Tag Archives: calories

Health & Beauty 106

1 Jan


I am finally back after a  4 1/2 month hiatus.  I have spent the last semester teaching seventh and eighth graders science, and boy what an experience!  I actually had a blast and became attached to my great students.  I can definitely say that I was privileged to be their teacher and role model.  It is so gratifying to know that I possibly touched their life in a positive way!

Student teaching was hectic because I had to work at the same time in order to keep up with my $500 a month staunchly health insurance bill as well as, other bills as I tend to refer to as, faithful junk mail.  I can definitely say it was tiring, but those sixteen weeks flew by so fast, I couldn’t keep up; I never knew what day it was.

There must have been a full moon on the one day during this time that I was at work because I had three different women ask me the same question.  It was as if though they had a meeting prior to their appointments to discuss this poignant query, but couldn’t concur who’d do the asking.  So, here is the distressing question:  “Is it true that I should not wash my hair everyday?  Someone told me it was bad to wash my hair everyday, so how often do I wash it?”   Literally, three women in a row.  Really, there was a full moon out that day.

Well, here is your answer.  YES, it is safe to wash your hair everyday.  I mean, c’mon…..after I sweat profusely like a pig at the gym, and I am NOT going to wash my hair.  I have one word for that; GROSS.  No, washing your hair everyday will neither ruin your hair nor dry it out.  That is what conditioners are for; to nourish and bring your hair back to tip top shape, and that is what hair products are for:  to dirty up hair for better manipulation while styling.

It is also not bad if you wash your hair every other day, or every couple days.  It completely depends on your hair type and the type of activity you are doing.  For example, those with dry, brittle and curly hair like mine can get away with not washing for 2-3 days and those with over active sebaceous glands may have to wash everyday. Now for those who wish NOT to wash everyday, corn starch, baby powder, loose make up powder, and waterless shampoos (currently the biggest trend) can be put into the scalp to absorb any excess oil or grease.  Just make sure to blend the “white powder” well to avoid gray looking hair.  The bottom line is, your hair needs to be washed as you see fit.


I never thought I’d be battling comedones in my adult age; comedones are otherwise known as zits.  I swear I turned 35 and those pesky little suckers were getting out of control to the point I finally made an appointment to the dermatologist to get to the root of the problem and to get these bumps under control.  After waiting for an hour to see the doctor, in less than 3 minutes of me explaining why I came to see her, all she could offer me was that my hormones were the culprit of the sudden and rapid increase of these little eruptions on my face.  I immediately thought, “Are you kidding me?”  I guess I am not quite sure what I was expecting, but I was disappointed in her answer.  Perhaps I was hoping for her to wave her magic wand and all those zits would disappear!  I ended up leaving the office with 4 different prescriptions that included antibiotics, 2 different topical creams and birth control pills to control and regulate my hormones.

I decided to also do a little research on my own, and I realized that I already knew this information about comedones which are simply pimples.  Acne or pimples are nothing but pores in the skin that get clogged with dead skin, oil and bacteria.  Sebum is produced naturally to lubricate the skin, and cells that are close to the sebaceous glands block the openings or pores.  This blockage causes a buildup of oil beneath the skin where bacteria (naturally found in the skin) feasts on the oil, spread and cause the surrounding tissues to become inflamed.

The above cross section represents a healthy and normal hair follicle and a blocked follicle, which results in a pimple or zit.


A papule pimple is a red, tender and inflamed bump that contains no pus and no head.  It is typically caused due to sweat, friction, medication prescription reactions, over abundance of sebum, dead skin and bacteria.  They are beneath the skin and are difficult to extract.


Pustule pimples are typically near the surface, are similar to whiteheads but are inflamed and usually contain white or yellow pus filled centers.


Whitehead comedones are blocked and trapped sebum and bacteria below the skin surface.  They are considered closed pores.


Blackhead comedones are where the pores are open and the sebum containing melanin (skin pigment) oxidizes and turns black.  Blackheads are sometimes difficult to remove because they slowly drain to the surface.

At some point or another, all of us have experienced overactive sebaceous glands or are experiencing overloaded hormones.  Although zits are more commonly found on the face, especially the forehead, chin and nose (T-zone) during adolescence and forehead and jawline during adulthood, zits can also be prominent on the back, chest or neck.  It is important to keep your skin clean by washing and exfoliating and to use proper implements such as an extractor to extract the zits.



In a previous post, 102, I talked about decreasing your calories in order to lose weight, but what is a calorie?????  Calories are a unit of measurement for potential energy or heat that is needed to raise the temperature of 1 gram of H2O by 1° C or 1.8° F.  It is actually measured as a kilocalorie in which 1000 calories = 1 calorie and it is equal to 4.184 joules which is the unit of measurement for energy in science talk.

Calories are needed for our bodies to function; it gives us our energy, but what makes up calories?  There are 3 main components that make up calories:  PROTEINS, CARBOHYDRATES, AND FAT.  Each of these components contain specific amount of calories per gram.

Proteins=4 calories/gram

Carbohydrates=4 calories/gram

Fats=9 calories/gram

When more calories are consumed than what your body needs, the excess will then be stored as fat.  Remember that caloric intake must be decreased by 3500 calories in order to lose just 1 pound; 7000 for 2.   Healthy diets should consist of about 25% fat, 50% carbohydrates and 25% protein total intake.

That means on a 1500 calorie diet, 375 calories or 42 grams of total fat, 750 calories or 188 grams of carbohydrates, 375 calories or 94 grams of protein should be consumed.  Now, when this is calculated, I just rounded up the grams so in actuality, it is a total of 1506 total calories.  Reading your nutrition labels will be a great help in calculating calories per serving of food.  This will come in handy when you go to grab that bag of junk food at 9pm while watching TV which is the biggest culprit to weight gain.


Today starts the beginning of a new year, 2012, and what better way to start your day with a healthy, protein & vitamin packed smoothie.  I have to laugh because it just seems all of America’s number one new year’s resolution is to lose weight.  The gym is completely over crowded with new faces trying to begin a new regime where I am ready to scrap for an elliptical machine, but it only lasts for about 2 months because those new faces have already given up or have come up with some sort of excuse not to exercise.

My smoothie is great for breakfast, especially for those who claim not to be breakfast people, or just simply as a mid-day snack.  You will all have to forgive the not so professional photos, as I took the pictures with my pocket Coolpix digital camera.



1 6oz. non fat Greek yogurt

1/2 c. orange juice

1 c. frozen berries

Combine all of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.  There is one ingredient not pictured, but I added about 1/2 c. fresh spinach.  You can also use fresh fruit, however, you may want to add ice to thicken the consistency of the smoothie.


This is the finished product with spinach included.  Don’t worry, you really can’t even taste the spinach.  Using the non fat Greek yogurt contributes 0 fat calories, yet 18 grams of protein.  Having this for breakfast or a snack will make you feel full longer due to the protein quantitiy…..try it out and let me know what you think!

Happy New Year to you all…..may the new year bring PEACE, LOVE, HAPPINESS AND PROSPERITY…….and remember…..your resolution  is NOT about a diet, but a lifestyle change…….