A Lesson From ABC's Robin Roberts’ Breast Cancer Report

So many times we had to learn from the tragedy that befalls others and make some checks on ourselves. That’s is the case with ABC "Good Morning America" anchor Robin Roberts who has been diagnosed with breast cancer and will be undergoing surgery Friday.
Report on her illness reveals: “I never thought I'd be writing this ... I have breast cancer. It all started a few weeks ago. We had gotten the news that our dear colleague and friend, Joel Siegel, had passed away and we began preparing for our special tribute show for him. I did a piece about Joel's courageous battle with cancer reporting on the way my friend had lived his life and been such a successful advocate for the importance of early cancer screenings. That very night when I went to bed, I did a self breast exam and found something that women everywhere fear: I found a lump.”

This is a lesson for all especially when its possible to find out these things ourselves. So in situation like this it necessary to go over issues like the symptoms of breast cancer and personally check ourselves – it can happen to any of us.

A lump or a thickening in the breast or in the armpit:
Some lumps or swelling in the breast tissue may be due to hormonal changes. But if a lump or thickening persists, whether it is in the breast or in the armpit area, it may be a cause for concern. Swelling in the armpit, where the lymph nodes are located, may indicate that the body is fighting an invasion. A lump in the breast tissue may indicate a cyst, or it may indicate a problem in the duct or the lobes. See your doctor or nurse practitioner for a screening. Here is an overview of lumps.

A change in size or shape of the mature breast: If a mature breast changes size or shape, and especially if only one breast is changing, it may signal that milk ducts or the lobes deeper within the breast are swelling. This could be due to fibrocystic or regular monthly hormonal cycles. If the changes are not in step with regular periodical changes, consult a health professional and get an exam. Having a baseline mammogram can help you and your doctor keep track of changes with accuracy.

Fluid (not milk) leaking from the nipple: Between ages 41 - 58, there may be a small bit of non-bloody leakage from the nipples of both breasts. This leakage is usually due to hormonal changes and is not worrisome. However, if the fluid is leaking from only one nipple, is a new discharge, or is bloody, there are several tests that can be done to discover what is causing it. Ask your doctor for a professional opinion on your next steps.

Change in size or shape of the nipple: Changes in body weight or natural changes that come with age may affect the size or shape of the nipples. However, if a nipple retracts (pulls in) and does not easily return to its normal shape, see your doctor or a nurse practitioner for a manual exam. If there is a problem with the milk ducts which are just below the surface of the nipple and areola, then having a diagnostic mammogram or ultrasound can help diagnose the trouble.

Changes of color, shape or texture of the nipple or the areola: If you observe dimples, puckers, or a rash on the skin of the nipple or the areola, (darker skin that surrounds the nipple) and these symptoms persist, or do not respond well to treatment creams, check with your doctor to determine what action to take. One unusual type of breast cancer is called Paget's disease, and starts out in the form of a rash. When caught and dealt with at an early stage, this is a very curable condition.

Unusual pain in the breast or in the armpit: Know your cyclical pains, and note if breast pain occurs in tune with the monthly period, and in both breasts. While uncomfortable, if it is normal to you, it may not be worrisome. But if you have pain which occurs off-cycle or in only one breast or armpit, get it checked out. Keeping a good record of your cycles will help you understand hormonal changes in your breasts, and also helps your doctor and nurse determine what may be happening in your body.

Everything is Connected: Our bodies go through cycles and changes, some of which are due to age, weight gain or loss, hormones, medications, pregnancy, stress, or changes in diet. Some of us are very aware of living in our bodies, while others of us live more in our minds or in our emotions. In order to have and keep our health, it's good to be aware of our body and its rhythms. Just as getting a toothache can seem to make your entire head hurt, or pulling a muscle in your leg causes you to limp and throws you off balance, finding a change in your breast affects your overall health and may signal a need to get a checkup or a diagnostic screening. Knowing your body's normal changes helps you deal wisely with your health. Regular communication with your health care team can allay fears and help you raise your defenses against disease.

Diabetes Drug Avandia should be pulled from the Market

The widely used diabetes drug Avandia should be pulled from the market because of heart risks, a federal scientist said Monday.

Those risks, combined with no unique short-term benefits in helping diabetics control blood-sugar levels, fail to justify keeping Avandia on the market, according to a copy of a slide presentation by Food and Drug Administration scientist Dr. David Graham.

The document was distributed at the onset of a daylong meeting of a joint panel of outside experts convened to consider whether the drug should be restricted to use in select patients and branded with prominent warnings or removed altogether from sale. Previously, the FDA said information from dozens of studies of the GlaxoSmithKline PLC drug points to an increased risk of heart attack.

Glaxo officials, meanwhile, disputed that claim, citing their own analyses of studies of Avandia, also called rosiglitazone.

"The number of myocardial infarctions is small, the data are inconsistent and there is no overall evidence rosiglitazone is different from any other oral antidiabetes agents," said Dr. Ronald Krall, the company's senior vice president and chief medical officer.

The FDA isn't required to follow the advice of its advisory committees but usually does.

The FDA moved up the date of Monday's meeting following the May publication of a study by The New England Journal of Medicine that generated new concerns about Avandia's safety. The pooled analysis of 42 studies revealed a 43 percent higher risk of heart attack for those taking Avandia compared with people taking other diabetes drugs or no diabetes medication.

Glaxo, meanwhile, says its own data show no increase in heart risks with Avandia compared with other diabetes drugs, including Actos. The FDA's Graham, in his presentation, said Avandia does increase heart risks — something Actos, from Takeda Pharmaceuticals, does not do.

About 1 million Americans with Type 2 diabetes use Avandia to control blood sugar by increasing the body's sensitivity to insulin. That sort of treatment has long been presumed to lessen the heart risks already associated with the disease, which is linked to obesity. News that Avandia might actually increase those risks would represent a "serious limitation" of the drug's benefit, according to the FDA.

Dont Let That Man Slip By - Ask Him Out

Some time after a failed marriage, you are just now re-entering the dating scene, but you are not sure how the rules have changed. These days, is it OK for a woman to ask a man out? And what's the best way to do it?

Should a woman ask a man for a date? Conventional wisdom says, "No, it's the man's job to do the pursuing." Reality says, "Sure, why not?" And why not indeed? Because it works. I have met dozens and dozens of couples where the woman did the asking and the result is a happy, balanced, long-term life together.

What's the best way to do it? Ask without asking. Use an indirect or soft question. Did you ever notice that if you say to someone, "I wonder what time it is," they'll tell you the time, even though you didn't directly come right out and ask for the time. Or if you say, "I don't know what kind of movies you enjoy," they spill the beans and tell you. When you use a statement like this, especially with questioning body language -- raised eyebrows or raised hands -- and a questioning voice inflection, the person will willingly answer a question that was never even asked in the first place. This is a time-tested way for a woman to ask a man out on a date. It even works on paper.

300 Creative Dating Ideas
12 Simple Rules To Get Him/Her

Trina is a columnist with a large city newspaper. "I met James when we went for a business lunch -- it was a Thursday," she told me one Sunday afternoon at a house party. "For two hours we talked about everything. I couldn't stop thinking about what a good time I had. I wanted to do something about it. On Friday I wrote a short thank-you note that said, 'Thanks for a great lunch. I really enjoyed myself, and the conversation. I am not sure of your personal circumstances but, if you are able and would like to, I'd like to take you for dinner sometime.'

"Right after I sent the note, I wanted to get it back, but it was too late -- it was gone. I went away for the weekend with some girlfriends, but I couldn't stop thinking about it. I was nervous, but didn't see that much downside, other than not hearing from him at all -- which would have been equivalent to a 'no' and a little hurt to the ego.

"When Monday came, the phone rang and it was him. I felt relieved. We went for dinner on Tuesday night, and hey -- now it's 15 years later, and James still has the note."

300 Creative Dating Ideas
12 Simple Rules To Get Him/Her

The business of a woman asking a guy out is to some degree a generational thing: The younger you are, the more acceptable it is; the older you are, the more it might make either or both of you uncomfortable. But, gals, whatever your age, I think you'll be amazed how many guys will be flattered, relieved and impressed that you made the effort. And honestly, what have you got to lose? If you're really nervous, turn it around and be playful: "I had a great time talking with you," you can say, "and I think it'd be great if you asked me out." If your rapport has been really good and he looks to be getting the hint, you could even reinforce it with some fun body language, like smiling, widening your eyes expectantly and nodding your head "yes."

Dont Let Your Hopelessness Lead To Mood Disorder

Theres depression, and then theres double depression.

Sound bad" It is, as per Thomas Joiner, Florida State University Distinguished Research Professor and the Bright-Burton Professor of Psychology, who has identified hopelessness as a distinguishing feature of double depression in a new paper reported in the Journal of Affective Disorders. The finding could help therapists diagnose and treat the mood disorder.

Double depression occurs when an individual who suffers from dysthymia, a persistent case of mild depression marked by low energy, falls into a major depressive state. It is not a new concept, but psychology experts know little about the characteristics that distinguish double depression from dysthymia or major depression alone, as per Joiner.

Its clinically important because it is under-recognized and harder to treat than either dysthymia or major depression by themselves, Joiner said. The hopelessness result is significant, and it suggests that therapists should particularly focus on this feature early and often in the therapy of double-depressed patients.

Joiner, along with FSU doctoral student Kathryn Gordon, Joan Cook from the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Philadelphia and Michel Herson from Pacific University in Oregon, studied the psychological assessments of 54 adults who entered a community-based psychiatric outpatient facility for non-psychotic adults ages 55 and older. Questionnaires were given to patients before starting therapy to measure depression, hopelessness, anxiety and their sense of control over their own lives.

They observed that double-depressed patients had high levels of hopelessness, whereas patients with either major depression or dysthymia alone showed more moderate levels of hopelessness.

A patient who is hopeless has really just given up, Joiner said. They feel that the world is against them, the future is bleak and they are incapable of fighting back.

This entrenched sense of hopelessness is one likely reason why double depression is so hard to treat, as per Joiner. The chronic nature of the underlying dysthymia is another.

Any chronic condition is harder to treat than a less chronic one, and that is true for medical and psychiatric conditions alike, he said. Second, people with dysthymia come to view depression as just part of who they are, and so they dont come in to therapy as often, even when they dip down into a major depression. When they do come in, issues of motivation to do the therapy are common.

In addition to differences in the level of hopelessness, the scientists observed that people with dysthymia alone and those with double depression felt little control over their own lives. People with these conditions felt that external forces -- other people or fate -- determined their future. Those suffering from major depression alone did not have this characteristic.

Joiner cautioned that the studys findings must be interpreted in light of the studys limitations, namely its small sample size. Still, the results could have important implications for therapy of double depression. Cognitive treatment, which focuses on changing negative thinking patterns, and antidepressant drugs are especially helpful in treating symptoms of hopelessness and perceptions of a lack of control over ones own life, he said.

Dont Let Your Love Life Cool Off - Spice It Up

Your wife, girlfriend or mistress said that you are boring in bed. She says that it's the same thing every time you two are together and that nothing ever changes. What do you do to spice things up for her and you too?

Being boring or great in bed is in the loin of the beholder. And married sex can, in fact, become same time, same place, same everything. It often does. The problem with sex in a long-term relationship is that, quite often, couples keep on going with what worked before. We have compared this in the past to a dance routine executed in the same way over and over again. Once it was exhilarating, now it's just old and, yes, boring.

You ask us what you can do to "spice things up." A good question. You've probably already heard all the aphorisms, like do it in any room in the house except the bedroom. Great, except if you live in a studio apartment in Manhattan. Or take a bubble bath together. Fine, but that idea gets old, too, and then a steamy bath stops leading to steamy sex.

The point is that for every lingerie-wearing, sex toy-using, fantasy-acting idea one could come up with, eventually you run out of variations on the theme. Not that there is anything wrong with any of them. By all means, give them a try ... doing anything differently often works as a short-term solution in alleviating boredom. That's why couples usually have sex as soon as they check into a hotel. It's not necessarily the time away from the office -- or even the new lingerie -- that excites them. It's the change of scene.

The reason all of the "tricks" to keep romance alive ultimately fail is that lovemaking has to be more than just a bag of tricks in order to continue to grow and thrive. It should be about emotionally connecting and really being present for each other. At its best, it's a true expression of feelings and allows for vulnerability. It's about caressing, touching, kissing and holding each other -- and really wanting to give each other pleasure. We suspect that when your wife says she wants more than the same exact thing you did the last 50 times you made love; her real complaint is that she wants more intimacy.

This however is what we think. No one in the world is a better expert on what she wants in bed than your wife, or a better person to ask about how you could spice things up. Now, what about you? Surely, there are things you would like her to do differently as well. It is extremely likely that she's trapped in the same sex-by-numbers approach to lovemaking you are. If things are going to improve, you will both have to make some changes. You may find that just talking about what you want jump-starts passion.

We believe that sex is more about attitude than technique. The feeling of being wanted, cherished and loved trumps new positions every time. But new positions can be fun, too. To get some ideas, you may consider reading the Kama Sutra together. There are numerous versions of this 4th century Indian guide to sexual and spiritual happiness; some beautifully illustrated. It's as good a book on the topic as you can get, and a constant reminder that sex should be a natural and seamless part of your life together. If you want something more modern, try "The Joy of Sex."

There are few places in our lives where we feel more insecure than when it comes to making love. Therefore, when you and your wife discuss how to do away with sexual ennui, be extremely careful to speak with tact and understanding. (A lot of compliments won't hurt, either.) You should begin by saying how much importance you place on the intimate part of your lives, and how much you want to please her. Tell her that this is something you can only solve together, and how much fun you think it will be to do so. Provide a lot of positive re-enforcement, ask her what she likes and dislikes, and tell her what your needs are too. And, above all, once you know what she wants, don't have that become your new, never-to-be-modified routine, or it too will soon become boring. Allow this part of your life together to keep evolving and changing.

By the way, we applaud you for wanting to discover new ways to keep this part of your marriage fresh, and for being secure enough to ask the question.

Now, we need your help. If you are, or have ever been, in a sexless marriage or in a committed relationship where the man ended sex, we would love to hear from you. Please click this link, which will take you to our survey. We need the help of both men and women. A few minutes of your time can provide invaluable insight into a problem affecting so many marriages. It will only take you about 10 minutes. Thank you!

10 Errors That Can Ruin Your Marriage

In life and love, you may think you're supposed to always focus on the positive instead of the negative. However, unless you become aware of your own hurtful attitudes or actions -- so that you can correct them -- your chances of staying in love 'til death do you part are close to zero. To have your marriage last a lifetime, avoid these 10 common mistakes:

1. Talking "at" instead of "with" your mate. Let his or her body language be your guide. When you're talking "at" your partner, he or she will tense up. When you're talking "with" your spouse, he or she will relax.

2. Tuning out -- instead of tuning in -- to what your mate is saying. When you mind begins to wander, stop and remember that what your partner is saying is important to him or her.

3. Forgetting to thank your mate. Not thanking your spouse for being considerate, thoughtful or kind makes him or her feel unappreciated and foolish for caring about you.

4. Getting defensive instead of saying, "I'm sorry." When you mess up, the sooner you sincerely say, "I'm sorry," the sooner your mate can stop resenting you.

5. Always saying, "I'm sorry," yet never changing. An apology buys you another chance. However, if you keep making the same mistake, apologies not only seem empty, but annoying as well.

6. Being repeatedly late. Frequently keeping your partner waiting is not only inconsiderate, it's arrogant.

7. Playing the victim. This behavior not only accuses your spouse of hurting you, but adds insult to injury by implying that he or she is doing it intentionally, when that may not be the case.

8. Jumping to conclusions. Presuming that you know what your partner feels -- and why -- without first getting all the facts is only going to push him or her away.

9. Badmouthing your spouse behind his or her back. This not only adds to the list of secrets you keep from your mate, but also tells others how little you respect your partner.

10. Thinking that doing something once is enough. If you only temporarily stop making the above mistakes -- and don't continue to monitor yourself to keep from slipping back into bad habits -- you're teasing your partner with changing. You're also kidding yourself that you're committed to improving your marriage, when really you're not.

The Do's and Dont's of Office Romance

More than 60 percent of relationships now blossom in the workplace, according to a new survey.

Long hours and an increased number of female workers have led to flirting, flings and fledgling romances between colleagues, New Woman magazine claims.

As well as clocking into work, employees are putting in the hours practicing their romancing skills, with 94 percent of women admitting to flirting in the office and more than half confessing they had ended up in bed with a colleague.

Lisa Helmanis, author of "Master Dating," explains why work often works out in the romance stakes: "The way that we live now, we are meant to discern everything about a possible partner in less than five minutes in a crowded bar and decide if they are a love match.

"Work takes you back to a place where not every exchange is loaded with pressure and an attraction can slowly build.

"There's nothing more exciting than when you finally confirm the fact that both of you seem to be making 15 coffees a day at exactly the same time, for exactly the same reason."

So relations have been heating up at the water cooler and flirtation is common at the photocopier.

If you don't want to risk becoming the butt of jokes among the post-work pub posse, it's important to ensure both parties are definitely involved, and unattached.

Kate Taylor, relationship expert for Match.com and author of "Not Tonight, Mr Right," identifies the key signs that a colleague is keen on you.

"They will always try to move things out of the office into another location," she says. "The office is designated a 'work' environment, so things will not progress there. Your keen colleague will try to move things to a 'neutral' location like a coffee shop, or a more romantic location like a restaurant.

"If they are always saying stuff like, 'Let's discuss this over lunch' or 'It's so late, shall we stop working now and grab some dinner?' they are keen on you."

But think long and hard about any decision to pounce, or your potential love promotion could turn into a down-in-the-dumps demotion.

"Love in the office is such a distraction, you have to be incredibly sure before you begin flirting that this is going to go somewhere," Taylor warns.

Romance Checklist

Still not sure whether to start sending sickly sweet emails to a colleague or dare to enter the office dating game? Taylor lists the potential pitfalls to consider.

"You can both see each other all day every day," Taylor explains. "At first this sounds like heaven but soon it becomes a drag if he/she is constantly asking, 'Why did you leave work all spruced up last night?' or, 'Where are you going?'

"Even if you are not distracted, your boss will assume you are distracted and will watch you more closely for errors in your work and/or day-dreaminess," Taylor warns.

"We are all programmed to take an interest in interpersonal relationships, especially at work, so your budding romance will soon become the work soap opera," Taylor says.

"You will be gossiped about. Your romance may well blow your image of a hard-headed business type. In meetings, everyone will be staring at you wondering, 'Did Tony in accounts give you that lovebite?'"

Your Reputation

"You can't date more than two colleagues from work without being labeled as a bit on the easy side, so be very sure that you really like someone you're going to snog," Taylor advises. "You are allowed one 'fling', like an office Christmas party [one night stand], and one long-term relationship, but that's your lot. Otherwise you risk being branded the office leech (male) or ballbreaker (female)."

If you've decided that one of your colleagues is worth some serious overtime on the romance front, conduct yourself accordingly.

"It is worth finding out if your employer has a policy on workplace dalliances," Helmanis says.

"Some places do, so bear that in mind. Misbehave and you could find yourself hauled up in front of human resources and hot under the collar for all the wrong reasons."

Try following Helmanis' tips to make your office romance work for you:

Do's and Dont's

  • Don't cover the object of your affection's computer screen in love notes, or even think about e-mailing pictures of yourself naked.
  • Don't use group discussions to bring up personal issues.
  • Don't tell his or her assistant how they failed to call when they said they would or go Nancy Drew and try to sneak a look in their desk calendar.
  • Do keep your professionalism in tact. Most of us need time out from our most intense personal relationships, so try to be even more professional around them at work than normal.
  • Don't flaunt your relationship. Office romances can push a lot of other people's buttons. Ride it out and keep a low profile as a couple until the gossips have tired of it.
  • Don't let romance get in the way of work. And if your office romance hits the skids, reverting from lovers to colleagues can be a full-time job in itself. Throw yourself into your job and remember the real reason why you go to work.
"The best way to think about an office romance is in business terms," Helmanis recommends.

"As well as being a fertile breeding ground for crushes, this is also the place where you make the magic beans that pay the bills. Make sure that if you lose one, you don't lose the other."

STDs On The Increase Among Japanese Older Generation

Summer's here and that means an increase in sexually transmitted diseases, with older Japanese women particularly susceptible, according to women's weekly Shukan Josei.

"There's a tendency in Japan to regard STDs as young people's diseases, or ailments that hit people who play around a lot. STD stands for sexually transmitted disease. That means anybody who has sex can contract them. It's those sexually active people who think they have no chance of getting an STD or believe they're immune to them who are in the most dangerous situation," gynecologist and clinical psychologist Kazue Yoshino tells Shukan Josei.

Japan is the only industrialized nation where HIV contraction is increasing, but other STDs like chlamydia, gonorrhea, herpes, genital warts and crabs are almost "national diseases," the women's weekly says, adding that each of the above ailments, bar the clap and chlamydia, is spreading to chronic proportions.

"In a worst-case scenario, STDs can lead to death and also cause cancer or sterilization. It's a sad fact that people simply don't know enough about STDs at this stage," Yoshino says. "STDs aren't diseases that strike only those doing something special, they are a real threat to ordinary people leading ordinary lives."

While most of the more common STDs are spreading in Japan, physicians say the known figures could be as little as one-tenth of the actual contraction rates. They say the rapid recent increase in venereal disease can be blamed on such factors as the growing numbers of men and women who have multiple sex partners, as well as oral sex becoming generally practiced, but mostly because people who haven't realized they've picked up something going around bonking others and passing on their disease without realizing it.

Gynecologist Yoshino points out that STDs are spreading particularly nastily among women in their 30s or older.

"Many of these women are having sex less often than they used to, have finished having children and don't see a gynecologist as frequently as they once did," Yoshino says. "They don't consider themselves a chance of having contracted an STD and because they're not having check-ups, it means it takes longer to find and treat them if they are infected."

Late ZARD vocalist Izumi Sakai was being treated at the time of her death for cancer of the cervix, a disease often caused by an STD called the human papillomavirus.

"STDs can cause serious damage to the body in the form of cancer or sterilization," gynecologist Yoshino warns Shukan Josei. "That's why everybody who thinks they have nothing to do with STDs really should check to make sure."

10 Little Things Women Do That Drives Men Crazy

Most men really, really like women. That may seem a bit like telling you that water is wet, but it's true. If there is a God, men should bow down and thank him for blessing us with such beautiful creatures in the opposite sex. Of course, we usually aren't shy about showing our gratitude: We tend to turn into slobbering piles of putty when a woman does just about anything. It's not always the scandalously mini miniskirt or the cleavage-baring V-neck that does it (and this is by no means a call to outlaw these wonderful things). Instead, it's often the little, innocuous actions and displays that have the biggest effect on men. Read on for the top 10 little things a woman does that drives us crazy.

Number 10

She goes for the heart through the stomach

All that fluffy talk about the sensuality of food contains morsels of truth, especially when the sweaty, apron-clad woman making it is doing so purely for your benefit. And it won't just be the kitchen that'll heat up if you start feeding each other with your hands. So eat up and enjoy. If you thank her the right way, you might even get out of doing the dishes.

Number 9

Her nipples stand up, and she lets them show

Jennifer Aniston's permanently erect nipples were one of the only things that made watching Friends tolerable for dutiful boyfriends across North America. Breasts are like ice cream sundaes to men, and the mind-blowing hint of hard nipples isn't just the cherry: It's more like the whip cream, the chocolate sauce, the chopped nuts, the caramel sprinkles, and the cherry on top. They're a sneak preview of what lies beneath, and they fill our heads with delicious imagery. So take off the damn sweater, please.

Number 8

She gives us the look

Most guys give just about every girl they come across the cursory once-over, but when that gaze is returned with a sultry, suggestive look, let's just say it immediately causes a tingling sensation "down there." With one such subtle glance, all the built-up stress and tension of the hunt is released. It confirms everything that was hoped for and gives the green light to swoop in for the kill. And nothing is hotter than that.

Number 7

She puts on lip gloss

Women think men love the soft, shiny lips that result from wearing lip gloss. In reality, we just love watching them put it on. In fact, why hasn't someone made a three-hour DVD devoted to girls applying lip balm, lipstick or anything else of that ilk? The head slyly tilted back, the mouth just slightly agape, the eyes closed -- what isn't sexy about that image?

Number 6

She dresses down

Give any girl a platinum card and six hours in front of a mirror, and she'll end up looking fantastic. But the real test (along with the real turn-on) is how a woman looks without designer jeans or makeup. If a girl can look downright hot in her laidback duds, it speaks to her natural beauty and shows that she has the capacity to be low maintenance. You can keep your Calvin Klein- and M.A.C-aided diva; I'll take the casual cutie with her hair tucked into a bun, bralessly wearing a worn-out shirt.

Number 5

She talks blue out of the blue

No one likes a potty mouth. In fact, it's kind of a turnoff when a girl drops nonstop F-bombs. But when a normally prim and proper young lass loses herself in the moment and let's something downright nasty slip from her mouth, it can crank the heat up to dizzying levels.

Number 4

She hits the gym

Maybe it's the skimpy shorts and sports bras. Or it could be the grunts and labored, sweaty breathing. It may even be the litany of compromising exercises that get women bent into a breathtaking array of flexibility-testing positions. Whatever the reason, women somehow manage to turn a trip to the gym into a hot and heavy foreplay session. At least they did until some prude came up with "women only" gyms, and robbed men of the only reason they had to go in the first place.

Number 3

She gets close to a friend on the dance floor
Two girls grinding on the dance floor is a lot like wrestling: Even though you know it's all fake, you still can't help but like it. It doesn't take a study by Kinsey to figure out why men are blown away by this sight. Sweaty, drunk girls groping each other, the air charged with sexual energy ‑- and it's not even happening on DVD! Inevitably, some doughhead will ruin it for everyone by trying to sneak into the middle, but can you really blame him?

Number 2

She gives a sneak peek at the goods

Men are very easily visually aroused -- that's why porn is a multi-billion-dollar industry. So catching an unintended glimpse of a girl's "unmentionables" immediately gets the hormones flowing. Catching a peek at a lacy thong or watching the seductive trip of a dress strap as it fortuitously slips off a shoulder can do more for the libido than the raunchiest full frontal ever could.

Number 1

She suggests watching something dirty

Most men aren't particularly proud of their porn obsession (pornographers are just so good at marketing it to us!). So it goes without saying that having a girl suggest a "blue movie" is as big a relief as it is a turn-on. Who doesn't get charged up watching beautiful professionals pleasuring each other while doing some pleasuring of their own? Dirty flicks also provide lots of great ideas and suggestions (along with a bit of penis envy) and can keep things super-steamy for hours. Bonus: You can watch her searching for the right movie at the store for a glimpse into those closet ideas she isn't quite ready to reveal yet.
What men secretly enjoy

When a hot chick in a tight shirt or jeans walks down the street, it's no surprise to see the head of every man she passes swivel with varying degrees of subtleness. But what most women don't realize is that far less than curve-hugging clothes is required to light our fires. There are a myriad of seemingly innocuous things females do that are infinitely more arousing than a blatant flaunting of the goods.

Top 10 Types Of Women, Most Men Crave For

There are a lot of good women out there, even though it's not always easy to find them. Here's a list of women with traits you should actively look for — and that would make any guy happy:

Miss Sweet

Miss Sweet is a woman who's positive, content with her life, always upbeat — and just a blast to be around. She's a genuine person without a bitch bone in her body. She's always truly happy to see you and you find yourself looking forward to spending time with her. Miss Sweets are usually snapped up out of the dating market right away, so they're pretty rare. But if you can find one, you've got a real treasure on your hands.

Miss Equality

This type of woman is a true feminist — not one of the radical man-haters, or the hypocritical pseudo-feminists who think that equality means "I demand equal rights and an equal salary, but a man still has to pay for me." The Miss Equalitys of the world genuinely like men, and understand that equality means equality across the board, from holding the door open to fighting on the front lines. They believe that a relationship should be a 50/50 partnership, and are more than willing to shoulder their half of the responsibilities and dating expenses — just because it's the right thing to do.

Miss Sexual

You should be so lucky to encounter one of these! Miss Sexual loves men and loves sex — and makes no bones about it. She's not selling it, she's not using it as a tool to manipulate men — she just naturally craves it. Miss Sexual is not to be confused with a nymphomaniac, who suffers from psychological problems — rather, she has somehow bypassed the female societal training of auctioning off the use of her vagina to the highest bidder. For this reason, most other women hate her, because she's giving it away free of charge. But men love her because she's a free spirit who's actually honest about her sex drive. Very rare, but worth searching the ends of the earth for.

Miss Best Friend

Closely aligned with Miss Sweet, Miss Best Friend is another joy to be around. She's the kind of woman you're totally in sync with — you like the same things, watch the same TV Shows, enjoy going to the same places. You can spend five minutes with her and think you've known her for years. She's always on your side, laughs at all your jokes and calls you just to say "hi" because she genuinely misses you. She's great just to hang with. A word of warning, though — with Miss Best Friend, you have to make your sexual interest known from day one because if she gets it into her head that you are going to be "just friends," it's almost impossible to change her mind.

Miss Straightforward

This is the type of woman who knows how to communicate. With Miss Straightforward, there are no games, no expecting men to be mind readers, no behavior based on ridiculous, female-biased advice from articles in Cosmo or The Rules. Miss Straightforward will pick up the phone and ask you out. She will do what she says she will do — not say one thing and do just the opposite. Although she may be blunt at times, at least you'll know where you stand and you'll never have to spend hours trying to decode contradictory or emotion-based female behavior.

Miss Independent

This is a good woman to find if you don't have a lot of time to invest in a relationship or you're the type of guy who needs a lot of space. Miss Independent has a real life of her own and is happily going in her own positive direction. She's the type who wants a man in her life, but doesn't need a man in her life. And she certainly isn't looking for men to solve all her problems or blame when things don't go her way.

Miss No Pressure

While many women are chomping at the bit to get married, Miss No Pressure hasn't fallen prey to any such agenda. She's happy just to be with you. So you don't get any "Where is our relationship going?" or hint-dropping about the future or window-shopping at the jewelry store. She may want to get married at some point, but she's in no hurry — she thinks that if it happens, it will just happen naturally.

Miss Secure

Miss Secure accepts herself as she is and is comfortable with her good points, as well as her bad. And she feels the same about you. Miss Secure doesn't need constant attention to shore up a sagging ego, has tons of self-esteem and is always going in her own positive direction.

Miss Personality

Miss Personality is a great find. She might not be up for first prize in a beauty contest (although she could be), but her intelligence, wit and sparkling presence just light up the room, and she draws people like a magnet. Her personality is so charming that it easily overcomes any deficiencies she might have in the looks department, just because she's so great to be with.

Miss Low-Maintenance

The rarest of the rare, Miss Low-Maintenance is the most atypical of modern women. She really doesn't care about how much money you have — she just likes you for yourself and not for what she can take from you. She's likely to be a true feminist, and will gladly pay her share of the dating expenses. If you can find a Miss Low-Maintenance, hang on to her for dear life!

Miss Right for You

A lot of guys choose women who are "arm candy" — good-looking trophy girlfriends who bolster their status among other men or counteract their own insecurities. That's all well and good, but if you find a woman who makes you happy, regardless of looks, age or social status — or what any other guy thinks — then you have definitely won at the mating game.

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Top 10 Qualities Of A Good Girlfriend

Francesca Di Meglio

To find out exactly what men are looking for in a good girlfriend. Impossible? Not exactly. We simply turned to Lisa Daily, syndicated relationship columnist and author of Stop Getting Dumped, who promises to help readers find and marry "the one" in three years or less. Daily followed her own advice and married her dream man, who proposed at the top of the Eiffel Tower after a six-month courtship. Now, she is determined to help other single gals do the same. A dating guru, Daily interviewed — and continues to do so — hundreds of bachelors to find out what makes a woman marriage material in this day and age. Here, Daily dishes about the 10 traits every man is looking for in a serious girlfriend:

1. She has a life of her own — and it's pretty good to boot. Ladies, this means that you take care of yourself, pay attention to your personal style and find time to hang with your fabulous friends and family. You seek adventure by traveling. And you take in life's pleasures — from indulging in dessert to walking through the park on a sunny day. "You don't expect your boyfriend to be your entire existence," says Daily. In other words, you're not waiting for some man to show up, so you can get your "real life" started.

2. She never makes the first move. This issue has been debated to death, and there is no true consensus. But Daily says that she strongly believes women should never, ever pursue a man. Instead, she suggests waiting for the man to initiate and plan dates. Her reasoning: If the woman is always the one calling, she will never know if he is really interested in her or if it's just convenient for him. She may find herself questioning the relationship every step of the way. Men simply aren't programmed to think like that and therefore are better suited to the chase, Daily says.

3. She is sexy without being trampy. This means something different at the beginning of the relationship than it does down the road, Daily says. In the beginning of courtship, a woman should refrain from making any comments that are overtly sexual. She also flirts by using nonsexual touch like placing her hand on his forearm or even the knee but only briefly. When the relationship gets more serious, and presumably more intimate, sexual touch and public displays of affection are more appropriate. At this point, it's okay to play footsie under the table.

4. She waits to have sex. Yes, the sexual revolution arrived long ago and few people expect a "pure white bride" nowadays. But sex is still a pretty big step for couples. Daily says that many women don't even realize just how much sex changes the dynamics of a relationship. When women have sex, they release a hormone called oxytocin (also referred to as "the cuddle hormone"), which some scientific researchers believe makes women feel extra warm and fuzzy for their sex partners. Daily warns that if women do the deed too soon, they might make too much of a relationship that barely ever existed outside of the bedroom. When you inflate the significance of a relationship, the man often bolts. Daily's advice is to wait at least one month into the relationship before having sex with your new man.

5. She does little things to show she cares. Daily has one friend who noticed that her traveling salesman boyfriend never had time to get his shirts washed, so he would just go out and buy new ones. Her friend started to drop off his laundry at the dry cleaners once a week. Daily herself cooks for her husband. "It's as if he doesn't even know where the kitchen is," she says. "But that's not to say that he starves when I'm out of town." No, you do not have to turn into June Cleaver. The bottom line is that you should want to do the little things that let him know you care and you are paying attention to his individual needs. And he should do the same for you. Daily boasts that her man scrapes the ice off her windshield on cold winter mornings!

6. She should be her boyfriend's best wingman — err, wing woman. Help him to look good in front of the boss, advises Daily. Laugh at his jokes and help him shine when it is important. Of course, again, he should do the same for you.

7. She never turns on the pressure. This one is important. Men have a distinct aversion to any sort of pressure, says Daily. Therefore, women should avoid calling and/or emailing him many times during the day or dropping hints about the future. In fact, keep the dreaded M-word (marriage) out of your vocabulary all together. "Men don't want to constantly take the pulse of a relationship," says Daily. "They would rather just enjoy it."

8. She does not take any crap — from anyone. A good woman never accepts bad behavior. Guys respect women with whom they can't get away with anything. If he knows there's a penalty — like getting thrown to the curb — for a serious violation like cheating, he'll respect you more, and he will be far less likely to do it. You should also never even bother to date married men, those who already have girlfriends or anyone who verbally or physically threatens or abuses you. Period.

9. A good woman always chooses a good man. That means that you should look for someone who is honest and dependable. He has to treat you right. If he says he is going to be somewhere, he is there. Chivalry is not dead, by the way. "Good manners are a deeper window into what kind of man he truly is," Daily says. You should also have compatible views on money (which is the number one thing couples fight about). Even though they say opposites attract, savers should think twice before shacking up with wild spenders.

10. She knows that love is the biggest part of the mating equation. Just how does a good woman know that she has found that crazy-for-you, toe-curling relationship? Daily says that some women have an "a-ha" moment, while love simply sneaks up on the rest. "I believe the feeling includes a unique sense of comfort and acceptance and the feeling that someone else's happiness is as important to you as your own," Daily says. "A certain amount of toe curling is key as well."

Lindsay Lohan's Lesbian Lifestyle Hacked

Lindsay Lohan used her myspace account to send 'lesbian' messages to a close female friend whilst inside rehab, it was reported.

Hackers claim they broke into the Mean Girls actress's private emails and found the messages to her best friend Samantha Ronson.

Star magazine reports the 21-year-old wrote to Ronson: 'Babe, if I don't have you in my life then I should just go die… I want to marry you and have children with you.'

She then reportedly signed off the message: 'I love you – Lindsay Ronson.'

The wild child endured an extended spell in rehab after crashing her car in May on Sunset Boulevard, reportedly driving under the influence.

Ronson, 30, was with her at the time, when police allegedly found cocaine in the Mercedes.

Lohan's myspace page can only be accessed by 75 friends including Samantha, Nicole Richie and Lindsay's younger sister Ali.

The actress was recently seen looking healthy and refreshed, partying on the beach with friends at America's 4 July celebrations.

She will be playing a pole dancing stripper in her new film, 'I Know Who Killed Me.'

The Good Side Of Medifast Diet

Ken Black

If you are one of those people who have tried every method of losing weight under the sun, consider the benefits of the MediFast diet, a healthy new diet product on the market that is designed to help you quickly shed pounds the safe and wholesome way. If you are looking at it right now, or have ever considered it, or even if you are looking at some other type of diet to help you with your weight loss needs, consider the three benefits this regimen has when you’re trying to lose weight. The 3 Benefits of the MediFast Diet 1. The MediFast Diet is Convenient This weight loss program is convenient. You never have to worry about counting up points or checking the labels of your food for their carbohydrate content. And, you don’t have to count points, pop pills, or drink tea either. This diet helps you lose weight by doing what you know how to do best - eat! The MediFast diet isn’t the type of diet that requires one to sit down to a meal every night. If you are on the go, it is okay for you to be on the go because MediFast has a variety of things that the diet allows you to choose from, from snack bars, to puddings, and soups. There is no need to have to kill yourself with the temptation that grocery shopping can bring, as the MediFast diet doesn’t require you to ever have to set foot in the grocery store. 2. You’ll Never Be Hungry Again MediFast is not one of those programs that cause you to be constantly starving. These diets don’t work for people simply because they cause them to work against what feels natural for them. Their body is telling them that it is hungry and needs food to fuel itself, and certain diets have you ignoring this impulse. You will be happy to know that you can eat not twice, not three times, but five times a day. The diet helps to constantly fuel your body so that it can effectively and efficiently burn calories and fat, helping you to lose weight faster and easier. 3. The MediFast Diet is Healthy There are a lot of diet options out there for a person to choose from when they are looking at their weight loss options, and the MediFast diet is just one of them. The thing that sets this diet apart from the rest is the fact that it makes you eat and put nutrients into your body rather than depriving your body of the all-important nutrients that are required to help the body operate efficiently and burn fat efficiently. There are no foreign chemicals that you are ingesting into your body to help the body to burn off fat that you have to worry about being recalled later. The MediFast diet is all about You. It is about real food, safe food that is good for your body and helps to keep you nourished and healthy. This weight loss program is a great diet option for people who need something different to spur their weight loss. If you are having a hard time losing weight or you have reached a weight loss plateau, consider the benefits of the MediFast Diet for yourself today. Ken Black is the owner of Weight Loss Discovery, a website all about Healthy Weight Loss Programs, diet supplements, weight loss tips and much more.

4 Tops To Keep Your Heart Healthy And keep You Alive.

If you ate your way through your twenties, and worked your way through your thirties, you’re probably showing a bit of wear. But, don’t despair. You have a long-lost friend in South Carolina who’s going to help you regain the vigor of your teenage years - or, at least help you bring the downward spiral to a screeching halt.

Dr. Dana King, of the University of South Carolina, reports rather stunning results concerning the impact of midlife lifestyle changes. It takes a mere four years - think about that - to effectively reverse the damage done in those years of work and wantons. But…

There’s a plan you must follow to achieve these results. It’s not a complicated plan, and it requires no special tools. It requires only the full participation of one critical component for success: your horribly neglected body.

So, take these simple steps to reduce your risk of heart disease by 35%, and your risk of death by 40%:

-Eat five or more fruits and vegetables each day

-Exercise a minimum of 2.5 hours each week

-Maintain a healthy weight

-Stop smoking

That’s it. Do these four simple things and, at the end of four years, you’ll be on a
par with the folks who have been doing them all along. Wow - it’s a bargain!

But - you have to do all four. Completing only 3 of the 4 showed little, whether any, reward.

So, come on - toss that butt, grab an apple, take a walk, and shed a pound or two. That’s it - Welcome to the first day of the rest of your healthy life!

Treating Cancer Using Breast Milk

In a search of good health there is a controversial alternative cancer treatment using something that usually goes to babies.

Breast milk is filled with all sorts of unique nutrients to help babies grow. For mothers who can't breast feed, there are breast milk banks where donated milk is stored and sold.

But now, breast milk is not just for babies as cancer patients have started to drink it.

Pauline Sakamoto of Mothers’ Milk Bank said they have sold breast milk to 60 cancer patients.

“It may not mean that the cancer is cured, but we're seeing a dramatic change in the quality of life for some of them,” she said.

Howard Cohen says it worked for him after being diagnosed with prostate cancer. Instead of traditional treatments, he turned to purchased breast milk that he mixes with fruit and yogurt.

“If you drink it straight, it has a bit of a yucky, oily under taste,” he said.

Some Swedish research says a protein in mother's milk can kill cancer cells in Petri dishes.

“That doesn't translate to being effective in humans,” Dr. Michelle Qaqundah said.

Dr. Qaqundah is the Director of Naturopathic Medicine at the Cancer Treatment Centers of America in Philadelphia. While there are some natural alternative cancer treatments, she said breast milk has a long way to go.

“There's a potential for that, but there’s really no way of knowing until we study it in humans,” she said.

Dr. Pamela Berens, with the Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine, said she is concerned that adult use of donor milk could drain an already limited supply.

“Right now we don't have enough breast milk for our donor milk banks for the premature infants who we have such wonderful data about the benefits,” she said.

Proven benefits or not, Cohen said he is cancer free and plans to keep drinking his special milk.

“Initially I was drinking it every day. I cut back to two bottles a week,” he said.

A doctor's prescription is required for donor breast milk. It can cost as much as $3 an ounce and is not covered by insurance for adult use.

Talcum Powder From Talc Can Cause Cancer

Brands of talcum powder available in the country have been found to contain harmful elements, according to an initial study conducted by the Pakistan Medical Research Council (PMRC) in Islamabad. The researchers hastened to add, however, that the study was too small to draw a definite conclusion and further extensive studies would be undertaken.

“More extensive investigations would have to be undertaken by consumer protection bodies such as the Pakistan Council for Scientific and Industrial Research,” said PMRC Director Dr Huma Qureshi while talking to Daily Times Friday.

Talcum powder is produced from talc, a magnesium trisilicate mineral, which in its natural form may contain asbestos, a known human carcinogen (any substance that causes cancer or helps cancer grow). Asbestos can cause lung cancer and mesotheliomas (cancers affecting the lining surfaces of the chest and abdominal cavities). Because of this association with asbestos, all home-use talcum products marketed in the USA after about 1973 – baby powders, body powders, facial powders – have been required by law to be asbestos-free.

The objective of the PMRC study was to evaluate the presence of asbestos fiber in commonly used talcum powders marketed in Pakistan, APP reported Friday. The study was carried out in collaboration with Centre of Excellence in Geology & Department of Environmental Sciences, University of Peshawar. Thirty-one locally and imported brands of talcum powder were analyzed for the presence of asbestos along with the classification of various types of asbestos mineral present.

Results showed that all samples of talcum powder including local and imported brands contained a mixture of different types of asbestos fibers and other hazardous minerals and thus, can not be recommended as being of cosmetic grade.

While no increased risk of human lung cancer has been reported in association with the use of cosmetic talcum powder, it has been suggested that talcum powder may be carcinogenic to the covering layer of the ovaries through the migration of talcum powder particles (applied to the genital area, sanitary napkins, diaphragms, or condoms) through the vagina, uterus, and fallopian tubes to the ovary.

A case-control study published in American Journal of Epidemiology in 1997 of 313 women with ovarian cancer and 422 without this disease found that the women with cancer were more likely to have applied talcum powder to their external genital area or to have used genital deodorant sprays. Women using these products had a 50 percent to 90 percent higher risk of developing ovarian cancer. Storing diaphragms with powder did not significantly increase cancer risk. Since many of these women might have used products with more asbestos contamination than that in current products, the ovarian cancer risk for current users is difficult to evaluate.

The most recent study of this subject found an overall 37 percent increased risk among talc users. It was interesting that the risk from talc use increased by 54 percent among women who had not had a tubal ligation (had their tubes “tied”) to prevent pregnancy, whereas talc had no impact on women whose tubes had been tied. Because tubal ligation is expected to block external carcinogens from reaching the ovaries via the vagina, uterus, and fallopian tubes, this finding provides some support for the idea that talc is a carcinogen.

10 Things To Consider Before A Cosmetic Surgery

It’s not always easy to determine – out of a seemingly endless and overwhelming array of choices – the right cosmetic enhancement choice for you, who should perform it, where it should be performed, or what specifically to look out for. As you explore the idea of a cosmetic procedure, here are some important issues to consider.

1. PLASTIC SURGEON: If you’re thinking about surgery, you need to consider a licensed, board certified plastic surgeon above all other practitioners. Most urban areas today have hundreds of plastic surgeons from which to choose, and you can be assured that these physicians have had years (not days or months) of rigorous surgical training specific to each procedure.

2. BOARD CERTIFICATION: You want to be sure that your surgeon is board certified. Plastic Surgery is one of the 24 medical specialties recognized by the American Board of Specialties (ABMS), and certification in the specialty requires extensive additional testing and review of surgical results.. If a doctor is a
member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) or the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS) you are assured that they are a board certified plastic surgeon.

3. EXPERIENCE: When you meet with surgeons you need to ask how many years they’ve been in practice and how many times they have performed the procedure that you’re considering and with what kinds of results. You should also ask to see a wide array of “before and after” pictures, and to speak with others who have had surgery about their cosmetic surgery experience.

4. TRAINING & TECHNIQUES: Depending upon your cosmetic surgery goals, there may be a variety of surgical options. For example there are different types of tummy tucks, facelifts and breast lifts. When you meet with a surgeon, talk openly and realistically about your specific goals and concerns so that he or she can recommend the procedure and technique best suited to you.

5. A CARING DOCTOR AND STAFF: You want to have good rapport with the surgeon you select and it’s important to feel comfortable and at ease with his or her clinical staff, as well. The staff, the facility, their reputation and their longevity in the community and commitment to patient care and safety are all things that will affect your peace of mind, your comfort and the ultimate success of your procedure. Signs indicating a team of dedicated professionals may be hard to define in concrete terms, but they are easy to “feel” – you’ll know whether you’re just a number and dollar signs to them, or whether they truly care about each patient individually. Trust your gut.

6. BEFORE AND AFTER SURGERY CARE: Be sure that you understand how the practice will care for and communicate with you before and after surgery. Will there be a Registered Nurse as well as the doctor involved in your care? Are “pre-op” visits scheduled to education you about the procedure and address your
questions and concerns? What arrangements are there concerning post-surgery follow-up and care?

7. HOSPITAL PRIVILEGES: Surgeons and doctors typically have a hospital affiliation – meaning that they have privileges to perform surgery at that facility. Make sure any doctor you are considering for a surgical procedure has “hospital privileges” in that particular procedure at an accredited hospital.

8. OPERATING & RECOVERY ROOM TEAM: The team accompanying you during surgery and immediately after is very
important consideration. The following people should be in the operating room with you: your plastic surgeon, a physician anesthesiologist, a Registered Nurse (RN) and a “scrub tech” that assists the surgeon.

In the recovery room, another RN certified in Advanced Cardiac Life Support should be available to care for you while you are recovering. This level of care is the “gold standard” and what you should seek.

9. ANESTHESIA: Anesthesia should be administered by a board certified anesthesiologist qualified in that ABMS-recognized specialty. Most cosmetic procedures are done under general sedation and you need to insist that your procedure be done under general, MAC or IV sedation by an experienced, board certified

10. FACILITY SAFETY: Your surgery should be performed in a hospital-based operating facility or in an office-based surgery center that has one of the three following accreditations: AAAASF, JACHO, or AAAHC.

This assures you that a high standard of care has been set and is scrutinized by at least one of these professional agencies.

Get familiar with what's going to happen with your body pre and post cosmetic surgery. Gather all the details you can to understand your cosmetic treatment. La Jolla Cosmetic Surgery Centre at http://www.ljcsc.com will answer all your questions related to breast implant San Diego California options.

Actress Zhang Yu, Implicates 13 Directors In China's Sex-For-Work System

Actress Zhang Yu, who became widely known for revealing the "sex-for-work" scandal in the showbiz industry, has made another attempt to fight against the system on Wednesday, by trying to report 13 more directors for such abuses of power.

Upon her invitation, a reporter from the Beijing Morning Post accompanied Zhang Yu to a nearby office of the Discipline Inspection Commission of the Communist Party of China in Dongcheng district, Beijing, on Wednesday afternoon.

"As I have already lost lawsuits against those directors, I think it will be hard to prevail through more appeals to the court. Thus I have decided to report them," Zhang Yu told the reporter.

At the commission office, Zhang Yu submitted a letter listing sex deals involving 13 directors.

However, after looking through the letter, a commission officer said such cases were not included in their scope of administration, as the commission was only responsible for supervising party members and officials.

Undaunted, Zhang Yu said she would not give up trying, "The commission officer told me some other possible avenues. I will try all the suggestions." She said she may even report the directors to police for abuses against women.

Zhang Yu declares that she is endeavoring to help purifying the showbiz industry, and to aid other actresses who have suffered from the ugly sex-for-work system.

In 2003, the then unknown actress stirred up the whole country by accusing numerous famous TV and film directors of frequently requesting sex from actresses in return for casting opportunities. Zhang released audio and video tapes of herself and other actress friends having sex with certain big name directors as evidence. But disapproving voices claimed she only did so to gain herself public notoriety.

Chinese Good Will Ambassador Jiang Wenli, Combats HIV/AIDS

On the screen, she is a brave policewoman or a miserable widow, while in reality, she has other identities: Good Will Ambassador of the Ministry of Health on HIV/AIDS and member of the Leadership Council of the Global Coalition on Women and AIDS (GCWA).

Jiang Wenli, famous Chinese actress who has starred many prime-time TV series, will attend the meeting of the GCWA and the International Women's Summit slated for early July in Nairobi, Kenya and have site visits there.

Jiang previously attended similar meetings in Thailand and Britain. "From the exchanges, we can learn each other's experience in the fight against AIDS," she said.

Jiang started her job as a Good Will Ambassador in 2003 together with several other singers and actors.

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"I knew little about AIDS at that time when officials with the Ministry of Health approached me," the actress was frank. Theme of the World AIDS Day that year was "women and HIV/AIDS". She was told later that the Ministry also asked some other actresses but were turned down because of apprehension of prevalent bias.

Thus Jiang learnt her first lesson on the importance of promoting AIDS-related knowledge among the public. "A college graduate, I live in the metropolis of Beijing and travel all over the world, yet I still have little knowledge about AIDS, let alone others."

The first HIV infected she met were a family, with whom she was arranged to take photos. The mother was infected during a blood transfusion. She later passed the virus to the father and the baby she delivered later was also tested as HIV positive.

"The mother would shed tears at the mentioning of her disease and the then 7-year-old kid, with herpes already appearing on his neck, was crying all the time," recalled Jiang bitterly.

Sitting in a car back home, Jiang was silent. "I was so sad," she frowned, "AIDS is spreading quickly and more people could be infected. It is urgent to tell them how to protect themselves from this deadly disease."

As a Good Will Ambassador, her major task is to participate in activities on each World AIDS Day and visit the infected and their families whenever she has time.

She still remembered that in 2003, when she just began the job, she flushed with embarrassment when distributing condoms in a shopping center in downtown Beijing.

Two years later, however, she finished her book Wenli on AIDS to share with readers her understanding of the disease, which used to be labeled as stigma.

And she wants to do more.

She wants to adopt an orphan left by AIDS victims, but she hasn't found a suitable one. "Many orphans are too old to adapt to a new environment," she said.

She has been planning to make a TV serial for three years to show the audience the plight of HIV infected, their families and children. She said that she will start on it after her Africa trip.

She has also an idea to set up a "celebrities' cabin", where they can donate their belongings for sale to help AIDS/HIV-affected people.

"Someday the little cabin may be developed into a charity foundation where all people can contribute to the combat against AIDS," she said.

Jamaican Authorities Clamp Down On Companies Engaging In Human Trafficking

Companies involved in trafficking persons and tricking victims through false advertisements in the print media, will not be allowed to thrive, as the Government institutes measures to prevent and suppress the crime.

"The police are on a very intensive drive, going into [these] places," said Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Justice and Chairman of the National Task Force Against Trafficking in Persons (NATFATIP), Carol Palmer, at a recent public forum on human trafficking, held at the Kingston and St. Andrew Parish Library.

"Reports now reflect that people have closed down their operations because of police going up on their businesses," Mrs. Palmer pointed out, assuring that the police were being "trained to understand the crime and how to use the investigative methods to get at these persons."

Speaking at the same forum, which targeted some 300 students from schools in the Corporate Area, Youth Empowerment Officer, National Centre for Youth Development (NCYD), Keitho Nembhard described the profile of the perpetrators and cautioned participants not to be too easily enticed by advertisements.

"Have you ever seen in any of our print media advertisements asking for helpers, specifically helpers from the rural communities? Have you ever seen, where it says 'help wanted; massage parlour needs [specific] type of girls or ads asking for young ladies to be waitresses in hotels and various organisations?"

Mr. Nembhard asked, while alerting students to strategies used in the crime.

He also advised students to be on the lookout for people coming into their communities talking about job placement or overseas work/study programmes, and explained that these were the disguises that perpetrators use to trick young people into thinking that the offer is wholesome and lucrative.

While acknowledging that not all of these agencies were using the guise to exploit persons, he said that most of them took this approach.

Mr. Nembhard further urged participants to support the fight against this major human rights violation by reporting known or suspected cases of trafficking to the authorities. "Don't be afraid of any outside influence telling you to shut up," he implored.

Recognizing that human trafficking was also facilitated in the domestic setting in some instances, Mr. Nembhard also told students not to be afraid to report "when your parents coerce you into granting sexual favours to other people outside the parish, inside the parish or even to your own family members."

Since April 2006, nine victims of human trafficking have been rescued in Jamaica, six of whom were over 18 years old and three between the ages 13 and 17. Five persons were charged with trafficking a child, under the Child Care and Protection Act, 2004.

A significant measure in the national attack on human trafficking is the establishment of the Trafficking in Persons Unit in the Jamaica Constabulary Force to handle cases of human trafficking.

A drive to educate the public about the issue is considered as seminal to the success of the effort. Consequently NATFATIP is collaborating with the Jamaica Library Service to host a series of public education forums in libraries across the island. The mass media is also being used as a platform to transmit messages against human trafficking.

Prostitution Ring Busted, Victims Getting Aid And Counseling

A number of Latin American women who were victimized in what federal officials say was a major prostitution ring are living in safe housing, getting psychological counseling and other assistance, and may qualify for special US visas for sex trafficking victims who cooperate with law enforcement.

The steps are just the beginning of a recovery process that could take a lifetime, said Linda Miller, executive director of the Civil Society in St. Paul, Minnesota, one of several Twin Cities organizations that works with victims of sexual violence.

"It's not possible to change people back to what they were before the crime," said Miller, "but it is possible to stabilize them and get them into a situation where they can deal with the present and the future. They will probably carry the scars their whole lives."

The women were rescued during a law enforcement sweep last month that uncovered eight brothels in otherwise ordinary-looking houses and apartments in Minneapolis, Richfield, West St. Paul and Austin, according to a federal indictment.

The indictment describes women being flown to Minnesota and delivered from one brothel to another, one woman given short heels so she wouldn't appear too tall to the johns, and two women forced to have sex with 80 men in one night.

The women's identification papers were reportedly seized by the ring leaders to prevent them from fleeing.

Twenty five men and women -- most illegal immigrants from Latin America -- were charged in federal court in connection with the bust.

Authorities would not reveal the exact numbers or the precise whereabouts of the women who were rescued. But Twin Cities agencies that work with formerly prostituted women say the first steps for such victims is finding a safe place to begin to heal. The women often are taken first to a domestic violence shelter, they said, and then moved into a "supportive housing" program that can coordinate their therapy and services.

In cases such as this one, where foreign-born women were stripped of their identity papers, getting proper identification for the women is a step toward giving them a sense of control over their lives, agency leaders said.

"Women being trafficked are severely controlled by their traffickers," said Jose Trejo, program director for Breaking Free, a St. Paul-based nonprofit that provides a variety of services to prostituted women. "When they come to an organization for assistance, they've been utterly traumatized. The biggest issues they face are shame, guilt and low self-esteem -- given all the things they've had to do."

Because so many women are given drugs as a way to control them, women may need help breaking chemical addictions when they're finally rescued, said Trejo. Likewise caring for their medical and mental health is needed.

"For women who are trafficked, you don't have just one person to be afraid of, you have a network of people to be afraid of wherever you go," said Miller.

Authorities aren't revealing how the women involved in the Minnesota ring were first drawn into prostitution. But agencies that work with prostituted women say that women who are "trafficked" -- bought and sold from other countries -- are duped with a variety of scams.

Often the women are recruited in their home countries, under pretenses of landing a restaurant job or other legitimate work in the United States, said Amy Sanchez, a director at Casa de Esperanza, a St. Paul-based agency assisting victims of domestic violence.

Many are women who have married or entered into romantic relationships with men who bring them to the United States and then sell them for sex, they said.

"We've worked with women who were told they had a student visa, but when they got here they were told, 'You don't have one. So you have to do as I say,' " said Sanchez.

Their situation is complicated by the fact that many women don't speak English, giving traffickers another means of control, said Miller. So rescued women are quickly assigned to English-language classes.

"We start the ESL, (English as a Second Language), right away because it gets their minds off of things," said Miller. "It's good therapy."

The women rescued in last month's raid are expected to be asked to cooperate with federal prosecutors. They are eligible to continue receiving services, housing and eventually vocational training as long as it's needed, said Miller.

Preventing Tumours - 10 Things To Note.

Fermín Apezteguia

The health of women reaching menopause is principally threatened by three illnesses: cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis and breast cancer. The document presented by the Spanish specialists in Amsterdam contains an innovative proposal to help reduce the number of women who develop breast cancer following the menopause. It is called chemoprevention, and forms part of a series of initiatives aimed at containing the advance of this disease.

The idea is to treat post-menopausal women who have a high risk of breast cancer with drugs. So who are the women in this risk group? Not, as one might expect, women whose families have a history of the disease, but those with other risk factors such as having had their first period at an early age, late menopause, a first pregnancy at an advanced age or a history of tumours. In Spain, the number of such women could be two million. At the moment, this post-menopausal treatment is still only an idea, although international studies are being carried out on its possible development. Advice

1. An adequate diet is very important. Avoid excess weight gain at this time. Experts advise the Mediterranean diet and the intake of 1,000 milligrams of calcium each day.

2. Physical activity. Walk every day, if possible.

3. Take vitamin D. Lie in the sun for 15 minutes each day. Consult your doctor about taking supplementary pills.

4. Don’t smoke. Smoking increases the risk of cardiovascular disease and osteoporosis.

5. Cardiovascular illness is the principal cause of death after the menopause.

6. Check for breast tumours. Consult with your doctor.

7. Check for osteoporosis. Check for bone disorder.

8. Be positive. One should feel positive about the menopause.

9. Have an active sex life. A good relationship and the support of a partner helps enormously

10. Maintain one’s quality of life. This is the number one objective, and a key factor in getting through the menopause .

Using Algorithm In MenopauseTreatment

If you’re confused about the treatment options for your particular menopause symptoms, now there’s an authoritative guideline, an algorithm, for your doctor or health professional to use.

As estrogen declines in our middle years, the symptoms of discomfort vary greatly from woman to woman and often evolve slowly through a complex range, which if left unchecked, could lead to osteoporosis, bone fractures, and heart disease. It’s this complexity per woman that makes it such a challenge for health professionals to advise and prescribe just the right treatment.

The algorithm available now was developed by eight, internationally renowned scientists and women’s health experts, led by Dr. Lila Nachtigall, professor of obstetrics and gynecology, New York University’s School of Medicine and Dr. Nancy Durand at the University of Toronto. It prescribes a hierarchy of treatment options, based on whether you are mildly, moderately, or severely symptomatic. Treatments include:

• Changes in lifestyle, including exercise, avoiding caffeine, giving up cigarette smoking, and more.

• Complementary alternative therapy using dietary supplements, like patented red clover.

• Regimens, in which several therapies are used in conjunction with one another.

With so much to consider now regarding hormone replacement therapy, some research indicates that North American use of botanicals has increased by 380 percent in the last 10 years. Plant estrogens, called isoflavones, are particularly helpful. These isoflavones are able to mimic the effects of estrogen because their structures are remarkably close to those we produce naturally and the body accepts them as such. Researchers found that women from countries with diets rich in isoflavones, such as Asia, experience a significantly lower rate of hot flashes during menopause.

Isoflavones are found mainly in legumes, such as lentils, split peas, chickpeas, broad beans and soy. Not all legumes contain all four of the most important isoflavones however. Red clover does and as a result of several successful clinical trials, it is now standardized as a valuable treatment option. Red clover (sold as Promensil) contains all four of the necessary isoflavones and contains 10 to 20 times the quantity found in soy, making it an effective remedy for menopause symptoms. Sold in the form of Promensil After-Menopause, this botanical is particularly effective for post-menopausal women, or when estrogen reaches its lowest level.

When deciding about over-the-counter botanicals, be sure to check labels, or ask the pharmacist which ones are credible and substantiated by scientific research in terms of efficacy and safety and which ones aren’t. In Australia, for example, all black cohosh product labels are required by law to caution consumers about the potential for liver damage. If you want to know more about how to treat your particular menopause symptoms, including dietary supplements, be sure to speak to your doctor or pharmacist.

A Shot That Removes Body Fats

Wouldn't it be nice if you could take fat from one area of your body and move it somewhere else? Well if the results of a study performed on mice by Investigators at Georgetown University Medical Center have been able to use simple, non-toxic chemical injections to add and remove fat in targeted areas on the bodies of laboratory animals.

They say the discovery, published online in Nature Medicine on July 1, could revolutionize human cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgery and treatment of diseases associated with human obesity.

Investigators say these findings may also, over the long-term, lead to better control of metabolic syndrome, which is a collection of risk factors that increase a patient’s chances of developing heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. Sixty million Americans were estimated to be affected by metabolic syndrome in 2000, according to a study funded by the Centers for Disease Control in 2004.

In the paper, the Georgetown researchers describe a mechanism they found by which stress activates weight gain in mice, and they say this pathway − which they were able to manipulate − may explain why people who are chronically stressed gain more weight than they should based on the calories they consume.

This pathway involves two players − a neurotransmitter (neuropeptide Y, or NPY) and the receptor (neuropeptide Y2 receptor, or Y2R) it activates in two types of cells in the fat tissue: endothelial cells lining blood vessels and fat cells themselves.

In order to add fat selectively to the mice they tested, researchers injected NPY into a specific area. The researchers found that both NPY and Y2R are activated during stress, leading to apple-shape obesity and metabolic syndrome. Both the weight gain and metabolic syndrome, however, were prevented by administration of Y2R blocker into the abdominal fat.

“We couldn’t believe such fat remodeling was possible, but the numerous different experiments conducted over four years demonstrated that it is, at least in mice; recent pilot data also suggest that a similar mechanism exist in monkeys as well,” said the study’s senior author, Zofia Zukowska, M.D., Ph.D., professor and chair of the Department of Physiology & Biophysics at Georgetown University Medical Center.

“We are hopeful that these findings might eventually lead to control of metabolic syndrome, which is a huge health issue for many Americans,” she said. “Decreasing fat in the abdomen of the mice we studied reduced the fat in their liver and skeletal muscles, and also helped to control insulin resistance, glucose intolerance, blood pressure and inflammation. Blocking Y2R might work the same way in humans, but much study will be needed to prove that.”

More immediately, the findings could provide some comfort to stressed individuals who blame themselves for a weight gain that seems outsized given the food they eat, said Lydia Kuo, a medical student who earned her Ph.D. in physiology due to work on the study.

“This is the first study to show that stress has a direct effect on fat accumulation, body weight and metabolism,” she said. “In humans, this kind of stress-mediated fat gain may have nothing to do with the brain, and is actually just a physiological response of their fat tissue.”

And perhaps the most rapid clinical application of these results will be in both cosmetic and reconstructive plastic surgery, said co-author Stephen Baker, M.D., D.D.S, associate professor of plastic surgery at Georgetown University Hospital.

The ability to add fat as a graft would be useful for facial rejuvenation, breast surgery, buttock and lip enhancement, and facial reconstruction, he said, and using injections like those tested in this study could make fat grafts predictable, inexpensive, biocompatible and permanent.

Equally important, blocking Y2R resulted in local elimination of adipose, or fat, tissue, said Baker. “This is the first well-described mechanism found that can effectively eliminate fat without using surgery,” he said. “A safe, effective, non-surgical means to eliminate undesirable body fat would be of great benefit to our patients.”

Roxanne Guy, MD, president of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, of which Baker is a member, is also excited by the findings, although she agrees that more research is needed to find out how the animal findings translate in humans.

“Providing a long lasting, natural wrinkle filler and a scientifically studied, non-surgical method for melting fat could revolutionize ‘growing old gracefully,’” she said. “This discovery could also have positive implications for reconstructive plastic surgery procedures performed on the face and breasts.”

Stress + “comfort” foods = excess weight gain As part of the study, Zukowska and her team examined the effect of several forms of chronic stress that mice in the wilderness can encounter, such as exposure for an hour a day over a two-week period to standing in a puddle of cold water or to an aggressive alpha mouse, and they conducted the experiments in combination with a regular diet or with a high-fat, high-sugar diet.

Stressed animals fed a normal diet did not gain weight, but stressed mice given a high-fat diet did. In fact, the researchers found these mice put on more weight than expected given the calories they were consuming.

“They gained twice as much fat as would be expected, and it was all in their belly area,” Kuo said. Stressed versus non-stressed animals ate the same amount of food, but the stressed animals processed it differently, she said, explaining, “the novel finding here is that NPY works on fat tissue, not in the brain.”

This finding makes sense if evolutionary advantage is considered, Zukowska said. “If you can store fat for times of hardship, you have a fat reserve that can be turned into energy for the next fight.

“The same mechanism may be happening in humans,” she said. “An accumulation of chronic stressors, like disagreements with your boss, taking care of a chronically ill child, or repeated traffic road rages, could be acting as an amplifier to a hypercaloric diet when protracted over time. Depression may also be acting as a stressor.”

Not only were the stressed mice much fatter, they began to exhibit the metabolic and cardiovascular consequences of obesity, Kuo said. “They had the glucose intolerance seen in diabetes, elevated blood pressure, inflammation in the blood vessels, and fat in their livers and muscles.”

“Although we don’t expect that, in the future, a person will be able to eat everything he or she wants, chase it down with a Y2R blocking agent, and end up looking like a movie star,” said Zukowska, “we are encouraged that these findings could improve human health.”

“The concepts described in this study might give us the tools to design one method to remodel fat and another to tackle obesity and metabolic syndrome,” Baker said. “It is very exciting.”