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Archive for October, 2018

The witching hour began around 5 p.m. each day. I had two hands and three babies: twin 18-month-old boys and an infant daughter, all of whom were perpetually in the throes of a crisis, fall, or unpredictable bowel movement. My husband would be coming home from a new job and a three-hour round-trip commute, and my stepdaughter would be rolling in from middle school with teenage needs. They were always walking into a war zone.

I didn’t need to chitchat and be asked, “How was your day?” I didn’t need “I love you” either, or even “Thanks for all you’re doing.” I needed the person to walk through the door, roll up their sleeves, survey the situation, and pitch in. I needed help, stat.

So how could I get my fellow soldiers up to speed quickly and help me where the crisis was most intense? I needed them to be ready, and I needed to communicate the plan. So I asked my husband and stepdaughter to ask me the following as soon as they walked through the door: “How can I help?”

Four small, powerful words. They moved us immediately into collaboration, into a place of teamwork. It was the fastest way to integrate them into the moment and get the help I needed. They were no longer observers of crisis; they were EMTs, and we were moving to the next step, side by side.

Soldiers, emergency room doctors, and anyone else who deals in crisis has a shorthand for “I’m here; put me to work where you need me most.” I had spent years working in restaurants, and I knew what it felt like to be deep in the weeds—and more importantly, how to help a fellow chef out of the weeds. I had regularly appeared on live TV, and I had seen network crews do a form of this as well.

Now that I was in caregiver mode, I was always responding to what everyone else needed—or anticipating the needs of those who couldn’t speak. What I needed was someone to help me.

As soon as my husband and stepdaughter started using the mantra (and following up on the request that was made), that pile of dishes in the sink, that dirty diaper that needed to be changed, that hungry child who wanted a snack—suddenly, those to-do items were crossed off my list, lightening my mental load. I had less weight to carry.

In the spring of 2017, a cartoonist named Emma wrote an illustrated story about the “mental load,” the implicit project management work that lands in the lap of (typically female) primary caregivers. This resonated globally, and soon the phrase “mental load” was plastered across social media, everywhere.

“How can I help?” doesn’t solve the mental load, but it acknowledges the role of the caregiver as team leader and the other adults in the home as part of the team. Someone’s gotta quarterback the logistics of children. But the same person can’t be the quarterback and the receiver. “How can I help?” enables you to quarterback and creates a domestic culture of receivers ready for the pass, prepared to complete the play.

Image: Sidney Morgan

It’s never too early to start delegating work to others. Kelli DeFlora, owner of Montclair B.A.B.Y., a birth, advocacy, breastfeeding, and yoga center in Montclair, New Jersey, recommends having a list on the fridge as soon as the baby is born. “There’s always laundry to do, dishes to wash, and meals to make. When well-intentioned friends and relatives come through the door, you can say that the best way they can help is to take an item from the list and cross it off when it’s done,” says DeFlora.

“I see too many parents these days who try to do everything for their child, and disable them in the process,” says Peter Della Bella, M.D., a psychiatrist and New York University child psychiatry professor. Dr. Della Bella supports the “How can I help?” approach to family problem-solving. “Younger children, especially, are put in the position of being active participants, having to reflect, and having to work with someone to identify and solve problems. Arguably, problem-solving skills are the best skills parents can engender in a child.”

If you’d like to implement “How can I help?” in your home, try these techniques to make it part of your family fabric:

  1. Connect with your partner purposefully about roles in the home. Clarify who is taking primary responsibility for home care, childcare, finances, food, etc. Get clear about who is the lead on what.
  2. Share this article with your partner. Confirm that you’re both interested in using this technique.
  3. Have each project lead identify the trouble spots (or witching hours) in their role. When do they feel like they’re getting pulled into the weeds? Are there specific times of day, of the month, of the year, when the responsibility starts to get stressful?
  4. Role model “How can I help?” Now that you know where your partner needs help, say the words. Role model this behavior for your children if they are old enough. Find opportunities to use it on a daily basis: navigating out of traffic, spilled milk, sharing the laundry folding, etc. “How can I help?” can fast be applied in almost any tense scenario or moment of conflict.
  5. If help isn’t coming, ask for it directly. Say, “I need your help.” Pause for positive response, connect for a second, then delegate. Have a follow-up, and give positive feedback if it worked.

Can you imagine your partner, family, and friends walking through the door during the witching hour, asking what needs to be done, and then doing it? On the regular?

It’s the greatest phrase since “I love you,” and I say greater because the “I love you” is implied. And to it is an added “I got your back,” “We’re in this together,” and of course, “This is our family.”

Source: https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/why-saying-i-love-you-is-not-enough

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Think your flow looks different this month? Here’s what its hue could mean.

Your period may show up every month and annoy you with the cramps, bloating, and fatigue that come along with it, but it deserves a little respect. Your monthly flow can actually provide a lot of insight into your overall health. For instance, if you’re struggling with irregular periods, that’s a sign you may be dealing with a thyroid problem, polycystic ovary syndrome, or a hormone imbalance, or that you’re underweight. And if it doesn’t show up at all, well, you might want to try a pregnancy test.

The color of your period blood may also provide some insights into what else is going on inside your body. It can come in a rainbow of shades from pink and whitish to bright red and even dark brown. Here, we explore what each period blood color might mean—and let you know when it’s time to call your doctor.

If it’s pinkish…

pinkish
MAXIM IBRAGIMOV

You may have low estrogen levels, especially if the pink blood is accompanied by a lighter-than-usual flow, or if you’re an avid runner, says New York-based functional medicine nurse practitioner Margaret Romero. Studies have found that excessive exercise can lower estrogen levels, which can subsequently mess with your period, sometimes causing it to disappear altogether. (It’s not uncommon for female professional athletes to stop ovulating.)

While this may not seem like a big deal (who hasn’t fantasized about never having to deal with a period at least once or twice?), low estrogen levels can increase your risk of osteoporosis if left untreated. So if you’ve recently started training for a marathon, have started working out for the first time in your life, or have upped the intensity of your workouts and you notice that your periods are suddenly lighter in color and flow or less frequent, talk to your doctor.

Romero says other potential culprits of a pinkish flow can include poor nutrition, PCOS, or perimenopause, which is when your ovaries start producing less estrogen in preparation for menopause (generally, it occurs around four to five years before menopause).

If it’s watery-looking…

watery
NOTTOMANV1/SHUTTERSTOCK

You may have a nutritional deficiency. Alyssa Dweck, MD, assistant clinical professor at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, says that a white-ish, diluted flow can be a symptom of severe anemia, especially if you notice your period getting lighter and lighter when it would ordinarily get a bit heavier. If, after monitoring your period for two or three cycles, you’re worried that this could be the case, talk to your doctor about getting tested for nutritional deficiencies.

To make matters a little more confusing, an iron deficiency might instead be caused by heavy periods. (A Finnish study that examined 236 women with heavy periods found that 27% were iron deficient and 60% were severely anemic.) If you bleed through pads or tampons in less than an hour, wake up at night to change your pads or tampons several times, or are always tired, it can’t hurt to get your iron levels checked.

If it’s dark brown…

dark brown
ALWAYSLOVED AFILM/SHUTTERSTOCK

You may have older bits of uterine lining and blood that are just now making their way out of your body. But don’t panic: This is normal. “We’re not sure why this happens in all cases, but sometimes the blood is sitting around for a while and comes out particularly slowly,” Dr. Dweck says. “It has a lot of time to oxidize, which is why it can look brown or almost black.”

Everyone will shed her uterine lining at a different rate (like snowflakes, each period is unique), but for the most part, seeing some dark brown blood at the beginning of your period or toward the end of it is nothing to worry about.

If it’s a thick jam-colored red with large clots…

jam colored
IRA SHPILLER/SHUTTERSTOCK

You may have low progesterone levels and high estrogen levels. While some clotting is normal, says Dr. Dweck, clots the size of a quarter or larger can indicate a serious hormonal imbalance. Romero recommends reducing your consumption of dairy, soy, and sugar and seeing if that makes a difference.

Fibroids are another possibility. They’re most often benign, but they can be painful, so if you suspect they’re behind your heavy, clot-filled periods, ask your doctor for an ultrasound.

If it’s a mix of gray and red…

mix gray red
KAGAI19927/SHUTTERSTOCK

You may have an infection. You’ll probably also experience a really “foul, necrotic stench,” Dr. Dweck says. Get tested so you can get the right treatment.

Women who miscarry sometimes notice gray chunks of tissue that look like “liver,” Dr. Dweck says, so if you think there’s a possibility that you’re pregnant or having a miscarriage, call your doctor ASAP.

If it’s a bright, cranberry red…

cranberry
QUAYSIDE/SHUTTERSTOCK

You may have a healthy, regular period. Again, everybody’s “normal” will look different, but generally speaking, a consistently bright red flow that looks a little like cherry Kool-Aid is a signal that everything is working as it should.

Source: https://www.prevention.com/health/a20503433/color-of-your-period-blood-and-health/

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There are some days you just cannot resist the urge to indulge when someone offers you a free doughnut in the office. It might feel like your impulsive choices are arbitrary, but if you pay attention, there may actually be a clear pattern for which days you can’t control the cravings. According to new research, your self-control plummets the day after a sleepless night. Why? Stress.

In a new study published in the journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, researchers asked 211 college undergraduates to complete an online survey every night for 30 days. In it, they were asked about things like how much they slept the night before, their alcohol use, the current day’s activities and events (for example, if they were having a conflict with a friend), and how stressful their day had been. The researchers also specifically tracked how much difficulty the participants were experiencing with self-control by having them either agree or disagree with three statements: “Right now my mind feels unfocused,” “Right now my mental energy is running low,” and “Right now I am having a hard time controlling my urges.”

“We found that after a night of shorter sleep than usual, participants reported having greater self-control difficulties than usual,” Garrett Hisler, a research assistant at Iowa State University and one of the study authors, explained to mindbodygreen.

Part of this effect was because sleep loss made the day more stressful than usual, which then increased self-control difficulties. “Thus, sleep loss both directly made self-control more difficult but also indirectly made self-control more difficult by increasing stress,” Hisler explained.

Basically, in addition to sleeplessness itself weakening your willpower, your self-control is further compromised because of exhaustion-induced stress, making it even harder to say no to your vice of choice. When you’re perceiving more stress, self-control feels way more difficult, leading you to make a variety of bad choices.

Just being aware of the relationship between sleep, stress, and self-control is beneficial and may encourage you to think your way through a self-control obstacle. However, the best thing you can do to avoid temptation altogether is get the right amount of sleep every night, which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates is “at least seven hours.”

“If you are on a diet and trying to resist the temptation of sugary foods, making sure you are getting enough sleep can be one way to reduce stress and increase the likelihood that you successfully resist their allure,” Hisler said.

If you are having trouble sleeping, there are several things you can do to combat insomnia, according to experts. Try shutting down any blue light sources—your phone, iPad, computer, the like—an hour before bed, keeping your thermostat between 62 and 80 degrees, and avoiding caffeine after noon. You’ll start to feel your impulse control kicking back into gear in no time.

Source: https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/why-you-just-cant-say-no-to-sweets

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From essentials oils to candles to bath products, lavender’s soothing qualities have become a fixture in the a variety of stress-zapping wellness products. However, some people aren’t convinced that the violet-colored flower can actually help promote calm. Well, here’s some scientific evidence for all you non-believers: According to a new study done on mice, the aroma of lavender can actually provide stress relief.

“Many people take the effects of ‘odor’ with a grain of salt,” study author Hideki Kashiwadani, a physiologist and neuroscientist at Kagoshima University in Japan, said in an email to the New York Times. “But among the stories, some are true based on science.”

In the study, which was published on October 23 in Frontiers in Behavioral Neurosciencescientists enlisted the help of several mice with healthy noses. They had each mouse inhale linalool—a naturally occurring alcohol in lavender that gives the flower its unique scent. They compared them with mice injected with linalool and those on benzodiazepines. What the scientists found was that the scent alone—not its absorption into the blood—had a seriously relaxing effect on the mice’s brain.

Kashiwadani says that linalool’s calming effect is the result of the activation of specific neurotransmitter receptors in the brain via the specialized sensory cells called olfactory neurons. The most amazing thing about it is scientists found that inhaling lavender had a similar effect on the brain as taking benzodiazepines such as Valium. While this type of drugs can cause dizziness or light headedness, mice that inhaled lavender suffered no side effects.

While more studies need to be conducted (ideally on humans), he believes that lavender will be used clinically in the near future. For example, it can be used before surgery to help alleviate preoperative stress. Until that time comes, there’s no reason not to infuse a little lavender into your life.

Here are a few easy ways to do it:

Invest in essential oil

Lavender essential oil is budget-friendly and just a dab on your wrist can keep you in relaxation mode all day long. You can also use an essential oil diffuser to infuse the scent throughout your home.

Add it to your bath

Lavender oil, salts or bubble bath are an easy way to add a little relaxation to your bath time routine.

Try a lavender-infused cleaning product

There are lots of cleaning products that incorporate lavender into their scent. Mrs. Meyers has an entire collection of lavender-infused household cleaners, ranging from multi-purpose cleaners to laundry detergent.

Hang a fragrant wreath

Infuse some relaxation and a dash of color into your home life by hanging a lavender flower wreath on your bedroom door.

Make lavender lemonade or tea

Prepare a lavender syrup by heating lavender buds and sugar together in a small saucepan. Allow the sugar to dissolve and form into a syrup. Remove it from the heat. Using a sieve, filter out the lavender buds. Add a tablespoon of the lavender syrup to your iced tea with some fresh lemon for a cooling and relaxing beverage. You can also brew some lavender tea by brewing lavender buds in a sachet or tea ball. Just make sure to inhale before every sip!

Stash lavender sachets everywhere

Lavender sachets–bags filled with lavender leaves—are easy to make and inexpensive. Put them next to your bed, in your underwear drawers or even in your purse, and enjoy the relaxing benefits of linalool wherever you are.

Source: https://www.prevention.com/health/a24109574/lavender-for-anxiety/

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With the seasons changing, you may be faced with a decision—to take or not take the antibiotic your doctor is recommending. Antibiotics can be necessary to treat some bacterial infections, but taking them causes many to think, “Oh no! My gut!” because of previous research that links antibiotic use with throwing our bacterial composition out of whack. New research is allowing us to breathe a little easier, indicating that antibiotics might not be as destructive to gut health as previously thought.

In a new study, scientists examined the effects of short-term intensive antibiotic use on the gut microbiota, and while antibiotics can deplete our gut of beneficial bacteria, it appears as though the body has the ability to replenish itself to a certain extent.

In the study, three different types of antibiotics were given to young men over the course of four days, and this depleted the gut of almost all beneficial gut bacteria. The participants were monitored over a six-month period, and the gut did recover most of the gut bacteria after six months, but the men were missing nine beneficial gut bacteria species. On top of that, new detrimental bacteria strains were detected in the mix.

While this is generally good news, the concern remains that multiple antibiotic treatments over the course of a lifetime could permanently eliminate beneficial bacteria in the gut, altering the diversity in the gut microbiota permanently. This is important to consider as the health of our gut microbiota plays a major role in things like our metabolic and cardiovascular health.

If you do have to take antibiotics, there are ways you can help your body recover. Functional medicine doctor Mark Hyman, M.D., recommends eating a low-carb diet and taking prebiotics and probiotics.

Prebiotics are considered a soluble fiber and can be found naturally in onions and sweet potatoes. For more probiotics, try incorporating more pineapple, tempeh, or miso into your day-to-day. Multi-strain probiotics can also be taken in capsule form.

As mbg expert and gut specialist Vincent M. Pedre, M.D., points out, incorporating a mix of the two is essential for gut health. As prebiotics feed the good bacteria, probiotics defend against bad bacteria and parasites. When the two are taken together, you can be sure you are on the road to better gut health.

So, when the time comes and you need to take antibiotics—and fingers crossed you stay well—rest assured knowing your body is doing what it can to recover, but it can’t hurt to help it along.

Source: https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/antibiotic-use-could-decrease-the-diversity-of-our-gut-microbiota

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We all love to unwind at the end of the day. Sometimes that’s a great bout of yoga or high-intensity training, and sometimes it’s a glass of wine or a favorite cocktail. Everything in moderation, right?

Or not? Have you ever wondered what impact (if any) alcohol has on your hormones? And just how much is too much? Is any amount “safe”? What is alcohol doing inside our bodies? And what does moderate consumption even mean?

To answer those questions, let’s take it one step at a time.

Alcohol consumption can increase estrogen—but it’s not the same for everyone.

According to clinical studies, moderate alcohol consumption can vary with life stages. What you consume at age 20 may not be the same as what you consume at age 40—and what you drink will affect your hormones really differently as well. As a woman ages, her hormones fluctuate; therefore, less alcohol is needed to have larger hormonal effects over time. For a woman in her 40s or 50s, even “moderate” amounts of alcohol can affect the hormonal system.

Drinking alcohol can cause a rise in estrogen and a decrease in progesterone in premenopausal women. Some studies even suggest that menopause was delayed by moderate alcohol consumption, since “alcohol consumption was significantly correlated with estrogen levels.” Though binge drinking (five or more drinks in one day) is the most detrimental, in terms of hormonal disruption and other health problems, this study suggests that moderate alcohol consumption needs further analysis to determine its health impact.

Alcohol consumption can decrease testosterone—but it depends how much you drink.

According to a study by the Testosterone Centers of Texas, “alcohol is the enemy of testosterone.” Testosterone is important for both men and women (although men have much more)! It’s well-known as the hormone for sex drive and libido, but it is a key player in muscle formation, bone mass, fat distribution, and brain health. Low testosterone (caused by alcohol or something else) in both men and women can result in brain fog, fatigue, irritability, lower muscle mass, and lower motivation.

The Testosterone Centers study goes on to cite that the decrease in testosterone is in direct relation to the amount of alcohol consumed, which poses the question: How much is too much?

In this particular study, the findings suggest that drinking two to three beers a day caused a “slight” reduction in testosterone for men and none for women, a good sign that moderate drinking doesn’t have that huge of an impact. The way in which alcohol affects hormone levels is related to the chemicals alcohol contains. Beer and wine contain chemicals that can increase estrogen, thereby lowering testosterone.

Heavy drinking (more than three drinks a day) is the real culprit for all kinds of health maladies in both men and women: weight gain, lowered testosterone levels in men, and increased testosterone levels in women. Both sexes are affected in terms of fertility. Studies have shown that men who drink in excess suffer from both fertility and “abnormally low testosterone.”

How to balance drinking with a healthy lifestyle.

Though most studies seem to suggest moderate alcohol intake may not cause any health issues in men and women, I’ve found in my years as a practitioner that “moderate” can mean very different things to different people.

The best solution? Consult with your health care provider to:

  • Determine a baseline for your health.
  • Talk to (and trust) your doctor to let her or him know your accurate alcohol intake on a weekly basis.
  • Follow-up, on a regular basis, about how that intake may be or may not be affecting your health.

The bottom line: What’s moderate and appropriate for you might not be the same as what’s moderate and appropriate for me—especially when it comes to hormone balance.

Source: https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/is-drinking-alcohol-bad-for-hormone-balance

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The Juul contains more nicotine than other e-cigarettes on the market.

With a sleek design, fun flavors, and plenty of posts on social media—more than 240,000 posts tagged as #juul on Instagram, to be exact—it’s easy to see why teens are attracted to Juul. The e-cigarettes are so popular that in less than three years on the market, Juul has grown to represent more than half of the e-cigarette market share, Nielsen data show.

But while users may think Juul poses no risks to their lungs, experts caution that it may open the gates to smoking traditional cigarettes. “While there’s been a significant drop in youth smoking over the last decade, the use of other tobacco products like e-cigarettes, including Juul, in this age group continues to climb,” says Humberto Choi, MD, a pulmonologist at the Cleveland Clinic. “We worry that young people who use e-cigarettes may be more likely to start smoking tobacco.”

In fact, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently issued more than 1,300 warning letters and fines to retailers who illegally sold Juul, as well as other e-cigarettes, to minors. “We see clear signs that youth use of electronic cigarettes has reached an epidemic proportion,” FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb, MD, said in a statement.

But are e-cigarettes just as dangerous as those we associate with lung cancer? Here’s everything you need to know about Juuling and how it could impact your health.

What is a Juul, exactly?

The Juul vaping system in Washington, DC.
GETTY IMAGESTHE WASHINGTON POST

Juul has two parts and looks a lot like a USB drive. The body has a lithium-ion polymer battery, a temperature regulator, and sensors to read the charge level and to sense inhalation. The pod (which attaches to the body) contains an atomizer, e-liquid, and the mouthpiece.

Like other e-cigarettes, the Juul heats up this e-liquid—which contains nicotine salts, propylene glycol, glycerine, benzoic acid, and flavoring—to create an aerosol. The salts are used to “help satisfy smokers when transitioning from cigarettes,” the official Juul website states, because they deliver a hit of nicotine in a way much like how a cigarette does.

Additionally, the concentration of nicotine is much more potent than other e-liquids on the market. A pod of liquid reportedly has as much nicotine as a pack of cigarettes—and delivers that nicotine 1.25 to 2.7 times faster than other e-cigarettes. However, most 15- to 24-year-olds don’t know that Juul pods always contain nicotine, researchers noted in a 2018 study published in Tobacco Control.

Are there any Juul side effects?

Because the devices are easy to hide and produce less vapor, “you can sit in a classroom, hold it in your hand, blow the vapor up your sleeve, and use these products very intensely,” explains Robin Koval, CEO and president of Truth Initiative, a non-profit public health organization dedicated to stopping the use of tobacco.

What’s more, nicotine is incredibly addictive, so those who start with e-cigs may eventually start smoking regular cigarettes, which research overwhelmingly finds is destructive to the body, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

But of the young people who know about Juul, almost half think it’s “a lot” or “a little” less harmful than cigarettes, while only a third think it’s “much” or “slightly more” addictive than cigarettes, according to the Tobacco Control study.

Aside from addiction, the long-term side effects of using Juul are unknown at this time since it’s still a new product and there is limited data on e-cigarette use overall.

“We know that in the short-term, e-cigarettes can cause inflammation in the airways and in the lungs,” Dr. Choi says. “And nicotine is linked to multiple health problems, including increased heart rate, constriction of the blood vessels—which could lead to heart disease—peptic ulcers, erectile dysfunction, premature birth, and sudden infant death syndrome,” Dr. Choi says.

So is Juuling bad for you?

Although Juul is thought to be safer or healthier than cigarettes, there is no long-term evidence to support this, Dr. Choi says. “We know that there are short-term health problems associated with e-cigarettes that are typically caused by the heat in the vapor, acute inflammation caused by the chemicals in the liquid, or nicotine toxicity,” he explains.

Some experts, including Koval, believe Juul may be less harmful than cigarettes, “but remember that regular cigarettes are one of the more deadly products out there,” she adds.

Can Juul cause lung cancer?

Juul doesn’t produce tar, carbon monoxide, or other chemicals associated with combustible tobacco and the risk of lung cancer. However, it’s still unclear if Juul poses any cancer risk.

“We know that the liquids used in these devices do contain known substances associated with lung cancer, such as formaldehyde,” Dr. Choi says. Only time and more research will reveal the exact consequences the current teen generation will face from smoking Juul and other e-cigs.

We do know, however, that the younger a person begins smoking electronic cigarettes, the more likely they are to smoke traditional cigarettes—the leading cause of lung cancer in the U.S. “If this is accelerated by the popularity of Juul, that’s a dangerous thing,” Koval says.

Source: https://www.prevention.com/health/a24074749/what-is-juuling/

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In 2014, while Chasisty Bee was pregnant, her supervisors at the Verizon warehouse in Memphis refused to grant her request for light duty. One day, she collapsed at work. She later miscarried.

MEMPHIS — If you are a Verizon customer on the East Coast, odds are good that your cellphone or tablet arrived by way of a beige, windowless warehouse near Tennessee’s border with Mississippi.

Inside, hundreds of workers, many of them women, lift and drag boxes weighing up to 45 pounds, filled with iPhones and other gadgets. There is no air-conditioning on the floor of the warehouse, which is owned and operated by a contractor. Temperatures there can rise past 100 degrees. Workers often faint, according to interviews with 20 current and former employees.

One evening in January 2014, after eight hours of lifting, Erica Hayes ran to the bathroom. Blood drenched her jeans.

She was 23 and in the second trimester of her first pregnancy. She had spent much of the week hoisting the warehouse’s largest boxes from one conveyor belt to the next. Ever since she learned she was pregnant, she had been begging her supervisor to let her work with lighter boxes, she said in an interview. She said her boss repeatedly said no.

She fainted on her way out of the bathroom that day. The baby growing inside of her, the one she had secretly hoped was a girl, was gone.

“It was the worst thing I have ever experienced in my life,” Ms. Hayes said.

Three other women in the warehouse also had miscarriages in 2014, when it was owned by a contractor called New Breed Logistics. Later that year, a larger company, XPO Logistics, bought New Breed and the warehouse. The problems continued. Another woman miscarried there this summer. Then, in August, Ceeadria Walker did, too.

The women had all asked for light duty. Three said they brought in doctors’ notes recommending less taxing workloads and shorter shifts. They said supervisors disregarded the letters.

Pregnancy discrimination is widespread in corporate America. Some employers deny expecting mothers promotions or pay raises; others fire them before they can take maternity leave. But for women who work in physically demanding jobs, pregnancy discrimination often can come with even higher stakes.

The New York Times reviewed thousands of pages of court and other public records involving workers who said they had suffered miscarriages, gone into premature labor or, in one case, had a stillborn baby after their employers rejected their pleas for assistance — a break from flipping heavy mattresses, lugging large boxes and pushing loaded carts.

They worked at a hospital, a post office, an airport, a grocery store, a prison, a fire department, a restaurant, a pharmaceutical company and several hotels.

But refusing to accommodate pregnant women is often completely legal. Under federal law, companies don’t necessarily have to adjust pregnant women’s jobs, even when lighter work is available and their doctors send letters urging a reprieve.

The Pregnancy Discrimination Act is the only federal law aimed at protecting expecting mothers at work. It is four paragraphs long and 40 years old. It says that a company has to accommodate pregnant workers’ requests only if it is already doing so for other employees who are “similar in their ability or inability to work.”

That means that companies that do not give anyone a break have no obligation to do so for pregnant women. Employees say that is how the warehouse’s current owner, XPO Logistics, operates.

For example, last October, a 58-year-old woman died of cardiac arrest on the warehouse floor after complaining to colleagues that she felt sick, according to a police report and current and former XPO employees. In Facebook posts at the time and in recent interviews, employees said supervisors told them to keep working as the woman lay dead.

If companies “treat their nonpregnant employees terribly, they have every right to treat their pregnant employees terribly as well,” said Representative Jerrold Nadler, Democrat of New York, who has pushed for stronger federal protections for expecting mothers.

In every congressional session since 2012, a group of lawmakers has introduced a bill that would do for pregnant women what the Americans With Disabilities Act does for disabled people: require employers to accommodate those whose health depends on it. The legislation has never had a hearing.

“We are deeply troubled by these allegations,” said a Verizon spokesman, Rich Young. “We have no tolerance — zero tolerance — for this sort of alleged behavior.” He said the company opened an internal investigation in response to The Times’s inquiry. “None of these allegations are consistent with our values or the expectations and demands of contractors that work directly for us or have any affiliation with us.”

Erin Kurtz, an XPO spokeswoman, said: “We’re surprised by the allegations of conduct that either predate XPO’s acquisition of the Memphis facility or weren’t reported to management after we acquired it in 2014.” She said the allegations “are unsubstantiated, filled with inaccuracies and do not reflect the way in which our Memphis facility operates.” The company also disputed that the warehouse was windowless, noting that there were a number of interior windows.

Ms. Kurtz said XPO prioritized the safety of its workers, had “no tolerance for any type of discriminatory behavior” and has enhanced pay and benefits for employees in recent years.

Those improvements didn’t help Ceeadria Walker when she got pregnant. The 19-year-old said she gave her XPO supervisor a doctor’s letter from OB/GYN Centers of Memphis saying she should not lift more than 15 pounds. She said she asked to be assigned to an area with lighter items. Ms. Walker said her supervisor regularly sent her to a conveyor belt line where she had to lift more than she was supposed to. She miscarried the day after spending her shift handling those heavier boxes.

A pregnant Ceeadria Walker continued lifting heavy boxes at XPO after being denied a reprieve. The day after a grueling shift in August, she miscarried.

“We’re saddened that Ms. Walker had a miscarriage over the summer,” Ms. Kurtz said. “We’re investigating these newly raised claims.”

THE RISKS OF LIFTING

For most women, it is safe to work while pregnant.

But there is “a slight to modest increased risk of miscarriage” for women who do extensive lifting in their jobs, according to guidelines published this year by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. The recommendations are intended to inform doctors about best practices.

Two decades of medical research have established a link between physically demanding work and fetal death, though there is debate about how strong the connection is. Part of the difficulty in measuring the relationship, researchers say, is that it’s impossible to design a study that isolates the impact of heavy lifting versus other risk factors, like pre-existing conditions.

Another possibility, doctors said, is that extreme physical exertion diverts blood from a woman’s womb to her muscles.

The potential dangers are greatest for women whose pregnancies are already classified as high risk, which is why doctors often advise that they be given easier tasks.

“When employers ignore these medical recommendations, they are potentially jeopardizing patients’ health,” said Rebecca Jackson, the chief of obstetrics and gynecology at San Francisco General Hospital. “It’s especially bothersome to me that this is occurring for women in strenuous jobs, given that they are at the most risk of injuring themselves or the pregnancy.”

Warehouses are among the fastest growing workplaces in the country, employing more than a million Americans. Retailers, competing against the likes of Amazon, demand high speed at low costs.

On Memphis’s east side, these are often the highest-paying jobs available for people without college degrees. Drawn by the proximity to rail lines and highways, some of the country’s largest companies have set up distribution centers here. One dispatches Nike shoes. Another handles Disney toys. And a short drive from Graceland, Verizon has its hub.

XPO runs all of those warehouses. The Verizon facility, which XPO took over when it bought New Breed Logistics in 2014, is the only one where The Times interviewed workers about pregnancy discrimination. Shifts there can last 12 hours. Workers get 30 minutes for lunch and as many as three other 15-minute breaks.

XPO’s 2017 employee handbook warns that taking unapproved breaks, arriving to work late or leaving early can result in “immediate termination,” unless the reasons for the departures are “legally protected.” The Pregnancy Discrimination Act does not guarantee women such protections.

A JOB ON THE LINE

It was the fall of 2013, and Erica Hayes was convinced that she was having a girl. She daydreamed about the clothes she would buy and made a list of favorite names. Her friend was pregnant with a boy, and they talked about raising their children together.

At first, Ms. Hayes was processing individual shipments to Verizon customers — one phone, one charger, onto the next. Then, a crush of holiday orders hit the warehouse in December. She said that her boss began dispatching her to the area of the warehouse that handled bulk shipments, often destined for Verizon stores, where the warehouse was struggling to keep up. She often spent up to 12 hours a day lifting huge boxes, some with 20 iPads and 20 accessories.

She said she could have handled paperwork or stayed in the section of the warehouse devoted to small shipments. But she said her supervisor kept ordering her to work with the largest boxes. Ms. Hayes’s mother said that her daughter talked to her about the rejected requests at the time.

Ms. Hayes said she began to bleed regularly at work. She sometimes left early to go to the hospital. Each time, she said, her supervisor wrote her up. As the demerits accumulated, she stopped leaving. Instead, she bled through four maxi pads a day.

“My job was on the line,” she said. At the end of a long shift in January 2014, she felt blood gushing into her jeans.

A co-worker fetched her a black peacoat to wrap around her waist to cover the spreading stain. Another grabbed plastic bags to line the leather driver’s seat of her 2003 Hyundai. Ms. Hayes fainted before she could get to the car. An ambulance took her to the hospital.

A couple of weeks later, she said, her supervisor handed her a $300 invoice for the cost of the ambulance ride. (Ms. Hayes, who still works at the warehouse and is hoping for a promotion, said she never paid the bill.)

That spring, two more women had miscarriages at the warehouse. Both said that their supervisors rejected their requests to pack lighter boxes.

One of the women, who still works at the warehouse, declined to be identified for fear of losing her job.

The other was Tasha Murrell. She already had two boys and was praying for a girl. She planned to name the baby Dallas, after the Cowboys, her favorite football team. Ms. Murrell said that she told her boss she was pregnant and asked to leave work early one day that spring because the lifting had become painful.

While employed at the Verizon warehouse in 2014, Tasha Murrell, pregnant at the time, told a supervisor she was in pain and asked to leave early; the manager said no. Ms. Murrell miscarried the next day.

Ms. Murrell’s husband keeps the ultrasound from the pregnancy she lost in his wallet. It has become deeply creased from being in his wallet.

Her supervisor told her to get an abortion, according to a discrimination complaint she filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in April 2018. Ms. Murrell woke up the next morning to find her mattress stained with blood. Her husband drove her to the emergency room, where doctors told her she had miscarried. Ms. Murrell left the job last year and is now an organizer with the Teamsters, which is trying to organize a union at the warehouse.

Ms. Hayes and Ms. Murrell had the same supervisor: Amela Bukvic.Through her lawyer, Ms. Bukvic denied telling anyone to get an abortion. “I would never make such a horrible statement to anyone, especially an employee under my supervision,” she said.

Ms. Bukvic said that she made sure that the pregnant women whom she managed had workloads that were not excessive. She said she never denied help to the pregnant employees. “If they had any work restrictions, I always took all steps to make sure their work duties never exceeded those restrictions,” she said.

A few months later, in September 2014, it happened to another woman.

Chasisty Bee, 33, was four months pregnant. Hoping for a girl, she bought a newborn’s blanket from Burlington Coat Factory.

Ms. Bee had miscarried in 2008 while working at the Verizon warehouse. This time, she said, she brought in a doctor’s note recommending that she work shorter shifts, be given a chair and light duty. Supervisors rejected her requests. One afternoon, after almost 14 hours on her feet, she started feeling dizzy and crumpled to the warehouse floor. Her physician told her that she had miscarried.

After Ms. Bee got pregnant again in 2015, she found a new job. “I couldn’t bear to lose another child,” she said. The next February, she gave birth to a healthy girl.

Ms. Kurtz, the XPO spokeswoman, said: “The false and misleading allegations directed at our Memphis facility are fueled by the Teamsters and are part of their ongoing, but unsuccessful, attempts at organizing.”

STALLED MOMENTUM

A bipartisan group of lawmakers has proposed upgrading the 1978 Pregnancy Discrimination Act. The bill would compel companies to accommodate pregnant women — for example, by offering extra breaks or the option of light duty — as long as it does not impose an “undue hardship” on their business. That is the same language used in the Americans With Disabilities Act.

Women “shouldn’t have to choose between keeping a doctor appointment or their job,” said Senator Dean Heller, Republican of Nevada, one of 125 co-sponsors of the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act in the House and Senate.

In 2015, it looked as if the bill might gain traction. The Supreme Court had just ruled in favor of Peggy Young, a UPS driver who was denied light duty after getting pregnant. Pregnancy discrimination was suddenly grabbing headlines.

But some Republicans, including Senator Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, where the XPO warehouse is, viewed that bill as adding a confusing new layer of regulations, according to Senate aides. Mr. Alexander, who is chairman of the Senate committee on health and labor, co-sponsored a competing bill. It expanded protections for pregnant women in some cases. But it still allowed employers to deny accommodations if they weren’t being provided to other workers in similar situations.

“It was a useful mechanism in order to divert some of the momentum that was building,” said Emily Martin of the National Women’s Law Center, an advocacy group focused on women’s rights.

Both bills stalled.

Outside Washington, there have been fewer roadblocks. At least 23 states have passed laws that are stronger than current federal protections (Tennessee is not among them). In Utah, Delaware, Colorado and New York, Republicans led the charge. In Nebraska, an anti-abortion Democrat pushed the measure.

“Women have lost their children due to the lack of robust pregnancy protections in the workplace,” said Catherine Glenn Foster, the president of Americans United for Life, an anti-abortion group. “Anyone who can’t get behind this or uses it as a political game — it’s a travesty.”

XPO Logistics has had run-ins with regulators over labor issues. Last year, the state of California awarded four truck drivers $855,000 in back wages after XPO misclassified them as independent contractors.

‘I WATCHED HER DIE’

The problems extend beyond the warehouse floor — to hotels, restaurants, fire stations and stores.

At the Albertsons grocery store in Atascadero, Calif., Reyna Garcia had one of the toughest jobs. She pushed 200-pound carts, dragged sacks of cat litter and climbed 10-foot ladders to stock goods.

Ms. Garcia got pregnant in July 2012, found out she was having a girl and decided to name the baby Jade.

Ms. Garcia told her boss that her pregnancy was high risk — she had previously given birth prematurely. She presented a doctor’s note saying she should not lift more than 15 pounds. The boss ignored the recommendation, according to a lawsuit she filed against Albertsons in federal court in Los Angeles.

“She was feeling like she wasn’t getting any response from her supervisor,” her doctor, Mareeni Stanislaus, said in an interview. She said the restrictions were “even more important” because Ms. Garcia had a high-risk pregnancy. Heavy lifting can prompt smooth muscles like the uterus to contract, potentially inducing preterm labor, Dr. Stanislaus said.

The regular twisting and hoisting caused intense pain, but Ms. Garcia needed the paycheck and the health insurance. She requested any other position — in the Albertsons bakery or at the meat counter or as a fruit cutter or in the pharmacy or at the customer service desk.

Her boss turned her down, according to the lawsuit, which included corroborating statements from her colleagues.

Her doctors sent two more notes. “She should avoid prolonged standing without a break and should avoid excessive bending and reaching and balancing,” Dr. Stanislaus wrote. Copies of the letters were included in the suit.

About three weeks later, in the middle of her shift, Ms. Garcia began feeling “pelvic pressure,” according to her lawsuit. She asked her boss for permission to leave early; he gave her a long list of tasks that she needed to finish first.

Ms. Garcia ended up working overtime. By the time she got home, she could feel her amniotic sac bulging between her legs. It felt “like a balloon coming out of me,” she said in a sworn statement. She went to the emergency room. She could feel something scratching from inside; her doctor told her it was the baby’s fingernails. She was 20 weeks pregnant.

Five days later, Ms. Garcia gave birth to Jade. The baby lived less than 10 minutes.

“My husband and I watched her die,” Ms. Garcia said in her statement. “It was the most painful thing I have ever experienced.”

In 2014, Albertsons settled Ms. Garcia’s lawsuit for an undisclosed amount; the deal prohibited her from speaking publicly about what happened. “The company has a policy against pregnancy discrimination, and we accommodate employees with pregnancy-related disabilities in accordance with state and federal law,” said Christine Wilcox, an Albertsons spokeswoman.

Ms. Garcia’s boss demoted her when she returned to work.

“I lost my baby for this job,” Ms. Garcia said, according to her lawsuit. “Why didn’t you give me help when I was pregnant and asked for it?”

HARD TO BREATHE

Workers at the Memphis warehouse thought conditions might improve when XPO Logistics acquired New Breed in September 2014.

At the time, XPO and its chief executive, Bradley S. Jacobs, were on a buying spree. His strategy was simple: slash expenses and deliver quick profits. Today XPO, based in Greenwich, Conn., has a market value of $12 billion.

The company has had multiple run-ins with regulators. In one instance, the California Labor Commissioner’s Office last year awarded four XPO truck drivers a total of $855,000 after finding that the company had misclassified them as independent contractors.

In Memphis, XPO’s ownership changed the warehouse, but not the way workers had hoped. Over the next couple of years, pressure on employees intensified and working conditions deteriorated, according to the 20 current and former employees. Supervisors began demanding that they pack 120 boxes an hour instead of 60. Some bosses penalized employees for spending too much time in the bathroom or on breaks.

Plaques marking her years of service at the warehouse hang in Chasisty Bee’s home. She left the company after getting pregnant in 2015. After two previous miscarriages while there, “I couldn’t bear to lose another child,” she said.

A spokeswoman for XPO Logistics, which processes orders for Verizon, said the allegations made by pregnant workers were “unsubstantiated, filled with inaccuracies and do not reflect the way in which our Memphis facility operates.”

Summer temperatures inside the warehouse regularly exceeded 100 degrees, the current and former employees said. It was so hot and humid that workers sometimes found it hard to breathe.

Every week from June through September 2017, at least one worker collapsed on the warehouse floor, the employees said. Supervisors took to wheeling the sick workers to the break room, where they sometimes received an ice pop.

On the morning of Oct. 17, 2017, Linda Neal crashed to the warehouse floor, dead of cardiac arrest.

Ms. Neal, 58, had suffered from heart problems. She previously had complained to her son, Dean Turner, that XPO supervisors would not let her leave early when she was feeling unwell, Mr. Turner said in an interview. That day, she had told managers that she was short of breath and asked for an extra break, but her supervisor rejected the request, according to Lakeisha Nelson, who witnessed the exchange and still works there. When Mr. Turner arrived at the warehouse, he said, three of his mother’s colleagues told him the same thing.

Managers told workers to keep moving boxes as her body lay on the floor, according to four employees who were at the warehouse that day, as well as contemporaneous Facebook posts.

Ms. Kurtz, the XPO spokeswoman, said the company did allow workers to leave for the day after Ms. Neal died. She added that the Teamsters “continue to shamefully exploit the passing of our colleague through the spreading of false information” in their effort to organize at the warehouse.

That same month, Ceeadria Walker joined XPO. The pay was decent, about $12 an hour, an upgrade from her last job at a car-parts warehouse. At first, she didn’t mind the frequent 12-hour shifts. But she learned she was pregnant in June 2018 and started feeling nauseated and dizzy at the end of the long days.

Ms. Walker said she gave her supervisor a doctor’s note saying she should reduce the number of hours on her feet to avoid hurting herself or endangering her pregnancy. “They looked at it like it was nothing,” she said.

There were days when XPO let her work in the “pit,” dealing with the paperwork for orders, but she said she spent most of July on the conveyor-belt line hoisting 45-pound boxes.

Ms. Walker toyed with leaving. But, she said, “I couldn’t just quit my job.” She was near the end of her first trimester and needed money. She planned to name the baby, her first child, after her boyfriend — Octavia for a girl, Octavius for a boy.

By the end of her shift on Aug. 4, Ms. Walker said she had handled hundreds of Verizon boxes. When she woke up bleeding at 6 a.m. the next day, her mother drove her to the doctor.

Two days later, Ms. Walker spoke with The Times. She was distraught. “This was going to be my first.”

Source: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/10/21/business/pregnancy-discrimination-miscarriages.html

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Whether it’s due to hormonal fluctuations, changes in the seasons, shifts in the microbiome, or a concerted effort to snack less and maintain a healthier weight, we all go through periods of time when we’re hungry—all. the. time.

And it can be an internal debate: Should you give in or not? It’s never a good idea to restrict yourself, mostly because it can end up leading to bingeing. But it can also be hard to see what, exactly, is leading to this insatiable hunger. Why don’t you feel satisfied?

Diets don’t typically work, and ultimately, there are better ways to curb your appetite—especially your cravings for sugar and carbohydrates—and maintain your happy weight. The trick? Eating nutrient-dense foods that send signals to your brain that you are satisfied.

So if you’ve already eaten a healthy meal and you’re still wanting to raid the pantry, try one or a few of these 10 tips:

1. Eat more fish.

Fish is loaded with high-quality protein and omega-3 fatty acids, both of which increase feelings of fullness and satiety. Some studieseven suggest that the protein in fish has one of the strongest effects on satiety compared to all other proteins. Worried about sustainability? These are the healthiest fish for you and the planet.

2. Enjoy other proteins.

Studies show that adding a high-quality protein to your meal improves satiety. My favorite protein choices are fish (of course!), lean meats, and eggs. This is especially relevant for your first meal of the day. According to science, eating eggs and a meat protein for breakfast will make you feel more satiated for the whole day.

3. Fill up with grains.

Foods that are high in fiber are also helpful in improving satisfaction levels while decreasing hunger. Quinoa is a great source of protein and is high in fiber. Oats and buckwheat, which have also been shown to improve satiety, are two other great options.

Image: Cameron Whitman

4. Eat more greens.

According to at least one study, eating a good amount of vegetables (like a salad) prior to a meal can increase satiety and lead to reduced food intake. Green plants like spinach are rich in thylakoids that reduce hunger, increase satiety, and reduce cravings. This is a great excuse to start your meal with Chrissy Teigen’s dreamy fall salad recipe.

5. Munch on legumes.

Legumes, which include lentils, beans, green beans, peas (and snap peas), chickpeas, and peanuts, are a great source of protein and loaded with fiber. A large systematic review(meaning a study that looks at all previous studies on the topic) done in 2014 showed that eating foods like these contributes to satiety.

6. Add a variety of nuts.

If you’re standing there staring at your snack drawer, try reaching for a handful of nuts. Nuts like walnuts and almonds have a high satiety value, likely due to their high content of protein and healthy fats. Almonds improve satiety, while pine nuts have also been shown to work as an appetite suppressant.

7. Feed yourself healthy fats.

If can be tempting to avoid fats if you’re trying to maintain your weight, but adding fats like avocado, coconut products, sunflower oil, palm kernel oil, safflower oil, extra-virgin olive oil, sesame oil, and the omega-3 oils that you can get from fish will help you feel more full and satisfied—while also boosting your metabolism and energy. Adding avocado to a meal, for instance, was found to significantly improve satiety for a three- to five-hour period. A good general rule is to not skimp on fats; just make sure you’re eating the healthiest ones possible.

8. Enjoy a little fruit.

Fruits like watermelon, oranges, blueberries, apples, and rhubarb are high in fiber and are loaded with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and often water, making them a good choice when you’re looking to enhance satiety. Whole fruit is better than fruit juices, as the latter are primarily sugar and cause a higher insulin spike and less satiety.

9. Use a small plate.

This one might seem a little bit old-school, but if you’re struggling with perpetual hunger, try using a smaller plate and filling it up to the max. When you do this, your brain feels like food is plentiful. In fact, a 2005 study showed that we apparently count calories with our eyes, not our stomachs.

10. Eat mindfully.

You’ve heard this before, but I’m here to tell you that turning off the TV and eating mindfully is a scientifically backed way to reduce feelings of hunger. Take your time eating. Enjoy the aromas, the colors on your plate, the flavors in your mouth, and the texture as you chew. Chew slowly and many times. Savor the experience. Studieseven show that mindful eating may help individuals overcome compulsive eating and promote healthier eating behaviors.

Source: https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/how-to-decrease-appetite-naturally

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As parents, your child is going to look to you for direction: What should they value, and how should they behave? Research claims materialism has reached an alarming high in today’s teens, but materialism isn’t something you’re born with or that is embedded in anyone’s DNA. Materialism is a behavior adopted when someone’s main focus is getting what they want and rarely pausing to appreciate the things they already have. In other words, it’s up to us to shift our own focus off material goods to what truly matters in life—like love and generosity.

According to a new study published in the Journal of Positive Psychology, the secret to raising a child who isn’t materialistic is to instill a sense of gratitude in them from the get-go.

For their research, a team of experts recruited over 900 adolescents between the ages of 11 and 17 to perform a series of experiments. In the first, 870 participants completed an online survey comprised of a list of statements like “When I grow up, the more money I have, the happier I’ll be,” and “It’s easy to think of things to be thankful for.” Participants were asked to read each statement and determine whether or not they agreed or disagreed with the sentiment. This allowed the researchers to a) evaluate just how much value each participant placed on money/materialistic goods, and b) to gauge how grateful they were for the people and possessions in their lives. In the end, the more gratitude a child expressed, the less materialistic they proved to be.

In another experiment, 61 adolescents completed the same questionnaire before being split into two groups: The control group was asked to keep a basic daily journal tracking their day’s activities, while the intervention group was encouraged to “record who and what they were thankful for each day.” After two weeks of logging their days, each participant was gifted $10 with the option to either keep it all or anonymously donate some or all of their earnings to charity. The researchers found that participants who’d practiced gratitude through journaling were more generous with their dollars than those in the control group.

“Our findings show that it is possible to reduce materialism among young consumers, as well as one of its most common negative consequences (nongenerosity) using a simple strategy—fostering gratitude for the things and people in their lives,” Lan Nguyen Chaplin, a University of Illinois at Chicago marketing professor and co-author of the study, writes in the paper.

In this particular study, having children keep a gratitude journal proved to be effective—though notably, of those asked to keep a more basic journal, a mere 17 percent wrote gratefulness statements without the prompting. So if you’re going to encourage your child to journal, make sure to specifically encourage them to write gratitude statements.

There are also countless other ways to practice gratitude if writing isn’t your or your child’s forte. For example, California psychiatrist Dr. Monisha Vasa says one of the best ways to teach your kids about gratitude is to engage in random acts of kindness in front of them.

“Allow children to witness you modeling being helpful and kind to others in small or big ways,” she tells mbg. “Children will often replicate our behavior. Noticing and participating in acts of kindness as a family allows for more connection and positive experiences, which we can all be grateful for.”

Verbal cues of gratitude are also one of the easiest ways to spread and encourage appreciation for others and all the little blessings life has to offer. Amy McCready, author of The “Me, Me, Me” Epidemic,tells mbg things like calling out the silver linings in tough situations, saying thank you when your child is being helpful, and taking time at the dinner table to list things you’re grateful for that day will ultimately lead to gratitude being a part of your child’s attitude every day.

Lastly, remember that children learn from your example, so it’s important that not only are you encouraging your little ones or teenagers to cultivate gratitude for things they already possess and the people who love and support them, but you should also be doing so in a way that shows you practice what you preach.

Source: https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/how-to-make-sure-your-child-doesnt-become-too-materialistic

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