Getty ImagesBy Tammy Worth
When it comes to mental illness, there are plenty of stereotypes. But in reality, mood disorders can be hard to pinpoint-particularly in people with bipolar disorder symptoms.
"Chalking it up to moodiness or trouble at work or tiredness is pretty common," says Carrie Bearden, PhD, an associate professor in residence of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and psychology at the David Geffen School of Medical at UCLA. "The disorder varies in severity."
Here are 10 signs that mood problems may be due to more than a quirky or difficult personality.
Bipolar disorder is characterized by up-and-down episodes of mania and depression. During a manic phase, some patients can have a total break from reality.
But hypomania, which is also a symptom of the disorder, is a high-energy state in which a person feels exuberant but hasn't lost his or her grip on reality.
"Hypomania can be a pretty enjoyable state, really," Dr. Bearden says. A person's mood can be elevated,
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Getty ImagesBy Tammy WorthRead More »from 10 subtle signs of bipolar disorder
Getty ImagesCelebrate Easter Sunday by leaving the Peeps and chocolate bunnies in your basket. Instead, feast on these healthy, fresh, and fast spring recipes.Read More »from Easy Easter brunch recipes
Mini Smoked Salmon Frittatas
These portion-controlled frittatas sneak in healthy substitutions without compromising flavor. Egg whites, low-fat cream cheese, and scallions add a savory taste for less than 200 calories.
Ingredients: Olive oil, onion, smoked salmon, eggs, half-and-half, milk, low-fat cream cheese, scallions
Try this recipe: Mini Smoked Salmon Frittatas
Triple Pea Salad With Creamy Tarragon Dressing
This veggie-rich dish contains a hearty dose of vitamin C in every crunchy bite. And the light yet creamy dressing kicks the flavor up a notch.
Ingredients: White wine vinegar, reduced-fat sour cream, olive oil, honey, tarragon, frozen peas, edamame, sugar snap peas, mixed salad greens, radish wedges
Try this recipe: Triple Pea Salad With Creamy Tarragon Dressing
Goat Cheese, Artichoke, and Smoked
IstockphotoBy Tina HaupertRead More »from 11 ways to save money on healthy food
You've heard the old excuse before: Healthy eating is expensive. I can confidently call my food choices healthy-at least most of the time-but I'm also a cheapskate at heart. Luckily, I manage to eat healthy on a budget, thanks to a few simple swaps-some of which save calories, too!
Too pricey: Fresh berries
Smart swap: Frozen berries
Fresh berries are often very expensive, especially when they are out of season. Frozen berries cost much less and they're just as nutritious for you. Plus, with frozen berries, you don't have to worry about eating them before they go bad. Throwing away rotten food is like wasting money!
Too pricey: Instant oatmeal
Smart swap: Quick oats
Instant oatmeal is great in a pinch, but buying a huge canister of quick oats is a much more cost-effective option. If you compare unit price on the two items, it's much more economical to purchase the quick oats. For an on-the-go option, I portion out 1/2 cup of quick oats, put them in a Tupperware
Getty ImagesBy Carina StorrsRead More »from Will a gluten-free diet improve your health?
Sarah Cooper was a new mom in her mid-20s, busily juggling her family and a career as an electrical engineer, when everything came to a halt.
She lost all her energy. She developed acne. And she began experiencing gastrointestinal problems: bloating, diarrhea, cramping, constipation. Her doctors, thinking something must be missing from her diet, put her on various vitamins, none of which helped. "It was all I could do to go to work," she says.
After years of failed treatments, Cooper's luck changed. She saw a doctor who suspected she might have celiac disease, an autoimmune disorder that can appear at any age and is caused by an intolerance to gluten. A protein found in wheat, barley, and rye (and countless food products-like bread and pasta-that contain those grains), gluten gradually damages the intestines of people with celiac disease, preventing the absorption of vitamins and minerals and setting off a slew of related health problems, which can include fatigue
Getty ImagesBy Matt McMillenRead More »from New moms may let their health slip
New parents, particularly mothers, devote so much time and energy to their children that they often fail to adequately look after their own health, a new study in the journal Pediatrics suggests.
The study, which followed about 1,500 high school students into their mid-20s, found that those who became parents got far less exercise than their childless peers. For moms, the news gets worse: Unlike fathers, mothers tended to have a higher body mass index (BMI) and less healthy diets than women of the same age without kids.
The mothers in the study averaged about 400 calories more per day than other women. They also consumed more saturated fat, ate fewer green vegetables like broccoli and spinach, and drank nearly twice the amount of soda, sports drinks, and other sugary beverages. The researchers found no such differences among men.
Health.com: 25 ways to cut 500 calories a day
Mothers, who are usually the primary caregivers in a household, may have little time to
Getty ImagesBy Karen PallaritoRead More »from Weaves, braids may speed hair loss in black women
Weaves and braids may contribute to a type of permanent hair loss that appears to be common among black women, a new study has found.
More than one-quarter of the 326 black women who participated in the study had hair loss on the top of their scalp, and of those women, 59 percent had signs of central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia (CCCA), a poorly understood form of baldness that begins at the crown of the head and leads to scarring.
For many years, CCCA was known as "hot comb alopecia" because it was attributed to the use of hot combs to straighten curly hair. That appears to be a misnomer. Neither hot comb treatments nor chemical relaxers, which were used by more than 90 percent of the study participants, were linked with CCCA in the study, but braids, weaves, and other so-called traction hairstyles that tug at the scalp were.
Health.com: Naturally gorgeous hair makeovers
Black women often maintain these styles for long periods of time, and the stress they
Getty ImagesBy Nicole DeCoursyRead More »from 6 surprising causes of back pain
If you've ever had a bout of back pain, you're not alone: According to the National Institutes of Health, 8 out of 10 people will suffer from back pain at some point in their lives. Most of the time, back pain is set off by something totally minor, says Venu Akuthota, MD, director of the Spine Center at the University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora, Colorado.
Besides obvious causes (constantly lugging a too-heavy purse, for instance), experts say that everyday habits like hunching over your smartphone can strain your spine and the surrounding muscles over time, causing pain and making you more vulnerable to serious injury. To stop back pain now-and avoid future agony-try targeting these unexpected culprits.
Culprit No. 1: Your fancy office chair
Even an expensive, ergonomic chair can be bad for your back if you sit in it all day without a break. Sitting not only lessens blood flow to the discs that cushion your spine (wearing them out and stressing your back), but
Getty ImagesBy Cara BirnbaumRead More »from Is your diet good for your skin?
Sure, your diet keeps your body slim and healthy, but its impact doesn't stop there. The food you eat-from wrinkle-fighting antioxidants in fruits and vegetables to hydrating healthy fats in fish-may matter to your skin almost as much as it does to your waistline.
Is your way of noshing helping or hurting your complexion? We asked top docs for their take on the face-friendliness of six popular diets. Read on to see if yours passes the beauty test, and find out how you can alter what you eat for A-plus skin.
Health.com: 8 steps to healthy skin at every age
(such as The Mediterranean Diet and The Mediterranean Prescription)
The lowdown: Fish, leafy greens, olive oil, and fruit are the stars of this heart-healthy, waist-whittling diet. But the benefits don't end there-eating Mediterranean may also protect against melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, a recent Italian study suggests.
On the cosmetic front, omega-3 fatty acids in fish help keep
By Amy PaturelRead More »from Lower your miscarriage risk
When Kori Morrison had her first miscarriage, she and her husband, Tom, were upset but still hopeful. After all, she knew that 15 to 50 percent of all pregnancies end in miscarriage, and most of these women who've miscarried go on to have healthy babies. But in the next eight years, Morrison had four more miscarriages. Sadness and self-blame set in. "I wondered if I was eating the wrong things, if I was overstressed, or, worst of all, if my body just wasn't cut out for pregnancy," she says.
Morrison was eventually diagnosed with a hormone imbalance: Low progesterone during pregnancy kept her uterus from nourishing the embryo. With treatment, she went on to have four children. Although Morrison went through agony for years before discovering what was wrong, her story illustrates that there are ways to identify what causes miscarriages and what can be done to prevent them. Important to know because, while most women will go on to have a successful pregnancy, about 5
In What the Yuck?! Dr. Roshini Raj fields your most personal and provocative questions-about your body, sex, even celeb health fads.Read More »from What's the germiest at the gym?
Q: What's the germiest at the gym or spa: the sauna, steam room, or whirlpool?
A: Picture that scene in old horror movies where a mad scientist holds up a bubbling beaker full of some strange toxic brew. Blow up the size of that beaker, and you have a whirlpool-a warm, bubbling cauldron of germs. It's the worst of the three, by far.
Health.com: Degerm your gym bag
Interestingly, most of the bacteria hang out in the pipes, not the water. But when we turn on the jets, the germs are sprayed into the water. (If you own a hot tub, get the pipes professionally cleaned, and use a bleach disinfectant once a week for the tub. Remember: The hotter the water, the less effective chlorine is at keeping it germ-free.)
Health.com: Spring cleaning the smart way
Number two on the ick list: steam rooms. Warmth and extreme moisture are ideal for breeding germs. And a