diet-cokeMany years ago, we swapped our six-pack-a-day habit of Diet Coke for 2 glasses of plain old water (sparking, when we were feeling fancy).  Why?  Just because it just made us feel better.  A study at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden, published in the European Journal of Endocrinology, validates our beliefs, proving that a high intake the calorie-free soda — or any artificially-sweetened drink — is actually detrimental to good health.  The Institute’s study, led by Josefin E Löfvenborg, followed 2,874 adults who drank two or more sweetened drinks (both sugar-sweetened and artificially-sweetened) daily.  After observation, researchers concluded that a high intake of sweetened beverages show increased risk of Latent Autoimmune Diabetes in Adults (also known as type-2 diabetes); in fact, those subjects who consumed the sweetened beverages are 2.4 times more likely to develop the disease.  Additionally, researchers believe that artificially-sweetened beverages potentially stimulate appetite, which may lead to “positive energy balance and weight gain” and “have adverse effects on abdominal fat and gut microbiota,” which may induce glucose intolerance.


hair-extensions   Its hard for us to imagine iconic beauties, such as Beyoncé, Jennifer Lopez, Gwen Stefani or Selena Gomez, appear on-stage or walk the red carpet without a full face of makeup or a luscious head of hair.  “Hair extensions are so ubiquitous in Hollywood these days, it’s almost more shocking when somebody doesn’t wear them,” says Glamour, “It’s like spotting a unicorn in the wild—still with an incredible mane, of course, because these are celebrities we’re talking about.”  Hair integration, more commonly known as hair extensions, adds length and fullness to human hair.  Extensions can be sewn in, bonded, braided or clipped in. and are made from artificial hair or natural hair collected from other individuals.  But did you ever wonder where this natural hair came from?
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dark-chocolateIt has always been our guilty pleasure, and now we can step out of the shadows and celebrate!  Researchers at Brown University have concluded that dark chocolate has proven cardio-vascular benefits.  Their study, published in The Journal of Nutrition, focused on nineteen separate randomized clinical trials  and more than 1100 test subject to evaluate the specific compounds found in cocoa, called flavanols.  According to Dr. Simin Liu, professor and director of the Center for Global Cardiometabolic Health at Brown, “We found that cocoa flavanol intake may reduce dyslipidemia (elevated triglycerides), insulin resistance and systemic inflammation, which are all major subclinical risk factors for cardiometabolic diseases.”  This is not to say that dark chocolate has been proven to reduce type 2 diabetes or heart attacks (neither has been studied yet); however, there were statistically significant improvements among the test subjects who ate the flavanol-rich cocoa products.  Those who ate more (between 200-600 milligrams of flavanols daily), benefitted most, seeing declines in blood glucose and insulin, an increase in HDL (or “good” cholesterol), and a drop in triglycerides.  Those who ate a smaller amount only saw a increase in HDL.