Blog Posts by Self Magazine

  • Is Eating Charred Meat Really Bad for You?

    by SELF Staffers

    Getty ImagesGetty Images Yes -- for starters, the leaner the cut of meat, the better. One type of potentially cancer-causing chemical, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, forms when fat from meat drips into the fire and makes flames flicker up--those flames contain PAHs, which stick to meat if they get near. Less fat means less dripping and lower risk for PAHs.

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    Still, a second possible carcinogen, heterocyclic amines, can form when any cut of meat is cooked at a high temperature. So consider marinating, which can create a barrier between the hot surface and the meat. And scrub leftover crispy stuff off the grill before each use. All that said, if you eat healthfully in general (grill lots of veggies with those lean burgers!), I wouldn't worry too much about carcinogens in barbecued meat. Sure, there's a small risk, but I firmly believe that pleasure factors into a healthy life.

    More from SELF:
    20 Superfoods For Weight Loss
    Secrets To Firing Up Your

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  • Frozen Yogurt Vs. Slow Churned Ice Cream: Which is Best?

    by SELF Staffers

    photo: Romulo A Yanesphoto: Romulo A Yanes With warm weather in full swing, ice cream is on the shopping list as a treat for hot days. There is certainly no lack of options in this department of the grocery store but which is really the best for you and tastes good?

    Since taste is high priority for these treats, we can throw fat-free and sugar-free ice cream right off the list. They just don't compare in flavor or texture to the real thing and often times aren't as healthy as they sound. If they eliminate fat, they often add more sugar, which is slightly lower in calories but not necessarily better for you. They also have to add more ingredients to get the same creamy mouthfeel when they take the fat out. If they cut sugar, they use alternative sweeteners which are usually less satisfying and also require the addition of other less natural additions to allow for proper thickening and freezing. Both options are less like ice cream and more like a science experiment - not comparable options to the real thing!

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  • Cancer Rates Higher Near Certain Plants and Factories, New Study Says

    by Amanda MacMillan

    photo: Lacey Ann Johnsonphoto: Lacey Ann JohnsonLast year we told you about the 10 healthiest cities for women -- and warned you about the 10 unhealthiest, too. But here's something else for house hunters to consider: A brand-new study from Emory University reports that the incidence of Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma, a blood cancer, is significantly higher in communities located near refineries and manufacturing plants that release benzene into the surrounding air or water.

    However, the study, published this week in the journal Cancer, does not prove that benzene exposure causes cancer, the researchers say. But when they looked at what's been happening in the state of Georgia over the last few decades, they noticed some disturbing trends: First, they found an increase in overall lymphoma cases between 1999 and 2008 -- especially in urban areas -- 40 percent of which occurred in people 20 to 59 years old. Additionally, they found that for every mile the average distance to benzene release sites increased, there was a

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  • 4 Ways Going Meatless Will Save You Time and Money

    by Sarah-Jane Bedwell; additional reporting by Alexis Joseph

    photo: Devon Jarvisphoto: Devon Jarvis Guys, let's face the music: Meat isn't cheap! Going meatless (even just once per week) can help cut down those long grocery trips, slash your dinner prep time way down and perk up your pocket book. Wrangle your cash back in with these hot tips.

    * Keep your pantry stocked. One of the best things about going meatless is that you can often create a meal based on what you already have. Some of my must-haves? Canned beans and lentils, diced tomatoes, healthy sauces, and whole-grains brown rice and quinoa for meals in minutes. You'd be amazed at how fast a can of chickpeas can transform into an impressive veggie curry.

    * Buy in bulk. This is one of the biggest money-saving tricks out there. Try hitting up the bulk bins at your grocery store for your favorite nuts, seeds, grains, beans and dried fruit. Since they're priced by weight, you get way more bang for your buck. Another perk? You're using way less packaging. How green of

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  • Style Updates for Shorter Hair

    by Alexandra Samuel

    photo: Delphine Achardphoto: Delphine AchardGuys. I did it. I finally took the haircut plunge and chopped off the eight inches of dead weight I was forcing into style submission every day. It's not the first time I've had short hair, and it's not the shortest it's ever been, but I completely forgot how different styling is when your mane isn't that long.

    Now that my hair is collar-bone length (instead of past my boobs) styling is totally faster and more efficient -- both in terms of the amount of product I use and the sheer decrease in volume of hair. But I also know that my former go-to looks -- the chunky fishtail, salty beachy waves -- don't really work the same way. So, I've pulled together my four most important style must-knows for shorter hair. Just in case you decide to beat the heat and chop it all off, too.

    See more: 2013 Best Healthy Beauty Buys

    Cut (way) down on conditioner: Pre-cut, my hair was dead. I would squeeze a disgusting amount of conditioner out (like...almost my entire palm's-worth),

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  • Celeb Hair Lesson: Transform Your Look Without Making a Huge Commitment to a New Style

    by Nicole Cantanese

    FilmMagic/Getty Images; Michel DuFour/Getty Images; Getty ImagesFilmMagic/Getty Images; Michel DuFour/Getty Images; Getty ImagesYour new style: the low side part. It's the fastest way to transform your look without a cut. Plus, the eye graze: so sexy!

    See more: 2013 Best Healthy Beauty Buys

    Ace the base: For maximum impact, start with sleek but not flat hair, says Andy LeCompte, Wella Professionals celeb hairstylist in Los Angeles. Comb a dollop of thickening mousse (we love Bumble and Bumble Thickening Full Form Mousse, $29) through damp strands. Blow-dry smooth with a round brush.

    Pick a part: Using a skinny comb, create your part at least 1 inch to the left or right of the center of your forehead‚ but no farther than the outer edge of your eyebrow.

    See more: 6 Moves To Resize Your Butt and Thighs

    Hold it tight: Temporarily clip fuller side behind ear, then aim blow-dryer heat on part for one minute to set. Flatiron front pieces (try GHD Limited Edition Candy Collection 1" Styler, $199); add shine serum like Dove Nourishing Oil Care Anti-Frizz Serum, $6.

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  • How to Get Hailee Steinfeld's Wild Comic-Con Mani

    by Alexandra Samuel

    Getty ImagesGetty Images Comic-Con is many things: A geek's paradise, a movie's unveiling, and, of course, a representation of the coolest casual-chic fashion around, modeled by stars, of course. But while buzz centered around things like Lily Collins and her new flick, I was majorly focused on something else: Hailee Steinfeld's seriously on-theme manicure.

    But, just like CosPlay, NailArt can be totally scary -- or daunting at best. And finally, after a week of playing, I figured out the best way to copy the comic-inspired pattern on Steinfeld's tips, who attended to promote her new movie Ender's Game. And, unless you've got, like, an entire Saturday to do this, stick to the design on her pointer finger and use it as an accent nail amidst a pure white mani.

    See more: 6 Moves To Resize Your Butt and Thighs

    * Brow and/or Sewing Scissors
    * Scotch Tape
    * White, Yellow and Red Nail Polishes (ORLY has a great color range)
    * Black and Blue Nail Art Pen (I love the ones

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  • No Diet Self-Control? Look at or Smell Some Fruit, Says a New Study

    by Amanda MacMillan

    Getty ImagesGetty Images In a study released this morning, British researchers say that looking at, smelling, or actually eating healthy foods (like whole fruit or a salad) can help dieters stay on track when they're hungry. And not just because they're low-cal; but also because they remind us of our commitment to good health and nutrition. Basically? Big news that's not crazy surprising, but we love it.

    But let me back up for a minute: This research I speak of is actually three separate studies from the University of Leeds, presented together yesterday at the Annual Meeting of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior. In the first study, women smelled either fresh orange slices or pieces of chocolate, and later were allowed to eat whatever they wanted. Those women who were currently dieting and who had smelled oranges ate 60 percent fewer sweets than those who had smelled chocolate. (The ladies who weren't dieting ate about the same amount, regardless of what scent they'd

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  • The Best Beauty Products Made for Tots, but Approved for Adults

    by Alexandra Samuel

    You guys, the royal baby is so freaking cute. And then there's Jimmy Fallon's newborn daughter, the adorable Winnie Rose. Oh, and did you know Penelope Cruz had her second child last week? Anyway, all this baby talk got me thinking about my baby beauty booty. Because I know, I know, I always say I love baby stuff because my skin is super sensitive, but there are awesome products made for tots that work for adults no matter what your skin type may be. Why bother? Because being super rough on your skin can cause all kinds of problems (wrinkles, redness), and everyone's skin could use just a little extra coddling. Here are some of my young faves for all kinds of big girls.

    If you've got crazy-dry skin, try Orico London Little Love Organic Baby Balm. I've mentioned this stuff before, but I stand by it as my favorite face cream to this day. It's meant for babies' bums, but the shea butter and sunflower seed oil absorb into skin super quickly. Plus, it's got nerouli oil

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  • New Study Links Poor Sleep to Full Moon

    by Amanda MacMillan

    It may sound like something out of a Twilight novel, but scientists in Switzerland are reporting that our sleep patterns can be affected by lunar cycles -- and that tossing and turning on nights when there's a full moon might not be a mere coincidence.

    The story goes that lots of people tend to complain about poor sleep on or around the nights when there's a full moon. And sure, it makes sense that it had been suggested that brighter skies at night might lead to less shuteye. But in modern times -- with our comfy beds and climate-controlled environments and curtains that block out light -- the scientific community had little reason to believe that something like the moon could really still affect sleep patterns profoundly.

    See more: 2013 Best Healthy Beauty Buys

    But chronobiology researchers at the University of Basel wanted to see if there was anything to the notion that a brighter moon would mean poorer sleep. So the scientists monitored overnight brain

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