17 Weight Loss Tips- Simply Check Your Thyroid

10 Secrets About Your Metabolism That Can Help...
10 Secrets About Your Metabolism That Can Help You Lose Weight! – Avoid Late Night Eating (Photo credit: UrbaneWomenMag)

 

 

A  Healthy Thyroid Equals Balanced Weight loss

 

  1. Your thyroid dictates much of your metabolism, any malfunction or disease afflicting this area may cause you to have problems in metabolism leading to a drastic problem with your weight so you may either gain weight, lose weight, or may find that losing weight is harder than usual.
  2. Those that plan diets do not consider how their thyroid plus metabolism may affect their weight loss program. Most experts and even the media pitch in and recommend that the best way to lose weight is to cut down calorie intake.
  3. Those with a condition called hyperthyroidism suffer from an overactive thyroid leading to one having his or her metabolism skyrocket. If this is the case, then you will probably lose weight fast. This is a nice proposition for some who wish to lose weight. However, this is actually hazardous to the health.
  4. Aside from the medical difficulties such a disease brings, one will also notice weight problems as a result. These people have trouble keeping on weight and may notice weakness and bulging of the eyes. This disease may need special treatment from doctors.
  5. Hypothyroidism on the other hand works in the other direction by immediately slowing down the metabolism until the body gains weight at a regular rate. Like hyperthyroidism, hypothyroidism causes a general weakness in the body. It too may need special treatment and may cause serious health problems if left unattended.
  6. While cutting calories can be a challenge for most people to imagine, people involved in life and death struggles head to the supermarket to make serious decisions on whether to buy that extra box of sweets, or other foods they know aren’t quite healthy for them. Then some others have exactly the opposite problem.
  7. Instead of eating too many calories which is a problem in itself, they eat too little calories instead. The key is to find the midpoint. Balance.
  8. Problem? What Problem? The problem with some is that they believe that since the experts say that they have to cut calories, cutting calories to an inordinate amount will reap greater results. Unfortunately, it does not work that way. While cutting calories helps diets, consuming too little calories pushed the body into a hoard mode, the body’s metabolism slow to adapt to the lesser amount of available energy.
  9. If your body enters this mode, your body will work at such slow metabolism that losing weight becomes impossible. The technique here is to cut calories without the body slowing its metabolism. Only then can losing weight become easier.
  10. Another problem that can arise from decreased metabolism is that when your metabolism slows due to a drastic reduction in metabolism, and then you suddenly eat a good, hearty, calorie-filled meal, you are bound to gain more weight owing to the increased surplus of energy.
  11. This is why an imbalanced meal is highly discouraged among those that seek to lose weight. The sudden loss and increase of calories will cause an imbalance in a person’s energy consumption directly affecting fat deposit.
  12. Here is a simple computation to help you get to the right amount of calories you will need per day so that you get your nutrients in the right balance.
  13. First of all, multiply your weight in kilograms by 30. If you only know your weight in pounds, divide it by 2.2 to get to its English equivalent. We divide this number by 30 because that is the number of calories you need to support your weight per pound of weight.
  14. For example if your weight in pounds is 150, divide it by 2.2. That will give you a figure of 68.18. This is your weight in kilograms. Multiply this by 30 and you will arrive at the amount of calories you will need per day to keep up 150 lbs.
  15. You may consult a nutritionist to help you come lose weight. In the end it all comes down to math. If you consume more that your body needs, it stores it as fat. Now is probably a good time to start studying the back of those grocery cartons.
  16. Try to keep your diet at a 40% protein, 25% fat, and 35% carbohydrate meals at 300 calories per meal. Spread out these meals in a day for best results.
  17. While it can be simple computation to get at numbers, do not forget the earlier mentioned fact that the body adapts to its condition. Expose it to extreme ones and you may find yourself getting results you never wanted. Consult a nutritionist for more advice.

 

Weight Loss Exercise Just Makes Sense

Bill 1
Bill 1 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

A lot of us live our lives like we are bound by something unseen. Yes, still humans are built to move, too often many put themselves on activity restriction. We have bodies designed and quite able to  race across the savannas, but some live a lifestyle made up of: dragging along from the bed to the breakfast table; to the car seat; to the office chair; to the restaurant chair; to the living room couch and finally back to the bed.

 

It was not always this way. Not long ago in the United States, a man who worked on a farm did the equivalent of 15 miles of jogging every day; and his wife did the equivalent of 7 miles of jogging.

 

Today, our daily obligations of work and home keep us tied to our chairs, and if we want exercise, we have to desperately make time for it.

 

The fact is, health experts insist that the worldwide obesity situation is probably caused as much by lack of physical activity as by eating too much. Hence, it is important that people get revved up to move around.

 

However, that does not mean that a lap or two around the old high school track will offset a daily load of donuts. Exercise alone is not very efficient, experts say. They contend that if you just exercise and do not change your diet, you may be able to prevent weight gain or even lose a few pounds for only  a little while then the weight may just slide back on.

 

Nevertheless, it is not something that you are likely to sustain unless exercise is part of an overall program. The more regularly you exercise, the easier it is to maintain your weight. Here is what to do every day to make sure that you get the exercise you need.

 

1. Get quality rest preferably at night.

 

Make sure that you get adequate sleep. Good sleep habits are conducive to exercise, experts point out. If you feel worn out during the day, you are less likely to get much physical activity during the day.

 

In addition, there is evidence that people who are tired tend to eat more, using food as a substance for the rest they need.

 

2. Take A Walk

 

It is probably the easiest exercise program of all. In fact, it may be all you ever have to do, according to some professional advices of some health experts.

 

Gradually build up to at least 30 minutes of brisk walking five times a week. Brisk walks themselves have health and psychological benefits that are well worth the while.

 

3. Walk On A treadmill

 

When the weather is bad, you might not feel like going outdoors. But if you have a treadmill in the television room, you can catch up on your favorite shows while you are doing your daily good turn for your weight-maintenance plan.

 

Most of us watch television anyway, and indoor exercise equipment enables anyone to turn a sedentary activity into a healthy walk.

 

4. Go For It Today

 

Excuses aside, lack of time is certainly a limiting factor in most lifestyles. That is why health experts suggest a basic guideline for incorporating exercise into your schedule. If you needed another reason to get started, there are many.

 

Get as much exercise as you can that feels good without letting it interfere with your work or family life. If you need to, remind yourself that you are preventing many health problems when you prevent weight gain; and keeping your health in a manageable place is a gift to your family as well as yourself. Live lighter, live longer.

 

Seasonal Eating : What Foods To Enjoy This Winter.

You adjust your wardrobe with the seasons — your diet should be no different, especially because adjusting your diet in this way can benefit your body’s health. As seasonal shifts affect your body, the foods you eat can help you accommodate — or counteract — the changes.

As the weather turns cold, our activity levels tend to drop off and we burn fewer calories. That can lead to weight gain. Extra weight and other winter-related factors, such as declines in levels of vitamin D (the sunshine vitamin), have been associated with increases in blood pressure and cholesterol. Researchers have also noticed that in the cold months, our brains produce less serotonin, a “feel-good” chemical. This may be one reason we often feel so  depressed in winter and try to cheer up by eating cookies and other high-carbohydrate snacks. Your body knows what it needs (even if your brain doesn’t always make the best choices): As it happens, carbohydrates trigger serotonin production.

Your winter challenge: Eat healthful carbs, such as sweet potatoes and whole-grain pasta, to help your blood pressure, cholesterol and mood. Just stick with smart portions that won’t break the calorie bank.

Fix it with food: Potatoes, in season in the winter, are loaded with two blood pressure–lowering compounds: the mineral potassium and chemicals called kukoamines. Just remember that one serving of potato shouldn’t resemble a football — it’s around the size of a computer mouse. And stay away from frying or mounds of butter and sour cream. For healthful oven frites, cut a medium potato (try it with a sweet potato for extra health benefits) into thin wedges, drizzle with olive oil and a pinch of salt and roast until golden brown. Another serotonin-boosting choice: winter squash, such as butternut and acorn. It gives you a good carb fix along with a shot of potassium, which boots energy and protects the heart. For a quick meal, poke holes in a medium squash and bake until soft; cut in half and scoop out seeds. Fill with your favorite greens, such as baby spinach (they’ll wilt from the heat), and sprinkle with a handful of walnuts.

WHY eat the seasons?

There are a number of good reasons to eat more local, seasonal food:

  • to reduce the energy (and associated CO2 emissions) needed to grow and transport the food we eat
  • to avoid paying a premium for food that is scarcer or has travelled a long way
  • to support the local economy
  • to reconnect with nature’s cycles and the passing of time

but, most importantly, because

  • seasonal food is fresher and so tends to be tastier and more nutritious

Enjoying the Season’s Freshest Foods

In any other season, this would be as simple as making a trip to your local farmer’s market to stock up on the essentials. But many farmers’ markets close down for the winter. In this season of scarcity, you’ll probably need to call around to find a local farm that sells produce throughout the cold months.  Check out www.FoodRoutes.org for a list of farms near you.

Once you find a source and make over your pantry for winter, all that’s left is stirring and savoring. Availability will vary from region to region, but here’s a general list of foods that make winter their season, along with tips on how to incorporate these ingredients into your meals.

Winter Vegetables

  • Beets.  are in season in temperate climates fall through spring, and available from storage most of the year everywhere else. Fresh beets are often sold with their greens still attached.
  • Cauliflower. May be grown, harvested, and sold year-round, but it is by nature a cool weather crop and at its best in fall and winter and into early spring.
  • Kale. This hearty green is a rich source of minerals (including calcium), and although it is available year-round, it actually tastes the sweetest in the winter. To eat, wash leaves thoroughly and tear them into small pieces—discarding the touch stem. Place in a steamer and steam until tender (five minutes). Sauté in garlic butter or olive oil; sprinkle with soy sauce; or toss right into a hot bowl of soup to boost its nutritional content.
  • Leeks. A mild-flavored member of the onion family—and essential ingredient in potato-leek soup—this winter vegetable adds delicious flavor to many recipes. Try them in your favorite winter stew.
  • Radicchio. A type of bitter lettuce, radicchio can be grilled or used in salads.
  • Radishes. Most commonly used in green salads and vegetable trays, this spicy root vegetable can also be cooked as a side dish. Thinly slice radishes and steam them until tender. Then sauté steamed radishes in butter with a few cloves of garlic, a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, and a sprinkle of dried dill weed.
  • Rutabaga. Another root vegetable, try mashed rutabagas instead of mashed potatoes.
  • Turnips. These spicy root vegetables can be braised, sautéed, pickled, sun-dried, or roasted. As a rule, smaller turnips are usually tastier than large ones

Depending on your region, these citrus fruits may be abundant at this time of the year. If so, enjoy them for the rest of us! While they’re fabulous straight out of the peel, there are some creative alternatives for enjoying these vitamin-rich fruits.

  • Grapefruit. Try an orange-grapefruit-pomegranate compote for a healthy desert.
  • Lemons. Whip up a batch of lemon bars.
  • Oranges. How about some freshly-squeezed orange juice to start your day? Also try adding orange zest to some of your favorite baked goods, like muffins and sweet breads.
  • Tangerines. Toss a peeled tangerine into a blender along with frozen banana chunks and some orange juice for a smoothie
  • Chestnuts. Unless you live near a chestnut grove, you’ll be hard-pressed to find these nuts locally. But December is their season, so here are a few options for preparing these holiday treats. After slicing a slit into their smooth shell, they may be boiled (for 15-30 minutes) or roasted (baked for 15-20 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit, stirring occasionally). Eat them plain or incorporated into a recipe. Boil for 15-30 minutes, and then peel.

Here’s our guide to winter’s bounty.

Look for the winter fruits and vegetables below at farmers markets and in produce departments for the best flavor (and greatest value) in season. Specific crops and harvest dates will depend on your region’s climate and most of these are only available locally in temperate regions

Vegetables

Artichokes
Avocado
Bok Choy
Broccoli
Broccoli Rabe
Brussels Sprouts
Cabbage
Cauliflower
Celery Root
Chestnuts
Jerusalem Artichokes
Kale
Lettuce
Parsnips
Radishes
Rhubarb
Rutabaga
Salsify
Snow Peas
Squash (Winter)
Sweet Potatoes
Turnips (White)
Watercress

Fruits
Bananas
Blood Oranges
Clementines
Cranberries
Grapes (Red)
Grapefruits
Kiwi

Kumquat
Oranges
Passion Fruit
Pears
Persimmons
Pomegranates
Pummelo

Rhubarb
Satsuma Oranges
Tangelo
Tangerine
Ugli Fruit


Things that You Should Know about Processed Food and The Food Industry

With America‘s obesity problem among kids reaching crisis proportions, even junk food makers have started to claim they want to steer children toward more healthful choices. In a study released earlier this year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that about 32 percent of children were overweight but not obese, 16 percent were obese, and 11 percent were extremely obese. Food giant PepsiCo, for example, points out on its website that “we can play an important role in helping kids lead healthier lives by offering healthy product choices in schools.” The company highlights what it considers its healthier products within various food categories through a “Smart Spot” marketing campaign that features green symbols on packaging. PepsiCo’s inclusive criteria–explained here–award spots to foods of dubious nutritional value such as Diet Pepsi, Cap’n Crunch cereal, reduced-fat Doritos, and Cheetos, as well as to more nutritious products such as Quaker Oatmeal and Tropicana Orange Juice.

But are wellness initiatives like Smart Spot just marketing ploys? Such moves by the food industry may seem to be a step in the right direction, but ultimately makers of popular junk foods have an obligation to stockholders to encourage kids to eat more–not less–of the foods that fuel their profits, says David Ludwig, a pediatrician and the co-author of a commentary published in this week’s Journal of the American Medical Association that raises questions about whether big food companies can be trusted to help combat obesity.

Eating processed foods is a vicious cycle. They are convenient, they taste good, we get quick energy and pleasure then comes the slump. We rebound from this slump by eating even  more processed food and the vicious cycle continues.

No doubt they’re easy and they taste good. They’re everywhere you look. Grocery stores, gas stations, drug stores and even hard ware and farm supply stores. They’re the answer to our busy lifestyles, but just because they’re easy doesn’t mean they’re not causing a whole bunch of problems.

Over time, your energy drops. Perhaps you notice weight gain or other signs of aging. Processed foods seem like the answer to today’s busy lives. New fads and fancy advertisements make promises that keep us coming back for more.

But before you hit the vending machine or the fast food window, find out what the processed food industry doesn’t want you to know:

  1. Processed foods are addictive and can cause you to overeat.Whole foods are made up of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, fiber and water. When foods are processed the components of these foods are modified (for example, fiber, water and nutrients are removed) and in other cases, components are concentrated. In each case, processing changes the way they are digested and assimilated in your body.Eating highly processed or highly concentrated foods can artificially stimulate dopamine (the pleasure neurotransmitter), which plays a role in addiction. In this way, you are eating foods that lack nutrients and fiber, but create a pleasurable feeling. A food addiction starts because you feel good when you are eating these foods and they make you think they taste better. You crave that pleasurable feeling again and again and viola…this is what starts a food addiction.
  2. Processed foods are linked to obesity. Additives in processed foods, like high fructose corn syrup, sugar and MSG have been linked to weight gain and obesity. Dr. Mercola recently reported about a new study that showed childhood obesity could be reduced by 18 percent, simply by cutting out fast food advertisements during children’s programming. The Australian government is clearly more concerned about their children’s health as television advertisements to children were banned several years ago. Too bad the almighty dollar’s getting in the way of our kids health here in the US.
  3. Processed foods often contain ingredients that do not follow the principle of food combining, which can lead to low energy, poor digestion, illness, acidic blood and weight gain. An example would be a frozen meat and cheese pizza. Cheese (a dairy product), meat (an animal protein) and pizza crust (a grain product) make a terrible food combination that can wreak havoc on your digestive health.
  4. Processed foods contribute to an imbalanced inner Body system, which can lead to digestive problems, cravings, illness and disease. Beneficial microflora cannot survive in your digestive tract when you are poisoning them. Like us they thrive on foods that are made by nature not by man.
  5. A diet high in processed foods can lead to depression, memory issues and mood swings. Ingredients in processed foods are often the lowest cost and sub-par, nutritionally. For example, the fats and oils used in processed foods are refined, which means they are stripped of the essential fatty acids necessary for healthy blood sugar levels, moods and memory. Your heart, hormones and brain suffer when you choose to eat these fats and oils. Instead choose the organic, unrefined or “virgin” fats and oils.
  6. Processed foods often go hand in hand with “eating on the run” or multitasking. Most people will choose convenience if they are on the run and in today’s busy lives, who of us isn’t? Unfortunately, multitasking while eating causes people to lose touch with their natural appetite, often leading to weight gain. Additionally, multitasking sends the wrong signals to your digestive system, which needs to be in a restful mode to digest properly.
  7. Nutrition labels on processed foods are often misleading and have harmful health effects. Many labels say “sugar free,” but contain other sweeteners like agave, which is like high fructose corn syrup. Additionally, product labeling may hide ingredients like GM (genetically modified) foods and harmful additives like MSG. (These are hidden behind words on the label like “natural flavorings” or “approved spices”).
  8. Diets high in processed meats (like hot dogs and deli meats) have been linked to various forms of cancer, such as pancreatic cancer, colorectal cancer and stomach cancer.
  9. Eating too many processed foods can lead to infertility and malnutrition. Processed foods, like cereal, are stripped of important vitamins and nutrients that your body truly needs. You could be eating a large amount of calories and still be malnourished if your diet is high in processed foods.Animal studies have shown that over three generations, a deficient diet causes reproduction to cease.  Today, infertility is on the rise, affecting 7.3 million people in America.
  10. Processed foods are made for long shelf-life, not long human life! Chemicals, additives and preservatives are added to processed foods so that they will last for a long time without going rancid or affecting the taste of the food. Food manufacturers spend time, money and research on beautiful packaging and strategies to lengthen shelf-life, with little attention on how the foods will lengthen your life or create lasting health.
  11. Junk food makers spend billions advertising unhealthy foods to kids.  According to the Federal Trade Commission, food makers spend some $1.6 billion annually to reach children through the traditional media as well the Internet, in-store advertising, and sweepstakes. An article published in 2006 in the Journal of Public Health Policy puts the number as high as $10 billion annually. Promotions often use cartoon characters or free giveaways to entice kids into the junk food fold. PepsiCo has pledged that it will advertise only “Smart Spot” products to children under 12.
  12. The studies that food producers support tend to minimize health concerns associated with their products.In fact, according to a review led by Ludwig of hundreds of studies that looked at the health effects of milk, juice, and soda, the likelihood of conclusions favorable to the industry was several times higher among industry-sponsored research than studies that received no industry funding. “If a study is funded by the industry, it may be closer to advertising than science,” he says.  
  13. Junk food makers donate large sums of money to professional nutrition associations. The American Dietetic Association, for example, accepts money from companies such as Coca-Cola, which get access to decision makers in the food and nutrition marketplace via ADA events and programs, as this release explains. As Nestle notes in her blog and discusses at length in her book Food Politics, the group even distributes nutritional fact sheets that are directly sponsored by specific industry groups. This one, for example, which is sponsored by an industry group that promotes lamb, rather unsurprisingly touts the nutritional benefits of lamb. The ADA’s reasoning: “These collaborations take place with the understanding that ADA does not support any program or message that does not correspond with ADA’s science-based healthful-eating messages and positions,” according to the group’s president, dietitian Martin Yadrick. “In fact, we think it’s important for us to be at the same table with food companies because of the positive influence that we can have on them.”
  14.  More processing means more profits, but typically makes the food less healthy. Minimally processed foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables obviously aren’t where food companies look for profits. The big bucks stem from turning government-subsidized commodity crops–mainly corn, wheat, and soybeans–into fast foods, snack foods, and beverages. High-profit products derived from these commodity crops are generally high in calories and low in nutritional value.
  15. A health claim on the label doesn’t necessarily make a food healthy.  Health claims such as “zero trans fats” or “contains whole wheat” may create the false impression that a product is healthy when it’s not. While the claims may be true, a product is not going to benefit your kid’s health if it’s also loaded with salt and sugar or saturated fat, say, and lacks fiber or other nutrients. “These claims are calorie distracters,” adds Nestle. “They make people forget about the calories.” Dave DeCecco, a spokesperson for PepsiCo, counters that the intent of a labeling program such as Smart Spot is simply to help consumers pick a healthier choice within a category. “We’re not trying to tell people that a bag of Doritos is healthier than asparagus. But, if you’re buying chips, and you’re busy, and you don’t have a lot of time to read every part of the label, it’s an easy way to make a smarter choice,” he says.
  16. Food industry pressure has made nutritional guidelines confusing.  As Nestle explained in Food Politics, the food industry has a history of preferring scientific jargon to straight talk. As far back as 1977, public health officials attempted to include the advice “reduce consumption of meat” in an important report called Dietary Goals for the United States. The report’s authors capitulated to intense pushback from the cattle industry and used this less-direct and more ambiguous advice: “Choose meats, poultry, and fish which will reduce saturated fat intake.” Overall, says Nestle, the government has a hard time suggesting that people eat less of anything.
  17. The food industry funds front groups that fight antiobesity public health initiatives. Unless you follow politics closely, you wouldn’t necessarily realize that a group with a name like the Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) has anything to do with the food industry. In fact,Ludwig and Nestle point out, this group lobbies aggressively against obesity-related public health campaigns–such as the one directed at removing junk food from schools–and is funded, according to the Center for Media and Democracy, primarily through donations from big food companies such as Coca-Cola, Cargill, Tyson Foods, and Wendy’s.
  18. The food industry works aggressively to discredit its critics. According to the new JAMA article, the Center for Consumer Freedom boasts that “[our strategy] is to shoot the messenger. We’ve got to attack [activists’] credibility as spokespersons.” Here’s the group’s entry on Marion Nestle.  The bottom line, says Nestle, is quite simple: Kids need to eat less, include more fruits and vegetables, and limit the junk food.”
  19. Many supposedly healthy replacement foods are hardly healthier than the foods they replace. In 2006, for example, major beverage makers agreed to remove sugary sodas from school vending machines. But the industry mounted an intense lobbying effort that persuaded lawmakers to allow sports drinks and vitamin waters that–despite their slightly healthier reputations–still can be packed with sugar and calories.
  20. Less-processed foods are generally more satiating than their highly processed counterparts.  Fresh apples have an abundance of fiber and nutrients that are lost when they are processed into applesauce. And the added sugar or other sweeteners increase the number of calories without necessarily making the applesauce any more filling. Apple juice, which is even more processed, has had almost all of the fiber and nutrients stripped out. This same stripping out of nutrients, says Ludwig, happens with highly refined white bread compared with stone-ground whole wheat bread.

The bottom line, says Nestle, is quite simple: Kids need to eat less, include more fruits and vegetables, and limit the junk food.”