Mental Well-Being

Your Anxiety Loves Sugar. Here Are A Few Reasons Why!

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If you feel you are facing anxiety, it might be worth it to watch what you are eating. While ditching artificial sugar can result in a physically healthier you, it’s the impact sugar has on our mental health that’s worth taking a second look at.

 

Sugar leads to highs and lows

Consuming a large amount of processed sugar can trigger feelings of worry, irritability, sadness or even depression. A sugar rush can even leave you feeling nervous, foggy, irritable, jittery, and drained.

 

It can worsen your anxiety
If you are dealing with anxiety, then you know how disastrous it is to binge on sugar. Sugar can weaken your body’s ability to respond to stress, which can trigger your anxiety and prevent you from dealing with the cause of the stress.

 

Sugar can increase your risk of developing depression

If you are dealing with depression, sometimes food can serve as a form of self-medication. Overconsumption of sugar triggers imbalances in certain brain chemicals. These imbalances can lead to depression.

People Faces Covered with Happy Expression Emotion Balloons

If you’re craving sugar, here are a few low -sugar alternatives you can indulge in instead:

Chocolate dipped strawberries

– Pancakes

– Cinnamon apple pudding

– Baked blueberry cheesecake
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If you plan on processed sugar, don’t deny yourself the pleasure of sweet-tasting food because suddenly stopping your sugar intake can be harmful for you. So make sure you still enjoy your favourite foods – by making them healthy and consuming in smaller portions.

5 Surprising Things That Are Contagious And You Had No Clue!

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Germs aren’t the only things you have to worry about “catching.” Discover what else you can catch from the people you spend most of the day with!

 

Restaurant orders:

Research tells us that people are happier ordering food nutritionally similar to that of their companions. If you’re watching your diet, place your order first so that you’re not tempted by your friends’ cravings.

Group of friends eating together

Negative thinking:

If you are with someone who is prone to focusing on the negative aspect of life, it is quite possible that you will catch that feeling and start following the same pattern.

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Happiness:

Yes, smiling is contagious. People can catch each other’s happiness by just watching each other and finding pleasure the other person’s happiness.

Diverse people holding emoticon

Desire for new things:

It’s no coincidence you suddenly want a branded shoe after your friend’s gets one. When this happens, remind yourself of how thankful you are for what you already own.

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Loneliness:

Yes, loneliness can definitely spread from one person to another. So, when one person starts to feel lonely, it can spread thoughts of loneliness through negative social interactions.

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Have you ever experienced any of these things? Maybe even something different? What is that one thing you have caught from your family, friends or colleagues? Feel free to share your experiences with us!


References:
https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/health-fitness/health-news/7-surprising-things-that-are-contagious-and-you-had-no-clue-about-it/photostory/66649130.cms

7 Absolutely Natural Thoughts You Can Get While Meditating!

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Meditation has been practiced for thousands of years, and is good for your body as well as for your mind. Practicing meditation regularly can ward away stress and make you feel healthier.

 

It doesn’t matter if you’re just beginning to meditate or trying to get back into the habit, if you practice meditation, we’re pretty sure you’ve had at least one of, or even all of these thoughts!

  1. This is going to be so easy!
    The idea of just sitting and doing nothing…It’s going to be a piece of cake.

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  2. Do i keep my eyes open or closed?
    What if I’m doing it wrong? Can you meditate wrong?
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  3. Has it been ten minutes yet? I’m getting tired.
    I shouldn’t look. The timer will go off any second. It’s fine.
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  4. Did I leave the stove on? I definitely left something on.
    Whoops, I think I lost my focus again.

  5. Oh my god, I want ice cream. Lots and lots of ice cream.
    After meditation, I definitely deserve it.
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  6. Oh my god, it’s over.
    If they gave out medals for meditating, I would definitely win the gold for Worst Meditator Ever.
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  7. Am I glowing? I feel like I’m glowing.
    My skin better feels fabulous after this. I have gone through so much.

 

No matter what you’re thinking while meditating, remember that it’s perfectly fine for your mind to wander. Be gentle with yourself, guide your thoughts back to where you *want* to focus, and keep practicing.

Reference:
https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/health-fitness/de-stress/14-absolutely-normal-thoughts-you-get-while-meditating/articleshow/66750486.cms

How To Be Awesome 101

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When we begin to brighten our view of the world, and infuse more positivity into our thought patterns, something magical starts to happen to us. We start to become awesome!

 

Here are a few steps that can help you achieve this state-of-mind and make a profound change in your life:

Don’t let the fear of being judged dull your light:

When you’re faced with criticism, smile and move forward with positive energy, and don’t let a bad experience make you bitter. Go out there, be yourself and shine!

 

Be open-minded and believe in your awesomeness:

 

Accept every kind word and compliment. Bask in it and try to do it better each time. Also when you are shining, make sure you appreciate others and let them have a brighter moment too.

 

Practice Gratitude:

 

One of the ways to shift your focus away from negativity is to list the things in your life for which you are grateful. Be grateful to be gainfully employed, to sleep in a bed each night, for the sun that comes up each morning, and for the people that love and care for you.

 

Ditch the Crabs:

 

If you put a crab in a bucket, it will easily climb out. But if you put a second crab in the bucket, none of them will let the other escape. In other words, surround yourself with positive people. If you get trapped in a negative conversation,  try to change the subject to something more positive.

 

Life is not always easy. However, it is our own perspective that ultimately determines if we go through it puckered and sour, or skip along with a glass of sweet lemonade.

References-
https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/health-fitness/de-stress/how-to-be-radiant-101/articleshow/66374775.cms

4 Small Stresses in Daily Life That You Can Easily Eliminate

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Stress for most people is caused by a variety of factors—major transitions, illnesses and injuries, money issues, a too-busy schedule—the list goes on and on. These tend to mess with your wellbeing and pose long-term effects to your health.

 

Before you start to feel even more stressed, take a deep breath—because we’ve got your back.

 

We rounded up 4 of the common stressors, as well as foolproof ways to outsmart them so they don’t bring you (or your body) down.

Traffic Jams During the Morning Commute

It is believed that honking and the sound of traffic can trigger elevated stress levels. There’s nothing you can do about traffic, but you can minimize the effect it has on you.

Leaving with enough time so that if a traffic jam occurs… you’re not going to be bothered by it and if you get caught in a traffic jam, it is what it is. Don’t get upset about it. Listen to your favourite music or an audio book.

View at young handsome man driving modern car

 

Too Much Technology

If you can’t be 30 minutes without checking your instagram or text messages, you may experience higher stress levels than someone who completely unplugs.

Sure, you may need your smartphone or tablet, but it’s necessary to set boundaries. It is advisable to shut down all devices two or three hours before bed to allow your mind time to unwind.

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Perfectionism

Some people have to do everything so perfectly and feel like mistakes are completely unacceptable. However, nobody is perfect, and if you’re reaching for perfection, you’re only going to succeed at stressing yourself out.

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Toxic Relationships

Whether it’s a so-called friend, a co-worker, neighbor, or miserable relative ,some people may drain the life out of you and cause you stress. The last thing you need is a toxic relationship adding stress to your life.

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Don’t let these mess with your wellbeing. What are some other stressors that you face on a daily basis? How do you avoid it?

Let us know your suggestions and tips in the comments below.

 

 

References:
https://greatist.com/grow/subtle-stressors

Can you handle the truth?

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Though we all value honestly in our lives, many times, we find ourselves avoiding being honest with people in our everyday lives. We’re often reluctant to have completely honest conversations with others thinking that offering critical feedback or opening up about our secrets will be uncomfortable for both the parties.

Well, new research explores the consequences of honesty in everyday life and determines that people can often afford to be more honest than they think.
Researchers have found that such fears are often misguided. Honest conversations are far more enjoyable when it comes to communication than we expect them to be, and listeners of honest conversations react less negatively than expected.

So let’s explore why we find it so hard to be honest, and work towards having healthier conversations in our lives.

Why does it often take courage to face the truth?

 

The truth comes will all kinds of discomfort, disappointment, and responsibility which we would rather like to  avoid. It can sometimes be difficult to sink in. It can be challenging, and it means that it could be time to pull our heads out of the sand, and do something to help ourselves.

What are some of the truths we resist facing?

Here are some of the truths that the people must muster the courage to face:

While we did not entirely create our problems, we are responsible for dealing with them.
– Holding onto grievances doesn’t do anybody any good.
– The future is is not predetermined; we can do better.

– We make mistakes, hurt other people, have aggressive, selfish, greedy impulses.

 

Now, if you have trouble accepting some of these as truths, feel free to take them with a grain of salt or throw them out altogether. But instead, we suggest you stop and think why you might want to dismiss them.  Perhaps what we’re saying is worth considering. Maybe it takes courage to face some of these truths about life. And maybe your life would be different—even better—if you could.

 

References:

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/headshrinkers-guide-the-galaxy/201112/can-you-handle-the-truth
https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/health-fitness/de-stress/people-can-handle-the-truth-more-than-you-think/articleshow/66313078.cms

What could your sudden weight gain mean?

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You’re religious about your diet & exercise, but notice your weighing scale going up. What could possibly explain this?!

 

First things first. In order to make sure you aren’t overreacting, keep a log of everything you eat, as well as your exercise habits (including outside-the-gym activity) for about a week or two.

 

Once you rule out diet or exercise, you can start thinking about what other potential health issues may be messing with your waistline.

 

Here we give you 4 conditions that could explain your sudden weight gain!

Insomnia

Putting off sleep to watch just one more episode on Netflix? That hour could be contributing to weight gain. A study has found that people that sleep for 7-8 hours do not experience sudden weight gain. Sleep deprivation can also affect your decision making. Let’s say you have a choice between an apple or a cookie. When you’re tired, you become more impulsive, leading you to reach over for that cookie without a second thought!

A man with sleeping issue

Dehydration

Adequate hydration increases mitochondrial function—what that basically means is that it increases your metabolism rate. Without sufficient water, your cells can’t function well (namely, convert your food into energy) quickly and efficiently.

A glass of water macro shot

PCOS

Research shows that as many as one in five women have polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)—an endocrine disorder that throws off the balance of reproductive hormones estrogen and testosterone, and can trigger a number of unpleasant symptoms like irregular periods, facial hair growth, migraines and weight gain
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Mood Disorders

Depression and anxiety can both can lead to fatigue, irritability, and a lack of focus. It is quite possible that all the three can throw you off your game when you work out or lead you to ditch the gym altogether…and pretty soon your kilos will start packing on.

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Carrying extra kilos isn’t necessarily a problem, of course. But sudden gain in weight could signal an underlying health issue you’ll want to address. It could be a hormone condition, a mood disorder, or another factor altering your physiology without you realizing it. The only way to be 100% sure is to consult your doctor.

References:
https://www.health.com/mind-body/sudden-weight-gain-causes

A Guide to Self-Health: How to stop being Self-Blaming and Self-Critical

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Maybe it’s a persistent nagging or a voice in your head warning you that you better do well in that interview and not screw it up, or maybe it’s a simple, but powerful, wave of guilt that lets you know that you once again didn’t measure up.

However it strikes, self-criticism is your worst enemy – it can lower your self esteem, and keep you constantly worried and on-edge about the future.

 

It’s important that we learn to be self-compassionate. The best way to dismantle self-blame and self-criticism is through therapy, but there are some self-help techniques you can try:

  • Work on seeing yourself wholly – Both self-blame and self-criticism rely on reducing a person to a small number of character flaws that supposedly define him or her. Journaling can help you begin to see yourself with greater clarity, as can talking to close friends about how they see you, in all your complexity.
  • Develop self-compassion – Be kind and understanding of yourself. Be aware of painful feelings without being overwhelmed by them or overly identifying with them. Replace self-critical messages with more positive and realistic ones. Example: I am a good person and proud of what I have accomplished.
  • Mindfulness – Focusing attention on the present moment will help you accomplish this. Using meditation allows for an open and curious attitude about one’s current thoughts and a conscious awareness of the one’s feelings in the present moment. Watch videos that teach meditation for beginners and practice it.

 

In the end, it’s all about treating yourself the way you would ideally like to treat your own child, about getting off that train that says there are only right and wrong ways of running your life.

 

It’s about truly becoming your own best friend.

 

References:

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/tech-support/201801/tackling-self-blame-and-self-criticism-5-strategies-try

https://www.mentalhelp.net/blogs/are-you-self-blaming-and-self-critical/

Loneliness, A Health Hazard

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Loneliness is a state of mind. A state of mind in which people feel empty and unwanted. People who are lonely often want to interact with people or make human contact, but their state of mind makes it more difficult to form connections with other people.

 

There are two different kinds of loneliness: subjective and objective. Objective loneliness is when a person experiences a physical state of being alone or socially isolated. While subjective loneliness, on the other hand, refers to the feeling of being alone — even though you are not actually alone. It’s an emotional rather than physical state of mind.

 

Loneliness can harm a person’s state of mind to the extent that it may cause damage to one’s mental and physical health. Studies show that social isolation and loneliness increase the flow of stress hormones.When a person is lonely they  produce stress hormones. As a result, this can affect how you feel and can affect your brain’s ability to control behaviour and body functions.

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Some of the causes of loneliness are-

* Depression and suicide

* Cardiovascular disease and stroke

* Increased stress levels

* Decreased memory and learning

* Antisocial behavior

* Poor decision-making

* Alcoholism and drug abuse

* The progression of Alzheimer’s disease

* Altered brain function

What can cause loneliness?

Loneliness can be caused by a failure to communicate, engage in discourse and be committed to each other and the community. James J. Lynch coined the term ‘toxic talk’. According to him it is the destruction of self-esteem that leads to loneliness. Criticism, negativity, lack of praise, lack of warm feeling, rejection and other factors that increase alienation and distance between people characterize toxic talk.

 

How do you cope from being lonely?

 

  1. Understand that loneliness is a sign that something needs to change.
  2. Understand how it affects your life – both physically and mentally.
  3. Consider doing activities that you enjoy. These situations present great opportunities to meet people and cultivate new friendships and social interactions.
  4. Focus on developing quality relationships with people who share similar attitudes, interests and values like you.
  5.  Focus on positive thoughts and attitudes in your social relationships and try to nurture them.

 

You won’t be able to cure all your health issues by spending time with others, but making sure you have a healthy social circle may help. And if these health symptoms persist, speaking with your doctor or a therapist for help.

 

References:

 

https://www.thisisinsider.com/effects-loneliness-health-2018-6#it-might-lead-to-more-unhealthy-behaviors-10

4 Ways to help our Elderly Loved-Ones age Independently!

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Many of us would definitely prefer that our elderly loved-ones stay in our homes to ensure they are well taken care of and properly cared for. Nevertheless, this situation can become very stressful for the family as leaving an aging parent home alone can pose a major issue if anything goes wrong. With that said, we all know some elderly people would want to live independently and today’s technology is striving to make that choice easier by providing families peace of mind so their elderly loved ones can age independently.

A senior Indian couple sharing a laugh together

A senior Indian couple sharing a laugh together

Even with a good retirement plan, two-thirds of older adults still need some form of assistance to go about their daily lives. If you want to ensure that they live comfortably, here are four things to consider when elderly parents choose to live home alone:

 

  1. Essential Needs Delivered to the Door

 

To make things a bit simpler, efficient and work-from-home friendly, consider online grocery shopping to help your loved-ones reduce the physical stress of standing in line at the local market store.

 

Consider showing them how to grocery shop online so they feel more independent, or if they are not comfortable with this, place the order yourself and simply request that it be delivered to their door.

 

  1. Prepare their home

 

To properly prepare a home for aging parents,we recommend you recognize when and where common needs or hazards may arise. These include key areas like the kitchen, bedroom and bathroom. Some simple changes you can make are: Installing bathroom rails which will help them walk through the house and avoid unexpected slips and falls, lowering shelves in the pantry so they can easily access items, adding more lighting and removing floor hazards.

  1. Ensuring Health Care Measures

 

Stay in touch with the doctor, pharmacist and/or nurse of an elderly loved one. You can provide an extra hand in encouraging them to be proactive in the maintenance of their health. It is very important for you to understand their medical needs, including how frequently doctors’ appointments should occur. Mobile health tools that remind patients to take their medicine can be used or  calendar apps to track and anticipate upcoming doctors’ appointments are very helpful.

 

             4. Addressing emotional needs

 

Meaningful emotional contact is important for an aging parent — even simple gestures, like having others listen and share words of encouragement can positively influence their morale. With the vast popularity of elderly mobile smartphone owners, almost seven out of ten seniors own a mobile. Use video chat to make visual communication possible if you live or travel outside the region. Even if an initial training session is required, using this technology to see each other’s faces will be worth the effort.

 

The Takeaway

Today’s healthy seniors have new resources to make life easier as they continue enjoying the freedom of living independently. With today’s technological innovations to the way we communicate with each other, not only can the elderly can have the confidence they need to live independently, but their caregivers can too.

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