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4 Dynamic Stretches Offer First Aid for Morning Pain and Stiffness

By Dr. Tom Kleeman, an orthopedic surgeon and creator of MDFitness: The Doctors Workout, a 3-DVD workout available at TheDoctorsWorkout.com.

Your alarm goes off. You pry your eyes open, swing your legs over the side of the bed, and take those first morning steps. That’s when the real alarms go off. Your back and joints cry out in anguish. For a moment you are frozen like the rusty Tin Man wondering how to lubricate all of those joints. You remember reading somewhere that it was important to stretch in the morning, but what does that mean exactly?

For years static stretching has been the mainstay of the early morning routine. As it turns out, research doesn’t support a benefit from static stretching. Dynamic stretching, on the other hand, has been shown to have many benefits including warming up your muscles, increasing blood flow, and jump-starting your metabolism. The idea is to obtain the most benefit in the least time using compound exercises that work multiple joints or muscle groups at the same time. Check out these four dynamic stretches and see for yourself. It’s like having a can of lubricating oil at your bedside.

High March with Arm Swings

high knee mdfitness
This is a great beginning move. It’s easy on your joints while warming up both the upper and lower body. Start by marching in place bringing your knees up higher as your hips warm up. At the same time, stretch your arms out to the side and bring them forward wrapping them around your chest then back out in the tempo of the march. Keep going for about 30 seconds. This exercise gets your hips, shoulders, and chest warmed up and limber.
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Shame on Social Media for Shaming Our Bodies: Instagram and Facebook Censorship Goes too Far

If you want to post a picture of yourself — or someone else — on Facebook or Instagram, you better first make sure you’re not too fat, thin, sexy, or maternal. You can wear a bikini in your photo, but only if you look like a celebrity, or actually are one. Definitely don’t post a picture of yourself breastfeeding unless you’re famous. You also can’t post pictures that show your breasts, no matter the circumstances. Unless they’re covered by an itsy-bitsy, teeny-weenie bikini of the color of your choice.

censorship

Got all that? Don’t worry, we don’t either. That’s because none of those “rules” are mentioned even remotely in the Terms of Service of Instagram or Facebook.

From Instagram’s Terms of Service:
“You may not post violent, nude, partially nude, discriminatory, unlawful, infringing, hateful, pornographic or sexually suggestive photos or other content via the Service [Instagram].”

From Facebook’s Terms of Service:
“Facebook has a strict policy against the sharing of pornographic content and any explicit sexual content where a minor is involved. We also impose limitations on the display of nudity. We aspire to respect people’s right to share content of personal importance, whether those are photos of a sculpture like Michelangelo’s David or family photos of a child breastfeeding.”

Why then, do you think so many women are complaining of their photos or accounts being deleted for posting photos that comply with the rules, or at least comply with them as much as anyone else’s? Here are some of the most recent examples of ridiculous body-shaming by social media sites.

banned selfie

Nineteen-year-old Samm Newman’s Instagram account was deleted after she posted this near full-body selfie. Shortly after the photo was posted, Instagram suspended her account. While Newman is wearing only bra and underwear, she’s hardly posing provocatively or suggestively.

Newman told her local news stations that she felt there was a double standard on Instagram since her account was deleted while other, thinner girls could post even racier photos without consequence.
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Miss Idaho Wants You to #ShowMeYourPump

Forget what you think you know about beauty pageant contestants. The courageous, strong, talented and yes, beautiful women who compete for the crown are so much more than pretty faces who can rock and evening gown. The newly crowned Miss Idaho, Sierra Sandison, for example, made waves by wearing her insulin pump on her bikini during the swimsuit competition.

Miss Idaho

The idea to proudly display her pump, instead of finding some way to conceal it, came from a pre-competition lunch. While the competition director was asking about Sandison’s community service platform, the topic of Sandison’s diabetes came up.

“Since we were at lunch, I had to give myself a shot, and when she saw the shot, the director said, ‘Oh my goodness you’re a diabetic.’ Then proceeded to tell me about Nicole Johnson, who was Miss America in 1999. She actually wore her insulin pump on stage,” Sandison told E! News. “That gave me the confidence to get one, when I first heard about Nicole.”


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Little Blue Dynamos: My Love Affair with Blueberries Made a Blueberry Cucumber Salad

blueberries

It’s my favorite time of year: peak blueberry season! If you’re anything like me, you can’t get enough of these little balls of deliciousness. Farmers markets, U-Pick berry fields, or from the local produce store, I can’t gobble them up fast enough.

Peak season is anytime from late June through early September, so I’m even known to buy extra large amounts in bulk and freeze* for the rest of the year. Then I add them to smoothies, pancakes (my favorite recipe is this one), oatmeal, you name it! I even found a way to add these little guys to a savory salad. Don’t believe me? We’ll let you try the recipe for yourself!

blueberry cucumber salad

Why the love affair with blueberries? These little blue dynamos…
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6 Slim Summer Sips That Skip the Hips

drinks

By Team Best Life

Craving a nice cold beverage to quench your thirst and beat the heat? Be careful what you reach for—some beverages can pack a pretty big caloric punch. In fact, some drinks can end up costing you more than a meal!

Take a look below to figure out how many calories some of your favorite drinks will set you back. All calorie information is based on an eight-ounce serving, unless noted.

Lemonade (powder mixed with water) – 40 calories

Sports Drink – 60-80 calories

Soda – 65-95 calories

Iced Tea – 90 calories

Light Beer – 100 calories per 12 ounces

Regular Beer – 150 calories per 12 ounces

Frozen Margarita – 226 calories per 10 ounces

Strawberry Daquiri/Pina Colada – 250 calories for 4.5 ounces

See the Calories in 4 More Popular Summer Cocktails

Of course, calories shouldn’t be the only thing you pay attention to. You should be on the lookout for artificial sweeteners, which are used to sweeten a beverage without adding any (or many) calories. These can be problematic because they may increase your cravings for sweet foods and interfere with your ability to appreciate naturally sweet foods.
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