People trying to quit smoking can stifle cravings with a sip of milk. In a recent survey of smokers from Duke University, nearly 20 percent agreed that milk makes cigarettes taste bad. “Your brain can eventually connect the taste of milk with a decreased desire to smoke,” says lead researcher Joseph McClernon, PhD.
Swap in a blue tortilla for a white one. The benefit: fewer late-night hunger pangs. Scientists recently found that blue tortillas contain 20 percent more hunger-satisfying protein and 16 percent less blood-sugar-spiking starch than white ones.
Stress can make you do things that are bad for your health—such as eat an entire box of chocolate-dipped doughnuts. Researchers say anxiety creates a whacked-out connection between brain and belly, with the former ordering the latter to consume everything in sight. When you feel the need to eat in times of stress, try this …
Prevent colds and flu with a little laughter. Before work starts, enjoy a morning chuckle at some source of quick yucks. Research suggests that a moment of mirth increases the body’s secretion of immune-boosting growth hormones and endorphins.
Looking at a vase of fresh daisies, tulips, roses, or other cut flowers while eating your morning oatmeal may improve your mood. New research from Harvard University shows that even people who say they’re not “morning people” report feeling happier and more energetic after looking at flowers first thing in the a.m.
Taking your pulse is an easy way to check the overall health of your heart, says Kenneth Ellenbogen, MD, vice-chairman of cardiology at Virginia Commonwealth University’s Medical College of Virginia Hospitals in Richmond. To take your pulse, place the first two fingers of one hand lightly on the inside of the opposite wrist, just below …
Squeeze a lemon wedge into your iced or hot tea. The acidity can boost antioxidant concentrations in green tea by 20 percent, according to a study in the journal Food Chemistry. Researchers believe the same trick works with all kinds of tea.
Toss a handful of flaxseed into the blender the next time you make a smoothie. The oil from this grain will help keep your skin smooth, moist, and glowing. You can buy this omega-3–rich seed at supermarkets or health-food stores.
Avoid low-back pain on long car drives by tilting your rearview mirror up. Doing so will prevent you from slouching (which causes the pain) by forcing you to sit up straighter to see the cars behind.
Fold your pillow in half, then let go. If the pillow springs back, it’s in good shape. If it just lays there bent like a soggy potato chip, get rid of it. It’s not worthy of supporting your head and neck adequately while you sleep.