Red rose, red wine and red hearts – a study by the University of Rochester proved that there are also some psychological factors behind this colour code for Valentine’s Day. When shown photographs, men found women who were either wearing red or standing against a red background more desirable. The reverse proved to be true as well. Women perceived men wearing red as having a higher status as well. The simple reason behind this? The colour red is proven to make your heart beat faster.
300: That’s how much a human’s oxytocin level can rise after spending 30 minutes petting a dog.
Studies have shown it to be one of the most foolproof ways to lower stress levels in humans. Petting a dog or staring into their fond gaze helps boost oxytocin, a feel-good hormone in humans (and canines) and reduce cortisol (read: Stress inducer) levels.
OIL IN A DAY’S WORK
Essentials oils are known to help improve focus, reduce fatigue and create positive emotions in people. And one that offers the uplifting and stimulating properties of both orange and ginger – Abundance by Young Living – is just what the doctor ordered for the Lunar New Year. Start your day right by diffusing some in the morning; for the evening, add a few drops to your bath water with epsom salts to wash off the day’s stress.
Trying to cut sugar from your diet? Then, learn to sleep better. Studies have shown that those who made a conscious effort to improve their sleep habits and slept for longer had a natural drop of 10 g in their average daily sugar intake, compared to those who didn’t sleep enough or well. The reason for this is probably the fact that we crave sugar when we are tired – so every wink of sleep counts.
LIVER LOVE – Do’s and Do-Not’s
● Snack on raw vegetables like carrots and beets, especially at night, as they help cleanse the liver.
● Read the label, when buying processed foods. If you notice anything with a high sugar content, or with an imbalance of additives to compensate for the likes of “low-calorie” or “low- fat”, put them back where they were on the shelf.
● Add B-Complex and Vitamin C to your supplement intake. A diet rich in Omega 3 will also help optimise liver function.
● Keep hydrated. It is key for the liver to be able to perform the function of detoxification.
● Practise safe sex.
● Eat when you are tired or stressed. Binge-eating when the body is tired means that the liver does not get ample energy to perform its functions – and is unable to filter and destroy harmful bacteria and virus that may enter the system through food.
● Eat heavy meals before going to bed. Just like our skin, liver performs its main functions as we sleep. Fatty food will make it work overtime.
● Take too much painkillers – especially those with acetaminophen, as they can cause damage to the liver.
● Smoke or drink alcohol excessively.
TEXT: SANDHYA MAHADEVAN / ADDITIONAL REPORTING: BAUERSYNDICATION.COM.AU / PHOTOS: 123RF.COM