Stomach HairballOur stomach is snuggling up to this stomach-shaped hairball to celebrate Hairball Awareness Day today. The National Museum of Health and Medicine has many many wonderful specimens, including this incredible hairball, technically called a bezoarCompulsive hair eating can sometimes lead to the entire stomach filling up with hard-to-digest tangles of hair, which must be surgically removed or dissolved with enzymes to clear the hairball. This particular hairball was removed from a 12-year-old girl who had been eating her own hair since she was 6. Wow!
Reproductive System Plush Toys - Female Toy Figures - Sex Ed ModelsBirth is an incredible process directed by hormones and carried out by your organs. Typically, childbirth is kicked off by stress -- at the end of gestation, baby is running out of room and wants to get out. Corticotropin-releasing hormones and cortisol from baby's adrenal glands send an evacuation notice to mom's body: "GET ME OUTTA HERE!" The cortisol then pumps up estriol, a type of estrogen present during pregnancy. Estriol slows down progesterone made by placenta and helps co-ordinate uterine contractions. As estrogen starts contractions, the uterus makes prostaglandins, which also force progesterone levels down. Prostaglandins also make you poop and, along with the hormone relaxin (yes, this is a real, actual hormone name) from the ovaries, get the cervix to soften and dilate to let baby through to the vaginal canal. And that's just the beginning!

Know anyone who kneeds this knee pillow? New adorable knee design is up in the Threadless shop! Make a fab knee tank top for your post-op workout, or give your orthopedic surgeon a gift he or she won't soon forget. Also available as a shirt, hoodie, phone case, mug, and knee tote bag. Go ahead, be kneed-y. We've got all your knee needs covered.

BoneThugsIt's the kind of question that our mothers harass us with. When we voice our answer, doctors stare at us disapprovingly. This is also the reason we avoid dietitians, or outright lie to nurses and grandmothers. When you're old, you won't want to move much anyway, right? What am I talking about? Calcium! It's National Osteoporosis Day, so in the spirit I calculated yesterday's calcium intake: Almost Zero (you know, if you count a piece of cake or 2 miscellaneous eggs). As much as I'd like to ignore this and pretend I get plenty of calcium, I don't want to have a hunchback at 60 years old. My great aunt is 90 and still travels the world! Talk about inspiring. So how do you get more calcium? And not just in your diet - how do you make sure it gets into your bones and stays there, after you're old and prone to falling from natural declines in your sense of balance? I'll give you a hint: dairy doesn't make your bones any less frail. So what are good sources of calcium, then? Click the link, or read on: leafy greens (especially kale), nuts (almonds!), seeds, soy, and white beans. See Whole Food's list for more ideas. Exercise is also great for strengthening bones, but it needs to be weight-bearing, like these workout ideas (floating in the pool doesn't count). Try yoga, running, or dancing! Do you have any favorite workouts or calcium-rich recipes?