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Report 7
Report 1
The Salt
That Can
Make You Fat 46
©2012 by Rodale Inc. All rights reserved.
to Fatigue
This publication is only for the personal use of Rodale customers. For any other
purpose, no part may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means,
electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or any other information storage and retrieval system, without the written permission of the
Report 2
Report 8
Belly in
7 Days
Four Ways to Contact Prevention Customer Service
• Go to
• E-mail [email protected]
• Call (800) 813-8070
• Write to Prevention Magazine,
P.O. Box 26299, Lehigh Valley, PA 18002-6299
The information here is designed to help you make informed decisions about your
health. It is not intended as a substitute for any treatment prescribed by your
doctor. If you suspect that you have a medical problem, please seek competent
medical care.
Mention of specific companies, organizations, or authorities in this publication
does not necessarily imply endorsement by the publisher, nor does mention of
specific companies, organizations, or authorities in the book imply that they endorse the publication.
Internet addresses and product information given were accurate at the time this
publication was posted.
Project manager: Laura Mory
Project editor: Diane Gilroy
Project researcher: Lori McLaughlin
Copy editor: Alice M. Perry
Cover designer: Stacie Pearson
Book designer: Maureen Logan
Photo editor: Stephanie Smith
Photography: cover, p. 56: Getty Images, p. 6: Jupiter Images; p. 9: CMCD
Library; pp. 11–14: Tara Donne; pp. 35, 39: Hilmar; pp. 37, 38, 40: Shannon
Greer; p. 42: Quentin Bacon; p. 45: PhotoLibrary; p. 48: Marcus Nilsson; pp.
49, 68: Mitch Mandel/Rodale; p. 50: Rodale Images; p. 53: Beth Bischoff; p. 54:
Thomas MacDonald/Rodale; p. 61: Bananastock; pp. 62–64, 66: Glenn Glasser;
pp. 73–75, 77, 78: Sang An
Report 3
Report 9
Cures for
Back Pain
Report 4
Report 10
Look Younger
Now: Hair,
& More
How to Make
Sure You
Never Have a
Heart Attack 57
Report 5
Report 11
Walk Off
a Size
Report 6
Report 12
Worth a
Second Look 41
Say Good-Bye
to Fatigue
Why do you feel so tired all the time?
Maybe it’s lack of sleep, or maybe
it’s the constant demands of all the
roles you play every day—wife, sister,
friend, mother, girlfriend.
We can help. Here are foods that
are practically guaranteed to give you
an energy boost. And if they don’t
help, keep reading to see if a hidden
disease is causing your slump.
5 Fatigue-Fighting Foods
Experts suggest that these foods are
some of your best bets for boosting
your energy.
Orange juice
Orange juice is a great source
of energy-essential vitamin C,
and OJ helps absorption of bloodbuilding iron. Believe it or not, as
many as one out of three women
isn’t getting enough vitamin C, says
Carol Johnston, PhD, RD, a nutrition
specialist and professor in the
department of nutrition at Arizona
State University in Mesa. But women
she studied who were low in vitamin
C did much better on treadmill tests
after they were given extra C daily.
“They felt better, and they had more
energy,” she says.
Johnston suspects that the
connection between vitamin C and
energy has to do with C’s role in
producing carnitine, a molecule that
helps your body burn fat for energy.
“People likely have up to a 50% drop
in muscle carnitine levels when
they’re vitamin C–depleted,” she says.
Although 500 mg of C was used in
the research, Johnston thinks that
200 to 300 mg daily is enough for you
to feel more energy, assuming that
you were short on C. You can get that
much without supplementing if you
drink plenty of orange juice (two 8 oz
glasses a day) and eat a diet high in
vitamin C–rich foods. (Other vitamin
C–rich foods include broccoli,
brussels sprouts, kale, peppers, and
In moderation, coffee works as a
quick pick-me-up by making energy
stores more available and increasing
“muscle fiber recruitment,” that is,
by helping the fiberlike cells in your
muscles work together for maximum
efficiency. But the boost from caffeine
is unsustainable, so coffee should
never be used in place of food.
This vital liquid prevents acute
dehydration, which forces your
cells to borrow water from the
bloodstream, reducing your vitality.
Drinking at least eight glasses
a day also prevents cumulative
dehydration, which could build
during the week and end up as Friday
fatigue. And water is still the best
antidote to hot-day lethargy.
Fiber-filled legumes improve
endurance. And they’re a great
source of iron, the most important
mineral for fighting fatigue. Iron is
needed for energy because of its role
in the creation of red blood cells,
which carry oxygen to where it’s
needed in the body. Having too little
iron lowers your metabolic rate—and
your energy levels.
If you suspect that mildly low iron
is slowing you down, eat beans and
other foods rich in the mineral: dark
leafy greens (such as spinach or kale),
tofu, steamed clams, and red meat.
(Serious anemia-level deficiencies
require a doctor’s attention.)
Like most fruits, apples have
simple sugars, such as fructose,
for energy and fiber to spread that
energy surge out over time. And the
fiber in an unpeeled apple has been
associated with improved regularity
and the prevention of colon cancer.
Eat for Better Calorie Burn
The key to a better workout—and a bigger calorie burn—is eating
nutrient-dense foods about 30 minutes before you start walking. And you
don’t need a fancy (read: expensive) trail mix loaded with candy-coated
whatnot. Instead, try this snack packed with high-quality carbohydrates,
which provide a quick fuel source for your muscles and just enough
protein and fat to help you maintain a steady, elevated energy level.
An excellent snack for walkers is a handful each of nuts (walnuts
are high in anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids) and raisins (which
offer a concentrated source of energy). Try 8 walnut halves plus a mini
box (0.5 ounce) of raisins (150 calories). (Read what walnuts can do
for your heart on p. 59.)
Hidden Causes of Fatigue
If you’re just plain tired, give yourself
2 to 3 weeks to make some lifestyle
changes: Get more sleep, trim your
social calendar, eat more wholesome
foods, drink more fluids, and cut back
on caffeine and alcohol.
If you make those changes and are
still suffering fatigue, it could be a sign
of a medical condition. Here are some
common causes of fatigue that can be
diagnosed with a combination of tests
and a thorough exam by your doctor.
Women of childbearing age are
especially susceptible to irondeficiency anemia because of blood
loss during menstruation and the
body’s need for extra iron during
pregnancy and breast-feeding,
explains Laurence Corash, MD,
adjunct professor at the University of
California, San Francisco.
SYMPTOMS Fatigue is a major
symptom. Others include extreme
weakness, difficulty sleeping,
difficulty concentrating, rapid
heartbeat, chest pains, and headache.
Simple exercise, such as climbing the
stairs or walking short distances, can
cause fatigue in people with anemia.
Anemia may be the first sign of a
serious illness, so seek treatment as
soon as possible.
TESTS A thorough evaluation for
anemia includes a complete physical
exam and blood tests, including a
complete blood count (CBC), to
check the levels of your red blood cells
and hemoglobin. It’s also standard to
check the stool for blood.
Sugar, also called glucose, is the fuel
that keeps your body going. And that
means trouble for people whose bodies
can’t use glucose properly, causing it to
build up in the blood. Fatigue is one of
the first warning signs.
In type 1 diabetes, usually
occurring first in childhood or the
young adult years, the body doesn’t
produce insulin, a hormone that
converts sugar, starches, and other
food into energy. People with type
1 diabetes must take daily insulin
injections to survive.
In type 2 diabetes, which accounts
for 90 to 95% of diabetes cases in the
United States, the body either doesn’t
make enough insulin or doesn’t use
insulin effectively. Type 2 usually
develops gradually, most often in
people over age 45, but it’s occurring
more often earlier in life as Americans
become more overweight.
SYMPTOMS Extreme fatigue is one
of the early warning signs that your
blood sugar level is out of control, says
Christopher D. Saudek, MD, professor
of medicine at Johns Hopkins
University School of Medicine in
Baltimore and former president of the
American Diabetes Association. Other
symptoms include excessive thirst,
frequent urination, extreme hunger,
weight loss, irritability, vaginal yeast
infections, and blurred vision.
TESTS The two major tests for
diabetes are the fasting plasma
glucose test and the glucose tolerance
test. The fasting plasma glucose test
measures your blood glucose level
after you’ve fasted for 10 to 12 hours.
For the glucose tolerance test, blood
is drawn twice: just before drinking a
glucose syrup, then again 2 hours later.
Thyroid Disease
The thyroid gland is found in the
front of the neck. Thyroid-stimulating
hormone (TSH), produced by the
pituitary gland, causes the thyroid
gland to secrete two hormones,
thyroxine (T4) and triiodothyronine
(T3), that control metabolism.
SYMPTOMS Hyperthyroidism (too
much thyroid hormone) causes
muscle fatigue and weakness, which
may occur first in the thigh muscles.
Other symptoms include unexplained
weight loss, feeling warm all the time,
increased heart rate, shorter and
less frequent menstrual flow, and
increased thirst. Hyperthyroidism
is most commonly diagnosed in
women in their 20s and 30s, but it
can occur in older women and men
too. In postmenopausal women,
hyperthyroidism may lead to
Hypothyroidism (too little thyroid
hormone) causes fatigue, an inability
Losing Sleep Over Allergies?
C0018929.jpg 17%
An old mattress can house 2½ times the allergy-triggering dust
mites of a new one, says new European research. But encasing
your mattress and box spring in nonallergenic covers, available
at most home and linen stores, can cut your exposure by up to
half. Washing your bed linens in hot water once a week will also
help reduce the critters and your symptoms.
Source: A study of 3,580 adults’ beds, Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
to concentrate, and muscle soreness,
even with minor activity. Other
symptoms include weight gain due to
water retention, feeling cold all the
time (even in warm weather), heavier
and more frequent menstrual flow,
and constipation. Hypothyroidism is
most commonly diagnosed in women
past the age of 50. In fact, as many
as 10% of women past 50 have mild
TEST Thyroid disease can be detected
with a blood test for TSH. Too much
thyroid hormone, and TSH goes down;
too little thyroid hormone, and TSH
goes up. With diagnosis and treatment,
thyroid disorders can be controlled.
More than “the blues,” depression
is a major illness that affects the
way we sleep, eat, and feel about
ourselves and others, explains Kathy
HoganBruen, PhD, psychologist with
the Ross Center for Anxiety & Related
Disorders in Washington, DC.
Without treatment, the symptoms
of depression may last for weeks,
months, or even years. So it’s
important to recognize the warning
signs and get help.
SYMPTOMS Depression can cause
decreased energy, changes in sleeping
and eating patterns, problems
with memory and concentration,
and feelings of hopelessness,
worthlessness, and negativity.
TESTS If you experience five or more
of the symptoms listed here for
more than 2 weeks, or the symptoms
interfere with your life, see your
doctor or mental health professional.
Your doctor may also recommend a
thorough physical exam to rule out
other issues.
• Fatigue or loss of energy
• Sleeping too little or too much
• A persistent sad, anxious, or
“empty” mood
• Reduced appetite and weight
loss, or increased appetite
and weight gain
• Loss of interest or pleasure
in activities once enjoyed
• Restlessness or irritability
• Persistent physical symptoms
that don’t respond to treatment,
such as headaches, chronic
pain, or constipation or
other digestive disorders
• Difficulty concentrating,
remembering, or making decisions
• Feeling guilty, hopeless, or
• Thoughts of death or suicide
Source: National Mental Health Association
Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a
chronic disease that involves
inflammation in the lining of the
joints. It happens when the body’s
immune system turns against
itself and attacks healthy joint tissue,
sometimes resulting in irreversible
damage to bone and cartilage.
SYMPTOMS RA is not always easy to
diagnose early because many symptoms
(such as fatigue, low energy, loss of
appetite, and joint pain) are shared by
other health conditions, including other
forms of arthritis such as fibromyalgia and
lupus. Also, anemia and thyroid disorders,
which also cause fatigue, are even more
common in people with RA, according to
John Klippel, MD, president and CEO of
the Atlanta-based Arthritis Foundation.
Rheumatologists look for at least four
of the following criteria in diagnosing RA:
morning stiffness in and around the joints
lasting at least 1 hour before maximum
improvement; at least three joint areas
with simultaneous soft tissue swelling or
fluid; swelling in a wrist or knuckle joint;
simultaneous involvement of the same
joint areas on both sides of the body;
lumps of tissue under the skin; and bone
erosion in the wrist or hand joints, as
detected by x-ray.
TESTS A thorough physical exam by a
rheumatologist can provide some of the
most valuable evidence of the disease,
but there is also a test for the presence
of rheumatoid factor, an antibody found
in the blood. About 80% of people
with RA test positive for this antibody,
though the test is not conclusive since
you can test positive and not have RA
and you can test negative when you do
have RA.
IMG0045.jpg 35%
Never Take These Generics
You may have heard that
the FDA allows a difference
of up to 20% between how
the brand name affects your
body and how a generic
does. That’s true—but
20% typically isn’t enough
to make a difference in
effectiveness. That said,
there are a few drugs for
which the 20% leeway
could be significant. These
include warfarin (Coumadin),
levothyroxine (Synthroid),
and certain seizure
medications. For these
particular drugs, switching
between a generic and the
brand can be a bad idea, so
check with your doctor first.
Flat Belly
in 7 Days
Surprise! Good ol’ crunches are
one of the fastest ways to firm your
midsection. (Hate crunches? Bear
with us.) Thanks to 5 decades of
research and nearly 90 studies,
scientists have zeroed in on the best
moves to flatten your belly. The secret
is to really fatigue your abs—not an
easy task, because they’re used to
working all day to keep you standing
tall. But we created a routine that,
when combined with regular cardio,
does it in just four moves.
We know for sure because we had
nearly a dozen women road-test the
program as part of our Prevention
Fitness Lab. “I couldn’t believe the
difference a few days made,” says
Gwen Hoover, 48, of Fogelsville, PA,
who whittled more than 2 inches off
her middle, lost 14% of her belly fat,
and dropped nearly 4 pounds in just
1 week! Even our slimmest testers
saw impressive results. At 5-foot-6
and 125 pounds, Rachelle Vander
Schaaf, 49, of Macungie, PA, wasn’t
expecting to see a big change, but
she shaved more than 3 inches off
her belly—without dieting.
You can too!
Program at a Glance
3 DAYS A WEEK Do the four-move
Slim Belly Abs Workout (p. 11) on
3 nonconsecutive days to tone your
5 DAYS A WEEK Do 30 to 40 minutes of
cardio, such as brisk walking, swimming,
jogging, or bike riding, to burn off belly
fat. You should be breathing hard but
still able to talk in short sentences.
EVERY DAY Watch portions and fill
up on whole grains, vegetables, fruits,
lean proteins, and healthy fats to
maximize results. Aim for 1,600 to
1,800 calories spread evenly throughout
the day. To keep tabs on your eating,
go to
MONDAY Abs and Cardio
THURSDAY Abs and Cardio
SATURDAY Abs and Cardio
Slim Belly Abs Workout
Do 3 sets of each move, performing
as many reps (1 second up, 1 second
down) as possible until you feel a
burning sensation in the muscles
you’re working or you can no longer
maintain proper form. Rest 15 seconds
between sets. You’ll likely be able to
do more reps during earlier sets and
exercises—and that’s okay. After
you can do 50 reps or hold a plank
for 2 minutes for most sets, try the
harder variations, change the order
of the exercises, or do the moves
after another type of workout.
1. Hipless Crunch
This variation better targets abs by preventing hips and upper body from helping you lift.
Lie on back with legs
lifted and bent, calves
parallel to floor, and
feet relaxed. Cross
arms over chest with
hands on shoulders.
Contract abdominal
muscles and lift head,
shoulders, and upper
back about 30 degrees
off floor. Lower without
touching head to floor.
Exhale as you lift; inhale
as you lower.
Prevention Fitness
Lab testers averaged
25 reps per set.
calves on a chair and
extend arms at sides.
Extend legs straight up.
PV-0810-FLAT03_01.tif 30%
• Don’t pull chin
toward chest.
• Focus on abs doing
the work; imagine sliding
rib cage toward hips.
• You start pulling or
jerking up with head,
neck, or shoulders.
• You can’t keep neck
or shoulders relaxed.
2. No-Hands Reverse Crunch
3. V Crunch
Instead of keeping arms at sides, where they can help abs, anchor them overhead to
activate more belly muscles.
This exercise gets your upper and lower body moving simultaneously to recruit the
maximum number of muscle fibers in your midsection.
Lie faceup with arms overhead and hands
grasping a heavy piece of furniture or
railing. Raise feet into the air with legs
bent. Contract abs, press back into floor,
and lift hips off floor. Exhale as you lift;
inhale as you lower.
Prevention Fitness Lab testers averaged
21 reps per set.
MAKE IT EASIER Do the move with arms
down at sides.
MAKE IT HARDER Straighten legs.
• Feel the contraction in abs,
not in back or legs.
• Tilt pelvis.
• Think of lifting up instead
of pulling knees toward chest.
• You can’t lift hips off floor
without jerking.
• Neck and shoulders are tense.
Balance on tailbone with legs bent, feet
off floor, and arms bent at sides. Make
sure back is straight and chest is lifted.
Lean back and extend arms and legs, then
pull back to start position.
Prevention Fitness Lab testers averaged
11 reps per set.
MAKE IT EASIER Grasp sides of thighs
with hands.
MAKE IT HARDER Hold a 3- to 5-pound
dumbbell in each hand.
• Keep your eyes fixed straight
ahead and chin parallel to floor.
• Don’t let back curve or
shoulders rise toward ears.
• You can’t keep arms or legs up.
• You can’t keep chest lifted.
• Back or neck starts to hurt.
PV-0810-FLAT04_01.tif 31%
PV-0810-FLAT05_01.tif 32%
4. Side Plank
Static balancing moves like this one are challenging because your deepest abs work
really hard to hold your core in midair. Do them after crunches to ensure complete
fatigue—and firm abs from every angle.
Lie on right side, elbow beneath shoulder,
feet stacked, left hand on hip. Contract
abs to lift hip and leg off floor. Hold until
fatigued, noting your time. Do 3 sets
before switching sides.
Prevention Fitness Lab testers averaged
19 seconds per side for each set.
MAKE IT EASIER Bend legs and balance
on bottom knee and side of lower leg.
MAKE IT HARDER Straighten top arm
toward the sky.
• Keep head, neck, torso, hips,
and legs all in one straight line.
• Don’t sink into shoulder—press
elbow into floor and lift torso.
• Hip is sagging toward floor.
• Neck, shoulder, or back hurts.
• You can’t keep body in line.
Can Perfume
Peel Off
In a study done by
Alan Hirsch, MD,
neurological director of the Smell
and Taste Treatment and Research
Foundation in
Chicago, people
who smelled green
apple, banana,
or peppermint
several times daily
lost an average
of 30 pounds in
6 months. “We
think the scents
may curb cravings,” Hirsch says.
Harvey Prince
Eau De Lite
com), which
features green
apple and peppermint notes, could
do the same.
50 Years of Flat Abs
Workouts to flatten belly bulge have
changed plenty over the last half
century—but each ab evolution brought
us one step closer to the ultraeffective
routine we’re using today. Here, a look
back at the most popular belly busters.
’60s/’70s Old-School Sit-Up
It targets only the topmost belly
muscle (the rectus abdominis), and
your hip muscles do a lot of the
lifting. Straight-leg versions are also
particularly tough on the back.
’80s The Crunch
When studies revealed that the
first 30% of a sit-up engages abs the
most, crunches became popular. But
good form is key: feet off the floor;
don’t pull on your head.
’90s/’00s Plank Pose
This Pilates move may work abs harder
than crunches, but done alone, it may not
fully fatigue abs. Planks rely on smaller
muscles that often tire more quickly.
Today The Slim Belly Workout
Researchers placed electrodes
on the bellies of hundreds of people as
they crunched, balanced, and twisted
to find the most effective moves,
which are in this routine.
PV-0810-FLAT06_01.tif 32%
THE EXPERT Tony Caterisano, PhD, exercise scientist and professor in the department of health sciences at
Furman University, designed this workout.
Doctor Approved
Home Remedies
Doctors don’t always have a pharmacy
at their fingertips—sometimes they
have to improvise just like the rest
of us. You can stock your shelves to
relieve, recover, and restore just like
the experts do.
knock out dust mites.
onsider investing in a HEPA
air purifier. It filters out small
particles in the air and lessens the
amount of allergy-aggravating dust
circulating in a room.
To diminish asthma and allergy
attacks, Charles P. Gerba, PhD, a
University of Arizona microbiologist
and leading hygiene researcher,
recommends that you:
• Dust and vacuum weekly if
you have allergies or asthma;
otherwise, let your personal
“ick meter” be your guide. Note:
Microfiber dusters grab and hold
dust instead of spreading it around,
and a vacuum that carries the
Green Label seal from the
Carpet and Rug Institute will
protect indoor air quality by
sucking up soil (find approved
vacuums at
• Steam-clean your carpets
every 12 to 18 months to
A saline solution provides a hostile
environment for fungus, decreases
excess perspiration, and softens skin
so antifungal meds can penetrate
deeper, says Suzanne M. Levine,
DPM. Soak your foot every day
for 5 to 10 minutes in a mixture
of 2 teaspoons of salt per pint of
warm water.
Open congested sinuses by massaging
the “Yingxiang” acupressure point,
at the infraorbital nerve, right beside
each nostril, for 30 seconds. This will
clear out your cavity for up to an hour,
says Lee Eisenberg, MD, an associate
clinical professor of otolaryngology
at Columbia University College
of Physicians and Surgeons. For
persistent allergies, quercetin and
the herb stinging nettle leaf have
been shown to reduce inflammatory
responses and calm sneezing and
For quick relief after you’ve rushed
too-hot food into your mouth, an
OTC cough lozenge will lessen the
pain, but one of its ingredients needs
to be benzocaine. Alternatively, the
tannin released from sucking on a
cool, wet black-tea bag also has a
pain-relieving effect and may slow
bleeding from a bitten tongue.
On superficial wounds such as
burns and cuts, honey acts as an
antibacterial agent, rapidly cleaning
out and preventing further infection,
according to an analysis of nearly
two dozen studies by New Zealand
researchers. One found that burns
treated with honey healed, on
average, in 11 days—4 days sooner
than burns treated without it. The
sweet stuff also reduced swelling
and minimized scarring. To get the
fastest results, follow the researchers’
method: Put some honey on sterile
gauze, apply it to the wound, and
change the dressing every 24 hours.
Manuka honey from New Zealand
is available in both pure and ointment
forms at
For a product similar to what the
researchers used, buy any locally
farmed honey.
Enjoy some chocolate. Theobromine,
a chemical in cocoa beans, was more
effective at calming persistent coughs
than codeine was—without causing
drowsiness. Opt for dark chocolate,
which contains more theobromine
than milk chocolate.
How to Apply Sunscreen Sunscreen products can
protect you from sunburn,
but only when applied
correctly. Rubbing
sunscreen vigorously
into the skin reduces
its effectiveness by at
least 25%, says Robert
Sayre, PhD, a Memphis
biophysicist. When in
doubt, count: Six passes
across the skin deliver
the protection promised
on the label.
To zap germs without harming your
skin, first wash cuts with warm
water, skipping the soap (suds can
hurt). (Don’t use hydrogen peroxide
or iodine; both kill bacteria but
also destroy skin cells, which slows
the healing process.) Then, apply
a thin coat of bacitracin (in OTC
antibacterial ointments such as
Neosporin) and cover with a bandage,
advises David Goldberg, MD, chief of
dermatologic surgery at New Jersey
Medical School. This will keep the
area moist and prevent scabbing,
which slows healing and can increase
the risk of scarring.
One study found red or white
wine worked as well as or better
than Pepto-Bismol; the alcohol’s
antibacterial properties killed off
bacteria that cause traveler’s diarrhea
within 20 to 30 minutes. Don’t
overindulge—6 ounces is all you need.
Keep some probiotic supplements
on hand, too; doses of 5 to 10 billion live
cultures of Lactobacillus bacteria have
been shown to calm upset stomachs
and stop diarrhea. And until you’re back
to normal, stick to easy-to-digest BRAT
foods: bananas, rice, applesauce, and
toast. Or think BRAT-Y and have some
yogurt (plain, unsweetened, with live
cultures) as well.
As the outcome of a natural, healthy
process, a little gas is unavoidable. But
to keep it from becoming a painful
embarrassment, follow large meals
with a serving of herbal tea containing
peppermint and caraway oils, which
settle the stomach and aid digestion.
A brisk walk may stimulate the gut
wall, making it easier to pass gas,
found one study.
For headaches, you’ll get just as much
relief from someone rubbing your feet
as your head, says Brian Berman, MD,
director of the Center for Integrative
Medicine at the University of
Maryland School of Medicine.
Acupressurists use points all over
the body to treat headaches. The best
results may come from massaging a
third of the way down the sole of the
foot, where the toes begin.
Since stress is the most common
cause of tension headaches, you
can ease them with relaxation,
says Jennifer Kriegler, MD, of the
Cleveland Clinic. Try one of these
tricks to nip them in the bud.
• Deep rhythmic breathing Shallow
breaths cause CO2 levels in your body
to rise. This dilates the blood vessels in
your head, which can cause pain. Count
to five as you inhale through your nose,
then count to five as you exhale through
your mouth. Repeat 10 times.
• Progressive relaxation Tension
in your shoulder, neck, and back
muscles can cause pain to radiate into
your head. Working up from your feet,
contract each major muscle group one
at a time. Inhale, hold for 8 seconds,
then exhale and release.
Say goodnight to sleeplessness
with a trail mix of dried cherries
and walnuts. Both are good sources
of melatonin—the hormone that
regulates sleep-wake cycles—and can
improve sleep quality, says University
of Texas sleep scientist Russel J.
Reiter, PhD.
If you get bitten, dab on a roll-on
antiperspirant such as Secret. It
contains aluminum salts that help the
body to reabsorb the fluid in the bug
bite, reducing swelling and itching.
Repellents containing picaridin, a
DEET alternative, have been shown
to be safe and effective. We like
nongreasy Off! Skintastic Clean Feel.
Recurring fever blisters (also called
cold sores) can’t be completely
cured—but they can be treated, and
outbreaks prevented, with the amino
acid L-lysine, found in ointments or
tablets in health food stores, says Paul
Horowitz, MD, founder of Discovery
Pediatrics in Valencia, CA. If you’re
among the 60 to 90% of Americans
who carry the herpes virus that causes
blisters, start taking 1,000 mg of the
amino acid 3 times a day with meals as
soon as you feel an outbreak coming
on. (The supplement may not be safe
for those with high cholesterol, heart
disease, or high triglycerides.)
Eat to Ease Arthritis Pain
Experts recommend these eat-right tips to ease the ache.
• Vitamin C Getting less than 150 mg of vitamin C per day tripled
the rate of cartilage breakdown, found a 10-year Boston University
study of 149 people with knee osteoarthritis (OA). High-C foods
include bell peppers, strawberries, and citrus fruit.
• Omega-3s Several clinical trials found that eating 3 g of fish fats
a day relieved the joint pain, swelling, and morning stiffness of
rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and reduced the need for drugs.
Oral ulcers and sores (the nonviral
kind) are frequent complaints of
Horowitz’s cancer patients—they’re a
common side effect of chemotherapy.
“For them, I prescribe what we
call a ‘magic mouthwash,’ ” he
says: “A rinse-and-spit mixture of
equal parts Maalox, Benadryl, and
Xylocaine.” While Xylocaine requires
a prescription, you can make a
similar solution with the other two
over-the-counter components. But
don’t trust young children to spit it
out, he cautions—instead, dab just a
small amount onto the sore with an
Feeling queasy? Drink something
sweet. “Take a look at the ingredients
Soothe a Sore Throat
in over-the-counter nausea remedies:
Many are mostly sugar,” says Andy
Spooner, MD, associate professor
of clinical pediatrics at Cincinnati
Children’s Hospital. “Save yourself
a few bucks and use the fruit syrup
from a can of peaches instead. For
motion sickness, morning sickness, or
stomach bugs, the last thing you need
is a huge meal. But that syrup, or some
flat soda, can take the edge off.”
For tiny nicks, shaving cuts, and paper
cuts, smudge on a bit of lip balm to
act as a sealant. Seal-on, over-thecounter sprays and bandages contain
a clinically tested form of cellulose
that speeds up platelet formation and
stops bleeding, pronto.
A combo of marshmallow, licorice root, and slippery elm bark
calms a sore throat by protectively coating irritated membranes,
reports a study published in the Journal of Alternative and
Complementary Medicine. Sixty adults with inflamed throats
drank either a tea containing these herbs or a placebo beverage four to six times a day for about a week. Those who downed
the brew reported 48% less pain than the placebo group. Throat
Coat, the tea used in the study, is available online and in health
food stores. Some people are sensitive to the herbs in the mix; if
you have allergies or high blood pressure, check with your doctor
before steeping a mugful.
Look Younger Now: Hair,
Makeup & More
Even if you have the time
and money to overhaul
your image with cosmetic
procedures, crash diets, and
hair extensions, don’t. Looking
great for your age isn’t about
making other people think
you have a good surgeon. It’s
about letting the vibrancy
you feel on the inside radiate
out—so much so that people
actually notice. In essence,
you want to defy your age.
“Defy is the perfect word; it
implies taking an active role in
caring for your appearance,”
says Vivian Diller, PhD, a New
York City–based psychologist.
“You’re not throwing in the
towel, but you’re not going
to extremes. It’s a healthy,
positive attitude.”
The hair and makeup
secrets that follow will help
you turn back the clock while
letting those around you know
your time is now!
The Root Cause
Fifty percent of women experience some
kind of hair loss by age 50. “It’s far more
common than people realize,” says Robert
Leonard, DO, founder of Leonard Hair
Transplant Associates in Cranston, RI. But
even though the problem is widespread, it’s
only now that help is more readily available.
“More women in my practice are
addressing this condition,” says Mary Gail
Mercurio, MD, an associate professor of
dermatology and obstetrics and gynecology
at the University of Rochester. “That’s
encouraging, because the sooner hair loss is
diagnosed, the better the chances of finding
its cause and successfully treating it.”
“We all shed around 100 to 150 hairs
per day,” says Paradi Mirmirani, MD, a
dermatologist in Vallejo, CA, who specializes
in hair disorders. But if you’re losing more
than that (you can tell if you see clumps
of hair in the shower drain), your part is
getting wider, or your hair has become
significantly finer, you may be dealing
with female-pattern hair loss (FPHL), a
genetic condition that affects 30 million
American women. Although FPHL (also
called androgenetic alopecia) can
begin as early as your 20s, it’s most
common after menopause. “Multiple
genes play a role, and they have an
equal probability of being inherited
from your mother’s or father’s side,”
explains Mercurio.
Although this type of hair loss
doesn’t necessarily indicate a medical
issue, you should consult your GP
to rule out a thyroid problem, irondeficiency anemia, or an excessive
level of male hormones (common
when you have polycystic ovarian
syndrome or when estrogen levels
drop off around menopause); these
conditions may cause a different type
of hair loss or aggravate FPHL if left
If your doctor determines that
you don’t have these other, more
serious health issues, or resolving
them doesn’t minimize symptoms,
your next stop is the dermatologist’s
office. She will perform a scalp exam
and take a detailed medical and family
history to determine why your hair
is thinning and help you develop a
treatment plan.
Natural Healing
Although you can’t change your genes,
there are some things you can do to
protect the hair you have. But think
lifestyle changes—not hope in a jar.
EAT THIS WAY. If you’re vegetarian or
anemic, you may lack adequate iron,
Body Builders
Hundreds of products promise to pump up thinning hair, so we did the
research for you, sending the latest shampoos, conditioners, and stylers to
Prevention readers to test. Check out their favorites below.
Umberto Beverly Hills Volume Shampoo (Target) Our tester said this
shampoo with hydrolized silk proteins left hair “full of body” and was helpful
plumping strands “on the top of my head.”
Full by Living Proof Root Lifting Spray ( “I use this every day,”
said a tester of this spray with an MIT-developed polymer. “It makes hair
look fuller and thicker.”
Joico Clinicure Lifting Foam Volumizer ( Formulated with botanical
extracts, this foam gives “extra lift on the crown area” while “controlling
Ojon Volumizing 2-Min Hair Mask ( This whipped treatment
“conditioned without weighing hair down” and “made combing easier,”
which “helped to prevent breakage.”
which is essential for strong, healthy
hair. Make sure you’re eating plenty
of leafy greens—such as spinach, kale,
and chard—and beans, tofu, or lean
cuts of red meat, which are all great
sources of iron as well as biotin and
zinc, two nutrients that may also play
a role in hair growth.
suggest scalp massage for clients with
thinning hair. “Use your fingertips
and a bit of argan or coconut oil to
rub in a circular motion for several
minutes before you shampoo,” says
John Masters, owner of John Masters
Organic Salon. Mary Lupo, MD, a
clinical professor of dermatology
at Tulane Medical School and a
Prevention medical advisory board
member, says the theory is that
massage temporarily increases
circulation to the scalp, which may
pump hair follicles with the nutrients
needed for hair growth.
Doctors’ Orders
Following a holistic approach that
incorporates diet tweaks and other
alternative therapies may thicken
hair, but some women still need
medical help to see significant
the best (and only FDA-approved)
treatment for hair loss—no matter
what its cause—is topical minoxidil,
the drug used in Rogaine, an OTC
treatment available in mousse or
liquid formulas. “It’s not clear exactly
how minoxidil works, but studies
show it lengthens the growth phase
of your hair,” says Leonard. Applying
2% minoxidil to the scalp twice daily
has been shown to produce minimal
regrowth in 40% of women and
moderate regrowth in 19%; possible
side effects include itching and
redness of the scalp.
respond to minoxidil, your doctor
might prescribe antiandrogen
medications, which may slow hair
loss and even stimulate growth in
some women. “They inhibit male
hormones that can exacerbate hair
loss,” explains Mirmirani. In select
cases, she may prescribe finasteride,
a 5-alpha reductase inhibitor, which
blocks an enzyme that regulates the
production of androgens. Because
the medication causes birth defects,
it is FDA approved only for men. “In
premenopausal women who are no
longer childbearing, finasteride can
be used off-label,” Mirmirani notes.
Style Smarts
Don’t underestimate the importance
of the right cut, color, and styling
SWITCH YOUR PART. “Changing the
direction of your part can really help
thinning hair,” says Nexxus Creative
Director Kevin Mancuso. Hair tends
to lie flatter against the scalp when
brushed repeatedly in the same
direction; if you typically part your
hair on the left, flip it to the right so
it’s more likely to stand away from
your scalp and look more voluminous.
KEEP COOL. In general, the less heat
you use, the better. “Styling with
heat can damage the hair shaft,”
says Mirmirani. Air-dry whenever
possible, and if you must use heated
tools, pick those with adjustable
settings and keep them on the lowest
level. “This won’t affect hair growth,
but you’ll see less of the breakage
that makes hair look even thinner,”
Mirmirani says.
KEEP UP THE ACTION. Stop holding hot
tools in one spot when you’re styling
your hair. Heat damages the cuticle
so it doesn’t lay smoothly or reflect
as much light. The result? Dull hair.
If you use a blow-dryer or flatiron,
keep it moving at all times.
conjunction with a blow-dryer,
round metal brushes can heat up
significantly, and some brushes with
hard plastic or metal bristles can
cause breakage, according to Angelo
David, owner and creative director of
New York City’s Angelo David Salon.
Instead, try a brush made of gentle
boar bristles or flexible nylon.
GET A VOLUMIZING CUT. In most cases,
shorter cuts are kinder to thinning
hair. “The longer your hair grows,
the more likely it is that sections
will separate and reveal your scalp,”
explains Mancuso. Whatever length
you choose, ask for interior layers,
which are placed throughout your cut,
not just on the ends, to add fullness.
or significantly lightening your hair
color all over can cause damage or
breakage, but well-placed highlights
hide thinning by making your hair
color more similar to the color of your
scalp. Plus, the dye expands the hair
shaft slightly so it appears thicker,
according to David.
Shampoo (even the good stuff ) dries your hair, so limit yourself
to three washes a week. And get a trim every 6 to 8 weeks
to remove the dull, dry tips that really age you. “No product
can make the ends as healthy as new hair growing in,” says
Alastair Carruthers, MD.
A Younger You—
Easy as 1-2-3
It’s easy to prevent redness, age spots,
and pigmentation issues that add
unwanted years.
1. BE GENTLE. Avoid harsh scrubs
and rough towel-drying—and don’t
touch ingrown hairs or clogged
pores. “Many women pick their
skin, not realizing it can cause postinflammatory pigmentation and
scarring,” says Heidi Waldorf, MD, a
dermatologist at Mount Sinai Medical
Center in New York City.
chemicals get into your bloodstream
and find their way to your skin,
making it sallow and spotty,”
explains Alastair Carruthers, MD,
a dermatologist in Vancouver. And
avoid smoky rooms, as repeated
exposure to smoke can also cause
3. SAY YES TO DAILY SPF. You’ve heard
it a million times, but have you gotten
the message? “Even if you don’t
sunbathe, you can get freckles and
little broken capillaries simply from
walking to the car each day without
sunscreen,” says Carruthers.
Saggy skin, wrinkles, and rough
patches add digits to your perceived
age. Here’s how to stay firm and
1. SLIP ON SHADES. “Large lenses help
protect the skin around your eyes
from sun damage and prevent you
from squinting, which can worsen
wrinkles,” says Ranella Hirsch, MD, a
dermatologist in Cambridge, MA. Get
your eyes examined too—squinting as
you try to focus can also deepen lines.
choice is between constantly losing
and gaining, or settling for a few extra
pounds, do the latter. “As we age,
the dieting cycle leads to an unfirm
complexion because skin can’t bounce
back as easily,” says Waldorf.
easy to make a connection between
sunlight and sun spots, but rays
can also weaken skin’s supportive
structure, making it crepey and
causing roughness. As Hirsch points
out, there’s no reason to spend lots
of money trying to firm up your
complexion later when you can spend
a little on sunblock now.
Emphasize Your EYES
These tricks will make your eyes
appear rested and vibrant.
1. LIFT YOUR BROWS. High, full brows
look youthful and help define all your
features, says Los Angeles makeup
artist Brett Freedman. Use a brow
powder or pencil a shade lighter than
your hair color to fill in sparse areas,
then sweep a fine line right above
the top of the arch. Try Wet n Wild
Wake Up
Studies show
that sleeping on a
pillow in the same
position night
after night creates
wrinkles that can
take hours to go
away—or even
become permanent.
To the rescue: the
Mumbani Fresh
Face (mumbani.
com), a cushioned
pillow you wear like
a sleep mask to
minimize pressure
on your face. Our
tester woke up
with fewer crinkles
and claimed to
have slept better,
too. Independent
research confirms
her experience—
75% of users saw
smoother skin,
and more than half
reported sounder
Eyebrow/Eyeliner Pencil (drugstores).
2. CAMOUFLAGE CROW’S-FEET. Nix heavy coverup, which makes lines more obvious, says Matin
Maulawizada of Laura Mercier Cosmetics.
Instead, brighten the area with concealer
under the outer third of your lower lashes and a
creamy highlighter such as Benefit Ooh La Lift
( just below any lines.
3. REDUCE “PARENTHESES.” To diminish the lines
that run from your nose to your mouth, apply
concealer one shade lighter than your skin over
the shadow below the fold only, not over the entire
crease, says Maulawizada. This pro trick reduces
the appearance of a defined edge. Try Laura
Mercier Secret Camouflage (
Better Your BODY
A spotted chest, wrinkly hands, and rough, dry
arms and legs are true-age giveaways. Get back
your youth with these fixes.
1. COOL OFF. “Every dermatologist would agree
that dry skin can make you look older,” says Hirsch.
Moisturizing helps, but there’s an even easier fix:
Take shorter, cooler baths and showers because
hot water dehydrates skin.
2. LIFT WEIGHTS AND DIG IN. Aerobic exercise is
good, but strength training is better if saggy skin on
your body is the issue. “Skin looks more taut over
supportive muscles,” Hirsch says. If you’re hungry
postworkout, eat! “After a certain age, a few extra
pounds can actually help your face look younger,”
she says.
3. DO MORE NAKED. Smooth on lotion or sunscreen
after you dress and you may miss areas. Instead,
apply products straight out of the shower so
you remember to apply to your neck, chest, and
hands, too.
Apply Makeup Like a Pro
How do makeup artists create a
flawlessly blended look? We put our
fingers on the answer!
1. FOUNDATION “After smoothing base
on with your fingers, rub your hands
together and press your palms to your
face. The warmth helps spread the
makeup so it looks perfectly blended.”
—Mally Roncal, makeup artist and
creator of Mally Beauty
To disguise a double chin, apply
a light layer of foundation or matte
bronzer two shades darker than your
skin under your chin, shading over
any jowl. Try Rimmel London Natural
Bronzer (drugstores). Blend toward your
neck, using a sponge or brush. —Matin
Maulawizada, Laura Mercier Cosmetics
2. BLUSH “Hold your three middle
fingers firmly together and dip them
into blush—creams work best. Swirl
from the apple of your cheek up
toward your temple. The edges will be
seamless.” —Carmindy, makeup artist
and author of Crazy Busy Beautiful
3. EYELINER “For soft definition, put
the very tip of your pinky into a dark
shadow and gently run it into the
lash line with small back-and-forth
motions. If your lashes wiggle as
you do this, you’re doing it right.”
—Raychel Wade, La Prairie Colour
4. HIGHLIGHTER “Dip the pad of your
pinky in a light-colored shadow and
place at the inner corner to brighten
and open the eye. This digit is the
perfect size for the job.” —Eric Sakas,
makeup artist and cofounder of
Vapour Organic Beauty
5. LIPSTICK “After swiping it on,
push in the formula by patting with
your finger. This allows the color
to settle into your lips so it lasts
longer, bleeds less into fine lines, and
looks effortless.” —Molly R. Stern,
CoverGirl celebrity makeup artist
Long-Lasting Lip Color
What’s the best long-wear lipstick that won’t dry out your lips?
We’ve found that the top performers are stain and gloss combos.
The colored stains sink in and set, while the gloss toppers keep
lips conditioned and color gleaming. Prevention editors’ faves:
L’Oreal Paris Infallible Never Fail Lipcolour Compact (drugstores), Jane Iredale Lip Fixation (, and
Mark Gloss Gorgeous Stay-On Lip Stain (—a
clever 2-in-1 formula.
No-Surgery Mini Face-Lift
High-powered resurfacing laser
treatments are bringing lunch-hour
rejuvenation closer to reality. One
such product approved by the FDA
for wrinkles around the eyes, as well
as age spots, stretch marks, acne
scars, and rough skin, is Fractional
Laser Skin Resurfacing, nicknamed
Fraxel. It involves considerably
less recovery time, redness, and
discomfort than the high-powered
CO2 resurfacing laser.
The innovation The laser beam is
split into thousands of microscopic
treatment zones, selectively heating
tiny dots of skin. (The pixilated
effect isn’t visible to the naked
eye.) Healthy new skin cells quickly
fill the damaged areas in between
treated spots. Healing is faster
than when the whole top layer
of skin is removed.
What you get After a $400 to
$5,000 session, depending on the
number of body parts treated,
you’ll see fresh new skin within a
few days. In a few weeks, skin
appears younger-looking, smoother,
and more vibrant. Usually a wholeface treatment takes four to six
20-minute sessions, spaced 7 to
10 days apart. Even with an
anesthetic cream applied 45 minutes
in advance, you’ll feel a mild prickling
or burning sensation. For several
hours afterward, skin will feel tight
and appear sunburned. You can
camouflage the redness right away
with makeup. Mild to moderate
flaking may last up to 2 weeks.
When we tried it Without having
to go through the week or so of
recovery that comes with a CO2
laser treatment, this left our tester’s
complexion as smooth as a baby’s
bottom after the final treatment and
also diminished age spots.
What the experts say “Fraxel
turns back the clock. It doesn’t
turn it off,” says Roy Geronemus,
MD, a clinical professor of
dermatology at New York University
Medical Center. “It’s too soon to
tell if it will be as effective a skin
resurfacer as a CO2 laser. In some
ways the two are similar, but the
Fraxel may not tackle deeper
wrinkles as successfully,” he adds.
Where to find it At
dermatologists’ and plastic surgeons’
offices. To locate a doctor near you,
check out
Walk Off a Size Now
Whether you want to melt fat, boost
energy, lift mood, or just be a bit more
toned in a few important places, we
have the workouts for you. They’ve
all been road-tested by Prevention
readers and are ready to deliver fast
results. Pick your goal and discover
new, fun ways to achieve it.
More Walking Rewards
Practicing the walking routines in this report, you’ll be able
to buy clothes a size smaller. Here are three other possible
benefits when you commit to an exercise program.
The simple act of exercising—regardless of your weight or
fitness level—can make you feel better about how you look,
possibly due to the release of feel-good hormones, finds a
review of 57 studies on exercise and body image.
Just two 40-minute workouts a week is enough to stop
dangerous belly fat in its tracks, according to University of
Alabama at Birmingham research. The waistlines of those who
worked out less expanded an average of 3 inches. Exercise may
lower levels of hormones, such as cortisol, that promote belly fat.
Walking 2 miles 5 times a week may be more effective at
preventing diabetes than running nearly twice as much,
report Duke University researchers. Because fat is the primary
fuel for moderate exercise, walking may better improve the
body’s ability to release insulin and control blood sugar.
Flip Your Fat-Burning Switch!
You could shrink a size
(or more) this month by
adding high-intensity
walks to your routine.
You’ll burn more fat
during and after your
workouts. And there are
options to fit everyone’s
needs—a 10-minute
routine for busy days
and an indoor option
for rainy weather.
For best results, do at
least 20 minutes of highintensity walking (any
combo of the workouts in
this section or any of the
hill or stair routines on
pp. 36, 39, and 40—the
longer walks will slim
you down faster) on
3 nonconsecutive days a
week. On alternate days,
do moderate-intensity
activity for about 30
minutes per session.
Perfect for
the weekend!
Drop-It-Fast Sprint
25 to 30 minutes
The quicker you walk, the farther
you can go and the more pounds
you’ll melt off. Here’s a fun
routine that burns as many
as 175 calories*.
THE WORKOUT After warming
up for 5 minutes, walk as fast
as you can for 10 minutes. Note
how far you went. Then turn
around and walk back at a brisk
pace, slowing your speed to cool
down as you get closer to your
starting point. Each time you do
this workout, aim to walk faster
and go farther than your initial
turnaround point.
Treadmills are the perfect excuse buster—no need to
worry about weather, traffic, or darkness. Seeing your
speed increase as you become more fit is also a huge
motivator. Try this routine from Lee Scott, creator of the
DVD Simple Steps for a Great Walking Workout, to blast
more than 150 calories* in half an hour.
Hour-plus workouts
can crank up your
postexercise calorie
burn nearly fivefold,
compared with a
30-minute walk. That’s
on top of the nearly
350 calories you’ll
melt during your walk.
This can also get
you in shape to take
on a bigger goal, such
as a half marathon
(13.1 miles) or a
multiday fund-raising
walk. It’s also a social
way to slim down: Plan
your route so you meet
up with friends, and
walk with each for
part of your route.
“Meeting someone
along the way helped
keep me from getting
bored,” says Prevention
reader Kim Kline of
Jefferson City, MO.
Treadmill Slimmer
30 minutes
Megacalorie Burner
60+ minutes
3.4 mph**
PHASE 1 (repeat intervals below for 6 min)
60-sec speed interval
4.0 mph
60-sec recovery interval
3.4 mph
11:00–15:59 PHASE 2 (repeat for 5 min)
40-sec speed interval
4.2 mph
20-sec recovery interval
3.4 mph
16:00–20:59 PHASE 3 (repeat for 5 min)
*Calorie burn estimates in this section are
based on a 150-pound person and will vary
depending on weight, walking speed, and
workout duration.
30-sec speed interval
4.4 mph
30-sec recovery interval
3.4 mph
21:00–25:59 PHASE 4 (repeat for 5 min)
20-sec speed interval
4.6 mph
40-sec recovery interval
3.4 mph
26:00–30:00 COOLDOWN
3.4 mph
**Start at a comfortable speed. Increase 0.6 mph from
there for Phase 1 speed intervals. For each subsequent
phase, increase your speed intervals by 0.2 mph.
Belly-Busting Walk
10+ minutes
High-intensity workouts like the
ones in this section can shrink
5 times more belly fat than
moderate-intensity workouts.
To zero in on shaping your abs,
use these toning tips during
any walk.
• Focus on drawing your abs
in toward your spine. Try
to maintain the contraction
throughout your walk, but
don’t hold your breath.
• Imagine that your legs extend
up above your navel. As one leg
swings forward and back, that
hip should follow. This slight hip
swivel causes your lower torso
to rotate, activating more ab
muscles to tone your midsection
More Energy & a Brighter Mood
Super Fat Blast
10 minutes
Crank up the intensity with metabolismrevving bursts of high-impact activities.
You’ll burn nearly 70% more calories
than if you walked at a steady pace.
Warmup, easy to
moderate pace
Brisk walk
Fast walk
Jumping jacks
Fast walk
Side jumps,
feet together
Fast walk
Cooldown, easy pace
Even a 10-minute stroll can
instantly recharge your energy
by increasing circulation. Go
for 30 minutes and you could
get a whopping 85% energy
boost, research shows. And to
really wake up your body and
brain, try these stimulating
walks that get your mind and
senses working, too. The good
feeling may last up to 12 hours!
Anytime you need a quick
pick-me-up, try one of these
routines. These workouts can
also help if your goal is to lose
weight or firm up.
inner thighs!
Happiness Walk
10+ Minutes
Revitalize your mind and body
with an easy walk of any length
that includes these stress-busting
techniques from Carolyn Scott
Kortge, author of Healing Walks for
Hard Times. Says Prevention reader
Lisa DiMarzio of Ware, MA: “When
I tried it after a tense meeting,
I felt calm almost immediately
instead of reliving the event that
made me stressed.”
Step 1 Focus on your feet. Feel
the firm ground beneath you as
each foot rolls from heel to toe.
Try to hold awareness of your
steps for 2 to 3 minutes.
Step 2 Turn your attention to
breathing. Lift your torso to stand
upright and increase lung space.
As you inhale, imagine you are
drawing in renewed energy. Exhale
tiredness and pain. Let fresh life
flow into your lungs and your cells.
Step 3 Coach yourself. Thinking
Fresh air in, stale air out as you
breathe can help you maintain
Brainpower Booster
Changing direction as you walk—forward, backward,
or sideways—keeps your mind alert, turns up your
calorie burn, and activates some often-underused
muscles, such as inner and outer thighs. This routine is
best done on a school track (most are ¼ mile around).
Lap 1 Start at the beginning of a curve on the track.
Walk as you normally would to warm up for a full lap.
Lap 2
• Turn sideways so right foot is in front. Sidestep or
shuffle around the curved part of the track.
• Walk backward on the straight section.
• Sidestep through the next curve with left foot in front.
• Walk forward on the straight section.
Lap 3 Repeat lap 2, walking sideways, backward,
sideways, and forward.
Lap 4 Walk forward, slowing your pace to cool down.
This is a 1-mile walk if you use a ¼-mile track. You
can do more laps to extend it or work up to doing half
or even full laps of each type of walking.
Head for the
5+ Minutes
A dose of nature can
boost your mood
and energize you in
just 5 minutes. If you
exercise in a natural
setting and go
longer (a lunchtime
stroll in a park or
an all-day hike in
the mountains),
you can improve
your memory and
attention 20% more
than you can by
walking in an urban
environment. That’s
because there are
fewer distractions
and it’s more
relaxing. To find offroad walking routes
in your area, go to
Firm Your Arms, Butt & Thighs
By adding some toning
moves or techniques to your
routine, you can turn walks
into total-body workouts and
shape your legs and butt even
Aim to target each body
area 2 or 3 times a week. For
example, do the Sculpt All
Over (p. 39) once or twice a
week, and do a lower-body
and an upper-body routine
(or two) on alternate days.
Don’t work the same muscle
groups on back-to-back days.
For speedier firming, do
walking routines from other
sections on in-between days
to melt flab and show off
your sexy muscles.
Double-Duty Toner
Use a pair of walking poles
($90 and up). Research shows
they can boost calorie burn by
up to 46% and get your arms and
core involved for all-over firming.
The poles also reduce impact on
your joints. Go to nordicwalkingna.
com for more information.
83593.jpg 15%
Booty Blast
25 minutes
No outdoor hills to
give your glutes a
workout? Here’s
a fun treadmill
routine from
Tracey Staehle,
a Connecticutbased trainer
and creator of
the DVD Walking
Strong. Reports
Prevention reader
Carrie Pasquale
of Petal, MS: “I
could really feel
it in my butt.”
You can do the
full 25-minute
routine or just
1 or 2 of the
5-minute hill
climbs for a
shorter session.
do it on your
lunch break!
Increase speed
0.2 mph and incline
1% each minute.
Maintain speed
but increase incline
1% each minute.
Maintain incline as
you increase speed
0.3 mph each minute.
Decrease speed
0.2 mph and incline
1% each minute.
Arm Shaper
20 minutes
Grab an exercise band
and do these moves
while you walk to firm
your upper body.
with 4 minutes of
PV-1010-WALK09_01.tif 11%
PV-1010-WALK09_02.tif 10%
easy walking. Then
pick up your pace to
a moderate intensity
and do the first
exercise for 25 reps.
SHOULDER SHAPER Loop band around back. Hold each
When you’re finished,
end with palms up, elbows bent in at waist, forearms
drape band around
angled out to sides (A). Keeping shoulders down and
neck and speed up
back, press hands up and away from body to about
to a brisk pace, like
shoulder height (B). Slowly lower to start position.
you’re in a hurry, for
2 minutes. Repeat the
25-rep toning/2-minute
brisk-walking intervals
until you’ve done all
the exercises. Cool
PV-1010-WALK09_04.tif 10%
down with 4 minutes PV-1010-WALK09_03.tif 11%
of easy walking. You
can make moves
harder by placing
hands closer together
CHEST CIRCLE With band around back, extend arms
so you’re using less
in front, crossing wrists (A). Circle arms out to sides
band, or easier by
(B), bend elbows, and bring hands in to chest. Repeat,
separating hands
crossing opposite arm on top.
for more slack.
Hold band wide
overhead (A).
Lower arms,
keeping elbows
bent slightly (B),
and pull band
down behind
head. Slowly
return to start
Hold band at
shoulder height
in front of you,
hands wide,
elbows bent
90 degrees
(A). Keeping
upper arms still,
straighten arms
and press hands
out to sides (B).
Slowly return to
start position.
Butt Firmer
16+ minutes
PV-1010-WALK10_01.tif 12%
PV-1010-WALK10_02.tif 11%
PV-1010-WALK10_03.tif 13%
PV-1010-WALK10_04.tif 11%
Walking uphill
activates 25% more
muscle fibers for
faster firming than
strolling on flat
terrain. For best
results, find a hill
that takes 2 to
2½ minutes to climb
and try this workout
from Judy Heller,
a certified personal
trainer and master
racewalker in
Portland, OR.
Warm up at an
easy pace for
5 to 10 minutes.
Then walk up and
down the hill; follow
with 2 minutes of
brisk walking on
a level surface.
Repeat the hill and
level walk for your
desired workout
length. Finish with
5 minutes of easy
walking to cool
Sculpt All Over
25 to 40
During this
workout, you’ll
moves as
you walk, for
cardio plus
toning. Using
the lottery
(below) from
Lee Scott
to pick your
will prevent
boredom and
challenge new
NEWS0301.jpg 19% FLOP
THE WORKOUT Write at least nine no-equipment strength
moves (unless you’re walking indoors and have equipment
handy) on pieces of paper. Choose a variety of exercises
that will hit all the major muscle groups; include walking
lunges, bench pushups, triceps dips, planks, and power
jumps (for more, go to Drop
them in a jar and draw three out before a walk. Warm up
at an easy pace for 3 to 5 minutes, then walk briskly for
5 to 10 minutes. Stop and do one of the strength moves.
Repeat the brisk walking (5 to 10 minutes), followed by
the next strength move. Repeat once more to complete the
final move. Cool down for 5 minutes at an easy pace.
Worth a Second Look
Indoor Leg Toner
5 minutes
Do this quick workout
anywhere there are
stairs to double your
calorie burn. Prevention
reader Barb Best of
Erie, PA, posted it at
the bottom of her stairs
as a reminder to do it.
1. Walk up and down
one flight normally.
2. Slowly walk up
sideways, crossing
bottom foot over top.
Keep head up. Walk
down normally.
Repeat, facing the
opposite direction.
3. Step up on first stair,
then down, starting with
right foot (right up, left
up, right down, left
down) 10 times. Repeat,
starting with left foot.
4. Climb stairs two steps
at a time; come down
quickly using each step.
5. Run up; walk down
PV-1010-WALK12_01.tif 19%
6. Repeat numbers 4 and
5 another four times.
7. At bottom, place right
foot on first or second
step, bend knees, and
lower into a lunge. Keep
right knee directly over
ankle as you do so. Push
off with right foot to
return to start. Repeat
with left leg. Alternate
legs for 20 lunges, total.
8. Walk up and down
normally one time.
Michele Stanten, former fitness director at Prevention and author of Walk Off Weight, designed several of these workouts.
The foods we eat—or don’t—may
speed certain physical and mental
changes along, aging us before our
time. The reason is simple. “We eat
too many processed foods,” says
David Katz, MD, director of Yale
University’s Prevention Research
Center. “They’re often high in
calories and low in nutrients, so we
end up with islands of deficiencies in
a sea of excess.”
These inadequacies can result
in symptoms such as those below.
Work with your doctor to determine
whether adjusting your diet or adding
a supplement can help you look—and
You Have Less Energy
You May Need More: Vitamin B12
Found only in foods that are derived
from animals, this nutrient helps
regulate your metabolism and energy
production and is key to maintaining
a healthy brain and nervous system.
“Fatigue is a classic sign of B12
deficiency, which usually occurs
in people who don’t eat very much
animal protein,” says Danine Fruge,
MD, director of women’s and family
health at the Pritikin Longevity
Center & Spa in Miami. Chewing a
lot of antacids to relieve heartburn
can also lead to B12 deficiency
because antacids interfere with B12
will ask about what you eat, whether
you’re getting enough sleep, and the
medications you take. If you don’t
eat many (or any) meat or dairy foods
or take supplements containing B12,
you sleep 7 to 8 hours each night, and
you’re physically active, odds are good
that your low energy is due to a B12
FOOD FIX Have two servings of
“nonfat dairy foods, such as fat-free
milk or nonfat yogurt, and 3 to
4 ounces of lean protein daily.
Good sources of B12 include seafood,
such as fish, clams, oysters, and
mussels, as well as lean beef and
pork, chicken, and fortified cereal.
1,000 mcg of vitamin B12 in tablet
form every day to raise and maintain
your B12 levels.
Your Joints Ache
You May Need More:
Manganese and Copper
Because manganese and copper are
both essential for maintaining joint
cartilage and flexibility, “in most
cases, supplementing these nutrients
reverses the joint deterioration
and eliminates the pain,” says
Dale Peterson, MD, founder of the
Wellness Clubs of America. “The
body can actually repair a significant
amount of damage if it’s given the
proper support.”
a simple blood test, your physician
can easily determine whether your
joint pain is related to garden-variety
wear and tear or a more serious
inflammatory condition. “If the result
is normal, you can be assured that
the joint pain isn’t caused by serious
rheumatic disease,” says Peterson.
FOOD FIX Nuts, beef, and spinach are
good sources of these nutrients, but
you won’t be able to eat enough to get
all your copper and manganese, so opt
for a supplement, Peterson advises.
of copper and 5 mg of manganese
044350_Quesad_01.JPG 28% FLOP
each day. Within 2 to 3 months, your
joints should feel less painful.
You’re More Forgetful
You May Need More:
Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids
“These fatty acids are part of the
brain’s building blocks,” explains
Andrew Weil, MD, director of the
Arizona Center for Integrative
Medicine at the University of Arizona.
“If you’re not getting enough in your
diet, the architecture of the brain
becomes weak, and brain function,
including memory, suffers.” But it’s
not only the amount of omega-3s
that’s important; the balance between
omega-3s and omega-6s is equally
crucial. “Our diets are flooded with
omega-6 fatty acids, mostly from
processed foods,” says Weil. “The more
omega-6s you eat, the more omega-3s
you need to balance your levels. Most
of us aren’t eating enough omega-3s
and are eating too many omega-6s.”
review of what you eat is all she needs.
“If there’s no fish, walnuts, or freshly
ground flaxseed in your diet, and
the fats you eat come mainly from
meat, you’re not getting any omega3s,” explains Manuel Villacorta, RD,
an American Dietetic Association
spokesperson in San Francisco.
FOOD FIX First, reduce the amount
of refined and processed foods you
eat as much as possible, and cook
with olive or canola oil. Then, eat
3½ ounces of wild salmon and
3½ ounces of herring, sardines, or
halibut each week. Add 2 tablespoons
of freshly ground flaxseed to cereal,
whole grain side dishes, or shakes
daily, and garnish salads or cereal
with 1 tablespoon of walnuts 5 days a
week. Finally, enjoy 9 to 12 almonds
4 times a week.
2,000 mg of fish oil daily. Look for
1,000 mg capsules of combined
docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and
eicosaentaenoic acid (EPA).
Your Blood
Pressure Is Rising
You May Need More: Potassium
“Having too little potassium in your
diet magnifies the toxic effects of
excessive salt intake,” Fruge says.
Most processed foods have added
sodium but no extra potassium, so if
your meals come from boxes, you’re
likely at risk. Worsening the situation,
when your kidneys try to flush out the
salt, you lose even more potassium.
“The imbalance damages blood
vessels, driving up blood pressure,”
Fruge notes. “Eating better can
correct the problem—I’ve seen people
drop 30 points in 3 days.”
of your diet reveals all your GP
needs to know. If there’s any doubt,
your doctor can evaluate your
cardiovascular function with blood
tests to check blood sugar, cholesterol
levels, and kidney function,
along with stress tests, body-fat
measurements, and ultrasounds of
your heart and arteries.
FOOD FIX Cut your sodium
consumption to no more than
1,500 mg per day, and eat seven
to nine servings of fruits and
vegetables every day.
supplements can lead to arrhythmia
or other cardiac problems, says Fruge.
Stick with produce to avoid those side
effects. Good sources of potassium are
bananas, broccoli, citrus fruit, dried
apricots, potatoes (especially their
skin), squash, sweet potatoes, and
milk and yogurt.
Weight Loss Supplements to Consider
Research shows the nutrients you need to stay healthy may also regulate hunger.
Experts recommend getting them through food first, but because many women fall
short, consider these supplements for extra insurance.
Slimming Supplement
Recommended Intake
Health Bonus
Vitamin DPeople who have
high vitamin D levels at the
start of a diet lose more
weight, suggests research
presented at the Endocrine
Society’s annual meeting.
Get 1,000 IU through fatty
fish and fortified cereal,
juice, and dairy products or
by taking a D3 supplement
Vitamin D fights
cancer and helps
your body absorb
Prebiotics Overweight
adults who took a prebiotic
supplement lost an average
of 2 pounds over 12 weeks,
compared with those on a
placebo, found Canadian
Aim for 4 to 20 g daily
from foods such as
garlic, onions, artichokes,
and fortified yogurt, or
Prebiotics stimulate
the growth of
healthy bacteria
(probiotics) in the
gut to regulate
Calcium When women
deficient in calcium took
1,200 mg of calcium daily
for 15 weeks, they lost
4 times as much weight as
those who took a placebo.
Get 1,000 to 1,200 mg
daily from low-fat dairy and
leafy green vegetables or
a 500 or 600 mg calcium
carbonate or citrate
supplement taken twice
a day.
Calcium builds
and maintains
strong bones to
prevent injury and
Multivitamin In a 15-week
study, women who popped
a daily multivitamin felt
45% less hungry than those
who took a placebo.
Eat plenty of colorful fresh
fruits and veggies, whole
grains, and lean protein
daily, and take a multi that
provides no more than
100% of your daily value for
each nutrient.
The wide range
of nutrients in
multivitamins plays
a critical part in
immune function.
Safety tips:
Unusually large
amounts of turmeric
imbrfs-00082829-001.jpg 35.5% may cause stomach
upset. Medicinal
turmeric preparations
Most Americans
should not be given to
think of turmeric
children under 2. For
(Curcuma longa) as
older children and people
an ingredient in Indian
over 65, start with low-strength
curry. But Indians also
preparations, and increase the
think of it as a healing herb.
strength if necessary.
A great deal of scientific
research proves turmeric has antiWild Dog Rose
inflammatory, antioxidant, and
The rose hips of the wild dog rose
antitumor properties. In one animal
(Rosa canina) can help conquer
trial, a turmeric compound was
the ache of arthritic joints. When
almost as effective as cortisone at
researchers in Denmark gave
treating acute inflammation. Several
112 osteoarthritis sufferers either
studies also show that curcumin,
dried rose hip powder capsules or
an active chemical in turmeric, has
a placebo once a day, 66% of those
anti-inflammatory action—even
taking the rose hip reported less
being as effective as ibuprofen in
pain and stiffness after 3 months.
treating osteoarthritis of the knees.
(Only a third of the placebo group
Since Indian research shows that
felt better.) Rose hip acts as an
even a teaspoon of turmeric has
anti-inflammatory to relieve
medicinal value, it makes sense to
joint swelling and pressure. The
season foods with it. Turmeric tastes
supplement in the study was
pleasant, but in large amounts it
LitoZin, available as I-flex from
becomes somewhat bitter.
The Salt
Addiction That Can Make You Fat
It’s no secret that a high-sodium diet
raises blood pressure, which in turn
can cause heart attacks and strokes.
But studies show that salt is even
more dangerous than we thought:
Eating too much has been linked to
osteoporosis, dementia, cancer, and
other serious health problems (see
“The Silent Killer,” p. 50). It can also
add inches to your waist.
Based on this research, the US
government is revisiting its sodium
guidelines. The new thinking:
Adults should consume no more
than 1,500 mg of sodium per day
(two-thirds of a teaspoon), down
from the previous limit of less than
2,300 mg.
This adjustment means that
Americans are seriously overdosing
on salt, getting 3,436 mg a day—
more than double the recommended
amount. Where’s all that sodium
coming from? The greatest concern
isn’t the salt you shake on at the
table—it’s the salt that’s already
in your food. The biggest culprits
are processed and packaged foods,
which load up on salt for flavor, but
also for color and texture and to
prevent spoilage. About 80% of the
sodium in our diets is found in the
premade crackers, cookies, cereals,
soups, frozen dinners, and pasta
sauces we eat at home. And that
doesn’t even cover fast food and
other restaurant meals.
Here’s how a single ingredient
with zero calories can be such a
major cause of weight gain and killer
health problems—and how you can
sleuth out hidden sodium to protect
your health.
Excerpted and adapted from The Salt Solution by Heather K. Jones, RD, with the editors of Prevention (Rodale ©2011).
Why Salt Is Addictive
Your body does need some sodium—
to maintain the right balance of
fluids, transmit nerve impulses, and
contract and relax your muscles—
but only about 500 mg per day.
When you eat far more than that,
your brain chemistry is altered.
Research shows that consuming
salt triggers the release of dopamine,
the neurotransmitter associated
with the brain’s pleasure center,
making salty foods as addictive as
nicotine and alcohol. Therefore,
as with any addiction, eating salty
foods makes you crave more. Since
so many of them—like french fries
and fast-food sandwiches—are also
high in fat and calories, OD’ing on
salt packs on the pounds.
Loading up on salt also increases
thirst. This wouldn’t be an issue if
we usually turned to water—but we
don’t. Research has found a close
link between the consumption of
salt and intake of sugary beverages.
(Diet sodas aren’t the answer:
They’re full of sodium!)
Eating too much salt may cause
weight gain in less-noticeable ways
too—by changing how your body
makes and metabolizes fat. Studies
show that a high-salt diet boosts the
production of insulin, the hormone
that tells the body to store excess
sugar as fat. Simply put, the more
insulin you have, the more fat you
store and the more weight you gain.
Kicking Your Salt Habit
You can cut back on sodium in the
next 2 weeks, which will boost your
metabolism and increase your
energy. You’ll also feel thinner
because you’ll drop water weight
from bloating. Losing those pounds
and inches will help motivate you to
make low-salt eating a way of life as
you reset your taste buds to enjoy
low-sodium foods.
The good news is that your palate
will adapt quickly. Most of us have
about 10,000 taste buds, each one
made up of 50 to 150 receptor cells
that live for only 1 to 2 weeks and
then are replaced by new receptors.
So after eating a cleaner diet for
2 weeks, you’ll not only begin to taste
and enjoy more subtle flavors, you’ll
also have less of a craving for salt.
Here are the basics for this 14-day
“salt cleanse.”
• Clear your home of salty snacks
and other sodium-riddled
• Stock up on fresh vegetables and
fruits and on low- or no-sodium
• Eat three 300-calorie meals per
day, each with less than 300 mg
sodium. To find suggestions for to buy a copy of the book
Berry-Mango Smoothie: A Mineral Boost Juice
Combine 1 cup chopped kale, ¾ cup
frozen mixed berries, ¾ cup fat-free
milk, ½ medium frozen banana, ½ cup
fresh or frozen mango cubes, and
2 teaspoons honey in a blender. Puree
until smooth, about 1 to 2 minutes.
Calories: 321, Saturated Fat: 1 g,
Fiber: 4 g, Sodium: 191 mg,
Potassium: 934 mg, Calcium: 526 mg,
Magnesium: 88 mg
PV-0409-FOUR0201.JPG 34% for two more
Mineral Boost Juice recipes
recipes, go to prevention.
com and search “salt
solution recipes.” Or go to to buy
the book this information is
excerpted from.
• With each 300-calorie meal,
enjoy as many nutrient-dense,
low-calorie vegetables (beet
greens, cabbage, carrots,
celery, kale, onions, spinach,
and more) as you like. When
steamed, microwaved, roasted,
or boiled without added sauces
and/or salt, they add bulk
without adding many calories.
• Drink a 300-calorie Mineral
Boost Juice daily, which
provides potassium, calcium,
and magnesium to help rid
your body of excess sodium.
(Berry-Mango Smoothie
recipe, this page, is just one
scrumptious example.)
• Eliminate processed and
packaged foods, as well as
• Steer clear of sauces and
dressings that may contain
added oil, sugar, salt, and
calories. Try new herbs and
spices to add zip to your food.
• Measure all your food
• Keep a food journal. For each
meal, track calories, sodium,
saturated fat, and fiber.
Want Some Chips with Your Salt?
Most regular chips have 160 to 180 mg of sodium per 1-ounce serving (about
15 chips). Watch out for flavored chips, which can contain compounds of sodium
not found in other chips. The worst offender of all: salt-and-vinegar.
Of 12 varieties, these are the Prevention picks:
PV-0111-SALT04_09.tif 7.5%
PV-0111-SALT04_10.tif 7.5%
Lay’s Lightly
Salted 90 mg
Wise Lightly
Salted 80 mg
Terra Original
50 mg
PV-0111-SALT04_12.tif 8%
Kettle Brand
Unsalted 5 mg
There’s Salt in That?
In a typical day, the sodium adds up fast—hidden in foods you probably didn’t
even know were salty.
BREAKFAST 1 whole grain bagel (490 mg) with 2 Tbsp fat-free cream cheese
(211 mg) and 6 oz yogurt (95 mg) = 796 mg
SNACK 2 Tbsp peanut butter (147 mg) on 6 wheat crackers (194 mg) = 341 mg
LUNCH Sandwich with 2 slices low-sodium turkey (432 mg), 1 slice American
cheese (266 mg), and 2 tsp mustard (114 mg) in a flour tortilla (490 mg) with
1 dill pickle spear (306 mg) and 1 c vegetable soup (960 mg) = 2,568 mg
SNACK 1 wheat pita (340 mg) with 2 Tbsp hummus (114 mg) = 454 mg
DINNER ½ c pasta (4 mg) with ½ c jarred tomato sauce (480 mg) and
2 meatballs (232 mg), 1 slice garlic bread (400 mg), and salad with reduced-fat
ranch dressing (336 mg) = 1,452 mg
DESSERT Homemade apple crisp (495 mg) with ½ c vanilla ice cream (53 mg)
and 2 Tbsp caramel sauce (60 mg) = 608 mg
Total 6,219 mg, more than quadruple the daily recommended amount!
The Silent Killer
It’s no longer just heart attacks
and strokes you need to worry
about if you eat too much
salt. Evidence now connects
sodium to other serious health
problems, including:
Cancer Salted foods are linked
to a 15% increase in cancer risk,
29639.jpg 42% FLOP
according to a 2010 Japanese
study. In other research, high salt
intake has been associated with
deaths from stomach cancer. Salty foods irritate the stomach lining, which
can cause infection by H. pylori bacteria, which lead to stomach cancer.
Osteoporosis High-salt diets have been shown to increase calcium loss,
which weakens bone and leads, over time, to osteoporosis. A 2-year
study of postmenopausal women connected a decrease in hip bone
density to sodium intake.
Diabetes Eating lots of salt may promote insulin resistance. Diabetes
already puts you at greater risk of hypertension and heart disease—and
a high salt intake only raises these risks.
Dementia Hypertension may also affect your brain. Results of the
2010 Women’s Health Initiative Memory Study, which took MRI scans
of 1,400 women age 65 or older, revealed that those with high blood
pressure had more abnormal brain lesions 8 years later. Other research
shows that people with hypertension are up to 600% more likely to
develop stroke-related dementia.
Sleep Apnea High blood pressure is a villain here, too. It is a vicious cycle—
sleep apnea causes sleep deprivation, which can increase blood pressure.
Kidney Disease Hypertension eventually damages blood vessels throughout
your body, including the kidneys. The damage can be gradual: Symptoms
may not occur until kidney function is less than 10% of normal.
“When an adult fractures a bone, it
should be a call to action to prevent
the next one,” says John Bilezikian,
MD, professor of medicine and
specialist in metabolic bone diseases
at New York’s Columbia-Presbyterian
Medical Center. That’s why the
National Osteoporosis Foundation
recommends that adults who suffer a
low-trauma fracture (such as breaking
a bone after falling from ground level
or a low height) have a bone-density
test, followed by medications if
According to the National
Institutes of Health, 50% of women
age 50 and older will suffer a fracture.
And Bilezikian notes that the vast
majority of fractures in adults over
age 40 are highly predictive of future
fractures. “Having a fracture at
least doubles your risk of sustaining
another fracture within a year.”
Americans suffer an estimated
300,000 hip fractures every year, and
recovery is painful and difficult: After
a hip fracture, only 15% of patients
can walk across a room unaided after
6 months; 25% require long-term care
and may become disabled.
While there are steps you can take
to stop osteoporosis—and even help
rebuild fragile bone—the key to longterm health is assessing how strong
your bones are now.
Testing, Testing
You need to be tested to know where
you stand, says Bilezikian. If you have
risk factors, such as a family history
of osteoporosis, get a bone mineral
density (BMD) test—a quick, painless
measurement of the hip, arm, and
other skeletal sites—earlier than age
65. That means getting checked at the
onset of menopause or when you stop
hormone therapy. Depending on the
results, your doctor may recommend
a more comprehensive dual-energy
x-ray absorptiometry (DEXA), which
measures the spine, hip, or total body.
It’s also important to be aware
of the side effects of medications
you take regularly. Drugs can leach
calcium from bones. Be wary of
overuse of steroids; medications for
thyroid problems; some drugs for
rheumatoid arthritis, as well as heart
and gastrointestinal diseases; and
antiseizure medications. Constant
dieting is also a concern because you
lose muscle and bone, not just fat.
High-protein diets, in particular,
can be a problem. “Avoid excessive
protein intake—more than 60 g a
day—since protein is acidic, and
calcium is diverted from the bones
to neutralize it,” Bilezikian warns.
Bone Boosters
Lifestyle changes are still your first
line of defense against osteoporosis:
Stop smoking, limit alcohol to one
drink daily, and exercise 20 minutes
or more three times a week (mix
strength training and weightbearing cardiovascular workouts,
such as bicycling or walking).
Here are more suggestions.
Enrich Your Meals
Everyone over 50 should get 1,200 mg
of calcium and 1,000 IU of vitamin D
daily. Such measures may slow bone
loss. Low-fat milk products, fortified
juice, and soy milk can add calcium
to your diet. Even someone who’s
lactose-intolerant can eat more tofu,
leafy greens, blackstrap molasses,
dried beans, and chickpeas. Sardines
are also packed with calcium.
Vitamin K and potassium are also
vital bone nutrients. Olive and canola
oils and leafy greens can bring you
K (you need 90 mcg a day), while
raisins, bananas, and potatoes have
potassium (aim for 4,700 mg per day).
Sip Smart
Caffeine and alcohol have both been
shown to limit calcium absorption
and increase osteoporosis risk. Stick
to one alcoholic beverage a day (two
for men) and curb your soda habit. If
you must have your morning cup of
coffee, drink it with milk; 1 teaspoon
per cup offsets the calcium loss.
Once-a-Year Bone Protection
Keeping weak bones healthy could
become very simple: Reclast, a
treatment for osteoporosis, requires
a 15-minute infusion just once a year.
Women who received it had a
70% lower risk of spinal fractures and
a 40% lower chance of hip fracture
than others who got a placebo, found
a 3-year international study of 7,736
women. That’s comparable to the
protection provided by current daily
pills. The drug binds to bone cells
and stays there, say the researchers,
slowing the natural breakdown of
skeletal tissue. Note: Do not use
Reclast if you have
a history of or risk
factors for kidney
60-second run in the
middle of your walk
should be enough
to signal bones to
add mass, he says.
The main point is to
Add Zip to
subject your bones
Your Walk
to more impact than
Walking is great
what they’re used to.
for your heart,
So if you’re inactive,
but it may not
start walking. And if
be enough to
you’re already walking,
strengthen your
add a 60-second jog.
bones and fend off
(Or start with 10
043920_jump_jacks_b.JPG 85%
seconds and increase.)
But you can
Hate running?
add 60 seconds
Then try jumping
of bone-building
jacks, tennis, swing
power to your
dance, step aerobics—
walk. When
anything that’s higher
various activities
impact than you’re
were tested for
used to and that varies
their ability to
your routine. Or give
stimulate bone
Milgrom’s idea of
growth, running
“zigzag walking” a
scored three
whirl: Mix in side-totimes higher
side strides, or take
than walking and
forward and suddenly backward steps.
other nonimpact exercises like stair
The surprise change in direction may
climbing and stationary cycling,
also help build stronger bones.
which had almost no effect.
You don’t have to abandon your
daily stroll for a strenuous jog or
See a Pro
resign yourself to weak bones, assures
Ask your doctor about what else you
Charles Milgrom, MD, study author
can do to keep your bones strong and
and member of the orthopedics
healthy. And, for more information,
department at the Hadassah
visit the National Osteoporosis
University Hospital in Jerusalem. A
Foundation (
Drug-Free C ures for Back Pain
Back pain affects up to an estimated
80% of all Americans at some time
or other. It’s typically due to strained
muscles—caused by strenuous lifting,
bending, or twisting when muscles
are tight. A sore back can also result
from inactivity, which allows your back
muscles to weaken and become stiff.
When back pain strikes, nonpre­
scription pain relievers can be very
effective. But some people can’t
tolerate their side effects, which can
include stomach upset. If your doctor
has told you that your backache isn’t
serious, you can safely try these easy,
natural techniques. Done regularly,
some can even help keep your back
from ever getting out of whack again.
Simple Stretches
for Back Pain
Stretching can relieve a sore back by
elongating muscle tissues, improving
blood flow, and speeding delivery of
oxygen and nutrients to the back. It
also helps decompress the vertebrae.
sit for a long time, the muscles in
the back of your legs contract. Then,
when you stand up, these muscles
resist returning to their normal
length and “yank” on the back of the
pelvis. As a result, your lower back
muscles also get pulled. Try this
exercise to feel better fast.
Lie on your back with your knees
bent, feet flat on the floor. Grasping
your hands around your right thigh,
gently pull one leg in toward your
chest, keeping your other leg slightly
bent. Go only as far as is comfortable.
Hold for 10 to 20 seconds and
release. Repeat with the other leg. If
your pain becomes worse, stop the
Once you can easily do the previous
exercise, try doing it with your
inactive leg straight, but not locked.
Hold a towel or rope around your leg
to gently pull it toward you. Go only
as far as is comfortable.
Acupressure Antidotes
ea_lybackstretch_a_f.JPG 37% FLOP
It sounds too good to be true: By
placing pressure on a certain point on
your body, you can make your back
pain subside or even disappear. That’s
a simple description of acupressure,
a traditional Chinese technique that
uses the same theory as acupuncture,
but without the needles, to release
painful blockages of energy in the body.
The Western explanation?
Acupressure may work by increasing
the production of endorphins,
hormonelike pain relievers the body
makes in response to injury. Many
massage therapists are trained
in acupressure; find one in your
area via, or call
the American Massage Therapy
Association toll-free at 877-905-0577.
Here are three ways to try
acupressure yourself. Press each
point with the tip of a mechanical
pencil or the tip of your index finger.
pencil tip or your fingertip between
your nose and upper lip. Apply deep
pressure, hold for several seconds,
and release. Repeat 5 to 10 times until
the pain begins to release.
Place the pencil tip or your fingertip
between your inner anklebone and
Achilles tendon, the large tendon
running from your heel bone to the
calf muscle. Apply deep pressure,
hold for several seconds, and release.
Repeat 5 to 10 times.
a fist. On the outside of your hand,
next to the pinkie finger, locate the
spot where the skin folds and bulges.
That’s your acupressure point.
Place the pencil tip or your fingertip
there, apply deep pressure, hold for
several seconds, and release. Repeat
5 to 10 times.
Herbal Alternatives
a backache during stressful periods.
It’s best to start using valerian root at
Herbs provide a natural alternative
the onset of the difficult time—before
to OTC pain relievers without the
the backache sets in.
undesirable side effects, says James
Look for valerian root capsules or
A. Duke, PhD, Prevention advisor and
tablets. Follow the instructions on
author of The Green Pharmacy. If
the product label, and use it for the
you know what’s causing your back
duration of the stressful period.
pain, try one of the following herbal
SOOTHING SALVE Ointment with
comfrey extract, which has antiMUSCLE RELAXATION TEA For back
inflammatory properties, helped ease
pain caused by strain and overuse
back pain in a study. After applying
of muscles, Duke recommends
it to sore spots for 5 days, 95% of
cramp bark (Viburnum opulus), a
subjects reported improvement,
muscle relaxant that soothes spasms.
compared with 38%
Add 1 teaspoon of the bark to
in the placebo group.
1 cup of boiling water.
Keep in mind: The
Steep 10 minutes.
herb has alkaloid
Strain and drink the
compounds that can
tea three times daily.
cause liver damage,
which is why
you should
pain caused
fdc922198.jpg 20%
not use it
by tension
orally. Limit
and stress
topical use to
can be eased
10 days or less, and
with valerian root
don’t apply to broken skin.
(Valeriana officinalis), which
blocks the transmission of stress from The study’s brand, Kytta-Salbe f, is
available at
the brain to the body. Some people get
Get a Leg Up
Three out of four people with chronic lower back pain may
have one leg that’s slightly shorter than the other. The easy-tomiss discrepancy: as little as one-fifth of an inch. Easy solution:
a shoe insert.
How to Make Sure You Never Have a Heart Attack
Heart disease is the biggest killer of
women. It kills more women than
breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and
cervical cancer combined. Even
worse, 64% of women who die
suddenly of heart attack or stroke
have no previous symptoms.
For decades, doctors could offer
nothing more sophisticated than a
stress test to predict heart risk. You’d
run on a treadmill while hooked up
to an EKG as he evaluated your heart
rate, breathing, and blood pressure
as the intensity of the workout
increased. When the stress test
was over he’d tell you whether you
have coronary artery disease. The
only catch: For women taking the
test, there’s a 35% chance the test
results are wrong. Most often, the
test reveals false positives, meaning
healthy women are told they have
heart disease. Less frequently, but
obviously far more dangerously, the
test can fail to detect clogged arteries
that could, in fact, cause a heart
attack. Fewer men are misdiagnosed.
Possible reason for the gender gap:
Phases of the menstrual cycle and
birth control pills have been shown
to throw off results, indicating that
estrogen’s effects on heart cells might
be a factor.
The Best Heart
Attack Predictor
“You don’t have to have a heart attack,”
insists preventive cardiologist and
Prevention advisory board member,
Arthur Agatston, MD. He developed
the widely known South Beach Diet
and has written The South Beach Heart
Program, a comprehensive guide to
avoiding heart attacks.
In addition, Agatston and Warren
Janowitz, MD, developed the first
CT scan heart screening—the
cardiac calcium scoring test (see
“Cardiac Calcium Scoring,” below).
Agatston argues that by combining
this screening test with other
sophisticated new ones, Americans
can identify their heart risk years
or decades earlier—and with more
precision—than ever before. The
scan distinguishes between hard
plaque, the calcified patches where
Cardiac Calcium Scoring
Here’s what to expect if you have
the CT scan heart screening.
How it works A CT scanner checks
for atherosclerotic plaque (made
up of calcium, cholesterol, and scar
tissue) in your heart’s arteries.
After electrodes are attached to
your chest and to an EKG machine
that monitors your heartbeat, you
lie on an exam table that slides
into a short, doughnut-shaped
tunnel and hold your breath for 10
to 20 seconds. Cost: $99 to $399.
Duration: 10 minutes.
Why it’s heart smart Calcified
plaque—a major warning sign
of coronary artery disease, the
leading cause of heart attacks—
shows up at least 10 years before
a heart attack or stroke hits. By
catching the problem early, you
can treat it before the buildup
narrows arteries so severely that it
triggers a heart attack.
Get it if You’re 50 or older with risk
factors—or you’re younger with a
family history and several risk factors.
Since the test involves X rays, women
shouldn’t have it if there’s any chance
they might be pregnant.
What the results mean You’ll get an
Agatston Score, which indicates the
total amount of hard and soft plaque
in your heart’s arteries. A score of
zero means you have no calcium
deposits and a low risk of heart attack
in the next 5 years. A score of 400 or
more puts you at high risk of a heart
attack within 10 years; a score of
1,000+ means you have up to a 25%
chance of having a heart attack within
a year without medical treatment.
Next steps If your score is 200 or
higher, your doctor may advise lifestyle
changes, a statin to lower cholesterol,
or a diabetes drug to lower blood
sugar—all of which will also reduce
cholesterol lining the arteries have ruptured and
healed over, and more dangerous soft plaque, the
source of new, potentially lethal ruptures. “Calcium
scoring is the number one best predictor of a future
heart attack,” says Agatston. “I call this test a
mammogram for the heart.”
More Cutting-Edge Tests
In addition to the cardiac calcium scoring test,
Agatston recommends the following.
“These tests are the best ways to tell who is in
danger, because they can catch cardiovascular
disease 20 to 30 years before it gets severe enough
to cause a heart attack or stroke. At our clinic, and
at other top heart clinics across the country, our
patients almost never have heart attacks,” says
Agatston. “We only see one or two a year—and
those are primarily in patients who don’t take
their meds.”
These tests are available at most major medical
centers and hospitals. If your doctor doesn’t
request them for you, demand the ones that are
recommended for women in your age group and
risk category.
15-minute “ultrasound of the neck” measures the
thickness of the carotid arteries’ lining. Get it if
you’re 40 or older—or you’re under 40 and have a
close relative (parent or sibling) who had a heart
attack or stroke before age 55.
test measures CRP, a protein in your blood that’s a
strong indicator of inflammation throughout your
body. Get it if you’re 40 or older.
Walnuts to Wipe
Away LDL
Nuts give sweet
or savory dishes
flavor, crunch, and a
heart-healthy punch.
And walnuts score
highest of all nuts
in the omega-3s
that protect against
heart disease.
You only have to
eat three whole
walnuts to get
your daily goal for
omega-3 fats. And
their stores of fiber
and unsaturated
fat can help you
lower “bad” LDL
cholesterol naturally.
To preserve taste
and prevent spoiling,
keep shelled nuts
refrigerated in an
airtight container for
up to 6 months or in
the freezer for up to
a year.
TEST The advanced cholesterol blood test looks
at particle size (small particles raise
risk). The Lp(a) blood test analyzes a
specific type of cholesterol that can
triple heart risk. Get it if you have a
family history of heart disease.
test indicates your average level of
blood sugar over the prior 3 months,
a simple way to predict your future
risk of diabetes. Get it if you’re 45 or
older—or earlier if you’re overweight
and have one or more diabetes risk
factors, such as family history, high
triglycerides, or low HDL.
GENETIC TESTS A blood sample is
tested at a lab for mutations of the
KIF6 and APOE genes to determine
your genetic heart disease risk. Get
them if you’re 40 or older.
test is an improvement over the
standard stress test because it adds
an ultrasound both before and after
exercise to evaluate blood flow to your
heart’s pumping chambers and check
for blockages in the arteries that
supply the heart. Get it if you have
signs of heart disease, regardless of
your age. “If you experience shortness
of breath, chest pain, neck pain, or any
other symptom, you need this test,”
says Agatston. (See “7 Symptoms
Women Ignore,” p. 61.)
Your Best Heart Attack Prevention Plan
Agatston stresses lifestyle changes to all his patients, beginning with
exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy weight. Although he
developed the South Beach Diet—a meal plan that is rich in heart-healthy
foods—to help his patients slim down and control cholesterol, he’s open to
any weight loss plan so long as it follows these principles:
1. Load up on good carbs (whole grains and a variety of fruits and
vegetables) instead of bad carbs (white bread, pretzels, cakes, and other
highly processed foods that have been stripped of fiber and nutrients).
2. Eat primarily unsaturated fats, low-fat dairy, and lean sources of protein.
3. Get an even bigger heart boost by eating at least two weekly servings of
fatty fish like tuna, salmon, or mackerel.
4. Add these especially heart-healthy foods: apples, oat bran, legumes,
and, in moderation, red wine, nuts, and monounsaturated fats, such as
olive and canola oils.
7 Symptoms Women Ignore
Heart attack symptoms aren’t
unisex. Marianne Legato, MD,
director of the Partnership for
Gender-Specific Medicine at
Columbia University. In fact, 43% of
women having a heart attack don’t
experience chest discomfort at all.
Women also wait longer to go
to the ER than men do. (Their top
fhe032.jpg 14%
reason for hesitating: They don’t
want to bother anyone.) But that
can be fatal: Your odds of surviving
improve by 23% if you get treatment within 3 hours and 50% within 1 hour.
If you have any of these warning signs, act fast. As Legato says: “It’s
better to be embarrassed than dead.”
Fatigue In the weeks before an attack, 71% of women have flulike
symptoms. Days before, you may feel too tired to lift your laptop.
Non-chest pain Rather than an explosion in your chest, you may feel lesssevere pain in your upper back, shoulders, neck, or jaw.
Sweating You may find yourself suddenly drenched in perspiration for no
apparent reason, and your face may be pale or ashen.
Nausea or dizziness During an attack, women often vomit or feel like
they’re going to pass out.
Breathlessness Almost 58% of women report panting or inability to carry
on a conversation.
Sleeplessness In the month before a coronary, nearly half of women have
trouble sleeping.
Anxiety “Many women experience a sense of impending doom or fear
before a heart attack,” says Legato. “That’s your body telling you to pay
attention. Trust those instincts.” for Agatston’s latest advice
Report 11
Dance Off
Dance is hot!
More than
24 million people tune
in weekly to shows
like Dancing with the
Stars. Zumba, a Latininspired dance workout,
attracts 10 million–plus
participants weekly.
Congress has even gotten
into the act, officially
recognizing July 31 as
National Dance Day.
All the attention isn’t
surprising when you
consider that a good
beat can get just about
everyone tapping their
feet or swinging their
hips. Moving to the
music subtracts stress
and adds joy. You’re
not counting reps or
watching the clock.
You’re out meeting people;
it’s entertainment.
But dance is also a total-body
workout that has all the benefits
of a long run or a session on the
elliptical—and then some. In a 1-hour
You’ve seen what dance can
do—some DWTS contestants have
lost more than 40 pounds, all while
having a great time. You can do it too,
even if you have two left feet or achy
joints. Most adult beginner classes
are gentler than ones for traditional
types of exercise. You just need to
find the right dance style for you, says
Deborah Vogel, dancer and director
of the dance education website Here, our guide to
help you shimmy into your best body
ever. No matter which style of these
dances you choose, you’ll get a totalbody workout.
Learning curve*
★★★ ★★
TARGETED MUSCLES: Front and side abs and back
PV-0411-DANC05_01.tif 34%
class, you can burn as many as
400 calories. Do that three times
a week and you could drop nearly
20 pounds in a year without dieting.
You’ll also tone nearly every muscle
in your body, improve balance, and
boost brainpower.
The dance at a glance Quick, sharp
steps, lots of hip action, and a fiery
attitude set Latin dances like salsa,
merengue, and cha-cha apart from
the rest. Most require a partner, but
there are solo options like Zumba.
Why it’s healthy Abs—from
transverse to obliques—and the
muscles that support your spine
get a 360-degree workout from
the twisting, pulling, and constant
back-and-forth movement. A stronger
core improves posture and helps
prevent lower-back pain.
You’ll love it if You have a sexy
wiggle in your walk and aren’t afraid
to use it. Latin dances are set to a fast
beat (160 to 210 beats per minute),
ensuring a higher-than-average
calorie burn and plenty of body heat
between partners.
PV-0411-DANC03_01.tif 24%
Do-at-home DVD Partner Dancing 101:
The Latin Dances ( or, for
solo dancing, Dance Off the Inches:
Sizzling Salsa (
*The level of difficulty is based on a scale of 1 to 5 stars, with 1 equivalent to slow dancing at the high school prom
and 5 a Cirque du Soleil routine.
Masala Bhangra
Learning curve
★★ ★★★
TARGETED MUSCLES: Front and back of upper arms and shoulders; upper back
PV-0411-DANC04_01.tif 23%
The dance at a glance The Masala
Bhangra is India’s Electric Slide—it’s
the dance American audiences loved
in Slumdog Millionaire. But no need
to don a sari to partake. In Masala
Bhangra, your arms do a lot of the
dancing—one move has your arms in
a U shape while you turn your wrists
as though you’re screwing in two
lightbulbs—making it ideal for any
level of exerciser.
Why it’s healthy All the upperbody action shapes sexy shoulders,
arms, and back. It also strengthens
the small, easily injured rotator cuff
muscles in your shoulders. Note: All
the overhead action raises your heart
rate. If it feels too intense or your
arms ache, simply lower your hands
below your heart while still dancing.
You’ll love it if Your tastes run to
the exotic and you love to swing your
hips. Because the style isn’t as rigid
as other types of dance, it’s a lowpressure workout to try solo or with
Do-at-home DVD Bollywood Dance
Blast (
Plain Old Fun = Better Health
A study shows that people who relax with family and friends, make time
for vacations, and play sports—they schedule pleasure into their busy
calendars—have lower blood pressure and levels of damaging cortisol,
lower BMIs, and smaller waists. “When it comes to health, pleasure can
be protective,” says George B. Stefano, PhD, director of the Neuroscience
Research Institute at the State University of New York.
TARGETED MUSCLES: Front of thighs
The dance at a glance If Latin is
hot, then jazz is cool. Moves are a
blend of sharp kicks and sultry slides,
all performed with a “look at me now”
attitude—think Catherine Zeta-Jones
in Chicago. The goal is to create a
striking silhouette.
Why it’s healthy The fat-blasting
combo of cardio, strength, and power
moves boosts your metabolism
for faster weight loss. It improves
agility and gait for better balance,
TARGETED MUSCLES: Calves and shins
The dance at a glance In tap, you
wear shoes that have metal plates
attached to the heel and forefoot;
these make a percussive sound when
you rhythmically touch or stomp
on the floor. Compared with other
dance styles, there’s less coordination
between your arms and legs and only
a little hip action, so tap dancing is
actually easier than it looks.
Why it’s healthy Even in a
beginner’s class, you’ll be doing
enough small hops and jumps to
strengthen bones. And, according
to a study in the Journal of Dance
Medicine & Science, tap dancing has
Learning curve
★★★ ★★
studies show. And all the bending and
rotating of your torso helps tone your
You’ll love it if You’re a
Broadway-musical fan and have a
big personality. Form is important,
but so is self-expression. Classes are
typically high-energy affairs involving
large, dynamic moves that use the
entire body.
Do-at-home DVD Musical Theatre
Dance (
Learning curve
★ ★★★★
less impact than running, making
it a joint-friendly activity. Tap also
increases the foot’s range of motion
and strengthens fast-twitch muscles
(the ones required for explosive
actions such as jumping). Off the
dance floor, these improvements
help you to be surer on your feet and
protect you from injuries like ankle
You’ll love it if You’re the fingersnapping, rhythm-keeping type. And
being clumsy’s okay because the style
hides a lack of grace.
Do-at-home DVD Tap Dance Made
Easy, Vol. 1 (
Report 12
The dance at a
glance While ballet
is so graceful and fluid
it appears almost
effortless, it actually
requires tremendous
power and control.
Though it doesn’t have
to entirely consume
you as it did Nina in
Black Swan, ballet does
demand a good deal of
Learning curve
★★★★ ★
that ballet dancers
outscored swimmers
on 7 out of 10 fitness
tests, including
You’ll love it if
You dressed up in
tutus as a child or
PV-0411-DANC07_03.tif 18%
prefer methodical
exercise, such
as Pilates. Ballet
requires more
discipline than any
other dance, and the
Why it’s healthy
steps call for total-body precision,
Ballet increases flexibility from
including how you position your
head to toe more than other dance
fingers, toes, and head. If you like
styles. And the focus on posture will
rules, then this style is for you.
have you standing taller and moving
more gracefully even off the dance
Do-at-home DVD New York City Ballet
floor. A study from England showed
Workouts (
Dance with Your Star
Take some lessons with your spouse. Dancing combines physical
exercise, social interaction, and the mental challenge of following new
steps, according to a McGill University study of seniors who improved
cognitive function by learning the tango.
Enlist your couple friends to join. Having them involved will add to
the fun and enhance your commitment to learning the steps.
Calories. You count them. You save
them. You burn as many of them as
you can. But is your strategy working?
If you’re like 67% of women who are
constantly (and not so successfully)
trying to lose weight and keep it off,
the answer is no. The reason: What
you think you know about calories is
simply not true.
Ever since you learned what a
calorie is, you’ve been told that
they are all alike: Whether you eat
500 calories’ worth of celery stalks
or crème brûlée, your body will burn
or store them equally. Right? Wrong.
New science shows that when it
comes to weight loss, calories are
nowhere near alike.
Some foods take more work to
eat—and therefore burn more calories
while you’re digesting them. Just
the act of chewing foods like fruits,
vegetables, whole grains, and lean
cuts of meat can increase your calorie
burn by up to 30%! And then your
stomach and intestines do their jobs.
In a Japanese study, researchers
found that women who ate the foods
that required the most work to digest
had significantly slimmer waistlines
than those who ate the softest,
easiest-to-eat foods. The fiber and
protein in such foods take so much
effort to digest that your body
doesn’t absorb some of their calories.
Still other calories from sources
you might never consider—that
are so easy to add to your meals!—
can give you an even bigger burn.
Caffeine and other compounds in
coffee, tea, and spices such as chiles,
cinnamon, and ginger fire up your
central nervous system and can
boost your metabolism by as much
as 12%.
Put these foods and drinks
together and you get the Active
Calorie Diet—a smart plan that takes
Excerpted and adapted from The Active Calorie Diet by Leslie Bonci, RD, with Selene Yeager and the editors of Prevention,
© 2011 by Rodale Inc. For the complete program, visit to purchase the book.
In addition to
advantage of
043855_kidsplatethis3 1.JPG 44.5%
being chewy,
all the new
these Active
Calories are
about calories.
packed with
By choosing
fiber, take up more
more Active
room in your belly
Calories and fewer
(compared with other
Couch Potato Calories
foods of the same number
(see p. 69), you’ll set your
of calories), and leave less room for
fat-burning engines on high all day
second helpings.
long so you’ll lose more weight—
without feeling hungry. When 15
ENERGIZING FOODS (coffee, black and
women tried the diet, they lost up
green tea, dark chocolate). You can
to 14 pounds and 4 inches off their
get metabolism-boosting caffeine in
waistlines in just 4 weeks!
coffee and black tea; just be careful
not to load them up with milk, cream,
or sugar. Green tea doesn’t have much
Fire Up Your Meals
caffeine but does contain catechins,
an antioxidant that raises resting
Eating requires lots of energy if you
metabolism by 4% (about 80 calories
choose the right foods. By choosing
a day). Dark chocolate contains both
foods that actually burn calories
catechins and caffeine, but stick to
while you chew, you can blast off
1 ounce per day to limit fat and calories.
belly fat, curb your appetite, and
drop 2 sizes fast.
WARMING FOODS (peppers, cinnamon,
These four types of Active Calories
ginger, garlic, cloves, mustard,
stimulate your body to burn more
vinegar). Dieters taking capsaicin,
calories. (Bonus: They also curb your
the chemical that gives peppers
their burn, doubled their energy
expenditure for several hours after
CHEWY FOODS (lean meats, nuts,
eating, according to a new study from
whole fruits and vegetables). These
calories make your body work right off UCLA. Even mild peppers contain
the fork. To maximize the chew factor, compounds that help erase up to 100
calories a day by binding to nerve
choose food in its most whole state—a
receptors and sending fat-burning
tuna steak instead of canned tuna,
signals to your brain. Not much of a
apples instead of applesauce.
pepper person? Cinnamon, cloves,
HEARTY FOODS (fruits, vegetables,
bay leaves, and garlic help, too.
brown rice, whole grains and cereals).
Couch Potato Calories
These foods are so easily digested that you’re likely to absorb every calorie and
store it as fat. The result: Even if you don’t overeat, you may still gain weight.
The Pantry Stuffers
The Impostors
The Binge Brigade
Refined and sugary
foods take zero
energy to digest.
Check packaged
foods for added sugar
that goes by other
names, most ending
with -ose, such as
fructose, maltose, and
sucrose. Also watch
out for corn syrup,
molasses, honey, and
juice concentrate.
Beware of processed
foods that are
advertised as the
real thing but are
anything but. There’s
really no meat or
substance left, and
they’re fattened up
with fillers.
Once you start,
you just can’t
stop eating these
starchy, high-carb
chicken patties
• Pasta
• White rice
• Refined bread
• Muffins
• Bagels
• French fries
urgers that
aren’t 100% beef
or turkey
• Biscuits
• Doughnuts
• Soda
eggie burgers
(okay on occasion,
but don’t make
them a frequent
• Sweet tea
• Bologna
• Candy bars
and candy
• Fruit punch
or fruit juice
• Sweetened
• Potato chips
• Cookies, pie,
• Ice cream
• Salami
• Hot dogs
6 oz Greek yogurt with
¼ c almonds, ½ c berries,
⅓ c high-fiber cereal,
¾ c fat-free milk; coffee or tea
Tuna sandwich: 3 oz can of tuna,
½ c cannellini beans, and 1 tbsp
feta cheese on sm whole wheat
pita with 2 Tbsp bottled vinaigrette;
½ c grape tomatoes; 1 orange
¼ c wasabi-roasted soybeans
with popcorn (100-calorie serving)
Orange-Sesame Chicken
(see recipe, p. 77)
1 hard-boiled egg, 1 apple with 1 Tbsp
peanut butter, ¾ c high-fiber cereal (at
least 5 g fiber), ¾ c fat-free milk; coffee
or tea
Tropical salad: 2 c spinach,
½ c cut-up mango, 3 oz cooked
chicken, 2 Tbsp nuts (any kind)
with 1 Tbsp balsamic vinaigrette;
10–15 whole grain crackers
4 oz vanilla Greek yogurt,
blueberry Soyjoy bar
Bean burrito: 1 c vegetarian refried
beans or black beans, ¼ c shredded
reduced-fat Cheddar, and 1 c lettuce
on corn tortilla, topped with ¼ c salsa
½ c oatmeal (made with ½ c 1% milk and
cinnamon to taste), ¾ c cottage cheese
with 3 Tbsp almonds, 1 banana; coffee
or tea
Healthy Choice, Weight Watchers,
or Lean Cuisine meal; 4 oz Greek
yogurt with cinnamon; 6–7 baby
carrots; 1 apple
4 oz Greek yogurt with honey
(mixed with a splash of lemon
juice and vanilla, if desired),
2 Tbsp slivered almonds
4 oz cooked-weight steak,
2 c broccoli (sautéed with garlic),
1 sweet potato with 2 tsp butter;
green tea
Breakfast burrito: 2 scrambled eggs;
¼ c shredded reduced-fat Cheddar;
½ sm green bell pepper, chopped;
and ¼ c salsa wrapped in 6" high-fiber
tortilla; 1 orange; coffee or tea
Black Bean Burger
(see recipe, p. 78)
2 mini Babybel cheeses,
1 med apple
4 oz cooked-weight fish (any kind),
½ c fire-roasted tomatoes and
1½ c green beans sautéed with
2 tsp olive oil and hot pepper to taste,
½ c brown rice; green tea
Your 5-Day Meal Plan
2 frozen whole wheat waffles
topped with ½ c part-skim ricotta and
1 Tbsp fruit spread, mixed; ½ c berries;
1 Tbsp slivered almonds; and
sprinkling of cinnamon; coffee or tea
Fast-food meal:
Sm Wendy’s chili and ½ Wendy’s
baked potato, plain
¼ c mini bocconcini
(fresh mozzarella balls) and
½ c grape tomatoes topped
with balsamic vinegar to taste
Shrimp Scampi Linguine
(see recipe, p. 75)
Power Up Your Plate
Despite all the talk about calories, you won’t be counting them on
this diet plan.
You should consume all four types of Active Calories each day. You’ll
eat mostly Chewy and Hearty foods, plus at least one Energizing
or Warming food. You can have a daily snack that contains at least
one type of Active Calorie food. Healthy fats such as nut butters,
avocados, and salad dressings can also help boost fat burn; just
limit them to 1 tablespoon for nut butters and salad dressings and
⅟₈ of an avocado. And drink two glasses of water with every meal to
prevent digestive problems from all the protein and fiber.
Your 5-Day Meal Plan is on p. 70. Remember, the more Active
Calories you include in your diet, the more calories you’ll burn and
weight you’ll lose.
Protein (¼ of your plate, as shown here) boosts postmeal calorie
burn by 25 to 30% and keeps you satisfied longer than carbs or
fat. The result: You can lose nearly a pound a week without doing
anything else.
Fruits and vegetables (½ of plate) up your calorie burn by 20%.
They’re also lower in calories and higher in fiber than other carbs,
so they digest more slowly to keep you full longer. Vegetables are
so rich in Active Calories that you can eat as many as you want.
Foods high in fiber (¼ of plate)—whole grains, legumes, and starches
such as potatoes and corn—fill you up faster and give you a bigger
bump in calorie burn (10%) than refined carbs, like white bread.
5 Active
PV-0311-FOOD08_01.tif 38%
Fuel your
metabolism with
the right foods,
and you’ll zoom
down the road
to lasting weight
loss. There’s
an abundance
of these
contain Active
Calories—in the
following recipes.
You’ll enjoy
making these
meals—and your
family will love
eating them.
Recipes adapted from The Active Calorie Diet by Leslie Bonci, RD, with
Selene Yeager and the editors of Prevention © 2011 Rodale Inc.
Steak Sandwich with Peppers & Onions
Shrimp Scampi Linguine
Slicing your own beef (instead of using fat-riddled frozen shaved steaks), bulking up
your sandwich with vegetables, and putting it all on a hefty whole wheat roll will give
you more to chew on and boost your calorie burn.
You need minimal ingredients and time to make this hearty homemade meal with fatburning impact. High-protein shrimp cook quickly, and whole wheat linguine supplies
60% more fiber than regular pasta. Garlic and red-pepper flakes add heat and rev your
½lb flank steak, thinly
2Tbsp chopped
cilantro leaves
2 cloves garlic, minced
1red onion, thinly
1green bell pepper,
thinly sliced
1poblano or Cubanelle
pepper, thinly sliced
¼ tsp salt
4sm whole wheat
submarine rolls
4slices reduced-fat
provolone or Swiss
HEAT oven to 350°F.
Combine steak, cilantro,
and garlic in medium
bowl and toss to coat.
HEAT large frying pan
coated with cooking
PV-0311-FOOD01_01.tif 22%
spray over medium-high
heat. Add steak and
cook, turning twice,
until edges are lightly
browned but center is
still pink, 3 to 4 minutes.
Transfer to a plate.
COAT same skillet
with cooking spray
and add onion, bell
pepper, chile pepper,
and salt. Reduce heat
to medium and cook,
stirring occasionally,
until peppers are soft,
7 to 8 minutes.
PUT rolls on baking
sheet and lay 1 cheese
slice on each. Warm in
oven until cheese melts,
about 5 minutes.
5 ADD steak and onionpepper mixture to rolls
and serve immediately.
NUTRITION (per serving)
367 cal, 25 g pro, 40 g carb,
6 g fiber, 12.5 g fat, 5.5 g sat
fat, 735 mg sodium
9oz whole wheat
1Tbsp extra virgin
olive oil
1lb medium shrimp,
4 cloves garlic, minced
½tsp red-pepper
1pt cherry tomatoes,
½ c dry white wine
Juice of 1 lemon
½ tsp salt
3c packed baby
spinach leaves
¼c finely chopped
½ c grated Parmesan
PREPARE pasta per
package directions.
HEAT oil in large frying
pan over medium heat
while pasta cooks. Add
shrimp, garlic, and redpepper flakes and cook
until shrimp start to turn
PV-0311-FOOD04_01.tif 24%
pink, about 2 minutes.
ADD tomatoes, wine,
lemon juice, and salt.
Cook until tomatoes
start to soften, about
1 minute. Add spinach
and parsley and cook
until spinach wilts,
about 1 minute.
DRAIN pasta and add
to pan. Toss to coat and
serve sprinkled with
NUTRITION (per serving)
483 cal, 38 g pro, 50 g carb,
11 g fiber, 12.5 g fat, 3 g sat
fat, 665 mg sodium
Honey-Glazed Pork with Garlic Mashed
Potatoes & Roasted Broccoli
Choose comfort food wisely and the calories will work for you! Pork requires more energy
to chew and digest than a ground-meat dish, such as meat loaf. Potatoes supply resistant
starch, which helps you feel satisfied. Cook your broccoli until it’s just tender to preserve
as much bite as possible.
½ c apple juice
2 Tbsp honey
1Tbsp reduced-sodium
soy sauce
4 cloves garlic, minced
1½lb pork tenderloin,
¼ tsp cayenne
4 c broccoli florets
2 Tbsp olive oil
½ tsp salt
1½lb Yukon gold
½c reduced-fat sour
¼ c chopped parsley
HEAT oven to 400°F.
Combine apple juice,
honey, soy sauce, and
half of the garlic in small
bowl. Sprinkle pork with
TOSS broccoli with
1 tablespoon of the oil
on baking sheet. Sprinkle
with ¼ teaspoon of the
HEAT remaining
1 tablespoon oil in
medium ovenproof frying
pan over high heat. Add
pork and cook, turning
once, until browned,
about 8 minutes. Remove
from heat. Pour juice
mixture over pork and
transfer to oven along
with the pan of broccoli.
Bake until pork and
broccoli are done,
25 to 30 minutes.
PUT potatoes in
medium pot while pork
and broccoli cook and
cover with cold water.
Bring to a boil over high
heat and cook until
tender, 20 to 25 minutes.
5 LEAVE broccoli on
baking sheet and
transfer pork to cutting
board. Return frying pan
to high heat and cook
juice mixture until a
thick glaze forms,
3 to 4 minutes.
Remove from heat.
6 DRAIN potatoes
and return to pot. Add
sour cream, parsley,
remaining ¼ teaspoon
salt, and remaining
garlic. Mash until
7 SLICE pork and put on
plate. Drizzle with glaze
and serve with mashed
potatoes and broccoli.
NUTRITION (per serving)
481 cal, 42 g pro, 46 g carb,
7 g fiber, 15 g fat, 4.5 g sat
fat, 560 mg sodium
Orange-Sesame Chicken
This simple stir-fry fills you up with nutty brown rice and crunchy vegetables, which are
made delicious with flavor-enhancing, fat-fighting ingredients, such as vinegar, ginger,
and red-pepper flakes.
⅔c short-grain
brown rice
¾ c orange juice
¼ c cider vinegar
2Tbsp reduced-sodium
soy sauce
1 Tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp cornstarch
2 Tbsp sesame oil
1½lb boneless, skinless
chicken breasts,
thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1Tbsp minced fresh
1tsp red-pepper
4ribs celery, thinly
4 carrots, thinly sliced
2c frozen peas,
2Tbsp toasted
sesame seeds
PREPARE rice per
package directions.
COMBINE orange juice,
vinegar, soy sauce, sugar,
and cornstarch
in small bowl
while rice
cooks and
whisk until
1 tablespoon
of the oil in
large frying
pan over
heat. Add
chicken, garlic,
ginger, and
flakes. Cook
until chicken begins to
brown, 4 to 5 minutes.
Transfer to plate.
ADD celery,
carrots, and remaining
1 tablespoon oil. Cook
until celery begins to
soften, 2 to 3 minutes.
5 RETURN chicken to pan
and add peas. Reduce
heat to low and add
juice mixture. Cook
PV-0311-FOOD09_02.tif 36%
Angle -10 degrees
2 to 3 minutes longer,
scraping up any
browned bits on bottom
of pan. Sprinkle with
sesame seeds and
serve immediately
with the rice.
NUTRITION (per serving)
532 cal, 45 g pro, 53 g carb,
8 g fiber, 14.5 g fat, 2 g sat
fat, 625 mg sodium
Black Bean Burger
Satisfy your burger craving with this tasty meatless meal that supplies nearly half of
your daily fiber needs. Adding jalapeño chile peppers, onion, and garlic to the mix stokes
your calorie-burning engine.
6oz mushrooms,
½ red onion, quartered
½c packed cilantro
6Tbsp whole wheat
bread crumbs
2 cloves garlic
1jalapeño chile
pepper, seeded
1 egg white
2tsp reduced-sodium
soy sauce
1can (15 oz) no-saltadded black beans,
rinsed and drained
1 Tbsp canola oil
4slices reduced-fat
pepper Jack
4sm whole wheat
sandwich rolls,
4 lettuce leaves
1 sm tomato, sliced
COMBINE mushrooms,
onion, cilantro, bread
crumbs, garlic, chile
pepper, egg white,
More Ways to Eat Yourself Thin
Here are some quick and easy switches to include more Active
Calories (see p. 68) in your diet.
Oatmeal with sugar
Oatmeal with cinnamon
A burger with french fries
Flank steak with baked potato
Turkey on wheat with mayo
Turkey on rye with salsa
Overripe banana
Slightly green banana
Sweet-and-sour chicken
with white rice
Chicken and broccoli
with brown rice
Chicken nuggets
Grilled chicken breast sandwich
Macaroni salad
Black bean or 3-bean salad
Buttermilk waffles/pancakes
Buckwheat waffles/
pancakes with pears
Bagel with cream cheese
2 scrambled eggs
Diet soda
Red wine
PV-0311-FOOD10_01.tif 26%
and soy sauce in food
processor. Process until
finely chopped. Add
beans and pulse until
coarsely chopped
(10 to 15 pulses). Divide
mixture into quarters
and form into patties.
HEAT oil in large frying
pan over medium heat.
Brown burgers 3 minutes
per side.
TOP each burger with
a slice of cheese. Cover
pan and melt cheese,
about 4 minutes.
PUT burgers on rolls
and top with lettuce and
tomato. to learn how to burn more calories at every meal
NUTRITION (per serving)
406 cal, 21 g pro, 56 g carb,
11 g fiber, 13 g fat, 4.5 g sat
fat, 680 mg sodium
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