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LifeCycle Stories
How to Go Vegetarian (At Least More Often)

You know you should eat more vegetables, but -- let's face it -- you are never going to give up steaks and burgers. Besides, you may be convinced eating vegetarian-style is simply boring.Actually, trading your usual meat-centered dinners a couple of times a week for vegetarian fare may be far easier, and tastier, than you've imagined. You could even find you don't even miss those steaks and burgers after a while.What's more, going vegetarian for even part of the time will provide you with extra phytochemicals, fiber and other health-boosting components of plant-based meals. Still not convinced more veggie-centered and meatless meals are worth the effort? Consider these recent studies:Loma Linda University researchers have found the fruits and vegetables typically consumed in higher amounts in a vegetarian diet may dramatically decrease the risk of type 2 diabetes.Recent data from Harvard University researchers showed that replacing saturated fat-rich foods such as meat and full-fat dairy products with vegetable oils, nuts and seeds can reduce the risk of heart disease by almost 20%.Hundreds of studies have found links between meat consumption and ....

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Oh, My Aching Back!

Almost everyone has felt some dull, achy or sharp, stabbing back pain. But when the discomfort is intense -- and especially if it's chronic -- back pain can make concentrating on your work and any daily activities difficult. If you've found yourself saying, "Oh, my aching back!" lately, you are definitely not alone. National Institutes of Health (NIH) statistics show low back pain is the top cause of pain reported by Americans and according to the American Academy of Pain Medicine, more than 26 million people in the U.S. between the ages of 20 and 64 experience back pain frequently."Back pain is an extremely common issue. In fact, studies suggest 85 to 90% of people will have some problematic back pain in their lifetime," says W. Jeremy Beckworth, MD, assistant professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Emory University School of Medicine and a physiatrist at the Emory Spine Center in Atlanta.However, if you are a back pain sufferer, don't let those stats get you down. Instead, concentrate on this good news: the odds are greatly in your favor that ....

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Putting Sleep Problems to Bed

It's hard to be your best, professionally and personally, if you don't get enough sleep. In fact, a lack of sleep isn't just something that can make you feel and look tired. It can have serious consequences for your quality of life and your health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 50 to 70 million U.S. adults have a sleep disorder -- and sleep insufficiency is now recognized as a public health problem linked to car crashes and occupational errors. What's more, CDC statistics show that not getting enough sleep regularly raises your risk for chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, depression and even obesity. Researchers have noted changes in body metabolism and an increase in carbohydrate cravings are closely linked to poor sleep patterns.Lack of sleep may even play a role in the development of some cancers. For example, a study published in the journal Cancer by researchers from University Hospitals Case Medical Center and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine found people who got less than six hours of sleep at night had ....

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