ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How Brad Pitt can boost your health

Updated on July 1, 2016
Brad Pitt
Brad Pitt

Whether it's skipping a spinning class to slob out on the sofa or having a good gossip when you should be working, we all have our naughty moments. But now there's no need to feel guilty - hooray! - because new research* reveals that rebellion can work wonders for our wellbeing, making us feel happier, younger and less stressed.

"Doing what is perceived as 'the right thing' all the time is impossible," says Liz Tucker, stress counsellor and founder of the health and wellbeing .

"Putting pressure on yourself to behave in a certain way can lead to anxiety, and feelings of disappointment and failure when you don't live up to your high standards." So cut yourself some slack and be a bad girl.

DAYDREAMING... helps solve problems
Find yourself dreaming of Brad Pitt mid-meeting? You could be boosting your brain power at the same time. A recent study published in the Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences found that when your mind wanders, areas in your brain associated with complex problem-solving buzz with activity. Through brain scans, researchers found that when we daydream, the brain's 'executive network' - the part associated with complex problem-solving - becomes extremely active.

Do it well: "When you daydream, your mind may actually be addressing important questions in your life, such as your career or relationship issues," explains psychologist Dr Kalina Christoff. Put it into practice. When you're working on a complex problem but drawing a mental blank, switch to a simpler task like watching Coronation Street or reading a trashy novel. Letting your mind wander could help you find a solution. Just make sure you do it when you're doing routine tasks like the washing-up or hoovering - not when you're at work or driving!

GOSSIP...soothes anxiety
You know how you feel so much better after a good chat with the girls? Well, it's all down to hormones. Recent studies by the University of Michigan revealed that gossiping increases our levels of progesterone, the hormone that reduces anxiety and stress, and promotes good sleep.

Do it well: The kind of gossip that benefits your health (instead of getting you into fights) is the type that focuses on emotional bonding and exchanging intimate details about your life. OK, so you don't need to share the colour of your knickers with everyone, but the study found that women who asked each other chatty questions about themselves - rather than serious questions on more 'intellectual' subjects - bonded better and had increased levels of progesterone.

LAZINESS... makes you live longer
Step into your slippers, because more sleep, less work and less extreme exercise are key to a longer life, according to public health scientist Professor Peter Axt. "Sleeping eight or nine hours every night, taking naps, avoiding long work hours and extreme exercise all help limit stress," he explains. "In turn that stops your adrenal glands becoming overworked and depleting your immune system."

Do it well: "Waste half your free time," suggests Professor Axt. "People who take a midday nap instead of playing squash have a better chance of living into old age." To become more 'strategically lazy' at work, Peter Taylor, author of new book The Lazy Project Manager, suggests taking time every morning to reflect on what's important to get done that day. "Each morning, identify three tasks that will most benefit you - whether you're a stay-at-home mum or a company executive - then work on completing them as a matter of priority."

SKIPPING HOUSEWORK... reduces allergies
Research suggests cleaning isn't the saintly duty it's cracked up to be. A study of 14,000 children by Bath and Brunel Universities found that women who used a lot of chemical cleaning products like bleach and air freshener during pregnancy or after giving birth increased their child's risk of asthma and allergies. And exposing kids to such chemicals early in life increased their chances of developing asthma by the age of seven by 41 per cent.

Do it well: When you do have a scrubbing session, use fewer chemicals. We love Method cleaning products, which are chemical-free and eco-friendly . If you suffer from night or morning allergies, try leaving the bed covers thrown back. Experts at Allergy US say this can help dry out any moisture your body has generated overnight. That's good news because the dust mites that cause allergies love moist bed sheets. Eek!

SWEARING... eases pain
Gordon Ramsay may be on to something. According to new research by Keele University's School Of Psychology, the reason you feel so much better after a good swear is that an emotional response triggers the reduction of physical pain in the body.

Do it well: Researchers also discovered that swearing reduced the perception of pain more strongly in women, who swore less, than in men, who swore more. So rather than using bad language at the drop of a hat, wait until you need a full-scale blowout, then see how much better you feel afterwards.

SLEEPING IN... makes you slim
Result! Enjoying a lazy lie-in may actually help you lose weight. "Sleep is essential for balancing key hormones such as insulin, cortisol, leptin and ghrelin, which are responsible for keeping your appetite, fat and metabolism in check," explains Professor Nadir Farid, an expert on hormones. In fact, a study conducted by Ohio's Case Western Reserve University, which followed 70,000 women for 16 years, found that those who slept five or fewer hours a night were 30 per cent more likely to put on at least 2t, compared to those who got enough sleep.

Do it well: Most experts agree that going to sleep at the same time every night and waking up at the same time each morning is healthiest. Nutritionist Charlotte Watts of says: "The time when you want to sleep more will be dictated by your unique internal body clock. If you need an extra hour's sleep in the morning and you can fit it in, take it!"

**44 per cent of us admit to slobbing around in our pyjamas all day **

An extra hour in bed could help you live longer and lose weight
An extra hour in bed could help you live longer and lose weight


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)