You love your dog, and that means you often want to feed them the tasty treats you enjoy. After all, it might not feel fair for them to miss out. Many desserts feature cinnamon, a spice that can pack flavor in every bite. But is cinnamon bad for dogs? You'll want to make sure you feed your dog only the best so they can stay in excellent health. In short, no, cinnamon is not bad for dogs. Still, that doesn't mean you can be feeding your dog handfuls of cinnamon at a time. While your dog may not face fatal side effects by ingesting some cinnamon, eating it can still be a cause for concern. What to Watch Out for With Cinnamon Mainly, you should watch out for cinnamon essential oil, as it can poison your pet. Essential oils are bad to have around pets in general, as they can be toxic once in contact with your dog's skin. Try to keep essential oils locked away in another room, where your dog can't get to them. If you like the aroma of essential oils, opt for a non-toxic candle instead if you want the scent in the same room as your dog. You also need to be aware of your dog's size. Smaller dogs can tolerate smaller quantities of cinnamon. Larger dogs will likely be all right if they ingest a little more than a teaspoon, but that doesn't mean that you should try it out. It's better to err on the side of caution, which means not intentionally feeding your dog a lot of cinnamon — if you feed them any at all. How Much Cinnamon Can Dogs Have? Is cinnamon bad for dogs? No, but it isn't always a good dietary option, either. Really, no amount of cinnamon is entirely safe for a dog to ingest. Humans enjoy a host of benefits from consuming cinnamon, such as aiding in digestion or even reducing the risk of cancer in some people. Unfortunately, dogs don't have the same proven results. It's still to be determined whether a dietary supplement of cinnamon could actually help your dog, so talk to your veterinarian before feeding your pup any. You may consider substituting another natural supplement to achieve the results you want for your dog. One of the side effects of dogs eating too much cinnamon is that it could lead to skin and digestive issues in your pup. In fact, allowing your dog to ingest cinnamon on a regular basis can lead to irritation — so you shouldn't use it as a topping for their daily meals. Similar to how humans may have difficulty breathing after inhaling too much cinnamon, dogs also can have irritated airways from breathing the spice in. Be sure to watch out if your dog is in the kitchen while you're cooking. So, Is Cinnamon Bad for Dogs? No, cinnamon is not bad for dogs inherently. It can cause irritation, though the severity depends on how much they ingest, but it will not kill them. However, don't use this as an excuse to give your pup some of your tasty desserts! While people may rely on cinnamon to add flavor as they cut back on something like salt, dogs don't particularly need a lot of flavor in their food. If you want to give your dog some delicious people food, try creating homemade apple or peanut butter treats instead. Your dog will thank you for the tasty snack!
It should be of little surprise that speaking niceties to yourself is an excellent mood booster. Likewise, there are far too many scientifically-proven benefits of meditation for you to overlook. So, how does one combine the two and reap the rewards? An easy mantra meditation for beginners might be just what you need to kickstart your practice. What Is Mantra Meditation? A centuries-old spiritual tradition with Hindu and Buddhist roots in India, mantra meditation has gained increasing popularity in Western adaptations of yoga. Research shows that mantra meditation — which uses the repetition of words and phrases to create focus, intention and optimism — yields several mental and physical health benefits, such as the following: Stress relief Decreased feelings of depression and anxiety Reduced blood pressure Boosted immunity In one study, scientists found that mantra meditation helped participants self-regulate their emotions and was noticeably effective in those with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), providing greater relaxation. Practicing an Easy Mantra Meditation for Beginners: 5 Steps Building concentration may be the most challenging part of learning to do a mantra meditation. Nevertheless, giving yourself time and patience to embody your chosen saying will make the practice more effortless. Here are five helpful steps for practicing easy mantra meditation for beginners. 1. Create a Calming Space Creating a relaxing meditation area with few distractions is essential before beginning your practice. This could be a bedroom, a cozy corner in the living room or home office, in a park, at the beach or anywhere else that calms you. You might even form an altar with candles, incense or healing crystals. 2. Sit Comfortably Find a comfortable position to sit in — some meditation practitioners prefer to prop themselves up with pillows, cushions and blankets. Others find that sitting in a chair is better for their body and offers more support on their back. If you find it challenging to settle in for your practice, long, deep breaths will initiate your parasympathetic nervous system and allow you to relax. 3. Choose a Mantra A mantra can be your favorite word, quote, prayer or something similar — however, since you'll repeat it several times, it should only be a few syllables long. Choosing a mantra is profoundly personal and should be something you find inspiring or that touches your heart. Beginner meditators might consider the following simple mantras for their practice: I am attracting everything I dream of. Recharge and renew. I follow my bliss. I love who I'm becoming. This, too, shall pass. You can also chant one of the Sanskrit mantras, such as "Om" — which Hindu traditions says is the embodied vibrational sound of the universe or creation — or "So Hum," translated to "I am." 4. Recite Your Mantra Once seated and taking rhythmic breaths, close your eyes and recite your mantra aloud. Repeat the word or saying softly, gently and without force. You can transition to silent repetition if you prefer. It's natural for random thoughts to pop into your head occasionally — it's also typical for your mind to wander. Avoid stopping these occurrences, acknowledging that the thought is there and allowing the mantra to draw your attention back to your heart center. 5. Come Out of Your Meditation After about 20–30 minutes of repeating your mantra, you can begin to wind down your practice. Continue sitting quietly with your eyes closed and remain present. When you're ready, open your eyes slowly, take a deep breath and get on with your day. Thirty minutes could feel like a long time to chant for an easy mantra meditation for beginners. Don't worry if it's too challenging initially — even a few minutes of practice will benefit you. Mantra Meditation Is for Everyone You don't have to be an experienced practitioner of mantra meditation to make the practice a part of your daily routine. Mantra meditation is for everyone, regardless of how long you've been at it or for how long you sit. Enjoy the benefits of less stress and more optimism when you take the time to chant.
Are you considering marriage counseling but aren’t sure if it’s worth the investment? If so, you’ve probably got plenty of questions, including: How much does marriage counseling cost per session? How many sessions will you need to pay for? Will your health insurance cover marriage counseling? This article will teach you the average cost of marriage counseling and whether your health insurance plan will cover it. We’ll also provide alternative ways to find affordable couples therapy. What Is the Average Cost for a Marriage Counseling Session? An average counseling session lasts about 60 minutes, and most therapists charge by the hour. While session rates will vary depending on the provider, the average cost of a 60-minute couples therapy session is around $100 per hour. Most counselors will advise couples to visit for more than one session. Typically, they might recommend a couple of visits. Some might suggest longer-term counseling, including weekly sessions for three months or more. Ultimately, how long a couple decides to pursue therapy is up to them. Let’s say your therapist recommends three months of weekly counseling sessions. The total cost of couples therapy would then be $1,200. Don’t be shy about asking your counselor upfront what they charge per session and how long they recommend you visit with them. And remember, you are not obligated to complete all the sessions. You can cancel therapy at any time and for any reason. Call at least a day in advance to avoid being charged a no-show fee if you intend to cancel a session. Does My Insurance Cover Marriage Counseling? Unfortunately, your health insurance plan likely does not cover marriage counseling. If a marriage therapist says otherwise, you might want to press them for more information, as marriage counseling is not recognized as a critical or essential health care service. Therefore, most insurance plans do not cover marriage counseling. Some therapists might code a session as mental health care treatment for a mental health disorder for one or both spouses and bill their insurance company accordingly, all while actually conducting couples therapy. However, this practice is considered fraud by the U.S. government if you or your spouse does not have a mental health disorder. Where Can I Find Affordable Marriage Counseling Services? If you’re worried about the cost of couples counseling, you’re not alone. To put you at ease, we’ve compiled some alternative ways to find affordable couples therapy: Collateral Coverage Unlike therapists billing a session for mental health care and illegally conducting couples therapy instead, collateral coverage is a legitimate way to address issues that might affect your marriage without billing for couples therapy. For example, if your partner has a mental health disorder or battles substance use that impacts your marriage, you can sit in during their sessions to learn more about the condition. During their sessions, you’ll learn healthy ways of coping and communicating with one another. However, this method is not necessarily a substitute for marriage counseling, nor will couples therapy take place. Employee-Assistance Programs If you or your spouse are a part of an employee-assistance program (EAP), you might want to look into the benefits, as some EAPs provide short-term counseling services. Some EAPs also contract with outside mental health care practices, so short-term couples therapy through your EAP might be an option. Best of all, if your EAP does cover marriage counseling, the services are free and confidential and eliminate the need to find a certified licensed marriage and family therapist (LMFT) on your own. EAP clinicians can also point you toward other resources that might be beneficial, like local couples groups or informational sessions you might find helpful. Grant-Funded Public Health Clinics Lastly, many public health clinics offer free or low-cost mental health care services, including couples counseling. Contact your local public health clinic to enquire about low-cost marriage counseling services. Plus, some universities have received grants to conduct mental health research. To partake in a study, contact a nearby university to see if there are currently any ongoing mental health research studies or projects. Additionally, you can enquire whether any MFT training students can provide free or low-cost couples counseling services. Is Couples Counseling Worth the Investment? Though your health insurance might not cover couples counseling, don’t feel discouraged. It may seem like a costly or even risky investment initially, but partaking in quality couples counseling is priceless if you and your spouse can find common ground to rekindle that old spark.
Are you one of the folks who habitually skips out on the stretch portion of your workouts? Maybe you want to build muscle but don’t have the money for a gym membership or to stock a home fitness center. Hot power yoga might be the answer to your prayers. This workout style combines flexibility and strength for a calorie-torching workout that helps you build lean muscle. What are the benefits of this unique exercise style, and what should you know before your first class? Learn how you can combine sweat and strength with a hot power yoga workout that will get you in shape for the summer. What Is Hot Power Yoga? Hot power yoga combines the best of two distinct styles: power yoga and hot yoga. Both these forms arose relatively recently, making combining the two a natural fit. Hot yoga builds on the teachings of Bikram Choudury who brought the practice to Hollywood in the 1980s. Traditional Bikram classes mimic the environment on the Indian subcontinent by practicing in a room heated to 105° Fahrenheit with 40% humidity. However, many modern hot power yoga teachers don’t dial up the temperature quite as much. Power yoga arose nearly simultaneously on the east and west coasts. Bryan Kest brought the practice to Los Angeles, and Beryl Bender Birch used similar techniques in New York. The practice builds on the teachings of the great Ashtangi Sri K. Pattabhi Jois and focuses on building agni fire or heat in the body through strong vinyasa movements followed by powerful stationary holds. Power yoga already brings the heat — hot power yoga dials up the external temperature. The result is one scorcher of a workout that will leave you feeling internally cleansed and ready for the day. 5 Unique Benefits of Hot Power Yoga What are some of the unique benefits of hot power yoga? Check out these fabulous advantages. 1. Combines All Three Fitness Components in One You need a combination of strength, cardiovascular and flexibility training for a complete fitness program. That’s an awful lot to squeeze into your week, especially if you work long hours. However, this workout combines all three aspects of complete fitness into one. The combination of vinyasa flows and power holds elevates your heart rate, while moves like chaturanga and high lunges tone your upper and lower body. Of course, it’s yoga — so you get a terrific stretch, too. 2. Doesn’t Require Equipment to Build Strength Maybe you don’t have much of a budget for workout equipment. That’s no excuse for skipping fitness — the only tools you need for hot power yoga are a mat and a towel, although you can invest in blocks and straps if you like. Perhaps you hesitate to lift weights out of fear of gaining bulk. Do you want that lean, swimmer’s look? Hot power yoga can help you achieve a sculpted physique that’s lean and mean. 3. It’s Suitable for Those Who Need Low-Impact Activities Even though hot power yoga is intense, it is still low-impact. You always have options, such as stepping back into plank instead of hopping. Therefore, this activity is perfect for people with arthritis who crave a hardcore workout that doesn’t put undue pressure on their hips and knees. You’ll also strengthen surrounding muscle tissue, which helps support creaky joints. 4. It’s the Perfect Way to Cross-Train Rest day doesn’t mean all-day Netflix and Nintendo. Are you seeking the ideal cross-training activity? Hot power yoga is the perfect activity to squeeze in between your lower and upper body strength training days if you want to add variety to your weight-lifting addiction. 5. It Introduces You to Yoga Principles Many people who take these classes are there for the workout, not spirituality. However, you’ll still learn several yoga principles that may encourage you to expand your practice into a more reflective, nearly religious experience. What You Should Know Before Going to a Hot Power Yoga Class Hot power yoga offers oodles of benefits, but there are some precautions you should know about before you attend your first class. Talk to your doctor: This is intense exercise. Furthermore, it’s done in a heated room. People with heart conditions need to take extra precautions, so talk to your doctor to find out if this regimen is right for you and get tips for your unique body. Talk to your guide: Every yoga guide is different. Some take a very hands-on approach, adjusting you in various poses. However, you might not appreciate a stranger’s touch if you have sensory-processing issues or a trauma history — let your guide know your preferences. Go early: Arriving early gives you a chance to talk one-on-one with your guide, who can recommend modifications for tricky moves. Relax and observe: Don’t worry about perfecting the moves at first or following everything perfectly. After all, it’s hard to see the guide when you’re bent in a forward fold and facing the back of the room. Do what you can, but observe the rest until you feel confident. Be patient: I know we keep repeating it, but hot power yoga is intense. You might struggle through your first few classes and will still experience the burn years into your practice — so don’t get discouraged if you feel challenged. Why Hot Power Yoga Is Perfect for Summer Hot power yoga is fabulous any time of the year. However, it’s especially sweet in summer. Why? You can take your practice outdoors. Pay attention to atmospheric conditions — but let Mother Nature guide your practice. Instead of remaining at home, head to your favorite nature area to soak up some vitamin D-producing sunlight and let the day’s heat relax your muscles. Sweaty Summertime Strength With Hot Power Yoga Do you want to get sleek and strong for summer? Hot power yoga could be your ticket. This modern variation on the ancient practice gives hardcore exercisers the intense experience they crave. Build sweaty summertime strength with hot power yoga.
As if your skincare routine didn't have enough products, another one is a great contender for the lineup: retinol. Retinol does work wonders in that you can see a difference in your skin after just a short time of using it. Because you'll only be using it at night, you might think this small product is worth the investment, even if you experience negative side effects when you start incorporating it into your routine. Here's everything you need to know about what retinol does and how you can add it to your routine almost seamlessly. What Is Retinol? Retinol is a form of Vitamin A that you can take as a supplement — whether orally or through skincare. Vitamin A naturally occurs in foods as well. Leafy green vegetables are some of the best sources of Vitamin A, but other food groups, like dairy and eggs, can also hold some Vitamin A. Too much Vitamin A can lead to dry skin and nausea, so you should watch how much you consume. Skincare with retinol can be found in any location where skincare products are sold. Retinol does work and might be more effective than you think, so try to find a strength and a consistency of product that you're comfortable with. This product can come in serums, gels, creams and so much more. You might even find a face mist with these anti-aging benefits in it! So, What Does Retinol Do? Retinol does exactly what you've heard: it diminishes the effects of aging on your face. While it can't turn back the clock, it can help clear up your skin and reduce some signs of aging by promoting the elasticity of the skin. It can also reduce inflammation, which could lead to several chronic health issues. Similarly, this product can unclog your pores and increase your collagen production. More collagen means you likely appear to have fewer wrinkles, giving you the overall youthful appearance you want. You may just look fresher after implementing retinol into your skincare routine for a while, but you should keep in mind that there will be an adjustment period as your skin gets used to the new product. How to Incorporate Retinol Into Your Routine If you want your retinol to do exactly what you want, you should incorporate it into your nighttime skincare routine only. Even so, you may not want to use it every night. Once you start using retinol, you'll figure out what routine works best for you and how to mitigate any negative side effects. 1. Prioritize Sunscreen The most important product in your morning skincare lineup should be your sunscreen. Sunscreen serves as a protection against the harsh rays of the sun, which can both internally and externally damage your skin, as well as age you prematurely. When you incorporate retinol into your regular routine, sunscreen is more important than ever, as your skin will be even more vulnerable to sun damage. 2. Learn to Wait Retinol works best when your face has had time to rest from other products. When you cleanse your face, you should wait about 30 minutes before applying retinol. You should also give it time to soak in before using your next products. Using this product correctly will teach you how to wait and help you prioritize other things to get yourself ready for a healthy bedtime. 3. Start Slow As with any new product in your routine, you'll want to slowly incorporate it into use. Retinol isn't necessarily meant to be used every day. You might see negative side effects, like irritated or dry skin, as a result of too much use. You can use skin cycling as a way to rotate through your skincare regimen while allowing your skin time to heal from the harsher products. This way, your products last longer, and your skin may be healthier than if you were using every product every night. What Does Retinol Do For You? Retinol can do whatever you want it to, and the results largely depend on how much retinol you use and how often. You should always start out slow when incorporating a new skincare product into your routine. While retinol can't rewind time and make you look drastically younger, it can make you feel better about your appearance while decreasing the number of fine lines you see on your face. It could be worth adding to your skincare rotation so you can reap the benefits without the responsibility of using it every night.
Most people experience occasional doubts in relationships but sometimes it can go so far that the anxiety ends the relationship. If you feel consumed by a waving level of attraction or uncertainty and anxiety, there may be something deeper going on. If the feelings are frequent and persistent, you may have relationship OCD. Relationship OCD is a real diagnosis. Here is an overview of what it is and how to cope. Relationship OCD Relationship OCD (ROCD) is a form of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) that involves intrusive thoughts and behaviors related to your romantic relationship. You may experience repetitive thoughts of uncertainty or fears in the relationship. It can look like questioning if your partner loves you or if it will last forever. The thoughts can eventually lead to behaviors that are done for constant reassurance or even end the relationship. It can cause a great deal of stress on both partners in the relationship and the relationship as a whole. Individuals with OCD are typically single, can find romantic relationships hard and report significant stress. Signs of ROCD People with ROCD tend to respond to their doubts with compulsive behavior to relieve the anxiety of the intrusive thoughts. You may have rituals you go to when the intrusive thoughts start flowing. There are some typical compulsive behaviors in ROCD. Constant comparison. You may constantly compare your relationship to other relationships, whether it is friends, fictional TV shows or past relationships. Searching for evidence. To affirm the relationship, you might be an emotional detective. You will try to seek proof that your partner is a good match and truly loves you. Reassurance. Sometimes seeking reassurance from a partner or others about the relationship is a sign of ROCD. Mental Monitoring. Spending hours breaking down thoughts or feelings about the relationship. The behaviors won’t ease the doubts or make the relationship better in the long run. It provides temporary relief and makes the anxiety worse over time. Causes The reason for ROCD is unclear, but some factors can contribute. Some reasons people risk developing relationship OCD are: Trauma History of abuse Sudden life changes Anxious attachment style Loss of a loved one It is not uncommon to have ups and down with relationship anxiety from time to time. People with relationship OCD may experience it more frequently. Types of ROCD There are two forms of relationship OCD. You may experience one or the other or have a mixture of both. Relationship-focused: Your symptoms are centered around the relationship as a whole. You may question if you are really in love with them or if the relationship is what you want. Partner-focused: In form is centered around questioning the characteristics of your partner. You may love your partner but have questions about their personality or other characteristics. Treatment The first step to tackling this condition is to talk to your doctor about managing symptoms. Since OCD symptoms are already linked to difficulty maintaining and establishing romantic relationships, you will want to find ways to control them. Getting treatment for your symptoms will help you and your relationship thrive. Treatment for ROCD can either be psychotherapy, medication or a combination of the two. Psychotherapy helps work on challenging areas like poor social skills, low self-esteem or anything that could get in the way of developing a healthy relationship. Medications can be prescribed to reduce symptoms of OCD. They are similar to antidepressants and help with serotonin reuptake. The Bottom Line Relationships are complex on their own. When ROCD is added into the mix, it can make things even more challenging to deal with. To have a happy and long-lasting relationship, it is best to identify if you are suffering from this and find a way to manage the symptoms.
Who said you can’t work up a sweat doing yoga? You’ll shimmer plenty in a hot yoga class, and it won’t all be from the room temperature. Many such classes offer plenty of intensity for serious athletes looking to improve their on-field performance. However, it’s still gentle and accessible enough for ordinary mortals in search of a mind-body workout that leaves them feeling cleansed. What should you expect if you have never gone to a class before? What are the origins of this style and its health benefits? Here’s what you need to know about hot yoga as you prepare to work up a sweat on your mat. The Origins of Hot Yoga Hot yoga has relatively recent official roots, although the practice began thousands of years ago — long before indoor air conditioning. Bikram Choudbury brought many of the techniques to the rich and famous in the United States, although he got his international start teaching in Japan. There, he sought to reproduce the conditions on the Indian subcontinent by cranking up the heat in the studio, letting the island nation’s natural humidity do the rest. While Bikram classes demand temperatures of 105-degrees Fahrenheit and 40% humidity, today’s hot yoga teachers interpret the term more flexibly. Many don’t crank the thermostat much over 95-degrees Fahrenheit — which is still plenty warm for working up a sweat. Unlike Bikram, hot yoga classes don’t follow a set sequence. Instead, teachers are free to use any combination of poses or asanas and pace classes to meet their participants’ needs. Some teachers encourage rapid, vinyasa-style movements to keep your heart rate elevated, while others implement more power techniques, holding poses like warrior for considerable time to burn out your muscles. What are the benefits? Practitioners believe that sweating helps you cleanse your body of toxins, although western science refutes this claim. However, that’s not to mean you won’t reap perks. Your liver and kidneys do much of the work of cleaning your body, and regular exercise helps them function at their peak — so you do indirectly rid yourself of the bad stuff more effectively with regular practice. Additionally, you’ll achieve all three components of total fitness in most classes. Rapid vinyasa transitions between poses activate your cardiovascular system, while holding static strength builds muscle. Flexibility is a natural byproduct of doing yoga, and the heat may assist the process by loosening up your muscles and ligaments more than a cooler room. What to Expect From a Hot Yoga Class Hot yoga classes vary in intensity, with their one shared characteristic being high room temperatures. However, most instructors who embrace this style keep you moving. Therefore, you can expect your class to range in intensity from a medium-level Hatha class to an energetic Ashtanga session. You will get sweaty. If you don’t like being seen in public with your hair sticking up on your head in funny places or rings forming beneath your arms, you’ll need to shower when you finish. Most sessions in traditional gyms last an hour, while those in private studios may go 90 minutes. However, like many yoga classes, you’ll find participants of all levels. This inclusive activity welcomes anyone of any fitness ability. You can modify any pose that makes you uncomfortable to suit your unique body. Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Hot Yoga Class Are you ready to start your hot yoga journey? Here are seven tips for getting the most out of your hot yoga class. 1. Talk to Your Doctor Although talking to your doctor is sound advice before beginning any exercise program, it’s particularly crucial when starting your hot yoga journey if you have a heart condition. That’s because your heart rate increases by ten beats per minute when your internal temperature rises by one degree, amplifying the stress on this organ. Therefore, get your physician’s okay first if you take blood pressure medication or other prescriptions to manage a cardiovascular condition. Learn how to listen to your body and stop if you experience dizziness, lightheadedness or discomfort. 2. Talk to Your Instructor It’s always smart to arrive at your first class a few minutes early to chat with your guide. You’ll get a much better understanding of how they run their class and what intensity to expect. You’ll also get a chance to voice your needs. Let your guide know about any physical restrictions you have that may require modifications. Furthermore, some teachers take a hands-on approach, maneuvering you into different postures. Let them know if you prefer not to be touched. 3. Invest in the RIght Gear Hot yoga means that you can slip and slide on the wrong mat, and most gym-provided models will leave you skating. It’s always best to bring your mat to class to avoid sharing germs with others. Once you see how damp you get, you’ll consider it a worthy investment. Look for mats designed with non-slip surfaces. Some materials become grippier with use, making them ideal for hot yoga classes. 4. Bring Plenty of Water and Towels Sweat dehydrates you more quickly. Please bring plenty of water with you and sip often, even if your guide doesn’t provide break times. Furthermore, you’ll likely need more than the one tiny gym towel most facilities provide. Bring a few extra — if nothing else, they make lying in savasana more comfortable when you finish your routine by keeping your back off your sweaty mat. 5. Mindfully Tune In Even people without heart conditions can get a bit lightheaded in a hot yoga class. The risk increases if you have an empty stomach, although many students prefer to practice before breakfast to make moves like twists more comfortable. Please, mindfully tune into your inner experience and take a break at the first sign of dizziness. 6. Keep Safety First It might sound funny to say you have a hot yoga injury. However, the number of people visiting hospital emergency rooms for such harms has increased by 70% in recent years because of the growing interest in the practice. Challenge yourself but don’t push beyond your limits. If a move seems too difficult, or you start slip-sliding away, come out of the pose and regroup instead of risking injury. 7. Relax and Have Fun Finally, hot yoga, along with the other forms, invites you to relax and have fun. You won’t be an expert at first, and that’s okay. Go at your pace and take pride in getting a little better each time you hit the mat. If you make a mistake, you’re in good company, so laugh it off and move on to the next pose. What to Know About Hot Yoga Hot yoga is a fabulous way to work up a sweat. Although you won’t directly perspire your toxins away, you will improve your health. If you want to feel drenched and pleasantly drained after your workout, give hot yoga a try. The right gear and attitude will help you find joy in your practice.
Women diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) are all too familiar with the struggles of having a hormonal imbalance. Suddenly, juggling a healthy lifestyle and maintaining your reproductive well-being is as challenging as it is dire. Although finding an ideal regimen for managing PCOS is personal, health tips and tricks deliver hope in easing symptoms. What Is Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome? PCOS affects nearly 5% to 10% of women during childbearing age—although its onset can occur at puberty. Most women learn of their PCOS when they try to conceive, while others wait even longer for a diagnosis. Women with PCOS usually show signs of insulin resistance. Their bodies also produce excess androgens—male hormones — which prevent ovulation and could cause irregular menstrual cycles, infertility, hirsutism, weight gain, thinning hair and acne. Doctors usually diagnose PCOS if you present two of the following symptoms: Irregular menstruation or anovulation—prolonged periods without a menstrual cycle More androgens that induce unwanted hair growth, hair thinning or acne Small ovarian cysts, determined by transvaginal ultrasound While no cure or single medication exists for PCOS, your doctors can work with you on developing a treatment plan and lifestyle changes for relief. 6 Health Tips and Tricks to Deal With PCOS If you have PCOS, there’s never been a better time to get proactive about your health. PCOS can be lifelong, posing a higher risk of developing diabetes, gestational diabetes, heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, gynecological cancers, depression and anxiety. However, these six health tips and tricks can help. 1. Seek Help from Experienced Doctors Establishing the right team of providers is crucial for receiving the medical care you deserve. According to EndocrineWeb.com, a 2017 survey found that 50% of women saw three or more doctors for a PCOS diagnosis—30% reported it taking over two years. Your medical care team should include an experienced endocrinologist, gynecologist and primary care provider. If you’re trying to conceive, consider a reproductive endocrine specialist, too. Others prefer a more holistic approach with functional medicine specialists, therapists, nutritionists, dermatologists and estheticians to aid specific symptoms. 2. Eat a PCOS-Friendly Diet and Exercise Diet and exercise are integral in preventing several conditions caused by PCOS. Although made more challenging by hormonal imbalances, a low-calorie eating plan and healthy weight management can reduce insulin resistance, regulate menstrual cycles and avert diabetes and heart disease. Some women eliminate gluten and dairy to reduce inflammation, while most find avoiding sugary, processed and caffeinated foods is also beneficial. It’s also essential to get moving through aerobic exercise, resistance training or walking. One study suggests that 120 minutes of high-intensity weekly workouts significantly affect women with PCOS. Other studies have indicated that yoga can also reduce androgen levels and stress. 3. Take Supplements Certain supplements may help manage PCOS. For example, Myo-inositol can lower androgen levels and insulin resistance and improve fertility. Cinnamon supplements also transport sugar from the bloodstream to the cells to bolster the body’s insulin sensitivity. Additional supplements could include omega-3, turmeric and vitamins D and B. Regular bloodwork can help you determine vitamin deficiencies and the best supplements you should take for PCOS. 4. Consider Hair Removal Treatment About 65% to 75% of women with PCOS present hirsutism—unwanted hair growth on the face and body. For many, it’s a source of discomfort, embarrassment and reduced confidence. The only FDA-approved hair removal treatment is electrolysis, which permanently destroys hair growth cells at the follicle regardless of skin tone. Some women find laser hair removal more effective and affordable than electrolysis. However, laser merely slows the appearance of hair and, in some cases, may stimulate growth elsewhere. 5. Know Your Treatment Options Although there aren’t any medications to treat PCOS specifically, women often take birth control to regulate their cycles if they’re not trying to get pregnant. Combination birth control pills with estrogen and progesterone reduce androgens and balance proper female hormone production. Meanwhile, progestin-only medication protects those at higher risk of endometrial cancer due to PCOS. Women who wish to increase their fertility may be prescribed clomiphene, metformin and others. In-vitro fertilization (IVF) may also be necessary for conception. 6. Find Support and Stay Educated Finding support and staying educated is the most useful of all the healthy tips and tricks for living with PCOS. Visit PCOS organizations and forums to connect with fellow “cysters” for camaraderie on your journey. Likewise, stay abreast of the latest medications and tests underway to better diagnose, treat and manage life with PCOS—and talk to your doctors about your findings. As research advances and PCOS challenges become addressed more often, diagnostic criteria and medical care will improve. Live Easier With PCOS PCOS doesn’t have to rule your life. Although the condition can make coping more difficult, applying these health tips and tricks can enhance PCOS management.