Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Natural Home Detox the Healthy Way

A healthy detox diet can have a very positive impact on your health, but if you've never done a body detox before, you should learn how to detox your body safely and healthily before you begin any kind of liver detox or other detox diet.

Detox is short for detoxification and invovles the removing of toxic substances from your body via the bloodstream. The human body has a natural detox function through the liver, kidneys and lower gastrointestinal tract. Before learning how to detox your body, you need to understand the basics of how your body cleanses itself: The liver attempts to keep the body clean as it denies other toxins from entering the blood stream, however, over time, this body detox process is exposed to so many toxins that this natural fight mechanism can wear down - so learning how to detox your body can bring substantial benefits to your health and well being.

We are constantly exposed to thousands of toxins and chemicals on a daily basis at our work locations, in our homes, through the air that we breathe or our food and water supply. In addition, our diets include more processed foods, sugars and non-healthy fats than ever before. These factors plus other contributors like illness, disease, alcohol, tobacco, illegal/pharmaceutical drugs, even over-eating, can cause your natural body detox process to struggle or become sluggish. This is where doing a liver detox with a healthy detox diet comes into it's own.

Research has indicated, even without the inevitable breakdown of our body detox functions, the human body is simply not capable of eliminating the variety of toxins and chemicals that are ingested on a daily basis. The toxins will accumulate in our cells (especially fat cells), blood, tissues, organs (colon, liver and brain) and remain stored for an indefinite length of time bringing all kinds of eventual health problems as time goes by.

Learning how to detox is most often achieved through means like the modification of diet, the use of herbs or teas and more radical methods like colon hydrotherapy, body cleansing juice fasting and sweat lodges. These methods are said to jump start the body's natural detoxification process. In certain cases artificial detox techniques such as dialysis may have to be implemented.

The word detox is also used to describe the initial detoxification step in any drug or alcohol abuse rehabilitation program. Drug detox is the first step in the journey to abstinence and a drug-free life. The process must always be done under medical supervision and care since the patient will likely battle withdrawal symptoms while abstaining from whatever substance they are dependent on. Through learning how to detox your body and abstinence the body is cleansed from the toxins brought on from abusing their bodies. There should be a greater chance of the patient staying clean if counseling and other rehabilitation efforts are continued following detoxification.

More people are aware of detoxification procedures in today's world due to modern medicine's link between colon health and overall health. There is a belief that many common complaints like fatigue, gas, bloating, constipation, headaches, indigestion and weight gain are due in large part to a build up of toxin-filled fecal matter that builds in the colon over time.

Compare the functions of the colon in our bodies to a sewer system in a large city. If debris clogged a region's sewer system it would only be a matter of time before the repercussions would be felt within the area. The neighborhood would be filled with filth, there would be a horrific stench, and the sewage overflow could possibly contaminate the drinking water. It would not be a healthy environment. People would become sick. The same applies to the human body when the detoxification process is not working well. An overall well-being is felt when the colon is clean and healthy. When it becomes congested it's not difficult to imagine the potential health consequences.

With obesity becoming more and more of a major health concern there has been a renewed focus on the link between the buildup of toxins and weight gain, especially with belly fat and waist size. Therefore, learning how to detox with a healthy detox diet, and getting a good liver detox for a total body detox is a very important part of many weight loss programs.

Healthy Holiday Eating

When the holidays arrive, many people forget all
about their diets and healthy eating. Weight
gains of 7 - 10 pounds are common between
Halloween and Christmas. To make the holidays
easier, these tips will help you with healthy
eating through the season and not gaining weight.

Most traditional foods can be made low fat.
Turkey is very lean without the skin, and gravy
can be made without any fat. Potatoes that are
served without butter can be very healthy. The
beloved pumpkin pie is nutritious, although it
can be made into a fatty dessert with the adding
of whipped cream.

Even though the holidays are in, don't forget
about the exercise. Keeping weight off during
the holiday season is burning off the extra
calories. You should plan a walk after meals,
park farther from stores when you shop, and
take a few walks around the mall before you
begin shopping.

During holiday parties and at family dinners,
feel free to sample foods although you shouldn't
splurge. Decide on what you plan to eat in
advance, then stick to your plan. Eat plenty
of vegetables, fruit, low fat dressings, and
slices of lean meats. Before you go to a party,
eat a small snack to help curb your appetite.

If at all possible, avoid alcohol. Having too
many drinks can cripple your will power, and
also add excess calories to your diet. In the
place of alcohol, drink water with lemon. Water
can help to limit your appetite and keep you
from binging. Also make sure to avoid eggnog,
as each glass can have up to 300 calories.

Be flexible with your healthy eating, as one bad
meal won't ruin your diet. Try to balance your
calories over a few days and don't just look at
one meal or day.

Facts About Fiber

If you've been looking for a way towards a high
octane diet, you'll find fiber to be exactly what
you need. Even though research has shown fiber to
be powerful, many people aren't taking this nutrient

To help you fuel your health with fiber, here are
10 facts to help.

1. Fiber fights diseases. A diet high in fiber can
help to prevent colon cancer and heart disease. High
fiber helps the body to eliminate cholesterol by
binding it in the digestive tract. For thousands of
years, fiber has been used to stop constipation.

2. Fiber can actually help with overeating. All high
fiber foods will take longer to chew and digest,
making you feel satisfied longer

3. Most popular foods don't have enough fiber. If
you like the more popular foods, you probably need
to increase your intake of fiber.

4. Grains offer the most fiber. Dietary fiber is
actually plant matter that we cannot digest. The best
sources are whole grains and concentrated grain

5. Kids need fiber as well. Children that are older
than 2 years of age should consume a daily intake of
fiber. Kids are most receptive to fiber found in
fruits, vegetables, and even fortified breakfast

6. More fiber needs more water. In order to keep
fiber moving through your digestive tract, you'll
need to consume a lot of water. With your diet of
fiber, you'll need eight or more glasses of water
every day.

7. Fiber cannot be cooked out. When you cook
your fruits and vegetables, don't worry about cooking
the fiber out, as it stays. The fiber found in
fruits and vegetables aren't just in the skin or
in the peel.

8. You can get enough fiber. If you eat more than
50 grams of fiber in a day, you can get diarrhea
and bloating, which can interfere with your body's
absorption of other key minerals.

9. Getting the right amount of fiber in your diet
doesn't have to be hard. Even though you may think
so, getting the amount of fiber you need isn't very
hard to do. All you have to do is eat the right
foods and you'll be well on your way to a fiber
rich lifestyle.

As one of the key ingredients to healthy eating,
fiber is something you don't want to skip. Fiber can
serve many different purposes, which were covered
above. If you aren't getting enough fiber in your
diet - you should do something about now instead
of waiting until it is too late.

Exercise for Health and Fitness

Being active makes a person healthy and strong. It is not just for people who have a weight problem but for everyone who likes to stay fit.

There is a lot a person can do such jog or walk every morning, play basketball or any other sport with friends but if a person wants to have muscles and look lean, then one can sign up and workout in a gym.

People workout for 3 reasons;

The first is that the person is overweight and the only way to lose those extra pounds will be to reduce ones calorie intake and at the same time workout in the gym.

The second is that the person is underweight and the only way to add extra pounds is to have more calories in ones diet and workout.

The third is just for fun and to keep that person in shape.

The best exercise plan should have cardiovascular and weight training exercises. This helps burn calories and increase the muscle to fat ratio that will increase ones metabolism and gain or lose weight.

Just like taking any medicine, one should first consult the doctor before undergoing any form of exercise.

Here are some benefits of exercising;

1. It is the easiest way to maintain and improve ones health from a variety of diseases and premature death.

2. Studies have shown that it makes a person feels happier and increases ones self esteem preventing one from falling into depression or anxiety.

3. An active lifestyle makes a person live longer than a person who doesn’t.

Working out for someone who has not done it before should be done gradually. Endurance will not be built in a day and doing it repeatedly will surely be beneficial to the person.

It is advisable to workout regularly with a reasonable diet.

A person can consult with a dietitian or a health professional to really help plan a good diet program. It starts by evaluating the lifestyle and the health of the patient before any program can be made.

Afterwards, this is thoroughly discussed and recommended to the person which usually consists of an eating plan and an exercise program that does not require the use of supplements or one to purchase any expensive fitness equipment.

A good diet should have food from all the food groups.

This is made up by 2 things. The first is carbohydrates. The food that a person consumes should have vitamins, minerals and fiber. A lot of this can come from oats, rice, potatoes and cereals. The best still come from vegetables and fruits since these have phytochemicals, enzymes and micronutrients that are essential for a healthy diet.

The second is fat which can come from mono and poly saturated food sources rather than animal fats. Since fat contains more than double the number of calories in food, this should be taken in small quantities to gain or lose weight.

Another way to stay healthy is to give up some vices. Most people smoke and drink. Smoking has been proven to cause lung cancer and other diseases as well complications for women giving birth. Excessive drinking has also shown to do the same.

For people who don’t smoke, it is best to stay away from people who do since studies have shown that nonsmokers are also at risk of developing cancer due to secondary smoke inhalation.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Healthy Diet Tips

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, a healthy diet as one that Emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products; includes lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts; and is low in saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, salt (sodium), and added sugars. But just what minerals and nutrients are vital to our health and well-being? Consider these nutrient-dense foods when you’re looking to improve your vitamin and mineral intake.

Vitamin A is needed for good eyesight and optimal functioning of the immune system. Cod liver oil, dairy products, sweet potatoes and dark green leafy vegetables are all great natural food sources of vitamin A.

Vitamin B1, also known as thiamin, is imperative to the body’s ability to process carbohydrates. Whole grain breads, cereals and pastas have high amounts of thiamin.

Riboflavin, or B2, can be found in fortified cereals, almonds, asparagus, eggs, and meat. It’s used in many body processes, including converting food into energy and the production of red blood cells.

Niacin, also known as B3, can be found in lean chicken, tuna, salmon, turkey, enriched flour, peanuts, and fortified cereals. It aids in digestion and also plays a key role in converting food into energy.

Vitamin B6 can be found in fortified cereals, fortified soy-based meat substitutes, baked potatoes with skin, bananas, light-meat chicken and turkey, eggs, and spinach. It’s vital for a healthy nervous system, and helps break down proteins and stored sugars.

Vitamin B12 is needed for creating red blood cells, and can be found in beef, clams, mussels, crabs, salmon, poultry, and soybeans.

Citrus fruits, red berries, tomatoes, potatoes, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, red and green bell peppers, cabbage, and spinach are all loaded with vitamin C, which is vital to promoting a healthy immune system, and making chemical messengers in the brain.

Vitamin D can be found in fortified milk, cheese, and cereals; egg yolks; salmon; but can also be made by the body from sunlight exposure. It’s needed to process calcium and maintain the health of bones and teeth.

Vitamin E functions as an antioxidant and is essential to your skin’s good health. Eat plenty of leafy green vegetables, almonds, hazelnuts, and vegetable oils like sunflower, canola, and soybean to get this vital nutrient.

Folic acid can be found in fortified cereals and grain products; lima, lentil, and garbanzo beans; and dark leafy vegetables. It’s vital for cell development, prevents birth defects, promotes heart health, and helps red blood cells form. Pregnant women need to take special care to ensure they are getting enough of this for themselves and their developing baby.
Dairy products, broccoli, dark leafy greens like spinach and rhubarb, and fortified products, such as orange juice, soy milk, and tofu are all loaded with calcium. Like vitamin D, it’s very important in helping to build and maintain strong bones and teeth.

Organ meats, oysters, clams, crabs, cashews, sunflower seeds, wheat bran cereals, whole-grain products, and cocoa products are all high in copper, which aids in metabolism of iron and red cell formation. It also assists in the production of energy for cells.

Iron can be found in leafy green vegetables, beans, shellfish, red meat, poultry, soy foods, and some fortified foods. It’s needed to transport oxygen to all parts of the body via the red blood cells.

Potassium can be found in foods like Broccoli, potatoes (with the skins on), prune juice, orange juice, leafy green vegetables, bananas, raisins, and tomatoes. It aids in nervous system and muscle function and also helps maintain a healthy balance of water in the blood and body tissues.

Red meat, fortified cereals, oysters, almonds, peanuts, chickpeas, soy foods, and dairy products are great dietary sources of zinc. Zinc supports the body’s immune function, reproduction capabilities, and the nervous systems.
Protein is the main component of muscles, organs, and glands. Every living cell and all body fluids, except bile and urine, contain protein. The cells of muscles, tendons, and ligaments are maintained with protein. Children and adolescents require protein for growth and development, and adults need it to maintain cell integrity. It can be found in foods like beans, milk and meat.
The primary function of carbohydrates is to provide energy for the body, especially the brain and the nervous system. Complex carbohydrates are the best choice for a stable blood sugar level. Whole grain breads and cereals, legumes, and starchy vegetables are all good complex carbohydrate sources.
Essential fatty acids play a part in many metabolic processes, and there is evidence to suggest that low levels of essential fatty acids, or the wrong balance of types among the essential fatty acids, may be a factor in a number of illnesses. Good sources are fish and shellfish, flaxseed, canola oil, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, leafy vegetables, and walnuts.
Though this list is far from complete, it gives a good base of knowledge on which to build a healthy, well-balanced diet.

Superfoods For Healthy Menopause

Including these superfoods in your diet can help to alleviate symptoms associated with menopause, maintain your memory power, and prevent osteoporosis. These superfoods are delicious to eat, easy to prepare, and super-good for you!

Tofu is an alternative protein source to meat. Along with other soy products, tofu can be beneficial for lowering your cholesterol and preventing heart disease. Soy products like tofu may also decrease the side effects associated with menopause, including the dreaded ‘hot flashes.’

Navy beans are loaded with fiber, which can help reduce your risk of color and other forms of cancer, as well as relieve the symptoms associated with diverticulosis. Women need 30 grams of fiber each day, so include them in your favorite chili recipe, or try them as a side dish alternative to pasta or rice.

Packed with calcium, yogurt can help prevent osteoporosis. It has also been shown to boost your immunity and help with weight management. Additionally, yogurt contains high amounts of good bacteria such as acidophilus, which helps to prevent yeast infections and urinary tract infections. It also contains protein, which may help your body battle the fatigue and weariness that follows a hot flash.

As we age, we sometimes find ourselves forgetting things or feeling as if we’re in a fog. If you find this to be the case, grab for the blueberries the next time you’re shopping for groceries. Recent studies show they may actually help with short-term memory loss. They’re also loaded with antioxidants. Pair them with some low-fat plain yogurt for a top-notch way to protect both your brain and your bones.

Avocado also contains antioxidants, such as vitamin E, which can help to protect your vision and skin, which can suffer as we age. The monounsaturated fat found in avocados has also been shown to improve the condition of hair and skin. They’re great on a turkey sandwich, or mash up a few ripe ones and whip up a quick side of guacamole to have with some low-fat baked tortilla chips.

And as always, it’s important to make low-fat and low-sodium choices when menu planning. These do nothing to help alleviate the symptoms brought on by menopause, and are unhealthy options at any age, but especially as we grow older. Avoid smoking or alcohol, and get plenty of rest, and you’ll soon find your menopause symptoms are easily managed.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Aging Healthy With Positive Thinking

How to think positive

Many people wander the earth believing they the lack the strength and power to achieve their goals. This negative mechanism holds them down. You can gain motivation and live healthier, by simply telling yourself “I can do it.” Anything you put your mind to, you can do it if you want to.

How to tell self I can do it:
Just say today I am going for a short walk. Tomorrow I will walk a little longer then the first day. You have to be in control of your thoughts, actions, behaviors, etc by building your power of the mind. Nevertheless, if you do not put your mind to it and you decide that you do not want to become active, and then you are only living a life filled with shortcomings. Your negative reflections will defeat the purpose of getting your thoughts in control. Saying I will do it later, is another negative reflection. This is called procrastination, which leads to laziness. Laziness leads to weak muscles and joints, which gradually builds up to medical problems.

Take control of your thoughts. If you want to do something bad enough you will do what you have to do to get where you want to be. You need to make a goal and stick to it. Create plans that help you to reach your goals, and take action each day to achieve. When you give up, it is a sign that you lack faith in self and is a clear indication of weakness. You need faith to stay strong. As well, you need positive thinking to strive.

Good results:
Having a positive attitude will give you a jumpstart to a healthier life. Keep on pushing. Do not stop once you get started instead go until you reach your goal. When times get hard and you don’t think you can go on just remember I –can- do – this always keep your head up and mind open. Don’t dwell on something you can’t change, rather focus on the things you have power to change.

How to continue positive living:
To stay positive you have to admit your feelings and express them. If you feel depressed or frustrated, just say it aloud. There is nothing wrong with showing emotions, providing you do not beat up your best friend physically to express those emotions. Stay in control and express what you feel.

You have to talk about how you feel and don’t blame your self but try to figure out why you are so depressed or frustrated. Failing to discover your intentions or reasons will reduce your control, especially if you do not understand what you need or want. Do not worry about the cause, rather find your wants and needs and the cause will come to you.

Here is some pointer that might help you to get where you want to be. You have to look for a good role model and become acquainted with their way of thinking positive. Try to talk positive and avoid negative talk. Seek some support from friends and family.

Reward your self with a massage or listen to your favorite music. Make a plan and stay with it no matter what. Just remember you can do whatever you want to do and keep your mind set for the good things and not the bad things. This will make you feel better and make you a happier person. If you’re happy, you will have a healthier life. Don’t forget to create a goal. Don’t make the goal so high that you won’t be able to keep it, but make it so that you can meet your goals.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Weight Loss Surgery, Minimizing the Health Risks

If you have been watching your weight go up and you are worried about the rising pounds, you may be wondering whether weight loss surgery really works. Is it possible to prevent future weight gain by putting yourself on a well-known weight loss surgical operation?

Today, weight loss surgeries are gradually gaining recognition when it comes to losing weight. Many health experts contend that people who are excessively overweight or has slower metabolism would normally require some surgical operations.

Surgery at Present

The greatest progress in the care of the surgical patient has taken place since the beginning of the present century. An increasing knowledge of disease and disorder as a result of research has permitted the development of many diagnostic aids. Some of these depend upon roentgenograms, laboratory procedures such as chemical, bacteriologic, and pathologic determinations, as well as monitoring devices and computer aids.

Hence, the result is that the diagnosis of disease and disorder is made with more exactness and certainty than was possible from the simple clinical examinations of previous days.

That is why people who wish to undergo weight loss surgery should no longer be afraid of the procedure because high clinical standards are now being implemented in every surgical operation.

The Concept of Weight Loss Surgery

Health experts contend that weight loss surgery is a “major surgery.” One of the most common reasons why people would like to lose weight is to enhance their physical attributes. However, it should not be the underlying motivation that they should undergo the process of weight loss surgery.

What people do not know is that weight loss surgery is especially generated to help obese people live longer, healthier, and better.

That is why it is important for an individual to meticulously analyze his or her situation, do some research about the process, and analyze if weight loss surgery is the ultimate choice for his or her physiological condition.

Moreover, it is important to gather further information about weight loss surgery by consulting an experienced and knowledgeable bariatric surgeon or even just an expert family physician who knows the ins and outs of weight loss surgery.

In addition, the patient should also consult the other health experts such as the psychiatrist and dietician with regards to some psychological advices on long-term goals after the operation.

Generally, patients who have undergone weight loss surgery are said to be successful if they were able to lose 50% or more of their extra body weight and will be able to maintain that condition for the next five years or so. However, the results of the operation may still vary depending on the clinical information of the patient and the skills of the bariatric surgeon.

Normally, the patient will be able to lose at least 30% to a maximum of 50% during the first six months after surgery; and within the year after the operation, the patient has the potential of losing weight up to a maximum of 77%.

Best of all, people who were able to loss weight through surgical operations can actually maintain a continuous weight loss of up to 50% to 60% in the next 10 to 14 years after surgery.

Factors to Consider

As with the other weight loss management programs, there are many factors to consider before the patient should decide to undergo weight loss surgery.

Consequently, the actual weight that will be lost is reliant on the weight before surgery, surgical procedure, patient’s age, capability to exercise, total health condition of the patient, dogged determination to maintain the necessary follow-up nurture, and the enthusiasm to succeed with the help of their family, friends, and their colleagues.

If you have just put on a few extra pounds and want to avoid gaining more, these weight loss surgeries for better health may seem convincing. But, in addition to being convinced, you may also have to take some action to ensure that your weight does not creep upward.

Therefore, it can be concluded that losing weight is not just a question of deciding to be strong-willed and determined or upbeat and positive. Lifestyle changes are where it is at for long-term success with your weight especially after weight loss surgery.

Why Multi Vitamin Supplements Are Beneficial

The majority of people do not eat a sufficiently balanced diet to provide them with all of the vitamins that they require and this has led to a boom in the multi vitamin supplement industry. Multi vitamin supplements are available in a number of different forms, including tablets, gel capsules and even liquids. Of course the most obvious benefit to taking multi vitamin supplements is convenience. It is far easier for a person to take one dose of a multi vitamin supplement that contains all of the necessary vitamins compared to taking each one individually. This is especially the case for children as it can be difficult for them to take a large number of vitamin supplements but one dose of a multi vitamin supplement is far easier. Of course, a liquid multi vitamin supplement is the most suitable form for children but it is also beneficiate anyone who has difficulty taking supplements in traditional tablet form.

The increase in the availability of multi vitamin supplements has led to a great variety in the brands and also the actual content of the multi vitamin supplements. The names of some of the nutrients in these multi vitamin supplements can be a little bewildering and many people simply do not know which ones they require. To make the decision simpler there are now a number of multi vitamin supplements created for specific people. For example, there are multi vitamin supplements that are designed for children. These multi vitamin supplements contain the specific nutrients that children need for them to grow and develop properly. Pregnant women have unique nutrient requirements to ensure that their baby receives the necessary nutrients and there are multi vitamin supplements prepared for pregnant women. As we get older we also have different nutrient requirements and multi vitamin supplements for the elderly are a popular product.

It is important to consider the contents of any multi vitamin supplement before consuming too many. There are some vitamins that can be toxic if too much is absorbed and this can occur more easily with multi vitamin supplements as some of the content may be overlooked. The labeling of the actual percentage of the recommended daily allowance for each vitamin in a multi vitamin supplement should be clearly labelled and must be assessed before a person takes them. Always seek professional medical advice before taking any multi vitamin supplement if there is any doubt as to the benefits of the contents.

Triglyceride and Cholesterol Lowering Diet

When people undergo a blood test, there are four things that the doctor will review carefully before revealing the results to the patient. These are namely the LDL, HDL, triglyceride level and total cholesterol.

If any of these are way above the normal range, the doctor will make some recommendations before it is too late. The most common advice given is to make changes in the diet. This is because the numbers that come out can improve dramatically by changing the food being eaten.

People are well aware of what LDL and HDL is which is basically the good and bad cholesterol in the bloodstream. There isn’t that much said about a triglyceride and is often referred to just as a type of fat.

So what happens when there is too much triglyceride in the body? When a patient has too much of this in the blood, this puts the person at a greater risk of succumbing to heart disease.

The food being eaten can make this go up or down even if the individual is not allowed to eat for at least 14 hours before the checkup. The normal range should fall between 10 and 250 mgs./dl, which unfortunately a lot of people exceed.

Studies show that many patients who have high triglyceride levels also have high total cholesterol levels. It is a good thing that it is possible to kill two birds with one stone by having a dietitian prepare a simple diet plan.

The basic plan involves eating foods that are low in fat. Breakfast for example can be whole grain breads with a little touch of egg whites. The person should stop drinking coffee and replace this with unsweetened tea. Those who prefer milk should use non-fat or try some fresh juice instead.

Breakfast may have been light so the individual can have chicken without skin or the choice of lean cut meats such as flank, round, rump or sirloin served with some vegetables on the side.

Drinking bottled water is much healthier than ordering a can of diet soda because this still has certain properties that are not good for someone who is trying to cut down on cholesterol intake.

Those who want to get a quick bite as a snack can have fruit or vegetables strips. The person won’t find this in the store so getting up a little earlier in the morning or preparing this the night before is a good idea so the plastic container can be put into the bag before going to work.

Dinner must also be light because the body will soon rest and will not burn that much calories when one is sleeping. Steamed fish will do well or a little pasta. The individual can have a glass of red wine with the meal to help it go down into the belly.

The practice of this healthy habit must not only be done when eating home cooked meals. This should also be done when dining out with friends because a slight disruption in the plan can have certain consequences to someone who is trying to make some lifestyle changes.

Living a healthy life free from high levels of triglyceride and cholesterol can be achieved. It just takes a little determination and discipline to make this happen.

Mind and Body Healing Superfoods

When the goal is rejuvenating the body, mind and spirit, the method should be smaller, more frequent snacks and meals. This will help keep energy levels on an even keel, and regulate your blood sugar levels to avoid spikes and dips. When you choose the right combination of foods, your body gets the much-needed boost it needs to sustain itself properly, even through those slumps later in the day. So dump those high sugar junk foods and reach for the following foods and get that boost you need.
Any fresh fruit, especially with skins or seeds like peaches, apples, pears, oranges, and strawberries, is a great source of vitamins and fiber. In the summer you can choose a peach and get plenty of dietary fiber, niacin (vitamin B3), potassium, beta carotene and vitamin A, plus high amounts of vitamin C. Niacin is important for providing energy for cell tissue growth. Along with regulating fluid balance, potassium helps maintain the electrical stability of the cells of your heart and nervous system and is important for cell and muscle growth. Vitamin B12 plays a role in red blood cell formation, nerve function, and metabolizing protein and fat.

Dried Apricots and Almonds combination provides a high amount of vitamin A, iron protein and dietary fiber. Both foods are low in cholesterol and sodium, and apricots are a great source of potassium, which is important in regulating your body's fluid balance. The vitamin A in apricots contributes to healthy vision, bone growth, and reproduction, and helps fight infection.

Raisins are a healthy, low-fat, low-cholesterol, and low-sodium snack with significant amounts of potassium, phosphorus, copper, and iron, and when mixed with low-fat yogurt, you also get riboflavin (vitamin B2) and vitamin B12, as well as a high amount of calcium, which is needed not only for strong bones and teeth but also plays a key role in the normal functioning of the heart and other muscles.

Baby carrots and sesame sticks are a tasty treat that will provide significant amounts of beta carotene, vitamin A, vitamin C, folate, vitamin B6, iron, potassium, copper, and fiber. Beta carotene helps protect against diseases like heart disease and some cancers.
Vitamin A is important for healthy skin, for better night vision, and to fight infection and respiratory ailments. Folate, or vitamin B9, is essential to human life, helping to form red blood cells and break down proteins, and playing a key role in cell growth and division.

Peanut butter on some whole grain crackers is an excellent source of protein, iron, niacin, and fiber. Peanut butter on celery is a classic snack, has great staying power, and the celery is stuffed with numerous vitamins, minerals, and is high in fiber. Low-fat string cheese is a good quick source of protein and calcium. They come in easy-to-carry individual servings and you can add a piece of fresh fruit for extra fiber.

Depression Treatment With Superfoods

We’ve all had the blues once in while. But when they happen on a more frequent basis, it becomes cause for concern. But there are ways to adjust your diet to help stabilize your mood. It’s imperative to eat meals at regular intervals in order to keep your serotonin levels in check, a chemical in the brain that has a calming effect. Good nutrition is your best defense for managing depression.

Carbohydrates are linked to serotonin production and lack of carbohydrates may cause changes in your mood. Here are more food ideas to help you combat depression and kick those blues.

Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, salmon and mackerel are always a great choice for dinner. Omega-3 fatty acids also help prevent heart disease and stroke and may help prevent some cancers. Plus, salmon contains selenium, an important antioxidant mineral. Be sure to choose wild salmon at the grocery store or local fish market, since it contains more omegas than farmed, or Atlantic, salmon.

A recent study indicated that people who suffer from depression also have lower levels of the antioxidant vitamin E. So, though oil is high in fat and should be consumed in strict moderation, canola oil is rich in vitamin E. It’s a healthier alternative for sautéing foods and vegetables.

Dark green vegetables like spinach and peas are high in folate, a key player in the production of serotonin. They’re also an excellent source of vitamin C and fiber. Fresh is always the best option, as canned versions tend to have lower nutritional value. Legumes are also high in folate and protein and low in fat, and are an excellent option for those who are vegetarian or meat-restricted diets.

Chickpeas are rich in fiber, iron, and vitamin E. For a simple snack, combine a can of drained and rinsed chickpeas with some minced garlic, fresh lemon juice, and olive or canola oil in your blender or food processor. Add salt, pepper and other spices as you wish. The resulting hummus makes a healthy and hearty vegetable dip.

Chicken and turkey are both rich in vitamin B6, which plays a role in serotonin production in the body. They are both a good source of selenium and other vitamins and minerals, too.

And please, if you’ve been dealing with the symptoms of depression for a while, please contact your doctor to discuss available treatment options and medication that may be available to you.

Anti Aging Skin Care

Talking of anti aging skin care products, the first thing that comes to mind is vitamin C based anti aging skin care products. These products work by enabling the synthesis of collagen (a structural protein that is found in skin). This category of anti aging skin care products is related to anti-oxidants. Anti aging skin care products that are based on vitamin C are, however, posed with the danger of getting oxidised themselves (as they come into contact with air during their usage). So some anti aging skin care products are based on the derivatives of vitamin C, which are more stable and less expensive. However, the effectiveness of such anti aging skin care is not as much as it is for vitamin C based ant aging skin care products.

Besides vitamin C, vitamin E and lipoic acid are anti-oxidants too. Vitamin E is a fat-soluble anti-oxidant that is found in human blood and helps in building resistance against infection. Vitamin E is also known to inhibit cancer. Liponic acid is known to combat the signs of aging very effectively by reversing the skin damage caused by the aging process.

Phytochemicals form the other category of anti aging skin care products. Phytochemical are special chemicals that are extracted from plants. There are a variety of phytochemicals that are in use today. Phytochemicals prevent occurrence of cancer of certain types; these include prostate cancer, breast cancer and colon cancer. That is why they find their place in anti aging skin care products.

Some B-vitamins like B5, B6 and B12 are also in use for anti aging skin care products.

The field of anti aging skin care products is vast and needs a lot of research. Though the currently available products are effective, they still have challenges to combat. Hopefully, these challenges will get resolved in due course and help get better and cheaper anti aging skin care products.

However, anti aging skin care products should be used only as a supplement to the natural ways of skin and body care. So, drinking a lot of water, getting a good night sleep, exercising regularly, maintaining healthy eating habits and keeping stress at bay are essential means of delaying the aging process. No anti aging skin care product can replace them really.

Cardio Training and Your Health

In a long-term study of the health of the people of in the United States, the U.S. Public Health Service documented the chances of developing heart disease among various groups in the population. Long before the any symptoms appeared, epidemiological research could identify high-risk groups.

Among the highest risk factors are male sex, age over 35, cigarette smoking, high blood pressure, high levels of certain blood fats, and a family history of cardiovascular disorders.

Other researchers have added to this list another risk factor: the compulsive, hard-driving, highly anxious personality. The greater the number of severity, the greater the person’s overall risk.

These threats to the heart can be divided into two main categories: those beyond individual control, such as age, sex, and heredity, and those that can be controlled, avoided, or even eliminated. Among those in the second category are what cardiologists call “the triple threat.” These are the high blood pressure, cigarette smoking, and high cholesterol levels in the blood.

If you smoke a pack of cigarettes a day, your risk of having a heart attack is twice that of a nonsmoker. If you smoke, have hypertension, and eat a diet high in fats without any exercise at all, your risk is five times greater than normal.

The Healthy Heart

If these risk factors endanger the heart’s health, what enhances its well-being and improves its odds of working long and well?

Obviously, quitting cigarettes and eating a low-fat diet will help. The next best thing you can do for your heart’s sake is to give it what it needs: regular exercise or a complete cardio interval training.

The heart is a muscle, or, more accurately, a group or “package” of muscles, similar in many ways to the muscles of the arms and legs. And just as exercise strengthens and improves limb muscles, it enhances the health of the heart muscles as well.

Since World War II, several large-scale statistical studies have evaluated the relationship between physical activity and cardiovascular disease. One well-known survey compared 31,000 drivers and conductors of some bus companies. The more sedentary drivers had a significantly higher rate of heart disease than the conductors, who walked around the buses and climbed stairs to the upper level.

The why and how behind these statistics were bet explained by classic experiments with dogs whose coronary arteries were surgically narrowed to resemble those of humans with arteriosclerosis. Dogs who were exercised were had much better blood flow than those kept inactive.

The exercise seemed to stimulate the development of new connections between the impaired and the nearly normal blood vessels, so exercised dogs had a better blood supply to all the muscle tissue of the heart. The human heart reacts in the same way to provide blood to the portion that was damaged by the heart attack.

To enable the damaged heart muscle to heal, the heart relies on new small blood vessels for what is called collateral circulation. These new branches on the arterial tress can develop long before a heart attack — and can prevent a heart attack if the new network takes on enough of the function of the narrowed vessels.

With all these facts, it is now boiled down to a single question: What should be done in order to prevent such dilemmas?

Some studies showed that moderate exercise several times a week is more effective in building up these auxiliary pathways than extremely vigorous exercise done twice often.

The general rule is that exercise helps reduce the risk of harm to the heart. Some researches further attested the link between exercise and healthy heart based from the findings that the non-exercisers had a 49% greater risk of heart attack than the other people included in the study. The study attributed a third of that risk to sedentary lifestyle alone.

Hence, with employing the cardio interval training, you can absolutely expect positive results not only on areas that concerns your cardiovascular system but on the overall status of your health as well.

This particular activity that is definitely good for the heart is a cycle of “repeated segments” that is of intense nature. In this process, there is an interchange periods of recuperation. It can both be comprehensive activity and moderate motion.

Consequently, the benefits of merely engaging into this kind of activity can bring you more results that you have ever expected. These are:

1. The threats of heart attack are lessened, if not eliminated

2. Enhanced heart task

3. Increase metabolism, increase the chance of burning calories, therefore, assist you in losing weight

4. Improves lung capacity

5. Helps lessen or eliminate the cases of stress

Indeed, cardio interval training is the modern way of creating a healthy, happy heart and body.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Tips For Dieters During the Holidays

The Holiday Season is one in which we all indulge ourselves in over-abundance. Especially when it comes to food. Food has become a central part of our get togethers and parties around the holidays, so it is important that we remember to make smart food choices. And this is something that is almost always easier said than done when you see some of the decadant food choices made available, made with love, by your friends and family.

In most cases, the majority of the party-going people, won't be concerned with watching their weight, so they are less inclined to bring healthier versions of their best recipes. Then it becomes our own burden to stick with our diets or to watch what we eat as the food choices are always so tempting!

The following 15 holiday eating tips are here to help you when going to holiday parties to better watch your weight by giving you some great ideas.

1. Stop Eating When You Feel Full. This is something most people won't,or don't, do. Especially those that are in the 'clean plate' club and don't like to leave extra or left over food on their plates. Honestly, there is absolutely no shame in leaving that extra portion of food on your plate. When your tummy feels full, just push yourself away from the table and say "No More For Me Thanks!".

2. Take A Few Extra or Longer Walks. Walking is a terrific form of exercise, and can be a great cardiovascular work out in colder temperatures. Especially when there is a nice layer of snow on the ground. Next time you go to let your dog out to do their bathroom 'business', why not slip on your coat and shoes, grab their leash and take them for a walk around the block, or down a few blocks. Fido will love you for it and you will be making yourself a healthier 'you' by doing it as well.

3. Don't Count Calories Incessantly. This is unnecessary and will drive your loved ones crazy, and yourself too. Let's face it, there's enough stressors around the Holidays to worry about. Gaining an extra few pounds should be the least of your troubles! The best thing you can do if you are already dieting is to watch not what you eat, but how much of it you are eating instead of trying to keep track of your caloric intake. Unless of course you are on a strict diet and need to avoid things that contain higher carbohydrates, sugars, etc. In this case, you would obviously want to avoid eating things like potatoes, breads, cookies, candies, cakes, etc.

4. Use Reduced Fat, Sugar Substitutes, or Fat Free Ingredients in Your Recipes. Lots of people complain that fat-free or reduced fat ingredients change the flavor of their favorite recipes, and not in a good way. But, in all reality, there is barely a hint of difference in flavor. In fact, if one did not have the knowledge that normal ingredients such as sour cream had been replaced with a fat-free or reduced fat substitute, you would never hear a peep about the taste. When replacing sugar such as pure cane sugar with a substitute such as Splenda, Equal, or the like, you may notice a taste difference. So, in this case, if you have picky family members, simply make two versions of the same dessert or snacks and let your family opt for their own choice.

5. Eat One Big Meal Instead Of Continuous Snacking Or Smaller Meals. Opinions will vary on this one, but whether you're eating a bigger meal once, or several smaller meals throughout the day, the amount of food you are taking in is just about the same at any rate. The difference in eating a big meal once is that you will be completely full, or have the full 'feeling' so you won't be hungry as much. And DO NOT think you can have your 3 square meals a day and then add a couple of more to the mix. That will most definitely pack on the unwanted pounds. Remember to always eat in moderation and keep in mind the full feeling. When you are getting full, STOP EATING!

6. Know Your Eating Boundaries And Don't Cross Them. This tip is especially important if you are already dieting or trying to lose weight. You know better than Aunt Betty what you can eat. Even though her home-made pound cake might taste wonderful, you may want to not opt for seconds if you are on a strict diet. Many people like to splurg around the holiday season, but it's all a matter of will power really. If you just can't help yourself and must have some of Uncle Fred's ambrosia salad, then take a smaller than normal portion of it.

7. Go For The Healthy Food Choices. Almost every family unit has at least one 'health nut' within its midst. If there are healthy food choices available, then eat more of the plain fruits and vegetables instead of the pies cakes and cookies in the holiday 'spread'. Remember too that extra dips can help pack on the pounds. Don't be afraid to ask what the dips are made from so you can make a more informed judgment on whether or not you can enjoy them. Also, you can always bring healthier food dips for fruits and veggies with you such as yogurt or reduced calorie veggie dips that are sold at most major grocery stores before the big get-together.

8. Eat In Moderation With Smaller Portions. As discussed earlier, take smaller portions of all those calorie packed goodies. This way, you can still partake of all the wonderful eats without packing on all the extra pounds that go along with all those goodies. And remember too to balance out the bad foods, or those that are packed with sugars and carbohydrates, with good foods such as plain fruits and vegetables.

9. Drink In Moderation. No, this is not an advertisement for drinking and driving, even though you should always have a designated driver if you plan on drinking more than the legal limit of course, or anything at all due to cold, icy, roads. Rather, many holiday drinks are packed with extra sugars, so watch how much of the good old egg nog you drink. This goes for either alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. Water is always a great choice, or non-sweetened tea or coffee. There too, is also diet soda pop if you are a soda drinker.

10. Substitute Whole Grains In Lieu of Higher Carbohydrate Filled Grains. Try to steer clear of white breads, sugary cakes, potatoes, cookies, or anything else that you believe to have a high carbohydrate count. These can put a lot of weight on you quickly and is why many diets try to steer clear of these carb laden monoliths. Go for the whole wheat, multi-grain, sugar substitute holiday food choices. Sure, it's not the same as loading up on all the 'bad-for-you' foods, but you'll be glad you did when January rolls around.

11. No Eating After 7p.m. This can be extremely difficult to do. Especially when most holiday get togethers happen after 7 o'clock! If this is the case, then you should eat before you go to the holiday bash. Most foods are not properly burned off if eaten after 7 o'clock p.m. So, it's best if you eat long before this time rolls around. However, you can eat something healthy such as fruits or vegetables minus the fatty dips if you really need to snack on something.

12. Drink More Liquids Than Eating. Drinking more liquids will fool your body into believing it is full. Therefore, you can drink lots of water, unsweetened tea or coffee, diet sodas, low calorie fruit smoothies or soft drinks(non-carbonated), etc. without feeling the guilt of over eating. Stay away from higher sweetened drinks as this will defeat the purpose of watching your weight.

13. Eat Something Before You Go Grocery Shopping. Actually, you should eat something before you do any out of the house, or in house for that matter, activity that will burn calories. But, the main reason for going grocery shopping on a full stomach is that you will be less inclined to purchase all those fattening junk foods because you are not hungry so you aren't tempted by those types of food choices. You will be able to stay on track and only purchase those things you need from the grocery store instead of packing your cart with weight packing foods!

14. Plan An Out-Door Activity. Depending on the region you live it, whether the weather is warmer or colder, plan on doing something outdoors. This can be something you do by yourself, with family, or friends that doesn't involve any eating. Things like cutting down your own Christmas Tree, shopping for gifts, either last minute or not, walking through the park(you may want to do this with someone or a group of someones for safety reasons), going sledding, skiing, skating, playing some backyard football, collecting pine cones and creating some simple bird feeders with bird seed and peanut butter, and any other activities you can think up. Try to do one thing each week to replace a day of exercise or work out that you would normally do to keep things interesting and everyone in the holiday spirit!

15. No Healthy Food Choices? Bring Some! Cutting up vegetables or fruits to create a holiday health tray can be a nice 'change of pace' for your friends or family. Why not try brining some healthy holiday cheer at your next get together. Chances are, someone else in your extended friends or family network are trying to watch their wastes too and would appreciate having a healthier-than-normal food choice. Even if that isn't the case, you are still saving yourself tons of work out time later once all those extra caloric fatty foods are attaching themselves to your waistline.

Of course there are always more things you can do to watch your weight year round. Try incorporating some of those things during the holidays as well since we all tend to eat a bit more and make less than savory choices to keep ourselves healthy, fit, and trim. Take the ideas in the tips above and fit them in to your lifestyle by changing them up a bit. Remember being healthy is a lifestyle in and of itself and should be practiced year round. It's especially important not to slack off around the holiday season when most of the unhealthy food choices are abundant.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Eating Healthy While On Vacation

It can be very tempting to abandon your good sense
of healthy eating on vacation. Although you may
strive for healthy eating, it's easy to drift off
and grab an ice cream cone here and there. There
are however, ways to watch what you eat on

It's easier than ever these days to request a low
fat or vegetarian meal on airplane flights. If
you choose to instead drive to your destination,
the quest to find healthy food can get a bit more

Rather than simply relying on greasy foods for
nutrition, pack some nutritious foods in a cooler
full of ice packs. Fruits and vegetables, crackers,
yogurt, and sandwiches are all great to have with
you on the road.

Once you arrive at your hotel, you should do
yourself a favor and turn the minibar key down - as
this helps to avoid the temptation. If your hotel
offers a continental breakfast, stick to fruits,
cereals, and proteins. If your hotel has a stove
or microwave, consider bringing your own healthy
food with you.

If you simply must eat out, do so only when you
are hungry. Restaurants will usually serve large
portions, so be careful. If you do go a bit over
on a meal, simply cut back on the next.

If you find it hard to fit in three square meals
a day, try to fit in six smaller meals or snacks,
as your body needs fuel every four hours or so.
When you eat out, avoid appetizers. Whatever you
do, do not miss any meals.

When it's possible, you should avoid eating large
meals at night. When your body gets ready for
sleep and slows down, it also burns calories at a
much slower pace. Never eat bread before bed, and
make sure to avoid the butter. Choose fish or
poultry for your meal instead, and include
vegetables as a side dish.

Even though it may sound hard, eating healthy on
vacation isn't really that difficult. All you have
to do is use a little will power, and pass up
foods that you know aren't good for you. This
way, you'll enjoy healthy eating and a healthy
lifestyle wherever you go.

The next time you go on a vacation, always remember
that eating healthy is a way of life. You can
afford to get something you crave, although you
shouldn't make a habit of it. One ice cream
cone or a pizza isn't going to matter - as long as
you know when to stop.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Health Tips For Women

Here are some tips for women to stay fit and healthy:

Staying fit and healthy starts with a balanced diet. Know and monitor the right weight for your age. Consult your doctor to learn what food you should avoid and follow your eating discipline routines. If you are trying to lose some weight, foods with high calories should be omitted from your meals. Food with high fiber and low fat should be included a priority in your grocery list instead of red meat, sugars and fats.

Drink plenty of water. Drinking at least eight glasses of water everyday. This cleanses the body from impurities. It is also advised for lactating women to increase water intake to keep the body hydrated.

Take Vitamins and Supplements. Do not forget your Calcium supplement. Sufficient Calcium intake is beneficial for women of all ages. This has been proven to prevent having cramps and Pre-Menstrual Period (PMS) Symptoms. It also prevents Osteoporosis especially for menopausal women. Vitamin E boosts strong immune system. Women who undergo menopausal period should take Vitamin E-400 as it stops night sweats and hot flashes. Also, Vitamin E is said to be best in avoiding wrinkles when aging.

Quit smoking. If you are smoking, stop. It is also a big “NO” for pregnant women, as this will affect the health of the baby. Pregnant women who smoke may pass the harmful content of cigarettes to babies through the bloodstream. Recent studies have shown that women smokers are more prone to diseases than men smokers. Women who smoke have a high risk of getting breast cancer. Also limit your alcohol intake.

Incorporate exercises in your daily routine. Take a walk after work, use stairs instead of elevator or play with your kids when you are at home. Home exercises are also effective especially when you do not have time to go to the gym and would like to lose some weight. Yoga and Pilates are only a few of the many effective exercises you can do at home. Exercises help in limiting the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Avoid stress. Many women are prone to too much stress. Stress has been known as cause to many sicknesses. As much as possible take time to relax. Read a good book, hang out with friends and engage into sports. Pamper yourself by going to parlors or you can do some shopping. And do not forget to get enough sleep to revive your energy.

Use sunscreen to protect your skin from the harmful rays of the sun. Wear hats when under the sun to protect your skin. Too much sun is bad for your skin. The skin is prone to cancer when exposed to too much sunlight. It also speeds up the aging of skin cells, which causes wrinkles to women.

Make sure to visit your dentist to keep that beautiful smile. Always have it cleaned to prevent cavities and bad breath.

Visit your Gynecologist. Women who are eighteen and above should have their Physical Examination annually especially for the Pap Smear test. Women who are forty and up should have their mammograms and the Breast self-exam is encouraged once puberty has been reached and should be a habit as they mature

Safe sex is strongly recommended. Use condoms to prevent sexually transmitted diseases.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Dry Skin Care Tips

Dry skin cannot be ignored. Dry skin leads to cracking of the upper layer of skin and gives it a real bad appearance. The main causes of dry skin include: dry climate, hormonal changes, too much exfoliation and treatment of other skin disorders. Moreover, dryness could be the inherent nature of one’s skin. Whatever be the cause, ‘dry skin care’ is very important (but not very difficult).

‘Dry skin care’ starts with moisturisers, the most effective remedy for dry skin. Generally moisturisers are classified under 2 categories based on the way they provide ‘dry skin care’.

The first category includes moisturisers that provide ‘dry skin care’ just by preserving the moisture within the skin e.g. Vaseline. These moisturisers are relatively inexpensive and are readily available (even at grocery shops).

The second category includes moisturisers that work by drawing moisture from the environment and supplying it to the skin. This is a very effective way of ‘dry skin care’ in humid conditions. The moisturisers that provide ‘dry skin care’ in this way are also called humectants. For proper dry skin care, you must use a non-greasy type of moisturiser, as far as possible. Humectants fall in this category. The ingredients of humectants include propylene glycol, urea, glycerine, hyaluronic acid etc

‘Dry skin care’ is not about just using moisturisers but also using them properly. The best ‘dry skin care procedure’ is to cleanse the skin before the application of moisturiser. You can make your ‘dry skin care’ even more effective by applying the moisturiser while the skin is still damp (after cleansing). Also, make sure that you use soap-free products (especially on your face, neck and arms). Exfoliation does help in dry skin care, by removing the dead skin cells. However, don’t exfoliate too hard. Your dry skin care procedures/products should also take care of sun protection. Avoid too much and too direct exposure to sun (simply by using an umbrella/hat etc). Use a good sunscreen lotion before going out. A lot of moisturisers provide sun protection too, along with dry skin care.

You also have natural products for ‘dry skin care’ i.e. products that provide ‘dry skin care’ in a natural way (without the use of synthetic chemicals). These dry skin care products supply lipid enhancements to the skin, hence enabling moisture retention within the skin. Another, important thing for ‘dry skin care’ is the temperature of water you use for shower or for washing your face – Use warm water; too hot or too cold water can cause dryness too.

‘Dry skin care’ is also about being gentle with your skin. You should avoid harsh detergents and alcohol based cleansers. Also, after a face wash, do not rub your towel on your face, just pat gently to soak the water off.

On the whole, dry skin care is really simple for anyone who takes that seriously.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Hypertension and Exercise

It seems as though many Americans are living a life that leads to high blood pressure or hypertension. As people age, the situation gets worse. Nearly half of all older Americans have hypertension. This disease makes people five times more prone to strokes, three times more likely to have a heart attack, and two to three times more likely to experience a heart failure.

The problem with this disease is that nearly one third of the folks who have hypertension do not know it because they never feel any direct pain. But overtime the force of that pressure damages the inside surface of your blood vessels.

However, according to experts, hypertension is not predestined. Reducing salt intake, adopting a desirable dietary pattern losing weight and exercising can all help prevent hypertension.

Obviously, quitting bad habits and eating a low fat diet will help, but the most significant part that you can do is to exercise. And just as exercise strengthens and improves limb muscles, it also enhances the health of the heart muscles.

Heart and Exercise

The exercise stimulates the development of new connections between the impaired and the nearly normal blood vessels, so people who exercise had a better blood supply to all the muscle tissue of the heart.

The human heart basically, supply blood to an area of the heart damaged in a “myocardial infarction.” A heart attack is a condition, in which, the myocardium or the heart muscle does not get enough oxygen and other nutrients and so it begins to die.

For this reason and after a series of careful considerations, some researchers have observed that exercise can stimulate the development of these life saving detours in the heart. One study further showed that moderate exercise several times a week is more effective in building up these auxiliary pathways than extremely vigorous exercise done twice as often.

Such information has led some people to think of exercise as a panacea for heart disorders, a fail-safe protection against hypertension or death. That is not so. Even marathon runners that have suffered hypertension, and exercise cannot overcome combination of other risk factor.

What Causes Hypertension?

Sometimes abnormalities of the kidney are responsible. There is also a study wherein the researchers identified more common contributing factors such as heredity, obesity, and lack of physical activity. And so, what can be done to lower blood pressure and avoid the risk of developing hypertension? Again, exercise seems to be just what the doctor might order.

If you think that is what he will do, then, try to contemplate on this list and find some ways how you can incorporate these things into your lifestyle and start to live a life free from the possibilities of developing hypertension. But before you start following the systematic instructions, it would be better to review them first before getting into action.

1. See your doctor
Check with your doctor before beginning an exercise program. If you make any significant changes in your level of physical activity — particularly if those changes could make large and sudden demands on your circulatory system — check with your doctors again.

2. Take it slow

Start at a low, comfortable level of exertion and progress gradually. The program is designed in two stages to allow for a progressive increase in activity.

3. Know your limit

Determine your safety limit for exertion. Use some clues such as sleep problems or fatigue the day after a workout to check on whether you are overdoing it. Once identified, stay within it. Over-exercising is both dangerous and unnecessary.

4. Exercise regularly

You need to work out a minimum of three times a week and a maximum of five times a week to get the most benefit. Once you are in peak condition, a single workout a week can maintain the muscular benefits. However, cardiovascular fitness requires more frequent activity.

5. Exercise at a rate within your capacity

The optimum benefits for older exercisers are produced by exercise at 40% to 60% of capacity.

Indeed, weight loss through exercise is an excellent starting point if you wan tot prevent hypertension. Experts say that being overweight is linked to an increased risk of developing hypertension, and losing weight decreases the risk.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Why Vitamins Contribute To Healthy Aging

Many people do not realize what vitamins can do for them. Vitamins are great for those who need them. On the other hand, if you have sufficient vitamins, then you will not need regimens of vitamins. Building vitamins in your system, which has too much already, or sufficient nutrients can cause harm. Vitamins will make you look younger and feel younger as well as make you feel good about yourself, providing you need regimens suited for your system.

How do I learn what vitamins are good for me?
We get natural vitamins in the foods we eat. Some times, you do not get the right amount so you have to take vitamins, which come in many ways. You can get them in a pill form, liquid, powder, etc. If the vitamins you choose do not work for you, your doctor can give you a shot. You can get almost all the vitamins you may need at local drug stores. You will find vitamins at supermarkets, department stores and so on. If you cannot determine which vitamins are right for you, check with your doctor. He may have some recommendations. In fact, you should visit your family doctor first and ask him/her, which vitamins may be suitable for your body type.

How vitamins help you:
Taking vitamins will help you to relieve stress. Vitamins will help control your weight, and help keep you from getting sick with the common cold and the flu. There are many vitamins to help you out. You can check out at your local pharmacy many different kinds. You pharmacist is your best friend as well as your doctor. He/she may be able to help you find out which vitamins are best suited for your body type.

What kinds of vitamins should I consider and for what purpose?
You have a wide array of vitamins to choose from, including B1, B12, B6, E, D, K, A, and so on. B1 is designed to help your heart function in order. The vitamin will assist your central nervous system as well, helping you to have a better attitude in life. B1 will give you energy, since it is known to swap blood sugar, transferring it to energy. B1 promotes a healthy mucous membrane, and will promote the muscular and cardio functions.

How to decide if you need vitamins:
Some things that you may feel if you are low on vitamins are fatigue. You may feel muscle tenderness, or experience insomnia. Insomnia can benefit from Melatonin supplements. You can get natural vitamins from corn breads, nuts, oatmeal, cereal, wheat and so on. Eat plenty of veggies and fruits also to get the vitamins you need.

If you have colds, you can benefit from Vitamin C. If you are searching for anti-aging vitamins consider E, since According to experts, Vitamin E is responsible for preserving oxygen in the blood, reduce more than 40% of the oxygen amount the heart needs as well. Vitamin E also has been linked to influential anti-coagulants. Some experts believe the vitamin will slow blood clotting by dilating the blood vessels. If you searching for the vitamin to help you stay young and healthy, then Vitamin E that contains 200 units is for you.

According to German experts Wolf and Luczak Vitamin E is a stabilizer for youth and strong blood. If this is true, then dying cells will be replaced quickly by new cells. Dying cells is responsible for many diseases, including cancer, AIDS, HIV, leukemia and so on. In fact, T-Cells that deteriorate is responsible for AIDS, certain types of cancers, herpes simplex, and so on.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Type 2 Diabetes and Exercise

One of the most undemanding and the most workable ways to knock over blood sugar amount, eliminate the dangers of “cardiovascular disease,” and perk up health and welfare in general is exercise.

In spite of that, in today’s inactive world where almost every indispensable job can be carried out online, from the ergonomic chair in front of a computer, or with a streaming line of messages from a fax machine, exercising can be a hard argument to win over.

The Weight of Exercise

Everyone should exercise, yet the health experts tells us that only 30% of the United States population gets the recommended thirty minutes of daily physical activity, and 25% are not active at all. In fact, inactivity is thought to be one of the key reasons for the surge of type 2 diabetes in the U.S., because inactivity and obesity promote insulin resistance.

The good news is that it is never too late to get moving, and exercise is one of the easiest ways to start controlling your diabetes. For people with type 2 diabetes in particular, exercise can improve insulin sensitivity, lower the risk of heart disease, and promote weight loss.

Type 2 Diabetes

Diabetes is on the rise. The number of people diagnosed with diabetes every year increased by 48% between 1980 and 1994. Nearly all the new cases are Type 2 Diabetes, or adult-onset, the kind that moves in around middle age. Symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes include increased thirst, appetite, and need to urinate; feeling tired, edgy, or sick to the stomach; blurred vision; tingling or loss of feeling in the hands.

The causes of type 2 diabetes are complex and not completely understood, although research is uncovering new clues at a rapid pace.

However, it has already been proven that one of the reasons for the boom in type 2 diabetes is the widening of waistbands and the trend toward a more deskbound and inactive lifestyle in the United States and other developed countries. In America, the shift has been striking; in the 1990s alone, obesity increased by 61% and diagnosed diabetes by 49%.

For this reason, health experts encourage those who already have type 2 diabetes to start employing the wonders that exercise can do for them. Without exercise, people have the tendency to become obese. Once they are obese, they have bigger chances of accumulating type 2 diabetes.

Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reports that over 80% of people with type 2 diabetes are clinically overweight. Therefore, it is high time that people, whether inflicted with type 2 diabetes or not, should start doing those jumping and stretching activities.

Getting Started

The first order of business with any exercise plan, especially if you are a “dyed-in-the-wool” sluggish, is to consult with your health care provider. If you have cardiac risk factors, the health care provider may want to perform a stress test to establish a safe level of exercise for you.

Certain diabetic complications will also dictate what type of exercise program you can take on. Activities like weightlifting, jogging, or high-impact aerobics can possibly pose a risk for people with diabetic retinopathy due to the risk for further blood vessel damage and possible retinal detachment.

If you are already active in sports or work out regularly, it will still benefit you to discuss your regular routine with your doctor. If you are taking insulin, you may need to take special precautions to prevent hypoglycemia during your workout.

Start Slow

For those who have type 2 diabetes, your exercise routine can be as simple as a brisk nightly neighborhood walk. If you have not been very active before now, start slowly and work your way up. Walk the dog or get out in the yard and rake. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Park in the back of the lot and walk. Every little bit does work, in fact, it really helps a lot.

As little as 15 to 30 minutes of daily, heart-pumping exercise can make a big difference in your blood glucose control and your risk of developing diabetic complications. One of the easiest and least expensive ways of getting moving is to start a walking program. All you need is a good pair of well-fitting, supportive shoes and a direction to head in.

Indeed, you do not have to waste too many expenses on costly “health club memberships,” or the most up-to-date health device to start pumping those fats out. What you need is the willingness and the determination to start exercising to a healthier, type 2 diabetes-free life.

The results would be the sweetest rewards from the effort that you have exerted.

Arthritis and Exercising

Your bones hang out in a lot of joints. Knee joints. Hip joints. The joints in your fingers and the joints in your toes.

Wherever bones meet, there is also cartilage, a rubbery, protective layer that ensures your joints bend smoothly and painlessly. But even cartilage cannot do this tremendous job alone. A thin membrane called the “synovium” provides fluid that lubricates the moving parts of the joint. When the cartilage wears out of the synovium becomes inflamed, the result is generally a case of “osteoarthritis” or “rheumatoid arthritis.”

In osteoarthritis, the cartilage can be eroded so much that bone does rub on bone. Thos type of arthritis develops gradually over a lifetime as a simple result of the wear and tear placed on your joints over the years. Very few people escape some degree of osteoarthritis, though the severity varies a great deal.

As a matter of fact, if you are over the age of 50, you are likely to have at least one joint affected by osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis affects men and women equally and is by far the most common type of arthritis, with almost 16 million Americans in the list.

In rheumatoid arthritis, damage to the synovium is at the source of trouble. Doctors and researchers are not absolutely sure what causes it, but most think that rheumatoid arthritis is a disease in which the immune system actually attacks certain tissues in the body, including those that connect the joints and the synovium.

Rheumatoid arthritis begins with swollen, red, stiff, and painful joints, but it may progress until scar tissue forms in the joint or, in extreme cases, until the bones actually fuse together. Almost 75% of the 2 million people with rheumatoid arthritis in the United States are women. The disease can hit as early as teen years.

Exercising Your Prevention Options

Investing a little time in developing a good weight-bearing low-impact exercise and stretching plan can add up to great results when it comes to staving off arthritis pain. Strong muscles help protect the joints from wear and tear, and the movement keeps joints flexible.

That is why the quest for fitness is at hand, even if you are 50 years and over. However, most Americans over 50 are still right where they always were sitting back and watching others jog by. Most of them contend that that is just for people who have been athletic all their life, or some say exercise is for young people and engaging into exercise will do them more harm than good.

There are still some that insist on excusing their selves in exercise routines because they do not just have time or they have less energy than ever before. These are all lame excuses. Hence, it is time to start to get rid of those pains. Start exercising.

Consequently, preventing arthritis is not an exact science, but physicians have discovered a few ways to lower your risk. Here is how:

1. Do not weight around

The single most important measure anyone can take to prevent osteoarthritis of the knee is to lose weight if they are overweight. Extra weight puts extra stress on your knees. If you are 10 pounds overweight, for example, you put 60 pounds per square inch of extra pressure on your knees every time you take a step. That extra pressure can slowly but surely erode the cartilage in your knees, leading to arthritis.

A study has clearly supported the theory that weight loss weighs in on the side of prevention. In the study, overweight women who lost 11 pounds or more over a 10-year period decreased their risk of developing osteoarthritis of the knee by 50%.

2. Stretch those muscles

Any kind of stretching is good as long as you do not bounce, which can lead to a muscle pull. This is according to some of the professors of clinical medicine in New York City.

Try to hold a slow, steady stretch for 15 to 20 seconds, then relax and repeat. It is best to flex up by stretching before any exercise, especially running and walking. But it is also a good idea to stretch each day. Ask your doctor to teach you stretches that focus on potential arthritis trouble spots, such as the knees or the lower back.

3. Walking is always the best exercise

Take a good long walk at least three times a week or participate in a step-aerobics or low-impact exercise routine maximum results. There is no proof that running is bad for the joints, but remember, it may aggravate an injury if you already have one. Just remember to check with your doctor before starting a new exercise program.

The bottom line is that of all the healthful habits, exercise is the most important. This is because people are designed to be active. Hence, it is really important for people to exercise in order to stay healthy and keep those joints free from wear and tear.

Just keep in mind that the unexercised body, even if free from the symptoms of illness or problems like arthritis, is not at its full potential. Hence, start exercising right now!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Beat Stress With Healthy Diet

When we get too busy or stressed, we all tend
to make poor food choices that will actually
increase stress and cause other problems. To get
the most of your healthy eating and avoid stress,
follow these simple tips.

Always eat breakfast
Even though you may think you aren't hungry,
you need to eat something. Skipping breakfast
makes it harder to maintain the proper blood and
sugar levels during the day, so you should always
eat something.

Carry a snack
Keeping some protein rich snacks in your car,
office, or pocket book will help you avoid blood
sugar level dips, the accompanying mood swings, and
the fatigue. Trail mix, granola bars, and energy
bars all have the nutrients you need.

Healthy munchies
If you like to munch when you're stressed out,
you can replace chips or other non healthy foods
with carrot sticks, celery sticks, or even
sunflower seeds.

Bring your lunch
Although a lot of people prefer to eat fast food
for lunch, you can save a lot of money and actually
eat healthier if you take a few minutes and pack
a lunch at home. Even if you only do this a few
times a week, you'll see a much better improvement
over eating out.

Stock your home
As important as it is to get the bad food out of
your house, it's even more important to get the good
food in! The best way to do this is to plan a menu
of healthy meals at snacks at the beginning of the
week, list the ingedients you need, then go shop
for it. This way, you'll know what you want when
you need it and you won't have to stress over what
to eat.

Eating Correctly for a Healthy Heart

Bad cholesterol or a bad diet is something we all
experience at some point in time. It's impossible
to eat healthy our whole lives, even though we may
try hard to do it. Eating healthy for your heart
is something everyone should try to do, especially
when it comes to restoring health and reducing
heart attacks.

Your heart and food
We know these things for sure - a diet high in
saturated fats will help raise your cholesterol,
which is a risk factor for heart disease. People
that are obese are more prone to heart disease. A
diet high in sodium may elevate your blood pressure,
leading to inflammation and even heart disease.

To help prevent heart disease and improve your health,
put the tips below to good use.

Eat plenty of fish
Herring, sardines, and salmon are all excellent sources
of Omega 3 essential fatty acids. Other fish are great
to, although Omega 3 may help to get your cholesterol
down to a healthier level.

Choosing healthy fats and oils
Saturated fat will increase the risk of heart disease.
It's found in meat, butter, and even coconut oil. You
should avoid them until your cholesterol levels are
down and you are at a healthy weight. Even those
that love red meats can enjoy seafood and nuts for
their main sources of protein.

Monounsaturated fats such as olive oils will help
you to protect your heart. Olive oil is an ideal
choice for cooking, dressing, or even as a dipping

Plenty of fiber
Fiber can help you control your cholesterol. You
can find fiber in whole grain products to help
control sugar absorption as well, which will help
you keep your digestive system healthy.

Choosing carbohydrates
Eating for your heart involves staying away from
sugary foods such as candy, cookies, cakes, and
pastries. Eating a lot of sugar isn't good for
your heart disease at all. Healthy carbohydrates
involve whole grain breads, whole grain pasta, brown
rice, and a lot of vegetables. You should make
fruits and vegetables the main aspect of your diet.

Healthy cooking methods
Stir frying and sauteing with olive oil or canola
oil are both great methods, as you shouldn't dip
your food in batter and fry it anymore. If you
cook chicken, remove the skin and bake it in the
oven in foil.

Instead of frying your fish you should always bake
it. Steaming your vegetables can help maintain the
most nutrients. You should use cream sauces or lots
of butter anymore either. When you eat vegetables,
try squeezing lemon juice on them or using your
favorite seasonings.

As you make the proper changes to your diet, keep in
mind that it takes time for them to become habits.
Eating healthy is always great for your body and your
lifestyle, especially when it comes to your heart and
the prevention of heart disease.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Soy Protein Health and Living Longer

Soy protein is emerging as one of the great alternative protein sources for human consumption. Health experts are all excited about how soy protein can change the face of nutrition. What’s all the rage? Here are some great reasons to get with soy protein.

Soy Protein is Plant Protein
Soy beans contain complete protein and have one of the best protein digestibilities among all protein sources. Soy beans also contain little or no fat and have virtually no cholesterol. Lactose intolerant ones will be pleased to know that soy beans contain no lactose.

Being a plant protein, soy is free from steroids and antibiotics animal protein contains. It is also free from the parasites that contaminate some of these products. They also contain none of the diseases one can contract from mean sources such as Mad Cow Disease, and Foot and Mouth Disease.

Vegetarians love this bean as it provides a comparable – if not better – source of protein as compared to its animal counterpart. It provides a protein that is better and easier to digest and is comparable to most protein supplements.

Soy Beans are Very Versatile
Soy beans are very versatile. Various cuisines, especially Asian ones recognize the value of the humble soy bean. A variety of naturally yummy delicacies are all soy based: tofu, soy pudding, Soya milk, and meat substitutes – not to mention condiments such as soy sauce, and hoi sin sauce.

To counter the problem of world hunger, the growing of soybeans has been suggested. Not only are soybeans easy to grow and harvest, they will grow pretty much anywhere and produces much in a little time. There have been farmers reported to have replaced their entire crop line with soy bean plants. These hardy little plants produce much per harvest, and, as said earlier, can grow in even the most trying terrain.

The Great Substitute
Soy is low in fat and can be used to substitute most protein sources. When cooking, you may use soy substitutes instead of flour for a low fat alternative. This makes it a great protein source for those that are looking to lose weight without compromising their protein requirements.

Bodybuilders are considering how this can make their jobs a lot easier. Without the fat and with all the protein goodness – easily digestible at that – bodybuilding has just received a great blessing of a food.

Although these bodybuilders are currently debating how soy can be a help to bodybuilders, it doesn’t take away anything from what soy can contribute to the overall health of a person.

It is very advisable to stick to natural protein rather than processes protein if possible, as processed foods typically have some risk attached to them. The best use of this food can be attributed to how it perfectly fits into anyone’s low-fat, high-protein diet.

Soy products can be incorporated into shakes and drinks. And being lactose-free, lactose intolerant people will still be able to get their milkshake fix without having to suffer so.

Soy products are also a great source of other nutrients such as saponins, isoflavones, and phytosterol. Saponins help support a healthy immune system. It also combines with cholesterol to avoid increased absorption of cholesterol in the body. Phytosterols also help reduce the absorption of cholesterol in the body in the same way saponins do.

Isoflavones are powerful antioxidants and prevent the effects of free radicals in the body. They prevent many of the signs of aging and have been known to help prevent cancer. This alone makes soy a miracle protein source in its own right.

Isoflavones, along with vitamins A,C, and E are among the front liners in the fight against such disease – they also counter the effects of pollution, and stress.

How Much is Too Much
Unlike other protein sources, it is pretty safe to consume a wide amount of soy products. While allergies to soy products exist, cases are few and far between. When changing to a soy diet, however, it would be best to consult your physician or your nutritionist. Ask specifically if the soy interferes with any prescription drugs you are taking.

Soy can be great blessing for people who are looking for a great source of protein that does not entail the side effects of most of the other sources. It would be advisable for one to explore how it can improve one’s diet.