Home made Natural FAT burning RECIPE, Already got GOOD RESULTS, TRY & SHARE

Cabbage soup, also known as Wonder Soup. Wonder soup is probably the most popular fat burning soup recipe, as it’s a major part of the 7 Day Diet. This simple soup is a mixture of cabbage, onions, green bell peppers, tomatoes, celery, and a whole lot of water.
You can add salt or pepper to flavor it, but the purpose of this soup is to kick your fat burning into high gear.
The fiber in the soup will work wonders to clean out your body (expect to spend plenty of time on the toilet, so charge your mobile phone or tablet).
Eat this soup every couple of hours during the diet, and it will be a great soup to have on hand for any diet.
My own attempt at Poor Mans Soup – Was Delicious! .Poor Man’s Soup is made by rummaging around your fridge and pulling out whatever leafy and green ingredients you can find to make soup with.
If you can find a carrot or two, drop that into the mix, and pray that you have some flavoring like chicken or beef bouillon. It’s actually a very tasty soup, but it’s surprisingly low in calories. You will be consuming about 100 calories for every bowl of the stuff, and it will get your body burning fat nicely thanks to the high vegetable content.
(Note: Dark and leafy greens like kale, spinach, and broccoli are rich in calcium, one of the nutrients that controls how much fat your body stores.) Add lots of dark greens to your soup, and watch the pounds melt away.
-½ head of cabbage
-½ bundle of spinach
-½ head of broccoli
-2 celery sticks
-2 small carrots
-1 onion5 cloves of garlic
-1 zucchini
-1 liter of beef or chicken broth (low-sodium, low-fat broth is ideal)
Dice the garlic and onions very finely.
Place a soup pot on the stove with a tablespoon of olive oil in the bottom, and sauté the aromatics for 5 minutes.
Pour in the broth once the onions are tender, and bring the pot to a boil.
Slice the cabbage and spinach into small strips, dice the celery and carrots, cut the zucchini into small cubes 1/3” inch in width, and cut the broccoli into bite-sized florets.
Add the vegetables to the soup, season with salt, pepper, and the green herbs and spices of your choice.
Cook until the vegetables are tender.



Weight loss – the ONE thing you can do to shed pounds after your Easter chocolate binge

Easter – a time for family and lots and lots of chocolate. While these things make us feel great at the time, we all know overdoing it can leave us with a headache.

Sugar wreaks havoc on the human body, so how can someone limit the damage done by overindulging at Easter time?

The first thing to avoid doing to going cold turkey, according to Dr. Mike Roussell.

Sugar is an addictive substance, and starving the body off it can make a person feel horrible and have them reaching for the sweets again in no time.

Overweight woman and easter eggs

How to undo your chocolate Easter egg binge and get your diet back on track

How to get your weight loss diet back on track after binging on Easter chocolate

“Wait until your body feels hungry again and eat a small protein- and fiber-rich meal like broiled salmon and roasted broccoli,” Dr Mike suggested on Shape.com.

He claimed this meal will regulate blood sugar and help control hormones and cravings.

Dr Mike said drinking a lot of water is vital to get the body running smoothly again.

“This will help you burn off that extra sugar, as well as the water weight that goes along with it,” he added.

Easter egg cakes

Your Easter chocolate binge may have you feeling a little bit woozy

Eating cinnamon could help to kick start the body again after a sugar binge, according to the healthcare professional.

Dr Mike said: “Cinnamon is another compound that can improve your body’s ability to metabolize and use carbohydrates. Research shows that you can experience this effect with one tablespoon of cinnamon added to a meal.”

The effects of sugar on the body can be fairly shocking, damaging teeth and causing sickness.

Fifteen minutes after eating chocolate “sugar and bacteria in the mouth mix together to form an acid, which punishes tooth enamel,” Dr Wayne Osborne told the Independent.

After 30 minutes the body starts storing sugar at the liver as fat.

The heart rate will also increase and the body releases cortisol to calm itself.

After this comes a huge crash, causing a headache and nausea.


“In some instances, the immune system can be inhibited for up to five hours after a binge,” Dr Wayne said.

However, according to Dr Naila Arebi, Consultant Gastroenterologist at St Mark’s Hospital, chocolate can lower blood pressure.

The benefits of chocolate depends on the type of chocolate people choose from the supermarket aisles.

“The more favourable and healthy variety stems from its source, the cocoa bean.

“Fermentation in the bean and subsequent extraction generates cocoa butter and releases a variety of vitamins and minerals such as potassium and anti-oxidants.”

The first thing to avoid doing to going cold turkey, according to Dr. Mike Roussell
Focusing on fibrous vegetables like broccoli will help to get your digestive system back on track and have you shedding pounds again quickly.

You can also so some light exercise to jump start the system again.

Be careful if you find yourself binging over and over again, though.

“If you binge-eat as a habit, or compulsion, consider seeking medical attention. A binge-eating disorder is characterised by regular occurrences that drive you to eat beyond the point of discomfort,” said.



101 Self-Care Suggestions for When It All Feels Like Too Much

I think that, for most of us, there are times in life when it all just feel like Too Much.

There may be some days, weeks, months, maybe even years when – for whatever reason – just getting through the day, or going to work, or putting one foot in front of the other feels hard. Really, really hard.

Maybe it’s because you’re wrestling with anxiety, depression or some other mental illness. Maybe it’s because you’ve had your heart broken. Maybe you’ve gone through a physical or emotional trauma. Maybe you’re deeply grieving. Or maybe there’s no easily understood reason for why you’re feeling bad.

Whatever the case, I want you to know that it’s OK if you’re going through a tough time. This doesn’t make you any less lovable, worthy or capable. This just means you’re human.

Being a human can be a messy, hard, confusing, painful experience sometimes.2

So if you or someone you love is going through one of these tough times right now, a time where it all just feels like too much, I want to offer up 101 suggestions for self-care to help you or your loved one get through this time.

1. Have a good, long, body-shaking cry.

2. Call a trusted friend or family member and talk it out.

3. Call in sick. Take comp time if you can. Take a mental health day.

4. Say no to extra obligations, chores, or anything that pulls on your precious self-care time.

5. Book a session (or more!) with your therapist.

6. Dial down your expectations of yourself at this time. When you’re going through life’s tough times, I invite you to soften your expectations of yourself and others.2

7. Tuck yourself into bed early with a good book and clean sheets.

8. Watch a comforting/silly/funny/lighthearted TV show or movie. (“Parks and Recreation,” anyone?)

9. Reread your favorite picture and chapter books from childhood.

10. Ask for some love and tenderness from your friends on social media. Let them comment on your post and remind you that you’re loved.

11. Look at some some really gorgeous pieces of art.

12. Watch Youtube videos of Ellen DeGeneres and the adorable kids she has on her show.

13. Look at faith-in-humanity-restoring lists from Buzzfeed.

14. Ask for help. From whoever you need it – your boss, your doctor, your partner, your therapist, your mom. Let people know you need some help.

15. Wrap yourself up in a cozy fleece blanket and sip a cup of hot tea.

16. Breathe. Deeply. Slowly. Four counts in. Six counts out.

17. Hydrate. Have you had enough water today?

18. Eat. Have you eaten something healthy and nourishing today?

19. Sleep. Have you slept 7-9 hours? Is it time for some rest?

20. Shower. Then dry your hair and put on clothes that make you feel good.

21. Go outside and be in the sunshine.

22. Move your body gently in ways that feel good. Maybe aim for 30 minutes. Or 10 if 30 feels like too much.

23. Read a story (or stories) of people who overcame adversity or maybe dealt with mental illness, too. (I personally admire JK Rowling’s story.)

24. Go to a 12-Step meeting. Or any group meeting where support is offered. Check out church listings, hospital listings, school listings for examples.

25. If you suspect something may be physiologically off with you, go see your doctor and/or psychiatrist and talk to them. Medication might help you at this time and they can assist you in assessing this.

26. Take a long, hot bath, light a candle and pamper yourself.

27. Read these inspirational quotes.

28. Cuddle someone or something. Your partner. A pillow. Your friend’s dog.

29. Read past emails/postcards/letters etc. from friends and family reminding you of happier times.

30. Knit. Sculpt. Bake. Engage your hands.

31. Exhaust yourself physically – running, yoga, swimming, whatever helps you feel fatigued.

32. Write it out. Free form in a journal or a Google doc. Get it all out and vent.

33. Create a plan if you’re feeling overwhelmed. List out what you need to do next to tackle and address whatever you’re facing. Chunk it down into manageable and understandable pieces.

34. Remember: You only have to get through the next five minutes. Then the next five. And so on.

35. Take five minutes to meditate.

36. Write out a list of 25 Reasons Why You’ll Be OK.

37. Write out a list of 25 Examples of Things You’ve Overcome or Accomplished.

38. Write out a list of 25 Reasons Why You’re a Good, Lovable Person.

39. Write out a list of 25 Things That Make Your Life Beautiful.

40. Sniff some scents that bring you joy or remind you of happier times.

41. Ask for support from friends and family via text if voice-to-voice contact feels like too much. Ask them to check in with you via text daily/weekly. Whatever you need.

42. Lay down on the ground. Let the earth/floor hold you. You don’t have to hold it all on your own.

43. Clean up a corner of a room of your house. Sometimes tidying up can help calm our minds.

44. Ask yourself: What’s my next most immediate priority? Do that. Then ask the question again.

45. Read some poetry. Rumi, Hafiz, Mary Oliver are all excellent.

46. Take a tech break. Delete or deactivate social media if it feels too triggering right now.

47. Or maybe get on tech. If you’ve been isolating maybe even interacting with friends and family online might feel good.

48. Go out in public and be around others. You don’t have to engage. But maybe go sit in a coffee shop or on a bench at a museum and soak up the humanity around you.

49. Or if you’re feeling too saturated with contact, go home. Cancel plans and tend to the introverted parts of yourself.

50. Ask friends and family to remind you that things will be OK and that what you’re feeling is temporary.

51. Put up some Christmas lights in your bedroom. They often make things more magical.

52. Spend a little money and treat yourself to some self-care and comfort. Maybe take a taxi versus the bus. Buy your lunch instead of forcing yourself to pack it. Buy some flowers that delight you.

53. Make art. Scribble with crayons. Splash some watercolors. Paint a rock. Whatever. Just create something.

54. Go wander around outside in your neighborhood and take a look at all the lovely houses and the way people decorate their gardens. Delight in the diversity of design.

55. Go visit or volunteer at your local animal rescue. Pet some animals.

56. Look at photos of people you love. Set them as the wallpaper of your phone or laptop.

57. Create and listen to a playlist of songs that remind you of happier times.

58. Read some spiritual literature.

59. Scream, pound pillows, tear up paper, shake your body to move the energy out.

60. Eat your favorite, most comforting foods.

61. Watch old Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood videos online.

62. Turn off the lights, sit down, stare into space and do absolutely nothing.

63. Pick one or two things that feel like progress and do them. Make your bed. Put away the dishes. Return an email.

64. Go to a church or spiritual community service. Sit among others and absorb any guidance or grace that feels good to you.

65. Allow yourself to fantasize about what you’re hoping or longing for. There are clues and energy in your reveries and daydreams that are worth paying attention to.

66. Watch Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response videos to help you calm down and fall asleep at night.

67. Listen to monks chanting, singing Tibetan bowls or nature sounds to help soothe you.

68. Color in some adult coloring books.

69. Revisit an old hobby. Even if it feels a little forced, try your hand at things you used to enjoy and see what comes up for you.

70. Go to the ocean. Soak up the negative ions.

71. Go to the mountains. Absorb the strength and security of them.

72. Go to the forest. Drink in the shelter, life and sacredness of the trees.

73. Put down the personal help books and pick up some good old fashioned fiction.

74. Remember: Your only job right now is to put one foot in front of the other.

75. Allow and feel and express your feelings – all of them! – safely and appropriately. Seek out help if you need support in this.

76. Listen to sad songs or watch sad movies if you need a good cry. (“Steel Magnolias, anyone?)

77. Dance around wildly to your favorite, most cheesy songs from your high school years.

78. Put your hands in dirt. If you have a garden, go garden. If you have some indoor plants, tend to them. If you don’t have plants or a garden, go outside. Go to a local nursery and touch and smell all the gorgeous plants.

79. If you want to stay in bed all day watching Netflix, do it. Indulge.

80. Watch or listen to some comedy shows or goofy podcasts.

81. Look for and Google up examples of people who have gone through and made it through what you’re currently facing. Seek out models of inspiration.

82. Get expert help with whatever you need. Whether that’s through therapy, psychiatry, a lawyer, clergy, let those trained to support you do it.

83. Educate yourself about what you’re going through. Learn about what you’re facing, what you can expect to feel, and how you can support yourself in this place.

84. Establish a routine and stick to it. Routines can bring so much comfort and grounding in times of life that feel chaotic or out of control.

85. Do some hardcore nesting and make your home or bedroom as  cozy and beautiful and comforting as possible.

86. Get up early and watch a sunrise.

87. Go outside and set up a chair and watch the sunset.

88. Make your own list of self-soothing activities that engage all five of your senses.

89. Develop a supportive morning ritual for yourself.

90. Develop a relaxing evening ritual for yourself.

91. Join a support group for people who are going through what you’re going through. Check out the listings at local hospitals, libraries, churches, and universities to see what’s out there.

92. Volunteer at a local shelter or hospital or nursing home. Practice being of service to others who may also be going through a tough time.

93. Accompany a friend or family member to something. Even if it’s just keeping them company while they run errands, sometimes this kind of contact can feel like good self-care.

94. Take your dog for a walk. Or borrow a friend’s dog and take them for a walk.

95. Challenge your negative thinking.

96. Practice grounding, relaxation techniques.

97. Do something spontaneous. Walk or drive a different way to work. Order something new off the menu.Listen to a Spotify playlist of new songs.

98. Work with your doctor, naturopath or nutritionist to develop a physical exercise plan and food plan that will be supportive to whatever you’re facing right now.

99. Pray. Meditate. Write a letter to God/The Universe/Source/Your Higher Self, whatever you believe in.

100. As much as you can, please try and trust the process.

101. Finally, please remember, what you’re going through right now is temporary. It may not feel like that from inside the tough time you’re in, but this too shall pass and you will feel different again someday. If you can’t have faith in that, let me hold the hope for you.

I hope you found this list of self-care suggestions helpful in some way. But please remember, by no means is this list exhaustive nor will every item on this list possibly feel good and right for you. This list is not meant to be prescriptive, nor do I mean to imply you need to do all or any of these things to take good care of yourself. You are the expert of your own experience and I trust that you know what’s best for you.

Really, this list is really just a starting point meant to catalyze your own thinking about how you can best take care of yourself during life’s tough times and to spark your curiosity and interest in strengthening your self-care now and ongoing. Also, my hope is that in reading this you’re also hearing me say how normal and natural it is to struggle and to have these tough, hard times. It’s part of being human. You’re not alone in this. 

Until next time, take very good care of yourself.

Warmly, Annie


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How Quitting Booze Helped My Borderline Personality Disorder

When people ask me why I don’t drink, the reasons I give vary from “I don’t like feeling drunk” to “I do it for my boxing” to “I did Stoptober and just kept going.” They’re all true, but not the whole truth. And the whole truth is a long story. A long story I’m not ashamed of anymore. So, if you’re interested, pull up a chair and let’s go back a few years…
After moving back home after university, I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety. A month later, I was referred to a psychologist and told I “presented with symptoms of Borderline Personality Disorder.” If you’re unfamiliar with BPD, symptoms include: chronic feelings of emptiness; intense, unstable relationships; impulsive, dangerous behaviours (such as substance abuse, binge eating and reckless driving); and an unclear self-image. You’re also more likely to need treating for others disorders, such as depression, anxiety and eating disorders. The cause of BPD is still unclear but research suggests it’s a combination of genetics and environmental factors, like childhood abuse or neglect.
Thanks to a nerdy personal interest in psychology and the movie Girl Interrupted, my diagnosis didn’t come as a shock. I was an eccentric and incredibly sensitive child who always felt different – and wasn’t alone in that opinion. Other kids (and even my own mum) always told me I was “weird.” I had intense relationships from a young age. At uni, two nights out ended in A&E because I’d gone a few rounds with a wall and lost. But I should point out now that, other than those two ambulance rides, I’d never had a problem with drinking. Since I went to my first house party aged 13, all the way through to my student days, I was never The Mess but more the Holder Upper, The Kebab Shop Shepherd or The Mother Hen.
For 18 months, I took my anti-depressants and went to group for dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT), which is like CBT but with more focus on mindfulness and self-acceptance. (And if you want to take the piss out of mindfulness for being part of the trendy “wellness” culture, it works better for BPD than any drug, so fuck you.) Eventually I “no longer presenting” with as many BPD symptoms, stopped going to group and went on living life.
And life was good. I moved to London, got a job in journalism and had a great social life. Then, without warning, my solid friendship with booze fell on its arse. Drunk Ally, who had always been a fun, good-time girl, would suddenly get a darker look in her eyes. She’d totally shut down, wouldn’t listen to anybody and would sneak off to a quiet spot and self-harm. I didn’t recognise this person. The hangovers were also worse; not physically, but I’d feel incredibly sad and ashamed.
But alcohol tolerance changes all the time, right? Especially after uni, where you’re used to drinking every day? But this wasn’t that. This was excessive drinking, simple as. Every time I knocked back a drink, I’d be straight up for another and, thanks to a strong stomach, I never needed to stop. As for the consequences…
“You really weren’t that bad last night, Ally. Don’t be so hard on yourself.”
Well… alrighty then.
When I first told people I was going teetotal, most were surprised and thought it was extreme, because I wasn’t a “liability” when I drank and nothing “that bad” ever went down. But I’m a firm believer that you don’t need to be hospitalised to take your mental health seriously, or for anybody else to. If you think you might be depressed, but don’t deserve help because “I haven’t tried to kill myself”, stop it now. Don’t compare yourself to others. Be kind to yourself. When I drank too much, I self-harmed and didn’t tell anyone. And I figured, because I wasn’t hurting anyone but myself, everything was fine, right? Looking back, I was my own worst enemy.
After a particularly messy night in September 2015, I decided to try Stopober. And what a revelation! I felt great. Being a confident person, I didn’t feel awkward or anxious without booze. I sank Virgin Dark & Stormies and woke up with nothing but sore feet from dancing. No hangover, bloodied knuckles or cuts. No sinking feelings of fear, shame or dread. No apology texts. I missed having an excuse to eat pizza at 4am but thought, yeah, I could get used to this…
Not only did Drunk Ally get a few more outings before 2015 was done, she also started testing a theory that maybe her choice of substance was the problem, not her. Yeah, things were starting to get really dangerous. My last drink was some time in the early hours of New Year’s Day. I was a wild nuisance and woke up that afternoon feeling more sad and pointless than ever. I’d had enough. Feeling this low for the sake of a little buzz just wasn’t worth it anymore. I’d done Stoptober. I survived a hen do without a drop of booze, for goodness sake. I could do anything! And so I decided, as many of us do on January 1st, that I’d never drink again. That was over a year ago. And get your sickbags out, guys, because it’s one of the best and easiest things I’ve ever done.
Mental health isn’t black and white. I made a mistake thinking I was “cured” after therapy. The symptoms of BPD will always be there because this is who I am. And I’m OK with that now.
Since stopping drinking, my mental and physical health are the best they’ve ever been. I spent a lot of 2016 (ironic that that’s my best year to-date) having words with myself and finding out what my triggers are. I realised that those “impulsive, dangerous behaviours” happen when I feel empty because there’s no emotion, no natural instinct shouting, “Hey, Ally, put down that glass/fist/knife, this is probably a terrible idea!”
You can’t always control how you feel. Some days you just feel shit. But if you can identify your triggers, you can start to turn things around. I now know that if I work too long or too hard, I turn into a robot. Lesson? Take a lunch break, Ally. Nobody’s going to thank you for that overtime.
Also, I often hear people worry that stopping drinking will make them boring. Give. A. Shit. If this is you, maybe you should try a dry month to work on getting a better opinion of yourself. Being teetotal in no way makes you “better” than other people, but it definitely makes you more comfortable in your own skin. There’s something really liberating about acting like a silly bugger with nobody able to say “Oh, she’s just doing that because she’s hammered.” If I dance on a table or text someone I probably shouldn’t at 2am, it’s because I want to. I now live a life with absolutely no regrets.
So is this teetotal thing forever-ever? Yeah, probably. I just don’t miss it at all. And I’m not saying all this to try and convert anyone. Do what ya like, mate. My dad loves a bottle of red, doesn’t get drunk or hungover, and apparently has the cholesterol of a 25-year-old. Why should he stop? But if one person reads this and takes comfort, decides to get help or makes a positive change, then that’s something I can raise a cuppa to.

13 Reasons Why is an insult to anyone with mental health issues

You can’t remedy depression with ‘love’

13 Reasons Why, a Netflix original series based on the YA fiction novel by Jay Asher, details the events leading up to and following the suicide of 16-year-old Hannah Baker. It grossly trivialises mental health and romanticises suicide – and don’t tell me it doesn’t when her ‘suicide note’ comes in the form of god damn cassette tapes. Indie, right?

The show leaves you asking – whose story is this? Hannah’s? Clay’s? The dual narrative is spread so thin that it’s hard to sympathise with anyone. That aside, every character appears horribly selfish, overdramatic, and frankly unrealistic. It’s like its writer, Brian Yorkey, googled ‘Millenial trope’ and spat out a dozen whining brats. It turns into a ‘whodunnit’; a blame game where fingers are pointed and guilt is spread around a bunch of teenagers like a really, really shit version of The Secret History. Suicide isn’t caused by other people – it’s not murder.

The show even addresses this, but still its message is confused: ‘I cost a girl her life because I was afraid to love her’ Clay says – fundamentally fucked-up – to which Mr. Porter replies ‘You can’t love someone back to life’. True. This little exchange, however, ends with Clay saying, ‘You can try’. What kind of message is that? ‘We all killed Hannah Baker’ Tony tells Clay. No, you didn’t – she killed herself. That’s the point.


Suicide is caused by mental illness, not bullying; but is Hannah Baker portrayed as mentally ill? Everyone’s experience is different, but are there any symptoms of depression here? Where’s the numbing lethargy? Where’s her losing interest in her appearance? Where’s the self-harm? Speaking of which – Skye, the one character with scars, tells Clay ‘it’s what you do instead of killing yourself’. Where’s her recovery? What sort of message is this sending to the millions of young adults watching this show? Not everyone who commits suicides shows signs, granted. Almost all suicides are described as ‘shocking’. But is the word ‘depression’ ever uttered once in all 13 episodes?

It’s unrealistic. The mental health narrative is as pushed under the rug as ever and Hannah Baker is about as good a poster girl for the depressed as Kendall Jenner is for the oppressed. We never really tap into Hannah’s psyche: she’s just a narrator. The result is that she comes off as an over-dramatic snowflake. Yorkey’s way of addressing this seems to be making Hannah say ‘I’m not!’ whenever anyone accuses her of seeking attention or being a drama queen.

Give us a protagonist who physically can’t get out of bed; who ugly cries in the bath every night for months; who suffers with irrational thoughts of self-hatred. Just something – anything – to throw the focus on the day-to-day struggles of someone with a mental illness. A real-life Hannah Baker would not commit suicide – because Hannah Baker is not mentally ill. Or at least not the Hannah Baker we’re being shown.



Fantastic New Study: taking a hot bath may be as effective as 30 minutes of exercise

When coming home after a tiring 8-hour day at work, getting the right amount of exercise can be challenging. We’re stressed out, tired, and have spent hours accommodating other people. Taking a half-hour walk is likely not the most appealing way to spend your limited amount of free time.

However, while exercise is important, it isn’t the only way to burn calories, if you’re not up to taking a power walk. Here we explore the benefits of hydrotherapy as well as a study that shows how a hot 1-hour bath could burn almost 130 calories, assisting you to your fitness goals.

Baths Burn Calories!

The 2016 study by Dr. Faulkner looked at 14 obese and lean males who either did 60 minutes of moderate cycling or bathed in 104°F water. Both forced the body to use more energy than when at rest, and those who bathed burned 79% more calories than they would have just sitting on the couch.

However, those biking for 60 minutes burned almost 750% more calories than when at rest. This study suggests that exercise is still the best way to lose weight and reach your fitness goals, bathing can be more accessible to people who face a lot of fatigue, stress, and muscle pain who find it difficult to exercise daily as a way to potentially increase metabolism.

The Benefits of Hot Water

Bathing provides benefits to our heart, skin, and muscles. It can be used for more than just to burn calories.

Lowering Blood Sugar

The same 2016 study by Dr. Faulkner found that bathing for one hour in 104°F water before a meal helped to regulate blood sugar better than exercise immediately after a meal when blood sugar is at its highest. These effects did not last throughout the day, but including baths around meal times can reduce dangerous blood sugar spikes without dangerous medication.

Therefore, baths can help those with type 2 diabetes and others at risk of high blood sugar to regulate the effects.

Heart Issues

An observational 2015 study on sauna bathing  which looked at 2315 middle-aged men found that those who spent more time in the sauna had less risk of:

  • Sudden cardiac death
  • Fatal coronary heart disease
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • All-cause mortality

While this isn’t the same thing as a bath, it works on similar principles. Saunas are hot, humid, and users relax when they enter it. This study did not explore why saunas have this effect, but it does suggest that some of the conditions associated with hot baths might reduce the risk of fatal heart disease.

Hot Showers and Health Benefits

Nothing feels nicer than a long hot shower when you aren’t feeling well or just need to relax — but why?

Hot showers have assisted the body in various ways such as:

  • Cleansing the skin with hot steam and water to open the pores allowing toxins to be rinsed out
  • Improving circulation which also loosens joints, tendons, tissues, and muscles. This can be useful for easing pain and reducing inflammation.
  • Warming up for a workout by loosening muscles and getting the blood flowing for exercise.
  • Relieving stiffness by letting hot water flow over and relax the tense muscle.
  • Relieving coughs: Steam can loosen phlegm and mucus that causes coughs and sore throats
  • Decreasing stress and insomnia as the hot water is a natural sedative, which calms your body, mind, and nerves.

While these are the benefits of showers, many of the benefits are from the hot water and steam. Baths utilize these principles in many of the same ways: dousing muscles, pores, and nerves in warm water, while the steam produced from a hot bath can easily be inhaled for respiratory relief.

Bathing for the Elderly

A 2008 study looking at 81 elderly patients who had a 30-minute soak in mineral water found that their osteoarthritis or chronic back pain was reduced for at least three months. This study is a testament to how useful baths are at treating severe pain, providing an effective alternative to more invasive medications or less accessible massage therapists.

DIY For Natural Bath Bombs

Here’s a DIY natural bath bomb for some added benefits and a more relaxing bathing experience. Incorporating a lavender essential oil into this recipe will make it even more calming and enjoyable.


While bathing isn’t going to burn calories at rapid speeds to turn you into an Olympic athlete, hydrotherapy is a relaxing alternative to working out and can protect you from heart disease and the complications of type 2 diabetes. Most of all, it is easy to incorporate into your lifestyle consistently because it’s not hard to “force” yourself to take a relaxing bath in the evening, is it? So go ahead and take some “me” time, you know, for your health!




10 Things I wish I’d known about having a child with autism

There’s a saying that’s often repeated because it’s true: If you’ve met one person with autism, you’ve met one person with autism. That’s because children (and adults) on the autism spectrum are very different from one another. There is no one correct road map to follow when raising, teaching and loving them.

April is Autism Awareness Month, and TODAY spoke to numerous parents and loved ones about what they have learned — and would like to tell others — on their particular autism journeys.

1. Don’t worry about what other people are thinking

“The most freeing moment of this journey for us was when we stopped worrying about public appearance. Your child needs for you to be 100 percent in tune with them and what they are experiencing, not worried about how you are perceived.”

—Sarah McKamey, son Micah, 9, Manchester, Tenn

2. When it comes to autism, one size doesn’t fit all

“I wish I knew that autism is not the disease — ignorance is. If you put a PlayStation game into an Xbox would it work? Of course not. So does that mean the Xbox is broken? No. The same thing applies for a child with autism. Just because they don’t learn the way ‘typical’ children do doesn’t mean there is something wrong with them. It means that we as parents, caregivers, friends, neighbors and teachers need to find different ways to try and make a connection.”

—Laura Jones, children Kate 12, Jack 11, Maxx 9, Lambertville, N.J.

Laura Jones and family.

3. Know that medical issues can be involved

“I wish I had known about the invisible medical issues of autism right from the start. For years, I had no idea that gastrointestinal dysfunction, including constipation, acid reflux, inflammation and pain, could dramatically affect my son’s sleep patterns, mood, irritability, aggression, attention, and even communication. Our son had to power through those problems all by himself on a daily basis, and it breaks my heart that we never suspected the cause of many of his struggles.”

—Janet Lintala, son Evan, 22, West Virginia


4. Be grateful for the strong connection you and your child will forge

“In reflecting over the last 24 years of our journey, I will say this: My son gives me 100 kisses and hugs every day, he is always happy to see me and he will always be with me. He doesn’t lie and he doesn’t judge. He is welcoming to anyone that wants to enter his world. On the other hand, my father sees me about twice a year since we live 1000 miles apart. So which dad is better off? It’s not better or worse, it’s just different. Once you understand that, your road will be smoother.”

—Scott Sanes, son Jache, 24, Great Barrington, Mass.

Scott Sanes

Scott Sanes says his son, Jache, shown, gives him 100 kisses and hugs a day.

5. Prioritize independence and communication

“After baseline medical needs are met and you figure out how to deal with the ‘everyday,’ I recommend that parents pay particular attention to the areas of communication, self-help and socially appropriate skills. A child who has a high academic ability, but poor communication skills, hygiene or a proclivity to hurt others will greatly limit their opportunities.”

—Nicole Sugrue, son Adem, 19, Port Washington, N.Y.

6. Trust your instincts even with the doctor’s advice

“What I wish I knew way back then is that it’s OK to get a second opinion when your gut tells you the doctor is wrong. We knew that Gavin had autism. Yet, we were told he had ADHD, that he had anxiety and depression. It took his first psychiatric hospitalization at age eight for a psychiatrist to finally say he thought Gavin had Asperger’s. We were always told, ‘Why is a diagnosis so important to you anyway? It’s just a label.’ Because the right diagnosis means the proper treatment. Now he has a job, he’s involved in school activities. He’s going to college in the fall to become a chemistry teacher.”

—Shannon Smyth, son Gavin Nelson, 18, Lake Ariel, Penn.

7. Seek out a mentor

“Looking back, it would have been helpful to have had a mentor or someone who had already walked the road that I faced. Initially, the diagnosis was overwhelming. Just as a driver on a road trip stops at visitor centers for information, I found myself searching for directions on how to not only cope with the future as his primary caregiver, but also how to fund his immediate and future medical expenses and care. My experiences have instilled in me a desire to mentor those with whom I come in contact who are facing the future I faced.”

—Lisa Bamburg, son Joel 20, Jacksonville, Ark.

8. Watch for depression signs in older children and young adults

“While it’s a good thing to integrate your autistic child into a regular school system, be aware that most autistic children that can be integrated are fully aware that they are autistic and as they become teenagers and into their twenties that awareness of being different can lead to depression. My brother went into the system at a young age and even graduated from college. Even highly intelligent children on the spectrum have difficulty finding their place in the world. It’s not talked about very often, but it’s a very important thing to bring more awareness to.”

—Tanya Ryno, 47, brother, 24, Alpine, N.J. and Maine9. When you change your expectations, the world will grow

“I wish we knew that autism just means different, not less. Instead of baseball games in elementary school we would have sensory integration programs. I wish we knew then that it will be okay some days will be hard, some days will be beautiful and at the end of each of them when we tuck our son into bed, the most important thing we can do is make sure he knows he is loved.”

—Tabatha and Tony Rainwater, son Junior, 5, Knoxville, Tenn.

Grayden Grossman with his parents.

10. Celebrate all of your child’s achievements

“I wish I had known that unlike other parents we can’t take even the smallest achievement or milestone for granted. When our son started wearing his coat without a fight and expressed that he was cold, when he was able to participate in circle time during music class and when he got up on stage with the other kids at his school show we celebrated.”




10 Ways Chronic Illness Has Made Me a Better Version of Myself

Everyone’s chronic illness journey is different. Each person touched with the “spoonie” brush has experienced different diagnoses, time periods of illness, symptoms, medications, emotions, healthcare plans, doctors, surgeries and prognoses. One thing that each of us may likely have in common though is the experience of some kind of evolution – a growing or changing of identity as who we are as individuals is impacted forever. I stress though that I am not referring to a change from a healthy person to a sick person, as who we truly are is certainly not defined by a diagnostic label. The evolution I refer to is the growth we experience within ourselves as the hardships we endure begin to alter our perceptions of our lives. Whilst our physical selves may seem to run at a loss as we experience pain, weakness, fatigue, surgery or medication side effects on a daily basis, I truly believe that who we are on the inside is largely enhanced and improved by the struggle.

My chronic illness journey began about 12 years ago when, at 17 years old, I began to experience some stomach issues that were identified as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). These symptoms would come and go, “flaring” on occasion. Experiencing recurrent bouts of anxiety meant that many of my symptoms were often linked to my stress levels or even to hyperawareness of my own body. Over the years, I continued to lose small amounts of weight. Following my father’s death from cancer in early 2015, the symptoms began to worsen but were again put down to the stress of his passing. It was lucky that an unrelated gynecological ultrasound detected several swollen loops of small bowel in my lower abdomen that warranted further investigation. One colonoscopy and CT scan later, I was finally diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. After managing my new-found lactose intolerance, intestinal stricture and small-bowel inflammation with diet, short-term Prednisone and long-term Azathioprine therapy, the gynecological issues I had had previously began to exasperate. It was time for the laparoscopy that had long been on the cards. Just two months ago, it was confirmed that I also have endometriosis. Extensive adhesions were found throughout my abdomen (caused either by the Crohn’s, endo or both) and what could be treated was removed during a three-hour surgery. And that brings us to now – and so the journey continues!

When I reflect on my story so far, I notice how far I have actually come, not only in terms of my physical health, but mostly in terms of my mental and emotional well-being. My experiences are certainly none that I would wish upon anybody; however, I am quickly learning the importance of not resenting or begrudging them. One of my favorite quotes is: “We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand.” Acceptance of our journey as “spoonies” is what allows us to open ourselves up to learn from it and see a positive side to everything we go through (even if not straight away). The lessons I have learned already are countless, but for the sake of this blog, I have come up with a list of 10 that I feel have changed me the most and have helped to put me on a path to becoming a better version of myself.

1. Always be grateful.

No matter how sick you may feel at any given time, appreciate that you are alive and that there is so much in your life to be thankful for. Take time to practice gratitude.

2. Never underestimate your strength.

Sometimes we are unaware of how strong we really are until we are truly tested. Our bravery and persistence cannot fully be realized until we experience fear and challenges. When you learn that you can survive more than you ever thought you could, it’s a pretty amazing feeling.

3. Grow your resilience.

Each hurdle thrown your way may be difficult for a time, but each boundary is growing your ability to recover. You have survived everything you’ve been through to date. Remember this (as well as the strategies that have worked for you) for next time. You will need them again.

4. Your energy and “healthy times” are precious.

When you only have so many “spoons” for each day, savor them and use them wisely. You can never be sure when your next flare-up of symptoms will be, so make the most of the time that you have feeling well. Know the limits of your spoonie body. Listen to it when it tells you to stop.

5. It’s OK to be selfish sometimes.

Take time for yourself without guilt or reservation. If you need a rest, take it. If you want to pamper yourself, do it. Cancel some plans. Learn to say no. You might resent it at first, but you will thank yourself later.

6. There’s something to be learned in every hardship.

In every struggle, find the hidden message. There is always something positive to be gained, no matter how small. Learn. Grow.

7. Take care of your body.

Love, nourish and care for your body for what it is. Never resent it or wish it were something more. It is what it is and it shouldn’t be “blamed” for its shortcomings. Bring your mind and body back together as one. Do some yoga. Love yourself.

8. Educating yourself is important.

Read extensively and critically. Research everything. Know your disease, medication and body inside out. Alleviate some anxiety by being more informed. If something doesn’t seem right, ask questions. Find as many ways to help yourself as possible.

9. Cherish those who support you.

Notice who checks in with you when you’re unwell. Identify who you can talk to about your health and who seems to feel uncomfortable discussing it. It may be that that aspect of your life is just too much for some people to deal with. Accept that, and surround yourself with the right support when you need it. Join a support group. Follow Instagram pages that inspire you. Read a blog. You aren’t alone. There are people who understand.

10. Be positive – always.

There is always beauty in the battle. Perhaps we have been given our journeys to teach us more about who we are and to change our perspectives. Maybe being unwell has made us more grateful for the days we feel good, which many may take for granted. Perhaps we have been enlightened by the understanding that good health (and our lives) are fleeting, and now know that each day truly is a blessing.

As I said from the outset, everyone’s chronic illness journey is different. The lessons I have learned so far may be very different from yours. Whatever our experiences may be, I hope we can all learn something, grow ourselves and find the positives within the journey. Whilst we will always experience sad and negative feelings along the way, it is important that we acknowledge our frustrations but be willing to let them go. It is by letting go of the bad that we make room for something better and, ultimately, someone better. If the “beauty in the battle” refers to the silver linings that emerge from our struggles, know that the greatest “beauty” to come out of your journey will likely be you.



5 Things My Loved Ones Should Know About Life With Rheumatoid Arthritis

There are so many things I do not know how to express or explain to the people who love me. The next five bullet points are some of the most important to me.

1. I never wanted to become sick.

I pray every day that God will see fit to heal me. At this point in my illness I do not even fully understand what is going on in my body most days. I just made a list of symptoms to show my doctor which was about 20 bullet points. I am hoping they will connect them to form a more solid diagnosis. I am hoping they have answers, that there is something to be found that is fixable. I have rheumatoid arthritis and have ignored it for many years. Not facing it has only made my symptoms worse. It can take six months sometimes for my body to recover from a flare, surgery, injury or infection.

2. Please be considerate and know I am trying my best.

I am actively involved in a couple different ministries and charities and I love the opportunity to serve. However, if I am there, know it is taking all my energy to get by. Please do not judge me for not being extra social or participating in every event. Please do not exclude me from group activities. I tend to leave as soon as the event is over and I sometimes get left out of group pictures and after event lunches or activities. It can be a painful reminder that I am disappearing from the lives of my friends.

3. There are weeks when I do not leave the house for days.

Texting and social media are very much a lifeline for me right now. Getting up and out of the house is taking an increasing amount of energy. So, I connect with friends via my phone. Sometimes I just need to text and share that I am having a bad day. Even if I do not receive a response, just being able to share it lightens the burden. The friends I do have in my life are very important to me. So, if one of them needs me, even if I cannot make it out, I am always available by phone or text.

4. I have a “knee-jerk” reaction to apologize.

I am always saying I am sorry. I apologize for apologizing too much. I have been trying to shift my behavior to saying thank you instead. Thank you for understanding, thank you for your help, thank you for including me and so on and so forth. Apologizing for my illness only makes me a victim to it, versus having gratitude for what I can do.

5. I do not want to hear how high your pain tolerance is.

That is a phrase I really do not like to hear. It is dismissive, ignorant and comes with an air of superiority. People with chronic pain probably have a high pain tolerance but the pain never goes away! It would wear down the toughest of the tough if there was no end in sight. I am really glad that your pain tolerance is high; that is a good thing. It is just very insensitive to say that to someone who has shared their struggle in chronic pain with you.

Please do not ever take your health for granted because we rarely get warning when things go bad. Becoming chronically ill can go from bad to worse very quickly. If you love someone with a chronic illness, tell them you appreciate the things they can do. Listen to them cry and resist the need to “fix” them. The more you try to fix them, the more broken they feel.



Soon a blood test will help detect brain injury in infants

A team of scientists has come up with a new medical test that may help identify infants who may have had bleeding of the brain as a result of abusive head trauma, sometimes referred to as shaken baby syndrome.

Developed by the researchers at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC and University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, the serum-based test, which needs to be validated in a larger population and receive regulatory approval before being used in clinical practice, would be the first-of-its-kind to be used to detect acute intracranial hemorrhage or bleeding of the brain.

Infants who test positive would then have further evaluation via brain imaging to determine the source of the bleeding.

“Abusive head trauma (AHT) is the leading cause of death from traumatic brain injury in infants and the leading cause of death from physical abuse in the United States,” said senior author Rachel Berger.

Missed diagnoses can be catastrophic as abusive head trauma can lead to permanent brain damage and even death. (AFP/iStock)

However, approximately 30% of AHT diagnoses are missed when caretakers provide inaccurate histories or when infants have nonspecific symptoms such as vomiting or fussiness. Missed diagnoses can be catastrophic as AHT can lead to permanent brain damage and even death.

The researchers collaborated with Axela, a Canadian molecular diagnostics company, to develop a sensitive test that could reduce the chances of a missed diagnosis by using a combination of three biomarkers along with a measure of the patient’s level of hemoglobin, the protein that carries oxygen in blood.

Axela’s automated testing system allowed the researchers to measure multiple biomarkers simultaneously using an extremely small amount of blood, an important characteristic of a test designed to be used in infants.

The test correctly detected acute intracranial hemorrhage because of abusive head trauma approximately 90% of the time, a much higher rate than the sensitivity of clinical judgement, which is approximately 70%.

“The test is not intended to replace clinical judgement, which is crucial,” said Berger. “Rather, we believe that it can supplement clinical evaluation and in cases where symptoms may be unclear, help physicians make a decision about whether an infant needs brain imaging.”

The specificity of the test or the ability to correctly identify an infant without bleeding of the brain who would not require further evaluation was 48%. The researchers aimed for the test to be highly sensitive rather than maximizing accuracy, since missing a diagnosis has more serious consequences than performing brain imaging in babies without the condition.

“This study illustrates the benefits of being able to perform highly sensitive tests at the point of care,” said co-author Paul Smith.