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Posts Tagged ‘maintaining a healthy lifestyle’

Overeating is easy to do, especially when you’re indulging in an unusually delicious meal. It’s also easy because there are many factors that cause us to overeat, including stress and noshing too fast—both of which we likely experience or do on an almost daily basis.

Fortunately, there are many tactics you can use to stop overeating once and for all, from slowing down to learning your body’s hunger cues. Use these tips to get your eating on track so you can feel fueled and satiated instead of full and frustrated.

Look Ahead

If you’re surrounded by unhealthy food all the time, it can be easy to eat all day long, whether or not you are hungry. Here’s one way to avoid this temptation: Think about how you’ll feel after you eat too much—like those times when you know you’re full, but there’s still food on your plate.

A similarly powerful tactic is thinking about how you’ll feel if you don’t eat the food. In almost every case you feel proud, happy and more satisfied than if you’d indulged unnecessarily.

Stop Once and For All: Before you grab the doughnut from your office kitchen—especially if you’ve already had a full breakfast—think to yourself: How will I feel when I finish this? Better yet: How will I feel if I walk away right now? Make this a habit, doing it every time you reach for an unnecessary snack; sometimes you’ll want to indulge and that’s okay. But you may find that you say “no” a lot more often than you say “yes.”

Eat Slower

It takes time for your stomach to tell your mind that you’re full because the process of feeling satiated takes time.

“Stretch receptors in the stomach are activated as it fills with food or water; these signal the brain directly through the vagus nerve that connects gut and brainstem. Hormonal signals are released as partially digested food enters the small intestine,” explains Ann MacDonald, a contributor to Harvard Health.

This process of sending signals from your gut to your brain can take anywhere from five to 20 minutes, which is why it’s important to eat more slowly. Eating too fast is a surefire way to overeat because we get this cue well after we’ve already eaten too much.

Stop Once and For All: The next time you eat, set a timer for 20 minutes and see how long it takes you to feel full, paying close attention to the cues your body is sending you. This will give you an approximation of how long it takes your body to feel full, which you can use to stop overeating in the future. Continue eating slowly until you notice that “I’m full” feeling. Note that those with type 2 diabetes may not get these same hunger cues, which makes this tactic less effective.

Eat Mindfully

In our on-the-go world, we’re often eating breakfast in the car, rushing through lunch at our desk, and half-heartedly noshing on dinner while watching our favorites shows. In all of these situations, your focus isn’t on the food you’re eating. It’s on driving, working or watching television, which can lead to overeating.

When you’re not paying attention to your body, it’s easy to miss the “I’m hungry” cue—just like when you eat too fast.

Stop Once and For All: Make a rule to eat at least one meal a day without doing anything else. Notice the difference in recognizing your satiation (feeling full) cues and how satisfied you are. Slowly increase this to two meals each day and eventually to all three.

Get Your Stress Under Control

It seems as though there’s always something stress us out, whether it’s a meeting at work or a family issue. This stress not only wreaks havoc on your body physically, causing everything from chronic high blood pressure and diarrhea, to headaches, chest pain and more, it’s causing you to overeat.

When stressed, your body releases cortisol, which also happens to increase appetite. Whether you’re hungry or not, your body is craving food, and to quell that “hunger” you eat. In many cases, you end up eating high-fat, sugary foods, making the overeating even worse.

Stop Once and For All: If you can’t reduce the amount of stress in your life right now, the next step is to recognize the potential for overeating and stop it before it starts. When stressed, rely on portioning your food, and when you go out to eat, get half of your meal put in a box for later before you even start eating. If you’re hungry for a snack, when you normally aren’t, check in with yourself: Is this stress or am I really hungry? Take Michael Pollan’s advice: If you’re not hungry enough to eat an apple, you’re probably not hungry.

Eat Before You’re Hungry

This idea may sound odd, but think about these two scenarios:

  • You eat dinner a little early, not because you’re very hungry but because you know you’re going out with friends and don’t want to order out—or you wait until you’re starving and eat post-drinks. You pour a glass of wine, browse the fridge, take your time making dinner, eat until you’re relatively full and then head out.
  • You decide not to eat before going out because you’re not hungry. You wait to eat dinner until 8pm, after you’ve gone out for drinks. Now you’re ravenous. You dive into your cabinets looking for whatever is easiest to make, and dig into the first thing you see. You eat so fast, you don’t realize how full you are—and now you’re stuffed and wishing you hadn’t eaten so much.

In the second scenario, you’re so hungry that you may be experiencing slight nausea or a headache from the hunger. But you may even eat unhealthier foods because you’ll likely eat one of the first things you find; forget about taking time to make a healthy dinner.

You may have similar experiences if you wait too long to have lunch at work, or eat breakfast late in the morning.

Stop Once and For All: Most people tend to eat around the same time every day. Set an alarm on your phone for an hour before you’d normally eat each meal so you remember to nosh earlier than usual. You’ll quickly find that you’re more likely to make rational healthy choices about what you’re eating and how much.

Give Yourself Time

How many times have you looked down at your plate, knowing that you’re full, and finished it anyway? When you’re done, you feel full and mad at yourself: Why did I eat the rest of that? I didn’t need it and now I feel like crap. It’s hard to resist food in the moment, thanks to our need for instant gratification. But giving yourself time to decide whether or not to finish the plate may be exactly what you need.

Stop Once and For All: The next time you’re in a moment where you would normally eat more, but know you shouldn’t, stop for 10 minutes. Give yourself time to decide if you want to eat the rest of the food on your plate. Almost every time, you’ll be happy to toss or save the rest of the food when your 10 minutes is up.

Pay Attention to All Your Hunger Cues

If you’re waiting for your stomach to growl, you may be setting yourself up to overeat, because we don’t all experience the same hunger cues. Sometimes it shows up as a headache or a bad mood that comes on suddenly. A nutritionist once said, “I always know I’m hungry when I’m happily working on something and all of a sudden I’m annoyed by what I’m doing.”

Knowing how hunger can show up in your body is key to recognizing it before it’s too late and you’re starving. Other potential hunger signals include:

  • Growling stomach
  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Low energy
  • Suddenly irritable (“hangry”)

Stop Once and For All: Make note of which hunger cues you experience each time you eat. Slowly you’ll discover what means “I’m hungry” for your body, allowing you to eat right away rather than waiting until later, when you’re ravenous, and therefore more likely to overeat.

Stop Overeating

It can be so hard to say no when food is right in front of you—and so easy to ignore that full feeling and eat until you’re so full you literally need to lay down because it hurts to sit or stand. Stop the cycle of overeating once and for all with these simple tips. Test each one to see which works best for you and then stick with it. Once it becomes a habit, you’re more likely to say no when you’re full and indulge when your body needs the fuel.

JESSICA THIEFELS

Jessica Thiefels has been writing for more than ten years and is the owner of Honest Body Fitness. As an ACE Certified Personal Trainer, she specializes in HIIT and circuit training, teaching small groups and working with clients one-on-one to reach their fitness and weight loss goals.

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Considering the amount of time we spend in the office, at home or in some coffee shop working feverishly over a computer for work, it is important that we do it as healthily as possible. The right temperature, proper lighting, calming colors and a little greenery will go a long way to keeping you healthy at work apparently.

A little can go a long way, and there’s perhaps no place where this is more true than in the office. Seemingly small adjustments to things such as the thermostat, lighting, and furniture can make a world of difference in creating a healthy and productive workplace that helps to retain employees. In fact, 1 in 3 workers say they accepted or left a job due to the condition of the building and/or amenities offered.

Click below for an enlarged image of the infographic and get some easy tips on keeping employees (and yourself) happy and healthy — without spending a lot of money!

Anatomy of a Healthy Workplace

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Benefits of Workplace Yoga ClassesIf you have heard of the movie, The Secret, you have heard of the Law of Attraction, as well. The Law of Attraction is not something that simple comes your way; you have to put a little effort into, as well.

The law of attraction states that every positive or negative event that happened with you was attracted by you. You may or may not buy that completely, however, I will say There are techniques that you can use in order to make the Law of Attraction work for you so that you can get what you want out of life.

Learn How to Meditate Using Creative Visualization

First and foremost, if you are interested in utilizing the Law of Attraction to its fullest potential, make sure that you begin each day with meditation. Meditation is important as it brings your focus toward what you desire and what you expect for that day. Meditation will increase brain power and have your mind at that relaxed state.

Creative Visualization is a powerful tool in creating the feelings behind the desire. It is not enough to just meditate on something you wish to attract into your life, visualizing brings it to life.

Creative Visualization takes it one step further by incorporating the feelings you are feeling as you see yourself.  It has been successfully used in the fields of health/wellness, fitness/exercise,  education, business, sports, and the arts for many years.

As you embrace the feelings of joy and happiness, you will see that more joy and happiness will enter your life. Creating visualization makes this happen by using your emotions as triggers.

Learn the Art of Being Grateful

Being grateful means truly understanding how much we already do have without asking for any more. When you are in a state of gratitude, so many more things to be grateful for come our way.

Take a look around you, there is so much to be grateful for, but you need to stand up and take notice. When you start to understand the simple blessing such as butterflies or flowers that envelope your life, you will feel more joy. Once you feel more joy, you will manifest more joyful events in your life.

Write Your Own Thoughts

If you really want to get the most out of the Law of Attraction, then you must consciously control your own thoughts on a daily basis. Sometimes you must control your thoughts on a moment-by-moment basis.

If you find yourself going into negative or self-sabotaging thoughts, you need to take responsibility in several ways.

  • Think positively
  • Concentrate on all that you are grateful for
  • Give yourself positive affirmations

Focus as often as you can on what you DO want rather than on what you don’t want. For example, if you want to be healthier, or lose 25 pounds, focus on the results and the solutions you would like to see.

Start creating your thoughts to show up as you wish.  Remember, this is the first day of the rest of your life.  Focus on joy, happiness and success.  Start creating your own victory!

© 2014 Tiffiny Marinelli, Energy in Motion

Further Reading

How to Eat Mindfully: Learn to Appreciate Every Bite

How to Find Your Exercise Motivation

 

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Working Out BWThe fresh start of a new year inspires lots of people to make New Year’s resolutions. Some of the most popular wellness resolutions include losing weight, exercising more, dieting, quitting smoking and stress reduction. Here are some tips to help you stick to those resolutions for 2014:

  1. Find Your Motivation. Make sure you REALLY want to make the change. What is your motivation for making a change? Don’t just do it because someone else told you or you need to fit into a new dress. Find your intrinsic motivation and you’ll be more likely to stick with it. Maybe you want to lower you cholesterol or reduce your risk for cardiovascular disease. Only when you feel this intrinsic motivation, this reason inside of you with the true desire to make a change, then your chances to succeed are high.
  2. Set Goals. You must break the old habits and replace them with new ones. Instead of a rush of activity in a one-time effort, consistency is the key to success. You need to do things regularly to achieve challenging goals. Make a realistic plan to reach your goals. Resolutions are really just annual goals. But like all goals, they should be SMART: 
    • Specific- your goals just identify exactly what you want to accomplish in as much specificity as you can muster.
    • Measurable- as the old adage says, “you can’t manage what you can’t measure.”
    • Actionable- every resolution should start with a verb (e.g., “quit,” “run,” “finish,” “eliminate,” etc.)
    • Realistic- you have to be careful here. A good resolution should stretch you, but you have to add a dose of common sense.
    • Time-bound- every resolution needs a date associated with it. When do you plan to deliver on that resolution? It could be by year-end (December 31) or it could be more near-term (March 31).
    • With SMART goals, you now have a visual reminder of your plans and a way to measure your progress.
  3. Make Your Plans Public. Tell your family and friends what you are committed to achieving. If you’re accountable to someone else for your work, you might be more likely to stick with it. Better yet, find someone with similar resolutions and buddy up. A co-worker or friend who is interested in going to the gym will often make it more likely that you both will go.
  4. Measure Your Progress. Measurement allows you to visualize your progress. It will give you something to look back at and be proud of. If you have a feeling of accomplishment towards your goal, you will most likely continue to strive. Even if each day’s effort doesn’t feel like much, it adds up to a big change.
  5. Reward Your Success. Rewards are a great motivation to keep going so celebrate the good stuff you’ve done. If you’ve reached a mini-goal or you’re stuck with your resolution for a month, treat yourself to something special. But, try not to use food as a reward.
  6. Don’t Give Up. Be ready for setbacks along the way. Nobody’s perfect. Forgive yourself and get back on track as soon as you can. Plan ahead for how you’ll deal with setbacks so you won’t be surprised if it happens.

Sticking with your New Year diet resolutions in 2014 can be easier when you have a plan. Use some of these tips and strategies to stick with your New Year diet resolutions in 2014 – and beyond!

Happy New Year! …Tiffiny

© 2013 Tiffiny Marinelli, Energy in Motion LLC

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How to Eat Mindfully: Learn to Appreciate Every Bite.Most of the excitement and the emphasis on the cholesterol health issue have centered on the concept of lowering cholesterol and the “bad” low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. There are many treatment plans, including drugs and nutrients established to lower LDL cholesterol.

In my opinion, what is of equal importance is looking at raising your “good” high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol as this has a very beneficial effect on your risk of heart disease and stroke.

HDL cholesterol molecules are manufactured in the liver. These specialized, small, and dense molecules transport various types of fats including triglycerides and cholesterol throughout the blood stream. In the case of HDL, this molecule transports fat deposits from the artery walls back to the liver where it is metabolized. Typically, HDL can be measured by standard blood tests—and higher amounts of this good cholesterol have been associated with many positive health outcomes.

Here are some important things you can do which increase the production of HDL good cholesterol in your body:

Avoid Trans Fat

Trans fat is produced when liquid vegetable oils are heated and infused with hydrogen. The resulting fat produced is solid at room temperature but dangerous to ingest. The consumption of trans fats increases LDL and decreases HDL cholesterol synthesis within the liver. To increase your good cholesterol, avoid fried foods and commercially prepared snack foods, baked goods, hard margarines, and frozen entrées, which will help decrease your exposure to this dangerous fat. Make sure you read labels carefully, to ensure there’s no trans fat in the product.

Avoid Sugar

Diets which contain high amounts of soda, candy, sweets, baked goods, fruit drinks, and deserts have a tendency to lower good cholesterol levels in the blood by a direct influence on liver synthesis. Sugar causes high amounts of insulin which is secreted over prolonged periods of time which can decrease the production of HDL cholesterol in the liver. Cutting down and trying to eliminate the bulk of the sugar intake in your diet can greatly influence the level of protective HDL you have in your blood stream.

Consume More Soluble Fiber

Soluble fiber found in oatmeal, bran, fruit and flax seed, can increase the synthesis of HDL cholesterol by increasing the concentration of lignans in your body. Lignans can exert a direct effect on the liver by increasing the formation of HDL cholesterol. Increasing the intake of soluble fiber also lowers blood sugar and insulin levels which directly affects the production of HDL in the liver. This is necessary to increase good cholesterol.

Consume healthy fats

Fats derived from salmon, herring, mackerel and sardines contain the omega-3 family of fatty acids known to reduce the incidence of heart disease and stroke. One of the ways these fats can achieve this is by increasing the production of HDL cholesterol in the liver. The fats of the omega-9 family commonly found in nuts, seeds, olive oil and avocados can also exert a beneficial effect upon HDL cholesterol synthesis in the liver. Increase good cholesterol by eating more healthy fats.

Drink Moderately

The moderate intake of red wine and alcohol has been shown to be associated with higher amounts of circulating HDL cholesterol. Moderate intake of these beverages implies one glass of wine per day for a female (or one ounce of spirits) and one to two glasses daily (two ounces of spirits) for a male.

Physical Activity

Becoming more physically active has a tremendous benefit to your health in so many ways. Physical activity can improve the synthesis of HDL cholesterol by improving insulin sensitivity and blood glucose utilization. It can also reduce inflammation and body weight while encouraging stored body fat oxidation for fuel. The net effect is, among other things, higher blood levels of HDL cholesterol. Exercising is a great way to increase good cholesterol.

Many people always focus on the ways you can lower your bad cholesterol, but it’s also important to increase good cholesterol to reap many health benefits.

by Dr. K.J. McLaughlin

http://www.foods4betterhealth.com/6-easy-ways-to-increase-your-good-cholesterol-3228

Source(s):
  • Schofield, J.D., et al., “High-density lipoprotein cholesterol raising: does it matter?” Curr Opin Cardiol. July 2013; 28(4): 464-74.
  • Hausenloy, D.J., et al., “Targeting residual cardiovascular risk: raising high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels,” Heart. June 2008; 94(6): 706-14.
  • Barter, P., “HDL-C: role as a risk modifier,” Atheroscler Suppl. November 2011; 12(3): 267-70.
  • Garneau, V., et al., “Association between plasma omega-3 fatty acids and cardiovascular disease risk factors,” Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. March 2013; 38(3): 243-8.

More Information

Top Heart Healthy Foods for Cardiovascular Health

Cholesterol and Saturated Fat: Understanding the Difference

How Exercise Makes the Heart Stronger

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10 Tips to Help You Eat HealthyDieting is a multi-billion dollar industry in the United States, but it doesn’t work for most people. In reality, the concept of a diet is fallible – usually people mean it as a restrictive term for what they will and won’t allow themselves to eat, usually for the purposes of weight loss. In fact, the term ‘diet’ simply refers to what you eat as a lifestyle, a means of giving your body the nutrients it needs.

But in society today, food all too often represents more than what you need to perform daily functions. It acts as a gathering purpose and plays an integral role in most family events. Even children’s birthday parties at school are centered around sharing cupcakes or cookies. Need to catch up with an old friend? Do lunch. Have a special anniversary to celebrate? A fancy dinner out. Everything from a housewarming barbecue to a wedding with hors d’oeuvres incorporates food. A promotion at work means a celebration dinner, holidays are even pictured with a family gathering around a large meal, slumber parties mean ordering pizza. The sad reality is that our society is focused around food and even worse, that food is usually very high in fat, calories, and sugar.

So what can you do about it? Everything! Think of everyone in your life who is trying to eat healthy, lose weight, or stay on a diet; most of your own friends and family want to eat better. Talk with each other and pledge to make healthy meals a priority, either when dining out or having people over. If you know there will be something happening where there will only be food you shouldn’t eat, find a way to bring your own or eat before so you won’t be too tempted. If you share your goals with your friends and family, they should be supportive of your endeavors and won’t be hurt if you bring something for yourself.

Talk with your children’s teachers about incorporating healthy foods into celebrations, especially those of your own child; strawberries and frozen grapes can make a delicious dessert, even for kids! At home, if you want the occasional special treat (or your kids beg you for it), offer it when there isn’t a special occasion so that you can break the cycle of thinking that you can’t have a great time and celebrate without food.

There are numerous ways you can reduce the amount of unhealthy and fattening foods in your life. Sharing and celebrating with family and friends is an important and healthy part of life; don’t make it bad for you by filling your body full of excess junk food. Your body will thank you for it and you’ll be able to concentrate more on what really matters: the people you’re with.

Copyright 2013 Tiffiny Twardowsky, Energy in Motion LLC

10 Tips to Help You Eat Healthy

How to Eat Mindfully: Learn to Appreciate Every Bite

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Living a healthy lifestyle has incredibly benefits: less disease, more energy, longer life, greater capability. Our American society focuses largely on weight loss and while obesity can be very damaging and unhealthy for the human body, the number on the scale is far less important than the actions of your life. Living a healthy life shifts the focus from weight to holistic health and there are three main focus areas: diet and nutrition, exercise, and sleep.

A healthy diet does more than keeps your weight down; it can give you increased energy, a better immune system, and the vitamins and minerals your body needs for both immediate and long-term health. A nutritious diet can help ward off disease and mitigate negative effects of age and disease later in life. A good balance of protein, carbohydrates, and fruits and vegetables can provide a well-rounded diet and will make you feel good from the inside out.

Physical activity and exercise is another absolutely vital component to a healthy lifestyle. Staying active should include both dedicated exercise time as well as regular physical activity throughout your daily life. Aerobic exercise strengthens your cardiovascular system and helps loose excess weight. Strength training and toning can increase your metabolism while providing a healthy layer of muscle. Stretching and anaerobic activities can decrease stiffness and joint aches or help prevent them in the future as well as providing numerous psychological benefits. Daily physical activity such as parking a few extra spots away from the store or taking the stairs instead of the elevator are simple but effective to add more exercise into your normal life.

The third absolute requirement of a healthy life is sleep. Both quality and quantity are important, affecting your mental health and physical well-being. Sticking to a regular sleep schedule, limiting or eliminating reliance on sleep medication, providing a conducive environment and limiting naps can help to ensure quality sleep. Sleep deprivation is considered a form of torture for a reason: lack of sleep can cause physical pain, lack of focus, confusion, aching, and dangerous behaviors. Ongoing lack of sleep can also contribute to mental health issues such as depression.

To truly be a healthy you, you must address all three of these critical areas. Even if you don’t think you can or need to eat well, exercise regularly, and sleep soundly, your body will thank you for it later!

© 2012 Tiffiny Twardowksy, Energy in Motion LLC
 

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