Showing posts from August 26, 2018

Tips for Dealing With Toxic In-Laws

How to Handle Toxic In-Laws

By Leslie Becker-Phelps, PhD

No matter how difficult your in-laws are, they’re still your spouse’s parents. Whether their bad behavior is aimed at you or your spouse (or maybe both of you), it can help to know how to keep a potentially explosive situation contained – or at least as calm as possible.

Do what you can to understand your spouse’s relationship with their parents and provide the support that your partner needs. For instance, though Nancy’s father-in-law constantly criticized her husband Sal, he was nothing but nice to Nancy. So, when her father-in-law came for visits, she purposely engaged him, pulling his attention away from Sal. This was helpful because Sal appreciated her efforts. If, however, he saw it as Nancy siding with his father, Nancy would have needed to find a different way to help.

It’s essential that you confirm with your spouse that your actions (or planned actions) leave them feeling supported. In addition to looking to your spouse fo…

Insomnia's Link to Weight Gain

How Sleepless Nights Can Trigger Weight Gain

By Amy Norton
HealthDay Reporter

One sleepless night might tip the body's metabolism toward storing fat while depleting muscle, new research suggests.

Many studies have linked poor sleep -- whether from insomnia or working the night shift -- to weight gain and health conditions like type 2 diabetes. But that type of research leaves open the question of whether sleep loss itself is to blame.

A growing number of lab studies, zeroing in on the effects of sleep deprivation, suggest the answer is "yes." The new research adds to the evidence.

"We need mechanistic studies to understand the effects of sleep loss," said lead researcher Dr. Jonathan Cedernaes, a research associate at Northwestern University, in Chicago.

Cedernaes said studies have shown, for example, that sleep loss can change a range of markers in the blood -- including blood sugar, hormone levels and various byproducts of metabolism

For the new study, his team dug i…

15 Unexpected Causes of Itching

Problems With Your ThyroidIt's a gland in your neck that makes a hormone that helps your body store and burn energy. If it doesn't make enough, you could feel tired, weak, achy, and foggy-headed. You could also get dry, itchy skin. It's more common in women who might notice changes in their monthly cycle or problems getting pregnant. You might be able to manage it with artificial hormones and other treatments. Swipe to advance 2/15 PregnancyWhen you're expecting, your body sends more blood to the skin and stretches it over your belly, which may cause mild itching. You can manage it with loose, breathable clothing, cool baths, and moisturizers. If the itching is really bad, especially on your hands or feet, it could be a more serious condition called cholestasis. It's caused by a buildup of bile salts from your liver. Your doctor will watch you and your baby closely. Swipe to advance 3/15 DiabetesSkin problems are sometimes the first sign of this disease. If you're …

Mosquito Repellents: What Works?

Yes: DEETA repellent with DEET tells mosquitos to buzz off loud and clear. You'll need one with at least 20% DEET to protect your skin for several hours at a time, although more than 50% doesn't work any better (kids should use 10%-30%). DEET is safe for almost everyone, and if used as directed, it should be OK for pregnant and nursing women and for babies more than 2 months old. But it can make your sunscreen less effective. Swipe to advance 2/15 Yes: PicaridinWhether in a spray, lotion, or wipes, picaridin is another EPA-approved ingredient that works well as a skin barrier for mosquitoes. It's a plant-based compound you'll find in products like Cutter Advanced and Skin So Soft Bug Guard Plus. It's also safe for kids and pregnant women. Swipe to advance 3/15 Yes: IR3535You can get this man-made mosquito-blocking compound in Avon's Skin So Soft Bug Guard Plus IR3535 Expedition. It's A-OK by the EPA and will shoo mosquitoes off skin for several hours. It's an…

How to Keep Your Brain Fit as You Get Older

A new book outlines many ways to keep our cognitive skills strong and reduce the risk of dementia as we age.BY KARIN EVANS 
If you are of a certain age, it’s probably happened to you: You walk into a room and forget what you came for. You misplace your car keys. Again. And although you try and try to remember the name of that acquaintance in front of you, your mind goes blank.

Oh no, you think. Is this a sign of Alzheimer’s? Am I losing my brainpower?
If you have such concerns, you’re not alone. A recent survey by the Alzheimer’s Association showed that 60 percent of people worldwide believe—incorrectly—that Alzheimer’s is an inevitable part of aging, a worry second only to getting cancer. The good news is that there is more information than ever available these days about staving off mental decline and staying sharp into your twilight years.
There’s so much research out there, in fact, that it would be hard to wade through it all. That’s what makes the new book Ageless Brain: Think Faste…

How to Raise a Kid with a Conscience in the Digital Age

Nudge kids to be their best selves by encouraging them to consume positive, inspiring media and online content.BY CAROLINE KNORR
Every parent wants to raise a kid with a conscience—someone who’ll do the right thing even when no one is watching. But when the road to online integrity is riddled with cyberbullying, cell phone cheating, sexting, and other risks, trusting your kid to be conscientious feels like a leap of faith.

Here’s the good news: Studies show that kids actually have a strong grasp of right and wrong as early as the toddler years, and parents have a huge influence on what kids learn about how to behave. The parenting you’ve been doing—role-modeling, keeping the lines of communication open, and finding ways to instill the kinds of character traits you value—is an excellent foundation for raising a kid with a conscience, both online and off. You can make even more of an impact using the media and technology that your kid loves, such as YouTube, Netflix, Snapchat, and Instagr…

Burning Insight

Dr. Jay Bansal lost his home in the Tubbs fire last year in California. He reflects: "Fire is a powerful and destructive force, as well as a potentially purifying and healing force in just about all spiritual traditions. It is up to each person whether to treat fire's destruction as a tragic loss or as an opportunity for transformation and healing. In the fire's aftermath, I saw up close examples of both: people mourning and nearly broken apart by the loss of all their material possessions, and people humbled and broken open by the opportunity to purify and lighten." Bansal shares more in this insightful article.

Embracing JOMO, The Joy of Missing Out

"Fear of missing out, or FOMO, is a common sensation in our high-pressure, social media-frenzied world, particularly in Western society. A recent study defined FOMO as, "the uneasy and sometimes all-consuming feeling that you're missing out - that your peers are doing, in the know about, or in possession of more or something better than you." Under these terms, nearly 75 percent of young adults reported experiencing the phenomenon. So what exactly are we so afraid we're missing out on? The endless array of opportunities that present themselves in our day-to-day lives, from activities with friends and family, to invitations to upgrade our technology and boost our livelihoods all contribute. But while fear of missing out may be presented under the guise of a pressure to keep up, it often stems from a deeper unhappiness." Writer Emily Barr shares more about this phenomenon, and suggests an antidote -- cultivating a relationship to the joy of missing out.


The Four Keys to Happiness at Work

Research reveals the steps you can take toward greater well-being, health, and productivity at work.BY EMILIANA R. SIMON-THOMAS

Where I grew up, work sucked. My parents were always drained and exasperated, and never felt financially secure enough to relax. Overwhelmed by unreasonable demands and terrible toilets (my dad was the local school district plumber) and hardened by a sense that nobody else was pulling their weight, they felt defeated by work. To top it all off, people never seemed to acknowledge or appreciate the great lengths they would go through to do things just right. I know they’re not alone. For somewhere between 55 to 80 percent of us, it’s normal to see work as something to be endured, not enjoyed. We toil all day, then come home to a drink or some HGTV, trying to find the right “work-life balance”—with the assumption that work is about stress (and sustenance) while the rest of our life is where we derive true meaning and happiness. But that perspective does not survive…