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Jan 31, 2012


Build Strength
Pushups are one of the oldest and most basic exercises and they are very effective. They work out all the muscles in the upper body and build optimal strength in the forearms, wrists, upper arms, shoulders and chest. Former NFL star Herschel Walker was one of the top running backs in the game in the 1980s. He eschewed weightlifting but he did a regimen of at least 100 pushups everyday, something he has continued well into his retirement. "They helped me get in shape and stay in shape," Walker said. "That's why I have always done them. Every day."

Increase Metabolism
Pushups push the body toward physical exertion. In addition to building strength, they force the heart to work harder and the blood to pump faster. This increases metabolism and helps you burn more calories. The benefit of the pushup is still felt hours after the exercise is done.

Doing pushups on a regular basis will make you stronger and improve your overall conditioning. However, it will also increase your confidence. You will find that doing pushups in sets of 25, 50 and 100 will build massive arm and upper body strength. Do it regularly and you will build as much strength as the guys who spend hours in the gym.It is such a good exercise that the U.S. Army still uses the pushup as one of its primary activities to get soldiers in shape.

Benefit to Women
Women typically have less upper body strength than men. While there has been an increase in womens' weightlifting, many women are not comfortable lifting barbells and heavy dumbbells. Pushups can be the great equalizer. Women who do pushups can quickly build strength in the chest, upper arms, forearms and wrists. Doing three sets of 10 to 15 pushups is a great starting point for women who want to get stronger.

Building Core Strength
In addition to building upper body strength and gaining more power in the arms, shoulders and hands, pushups done with the proper form will help build the core muscles in the middle of your body. To do pushups properly, your elbows must be fully extended at the start and end of a pushup, your toes should be on the floor and your legs, hips and back should be straight.

What to Eat Before You Work Out

Everyone knows that athletes must plan and time their meals and snacks very carefully to reach their performance goals. Do you have to be careful about what you eat before and after your workouts, too?

Your Pre-Exercise Fluid Needs
Being well-hydrated will make your exercise easier and more effective. Try to drink 16-20 ounces of water during the 1-2 hours before starting your workout.

Your Pre-Exercise Meal or Snack
News flash: Most of the fuel you use during exercise doesn’t come from the food you’ve recently eaten! It actually comes from the carbohydrates (called “glycogen”) and fat that’s stored in your muscles, liver, and fat cells. That’s enough to fuel 1-2 hours of very intense exercise or 3-4 hours of moderate intensity exercise.
This means that if your overall diet is adequate to keep your fuel tanks topped off, you may not need to eat anything before you work out. So, if eating before exercise upsets your stomach or you like to exercise first thing in the morning or at a time when eating first isn’t convenient, don’t feel like eating first is a must.Some people do have a hard time exercising without eating first, especially if it’s been a long time since their last meal or snack. These individuals often are more sensitive to changes in their blood sugar levels, which fall during the first 15-20 minutes of workout. That drop in blood sugar can cause tiredness, mild dizziness, or even faintness—especially if your blood sugar was already low, but eating something beforehand can help prevent this. If you have health issues like diabetes or hypoglycemia that can cause low blood sugar, you’ll probably want to eat before your workout. If you get very hungry during a workout try eating before you hit the gym to avoid problems.

Jan 30, 2012

How Salt Affects Your Weight ?

Salt does not cause you to gain or lose fat. In fact, salt has no calories. High consumption of salt only results in temporary weight gain as it causes your body to retain water. Conversely, low consumption of salt can result in temporary weight loss as it causes your body to expel water.It is interesting to note that many crash diets which boast quick weight loss rely on foods with little or no salt content. The weight loss is mostly water, and as you eat foods containing salt again you regain the weight.As for the Salt versus the Sodium ,We add table salt (sodium chloride) during cooking and at the dinner table to enhance the flavor of our food. Manufactures add it to return flavor to processed foods and help preserve them. But when we look at nutrition content, we look at sodium. Salt and sodium are not the same thing. Sodium, which is found naturally in most foods, accounts for approximately 40% of table salt.Thus when salt is added to food, the sodium content increases by approximately 40% of the amount of salt added.

Why Salt Causes Water Retention

Our bodies rely on electrolytes, most significantly sodium and potassium, to carry the electrical impulses that control our bodily functions. In order for our bodies to function properly, it is important that the concentration of electrolytes in our bodies remain constant.A high concentration of electrolytes in our blood triggers our thirst mechanism, causing us to consume adequate amounts of water to return to the proper concentration of electrolytes. This is one of the reasons bars provide free salty snacks like pretzels and peanuts. The salt causes us to become thirsty and purchase more drinks.When we consume an adequate amount of water, our kidneys are able to keep the concentration of electrolytes in our blood constant by increasing or decreasing the amount of water we retain. The result of our retaining more or less water in our bloodstream can also affect our blood pressure.The water moves beyond our bloodstream, too. Through the process of osmosis, water flows from a lower salinity environment to a higher one in an attempt to balance the levels of salinity. After we consume large amounts of salt, it is the water moving from our bloodstream into our skin that gives us that "puffy" look and makes it hard to get our rings off. Then, when we consume lesser amounts of salt, the same process works in reverse to remove the excess water from our bodies.

Jan 29, 2012

Best time to exercise

Morning Exercise
Some of us are "morning people" and some of us aren't.
Those of us who are swear by morning exercise. For the rest of us, the thought of getting up an hour earlier than we absolutely have to sends shivers of panic down our spines! Assuming those non-morning people among us can drag ourselves out of bed at an ungodly hour (especially in the middle of winter); there is another hurdle to be overcome - the thought of exercising on a totally empty stomach!
Putting this aside for a moment, there are some good reasons to exercise in the morning and also some very good reasons why it might not be a great idea.

Let's have a look at each of these under the headings of pros and cons.

Morning exercise pros
Exercising in the morning can:
Get our metabolisms off to a flying start helping us burn more calories throughout the day
Promote more fat burning because our depleted glycogen stores force our bodies to turn to fat
Produce endorphins that stimulates us and helps us get off to a positive start to the day
Act like a cup of coffee and wake us up
Help us exercise more consistently by minimizing distractions
Can create time for exercise by forcing us to get up a bit earlier
Improve energy levels for the rest of the day ahead
Improve our mental sharpness for hours after
Allow us to exercise unaffected by summer heat
Minimize our exposure to air pollution exercising outside
Make it easier to get on machines in the gym without waiting and when time limits don't apply

Morning exercise cons
As well as having many positives, morning exercise also has some negatives.
Included in these are the facts that morning exercise can:
Force us to workout with less than optimal energy levels
Promote injuries by forcing us to workout with cold, stiff muscles
If exercising before eating, muscle (as well as fat) can be used as a fuel source
Make it difficult for us to form a habit for exercise (if we are not "morning people")
Put some of us at higher risk for heart attack (research suggests a generalized increased risk)

Jan 28, 2012

High Protein diets: Are they safe?

For most healthy people, a high-protein diet generally isn't harmful if followed for a short time, such as three to four months, and may help with weight loss. However, the risks of using a high-protein diet — usually with carbohydrate restriction — for the long term are still being studied. Several health problems may result if a high-protein diet is followed for an extended time:

Some high-protein diets restrict carbohydrate intake so much that they can result in nutritional deficiencies or insufficient fiber, which can cause such health problems as constipation and diverticulitis, and may increase your risk for certain types of cancer.High-protein diets often promote foods such as red meat and full-fat dairy products. Some experts believe a diet rich in these foods can increase your risk of heart disease.A high-protein diet may cause or worsen liver or kidney problems because your body may already have trouble eliminating all the waste products of protein metabolism.If you want to follow a high-protein diet, do so only as a short-term weight-loss aid. Also, choose your protein wisely. Good choices include fish, skinless chicken, lean beef and low-fat dairy products. Choose carbs that are high in fiber, such as whole grains and nutrient-dense vegetables and fruit. And if you have kidney disease, liver disease or diabetes, if you're taking medication for a chronic health condition, or if you're pregnant or breastfeeding, talk to your doctor before starting a high-protein diet.

Jan 27, 2012

Benefits of Soy Milk

As the taste of commercial soy milk improves more and more people are drinking it as enjoyment. But many people drink soy milk for the added health benefits. So what are the benefits of drinking soy milk as compared to cow’s milk?

Benefit 1: Soy milk contains only vegetables proteins ,Vegetable proteins have the advantage that they cause less loss of calcium through the kidneys. It is known that a diet rich in animal (and dairy protein) creates a higher risk for osteoporosis.

Benefit 2: Soy milk contains no lactose .About 75 percent of the world population cannot tolerate lactose. As an additional benefit, soy milk contains the prebiotic sugars stachyose and raffinose. These prebiotic sugars boost immunity and help decrease toxic substances in the body.

Benefit 3: Fewer people are allergic to soy milk .Only 0.5 percent of the children are allergic to soy milk, whereas 2.5 percent is allergic to cow’s milk.

Benefit 4: Soy milk reduces cholesterol .The saturated fats in cow’s milk are unhealthy and increase your cholesterol. The protein in cow’s milk has no benefits for the cholesterol. Soy protein can decrease cholesterol levels. The FDA (Food and Drug Administration of US) confirms that soy protein, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol may significantly reduce the risk of coronary heart. The FDA recommends to incorporate 25 grams of soy protein in your daily meals.

Benefit 5: Soy milk contains no hormones Cow’s milk contains natural hormones (from the cow) but also synthetic hormones, which can influence the good working of our own body. The synthetic hormone rBGH (recombinant bovine growth hormone) increase milk production by as much as 20 percent.

Benefit 6: Soy milk does not cause insulin dependent diabetes .

Benefit 7: Soy milk is rich in isoflavones .The presence of isoflavones is the most important and unique benefit of soy milk. Each cup of soy milk contains about 20 mg isoflavones . Cow’s milk does not contain isoflavones. Isoflavones have many health benefits including reduction of cholesterol, easing of menopause symptoms, prevention of osteoporosis and reduction of risk for certain cancers (prostate cancer and breast cancer).

Jan 26, 2012

Why You Shouldn’t Weigh Yourself Every Day ?

It's common practice for many people who are in the process of losing weight to "weigh in" every day. This is probably not the best idea for two main reasons. Our weight will fluctuate due to water retention. Our bodies go through a process at night during sleep and one of those processes is losing water. During sleep our bodies will lose water through transpiration (sweating) and respiration (breathing.)
We also often retain water so you may find that you weigh 2 - 3 pounds more than you did yesterday and wonder what is going on. Very often this is due to water weight. Retaining water can happen by consuming too much salt and oddly enough, not drinking enough water. I have read before that staying hydrated will help reduce water retention.
Another reason you may notice a shift in weight is because if you are working out regularly, chances are you are also putting on more lean muscle. Therefore you are adding muscle which adds weight. You may think all of your effort is wasted because of the number on the scale, when it is just a combination of water weight and muscle gain.While weighing yourself is important, don't let the scale determine what you do in order to stay fit. Continue to eat right and workout. Pay more attention to how you feel physically and how your clothes fit rather than what the number on the scale says.

Jan 25, 2012

Powerful Ways to Overcome Depression

Depression is one of the leading causes of disability, missed work, broken relationships and more.It is truly one of the most devastating of diseases.Traditional routes of therapy and even medication are effective and should definitely be considered still however there are other, natural steps to be very effective and mostly don’t cost a thing!

1. Get outside.Exposure to bright sunlight for 30 minutes a day either helps keep your internal clock set and helps our physical and mental health. Don’t wear sunglasses though; the exposure must come through your eyes!

2. Aerobic Exercise.30 minutes at least 3 times a week It’s also a good way to work through and release stress. Walking works wonders. Get your doctor’s approval first!

3.Avoid overly processed foods in favor of complex carbohydrates

4. Sleep. Change your sleep routine . Turn your lights down and go to bed at the same time everynight. Turn the t.v. off. reading, taking a warm bath, etc. Avoid caffeine and alcohol. Don’t work late, Remember a tired body and quiet mind are the requirements for quality sleep.

5. Socialize.Involve yourself with close friends and family. just have fun. Keep it simple and go to a movie, visit an art gallery or museum, go to a ball game, grab a cup of coffee or have a meal together. Do this face to face (not online!) and do it regularly.

6. Watch your thinking! It takes work and persistence but if you constantly tell yourself to ‘stop it’ when you start to go over and over the negatives, then you are building a positive habit that will change your life for the better.

Jan 24, 2012

Let's Peanut Butter !!

There are many misconceptions about eating peanut butter, the most prevalent one is being high in calories to possibly be healthy.Eaten in moderation, PB can be part of a balanced diet. It provides many health benefits, most notably the ability to lower LDL--the "bad" cholesterol--as well as lowering triglycerides.Most people believe that eating peanut butter will cause weight gain. But one of the main benefits is its ability as a food to provide a feeling of fullness.One of the many benefits of eating peanut butter is that it contains large amounts of dietary fiber, equal to about 8 percent. Fiber helps in the process of controlling blood sugar & cholesterol levels. Another benefit of fiber is that it can reduce the chance of developing colorectal cancer.It contains high amounts of proteins .It contains vitamins E and B3 and the minerals copper,iron calcium & potassium.

Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate has recently been discovered to have a number of healthy benefits.

Dark Chocolate is Good for Your Heart
Studies show that eating a small amount of dark chocolate two or three times each week can help lower your blood pressure.

Dark Chocolate is Good for Your Brain

Dark chocolate increases blood flow to the brain as well as to the heart, so it can help improve cognitive function.It helps reduce your risk of stroke. Chocolate contains phenylethylamine (PEA), the same chemical your brain creates when you feel like you're falling in love. PEA encourages your brain to release endorphins, so eating dark chocolate will make you feel happier.

Dark Chocolate Helps Control Blood Sugar

Dark chocolate helps keep your blood vessels healthy and your circulation unimpaired to protect against type 2 diabetes.

Dark Chocolate is Full of Antioxidants

Dark chocolate is loaded with antioxidants. Antioxidants help free your body of free radicals, which cause oxidative damage to cells. Free radicals are implicated in the aging process and may be a cause of cancer, so eating antioxidant rich foods like dark chocolate can protect you from many types of cancer and slow the signs of aging.

Dark Chocolate Contains Theobromine

Dark chocolate contains theobromine, which has been shown to harden tooth enamel. That means that dark chocolate, unlike most other sweets, lowers your risk of getting cavities if you practice proper dental hygiene.

Dark Chocolate is High in Vitamins and Minerals

Dark chocolate contains a number of vitamins and minerals that can support your health. Dark chocolate contains some of the following vitamins and minerals in high concentrations:Potassium,Copper,Magnesium,Iron

Jan 23, 2012

What's the Best Weight Loss Exercise?

It's walking or running. These are not only the oldest form of exercise, but among the most healthful. Here are just a few of their benefits:
Running burns more calories in less time than almost any other continuous exercise.
A regular running or walking program lowers your risk of life-threatening maladies such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
Walking is a low-impact exercise that produces less stress on the knees and joints than many other activities do.
Both walking and running produce endorphins, brain chemicals that make you feel happy and confident.
Both are social activities—you can run or walk with a friend, your kids, or even strangers in a race.

How to Break your Routine ?

Hold a conversation with a new person everyday. Expand your world beyond people similar to you. Talk to people from other countries,or just try talking to the maintenance and cleaning people, the mail room staff. You’ll learn about ways of life and outlooks on life that are incredibly different from your own.
Avoid wasting time.Don’t watch television.Relaxation frees the subconscious to connect the blocks of your knowledge and experiences. When you free your mind your subconscious has more power to bring in random thoughts or connect items that are not necessarily related to each other. Use your lunch, not just for lunch with friends .Go to museums, new restaurants, new parks, try new foods ,working at their desks or going to the same restaurant with the same people and eating the same food.Read books from the Dummies series on subjects you have no use for. Even better, read children’s books; they’re faster. There are millions of subjects you could expose yourself to with a few minutes each day. Create a piece of art and enter it into an art exhibit. Carry a camera with you and capture some interesting scenes.Try writing a short story. You don’t have to be Hemingway. Trouble coming up with an idea? Write the story about a character doing what you do, at work, home, having fun, whatever. Two thousand words are all you need.Expose yourself to a wide variety of music . Thanks to the internet you can now listen to anything you can imagine and more , and if you normally listen to American Pop then it’s time to try some jazz and classical.Change your schedule: If you normally arrive at work at 8 a.m. try 9 a.m. and 7 a.m. You’ll see your world differently, you’ll sense different emotions in the people you meet and hear different sounds. Try getting up with the sun and going outside to listen to the birds and feel the early morning breeze. It’s wonderful.

Jan 22, 2012

Benefits of Drinking Water

Drinking a healthy amount of water is vital to your health. You can never imagine just by drinking a healthy amount of water, you gain tremendous health benefits, and sometimes you can even throw away your migraine medicine or pain killer.
The human body is anywhere from 55% to 78% water depending on body size. A rule of thumb, 2/3 of body is consists of water, and it is the main component of human body. Did you know that your tissues and organs are mainly made up of water? Here is the %:

Muscle consists of 75% water
Brain consists of 90% of water
Bone consists of 22% of water
Blood consists of 83% water

The functions of water in human body are vital. The water:

Transports nutrients and oxygen into cells
Moisturizes the air in lungs
Helps with metabolism
Protects our vital organ
Helps our organs to absorb nutrients better
Regulates body temperature
Protects and moisturizes our joints

Every cell in your body needs water from head to toe. That is why it is so important to drink enough fluid. Take for example, brain consists of 90% of water, if you do not supply enough water to your body, your brain cannot function well, and you will get headache or migraine. Hence, next time, if you feel fatigue and headache, it may be the sign of dehydration.

Is Sushi a good food to eat on a diet ?

People have this perception that sushi is a really healthy food, which it is, but people also for some reason have this idea that sushi is just rolls. So, they think sushi rolls are healthy. It really depends on the roll.One typical Americanized sushi roll (something like a Dragon roll) can be up to 800 calories... maybe even more.As mentioned earlier, fish is extremely high in Omega 3s, but not all sushi contains fish. Sushi, by definition, is vinegar rice, usually topped with another ingredient, the most common ingredient being raw fish, but that doesn't mean raw fish IS sushi. Raw fish alone is called sashimi. Also, fish doesn't just contain omega 3 fats; it also has saturated fats, but the amount of saturated fat is quite a bit less.California rolls are terrible, and they are definitely not the best for you; many of them have mayo...Try some nigiri,Also, if you're going to eat sushi with fish, you shouldn't eat a lot. Depending on the species, fish can have a lot of mercury. people are overly paranoid of it, but it is a concern of modern day society. Salmon is an example of a fish with low mercury content while fish like tuna, yellowtail, and swordfish are examples of fish with high in mercury content.
However, to ensure you are getting the cleanest fish possible, I recommend going to sushi restaurants ONLY if the sushi chefs were born in and trained to make sushi in Japan. They know the best way to handle the fish.

Jan 20, 2012

Top 10 Causes of Headaches

1. Stress. Stress is easily one of the most common causes of headaches. The best way to reduce headaches caused by stress is to work out or meditate to relax your nerves and keep your stress levels at a minimum.

2. Eating. Your eating habits can have a huge impact on your health. Choosing to eat unhealthy foods like chips, chocolate and processed meats and cheeses will increase the likeliness that you’ll suffer from headaches. Eating fresh vegetables and fruits and drinking lots of water will help to prevent headaches.

3. Eye Strain. Eye strain is often associated with headaches. Squinting your eyes for an extended period of time (or exposing your eyes to fluorescent lighting) can impact the nerves in your head and trigger headaches. If you’re working on a computer, try using an anti-glare screen.

4. Lack of Sleep. Getting less than 7 hours of sleep a night can trigger a headache. Your body needs at least 7 hours of sleep to function.

5. Too Much Sleep. Getting less than 7 hours of sleep a night can spark headaches but getting more than 11 hours of sleep can have the same effect.

6. Sitting. It might be hard to believe but sitting in one place for too long can cause headaches. Make sure you stand for at least 10 minutes every hour to loosen up your muscles and keep them from tensing up.

7. Smoke. Smoke is a leading cause of headaches. While this is common knowledge for most people, what some don’t realize is that individuals who don’t smoke can still be severely affected by it and can ultimately suffer from headaches because of second-hand smoke.

8. Loud Noise. Any type of loud noise can trigger a headache. Likewise, being around loud noise will make it extremely difficult to get rid of a headache.

9. Hangover. Many would agree that a headache caused by a hangover is self-induced. The only way to get rid of a hangover headache is aspirin, water and time.

10. Medication Side Effects. Headaches are a common side effect of most medications. If you need the medication, there’s really no way of getting around the side effects.

Jan 19, 2012

Look Good…Feel Better

1.Good skin care is easy. Soap or lotion and moisturising are the two main ways you can improve the look of your skin. Pick a moisturiser with sun protection because sun damage is the main factor that ages skin.

2.Body odor. A bit of body smell can be a turn on,wash and shower as often as necessary. Anti perspirants and deodorants help regulate odor and sweat.

3.Get a good hair cut. Spend out; often the more expensive salons tend to keep up to date with fashion trends and products and can offer hair care that makes the most of what you have. Use a shampoo that is appropriate for your hair type and makes your hair look good.

4.A balanced diet containing fresh vegetables and fruit is good. It keeps you healthy and improves skin and hair. Try limiting your fast food intake.

5.Get enough exercise.Use everyday opportunities to avoid a sedentary life. Walk rather than take the elevator.Joining a gym or sports club will encourage you to exercise.

6.Clothing. Keep it clean, smart and trendy!
Oral hygeine: Keep teeth clean, visit the dentist, use a mouth wash.
Nails: keep them trimmed, clean and don't bite them.
Socks and underwear- change at least daily.

The Good Fats

Monounsaturated fats (MUFAs) lower total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol) while increasing HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol). Nuts including peanuts, walnuts, almonds and pistachios, avocado, canola and olive oil are high in MUFAs. MUFAs have also been found to help in weight loss, particularly body fat.

Polyunsaturated fats also lower total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol. Seafood like salmon and fish oil, as well as corn, soy, safflower and sunflower oils are high in polyunsaturated fats. Omega 3 fatty acids belong to this group.

Jan 17, 2012

Which Type Of Whey Protein Supplement Is The Best For Building Muscle?

You may have heard that whey protein is the best form of protein available to us. Well, you’ve heard right. Whey protein is a super source of protein for athletes, bodybuilders, those looking to lose weight, and people with a whole array of medical conditions.

Today I’m going to list some of the whey protein facts. Facts that make whey protein the best source of protein. The fact is that whey protein is a superfood and almost anyone can benefit from consuming it. Here’s the facts about whey protein … Read the full post by clicking the link above .

Jan 16, 2012

Benefits Of Sleep

The benefits of sleep impact nearly every area of daily life. While it may be obvious that sleep is beneficial, most people don't realize how much sleep they need and why it is so important.
According to the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School, your body manages and requires sleep in much the same way that it regulates the need for eating, drinking, and breathing.These studies have consistently shown that sleep plays a vital role in promoting physical health and emotional well-being.
This explains why, after a good night's sleep, you feel better, your thoughts are clearer, and your emotions are less fragile. Achieving restful sleep begins with keeping a consistent sleep schedule and creating a bedroom environment that promotes relaxation. Also, mattresses play a key role in the quality of your sleep.Your bed should always feel comfortable, supportive, and fresh.
Over time, chronic sleep deprivation may lead to an array of serious medical conditions including obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and even early mortality.

The Miracle of Green Tea "Better to be deprived of food for three days, than tea for one." (Ancient Chinese Proverb)

Is any other food or drink reported to have as many health benefits as green tea? The Chinese have known about the medicinal benefits of green tea since ancient times, using it to treat everything from headaches to depression. In her book Green Tea: The Natural Secret for a Healthier Life, Nadine Taylor states that green tea has been used as a medicine in China for at least 4,000 years. University of Purdue researchers recently concluded that a compound in green tea inhibits the growth of cancer cells. There is also research indicating that drinking green tea lowers total cholesterol levels.