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Naps by duration: what you should know

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Do you have days when it feels like a nap is just what you need to restore your energy and boost your mood? While a quick rest can provide these benefits, napping for the right amount of time is key. Here’s what you should know.

Five to 10 minutes
The brief moment of relaxation offered by a nap of this duration can slightly improve your attention span. Even just closing your eyes and breathing deeply for a few minutes can help reduce stress.

10 to 20 minutes
This is widely considered the ideal amount of time for a nap. It’ll leave you feeling refreshed and more alert, which can improve your concentration and productivity. To ensure this nap is restorative, set an alarm to prevent you from sleeping for too long.

30 minutes
A nap of this duration can actually make you feel more tired. Your body has enough time to enter a deep sleep but not enough to complete a full sleep cycle. This causes sleep inertia, which can leave you feeling sluggish and groggy for up to an hour after you wake up.


60 minutes
Although an hour-long nap can leave you feeling drowsy when you wake up, it can also enhance your performance of memory-related tasks. Additionally, it may provide you with enough deep sleep to boost your capacity to learn.

90 minutes
Since you have time to complete a full sleep cycle, a nap of this duration is easier to wake up from than a 30- or 60-minute one. It promotes creativity, alertness, memory, and concentration. While not recommended for people with insomnia, a 90-minute nap can help make up for a short or sleepless night.

If you have trouble sleeping or often feel exhausted, speak with your doctor right away. This will help you avoid the onset of related health problems.

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The four-second workout

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Short, intense workouts aren’t a new fitness trend — high-intensity interval training (HIIT) has been performed and studied for decades, while the Tabata Protocol, a form of HIIT that alternates 20 seconds of all-out work with 10 seconds of rest, was developed in Japan in 1996. And according to CNET, the workouts can be very effective, too, burning more calories in less time while still providing all the great health benefits of exercise, including lower blood pressure and body fat.

But one researcher at the University of Texas has found that even tiny bursts of activity — as short as four seconds — can be beneficial. Edward F. Coyle, Ph.D., a professor in the kinesiology and health education department at the University of Texas at Austin, found that four-second sprints performed five times per hour helped burn fat and lower blood triglycerides, according to Healthline.

Study participants were asked to sit for eight hours. Five times per hour, they performed four-second sprints on a specialized exercise bike, which added up to a little under three minutes of physical activity for the entire eight hours.

Coyle’s study supports a simple idea that researchers and physicians have promoted for decades: Too much sitting is bad for you. According to the Mayo Clinic, individuals who sit for eight hours a day with no physical activity face an elevated risk of dying similar to the risks posed by smoking or obesity.



For people who sit at desks all day, physicians and researchers have a clear message: Get up and move around every so often, whether that’s four-second bursts or a long walk or run after you clock out. Your heart and body will thank you.

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October is National Liver Awareness Month

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Guard your liver: It’s big, but not very tough

It’s the largest organ you have. The liver is about the size of a football, but not nearly as tough. There’s another big difference: You can live without a football, but you’ll die without a liver.

Weighing three or more pounds and located behind your lower ribs on the right side, it’s the body’s refinery, says the American Liver Foundation. It filters out and disposes of harmful substances, and it converts nutrients into building blocks that the body can use.

The liver quietly goes about its many jobs with little attention from you. All it needs is your protection. Here are some ways to guard your liver.


* Don’t overwork it. Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight and obese can increase your risk of fatty liver disease.

* Be careful with chemicals, including pesticides, aerosol cleaners, and paint sprays. Avoid inhaling chemicals or letting them come into contact with your skin. Skin absorbs chemicals.

* Prevent liver diseases hepatitis A, B, and C. They can be spread through contaminated tattoos and other needles and shared razors, toothbrushes, or nail clippers.

* Practice safe sex. Unprotected sex or sex with multiple partners increases the risk for hepatitis B and C.

* Get vaccinated for hepatitis A and B if you are at risk.

* Stay away from street drugs such as heroin and cocaine, which seriously damage the liver.

* Use alcohol responsibly. Too much too often can lead to cirrhosis of the liver, which causes irreversible scarring and can be fatal.

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Health

7 nutritious treats for Halloween

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Along with carving a pumpkin and wearing a costume, eating candy is an integral part of celebrating Halloween. However, it’s a good idea to consume sweets in moderation to avoid getting stomach aches and cavities. Additionally, you might want to consider stocking up on treats for October 31 that provides a bit of nutrition without ruining the spirit of Halloween.

Here are a few tasty choices:

1. Dark chocolate
2. Flavored popcorn
3. Nutrition bars
4. Oatmeal cookies
5. Dried fruit
6. Salted seeds
7. Chocolate-covered nuts

These treats are a good source of nutrients, minerals, and fiber, and they’re sure to delight your family members and neighborhood trick-or-treaters.


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Minimum age for prediabetes screening drops

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The United States Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) has updated its recommendations for when physicians should start to screen patients for diabetes and prediabetes. According to a statement published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, USPSTF now recommends that physicians start to screen overweight and obese patients at age 35 instead of the previous recommendation of 40.

According to Medical Economics, earlier screening can help delay or prevent diabetes in adults whose screenings indicate prediabetes. Lifestyle changes like diet modification and increased physical activity have been shown to be effective in reversing prediabetes.

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Are your thumbs killing you?

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You might not think that you’re getting a workout when you flop down on the couch to text with a friend or scroll aimlessly through your social media accounts, but at least one part of your body might disagree.

“Texting thumb,” often formally diagnosed as de Quervain’s tenosynovitis, is a repetitive stress injury that results in inflammation in the tendons of your thumb, according to Houston Methodist.

When angry tendons rub in their narrow channel, the result is pain that begins at the base of the thumb, and in severe cases, can radiate up through the side of the wrist and to the lower arm. The pain usually occurs in the dominant hand.

The thumb is the most likely culprit, but other fingers aren’t safe from mobile device overuse — according to Healthline, “smartphone finger” might cause pain or stiffness at the base of the affected finger, clicking sounds when you move your pinky, stiff fingers in the morning and numbness at in your fingertips. Smartphone pinky or smartphone finger is often more common with larger devices, like our beloved iPads and Kindles.


If you’re experiencing texting thumb or smartphone finger, you can try a few things to see if the pain subsides.

* Take a break from your devices to see if your pain subsides.

* Hot and cold therapy can help. Try ice for inflammation or heat for stiffness.

* Over-the-counter pain relievers like Tylenol or Advil can relieve discomfort.

If your pain is especially persistent, you can try a splint or brace to keep those joints stable. But if the pain continues despite rest and remedies or if you experience recurring numbness, it’s time to call the doctor.

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Try resistance bands for strength

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Stronger, leaner, and healthier — according to the experts at the Mayo Clinic, regular strength training can provide all of those benefits. And if heading to the gym to hit the weights isn’t your speed, resistance bands and body weight exercises offer a portable, affordable option that you can do almost anywhere.

According to Harvard Medical School, resistance bands are a great addition to body weight exercises that can help you preserve and build lean muscle. Resistance band training can also help improve your balance, gait, and flexibility, and they’re user-friendly for even fitness novices, according to NBC News.
Resistance bands are available in various styles, including single lengths of stretchy elastic, closed loops, or rubber tubes with handles. You may want to invest in a few types of bands with varying levels of resistance — don’t worry, their compact size means that even several bands are easy to stow away.

Banded squat
Place a loop or mini-loop resistance band (a length tied in a circle also works) around your thighs just above your knees, and stand with your feet slightly more than hip-width apart. Slowly push your hips back into a seated position while bending your knees. When you reach a seated position and your knees are at a 90-degree angle, hold the position for a few seconds and then slowly move back into a standing position. Make sure to squeeze your glutes — these strong muscles provide the bulk of the power for this movement. Perform two to three sets of eight to 12 reps.

Banded lunge
With the band around your mid-to-lower thighs, just above your knees, take a big step forward and lower down until your back knee hovers just above the ground. Lift yourself back into a standing position by driving through the heel of your front leg. Perform two to three sets of eight to 12 reps on each side.


Banded chest punch
Loop the exercise band around your back and under your armpits. Hold an end or a handle in each hand by your shoulders. Slowly and deliberately, punch your right arm out on a slight diagonal in front of your body, before repeating with the other side. This counts as a single rep — perform two to three sets of eight to 12 reps.

Seated resistance band row
Sit on the floor with your legs straight in front of you, feet more than shoulder-width apart. Loop your resistance band (a band with handles is best for this exercise) and cross the handles in front of you to make an X shape. Pull the handles slowly and carefully into your ribs, making sure to sit up straight and let your back muscles do the work.

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King Cartoons

Front Royal
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Upcoming Events

Oct
28
Thu
10:00 am Senior Painting Class with Dottie @ Strokes of Creativity
Senior Painting Class with Dottie @ Strokes of Creativity
Oct 28 @ 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Senior Painting Class with Dottie @ Strokes of Creativity
Senior Painting Class with Dottie at Strokes of Creativity. Tickets: CLICK HERE Cost: $80 for 6 weeks Dates: Thursdays – Oct 21, Oct 28, Nov 4, Nov 11, Nov 18, Dec 4 Time: 10 am[...]
1:00 pm Art Class for 4th & 5th @ Strokes of Creativity
Art Class for 4th & 5th @ Strokes of Creativity
Oct 28 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Art Class for 4th & 5th @ Strokes of Creativity
This class is for Grades 4th and 5th. Perfect for home schoolers. Recommended ages: 9 and 10 years old Tickets: CLICK HERE Tickets are available through Square Up, or can be paid in person at[...]
7:00 pm Haunted Tunnel Auto Wash @ White Horse Auto Wash
Haunted Tunnel Auto Wash @ White Horse Auto Wash
Oct 28 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Haunted Tunnel Auto Wash @ White Horse Auto Wash
White Horse Auto Wash is excited for the first Haunted Tunnel at their new Front Royal location this year! Located next to Lowe’s at 214 Country Club Road, Front Royal, VA. The event will be[...]
Oct
29
Fri
9:00 am Volunteer Tree Planting @ Sky Meadows State Park
Volunteer Tree Planting @ Sky Meadows State Park
Oct 29 @ 9:00 am – 3:00 pm
Volunteer Tree Planting @ Sky Meadows State Park
Edmonds Lane Field: Join The Piedmont Environmental Council, Friends of the Rappahannock, Goose Creek Association, John Marshall Soil & Water Conservation District and We Plant Trees, for volunteer tree planting at Sky Meadows State Park![...]
6:00 pm Trunk or Treat @ Family Dollar Parking Lot
Trunk or Treat @ Family Dollar Parking Lot
Oct 29 @ 6:00 pm – Oct 30 @ 9:00 pm
Trunk or Treat @ Family Dollar Parking Lot
Non-profit organization Crown Vic Kiings & Queens, of Winchester, Virginia, is hosting our annual car club TRUNK OR TREAT, in Front Royal, on October 29th. The event is free but donations are greatly appreciated, as[...]
7:00 pm Haunted Tunnel Auto Wash @ White Horse Auto Wash
Haunted Tunnel Auto Wash @ White Horse Auto Wash
Oct 29 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Haunted Tunnel Auto Wash @ White Horse Auto Wash
White Horse Auto Wash is excited for the first Haunted Tunnel at their new Front Royal location this year! Located next to Lowe’s at 214 Country Club Road, Front Royal, VA. The event will be[...]
Oct
30
Sat
9:00 am Volunteer Tree Planting @ Sky Meadows State Park
Volunteer Tree Planting @ Sky Meadows State Park
Oct 30 @ 9:00 am – 3:00 pm
Volunteer Tree Planting @ Sky Meadows State Park
Edmonds Lane Field: Join The Piedmont Environmental Council, Friends of the Rappahannock, Goose Creek Association, John Marshall Soil & Water Conservation District and We Plant Trees, for volunteer tree planting at Sky Meadows State Park![...]
1:00 pm Fall Craft Festival @ Fort Valley Museum
Fall Craft Festival @ Fort Valley Museum
Oct 30 @ 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Fall Craft Festival @ Fort Valley Museum
Fort Valley Museum Fall Craft Festival – Annual Fundraiser October 30 & 31, 2021 | Saturday 1-4pm, Sunday 2-5pm Come by and support the Fort Valley Museum at our annual Fall Craft Festival (formerly “Christmas[...]
1:00 pm Feed the Homeless Trunk or Treat @ T-Bone's Bar & Grill
Feed the Homeless Trunk or Treat @ T-Bone's Bar & Grill
Oct 30 @ 1:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Feed the Homeless Trunk or Treat @ T-Bone's Bar & Grill
Non-profit organization Crown Vic Kiings & Queens, of Winchester, Virginia, is hosting our annual car club FEED THE HOMELESS/TRUNK OR TREAT on October 30th. The event is free but donations are greatly appreciated, as Crown[...]
7:00 pm Haunted Tunnel Auto Wash @ White Horse Auto Wash
Haunted Tunnel Auto Wash @ White Horse Auto Wash
Oct 30 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Haunted Tunnel Auto Wash @ White Horse Auto Wash
White Horse Auto Wash is excited for the first Haunted Tunnel at their new Front Royal location this year! Located next to Lowe’s at 214 Country Club Road, Front Royal, VA. The event will be[...]