Blog Posts by SHAPE magazine

  • 7 Times when Food Actually is the Answer

    by Cristina Goyanes for

    Sometimes noshing can actually help with your problems.Sometimes noshing can actually help with your problems.You know that stuffing your face to feel better, happier, or calmer usually doesn't work. But in certain cases, noshing can actually help. When life bites, here's how to bite back!

    1. You're in a funk:
    Eat: Sweet potatoes
    When you're feeling low, resist the urge to reach for chips or candy, and bake an orange tater instead. "Sweet potatoes are one of the most nutritious sources of carbohydrates, and when you consume carbs, they create an instant surge in serotonin, a feel-good chemical that lifts mood," says Lyssie Lakatos, R.D., co-author of The Secret To Skinny. And thanks to the fiber in the tubers, the carbs will enter your blood stream at a more gradual rate, helping keep your energy level stable. Read: You won't crash later and revert to being a grumpy pants, as can happen after a peanut butter cup binge.

    RELATED: The 12 Best Power Foods for Women

    2. You can't sleep:
    Eat: Hummus
    This Middle Eastern dip may help you dive into a

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  • Another Fast-Food Chain is Cleaning Up Its Act

    by Keri Gans, R.D.N., for

    Chick-fil-a is making changes to its menuChick-fil-a is making changes to its menuThere is more good news on the fast-food front. Chick-fil-A says it's removing high-fructose corn syrup from its white buns, artificial dyes from its sauces and dressings, and yellow dye from its chicken soup as part of a push to improve its ingredients. Except for the chicken soup, the reformulations are simply a test, which will be in around 200 of their Georgia locations starting now through early next year. They are also testing a new peanut oil that doesn't contain the chemical preservative TBHQ like their present one does.

    I am trying to remain positive as I write this blog. Trust me, I am all about small changes and am so glad that the team at Chick-fil-A has decided to make some of their products healthier, just like many of the other quick-serve restaurants. Better late than never. Still, I can't help but wonder why so many questionable ingredients have been used in fast-food products for so long, and how many are still persistent on

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  • The Best Wines Under $20

    by Candice Kumai and Locke Hughes for

    These bottles are special enough for any special or holiday occasion, but the reasonable price tags invite you to enjoy them any day of the week.

    Ravenswood 2012 zinfandel blendRavenswood 2012 zinfandel blend1. 2012 Ravenswood Vintners Blend "Old Vine" Zinfandel, California: The man who founded Ravenswood is widely regarded as the "godfather of Zin," so this is a name you should look for when buying this varietal, says wine consultant Leslie Sbrocco, author of Simple and Savvy Wine Guide and Wine for Women: A Guide to Pairing and Sharing. With notes of black cherry, raspberries, and blueberries, this mouthwatering, unapologetic wine also features a hint of smoke that gives it more body.

    Pair with:
    Ribs or other spicy grilled meats. It also goes well with hearty pastas loaded with earthy veggies and tomato sauces. ($10;

    RELATED: The Best Low-Cal Cocktails for Every Spirit

    Terrazas Malbec 2010Terrazas Malbec 20102. 2010 Terrazas de Los Andes, Malbec Reserva, Mendoza, Argentina: One of Argentina's top Malbec

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  • Intermittent Fasting: Not Just for Weight Loss?

    by Keri Gans, R.D.N., for

    Is intermittent fasting a healthy way to lose weight?Is intermittent fasting a healthy way to lose weight?If you are like many people I know, after Thanksgiving you feel terrible about the food choices you made and think you have totally blown your "diet." Some will decide to take matters into their own hands immediately and get back on track. Others may start the spiral downward till New Years and let all their hard work for the year be sabotaged. And then there are those who may have heard about new research on intermittent fasting and think that's the way to undo the holiday damage.

    RELATED: The Best Non-Diet Diets

    In an unpublished study of 26 obese adults, those who fasted completely every other day and ate with no restrictions the rest of the time lost about the same amount of weight in two months as those who didn't fast at all. But four months later, after patients were off the intervention, those who had the initial "intermittent fasting" intervention had dropped more pounds and had greater improvements in memory than those on a standard

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  • How to Stay Slim, Sane, and Healthy This Holiday Season

    by Cristina Goyanes for

    Have fun and stay slim this holiday seasonHave fun and stay slim this holiday seasonGoing into the scale-tipping holiday season from Thanksgiving to New Year's, the typical mindset is to amp up workouts, cut calories, and stick to crudités at parties to dodge those extra holiday pounds. But who actually does that?

    This year, dare to be different: Rather than take on unrealistic demands during an already stressful time, focus on only one thing that will help you look better, feel less tempted by party food, have more energy, and brighten your mood. The answer is as simple as sipping more water.

    "Drinking water is the silver bullet for many of the challenges we face during the holidays," says nutritionist Kate Geagan, a CamelBak hydration expert and author of Go Green Get Lean. Fact is, we don't give H2O enough credit and it can have a dramatic impact on your overall well-being. When water levels drop in your body, even as little as 2%, you may start to see some side effects, from overeating and weight gain (you may mistake thirst

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  • Why You Shouldn't Do a Juice Cleanse Right After Thanksgiving

    by Cristina Goyanes for

    Why you shouldn't do a juice cleanse this holiday seasonWhy you shouldn't do a juice cleanse this holiday seasonIf you've uttered the words "I'm never eating again" while clutching your bloated, about-to-burst belly at past Thanksgiving dinners, you may think literally quitting solid foods cold turkey after your turkey feast is a good idea. After all, a juice cleanse offers a much-desired break from chewing and digestion, and comes with rave endorsements from slim celebrities plus alluring health and weight-loss claims from popular juice companies.

    But before you order that six-pack of greens to "detox" your body, it's important to understand the hard-to-swallow truth about juicing, especially right after your biggest gorge-fest of the year.

    Not So Fast
    Despite glowing reviews from diehard juiceheads, there's no science to support that juice cleanses actually live up to their promises. In fact, many doctors think of these as bottles of B.S.

    "This feast-or-famine approach to eating is not healthy," says Lynn Allen, M.D., an endocrinologist from the

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  • How to Lose 10 Pounds--Fast

    by Jay Cardiello for

    Lose weight quickly and safely with these tips!Lose weight quickly and safely with these tips!Whether it's a big event, a vacation that involves bikinis, or something else entirely, women often want to lose 10 pounds-and do so fast. Good news: The secret to quick weight loss doesn't mean you need to spend more time in the gym.

    Losing weight is a 24-hour-a-day lifestyle that consists of proper sleep, nutrition, hydration, and fitness. In fact, in my opinion, 80 percent of all fitness success happens with what you eat. We all know that if you're trying to slim down, the most important formula is calories in versus calories out. However, sticking to a deprivation-style, low-calorie diet will only do one thing: make you crash. Instead aim for 1,200 to 1,600 calories daily, and be sure to keep a food journal to know exactly how many calories you're ingesting.

    RELATED: 10 Unbelievable Diet Rules Backed By Science

    For the fitness part of your plan, use these tips:

    1. Do compound exercises. The best bodyweight exercises for weight loss work

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  • Could This At-Home HPV Test Save Your Life?

    Can this at-home HPV test save your life?Can this at-home HPV test save your life?by Charlotte Andersen for

    Cervical cancer is the easiest female cancer to prevent, yet many women don't regularly have a Pap smear. It's not the embarrassment of "scooting down" in those metal straps-these women have low incomes or are uninsured. Soon, however, they may be able to use a new home test to detect human papillomavirus (HPV), the main cause of this cancer.

    Similar to the Pap performed by your gynecologist, for the at-home HPV test, women used a small brush to collect their own sample of vaginal and cervical cells, and then mailed the sample to the researchers. Ninety-seven percent of the participants said they had no problems doing this. The women then saw doctors for further testing since HPV tests cannot directly detect cervical cancer.

    RELATED: 5 DIY Health Checks That Could Save Your LIfe

    The test was not quite as accurate as the more advanced one used in doctors' offices, said study researcher Andrea Des Marais of the University of North Carolina

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  • 9 "Time Wasters" that Are Actually Productive

    by Locke Hughes for

    9 surprising tips that help you be happier9 surprising tips that help you be happierWhen your to-do list is a mile long, your inbox is overflowing, and your head is spinning, stepping away from your desk for a little while seems unreasonable at best, impossible at worst. But research shows that many activities typically deemed pointless can actually encourage productivity.

    After studying more than 11,000 CEOs and business owners, productivity expert and New York Times-bestselling author Jason Jennings found one thing they all had in commong: an affinity for taking breaks.

    "Our research found that the most successful leaders take frequent breaks throughout the workday," Jennings says. From listening to music to taking a walk around the block, read on for nine ways that you too can "waste" time effectively.

    1. Leave the building: "After you sit for an extended period of time, about two-thirds of your blood settles below your waistline," Jennings says. "You need to get up and move around every so often to get the blood flowing

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  • Are Women Really Meant to Marry?

    by Cristina Goyanes for

    Are women meant to marry?Are women meant to marry?Whether you lean in or not, most women want it all when it comes to a man. So when you find him and become his wife, you'll likely feel like your life (or at least the romantic part) couldn't be better-until you realize something seems to be missing: your libido.

    According to a small study of married women published in The Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy, wives tend to lose sexual interest long before their husbands do. And about 9 percent of women 18 to 44 report being distressed over their low desire, 2008 research found. Before you worry, hear what experts believe may be messing with the Mrs. mojo and how to keep yours going strong long after the honeymoon is over.

    What women want has changed.
    Holy matrimony isn't what it used to be. The female's perspective of a good, strong union is more complicated than ever-and, in some cases, bordering on unrealistic. Psychotherapist and Mating in Captivity author Esther Perel summed it up best in

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