How Swimming Affects Your Body: Benefits and Risks | GETTIK

How Swimming Affects Your Body: Benefits and Risks | GETTIK

How Does Swimming Affect Your Body?

Individuals swim for a variety of reasons including recreation, competition, and health. Regardless of the reason, swimming can affect your body in a variety of ways — both good and bad.

A Low-Impact Sport

Swimming is a low-impact sport. Low-impact exercise can be good for the body because it offers the same health benefits as physically demanding, high-impact exercise without the stress and intensity placed on the body. Many individuals cannot take the impact that exercises or sports put on the body, so low-impact options offer low-weight bearing alternatives — such as swimming, dancing, yoga. High-impact activities offer great benefits, but they can also place additional stress and pressure on joints, muscles, and the body overall.

Physical Health Benefits

Swimming is associated with a variety of health benefits. Swimming utilizes all parts of the body, and an hour of swimming is comparable to an hour of running without the stress on your body. Since swimming is low-impact, almost all individuals can participate. Below are some of the health benefits of swimming:

 

  • Improved flexibility: When you swim you reach, stretch, turn, and pull your body through the water. In doing so, your body can become increasingly flexible. Most swimmers also stretch pre- and post-swim for extra flexibility.
  • Increased endurance: As you make swimming a routine, you should start to see your endurance improve.
  • Stronger lungs: Swimming requires proper breathing techniques. By performing aerobic exercises, you are activating large muscle groups that require large amounts of oxygen to perform. By activating these large muscle groups, you can work to increase lung capacity and strength.
  • Good for asthma: Holding your breath, expanding your lungs, and gaining control over your breathing can help reduce asthma symptoms. The humid environment of indoor pools may also help people with asthma.
  • Helps maintain a healthy weight: Aerobic exercise helps keep the heart rate up and burns calories. This can help individuals maintain a healthy weight.
  • Tones muscles and builds strength: Swimming utilizes all of the muscles in the body. You are constantly working to keep your body above water and moving forward. When you do this, you are burning calories, and working direct muscle groups to help improve definition and muscle strength.

Mental Health Benefits

According to Mindwise, swimming can boost your mental health because when you swim, your body releases endorphins to your brain that increase positivity, well-being, and happiness. When this happens, you are prone to improved moods, decreased levels of depression and anxiety, and decreased cognitive decline. When you work out, you may burn calories and improve muscle tone. When you see these positive results, your self-esteem can be boosted, and high-self esteem can bolster a variety of mental health benefits.

Potential Risks of Swimming

Just like most anything, there are potential risks that you expose yourself to when swimming. This is especially true for daily swimmers and competitive swimmers. The primary risks of swimming include water illness, hair loss, and headaches.

Water Illnesses

According to the CDC, Recreational Water Illnesses (RWIs) refer to the infections that are passed through germs that are present in the water you swim in. RWIs can also be caused by improper chemicals in water, or chemicals that evaporate from the water that taint air quality in aquatic facilities. They are spread by consumption of or contact with contaminated water in pools, hot tubs, water parks, interactive fountains, lakes, rivers, or oceans. RWI infections include:

 

  • Diarrheal illness;
  • Rashes;
  • Ear infections;
  • Respiratory infections;
  • Chemical irritation (eyes, lungs).

Tight Swim Caps and Goggles

Tight swim caps and tight goggles can cause a variety of issues for the head — specifically the temples, hair, and scalp. Tight swims caps and goggles have the following risks:

 

  • General rubbing/discomfort: In order to work properly, swim caps and goggles need to be pulled tight. By doing this, you create a good amount of pressure on your skull, temples, and eyes;
  • “Swimmer’s headache,” or supraorbital neuralgia: In a case studied by John C. O’Brien (MD), a young swimmer felt painful hair and tenderness surrounding his supraorbital nerve that turned out to be supraorbital neuralgia;
  • Hair loss/thinning: When you force your hair into an unnatural position — such as putting your hair up, tucking your hair into a hat, or wearing a swim cap — you increase your chances of hair loss, thinning, and traction alopecia.

 

Swimming without caps and goggles can seem impossible — especially for those with long or sensitive hair, or competitive swimmers. There are several ways to mitigate or reduce the issues:

 

Competitive Swimming

Competitive swimming is a popular sport, but more and more medical staff are needing to provide medical care for swimmers. Additional to the risks of swimming that are listed above, competitive swimmers are at risk for:

 

  • Musculoskeletal overuse injuries;
  • Overtraining;
  • Respiratory issues;
  • Dermatologic conditions.

How To Live a Healthy Lifestyle: Tips and Tricks | GETTIK

How To Live a Healthy Lifestyle: Tips and Tricks | GETTIK

Lifestyle Tips For Better Overall Health

The way you go about your daily life has a massive and direct impact on your wellbeing. Nearly everything, from what and when you eat to how many hours you work in a day, can influence your health. However, as many as 97.3% of American adults do not live a healthy lifestyle, which has frightening implications for long-term health outcomes and overall longevity.

Fortunately, your lifestyle is based entirely on your individual choices. You have the power to make changes and take control of your health. Whether you’re looking to completely overhaul your lifestyle or find new ways to keep improving, there are a few adjustments you can make to your lifestyle for better overall health:

Eat Healthy Foods

The food you eat plays a huge role in your wellbeing. Your diet can affect virtually every aspect of your short- and long-term health, from your mental health to your risk of developing certain diseases and chronic conditions. Your diet can even affect your hair,potentially causing it to fall out or promoting its growth. Because your diet is so significant to your wellbeing, it’s crucial to eat nutritious foods so your mind and body have all of the power they need to function optimally. 

A balanced diet full of nutritious foods looks different from person to person, depending on lifestyle, current health needs, and future health goals. Generally, you should focus on getting as much nutrition from your diet as possible, being mindful of your cravings, limiting your intake of heavily processed foods, and avoiding potentially dangerous fad diets. For many people, this involves eating more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean sources of protein. Always take your specific dietary needs and preferences into account, as what works for someone else may not work for you.

Stay Hydrated

Everyone needs water just to survive, but drinking the right amount of water can help you thrive. Staying properly hydrated has myriad benefits, such as boosting your mood and helping with weight loss. Dehydration, on the other hand, can have negative health consequences, including headaches and migraines, constipation, and decreased cognitive function. In severe cases of dehydration, you may even need medical attention. 

It can be difficult to know exactly how much water you should drink each day to stay hydrated. There is no single answer, as the amount of water you drink will likely vary from day to day, depending on factors like the weather or your level of activity. It’s commonly said that you should drink eight eight-ounce glasses of water per day, but that is an average. Try to drink something whenever you feel thirsty throughout the course of the day.

Exercise Regularly

Regular exercise is another way to improve your overall health and wellbeing. Its physical health benefits include increased muscle strength and bone density, pain reduction, and lowered risk of developing chronic diseases. Exercise also has a number of effects on mental health, such as improved mood, increased energy levels, and boosted cognitive function. Additionally, regular exercise can increase your life expectancy, possibly by several years.

To benefit from exercising, you don’t need to commit to a serious workout or spend hours per day at the gym. Any amount of physical activity, regardless of the level of intensity or duration, can be good for you. Further, try to find a form of exercise that you actually like to do, as this makes it easier to incorporate it into your routine. For example, swimming has countless health benefits, but if you dread going to the pool, you may forgo exercising altogether because of how much you dislike it. Exercise shouldn’t be a chore —  ideally, it should be a fun way to take care of yourself and improve your health.

Go Outdoors

The world around you has a huge impact on your wellbeing; even the weather outside can affect you physically, mentally, and socially. A growing body of research suggests there are many ways being outside can benefit your health, including lowering your risk of developing chronic conditions, improving the duration and quality of sleep, and reducing feelings of stress and anxiety. There also appears to be a synergistic effect when humans exercise in nature, leading to greater stress reduction, improved physical performance while exercising, and increased mood and self-esteem. However, you don’t have to exercise outdoors, as simply sitting or spending time in nature can still provide these benefits. 

Conversely, not going outdoors can pose risks to your wellbeing. Whether for work or school, many people spend much of their time inside, but doing so may have the opposite effects of going outdoors, especially when it comes to your mood. If you have to spend most of your time inside, make an effort to incorporate outdoors time into your schedule. Going for short walks, eating lunch outdoors, or biking to work are simple ways you can get outside on a daily basis.

Get Plenty of Sleep

Sleep is just as important to your health as eating a balanced diet or exercising regularly, but as many as one-third of American adults don’t get enough sleep. Sleep deprivation has short-term health consequences that can interfere with your daily life, such as impairing your judgment and affecting your memory. There are also long-term issues that can come from chronic sleep deprivation, including being at greater risk of developing mental illness and overall poor quality of life.

Generally, adults need between seven and nine hours of rest each night, but the actual amount of sleep you need can vary depending on a number of factors like your age and current state of health. If you have a medical condition or illness that interferes with your sleep, you may need to consult your doctor for a solution. Otherwise, prioritize sleep as much as possible. Exercising regularly, being mindful of your caffeine intake, and going to bed at the same time every night are all simple but effective ways that can make it easier to fall and stay asleep.

Balance Work and Life

Finally, do your best to find a balance between your work and your personal life. Work is important, but so is enjoying your life, your hobbies, and your personal relationships. If you are constantly focused on or stressed out about work, you may disregard these other areas of your life. This deprives you of the opportunity to unwind and can result in chronic feelings of stress, both at work and at home. 

Chronic or long-term stress can also have negative effects on your mind and body, including anxiety, depression, heart problems, skin issues, and hair loss. You can always talk to a doctor or the appropriate specialist about treating your symptoms — for instance, consulting a trichologist about your hair loss or seeing a mental health professional to treat anxiety — but the root cause of your stress will still be an issue. Neglecting to address the source of your stress may end up making these symptoms worse or long-term problems in and of themselves. This is why it’s necessary to set boundaries for yourself between your work and your personal life: to prevent these problems from developing in the first place.

When it comes to improving your health, the most important thing you can do is find ways to adjust your lifestyle that work well for you. It’s your health and wellbeing, and you’re the only person who knows what’s best for you. 

Job Interview Tips and Tricks | GETTIK

Job Interview Tips and Tricks | GETTIK

How To Make a Good Impression in a Job Interview

When it comes to getting a job, interviewing may seem like a secondary concern compared to your skills and education. However, the impression you make during an interview is extremely important because recruiters often use that opportunity to assess who you are and how seriously you take the job opportunity. 

Employers often want to feel confident that you will be a reliable employee and a good fit for the company as much as they want to know your credentials. Fortunately, there are some basic steps you can take to significantly improve your interview game, whether the process comes naturally to you or not.

Come Prepared

The best way to appear well put together is to actually be well put together. Don’t wait until the last minute to prepare for the interview. It will likely not only result in some oversights on your part, but may also add to your stress as you try to rehearse key information and talking points. 

Complete tasks such as doing preemptive research and choosing your interview outfit well in advance. Then run through a quick review of important details shortly before the actual interview. This will help you more successfully retain important information, prevent last-minute mishaps, and boost your confidence.

Know What Position You’re Interviewing For

It is important to both have knowledge relevant to job performance in your desired position, and to understand what the position entails. Some simple ways you can convey this knowledge base to the recruiter include the following:

  • Provide concrete examples of relevant education and experience. Discuss any education or experience you have in your background that relates to the duties that you would be expected to perform in your desired role. For example, if you are applying for a marketing position, you could mention the outreach you worked on for a charity. 
  • Actively demonstrate your knowledge. Make it clear that you understand key concepts in the course of the conversation. For example, you may want to use terminology specific to the field.
  • Ask good questions. Ask questions that showcase your existing knowledge and show an interest in learning more. For example, you could mention you noticed that experience with a certain software was a desired quality for the position, and ask how that software would be utilized in your day-to-day work.

Research the Company You’re Interviewing With

You will also want to demonstrate knowledge about the company itself and its operations. This will further reinforce how serious you are about pursuing this position, and your interest in the company. Effective strategies for demonstrating this knowledge are similar to those described above: conversational evidence of your knowledge base and emphasis through calculated questions. The following are some examples of questions that could convey your knowledge and interest regarding company matters during an interview:

  • “I notice [the company] has expanded over the past few years. What new directions do you expect the business to take, if any?”
  • “You commonly collaborate with other companies. What sort of companies do you typically work with in terms of industry, size, etc.?”
  • “How does this company set itself apart from the rest of its industry?”

However, while such questions are usually appreciated, it is important to make it evident that they are coming from a place of interest and excitement. You do not want to seem as though you are grilling the interviewer.

Find the Interviewer on LinkedIn

It is also a good idea to familiarize yourself with the interviewer themselves if possible. A good resource for this is LinkedIn. Their LinkedIn profile (if they have one) can give you a good idea of their credentials and what to expect.

Look Good and Dress Appropriately

A neat appearance tells the interviewer that you are a person who knows how to present themselves in a professional environment. It also tells them that you are taking the interview seriously enough to put a lot of time and effort into your appearance. The following are some basic steps you can take to dress appropriately and otherwise prepare your appearance for your interview:

  • Practice basic hygiene (bathe, use deodorant, brush your teeth, etc.);
  • Consider a haircut;
  • Groom your hair;
  • Trim your nails;
  • Keep accessories, makeup, nail polish, etc. subtle;
  • Choose well-fitting clothing with no signs of wear;
  • Wash your clothing;
  • Iron your clothing;
  • Use a lint roller;
  • Take the time to dress neatly.

It is important to consider the position you are applying for when choosing your clothing, accessories, etc. for the interview. Just as it would be a mistake to wear sweatpants to almost any interview, it would also be a bit off-base to wear a 3-piece suit to interview for a position as a cashier at a grocery store. The idea is to look tidy and professional.

Furthermore, you should consider what the expectations for traditional professionalism are. Although some level of professionalism is expected for most jobs, some positions are more casual than others. For example, it would generally not be a good move to display extensive tattooing, use bold accessories, or wear any non-business attire to apply for a job at a legal firm, but those items may be fine for an interview at a comic shop.

While it is important to keep these notes in mind, don’t stress yourself out by over-thinking it. Just focus on keeping yourself clean and tidy. Keep in mind that some self-care issues may take more than the morning-of to address, such as recurring skincare problems (like breakouts) or a receding hairline. If items like these are a concern for you, there are some long-term steps you can take to prepare for future interviews, such as the regular use of a skincare routine, or the application of hair growth products.

Prepare for Common Interview Questions

There are certain questions that are commonly asked in interviews, and it will be helpful to prepare for some of these. These include:

  • “What are your strengths/weaknesses?”
  • “Where did you hear about our company/this position?”
  • “How did you solve an instance of conflict at your previous job?”

Practicing your responses to such questions can help you feel more confident during the interview. However, it should also be noted that the interviewer likely expects you to be nervous, and it is not the end of the world if you hesitate or misspeak occasionally. Your preparation should bolster your confidence, rather than undermine it.

Be Yourself

As much as there are some widely-accepted “rules” to follow during an interview, you also want to leave a strong impression and set yourself apart from other candidates. To this end, you should show some of your personality and unique perspectives. Furthermore, there is some contradictory advice out there on how to behave in an interview. So, when in doubt, follow your best judgment and do what feels right to you. 

Follow Up After the Interview

Following up after the interview can show the company how interested you are in the position, and prevent you from getting lost in the shuffle. However, you do not want to be too aggressive in your follow-up either. Calling or emailing every day, for example, may be too much. Once a week or so is a more appropriate time frame. Follow-up is also a great idea if the company has not contacted you by the time they said they would. 

What Causes Hair Loss in Women? | GETTIK

What Causes Hair Loss in Women? | GETTIK

Why Is My Hair Falling Out? 5 Causes of Hair Loss in Women

While going through your morning routine and brushing your hair, it’s possible you may notice more hair left in your brush than you’re used to. Some hair loss is normal, but if you begin to notice signs of balding — including overall thinning at the top of your head, notable bald spots, or clumps of hair falling out — it can leave you feeling alarmed and distressed. These feelings can seriously impact your self-image and confidence.

Hair loss can often be thought of as a strictly male condition, but a large percentage of those who experience it are women. In fact, as noted in research published in Clinical Interventions in Aging, just under half of all women go through life with a full head of hair. Nevertheless, the perception that hair loss only affects males can leave women impacted by it in a difficult situation.

There are many different causes of hair loss in women, and addressing the situation requires identifying which apply to you. This article will discuss five of the most common causes of hair loss, then provide advice on mitigating them. Read on to learn how you can take control of this condition.

Certain Hairstyles

Anyone who has worn a ponytail for a long period of time knows about the annoyance of “ponytail headaches.” However, it’s important to understand that the constant pulling associated with a hairstyle like this may lead to hair loss. This is because certain hairstyles can cause traction alopecia — a form of hair loss caused by pulling of the scalp, which weakens the hair root and follicle.

There are many signs that your hairstyle is causing too much stress on your hair. These include:

  • Hair loss, sometimes resulting in a receding hairline;
  • Signs of thin or broken hair in areas where your hair is tied;
  • Small pimples or ulcers on your scalp, often at the base of where your hair is tied;
  • Itching or redness on your scalp;
  • Scarred skin on your scalp (these areas may look “shiny”).

Avoid These Hairstyles to Prevent Hair Loss

 To avoid this type of hair loss, consider changing up your hairstyle and avoid putting undue stress on your hair follicles. Tight ponytails, braids, or buns can lead to traction alopecia. The excessive use of hair extensions, wefts, or clip-ins can also cause hair loss over time.

The way you take care of your hair can also impact your hair health. Brush rollers, when applied too tightly, can cause alopecia. Even regular brushing can cause hair loss if done too vigorously.

Instead of regularly doing the above, try to find alternative ways to style your hair. Women with straight hair can simply wear it behind or over their shoulders, and loose braids are still not out of the question. Those with curly hair might try wearing their hair naturally. These are only a few examples of your options going forward.

If you’ve experienced notable hair loss, you might find that your styling options are limited. In this case, it can be wise to invest in hair growth shampoo or hair thickening fibers. These can improve the appearance of your hair and widen your hairstyling options.

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Dietary Issues

A poor diet can lead to malnutrition. This refers to deficiencies in your vitamin and mineral intake that can lead to major side effects like weak muscles and bones, a compromised immune system, and hair loss.

Are you starting to experience hair loss? It may be time to assess your diet for any gaps in your caloric, protein, vitamin, and mineral intake. Nutrients that are associated with hair health include:

  • Protein;
  • Calories;
  • Antioxidants;
  • Biotin;
  • Selenium;
  • Vitamin A (though too much can cause hair loss);
  • Vitamin C;
  • Vitamin D.

Get All the Vitamins and Minerals You Need for Hair Health

In order to address this cause of hair loss, it can help to ensure you’re getting a well-rounded diet, complete with the nutrition you need to mitigate the effects of hair loss. This means a diet rich in natural foods — primarily high-fiber carbs, fruits, veggies, and lean meats. Ensure that you are getting enough food each day and that you’re limiting junk foods.

Seek to include foods with nutrients that you’ve neglected. For instance, androgenetic alopecia and telogen effluvium, two conditions commonly associated with female pattern baldness, may be mitigated with increased intake of vitamin D, according to research. Foods high in this vitamin, like dairy products, fatty fish, or eggs, are useful additions to your diet to address this issue. Most multivitamins include this as well.

Of course, it’s always wise to discuss any dietary changes with your doctor. It may be beneficial to consult with your physician or nutritionist to discuss appropriate diet changes or supplements to address this issue. They may be able to help you assess your diet, identify gaps in your vitamin/mineral intake, and determine which foods or supplements may be able to help you maintain optimal hair health.

Extreme Stress

It’s not uncommon for women to experience some degree of hair loss after stressful events. This is evident in women who have undergone traumatic events such as giving birth (though hormonal changes are also to blame for this) or experiencing abuse.

To glean why this occurs, it’s important to understand how hair grows. Human hair follicles undergo several phases throughout their lifecycle. It starts in its anagen phase — the longest phase at up to seven years and also the time during which your hair grows in length. This is followed by a transition phase and a resting phase. Finally, it sheds during its exogen phase, which occurs to roughly 100 hairs each day for the average human.

Stress disrupts this cycle. According to an article published in The Atlantic titled “Why Stress Makes Your Hair Fall Out:

“Stress is thought to disrupt this process, prematurely kicking hairs out of the growth period. Rather than leaving anagen at their own pace, they all go through the resting phase at the same time and fall out together in bigger numbers — up to 10 times more than usual … “

Stress can, as a result of this disruption, cause several different types of hair loss, including telogen effluvium, alopecia areata, and trichotillomania.

Follow These Stress-Management Tips

While some level of stress is inevitable in life, there are a few ways you can reduce stress during and after traumatic periods:

  • Exercise regularly: When we are stressed, our brains are telling our bodies that we need to act. This results in a prolonged fight-or-flight response with no method of release, which can dramatically worsen the symptoms of stress. Physical activity allows us to release this energy.
  • Practice gratitude: Feeling grateful can alleviate feelings of anxiety that accompany stress. Take some time each day to create a list of things you are grateful for, then reflect on it.
  • Improve your diet: In addition to handling any potential nutritional deficiencies — a potential cause of hair loss, as discussed above — a balanced diet can decrease feelings of nervousness and sadness.

These are just a few of the methods you can employ to manage stress and, hopefully, mitigate its potential impacts on your hair health.

Toxins or Medications

Certain toxins, medications, or medical procedures can also lead to hair loss. In certain circumstances, hair loss is an expected side effect, as is the case with many individuals who undergo chemotherapy.

There are many types of drugs that may cause hair loss, and WebMD has a comprehensive list of them. Among the items on this list, you’ll find:

There are many more examples, and each has been linked to hair loss in some instances, though further research is required to understand why this is the case.

Finding Alternative Medications

Hair loss can be an alarming symptom, but it is vital to discuss your symptoms with your physician before discontinuing the use of certain medications. Maintain an ongoing dialogue with your doctor about symptoms as they occur; keeping a log of your side effects is a useful practice for this purpose. Your doctor may also be able to help you determine whether your hair loss is indeed related to the medication in question. If it is, they should be able to work with you to discover an alternative medication that does not cause hair loss.

Heredity

If the cause of your hair loss is not associated with one of the above factors, it may be connected to your genetics. If your family has a history of hair loss, you may also be susceptible to it. This is a diagnosable condition, so it’s important to bring this up with your doctor.

One of the most common forms of hair loss is due to hereditary-pattern baldness. This is a natural condition caused by a combination of genetic, hormone, and age-related factors. This type of baldness starts with thinning hair, then progresses over time to complete hair loss. For women, the most common place for hair loss to occur on the top of the head, down the middle — it may appear that the part of your hair is widening.

How to Address Hair Loss Due to Your Genes

While this cause of hair loss if out of your control, you can still take action to mitigate its effects. Certain medications, such as minoxidil, can slow further hair loss. There are also many professional hair thickening products that can keep your hair looking and feeling healthy, even if your genetics are working against you.

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Unexpected Side Effects of Weight Loss | GETTIK

Unexpected Side Effects of Weight Loss | GETTIK

4 Weight Loss Side Effects Most People Don’t Expect

Whether you’re starting a weight loss journey or you’re in the middle of one, you’re probably focussed on achieving an end goal — whether that be a number on the scale, the ability to run a marathon, or seeing certain health benefits. However, what you might not hear about as much is what happens to your body after weight loss. Once you’ve reached your goal, what can you expect? Below are four side effects of weight loss that may shape the end of your journey.

Loose Skin

Loose or excess skin can be a side effect of weight loss, especially for those who have gone through significant weight loss, either due to surgery or as a potential side effect of certain treatments like chemotherapy. Loose skin can be a serious side effect for those who struggle with body dysmorphia. If this is a concern or side effect that you’re experiencing, there are a few ways that you can tighten loose skin during and after weight loss:

Exercise

You can tailor your exercise to decrease the appearance of loose skin by focusing on building muscle mass, which can tighten the skin around areas of focus. Moderating your exercise and not pushing yourself too hard too quickly, allowing the skin time to shrink, can also help prevent loose skin during and after weight loss.

Diet

Increasing your intake of certain nutrients, like Vitamin C can help improve collagen production in the body, which can improve the skin’s elasticity during weight loss. Before you add multivitamins or supplements to your diet, do some research and talk to your health care professionals to make sure you’re doing right by your body.

Hydration

Dehydration can cause the skin to tighten and lose elasticity, making it stretch more. The average person should drink around eight glasses of water a day, but if you’re exercising more than usual or recovering from surgery, you could benefit from closer to 10 to 12 glasses a day to replenish lost electrolytes due to sweat or stress.

Cosmetic Surgery

Depending on the severity of your loose skin, getting cosmetic surgery to remove or reshape it could improve your quality of life. It’s important to note that this is an option with a price tag —  the American Society of Plastic Surgeons reported in 2016 that surgeon fees for an abdominal tuck cost an average of $5,798. This number does not include hospital fees, anesthesia or prescription costs, or any post-care requirements. And like all surgery, there is the risk of complications such as infection and scarring. However, if this feels like the right option for you, consult with your doctor to explore any possible risks.

Hair Loss

While weight loss generally does not directly cause hair loss or alopecia, it can lead to telogen effluvium, which is a condition that can cause temporary thinning and shedding of hair. Increased stress, both emotional and physical, can also cause a thinning or shedding of hair. In most cases, hair loss associated with weight loss is temporary, but there are steps you can take to help treat it as it arises:

Natural Remedies

There are several ways to regrow your hair with natural remedies found both over-the-counter or right at home, including scalp massage, essential oils, and drinking more water.

Cosmetic Remedies

Remedies like hair growth shampoo and hair thickening fibers can help reduce the appearance of hair loss, and are semi-permanent, allowing you the flexibility to stop application whenever you’re happy with your results. You can also use wigs or hairpieces, which are entirely nonpermanent.

Feeling Unusually Cold

Weight loss can lead to a natural decrease in metabolic activity. Because your metabolism doesn’t have to burn as much energy to keep your body moving, you may feel a change in your core temperature. Changes in your metabolism can result in many effects, but a persistent feeling of being cold is common. To manage this, you can try some of the known ways to improve your metabolic health:

Food Tracking

Useful for more than just counting calories, tracking what you eat, how much, and when can help you get a big-picture view on your daily nutrition. Eating around the same time every day can help train your metabolism to be more consistent, along with supplementing your diet with plenty of B vitamins — found in bananas, baked potatoes, eggs, peas, lean meats, and whole grains.

High-Intensity Interval Training

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) exercises are categorized by shortened, intense periods of activity followed by short periods of rest. HIIT exercise can help train your metabolism to burn fat instead of carbs for energy, which can cut down on food cravings as well as improve your metabolism health.

Improve Your Sleep

Sleep deprivation can impair your ability to metabolize glucose, causing you to produce less insulin, and have less energy to fuel your cells. This can increase feelings of fatigue, lethargy, and can increase the hormone responsible for making you hungry (ghrelin) later in the day. You can improve your REM sleep — which is the deep sleep cycle that your body needs to restore itself — by limiting screen time before bed, refraining from eating after 10 p.m., and keeping a consistent nighttime routine.

Personal Relationship Change

One 2013 study conducted by researchers at North Carolina State University found “when one partner in a romantic relationship loses weight, it doesn’t always have a positive effect on the relationship.” The study goes on to state that in their survey of 21 couples where one partner had lost 30 pounds or more, the other partner reported feeling threatened or insecure as a result of their partner’s weight loss. This is why it’s important to communicate why your weight loss journey is significant to you, and how you and your inner circle can support each other during this time of change. Below are a few tips on how to build support in your relationships:

Re-establish Common Ground

Even if you’re personally experiencing changes, it’s important to take some time to revisit or re-establish the things that brought your relationship together in the first place. Whether there’s a certain type of movie you both enjoy or a place that is special to you, make time for those connections again. It’s important to note that these activities don’t have to be food or body-centric. The presence of effort and compromise on both sides can help preserve or strengthen a relationship.

Keep in Touch With “You”

While your relationships might be changing or experiencing stress, it’s important to keep yourself grounded. Remind yourself that your worth is not inherently connected to you acting, looking or feeling a certain way about yourself. Mindfulness and meditation can be helpful tools for building self-confidence and staying connected with yourself during times of change.

Focus on Sustainable Weight Loss — Not Rapid Weight Loss

These side effects, and others, are worse in those who focus on rapid weight loss — whether through dangerous fad diets, supplements that aren’t approved by the FDA or prescribed by a medical professional, or self-harm techniques like starving yourself or purging — rather than sustainable weight loss. The promises of rapid weight loss can be alluring, however rapid weight loss techniques can be dangerous to your physical and mental health.

You deserve to feel good about the way you look, and that shouldn’t have to come at the cost of your mental comfort, your relationships, or your budget. With these tips in mind, anyone can achieve sustainable weight loss and manage the less expected side effects in a healthy and fulfilling way.

Sweets, Salts, and Other Food Cravings Explained | GETTIK

Sweets, Salts, and Other Food Cravings Explained | GETTIK

What Do Food Cravings Mean, and How Can You Stop Them?

Food cravings can come from a variety of places and mean many different things. You can crave certain foods due to medical reasons, like nutrient deficiencies. Sleep and lifestyle may also affect your food cravings — even exposure on social media can affect cravings. Broken down below are common types of food cravings, their causes, and what you can do to keep cravings from controlling your diet.

Types of Food Cravings & Their Cause

Food cravings happen for a variety of reasons — from the nebulous something-sweet-after-a-nice-meal, to the specific chicken tacos from the food truck across the street from your first apartment. Because there’s such a large range in cravings, we’re going to narrow it down to five categories  —  salt, sugar, carbs, fat, and unusual foods — and talk about the potential psychological and biological reasons you’re experiencing cravings.

Sugar

The insatiable sweet tooth is a struggle that many people can identify with. This is because sugar — especially artificial sugar like fructose — is chemically addictive. When you eat processed sugar, it releases dopamine, a feel-good hormone, which can cause the brain and body to associate sugar consumption with comfort or reward. This makes forming an addictive sugar habit relatively easy, and can make sugar cravings particularly tough to deal with.

Salt

Salt cravings can come from several places, some of which are surprising. Dehydration and electrolyte imbalance due to exercise or illness can cause salt cravings, as you lose sodium and electrolytes through your sweat, urine, and other bodily waste. Stress or premenstrual syndrome (PMS), can cause salt cravings as well.

Carbohydrates

Cravings for carbohydrates found in breads, donuts, pastries, and crackers are usually the result of high insulin. High levels of insulin can lead to carb cravings, as it burns carbohydrates instead of fats as energy. This can deprive other cells in your body of energy, which can cause you to feel hungry, or signal the supposed-need for more carbs.

Fat

The motivation behind cravings for fatty foods on a biological level are still under scrutiny by medical researchers. However, many behavioral scientists have found that following a strict low-fat diet can increase your fatty cravings. A reason extreme or exclusionary diets, most commonly seen in fad diets, might increase our cravings for the foods we’re trying to avoid is due to a built-up idealization of that food, memories associated with it, or unhappiness associated with being on a diet. This phenomenon is still unclear on a chemical level, and currently being discussed by researchers.

Unusual Cravings

If you’re craving something you’ve never had before, or an unusual combination of foods — pickles and peanut butter, for example — there could be a few reasons. A change in your hormones can change your palate, so if you’re pregnant, experiencing menopause, or undergoing any hormone-based treatments, you may find yourself craving something unusual to you. Unusual cravings coupled with other symptoms, like thinning hair or fatigue, might point to malnutrition or vitamin deficiency. These types of cravings can extend to foods with no nutritional value like ice — or non-edible foods. If you suddenly find yourself craving a raw steak, you may be low in iron or B12. Talk to your doctor to see if taking a multivitamin is a good idea for you to supplement any nutrient deficiencies that could be causing persistent unusual cravings.

How to Reduce Food Cravings

If you’re not experiencing cravings that are a result of nutrient deficiency or hormone changes, then there are quite a few strategies you can use to reduce or change your food cravings.

Plan Out Your Meals for a Well-Rounded Diet

Having a healthy meal plan can help manage your unhealthy cravings. Meal plans help bypass the instant gratification we can crave from junk food by making healthy, nutrient-rich food as accessible as junk food. There are plenty of services that you can use to help you meal plan, from blogs to paid subscription boxes, that focus on cutting costs and effort, as well as cutting down on cravings.

Avoid Addictive Foods

While you can become addicted to any kind of food, for a number of psychological reasons, some foods have a chemically higher chance of getting you hooked. Drinks especially high in artificial sugar or caffeine, like soda, energy drinks, and flavored coffees, can be incredibly addictive; high-fat snack foods, like french fries or potato chips can be addictive as well. Finding healthier snack alternatives, like air-popped popcorn or 100% fruit juice can help you cut down on unhealthy snacking and curb future cravings.

Stay Hydrated

Staying hydrated can reduce your cravings, as the part of your brain that interprets hunger signals, the hypothalamus, also interprets thirst signals. Eight glasses of water a day is the recommended amount. Keeping a water bottle around or infusing your water with fruit slices can help you stay hydrated and stop cravings throughout the day.

Don’t Go Too Long Without Eating

This might seem counterintuitive when trying to cut down on cravings, but going too long without eating can actually worsen your cravings for unhealthy foods.This is because going too long without eating puts your body in survival mode, and the instant gratification or accessibility of junk food becomes a strong draw. If you have a small snack in between your meals — like a handful of nuts or a piece of fruit — you’ll feel more satisfied throughout the day. Eating small snacks between meals can also help you avoid choosing fast food over cooking at home, as you won’t feel such a strong need for something immediate.

Improve Your Sleep Habits

If you find yourself falling victim to late-night cravings, you may not be getting enough sleep. Sleep is essential for your metabolism to function properly, and for your frontal lobe to engage in the complex decision judgment that allows us to prioritize eating healthy. Sleep-deprivation can worsen caffeine and sugar addiction, so if you want to decrease your cravings, start with getting some more shut-eye.

Is It Wise to Follow Your Cravings?

When considering indulging your cravings, be sure to keep moderation in mind. Indulging once in a while on a chocolate cupcake or a bowl of chips isn’t evil, and, in fact, can be a great way to reward yourself. However, the danger of letting your cravings dictate your diet can manifest in two extreme ways: binge eating and food addiction.

Binge Eating

Binge eating is a type of eating disorder that can be, but isn’t necessarily, followed by purging (the coupling of these two habits resulting in bulimia). Like binge drinking, binge eating occurs when you frequently consume large quantities of food past your “full” level. Whether as a way to distract from boredom, used as a coping mechanism, or a result of food insecurity, binge eating can lead to further serious eating disorders, and associate feelings of shame or depression with fueling your body.

Food Addiction

While this may sound harmless, food addiction can be a very serious illness, and a precursor to obesity, eating disorders, and other serious mental and physical health conditions. Like many addictions, food addiction is often used as a coping mechanism. Binge eating can be a part of food addiction, as choosing to overindulge can make those suffering from it feel empowered in their circumstance, or comforted from a traumatic experience. Food addiction can stem from socio-economic status, PTSD, and stress factors.

It is important when considering food and food cravings to listen to your body’s needs, not just its wants. If you have consistent cravings for one particular food, this could be a sign of malnutrition or vitamin deficiency. Besides consistent cravings, symptoms of malnutrition may include:

  • Fatigue;
  • Fogginess;
  • Hair loss;
  • Depression;
  • Trouble concentrating.

If you’re experiencing these symptoms continually, talk to your doctor about potential nutrient deficiency or signs of thyroid problems, as the symptoms are very similar.

Food can be a sensitive subject for many, whether due to weight insecurity, eating disorders, or socio-economic factors that make food hard to access. But you do not have to villainize your cravings, no matter what your situation. Learning why you’re experiencing food cravings, as well as strategies to manage unwanted cravings, can lead you to a happier, healthier relationship with food.

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