Saturday, December 1, 2007

The Many Benefits of Weight Lifting

Most people, especially women, discard weight lifting as a good form of exercise because they think that weight lifting will actually make their bodies look like a man. If you are one of those people, then you might be surprised to know that this is not true. The hormones of man and woman are not the same. The hormone testosterone plays a major role in muscular development. Because women have very little of this hormone, they tend not to "bulk-up" with weight training.

Researches also demonstrate that resistance exercise, also called strength training, like weight training and weight lifting, has profound effects on the musculoskeletal system, contributes to the maintenance of functional abilities, and prevents osteoporosis, sarcopenia (loss of body mass), lower-back pain, and other disabilities.

Weight lifting also contributes to muscle conditioning. Muscle conditioning is important for the overall stability and strength of the body. It is beneficial until the end of life if well maintained. Muscle conditioning is good for the bones because bones grow stronger and denser with stresses put on the muscles around them.

Moreover, weight lifting makes the muscles, connective tissues and tendons stronger. The way you sit and stand are influenced by the health of a network of neck, shoulder, back, hip and abdominal muscles. Stronger muscles can help you stand and sit straighter and more comfortably. You may notice improved balance and stability.

As you begin to notice the positive physical changes in your body and develop a regular exercise routine, your ability to handle stress effectively will improve. Weight training allows you to sleep better, i.e., fall asleep quicker and sleep deeper. Clinical studies have shown regular exercise to be one of the three best tools for effective stress management. Weight lifting, like most forms of exercise also raises metabolism thus causing the body to burn more calories. This helps in the maintenance of our desirable weight. Boosted metabolism means burning more calories when at rest with reduced body fat. Your overall weight may not change, but you will gain muscle and lose fat. Over time you should notice decreases in waist measurements and body fat measurement. Remember the adage “something is better than nothing.” Start improving your health. A little start like lifting those grocery bags and rocking your baby to sleep may mean a decrease on your risk of muscle loss on later years.

Do Men Burn More Fat than Women

Men and women are not built the same way. There is something different in our bodies due to the way hormones change the balance between muscle and fat and shape the size of our bones to respond to different needs later on. In men, the testosterone hormone determines the size of bones causes hair growth and deepens the voice. It also regulates the size of the muscle mass, which it turn regulates the metabolism. The more muscle mass, the faster a person burns the calories obtained from food, which is one of the big differences between men and women and between overweight people and those who are fit.

It’s an easily recognizable fact that men and women training side by side do not have the same results. Recent studies have found that women gain weight faster than men and that they have a harder time getting rid of it through exercise. It seems that women have the misfortune of being stuck with the worst part of the weight loss process and also with having to work twice as hard as men to stay in shape. And since this is no easy task for men, you can imagine how bad the ladies have it.

The Many Benefits of Walking

You probably always hear the expression ‘take a hike!’ You know what? Health experts are actually encouraging you to follow that particular advice.

Walking, or the art of traveling by foot, is human’s natural means of transportation. However, with today’s society full of vehicles, walking is slowly becoming a lost art. And this should not be, health experts said, as walking has numerous benefits to us. Here are some that we have compiled just for you.

Health Benefits

Walking is a cardio vascular workout that can help reduce your risk of heart disease; aids in alleviation of depression and lower back pain; increase your muscular strength; improve coronary condition; reduce risks of infection and hypertension; aids in maintaining a healthy weight; and curbs the decrease in bone density. Likewise, it also helps in maintaining flexibility and coordination hence, reducing the risk of falls. Like almost all forms of exercise, it adds more health and zest to your life.

Social and Economic Benefits

Aside from the obvious health benefits, walking can also have a very large social and economic impact in today’s society. Walking is free. In comparison to the cost of operating a car, which is approximately 5,170 dollars a year, walking will not cost you anything. In addition to this, walking will also give you more time to interact with others. Walking has been shown to improve self-esteem, relieve symptoms of depression and anxiety, and improve mood. Walking, particularly in pleasant surroundings, and with other people,
offers many opportunities for relaxation and social contact.

Environmental Benefits

Moreover, walking is the only form of transportation that will not contribute to air pollution. Motor vehicle emissions represent 31% of total carbon dioxide, 81% of carbon monoxide, and 49% of nitrogen oxides released in the United States alone, and thus create 60 percent of air pollution. Although individual cars are much cleaner today than they were in earlier years, if total traffic continues to grow, overall air quality will deteriorate. Moreover, cars and trucks burn millions of barrels of oil, a non-renewable energy source, every day.

Transportation Benefits

Walking will not contribute to traffic and requires less space than automobiles. Moreover, it reduces the risk of vehicular accidents on the road. Walking can help to reduce roadway congestion. Many streets and highways carry more traffic than they were designed to handle, resulting in wasted time and energy, pollution, driver frustration, and gridlock.

So do not discount walking. It can actually do you good!

The Many Benefits of Exercise

Health experts encourage us to include exercise as a necessary part of our daily routine to promote our general well- being. Together with healthy and balanced diet, adequate rest and relaxation, exercise is recommended to promote optimal health. People who are usually inactive can improve their health and well-being by becoming even moderately active on a regular basis. Physical activity need not be strenuous to achieve significant health benefits.

Greater health benefits can be achieved by increasing the amount (duration, frequency, or intensity) of physical activity. There are many benefits of exercise, not only as an aid in effective fat weight loss, but also in reducing our risks of developing or dying from some of the leading causes of illness and death. Here is a general overview of what exercise can do for us.

1. Exercise reduces our risks of dying prematurely.

2. Exercise reduces our risks of dying from heart diseases, cancers (including uterine, colon, and breast), stroke, diabetes and arthritis.

3. Help us lose weight, especially fat weight by decreasing our Body Mass Index (BMI), reducing our total cholesterol and reducing the circulating levels of triglycerides in our blood and increasing our metabolic rate. Perhaps this is why active people can "Eat anything and not gain weight." and why other folks "Gain weight just by looking at food."!

4. Exercise improves the functioning of our Immune System as well as blood and oxygen circulation for our vital organs.

5. Exercise increases our insulin sensitivity to prevent against type 2 diabetes.

6. Exercise increases our energy and endurance level.

7. Exercise slows down aging by improving our physical, mental, emotional and psychological well- being.

8. Exercise reduces our risk of developing many bones and joints diseases or disorders.

9. Exercise even helps in enhancing creativity and imagination. It is also linked with improved mental vigor, including reaction time, acuity, and math skills.

10. Exercise helps in providing physical and mental rejuvenation, making us feel good about ourselves and thus improve our esteem and confidence.

11. Exercising improves mood and due to the chemicals it releases in the brain called endorphins, it gives you an overall feeling of well-being. This is the same chemical that being in love or eating chocolate induces!

12. Exercise will help you sleep better. Just be sure not to exercise too close to your bedtime if you exercise at night, because it may keep you awake. If you need to exercise within a few hours of going to bed, make sure it's only a brisk walk. Experts say you should allow yourself about three hours between exercise and going to bed.

So get off that couch and start moving. Remember, the time and effort that you put in exercising today may spell your health and well- being tomorrow. Take our word for it! #

Basic Work Out

Often, a simple work out can make you feel good in a small amount of time. You can squeeze in these moves during lunch break, or even right before an upcoming date. The best part is, these exercises aren’t too demanding, so there will be minimal perspiration involved. Keep in mind that these routines are not meant for advanced trainers looking for serious muscle growth. They are designed to maintain a healthy and good-looking physique within approximately an hour. Make sure that you have a healthy snack at least one hour before the workout, and a full meal afterwards.

Cardiovascular and Lower Body

Your cardiovascular work out should consist of a half-hour daily walk. Simply lace up your quality walking shoes and go for a stroll around the block. Go out regardless of the weather; just make sure to dress adequately. An effective alternative to going outside is walking up and down a building staircase. This option is excellent for your heart, as well as maintaining leg muscles. To maintain a constant progression, try to increase your pace on a weekly basis. Set goals and gradually increase your distances. If possible, alter your cardiovascular sessions for an even more effective work out: use the staircase one day, and walk around the block on other days.

Upper Body
After your cardiovascular exercises, begin your upper body work out with a few exercises. Do these steps three times a week for better results.

Basic Pushups

Basic pushups will work your chest area, triceps and rear deltoids. Aim for 3 sets of 10 to 15 repetitions (depending on your fitness level), and gradually increase the repetitions as the movement becomes easier. Once the movement becomes too easy, you can increase the workout by elevating your feet on a chair to increase resistance. Lay face down on the floor with your legs extended behind you and your hands directly beneath your shoulders. Your fingertips should be pointed straight ahead, and make sure you keep your back flat and your head in natural alignment with your spine. Get into the starting position by extending your arms straight from your shoulders, which lifts your entire body off the floor. While keeping your body stable, go down until your nose almost touches the floor. Exhale as you push back to the starting position with your chest and triceps. Try not to lock your elbows in order to keep constant tension on your muscles.

Close-Grip Pushups

Close-grip pushups mostly work the tricep muscles, the inner chest and the trunk muscles. Once again, carry out 3 sets of 10 to 15 repetitions (according to your fitness level), and gradually increase the repetitions as the movement becomes easier. • Use the same starting position and breathing pattern as the basic pushup. Bring your hands together and form a triangle with your index fingers and thumbs. As you go down to the floor, your elbows should go to the side, which incidentally puts more stress on your triceps and inner chest. Close-grip pushups also require more balance. By stabilizing your body, your trunk muscles will work throughout the entire movement. At first, close-grip pushups might strain your wrists, so make sure you stretch appropriately and start off slowly.

Wide-Grip Pushups

Wide-grip pushups will work your chest, rear shoulders and parts of your back muscles. Carry out the same sets and reps as aforementioned and gradually increase the reps as the movement becomes easier. Use the same starting position and breathing pattern as the basic pushup. Your hands should be positioned beyond shoulder width, with your fingers pointing frontward. The wider position emphasizes the tension on your shoulders and lengthens your pectorals. Wide-grip pushups are more demanding, so you will tire more quickly than with other pushups. The above pushup variations will help keep your upper body muscles strong and fit. For additional exercises, try these simple moves. All you require are either 8 or 15 kg dumbbells, or a few minutes.


These repetitions will build up muscles in the thigh and buttocks. First, spread your legs to hip length and keep your legs fully extended. Holding dumbbells in each hand and maintaining a straight back, slowly bend your knees until your thighs are level to the floor. Then, slowly return to your original position. Continue this exercise until you tire your legs to failure.


In order to work out the pectorals, lie on a bed (stomach up) and hold a weight in each hand above your chest. Keep your arms fully extended with the palms facing each other. Next, lower the dumbbells outwards and down until parallel with your shoulders. Breathe out, and return the weights to starting position. Aim for eight sets of 8 to 12 repetitions.


These exercises will strengthen your biceps. Sit on the edge of a secure chair with your feet placed hip width apart. Hold the weights with palms facing inwards in front of your body. Extend your arm, and curl one dumbbell up at a time in a small arc towards your shoulder. Be sure to rotate your forearm so your palm faces your shoulder at the top of the movement. Aim for three sets of 8 to 12 repetitions.

Top 10 fitness mistakes

Nearly every guy or gal who’s tried dieting or fitness has dropped out of a program at least once. Such is life. Work and social events tend to get in the way, lack of adequate emotional support saps the willpower and boredom sets in. Eating the same kind of foods every day is boring. Suiting up at the gym only to go through the same motions is also boring. But this kind of mood can be avoided with a bit of planning and a positive attitude. Here’s a list of the most common mistakes people do when trying to get fit.

The number one mistake has to be the failure to plan ahead. Going to the gym with a vague target in mind is the best way to fail. If your target is unclear, how can you know if you’ve reached it or not? If you’re a little vague on the details, maybe you need help. Ask a doctor what’s your ideal weight and make that your goal. Or focus on the number of inches you want to drop off your stomach, bottom and thighs. That works great, too.

Coming up with excuses to avoid going to the gym is second on thilist. Yes, life tends to get in the way, but that can be arranged with some more planning. Don’t quit the program just because something came up at the last moment. Reschedule your gym session and make sure you don’t get lazy.

Don’t work out too little. This may seem too obvious to belong here, but a lot of people lift two dumbbells a couple of times and think they’re done for the day. Sit down at the table for half an hour and come up with a sound training program. If you don’t know enough to make your own program ask a gym trainer or a veteran bodybuilder to help you. People are usually quite happy to show off their knowledge.

Too much fitness is also bad. Muscles need time to grow and the body needs time to burn fat. Some people think that the body only burns up fat during exercises, but this is not true. The more muscles mass you have, the faster calories get burnt because muscles need energy for maintenance all the time, even when you’re resting. Overtraining will simply make you tired without any additional benefits.

Never compare yourself to others. We are all unique individuals with unique genetic make-ups governing our weight gain, weight loss and response to training. You shouldn’t rate your performance according to the achievements of others, but stick to your own pace and your own goal. If you’re trying too hard too soon, you’re simply asking to fail. Don’t do the same things over and over. There’s no better way to lose motivation that doing the same exercises in the same order over and over again.

Learn to juggle around with the exercises that form your routine and replace them with new ones every now and then. Find variations on a classic exercise and try them out. Make things interesting for yourself

Don’t stroll into the bar straight from the gym and keep alcohol consumption on a tight leash. Alcohol has extra calories that you don’t want and is also metabolized as fat and very fast. Pumping iron in the gym for 45 minutes and then throwing the entire effort away with a couple of beers is not a good way to move forward.

Keep a close eye on your meals. Drop the fast food and snacks from your daily eating plan and forget about soft drinks. At the same time avoid starving yourself. This is a huge mistake and a lot of people do it. Never assume that you can tank your way through a fitness program while starving yourself because you’ll only end up in a hospital. Muscles need nourishing meals in order to grow and starvation is a bad way to diet anyway. And, lastly, never look for a magic fix that can save you all the trouble. You can’t lose weight sitting around and moping in front of the TV or computer. It just doesn’t happen. So get out and go to that gym because it’s good for you. And no excuses!

Burning Fat

In general, people will practice cardiovascular activities and forget about weight bearing exercises when it comes to burning fat. Many trainers will say that aerobic exercises burn off fat and weightlifting is only used to build muscle bulk. This statement is not entirely correct because the more muscle mass one acquires through weight bearing exercises, the more he will burn fat calories...even at rest. We see a growing trend from cardiovascular training towards weight and strength training.

According to a study by the Fitness Products Council and Sporting Goods Manufacturers, the number of people lifting free weights has increased 76 percent in the past decade. Right now, weight lifting is among the most popular sports in North America. This change is for the best because cardiovascular activity combined with weight training will result in much more effective fat loss. Cardiovascular exercises will raise muscle metabolism during the activity and for a short time after the exercise session.
Weight lifting exercises, on the other hand, will raise your muscle metabolism during the exercise session, and for a long time after the exercise session. Some high intensity trainers have even seen their metabolism rise for several days following their training session.

Performing adequate weight training exercises should limit your repetitions anywhere from 1 to 20 (more or less). Such resistance on muscles will make their tissue leaner and stronger. The muscle development will take place during the rest period following the resistance training. Therefore sufficient rest periods are essential.

Whether your goal is to tone or build muscles, it is important to know what happens during the muscle training process. When lifting weights, muscle tissues are torn apart (at the microscopic level) from the stress, and it's in the recuperation period that your muscles become stronger and therefore able to support the extra stress. Usually the recuperation period required is 24 to 48 hours after the weight lifting activity. During the recuperation period, the muscle metabolism is still burning energy, and that's when it's time to perform cardiovascular activities. Carrying out high repetitions of the same movement will tire the body on a different basis. Combining low repetition exercises (weight lifting) with high repetition cardiovascular exercise will stress muscles in a complementary way to increase the total fat burning effect.

Anybody who debates the fact that weight bearing exercises don't help people lose weight and fat should lift weights for one hour and see their heart rate go through the roof. Simply look at athletes who specialize in short, intense bursts of energy and you still see that they are very low in body fat.

The point is to combine a weight lifting routine with a good cardiovascular workout to increase muscle metabolism and total fat burning ratio.

An important factor to consider when trying to lose weight is that lots of muscle mass can be lost as a result. As muscle mass will keep your metabolism high, try to avoid quick weight loss through miracle diets or starvation. This weight loss will be regained just as quickly. Instead, opt for a gradual fat loss routine by combining weight training, cardiovascular activities and a diet supplement, and allow muscle mass to build up and increase your metabolism. Results may take a little longer, but they will last for a longer period of time.

Overcoming Weight Loss Excuses

We often make excuses when it comes to losing weight. Because of this, we stop ourselves from doing our diet routine, gain more weight and get disappointed in the end. How do you stop making those weight loss excuses?

You make many weight loss excuses and it automatically comes in without realizing it. Losing weight is not that easy but you have to discipline yourself. Next time, ask yourself why you make excuses every time you commit it.

Some of the most common excuses include:

• No time to do any exercise.
• No time to prepare healthy meals.
• Too old to exercise.
• No enough support
• Not feeling well.
• Bored with exercising.

The excuses mentioned above are just a few. You might have noticed that some are just lame excuses. So how do you stop making those weight loss excuses?

Find out why you are making excuses. Are they acceptable? Or you are just thinking of another better way? If not, then why are you not taking some action?

There are some who didn’t like being overweight yet they’re doing nothing about it because they are afraid that they might fail and end up still overweight. Don’t be afraid of change…

The way you think will affect how you succeed with your weight loss routine. The more negative you think, the more excuses you’ll commit and fail. Don’t let your low selfesteem win over you. Strive harder for something that is important to you.

Lack of time with exercises is the one of the most common used excuses because we are too occupied with other things. Lack of time is not a valid excuse because if we think that losing weight is really important for us, we need to find time to for it no matter how busy we are. Do as much as you can each day and you’ll feel more energetic.

In order overcome weight loss excuses, know you need to understand the reason why you’re making an excuse and think its importance to you. Discipline yourself; strive for a happy and healthy you.

If you’re having difficulties in losing weight alone, join support groups where you can meet people who can make your weight loss routine successful. Clinically proven products are also available to help you in your weight loss problems, such as Proactol™, a new clinically proven fat binder. It is made of non-soluble and soluble fibers, immediately attaches to fats found floating on the surface of the stomach. This creates a fat-fiber complex that is too large to be absorbed in the small intestine, allowing the fat to pass naturally through the body.

Diet and Sleep

The food you eat not only contributes to the quality of your weight and general health, but also on how well you sleep. Some foods help you sleep better, while others can make sleep difficult or even impossible.

Foods that improve sleep include fruits, green leafy vegetables, whole grain breads and cereals, and mushrooms. Even spices such as dill, sage and basil help with sleep problems.

Drinking milk before bedtime, a common method to aid sleep, is actually effective. Milk actually contains tryptophan, which can be converted to serotonin, the hormone that controls sleep. Honey, turkey, egg whites and tuna also contain tryptophan, which are good night time snacks.

Alternatively, caffeine-rich food and beverages should be avoided right before going to bed. This includes coffee, tea, chocolate, cocoa, soft drinks and some medications. Some foods that are rich in tyramine can also affect sleep. Tyramine actually causes the release of a substance that stimulates the brain keeping you awake. This is found in bacon, cheese, sugar, ham or tomatoes.

Spicy foods, on the other hand, may cause gastrointestinal reflux or heartburn. While sweet or greasy foods can also cause indigestion and bloating. And though alcohol can make you sleepy, it actually upsets sleep patterns later in the night resulting to frequent waking in the night to urinate.

Even how much and when you eat can affect sleep patterns. It is best to keep the last meal of the day light. Eating too much or heavy meals before sleeping may cause indigestion, heartburn and discomfort. It is recommended to start with a hearty breakfast, the main meal of the day around noon, and a light supper early in the evening. You may also take vitamins and supplements to aid sleep. Calcium and magnesium helps induce sleep. Calcium-rich foods include milk, cheese, yogurt, ice cream, sardines, salmon, broccoli, tofu, egg, and calcium-fortified food. Magnesium is found in nuts, almonds, cashews, beans, and spinach. Vitamins B6 and B12 are often beneficial and used in the treatment of insomnia. Some of the foods that contain Vitamin B6 are liver, meat, brown rice, fish, butter, wheat germ, whole grain cereals, and soybeans. Foods rich in Vitamin B12 include some plant milks, some soy products and some breakfast cereals. Be careful on what foods you eat. It can directly affect the way you sleep.
By improvig your eating habits, you will have a better chance at a good night’s sleep.

Lose Weight by Sleeping?

Do you feel that you need to lose weight? Well then don’t just count calories. You might want to count sheep as well.

Recent studies have shown that sleep deprivation disrupts a series of metabolism and hormonal processes. It causes increased hunger and affects the body’s metabolism making it difficult to lose and control weight.

Lack of sleep causes a hormone called cortisol, which controls the appetite, to take excess calories and store them as excess body fat. In addition, sleep loss interferes with carbohydrate metabolism which may cause high blood glucose levels. The excess amount of glucose encourages the overproduction of insulin, which may lead to diabetes or even obesity.

Furthermore, sleep deprivation can promote weight gain by affecting our behavior. People who lack sleep tended to crave sweets or high carbohydrate, high fat food with low nutrient value. They tend to snack on chips, cakes, pastries, burgers, fries, soft drinks, etc. Though the short-term rise in blood sugar, brought on by these snacks, gives a surge of energy, the extra calories are not needed by the body and must be stored as body fat.

These calories are not so easily shed than taken. When they are sleep deprived, people are often too tired to exercise or they work out less intensely than usual. They commonly feel exhausted and lack the energy and motivation to do even simple exercises. They would rather go to sleep, or eat, than do something physical. In time the calories that are gained and not easily burned are deposited in the body as fat.

Some people may require less hours of sleep to be in top condition during the day; while others need more than 10 hours. But experts agree that most people need at least eight hours of sleep each night to give themselves enough energy to exercise, eat right and keep off those unwanted pounds. Yet, according to a poll sponsored by the National Sleep Foundation, only 30 percent of adults get eight or more hours of sleep on weeknights; while 52 percent do on weekends. A third of adults reportedly sleep no more than six-and-a-half hours nightly!

In fact, disruption in the sleeping patterns in the United States and in the industrialized world is thought as one of the main reasons that people are getting overweight. People should start making behavioral and lifestyle changes now for a better, healthier tomorrow.

Dieting Myths Revealed

1. Cutting fat from your diet will ensure weight-loss


It’s true that eating nutritious foods such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and skimmilk may provide more fill with less calories, but low in fat does not necessarily mean low in calories. Many desserts such as non-fat ice cream and other low in fat desserts contain great quantities of calories. Also, foods that are high in carbohydrates such as bread and pasta can also attribute to weight-gain when eaten in large amounts. It is important to consider portion size as well as calorie content when attempting to lose weight.

2. Extra protein will promote muscle growth


Although proteins are important in the building and maintaining of muscles, excess amounts of proteins are stored as fat, just as excess carbohydrates or fats are. Basically, any calorie-containing nutrient will be stored as fatty deposits if too much is eaten. In order to build muscles, strength training and sufficient amounts of calories and proteins are the best method.

3. Walking is a great way to lose weight


Like any other physical activity, walking burns calories and can help weight loss. The best way is to take a brisk walk (rather than a stroll), and the longer the walk, the more calories you lose. Every mile of walking burns approximately 100 calories. About 5 miles of walking every day will amount to the loss of one pound in a week.

4. You can eat eggs without getting fat

Research proves that the major dietary culprit is high saturated-fat intake. Since eggs are low in saturated fat as well as in calories (approximately 75 calories if hard-boiled) they are not as unhealthy as some may think. They also contain many various essential nutrients. The American Heart Association recommends one egg per day. However, the key to a good diet is to eat a variety of healthy foods and to use light oil rather than butter or margarine when cooking eggs.

Adopting a healthy lifestyle is an important first step in dieting. Keep in mind the following tips, and you’ll be on the right track to healthy and effective weight loss. Start first by getting rid of all the junk food in your place, and replace them with more nutritious snacks such as fruits, vegetables and nuts. Then make sure to increase your level of activity each day. For example, you can park your car at the end of the lot and walk an extra hundred meters to the entrance of the mall. Or take the stairs instead of the escalator. Small steps such as these will add up to pounds shed.

Quit smoking, gambling, binge drinking, and any other addictive behavior. Then start following a meal plan for the whole week and stick to it. Include some of your favorites in your meals such as pasta and steak, but keep a watchful eye on the portions. And most importantly, drink plenty of water each day.

This helps to regulate your metabolism and strengthens your immune system, in addition to satisfying your appetite. When you drink more water, you will feel less hungry. These steps may seem tedious at first, but maintaining routines such as the ones above will be integrated into your daily life in no time.

Lunch Ideas

If you are a working person, you know how important lunch is. You can't function without a good lunch. A good lunch is the difference between feeling great during the afternoon and feeling worn out. Many times we skip on lunch. We don't either eat the right things, or don't eat at all.

I know several people who don't eat any lunch at all. I'm the type of person who can't skip a meal. Maybe one of the reasons is that I can't turn down a good meal. Though, if I don't eat, I can feel it. Nothing will make you feel bad quicker than skipping a meal. We all know what it feels like.

What do you do? You don't have time to fix a good lunch before you go to work. Or do you? Of course you do. If you are in a relationship, you have more than enough time. One thing I would suggest is that you alternate fixing each others lunch.

One day you fix both of your lunches, while the next day have her fix both of them. This will give you time to do the other things that you need to do.

You can also fix your lunch before you go to bed at night. By doing this, you don't have to rush yourself, which will make your day that much better. I hate having to rush in the morning. What kinds of things should you fix? Here we will go into some simple things to fix.

Tuna and Bell Pepper Pocket

3 (6-ounce) cans drained, solid white tuna (in water) ½ cup chopped bell peppers ¼ cup chopped celery ¼ cup sliced onions 8-12 lettuce leaves (preferably green) 2 medium-size sliced tomatoes (8-12 slices total) 3 tbsp. fat-free Italian dressing 1 tbsp. dried oregano 1 tbsp. black pepper 4 (6-inch) pita breads Combine tuna, green peppers, celery and onions in a bowl. In another bowl, combine dressing, black pepper and oregano, pour it over the tuna mix and stir. Refrigerate for a few hours. When serving, put 2-3 tomato slices and 2- 3 lettuce leaves in each pita bread. Add tuna mix to pitas. There's enough for 4 servings.

Black Bean Salad

½ (8-ounce) can drained black beans 1 (15-ounce) can drained whole kernel corn 4 chopped green onions ½ chopped green bell pepper 3 diced tomatoes ½ avocado peeled, pitted and diced ½ (2-ounce) jar pimentos 2 tbsp. lemon juice 3 ounces fat-free Italian salad dressing ¼ tsp. garlic salt Combine Italian dressing, black beans, green onions, corn, bell pepper, avocado, pimento, tomatoes, and lemon juice in a bowl. Add and toss pepper, salt and garlic. Store in Tupperware and refrigerate.

Smoked Chicken Sandwich

½ (8-ounce) loaf sourdough bread ¼ tbsp. vinegar 2 tbsp. chopped parsley 1/8 cup lowfat mayonnaise or fat-free salad dressing ¼ cup chopped bell peppers (you can't go wrong with bell peppers) ½ small onion thinly sliced ½ medium sized tomato sliced 8 (1-ounce) slices low-fat mozzarella cheese 2 cloves minced garlic 8 (1-ounce) slices lean chicken 1 tbsp. black pepper Slice the loaf of bread horizontally. Remove some soft bread from inside each half. Stir mayonnaise and vinegar together. Add parsley, bell peppers, black peppers, and garlic to the mix.

Let stand for 15 minutes. Layer the bottom of the loaf with 4 slices of chicken and cheese, then layer with half of the onions and half of the tomatoes. Spread half of the mayonnaise concoction and repeat the entire process from the start with the remaining ingredients.

Close the sandwich with the second bread shell and chill until it's ready to serve. When serving, cut loaf into 3 wedges (secure loaf with wooden sticks for a better cut). This makes 3 servings. Now you have some easy lunch ideas!

Breakfast Ideas

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. I'm sure that you heard that all the time when you were a kid. But, it is true. Breakfast is one of those meals that people today tend to skip. I really don't understand this. Maybe this is why people are so uptight in the morning. They have the shakes from not eating. You might have a busy lifestyle, but you need to make sure that you have time for breakfast. Breakfast is one of those meals that you must eat. I don't think there is any choice about it. I know that most people who do eat breakfast, tend to be the type that run out of the house with a donut in their hand. This really isn't a good idea.

I don't know why people jump to the sugary breakfast foods. I guess it is why people drink coffee. They need that bolt of energy to wake them up. Or they think that maybe they can avoid eating a good meal by eating something full of sugar. After all, they feel energetic after eating a bunch of sugar.

Have you ever noticed how hard it is to wake up at work? Have you noticed how during the day you get tired? This is because you aren't getting the right foods for breakfast. You don't realize how important this meal is. Every day you should have a good meal for breakfast?

What are some good things to eat for breakfast? First, let's start off with what you shouldn't eat. Don't eat donuts. For the reasons we spoke above. Don't eat any cereals that are loaded with sugar. This is nothing more than empty calories. They don't offer you anything. Not only that, but too much of this and you will gain weight. Have you ever noticed how sluggish you feel before lunch? This is because you are eating too much sugar!

Don't eat a ton of fried foods. Don't eat a bunch of bacon, fried eggs, and French toast. The added fat will weigh you down.

Don't eat those pasties that come in the boxes. These are loaded with sugar. They don't offer you anything that is actually good for you. They rob you of all the things that you should be eating.

Don't load up on coffee. Don't think because coffee can give you energy, that you can drink it instead of eating. Now, what you should be eating.

Eat a cereal that is low in sugar. Cereal with milk is a great breakfast. It is a good all around meal.

Try a new egg sandwich. People seem to love the egg sandwiches at fast food restaurants.

Why not make one at home? You can put some cheese or some lean ham on yours. Use your imagination, these are fun to make.

Eggs are good for breakfast. I'm not going to go through the whole mess about how they say eggs re bad for you. Don't buy it. Eat them, but eat them in moderation. Pancakes can be ok from time to time.

Try to get yourself one of those griddles that you don't need to add fat too. If you get one of those, you will be able to eat these more often.

Instead of using butter and syrup, put fresh fruit on yours. I love eating mine with fresh fruit on top of them.

Juice is great for breakfast. Get that pick me up that you need without the caffeine of morning coffee. You don't have to worry about getting the shakes if you drink too much juice. Though, you might get the shits, but not the shakes.

Old fashioned toast. This is still a great thing to eat. Just don't load it up with too much butter or other things.

I know that most of you probably hated oatmeal when you were a kid. But, this is some great stuff. Add some milk and a bit of sugar and you have a breakfast that will stick to your ribs.

Fruit salad can be great for breakfast. I love things that taste refreshing that don't take all day long to make. Throw your favorite fruits together and call it a meal! There you go. A good breakfast isn't as hard as you might think that it is. All you have to do is stay away from the drive through window and you will be fine.

Healthy Snacks

No matter if it is while we are watching television or a quick bite to and from picking the kids up at school, we all love snacks. We can't get away from that fact. So why fight it? Our whole life we have been told that snacking is bad for us. It will ruin our apatite, and it will make us fat, it will break us out in pimples. Some of it is true, while on the other hand, it is nothing more than fiction. Snacking performs a very important role in our lives. Some times we snack because we are bored. We eat because we are bored. That 600 pound man didn't get that way because he was eating three square meals a day. He got that way because he was eating too much food.

That doesn't mean that it that all the time we are hungry we need food. But, if you have a good diet it does. There is no reason to cut out snacking all together. Snacking is also a great way to avoid things that we do as a pick me up some days. For example, we can eat a piece of fruit instead of going for that soda or candy bar.

The key thing to do is, to know what to eat and what not to eat. Here we will give you some snacking ideas that will help you choose what is right. It doesn't require a genius to figure it out, but you might be surprised at some of the suggestions. This might sound a bit strange, but I would suggest to you that you get a food dehydrator. You can get one for next to nothing and they are easy to use. I know that learning how to use something new isn't always as easy as it sounds, but believe me, these things are a snap to use. You can dry all kinds of things in your dehydrator. The key thing to remember is to cut things thin. The thinner the item is cut, the faster they will dry. Fruits are a great thing to dry. You can dry what ever is one sale at the super market that you can find. You can also dry canned items. I would suggest that you start out with a few easy things. Start out with strawberries. They are about as easy as you can get.

Not only are strawberries easy, but when they are dried, they carry a punch of sweetness that only sugar can match. The great thing is, these are sweet, but they don't have the calories of candy. You can also dry veggies as well. Are you like me, do you love the instant soup mixes they sell at the store? Well, I love them but hate all the added salt. If you dry your own veggies, you can make your own soup. What I love is, I can control how much salt I add. Here is something that I love to do as a snack. I take a handful of banana chips, strawberry chips, and about two apple chips. I take them and put them in some low fat yogurt. That makes for a snack that is good for you and something that I love eating. It doesn't get any better than that. You can snack on the dried food just plain. Grab some fruit chips instead of potato chips or candy. You really can't go wrong with dried fruits. They will last a very long time if you keep them in a baggie as well. You can also make fish jerky, turkey jerky and beef jerky. I love making jerky because it saves me so much money. I don't have to pay over ten dollars a pound for jerky.

I can use what ever cut of meat that is on sale at the store. You can always go with the same boring veggie platter for a snack. I do love my veggies, but this can get a bit boring at times. That is why I love the dried fruits and veggies.

A great veggie plate can be made up of any type of veggies. I would suggest that you make yours out of what ever is in season. That will produce the best veggie plate that you can. Also try putting a little oil and vinegar dressing on them. Don't use too much, but just enough to taste. Sprinkle salt to taste and also put some pepper or some pepper flakes on them. I love using pepper flakes because it gives the veggies a zing. You can also squeeze half a lemon over them for zing if you like.

You need to make sure that you aren't eating a healthy diet and snacking on foods that aren't good for you. I know tons of people who have a very good diet, but their problem is that they eat all kinds of junk when they snack. This doesn't serve any purpose at all. I'm sure you know people like this as well. Actually, I feel like yelling at them and calling them a moron.

If you must have some carbs, avoid the bad stuff. Don't go running for the potato chips. Instead, eat some sliced potatoes and add some seasoning to them. I like to use Cajun seasoning myself. I think that adds the kick that they are lacking since there isn't any fat. Another great snack idea is the small fruit cups that they sell in the stores. Don't get the ones that are in heavy syrup. Heavy syrup is a nice way of saying loaded with sugar. Also some of the pudding cups aren't too bad either. They also have yogurt cups these days too. They are good, especially if you get the ones with the fruit on the bottom. There you have it. The next time you feel guilty because you ate the wrong snack food, come back and read this article again. This will help you curve those hunger cravings and allow you to snack without the guilt.

Bad Food

In this day and age of heart disease, we all need to be careful. Did you know that 50% of men will die from heart disease? It is sad, but true. It is important that you watch what you eat. Not only if you are a body builder, but even if you aren't one. All of us should be concerned about our diet and our health. Take some notes and make sure that you pay attention. I'm sure there will be a few items on this list that you never dreamed were bad for you.

Solid Oils

I think that some people use them in place of lard and actually think it is better for them. If you are making a pie crust or something, skip the shortening and use the lard. Actually, the lard is better for you. People tend to use this kind of fat because it has a long shelf life. This stuff will stay good for ever. Personally, I hate the stuff. I can't see why anyone would like it. I think it tastes awful and it feels awful in my mouth.

Deep Fried Foods

You should avoid these like the plague. Refined flour and store bought flour This has been bleached and everything under the sun done to it. When this happens, all the good stuff from it is taken away. The reason why you are eating is, is been stolen from you. Stick with good whole wheat. That is what is best for you.

White Rice

I would piss off most of the world if I said that you should never ever eat this stuff. Though, I have to say that brown rice is better for you. Brown rice has all the stuff white does and more. You can mix brown with white if you still aren't used to eating the brown rice.


This is a no brainer really. You should try to consume as little as you possibly have to. Also, fructose is a building block for cholesterol. Keep that in mind when you have your next can of soda.

Canned Soups

These are almost always loaded with salt. If you want to buy these, make sure you get ones that are low in salt. If you have a craving for soup, see if your local deli makes soup. It will be lower in salt. That will make your heart happy.

Alfredo Sauces

Don't buy items with already made Alfredo sauce. Usually they are loaded with butter and salt. You don't want any of that.

Processed Meats

These tend to be high in fat and high in salt. They are a heart attack in a can.

Hydrogenated Palm Oils

Avoid anything that is made with these. These will give you a heart attack faster than eating a bucket of lard.

Good Foods

We all know that what we eat can help us prevent certain illnesses. We see on television all the time about people who are ill because of their diet. Well, maybe we should say lack of a diet. These people tend to be at risk of disease because they don't have the right things to eat. When people think of health and prevention, I think some of them think about pills and their doctor. To some people, they think these are the only tools they have. That isn't true. In fact, there are more important tools for you to use. Our diet is important not just for our appearance. A good diet will decrease your chance of getting cancer and other diseases. I know that it is hard to believe that just what we eat can play such a big role, but it does.

Think of it like this. As the old saying goes, you are what you eat. That is true. Your body needs many things to survive.

Over the long term you realize that diet is more important than ever before. I probably just like you, have known many people who have had cancer. Also, we see on television all the time famous people getting cancer. A lot of these people don't smoke. They don't do drugs, rarely drink alcohol.

Why are they getting cancer? I'm sure some of it has to do with genetics and some of it has to do with pollution. While up to 1/3 of it, is due to diet. That's right, they get cancer because what they eat. Perhaps it could be said better by saying, what they don't eat. Let's talk about some of the foods you should eat to help prevent cancer and other illness.

It was once said, an apple a day will keep the doctor away. This is true. These are loaded with vitamins A and C. They also help lower cholesterol and they lower your chance of getting cancer.

Just because a former president didn't eat his, doesn't mean you should avoid yours. Actually, this is one of my favorite veggies. One serving has 97% of your vitamin C for the day. Also, it is a good source of calcium.

Not only do these babies taste good, but they are good for you as well. They do help in preventing colds and flues. They also help prevent many forms of cancer. They are one of my favorite fruits.


Half of an onion a day will lower your cholesterol. Also, if you ever notice how you tear up when you cut an onion. They are good for people with asthma or other breathing problems. They open up the head so to speak. Also they fight cancer such as stomach cancer. You might not know it, but onions were once believed to be sent from god. They were believed to make people live longer and healthier. One thing you might not know is, onions reduce your risk of heart attacks and strokes.


Carrots have beta carotene which has been known for a long time to fight cancer. Remember when you were a kid and were told to eat your carrots or you will go blind? Well, that isn't true, but they are good for the eyes.


Out of all the fatty fish, this one is best for you. It contains omega-3 fat, which is very good for your heart. People who eat salmon at least once per week are said to have a 50% lower chance of heart attack.


You know these little devils. I used to eat them the night before going to school so I could fart all day long. Not only are these good for prostate cancer, but they also are a good source of fiber.


No, I don't mean a joint that you smoke while at sea. I mean the stuff that comes from the ocean! This is loaded with iodine and other things. It has calcium, magnesium, and iron. This is very good for fighting cancer.


All you have to do is go to the supermarket and see how many lemon flavored cold remedies there are to see the potential of this citrus fruit. Lemons are a great way to prevent a cold, the punch of vitamin C will keep you healthy. It is also good for sore throats.


What doesn't this stuff do? Well, while it might not be a cure all like once believed. It does prevent almost everything under the sun. From heart disease to cancer, this is great stuff. I suggest that you study up on garlic so that you understand all of the good things it does. It would take an article the length of a book to go into great detail. There you have it. Though I'm sure you are some what surprised, I'm sure that you will be able to absorb all the info in this article.

Planning Your Diet

We have plans for everything these days. That is how we can fit 100 different things into each day. While to an extent this seems a bit over doing it, some things do need to be planned. I don't know why we don't plan our diets. I mean, we plan everything else. Some people even plan on when they will have sex. Why not spend a few minutes and plan out what you will eat? If you are reading this, you have the time so. So sit back and follow these seven easy steps. Don't blink, if you do it will be over. It is really that simple.

1. Mini meals are great

They tell people with certain disease that they should eat several small meals each day. They say that a person should eat something every two hours. Well, that isn't too impossible to do. I would suggest that you start out every four hours. Keep it like you normally would any of your other meals. Make sure you have your protein and your fiber. Have some veggies and some fruit to balance everything out. Don't make your mini meal a bucket of fried chicken. I know that since it is a mini meal, the temptation doesn't seem as great. I mean, if you only slip up in a mini meal, who is watching? These are a great way to avoid hunger and improper snacking throughout the day. Just make your mini meals up and eat them every time that you have planned. If you plan on eating every two hours, every two hours it is. It doesn't take a road map to figure this out.

2. Don't go over board

This is easier said than done. You need to have a specific amount that you are trying to reduce. If you are trying to reduce your meals by 10%, then you should stick to that. I'm not suggesting that you break out the calculator and count up every meal that you have. If you have been on a diet for very long, you already have a good idea how many calories things have. Don't eat with your eyes, eat with your mind. That will help you cut down on the amount of food that you eat.

3. Eat good tasting food

From time to time let yourself go. Eat something that you know you shouldn't. If you get it out of your system, it will be easier to maintain your diet. If on the other hand you don't allow yourself to eat things you shouldn't from time to time, all you will do is hurt yourself in the long run. You are going to nibble each day on those things instead of just eating them occasionally.

4. Eat your calories don't drink them

Don't fill up on sodas and other drinks. You can get all your calories for one day in these if you do it too much. A few sodas here, A few cups of hot chocolate there. You get the point. That will put on the pounds easily.

5. Exercise

You need to do this to keep fit. Not only will it keep you fit, but it will keep you mentally sharp as well. That can go a long way in helping you stick to a diet. If you are depressed, chances are you will end up eating fatty foods that will make you fat. When you consume all of that fat, it will make you more depressed. It is a bad cycle to start.

6. Make your meals last

Chew your damn food son! I bet you heard that one as a kid. Well, it is true. Don't swallow your food. Instead, eat it slowly and enjoy the taste of it. If you do this, it will make you feel like you have actually eaten something. If you scarf it down, you won't get the same benefit. You will continue to feel a void.

7. Discover your food triggers

We all have these. When was the last time you went grocery shopping and you looked at a bag of cookies and realized that you had to have them? I have done this many times in the past. You need to understand what foods trigger your response system. If you can do this, you can avoid situations that will make you eat things that you shouldn't eat. Well, that wasn't so bad was it? There is no need to flip out when it comes to a diet plan. It is simple and easy. Just like anything in life, you should have a plan before you begin to do whatever it is that you are doing. The same is true with your diet.

Things to avoid when trying to lose weight

Dieting is not always easy. In fact, it can prove a tough challenge for many people. Sohere’s a little guide to avoiding things that could make you lose control and start eating.Avoid them like plague if you wish to succeed.

1. Don’t rush into the toughest diet you can find

This is a common mistake. Many people decide in a moment of desperation to follow asuper-strict diet and fail. Don’t rush into a diet that may be too strict for you. If you don’thave any dieting experience and are not 100 percent sure you can stick with the diet, thenchoose something else.

2. Don’t lose touch with reality

You can’t realistically expect things to happen over night. When choosing your goal, startsmall, but be prepared to go far. If you hear someone saying that he lost a large numberof pounds in a short time, don’t make it your goal to match his performance. Diet resultsare different from one person to another.

3. Don’t go to the gym too often

Another common mistake is to use the enthusiasm of the first days to hit the gym everyday. This won’t help you at all. Your body needs time to heal and expand the musclemass after each training session and going to the gym every day interferes with thisnatural process. Besides, a week of non-stop training could never offset ten or twentyyears of couch potato lifestyle.

4. Don’t get hard on calories

We all know that cutting down on calories is one of the building blocks of all diets, butyou have to be careful about it. Cut down on too many calories and your body will startstoring anything it possibly can. This is not a good way to lose weight.

5. Don’t skip meals

Some people think that skipping one or two meals could help them lose weight faster.They don’t understand that dieting is all about eating the right food and not starving

6. Don’t check the bathroom scales everyday

Everybody is eager to see the confirmation of his or her efforts in the shape of lost pounds, but you should not let this drive you to checking your weight everyday. The daily fluctuations of your weight will soon have you depressed and ready to quit dieting. And this is something you want to avoid.

7. Don’t let emotions drive you

Aside from the eagerness that drives people to check their weight every day, there are other emotions that influence dieting. If you know you’re used to reaching out for icecream or snacks when you are bored, frustrated or angry, then you should deal with these issues and not allow them to come between you and your purpose.

8. Don’t refuse to seek help

Not everyone was born with iron will and nerves of steel. If you need advice or help, don’t hesitate to ask it from your friends or from professionals. Don’t try to solve all problems by yourself.

9. Don’t deny yourself your favorite foods

Treats are a great way of raising your willpower and determination. Diets are just food control methods, not prisons. So what if you eat something forbidden once in a while, especially if that food is a favorite of yours? If such treats are not frequent, then they will make no difference in the long run.

10. Don’t rely on your willpower alone

Use your head as well. If you wish to know how much you eat, then write everything down and analyze the list for things that should not be there. Sometimes hunger creeps up on you and make you eat something you shouldn’t. Be honest with yourself and keep a clear head.