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Could different labeling on nutritional menu be key to weight loss? – WKMG News 6 & ClickOrlando

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 10:45 am

There are plenty of people who pick up a food product at the store and immediately turn the container around to see what the nutritional label looks like. Per serving, how many calories does it have? What about carbohydrates and fiber? What kind of numbers do the fats have?

Its all relative, depending on what kind of food plan you might be on, or if youre trying to cater to a specific type of workout routine.

One study recently found that instead of just listing the details that we see now, we should also be able to see the physical activity calorie equivalent, or the PACE.

PACE labels show consumers how many calories are in a food item, but they also list what kind of and how long an exercise someone would need to engage in to burn that food off.

For example, a figure provided by a study in the United States Library of Medicine shows that after eating a regular burger, one would need to walk 2.6 miles to burn off said burger.

[Click here to see an example of a PACE label.]

The values on PACE labels were pulled from an activity table for an average 160-pound adult with a guesstimated walking pace of 30 minutes per mile.

In the study, a few things worth mentioning about those who participated. The people were:

The participants were randomly assigned to one of four generic fast-food menus: No label; calories only; calories and minutes; or calories and miles necessary to walk to burn off the calories.

The results were, those who ordered from:

[Read the full study by clicking here.]

During the study, participants said PACE labeling would not only influence their food choices, but the likelihood of them engaging in physical activity.

In conclusion, researchers found that PACE labels could certainly be helpful in reducing the number of calories ordered in meals, as well as adding the benefit of encouraging exercise.

Do you have more opinions on PACE labels? Wed love to hear them in the comment section below.

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Could different labeling on nutritional menu be key to weight loss? - WKMG News 6 & ClickOrlando

Winter supplements curb weight loss in geldings [Ask the Horse Doctor] – Reading Eagle

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 10:45 am

Dear Dr. Vittoria: I have always had my horses on pasture year-round. They typically do well, but this year one of my older geldings seems thinner. Winter weather hasnt even gotten bad. I supplement with hay and grain starting in the fall. I am concerned that I need to do something differently. Skinny Minny

Dear Skinny Minny: It is good that you noticed it now and not in February. Its easiest to get weight back on your gelding before he loses too much. Some horses change from being easy keepers to harder ones as they age.

Some horses develop different nutritional requirements as they age. If you arent giving him a vitamin and mineral balancer during the spring/summer, you should be. This geographical area is deficient in selenium and he cant get all of his vitamins from pasture alone. Balancers are available that dont add a lot of calories, so they work well for easy keepers who seem to exist on grass/hay alone. You will want to look into this for next summer.

As for the winter supplementation, you mentioned grain but not what type. Not all grains are created equal. You may be tempted by the inexpensive sweet feeds that you may have used in the past, but as horses get older, they may need a senior feed. Senior feeds work well for older horses since they are easily digested. The feeds are researched by nutritional vets who specialize in studying which feeds can make our older horses do better during the winter.

You could also add a straight fat supplement to the grain you already have, if he isnt quite a senior horse. This increases the calories in the feed and makes it easier for him to gain weight. I know that when we humans eat potato chips or French fries, we gain weight fast!

Offering more hay during the winter also helps. If you find that they are cleaning up all the hay, you may want to add an additional flake or two per horse. Not all hays are nutritionally the same. Grass hay is the least nutritious for calories, timothy is right in the middle and alfalfa is the hot potato of calories. Some people feed a blend of these in the wintertime to help increase caloric intake.

Keep in mind that there are a few medical things that can cause weight loss. Your vet can check him for Cushing's disease. Also, they can check his teeth and float (file) them to ensure he is getting the most bang for his buck with every mouthful of hay. Have the manure checked for worms, too. I have had some people say they looked at the poop themselves and didnt see any worms. My response is usually to explain the difference between intestinal worms (who live in the intestines), and earthworms (who live in the earth). You will not see worms in the manure until he has a severe infection.

Christina Vittoria, D.V.M., practices at Willow Creek Equine Veterinary Services. Comments are for educational purposes; consult a veterinarian before taking action. Send questions to country@readingeagle.com.

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Winter supplements curb weight loss in geldings [Ask the Horse Doctor] - Reading Eagle

What is brown fat and can it help you lose weight? – Firstpost

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 10:45 am

Fat could mean two things - dietary fat or body fat. By now we knew that there are different types of dietary fats - some good and some bad. But heres something that might be new - there are also different types of fat cells in the body - white, brown and beige. Brown fat has enjoyed attention in the fitness world ever since a series of studies published in 2009 discussed its energy and fat burning capabilities when the body is exposed to cold temperatures.

Representational image. Image by TeroVesalainen from Pixabay

Also called brown adipose tissue, it is found deep in the torso and neck area and is activated in cold conditions. Once activated, it burns ordinary white fat and glucose to warm up the body.

Studies in mice have shown that brown fats energy-burning capabilities are high considering it is present in small quantities in the body. Current research is focussed on whether these fat-burning capabilities can be harnessed and assist in weight loss programs. So it appears that the enthusiasm surrounding brown fat is a bit premature.

For starters, brown fat has extremely low energy expenditure unless it is stimulated (meaning when its not terribly cold) and human brown fat has lower energy-burning capabilities when compared to a mouses brown adipose tissue. While the body can be trained to produce more brown fat by being exposed to cold temperatures for several hours a day, no study states that this could lead to weight loss. Further, exercising in the cold does not seem to enhance weight-loss programs.

It has been suggested that exercise increases the activity of brown fat but the evidence of this is unclear. Research claims that exercise causes other fat to act more brown-like, which means that it burns energy to increase metabolism when exposed to the cold. Also, paradoxically, exercise studies have shown that the fat-burning capabilities of brown adipose tissue are actually reduced on exercising. This might be because its primary purpose is to keep us warm and healthy, and not to make us lose excess weight.

While all this information might seem confusing at this point, its a part of the process of reaching a conclusive finding. All this suggests is that further research needs to be done on brown fat to make sense of the contradictions.

A study published inNaturein August 2019 shed light on how brown fat helped with metabolism. The men in the study who naturally had higher levels of brown fat activity had reduced levels of BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids) in their blood. While BCAAs carry out vital functions in the body, higher amounts have been linked with obesity and diabetes. Further investigations in mice showed that higher levels of BCAAs did, in fact, progress to obesity and signs of diabetes.

Further, an NIH (National Institutes of Health) study published earlier this week showed that a drug that stimulated brown fat activity had favourable metabolic effects in healthy women. The participants were on the drug for four weeks which doubled the amount of brown fat while their body mass remained the same. They were found to have increased resting energy expenditure, higher levels of bile acid which digests fat, higher levels of HDL (which is known as good cholesterol) and better regulation of blood glucose.

This study only consisted of 14 participants. While there may have been favourable metabolic changes, the participants also experienced increased heart rates and blood pressure which normalized after the drug was stopped. Further, higher doses of the drug (called mirabegron and otherwise used for bladder issues) have been linked with cardiovascular disease.

More research needs to be done on how and if brown fat needs to be harnessed. Until then, the usual adages apply: exercise regularly and follow a healthy diet.

Read our tips onHow to lose weightfor more information.

Health articles in Firstpost are written by myUpchar.com, Indias first and biggest resource for verified medical information. At myUpchar, researchers and journalists work with doctors to bring you information on all things health.

Updated Date: Jan 23, 2020 18:19:31 IST

Tags :Body Fat,Brown Fat,Exercise For Weight Loss,How To Lose Weight,Metabolism,NewsTracker,Weight Loss

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What is brown fat and can it help you lose weight? - Firstpost

8 High Protein Bowls You Should Make This Week For Weight Loss – SheFinds

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 10:45 am

When youre trying to lose weight, one of the easiest ways to lose stamina with your routine is being bored with your meals. It is very easy to get into a rut with your food creativity when your main focus is the nutrients in your meal, rather than the flavors youre eating.

This week, you should try out new protein bowl ideas. Protein bowls are a great lunch or dinner option for weight loss because your body will benefit from the protein, plus there are many ways to make this kind of meal delicious and fun. You could easily have a protein bowl for both lunch and dinner each day while keeping each meal unique and different so you dont get bored.

Here are eight recipes youll want to try ASAP.

Black Bean Burrito Bowl

Made with black beans, cilantro and optional avocado, this burrito bowl is as flavorful as it is healthy. Plus, it only takes 15 minutes to cook! The recipe is easy to follow and offers options for different levels of cooking experience.

Recipe: Simple Recipes

Nourishing Quinoa Bowl

Quinoa is the ultimate grain for high-protein diets, and this quinoa bowl is one of the best ways to prepare it. The recipe also calls for other protein-rich ingredients, like chickpeas, hummus, kale and broccoli, so it is one of the healthiest meals you can make.

Recipe: Simply Quinoa

Farro Spinach Salad Bowl

This quick and easy recipe results in a delicious meal youll probably want to eat for both lunch and dinner. It uses just five ingredients and takes a few minutes to prepare.

Recipe: Self

Warm Swiss Chard Bowl

If youre a fan of leafy greens, this warm protein bowl is for you. It uses plenty of nutrient-dense ingredients, like farro, Swiss chard and eggs, so youll feel energized after eating it.

Recipe: Self

Brown Rice Avocado Bowl

The epitome of the easy-to-make, healthy meal, this protein bowl is made with all of our faves: brown rice, avocado, kale and an egg. Plus, it calls for great seasoning ingredients like lemon zest, paprika and fresh tarragon, so you know this one is super flavorful.

Recipe: Self

Chicken And Shaved Zucchini Bowl

This protein bowl takes a bit longer than the others to make, but it is definitely worth the effort. It uses chicken as its main source of protein, elevated by veggies like bell pepper and zucchini and set over a base of brown rice.

Recipe: Self

Salmon And Quinoa Bowl

What could be better for you than a protein bowl with both salmon AND quinoa? With 22 grams of protein in a single serving, this delicious dish is going to become one of your favorite go-to meals.

Recipe: Cooking Light

Shutterstock

Blackened Chicken Avocado Power Bowl

This recipe is one of our favorites because it has you blacken the chicken when you prepare it, which gives the dish an extra boost of flavor. Plus, it includes avocado, chickpeas and broccoli, so you know its great for your health.

Recipe: The Recipe Critic

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8 High Protein Bowls You Should Make This Week For Weight Loss - SheFinds

Weight loss story: This guy lost 24 kilos in just 6 months by doing cardio! Here’s how he did it – Times of India

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 10:45 am

When you are battling excess kilos, it is your own lethargy and the difficulty in performing everyday tasks with ease that make your life really difficult. When 34-year-old Ramniveth G realised that it was getting really difficult to even do the smallest chores, he decided to change his lifestyle for good. Read on to know his inspiring weight loss journey. Name: Ramniveth GOccupation: Electrical engineerAge: 34 years

Height: 5 feet 7 inches

City: ChennaiHighest weight recorded: 99.6 kilos

Weight lost: 24 kilos

Duration it took me to lose weight: 6 months

The turning point: I was trying my best to maintain my weight during my student days but once I began working, my health went for a toss. Thanks to the undefined work-life balance and unhealthy lifestyle, my weight went from 78 kilos to a whopping 99.6 kilos.

Ultimately, my weight touched a massive 100 kilos and I became a borderline diabetic. That is when I realised that enough is enough and I desperately needed to lose weight to get back in shape.

My breakfast: I eat two boiled eggs with a handful of almonds/walnuts and raisins. Sometimes, I also have an avocado smoothie with brown sugar. My lunch: I eat a regular meal with a moderate quantity of rice and more vegetables.

My dinner: Two chapatis or a portion of tropical fruits or a bowl of soup sometimes.

Pre-workout meal: A handful of walnuts and raisins along with a cup of green tea.

Post-workout meal: A cup of low-fat yoghurt

My workout: I started doing cardio for 20 minutes at home. Gradually, I also began going to the gym and used to run on the treadmill for 30 minutes.Low-calorie recipes I swear by: I consume chicken or fish once in a week and completely avoid red meat. I have also stopped eating junk food for once and for all, swapped soft drinks with green tea, included more salads and increased water intake. I also made it a point to only eat homemade food.

Fitness secrets I unveiled: I have realised that strict management of your diet accounts for 70 per cent of your weight loss efforts and the rest 30 per cent is working out properly. So, instead of only sweating it out in the gym, pay attention to what you are eating.

How do I stay motivated? My wife was my biggest motivator as she helped me throughout my weight loss journey. Additionally, my friends and family were my pillars of support and kept me motivated with their compliments and words of motivation.

How do you ensure you dont lose focus? I have understood that the continuous repetition of any behaviour will ultimately become a habit. I tried to lose weight several times and failed. However, I gradually understood that maintaining consistency when it comes to your diet and workout for at least two weeks will lead to visible changes. This in itself is enough to keep you going towards the path of fitness.

Whats the most difficult part of being overweight? I had the habit of buying only a few selected items of clothing before I started gaining weight. However, as the weight kept piling on, I had to buy new outfits every six months as I was no longer able to fit into my old clothes. I had also stopped spending a lot of time outdoors as my confidence had taken a beating. Moreover, I had started to give up on things very easily due to a predetermined mindset which is not my habit.

What shape do you see yourself 10 years down the line? I would like to have a swimmers body with literally zero fat.

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Weight loss story: This guy lost 24 kilos in just 6 months by doing cardio! Here's how he did it - Times of India

NUTRISHOP is Jumpstarting New Year’s Resolutions With Free In-Store Nutrition and Wellness Consultations – Yahoo Finance

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 10:44 am

HENDERSON, Nev., Jan. 22, 2020 /PRNewswire/ --NUTRISHOP, a customer-first, retail wellness and nutritional supplement franchise, is helping people from all walks of life and varied fitness levels not only kick offbut maintain their New Year's Resolutions through 2020 by providing a one-stop shop with free in-person health and wellness consultations at all NUTRISHOP locations, something they won't find at a typical online supplement retailer or big-box store.

NUTRISHOP store owners and staff are passionate about helping customers make positive lifestyle changes so they can live happy, healthy and fit lives in 2020 and beyond. The company does this not only by providing a wide selection of top-quality sports nutrition, weight loss, and wellness supplements, but by offering the personalized and caring attention that gets to the bottom of an individual's needs, concerns and goals, and suggesting the best possible game plan to help them get to where they want to be.

"Our in-store experience is very consultative, unique and customized. There is not one plan, one supplement, or one supplement stack to fit all individuals and their needs. We take the time to educate customers and make sure they are confident in their nutrition program," says NUTRISHOP founder and CEO Bryon McLendon. "If you're shopping for supplements online or even in a big-box store, who's going to tell you how to incorporate them into your daily regimen and motivate you to help you reach your goals faster and more efficiently? As a NUTRISHOP customer, having the direction and coaching given by a caring nutrition consultant is something unattainable through a screen or through big-box venues."

Since NUTRISHOP opened its first store in 2003, countless lives have been changed for the better. Take Jonathan Morales, for example.

"Initially, I really didn't know where to start or how to start my transformation journey. I knew I wanted to lose weight and get into better shape. NUTRISHOP helped me with understanding diet and supplementation to achieve my goals and lose 85 pounds," says Morales, a NUTRISHOP North Fontana, California, customer. "The customer service, guidance and information I was given were all a huge help in starting my transformation journey."

The franchise's personal approach aims to transform wellness retail and challenge the trending shift towards kiosks and subscription services that don't offer the beneficial in-store services that NUTRISHOP offers its customers. Some of these in-store services include personal meal plans, electronic body composition machine assessments, personal interaction to ensure each customer is recommended the right products specifically for them, and coaching with specific steps to help each customer ultimately reach their full potential. When it comes to product recommendations, NUTRISHOP prides itself on its high standards and quality in order to help customers achieve their goals safely and effectively.

"NUTRISHOP not only has the supplements you need but the heart and caring, supportive words to help you reach more than your physical goals," says Juan Diego Sanabria, a customer at NUTRISHOP Glendora, California. "They will help you get back to the person you were meant to be on the inside all along by helping you get healthy and in shape."

At NUTRISHOP, customers can stop in to discuss their personal health and fitness goals with a nutrition consultant who can take the guesswork out of nutrition and supplementation and help them start their unique transformation journey. At select stores, customers can do a quick and noninvasive InBody Analysis Scan that provides them and their nutrition consultant with a detailed breakdown of critical data and weight in terms of muscle, fat and water.

The easy-to-understand results sheet from the InBody Analysis contains the amounts and percentages of fat and muscle throughout the body and how the customer's individual body composition compares to a projected healthy range. A nutrition consultant will review the initial results and all follow-up results and tailor a customer's diet, exercise and supplement plan to meet their specific goals, offering continued guidance and support. Customers can also take advantage of customized meal plans that can be tailored to their specific diet needs and goals.

Story continues

"Having a NUTRISHOP has allowed my team of trainers and nutritionists to educate our clients about how to properly utilize supplementation and performance aides to achieve customized goals so they can acquire everything they need in one spot," says Amy Jo Palmquest, NUTRISHOP spokeswoman and owner of NUTRISHOP in Lacey, Washington.

NUTRISHOP locations not only offer one-on-one help but most host Transformation Challenges throughout the year. By committing to a NUTRISHOP Transformation Challenge, customers will experience full-time support, coaching and accountability to help them reach their goals and achieve results. Rules, regulations and prizes may vary by location.

For more information or to start a transformation journey, call or visit a local NUTRISHOP store. Find a store: http://www.nutrishopusa.com/find-nutrishop.

About NUTRISHOP

NUTRISHOP is dedicated to helping others live a fit, happy and healthy lifestyle. NUTRISHOP stores offer customers a low-price guarantee on a wide array of cutting-edge dietary supplements along with exceptional, individualized customer service, easy-to-follow meal plans, body composition assessment tools, and sound nutritional guidance. The NUTRISHOP business model focuses primarily on franchisee-owned and operated stores that provide consumers with the necessary tools to achieve their health and fitness goals. Learn more at http://www.NutrishopUSA.com.

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NUTRISHOP is Jumpstarting New Year's Resolutions With Free In-Store Nutrition and Wellness Consultations - Yahoo Finance

Forget Detox Diets! and Support Your Body’s Detoxification Naturally Every Single Day Tips from a Registered Nutritionist – The Wokingham Paper

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 10:44 am

Did you over-indulge during the festive season? Too much alcohol, too many mince pies, chocolates and snacks, or maybe just a few too many big heavy meals eaten late at night?

(Btw, we all did!)

If your digestion is now struggling and youve put on a few extra pounds, you might have already planned yourself a healthy dry January when you cut out everything bad from your diet to get your flat tummy back and to feel healthy again? Maybe you are determined to start a juice cleanse or a detox diet with BIG promises to lose those extra pounds?

STOP right there!

Not only are these restrictive diets extremely hard to do, particularly in the cold winter moths when your body craves and needs comforting and nourishing foods, but they can also do more harm than good. You really dont need to punish yourself with a detox diet just because you allowed yourself some festive enjoyment!

Start supporting your body every single day

Every day, our bodies are exposed to thousands of compounds, naturally occurring and synthetic, that need to be eliminated safely from the body. Some of these compounds are naturally occurring in the body as by-products of metabolism, some come from the diet (alcohol, caffeine, heavy metals, pesticides, burned foods) and some from the environment and the lifestyles we lead (e.g. medications, air pollution, plastics, synthetic chemicals in cosmetics and cleaning products, furnishings).

The body has several systems that are working hard every single second to make toxic compounds less harmful and ready for removal from the body. These are organs such as the liver, kidneys, skin, lungs, lymphatic system and the gut microbiome; the liver being the bodys main detoxification organ. But all of these systems need our support every single day to function optimally.

A short-term restrictive detox diet or juice cleanse is not going to help these systems in the long run. Its much better to help them every day with simple, sensible dietary and lifestyle choices that are much easier than restrictive diets.

My top tips for supporting the bodys detox functions all year round:

Want to learn more about detoxification, nutrition and healthy diet? Visit my website (below) or come and join me on Facebook @metawell or @Healthy New You For Life and Instagram @minna.wood.

To get advice for adopting a healthy eating plan that supports your bodys natural detoxification systems, gut health and overall health, book your free 30-minute mini-consultation with Minna here: https://calendly.com/metawell/

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Forget Detox Diets! and Support Your Body's Detoxification Naturally Every Single Day Tips from a Registered Nutritionist - The Wokingham Paper

Greenleaf: Pine Island has large population of pileated woodpeckers – Pine Island Eagle

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 10:44 am

According to Catherine Greenleaf, director of St. Francis Wild Bird Center in Lyme, New Hampshire, it would be hard to miss the pileated woodpecker because of its red, black and white coat, but also due to its large size, as it is second only to the ivory billed woodpecker.

Greenleaf, who rehabilitates injured and orphaned birds, said the pileated's ivory billed cousin is likely extinct, as no one has seen one in some time. Although some claim to have heard the call of the ivory billed woodpecker deep in the Louisiana swamps, she likens the claim to the hunt for Bigfoot.

Here in Pine Island, however, there is a large colony of the pileated woodpecker. Greenleaf, a part-time island resident, notes that Pineland holds a dense population of these birds, since they seem to like wooded areas. She also said their love for pine trees is born from a sweet tooth they can satisfy with sap.

Two pileated woodpeckers on a tree.

MARTHA HUARD

A pileated woodpecker feeding its baby, which is poking its head out of the side of a tree.

MARTHA HUARD

"Pine trees emit a sap, made of mostly water," said Greenleaf. "But it's got sugar and minerals in it that gives the pileated the energy it needs to get through the day."

She went on to explain the bird's sap hunting process, which is not too far removed from that of the hummingbird. The pileated woodpecker drills into the pine tree, causing sap to run, which not only benefits them, but many other birds as well, who are able to make a meal of the sap. Greenleaf further explained the pileated's love for pine resin, which may be tied to the fact that it is a natural anti-bacterial. Insects are vitally important for survival, just as they are for most birds that depend on the protein found in the insects. Greenleaf contends that contrary to the popular opinion, that birds love to eat seeds, given the choice. She said they much prefer protein-enriched insects, and in fact, will choose seeds only over starvation.

"Pileated woodpeckers," said Greenleaf, "are very beneficial to have around, because they love termites. Termites and carpenter ants are two of their favorite foods, so you won't end up with termites in your house if they are around."

The woodpecker's love for insects doesn't stop there however. According to Greenleaf, they will even drill into a tree to get to the larvae before they hatch. Ranking highly on their list of diet choices are beetles, cockroaches and grasshoppers. Insects, she explains, are roughly 90% of the pileated woodpecker's diet, with the other 10% consisting of mostly fruits and nuts.

"Dead trees are very beneficial to the pileated," said Greenleaf. "Because they have more insects in them then live trees. A lot of people don't realize that dead trees are loaded with insects. There is a vicious cycle going on. When people buy lots if they could just leave trees standing, rather than having them cleared out, the birds would have a wildlife environment."

She wants people to know about a movement called, "One Third For the Birds," which is an organizational effort to get people to leave one third of their property to surrounding wildlife. She maintains that doing this will allow the birds to go about their business in the wild, while the homeowner gets to enjoy the scenery. She believes that if trees have fallen in a place that's safely out of the way, the trees can be left for the birds to drill through, which will keep them from drilling into someone's home. She points out that the developing lands are driving the pileated woodpecker into more suburban areas around the island, which is why they have become more and more visible.

"They're a very shy bird," said Greenleaf. "They really don't prefer to fly across busy roads. The solution is to work with the wildlife that's here, and try to have as little impact as possible. It's possible to live in harmony with all of the birds, including the pileated woodpecker."

Greenleaf, who has been in bird rehabilitation for 20 years, spends the entire month of March on Pine Island every year, because of the large bird population. She has been asked to give a presentation on the pileated woodpecker at the Greater Pine Island Civic Association Board meeting Tuesday, March 3, at the Elks Club at Pine Island Center. The meeting is scheduled to start at 6:30 p.m.

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Greenleaf: Pine Island has large population of pileated woodpeckers - Pine Island Eagle

Why avoiding strength training as part of your new fitness regime is a mistake – The Irish News

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 10:44 am

EVERY January millions of us vow to get healthier and fitter, which will usually involve getting our heart rates up with some extra cardio, whether that's running, walking, cycling or swimming.

And this is excellent for boosting heart health, lowering blood pressure and supporting the immune system. Plus, if you're looking to lose excess weight, teaming cardio with a healthy, balanced diet can help shift pounds.

However, there's a big area of fitness that experts say millions of people are ignoring in their health-kick: building muscle. Strength training is often far down people's priority lists, particularly if their main aim is weight-loss, or if the weight section of a gym simply seems alien. But it seems we could be missing a trick.

"Being stronger is vital for health, sports performance, losing weight, gaining muscle, recovering from an injury and improving mobility," says human movement and performance coach Luke Worthington (lukeworthington.com), who describes strength as the "most important facet of a fitness programme".

Here are some of the reasons maintaining and/or building muscle is a vital part of overall fitness whatever your age or gender...

To do cardio safely, you need strength

Worthington says uptake in participation in fitness at this time of year is only ever a good thing, but he adds: "Jumping headfirst into hours of repetitive cardio isn't always a good idea.

"Cardiovascular exercise, especially when on a new year health-kick, often involves repeating the same action over and over again, so in other words, producing and absorbing the same forces for multiple repetitions. To do this effectively and safely requires strength."

Muscle is a great fat-burning tool

What if you could burn fat by lazing around in from of the TV? Well, actually you can if you've done the work in the gym first. "The more muscle mass you have, the higher your basal metabolic rate will be," explains head of fitness at Fiit (fiit.tv), Gede Foster.

Figures vary in different studies but Foster says: "Muscle tissue burns seven to 10 calories daily per pound, while fat burns two to three. So the more muscle you have, the more calories you'll burn just sitting on the sofa."

Nutrition and fitness expert Tom Jenane (natureshealthbox.co.uk), adds: "Strength training also helps the transportation of glucose to the muscle, which helps you to control your blood sugar levels." Which, in turn, can help regulate weight.

Those who most need to build muscle are often most likely to skip it

"The people most likely to avoid strength training are women, those trying to lose weight, and the elderly. These are, however, the three populations for which strength training is the most important," says Worthington.

As people get older, muscles lose strength and mass, known as sarcopenia. Therefore strength training for older people can be particularly important.

"As well as [helping] keep you mobile and pain-free, strength training is essential for maintaining bone mineral content and reducing the risk of osteoporosis," he says. "It's fundamental to joint health and pain prevention."

It can be empowering

"Strength training in women of all ages promotes bone density and healthy hormonal balance," says Worthington. "Aside from the physical benefits, I find with all my female clients that strength train is very empowering, giving a real and tangible goal of, for example, completing your first pull up."

Foster adds: "After the age of 30, women's bone density and muscle mass start to decrease if we don't do something about it. It's literally the 'use it or lose it' saying."

Being stronger can help prevent injuries, aches and pains

It's generally acknowledged that having a strong core is better for posture, and a good posture means some people are less likely to have back pain (but the causes of back pain can be many different things).

"One of the most overlooked areas is how it can actually help to prevent injuries," says Jenane. "A huge portion of the time, when people have lower back pain, it is because they haven't used the muscles enough and fat has built up where the muscle should be. If those muscles have become weak over time then they are over relying on the connecting tendons."

No, it won't make you bulky

Worthington says putting on muscle is actually a "very hard" thing to do. "Broadly speaking, a healthy male training and eating specifically to build muscle, is physiologically capable of putting on muscle at a rate of 1 per cent of their body weight per month and that's someone really trying their hardest to!

"Not wanting to work with weights for fear of becoming too bulky is a little like not taking your driving lessons through fear of accidentally winning the F1," he says.

You don't need to lift heavy weights

A 2016 study by McMaster University in the Journal of Applied Physiology challenged the traditional notion of heavy weightlifting, saying that lifting lighter weights (like smaller dumbbells) was often as efficient as lifting heavy weights with fewer repetitions.

Personal Trainer Kira Mahal, founder of MotivatePT (motivatept.co.uk) and Reset LDN, says: "Whilst many people think you need to be squatting or dead-lifting large bars to increase your muscle mass, this is simply untrue. You don't need to spend hours in the weights room at the gym; it's as easy as using basic equipment like ankle weights and resistance bands which drive muscle growth by activating the fibres in the muscle."

Small, light dumbbells are also a good place to start but body-weight exercises using your own body as resistance instead of weights can do wonders. Mahal recommends incorporating this into your training two to four times a week, and says the best body-weight exercises to start with are push-ups, squats, lunges and planks.

She says: "Make sure you are progressively overloading by increasing the number of reps for the allocated time limit in body-weight training every couple of sessions, and moving from easier to more difficult variations of the moves, as well as steadily increasing your weight or resistance if using extra equipment."

Always seek advice from your own doctor or physio before starting a new training regime, especially if you have a history of injuries or health problems

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Why avoiding strength training as part of your new fitness regime is a mistake - The Irish News

DASH diet: Healthy eating to lower your blood pressure …

Posted: January 23, 2020 at 10:44 am

DASH diet: Healthy eating to lower your blood pressure

The DASH diet emphasizes the right portion sizes, variety of foods and nutrients. Discover how DASH can improve your health and lower your blood pressure.

DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. The DASH diet is a lifelong approach to healthy eating that's designed to help treat or prevent high blood pressure (hypertension). The DASH diet plan was developed to lower blood pressure without medication in research sponsored by the National Institutes of Health.

The DASH diet encourages you to reduce the sodium in your diet and eat a variety of foods rich in nutrients that help lower blood pressure, such as potassium, calcium and magnesium.

By following the DASH diet, you may be able to reduce your blood pressure by a few points in just two weeks. Over time, the top number of your blood pressure (systolic blood pressure) could drop by eight to 14 points, which can make a significant difference in your health risks.

Because the DASH diet is a healthy way of eating, it offers health benefits besides just lowering blood pressure. The DASH diet is also in line with dietary recommendations to prevent osteoporosis, cancer, heart disease, stroke and diabetes.

The DASH diet emphasizes vegetables, fruits and low-fat dairy foods and moderate amounts of whole grains, fish, poultry and nuts.

In addition to the standard DASH diet, there is also a lower sodium version of the diet. You can choose the version of the diet that meets your health needs:

Both versions of the DASH diet aim to reduce the amount of sodium in your diet compared with what you might get in a typical American diet, which can amount to a whopping 3,400 mg of sodium a day or more.

The standard DASH diet meets the recommendation from the Dietary Guidelines for Americans to keep daily sodium intake to less than 2,300 mg a day.

The American Heart Association recommends 1,500 mg a day of sodium as an upper limit for all adults. If you aren't sure what sodium level is right for you, talk to your doctor.

Both versions of the DASH diet include lots of whole grains, fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy products. The DASH diet also includes some fish, poultry and legumes, and encourages a small amount of nuts and seeds a few times a week.

You can eat red meat, sweets and fats in small amounts. The DASH diet is low in saturated fat, trans fat and total fat.

Here's a look at the recommended servings from each food group for the 2,000-calorie-a-day DASH diet.

Grains include bread, cereal, rice and pasta. Examples of one serving of grains include 1 slice whole-wheat bread, 1 ounce dry cereal, or 1/2 cup cooked cereal, rice or pasta.

Tomatoes, carrots, broccoli, sweet potatoes, greens and other vegetables are full of fiber, vitamins, and such minerals as potassium and magnesium. Examples of one serving include 1 cup raw leafy green vegetables or 1/2 cup cut-up raw or cooked vegetables.

Many fruits need little preparation to become a healthy part of a meal or snack. Like vegetables, they're packed with fiber, potassium and magnesium and are typically low in fat coconuts are an exception.

Examples of one serving include one medium fruit, 1/2 cup fresh, frozen or canned fruit, or 4 ounces of juice.

Milk, yogurt, cheese and other dairy products are major sources of calcium, vitamin D and protein. But the key is to make sure that you choose dairy products that are low-fat or fat-free because otherwise they can be a major source of fat and most of it is saturated.

Examples of one serving include 1 cup skim or 1 percent milk, 1 cup low-fat yogurt, or 1 1/2 ounces part-skim cheese.

Meat can be a rich source of protein, B vitamins, iron and zinc. Choose lean varieties and aim for no more than 6 one-ounce servings a day. Cutting back on your meat portion will allow room for more vegetables.

Examples of one serving include 1 egg or 1 ounce of cooked meat, poultry or fish.

Almonds, sunflower seeds, kidney beans, peas, lentils and other foods in this family are good sources of magnesium, potassium and protein.

They're also full of fiber and phytochemicals, which are plant compounds that may protect against some cancers and cardiovascular disease.

Serving sizes are small and are intended to be consumed only a few times a week because these foods are higher in calories.

Examples of one serving include 1/3 cup nuts, 2 tablespoons seeds or nut butter, or 1/2 cup cooked beans or peas.

Fat helps your body absorb essential vitamins and helps your body's immune system. But too much fat increases your risk of heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

The DASH diet strives for a healthy balance by limiting total fat to less than 30 percent of daily calories from fat, with a focus on the healthier monounsaturated fats.

Examples of one serving include 1 teaspoon soft margarine, 1 tablespoon mayonnaise or 2 tablespoons salad dressing.

You don't have to banish sweets entirely while following the DASH diet just go easy on them. Examples of one serving include 1 tablespoon sugar, jelly or jam, 1/2 cup sorbet, or 1 cup lemonade.

Drinking too much alcohol can increase blood pressure. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends that men limit alcohol to no more than two drinks a day and women to one or less.

The DASH diet doesn't address caffeine consumption. The influence of caffeine on blood pressure remains unclear. But caffeine can cause your blood pressure to rise at least temporarily.

If you already have high blood pressure or if you think caffeine is affecting your blood pressure, talk to your doctor about your caffeine consumption.

While the DASH diet is not a weight-loss program, you may indeed lose unwanted pounds because it can help guide you toward healthier food choices.

The DASH diet generally includes about 2,000 calories a day. If you're trying to lose weight, you may need to eat fewer calories. You may also need to adjust your serving goals based on your individual circumstances something your health care team can help you decide.

The foods at the core of the DASH diet are naturally low in sodium. So just by following the DASH diet, you're likely to reduce your sodium intake. You also reduce sodium further by:

One teaspoon of table salt has 2,325 mg of sodium. When you read food labels, you may be surprised at just how much sodium some processed foods contain.

Even low-fat soups, canned vegetables, ready-to-eat cereals and sliced turkey from the local deli foods you may have considered healthy often have lots of sodium.

You may notice a difference in taste when you choose low-sodium food and beverages. If things seem too bland, gradually introduce low-sodium foods and cut back on table salt until you reach your sodium goal. That'll give your palate time to adjust.

Using salt-free seasoning blends or herbs and spices may also ease the transition. It can take several weeks for your taste buds to get used to less salty foods.

Try these strategies to get started on the DASH diet:

Remember, healthy eating isn't an all-or-nothing proposition. What's most important is that, on average, you eat healthier foods with plenty of variety both to keep your diet nutritious and to avoid boredom or extremes. And with the DASH diet, you can have both.

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