One Thing That May Be Sabotaging Your Health

By: Thomas A. Curry

Many of us try to do everything right to keep our bodies in shape yet we often forget a key part of the equation.

When was the last time you got eight solid, dreamy hours of sleep a night of shut-eye so good you woke up (without an alarm clock) feeling gung-ho to start the day ahead of you? I really had to sit down and ponder this question, and it turns out, I can’t remember when.

Believe me, it’s not that I don’t know the value of sleep for health and mental acuity; it’s just that so many other things seem to have dibs on that precious slumber time: a work project requiring a few uninterrupted hours of my attention (late at night); my 2-year-old son needing to know I’m nearby when he wakes up briefly at 2 a.m.; and my husband’s complete obliviousness to his tendency to snore very loudly.

So I, like most other women juggling a lot, tend to give short shrift to what’s possibly one of the most important parts of the health equation: sleep. Starting tonight, I’ll be following the advice in “Your New #1 Stay-Healthy Mission: Get More Sleep,”, and I encourage you to do the same.

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This issue of Shape is chock-full of many other easy ways to improve your health. Check out “Smart Eating 101,”, which discusses how cereal could be one of the best foods for you. In “5 Ways to Get a Healthy, Radiant Smile,”, you’ll get tips on how to keep your gums in top condition, a critical step since studies show that gum disease is linked to chronic diseases like diabetes.

And if you need more inspiration to give your body the attention it deserves, special on celebrity stay-fit secrets. In a Shape reader poll, 86 percent of you said you wanted this kind of insider info, so we got it directly from Hollywood trainers and diet experts and even from the stars themselves. You’ll also find the results of our first annual “Sexiest Bodies in Hollywood” survey. Here’s to a healthier month for both you and me!

THE SHOCKING TRUTH I LEARNED THIS MONTH

More than half of all women suffer from foot pain after squeezing into too-tight stilettos or heels. I’m all about sacrificing a little bit of comfort for style sometimes, but not at the expense of your feet–or even your back (which can get thrown out of alignment with ill-fitting shoes). Find out how to alleviate the problem (without having to resort to flats) in “Quick Fixes for Your Aching Back,”, and in Fashion Q&A.

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This Month Shape Wants You to

* Pair red wine with dark chocolate. Find out why in “The Dessert That’s Actually Healthy for You,”.

* Break out of your produce rut. Try some new, even exotic, foods like the superfruits.

* Give your gym look a makeover. Toss out those baggy sweats and put on some of the sophisticated workouts wear suited for any shape.

* Indulge your designer side. Every woman deserves to own at least one designer item, be it one of the fragrances–or one of the fabulously retro Hollywood-style outfits.

See more:

It’s Two Steps Forward, One Step Back In Retailer, Vendor Dance

Accenting Packaging, P-o-p Displays

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