Friday, February 03, 2012
Elevated risks for heart disease, liver failure and obesity are among the claims researchers are making a bid for stricter government regulation of sugar.
The toxicity of sugar to the human body and its detriment on society compares to alcohol and tobacco, according to a commentary in the current issue of the journal Nature by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, Yahoo News reports.
The worldwide obese population now greatly outnumbers the undernourished, according to the World Health Organization, and researchers propose taxes and age limits on all foods and drinks that include added sugar, and a ban on those products' sales in or near schools.
At issue among some scientists is how much the consumption of added sugar taxes the liver, causing fatty liver disease, and ultimately leading to insulin resistance, the underlying causes of obesity and diabetes, according to Yahoo News.
As economists and scientists debate the impact of high added sugar consumption, the report cites one dauntingly clear reality: chronic diseases related to diet such as heart diseases, diabetes and some cancers—for the first time in human history—kill more people than infectious diseases, according to the United Nations.
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Today, there were many good choices that I consciously made. I got up early and prepared my post-workout shake, breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner, so I would be prepared to eat healthy all day. I did TurboFire HIIT 15 in the living room because I knew I wouldn't have much time to exercise later in the day. I made sure to take my multivitamin and other supplements (flaxseed oil, Super B Complex, Vitamin D). I brought a big bottle of water to chug all day.
There were also some accidental good fitness choices I made today. For example, I forgot that today was Tuesday and not Wednesday. Usually on Wednesdays, the parking lots nearest to my work are full and I am forced to park in the furthest parking lot. Well, this morning I thought it was Wednesday only to walk into the closest parking lot and find plenty of spots. Duh, it's Tuesday! However, my mistake meant a longer walk into work in the refreshing morning air. The elevators in my building are also SUPER SLOW, so I prefer to take the stairs because they are faster. So after my long walk from the parking lot, I got in a good four flights up to my desk. I had to rush to finish a project that my boss threw me under the bus about, so I was frantic running around and quickly finishing things. It's not even 11:30 but I have definitely accidentally burned some good cals!
I have started thinking recently about the things that really help me to stay on track, eat healthy, and exercise. I thought I would share them with you in case they are things that would help you, too! I abandoned them, for some reason, this time around. But today reminded me why they work so well for me!
1. Do cardio in the morning. First of all, there are numerous studies that show that doing cardio on an empty stomach helps to torch more fat. Second of all, your workout gets done before the day gets in your way of exercising. Third of all, you feel great and energized all day, full of endorphins before you ever reach work. Who wouldn't want to be happy and energized first thing in the morning?
2. Eat a large breakfast. There is the old adage, eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper. I firmly believe there is something to that, at least for me, anyway. The bigger a breakfast I eat in the morning (high protein, moderate carb, moderate fat), the better I am able to control myself all day long, and the more energy I have. Some days, I'll eat upwards of 500 good calories just at breakfast! This works well if you exercise first thing, too, in order to replenish your stores!
3. Don't be super restrictive. Don't think of your eating and exercise plans as a "diet" but as a healthy lifestyle. Eat food because it will provide you nourishment, and exercise because it's fun and makes you feel good, not because you need to be a certain size. And if you want to eat a piece of cake or pizza, do it! Just know that everything is about balance, and that 99% of the time you want to put things into your body that will make it perform better.
4. PUSH yourself. We all have limits, but I will bet you $100 they are A LOT higher than we think they are. For example, last night I ran at 5.5, incline 1, on the treadmill for 2 miles. I usually do around 4.2. However, I DIDN'T DIE. And actually, my breathing normalized itself and I was able to get into a tempo. I then did some intervals, running as fast as 6.6. I have NEVER run a 6.6 on the treadmill. I could have, I just never pushed myself to that level, to see how hard I could go. As Jillian Michaels says, if you don't faint, puke, or die, KEEP GOING!! It's true. We're stronger than we think.
5. What everyone else is doing doesn't matter. So what if everyone else in your household is unhealthy. So what if they eat chips or cookies or oil-popped popcorn. Who cares if they look at your food funny. Do whatever makes YOU happy. Just because other food is there doesn't mean you have to eat it. On the flip side, who cares about the fitness guru doing everything perfectly, giving up coffee and eating weird sounding food that looks like baby vomit. You don't have to be perfect. You just have to do the things that are right FOR YOU. Stick to your convictions and always try you best. Be open to new ideas and suggestions, but don't quit just because you aren't the eptiome of good health.
Those are my thoughts for now. I am feeling better, more like my prior fitness self. That is so encouraging!
Friday, January 20, 2012
I have been in a funk lately (due to gaining 20 pounds, living with my inlaws, and stress due to finances and wedding planning). I've been struggling since January 1, 2012 to get back into a program and start losing weight. However, I have just NOT been able to make it stick like I have in the past, and I keep reverting back to my bad eating and (non-)exercising habits. The other day, I was doing GREAT with my food all day long, and then I got home from a long day and ate EVERYTHING in sight with my fiance right there beside me.
So, I have decided that I need to start blogging about each day to create some accountability and to get my thoughts down. Hopefully it will be therapeutic and motivational.
I have decided that today's blog should be about things we can do to stop ourselves from eating junk. Whether we are at a party with tempting food, or living in a home with nasty junk lying around (I live with my in-laws and they do NOT eat healthy). Please feel free to add to the list!
1. Read some SparkPeople articles (or other online nutrition or fitness articles).
2. Blog! Keep those fingers busy and talk about WHY you want those nasty treats. Maybe you didn't get enough sleep, maybe you didn't eat enough during the day, or maybe you're using food as a method of making you feel "better." Write about why you want the food, and maybe that will help you pinpoint triggers.
3. Drink 8 oz of water. You're probably just thirsty! Drinking the water might also make you feel too full to indulge.
4. Go somewhere food isn't. Go outside for a walk, take a bath, go to the library, or start that project you've been meaning to start. Just go somewhere where you aren't surrounded by food or thinking about food. That means LEAVE THE KITCHEN!
5. Go to the gym. Similar to #4 but I find that even if I'm at the gym for only a few minutes, I get inspired by the people around me. So many people are in there working hard and trying to stay fit.
6. Create a motivational board. Post pictures of sayings you like, photos of enviable bodies, and other pictures that symbolize the journey you are on. Post it somewhere you look everyday. Maybe even post it on the fridge, so you have to look at it each time you're reaching for the gallon of ice cream.
7. Call a friend or family member. Reaching out to another person will make you feel better and will keep you from mindlessly snacking. Maybe even get a support buddy that you call whenever you feel weak, make them your hotline and vice versa.
8. Chew a piece of gum - it will keep your mouth busy and the mint works as an appetite suppresant.
9. Play a game on your gaming console - like Wii sports or something on Kinect. You'll be moving, burning calories, not eating, AND having fun with you family.
10. Take up a new hobby, such as sewing, knitting, playing an instrument, puzzles, sports, etc. It should keep your mind engaged and be enjoyable.
My goal starting today is to do one of these things when I feel like eating junk food.
I have planned my food out today. Later my fiance and I are going to the movies - no popcorn for me. I will bring a bottle of water and maybe a healthy snack if I'm hungry. I plan to eat dinner BEFORE the movie, chicken stir-fry (no rice).
Friday, August 13, 2010
I was doing ChaLEAN Extreme for about a week, in combination with TurboJam, and I was seeing amazing results. Even though the weight wasn't flying off (though it was coming off) my body just felt tighter and smaller. It was wonderful. When I got TurboFire in the mail I was PUMPED. This was sure to get these stubborn ten pounds off my body. However, after the first few days of doing the program, my weight hadn't budged and I felt chunkier than ever. What had changed? Well, I had stopped doing ChaLEAN Extreme weight lifting because I thought it would be too intense on top of doing TurboFire. But my body was clearly unhappy and hunkering down with those pounds of fat. Sooo, I decided to add ChaLEAN Extreme back in, and lost half a pound the next day!
If you want to lose weight, you've got to LIFT weights. It's as simple as that! Your body will be a tight, lean, fat burning machine, and it will burn even MORE calories when you're doing your cardio. This was something I didn't do as much when I was on Sparks a few years back, and it took me a long time to get the body I want (a body that was till pretty soft, considering how much I weighed).
The secret to weight loss = lift weights. It's easy and relatively inexpensive (ChaLEAN shows you how to use your own body for resistance, in case you can't afford heavier weights). Just do it! You'll be AMAZED at the results.
Monday, August 09, 2010
Eating healthy during the week is cinch- all of my meals are pre-planned and there is no peer pressure to eat other, unhealthy foods. However, when the weekend comes it's harder to control what I'm eating: especially with my boyfriend. He doesn't eat healthy, to say the very least. This weekend I asked him if he would consider taking a multivitamin and he said, "What, do I look like I'm 50 years old?" This coming from a guy who eats once or twice a day, and usually something fattening like Chicken Parmesan or pizza.
Anyway, of course he wants to eat at all of these bad places: Gennaro's in Quincy, Massachusetts (a fantastic Italian place) and a little breakfast spot down the street from my house. Needless to say, not too many healthy options at either place! I told him we could go- we rarely get to spend time together (we're both law students that live apart) and I know that in the future I will be faced with eating at places like this.
At Gennaro's, I got a Pasta Fagiole soup and a side salad with tuna. Thinking I was safe with soup, when we got it it was the richest soup I have ever seen (more like a pasta dish with a little broth thrown it!) It was DELICIOUS but I could actually SEE some of the grease in it. SOOO, I only ate half of it and then I ate the entire salad and half of the tuna salad. The next morning at breakfast, I ordered eggs whites, wheat toast and homefries. I ate all the eggs, one slice of toast, and only a few homefries (which were AMAZING!, completely homemade).
I realized that IT'S OKAY to only eat a portion of your meal when you go out. I grew up with the "clean your plate" mentality. But this weekend I abandoned it and only ate what filled me up, making sure to drink plenty of water between bites. I was FULL but not STUFFED, and I stayed on track!
On Friday I went to the 99 and ordered their teriyaki sirloin with snow peas and jasmine rice. Delicious! Shared a desert with the BF, only had a few bites though!
Lesson learned: only having a few bites of something is a way to stay on track but still enjoy some of those foods you love!
How do you conquer your weekends?
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