and mineral supplement.  This will help reduce cravings for some.
  • Learn to identify and manage cravings that are not a result of hunger, but instead are rooted in stress or anxiety.
  • Develop alternative ways of managing stress: Take a walk, meditate, listen to music, or take a hot bath.  Relaxation helps to balance your blood sugar and reduce cravings.

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Skipping Meals or Snacks

Not eating can mess with your body’s ability to control your appetite and slows down your metabolism. It also destroys willpower, which is just as damaging. If you skip breakfast or a healthy snack, your brain doesn’t have the energy to say no to the inevitable chowfest.
So skipping a feed helps turn us into gluttons at night. Your starving brain just doesn’t have the fuel it needs to keep you on track, monitoring your diet.  Instead, spread your calories out into three meals of about 300-500 calories each, and two snacks of  approximately 200 calories each through out the day.

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