Prevent Kidney Stones with Diet

Experts agree that having the right diet is one of the keys in treating and preventing kidney stones. This is because when there is controlled diet, people can choose not to consume foods that can lead to the faster formation and faster growth-in the cases of those who already have kidney stones.

Experts agree that having the right diet is one of the keys in treating and preventing kidney stones. This is because when there is controlled diet, people can choose not to consume foods that can lead to the faster formation and faster growth-in the cases of those who already have kidney stones.As defined, kidney stones refer to the salts and other minerals formed in the vital organs such as kidneys, ureters, and bladder. Many people are prone to this because these stones tend to form naturally. However, not all kidney stones should be neglected because they can cause extremely uncomfortable pangs of pain and can even result in more complicated related diseases.

Experts say that along with early diagnosis, eating the right set of foods is very crucial in preventing kidney stones. For those who are already suffering from this condition also need to pay attention to their diet because this directly affects the degree or severity of the kidney stones.

It is a proven fact that people who have suffered from kidney stones will likely to have them again 10 or 15 years later. This is because many sufferers do not maintain medication, proper diet, and the physical activities needed to prevent this condition.

Fighting kidney stones using diet

Doctors and other specialists in the field of medicine would agree that the easiest way to fight kidney stones is by having a diet that is balanced and appropriate for your age.

For people who are suffering from kidney stones, experts advise them to take specific preventive measures to stop kidney stones from forming. The following are some dietary suggestions to lessen the chances of getting kidney stones.

  1. Increase fluid intake. This is quite effective in fighting kidney stones because if you have enough liquid in your body, it will wash away toxins and flush them out. Increasing fluid intake, especially water, is the simplest yet most effective way of fighting kidney stones. The ideal water intake should be 8 glasses per day, but since people with kidney stones need more to flush out salts and other minerals in the body, 10 to 12 glasses is recommended daily.
  2. Cut back on sodium. Too much salt or sodium is one of the primary causes of kidney stones because it increases the calcium levels present in a person’s urine. Doctors advise people with calcium stones to cut down or totally eliminate sodium intake from the foods that they eat. Too much salt intake will only make the condition more complicated and may also cause other related diseases.
  3. Increase the intake of fibre-rich foods. Indeed, fibre is considered beneficial to people with kidney stones because it contains several compounds-mostly are phytate-that guards the kidney against the formation of stones.

Following a simple healthy diet low in sodium and high in water and fibre will help prevent kidney stones and the negative symptoms that go along with them

Control Acne with a Few Lifestyle Changes

Although we would like to think otherwise, society places high importance on one’s looks. Before anything else, your face is the first thing others see whenever they encounter you. In general, our confidence often relies on our contentment to our physical appearance. When one thinks he or she looks good, the confidence really exudes.

Although we would like to think otherwise, society places high importance on one’s looks. Before anything else, your face is the first thing others see whenever they encounter you. In general, our confidence often relies on our contentment to our physical appearance. When one thinks he or she looks good, the confidence really exudes. Lack of confidence with one’s appearance can reach its height during adolescence when acne can become a problem. Acne may not affect everyone during adolescence, and in fact it can come out later in life instead, but for those who suffer from acne pimples and scaring there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

Is acne a problem for you? Are you spending too much money on chemical remedies? Do you want to apply a treatment but you are afraid it may be harsh? Try the natural way of treating your acne. The best part is you don’t have to look far… The treatment is right in your home.

The most effective beauty tip of all times is: drink at least 8 glasses of water a day. Hydrating your body will help you get rid toxins. Love your body and love your skin.

Following healthy and clean may also help. Make sure that you do not leave makeup products on your skin overnight or for long periods of time because it contributes to clogging your pores. This can cause more pimples and blackheads. Also, keep your hair away from your face. Hair contains oil that may create breakouts to your skin. Avoid touching your face with dirty hands and clean the surface of your telephone or other items that come in contact with your skin.

Wash your pillow case and towels. They are absorbent and they absorb even acne-contributors too. Lastly, never pick your pimples. You do not want your face to be as dirty as your fingernails, right?

A healthy diet is also a good way to control acne and pimples. Eating right will help you cleanse from the inside out. Try to cut out oily and unhealthy fatty food. Focus on foods that are high in fibre and anti-oxidants. Look for food rich in vitamins A, B and D as well as calcium, potassium, magnesium, zinc and iron. A diet which is high in beta-carotene and zinc is good for acne prevention as well as healing and anti-scaring.

Beauty may only be skin deep, but having beautiful skin will make you feel more confident.

A Gift of Sight: Visual Perception Treatment for Autistic Children

Autism effects every child differently, so it is difficult to find the exact treatments your child needs to cope with his or her symptoms. One thing that effects some autistic children (though, not all) is problems with visual perception.

Autism effects every child differently, so it is difficult to find the exact treatments your child needs to cope with his or her symptoms. One thing that effects some autistic children (though, not all) is problems with visual perception. By using some standardized methods to help improve visual perception, you can give your child the ability to see the world more clearly, making learning and comprehension easier and possibly curbing some behavior problems as well.

Autistic children mainly have problems with sensory overload and distortion. These are some of the same problems many people not suffering from the disorder develop, and so many treatment options have become available. Individuals with autism often find, however, that the sensory overload of the world due to light, colors, contrast, shapes, and patterns, is too much to handle, causing them to act out or shut down in general. This is sometimes a genetic condition that is simply enhanced by the autism, so if the child’s parents have trouble with reading or have been otherwise treated for visual perceptive problems, there is a good chance that the child needs help as well.

The Irene Method is one effective way to treat visual perception disorders. This method uses color to create a more harmonized world. You may have heard of these methods if anyone has ever suggested using a color filter over the page when reading to be able to read better and more quickly. This method is proven to work, and if your autistic child is at the maturity level of reading, you may want to try these color filters to see if there is a difference in speed and comprehension. However, it is more likely that your autistic child will benefit from color filters during the entire day, not just when reading. Special glasses have been made using colored lenses to conquer this problem. Not every child responds the same way to every color, so it is a process of trial and error to find out which color is the one blocking the harmful light. You can also choose to use colored light bulbs in your home to help autistic individuals with their visual perception problems.

This method mainly helps children in 4 areas: depth perception, social interaction, learning, and physical well being. The colors help the child determine how far he or she is from an object, and the world becomes more three-dimensional, helping depth perception. Social interaction also improves because the child feels as though he or she is in a calmer world and can more clearly see and interpret facial expressions. The colors make it possible to learn, especially when reading, and overall, the child will feel better, because it helps reduce headaches and dizziness. By testing this technique and others to help visual perception problems, you can help your child better cope with the world and his or her autism.

Getting Teens to Like Their Bodies

It may seem impossible, but it can be done.

It seems teenagers – both boys and girls – across the world have issues accepting their bodies. And it’s no wonder. Their bodies are changing at rapid rates, and they often don’t understand what’s going on inside their own skins. On top of that, the media says the perfect body is sleek and slender, has curves at the right places and nowhere else. And as today’s teens consume more media than any generation in the past, they’re getting this message told to them over and over again.

So how can you help your teens break through the self-conscious feelings that come from poor body image and help them take pride in their bodies? With these tips.

Tip 1: Know Who’s in Control

A teen often feels inadequate because his or her body doesn’t measure up to someone else’s standards. To help your teen forget about these standards or at least put them in perspective, encourage your teen to realize that he or she is the only person who can determine what his or her body should look like.

Once your teen gets this figured out, it should be easier to put other people’s opinions aside and accept his or her body. With this mindset, your teen should be prepared to make some goals that are more personalized instead of the bone-thin recommendations that come courtesy of the magazine rack.

Tip 2: Stay in Control

As freeing as it may be for your teen to know he or she determines the standards to which his or her body will be held, these standards can still be rather difficult to meet. In order for your teen to not beat him or herself down over body issues, you’ll need to train your child to stay focused on the positive. Teach your teen to focus on the positive any time he or she begins to think negative thoughts about his or her body. The positive thoughts don’t have to be centered on your teen’s body. Quite the contrary. Have your child think of puppies, lollipops, basketball, or whatever else causes your teen to be happy.

Tip 3: Don’t Hold It In

Any time someone feels inadequate, the natural response isn’t to go and tell everyone. But doing this may make the difference in your teen’s life. Do all you can to maintain open lines of communication with your teenager. This way, if he or she is dealing with body image issues, you’ll be the first to know. Armed with this knowledge, you can talk with your teen and encourage him or her to love his or her body as it is. If your teen is consistently concerned about his or her body, set up a plan to make changes. And then go through the changes together.

Most important, if your teen’s body images ever seem to concern you, you’ll be in a good position to encourage your child to receive professional help. While most teens have minor body image issues, some problems that are so intense that they lead to depression and suicidal thoughts. Being there for your teen can help you catch these symptoms early and protect your teen from doing something dangerous.

Turn It Off?

Parents whose teens are dealing with media-induced body image problems are apt to unplug the television and throw away every magazine in the house. However, this may not be the best solution. After all, the moment your teen leaves the house, he or she is likely to come across the media you’re trying to shield him or her from.

So instead of shielding your child from the media’s messages, talk with your child about the messages. Is it unreal that people look perfect at all times? Yes. Is it worthwhile to try to look like a movie star or starlet at all times? No. For a little extra encouragement, hop online and search videos that highlight the power of Photoshop. Then your teen can see how hard the media works to portray a false image of what they deem perfection!

Time for a Fun Family Dinner

Wish dinner with the kids was a time of good food and great conversation? It will be soon!

It’s 6:30 p.m., and the entire family is worn out. You and your spouse were at work all day, and the kids just finished up soccer practice after a grueling day at school. It seems the only thing on anyone’s agenda is eating as fast as possible and getting in front of the television or computer screen.

But this doesn’t have to happen to your family. With a little work, you can turn dinnertime into a regular event that everyone looks forward to. You may even get your moody teen to smile and talk. How can you pull off these magic tricks? With the following ideas.

Go Color Crazy: If your dinner foods are always full of different colors, you can catch your family off guard by making them all the same color. Pick a color and go for it! You can either choose foods of the same color or use a little food coloring to make foods all sorts of unexpected colors. Just be careful. Turn the wrong food a really strange color, and your family may have a hard time eating it.

Involve the Little People. No matter how young or old your kids are, they’ll benefit from getting their hands dirty in the kitchen. Make dinner a family affair by letting your kids plan the menu for the night. Then give them age-appropriate tasks in the kitchen to get dinner ready for the whole family to enjoy.

Get Backwards. Never let your kids eat dessert first? Make their nights by starting your meal with dessert. Only when dessert is over will you let them start in on the main course. Once this is gone, finish off with some sort of appetizer. You’ll have everyone so confused they won’t stop talking all night!

Pack a Picnic Basket. While picnics are usually reserved for the great outdoors, you can toss a blanket on your living room floor and have one inside. This is particularly fun when the weather prevents you from actually being able to eat outside. Have paper plates and napkins on hand, and there will be very little cleanup afterward.

Turn It into a Party. Some of the best conversations take place while standing around eating finger foods at parties. Why not turn your kitchen into a party scene by cooking up a few finger foods and encouraging your family to stand up while they eat? As you lean against the kitchen counter, you can learn all about your children’s days at school. Want to pull even more info out of your kids? Let them invite a friend or two over. Just be sure to relish these moments, because they won’t last forever!

Make the Event Topical. There are a million things you could talk about around the dining room table. But if you’re not careful, none of them will be discussed. To keep communication lines open at your house, write down a dozen or more topics of discussion and toss them in a basket in the middle of the table. When things get quiet, have one of your kids pick a topic randomly and let the conversation begin!

Focus on the Family

Mealtime is a sacred time that allows families to gather together and talk over family business and simply enjoy one another’s company. Unfortunately, there are many distractions that can keep dinner from being a family affair.

To keep your kids and guests tuned in to what’s going on at the table, issue the following rules:

  • talking, texting, or other use of phones is prohibited
  • no watching television during dinner (unless the whole family is watching together and talking at the same time)
  • before leaving the table, you must be excused by the cook
  • there is no excuse for missing dinner – even if you’re not hungry
  • if it has been prepared, you have to try it

Why You Need a Vacation

A few reasons why you should make time to get away from the office and vacate to a different locale.

Your life is busy, and you don’t need anyone to remind you of it. If only you could afford to get away and spend some time at the beach, in the mountains, or walking the streets of the big city where you’ve always wanted to go.

Well…what’s stopping you? Though your over-achieving mindset may think vacation is for the weak and is a hindrance to productivity, the benefits of vacation are alluring enough to get even the biggest workaholic to take off the work clothes and slip into something more comfortable.

Perk #1: Better Health

Ever wondered why your back is hurting, you constantly have the sniffles, and you always want to go to sleep? It may be due to your never-ending work schedule. Catch up some rest and relaxation, and you may find yourself feeling better than you have in years. Taking a vacation can also help lower your blood pressure and make you better prepared to deal with the everyday stresses that come your way. Not worried about your blood pressure levels? People who cut out of work for an annual vacation have also been found to live longer. Interested now?

Warning: Vacations Should Not Be Overdone. If a little vacation is good, a ton of it is great, right? Not necessarily. Spend more time vacationing than you spend at work, and you may wind up feeling worthless and lazy. Avoid this by using vacations to re-energize yourself for your life work, not to avoid it altogether!

Perk #2: Boost Productivity

It may seem counterintuitive, but getting away from the office helps you spend your time more wisely when you’re in the office. Feel your brain or body is beat down and cant’ handle much more work? Schedule a vacation and view your time off as a reward for working hard in the coming weeks. Additionally, when you return to work, you’ll be refreshed and more capable of tackling complex and simple problems.

Perk #3: Bigger Perspective

After being stuck in one environment for day after day, week after week, month after month, your creativity can suffer immensely. Give it a boost by exposing yourself to a new environment. Your trip doesn’t have to be somewhere exotic or even exciting. Just going somewhere different will be enough to help you remember that there is a big world outside your workplace. With this mindset, you’ll give yourself a broader perspective that will pay off when you’re trying to think creatively.

Perk #4: Belong Again

When you’re at home, do you feel like an outsider looking in? Use your vacation to change that. Reconnect with your spouse and children in ways that will help you stay connected for the long run. These people are the reason you’re working so hard, and if you aren’t able to enjoy their company and know them intimately, you’ve missed the mark with your hardworking ways. So put down the office key, pack up your swimsuit, and get ready to be reintroduced to your loved ones.

Don’t Take It With You

No matter how tempted you may be, you should never take work with you on vacation. In today’s world, completely getting away from work may seem impossible, but you can do it. Before leaving for vacation, disconnect yourself from the business world. That means turning off your cell phone, leaving your laptop at home, and doing whatever else is necessary to leave work at work.

Feel some sort of pressure to stay connected to work while on vacation? Talk with your boss about your mixed feelings. More than likely, he or she will understand and will give you the thumbs up on a disconnected week away. It may take a couple days to get over the need to stay in contact, but once you stop worrying about e-mail and phone messages, you’ll reap refreshing benefits!

Love Your Feet

What you can do to treat your bottom dwellers like the top dogs.

There are lots of body parts that get lots of attention. Your face has all sorts of special cleansers and creams. Your abs get worked out day in and day out as you search for the perfect swimsuit shape. And your biceps go through enough of a routine to be awarded their own gym membership. But what are you doing for your feet? If it’s nothing special, it may be time to change.

Here’s why to give your feet a little extra TLC and how to do it on a daily basis.

High Priority

They may be way down on the ground, but your feet ought to be on the top of your mind if you want optimal overall health. Neglect your feet and over time, they can suffer damage that makes it hard to do all the things you enjoy in life, such as play with your children, drive a stick shift, and even walk without pain.
Since your feet also give you an early indication of whether various diseases are setting in, (See “From the Feet”) pay careful attention to what they have to say. When you’re ready to take your walkers to an improved level of health, try out the tips below.

Wear the Right Shoes. You may think that fashion has to be painful. But if you’re wearing shoes that cause any kind of pain, there’s a problem. Instead of suffering through a day of gorgeous shoes that leave you in excruciating pain, only wear shoes that fit well the first time you try them on. Expecting shoes to break in forces your feet to hurt until they do.

Put on Better Shoes When Possible. Though you may choose the best possible dress shoes to wear at work, they may not have the support you need for long-term wear. If possible, keep a pair of comfortable tennis shoes or other shoes with good support at the office. When you’re going to be sitting behind your desk or not interacting with clients for a long period, slip on your tennies. Or go barefoot! Just keep your shoes nearby in case you need to slip them on quickly.

Wash Well. Keeping your feet clean isn’t just to avoid smelly feet. Whether you walk around barefoot in the gym, wear flip-flops to the store, or stay in socks all day long, there is the potential to pick up unwanted hitchhikers. With proper washing, bacteria and fungus that may build up on your feet during the day are washed away. When washing, don’t scour your feet with scalding hot water. For the best clean, use lukewarm water and a mild soap. And don’t scrub the area between your toes dry, as this can cause damage. Instead, gently pat the area dry.

Cut Across. Your toenails due for a good trim? Don’t try to cut them in a beautifully manicured half-moon shape. Instead, cut straight across the nail, careful to not cut your nails too short. Otherwise, you could wind up with painful hangnails that sound harmless but have the potential to keep you off your feet.

Go Pro. Want the best foot care from your toes to your arch to your heel? Visit a local massage therapist for a quick foot massage. Think there’s something suspicious going on with your feet? You may need to visit a podiatrist or other medical pro. That way, if there’s anything going on with your feet that could lead to something more serious, you can find out before it impacts more than your feet.

From the Feet

Are your feet tingling? It could be diabetes. Stiff? You may be suffering from arthritis. Swelling? High blood pressure, kidney disease, or heart disease may be the cause.

Get More Sleep!

Sound like nothing more than a pipe dream? Wake up and make it a reality.

Every morning you make yourself the promise: Tonight, you’ll go to bed earlier. You’ll get more sleep. You’ll feel great in the morning. But it seems to never happen. Even if you do get in bed earlier than usual, you still have a hard time getting all the sleep you need to feel your best in the morning.

Is there any relief in sight? Why, yes there is. All you need to do is make a few tweaks to your routine, and your sleepy mornings will soon be long gone.

Don’t Make Excuses

If you’re like most people, you find a way to do what you find most important. Whether that’s spending time with your family, checking your e-mail for business purposes, or reading a good book. As important as all of these things are, something may have to go if you’re going to sleep more.

Before you say you can’t do it, think about it. You could probably spend a little less time at work and a little more at home, so you could squeeze in family time during earlier hours. Also, you get very little work done at home, so why not leave work at work and get back to the grindstone when you’re at the office? Getting rid of obstacles to good sleep is essential to getting sufficient sleep.

Calm Down

Ever had difficulty falling asleep, no matter how tired you may be? It may be because you don’t give your body and your time to calm down. To lend a helping hand, try the following:

  • write out a to-do list for the next day before getting in bed
  • avoid caffeine during the last four to eight hours before bedtime
  • don’t eat or drink much during the last few hours before going to bed
  • set a calming routine that puts you in the mood to go to sleep
  • don’t spend time exercising right before you go to bed
  • make sure your bedroom is dark and quiet when it’s time to hit the hay
  • don’t take long naps during the day
  • never watch television while lying in bed
  • don’t let pets or little people sleep in your bed

Prepare for the Mornings

Before you go into your calming routine, you can make the mornings more peaceful with a few little steps. Do them right and you can even set your alarm clock for a little later than usual. Good ideas no matter what your circumstances include setting out tomorrow’s clothing and making your lunch for the next day before going to bed.

If you have children who always want to wake you up, you can take some extra steps for a few more minutes in bed on the weekends. After you put the kids to bed, set out books and toys in the hallway that leads from their room to yours.

This will keep them busy for a bit – especially if you put out items they’ve not seen in a while. You can also fend off your kids’ early-morning food needs by setting out fruit and muffins beside their bedroom door. Put out a blanket and some fun décor, and they’ll be thrilled to have a personal picnic waiting for them when they wake up, and you’ll be thrilled to be able to stay in bed while they enjoy breakfast.

How Much Is Enough?

Throughout your life, your sleep needs will likely change. On average, healthy adults require between seven and nine hours of sleep each night. This isn’t time spent in the bed. It’s sleep. So turn off the TV, go through your bedtime routine, and get some shuteye!

Say Hello to a Prostate-Friendly Diet

What you can put in your mouth to protect your prostate gland.

Though only the size of a walnut, your prostate gland can cause some big problems. When it grows too large, you can wind up with enlarged prostate, which can result in all sorts of issues involving your urination habits and urinary tract health. And if cancer sets in, the results can be deadly.

Fortunately, you don’t have to sit around and wonder if you’re going to wind up with prostate disease. By eating the right foods, you can provide maximum protection for your prostate. Though current research has not proven the absolute worth of any food on protecting your prostate health, the medical world is comfortable making the recommendations below. So read on to get the scoop on what foods to include in your prostate-protecting diet.

Hello, Fatty Fish Acids

Want better prostate protection? Your diet is going to have to get a little bit fishy. By consuming fish that is high in omega-3 fatty acids, you give your prostate an instant and lasting boost of protection against prostate problems. Fish to go with are those living in cold water, such as mackerel, herring, and salmon.

Goodbye, Fatty Foods

While there is nothing wrong with growing your muscles, fatty foods—especially those that are made of animal products—don’t normally do the prostate good. Rather, they give any cancerous cells just what they need to multiply and spread, making it more difficult for you to contain and treat prostate cancer. With regard to enlarged prostate, the jury is still out about whether fatty meats prevent or result in an enlarged prostate.

Hello, Vegetables

Yes, mama was onto something when she told you to eat your vegetables. Because vegetables serve to give your body the various nutrients to stay strong and fit, while also reducing your risk for all sorts of cancer. For prostate-specific protection, go with spinach, asparagus, broccoli, cabbage, and beans. These foods contain vitamins and minerals that help your prostate maintain good health. As the highest level of protection against enlarged prostate comes with five or more servings of veggies a day, don’t let up on your vegetable consumption!

Goodbye, Unhealthy Snacks

Fried chicken, pickled beets, and salty potato chips may be just what your taste buds are calling for, but you should ignore their pleading. Why? Because giving into these desires will increase your waistline and promote the production of prostate cancer cells within your body.

Hello, Zinc-Rich Foods

Ready to give your prostate another layer of protection from the threat of enlarged prostate? You’ll need to beef up on your zinc intake. Though you can get it in a tablet, the best sources are baked beans, crab, oysters, lamb, duck, and lean meat. In addition to protecting against an enlarged prostate, zinc may prevent your prostate from damage that leads to prostate cancer.

Tip: Remember Moderation

No matter if you’re eating or drinking, prostate protection and your overall good health depends on moderation. So when you begin jamming your diet full of prostate-protecting foods, don’t begin eating more calories than you can use in a day. For most people, this is approximately 2,000 calories. If you’re unsure how many calories you should be eating, talk with an exercise or nutrition expert.

Additionally, you’ll need to watch your alcohol intake, as excessive drinking may increase your likelihood for prostate cancer. However, two alcoholic drinks per day may actually lower your risk for enlarged prostate, so you shouldn’t put away the alcohol altogether. Just take it easy and avoid excessive drinking at all costs.

Your Health by the Numbers

The most important numbers you should know regarding your health.

Want to be in the best health of your life? You’ll have to keep an eye on some key numbers. But with so many numbers to keep track of, you may be wondering which ones to really pay attention to. If you’re in fairly good health, you should know and monitor the following few easy-to-track numbers.

Weight and Height

Your body-mass index (BMI) may not be the most accurate determination of your overall health, but it does provide a good indication of whether or not you’re overweight. To figure out your BMI using pounds and inches, divide your weight in pounds by your height in inches squared. Multiply this answer by 703. For a BMI based on kilograms and meters, divide your weight in kilograms by your height squared. Healthy adults should have BMIs between 18.5 and 24.9. A higher BMI indicates you may be overweight or obese, and a lower BMI means you may be underweight.

Cholesterol

Despite having a perfect BMI, your body may not be the well-oiled health machine it could be. If your cholesterol is out of control, your body—even if it’s thin—may be quietly putting you in harm’s way. Unfortunately, you can’t figure out your cholesterol levels with a mathematical formula. It requires a trip to your physician. Ideally, your total cholesterol is no higher than 199 mg/dL, your low-density lipoprotein (bad) cholesterol shouldn’t exceed 130 mg/dL (70 mg/dL if you’re at high risk for heart disease), and your high-density lipoprotein (good) cholesterol should stay at 45 mg/dL or higher.

Blood Pressure

Equally as important to your health is the force with which blood presses against your blood vessels, which is measured as blood pressure. To find out your blood pressure, drop by a pharmacy. Most of them now offer free blood pressure screenings, and many allow you to perform the quick test yourself. For your blood pressure to be considered healthy, your blood pressure should be 120/80 mmHg or less. The top number, called your systolic blood pressure, indicates the pressure on your arteries during each heartbeat. The lower number, your diastolic blood pressure, is the pressure on your arteries as your heart rests. If either the top or bottom number gets any higher than 120/80, you’re at risk for high blood pressure, one of the leading risk factors for heart disease and stroke.

Target Heart Rate

To lower your blood pressure and cholesterol and get other great benefits from exercise, you’ll need to know how hard to work your heart. In order to do this, subtract your age in years from 220. This number is your maximum heart rate, the highest number of beats you can likely achieve in one minute of strenuous exercise. Take this number and multiply it by .75 and you’ll have your target heart rate. Once you have this number, get to the gym and start exercising. Take your pulse in the middle of your routine. If your heart is going slower than your target heart rate, push it a little harder. Heart going faster than your target? You may need to slow down a bit. If you have other health issues, consult an exercise professional or physician to determine your target heart rate.

Blood Sugar

When it comes to blood sugar (glucose), you’ve got to hit the target. Have blood pressure that’s too high and it could spell trouble. Have blood pressure that’s too low and you’re on the same dangerous path. A normal range for your blood sugar if you’ve not eaten recently is between 70 and 100 mg/dL. If you recently ate, expect it to spike as high as 140 mg/dL, but no higher. In the event your blood sugar is out of these boundaries, you may have diabetes. If your blood sugar is on either edge of the scale, take steps to improve your blood glucose levels and your health.