Healthy Byte: Fitness Myths

2016-03-02-1456933276-7777566-FitnessLies_1.jpegCredit: Jacob Lund/Shutterstock


In a world where everyone has a body, and therefore has an opinion on that body, the number of misconceptions surrounding physical fitness is astounding. Despite years of research refuting some of these long-held fitness myths, they continue to be passed around and passed down from gym generation to gym generation in a frighteningly inaccurate oral history of the human body.

These are just a few of the glaringly obvious fitness lies it’s insane people still believe.

Muscle weighs more than fat

A pound of muscle weighs a pound. A pound of fat weighs a pound. Duh, right?

Then why do people keep claiming muscle weighs more than fat? It’s because people confuse weight with volume. Muscle is more dense than fat. A pound of muscle takes up less space than a pound of fat, but when do you talk about your fat or muscle in terms of a specific volume?

The easy solution is to stop saying, “Muscle weighs more than fat,” and to start saying, “A pound of muscle takes up less space than a pound of fat.” Or just avoid the topic altogether.

2016-03-02-1456933342-3359179-FitnessLies_2.jpegCredit: Flickr/John Loo

You need to be in the “fat-burning zone” to burn fat
This is just fundamentally untrue.

Your body’s energy requirements operate on an upwardly angled line, more or less. As you move from sitting to walking to jogging to sprinting along the x-axis, your body’s energy needs increase along the y-axis. Your body has to break down stored fat and carbohydrates (muscle glycogen and blood glucose) to produce this increased demand for energy.

The thing is, your body doesn’t break down just one source of fuel or the other — it’s constantly breaking down a ratio of the two. At lower intensities (say, sitting or walking), your body uses a greater ratio of fat to carbohydrate. Hence the name “fat-burning zone.”

As exercise intensity increases, the ratio eventually flip-flops and you start burning a higher ratio of carbohydrates to fats. But since your total energy requirement has continued to rise, you actually burn more total calories and total calories from fats than you would during lower-intensity “fat-burning zone” training. So, for example, if you’re burning six calories per minute at a 4:2 fat-to-carb ratio during jogging, you’re still burning fewer fat calories than you would at a higher-intensity sprint of 11 calories per minute at a 5:6 fat-to-carb ratio.

Protein supplements are a requirement for muscle growth
PROTEIN is a requirement for muscle growth, but protein SUPPLEMENTS are not. The building blocks of proteins — amino acids — are absolutely necessary for muscle protein synthesis and repair after exercise, and protein supplements like protein bars and powders can, of course, provide the necessary amino acids.

But you know what else can provide the necessary amino acids? Real food. Like chicken, tuna, eggs, milk, or these vegetarian-friendly sources of protein.

I’m not saying there’s no room for supplements, but believing you can’t see results in the gym without supplementation is like believing you can’t go to work without stopping at Starbucks. One is not a requirement to successfully complete the other.

Lifting weights while pregnant will hurt the baby
As long as a woman was lifting weights prior to her pregnancy, and as long as her doctor clears her to exercise, there’s no reason she can’t continue to train throughout pregnancy. This isn’t the Middle Ages, or even the 1950s. Women aren’t dainty flowers, and pregnancy isn’t an illness.

In fact, women who prioritize exercise throughout pregnancy have easier labors and recoveries than those who don’t. So, uh, yeah, lifting weights while pregnant can actually be a really good thing. Stop treating it like it’s a capital offense.


Originally Posted HERE

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NOTE: This does NOT work for everybody – but it is always good to know what factors studies continues to find that may help those who are just starting.

No matter how you feel about the weighing yourself, Dietitian Julie Upton, MS, RD, of Appetite For Health, shares details from a new study on how the scale can help with weight loss. download

According to a first-of-its-kind study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, researchers from Duke University Obesity Prevention Program reported that those who weighed themselves daily lost about three times as much weight and body fat, compared to those stepped on the scale less frequently.

The Duke obesity researchers enrolled 47 overweight men and women into a weight loss clinical trial that used electronic scales that were networked to the researchers’ computer network. All subjects were instructed to weigh in daily and were given some basic advice about healthy eating and exercise behaviors (i.e., increase water consumption, walk more, eat fewer snacks, enjoy more fruits/veggies).

Using data from the subjects’ escales, the researchers could objectively track the frequency of weigh-ins as well as the actual weights recorded. Previous studies have relied on subjects’ self-reported information about weigh-ins, which is considered less reliable.

After six months, the researchers evaluated both body weight and composition of all subjects and found that those who weighed in daily (51 percent of all subjects) lost an average of 20 pounds, compared to about seven pounds lost among those who weighed themselves about five days per week. Subjects who weighed themselves daily were also more likely to report following through on more healthy diet and lifestyle behaviors.

The authors concluded: “Daily weighing may trigger the self-regulatory processes that promote behavior change. Those who weigh daily report greater adoption of diet and exercise behaviors associated with weight control.”

Originally Posted HERE

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Healthy Byte: High Fat & Nutritionally Balance Diets


Alternating diet between high fat, balanced may help control obesity, study finds
Researchers at the University of Georgia’s College of Pharmacy have discovered that alternating between a high fat and a more nutritionally balanced diet at regular intervals may help prevent or treat obesity and its associated metabolic disorders. They published their findings recently in the journal Scientific Reports.

For their study, scientists fed mice a high fat diet for five days before switching the animals to regular feed for a period of one, two or five days. They repeated this cycle for several weeks and observed the effects.

They found that switching to a regular diet for two or five days between periods of high fat intake not only helped control body weight, it also improved insulin sensitivity and prevented the accumulation of fat in the liver, two common side effects of obesity.

“Maintaining a proper diet requires a lot of willpower, and one of the problems we see very often with modern weight loss programs is that people cannot sustain a restricted diet over long periods of time,” said Dexi Liu, the Panoz Professor of Pharmacy at UGA. “The temptation to eat becomes overwhelming, and many people end up regaining the weight they’ve lost, so we wanted to see if there may be an alternative to these diets.”

Mice were allowed to eat as much food as they wanted during every phase of the study. The researchers also maintained two control groups, one of which received only a high fat diet and another that received only regular feed.

While mice that received only a high fat diet predictably gained weight, those fed an alternating diet closely mirrored the control group that received only regular feed in terms of their body weight, liver health and glucose sensitivity.

“The mice that received an alternating diet maintained body weight similar to mice that only received a regular diet,” Liu said. “They also had much lower levels of inflammation, which can contribute to the development of metabolic disorders like diabetes.”

Liu and his co-authors Yongjie Ma and Mingming Gao also found that an alternating diet can reverse obesity in mice. To test this, they fed a group of obese mice an alternating diet for five weeks, which led to a 12 percent reduction in fat mass compared to control animals.

“These results suggest that it may be possible to eat the foods you like, and to do so with pleasure, as long as those habits are tempered with periods of rest,” Liu said.
While he cautions that their results in an animal model do not necessarily translate directly to humans, Liu and his colleagues think that an alternating diet similar to the one used in their experiments could serve as the foundation for new dietary guidelines.

“Obesity is a complex disorder, and there are many factors that can contribute to excessive weight gain,” Liu said. “There are, for example, genetic differences that may influence how easily a person gains or loses weight, but we believe that diet is still the dominant factor.

“Ultimately, we want to find ways to help make people healthy, and an alternating diet may be a more practical way for people to live a healthier life.”

Originally Posted HERE

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Healthy Byte: Weight Loss Myths

While some have tried pretty shocking techniques to lose weight, there are also some common, long-held techniques that seem like a good idea — and may even work at first — but are absolutely going to backfire and end up causing weight gain. If you’re on a quest to a slimmer you, avoid doing these five things.

Having a Cut-Off Time For Eating

If you’ve heard that you shouldn’t eat past 6, 7, or 8 p.m. in order to lose weight, that’s just not true. Food eaten at night doesn’t automatically get stored as fat, as previously believed. What time you stop eating has nothing to do with how much weight you’ll gain or lose — it’s the total calories you consume in a day that matters. If you are a late-night snacker, opt for healthier options that are easy to digest.


Whether it’s all carbs, all gluten, all sugar, all baked goods, or all whatever, certified dietitian Leslie Langevin, MS, RD, CD, of Whole Health Nutrition believes this is not a life your pizza-ice-cream-pasta-loving self can sustain. After a period of forced deprivation, most people will just throw in the towel and devour an enormous plate of whatever they’re living without, says Langevin. Or, if they are able to go through a period of elimination, once they go back to eating these foods, the weight they lost will slowly creep back on. When it comes to maintaining weight loss, moderation is key.

Subscribing to a Low-Fat Diet

Going no fat or low fat was a huge trend back in the ’90s, a fad that we are glad has mostly passed. Most low-fat foods are packed with sugar to add flavor, and as a result, they end up causing weight gain — especially belly fat. Also of importance is that we’ve since learned that eating healthy fats like avocado, olive oil, and nuts can actually help to increase metabolism and can burn away belly fat. Healthy fats also fill you up longer, so go ahead and add nuts to your smoothie, avocado to your soup, or roast your veggies in olive oil.

Skipping Out on Meals

In order to lose weight, you need to create a calorie deficit. And while reducing the number of calories in your diet is one way to do this, skipping an entire meal is not the way to go. Starving the body can slow down its metabolism and lead to overeating later. And let’s face it, if you’re running on empty, you won’t have the energy for a calorie-crushing workout later. Beyond adopting a healthier diet in general, the best way to reduce your calorie intake is to find ways to make healthy swaps in your favorite foods and also by choosing lower-calorie foods that are high in fiber, protein, or whole grains, which can better keep you full.

Only Exercising

Working out is definitely part of the weight-loss equation, but if you think it means you can eat whatever you want, you’re not going to be happy with the results. Keep in mind that a 30-minute run at a pace of six mph (10 minutes per mile) burns about 270 calories. In order to lose a pound a week, you need to burn or cut out 500 calories a day. So that means coupled with your 30-minute workout, you still need to cut out 220 calories from your diet, which most likely does not translate to eating everything in sight. Research actually proves that “abs are made in the kitchen,” which means that what you eat — focusing on eating healthy portions throughout the day — can be even more important than how much you work out.

Originally Posted HERE

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Healthy Byte: Simple Ways to Keep the Weight Off


So you want to drop a couple sizes. You know the drill: Eat more veggies; fewer cookies. Drink more water; less soda. Work out a few times a week.

Still, while most of us know the basics of healthy living, getting trim is hard work.

That’s why we recently talked to exercise scientist Philip Stanforth, executive director of the Fitness Institute of Texas and a professor of exercise science at the University of Texas, to find out more about what to look out for when losing weight.

He told us there are three main obstacles that face most people who are trying to lose weight, and overcoming them can make a huge difference.

1. We spend way too much time sitting

“In the world we live today to think people could not be overweight is ridiculous, because in the normal course of the day we expend so few calories,” said Stanforth. “The chances are much higher that we’re going to eat more than that.” In other words, a daily regimen of sitting at our desks, driving to and from work, and ordering takeout probably means we’re going to end up eating more than we burn off.

(Nathan O’Nions/flickr)
This, plus the fact that much of the food we eat comes stuffed with calorie-rich sugar and fat, makes evening out this ratio of burning to eating even harder.

There are some simple solutions to a sedentary lifestyle, though. While research has shown that simply working outwon’t cut it, getting up for a few minutes every hour might just do the trick.

2. We’re really, really bad at remembering what we’ve eaten and how much exercise we’ve done

Even when we’re making an effort to be more conscious of what we’re putting into our bodies and how active we are, we tend to give ourselves more credit than we deserve.

“People tend to overestimate their physical activity and underestimate how much food they eat,” Stanforth said. “They consistently think they’ve worked out more and consistently think they’ve eaten less.”

(Flickr/IRRI Photos)
Several recent studies back up Stanforth’s observations. In a recent editorial published in the Mayo Clinic’s peer-reviewed journal, Mayo Clinic Proceedings, the researchers wrote: “The assumption that human memory can provide accurate or precise reproductions of past ingestive behavior is indisputably false.”

The problem here isn’t just that memories aren’t reliable historical records — it’s also that we often overlook the calories in many of the foods we eat habitually.

Take coffee, for instance. Black coffee has just about 2 calories — less than a stick of sugar-free gum. But cream and sugar can add anywhere from 25-150 calories per serving.

“Most people will think, ‘Oh I had a coffee this morning and coffee has few-to-no calories,’ so it’s not significant,” says Stanforth.“ But when you add cream and sugar, that can end up being far more significant.”

3. Our portion sizes are way, way out of proportion

In recent years, the amount of food we consider to be a single serving has ballooned. In some foods, it’s increased as much as a whopping 138%. What most people would think of as a serving of ice cream, for example, is probably about a cup. In reality, though, a 230-calorie “serving” of Ben and Jerry’s is half a cup, or just about 8 large spoonfuls!

“Portion size is a big problem,” says Stanforth. “Most people would say, ‘Well that looks like a serving,’ but in reality it’s two or three servings.”

Think of this the time you’re out to eat. If you get a bowl of pasta, consider taking half to-go. If you’re eating family-style, start by covering half your plate in salad greens.

Originally Posted HERE

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Special Edition: Women’s History Month


Meet The Women Who Changed Your Life

What does it take to make history? From Susan B. Anthony to Rosa Parks to Ruth Bader Ginsburg, there’s been no shortage of women who weren’t afraid to fight the good fight and change the world. In celebration of Women’s History Month, we’re putting the spotlight on the contributions of women in history by honoring the pioneers who made major advances in civil rights, women’s suffrage, racial equality, environmental justice, reproductive rights, and much, much more. Ahead, we’ve rounded up the stories behind some of the most influential women, ever. And make sure to check back often; we’re adding a new name to the list every day in March.

Emily Dickinson
(1830 – 1886)

Her mark on history: American poet

How life would be different without her: Emily Dickinson, though not published as a poet until after her death, revolutionized the art of poetry. Her frequently untitled poems bucked convention with unusual punctuation and rhyme schemes, as well as a frequent focus on morbid subjects, like death and illness. In the years since her death, Dickinson has come to be considered one of the greatest American poets and is taught in schools across the country.

Her words to live by:Luck is not chance— / It’s Toil—

Aretha Franklin
(born 1942)

Her mark on history: Legendary singer and musician

How life would be different without her: If you’ve ever power-sung Franklin’s version of “Respect” in the shower, she’s changed your life. Besides her effect on everyone’s start-of-the-day confidence levels, the Queen of Soul made multiple historic firsts in the music industry. In 1987, she was the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 2005, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom. In 2010, Rolling Stone listed her as #1 on its listof 100 Greatest Singers, calling Franklin “a gift from God.”

Her words to live by: “All I’m asking for is a little respect.”

Betty Friedan
(1921 – 2006)

Her mark on history: Feminist leader and author of The Feminine Mystique

How life would be different without her: Betty Friedan wasn’t the sole instigator of second-wave feminism, but it wouldn’t have looked the same without her. Friedan helped found two of the biggest organizations for women’s rights, the National Organization for Women and the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws, which would develop into NARAL Pro-Choice America. Additionally, she wrote The Feminine Mystique, a landmark book addressing the depression and unhappiness of women forced by society into the role of homemaker or mother, which she called “the problem that has no name.”

Her words to live by: “A girl should not expect special privileges because of her sex, but neither should she ‘adjust’ to prejudice and discrimination,” Friedan wrote.

Noor Inayat Khan
(1914 – 1944)

Her mark on history: World War II spy and member of the French Resistance

How life would be different without her: Noor (also known as Nora) Inayat Khan was one of the many under-recognized female war heroes who risked — and in some cases sacrificed — their lives to help defeat Nazism. A descendant of Indian nobility, she was recruited by the British to sneak her way into Nazi-occupied France and work as a radio operator. As the Gestapo rounded up her comrades, Inayat Khan became the last remaining link holding open vital communications between Allied forces and the French Resistance. She evaded capture for months as the Nazis hunted her down. Despite the danger, Inayat Khan refused to leave what had become the “principal and most dangerous” post in occupied France. Eventually captured, she consistently refused to reveal any information under interrogation. She was executed by her captors after 10 months in captivity. In 1949, she was posthumously awardedBritain’s George Cross, for her “conspicuous courage” in her duty.

Her words to live by: “Liberté” was her last word before execution.

Marie Curie
(1867 – 1934)

Her mark on history: Physicist and chemist who discovered multiple chemical elements

How life would be different without her: Curie’s (and husband Pierre’s) research into radioactivity was more than groundbreaking — it was world-changing. Her theory of radioactivity forms the basis for much of the science we have today, including nuclear power and weapons, medical research, and even pieces of your smoke detector. Curie also gave a role model to every little girl who dreams of being a scientist — she was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, shared with her husband for physics in 1903. Curie remains the only woman to win two Nobel Prizes, after winning her second, for chemistry, in 1911.

Her words to live by: “Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and, above all, confidence in ourselves,” Eve, Curie’s daughter, quoted her mother in a 1937 biography.

Toni Morrison
(born 1931)

Her mark on history: The first Black woman to win the Nobel Prize in literature

How life would be different without her: Morrison’s work is varied and diverse, but two themes always stand out: the realities of race and gender. From her 1970 debut, The Bluest Eye, to her most recent 2015 novel, God Help the Child, Morrison’s writing explores what it means to be Black and female in a world that doesn’t value Black women. Morrison has won myriad awards for her work, including a Pulitzer Prize for Beloved in 1988, and the Nobel Prize in literature in 1993. For her win, the Nobel organization simply stated that Morrison “gave the African-American people their history back.”

Her words to live by: “Passion is never enough; neither is skill. But try,” Morrison said in her 1993 Nobel Prize lecture.

Lilly Ledbetter
(born 1938)

Her mark on history: Activist for women’s pay equality

How life would be different without her: In 1998, Lilly Ledbetter filed suit against her former employer, Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company, alleging discrimination based on the fact she had been paid significantly less than her male colleagues. In 2007, the court ruled against Ledbetter, on the grounds that she would have had to bring the suit within six months of the discrimination occurring — even though she didn’t discover the discrepancy until years later. Her story brought attention to the inadequacy of existing legislation to address pay inequality — and two years later, the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which eased the time limitations on filing a pay discrimination claim, was the first piece of legislation President Obama signed into law.

Her words to live by: “Equal pay for equal work is a fundamental American principle,” she said in 2008 speech to the Democratic National Convention.

Alice Paul
(1885 – 1977)

Her mark on history: Suffragist and activist

How life would be different without her: Paul was the main strategist behind the push for women’s voting rights in the 1910s. After moving to England to study in 1907, she became involved in the suffragist movement. She was arrested multiple times while fighting for British women’s right to vote, and went on hunger strikes in prison. When she moved back to the United States, she carried on the fight for women’s rights in her home country. She helped secure the passage of the 19th Amendment to the constitution in 1920, guaranteeing women the right to vote.

In this photo, she toasts Tennessee’s ratification of the Amendment – with a glass of grape juice, since prohibition was in effect at the time.

Her words to live by: “Most reforms, most problems are complicated. But to me there is nothing complicated about ordinary equality,” she said in a 1974 interview with American Heritage Magazine.

Annie Oakley
(1860 – 1926)

Her mark on history: Sharpshooter and performer

How life would be different without her: The woman nicknamed “Little Sure Shot” helped solidify the mythos of the American Old West, becoming the female face of the legends. She earned her fame and reputation performing with Buffalo Bill Cody’s Wild West sideshow, dazzling the crowds with tricks like splitting playing cards along their edges. When war with Spain threatened in 1898, Oakley, then 37, contacted the U.S. government with an offer to raise a regiment of sharpshooting women. Unfortunately for the potential Hollywood war dramas, the government did not take her up on it.

Her words to live by:Aim at a high mark and you will hit it. No, not the first time, nor the second, and maybe not the third. But keep on aiming and keep on shooting for only practice will make you perfect.”

Sally Ride
(1951 – 2012)

Her mark on history: First American woman in space

How life would be different without her: Sally Ride showed millions of little girls that their dreams of being an astronaut were just as valid as their brothers’. But before her historic flight in 1983, she had to put up with a lot of sexism. At a press conference, reporters asked Ride if she cried when things went wrong on the job, and whether space flight would “affect her reproductive organs.” (She acerbically responded, “there’s no evidence of that.”)

It wasn’t until after Ride’s death that the world found out that besides being the first woman, Ride may have been the first LGBT person in space. After her 2012 death from pancreatic cancer, her obituary revealed her 27-year relationship with partner Tam O’Shaughnessy.

Her words to live by: “Studying whether there’s life on Mars or studying how the universe began, there’s something magical about pushing back the frontiers of knowledge,” she said in a 2003 interview with NPR.

Margaret Thatcher
(1925 – 2013)

Her mark on history: As prime minister of the United Kingdom, she was the first woman to lead a major Western democracy.

How life would be different without her: The Iron Lady held the highest office in Britain for more than a decade, from 1979 to 1990. Though her conservative politics were variably received by the country over her tenure, her legacy was influential enough to see her name affixed to a political philosophy. “Thatcherism” has become a shorthand in British politics for an agenda characterized by free markets and a diminished government. After leaving office, she was made a Baroness by the queen, and later awarded the highest honor of all — being played by Meryl Streep.

Her words to live by: “You turn if you want to. The lady’s not for turning!

Louisa May Alcott
(1832 – 1888)

Her mark on history: American literature

How life would be different without her: Alcott’s best-known novel, Little Women, set a bar for both writers and all the tomboys of the world. The novel made the lives of women and girls its central purpose, and her most famous character, Jo March, gave ambitious and temperamental little girls a role model. Alcott’s beloved story has been adapted for film and television multiple times, from a 1919 silent version to the 1994 Winona Ryder classic.

Her words to live by:Love is the only thing that we can carry with us when we go, and it makes the end so easy.

Amelia Earhart
(1897 – 1937)

Her mark on history: The first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean alone

How life would be different without her: Earhart, an aviator born in Kansas, didn’t let her gender stop her from achieving her dreams. She was the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean solo, and she went on to design clothesand to become a faculty consultant at Purdue University. In 1937, Earhart attempted to fly around the world, and her plane disappeared that year. Her legacy continues to inspire pilots of all genders today, and her bravery proved that women (and men) can do whatever they set their minds to. Earhart’s story is still taught to schoolchildren today.

Her words to live by:The most effective way to do it is to do it.

Helen Keller
(1880 – 1968)

Her mark on history: The first deaf and blind person to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree, changing public perception of what a disabled person could accomplish

How life would be different without her: Keller didn’t let the fact that she was blind and deaf stop her from becoming a prominent activist, and she eventually co-founded the American Civil Liberties Union in 1920. Keller earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Radcliffe College in 1904, and she was the first deaf and blind person to do so, setting an example for others to follow. Keller and her teacher Anne Sullivan are an example of the power of compassion and determination, and their story is still taught to children in the United States today.

Her words to live by:Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.

Harriet Tubman
(1822 – 1913)

Her mark on history: The Underground Railroad and abolitionism

How life would be different without her: Tubman was born into slavery in Maryland, and after she escaped, she devoted her life to helping others escape slavery, too. In the 1850s, Tubman served as a “conductor” on the Underground Railroad. She also served as a Union spy during the Civil War. Tubman is celebrated as one of the most prominent figures in the United States’ abolitionist movement.

Her words to live by:Slavery is the next thing to hell.

Clara Barton
(1821 – 1912)

Her mark on history: The American Red Cross

How life would be different without her: Barton founded the American Red Cross in 1881, after serving as a nurse during the Civil War. Her work directly affected countless lives, and the Red Cross continues to help the wounded today. Aside from her work in establishing the aid organization, Barton also knew Susan B. Anthony and was active in the women’s suffrage movement.

Her words to live by:The surest test of discipline is its absence.”

Sandra Day O’Connor
(born 1930)

Her mark on history: The first woman appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court

How life would be different without her: Former President Ronald Reagan appointed O’Connor to the Supreme Court in 1981, and she served as an associate justice until her retirement in 2006. As a moderate conservative, O’Connor gained support from both sides of the aisle and served as an example for future justices. O’Connor cast the deciding vote in many notable Supreme Court cases, including 1992’s Planned Parenthood v. Casey, in which she defended women’s rights to choose. Though she is retired, O’Connor continues to be involved in politics — she recently spoke out about why President Obama should nominate a replacement for the late Justice Antonin Scalia.

Her words to live by:The power I exert on the court depends on the power of my arguments, not on my gender.

Elizabeth Cady Stanton
(1815 – 1902)

Her mark on history: The women’s suffrage movement

How life would be different without her: Stanton, a formally educated woman born in Johnstown, NY, was involved in the abolitionist and women’s suffrage movements. In 1848, she helped organize America’s first convention for women’s rights. She later worked with Susan B. Anthony to present a bill on women’s rights to the New York Legislature, and the pair’s efforts eventually led to the passage of the 19th amendment, which gave women the right to vote.

Her words to live by:The best protection any woman can have…is courage.

Harriet Beecher Stowe
(1811 – 1896)

Her mark on history: Abolitionist and author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin

How life would be different without her: Stowe was born into a prominent religious family in Connecticut, and her father was a Calvinist preacher. When Stowe’s family moved to Cincinnati, she joined a literary club, where she met her husband, an abolitionist. The pair supported the work of the Underground Railroad, and Stowe went on to write Uncle Tom’s Cabin, which described the horrible treatment of slaves in America. The book sold more than 300,000 copies the first year it was published and helped many Americans learn about the harsh realities of slavery.

Her words to live by:It’s a matter of taking the side of the weak against the strong, something the best people have always done.

Dorothea Dix
(1802 – 1887)

Her mark on history: Pioneering treatment for mental health

How life would be different without her: Dorothea Dix, a teacher in Boston, fought tirelessly to de-stigmatize mental illness. After teaching at a local prison and learning of the poor living conditions there, Dix traveled to other prisons in Massachusetts to observe the quality of life for the imprisoned and insane. She took her findings to Massachusetts’ legislature, which led to the creation of America’s first mental institutions. After the mental institutions were formed, Dix also served as the Superintendent of Army Nurses during the American Civil War. When the war was over, Dix continued writing about her experiences and fighting for better treatment of people struggling with mental illness.

Her words to live by: “In a world where there is so much to be done, I felt strongly impressed that there must be something for me to do.”

Billie Jean King
(born 1943)

Her mark on history: Champion of women’s sports: Former World No. 1 professional tennis player who won 39 Grand Slam titles

How life would be different without her: King was an incredible tennis player — she won six Wimbledon championships as well as four U.S. Open titles. But she’s also lauded as a key figure in the fight for equality in professional sports. During 1973’s “Battle of the Sexes” tennis match, a nationally televised media event, King beat Bobby Riggs (who was roughly 30 years older than her during the match), and her victory was hailed as a win for female athletes everywhere. That same year, King founded the Women’s Tennis Association. King has also spoken out against the sexism in the way many people discuss female athletes’ appearance, telling CNN in 2015 that commentators should “stop evaluating” their looks and instead focus on their achievements. In addition, she was one of the first openly gay female athletes.

Her words to live by:Champions keep playing until they get it right.

Lucretia Mott
(1793 – 1880)

Her mark on history: Pioneer of the women’s rights movement

How life would be different without her: Mott, a Quaker, was an abolitionist and women’s rights activist who fought for equal rights for all citizens. In 1833, she helped to form the Philadelphia Female Anti-Slavery Society and was an organizer of the 1848 Seneca Falls Convention, a landmark women’s rights gathering, where she served as the keynote speaker. During the convention, the attendees penned the Declaration of Sentiments, a list of rights they believed women deserved.

Her words to live by: “The world has never yet seen a truly great and virtuous nation, because in the degradation of woman, the very fountains of life are poisoned at their source.”

Maya Angelou
(1928 – 2014)

Her mark on history: American literature

How life would be different without her: Angelou authored seven autobiographical books, including I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, and will be forever beloved for her powerful poems. Born in Missouri, she was an active voice in the civil rights movement. She recited her poem “On the Pulse of Morning” at Bill Clinton’s presidential inauguration in 1993. In addition to gaining national recognition for her writing, Angelou made many people rethink their ideas about sex workers by writing about her own experience as a sex worker.

Her words to live by:Be a rainbow in somebody else’s cloud.”

(1788 – 1812)

Her mark on history: Member of the Lewis and Clark expedition

How life would be different without her: A Native American from the Shoshone tribe, Sacajawea was married to French fur trapper Toussaint Charbonneau when the couple joined the expedition ordered by Thomas Jefferson to explore the lands of the newly acquired Louisiana Purchase. Sacagawea’s language skills made her an invaluable resource for Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, the expedition’s leaders, on a trek that took them from St. Louis, MO, to the Pacific Ocean in 1804 to 1806. Sacajawea brought her newborn son, Jean-Baptiste Charbonneau, on the mission, too — he was born just two months before the group headed west. While Sacajawea ended up on the mission largelybecause of her husband, she proved to be essential to it in her own right, becoming an example for generations of women in the United States.

Madeleine Albright
(born 1937)

Her mark on history: The first female U.S. secretary of state

How life would be different without her: Born in Czechoslovakia, Albright and her parents moved to the United States when she was a child. Albright has been candid about her childhood experiences — in 2015, she tweeted, “My family fled Hitler and then communism. Becoming an American was the best thing that ever happened to me.” As a diplomat representing the U.S. government, she served as ambassador to the United Nations before Bill Clinton named her secretary of state in 1996. Albright paved the way for Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Clinton. She has never been afraid to speak her mind: She recently told CNN that the 2016 GOP primary race is “like children in a school yard calling each other names.”

Her words to live by: “There is a special place in hell for women who do not help other women.”

Sojourner Truth
(1797 – 1883)

Her mark on history: The U.S. abolitionism movement

How life would be different without her: Sojourner Truth escaped slavery in Ulster County, N.Y., in 1826, along with her infant daughter. Truth also made history when she won a legal battle against a white man to get her son back when he was sold into slavery in Alabama. She was an essential figure in the abolitionism movement, and she is widely recognized for her “Ain’t I a Woman?” speech, delivered in 1851 at the Ohio Women’s Rights Convention.

Her words to live by:
Truth is powerful, and it prevails.”

Ruth Bader Ginsburg
(born 1933)

Her mark on history: The U.S. Supreme Court

How life would be different without her: Ginsburg was the second female justice ever appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court (Sandra Day O’Connor was the first). Now, she serves along with two other female justices, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor. Before serving on the Supreme Court, Ginsburg fought for women’s rights as a lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union. Ginsburg continues to fight for equality as a Supreme Court justice today.

Her words to live by: “Now the perception is, yes, women are here to stay,” Ginsburg said of the Supreme Court during the 10th Circuit Bench & Bar Conference in 2012. “And when I’m sometimes asked, ‘When will there be enough?’ and I say, ‘when there are nine,’ people are shocked. But there’d been nine men, and nobody’s ever raised a question about that.”

Susan B. Anthony
(1820 – 1906)

How she made her mark on history: The women’s suffrage movement

How life would be different without her: A teacher in the New York state school system, Anthony fought for equal education for women and Black people in 19th-century America. She orchestrated the first women’s suffrage convention in Washington, D.C. in 1869, and three years later, was arrested and convicted for voting in Rochester, N.Y. She refused to pay her fine. In 1920, the United States passed the 19th Amendment, unofficially known as the Anthony Amendment, which gave women the right to vote.

Her words to live by: “
Independence is happiness.”

Gloria Steinem
(born 1934)

How she made her mark on history: The second-wave feminism movement

How life would be different without her:
Steinem is one of modern feminism’s most inspiring voices. She testified in Senate hearings about the Equal Rights Amendment in 1970, and has been vocal about a variety of issues that impact women, including reproductive rights, child abuse, and female genital mutilation. She grabbed national attention with her undercover exposé of working as a Playboy bunny, rose to prominence as a columnist for New Yorkmagazine, and cofounded the feminist magazine Ms.

Her words to live by:
Imagine we are linked, not ranked.”

Rosa Parks
(1913 – 2005)

How she made her mark on history: The Civil Rights movement

How life would be different without her: Parks helped spark a revolution when she refused to give up her seat to a white passenger on a city bus in Montgomery, AL, in 1955. She was arrested and eventually lost her job as a seamstress at a local department store. But her act of civil disobedience inspired a boycott of Montgomery’s buses that lasted 381 days and drew national attention. The following year, the Supreme Court declared segregation on buses to be unconstitutional — an important victory in the fight for racial equality in the United States.

Her words to live by:
“I believe we are here on the planet Earth to live, grow up, and do what we can to make this world a better place for all people to enjoy freedom,” Parks told Life magazine in 1988.

Jane Goodall
(born 1934)

Her mark on history: The world’s leading primatologist

How life would be different without her:
Born in London, Goodall has been fascinated with animals since she was child, and she wrote her doctoral thesis at Cambridge University about her research on the behavior of chimpanzees. She is now one of the world’s most knowledgeable experts on the species, which she has studied in Tanzania for more than 50 years. She now advocates on behalf of many endangered animals, and she’s spread awareness about a variety of animal species to people across the globe.

Her words to live by: “To achieve global peace, we must not only stop fighting each other, but also stop destroying the natural world.”

Lucy Stone
(1818 – 1893)

Her mark on history: Abolitionist and suffragist

How life would be different without her: Stone was one of the original suffragists, and an all-around badass. She worked with activists like Elizabeth Cady Stanton to establish the first National Women’s Rights Convention, and used her talent as an orator to advocate for women’s rights and ending slavery. She put herself through college by working part time, and was the first Massachusetts woman to earn a college degree (though she had to go to Ohio to do it).

She was no less principled in her personal life — she refused to marry her husband unless the marriage was guaranteed to be egalitarian, and she kept her own name after they wed.

Her words to live by:We ask only for justice and equal rights — the right to vote, the right to our own earnings, equality before the law.

Eleanor Roosevelt
(1884 – 1962)

Her mark on history: Activist and politician who changed the role of first lady

How life would be different without her: During her time as First Lady, she was a public advocate of civil rights, working to improve the state of minority rights and lobbying the federal government to end lynching. After her White House tenure, she pressured the United States to join the United Nations, eventually serving as the first chair of the U.N. Commission on Human Rights. She was also active domestically, serving as chair of JFK’s Presidential Commission on the Status of Women. When she died in 1962, The New York Times called her “one of the most esteemed women in the world.”

Her words to live by: I know that we will be the sufferers if we let great wrongs occur without exerting ourselves to correct them.”

Originally Posted HERE

HB Sig

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