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Sensitive skin is often blamed for breakouts and itchy skin. This article discusses the qualities of sensitive skin and how these can be determined. This article also provides information and tips on the proper care of sensitive skin designed to reduce sensitivity and increase skin resilience.

5 Sensitive Skin Care Tips

5 Sensitive Skin Care TipsA lot of people claim that they have sensitive skin when they break out after using a certain product or were exposed to the sun. However, most of than not, the culprits behind the blotchy skin and zits are using inappropriate products for one's skin type and bad skin habits. If you are one of the many who break out or itch after sun exposure or using a product, it is a good idea to determine if sensitive skin is really the cause or something else. How to tell if you have sensitive skin?Generally, sensitive skin is thin with visible broken capillaries under the skin's surface. Sensitive skin also has fine pores. When exposed to moderate changes in temperature, sensitive skin reddens easily, whether from cold or heat. Sensitive skin tends to rash easily when exposed to dirt or even moderate strength skin care products. If your skin manifests these signs, chances are high that you really have sensitive skin. For a thorough skin assessment, a visit to a dermatologist is in order. Since caring for sensitive skin can be quite difficult, it is advisable to limit the use of skin care products. Generally, simple skin care regimens are more effective on sensitive skin since it prevents product overload. Sensitive skin care relies on strengthening the skin to reduce sensitivity and increase tolerance. How to care for sensitive skin? 1. Hydrate your skin.Sensitive skin is prone to dryness which can lead to increased sensitivity. Drinking eight or more glasses of water and applying a lightweight and hypoallergenic moisturizer a day can help restore your skin's moisture or lipid barrier that acts as defense mechanism against allergens. 2. Eat skin-friendly food.Fruits, vegetables, and other water-rich foods are essential in correcting skin imbalances. The vitamin, mineral, and water content of these foods hydrate your skin and restore its health. On the other hand, eating spicy food and drinking alcohol and caffeinated drinks can increase your skin's sensitivity. 3. Limit sun exposure.Sun exposure can cause sensitive skin to redden and burn easily. Before going out, apply sun protection on your face using sunscreen and on your body with sunblock lotion. You can extend the protection to your lips to prevent them from darkening. Applying an SPF-rich lip balm under your lipstick or gloss can help protect your lips. Umbrellas, sunglasses, and hats protect your body, eyes, and face from overexposure to the sun. 4. Protect skin at all times.Even when you are indoors, your skin still needs protection. If you are staying in an airconditioned room or one with forced heating, apply a lightweight moisturizer frequently. this will prevent your skin from drying out due to the extreme temperatures. 5. Avoid products with artificial colorants and synthetic fragrances.Colorants and fragrances are added to skin care products only for increasing marketing appeal. Your skin do not actually benefit from these additions. Often, they even cause allergic reactions and increase your skin's sensitivity. Aside from these tips, it is also a good idea to switch to skin care products that are specially formulated for sensitive skin. A thorough skin assessment and consultation with a dermatologist can reveal to you skin care techniques and products that can help strengthen your skin and minimize its sensitivity.

Exercise and Diet as Pain Relief Therapy

Exercise and Diet as Pain Relief Therapy

To avoid physical pain, most people usually avoid engaging in strenuous activities and vigorous movements of the body. However, inactivity may actually worsen the condition and result in more pain in the long run. Since the human body is designed to be in motion regardless of your health condition, making your body inactive will lead to muscle degeneration. Through regular exercise, people can avoid pain or, at least, have an effective means of attaining pain relief therapy.Once the muscles start to deteriorate, other problems may soon develop such as diminishing bone density, depression, and a weakened heart. On the contrary, regular exercise can help keep joints flexible and strong. Moreover, physical activity promotes pain relief by releasing mood-enhancing chemicals in the body that help deal with arthritic pain and lessen pain perception.The three types of exercise recommended for arthritis patients involves the following: * Flexibility Workouts * Cardiovascular Workouts * Strength Conditioning Flexibility workouts involve stretches that can help enhance range of motion. Cardiovascular includes aerobic workouts, walking, water exercises, and cycling. Strength conditioning, includes isometric or isotonic workouts. Isometric workouts are static exercises that involve applying resistance without moving the joint. An example of isometric workout is pressing your hands against the wall while standing. It works out your chest muscle without joint movement. Isotonic workouts, on the other hand, use the full range of motion such as bicep curls and leg extensions.Different exercises work for different individuals. A certain exercise that works for you may not work for your buddy. Always remember to apply appropriate effort in proper form to avoid further injury and minimize pain. Consult a doctor or a well-trained fitness instructor before engaging in a fitness program. While regular exercise promotes natural pain relief by releasing mood-enhancing chemicals in the body that reduce perception of pain, being overweight can takes its toll on the joints due to the excess poundage they have to carry. A variety of weight loss programs are available everywhere but a nutritionally-balanced diet, besides regular physical activity, is a proven method for weight loss.On the other hand, weight loss with a poor diet may result to being underweight that leads to inactivity. When the hormone levels are off, it can aggravate pain. While limiting intake of animal protein and saturated fat is ideally healthy, people need not become vegetarians to avail of pain relief benefits from proper nutrition. Instead, beef up on foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Eating whole grains and organically produced foods rich in fiber substantially help reduce your consumption of carcinogens and other harmful chemicals usually present in processed foods. These chemicals in preservatives may negatively stimulate the immune system.Some studies are exploring on the pain relief properties of two dietary supplements, chondroitin and glucosamine, in relation to osteoarthritis. However, there is much research to be done on their long-term safety and effectiveness. While chondroitin side effects may be rare, it may include headache, motor uneasiness, euphoria, hives, rash, photo-sensitivity, hair loss, and breathing difficulties. Those with bleeding disorders or taking blood thinners should consult with their doctor before taking the supplement.Some glucosamine products may be made with shellfish, and may cause adverse reaction in people with shellfish allergies. Side effects include upset stomach, drowsiness, insomnia, headache, skin reactions, sun sensitivity, and nail toughening.

Are Contact Lenses Right For You?

Are Contact Lenses Right For You?

If you need vision correction and are wondering if contact lenses are a good alternative for you, there are a few things you need to take into consideration.Think about your lifestyle. For example, do you participate in any sports? If you jog, do aerobics, or other jarring sports, you will likely find glasses cumbersome. They will have a tendency to slip and fall off, or you will have to purchase a strap to keep them on. Even then, they may fog up when you sweat or sweat may drip onto them. Contact lenses will save you all this trouble. You will be able to see clearly and wont have to worry about them falling off. If you play contact sports, you may not be able to wear glasses, or you may have to invest in goggles large enough to cover them, or even more costly, prescription safety glasses. If you are a swimmer however, contact lenses may not be a good choice, as you could lose them if you open your eyes underwater.Another factor to bear in mind is maintenance. Glasses will get smudged and will need to be cleaned occasionally to optimize your ability to see through them, but keeping contact lenses clean is critical not only for your vision, but for your health as well. If you dont clean your lenses properly or often enough, you can put yourself at risk for an eye infection that could possibly leave you with a vision loss that cannot be corrected. Using disposable contact lenses can make taking care of your lenses easier, but you still will need to make sure that your hands are very clean before putting them in, and take care of them properly if you take your lenses out and put them back in for any reason. If you dont think that you can add any steps to your daily hygiene routine, then contact lenses may not be the best choice.Quality of vision correction is one area where contact lenses are superior to glasses no matter who you are. Since the lens part of contact lenses sits directly on your eye and covers the seeing part of your eye completely, you will have corrected vision all around, including to the top, bottom, and sides, whereas with glasses, there is no correction for your peripheral vision. That can be problematic for activities like driving, or if the quality of your vision is important in your profession.Speak to your eye care health professional about your options. They can explain the pros and cons of wearing glasses or contacts, and help you make the best choice for you.

3 Lessons From The Biggest Loser

3 Lessons From The Biggest Loser

All over the world, night after night, millions of people are riveted to their TV sets - but not to watch the latest soap, or CSI. Not to watch Jay Leno or Sex in the City. Not to see who outwits, outlasts and outplays others in Survivor. No - they are spellbound by the efforts of a small band of obese people trying to overcome the effects of years of overeating.It's not surprising that for so many people this is compulsive viewing. Obesity is the new epidemic. Fat children lumber around school playgrounds while their overweight mothers fill shopping carts with wrong choices. Then... they sit down at night to watch The Biggest Loser. They see dramatic weight loss and startling new body shapes beginning to emerge. They want the same results - and they begin to think it might be possible.But who has four or five hours a day to work out? Who can afford a personal trainer several times a week? And who has the luxury of their own personal adviser on calorie content and smart food choices? The answer is: not many people. But you have to remember that this is television: it's a false situation. As the players keep reminding themselves and the viewers: "This is a GAME. You have to make the most of your time here - it's going to be so much harder out in the real world."IS it harder in the real world? Probably. But you can take lessons away from watching this reality show. You can make it work for you, as well as for the contestants. Here are three practical and useful lessons you can put to use immediately.1. Put Weight Loss First.In the Biggest Loser household WEIGHT LOSS COMES FIRST. Make it come first in your household, too. Sounds simple, doesn't it? It is. In fact, so simple that many people just overlook it. They try to fit exercise and meal planning around everything else in their lives, instead of making it a priority.Think: what is most important: getting the weight off, and becoming fit enough to put years on your life - or watching another TV show? Sit down with a pen and paper and allot at least one hour a day to planning meals, recording what you eat, and doing some form of exercise. You've still got 23 hours left to do everything else!2. E is for Exercise - and Enjoy!What else do you notice in the Biggest Loser household? The more they exercise, the more they seem to enjoy it. Oh sure, they grunt and they groan; they sweat and they complain. But as the weeks go on, you'll hear them say things like: "I never thought I'd say that I look forward to working out - but now don't feel right if a day goes past without exercise!"The secret to enjoying exercise is finding what's right for YOU. If you don't really enjoy the gym, look for other forms of exercise. You need a mix of cardio and resistance training - but it doesn't have to be on machines. Walk, swim, dance, climb hills, push a wheelbarrow in the garden... there are endless choices that can be fun for you. Research what happens to various muscle groups - and to your heart - when you exercise, and pick activities that you will enjoy.3. Identify the Triggers.Emotions run high when the contestants have to face their demons. Weight gain is rarely from just a physical cause. If you keep a food diary, and faithfully record not only what you eat but when (and why) you eat it, you'll soon see a pattern of emotional eating. What are YOUR triggers? Boredom? Tiredness? Family arguments?Once you have identified these triggers, you can start working on strategies to defeat them. This can be as simple as challenging yourself every time you want food. ("Am I hungry - yes or no? If I'm not hungry, then why do I want to eat? Am I really just thirsty? If I'm running to the fridge because I'm upset, is there something else I can do to feel better? Is there a long-term solution that will fix this forever?" and so on.) If you're not yet ready to deal with the root cause, then be prepared with food that won't add to your problems with the resulting rolls of fat. Make sure that you have 'good' food at hand - but also food that you LIKE.These are just three of the lessons that anyone can take away from watching The Biggest Loser. And you'll have the satisfaction of knowing you did it all by yourself.

What You Need to Know Before Popping the Pill

In August of 1960, Enovid, the first contraceptive pill, was launched for sale in the USA. The mass-marketing of the drug was so successful that within one year of the products launch, over 1 million American women were using it. It was a revolutionary breakthrough in contraception. Pharmaceutical companies that made the drug promised to give women control over their reproductive cycle and free them from unwanted pregnancy. What the manufacturers failed to emphasize were the many and varied side-effects of birth control pills. Mental and physiological conditions experienced by women while using the Pill were downplayed by the pharmaceutical companies, and much of the literature accompanying the drug packaging inferred that many of these negative side-effects could not be directly attributed to the contraceptive pill.The Pill is the most popular type of birth control. However, women should be extra cautious before popping the Pill. Currently, there are many different brands of the pill and they come in packs of 21 or 28 pills. One pill is taken every day. The first 21 pills have a combination of synthetic estrogen and progesterone hormones. The Pill stops ovulation, preventing the ovaries from releasing eggs. It also thickens cervical mucus, making it harder for sperm to enter the uterus. The hormones in the pill prevent fertilization. Some women may not be able to take the pill because of the risk of serious health problems. Women who are over 35, those who smoke, or who have any of the following conditions below should not take the pill:History of heart attack or strokeBlood clotsUnexplained vaginal bleedingKnown or suspected cancerKnown or suspected pregnancyLiver diseaseAs the body adjusts to hormonal changes created by the pill, women often experience some minor side effects, including:Irregular bleeding or spottingNauseaBreast tendernessWeight gain and/or water retentionSpotty darkening of the skinMood changesSide effects of birth control pills usually disappear after 2-3 cycles. Depending on risk factors, women on the pill should have their blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar regularly monitored. Women who already have diabetes, high blood pressure, or raised cholesterol levels should thoroughly discuss the use of the pill with their doctor before starting on it. Certain kinds of migraines may make sufferers more at risk of strokes. Women with severe, frequent headaches should first consult a doctor before using the said contraceptive drug. The pill has been known to slightly raise the risk of both certain benign and malignant liver tumors, although these are rare. This drug has also long been suspected as a potential stimulant of breast cancer, although studies have yielded conflicting results. The current consensus seems to be that using birth control pills leads to a slightly higher risk of breast cancer, especially in women who start on the pill before the age of 20, although for all other women the risk of breast cancer drops to that of a non-user 10 years after a woman discontinues using the pill. Although long-term users of the pill may have a slightly higher rate of cervical cancer, the reason may have nothing to do with the drug's effects on the user's hormonal production. Rather, women who use the drug are much less likely to use barrier methods of birth control and thus leave themselves more open to sexually transmitted infections (STIs) that raise the risk of cervical cancer. It had been hoped that manufacturers and physicians can lower the side effects of birth control pills, studies have shown that newer pills are no safer for cardiovascular health than the second generation of pills. It is always safe to ask a health care professional before making a decision as to which birth control method is the right one for you. They can help make the birth control decision based on your personal concerns and lifestyle as well as your medical history. Ask your health care provider any questions especially regarding the "side effects of birth control pills" , as you may have concerns on any serious complications of a birth control method and the risk factors that are relevant to your case. Being aware of your medical options and alternatives can only benefit your health in the long run.

Keep Away From the Foods That Cause Gout

Gout is a form of arthritis that causes inflammation, pain, sourness and swelling of the joints, also reducing their mobility. It mostly it affects the joints of the lower body limbs, such as toes, heels, ankles and knees, but it can also affect the joints of the upper body. Gout sometimes affects skin and soft tissue like muscles and tendons, causing swelling and rigidity. There are many factors that contribute to the occurrence and the development of gout, such as genetic predisposition to the disease, renal insufficiency, inappropriate diet and lack of proper exercise. Among all these triggers of gout, the quantity and the type of food consumed seem to play a very important role. In the past, gout was referred to as the disease of kings, as it mostly affected rich people. The high incidence of gout among the rich, noble families in the past is explained by the fact that they had better access to expensive, exotic foods that in present are known to facilitate the development of the disease. Today, many people are still confronted with gout as a result of improper diet, unaware of the damage that some foods cause to the organism. Apart from foods that cause gout, another important factor in the development of the disease is obesity. Gout is mainly caused by the crystallization of a substance called uric acid in the bloodstream, causing arteries to block. In normal quantities, uric acid is neutral to the organism. However, when in excess, it may cause a lot of damage. Uric acid is a residual product formed in the synthesis of purine. Purine is a substance that resides in fat meats, fish, some dairy products and vegetables. Foods that cause gout are rich in saturated fats and purines, therefore contributing to the excessive secretion of uric acid. Among the "foods that cause gout" , the most dangerous are considered to be red meats and some fish. Beef, pork, lamb and seafood should be avoided when suffering from gout. Furthermore, healthy people should control their intake of such foods in order to prevent the acquiring of gout. Other foods like chicken meat, low dairy, grains, green vegetables and fruits are well tolerated among people who suffer from gout. In order to ameliorate the symptoms of gout, foods that cause gout should be excluded from the diet in favor of healthy food. Also, the consumption of alcohol should be reduced, as it increases the amount of uric acid produced by the organism. Smoking can aggravate the symptoms of gout too, slowing the natural process of healing and interfering in the right circulation of the blood. By drinking plenty of water you will help the body in eliminating the excess of uric acid. It is strongly recommended to drink at least 2 liters of water a day. Also, try to reduce the amount of saturated fats from your diet and eat more carbohydrate rich foods such as cereal, pasta and bread. Consume plenty of fruits, as they contain lots of important vitamins and minerals. Fruits like apples, oranges, nectarines and lemons should be a part of your daily menu.

Summary

Sensitive skin is often blamed for breakouts and itchy skin. This article discusses the qualities of sensitive skin and how these can be determined. This article also provides information and tips on the proper care of sensitive skin designed to reduce sensitivity and increase skin resilience.