Tuesday, June 26, 2012

These Two Food Components Can Destroy Your Diet

Imagine this: you lose 20 pounds. You are feeling good going to your doctor for a wellness checkup. How would you feel if she were to tell you that you are not healthy. "Mr. Jones," she advises, "your triglycerides and LDL cholesterol are too high, and your HDL cholesterol is too low. You need to go on a statin drug, because you could have a heart attack in five years."
Unfortunately, weight loss is not as easy as merely cutting calories and exercising.
This happened to me. I was at an ideal size and was exercising and eating lower calories, but was unhealthy. I didn't want to get on a statin drug because I knew I would have to take it for the rest of my life, so I began to eliminate the culprits that were raising my triglycerides and cholesterol.
Fortunately, my cardiologist made it simple for me. "If you don't want to be on medication, I'll give you three months to get it under control. You need to cut down on the sugars and the saturated fat," he instructed.
Here are some foods that are loaded with saturated fat: Steak, chicken, pork, cookies, butter, and milk. This is only a small set of examples.
Some foods that are loaded with sugar include white bread, oven pastries, most boxed breakfasts, any cereal that has less than 4 grams of fiber per serving (because these cereals tend to have a lower amount of whole grains and a higher amount of enriched flour), soda pop, and juice.
Here is a good strategy that still allows you to have the foods you love and give an alternative place to get your protein and satisfy your sweet tooth. Try cutting down on the amount of meat that you eat each week. Try to cut steak consumption to once a month, chicken once a week, and pork once a week. Also, read your food labels and make sure you are getting and eating foods very low in saturated fat and cholesterol.
Cut out the white bread and the pastries. Eat sweets only once or twice a week. Cut down the amounts of sweets each time you eat them. Share a dessert with a friend. You eat desserts for taste, right? Also, eat only 100% whole grains for bread items.
Protein alternatives include soy products, such as soy milk, soy chicken lettuce patties and beef patties, and tofu. Also, beans have a lot of protein. Protein powders are also an excellent source of protein. Consider eating egg whites.
Remember that your body was not made to consume large amounts of saturated fat or sugar. Don't try to completely cut these out of your diet, because it is very difficult to do. Instead, cut down. I lost eight pounds over the course of four weeks, and my lipids are at their proper levels. Are you up to the challenge? If so, talk to your doctor and get started with your weight loss program.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Ten Reasons You Can't Lose Weight

You may be among many who have attempted to lose weight many times yet remain unsuccessful. You might be thinking, "If only I had the secret!" If you are frustrated, take a look at why weight loss comes difficult. Here are ten pitfalls that slow down or halt the process:
1. Fat Overload. We need protein, but often the sources of our protein are also sources of fat. Fat has nine calories per gram. It is wise to choose foods with unsaturated fat and eat cleaner proteins, such as soy products and whey protein powders.
2. Sugar Overload. By eating candy, cookies, and breakfast pastries, and drinking juice, we tend to consume a lot of empty calories, which digest very quickly in our bodies. The excess gets stored as fat. It is better to satisfy our sweet tooth cravings with fruit.
3. Water Deficit. Water is a miracle nutrient. It can help us to lose weight. Many times we feel hunger pangs and think we are hungry, but our bodies are really telling us that we are thirsty. Water satisfies our cravings and makes us feel fuller.
4. Soda Pop Overload. Many people try to quench their thirst with soda pop. This contributes to the many empty calories that we consume each day. And why put all those chemicals in your body anyway? Switch to water.
5. Alcohol Overload. Alcohol has 7 calories per gram. One 12 oz. bottle of beer has 180 calories. A 24 ounce beer has 360 calories. Your body will break down alcohol calories before it breaks down carbs, fat, or protein. Drinking only one serving a day and counting those as calories is very important.
6. Condiment Overload. It is really important to count condiments in your calorie counting. How much mayonnaise or catchup are you putting on your chicken sandwich? Yes, and pickles have calories, too.
7. Meal Deficit. It is a whole lot more fun to eat six times a day then three times a day. Eating more often raises the metabolism and improves digestion, because we consume less food at a time and are able to eat more in 24 hours.
8. Skipping breakfast. Never skip breakfast. You may be eating less food, but you are also slowing down your metabolism. Who wants to drag all day?
9. Burning too few calories. It is difficult to lose weight by only dieting. Exercise is essential. So get on those running shoes and go for a thirty-minute walk every day. Weight training can also really accelerate your weight loss efforts.
10. Lack of goal setting. Weight loss takes time. One should lose only 2 pounds per week at most. It is therefore important to set short-term and long-term goals so that you can celebrate as you reach milestones and continue this lifelong journey.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

6 Tips to Beginning a Healthy Lifestyle

Adopting a healthy lifestyle sometimes requires a support system. Working out can be much more fun when you're accompanied by someone else. And if you lack self-motivation, a solo workout and healthy eating can be challenging. If you're ready to lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle, you'll need to adopt some healthy habits to help you reach your goals. Here are six tips to help you adopt a healthy fitness and lifestyle regimen.
1. Plan your workout schedule. Plan out your weekly schedule just as you would with work. Make yourself and your health a priority. Schedule in workout sessions on a daily basis just as you would a meeting for work. Commit to going to your workouts.
2. Get a workout buddy. Family and/or friends are a great place to start. Having a workout buddy can help motivate you, push you and guide you during workouts. In addition, working out with someone else helps keep you accountable. You're more likely to stay on track when you've got someone else counting on you for a workout.
3. Find a class that inspires you. What type of exercise will get you to the gym? What's most important in the beginning and throughout your healthy lifestyle is to participate in workouts and activities that inspire you to move. Do you love cardio dance classes, body sculpting class or boot camp at your local gym? Determine which activity you would like to do most and gravitate to that activity. In addition, classes are a great way to start working out. Classes provide an instructor that will help motivate you and keep your workouts safe to avoid injury.
4. Get involved in an activity or club. Have you ever thought of getting involved in an activity such as tennis, swimming, golf, softball or a running club? Organized sports activities and clubs provide a great environment for working out with like minded people. In addition, sports groups and clubs are the perfect way to keep you interested, involved and on a training schedule.
5. Set short and long term goals. First and foremost, it's important to be realistic with your goals. Whether your goals are to lose weight, improve endurance, excel at a sport or simply to become more active, goals can be a great way to keep yourself on track. Make sure to track your progress as well. Whether you journal your steps toward your goals or create a calendar or use an app on your phone, keep a record of the steps you are taking to reach your goals and by what date you would like to reach your goals. Each person is different and each person's goals should be specific to you and your fitness level and lifestyle.
6. Adopt healthy eating habits. Not only are your workouts important but so is healthy eating. If you want to improve your fitness level, lose weight and become healthier, you'll need to fuel your body properly. Make sure to hydrate, eat whole fresh foods and try to eliminate processed foods from your diet. Plan your weekly meals, journal your food daily and remember to reward yourself at the end of each week for all of your hard work. Remember, it's about lifestyle - not deprivation.
A healthy lifestyle doesn't happen overnight. But with a consistent workout routine, healthy eating and healthy habits, you're one step closer to your goal. Sit down and devise a workout schedule and a healthy eating schedule. Being prepared can help you stay on track and ensure you stick to your new healthy regimen.
Margot Rutigliano is a freelance writer as well as the owner of Vita Vie Retreat. She has been a fitness trainer, wellness coach and healthy living adviser since 1999. Vita Vie Retreat is a fitness camp offering healthy lifestyle tran

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Proven Home Workouts That You Can Use To Lose Weight

During winter or hot summer periods and also at times when you simply do not like the idea of going outside your home to exercise, you can actually make use of effective home workouts to lose weight and stay fit.
Some of these home workouts might require the use of home gym equipments while others do not require the use of any equipment. The two most important things that you need to carry out most of these home workouts are the right clothes and a strong will power.
You can either make use of any of the following home workout options or you can combine as many of these workouts as it suits your personal needs and goals:
1 - Calisthenics and circuit training
With circuit training you do not need to use equipments and you get to work on your entire body. This kind of exercise is an intensive interval training which really helps you to lose weight and stay fit.
2 - Yoga workouts
You can use various yoga sequences and workouts to improve your overall body health and general fitness level. However, you must first get some lessons on how to make use of proper yoga forms and postures to enable you carry out yoga routines by yourself at home.
One of the best forms of yoga routines to achieve fitness and weight loss at home is the Ashtanga yoga which is a full body workout.
3 - Weight training
You can do most of your weight training workouts with a set of adjustable dumbbells.
4 - Running and jogging
All you need for good jogging are good sport clothes and a pair of good running shoes. You can take out time to jog around your neighbourhood everyday for about 40 minutes; you just have to stay motivated to be persistent and continue till you get your desired results.
5 - Home exercise machines
If you can afford them you can buy some cardio machines that you can use to work out at home and there are four main types of home machines that you can use to exercise:
Cross Trainers
These machines provide you with very good full body workouts that are low impact; you can easily control the speed and resistance of your exercises.
Rowing Machines
These types of machines are not as popular as they used to be; they make you push with your legs and pull with your upper body so as to provide you with whole body workouts.
Exercise bikes
These machines focus mainly on your lower body and legs.
Treadmills can be a bit expensive and you might not be able to control the speed at which you run thus making them slightly less safe than other machines.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Get Rid Of Those Pesky Extra Pounds

Losing weight isn't always easy especially for those suffering from obesity. But that definitely doesn't mean that you should give up. Most people adopt various methods in order to lose their weight rapidly and in their pursuit of losing it fast, they end up gaining more and more. Some are so much desperate that they start utilizing silly techniques or tips, but they are merely a waste of time for them and in the end they just loose hope. Instead of relying on the idea and belief that they can lose a significant amount of weight in a month or fifteen days, they should follow some basic and effective strategies or tips to lose it in a healthy manner that takes time but is always fruitful in the long run.
There are countless techniques and methods that a person can adopt for losing weight or shedding some extra pounds the faster and healthier way. Some of these efficient techniques are detailed below:
One of the most effective ways to lose weight fast is to perform intense cardio exercises daily. Although these strong cardio exercises are advantageous for the body and its better functioning yet too much exercise without an interval for relaxation can be detrimental for the body too.
So, by adding a little twist to the normal cardio routine, you can bring amazingly huge changes towardr accomplishing your objective of losing weight rapidly. This change in your regular hourly exercise is a ten to fifteen minute break. This break time is quite crucial because it helps elevate your metabolic rate faster and for a longer duration as compared to a tiring and continuous cardio workout.
Taking a small break for rest is always healthy for your body and mind and can help you lose incremental weight in the long run. Applying this strategy in your daily intense workout routine can be quite beneficial for you in the future. One of the most effective cardio exercises include walking, running or cycling. Participating in any of these activities will cause huge positive changes towards your health and will definitely help your bodylose weight quickly.
Applying stress on the liver for performing the function of the kidneys is not a good idea at all. Therefore, it's best that you drink lots and lots of water daily for the better functioning of your kidneys. If your kidneys are unable to perform efficiently due to slackness in drinking water then this can be a huge problem for your health in the long run. Drinking at least six or eight glasses of water daily is essential for your health and it also aids towards elevating the metabolic rate of your body. By increasing the metabolic rate of your body, you enable your body to break up and use the stored fats of the body. This helps a lot in shedding extra pounds.
Apart from the regular and timely intake of fresh water, your nutrition also plays a deciding role towards weight gain. The more you incline towards fast foods and unhealthy nutrition, the more is the likelihood of you damaging your health and gaining unnecessary weight. So, it's best that you avoid greasy and artificially sweetened foods and tend towards healthy foods which include fresh salads, vegetables and above all fresh and juicy fruits. These healthy food items help a lot towards making your digestive system function in a much better way. On the other hand, fast food items which include burgers, fried chips or pizza items lead toward the intake of dangerous amount of calories and in the end you only drag yourself in a direction that makes your liver fatty and lazy towards performing its basic function. Moreover you should try to develop the habit of drinking more and more green tea and eat more and more fibers and proteins. Moreover, skipping breakfast isn't a good idea at all and will only cause health problems. Your body automatically burns more calories in the morning than other times of the day. Therefore, you should eat a healthy breakfast without worries.