Health

Corona Virus: The Pandemic We Know Very Little About!
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It was the turn of 2019 and the world was looking to celebrate the New Year. All the celebrations and preparations were in order in every country of the world, and that was the moment that the tide turned for the worse. The World Health Organization was informed of a deadly virus called COVID-19 (or Coronavirus) that had spread in a sleepy little town of China and was all set to shake up the world order on its own terms soon enough.No one has ever been the same ever since. This new and deadly pandemic has accounted for thousands of lives so far and it is still on a rampage for many more from around the world. Worse, there is little to no awareness in several parts of the world and this has further made the way to its containment a lot harder.  Today, we take a satellite view of the rising issue of Coronavirus so that you could stay safe and live through the time in a sane manner. Prior to that, here’s a recap of all that we know of it and just how you could do your part to stay safe.Dated 31st December 2019: China’s Wuhan city was grappling a virus strain that the mankind had never heard or dreamt of, and all the efforts made by the local authorities to contain it were proving futile. The Chinese government had tried its best to include some tier arrangements like sealing geographical borders and discouraging international air travel but to no avail. The virus continued to spread and it was never in the business of taking prisoners. The World Health Organization too was rattled beyond belief and it shot out a host of precautionary advisories on a cosmopolitan level.Dated 16th March 2020: The situation is just all the more alarming now with the virus spreading around the world like a wildfire. Several European countries like Italy and Spain are now staring down the barrel with a large number of casualties even as China continues to try its best to contain the issue. The UK and the US too are clueless with their share of casualties so far. India, with its class-leading medical faculties and reputation of medical tourism, had withdrawn its students in China last month by airlift and in Iran earlier last week. Anyone infected here is being treated to the best of medical resources available. If it were not so life-threatening, no country would have made a huge uproar over it.The key is not to press the panic button!Yes, as much as it is important to be aware of the COVID-19 or Coronavirus, it is also important not to press the panic button now. No matter what country you are living in, please rest assured that your respective local government is doing its best to keep you safe and secure. Your government should also be keeping a tab on all the latest updates on the Coronavirus in China and any medical breakthrough would be communicated to you at the earliest. Please find below some of the best preventive measures for Coronavirus that you should follow:Do not spread or believe in rumors, especially through WhatsApp or Social media.Maintain personal hygiene.Wash your hands with antiseptic or antibacterial soap regularly. Alcohol-based handwashes are best when you use them after sneezing or before or after eating or drinking something. Keep a safe distance of three feet from anyone who is sneezing and/or coughing.Avoid touching your face and lips every now and then.Try to avoid physical contact with hands at the time of greeting someone.Wear N95 or other approved masks.Most importantly, seek immediate medical assistance if you have fever, a running nose or if you are experiencing any difficulties in breathing.Also self quarantine yourself if you have contacted the virus and the same has been confirmed medically. Pro Tip: For those who are 60 years or older, it comes highly recommended to get yourself additionally checked for any cardiovascular disease, respiratory ailment, diabetes or any other persistent health issue. The reason is that while these diseases may not be directly related to the Coronavirus, they would certainly bring down your body’s resistance to the pandemic itself. Coronavirus: Symptoms, Myths, and Treatments available Coronavirus is a new infectious strain that may be best described as deadly, however there have been a few survivors too. Its consequent symptoms are usually very simple and that often lets people take it lightly- and it is just the mistake that you should not commit. We are presenting its list of symptoms below for a ready reference: Sore throatRunning noseCoughFeverWeaknessDifficulty in breathing We are also debunking some popular myths regarding COVID-2019 below:The virus spread is limited to countries with hot and humid climates.The virus is spreading across the world at an alarming rate and it makes no distinction on the basis of climates and geographical boundaries. Extreme temperatures can kill the virus.There has been no conclusive evidence to suggest that very hot or very cold temperatures can kill the COVID-19 virus and thus cure a patient. Hot steam bath can keep you safe.As mentioned above, temperature has no effect on this virus. You might only burn yourself in the process of taking a very hot steam bath under unsupervised conditions. The Coronavirus can be transmitted through bugs and mosquitoes. There are no medical reports so far to confirm that someone could be infected from this virus through bugs or mosquitoes.  Ultraviolet lamps can be used to disinfect hands and kill the virus.This myth is especially important to debunk. Human bodies are not meant for consumption of ultraviolet radiations and anyone trying to disinfect oneself through these radiations would only be courting disaster. Pneumonia and Flu medications can keep one safe.It comes highly recommended that one should not rely on prevalent medications for flu or pneumonia to deal with Coronavirus Disease. There are also no medications, as prescribed by the World Health Organization (WHO), for this deadly disease so far. Eating garlic or cloves can cure the virus.Stay away from such unfounded home remedies. There is no medically conclusive evidence to suggest that eating garlic, onions or cloves could have any effect on COVID-19 virus. United We Stand, Divided We Fall!This virus strain is new and is way more evolved than the previously encountered SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) and MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome) viruses of the past decade. The mortality rate of COVID-19 is way more than those of SARS and MERS combined and it would take sometime for the medical world to devise a befitting reply. COVID-19 has no WHO-approved treatment available so far. Several WHO-backed medical organizations are trying their best to devise a medicine to contain the onslaught of this virus and we are positive that someday we would be able to get on top of the virus. Until then, everyone is advised to remain calm, not panic and continue to receive preventive or supportive medical care as available. We would also advise you to stay in touch with your local medical authorities and use best measures to stay safe. ...

ADDICTED TO FOOD ITS TIME TO BREAK YOUR HABIT
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Food addiction is a disease, which is very much similar to drug or alcohol addiction. Food addiction manifests itself in the uncontrollable cravings that one has for excessive eating and typically involves eating salty, sugary or carbohydrate-rich foods for satisfaction. This addiction basically denotes the unhealthy relationship of a person with food. It is something that a person must dedicate himself to overcome if they want to live a long and healthy life. A food addict can be easily recognized as when given the chance to eat something they have an urge for, they find it very difficult to say no!If you also feel addicted to food and are looking out for some effective solutions, here are some ways, which can really prove useful –1. Keep your hunger in checkKeep a food diary to monitor the time of day and duration of your eating. A clear check on eating habits will help in inducing portion control, resistance for favorite snacks, desserts, red meat, & substituting unhealthy food with healthier options!2. Don’t confuse thirst with hungerMany of the times, we tend to confuse our thirst with a desire to eat something. To keep such situations at bay ensure the intake of at least 8 glasses of water in a day. Plenty of water throughout the day to satisfy your hydration needs. Don’t use high-calorie sodas and high sugar fruit juices to quench your thirst.3. Working out is the keyRegular exercising helps in changing the typical way in which, your body functions. It helps in making up for some of the physiological imbalances which, might be the reason for triggering the food cravings. Also, when you tend to exercise regularly you become more conscious of what and when you are eating.4. Too much dependance on SweetsAvoiding the intake of sugar is the key to get over food addictions. Take gradual steps to remove it from your diets by targeting sauces, dressings, breads, crackers, cookies, cakes, candy and other “non-sweet” foods that contain hidden sweeteners. Eventually, your taste buds will become less responsive for sugary items thus, lowering their intake.5. Avoid the scene of crimeAvoid going to places, which serve the food options that are your weakness. Switch your regular routine and try to adopt some variations to make this work in an effective manner. For example, if pizza is what makes you crave avoid going to restaurants serving Italian cuisine. This trick will help you keep you food cravings at bay!6 Social SupportIn order to effectively work on stopping the food cravings resort to your social support network including family, friends & colleagues who will help you with controlling food cravings. Don’t hesitate to share your goals with them & request their support in your efforts!An unhealthy relationship with food can cause many problems. People can run into many physical, mental, and emotional imbalances if they are not taking steps to curb this addiction at the right time. Integrate these helpful methods in your daily lives to keep this addiction and its related problems away!...

HOW MANY CALORIES SHOULD YOU EAT TO LOSE WEIGHT
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Calories are a measure of energy. The amount of calories required by a person every day depends on his or her fitness or weight loss goals, gender, age, current weight and current level of activity.It is advisable to use a calorie counter for a few days to get an idea of how much you are eating right now; you may be amazed by the results!There isn’t a specific amount of calories every person should eat for the rest of their lives or for a period of time to lose weight, gain weight or simply maintain weight. Your caloric needs are going to be different from mine or your friends’. Using an app such as MyFitnessPal is one of the most effective ways of counting your calories. Apps like these calculate your daily caloric needs so that you have a goal to reach every day.For example, if you’re a woman over 20 and have a sedentary lifestyle, you may need around 1600 to 1800 calories if you want to maintain your weight and 1000 to 1200 calories if your goal is to lose weight. For men, its 2000 to 2200 to maintain weight and 1800 to 2000 to lose weight if you have sedentary lifestyle. Note that your daily caloric environment will be higher if you have an active lifestyle.Don’t starve yourselfA lot of people begin to starve themselves when they go on strict diets, especially if it involves calorie counting. This may lead to psychological disorders such as bulimia.Never worship calorie counting and use it as a rough guide. Most people like to start their weight loss journey by counting the calories they consume so that they have a rough idea of how to control their portions.Therefore, never fall into the notion that you’ll have to count your calories all your life. I know how boring and tedious it can be!Just cutting calories without considering what you put inside your stomachs is not a smart way of losing weight. It may work for some people, but most people begin to feel hungry and end up giving up on their diet.Don’t go on a “diet”, make a lifestyle change. Permanent changes that are healthy and enjoyable will help you sustain your current diet better than going on a dodgy celebrity endorsed diet.Eat more protein and drink more waterAdding more protein into your diet will leave less room for carby and fatty food items. Protein elevates your metabolic rate and reduces your appetite because it digests slowly in your stomach. Moreover, unlike carbohydrates it doesn’t lead to major insulin spikes and doesn’t cause any cravings either.Additionally, you should drink more water. Did you know that drinking 2 liters of water per day will help you burn about 96 calories every day? Avoid nasty liquid calories such as soft drinks and packaged fruit juices as they are packed with sugar and calories and have zero nutritional value with their artificial flavouring, artificial colouring and preservatives.Drinking tea and coffee without sugar will also help you lose weight as both drinks consist of almost zero calories and they boost metabolism.And finally exerciseWe mentioned earlier that causing a calorie-deficit in your diet will lead to starvation. Along with adding more protein to your diet, try exercising more and lifting weights. This will amplify your weight loss efforts and boost your metabolism. Eating less and not exercising will only do the opposite and make you feel weak and tired.a...

IS ALCOHOL MAKING ME FAT
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Excessive drinking isn’t good for you, this is no secret, but recent studies reveal that it may be worse than we originally thought it was – which is why most of us go crazy on the weekends.How alcohol affects your body?When you consume alcohol, it enters your stomach and about 25 percent of it is absorbed into your bloodstream immediately. The remainder of the alcohol continues down your digestive tract and is absorbed into the bloodstream via the small intestine.Once the alcohol reaches your bloodstream, it enters the liver where it is broken down.Alcohol is a stimulant, therefore, you feel relaxed after having your first drink. As you increase your alcohol intake, its effects amplify and you become “drunk.”How it causes weight gain?Alcohol has zero nutritional value and it is rich in calories, so there’s no doubt that it is going to cause weight gain.1. Alcohol is burnt first in your system for fuel. This means that the rest of the calories in your body are not used and will thus, be stored as fat2. Alcohol stimulates the production of insulin. Insulin is a hormone that stimulates fat storage3. Alcohol dehydrates you, which usually induces the drinker to drink more because he is thirsty. Furthermore, it causes the body to remove exceedingly high amounts of fluid which can be bad for the body4. Alcohol comprises of liquid calories. Liquid calories are easy to consume so a drinker may consume more alcohol than he intended to without even realizing itHow to drink smart?Alcohol, if consumed in moderation, can relax you and make you feel good. This helps in eliminating stress caused by huge workloads, a nagging partner, a failing relationship etc. Stress is a major factor that is directly linked to weight gain and a myriad of health issues. Therefore, if having a glass of wine helps you unwind, then the positive effects of alcohol outweighs its negatives effects – in such a situation.However, never use alcohol to run away from your problems. If you use alcohol to remedy your misery, you may want to consider seeking professional help and reducing alcohol intake.Furthermore, red wine is packed with antioxidants so it’s best to stick to this alcoholic beverage. Note that only one glass of wine is recommended*If you’re the type of person who intends to drink one or two and ends up drinking six, reevaluate your goals and try to abstain from alcohol altogether.*If your goal is to lose weight and gain muscle fast, avoid alcohol as much as possible because it is devoid of nutrients and packed with calories. If you need to lose weight because of a wedding or a competition, it’s best to eliminate it from your diet completely. Alcohol can mess with your sleep patterns and cause hormonal imbalances which can hinder you from reaching your goals on time.*If your goal is to simply feel better and create a healthier lifestyle, ease into drinking less. Start by having a glass of red wine or beer after work (if you drink every day) and couple this with this healthy eating and regular exercising. If this allows your body to progress in the right direction, continue with the routine. If it doesn’t, reduce alcohol consumption even further to one or two glasses of wine per week....

HOW TO AVOID WEIGHT GAIN IN LONG FLIGHTS
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It’s that time of the year again. School’s out or nearly out and for many of us that means jetting off to exotic climes and scenic destinations. When you’re planning a vacation, you probably start by figuring out where you’re going to go, how you’re going to get there, where you’re going to stay, and what you’ll want to do once you get there. But there is something else also you might have to plan to make your travel a happy one – weight gain. If you want to avoid returning from your holiday with loads of dreaded excess baggage that might creep around your middle or derriere, you’ll need to eat and drink reasonably, and that begins from the moment you step on the plane!Here are some useful to do and to avoid tips, which might prove really helpful to take off those calories:WHAT TO DO – TIPS1. Plan aheadPlanning in advance will help you keep off the immediate meal decisions. Have a thorough check at the airport eateries in case you want to eat before you fly, else order a special nutritious meal in the plane that has more veggies and less fat & sugar.2. Eat veggies at every mealStart your meal with an olive oil & lemon juice dressed salad. Crowd your plate with extra veggies and eat them before you start eating anything else. By doing this, you’ll eat low-calorie, nutritious foods, curb your appetite and be less likely to overeat on starches and animal proteins.3. Stay hydratedNo matter where you are, drinking lots of water will keep your body working properly. Everyone knows airplane air is dry. Drinking a liter or two of water before your flight will not only keep you hydrated but will curb your appetite too. Often the body confuses thirst for hunger, leading you to eat unnecessary calories, which will also be avoided with sufficient water intake.4. Safe snacksNo matter what your travel mode is, easy-to-pack foods like protein bars, almonds, seaweed snacks, lentil chips, fruit, string cheese and individual packs of baby carrots always come to your savior. Along with this, in the flight, ask for nuts or fruit instead of pretzels and chips. And choose 1 percent milk as your beverage of choice (other than water). Its perfect combination of protein (8 g), carbohydrates (11 g), and fat (2 g) will fill you up and keep you that way better than nearly any other snack.Other good foods to pack are dates, dried mango, crackers, cherries, carrot, celery sticks, smoked salmon, homemade popcorn, and bean salad.5. Keep movingWhen flights are delayed, use the time to walk around in the terminal rather than letting the restaurants and watering holes beckon. At some large airports, you can easily log a mile or more by walking back and forth along the concourses. Even in the flight, rather than being stuck to your seat just keep strolling a little every two hours for better functioning of your digestive system. It doesn’t matter what you do, just keep moving.WHAT TO AVOID – TIPS1.Avoid zoning out with menusDon’t glaze your eyes over the menu. A double chocolate cheesecake has the same amount of calories when at home and when traveling. It’s time to grip your temptations and apply the same healthy rules you follow at home. Look out for some healthy and simple dishes, prefer green salads!2. Avoid aerated drinks and alcoholsWatch out for empty liquid calories. Avoid chugging sodas, cocktails, and alcoholic drinks else you’ll rack up a bundle of calories. Stick to water, iced tea or lightly sweetened sports beverages instead.3. Miss the complementaryGive the complimentary snacks served with drinks a miss. It’s tempting to overeat starchy bagels, cereal, and waffles and it’s far more easy to eat more than you should, especially when you’re not paying for it. Avoid it, instead be on the lookout for fresh fruit, and maybe some protein in the form of hard-boiled eggs or yogurt.4. Avoid eating large portionsA Small portion is a key to keep your weight loss regime on the right track. If you really want to have a to-die-for dish or dessert that’s packed with calories, share it. Don’t deprive yourself, rather have a few bites, relish it and appreciate it.5.Ignore the sidesIt’s all the extras/side dishes that have the potential to pile on the unnecessary pounds/calories like the mayo dressing of your salad, the cheese and biscuits, the butter with the roll, and the after-dinner chocolate. Avoid them as much as you can.Keep these tips in mind next time you travel to keep loads of excess weight baggage at bay. Bon Voyage!...

A HEALTHY EATING SCHEDULE BOOSTS WEIGHT LOSS
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One of the major problems that are faced by weight watchers is to stick to a healthy eating plan and stay within their calorie target limits. Sometimes they tend to go beyond the total calorie limit and sometimes the intake is very less, both of these actions lead to unnecessarily delay in the weight loss process. The main aim of the healthy eating plan is to put forward the daily food intake items with optimal number of calories, which will ultimately, contribute in boosting the weight loss process.The total calorie consumption in a day should be divided effectively so that you remain satisfied and have enough to eat thorough out the day. If you eat too many calories in the early part of the day, you’ll be hungry for the rest of the day. Also, if you save all your calories for the later part of the day, you may anyway sabotage your weight loss program. The main benefits of adopting a healthy eating plan is that it keeps surprises at bay. You have a pre-defined plan about what to eat at what time, which makes sticking to healthy eating patterns easy and simplified.The main elements that you need to think about while making a healthy eating plan are:a) How many calories?The main element of creating a healthy plan is the number of calories you need to consume in a day. While creating a healthy schedule make, sure you space out the calories intake, so you don’t feel too hungry at any time. For example, if you plan to consume 18ookcal in a day. Let’s consider that the plan includes 3 meals and 2 snacks. Proportionately each meal should contain 500 calories and each snack should contain 150 calories. Make sure that you pile up your plate with healthy and nutritious meals and snacks and keep fatty & sugary junk foods at bay!b) What’s your lifestyle pattern?Another major aspect to consider is which times during the day is convenient for you to have a meal or snack. For example, if you have a traditional first shift functioning schedule, you would find it easy to eat your meals in the morning followed by regular food intake patterns. But if your work schedule is different, you would require far more adjustments. It would be more convenient for you to split the calories into 5 small meals rather than same large meal pattern followed in the traditional rule of thumb!c) How often should you eat?It is very important that you eat every 3-4 hours to keep weight loss functioning active in your body. Avoid longer gaps in meals and snacks as they could cause your blood sugar levels to drop too low, resulting in energy slumps, mood swings, and the temptation to overeat. Having moderate calories throughout the day keeps your energy levels stable and stomach happy. Not only this, it also boosts your metabolism and helps you burn more calories.So, even if you haven’t stuck to a healthy eating schedule in the past, these benefits are enough motivating for you to do it now. You will immediately notice these changes – higher energy levels, better mental clarity and emotional resilience. This is because you are providing your body with the fuel it requires so that it can perform its functions properly....

COULD WHITE BE MAKING YOU FAT
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White foods are foods that have been refined and processed, such as white flour, bread, buns, pasta, rice, cereal, sugar, salt, high-fructose corn syrup, crackers, cookies, pies etc.Many natural and unprocessed foods are white in color too, such as onions, white beans, potatoes, and cauliflower but these don’t fall under white foods because they are healthy. The difference between unhealthy and healthy white foods depends on how they are processed and their fiber content. Healthier alternatives to white foods such as brown rice instead of white rice are rich in fiber and antioxidants.Bad carbs make you fatUnhealthy white carbs or refined carbs/sugars are easily digested and absorbed by the bloodstream. This raises blood glucose levels and stimulates the production of insulin. Insulin is a hormone that converts the excess sugar to stored fat in the body and uses glucose as a prime source of energy. Furthermore, increased blood sugar and insulin levels trigger hunger and cravings within one to hours of eating. This increases your likelihood of overeating and consuming unhealthy food.In addition, refined carb products have very little nutritional value, some good examples include sweetened drinks such as candies, sodas, and packaged fruit juices.However, good carbs or complex carbohydrates are more filling and nutritionally rich as they are high in fiber and minerals and vitamins. Weight loss becomes much easier when you choose foods that are more filling as this prevents cravings and overeating.Eliminate sugarSugar is difficult to give up on. According to the American Heart Association, Americans consume an equivalent of 22 teaspoons of sugar from their food and drinks, particularly soda and candy. These calories can add up with time and cause major weight gain.Whether you have a sugary fruit juice or a piece of candy, most sugary foods provide little to no nutritional value to consumers. Moreover, consuming sugary food leads to more sweet cravings. Frequent consumption of sugar is linked to diabetes, obesity and heart disease in adults.How to consume less white carbsMake sure you always read the food labels on products before purchasing them. Check their sugar content and see if they are safe to consume if you’re trying to lose weight. Ideally, you should avoid foods containing any sugar or high-fructose corn syrup.When you’re purchasing bread, pasta and cereals always opt for products that are whole grain and not made with white flour. Whole grain products often consist of higher levels of fiber, which are more filling and prevent you from overeating.If you enjoy sugar and sweets, try natural sweeteners such as banana, mango and other fruits and honey. Go for raw cacao, unsweetened cocoa or dark chocolate without added sugar if you love chocolates – these can be added to yogurt and fruit too to make a healthy and nutritious dessert.Salt counts tooSalt, although not a white carb, is still white and most of us need to reduce it in our diet. Although you need a small amount of salt in your diet because it is an important electrolyte, many people are likely to consume too much of it.In addition, the saltiest foods are often the unhealthiest, such as fast food, cookies, chips, processed soups, canned products etc. Salted nuts and other products containing added salt should be avoided as much as possible too.Try your best to make your meals at home – this will give you control over the ingredients you add, including salt. Salt intake is not directly linked to fat storage in the body, however. What it does do is that it shows a higher number on the scale due to water retention. Salt holds water back in your body, which should otherwise be flushed out. Reduce salt intake and consumption of unhealthy white carbs for optimum weight loss....

DOES EATING EVERY 2 HOURS HELP WEIGHT LOSS
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Eating frequently can help control your appetite, enhance your concentration and maintain or increase muscle mass. In order to lose weight, consider having your meals every two to three hours a day to keep your body’s energy level stable throughout the day.Here’s more on eating frequently:Controlled blood sugar levelsWhen your blood sugar levels go down, cortisol levels increase resulting in cravings for sugar, increased belly fat, decreased immunity and hormonal imbalances. This can affect how you feel about food and cause feeling of pleasure and sleepiness following a large meal. Although food should be enjoyed, you begin to reach for food more even when you’re not hungry, especially while you’re stressed or bored.Increased metabolismEating three or two large meals a day can slow down your metabolism and push the body to store energy instead of using it to fuel your bodily functions. Eating frequently convinces the body that it has to burn food to use it as energy.Maintain muscle massYour body is constantly trying to avoid burning its stored fat to fuel. Not eating frequently makes it even easier for the body to do so as it begins to use muscle protein for fuel. Eating often will help prevent it from consuming muscle protein.How you should eat often:Have breakfast every dayYour body is deprived of food while you sleep so it is extremely important that you have breakfast. Your body is in a fasted state and is low in energy, therefore, it will use its glycogen and muscle protein for energy, not fat. Having breakfast will not only prevent the body from using muscle protein, but it will give you a kick start to your day and help you avoid unhealthy foods.Plan your mealsHaving a meal every 2 to 3 hours of the day can sound a little tough but it can be made easy with a little planning. Plan your meals a week ahead on a Saturday and go grocery shopping on Sunday.Having frequent meals does not mean you have 4-6 large meals per day. It means you divide the three meals you normally have to 6. For example, you can have oatmeal for breakfast, an apple, green smoothie or carrots for snack, a salad or sandwich for lunch, nuts or a shake for your next snack, dinner and then a final snack meal which can be a small snack or smoothie.Some good examples of snacks include:1. Greek yogurtGreek yogurt is packed with protein and contains probiotics which keep your gut healthy. Add in some berries or a sliced mango to add flavor.2. WalnutsWalnuts are rich in omega 3 fatty acids and antioxidants which aid in weight loss and improve mood. You can keep a bag of walnuts with you in your bag, purse or office drawer and have a handful when you’re hungry. Walnuts can be paired with a small piece of low-fat cheese or if you want more, you can add them to your breakfast oatmeal or lunch salad.3. ApplesApples consist of pectin and fiber which control your appetite. You can have it with your favorite nut butter to add in that omega 3 kick.4. TeaTea, such as green tea, black tea or white tea is a great snack and it can aid in weight loss too. Tea is rich in antioxidants and according to many studies tea, particularly green and white tea can improve metabolism and help burn more fat....

How To Avoid Holidays Weight Gain
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Holiday season, is all about celebrating, having fun, and indulging in decadent desserts, rich beverages, and holiday festivities that disrupt your normal eating routine. Most people don’t want to give up any holiday foods, fun, and activities. Indulgence is good…..to a point. Go ahead and enjoy, but make a commitment to celebrate in moderation. This commitment is not a form of self-denial; rather, it is a way to enjoy the indulgences of the season without harming your health. Let’s ponder over some smart tricks and strategies which, highlight a simple way to navigate through holiday party food spreads, hectic schedules, and sidelined gym routines without spoiling the fun and enjoyment:-1. Prefer proteinsProteins play an important role in maintaining and losing weight as they have high satiety value. Some of the tasty high protein food items include turkey, chicken, quinoa, lentils, beans!2. Use smaller platesIt has been observed over years that plate size has a significant role to play in weight loss. Using smaller plates tends to make you full with less quantity of food. So whenever dining out at a restaurant choose the smaller salad plate (7-10 inches) instead of a tray-like one (12 inches or more).3. Fix it with fiberFiber is a good natural way to reduce body fat. It does not metabolize fat quicker or more efficiently, but it will help you regulate your weight by decreasing the intake of calories. Snacking on vegetables and high-fiber items like legumes can help keep you fuller, longer & curb cravings for fatty/junk foods.4. Have sweet moments without sugarAdded sugar is very harmful as it increases the risks of cardiovascular diseases and obesity. Stick to natural sugar (fruits, veggies, and whole grains) for taste and reduce the intake of holiday cookies, cakes, and pies only for the time when you’re truly craving!5. Carbs- Take it easyWhite is really making you fat – white bread, pastries, and refined sugars (aerated drinks/sodas). The science behind this is that the body breaks down simple carbs quickly, which creates a spike in blood sugar that leaves us feeling hungrier, faster. Prefer the intake of whole grains instead (brown rice, quinoa, couscous, orzo etc.), which have the potential to reduce the dangerous excess abdominal fat.6. Beware of boozeAlcohol has a high level of empty calories. Not only this too much drinking makes you lose the inhibitions around food which results in irresponsible eating. To keep your weight loss regime under control limit your booze intake. Cheers!7. Have waterDrinking water helps you feel full, and, as a result, you tend to consume fewer calories. Pregaming a meal with a glass of water helps in cutting calories. Also, having a good amount of water throughout the day keeps you away from unhealthy munching.8. Turn down the temptationsFood and eyes have a direct relationship – the more we see food, the higher we tend to consume. So face away from the dessert spread to avoid its intake. Also, excessive curbing can backfire sometimes, but moderation can help you get through it effectively. Smartly cave into your cravings to avoid unnecessary bingeing later.9. Chew gumPopping a piece of sugar-free gum won’t necessarily curb your appetite, but would distract you from unknown popping of food in your mouth as it is already busy. While the long-term effects of gum chewing on weight loss are minimal, studies show it can lower cravings for sweet and salty snacks, and decrease hunger between meals.10. Make room for healthy fatsNot only do you need fat in your diet to provide energy and absorb the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K, but it also helps you feel full. Get healthy monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats from avocado, nuts, olive oil, applesauce, banana, flax, etc.Gaining weight is easy and losing it is a time taking process. To make your holidays happy and healthy don’t forget to follow these simple tips. Happy traveling!...

HOW EXCESS WEIGHT AFFECTS YOUR HEALTH
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Over half of the world’s population is suffering from the serious problem of obesity, which is the leading cause of many life-threatening diseases. As per the classification from WHO, obesity is mainly of 3 types –a. Severe obesity – BMI ≥ 35 or 40 kg/m2b. Morbid obesity – A BMI of ≥ 35 kg/m2 and experiencing obesity-related health conditions or ≥40–44.9 kg/m2c. Super obesity – A BMI of ≥ 45 or 50 kg/m2If you are overweight/obese, the probabilities of developing heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure increase significantly. Let’s explore the top 10 obesity-related diseases: –1. Heart diseasesAmerican Heart Association has highlighted that obesity is a major risk factor for developing coronary heart disease, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke. Overweight people are at a higher risk of suffering a heart attack before the age of 45. Obese adolescents have a greater chance of having a heart attack before the age of 35 than non-obese adolescents.2. High cholesterol levelsCholesterol is transported through your blood in two ways: the low-density lipoprotein (LDL), which transports cholesterol to the cells that need it, and the high-density lipoprotein (HDL), which is the healthy cholesterol that reduces your risk for heart attack. When you are overweight the levels of LDL increases in your blood, which ultimately results in raising the risks of having heart diseases by 20%.3. DiabetesThe World Health Organization (WHO) has indicated that more than 90% of diabetes patients worldwide have type 2 –diabetes. Obesity is the most significant factor responsible for type 2 – diabetes as it leads to development of insulin resistance in the body. Being overweight contributes to the development of diabetes by making cells more resistant to the effects of insulin.4. CancerAmerican Heart Association has highlighted in one of the studies that being overweight increases your chances for developing cancer by 50%. Women have a higher risk of developing cancer if they are more than 20 pounds overweight. Regular exercise and a weight loss can significantly decrease this risk.5. GallstonesGallstones are caused when the liver releases excessive amounts of bile, which is stored in the gallbladder. Being severely overweight increases the risk of developing gallstones.6, Skin problemsObese individuals may have skin that folds over on itself. These creased areas can become irritated from the rubbing and sweating, which can lead to skin infections and serious skin problems as well.7. InfertilityOur bodies need to be at an appropriate weight to produce the right amount of hormones and regulate ovulation and menstruation. Being overweight for females can result in ovarian failure. Also, overweight men have a greater chance of developing motility and a low sperm count.8. UlcersGastric ulcers occur when there is an imbalance between the amount of hydrochloric acid that is secreted and the enzyme pepsin. National Institutes of Health (NIH) conducted a study and highlighted a result that obesity can be a contributing factor to the development of gastric ulcers. Overweight men are at a greater risk of developing gastric ulcers than women.9. High Blood PressureBlood pressure tends to increase with weight gain and age. High blood pressure is the primary cause of death among Americans older than 25 years. Studies have shown that obese patients displayed an increase in blood volume and arterial resistance, which is a responsible for diseases high blood pressure levels & related diseases.10. Back painObesity is one the contributing factors of back and joint pain as the body has to bear the burden of excess weight. Excessive weight can cause injury to the most vulnerable parts of the spine (spinal injury or structural damage increase), which carries the whole body weight. Along with this, excessive weight increases the risk of osteoporosis, lower back pain, arthritis, and osteoarthritis.So, it is clear that obesity and lack of weight loss referrals are considered such serious issues, as there is a direct correlation between obesity and disease risk. Now, is the time to reduce the probability of these diseases in your life by simply shedding off those extra pounds....

WEIGHT LOSS AND ACID REFLUX
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We all know that eating certain foods can trigger an uncomfortable period of acid reflux however; experts have now found that excess weight, even if it’s a relatively small amount, can result in or worsen GERD symptoms. A 2006 study in the New England Journal of Medicine showed that even small changes in weight in a person with a normal BMI can elevate the severity of GERD or acid reflux.This study examined the correlation between BMI and the presence of symptoms of GERD. Participants of the study who had a BMI of 25 to 30 were classified as overweight and results showed that these people were twice as likely to experience acid reflux as a person with a normal BMI. Participants who were obese with a BMI of above 30, were thrice as likely of developing GERD symptoms such as chest pain, discomfort, heart burn and difficulty swallowing. However, even people with normal body weight or a BMI of 21 to 25 were susceptible to GERD due to small fluctuations in their weight.Abdominal fatApart from the aesthetics, one clear-cut benefit of losing belly fat is reducing your risk of GERD. Studies show that the excess weight in the midsection may be the cause of heartburn in most patients. This is because the excess fat in the abdominal region compresses the stomach and increases its internal pressure causing acid reflux. In addition, most people who are also overweight tend to have a high-fat diet which can worsen or trigger heartburn.How to manage acid refluxJust losing 10% of your body weight if you’re overweight can significantly improve GERD symptoms and your overall risk of many chronic illnesses. If you’re at your ideal weight, it is not advisable to lose weight to treat heartburn. In this case, seeking help from a doctor or changing your diet to make it more GERD-friendly by minimizing fat and oil and dairy may help. However, if you have a few extra pounds to lose, try losing them in a healthy and effective manner. Losing weight will not only treat your heartburn, it will also lower your risk of heart disease, cancer and diabetes.Follow these weight loss tips to improve GERD symptoms:1. Lower your fat intakeEliminate fried food and other high-fat meals and see if this makes a difference. Reducing the fat in your diet will increase the pressure in your lower esophageal sphincter and help the stomach empty faster, thus reducing your chances of acid reflux.2. Have small frequent mealsHaving a large meal may put excess pressure in your stomach and cause acid reflux. Try having 4-6 small meals a day.3. Avoid heavy meals in the eveningHaving a heavy meal in the evening or night is not only linked to weight gain but will increase your risk of acid reflux too. Have your last meal 3 to 4 hours before bedtime to keep GERD symptoms at bay....

WHY SODA DRINKS ARE DANGEROUS TO YOUR HEALTH
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Do you drink soda drinks? How often do you drink it? An average American drinks around 56 gallons of soda in a year. The innocent can of a soda drink contains 10 tsp of sugar and 160 empty calories. Soft drinks are a multi-billion dollar product in United States and with the increasing demand of the soda drinks it becomes really important to evaluate how they can influence a person’s health. With a little research we found that apart from hidden sugar and unnecessary calories there are some more serious reasons why you should quit drinking Coca-Cola and soda drinks now:1) It’s not surprising that soda drinks are rich in sugar which results in weight gain, but studies have shown that people who drank soda drinks had a 70% increase in their waist circumference as compared to those who didn’t drink it! Along with this, people who drank more than two sodas per day saw a 500% waist expansion! Another study which was conducted on mice highlighted that it was the presence of aspartame, which resulted in raising the blood glucose levels ultimately resulting in weight gain!2) Aerated drinks contain high levels of phosphoric acid which disturbs the body’s ability to absorb calcium resulting in osteoporosis, cavities and bone softening. Not only this, phosphoric acid also leads to a poor digestion process and blocks the nutrient absorption.3) All colas contain phosphates, or phosphoric acid, that gives aerated drinks their tangy flavor and improves their shelf life. Phosphoric acid is responsible for heart and kidney problems, muscle loss, osteoporosis, and also triggers aging. FASEB journal published a study in a 2010 issue which stated that the excessive phosphate levels found in sodas caused lab rats to die five weeks earlier than the rats whose diets had more normal phosphate levels.4) Nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest petitioned the Food and Drug Administration to ban the use of artificial caramel color in making of Coke, Pepsi, and other colas brown. The main reason to do so is the presence of 2-methylimidazole and 4-methylimidazole, which has been responsible to cause cancer in animals. According to California’s Strict Proposition just 16 micrograms per person per day of 4-methylimidazole is enough to pose a cancer threat, and most popular brown colas, contain 200 micrograms per 20-ounce bottle.5) The water used for the production of soda and aerated is simply a tap water, which is likely to contain chemicals like chlorine, fluoride and traces of heavy metals.6) It is found that most of the aerated drinks are high in caffeine content, which has been the main cause for many types of cancers, breast lumps, high blood pressure. etc. Along with this, the high sugar sodium and caffeine present in these drinks dehydrates the body and over a long period of time can cause chronic dehydration.7) The cans in which sodas are sold are lined with an epoxy resin called bisphenol A (BPA), which is known to interfere the normal functioning of hormones. This can result in everything from infertility to obesity and diabetes and some forms of reproductive cancers.8) One of the main ingredient used in the production of aerated drinks is derived from corn. 88% of the corn grown in U.S. is developed genetically to resist toxic pesticides or engineered to create pesticides within the plant itself. There are no studies and results which can prove or disprove the impact of these crops oh humans. Scientists have found that, in animals, GMOs (genetically modified crops) is responsible for digestive tract damage, accelerated aging, and even infertility. Apart from this a study in France, found that rats that were fed GMO corn for their entire two-year lifespan developed mammary tumors and died earlier than rats that ate non-GMO corn.9) Sodas and aerated drinks are also a major cause for dental problems. Regular intake of soda causes plaque to build up on the teeth, which can further lead to cavities and gum diseases.10) Soda drinks have no nutritional content at all. Not only that there are many dangerous and harmful effects of drinking soda, but there is not a single positive benefit to outweigh them. Soda is an unnatural substance that only harms the body....

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