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Since January we’ve been bombarded with ads urging us to slim down and “get your body in shape by summer.” While some women manage to meet their weight loss goals in time to feel confident in their swimsuit, the majority of us do not.  We can often disguise unwanted pounds under heavy layers during winter; yet, our summer wardrobes are rather unforgiving. We turned to Dr. Sanam Hafeez, a New York City=based neuropsychologist and Teaching Faculty Member at the prestigious Columbia University Teacher’s College, to give us some tips on how to boost body image despite the number on the scale.

RECOGNIZE (AND STOP) THE “FAT TALK”  “Women are notorious for commiserating when it comes to body image,” says Dr. Hafeez. “If a woman says, ‘I’m so fat,’ the other woman might feel like she has to say ‘no, I’m the fat one.’ ‘Have you seen my thighs?’”
Then there’s this back and forth over whose body is worse to elevate the other person. “Even women who don’t feel negatively about their bodies will engage in this behavior and eventually, it can make them feel worse,” says Dr. Hafeez. Dr. Hafeez suggests taking the lead in offering compliments to friends and steering the conversation away from negative self-talk which serves no one.

DO NOT COMPARE YOURSELF TO THE “INSTA THIN”  Comparing your “booty” or thighs to the countless fitness influencers on Instagram will do nothing to bolster your self-image. Instead, follow and like beautiful photos of healthy foods, plated and perfect. “You want to encourage well-being not get yourself down by comparing yourself to women who work out with trainers, are significantly younger and whose livelihood it is to be a swimsuit model. Comparison leads to discouragement,” warns Hafeez.

FOCUS ON IMPROVEMENT   When it comes to your body, focusing on what you think is a problem area is just going to make you feel worse. Once you’ve acknowledged what you want to work on, focus on ways to improve and celebrate what you’ve accomplished so far. “If you haven’t reached your fitness goal understand it is a work in progress. Stick with it. Working out will also raise your endorphins which help to induce feelings of pleasure and reduce anxiety naturally,” says Dr. Hafeez. Read more of this story »

BEATING SWIMSUIT SEASON ANXIETY!


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Now that summer is here, many of us are enjoying the sunshine and warm weather. Excessive perspiration, or hyperhidrosis, is an issue that afflicts a large segment of the population and can stem from a variety of underlying triggers. Though it may seem trivial, it can cause stained clothing, physical discomfort, and social embarrassment. While deodorant might be an obvious fix, but this household staple is primarily filled with toxins such as parabens, propylene glycol, and aluminum compounds. To remedy the burden of hyperhidrosis without the carcinogens, Dr. Christopher Calapai, D.O., a New York City Osteopathic Physician, suggests the following natural solutions to finally enjoy the warm weather in comfort.

Apply a Natural Astringent like Witch Hazel  Witch hazel, a common natural herb, is often found in liquid form as a skin toner. The same potent astringent properties which make it an effective toner also make it a great sweat-reducer. When topically applied, witch hazel acts as an antiperspirant by tightening the pores. Wet a cotton ball with witch hazel and apply to your most problematic areas. Other natural astringents include black tea, tea tree oil, and apple cider vinegar.

Supplement with B-Vitamins and Vitamin D  Excessive perspiration may very well be a sign of an unhealthy endocrine system. To restore hormonal imbalances to optimal levels, B-vitamins will often do the trick. Additionally, Vitamin D is an essential element of hormonal regulation; nearly half of Americans are deficient in Vitamin D!

Transition from Processed Foods to Natural Ones  Though highly processed foods may be practical and cheap, they are packed with toxic substances like artificial preservatives, colors, and flavors, and they are very hard for the body to digest. As your body tries to rid itself of these toxins and break down such unnatural foods, it has to work in overdrive, thus producing more sweat. Instead of going for pre-packaged or fast food, especially those high in fat, opt for fruits, vegetables, nuts, organic poultry or meat, and wild-caught seafood. Read more of this story »

NATURAL WAYS TO AVOID EXCESS PERSPIRATION!


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While the sun, pool days and warmer temperatures are often a welcome change come summer, they can be brutal on your hair. It’s important to give your locks some extra love this season.  “The sun, sweat and chlorine can fade color fast. Make sure you have the right products to protect your hair,” said Heather Brodzin, director of salon and spa with Beauty Brands.  “Whether it’s styling aids, hair protectants, a smoother or moisturizer, make sure you consider your scalp and hair type for a tailored solution.”

Don’t Get Too Long-Winded  Don’t forget to schedule a trim with your stylist every 6-8 weeks to keep split ends at bay, or a deep conditioning treatment that gives your hair that extra boost of protection and moisture it needs. “A little preparation and regular salon visits can help keep you looking and feeling your best all summer long,” shares Brozdin.

Get Relief from the Heat  Guard your hair against styling tools as well as summer’s ultraviolet rays and humidity with the 24-hour protection offered by a weightless spray like Living Proof Restore Instant Protection. Mist it on before styling and re-apply as needed, or use it as a finishing aid for shine and smoothing.

Extend Your Summer Style  Spend more time outside enjoying the summer sun and less time cooped up indoors styling your hair with dry shampoo like TIGI Bed Head Oh Bee Hive! Matte Dry Shampoo, which creates volume and texture without a lot of work. Read more of this story »

HEALTHY SUMMER HAIR CARE