Blog Posts by Oprah.com

  • The Hunch That Saved My Health—and My Life

    Photo: Olivia BarrPhoto: Olivia BarrAs told to Lisa Kogan

    I was 46 years old, I had three terrific kids, a happy marriage, and a painting studio where I spent hours every day. Not only was nothing wrong in my life, plenty was incredibly right. But then I had the dream.

    RELATED: 5 Women Whose Hunches Changed - or Saved - Their Lives

    I was standing at a barbed-wire fence across from five or six terribly frail people with huge dark eyes and ghostly pale skin. They were trying to tell me something in a language I didn't understand. It was intense and disturbing, and it left me rattled.

    A week later I had the dream again, only this time there were a dozen people trying to get me to grasp what they were saying.

    RELATED: How to Tune in to the Voice Within

    The following week the dream returned, but now there were 20 people, and they looked desperate. I woke up crying. I started feeling afraid to go to sleep.

    Even though my husband thought I was overreacting, I called my doctor to schedule a

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  • What Do Scientists Have to Say About Sex?

    Photo: ThinkstockPhoto: ThinkstockWhat's the latest science on sex? Here are four expert findings that may surprise you.
    1. The scent of a woman's tears decreases sexual arousal in men, according to research from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel.

    RELATED: 14 Really Good Sex Questions Answered!

    2. A study at the University of Toronto has revealed that male rats raised with more sisters than brothers are less appealing to potential female mates.

    RELATED: What Women Can Learn from Men

    3. Based on the thorough scientific review of natural aphrodisiacs to date, conducted at the University of Guelph in Ontario, ginseng root boosts arousal and sexual satisfaction, and chocolate increases desire.

    RELATED: Love, Food and Healthy Aphrodisiacs

    4. A recent study found that a man is more than twice as likely to stay with an unfaithful girlfriend if she cheats on him with a woman than with a man, whereas women are more likely to break up with a boyfriend over a homosexual affair than a heterosexual one.

    RELATED:

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  • 3 Ingenious Ways to Save Money on Gadgets and Appliances

    Photo: ThinkstockPhoto: ThinkstockBy Paige Greenfield and Meredith Bryan

    Major Appliances: Get Paid for an Upgrade

    Go to ApplianceRebate.com and choose the kind of appliance you want, then type in your zip code. The site, which aggregates cash-back offers from manufacturers, retailers, utility companies, and others in your area, will provide all the forms you need to obtain each rebate. You can get hundreds of dollars back for recycling an old fridge and buying a new, energy-efficient one.

    RELATED: 7 Deals You Should Never Make

    You can also search for the exact refrigerator model you want on PriceGrabber.com, which will list online retailers by price, from lowest to highest (including shipping). When we searched for one particular refrigerator, prices ranged from $1,738 to $2,499!''

    RELATED: 7 Easy Ways to Find Hundreds of Dollars in Less Than an Hour

    Cell Phone Service: PrePay

    An unlimited prepaid monthly plan can cost about half of a traditional unlimited plan.

    Another option: Upload an

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  • Are You Secretly a Stress Junkie?

    Photo: ThinkstockPhoto: ThinkstockBy Martha Beck

    Like most recovering addicts, I clearly remember the moment I finally hit bottom. I'd been strung out for months: sleepless, poorly nourished and hollow-eyed, but still manically active. No matter how dilapidated my body became, my favorite chemicals could always make me feel fine. Until one day, they couldn't. Hello, my name is Martha, and I'm a stress junkie.

    RELATED: Take the Stress Detector Test

    Stress Abuse
    Stress junkies are people who, without even knowing it, use their own physiological responses as a mood-altering device. When we perceive ourselves to be in a threatening situation, we have specific reactions designed to help us either run like hell or battle for our lives: Our blood pressure increases (rushing extra oxygen to the muscles) and our digestive processes slow down (preserving energy).

    Naturally, there's a catch. Just like heroin or aerosol fumes, stress hormones have side effects that can kill you. Pumped into the bloodstream at high levels for

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  • 5 Easy Ways to Extend Your Summer Wardrobe into Fall

    Photo: Joshua JordanPhoto: Joshua JordanBy Brooke Kosofsky Glassberg

    As Modern Family star Sofia Vergara shows, all it takes are a few key pieces to turn summer staples into fall's big news.

    A Floral Dress with a Cardigan or Trench


    This floral silk dress is perfect for an end-of-summer party, and it segues easily into fall with a chunky cardigan and high-heeled galoshes or a trench and stacked-heel boots. "These are fun outfits because they're so unexpected," Vergara says.

    Floral silk dress, CH Carolina Herrera; Chunky cardigan, Nanette Lepore; High-heeled galoshes, Hunter Boot; Trench, Burberry Brit. Stacked-heel Boots, Tommy Hilfiger; Heels, Christian Dior.

    RELATED: What to Wear If You've Gained (or Lost!) Weight





    Photo: Joshua JordanPhoto: Joshua JordanTop Off Your Maxidress with a Cozy Sweater

    This airy cashmere-cotton pullover beautifully complements fall's floor-grazing skirt with a thigh-high slit. "Maxi lengths are so easy, and you look put-together," Vergara says.

    Pullover, Rebecca Taylor; Skirt, Jenni Kayne; Tank,

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  • The 5 Best Things to Do for Your Relationship

    Photo: ThinkstockPhoto: ThinkstockBy Nina Burleigh

    1: "Stop all shame, blame, and criticism. Instead ask for what you want in a clear, specific, and positive manner, and express appreciation for your partner. To elaborate: Men need to feel competent-that they make a contribution and that it is noticed. They like to be told what 'behavior' makes you happy. Since men tend to express affection by doing things, you should interpret their actions as love. When men know what to do and are acknowledged for it, they tend to keep doing it." - Harville Hendrix, PhD, author of Getting the Love You Want

    RELATED: 5 Couples Reveal What it Really Takes to Stay Together

    2: "Change from a critical habit of mind, in which you're very involved with your partner's mistakes, to a positive one, in which you catch him doing something right. Notice one small thing, and express genuine appreciation. That will change your interaction patterns from escalating negativity and criticism to building a culture of appreciation." - John M. Gottman,

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  • 4 Things We Didn't Know About Pasta

    Photo: France RuffenachPhoto: France RuffenachBy Lynn Andriani

    Fresh Pasta Is Not Always Better Than Dried

    "There is nothing like fresh, homemade pasta," Domenica Marchetti, author of The Glorious Pasta of Italy , says, "but I won't say one is better than the other." Many supermarkets now carry artisan boxed pastas. They're a little more expensive, but they're still comparatively cheap, and since they are cut with bronze dies (instead of Teflon dies, which some lower-quality commercial brands use), they have a rougher surface to which sauce clings well (like mafalde, which is a natural for a roasted-tomato sauce). Cheaper brands also cook less evenly and can turn mushy before they're cooked all the way through.
    Get the recipe: Mafalde with Roasted Tomatoes, Robiola and Crushed Fennel Seeds


    RELATED: 31 Fresh Summer Pasta Recipes

    Keep Calm, Know Your Allies

    If you are going to make fresh pasta, take a deep breath and call upon the help of two kitchen workhorses: your food processor and your freezer. Marchetti says, "The key

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  • 5 Beauty Treats That Will Keep You Cool Through Labor Day

    By Amber Kallor

    Photo: Courtesy of L'OccitanePhoto: Courtesy of L'OccitaneNeed relief when the temperature spikes? Chill out with these must-have products.
    L'Occitane Angelica Eye Roll-On

    The rollerball soothes puffy eyes on contact; essential oil derived from the angelica flower in the south of France boosts circulation to help alleviate dark circles.

    $26; USA.LOccitane.com

    RELATED: 6 Quick Beauty Fixes for All Your Summer Skin Issues







    Photo: Courtesy of NiveaPhoto: Courtesy of NiveaNivea Express Hydration Freshening Gel

    It moisturizes dry legs and elbows without the sticky residue, while mint extract provides an instant cooling sensation.

    $7.50; Drugstore.com

    RELATED: 12 Beauty Products to Carry in Case of a Beauty Emergency







    Photo: Courtesy of DovePhoto: Courtesy of DoveDove Go Fresh Cool Moisture Beauty Bar

    A cold shower on a hot day offers instant relief, but lathering up with this hydrating bar-it smells like a freshly sliced cucumber-leaves you feeling especially refreshed.

    $4.50 for 2 bars; Soap.com

    RELATED: The Easy Guide to Flawless Skin






    Photo: Courtesy of BiorePhoto: Courtesy of BioreBioré Blemish Fighting Ice Cleanser

    Sweaty days can lead to congested

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  • 5 Findings That Will Change the Way You Tackle Clutter - Forever!

    Photo: ThinkstockPhoto: ThinkstockBy Katie Arnold-Rarliff

    Just How Messy Are You?

    Soon you might be able to answer that question down to the decimal point. Researchers at MIT, led by cognitive scientist Ruth Rosenholtz, PhD, are working on a series of computer programs designed to quantify visual clutter by measuring color, contrast, "feature congestion," and visual complexity in maps and photographs of messy spaces. Rosenholtz's work could end debates over whether your teenager's room really is a pigsty (it is), help streamline Web sites and simplify maps, and maybe even lead to the creation of smart cars that can direct drivers to avoid overly cluttered-and therefore dangerous-streets.

    RELATED: Storage Solutions from Stylish Women

    Holds Barred

    Talk about the magic touch: In a 2008 study published in the journal Judgment and Decision Making, researchers confirmed that the longer we physically hold an item, the more we value it. Two groups of 42 test subjects bid on coffee mugs they'd held in their hands

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  • 3 Things You'd Never Thought You'd Make (but Should)

    Photo: ThinkstockPhoto: ThinkstockBy Lynn Andriani

    And no, I'm not talking about a whole barbecued octopus with two equally out-there sides. These three dishes are just a little beyond the norm, but doable. I came across them in a new food quarterly from chef David Chang called Lucky Peach. While the issue focuses on ramen, there are some hidden, non-ramen gems inside.

    RELATED: How David Chang is Changing the Food Culture in America

    Sauteed lettuce. This is part of a ramen-crusted skate recipe, but I'd skip the fish (leave dredging skate in instant-ramen breadcrumbs to Chang) and go straight to the vegetable: Add a head or two of iceberg or butter lettuce, torn, to a skillet that's already sizzling with a tablespoon of grapeseed oil and a "nice big knob of butter." Toss in a pinch of salt and cook, stirring, until the lettuce is wilted but not completely slack, one or two minutes. Chang gives bonus points if you season it with a dash of vinegar or a squeeze of lemon.

    RELATED: 8 Mouthwatering Meals That Can Last All

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