Healthier Living

Healthier living seems like an easy task to do. All that needs to be done is to exercise and eat right. However, it is not as simple as that. Fortunately, there are ways that people can live healthier by making a few changes in life.

Enhancing a Snack
Eating right is extremely hard. Go into a supermarket, and people can discover plenty of sugary and unhealthy snacks, desserts and other meals to eat. That being said, there are ways to deal with the challenge. Begin by making a small change in the food that is purchased. Buy some bananas or another healthy fruit. When it is time for an annual snack, have the fruit with the snack. Having fruit can fill someone up, and he or she is less likely to have more unhealthy snacks because they feel full.

Dealing with Breakfast

breakfast, healthy living, healthy breakfast
Breakfast has been referred to as the most important meal of the day. While some may dispute this fact, the truth remains that breakfast is quite important and necessary for children and adults. Breakfast can remain a challenge for people. After all, some people like to sleep in, and it is hard to wake up in the morning. Other people have many items to do before going to work or school. Whatever the reason or explanation, some people do not eat a productive breakfast. A sugary donut or something similar may be what people choose when they are on the run. Instead of going that route, consider something yummy and delicious that addresses the hunger cravings of an individual as well as meeting dietary needs. Great items can include protein shakes, tasty fruit and other such items that can provide a body with the protein and energy that is needed for the day.

Getting Out
There are constantly shopping needs and errands to run each day. Use those tasks appropriately by making them exercise challenges. Instead of parking close to a store, park far away and walk. Although the calories may seem minimal, even a little exercise makes a difference. In addition to this, it is a great way to start eating healthy.

Many people assume that making big decisions will help them to live better. The truth is that small and productive steps can be just as helpful. It takes time, but the effort is worth it. The human body will respond positive changes.

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Finding the Best Food for Building Muscles

A good workout routine combined with a well balanced diet is an effective formula for a fit and healthy body. The type of exercises or activities and food that one chooses would depend on one’s fitness goals. Weight lifting and other gym activities are popular among those who want to build their muscles. This regimen can be complemented with high protein food for building muscles and a healthy load of carbohydrates for extra energy during workout. Here are some of the best protein-packed foods that can help you build strong and healthy muscles.

Dairy products like eggs and milk are two of the best options for a high protein diet. Eggs are a good source of high quality protein, approximately 6 grams in one egg, along with nutrients like Choline, Vitamins A, B and E, Selenium, and Lutein. However, those who are watching their cholesterol levels should stay away from the yolk and eat the egg whites only. Egg yolks have approximately 212mg of cholesterol. Wash down your eggs with milk and you get around 20 grams of protein from 8 oz of cow’s milk.

Fish and poultry are also excellent candidates as food for building muscles. Meat products are excellent sources of amino acids but the lower fat content of poultry and fish offer healthier options over pork and beef counterparts.

There are also nuts, grains, and legumes that are rich in protein and nutrients to help build muscles. A combination of almonds and soybeans make a power packed trail mix for a body builder. ¼ cup of almonds contains approximately 8 grams of protein plus mono-saturated fats and magnesium. The same amount or roasted soybeans is packed with approx 15 grams of protein and a healthy dose of potassium and fiber.

Those who require gluten-free diet can turn to Quinoa or the mother of all grains as the Incas call it. This grain contains 9 essential amino acid, fiber, magnesium, and iron. There is a wide variety of food for building muscles choosing the best combination depends on your physical condition, fitness goals, and food preference.

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Fight Fat with these Five Foods

When you think about losing weight, it’s natural that your first thoughts might be about doing more exercise and going on the dreaded ‘diet.’

Being active is always great for keeping fit and maintaining a healthy weight, but there’s a very big difference between going on a diet and having a healthy one.

Dieting is temporary, and so are its results.

To lose weight and keep it off in the long run, you need to make your meals work for you and one of the easiest ways to do that is to make smarter food choices and eat plenty of those which naturally burn fat.

Yes – you read that right, some foods actually burn fat!

To maximise the results of any weight loss program you embark on, include these five foods in your daily diet and get those stubborn kilos, gone for good:

Chia Seeds

chia seeds, fight fat

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These tiny seeds are packed with fibre, protein and omega-3 and are thought to stabilise blood sugars and reduce cholesterol. They help to boost your metabolism and get your glucagon hormone, the one responsible for burning fat, kick-started.

Chia seeds are versatile enough to use in all sorts of recipes, from salads to puddings, so go nuts (or should we say seeds!) and add them to your favourite dishes.

Avocado

Anyone who tries to convince you that this green fruit (yes, fruit, not vegetable) is fattening, is either a fool or has shares in a burger chain. Ignore them.

The monosaturated fat in avocadoes is the good kind. It actually helps to plump up cell membranes and block fat-storing hormones while its other nutritional contents help your body to absorb the goodness from other foods and make you feel fuller for longer.

Slice them up in salads or wraps, or mash them up with lime and coriander for a fresh and tasty guacamole.

Chilli Peppers

chilli peppers, fight fat, burn fat

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Hot peppers contain capsaicin, a natural compound that heats your body up and as your body responds to cool you down, it literally melts calories.

Try adding fresh, powdered, dried chillies or hot sauce to your cooked meals and salads.

Whole Grains

Foods which are rich in fibrelike brown rice, oatmeal and even popcorn (as long as it’s not coated in caramel!) give your digestive system a real workout.

They help to keep your gut healthy and while it’s working hard, it’s burning calories too. Bonus!

Green Tea

You need a drink to wash all that goodness down and a scientific study by The American Journal of American Nutrition found that green tea has a thermogenic effect, which means that it burns calories efficiently.

Aim to drink four or more cups a day and if you find it a little bitter, add a squeeze of lemon juice to sweeten the taste, boost your immune system and aid digestion.

To find out more about fat-burning foods and how to squish them into your diet to be healthier or lose weight, become a member of Curves and you’ll get great advice on nutrition and meal planners that make it easy.

What is Lactose Intolerance?

lactose intolerance, stomachacheLactose intolerance is a common digestive problem where the body is unable to digest lactose – a type of sugar chiefly found in milk and dairy produce. Signs of this condition include a bloated stomach, flatulence (wind) or abdominal pain and diarrhea. This digestive problem is more common among natives of Australia, people from Africa, Asia, Middle East and some Mediterranean countries.

How does lactose intolerance occur?
Enzymes called lactase, which are found in the mucus of the small intestine breaks down the milk sugar or the lactose. The milk sugar is changed into two simpler sugars called glucose and galactose.

When the body does not produce enough lactase enzyme, this causes the lactose to stay in the digestive system where it is fermented by bacteria. This fermentation process causes the symptoms associated with lactose intolerance.

How to diagnose Lactose Intolerance
If someone is suspected of being lactose intolerant, it is best to consult with a doctor. People sometimes wrongly “self-diagnose” and this concerned many experts because this should be done by them to avoid missing out on the health benefits that milk products give.

Diagnosis of lactose intolerance can be done with the following methods:

  • Hydrogen breath test – the amount of hydrogen that is breathed out is measured in this procedure. More hydrogen is produced when lactose is fermented by bacteria in the bowel instead of being converted by lactase enzyme.
  • Elimination diet – this requires removing food that includes lactose to determine if the symptoms progress. If the symptoms happen again once the food is again given, then lactose intolerance is most probably the reason.

How to treat Lactose Intolerance
Regulating intake of food and drink containing lactose is the primary treatment for lactose intolerance.

People with this condition also vary in their level of tolerance. Some may need extra calcium and vitamin D supplements to maintain bone health and keep them strong.

Seeking consultation from dietitians is also suggested since they know what’s the best diet for a person.

Lactase drops is also an option and is available in the market. These can be added to the meals or drinks to better the lactose digestion.

Note that lactose intolerance is different from food allergy. If one is allergic to something, even a little amount can be sufficient to start a reaction . On the other hand, most people with lactose intolerance  can nevertheless eat small amounts of lactose with no ill-effects.

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How Do You Know You’re Constipated?

A digestive system which includes a colon, intestines and the necessity to move the bowels is a feature that is common among all mammals. These organs are necessary in order to ensure that we are able to move solid waste from our body, continuing to promote a clean system and good health. In human beings, the condition of a bowel movement, including its colour, shape and density, is one of the easiest ways to analyse the health of an individual. The waste contains enzymes from the body’s digestive system and its physical qualities indicate the state of the digestive system. When the body, particularly the digestive system, is in distress, it is possible that bowel movements will be especially loose and need to be passed frequently or be overly compacted and unable to be moved. The condition in which the bowels are compacted and it is difficult or impossible to move waste is called constipation.

How Do I Know If I Am Constipated?

constipation, constripatedThe first and most obvious indication of constipation is the inability to move your bowels. Most people’s digestive systems, when they are functioning as they ought to, leave them with an idea of how many times they pass waste in a day or a week on average. A person with a healthy digestive system generally passes a bowel movement at least once a day. If the number of times you move your bowels decreases over a couple of days or becomes non-existent, you are likely constipated. You may feel the urge to pass waste and have an aching sensation in your colon or intestines, feeling swollen. Some diffuse symptoms of constipation include the retaining of water in the hands or feet, a headache and pain in the lower back. It is important to know that if constipation does not resolve itself and remains untreated, it can turn into a severe medical issue called an intestinal blockage. This issue often requires a visit to a hospital in order to be resolved.

How Do I Treat My Constipation?

Being constipated is an uncomfortable state that only continues to feel worse as time progresses without a bowel movement. When treating the issue, symptoms may take a day or two to fully resolve as the bowels are emptied. The most important thing that someone suffering from constipation can do is to drink as much water as possible. Dehydration can cause issues with hardened bowels, and increasing hydration levels by consuming at least eight glasses of water a day can help the condition to resolve. Stimulant laxatives are an option that can assist the bowels to move, but it can also cause overly loose stools after the fact. In some cases, a glycerin suppository inserted into the anus is an appropriate solution, as it helps to lubricate the rectal package to allow waste to move more easily. If this is not on the top of your list to do, try a fast acting laxative before going through any extreme procedures.

In order to prevent future constipation, staying hydrated is a must. In addition, adding fibre to the diet helps to make stools bulky but soft, making them easier to pass. Probiotic yoghurt is another solution that many people turn to, as the bacteria in the yogurt help to regulate the digestive system and encourage healthy bowels.

Mandy is a stay-at-home mum with 2 children in primary school, in her past time she loves to garden, travel, cook and write blogs for other stay at home mums and anyone with similar interests.

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