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To experience a perfect camping trip with your family, it is rather essential to have a family camping tent. It not only gives all of you a place to sleep at night, protects you from the insects attachment, but also keeps your gear safe and not wet if it rains. Therefore, alongside choosing the best family camping tent, you also need to know how to maintain it. This article will give you some tips:


Tip #1: While preparing for a camping trip.

Preparation is an important step of the camping trip. While considering what you should carry on, do not forget to bring a mini tent maintenance kit in case all of a sudden, some matters may arise with your camping tent. It can sound complicated, but making plans to prevent all the unfortunate cases that may happen during the camping holiday is not unnecessary.

Tip #2: Before setting up the camping tent:

An ideal place to raise a tent must have a flat surface where there is not any sharp rock. Also, you should choose a place which has the shade of the trees so that your tent can be protected from the direct sunlight. If you do not find the shade, you can use a rainfly to cover the tent.

tent2Do you know the most important parts of a family camping tent? They are zippers, flies, poles and seams. So you need to put these parts in the safest place to avoid stepping on them accidentally while engrossing in setting up the tent or in case the wind may blow them into the sharp objects such as rocks, tree branches, so forth and so on.

Tip #3: How to clean:

Never ignore this step as it plays a rather important role in keeping the tent more durable. When doing the washing-up of your tent, absolutely avoid using these things:

  • Hot water: especially if your family camping tent is made from nylon. Hot water will deform and ruin it immediately.
  • Household cleaners: For example: the dishwashing liquid, spot removers… because their scent can attract insects and mice that can make your tent damage.
  • Abrasive sponges: these objects can corrode the tent material. You’d better use the kind of non-abrasive sponges to clean.

Tents cleaning

Tip #4: How to store:

Always making sure that your camping tent is clean and dry when you store a tent deftly lest the mildew will attach it. Remember that the tent is only air dry. Do not ignore even just a small wet area on the tent. Store it in a dry place which is out of the direct sunshine in addition to always avoiding the humid or high moisture storage.

Another thing, do not forget to zip all the zippers while packing or unpacking to prevent them against the sands and dirty that can be stuck in. Like many other appliances, your camping tent also needs to be cared to maintain its durability for as much long time as possible.

Get your heart going: now is a great time to get cardiovascular exercise

During February, you might see a lot of hearts around. People share paper hearts and candy hearts for Valentine’s Day. But did you know that every year, Congress and the president declare February American Heart Month? American Heart Month is a perfect time to try heart-healthy activities, says Janet Peterson, associate professor and director of the exercise physiology laboratory at Linfield College in Oregon. One of the best ways to care for this very important organ is by getting cardiovascular exercise. Including cardiovascular exercise in your daily routine-try for at least 60 minutes a day-is easy, fun, and healthy.

Your Heart Loves Exercise

cardio-exerciseJump Rope For Heart is a program that benefits the American Heart Association and the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. Students sign up to jump rope for a set amount of time and ask friends and family to be sponsors. Jumping rope is a great workout! And lest you think it’s a little-kid activity, check out boxing movies such as Rocky or Million Dollar Baby-the pros know jumping rope can get them into shape.

Some schools are taking note. There have been clubs, teams, and competitions for jumping rope and its two-roped sister sport, double Dutch, for years. But starting this spring, schools in New York City are planning to offer double Dutch as a varsity sport in high schools.

Skipping rope not your thing? That’s OK. There are a lot of ways to get your heart pumping year-round. Running, jumping, biking, swimming, playing, climbing-all those “active” words are also great ways to get active!

Try These

Have a Ball

basketballHoops For Heart (HFH) encourages young people to play-what else?-basketball. Like Jump Rope For Heart, HFH benefits the American Heart Association and the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. Lake Cormorant Middle School in Mississippi is one of many schools that hold HFH activities. During its HFH week, students also play other heart-pumping games, such as flag football, soccer, and baseball, says teacher Brandon Childers. What do those games have in common? Yes, you use a ball to play them-but when you play them actively, they are all great cardiovascular exercise!

Take a Ride Inside

spinningNot all bikes are created equal. Some have only one wheel! That’s because indoor cycles aren’t meant to move-but they do get your blood moving. This type of exercise, called spinning, is showing up in some schools. At Indian Trail Junior High School in Illinois, for instance, students ride bikes to become “cardio warriors,” according to teacher Jeff Ryburn. Some kids like spinning so much, he says, they even stay after school to ride the bikes. You don’t need a special cycle to get the same results, though. Regularbikes can be fitted with a device to keep them from moving. But good old outdoor bike riding is equally healthy. Just be sure to wear a helmet!

Health care down the hallyway: school health experts handle everything from boo-boos to ahchoos

Remember when you were a little kid and scraped your elbow on the school playground? or when you had an upset stomach in the middle of show-and-tell? In both cases, you probably were sent to the nurse’s office. With a soothing voice, he or she patched you up as good as new or called your parents to take you home.

school-nursers-officeYou’re older now, but that doesn’t mean you’ve outgrown the need for health care. Instead of first aid for a skinned knee, maybe you need help taking care of your diabetes or someone to talk to about sad feelings. Your school may have just the person to help.

School Nurses

Most public and private schools depend on nurses to help keep students healthy. Nurses can give medication for sudden illnesses and for long-term conditions, such as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. They can administer shots, screen students for eye and ear problems, give advice about good nutrition, and perform first aid. They can refer students to doctors when necessary (such as for an infection or a case of hives). And in emergencies, school nurses can keep sick or injured students safe until help arrives.

“Students visit me for all sorts of reasons,” notes Claire Welch, a high school nurse in Sabattus, Maine. They could come to have a bruise treated or a cut bandaged, or they may need help for headaches or ankle sprains. Other visits may be for help with everything from strep throat to mental health issues. But nurses can do more than just treat illnesses or injuries students already have. “School nurses will talk to students honestly and without judgment, promoting health habits that can last a lifetime,” says Martha Garriott, a high school nurse in Norman, Okla.

schoolnurseNot all schools have full-time nurses, though. Some actually share nurses with nearby schools. About one in four U.S. schools do not have their own nurses, according to the National Association of School Nurses. Most times, that means a health aide takes care of minor bumps and bruises when the nurse isn’t around and calls the nurse if a more serious problem occurs. As a result, some communities are testing new, high-tech ways to beam care right into schools.

School-Based Health Centers

Another option some students have is a school-based health center (SBHC). The roughly 1,850 SBHCs throughout the country are staffed by nurses, doctors, and other health providers, often in partnership with local health officials or hospitals. They offer fixes for physical problems, such as sniffles and sprains, and may conduct physicals for school sports. Many SBHCs also connect students with help for emotional issues and substance-abuse problems. Some even bring in nutritionists and dentists.

Jan Thede is a nurse in a Grand Island, Neb., school that also houses an SBHC. She describes their partnership as helpful for students. “This is a tremendous resource,” Thede comments, “offering a higher level of intervention than the school nurse is licensed to provide.”

nurse-school-programStudies show that SBHCs help both reduce school absences and keep students from having to go to hospitals. “There’s a tremendous need” for the services those programs provide, says Gabriela Marquez, a mental health provider at an SBHC at Walton Educational Campus in New York City. The SBHC Marquez works for is run by the Montefiore Health System. To handle every facet of a student’s health-care needs, it includes a doctor, a nurse practitioner, a nurse, and social workers. “It’s incredible, the care we provide here,” Marquez remarks.

Many of the students she serves are like 19-year-old Ivette. * A few years ago, she visited the SBHC for some reproductive health issues; in the process, staff learned of Ivette’s depression and other mental health problems and helped her deal with them. “With therapy … my selfesteem became higher and solid,” she says. “Finding someone who sits with you, and does it in a caring way, can change your life.”

Hidden Assets

School health professionals can readily tend to a nasty gash, a chronic condition, or an emotional crisis. But their benefits don’t end there.

Susan Kirkpatrick, a school nurse with South Eastern Middle School, checks out Rowan Denny, Age 10, after he came to the nurses office not feeling well Tuesday September 11, 2012. YORK DAILY RECORD/SUNDAY NEWS - PAUL KUEHNEL

IN-AND-0UT SERVICE. Whether you need a vaccination or nutrition advice, having health care a few doors down from your history class means you don’t have to miss school for a doctor’s appointment. Students can get back to class within minutes, and parents don’t have to take time off work for a doctor’s visit. When only about 38 percent of preteens and teens get preventive checkups, school nurses and SBHCs provide much-needed access to care. In fact, a British study found that 61 percent of teens who visited a reproductive health clinic in their schools wouldn’t have sought care elsewhere.

A FAMILIAR FACE. Maybe you don’t have a regular doctor, or you rarely see him or her. But the health team at your school, whether it’s one nurse or a whole crew in an SBHC, is there day after day, caring for students like you. Teens may find it easier to open up and share their feelings and problems with people who are always looking out for them. That was the case for Ivette: “If the clinic was not at the school, I would not have gone to the doctor for my infections, much less for mental health.”

FREE OR LOW-COST CARE. For some families, especially those who don’t have health insurance, money can be a real barrier to getting care. That’s not an issue with health care in schools, though. School nurses don’t charge students, because the school pays for their services. And SBHCs will work with families’ insurance plans, but they don’t turn away students who can’t pay.

SECRETS ARE SAFE. School health personnel keep your concerns confidential–in general, they don’t tell your parents or teachers what you talk about or that you visited them at all. Many students come in “because they want to share a health concern they have been worried about but were afraid to ask a parent,” says nurse Sandi Delack, health services coordinator for the Johnston, R.I., public schools. There are exceptions, of course. If something you reveal suggests that you or other people are in danger of serious harm, nurses and SBHC staff are required to speak up. But in most cases, whatever you say in that office stays in that office.

How to choose a suitable essential oil diffuser?

Nobody can deny the usefulness of the essential oil. It not only creates an elegant and relaxing fragrance, but also takes care of your health depending on each particular kind of oil. Alongside the method of absorbing the oil directly on the skin or soaking in the tub with the mixture of warm water and the oil, you can use a diffuser.

This tool helps to break down the essential oil into thousands of tiny molecules floating in the air and quickly spread into entire of the space. If you are getting confused in choosing which one is the best essential oil diffuser, this article is here to solve that problem for you.

best-essential-oil-diffusersOn the market of essential oil diffusers, there are usually four kinds, including:

  • The ultrasonic diffuser
  • The evaporative diffuser
  • The nebulizing diffuser
  • The heat diffuser

Before buying a diffuser, you have to get enough information about each kind as well as how it runs to make the right decision.

1. The ultrasonic diffuser:

ultrasonic diffuserThis tool runs by mixing a determining amount of water with some small drops of the essential oil to create a soft mist with thousands of small particles.

It is very suitable to use in the winter because the diffuser can provide the high moisture to prevent the dry skin and bring into play the whole effect of the essential oil. Also, it helps you to save much money as it does not use the 100% of the pure oil like the others.

However, never use the citrus essential oil on this tool deftly lest the ingredients of it will erode some parts of the diffuser.

2. The evaporative diffuser:

This one is not only the cheapest, but also the simplest to use on the market by dropping the essential oil onto the filter put in front of a fan or sometimes absorbing directly on the porous surface. However, it is not used popularly because it runs not very effectively.

3. The nebulizing diffuser:

nebulizing diffuserA contrast to the evaporative diffuser, the nebulizing one is the most effective, but also the most expensive. It is a powerful machine that uses 100% the pure essential oil to diffuse into the air. Besides, it can create the smallest oil molecules which can easily absorb through the skin to bring into play the entire magical effects of the essential oil.

The reason why this tool is the most expensive diffuser is because of not only its effect, but also its using straight oil which results in the non-economy.

4. The heat diffuser:

This machine uses the heat of the fire or the electricity to warm the essential oil, helps it to spread more effectively to the air. However, if unfortunately there is too much heat, the chemical components of the oil will be damaged. That may make the oil aromatherapy become useless. In practical life, this kind of diffuser is usually used in the car because it only works well on the small area.

Easy Ways to Eat Better


Eating healthy will help you prevent many health problems such as stroke, diabetes or heart disease. In addition, you can not only reduce the risk of taking cancer but maintain a perfect weight as well. In this article, we will explain various aspects which are important for a healthy diet. You can read these principles below as a piece of advice for your healthy eating.

Indeed, people often look for other ingredients to replace for the food on their diet plan and this is one of the most challenging works. Here are some small tips for you:

• Use mustard instead of mayo to reduce the amount of fat and calories – When using mustard, you will have various flavors to choose with fewer calories and fat. However, people who don’t like mustard either can make Mayo in different style. In fact, Mayo is made of egg and oil so you should need to replace it with another type of oil.

• Sect whole wheat bread – Some people often buy the breads with white color when going to the supermarket. Try to read the label to make sure that you’re choosing bread which was made from high-quality grains.


• Eat the white meat of turkey or chicken. Actually, the white meat has a small amount of fat than red and dark meat. Animal fat is one of the ingredients which is not good for your health. Remember that if you want to cook meat, pick up the chicken breast or pork tenderloin so that you don’t have to reduce the amount of fat in every meal.

• Eat fish fillets. These fillets provide not only higher-fat proteins but also the large amount of omega-3 which is good for both your eyes and health. And we also want you to know that it takes just a short period of time to cook the seafood rather than the beef or chicken!

• Sometimes you should change the style of cooking. You can try baking, grilling or broiling instead of frying all the time. Researches have shown that fried food is bad for your health. To illustrate, it can affect badly to your brain and body in various ways. On the other hand, people who get obesity are often because they eat too much fried food and carbohydrates.


• Reduce the amount of food. Some people will take too much food in front of them in every meal. Therefore, why don’t put your meals on a smaller plate for one time. If you want to know how to eat joyfully and mindfully, just get only half the amount that your eyes tell you to eat. In addition, you should chew the food carefully in order to get more nutrition and eat less.

• Drink more water. You should replace soda with herbal tea or fresh water. One person ought to drink 8 cups of water a day. On the other hand, drinking water helps you lose weight effectively. To illustrate, sometimes you think you are hungry, actually you are thirsty. For people who want to lose weight, drink a lot of water will serve as an appetite suppressant.

• Eating your snack with fruit and nuts instead of candy or cookie. Also, some vegetables such as fiber, bananas or fruit juice will help you sustain the next meal so don’t worry!

Having a healthy eating plan is good. However, you should maintain a healthy lifestyle by doing exercises as well. Some people choose to play outdoor sports, others prefer working-out with their machines at home. Fortunately, when wandering at a fitness machine store, you will definitely find the perfect machine which meets your need. Therefore, to help you pick up the some indoor machines, we recommend some best spin bikes for home use here

Eating healthy doesn’t mean that you eat less amount of food. Actually, you don’t have to cut out your favorite foods, just replace it with other ingredients. Therefore, when eating nutritious food, you are maintaining a healthy lifestyle which help you reach the perfect weight.

The beat goes on … long live the healthy heart!

It flutters when you’re flustered, races when you run, and skips a beat when something startles you. Poets say it’s where love lives. Scientists know it’s the pump that keeps your body’s transportation system moving. It’s your heart: a pear-shaped muscular structure about the size of your fist.

It pumps 2,000 gallons of blood each day, and beats about 2.5 billion times in a lifetime. As the heart contracts and relaxes, blood pulses to the far reaches of the body and back again through 12,400 miles of blood vessels, replenishing the body’s supply of oxygen and nutrients and removing waste.

The heart starts beating before birth and continues until death, leading many experts to say it never rests. But others interpret the heart’s fine-tuned pace as a short period of work followed by a short period of rest. If you count the fraction of a second between heartbeats, you could say the heart rests about 57 percent of the time.

How the Heart Works

The heart is actually two separate pumps. One pumps oxygen-depleted blood from the body to the lungs. The other pumps oxygen-rich blood from the lungs to the body. The pumping action is your heartbeat.

A heartbeat is a combination of muscle relaxation and contraction. When the heart muscle relaxes, one set of valves opens, letting blood flow into the pumping chambers (ventricles) of the heart. Blood that is returning from its trip around the body enters the right atrium on the heart’s upper side, as blood that was in the right atrium drains into the right ventricle below. At approximately the same time, on the left side of the heart, oxygen-rich blood from the lungs enters the left atrium, and blood that was held there goes to the left ventricle.

When the heart contracts, or flexes its muscle, the first set of valves closes and blood from the heart’s pumping chambers is sent on its way through another set of valves. Blood that entered the right ventricle when the heart relaxed is pushed through the pulmonary artery to the lungs. Blood from the left ventricle goes through the aorta to the rest of the body.

Setting the Pace

Electrical impulses regulate the split-second timing of the heart’s rhythm. Clusters of specialized heart cells generate electrical signals that tell the heart when to contract. One of these specialized cell clusters, called the sinoatrial (SA) node, is the heart’s natural pacemaker. Located near the top of the wall of the right atrium, the SA node sets the heartbeat in motion.

First the heart’s upper chambers contract. As they do, the electrical current passes down a path of nerves through another group of cells called the atrioventricular (AV) node through a special conduction system into the ventricles. Then the heart’s lower chambers (ventricles) contract. The ripple effect completes the heartbeat in less than one second.

The SA node acts like a spark plug, igniting the first shot of current to the heart. It is the most important group of cells capable of initiating the heartbeat, but the heart also has a built-in emergency generator system. It works like the army’s chain of command. If the SA node stops working, the AV node starts the beat. If the AV node fails, too, two other specialized cell clusters (conduction pathways in the ventricles) can take over. If neither of them works, a random group of cells in the ventricle wall energize the heart. The heart rate in a case like this is too slow, but it could work long enough for emergency medical personnel to provide an artificial pacemaker.

Supplying the Heart

All the body’s cells, including those in the heart itself, need oxygen and nutrients from circulating blood. Blood carries supplies for the heart through the coronary arteries, which flow from four main branches into increasingly smaller channels that serve every part of the heart muscle.

If one of the main coronary arteries becomes blocked–either from a blood clot or a build-up of a fatty material, an atherosclerotic plaque, the heart muscle supplied by the blocked vessel is injured. Tissue beyond the blockage dies. This heart muscle death, called myocardial infarction, is more commonly known as a heart attack. Tissue death causes progressive loss of heart function as well as the pain associated with heart attack. The American Heart Association estimates that as many as 1.5 million Americans will have had a heart attack during 1989, and that more than 500,000 of them will be fatal.

Some people avoid heart attacks because their heart’s circulatory system develops extra blood vessels and interconnections with the larger coronary arteries. If a blockage occurs, blood detours around the clog through these “collateral” vessels and continues to supply the heart’s cells with oxygen. Although everyone has these small collateral vessels, they usually remain closed. People lucky enough to develop collateral circulation have extra protection from tissue death. One of the benefits of regular aerobic exercise is that it encourages the development of collateral circulation.

Congenital Problems

Every year in the United States, about 25,000 babies are born with heart defects caused by abnormalities in the way the heart or blood vessels near the heart develop before birth. Surgery and medicine can help most of them, but an estimated 6,000 children die from the ailments.

Causes of congenital heart defects remain largely unknown. Sometimes a viral infection such as German measles, or rubella, is to blame. In other cases, defective genes may be responsible. A mother’s excessive consumption of alcohol or other chemicals during pregnancy is also often associated with these problems.

Keeping the Heart Healthy


When you realize the heart’s importance, it’s easy to understand why so much attention is paid to keeping the heart healthy. Heart disease is America’s number one killer. But research, public education such as training in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), and community service programs sponsored by the American Heart Association and others have reduced the coronary heart disease death rate by 27.9 percent between 1976 and 1986.

Potential victims of heart disease can be identified through a number of well-publicized risk factors. Race, gender, and heredity play important roles. Black Americans have more heart disease than whites, and men have twice as many heart attacks as women. Men whose fathers died from heart attack before the age of 50 have an increased likelihood of having one themselves. And hypercholesterolemia, a condition associated with high blood cholesterol levels, also runs in families.

Lifestyle, too, contributes to heart disease. Smoking, high blood pressure, and a diet high in saturated fat and cholesterol increase the possibility of heart attack. So can obesity and lack of exercise. Diabetes is often associated with high blood cholesterol, so it is another factor.

Although hereditary risk factors cannot be changed, lifestyle risks can. Three important ways you can keep your heart healthy are regular aerobic exercise, avoidance of smoking, and a heart-healthy diet.

The American Heart Association recommends a diet high in fiber and low in salt and saturated fat. At least half of your daily calories should come from carbohydrates. Choose complex carbohydrates such as fruits, vegetables, and grains (which are high in fiber) instead of high-sugar, simple carbohydrates. Protein should make up another 15 percent to 20 percent of your daily food intake, while fats are limited to 30 percent or less of the day’s calories.

Pay special attention to the kind of fat you eat. Limit the amount of saturated fats, the type found in foods of animal origin such as meat and dairy products, to 10 percent of your diet. Watch your salt, too. Sodium can contribute to high blood pressure, so watch your daily salt consumption.

If you keep your heart healthy by minimizing your risk factors, eating wisely, and exercising regularly, your heart will serve you well, regulating your body’s delivery system for a lifetime. What better year-round, life-long valentine could you get?

10 health habits every kid needs to learn

When children follow a few health rules, they will have fewer sick days and healthier adult lives. These routine activities include, cover when sneezing, wash hands often, drink lots of water and eat green vegetables. Breakfast sunscreen use, exercise, and good teeth care, are other musts.


There’s probably not a mother alive who hasn’t allowed her child to go to bed without brushing his teeth. Or ride his bike without a helmet. Or — dare we admit it? — eat cookies for breakfast. They may seem innocent enough issues on occasion, but cutting corners regularly can set kids up for problems later. Good health habits “are critically important to establish what kind of direction children are going to take down the road,” observes Stephen Bolduc, M.D., a Newport News, Virginia, pediatrician. That’s why President Clinton and the American Health Foundation have designated October 6 as National Child Health Day. Here are the most essential routines — and the best ways to teach them.

1. Cover up when coughing or sneezing. Cold virus particles can be expelled from the mouth at more than 100 miles an hour and can remain aloft for hours more, so it’s no wonder that classrooms and day care centers are plagued with runny noses and — their all too frequent offshoot — ear infections. Teach your kids to always cover their mouths when coughing or sneezing, even if they aren’t yet sick. “A lot of infectious diseases are most contagious before you experience noticeable symptoms,” explains Linda Anz, M.D., an Auburn, Alabama, Pediatrician.

2. Wash your hands often, especially before eating, and after coughing, using the toilet, or playing with pets. Many microorganisms found in the environment and in our own bodies can, if they get on our hands and then into our mouths, make us sick. For example, in a recent outbreak of E. Coli poisoning in Japan, a surprising number of the cases appear to have been caused by hand-to-mouth contact between infected individuals, not by eating contaminated food.

For prevention, Gail Cassell, Ph.D., chair of the microbiology department at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, recommends teaching children to wash their hands regularly with antibacterial soap. Some teachers advocate using the crook of the arm during coughs and sneezes to avoid contaminating hands.

3. Guzzle the [H.sub.2]O. “If a child skips one meal, it’s not good, but he isn’t going to get really sick. If he gets less than half of the fluid intake he should have for that day, however, he’ll start experiencing symptoms of dehydration,” says Sheah Rarback, director of nutrition at the Mailman Center for Child Development, University of Miami School of Medicine. It will start with a headache and could progress to more serious problems such as disorientation or, in warm weather, heat stroke.

Unfortunately, when kids want a drink, we too often give them juices, soft drinks, or sugary beverages instead of what their bodies really need — simple water. Felicia Busch, a registered dietitian in St. Paul, recommends that children drink 48 to 64 ounces of fluid a day, primarily water and milk. Cool-looking sport bottles A la Michael Jordan can pump up their motivation, too.

4. Go for the greens … and oranges and yellows. Okay, so you really are turning into your mother. She knew fruits and vegetables are chock-full of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, which promotes healthy bowel functioning. But researchers today have also established a connection between the phytochemicals in fruits and vegetables and cancer prevention. Plus, a low-fat diet — which is what kids will have if they opt for apples and oranges over cheese puffs — can stave off obesity and heart disease, among other illnesses.


If your child hates vegetables, entice her with healthy dips. “It’s not that kids like the dip as much as it is the act of dipping,” points out Janet Kurzynske, Ph.D., associate professor of nutrition at the University of Kentucky. If she still refuses anything green, let her fill up on a variety of fruits. Just don’t make the mistake of substituting juice for the real thing; the juice packs more calories and sugar into fewer nutrients and less fiber.

5. Eat those Wheaties — or at least a muffin. “Breakfast is what refuels the body for the entire day. Without it, kids do poorly in school, they lack energy to play, and they are cranky and fatigued,” says Busch. She also points out that breakfast skippers tend to binge later on in the day because they get so hungry, setting themselves up for obesity — now and in adulthood.

What if your kids will eat only sugar-laden cereal — is any breakfast better than no breakfast? There is an argument for that, admits Dr. Kurzynske. “It’s good to get something in them so that they have glucose to operate on immediately in the morning.” But you have a larger variety of foods to offer your kids than you might think. “Breakfast can be a peanut butter or grilled cheese sandwich, even pizza,” says Dr. Kurzynske.

6. Pump them up. If you’ve got an active preschooler, exercise may be about the easiest habit to get her into — just try swinging across those monkey bars yourself. “You don’t need to make exercise an artificial obligation, as in `Okay, now we are going to put on our special gear and do this thing called exercise!'” says Lyle J. Micheli, M.D., director of the sports medicine division of Boston Children’s Hospital. Instead, make it a natural part of your family life. Go for walks after dinner, kick around a soccer ball in the yard, invest in in-line skates. Perhaps most important, break that automatic driving response,” says Dr. Micheli: Don’t get in the car when you can walk.

7. Declare war on ticks. Lyme disease, an infectious illness spread by ticks, can cause nerve palsy and meningitis if left untreated, according to David Dennis, M.D., an epidemiologist with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Although outbreaks of the disease are concentrated in the northeast, north central, and Pacific coastal states, cases have been reported by 48 states and Washington, D.C. And the CDC expects that the incidence will increase and continue to spread geographically.

Although it would be inhuman to ask your children to wear long sleeves and pants during the summer, make sure that they cover up as much as possible when going into the woods or tall grass — tuck pants into socks, for example. Also, encourage them to check themselves for ticks nightly. (You’ll have no problem motivating them on this one. Most kids are thrilled to get naked and look themselves over.) If they (or you) find a tick, grasp it with tweezers as close to the skin as possible, then pull it straight out. Early discovery is critical in warding off infection: The tick must be attached for 36 hours to transmit the disease.

8. Slather on the sunscreen. One third of all cancers in the United States are skin cancers, almost all of which are caused by overexposure to the sun, notes Darrell Rigel, M.D., clinical professor of dermatology at New York University Medical Center. “The rate of melanoma, the most dangerous kind of skin cancer, is increasing faster than any other cancer in the world,” he warns. Nearly 80 percent of all sun damage occurs before the age of 20, and 70 percent of sun exposure acquired over a lifetime takes place during typical outdoor activities, not sunbathing.

sunscreen The bottom line: Kids should apply sunscreen every time they go outside. If they whine at full-body coating, let them just slap some on the critical spots — face, neck, ears, legs, arms. And you needn’t buy pricey kids’ sunscreen; any good lotion with an SPF of 15 or higher will do the trick (just do a patch test first to make sure the formula doesn’t irritate your child’s skin).

9. Wear proper safety equipment. According to the National Safe Kids Campaign, bicycle helmets reduce the risk of head injury by as much as 85 percent, and the risk of brain injury by as much as 88 percent. If every child in the U.S. wore a helmet when he rode, between 135 and 155 deaths would be prevented, along with 39,000 to 45,000 head injuries and 18,000 to 55,000 scalp and facial injuries annually. And that’s just the helmets. Think what could be prevented if every child wore properly fitting safety equipment for every sport — elbow and knee pads, shin and mouth guards, cups for boys, to name a few. To find out what is appropriate for your child’s activities, ask your school district’s athletic director or call the National Youth Sports Safety Foundation (617-277-1171).

Of course, most little kids will comply because they love hats of any type, but around age 8, many start to balk at helmets. Let your child maintain his “cool” status by picking out a new “awesome” one with flames and obnoxious sayings (you can always pretend he belongs to someone else). And take every opportunity to point out admired professional athletes or older kids who wear the appropriate equipment.

10. Brush those pearly whites twice a day, after breakfast and at bedtime. “Parents should start brushing their children’s teeth as soon as the first one appears,” advises Heber Simmons Jr., D.D.S., a Jackson, Mississippi, pediatric dentist and past president of the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry. Use a brush with soft, rounded bristles and a small amount of toothpaste, since kids-toddlers especially-mostly tend to swallow it. Aim to brush for two minutes. Some electric toothbrushes have a built-in timer, or try an egg timer to turn brushing into a game.

The way to eat: I want (healthy) candy! … grapeseed and flaxseed oils vs. cholesterol … exercise after an injury.

Q. If I were to allow myself a treat every afternoon around 4 P.M. from the candy counter downstairs, what’s the best pick nutritionally? Sometimes a piece of fruit and a handful of nuts just don’t cut it.


This question is easy to answer (I’d even say “piece of cake,” but that might confuse the issue): dark chocolate. It’s rich in magnesium–a nutrient often in short supply in people’s diets and one associated with lowering blood pressure, helping control PMS, and possibly fighting asthma–and a good source of fiber and antioxidants. In fact, cocoa has more antioxidant power than green tea. Look for dark chocolate made with at least 60 percent cocoa, such as Ghirardelli. Plus, while all chocolate is high in saturated fat, stearic acid–the main source of saturated fat in cocoa–doesn’t raise cholesterol the way most milk fat does.

If you’re up for a noncandy indulgence, however, and have the foresight to shop online or at a health food store, consider LaraBars ( Like candy, these delicious snack bars will satisfy your sweet tooth, but since they’re made of only fruits, nuts, and spices, they’re wholesome and rich in nutrients. Just be sure to watch your portion size: One ounce of dark chocolate contains about 150 calories, and a 1.7-ounce LaraBar around 200.

Q. A year ago, I was worried about prediabetes and my cholesterol levels were near out-of-bounds. I’m now exercising, have increased the amount of fruit I eat, and have added flaxseed and grapeseed oils to my daily smoothie. Can those oils really help my heart and blood sugar levels?

–DAVID B. JACKSON, Chapel Hill, North Carolina


Maybe. The two oils are certainly beneficial for the heart: Flaxseed is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, which help lower inflammation (a major contributor to heart disease) and possibly cholesterol; grapeseed is rich in polyunsaturated fats, which may also help reduce cholesterol. While adding them to your smoothies is one step toward your goals, you’ll derive the largest benefit from these and other healthful oils–canola, walnut, olive, and safflower–by substituting them for the more harmful alternatives: butter, cream, animal fat, and partially hydrogenated oils.

You should also be making other dietary changes to get your cholesterol and blood sugar under control. Replace saturated and trans fats in your diet with monounsaturated fats (olives, avocados, nuts, and seeds) and polyunsaturated fats (vegetable oils, seafood). Increase the amount of soluble fiber you eat, in the form of oat-based breads and cereals, beans, lentils, apples, and berries. And for even greater benefits, you are absolutely right to focus on more physical activity. Bottom line: If you want to include the oils in your smoothies, go for it–just remember that you’re also adding calories, so you’ll have to subtract them from somewhere else to manage your weight.

Q I’ve been struggling to lose weight ever since a severe car accident ten years ago fractured my pelvis and made it difficult for me to walk. If I can’t exercise hard enough to get my heart rate up, how can I drop the pounds?

–SHEROMA FUNKE, Lake Zurich, Illinois

Working up a sweat may not be as difficult as you think: I can squeeze in exercise just sitting on a plane. I do this through isometrics, tensing muscles against an object or even another body part. Put both hands in front of you at chest level and press them together to strengthen your arms and upper torso, or push your feet against the floor to exercise the large muscles in your thighs–work through the major muscle groups, holding each position for a count of 20. (Check out The Complete Book of isometrics, by Erin O’Driscoll, for an introduction.)

Another tactic is to focus on the parts of your body that are healthy. Since it sounds as if you may have limited use of your legs, ask a local trainer or physical therapist about machines for your upper body–a “hand peddle” is like a stationary bike for your arms and shifts the aerobic benefits of cycling upward. For those with arm injuries, use your legs: Riding a stationary bike works your lower body and, unlike running, doesn’t involve your arms or shoulders. If your back hurts, try swimming, floor exercises or other non-weight-bearing forms of aerobic activity. There’s even evidence that people who fidget tend to be thinner than those who don’t, so stay active–stand up, walk, and move at every opportunity.

If your injuries rule out almost all exercise, the best thing to do for weight loss is to concentrate on your diet. Weight control is about calories in versus calories out, and reducing the amount you eat to less than what your body needs to maintain your current weight will help you drop pounds. Granted, that’s difficult even for those of us who can exercise. It won’t be easy, but you can make it happen.

Setting goals for your fitness process

Fitness is like all hobbies in your daily life. If you don’t have a clear goal for doing exercises, you will find it difficult to maintain for a long time. Although at the beginning your workout process is full of energy; however, you will start to be lazy for the time being. Therefore, if you have goals and know exactly what you want to get, then you will have more motivation for this type of practice.


It will not good if you don’t have a clear goal to achieve for yourself.

 In fact, there are a lot of studies which showed that this idea is very precise. Having some dynamic goals is the important feature that determine whether or not you will successfully stick to your workout process. However, your goals must be reasonable and suitable for yourself. So what does that mean? And how can you set these appropriate goals?


There are researches of American Council on Exercise (ACE) show that one of the easiest ways to remember your goals is setting the acronym for them. For instant, we suggest the acronym S.M.A.R.T. This type of model will emphasize the specific principles which help remembering useful goals.

  • SPECIFIC – You should know exactly what you hope to get after doing exercises for a long period of time. For example, by saying “I workout to lose weight”, it’s not enough. Therefore, decide that you hope to lose 6 pounds additionally.
  • Measurable – your goals need to be not only specific but measurable as well. This helps you follow the progress for the whole process. For example, if you work out to lose weight, note down your weight every time you step on the scale. Having a simple report to look back on what you have achieved, this will give encouragements for keep going.


  • Attainable – you also need to consider whether you can achieve the goals or not. In addition, goals should be hard and challenging; however, goals which are too hard will make you discouraged. So before setting the goals, remember to ask yourself honestly “Can I actually achieve this goal?”
  • Relevant – Put the goals relate to the circumstances and also the type of sport. This will help improving the process rather than making a distraction for you.
  • Time – you must create a specific deadline for your goals. People who don’t have the time bound often procrastinate. Therefore, setting a period of time helps you not only work hard to achieve the goals but also make the best use of the time.

There are also something else to consider and it doesn’t stay in this acronym. That is you must prepare yourself to improve the process of working out. To illustrate, you set a goal to practice and win a marathon. If you have never done this type of practice before, you will hardly achieve this goal in the future. Therefore, you should prepare yourself carefully before making any goal.


Many people find it beneficial to create a balanced list of costs and rewards for their exercises process. On the other hand, why don’t think that you can reduce the cost by having the equipment at home for working-out? Preferred by clubs and gyms worldwide, Sole Fitness is famous for the versatility and quality of its product. To illustrate, Sole Fitness SB700 makes your workouts efficient and smooth, even for people have never used a machine at home. You can find more information about Sole Fitness SB700 Exercise Bike by taking a look at this website.

In conclusion, having clear goals is good for the work-out process. Tell your friends and family about the goals additionally. To illustrate, you are more likely to stick to the plan when there are people watching.

How to fit fitness into your life

We’ve hit month three of REDBOOK’S Real-Life, Healthy Life Makeover, and our participants–Jennifer, Julie, and Adrienne–are already reaping benefits from the small lifestyle changes they’ve made. This month. our fitness expert. Jillian Michaels of NBCs reality TV show The Biggest Loser. shows them–and you–how to squeeze doable exercise into any busy schedule. Michaels created two routines that are so easy and fun, you’ll truly fall in love with getting fit.

MICHAELS DROPPED BY ADRIENNE’S OHIO HOME FOR SOME ONE-ON-ONE TRAINING. But before they started sweating, Michaels, creator of the DVD collection The Biggest Winner!, showed Adrienne how to rearrange her schedule to make time for fitness–without disrupting her life.

Step 1: Prioritize.

Adrienne: “I have a gym membership, but I rarely use it. Taking care of my two kids leaves little time for exercise. Even when I do hop on our home treadmill, the kids inevitably need me.” Reality Check: “Like so many of us, Adrienne has the time to exercise, but she’s choosing to do other things,” says Michaels. “It’s admirable that Adrienne’s bowing to the needs of her kids, but she has to put herself first sometimes.” Every week, Adrienne should sit down with her schedule and jot down workout times in realistic slots. (See “How Adrienne Can Squeeze in Exercise,” right.) Planning ahead is the key to getting anything done.

Step 2: Make Your Exercise Plan Stick.

Adrienne: “During my best stretch of exercise, I went swimming a few times a week for a month. Then the YMCA pool closed for repairs–and I never returned.” Reality check: About 50 percent of people who start an exercise program quit within the first six months. So write down the reasons you want to get healthy, says Michaels. Maybe for you it’s to live longer or look great in clothes. On the days you don’t feel like exercising, read your list. Find a fitness buddy who will give you a mental kick in the rear when you need it–and vice versa. Finally, try a few different exercise routines to beat boredom, an exercise nemesis.

Step 3: Allow Yourself to Get Back on Track.

Adrienne: “Within a couple of weeks of walking or using workout videos, I lose the motivation to squeeze exercise into my day.” Reality check: When you veer off course, ask yourself what stopped you. Was it logistics? (You didn’t block out enough time to shower post-exercise before picking up the kids and the process became too stressful.) Was it physical? (Your knees hurt.) Whether it’s reexamining your schedule or getting better gear, figure out how to fix whatever turned you off. By taking action, you’ll also banish any self-hatred you might feel (Why can’t I get my act together?) about not following through on your goals.

How Adrienne Can SQUEEZE IN Exercise (and you can too!)

Typical Day

5:30-6:30 a.m.: Wake up, have tea. Husband Tim often goes to the gym.

* EXERCISE FIX: Adrienne and Tim should take turns going to the gym in the morning. Whoever stays home can use the treadmill.


6:30-8:45 a.m.: Make breakfast, get kids ready for school.

900-11:30 a.m.: Run errands, volunteer at schools.

* EXERCISE FIX: Since both kids are in school on Tuesday and Thursday mornings, Adrienne should use one of those mornings to head to the gym or back home to work out.

11:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m.: Have lunch with son, tackle household chores.

* EXERCISE FIX: Since Adrienne’s gym offers babysitting, she should schedule one of her workouts during this time.

4:00-5:00 p.m.: Help daughter with homework, play with kids.

* EXERCISE FIX: Once a week, she should have her kids play on their own as she exercises at home.

5:00-7:15 p.m.: Dinner and family time.

* EXERCISE FIX: After dinner, the family should take a walk.

7:15-830 p.m.: Get kids to bed.

8:30-10: p.m.: Read and watch TV with Tim.

* EXERCISE FIX: Do strength-training moves in front of the TV for 15 to 20 minutes.

* Adrienne found six time slots for exercise–so can you!

The Build-Strength, Lose-Fat Workout Choose the level that’s right for you and get going!


If you’re new to working out …

Jillian Michaels created this beginner strength-training routine for Adrienne and Jennifer, whose fitness history consists mostly of walking.

How to do it: After a five-minute warm-up (pedal on stationary bike, jog in place), do 10 to 15 reps of the four moves for the given day, unless otherwise noted, without pausing between moves. Repeat the circuit two more times. This should take about 15 minutes. Follow with 30 minutes of cardio (walk, bike, do a kickboxing video) and five minutes of stretching. On the fifth day, when you’re not strength training, do 45 minutes of cardio.

Total time: 55 minutes.


If you’re already a regular exerciser …

Michaels slightly increased the difficulty of the beginner workout for Julie, who knows her way around a gym, and for anyone else who’s ready to take toning and fat burning to the next level.


How to do it: As with the beginner workout, start with a warm-up, then do 10 to 15 reps of the four moves for the given day, unless otherwise noted, without pausing between moves. Repeat the circuit two more times, then follow with 30 minutes of cardio. Don’t forget to cool down for five minutes afterward. On the fifth day, when you’re not strength training, do 45 minutes of cardio.

Total time: 55 minutes.

* On Mondays and Thursdays, work the front of your body chest, shoulders, abs, and quadriceps).



Starting position: Stand with back against the wall, arms crossed in front of your chest.

Move: Slowly lower body down until thighs are parallel with floor, knees over ankles. Hold for 10 seconds. Return to start. Repeat twice for one set.



Starting position: Instead of being supported by a wall, stand with feet hip-width apart and abs tight.

Move: With back straight, slowly lower body until thighs are parallel with floor, knees over ankles. Return to start.



Starting position: Sit on the edge of a chair or bench, hands gripping the sides. Walk feet forward, so hips come off the chair and your weight is supported by arms. Knees should be over ankles.

Move: Keeping feet flat on the ground, bend elbows and lower hips until upper arms are parallel with floor. Pause; use arms to push up to start.


Starting position: Sit on the edge of a chair or bench, with legs straight out in front of you. Rest your weight on your heels, instead of feet being flat on the ground as in the beginner move.

Move: Balancing on heels, bend elbows and lower hips until upper arms are parallel with floor. Pause; use arms to push up to start.



Starting position: Stand with feet wider than shoulder-width apart, toes turned out.

Move: Abs tight, lower body down until thighs are parallel with floor. (Don’t extend knees past toes.) Pause; return to start.


Starting position: This is the same move as the beginner one, but with weights.

Move: Do the beginner move with arms straight down in front of you, hands holding either end of an eight-pound dumbbell.




Starting position: Place palms several inches wider than shoulder-width apart against a sturdy table, weight bench, or wall. Step back about two feet. Support weight on toes and palms of hands.

Move: Bending elbows, lower body toward the table, bench, or wall with neck straight, abs tight, gaze downward. Push back to start; repeat.


Move: This is the same move as in the beginner workout, but your goal is to do 15 to 20 reps.


On Wednesdays and Saturdays, work the back of your body (glutes, back, hamstrings, and calves).



Starting position: Take a giant step forward with your right foot, hands on hips.

Move: Lower body down until left knee is close to the ground and right thigh is almost parallel to ground. (Do not extend knees past toes.) Pause; return to start. Complete a full set with both legs.



Starting position: Stand with hands on hips, feet hip-width apart, abs tight.

Move: Leading with heel, take giant step forward with right leg; as foot lands, bend both knees until right thigh is parallel to the floor. Pause; return to start. Complete a full set with both legs.



Starting position: Stand with a five-pound dumbbell in each band. With abs tight, back flat, and knees slightly bent, tilt forward at waist until torso is almost parallel with floor. Arms should hang in front of you, palms facing thighs.

Move: Keeping arms close to body, slowly raise dumbbells to chest level. Pause, then return to start.


Move: This is the same move as the beginner one, but use eight-pound weights instead.



Starting position: Lie on stomach, with forehead on the floor, arms straight out in front of you.


Move: Lift arms and legs a couple of inches off the ground. Pause, then return to start.


Move: This is the same move as the beginner one, except you should aim for 15 to 20 reps instead of 10 to 15.




Starting position:

Lie on your back, knees bent, feet on the ground, arms at sides.

Move: Pressing heels down, lift hips off the ground as high as you can. Keep knees over ankles and squeeze butt. Return to start.



Starting position: Follow the directions for the beginner move.

Move: Pressing heels down, lift hips off the ground as much as you can, and extend right leg straight up. Lower leg and hips. Complete a full set with both legs.

If the days listed don’t work for you, switch them. Just allow two days of rest in between training the front or back of your body. For instance, if you do the front-of-body routine on Tuesday, don’t do it again until Friday.



Adrienne Schiffer, 33, stay-at-home mom, married with two kids ages 7 and 3, Powell, OH

“The first few times I did the beginner workout, I could only do a couple of bench dips. Less than two weeks later, I was able to do 10. I love the strength I’m building.”


HEIGHT, WEIGHT: 5’3″, 244 lbs 226 lbs
BODY FAT: 34% 30%
WAIST: 47″ 43″
HIPS: 57″ 54 1/22″
BUST: 47 1/4″ 44 3/4″

THE SMALL CHANGE THAT’S ALREADY PAID OFF FOR HER: I’ve stopped questioning whether I can do this program. Dr. Dan Baker [RLHL mind/body expert] asked me to dig into my past for an instance when I used persistence to achieve a goal. A lightbulb went off when I remembered studying to become an accountant. I realized, I’ve done this before, and I can do it again.”


THE HURDLE SHE STILL FACES: Moving past the number on the scale. “I weigh myself every day, and I get frustrated when the number doesn’t move or goes up.”

HOW TO JUMP OVER IT: Use other ways to track weight loss, says RLHL expert Michael F. Roizen, M.D., coauthor of You” The Owner’s Manual. When you first strength train, you retain water, which can appear as weight gain. Step on the scale once a week, and look for other clues: Do pants fit better? Are your rings loose?

* To see more recent pictures of Adrienne, Julie, and Jennifer, and to back their progress, go to


Julie Graves, 39, pharmaceutical sales rep, married with two children, ages 10 and 7, Indianapolis

“I felt invincible doing the lower-body moves, but the push-ups made my arms quiver. I thought, This means my muscles are working, and that kept me going.”

HEIGHT, WEIGHT: 5’4″, 178 lbs 175 lbs
BODY FAT: 34% 37% *
WAIST: 33″ 33 1/4″
HIPS: 44″ 42″
BUST: 38%” 38 1/2″

” Body fat can fluctuate, so measurements can vary

THE SMALL CHANGE THAT’S ALREADY PAID OFF HER: “I try to think about the positive consequences of working out.

For example, I used to tell myself that I exercise so that I won’t be fat. Now I go to the gym with the mind-set of, If I have a good workout, my arms are going to look great in sleeveless tops and I’m going to wake up feeling energetic.”

THE HURDLE SHE STILL FACES: Squashing her need to nibble. “I’m still having too many BLTs–what I call ‘bites, licks, and tastes.’ I’ll munch on food that my kids have left on their plates or from buffets I set up for clients.”

HOW TO JUMP OVER IT: First, Julie should make a rule to eat only when sitting down, says RLHL nutrition expert Lisa R. Young, R.D., author of The Portion Teller. Other tips: Before popping a “taste” in your mouth, count to five and ask yourself, “Am I hungry?” Chew gum when the temptation to graze is strongest.


Which Is for You: Home or Gym Workouts? Depending on your personality, gyms may motivate you or intimidate you; working out at home may feel convenient or boring. Here’s how to tell.

1. PiCk the personality that describes you best:

a. Frequently outgoing.

b. Social in familiar surroundings.

C. Usually shy.

2. Your exercise equipment at home moat closely resembles:


a. Sneakers and a few workout DVDs.

b. Items in “a,” plus a set of dumbbells and an exercise ball.

c. Some items in “a” and “b,” plus at least one cardio machine, such as a treadmill or an elliptical machine.

3. You’re offered a greet work-from-home Job, Would you be self-motivated enough to report to your desk every day?

a. It’s doubtful.

b. Some days yes, and other days no.

C. Definitely.

4, How far away is the gym you’d use?

a. Less than a 10-minute drive.

b. Ten to 20 minutes.

c. More than 20 minutes.

If you picked mostly a’s: Join a gym. Because you like action, you’ll probably get bored fast with solo home workouts. At a club, inspirational instructors and the social scene will get you psyched. And the variety of equipment and classes will keep you interested.

If you picked mostly b’s: You could go either way. You have the equipment to work out at home, but you may prefer the variety a gym offers. If you go the gym route, ask the manager if you can sign up for a low-investment trial membership (most offer these); if you find yourself slacking during the trial period, stay close to home!

If you picked mostly c’s: Do your leg lifts at home. You don’t need the gym atmosphere to get motivated, and you have what you need at home to get your heart pumping.

Rones, Nancy