Archive | February 2014

9 REASONS WOMEN SHOULD NOT BE SCARED OF GAINING MUSCLE

I am a 45 year old stay at home mom of 2 and have been weight lifting and doing cardio for 8 years now and have to say that weight lifting has made a huge difference in what my body looks like and how I feel.  I have become more defined and believe it or not, I do not have the physique of a body builder even though I lift extremely heavy weight. There is such a huge misconception about women bulking up if they lift weights.  Unless you are on steroids and a bunch of supplements, it is really difficult for a woman to get that bulky look because we do not have the testosterone needed to make that happen.

Another misconception about muscle is that people think muscle weighs more than fat.  One pound of muscle weighs just the same as one pound of fat or one pound of feathers.  Muscle is more dense than fat so it takes up less space.  Who doesn’t want that. ;)

Muscle is not just aesthetically pleasing, it is EXTREMELY important for a myriad of health benefits.

Here are nine reasons women should not be afraid of gaining muscle:

1. Muscle helps you live longer! According to Tufts University, the more muscle mass you have, the greater your longevity potential. Muscle is the number one biomarker for longevity. It is a better predictor than total cholesterol or blood pressure!

2. The more muscle you have the more calories you burn at rest. It is estimated that for every pound of muscle you gain you burn an extra 50 calories a day. Add 5 pounds of muscle and you’ll burn an extra 1,750 calories a week! That’s the equivalent of going on the treadmill five times a week for 40 minutes.

3. Muscle makes life and everyday activities easier. The more muscle you have, the more strength you have. Researchers at Tufts University determined that strength is the number two predictor for longevity!

4. Muscle improves body composition. According to world renowned strength coach Charles Poliquin, for every kilo of lean muscle that was gained, there was an equal loss of weight in body fat! Look at this way, if gained 4 kg of muscle during a 12 week program, in the same 12 weeks you would drop 4 kg of fat! So if you started at 20% body fat and 60 kg of bodyweight, your body fat would now be 13%! These body composition changes will make you look absolutely amazing and feel very empowered.

5. Muscle empowers women because of the new sense of strength and power that muscle gives!

6. The more muscle you have the more insulin receptor sites you have, and the more sensitive they will be. This means it’s easier to stay leaner and keep the fat off!

7. Muscle builds stronger bones, preventing osteoporosis.

8. Muscle improves flexibility and balance.

9. Muscle can improve the postural muscles to enhance your posture.

And most importantly, muscle makes you look great naked! Want a sexier butt? Add some muscle, strip the fat and VOILA! Want your waist to look tinier? Shape your shoulders and WOW! Want to make your legs look longer? Strip some fat and add some muscle and SHAZAM!

Now that you understand why women should not be scared of gaining muscle, here is what you need to know about muscle tissue. It can do one of two things:
Grow larger and/or stronger
Shrink and/or get weaker

This entry was posted on February 26, 2014.

Alzheimer’s/dementia – type 3 diabetes?

 

Most Americans consume gluten through wheat, but it is found in rye, barley, spelt, kamut, and bulgur and is one of the most common food additives in the world.  It is also used in processed foods and personal care products.  It is sometimes present in oats. Pure oatmeal does not contain gluten. However, most oatmeal brands on the market today are not pure — they contain oats that have been cross-contaminated with a tiny bit of wheat, barley and/or rye. Since those grains do have gluten in them, that cross-contamination makes most oatmeal brands unsafe on the gluten-free diet.  Be sure to find oats that say gluten-free.

Gluten is made of two groups of proteins, the glutenins and the gliadins.  There are 12 different smaller units that make up gliadin.  A person could be sensitive to either of the protein groups or any of the smaller units.  Sensitivity leads to inflammation.  Gluten sensitivity does not mean that you have Celiac disease. Celiac disease is what happens when an allergic reaction to gluten causes damage specifically to the small intestine.  Gluten sensitivity can involve any organ in the body including the brain.

Inflammation is the cornerstone of many brain disorders which can be initiated when the immune system reacts to a substance in a person’s body. When antibodies (also known as immunoglobulin, is a large Y-shape protein produced by B cells that is used by the immune system to identify and neutralize foreign objects such as bacteria and viruses) of the immune system come in contact with a protein or antigen (foreign object) to which a person is allergic, the inflammatory cascade is provoked.  This releases a whole host of damaging chemicals known as cytokines.

Cytokines are highly antagonistic to the brain, damaging tissue and leaving the brain vulnerable to dysfunction and disease especially if the assault continues.  Elevated cytokines are seen in Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and even autism.

So why is gluten all of sudden so bad?  The grains we eat today bear little resemblance to the grains that entered our diet 10,000 years ago. In the 17th century, studies were being done of crossing different plants to arrive at new varieties.  Our genetic makeup and physiology haven’t changed much since the time of our ancestors, our food chain has had a rapid makeover during the past 50 years.  Modern food manufacturing, including bio-engineering and specifically hybridization, have allowed us to grow structurally-modified grains that contain gluten that is less tolerable than the gluten that’s found in grains cultivated just a few decades ago.

We can be gluten sensitive and not even know it.  There are tests that can be done to detect whether or not you are sensitive.  Today’s American food pyramid pushes for a high carbohydrate, low fat diet. This pyramid needs to be turned upside down. It’s no wonder why there is so much sickness and disease in the world.  Our bodies do not need that many carbs, they need protein and our brain needs fat. Our brains love fat.  When we eat too many carbs, we eat less fat.

The best fats to look for:

Oils:

Coconut oil, olive oil, avocado oil, flaxseed oil, nut oils (walnut, pecan, macadamia).

Stick with the oils above for your cooking and salads and you won’t go wrong.

-For cooking, coconut oil is king! It has a high burn temperature and is extremely healthy.

-For salads, olive oil and avocado oil are kings. Be generous while you drizzle.

Nuts & Seeds:

Healthy nuts like pecans, walnuts and macadamia nuts have good levels of omega-3. These make great snacks. Move over chips!

FYI: Peanuts are not nuts.  They are legumes and should be avoided for these reasons:

1. Low in nutritional value

2. They contain phytates- for the most part – just prevent minerals in a particular food from being absorbed and also inhibit the functioning of certain enzymes that are critical to digestion

3. They contain lectins- The 2 main effects of lectins are that they cause “Leaky Gut” and they lead to increased inflammation in your gut. Both of these things may not cause any immediate problems when you eat lectins, but they often lead long-term to all sorts of problems.

4. They are high in protease inhibitors – your body starts producing too much of certain enzymes. When this happens, it can lead to all sorts of problems like Leaky Gut, chronic inflammation, and allergic reactions.

Soy is particularly bad about this, but most legumes are quite high in protease inhibitors.

5. Have Carbs and Can Stall Weight Loss

6. Contains phytoestrogens – Phytoestrogens are not actually estrogen, but they act like estrogen. Inside your body, phytoestrogens bind to the same receptors that estrogen binds to, but phytoestrogens give a much weaker signal than estrogen. Because the signals are weak, your body will often over-produce estrogen, which will disrupt your entire hormonal system.

What are bad fats? Anything high in omega-6 fatty acids, polyunsaturated fats, or anything that was man-made.

-Avoid the following fats:
Margarine, man-made oils (hydrogenated & partially hydrogenated oils), canola oil, corn oil, vegetable oil, soybean oil, grape seed oil, safflower oil, peanut oil, and sunflower oil.

Signs of gluten sensitivity:

ADHD, depression, anxiety, brain fog, dairy intolerance, heart disease, IBS, hives, migraines, sugar cravings, cancer, infertility, autism, neurological disorders, autoimmune disorders, and the list goes on.

Please consider removing gluten from your diet.  Research shows that many ailments can be reversed when eliminating gluten from your diet. Following a Paleo/primal lifestyle is one way, but just avoiding gluten all together is an important step in the right direction.

This is just a brief overview of how gluten can affect your body.  To get more in depth information, please read Dr. Perlmutter’s book Grain Brain.



This entry was posted on February 22, 2014.

5 Must Have Household Ingredients

I’m so excited to share this post with you as it is my very first one. (I had another blog, but wasn’t happy with it as it was a free one and your options were limited and wasn’t very pretty. It’s very true what they say, “You get what you pay for.”) There were so many topics to choose from for my first post, but thought this would be a great one that covers all areas of a healthy lifestyle which is of utmost importance to me. To me a healthy lifestyle consists of eating right, daily exercise, and using all natural products…meaning no chemicals or added ingredients that you wouldn’t ingest. Usually products that only consist of one to two ingredients.  The less the better.

What we put on our body is just as important as what we put in our body.  Our skin is the largest organ of the body.

Did you know….

1.  Our skin absorbs 60% of what touches it. Many products such as shampoo, lotions, medications, and perfume go from the skin to the bloodstream and delivered to all body parts.

2.  We absorb more through our skin than through ingesting.

3.  Our skin is a reflection of our insides. Our hydration and nourishment are key to radiating skin.

 

Photo: These are just a few natural products to get you started for a more healthy lifestyle. They can be used for health, home, and body. The good thing about these is that they are very economical for those who are on a tight budget.

It doesn’t get any easier than this.  5 simple ingredients that are natural and very economical for those who are on a budget.  These ingredients can be used to better your health, for making your home a more healthier place, and to help take care of your body.

Here is the list of ingredients and a few ways how they can help you on your healthful lifestyle journey.

1. White vinegar is the most versatile and economical product out there.  It is typically used in making salad dressings and sauces.  Another great use is making an all natural household cleaner that acts as a disinfectant and deodorizer.  It cleans much like an all purpose cleaner. Just mix a solution of equal parts of water and vinegar in a spray bottle and you have a solution that will clean most areas of your home.

2.  Epsom salt is not actually salt but a naturally occurring pure mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate. It is most commonly used in baths for its magical benefits of easing stress and relaxing the body, relieving pain and muscle cramps, and eliminating toxins from the body.  One cup in a hot bath is ideal.

3.  Baking soda is used for many things and is another inexpensive product.  It acts as a leavening agent in baking….makes all those tiny bubbles.  It also acts as a gentle abrasive cleaner.  It can also be used in place of toothpaste as well as a freshener— Refresh stinky sneakers: sprinkle baking soda inside the shoes to soak up sweat and odors.  Put an opened box in the fridge to eliminate odors.

4.  Organic coconut oil is not an inexpensive product, but is worth it’s weight in gold.  It can be used for cooking especially to replace any cooking oil and for wonderful beauty products.  It has anti-viral, anti-fungal, and anti-bacterial properties as well.  Great for oil pulling and using plain as a body lotion or removing make up. It is a solid oil, but will soften in a warm setting.

5.  Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) is an awesome product for balancing the ph in your body and skin.  It is great for detoxing your body. It is very potent and should always be diluted with water. ACV also works great for heartburn. Only organic will do that has the ‘mother’ included.

I hope you enjoyed my first blog post and gained some useful information. I will be covering more detailed information on these subjects in the days to come.


This entry was posted on February 9, 2014.