Hey, it's still me, Adriana

Well hello! This here is my new coaching business logo designed by the talented Yocelyn Riojas. But it's still me, Adriana, with your Friday wellness-and-more newsletter. How are you?

I never met my fiancé's mother...

Ashwin's mother, Shyamala, died from a sudden heart attack when she was still in her 50s. They didn't see it coming. It's only recently that we've become aware that the signs of heart disease are different for women. I can't help thinking that with greater awareness her death could have been prevented--and she would still be in our lives. 

That's why heart disease awareness for women matters to me. So I was grateful to be invited to the American Heart Association and Morgan Stanley's Go Red for Women breakfast, especially since Laila Ali was the featured guest. Yes, that Laila Ali, the four-time undefeated champion boxer who does half a dozen other things now and has a new cookbook out, Food for Life.
But back to the heart of the matter--heart disease is the #1 killer of women and it needs to be on your radar. Here are some basics:
  • Know your numbers: Make sure you're getting your annual well-woman visit and finding out your cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood sugar. 
  • Know the signs of heart attack for women, including nausea and jaw pain. Sometimes women mistake them for acid reflux or symptoms of the flu.
  • With menopause your good cholesterol levels can decrease and your bad cholesterol levels can rise.
  • Limit sugar. We used to link heart disease with fat, but now we're learning it's linked more strongly with high sugar intake
Please take your heart health seriously. To learn more check out  
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More magnesium?

January seemed to last 478 days but in fact February 2 marks only the midpoint of winter. I feel like telling February THANKS WE'RE GOOD WE'LL PICK IT UP FROM MARCH INSTEAD. 

But that's not an option so let's make sure we've got our winter survival kit in order: Get your daily vitamin D and B12, sleep as much as you goddamn want, don't be so hard on yourself, get your flu shot if you haven't already, and make sure you're getting enough magnesium.

Magnesium will help you sleep better, recover from workouts, and it can lower your risk for depression (hello, winter blues). It also contributes to a healthy insulin levels. The recommended daily amount is 400mg, but the average American doesn't eat enough mag-rich foods (dark leafy greens and seeds) to get there, so that's why we supplement.

Unfortunately magnesium supplements can give some people gastrointestinal issues. So now we have magnesium creams and oils (you can make magnesium oil by dissolving one part magnesium flakes in one part water). And people are going EXTRA with the stuff, taking it every way they can, like it's got super powers. 

Alas, the research so far doesn't show strong support that magnesium will find its way into your bloodstream if you apply it to your skin. And it's more that not having enough is the problem.You don't need extra--that's just going to send you running for the loo. So if you're taking a daily oral mineral supplement with magnesium and calcium (I like Mary Ruth Organics) with food that should be fine for most of us. 


Confidence vs. courage, charcoal, and more

This week I kept seeing this report that most women say they felt most confident about their appearance at the age of 33. Wha-a-a-a-t? I don't know about you, but at 33 I was a bundle of insecurities.

What is confidence, anyway? I'd like to contrast that with something I heard writer Dani Shapiro say recently: “Courage is facing your fears and doing it anyway. Confidence can be this overrated mask for insecurity.” So I've been trying to focus more on daily acts of courage and less on trying to feel confident about my looks or anything else.

I can't remember who posted this essay, How to Look Good at Forty and Overthrow Your Government on Facebook but thank you and YES.

Activated charcoal became a thing a couple years ago but people are still talking about it as a detox superfood. Guys, no. It's charcoal. It's burnt stuff. Let Dr. Gunther explain to you why activated charcoal is not your new favorite supplement. Also: You have a liver and it does its job of detoxing just fine. 

Between us, I did enjoy turning my tongue black with Morgenstern's coconut ash cream a couple years ago.

On a more serious note, I loved this essay Carolyn Ali wrote about how keeping her husband's depression a secret affected them both. It's such a tricky issue, deciding how much to reveal about your own health issues, let alone mental issues, and especially the mental health issues of your family members. In her essay you'll see how Ali decided which part of the story was hers to tell.


Okay then, excellent

Well, that's enough from me today. Enjoy the weekend and keep warm and cozy!

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