Posts Tagged ‘Nutrition’

You may have heard of fiber and might even have heard that’s its good for you but I’m willing to bet that you weren’t told why it’s so good for you.

Fiber is a way for you to give your diet and body a healthy boost and you might not be aware of that fact.

Here are some fiber facts to help you fuel your health:

1.) Fiber helps fight disease – A high fiber diet helps your body flush out waste, toxins and excess cholesterol which helps reduce the risk of heart disease, colon cancer and other ailments.

2.) Fiber helps prevent overeating – High fiber foods usually require you to take more time chewing them before you swallow. This time is very important because it takes the brain about 20 minutes to catch on that you are full. Foods that are high in fiber are usually more filling too because of the bulk they add to your diet. This bulk fills your stomach and helps you feel satisfied for a longer period of time.

3.) Many of the good tasting fast foods and other popular food items are low in fiber, high in calories and full of preservatives or artificial flavoring.

4.) Dietary fiber is best – Whole grains and other concentrated grain products are naturally high in this vital part of your diet.

5.) Everyone older than 2 needs fiber in their diet – Fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains and even fortified cereals should be part of your diet regardless of your age.

6.) A high fiber diet increases your need for water – Since fiber is meant to move through your system, you will need plenty of water so it doesn’t get bogged down and clog up the intestines its helping flush.

7.) Fiber is lost through cleaning, cooking or peeling – Many foods have nutrients lost when they are cleaned, peeled or cooked but fiber is throughout the food so it will remain regardless of the preparation process.

8.) Too much fiber is bad – If your diet contains too much fiber on any given day, you may experience bloating or diarrhea and it may hinder the absorption of minerals your body needs.

9.) Getting enough fiber doesn’t have to be an unpleasant chore – You can switch out some of the high calorie low fiber foods for more whole grain cereals, breads, fresh fruits, vegetables and a variety of tasty dishes made with fiber rich foods. Fresh fruits are especially good because they add fluids you need as well as fiber, minerals and vitamins.

Starting or maintaining a fiber rich diet is a great way to help control your weight, prevent cancer, reduce your cholesterol, reduce the risk of heart disease and increase the chance that you’ll feel better while enjoying better health.

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Your overall health is affected by both your eating habits and lifestyle. If you listen to the myths mentioned below, you may not be as healthy as you could be.

Myth 1 – Don’t Eat Before Working Out

Attempting to exercise when you haven’t eaten anything or properly hydrated is about the same as trying to run your car on low water and gas neither will function properly. You’ve probably experienced the overheating of car when it’s low on water and maybe even the sputtering and stalling of an engine without gas.

Your stomach often rumbles when it needs fuel. If you don’t feed it before working out, you risk a less than productive exercise session. A failure to properly hydrate before working out could lead to muscle cramps or worse.

Water and some fruit or another natural snack will do your body good.

Myth 2 – Energy Bars and Energy Drinks Replace Meals

These items are fine once in awhile but they don’t deliver all the vitamins, minerals, fiber, fluids and other nutrients you need for optimal health.

Myth 3 – Skipping Breakfast

Breakfast gives your body its wakeup call. Your metabolism wakes up which produces your energy and helps regulate your weight. Fail to eat this meal and you will probably notice a lack of energy most of the day, a tiredness that remains even after eating and the possibility of a hunger that can’t be satisfied.

Myth 4 – Low Carb Diets Are Good

Your body needs carbohydrates for your muscles and the storing of energy. Any diet that limits or completely excludes a group of nutrients that your body needs is going to harm your long term health.

Myth 5 – Eating Everything You Want

Your body needs certain nutrients to operate at its best even if you don’t exercise like you should. When you eat an unbalanced diet, even IF you exercise, you are failing to provide your body what it needs to maintain good health and naturally fight off illness and disease.

Myth 6 – Calorie Deprivation Is Good

Weight loss requires the reduction in the number of calories you consume each day but a reduction of more than 20% puts your body into starvation mode. In this mode, the food you eat is stored as fat rather than burned for energy AND your energy is derived by burning muscle. A gradual reduction in your food intake plus an increase in exercise is necessary for weight loss but rapid weight loss might mean you aren’t eating enough.

Myth 7 – Drinking Soda and Alcohol is Okay

Water and natural juices are the best beverages for you to drink. Sodas either offer calories with no nutritional value or artificial ingredients. There is conflicting data on the benefits of alcohol but it is widely accepted that alcohol can cause problems in many situations. Drink plenty of water at regular intervals and don’t wait until you are thirsty to drink. There are many situations where your body is already dehydrated by the time you are thirsty.

Making a conscious effort to eat healthy is always the first step towards feeling better and living a healthier life. A healthy diet and exercise regimen can do a lot in fighting the stress time and your lifestyle can place on your body.

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Everyone agrees that arthritis pain relief is your primary goal when you are hurting but there are a numerous opinions on how to get the relief you desire.

Here are three ways you may ease your pain without resorting to drugs.

Massage

Many of us have experienced relief from minor aches and muscle tightness by having a good massage. There is a segment within the healing community that also believes pain, including arthritis, causes inflammation and flare ups in pressure points near the cause of the pain. Massage the area around the pain and include these pressure points and it is believed that you’ll experience at least temporary arthritis pain relief.

Pick almost any arthritic joint and you can easily figure out the muscle groups just above or below it to massage or have massaged to gain the relief you seek.

Exercise

If you allow arthritis pain to alter your lifestyle dramatically and you limit your activity, you WILL lose functionality as time passes. Use it or lose it.

Exercise is a natural pain medicine that provides arthritis pain relief. The reason for this is the endorphins your body creates while you exercise. Endorphins are your body’s natural pain killers.

You can get your body to release enough endorphins to make a difference in how you feel by taking a nice walk for about 30 minutes.

Nutrition

Too many of us have poor nutritional habits. The commercial foods we buy at the grocery store are often providing fewer nutrients than our body needs to maintain our health.

Because of our nutrient deficiencies, it is often recommended that quality supplements be added to your regimen to ensure you are getting the most healing power possible out of your body.

Not all medical practitioners agree that dietary supplements help but many dieticians and doctors will agree that many people aren’t getting the proper nutrition from the foods they eat.

It’s important to note that dietary supplements are NOT regulated for quality so it’s up to you to do your research and make your purchases from reputable companies.

The three approaches to arthritis pain relief I’ve just mentioned should all be used and become part of your daily life for maximum relief.

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Potatoes can be one of your biggest allies in your weight loss program if you learn about them and everything they have to offer you.

This amazing vegetable is one of the most popular in America. Its popularity even surpasses lettuce and onions. Many people never get tired of eating this food because it can be fixed in so many different ways. About one third of the meals eaten by Americans include this veggie in some form.

One great thing about the spud is that it adds the bulk to your meal that lets you know you’ve eaten something and when stored and prepared properly the potato packs a very nutritional punch.

Spuds are high in fiber, carbohydrates, contain more potassium than a banana and one medium sized potato contains about 45% of the recommended daily amount of Vitamin C that’s recommended for good health.

A potato is naturally low in calories and contains no fat, sodium, or cholesterol. Potato skin provides a helpful dose of fiber, iron, potassium, calcium, zinc, phosphorus, and several B vitamins.

This vegetable is best and it retains more of its natural nutrition when stored in a cool, dark place such as a basement or cellar. Too much light in your storage area may result in green potatoes. Refrigeration or freezing should be avoided when possible because the starch is turned to sugar by the cold and that causes them to turn dark when cooked.

You can prepare potatoes by boiling them, steaming them, or even roasting them. If at all possible, you should avoid putting your spuds in the refrigerator or freezing them, as cold will turn the potato starch to sugar and cause them to turn dark when they are cooked.

Mashed, baked, fried, boiled and broiled are a few of the ways this amazing vegetable can be prepared. The calories you get from eating potatoes come more from the toppings you add than the veggie itself.

Piling on the sour cream, chives, bacon bits, chili, cheese or butter adds up a LOT of calories you don’t want or need BUT taking a cut up spud and baking it with French dressing creates a very tasty side dish that’s easy on calories and very filling.

In my opinion, every weight loss program should include potatoes as a part of the menu.

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Eating healthy doesn’t have to be budget busting as these healthy eating tips show. Everyone is feeling the pinch from the consistently climbing food prices.

  1. Eliminate Junk food – Create a list and stick to it. Do NOT go grocery shopping with your kids or spouse or you WILL stray to please them. Junk foods provide marginal nutrition for you and the price per unit is often budget busting.
  2. Drink Water or Juice instead of soft drinks – You can still enjoy milk and your favorite soft drinks on special occasions BUT limit your intake because milk is a very expensive source of vitamins C and D AND soft drinks offer no useful nutrition.We all need Calcium and the Natural Calcium Sources page shows that milk isn’t always the best source of calcium for us.
  3. Fruits and Vegetables – If possible, grow your own and then either can or freeze what you don’t eat. Growing your own food may not be an option but there are often local growers that let you pick your own for a substantial savings. If this isn’t an option either, buying from local growers or buying in bulk are the next level of savings.
  4. Tuna Fish – Tuna is a relatively inexpensive source of protein AND it has the omega fatty acids that help feed the brain. The calories in tuna dishes don’t climb until you start adding mayonnaise and all of the other ingredients that are commonly used to make dishes with tuna.
  5. Fresh Fish – In season and where you can, fresh fish that you catch is a great supplement to your nutritious diet. Extra fish can be frozen for another day.
  6. Beans – Beans are another great protein source and they are very versatile. You can add beans to other ingredients to make very tasty and healthy meals that are inexpensive, healthy and good. Note: The USDA recommends eating beans at least 4 times per week. If you experience gas after eating beans you should try washing them, covering them with water, bringing the water to a boil, then draining it off and refilling the pot.
  7. Whole Grain Rice – White rice has been processed and bleached so most of the nutritional value is lost but whole grain rice still has the nutrients and fiber you need.
  8. Peanut Butter – This isn’t as inexpensive as it used to be but it is still nutritious and popular among many of us. A large jar of peanut butter that is refrigerated may last for weeks.
  9. Potatoes – This low calorie carbohydrate is good for you and it will help fill you up. Potatoes are often thought of as fattening but they aren’t. They become so when liberal amounts of butter, sour cream, bacon bits and other toppings are piled on the potato.
  10. Sweet Potatoes – This is a favorite for the holidays that is usually neglected the rest of the year. Like the white potato, the sweet potato is healthy and it tastes good.

Healthy eating is a lifestyle choice and someone on a budget will still find a way to live their chosen lifestyle without feeling deprived. I hope these healthy eating tips have gotten your creative juices flowing.

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