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Tuesday, February 3, 2015

How to Lose 5 Pounds and Get a Flat Stomach in a Month

Be patient and give yourself practical time to get a flat stomach - remember - you didn’t gain weight overnight, so you can’t be expecting to lose it now. If you have the long term view, you will lose 5 pounds and get a flat stomach, but importantly keep it off for good!

Below are 5 key points to help you lose 5 pounds and get a flat stomach -

1. Beware of energy and protein bars - these are usually targeted to women who want to shape up and lose weight. However, energy bars have as much sugar and fat as a regular candy bar.

2. Just eat fresh and prepare your own meals - that way you know what you are putting into your body. Make it a point to have five serves of vegetables a day with sensational salads and soups - and get 2 servings of fruits a day. These low calorie appetite suppressants will not only help you lose those unwanted calories, but will help you looking and feeling fabulous.

They‘re packed with antioxidants and dietary fiber to protect your health and enhance your vitality. Your eating habits is the major reason for your weight gain, ad by gradually changing it and making it a habit, your body will get the necessary nutrition to fuel it.

3. The key for a flat stomach is eating sensibly - and your diet doesn’t have to be complicated. While this doesn’t seem like a secret at all, most women and men get this wrong in spite of their best - but misguided - efforts. Most people have fallen prey to low-fat, low-carob, Hollywood and every other over hyped diet that marketers can dream up, all in hopes of shedding those unwanted pounds. But eating sensibly is - isn’t about dieting or deprivation; it’s about moderation and balance.

While cutting carob or fats out of your nutrition plan might give you a temporary loss of a couple of pounds, it’s typically followed by a drop in metabolism and a weight gain of more than you lost in the first place once you go back to your old eating habits. So what is eating sensibly?

4 Eating sensibly are having protein and carbohydrates at every meal. It’s grazing on 4-6 healthy meals or low fat snack each day (1 salad plate portion only), instead of missing meals and then gorging yourself. It’s enjoying a healthy breakfast and not drinking your calories. But most of all, eating supportively is enjoying the foods you love in moderation instead of in excess. This is the best way to control your cravings!
5. Exercise and good nutrition is the best way to get a flat stomach: High intensity exercise, not long boring cardio, is an essential component for fat loss. This can be achieved through intense activity, and the person will achieve better results when compared to taking on a diet program by itself.

Not only does exercise contribute to fat loss, rapid weight loss is also accompanied by reduced stress levels, an energy boost, increased body endurance, a reduced risk for diseases, and an overall improvement to your health. A great resource is The Truth about Six Pack Abs - it has the most effective workouts and nutrition tips that will show you how to lose 5 pounds and get a flat stomach in a month.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

The Ultimate Winter Checklist for your Hair!

Here’s your ultimate winter beauty checklist that will make sure you have that lustrous mane you’ve been dying for.

Intense Moisturizing

The best way to keep your hair shiny and glossy during winters is to switch your regular conditioner to an intense conditioner meant for dry hair. During winter, the natural oils that keep your hair moisturized get sapped easily, and leave your hair dry and frizzy. Giving it that extra moisture is only going to help, so do get it without a second thought.

Quality Products

Winter or not, make sure you always use quality products for your hair and skin. Don’t be lured by new shampoos and conditioners arriving in the market- changing the hair care products you use too often can actually cause damage to your hair. Instead, stick to the products that you know your hair loves, especially if you have dry hair that is more prone to damage and breaks easily.

Hair Trimming

The benefits of regular trimming are severely underrated. Not only does trimming help keep split ends at bay, but it also helps maintain your hair and keeps it glossy and shiny. In fact, it is also believed that trimming every 6-8 weeks can help improve hair growth and enhances the natural beauty of your hair by getting rid of the damaged hair.

Occasional Oiling

Your scalp health says a lot about your hair health and vice vera, and during winters, make sure you give that little extra pampering to your scalp, which is vulnerable to drying out. Choose from almond oil, argan oil and coconut oil and give yourself a nice head massage atleast once a week. These oils can actually give your scalp and hair roots the nutrients they need to keep your hair shiny and glossy.

Get Wise

Be it summers or winters, one hair care tip you should live by is to use lukewarm water while rinsing your hair. You may love going for a hot water bath during the chilly winters, but it will only leave your hair frizzy and unmanageable. Instead, use hot water for your body bath and choose lukewarm water to wash your hair. Limiting the number of times you have a head bath is also believed to be helpful during winters.

Monday, January 12, 2015

7 Fabulous Foods For Men’s Health

It is surprising how many foods that we do not find magic really have super powers. Some of them could be found in your fridge even now! What is it exactly that makes some certain foods so special?
Obviously, all foods that are rich in vitamins, minerals, important fatty acids, antioxidants and other nutrients can definitely be considered magic. These superfoods can protect your organism from various diseases. Eating them regularly can lower the level of cholesterol, wash out toxins, improve metabolism and solve many other problems. The foods you are going to read about are not exotic and can be easily found in your local store. Include them in your diet to stay healthy longer!

1. Eggs

Egg whites are pure protein. This product is the champion of superfoods that provide us with all necessary nutrients. Eating eggs can improve the quality of your blood. They are also recommended as a source of vitamin B12, vitamin A and folate. Besides, the above mentioned nutrients, eggs contain about 11 other essential vitamins and minerals.

2. Almonds

Almonds, just like any other nuts, are high in calories. Most of those calories come from monosaturated fats that are very useful for your health. Almonds reduce the level of cholesterol and prevent diabetes and heart disease. These nuts are rich in calcium, potassium, vitamin B6 and other minerals. 

3. Oats

Oats is what you should start your day with. Morning porridge is a great choice if you watch what you eat and are trying to improve your diet. These supergrains are full of vitamins, minerals, fibre and protein. You can substitute oats with quinoa and chia. All these foods taste nice even before you put berries or fruits. To make your breakfast even more beneficial, drink a glass of milk. This combination will give you enough energy to last you a few hours.

4. Coconut

Coconut is another superfood. It can be eaten raw and since this food is rich in fiber, it can be consumed to improve bowel movement. You can also drink fresh coconut water. It is especially good to quench your thirst on a hot summer day when you need some extra hydration. Coconut oil is great due to various minerals that it contains which positively influence brain function.

5. Avocado

Avocado is a rich fruit. However, its fats are healthy. Avocados are rich in vitamin E, oleic acid, folate and litein. They also contain glutathione and monounsaturated fats that prevent heart disease. Avocados also fight brain diseases, degenerative eye and even cancer.

6. Wild salmon

Eat wild salmon to keep your body functioning properly. You can also eat any other fatty fish to provide your body with Omega-3 fatty acids. These acids lower the risk of heart disease and reduce the level of cholesterol. Farmed salmon is less valuable so we suggest you opt for wild species of this delicious fish. Not only is wild salmon richer in Omega-3, it is also free of contaminants and toxins.

7. Dark chocolate

There is a delicious treat that is high in polyphenols and flavenols – dark chocolate. This product is full of antioxidants that make your heart healthier. Antioxidants help you stay young. UK scientists recommend dark chocolate as well as natural cocoa powder for men who take care of their health and well-being.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Indonesia halts search for missing AirAsia plane as night falls

 Indonesia called off until first light a search for an AirAsia plane with 162 people on board that went missing on Sunday after pilots asked to change course to avoid bad weather during a flight from Indonesia's Surabaya city to Singapore.
 AirAsia plane
Indonesia AirAsia Flight QZ8501, an Airbus 320-200 carrying 155 passengers and seven crew, lost contact with Jakarta air traffic control at 6:17 a.m. (2317 GMT on Saturday). No distress signal had been sent, said Joko Muryo Atmodjo, an Indonesian transport ministry official.

On board were 155 Indonesians, three South Koreans and one each from Singapore, Malaysia and Britain, plus a French pilot, the airline said in a statement, correcting earlier information.

Tatang Kurniadi, head of Indonesia's National Committee of Safety Transportation, expressed hope of locating the aircraft quickly and said it was too early to detect any of the so-called electronic pings from its black box recorder.

"We are using our capacity to search on sea and land. Hopefully we can find the location of the plane as soon as possible," he told a news conference.

"What I need to emphasize is until now, we have not found out how the plane fell or what kind of emergency it was."

Indonesia AirAsia is 49 percent owned by Malaysia-based budget carrier AirAsia (AIRA.KL), which has had a clean safety record since it began operating 13 years ago. The AirAsia group also has affiliates in Thailand, the Philippines and India. The aircraft had accumulated approximately 23,000 flight hours in some 13,600 flights, according to Airbus (AIR.PA).

The pilots of QZ8501 "was requesting deviation due to en-route weather before communication with the aircraft was lost," the airline said in a statement. Singapore, Malaysia, Britain, South Korea and Australia offered to help in the search and any investigation. Malaysia said it was sending vessels and a C130 aircraft while Singapore had also sent a C130. Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said a P3 Orion aircraft was on standby if needed.


Flight QZ8501 was between Tanjung Pandan on Indonesia's Belitung island and Pontianak, in West Kalimantan province on Borneo - almost halfway between Surabaya and Singapore - when it went missing. There was bad weather over Belitung at the time and the aircraft had been flying at 32,000 feet before asking to fly at 38,000 feet to avoid clouds.

In both Surabaya and Singapore, anxious relatives of people on the plane awaited news.

Louise Sidharta was at Singapore's Changi Airport waiting for her fiancée to return from a family holiday.

"It was supposed to be their last vacation before we got married," she said.

A man named Purnomo told TVOne in Surabaya of a lucky escape.

"I should have been on the flight," he said. "We, seven people, had planned to go to Singapore for vacation but this morning I had an emergency. I had my passport in hand."

Tony Fernandes, chief of Malaysia's AirAsia, said he was heading to Surabaya.

"My only thoughts are with the passengers and my crew. We put our hope in the SAR (search and rescue) operation and thank the Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysian governments," he said on Twitter.

AirAsia swapped its distinctive bright red logo for a grey background on its website and social media accounts.

The incident comes during a troubled year for Malaysia-affiliated airlines. Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 went missing on March 8 on a trip from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing with 239 passengers and crew on board and has not been found.

On July 17, Flight MH17 was shot down over Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board.

Indonesia AirAsia has a fleet of 30 Airbus A320s. The missing plane has been in service for just over six years, according to

All AirAsia-branded airlines operate aircraft made by Airbus, which has orders for several hundred planes from the group. AirAsia is considered one of the European planemaker's most important customers.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Friday Pin Up


Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Connie Converse: The mystery of the original singer-songwriter

Connie Converse remained virtually unknown after 12 years of trying to build a musical career in New York. Connie Converse was arguably the first modern singer-songwriter, writing and playing intimate songs on her acoustic guitar in the mid-1950s. But she remained virtually unknown and disappeared in 1974. Now, her talent is finally being recognised.
In summer 1974, days after her 50th birthday, Connie Converse sent fond letters to family and close friends telling them she wanted to make a fresh start.

Disillusioned with how her life had turned out, she packed her possessions into her Volkswagen Beetle and left her Michigan home. She has not been seen since.

Twenty years earlier, Connie Converse was living in Greenwich Village, the New York district where, in the mid-1950s, beatniks and bohemians were carving out counterculture.

Converse was working for a printing firm, but had hopes of making it as a musician. In her apartment, she would write haunting, beautiful songs with a poetic honesty and melodic sophistication that set her apart from the other singers in Greenwich Village.

With the folk scene still dominated by political and traditional songs at that time, the concept of the solo acoustic singer-songwriter had barely moved beyond Woody Guthrie and Pete Seeger's dust-bowl balladry.

Bob Dylan, Joan Baez and Joni Mitchell were still in school.

Converse was not the most gifted vocalist or guitar player, and her voice had an air of formality that befitted the age.

Yet when she sang, it was with a depth, intimacy and eloquence that were rare for that era.

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Listen to the track, Talkin' Like You (Two Tall Mountains)
She sang of loneliness, of promiscuity, of quarrelling lovers, of frequenting saloons in the afternoons. While some tunes had a more jaunty, fireside air, most carried an underlying sense of sadness.

Despite her ambitions, she did not play conventional gigs and stood on the edge of Greenwich Village's musical coterie.

In 1954, she recorded a set of songs in the kitchen of Gene Deitch, who had recorded Pete Seeger and John Lee Hooker in the 1940s.

Deitch and her other friends tried to help her career, but to no avail.

In 1961, the year Dylan moved to Greenwich Village, Converse turned her back on her music career and left New York for a job at the University of Michigan.

Still unfulfilled, she fell into depression and heavy drinking. She would be 90 now.

"The more I thought about it, the songs were all about herself," says Deitch, now 90, who went on to become an Oscar-winning animator.

"I think that's what makes the songs interesting. No matter what she was singing, it all had to do with sexual frustration and loneliness.

"There's something about those songs that was extremely personal. In those days, this was something you never heard.

"Nowadays, there are lots of women singers who you might call folk singers or personal song singers, who are doing pretty much the same thing as Connie did.

"But I think she was really the first."

Cult following

It seemed that Converse's songs were destined to be forgotten until Deitch's recordings were put out as an album by a small New York label in 2009.

Since then, the legend of Connie Converse has slowly grown.

"The music, considering when it was recorded, sounds eerily contemporary," says David Herman of Squirrel Thing Recordings, which released the album How Sad, How Lovely.

"Her voice is really compelling. Add to that the fact this was a woman writing singer-songwriter-style music in the mid-50s, before being a singer-songwriter was a thing, and before a female songwriter was something people were used to.

"And with the mystery of the disappearance, the whole thing leaves you with more questions than answers."

The next step in her rediscovery comes on Wednesday when a 40-minute documentary by US film-maker Andrea Kannes receives its premiere at the Sensoria film and music festival in Sheffield as part of a Connie Converse tribute night staged by British singer Nat Johnson.

'Funny and sad'

Kannes has had access to the filing cabinet Converse left behind, complete with her home recordings, letters and journals.

"It's almost like she wanted it to be found and looked through," Kannes says.

"What I found most fascinating was how funny she was in her writing.

"Here was a person who struggled through her whole life to feel successful, and you can tell there's a great sadness with a lot of the things she did and the way she lived her life, but she was also incredibly funny.

"You could tell that she was well liked and she had lots of friends. But there was still this wall between her and other people, where it didn't seem like she 100% connected with anybody."

As well as being frustrated in her music career, Converse had a powerful intellect that also never quite found its calling.

'A genius'

At high school, she dominated the graduation prize-giving ceremony and won a prestigious college scholarship.

But her parents were dismayed when she dropped out after two years and moved to New York, changing her name from Elizabeth and rejecting their strict teetotal, God-fearing upbringing.

After giving up on music and leaving New York, Converse edited the Journal of Conflict Resolution. She was also a keen political activist and a talented cartoonist.

Her brother Phil, writing in 2000, described her as "a genius and a polymath", adding: "I do not use the terms lightly." She was also an enigma.

The mystery of what became of her remains unsolved. Her family believe she took her own life, probably by driving into a lake or river.

But 60 years after she made those recordings in Greenwich Village, Connie Converse's voice is finally being heard.

Monday, September 29, 2014

A Legitimately Magical Prince Album

In 2010, Prince released an album, called “20Ten,” that ushered in the longest silence of his thirty-five-year career as a recording artist. For most of Prince’s creative existence, he’s put out an album a year, sometimes double and triple sets. After “20Ten,” though, came nothing. Well, nothing by Prince’s standards: plenty of singles trickled out, along with rumors about upcoming projects, but there was no major release. Then, earlier this year, he announced a return to Warner Bros. records, at first for the purpose of assembling a thirtieth-anniversary edition of “Purple Rain,” which would include outtakes and rare demos. This has not yet materialized. What has emerged is his first album of new material since “20Ten,” and the second: this week, Prince resurfaces with “Art Official Age,” a solo album, and “PlectrumElectrum,” a long-delayed collaboration with his all-female backing group, 3rd Eye Girl.
“PlectrumElectrum” is easier to understand and easier to dispense with, which doesn’t mean that it’s subpar, exactly. It’s a short rock record with plenty of guitar, and includes meditations on sex, self-empowerment treatises, and energetic songs about energy. The more ambitious songs often spotlight someone other than Prince. Hannah Ford, the band’s drummer, sings the plaintive ballad “Whitecaps,” and “Boy Trouble” is a strange flower of a song with an out-of-left-field speed rap.

The so-called solo record, “Art Official Age,” is considerably more interesting. For starters, Prince has dispensed with his typical “Produced, Arranged, Composed, and Performed by Prince” credit, the one on which much of his mystique as a one-man band and all-around genius was founded, and has shared production credit with Joshua Welton, who also happens to be Hannah Ford’s husband. Was this an admission by Prince that he needed another pair of ears? Was he in search of a more contemporary sound? The quasi-title track that opens the album (“Art Official Cage”) seems to suggest so. It’s a strange welter of E.D.M. clichés and Europop, with some gnomic lyrics, some grinding guitar, and some rapping. It’s a mess, provocative but not exactly successful; it sounds like a track that was left off Prince’s 1989 “Batman” soundtrack, updated for 20Fourteen.

But the rest of the album is easily Prince’s most coherent and satisfying record in more than a decade. In the past few years, the Prince songs that leaked online seemed to be less about paving the way for a new album and more about trolling the Internet. “Breakfast Can Wait,” a lithe and light funk number, was released with a cover photo of Dave Chappelle as Prince. Only a snippet of “This Could Be Us” leaked, but it was enough to confirm that Prince had written a song about a popular Internet meme that used a picture of him from his “Purple Rain” days. As proper singles started appearing, though, the album came into sharper focus. Songs like “Clouds” and “U Know,” slower and more repetitive than the kaleidoscopic funk-rock we’ve come to expect from Prince, suggested a new direction—a kind of gelatinous, futuristic R. & B.

These tracks worked in concert with the other singles to sketch out a theme: that technology separates us from those we’re close to, and even from ourselves; and that the lack of integration may well result in disintegration. “Clouds,” the second track on the album, which opens with the sound of a radio tuning, critiques the way the computer age offloads experiences to distant servers (that’s what the clouds are); the song instead prioritizes romance and human connection (“You should never underestimate the power of a kiss on the neck when she doesn’t expect a kiss on the neck”). It also folds in a well-constructed argument about the way the Internet era has encouraged empty exhibition and a half-baked argument about violence and bullying, before ending with a sci-fi monologue delivered by a British female voice that seems to suggest that Prince has been placed in some sort of centuries-long suspended animation.

“Clouds” is a kind of manifesto: “When life’s a stage in this brand new age / How do we engage?” Prince’s answer is to do a version of what he’s always done, which is absorb nearly every kind of music available and, via alchemic wizardry, turn it into something that produces thoughts and emotions. That’s even more evident on “U Know,” which is built on a sample of the singer Mila J’s “Blinded” and alternates wordy half-rapped verses about romantic misunderstanding and spiritual crisis with an irresistibly seductive chorus. The songs seem like R. & B., but they’re statements of deep unrest. Then the album hits a lull, with tracks that declare the power of music rather than demonstrate it, and insist on the superiority of the past. It’s grumpy-old-man music, done with plenty of panache. None of this, though, is sufficient preparation for the homestretch of “Art Official Age,” which is where Prince stops worrying about the future or the past and truly inhabits the present. Beginning with “What It Feels Like,” a duet with the singer Andy Allo, Prince delivers a series of ballads, broken up by interludes and a red-meat dance song, that are like nothing he’s done before.

It’s worth thinking about what it means for Prince to step into new territory. He has spent years trying to recapture pieces of his old self: the provocateur in black lingerie who got booed as an opening act for the Rolling Stones, the New Wave-inflected keyboard freak of “1999,” the motorcycle-riding rock god who ruled the world after “Purple Rain,” the tortured psychedelic introvert of “Around the World in a Day,” the jazzy genius of “Parade,” the pop polymath of “Sign O the Times,” the deeply divided spiritual pilgrim of “Lovesexy.” These old selves then became albatrosses. His albums of the late nineties and the past decade found Prince making gestures toward those personas without ever really inhabiting them again. And how could he? Here, for the first time, he suggests an alternative: maybe there’s an entirely new Prince music, possibly aided and abetted by Joshua Welton, that harnesses his talents and his vision. Maybe he’s not condemned to auto-pastiche.

The closing songs are hard to absorb at first. “Way Back Home” sounds sluggish for a while and then, suddenly, it sounds revelatory. It’s a self-portrait painted in the strangest and most accurate colors imaginable, a melancholy confession and bruised boast in which Prince cops to the fact that he’s out of place, out of sorts, pushed forward at times by desperation but “born alive” in a world where most people are “born dead.” And “Time,” which runs for nearly seven minutes, is a love song, briefly lickerish, that’s mostly about the loneliness of the road. In both cases, Prince brings the tempo way down, focusses on the nuances of his melodies, shares the spotlight with female vocalists, weaves in motifs from earlier songs from the album, and adds a steady supply of surprising touches (such as the superbly funky, if subdued, horn outro to “Time”).

The ballads are broken up by “FunkNRoll,” a straightforwardly exciting party song that also appears on “PlectrumElectrum,” but the version here serves the album’s over-all message—it’s knotty, both playful and eerie, with sonar-like sound effects that create a sense of distance and mediation. The closing track, “Affirmation III,” is a haunting reprise of “Way Back Home.” And while it’s abstract (the clipped, angelic backing chorus, which seems to be on loan from Laurie Anderson, is even more prominent), it’s also concrete. For the first time in years, Prince seems not just carnal but corporeal. Way back on “Controversy,” he challenged categories: “Am I black or white? Am I straight or gay?” By the time of “I Would Die 4 U,” the challenge had turned to taunting: “I’m not a woman / I’m not a man / I am something you can never understand,” and then, messianically, “I’m not a human.” Here, he presents himself as something understandable and fully human. In “Breakfast Can Wait,” he pleads with his lover that she can’t “leave a black man in this state.” But that black man is in this state: he’s in his fifties, grappling with loneliness, aging, creative inspiration, self-doubt, a shifting cultural landscape, and love. As luck would have it, he’s also Prince.