Health & Fitness

By Marni James

Nail 911:

In a world as busy as ours, who has the time to sit around waiting for nails to dry at the salon? Sure, I’ve been know to sit there for more than 30 minutes with the fear that any less time under the dryer would yield a chipped nail, but it turns out that my odd habit can actually be dangerous. Even if you only last for 5 minutes, if you are using a nail dryer that uses UV rays to dry your nails, you are exposing yourself to an increased risk of hand/finger skin cancer.

Some salons utilize the fan dryers, which have the optional UV light that comes on at the end of the cycle and others use the dyers that emit UV rays the entire time, and both are equally dangerous. Dr. Neal Schultz, founder of http://www.DermTV.com , recently shared some words of wisdom regarding this issue that completely shocked me and so I had to share. You’ve undoubtedly heard many, many times how dangerous it is to expose yourself to UV rays without protection, but there are now studies that back up the claim about nail dryers and link the UV driers to the rise in hand/finger skin cancer.

Unless the manicurist plans on lathering your hands with SPF during that hand massage, Dr. Schultz recommends steering clear of the UV dryers. Dr. Schultz reports unusual numbers of skin cancer on the fingers for frequent users of UV nail dryers, meaning you should avoid them until controlled studies can demonstrate safe parameters for their use (if they even exist). So, the next time you’re provided with the UV drying option, like when it comes to tanning beds, just say no. I assure you your manicure will still dry (it just takes time!) and in years to come you will not have to worry about any types of hand cancer, or hands that look old and wrinkled.

To learn more about this topic or Dr. Neal Schultz, please visit DermTV.com.

Sculpted Summer Abs, Sadie Style:

With bikini season around the corner it’s time to shape up and tone that midsection. YogaWorks instructor Sadie Nardini guides you through three quick poses that will flatten your abs and bring out that hot summer beach body.

Yoga targets not only your superficial abdominals, but the deeper core muscles that are often neglected in traditional abdominal excises. Sadie’s unique poses will reach all six abdominal muscles, working to effectively transform and firm the midsection.

1/2 CROW PLANK:
From Downward Dog, lift your right leg into the air. Bend the knee, and sweep it forward to your outer, upper right arm. Squeeze and hold as you round your back, firing the inner thighs, hip flexors and front abdominals.

Bonus: This is an excellent arm and shoulder-sculpting pose too!

Beginners: Place the ball of your right foot on the floor, and/or the back knee down, but still engage the leg in and belly up.
Hold for 5 breaths, then return to Downward Dog pose and switch sides.

FLYING BUTTRESS:
From Downward Dog, lift your right leg up behind you. Exhale, bend the knee and bring it into your chest as you round your back sky-high. From your core, spin onto your outer left foot, and step your right foot halfway up the mat in front of you. Lift your right arm to the sky and keep the hips lifting for a super side-waist sculpting pose.

Bonus: Play with lifting the bent leg’s foot off the floor, and then ground that one, and try to lift the straight leg for an extra-credit inner thigh workout!

Beginners: Keep both hands down or place your left knee down on the floor for added support, but maintain the lift of your hips and waist!

Hold for 5 breaths, then return to Downward Dog and repeat on the other side. After your last Flying Buttress, come into Dog Pose.

DIVING WARRIOR:
From Downward Dog, lift your right leg while you exhale and draw the knee into the chest, rounding the back and holding the hips high. Using your core strength, step the right foot to the right thumb. Ground your back foot down, toes facing slightly forward. Exhale, and use your belly to pull yourself upright with your palms together at your chest. Inhale, curl inside your front knee and lengthen your chest. Exhale, pull up over your legs, twisting towards your back leg as your arms straighten and reach back into your side bend.

Repeat this wavelike motion 5-10 times for a full all-abdominal workout in one move.

Bonus: This pose transforms your legs, thighs and gluts along with your abs.

Beginners: Do this move with your back heel up and knee on the floor, and/or only wave as low or high as you need to keep your back comfortable.

After your Diving Warrior, return to Downward Dog, then repeat on your left side.

Sadie Nardini’s teaching style is rooted in the importance of strengthening one’s core while continuing to offer her students a full-body experience that is challenging yet simple to execute. Sadie currently teaches nationally and maintains her home at YogaWorks SoHo. For more info on Sadie’s classes and for a full Yogaworks class schedule, visit http://www.yogaworks.com

Pert-fect Multitasking Product:

Pert Plus recently launched three 3-in-1 products, perfect to take along with you to the gym this summer! The 3-in-1 products are a shampoo, conditioner and body wash, which are all great for quick showers at the gym or anytime you are on the go and need a multi-tasking product. Pert Plus 3-in-1 will eliminate the amount of products you have to carry around and with 3 uses in one product, you’ll be saving money and time, buying and shopping for fewer products! Per Plus 3-in-1 is available in three formulas:

• Moisturizing: Cleans and moisturizes hair and skin without overdrying. Contains
vitamins A & E plus Aloe Vera to balance moisture levels.
• Daily Care: Cleans and softens hair and skin, gentle for everyday family use.
• Refreshing (for men): Revitalizes hair and skin and is specially formulated to provide a cool, tingling sensation and has an energizing minty fragrance.

I love the clean, spring-like smell of Pert Plus 3-in-1 Moisturizing and found that it left my hair and skin soft, clean and manageable after a recent morning run. All the Pert Plus 3-in-1 products are available at drugstores nationwide and visit pertplus.com to learn more.

Originally published June 2010
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