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Feel stronger, healthier & more powerful this summer by staying hydrated.

All month long in July, we will be touching on many health and wellness exercises and treatments that can help to make you a healthier, more powerful individual―both physically and mentally. While many of the articles we are going to be featuring will teach you how to stimulate your mood, your wellness and your mind, there is one vital factor that we feel it is important to cover first: hydration.

Without proper hydration, no matter how much you work out or how positive you may want to feel, your body will not be able to achieve the healthy, powerful results that you are looking for. This is because the human brain is made up 75% from liquid and requires constant rehydration and fluids. Therefore, even the slightest amount of dehydration can cause a person to feel lazy, sluggish, unmotivated and tired.

Staying hydrated is even more important and difficult during the summer months. When you combine the heat from the sun with fun summer activities such as hiking, swimming, walking and gardening, it can result in dangerous heat-related problems and an extreme loss in bodily fluids.

Why Is Water Important to Our Health?

Every single cell in the body requires constant water in order to function correctly. Just 10 minutes out in the hot summer sun can lead to sweating, a dry mouth and a feeling of thirst, which are all signs that your body is already dehydrated.

Also, not only does staying hydrated play a vital role in your cognitive performance and general well being, but it can be a helpful factor in maintaining and losing weight. This is because water helps carry out the toxins in your body which, in turn, increases your metabolism and causes you to feel full.

How to Stay Hydrated in the Summer

So, now that you know all about the positive benefits of staying hydrated in the summer, how can you ensure that your body stays stronger and healthier through the warm weeks ahead? There are several things you can do to ensure that your body gets the correct amount of water that it needs to function properly:

Drink lots of Fluids: Obviously the most efficient way to get a large amount of water back into your body is to drink water. Doctors recommend that the average person drinks at least eight cups of water a day, but each body type needs a different about of hydration. To find out how much water your body needs daily, divide your body weight by 2 and that will determine the number of ounces needed.

Water is not the only fluid source that can help you stay hydrated; juice, skim milk and sports drinks are all great ways to increase the amount of water in your body. If you don’t like drinking plain water, you could also try adding certain elements to change the taste―Lemon is a beneficial add-in that helps keep your liver healthy. Also try adding flavors such as mint, citrus fruits, cucumber, or strawberries for a different taste with the same hydration levels. However, be sure to avoid alcohol, caffeinated and sugar-filled drinks, as these can ask as a diuretic and actually may cause you to lose more fluid than you are consuming.

Eat Hydrating Foods: Often times, water-rich foods can help supplement your water intake better than just drinking water by itself. Many fruits such as watermelon and cantaloupe can help to greatly replenish the amount of water in your body. Vegetables such as celery and cucumber are also very helpful when avoiding dehydration.

No water what your favorite summer activities are―working out, swimming, walking outside, laying out in the sun―it is important that you stay cool and avoid overexertion during hot summer weather. Making simple changes in your water intake can help you to remain healthy, strong and fit all summer long.

 

Image Source: Jupiter Images

The power of long lashes & tips on how to increase their length.

It’s only natural for a woman to want to feel attractive and noticed when she walks into a room. It gives you a sense of confidence and power when all eyes are drawn to you  and you look and feel your very best. While a great body or a fantastic wardrobe can really make a woman shine, one of the most attention-grabbing features of any person is their eyes.

Think about it―One of the first things you notice about a person’s face when you see them for the first time is their eyes: What color they are, what they say about a person’s emotions and feelings, whether or not they are making eye contact. There is a common saying that says “the eyes are the windows to a person’s soul,” and it can be very true.

 

 

There are many ways that a person can improve and feature their eyes:  mascara, eyebrow waxes, eye shadow, eyelash curlers, eyeliner, etc. However, while makeup can definitely enhance and improve a person’s eyes, it cannot always substitute for something that isn’t there, such as short, stubby eyelashes.

In many cultures, long, beautiful eyelashes are considered a sign of femininity and elegance. Even in the United States, many women strive for longer, fuller lashes every day through the use of lengthening mascara or false adhesives. However, while these solutions used to be the only way to achieve this highly coveted physical feature, there are now a wealth of products available for women who want envy-worthy lashes.

Why Consider Longer, Fuller Eyelashes?

There are a number of reasons why women wish for longer lashes. Most of the time, it is to enhance their eyes and improve their overall appearance. However, the benefits of longer lashes can go well beyond beauty. Eyelashes play a crucial role in the health of your eyes. They serve as a protective shield to keep foreign matter out of the eye and also stimulate a person’s blink reflex.

As you get older, time and abuse can damage your natural eyelashes, causing them to grow in thinner and more sparse than they may have when you were younger. A women’s makeup routine can also be an eyelashes’ worst enemy. For instance, sleeping in mascara or rubbing and tugging makeup remover across your eyelids can damage the thickness and growth of your lashes.

How Do You Get Beautifully Long Lashes?

There are a number of eyelash growth products on the market that can help you to achieve longer, thicker lashes in just a few weeks.

Latisse is one of the most popular, effective ways to naturally grow longer eyelashes. This FDA-approved treatment is applied topically once a day to the base of your upper eyelashes. The prescription then works by mimicking hormones called prostaglandins which lengthen the lash growth rate. Results are typically noticed after just eight weeks, with full results around week 16.

For those who are serious about growing longer, fuller lashes, schedule a consultation with your health and wellness doctor to see if this treatment options would work well for you. No longer worry about the pain and hassles of using fake eyelashes every time you want to have swoon-worthy eyes. With natural eyelash growth products, you too can have gorgeous longer lashes that enhance your eyes all season long.

 

Image source: Jupiter Images

How to maintain a healthy diet that will lead to positive results.

While many people love the warm weather and weekends at the beach that come along with summer, this season also brings with it a love/hate relationship in many people, all surrounding one particular topic―bathing suit season.

Breaking out the bikinis and swimsuits often triggers a unique response in many people, and a surge in popularity at every gym in town. There is an invasion of “quick, simple diet” articles in every magazine and everyone seems to be looking for their own fool-proof answer for looking great at the beach and losing weight fast.

 

 

However, when beginning any type of diet or weight-loss program, it is important to understand the many do’s and don’ts of proper nutrition. Here are a few tips for losing extra pounds, maintaining a healthy weight and managing a safe diet routine this summer:

1. Do Understand That Dieting is Not a “Quick-Fix.”

One of the biggest reasons that people typically fail when they begin a new diet is because they expect to see noticeable improvements in a very short amount of time. However, dieting and weight-loss is a long-term commitment, not a simple, “quick-fix” weeklong program.

When beginning any kind of new weight-loss program, it is important to set realistic short and long-term goals for yourself. Making gradual changes to your overall lifestyle typically means that you are a lot less likely to give up on your diet, compared to jumping right in to a heap of unrealistic expectations.

It is also important that you are losing weight in a healthy amount of time. You should never lose more than two pounds per week. This could mean that not only is your body losing fat, but there is a good chance that it is also losing water, electrolytes and muscle. This is a surefire way to slow down your metabolism which could set you up for yo-yo weight cycling.

2. Don’t Resort to Crash Dieting or Weight-Loss “Fads.”

Dieting results that sound too good to be true usually are. While a drastic crash diet may help you to reduce weight in the beginning, it can cause dangerous problems later down the road. It can also cause you to feel week, tired and moody.

When considering a new diet, always ask yourself these questions:

  • Does the diet promise quick, easy results?
  • Does the diet require little or no physical activity?
  • Does the diet follow rigid menu plans and strict eating methods?
  • Does the diet use terms such as “miracle diet,” “guaranteed success,” or “newly discovered” resources?

If so, there is a good chance that you are looking at a fad diet.

3. Do Listen to Your Body.

You should never force your body to do something that is not healthy for it. Therefore, eat when you’re hungry, stop when you’re full and never, ever starve yourself. Research has shown that while you may lose weight from not eating, this weight loss is coming from your muscle tissue, not from fat. Think of it as trying to see how far your car could make it while coasting on empty. You may be able to get to where you want, but it’s not going to be good for your car in the long run. Always be sure to give your body the daily fuel and energy that it needs.

4. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

Many reasons that people decide to try quick-fix diets or extreme weight loss programs in the first place is because they are trying to look a certain way. Unfortunately, most of the time, it is a form or figure that is either unrealistic for their body, or unrealistic period. Just because clothes and bathing suits are made in a size zero doesn’t mean that you should try to fit into that size. For many people, achieving this size would lead to an unhealthy lifestyle.

Your body is your own and it works in the way that is best for it. While it may seem frustrating that some people have an easier time losing weight than others, you have to focus on what is healthy and realistic for you. However, it is important to remember that while your body may control a large fraction of your figure and size, you control a fraction as well.

If you are thinking of going on a weight-loss diet, be sure to speak with a healthcare provider for a professional perspective on which weight-loss method is best for you and your body type. No matter what size you are, maintaining a healthy lifestyle and being happy with your body will help to ensure that you look glowing and healthy this bathing suit season.

 

Image source: Jupiter Images

How to treat laser toenail fungus using GenesisPlus Laser Treatments.

Now that summer has officially begun, it is time to say farewell to your warm winter wardrobe, pack away the winter boots and slippers, and break out your cute wedge sandals and colorful flip flops for the season. However, while going shoeless on the beach may be a highlight of summer for some people, it can be a large source of discomfort and embarrassment for others.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, nearly 12% of all Americans suffer from some variety of ongoing toenail fungus each year. This infection, typically found in older individuals, can cause a person’s toenails to grow abnormally, become discolored, and may even cause pain when walking.

Luckily, new laser therapy treatments such as GenesisPlus are now available to help treat toenail fungus without the long-term treatment and hassle of oral medication and topical creams. But first, before learning about the different ways that you can treat toenail fungus, it is important to learn about the causes and treatments of this mild infection:

Where Does Toenail Fungus Come From?

Onychomycosis, better known as toenail fungus, is a fungal infection of the toes that can cause a person’s nails to become discolored and brittle. While the infection is most common in older individuals, anyone can get it, especially if toenail fungus is inherent within their family.

Toenail fungus can also be common in swimmers and other athletes who regularly go barefoot in public or have damp feet. While this infection is generally just a cosmetic problem while in its mild forms, it can cause pain and serious side-effects over time.

How Do You Treat Toenail Fungus?

Until now, many people have attempted to treat their toenail fungal infections through medication and topical creams. However, these creams typically have a very low success rate (less than 18%) and require daily application over a 9-12 month period. Like topical creams, medication can be an expensive, long-term  option for the treatment of toenail fungus. Many medications also have been known to have problematic side effects such as potential liver toxicity.

Given these facts, one of the safest and simplest treatments options available to combat toenail fungus is through laser light therapy such as GenesisPlus. This new treatment options allows for efficient treatment of an affected area, all within a short amount of time.

The GenesisPlus laser toenail fungus treatments work by applying a laser light source to the areas that are infected, targeting the fungal infection in the toenail. Once found, the GenesisPlus laser will destroy the infection by using a specific wavelength that only targets the living fungi. This allows for a relatively quick, painless treatment because infected areas are made up of dead cells―a cell in the skin that has expired.

As your nail grows out, the new, healthy nail growth will appear free of a discolored, brittle appearance. Therefore, once your nails have fully grown out, you will see the full results of the laser toenail fungus treatments.

A growing number of health and wellness centers, including the Dr. Shel Wellness and Medical Spa, offer this simple, painless laser procedure that will help to eliminate a toenail fungal infection. Call and make an appointment today so that you can enjoy the rest of your summer without feeling embarrassed about how your toes look in flip flops and sandals.

“Green” fitness has positive effects on your mind and your overall well being.

There is no debating the numerous health benefits that come along with daily fitness and exercise: improved health and form, a reduced risk of illness and disease, and a significant decrease in stress and anxiety levels.

However, daily fitness is not the only way to improve your overall well being. Spending time outdoors, in the presence of nature, can also have many positive effects on the mind and the body. So, what happens when you combine the two and exercise outside?

Recent studies have found that green exercise―physical activity outside in the presence of nature―can lead to positive short and long-term health benefits on your mind, body and spirit.

Benefits of Green Exercise

Compared to exercising indoors, exercising in natural environments has been shown to decrease tension, anger, anxiety and depression. Many scientists believe the reason for this lies in the fact that, for many people, nature is a “restorative environment.”

Restorative environments are best described as places that can help to relieve people of stress and boost energy. Many scientists also believe that these environments can help to bring people more in touch with themselves and enhance a person’s feelings of “oneness” between their body and nature.

While all natural environments have beneficial health changes for those working out, individuals who exercised near a body of water generated the greatest effects.

A Little Goes a Long Way

One of the most surprising conclusions that came from these studies was the fact that people don’t have to spend a long time exercising outdoors in order to experience these benefits. In fact, research found that just five minutes of simple green exercise helped to make people happier, less fatigued and more relaxed.

While it is important to exercise for more than five minutes if you are looking to improve your health, many people will be happy to know that a simple five-minute walk around the block is enough to improve your overall mood. This can be especially helpful for those who only get a short break from work during the day and are looking for a way to improve their self esteem.

Quick Ways to Exercise Outdoors

It can be difficult for many people to escape from their hectic work day and get in some quality exercise. However, even five minutes outside can change your outlook and feelings towards the rest of the work day.

Here are some simple ways to get your daily dose of five minute green exercise:

  • Take a walk or jog around your neighborhood when you wake up in the morning or get home from work each night
  • If you live near your workplace, consider walking or riding your bike to and from work
  • Create a simple stretching routine that you can do outside during your lunch break
  • Take your pet to a local park for a walk each morning
  • Create an outdoor garden in your backyard

Outdoor exercise is an effective way to get in touch with your mind, body and spirit. Even just five minutes of outdoor fitness in the presence of nature can help to improve your mood, self-esteem and mental health.

 

Image source: Jupiter Images

Laser Hair Removal can help you have a confident, hair-free summer.

Now that summer is officially here, it is time to dig out the shorts and bathing suits, hit the beach and take advantage of the wonderful weather. However, while many people look forward to hiding their winter wardrobe away for a few warm months, breaking out your short shorts and tank tops comes with a lot of upkeep and maintenance on unwanted body hairs.

Spending one day at the beach can mean hours of bothersome hair removal for some people: Shaving your legs, waxing your eyebrows, threading lip hairs, trimming your bikini line, shaving your under arms…  all of this constant upkeep on unwanted body hair can be irritating and painful.

Luckily, there is a faster, easier way of achieving hair-free summer skin. Laser hair removal has become one of the most popular hair-removal methods for people who are looking to achieve smooth skin and rock their teeny bikinis in confidence all summer long.

How Does Laser Hair Removal Work?

Laser hair removal is a medical procedure that uses light energy to deliver intense, pulsating beams of light to hundreds of hair follicles at a time, removing an entire area of unwanted hairs in just minutes.

The lasers, which are safe for all skin types, pass through a person’s skin to the root of their hair follicle. The heat from the laser damages the hair follicle, halting future hair growth. While neither pain medication nor anesthesia are required during the hair removal process, patients may request to use a topical anesthetic during the procedure if they have sensitive skin.

How Effective is Laser Hair Removal?

The effectiveness of laser hair removal can differ between each individual. Different characteristics such as skin type, hair type, pigment and hormones are all factors in determining how well laser hair removal may work for each person. Physicians will evaluate each of these specific factors and determine which hair removal treatment option will produce the most desirable results for each individual.

While you may notice a significant reduction in hair growth after one laser hair removal treatment, it may take several treatments to halt hair growth completely. However, after just two or three treatments, most patients notice an 80-90% reduction in hair growth in the area that was treated.

Which Areas of the Body Can Laser Hair Removal Treat?

Laser hair removal is a popular treatment for both women and men. It can help to remove hair on almost any part of the body including legs, arms, chin, upper lip, face, neck, bikini line, back, shoulders, etc.

Some of the most popular treatments for women in the summer consist of leg hair and bikini line hair removal. If you plan on being in a bathing suit frequently this summer, eliminating hair in these areas can help to give peace-of-mind against stray hairs escaping.

Many men also choose to get laser hair removal treatments for back hair and chest and abdominal hair. If you prefer a clean, smooth appearance, these procedures are great for treating large areas of hair and can help cut daily grooming time in half.

Whether you enjoy a summer full of shorts and tank tops, swimming in the pool or simply lounging in your bathing suit on the beach, laser hair treatment can save you time and patience while also giving you a great sense of confidence this summer season.

 

Image source: Jupiter Images

Finding the right sunscreen that will protect your skin against summer sun.

Summer is the best time of year to spend long days outdoors, take advantage of the warm weather and soak up the summer sun. However, while these things can be some of the most enjoyable aspects of summer, they can also be the most dangerous.

The sun’s rays are stronger in the summer than at any other time of year which can lead to a dangerous amount of sun exposure.  While too much sun can lead to freckles, wrinkles, age spots and dry skin, UV radiation from the sun is also the leading cause of skin cancer.

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States with more than 3.5 million cases of skin cancer diagnosed annually. One of the most serious types of skin cancer, Melanoma, is responsible for  more than 73% of skin cancer deaths with over 1 million new cases being diagnosed in the United States annually.

The best way to protect against sun exposure and skin cancer is through wearing proper sunscreen. However, with all of varieties, types, brands, and SPFs, it can be confusing trying to find the best sunscreen for your body.

Choosing The Right SPF

The most important thing to consider when choosing a sunscreen is the sun protection factor. Sun protection factor, or SPF, measures the length of time that a product blocks out the sun’s harmful rays. For instance, if you normally start to get sun burned after 10 minutes in the sun, a sunscreen with SPF 15 should allow you to stay out of the sun 15 times longer (150 minutes) before burning.

However, this can vary depending on how much sunscreen you put on and the amount of time since you last applied it. Sunscreen should be reapplied every two hours and immediately after going in the water. You need at least a tablespoon’s worth of sunscreen to cover your face and ears, and a shot glass-sized amount to cover each exposed area of your body (legs, shoulders, stomach, etc.)

You should also be aware that a higher SPF doesn’t always mean a longer amount of time you can stay in the sun. A higher SPF simply means that it absorbs more UV rays. For example, an SPF of 2 will absorb 50% of UV rays, SPF 15 absorbs 93%, SPF 34 absorbs 97%, etc.

Includes UVA and UVB Protection

Your sunscreen should also provide broad-spectrum protection. Typical sunscreen only protects against UVB (burning) rays while sunscreen with broad-spectrum protection also helps protect your skin from UVA (aging) rays.

This is very important because UVA rays have been directly linked to melanoma skin cancers along with wrinkles and other serious signs of sun damage. Be sure to look for ingredients in your sunscreen such as zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, or Mexoryl which all protect against UVA rays.

Waterproof vs. Water Resistant

It’s also very important to understand the difference between waterproof and water resistant when choosing your sunscreen. The FDA considers a product “water resistant” if it maintains its SPF level after 40 minutes in the water. However, a product is considered  “waterproof” if its SPF level is maintained following 80 minutes of water exposure.

If you are frequently involved in water sports and activities throughout the summer such as swimming, boating or water skiing, it may be more beneficial to choose a waterproof sunscreen rather than one that is water resistant.

Whether or not you are heading outdoors for the day or for just 20 minutes, applying the proper type of sunscreen is essential to protecting your skin against the sun’s harmful UV rays. After all, it is much easier to take steps to prevent skin damage early on that it is to reverse it later down the road.

 

Image source: Jupiter Images

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