Losing weight could be a difficult and uphill battle. But the struggle to keep ourselves healthy does not end after a successful weight loss campaign. The other half of the battle which is the more important one is how to maintain our ideal weight and not going through the process again.
There are four basic ways of keeping our body within our ideal weight range. These four concepts are essential for any weight loss or health regimen:
- Balanced Meals – healthy eating does not mean alienating a food group altogether. Eating lots of fatty food is responsible for many weight problems but starving ourselves of this food group could also mean dire consequences for our health. The secret to a healthy diet is to eat foods within its recommended levels.
- Living an active lifestyle – being active means doing activities or simple exercises that require physical movement. Parking a few blocks away from your office and walking the rest of the way to your office is an excellent to burn some fats and build some muscles. Couch potatoes or those who spend a whole lot of hours sitting on their office desk are more likely to be overweight. This is because it doesn’t give their body the chance to burn excess fat.
- Healthy eating habits – this aspect of healthy living deals with a person’s attitude towards food. The brain is responsible for many of our body’s processes. Eating is a conscious activity that requires guidance from our brain. A healthy attitude towards food helps us stick to our diet plans.
- Understanding weight problems – educating ourselves with the causes of overweight problems is an important step in living a healthy lifestyle. Understanding the mechanism of fat storage and how the body burns this is essential in helping people appreciate what they are doing.
Body Mass Index – Determining your weight
Everybody is not created equally this of course would refer on our body built. Being overweight is not merely tipping the scale within certain ranges. One could weigh at 220 pounds and yet be perfectly normal and another could tip the scale at 130 pounds and be overweight.
The normal body weight largely depends on the person’s sex and weight. These are then factored in with the person’s weight to determine if they are within normal levels. People classified as overweight are those with BMI that is equal or more than 30 points their normal range.
Common Problems with Weight loss
Many diet programs fail simply because people get so impatient that they drop the health program. The key to an effective diet program is to find one which is designed to work for you. Some diets are so extreme that it often entails starving our bodies of much needed nutrients. Conservative diet programs are designed to help people slide into a healthy eating routine.
Long term benefits often require long term solutions. This is why people who undergo liposuction procedures are back where they started from in a few years or months. Fad or crash diets may not be the best solution for weight loss because they don’t educate people about the true value of healthy living.
Other convenient treatments for shedding unwanted fat deposits are through the use of diet pills. Actions include curbing one’s appetite or preventing the uptake of fats from food. However, this could also have side effects. People who use diet pills reported fatigue, depression, insomnia and vomiting.
Other weight loss methods include the use of natural herbs and supplements. These also act as diet pills and others work to increase metabolic rates which improve how we utilize and burn fats.
Keeping weight loss safe
Overweight problems are the result of years of unhealthy eating and living. This is a condition that does not happen overnight and the best solutions are those that are brought by long term life changing habits. Exercise and diets are still the best one-two punch in finally knocking down your overweight problems. These may not produce the same dramatic effects of liposuction surgery but it ensures that your weight loss program stays safe and healthy.
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High cholesterol levels (above 200 mg/dL) is one of the major health problems experienced by adults today. With high cholesterol levels, one experiences high risks of heart attack and it is something that people would not want to experience especially that many wishes to live a long, fruitful life. People who eat more of fatty and unhealthy food are often victims of high cholesterol levels. Well, we cannot blame them though, a quarter pounder and a bag of fries are quite hard to resist.
Understanding how cholesterol works in our body is important to manage it right. Below are facts that you might want to add in your bank of knowledge.
What is Cholesterol?
- Cholesterol is a waxy (lipid fat) substance that is produced by the liver and is available in certain foods.
- It is important in our body’s daily function. Every cell in our body has cholesterol in its outer layer.
- It plays a role in the production of Vitamin D, some hormones, building of cell walls, and creates bile for fat digestion.
- The liver produces 1,000 milligrams of cholesterol a day, an enough amount to keep you going even without external intake from food.
- It is not easy to get rid of it because most food has it.
The LDL Cholesterol
While cholesterol is beneficial to the body in the right amount, there is such a thing called LDL cholesterol. It is abbreviated from Low Density Lipoproteins that in laymen’s’ term is “bad” cholesterol. It causes plaque build-up in the arterial walls that brings about heart diseases like atherosclerosis.
Reducing the levels of bad cholesterol and increasing the “good” cholesterol (High density lipoproteins (HDL)) is the primary solution to keep your heart safe. By increasing the amount of HDL, LDL is carried back to the liver where it is processed to be flushed out of your system.
The Factors affecting Cholesterol Levels
- Age and Gender
- Other Causes
Natural and Practical Ways to Lower the Bad Cholesterol
The first three factors that affect cholesterol levels can be determined by your kind of lifestyle. While age and heredity cannot be avoided, the way you live creates a big impact to your health. Depending on your health condition, ask your physician for professional advice on how to manage your cholesterol levels.
Get your right amount of Omega-3. Natural sources of Omega 3 include cold water fishes and calamari oil. One of the most potent food in reducing bad cholesterol levels is Omega-3. High levels of Omega-3 in your diet can reduce the risk of developing blood clots and can lower blood pressure. Mackerel, calamari, salmon, herring, sardines and a lot of food sources are rich in Omega-3. If you can’t get your amount through diet, Omega-3 supplement can help.
Nuts. Almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, pecans, and other nuts can lower your numbers. They are rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids that also keep the blood vessels healthy. However, be wary on this, the nuts should not be salted nor high with sugar content. Nuts can be very high in calories, so limiting your intake into a handful can bring the most of its benefits.
High fiber food. Soluble fiber can lower the absorption of lower cholesterol into your bloodstream. It is easy to find high-fiber food. With 1 ½ cup of oatmeal a day mixed with fruits, you are not only feeding your body with delicious food, you are also giving your body an input for good health.
Our health is all that we got. Keeping our cholesterol levels low is helping our body function optimally for our own benefit and for the people who matters to us the most.
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A change of diet can build a stronger heart. Since most of the things that leads to the condition can be blamed to unhealthy food that one consumed, then it is best to reverse the illness through the same factor, through diet.
There are lots of foods that can offer protection for the heart. These foods have nature’s natural protective enzymes, compounds, nutrients and anti-oxidants which if can’t reverse the heart’s dilemma can reduce the risk and reduce the severity of the condition.
Healthy Heart Foods
Salmon is one in the first choice in heart protection and heart strengthening goals. Salmon and other fatty foods such as sardines and mackerel are known to top the super foods list when it comes to heart health. So what’s with salmon and other fatty fish?
Salmon and its peers maybe called fatty fish but it contains a different kind of fat, the healthy one. This is called the long chained fatty acid, omega-3. It has been the subject of hundreds of studies and has been known for its heart benefits. It is known to lower the risk of arrhythmia which may lead to heart attack and atherosclerosis or the plaque building condition in the artery. Many health organizations all over the world advocates the inclusion of fish in everyday meal or the supplementation of omega-3 from fish oil and other marine sources such as krill and calamari.
Oatmeal can be more than your daily breakfast; it can be a heart soldier. Oatmeal may help strengthen the heart through its soluble fiber which helps in lowering cholesterol. One major factor in heart disease control is controlling cholesterol level as well. The oatmeal with its fiber may act up and soak all the cholesterol then let it be eliminated in the body without having contact in the bloodstream.
Oatmeal for the heart though isn’t that instant oatmeal which is sweet and artificially sweetened. Instead go for old fashioned oats. Experts recommended other whole grains with fiber such as bread pasta and grits.
Blueberries together with other berries can help decrease blood pressure and dilate blood vessels. In a study conducted with women in the age of 25-52, it is found out that those who eat three servings of blueberries together with strawberries have lowered risk of heart attack compared to those who eat less.
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Regular exercise is the best way to get those flabby muscles in shape. However, that is only half of the whole picture. A balanced diet that is packed with nutritional goodness is also tantamount to achieving the physique that you have always dreamed about. Including the following food items in your diet will help you tone your muscles to perfection.
Protein is very important in building muscle and animal products like chicken are full of it. Your muscles will go through some wear and tear during high impact exercise and will need protein to repair faster. Chicken is also a great alternative to red meat since it does not contain excess fat that you might have to burn off.
One egg contains about 6g of protein. Needless to say consuming them a few times in a week can increase your body’s protein levels significantly. However, the yolks themselves do contain a considerable amount of fat so make sure that you settle for the egg whites themselves instead. This way you will still be able to receive the recommended amount of protein while skipping on the excess calories from the yolks.
Vegetables are considered to be a healthier alternative to animal products especially when it comes to achieving optimal efficiency from your workouts. For example a cup of lentils includes 18g of protein and less than one gram of fat while a 6 oz steak includes 38g of protein but 44 g of fat.
Including water in your daily diet goes without saying but is worth mentioning anyway. In fact water is the most essential component of any muscle toning diet and for good reason. Not only does it effectively carry essential nutrients to your body’s extremities it also removes waste. Besides that it is a good source of potassium, chloride, sodium and calcium which help your muscles to grow. Regular water intake also prevents your muscles from cramping up during low and high impact exercise routines.
These are one of the most protein rich vegetables out there. A single cup of soybeans contains a whopping 29g of protein. Soy beans are also a great source of vitamins, fiber and minerals. Plus they are a great source of protein that comes without any additional fat.
Other Toning Foods
Opt for skinless poultry and tuna for lean proteins. If you absolutely have to have dairy products make sure that you go for the nonfat variety. Other sources of lean protein might include oats, wheat, barley and corn.
Fat Burning Foods
Trainers recommend consuming foods that will kick your body’s metabolism into high gear and help you burn fat faster. Foods that contain a considerable of Vitamin C will do just that. To ensure that your body is receiving sufficient amount of the vitamin, eat a grapefruit or orange before or after your workouts as a healthy snack. The water content in the fruits will keep you hydrated and boost your nutrient levels at the same time.
Sticking to foods that make you feel invigorated is a great way to ensure muscular health so make sure that you include such foods in your regular diet as well. Before long your muscle tone will start shaping itself just the way you want.
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