Health Tips
Stay healthy by reading wellness advice from our top specialists.

In order to maintain a healthy lifestyle, it is imperative to load up on foods that are rich in vital nutrients. While taking care of our body, we often tend to neglect our nails. There is no denying the fact that our nails can reflect our inner health to a great extent. In order to keep them healthy and strong, it is important to look after them. If you've been suffering from the problem of unhealthy, discoloured or chipped nails, then including a few foods in your daily diet might come to great help. Calcium and B vitamins are essential for healthy nails. Here is a list of 5 foods that may help you get stronger nails.

Fish

To attain healthy and stronger nails, it is important to load up on proteins. A diet rich in protein can prove to be beneficial for one's overall health. Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, fish is an excellent source of proteins and sulphur. If you happen to have thin and brittle nails, then this one's for you. Since fish has abundant amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, it will help in moisturising the nail bed. Apart from this, it can also increase their suppleness.

Eggs

A whole, large egg can provide you with a good dose of vitamin D. Not only is it a great source of protein, but its vitamin B12, iron and biotin content are known to increase fingernail thickness. Include this healthy food in your daily diet and watch out for results.

Green Peas

These tiny delights look small but are packed with a host of health benefiting properties. Green peas are abundantly rich in protein, beta-carotene and vitamin C. This nutrient-rich food helps in strengthening the finger nail and may increase its rate of growth as well.

Oats

For healthy fingernail maintenance, it is imperative to load up on micronutrients as well. Oats are rich in copper, zinc, manganese and B vitamins, which are known to promote healthy fingernail growth.

Green Leafy Vegetables

Loaded with calcium, iron and antioxidants, green leafy vegetables are a powerhouse of nutrients. Adding spinach, kale, broccoli etc. to your daily diet may help you keep brittle nails at bay.

So, if you've successfully given up on the habit of biting your nails and are now on the next step of making them strong and healthy, bring these foods to your rescue and get going!

No matter how dearly we love ourselves there are few things that will always rob us off our confidence. From belly fat, love handles to saggy arms and double chin - these are the problem areas that are hard to hide and instantly begin to show if we put on the slightest weight. Work your way through hiding that winter weight gain but one thing that will always be right out in the open is double chin. Excess weight is one of the biggest perpetrators of that extra facial mass, whereas age-related collagen loss also causes our skin to lose its elasticity and become saggy. If double chin has been your cause of concern then fret not! We bring you the natural way to achieve that enviable look all over again.Yoga has answers to some of our most common, everyday woes. Can the age-old practice help beat double chin? "Of course, you can try facial yoga. Other than that, all postures that come under 'the heart opener' are effective in reducing double chin. These include all such asanas that require you to extend your hands back, like the camel pose," says Manisha Kohli, co-founder of Yoga Chakra, GK II, Delhi.

Easy yogic tricks to reduce double chin with double chin exercises can be The Chub Blaster, The Giraffe, The Fish Expression, and The Dumbbell Technique.

1. The Chub Blaster

This will give a your jaw and neck and nice stretch and work on toning the muscles. Follow the steps given below.

- Stand or sit in a comfortable position - padmasana or sukhasana.

- Keep your head in a normal position.

- Now, lift your lower lip as much as possible and push your lower jaw out.

- You can feel the tension in your chin and jaw muscles.

- Stay for 10-15 seconds and relax.

2. The Giraffe

This one is the easiest of the lot and works magic on toning up that double chin when double chin workouts are done regularly.

- Sit comfortably and look ahead.

- Place your fingers at the end of your neck and stroke your skin downward.

- Simultaneously, tilt your head backwards.

- Now bend your neck to touch your chest with your chin.

- Repeat the entire process two times.

Try neck rotations, neck bends and several other neck exercises to get better results.

3. The Fish Expression

Another effective way to tighten your facial muscles is by doing the fish expression. Suck your lips and cheeks in till your mouth starts resembling a fish. Now look right and left, then up and hold the pose for 10-15 seconds. Repeat thrice.

4. The Dumbbell Technique

You can also try the dumbbell technique wherein you lift your chin up and repeatedly open and close your mouth for -10-15 seconds; repeat thrice.

Get in touch with a certified yoga practitioner to learn more double chin workouts and exercises to reduce double chin

How many of you have ever given it a thought that we need to take care of our lips just as we take care of our rest of the body? There is no denying the fact that besides our hands, feet, face, and elbows, our lips also require some attention and care. It is important to keep them nourished so that they feel soft, healthy and supple. Not many of you would know that lips are the only part of our bodies that do not have pores and therefore require hydration and nourishing. What better way to do it than with natural ingredients? If you have been suffering from dark, dry or chapped lips and are looking for ways to improve the health of your lips, then we're here to help. Here's how you can.

Almond oil works wonders and just a drop massaged onto the lips 2-3 times a day will help immensely. Here's a fabulous natural lip scrub that you can make at home in a jiffy.

Take the following ingredients and store in an air-tight container-

50 gms honey
20 gms or 4 tsp sugar
5 ml rose water
5 ml vanilla essence

Method:

Mix well together and take about half a teaspoon and use as a lip scrub.
Honey is one of nature's most powerful moisturisers. Sugar will help exfoliate and soften the skin and rose water will help keep your lips supple and toned. Together this wonderful combination will smoothen, cleanse and soften your lips!

For Chapped Lips
Besides this I have seen many people suffer from chapped lips and peeling skin which can also become painful. The best remedy for this is to apply a drop of clarified butter onto the lips at night for 3-4 days. You will see an immediate difference. Also apply a little honey on the area and avoid sipping very hot drinks.

For Dark Lips
Dark lips can turn out to be quite annoying for many people and I have seen women camouflaging their lips by applying dark lipsticks. Firstly let your skin breathe, which means avoid lipsticks all the time. Remember a clean skin is a healthy skin.

Make the following lightening oil for dark lips:
Mix 3 tbsp of the following and store in a bottle-

Coconut oil
Almond oil

Method:

Apply this onto the lips several times a day.

You can also make a lip mask with the following ingredients that will help lighten the lips tremendously-

Things You Need:

2 tsp almond paste
1 tsp raw potato, grated
The juice of half a lemon
1 tsp fresh cream

Method:

Mix well and apply a coat of this on the lips.
Leave on for 10 minutes and wipe or wash off with tepid water.
Used 2-3 times a week, this mask has miraculous effects.

For Dark Outlined Lips
Dark outlined lips can be worrisome and many people do not really know how to treat this condition. However, the easiest natural remedy is to firstly avoid licking the lip area as the soreness will only get worse. Secondly, take a small bowl of cold full fat cream milk and add cotton pads to this. Use as cold compression on the area and let the skin soak in the liquid. Once you feel the cotton becoming warm, replace with another compression. This should be done for about ten minutes. Done over 3-4 days, you will find an immediate difference in your skin.

For Cracked Lips Especially Around The Corners
Cracked lips especially around the corners can be painful and could even look ugly. Hydration and moisturising are very important. Fresh cream applied to the area and cold water compressions on the cracks soothe and heal the area very effectively. Apply fresh cream massaging gently and apply ice cold water compressions to the lips. Done 2-3 times, you will find a marked difference.

Now that you have some simple and effective natural remedies, look after your lips and maintain their health.

Remember how our mothers used to give us handful of soaked almonds every day before going to school? We know that these crunchy nuts are an excellent source of plant protein, essential fatty acids, vitamin E, and magnesium - all of which are known to improve our overall health. But did you know that almonds could also do wonders to your skin, if applied topically? Yes, that's right! As we know that almonds are packed with vitamin E - they help keep our skin hydrated and further make it soft and supple. Moreover, the presence of antioxidants in almonds keeps our skin wrinkle-free, young and glowing. But if you are still not convinced, then why don't you try these almond face masks and see the results yourself.

Here are some simple and easy DIY almond face masks that you can try this winter to keep your skin youthful and glowing:
1. Almond And Milk Face Mask For Tan Removal
Ingredients:

1 tablespoon almond powder
2 tablespoon raw milk

How to apply:

Take a bowl and mix both the ingredients in it. Mix it well till you get a thick paste-like consistency. Now, wash your face with lukewarm water and apply this mask on your face and neck. Keep this face mask for about 20 minutes. Rinse your face thoroughly with lukewarm water. You may apply this mask on your arms and legs too.

2. Almond, Milk And Grounded Oats Face Mask For Natural Glow
Ingredients:

2 tablespoon almond
1 tablespoon grounded oats
3 tablespoon raw milk

How to apply:

Take a bowl and mix all the ingredients in it. Make sure you have a thick paste without any lumps. Apply this face mask before going to bed. Clean your face with rose water with the help of a cotton ball. Once you are done with that, apply this mask on your face and let it stay there for 20 minutes, or keep it overnight. If you wash your face at night, use lukewarm water and apply your night cream after that.

3. Almond, Turmeric And Gram Flour Face Mask For Instant Glow
Ingredients:

1 tablespoon almond powder
2 tablespoon gram flour
1 tablespoon turmeric

How to apply:

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl to make a thick pasty-like consistency. You may add a little rose water, if you think your mixture is little dry. Apply the face mask all over your face and keep it for about 15 minutes. Rinse it with normal water.

Note: Some of the almond face masks can be a little messy, especially the almond, milk and grounded oats face mask; therefore, you may rinse the mask off before you sleep. Also, don't forget to check with your doctor for any allergies.

Monsoon is here and along with it, comes dry and flaky skin. Dry skin can turn out to be quite annoying. If you have been looking for ways to get rid of that flaky dry skin; fret not, we're here to help. A lot of ingredients that are easily available in Indian kitchens can come quite handy in keeping dry skin at bay, especially in winters. Two such ingredients that can possibly do wonders for your skin health are milk and banana. Banana helps in peeling off the dead skin; whereas, milk acts as a clarifying agent. Both the ingredients complement each other quite well and are used in a variety of beauty rituals, including skin care and hair care rituals. Both the ingredients are all-natural, so you can easily use them without worrying about the side-effects. Here is a face mask using these two humble kitchen ingredients that you may bring to your rescue:

Ingredients Required:

1 Banana
1 tablespoon Milk

Method:

To begin with, take a bowl and add one whole mashed banana in it.

Then, add in one tablespoon of milk in the bowl and mix both the ingredients well.

Once you get a thick paste-like mixture, apply it on your face and neck.

Allow the banana-milk mixture to stay for around 15-20 minutes.

Once done, wash it off with warm water.

Note: In order to get amazing results, you can use this face mask twice a week. After washing your face, you can apply a mild moisturiser to make it look more supple and radiant.

Dr. Gauri Karve
Dr. Gauri Karve
MBBS, 6 yrs, Pune
Dr. Piyush  Jain
Dr. Piyush Jain
MS - Allopathy, Ophthalmologist Pediatric Ophthalmologist, 5 yrs, Pune
Dr. Nilima  Pawar
Dr. Nilima Pawar
BHMS, General Physician Homeopath, 12 yrs, Pune
Dr. Shalthiel Sathe
Dr. Shalthiel Sathe
BHMS, Medical Cosmetologist Trichologist, 10 yrs, Pune
Dr. Akshay Biyani
Dr. Akshay Biyani
BDS, Dentist Root canal Specialist, 10 yrs, Pune
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