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4 Best Foods for Your Bones (and the 4 Worst!)

What are the best foods for bone health? What are the worst? The answers might surprise you! If you turned on the TV or opened a magazine between 1994 and 1014, you likely saw the Got Milk? ads that touted three glasses a day for bone health. The dairy industry spends billions of dollars to convince us that their products are the end-all when it comes to bone health. Sure, milk is high in calcium, but there are actually a number of nutrients that come into play when we’re talking bone health. I get into the details a little bit more here, but magnesium is actually…

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The 25 Best Diet Tips to Lose Weight and Improve Health

Let’s face it — there’s an overwhelming amount of information on the Internet about how to quickly shed pounds and get in shape. If you’re looking for the best tips on how to lose weight and keep it off, this seemingly endless amount of advice can be overwhelming and confusing. From the diets promoting raw foods to meal plans that revolve around shakes and prepackaged foods, a new fad diet seems to pop up every day. The problem is, although very restrictive diets and elimination meal plans will most likely result in short-term weight loss, most people can’t maintain them…

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Alleviate Lower-Back Pain from the Comfort of Your Desk

One of the leading causes for missing work around the world is lower back pain, according to the World Health Organization. When our backs feel like they’re shooting lightning bolts up our spine, it’s understandably hard to focus on the task at hand. Recent systematic reviews into the problem have found that the most important thing you can do to combat your chronic back pain is to move your body, even if the pain makes you want to lie down on the couch. The medical researchers concluded that adding just 20 minutes of any kind of aerobic exercise could significantly alleviate pain. In…

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Smokers are Nearly 50% More Likely to Need Spinal Surgery

Smoking increases the risk of lower back pain that needs to be fixed by spinal surgery, a Swedish study suggests. Researchers focused on a common cause of lower back pain known as lumbar spinal stenosis, which occurs when the spinal canal narrows, putting pressure on the spinal cord and nerves. The condition often develops as people age, but nicotine’s constriction of blood flow and promotion of inflammation are believed to contribute to the process, the study authors write. The participants in the Swedish study, however, were mostly in the prime of their lives, and, though they all…

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7 Natural Energy Boosters

Do you muster every ounce of energy you have just to lift your limbs out of bed, experience a daily afternoon crash that only lifts with a caffeine boost, or feel a general sense of fatigue throughout the day? According to research, you are not alone. Fatigue is the second most common complaint to doctors in North America. Unfortunately, many people turn to caffeine to boost their energy levels. That approach provides short-lived energy at best. At worst, it may cause damage to your body in the form of caffeine addiction, blood sugar fluctuations and adrenal gland depletion that makes you more vulnerable to stress. Since…

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Natural Cures for These 5 Common Winter Maladies

Winter can be a harsh time for the body. All parts of the body can get stiffer, smellier and drier. But not to fear! Here are some simple natural cures for 5 of the most common winter maladies: BAD BREATH With all the sugary, rich foods we consume in winter, it’s no surprise that many of us are forced to deal with bad breath. Halitosis is no fun, but it’s not a lost cause. Bad breath is caused by a buildup of bad bacteria in the mouth—on the back of the tongue, the cheeks, the roof of your mouth. Brushing these areas…

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7 Simple Exercises for Upper and Middle Back Pain

Back pain can really put a damper on your day-to-day routine. Find out some common causes for upper and middle back pain and simple exercises that can help! There are many causes of upper and middle back pain, and most of them are related to overuse or strain. Poor posture, overdoing it in the yard or lifting something too heavy for you can all put strain on your upper and middle back, causing injury and pain. For mild to moderate pain, these exercises can help give you some relief. As always, talk to a doctor if your pain is severe or doesn’t seem…

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Why You Need to Get Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable

Three months ago we were living in a small, cozy apartment in a city that plays host to one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Life was easy. We had a gym, a mall, the beach and a smorgasbord of restaurants all within walking distance of our home. The problem with easy though, is that it quickly becomes routine. With nothing to challenge us, we found ourselves stagnating. Sure, we kept busy with things like work, volunteering, hiking and so on, but something was missing. We weren’t being challenged. Rather than expanding, it’s as if our comfort zone was shrinking….

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5 Everyday Noises That Can Ruin Your Hearing

We live in a noisy world. There’s so much noise so much of the time that we become oblivious to it. We accept noise as the background to our lives. That is, until we find ourselves left out of conversations and turning up the volume on the television because we can’t hear. Even everyday sounds like household appliances and portable music players can slowly rob you of your ability to hear. According to the National Institutes on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD), exposure to loud and long-lasting sounds can damage sensitive structures in the inner ear and cause noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL). Hearing…

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Do You Worry About Falling? How to Conquer the Fear

Do you worry about losing your balance as you get older? It’s perfectly normal to worry about falling, and it does happen more often as people age. Increasing your awareness bolstered by daily exercise can help. How the fear of falling develops About one-third of older adults fall annually, says audiologist Julie Honaker, PhD, Director of Cleveland Clinic’s Vestibular and Balance Disorders Laboratories. “Those who fall develop a greater fear of falling. But, even those who don’t fall can develop the fear if they have a friend who’s fallen. They know the consequences of the injuries and how it can impact their independence,” she says. The role of…