How to Achieve a Healthy Diet


How to Achieve a Healthy Diet

How to Achieve a Healthy Diet
By Josee Smith

Here’s an important factor that has a huge impact on your overall fitness level and general wellness: your diet.

What is a “diet?”

The word “diet” means “a collection of food items that a person regularly eats.”

Every person has a current diet. If you know someone who eats cheesy potatoes and cheeseburgers six days a week, that’s still considered a diet (admittedly, a very unhealthy one).

If you want to slim down and tone up, start by examining the composition of your present diet to determine how many calories you are consuming per day. Analyzing your current diet can also reveal if you are getting enough essential nutrients, water and dietary fiber.

What is a quality diet?

A quality diet provides a balanced mix of macronutrients and micronutrients in the right amounts. Here is a quick recap of the essential nutrients that our bodies need to function normally:

Macronutrients

Protein – Protein repairs and builds muscle tissues. People who regularly perform cardio and weight training need sufficient protein to build lean muscle mass.

Both male and female bodybuilders consume large quantities of protein-rich food to ensure that fat stores are kept to a minimum and that muscle size and strength are maintained.

Carbohydrates – Carbohydrates are the main fuel of the body. Our bodies transform carbohydrates into glucose, a usable form of sugar. The body can also store glucose in the muscles.

When glucose is stored in the muscles, it’s transformed into a substance called glycogen.

It may be more difficult to lose weight if you completely remove carbohydrates from your diet because the body needs carbs as its primary energy source.

Fat – Fat performs numerous important functions in the body, including vitamin absorption, transport and storage.

It also creates a padding around the muscles that acts as a shock absorber. Fat also improves a person’s thermoregulation and prevents too much heat from escaping the body especially during cold weather.

Excess calories from food are stored in our fat tissues. When we lose weight, we don’t actually “burn off” fat cells. Our fat cells simply shrink as the excess fat is burned off through exercise and other physical activities.

Water – Keeping your body hydrated is easy! All you will ever need is pure water. My personal rule for hydration is equally easy to remember. If you’re thirsty, reach for water 99% of the time.

If you drink soda, start reducing your daily consumption and replace it with water. You’ll soon feel more energized because your body is not under the constant influence of diuretics found in soda.

Dietary Fiber – Dietary fiber plays a crucial role in maintaining cardiovascular and digestive health.

Fiber has the ability to block some of the lipids or “bad cholesterol” from being absorbed by the body.

Insoluble fiber on the other hand (fiber that cannot be digested by the body) acts as a cleaning machine inside the colon and helps you clear your colon effortlessly.

Micronutrients

Vitamins – Vitamins are used by the body to maintain normal growth and development. Vitamins also enhance major and minor functions within the body such as eyesight and skin growth.

Minerals – Minerals are inorganic substances derived from the food we eat. The body cannot naturally create minerals.

You have to make sure that you are getting enough minerals from your diet. Essential minerals include calcium, iron, potassium and zinc. Minerals naturally occur in meats, vegetables and fruits.

How do you know if you are getting enough nutrients?

Losing weight does not mean you have to sacrifice your nutrition. Weight loss actually comes naturally when you modify your diet and add more of the best food on the planet like beans, legumes, green leafy vegetables, cruciferous vegetables, etc.

Superfoods like spinach and broccoli provide only a modest amount of calories in every serving so it would be challenging to “overeat” when your diet is comprised of at least 85% healthy, whole food. Usually, it’s the nutrient-deficient food items like candy bars and hamburgers that are responsible for caloric overload in a person’s diet.

Be mindful of what you eat (even when you’re just snacking) and you just might discover the food items that are making you gain weight!

For more tips and strategies on how to lose weight permanently and be healthy and happy, get your free copy of The Quick-Start Weight Loss Hanbook at http://www.joseesmith.com/quickstartweightloss

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Josee_Smith/1677631

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8 Tips on How To Meditate At Home


8 Tips on How To Meditate At Home

8 Tips on How To Meditate At Home
By Satvik Mittal

If you prepare well before meditation, you can get the most out of your meditation. In case you don’t know, you can meditate at home. If you have no idea as to how to go about doing it, here are some tips for you. Read on.

Choose The Right Time

Basically, meditation is the time that you want to spend in order to focus and relax yourself. So, you should choose a time of the day when no one will disturb you and you can enjoy your time. Ideally, we suggest that you choose sunrise or sunset for this purpose. During these hours, the noise level is very low and everything is fresh.

Choose The Right Place

Once you have chosen the right time, your next step is to choose a location where no one will disturb you. As a matter of fact, peaceful places make the meditation a lot more relaxing and enjoyable experience. If you have a yard in your house, you may go over there to spend a few minutes and do your meditation.

Choose the Right Posture

Once you have chosen a quiet place, your next move is to decide on the right posture. Make sure the posture you have selected is relaxing, steady and comfortable. Sit down with your legs folded at your knees. It’s just like people sit in a yoga position. Sit straight and make sure your spine is also straight. Now, keep your neck and shoulders relaxed. For extra comfort, you can close your eyes the whole time.

Meditate Before a Meal

We suggest that you meditate on an empty stomach. After a meal, meditating will be harder as you may doze off. However, it’s not a good idea to meditate when you are starving. The hunger cramps may not let you focus and your mind will keep wandering or thinking about meal throughout the meditation. It’s a good idea to do this two hours after you have eaten your meal.

Warm up

It’s a good idea to warm-up before you sit down to meditate. It will improve your blood circulation and will make your body feel more active. Aside from this, warm-ups will help you to sit steady more easily.

Take Deep Breaths

Again, this is part of the preparation process. Moreover, deep breathing prior to meditation is recommended by experts. By taking deep breaths, you can steady your breath rhythm and your mind will become peaceful.

Smile

This will make a huge difference. A gentle smile will keep your relaxed and peaceful. Moreover, it will improve your meditation experience to a great extent.

After mediation

After meditation, don’t open your eyes all of a sudden. It’s not the right way. What you should do is open your eyes gradually and then slowly become aware of your surroundings.

So, if you are just getting started with meditation, we suggest that you check out these beginner guidelines. Hopefully, you will be able to get the most out of your time and you will achieve the inner peace. Just make sure you follow these guidelines, as they are the basics of this journey. Hope this helps.

Have you been looking for tips on how to mediate at home? If so, we suggest that you take a look at multimeditation. They offer great information about the subject.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Satvik_Mittal/1728302

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The Concept of Alkaline Water – Basics, Uses, Benefits and Side Effects


The Concept of Alkaline Water – Basics, Uses, Benefits and Side Effects

The Concept of Alkaline Water – Basics, Uses, Benefits and Side Effects
By Hampry Gomes

The contemporary customer has endless choices in everything. If you walk into a convenience store and look for packaged water, you will find all sorts of options, right from natural spring water to flavored water and much more. One of the top sellers on that list would be alkaline water, which has found immense popularity in a short time. So, what’s the hype all about? Should you replace regular water with packaged ionized water? In this post, we will uncover the fundamental aspects, along with benefits, side effects and other things.

Knowing the Concept:

In your school years, you must have read about acid-base chemistry. The whole concept of alkaline water is based on that theory. Advocates of ionized water, as it is often known, claim that the high pH of water helps in getting rid of acids in the bloodstream and can prevent a lot of common diseases. Natural spring water is known to be alkaline and is often sold at high prices because of the same reason. Spring and stream water passes over rocks and gathers minerals, which changes the pH level. Of course, most of us don’t live in the jungles, so we have to rely on packaged water, which comes with added things like calcium, magnesium, and bicarbonate.

The Benefits:

Most brands add natural additives like calcium, magnesium, potassium to water to make it basic/alkaline. The presence of antioxidants in alkaline water helps in easy detox and neutralizes the acids in the body to offer a refreshing experience. The pH level of water depends from brand to brand, but experts suggest on choosing options that score at least 9 on the pH scale. If you are following the alkaline diet, this particular concept should be a part of your daily routine. Alkaline water is also believed to increase the hydration rate and metabolism, which is ideal for people dealing with obesity in particular. Some people have claimed that ionized water has helped in regulating the blood sugar levels, although the amount of information is pretty limited. Not to forget, packaged 9.5pH alkaline water has a better taste than regular tap water.

The Side Effects:

Well, the only downside is the relatively limited research on the subject. There are no known side effects of replacing regular drinking water with basic alkaline water, but the benefits are often subject to controversies. While millions of people claim good things about the diet and drinking high pH water, science is yet to prove a lot of these facts. However, if you are looking beyond filtered water and aerated drinks, this is surely a better choice. Just keep a check on the brand you choose to get the best benefits.

The alkaline diet has found many takers, but the food chart is often hard to follow. With ionized water, you can take a start without trying too hard. Also, keep in mind that our body has its ways to maintain the overall pH level, so the replacement is a matter a choice and not compulsion.

I am a marketing representative of Tru Balance Water. Tru Balance Water Inc seeks to introduce the highest quality alkaline health water to the masses at a competitive price while maintaining an Eco Friendly stance.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Hampry_Gomes/1947642

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Adopt These Simple Steps to Get Fit


Adopt These Simple Steps to Get Fit

Adopt These Simple Steps to Get Fit
By Raman Kuppuswamy

It may be a tough bet to make a guess about the next big theory in the fitness field. In this context, if your aim is to get fit and if you keep on asking for advice from every person you meet, you will get as many or even double the number of suggestions as the number of people you seek advice from. This complicates the whole process and ultimately, you will be a confused person who is not able to take even the first step towards achieving your goal. But there are a few simple steps that can help you in achieving your aim of getting fit. Let us have a look.

1. Think of your goal as often as possible. Frame a few affirmations that you can repeat to yourself so you get enthused to take the required steps. For example, “I will be shedding 10 pounds within six months so my appearance gets enhanced” is the right affirmation that can strengthen your desire. The point is that your affirmation should be realistic and achievable.

2. Think many times before inviting your close friends for a drink or before you are about to “indulge.” The point that is emphasized is that you may not really like to have a drink or may not really feeling hungry. These may be ploys to escape from the situations you find yourself in.

3. Meditation can do a world of good for your health. Even if you are a very fit person, it is of no use if you do not have a calm mind. Meditation will help in calming your mind. You can choose any type of meditation but you should practice it with consistency.

4. Sleep can play a very vital role in your efforts to get fit. It is during sleep that your body repairs itself by secreting all the necessary hormones. Therefore, ensure to have at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep daily.

5. Drink a good amount of water daily. Experts advise that by drinking at least 8 glasses of water, you can cleanse your system. Health issues like constipation and stomach disorder will not affect you if you make it a point to drink sufficient quantity of water on a daily basis.

6. Do not force yourself to do your exercises. You should enjoy your workout regimen. If you feel bored or fatigued in the midst of your workout session, stop doing your exercises and begin a new activity like dancing or yoga or play an outdoor game. In other words, have fun while trying to get fit.

7. Develop an affinity towards fruits and vegetables. All the fruits may not be available during all the seasons. Opting for seasonal fruits and vegetables will do immense good to your health.

8. Develop the reading habit because this habit will enrich your mind. You will become more productive. Not only that, reading habit is a great stress-buster. Remember that stress will retard your progress in getting fit.

9. Get rid of dead-weight friends. Keep away from negative-minded and fault-finding friends. Similarly, keep away from lazy and inactive people. Negative-minded folks may corrupt your mind. In the case of lazy people, their lazy habit may rub on you.

Raman Kuppuswamy is a freelance writer who is capable of writing on many niches. Please visit http://hubpages.com/ @dreamdamodar to read the contents he has posted on Hub Pages.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Raman_Kuppuswamy/412011

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Three Ways to Have Fun and Avoid Weight-Gain on a Gluten-Free Diet


Three Ways to Have Fun and Avoid Weight-Gain on a Gluten-Free Diet

Three Ways to Have Fun and Avoid Weight-Gain on a Gluten-Free Diet
By Debbie A. Johnson

Once upon a time a woman who adored her cookies and cakes found out that she was much better off without them. How sad her life seemed as she looked for alternatives to gluten. The gluten-free cookies, cakes, and mixes were extremely high in carbohydrates like tapioca starch, bean flours, potato starch, and rice flour, the highest-glycemic level grain there is! You see, she was also border-line hypoglycemic and certainly didn’t want to become diabetic on top of everything else.

Gluten-Free Recipe

Oh what to do, what to do? She loved to bake and eat her sweets, so she used her creative imagination to come up with recipes made from almond meal flour before anyone (including her) had ever heard of it. She ground almonds in her blender and became braver and bolder each time she experimented with precious, food-stained recipes handed down from her mother. Her favorite was carrot cake and so she spent years perfecting it, including making a dairy-free “cream-cheese” icing recipe for her friends that could not handle the cow milk products.

Many years of experimenting brought her (meJ ) to a few successfully-slimming food conclusions:

1. For Flours – Lower the carbohydrate level by using almond meal flour and any seed or nut flours in all baking. Not that quinoa and amaranth are considered seeds, which is why they are higher in protein than other grains. Dry flours, like coconut flour and amaranth flour will absorb moisture from “wetter” flours like quinoa. Find the balance you need for the recipe.

2. For Sweetening – Lower the carbs and sugars even more by using just a little fruit (not fructose or fruit sugars, but real fruit, and avoid dates – much too sweet) and add as much whole-leaf Stevia (either the ground green leaf or the dark liquid extract for a happier pancreas) or whatever non-sugar sweetener you can handle.

3. For Flavor – Use the finest herbs, spices, and flavorings you can find. You are worth it! And keep the herbs and spices in the freezer. I keep them in the freezer door, easy to grab when I’m cooking. They stay fresh and delicious. Also, use plenty of good, healthy oils and fats. Clarified butter (can buy as ghee in international section of health stores) works wonders for flavor (chef’s secret!).

Happy Note: You can use any of the above ideas with pretty much any recipe. I did notice that for pie crusts I had to add an egg. For cookies, take them out. Who knew? Again, many years of experimenting.

Enjoy your experiments and viva la difference!

By Debbie Johnson, best-selling author of Think Yourself Thin as well as chef/author of top-selling gluten-free, low-glycemic cookbooks based on her GF/LG restaurant. See http://debbiejohnsonbooks.com Her newest is Gluten-Free, Low-Carb Desserts and Comfort Food You Will Love!

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Debbie_A._Johnson/206528

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