Sisters: If You’re Overweight & Not Trying To Change…Please STOP Complaining.

By Nomalanga Mhlauli-Moses

SISTERS: I anticipate some people will get mad at me for saying this but since I run a blog for women of color which focuses on living “healthy lives” and having “healthy relationships”,this needs to be said and I hope it is received in the spirit in which it is being shared.

If you are extremely overweight and are not making the effort to change that, please stop complaining that you can’t find a man or that you have several health issues.

First of all, a lot of our health issues stem from not eating healthier and exercising. Second of all, I know of no respectable man who wants to be with a woman who does not take care of herself.

Yes, some people have other complex issues; that’s not who I’m talking about.

Make small changes-take a 15 minute walk 3 times a week and build from there….or substitute your rice/potatoes/pastas for a salad. Drink more water etc but please don’t stop after a week or a month and then say “it’s not working”. You have to keep going and never stop until you have re-claimed your body and your health.

Take responsibility for your life and your health-that is what REAL empowerment is.

Nomalanga helps Black women thrive in their lives and careers. She is a Social Commentator, an Editor at Your Black World , a former College Professor and Mrs Botswana. Visit Nomalanga’s Facebook page or Follow her on Twitter

World’s Oldest Person Gives Tips For A Long Long Life!

Seeking advice on how to live a long time? You could do a lot worse than Misao Okawa. The Japanese woman will celebrate her 116th birthday on Wednesday.

Okawa (pictured above, celebrating her 115th birthday in 2013) spoke to the U.K. Telegraph about her secrets for longevity. Those hoping for an obscure secret trick (“Always jump on one foot at exactly 3:43 a.m. while playing the banjo”) are in for a disappointment. Okawa attributes her incredible life span to getting plenty of sleep, eating well, and taking a nap as needed.

She told the paper, “Eat and sleep and you will live a long time. You have to learn to relax.”

Easier said than done, of course, but when advice on living a long life comes from the world’s oldest person, it’s worth heeding. Okawa, born in 1898 and great-great-grandmother to six, eats sushi “at least once every month,” Tomohito Okada, head of the retirement home where Okawa has lived for the past 18 years, told the Telegraph.

When asked by the Telegraph about her happiest and saddest moments, she spoke about her 1919 marriage to her husband and the birth of her three children. Her husband passed away in 1931. Her surviving children are 94 and 92, according to the Telegraph.

Okawa became the world’s oldest living person last year when the previous title holder, Jiroemon Kimura, passed away at the age of 116.







Click here to read more on Yahoo.

Household Duties….Whose Job Is It?

By Lauri Przybysz

Most people have been raised to expect that certain jobs are done primarily by one sex or the other. Despite these stereotypes job assignments aren’t written in stone. Many couples shift their roles and responsibilities several times throughout the years of their marriage. Is it time for some job reclassification in your marriage?

The issue may be more serious than you think. One of the main causes of domestic problems is domestic – as in, housework. Who picks up the used newspapers? Who takes out the trash? Who will empty the dishwasher? Who walks the dog? Sound familiar? Neil Chethik polled 300 husbands across the age spectrum for his book, VoiceMale: What Husbands Really Think About Their Marriages, Their Wives, Sex, Housework and Commitment (Simon and Schuster, 2006). “Housework showed up right after money as the top issue of discord,” he said. “It was higher on the list than sex, higher than raising the children, ahead of every other issue you can name.” In other words, couples can build a happier marriage by finding better ways to share the mundane tasks of their life together.

Sometimes a wife clings to more than her share of the housework out of a need to meet the expectations – real or imagined – of her mother or friends. Even if her husband is willing, the quality of his help leaves something to be desired, in her mind. Or if a man prides himself in a spotless car, the way his dad always did, he may be against  letting his wife take on that task.

Blending our two worlds and creating a partnership of life and love sometimes comes down to changing how we wash the dishes, make the bed, or store the groceries. We can let go of our idea of perfection in order to accept the help of our spouse. Sharing tasks means more time at the end of the day for us to appreciate each other. It is about making our relationship a priority.

What You Need To Know This World AIDS Day

By Jenn M. Jackson

Sunday is World AIDS Day. And, my earliest memory of HIV/AIDS awareness and outreach was when I was eight years old. There was this random poster on the back wall of my hair stylist’s shop that had a huge picture of a gallon-sized milk carton. It read, “You would have to drink a gallon of HIV infected saliva to contract HIV.” I remember thinking that was the silliest advertisement I had ever seen. Who would want to drink a gallon of someone else’s spit?


It was my first lesson in the realities and risks associated with HIV/AIDS. And, seeing it every few weeks back in the back of the room, where almost no one could see it, reminded me that many people in my community didn’t see HIV/AIDS education as a real priority.


Even I sometimes show my lack of knowledge when it comes to this taboo subject. I interchange words and letters. I frequently misspeak when describing my understanding of the infection and disease. I have a lot to learn. Many of us do. So, this World AIDS Day, I reached out to Mathew Rodriguez, Editorial Project Manager at The Body, the complete HIV/AIDS resource to help shed some light on an unspoken epidemic in the black community and communities of color abroad.


To begin, Rodriguez helped me clarify the differences between HIV and AIDS. “‘AIDS’ [is] an acronym for Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, which is not a virus, but a diagnosis given to people who have HIV and have fallen below a certain amount of T-cells (about 200/ cubic millileter[sic]) or have been diagnosed with an opportunistic infection.” This is an important distinction to make. An HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) diagnosis necessarily comes before an AIDS diagnosis. And, while people are living longer and longer with HIV – sometimes never contracting AIDS – the diagnosis still seems to be riddled with shame, and misrecognition.


The real question is: why do people seem to know so little about HIV and AIDS? One would think that a disease with so many casualties across the globe would be front of mind for most governmental health agencies and social groups. But, that just isn’t the case when it comes to HIV/AIDS. Even though black people only make up about 14% of the American population, we still account for almost half of new HIV/AIDS diagnoses. Issues of poverty, low health education, gender inequality, and homophobia create marginal impacts for the social group most at risk of contracting the disease. And, stigmas, especially those in the black community, have turned HIV/AIDS into a secret subject only up for conversation in esoteric circles.


Rodriguez made a point to explain that most of the lack of knowledge in communities of color comes from several sources – usually out of their control.


“People are not terribly knowledgeable about HIV/AIDS overall, but not due to any fault of their own. Many people have not had access to sexual education classes that encompass HIV education for many different reasons. Many puritanical schools don’t teach enough about HIV and when they do, the education is all fear-based and stigmatizing. Everyone lives on a continuum of risk. There are some people who, due to their socioeconomic status and geographical location are more at risk for HIV infection and more likely to enter into a sexual situation with an HIV-positive person. Also, different sexual behaviors have different levels of risk. While abstinence or masturbation have no risk, some activities are low to medium risk (like oral sex), while some activities are high risk (unprotected anal intercourse).”


And, while communities of color are at highest risk of contracting HIV/AIDS, they are often at the margins of society. To me, low health literacy and lack of education regarding HIV/AIDS risk are probably the most devastating for the black community. In America, black people frequently experience shaming and minority status which isolates us from the mainstream. Lowered access to health information and medical resources can only exacerbate the risks of HIV/AIDS.


Thinking back to my first exposure to HIV/AIDS awareness via the tattered old poster that almost no one could see, it was the commingling of these issues that likely prompted the ad in the first place. When I asked Rodriguez about common misconceptions about HIV and AIDS, he echoed this universal lack of knowledge stating, ”In order to contract HIV, you need two things: a bodily fluid of an HIV-positive person (Semen, pre-ejaculate, blood, breastmilk, vaginal fluids) and a port of entry (the bloodstream, mouth, anus, vagina). At the site, we commonly get questions about people getting HIV through touching doorknobs, or kissing or sitting next to someone with HIV.”


Just imagine how that feels for the HIV-positive person. While we are all walking around fearful about interchanging in basic social situations, they may choose to simply hideaway to avoid the awkwardness of sharing their health status. I mean, wouldn’t you do the same thing?


I can’t say that anyone has ever shared their HIV-positive status with me. While I have heard rumors or known of folks passing away from AIDS, I have never had the opportunity to advocate or be a support system for someone living with the diagnosis. Hopefully, President Obama and other leaders in DC will get their acts together in addressing the global HIV/AIDS epidemic. For now though, Rodriguez made it clear that there are several key facets of being a successful advocate for HIV-positive persons.


“The first step to being an HIV/AIDS advocate/ ally is to educate yourself. The second one is to get tested and encourage friends to get tested. The third is to make sure that you are a resource to anyone that you know is HIV-positive. If someone shares their status with you, do not freak out. Make sure they are OK and in medical care and thank them for sharing that piece of themselves with you.”


And, advocacy means knowing that there are major medical innovations happening at this very minute. The HIV/AIDS understanding of our moms and dads is a thing of the past. And, it just isn’t the death sentence that many believe it to be.


“Know that HIV doesn’t have to be scary and if you educate yourself and those around you, you can avoid it, but you can also be kind and loving to those who are HIV positive.”


In many ways, my first exposure to HIV/AIDS advocacy will be the lasting image for me. It was the first thing teaching me that I couldn’t contract the virus by bumping into someone on the bus or sharing a fork with them during lunch.But, posters just aren’t enough. They aren’t salient enough to save lives. They may draw attention to the issue but they will never fully address an epidemic that claims nearly 40 million people in a year across the globe.


So, I guess what we all need to know this World AIDS Day is that HIV/AIDS is not some pseudo-rarefied diagnosis we can simply ignore away. Believing we are so distant from HIV/AIDS that it isn’t even worthy of our attention begets only ignorance or further shame. I choose not to turn a blind eye not just today but going forward. Will you join me?

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Anthony Anderson “Keeps It Real” About Overcoming Being Identified As The “Fat Funny Guy”

By Derrick Lane

Anderson started out in Hollywood as a self-proclaimed “fat, funny guy,” appearing alongside fellow comedic stars Jim Carrey and Martin Lawrence.

But offscreen, Anderson’s weight was anything but a laughing matter: He was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in 2002 at the age of 32.

It took a few years, but eventually, Anderson realized he had to get serious, and so he committed to changing his eating habits and lifestyle. Around the same time, Anderson also made a conscious decision to shift the direction of his career, focusing on darker roles in movies, such as Hustle & Flow and Martin Scorsese’s The Departed, and co-starring in television dramas like The Shield and K-Ville.

Inspired by his family history of the disease, Anderson recently became a spokesperson for FACE Diabetes, an initiative sponsored by the pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly that focuses on educating and empowering the African American community.

My Diagnosis…

I was home in Los Angeles, close to eight years ago now. Out of the blue, I started feeling really lethargic and lazy, taking mid-afternoon naps, which is something I wouldn’t just do. I chalked it up to overworking. I just thought I was running myself ragged. But the turning point was one evening I drank, literally, a 5-gallon jug of water in the course of a couple of hours, and there was constant urination. I knew what the symptoms of diabetes were since my father was a diabetic, and I was like “Wow, I think I need to go to the doctor and get this checked out (okay, actually, my wife said that).” I went the next morning and found out that I had elevated glucose levels and the doctor said, “You know you’re a type 2 diabetic.”

My first reaction:

I didn’t change dramatically at first. Being a 32-year-old man, stubborn and all that, I was really just stuck in my ways and I thought, “I can beat this. I can handle this.” But after a while, it wasn’t getting better. Now, I’ve really changed my lifestyle. I’m eating differently, and I’m also incorporating exercise. I have a treadmill that was just collecting dust in my house, and I started to run 3 miles a day on it. When I get bored with that, I go outside and run around the golf course.

Recently, I met with Bob Harper from The Biggest Loser, and I said, “Bob, come on, give me a quick fix on how to lose some weight.” And he laughed and said, “Anthony, you know there’s no quick fix to that.” Then he said, “But, I’ll give you a tip: If you don’t do anything else, just cut your meal portions in half, and watch and see what happens. The weight will fall off of you.” I said, “That’s an easy fix,” and I just cut my meals in half and the weight did come off. This is the first time I’ve stuck with a regimen. As a result, since January 2009, I’ve lost close to 40 pounds and have kept it off…and plan on keeping it off.

My turning point:

I want to skydive, and one place I called told me you can’t weigh more than 235 pounds, because you do it in tandem with the instructor and all the equipment. And I said, I weigh 240 pounds. What can I do?” I was laughing over the phone, but, deadpan, the lady on the other end said, “Lose 5 pounds.” I was like, “Wow, OK.” Now I’m well below 235, and I’m going to jump out of a plane!

In all seriousness, I didn’t have a bad episode or anything. But I thought, “If I’m going to have this for any length of time, I want to be on top of it and in control.” Especially in case anything were to happen, or something was suddenly out of the ordinary with my blood sugar levels or the disease. I wanted to be able to say with a clear conscience, I did the best I could.

My lifestyle:

Once I talked to the nutritionists and my doctor, and they said, “Anthony, everything is fine in moderation; you can still eat certain things, you just can’t eat as much,” then it was OK. Once I wrapped my mind around that, I said, “I can have short ribs every now and then, just not every weekend like I was doing over the summer, and not steak every two days like I was doing, but maybe once a month, and fried chicken once a month.” I can still satisfy my cravings and urge for that. I just don’t feed it like I used to.

My treatment strategy:

CLICK HERE to read more:


Laila Ali Shares 5 Tips To Help Tackle Baby Weight

Former female boxing champ, fitness expert, and mother, Laila Ali, daughter of boxing legend Muhammad Ali, made an appearance on “NBC Today” recently and shared what women can do to shed the baby weight after bringing their new bundle of joy into the world.

It’s no secret that losing weight is often an up hill process. It takes hard work, commitment, focus. Listen in as Laila shares 5 tips to help tackle baby weight.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

VIDEO: What An Inspiration! 110 Year Old Man Credits His Health To 5 Foods.

By Team BLAM

Here’s a little inspiration for those of us trying to create some new healthy habits in 2012.

Check out this amazing story about Bernardo LaPallo, a 110-year-old man, who credits his good heath to five foods. LaPallo said that his father’s advice and these simple foods helped him reach his milestone birthday.

“You are what you eat,” LaPallo explained.

These are the 5 foods LaPallo credits for his good health below:

1. Garlic

2. Honey

3. Cinnamon

4. Chocolate

5. Olive Oil

This One’s For The Fellas. Charles Barkley Is The New Spokesperson For Weight Watchers

Last week, NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley was introduced as the newest spokesperson for Weight Watchers’ new online campaign aimed strictly at men.

During his exclusive introduction interview, the TNT basketball analyst said that after retiring from the league in 2000, he packed on 100 pounds to his 6’ ft. 6” frame, ballooning to a whopping 350 pounds.

Barkley said he got his ‘wake up call’ when he paid a trip to the doctor.

“The doctor said, ‘Hey, dude, if you don’t lost some weight, you’re either going to get diabetes, have a stroke or drop dead. It’s either A, B, or C,” Barkley told USA Today.

As a result, Weight Watchers approached Barkley, and signed him on for the organization’s newest campaign entitled “Lose Like a Man.”

“I felt bloated and big,” says Barkley, who said he lost 14 pounds on his own, then shed another 27 pounds with the help of Weight Watchers.

Check out Barkley’s newest Weight Watcher’s commercial below:

Allright BLAM Fam: Does Barkley’s weight loss give you a little boost of motivation when it comes to losing the weight you need to? Keep it real. 😉

Christmas Craziness! Lots Of Food=Good Time. Not So Much Food=Bad Time. Let’s Get A Grip People!!!

By Craig Harper

Before I even write this piece, I know that I will ruffle some feathers. I know that this topic will polarize you, the reading audience. I’m okay with that. I’m okay with your opinion, as long as you’re okay with mine. We don’t have to agree with each other, merely listen and consider. Feel free to share your constructive thoughts at the end. I’m happy for you to disagree with me, but I won’t give attention to any comment which is abusive or not constructive. Had a few of those lately. When all else fails, go the insult!

I was on ABC radio here in Melbourne on Saturday discussing how we might enjoy the Christmas cheer without enjoying the traditional Christmas weight gain, and let’s just say that my thoughts weren’t met with universal approval from the listening audience. How dare I suggest that we don’t gorge ourselves on Christmas day. I was unaware that ‘moderation’ was a synonym for misery and deprivation. I was also unaware that we ‘deserve’ to eat ourselves to oblivion and that my thoughts on the matter are unrealistic and impractical. The message I got from some listeners is that there exists a direct correlation between calories consumed and ‘Christmas spirit’. And that there also exists a strong link between how much food is on the Christmas lunch/dinner table and having a good time. Lots of food = good time. Not so much food = bad time.

According to some listeners, I’m an idiot and a dickhead. How dare I suggest that we include some healthier options on our Christmas menu and that maybe we don’t continue eating until we explode. What am I thinking? Apparently, the point of Christmas is food. You know that whole ‘three wise men, the manger, Mary, Joseph and the baby Jesus’ thing? Well, turns out that the real meaning of Christmas is to see how much pleasure we can give ourselves via an inordinate amount of calories. Who’da thought?

How could we possibly have festive cheer without the gluttony? It’s what we do. And not doing it, is a form of deprivation. It’s disrespectful. It’s breaking with tradition, and who are we to question our parents and grandparents who paved the way by over-eating before us? We’ve even taken our ‘Christmas cheer’ to a new level. They’d be so proud.

The crazy thing about Christmas is that we actually plan to overeat and we think that’s normal and acceptable. It’s what we do. It’s how we celebrate. And if we don’t indulge ourselves we feel like we’ve ‘missed out’; a little neglected even.

Maybe I’m a freak, but the notion of planning to over-eat on a given day seems kinda stupid to me, especially when I live in a country with one of the fastest growing obesity rates on the planet and more fat (sorry, full-figured, big-boned, voluptuous) people, with more obesity-related medical conditions than ever before. Call me crazy. Call me boring.

Note to self: Craig, don’t describe fat people as fat; it’s offensive, politically incorrect and unprofessional. Not allowed. Calling tall people tall – fine. Skinny people skinny – fine. Funny people funny – fine. Fat people fat… not fine.

I wonder if I can say that I used be to fat? Not full-figured, big-boned or voluptuous… just really fat. A whopper. It’s okay if I’m talking about me, right? Probably not, someone will get grumpy. Okay, we’ll stick with ‘full-figured’, it sounds much nicer. And we love nice. We’re comfortable with that. And we’re addicted to comfort. Reality… not so much. Okay, full-figured it is. Did I ever tell you that I was full-figured teenager? Quite Voluptuous actually. Would have been a great athlete if not for my big bones. Nup, it just doesn’t sound the same.

Isn’t it funny how some of us continue to find a way to get offended, rather than find a way to get healthy? Isn’t it also amusing how people get mad at me for stating an obvious reality (that an individual might be obese, for example) but not mad at themselves for what they have done to their body. Of course I would never walk up to someone and call them fat, but when I am discussing health and all it’s related issues in a professional context, I will speak the truth, and I will call obesity what it is; an over-fat body. While some people may use the term ‘fat’ in a derogatory sense, I don’t. I am using it in a scientific and pragmatic sense. I am referring to a person’s physiological state. Full stop.

While I had my share of supporters (back to the Saturday radio thing now) who thought I was speaking some common sense, there were others who asserted that “people like me are perpetuating eating disorders” and that I was “a self-righteous moron”. One woman told me that I was “dull and boring” and that I was a member of the “fun police” because I suggested that we moderate our food intake on Christmas day. I also had numerous abusive text messages. All in all, a fun time for me.

Okay so here’s exactly what I think about ho, ho, ho-ing into those Christmas calories:

1. Of course it’s okay to enjoy food, look forward to a meal (or ten) and to incorporate some ‘treat’ foods into your Christmas food plan. The occasional splurge is fine, but not when it lasts for two weeks or two months. The biggest eating issue at this time of the year is simply the ridiculous volume of food we consume… and not for one day. We eat because it’s there. Because it’s free. Because it’s at our finger tips. Because we’ve worked hard all year (and therefore we must overeat – go figure) and one of my personal faves… because it’s all paid for! Wouldn’t wanna waste anything would we? Imagine a world where we ate because we actually needed food, rather than wanted it, medicated with it, socialised with it or rewarded ourselves with it. What a concept. Crazy, I know. That’ll never catch on. Needs-based eating… not a chance.

2. It’s not okay to plan to overeat. I know this kind of thinking puts me in the minority, but I don’t care. People can rationalise over-eating with whatever weird-ass, self-serving psychology they like, but the truth is, it’s destructive and bad for our bodies. I am amazed at the ability we (we the society) have to justify stupid behaviour because it simply makes us feel good (for about an hour). One woman said to me recently “but yer gotta live” and when I asked her “so if you don’t over-eat at Christmas, does that mean you’re not living?” She got grumpy. Of course. When there is no logic left for you, reach for the insult or the indignant eye roll and heavy sigh.

3. Some traditions are stupid and destructive. I don’t care how long you’ve been doing it ‘that way’. My great grandparents, my grandparents and my parents all smoked… quite the tradition really.

4. We are pleasure addicts and we associate food with pleasure, therefore more food equals more pleasure. But what happens five minutes after we finish our Christmas lunch binge? We feel physically ill, we feel tired, we regret eating so much and we put our body in a state of stress because our digestive system is working triple-time trying to deal with an extreme over-supply of food. Excess food that our body doesn’t want, but our mind tells us we need to enjoy the ‘Christmas experience’. What a load of crap.

5. I love food. It’s why I was a fat kid. Sorry, voluptuous. Full-figured. And I know that food can be a source of pleasure in a healthy, sensible eating strategy. I look forward to my mother’s Christmas lunch and yes, I will enjoy some ‘Christmas foods’ and some pudding. But no, I won’t eat mountains of it. And no, I won’t feel sick or regretful afterwards. I know that I don’t need to over-eat to have a good day. Actually, I may substitute the pudding for cheesecake.

6. “But surely Craig, you are being a little ‘food police’ on us; it’s only one day?” Good question. I actually don’t care too much about that one day of the year. If it was only about over-eating on one day out of three sixty five, I wouldn’t write this piece and we wouldn’t have a problem, but you know, and I know, it’s not. It’s about the entire Christmas/New Year period. Some of us over-eat for a month. Some of us for a lifetime. It’s the psychology and the mentality behind the Christmas excess (not just that one meal) which is of concern to me. I have worked with many people (over the years) who have gained between 3-5 kgs (6.5-11lbs) over the Christmas/New Year period. They always regret it. Emotionally, mentally and physically, they feel horrible. I worked with a guy a few years ago who gained 10kgs (22lbs) between Christmas day and the end of January – quite the effort. It took him three months to lose.

7. Do not mis-interpret what I am saying. I am not saying don’t eat or don’t enjoy your Christmas meals. I am saying don’t use Christmas as a way to justify gluttony. Eating – fine. Stuffing yourself with an excess of food – not fine.

For me, Christmas is about giving, laughing, relaxing, hanging out with my family, being grateful for what I have and listening to my Dad sing (for want of a better term) all those carols. Again. I really wish he’d get a new CD.

Craig Harper is one of Australia’s most respected professional speakers and educators in the field of human performance. He is a highly sought-after corporate coach and is considered to be a leader in the areas of personal development, having worked with hundreds of teams, companies and organizations on numerous continents over the last twenty years. Visit him at

VIDEO: Steve Harvey Shares The Best Way To Get Your Man To Go To The Doctor.

By Team BLAM

In this behind the scenes interview of Steve Harvey on the Dr. Oz show, Steve talks about how to motivate your man to take care of himself and what his wife does with him. It’s sooo simple ya’ll. We, wives, have more tools than we realize. In fact, his advice can be transferred to a lot of areas in our relationships when we want our spouse to be more open, willing, or cooperative. Check it out and leave a comment with your thoughts.