Diet

How to Make Healthy Fast Food Choices

You've read the studies that say a typical fast food meal exceeds the recommended daily allowance of calories, sodium, and saturated fat, and you know that eating fast food regularly can lead to lasting problems--obesity, clogged arteries, heart problems, etc. But you also know that finding time to prepare meals is difficult.

Johnny needs to be at baseball practice, and Susie is late for dance class. The baby is sick, and you have to squeeze in a visit to the doctor. Jim is working late, and you have a book club meeting. Sometimes a family sit-down meal is simply out of the question. But that doesn't mean that you can't make the best of a bad situation and help your family make healthy fast food choices.

Changing Times

It may come as a surprise to some people, but it is actually possible to eat a healthy meal at a fast food restaurant. Owners of fast food chains know the bulk of their customers don't seem concerned about the dangers of consuming a fat-filled burger, but there is an ever growing segment of the American public that is looking for a healthy choice in fast food. And the chains are listening. Changes in fast food menus are creating a stir. Items such as soups, salads and yogurt are becoming more and more common. Healthy choices are appreciated by the clientele. As the chains realize this, choices for healthy eating will increase.

Sometimes You Simply Can't Resist

Although it's best to not indulge at all, there are times when the aroma of fries and grilled meat seem irresistible. If you find it necessary to give in to this overwhelming temptation, remember one simple rule--moderation in all things. An order of fries by itself probably won't kill you, it's the cumulative effect of eating an excess of grease, calories, and fats on a regular basis that could be detrimental to your health. Treat yourself occasionally, but only occasionally!

Study Dietary Guides 

The nutritional content of items on a fast food restaurant's menu is available. A small request and a little research will lead you to lists comparing calories, fat, percentages of saturated fat, and other useful information about everything you can buy at most fast food restaurants. Examining the lists will help you determine how much of what item will help you maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Extras May Be Detrimental to Your Health

Just because you order a salad don't think you've made the ultimate in healthy choices. Consider what you add to the salad. If you pour a ton of high-calorie dressing on and top it off with bacon bits, you've defeated the purpose. Your "healthy" salad may end up being a worse choice than a burger with fries. Make sure your salad has fresh vegetables. Use grilled, not fried, toppings and small portions of light or fat free dressing.

Pay Attention to Portion Size

When eating at a fast food restaurant, staying healthy isn't always your primary reason for being there; it is convenience that people love. But when you see the scrumptious images prominently displayed "for your convenience" on a glossy surface, it's tempting to order large portion of whatever looks the best to you at that moment. After all, if a quarter pounder is good, a half pounder will be twice as good, and while you're at it, a double order of fries should hit the spot. Control yourself and pay attention to portion size; you'll be glad you did when you step on the scale the next day, or when the test results come back from your next physical exam.

Bad Choices Build Over Time, So Do Good Choices

Just as your arteries become clogged after years of consuming the wrong things on a regular basis, you can maintain your health by watching what you eat, and getting enough exercise. Even eating fast food occasionally won't hurt, providing you do it in moderation and pay attention to what you're eating. Making the right choices will pay off in the long run. The effects of bad choices are cumulative, but so are the effects of better choices.

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Why do people in the Mediterranean live longer?

 Following the Mediterranean lifestyle is one of the biggest craze these days. A number of studies have proven that living like the people of Southern Italy, Greece, Turkey, Spain and Cyrpus will make you live longer. One such study is the one conducted by The American Association of Retired Persons which shows that people who follow a diet close to the Mediterranean diet have 20% less chance of dying of cancer and heart attack. Following a Mediterranean lifestyle is actually not that hard, and you can actually practice it even when you’re in America. Here are more reasons on why you’d want to follow the lifestyle practiced in the Mediterranean area. 

PEOPLE ENJOY EACH OTHER

The people of the Mediterranean are naturally friendly. They talk to their neighbors, invite them over and have simple meals with them. A good relationship with the people around you have proven to be a great way to get rid of stress, and this in turn gives you a better outlook in life. One of the main causes of a lot of illnesses is stress, and it’s nice to know that something as easy as being friendly will save you from a lot of sickness.

THEY EAT WELL

The Mediterranean diet is one of the most talked- about topics in the world of fitness and health today. Studies have shown that this may be the healthiest eating pattern in the world, which also contributes to the long life people live in the Mediterranean. The countries around the Mediterranean basin, especially Greece, are popular for using olive oil.  They rarely use butter or margarine, and olive oil is the main fat source for these people. Extra virgin olive oil is a great source of monounsaturated fat, which means it doesn’t stick to your arteries like other kind of oil does. This leads to lesser chances of heart attacks, which is also caused fatty foods. 

THEY HAVE GREAT WEATHER

The areas around the Mediterranean basin have short winters and long summers. This means people get to have more time to enjoy the sun, which they use for sitting near the ocean while enjoying a bowl of salad or a cup of coffee. Because they have longer summer, these countries are also abundant in fresh fruits and vegetable. In fact, this is what mostly consist their diet. Fruits and vegetable are known to have great health benefits, and this is another reason why people in the Mediterranean get to live more.

WINE IS A PART OF THEIR DIET

The people living in the Mediterranean have red wine as a part of their diet. Red wine contains a great percentage of polyphenols, which is a great antioxidant. Drinking moderate amounts of red wine often has also found to decrease the chances of developing coronary heart diseases-- virtually unheard of in the Mediterranean. There’s also a reason why the people in this area seems to age longer. Resveratrol, a component found in the skin of red grapes, which is the main ingredient of red wine, has been found out to reduce the effects of aging—both physically and physiologically.  

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10 Steps on Improving Your Metabolism

Feeling sluggish and low on energy? Do you feel like you work and work toward your weight loss goal and never seem to make any dramatic improvement? You could be suffering from a slow metabolism.

Diet For Burning Fat And Exercise To Make It Happen

Aside from diet for burning fat, working out regularly is just a begin to get in shape. Your key point when you exercise should be losing body fat, and you can't lose it just from burning calories. When we exercise, our bodies will start burning calories, but the calories that are burned are the calories from carbohydrates in our system. Also, think of the calories that are burned from carbohydrates as your energy calories.

During aerobic working out, your body goes through a number of stages before it reaches the point where you are burning body fat. Weight exercise is the key to burning body fat at rest. The calories that you are burning during weight exercise work outs are mostly calories from carbohydrates (meaning you have to eat even additional calories for each day for energy), but the calories you burn at break or sleep are regularly calories from fat.

Lots of people underestimate the time it takes to burn calories and fat. If your target is to burn fat, appear to make minor changes in your diet plan. One thing with your fat burning diet and workouts is that you have to create certain changes to create sure you are essentially burning fat and not lean muscle. Weight training for fat burning is a great alternative to cardio and will provide you better, extra visible results.

A big mistake that a lot of persons create trying to burn fat - rather than getting leaner, they lose a combination of both muscle and fat. You must burn body fat, not muscle. Use compound workouts, use heavy weight, keep your reps in the 5-8 range, 3-5 sets per working out weight train 2-3 times a week.

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Best Way To Cut and Burn Calories

How to Lose Calories

Losing weight is very difficult for many of us, but it ultimately boils down to numbers: Eat fewer calories to lose more pounds. If we could figure out how to lose calories, the pounds would quickly follow.

How to get a six pack without equipment

Web searches on “how to get a six pack" are very popular. This implies that there are a lot of people who want to trade their belly fat with lean six pack abs. If you are one of those people, chances are you have come across different solutions like fad diets, protein shakes, cosmetic surgeries, gym memberships, and different expensive abs-forming equipment.

Everything comes with a price these days; that includes achieving the body of your dreams. In fact, celebrities even spend thousands of dollars in hiring personal chefs to prepare muscle enhancing meals and personal fitness instructors to supervise their trainings. Since an average Joe could not afford such money-splurging rage, we often tend to give up and become obese. Fortunately there is a way to get a six pack without equipment and spending a dime, and this article will give you a few ideas.

#1 Edit your diet

Everything starts with what you put in your mouth. Making sure that you eat foods that do not contribute to more fat deposits will greatly increase your chances of getting a six pack.

Choose foods that are low in calories like raw fruits and vegetables and replace foods that contain high amount of fat. For example, scrape off the fatty portion of the meat including the skin before cooking them. Eat the lean portion only because this part contains fewer calories and higher amounts of protein.

#2 Do cardio training

Cardio exercises help burn a good percentage of fat deposits which would give way to the appearance of a six pack. However, most people think that cardio trainings are only done with treadmills and stair mills. The fact is there are a lot of cardio exercises that do not require equipment at all.

The concept behind these expensive exercise machines is based on physical activities. The machines are built to make it more convenient for us to exercise in the comfort of our home or in a public gym. So, instead of hopping on the machine, why not do the actual activities that are portrayed by these machines. For example, run an actual mile instead of using a treadmill or use the stairs instead of the elevator when going to work as a substitute to a stair mill.

#3 Do Flexibility exercises

Flexibility or stretching exercises help in warming up your muscles before strength training. Furthermore, they also help prevent muscle pains and promote muscle building as some balance poses require your muscles to work. Great flexibility exercises are Tai Chi and Yoga. These exercises also help you burn more calories.

#4 Eat lots of protein-rich foods

 Foods that are rich in protein like lean meat, certain nuts, and egg white could greatly help you build muscles on the abs. In fact, the primary function of protein is to build and repair the muscles. With that in mind, it is safe to say that the more protein you consume, the more muscles you build.

 #5 Strengthen your core

Abs specific exercises like crunches, floor leg raise, plank pose, and body twists are great exercises that target the three major muscles in the abdomen. These workouts do not need any equipment since you can perform it by yourself, anytime, and anywhere. Just follow the proper breathing techniques to maximize the benefits you’ll get from doing such exercise.

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Have a Heart Healthy Thanksgiving!

It's almost time for Thanksgiving - a time when families and friends get together to enjoy a bountiful feast. Holidays can be wonderful, but they can bring added stress and excesses.

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