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Monday, March 31, 2008

The 2 Most Attractive Facial Features

When it comes to facial features, it's our teeth and eyes that make our faces most attractive, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Dental Association. Eyes are the window to your soul, and large, round eyes with that oh-so-innocent look are deemed the most attractive. Coy women can use their expressive eyes to appeal to a man's ego. What is not attractive are bulging, bloodshot eyes. To make your eyes look their best, get enough sleep so they are clear and shining. Use make-up if you prefer, but not too much.

When you smile, it's your lips and teeth that send a message--from charming to sexual. An open smile is dazzling and hard to resist. "Study after study show that people think that what is beautiful is good," psychologist Adrian Furnham, co-author of "The Psychology of Physical Attraction," told the Belfast Telegraph. It may not seem fair, but attractive people are more likely to win at the game of life, getting the best jobs and making the most friends.

How do you rate your smile? If you're like the 78 Norwegian participants in this survey, you would rate your smile higher than your dentist would. Specifically, the volunteers, none of whom were actively seeking cosmetic dentistry and who ranged in age from 22 to 84, were asked to rate their smiles on a 100-point satisfaction scale. Their dentists were asked to do the same thing, using photographs of their regular patients to make the assessment. The results? The patients gave themselves an average score of 59.1, compared with the dentists' much lower rating of 38.6. "The fact that the patients had much higher opinions of their smiles than we dentists did is interesting," the researchers wrote in JADA.

Here's the difference: Even if our teeth aren't perfect, most of us are accepting of and contented with our smiles. Dentists are looking at something entirely different, including lip lines, tooth shade, spacing and crowding. Still, taking care of your teeth--brushing, flossing and seeing the dentist every six months--protects one of your most beautiful assets.
source: Netscape.com


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Sunday, March 30, 2008

Ideal Way to Lower Blood Pressure

To lower your blood pressure just do this: Get married. Live happily ever after.

Happily married adults have lower blood pressure than singles with supportive social networks, suggesting marriage may literally be a matter of the heart, according to a study from Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.

The study: Led by psychologist Julianne Holt-Lunstad, the team arranged for 204 married and 99 single adults to wear portable blood pressure monitors, mostly concealed by their clothes, for 24 hours. The monitors recorded blood pressure at random intervals throughout the day--even while the volunteers slept. Each person's blood pressure level was recorded about 72 times. "We wanted to capture participants' blood pressure doing whatever they normally do in everyday life," Holt-Lunstad said. "Getting one or two readings in a clinic is not really representative of the fluctuations that occur throughout the day."

All participants completed a roster of friends in their social network and answered questions about the quality of those relationships. Married participants also completed questionnaires on the quality of the relationship with their spouses.

The results: Men and women in happy marriages scored four points lower on the 24-hour blood pressure test than did single adults. Having a network of supportive friends did not translate into improved blood pressure for singles or unhappily marrieds, which surprised Holt-Lunstad and her two student collaborators, Wendy Birmingham and Brandon Jones. The study also found, unsurprisingly, that unhappily married adults have higher blood pressure than both happily married and single adults.

"There seem to be some unique health benefits from marriage," said Holt-Lunstad. "It's not just being married that benefits health. What's really the most protective of health is having a happy marriage."

With the monitors recording blood pressure both day and night, the researchers could see that blood pressure for married adults--especially those who were happily married--dipped more during sleep than happens with singles. "Research has shown that people whose blood pressure remains high throughout the night are at much greater risk of cardiovascular problems than people whose blood pressure dips," Holt-Lunstad said.

Why does a happy marriage make us healthier? Spouses can promote healthy habits, such as encouraging each other to see a doctor and to eat healthy foods. The marriage relationship is also a source of emotional support in good and bad times. Sharing good news, for example, generates positive emotions, which in turn boosts the body's functioning.

The study findings were published in the Annals of Behavioral Medicine.

--From the Editors at Netscape


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Saturday, March 29, 2008

Pretty Women Make Men Stupid!

Women have known this since the beginning of time. Now psychologists at McMaster University in Canada have figured it out, too. A beautiful woman can make a guy stupid.

According to New Scientist, pretty women scramble men's ability to assess the future. Scientifically, it's known as "discounting the future." Seen frequently in animals, it means preferring an immediate, lesser reward to a greater reward in the future.

Here's an example: If someone offered to give you $10,000 now or the same amount five years from now, you would choose to take the money today because there is no value in waiting. But if someone were to offer you $10,000 today or $50,000 in five years, you would probably opt to wait for the higher amount. This is called "rational discounting." If you were to take the $10,000 today, it's called "irrational discounting."

The study: McMaster University researchers Margo Wilson and Martin Daly wanted to find out if sexual mood influenced discounting behavior. They showed 209 male and female students pictures of attractive and not-so-attractive people of the opposite sex. Each was then offered a chance to win a prize. They could accept a check for between $15 and $35 tomorrow or one for $50 to $75 at some point in the future.

The results for the men: After a man viewed pictures of women who were of average attractiveness, they made a rational decision about the prize money and accepted the larger amount to be received in the future. But when they had just seen pictures of beautiful women, they discounted the future value of the reward in an irrational way and opted instead for the immediate and smaller cash outlay. In other words, after seeing a very attractive woman, the men were more likely to make dumb choices.

The results for the women: Viewing the photographs of men--whether they were sexy hunks or just run-of-the-mill guys--had no effect on women's ability to make rational decisions.

Why the difference? Wilson and Daly don't know, but they suspect that viewing pictures of pretty women is mildly arousing for men. If that's the case, it would activate neural mechanisms associated with cues of sexual opportunity. Tommaso Pizzari, an evolutionary biologist at Leeds University, offered another possible explanation to New Scientist: "If there's the prospect of getting a very attractive partner it may pay a man to take more risks than if an average partner was available."

The research findings were published in the journal Biology Letters.
source: Netscape.com





Friday, March 28, 2008

The Worst Shoes Women Can Wear

Maybe we should all just go barefoot.

Finding the perfect pair of shoes is a quest for many women. Sexy is always good. Stylish is essential. Comfortable is wonderful, but not always thought to be necessary. We are ruining our feet. Just ask podiatrists who are probably able to send their children to the nation's most expensive colleges thanks to their brisk business repairing so many feet wounded by high-heels.

"The current trend in fashion is very bad for women's feet," Dr. Lloyd Smith told New York Times reporter Lorraine Kreahling. Smith is president of the American Podiatric Medical Association. "Super high heels with very narrow toes create problems and exacerbate existing conditions."

Why are high heels the bad boys of the shoe world? Dr. Tzvi Bar-David, a doctor of podiatric medicine at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center in New York, explained the physics to the New York Times: High heels lift your foot out of its natural position, which in turn shortens the Achilles' tendon. They also pitch the weight of your body forward so it's disproportionately resting on the ball of your foot. That upsets the stabilizing mechanics of the foot. "High heels have a narrow area of contact and they point the toes downward, which puts the foot in an internally rotated position and makes their wearer more prone to spraining an ankle," Dr. Bar-David explained.

So if super high heels are bad for our feet (Duh! We knew that!), then what can we wear? Smith offers his shoe dos and don'ts to the Times:

  • Round-toed shoes with five- or six-inch heels may be fashionable, but they aren't any better than the super high heels.
  • Flip-flops
  • , the antithesis of high heels, must be great for our feet, right? Wrong. Smith calls them "close to horrible for the feet." He says, "They are totally flat, soft and squishy, and offer no support and no protection. They can also catch on things and expose nearly naked feet to being stepped on.
  • Athletic shoes
  • , if not properly fitted, can even lead to problems that require medical intervention.
  • Tight dress shoes
  • can put so much pressure on nerves that they can be damaged, which can eventually lead to arthritis.

So what CAN you wear on your feet? The New York Times reports: "Medical experts agree the best shoes for healthy feet mimic the foot's natural shape, while offering support in the arch and a flexible sole underneath the toes, the way most athletic shoes do."

Smith advises you to look for the following when purchasing shoes:

  • Relatively flat sole.
  • The heel should fit snugly into the shoe.
  • There should be lots of room in the toe box for your tootsies.
  • The uppers should be constructed of soft materials.
  • The shoe should have laces that make it adjustable.
source: Netscape.com

So what are the most comfortable shoe brands?
According to Zappos, we can have several options to pair comfort and style. Here are some of the hottest comfort brands:

BeautiFeel
BeautiFeel footwear was founded in 1990 out of a profound conviction that today's modern woman deserves shoes which combine the basic features of comfort & beauty, health & esthetics, natural feel & advanced design, with quality materials & craftsmanship. This combination of the comfort features with unique, advanced design, proper use of materials and colors, makes Beautifeel the fashion leader in the Dress Comfort field, and popular in many countries worldwide. Beautifeel shoes and sandals combine supple leather, padded insoles and a variety of sizes and widths to create footwear that is not only beautiful but they feel good too. When you are a Beautifeel woman, you can enjoy comfort, style and fit all in one gorgeous shoes. BeautiFeel offers a wide range of shoes and sandals, in a wealth of designs and colors, each enabling you to enjoy the unique combination of BeautiFeel features each season.

ara
For over 50 years, Ara has been providing its customers with footwear that is both comfortable and stylish. This commitment to fashion, fitting, and quality has allowed Ara to become one of Europe s greatest producers of women s footwear. With factories and offices in 6 countries, Ara is able to draw from a multitude of creative sources to deliver products that are on the leading edge of fashion and comfort. Using only the finest materials, each product is manufactured paying the utmost attention to detail and quality. Ara designs each shoe to cushion the foot s complex anatomical structure. Ara also offers patented Goretex technology in selected styles for increased breathability in the summer or warmth and moisture-proofing in the winter. From leather to suede, from boots to flats you are sure to find something that will give that special touch to your wardrobe. Whether you are heading to work or out for a night on the town, Ara s wide range of styles will not disappoint. The best part, your feet will not only look great adorned in Ara footwear, they will feel great as well.

Fitzwell
Tired of compromising comfort for style? All Fitzwell styles have the perfect combination of both comfort AND style. The gel insole collection has been laboratory tested to withstand up to 1,000 lbs of pressure to insure durability and absorbs the shock from every step we take. Don't suffer another day with shoes that aren't quite as comfortable as you'd like. Discover how good the perfect fit can feel with Fitzwell.

Trotters
From its very beginning in 1935, Trotters has been dedicated to creating high-quality women's footwear with appealing looks and exceptional comfort. Trotters first shoes were moccasins made by Native American craftspeople in Old Town, Maine, where the company was founded. The unique comfort of Trotters shoes begins with careful choice of materials: the softest leathers, high-tech cushioning and flexible soles. And unlike many companies, Trotters develops a separate last (the form around which the leather is shaped) for each size and width. So every pair feels like it was made just for you. Trotters shoes not only come in wide range of sizes and widths, there is a large selection of styles to pick from including sandals, shoes and boots. With so many choices, you are sure to find the perfect pair of Trotters shoes.

Stonefly
Nature created human beings barefoot, but evolution has changed the rules. Stonefly's answer to the strenuous life that knows no compromise: the answer is Absolute Comfort. Footwear born of sophisticated technological choices and thus capable of guaranteeing limitless comfort no matter what the place or occasion: in the office, at home, out in a rainstorm, in the height of winter. Stonefly just won't settle for less. Stonefly was founded in 1993 with the precise goal of introducing a new concept of comfort to city footwear. To reach it, it intertwined creativity with Made-in-Italy quality, experience, research, innovation and a constant eye on the market. To maintain it, Stonefly undertook research, created structures, organized networks and entered joint ventures. Today they have achieved leadership in the international sector of comfort, with a complete range of footwear for men, women and children.

Mephisto: Mephisto Shoes
For more than 35 years our goal has been the same: to create and manufacture the world's finest walking shoes. True to its heritage, MEPHISTO shoes are designed and built to be perfect. That is the reason we utilize more than 140 different operations and take more than 90 minutes to manufacture a single pair of MEPHISTO shoes. It is this ideal combination of know-how, technology and experienced craftsmanship that has made MEPHISTO shoes one of the leading companies in France and a benchmark of perfection known around the world. MEPHISTO has won numerous quality and design awards over the years. It is no wonder MEPHISTO customers are so loyal. When people experience MEPHISTO hand crafted quality, they discover true value.



Earth: Earth Shoes: Women's
Imagine a shoe so different it changes how you think about footwear - and exercise. Earth shoes Kals Negative Heel Technology shifts your weight back, helping you burn calories while strengthening and toning your body. It s a part of every Earth shoe design, and part of being good to your whole self. Earth shoes Kals Negative Heel Technology also includes a unique design that positions your toes higher than your heels. A slight incline of 3.7 is complemented by support through the arch, which positions the body to trigger an array of benefits for the whole body. Earth shoes also feature a form-fitting, cushioned footbed with Gelron2000 memory gel to provide a comfortable and healthy experience.



Thursday, March 27, 2008

Sleep 6 Just Hours? Scary Side Effect

Women who regularly sleep six hours or less a night appear to have a far higher risk of developing high blood pressure than those who get longer periods of shuteye, according to a new study from Warwick Medical School in Coventry, England, reports Reuters Health.

The study: The team of British researchers followed 10,300 adults between the ages of 35 and 55 for five years. All had normal blood pressure at the beginning of the study between 1997 and 1999. They were then reassessed between 2003 and 2005. Twenty percent of the study participants were newly diagnosed with high blood pressure.

The results: Women who routinely slept six hours or less were 42 percent more likely to develop high blood pressure, while those who routinely slept no more than 5 hours had a 31 percent higher risk. While other risk factors, such as smoking, being overweight or having a sedentary lifestyle, did partially contribute to it, an independent link between sleep and blood pressure still remained.

Here's the oddest part: The findings only applied to women. There was no correlation between sleep and blood pressure for men, leading study leader Dr. Francesco P. Cappuccio to theorize there is a "gender-specific" relationship between sleep deprivation and high blood pressure. Previous research has linked poor sleep quality, specifically sleep disturbances caused by sleep apnea, to higher blood pressure, but it now appears that just a reduced amount of sleep even without a sleep disorder can take a significant health toll.

How can lack of sleep lead to high blood pressure? The researchers speculate that sleep deprivation keeps the nervous system in a state of hyperactivity, which in turn affects systems throughout the body, including the heart and blood vessels, reports Reuters.

The study findings were published in the journal Hypertension.

--From the Editors at Netscape



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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

What a Man's Biceps Say About Him

Older men who have big biceps and a smaller waist circumference are not only more attractive, but also will likely live a lot longer than their more portly friends. British researchers have concluded that the size of a man's belly and the bulk of his biceps provide a far more accurate forecast of his mortality than body mass index (BMI) alone, reports Reuters Health.

The team from the Royal Free and University College Medical School in London analyzed data on 4,107 men ages 60 to 79 over a six-year period. During the study period 713 of them died. Those whose waists were greater than 40 inches and had above-average muscle mass were 36 percent more likely to die than the men who had smaller waists and bigger-than-average muscles. Those who had big bellies and small muscles had a 55 percent greater mortality risk. Interestingly, BMI was only helpful for predicting mortality among very thin men, who were actually at an increased risk of dying. As men age, they typically gain belly fat and lose muscle mass, changes that are not picked up in a BMI number.

"In older men especially, we should not just be measuring weight, but also their waist circumference and their muscle mass as measured by mid-arm muscle circumference," lead study author Dr. S. Goya Wannamethee told Reuters Health. He said the findings underscore the importance of life-long fitness, especially in the abdominal area.

And how do men achieve this? Wannamethee said it's a combination of diet--low calorie, low saturated fat and low alcohol--along with regular physical activity. "The key message is 'keep active' all the way to the end," he told Reuters Health. The study findings were published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
source: Netscape.com


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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

How 5 Personality Traits Change With Age

Conventional wisdom has long held that our personalities--largely governed by five key characteristics dubbed "The Big Five"--are genetic and pretty much set in stone by the time we turn 30. That may not be true.

After conducting an online study of 130,000 people aged 21 to 60, researchers at Stanford University, led by Sanjay Srivastava, say those key personality characteristics change throughout our lives.

"The Big Five" personality characteristics that are not dependent on mood are:
Conscientiousness
Agreeableness
Neuroticism
Openness
Extroversion

So how do we change with age? "We found a mixture of different patterns of how people change," Srivastava told New Scientist. "On average people were getting better at dealing with the ups and downs of life. In particular they were more responsive and more caring [with age]."

This is how our personalities tend to change with age:

  • Conscientiousness: Our ability to handle tasks and our organizational skills grow dramatically in our 20s and continue to improve as we age. The initial growth in our 20s is likely due to new work and family commitments.
  • Agreeableness: Our warmth, generosity, and helpfulness make the biggest improvement in our 30s and 40s; like conscientiousness, changes in agreeableness are probably due to new work and family commitments.
  • Neuroticism: Worry and our sense of instability actually decrease with age for women--but not for men.
  • Openness: Our desire to try new experiences declines slightly with age for both genders.
  • Extroversion: Our need to seek social support declines slightly for women as they age, but changes little in men.

What's the takeaway? On average, we get better as we get older. We care more about work, family, and our responsibilities. At the same time, we become less open to meeting new people. Women, but not men, worry less and as they age. "People are getting better at things as they age," Srivastava told Reuters. "They're not becoming grumpy old men."

The study findings, which are considered quite controversial, were published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. Paul Costa Jr., a researcher with the National Institute on Aging who has done pioneering work with the ''big five'' model, told USA Today that he is critical of the study. Instead of major personality changes after age 30, he thinks we only see ''nuanced'' changes.
source: Netscape.com



The Age of Miracles: Embracing the New Midlife
by Marianne Williamson
In our ability to rethink our lives lies our greatest power to change them. What we have called "middle age" need not be seen as a turning point toward death. It can be viewed as a magical turning point toward life as we've never known it, if we allow ourselves the power of an independent imagination-thought-forms that don't flow in a perfunctory manner from ancient assumptions merely handed down to us, but rather flower into new archetypal images of a humanity just getting started at 45 or 50.

What we've learned by that time, from both our failures as well as our successes, tends to have humbled us into purity. When we were young, we had energy but we were clueless about what to do with it. Today, we have less energy, perhaps, but we have far more understanding of what each breath of life is for. And now at last, we have a destiny to fulfill-not a destiny of a life that's simply over, but rather a destiny of a life that is finally truly lived.

Midlife is not a crisis; it's a time of rebirth. It's not a time to accept your death; it's a time to accept your life-and to finally, truly live it, as you and you alone know deep in your heart it was meant to be lived.

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Saturday, March 22, 2008

Most Erotic Part of the Female Body Is...

...something men notice and often use to determine whether they think a woman is beautiful or not: a slim waist.

A slim waist has been the hallmark of an attractive woman throughout hundreds of years of history, according to a study led by Dr. Devendra Singh from the University of Texas. He maintains that a woman's waist-to-hip ratio is a key factor in attracting men, even more than breast size or facial appearance.

For evidence, Singh points to literature. Being slim is the most common way an author praises a beautiful woman. He analyzed more than 345,000 British and American writings from the 16th to the 18th centuries, as well as some Indian and Chinese romantic and erotic poetry from the 1st to 6th centuries.

"The common historical assumption in the social sciences has been that the standards of beauty are arbitrary, solely culturally determined and in the eye of the beholder," Singh told the BBC News. "The finding that the writers describe a small waist as beautiful suggests instead that this body part--a known marker of health and fertility--is a core feature of feminine beauty that transcends ethnic differences and cultures." He did admit that the breasts were mentioned the most frequently in literature, but it was waistlines that were predominantly linked to attractiveness.

Why are men attracted to a slim waist? Dr. Piers Cornelissen, a psychologist at the University of York in the United Kingdom, told the BBC that the sexual attractiveness of the curve between slim waist and hips may be due to a liking for well-fed women rather than a subtle sign of fertility.

Using mathematical equations, he separated the amount of the "curve" between waist and hip which is due to simple fat deposits, and that due to other factors such as bone structure and the effects of sex hormones. "When we break apart that 'curviness,' it is almost impossible to find an effect for waist-hip ratio that is independent of effects such as body fat percentage."

How do you compute your waist-to-hip ratio? Use a measuring tape to determine your waist and hip measurements. Measure your hip circumference at it's widest part, and measure your waist circumference at the belly button or just above it. Pull out your calculator and divide the waist circumference by the hip circumference or use an online waist-to-hip ratio calculator to run the numbers.

What is the ideal waist-to-hip ratio for your good health?

  • Women should aim for 0.85 or lower.
  • Men should aspire to 0.90 or lower.
    Higher numbers represent a higher heart attack risk.
--From the Editors at Netscape

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Friday, March 21, 2008

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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Ageless: The Naked Truth about Bioidentical Hormones

Taking Charge of Your Own Health

"To remain oblivious to the hidden regenerative processes inside your body will cause you to die unnecessarily young."
- Ray Kurzweil and Terry Grossman, MD, Fantastic Voyage

Five years have passed, and as of this writing I have now been happily pronounced cancer-free. What a relief. No longer does each ache and pain trigger a fear in me of "Oh God, is that 'it' coming back again?"

Cancer does that to you. It's an inner nagging, a constant reminder that there could be something bigger than yourself lurking out there in the shadows, sitting back, like a predator, deciding when and if it cares to strike again. Now, finally, I can release that fear. The predator has been locked up, in prison, hopefully never to be let out again.

Along the way in this war I have been fighting have come the blessings. I am truly loved by those who mean the most to me. They showed me this over and over during this time. Through it all, I learned about my own strength and courage. I didn't know I had it in me to buck the system by choosing unconventional therapies and doing it my way. But you see, I was never able to wrap my arms around the "standard of care" set forth by Western medicine as the way to treat cancer.

When I was diagnosed with cancer, I needed to be emotionally strong to fight the battle. To help with that, I needed to be hormonally in balance. It is hard to be in a fighting mood when you are hormonally depressed. Balanced hormones keep your emotions in check and I believe (based on my research) are the most effective way to prevent cell proliferation (cancer).Unfortunately, Western medicine's "standard of care" believes that taking away all hormones prevents disease. I believed differently, so I didn't want to go off my bioidentical hormones.

Nor did I want to undergo chemotherapy. You see, I do not believe in the "poison" theory of using chemotherapy. It is my belief that an environment of balanced hormones prevents disease. This is reinforced by many of the doctors interviewed in this book. For one thing, it ablates, or takes away, hormones. Chemotherapy does kill cancer cells, but it also kills the immune system. Without a strong immune system, cancer has a perfect opportunity to proliferate. We need a strong immune system, and balanced hormones to prevent disease. So it didn't make sense to me to "take away" hormones as a means to kill cancer.

As I now see it, there are two ways to fight cancer: build up or destroy. Western medicine's standard of care is to destroy. Well-meaning though it may be, the idea of chemicalizing myself, destroying everything, and hoping my health would come back, coupled with the instructions to give up my hormone therapy, was not appealing.

I decided to approach cancer by "building up." This took courage, because it is daunting to go against the course recommended by one's doctor. But because of the books I write and my understanding of the hormonal connection to health, I had a lot of information. I understood that hormonal balance is key to health and vitality. My decision to go against the standard of care was probably easier for me than it would be for other women not armed with the same information. I approached my cancer through balanced bioidentical hormone replacement and complemented this replacement with Iscador, an anthroposophic medicine whose function is to strengthen and build up the immune system so that disease cannot attack and invade.

I believe this was the best decision of my life. Aside from the discomfort of injecting myself with Iscador every other day for these five years, my health has never been better. I have not had so much as a cold during this time; upon my last checkup, my immune system was so high that my doctor was ecstatic. He said he had never seen an immune system this strong in any of his adult patients. That information was able to put all my fears to rest. How could a life-threatening illness get past an immune system this strong? Great. I had done it. I beat it. I did it my way, with my body almost intact.

So you can imagine my surprise (five years and one month after my initial diagnosis) when my gynecologist told me that I had a pre-precancerous condition (not cancer, not even precancer) growing in my uterus and that in order to prevent possible severe problems down the road, I would need to have my uterus removed.

Why was the sleeping giant trying to rear its ugly head again? Luckily we caught this before it became cancer, yet it was serious enough to force the removal of an organ. I do not take the removal of any body part lightly. What was wrong? I have thought about this a lot. As a teenage mother, I was given my first major chemical, a shot to dry up my milk, and was encouraged to feed my baby Similac formula. In chapter 5 I will discuss at length the protective aspects of breast-feeding and prolactin production. Second, at age eighteen I was put on the early high-dose birth control pills and stayed on them for twenty-two years. Unknowingly, like so many women of my generation, these chemicals put me into a false menopause. All those years of chemicalization were dangerous to my health. Add to this scenario stress and environmental assault and a brutal childhood and you have a recipe for disaster.

The ninth year of bioidentical hormone replacement, things started going wonky (this is my term—don't expect your doctors to use it!). I had breakthrough bleeding, and then after a while I was bleeding continuously. Something was wrong, obviously. You must understand that because bioidentical hormone replacement therapy (BHRT) is such a new science, all the medical professionals working in this arena are learning as fast as they can, but with each year we all learn more. At this point in my BHRT, I had not heard of "rhythmic cycling," which I will explain in great detail later.

In the way I was taking hormones on a static dose, my estrogen was not rising and falling as it once did in nature, and my progesterone was not rising and falling as it did when I was making a full complement of hormones in my youth. (See the diagram.) Because of this, my receptor sites were not opening to receive the progesterone, so the estrogen lining in my uterus kept building and building. Over time, like a motor on "rev," this thinkening caused excessive bleeding and sent an alarm to my brain that "all was not well," that this human being was no longer able to reproduce (which is why, according to nature, we exist).

Because I was bleeding constantly, I was not ovulating. Thus I was not a reproductive person, according to my brain. You must understand that the object of bioidentical hormone replacement therapy is to fool the brain into thinking I can still make a baby, even though I have no eggs left. As a result of not having a rhythm, and of the thickening and the bleeding, severe hyperplasia, along with adenomyosis (leaks in my uterine lining), came about. This excessive bleeding and hyperplasia created a perfect scenario for cancer, so I had no choice but to remove my uterus, thus removing my problem.

I now feel that had I not been chemicalized by the "dry-up" shot, and if I had not been on strong birth control pills, and if I had been cycling in a rhythmic fashion, this problem might not have occurred. This is a theory that I have embraced, as have several of the doctors I interviewed for this book. As you will also see in these interviews, there are other doctors who do not agree with rhythmic cycling or with cycling in general. My job is to give you all the information from these professionals so you can draw your own conclusions. I am not a doctor, but I am a very informed layperson. I will explain rhythmic cycling in detail in chapter 5, and you can then decide what makes the most sense to you. I am merely the messenger.

Losing my uterus caused me to do a lot of searching. For years, I was unknowingly hormonally imbalanced, not just as a perimenopausal and menopausal woman, but also as a young woman. Unfortunately, I never realized hormonal imbalance was the problem.

Without hormones or imbalanced hormones, we lose any grip on feeling "normal." Without hormones, life quality is greatly diminished. Without hormones, a woman is at her weakest physically. Without hormones, disease is allowed to proliferate because the brain perceives that the body is no longer reproductive; therefore, nature wants to "eliminate" you to make way for those who are healthy and reproductive.

Loss of hormones is not to be taken lightly. Having no hormones is like having bad premenstrual syndrome (PMS) every day of your life. You are not in control of your emotions, nor are you in control of the cruel physical manifestations of the loss of hormones. Couple this with the stress of having and fighting cancer, and (to me) it doesn't make sense to be without hormones.

You see, we may have changed with the passing of time, but the biology inside us has not. Nature has a job to do, and the brain was hard-wired at the begining of time and doesn't know anything else. A healthy woman is hormonally balanced. We can't "outthink" nature. This never works, no matter how hard we try to come up with something better.

Women remain confused about hormones and in some cases terrified of hormone replacement; one day, headlines in the newspapers praise hormone replacement therapy (HRT); the next day, the headlines are screaming that HRT will kill us.

The truth is, despite the widespread use of synthetic hormone brands such as Premarin and Provera, these drugs have always been associated with cancer. The first cancer linked with synthetic hormone replacement was cancer of the uterus lining (endometrium).

The most recent resurfacing of the negatives associated with synthetic hormones and cancer came from a government-sponsored study titled the Women's Health Initiative. This study was supposed to last 8.5 years, but it was stopped after only 5.2 years because the risks of using Premarin and Provera outweighed the benefits. Breast cancer was just one of the increased risks discovered. Additionally, the study concluded that synthetic hormone replacement therapy protects neither your bones nor your heart. Ironically, bone and heart protection were two of the primary benefits once used by doctors as selling points to get women to fill their prescriptions for these drugs.

The Women's Health Initiative Study hoped to show decreases in

*breast cancer

*stroke

*pulmonary embolism

*colorectal cancer

*endometrial cancer

*hip fracture

*death due to any cause

The actual outcome results were shocking:

*29 percent increase in coronary heart disease

*41 percent increase in strokes

*22 percent increase in cardiovascular disease

*2,100 percent (yes, this is correct) increase in pulmonary embolism (lung blood clots)

*26 percent increase in breast cancer

So much for synthetic hormones! These statistics alone should convince you right away of the negative effects of these so-called synthetic hormones.

Those of us who were on the original birth control pills for any length of time were actually on synthetic hormones- strong synthetic hormones. Any wonder why women of our generation are under siege from an epidemic of breast and ovarian cancers? There is a link, and you'll learn more about it in this book.

Read on and see if you relate to my scenario: As I said, for twenty-two years, I was on synthetic birth control pills, the original ones that were very strong. I even manipulated my periods with them, if I didn't want to have a period on a particular weekend. I just didn't realize what was in those birth control pills, nor did I understand the dangers of messing with nature.

I did not realize that having only a two-day bleed meant that I was not ovulating fully. At the time, I thought it was great to have such a light period. I did not realize that the importance of ovulation in the human female body is to let the brain know that I was well, healthy, and reproductive. As far as my brain was concerned, I was not reproductive because I was not fully ovulating. An ovulating woman is a reproductive woman.

To believe that the body is not fully ovulating is a dangerous assumption for the brain to make. If the brain perceives us as unable to reproduce, its job, biologically speaking, is to try to eliminate us to make room for the reproductive ones. This is the nature in us. This is the template that was programmed in us from ancient times. Thus, this hormonal imbalance that I unknowingly put myself in was creating a backdrop for cancer. Why? Because we all have cancer in us, but as long as we are hormonally balanced, the brain perceives us as young, strong, and healthy. If we become imbalanced, this signals to the brain that the reproductive system is no longer in working order, and it is in this scenario that the cancer has a chance to come into being.

You see, cancer proliferates in an environment of hormonal imbalance. This is why I believe that Western medicine's standard of care, well-meaning as it is, is treating us incorrectly. Western medicine is looking at everything except the obvious. Western medicine is trying to poison the cancer out of us, further wreaking havoc with our hormonal systems.

Then, to prevent recurrence, we are given hormone ablation drugs such as tamoxifen or Femara, which interfere with the body's ability to read the hormones in some parts of the body. Plus, for many women these drugs cause horrible side effects. To me, it doesn't make sense to take any drug that prevents new hormones from being made in our bodies or to kill off any of the little bit of hormones we might have left. Why has Western medicine been trying to outthink nature? We are given fake hormones that don't replicate exactly what our bodies make naturally, and doctors are expecting them to work in the same way or better. It hasn't worked. Look around. Are the women you know doing well from midlife on? Most everyone has complaints, from mild to severe. No wonder women are in such bad shape.

Once you understand the importance of your brain perceiving the body as reproductive—our "brain template"—it will be easier for you to make decisions for yourself. We assume that the professionals who are taking care of us know what they are doing. But they can't know what they haven't been taught, and unless you find yourself a doctor such as the ones

Copyright © 2006 by Suzanne Somers

Excerpted from

Ageless: The Naked Truth about Bioidentical Hormones

Can you really feel better as you get older?

Is aging without illness possible?

Is your own internal fountain of youth waiting to be discovered?

Yes, yes, and YES! says Suzanne Somers, the bestselling author of The Sexy Years. It can all be true when you take advantage of the new science of antiaging medicine—a revolutionary approach to achieving the ageless life.

Suzanne Somers introduced millions of women to bioidentical hormone replacement therapy and changed the way we look at menopause with her groundbreaking book, The Sexy Years, and the overwhelming media response to its publication. Now, in Ageless, Suzanne introduces an inspiring, medically validated approach to reversing the aging process and maintaining a healthy, vibrant, mentally sharp, sexually active life—while building the body’s natural defenses against age-related diseases.

Ageless is jam-packed with new, updated information on bioidentical hormone replacement and antiaging that will change your life forever. Suzanne talks about:

• Antiaging medicine and how it can help work against the environmental assault that is making us sick, including how to detox the body of harmful pollutants and chemicals and strengthen our weakest glands and organs

• Menopause, which can become an enjoyable passage once the body is in perfect hormonal sync with bioidentical hormone replacement therapy

• The dangers of perimenopause and how women can treat it

• Why so many hysterectomies are unnecessary, how birth control pills may have contributed to the rise of hysterectomies, and how to restore your body to perfect hormonal balance after havingone

• How andropause is a real condition for men, and how men can lose weight, regain their youthful physiques, and restore heath, energy, and sexuality, all through bioidentical HRT

• The importance of sleep and the healing work that nature does during this time to balance hormones and increase energy

In this “antiaging bible,” Suzanne brings together prominent, Western-trained antiaging doctors who are at the forefront of a medical revolution to show how the traditional medical approach is woefully inadequate and outdated. Its standard of care has been to treat all symptoms with drugs, but in Ageless you will find out how this approach does not make us better. With antiaging medicine you can heal your body rather than keep a chronic condition at bay with drugs. Ageless shows you how to keep your “insides” young, and how this manifests on the outside.

What could be better than having your doctor tell you that you have the bones of a twenty-year-old, or the heart of a thirty-year-old? You can be young on the inside if you follow the advice in Ageless. Suzanne reveals the secrets to youthfulness that everyone can achieve and shows us all how to live the ageless life!

How young is your energy?
“The second half of your life can be better than your first half. A better life, a healthier life, a life of youthful energy comes from embracing antiaging medicine, and bioidentical hormone replacement is a big component. . . . The second half of life can be wonderful. I know it because I am living it. This new approach to health gives you back your lean body, shining hair, and thick skin, provided you are eating correctly and exercising in moderation. This new medicine allows your brain to work perfectly and offers the greatest defense against cancer, heart attack, and Alzheimer’s disease. Don’t you want that?” —From the Introduction



Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Murad Resurgence®

Restore Hormonally Aging Skin

Widely acknowledged as one of the country’s foremost authorities on skincare, Howard Murad, M.D. has devoted his life to the science of internal and external skincare.
A board-certified dermatologist with a thriving practice in El Segundo, California, a trained pharmacist, and Associate Clinical Professor of Dermatology at UCLA, Dr. Murad has built a patient base of nearly 50,000 people.

Over the years, treating such a wide variety of individuals presenting every conceivable kind of skin condition, gave him direct insight into what his patients wanted and needed to care for their skin at home. This inspired him to develop his own line of skincare products. Putting theory into practice, Dr. Murad developed targeted formulas to alleviate even the most frustrating skin concerns. Murad® skincare’s success is no accident, for the results speak for themselves.

Murad Resurgence® is the first comprehensive line of products formulated exclusively to help revitalize and rebuild hormonally aging skin.

Clinically proven to increase skin firmness by up to 42% in just 10 minutes! Click here



Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Product of the day: Ped Egg

Ped Egg
Ped Egg

Rejuvenate your feet
Your feet go through a lot during the course of a day. As a matter of fact, your feet take the brunt everything that you do. From walking to bending to lifting and sitting, all the pressure that we put our bodies through, eventually end up at our feet.
As a result, your feet can become try and tired, with worn out or dead skin and calluses too. Your feet can look tired and feel rough, which can make even walking a painful and uncomfortable exercise to undertake.
Tired feet deserve the Ped Egg - the revolutionary foot file that can smooth rough skin on your feet and get rid of calluses and other abrasions - leaving your feet feeling soft, smooth and sexy!

How it works
The Ped Egg is a simple foot file that uses precise and high-tech microdermabrasion technology that removes calluses and dead skin. Once you've removed the dead skin, the emery pads featured on the Ped Egg smooth and pamper your feet, creating that silky soft, sexy feeling that looks great!
Just use the Ped Egg whenever you want to give your tired feet that relaxing spa treatment, and within a few minutes, you'll have incredibly smooth and comfortable feet that will leave you feeling relaxed and rejuvenated!

Great features!
Your Ped Egg has excellent features that make it the perfect pampering accessory for your sore and tired feet:
* Compact size for easy portability
* Storage compartment to collect extra skin shavings
* Safe to the touch
* Incredibly easy to use



Monday, March 17, 2008

If You Sleep This Little, You'll Die Sooner

Turn off the TV. Shut down the computer. Go to bed. Now. People who regularly sleep less than the recommended seven to eight hours a night are more likely to die earlier than those who get more shuteye. But just because a little is good doesn't mean a lot is better. People who sleep more than eight hours have a significantly higher risk of dying early, too, reports Reuters Health of a new study from University College London.

For 17 years, the researchers, led by Dr. Jane E. Ferrie, followed nearly 10,000 adults in the United Kingdom who ranged in age from 35 to 55 years old. They found that those who slept less were more likely to die of heart disease or stroke than those who regularly slept seven to eight hours a night, and those who slept nine or more hours a night were twice as likely to die from both cardiovascular and non-cardiovascular causes.

Although the team did not pinpoint the reasons for the findings, previous research has shown that chronic sleep deprivation can wreak havoc on the cardiovascular system. When we sleep, our bodies are given a chance to recoup from the day, which means both blood pressure and heart rate drop, easing strain on the heart. Ferrie told Reuters Health that some previous research has linked sleep deprivation to poorer appetite control and blood-sugar regulation, which can affect body weight and the risk of type 2 diabetes, which in turn can boost the odds of developing heart disease.

It's also not known why those who sleep longer than eight hours have a higher risk of dying early, but Ferrie said some illnesses, such as cancer or depression, can cause fatigue. What they found was startling. Those who were sleeping more than eight hours a night at the beginning of the study but were getting less sleep later on had double the risk of dying from both cardiovascular and non-cardiovascular causes. Ferrie explained that the study findings suggest that the risk of an early death increases when sleep times veer from the "ideal" seven to eight hours. "Burning the candle at both ends or sleeping for nine or more hours is not ideal over prolonged periods in terms of good health," Ferrie told Reuters Health.

The study findings were published in the medical journal Sleep.
source: Netscape.com


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Sudden Change© skincare

Beauty may only be skin deep but beautiful skin goes way beyond the Epidermis.

Nutrition, hydration and exercise are the key to good health. Our state of health effects all aspects of our
bodies including the skin. Here we touch on the importance of good health and how it relates to a healthy,
youthful-looking you!


Sudden Change Intensive Facial Serum

Smoothes Away Deep Lines & Wrinkles
Improves Skin Tone

  • Results in Just 7 Days
  • with Green Tea Super Antioxidant EGCG Formula
  • For All Skin Types
  • Results Guaranteed

Green Tea Super Antioxidant EGCG Formula + Peptides

Intensive Facial Serum in only 7 days visibly starts regenerating the skin's appearance with the breakthrough skin benefits of active green tea combined with special peptides. One of the secrets - this Serum helps to quickly advance younger cells to the skin's surface revealing the skin's most youthful appearance. This technologically advanced Intensive Facial Serum is formulated specifically for the face and neck area.

Dr. Stephen Hsu, the acclaimed Molecular/Cell Biologist with the Medical College of Georgia, developed this amazing Intensive Facial Serum with a patent-pending formula. Dr. Hsu's lifework is researching green tea and making available his discoveries to the medical community and green tea benefits to consumers in this Intensive Facial Serum and other Sudden Change products.


Nutrition & Hydration
As most people already know, a healthy diet is key to overall good health. A well-balanced eating plan provides the nutrients, minerals, fats, proteins and carbohydrates that keep the body functioning in a healthy and efficient way. Like any living creature, the human body works as a whole. Not as individual parts. For example; the more efficiently your lungs ingest their supply of oxygen, the better supply is delivered to your blood cells which then carry it to the organs to utilize it, one of those organs being your skin!

Antioxidants, like EGCG found in Green Tea, can also be very helpful in preventing damage done to cells by free radicals. They can help to protect the skin from the harmful effects caused by the sun and other enemies of the skin. Green Tea helps speed the movement of younger cells to the skin's surface increasing radiance.

For total well being, you should consider structuring your diet according to the “Food Guide Pyramid” from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This way you are assured you are receiving all the proper nutrients you need for your body to function optimally.

We could not exist without water. It is vital for all our internal organs, bones, blood production and digestion. Some of the benefits to keeping yourself well hydrated are:

* Helps to regulate the bodies’ temperature.
* Helps to convert food to energy.
* Aids the body in the absorption of nutrients.
* Flushes waste, toxins and chemical substances from the body.

As you can see, You Are What You Eat And Your Skin Reflects It!

Exercise
Exercise isn’t just for trimming down your thighs and buttocks!

Research has shown that exercise increases circulation to the skin, delivering important nutrients, while washing away toxins — like cigarette smoke and pollutants.

A good work-out has also been shown to create ideal collagen-producing conditions. Collagen is the support fibers that keep lines and wrinkles from forming, creating an anti-aging effect on the skin.

Cleansing The Face
Always use mild soap and water when cleaning your skin. Avoid cleansers labeled “anti-bacterial”. They can strip the skin of its protective acidity. Rinse thoroughly and pat dry.


Sudden Change Gaba-Freeze Creme

Up to 90% Reduction of Lines & Crow's Feet

  • GABA - The active ingredient found in the world's most expensive wrinkle creams.
  • Visible Results In Minutes Guaranteed...

Visible Results in Minutes
For Lines & Crows Feet

This instant, line relaxing GABA formula is immediately effective in dramatically diminishing the appearance of forehead lines, crow's feet and frown lines up to 90%. Age-defying GABA - a naturally occurring muscle relaxing agent combines with micronized line fillers & ultra-fine light refractors to help complete this treatment for smoother, younger-looking skin. Immediately after applying GABA-FREEZE Creme you may feel a wonderful, cool sensation as the product is working.

Moisturizing
After cleansing the face, it is imperative to moisturize. Moisturizers help to retain skin's moisture while relieving dryness and minor irritations. Sudden Change® Intensive Facial Serum and Sudden Change® Gaba-Freeze Creme not only moisturizes but have added benefits as well.

Dr. Stephen Hsu, acclaimed Molecular/Cell Biologist with the Medical College of Georgia, developed the unique Sudden Change® Intensive Facial Serum. This Serum delivers the Super Antioxidant Green Tea along with Peptides to help reveal a younger you! While moisturizing, it advances younger skin cells to the surface and reveals a more youthful appearance.

To help reduce forehead lines, crow’s feet and lines around the mouth, Sudden Change® Gaba-Freeze Creme is designed to work in minutes, while delivering age-defying Gaba - a naturally occurring muscle relaxing agent. This formula is immediately effective in dramatically diminishing lines up to 90%. Use it daily, for a cumulatives wrinkle diminishing effect.

Sudden Change® offers special products for your particular beauty needs: from:

* The eyes
* The lips
* The brow area

Your skin is a living, breathing organ that requires nourishment, hydration and exercise along with moisturizers that protect and repair. Proper care of your skin will give you a more youthful look and glow for years to come.

When you start using Sudden Change®,
you'll notice A Change for The Better.