Blog Posts by The Editors of WOMEN'S HEALTH

  • 5 Ways to Bust Out of a Beauty Rut

    Can't remember the last time you changed your makeup look? We're here to help



    It's one thing to go through a makeup phase-fuchsia lipstick and glitter nail polish, anyone?-but it's quite another to experience a full-on beauty rut. According to a new survey by CouponCodes4u.com, the average woman keeps the same daily makeup look for 11 years. Eleven! Repeat after us: Change is good. Try these five tweaks to freshen up a stale beauty routine.




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  • How to Overcome 5 Common Fitness Slumps

    Unlike other vacations, exercise breaks generally last longer than you'd like--and the mementos they come with are ones you'd rather not hang on to. You know how it goes: Two missed workouts snowball into two months of zero fitness motivation, and suddenly you can't button your jeans or do a pushup to save your life. In fact, research shows that body fat, weight, and waist size can rise--and fitness levels can dip--after just a five-week hiatus.

    We know it's not just physical roadblocks; there are psychological and logistical challenges, as well. That's why we asked experts how to tackle tricky setbacks. No matter where you are now, this plan will help you shape up to a hotter, healthier body.

    RELATED: 21 Ways to Make Fitness Fun

    You Recently Had a Baby

    Intense exercise is usually off-limits for six weeks postpartum. After that, sheer exhaustion can keep moms couched.

    Training Tip: Even if you're wiped, pop in a DVD or slip your baby in the stroller for a brisk

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  • Should You Worry About Your Vitamin D Levels?

    Staying up to date on the latest vitamin D research is practically a full-time job--new studies come out so often. The latest findings? Consuming higher-than-recommended amounts of D may give your immune system a boost--potentially lowering their risk of some cancers, heart disease, and other conditions, according to research published online last week in the journal PLOS ONE. While previous studies have linked adequate vitamin D intake to increases in bone strength and decreases in cancer, depression, and autoimmune disorders such as Type I diabetes and multiple sclerosis, this is the first study to show that exceeding the minimum RDA could be key to better health, explains New York City nutritionist Stephanie Middleberg, RD. So does that mean you should start popping vitamin D like candy--or that a deficiency could be to blame for any health issues you might currently have?

    RELATED:
    17 Power Food Options

    Not so fast. First, the PLOS ONE study was small; it included just eight

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  • Stare at This to Eat Better

    Just glancing at the fruit bowl can help increase your self-disciplineJust glancing at the fruit bowl can help increase your self-disciplineWhat you see is what you eat: When you're trying to clean up your diet, looking at a waistline-friendly food (like an orange) may help keep you from reaching for an unhealthy snack, according to a study in the journal Eating Behaviors.

    Researchers at The University of Leeds studied 13 dieters and 21 non-dieters. On two separate occasions, they exposed each group to one of two foods-chocolate or an orange - to compare how participants reacted to tempting food afterward. After seeing and smelling one of the two foods, each group was invited to snack on an assortment of oranges, chocolate, and cereal bars for 10 minutes.

    More: Decode Your Food Cravings

    When dieters were shown the orange, they ended up consuming fewer calories and 60 percent less chocolate than when they were shown the chocolate. By contrast, the non-dieters ate a similar amount whether they glimpsed the orange or the chocolate beforehand. When you're already trying to eat healthfully, just eyeing a piece of fruit cab

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  • Best Social Networks for Fitness Junkies

    When you survive a crazy boot camp session or set a personal record on a run, there's one thing you want to do (besides shower): Tell the world. The thing is, your Facebook friends and Twitter followers probably don't want to hear it. More than half of social network users think fitness-and diet-related posts are the most annoying updates, according to a new survey conducted by Sweatband.com, a U.K.-based e-commerce site.

    Surveyors asked 1,793 Brits about the most irksome social media habits. Fifty-three percent of those polled said bragging about diet and exercise is the worst. Almost as annoying: people who share food photos, write cryptic status updates, invite others to play online games, and post baby pictures. More than 50 percent of respondents said they avoid Facebook and Twitter altogether to avoid these irritating updates, and 38 percent have quit a social media site because of them.

    Do you clog others' feeds with fitness updates? No need to risk losing friends

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  • The Best Time-Saving Workout

    FInterval training can get you in and out of the gym in no time. Here's how to do itInterval training can get you in and out of the gym in no time. Here's how to do itinding the time to work out is sometimes harder than actually working out. Well, this might be the timesaving--and even more slimming--solution to logging hours upon hours at the gym. According to a new study published in The Journal of Physiology, three sessions of spring interval training are as effective as five sessions of longer endurance exercise.

    Researchers separated participants--all young men, for the record--into two groups: the endurance training (ET) group and the sprint interval training (SIT) group. The ET group exercised for a longer period of time (40-60 minutes of cycling, 5 times a week), while the SIT group performed fewer, more intense workouts (four to six 30-second sprints with 4.5 minutes of low intensity cycling in between, 3 times a week). Though both exercise methods were beneficial, SIT, in just 90 minutes per week, "improved exercise capacity, insulin sensitivity, vascular health, and fat metabolism within the muscle," according to Sam Shepherd, PhD, one

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  • What Your Food Cravings Say About Your Health

    How to decode 5 common cravingsHow to decode 5 common cravings Is it the saltiness of potato chips, the cool creaminess of ice cream, or the rich flavor of chocolate? Whatever you're longing for, it may be your body's way of letting you know you're missing valuable nutrients. Here's how to decode your cravings.

    SWEETS
    If you crave sweets of almost any kind, you may be experiencing blood sugar fluctuations. Giving in to pie, candy, cake, or other goodies only makes the problem worse by causing blood sugar roller coasters that lead to more cravings. Yo-yo-ing sugar levels cause spikes in insulin production, which can put you at risk for type 2 diabetes.

    Instead, choose a piece of fruit--preferably one that's not loaded with natural sugars when you're craving sweets. And, in general, choose more high-fiber foods like beans and legumes and complex carbohydrates like whole grains that keep your blood sugar stable.

    Related: How to Fight Sugar Cravings and Curb Your Sweet Tooth

    CHOCOLATE

    Cravings for chocolate often indicate

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  • Harley Pasternak’s Time-Saving Workout

    Harley Pasternak is an unapologetic butt kicker. He won't stroke your ego or let you off easy--even if your name is Katy Perry, Amanda Seyfried, Megan Fox, Lady Gaga, or Jennifer Hudson. He'll push you hard and you'll love it (or at least the results you'll get). Yes, this fitness and nutrition pro, author of The 5-Factor Fitness Plan, is known as a formidable taskmaster.

    But his philosophy (an ongoing lifestyle plan) is actually pretty simple: Eat five meals a day, plan five-ingredient meals, do 25-minute workouts, and treat yourself to five cheat days a month. If you can do simple math and follow his straightforward orders, you'll be hugely successful. Here's the workout he designed exclusively for Women's Health.



    MORE: Are YOU the Next Fitness Star? Enter by February 1!






    CARDIO WARMUP
    Starting with the first exercise, do as many reps as you can in one minute, moving immediately from one exercise to the next.

    Walking High Knees: Standing tall with your feet shoulder width apart,

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  • 16 Detoxing Cleanse Foods

    Get a jump-start on losing extra pounds with these essential cleanse foodsGet a jump-start on losing extra pounds with these essential cleanse foodsAs a nutritionist, I always suggest that my clients get a jump-start on weight loss and a new way of eating with a short "cleanse," to help eliminate cravings, wake up the digestive system, and prepare the body for a new healthier way of eating. Do you make bad choices when you're hungry? Outsmart your stomach with these 8 Tricks to Suppress Your Appetite.

    Figuring out which foods are best for a "cleanse" can be tricky. So many foods feel refreshing and rejuvenating-hot tea, raw vegetables, and fresh fruit come to mind. And with good reason: foods with insoluble fiber (like raw veggies) or a diuretic effect (like green tea), promote speedy digestion and "flush" the GI tract. These foods can be considered the best "cleanse" choices. Here are some of my faves and why they just might work!

    Artichokes contain antioxidant plant compounds called caffeoylquinic acids, which are used to treat hepatic (liver) disorders because they stimulate bile flow. Bile helps the body to digest fats, and

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  • 5 Non-Gushy Ways to Strengthen Your Relationship

    The strongest unions may be the ones that focus on these five practical actionsThe strongest unions may be the ones that focus on these five practical actionsSpontaneous getaways and supersize bouquets settle squabbles in rom-coms and other fantasy realms, but in the real world, romantic gestures aren't cure-alls for relationship woes. In fact, unromantic gestures can be the better salve. Because couples are marrying later and living together before they do, continual improvement of the partnership is more important (and effective) than quick fixes, says Lisa Thomas, a licensed marriage therapist in Colorado. Nobody is suggesting romance be killed off completely--far from it. It's just smart to add these unconventional strengtheners into the happy-couple mix.

    Consider a Love Contract

    The convention: Love should be spontaneous, not scripted.

    The counter: "If you negotiate difficult issues up front, your relationship will have a much stronger footing," says Paul Hokemeyer, Ph.D., a Manhattan-based marriage therapist. See: cohabitation agreements increasing 39 percent in the past five years, per the American Academy of Matrimonial

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