• by Lexi Petronis

    photo: Giovanni Giannoniphoto: Giovanni Giannoni

    If "feel happy" is on your to-do list (it's on mine!), it looks like there's yet another reason to do the Happiness Challenge.

    A new study found that older adults who reported feelings of happiness and contentment were fitter than those who didn't. They walked faster than their less-happy peers, and their rates for developing physical impairments that affected their daily activities-such as getting dressed or getting in and out of bed--were much lower. In fact, the participants who said they were unhappy were more than three times as likely to develop physical problems as they aged.

    See more: 13 Sneaky Habits That Can Cause Acne

    A previous study discovered that happy people were 35 percent less likely to die compared with those who were unhappy--maybe because feelings of happiness have also been linked to fewer strokes and heart attacks. Other studies have pointed out that happiness may help give your immune system a boost, thanks to the release of fewer

    Read More »from Want Another Reason to Get Happy? Here's a Good One: It Can Help Make You Fit
  • By: K. Aleisha Fetters

    Mike LorrigMike Lorrig

    The QUESTION:
    As far as health goes, salt has a notoriously bad reputation. But is sea salt any better (or at least less bad) than run-of-the-mill table salt?

    The EXPERT:
    Pamela Peeke, MD, MPH, FACP, nutritionist at Elements Behavioral Health and author of The Hunger Fix

    The VERDICT:
    The answer isn't as cut-and-dry as most chefs might like, but that's because the path every salt (even if it's the same "kind") takes to reach your shaker varies.

    First off, sea salt is produced by evaporating water from the ocean or saltwater lakes, whereas table salt is usually mined from underground salt deposits. While the exact body of water or deposit can influence the concentration of certain minerals, it doesn't affect sodium. However, the larger the salt crystals, the fewer that fit in a given volume-be it a pinch, teaspoon, or your entire salt cellar-which could influence how much you end up dishing out.

    Rough or Refined?

    What really makes

    Read More »from Health Myth: is Sea Salt Healthier Than Table Salt?
  • by Lexi Petronis

    Jeff LipskyJeff Lipsky
    Well! I do a lot of reading and researching when it comes to diets--and I have to say that this is one I'd never heard of before. Gabrielle Union told Conan O'Brien that her inspiration at the gym happens to be adult film stars, on whom she spies to pick up exercise and eating tips! She says she watches what kinds of workouts they do, then she starts competing with them--secretly, that is. She also follows them to the gym's juice bar to see what they're ordering.


    See more: 13 Sneaky Habits That Can Cause Acne

    OK, as I'm writing this all out, it sounds a bit creepier on Gabrielle's part than it actually is. Seriously--watch.

    Now that I think about it, I have definitely done some secret workout competitions at the gym, but usually with whomever happens to be on the treadmill next to mine (it is unconfirmed that any of them have been porn stars). Usually, I'll just try to go a bit longer or faster than maybe I would have normally--hey, motivation is motivation!


    Read More »from Gabrielle Union is on A...Porn Diet?!
  • Well, this means there's a positive side to all this freezing weather!We already know that sitting at our desks all day every day is doing us a big disservice when it comes to our weight loss goals. Seriously-how many people can actually say they get in 10,000 or more steps on an average workday? Studies have even shown that sitting for more than three hours per day can cut your life short. And now, a surprising January 2014 study gives us another reason to get up out of our cozy office chairs and venture outside-especially when it's cold.

    MORE: Should You Ditch Your Antiperspirant?

    According to researchers writing in the Cell Press publication Trends in Endocrinology & Metabolism, the warm indoor environments in which we spend most of our time could be partially to blame for our expanding waistlines. One of the article's authors, Wouter van Marken Lichtenbelt of Maastricht University Medical Center in The Netherlands, says that considering how much time we spend indoors, he and his team thought it was worth exploring how the thermostat-controlled

    Read More »from You Might Literally Be Freezing Your Butt Off Right Now
  • Courtesy of Getty ImagesCourtesy of Getty ImagesBy K. Aleisha Fetters

    Friendly competition is one thing, but these Olympic-grade, tabloid-worthy rivalries take things to a whole new level.

    Related: Olympic Hopefuls to Watch This Winter

    Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding
    The Rivalry: Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding had skated together on the U.S. team for years, but it was obvious each wanted gold, especially as time progressed and Harding's career became marked by increasingly more blunders -- typically involving a wardrobe malfunction that would stop her mid-performance.

    The Tipping Point: At the U.S. Figure Skating Championships, which was held less than two months before the Winter Games, an attacker clubbed Kerrigan's knee in the women's locker room with a metal baton, preventing her from skating. It turned out the attack had been planned by Harding's ex-husband and her bodyguard. Kerrigan, who had largely recovered by the Games, finished second. Harding, who was inexplicably allowed to compete, fell during her routine and missed

    Read More »from The Top 7 Olympic Rivalries
  • Refinery29By Justin Sedor, Refinery29

    For years, we've been hearing that diet soda gives you cancer. Aspartame, the calorie-free artificial sweetener used in most diet drinks, was long thought to be a carcinogen, a theory that was used by many health advocates to scare us all out of our Diet Coke habits. It didn't work, of course - and, anyway, just last month, European health officials published findings suggesting that aspartame is perfectly safe for human consumption. Millions of diet-soda fiends rejoiced and all was well in the low-cal kingdom.

    RELATED: Could This Household Item Save You From Cancer?

    Well, with another day comes another scary warning about diet soda. Recent testing by Consumer Reports suggests that the artificial caramel coloring used in many diet sodas could contain unsafe levels of a chemical by-product that many experts believe to be carcinogenic. It's called 4-methylimidazole, or 4-Mel, and was found in high levels in a number of diet-soda samples bought in

    Read More »from Diet Soda May Contain yet Another Carcinogen
  • By Farhana Nazir, Refinery29 Years_Spent_At_Your_Desk There's nothing worse than those days when there never seems to be a moment to step away from your desk (who has time to pee, let along take a walk to grab some lunch). But, while all work and no play can make Jane a very dull girl, it might also be causing her some serious health problems. A recent article in The Washington Post chronicles in careful detail the negative effects of sitting for nearly eight hours a day (which is exactly how long the average American spends seated).

    Four experts weighed in - and their list of ailments is long: Sitting for too long can increase your risk for heart disease, colon cancer, and poor circulation. And, that's just the beginning. Complaints of an inflexible spine, strained neck, and soft bones are common, along with reduced brain function, or "foggy" brain, limp glutes, and "mushy" abs (ugh).

    RELATED: The Dirty Truth About Calories

    Turns out, the Brits are no better at standing up and stepping away during

    Read More »from Sitting at Your Desk All Day Might Be Making You Sick
  • Your next pot of soup will be your tastiest yet.Your next pot of soup will be your tastiest yet.

    Chilly winter months call for the quintessential cozy dinner: soup. Make sure you're simmering up your most delicious and healthiest pot by avoiding these common mistakes.

    1. Boiling instead of simmering
    You want a small bubble or two to rise to the surface of the liquid every few seconds. More than that and your meat and vegetables will come out dry and overcooked.

    2. Not using enough salt
    Nothing is as crucial as seasoning correctly. Taste as you go. While you can use a recipe as a guideline, learn to trust your own tastebuds.

    Related: Oh No! These Foods Are Secretly Loaded With Salt

    3. Ignoring water
    Think you can't make a delicious soup because you don't have broth? Just use water instead. Trust me on this one. In fact, you're better off using water than an inferior broth loaded with sodium. Before you dump in a can or container of broth, taste it. If you wouldn't eat it as is, why would you want to add it your soup? You may even find you prefer soups made

    Read More »from The 7 Biggest Mistakes You Make Cooking Soup
  • Move from occasional buds to BFFs with advice from our relationship experts.Move from occasional buds to BFFs with advice from our relationship experts.

    1. Find the time
    Build a get-together into your schedule (join a committee or attend weekly yoga together), so you see each other regularly. "Then after class, get a smoothie or tea to spend quality time talking and sharing," says Shasta Nelson, CEO of GirlFriendCircles.com, a women's friendship matching site. Most women consider someone a friend after six to eight interactions -- about two months into the weekly fitness routine.

    2. Pump up the positive
    Vent sessions and heart-to-hearts are healthy, but in moderation. Compliment your friend on an accomplishment, try something new together, and take photos. "Powerhouse female friendships are relationships where women are cheering, supporting and both publicly and privately affirming each other," Nelson says.

    Related: 15 Celebrity BFFs We Can't Get Enough Of

    3. Use (don't abuse) social media
    Liking a pal's post or leaving her a quick note is a great way to remind a friend you're thinking of her, but don't let your

    Read More »from 6 Key Things Every Good Friend Should Do
  • Getty ImagesYou finally have a legitimate reason not to respond to a late-night email from your boss: According to a new study conducted by Michigan State University, people who use their phones for work-related purposes after 9 p.m. don't sleep that well and are less productive the following day.

    "We studied work-related phone calls, emails, and text messages because engaging in work before bed doesn't allow people to disengage from their day, unlike more relaxing activities like texting with a friend," lead study author Russell Johnson, an assistant professor of management, tells Yahoo Shine. "We chose to study 9 p.m. because studies show that most people fall asleep anywhere between 9 p.m. and 1 a.m."

    Interestingly, when compared to people who engaged in other stimulating activities, such as watching "excessive" amounts of television before bed (two hours of viewing or more), those who used their phones slept the worst. "Smartphones are the most disruptive gadgets because they're portable, so

    Read More »from Weird Reasons You Can't Sleep: Your Phone, Your Bra, Your Dinner

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