1 AnswerLionel Bissoon, Alternative & Complementary Medicine, answeredSuccess in life is rarely an accidental event. We all know success requires commitment and follow through. When it comes to goal setting, once people achieve their target, they often aim even higher for further improvement. It just takes focus to begin the process, and once it begins, success follows naturally as a result.
A study has recorded the television viewing habits and leisure-time physical activity levels of about 1,000 16-year-olds in northern Sweden. About 88% of these participants were then evaluated at age 43. The study found that TV and leisure activity levels at age 16 could predict the likelihood of having metabolic syndrome in one’s 40s.
Specifically, participants who watched several TV shows each day at age 16 were twice as likely to have metabolic syndrome at age 43 than those who watched one show per week or less at age 16.
When evaluated at age 43, 26.9% of participants had metabolic syndrome, and 55% were overweight and obese. Interestingly, high TV watching was associated with certain outcomes -- central obesity, low HDL cholesterol and hypertension at age 43. Low physical activity levels were associated with some different outcomes -- central obesity and high triglycerides.
This study has merits and limitations. It shows an association between a sedentary lifestyle and metabolic dysfunction later in life. It has a high follow-up rate (88%), and the longitudinal nature of the study is valuable.The results show an association, not causality between watching TV and having metabolic syndrome. Because it shows an association rather than causality, the evaluation of TV watching should be considered more of a "surrogate marker" that likely involves other contributing factors. In particular, the study did not evaluate participants’ diets. This could be a significant factor and was not addressed in the current study.
1 AnswerMultiple Sclerosis Foundation answeredWhen it comes to perceptions about change and how to go about creating new habits, there are a lot of myths that have been embraced as truth. The ideas BJ Fogg, PhD, a social scientist and behavior researcher at Stanford University hears most frequently are that a person can only commit to one habit at a time and that it takes 21 days to create a new habit. “Neither is accurate,” he says. “You do not need to perfect one habit before you go onto another. And you can create a new habit relatively quickly.”
The key to avoiding these common mistakes is to change your thinking. To help, the following list was developed by BJ Fogg, Kara Chanasyk, Margarita Quihuis, Neema Moraveji, Jason Hreha and Mark Nelson at the Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab:
Mistake: Relying on willpower for long-term change
Change: Imagine willpower doesn’t exist. That’s step one to a better future.
Mistake: Attempting big leaps instead of baby steps.
Change: Seek tiny successes – one after another.
Mistake: Ignoring how environment shapes behavior.
Change: Change your context; change your life.
Mistake: Trying to stop old behaviors instead of creating new ones.
Change: Focus on action, not avoidance.
Mistake: Blaming the behavior on lack of motivation.
Change: Make the behavior easier to do.
Mistake: Not understanding the power of triggers.
Change: No behavior happens without triggers.
Mistake: Believing that information leads to action.
Change: We humans aren’t rational.
Mistake: Focusing on abstract goals rather than concrete behavior.
Abstract: Get in shape.
Concrete: Walk 15 minutes a day.
Mistake: Seeking to change a behavior forever, not for a short term.
Change: A fixed period works better than forever.
Mistake: Assuming that behavior change is difficult.
Change: Behavior change is not so hard when you have the right process.
So, you’ve got a plan, you’ve changed your way of thinking, you are excited to get started. As you move forward, begin to take action. Remember to lean on others when you need help.
2 AnswersA large, multi-center study has added more evidence in support of regular exercise, eating a Mediterranean-style diet, keeping a normal weight and, most importantly, not smoking. The study, led by Johns Hopkins researchers, found that adopting those four lifestyle behaviors protected against coronary heart disease as well as the early buildup of calcium deposits in heart arteries and reduced the chance of death from all causes by 80 percent over an eight-year period.
1 AnswerAccept failure as an option. Failure is always a possibility when taking a risk, but success is also a possibility. You have to be willing to face both. One of my favorite quotes is "life rewards action," because so often we think and dream about things, but we don’t actually take a step toward what we want.
Try to identify what is holding you back from taking a risk, and then take action -- even if it’s small. So, if your goal is to jump out of an airplane, that first step may be to ride with someone to see them do it. Or, if you want to travel abroad, your first step may be to set up a separate account to save money for the trip.
It’s also important to surround yourself with people who support and encourage you and who take risks in their own lives.
The process of taking risks can take a long time or be immediate. The important thing is that you’re moving toward it. One last thing: Be willing to look silly. When you try anything new, you’re going to look foolish and that’s okay. Get over it and do it anyway!
1 AnswerValorie Burton, Health Education, answeredRather than saying this year you want to save X dollars, aim for a percentage of money you would like to save and break it down in 90-day increments. That way, if you’re behind the first month, you have two more months to catch up. Ninety days gives you room to deal with setbacks or temptations that might throw you off course.
Also, setting up an automatic debit from a checking account increases the likelihood that you will reach your savings goal. Relying on yourself to write a check or transfer money is a sure way to decrease the chances that you will reach your financial goals.
Accountability is also important for saving money. For example, when you keep a debt to yourself and you don’t reach a goal of paying it off, you’re only disappointing yourself. So tell your friends and family what you’re going through. Another way accountability can work is that you may have friends or family who have similar savings goals. Instead of a book club, start a money saving club. Get together once a month to set savings goals and discuss milestones or setbacks. Having a group to hold yourself accountable can be very powerful.
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1 AnswerDavid Pollock, , answeredStand up straight and be proud! You will appear more confident and look younger. Here is a trick: practice standing with your arms down to your side. Next, turn your thumbs outward. Your shoulders automatically go back. Practice this until standing up straight becomes second nature.
1 AnswerDavid Pollock, , answeredAs we grow older, our bodies start to slow down. Age sets in. But none of us want to admit it. We all want to look our best -- as long as we can. Here are a few simple lifestyle changes that can help you turn back the hands of time -- quickly and easily.
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- Stand up straight. You will appear more confident and look younger.
- Sleep. Having a good night sleep of seven to eight hours gives your body a chance to rejuvenate itself.
- Hair color. Coloring your hair to hide the gray is a great way to hide the telltale signs of aging.
- Hairstyle. Shorter hair eliminates the dry ends, creates a more bouncy look and can improve your overall youthfulness.
- Makeup. Avoid heavy makeup.
- Update your glasses. Updating your current frames creates a more current, up-to-date look.
- Brighter smile. A smile changes your whole face and makes you look more radiant, distracting from areas that show your age.
- Dress right. As your body changes, so should your wardrobe. Wear outfits that compliment your body and that help hide areas of concern.
- Update your shoes. Dull, worn and out of date shoes reflect the same on your appearance.
- Take care of your skin. Proper skin care will help restore that healthy, radiant glow!