Blog Posts by Liz Brody

  • 11 Famous Love Wrecks—Would you date them?

    I wish we had a Kelly Blue Book for dating used partners. Like, say, a famous single guy, who's been married eight times. Is he a lemon-or could he, with right new driver, go the distance? How about one who cheats on his-terminally ill wife in front of the entire country, then denies the love child? Or a high-powered career woman who, after getting dumped by her lover, snaps-and gives Fatal Attraction's Glenn Close a run for her bunny?



    Would you-and should you-go out with these people?



    Don't be fooled by the "endowment effect," warns sexologist and couples counselor Eric Marlowe Garrison. He's referring to an economic principle that, when applied to romance, means you can't judge a guy by how much the last gal stuck by him. "People tend to over-value a relationship when they're in it. But to you, the guy could have serious flaws."



    Let's look at a few famous cases:





    For more dating hazards..


    The 6 Men You Shouldn't Date


    Lessons in Going Out with a Male Stripper


    Signs You're

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  • Double Your Burn with This Fitness Tool (hint: check your closet)


    Wake up, Ladies. May I introduce you to your new personal trainer? He's a softee. He'll wipe the sweat off your brow. You can take him to the beach. And you don't have to pay him a penny.

    Meet your trusty towel.

    Beach, hand or, tea-pick your towel. "It's a great piece of workout equipment, says Bally Total Fitness pro, Seven Boggs. "When I'm training someone and don't have weights available, I'll create resistance by pushing against her body as she exercises. With a towel, you can do this for yourself."

    Check out Seven's push-me-pull-you routine. There are only 3 moves, but because each one involves a tug of war with the towel, you get twice the burn. And while working you from head to toe, your terry trainer will also deepen the stretches for long and limber muscles.





    Trainer in a Towel - Arms, Legs, Abs
    Try each move, do the recommended reps, and go onto the next. When you're finished, start from the beginning again, for a total of three sets. Add a 30-minute jog or brisk walk

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  • Heartache—Who Suffers more, Guys or Girls?

    In fiction, men turn themselves inside out for love-from F. Scott Fitzgerald's Jay Gatsby reinventing his life to get Daisy back, to even a bad boy like Chuck Bass angling for Blair after three seasons of Gossip Girl.

    But in real life, isn't it the women who most acutely feel the whiplash of relationship turmoil? We lose sleep over fights (he snores). We anguish at his failure to remember an anniversary. We watch Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf to remind ourselves that, "There but for the grace of God," and cook up revenge plans should he dare to dump us (at least I do.)

    So I was interested to see a new study, published this month in the Journal of Health and Social Behavior, which suggests that guys are a lot more sensitive than we might think. Analyzing the mental health of 1,611 unmarried subjects between ages 18 and 23, researchers found that, while women predictably get more depressed after a breakup, men outdo us in riding the highs and suffering the lows of the romantic roller

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  • 4 Ways to Rock the Dating Sites! Take our Survey

    What's with this guy? He doesn't care where I grew up, or that I run a mile a day and am often mistaken for Megan Fox.

    Sorry, scratch the Megan Fox*. Every guy cares about La Fox. Let's try, "Brooklyn, runner, loves Hawaiian slack key guitar." But no, Dan, my online date, could give a hoot.

    "Why did you break up with your last partner," he asks? "Do you have, any STDS? How many people have you slept with? Are you more Monty Python or Jon Stewart? What's your ideal age of marriage."

    Geeze, Mr. ...

    Ariely is his actual name, Dan Ariely. He's a professor at Duke University with PhDs in both cognitive psychology and business administration, who's explaining his latest research on Internet dating. Much of it is published in his new book, The Upside of Irrationality: The unexpected benefits of defying logic at work and at home. And because he's curious about your luck in netting love on the net, he's agreed to do a special research project just for Shine. But first:

    Why Online Dating is

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  • Dance Your A** Off—Empowering or Insulting?




    Dear Producers,

    Let me start by saying that I am indebted to "Dance Your A** Off" for any scintilla of cool I might have. Who knew what Fierce Thwacking was? Or Booty Cranking? Or thrashing as a dance form? And how fabulous to watch full-figured bodies rocking the rhythm in ways that skinny boppers can't begin to touch. But there are a few things about the show I don't love.... [back in a minute with those.]

    The Recap

    If you haven't seen DYAO on Oxygen, it's basically The Biggest Loser meets Dancing With The Stars. Season 2, which just got underway, is hosted by Spice Girl Mel B, and features 12 contestants between 207 and 326 pounds living in a rambling Hollywood home that's kitted out from ballet barre to "cheats" pantry. On each episode the hopefuls rehearse, diet, and drench themselves in sweat at the gym, before dancing their hearts out in front of three judges and stepping on a giant illuminated scale. It's the combination of dance score and weight lost each week that decides

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  • Calorie Counts: Do labels lie? Or are we too obsessed?


    Susan Roberts is not your typical frustrated dieter.

    First of all, she's a professor of nutrition and a professor of psychiatry at Tufts University, who has been studying weight loss for almost 20 years. Secondly, she's the author of the immensely popular and scientifically praised The "i" Diet. As part of researching the book, and as a "weight challenged person" herself, she went on her own plan. It worked for the home-cooked menus. It didn't when she tried a second, more convenient version she was developing using calorie-equivalent packaged and restaurant foods.

    "I figured it was the sodium," she tells me from her lab, "but after a while, I thought, this isn't right." Instead of drowning her sorrows in something fudgy, she gathered up 39 of her favorite frozen diet meals and weight-friendly restaurant dishes, and threw them into her bomb calorimeter-a fancy machine that burns up grub just like your body and spits out an inarguably accurate calorie count.

    If "bomb" has

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  • Bikini Picnic—3 Ways to Eat Healthy At The Beach

    Maybe it's the ions in salty ocean air. Or maybe it's the rhythmic slap of waves that hypnotizes us out of our usual vigilance. But something about hitting the beach and spreading your towel definitely sets off the hunger signals.


    The question is: What foods can you bring along that are melt-proof, healthy, energizing, and won't make one feel, at the end of the day, like giant sea creature who ate her way through the entire food chain.


    I asked nutritionist Marissa Lippert, RD, author of The Cheater's Diet, to help us out. I love her because she believes that eating well is about enjoying food, and (rather than obsessing about every little calorie), simply being intelligent about what goes into your mouth.

    Lippert offers three ways to eat for a day at the beach:

    Scenario One: Bring on the picnic

    "Sandwiches can get soggy and make you feel overstuffed," Lippert says.
    "I prefer cold salads and fresh wraps." You'll need to prepare some of these lunches

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  • Do you need this sex pill?

    In her leopard-print shirt and plumped-up ottoman pout, soap star Lisa Rinna tells CBS news, "I lost my sex drive." It seems we now have our own female Bob Dole.

    If you've never heard of hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD), check out a site called Sex Brain Body, where Rinna is featured. You'll learn that while the cause of low libido is unknown, the brain's neurotransmitters are thought to play a role. You have to read the fine print to make out the astroturfing ("with the support of sponsorship from Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals.") What's interesting is how this sex- brain-body campaign (also check out the Discovery Channel's series on female sexual dysfunction) is being rolled out before the star is born. That would be the HSDD drug Boehringer Ingelhiem has developed for young women-it works on the brain-which will go before the FDA on June 18th for approval.

    I wouldn't have known anything about it, had I not gone to a screening of Orgasm Inc., a documentary about

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  • The 6 Keys to Winning at Weight Loss

    You know the weight-loss hookup? The one where you meet a hot diet, drop a jeans size, fall madly in love with your new body... and then, before you know it, wake up heavy-hearted, and just plain heavy-even more so than before?

    It's a funny thing, but scientists are discovering that weight loss is a lot like marriage: To succeed, you've got to commit to a long-term relationship with a healthy lifestyle, avoid cheating, and hang on to whatever on earth made you get involved in the first place (let's not think about Al and Tipper right now). Experts talk about "motivation," but what is that? And how, if you're not Maria Sharapova, do you get your hands on some?

    It's not about the bikini: You, rocking a sexy little suit, might be the vision that gets you off to Spinning class, but it probably won't keep you going through bad cramps and work problems, according to new research by Kelly Webber, PhD, assistant professor at the University of Kentucky's department of nutrition and food

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  • "SJP Loves This Workout." Try It!


    Sorry, ladies, no python heels. They'll puncture the equipment.

    Sarah Jessica Parker de-fanged her feet to do this workout-which is why we asked her trainer to give us a few killer-body moves. He calls it Powerball. I prefer Flex and the City. Either way, you needn't be urban to try it; like SATC 2, it travels nicely to the beach.

    "I worked with SJP once or twice a week during the summer before the first movie," says Marc Santa Maria, regional director of group fitness for Crunch gyms. "Sometimes she'd bring a couple of girlfriends with her. That was fun, because I'd have them work out with each other and I could see how she really was with them." (No, she didn't train with her on-screen GFs, but Santa Maria says, "One Saturday, I was teaching another class. For some reason, nobody is listening to me. And all of a sudden, I realize there's Mr. Big at the back of the room. It was a totally random thing.")


    SJP worked out with a Bosu Ballast ball, which has sand-like material inside

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