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WHY, HOW SITTING MAY KILL YOU

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Most of us sit for hours every day-in traffic, at work, or while we watch our favourite TV shows at night. The shocking reality is that all this sitting for hours on end may be killing us.

Sitting may seem like a really harmless activity, but medical experts say that doing so for long periods of time every day is associated with serious health problems like Type 2 diabetes, joint pain, blood clotting, and cardiovascular disease.

You may have heard the phrase, “sitting is the new smoking”, which is credited to Dr. James Levine, Professor of Medicine at the Mayo Clinic. He has spent years studying the science of sitting, and the unintentional danger we put ourselves in each day by leading sedentary lives.

Human bodies were not designed to sit as much as we do, says Dr. Levine.

Our ancestors spent most of their lives upright as they hunted for, and grew food – only occasionally sitting down for breaks. In his book Get Up! Why Your Chair Is Killing You, he states that we’ve gone from an ancient world of movers to a modern world of chair sloths.

If sitting is so relaxing, why is it bad for you?

The problem lies in how much of it, and for how long, we sit each day. When our bodies are in a static position for a lengthy period of time, all kinds of bad things happen, such as blood circulation – which is crucial for good health – slows down, affecting every system of the body.

Poor blood circulation allows fatty acids to build up in the blood vessels, leading to heart disease. And, according to World Thrombosis Day, another risk is that when your legs remain still for hours, your calf muscles don’t contract, which normally helps blood circulate.

This can lead to deep vein thrombosis (DVT), where clots form in the calves of your legs if your calf muscles don’t move for long periods.

DVT is a serious problem. If a part of the blood clot breaks off it can travel to the lungs, and cause blockages. This is called a pulmonary embolism (PE), and it may be fatal.

What you can do

Try and assess how many hours you spend “bottom-bound” in a day, including commuting to work, sitting at your desk, running errands in your car, and on the couch at night. Added up, it’s probably more than you think. Children who lead a sedentary life and sit for hours playing video games and watching TV instead of playing outside are at risk of health complications, too.

It’s clear that excessive sitting is impacting people negatively, just as smoking has over the years, so how can you break the habit? It’s not enough to just stand up all day long, says Dr. Helen Okoye, a leading Nigerian thrombosis specialist who is part of the global World Thrombosis Day steering committee.

Having your body stay still in any static position – whether it’s sitting, standing or lying down – day after day isn’t good for you. And, she adds, while it’s important to exercise, like going for a run or to the gym, exercise alone is not enough to offset the negative effects of too much sitting. Sitting is an independent risk factor, and its solution lies in incorporating as much movement into your day as you can.

Stay moving

“It’s all the little movements we do in the day that matter. The trick is to build movement into every part of your life,” advises Okoye. “During your work week, break up chair time by staying in motion whenever possible. Stand up while you’re talking on the phone, go for a walk during lunchtime, and take a five-minute standing break for every hour that you sit down.

“If you know that you’re going to be seated for long periods of time, like at a conference, wear loose-fitting clothing that allows blood to circulate, and stay hydrated by drinking water, to help thin the blood,” says Okoye.

At home, dance while you’re cooking or cleaning the house, and go for a walk with your children at the end of the day when all the family is home. When you’re out shopping, park further away from wherever you’re going and walk the rest of the way. Take the stairs instead of lifts or escalators – or at least walk up the escalator.

Every minute of physical activity counts.

While there’s definitely room for sitting in our day, the bottom line is that we need to give serious thought to how we transform our sitting choices from habitual to intentional.

 “Make it a daily habit to move more,” says. Okoye. “The less you keep your body in a static position throughout the day, the better your chances for living a healthy life.”

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Health & lifestyle

BENEFITS OF MORNING SEX

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According to an article published by the Healthlin, 5 Benefits Of Morning S£x. Here are 5 Benefits of Having intercourse in the morning:

  1. It is essentially childproof.
    Sometimes all it takes to get that alone time in is setting your alarm for ten minutes before the kids get up. By having intimacy first thing in the morning, according to Morse, you can reduce the likelihood that a young child will knock on your door or, in some cases, bust it wide open because they heard something go bump in the night and want to cuddle with you.

Additionally, if you schedule time to have intimacy to relieve tension first thing in the morning, you’ll find it easier to handle school drop-offs and last-minute homework checks.

  1. You won’t be overly exhausted.

Why not save intimate relations for right after you’ve had a restful night of sleep? A long day can really wear you out. Yes, Morse admits, “you probably won’t be overflowing with energy the moment you open your eyes.” But she assures that the journey there won’t take very long.

  1. You’ll glow nicely and naturally.
    Reduce the length of your cosmetic application to five minutes, or forego it altogether: The release of chemicals during a climax also increases estrogen levels, which can enhance the tone and texture of your skin and hair. When you’re already rushed in the morning (is that just me? ), this is very helpful.
  2. Early pleasure improves cognitive function.
    Having intercourse can enhance cognitive function and memory, so you’ll not only be laser-focused during the act itself but also later on in the day when you’re giving a presentation at 3 o’clock. Who really needs to go to Starbucks a second time?
  3. It facilitates later sleep.
    Not because it makes you tired (though an intense romp can), but rather because “when you have intimate relations and orgasm, your brain releases oxytocin, our feel-good hormone, as well as lowers cortisol, dubbed the stress hormone, as well as releases melatonin, which helps us sleep,” which is why it helps you fall asleep.

This chemical concoction creates the ideal mix for a deeper slumber, so you’ll enjoy a decent night’s rest before getting up early the next day.

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Health & lifestyle

EFFECT OF REGULAR SEX ON YOUR SKIN

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Regular intercourse is one of the most important things you can do for your skin. Not only does it help you feel good about yourself, but it can help keep your skin looking healthy and youthful. Studies have shown that people who have intercourse regularly have healthier skin than people who don’t.

According to Healthline, during intercourse, there’s an increase in the rate of blood flowing through your body. This means that more of those blood cells carrying oxygen can reach your face.

When your blood vessels start to dilate, you get that bright flushed look, and a heightened amount of oxygen stimulates collagen production. This collagen that is being produced can prevent and get rid of wrinkles from your skin.

Studies have also shown that regular intercourse raises estrogen levels in your body. This can go a long way to help your skin because estrogen appears to aid in the prevention of ageing skin in several ways.

If you’re not having intercourse, you should at least try to have it twice a week. Even if you don’t feel like it, it’s important for your skin.

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Health & lifestyle

EVERYONE NEEDS A SEXUAL HEALTH CHECKLIST

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How do you know if you’re sexually healthy? Is it when you can desire and have sex as many times as you want, or is it when you’re free of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)? Well, there’s more to sexual health than libidos and orgasms.

What is sexual health?

The World Health Organization (WHO) defines sexual health as “a state of physical, emotional, mental and social well-being in relation to sexuality; it is not merely the absence of disease, dysfunction or infirmity.”

In layman’s English, sexual health is everything that affects your capacity to have a sexual relationship and experience sex in a safe, responsible, and pleasurable manner.

For some, sexual health involves the use of condoms to prevent pregnancy and STDs during sex and then cleaning up afterwards.

But as the definition above shows, sexual health covers a lot more than that.

In this article, we look at the elements that make up sexual health and organise them into a checklist for you to adopt towards maintaining good sexual health.

The checklists are general, but you can adjust them to meet your specific needs.

Let’s get started.

Mental checklist

Your definition of sex informs how you see yourself in relation to the act itself. It helps to prepare your mind and body to get involved in the act of sex in a way that agrees with your values.

Physical checklist

Sex is not an abstract concept. Are your genitals ready to go? You need to find out.

Before you rush to the doctor, start by examining yourself.

To do this, get someplace comfortable and keep a relaxed posture. Reach down and examine your genitals carefully for:

  1. Swellings
  2. Lesions or hard tissue
  3. Discolouration
  4. Ulcerations
  5. Abnormal discharge (especially females)

You’re already familiar with the normal appearance of your genitals. Use the signs above as a checklist and compare them with what you know as normal. If you notice anything unusual, see a general practitioner or a specialist and have it resolved on time.

If you’re a lady, you should examine yourself when you’re not menstruating. Men can check themselves at any time.

The goal here is to help you ‌better appreciate how your genitals look and feel when in good health so that you can spot signs of ill health if or when they appear.

By examining yourself at least once ‌a month, you will be able to detect changes as soon as they appear and take steps to resolve them before they get complicated.

Sometimes, self-examination is not enough. Physical exams can only detect signs or what you can make sense of. Other abnormalities require that you get a specialist’s assessment.

A specialist will help you to do tests such as:

  1. Pap smear (for females)
  2. Prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test (for males)
  3. Overnight erection test (for men having erectile dysfunction)
  4. Ultrasound imaging (for both gender)

Hormonal checklist

Hormones are a special class of chemicals that regulate the functions of your body. A special class of hormones called sex hormones helps to turn you on, produce sperm or eggs, influence the development of your sexual characteristics, and determine the reproductive cycle of a female.

Your hormonal profile is important if you want to have babies. As a man, hormones help your balls to produce sperm; in ladies, they assist the ovaries to produce and release eggs.

To find out if your body pumps the right levels of the hormone, see a specialist. The specialist will take your blood and check for the presence and levels of specific hormones in your body.

Common hormones include:

  1. Progesterone
  2. Testosterone
  3. Estradiol
  4. Prolactin
  5. Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH)
  6. Luteinizing hormone (LH), etc.

The levels of these hormones in your blood will indicate how sexually fit you are.

STD checklist

From HIV to gonorrhoea, herpes, and syphilis, STDs come in various forms and dimensions. If you’re sexually active, you can contract any of these diseases, either via anal, oral, or vaginal sex.

Although the nature of your sexual relationships and the number of your partners influence your risk of contracting STDs, that you have sex is enough to put you at risk.

That’s why you need to get tested and know where you stand.

The list of STDs is long, but you can start by testing for these common ones:

  1. HIV
  2. Gonorrhoea
  3. Syphilis
  4. Herpes
  5. Hepatitis A, B, and C

These STDs are common to both sexes and may manifest differently. Nevertheless, some STDs are more commonly found in ladies than in guys. These include:

  1. Bacterial vaginosis
  2. Yeast infection
  3. Chlamydia trachomatis

Whatever the case, knowing your STD status gives you a chance to play it safe and healthy. Get tested today.

Contraceptives checklist

A contraceptive is any substance, device, or method that prevents you from impregnating someone (if you’re a man) or getting pregnant (if you’re a lady).

It’s quite easy to get lost in the heat of sex, and have a pregnancy that you or your partner didn’t plan for. A contraceptive helps you to avoid that.

Condoms are a readily available example of a barrier contraceptive, but like other options, condoms are not 100% effective even when used appropriately.

It’s up to you to choose the contraceptives most appropriate for you. From short-acting oral contraceptives to long-acting injectables and implants, you can choose the contraceptive that is most suitable for you.

Note, however, that some methods like total vasectomy and bilateral tubal ligation are not reversible.

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