Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Secret to Bigger, Better Orgasms

Yes! Yes! Yes!

Everyone loves a happy ending—so why stop at just one? In our exclusive Health.com orgasm survey, three-quarters of you said you want more: more frequent O’s, stronger O’s, and yes, O’s in a row!

Gird your loins, ladies: We’ve got tips from top ecstasy experts on how to achieve ultimate bedroom bliss.


Take it to the brink

To make your orgasm …
Last longer

Unlike men, women can maintain a heightened level of arousal, without going over the edge.

To take advantage, "Practice something called ‘peaking’ where, using his hands or his mouth during foreplay, your man brings you just to the edge of climax, backs down a bit, then increases the intensity again, and so on," says Ian Kerner, PhD, sex therapist and founder of GoodinBed.com. "It keeps you in this holding pattern of orgasmic pleasure."


Ride it out

Think about what happens when you climax: Does your body clench? Do you hold your breath? Sure, all of that tension may help you reach orgasm, but once you get there, it’s holding you back.

"If you allow the sensations to take over your entire body, rather than react against them, you can draw the orgasm out," says sexologist Yvonne K. Fulbright, PhD.


Think naughty thoughts

To make your orgasm …
Feel stronger

"Fantasizing about something new or exotic during foreplay boosts your dopamine levels, which enhance your level of arousal, and in turn, make your orgasms even more powerful," Kerner says.

Pretend you and your man are on the beach in Belize, or having sex where the neighbors might see. The fantasy will eventually slip away, but that heightened level of excitement will lead to a more intense peak.


Go for aftershocks

Women have a little-known pleasure point that, when triggered during orgasm, can magnify the sensation.

Right above your clitoral hood, in the groove where your labia meet, is the front commissure, an area rife with nerve endings that contributes to your orgasmic potential, Kerner says.

If you or your partner applies pressure there while you’re in that blissed-out moment, it can create an even more powerful release.


Order up an appetizer and an entree

To make your orgasm …
Happen again and again (and again)

Hey, a girl can be greedy! Your best bet is to try to achieve one during foreplay, followed by another during intercourse.

"If you’ve reached orgasm before sex, you’ll be that much more primed to have a second one," Fulbright explains. "During sex, he’ll be stimulating you internally as well, so the next one can be a deeper sensation."


Play with toys

Your buzzy buddy can make a second (or third!) happy ending happen a helluva lot easier with your partner. If your guy is up for it, you can use it during intercourse, while in girl-on-top position. Or ask him to use it on you as a post-show treat.

"Since you’re going to feel especially sensitive after your first orgasm, set it at a low intensity," Kerner explains. "A small vibrator, like a pocket rocket, provides constant stimulation, with little effort."


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The Medical Tests Every Woman Must Have in your 30s, 40s, 50s


Sure, your to-do list is probably longer than the Great Wall of China, so you may be tempted to let your annual mammogram or cholesterol test slip. But don’t let that happen: Stud­ies show that regular checkups and screenings can help keep you out of the doctor’s office the rest of the year. Here, we lay out the essential med­ical tests you need in your 30s, 40s, 50s, and up, according to top women’s-health experts. In most cases, these should be covered by insurance—but be sure to ask first.

In your 30s and up, get a …

Full gynecological check

Your gyno will perform manual pelvic and breast exams, plus a Pap smear (during which cervical cells are collected with a swab). You may also receive an HPV (human papilloma­virus) test to detect strains of the HPV virus that are responsible for most cervical cancer cases.

Why you need it: A pelvic exam checks for abnormalities such as growths. A breast exam will identify any suspicious lumps, dimpling, rashes, and nipple discharge. And the Pap smear and HPV test are important screenings for cervical cancer.

How often you need it: All women 30 and older need annual pelvic exams (a breast exam is typically included). The exception: You may be able to skip a year or two if three consecutive, annual Pap tests come back normal or if you have both the Pap and HPV tests and both are regularly normal.

Tip: For the most accurate Pap results, avoid having sex or using vaginal medications (such as anti-yeast creams) one to two days before your appointment, says Mary Marnach, MD, an assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. And at home, many experts say, it’s smart to perform monthly breast self-exams (manual checks for lumps), despite debate about whether these exams help prevent breast cancer deaths. Do them about a week after you start your period, when breasts tend to be less swollen and tender, Marnach says.

Heart-health check

Your doc will check your blood pressure and administer a lipid profile, a blood test that checks for LDL (bad) and HDL (good) cholesterol, triglycerides, and total cholesterol levels. If you have a family history of heart disease or other risk factors, she may recommend a high-sensitivity CRP test (hs-CRP), which measures inflammation, an indicator of heart health. If you have a history of depression, you may have increased levels of inflammation.

Why you need it: These tests help determine your level of risk for heart disease (the number-one killer of women) and stroke.

How often you need it: If your blood pressure is normal—120 over 80, or less—get rechecked every two years. Have your cholesterol checked every five years. (After age 45, you’ll need both tests annually, as your risk rises with age.) Talk to your doctor about how often to retake the hs-CRP test, if this applies to you.

Tip: A lipid profile is best done after fasting for 9 to 12 hours, so book a morning appointment and skip breakfast. If your blood pressure reading seems unusually high, try again a few minutes later or at the end of the visit.

Skin check

Your dermatologist looks head to toe for any suspicious moles or growths.

Why you need it: Melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, often begins as a mole. And the disease is on the rise, especially in women.

How often you need it: Once or twice a year.

Tip: You should also perform your own monthly skin checks in front of a mirror—and don’t skimp on your lower half: melanoma can crop up anywhere on the body but is more commonly found on women’s legs. Talk to your derm if you spot any suspicious or changing moles, and always apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen (it blocks both UVA and UVB rays) 20 to 30 minutes before any outdoor activity.

Eye exam

This series of tests, performed by an ophthalmologist or optometrist, checks vision and looks for signs of eye disease.

Why you need it: The exam can catch signs of glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration, and cataracts, as well as diabetes and high blood pressure.

How often you need it: Every three years (every two after age 40), or more frequently if there’s a family history of eye disease or you have diabetes, high blood pressure, or are a contact lens wearer, according to Andrea Thau, doctor of optometry, of the American Optometric Association.

Tip: Wear sunglasses, even on cloudy days, to protect your eyes from damaging ultraviolet light. Choose a pair that blocks 99 to 100 percent of both UVA and UVB radiation; ask the salesperson for help or check the label. 

In your 40s, add a …

Diabetes test

This test determines your blood-glucose level to diagnose prediabetes and diabetes.

Why you need it: Diabetes affects more than 23 million Americans, ups risks of heart disease and stroke, and can lead to kidney disease and blindness.

How often you need it: Every three years after age 45. Talk to your doctor about testing earlier if you’re overweight and have any other risk factors, such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol, or if you smoke or have a family history of diabetes. If you have prediabetes (your blood-glucose level is slightly elevated), you should be checked every one to two years.

Tip: Don’t eat or drink for eight hours before the test. To lower your risk for diabetes by nearly 60 percent, exercise 30 minutes a day and maintain a healthy weight.


This X-ray of the breasts screens for cancer. There are film (traditional) and digital mammograms. Both are effective for spotting tumors, but research shows that digital mammography is significantly better for women who are younger than age 50 or have very dense breasts, according to the National Cancer Institute.

Why you need it: Thanks to this critical tool, on average, women are being diagnosed with smaller tumors now than in past decades. (Small tumors are more likely to be at a more treatable stage.)

How often you need it: Every year, starting at age 40. If your mother or sister was diagnosed with breast cancer, especially if she was younger than 40, get tested 5 to 10 years earlier than the age your relative was diagnosed.

Tip: “Schedule mammos about two weeks after your period, when breasts are less tender,” says Nieca Goldberg, MD, director of the New York University Langone Medical Center Women’s Heart Program and author of Nieca Goldberg’s Complete Guide to Women’s Health. Skip deodorant, perfume, or powder that day because the residue can interfere with the X-rays.

Vitamin D Test

The blood test checks your level of this important nutrient.

Why you need it: Vitamin D helps protect your bones. It may also defend against diabetes, heart disease, and some cancers, and hike your body’s ability to fight off infections. You typically get the nutrient from sun exposure and fortified dairy products. But now that women are more cautious about the sun’s harmful rays (rightly so), some may not be getting enough D. Supplementation can help.

How often you need it: Ask your doctor. Aging ups your risk of vitamin D deficiency (your body becomes less efficient at synthesizing the nutrient).

Tip: Get more vitamin D from foods like salmon, egg yolks, and fortified milk, or from a calcium-and–vitamin D supplement.

In your 50s, add a …


The doc will insert a long, flexible tube with a small camera on the end through your rectum to check for polyps (small growths that can become cancerous over time) while you’re sedated. Any suspicious growths are immediately removed for testing.

Why you need it: The risk of colon cancer—the fourth most common cancer in women and men—increases with age. It’s often curable if detected early.

How often you need it: Every 5 to 10 years, unless your doctor recommends otherwise. Start testing earlier if you have a family history of the disease.

Tip: If you’re nervous, bring your iPod. Research shows that listening to your favorite music can help you tune out anxiety and require less sedation.

Thyroid Test

This blood test checks your level of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH).

Why you need it: High TSH levels can mean hypothyroidism (under-active thyroid), which can cause unexplained weight gain, fatigue, dry skin, and brittle nails. And low levels indicate hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid), which is marked by a fast pulse, insomnia, and weight loss that can’t be attributed to diet or activity changes. Thyroid problems are more common in older people.

How often you need it: Every five years. But if you start to notice symptoms earlier, don’t wait to get checked. The American Thyroid Association is pushing for screening to start at age 35.

Tip: A thyroid problem can be temporary. Up to 10 percent of women develop one after giving birth, but 90 percent will return to normal in six to nine months. “A thyroid problem is often mistaken for postpartum blues,” says Mark Wiesen, MD, chief of endocrinology at Hackensack University Medical Center. If you’re pregnant, talk to your doc about getting tested after delivering your baby. 

Bone-density (DEXA) scan

This X-ray measures bone mass (the amount of calcium and minerals in bones), a key indicator of bone strength.

Why you need it: Your estrogen level plummets as you age, upping your risk for osteopenia, or low bone mass, which can lead to osteoporosis if not treated. (Medication may be prescribed if you have osteopenia.) Women who are Caucasian or of Southeast Asian descent are at higher risk, as are those with small frames or family histories of the condition.

How often you need it: Ask your doc.

Tip: To help bones stay strong, do 30 minutes of weight-bearing exercise (like tennis or aerobics) several times a week; regularly eat dairy foods (low-fat milk, cheese, and yogurt) and fortified foods like cereal and orange juice; and take a calcium-and–vitamin D supplement like Citracal Plus. But don’t take a supplement for 24 hours before the scan, as it could skew the results.

A test you don’t need

During a Whole-Body CT Scan, your body is scanned using special X-rays to look for signs of abnormalities and disease. But there’s no solid proof that it helps detect any particular disease early enough for the condition to be treated or cured, according to the Food and Drug Administration.

Most health organizations don’t recommend it. What’s more, the scan may needlessly expose you to radiation and can lead to further, unnecessary testing or biopsies when the problem may be benign or go away on its own.
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The Top Fat-Burning Foods

Boost your metabolism

It’s true: Certain foods have a very high thermogenic effect, so you literally scorch calories as you chew. Other eats contain nutrients and compounds that stoke your metabolic fire. Feed your metabolism with these.

Whole grains

Your body burns twice as many calories breaking down whole foods (especially those rich in fiber such as oatmeal and brown rice) than processed foods.


Lean meats

Protein has a high thermogenic effect: You burn about 30% of the calories the food contains during digestion (so a 300-calorie chicken breast requires about 90 calories to break it down).


Low-fat dairy products

Rich in calcium and vitamin D, these help preserve and build muscle mass—essential for maintaining a robust metabolism.


Green tea

Drinking four cups of green tea a day helped people shed more than six pounds in eight weeks, the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reports. Credit EGCG, a compound in the brew that temporarily speeds metabolism after sipping it. To up your intake, keep a jug of iced tea in the fridge.



One cup packs 35% of your daily iron needs—good news, since up to 20% of us are iron- deficient. When you lack a nutrient, your metab slows because the body’s not getting what it needs to work efficiently, says Tammy Lakatos Shames, RD, co-author of The Secret to Skinny.


Hot peppers

Capsaicin, the compound that gives chili peppers their kick, heats up your body, which makes you melt additional calories. You can get it by eating raw, cooked, dried, or powdered peppers, says Lakatos Shames. “Add as much cayenne or hot sauce as possible to soups, eggs, and meats.”


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25 Shocking Celebrity Weight Changes

Stars lose weight, gain it

Whether they’re slimming down to play a perfectionist ballerina or bulking up to a gladiator-esque stature, celebrities often need to change their shape drastically—and on short notice—to ace roles (or meet the expectations of a critical public).

The problem? This type of dieting can be bad for your health.

Crash diets can weaken your immune system, leaving you more vulnerable to getting sick and may even hurt your heart.

Fast weight gain can be bad news too, particularly for the heart and joints.

Healthy or not, here’s a look at some of the most dramatic transformations.

Jennifer Hudson

jennifer-hudsonThe Grammy and Oscar winner’s dramatic weight loss was the makeover on everyone’s lips in 2010.

In August 2009, Hudson had to lose her baby weight before shooting her next movie, Winnie, in which she plays Nelson Mandela’s wife (due out this year). She worked out regularly with celeb trainer Harley Pasternak and cut back on calories with help from the Weight Watchers program.

Now the face of Weight Watchers, Hudson, 29, is a slender size 6, down from a 16.

Christian Bale

This Batman famously lost a startling 63 pounds to play a chronic insomniac in the film The Machinist.

Bale, now 37, reportedly took supplements to make sure he still got his vitamins but hardly ate and over exercised to trim himself to only 122 pounds (he’s 6 feet tall!).

He slimmed down again more recently from his normal 185 pounds to play a former professional boxer in The Fighter.

Oprah Winfrey

oprah-winfreyWhen it comes to weight-loss tabloid fodder, Oprah, 57, reigns supreme. Her weight has fluctuated often and drastically, and it’s always been "breaking news." The yo-yoing is partly due to a thyroid condition, which she said she had leaned on as an excuse to eat whatever she wanted in the past.

In the early 2000s, she trimmed down to a fit 160 and thought she had finally conquered her weight issues. But in 2008, she opened up that she had hit 200 pounds—again. In 2010, she announced on her show that she would never diet again.

Drew Carey

For funny guy Drew Carey, 52, the extra pounds were becoming a serious health issue.

After losing 80 since January 2010, Carey told People magazine he no longer needs medication for his type 2 diabetes.

To slim down, he stuck to a diet high in protein, fruits, and veggies, and a tough regimen of 45 minutes of cardio six times a week.


John Goodman

The actor, perhaps best known for his beefy Dan Conner on Roseanne, tipped the scales at 368 pounds in 2007.

Since then, Goodman, 58, has quit drinking, cut sugar out of his diet—and gotten off the couch. Now he works out six days a week and is down more than 100 pounds!

50 Cent

50-centThe rapper's shocking weight loss wasn’t because of any health concerns; it was because of his role as a cancer patient in the upcoming film Things Fall Apart.

In May 2010, 50 Cent, 35, revealed emaciated-looking photos of himself. He had dropped from 214 pounds to a slight 160 in just nine weeks.

With shooting wrapped, he was back to looking like himself by September 2010.


Kevin Federline

Once a toned dancer, the former Mr. Britney Spears ballooned to 240 pounds around the time of his 30th birthday.

Never one to pass up a chance in the spotlight, K-Fed, 32, appeared on VH1’s reality show Celebrity Fit Club in 2010 to try to slim down, but he has continued to struggle with his weight.

Kelly Osbourne

After a stint on Dancing with the Stars, Ozzy's daughter quit her emotional eating and dropped 50 pounds.

All the dance workouts and weight training paid off for the 26-year-old; she bared her new size 2 body on the December 2010 cover of Shape magazine.

jared-leto-beforeJared Leto

The actor gained 60 pounds to play the role of John Lennon’s killer in the film Chapter 27. The sudden and dramatic gain left him with severe gout-like foot pain.

Leto, 38, told the New York Daily News that he “gorged and force-fed” himself to put on the pounds. He said it took over a year to feel like he was back to normal and won’t be gaining weight for a role again.


Charlize Theron

The actress gained 30 pounds eating doughnuts, and was almost unrecognizable as a prostitute and serial killer in 2003’s Monster.

She returned to her normal weight even before the film’s premiere. Theron, 35, who has said she is usually around a size 8 and likes her curves, went on to win the Golden Globe for Best Actress for the role.

star-jonesStar Jones Reynolds

michael-mooreThe former co-host of The View at first wouldn’t fess up to having gastric bypass surgery. But having dropped around 160 pounds in just three years, Reynolds, 48, came clean in 2007 that she had done something drastic to lose the weight.

Bariatric surgery isn’t a quick fix, though. Continuing to eat an unhealthy diet after the procedure can cause patients to gain weight right back. However, surgery can be a viable option for the extremely obese.

Michael Moore

The opinionated filmmaker dropped a dramatic 70 pounds by eliminating salt, sugar, and white flour from his diet, and upping his exercise regimen to walking 30 to 40 minutes every day.

Moore, 56, allegedly checked into a Florida weight-loss spa in 2007 and again in December 2010.

janet-jacksonJanet Jackson

A notorious yo-yo dieter, Janet Jackson and her weight have been a near constant topic in the media.

She showed off her incredible body and admitted eating only an apple and a small bag of tortilla chips a day while preparing for her Love Will Never Do music video shoot. Today, Jackson, 44, sticks to a much healthier pescatarian diet and works out regularly with a trainer.

Perez Hilton

perez-hiltonThe self-proclaimed "Queen of All Media" celebrity blogger slimmed down by eating healthier and gradually adding gym workouts, dropping over 60 pounds in three years.

What started as simple 30-minute daily walks became 7-days-a-week training sessions, and, eventually, Hilton, 32, whose real name is Mario Lavandeira Jr., opted for delivery meals. In October 2010, he even launched a new site, called FitPerez.com, focused on fitness and the healthy habits of his favorite A-listers.

nicole-richieNicole Richie

In 2006, the 5'2" socialite weighed only about 90 pounds—dangerously thin even by Hollywood standards—and sought treatment for her weight issues. Many speculated she was suffering from an eating disorder, although she never spoke openly about it.

Richie, 29, who has two children and was recently married, has remained slim, but appears to be at a healthier weight than at her thinnest.


Seth Rogen

Since first gracing the silver screen, funny guy Seth Rogen has slimmed down significantly by working out with trainer to the stars Harley Pasternak.

The 28-year-old ditched around 30 pounds in nine months.

renee-zellwegerRenee Zellweger

To play the classic, awkward thirtysomething role of Bridget Jones, actress Renee Zellweger, now 41, gained 20 pounds and went from a size 4 to a size 14.

Perhaps more shocking was her post-Bridget Jones slim down. She dieted to lose the weight she had put on, and continued to lose even after returning to her healthy size 4. Constant weight fluctuations, like Zellweger's, can make it harder for dieters to lose pounds and keep them off in the long run.

valerie-bertinelliValerie Bertinelli

In 2007, after reaching 172 pounds, the actress became a spokeswoman for Jenny Craig and lost 50 pounds.

Our former cover girl, 50, now stays around 128 pounds by watching her portion sizes and getting active—she even ran the 2010 Boston Marathon!



Although the comedian and actress was always vocal about loving her body the way it was, she made the decision to get healthy after being diagnosed with high blood pressure and topping out at 262 pounds.

Mo’Nique, 43, lost around 45 pounds in 2009 by eating healthier. She nixed junk food, red meat, and fried foods, and went from a size 20 to a 14.

ron-lesterRon Lester

Best known for playing Billy Bob in 1999’s Varsity Blues, Lester, now 40, was over 500 pounds at his heaviest. By December of 2000 he had had enough of playing obese characters and not being able to move comfortably on the set. He turned to gastric bypass surgery (which was still experimental at the time) and needed 17 follow-up procedures to remove excess skin. He slimmed down to a healthy 193 pounds.

Al Roker

al-rokerThe Today show’s weather anchor also turned to surgery to get trim. Roker, 56, weighed over 340 pounds in 2002 and was wearing a size 60 suit.

His weight had fluctuated throughout his life, but he had always gained the 30- or 40-pound losses back. In 2002, he underwent gastric bypass surgery at his wife's suggestion and dropped 140 pounds. He says that he has finally accepted that maintaining a healthy weight will be a lifelong battle even after surgery. Today, he watches his portion sizes and exercises regularly to stay around 200 pounds.

kristen-alleyKirstie Alley

One of the most notorious yo-yo dieters, actress Kirstie Alley, 60, was once the face of Jenny Craig. She lost 75 pounds with the diet plan’s help, but gained much of it back after her contract ended.

She starred in her own show about her struggle with her weight in the mid-2000s, when her weight had ballooned to over 200. In 2008, she pledged to lose 80 pounds, and tweeted in September 2010 that she had just 30 more to go.


Ricki Lake

Weight played a key role in the actress’s big break in 1988’s Hairspray, where she portrayed chubby Tracy Turnblad.

But Lake, now 42, struggled throughout the next 20 years, losing an extreme 100 pounds in 1992 by "starving" herself, she said. However, after limiting calories more responsibly and joining a fresh-food delivery service, she shed 140 pounds and maintains a healthy size 6.

randy-jacksonRandy Jackson

In 2002, the American Idol judge weighed over 300 pounds. The music legend, 54, struggled to keep his diabetes under control and opted for gastric bypass surgery in 2003.

He lost 100 pounds and has kept it off by eating fewer processed foods, cutting back on fat and sugar, and spending more time walking on his treadmill and playing tennis.

Sara Rue

The 32-year-old actress dropped 50 pounds after joining Jenny Craig and taking up running.

Since becoming a Jenny Craig spokesperson, Rue has carefully maintained her size 6 frame. "I’m done losing weight," she told People magazine.

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Surprising Celebrity BMIs

With plenty of cash to hire personal trainers and private chefs, Hollywood's hottest have all the tools in place for perfect health. But if you judge celebrities' fitness only by BMI, or body mass index, the numbers tell a different story.

BMI looks at height and weight to measure a person's body fatness, placing them in four broad categories: underweight (18.5 or lower), normal weight (18.5 to 24.9), overweight (25 to 29.9), and obese (30 and up). Some life insurance companies look at BMI measurements in considering the cost of coverage. But is this really an accurate measure of body composition?

weight-scale-questionOften the numbers don't add up

For athletes with loads of lean muscle mass, BMI measurements can be misleading because the scale doesn't differentiate between muscle and fat. That means that the world's top sports stars are often classified as overweight. But even the trimmest actors—particularly the shorter ones—aren't immune to confusing BMI classifications.

We asked our top two nutrition experts to put BMI to the test with seven celebrities. Registered dietitians Frances Largeman-Roth and Julie Upton, both members of the American Dietetic Association, analyzed photos of these stars. Keeping heights in mind, they offered their best estimates of their weights, and we started crunching the numbers.

angelina-jolie Angelina Jolie

Estimated BMI: 17.9

The mother of six must stay lean chasing after her growing brood: At 5'8", our experts say she probably weighs about 118 lbs.

Though many people envy her beauty and accomplishments, her estimated BMI of 17.9 suggests she'd be an even better role model if she gained some weight.

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Estimated BMI: 30.8

This former bodybuilder and Terminator star is the poster child for physical fitness. But surprise! He's "obese"—at least according to his BMI. He stands tall at 6'2" and our experts say Schwarzenegger probably weighs in at about 240 lbs., which would give him a super-high BMI of 30.8.

Schwarzenegger shouldn't sign up for a weight-loss program just yet. All that muscle mass can yield a misleading BMI. "I'm hoping that we'll find another easy calculation to replace BMI soon," says Largeman-Roth. "After all, it was developed in the 1800s."


tom-cruiseEstimated BMI: 21

This "Bootylicious" songstress gets called curvy by the tabloids, but by BMI standards, she's perfectly proportioned. Our experts estimate that Beyonce is a svelte 130 lbs. At 5'6", that gives her an estimated BMI of 21—well within the "normal" range.

So if Beyonce's BMI is right on target, what about all the super-skinny celebs that make her seem shapely?

Tom Cruise

Estimated BMI: 26

He may not be scaling mountains in his movies anymore, but there's nothing wrong with Cruise's current physique—or is there?

The 5'7" star clocks in at an estimated 166 lbs. With a corresponding BMI of 26, he'd be considered "overweight."

Tony Romo

Estimated BMI: 28.8

Whatever you think about his performance on the field, it's hard to deny that Romo's body is pretty perfect. But if you go by BMI standards, the Dallas Cowboys quarterback is "significantly overweight." He's listed at 6'2" and 224 lbs., giving him a BMI of 28.8.

"A better measurement of an athlete’s body composition includes a comparison of lean body mass to body fat," says Largeman-Roth.

serena-williamsSerena Williams

Estimated BMI: 22.1

Not all athletes seem to totter on the edge of obesity. This super-fit tennis sensation has a BMI of 22.1, which is well within the normal range.

At 5'9", her competition weight has recently been just 150 lbs., meaning she packs on a whole lot of muscle and practically zero fat.

Jennifer Love Hewitt

jennifer-love-hewittEstimated BMI: 21.9

She's made headlines for some unflattering bikini photos, but the former Party of Five star has nothing to hide.

Our experts say she probably weighs about 120 lbs. At just 5'2", and with an estimated BMI of 21.9, that's perfectly fine for her frame.

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101 celebrity life secrets: Health for happiness

62 Deep cleanse
Actress Megan Fox drinks a mixture of water and raw apple cider vinegar.
“It cleans out your system entirely,” Megan says. “For women who retain water from your menstrual cycle, it ­gets rid of it really fast.”

63Go green
“Drink green tea. Do it instead of snacking!” shapely Gwyneth Paltrow advises. Gwynnie kicks off every day with a cup.

64Don’t burn the candle
“When I’m working hard, ­I don’t party. I just go to bed,” Helen Mirren admits. “I try to sleep as much as possible. It gets even more important as you get older.”

65Get your moles checked
Melanoma runs in Desperate Housewives’ star Marcia Cross’s family. “I understand the importance of skin cancer detection and protection,” she says.
“I take extra care to protect myself with a large hat, sunglasses, daily UV protection and annual screening.”

66Check your breasts monthly
“Even if you’re in your 20s and eat right and exercise, you’re still at risk of breast cancer,” says ­Kelly Clarkson.

67Have regular smears
TV presenter Christine Bleakley once received an abnormal smear result but further tests came back negative.
“I go for regular smear tests,” she says. “I’m a ‘bury my head in the sand’ girl but I’m now better about dealing with health issues.”

68Keep hydrated
Jennifer Aniston’s number one health tip is: “Water, water, water! I drink three litres each day.”

69Grow your own
Nicole Kidman grows organic food in her garden. “We just planted our vegetables for the summer and all we have at the moment is lettuce,” she says.
“I’m hoping the sweetcorn will be beautiful because I love eating corn out of the garden.”

70Quit smoking
Knocked Up star Katherine Heigl recently ditched the habit to set ­an example for her daughter Naleigh. “Now I use an electronic cigarette. It’s ridiculous, but it’s helping me not to smoke real ones,” Heigl admits. “Smoking sucks!”

71Get to know your family history
Lupus – an autoimmune disease – runs in Lady Gaga’s family, so the singer sensibly got herself tested. “I was borderline positive,” says Gaga. “Lupus is in my family so I have to take care of myself.”

72 A problem shared
Mental health problems are nothing to be ashamed of and it can help to talk. Megan Fox has spoken out about suffering from obsessive-compulsive disorder, and can’t deal with dirt. “This is a sickness – I have an illness,” she says.

73Create some me-time
“We’re so busy taking care of partners and kids that it can all get on top of us,” says TV presenter Lorraine Kelly. “It’s important to take care of you.”

74Smile, smile, smile
Elle Macpherson says: “I want to be around for a long time. This means getting lots of sleep, eating properly and laughing a lot.”

75Be pale and proud
“I’ve realised it’s not just a tan, it’s life or death,” says Girls Aloud’s Nicola Roberts. “It’s that serious.”

76Know when to ask for help
Christina Ricci admits she’s suffered from depression and an eating disorder, but therapy has helped get both under control. “Sometimes people need to seek help,” says Christina. “I’ve discovered you can choose happiness.”

77 Munch on multivitamins
Kelly Osbourne uses supplements to ensure she's getting the nutrients she needs. She was snapped with a Wellness Pack, which contains a 30-day supply of vitamins.

78 Make every day a D-day
Rachel Stevens regularly takes vitamin D supplements because: "We simply don't get enough sunshine in this country!"Vitamin D forms under the skin in reaction to sunlight and helps to keep bones and teeth nice and healthy.

79 B-clever
"I can't live without my vitamin B," says Penelope Cruz, who takes vitamin B supplements to control sweet cravings and improve her mood.

80 Count to three
Model and radio DJ Lisa Snowdon takes an omega-3 supplement, which is good for the heart and is also thought to help mop up free radicals that can cause wrinkles.

81 Prenatal power
What's the key to Gwyneth Paltrow's luscious locks? "It's vitamins," Gwyneth says. "Take New Chapter Organics Perfect Prenatal." £23.39, from health stores
Staying young and beautiful
If anyone's qualified to offer words of wisdom on looking gorgeous and fighting wrinkles it's these stars...

82 Don't overdo it
"Choose to wear make-up on your eyes or lips - not both," says Cat Deeley.

83 Keep it all natural
"One thing I've learned is less is more with make-up," says Beyonce.

84 Don't neglect eyebrows
"It's an inexpensive trick but always pluck and shape your eyebrows. They really frame your face," says Alesha Dixon.

85 Raid the kitchen cupboard
Julia Roberts says she soaks her nails in olive oil to keep them healthy while moisturising the skin on her fingers at the same time.

86 Always carry blotting papers
"I blot one last time before I get out of the car," says model Heidi Klum. "Otherwise there's no way I'd be looking good an hour later."

87 Mix up your own base
"When it comes to make-up, blend and mix colours to find a favourite," Ugly Betty's Vanessa Williams says.

88 Try a miracle product
Celebrities such as Cheryl Cole, actress Penelope Cruz and OC star Rachel Bilson all swear by miracle-worker Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream, £25 from Boots.

89 Use base on your lips
"Dab a little foundation over your lips to tone down the redness," advises Heroes actress Hayden Panettiere.

90 The perfect red pout
"To make my red lips last I apply a matt dry base and something creamy and moist on top," says singer Gwen Stefani.

91 Cheat a natural glow
"To make my lips look naturally pink, I put on red lipstick then wipe it off and apply clear gloss," Halle Berry recommends.

92 Get lippy with liner
"If you plan to be out all night, bring a lip pencil with you to reshape and colour in your lips, then throw a gloss on top," advises Scarlett Johansson.

93 Pamper pouts
Scarlett Johansson also carries a tin of Vaseline Lip Therapy (£1.32 from Boots) to keep lips smooth.

94 Lash out
"Take a hairdryer to your eyelash curler before using them to make them curl better," says Isla Fisher.

95 Create the perfect cat eye
"Have a steady hand when using eyeliner," Christina Aguilera says.

96 Set your make-up
"After adding foundation and blush, dust with powder, mist with rose water spray, then lay a Kleenex over your face for a few seconds," says Liv Tyler.
Skin wisdom
Every star has a secret "miracle worker" - why not steal one of these...

97 Scrub for less
"I don't spend money on fancy exfoliators," says model and presenter Kelly Brook. "Instead, I use cheap exfoliating gloves and scrub along with some normal shower gel. I don't do anything more than that."

98 Zap out pesky zits
Cheryl Cole swears that Sudocrem (£2.80 from Boots) - a product which is designed to heal nappy rash - is the best thing for drying up and drawing out spots. "It really works!" she says, which explains why she always looks so flawless.

99 Soothe puffy skin
"It sounds old-fashioned," says Kate Hudson. "But my mum, Goldie Hawn, told me this one years ago and it really works. "Take a bowl, fill it up with ice and then wash your face with it. You'll find that poof - the puff is soon gone."

100 Try out a cult classic cream
Kylie Minogue has revealed the secret to her youthful looks - Pond's Cold Cream. Try Pond's Triple Action Moisturiser from Boots, £4.07. "It really has changed my skin," she gushes. "My mum swears by it."

101 Have a bedtime routine
"Make sure you always remove your make-up before going to bed and try using witch hazel as a toner," advises actress Keira Knightley.

Continue to Read more ...

Great People Sleep Less?

Six to eight hours per day is the average amount of sleep a person needs. That's about one-third of a lifetime! As a population, we sleep about 1 to 1.5 hours less than we did 100 years ago. Scientists say that sleeping 7 – 8 hours a day is normal, if you sleep less, your health can suffer from that. Though sleep requirements vary from person to person - some people are naturally short or long sleepers.

My norm is 7 hours a day, though if I sleep 6 hours I won’t see any difference. But if I sleep less I will be sleepy. And I like to take an afternoon nap that usually lasts 15-30 minutes. I feel refreshed after it:)
Recently I’ve read that some great people slept less than we usually do, for instance, da Vinci slept only 1.5 – 2 hours a day. How is it possible?! I’ve started to wonder if my 7 hours a day is just a habit and I can sleep less. Or is it what my body really needs? The thought of having extra hours added to my working time has inspired me to find out more about it.

I've found some information about sleeping habits of great people who are considered to be extraordinary sleepers. What can I say? There are so many myths and legends around them that it's difficult to say something for sure. But I'll try to write the most interesting facts in this article.

Leonardo da Vinci

Some sources claim that the legendary artist Leonardo Da Vinci was able to stay awake and alert almost 22 hours of every day, all the while working on brilliant artworks and inventions. He slept only 1.5 - 2 hours a day taking a nap 15 - 20 minutes for every four hours that he was awake.
Nowadays this sleeping system is called polyphasic sleep. Its followers try to use it and say that the system works fine for them. However its opponents say that da Vinci sleeping habit is just a myth, there are no trusted sources to confirm this fact about great artist.
Lifetime: 67 years

Nikola Tesla

One of the greatest inventors claimed to sleep just 2 - 3 hours a day.

"I do not think there is any thrill that can go through the human heart like that felt by the inventor as he sees some creation of the brain unfolding to success... Such emotions make a man forget food, sleep, friends, love, everything."
~ Nikola Tesla
"Tesla who could indeed work throughout the night, would often crash for the entire day of sleep after his exploits. He exhibited classic signs of manic creativity, which might have been interrupted by short recuperative naps or long recovery sleep. Otherwise, Tesla was nothing more than a short sleeper."
Lifetime: 87 years

Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson is considered to be a polyphasic sleeper. He slept only 2 hours a day.
Though, in letters to Doctor Vine Utley (1819), Thomas Jefferson writes about his sleep habits. We can conclude that his sleep was not very regular, he would go to sleep at different times (often late into the night), he would always devote at least 30 min. to creative reading before sleep, he would fall asleep later if the reading was of particular interest, and he would regularly wake up at sunrise.
Lifetime: 83

Thomas Edison

The great scientist remarked that he slept less than 5 hours a night.

"Most people overeat 100 percent, and oversleep 100 percent, because they like it. That extra 100 percent makes them unhealthy and inefficient. The person who sleeps eight or ten hours a night is never fully asleep and never fully awake - they have only different degrees of doze through the twenty-four hours."

~ Thomas Edison
"Edison's contempt for sleep is well documented. Yet it can only be attributed to his ignorance. Little was known about the biological role of sleep at his time. He believed wrongly that, as with food, humans will always sleep more than necessary given a opportunity. As a natural short sleeper, he believed long sleep is a sign of laziness. His co-workers noted that Edison actually slept far more than he would like to admit. Clearly, he would carry sleeping little as a badge of honor. He catnapped a lot, and his nap cots have been preserved to this day in Edison museums."

While working in his lab, he allowed himself almost no sleep for days. He kept a small cot in one corner and grabbed only a few minutes here and there to sustain him. A famous picture shows him stretched out fast asleep on the top of a workbench. Edison never discouraged this type of representation of himself, and newspaper photographers happily took the bait. Edison was known to sleep for an entire day, waking only to take a light meal, and then it was back to bed.
Lifetime: 84 years

Sir Isaac Newton

Sir Isaac Newton needed 3-4 hours of sleep daily.

He worked so long and hard, often without sleep for days that he became ill from exhaustion.
"He was suddenly struck by an amazing thought. Perhaps the moon was trying to fall to earth (a much larger mass than the moon). Perhaps there was some other force preventing it from doing so. What if the centrifugal force pulling the moon away from the earth was perfectly balanced with gravity force pulling the moon toward the earth? If that were true it might also account for the movement of the earth around the sun, in fact all the planets. How about the entire universe? Wow! What a concept. No wonder he couldn’t sleep."
Lifetime: 84

Napoleon Bonaparte

Some sources say that Napoleon slept only from 12 p.m. to 2 a.m., and then he woke up, worked and went to bed again at 5 a.m. and woke up at 7 a.m. It means he slept only 4 hours a night.

"Different subjects and different affairs are arranged in my head as in a cupboard. When I wish to interrupt one train of thought, I shut that drawer and open another. Do I wish to sleep, I simply close all the drawers and then I am - asleep."

~ Napoleon Bonaparte
Some publications claim that he advocated 6 hours of sleep a night for men and 6 for women.
The officers of Napoleon have reported that even in a battlefield after long hours, Napoleon had the amazing ability to energize himself within half an hour. He handed over his command to his subordinates giving them instructions that he was not to be disturbed under any circumstances for the next half an hour. Then stretching out in his tent he would enter into scientific sleep and precisely within half an hour he would come out energized, fresh and ready again for an action.
"He is indeed said to have slept little and frequently suffer from insomnia at times of great stress. He was also often interrupted by messengers that might perhaps increase his propensity to napping at daylight. Yet he was to be woken up only with bad news. The hard rule was that the good news could wait. His memoirs indicate that he did not mind dying young. Consequently, he would disregard his doctors on the matter of sleeping little and drinking buckets of strong coffee. As Napoleon's life was jam-packed with stress, his short sleep might have been a consequence of his lifestyle. Low sleep diet did not translate well to Napoleon's military skills. Some contemporaries attribute his errors at Waterloo to sleep deprivation. Yet, during slower days he would sleep for sound seven hours, waking up at 7 and often lazing until 8. Then he would yet add a nap in the afternoon. Records also indicate that at Saint Helena he was a normal sleeper, and while stress was replaced with boredom, he often slept late."
Lifetime: 52

Benjamin Franklin

Some sources claim that Benjamin Franklin slept 2-4 hours a night.
Though we all know his famous quote: "Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise."
Actually, Franklin’s reputation regarding limiting sleep is closely akin to his reputation for frugality – "A penny saved is a penny earned," and all that. Sleep is something that is natural, but has the potential for being misused. (Too much of a good thing, in other words.) In Franklin’s day, industriousness and hard work were extremely important human virtues. Edison adopted Franklin’s philosophy as well, and in both cases, it was important for them to model their behavior in a way that suggested that they didn’t sleep very much. To them, it meant that they were diligent and demanding in their lives, and never lazy in any way. In Franklin’s autobiography, he explains his quest (tongue-in-cheek) for moral perfection. In his principles for order, Franklin offered appropriate activities for each hour of the day. In his thesis, Franklin allocated only 4 hours of sleep per night. This tenet is the most often quoted reference to the myth of Franklin’s lack of sleep.
"There will be sleeping enough in the grave."
~ Benjamin Franklin
Franklin “caught up” on his sleep, logging many hours “in the sack” after bouts of sleepless activity.
Lifetime: 84

Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill was said to sleep 5 hours a night on average, but he did at least advocate a substantial daily nap on top of that modest allowance.
He would wake at 8, spend the morning in bed reading papers, dictating letters, etc., take a long nap at tea time, and work till as late as 3 am. He averaged 5-6 hours of sleep per day.
"You must sleep sometime between lunch and dinner, and no halfway measures. Take off your clothes and get into bed. That's what I always do. Don't think you will be doing less work because you sleep during the day. That's a foolish notion held by people who have no imaginations. You will be able to accomplish more. You get two days in one - well, at least one and a half."

~ Winston Churchill
His naps were 1.5 to 2 hours long, for a total of about 8 hours a day!
Winston Churchill had twin beds and when he couldn't fall asleep in one he changed to the other one.

Lifetime: 91

Albert Einstein

The story goes that Albert Einstein liked to sleep 10 hours a night - unless he was working very hard on an idea; then it was 11. He claimed that his dreams helped him to invent.
Also he felt that naps "refreshed the mind" and that they helped him to be more creative.
Lifetime: 76 years

Calvin Coolidge

Calvin Coolidge slept 8 hours a night, plus 2 or 3 hours in the afternoon. In fact, his very first act as president of the United States was to go to sleep. It is said that Calvin Coolidge got more sleep in the White House than any other president.

Lifetime: 61 years

As you can see it's difficult to say for sure who was a real polyphasic sleeper. And it's difficult to claim that sleeping less is a precondition to being successful in life:) So, I've stopped my little research and never changed my sleeping habit. No extra hours has been added to my working time though I try to work more efficiently, I think this will help me more.

Now I understand that it doesn't matter how much you have but it does matter how you use what you have. And I think that everyone should listen to his body and feel what it really needs. Do not be too lazy to sleep more than you need and do not be too hard-working to neglect your health.
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