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Anna Almendrala
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Anna Almendrala is a Healthy Living editor for the Huffington Post. She was born in Manila, Philippines and grew up in New Zealand and California. She graduated from U.C. Berkeley in 2006 with a double major in Rhetoric and Spanish and has previously worked for Sojourners and Brave New Films. She lives with her husband in Los Angeles.

Entries by Anna Almendrala

Τέλος στην «κρυφή» ζάχαρη: Τι αλλάζει στις ετικέτες τροφίμων στην Αμερική;

(0) Comments | Posted May 23, 2016 | 11:49 AM

O οργανισμός FDA στην Αμερική, που είναι υπεύθυνος για τα τρόφιμα και τα φάρμακα, ανακοίνωσε πριν από μερικές μέρες τις βασικές αλλαγές που θα γίνουν στις ετικέτες των τροφίμων.

Είναι η πρώτη φορά τα τελευταία 20 χρόνια που γίνονται αλλαγές στις ετικέτες και αναμένεται ότι όλες οι ετικέτες θα έχουν...

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Χάσατε το κίνητρο για την γυμναστική; 7 τρόποι για να φορέσετε και πάλι τα αθλητικά σας

(0) Comments | Posted May 21, 2016 | 8:52 AM

Οι έρευνες έχουν δείξει ότι πρέπει να κάνουμε περίπου 150 λεπτά γυμναστική την εβδομάδα, αλλά λίγοι είναι εκείνοι που το τηρούν.

Είναι δύσκολο να διατηρήσει κανείς το κίνητρό του ζωντανό όσον αφορά τη σωματική άσκηση. Όσοι δεν γυμνάζονται νιώθουν ότι δεν έχουν αρκετό χρόνο ή ότι είναι πολύ κουρασμένοι...

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4 Major Changes Are Coming To Food Nutrition Labels

(0) Comments | Posted May 20, 2016 | 12:48 PM

The U.S. Food And Drug Administration has redesigned nutrition labels on food packages to show the amount of added sugar in a product.

It's the first redesign in nutrition labels in over 20 years, notes the FDA. Most food manufacturers will have to comply with the...

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Maria Shriver Wants To Remind You That Alzheimer's Is A Woman's Disease

(0) Comments | Posted May 19, 2016 | 1:37 PM

About 5 million Americans live with Alzheimer’s disease, and for most of them, symptoms first appeared after they turn 60. Age is the best known risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease; after the age of 65, the number of people with the condition doubles every five years

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Should You Keep Track Of Workout Calorie Counts?

(0) Comments | Posted May 18, 2016 | 9:30 PM

The Question: Just how accurate is the "calories burned" display on my treadmill? Should I keep track of how much I'm burning off if I'm trying to lose weight?

Answer: That number is just an estimate, and it's unclear whether knowing it will help you lose weight. 


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What The Government's Latest Asian-American Health Report Got Wrong

(0) Comments | Posted May 18, 2016 | 7:51 PM

Asian-Americans fare better than the general population on five different measures of health, according to a new national study. 

But though it may appear that the "model minority" myth about the 15 million Asians in America...

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'Magic' Mushrooms Show Promise Against Depression In First-Ever Trial

(0) Comments | Posted May 16, 2016 | 7:47 PM

"Magic mushrooms," the recreational hallucinogen long associated with music festivals and hippies, may also one day prove to have a powerful pharmaceutical effect for people with treatment-resistant depression.  

In a small pilot study at the Center for Neuropsychopharmacology at Imperial College London, more than half of...

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Bob Harper On That 'Biggest Loser' Study And Intermittent Fasting

(0) Comments | Posted May 13, 2016 | 2:47 PM

A recent study on past contestants on the weight loss reality show "The Biggest Loser" revealed that due to metabolic and hormonal changes that persist after massive weight loss, participants were burning hundreds of calories less than would...

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Have Trouble Sticking To Your Workouts? Here's How To Make Them Permanent.

(0) Comments | Posted May 12, 2016 | 7:50 PM

This is how good intentions start: A new gym membership or studio pass, new exercise clothes and a full schedule of classes to try.

You’re ready to be a better person who exercises regularly -- for health, for looks, for whatever. But old habits die hard. Even though...

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Regular Exercise Could Help Prevent Cervical Cancer In Women

(0) Comments | Posted May 12, 2016 | 2:42 PM

There are so many good reasons to be physically active, and a new study by researchers at Roswell Park Cancer Institute in New York suggests that avoiding cervical cancer may be one of them.

What we knew before:

Exercise can help lower the risk...

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Experts Say Texting Is Worse Than All Other Driving Distractions

(0) Comments | Posted May 11, 2016 | 5:17 PM

Texting while driving may pose a unique risk compared to other forms of distracted driving, according to an experiment recently published in the journal Scientific Reports.

Unlike driving while absent-minded or driving while emotional, driving while texting actually caused study participants to drive unsafely by deviating from...

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Brazil Should Not Host The Olympic Games, Public Health Expert Warns

(0) Comments | Posted May 11, 2016 | 2:50 PM

Because Brazil is at the heart of the current Zika virus epidemic, the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janiero should be postponed or moved to a new location, a leading expert in population health and global development argues in the Harvard Public Health...

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4 choses que les médecins aimeraient connaître au sujet de l'infertilité

(0) Comments | Posted May 10, 2016 | 9:44 AM

Selon le Centre américain pour le contrôle et la prévention des maladies, 12 % environ des Américaines en âge de procréer ont du mal à tomber et rester enceintes, et 7,5 % des hommes âgés de moins de 44 ans ont consulté un spécialiste de la fertilité. Pourtant, même si...

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When Sleep Deprivation Becomes A Public Health Hazard

(0) Comments | Posted May 9, 2016 | 7:53 PM

You probably know that drunk driving, drugged driving and distracted driving is dangerous. But the dangers of drowsy driving are less well known. Driving while sleepy is linked to about 83,000 crashes a year, according to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. On average,...

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Here's Why You Need A Strong Core

(0) Comments | Posted May 9, 2016 | 5:31 PM

A hunched back, forward-slouching shoulders and a forward-protruding head are signs that you’re either perfecting your Mr. Burns impression or you need to work on your core strength.

But don’t feel singled out -- we all have to work on our core strength continually, from the most sedentary office worker to the regular exerciser to the athlete, according to Chris Kolba, a sports medicine physical therapist at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. 

“Most people need to work on their core strength,” Kolba said. “Strength is not something that’s stored -- you continually have to work to maintain it.”

Having a strong core can improve your posture, protect you from back pain and help you lift, push and pull things more easily. But because of the mostly sedentary lifestyle we live, sitting at a desk for work, in our cars and watching TV, our core muscles are not as strong as they should be.

Over time, weak core muscles can lead to back pain, spinal injury, bad posture and difficulty doing simple movements like walking, bending over, lifting or carrying things.

For core strength, think beyond crunches

Before you roll out your yoga mat and get on the floor for some crunches, realize that the “core” encompasses more muscles beyond the abdominal “six-pack." Your core muscle group includes anything that helps stabilize the trunk and pelvis, says Kara Radzak, an associate professor with the Kinesiology and Nutrition Sciences department at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

In addition to your abs, this includes back muscles like the transverse abdominis, which lies under your obliques and wraps around the spine, the erector spinae muscles that run along the spine, and the muscles surrounding your pelvis, which include the gluteus maximus and gluteus medius.

Strength is not something that’s stored -- you continually have to work to maintain it.

Because of the number of different muscles involved in having a strong, stable core, crunches alone will not produce the results you want, Radzak explains. She advocates doing regular weight lifting exercises, like a squat or an overhead press, with an eye toward “engaging” the core muscles.

“One of the often overlooked things in developing good core strength is using the core muscles in all the other exercises that you do,” she said. “If you’re working out in general doing any type of strength training activity and you’re not engaging your entire core, then you’re not really gaining the [full] benefit of all those other exercises.” In practice, this means concentrating on good posture and drawing your bellybutton in toward your spine while lifting weights, so that your abdomen feels tightly pulled in. 

But if you want more ideas for exercises that specifically strengthen the core, Kolba highlights four of his favorites in the list below.

Four exercises for a stronger core:

1. Farmer’s Carry

For beginners, start off by carrying hand weights in each hand and walk for 15 to 20 yards. Do two to three sets of this walk, and as time goes on you can either extend the distance or increase the weight. This functional exercise trains you to carry heavy grocery bags or suitcases short distances. The amount of weight you use depends on your strength and coordination, but Kolba estimated that a healthy 145-pound woman might be able to start with ten pounds in each hand.

“This is going to create a downward load that your body is going to have to work against,” says Kolba. "You have a little bit of time on a single leg so it has really been shown to recruit your lateral hip muscles and your core muscles and it doesn't create a lot of excessive rotation, flexing or bending on the spine."

2. Resistance training with split legs

Pushing or pulling weight while standing with split legs is a safe, effective exercise for the core, says Kolba. The exercise mimics everyday movements in which you have to maintain your balance while pushing or pulling something heavy.

"Stand with one foot in front of the other so you have a little bit better ability to stabilize when you're pushing or pulling something," he advises. 

3. Planks

Lay face down on a mat and then prop up your body in a straight line on your toes and elbows. Keeping your core engaged, your spine straight and your pelvis drawn toward your front, try to remain in this position for 30 seconds at the beginning and then repeat two or three times. Ultimately, you want to try to get up to one minute in the plank position.

4. Side planks

A great variation on the plank is the side plank. Prop up your body on your right elbow and your right foot for 30 seconds, and then switch sides to your left elbow and foot. Remember to keep your spine straight and your pelvis drawn toward your front. To make the side plank more difficult, extend your free arm toward the ceiling.

To see more core strengthening exercises, watch the video below from DailyBurn 365

We want to help you feel stronger, happier and more empowered. Sign up for our newsletter and join our 30-Day Move More, Feel Better challenge. We’ll deliver tips, challenges and advice to your inbox every day.  

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4 choses que les médecins aimeraient connaître au sujet de l'infertilité

(0) Comments | Posted May 9, 2016 | 12:23 PM

Selon le Centre américain pour le contrôle et la prévention des maladies, environ 12% des Américaines en âge de procréer ont du mal à tomber et rester enceintes, et 7,5% des hommes âgés de moins de 44 ans ont consulté un spécialiste de la fertilité. Pourtant, même si elle est...

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(0) Comments | Posted May 7, 2016 | 10:31 PM


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This Type Of Birth Control Could Be Making You Crave Junk Food

(0) Comments | Posted May 5, 2016 | 7:00 PM

The best birth control is easy to use and effective, but nearly all of these medications can come with side effects. The Depo-Provera shot, an effective, discreet and easy to use hormonal birth control method that requires a shot once every three months, causes one in particular: Significant...

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Failure Is An Essential Element Of Success

(0) Comments | Posted May 5, 2016 | 2:38 PM

Last month, a Princeton professor tweeted an unusual version of his CV that listed all of the fellowships, grants, degree programs and publications from which he was rejected.

Johannes Haushofer, an assistant professor of psychology and public affairs, wrote this explanation as a preface to...

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Half Of Teens Say They Feel Addicted To Their Devices

(0) Comments | Posted May 3, 2016 | 5:59 PM

Research is still emerging about whether technology addiction fits the classic definition of an addiction disorder, but many people certainly feel addicted, according to a new survey.

Half of all teens reported feeling addicted to their mobile devices, and 28 percent said their parents are...

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