If Your Child Is Sitting Like This, Here’s Why You Need to Stop Them Now

My daughter’s just over a year old, so there’s really not much she’s doing “wrong” yet. (Trust me, like all of us, she’ll get there.) If she smacks our family pet, it’s less hostility and more that she doesn’t have full control of her arms. If she throws her food, it’s not an act of insubordination but just her method of communicating that she’s done eating. So, when a family member alerted me to something my child was doing that she needed to stop at once, I was taken aback. Especially because, at that particular moment, she wasn’t stealing her playmate’s toys or eating an expensive coaster as she’s sometimes known to do. She was just sitting there.

Turns out, the way she was sitting — with each leg splayed at her side, knees in front and feet behind, to form a “W” shape — was all kinds of bad.

According to a vast majority of physical therapists, there are several key reasons why:

W-sitting limits core strength because it gives kids a wider base of support. Because they don’t have to engage their abdominal or back muscles in this position, kids often prefer it to more challenging, tiring positions, like with legs in front, at their sides, or crisscrossed.
W-sitting causes muscle tightness, particularly in the legs and hips but also knees and ankles.
W-sitting aggravates neurological issues such as low muscle tone, which means when kids aren’t actively using their muscles, those muscles are floppier and softer and have a harder time holding their bodies upright.
What this all means, most therapists agree, is that prolonged W-sitting throughout childhood can lead to a delayed development in gross motor skills like coordination and balance. For those parents hoping to raise a star athlete, this position’s effect on postural muscles can also be cause for concern.

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Why do some kids sit like this? It’s by far the steadiest way for children of all ages to sit, and aside from that innate tendency to achieve the most stability, it’s also been attributed to time spent in infant carrier devices, like swings, bouncy seats, and car seats.

Seeing as my daughter had graduated from infancy, I was immediately concerned that the damage was already done. I had tried my best to limit her time in her baby swing and the oversize, overpriced ExerSaucer that I had bought under the assumption it was actually good for a baby’s development, but here she was, W-sitting at every turn. I had never noticed it until now.

What can be done? Well, the somewhat alarmist recommendation is to get them to stop doing it immediately — that, whenever you see your child W-sitting, you either physically move their legs into a suitable position (if they’re too young to understand) or tell them to do so.

So, with a watchful eye, I adjusted her legs every time she sat incorrectly, and my husband and I instructed our child’s caretakers to do the same. Occasionally I’d correct her, and it’d be fine, but plenty of times, adjusting one of her legs would make her cry and most times, doing so annoyed her to the point that she was no longer interested in sitting and scooted off to go do something else.

She wasn’t the only one getting fed up, and it had only been a week. I dug a little deeper and found that a few pediatric occupational therapists out there don’t view this seated position as a problem necessarily. There’s not much evidence that shows causation. That is, yes, children who W-sit often have orthopedic issues and muscle tightness. But W-sitting hasn’t been proven to be the cause of those issues, which makes one wonder: could tight hamstrings and hip dysplasia lead to W-sitting, not the other way around?

One such unconvinced therapist, Rachel Coley, happens to be the mother to a W-sitter and maintains it’s perfectly normal for kids to sit this way.

She notes that it’s a simple sign of flexibility and aids in fine motor control because you need to assume the most stable seated position possible when engaging in tasks that require “coordinated, controlled movements of the hands and fingers.” Coley also noted that, for babies in particular, W-sitting provides a convenient, “natural transition” from crawling or kneeling to sitting.

However, based on how strongly most certified therapists feel about W-sitting, I’m not taking any chances. I’m going to keep my eye on it, and I’ll encourage other parents who were unaware of this issue to do the same, especially if they have older kids showing some of the negative side effects. But, if my child is having the time of her life smacking two wooden blocks together, I’m not going to spoil the fun if she happens to be W-sitting.

8 Important Actions That Will Make You More Successful

Each day I see more and more chronically unproductive, unsuccessful and unhappy people and wonder why they choose to be miserable when they can take a few actions to become more successful. You will never know the true joy of happiness and success if you don’t admit that you chose the wrong path in life. There are many successful people who consider themselves unhappy and unsuccessful because they are not grateful for what they already have and they are stuck in their own negative thoughts, which prevent them from reaching their full potential. Stop living in misery, here are 8 important actions you can take today that will make you more successful.

1. Love your job

Successful people always do what they love and this actually makes them so happy and successful. Spending 8 (or more) hours at work you don’t like is one of the worst things you can do in life. When you love your job, you are more productive and eager to reach success. Never stop looking for your favorite job and you will definitely find it.

2. Cultivate your creativity
Just don’t tell me that you are not creative. I believe every person in the world is creative, but the problem is that most of us don’t explore and cultivate that creativity. If you have any creative ideas, share them with your coworkers or boss. Even if they don’t love your ideas, don’t give up. Learn how to think outside the box, cultivate your creativity daily, train your brain and be open to new ideas. It’s one of the most important actions that will make you more successful.

3. Focus on one goal at a time
Multitasking is a common thing these days. Whether it’s good or bad, but it will get you nowhere. Trying to reach a few goals or accomplishing a few tasks at once will never make you successful. You will end up feeling overwhelmed, exhausted, and stressed out. When you have a huge to-do list, take a deep breath to calm down (when I see a long list of tasks I should accomplish, the first thing I usually feel is panic), prioritize your tasks and focus on accomplishing one task at a time. This will help you stay productive, avoid stress and meet all your deadlines.

4. Believe in yourself
No matter what you do, believe in yourself. If you made a mistake, admit it, learn from it and move on. Don’t dwell on your past mistakes. Believe that you will be successful, happy and healthy. Believe that you can make your dreams come true. Faith is a crucial part of life, remember it.

5. Ignore negative criticism
There’s a huge difference between negative criticism and constructive criticism. When you see that people give negative and rude criticism that has no sense at all, ignore it. We can’t avoid toxic people in the workplace, but we can ignore their rude comments. Don’t let people’s negative criticism affect your mood, productivity and success.

6. Never stop learning
The majority of people stop learning once they graduate from college or university. Highly successful people never stop learning, no matter the age. You may know a lot of useful things and have fantastic abilities, but they won’t make you more successful. Don’t be afraid to try new things and take new responsibilities. Read books and share your knowledge with others.

7. Don’t lie
If you don’t have fantastic computer skills, let your potential employer know about it. If you can’t accomplish a project, let your manager or boss know about it. Be honest and ask for help when you really need it. It’s impossible to know everything in life, so it’s okay when someone helps you. Successful people can’t do many things, they admit it and their honesty help them reach the true joy of success.

8. Take care of your health
Wealth is nothing without health. When you have numerous health issues, it’s hard to enjoy your success. You should never forget to take care of your health. Eat healthy, exercise regularly, get enough sleep and stay hydrated to be more productive and have more energy to accomplish any project and achieve any goal.

I hope these tiny pieces of advice inspired you to take some actions to improve your life and reach the true joy of success. Stay motivated and productive during the day, learn and try new things, believe in yourself and you will never feel unhappy again. What actions are you going to take to become more successful?

7 Signs You’re Sabotaging Your Career

Family is an integral part of each person’s life, but we pay too much attention to our jobs so we can consider career to be an integral part of life as well. They say, only selfish people worry about career, but in fact, many of us are trying to make a career as we need money to live a more fulfilling life. It’s not all about money, though. When you hate your job, you are not happy for that paycheck. Even if you love what you do, sometimes it seems impossible to get a promotion or a raise. Why? Here’s how you are sabotaging your career:

1. Perfectionism

Striving for perfection is one of the worst habits that can ruin your whole life. No matter how hard you work, you will never do your job perfectly. There’s always a room for mistakes. Perfectionists are ready to die rather than make a mistake, and it’s actually a surefire way to make your life more fearful, stressful and miserable. Don’t be afraid to admit your mistakes – those mistakes make you wiser, smarter and stronger. Moreover, stop setting the high standards and striving to be perfect. This way, you will boost your career and improve your love life as well.

2. Stop learning
You graduated from the university and you’re probably sick and tired of reading and studying, but a successful life is all about improving your knowledge and develop yourself. Don’t expect your boss to promote your professional development. It may be their obligation, but bosses are different so your employer may not even think about you, especially if you work for a big company. Consider improving your professional skills on a daily basis – the more you read, the better. You can also take some free courses or visit a few seminars.

3. Weak willpower
No one is able to reach career goals if they are not assertive and have no willpower. If your boss gives you a difficult project, it doesn’t mean they hate you. This means they believe in you and your skills and they know you will do your job well. If you can’t accomplish the task, let your boss know. Although they’ll probably won’t be happy to hear that, they’ll understand you and your situation. If you are afraid to fail the project, though, saying ‘no’ to your boss is a bad idea.

4. Working too much
Yup, ladies, working too much is not always good. Not only will you have a number of serious issues in a few years, you will also break your productivity, fail at time management and ruin your career. Hard-working people often sabotage their careers without realizing it, thus they end up feeling miserable and lonely. Work hard but don’t overwork – this is the main rule to keep in mind when you want to get promoted.

5. Saying ‘yes’
Your coworker has an urgent family problem to solve and asks you to accomplish some tasks. You have your own to-do list full of important tasks but you can’t say ‘no’ so you say ‘yes’ and end up working all night long doing the job for two. What’s the point? Well, I know, the art of being selfish is hard to master, but it will help you achieve your career goals without sacrificing your time and health.

6. The wrong career path
It’s hard to know if your career path is right or wrong, especially now when people are so obsessed with money that they are ready to do whatever job needed to be done in order to make more cash. True happiness doesn’t lie in money. If you make a lot of money by doing the job you hate, your chances of becoming happy are very low. If you feel like you chose the wrong career path, it’s not too late to change it.

7. Stressful life
Stress doesn’t sound like a big danger to us these days. Most hard-working people don’t know how to relax properly and they often have poor physical and mental health. As you know, money doesn’t buy health. Consider your lifestyle and think of all the possible ways to eliminate stress from your life. Learn how to cope with your emotions, negative feedback, toxic people and the most difficult life issues. Positivity can help you boost your career, while negativity can completely ruin it.

I learned the hard way about choosing the right career path and developing the right career habits. If you don’t find your job rewarding and meaningful, it’s better to leave it and find something you are passionate about. Hopefully, these little signs and tips helped you to think over your career path and your career goals, and now you know what you want to do. Are you sabotaging your career? How?

Why You Have to Stop Checking Your Email Over the Weekend

A few years ago I was on a group holiday, sailing around The Cyclades. One of our group was worried constantly about her phone battery running flat in case she missed an important email. This was even though she was on annual leave, and even with her ‘out of office’ responder on, and other people in the office who could cover.

This is the world so many of us live in now. We feel so much responsibility for our jobs that the term ‘full-time’ has become rather too literal.

While we can blame the society for some of this, there is also a degree of responsibility at our own door too. We allow the boundaries to get blurred. But you know what? We can stop it too. It just takes a little perspective shift.

The Weekend Email Checking Habit Is Harming You
Realize your problem
For many people, this comes in the form of a little existential awakening. For me, it was a sudden bout of depression. For other people I know they have developed different health problems, or even completely burned themselves out. Never allowing yourself a day off will do that.

The good news is that you do not have to wait to start feeling unwell before you take action and set yourself some boundaries. I hope that reading this will remind you to carve some ‘you time’ into your schedule, and just enjoy your free time a little.

Have you smelt the flowers lately?
Whether you spend your downtime sailing around The Cyclades or standing ankle-deep in mud on the side of a rugby pitch, your free time is your own.

When you look around you, there is always something to appreciate. Sunshine, birds singing, or in the case of the rugby pitch, that hot cup of coffee that is keeping you alive.

But whatever that thing is for you, there is something life affirming about enjoying the little things. And even more so when you can do this without intrusive thoughts of work. Honestly, that stuff can wait until Monday.

Let your brain reboot
If you need a bigger reason to rest, then how about letting your brain reboot?Studies show that we learn better when we are well rested. Our brain encodes new information while we sleep, but if we are too busy and over-tired, we retain very little new information.

When the weekend comes, put your phone on silent and just chill out. Scientists say that it is good for you.

A break boosts your mood
When we do not let ourselves stop working, eventually we get cranky. It happens to the best of us.

When Monday morning comes around, you want to start the new week feeling positive and ready to go. If you have been dipping in and out of work emails all weekend, you will not have had a proper break, so you will not feel rested and ready to go.

You know that expression, “It is for the greater good.”

Well, I think that really applies here. No matter how much you have on your plate at work. And no matter how many things will be in your inbox on Monday. Come at it when you are rested, and you will handle it better.

You might feel like you can’t afford any time off. But if you get over-tired, then your work productivity will slow down. So overall, taking the weekends off is for the greater good.

Whenever your next day off comes, remember to enjoy it!

4 Major Career Tips for Insecure Women

Too many women are of the generation that compares their outward appearance and inward psychology with those around them. Who looks better than you, who has a nicer apartment than you, or whose relationship their parents is better than yours is always on your mind.

When it comes to business, those same insecurities will follow you through the corporate ladder. Being insecure about your abilities as a professional can prevent you from breaking the glass ceiling.

Do not be a slave to the insecurities. Here are some great career tips to help you overcome your insecurities:

1. Figure out what causes your insecurities

Most of the time women will have developed insecurities during their childhood that has been hardwired into your brain. You might have been called fat or stupid at one point (or maybe multiple times), and now that weighs on you every single day.

Try to figure out where these insecurities first began, why you react to them the way you do, and then come up with a plan to counteract the negative effects. This can be as simple as thinking positive thoughts, journaling, or attending a counseling session.

2. Quit with the comparisons
Of course, as I mentioned earlier, almost everyone is guilty of comparing themselves to someone else. At the gym, at the office, in the grocery store, or outside walking down the road… there is always someone who catches your eye and you think, “Wouldn’t it be great if I was like them or had what they do?”

Stop right there. That is what is depressing you. Just because Carol managed to type up that report in under 10 minutes and was praised does not mean you are terrible. Just because Dean sealed a deal does not mean you can’t.

Stop worrying about what everyone is doing around you. Focus on your own success. Be your own mind. Live your own life.

3. Stop acting happy all the time
Perhaps you are the person who tries too hard to be the radiant ball of the sunshine in the office. Look, you might have been told to smile all the time to make customers happy, but that is not fooling anyone. No one is happy all of the time.

If you have a problem with something, you need to discuss it with management or HR. Further, if you have ideas about how something can be changed for the better, offer your opinion. Pretending that everything is okay when you’re screaming inside is only going to mentally exhaust you.

4. Find intrinsic motivation, not extrinsic
So many people stick with jobs for the money or the promise of rewards. Instead of focusing on finances, focus on how it makes you feel. When people do things for material gain, it is natural to get uncomfortable and feel unbalanced.

That is why you should never lie to yourself. If you really do not like where you are working, then you owe it to yourself to find something better.

Remember that you were chosen to do this job for a reason. You are not meant to simply become the office cubicle wallflower. Though everyone fears getting fired or never being promoted or not living up to expectations, you are not perfect.

Stop comparing yourself to the over achiever and just be the best person you can be by showing up on time, doing your best work, and following your gut instincts. Work for happiness, and if this workplace does not make you happy – then you should look for someplace that does.

7 Ways to Get Rid of Negativity in Your Life

A new day is a chance to change your life and get rid of negative vision of the world. However it’s quite difficult to stay positive, facing failures and harsh realities of life. Human mind has a tendency to remember negative points better than positive ones. We think over our problems too much and it doesn’t help to solve them but makes us more miserable. Remember that the power of thought is extremely influential, so try to avoid negative thoughts which steal your happiness.

1. Avoid people who spread negativity
There’s a type of people who think negatively and their vision of the world is a result of their lifestyle. Moreover, such personalities project negativity onto others. Sigmund Freud ones said a wonderful thing: “Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, first make sure you are not, in fact, just surrounded by idiots”. These are the words of a great psychologist. These people seem to have no power to control their thoughts and actions and pour the negativity of their rich and miserable fantasy on successful people to make them unhappy too. The first step to get rid of negativity is to drop the negative people in your life, but try to do it in a friendly way.

2. Don’t try to take overall control of everything
Nowadays many people want to reach perfection at least in something and it requires them to feel anxious about things they cannot control. It even happens that we are temporarily unable to reach our life goals and feel despondent and overfilled with fear. Don’t accentuate your attention on this fear and it will definitely go away. Enjoy the moments of life and other wonderful and magical things. Your fear and anxiety don’t influence the result of an action but make you suffer from these emotions. Try to be confident and don’t be afraid of the things you cannot control.

3. Exercise
It’s not a secret that sports and active lifestyle are an essential part of our mental and physical well-being. When you are busy with some exercises, your body produces endorphins which make you feel calm and happy. These hormones can even anesthetize and improve the circulation of blood in your body. I think it’s wonderful to feel alive and to be in harmony with your body. It’s proved that physical activity reduces the amount of negative thoughts in your mind. Make yourself better and healthier by exercising on a regular basis.

4. Pray/Meditation
Meditation or prayer is a way to activate your inner healing system. You calm your spirit down, becoming emotionally stable and physically strong. Moreover, it can help you perceive yourself better and become wiser. It’s an incredibly effective step to heal yourself and purify your conscience from negative thoughts and energies.

5. Learn to forgive
Resentment is a powerful tool that fulfills us with negative energy. We know that pride doesn’t allow us to forgive others and even ourselves. Our conscience is getting full of anger, sadness and bitterness. Such behavior forms a habit and it’s very difficult to feel yourself happy and free if you have a burden of negativity. Learn to forgive and don’t dwell on your mistakes. It’s the highest wisdom that can make you mentally rich.

6. Be a positive light
Do you know that our mood forms a person’s day? By all means, try to be special by your positive vision of the world and be the light that shines brightly. If we try to make another person happy, the whole world will be full of lucky people. Be positive, use your skills to help others in need, beam light and your life will change for the better in a short period of time.

7. Stop comparing yourself to others
The last step to let go of negativity is to reject false opinions of people around. As we know, tastes differ, so someone can find us not smart enough while others think we are not good and pretty enough. We are unique and we should know that we are deeply loved. Stop comparing yourself to others and always stay confident.

Remember that you are the blacksmith of your happiness, so it’s up to you to stop living in a dark and negative world, created by your own thoughts. We possess a great power to control our emotions. Have you ever tried to rid yourself of negativity? Please give your advice to help millions change their life!

5 Solar Eclipse Memes We Can’t Stop Laughing About

ICYMI, America basically hit pause yesterday to gaze up at the total solar eclipse, the first to sweep across the country from coast to coast in 99 years. Twitter buzzed with excitement about the once-in-a-lifetime experience, and Instagram nearly imploded with photos of onlookers sporting protective glasses.

But the celestial event of the century also left some wondering, “Was that…it?” And clever memes parodying the event (think puppies and doughnuts as stand-ins for the sun and moon) began to go viral. Whether or not you were among those suffering eclipse fatigue, we have a feeling these clips will make you LOL all the same. Here, five memes that were almost as entertaining as the eclipse itself.

“The only eclipse I care about tbh,” Twitter user @SweetK0518 captioned this snapshot of a chocolate doughnut covering a glazed one. #Priorities.

To eat clean (and save money!) this fall, sign up for the 21-Day Health Lunch Challenge

Be real, were you Beyoncé or Rihanna yesterday?

Creativity props to @AlexaBasauri, who cleverly pushed a Blue Moon in front of a bottle of Sol.

Friends fans will remember this moment from the sitcom, when Phoebe and Rachel found out Monica and Chandler were an item. Turns out Phoebe’s hysterical reaction to accidentally seeing the pair canoodling applies to those who peered at the eclipse without protective glasses. “MY EYES!”

10 Tips on How to Feel Happier During the Week

If something happened in your life that really upset you, or if your weekly routine seems to be lacking in some way, you need to know some ways to feel happier during the week. Don’t stay miserable until something happens to cheer you up, try these 10 best ways to feel happier during the week.

1. Get organized
An unmade bed, a dirty kitchen sink and a stack of papers can all cause stress. So take several minutes to reorganize your house, and start with making your bed in the morning and washing the dishes. It’s a happy feeling to know that you will come back to an organized and clean home rather than a messy and dirty one.

2. Subscribe to a daily laugh
Another great way to feel happier during the week is to subscribe to something that can supply you with everyday content that makes you laugh. For instance, subscribe to a blog that posts funny animal pics. When we laugh, we increase blood flow, bringing more oxygen and nutrients to our tissues and organs, and decrease stress hormones.

3. Play with your pet
Whether it is your pet or your friend’s pet, focus on them when you’re in a bad mood. Try to find time to play with your cat or dog, or offer to walk your friend’s or neighbor’s dog. It is really wonderful how pets can lift your spirit by just being themselves.

4. Bring fresh flowers into your home
Certain smells can actually change your mood and it’s difficult to feel upset or angry with a nose full of flowers. If you have a garden nearby or you have some extra money, bring some fresh beautiful flowers into your house. They are not only beautiful to look at, but also have a very nice aroma that will make you feel happier all over.

5. Exercise
Regular physical activity can also leave you feeling happier. But try to avoid the gym, since going from your office back inside under fluorescent lighting will not boost your mood. Go for a walk with your dog or around your block. Getting some fresh air is one of the best ways to feel good every day.

6. Compliment someone
I always feel happy when I compliment someone. I try to compliment someone at least once a day. Aim to compliment someone every day and you’ll feel really great about making someone else’s day a little happier. It will also leave you more open to getting some compliments yourself, which will help you feel much happier.

7. Paint your nails
It may sound strange, but I feel much better when I look down at my nails and see them polished to perfection. They make me feel prettier, and when I feel prettier, I definitely feel happier. Take some time out every week to relax at home and make a manicure. This is one of the best ways to feel happier during the week!

8. Write a diary
Writing out your problems can release some of the negative energies associated with them. Writing a diary has lots of benefits. Write about your daily activities and thoughts, or write about everything you like or did great that day. Writing out your problems and worries always helps.

9. Stop thinking and talking about your ex
There is nothing that may put me in a stressed out mood than thinking or talking about my exes, whether it’s venting to friends about them or coming across their Facebook pages. Sometimes thoughts of my exes tie to anger, stress, or depression, and I want to stay away from those feelings! So I do everything possible not to think about them. Stop thinking and talking about your exes. Stay away from their Facebook pages or avoid conversations that lead to them!

10. Avoid social network
Study from the University of Michigan psychologist Ethan Kross shows social network makes people more unhappy and lonely and less sociable. While social network provides an easy way for us to stay in touch with people from all over the world, it’s better to avoid it during the week. Stop checking your Facebook page 10 times a day and refreshing Instagram every 2 minutes. Instead of wasting your time on social network, go for a walk, exercise, read your favorite book, or spend some quality time with your family or friends.

Smile as much as you can and try to make the best of every day. Positive thinking is the key to happiness. What do you do during the week to make yourself feel happier? Share your tips with us, please.

20 Best Ways to Get Rid of Body Fat Fast

Getting rid of body fat fast can be a challenging task and many people believe it’s impossible, but there are some ways to make this process easier and more effective. These ways will help you reduce your body fat, tone your trouble areas and look your best. So, if you are curious to find out the best ways to reduce body fat really fast, keep on reading…

1. Drink tea
Tea is a wonderful drink that helps you relax and relieve stress. I’m not going to tell you that you should stop drinking coffee and start drinking only tea instead. If you want to lower your body fat fast, you may want to drink tea more often than usual. Try to drink tea as often as you can and you will notice excellent results. On the other hand, I try not to overdo with tea and I drink 3 to 4 cups per day. The best option is a green tea or white tea. They contain caffeine and antioxidants that help stimulate our metabolism, produce anti-inflammation effect and calm our nervous system. Scientists claim that green and white teas are rich in catechins which do all the job.

Sure, I combine drinking green tea with other tricks to promote fast fat-burning. I start every morning with a cup of green tea with mint. It gives me a burst of energy for the whole day. Plus, a cup of green or white tea before bed will guarantee you a sound sleep. In summer cold green tea with a slice of lemon is a one-shot remedy against heat. Don’t add any sugar. Choose cinnamon or stevia instead and enjoy this tasty and calming tea drinking.

2. Use lemon juice
This is a great way to lose weight and cleanse your body. Just add a small amount of lemon juice to your smoothie, tea, water, salads or even to the meat or fish dishes and you will get enough useful things. It’s rich in Vitamin C, and it gives you antioxidants and protects your immune system. You will improve the bloodstream and reduce body fat all at one time. Researches show that most of us fight fat because of poor digestion. As a result our body lacks necessary chemicals to burn fat. Moreover, we accumulate toxins which influence badly our spirit. Due to high concentrations of citric acid in lemons, they aid in digestion.

Moreover, a fresh lemon juice improves other ingredients’ tastes and adds its own delicious taste. I don’t use sunflower-seed oil in my salads because lemon juice is a better salad dressing. Moreover, lemons are easy to store. You can store them at room temperature up to 10 days and several months in the fridge. If you need lemon juice, keep it in ice cubes, as lemon doesn’t lose any of its nutrients when defrosted. I often add lemon peels to my green tea. They contain 5 to 10 times more essential vitamins than the lemon juice.

3. Start reading the labels
We all can read, but we don’t use this ability when we really need to do it. It’s not so hard to read a food label, isn’t it? When reading food labels, you might confused at first. But it’s important to devote some time to learn what all those strange words on food labels mean; otherwise you will be unable to control your diet and calories. When purchasing any food, don’t forget to check out its serving size. You will understand how many portions you eat and how many calories there are in one serving. Foods with caloric value up to 40 are low in calories, 100 is a moderate amount and more than 400 are high in calories. You should forget about the last group if you want to drop weight.

When buying foods, I also look at the amount of fats, sodium and cholesterol. I know that it should be as low as possible. Another thing I always check out is sugar. Even unprocessed sugars such as evaporated cane juice, organic cane juice, cane sugar, sucanat, organic sugar, maple syrup, agave and molasses are all sources of great amounts of sugar. In fact, they won’t help you reduce your body fat. They will actually make you crave more food. Finally, you can use labels to increase the amount of useful nutrients. Opt for foods that contain lots of vitamins, fiber and minerals.

4. Move
Forget about sofa, get up and move! Don’t let yourself be lazy, you need some movements. It’s really important for your metabolism and burning fat and calories. Just do something, even if you don’t have anything to do at home. It only looks this way and you may always find something to do. Wash something around you, turn off your computer and clean your desk. Get rid of some old clothes, clean your windows or get rid of dust. Household duties help to burn much more calories than we get used to think! You need to move more during the day in order to lower your body fat.

Forget about public transport or your car. A half-hour walk can help to get rid of nearly 300 calories! If you are always short of time in the morning and cannot afford such a stroll, try cycling. It possesses indisputable advantages such as physical activities, good muscles and no traffic jams. Another way I use to move more is staircases. I’m sure that your office building is well equipped with everything necessary including an elevator. But if you really want to burn calories, try to use stairs as often as possible. It may be a difficult and excessive task at first. However, your muscles will soon get used to constant movement, and this physical activity will bring you pleasure.

5. Weight training
Most women imagine mannish girls when they hear about weight trainings. However, it is one more stereotype I will try to break. It is a mere ignorance and excuse to skip training. If you want to reduce the body fat, just add some iron to your workouts and avoid doing only cardiovascular exercises. This way, you will burn calories and your body fat even when you are doing nothing. Sounds weird? Yes, it does, but it really works!

Don’t get frightened if you put on weight. Your muscle tissue is heavier than fat. Consider adding 12-18 strength repetitions to your workouts and repeat it 2-3 times a week with 2-3 sets. As a bonus, your body will continue burning fats during 24 hours after the training. Furthermore, numerous studies have proved that weight trainings help to get rid of deep belly fats, thus you will look gorgeous on the beach! Pay attention to each group of muscles for better results. Be sure, kettle-bells and weights can look very attractive in beautiful woman’s hands.

6. Hemp
We all know about whey protein and many people try to lose weight by using it. But I want to tell you that this is not a good way. I did it and all that I got were my big butt and big thighs. Moreover, I always wanted to eat something with sugar, and I was really addicted. As a result, it affected my glycemic index. Then I tried to use hemp protein and it was a good decision. Hemp tones muscles and does a lot of great things. It’s absolutely organic, vegan and raw. It’s a whole food that is made from hemp seeds. Also hemp isn’t processed product, it’s cold-pressed. Hemp has an amazing nutty taste. Once you try it, you will never even think about protein powders.

Probably you have no idea what you can cook with hemp. I am crazy about hemp smoothie and hemp milk! For smoothie I take 3 tbsp. of hemp seeds, 1 banana and a glass of milk. I blend the ingredients all together and add some ice to it. If you want to make hemp milk you will need 200 grams of seeds and 3 glasses of warm water. Blend seeds with water and strain the mixture through the sieve. Perhaps the taste will be unusual and inedible. That’s why I always add a bit of vanilla, maple syrup or strawberry to it. Now it’s the best drink I’ve ever tried!

7. Coconut flour
Coconut flour is a must if you want to get rid of body fat fast! It contains much more fiber and protein than usual flours. Plus, it is low in fat. It stabilizes the production of thyroid-hormone and reduces body fat due to its fiber content. I really love coconut flour. You can make some smoothie with it, or bake with it and make milk pudding.

Because of unusual density of coconut floor you can find it difficult to cook. That’s why I usually mix coconut flour with other kinds of flour. It perfectly goes with almond flour. They give delicate airy structure. But don’t reckon that coconut flour serves merely as sweet. You can use coconut flour to enhance the taste of baked meat and fish, omelet or whatever you want. But make sure you don’t use any coconut butter. Forget about sugar, nuts and dried fruits and use stevia instead. The only bad thing is that coconut flour is definitely not the cheapest one. That’s why try to purchase it online or prepare it by yourself using coconut flakes.

8. Avoid nut butter
Most of us love nut butters, but many of us forget that nut butter is high in calories. How do you want to lose body fat if you get this ocean of calories? Just imagine: 2 spoons of butter contain up to 200 calories! And I know you eat a bit more than two spoons. Consume nut butters in moderation or don’t buy them at all. Opt for chia seeds, flax seeds and – as I have already said – hemp seeds! For the best result add 3 tbsp. of them to your food and eat them every day.

If you’re a sweet tooth and can’t live without this tasty food, here are some tricks I use to substitute nut butter. The first one is honey. It contains fructose and antioxidants. I use honey in my tea, coffee and in recipes as a sugar substitute. Berries are the second thing I eat when I need something sweet. Most people who stick to diets think that fruits can completely substitute artificial sweeteners and sugar. This is not really so. Many fruits are high in calories and only increase body fats. Banana, grapes, avocado and mango are all high in calories. Berries contain only 30-40 calories in 100 grams and, what is more, they benefit digestion and metabolism. Try these ploys to avoid using butter in your diet.

9. Stop eating diet foods
A lot of people think that they can lose weight by eating diet cereals, ice creams, protein bars, etc. The truth is that diet foods don’t work! Don’t buy processed foods in special cans, containers and boxes. Don’t eat a lot of artificial sweeteners, excess carbs and processed breads. Opt for organic fresh food, instead. Organic food will improve your mood and help you lose your weight faster. The food is considered to be organic if it contains more than 90% of natural ingredients. It means that no pesticides or fertilizers were used in it. Check whether the product is properly marked.

It’s always a great idea to make your own meal instead of buying frozen dishes. Remember that healthy food lays in your saucepan and is not packed in plastic bag. Cook the portion you can eat at one go. Try not to keep dishes for several days. I know how difficult it is to refuse so habitual food. And you may be at a loss at first when looking at those raw vegetables, oatmeal, spices and dairy products. But if you really want to improve digestion and speed up metabolism get used to cooking for yourself. Healthy, organic food can be really delicious.

10. The intervals
Regular half hour trainings prove to be much more effective than two-hour overload at weekends. Try doing different exercises. For instance, 1 minute of high intensity exercises to 3 minutes of easy pace and vice versa. Usually, an interval workout takes for 30 minutes and you need to repeat this 2-3 times a week. After interval training you will continue losing fat intensively when the session is over! You can choose biking, running, skipping rope or whatever you like. Moreover, short intervals strategy also works with weight trainings.

Try to change or vary your fitness program every other week. Your muscles get used to all the exercises, and with time they may be not so effective. This integration in your fitness routine will increase your metabolism and, of course, help to burn body fat. Your heart will work as a clock, and the effect of intervals will keep for a long time after workouts. However, don’t go mad on trainings. Our body needs recovery and relaxation, otherwise we exhaust it. Another important thing to consider is intervals between food intake. Eat small portions 5 or 6 times a day. Packing your stomach after workout is the worst mistake you can make. To define the size of a portion use your palm. Stick to these rules and you will manage to get rid of fat faster than you think.

11. Green helpers
We all know that vegetables are useful for us. They make us healthier and give a lot of vitamins. Moreover, vegetables are the main food in vegetarian and vegan diet. So, stop arguing with your mother and just eat it! You should eat your veggies at least 5 times a day. Let your immune system become stronger and boost your metabolism to get rid of body fat fast.

Eating vegetables will provide you with all necessary vitamins and minerals. When your body is supplied with nutrients it functions properly. Thus, vegetables are a sure way to speed up metabolism and stay fit. The number of recipes with vegetables is really astonishing. Roast, baked, stewed vegetables are all great. Moreover, vegetable juice, smoothie and even desserts are at your choice. Do not forget about fennel, onion, parsley and lettuce. They are a fount of antioxidants and minerals. I always accomplish salads with green spices to enhance the taste and make the dish full of vitamins. Eat fresh organic vegetables and you will watch your needless pounds disappear.

12. Music
Music is a great companion when you work out. You can get some motivation and it gives you more energy and strength even when you are bored or tired. Just make sure you renew your playlist regularly. Music makes the intense and the pace of exercises. Calm and relaxing music is good complement to yoga and meditation. Download all your favorite tracks and enjoy listening to them when running. If you can’t find any good songs, try listening radio. It’s a good alternative to your own playlist. Other people care about your good mood and your body charger. I love listening iTunes radio. It helps me be more energetic, hence burn more calories and reduce body fat! Music helps to concentrate on the task, and it gives people confidence and faith.

Another way to lose fat with music is dancing. It gives you a burst of positive emotions and helps to get free. An hour of fervent movements will burn almost 500 calories! When you have nothing to do just turn on the music and help your body feel good.

13. Combine cardio and strength training
This way will definitely help you burn calories, reduce body fat and increase your metabolism. Combine 45-60 minutes of cardio training with weight training and you will get a great result. A couple of sets will reinforce the effect. By combining cardio and strength exercises you will develop your muscles and get rid of that fat. Cardio trainings enhance your body endurance and weight trainings help to create muscles. Combined trainings are always more effective than only one kind of exercise. Our muscles get used to every kind of physical activity. That’s the reason we feel uncomfortable at the beginning of the session and good after the training. However, when we work with the same complex of exercises for a long time they become inefficient.

It’s recommended to combine cardio and strength trainings to achieve great results. I also recommend you to check your heart rate regularly when exercising in order to prevent an overload. Normal heart rate can increase up to 140 when exercising.

14. Jump
All children, teens and adults love to jump! Skipping-rope is still a favorite entertainment of many people. It’s fun and it really helps us to burn calories and shed body fat. In the sport it’s called “plyometric exercises”. You may do the burpee or jump lunges and jump squat. Jump every day for faster results.

An hour of jumping can help you lose up to 700 calories! However, don’t hurry to start right now! Jumping is not as easy as you think. You will see that even 5 minutes of such exercises are tiresome. Start with 50 jumps and gradually enhance the amount till you are able to jump at least 15 minutes. I usually do 3 or 4 sets during the day and it help me stay fit. The main point in jumping is to breathe evenly. Inhale with your nose and exhale with your mouth. Jumping will not only burns fat but also increase the endurance of your body. If you use a skipping rope, make sure that the hops are frequent and with low amplitude. Ask you sister or friend to jump with you. Emulative spirit will make your trainings even more effective, not to mention fun that you are going to have!

15. Yoga
That’s the thing I’m really crazy about! Yoga is a true remedy against fats and excess weight. However, a lot of people think that yoga isn’t useful, and they think that it’s simply a waste of their time, because of its slow movement exercises. But I don’t agree with this and I’m going to explain why.

Yoga provides perfect effect on your muscles as you accomplish many balance postures. Each posture lasts for at least 15 seconds. Believe me, it’s enough to get tired. When your muscles are tense you have to make efforts not to lose balance. As a result, you burn lots of calories.

Yoga will make your body flexible and endurable. But everyday practice is important if you want to gain some results. I don’t mean you should spend 2 hours daily doing yoga. 30-40 minutes will be enough to tone your body. Surf the Internet to find complexes for beginners and start with basic postures.

Try to combine yoga exercises with your usual workouts and your body fat will disappear faster than you think. Plus, you will tone your whole body and clean the lymph system. Don’t underestimate yoga, it boasts amazing health benefits. After all, have you ever seen a fat yogi?

16. Chlorophyll helpers
We have already talked about vegetables, but now I want to take your attention on greens. They are good for your body and they help burn fat. It’s full of chlorophyll, that’s why the process of fat releasing goes faster and it cleanses your body naturally. I love spirulina since it’s a great source of chlorophyll and it contains protein, Vitamin B12 and amino acids. Add more greens to your smoothies and salads. Start your mornings with green juice. A twig of parsley can enrich the taste of any dish. Moreover, you will get enough energy, become happier and slimmer.

Another essential green helper is seaweed. People often ignore this food as it looks weird and people don’t know what to do with it. However, seaweed is a fount of iodine which is found in very few products. Iodine helps our thyroid gland function thoroughly. As you know thyroid gland is extremely important for maintaining a good weight. Seaweed can be used as an appetizer or a snack. To prepare seaweed salad, add vinegar, salt, sugar and olive oil to the portion of seaweed. Seaweed salads go with meat and fish. Regular eating of this chlorophyll product will provide you with spirit, health body and perfect weight.

17. Superfoods
There are 3 superfoods that will help you burn more calories, balance your hormones, increase your metabolism and reduce body fat. These foods are cacao, maca and acai. Add them to your diet and you will feel the result very soon. If you feel that you don’t have enough energy and you get a lot of stress during the day, then you need to consume more maca. It balances your hormones and solve problems with thyroid-boosting amino acids. Believe in its wonderful qualities and this superfood will help you!

Cacao powder is a diet-friendly chocolate ingredient that lowers appetite and gives you a sort of satisfaction. It contains magnesium that helps reduce stress. Plus, cacao improves metabolism, as it is a natural stimulant. Even people who stick to a diet are allowed to eat up to 50 grams of dark chocolate with high level of cacao in it. It’s a real cure if you cut down on all the sweets.

Acai helps reduce stress and shed fat storage due to its high omega 3 fatty acid and antioxidant content. Add them to juices, smoothies or milk and get rid of the body fat faster. When I need recreation and warmth I love to enjoy drinking chocolate milk. To make this fantastic drink you will need 2 glasses of milk, 2 tsp. of vanilla extract, 3 tbsp. of cacao powder and 1 tbsp. of maca powder. Sugar or other sweeteners are optional. Just boil the milk and add all the rest ingredients. Enjoy your healthy drink!

18. Regular workouts
Stop thinking that one workout a week will help you lose weight. If you want to get rid of your body fat fast, you should exercise 5-6 times a week. It’s impossible to gain the same result by training once a week during several hours. Regular trainings will help load your body evenly without excess stress. However, you should determine your abilities before training too intensively.

During the first few weeks, 2-3 trainings will be enough. You will gradually strengthen your muscles and will be able to increase the number of trainings. You will burn 700 calories every day, if you work out regularly. Consider the time of trainings as well. The optimal duration is 45-60 minutes. Don’t exercise for longer than 60 minutes since it can destroy your muscle tissue. I recommend sticking to a usual time, and you will certainly achieve your weight loss goals.

19. Healthy diet
This is one of the easiest ways to get rid of your body fat. If you want to lose those unwanted pounds make sure you eat healthy. Do you remember about healthy food pyramid? It should be your guidance on the way to a perfect body. Cut down on junk food, excess sweets, salt and fizzy beverages. Add lean meats, vegetables and fruits to your diet to feel good and have enough energy to exercise daily. Opt for high fiber and whole grain foods and avoid eating fried foods.

The best way to cook healthy is baking. Most vegetables and meat preserve all the nutrients and vitamins when they are baked. Try to freeze fruits and berries in order to supply your body with all the essential elements in winter. Be sure to drink 8 glasses of water every day and avoid drinking alcohol. And finally, try to eat 5 to 6 smaller meals a day to boost your metabolism and tickle your taste buds. The intervals between food intakes should not exceed 3 hours. Try not to eat 2 hours before bed. When you sleep your stomach cannot function properly. As a result you will harm your digestion and put on several needless pounds.

20. Mini meals
Just because you are trying to get rid of body fat doesn’t mean you should starve yourself. As I mentioned above, you need to eat mini meals throughout the day to lose weight the healthy way. Although late-night snacking is a bad idea, if hunger strikes in the middle of the night, don’t be afraid to eat a healthy mini meal. Fruits are great companions when you want to eat something without wrecking your diet. A peach with organic yogurt is the perfect snack to eat before sleep.

If you are busy all day long and there’s no possibility to have lunch, prepare your snacks at home. Walnuts, berries, and vegetables make a perfect, healthy snack. My favorite snack is a tomato salad with cheese. I just slice tomato, add in small pieces of cheese and a twig of parsley. Voila! My healthy snack is ready!

Losing weight doesn’t have to be hard. Little changes and great motivation are all you need to achieve your goal. Are you going to try any of these ways to get rid of body fat fast? Do you have any tips to share with us?

10 Sneaky Tricks to Eat Less

If you’re trying to lose those unwanted pounds, you might want to know some tricks to eat less throughout the day. Sticking to a healthy diet isn’t fun and easy. Between consuming bland foods and depriving yourself, you may simply give up after the first few weeks. When you fool yourself into eating less, it’s much easier to achieve your weight loss goal. Below is the list of 10 sneaky tricks that will help you to eat less throughout the day.

1. Water
Drinking a full glass of water before eating is one of the best ways to trick yourself into eating less. The point is, the water fills the stomach and you feel full faster from your meal. In fact, the water is not the only drink that fills the stomach. Juice is another option. Just make sure you avoid soda, sweet teas and coffee. They are just empty calories your body doesn’t need at all. I recommend drinking water with lemon that helps with nausea as well.

2. Small plate
Believe it or not, but a small plate can really help you to eat less. Many people say that this easy trick doesn’t work, but I can say from my personal experience that it actually works. When your plate is big, you have a lot of space for food. When your plate or bowl is smaller, you don’t have free space to pile up food. Buy smaller plates, eat less and drop those unwanted pounds with almost no effort.

3. Non-dominant hand
Whether you are enjoying your meal or snacking, try switching to your non-dominant hand in order to eat less. The research conducted by psychologists of the University of Southern California showed that people who ate with their non-dominant hand consumed less food (popcorn was used in this experiment) than those who used their dominant hand.

4. Large fork
I know, I know, this sounds absolutely ridiculous, but the study published in the Journal of Consumer Research showed that eating with a larger fork can help to consume less food. You think you’re making more progress on your meal and eat more, but in fact you eat less.

5. Eating slowly
When you eat fast you eat more food and you may eventually gain weight. By eating slower, you will consume less food, and that will help you drop more pounds. Plus, eating slowly enhances the pleasure of the enjoyable dining experience. Enjoy your meal slowly, ladies!

6. Stop eating while watching TV
A lot of different studies show that when people are distracted, they typically eat more. If you like eating while watching your favorite shows, I guess this is a bad news for you. You should break this habit immediately if you don’t want to gain weight. Eating while playing on the computer or reading is another bad habit to break.

7. Sugar-free gum
To eat less, always carry sugar-free gum in your pocket or purse. The ingredients in the chewing gum can curb your cravings and help you snack less. And if your friend has a junk fest that includes potato chips, cookies and ice cream, and you are trying to stick to your diet, sugar-free gum will certainly help control your cravings.

8. Move healthy food up front
When we enter the store, most of us snap up the food items at the front since they are the first thing we see. This same behavior can also happen in your kitchen. Have you ever noticed that you take the first food item you see in your fridge than the fourth or fifth? If you want to eat less, place healthy foods such as fresh fruits and veggies front and center in your fridge and make sure you hide high-calorie foods in the back.

9. Make smart food swaps
Whether you are trying to eat healthy or lose weight, you need to learn how to make smart food swaps. While chocolate is chocolate and bacon is bacon, you can opt for dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate and eat Canadian bacon instead of regular bacon. If you know what smart food swaps to make, you can easily trick your mind into thinking you are satisfied. Just make sure you control your portions and use the tricks I mentioned before.

10. Learn to eat mindfully
The key to eating less is to eat mindfully. Pay attention to how your body feels after eating. If you always feel an energy crash after eating, it’s a sure sigh you overeat. Learn to eat mindfully and really enjoy what you eat. Hopefully, these several tips on how to start eating mindfully will help you.

Healthy eating plan and exercise are two essential things for weight loss. However, these simple tricks will help put you much closer to your weight loss goal. How do you fool yourself into eating less throughout the day? Please, feel free to share your weight loss tips with us.