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  • 5 Ways to Cut Food Contamination in Your Kitchen

    ThinkstockThinkstockA reader recently asked me this: "What's the best way to wash my fruits and vegetables? You hear about so many different methods, and it's confusing."

    Great question, and one that I find that many of us take for granted-and we cannot afford to take food hygiene practices for granted.

    Why? Good food hygiene that you and I practice at home, every day, can have a significant impact on our public health. Yup, it's true. You and I can help prevent the spread of food-borne illnesses just by taking time to wash not only our hands, but also our fruits and vegetables.

    QUIZ: Are You An Emotional Eater?

    It's essential that we know how. This is a great example of the ripple effect: what you do in your kitchen affects all of those around you, and they in turn affect those around them, and so voila, before you know it, your everyday practices have affected the public health of untold individuals!

    So, let's get down and dirty. How do you actually keep your kitchen safe, and

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  • 10 Healthy Brown Bag Lunches for Kids & Adults

  • Do You Support Senator Claire McCaskill's Public Weight Loss Goal?

    Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill announced this week that she reached her weight loss goal of 50 pounds-a goal she had announced via Twitter back in May.

    Over the course of the five months, the Senator tweeted her progress, keeping her followers in the loop of her eating habits and fitness routine.

    McCaskill said that she chose to tweet her business as a way to hold herself accountable, saying: "I'm tired of looking and feeling fat. Maybe talking about it publicly will keep me on track."

    QUIZ: Are You Getting All the Nutrients You Need?

    Now here's the kicker...some websites and blogs are lambasting McCaskill for so-called preoccupation with a number on a scale, and they're critizing her for, as one website stated, putting "way too much emphasis on [weight] under the guise of getting fit.'"

    They're claiming that by publicly setting a weight loss goal, McCaskill is perpetuating society's constant public scrutiny of women's bodies and the pressure that women have

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  • Top 5 Expert-Approved Dating Tips

    ThinkstockThinkstockTake one step into your bookstore's dating advice section and you will learn every trick in the book for snagging a man and settling down before he even knows what hit him. Anyone who has actually tried those tips can tell you they come with more than a few broken promises, probably in no small part because most of the books are written by actresses, authors and comedians. But experts actually study dating-like, as a science-and they have their own dating advice to dish out.

    From specifics about what to do on the first date to secrets for upping your odds, dating experts share with you their top tips for finding love.

    QUIZ: What's Your Relationship Style?

    1) Talk about yourself half the time.

    Ever been on a date with someone who thinks his own fine self warrants a two-hour monologue? According to one study, on dates that go well, people talk about themselves about half the time, leaving plenty of open airwaves for their date to fill. On awkward dates, the balance shifts,

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  • Thinking of Chopping It Off? Hairstylist Guido Says You Should!

    Emma Watson shortly after her new cut.Joseph Chi LinAre you considering a short haircut? Here's what I have to say about that: Do it.

    I know it's a big leap, and women are often scared of doing something drastic with their hair. But if you have that feeling inside that you might want a change, that you want to go from long to short, I only encourage you to do it. I would never tell you to not do it.

    The shock of cutting of your hair can take a while to get used to. Yes, some women cut it and immediately love it and feel completely liberated. But if you're worried you won't be one of those women, don't let that be an excuse to keep you from taking a chance.

    GALLERY: Celebrities Who Went Short

    There can be a lot of doubt surrounding a drastic change, especially with a haircut, where you might feel like you can't go back. Trust me-after about a week it's like the old you is suddenly in the past.

    Psychologically that can be a great thing for a woman. It takes inner strength to go through with it, and I've noticed that

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  • The Most Important Factor in a Happy, Healthy Relationship

    ThinkstockThinkstockImagine that you're on your way to the airport. You've been in a cab for just twenty minutes when you get a text from your partner: "Did you get there okay? Will you call me when you land? I miss you already!" You ignore it, thinking, "Ugh, so needy. Didn't I just leave the house?"

    Or maybe you're the one sending the texts. You don't hear back and you think, "That's so inconsiderate! How much effort does it really take to text back? I shouldn't have to put up with this!" By the time you finally do get a call, you're ready to explode.

    Either of those sound familiar?

    Those are two examples of insecure attachment styles, and they represent a relationship dynamic that's all-too-familiar for many of us. But by recognizing your attachment style and tapping into a "secure mindset," you can improve your love life tenfold.

    QUIZ: What's Your Attachment Style?

    Know Your (and Your Partner's) Attachment Style

    How comfortable each of us feels with intimacy and independence

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  • How to Make Your Home Healthier

    ThinkstockThinkstockWhether your home's spotless or looks like a tornado hit it, there are plenty of places where germs can breed. Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen show you how to keep contamination to a minimum.

    The Kitchen
    Garbage disposal: A veritable whirlwind of bacteria sprays up each time the disposal is on, leaving a germ-heavy mist hanging over the kitchen. Make sure the disposal opening is properly covered before flipping the switch.

    Sponges and dishrags: These fertile breeding grounds contain more than 100,000 germs per square inch. Microwave wet sponges (not dry-they'll catch on fire!) for two minutes when they're particularly dirty. Ideally you'd do this every day to kill bacteria. You can also just use dishrags cleaned in a dilute bleach solution.

    Cutting board: Wood cutting boards are in fact safer than plastic. In one study, bacteria on a wooden board dried off in three minutes. Bacteria remained on the plastic board overnight, and multiplied. Wood appears to have a natural,

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  • Do We Vote for Attractive Candidates?

    ThinkstockThinkstock"Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the fairest one of all?" Turns out that's not just a classic fairy tale line, it's how many Americans are electing politicians.

    A study out of the Massachusetts Institute Of Technology (MIT) found that just like Disney villains, our political process could be suffering from an obsession with looks too. But the beauty factor runs deeper than just plain old being pretty. In this glossy media age, it seems candidates that look like a stereotypical successful politician have a better chance of becoming one.

    Past research has found that attractive or more capable-looking candidates fare better in elections. But in this case, the researchers dug in and found one possible influence.

    MORE: What Makes a Face Beautiful?

    The study uses data from 35 gubernatorial and 29 Senate races in 2006 correlated with the results of a survey measuring voter intent, general levels of political knowledge, and hours of television exposure.


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  • Do You Fess Up When You Mess Up? It Could Be Better for Mental Health

    ThinkstockThinkstockYou know that walkin'-on-air feeling when you've aced a test or delivered a slam-dunk presentation? You want to high-five every Tom, Dick and Harry who crosses your path and then some.

    But what happens when you got a C instead of an A, or missed the mark in your presentation? Do you say to yourself, "Hey, I still did a great job!" Or do you think, "Man, I really blew it."

    According to a new study published in the the APA journal Emotion, people who attempt to bolster self-esteem by telling themselves they did a good job-even when they didn't-actually end up experiencing symptoms of depression and dejection.

    "My studies showed that those who assessed their performance more positively than what it really was experienced higher depression, performed worse in school (e.g., lower GPA), engaged more in self-handicapping behavior and had lower achievement motivation, compared to those who assessed their performance accurately," said lead author Young-Hoon Kim, Ph.D., of the

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  • Plate Spinners: Are You Dating Some Who Strings You Along?

    ThinkstockThinkstockPlate spinning is defined as "a circus manipulation art where a person spins plates, bowls and other flat objects on poles, without them falling off."

    In intimate relationships, a plate spinner is a guy (or woman) who never actually commits to being in a relationship with you, but once he senses you're ready to move on, he swoops back into your life full of charm and empty promises just keep you around-or at least, on the backburner.

    In other words, he gives you a little push just so your emotions keep on spinning and your relationship doesn't come crashing to the ground (like a proverbial plate). Sound familiar?

    The Plate Spinner's M.O.

    Many of us have dated a plate spinner or know someone who has. They are the magicians of dating: They show up, blow your mind and then pull a disappearing act (nod if this sounds familiar).

    "If you go out on a couple of dates and it seems like it went well and then you get a text from him 10 days later that says, 'Hey, what's up?'

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