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Showing posts from February 11, 2018

How to Lower Your Risk of Oral Cancer

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Go Heavy on Fruits and VeggiesA lack of nutrients can lead to changes in your mouth that make cancer more likely. But vitamins and antioxidants in fruits and veggies rev up your immune system, and that helps protect you. So get at least 5 servings of them a day and mix them up for plenty of variety. Carrots, Brussels sprouts, and squash are especially good for your mouth. Cook SmarterTo get the most bang for your fruit-and-veggie buck, don’t cook all the cancer-fighting goodness out of them. Enjoy some of them raw to get the full effect. When you do cook them, stop when they get tender and still have some life in them. Also, cooking oils can form cancer-causing substances at high heat. So instead of frying, it’s a better idea to bake, boil, broil, or steam your food. Use Sun ProtectionToo much time in the sun doesn’t just raise your chances of skin cancer, it’s also a problem for your lips. If you can, stay out of direct sunlight in the middle of the day -- that’s when it’s strongest…

Avoid These Habits. Your Back Will Thank You

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Sit HunchedDo it too much, and it can flatten the natural curve of your spine and damage the cushioned disks between the bones. This can lead to early arthritis and other problems. Gently stretch and move your head and neck in all 4 directions every half hour. To ease any pain or spasm, try applying an ice pack or heating pad to the area. Be sure to cover the skin with a light towel or cloth first. See your doctor if the pain won’t go away. Too Many “Treats”Choosing the wrong foods too often can lead to inflammation and leave out nutrients you need to be strong. Your body needs lean protein, whole grains, fruits and veggies, and healthy fats like those from avocado and salmon to build strong muscles, bones, and soft tissue in your back. Be sure to get nutrients like calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D, too. Sleep on the Wrong MattressIt should be firm enough to support your back, but soft enough to fit the shape of your body. Your ideal mattress can depend on how you sleep and whether y…

15 Ways to Keep Your Mind Young

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Give Your Life a SoundtrackYour brain gets a mental workout when you stream your favorite playlist. Not only can listening to music help you feel more alert, but it also can boost your memory and mood. One reason is that there’s a math to music and how one note relates to the other. Your brain has to work to make sense of this structure. This is especially true for music you’re hearing for the first time. Make Time to Make FriendsGetting to know new people boosts your brain’s “executive function” as much as doing a crossword puzzle. This set of mental skills includes your short-term memory, power to tune out distractions, and ability to stay focused. How does a friendly 10-minute chat help? Listening to someone else’s point of view and trying to put yourself in their shoes pushes your brain to think in new ways. Laugh It OffStress can make your brain release a hormone called cortisol, which makes it hard to think clearly. Over time, high levels of stress can cause trouble with your lear…

Cold vs. Flu: How to Tell the Difference

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Cold vs. the Flu: Does It Matter?Over-the-counter drugs and chicken soup help both, right? Not so fast. It's important to learn which kind of illness you're dealing with. That's because the flu can have serious complications, like the lung infection pneumonia. It can even be deadly. Flu treatments work best within 48 hours of the time symptoms start. Prescription antiviral drugs may cut the time you're sick. Flu: Comes on Fast and FuriousIf you feel like you've been hit by a truck, it's probably the flu. Symptoms like sore throat, fever, headache, muscle aches, congestion, and cough tend to come on suddenly. Colds are usually less intense and include a runny or stuffy nose. The flu gets better over 2 to 5 days, but you might feel run-down for a week or longer. Colds come on slowly and last up to 10 days. Fever: Usually Means FluWhile some people may get a slight fever when they have a cold, most don’t. If you have the flu, you’ll probably run a temperature of 100-…