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How Words Healed Me

How Words Healed Me

No-one now is a greater believer in therapy than me. But hitherto there’s been one huge problem with talking cures: finding the right therapist. It took me several years, three therapists and hundreds of pounds before I found Sarah who then transformed my life. First I had to believe that I needed to embark on therapy. I was initially resistant. Eventually it was my psychiatrist who persuaded me of how valuable therapy can be. A person, unlike a pill, can listen to your story when you are well enough to tell it, and give you a fresh perspective, he said....
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Is Your Brain Male or Female?

Is Your Brain Male or Female?

BBC Horizon's recent programme, “Is your brain male or female?”  made a valiant yet narrow minded attempt at measure and reason. I offer this blog to anyone who remains as riled as I by Michael Mosley’s acceptance of Simon Baron-Cohen’s carefully paired claim that, “The male brain is predominantly hard-wired for understanding and building systems,” and, “The female brain is predominantly hard-wired for empathy.” The first evidence cluster is derived from animal behaviour.  For example, male great apes engage in more play fighting than female great apes, and...
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Bare Reality: 100 Women and their Breasts

Bare Reality: 100 Women and their Breasts

There has been so much public debate about breasts recently, from Free the Nipple to No More Page 3, from breastfeeding selfies on Facebook to Rihanna on the red carpet. I think the time has never been better to hear how women really feel about their breasts, and to see how they really look.  I have always been fascinated by the dichotomy between women’s personal lives and how they are depicted by the media; between how we feel about breasts privately and how they are presented for public consumption. We see images of breasts everywhere in the media and yet...
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Faster Isn't Always Better

Faster Isn't Always Better

In today’s fast-moving world, it is difficult to find time to work out, let along to stop and stretch our muscles. Understandable, perhaps, that when it comes to stretching versus cardio, cardio often wins out.  We fit in a high intensity exercise class between work, the school run, dinner and bed; if we burn 600 calories in a fast-class, we don’t have to worry about an extra glass of sauvignon, right? Wrong. Sadly, the net effect of our always-on-the-go lives is a constant adrenalin rush that can leave us more frazzled than when we started. Too much cardio and not...
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Men In Therapy: Why Are We Holding Back?

Men In Therapy: Why Are We Holding Back?

Why do men become therapy clients? We can also ask why men become therapists. Are men’s aims and goals, as clients and practitioners, different from those of women and, if so, have therapists really recognised this? Or, just as so many aspects of culture take the male as the norm, could it be that, for contemporary therapy, it's the female model that prevails? And men simply have to fit in. We know that men die younger than women, commit suicide more frequently, and are slower to take serious symptoms of illness to the doctor. We assume that men aren't as likely as...
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Fat: The Facts about Fat in your Diet

Fat: The Facts about Fat in your Diet

A low fat diet can seem an obvious answer to our dietary and health concerns; however it's becoming increasingly clear that fats are indeed an essential component of our body’s functioning. One of the most harmful secrets about low-fat options is that they are often packed with sugar or other unhealthy substitutions so that the product does not compromise on taste. Nutritionist Christine Bailey, who thinks fats are the most unfairly “demonised” nutrition group, says: “Many consumers still believe ‘low-fat’ foods are the healthiest options. This is inaccurate and...
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