|The easiest way to lose weight is to check it as airline baggage.
|Get a Flat Belly Without Diet or Exercise
Perfect your posture
"Straighten up," advises former "Biggest Loser" trainer Kim Lyons, and your figure will look
better. "When your posture is good, you're automatically engaging and toning your stomach
muscles." If you need to remind yourself to stand tall, she says, a few strategically placed
Post-it Notes should do the trick.
Turn to the "pros"
"Probiotics are 'good' bacteria that help your digestive system break down
food, preventing the gastrointestinal issues that can keep you from having a flat
stomach," explains nutritionist Jonny Bowden, Ph.D., author of The Most
Effective Natural Cures on Earth. To ensure your plumbing is working at
optimum capacity, Bowden suggests eating a daily serving of a probiotic-rich
food like yogurt (or drinking a glass of buttermilk), or taking a supplement
containing at least 50 milligrams of probiotics. (Look for versions that contain
the strains acidophilus and bifidobacterium, and are produced by reputable
vitamin companies, like Nature's Way.)
|Walk it off
Try to squeeze in a 30-minute walk daily, says Lyons. The simple boost in
metabolism will help you burn waistline fat more efficiently. And if you want to
work out, skip those gadgets that promise "miraculous abs in minutes":
A study from Kansas State University found most devices designed to
target abs (think infomercials) don't live up to their promises.
You'll see better results with traditional exercise.
|Give up gum
Because chewing forces you to swallow more puff-producing air, it can also keep
you from squeezing into your skinny jeans, explain researchers at the American
College of Gastroenterology. If you need to freshen your breath, you're better off
sucking on a mint.
Consider adding calcium D-glucarate (1,000 mg) and B-complex supplements to your regular
vitamin regime, recommends C.W. Randolph, M.D., author of From Belly Fat to Belly Flat. "Excess
estrogen causes the body to retain fat around the waist, but both supplements have been shown to
help you excrete the hormone, which can lead to a smaller middle."
A chuckle a day
Laughing is a quick way to tone the transverse abdominus, a
muscle that most forms of exercise don't isolate—and one that,
according to Lyons, "has a major effect on how flat your midriff
looks." Try to find at least 10 minutes' worth of giggle-fodder daily!
Keep those fluids coming! "Being dehydrated causes the body
to hoard water," says Lyons, which can lead you to carry up to
four excess pounds around your midsection. Try for six to eight
8-ounce glasses of water or other fluids daily.
Have a seat!
"Most people don't want to talk about it, but you really have to set aside a specific time each day
to use the bathroom," notes Judith Reichman, M.D., a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at
the University of California, Los Angeles. If you don't, it's too easy to give in to feeling rushed,
and ignore the urge to go." Once you've trained your brain to dismiss your body's signals, you
set the stage for bloat-inducing constipation.
Rather than scarfing down meals, make a point of chewing each bite at least 10 times
before swallowing. "The body has to work overtime to break down food in the stomach
and intestines, which can lead to major gas and indigestion," Dr. Reichman says.
Plus, when you eat fast, you're more prone to swallowing air, which can ratchet up your
risk of developing a potbelly.
Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.
"When you're frazzled, your body increases its production of steroids and stress
hormones, which negatively affect your digestive system, causing major constipation,"
says Dr. Reichman. And as if that weren't enough to leave you looking pouchy, stress
also amps up the production of cortisol, a "fight or flight" hormone that sends excess fat
directly to your midsection in its attempt to protect your vital organs. To minimize
tension, Dr. Reichman advises, "take 20 minutes a day to do something that truly
14. Keep an eyeglass screw in place. If your specs are a bit wobbly, tighten the screws
and top them with a dollop of polish.
15. Secure buttons. Apply a thin layer of polish to the center of a button to keep the
thread from coming loose.
16. Avoid rust stains in the bathroom. Coat the bottom of a shaving-cream can to fend
off rings on the ledge of the tub.
17. Seal an envelope. When a flap won't stay stuck, find closure with clear polish.
18. Extend the life of jewelry. Paint a thin coat onto a costume bauble to prevent it from
losing its luster.
Clear Nail Polish
|The many hidden talents (both new and tried-and-true) of inhabitants of your kitchen
1. Open jars with ease. When a small lid won't budge, wrap a rubber band around
it several times to give you a better grip.
2. Decorate Easter eggs. Arrange rubber bands in a pattern around hard-boiled
eggs, then dip them into dye. Remove the bands when the eggs are dry.
3. Bring order to your dishwasher. Tether stemware and other delicate, wobbly
items to the rack.
4. Wrap a gift. Use multiple colored rubber bands instead of ribbon to add
modern flair to a small present. (Particularly handy when you can't find the tape.)
5. Label meat. Are these burgers rare or well-done? They all look the same on the
outside. Identify just-off-the-grill meats with different-colored toothpicks and they
won't get mixed up.
6. Find the end of the roll. When you've finished using tape, wrap the end around a
toothpick so you can easily locate it the next time.
7. Glue beads and sequins. Use the sharp ends to apply teensy items to a craft
8. Sew a better button. Place a toothpick between the button and fabric so it
doesn't go on too tightly and end up tough to fasten.
9. Press a gadget's Reset button. What fits perfectly into that tiny hole? You
10. Clean up a cracked egg. Cover the mess with a handful of salt, then wipe up
11. Dust a wreath. Place a wreath of pinecones or faux evergreen in a paper bag
with a 1/4 cup of salt. Fold the top of the bag over and gently shake.
12. Remove tea stains. Sprinkle salt on a lemon peel, then rub it on a tea-stained
cup. (Arched pinky optional.)
13. Shine brass and copper. Make a paste of a few tablespoons of white vinegar
with equal parts salt and flour. Apply with a soft cloth, rinse, and dry.