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 email@example.com.
In this Section....
- February Recipes
- February's Exercise
- Daily Diet Tip
- High Fiber Foods
- Keeping Your (Motivational) Head Above Water
February Recipes - Click Here
This month is the month for lovers, and we have put together a Valentine's Day dinner tor two that is extra-special! We've included a sweet dessert and a champagne cocktail that you can use to toast each other! So find that special someone, light the candles, and be prepared to start cooking!!! (woohoo!!) Happy Valentine's Day to all!!!
We'd love to feature one of your favorite recipes in any one of our monthly issues, just send them on to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Hope to hear from all of you in the following months!
|New Feature! Each month we will feature a simple exercise you can do at home and without buying fancy expensive equipment. Click here to view this month's exercise.|
High Fiber Foods
Choosing foods that are high in fiber is a great way to maintain your weight and keep your digestive system healthy. High-fiber foods essentially include whole vegetables, whole fruits and whole-grain products. Dietary fiber helps to fill you up and keeps you satisfied longer after each meal, so losing weight is much easier - plus many high-fiber foods are also low in calories. Sounds great, right?
High-fiber foods have been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and to help to keep your digestive system healthy. Find out which foods are high-fiber foods.
Dietary fiber is only found in plants, and functions like a skeleton to help maintain their shape and structure. Humans eat plants but we cannot digest the fiber so it passes through the small intestine into the colon. The fiber helps to keep the colon healthy. Some disorders like diverticulitis, constipation and irregularity may be connected with not getting enough fiber in the diet.
Types of Dietary Fiber
Insoluble fiber is the type of dietary fiber found in high-fiber foods like whole grains, nuts, wheat bran and vegetables. Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water so it helps to move material through the colon faster by increasing the bulk of the stool. This can be very helpful to people who suffer from constipation or irregularity.
Diets high in insoluble fiber may also decrease the risk of diabetes.
Soluble fiber is also found in many high-fiber foods like oats, citrus fruits, apples, barley, psyllium, flax seeds and beans. Soluble fiber absorbs water, which helps to soften stools making them easier to eliminate from the body. Some soluble fibers, like beta glucan found in oats, bind to bile acids in the intestinal tract. Bile acids contain cholesterol and normally your body reabsorbs some of those bile acids, but when their bound to beta-glucan, they are eliminated through the stool. This reduces the amount of bile reabsorbed into your blood, and in turn helps to lower cholesterol levels. Research shows high-fiber diets with this type of soluble fiber has been shown to reduce cholesterol closer to healthy levels.
According to the Institute of Medicine: The recommended intake for total fiber for adults 50 years and younger is set at 38 grams for men and 25 grams for women, while for men and women over 50 it is 30 and 21 grams per day, respectively, due to decreased food consumption. People who currently have low-fiber diets may want to increase their daily intake of high-fiber foods slowly because some fiber may increase gas and bloating. The body adjusts the increased amount of fiber over time and the gas and bloating will decrease.
Here are some examples of delicious and healthy high-fiber foods from the USDA National Nutrient Database:
- one-half cup cooked navy beans - 9.5 g
- one-half cup baked beans, canned – 9 g
- one-half cup cooked lentils – 7.8 g
- one-half cup cooked black beans – 7.5 g
- one-half cup dates – 7.1 g
- one cup raisin bran cereal – 7 g
- one-half cup cooked kidney beans – 6.5 g
- one-half cup cooked lima beans – 6.7 g
- one-half cup canned tomato paste – 5.9 g
- one-half cup cooked garbanzo beans – 6.2 g
- one-half cup bean with ham soup – 5.6 g
- one-half cup frozen red raspberries – 5.5 g
- one medium bran muffin – 5 g
- one-half Asian pear – 5 g
- one-half cup cooked artichoke – 4.5 g
- one-half cup frozen peas, cooked – 4.4 g
- one cup oatmeal – 4 g
- one-half cup frozen mixed vegetables, cooked – 4 g
- one-half cup raw blackberries – 3.8 g
- one-half cup canned pumpkin – 3.5 g
- one-half cup cooked whole-wheat spaghetti – 3.4 g
- 24 almonds – 3.3 g
- one apple with skin – 3.3 g
- one-half cup cooked barley 3 g
- one medium orange 3 g
- one cup broccoli – 2.4 g
- one red sweet pepper – 2.4 g
- one nectarine – 2.3 g
- 28 peanuts – 2.3 g
- one slice whole grain bread – 2 g
- 15 walnut halves – 2 g
Fiber supplements are available and may be added to a low-fiber diet, but fiber supplements shouldn't replace high-fiber foods in your diet because high-fiber foods are usually high in vitamins and minerals as well.
Submitted by: Maria Albus
Keeping Your (Motivational) Head Above Water
Whether it’s the post-holiday blues or the seemingly long winter ahead, many people have been complaining about lack of motivation this time of year. Many of us say we’ve “lost our motivation,” and in fact we just don’t really feel like paying attention to food or exercise – it becomes too overwhelming. The trouble with this is that if we want to achieve any sense of balance, energy and enjoyment in our lives, we must pay attention to our quantities of food, getting regular exercise, trying to get adequate sleep, and learning to cope with the various stresses in our lives.
Thus, we must change our behaviours. I know we ask that everyone do a lot of thinking about why they choose to eat a certain way, or why it is that they choose not to exercise...but if you really want to regain ‘motivation,’ you must ACT; then you will FEEL, and then you will BELIEVE. I really enjoyed the following sentence I read in the book “It’s not what you’re eating; it’s what’s eating you:” the author stated, “You can think until you disappear into your navel, but you’ve got to act.” The bottom line is, you can’t think your way into good action, but you can act your way into good thinking.
Each Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday my alarm goes off at 4:50 am in order for me to get to swim practice. I do not wake up happy, motivated, and excited to go – I wake up miserable and tired! However, as my coach has told me, just ACT: “Put your feet on the floor, get dressed, and get to practice.” Once I have finished the workout at 6:30, I feel good. I feel like I accomplished something, and I feel like I’m determining my health. The reason I bring this up is because ‘motivation’ did not get me to the pool - it was the simple ACT of getting out of bed.
If you are off track with eating, don’t spend a lot of time asking “why.” Just make a menu and stick to it. Once you have done this for 3 or 4 days you will feel empowered, you will feel in control, and you will once again feel ‘motivated.’ ACT first, then FEEL.
Deep down, what holds all of us back in life is a feeling of inability to succeed. Especially when it comes to weight loss. Does the fact that you’ve tried 6 or 7 plans throughout your life “prove” that you are incapable? NO! What happened with all of those is that you focused simply on the food, not on yourself and the abilities you have. You ARE capable of being anything. Return to the goal you want to achieve (lose 2 or 3 sizes? Walk a 5 km road race?) and start to act on it. Affirm that you will stick to your menu tomorrow, and go for a walk and get to bed earlier and don’t worry about the long term. Most of us simply want to feel in control of food, and want to improve our physical health. It begins today. It begins with an ACT. Don’t wait for a magical feeling...that will come when you have done the action.
Make a menu plan and write down everything you eat. Make an exercise plan (10 minutes a day is a start), but stick to it. Make sure you are doing everything you can to get a good sleep. Work on today, and don’t worry about the next day until it has started.
You can do it. Just keep on trying. Don’t ever give up!
Written by: Dr Doug