by SHAPE Diet Doctor Mike Roussell, ph.D, for SHAPE.com
Is the alkaline diet healthy or hype?Q: What's the science behind alkaline versus acidic foods? Is it all hype or should I be concerned?
A: Certain people swear by the alkaline diet, while others say worrying about if your food is acidic or alkaline is worthless, citing the fact that hard evidence of its importance in humans is lacking. Although I don't recommend that you base your diet primarily on this premise, the core message of what it takes to eat an alkaline diet is worth adhering to.
Alkaline, Acidic, and PRAL Scores
What makes a food acidic or alkaline isn't what you'd think.
Take a second and think of a common acidic food that we eat. Lemons might have popped into your mind. Lemons are acidic in that they contain citric acid, but when we are talking about your body's acid/base balance, what makes a food acidic or not has to do with what happens in your kidneys.
When the nutrients in the food reach your kidneys, they produce more ammonium (acidic) or
Blog Posts by SHAPE magazine
by SHAPE Diet Doctor Mike Roussell, ph.D, for SHAPE.comRead More »from Should You Follow the Alkaline Diet?
by Krista Bennett DeMaio for SHAPE.comRead More »from Do You Need a New Skincare Regime for Summer?
Do you need to change your skincare routine this summer?When the warm weather hits, you gladly trade your sweaters for tank tops, swap your boots for sandals, and strip the heavy comforter off your bed. One more thing you may want to change: your skincare routine.
If your face isn't showing any signs of distress, no need to do anything, says Paul Jarrod Frank, M.D., a dermatologist in New York City. But if it's excessively oily, acne- prone, or extra sun-sensitive this time of year, tweaking your usual regimen can help you score clear, glowing skin again.
Try these five summer makeovers and prepare for everyone to ask what your beauty secret is.
RELATED: 10 Things You Didn't Know About Your Skin
1. Clean up your cleansing act: When your skin is oily, a creamy, hydrating cleanser just won't cut it, says Gervaise Gerstner, M.D., consulting dermatologist for L'Oréal Paris. "Your cleanser should have some sort of de-greasing effect-especially at night, when you're left with a day's worth of buildup,"
by Valerie Berkowitz, R.D., for SHAPE.comRead More »from The Weight-Loss Secret You've Never Heard
Is your liver the key to losing stubborn belly fat?If you seem to have more than an inch to pinch on your waist no matter what you eat or whether you focus on intervals or weight training, the problem may not be your stomach but another organ.
You probably don't give much thought to your liver (except maybe when you contemplate that third vodka soda), but its health is key to your overall health and weight. Your liver is the ultimate multitasker: It acts as a filter to remove toxins (like medications and alcohol) and nutrient byproducts such as ammonia from the blood; it aids in digestion by producing bile to help break down fat and absorb fat- and water-soluble vitamins and minerals; and it plays a part in regulating glucose, blood pressure, blood sugar, insulin, estrogen, testosterone, immunity, and blood cholesterol production and removal. And you thought you had a long to-do list!
Because of all of this activity, your liver may be in need of a little TLC. When it's overworked, toxic
by Charlotte Andersen for SHAPE.comRead More »from Inhaling Alcohol: Same Buzz, Less Calories?
The newest crazy way people are cutting calories from alcoholLove to party but worry about gaining a beer belly? Creative drinkers have found a way to imbibe without any of the pesky calories by pouring the liquor over dry ice or heating it until it steams and then inhaling the vapors. Sounds like a dieter's dream, right?
Not so fast. You may think you're saving your figure, but you're wreaking havoc on your body, experts say. Breathing in these fumes can have a myriad of unintended effects beyond those normally associated with drinking, including the following.
1. You get drunk faster. "When you inhale alcohol vapors, the alcohol completely bypasses the gastrointestinal tract-the stomach and liver-and thus reaches the brain much quicker," says Sheenie Armbardar, M.D., an adult psychiatrist in West Hollywood. That means speedier intoxication and impairment, plus it can have a more potent and negative effect on brain neurons. And brain cells aren't good things to lose.
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by Ashley Ross for SHAPE.comRead More »from Is Your Margarita Bad for Your Skin?
Is your after-work margarita causing this skin condition?Not long ago, my sister returned from a wedding in Mexico with a sun-kissed tan, the very envy of everyone living in Manhattan during the hybrid months of winter-spring. She had nary a hint of sunburn, either-what she had was much worse: a dark brown, rashlike burn on her hip. My first thought was melanoma, and I couldn't help but worry that she'd call me from the dermatologist with that very diagnosis. Alas, she texted me after her appointment: "Not cancer! I have margarita dermatitis."
Scientifically known as phytophotodermatitis, "margarita dermatitis" occurs when sun-sensitizing ingredients called psoralens are on the skin prior to sun exposure, explains Katie Rodan, M.D., a cosmetic dermatologist and co-creator of Proactiv. Psoralens are natural compounds found in lime (hence the margarita nickname), celery, parsley, and other acidic fruits and vegetables.
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"The reaction is phototoxic, creating a brown,
- SHAPE magazine | Healthy Living – Thu, May 30, 2013 8:10 AM EDT
by Jessica Smith for SHAPE.comRead More »from Why Tabata Training is More Effective Than Traditional Cardio
Why Tabata is king when it comes to cardioMore good news for those of us short on workout time: A new study shows that Tabata definitely lives up to its reputation as a 4-minute fat-burning miracle workout.
In the study, participants performed 20 seconds of bodyweight squat jumps, then rested 10 seconds. They repeated this sequence eight times for a total of 4 minutes and ended up blasting away an average 13.5 calories per minute (some participants burned even more!) and doubling their metabolic rates for at least 30 minutes afterward.
RELATED: 7 Tricks to Make Running More Fun
"This particular style of interval training has profound effects even on short-term post-exercise metabolism," says lead researcher Michele Olson, Ph.D., principle researcher at the Auburn University Montgomery Kinesiology Laboratory. "It would take five times the amount of typical cardio exercise to shed the same number of calories you can in a four-minute Tabata."
The important thing to note about Tabata is the
by Adam Bornstein for SHAPE.comRead More »from 3 Reasons Why You're Not Losing Fat
Frustrated because you're not losing fat? Work out like a man!A man can learn a lot from observing women in a book club for five minutes. I would know because my wife is part of a one, and every time I spend a little time with those ladies I come away much wiser and more convinced that men and women could not be much more different-unless you're talking about exercise.
You see, the exercise techniques that work best are universal to men and women. And yet most women wouldn't dare approach the gym like a guy. How do I know? Because the 10 women at my wife's book club told me so last night, and it's the same thing I've heard for the last 10 years in the fitness industry. The reality is that training "like a man" will actually make you leaner, sexier, and have your friends dying to know your secret.
RELATED: The Bikini-Bottom Workout
So forget gender differences for a moment. Here are three tips that are part of the foundation of my New York Times best-selling book, Man 2.0: Engineering the Alpha. They work well
by Krista Bennett DeMaio for SHAPE magazineRead More »from 8 Perfect Summer Scents
Find the perfect summer scentWhether you're vacationing in the country, soaking up the shore, or sticking it out in the city, one of these fragrances is guaranteed to be your go-to accessory.
1. Perfectly punchy: Like a fun cocktail, Issey Miyake L'Eau D'Issey Summer Eau De Toilette ($72 for 3.3 oz.; Sephora.com) is both fruity and sparkling. The fragrance combines sweet and tart pink grapefruit, passion fruit, and lychee with a hint of yummy vanilla.
2. Sheer and lovely: If Vince Camuto Eau De Parfum Spray, the fashion designer's first scent, could be described as nightclub chic with notes of leather, rum, and feminine rose, then his latest launch, Fiori Vince Camuto Limited Edition Eau de Parfum Spray ($78 for 3.4 oz.; Dillards.com) is more like a garden party. This summery perfume has hints of fresh pink grapefruit and nectarine, soft and delicate iris and freesia, and creamy sandalwood.
RELATED: Can You Be Addicted to Chapstick?
3. Summer glam: Jimmy Choo Flash ($98
- SHAPE magazine | Healthy Living – Wed, May 29, 2013 9:38 AM EDT
by Cristina Goyanes for SHAPE.comRead More »from Can Peeing in a Cup Reveal If You Have Breast Cancer?
Could this new test replace the mammogram?Between the news of Angelina Jolie's double mastectomy and her maternal aunt's recent passing from the disease at age 61, many of us have breast cancer on the brain. Whether or not it runs in the family, as in Jolie's case, nearly 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer during their lifetime, and it's scary to think that this Russian roulette-like diagnosis is out of your hands. One silver-lining is that scientists are looking to make early detection as simple as peeing in a cup.
A new study from Missouri University of Science and Technology revealed that a screening method may detect breast cancer in a small urine sample. In the blind study of 300 breast cancer patients and 100 cancer-free participants, researchers used a device called a P-scan to look for an abnormally high concentration of metabolites called pteridines in the urine samples. While pteridines are always present in humans, high levels can indicate cancer, and the higher the levels,
by Linda Melone, C.S.C.S, for SHAPE.comRead More »from Why Does My Workout Suddenly Feel Harder?
6 reasons your normal workout might suddenly be kicking your buttWhen you're chained to your desk until midnight to meet a deadline or are out even later having fun, you expect to be low on energy and feel it at the gym the next day. But when you bank quality beauty sleep yet every minute on the elliptical seems like an hour, it just doesn't make sense.
The next time you feel as if you're dragging yourself through quicksand, consider these six things that have nothing to do with slumber but could be just the thing that's zapping your zing.
(Note: If none of these apply to you and you're still exhausted, see a doctor to rule out other health issues such as chronic fatigue syndrome.)
1. You're dehydrated: Hot summer days mean you sweat more-and probably need more water than you're sipping, especially if you're exercising outdoors. "If you take a drink of water and find yourself downing the whole glass all at once, you're likely dehydrated," says Jacob Teitelbaum, M.D., a board certified internist and owner of