Showing posts with label Wellness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Wellness. Show all posts

An Artificial Heart

Researchers’ Quest for an Artificial Heart

By Alex O’Brien | June 2, 2015 12:47 pm



The need to mend broken hearts has never been greater. In the USA alone, around 610,000 people die of heart disease each year. A significant number of those deaths could potentially have been prevented with a heart transplant but, unfortunately, there are simply too few hearts available.

In 1967 the South African surgeon Christiaan Barnard performed the world’s first human heart transplant in Cape Town. It seemed like a starting gun had gone off; soon doctors all around the world were transplanting hearts.

The problem was that every single recipient died within a year of the operation. The patients’ immune systems were rejecting the foreign tissue. To overcome this, patients were given drugs to suppress their immune system. But, in a way, these early immunosuppressants were too effective: they weakened the immune system so much that the patients would eventually die of an infection. It seemed like medicine was back to square one.


Early Mechanisms

One solution that researchers have pursued since the late 1960s is an artificial heart. Perhaps the most influential device was kick-started by Willem Kolff, the physician-inventor who produced the first kidney dialysis machine. Kolff invited a fellow medical engineer, one Robert Jarvik, to work with him at the University of Utah, and the result was the Jarvik-7. Made up of two pumps, two air hoses and four valves, the Jarvik-7 was more than twice as big as a normal human heart and could only be implanted in the biggest patients – mainly adult men. It had wheels, was as big and heavy (although not as tall) as a standard household refrigerator, and was normally connected to sources of compressed air, vacuum and electricity.

In 1982, Jarvik and Kolff won approval from the US Food and Drug Administration to use it in human patients and implanted it that same year. Their first patient was a 61-year-old dentist called Barney Clark, who lived on the Jarvik-7 for 112 days. A second patient was implanted in 1984 and died after 620 days. History records a total of five patients implanted with the Jarvik-7 for permanent use, all of whom died within 18 months of the surgery from infections or strokes.

The device has been tweaked and renamed many times; at the time of writing, it was the world’s only FDA-approved total-replacement artificial heart device used as a bridge-to-transplant for patients. Another widely used artificial heart, a direct descendent of the Jarvik-7, is the SynCardia. And in the early 2000s, Massachusetts-based company Abiomed unveiled a new heart that (unlike the SynCardia) was designed to be permanent – a total replacement heart for end-stage heart failure patients who were not candidates for transplant and couldn’t be helped by any other available treatment.

But all these versions of artificial heart devices, whether they are meant to support the heart or replace it completely, are trying to copy the functions of the heart, mimicking the natural blood flow. The result is what’s called a pulsatile pump, the flow of blood going into the body like a native heart, at the average of 80 spurts a minute needed to sustain life. That’s the cause of the gentle movement you feel when you put your fingers to your wrist or your chest – your pulse, which corresponds with the beating of your heart.

Today, scientists are working on a new wave of artificial hearts with one crucial difference: they don’t beat.
Pulseless Hearts

The Archimedes’ screw was an ancient apparatus used to raise water against gravity. Essentially, it is a screw in a hollow pipe; by placing the lower end in water and turning it, water is raised to the top. In 1976, during voluntary medical mission work in Egypt, cardiologist Dr. Richard K. Wampler saw men using one such device to pump water up a river bank. He was inspired. Perhaps, he thought, this principle could be applied to pumping blood.

The result was the Hemopump, a device as big as a pencil eraser. When the screw inside the pump spun, blood was pumped from the heart to the rest of the body. It was the world’s first ‘continuous flow’ pump: Rapidly spinning turbines create a flow like water running through a garden hose, meaning the blood flow is continuous from moment to moment.

Because of this, there is no ejection of the blood in spurts. There is no ‘heartbeat’. The patient’s own heart is still beating but the continuous flow from the device masks their pulse, meaning it is often undetectable at the wrist or neck.

And the Hemopump lives on in spirit of newer devices. Abiomed’s newest heart prototype, Impella, uses similar technology boosted by leaps in modern engineering. It has a motor so small it sits inside the device at the end of the catheter, rather than outside of the body. The Impella is the smallest heart pump in use today – it’s not much bigger than a pencil – and as of March 2015 has been approved by the FDA for clinical use, supporting the heart for up to six hours in cardiac surgeries.

Meanwhile, at the Texas Heart Institute, the HeartMate II is being developed. Like the Hemopump, it doesn’t replace the heart but rather works like a pair of crutches for it. About the size and weight of a small avocado, the HeartMate II is suitable for a wider range of patients than the SynCardia and has, on paper, a significantly longer lifespan – up to ten years. Since its FDA approval in January 2010, close to 20,000 people – including former US Vice President Dick Cheney – have received a HeartMate II, 20 of whom have been living with the device for more than eight years. All with an almost undetectable pulse.
The Future of Heart Transplants

I try to imagine a world full of people with no pulse. How, in such a future, would we determine if a person were alive or dead? “That is very easy,” says William (Billy) Cohn, a surgeon at the Texas Heart Institute, bringing my existential philosophizing to a halt. “When we pinch our thumb and it goes from pink to white and immediately back to pink, this means blood is flowing through the body. You can also tell if someone is still alive if they are still breathing.”

He admits that once more of these devices are implanted into patients we will need a standard method of determining such a person’s vitals. Cohn imagines them wearing bracelets or even having tattoos to alert people to their pulseless state.

I wonder how people will take to hearts that literally don’t beat. Perhaps it will be the same as when patients were offered the first heart transplants: resistance, followed by acceptance due to overwhelming need.

“Any new procedure is going to have critics,” says surgeon Denton Cooley. “On the day that Christiaan Barnard did the first heart transplant, the critics were almost as strong, or stronger, than the proponents of [artificial] heart transplantation,” he says. “A lot of mystery goes with the heart, and its function. But most of the critics, I thought, were ignorant, uninformed or just superstitious.”

Cooley performed the first US heart transplant in May 1968. And at 94 years old he still treasures the memory of the day, in 1969, when he implanted the first artificial heart into Haskell Karp and the “satisfaction that came from seeing that heart supporting that man’s life.”

“I had always thought that the heart has only one function, and that is to pump blood,” he says. “It’s a very simple organ in that regard.”

Image by Ociacia/ Shutterstock

This article originally appeared on Mosaic and appears here in edited form.


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Pregnancy By The Months

What Happens in the First Month of Pregnancy?

Pregnancy is divided into 3 trimesters. Each trimester is a little longer than 13 weeks. The first month marks the beginning of the first trimester.

Gestational Age
Pregnancy is measured using “gestational age.” Gestational age starts on the first day of a woman’s last menstrual period (LMP).

Gestational age can be confusing. Most people think of pregnancy as lasting nine months. And it’s true that a woman is pregnant for about nine months. But because pregnancy is measured from a woman’s last menstrual period — about 3-4 weeks before she is actually pregnant — a full-term pregnancy usually totals about 40 weeks from LMP — roughly 10 months.

Many women do not remember the exact date of their last menstrual period — that’s OK. The surest way to tell gestational age early in pregnancy is with ultrasound.

Weeks 1–2

These are the first two weeks of a woman’s menstrual cycle. She has her period.  About 2 weeks later, the egg that is most mature is released from the ovary — ovulation. Ovulation may happen earlier or later, depending on the length of a woman’s menstrual cycle. The average menstrual cycle is 28 days.
After it is released, the egg travels down a fallopian tube toward the uterus. If the egg meets a sperm, they combine to form one cell. This is called fertilization. Fertilization is most likely to occur when a woman has unprotected vaginal intercourse during the 6 days that lead into ovulation.

Weeks 3–4

The fertilized egg moves down the fallopian tube and divides into more and more cells. It reaches the uterus about 3–4 days after fertilization. The dividing cells then form a ball that floats free in the uterus for about 2–3 days.
Pregnancy begins when the ball of cells attaches to the lining of the uterus. This is called implantation. It usually starts about 6 days after fertilization and takes about 3–4 days to be complete.
Pregnancy does not always occur. Up to half of all fertilized eggs pass out of women’s bodies during regular menstruation before implantation is complete.
pregnancy-week-4.jpg
Learn more about how pregnancy happens.

A Woman’s First Signs of Pregnancy
For many women, the first sign of pregnancy is a missed period. Most pregnancy tests will be positive by the time a woman has missed her period. Other early signs of pregnancy include fatigue, feeling bloated, frequent urination, mood swings, nausea, and tender or swollen breasts. Not all women have all of these symptoms, but it is common to have at least one of them. 

What Happens in the Second Month of Pregnancy?

EMBRYONIC DEVELOPMENT
The ball of cells develops into an embryo at the start of the sixth week. The embryonic stage of pregnancy will last about 5 weeks. During this time all major internal organs begin developing.

Weeks 5–6

  • The embryo is less than 1/5 inch (4–5 mm) long.
  • A very basic beating heart and circulatory system develop.
  • Buds for arms and legs develop.
  • The neural tube begins forming. The neural tube will later form the brain, spinal cord, and major nerves.
  • The bud of a tail develops.
  • The umbilical cord begins developing.
Pregnancy Week 6

Weeks 7–8

  • The embryo is 1/4 to 1/2 inch (7–14 mm) long.
  • The heart has formed.
  • Webbed fingers and toes develop.
  • The arms bend at elbows.
  • External ears, eyes, eyelids, liver, and upper lip have begun forming.
  • The sex organs are the same — neither female nor male — in all embryos until the seventh or eighth week. If a gene triggers the development of testes, the embryo develops as a male. If there is no trigger, the embryo develops ovaries and becomes female.
Pregnancy Week 8

PREGNANCY SYMPTOMS

The second month is often when pregnancy symptoms become very noticeable.  Common discomforts like breast tenderness, fatigue, frequent urination, heartburn, nausea, and vomiting usually get worse. A woman’s body produces extra blood during pregnancy, and her heart beats faster and harder than usual to carry the extra blood.

What Happens in the Third Month of Pregnancy?

FETAL DEVELOPMENT

Weeks 9–10

  • The embryo develops into a fetus after 10 weeks. It is 1–1.5 inches (21–40 mm) long.
  • The tail disappears.
  • Fingers and toes are longer.
  • The umbilical cord connects the abdomen of the fetus to the placenta.  The placenta is attached to the wall of the uterus. It absorbs nutrients from the woman’s bloodstream. The cord carries nutrients and oxygen to the fetus and takes wastes away from the fetus.
Pregnancy Week 10

Weeks 11–12

The fetus is now measured from the top of its head to its buttocks. This is called crown-rump length (CRL).
  • The fetus has a CRL of 2–3 inches (6–7.5 cm).
  • Fingers and toes are no longer webbed.
  • Bones begin hardening.
  • Skin and fingernails begin to grow.
  • Changes triggered by hormones begin to make external sex organs appear — female or male.
  • The fetus begins making spontaneous movements.
  • Kidneys start making urine.
  • Early sweat glands appear.
  • Eyelids are fused together.
Pregnancy Week 12

PREGNANCY SYMPTOMS

Many of the pregnancy symptoms from the first 2 months continue — and sometimes worsen — during the third month. This is especially true of nausea. A woman’s breasts continue growing and changing. The area around the nipple — the areola — may grow larger and darker. Women who are prone to acne may experience outbreaks.
Women do not usually gain much weight during the first 3 months of pregnancy — usually about 2 pounds. Women who are overweight or underweight may experience a different rate of weight gain. Talk with your health care provider about maintaining a healthy weight throughout pregnancy.

Miscarriage
Most early pregnancy loss — miscarriage — happens in the first trimester. About 15 percent of pregnancies result in early pregnancy loss during the first trimester.

Learn more about miscarriage.

What Happens in the Fourth Month of Pregnancy?

The fourth month marks the beginning of the second trimester.
FETAL DEVELOPMENT

Weeks 13–14

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 3 inches (8 cm).
  • The sex of the fetus can sometimes be seen by looking at external sex organs on an ultrasound.
  • Hair begins to grow.
  • The prostate gland begins developing in male fetuses.
  • Ovaries move down from the abdomen to the pelvic area in female fetuses.
  • The roof of the mouth is formed.
Pregnancy Week 14

Weeks 15–16

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 4.5 inches (12 cm).
  • Hundreds of thousands of eggs are forming in the ovaries in female fetuses.

PREGNANCY SYMPTOMS

Some of the early signs and symptoms of pregnancy begin to be relieved during the fourth month. Nausea is usually reduced. But other digestive problems — heartburn and constipation — may be troublesome. Breast changes — growth, soreness, and darkening of the areola — usually continue. It’s common for women to have shortness of breath or to breathe faster. Increased blood flow may lead to unpleasant pregnancy symptoms, such as bleeding gums, nosebleeds, or nasal stuffiness. Pregnant women also may feel dizzy or faint because of the changes to their blood and blood vessels.

What Happens in the Fifth Month of Pregnancy?

Weeks 17–18

  • The fetus has a CRL of 5.5–6 inches (14–15 cm).
Pregnancy Week 18

Weeks 19–20

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 6.5 inches (16 cm).  
  • Lanugo  — a fine downy hair — covers the body. 
  • The skin is also covered with vernix caseosa, a greasy material that protects the skin.
  • A uterus has formed in a female fetus.

PREGNANCY SYMPTOMS

Women usually feel fetal movements for the first time during the fifth month. It may feel like flutters or butterflies in the stomach. This is called quickening.
The pregnancy symptoms of the fourth month continue this month. Heartburn, constipation, breast changes, dizziness, shortness of breath, nosebleeds, and gum bleeding are common. Breasts may be as much as 2 cup sizes bigger by this time.

What Happens in the Sixth Month of Pregnancy?

FETAL DEVELOPMENT

Weeks 21–22

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 7 inches (18–19 cm).
  • Bone marrow starts making blood cells.
  • Taste buds begin to form.
Pregnancy Week 22

Weeks 23–24

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 8 inches (20 cm).
  • Eyebrows and eyelashes usually develop between weeks 23 and 26.

PREGNANCY SYMPTOMS

Pregnancy symptoms from the fourth and fifth month usually continue. Shortness of breath may improve. Breasts may start producing colostrum — tiny drops of early milk. This may continue throughout pregnancy.
Some women have Braxton-Hicks contractions. They feel like a painless squeezing of the uterus or abdomen. This is the uterus’s way of practicing for labor and delivery. Braxton-Hicks contractions are normal and not a sign of preterm labor. But women should check with their health care providers if they have painful or frequent contractions or if they have any concerns.

What Happens in the Seventh Month of Pregnancy?

FETAL DEVELOPMENT

Weeks 25–26

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 9 inches (23 cm).
  • The fetus develops more and more fat from now until the end of pregnancy.

Week 27–28

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 10 inches (25 cm).
  • Eyelids are usually fused together until about 28 weeks.
Pregnancy Week 28
PREGNANCY SYMPTOMS
A woman’s uterus continues expanding. Back pain is common. Pregnancy symptoms from earlier months continue. Dizziness may lessen.

What Happens in the Eighth Month of Pregnancy?

The eighth month marks the beginning of the third trimester.
FETAL DEVELOPMENT

Week 29–30

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 10.5 inches (27 cm).
  • Testes usually begin descending into the scrotum from the abdomen between weeks 30 and 34 in a male fetus. This is usually complete by 40 weeks.

Week 31–32

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 11 inches (28 cm).
  • Lanugo starts falling off.
PREGNANCY SYMPTOMS
Women often start feeling tired and have a more difficult time breathing as the uterus expands up. They may get varicose veins — blue or red swollen veins most often in the legs — or hemorrhoids — varicose veins of the rectum. Hemorrhoids can be painful and itchy and cause bleeding. Women may also get stretch marks where skin has been expanded. Braxton-Hicks contractions, heartburn, and constipation may continue. Women may urinate a bit when sneezing or laughing because of pressure from the uterus on the bladder. Hormones may make hair appear fuller and healthier.

What Happens in the Ninth Month?

FETAL DEVELOPMENT

Week 33–34

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 12 inches (30 cm).
  • The eyes have developed enough for pupils to constrict and dilate when exposed to light.
  • Lanugo is nearly all gone.

Week 35–36

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 12.5 inches (32 cm).
  • The fetus is considerably fatter, and the skin is no longer wrinkled.
PREGNANCY SYMPTOMS
The growing fetus places more and more strain on a pregnant woman’s body. Common pregnancy symptoms continue through the end of pregnancy, including fatigue, trouble sleeping, trouble holding urine, shortness of breath, varicose veins, and stretch marks. Some fetuses drop down into the lower part of the uterus during this month. This may relieve the woman’s constipation and heartburn that are common earlier in pregnancy. But some fetuses do not drop down until the very end of pregnancy.

What Happens in the Tenth Month?

FETAL DEVELOPMENT

Week 37–38

  • The fetus has a CRL of about 13–14 inches (34–36 cm).
  • The fetus has a firm grasp.

Week 39–40

Many women give birth around this time.
  • The average newborn weighs 7–8 lbs. and is between 18–22 inches (46–56 cm) long with legs extended.
  • Almost all of the vernix and lanugo are gone. It is common for newborns to have some lanugo that disappears over the first few months of life.
Pregnancy Week 40
PREGNANCY SYMPTOMS
By the end of pregnancy, the uterus has expanded from a woman’s pelvis to the bottom of her rib cage. Pregnancy symptoms in the tenth month largely depend on when the fetus drops down into lower part of the uterus in the pelvis.
Shortness of breath, heartburn, and constipation usually improve when the fetus drops. But the position of the fetus lower in the pelvis causes frequent urination and trouble holding urine.
The cervix will begin to open — dilate — to prepare for delivery. This may happen a few weeks before delivery, or it might start when a woman goes into labor. A woman may feel sharp pains in her vagina as the cervix dilates.
After the newborn is delivered, the placenta and other tissues also come out of the woman’s body. This is called the afterbirth.
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Planned Parenthood

How to Be a Better Spouse

Being nice, paying attention and praising a partner’s strengths all pay off in a long-term relationship


Before you get married, everyone tells you that marriage takes work. I never really believed it until my husband and I landed in therapy after four years, two kids and one seismically stressful cross-country move.





Turns out you really can't just flip the switch to autopilot and trust love to take care of itself; you have to devote actual time and effort to understanding and appreciating your spouse. Anyone who is married knows that's not always a simple feat. Here's what relationship research (and a touch of game theory) tells us about how to become a better spouse.


#1 Be nice as often as you can.


A lot of modern relationship therapy is based on the research of John Gottman, a prolific psychologist famous for videotaping thousands of couples and dissecting their interactions into quantifiable data. One of his most concrete findings was that happier couples had a ratio of five positive interactions to every negative interaction. “That just leapt off the pages of the data analysis,” he says. It was true in very different types of relationships, including those in which the people were very independent and even distant or argumentative. These positive interactions don't have to be grand gestures: “A smile, a head nod, even just grunting to show you're listening to your partner—those are all positive,” Gottman says.


#2 Think about what your partner needs, even when fighting.


To resolve conflicts, Gottman says we can learn from game theory—the study of conflict and decision making used in political science, sociology and economics. It used to be widely accepted that negotiations were mostly zero-sum situations, meaning one party's gain was the other party's loss. In 1950 mathematician John Nash proved there was another, better outcome: a solution in which the parties may have to compromise, but in the end all of them come out satisfied. (This now famous “Nash equilibrium” won him a Nobel Prize in 1994.) I'm reminded of a recent situation in my own marriage—my husband hated the house we bought a couple of years ago and wanted to move to a different neighborhood; I liked the house just fine and didn't want to go anywhere. After much discussion, we realized that what we both really want is to settle in somewhere for the long haul. If the current house is not a place my husband feels he can settle in, then I can't truly settle in either. So we're moving next month, for both our sakes! Find the Nash equilibrium in your conflict, and you'll both get your needs met.


#3 Just notice them.


“People are always making attempts to get their partners' attention and interest,” Gottman says. In his research, he has found that couples who stay happy (at least during the first seven years) pick up on these cues for attention and give it 86 percent of the time.




Pairs who ended up divorced did so 33 percent of the time. “It's the moment we choose to listen to our partner vent about a bad day instead of returning to our television show,” explains Dana R. Baerger, assistant professor of clinical psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. “In any interaction, we have the opportunity to connect with our partner or to turn away. If we consistently turn away, then over time the foundation of the marriage can slowly erode, even in the absence of overt conflict.”


#4 Ignore the bad, praise the good.


Observations of couples at home reveal that people who focus on the negative miss many of the positive things that their partners are doing. Happy spouses, however, ignore the annoyances and focus on the good. “If your wife is irritable one morning, it's not a big deal. It's not going to become a confrontation,” Gottman says. “Then when she does something nice, you notice and comment on that.” Guess what that breeds? More of the good stuff.


It's this lesson that I'm going to try to implement right away. The guy I'm married to leaves dirty shirts balled up on the floor, never loads the dishwasher correctly and can be prickly when he hasn't had enough sleep—but he is an amazing husband. He's honest, shares his feelings, hugs and kisses me, and basically acts like I matter. I want to show him how much he matters, too, and that all the other stupid little stuff doesn't.


This article was originally published with the title "How to Be a Better Spouse."


Feb 12, 2015 |By Sunny Sea Gold                                        Scientific American





5 Bad Habits That Can Ruin Your Relationship

Trending Gists !!!: 5 Bad Habits That Can Ruin Your Relationship:




There are a few habits that we sub-consciously indulge in that could badly harm our relationships. Here's a rundown...












Nagging: Nobody likes a nagger. In fact it could potentially be toxic for a lot of your relationships. It's important to let your partner be and not interfere as much. There's a thin line between being cute and being annoying, know when to draw that line or it can be destructive for your relationship.

Comparing: Learn to appreciate your partner and love him or her for what they are instead of constantly comparing them to every Tom, Dick and Harry. Even if you're doing it subconsciously in your head- stop. And mentioning it to them is an absolute no-no. Your partner deserves better than that.

Talking about your ex: Nobody would like to feel like they're constantly being held up for comparison with your previous lovers. A sure way of ruining your own relationship is by continually bringing up your past liaisons. Till your both reach a stage of security, steer clear of this topic.

Bad communication: Only half-listening to your partner and nodding your head for everything without really paying much attention can be detrimental for your relationship in the long run. Work on your communication and try to really listen and grasp what your partner is talking about to you.

Bringing up the past: Avoid discussing the past. Its important to realize that no matter how much you discuss it or bring it up, it cannot be erased. If you truly want to be with your partner, then make a concerted effort to forget his/her past and move on to newer beginnings. Remember that you are his/her present.



Does a Womans Independence Intimidate Men

One of the most interesting pieces of advice my mother ever gave me was, “Don’t come off too strong when in the presence of a guy you like.”


History has shown it isn’t just my mom who thinks this way; pop culture tells women to bat their eyelashes and wear passive lip gloss instead of bold lipstick to attract a man.
Bill Clinton cheated on the highly successful Hillary with the less-established Monica. Mr. Big married Natasha over Carrie.





Johnny Depp left triple threat Vanessa Paradis for a 20-something up-and-comer. These instances have left me wondering, do independent women intimidate men? And, if so, why?
In order to correctly examine this claim, it’s crucial to define what exactly deems a woman as “independent.”


Several modern feminists refer to themselves as “independent” if they feel they don’t really need men — they just want them. Some feminists will even go so far as to say they don’t even want men.
It should come as no surprise that many of us don’t feel we need men, thanks to better career opportunities than ever before, good friends and great vibrators.


Still, this relatively new, not-needing-a-man reality has proven to be bittersweet: It has propelled the women’s movement forward, but has taken women backward when it comes to romantic relationships.


Joshua Pompey, an expert on dating, has incredible insight on this topic.
In this Huff Post piece, Pompey speaks for successful and highly-driven women:


They pursue the perfect man in the same manner that they have spent their entire lives pursuing the perfect job and education.

The problem is, romance isn’t a trophy. Not enough ‘regular guys’ are given opportunities because women have so many options these days. Especially with the emergence of online dating.

This creates a cultural resentment towards women who are only interested in, say, the top ten percent of the dating population. And because women ‘don’t need’ men, they can afford to search endlessly for a man that may or may not exist.

If smart women do, in fact, intimidate men, it’s safe to say it’s not women’s fault, but the fault of time. Women, just like men, are products of their environment.


It just so happens our contemporary environment is the result of a feminist revolution that’s taken place in both the workplace and the social scene. In other words, we’ve gradually been conditioned to not need men.


Another possible explanation for why successful women scare off men is the old and reliable, “He left her for a bimbo.” First and foremost, some men consider women as sexual objects because men are initially driven by the visual.






The reason so many independent women are alone, then, is because we’re smart enough to have picked up on the fact that men tend to choose hot, less accomplished women over us, and in turn, we use independence as a self-defense mechanism to avoid getting hurt or betrayed.


This Monica-Hillary formula alludes to society’s placement of the label “emotionally unavailable” on single and successful women. If bimbo-loving is the reason why so many successful women are alone, men and their insecurities are to blame.


I wrote this article to follow up my piece, “The Difference Between Loving Someone and Being In Love,” which seemed to garner a lot of attention, most of which was backlash.


I want to elucidate my feelings on the theory; more often than not, women who believe themselves to be intelligent, capable and worthy, end up alone or searching for men with all the same qualities.
It’s possible our expectations for potential partners are too high, but it isn’t probable; moreover, it’s justifiable. Doesn’t a woman who has it all deserve a man who has it all, too? Why should she settle for anything less?


To tie it all together, if what she has, or is capable of doing, scares a man off, how does it seem fair for him to blame her unfaltering drive as a culprit, instead of as a celebration?






Now, I understand why Big married Natasha over Carrie: He wanted to feel like more of a man.
Ladies, don’t ever apologize for your successes. More importantly, don’t ever settle for less than what you think you deserve. It’s better to be alone than to be in a sub-par relationship.


But, as the battle of the sexes continues, I find myself asking a question with the same meaning: Can independent women truly have it all?


Sheena Sharma

Sheena Sharma                           Elite Daily

Contributor - Sheena is a born-and-bred New Yorker. She's a singer, a writer, and a hopeless romantic. Follow her journey here: soundcloud.com/sheena90 -- Twitter: @sheen2990 -- Instagram: sheenybeanz





Are You Sleeping Correctly



#1 Decreased Performance


If you're not getting enough sleep you may notice that your performance during the day is not what it could and should be. Everything from work to physical activity is a struggle.



#2 Lack Of Alertness

Lack of proper sleep can affect metal alertness, making you foggy and not clear headed.


#3 Memory Impairment

When you sleep your brain reboots ... like a computer hard drive, cleaning out information and filing it. If you don't sleep enough you become overloaded.


#4 Unable To Cope With Stress

Everyday stresses seem to become monumental the less quality sleep you get.





#5 Accident Prone  

Your body is not working to it's full capacity on limited sleep, making you more apt to trip or fall.


#6 More Than One Cold A Year





Your immune system suffers from bad sleep habits making you prone to more colds.


Sleep limits the hormone cortisol which contributes to belly fat, in addition to increased hunger when your body is not well rested.






Factors For Relationship Compatibility

6 Surprising Predictors of Relationship Compatibility


Many of us think we know which traits we want our ideal partner to have. Yet for some reason we often find ourselves attracted to people who possess none of those qualities. Sometimes we meet potential mates who seem perfect on paper but with whom we have no immediate spark. Other times we feel instant chemistry but end up with an incompatible long-term partner.
 
Attraction may feel natural, but that doesn’t mean it’s random. To figure out how we choose romantic partners, scientists have done everything from study symmetry of the human face to observe subconscious reactions to the smell of armpit sweat. If there were a formula for lasting love, what percentage of human compatibility can we credit to our behavior and what percentage is simple biology?
 
Surprisingly, research shows that attraction and compatibility can be predicted early on by interpreting some remarkable biological clues. Some signs of attraction and compatibility are obvious, but many may amaze you. Here are 6 surprising predictors that sparks will fly:
 
1. DNA: Your genes matter more than your jeans.
 
According to the biotechnology research company Instant Chemistry, up to 40% of physical attraction is determined by your genes. We are biologically programmed to feel that instant “spark” with someone who has a different genetic makeup than our own, and research shows that genetically compatible partners are more likely to make it work long-term.
 
“But not only do biologically compatible partners produce children with strong immune systems, these couples also enjoy more satisfying sex lives, greater marital stability, and increased fertility rates—and they find each other more attractive!” Instant Chemistry reports.
 
2. Facial features: The eyes (and more) have it.
 
The shape and angle of a person’s face provides insight into reproductive health. Evolutionary biologist Randy Thornhill of the University of New Mexico explains that estrogen influences bone growth in a woman’s face and chin, leading to moderately small and short facial features and prominent eyes. Men’s faces are shaped by testosterone, which results in a larger face and jaw and a more prominent brow. The prevalence of these traits advertises reproductive health, which makes a person seem more attractive to the opposite sex.
 




3. Smell: Your perfect match might be right under your nose.
 
Human odor preferences are shaped by sexual selection, and we are evolutionarily inclined to be sensitive to odor cues. Human sweat carries a lot of information about a person’s gender, genetic compatibility, and reproductive state. Those who maintain a good diet, an indicator of overall health, smell healthier and are more attractive to others. In fact, a team of biologists from the Czech Republic recently found that subjects who ate garlic, which is chock-full of antioxidants, smelled more attractive—ironically!
 
4. Language: What did you say?
 
Studies show that people who use the same kinds of function words (pronouns and conjunctions) when speaking are more likely to be a successful match. After looking at speed-dating results, researchers found a link between function-word similarity and the speed-daters’ odds of going on a second date, as well as couples’ odds of staying together three months after the experiment. Interestingly, language similarity turned out to be an even more accurate predictor of Relationship Compatibility when compared to other factors such as “perceived similarity with one’s date, perceived relationship quality, and how many words people spoke to each other during conversation,” according to a study by Texas Tech University.
 
5. Color: Red is the new black.
 
There’s a reason why red is the color of love and passion. Research shows that both men and women perceive people wearing the color red as powerful, strong, and dominant. Studies also show that the color can produce physical responses like increased heart rate and heightened sense of smell. For women, the color red enhances a man’s attractiveness. Researchers from the University of Rochester found that female study participants even rated the same man as more attractive after seeing him against a red backdrop. Men in another study gave higher tips to waitresses wearing red.
 
But where does the link between red and sexual attraction originate? Scientists think it’s associated with physical signs of sexual excitement like redness in the erogenous areas and facial blushing. In addition, strong blood flow and high testosterone levels in men often produce a reddish tone to the skin. The color itself seems to have evolved into a sign of reproductive health and potential.
 
6. Voice pitch: It’s not what you say but how you say it.
 
If you’ve ever wondered why women swoon over men with low-pitched voices, it’s because we tend to associate men with deep baritones with larger bodies. In contrast, results of a study from University College London showed that male listeners preferred higher-pitched, breathier female voices, which they associated with a smaller body size. Deep male voices and high-pitched female voices are perceived as more attractive because of this association with body size.
 
Needless to say, the rules of attraction are complex, involving much more than good looks and a witty pickup line. Hot or not, research shows that your body knows what you’re attracted to better than you do! If you’re looking for love, you can put on a red shirt, eat some garlic, and hope for the best. Or you can follow the roadmap to love that’s already in your DNA. After all, while love is not an exact science, you may have had the clues to finding it all along.
 
To learn more, come visit RewireMe.com




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Simple Tips to Relieve Stress and Pressure

Stress and anxiety are prevalent in modern life. When the pressures and demands exceed your capabilities, stress and anxiety soon raise their ugly heads. The consequences can be horrific. Your health, relationships, and career can be seriously affected by stress and anxiety. When you find yourself in this situation, it is important not to panic. You need to devise a plan and some actions which can get you back on track and carry you towards the achievement of your goals and objectives. Wallowing in despair has never solved a problem, nor will it ever do so. Positive, effective action is required.

7 Steps to relieve stress and anxiety

The following 7 steps will help you to relieve stress and anxiety, wherever or whenever it may arise in your life. When you find yourself experiencing stress and anxiety, work your way through these steps and you will experience relief.

1. Establish a routine

Stress and anxiety often arise as a result of disorganisation or lack of control. Having a routine for your life gives you predictability and control over events. When you have clear routines, which you can follow on a daily basis, you are able to make progress on your key goals and objectives, without having to exert a great deal of thought or effort. Small steps, taken daily, carry you towards your objective.
There will be times when issues arise out of the blue. However, these occasions will be fewer and further between. As the majority of your life will be under control, these events will have a lesser impact and you will have more energy and confidence to tackle them quickly.

2. Establish a support group

I am not talking about a formal support group here, although depending on your specific issues, a formal support group may be able to help you. Regardless of the issues which you face, your life can always benefit from mutually beneficial relationships. These are the type of relationships where friends support each other, through good times and bad.
This is not about burdening others with your problems. When you have built mutually supportive relationships, you have friends who are happy to lend an ear and help you through your most difficult times.

3. Be good to yourself

When you are down and you are overcome by stress and anxiety; it feels like the world is beating you up. There is no need for you to join in. Rather than berate yourself; take the time to shower yourself with love and kindness. When you are overcome by stress and anxiety; it takes a lot of confidence and self-esteem to pull through.
Be the first person to treat you with kindness and compassion. When you believe yourself to be worthy of kindness and compassion, and you demonstrate this through your behaviour, others will follow suit. If you have hit a low point, remember that being good to yourself is the start of your recovery.

4. Practice acceptance

It may be tempting to deny how you are feelings but there is nothing to be gained by doing so. When you deny your feelings, you bottle them up. This does not eliminate those feelings. Instead, they reside within you and they come back to bite you, regularly. Remember, pretending that something does not exist does not make it go away.
The healthy approach is to accept and acknowledge your feelings.  Ideally, you would talk to somebody that you trust but if this is not possible; try to find some way to express your feelings. Other methods include:
  • Keeping a journal
  • Painting
  • Poetry
  • By being active e.g. physical training, punching a punch bag
There are endless ways to express and release your feelings so choose at least 1 which suits you.

5. Tackle what you can

If your stress and anxiety is severe, you might not be in a position to tackle the whole problem. This can cause you to sit idly by and watch as your stress and anxiety increases. Just because you cannot tackle the entire problem; it does not mean that you cannot tackle parts of the problem. Break the problem down into the smallest tasks possible. Then, identify which tasks you are ready to tackle and take the necessary action.
As you complete each task, no matter how small, you are reducing the size of the problem and reducing its impact on you. As you do so, your confidence and momentum builds and you feel ready to take on bigger and bigger challenges. Recovery is a gradual process but it will occur quicker if you keep taking positive action, one small step at a time.

6. Have fun

One common trait that I find amongst clients who are stressed is the lack of fun time. When you get really busy, it is easy to forget about scheduling some time to have fun and relax. Fun and relaxation do not occur naturally for busy people. You do have to schedule them. Review your schedule to ensure that you are including sufficient time for your favourite hobbies; sufficient time with your family, friends and loved ones; and sufficient time for relaxation.
Life cannot be all work and no play. Building fun and relaxation into your schedule will have a profound effect on your stress and anxiety levels.

7. Avoid overuse of dependant substances

There are a number of dependant substances which people turn to when faced with pressure or stress. These include drugs (both prescription and illicit), alcohol, tobacco and caffeine. While these substances may give you a temporary sense of relief, your problems will still be there when their effects wear off. Also, these substances, when misused, bring problems of their own.
From my own experience; when I was under a lot of stress, I used to have a few drinks. While it never turned into a dependency, I found that drinking had no positive impact. This was one of the many reasons why I decided to give up alcohol in 2006. Since I gave up alcohol, my ability to solve problems and avoid stressful situations has improved exponentially.
We are living in a hyperactive and highly active time. With the increase in technology, we are contactable 24/7 and we are expected to solve problems quicker than ever before. These are just some of the unrealistic demands which have been placed upon us. The improvement in technology has resulted in a misguided pursuit of greater efficiencies, instead of greater effectiveness.  When you add in the impact of a world recession, the need to be able to manage yourself and your life is more important than ever before.
There may be times when your ability to cope with the pressure is exceeded, resulting in stress and anxiety. When this happens, rather than panic, you can focus on taking positive action to overcome the problem. The 7 steps, outlined above, will help you make giant strides towards eliminating stress and anxiety from your life.


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