Photo: ThinkstockBy Corrie Pikul
Oranges and papaya are high in vitamin B6 and folic acid, both of which have been found to be lacking in studies in patients who suffer from depression.
Added perk: Many people swear that these fruits, with their pleasantly tangy scent and cheery orange hues, help wake up the senses.
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The Thinking Woman's Pick-Me-Up
Fish oil is famously high in polyunsaturated fatty acids that are essential to brain function and cardiovascular health. While there is an established link between people with depression and low levels of these omega-3 fatty acids, scientists are still trying to definitively prove that the reverse is also true. Some encouraging studies found that omega-3s have boosted the mood-elevating power of prescription antidepressants; in another large study, omega-3 supplements improved the symptoms of those diagnosed with depression but who do not suffer from anxiety (although this research was funded by
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Photo: ThinkstockBy Corrie PikulRead More »from What to Eat when You're Feeling Blue
Photo: ThinkstockBy Jenny Bailly
UnscentedRead More »from 4 Bogus Skincare Claims
What you think it means: Free of any fragrances.
What it really means: The product doesn't have a detectable odor--but may contain fragrances to mask its natural scent. If you're trying to avoid fragrance ingredients (which are the most common allergens found in skincare products), "fragrance-free" is a better label to look for--although it, too, can be tricky. "If the primary reason for including a fragrance is not related to scent--some fragrances, for example, can act as preservatives--then a product may still be labeled fragrance-free," says Baumann.
What to look for instead: If possible, test products labeled fragrance-free on your inner wrist and wait a day to see if you have any reaction. You can also scan ingredient lists for the most common fragrances that cause allergies: cinnamic alcohol, cinnamic aldehyde, eugenol, hydroxy-citronellal, geraniol, isoeugenol, and oak moss absolute.
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Photo: ThinkstockBy Lynn AndrianiRead More »from 6 Low-Cal Ingredients Every Kitchen Needs
The New Asian Green
As meatless mains become, well, mainstream, we're seeing more interesting vegetables in produce aisles. Komatsuna is one; it's a leafy green that's rich in vitamins and minerals. Like kale, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower, it has a lot of flavor and can punch up everything from soup to pasta. Earthbound Farm has just started selling a mix it calls Zen Blend, which includes komatsuna, baby spinach, baby kale, red pak choi and red mizuna. Eat it raw in salads; sauté it with garlic and olive oil and stir into pasta or serve as a side dish; or add a fistful to soup in the last five minutes of cooking.
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The Sneaky Baking Staple
You may have occasionally baked with applesauce before, but what you may not realize is that you can use any variety, smooth or chunky, in nearly any baked good, from pound cake to cranberry muffins to brownies. By replacing half of whatever fat the recipe calls for--such
Photo: Mauricio Alejo
By Nancy Kalish
Exhaust fumes, smog, secondhand smoke: When you step outside, you expect to be exposed to unhealthy elements lurking in the air. But if you think staying indoors is automatically safer, think again. Your home can be up to five times more polluted with common organic chemicals than outdoor air, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). And in winter, as you keep windows locked tight to seal in warmth, you could be inhaling a concentrated cocktail of potentially dangerous chemicals found in products like air fresheners and cleaning supplies.
RELATED: 5 Choices We All Make in Life
Detoxify the Way You Clean
The cleansers, sprays, and stain removers you use to keep your home spotless are major sources of indoor toxins. A 2012 guide of more than 2,100 common cleaning products by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), a nonprofit research organization, found that 53 percent contained chemicals like sodium or potassium hydroxide, whichRead More »from Is Your Home Making You Sick?
By Adam Glassman
Make over your bottom half with these flaw-erasing jeans.
Photo: ThinkstockBy Corrie PikulRead More »from Anxiety Busters that Don't Require an Rx
The 10-Minute Cure for Monkey Mind
We know you don't need a study to convince you of the mind-quieting potential of meditation (didn't we all read Eat Pray Love?), but this one's pretty impressive: A group of Boston University researchers analyzed the results of 39 studies with 1,140 total participants to assess how effective mindfulness-based therapy really was (they admitted in their conclusion that they were initially skeptical). They found that this type of meditation is legitimately effective in treating not just anxiety, mood disorders and depression, but also cancer and other psychiatric and medical conditions. The icing on the cake: just a few minutes will do the trick. And a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that meditation can lower stress in less than a week.
Recommended dosage: Try these 10-minute mini-meditations that are meant to be incorporated into your day.
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- Oprah.com | Healthy Living – Wed, Jan 23, 2013 4:52 PM EST
By Corrie Pikul
Fill Your Bottle With Water, Not Bacteria
Remember to fill your water bottle from your tap at home. Secret swab tests at gyms across the country have discovered bacteria thriving on water fountains that could cause lung, skin and eye infections. One test by a cleaning company even determined that the gym's drinking fountains were germier than the toilets.
Extra time: 2 minutes
Use Your Phone As A Motivator (And A Moneymaker)
Make a digital entrance. Apps that help you track how much and how often you exercise, like RunKeeper, Fitocracy, MyFitnessPal and Nike+, can be a kick in the pants to work out longer, harder and with more enthusiasm. Thank the Hawthorne effect -- the tendency to act differently when you believe your actions are being observed (even if the only observer is you). As a feel-good bonus, apps like Plus 3 Network and Earndit also allow you to accrue points that translate into charitable donations or gift cards and discounts -- justRead More »from Same Workout, Better Results (if You Do These Things First)
By Lynn Andriani
Eating your vegetables has never been easier (and neither has polishing off a bowl of rice), thanks to these fuss-free dishes.
Photo: ThinkstockBy Corrie Pikul
"A twitching eyelid is a sure sign that you've got too much on your plate."
Stress could be causing your eyelid to make you look like an overenthusiastic flirt--but so could fatigue or even dry eyes, which affects half of women over 40, says Anne Sumers, MD, a clinical correspondent for the American Academy of Ophthalmology. Sumers says that while ophthalmologists like her see at least three patients every week with eyelid spasms, there's no clear consensus on what causes them. However, experts are sure that these twitches aren't a sign of a serious problem. Sumers says that it may help to get more rest, to try lubricating eye drops or to take a vacation from work--but even if you do nothing, she says the spasms should go away on their own in four to six weeks (at the most).
"Taking deep, slow breaths can help you calm down when you're feeling panicked and overwhelmed."
It makes sense that when you're short of breath, you should try toRead More »from Stress Myths--Debunked
Photo: ThinkstockBy Amy Shearn
The Pinterest-Pretty Wedding at the Italian Villa
No, you're not imagining it. These days, one in four couples ties the knot in a far-flung locale rather than the local country club, according to a study by TheKnot.com and WeddingChannel.com. In other words, 24 percent of nuptials are now destination weddings, up from 20 percent in 2009, and the chances are good you'll be invited to one of them. Even assuming your hosts follow the etiquette suggested by TheKnot.com's Destination Wedding site and provide you with free events and transportation during the festivities, you're still going to be on the hook for your own airfare, hotel rooms, restaurant meals, kenneling pets at home and so on. So remember what a joy it is to be able to share this blessed event as you set aside the $1,500 or so it will take to make it happen.
Fixing Your Forever Boots
In the 18th century, people generally had one pair of shoes that they repaired and wore and repaired ad infinitum.Read More »from Sneaky Costs Everybody Forgets to Budget For