HEALTH / FITNESS
Information about fitness, health, nutrition and weight loss
Do you know of a new diet or fitness routine that you'd like us to review? Or perhaps you want to write a review yourself and see it in print! Got a great recipe you want to share? Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In this Section....
- August Recipes
- August's Exercise
- Daily Diet Tip
- Healthy Eating and Travel
- Water - Nature’s weight loss prescription
August Recipes - Click Here
It's hot out there!!! And when all the heat's outside, you don't want to bring it inside at dinnertime! So, cool off and enjoy these recipes that take virtually no cooking at all. You don't have to order out to enjoy good food in the summer, and you can grab all the fruits and vegetables of the season while relaxing in the shade or inside with the air conditioning!! Have a great August, and stay cool!!!
We'd love to feature one of your favorite recipes in any one of our monthly issues, just send them on to us at email@example.com. Hope to hear from all of you in the following months!
August Exercises - Click HereEach month we will feature simple exercises you can do in the comfort of your own home and without buying fancy expensive equipment.
Healthy Eating and Travel
Will you be traveling yet this summer? When you're on the road, it may seem like healthy food is difficult to find and that you're doomed to eat junk food until you reach your destination. But that doesn't have to be the case; you can find healthy foods while you're traveling if you know where to look. Many convenience stores offer fresh fruit (you just need to search beyond the greasy chips and candy bars that are usually displayed prominently). You might want to pack a small cooler with fresh snacks and beverages that you have at home. This also saves you money since many things at the convenience stores are a little more expensive than what you already bought at the grocery store. Here are some more tips for healthy eating when you travel.
You may be eating breakfast at a restaurant, a hotel continental breakfast bar, or even the food aisle of a gas station. Avoid excess sugar. High carbohydrate meals may improve your mood for a short time, but lots of sugar can also make you sleepy. That's not good if you are the driver.
Healthy eating at a restaurant:
- Choose an omelet filled with vegetables and order a side of whole-wheat toast instead of a stack of pancakes and syrup. A bowl of oatmeal with fresh fruit is very filling and good for you.
- If you want something sweet, choose a bran muffin, which is a good source of fiber. Or opt for whole-grain toast with just a little jam or jelly.
At the hotel continental breakfast bar:
- Choose a whole grain cereal with low-fat milk.
- Fresh fruit gives you vitamins and fiber.
- Yogurt or hard-boiled eggs are good sources of protein.
- Avoid sugary muffins, sweet-rolls, and pre-sweetened cereal.
At the service station:
- Look for single-serving whole grain breakfast cereals and low-fat milk.
- Protein bars can make a good breakfast food substitute, but watch out for extra sugar and calories--read the labels.
- As a last resort, choose a hot breakfast sandwich or small breakfast burrito over donuts and sweet-rolls.
Fast food restaurants:
- Most breakfast choices have lots of calories and saturated fats, but breakfast burritos may have less than other selections.
- Fruit and yogurt parfaits will give you some calcium and protein without too much saturated fat.
- Drink low-fat milk or 100 percent juice instead of sodas and orange-flavored soft drinks.
SNACKS IN THE CAR
If you are the driver, you probably should not be snacking since eating can be a big distraction. Snacks to keep your passengers happy should be low in saturated fats, low in sugar and nutritious. Take a cooler with ice packs to keep your snacks and beverages cold. When you stop for gas and restroom breaks, find a local grocery store which will have a better selection than the gas station.
Eat healthy snacks in the car:
- Load up on fresh-cut vegetables and fruit. Bring along a small cooler with ice packs to keep your snacks fresh.
- Bring plenty of water. It will keep you hydrated and, if you spill it, won’t stain the upholstery like sodas.
- Individually wrapped portions of string cheese or vegetarian cheese alternatives can be kept in the cooler with the fruit and vegetables. They are a great source of calcium and protein.
- Bring baked whole grain crackers along on your trip. This is good for added fiber and nutrients.
- Don’t overindulge in greasy chips. There are baked varieties that have a lot less unhealthy fats. You need to watch how much you eat of those too, however, since they don’t offer much in the way of nutrition.
- You can also pack sandwiches made with whole grain bread and peanut butter or lean meats. Keep these in the cooler, too.
- Nuts such as almonds, cashews, and walnuts contain polyunsaturated fats and are easy to take on a trip in either individual bags or larger containers.
LUNCH AND DINNER
Lunch and dinner on the road usually means going to a restaurant. Don’t spend too much time at fast food restaurants; instead opt for full-service restaurants that offer more choices.
Healthy eating in restaurants:
- Order a soup or a salad to eat with your main course. Soups and salads are generally healthy and start to fill you up so that you eat less of the more calorie-dense main meal.
- Skip the entrée altogether. Soup and salad might be enough for a healthy meal.
- Split a meal with your dining partner. Most restaurants serve huge portions, so there is usually enough food to share. This saves calories and money. Besides, sharing eliminates the temptation to take leftovers back on the road, where they can't be properly stored.
- Select foods that are prepared with healthier, low-fat methods. Baked chicken is healthy, but fried chicken has too much fat.
- Eat the vegetables. Most entrées come with at least one vegetable. If not, be sure to order a vegetable side dish.
- Skip dessert, or choose some fruit. A full meal that ends with a sugary dessert may make you feel sleepy. That might be fine if you are passenger, but a bad idea if you are the driver.
At fast food restaurants:
- Find sandwich shops like Subway or Quiznos that let you select your sandwich ingredients. Choose whole grain breads, lean meats, and lots of vegetables.
- Many fast food restaurants offer salads, but you need to be careful when you select one. Some of those salads are very high in fat, especially taco salads or those topped with fried chicken strips.
- Don’t super-size your meal. It sounds like a great deal, but you will eat way too much calories, fat, and sodium. Order sandwiches made with grilled chicken rather than fried chicken.
AT THE HOTEL
If your trip requires a hotel stay, you might get a bit hungry after a long day of travel. If going to a restaurant is not an option, you should still find healthy foods.
Eating at the hotel:
- Find a local grocery store and buy healthy snack items such as fruit, nuts, or healthy choices from a salad bar or deli section. If your hotel has a microwave, you can find healthier frozen dinners or soup.
- If your only choice for a snack is the hotel vending machine, skip the candy and chips and look for nuts or microwave popcorn.
- Some restaurants will deliver food to your hotel room and may have some healthy menu items available. If you go for a pizza delivery, don’t order extra cheese or meats high in saturated fat. Choose lots of vegetable and mushrooms. Order a side salad too.
Follow these easy tips for better nutrition on the road, and have a safe and healthy road trip.
Submitted by: Maria Albus
Water - Nature’s weight loss prescription
We hear a lot about water and how important it is. However, while many of us know it’s important, we may not realize why it works the way it does and how much it can help us on our weight loss journey. Simply drinking extra water helps our body metabolize fat, it helps suppress our appetite, and helps us retain less fluid. It is possibly the single most important key for weight loss & weight maintenance long-term. Why?
Water naturally suppresses the appetite and helps the body metabolize stored fat. Studies have shown that decreasing water intake causes fat deposits to increase, while increasing water intake can actually reduce fat deposits. The kidneys can’t function properly without enough water – when they’re not working to capacity, some of their load is dumped on the liver. One of the liver’s primary functions is to metabolize stored fat into energy for the body. However, if the liver has to do some of the kidney’s work, it cannot operate efficiently; this results in less fat metabolism and more fat remaining stored in the body…therefore, weight loss stops.
Drinking enough water is the best treatment for fluid retention. When the body gets less water, it perceives this as a threat to survival and begins to hold on to every drop. Water is stored outside the cells, showing up as swollen ankles, feet, legs and hands. Diuretics offer a temporary solution at best. They force out stored water along with some essential nutrients. The body perceives a threat and replaces the lost water at the first opportunity. Thus, the edema, or bloating, quickly returns. The best way to overcome water retention is to give your body plenty of water. Then, the water is released naturally.
If you have a constant problem with water retention, excess salt may be to blame. Your body will tolerate sodium only so much. The more salt you eat, the more water your system retains to dilute it. But getting rid of unneeded salt is easy – just drink more water and eliminate sodium through the kidneys. A heavy person needs more water than a thin person, since larger people have larger metabolic loads. Water maintains proper muscle tone by giving muscles their natural ability to contract and prevents dehydration. It also helps to prevent the sagging skin that usually follows weight loss. Shrinking cells are buoyed by water, which pumps the skin and leaves it clear, healthy and resilient.
Water helps rid the body of waste. During weight loss, the body has a lot more waste to get rid of. All that metabolized fat is changed to water and must be “flushed out.” High-sugar drinks such as Gatorade tend to have the opposite affect, so make sure to read labels: avoid drinks that are more than 5 calories per serving. If you don’t enjoy drinking plain water, try diet pops, herbal teas or Crystal Light.
Despite knowing the benefits of water, many clients tend to find it “hard” to drink enough throughout the day. Try to figure out strategies that will trigger you to remember to drink your fluid – for example, keep a bright water bottle on your desk throughout the day; keep cold water bottles in your fridge at all times; set a timer to go off every hour in order to drink a glass of water. Eventually, once your body is used to being well hydrated, it will begin to ask you for the adequate amount of water through thirst. Your body will respond to any increase in fluid – start small and build yourself up to get at least 2 litres of water each day. Your weight loss journey will be that much more efficient!
You will feel more energetic, less hungry and less bloated! You deserve to feel good – you CAN do this!
Written by: Dr Doug