Blog Posts by Oprah.com

  • Do You Have a Bowel Problem?

    Seven surprising reasons trouble is brewing in your gut.

    By Katherine Harmon Courage

    Photo: Thinkstock

    You Dumped Your Sugar Habit

    The problem: You replaced refined sugar with other sweeteners, and now you have to go. A lot.

    What it could be: Natural sugars (such as fructose), sugar alcohols (such as sorbitol, xylitol or erythritol) and artificial sweeteners (such as sucralose, i.e. Splenda) "can have almost a laxative effect" for some people, says Robin Rothstein, M.D., medical director of the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Program at Temple University. Those sweets are just one category of "fermentable carbohydrates," foods that can wreak havoc on some people's guts (another common irritating class is lactose), causing diarrhea, gas and/or bloating.

    What to do: "[If you're] munching on sugar-free gummy bears and then running off to the bathroom," Rothstein says, start keeping an eye on food labels. Avoid foods with ingredients ending in -ose (as in fructose) and -ol (such as xylitol).

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  • 5 Ways to Tell If Your Husband is Lying

    As told to Kate Rockwood

    Photo: Imagezoo/ Getty Images1. He Sounds a Little Funny

    Liars are sometimes called "fast talkers," but the speed of their speech varies as much as an honest person's within a conversation. Yet liars will alter their speech rates within a single sentence. Typically a liar might begin to speak slowly, because he's trying to figure out his lie-but once it comes into his head, he tries to spit it out as fast as possible.

    Pace isn't the only speech pattern that can trip up a deceiver. Research has shown that a person's vocal tone will waiver from baseline in up to 95 percent of all deceptive statements. If your partner's baritone is on the rise, you may be facing a fib.

    Related: Quotes to Help You Feel Less Alone

    2. He Slips a Verbal Clue

    Remembering the truth about what happened Saturday and the story he wants you to believe is a big mental burden. Many liars will buckle under the strain and make a verbal faux pas, like start-stop sentences ("There are many that I didn't-I

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  • The Breathing Trick that Can Help You Fall Asleep Faster

    It's long been considered one of the greatest tools for relaxation, but how you inhale and exhale matters even more than you might think. By Leslie Goldman
    Photo: Adam Voorhes

    The average person breathes in and out up to 23,040 times per day, but most of us do so inefficiently, taking short, shallow chest breaths while subconsciously contracting our abs, says Jane Pernotto Ehrman, a behavioral health specialist at the Cleveland Clinic Center for Lifestyle Medicine. Even though we're all born breathing from our bellies, by the time we hit adolescence, stress has crept in, and a natural response to stress-tightening up-restricts our breathing. But you can teach yourself how to breathe easier and reap serious physiological benefits in the process.

    Fall Asleep Faster: 4-7-8 Breathing

    To prepare for a restful night, Andrew Weil, MD, director of the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona, recommends this breathing technique, which acts like a natural tranquilizer. "Unlike sleep

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  • Secrets of People Who Love the Homes They Have

    You don't need a seven-figure income-or a fairy godmother with decorating skills to rival Nate Berkus-to turn the place where you live into your favorite place to be.

    By Candace Braun Davison

    Photo: Mel Yates

    They Don't Decorate Based on What Looks Good

    They Do: Map out how each room should function

    Before you decorate, ask yourself what you'll do in the room and where, exactly, you'll be doing these things, recommends Kelly Hoppen, designer and author of How to Achieve the Home of Your Dreams. This is critical for choosing which colors to use (Will you want to be energized or relaxed?), what furniture you'll want and how to arrange it, what storage space you'll need-even what kind of lights to choose. At-home yogis, for example, may want part of the living room clear so they can roll out their mats-and have soft, dimmable lighting overhead while they go into child's pose-while a cook may want bright task lighting and a table in the room so she can dice tomatoes while watching True

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  • 3 Affordable Dresses You'll Live in This Spring

    Designer Peter Som-known for his playful, colorful looks-has launched an affordable new line at Kohl's that you'll love.

    By Adam Glassman

    Photo: Richard Majchrzak/Studio D.

    Creative Office

    In a classic shirtdress silhouette, even mixed boho prints can go to work.

    Dress, Peter Som DesigNation, $74;

    Necklace, Chico's, $59.

    Bangles, R.J. Graziano, $20 to $30 each.

    Clutch, Hat Attack, $74.

    Sandals, Adam Tucker, $99.

    Related: How to Love The Skin You're In

    Photo: Richard Majchrzak/Studio D.

    Special Occasion

    Gold accents dress up preppy eyelet-perfect for a bridal or baby shower.

    Dress, Peter Som DesigNation, $74;

    Bangle set, Neda Brooklyn, $35.

    Belt, Stelios, $95.

    Clutch, SR Squared by Sondra Roberts, $99.

    Shoes, INC, $80.


    Photo: Richard Majchrzak/Studio D.Beach Weekend

    A new take on the maxidress: sheer panels and surprisingly flattering stripes.

    Dress, Peter Som DesigNation, $78.

    Scarf, Elizabeth Gillett, $88.

    Necklace, Lydell NYC, $45.

    Bag, Echo, $42.

    Towel, Natori, $35.

    Sunglasses, Ivory and Mason,

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  • Decorating Mistakes that Can Help You Find Your True Style

    The aha! moment that helps you create the home you love can often start with an "oops."

    By Candace Braun Davison

    Photo: Courtesy of Home Made SimpleYou're Decorating for April 2014

    The Mishap: Often, when people decorate, they decorate for how their life is right at that moment, says Kenneth Wingard, a designer and co-host of Home Made Simple (Saturdays at 9 a.m. ET, OWN). One divorced father turned his home into a man cave--perfect for his two boys--but when he started dating again, his decor sent a blaring message: There's no room for a girlfriend here.

    How It Can Help You: This kind of problem reveals a disconnect between who you are today and who you want to be, Wingard says, and it can get you to ask one whopper of a question: What do you want out of life? Once you know that, you can create a home that reflects who you are in the present and future tense.

    Related: 9 Ways to Liven Up Your Home with Yellow

    Photo: Courtesy of Home Made Simple

    You Brought Home the Kitchen Hutch…That Doesn't Go With Anything in Your Kitchen

    The

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  • Surprising Reasons You're Not Getting Pregnant Right Away

    For about 20 percent of couples, there's no obvious reason why it's taking so long to conceive. We've looked beyond the usual suspects: stress, coffee, cigarettes, bad timing, blockages...and birthdays.
    By Jena Pincott

    Photo: ThinkstockYou have the universal blood type.

    First off: There's no big red flag here. Forty-four percent of us have type O blood, and most have no trouble conceiving. But a study at Yale University School of Medicine got our attention when it found that, among female fertility patients in their 30s, those with type O were twice as likely as other blood types to have a hormone profile that made their ovaries seem older than their age. As a group, their FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone) levels more often passed a threshold (>10 mIU/ml) that suggests a lower egg reserve.

    The lesson: "Blood type serves only as an alert--it's not a risk factor," stresses Lubna Pal, MD, the study's senior author and a researcher in reproductive endocrinology, who doesn't want healthy

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  • 7 Ways to Have Your Most Productive Morning

    Falling behind no matter how early you wake up? Here's how to get focused faster.

    By Corrie Pikul
    Photo: Thinkstock

    As Soon as You Throw off the Covers

    What to do: Pull on extra layers.

    What it does: Turning up the heat makes it hard to stay sleepy. Body temperature naturally tends to drop when we're in the deepest part of our sleep cycle, which is two hours before we wake up, says Rafael Pelayo, MD, a sleep specialist at the Stanford University Sleep Medicine Center. That's why those hours of sleep right before the alarm goes off tend to be the most cozy.

    How it makes you more productive: Your body will feel literally warmed-up and ready to go, and your mind will follow.

    Read More: How to Make Hanging Flower Spheres


    Photo: Thinkstock

    If You Usually Stumble Around Like a Zombie (Even After a Full Night of Sleep)

    What to do: Shift your sleep schedule to match your circadian rhythms. It sounds like your alarm is currently jerking you out of low-wave sleep, putting you in a state of

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  • Scandal's Darby Stanchfield Shows Off Spring's Top Trends

    Ready to spring forward in this season's best trends? Darby Stanchfield, who plays Scandal's audacious investigator Abby Whelan, models the latest looks.

    By Adam Glassman

    Photo: Diego Uchitel

    Strokes of Genius

    Art-inspired pieces--like this brushstroke-patterned skirt and abstract print top--are the new florals. "I just want to swish around in this skirt," says Stanchfield, a native of Alaska. "Fashion to me is all about having fun, and I love the unexpectedness of this outfit."

    Adam's Tips

    • The same pattern-mixing rules apply to florals and abstract prints: The color intensity of both patterns should be equal-brights with brights, pastels with pastels.

    • Try printed pieces with a white or neutral background to ground the look and keep it from getting too busy.

    Shirt, $50; AYR.com. Skirt, $930, CH Carolina Herrera; 310-276-8900. Bracelet, $345; Shop.LizzieFortunato.com.

    Related: The Words Cindy Crawford Needed to Hear

    Photo: Diego Uchitel

    Fold Me Now

    "I love the color of this skirt. It's

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  • 6 Things that Bring Serenity to Any Room (Beyond Candles)

    Zen gardens, natural light and gauzy fabrics aren't the only ways to create a home where you can truly unwind.

    By Candace Braun Davison

    Photo: Courtesy of Ikea

    A Noise-Canceling…Rug

    You probably never even noticed a spa's greatest trick for creating a calming environment: "Soft fabrics, like mohair, help keep sounds from echoing," says Stacy Shoemaker, editor-in-chief of Hospitality Design, which recognizes the world's top hotels with its annual design awards. White sheepskin throws, rugs and covered pillows are especially popular right now: They've got all the plushness of a high-end fabric, but--starting at about $30 a piece--they won't kill your budget.

    Read More: Why Rob Lowe Sympathizes With Justin Bieber

    Photo: Myquillyn Smith

    An Odd Couple That Works Together

    In a room with a mishmash of furniture bought, given and handed down, one of the easiest ways to keep things from looking jumbled is to figure out which pieces of furniture could work together--like a mirror and a chest that form a makeshift

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