Thank You For Visiting Our Blog, FEEL BETTER AND LIVE LONGER!

The purpose of our blog is to share what we have learned about nutrition, weight loss, fitness, and health, in order to help you find ways to feel better and live longer. It is amazing how much our diet and lifestyle affect our health and well-being.

Did you know that you can reduce your risk and even prevent many diseases and health conditions simply by making some changes to your diet? Check back often for valuable tips and information.


HOW TO LOSE WEIGHT & KEEP IT OFF:

For the first time in my life I have found weight loss success. During my adult life I have tried dozens and dozens of so-called "diets" and none of them worked over the long-haul. Oh, I was able to lose weight with some of them, but once I went off of the "diet" I quickly gained back all of my weight (plus some).

I have finally learned that losing weight has to be a lifestyle change, not a temporary fix. Crash diets and all the other crazy diets will not only cause you to fail, they are harmful to your health. To lose weight and keep it off you must NOT go on a "diet." What? Why? Because we all consider a "diet" a temporary thing. For example, how many times have you said, "Oh, I will go on this low-fat diet until I lose 20 pounds." Okay, what happens after you lose the 20 pounds? Or you simply give up? You go back to your old habits and gain that 20 pounds back.

The only way you will ever be successful at losing weight, with the added benefit of improving your health, is to make healthy changes that you can live with for the rest of your life. Period. Not for a week, a month or 3 months, but for life. For me, my initial goal was to lower my cholesterol level. I had to have a blood test for my insurance coverage and my cholesterol level had to be lower than the previous year's levels or I would have to pay a much higher premium. Well, that was a pretty good incentive for me make some positive changes.

I sat down and figured out what I needed to do. I knew I had to change the way I ate and I knew I had to exercise in some form or other every day. So, I made a list and I stuck to it. It was difficult at first. To make matters worse, I am a compulsive eater. However, as the days went by, it became much easier because my body stopped craving sweets and processed foods. For the first time in my life, I was never tempted to binge because I never felt deprived.

Use the list below and make whatever changes you need to make in order for it to work for you. FYI, my cholesterol level dropped 65 points after 7 weeks, and my triglycerides dropped 70 points!
Another benefit that I hadn't planned on was that after being an insomniac since my teen-age years, I now sleep like a baby every night!

MY LIST FOR WEIGHT LOSS SUCESS:

1. Avoid "white" Foods & Processed Foods.
These foods have no nutritional value and are "empty" calories. Sweets, anything made with white flour,and anything that comes in a package with a long list of ingredients.
Always read the food labels. Stay away from those long lists of ingredients. The longer the list, the more chemicals and additives are present. These are extremely toxic to your body.


2. Drink Lots of
Water. Water keeps your body's organs hydrated and flushes out unhealthy toxins. It helps to fill you up and reduces your urge to over-eat.


3. Eat a Healthy Breakfast.
Instead of coffee and donuts, try fruit, yogurt, grains like oatmeal or whole grain toast, and lean protein. NEVER skip breakfast. By eating a large, healthy meal when you get up in the morning, your metabolism will "rev up" and you will not be hungry by mid-morning. If you skip breakfast, your
body will go into starvation mode and store calories in your body as FAT, yes FAT! So do yourself a big favor and eat breakfast.


4. Reduce Your Stress Level.
So many of us live with too much
stress. Stress lowers your immune system, making it easier to get sick. It also makes us lethargic, tired, and depressed. There are a lot of simple things you can do and a lot of ways to feel better about yourself and your life. Take a long, hot bath, read a book, listen to music, get a massage. Do something nice for yourself. Giving yourself something to look forward to is a tremendous mental incentive.


5. Move!
Oh my gosh! There are so many ways to incorporate movement into your day, even at work. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Get up every hour and walk around your floor, your hallway or your desk. Park your car in the farthest space from where you need to be. Walk or bike to work. Skate, dance, golf, jump rope, clean house, play tag. The best exercise you can do is to walk. Try to take a walk every day! The more you move, the more your metabolism will be your friend. (I walk 3 miles every day whether it is raining, snowing or freezing.)


How to Stay Sharp

None of us want to lose our ability to think clearly as we age. In order to stay sharp no matter what your age, you need to keep your brain stimulated. There are many ways you can do that.


Here are just a few of them:

1. Take a Walk. Walking for just 20 minutes a day can lower blood sugar. That helps stoke blood flow to the brain, making you think more clearly.

2. Learn How to Dance. Learning dance moves activates brain motor centers that form new neural connections. Dancing also calms the brain's stress response.

3. Volunteer at the Hospital. Helping others and interacting with them activates many parts of the brain, helps keep your stress level down, forces you to stay focused and keeps your mind occupied on others instead of focusing on your own problems.

4. Work Crossword Puzzles, Sudoku or Brain Teasers. Working puzzles keeps your mind challenged, busy and healthy. Plus, it’s a great way to prevent boredom and relieve stress.

5. When you Walk, Look Around. Don't just keep your eyes forward. Look to the left and to the right. These actions can activate rarely used parts of the brain that can spur brain cell growth and new neural connections.

6. Read a Good Book. As you read, conjure a mental image of the characters and what they look like, what they are doing, and their surroundings. By doing this, you activate multiple areas in the brain and encourage memory formation.

7. Meditate. Sit quietly, choose a word that calms you, and when your mind starts to wander, say the word silently. This type of activity can reduce the stress hormone cortisol, which zaps memory. Meditation also helps reduce feelings like depression and anxiety.

8. Take a class. Live near a college? Taking classes can stave off dementia. If you don’t want to do something that formal, join a book club or go to seminars or other educational events.

9. Replace Candy with Fruit. Fruit provides fiber and antioxidants that help scrub plaque from brain arteries and mop up free radicals that inhibit clear thinking.

10. Listen to Music. TV provides a lot of stimulation, but watching too much can dull brain transmission. Instead, listen to your favorite relaxing music. Music lowers stress hormones that inhibit memory and increase feelings of well-being that improve focus.

11. Redecorate.  Plant flowers. Redecorate the kitchen. Rearrange your closets. Clean out drawers. Making such changes can alter motor pathways in the brain and encourage new cell growth.

12. Sleep. Shut-eye isn't a luxury. It's when your brain consolidates memories. Poor sleep, caused by worry, depression, or insomnia, can interfere with your rest.

13. Read the News. Keeping up with the latest not only activates the memory part of the brain but also gives you something to talk about with friends and family. That kind of socializing can activate multiple parts of your brain and encourage cell growth.

14. Play an Instrument. Playing a musical instrument is associated with lower dementia risks. It also eliminates boredom, a brain state that can cause some thinking skills to atrophy.

15. Play Board Games. Monopolgy, Risk, Pictionary, Scrabble, or Boggle; board games are associated with a lower risk of developing dementia. They activate strategic, spatial, and memory parts of the brain, and require you to socialize, which can help form new neural pathways.

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