The Checkup: Why You Should Order a Fancy Cocktail Tonight — For Your Waistline

One weekend habit that could help you shed pounds? When you head out for drinks after work with friends (because it’s the freakin’ weekend!), treat yourself to a fancy cocktail instead of a cheap happy hour deal. It’s simple math: If you’re sticking to a budget, you’ll probably indulge in just one instead of overdoing it on the cheap stuff, lowering your calorie count in the process. [Women’s Health]

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The Checkup: The Unexpected Everyday Habits That Are Making You Bloated

• Plan on eating a salad for lunch paired with a can of sparkling water sipped through a straw? Well, if that salad has broccoli or Brussels sprouts in it, be prepared for some post-lunch bloat. Turns out we don’t have the enzyme to break those guys down well. And you may want to lose the carbonation and the straw — both of those are bloat culprits, too. Here, everything you need to know about bloating, including the unexpected everyday habits that cause it and how to best deal with it. [Women’s Health]

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Meet the 2016 Health Hero Challenge Semifinalists!

health hero logoDrumroll, please! We are very excited to introduce you to the 16 semifinalists for this year’s Health Hero Challenge, our fifth annual search for Philly’s Health Hero. Once September 13th rolls around, we’ll be opening the contest up to reader voting here so that you — yes, you! — can select a winner.

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The Checkup: Trying to Lose Weight? Do These 6 Things Before Lunch 

• Earlier, I saw a headline that read something along the lines of “20 Things to Do to Have a Healthy Night.” I thought to myself, twenty things to do just so I can go to bed? Pass. But six things — six things seems manageable enough. And if you’re trying to lose weight, checking these six tasks off your to-do list in the hours leading up to lunch is a simple way to up your weight-loss game. [Men’s Health]

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Sit at a Desk All Day? Here’s How Much Exercise You Need, Study Suggests

As I type this, I am about to spend eight hours, more or less, in my desk chair. Previous studies have suggested that, given my job of choice — one that pretty much requires me to be glued to a computer chair — I should probably just accept the fact that sitting is slowly going to kill me. Yes: Even if I squeeze in a killer sweat session when I finally do get out of my chair.

But wait! There’s hope: As the Washington Post reports, a new study, published in The Lancet, found that us desk jockeys who sit in chairs for eight hours straight might have a chance of fighting death by sitting after all — as long as we squeeze in an hour of physical activity each day. Hallelujah!

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7 Science-Backed Reasons to Exercise That Have Zero to Do With Weight Loss

ferrantraite/iStock.com

ferrantraite/iStock.com

Sometimes, you need motivation aside from the promise of fitting into your skinny jeans to get your off your couch, outside of your pleasantly air-conditioned apartment, and exercising. If you’ve been at a loss to find any reasons (we’ve all been there), not to worry: We’ve got plenty for you.

We’ve rounded seven science-backed reasons to get off the couch and get moving—none of which have to do with weight loss—from the oh-so-wonderful runner’s high to the promise of a better night’s rest to improved skin to better sex and more. Read up, then get moving!  Read more »

The Checkup: The Body Part You Need to Start Properly Protecting From the Sun

• I’ll admit it, I am the biggest culprit when it comes to stocking up on cheap (but cute — I swear!) sunglasses so I don’t have to dish out a few hundos on a nice pair I will probably break or lose. But we should all reconsider making that investment. Not only are those cheap, dark-shaded sunglasses not protecting your eyes from UV light, but they could actually be doing you more harm than good. [SELF]

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