Friday, January 29, 2010

Don't be afraid to take one small step at a time — they'll add up to great strides!

Cholesterol: The Good, the Bad, and the Whole Picture

All this talk about cholesterol, lipids, and "good" and "bad" can be so confusing! Cholesterol and fat were things that we thought were always unhealthy, but research has shown that there are different types, some that increase the risk of heart disease and some that are actually protective! To check your risk of heart disease, your doctor may order a lipid profile test. This checks the levels of at least four lipid — fat — components in your blood:

* Total cholesterol: This is the total amount of cholesterol floating in your bloodstream, some of which may offer protection against heart disease, and some of which may increase your risk. Your total cholesterol level should be less than 200 mg/dl (milligrams per deciliter).

*LDL cholesterol: LDL, or low-density lipoprotein, cholesterol, usually labeled "bad," tends to adhere to the inside of blood vessel walls, building up blockages that can cause a heart attack. You want your LDL level to be low — ideally, less than 100 mg/dl, according to the American Heart Association. Between 100 and 129 is considered "near optimal," 130 to 159 is considered "borderline high," 160 to 189 is considered "high," and 190 and above is considered "very high."

* HDL cholesterol: This type of cholesterol is the one many people think of as "good" cholesterol. Instead of sticking to the lining of blood vessels, HDL, or high-density lipoprotein, cholesterol (the so-called good cholesterol) is brought to the liver to be removed from the body — so it reduces your risk of heart disease. You want your HDL level to be high — at least 60 mg/dl or higher. A low HDL level (less than 40 mg/dl for men; less than 50 mg/dl for women) increases the risk of heart disease.

* Triglycerides: These fats are also included in a lipid profile. Although it's not clear whether high triglyceride levels are a risk factor for heart disease by themselves, they usually go hand in hand with other risk factors, such as high total cholesterol or low HDL. If you are obese, inactive, drink a lot of alcohol, or follow a diet very high in carbohydrates, you may have high triglycerides. Your triglyceride level should be less than 150 mg/dl.

Have you gotten your lipid profile report? If not, make an appointment within the next seven days and commit to getting one. If you've already gotten the results and your lipid profile is good, that's excellent, but it doesn't mean you can eat whatever you want! You need to continue eating healthfully so those lipid levels can stay great!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Hit the Weights the Right Way

Hit the Weights the Right Way

Strength training — lifting weights — is important to building a strong, fit body. Lifting weights helps you tone your limbs and build muscle, and it's great for your bones and your metabolism. But when it comes to lifting weights, form is key! Using equipment incorrectly can cause pain and injury, and at the very least, your routine can lose some of its effectiveness.

To make sure you lift weights — whether in the weight room or at home — the right way, keep these simple tips in mind:

* Stand with your feet separated, one slightly in front of the other.

* Bring the weight as close to your body as possible before you lift.

* Bend at your knees to pick the weight up, and use your leg muscles to hoist it, not your back.

* As you lift and lower, keep your movements slow and smooth — don't jerk the weight to lift it!

* Stand tall — don't let the weight cause you to slump over.

* If a weight is too heavy, switch to a lighter weight and work your way up!

If you keep these tips in mind, your heavy lifting won't lead to a pain in the neck (or anywhere else!).

Monday, January 25, 2010

Get the Facts on Flax

The Little Seed With a Big Nutrition
-- By Becky Hand, Licensed & Registered Dietitian & Nicole Nichols, Health Educator

Flaxseed has been a part of human and animal diets for thousands of years. Even in the days of Hippocrates, flaxseed was eaten for its health benefits. Recently, however, flaxseed has gained popularity among health-conscious Americans. Despite the hype surrounding this little seed, a lot of people have never heard of it. It may not exactly be a wonder food, but flaxseed certainly has nutritional benefits.

Nutritional Benefits
Flaxseeds contain the following nutrients:

Lignans. Flaxseeds are one of the best plant sources for lignans, a type of phytoestrogen that may protect against certain types of cancer, including breast cancer and prostate cancer. Even the National Cancer Institute has identified its cancer-fighting potential.
Omega-3 fatty acids. Flaxseeds are the best plant source of healthy omega-3's, which are also found in fish. Fifty grams of flaxseed has about the same amount of omega-3's as three pounds of salmon!
Fiber. Flaxseeds contain both soluble and insoluble fiber, which keep the digestive system in tip-top shape.
Protein. Flaxseed is a complete protein source, meaning that it contains every amino acid that your body can't make on its own. It’s uncommon to find plant-based foods that are complete proteins, so flaxseed makes a great addition to vegetarian diets.
One tablespoon of flaxseed contains:
35 to 40 calories
1.6 grams of protein
2.8 grams of carbohydrate
2.8 grams of fat (0.3 grams saturated, 0.6 grams monounsaturated, and 1.8 grams polyunsaturated)
2.5 to 8 grams of fiber
3 milligrams of sodium

Health Benefits
Research shows that flaxseed may have the ability to:
Prevent cancer and reduce tumor growth in the breasts, prostate and colon
Decrease the risks of developing heart disease, blood clots, strokes, and cardiac arrhythmia by lowering total cholesterol, LDL (bad) cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood pressure
Regulate bowel functions and prevent constipation
Relieve breast pain related to a woman’s hormonal cycle
Help improve blood glucose control in diabetics
Help reduce inflammation associated with arthritis, Parkinson’s disease and asthma

Flaxseed Types
Most grocery stores do sell packaged flaxseed on their shelves, but natural foods stores tend to also offer sell flaxseeds in bulk form too. There are two "types" of flaxseed: brown and golden. Although the color and price differ, the nutritional benefits are the same. The brown flaxseed is less expensive than the golden, but because golden flaxseed is lighter in color, it’s easier to hide in a variety of foods.

Most stores sell flaxseed in three different forms:

1. Whole flaxseeds. You'll find golden or brown flaxseeds in bulk bins or pre-packaged. This is the most economical way to purchase flaxseeds. These will store well for long time because the seed is in tact. But to get the benefits of flaxseed, it must be ground before use (or chewed thoroughly). You can grind flaxseeds in a specialty flaxseed grinder (found at specialty kitchen stores or online), food processor, coffee grinder, or blender. Once ground, it must be stored in an air-tight, opaque container in the refrigerator or freezer. You can add whole flaxseeds to almost any food, even when baking.

2. Ground flaxseed. Also called "flaxseed meal," you'll find pre-packaged golden and brown varieties on the grocery shelf or refrigerated section—but not in bulk form. Ground flaxseed is slightly more expensive than whole flaxseed. Ground flaxseed is highly perishable when exposed to air and light, and it goes bad quickly. Buying ground flaxseed saves you the step of grinding the seeds yourself, but it must be stored in an air-tight and opaque container in the refrigerator or freezer after opening. You can add ground flaxseed to almost any food, even when cooking and baking.

3. Flaxseed oil. You'll find flax oil in opaque bottles in the refrigerated section or sometimes in capsules. Both flaxseed oil in a bottle and flaxseed oil capsules are considered to be "supplements," not "foods." Flaxseed oil and capsules is the most expensive way to purchase flaxseed. The oil is even more perishable than ground flaxseed and goes back quickly when exposed to air, light and heat. You can add flaxseed oil to many foods, but do NOT heat it or cook with it. Heat will cause flaxseed oil to go rancid and destroy its healthy properties. Only add flaxseed oil to chilled foods (like smoothies, salad dressings, yogurt, etc.) or to foods after cooking.

Serving Suggestions:

Smooth and flat, the little seeds have a nutty taste. Keep in mind that a little bit goes a long way. In general, consuming 1-2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed each day is considered safe for most adults. But it is possible to eat too much flaxseed. Some studies have shown nutrient and drug interactions when consumption reaches or exceeds 1/4 cup daily, so discuss this with your doctor and pharmacist. A small number of people may have an allergic reaction to flaxseed; therefore start with 1/2 teaspoon to see if an allergic reaction occurs.

More studies are needed to determine flaxseed’s effects in pregnant and breastfeeding women, but most researchers feel that 1 tablespoon daily is probably safe for this population. Check with your physician first. Studies have shown that lignans in flaxseed antagonize the action of some drugs (including tamoxifen) used by breast cancer patients.

Flaxseed can add flavor, texture and nutrients to almost any food!
*Sprinkle ground flaxseed on cereal, oatmeal, yogurt, salads, and coleslaw
*Enhance cold dressings, yogurts, sauces and smoothies with flaxseed oil
*Mix ground flaxseed into meatloaf and meatballs
*Add whole flaxseeds to granola bars, muffins and other baked goods
*Add ground flaxseeds to pancake, muffin, cookie batter and other baked goods
*Add ground flaxseeds to fish or chicken coating and oven-fry
*Sprinkle ground flaxseed on casseroles, sauces, soups and stews

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Over 45 Tips to Keep You Safe on the Road

Bicycle Safety Tips
Over 45 Tips to Keep You Safe on the Road
-- By Leanne Beattie, Health & Fitness WriterBicycle Safety Tips

Restaurant Nutrition Index

Restaurant Nutrition Index
An Alphabetized Index of Your Favorites
-- By SparkPeople
The truth about what nutrients make up your favorite restaurant foods.

Restaurant Nutrition Index

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Do you make your exercise a priority? Here are 5 ways to do so.....

5 Ways to make exercise a priority & a joy........

You know the magical payoffs that a little sweat can deliver, like a healthier heart, stronger bones, and a boost in energy. But knowledge doesn't always translate into action--not if your knees ache, you're too tired, or you're just plain bored with your workout. These five research-backed strategies can turn exercise from need to into want to--for life.

Pick up some weights
There's nothing like visible results to make you stick with a workout routine--and when you see what strength-training does for your body, you won't want to stop. Bones and muscles atrophy as you age, but lifting weights can slow or reverse the decline, says Miriam Nelson, PhD, director of the John Hancock Center for Physical Activity and Nutrition at Tufts University. Nelson's research shows that postmenopausal women who strength-trained twice a week for a year increased their bone density by up to 2%, added nearly 3 pounds of muscle, and lost about the same amount of body fat. "Biologically, they were 10 to 15 years younger than women who just went about their daily lives," says Nelson.

When women pick up dumbbells, they often get more active in the rest of their lives, too. "Once they're stronger, all activity becomes easier," Nelson says. Chains such as Curves and organizations like the YMCA make it easy to start (go to or Or check out Nelson's Web site ( for an at-home program.

Head outdoors
For New Jersey author Arline Zatz, 70, kayaking doesn't feel like exercise--it's stress relief. As water drips from her paddle, her concerns drift away. Indeed, when volunteers in one study walked either in a park or a shopping center, 71% of the outdoor group ended up less tense, while half of those who strolled in the mall said they were more anxious than when they'd started.

For a safe adventure, consider a guided tour. Adventures in Good Company organizes active vacations for women of all ages, from hikes in the Alps to gentle paddles around Minnesota's boundary waters ( Woman Tours offers guided bike trips for beginners and experts ( Or try bird watching, which Zatz calls hiking with a purpose--check your local chapter of the National Audubon Society (

Choose a joint-friendly workout
Aches and pains might seem like license to slack off, but exercise actually helps stave off osteoarthritis, says rheumatologist Patience White, MD, chief public health officer for the Arthritis Foundation. If you already have wear-and-tear arthritis, the right workout is a powerful antidote. "Exercise strengthens muscles, which stabilizes your joints," says White. "It also promotes weight loss--and losing just 15 pounds can reduce your pain by 50%."

The Arthritis Foundation runs aquatic exercise and tai chi programs around the country; both decrease pain and disability in people with arthritis ( or Other nonjarring exercises, such as qigong, swimming, walking, or bicycling, can also help.

By Christie Aschwanden

Friday, January 15, 2010

55 Million Americans Sickened by Swine Flu So Far

FRIDAY, Jan. 15 (HealthDay News) — An estimated 55 million people in the United States were infected with the H1N1 swine flu from the time the disease first emerged in mid-April until mid-December, and approximately 11,200 people died, federal officials reported Friday.

The flu, which is no longer causing widespread activity after peaking in November in 48 states, has also led to an estimated 246,000 hospitalizations, according to statistics from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Although swine flu infections are declining, health officials stress that there could be a resurgence of the disease. So they’re urging people to get vaccinated against the H1N1 virus, especially since vaccine supplies are now plentiful.

“Flu is unpredictable, and this flu season is far from over,” Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, said earlier this week. “Flu season typically lasts until May, and we don’t know whether there will be additional waves of flu illness. H1N1 is still circulating, it’s still dangerous, and there are still lives to be saved. That’s why it’s so critical for everyone to get vaccinated.

“While over 60 million people have received the H1N1 vaccine, over three-fifths of Americans have not yet gotten it,” she added.

Most states have opened up their H1N1 swine flu vaccination programs to anyone who wants a shot, not just those at high risk for complications from the disease, she said. Those at high risk include children and young adults, pregnant women and people with chronic health problems such as asthma and heart disease.

For most people, the H1N1 flu causes mild-to-moderate symptoms that typically clear up in about a week.

What sets the swine flu apart from the regular seasonal flu is that the H1N1 virus tends to target children and adults under age 60, while the seasonal flu typically strikes hardest at people 65 and older.

By way of comparison, the regular seasonal flu hospitalizes more than 250,000 Americans every year and causes an estimated 36,000 deaths.

More information

To learn more about the H1N1 swine flu, visit the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

— HealthDay staff

SOURCES: Jan. 15, 2010, news release, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Web site

Last Updated: Jan. 15, 2010

Obesity Rates Stabilize but Remain High

By Denise Mann

THURSDAY, Jan. 14, 2009 ( — Obesity rates in the United States are still sky-high, but for the moment they appear to have stopped climbing higher, according to new data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

One out of every three American adults is obese, and two out of every three are overweight, according to the data. Among children and teens, the numbers aren’t much better: Roughly 17% of children between the ages of 2 and 19 are considered obese. All of these percentages have increased sharply since 1980, the data show.

The obesity rate among women and children hasn’t changed measurably over the past decade, however, and it has remained largely flat among men for the past five years, according to the CDC report, which was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Obesity experts reacted positively to the report, but emphasized that there was little to celebrate about the big picture.

“The obesity rates have somewhat leveled off, and for the most part that’s good, but the bad news is that they have leveled off at a prevalence rate that is alarmingly high,” says Scott Kahan, MD, the co-director of the George Washington University Weight Management Program, in Washington, D.C. “We have a lot of work to do, and this has to be a national priority to move forward from here.”

Louis J. Aronne, MD, the director of the Comprehensive Weight Control Program at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center, says that “it’s premature to declare victory in our war against obesity, but this is the first battle that has been won.” He adds, “Obesity is still the leading nutritional health problem facing Americans and the leading driver of health-care costs. Stopping it from going up is a nice start, but more is needed.”

It’s not exactly clear what’s responsible for the stabilization of the nation’s waistlines. Experts say that the trend may be due to greater public awareness about healthy diets and the importance of regular exercise, and to the various school- and community-based programs that have been launched to fight the obesity epidemic. The growing popularity of gastric bypass surgery may also have played a role, according to Dr. Aronne.

“It could be that we’re finally having an impact on people’s behavior, and starting to take enough aggressive action with weight-loss surgery to stem the tide of obesity,” he says.

The data in the CDC report were based on height and weight measurements collected during a biannual national survey of more than 5,500 adults and 4,000 teens, children, and infants. Those measurements were then used to estimate the average body mass index (BMI) of various segments of the population. Obesity is defined as a BMI of 30 or above, and overweight is defined as a BMI of 25 or above.

Some groups are at greater risk for obesity than others, the survey showed. The prevalence of obesity among women (36%) was slightly higher than that among men (32%), and it was also higher among blacks (44%) and Hispanics (38%) than among whites (33%). The researchers caution, however, that these group differences in BMI may not present an accurate picture of obesity, since people of different ethnic groups tend to carry their weight differently and have different ratios of fat to lean tissue.

Excess weight has been implicated in more than 60 diseases, included heart disease, diabetes, and breast cancer, according to Dr. Aronne, who stresses that lowering the obesity rates must remain a national priority. “Obesity has to remain at the top of the list of problems we need to manage to improve the health of Americans and control health care costs,” he says.

The CDC researchers caution that obesity trends are difficult to forecast, and that while rates may have stabilized somewhat, “future large changes cannot be ruled out.”

Listing calorie counts and other nutritional information on menus, using taxes on junk food and soda to fund obesity programs or subsidize fruit and vegetable prices, and re-establishing physical education in the nation’s schools are “all part of the solution,” says Dr. Kahan.

“Obesity is now a part of the national dialogue,” he adds. “If we continue with our social and political will, we very well might see continued progress.”

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Remember that you are much too blessed to be stressed!

Don't Go Up In Smoke!

Feel Great!
Don't Go Up in Smoke!
If you don't smoke, give yourself a big pat on the back! Cigarette smoking is the most preventable cause of premature death in the United States today, so whether you've never smoked or you've quit successfully, keeping tobacco out of your life is a huge boost to your health.

If you do smoke, stopping today is absolutely the most important thing you can do for your health. You can improve your diet, get more exercise, and take plenty of the other steps recommended in my program, but none of these healthy habits will be able to undo the damage that continued smoking will do to your body.

But other steps you take toward improving your overall health may become even more effective after you've stopped smoking. For example, the American Institute for Cancer Research reports that within a few weeks of adding more fruits and vegetables to their diets, people who have stopped smoking have increased blood levels of antioxidants and decreased oxidative damage. In other words, fruits and vegetables can do a lot more good in your body if they don't have to compete against the toxins from smoking. It makes sense!

On another note, boosting your fruit and vegetable intake right away may actually help you quit smoking! An interesting study from Duke University found that fruits, vegetables, dairy foods, and noncaffeinated drinks like water and juice made cigarettes taste worse to smokers, while caffeine, alcohol, and meat tended to make them taste better. So eating plenty of fruits and veggies and drinking lots of water may help you in your efforts to quit.

Don't wait for tomorrow to stop smoking. Quit right now! I know you can do it! It will be worth it, I promise!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Eat-Clean Diet Book

The Eat-Clean Diet Expanded Edition
You had questions and Tosca answered them! The Eat-Clean Diet Expanded Edition covers the basic principles of Clean Eating and more by further developing key points of the Eat-Clean lifestyle. Clarification on supplements, cooler plans, and macronutrients all make this book the only guide you'll need for fast fat loss that lasts forever! Additions include three new menu plans and accompanying grocery lists, a new chapter for men, new information for vegetarian and gluten-intolerant Clean Eaters, and a food tracker. With these added tools and information, Tosca ensures that everyone -- including men, children and those with specific dietary restrictions -- can apply Clean Eating to their everyday life. Let The Eat-Clean Diet Expanded Edition transform you the way the original has for millions of others.

So, I got this book.....great book.

Your Ideal Commute

According to the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults study,
if you walk or bike rather than drive to the workplace, you're more likely to have healthier triglyceride levels and lower cholesterol. So get out of the driver's seat and walk or ride your bike to work (even if it's just once a week!).


"Does running late count as exercise?"-as seen on a T-shirt

Blast Fat Now!

Three ways to fight fat before getting out of bed.
by:By Sandy Braz

1. Sleep in.
A good portion of your fat fighting happens while you’re sleeping. According to research presented at the American Thoracic Society’s International Conference in 2009, leptin – the hormone that keeps you feeling satiated – is reduced when you’re low on rest, which could have you reaching for unplanned snacks throughout the day.
What to do:
Experts say to sleep for a minimum of seven hours each night. Try scheduling sleep like you schedule a meal or workout – write your bedtime down and stick to it.

2. Be mindful.
The August 2009 issue of Oxygen featured an article called “Think Yourself Strong and Lean,” which outlined the importance of the mind-to-muscle connection. According to recent research, being mindful when eating can help you shed pounds.
What to do:
The August 2009 edition of the Mayo Clinic Women's HealthSource reports that remaining mindful as you eat – such as chewing slowly to savor the taste and texture of your meal – can help you feel satiated longer, helping to reduce the need to reach for empty calories later on. For tips and ideas, pick up any issue of Oxygen.

3. Hydrate.
Studies show that drinking water first thing in the morning can help kickstart your metabolism and turn on your fat-burning engines.
What to do:
Grab a glass of water before bed and have it sitting on your nightstand so you can hydrate your body first thing in the morning before you get busy preparing for your day.

For more Fat Loss tips:Robert Kennedy's Oxygen Women's Fitness

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

What Does "Organic" Mean?

There is so much buzz these days about the origins of food — where it's from and how it was farmed. Because it's important to eat the healthiest, safest food possible, you're doing a great thing for yourself and your family by making careful choices! I recommend that you eat organic as much as possible — but the labels that proclaim foods to be organic vary.
If you've ever bought organic produce or meat, you've probably seen stickers on the packaging. Here's a quick guide to help you understand what's on these labels!

USDA Organic or 100% USDA Organic: This is the gold standard in the United States for organic certification. Anything bearing the USDA Organic label was made with at least 95 percent organically produced ingredients, the 100 percent USDA Organic label is reserved for foods that are entirely organic — meaning they were produced without hormones, pesticides, or other dangerous chemicals. Now, that's responsible shopping!
Certified Naturally Grown: This label is used by smaller farms that adhere to the USDA guidelines for organic food. Foods marked this way are usually only sold locally.
All Natural: Take this food label with a grain of salt. In fact, you might want to take the whole shaker! The United States has yet to officially define the term "natural," so it can be used whatever way the food manufacturer wants!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Foods that Blast Fat

Need a Fat-Burning Boost?
Add these foods to your shopping list.
by Jordana Brown ~ winter 2010

When your goal is to be lean, these foods can help you get there faster. Here's what's behind 11 superfoods.

These easy-to-find foods will fuel you up with key nutrients that help you lose fat faster.

SALMON-Active ingredient:omega-3 fatty acid
Conventional nutrition wisdom holds that you should eat salmon because it's a rich source of healthy omega-3 fatty acids, but we'll tell you to eat it because those fats will help you burn fat. Those omega-3's are so powerful, in fact that they can actually turn on genes that increase fat-burning and turn off genes that regulate fat storage, all while making sure your cardiovascular system stays healthy.

EGGS-Active ingredients:protein, healthy fats
When researchers at Saint Louis University in Missouri fed dieting subjects a breakfast that included two eggs, the found that those subjects reported feeling fuller throughout the day and ate less at lunch than subjects who didn't have eggs for breakfast. Incidentally, keep the yolk in there--it's full of healthy fats and vitamins A, D, and E.

GINGER-Active ingredient:gingerol
Popular in Eastern cuisines, ginger boost metabolism via two mechanisms. It appears to increase oxygen consumption by muscles, which burns more calories. It also increases lactic acid production, which in turn increases growth-hormone production, which then increases the amount of fat released from fat stores to be burned as fuel.

AVOCADO-Active ingredients:monounsaturated fats, mannoheptulose
This strangest of fruits contains a number of compounds that promote fat loss. First, it's high in healthy monounsaturated fats, which are less likely to be stored as body fat and also have been shown to reduce weight when eaten in place of carbohydrates. Second, avocados contain a sugar called mannoheptulose, which is associated with blunting insulin release, and since excess insulin is levels can go a long way toward keeping normal body fat levels.

TOFU-Active ingredient:genistein
Soy is another powerhouse food. Genistein, an isoflavone responsible for many of soy's health promoting effects(from reducing the risk of several cancers to promoting cardiovascular health), also appears to be the main factor responsible for boosting fat-burning, as it reduces appetite and abdominal fat.

GRAPEFRUIT-Active ingredient: naringin
We would never advocate a diet consisting solely of grapefruit(don't laugh, people actually do try diets like this.) but eating some may help you get lean. It would appear that the responsible party is a compound called naringin, an antioxidant with fat-blasting properties. It's an ideal snack or a great addition to any meal.

POMEGRANATE-Active ingredients:massive antioxidant load, conjugated linoleic acid (CLA)
Scientists are still hard at work uncovering all of the health benefits of this ancient fruit, but as of now, we know that it is 300 times better than its fellow fruits at protecting nitric oxide(NO) in the body. Since NO is associated with increased fat-burning, it's worth protecting. New research also shows an added benefit to eating pomegranate seeds, called arils. They contain CLA, which, in the study, helped rats fed a high fat diet to gain less weight.
Try this: Mix a scoop of whey protein with 1 cup of 100% pomegranate juice for the perfect preworkout shake.

DAIRY-Active ingredients:calcium, protein
Research abounds that dairy products can help you lose weight. One review concluded that diets high in calcium slow fat storage and increase both thermogenesis (fat-burning) and metabolism. Another study found that when people drank two glasses of skim milk with breakfast, they felt fuller and ate less at lunchtiem than people who drank juice-thanks to milks's protein content.

CHILI PEPPERS-Active ingredient:capsaicin
It's the compound that makes chilis spicy, and inthe body, it spices up your metabolism by triggering an increase in the hormone adrenaline. Studies, including a new one published in the journal Clinical Nutrition, have found that capsaicin can even reduce hunger and increase satiety, or feelings of fullness, to help you eat less. It also appears to annihilate fat cells, directly reducing fat stores.
Try this: Combine 1/2 cup orange juice, 2 tbsp olive oil and 1 sliced jalapeno pepper to make a spicy marinade. Add 2 chicken breasts and let marinate in the refrigerator for at least one hour or up to 24 hours. Then cook as desired.

GREEN TEA-Active ingredients:epigallocatechin gallate(EGCG), caffeine
While caffeine is well-known fat burner, it is not the most powerful component of green tea. Instead, EGCG, the phytochemical also responsible for green tea's myriad health benefits, has been shown to increase metabolic rate and burn through fat.
BONUS: Drink 3 cups a day for best results.

SPINACH-Active ingredients:glutathione,alpha lipoic acid, fiber
A cup of cooked spinach contains a mere 41 calories and two powerful detoxifying nutrients-glutathione and lipoic acid-along with soluble fiber, which performs the nifty fat-ridding job of binding to bad cholesterol(LDL) in your digestive system and dragging it out of your body.
Try this: use pre-bagged spinach as the "lettuce" in your sandwiches and salads, heated in soups and wilted in pasta.

Get a variety of color in your diet to ignite your body's fat-burning furnace.

Yoga Poses That Burn Fat

Yoga Poses That Burn Fat | Women's Health Magazine

Saturday, January 2, 2010

The most important thing about motivation is goal setting. You should always have a goal.

Francie Larrieu Smith
more famous quotes

Friday, January 1, 2010

Getting the Kids to Eat Right

Q: How do I get my kids to eat healthier? They turn their noses up at anything that's good for them.

A: Encourage them to try lots of different things! It usually took about five to eight tries before I found healthy meals that my girls liked! Don't worry — as they grow up, their palates will develop. But for now it's a good idea to make a list of fun, healthy snacks that they can enjoy. For a yummy fruit dip, combine one cup of applesauce with one cup of low-fat flavored yogurt and serve with sliced strawberries, apples, bananas, pineapple, or grapes. You should also get your kids interested in fitness — it's important to get them eating right and exercising at an early age!

Take the Flax-Seed Challenge!

Did you know you can get the heart-healthy benefits of omega 3s from a little seed? If you haven't tried flax seeds yet, what are you waiting for? Besides omega 3s, flax seeds offer a host of other nutrients, including fiber, zinc, iron, and calcium! The key is to grind the flax seeds first so you get the full benefits; otherwise the hard shell is difficult to break down, and it may pass through your digestive system without being digested. You can use a coffee grinder or food processor to grind the seeds, or you can buy them already ground at the supermarket. (The shelf life is longer if you grind them yourself.)

It's simple to enrich your diet with the hearty, slightly nutty flavor of flax. Breakfast is a great time to work it in. Sprinkle a teaspoon or two over yogurt, mix it into your breakfast cereal, or blend it into a smoothie. If you're a baker, add flax seeds to muffin batter or knead them into bread dough. You can also try using flax seeds to thicken soups or add a bit of texture to a casserole dish.

Take my flax-seed challenge and fit flax into your diet every single day in the coming week. C'mon, it's not that hard — and just to prove it, I'll do it too!
Unleash your life's potential! Don't hold back on the things you've always wanted to do. Go for it!

Lean Protein

Stumped about what to make for dinner? No problem! Fish can be a great way to add some variety to your meals!

Fish is a good source of protein without the saturated fat found in meats. And many types of fish are also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which can boost heart health. Mackerel, herring, sardines, lake trout, albacore tuna, and salmon are all rich in omega-3s. The healthiest way to prepare the latest catch is to bake or grill it with olive oil, spices, and lemon wedges.

Shrimp (boiled, broiled, eaten hot or cold in a salad) is ideal to help you get out of a dinnertime rut — and scallops, too. And did you know that canned salmon is a slammin' way to add extra calcium to your diet?

Fish and shellfish — it's all good!


Adjust your priorities. Here's a simple lesson: If you value something, you'll do it. So when you place exercise as one of the last things on your to-do list, odds are you won't get to it. Make exercise your top priority, and you'll find the time.

Set Goals. Make your goals clear and attainable. Instead of, I'm going to exercise more, try: I'm going to get up at 7 a.m. every Monday, Wednesday and Friday and walk on the treadmill for 30 minutes. It's precise, realistic and easy to achieve.

Make it personal. Don't just view exercise as a way to shed pounds. Find something of personal value that it provides, like a spicier sex life or the ability to play with your kids. Remind yourself of these benefits whenever your motivation wanes.

Get a Sexy Stomach by Spring!

This season, it's time to get that midriff you've always wanted! While your regular cardio workouts are important for burning the fat that's lying on top of your stomach muscles, you'll also want to work your abs with twisting crunches — you'll whittle your middle in no time!

Start by lying flat on your back, making sure that there is no space between your spine and the floor or mat. Contract your abdominal muscles and lift your head and shoulders about 6 inches off the floor, but don't use momentum to lift yourself; you should truly feel your stomach muscles squeezing! Then, twist slightly to the side, reaching your hand to the outside of your right thigh. Keep your shoulders off the floor, holding the reach, and pulse for two sets of 8 to 12 reps; if your neck starts to hurt, double-check your positioning. After you rest for 15 seconds, switch to the left side and repeat the exercise.

With practice, crunches will have your stomach looking the best it ever has!

Learn to Meditate

You've probably heard about the benefits of meditation, but did you know that a regular meditation practice may help you fall asleep or sleep more deeply? Meditation is not as complicated as you might think. In fact, there are a number of simple ways to meditate — gazing at a candle flame, sitting alone in a quiet space, or following a guided meditation DVD or podcast. If you're up for it, consider taking a seminar about meditation and its benefits. Besides learning a particular type of meditation, you can also ask questions and learn more about how meditation has affected others.

The most convenient aspect of meditation is that you can do it anytime, anyplace, and for as long or as briefly as you want — just five minutes can provide results. Plus, it costs nothing; all you need is a quiet location and time to be relaxed and alone with your thoughts!

With time, you may notice that your regular meditation practice has some additional benefits. It may help alleviate feelings of stress, depression, or anxiety, and it may even lower your blood pressure. With all those benefits, what do you have to lose?

Push Past Your Weight-Loss Plateau!

Have you hit the dreaded weight-loss plateau? You were doing great for a few weeks, maybe several months, but then, suddenly, you stopped losing weight and you haven't done anything differently! Before you get frustrated and throw out that scale, take a deep breath. I have a few tricks that just might push those numbers down again!

The first step to take is to check your portions. You're probably used to "guesstimating" portion size by now, but trust me on this one — break out the measuring cups again. If you've been on a weight-loss program for a while, it's not uncommon for your portion sizes to get larger and larger with time. That little extra bit of rice here and an extra bite or two of chicken there could be what's blocking your progress.

It might be more than just a little bite or two more, which is why you should also start keeping a food log, writing down every single thing you put in your mouth for at least a week. Then sit down and evaluate your intake — do you see extra calories sneaking in at specific times of the day? Maybe you find it particularly hard to control portions of certain foods. You might even find that just the act of writing it all down makes you more accountable — so you'll think twice before you take a bite!

Finally, shake up your fitness routine by increasing the intensity. Push yourself to walk or run a little faster, bike a little longer, or swim three or four more laps. If you're not yet doing any type of strength training, add it to your routine ASAP. Building muscle is a key to boosting your metabolism so that you burn more calories, even when you're not exercising. Plus, toning up can make a huge difference in how you look and how clothing fits even if you don't lose any more weight!

Challenge yourself to put my proven steps to the test — starting right now! I know you'll be thrilled with the results!

Day 1 RevAbs 90 Day Challenge

Goal during this 90 Day Challenge is to get tone abs. Main target is my Abs. Not so much my weight because I am in a size 0-4 right now. I am eating healthy. So the main issue is to get my Abs tone.
Starting weight 110lbs
Bust 36
Waist 29
Hips 33
Personal Body Fat 20%
Before Photos

Happy New Year 2010

New Year!

Happy New Year from my family