Five Ways A Nursing Mom Can Lose Weight

By Conqueror Team

Becoming a mother is one of the most beautiful life experiences. However, growing a tiny little body inside yours causes a lot of emotional as well as physical changes. Women are advised to eat healthily during pregnancy and avoid strenuous exercises to promote their baby’s healthy growth. Generally, six weeks after giving birth, moms are given the go-ahead to hit the gym.

Breastfeeding is healthy for both the mother and the baby. However, women who nurse their babies tend to lose weight faster compared to other mothers. Although potentially desirable, rapid weight loss can be unhealthy for the mother.

Article Summary: In this article, you will get to know how to lose weight without compromising the quantity and quality of your breast milk. The following tips should be kept in mind when new mothers are trying to get back in shape:

1.      Eat healthy meals and avoid crash dieting;

2.      Keep hydrated;

3.      Easy postpartum exercises;

4.      Build up stamina;

5.      Take care of your mental health.

Eat Healthy Meals And Avoid Crash Dieting

The quality of the mother’s diet is essential for breast milk quality. Be mindful when choosing what you eat and avoid zero-calorie items. Make sure your diet includes a hefty quantity of vegetables and fruits. Rice and whole grains are good nutrients for breastfeeding mothers, but they must be mindful of the serving size. Proteins are also an essential and suitable choice for weight loss. Finally, including eggs, spinach, nuts, and olive oil in meals ensures the diet includes healthy fats.

Keep Hydrated

Water is essential for losing weight and maintaining a healthy breast milk supply. Breast milk is made up of 90 per cent water so it is vital to stay hydrated – drink at least 10 to 12 glasses of water per day. Dehydration results in frequent headaches and a confused mind. Sweating during exercise also causes water loss, so replace it with drinking additional water.

Easy Postpartum Exercises

Exercise is essential for achieving the desired weight loss target. Try to build a regime that doesn’t involve intensive workouts and, instead, includes stretching exercises, straightforward weightlifting, yoga, walking and jogging. You can also incorporate Kegel exercises to strengthen the pelvic muscles.

Build Up Stamina

After getting the go-ahead from the doctor, you might feel the urge to work out day and night to get back into shape. This is an unhealthy choice! Keep yourself motivated by breaking your targets into smaller chunks.

Remember, your baby relies on you for nutrition, so working out like a maniac is not a good option as it may negatively affect your breast milk supply.

Take a few weeks to build up the stamina for strength training and high-intensity exercises. The easy way to resume building stamina would be walking, jogging, and yoga; stay alert for any discomfort symptoms while performing these exercises, especially if you have had a cesarean.

Take Care of Your Mental Health

Postpartum depression is common among new mothers. According to a study, around 10 to 15 per cent of mothers suffer from this mood disorder every year. The main contributors to this disorder are stress, genes and hormones. Many women also face eating disorders during this phase, resulting in either abrupt weight gain or unhealthy weight loss.

During the first few weeks after having a baby, mothers tend to fall victim to depression. The risk of this can be reduced through:

·         Counseling;

·         Medication;

·         Strong family support;

·         Taking one day at a time;

·         Eating a healthy diet and getting proper sleep.

Bottom Line

New moms should stop comparing themselves to others. Every person has a different metabolism. Give yourself time and try some of the tips mentioned earlier. Have regular check-ups with your general practitioner and dietician to monitor the weight loss and always set an achievable weight loss target.

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Exercises to Do When You Feel Anxious

By Conqueror Team

When stress affects your brain and its many nerve connections, the rest of the body is affected as well. Alternatively, if your body feels better, so will your mind. Exercise and other forms of physical activity release endorphins, which are chemicals in the brain that work as natural painkillers. They also enhance sleep quality, which decreases stress.

Exercise is important for maintaining mental health and can help alleviate stress. According to research, it is particularly good in reducing tiredness, increasing alertness and attention, and improving general cognitive performance. This is especially useful if anxiety has sapped your energy or ability to focus.

Regular exercise, according to some research, works as well as medicine for some people in reducing feelings of anxiety and depression, and the results can be long-lasting. A strenuous exercise session can help relieve symptoms for hours, and a regular plan can help lessen them significantly over time.

Here are some excises to do if you are burdened with anxiety

Progressive muscle relaxation (PMR) for anxiety

Progressive muscle relaxation aims to show your brain what it feels like for your muscles to be relaxed and tension-free. Make yourself at ease in a seated position before beginning PMR. Flex each major muscle group for 10 seconds, then release for 10 seconds, beginning at the tips of your toes and working your way up. Continue to the next muscle group, flexing for 10 seconds and then releasing for 10 seconds.

Square breathing exercises for anxiety

Square breathing helps to balance the levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide in our bodies, which can go out of balance when we are anxious. Breathing in, holding the breath, exhaling, and holding it again for four counts each is square breathing.

Repeat the cycle for a few minutes. This anxiety reduction technique improves relaxation and better thinking, which aids in the resetting of emotional peaks.

The result, like other types of therapy, might vary: some individuals may respond well, others may feel it has no influence on their mood, and some may only have a minor short-term gain. Nonetheless, studies believe that the benefits of exercise on physical and mental health are undeniable and that people should be encouraged to be physically active.

We also offer a fantastic online course for enhancing your memory. To begin, click here.      

Loneliness, Isolation and Mental Health

By Tonny Wandella

Since the dawn of time, loneliness has existed as a phenomenon that we all encounter. Every single one of us experiences it occasionally, and it can happen amid life transitions like the loss of a loved one, a divorce, or a relocation to a new place. Researchers refer to this type of loneliness as reactive loneliness.

Chronic loneliness is more likely to develop when people lack the emotional, mental, or financial resources to get out and meet their social requirements, or when they lack a social circle that can give them these advantages.

Loneliness may occur even when people are surrounded by others—on the subway, in a classroom, or even with their wives and children. Loneliness is not synonymous with intentional isolation or solitude. Rather, loneliness is characterised by people’s degrees of happiness with their connectivity or their perceived social isolation.

Prolonged isolation can have a negative impact on physical and mental health, affecting sleep and dietary patterns and diminishing opportunities for mobility (Cacioppo and Hawkley, 2003). As a result, the natural channels of human expression and enjoyment become depressed, affecting mood and subjective well-being (Nardone and Speciani, 2015).

Those who are lonely may develop harmful behaviours if they do not receive support from family or friends. Loneliness is related to emotions of emptiness, despair, and humiliation, as well as a subjective impression of being cut off from people. It can occur not just in the setting of social isolation, but it can also extend beyond this and be felt even while people are physically present. Loneliness, like social isolation, has been associated with depression, elevated cortisol levels, reduced immunity, and clinical illness, with attendant increases in hospital time and frequency.

Loneliness is more likely to strike elderly persons when they are suffering from functional limitations and have no family support. Loneliness in elderly persons is reduced by increased social engagement and less family tension. Loneliness can cause long-term “fight-or-flight” stress signals, which can impair immune system function. Simply put, persons who are lonely have lower immunity and more inflammation than those who are not.

Everyone’s experience with social isolation is unique, and what works for you may not work for someone else. Keeping a journal and writing about your social experiences may also be beneficial. A therapist may also be a valuable resource, assisting you in working through feelings of isolation and toward a more connected lifestyle. Learn more about improving your memory power by taking our online course. Click here to get started.

When Depression Is Getting Out of Hand

By Conqueror Team

Everyone has bad days when they are exhausted, irritated, and depressed. It’s natural to feel unhappy in response to painful life events, loss, or changes, but these feelings can linger for a long time if left ignored, making it difficult to get through each day.

Depression affects practically every aspect of your life, interfering with how you think, feel, and perform daily tasks from sleeping, working to socialising.

Although important life events can impact some people’s despair, the truth is that depression can strike anyone at any time with no cause or warning. In reality, depression is one of the most frequent mood disorders, affecting 8.7% of women and 5.3% of men each year. According to research, genetics, biology, environment, and psychology can all have a part in depression.

It’s crucial to remember that depression can range from moderate to severe, but even mild episodes should be addressed seriously. Depression is not only a “poor mood” or something that can be “snapped out of,” but it is very curable.

If you have severe depression, you will most likely notice the following symptoms:

  • Hopelessness
  • Sadness
  • A pessimistic perspective or catastrophic thinking
  • A sense of shame, remorse, or worthlessness
  • A feeling of numbness
  • Difficulties with attention or memory
  • Suicidal thoughts

Suicide is a genuine threat to those of us who are severely depressed. Some suicides go unreported because they are mislabelled as accidents, drug overdoses, or shootings. Up to 15% of adults with untreated depression will commit suicide.

Be mindful that suicidal behaviour is frequently impulsive. Remove any weapons, medicines, or other potential means of self-harm. Ask a trusted individual to keep a gun or other weapon away from you. Get rid of unused pills by putting them in a bag with cat litter or dirt and throwing the entire package away. By removing such items from your environment, you may gain valuable time to resist a suicide inclination and consider alternate ways to cope with your grief.

If you see any of these significant depression signs in yourself or someone you care about, seek treatment immediately. According to the APA, major depression is a fairly curable condition in most people, with a wide range of drugs and therapies that have been demonstrated to help. Check out our online course on how to take care of your memory and other memory loss-related illnesses. Click here to get started.

Warm Water Bathing To Reduce Mental Stress

by Tonny Wandella

A decent bath may be considered a small luxury now and then, but it actually has scientifically established benefits for your mental health.  Hot baths are also thought to be particularly transformational since they warm us up. Increased body temperature at night aids in the synchronisation of our natural circadian rhythms, resulting in enhanced sleep patterns, quality of sleep, and general well-being.

There are also other substances you may use to assist reduce tension even more and produce a more relaxing experience during bathing. There are an endless number of combinations and methods to help you relax and unwind, from using Epsom salt for anxiety to making a bath salt recipe with dead sea salt.

Taking a bath has been shown in studies to stimulate your parasympathetic nervous system, which is the part of your body necessary for relaxation. As your nervous system adjusts to the warming impact of the water surrounding you, you start to feel less stressed. A bath can actually compel your body to adjust how it handles anxiety if you are feeling anxious.

A warm bath could also help with breathing. The warmth of the water and the pressure on your chest expand your lung capacity and oxygen intake. Passive heating, such as spending time in a sauna, has been demonstrated in a growing body of studies to reduce the chance of having a heart attack, improve blood sugar control, and even assist lower blood pressure.

Many patients with chronic conditions experience depression and despair. Hot baths can bring physical comfort and contentment, as well as help alleviate the melancholy associated with chronic pain. This is because a warm bath can even help with the discomfort and pain of tight muscles, strains, sprains, and osteoarthritis.

As you can see, bathing is more than simply a way to keep ourselves clean; it can also help us reduce our mental and physical stress. Other useful techniques for being mentally sharp and at ease can be found in our online course. To get started, simply click here.

Top Ten Reasons Why Mental Health Is So Important

By Plan Street

Mental health is essential for leading a happy life. It affects how we feel, think, and live our lives by encompassing our emotional, psychological, and sociological well-being. Prioritizing mental health is, of course, critical.

According to the University of Oxford “For 2017, this study estimates that 792 million people lived with a mental health disorder. This is slightly more than one in ten people globally (10.7%)”. Similarly, a study by the National Alliance of Mental Health showed that

  • 1 in 5 U.S. adults experience mental illness each year
  • 1 in 20 U.S. adults experience serious mental illness each year
  • 1 in 6 U.S. youth aged 6-17 experience a mental health disorder each year
  • 50% of all lifetime mental illness begins by age 14, and 75% by age 24
  • Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among people aged 10-34.

Let us understand in detail why is mental health important and what we can do to keep it intact:

  1. Mental Health plays a crucial role in relationships:

The link between mental health and relationships is one of the most compelling reasons for its importance. Mental Illness might have an impact on how we interact with our friends and family. Mental illnesses frequently result in passive-aggressiveness, hostility, and the incapacity to participate in social activities. This may result in conflicts with our friends and family. Mental illness has the potential to compel us to overthrow our loved ones for no apparent reason. Self-care for mental health and, if necessary, medication can help us live a mentally stable existence while also maintaining our relationships.

  1. Mental Health Affects Physical Health:

There’s a link between our mental health and our physical health. Mental illness can induce stress and have an effect on our immune systems. As a result, our bodies ability to cope with illness may be jeopardized. A sick mind can lead to anxiety and sadness, both of which can make it difficult to move about and stay active. The mind-body connection is well-established, which is why mental health awareness is so crucial.

  1. Mental Health is related to Emotional Well-Being

Every day, how you feel on the inside is just as important as how physically healthy you are. Mental health advice demonstrates how a negative mind can make you feel down, irritated, or disturbed. Taking care of our emotional well-being can help us be more productive and effective at work and in our daily activities. To maintain track of our emotional and overall well-being, we can seek mental health advice from friends, family, and a psychologist.

  1. Mental Health Awareness Can Help in Curbing Suicide Rates

According to a study by the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI), 46 percent of those who commit suicide have a recognized mental health condition. Another study conducted by the United States Department of Health and Human Services found that approximately 60% of those who committed suicide had a good condition such as major depression, bipolar disorder, or dysthymia. This demonstrates the link between mental health and suicide, as well as how early medical intervention and self-care can help minimize the number of suicide deaths. It is critical to follow suggestions to maintain our mental health and to be aware of the mental health of those around us at all times.

  1. Mental Health is linked with Crime and Victimization

As per some studies, poor mental health puts one at an increased risk of committing violent crimes. It also leads to self-victimization and abuse. This risk is further substantiated if the individual consumes drugs and alcohol and is averse to taking medication. In most cases, crimes by mentally unfit persons are committed against family members or those within their close circles. Seeking tips for mental health from a medical professional and understanding why mental health is important can help in avoiding such scenarios.

  1. Mental Health is connected to Productivity and Financial Stability

One of the many reasons why it’s crucial to look after your mental health is that it boosts your overall productivity and financial security. According to research published in the American Journal of Psychiatry, those with serious mental diseases earn 40% less than those in good mental health. According to the World Health Organization, almost 200 million workdays are lost each year owing to depression alone. It is widely known that poor mental health causes a drop in productivity, which has an impact on financial stability. It is critical that we do the appropriate things for mental health in order to secure strong work performance and financial security.

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Eating Habits that Influence Good Mental Health

By Tonny Wandella

We’re taught from an early age that eating healthy helps us feel and look our best. What we aren’t frequently taught is that excellent eating has a huge impact on our mental health as well. A nutritious, well-balanced diet can improve our ability to think clearly & feel more awake. It also helps with focus and attention span.

An inadequate diet, on the other hand, can cause weariness, decreased decision-making, and slow reaction time. In fact, poor nutrition can increase, and even cause, stress and melancholy.

Aim to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables as well as meals high in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon, to improve your mental health. Dark green leafy veggies, in particular, are brain-protective. Nuts, seeds, and legumes, like beans and lentils, are also fantastic brain meals.

What is the relationship between Food and Mood?

Food satisfies both the body and the intellect. We eat nutritious foods in order for our bodies to grow, repair, and function properly. Our brain requires nutritional nutrients as well. In reality, it’s extremely hungry – the brain consumes approximately 20% of our overall daily energy requirements.

When we eat healthy foods, we provide our bodies (and brains) with the building blocks they require to function optimally. All nutrients, from minerals and vitamins to healthy fats and fibre, play a role in brain health and performance.

Following healthy eating, a pattern has been linked to improved stress management, better sleep quality, higher focus, and overall mental well-being. Our eating choices have an impact on both our physical and mental health.

Foods to Eat to Improve Your Mood

There is no such thing as a superfood for mental health. It’s all about balance, variety, and consuming foods from all five dietary categories.

Fruits and vegetables include fibre, which helps to maintain a healthy intestinal environment. Fibre is a favourite food of the beneficial bacteria in our gut, which promote our overall health in a variety of ways. Fruits and vegetables also provide a variety of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that promote brain function. Aim for two servings of fruit and five servings of vegetables every day.

Wholegrains are another fantastic source of fibre for our good gut bacteria, as well as healthy lipids for brain function and slow carbs for a consistent supply of brain fuel.

Protein included in lean meats, fish, and eggs serves as a building block for various brain chemicals that might affect our mood. Fish, particularly fatty fish, as well as nuts, seeds, and legumes, are high in the beneficial fats and vitamins that promote excellent mental health and are believed to guard against dementia and depression. Dairy foods, such as yoghurt, contain living good bacteria (called probiotics) that can improve our gut health, which in turn influences our mood and also mental health.

Drinking plenty of fluids, particularly water, helps to prevent dehydration, which is a major cause of headaches, weariness, and ‘brain fog,’ which can impair our ability to concentrate. However, avoid soothing your thirst with sugary liquids, such as soft drinks.

it is important to remember that the causes of mental illness are many and varied, and they will often present and persist independently of nutrition and diet. Thus, the increased understanding of potential connections between food and mental wellbeing should never be used to support automatic assumptions, or stigmatisation, about an individual’s dietary choices and mental health. Indeed, such stigmatisation could be itself be a casual pathway to increasing the risk of poorer mental health.

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This article will help you guard your precious asset, your mental health.

Bad habits may be sucking the joy right out of your life.

You probably already know that bad habits can make you sick. Eating cheesy sausage eggs each morning and pizza every night will drive up your cholesterol, increase your waistline, and might even give you heart disease.

Just as bad habits can be harmful to your physical health, some bad habits can negatively affect your mental health. These habits can increase your risk of depression, for example, or cause you to feel more anxious or stressed out.

These ten bad habits may be sabotaging your mental health:

1. Perfectionism

Pursuit of excellence is a healthy habit – it is always important to do your best when trying to achieve an important goal. Doing something perfectly can increase your chances of success, of course, but the need to be perfect at all times can actually undermine your efforts.

Psychologists describe perfectionism as positive or negative. Positive perfectionism helps you do your best – as a perfectionist, you never deliver anything short of your absolute finest work. Habits of positive perfectionism include setting realistic goals, letting go of failures, seeing mistakes as opportunities for growth, keeping anxiety and stress within healthy boundaries, and enjoying the process as well as the outcome.

Habits of negative perfection includes setting standards beyond your reach, dissatisfaction with anything less than perfection, preoccupation with failure or disapproval, and seeing mistakes as evidence of unworthiness. 

2. Poor Posture

Simply sitting up straight can reduce symptoms of depression, according to a study published in the Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry. Several other studies show good posture improves self-esteem and mood, but the results of the new study suggest that good posture increases positive attitude, reduces fatigue, and decreases self-focus in those with mild to moderate depression.

3. Guilt

Guilt has a limited place in society – feeling remorseful about a wrongdoing usually prevents a person from committing that offense again.

The habit of guilt often starts in childhood, when you learned to “clean your plate because there were starving kids in China” or to act a certain way out of fear that your family would not be proud of you. As you grew older, the emotional grip of guilt may have matured too. You may feel guilty about leaving your family to go to work, for example, and then feel guilty about leaving your job to go home to your family. Left unchecked, you may find yourself in a state of perpetual guilt that prevents you from giving your full attention to any one task.

Habits of guilt include magnifying problems, claiming responsibility for creating or resolving problems that had little or nothing to do with you, perceiving yourself as a bad person for committing minor offenses, and refusing to forgive yourself.

4. Lack of Exercise

A sedentary lifestyle is bad for your waistline, your heart and, as it turns out, your mental health. PsychCentral refers to exercise as “nature’s mood enhancer.”

Regular exercise may ease depression by releasing endorphins and other “feel good” chemicals, suppressing immune system chemicals that worsen depression, and increasing body temperature to create a calming effect. Exercising regularly can also give you confidence, distract your mind from worries, improve social interaction, and help you cope with life stresses in a healthy way.

Bad exercise habits that affect your mental health include exercising irregularly or not at all, exercising to the point of exhaustion, practicing bad form, and engaging in only one form of exercise.

5. Failure Mindset

Everyone has negative thoughts now and then, and occasional feelings of failure usually pose no mental health problem. Fostering these negative thoughts can create a failure mindset, however, which can interfere with your ability to succeed. Ugly thoughts that say your life is bleak, miserable, and without hope or meaning can become good company on sleepless nights, and prevent you from making forward progress during the day. Left unleashed, continual thoughts of failure become habit.

Thoughts and feelings of failure inflict terrible damage on mental health, leading to anxiety and depression. Negative thoughts discourage you from setting goals, diminish the value of your natural talents, and magnify your missteps.

The habits of a failure mindset include listening to that inner voice that says you cannot succeed, that you have no choice, or that you should back out before the world discovers that you are a fraud.

6. Overuse of Social Media

The Child Mind Institute says that overuse of social media is promoting anxiety and lowering self-esteem in teenagers. The mental health issues resulting from social media use can also affect adults. The Telegraph reports a recent survey of 1500 adult Facebook and Twitter users in which 62 percent of participants reported feelings of inadequacy and 60 percent reported jealousy from comparing themselves to other social media users. Thirty percent said using just these two forms of social media made them feel lonely.

Using too many social media sites may be dangerous to your mental health. A recent study published in Psychiatric News links the use of multiple social media platforms with an increased risk for depression and anxiety.

7. Overuse of a Smartphone, Even Not on Social Media

Using a smartphone is a very rewarding activity. An endless variety of apps, messaging systems and websites trigger positive feelings. Habitual smartphone use, however, causes you to check your device constantly in fear of missing out. Some mental health professionals worry excess smartphone use can cause a form of addiction, with users compulsively checking for notifications and updates.

Compulsive or excessive use of a smartphone could worsen symptoms of depression, anxiety, chronic stress and/or low self-esteem, according to recent research published in the Journal of Affective Disorders. An absence of good news in notifications, a steady stream of distressing news coverage, and fighting on social media can amplify negative effects of smartphone overuse.

8. Regret

Regret is another emotional state that is healthy only in small doses. Everyone has some regrets in life – not marrying someone, taking a job, buying a car – but regret should not be a daily habit.

Many Americans seem to have a habit of regret. Research cited by Psychology Today says that regret is more common in cultures where people have greater control over their life choices.

With daily practice, regret can turn into lifelong rumination over what could have been. A habit of regret can lead to depression, anxiety, sleep problems, and difficulty concentrating. Results from a study by Concordia University suggest regret can even negatively affect physical health.

9. Co-dependency

The habit of co-dependency interferes with your ability to enjoy a healthy, mutually satisfying relationship. Mental Health America says that families pass the learned behavior of co-dependency down through the generations, so you may have learned this people-pleasing habit from your parents.

Psychologists first used the term “co-dependency” to describe partners in chemical dependency but many now use it to describe any one-sided relationship. Habits of co-dependency include sacrificing yourself to take care of another person and putting someone else’s desires ahead of your needs. Co-dependency robs you of your individuality while endangering your health, welfare, and safety.

10. Poor Sleep

Sleep is a source of physical and emotional resilience. By providing your brain and body an opportunity to recover from the difficulties of the previous day, sleep helps you rise to the challenges of tomorrow. Losing sleep for one or two nights can make you feel groggy, grumpy, and out of focus, but a habit of poor sleep can wreak havoc on your mental health.

Research shows people with mental health problems tend to sleep poorly. The Sleep Health Foundation reports that 60 to 90 percent of patients with depression also have insomnia. More than half of all insomnia cases are associated with depression, anxiety, or psychological stress, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).

Now researchers think poor sleep can result in mental health problems, according to Harvard Mental Health Letter published by Harvard Medical School, and that treating the sleep disorder can help relieve mental health symptoms.

Bad sleep habits include getting too little sleep or inadequate sleep, drinking caffeine late in the day, engaging in stressful situations before bedtime, and using electronic devices before bedtime.

When it comes to mental health, these habits and patterns of thinking can be your worst enemy. Breaking bad habits takes considerable work and time but, with practice and determination, you can learn new habits that improve your mental health.


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