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  • Why Kate Middleton’s Natural Childbirth Should Inspire Us All

    ccBy Vanessa Gobes

    Kate had natural childbirth!

    Kate had natural childbirth!

    Kate had natural childbirth!

    I'm not sure how reliable the reporting on Access Hollywood is, but I flipped on the TV last week to get the latest royal baby update and heard that Kate had natural childbirth.

    After a Google search I quickly learned that Princess Kate was taking steps to prepare herself for a drug-free experience; and if Mario Lopez's man on the scene is correct, doulas, midwives, and natural childbirth advocates around the United States are jumping for joy.

    The US ranks among the countries with the highest rates of epidural use and Cesarian section. It's hard to decipher exact numbers as some hospitals report childbirth stats and some don't, but on average well over 60% of vaginal births in America employ an epidural. Some hospitals report 95% epidural use for vaginal births. 32% of births overall are Cesarian, many of which are scheduled and elective.

    We Americans tend to learn

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  • I’m Not Your B****, Yo. (And Neither is Beyonce. Or Any Woman Ever)

    ccccBy Rakhi Kumar

    This article references a previous blog I wrote, entitled: An Open Letter to Michelle Obama: Beyonce is Not a Role Model

    Two months, an estimated 300,000+ readers, and over 30,000 actual Facebook likes after I wrote the Beyonce piece, I've gotten a piece - a piece of everyone and the world's mind.

    (As precursor here I should say that in this article I am not singling out any one person who sent me messages in 'conversation' no matter how strong their position because I don't think that's fair. But, for those writers who published reply articles (that I know about) and who actually wanted readers, I am citing those here with links attached for people to visit and read.)

    Through that lovely vehicle of social media, the #Beyhive came out, appropriately in droves: warm, fuzzy and stinging. They told me I should 'watch my back', that my 'very life was in danger', that I was 'a ho', that I had a 'double chin', and rather directly that I needed 'more dick' in

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  • Is Monogamy Killing Women’s Sex Drive? the New Drug that Might Help

    flickrflickr"Women are programmed for monogamy" goes the conventional understanding we've clung to since Victorian times. After all, they have a finite number of eggs, which means the pressure to secure a viable mate and reproduce is more pressing for them than for men, who produce limitless sperm over the course of a lifetime. It's a tidy package that, ostensibly, helps maintain societal order and respectability. Let men do a bit of wandering and experimenting - because "boys will be boys," after all - but women will always maintain the hearth and the family unit. Well, hold on to your wives because new research is painting a very different picture of women's sexuality.

    The story begins with a young, broken-hearted Dutch university student, Adriaan Tuiten. Adriaan had been in love with the same girl since he was 13-years-old, and then in their mid-20′s she unexpectedly broke up with him. Fast-forward thirty-plus years, Tuiten is now the primary inventor and researcher behind the new female sex

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  • Will Banning Underweight Models Prevent Eating Disorders?


    By Chelsea Roff

    In 2007, Israeli fashion model Hila Elmaliah died of anorexia at 34-years-old. She had dwindled away to just under 60 pounds when she passed.

    Elmaliah's untimely death motivated her friend, Israeli photographer and modeling agent Adi Barkan, to campaign for legislation in Israel that would prevent underweight models from walking the catwalk. Just over a year ago, Barkan got his wish and Israel passed a law that imposes strict regulations on the country's modeling industry.

    In January of this year, five years after Elmaliah's death, the new law finally went into effect. The law bans underweight models in Israel from catwalks and commercials, a measure that many believe will reduce eating disorders and promote a healthy body image in a country where the fashion industry runs supreme. The new legislation requires models to produce a medical report at every photo shoot for the Israeli market, demonstrating that a doctor has agreed they have a body mass

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  • An Open Letter to Michelle Obama: Beyonce is Not a Role Model

    webwebBy Rakhi Kumar

    Dear Michelle Obama,

    I'm addressing this to you because I admire you. Because you're smart and a mum to two young girls. And you're the First Lady of the USA. And because you were recently quoted as saying that Beyonce is a great 'role model' to your two daughters, and because you recently tweeted, after the Superbowl, that you were 'so proud' of her. I'm writing because everything you do is admired and emulated by so many; but when you endorse a recording artist like Beyonce, I see the most misogynistic aspects of the music industry (that prefers girls to be no more complex than dolls) interpret your comments as a seal of approval for the thoughtless cultural currency that they flood the youth market with. I'm writing because I think it's time to stop suggesting to very young girls that ultimate feminine success - in the music industry or anywhere else - comes with the need, or the expectation for them to undress.

    When Beyonce kicked off her Mrs. Carter Show

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  • Why Do Women Hate Their Bodies?


    By Chelsea Roff

    Do women see themselves less accurately than strangers do?

    According to a study commissioned by Dove, only 4% of women around the world would describe themselves as beautiful. 72% of young girls included in the survey say they feel "tremendous pressure to be beautiful," and more than half (54%) agree that when it comes to how they look, they are their own worst beauty critic.* Another study found that 97% of women have negative body thoughts on a daily basis -- on average every 15 minutes.

    That's a lot of time to spend castigating yourself.

    These are no doubt alarming statistics, but it's difficult to completely understand the emotional impact of these beliefs from cold numbers alone. Perhaps that's why the team at Dove decided to perform a social experiment to test whether women's perceptions of their bodies differ from those of a stranger's. And they went about it in a way that might surprise you: by enlisting the help of a forensic sketch

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  • 6 Steps to a Healthier Lifestyle

    This week's episode of "Perfectly Imperfect Parents" on The Chopra Well focuses on how parents can teach and model healthy living habits to kids. Dr. Cara Natterson from the show shares her own tips for a healthier, happier lifestyle.

    Watch the "Healthy Living" episode here!

    By Dr. Cara Natterson

    Frankly, that phrase is pretty intimidating: "Healthy Living." If you aren't abiding by it perfectly when you read it, it actually even feels judgy. It's not meant to be, though. Healthy living is a goal, and so maybe the better term would be "healthier living."

    What is healthier living? It is taking whatever you are doing a step in the right direction. You know when you are really, really craving that chocolate chip cookie after lunch and you fight the urge and choose a juicy tangerine instead? And then you are completely floored that you sweet craving is gone because you have actually consumed something sweet? Yeah, that's healthier living. It doesn't mean you will never

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  • How to Teach Our Kids About the Perils of Lying

    cwcwBy The Chopra Well

    This week's episode of "Perfectly Imperfect Parents" on The Chopra Well is all about lying and how parents handle it with their kids. Deepak Chopra makes a guest appearance to discuss the grey areas, but one voice remains adamant that lying is never okay: Dr. Cara Natterson is a pediatrician and author of The Care and Keeping of You. We interviewed her on her firm stance against lying and how parents can model the merits of honesty to their kids.

    The Chopra Well: What's your view on kids lying - sometimes okay, never okay?

    Dr. Cara Natterson: The best advice I ever got, ever in my whole life I think, was this:

    Never tell a lie and then you won't have to remember what you said.

    As a pediatrician and as a mom, my rule is that lying is never okay. This is a boundary - and an important one at that - because it keeps kids safe. I don't really care what my kids might be lying about. For me, there are no gradations here. A lie is a lie, and teaching the

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  • How Becoming a Mom Improved My Body Image

    By Dani Klein Modisett

    How timely that "body image," is the topic for "Perfectly Imperfect Parents" this week because a new story of mine, " The White Food Disorder," is part of a book launching next week called THE CASSOULET SAVED OUR MARRIAGE: True Tales of Food, Family, and How We Learn to Eat.

    Playing with lightPlaying with lightIn it I reveal how happy I was when I found out I was having a boy during each of my pregnancies. Not because I don't love little girls, I do, although the Princess thing scares me, but because what frightened me more was passing down my body obsession and eating disordered history to daughters who might have sprung from my loins. Wait, men have the loins; I have a womb - that, in fact, my children lived in for nine plus months during which I spent not an insignificant amount of time wondering A) if I was gaining too much weight, B) if I would ever have arms again that weren't the circumference of small dogs, and C) if eating two boxes of Pepperidge Farm anything was too much

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  • Should Parents Allow Their Kids on Social Media?

    By Mallika Chopra

    Before we began "Perfectly Imperfect Parents", I emailed my mommy friends and posted a question on Facebook, Twitter and Intentblog:

    What parenting topics are most important to you today? What should we be talking about on this show?

    By far, the number one response that I got back was friends asking us to discuss how parents should deal with social media. And most of the responses expressed fear, anxiety, and uncertainty about how to control their kids.

    Screen Shot 2013-02-27 at 12.11.25 PMScreen Shot 2013-02-27 at 12.11.25 PMI'm sure parents of every generation feel they are dealing with trends that are ahead of what they understand or even know about, and they are overwhelmed with uncertainty. And with each generation perhaps we feel we live in more difficult times than those before us.

    Social media seems to be the big theme amongst my fellow parents. Questions like: When should they get a phone? Are they on Instagram? What about Snap Chat? What are the other apps and sites out there?

    Here is what's going on in

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