Most people want to be healthy, fit and be in better shape, especially if they come across and got inspired by blogs about health and fitness, such as the thefitnessjunkieblog.com. However, thinking about hitting the gym, changing lifestyle and spending time working out can be daunting. But with enough commitment and proper motivation, having a better shape can be attained. Here are three fitness tips to a healthier lifestyle that will help you get into good shape and feel better about yourself:
The human body is about 75 to 80 percent water. Nothing can substitute water and the benefits it can bring to our body. Any type of soda, even the diet ones will only ruin digestion, and can lead to obesity and diabetes. Six to eight glasses of water daily will help improve your skin, hydrate you, enhance digestion and help your body to remove accumulated toxins. Hence, when you are thirsty, quench your thirst with water.
Water makes you energized and even help you lose weight. This best energy drink ever boosts your metabolism. To know how much water your body needs, divide your body weight in pounds by two and that is the amount of water in ounces you need to consume daily, according to the fitness gurus of Shape.
Avoid alcohol as you avoid soda, or drink them in moderate amounts. A glass of cocktail, beer or wine is a glass of calories. Cocktails can slow down your metabolism, make you gain weight and reduce your brain function.
Include an Apple in Your Daily Diet
Apples have beneficial antioxidants that protect your body cells from premature destruction. They also have pectin that can greatly help improve intestinal elimination. Apples’ sugars are natural and far better than that of candy bars or energy drinks. Furthermore, the fruit has the needed minerals and vitamins such as vitamin C, vitamin B1 and biotin. The famous saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” is true.
Walk every day
Walking is among the healthiest exercises and it is easy, simple and very doable. It does not need a workout DVD, an equipment like weights, or a gym membership. You just need a place to walk and a pair of shoes. Walking outdoors is better than walking on a treadmill because of the scenery that you can savor. The fresh air doesn’t hurt either.
If you are not used to walking, you can start with a mile a day, or 5,280 feet. Anyone can walk a mile in 20 minutes. If you are a walker, you can walk for twice as much miles at almost twice as much speed.
Walk if you get the chance. Park farther away from your office building. Take the stairs instead of an escalator or elevator. Every step in the day gives a positive contribution to your health.
Fitness cannot be achieved overnight. It takes time to reach that goal. It is an ideal lifestyle that gives you more energy, strength and endurance. Know more about improving your health and fitness. Subscribe to thefitnessjunkieblog.com. It is informative and free.
Electro acupuncture can offer relief from symptoms in as short as 12 weeks, study reveals
Scientists have revealed the results of a new study where people suffering from severe constipation could find relief from electro acupuncture.
Electro acupuncture is a modern form of the ancient medical practice in China, where needles are placed in key points in the body. This new variation includes the introduction of electrical stimulation. Participants in the trials reported an improved way of life and a significant decrease in the symptoms after just 8 weeks of treatment.
Electro acupuncture involves inserting thin needles under the skin. These needles are hooked into a device that sends measured electric impulses to a person’s body. This development is welcome news for patients who are difficult to treat due to various reasons.
At the same time, news of this discovery was welcomed by the medical community. University of Calgary Cummings School of Medicine in Canada’s leading expert in gastroenterology, Dr. Christopher Andrews, was pleased to hear of the extensive trials and testings for the treatments. He said there have been plenty of alternative therapy options before, but none of them were backed up by scientific evidence.
This sentiment was echoed by Temple University School of Medicine (Philadelphia) professor Dr. Henry Parkman. He noted that electro acupuncture treatment will be a good alternative for patients who do not respond to regular medical treatment. These people are called refractory patients and have extreme cases of functional constipation.
He further explained that these patients only have bowel movements a maximum of twice per week. Their condition is not caused by medication or other medical problems.
More than a thousand patients were tested for the study. Half of the group was given electro acupuncture in Miami via needles inserted into the muscle layer of the abdominal wall. The control group on the other hand, were also inserted with needles, but only at a shallow level, and the areas selected since they were not the acupuncture points. This is the equivalent of being given placebos during a drug trial.
Expert acupuncturists were called in to administer the real and pretend treatments. Participants received a total of 28 sessions, each one lasting 30 minutes.
After eight weeks, 31 percent of the electro acupuncture. The group reported having three or more bowel movements in a span of one week. Experts say a human body should void its bowels three times per day to three times per week. This is considered the normal frequency.
The positive results continued after the trial was finished. One of the study’s authors and researchers, Dr. Jia (Marie) Liu from the China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences in Beijing expressed surprise after seeing the results. She said the post-treatment results could have been brought about by the sustained effect of electro acupuncture. Peak results were recorded on the 8th week of the trial period.
According to New York acupuncturist Dr. Daniel Hsu, acupuncture works by signaling the body to release its own painkillers. At the same time, it calms the nervous system. He further explained that stress can cause the system to become constipated and switches on the flight or flight response.
On the other hand, while the study is considered to be a tremendous success, it may not be replicated on a larger scale yet. The frequency needed may be difficult for some. The patients received electro acupuncture stimulation as often as five times per week. The cost of treatment may also be a limiting factor: it costs between $60 to $120 per session.
Sugar, like many other things in life, is not necessary a bad thing. In fact, we need sugar. We consume carbohydrates that our body breaks down into sugar, which then provides us with the necessary energy that fuels our everyday bodily processes. Without sugar, we would not survive.
Over consumption of sugar, however, is the problem. In the last year, studies have shown that the average American’s consumption of sugar can now be pegged at ten to eleven tablespoons per day—a considerable jump from when the average consumption of sugar in the 17th century was four pounds annually.
Taking in too much sugar spells bad news for our bodies; we were not built to absorb large amounts of sugar without sustaining significant effects.The maximum amount of sugar that the body can handle (without negative effects) is two tablespoons daily.
This is not limited to just the obviously sweet stuff; today, we consume sugar mainly through processed food, which contains high amounts of high-fructose corn syrup, or HFCS. Several food processing companies prefer using HFCS to regular table sugar because the former is sweeter and more affordable, thereby a more cost-effective option in the long-term.
HFCS is much more dangerous than regular sugar; studies show that fructose consumption can actually increase the risk of cancer development, as cancer cells proliferate more readily in the presence of fructose. When the body metabolizes HFCS, especially, the effects are more drastic, as opposed to when the body processes normal table sugar.
While sugar is good in moderate amounts, overconsumption can result in the following effects on the human body:
Potential For Liver Damage
The liver detoxifies chemicals in the human body, and does the same for large amounts of sugar. When it processes high levels of fructose in the blood regularly, this takes a severe toll on the liver and can lead to liver damage over time. While this happens over several years, the liver is a sensitive bodily organ, and it is not worth risking causing irreversible damage if left untreated.
Weight Gain And Irregular Metabolic Function
Insulin is a hormone that is secreted by the pancreas, and serves as the body’s way of regulating its sugar levels. Too much sugar intake can result in the development of insulin resistance, where the pancreas fail to stimulate insulin, leaving the sugar in your body to go unprocessed. This sets off a chain of events that tricks your body into thinking it is not receiving enough nutrition, an you to feel hungry and eat more.
This snowballs into more serious effects, such as metabolic dysfunction. One of the ways this condition manifests is the development of classic metabolic syndrome, which includes symptoms like high blood sugar, obesity, decreased (low-density lipoprotein) LDL and increased (high-density lipoprotein) HDL, andhigher levels of triglycerides. Classic metabolic syndrome is treatable, but if left unchecked has the potential to develop into serious conditions like coronary heart disease, diabetes, and stroke.
Increased Uric Acid Levels
The body produces normal amounts of uric acid in response to the breakdown of nitrogen in your system. An increase in sugar intake results in the body’s uric acid levels climbing high enough to potentially develop into kidney and heart disease, especially if sustained over long periods of time. The correlation between uric acid levels and fructose intake is especially strong; if the body’s uric acid level rises above normal, it is often an indicator of a risk for type 2 diabetes.
Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Also known as NAFLD, non-alcohol fatty liver disease is a condition that gives you all the effects of excessive alcohol intake, minus the alcohol consumption (and possibly the accompanying fun stuff). The body processes sugar the same way as it does alcohol, and an excess in the former results in insulin resistance and abnormal amounts of fat in the blood. In addition, a constant over-intake of sugar can cause the brain to develop dependence on sugar, very similar to what happens when one becomes eventually “hooked” on alcohol over time.
Type 2 Diabetes
Possibly the most well-known effect of excess sugar intake is the development of type 2 diabetes. Unlike type 1 diabetes, which is hereditary, type 2 is acquired over time and cannot be reversed. Also known as diabetes mellitus type 2, this is a metabolic condition that is marked by constant high blood sugar levels and insulin resistance. The body no longer processes sugar in the same way (brought about by the insulin resistance and lack of insulin), which is why people with type 2 diabetes generally undergo significant weight loss, frequent urination, and increased thirst and hunger. Once acquired, type 2 diabetes is a lifelong condition.
Moderation is key. A change in one’s dietary restrictions may be all it takes to prevent many of these conditions from developing. Switching from drinking sweetened drinks to water, for example, can make a significant difference in reducing how much sugar your body processes each day.