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The Inside is What Really Counts, Right?

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We grew up hearing “Don’t judge a book by its cover” and “What’s on the inside is what really counts,” but do we actually live by these sayings, or even believe them? Sometimes it’s hard to make our health a top priority when the world we live in is so materialistic and superficial. You get sucked into the fashion, beauty and physical aspect of things and don’t leave time to take care of what really matters. I’m not saying there is anything wrong with dressing nicely or wanting to look a certain way, but this should come second, AFTER we have taken care of our health and wellness. And when I say health I don’t just mean eating fruits and vegetables and getting some exercise, I mean maintaining a healthy body as well as mind and soul.

Before I continue let me tell you that I struggle with this personally, and I understand how difficult it can be, but just because something is hard to accomplish that doesn’t mean you should just neglect it. We need to push ourselves more, make ourselves believe how important we are and stop throwing it aside to do something more fun or easier. You see, we act like we should accept people for the way they look and love them despite their faults, yet we turn around and criticize ourselves. Or maybe it’s not mental abuse, but we eat food that poisons us or hang out with people who negatively influence us. If we truly believe that the inside counts more than the outside than maybe we should prove it by the way we live. Stop worrying about your crooked nose and start changing your poor eating habits. Stop spending time with those who bring out the worst in you and associate with people who lift you higher.

Yes, change sucks, it requires effort and it means you have to do things that aren’t always fun. But suffering for a short time to reap a long term benefit is worth it. We are only hurting ourselves when we continue to ignore our negative qualities instead of working towards improving them. So, why not approach today with a little different mindset than you usually do. Pick something in your life you would like to be different and do something about it. If you need help then ask someone for help, if you need to write it down then write it down, but just decide to do something. Make the effort for positive change in your life, you won’t regret it.

Have any tips or stories to share about change in your life? Let me know in the comment section below.

*picture above taken by me

Hookahs: Are They Bad For You?

I have heard people say before that smoke from a hookah is harmless and is nothing like smoke from a cigarette because it is “filtered by water.”  When I first heard this information, I was not only skeptical, but I was not about to take anyone’s word for it without doing research first. Of course I had no intention on smoking from a hookah regardless, but I’m just the type of person that wants to understand these things (especially if my friends are taking part in something without understanding the dangers of it). I found out pretty much what I had suspected initially. Hookahs are not any better than smoking a cigarette, in fact they can be worse. This water filtration system that some people think takes out all the toxins in the tobacco, only filters out less than 5% of nicotine. But it still leaves tar and other cancer-causing chemicals intact. So if you have ever used a hookah or have thought about doing so, just know this first.

  1. A one hour hookah session produces 200 times more smoke than one cigarette and is said to be equivalent to smoking one pack of cigarettes.
  2. There is less nicotine in the smoke from a hookah compared to a cigarette, but since a typical hookah session lasts around 45 minutes, you end up taking in more nicotine (compared to 5 minutes smoking a cigarette).
  3. A hookah session emits 8x the amount of carbon monoxide and 36x the amount of tar than one cigarette.
  4. Since it contains nicotine, it has the potential to become addictive. (physically and mentally)
  5. Since it has all the bad toxins that cigarettes have, you can develop similar conditions that smokers can get including lung, oral and bladder cancer, clogged arteries, and heart disease.
  6. Even if you spend time in a hookah bar and DON’T smoke, you can still breathe in the harmful chemicals from the second hand smoke in the air.

I am in no way an expert and cannot prove that these statements are in fact accurate; I have just read different articles about the issue. But it should be common knowledge that smoking anything isn’t very healthy for you. I share this information so that anyone who believes hookahs are harmless will think twice. If you want to damage your lungs and smoke chemicals you have the right to do so, but don’t encourage others by giving them false information.

And if you take nothing else from this article, at least learn this: Don’t ever make decisions based on someone’s word (especially important decisions like your health) you should always take the time to research things before believing it and then spreading it around.

road quotepicture above: taken and edited by me

information sources: nytimes.com, cnn.com, thehookahlounge.org, mayoclinic.com
photo source: flikr.com

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