POSTS WITH TAG: hormonal imbalances

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    Whether you’re trying to lose weight, get strong, or just want to feel better, there’s one healthy habit most moms are missing. Even when you’re working out consistently and watching what you eat, skimping on sleep can derail all your good intentions.

    Yes, it's true. Sleep is the one thing all humans need to survive, and it can be the answer to lasting good health. Perhaps you remember it from your pre-kids days? It’s that activity that lasted beyond six in the morning on the weekend. 

    In case you need convincing that sleep should be a priority for you, here are four reasons sleep is so vital, as well as practical tips on getting more -- and better -- sleep.

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    There seems to be as many different triggers for eczema flare-ups as there are people who have eczema. If you have this skin condition, then you know it can be very difficult to pinpoint your own personal triggers. Some things around your house that you would never have even considered a danger to your health can send your eczema into a tizzy.

    While the exact cause of eczema is still unknown, many doctors think eczema is linked to allergies like hay fever or asthma. In other cases, eczema is believed to be linked to food allergies, which means you might need to keep an eye on the dairy or wheat in your diet. Some of the other common eczema triggers that you should keep your eye on are as follows.

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    Sex sells. It's one of the things people are most interested in and most insecure about, so they're willing to shell out to have the kind of sex life they think they should be having. Sad. But that doesn't mean businesses aren't above trying to turn a quick buck by playing on our insecurities. Take all the folks out there trying to be the first to market a successful "female Viagra." The way they keep taking stabs at it, and there's a new pill getting press every few months, I'm convinced they believe it's the Holy Grail of drugs. Too bad it's an altogether flawed concept.

    But okay, let's give the latest shillers a listen.

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    Nutritionist Esther Blum, MS, RD, isn't exactly a fan of New Year's resolutions to go on a fad diet -- with good reason! As she explains in her new book, Cavewomen Don't Get Fat: The Paleo Chic Diet for Rapid Results, our cultural obsession with dieting "makes us vulnerable to counting points or calories, having low-calorie meals delivered to our doors, or drinking 'cleansing' drinks five times a day. Yet we're still overweight, stressed out, unhealthy, and exhausted." Sounds about right! We're caught in a perpetual cycle of searching for the secret to effective, lasting, healthy weight control.

    But after catching up with Esther and checking out her book, I'm positive her "Paleo chic" plan is a brilliant way to put the brakes on runaway yo-yo dieting.

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    PMS is terrible. As if your actual period wasn't bad enough, it's preceded by something that at times feels worse than the flu. There's the bloating and the tummy woe in general. There are the headaches and the inexplicable tears. There's all the muscles aches and pain and the fatigue. And dear lord let us not forget the cramping. Oh sweet furry Buddha in heaven -- the cramping!

    We all have our tried and true methods when it comes to banishing our various PMS symptoms. Some of these have been passed down from generation to generation for so long that we don't even know their origins anymore. Some are based in hard science; others, well, there's less science involved and more general panic. 

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    I've been anxious all my life, but it was definitely exacerbated by having babies. A lot of babies. And not just because I had more to worry about. But because I was a big gigantic hormonal cocktail.

    Then I noticed I started to get extra moody from ovulation to my period, which was really affecting my interactions with family members. I was short, irritable, and on the day before my period, downright angry.

    And while I tried everything they recommend, from cutting caffeine to getting more sleep (yeah, right), even exercising regularly and cutting out foods from my diet, nothing really helped until I tried medication.

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    Is it just me, or does it seem like every other kid these days is diagnosed with ADHD? I’ll admit it … I used to be one of those people that thought it was a made-up “disorder” for bratty kids. Then I married someone with ADHD -- and believe me -- ADHD is real. But how real is it?

    In the United States, nearly one in every five high school boys is diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Over 10 percent of school-aged children overall have it. ADHD is up 16 percent over the past five years and 41 percent over the past decade.

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    During a spa trip for my 40th, it became apparent that when seven moms get together for some R&R, they become alarmists. Yep, we spent much of our "relaxation" time discussing what to avoid and how it could kill you.

    I know, you totally want to party with us.

    We couldn't even escape our cynical chit chat by catching a flick on pay-per-view. Who was going to risk their lives and touch the germ-laden hotel remote? Someone also mentioned that one should avoid handling menus. Needless to say, this made ordering dinner quite difficult. Thankfully, it didn't hamper the flow of sarcasm and margaritas (my favorite combo).

    After my vacay I posted, "A Sarcastic Look at 19 Common Things That'll Kill Ya" and was relieved to learn that I'm not the only lame-o who sits around discussing this crap. So, here's a list of more everyday things I've actually been told to avoid, just don't quote me on the effects.

    Reading this list can cause ironic revelations, incontinence, and typhoid:

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    Not Actual Hormone TherapyNot that long ago every woman "of a certain age" was given a prescription of estrogen as soon as she got a little snippy. The idea being that hormone therapy could solve all of the ills of menopause: the hot flashes, the mood swings, the vaginal dryness that no one wants to talk about. 

    While these symptoms were the primary reasons ladies were asking their doctors for some relief, the side benefits of reducing the risk of chronic lady diseases like breast cancer and osteoporosis were also touted around the medical world. 

    Turns out, those benefits are hardly worth the risks of taking hormone therapy. And if you're currently on hormone therapy, you should probably stop. 

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    Whether it's Breast Cancer Awareness Month or not, there's almost no end in sight to all the info about early detection and prevention of the disease. It's absolutely astounding and so heartening to see that we seem to be getting more and more well-versed about how we can guard ourselves against breast cancer. And yet, at the same time, we can't forget that there are many breast health issues women experience all the time that actually have nothing to do with cancer.

    Board-certified gynecologist and regular women's health expert for The Dr. Oz Show Dr. Jennifer Ashton touched on some of the most common, non-cancerous concerns your breasts might be trying to clue you in on.

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