The SparkPeople Blog

What Nobody Tells You about Getting Back into Shape after Baby

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
8/26/2014  12:00:00 AM   :  7 comments   :  5,075 views

You often hear people talk about how having kids changes your entire life.  I have to agree, having been through it more than a few times over.  I have four children ranging in age from nine months to seven years, and although they are exhausting, they are equally wonderful.  Pregnancy was never a walk in the park for me, but I tried to do all of the right things--eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly and gain a healthy amount of weight.  Because of this, I assumed it would be pretty easy for me to bounce back into shape after baby arrived.  While that’s been true to a certain extent, there have definitely been some surprises along the way.

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Message Board and Site Header Changes Launched Today!

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
8/25/2014  10:00:00 AM   :  18 comments   :  747 views

Hi, everyone! We launched a few changes to the site today that we wanted to let you know about:
  • An improved and cleaner design for our Message Boards and Team Message Boards
  • An improved and cleaner design for our SparkPoints, SparkMail, and some other pages
  • Moved ''Today on SparkPeople'' from the right side of the site to the top right of the site, in a new dropdown
  • Added a link on the very top right of the site to your Account Settings, SparkPoints, and SparkPage
We hope you like these changes! We made them to help new members easily navigate the site. We also think they are great additional features for our current members. About a month ago, we surveyed our SparkTeam leaders about the Board changes to the Community Team, and we got some great input that was incorporated into the design. This included creating more of a visual separation between posts. Additionally, we heard a lot of feedback that the ''Today on SparkPeople'' features were important to you, so we now have them available on every page of the site. SparkGuy, Coach Jen, and the rest of our team truly do appreciate the feedback and support of our members, and we love using this feedback as a tool to help us continually upgrade and improve your SparkPeople experience.
 
If you can’t find something or have any other feedback, please post a comment below. Thanks!
 
The SparkPeople Team

Do Diet Sodas Really Help with Weight Loss?

By: , – Holly Wyatt, MD
8/18/2014  12:00:00 AM   :  8,032 views

One of the questions that I am often asked by my patients at the Anschutz Center for Health and Wellness is this: ''Can I drink diet soda and still lose weight?'' The follow-up question is usually: ''Is it true that diet beverages can make me feel hungrier?''
 
That’s when I know that they are seeing some of the same confusing headlines about diet beverages that I often see in the local and national news media, and even more frequently on the web.
 
What I love about my job is that I get to try to find answers to some of these puzzling nutrition questions. To that end, my colleagues and I just completed a study that asked the question: what effect do diet beverages have on weight loss? We were surprised by the answers, which makes me think that you may be, too. 

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Happier Meals: Cool School Lunch Strategies

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
8/18/2014  12:00:00 AM   :  4 comments   :  14,709 views

As summer starts winding down and back-to-school shopping begins, lunch boxes and supplies might be on your list. What can you do to help ensure that your kids eat the healthy food you pack instead of trading it for chips and cookies--or even throwing it away? There are lots of cool accessories to make lunchtime more exciting. Looking for ideas to turn boring carrot sticks into a food they won’t want to turn down? Here are some of our picks to brighten up lunch and make healthy eating fun! 

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New Changes to SparkPeople Articles and Resource Pages!

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
8/12/2014  10:00:00 AM   :  29 comments   :  9,108 views

Hi, everyone! We'd like to make a quick announcement about some changes we made to a few SparkPeople features today. Hopefully you're loving the new look and feel of the site! Here is what we changed and what you can expect:
  • Streamlined Articles and Resource Center Pages. We gave our Article and other Resource Center pages an upgrade. You’ll find bigger images, a cleaner format, and some other small design adjustments on these pages.
  • Get SparkPoints for Re-Reading Articles. Due to popular demand, we now let you get SparkPoints for articles you read in the past. We know sometimes our members like a refresher on certain article topics, and we wanted to give you points for re-reading!
  • Refreshed Fitness Library with Animated Gifs. We completed a huge enhancement of our animated exercise demonstrations. We have new, clearer photos and animated gifs, plus a cool new search tool that lets you filter exercises by experience level, equipment, and muscles worked.
  • A Bigger, Better "Share" Bar. The ''share'' bar on our articles and videos and resource pages has been improved to allow quicker sharing, and we fixed a bug to make sure you get SparkPoints when you share our content.
 
We hope these changes enhance your SparkPeople experience and make it even easier for you to reach your goals! Some things have been moved around, so if you have a hard time finding something, just shoot a quick note to support@sparkpeople.com for help. Thanks for your support, and Keep Sparking!

The SparkPeople Team

It’s Here! The Best App for Eating Better On the Go

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
8/11/2014  12:00:00 AM   :  8 comments   :  5,007 views

Over the years, we've learned that some of our best ideas and most useful tools come from you, our SparkPeople community. A few months ago when we were releasing the newest updates to our Calorie Counter and Healthy Recipes apps, we asked our members (that’s you!) how we could improve our tools to better fit them into your lives. You responded with honest and insightful ideas that are helping us decide which tools we want to work on next.

There was one suggestion in particular that we kept hearing: You wanted a simple app that could pull up the nutrition information for any food, without the food tracker component. That's it--just a streamlined, one-use app that wouldn't take up much space on your phone, but would still be able to access SparkPeople's extensive food database to deliver quick nutrition information on demand. So, we decided to give the people what they want! Today, we're proud to announce the final product: the SparkPeople Nutrition Lookup App.

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