Tuesday, October 14, 2008

CLA- the fat burner/ muscle builder

CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid)


CLA is a fatty acid found in animal products - such as lamb, beef, and dairy. It is derived of safflower seed, so if you decide to purchase a bottle, make sure you check the label. Some brands will sunflower seed, which is a waste of your money. The most widely recognized brand is Tonalin® which is highly recommended, because it is the best quality one on the market.

Look for this logo or name on your CLA supplements. You can find them at any health food or supplement store. Or you can order them online- CLICK HERE!



Often overlooked as a fat-loss supplement, it's only recently begun to be touted as one of the most underrated supplements on the market. For that reason, CLA might be worth taking a second look at. Over two decades of research have shown CLA may significantly help reduce bodyfat, specifically belly fat, and there's even recent evidence to support that it increases muscle tissue. Primarily, though, athletes and people who are weight conscious have begun supplementing with CLA because it's been shown in research to significantly shift body composition in favor of fat loss and muscle gain.

Most researchers agree 3,000 mg (three grams) divided into three dosages per day with meals is necessary for fat reduction. On the bonus side, 3,000 mg to 6,000 mg (three to six grams) divided into three dosages per day with meals has been shown in recent studies to help induce muscle-tissue growth.

So, if you are looking for a safe all natural way to look great, without the jittery side effects of many other weight loss products, try CLA.

Monday, October 13, 2008

WEIGHT LOSS MYTHS!!!

Here are some nifty little "myths"about exercising finally revealed that I found at Diet.com

MYTH 1: You should perform cardio in your “fat burning zone.”


TRUTH: Step into any gym and you’ll hear personal trainers preaching that the best way to lose weight is by exercising in your “fat burning zone.” While this might sound good in theory, the “fat burning zone” is actually based on faulty interpretation of research showing activities performed at a low intensity (60 to 80 percent of max heart rate) burn a greater percentage of fat calories than higher intensity activities.

Fact is burning a greater percentage of fat doesn’t equate to burning more total fat calories. High-intensity exercise burns more fat calories on an absolute basis than lower intensity activities, making it the preferred choice for those looking to optimize fat loss.

One of the best fat-burning forms of cardio is interval training, where you intersperse periods of high-intensity exercise with periods of low-intensity exercise. This not only maximizes fat burning during the activity, but also increases a phenomenon called excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC) — the amount of calories burned once the activity is finished — which helps keep your metabolism elevated long after you’ve stopped working out.

MYTH 2: Sweat is a good indicator of exercise intensity.

TRUTH: You’ve no doubt heard fitness pros utter the phrase, “Ya gotta sweat.” Many people adopt this as an exercise mantra, believing it’s the key to a successful workout. Not!

While sweat tends to be associated with rigorous exercise, it is by no means essential to achieving results. If it was, you’d get buff lounging in a sauna!

Fact is sweat is an indicator that your body temperature is rising, not necessarily that you are exercising at an intense level. Your body regulates its temperature by activating your sweat glands, which then releases water through yourpores as a cooling mechanism.

Rather than focusing on how much you sweat, the best way to monitor exercise intensity is by using a rating of perceived exertion (RPE). This is a subjective scale that estimates how difficult an activity is to perform. I like to keep it simple and use a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being complete inactivity and 10 being all-out effort. If you want to exercise intensely, maintain a level of an 8 or more on the RPE scale.

MYTH 3: If you stop lifting weights, your muscle will turn to fat.

TRUTH: Some people refuse to lift weights for fear that their hard-earned muscle will simply morph into fat if they stop working out. Nonsense! Muscle and fat are two separate and distinct properties that have completely different molecular structures.

Muscle is a protein-based tissue comprised of filaments called actin and myosin. Body fat, on the other hand, consists of stored triglycerides, which are made up of a carbohydrate (glycerol) and three fatty acids. Hence, the possibility of muscle turning into fat (or vice versa) is akin to an apple becoming an orange: There’s simply no mechanism for it to happen.

Bottom line: don’t let the “muscle-to-fat myth” deter you from lifting weights. The only thing that happens when you stop weight training is that you ultimately lose the muscle that you’d developed.

On the plus side, muscle has “memory” so it’s easier to get back that muscle when you re-start your routine!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Free Money?!?!- How To Make Money Online


Everybody has heard the scams and ads for making money online, and we all know that they are all basically a big crock. I have searched far and wide across treachorous e-landso of the Internet to find a way to make money online that is simple and REAL! It is the cheapest too, and definitely worth the investment of less than 10 bucks. If you follow the advice in the E-Book you get to download, I guarantee, you WILL make money. It's an invaluable tool.
If you've ever wondered about how to make all your time on the Internet worth it, check out the Rich Jerk's Website!!!

Weight Loss Supplements- Are they worth it?









1. Conjugated Linoleic Acid, CLA, has a number of research studies behind it. It is a fatty acid that has been found to reduce cancer risks, body fat and to increase lean muscle tissue. The Journal of Nutrition reported a Scandanavian Research team found CLA to increase the lean body mass of humans and also to decrease the fat mass. Subjects also had lower blodd fat and cholestrol after taking CLA. CLA does occur naturally in meat and dairy products, but the levels are pretty low. Also, if you're following a healthy low-fat diet, you tend to not get as much meat and dairy, so supplementation may be the answer for getting a healthy dose of CLA.

2. Hydroxycitic Acid, HCA, is derived from a fruit, Garcinia cambogia or Malabar tamarind. It seems to work by inhibiting an enzyme that converts carbohydrates to fat. It also seems to suppress the appetite. Studies on humans have had mixed results with one study showing significant weight loss in participants. Another study using a high fiber diet, showed HCA had no effect on weight loss. Critics think the high fiber diet prevented absorbtion of the HCA. So, if you're on a high fiber diet, HCA may not be for you.

3.Phaseolomine is derived from the white kidney bean. It works by reducing your body's absorbtion of starchy carbohydrates. Since you absorb fewer calories, you lose weight. Seems like this supplement would be great to take if you knew you were going to indulge. Research has also shown that you burn more fat while taking phaseolomine. Subjects in one study lost 10% of their body fat in 30 days. Phaseolomine is typically found in carb blocker products.

4.5HTP works by increasing the level of Serotonin in the brain resulting in more stable emotions, better sleep and weight loss. I take 5HTP myself and have found it to be an excellent appetite suppresant as well as a mild mood booster. In one study where women were given either a placebo or 5HTP and a 1200 calorie diet, those who took the placebo lost 2.28 pounds and those who took 5HTP lost 10.34 pounds. This was accomplished in 6 weeks. Are there other supplements that work? There may be others that will stand the test of time and research, but for now these are the best non-prescription supplements I've found to enhance your weight loss efforts. Good luck losing the weight you want to lose!

For More Information and Tips for Weight Loss CLICK HERE!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

The Best Online Weight Loss Program!



What if I told you that there is a way to finally stop the pingpong dieting and start living your life to its fullest with a completely online weight loss plan that's guaranteed to work? Wait it gets better though - What if I told you that if you started this plan last month, RIGHT NOW you could be 23lbs lighter? That's right, a whole 23lbs or more is ready to come off that body to bring back the authentic you in ONE month - and again it's all online!

The code to weight loss has been historically hard to crack, many seem to think 'just eat less and workout a lot' will work - yeah - right... The truth is that there is no magic formula or secret pill or potion that's going to make you slim again - the only thing that will EVER work for you - is a customized plan that combines the best of all worlds (exercise, eating habits/portion control, supplements, and proper foods), put into a plan that fits into your lifestyle and routine.

The everLoss solution is guaranteed to work or your money back for 60 days! That means that you have two full months to try this plan and if it doesn't work - you get 100% of your money put right back into your account without any hassle or re-stocking fee or other BS.

Don’t miss out on this amazing revolution to dieting and weight loss, it will the best move you make this year!

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Make The Most Of Your Day Today!
The everLoss Team

Women and Weights
















Even Marilyn Monroe, the girly sex kitten herself, lifted weights! Proof that lifting weights is for girls!

Yes ladies, you can lift weights. In fact, if you really want to lose weight and get that dream body, you SHOULD! Don't worry, you won't get big and bulky! You CAN'T!!! It is physically impossible for you to build those manly looking muscles that scare so many of you away from lifting weights. Check out some of the best reasons for women to lift weights-
  1. You Will Be Physically Stronger.
    Increasing your strength will make you far less dependent upon others for assistance in daily living. Chores will be easier, lifting kids, groceries and laundry will no longer push you to the max. If your maximum strength is increased, daily tasks and routine exercise will be far less likely to cause injury. Research studies conclude that even moderate weight training can increase a woman's strength by 30 to 50 percent. Research also shows that women can develop their strength at the same rate as men.

  2. You Will Lose Body Fat.
    Studies performed by Wayne Westcott, PhD, from the South Shore YMCA in Quincy, Massachusetts, found that the average woman who strength trains two to three times a week for two months will gain nearly two pounds of muscle and will lose 3.5 pounds of fat. As your lean muscle increases so does your resting metabolism, and you burn more calories all day long. Generally speaking, for each pound of muscle you gain, you burn 35 to 50 more calories each day. That can really add up.

  3. You Will Gain Strength Without Bulk.
    Researchers also found that unlike men, women typically don't gain size from strength training, because compared to men, women have 10 to 30 times less of the hormones that cause muscle hypertrophy. You will, however, develop muscle tone and definition. This is a bonus.

  4. You Decrease Your Risk Of Osteoporosis.
    Research has found that weight training can increase spinal bone mineral density (and enhance bone modeling) by 13 percent in six months. This, coupled with an adequate amount of dietary calcium, can be a women's best defense against osteoporosis.

  5. You Will Improve Your Athletic Performance.
    Over and over research concludes that strength training improves athletic ability in all but the very elite athletes. Golfers can significantly increase their driving power. Cyclists are able to continue for longer periods of time with less fatigue. Skiers improve technique and reduce injury. Whatever sport you play, strength training has been shown to improve overall performance as well as decrease the risk of injury.

  6. You Will Reduce Your Risk Of Injury, Back Pain and Arthritis.
    Strength training not only builds stronger muscles, but also builds stronger connective tissues and increases joint stability. This acts as reinforcement for the joints and helps prevent injury. A recent 12-year study showed that strengthening the low-back muscles had an 80 percent success rate in eliminating or alleviating low-back pain. Other studies have indicated that weight training can ease the pain of osteoarthritis and strengthen joints.

  7. You Will Reduce Your Risk of Heart Disease.
    According to Dr. Barry A. Franklin, of William Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Michigan, weight training can improve cardiovascular health in several ways, including lowering LDL ("bad") cholesterol, increasing HDL ("good") cholesterol and lowering blood pressure. When cardiovascular exercise is added, these benefits are maximized.

  8. You Will Reduce Your Risk of Diabetes.
    In addition, Dr. Franklin noted that weight training may improve the way the body processes sugar, which may reduce the risk of diabetes. Adult-onset diabetes is a growing problem for women and men. Research indicates that weight training can increase glucose utilization in the body by 23 percent in four months.

  9. It Is Never Too Late To Benefit.
    Women in their 70s and 80s have built up significant strength through weight training and studies show that strength improvements are possible at any age. Note, however, that a strength training professional should always supervise older participants.

  10. You Will Improve Your Attitude And Fight Depression.
    A Harvard study found that 10 weeks of strength training reduced clinical depression symptoms more successfully than standard counseling did. Women who strength train commonly report feeling more confident and capable as a result of their program, all important factors in fighting depression.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Your Food Plan

Alright, get ready to take some notes, because this is what will make or break your health and fitness goals. Good nutrition is essential for good health. It ensures the body gets all the vital nutrients it needs to function. The four basic nutrients include: Water, Carbohydrates, Proteins, and Fats.

Now, let's get something straightened out here- You NEED all of these. Going on a low carb or low fat diet is not going to help you any. You need to learn how to balance all of these important nutrients into your daily diet.

Water, as we already discussed is essential. I already told you, and I don't want to explain it again, you need water. So drink it. LOTS of it!

Carbohydrates or Carbs as you Atkins enthusiasts like to refer to them as, supply the body with energy so it can function properly. That being said, it doesn't really make sense to go on a low or no car diet does it? But, you must be wise in choosing your carbohydrates. Carbs are divided into simple carbohydrates and complex carbohydrates. Simple carbohydrated are sometimes referred to as simple sugars because they are composed mainly of sugars from fruits and from lactose (milk). Complex carbs include fiber and starches- ie. vegetables, whole grains, beans, etc..
Stay away from refined and processed foods such as sodas, sugary foods and such. Opt for whole grain foods whenever possible. Check the label! If whole wheat isn't the first ingredient on the list, then it is not 100% whole wheat! And STOP eating white bread!!! You are going to die a most certain death, and you will certainly not lose weight.

Protein is essential for growth and development. It is important in nearly every bodily function, so in other words- you need to eat it. Protein is broken down into amino acids by the body, which all serve their own individual and synergystic purpose. More on these later. Proteins include lean meats such as turkey, chicken, fish, roast beef, cheese, eggs, nuts, yogurt, tofu, beans, etc..

Fats. Erase anything and everything you have ever heard about eating fats. You need fats. You need them for a healthy heart and brain, and you certainly need them to lose weight. Understand though, that fats must be consumed in moderation. There are also different kinds of fats that you need to know to look for. One to be wary of is trans fats. Watch for these in nearly all processed or man made foods. They aren't necessarily required to be put on food labels, but keep in mind that they are out there. Good sources of healthy fats include olive oil, natural peanut butter, almost any unsalted nuts.

Now- to the diet plan. You will eat. And you will eat a lot. It may be more than what you are accustomed to eating on a daily basis, but rest assured that a constant supply of healthy foods will give your body the energy it needs and the ability to kick your metabolism into high gear.

You will eat 5 to 6 small meals a day. What?! You say..that's crazy talk! Forget the HUGE breakfast, HUGE lunch, and HUGE dinner routine you are used to. Smaller mini-meals spread throughout the day will spread your energy throughout the day as well, keeping you less likely to get hungry and binge on some junk food later. Makes sense right?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Kelp- the weight loss wonder!!!

I just recently bought a bottle of Kelp from a local health store. It's hard to believe that it has taken me this long to break down and buy a bottle, considering the numerous health benefits. Many people know of Kelp supplements for their Iodine content, which helps to regulate the thyroid gland. If your thyroid is not working properly(underactive), it can lead to weight gain, moodiness, cold hands and feet, tiredness all the time, etc.. This can be a pretty big contributor to why a lot of people gain weight. It is a great source of minerals and vitamins, especially B vitamins which are associated with energy and metabolism. It's good for brain health, hair loss, obesity, ulcers, and the list goes on.

Hypothyroidism is caused by an underproduction of thyroid hormones. The main purpose of thyroid hormone is to run the body's metabolism. This condition is more common than you may think. In fact, more than 5 million Americans suffer from it, and about 10% of all women have some degree of hypothyroidism. Symptoms include-
  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Weight gain or increased difficulty losing weight
  • Coarse, dry hair
  • Dry, rough pale skin
  • Hair loss
  • Cold intolerance (can't tolerate the cold like those around you)
  • Muscle cramps and frequent muscle aches
  • Constipation
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Memory loss
  • Abnormal menstrual cycles
  • Decreased libido
Of course, if you suspect you have an underactive thyroid, it is recommended that you get tested by a physician to know for sure. For a quick self test, take your temperature immediately upon waking every morning for a week. Be sure to do it right away before you move around and be still and quiet, so you get an accurate reading. If your temperature is consistently below 97.6 degrees you may have thyroid issues. My temperature generally tends to be 94-95 degrees when I don't use natural supplements to help keep it in check.

Regardless of whether or not you have an actual thyroid problem, I would still recommend trying a Kelp supplement. It will help correct any mineral deficiencies in the body and ensure that your metabolism keeps running smoothly! They are usually pretty cheap, you can get them for about $3 at most health stores, so it's a pretty cheap "weight loss pill".

So as far as that magic pill that'll give you more energy and help you lose weight, Kelp would be up there in the rankings for effectiveness.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

100 Diet tips and tricks

Here is a nifty little list I found whilst browsing through the Internet at WebMD. It's nice cause it breaks down little tips and tricks you can incorporate into your diet to make it easier, rather than just jumping into this whole eating healthier thing without a clue. Soon to come: Sample meal plans to fit your lifestyle! :)
Happy reading!

1. Add just one fruit or veggie serving daily. Get comfortable with that, then add an extra serving until you reach 8 to 10 a day.

2. Eat at least two servings of a fruit or veggie at every meal.

3. Resolve never to supersize your food portions—unless you want to supersize your clothes.

4. Make eating purposeful, not mindless. Whenever you put food in your mouth, peel it, unwrap it, plate it, and sit. Engage all of the senses in the pleasure of nourishing your body.

5. Start eating a big breakfast. It helps you eat fewer total calories throughout the day.

6. Make sure your plate is half veggies and/or fruit at both lunch and dinner.

Are there Any Easy Tricks to Help Me Cut Calories?
7. Eating out? Halve it, and bag the rest. A typical restaurant entree has 1,000 to 2,000 calories, not even counting the bread, appetizer, beverage, and dessert.

8. When dining out, make it automatic: Order one dessert to share.

9. Use a salad plate instead of a dinner plate.

10. See what you eat. Plate your food instead of eating out of the jar or bag.

11. Eat the low-cal items on your plate first, then graduate. Start with salads, veggies, and broth soups, and eat meats and starches last. By the time you get to them, you'll be full enough to be content with smaller portions of the high-calorie choices.

12.
Instead of whole milk, switch to 1 percent. If you drink one 8-oz glass a day, you'll lose 5 lb in a year.

13. Juice has as many calories, ounce for ounce, as soda. Set a limit of one 8-oz glass of fruit juice a day.

14. Get calories from foods you chew, not beverages. Have fresh fruit instead of fruit juice.

15. Keep a food journal. It really works wonders. (Katelyn note: TRUE STORY! It works ridiculously well!!!! Try it-and be honest when you're writing it down.)

16. Follow the Chinese saying: "Eat until you are eight-tenths full."

17. Use mustard instead of mayo.

18. Eat more soup. The noncreamy ones are filling but low-cal.

19. Cut back on or cut out caloric drinks such as soda, sweet tea, lemonade, etc. People have lost weight by making just this one change. If you have a 20-oz bottle of Coca-Cola every day, switch to Diet Coke. You should lose 25 lb in a year. (Katelyn note: Diet soda is actually worse for your waistline than regular. Disregard this tip and cut out soda altogether. Your body will thank you.)

20. Take your lunch to work.

21. Sit when you eat.

22. Dilute juice with water.

23. Have mostly veggies for lunch.

24. Eat at home.

25. Limit alcohol to weekends.

How Can I Eat More Veggies?
26. Have a V8 or tomato juice instead of a Diet Coke at 3 pm.

27. Doctor your veggies to make them delicious: Dribble maple syrup over carrots, and sprinkle chopped nuts on green beans.

28. Mix three different cans of beans and some diet Italian dressing. Eat this three-bean salad all week.

29. Don't forget that vegetable soup counts as a vegetable.

30. Rediscover the sweet potato.

31. Use prebagged baby spinach everywhere: as "lettuce" in sandwiches, heated in soups, wilted in hot pasta, and added to salads.

32. Spend the extra few dollars to buy vegetables that are already washed and cut up.

33. Really hate veggies? Relax. If you love fruits, eat plenty of them; they are just as healthy (especially colorful ones such as oranges, mangoes, and melons).

34. Keep seven bags of your favorite frozen vegetables on hand. Mix any combination, microwave, and top with your favorite low-fat dressing. Enjoy 3 to 4 cups a day. Makes a great quick dinner.

Can You Give Me a Mantra that will Help Me Stick to My Diet?
35. "The best portion of high-calorie foods is the smallest one. The best portion of vegetables is the largest one. Period."

36. "I'll ride the wave. My cravings will disappear after 10 minutes if I turn my attention elsewhere."

37. "I want to be around to see my grandchildren, so I can forgo a cookie now." ( haha sad but true!)

38. "I am a work in progress."

39. "It's more stressful to continue being fat than to stop overeating."

I Eat Healthy, but I'm Overweight. What Mistakes Could I Be Making without Realizing It?
40. Skipping meals. Many healthy eaters "diet by day and binge by night."(like a superhero...or something...this is me in a nutshell. Don't be that.)

41. Don't "graze" yourself fat. You can easily munch 600 calories of pretzels or cereal without realizing it.

42. Eating pasta like crazy. A serving of pasta is 1 cup, but some people routinely eat 4 cups.

43.
Eating supersize bagels of 400 to 500 calories for snacks.

44. Ignoring "Serving Size" on the Nutrition Facts panel.

45. Snacking on bowls of nuts. Nuts are healthy but dense with calories. Put those bowls away, and use nuts as a garnish instead of a snack.

46. Thinking all energy bars and fruit smoothies are low-cal.

What Can I Eat for a Healthy Low-Cal Dinner if I Don't Want to Cook?
47. A smoothie made with fat-free milk, frozen fruit, and wheat germ.

48. The smallest fast-food burger (with mustard and ketchup, not mayo) and a no-cal beverage. Then at home, have an apple or baby carrots.

49. A peanut butter sandwich on whole wheat bread with a glass of 1 percent milk and an apple.

50. Precooked chicken strips and microwaved frozen broccoli topped with Parmesan cheese.

51. A healthy frozen entree with a salad and a glass of 1 percent milk.

52. Scramble eggs in a nonstick skillet. Pop some asparagus in the microwave, and add whole wheat toast. If your cholesterol levels are normal, you can have seven eggs a week!

53. A bag of frozen vegetables heated in the microwave, topped with 2 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese and 2 tablespoons of chopped nuts.

54. Prebagged salad topped with canned tuna, grape tomatoes, shredded reduced-fat cheese, and low-cal Italian dressing.

55. Keep lean sandwich fixings on hand: whole wheat bread, sliced turkey, reduced-fat cheese, tomatoes, mustard with horseradish.

56. Heat up a can of good soup.

57. Cereal, fruit, and fat-free milk makes a good meal anytime.

58. Try a veggie sandwich from Subway.

59. Precut fruit for a salad and add yogurt.

What's Your Best Advice for Avoiding those Extra Holiday Pounds?
60. Don't tell yourself, "It's okay, it's the holidays." That opens the door to 6 weeks of splurging.

61. Remember, EAT before you meet. Have this small meal before you go to any parties: a hardboiled Egg, Apple, and a Thirst quencher (water, seltzer, diet soda, tea).

62. As obvious as it sounds, don't stand near the food at parties. Make the effort, and you'll find you eat less.

63. At a buffet? Eating a little of everything guarantees high calories. Decide on three or four things, only one of which is high in calories. Save that for last so there's less chance of overeating.

64.
For the duration of the holidays, wear your snuggest clothes that don't allow much room for expansion. Wearing sweats is out until January.

65. Give it away! After company leaves, give away leftover food to neighbors, doormen, or delivery people, or take it to work the next day.

66. Walk around the mall three times before you start shopping.

67. Make exercise a nonnegotiable priority.

68. Dance to music with your family in your home. One dietitian reported that when she asks her patients to do this, initially they just smile, but once they've done it, they say it is one of the easiest ways to involve the whole family in exercise.

How Can I Control a Raging Sweet Tooth?
69. Once in a while, have a lean, mean salad for lunch or dinner, and save the meal's calories for a full dessert.

70. Are you the kind of person who does better if you make up your mind to do without sweets and just not have them around? Or are you going to do better if you have a limited amount of sweets every day? One RD reported that most of her clients pick the latter and find they can avoid bingeing after a few days.

71. If your family thinks they need a very sweet treat every night, try to strike a balance between offering healthy choices but allowing them some "free will." Compromise with low-fat ice cream and fruit, or sometimes just fruit with a dollop of whipped cream.

72. Try 2 weeks without sweets. It's amazing how your cravings vanish. (True!)

73. Eat more fruit. A person who gets enough fruit in his diet doesn't have a raging sweet tooth.

74. Eat your sweets, just eat them smart! Carve out about 150 calories per day for your favorite sweet. That amounts to about an ounce of chocolate, half a modest slice of cake, or 1/2 cup of regular ice cream.

75. Try these smart little sweets: sugar-free hot cocoa, frozen red grapes, fudgsicles, sugar-free gum, Nutri-Grain chocolate fudge twists, Tootsie Rolls, and hard candy.

How Can I Conquer My Downfall: Bingeing at Night?
76. Eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The large majority of people who struggle with night eating are those who skip meals or don't eat balanced meals during the day. This is a major setup for overeating at night.

77. Eat your evening meal in the kitchen or dining room, sitting down at the table.

78. Drink cold unsweetened raspberry tea. It tastes great and keeps your mouth busy.

79. Change your nighttime schedule. It will take effort, but it will pay off. You need something that will occupy your mind and hands.

80. If you're eating at night due to emotions, you need to focus on getting in touch with what's going on and taking care of yourself in a way that really works. Find a nonfood method of coping with your stress.

81. Put a sign on the kitchen and refrigerator doors: "Closed after Dinner."

82. Brush your teeth right after dinner to remind you: No more food. (definitely helps)

83. Eat without engaging in any other simultaneous activity. No reading, watching TV, or sitting at the computer.

84. Eating late at night won't itself cause weight gain. It's how many calories—not when you eat them—that counts.

How Can I Reap Added Health Benefits from My Dieting?
85. Fat-free isn't always your best bet. Research has found that none of the lycopene or alpha- or beta-carotene that fight cancer and heart disease is absorbed from salads with fat-free dressing. Only slightly more is absorbed with reduced-fat dressing; the most is absorbed with full-fat dressing. But remember, use your dressing in moderate amounts.

86. Skipping breakfast will leave you tired and craving naughty foods by midmorning. To fill up healthfully and tastefully, try this sweet, fruity breakfast full of antioxidants. In a blender, process 1 c nonfat plain or vanilla yogurt, 1 1/3 c frozen strawberries (no added sugar), 1 peeled kiwi, and 1 peeled banana. Pulse until mixture is milkshake consistency. Makes one 2-cup serving; 348 calories and 1.5 fat grams. (YUM! Shakes are a great way to fill you up with delicious and nutritious food!)

87. If you're famished by 4 p.m. and have no alternative but an office vending machine, reach for the nuts—. The same goes if your only choices are what's available in the hotel minibar.

88. Next time you're feeling wiped out in late afternoon, forgo that cup of coffee and reach for a cup of yogurt instead. The combination of protein, carbohydrate, and fat in an 8-ounce serving of low-fat yogurt will give you a sense of fullness and well-being that coffee can't match, as well as some vital nutrients. If you haven't eaten in 3 to 4 hours, your blood glucose levels are probably dropping, so eating a small amount of nutrient-rich food will give your brain and your body a boost.

89. Making just a few changes to your pantry shelves can get you a lot closer to your weight loss goals. Here's what to do: If you use corn and peanut oil, replace it with olive oil. Same goes for breads—go for whole wheat. Trade in those fatty cold cuts like salami and bologna and replace them canned tuna, sliced turkey breast, and lean roast beef. Change from drinking whole milk to fat-free milk or low-fat soy milk. This is hard for a lot of people so try transitioning down to 2 percent and then 1 percent before you go fat-free.

90. Nothing's less appetizing than a crisper drawer full of mushy vegetables. Frozen vegetables store much better, plus they may have greater nutritional value than fresh. Food suppliers typically freeze veggies just a few hours after harvest, locking in the nutrients. Fresh veggies, on the other hand, often spend days in the back of a truck before they reach your supermarket.

91. Worried about the trans-fat content in your peanut butter? Good news: In a test done on Skippy, JIF, Peter Pan, and a supermarket brand, the levels of trans fats per 2-tablespoon serving were far lower than 0.5 gram—low enough that under proposed laws, the brands can legally claim zero trans fats on the label. They also contained only 1 gram more sugar than natural brands—not a significant difference. (Fat-free JIF tastes AMAZING!!! It's my favorite food...ever!)

Eating Less Isn't Enough—What Exercising Tips Will Help Me Shed Pounds?
92. Overeating is not the result of exercise. Vigorous exercise won't stimulate you to overeat. It's just the opposite. Exercise at any level helps curb your appetite immediately following the workout.

93. When you're exercising, you shouldn't wait for thirst to strike before you take a drink. By the time you feel thirsty, you're already dehydrated. Try this: Drink at least 16 ounces of water, sports drinks, or juices two hours before you exercise. Then drink 8 ounces an hour before and another 4 to 8 ounces every 15 to 20 minutes during your workout. Finish with at least 16 ounces after you're done exercising.

94. Tune in to an audio book while you walk. It'll keep you going longer and looking forward to the next walk—and the next chapter! Check your local library for a great selection. Look for a whodunit; you might walk so far you'll need to take a cab home!

95. Think yoga's too serene to burn calories? Think again. You can burn 250 to 350 calories during an hour-long class (that's as much as you'd burn from an hour of walking)! Plus, you'll improve muscle strength, flexibility, and endurance.

96. Drinking too few can hamper your weight loss efforts. That's because dehydration can slow your metabolism by 3 percent, or about 45 fewer calories burned a day, which in a year could mean weighing 5 pounds more. The key to water isn't how much you drink, it's how frequently you drink it. Small amounts sipped often work better than 8 ounces gulped down at once.

How Can I Manage My Emotional Eating and Get the Support I Need?
97. A registered dietitian (RD) can help you find healthy ways to manage your weight with food. To find one in your area who consults with private clients call (800) 366-1655.

98. The best place to drop pounds may be your own house of worship. Researchers set up healthy eating and exercise programs in 16 Baltimore churches. More than 500 women participated and after a year the most successful lost an average of 20 lb. Weight loss programs based on faith are so successful because there's a built-in community component that people can feel comfortable with.

99. Here's another reason to keep level-headed all the time: Pennsylvania State University research has found that women less able to cope with stress—shown by blood pressure and heart rate elevations—ate twice as many fatty snacks as stress-resistant women did, even after the stress stopped (in this case, 25 minutes of periodic jackhammer-level noise and an unsolvable maze).

100. Sitting at a computer may help you slim down. When researchers at Brown University School of Medicine put 92 people on online weight loss programs for a year, those who received weekly e-mail counseling shed 5 1/2 more pounds than those who got none. Counselors provided weekly feedback on diet and exercise logs, answered questions, and cheered them on. Most major online diet programs offer many of these features.

Fun little start to our weight loss portion of the blog! I will be giving you more specific tips and tidbits of info in future articles. Good luck! :)

Monday, September 8, 2008

Weight Loss- Your stats

It's nice to know where you stand when you first begin any weight loss journey. Write down your basic stats as shown below to help track of your awesome progress as the weeks go by-

Being at a healthy weight means neither weighing too much nor too little. There are a few methods for determining your optimum weight. One method involves using a simple formula that estimates your ideal weight using your height:

  • For women: add 100 pounds of body weight for the first 5 feet of height then add 5 pounds for each additional inch of height. Example: a 5’ 6” woman should weigh about 130 lbs.
  • For men: add 106 pounds of body weight for the first 5 feet of height then add 6 pounds for each additional inch of height. Example: a 5’ 10” man should weigh about 166 lbs.
  • To account for differences in body type, people with a small body frame should subtract 10% from the weight they calculated. Example: a 5’ 6” woman with a small frame should weigh about 130 - 13 = 117 lbs. For a large frame, 10% should be added. Example a 5’ 10” man with a large frame should weigh about 166 + 17 = 183 lbs.
Body mass index (BMI)

Another way to estimate a healthy weight range is by calculating your body mass index or BMI. The BMI is an indirect measure of the portion of your body that is made up of fat. This is the measure most often used to determine your risk of diseases related to excess weight such as type 2 diabets and heart disease.

Your BMI takes into account your height and weight; higher numbers mean you carry more fat. If your BMI is above 25 but below 30, you are considered “overweight.” If your BMI is between 30 and 39 you are considered “obese,” while a BMI of 40 or above is considered extremely or “morbidly obese.” Notice that the terms “overweight” and “obese” are not synonyms; medically, they refer to distinct categories of excess weight.

The formulas for calculating BMI are:

  • BMI = (weight in pounds/height in inches2) x 703
    -or-
  • BMI = weight in kilograms/height in meters2

Here is how to measure and calculate your BMI (using pounds and inches):

  • Weigh yourself on your bathroom scale.
  • Measure your height in inches using a yardstick or tape measure.
  • Take your height in inches and square the number (i.e. multiply the number of inches by the same number of inches).
  • Divide your weight in pounds by the answer from above (your height in inches squared).
  • Multiply that answer by 703. The answer is your BMI.
Or.. If you know your height and weight, you can use this easy little chart.
Find your height in inches on the left vertical column, and then find your weight in pounds in the corresponding horizontal row. The number directly above your weight in the of the chart is your BMI.

For example: If you are 65" and 150 lbs, your BMI is 25.
http://win.niddk.nih.gov/statistics/images/weightchart.jpg
Body fat measurements

Body fat measurements are used to estimate the percentage of your body weight made up by fat. A registered dietitian or exercise physiologist can help you calculate your body fat.

For women, the recommended amount of body fat is 20 - 21%, while the average American woman has approximately 22 - 25% body fat. A woman with 30% body fat or more is considered obese.

For men, the recommended amount of body fat is 13 - 17% while the average American man has approximately 17 - 19% body fat. A man with 25% body fat or higher is considered obese.

Body shape

While it is never healthy to carry too much excess weight, where you carry the weight on you can have implications for your health.

There are two main types of body shape called “apples” and “pears” based on the parts of the body where people tend to store excess fat. Apple-shaped people have central body fat in the abdomen, mainly around the stomach and chest. Pear-shaped people store excess body fat below the waist in the hips, thighs, and buttocks. Research studies have demonstrated that having an apple shape increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. For unknown reasons, central body fat is more resistant to the actions of insulin and so increases the risk for type 2 diabetes.

To determine if you are an apple or a pear, you can stand in front of a full-length mirror and decide where the majority of your excess weight is stored. You can also use a tape measure to measure your waist just above the hipbone while you exhale (don’t suck in your stomach). The risks of an apple shape increase for women whose waist is more than 35 inches and for men whose waist is more than 40 inches.

The most accurate way to determine your body shape is to calculate your waist to hip ratio, or WHR. To get your WHR, measure your waist at the smallest part and your hips at the widest part and then divide your waist measurement by your hip measurement. A healthy WHR for women is 0.80 or below and for men is 1.0 or below.

Don't forget that this does not necessarily take into consideration your muscle mass or weight distribution. It is only a general guideline for you.


Weight Loss- Exercise

First question to ask yourself-

Do you exercise? You say, "Well yeah, I go jogging and run or whatever every so often..."

Second question-

Is it doing anything for you?

If your answer is no-you probably aren't working out correctly.
First, make sure your diet is in tip top shape. That is ESSENTIAL to make sure your body can perform at it's best during your workouts. Second, remember: going to the gym doesn't have to be a grueling ordeal. It should be a part of your day to look forward to. It's a time for self improvement, making your body stronger and healthier. It can be almost meditative if you let it be.
I'm not asking you all to become triathlon athletes/bodybuilders, that's just silly. You all have lives and other important things going on. But, if you want to stick with an exercise program, whether it be for weight loss or any of the other numerous health related benefits, you need to MAKE TIME! Exercise doesn't work if you're just thinking about it. Schedule it into your day. Even if it's just ten minutes, make it happen.

If you are new to exercise or are a beginner, get the images of Richard Simmons and sequined spandex out of your head. Nobody's going to make you wear sparkly gym wear. Just be comfortable. Whether you plan to work out at the gym or at your own home, make time.

Sometimes, it's easier for someone just starting, who is maybe a bit out of shape, to begin a new program at home.

Also remember- you need a plan before you start. Get a piece of paper and write down exactly what kind of workout you are doing on what day. You can't go run on the treadmill and prance around the gym floor, picking up a weight in between conversations and think you got a great workout when you barely broke a sweat! That is where I would recommend keeping a notebook handy to help you keep track of 1.) what exercises you did, 2.) how many sets and reps, and 3.) how you feel throughout and after.

Search the web, buy fitness magazines or whatever you please, but find a good basic workout plan. I guarantee if you go to the magazine rack at the grocery store and look, you will find plenty of different options for your reading pleasure. I recommend Muscle & Fitness and Muscle & Fitness Hers. These are awesome magazines for someone who really wants to get into it! An amazing book I would recommend EVERYONE to read is the Abs Diet by David Zinczenko. It is a very thorough book for someone who wants to have a plan made for them that has been proven to work. It will show you how to eat, how to exercise, and it will entertain you all at the same time! I will post a few meal and workout examples from the book in later discussions.

THE WORKOUT PLAN

Now the fun begins....
Do cardio. ie: running, biking, walking, elliptical, etc...Everyone thinks this is the only way to burn fat. Not true. It is good for you, and it does burn fat, I'll give you that. But, if you really want to amp up your fat burning and make your gym visits worth it, you need to lift weights!

Ladies..you can lift weights. You don't need to be afraid of bulking up and looking like a man. In fact it is virtually impossible for you to do so, because of your hormones. Men tend to bulk up bigger and faster because of their testosterone. So unless you're a woman taking steroids, lifting weights is only going to make you tighter, toner, leaner, and hotter! And forget those wimpy little 5 lb pink dumbbells. Lifting heavier weights challenges your muscles to become stronger and more "toned". Don't be afraid to workout like a guy! Sometimes, better results come from doing so! :)
Not to mention, lifting weights turns up the heat on your metabolism, causing your body to burn more calories just to keep that newly built muscle alive. Meaning more weight loss. When you lift weights, it not only causes you to burn calories while you work out, but you will also burn calories for hours after you leave the gym! Pretty awesome stuff! This means you are burning fat like a mother to show all the effort you put into toning the muscles underneath. Pretty simple equation.

Lastly, listen to your body. Don't try to be Hercules right off the bat. Start out slowly to prevent any injuries or stress to your body. Doing this will help you stick with it too. If you run 50 miles and lift weights for an hour and a half your first day, chances are you aren't going to feel up to going back to the gym for quite a while. Don't get me wrong though- you want to challenge your body, that's what makes changes, but keep in mind that you have limits too.

Also, remember not to focus on the numbers. Stop weighing yourself everyday, it will only depress you. It is also not a good indication of your health and fitness. In fact, throw your scale away. I weigh the same now as I did in high school, but I am a heck of a lot smaller and more toned than I was then. Muscle weighs more than fat, so take that into consideration. Gauge your results by how you feel and how your clothes fit. If I were to still be hung up on the numbers on the scale, trying to achieve that "perfect" weight, I'd probably look anorexic. Sometimes, that ideal weight you have in mind is totally unrealistic for you. And remember, this doesn't happen in a week. Patience is the key here. Stick with it for a few weeks and the results will amaze you! Once you begin to see the transformation your body takes for the better, you'll never turn back! :)

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Weight loss- Food

Okay, here's what everyone wants to know: How to lose weight.
First off- there is no magic pill. Second-you do have to eat healthier and exercise.

I'm sorry to be the one to tell you, but it's true. You will get out of it what you put into it. So, forget the diet pills and fat burners, they don't really work forever (Trust me, I've tried them all.), and start keeping track of what you eat and the amount of exercise you do. It's really not that hard, and seriously, it's the only way you are going to lose weight and KEEP IT OFF!!!

So, how to begin this weight loss journey....

Your food. This is probably THE most important thing you can do that will affect your weight. And stop dieting! What a waste of time!!! You can eat good tasting healthy food, lose weight, and still be happy!!! It does not have to be a miserable ordeal. This is a life long commitment you need to make. Not a for a week and then give up cause you didn't lose 20 pounds. It doesn't work that way. You really need to change your lifestyle around. Trust me, it is worth it, and once you do, it will just become habit for you. Your whole body will become healthier, you'll have more energy, and to top it all off, you'll lose weight!!! It's such a simple concept!

Like discussed in one of the previous sections, a good rule of thumb is- If you can't find it in nature...don't eat it. It makes grocery shopping so much easier if you just keep thinking of that. This means more fruits, vegetables, meats, etc...

So you say, "Why can't I just go on one of those fad diets like Atkins or Jenny Craig?"
...cause they're just a fad. Diets aren't meant to be used forever, and who wants to be on a diet the rest of their life?

THE PROBLEMS WITH DIETS
  1. They reduce calories too severely. Reducing your calories may work at first, but eventually all that calorie cutting will leave you feeling hungry. Thus causing you to raid the local pizza place and binge on all of the delightful evilness within, making all of your efforts worthless!
  2. They restrict too many foods. Who wants to give up ice cream and pizza for the rest of their lives?! If you need to, these things won't hurt in moderation, but you need to make sure the rest of your diet is good. Any diet that makes you give up your favorite food probably isn't going to be successful for very long...
The conclusion is, don't diet. Chances are, you'll lose weight initially, but the second you go off them and back to your ravenous lifestyle, you will gain it all back and then some. Eat healthy. It's almost too easy. In future discussions, I will give daily meal examples to give you an idea of what a day's worth of food would look like for you! Also, we will weigh the pros and cons of some of the more popular diets out there to help you see the insanity of it all. :)

Mercury!!! The silent killer!!!

So we all know mercury is toxic right? Break open a mercury thermometer and you'd be evacuated from the building by men in yellow air-tight suits. Pretty lethal, right? Well, did you know that if you have dental fillings, you could be releasing mercury vapors into your body?
Not only in fillings, but Mercury is everywhere. In the air, water, and food.
The two most common ways to be exposed to Mercury is-
  1. Eating fish. We have all heard about fish possibly containing mercury. Try to limit your fish intake to only a few times a week if you must. Taking a fish oil or omega supplement? (Which you should anyway. More later...) Make sure your supplements are purified and processed to contain the lowest levels of mercury. Try GNC's fish oils or Nordic Natural's brand.
  2. Dental fillings. What?! you say, "They don't use mercury anymore!" Well, you're wrong. The silver amalgam fillings that we are talking about, have been used by dentists for over 160 years. In fact, more than one million of these deadly fillings are given to patients in America during a single work week! Research has proved that mercury vapors escape from these fillings from brushing, chewing, or eating hot and acidic food.
Mercury is more toxic than lead, cadmium, and arsenic. More than likely, if you bring up this concern to your dentist, they'll tell you that the issue is way overblown. Of course they'll say that, they don't want to lose their jobs!

Amalgam fillings contain a blend of metals-50% mercury, tin, silver, zinc, copper. Mercury, a toxic heavy metal, has been proven to be unstable, meaning it can bleed out of the fillings and into the human body, mainly the liver, kidneys, brain, and endocrine glands. Mercury is capable of crossing the placenta and collecting in fetal tissue, resulting in birth defects. A big issue for prospective parents!

The American Dental Association endorses mercury removal only in the cases of cracks, chips, leaks, or other structural problems. WHY?! Why is the second most toxic metal on earth used to fill teeth yet today?! Theory is that the ADA still supports the use of mercury in fillings because of the huge lawsuits and fines that would most likely occur. So, if a dentist removes a mercury filling for anything other than structural reasons, he could lose his license to practice dentistry and be bowled over with tons of fines.

Heavy metal toxicity is a slow process. Usually, affected people just don't feel good. They're night sure why, and they just feel tired all the time. Mercury can cause an autoimmune response in the body. Meaning, when mercury enters the membrane of a cell, the body sense the abnormality and then forms antibodies against it. But, because the mercury is inside the body's own cells, it is essentially attacking itself! This can lead to rheumatoid arthritis, thyroid problems, lupus, multiple sclerosis, and other autoimmune diseases.

THE EFFECTS OF MERCURY POISONING
  • Inhibits DNA repair
  • Alters cell's ability to control the exchange of materials coming in and out of the cell
  • Can alter the structure of molecules
  • Hinder the function of enzymes
  • Interfere with nerve impulses
  • Produce autoimmune response in the body (when the immune system attacks itself)
  • Interfere with endocrine function
  • gets rid of good minerals in the body
  • kill or alter good digestive bacteria
  • contribute to antibiotic resistance
SYMPTOMS OF MERCURY EXPOSURE

  • Tremors in fine voluntary movements (like handwriting, etc..)
  • Depression, fatigue, increased irritability, moodiness, and nervous excitability
  • Inability to concentrate and loss of memory
  • Insomnia or drowsiness
  • Nausea or Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Birth defects and miscarriages
  • Kidney disease
  • Pneumonitis
  • Swollen glands and tongue
  • Sores and ulcers in mouth (ie: canker sores!)
  • Dark pigmentation of gums and loosening of teeth
Quick test-
Look at your fingernails. Do your nails have a lunula? That is the "half moon" shape at the base of the nail. Usually your thumbs will, but if the others don't, you may want to get tested for mercury toxicity. (Your little fingers don't have one) This is a common sign.

For more information on this issue call the American College for Advancement in Medicine (ACAM) at 1-800-LEADOUT for a doctor near you, to help with testing and aid you in detixification and/or removal of your fillings.

More to come on your options for natural detoxification of heavy metals...

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Toxins II- Water

Water, the gift that keeps on giving. Obviously if you've made it this far in life, you know- water is important. Humans can only go without water for 3-5 days before dying. The average body is 70 % water. Water in the body is responsible for nearly every bodily process you can imagine- digestion, absorption, circulation, excretion, transporting nutrients, maintaining body temperature, carrying out waste material, etc... You already know, you lose water through your sweat, going to the bathroom and whatever. So seeing how vital water is to your body's well being, don't you want to make sure you're getting enough of it? That's a good start, but you also need to be sure of the quality. Unfortunately, not all water is created equal.

You see, good quality water is beneficial to all disorders. Water can get rid of headaches, stomach, bladder, and anxiety problems, among others. Water flushes toxins out of the body allowing it to function properly and reduce the effects of most disorders that are caused by toxins in the first place.

Oh, you want to lose weight? Drink some water. Sore joints? Water. More energy? Water.
How simple. You need it anyway, why not make sure you are getting enough of the the quality water your body deserves? It is recommended to drink about ten glasses or 80 oz of water per day.

So water is cheap, easy to find and good for you. So what's the problem? Finding good quality water. It's easier than you think. Go to the grocery store and fill up the gallon jugs they have provided for you at the water refill machine. They are usually in most stores like Walmart, Pick n' Save, etc... And if you bring back your used jugs it will only cost you about 39 cents per jug. Not bad considering your other options....

So you drink water from the tap, eh? Why don't you go wrap your mouth around an exhaust pipe? You may assume that the water from your sink is clean and safe, but that is not necessarily the case. Regardless of the source, be it a lake, river, or a well, it can contain harmful chemicals and inorganic materials. Water can contain radon, fluoride, arsenic, iron, lead, copper, mercury, and other heavy metals. Other contaminants include- fertilizers, asbestos, cyanides, herbacides, pesticides, and industrial chemicals. They can get into water through soil or even plumbing pipes. More fun things you may get from your tap include viruses, bacteria, and parasites.

Grossly enough, some substances are intentionally added to the public water supply to kill bacteria, adjust the PH, eliminate cloudiness, etc... These include- chlorine, fluorides, carbon, lime, phosphates, soda ash, and aluminum sulfate.

Every year, almost one million people get sick from contaminated water while 900 DIE from water related diseases. Public water may have the contaminants under the "allowable" amounts, but the total of all of them may still be harmful to your health. Regardless, more than 1/3 of all community water systems have been cited for failure to meet the EPA's water safety standards. What a nice thought.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Toxins I- Air

Q: Do you need to detoxify?

A: Do you breathe? Do you eat? Or drink water? Then the answer is YES!

Over time, toxins build up in the body due to pollutants in the air we breath, chemicals in the food and water we consume, and a variety of other ways.
AIR POLLUTION
Air pollution is contamination of the air by harmful substances. Over time, exposure to the chemicals and harmful particles can cause
  • cancer
  • birth defects
  • brain and nerve damage
  • injury to the lungs and breathing passages
If your family has a history of heart attacks, take note- dust and particulates from smokestacks and especially from diesel exhaust are suspected of increasing the number of deaths from heart attacks by affecting the heart's ability to maintain it's rhythm.

Air pollution has considerably thinned the ozone layer meant to protect us, allowing the dangerous radiation from sun to cause cancer, birth defects and more.

Indoor air pollution is almost as big of an issue as the outdoor kind. In the U.S., most people spend 80- 90% of their time indoors. This is a larger problems in northern climates where the winter weather tends to keep people inside. Faulty air conditioning, poor maintenance of heating and cooling systems, and gas emissions from carpeting, paints, paneling, computers, plastic, furniture, etc... all contribute to this ever growing problem.

THE MAJOR AIR POLLUTANTS

CARBON MONOXIDE ( CO )
  • Colorless, odorless, and poisonous
  • After inhalation, the CO molecules enter the blood stream via the lungs. They bind with red blood cells, preventing them from picking up Oxygen. Lack of cellular oxygenation can result in dizziness, headaches, fatigue, or ultimately, death.
  • Most commonly created by automobile engines, and even wood burning stoves.
CARBON DIOXIDE ( CO2 )

  • As we use Oxygen, we generate Carbon Dioxide with every exhale. The good news is, plants that use photosynthesis, take in the Carbon Dioxide and excrete Oxygen (good).
  • The concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere is on the rise as a result of the increase in the burning of fossil fuels.
  • Because CO2 is a greenhouse gas, the more of it that is in the atmosphere, the warmer the climate will become. i.e. global warming.
CHLOROFLUOROCARBONS ( CFCs )

  • Used widely in industry, especially in refrigerant and air conditioning systems.
  • When released into the atmosphere, all CFCs rise into the stratosphere, and through a series of chemical reactions, the ozone becomes depleted, allowing in harmful UV radiation. This increases the incidence of skin cancers and other related problems.
HAZARDOUS AIR POLLUTANTS ( HAPs )

  • General class of chemicals that can cause serious health and environmental effects. (cancer, birth defects, nervous system disorders, and even death.)
  • Most are produced in chemical plants, by diesel emissions, etc...
  • Examples of these chemicals are :
Acrolein, Formaldehyde, Acetaldehyde, Beryllium, Arsenic, and others.

LEAD

  • Highly toxic metal
  • No longer in gasoline or consumer products, but there are still large amounts in the environment such as lead paint, lead piping, and lead contaminated dust and soil from years of lead emission.
  • For more information:
National Lead Information Center http://www.epa.gov/lead/nlic.htm

OZONE ( O3 )

  • Is a form of oxygen, having three atoms rather than two. Is toxic and damaging to our health, environment, trees, and crops.
  • Health problems caused by Ozone exposure are breathing and lung related.
PARTICULATE MATTER

  • Any type of solid material in the air in the form of dust, smoke, or vapor which can remain suspended for a long amount if time.
  • Affects EVERYONE! City people: heavy traffic and industrial pollution. Farmers: soil dust, chemical vapors, fertilizer, etc...
  • Breathing in these particulates can be very dangerous to your health, possibly resulting in respiratory or heart problems.
  • Particulates can also pick up other toxic elements such as metals, aerosols, etc...
There are TONS of pollutants floating around in the air you breathe. The above listed are just a few! Not that I want you to stop breathing, but just realize how toxic everyday life can be and the importance of cleansing your body of these harmful things.

More to come on toxins.....

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Optimal Health

Q: What are the few basic things you should do to achieve optimal health?

A:

1) As we covered in the previous discussion, a multivitamin is extremely important. They correct vitamin and mineral deficiencies that can contribute to a number of health concerns. Putting good whole foods into your body is like putting gas into your car. A multivitamin is like changing the oil. It just makes the vehicle run better. Sure, it'll keep running for a while, but left unattended to, you may find it breaking down when you least expect it! A multivitamin is not a replacement for real food. It simply supplies the nutrients that are virtually impossible in today's world to get through diet alone.

2) Cleanse your body. Detoxify. Flush out. Whatever you want to call it. At any given moment, your body is hosting more potentially lethal toxins than a nuclear power plant. These can come from your food ( pesticides, etc.) , air pollution, your water (fluoride, mercury, iron, lead, etc...more on this later), and another big one is the metal fillings you get from the dentist! The main component of these fillings is Mercury! Even today, dentists are still using mercury fillings under the name amalgam fillings. They are not a thing of the past like people seem to believe. Mercury is highly toxic and deadly! Even more so than lead! So, imagine what good having a mouth full of it is doing to your body! (More on this also to follow)
Getting rid of these toxins by doing a body cleanse can help you body function better, rejuvenate your entire being, and reduce your risks for almost ALL diseases and conditions. Later, I will delve further into the specific details of cleansing, benefits and options.

3) Diet. That four letter word. One of the most vulgar in the English language. A word of advice- DON'T DIET!!! It sets you up to fail, making your chances of gaining the weight back a lot greater. Not to mention it's hard to maintain a happy disposition when you're crunching on celery sticks and carrots. Let's first look at the word- diet....notice that it mainly consists of the word DIE. That's a sign of things to come if you are one of those fad dieters. So...instead of going on a DIEt, eat some LIVE foods, meaning those that live in nature i.e. fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean unprocessed meats. Live foods are untouched by the human hand or machine until it reaches your mouth. A good rule of thumb for healthy eating : If it doesn't exist in nature, don't eat it. Plain and simple- it's that easy. Now, if you can't skip out to the orchard and pluck your fruit right of the branch or hunt for your own food with your handmade hickory bow, I understand. The grocery is a more convenient option. If you can go organic, you should. They will be free of pesticides, waxes, etc.. If the cost of organic turns you off, regular produce is fine as long as you cleanse it thoroughly.

4) Exercise. Yes, you need to exercise. I'm sorry, but it's true. You can add years to your life and improve your appearance and self -esteem by doing this one thing. You don't have to be Mr. or Ms. Olympia, but move darn it! The health benefits that come from moderate exercise are numerous! More than most people realize! (More on this later)

These are the basic components of simple, natural health. It may seem like a huge adjustment from your current lifestyle, but it is well worth it. After time, it will become a way of life, ensuring you a lifetime filled with happiness and good health! :)

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Back to Basics

Beginning Health 101-

You NEED a multivitamin.

Yes. That's right. You NEED one. Now before you go saying that you are perfectly fine and dandy and you eat lots of meat and potatoes, and you get your fruits and veggies, just stop for a second. You may be getting by in your daily life with no daily multivitamin, but no matter how perfect your diet may be, you are in no way getting all of the nutrients your body needs to function at an optimal level. I mean, come on- who wants to just barely scrape by when you can be living your life to the potential it was meant to?!

For starters, even if you do eat a nearly perfect diet, which I doubt many of you do, the food consumed by people in today's world is so processed and contaminated with pesticides, or genetically modified in some way, that you are missing out on key nutrients your body needs to survive! And that's not even including any of the junk "food" that people keep shoveling into their faces!

The point is- a good quality NATURAL multivitamin will ensure that your body is getting all it needs to operate at it's healthiest. So I'm sure you're thinking smugly to yourself, "Well I'm already a step ahead! I take my Centrum/One-A-Day/or whatever every day! I must be as healthy as they come!" Well, before you pat yourself on the back and reach for that next jelly-filled doughnut, let me fill you with some eye-opening facts....

1.) Do some research. You should know what kind of multivitamin you are putting into your body. Chances are if you are or have taken vitamins in the past and just didn't seem to notice any difference, YOU WEREN'T TAKING A QUALITY ONE!!!! Keep in mind that most cheaper, mass produced vitamins you can buy from Walmart, Shopko, or wherever, are SYNTHETIC! i.e.- Centrum, One-A-Day, Equate, etc...

But they're cheaper you say? Exactly! You get what you pay for. Being synthetic (man-made), your body cannot reap the full benefits that it would from taking a natural vitamin supplement.

Strange yet sad fact- There was an interview done with sanitation workers a while back, discussing how while in the sewers, they find TONS of these little multivitamins with the names still imprinted on them. (!!!) So....assuming that we know how these vitamins get into these sewers, that leads me to believe that your body can't be absorbing much, if any, of them, if the tiny little brand name imprint is still on them after all that. Gross. And sad.

So, they're cheaper, but they're just wasting your money.

There are synthetic vitamins and there are natural vitamins.

Synthetic vitamins usually give you very limited amounts of necessary nutrients. Usually only enough to get avoid getting diseases and what not. But, ironically, if you're not even absorbing any of it, what's the point?! Synthetic vitamins also have binders and filler which are components used to hold hold them together, mask unpleasant odors, make the exterior more appealing, etc. They are not always listed on the the label, but you should still know what to look for.

Binders: Give cohesive qualities to the powdered materials of the vitamin. A big one to watch out for is acacia (gum arabic) that has been declared by the FDA as GRAS ( Generally Recognized As Safe). It can cause mild to sever asthma attacks and rashes in asthmatics, pregnant women, and anyone prone to allergies. Other common binders are cellulose and ethyl cellulose, and on occasion lecithin and sorbitol.

Fillers: Are added to give the product bulk to make them a practical size for compression. sorbitol and cellulose are used occasionally. Some better brands may use Dicalcium Phosphate.

Other evil things you should watch for-

Lubricants: Used to keep the pills from sticking to the machine that punches them out.

Disintegrators: Added to facilitate the pill's breakup or disintegration after ingestion. examples- gum arabic, algin, alginate.

Colors: Make the pills more pleasing to look at.

Flavors and sweeteners: Only in chewable vitamins. examples- fructose, malt dextrins, sorbitol, maltose. Better brands may use sucrose.

Coating material: Protects the tablet from moisture. Hides unpleasant flavors or odors and makes them easier to swallow. Zein is a natural one derived from croen protein. Another is Brazil wax which comes from palm trees.

Drying Agents: Prevents water absorbing materials from picking up moisture during processing. Silica gel is very common.

Some cheaper varieties which shall remain unnamed, actually have some toxic elements such as aluminum, believed to be a major contributor to Alzheimers, as part of their "additional ingredients". And heck, some of them even throw in some extra totally unnecessary things like Nickel and Tin in their formulas. What on Earth do you need Nickel or Tin for?!?! Do your research.

Synthetic vitamins are made for longer shelf lifes and penny pinchers. Not for real people.

All I ask is for people to get off their high horse and pop a good natural multivitamin everyday. The benefits you will reap and also sow will be enormous. Give it a chance. The difference in multivitamins really comes down to the price you pay. Go with a cheaper one and you may save now, but you may end up paying for it down the road. And isn't your health worth it?
:)

Let's Begin!

First off, I would like to throw out the disclaimer that any advice and or opinions here on in are not intended to diagnose and or treat any illness, disease, or condition. The information given on this site should be taken at the reader's own discretion.

Getting that out of the way, I would like to say that this is my first blog (hurray!), and with this blog, I intend to inform, educate and answer questions that ordinary people (like you) may have about any health related issues. No subject is too taboo or outlandish, because what people need are ANSWERS!!! No more wondering how to drop those last few pounds, or maybe you have 100 to lose- Maybe you want to know the best natural treatments for a specific ailment. Want to know about how you're getting scammed by the pharmaceutical companies? Do you want to know how to live your best life? You are in the right place!

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