Category Archives: Happy living

Why Smoking and Work Do Not Go Hand In Hand

Many people take pride in what they do each day at the office. They constantly want to improve and they may even define themselves by their role in the company. However, filling your body with coffee and making lists is not going to do the trick if you want to be successful.

If you want to do well at work, it is important to take small breaks throughout the day. They can clear your mind and help you get to know your co-workers. Smokers often enjoy taking what is known as a smoke break a time to have a cigarette and chat with other smokers. Often, these discussions revolve around work related tasks. So, it is not unusual to assume that these talks would be productive and ultimately benefit the company.

However, that could not be further from the truth. When you smoke, toxic fumes infiltrate your lungs. Those toxins keep accumulating as you smoke, hurting your health and well-being. Obviously, that is not good news for your productivity at work.

Missed Time

Free University of Amsterdam released a study indicating that smokers take quite a few more sick days than their coworkers. They averaged 11 more days total, which means that not only did they have a lot of make-up work to do, but they probably also felt more stressed in the office while trying to catch up on their piles of missed work. This stress can compromise an already weak immune system, leading to more sickness as a result. It is a vicious cycle.

Monetary Loss

If you are out of the office, your work just sits there and does not get done. A deadline might come and go. You may not be in the best frame of mind to come up with ideas or to get creative while working on a product. This affects your job performance, and ultimately, how much money your company makes. Also, if your company gives you healthcare benefits and you are sick often, that costs them a lot of money.

Time Loss

While smoke breaks do lead to social connections among employees, they are also a huge time loss for companies.  In addition, because two or more workers generally go out together, the time loss really adds up. While there is some work-related discussion, other conversations focus on home, families or other issues. Sometimes the talk turns to the cigarettes themselves. That does not have anything to do with the company or with work, so it is really just wasted time.

Negative Image

Smokers can make the company look bad. There are clients that think smoking is not professional. So, when they see a member of the company out on a smoke break, they may form a negative opinion of the company as a whole. That could mean a lost contract or deal, simply because there are employees standing around smoking. It may sound silly, but it happens all the time.

Since smoking is not good for either the employee or the employer, many companies are looking into what they can do about the issue. Simply asking the employee not to smoke generally does no good. In fact, it may infuriate the employee enough that he or she decides to move on to another position because they do not feel respected or valued.

Therefore, companies are starting to get a little more creative. Walmart, for example, educated their employees on how quitting could help them.

If you want to curb your smoking habit at the office, the following tips should help you do so.

Focus on other things rather than smoking. Know that you are healthier for having put down your cigarettes. Instead of going on a smoke break, take a walk around the office or do a few light stretches. If you have coworkers that are still smoking, do not associate with them while they are on their break. Watching them light up will just be too difficult for you, so make an effort to connect with them at other times of the day.

If you are intent on quitting, speak to some of your coworkers about doing the same. You can all be a support system for one another. You are much more likely to be successful if you have people to talk to about your journey. Remind yourself of how much money you are saving when you do not smoke. Treat yourself to a special meal or activity with your savings as a way of rewarding yourself for your commitment.

In the beginning, make sure you hang out in smoke-free areas when you are off from work. If you do not, the urge to smoke may just be too strong.

When a company is tobacco-free, everyone benefits. Cigarettes are a drain on your finances and your health. If you want to feel better, live longer and do better at your job, it is a good idea to stop smoking. If you are successful, you may find that you have a renewed passion for life and for your job. More energy and more enthusiasm means that you will be more productive, helping you ultimately advance in your career.

How Body Fats Can Keep You Healthy and Make You Sick

You must have some fat in your body or your cells do not work the way they are supposed to. However, if you do not eat a healthy diet, you do not have the correct amount of fat in your blood. This leads to health issues and concerns. The following information outlines what you need to know about fats in your bloodstream.

Some Fat is Good

You have probably heard a lot about fats, and it is safe to assume that none of it was good. You may have even been told by a doctor or other professional that you are eating too many fats. In addition, just the word itself has a negative connotation associated with it. As a result, many people think they simply cannot eat any fats at all if they want to be healthy. That is not the case, however, and it can be a dangerous assumption.

Lipids, which are fats, help make up your cells. They are crucial to the functioning of the body. Therefore, if you do not eat enough fat, you can get sick. Similarly, if you eat too much fat, you can also become sick. You have to find a balance between these two things. Therefore, it is important to learn about lipids and how they relate to the overall functioning of your body as well as disease.

Different Types of Cholesterol

You need to have cholesterol in your body. It helps to produce both bile acids, which aid in the digestion process, as well as hormones. Cholesterol is created in the small intestine and the liver. You can also get cholesterol from the food that you eat. Both the cholesterol that the body makes and the cholesterol that you consume help the levels in your body stay normal.

As cholesterol makes its way through the bloodstream, it has a partner in crime. It must travel with proteins; together the two create something known as a lipoprotein. These lipoproteins may either be high density or low density, depending on what they are made up of and what they do within the body.

Low-density lipoproteins take cholesterol to the tissues; this is not good. The cholesterol can build up in the arteries, leading to health concerns. High-density lipoproteins move the cholesterol from the tissues to the liver, which is much more desirable. After it gets to the liver, the cholesterol is set free and it is eventually changed into a bile acid. Therefore, the total cholesterol you have in your body is made up of both good and bad versions. Your overall number should be under 200 mg/dL, but you also have to consider how much of your cholesterol is good versus bad to figure out if you are likely to get sick or not.

Since the low-density lipoproteins are undesirable, they should be present in smaller numbers. Similarly, since high-density lipoproteins help your body, they should be present in higher numbers.

Fatty Triglycerides

While food is meant to be nourishment for the body, many people take pleasure in eating, particularly when it comes to foods that are not as healthy for them. Therefore, we tend to overeat, and we get more carbohydrates, starches, and fat than the body requires. This leads to weight gain, among other issues.

When there are too many of these components in the body, it takes the excess energy and puts it into storage. Carbohydrates and fats, in particular, are converted into triglycerides. Like cholesterol, triglycerides can be found as very low-density lipoproteins, so they move through the bloodstream and target tissues. Typically, they aim for adipose and muscle tissue.

Discover The Ten Best Ways To Boost Your Health

Often as humans, we try to make things complicated. If it is too simple we think there must be some hidden secret. But when it comes to health, most of the best advice really is straight forward and simple.

1.    Understand your weight and how it affects your health. It is estimated that around 30% of women and as many as 40% of men in England are heavier than their healthy weight. There are almost ten thousand deaths that are premature each year, and some evidence suggests that obesity cuts off up to a decade from your life expectancy.

2.    Salt and fatty foods should be reduced. Many of today’s chronic illnesses are due in part, to too much fat and salt in our daily diet. Diseases such as diabetes, heart trouble, and stroke are often associated with diets that have these excesses in them.

3.    Alcohol should be consumed only modestly or not at all. It is unknown to most that the consumption of excess alcohol is a leading factor in many ongoing health issues such as heart attacks and cancer, according to the NHS.

Men are 3 times more likely to suffer a stroke if they consume 3 or 4 units of alcohol each day. Those that are interested in more details can visit our section on alcohol consumption.

4.    It is important to exercise. Regardless of your weight, it is important to get physical activity. For those that are overweight, it can help reduce it to healthy levels. But even those with no weight issues will benefit from regular exercise. People of all ages and levels of conditioning will benefit. Even lite exercise done on a regular basis will reduce the risk of several common health problems. You can lessen your chance of stroke and heart attacks by as much as 50%.

5.    Control stress. In recent years close to half a million people living in the UK said their stress levels at work were so high they believed it was making them physically sick. 20% of visits to the doctor are related to stress-related psychological problems that are severe enough to warrant medical care.

This can lead to serious health related issues such as clinical depression, anxiety and of course high blood pressure. Check the other sections of our site for more advice on stress management.

6.    Eat more healthy foods like vegetables and fruit. You should be consuming several portions of vegetables and fruit each and every day. Getting the fiber and nutrition that comes from 5 or more portions of fruit and vegetables a day helps to keep your weight at healthy levels and reduces the chances of developing diabetes or having a stroke.

We have some tasty recipes that will make it easy to eat the necessary portions each day. Look for more on our site.

7.    Get more sleep and improve the quality of it. It is natural to sometimes have issues with sleep. Almost everyone runs into this problem sooner or later. Some estimates suggest that in the UK alone, as many as 33% of adults regularly suffer from lack of sleep or the sleep they get is low quality.

When you are not rested well enough, it can cause you problems at work and in personal relationships. These problems can in turn increase levels of stress. To get a good night, it starts with making habits of going to bed at the same time every night. Your body can learn and anticipate your schedule if you make it regularly.

8.    If you smoke, consider quitting. Even if you have been smoking for years, your health can have immediate benefits by quitting. In less than a half an hour, your breathing will improve. Soon after, your blood pressure will get better. Some say that your lungs will begin to start clearing within a day or two of quitting.

After several days of quitting you will start to breath better and you will begin to feel more energized. If you want to quit, but find it difficult, then you may want to ask your doctor about the many medical treatments available today.

9.    Make sure you do not have an STI. Certain types of sexually transmitted infections can go undetected for a long time before discovering you have something. Infections such as gonorrhea and chlamydia reduce a woman’s chance of becoming pregnant. These infections cannot be detected just by looking at someone. So if you have engaged in sex without protection, you should be tested.

These days it is easy to be tested and the earlier you find you have an STI, the better the chance of clearing it up before any major issues.

10.    Women should regularly check for lumps. A full one-third of people in England develops cancer during their lifetime. While cancer is more common in the elderly, it occurs with consistent frequency in those who are not yet old.

The earlier you find cancer the better chance you have of recovering from it and the less that will be required for recovery. It does not pay to delay a checkup. Paying attention to your body and overall health can help in detecting problems early. Try to notice any lumps or if a mole changes colors or if your energy suddenly reduces and you do not know why.