Showing posts with label Nutrition. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Nutrition. Show all posts

Sports Nutrition In 5 Easy Layers

Glamour Of Nutritional Supplements

Nutrition is a high tech business with millions of pounds of research being spent on the latest ergogenic aides, but for most people getting the basics of nutrition right will reward them with maximised sports performance, healthy weight loss and body, and a robust immune system. Unfortunately the basics on nutrition are often not met, being eclipsed by high tech products such as creatine, HMB, weight loss tablets such as Proactol, Zotrim or Alli, or the plethora of weight loss and fitness supplements that are marketed to us.A common mistake made by those looking for improved sports performance, weight loss or health is to look for a supplement to do the job. People concern themselves with exotic products rather than addressing the basics first.


Hierarchy Of Nutritional Needs

Considering nutritional needs to be a hierarchy of needs is a good way to develop a successful nutritional strategy. You may be aware of food pyramids - the ones you learn in cookery at school, or the ones found on sites such as the Good Food Guide - but these have some fundamental flaws in them (for another blog post). Consider the pyramid to have a wide base representing the most fundamental of nutritional needs, and an narrowing towards the top representing nutrients that are gradually more specialist towards the top. The more specialist needs we see at the top should only be considered once the fundamental base needs have been met.

Base Layer 1 - The Fundamentals: 

The basic needs of nutrition can be met by including a balance of the macronutrients carbohydrates, fat and protein. The balance will vary with your lifestyle requirements and body type. Essential to get the system working is water and fibre, both soluble and insoluble. These will largely be met if you consume lean meats, fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds and fish. Limit your intake of sugar and refined grains which are considered to be anti-nutrients and actually contribute no nutritional value apart from energy, yet use up resources in the process. Add protective and micro-nutrient rich foods such as variety of colourful fruits and vegetables. Try to include raw or lightly cooked foods as the nutrient content may become denatured by intense heat.

Layer 2 - Protection:

Part of life is oxidation, and this is part of exercise too. As a metal car rusts so do we, and when we talk of anti-oxidants we are usually considering ways of limiting or repairing the damage caused by the aerobic nature of our body functions - free radicals affect our health and well being. Once the fundamentals are established you can consider tweaking your micro-nutrient needs to include anti-oxidants that are essential in combating free radical damage to the body including immune system.Consider the fruit and vegetables you do consume according to their anti-oxidant content. The richer in anti-oxidants the better able to combat the oxidative stresses placed on the body by air pollution and intense exercise, both of which place damage on the cells of the body. Taking a broad spectrum multivitamin may add to the daily protection from free radical oxidation, and a regular intake of omega 3 oils, through foods or supplement form will also help.Below is a table of high antioxidant food types. Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) is a method of measuring antioxidant capacities in biological samples. The higher the ORAC the more antioxidants are available. (US Dept. Agriculture; Brunswick Laboratories; JACS)FOOD: ORAC UNITS PER 100G70% cocoa solid dark chocolate 13500Pomegranate 10500Dried prunes 5770Red delicious apples 4270Raisins 2830Kale 2410Blueberries 2400Garlic 2320Blackberries 2040Spinach 1700Brussels sprouts 1580Strawberries 1540Alfalfa sprouts 1450Broccoli flowers 1290Raspberries 1220Beets 1170Plums 949Red bell peppers 810oranges 750Corn 720Cherries 670Onion 560Eggplant 510Cauliflower 510Cabbage 480Potato 460Sweet potato 430Leaf Lettuce 410String Bean 390Carrot 340Yellow squash 280Iceberg lettuce 230Tomato 195Celery 130Cucumber 110


Layer 3 - Fueling For Sport - Real Food

Now you have a good general diet, an availability of macronutrients and micronutrients and a consideration of how best to protect our body from free radicals for health and immunity, it is time to consider what and when is best to eat. Also an optimum hydration strategy will be useful for those performing exercise - whether for sports or weight loss.Fluid needs are closely linked to air temperature and humidity, plus the intensity and duration of your exercise. If exercising aim to begin fully hydrated - a guide is to keep your urine a light straw colour, and re-hydrate immediately post workout. If you weight yourself pre and post workout, add the mass of the fluid you consumed during the exercise to the difference between pre and post workout weights. Aim to consume 1.5 times this figure.Example; pre workout 75kg, post workout 74kg, drinks 500ml during workout = 0.5kg so a difference of 1.5kg. It is therefore advised to consume 2.25l fluids post workout.Fueling your sports from food is also essential. I recommend making a daily 500kcal deficit if you are trying to lose weight. If you use 1000kcal during a workout it is therefore useful to eat accordingly, so you do not have too much of a calorie deficit, and you do not overeat.If you are like me and love to eat carbohydrates it is best to consume them pre and post workout as you are highly insulin sensitive during and up to 2 hours post exercise, particularly if your training consists of high intensity intervals or resistance exercises. However for best weight loss I suggest you stick to whole grain and vegetable sources of carbohydrates, and avoid sugar.For athletes my advice is different in that you are not trying to create a calorie deficit. More focus is on recovery for the next session. You should therefore consume your carbohydrates during and after exercise as this is when your body will best use it - absorbing it like a sponge and maximising your recovery and boosting your immune system. If you burn 1000kcal in training aim to replace this with real food during your session - cereal bars, flap jacks and dried fruit. Post workout try to include protein with your meal, whether it is in a milk shake, bowl of cereal or meat and veg meal. Aim to consume a proper meal within 2 hours post exercise and have a snack within 15mins of exercise.

Layer 4 - Fueling For Sport - Sports Nutrition

Firstly I have to say that if you are after weight loss avoid sports drinks at all cost. They are essentially sugar and will do your weight loss efforts no good at all, will make it difficult to create a calorie deficit, and will make it difficult for your body to access fat stores for energy if an available source of sugar is present to use.My advice for athletes is to use sports drinks to enhance your sport. Although nutrition and hydration needs can be met through food and water such as dried fruit, cereal bars etc, there are benefits of using special sports drinks. They provide a ready source of easily assimilated energy which is essential if exercising for over 1hour in a bike or run race. The stress on the gastric system is minimised and in the case of electrolyte drinks the essential minerals lost in sweat are replaced. The lack of fibre in sports drinks is also beneficial in longer races such as marathon or long course triathlon.Recently a series of protein:carbohydrate drinks for use during training have been launched. These are particularly useful for sessions or races over 3h in duration as the branched chain amino acids (BCAA) that are catabolised in muscle during endurance events are 'saved' by the available BCAA in the sports drink.Recovery drinks are also a revolution in the quest for swift recovery. In the field, recovery drinks allow athletes to consume a meal within the 15minute window of opportunity bu drinking a 2:1 carbohydrate to protein drink, that often contains vitamins and minerals too. This 15 minutes post race or training session is so crucial due to the ability of the body to use the materials we provide it. We are highly insulin sensitive, and any protein we consume with the carbohydrate will have the extra insulin to deliver it to where it is needed - the muscle - where repair will take place and glycogen will be replenished.

Layer 5 - Ergogenic Aids

If you have the first 4 levels of the hierarchy of nutrition needs sorted then it may be beneficial to invest in some supplements such as creatine, beta-alanine, caffeine or HMB, and depending on your sport each of these may or may not be beneficial. However if you have not fully adopted the principles of real food and sports nutrition there is no way that you will be able to rely on a supplement to realise your potential. Unfortunately as with everything, there are no short cuts and although it may take time and effort the gains you will get from real food and hydration will far outweigh the gains from the specialist supplements mentioned - even if their adverts promise otherwise. It is essential to walk before you can run when it comes to nutrition, and to get the building blocks in place before trying supplements is the key to success.



8 Keys to Proper Diet and Nutrition

There are a few misconceptions about diet and nutrition. I don't typically like the word diet since many associate it with specific eating habits that are followed for a period of time and then you get off the diet. Nutrition on the other hand is something that we all know is important, but it just seems a fancy word that takes itself too seriously. In the end nutrition seemed to be a better description of what I wanted to explore, so here are some basic guidelines for any general diet and nutrition plan.
A healthy body is similar to a finely-tuned car. And there is nothing better than keeping the body tuned than following a balanced diet and nutrition program. This does not have to be restrictive; it should just follow some basic guidelines. The body needs food as its fuel and lifestyle, exercise and mental attitude as its regular maintenance for it to achieve its health potential. This explains the relation between health, diet and nutrition. Putting in the wrong fuel or forsaking the right fuel will prevent your body from delivering its power and best performance. Nothing is more important than proper diet and nutrition because without it, the body engine will splutter, cough and eventually stall. However, when following a balanced diet and nutrition, you can benefit from:
  • Added vitality and energy
  • Obtaining the weight that's ideal for you
  • Stronger and more powerful immune system
  • Improved overall body performance
  • Delayed effects of aging
  • Being fit and active
  • Lessened fatigue and tiredness
  • Healthy teeth and gums
  • Enhanced ability for concentration
  • Total health which means less risks for diseases
How can you achieve proper diet and nutrition?
Basically, proper diet and nutrition can be achieved from following the simple guidelines outlined below. A well-balanced diet and nutrition program includes:

1. Low fat

Almost all nutritionists and health experts agree that cutting down on fats from butter, cream, fried foods, oils and margarine is the best way to reduce weight and make your modern diet and nutrition healthier. This is also particularly important for a healthy heart.

2. Moderate Carbohydrates

Because many people have gone weight-conscious, they have forgotten the importance of rice, potatoes, pasta, cereals and bread to their health. Carbohydrates are important for vitality and energy so if you want to energize your body, take in foods that are rich in good quality carbohydrates.

3. High Fiber

Fiber is the large indigestible part of the food that you take in everyday. It doesn't only get you chewing, it also keeps the inner part of your body moving smoothly, helps prevent bowel cancer and gallstones, helps lower cholesterol, and keeps your weight in check. Grain breads and whole wheat are good sources of fiber.

4. Vitamins and Minerals

Fruits, vegetables and grains are abundant with vitamins and minerals as well as with other natural substances that functions as antioxidants. These foods help the body fight the free radicals that you get from bad foods and pollutants that could damage membranes, and cells.

5. Eat Variety of Foods

Eating a variety of foods will help you get all the nutrients your body needs. Try having a meal with foods rich in protein, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals and you get all the good nutrients your body deserves. Each meal should contain food from all 3 macro nutrient groups.

6. Limit Consumption of Sugar and Sweets

Sugar can help you stay active and on the go however, when taken excessively, adds unwanted kilojoules in your body and can displace and dispose other important foods especially in kids. Excessive intake of sugar and sweets may also cause tooth decay and other dental problems.

7. Limit Consumption of Salt

The usual diet and nutrition program is laden with salt. While most people think that salt is a good flavoring for all foods, it actually masks the real flavor of the food you are eating. Not only that! Many packaged and prepared meals have high levels of sodium that is bad for your health so it is very important that you buy fresh produce. When buying packaged food, look for labels with no-added-salts or foods with reduced amount of sodium. One other alternative is to switch to sea salt for food preparation.

8. Increase Intake of Fluid

Two liters or eight glasses of water is needed to keep your body hydrated as well as to keep your kidneys and other organs working efficiently. Don't be fooled by fruit juices, energy drinks, or alcohol! Many of these drinks add calories that people ignore in their daily consumption and drinks like coffee and alcohol actually dehydrate the body. They are not considered helpful fluid because they act as diuretics that force your kidneys to excrete more fluid. Water is your best choice, so stick to it.

Summary

Proper diet and nutrition is rather easy to achieve. Just incorporate the above mentioned foods in your daily diet and nutrition program. Enjoy the food you eat and take your time to appreciate them and for sure, you'll be healthier than ever!

Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar, Backed by Science

Apple cider vinegar has a lot of benefits for your health. It's no surprise why Oprah, 20/20 and CBS, to mention a few, all rave about apple cider vinegar and its benefits.

There are also many books written about apple cider vinegar describing how excellent it is for your health. The best-selling books on the subject include Apple Cider Vinegar Miracle Health System by Patricia Bragg, Amazing Apple Cider Vinegar by Earl Mindell, Apple Cider Vinegar for Weight Loss and Good Health by Cynthia Holzapfel and Dr. Karkar's Proponents believe that apple cider vinegar can cure or help with a myriad of diseases and health problems such as arthritis, osteoporosis, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, cancer, infection, indigestion, memory and aging. 

Also, the most talked-about benefit of apple cider vinegar apparently is its help with weight loss.

Here are some of the major benefits of apple cider vinegar:

1. apple cider vinegar and weight loss

2. apple cider vinegar and acid reflux

3. apple cider vinegar and acne

4. apple cider vinegar and wart

5. apple cider vinegar and heartburn

6. apple cider vinegar and yeast infection

7. apple cider vinegar and arthritis

8. apple cider vinegar for skin

9. apple cider vinegar and cholesterol

10. apple cider vinegar for hair

11. apple cider vinegar and blood pressure

12. apple cider vinegar for sinus infection

13. apple cider vinegar and candida

14. apple cider vinegar and gout

15. apple cider vinegar and detox

16. apple cider vinegar and dandruff

17. apple cider vinegar and gerd

18. apple cider vinegar and hair loss

19. apple cider vinegar and constipation

20. apple cider vinegar and diabetes

Apple cider vinegar is great for you. With its so many benefits, it's no wonder why a lot of people are talking about apple cider vinegar and what it can do for your health.
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Top 7 List of High Protein Foods That Build Muscle

Protein is without a doubt, the most important nutrient for packing slabs of lean muscle mass onto your body. You may lift weights until you turn purple or consume all the carbohydrates, fats, and other micro-nutrient in the world, but if you fail to feed your body with adequate amount of protein, you can forget about having a lean muscular physique.

High protein consumption is a must for serious mass development and also for repairing muscle tissue damaged after an intense iron blasting workout.

How much protein must one consume daily to build muscle successfully? For proven results, the general rule of thumb should be approximately 1 to 1.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight. So if you weigh 150 pounds you should

strive to consume about 150 grams to 225 grams of protein per day. Now how does one consume a large amount of protein on a daily basis? No worries as I've compiled a list of 7 high protein foods that can help you build muscle in record time.

1. Whey - Without shadow of a doubt, the king of all protein sources. In terms of quality and biological value, whey protein is definitely way ahead (pun intended) of other protein sources. We're talking about a top quality, complete protein source which has significantly faster absorption rate compared to other high protein foods, and includes every essential amino acid for increase strength and quicker muscle growth.

2. Eggs - Never forget to add this natural food source to your muscle building diet as they are jam packed with protein, vitamins, and other essential minerals. Eggs are regarded as the standard food for developing an impressive muscular physique and have long been treated as a bodybuilding staple. One whole egg contains approximately 6 grams of high biological value protein. Eggs are also easy to prepare and simply delicious to eat.

3. Fish - Another great high protein food. A can of tuna in water for example, provides about 30 grams of protein and here's the kicker; it has absolutely zero carbohydrates and fat! If tuna is not your thing (I don't really fancy it either), you may try other types of fish such as Spanish mackerel, cod, or salmon fillets. Most fish fillets have approximately 22 grams of protein per 3.5 oz serving. Apart from being an excellent source of protein, fish also contains a high amount of omega-3 fatty acids, essential for proper functioning of the body and brain.

4. Chicken or turkey breast - A list of high protein foods that build muscle is incomplete without this excellent protein source. Chicken breast is considered among the best sources of protein available because it comprises of mostly lean white chicken meat that contains minimal fat, and loaded with vitamin B6 for optimal heart protection.

Best of all, this portion of the meat is extremely high in protein. How much protein you ask? Well, a staggering 30 grams of protein per 3.5 oz serving! Consuming 7 oz of chicken breast nets you about 60 grams of protein which is almost half of your daily mass building requirement if you weigh 150 pounds.

5. Red meat - An extremely tasty protein source which has all the trimmings of a great muscle building food. A large 6 oz steak provides about 40 grams of high quality protein. Beef is rich in B-complex vitamins and also loaded with creatine to help you hit the weights aggressively by boosting your cellular energy through the roof.

6. Milk - This beverage serves as a decent muscle building source due to its high protein content including a large

array of amino acids for promoting muscle growth. If that's not enough, this highly nutritious beverage also offers many health benefits by providing a respectable amount of vitamins, mineral, and calcium. Drinking milk is a great way to achieve your daily protein target. Have a 6 oz serving of steak plus 375ml glass of milk which supplies approximately 11 grams of protein. That's a total of 51 grams of muscle building protein in just one single meal!

7. Tofu - I included tofu among the list of high protein foods that build muscle largely because a lot of vegetarians who are into bodybuilding consume tofu almost exclusively in order to meet their daily protein requirement. I'm not a vegetarian but I do eat some tofu every now and again because they are a good low-calorie protein source, perfect for adding mass and getting lean. Aside from its high protein content, tofu is also cholesterol free and contains calcium,

B-vitamins, and isoflavones making it one of the most nutritious high protein foods available. Half a cup of Tofu can supply your body with about 20 grams of protein.

11 Tips to Fight Digestive Problems

In today's busy schedule and stressful lifestyle, junk food is in demand. We never think before eating that how this food will react in our digestive system. We just satisfy our taste buds without thinking about our body. Is it true or not? Everyone out there must get connected to these scenarios as our daily life demands such practices.

Do you suffer from hyper acidity and bloated stomach? Does unwanted gas production embarrass you in the public area? Well, most of the people suffer from the digestive problem and if we ignore its symptoms then it can get serious and can affect the other body part.

But now don't worry! There are various home remedies and natural ways to help support healthy digestive system. Here we present 11 things and habitual changes that are helpful in healing your digestive system.

1-Banana: Bananas help food pass through the digestive tract with ease and promotes regular bowel movement.

2-Apple Cider Vinegar: It is best known as a digestive tonic and it shows beneficial effects in immediate relief from various digestive problems. Mix it with water and add a spoon of citrus juice for added benefits.

3-Coriander: With digestive properties, ginger helps relief symptoms of indigestion, inflammation and burning sensation. Teaming coriander seeds with a glass of buttermilk showcase beneficial results.

4-Garlic: The pungent odor of garlic helps initiate gastric fire and often provide relief from unwanted gas and heartburn.

5-Fennel Seeds: These seeds have beneficial effects towards digestive health. They help ease bloating and spasmodic pain in the stomach.

6-Black Paper: It helps increase gastric juice flow and promotes healthy digestion. Combining the black paper powder with jiggery and buttermilk or with mint leaves and coriander powder will help reduce digestive problems.

7-Chew Your Food Thoroughly and Eat Slowly: Mostly the digestion of starch and sugar starts at mouth with saliva and enzyme, which helps break down the food and attack bacteria. It is considered to be a first step towards healthy digestion. When you eat fast, the stomach does not get the signal of its fullness properly and you tend to eat more food than necessary.

8-Keep Yourself Hydrated: Try to increase your water intake and help your digestive system to take nourishment and process food easily.

9-Manage the Stress Level: Stress doesn't only wreak havoc on your mind, it is able to mess with your digestion. Focusing on the relaxing activities like Yoga, walk, music, drawing, etc will help reduce stress and exert beneficial effects on your overall wellness.

10-Add Fibrous Food in Your Diet: The vegetables. Fruits, beans and whole grain and rich source of fibers and they help improve regular bowel movement. It has been proven that the people who eat high fibrous food are less prone to constipation problems.

11-Herbal Supplements: Along with all these home remedies and healthy habits, taking herbal supplements is beneficial to support healthy digestive system. Herbs like Anantamool, Amla, Avipattikar, Belpatra, Baheda, Chitrak Root, Chopchini, Haritaki, Hingvastak, Lavan Bhaskar, Pippali Root, Shigru, Sunthee, Triphala etc. helps support healthy digestive system.
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Learn About the Nutritional Needs of Your Body

The focus of this article is to help people understand how physical exercise and nourishment can help our body. It is essential to learn and study your individual requirements such as caloric intake, physical needs, and even nutritional health. You can start your search for nutritional information at fitness centers, libraries, or even visit your dietitian in order to receive guidance on living a healthy life.
Nutrition is required by your body in order to nurture it and to keep it working properly. Every day, we consume minerals and vitamins in order to get the nutrients to keep the body fit. So, how can an individual understand his/her nutritional requirements? You can simply begin by finding out information regarding the needs of your loved ones and your personal requirements. Furthermore, you can begin my making smart choices on the foods you prepare for your family or purchase from the market.
The recent FDA standards reveal that nutrition and eating safe has been implemented in many households in the United States. What actions have people taken in order to ensure proper nutritional intake? How do people fulfill this requirement and know which foods offer the best nutritional value?
You must have heard all sorts of information about cereals and milk with daily vitamin intake and what kind of value we get from selecting the right foods. However, how does this apply to the bodily functions that we perform on a daily basis? Your nutritional requirement can only be fulfilled when you start eating a balanced diet. You implement foods from every sector of the food pyramid into your diet.
People don't understand that sometimes our vitamin and mineral needs can outweigh the calorie intake required by the body. Thus, supplements are used in order to fill the gaps. All of these factors play a vital role in the nutritional requirements. As we age, we need to consider the various facets of nutritional needs. Females and males have varying needs, and the body of young women is totally different than the body of older women. Reevaluation and education of nutritional requirements is important as you pass various stages of your life.
It is time to start learning about your body because every individual is crafted differently. Proper nutritional education about how your body reacts to changes in your diet will help you focus on how you can take care of yourself more efficiently.

5 Ways To Manage Your Diet For Diabetes


Since my diagnosis with diabetes at the age of eleven, my own diet has changed dramatically. I maintain my current healthy weight with a great diet/eating plan. If you do plan on losing more than about a stone in weight then I would visit your doctor for more tips on how to do this without risk.

I’ve had diabetes for seven years now, but to tell you that how I maintain weight is perfect would be totally wrong of me. However, I can advise you to follow my steps because I know what works and what doesn’t. Before I really begin I must also say that I have been brought up by great parents who taught me to eat everything, and so I do! If there is something that you don’t like, there are loads of other diabetic recipes and ideas that you will eat and appreciate.

I am a university student and I like to buy fresh and organic produce from where I live. I believe that this is important because it can be the most good for your body and contain more nutrients and vitamins than most supermarket produce. I like to source food from my fortnightly farmers market in town, which sells amazing meat and dairy produce and fresh in season fruit and vegetables. This is another important thing to remember, that eating fruit and vegetables in their season means that they will taste better as well as doing you good. I have a lot of influence from Western European cuisine (mainly France and Italy) as you will tell, but I do not profess to be a chef and everything is easy to make and very convenient.

I have read countless diet books and diabetic recipe/diet books, and I came to a conclusion that I think really works. I fused all the good things from the diets (but not from every diet) and sort of put together my own one. I call this my Juvenile Diabetes Healthy Diet!

The “rules” that I would lay down are as follows:

1. Cut back on snacks and then change the type of snacks you eat.


Certainly my biggest downfall although it wasn’t really apparent to me. When I first started at University, I had little or no routine which meant that filling my day was difficult and popping into the kitchen for a snack, no matter how healthy it felt, was a regular occurence. This is one of the hardest things to do for some people, but establishing a great routine is essential to great diabetes care. The types of snacks to be eating are unsalted nuts, dried unsweetened fruit, fresh fruit, fresh vegetables (I love fresh red pepper and cucumber), dark chocolate (richer and nicer and you only want 2 squares usually).

2. Cut back on white flour and embrace wholemeal carbs.


This is the most essential part of your diet, and the thing that can show the biggest increase in loss of weight. Some diets in fact jsut focus on this point, and are very successful. Wholemeal (especially stoneground wholemeal) is so good for you and has so much more flavour in it that switching is much easier than you think. Most people are really surprised at the ranges you can get in you supermarket, again remember that the bread that is best for you is the one that is freshest with least perservatives or added ingredients. Also, brown or basmati rice is great with a lovely nutty texture. Wholemeal pasta is great and for your potatoes I would totally recommend the smaller new potatoes.

3. Stop drinking cocktails, start drinking wine.


Cocktails are full of sugar, colourants and preservatives. As a student I have had loads of practice at going out and not drinking cocktails, so my drink of choice is Malibu and Diet Coke if I feel I have to drink something and I make it last all night. I can then top up with Diet Coke (which has almost no sugar in it) and it looks as though I am drinking Malibu, who is to know. If you are out at a restaurant, red wine is much better than anything else you can order, (except water of course!) and it has been proven that the anti-oxidants in red wine are great for keeping a healthy heart. The recommended amount is one glass a day with your evening meal.

4. Start cooking more fruit and vegetables.


Fresh fruit and vegetables are a great way to get all the vitamins and minerals you need. And there are so many different ways in which to cook vegetables, but I find that raw is the best followed closely by steamed. Both of these ways preserve all their natural goodness as well. I will follow this post with another diabetes recipes post.

5. Drink more water.


I know you have heard people say this many times before, but the benefits of drinking more water are endless. A few tips on how to get more water into your day are firstly to put bottles of water at all the places you go in the house or work. So keep one in your desk, on your desk, a glass in the kitchen, the bedroom, the sitting room, etc. Try and drink all these glasses up and you will be well on your way to 8 glasses a day. The trick is to add a glass every few days or so, if you try to drink all that water in one go you won’t be so inclined to drink 8 glasses again, trust me! Have a go, it’s amazing how great you will feel.

Simple Food Diet Nutrition Remedies For Common Health Ailments


You are what you eat is a simple, time tested adage that still holds true today. There are non-medical remedies that can help with many of today’s most common illnesses and conditions. In fact, making simple changes to your food diet to cure your common cold, acne or constipation problems is a much better choice than resorting to drugs. For one, natural food and diet remedies most often do not give you harmful side-effects that western allopathic medicine can bring.

Here are some health ailments that can be easily treated with a simple food and diet remedy:

Allergies. More Americans suffer from allergies than ever before. Perhaps the best remedy for allergies is drinking at least 8 glasses of water a day. Garlic and cayenne pepper have been used for years, and a good intestinal cleansing has been shown to provide relief. Almonds and walnuts, as well as sunflower seeds, reduce symptoms, and make sure that you are taking a multi-vitamin with the recommended doses of vitamins C, A, E and zinc.

Acne. Acne in both teens and adults is also becoming more and more common. There are many natural dietary changes that you can make to help clear up your skin. First, drink water. It flushes out the impurities. Soy protein helps, as does increasing your consumption of whole grains, fresh fruits and root vegetables. Have three servings of oily fish weekly and add some cold pressed seed oil daily.

Constipation. To help constipation, increase your intake of folic acid. Apple pectin can help relieve constipation and add fiber to your diet. Try drinking some ginger tea or yerba mate in tea form. Cod liver oil is a tried and true, but hard to swallow, remedy. Warm dandelion tea also helps.

Stress. Holy basil, also known as Tulsi, has been used to relieve stress and normalize cortical levels. Limiting caffeine can help the body to reduce the level of adrenaline. When you’re particularly stressed out, eat carbohydrates and fresh vegetables. They help the body release serotonin which produce a feeling of well-being.

Cancer. Consuming the trace elements that are plentiful in seafood has been shown to help cancer patients. Broccoli, mustard greens, cabbage and turnips have been recently touted as not only preventative maintenance but perhaps even cures for different types of cancers. Limit your fats.

Help your body cure itself by trying some of these simple food and diet changes. By also including them in your regular diet, you also help in the prevention of these health problems and to build a strong immune system.

Diabetic Nutrition - Meal Planning In Action

Diabetic nutrition, diet, and weight control are the foundation of diabetes management. The most objective in dietary and nutritional management of diabetes is control of total caloric intake to maintain a reasonable body weight and stabilize the blood glucose level. Success of this alone is often with reversal of hyperglycemia in type 2 diabetes. However, achieving this goal is not always easy. Because nutritional agreement of diabetes is so complex and a registered dietitian who understands diabetes management has major responsibility for this aspect of therapeutic plan. Nutritional management of diabetic patient includes the following goals stated by American Diabetes association, Evidence-Based Nutrition Principles and Recommendations for the Treatment and Prevention of Diabetes and Related Complications, 2002:
  • Provide all the essential food constituents like vitamins and Minerals needed for optimal nutrition.
  • Meeting Energy needs
  • Maintaining reasonable weight
  • Avoidance of huge daily fluctuations of blood glucose level, with blood glucose level close to normal as is safe and practical to reduce risk or prevent the possibility of complications
  • Decrease serum lipid levels to reduce the risk of macro-vascular complication
For those diabetic people who require insulin to help control blood glucose levels, maintaining as much consistency as possible in the amount of calories, and carbohydrates ingested at the different meal time is essential. Additionally, precision in the approximate time intervals between meals with the addition of snacks as necessary helps in preventing the hypoglycemic reaction and maintaining the overall glucose control.
For obese with type 2 diabetes, weight loss is the key treatment. Obesity associated with an increase resistance of insulin is also a main factor in developing type 2 diabetes. Some obese who requires insulin or oral anti diabetic agents to control blood glucose levels may be able to reduce or eliminate the need for medication through weight loss. A weight loss as small as 10% of total weight may significantly improve blood glucose. In other instances wherein one is not taking insulin, consistent meal content or timing is not as critical. Rather, decreasing the overall caloric intake assume most importance. However, meals should not be skipped. Pacing food intake throughout the day places more manageable demands on the pancreas.
Long-term adherence to meal plan is one of the most challenging aspects of diabetes management. For the obese, it may be more realistic to restrict calories only moderately. For those who have lost weight, maintaining the weight loss may be difficult. To help diabetic people incorporate new dietary habits into lifestyle, diet education, behavioral therapy, group support and ongoing nutrition counseling are encouraged.
Diabetic Nutrition Meal Plan
Diabetic Meal plan must consider one's own food preferences, lifestyle, usual eating times, ethnic and cultural background. For those who are under intensive insulin therapy, there may be greater flexibility in timing and content of meals by allowing adjustments in insulin dosage for changes in the eating and exercise habits. Advances in insulin management permit greater flexibility schedules than previously possible. This in contrast to the older concept of maintaining a constant dose of insulin and requiring the a diabetic person to adjust his schedule to the actions and duration of the insulin.
The first step about meal planning is thorough review of a diet history to identify eating habits and lifestyle. A careful assessment of weight loss, gain or maintenance should also be undertaken. In most circumstances, those with type 2 diabetes requires weight reduction.

Diabetic meal Planning [The Making]

In teaching about meal planning, you must coordinate with a registered dietitian and if possible he must use educational tools, materials and approaches so you can fully grasp the idea of your nutritional requirements. Your initial education approaches the significance of consistent eating habits, the relationship between the food and insulin and the provision of an individualized meal plan. Then in-depth follow-up sessions which focuses on management skills, such as eating at the restaurants, reading food labels and adjusting the meal plan for exercise, illness and special occasion. An instance like there is an aspect of meal planning such as the food exchange system which may be difficult to learn or understand. You may ask him every meeting for clarification or might as well, leave him a message. Just remember that the food system provides a new way of thinking about the food rather than a new way of eating. Simplification as much as possible grants a good understanding during the teaching session and provides an opportunity to assess doubts and a need for repeat activities and information.
Caloric Requirements
Caloric requirements or your calorie-controlled diets are planned by means of calculating your energy needs (individual energy needs that varies in every person) and your caloric necessity based on your age, gender height and weight. Activity element is factored in to provide actual number of calories required for maintenance.
In the Diabetic Exchange List compiled by American Dietetic Association and American Diabetic association 2008, the appropriate amount of calorie controlled diets are depicted but you must approach a registered dietitian to closely assess you with your current eating habits and achieve realistic and individualized goals. This is so important because practically, developing a meal plan should be based on individual's usual eating habits and lifestyle to effectively control the glucose level as well as the weight loss maintenance. The priority for a young patient with type 1 diabetes, for example, should be a diet with enough calories to maintain normal growth and development. Initially, the target aim may provide a higher calorie to regain lost of weight.
Here is a reliable and simple Food Exchange List For Diabetic Meal Planning I got from Diabetes Teaching Center at University of California, San Francisco via Google.
Please Take note of all these and believe that there's no harm in trying!
Diabetic Nutrition Caloric Distribution
Diabetic nutrition in your diabetic Meal Plan also focuses on the percentage of calories that come from carbohydrates, proteins and fats. In general, carbohydrates have the greatest effect on blood glucose levels because they are more quickly digested and converted than other foods.

Carbohydrates

The American Diabetes Association recommends that for all levels of caloric intake, 50% to 60% of calories should be derived from carbohydrates, 20% to 30% from fats and remaining 10% to 20% from protein. Carbohydrates are consisted of sugar and starch. Most of the carbohydrates that are generally consumed came from starch, fruits and milk. Vegetable has also some carbohydrate. All carbohydrates should be eaten in moderation to prevent postprandial high glucose level. Foods high in carbohydrates such as sucrose are not totally eliminated from the diet but should be taken up in moderation up to 10% total calories only because these foods are typically high in fats and lack in vitamins, minerals and fibers.
Carbohydrate counting method is very important because it makes you conscious about your approximate amount of serving. The more carbohydrates you ingested, the more your blood glucose goes up. It is also a tool use in diabetic management because carbohydrates are the main nutrients in the food that influence the blood glucose level. This technique provides flexibility in food choices, can be less complicated and allows more accurate management with multiple daily insulin injections. When developing a diabetic meal plan using carbohydrate counting, all food sources should be considered. Once digested, 100% of your carbohydrate intake are converted to glucose. Around 50% of protein foods (meat,fish and poultry) are also converted to glucose. The amount of carbohydrates in foods is measured in GRAMS so you have to know which foods contain carbohydrates,learn to estimate the number of grams of carbohydrates in each food you eat and sum up all the grams of carbohydrates from every food you eat in order to get your total intake in a day. Examples of common food that contains carbohydrates; potatoes, legumes (e.g peas), corn, grains, dairy products (e.g milk and yogurt), snack foods and sweets (e.g cakes, cookies, deserts), and Juices (soft drinks, fruit drinks, energy drinks with sugar).
Lets say, you aim 50% of your total calories must come from carbohydrates. One gram of carbohydrates is about 4 calories. So, divide the number of calories you want to get from carbohydrates by 4 to get the number of grams. Example, you aspire to eat 2000 calories a day and get 50% of calories from carbohydrates.
Computation:
  • 0.50 x 2000 calories = 1000 calories
  • 1000 / 4 = 250 grams of carbohydrates
Take note that there are people who has lower tolerance of physical activity and there are also those who needs low-calorie diets and therefore, the carbohydrates need in every person really varies. In order to further master your caloric intake and your diet, feel free to contact a professional dietitian.
In terms of estimation on the amount of carbohydrates in every serving, you can refer to Food Exchange List or here are some examples taken from the food exchange list:
These Foods contain 15 grams of each serving:
  • Biscuit - 1 (1 1/2 inches across)
  • Bun (hot dog or hamburger) - 1/2 bun
  • Pancake (1/4 inch thick) - 1 (4 inches across)
  • Pita bread - 1/2 pocket ( 6 inches across)
  • Waffle -1 (4 inch square or 4 inches across)
  • Cooked barley 1/3 cup
  • Cooked Pasta - 1/3 cup
  • Cooked quinoa 1/3 cup
  • Cooked white or brown rice - 1/3 cup
  • Cassava - 1/3 cup
  • Corn 1/2 cup
  • Green Peas - 1/2 cup
  • Animal Crackers 8 crackers
  • Rice cakes, 4 inches across 2
  • Dried Apple 4 rings
  • blueberries 3/4 cup
  • dates 3
  • Fruit cocktail 1/2 cup
  • Mango juice 1/2 cup or 1/2 small
  • papaya 1 cup cubed (8oz)
  • Grape Juice - 1/3 cup
Although carbohydrate counting is now commonly used for blood glucose management of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, to some extent it affects the blood glucose to different degrees regardless of equivalent serving size. Thus, you have to be consciously noticing the fluctuations of your own blood glucose level and take action against any warning signs.
Diabetic Food Pyramid
The Diabetic Food Pyramid is another tool use to develop meal plan. It is commonly utilize for those with type 2 diabetes who have difficulty in abiding with calorie controlled diet. The food pyramid is consist of six food groups: 1.Breads, grains and other starches; 2. Vegetable (non-starchy vegetables); 3. Fruits; 4. Milk; 5. Meat, meat substitutes and other proteins; and 6. Fats, oils and sweets. The pyramid shape was chosen to emphasize that the foods in the largest area, the base of the pyramid (Starches, fruits and vegetables) are the lowest in calories and fats and highest in fiber and should make up the basis of the diet. For those with diabetes and as well as the general population, 50% to 60% of daily caloric intake must be from these three groups. As you move up the pyramid, foods higher in fats (particularly saturated fats) are illustrated; these foods should account for a smaller percentage of daily caloric intake. The very top of the pyramid comprises of fats, oils and sweets that should be sparingly by the people with diabetes to attain weight and blood glucose control and to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Fats and Diabetes
The recommendation regarding the fat content for the diabetic diet include both reducing the total percentage of calories from far sources to less than 30% of the total calorie and limiting the amount of saturated fats to 10% of total calories. Additional recommendations include limiting the total intake of dietary cholesterol to less than 30 mg/day. This approach may reduce risk factors such as elevated serum cholesterol levels, which are associated with the development of coronary heart disease, the leading cause of death and disability among people with diabetes. The meal plan may include the use of some non animal sources of protein to help reduce saturated fats and cholesterol intake. In addition, the amount of protein intake may be reduced to those who have early signs of renal disease.
Fiber Has a Lowering Glucose power
The use of fiber in diabetic diets has received an increased attention as the experts study the effects on diabetes of a high carbohydrate, high fiber diet. This type of diet plays a role in lowering the total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol in the blood. Increasing fiber diet may also improve blood glucose and decrease the need for exogenous insulin.
There are two types of dietary fibers: soluble and insoluble. Soluble fibers in foods such as legumes, oats and some fruits plays more of a role in lowering blood glucose and lipid levels than does insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber is thought to be related to the formation of a gel in the gastrointestinal tract. This gel slows stomach emptying and the movement of food in the upper digestive tract. The potential glucose lowering of the fiber may be cause by the slower rate of glucose absorption from the foods that contain soluble fibers. Insoluble fiber is found in whole grain breads and cereals and in some vegetables. This type of fiber plays more roles in increasing stool bulk and preventing constipation.
One risk involving the increase of fiber intake is that it may require adjustment of insulin dosage or oral anti diabetic agents to prevent hypoglycemia. If fiber is added or increase in the meal plan, it should be done gradually and with the actual consultation with a dietitian.
Misleading Labels
Food labeled as "sugarless" or "sugar-free" may still provide calories equal to the equivalent sugar-containing products if they are made with nutritive sweeteners. Hence, for weight loss, these products may not always be useful. Additionally, you must 'not' consider them as "free" to be eaten in unlimited quantity because they may elevate your blood sugar. Foods labeled "dietetic" are not necessarily reduced calorie foods. They may be lower in sodium or have other special dietary uses. They may still contain significant amounts of sugar or fats. Snack foods with labels like "Health Foods" may often contain carbohydrates like honey, brown sugar, and corn syrup. Additionally, these supposedly healthy snacks frequently has saturated vegetable fats, hydrogenated vegetable fats or animal fats which may be contraindicated if you have elevated blood lipids level.
So read the nutritional labels carefully to count the nutrients that your food contains...
Sweeteners
Using sweeteners can be acceptable for the diabetic people especially if it assists their overall dietary adherence. Moderation in the amount of sweetener used is encouraged to avoid potential adverse effect. There are two main types of sweeteners: nutritive and non-nutritive. The nutritive sweeteners contain calories and non-nutritive sweeteners have few or no calories in the amounts normally used.
Nutritive sweeteners include fructose (fruit sugar), sorbitol and xylitol. They are not calorie free; they provide calorie in amounts similar to those in sucrose (table sugar). They cause less elevation in blood sugar levels than sucrose and are often in "sugar-free" foods. Sweeteners containing sorbitol may have a laxative effect. Non-nutritive sweeteners have minimal or no calories. They are used in food products and are also available for table use. They produce minimal or no elevation in glucose level. Saccharin contains no calories. Aspartame (Nutra Sweet) is package with dextrose; it contains 4 calories per packet and losses sweetness with heat. Acesulfame-K (Sunnette) is also package with dextrose; it contains 1 calorie per packet. Sucralose (Splenda) is a newer non-nutritive, high intensity sweetener that is about 600 times sweeter than sugar. The Food and Drug administration has approved it for use in baked goods, non alcoholic beverages, chewing gums, coffee, confections, frosting and frozen dairy products.




7 Reasons To Grow Your Own Organic Vegetable Garden



During the last decades there has been a change towards mechanization and homogenization of farming, which uses pesticides, additives, herbicides, synthetic fertilizers and mass-production techniques. All this is clearly affecting mankind’s health, and new diseases are spreading rapidly amongst humans and animals (bird’s flu being the most recent one).

The World Health Organization produces reports to show how the use of chemicals and other products on food, coupled with the manufacturing processes involved, are actually a threat for our health.

If you have space for a few pots or even a small piece of land, it is a wise decision to grow your own organic vegetable garden. Today I’m presenting you with seven reasons for doing this:

1. You will have no additives in your vegetables. Research by organic food associations has shown that additives in our food can cause heart diseases, osteoporosis, migraines and hyperactivity.

2. There will be no pesticides or synthetic fertilizers used. These chemical products are applied to obtain crops all the time regardless plagues or weather conditions, and affect the quality of the vegetables. Besides, pesticides are usually poisonous to humans.

3. Your vegetables will not be genetically modified (GM). Antibiotics, drugs and hormones are used on vegetables to grow more and larger ones. One of the consequences of this practice are vegetables which look all the same and are usually tasteless. Besides, we end up consuming the hormones that have been used on the vegetables, with the potential risks for our health.

4. Eating your own organic vegetables will be much more healthy for you. They will not contain any of the products or chemicals named above, and they will be much more natural than any ones you would find at the supermarket. Your health will not be at risk because you will then know that nothing has been added to your vegetables.

5. Your own organic vegetables will be much more tasty. The use of pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, hormones and antibiotics make vegetables grow unnaturally and take the taste away from them. With organic vegetables, your cooking will be enhanced as their flavour will show fully.

6. Organic farming is friendly to the environment. Because you won’t use pesticides or other equally harming products on your vegetables, you will not damage the soil or the air with the chemical components.

7. When you grow your own organic vegetables you are contributing to your own self-sustainability and the sustainability of the planet. Small communities have been founded where members exchange products that they grow naturally, thus contributing to create a friendly and better place for us all.

In the end, eating organic products only means that we do not add anything else to them than they would naturally have. As you can guess, additives, fertilizers, pesticides or hormones are not components of naturally grown food. To better care for your health, grown your own organic vegetables -and a few pots is all you need.