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Body+Soul Challenge Update

The Martha Stewart Show, February 2008

Since our Body+Soul challenge was launched in January, many of you have made the commitment to get on the path toward optimal health. Our supervising producer, Christina Deyo, also joined the Body+Soul Challenge; to help keep up her motivation, we sent her to Eva Scrivo's Manhattan salon for a day of pampering -- and some valuable slimming beauty tips.

Christina was given a haircut, which can be used to enhance features that we like about ourselves and take attention away from the features we may not like. The architecture of haircutting can strengthen the planes on a woman's face by carefully placing layers at the cheekbone and jaw bone. A side-swept bang is also very flattering because of the asymmetry of the line -- the diagonal movement of the hair is slimming.

A great haircut can strengthen the planes of your face and make it look slimmer by creating height at the crown of the head and elongating the face. It can also make you appear a couple of inches taller. The trick is expertly cut layers that support height in your hair. This effect can also be achieved with a few velcro rollers set straight back along the mohawk section of the head. You can also "back-brush" your hair by slightly teasing a few sections at the top of the head, creating the illusion of height.

When it comes to color, darker pieces around the face create depth and a shadowing effect, resulting in the appearance of a slimmed face and strengthened bone structure. Highlights throughout the sides of the hair create dimension and movement; the contrast of light and dark creates a sense of depth in the hair and adds brightness to the face. Eva uses a balyage technique for highlights, a hand-painting process that originated in France. Balayge literally means "sweeping" in English -- the sweeping of perfectly placed color.

Christina also received acupuncture to help stimulate her metabolism through increasing circulation, and to help with hormonal balancing; acupuncture is particularly effective for weight loss and appetite suppression in women who have had children.

Ear acupuncture for weight loss is used to adjust metabolism, improve digestion, and decrease hunger. According to Eastern medicine, certain places on the surface of your ear correspond to parts of the body and when pressed create internal changes. Known as auricular therapy, small magnets or seeds from the Vaccaria plant are affixed to an adhesive tape and placed on specific ear acupressure points. Ear seeds and the effects of this treatment can last for days. (Written by Shellie Goldstein, M.S., L.Ac.)

Download and print the ear acupressure diagram. (Photo is by National Acupuncture Detoxification Association.) Note: The diagram is for illustrative, not instructional, purposes. This acupressure procedure should be performed only by a licensed acupuncturist.

After her acupuncture session, Christina received an oxygen facial, which helps rejuvenate and plump the skin.

Advice from the Experts
Our Body+Soul Challenge experts -- Dr. Brent Ridge, Body+Soul editor Alanna Fincke, and personal trainer Mary Tedesco -- have some advice to help all Challenge participants keep up the good work:

Dr. Brent Ridge was asked numerous times about the ins and outs of calorie consumption. With some help from Jim Glaser, R.D., of Canyon Ranch, Dr. Ridge has shared a wonderful chart to help guide proper calorie consumption. Download the calories used by the body instructions, the calories used by the body chart, and the weight-loss goal information.

Alanna was graded by our health editors on the quality of her lunch each day, and discovered that by making some simple switches in her meal, she could turn a not-so-great lunch into a better one. For example, replace iceberg lettuce with romaine in your salads, and swap creamy dressings with vinaigrettes and croutons with walnuts. Like croutons, walnuts add heft and crunch to salads. But thanks to their protein, fiber, and fat, they also add long-lasting energy. Unique among nuts for their high amount of alpha-linolenic acid, a type of omega-3 fat that protects against heart disease, walnuts also contain melatonin, which helps regulate sleep. They're also a good source of phytosterols, which help lower cholesterol levels. Iceberg lettuce is no nutritional star, but it's got that great crunch in salads, sandwiches, and tacos. Try romaine lettuce instead; it has the same crisp texture as iceberg, but with three times the folate and more than seven times the vitamin A, as well as more iron, calcium, potassium, and vitamin C.

Personal trainer Mary Tedesco was often asked about ways to maintain a healthy lifestyle while traveling, and the answer is simple: Try these simple exercises; all you need to do them is the wall in your hotel room.

Exercising While Traveling
1. Use the wall in your hotel room for wall squats or push-ups off the wall.
2. Use a telephone book for biceps curls or triceps press-backs.

Of course, you also need to move around and try to hit some hills. Walking is key to keeping yourself limber and relieving the aches and pains of traveling -- just be sure to pack comfortable shoes.

Special thanks to Eva Scrivo for giving Christina Deyo a makeover; to Jim Glaser, R.D., of Canyon Ranch for providing the calorie consumption charts; to Dansko for giving clogs to our studio audience; to Mary Tedesco for giving her Body Fit Travel Kit to our studio audience; and to Dr. Brent Ridge and Alanna Fincke for sharing this valuable health information. Mary was wearing the Dansko Susana clog. For more details on the Body+Soul Challenge, visit

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