Two Plus Two Equals Four!!!

My water broke around 3:30 that Sunday afternoon. Since I’d been in ‘barely there’ labor since 9 in the morning, everything was ready and already by the door. I quickly put on the blue dress that boyfriend was ironing at the time and we rushed out...

Modern Mom Can't Cook

The food had just started boiling when I heard a knock on the door. My pocket was hurting that day; I only had 4 shillings to my name. Not one to despair, I was contented working with what I had – rice, potatoes and an onion. Without the tomatoes to at least add some color, I was prepared to have some very bland lunch. But it was ok, ...

Biggest Baby Expenses and How to Save on Them

Though the spending on the new baby is inevitable, there are steps you can take to ensure that you keep the costs at a minimum. In this post, we look at the biggest baby expenses and how to save on them ...

I am Selfish

There’s a long hoot and I’m screaming his name at the top of my lungs. In that split second, I see my life come to an end. I see myself losing my best friend barely two days after his coming home. I see him robbed of life right before my very eyes...

Are you Making these six Parenting Mistakes?

Parenting would be easier if it came with a manual. We all have different parenting styles and none can be said to be better than the other. There are however mistakes we all make as parents, sometimes coming from a very good place.In this post we discuss six major parenting mistakes.

Dealing with Unwarranted Parenting Advice

Being different is ok. We are all special in one way or another. This memo, however, did not get to the perfection bullies. When your child is a little different, they’ll make it their business to tell you what you probably did wrong to end up where you are, and come up with so many solutions to your problem your head will spin.

Melina's Messy Updo

A messy updo comes in handy when I need to do a simple hairstyle in little to no time. I have found that it works best on freshly washed hair as the curls are more defined then. You do not even have to comb it. Just shampoo, condition, moisturize, oil and style :-)

Of Housegirls and Parenting

She called early Sunday morning telling me that she was in town but when I went to get her, my calls went unanswered. Thirty missed calls later, I could not reach her. Thinking that her phone must have run out of charge, I now had the hectic task of looking for her in a crowded town via footsteps the way it used to be done like 3 presidents ago ...

Goodbye Ceskycess. Hello, Modern Mom.

When I started blogging, I had no idea what I wanted to say. I therefore wrote some really pathetic posts and prayed that no one would ever read them. A few months later, a love interest did some stalking, found my blog and read the half-baked posts. To please me (I think), he praised and gushed my writing.

Merck Foundation Established

Merck Foundation Logo
  • New Foundation aims to improve health and well-being of people and advance lives through science and technology in developing countries and underserved communities
  • Rasha Kelej appointed Chief Executive Officer of the Merck Foundation

Darmstadt, Germany, June 20th, 2017 – Merck, a leading science and technology company, today announced the establishment of the Merck Foundation. Through this foundation Merck combines many of its corporate responsibility activities under one roof and considerably expands its scope to address health, social and economic challenges of the 21st century.

“The vision of the new foundation is a world where everyone can lead a healthy and fulfilling life, also those living under disadvantaged conditions,” said Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the new foundation. “With the Merck Foundation we will continue our commitment towards improving access to innovative healthcare solutions in underserved communities, building healthcare and scientific research capacity and advancing people’s lives through science and technology.”

Dr. Rasha Kelej -CEO of Merck Foundation
The Merck Foundation will focus on initiatives that will contribute towards the Sustainable Development Goals outlined by the United Nations. To achieve the foundations’ goals, we will develop and implement coherent strategies, result-oriented programs and initiatives, provide grants to support projects and help raise funds where needed, said Rasha Kelej, who has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of the Merck Foundation. Kelej (45) joined Merck in 1996, working exclusively in positions relevant to Corporate Responsibility and Market Development with a strong focus on Africa and developing countries.

Dr. Rasha Kelej


The Merck Foundation is a non-profit limited liability company (gemeinnützige Gesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung / gGmbH). A Board of Trustees, chaired by Stangenberg-Haverkamp, will advise and monitor the foundation’s performance. Stefan Oschmann, Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of Merck, and Belén Garijo, member of the Executive Board of Merck and CEO Healthcare, are also members of the Board of Trustees.

About Merck Foundation
The Merck Foundation, established in 2017, is a philanthropic organization that aims to improve the health and wellbeing of people and advance their lives through science and technology. Our efforts are primarily focused on improving access to innovative healthcare solutions in underserved communities, building healthcare and scientific research capacity and empowering people in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) with a special focus on women and youth.


All Merck Press Releases are distributed by e-mail at the same time they become available on the Merck Website. Please go to www.merckgroup.com/subscribe to register online, change your selection or discontinue this service.

About Merck
Merck is a leading science and technology company in healthcare, life science and performance materials. Around 50,000 employees work to further develop technologies that improve and enhance life – from biopharmaceutical therapies to treat cancer or multiple sclerosis, cutting-edge systems for scientific research and production, to liquid crystals for smartphones and LCD televisions. In 2016, Merck generated sales of € 15.0 billion in 66 countries.

Founded in 1668, Merck is the world's oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company. The founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed corporate group. Merck holds the global rights to the Merck name and brand. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the company operates as EMD Serono, MilliporeSigma and EMD Performance Materials.


Until we see each other again, 


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Leisure Sitting Increases Cancer Risk in Women, Study Determines

Image Credit:Pixabay.com
Though hard to tell what exactly causes cancer, studies are carried everyday that determine factors that increase the risk of developing this deadly disease. Obesity, smoking, chemicals, alcohol, radiation and sun exposure are just some of the factors that increase the amounts of free radicals in the body, leading to higher risks of different types of cancers.

According to a recent study, you can now add leisure sitting to the list as one of the factors increasing the risk of multiple myeloma, breast and ovarian cancers in women. 

In the study that ran between 1992 and 2009, the lifestyles of 146,000 individuals were analyzed. Though they all started cancer free, 31,000 individuals developed cancer in the course of the study. According to the results, cancer development increased by 10% when more leisure time was spent sitting. The sitting time however did not affect the men as far as the cancer risk was concerned.

The weird part is that the sitting had nothing to do with decreased physical activity as this factor was accounted for as well. Dr. Stephanie Bernik, Chief of Surgical Oncology at Lenox Hill Hospital, New York City said that it is still not clear why leisure sitting would increase the risk of cancer if not a marker for decreased physical activity. She stated that there is need to carry out further research if this is to be explained scientifically.

According to Dr. Paolo Bofetta, a Professor of Preventive Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, reducing the sitting time in individuals across all weight categories can go a long way in preventing not only cancers but other chronic diseases. The beneficial effects of physical activities cannot be overemphasized.


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3 Reasons you Should Encourage Your Kids to Take More Fiber

Image credit: pixabay.com
Fiber is the potion of food that remains unchanged after digestion. It is therefore passed in the stool the same way it was ingested. Foods high in fiber include vegetables, fruits and whole grains. Unfortunately, most kids, just like adults, do not like these foods. It is however very important that you encourage them to take it form an early age. You can use this technique to ensure that your picky eater cultivates the habit of eating healthier.

Below are the health benefits of taking more fiber:
  • It ensures steady and faster movement of food through the bowels. This prevents constipation and all conditions associated with constipation e.g. hemorrhoids, diverticulitis and anus cracks.
  • It occupies space and helps to create a feeling of fullness, meaning we can eat less and stay full for longer. This is critical in ensuring a steady body weight by controlling caloric intake.
  • Though not well understood, it has been proven that fiber helps to reduce incidence of colorectal cancer. Communities that consume foods with a lot of fiber have almost no incidence of colorectal cancer, whereas those that have a diet low in fibre have much higher colorectal cancer incidence.

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Homemade Facial Masks: Banana Face mask

Most women around the globe have a problem of dry, rough and lifeless skins. Everyday environmental and natural conditions such as the dust, the sun, moisture-robbing soaps, stress and age all play a part in the deteriorating conditions of the skin. The outcome is dry, itchy skin that is prone to acne, premature wrinkles, blackheads and even whiteheads. This can be fixed easily with the use of good homemade facial masks.

Though different facials and products are available to combat these problems and leave one with a smooth, sleek face, this could prove to be too expensive for most people. The products also contain harsh and at times harmful chemicals that are not good for the skin in the long run. It therefore becomes increasingly hard for most women to maintain a healthy, youthful face. Fortunately for us, we can get all the benefits of expensive facials straight from the kitchen by using homemade facial masks. All this without the harsh side effects of some of the manufactured products. Some excellent homemade facial masks are banana natural face mask and avocado face mask.

Image credit: Pixabay.com
Let's now talk about mother nature's gift to humanity; the banana. Rich in Potassium, Magnesium and Vitamin A, bananas are good at nourishing and moisturizing the skin leaving it supple, hydrated and beautiful. The potassium promotes the growth of new cells; Magnesium is essential when it comes to slowing down the aging process of the skin; while vitamin A protects the skin from free radical damage in addition to speeding up the cell renewal process .

Bananas are also very rich in antioxidants which remove toxins from the body thus preventing and healing of conditions such as acne. It's antibacterial properties on the other hand help in clearing blemishes, scars and black spots. A banana facial is therefore extremely effective when it comes to restoring the natural glow to the skin.

The facial can be made with a number of other natural ingredients such as honey, oatmeal or yogurt depending on the type of the skin one has. For the dry skin, honey and oatmeal is added to the facial. The oatmeal exfoliates the skin while the honey moisturises and conditions it. For the oily skin the preferred ingredient is the natural yogurt.

Ingredients

- One ripe banana
- 1/4 cup plain yogurt
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1/4 cup oatmeal
- Coffee grinder
- A mixer or a small Shallow bowl and a fork

Directions:
  • Step 1
Place the peeled banana into the mixer and blend it evenly. You can also place the banana in the shallow bowl and use the fork to mash it to a smooth consistency.
  • Step 2
In the bowl, mix the banana paste, the honey and just enough yogurt such that the mixture does not run.
  • Step 3
Put the oatmeal in the coffee grinder and grind to a fine powder.
  • Step 4
Mix the powdered oatmeal into the banana mixture until it is evenly creamy. Mix gently to prevent the mask from running.
  • Step 5
Apply the homemade facial mask on the face and neck and leave it on for 15-20 minutes
  • Step 6
Rinse the homemade facial mask off your face with cold water and pat your face dry making sure you do not rub as this will remove the natural oils leaving the skin dry.


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One More Reason Why You Should Let Your Vagina Clean Itself

Image credit: Pixabay.com
Thousands of Women still douche despite assurances from health practitioners that a healthy vagina has an effective self cleaning mechanism. Douching not only has few known benefits, it also increases the risk of reproductive system's infections in women like the pelvic inflammatory disease, cervical cancer, bacterial vaginosis as well as pregnancy complications. This is according to Ami Zota, a Milken School of Public Health at George Washington University researcher, and the lead study author of a small research that sort to explore the connection between douching and two industial chemicals commonly found in cosmetic products, DEP and di-n-butyl phthalate (DnBP).

The 739 women who took part in the study were between 20 and 49 years, more than half of them being obese or overweight. Though many of the women said they had not douched in 6 months, a large percentage admitted to douching at least twice a month, a majority being black women.

Urine tests were done to determine the phthalate exposure and the more the women douched, the higher their exposure to a form of diethyl phthalate (DEP). According to Zota, phthalatesare chemicals of concern to women's health as they are suspected to be endocrine disruptors and can alter the action of important hormones such as testosterone, estrogen and thyroid hormones.

Women who reported to have douched at least once in the last month had 52% higher concentrations of DEP while those who had douched at least twice a month had 152% higher levels than women who do not douche.


No connection was found between douching and di-n-butyl phthalate (DnB), just like there was no link between DEP and other feminine hyegine products like tampons, pads, sprays, powder, sanitary towels or towelettes.

Reading the label to determine whether douching products contain phthalates is absolutely unnecessary. Unless instructed by your doctor to do so while treating a vaginal infection, women should not douche at all as this disrupts the normal levels of healthy bacteria, said Dr. Sten Vermund, assistant vice chancellor for global health at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.


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Kenyan Mom Bloggers

Mom Bloggers in Kenya
Mom bloggers are the most interesting people. They give you a glimpse into the exciting, satisfying and sometimes messy world of parenting. It is always nice to connect with other moms; women who can relate to what you are going through as far as motherhood is concerned.
 
I have been discovering great mom blogs I never knew existed lately, and here's what I have discovered so far in no particular order. I'll be updating this list of Mom Bloggers in Kenya periodically. 

I can use your help. If you notice that I have left out your favorite mom blog, or if you run one and it is not on this list, let me know in the comments section and I'll include it.


  1. Modern Mom Kenya: This is a blog by yours truly. Started in 2015, Modern mom is a parenting blog that discusses motherhood, pregnancy, parenting as well as women and children health.
  2. Afromom: This is a huge blog with contributions from a number of writers. Managed by Njeri anjohi and Olivia Kidula, Afromom is a family blog that focuses on technology, lifestyle, entrepreneurship and parenting topics.
  3. Mummytales: If you love to read about real motherhood issues and mothers narrating about their hardships and parenting experiences, then you will love this blog. Maryanne Waweru started the blog back in 2011 while she was pregnant with her first child. She is now a mother of two.
  4. Kenyan Mom: Kenyan Mom is a platform for Kenyan parents. One unique feature in this blog is The Mom Life where a featured mom gets to share their story with the world.
  5. Diary of The Kenyan Mom: This blog is just that; a diary of a Kenya mom. 
  6. Mama Mzungu: This blog belongs to one Mama Caleb, an expat from the US working and living in Western Kenya. She is a mom of two.
  7. Mama Mgeni: Her name might be Mama Mgeni, but this mom now calls Nairobi home. She's also originally from the US.
  8. Still A Mum: This is a blog that celebrates women who have dealt with a miscarriage, still birth and infant loss.
Image Credit:Pixabay.com

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Six Habits that Might Sabotage your Weight loss

These 6 habits might be sabotaging your weight loss efforts
Bad habits are developed slowly either consciously or unconsciously. While some bad habits are harmless, others are serious and could prove detrimental to our health. There are simple things we do that can sabotage our weight loss efforts. You might exercise religiously and eat {low fat foods}, but the habits we discuss below will still lead to weight gain.

Eyeballing recipe ingredients

While a “splash” of oil or a “pinch” of brown sugar may work on cooking shows, it can lead to the consumption of excess calories in diet. For instance, you might think that the splash of olive oil is close enough to the called for tablespoon, but the truth of the matter is that overdoing it adds hundreds of calories. Ensure that you always use measuring spoons and cups when preparing your meals.

Using too much grease

Cooking sprays and grease is one other culprit when it comes to unnecessary calories. While sprays could provide a practical way of making your pans non-sticky, they could be working against you and messing with your intentions of losing weight. Use non-stick pans or try lining your cookware with aluminum foil or baking sheets. 

Eating from the bag

Eating your snacks straight from the package never ends well. It is very hard to know when enough is enough. It is a lot worse when the bag is big. Your mind will have a distorted perception of just how much you are consuming. Portioning leftovers and snacks into reasonable sizes puts the control back into your hands. 

Leaving leftover food on the stove during meals

Most households do this: You cook, and then you sit down to enjoy your meal leaving the leftovers on the stove. This habit makes it easier to go back for extra portions you do not necessarily need. Before settling down for your meal, try transferring the leftovers from the pots to storage containers.

Putting fruits and vegetables away from sight

Produce drawers are often hidden from sight. Unfortunately, they say that out of sight is ultimately out of mind. When it is time to snack, you will often go for the treat that is easiest to access. Keeping the fruits and veggies on top of the refrigerator or on the counter in a fruit basket ensures that you snack healthily. 

Offering East Treats in Bowl

Many households have a serving bowl full of unhealthy snacks, candy and nuts. This offers instant gratification and lots of unnecessary calories. It is a good idea to ditch the bowl if you need to see weight loss results. A compromise might be replacing the treats with ones that are hard to eat or are a whole lot healthier. Think about fruits that offer a wealth of nutrition and fill you a lot faster. Apples are perfect examples.

It is never too late to break a habit. If you do one of these things, try establishing healthier habits. If you have the will power, you can make small adjustments that will ensure you practice a healthier lifestyle.

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DIY Gone Bad

Update: I first published this post in April 2012. And now that I do the math, I was 2 weeks pregnant with my first born daughter. I hope I've not lost all the silliness. :-) :-)

There once were two little bears. Though they liked each other very much, the cubs were both very competitive and selfish.

One day as they were playing in the ice, they found a big, juicy fruit. The only problem was that each wanted to have the fruit by himself. They therefore argued over who was entitled to the fruit until a fox came to their rescue.

‘How about you share the fruit?’ he suggested to them.

And they liked the idea.

So the fox split the fruit into two but when he was about to give it to them, he realized that one half was bigger than the other. Again, the bears started fighting over who’d get the bigger share.

But the cunning fox had a solution. He told them that he’d make the pieces equal by biting a tiny piece from the bigger fruit. And he did! But his bite was a little too big, making the remaining piece smaller than the initially smaller piece.

Again, the cubs started fighting and the fox offered to help one more time….

Long story short, the fox ate the entire fruit long before the stupid cubs even realized what was going on.

You’d think that am smarter than the cubs. Well, you’re wrong!

It all started like a month ago, I was in the salon consulting my hair dresser. I’ve been doing a lot of that lately, since I realized that I know so little about hair. I didn’t know that treating hair with ‘protein’ makes it stronger, or that hair frizzes at times, or that hair needs to be moisturized! Who’d have thought?

Well, so I’m there explaining to him how I don’t like plaiting hair for I really hate un-doing it, and he suggests something I had not thought of. ‘Why don’t you put on a weave for a few weeks?’

It sounded like a very intelligent idea, but I’ve heard that guys don’t like synthetic hair. I therefore asked boyfriend whether he’d mind me trying out the look. He told me that he’d be okay as long as the weave was not shiny.

I shopped for the weave in advance. For an average lady, it was averagely priced. But not for me, I felt like it had cost me an arm and three toes. But not to worry, I was changing my look and looking good is all that mattered.

And that’s how Easter’s Sunday found me in the salon having my brand new hair fixed. The expensive 'human' hair did not disappoint. By the time I was back in the house, I looked like a million
hundred bucks.

My hair had never been so long and beautiful and I kept telling anyone who cared to listen boyfriend just that. It’s not like I wanted to brag or anything, but the hair just found ways of coming up in every conversation; and I just could not help it.

We’d be watching the weather forecast and I’d go like, ‘You just don’t know how hard it is to have long hair on a windy day, it keeps covering your face….’

Or I’d see a detergent advert on telly and I’d be like, ‘I don’t know how I’ll be washing my clothes. You know when you have hair as long as mine, but never mind… you wouldn’t get it; yours is short.’

This went on like this the entire evening. I would tell boyfriend how awesome it is to have beautiful hair, and then I would look at myself in the mirror, then comb it , and then I’d look at it in the mirror before talking about it some more.

Those who know me well will tell you that I have very itchy fingers that just want to fix things. There's a medical term for that, itchiosis or fixialism, am not so sure. It's basically a condition where your brain convinces your fingers that they can fix anything. And I mean, anything. (But don't quote me.) This will explain what happened next...

After trying all the styles I could think of, a thought struck my mind, ‘How about I cut it a little, and I’ll have a new style altogether.’

You have to understand that this was the very day that the hair had been made. Seeing the devilish smile on my face, boyfriend immediately knew what was going on in my mind. And the poor guy tried to stop me, ‘Look, don’t do anything tragic, I really like this look. So just keep it for the next two weeks and after that, you can cut it and have a different look. But don’t do it yourself, let the hair dresser do it. ’

And in my head I was thinking, ‘What does he know about hair?’ As it turned out, he knew more than I did!

The following day was Easter Monday and I was not going to work.  Bored from all the hair talk, I think, boyfriend left for the gym in the morning. I had the house hair to myself and the whole day to decide what I would do with it. I therefore tried several styles and in the end, I came to the realization that I had been right the day before. The hair did need to be trimmed a little.

And trimming I did!

It was easy; I just held it into a ponytail, reached behind my head and propelled the scissors into action. When I was done, I took the mirror, closed my eyes and opened them slowly hoping to see a perfectly dressed head staring back at me. What I saw almost made me scream…



I turned the mirror round and round looking for the ‘undo’ button but I could not find it. All I saw was this…

This time my eyes popped out!


Realizing that I could not ‘Ctrl Z’, I took my phone and made a call to boyfriend, ‘I just did something stupid,’ I told him, explaining what I'd just done. I was close to tears at this point.

He told me to not do a thing; he’d come and fix my mess. Again, I should have listened.

The following is a demonstration of what happened next…



I could see that I was on the right path, now if I could just trim it a little on the left... And I did.



What the ...? Anyway, no need to panic. You can still rock this look Cess. You just need to relax. Breath in, out. In, out. Now cut on the right side...



After this, I knew that it was time to just give up :-(

And that is how I managed to ruin my most expensive hairdo in less than 16 hrs!
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Breastfeeding Does Not Cause Sagging Breasts; Find out What Does and how to Work Around it

We have all been told the lies; that to keep your breasts as perky as they were before pregnancy, you should either bottle-feed or wean your baby as soon as they start taking solids. This is a myth  that is not only unfair to the child, but to the mother as well. Nursing, study after study has shown, has little to do with sagging breasts, pregnancy is to blame. If anything, extended breastfeeding (for at least 2 years) will probably help your boob look as close to how they once did as they can. In this article, we look at the common causes of sagging breasts and the measures moms can take to prevent or at least reduce the effects as much as possible.

Image credit: Pixabay.com

Pregnancy


Pregnancy takes a toll on a woman’s body. The breasts increase in size in preparation for nursing later on when the baby is born and this puts immense pressure on the breast’s ligaments. The skin and the tissues are stretched and this result in an empty/sagging look once the milk supply diminishes and the breasts shrink to their original size.  This happens whether you choose to breastfeed your baby or not.

Since there’s no way you are going to avoid pregnancy if you plan to deliver your own babies, the best we can do is reduce the effects of pregnancy on your bosom by wearing well supporting bras, eating a balanced meal full of saturated fats and drinking lots of water to ensure that your skin remains hydrated, moisturized and elastic.

Sudden Weaning


Breastfeeding has been falsely blamed for sagging breasts for years and years. Because of this, most women choose to not breastfeed at all or to wean their babies at 4 or 6 months. This is a point when your baby's demand for milk is very high and as a result, the body is producing the highest amount of milk. Sudden weaning when the breasts are at their largest denies the body the time it needs for the skin to shrink back.

Think about two people who are trying to lose weight using two very different approaches. One goes the surgery way and sheds the pounds in two months while the other one goes the exercise and lifestyle change route and loses the weight in one year.

While both will have shed the pounds at the end of the day, the one who did it in two months will be left with sagging skin while the later will have a toned body under a tight skin. The same applies when nursing. Stopping suddenly reduces the mass of the breast in a week without giving the skin enough time to bounce back.

For the best results, wean your baby when they are at least 2 years and do it gradually. By this time, your weight will have gone down and your milk supply will be at its lowest.

Aging, Sun, and smoking


There are other factors that contribute to sagging that have nothing to do with having babies. Factors such as aging, sun exposure and smoking reduce the skin’s elasticity making it easier for boobs to sag. The size of the breast also matters. The bigger and heavier they are, the more likely they are to submit and surrender to gravity.

Avoiding weight fluctuations and eating a clean diet might help. Exercising may not increase the fat deposits in your boobs, but it strengthens the muscles behind the breast giving them a perkier appearance.

Whatever you do, it is important to remember that your body will change over time. It might bounce back to how it was before pregnancy, it might not. There is no need denying your child the best meal she can ever get for vanity reasons.


Until we see each other again, 
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Why You Don't Need to Eat for Two During Pregnancy

An Australian study has found that a vast majority of women do not achieve a healthy weight during pregnancy. In the comprehensive study that looked at 1.3 million pregnant women worldwide, the researchers from Monash University discovered that more than half of the women gained too much weight during pregnancy, while a quarter did not gain enough.

You should not put on any weight in the first trimester, a little in the second and just a little more in the third
 -Helena Teede
Researchers analyzed over 5,300 international studies of expecting women and found that 38% of women were overweight or obese at the beginning of pregnancy, 55% were ‘normal weight’ and 7% were underweight.

Helena Teede, the lead researcher, reported that the women who started at a higher weight were more likely to gain weight quicker as their pregnancy progressed. ‘You should not put on any weight in the 1st trimester, a little in the 2nd and just a little more in the 3rd trimester,’ she told the Australian media. ‘You should only increase your calorie intake by a small amount. You are not eating for two.’

She warned that women who did not gain enough weight were more likely to have premature births, while those who gained too much were at an increased risk of requiring a caesarean birth. She said that the study highlighted the need for strategies to monitor and optimize healthy weight in expectant mothers, insisting that weight during pregnancy needs to be closely monitored and women provided with support to improve their lifestyle.

Health professionals need to be trained and encouraged to have ‘healthy conversations’ with pregnant women on how to introduce simple yet effective lifestyle interventions to support them before, during and after pregnancy.


Until we see each other again, 


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The Rubber Band Hack That's Taken Parenting World by Storm


As a work-from-home-mom of an infant and a pre-schooler, I find that I lose my cool more often than I would like. While it’s easy to excuse my infant’s bad behavior, I am not always as patient with my four and a half year old. Things, especially, get really ugly during meal times when she just refuses to chew or even open her mouth. 

At times I get angry and frustrated, yell at my daughter only to regret a minute later. I have asked other moms close to me severally whether there are times when they feel like bad moms. All of them have said that they do. As hard as we try not to go over the edge, there are times when it’s really difficult especially when dealing with inconsiderate little beings who know how to push your every button.  The fact that I’m in good company does not mean that it is OK to lose my patience with my kids. I would like to be as understanding and mature with my pre-schooler as I am with her younger sister or even their dad. 

Seems like I am not alone! When one mom explained on Facebook how she is using the rubber band method to parent more positively, the post quickly went viral. Shauna Harvey got the idea from Idealist Mom blog. She decided to try the method in hopes of being less angry and stressed about her 4 year old son’s disrespectful behavior. Her Facebook post about her experiment and the results has been liked over 5,000 times, shared over 11,000 times and has more than 1,000 comments.

This is how the Rubber Band Method Works


Image Credit: Pixabay
Wear five rubber bands on the wrist of the hand you use the most from the time your child wakes up to the time they go to bed. Do not leave then on overnight as the idea is to make you aware of the bands. If you leave them on indefinitely, they become a part of you and you no longer take notice.

The rubber bands serve as a physical reminder to the parent not to lose his/her cool.

Each time you get angry and yell or say something unkind to your child, move one of the rubber bands to the other wrist. You can redeem the rubber band back to the original wrist by doing 5 positive/kind things with the child. Playing, singing, coloring and reading a story to her are some examples of positive things you can do to gain the band back. This is because for every bad reaction, it takes five good/positive reactions to repair the relationship.

The goal is to have all five bands on the original wrist at the end of the day.

The results


Harvey says that the method has completely changed how she relates with her son. She is now able to deal with his difficult moments calmly and he responds better to her low voice. The rubber bands act as physical reminders that stop us from blowing up, giving us time to calm down and find a way to react better.

If you take that extra minute, you will realize that your kid is still a child and learning. S/he is not mature enough to control his/her emotions and the tantrums and bad behavior are not meant to taunt you, rather to demand your attention.

I’ll be trying this rubber band parenting method this week and I’ll share the results with you in a future post.

I love hearing from you. Have you been in a situation where you completely lost it with your kids? If you’re one of the lucky few that have figured out how to control themselves, what techniques are you using? Would you give the rubber band method a try? Let’s discuss in the comments section below.


Until we see each other again, 


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