Feeling a little anxious?

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Stop by a playground and hop on one of the swings. Or find a porch swing, rocking chair or hammock. Then spend two minutes swinging, rocking or swaying. The repetitive motion puts the nervous system into a more relaxed state and calms the amygdala… which is the brain region linked to stress and anxiety. In fact, swinging is so powerful, the University of Miami says just 2 minutes can reduce the output of stress hormones by 25% for 2 hours.

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Try this hack to help your allergies:

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Press your tongue against the roof of your mouth for 5 seconds. Then press a finger on the spot between your eyebrows for 5 seconds. Now, alternate back and forth a few times. That causes the vomer bone – which runs along your nasal passages – to rock back and forth. And that can relieve congestion in 20 seconds.

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This may be the most fun way to boost your immune system:

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Kiss your partner! According to the journal Microbiome, just 10 seconds of kissing can transfer 80 million germs from one person’s mouth to another’s. It sounds gross, but the health benefits are huge. Because when we’re exposed to other people’s germs, it helps us build immunity to those new germs. In fact, kissing could help protect a couple’s future babies from being infected in utero from viruses.

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We need to hang up the phone while driving.

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New research from The University of Sussex in England found that talking on the phone hands-free while driving is just as distracting and dangerous as using a hand-held phone. That’s because both types of conversations make drivers visualize what the other person is talking about… And as a result, drivers noticed fewer road hazardseven when they looked directly at them! The researchers say, the only safe car conversation is with a front seat passenger. Because they can be scanning for road hazards, too – and they know to stop talking when you need to concentrate.

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Feel fuller, longer!

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If you’d like to feel fuller, longer after you drink a smoothie – just add some oat bran to the mix… about 1/3 of a cup.
When volunteers drank smoothies, they felt significantly more satiated when it contained beta-glucan – a fiber found in oat bran… That’s compared to people who drank plain juice. Research says it’s because the fiber absorbs water, and slows digestion… And the slower we digest, the longer it takes to feel hungry again.

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At the nail salon – which is worse:

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Drying your nails under a UV light, or using an aerosol drying spray? Dermatologist Dr. Lindsay Shipp says: Go for the spray. Light-assisted drying can expose your hands to UV light for 10 minutes at a time – which can eventually lead to wrinkling, brown spots and even skin cancer. With the quick-dry spray, you may breathe in some chemicals, but the liquid only stays on your skin for 10 seconds before evaporating. Which makes the spray a much safer alternative.

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Reading is good for your mind!

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Did you know our mental powers decline 32% more slowly as we age if we read a book for about an hour every day? That’s according to researchers at Rush University Medical Center. They found that reading anything – from literature, to mysteries, to science fiction, to romance novelshelps preserve our memory… Because it keeps our brain active.

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Want to look younger, longer?

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Pop an antihistamine every night – even if you don’t have allergies. That’s the recommendation from dermatologists at Georgetown University Medical Center. It’s because antihistamines reduce the sinus inflammation that leads to puffy eyes… And they constrict blood vessels, which improves under-eye circles. Your best bet? A 24‑hour antihistamine that doesn’t include a decongestant. Within a month, the skin around your eyes will look better.
As with all medication, check with your doctor to see if you can take an antihistamine before you start.

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The secret to good hair is: Nuts!

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Almonds contain the B vitamin, biotin. And just a handful of almonds a day strengthens hair and prevents breakage.

Next: Cashews have an amino acid that triggers production of the protein keratin – which forms the inner layer of hair. And the thicker the layer of keratin, the healthier your hair will be.

And walnuts are a good source of copper, which improves hair’s elasticity.

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To beat a heat wave, have some Earl Grey tea on hand.

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But you don’t need to drink it – simply sniff a teabag. Yale University researchers found that taking 6 slow, deep whiffs of Earl Grey tea calms our amygdala – which is a region of the brain linked to stress and anxiety.
And when there’s a heat wave, the hot, oppressive weather is known to over-stimulate the amygdala, which is why we get easily irritated and anxious in sweltering weather. So the next time that happens to you, take 6 deep whiffs of Earl Grey, and you’ll be calmer in 2 minutes or less.

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