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Posts Tagged health

10 Reasons Why You Need to Stay Fit

Gisele Yoga

In order to be healthy and vibrant we need to have a solid diet and exercise regimen. We can’t just eat whatever we want and workout to negate it. Rather, you need to eat well and exercise. There is a reason you think of fruits and vegetables as well as being active when the New Year comes around or when you need to “detox” after a vacation. It is because that is what our bodies crave in order to function optimally. I compiled 10 reasons why it is important to keep active. Hopefully they will come to mind the next time you are too lazy to get off the couch!

1. Happy Heart

Every day, the approximately 10 pints of blood in your body travel many times through about 60,000 miles of blood vessels that branch and cross, linking the cells of our organs and body parts. Our heart is the key muscle in this system, responsible for moving blood throughout the body. In order to keep our heart healthy, we must exercise it regularly. Try incorporating interval training the next time you go for a run or hit the treadmill. You should be doing both steady state cardio (i.e. running for 45 minutes), and interval training (i.e. sprinting for 45 seconds and recuperating for 30 seconds then repeating 5-10 times) during your cardio sessions.

2. Healthier Sense of Well Being

We all want to look and feel our best, don’t we? When we exercise we get a surge of endorphins, the feel good hormones and natural stress and pain fighters. Exercise is a natural prescription for anxiety and depression.

3. Better Body Image

Staying in your best shape also helps your body image. When you are able to look in the mirror and like who is looking back at you, you preform better in the workplace, have more self-confidence, and are more fun to be around.

4. Improved Body Composition

A healthy body composition doesn’t just make you look good in clothes, but it also has several benefits for your well-being. Exercise reduces visceral fat and increases lean muscle mass. Visceral fat is the “dangerous” fat that surrounds our organs, and is linked to diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease. Not only will you be healthier, but you will look better too!

6. It’s Fun

Who doesn’t need a little fun in their life? There are countless ways to get moving, I’m sure you can find something that intrigues you. You can make it social by exercising with friends, family or by meeting new friends. Or, just enjoy that much needed solo time. The important thing is to get out there and do it, whatever it may be.

7. Increased Energy

Are you too tired to exercise? Believe it or not, exercising will increase your energy. Physical activity delivers oxygen and nutrients to your tissues and helps your cardiovascular system work more efficiently. When your heart and lungs work more efficiently, you have more energy to go about your daily life.

cardio21

8. Better Sleep

Exercise can help you fall asleep and stay asleep. There’s not much more to it than that! Just don’t exercise too late in the evening, otherwise, it will have the opposite effect. 

9. Superior Sex Life

Sometimes sex is the last thing on our minds, especially when we’re feeling down on ourselves. One way to turn that frown upside down and turn up the heat in the bedroom is to increase your activity level. Women who exercise regularly can experience enhanced arousal. Whereas men who exercise regularly are less likely to have problems with erectile dysfunction than are men who don’t exercise.

10. Enhanced Immune System

An apple a day keeps the doctor away, well same goes for exercise. It promotes circulation, which allows the cells and substances of the immune system to move through the body freely and do their job efficiently.

References:
The benefits of physical activity. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/health/index.html. Accessed July 2, 2013.
2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. http://www.health.gov/paguidelines/guidelines/default.aspx. Accessed July 2, 2013.
Armstrong S, et al. Social connectedness, self-esteem, and depression symptomatology among collegiate athletes versus nonathletes. Journal of American College Health. 2009;57:521.
Peterson DM. Overview of the benefits and risks of exercise. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed July 2, 2013.
Hannan JL, et al. Beneficial impact of exercise and obesity interventions on erectile function and its risk factors. The Journal of Sexual Medicine. 2009;6(suppl 3):254.
Hamilton LD, et al. The roles of testosterone and alpha-amylase in exercise-induced sexual arousal in women. Journal of Sexual Medicine. 2008;5:845.
Laskowski ER (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. July 2, 2013.

Lorin’s New You Strategy #4

Lorin’s New You Strategy #4

Body-Detox

Keep Your System Clean

There is no denying that we live in an ever-increasing toxic world. We are constantly exposed to toxins, chemicals, and carcinogens (cancer causing substances). Many of the toxins abundant in the environment today did not exist 30 years ago, including certain pesticides, herbicides, and industrial chemicals that can enter our bodies through the food, water, and air supplies. Formerly nutritious foods have been denatured to the point that they have very little benefit, and air and water have become dangerously polluted. Personal care products are not regulated by the government and aren’t required to conduct health studies or pre-market testing of the chemicals even though everyone uses them.

What is even more staggering is exposure to the toxic substances begins before we are even born via the placenta. In a 2004 study lead by the Environmental Working Group in collaboration with Commonweal, on average 287 chemicals were found in umbilical cords of 10 babies in US hospitals. They found that of the 287 chemicals 180 cause cancer in humans or animals, 217 are toxic to the brain and nervous system and 208 cause birth defects or abnormal development in animal tests. The combination of these carcinogens have never been tested.

Toxins can become trapped in our body’s organs and tissues, which over time can negatively impact health, reduce vitality and eventually contribute to the development of chronic diseases. Our body’s have the ability to detoxify on their own, however, as the toxicity of modern life increases, the needs to detoxify are also increased. Sadly, our body’s ability to detoxify hasn’t accelerated at the same pace and therefore gets backed up and we become toxic.

How do you know if you are toxic?

Do you identify with any of the following concerns:

  1. Lack of energy: fatigue, frequent afternoon slump, or always tired.
  2. Digestive issues: bloating, gas, food allergies, leaky gut syndrome, IBS/IBD, or constipation.
  3. Weight fluctuations: easily gain weight, can’t loose weight even if you follow a healthy/clean diet and exercise,or can’t keep on weight.
  4. Mental clarity and mood: foggy mind, difficulty concentrating, or frequent mood swings.
  5. Immunity issue: seasonal allergies, colds and viruses every year, congestion, or mucus.
  6. Deeper health challenges: skin breakouts (redness, rashes), muscle pain and joint stiffness, bad breath and body odor)

If you have or experience any of the above symptoms, then it is time to give your body some TLC. Please read on to see what you can do.

11 Reasons to Detox

There are several reasons to detox. When done in a healthy, controlled environment following a reputable program, cleaning out the gunk can provide numerous health benefits. Here’s 11:

  1. Remove toxins, chemicals, pesticides, herbicides, and carcinogens from the body
  2. Prevent chronic disease
  3. Enhance immune system function
  4. Lose weight
  5. Slow premature aging
  6. Improve quality of life
  7. Increase energy
  8. Improve skin quality
  9. Mental and emotional clarity
  10. Restore balance to our body’s systems
  11. Enhance digestive system and improve nutrient assimilation

Keep Calm and Go Detox!

If you want to be healthy, you must live like a healthy person. This may seem like a logical statement but how many people do you know exude health? In order to enjoy health and vigor of body, mind, or spirit, it is critical to remove anything that could hinder this from our lifestyles. Okay, this may sound good in theory but if we were to try to rid our lives of all the sources of toxins it would be nearly impossible. So what do we do? My answer is simple: follow the good ol’ 80/20 rule and participate in a detox program 1-4 times a year to give your body the break it needs and a chance to repair and rejuvenate. Done and done.

When a new client comes to see me, a common recommendation is for them to try a 14 or 21 day detox program. The reasoning behind my recommendation is the fact that we several of the symptoms I see are caused by a toxin overload. As you saw above, fatigue, weight loss resistance, brain fog, allergies, digestive disturbances are all rooted in a toxic environment.

When I think of a “detox” several words come to mind. Some are positive and some are not. Sadly, the most popularized detoxes are associated with the words: hunger, liquid, juice, water, headaches, fatigue, and boredom. What if I told you detoxing doesn’t have to have a negative connotation? I happen to know of a fabulous program that is 14 or 21 days depending on your needs. My clients have associated the following words with the program: easy, fun, tasty, energizing, freeing, healthy, and thinning. For more information please click here.

keep calm and go detox

 

If you aren’t ready to dive head first into a detox (although I highly recommend it) you can start with the following:

START HERE:

  • Consume naturally detoxifying, liver-boosting foods and drinks. Ginger, lemon, leafy greens, cayenne pepper, dandelion tea, parsley, cilantro, and milk thistle are all great for this purpose.

    Get a proper amount of water in your system (1/2 your body weight in ounces of water, or more!); this will assist in flushing toxins out of your body. The solution to pollution is dilution!

  • Exercise at least 30 minutes a day. Exercise gets the circulation moving, helping to move toxins along, plus it primes your body and overall health.
  • Consume probiotics every day. You can find probiotics in foods like kombucha, kefir, yogurt, sauerkraut, miso soup, tempeh, and kimchi. I also recommend my clients take a high quality probiotic, you can read more here.
  • Brush and scrape. Start dry brushing your body with a specific body brushing brush to get rid of dead skin cells that hold toxins. Our skin is the largest detoxifying organ so take care of it. Also start scrapping your tongue to help with immunity, digestive health and get rid of bad breath.
  • Start deep breathing to rid the toxins from your lungs.
    • Try it: Sit with your feet on the floor, hands resting on your legs and eyes closed. Breathe in through your nose for four counts, hold for four then exhale through your mouth for eight counts.
  • Consume whole, organic foods.
  • Keep your colon clean through colon hydrotherapy. You can increase immunity, bowel movements, nutrient assimilation, increase energy and kick start weight loss with colon hydrotherapy.

AVOID:

  • Medicines such as hormones, acid blockers and antibiotics
  • Polluted environments: air, water, strong chemicals and fumes, etc.
  • Artificial chemicals: colorings, flavorings and preservatives
  • Artificial sweeteners
  • Stop buying Processed foods
  • Non-organic meats
  • Cigarettes
  • All purpose cleaners
  • Chemical-laden skin care products. Use EWG- Skin Deep as a resource.

 

References:

Smith-Spangler, C., et al. 2012. Are organic foods safer or healthier than conventional alternatives? A systematic review. Annals of Internal Medicine, 157 (5), 348–66.

Environmental Working Group analysis of tests of 10 umbilical cord blood samples conducted by AXYS Analytical Services (Sydney, BC) and Flett Research Ltd. (Winnipeg, MB).

Skin Deep: The essential guide to what’s in the toiletries and cosmetics you use (Pat Thomas)

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23140444

Lorin’s New You Strategy #3

Lorin’s New You Strategy #3

Intermittent Fasting

Incorporate Intermittent Fasting

Okay, it may seem strange that a nutritionist is recommending you stay away from food, but trust me, it’s for your own good! Fasting, as it turns out, is associated with a number of health benefits that most people strive for such as: improved cardiovascular health, reduced cancer risk, improved hormone response and longevity.

In general we are an overfed, undernourished nation. Part the problem is the fact that we have constant access to whatever our little hearts desire at any given point of the day. When we are constantly eating, our bodies forgo much of their natural processes like repair, rejuvenation, and detoxification.

Now I am not advocating you stop your five to six small meals a day, or whatever it is that works best for you. However, it can’t hurt to give fasting a try if you are looking for increased health benefits or want to change your body composition. Intermittent fasting is an umbrella term that covers a wide array of fasting schedules. Generally, it involves cutting calories either a couple of days a week, every other day, or daily.

I know the last thing you need is another fad diet to keep track of. But don’t think of intermittent fasting as a diet but rather think of it as a lifestyle change. We are essentially mimicking the way our ancestors ate with this schedule. They didn’t have food readily available 24/7. Instead, they would eat for some days then fast until they were able to eat again.

Research

Research shows intermittent fasting produces several biochemical benefits. We are in total control of our health and by altering how much and how often we eat, we can dramatically alter how our body operates. How cool is that?

Science has confirmed there are many good reasons for fasting, including:

1. Positive effects on the hormones insulin, leptin, and as well as insulin sensitivity

  • Intermittent fasting helps reset your body to use fat as its primary fuel. When your body becomes adapted to burning fat instead of sugar, you dramatically reduce your risk of chronic disease.

2. Normalizing ghrelin levels

  • Ghrelin increases hunger.

3. Promoting human growth hormone (HGH) production

  • Fasting can raise HGH by as much as 1,300 percent in women, and 2,000 percent in men. HGH plays an important role in health, fitness, and slowing the aging process. It is also a fat-burning hormone, which helps explain why fasting is so effective for weight loss.

4. Lowering triglyceride levels and improving other biomarkers of disease

  • Interestingly, one recent study that included more than 200 individuals, found that fasting increased the participants’ low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL or “bad” cholesterol) and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL, the “good” cholesterol) by 14 percent and 6 percent, respectively.

5. Reducing oxidative stress

  • Fasting decreases the accumulation of oxidative radicals in the cell, and thereby prevents oxidative damage to cellular proteins, lipids, and nucleic acids associated with aging and disease.

6. Prevention of dementia

  • Ketones are released as a byproduct of burning fat, and ketones (not glucose) are actually the preferred fuel for your brain.
  • Also, intermittent fasting boosts production of a protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which promotes neural health and protects brain cells from changes associated with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
  • Research by Dr. Mark Mattson, a senior investigator for the National Institute on Aging, suggests that alternate-day fasting, can boost BDNF by anywhere from 50 to 400 percent, depending on the brain region.

7. Increases lifespan

  • Studies have also shown that decreasing calorie consumption by 30 to 40 percent (regardless of how it’s done) can extend life span by a third or more.

 Give it a GO!!

Okay so know you know why you should do it, but do you know how?

I came across www.jamesclear.com who has personally seen several health benefits from intermittent fasting as thus, has created a fabulous beginners guide on the subject. He also compiled some graphs based on three different schedules that are easy to use (see below).

Honestly, which one you choose is up to you. What works best with your schedule? What time of day can you afford to skip a meal? What is your favorite time to eat? Experiment to find what works best. And rememberconsult with your doctor first.

Let me know what works best for you. I’d love to hear about your experience! lorin@lovetolivenutrition.com.

 

Alternate Day Intermittent Fasting

 

Alternate Day Intermittent Fasting

Weekly Intermittent Fasting

 

Weekly Intermittent Fasting

Daily Intermittent Fasting 

 

Daily Intermittent Fasting

 

Make Sure You Are Fit to Fast

Avoid fasting if you meet any of the following criteria:

  1. Hypoglycemic or diabetic
  2. Living with chronic stress or have adrenal fatigue
  3. Cortisol dysregulation
  4. Pregnant or nursing mothers
  5. Struggle with or have struggled with an eating disorder

 

 

Resources:

American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. January 2005: 81(1); 69-73

American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. November 2009: 90(5); 1138-1143

http://www.ncrponline.org/Press_Rel/Rept_160_Press_Release.pdfInternational Journal of Obesity May 2011: 35, 714-727

International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism. December 2008;18(6):617-27

Eurekalert, Study finds routine periodic fasting is good for your health, and your heart, April 3, 2011.

http://jamesclear.com/the-beginners-guide-to-intermittent-fasting

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-intermittent-fasting-might-help-you-live-longer-healthier-life/?page=3

Lorin’s New You Strategy #2

Lorin’s New You Strategy #2

HIIT It Baby!

 HIIT Yourself Fit!!

 

Want to change your body? Looking for a way to spice up your workouts? Bored in the gym? Want to lose body fat? Want more energy? Short on time?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions then HIIT is for you! I incorporated HIIT (high intensity interval training) into my exercise routine about three years ago and I will never go back. I was absentmindedly looking at Pintrest and came across a photo with a killer workout and decided to give it a go. I tend to get bored easily in the gym so I constantly look for new things to try. Sure enough, after only one go, I was hooked. The endorphins gave me the equivalent of a runner’s high after only 12 minutes. Yes! 12 minutes! HIIT is an efficient way to exercise (typically lasting 12-15 minutes), which boosts your body’s ability to burn calories after your done working out. This “after burn” and can last hours- sometimes days – after an intense workout. The best part is, research supports this incredible way of training.

 

Add some weekly sessions of HIIT into your exercise routine to break monotony and finally see those changes you’ve been craving. I promise it is worth the effort. This new way of working out will challenge you, have you gasping for air and tempt you to give up. But don’t because it’s worth every last bead of sweat!

 

What is it?

Short bouts of intense exercise interrupted by a short rest intervals. For example, 60 seconds on, 120 seconds rest, or 50 seconds on 10 seconds rest. You can use anything really; a treadmill, elliptical, weights, weighted rope, kettle bells, dumbbells, barbells, or forgo equipment all together and use bodyweight.

Supportive Research

  1. Effectively burns fat
    • HIIT increases the size of your cell’s mitochondria (its fat burning furnace) by an amazing 35%, meaning a larger furnace in each cell and greater fat loss from your efforts.
    • A study from Laval University, found HIIT was nine times more effective for losing fat than steady-state cardio and showed substantial gains in aerobic and aerobic fitness.
    • The Journal of Obesity reported that 12 weeks of HIIT not only resulted in significant reductions in total abdominal, trunk, and visceral fat, but can also give you significant increases in fat-free mass and aerobic power.
  2. Improves cardiovascular health
    • A study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research found just six HIIT workouts performed over two or three weeks, each lasting just a few minutes, produced measurable improvements in key markers of cardiovascular health.
    • HIIT produces greater increases in maximal oxygen consumption, insulin sensitivity and blood vessel health than sustained aerobic training.
  3. Improves certain hormone responses
    • Boosts human growth hormone (HGH), aka the “fitness hormone.”
    • Research published in Cell Metabolism showed that when healthy but inactive people exercised intensely, it produced an immediate measurable change in their DNA. Specifically increasing the production of fat-busting enzymes.
    • Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise found that unfit but otherwise healthy middle-aged adults were able to improve their insulin sensitivity and blood sugar regulation after just six sessions of interval training.
    • A follow-up study from Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism also found that interval training positively impacted insulin sensitivity. In fact, the study involved people with full-blown type 2 diabetes, and just ONE interval training session was able to improve blood sugar regulation for the next 24 hours!
    • Carbohydrate use, blood lactate concentrations, adrenaline, cortisol and interleukin-6 were higher than during HIIT than continuous exercise.
  4. Increases energy production
    • HIIT has been shown to increase muscle mitochondrial ATP production and improve muscle endurance.
    • A single bout of low-volume HIIT can activate mitochondrial biogenesis (the process of replicating mitochondria within a cell, in order to increase ATP production in response to an increased demand for energy) and even double endurance capacity as compared with aerobic exercise.

Give HIIT a go!

Option #1:

50 seconds on and 10 seconds rest. Use a kettle bell and barbell. Choose a weight that is challenging.

  1. Warm up for 5-12 minutes
  2. Kettle bell swing (kettle bell)
  3. Plie squats with alternate leg side raise (barbell)
  4. Wood chops- Alternate (kettle bell)
  5. Front lunge with twist- Alternate (kettle bell)
  6. Squat press (barbell)
  7. **repeat**

Option #2:

  1. Warm up for 10 minutes
  2. 30 second sprint
  3. 30 second walking recovery
  4. Repeat 2-3 nine additional times for a total of 10 circuits
  5. Walk for 20-20 minutes at 50% of your maximum heart rate to cool down.

Option #3:

15 min HIIT

 

 

 

References:

ACSM Health and Fitness Journal, 18(5): 11-16. 2014

ACSM Health and Fitness Journal, 18(5): 17-24. 2014

American Journal of Physiology Endocrinology Metabolism, Published Online August 5, 2014.

Greatist.com

Journal of Obesity, vol 2012 (April 6, 2012).

Cell Metabolism, March 7, 2012: 15(3);405-411.

Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, Oct 2011.

Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism, January, 23, 2012. [Epub ahead of print]

The Guardian March 24, 2013.

Lorin’s 5 Strategies for a New You in 2015!

Young woman standing

 

Holidays check. Cookies check. Wine check. Good times double check! The holidays have come and gone, now it is time to get back on track. Yes, we’ve all made the useless New Year’s resolutions in the past that never come to fruition… “I will lose ten pounds this year. I will go to the gym five times a week. I will eat clean, whatever that means.” We even go as far as joining a new gym to give us the kick in the ass we need. But how many of us actually achieve our goals in the upcoming year? I have seen it year after year, once February comes around we fall off the wagon and find ourselves fist deep in a box of cookies with a new gym membership that hasn’t been used in days.

Well let me ask you this, what is the point? Why set yourself up for failure by setting unrealistic goals? Instead, how about taking baby steps towards building a healthier, sustainable lifestyle that is good for your body, mind and soul? In place of going balls to the wall then halting to a complete stop and throwing all your hard work out the window, practice moderation. Slow and stead y wins the race, remember? Lucky for you, you don’t need to look any further as I have compiled 5 simple strategies that do the trick. I do not want to overwhelm you so I will be adding one new strategy each Monday throughout the month of January. But like I said, why wait? Get started with my #1 strategy NOW!

 

 

  1.  Up the Ante with Lean Protein and Veggies/ Rethink Carbohydrate and Fat Timing
  2. HIIT Yourself Fit!

 

Lorin’s New You Strategy #1

Lorin’s New You Strategy #1

Healthy-Diet

Up the Ante with Lean Protein and Veggies/ Rethink Carbohydrate and Fat Timing

Okay this is obvious right? But how many of you feel like your diet is a-okay? How many of you sleep like a baby 7-8 hours a night? Or don’t have any cravings? Hmmm, must not be that easy then. Shoot, I even struggle from time to time and eating right is my job! Think of your body as a machine. In order for it to work efficiently, it must be properly oiled and fueled with the appropriate constituents. We fuel our machines with macronutrients known as protein, carbohydrates and fat. The tricky part is to discover just how much your machine actually needs and when to oil it.

Protein

Each and every meal needs to contain ample protein. In fact, your cells depends on it. Protein makes up enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals. Protein is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, blood and hair and nails. For those of you who like a good workout, protein provides a constant flow of amino acids needed to build muscle and fuel recovery.

This marvelous macronutrient has a thermogenic effect, meaning protein takes more energy to burn off than other foods with same caloric value, including carbs. In fact, breaking down carbs burns about 5 to 15 percent of the calories you consume, while protein takes about 20 to 30 percent. Bet you’ll think twice next time you are choosing between a piece of turkey or a potato.

However, eating just any protein won’t cut it. High quality proteins like chicken, red meat, salmon, eggs and whey, soybeans and quinoa deliver the nine essential amino acids needed to kick start the muscle-building process. While our body can synthesize some amino acids, there are nine which we must get from food or supplements because we can’t produce them on our own. Additionally, animal proteins deliver more good stuff like energizing B-Vitamins, muscle-building creatine, leucine, carnosine and blood pumping iron. Vegetable proteins fall short on the essentials and are therefore considered incomplete. If you’re a vegetarian you can get around this with combining nuts, legumes and whole grains to create a complete protein, see below.

 

complete-proteins

 

Carbohydrates

You’ve heard it before and you’ll hear it again, low-carbohydrate diets promote fat loss. In a 12-month study from the University of Tulane in New Orleans, a low-carb diet promoted greater weight loss than a low-fat diet. The low-carb group consumed less than 40 grams of carbohydrates per day and the low-fat group consumed less than 30% of calories from fat. Caloric intake was not restricted. The low-carb, high-fat and protein group lost 12 pounds and a waist circumference of 2.6 inches. Where as the low-fat group lost 1/3 of the weight and .4 inches less than the low-carb group. In addition, the low-carb diet also showed greater decrease in total cholesterol, triglycerides, insulin, and overall cardiovascular risk.

Active people require carbs to fuel exercise, maintain muscle and liver glycogen stores (critical for exercise performance). Read more about carbohydrates and why your body needs them here. Though I am not suggesting you consume 40 grams of carbs per day (that is about 1 cup brown rice), you should fine tune your carb intake. For example, reserve your starchy carbohydrates for breakfast and around the time you exercise. Eat the majority of your carbohydrates post workout. This meal should consist of protein and carbohydrates and very little fat. The remaining carb-less meals should consist of protein, healthy fats, and veggies. Planning your meals this way enables you to get all the benefits from the three macronutrients and properly fuel your machine.

Fats

Eating fat will not make you fat. In fact, eating fat keeps you satiated longer so you actually consume less calories. In addition, they are required for optimal health. They are critical for cellular structure by regulating what goes in and out. Our brain and nerves depend on fat to send and receive messages. Fats also help regulate blood sugar and provide a constant supply of energy because our bodies store excess calories that we do not use immediately for later use. Fatty acids make up our steroid hormones and are needed for the assimilation of vitamins A, D, E, K. Pretty important if you ask me!

Good sources of fat include: salmon and other cold water-fatty fish, avocados, olive oil, olives, nuts, walnut oil, coconut oil, and seeds. Eat your fats in the afternoon and evening meals. Since fats are slowly digested, this will help speed the digestion of your protein and carbohydrates when you need them most. Our bodies need protein and carbs when breaking an overnight fast (breakfast) and refueling after training.

 How Much?

Well this is the tricky part. It depends on your goals, age, sex, activity level, metabolic profile, body composition, and the list goes on. Ranges for protein can be from 10% – 50% depending on the individual. I provided some examples below but for more information or an individualized plan contact me at: lorin@lovetolivenutrition.com.

Sample Ratios: 

  • Weight Loss-40-50% Protein, 10-20% Carbs, 30-40% Fats 
  • Maintenance- 25-35% Protein, 30-50% Carbs, 25-35% Fats 
  • Anabolic- 25-35% Protein, 40-60% Carbs, 15-20% Fats 
  • Cleansing- 2-10% Protein, 87-95% Carbs, 0-3% Fats 

 

See you back next week for strategy #2!! 🙂

 

 

 

References:

Crovetti R, et al. The influence of thermic effect of food on satiety. Eur J Clin Nutr. 1998. 52(7): 482 – 8.

Leidy HJ: Increased dietary protein as a dietary strategy to prevent and/or treat obesity. Mo Med 2014, 111:54-58.

Annals Internal Medicine. 161:309-318. 2014.

Boden G, Sargrad K, Homko C, Mozzoli M, Stein TP. Effect of a low-carbohydrate diet on appetite, blood glucose levels, and insulin resistance in obese patients with type 2 diabetes. Ann Intern Med 2005;142:403–11.

Rethink Your Reward System

Do-Not-Reward-Yourself-With-Food

 

Reframe your way of thinking. Yes, you may have just killed your workout. And yes, you may have eaten well for the past week but that doesn’t mean you have to reward yourself with a cookie. Instead, try an even harder workout routine. Eat even better than you did last week. Keep the momentum up and use it to crush your goals. I like to set a larger, longterm goal as well as short term weekly check-ins that remind me of what I am working towards. Once you reach each milestone, reward yourself with an experience or that new piece of clothing you have been eyeing.

Snooze to Lose

sleep-quotes-6

We all know how important it is to catch your zzz’s but did you know your sleep patterns can affect your weight loss goals? A study from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, shows how strongly related sleep and weight loss actually are. Researches discovered that disrupting sleep patterns by as little as 80 minutes causes people to consume an average of 549 more calories the next day.

We tend to over eat when we are sleep deprived because many hormones are affected by sleep. Two hormones in particular influence appetite: ghrelin and leptin. Several studies show that sleep patterns influence the production of both hormones. Ghrelin stimulates appetite and leptin sends a signal to the brain when you are full. When you fall behind on your sleep, ghrelin levels rise which cause you to feel hungrier than you actually are. On the contrary, leptin levels lower so you don’t feel as satisfied after you eat. The combination causes you to eat more and feel less satisfied which leads to weight gain. The best thing you can do is discover how many hours of sleep your body requires then stick to a normal sleep routine. Try going to bed when you feel tired and wake up sans alarm clock to figure out exactly how many hours your body needs. Your waistline will thank you!

 

Tips for Better Sleep

 

  1. Less light at night. Turn off TV, computers, phones, tablets and other electronic devices 60 minutes prior to bedtime. These devices emit blue light, which interferes with your circadian rhythm and melatonin secretion.
  2. Keep a regular sleep schedule. Get in touch with your body’s circadian rhythm by going to bed at the same time every night and waking up at the same time every morning. You will feel more refreshed and energized than if you sleep the same number of hours different at different times.
  3. The darker the better. Opt for a dark sleep environment to boost melatonin production at night. Cover electrical displays, use black out shades or wear an eye mask if necessary.
  4. Use your bedroom for sleep and sex. If you associate your bedroom with television, work or other stimuli, it will be harder to relax and fall asleep.

 

Another Reason Why You Should Avoid GMOs

Here is a great article, posted by www.RT.com, that provides yet another reason why you should avoid GMOs…

GMO Corn

“Genetically modified foods such as soy and corn may be responsible for a number of gluten-related maladies including intestinal disorders now plaguing 18 million Americans, according to a new report released on Tuesday.

The report was released by the Institute for Responsible Technology (IRT), and cites authoritative data from the US Department of Agriculture, US Environmental Protection Agency records, medical journal reviews as well as  international research.

“Gluten sensitivity can range in severity from mild discomfort, such as gas and bloating, to celiac disease, a serious autoimmune condition that can, if undiagnosed, result in a 4-fold increase in death,”said  Jeffrey M. Smith, executive director of IRT in a statement released on their website.

Smith cited how a “possible environmental trigger may be the introduction of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) to the American food supply, which occurred in the mid-1990s,” describing the nine GM crops currently on the market.

In soy, corn, cotton (oil), canola (oil), sugar from sugar beets, zucchini, yellow squash, Hawaiian papaya, and alfalfa,  “Bt-toxin, glyphosate, and other components of GMOs, are linked to five conditions that may either initiate or exacerbate gluten-related disorders,” according to Smith.

It’s the BT-toxin in genetically modified foods which kills insects by “puncturing holes in their cells.” The toxin is present in ‘every kernel’ of Bt-corn and survives human digestion, with a 2012 study confirming that it punctures holes in human cells as well.

The GMO-related damage was linked to five different areas: Intestinal permeability, imbalanced gut bacteria, immune activation and allergic response, impaired digestion, and damage to the intestinal wall.

The IRT release also indicated that glyphosate, a weed killer sold under the brand name ‘Roundup’ was also found to have a negative effect on intestinal bacteria. GMO crops contain high levels of the toxin at harvest.

“Even with minimal exposure, glyphosate can significantly reduce the population of beneficial gut bacteria and promote the overgrowth of harmful strains,” the report found.

Dr. Tom O’Bryan, internationally recognized expert on gluten sensitivity and Celiac Disease, says that “the introduction of GMOs is highly suspect as a candidate to explain the rapid rise in gluten-related disorders over the last 17 years.”

Internist, Emily Linder, offered some backup for the report’s findings. She removed GMO from her patients’ diets, finding that recovery from intestinal diseases was faster and more complete.

“I believe that GMOs in our diet contribute to the rise in gluten-sensitivity in the US population,” Linder said in the release.”- published November 26, 2013

 

photo credit: Khaled Desouki

The Power of Probiotics

ProbioticsYour health starts in your gut. In fact, when your gut is happy so is your brain, skin, immune system, cardiovascular system and digestive system. Little bacteria known as gut microbiota live in the small and large intestine and work hard to keep bad bacteria at bay.

Let’s start at the beginning

The colonization of gut microbiota starts at birth. A baby is sterile while in utero until it passes through the vaginal canal then good flora starts colonizing. It continues to develop through maternal milk and cultured foods. The gut microbiota continues to flourish throughout life and to what degree depends on environmental factors.

There are two types of flora: transient flora and resident flora. Transient strains live in the gut for a period for time then exit as part of the fecal matter. Where as resident strains literally take up residence within the walls of the GI tract: grow, reproduce and colonize the gut wall. Transients make substances that residents need while supporting the immune system response. We need both and balance needs to be considered. Which is why a high quality probiotic supplement should be a part of your daily routine.

Why do I want them?

As mentioned above, your health pretty much starts in your gut. Research repetitively shows probiotics support the digestive, cardiovascular, and immune systems. All species and strains produce substances which are detrimental to pathogenic bacteria. All bifidobacterium support detoxification, immune health, help with overgrowth of yeast. L. salivarius is useful in the small intestine and helps to maintain an already healthy inflammatory response. S.thermophilus, L acidophilus, DDS and L gulgaricus make lactase which helps to digest lactose (sugar found in dairy). L.reutri is found in breast milk and if absent may result in diarrhea. L.acidophilus DDS1 and all bifidobacterium produce B vitamins. While others help metabolize fats, proteins and carbs.

  1. In 2012 JAMA published a study that found combining probiotic strains supported healthy digestive function and regular bowel movements (1).
  2. Lactic acid bacteria is currently being considered an adjunctive method of supporting healthy nutrient levels such as folates, riboflavin and B 12. In other words, helps synthesize and assimilate B vitamins (2).
  3. Probiotics actually support the utilization of cholesterol: probiotic bacteria have been shown to break down cholesterol and use it for nourishment (3).
  4. L.rhamnosus and Streptococcus thermophilus has been found to possess the capability to support healthy balance of TH1/TH2 by supporting healthy IL-10 and cytokine levels (4). These gut flora and vitamin D do a fantastic job at regulating the immune response.

How do I keep them happy?

It is common for Americans to have dysbiosis or an imbalance of good and bad gut flora. This occurs mostly through the standard American diet or SAD. SAD is full of refined sugars, artificial sweeteners, refined carbohydrates and processed foods. It is virtually devoid of fermented soy (miso and tempeh), fermented vegetables (sauerkraut), fermented dairy (kefir, yogurt), fermented tea (kombucha). Fermented foods contain probiotics which help gut microbiota keep its balance, integrity and diversity. Prebiotics serve as “food” for these beneficial bacteria. Foods like raw dandelion greens, raw chicory root, raw garlic, raw leek, raw Jerusalem artichoke contain prebiotics.

chicory

There are about 100 trillion bacteria housed in the GI tract. Gut microbiota are more abundant than cells in the entire body! So do your best to keep these little guys happy.  A good quality probiotic supplement is a great place to start. I like the flora supplements by Innate Response. Please contact me for more information: lorin@lovetolivenutrition.com.

Fun Facts

  • Gut microbiota plays an important role in our lives and in the way our bodies function.
  • The composition of gut microbiota is unique to each individual, just like our fingerprints.
  • Our gut microbiota contains 100 trillion bacteria – ten times more cells than in our body.
  • There are more than 3 millions microbial genes in our gut microbiota –150 times more genes than in the human genome.
  • Microbiota, in total, can weigh up to 2 kg.
  • More than 1,000 different known bacterial species can be found in human gut microbiota, but only 150 to 170 predominate in any given subject. (5)

 

Probiotics

 

 

(1) JAMA, May 9, 2012- Vol 307, No 18.

(2) J Appl Microbiol. 2011 Dec; 111(6):1297-309.

(3) J Cardiovasc Dis Res. 2010 OPct- Dec; 1(4): 213-214.

(4) Clin Exp Immunol. 2011 jul;165(1):94-103

(5) http://www.gutmicrobiotawatch.org/gut-microbiota-info/

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