One of the things I love most about our Mondays With Marlo series is when our guest experts really surprise us with unexpected answers and little-known facts. For example, do you know what the ideal temperature is for optimal sleep? Did you know that a certain type of vegetable can help alleviate a migraine headache? And what about belly fat? Where does that come from?
Sometimes a single tip or piece of advice can completely change the way we think and act in terms of health and fitness, and that's why I love to have expert guests on our show who give us great tips that we can apply to our own lives.
So, to keep us all healthy and fit, we've put together a slideshow detailing some of the most interesting and unexpected facts that we've learned from our celebrity guests. Take a look and see if there isn't a tip or two in there that you can use to improve your own health and fitness.
<strong>Dark Chocolate Is Good For You</strong> Dark chocolate contains special antioxidants that can actually enhance heart health. Look for chocolate that is at least 70% cocoa, and then portion it to about one ounce a day. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/17/is-chocolate-healthy-from_n_960792.html?1315944706" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>You Don't Need All That Water</strong> We've all heard that we should drink eight glasses of water a day, but Dr. Oz says that's not necessarily so. He points out that we get much of our daily water requirement from the foods we eat. So, just drink enough water so that your urine is clear. That is the true sign of adequate hydration. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/14/health-expert-dr-oz-talks_n_876620.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>Foods for a Good Mood</strong> Certain foods and vitamins can actually help elevate your mood and alleviate some symptoms of mild depression. Among the most beneficial foods to lift your spirits are dark chocolate, salmon and dark-colored vegetables (such as peppers and broccoli.) <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/20/watch-foods-for-a-good-mo_n_1612094.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>Avoid the All-Juice Cleanse</strong> All-juice cleanses and fasts are very high in refined carbohydrates and they don't provide your body with any protein. Protein is what keeps your metabolism going so you can burn fat and keeps you feeling full. So, avoid juicing as a full-on diet, but adding it to your balanced diet is a good thing. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/13/juicing-for-health_n_1671204.html?1342192466" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>We Sleep Better When We Are Cold</strong> Half of American adults do not get enough sleep. And while many factors may play a part in that, one simple thing you can do to sleep better is lower the thermostat. The ideal temperature for sleep is around 68 degrees. If you're having trouble sleeping, drop it down to about 65 degrees. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/15/dr-oz-reveals-tips-for-ge_n_876667.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>Two Surprising Foods That Are Good for Your Eyesight</strong> We've all heard that carrots are great for the eyes, but spinach and salmon are actually two of the most beneficial foods for your eyesight. The combination of antioxidants in the spinach and the Omega 3 fats in the fish can strengthen and protect your eyes. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/10/joy-bauers-foods-for-eyesight_n_1663147.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>Surprising Reasons Behind Bad Breath</strong> While some foods like garlic can contribute to bad breath, chronic halitosis is usually rooted in other causes. It may be due to rotting tonsils, a bad tooth, stomach bacteria or a sinus infection. To find out, visit an ear, nose and throat specialist. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/18/watch-surprising-reasons-_n_1607436.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>Skim Milk is the Most Fattening Milk</strong> Dr. Oz really surprised us when he revealed that skim milk is more fattening than regular milk. When the fat is completely removed from milk, it becomes a sugar drink. He recommends going for 2% milk instead. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/10/marlo-thomas-mondays-with-marlo-the-most-fattening-foods-in-america-from-dr-oz_n_1765013.html?1344871264" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>Beans Can Alleviate Migraines</strong> While certain supplements can help alleviate migraines, beans are a surprising natural alternative. Black beans, kidney beans and chickpeas all are rich in magnesium, which plays a critical role in alleviating headaches. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/13/stop-migraines-with-food_n_1671876.html?1342204185" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>One Major Reason for Belly Fat</strong> Prolonged stress results in increased production of cortisol - our primary stress hormone. This increase in cortisol triggers an ancient biochemical reaction in us, and as a result, the body responds as if it is starving and automatically stores fat in the belly. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/10/marlo-thomas-mondays-with-marlo-the-real-reason-for-belly-fat-from-dr-oz_n_1764646.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>Alcohol is the Devil for Belly Fat</strong> While stress may be a major cause of belly fat, processed foods and alcohol make it even harder to lose. Aside from the sugar and the calories involved, it is the way in which alcohol is metabolized by the liver and its biochemical effects on your hormonal balance that contribute to the belly fat. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/11/alcohol-is-the-devil-for-_n_894659.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
Coconut Milk vs. Coconut Water Coconut milk is the liquid from the flesh part of the coconut and it is very, very high in calories and rich in saturated fat, so beware if you are trying to lose weight. Coconut water, on the other hand, is the clear liquid inside an immature coconut. That has about 45 calories a cup and has electrolytes, which is good for athletes. So, if you like it, go for it. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/13/coconut-water-coconut-milk_n_1671041.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>Hostility Poses Real Health Risks</strong> The stress of extended hostility - as opposed to regular anger, which comes and goes - can actually pose a health risk as dangerous as smoking when it comes to strokes. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/23/deepak-chopra-hostility-k_n_883045.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>Do Weight Training Before Cardio</strong> When you start your workout with weight training, you have more blood sugar in your system and that makes for a more effective muscle workout. Then after you've burnt through some of that blood sugar, your cardio exercise will theoretically burn a higher percentage of stored fat. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/07/11/the-effect-of-weight-trai_n_894653.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
<strong>Exercise in the Morning, Eat Afterwards</strong> It is important to have food in your system to work out, but if you exercise first thing in the morning, you can exercise before you eat. That way you'll burn more fat, because you don't have any carbs in your system to burn first. But right afterwards, you should eat a high protein, healthy fat breakfast. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/15/health-expert-dr-oz-share_n_876675.html" target="_hplink">Watch</a>
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