Posts tagged with "tips"

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Beginner’s Guide to Tasting Wine

By Pallavi Gupta

Learning about wine for beginners don’t need a degree in rocket science. Otherwise, it would be so dull, lol! Life would sack big time! So, all you need is a good tongue and maybe a nose…just kidding. There are plenty of self-proclaimed wine professionals and enthusiasts who create wine tasting terms and descriptions to credit or discredit one particular grape, that a layman like us finds it hard to understand. For first-time wine tasters, don’t worry about complicated wine tasting vocabulary. The good thing is that you can simplify the whole process by having fun with an open mind while tasting wine. To expand your wine-tasting knowledge, all you need is a little effort and focus. 

Now let’s put on your wine tasting gear (if there is such a thing) and dive into the world of wine tasting to find out what makes a good wine, using these simple wine tasting tips for beginners. 

Now for the juicy part of wine tasting, let’s talk about the three different types of wines available for tasting.

To simplify things, let’s talk about wine color as an essential wine guide to achieve excellent wine-tasting results. Generally, there are three distinctive colors; red, white, and rose. Reds are what make my day if you ask me. But that’s just me. Here’s an elaborate on each type :

  • Red wines – these are made from dingy colored grapes. They have bolder, pleasant tastes than the white or rose wines.  You can serve this wine at your room temperature with either starchy foods, cured meat, or even your usual meatballs. 
  • White wines – these are made with green grapes, which gives them a yellowish color. They are served chilled due to their soft, lighter, and fruitier flavor. You can enjoy them with your favorite seafood, fruit, desserts, and also salads. 
  • Roses – when you blend the red and the green grapes, this is what you will get. You try this type of wine with anything either chilled or at room temperature. 

Now, talking about varietals. 

Varietals are the actual kind of grape that is used to make the wine. Each varietal has a unique flavor and smell which changes annually. Some of the well-known wine varietals for each wine color include:

  • Reds: Pinot Noir, Cabernet, Bordeaux, Merlot, Zinfandel, and Syrah.
  • Whites: Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot Grigio, Moscato, and Sauvignon Blanc. 
  • Rose: There is no particular varietal to speak of as most of the rose wines are blends. 

To adequately sample how great a wine is, you need to incorporate all your five senses. Yes, that’s true!

Take a Good Look: 

Just like food, your eyes have to initiate the wine tasting process. Just like a beautiful woman too….lol The color of wine speaks volumes about the quality of the wine, especially in red wine tasting guide. Holding out a glass of wine and tilting it a bit of a white surface, allows you to get the depth of color. At this point, you will notice the depth of color by swirling the wine glass gently and observing it closely. If the beverage moves around like water, it means that the wine is lighter and fresh with less alcohol content. A syrupy wine shows that it is more full-bodied and is potentially has higher alcohol content. Whites, indeed, can vary in color, which can give you an idea of the quality of the grape.

The older the wine, the darker will be the color. It’s due to its natural aromas that tend to separate slightly over time. Newer wines, on the other hand, are more uniform in color. The last thing you need to observe in your wine is bubbles. Bubbles are quite evident in Champagne or sparkling wine. It is fascinating to see them floating on top of your wine glass as you enjoy its excellent aroma. Unwanted bubbles mean that the wine has gone bad and needs to be tossed. 

Swirl the Wine:

Wine swirling allows you to establish its texture. To follow this, carefully swirl your wine in the glass by holding the base on a smooth surface. Slowly move your glass in close circles on the table, as you gradually increase the speed for the wine to slide up along the inner surface of the glass. Continue for a few more swirls. It isn’t mandatory to swirl wine on top of a table. You can also hold the stem and circularly move the wine glass. Essentially, the benefit of wine swirling is to allow air to mix the wine to get its aroma, also displaying your love for the wine.

Smell the Wine:

As I said, you need a nose to suck all the aroma out of your wine…lol. Before the tasting, there’s the smelling part. If you master the art of wine smell, it will make it easier for you to establish the kind of wine before tasting it. You can gather lots of information from the smell, and it’s quite pertinent. If you get the smell of rotten egg or boiled cabbage, it means that reduction was used to make the wine. Alternatively, if you get the smell of toffee or honey, it means that oxidation is undertaken in the process of winemaking. 

Wine smells can be broken down into three categories, which are:

  • Type of Grape: Now that you all know about different grapes, judging the type of grape used to make the wine would be quite easy. You may feel herbal, fruity, or even floral aromas.
  • Baseline Flavours: These are the secondary kinds of flavors used to make a particular wine. You can smell of yogurt, bread, cheese rind, or sour cream. 
  • Over Time-lapse: These aromas culminate over time and can vary from mushroom, tobacco, leather, vanilla, or cloves smells. You may get confused at first, but this won’t deny you the pleasure of tasting wine.

Tasting the wine:

To taste the wine, take a small sip first and hold it in your mouth for a few seconds. You can even slosh it around like mouthwash for the wine to reach the entire mouth. It may sound grouse, but no, it’s not! If it gives the right results, it’s worth it. Another technique that requires a bit of practice is drawing a small amount of air into the mouth and over the wine. Follow this without dribbling. It allows the aroma up into the nasal passages in the back of the throat for you to smell the wine again.

  • Your nose is a perfect tool to give you accurate clues about the wine. The taste should complement the smell and not contradict it. You should ask yourself whether the smell advertised correctly what the mouth consumed. You will find out that the nose is more accurate than your taste buds once you’ve tasted the wine. 
  • Your Wine can be either sweet or sour like aspirin, mostly it depends. For a higher alcohol content or riper wine, the texture will be stronger towards the red color. Usually, In red wine, the presence of tannins also affects the composition of the wine. 
  • The freshness of wine comes from its acidity. To enhance the sharpness of the wine, odorless acids are infused at the winery. You will know your wine is acidic if your mouth waters. 

To conclude the wine tasting process, you can either swallow or spit the wine out. What you need to observe is how long the taste stays in your mouth. For a bottle of great wine, the flavor will remain in your mouth for long. 

Reaching your conclusion

After going through all the swirling, smelling, and tasting of wine, you would have probably concluded the type of wine you like or what doesn’t make your day. Think about the overall impression of the wine aftertaste. There are various questions you will need to ask and answer yourself according to the experience you had throughout the wine tasting process. Was the taste strong or quickly fade later on? Did the smell marry the flavor in your palate? Were you be able to distinguish between the various components like fruit, acidity, alcohol, and tannins. 

To relish a heavenly wine taste, all the components need to complement each other and find harmony from your nose to your palate. All that matters is you had that feeling of eternal bliss while tasting wine for the first time. At the end of your tasting, you can always write down funny wine tasting notes to describe your sensations, subjective comments, or perceptions. 

10 facts about Anxiety Disorder

Vinay Saranga M.D. is a psychiatrist and founder of Saranga Comprehensive Psychiatry. He offers these 10 facts about anxiety disorders:

1. There’s a difference between anxiety and an anxiety disorder:

Everybody experiences anxiety from time to time. It quite often presents itself when we are feeling scared, stressed or worried and that’s normal anxiety. People with a true anxiety disorder experience both psychological and physiological symptoms on a regular basis, and in many cases, it can be debilitating.

2. Anxiety disorders encompass a number of psychiatric conditions:

An anxiety disorder is not just someone who experiences excessive worry. A number of psychiatric conditions makeup anxiety disorders including: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Panic Disorder and Generalized Anxiety Disorder.

3. Anyone can develop an anxiety disorder:

Anxiety disorders are not just reserved for people who tend to worry a lot. Anyone can develop an anxiety disorder because there are a number of factors that come into play including your environment, upbringing, genetics and chemical imbalances in the brain.

4. Anxiety symptoms aren’t always obvious:

Most people think of excessive worry and stress as symptoms of anxiety. That is true, but there are also other symptoms that you may not associate with anxiety such as racing thoughts, chest pains, difficulty breathing, irritability, loss of appetite, headaches, trouble sleeping and increased heart rate.

5. Anxiety disorders can be managed:

Many anxiety disorders bring about very unpleasant body sensations. Although they can be quite scary and even uncomfortable, it is possible to learn to control them and lead a very successful and fulfilling life despite your condition.

6. Treatment should be started as soon as possible:

Like any medical condition, the sooner you can start treatment for an anxiety disorder, the better. The longer it goes without getting help, the more severe your condition can become. There are many great treatment options available including medication, therapy, alternative treatments and self-help options.

7. There’s no reason to suffer:

Millions of people have been diagnosed with anxiety disorders. But unfortunately, so many more are silently suffering. Men in particular have a tough time seeking treatment due to the fear of being labeled weak or being seen as less of a man. There is nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed about.

8. There is an upside to anxiety:

For all the negative things we hear about anxiety, there is some good that comes from it. Chances are you are more cautious, very compassionate, kind, a good listener, and think before you act. In fact, whether you realize it or not, many of the characteristics that you may not like about yourself make you more attractive to others.

9. Too much anxiety can affect your health:

In the short term, there’s nothing dangerous about the physical sensations of anxiety. However, in the long run, if left untreated, anxiety disorders can take a toll on the body and lead to high blood pressure, heart disease, GI problems and other psychiatric conditions.

10. We must continue to erase the stigma:

In recent years, anxiety and mental illness as a whole has become more accepted by society. However, it is still not on the same level as more physical illnesses. The responsibility is on all of us to erase the stigma and be more accepting of those who struggle with their mental health.

Don’t Let Your Body Be A Bummer This Summer: 5 Tips To Detoxify

As summer winds down, some people who ditched their New Year’s weight-loss resolutions may re-dedicate themselves to looking good.

Even more important, though, is what we put in our bodies. What we eat and drink not only impacts how we look, but how we feel.

And to properly set the tone for the inner body and good overall health, it’s vital to get the bad stuff – toxins – out, and keep them out, says Dr. Suhyun An (www.drsuhyunan.com), an expert on regenerative medicine and co-author of Demystifying Stem Cells: A Real-Life Approach To Regenerative Medicine.

“People may want to look good, but being truly healthy on the inside is a year-round commitment,” Dr. An says. “And you need to start by detoxifying the body.

“Toxins can severely affect every part of the body. They’re in tons of every-day products.  Being aware of them and avoiding them are essential to good health.”

Dr. An provides five tips for cleaning out the toxins in your body:

Reduce the toxins you’re taking in. The first step to cleaning out toxins in your body is to cut back – or completely eliminate – things you put into your body that contain them. “When something is hard for the body to digest, it can slow down your metabolism and cause toxins to accumulate in your body,” Dr. An says. “Avoid these groups: red meat, gluten, refined sugar, processed food, alcohol, and caffeine.”

Be careful with household products. Household cleaners, soaps, and beauty products all can contain harmful toxins that are absorbed through the skin. “Choose these products carefully,” Dr. An says, “and always make sure you know what’s in them. There are many great natural cleaners and products that can help reduce the toxins your skin and body are exposed to.”

Drink plenty of water. “Water has a multitude of benefits for your body, skin, and organs,” she says. “Drinking enough water is extremely important in getting rid of toxins in the body. It helps boost metabolism and can literally flush out the harmful materials that have built up in your body.”

Add plenty of dietary fiber and antioxidants to your diet. Eating foods with plenty of fiber, such as organic fruits, vegetables and whole grains, will help your body move the toxins out. “Antioxidants help to fight free radicals and help to further remove harmful materials,” Dr. An says.

Sweat it out. Sweating is a very effective way for the body to get rid of toxins. “Achieving this through exercise also keeps your organs and systems working properly, which plays a key role in releasing toxins,” Dr. An says. “Aside from exercising, hopping into a sauna or hot bath can help, too.”

“Removing toxins is key to living a healthy life,” Dr. An says. “Just like many of us do in our homes by procrastinating and getting sloppy, our body stores junk. Get rid of it once and for all.”

About Dr. Suhyun An, DC, MSN, NP-C

Dr. Suhyun An (www.drsuhyunan.com) is the clinic director at Campbell Medical Group in Houston and an expert on regenerative medicine. She is co-author of Demystifying Stem Cells: A Real-Life Approach To Regenerative Medicine and travels the nation speaking on those topics. Dr. An received a BS in Biochemistry and Biophysical Science from the University of Houston, graduated cum laude from Parker College of Chiropractic, and got her master’s in nursing science from Samford University.

10 Driving Tips To Avoid Car Accidents

Even though the laws are very clear, every year the number of deaths and injuries from car accidents is still very high. One of the main reasons for this is because people are failing to buckle up when they hit the road. While the legal system is still working on getting people to put that safety belt on, why don’t we look as some practical ways to avoid accidents altogether.

1. Take Your Time

It can be very exciting to get out on that open highway this summer season, but it is best to take your time. Rather than hurrying to take to the road, take a breather and ease your way into the highway traffic. When starting from a full stop, always take the time to look both directions to make sure the way is clear before merging into traffic.

2. Focus On Your Driving

It is easy to get distracted while driving, especially if you have a car full of people. However, remember that the car is not the place to try to take care of other things. Whether it’s fixing your make-up, fussing at the kids, or adjusting the radio, it takes only a second with your eyes off the road for something to happen.

3. Get In The Right Position

When driving, don’t get in the habit of slouching behind the wheel. When your body is in the right position, you will be alert and attentive to everything that’s going on around you. The right position means you are ready to react should something happen suddenly. Your hands can control the steering wheel better, you can reach the brakes faster, and you’ll be ready to take evasive maneuvers if needed.

4. Be Prepared For Surprises

Even if you have the right-of-way, always proceed with caution. Look both ways before entering into an intersection to make sure that someone is not rushing through a yellow light. When passing semis on the high-way, always keep an eye on the big rig and position your vehicle so that the driver can see you. Never linger in their blind spot.

5. Set Your Music Before You Start Your Engine

Changing your music selection can cause you to take your mind off of what’s important causing an accident. If you find you want to change your music while driving, it is best to pull off the road and make the change than to take your eyes off of your task.

6. Make Sure All Your Mirrors Are In Good Position

Both your side mirrors and your rear-view mirror should be position so that you can see as much of the road behind you as possible. This will ensure that you are fully aware of your surroundings so you can change lanes or merge into traffic safely.

7. Keep An Eye Out For Children

Small children are not always aware of the dangers of an oncoming car. They can easily dart out in front of your car from between parked cars or down driveways. If you’re driving in a residential neighborhood, watch for stray balls, toys, and other signs that children might be playing in the area. Slow down so that you can scan the area completely as you drive.

8. Never Drink and Drive

Even if you’ve only had a small amount to drink, never get behind the wheel after drinking. If you plan to drink at a party, restaurant, or club, always bring another person along to get you back home. If you don’t have someone, take a number of someone or a service you can call. Not only can you prevent an accident that can cause a significant amount of auto body damage, you can save yourself a lot of embarrassment or worse yet, jail time.

9. Keep Vehicle Maintenance Up To Date

Many accidents are caused simply because the vehicle breaks down in a dangerous place. Worn out brakes, bald tires, or even something as simple as a tattered windshield wiper can create hazards on the road in an instant. Always make sure that your vehicle is maintained so it stays in optimum condition.

10. Respect Other Drivers

We all have to share the road so regardless of your mental or emotional state at the time, drive with respect and be courteous to other drivers. This will avoid situations of road rage or offending someone else. If you see anyone who is driving recklessly, report it to the proper authorities and let them handle it. Confronting irate drives can create much more hazards that could jeopardize the lives of other drivers as well.

When you drive safely, your eyes are constantly on the look-out for potential hazards. This will allow you to not only keep yourself safe, but it will also contribute to safe road conditions for everyone.

Six Ways to Cut Down on Alcohol

by Tara Yombor, LMHC and clinical director at Pathway to Hope, a Delphi Behavioral Health Group facility.

Social (moderate) drinking, binge drinking, alcoholism, tolerance, and dependence. This is the typical pattern of progression for drinking that leads someone to think of him or herself as needing to cut down on alcohol. Some might think they are prone to alcoholism. Within that progression, the time for someone to cut down on drinking is based on the individual’s idea of what is causing dysfunction and unmanageability in their life.

Why is it so easy for someone to become addicted to alcohol, and what does it mean to have
an alcohol use disorder?

First of all, alcohol does not have an adverse social stigma, which makes the dependence for it more likely, and the consumption of it more acceptable. Alcohol is typically used to celebrate happy events and sooth the sad events in life. Think about a celebration. What do most people imagine? Alcohol, champagne, and a “toast to the New Year!”

During times of mourning or stress, alcohol can be used to ease the emotional pain of a loss or as a stress reliever. Social (or moderate) drinking is seen as a normal and perfectly harmless way of socializing, relaxing, or a form of celebration.

A binge drinker is defined as a man who drinks more than four to six drinks in a two-hour period, and a woman who drinks more than four to five drinks in a two-hour period. Someone with alcohol use disorder is typically a person with a long-term addiction to alcohol. This person is typically unable to control how much they consume or when to stop drinking and spends a lot of time thinking about the next drink.

It can be easy for someone to transition from a social drinker to a binge drinker to having an
alcohol use disorder. A binge drinker is someone who has more than the above allotted
acceptable drinks in a short amount of time.

Someone who is a binge drinker or struggling with heavy alcohol use may find that people close to them begin to notice negative patterns of behavior during times of drinking. Friends and family may start to become worried about the person’s drinking patterns and negative outcomes that have begun to arise from their drinking. A person who begins to engage in
binge drinking may find themselves calling out of work the day after drinking due to a hangover; they may miss important deadlines, get into arguments with their loved ones, or lose track of daily responsibilities.

Tolerance for alcohol means that a person needs more and more alcohol to feel the desired effect than they previously would not have needed. Someone who has a pattern of binge drinking may find themselves drinking even more alcohol in a short time to feel drunk.

Once tolerance increases, the possibility of dependence increases. Dependence can be defined as relying on alcohol to avoid withdrawal symptoms. Essentially, a person is controlled by their need to ingest alcohol to feel “normal.”

During any of these stages of alcohol use, someone may feel the need to seek treatment. The need for treatment varies for each person based on how dysfunctional or unmanageable their life has become due to their drinking.

Here are six things you (or anyone) can do to cut down on alcohol. Most of these mean a change in behavior.

1. Acknowledge the problem – in order to stop the behavior, you must first acknowledge what the negative behavior is and make a conscious effort to commit to changing that behavior. Also, put the goal in writing and make a list of reasons why you want to cut back on drinking. For example, if the behavior is drinking too much during celebrations, you have to determine what “too much” means to you and, next, set a goal to decrease the amount you are drinking during celebrations.

2. Set a realistic goal for drinking alcohol – if you struggle with binge drinking, set a realistic, and achievable goal. The next time you’re out during a social event, make it a goal to cut back to three to four drinks in two hours instead of five to six. Or perhaps instead of going to a happy hour on Friday or Saturday night, pick one night to go out and stay in the other night. Cutting back by making realistic and achievable goals will keep you on track and make you feel better about the fact that you are keeping your goals.

3. Write it down – make sure to keep a journal of the times you drink, how much you drink, and any negative outcomes related to the times you drink (for example, drinking and falling down or making an inappropriate comment to a friend). By keeping a journal, you will hopefully be able to see patterns of behavior. You can also share this journal with someone you trust and ask them to look out for any patterns you may have missed.

4. Don’t keep alcohol in your house – it is easier to come home after a long day of work and pour a glass of wine rather than going out to the bar on a Wednesday when you may have other obligations at home such as taking care of a child. When you don’t have alcohol in the house, it eliminates the desire or temptation to drink.

5. Stay busy – by having non-alcohol related activities to engage in, you are more likely to say no to drinking, as you’ll want to be present for the activity. Do things that keep you active, such as riding a bike, hiking, going for a walk as the endorphins from engaging in exercise may eliminate the desire for alcohol.

6. Ask for support/Talk to someone – tell people you trust about your goals and ask them to help keep you accountable during times when you may be struggling or find yourself surrounded by temptation. Also, there are therapists who specialize in alcohol/substance use who you can talk to that can assist you with your goals and process through any underlying emotions that may be related to drinking.

Remember that the above tips may not work for everyone. Some people may be into the stage of alcohol tolerance and dependence. If you or someone you love is struggling with alcohol dependence, reach out for help from a professional or call a treatment center in your area. Alcoholism and dependence look different for everyone.

Five Steps for Prevention from Watson Institute Experts

The Majority of Children with Autism Are Bullied—Do You Know How to Help?

Children with autism face unique social and education challenges that require attentive support. 1 in 59 children is diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. Boys are four times more likely than girls to have autism. Autism affects all ethnic and socioeconomic groups. Autism spectrum disorder encompasses a wide range of challenges with repetitive behaviors as well as social and communication skills.

For students with Autism, school can be daunting, as they are faced with social interactions and not feeling accepted. Coupled with that, children with Autism are at higher risk for being victimized or bullied by peers. Nearly two-thirds of children with autism between the ages of 6 and 15 have been bullied—over twice the rate of children without autism. 65% of parents report that their child had been victimized and 50% report being scared by their peers (Issues in Comprehensive Pediatric Nursing (2009)).  

These pressures can lead to refusal to attend school, anxiety or depression, and an overall decline in academic performance. This is borne out in the high school graduation rates for students with disabilities, which is only 67.1% (U.S. Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics), compared to an overall 84% graduation rate.

Clinical experts from the Watson Institute have five tips on combating bullying among all students, especially those with autism:

  1. Highlight individual strengths. Parents and teachers can be proactive by teaching children that it’s natural to expect others to be just like us, but the things that make us different are often the very things that make us special. Make a habit of complimenting students on their strengths—including in front of their peers.
  2. Widen perspectives. Teaching children to see things from more than one perspective is a key part of developing empathy. Help children connect beyond surface circumstances to underlying emotions. If a child makes fun of a student for not being good at something, ask them to reflect on something that is hard for them.
  3. Praise kindness. Children risk being teased or bullied themselves when they reach out to a student who is being bullied. It takes courage for students to act. Turn this perceived liability into an asset by applauding acts of kindness. This can be done individually, (“I saw how you stood up for Kyle and I’m really proud of you.”) and corporately, through public recognition or incentive programs.
  4. Get involved. If a bullying situation has developed, adult intervention is usually required. Leaving students to “work it out themselves” will often exacerbate or prolong a negative situation. Involve students and parents in addressing the situation. Approach the conversation with a problem-solving, not a punitive attitude.
  5. Provide support. Children can feel a range of emotions—from fear to shame and many more—when they’ve been the victim of bullying. Don’t assume because a child is no longer actively being bullied, that the situation is resolved. Make space for them to talk about their feelings and provide any additional support they need.

ABOUT THE WATSON INSTITUTE

The Watson Institute is organization providing special education programming as well as outpatient mental health services such as social skills groups, therapy, and evaluations for children ages 3 to 21.  www.thewatsoninstitute.org.

10 Tips to Make Yourself Look Attractive to Guys

Sequined embroidered babydoll? You don’t have to be a sexual tease to be more attractive to men. Here are 10 tips for boosting up your “it” factor when it comes to making sure the guy you have your eyes on has his eyes on you.

1. Have Fun

Debbie Downers aren’t fun to be around. People who are energetic and seem naturally happy, without faking it, are generally more attractive. My morning routine involves watching a 20-minute compilation of Jim Carrey’s funniest moments.

2. Variety

Routine builds discipline, which is crucial for staying ahead in life. However, when it comes to relationships (friendships or more), routines are the call of death. Invite spice into your life; if you are interesting, he will be interested in you.

3. Fitness

Burpees burns fat and tone your physique, making you look far more attractive. That said, what you eat plays just as an important role in your fitness as exercise. You don’t have to subscribe to any of the trendy diets rolling around out there, such as high carbs, no fat, no carbs, Keto, etc. Eat healthier – simple as that.

4. Money

How you treat your money shows people what your life values are. If you don’t make a lot of money, be upfront about it – and do not be a financial drain. (This advice applies to men, as well.) Nobody in the world is attracted to someone who continually spends other people’s money.

5. Your Voice

On average, a man who hears a woman with higher-pitched voices thinks she is younger and “more feminine.” With the exception of Scarlett Johansson, who has such a deep, husky voice that nobody can resist it. The same goes true for us: we’re drawn to men with lower-pitched voices.

6. Lingerie

When it comes to sexy women’s lingerie, there’s no denying that being risqué and revealing is attractive. What most women who wear these outfits don’t realise is: your comfort in the outfit amplifies your appeal. If you trust your man, and want to up your “it” factor, don’t be afraid of putting on something a little more… dangerous… than your everyday fashion.

7. Makeup

Most men aren’t interested in women who wear pounds of makeup on their face. Beauty products are made—despite what the fashion industry tells you—to enhance your natural beauty and highlight your prominent features.

8. Curves

Time has shown that men are drawn to women with curves. It’s a far cry from the times of old, when “toothpick-skinny” women dominated the world. If you have curves, don’t try to hide them. Embrace them.

9. Kindness

A friend of mine deliberated about proposing to his girlfriend. That changed one night when they went to the theatres to catch a movie. On their walk there, they passed by a homeless man. The girl went across the street to Subway, and 10 minutes later came out with a 12” BLT and large drink for the man. My friend saw (for himself) that her kindness made her special. He knew she was the one.

10. Your Authenticity

Weird is normal. Do you have odd quirks and eccentricities that got you teased and bullied in school? Embracing your individualism is what makes you most attractive – to anyone, regardless of gender.

Conclusion

These are not “rules” and shouldn’t be treated as such. What works for one person won’t work for someone else. It’s also crucial for you to remember to stay who you are as a woman: nobody in life is worth losing your sense of self.

Four Ways to Lose Belly Fat

Although it can be hard to target fat in order to burn it off your body, it is essential to your health to get rid of belly fat. This fat, also known as visceral fat, accumulates inside the body around vital organs. Fortunately, several ways to reduce belly fat exist, including those below.

Learn to De-Stress

One of the main causes of weight gain is stress. Many people eat when they are under stress, and their choice of snacks is usually salty, sugary, or processed foods. When people are under great amounts of stress, their body’s release cortisol, which in turn triggers insulin.

The insulin acts to lower your blood sugar, which can make you feel ravenously hungry, so you reach for anything that’s close at hand. It’s seldom healthy food that people binge on, so they end up gaining fat.

By learning to de-stress with yoga or meditation, you can stop the triggers that get you to eat unhealthy foods and gain fat around your middle.

Skip Sugary Drinks

Research has found that sugary drinks, like sodas, sweet tea or added sugar to coffee, can lead to having more visceral fat on your body. Visceral fat accumulates in the organs like the liver or heart, which can block it and result in heart attacks or strokes.

Instead of drinking sugary drinks, try replacing sodas with water and drink tea and coffee without sugar. Another cause of hunger can be dehydration, so if you’re craving food, drink a glass of water to hydrate your body to keep it healthy.

Add Supplements to Your Diet

Fat burning supplements and protein powders with fat burning ingredients like collagen can help reduce the fat gathering around your middle. Also, doing exercises targeting visceral fat will also reduce the fat in your abdominal area.

Losing this fat can prevent several serious diseases and help you live longer. Studies show that people with normal weight but with fat around their middles have shorter life spans than some people who are overweight. It’s not a bad idea to get more information about fat burning supplements.

Get a Good Night’s Rest

Studies show that younger people who sleep less than five hours a night can have much higher levels of cortisol and ghrelin. Ghrelin is a hormone that can make you feel hungry, which along with cortisol, makes it easier to gain weight, especially around the middle.

Getting more good quality sleep, about eight hours or more, can stop triggering these two hormones. It can also keep your metabolism running at a good pace. Poor sleep habits can lead to the body slowing the metabolism to conserve energy, which also causes weight gains.

Visceral or belly fat is bad for your health because it can lead to heart disease, diabetes, and fatty liver disease. Even if you are young and in good shape, having just a small amount of visceral fat around your abdomen can shorten your life.

However, if you follow these four tips and eat a healthy diet and exercise, then you can lose the fat around your middle and live longer.

Three Top Tips on Buying Your First Car

As soon as you pass your driving test, all you want to do is get out on the roads in your very own car. As exciting as this time may be, however, it’s still highly beneficial to exercise a bit of caution and patience. When it comes to buying your first motor there’s nothing smart about rushing in– doing so will see you face more problems further down the road.

Exercising caution doesn’t mean being inactive when it comes to finding the perfect car for you, though. You should still be proactive at this time, and you should still try to set up your life as a driver in the most fruitful way possible. To find three top tips on how to buy your first car in the right way, read on.

1. Sort out the financial aspects of the venture

Before you do anything else in your car-buying venture, you need to work out your budget as well as how much you are willing to spend. This is essential because it’ll stop your spending from spiraling out of control, no it’ll help you avoid paying too little and then having to face any buying regrets further down the line.

You also have to take future running costs into account. It’s no good just factoring the cost of the car into your financial plans. You also have to deliberate insuring the vehicle, getting it taxed, getting it tested, and then having work done to it to ensure it is roadworthy.

Something else that you must consider is how you are going to pay for your car. Are you able to buy the car outright, or will you be going down the financing route? Regarding the latter, if you wish to take out a car loan to cover your bill, then you should check out the best auto loans at Crediful.com. Doing so will help you make the most informed decision on the matter possible.

2. Be scrupulous when it comes to checking your chosen car

You may think that you have found the perfect car for you, but that might not necessarily be the case. Any vehicle can be made to look and sound good on the outside, but you cannot commit to anything until you’ve meticulously checked that your chosen car is in good working order. That means checking to ensure that the quality of your car is in keeping with its age, its model, and the number of miles it has to run; this means ensuring that the car can carry out all functions and purposes expected of it; and this means it matches its descriptions exactly. If you can’t perform these tests yourself, then have a trusted mechanic carry them out for you. Only then will any underlying problems with the car be unearthed, and only when these troubles are unearthed can you stop them from becoming actual headaches of yours.

If you want your first car to truly help you in your quest to grow as a driver, then it needs to be in full working order. Taking the above advice is the first step, but there is something else that you must do: take it for a spin. Only when you get behind the wheel yourself can you get a feel for the car’s capabilities. When you take it for a ride, you should test the clutch and the brakes to ensure they do not feel worn, you should head to a road where you can hit at least 60mph to ensure it is capable of high-speed driving, and you should make sure that the steering wheel does not vibrate while you drive.

3. Don’t trust everybody’s advice

As an inexperienced car owner, you will experience plenty of people sticking their nose into your car-buying business. The family members and friends of yours who own their own cars will try to give you an insight into car buying — their advice might come with the best of intentions, but they don’t know your situation quite like you do. There will even be car dealers out there who try to push you towards certain buys — the advice they give will be very much designed to sway you towards lining their pockets. This all means that the only person that you can really trust in this situation is yourself, and you’re the only one who can bring about the best results for you.

 

Your first car will always remain a favorite of yours, even after many years (and cars) have gone by. Be sure you invest in a car that’ll last for many years so that you do not have to worry about further expenses.

Tips From Dermatologists: The How-To Guide to Applying Topical Acne Medication

Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States, affecting up to 50 million Americans annually. However, despite its prevalence, accurate information about acne can be scarce.

Many teenagers and young adults believe that they have to let acne run its course instead of treating it, while others turn to do-it-yourself treatments–like applying diaper cream or toothpaste to pimples– without much success. Yet left untreated, say dermatologists from the American Academy of Dermatology, acne often results in significant physical and psychological problems, such as scarring, poor self-esteem, depression, and anxiety.

“As a dermatologist who treats patients with acne every day, I’ve seen firsthand the effects that acne can have on a person’s life, both physically and emotionally..If you find yourself in a bad mood or skipping outings with friends or family members because of acne, see a board-certified dermatologist for treatment,” says board-certified dermatologist Dee Anna Glaser, MD, FAAD, a professor and interim chair of dermatology at Saint Louis University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

Today, says Dr. Glaser, there are many effective treatments for acne, including medications that are applied to the skin, antibiotics and in-office procedures. Some treatments that are applied to the skin, such as products containing benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid or adapalene, are available over-the-counter.

However, whether a person is using an over-the-counter treatment or prescription medication, Dr. Glaser says it’s important to be patient regarding results. For example, it usually takes four to eight weeks to see improvement after using a topical medication– a treatment that is applied to the skin–and once acne clears, she says, it’s important to continue the treatment to prevent new breakouts.

It’s also important, says Dr. Glaser, to follow your dermatologist’s directions while using acne medication. Particularly for topical medications, the wrong application and skin care routine can lead to dry, irritated skin.

To get the greatest benefit from topical acne medications, Dr. Glaser recommends the following tips:

  1. Use a gentle face wash. A common misconception is that people need to use a strong face wash while also using topical acne medication. However, using a face wash that is too harsh while also using acne medication can dry out and irritate your skin. Instead, look for a mild, gentle face wash that says “oil-free” or “noncomedogenic” on the label, as these won’t clog your pores. Gently as the affected areas twice a day and after sweating.
  2. Use a pea-sized amount of medication. Using too much medication can irritate your skin, and using too little can hinder results. To make sure you’re using the right amount, put a pea-sized amount on your index finger and dot the medication on your forehead, cheeks and chin. Once dotted, rub it around to cover your whole face.
  3. Ease into the medication. Since it can take time for your skin to adjust to new medication, start by applying the product every other day instead of daily. If you don’t experience any negative side effects after a few weeks, like increased burning or redness, you can start applying the medicine every day.
  4. If irritation occurs, apply moisturizer before applying acne medication. Studies have shown that applying moisturizer before applying topical medication helps prevent the medication’s negative side effects–like peeling and redness–without changing its effectiveness. Make sure your moisturizer says “oil free” or “ocomedogenic”
  5. Protect your skin from the sun. Many acne medications cause increased sensitivity to sunlight, which can increase your chance of sunburn. Before going outdoors, apply a broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 to all exposed skin, including your scalp, ears, neck, and lips. Remember to reapply every two hours or immediately after sweating. You can also protect your skin by seeking shade and wearing protective clothing, including a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses with UV protection.

“Acne is a complex skin condition that can have many causes, including skin care products, fluctuating hormones, family history and stress,” says Dr. Glaser. “Further, not everyone’s acne can be treated the same way. If you have acne and over-the-counter medications aren’t bringing relief, make an appointment to see a board-certified dermatologist.”

In recognition of National Healthy Skin Month, the AAD is reminding the public about how to find trustworthy sources of information on skin disease, including acne, skin cancer, eczema, and psoriasis. A board-certified dermatologist has the education, training, and experience to provide the best possible medical, surgical, and cosmetic treatment to patients. After earning a bachelor’s degree and medical degree, board-certified dermatologists must complete four additional years of education, including a one year internship and three yeas of dermatology residency. Before seeking dermatologic care, the AAD recommends that everyone make sure their dermatologist is board-certified by the American Board of Dermatology, the American Osteopathic Association, or the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.

To find a board-certified dermatologist in your area click here.

The tips above are demonstrated in a video here that is posted to the AAD website and YouTube channel. This video is part of the AAD’s “Video of the Month” series, which offers tips people can use to properly care for their skin, hair, and nails. A new video in the series posts to the AAD website and YouTube channel each month.

About the AAD

Headquartered in Rosement, Ill, the American Academy of Dermatology, founded in 1938, is the largest, most influential, and most representative of all dermatologic associations. With a membership of more than 19,000 physicians worldwide, the AAD is committed to: advancing the diagnosis and medical, surgical and cosmetic treatment of the skin, hair, and nails; advocating high standards in clinical standards in clinical practice, education, and research in dermatology; and supporting and enhancing patient care for a lifetime of healthier skin, hair, and nails . For more information, contact the AAD at 888-462-DERM (3376) or aad.org. Follow the ADD on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or YouTube