Rebecca Zamon
Rebecca Zamon is the senior editor of lifestyle with HuffPost Canada, and can't really think of a better job than one that lets her read and write interesting stories on everything from food to health to relationships. Rebecca previously worked in magazines at Transcontinental Media and headed up the lifestyle department at Sun Media. Her Twitter bio (@RebZam) describes her as a "reader, writer, eater, Torontonian, fancy geek, summer cyclist," which pretty much sums up how she spends her time outside of work.
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Entries by Rebecca Zamon

Israel Has Outlawed Making The Elderly Stand In Public Lines

(0) Comments | Posted April 27, 2017 | 4:33 PM

When it comes to laws for the elderly, they're often about restrictions — not letting people drive or even preventing them from voting.

But in Israel, where people 80 and over are 5.5 per cent of the population, they've decided to buck the trend...

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These Style Trends For 2017 Weddings Will Complete Your Look

(0) Comments | Posted April 27, 2017 | 3:54 PM

If you're getting married in 2017, you've probably finished picking out the essentials — you know, the venue, the photographer, the dress. But it's the small details for your look that always seem to be held off until the last minute that can make all the difference.

There are so...

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The Effects Of Pregnancy Can Last For Years In A Woman's Brain: Study

(14) Comments | Posted April 26, 2017 | 3:45 PM

Most people have heard of "baby brain," but they might not be familiar with its distant, more scientific cousin — pregnant brain.

Yes, while heads may nod sympathetically for new mothers and fathers who forget words, or lunches, or buttons on shirts, some new information has been found to support...

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Quebec's Foresta Lumina Is A Magical Trail You Don't Want To Miss In 2017

(1) Comments | Posted April 25, 2017 | 1:51 PM

If your summer vacation plans are starting to take shape, we have one more suggestion to add to your list: Quebec's Parc de la Gorge de Coaticook, or more specifically, its spectacular Foresta Lumina.

For the past few summers, this gorgeous park in the Eastern Townships has been...

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Parents Who Watch Their Teens' TV Shows Feel Closer To Them: Study

(3) Comments | Posted April 25, 2017 | 11:16 AM

Teens and their parents can often feel like they're living on two totally different planets, speaking different languages and seeing two different worlds. One way to combat that? Start watching completely contrived worlds together, in the form of TV.

In a study released today from Netflix, the online TV site...

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Serena Williams Publicly Acknowledges Pregnancy With Letter To Baby

(1) Comments | Posted April 24, 2017 | 3:28 PM

In the first public acknowledgement of her pregnancy, Serena Williams posted an Instagram letter to her future baby on Monday that was equal parts vulnerable and inspiring.

Williams, 35, who had put up a Snapchat last week with the caption "20 weeks," only to take it down right...

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Retirement Home Wedding Makes Us Believe In Love All Over Again

(0) Comments | Posted April 24, 2017 | 11:57 AM

There's no cutoff date for falling in love, and two octogenarians in Mississippi just proved it once again.

Robert Holler, 84, and Doris Ladner, 89, tied the knot last weekend at the Woodland Village Nursing Center in Diamondhead, MS, reports WLOX.

The couple has been by each other's...

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Geena Davis Celebrates 'League Of Their Own' 25th Anniversary With Challenge To Hollywood

(2) Comments | Posted April 24, 2017 | 11:12 AM

Prepare yourself to feel old: it's been 25 years since "A League of Their Own" was first in theatres.

That's right — you've been saying this for an entire quarter-century:

And star Geena Davis, 61, can hardly believe it either.

"I went through this last year because it was the 25th anniversary of 'Thelma and Louise,' and it was, ‘no, it can’t be!’," she tells the Huffington Post Canada over the phone. "At the time I never thought about how movies last a long time. Now movies last forever, and so I have the same number of girls and young women recognize me from that movie and tell me they played sports because of that movie as I did when it first came out."

Davis admits she never played sports herself growing up because her ever-growing limbs (she was 6'0" by the time she was 18) made her feel gangly and uncoordinated, but she more than made up for it once she hit adulthood. Besides learning how to play baseball for "League," she took up archery at age 41, at one point becoming the 13th best archer in the U.S. and coming 24th out of 300 women trying out for the Olympics in 1999.

geena davis and archery
Geena Davis takes aim at a target as she tries out for a spot on the U.S. Olympic archery team, August 21, 1999.

The Oscar winner, whose influence has now spanned a couple of generations in roles from "Beetlejuice" to "Grey's Anatomy," has made an equally strong name for herself in trying to level the playing field (sorry, sorry) for women in Hollywood with the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media.

The organization works to challenge gender stereotypes and biases in entertainment and the media by pushing for stronger female characters and highlighting imbalances wherever they're found, especially as they pertain to children 11 and under. And while Davis' role in "League" may have helped girls get into more sports, she's been impressed to see how its influence spread in a number of ways.

"There’s the [girl power] aspect of it, there’s being a teammate and camaraderie and underdogs and all that," she says. "But what’s wonderful too is that boys love the movie too. Quite a number of moms tell me, ‘That’s my son’s favourite movie.’"

But she thinks that's also all the more reason why Hollywood needs to get its act together and diversify what it's producing.

"We’ve got to show boys and girls that women do equally interesting and important things, and are, by the way, half the population."

"Very few films are actually gender balanced, which is important to realize, and that’s why I’m doing all this," she explains. "We’ve got to show boys and girls that women do equally interesting and important things, and are, by the way, half the population."

Answering a question in Forbes on how she thinks creators can actively make a difference, Davis noted, "I say, whatever you are already going to make, go through and change the names of some of the characters to female and voila! You have probably fixed your gender imbalance and created some characters who likely challenge gender stereotypes because they were written for male characters."

As for why so many movies and shows are geared towards men, she believes it's a tired, outdated way of thinking that's due for a change.

"I think it’s unconscious bias, but Hollywood for so long lived under this assumption which turns out to be wrong that, ‘Oh we have to cater to men and especially teenage boys as the audience, and God forbid we show them anything they don’t really identify with,’" she explains. "But the fact is, they’re no longer the biggest audience. Really, women and girls are the biggest audiences.

"In fact, my institute of research just found that in 2014/15/16, movies starring a female character made more money at the box office, so it’s time to get over that notion. And come on! 'Star Wars' came out with a female lead, get with the program here."

cate blanchett oscars 2014
Cate Blanchett speaks on stage after she won best actress for her work in 'Blue Jasmine" at the 86th Academy Awards in Hollywood, California March 2, 2014.

During her 2014 Oscar acceptance speech for "Blue Jasmine," a film decidedly centred around a woman's personal life, Cate Blanchett echoed the same feelings. Speaking to the audience, she thanked them for proving wrong "those in the industry who are still foolishly clinging to the idea that female films with women at the centre are niche experiences. They are not. Audiences want to see them, and in fact they earn money. The world is round, people!”

As for Davis, it's a sentiment that's informed every role she's played right from the beginning.

"I was not attracted to [the femme fatale] kinds of parts because I’d feel like, ‘Well, she doesn’t get to do anything. And I want to play characters that do stuff.’ So I ended up in unusual movies like 'Beetlejuice' and 'Earth Girls Are Easy' just because I was really looking for acting challenges.

"It wasn’t until after the one-two punch of 'Thelma and Louise' and 'League of Their Own' that I said, ‘Wow, I am really going to make choices thinking about what women in the audience are going to think about my character.’ Not to play role models, but to show women in charge of their own fate. That I would rather play baseball than be the girlfriend of the man playing baseball, and that’s the operating principle that’s pushed me ever since."

"[I realized] I would rather play baseball than be the girlfriend of the man playing baseball, and that’s the operating principle that’s pushed me ever since."

Davis hasn't, incidentally, put those baseball skills that inspired so many girls to waste. Each year at the Bentonville Film Festival (BFF), an event spotlighting women and diverse voices in entertainment which she co-founded in 2015, an annual "League of Their Own" reunion softball game is held. In addition to the Peaches (Rosie O'Donnell has attended the past two years), other celebrities and locals join in. The festival runs from May 2 to May 7, 2017.

"And so this year we’re making a really big deal out of it, because of the anniversary of course, and it should be great fun," she says with excitement.

And as for Madonna's attendance?

"She hasn’t [come yet] — we have our fingers crossed for this...

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Ikea Wants To Do For Restaurants What It's Done For Furniture

(9) Comments | Posted April 21, 2017 | 12:31 PM

You may soon be able to get your hands on Ikea's freshly cooked food without contending with the maze of its stores.

It's no secret that the highlight of any visit to the furniture behemoth is a stop at the restaurant (at the very least, it's a place to cool...

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Three Canadians Named To Time's Most Influential List For 2017

(4) Comments | Posted April 20, 2017 | 4:30 PM

We'll admit it — when an American news outlet puts out a list of important people in the world, we immediately start looking for the Canadians who are on it.

Call it a self-esteem issue, call it Canadian pride, but whatever it is, it never fails to send a shiver...

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Kim Kardashian Calls The Flu An 'Amazing Diet,' Twitter Reacts Accordingly

(2) Comments | Posted April 20, 2017 | 1:09 PM

Kim Kardashian is many things — a reality star, a mom, a wife, a sister — but despite her endorsement of a multitude of health-oriented products, she is most definitely not a doctor.

This point was driven home once again in a now-deleted tweet from April 19, 2017, in which...

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These Books About Moms And Their Kids Are Perfect Mother's Day Gifts

(3) Comments | Posted April 19, 2017 | 5:40 PM

There's no end to the books that are about mothers and their kids in the children's aisles of bookstores, but once you get to grown-up novels, the lines get blurred.

There's no section for "great books about being a parent" or "engrossing novels that delve into the relationship between...

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Moncton, N.B.'s Julie McGivery Runs Boston Marathon At 8 Months Pregnant

(0) Comments | Posted April 19, 2017 | 3:46 PM

By the time many women have reached the 32-week point of pregnancy, they feel ready to stop work, lie down and not get up until that baby is ready for the world.

Julie McGivery, of Moncton, N.B., on the other hand, decided she would be running the Boston Marathon at...

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Smart New Bra For Small Breasts Does Away With Boob Gap Problem

(3) Comments | Posted April 19, 2017 | 11:12 AM

If you have small breasts, you're well aware of your options when it comes to bras: buy a small-sized bra and deal with the unfortunate "boob gaps" that can result or suck up your pride and head into the training bra section.

But one Kickstarter wants to change all that,...

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Your Brain Could Become Increasingly Less Creative After Age 25

(5) Comments | Posted April 18, 2017 | 12:52 PM

If you want to surprise even yourself with your decision on a subject, it's best to be under the age of 26.

New research from PLOS Computational Biology demonstrates that the brain's ability to make random choices peaks around age 25, and deteriorates from there.

In a study...

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9 Questions Every Parent Has Had About 'Paw Patrol'

(0) Comments | Posted April 18, 2017 | 10:29 AM

If you have a child under the age of five, it's entirely possible that at some point today you whispered to yourself these three little words:

"Marshall! Rubble! Chase!"

That is, before you caught yourself and stopped short of running through the entire "Paw Patrol" gang. Because you have...

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Tillie Medland's Nephew Grabs Her Boobs, And Every Mom Understands

(0) Comments | Posted April 17, 2017 | 3:03 PM

It's an undeniable, if uncomfortable fact: kids love reaching down shirts and grabbing boobs.

For aunt Tillie Medland, a 20-year-old model based in Toronto, this reality was made clear by her nephew Jetson in a video she published on Instagram. As she holds the toddler, he reaches down into her...

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Quebec Daycare Recommendations Include 'War Games' For Boys

(4) Comments | Posted April 13, 2017 | 3:29 PM

Let boys be boys?

A report released this week by community and daycare workers in the Estrie region of Quebec has garnered some national interest for its focus on differentiating between how girls and boys behave — and specifically, for encouraging boys to play "war" and "battle" games.

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Malala Yousafzai Schools Canadian Parliament On Girls' Education

(5) Comments | Posted April 12, 2017 | 5:30 PM

When Malala Yousafzai became an honorary Canadian citizen this week, she wasted no time in making sure her most important message got through to people across the country.

"I want to tell the children of Canada that when I was little, I used to wait to be an...

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This Blob Is An Edible Water Bottle, And It Could Change Everything

(5) Comments | Posted April 12, 2017 | 12:45 PM

It will come as no surprise to anyone with the slightest interest in the environment that water bottles are at the top of the hit list for "worst products to buy," thanks to their one-time purpose and amount of waste generated.

But one London-based company could be changing the...

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