Disease Fighting Superfoods

Every year, an estimated 50 million and more people die from diseases worldwide. These according to the data of the World Health Organization can be blamed with cardiovascular diseases, cancers, diabetes and chronic lung diseases. Of which cardiovascular diseases that has been a result of s many other factors has topped them all resulting to 3 in every 10 deaths.

A big factor among these heightened killing of these mentioned diseases came from the condition of obesity, inactivity, and bad eating habits.

Healthy Eating

Over the course of years, several things have been done by most governments all over the world. They campaigned, they put awareness, and they launched programs. But obesity and the mentioned diseases continues to plague the population. Australia’s health council has come out with a healthy eating guide while denouncing some discretionary food and drink choices.

In the US, the department of health has even released its 2015 dietary guidelines. These mentioned guidelines have already been put into awareness of many. The UK government even put it into adverts pushing for food swaps for good health.

These national government campaigns all include the options of calling for more natural foods in the table while banking on those foods that may offer more than health benefits such that they can fight diseases.

Superfood – Healthy Food Swaps

Superfood, a group of food categorized to contain certain benefits more than the other foods, are known in the nutrition world to pack a heap of health giving benefits, fight off diseases and cleanse the body for better system functioning.

Superfoods can range from simple seeds and nuts to fruits and veggies, into specific lean meat and of course fatty fish.

Precautionary measures though for consumers should be practiced first before they trust products claiming to have superfoods. Since its boom, superfoods benefits can’t only be present in natural foods but in selected products as well. FDA approved Superfood though can only be few.

Superfoods to Fight Diseases

Kale. Kale is known to contain sulphoraphane, a compound that may help ward off certain cancers. It contains beta carotene, Vitamin K and Vitamin C.

Spinach. Like Kale, spinach contains beta carotene, vitamin K and Vitamin C but in a different level of course. IT also contains iron and vitamin B6.  Spinach ahs the glycoglycerolipids that inhibits the DNA polymerase activates in the solid tumor growth. It also has a capacity to fight cancer. It also contains folate which is good for the brain.

Chia. Chia is plant source of the famed omega-3 fatty cuds. It contains protein, vitamins and minerals all in its tiny seed. Chia also ash the capacity to stabilize sugar, lower cholesterol and boost energy.

Salmon. Salmon is considered to be one of the best Superfoods there is. Although you have to trust a wild salmon at that. Wild salmon contains omega-3 fatty acids which is beneficial for cardiovascular disease and can fight diabetes.  Salmon is one of the fish in the oily category such as trout, halibut, herring and mackerel.

Calamari. Calamari is more times more potent than salmon when it comes to omega-3 talk. Calamari, for those who are not familiar with it, is a squid. It contains       omega-3 fatty acids which are polyunsaturated fats that can fight inflammation and help in arthritis pain. It has capacity to strengthen the heart as mentioned.

Oats. Oats have this heart healthy benefits that can decrease cholesterol. Oats contains fiber which also helps in managing weight. With its lignin called enterolactone, it protects against breast and other hormone dependent cancers.

Blueberries. Blueberries have manganese, fiber, vitamin K and vitamin C. Blueberries can help fight cancer while preventing heart disease. IT also has positive benefits for diabetes.

Olive oil. Olive oil is a monounsaturated fats which is equally beneficial. It helps lower heart disease by lowering ones cholesterol.  Olive oil in recipes can also reduce the upper digestive, respiratory tract, breast and colorectal cancer.

Coconut oil. Coconut oil is one of the few oils that have been included in many Superfood list. It is slow in oxidizing which make it last longer without oxidizing. It also has lauric acid that can improve lipid profile. And plus, it can also help you lose weight.

Buffalo Berries. Buffalo berries are the newest in 2014 to be added in the superfoods lists although it has still limited studies behind it. These berries contain lycopene, an anti-oxidant that protects against cell damage. It contains also phenols which are believed to have anti-inflammatory benefits.

Whole Grains. Whole grains are mostly filled with fiber. It helps lower cholesterol while containing folic acid, selenium, B vitamins and other benefits. Most important benefits of superfoods include weight control, reduction of diabetes and promotion of digestive health.

Sweet Potatoes. Sweet potatoes contains anti-oxidants including beta carotenes, vitamin C and E, folate, calcium and potassium.

And there are More

The list above is just a speck in the whole picture of superfoods. There are more in the list and there are more in the benefits. The best way to remember it is to pack your meals with nutritional punch.  While choosing these superfoods is good, it shouldn’t replace everything that you eat. Combine it with all other menus. But once these superfoods can’t be present in your meals, try as much as possible to supplement it with supplements. There is plenty of it to choose from as long as it’s been approved for your health as well.

Image Credit: brianna.lehman via Flickr

Introduction to Superfoods

The word Superfood has been coined in the 1990’s and has taken a whole new look since then. It became a haven of true health benefits while becoming an escape of commercialized products to sell, creating unfounded fad and craze. So, what is it, really?

Superfoods have been coined to categorize certain foods in the health food industry. The categorization involves foods that aside from their healthy benefits for the body also have the capacity to aid and fight certain diseases. This aid stems from the superfoods unique components that can be enzymes, antioxidants, compounds or helpful oils.

Superfood as a label though has been put into scrutiny after just every food manufacturers has claimed their products to be one. For this, several food and drug bureaus as well as organizations put up regulations as well as standards to be met.

Countries that have the regulatory rules has indicated that a back up study needs to accompany a product before it can be labeled as such and be marketed to the public.

What is Superfood?

Superfoods have been a popular term. But one can distinguish these foods right away from ordinary food in the grocery stores. These foods mostly have low calories and are high in nutrients. Most superfoods are rich in anti-oxidants, differently categorized (depending on the type of the food).

IN recent standards, for a Superfood to be a Superfood, then it may need to be reaching some specifications. It should be nutrient densed; it should have a high ORAC than ordinary food produce and it should have a low calorie ration compared to its nutrients.

Types

Superfoods have different types. They can be categorized differently depending on its source or its classification in the food world. The list can be read below.

Green Superfoods

The green superfoods may include all green leafy vegetables. These veggies may come in hated by many but these foods have a high concentration of digestible nutrients. They also pack a heap of fat burning compounds while giving the body vitamins and minerals while protecting the body and healing it. Most of green superfoods have proteins, photo-chemicals, digestion friendly compounds and muscle building components. Kale, broccoli, spinach, are among the examples of green superfoods.

Marine Sourced Superfoods

Sea foods surely tease the tongue and for some it can be a rare treat. For the record though, seafood shouldn’t just become a treat, it should become a regular meal included menu due to its superpowers to fight certain diseases. Selected marine produce includes oily fish such mackerel, wild salmon, tuna and halibut and other source such as krill and calamari contains one super beneficial oil, the omega-3.

Omega-3 among its all other benefits, can help suppress impending heart diseases while helping in diabetes. It can also help fight cancer while quelling some disease’s inflammatory tendencies. Today, omega-3 has been a well studied and a phenomenal fatty component and the most consumed supplement in the US.

Fruit Superfoods

You can never go wrong with fruits. Fruit superfoods are high in anti-oxidants which help fight free radicals and prevent cellular damage in the body. Free radicals occur through our own doing though through pollution, smoking, burnt foods, deep frying foods, and radiation.

Fruits notably blueberries, lemons, grapes, kiwi, acai berry, dragon fruit, pomegranate, grapefruits, among others, are known as superfoods.

Nuts and Seeds Superfoods

Nuts such as walnuts, peanuts, almonds are known superfoods. They contain friendly fats and are good for the brain. Seeds on the other hand contain better benefit. Such is positive from the likes of Chia and flaxseed. Both contains the well revered omega-3 fatty acid and is known to be very helpful or the body.

Chia today has been taking the world by storm and has slowly been gaining some following as health boost included in meals and food menu.

Seaweed Superfoods

Seaweeds are known to be the nutritionally dense plants in the planets. This can be due to the fact that they get access from the world’s nutritionally dense ocean foods. They contain more calcium than milk and then beef. They can purify the blood system of the body since their chemical composition is close to those of human blood plasma.

Alga may be classified in this category.

Preparation

Superfoods when acquired naturally (not processed as product sold by manufacturers) may need to be prepared. Fruits though may not need preparation; they can be eaten as it is. Vegetables may be turned into salad or be included in Superfood menus you can choose from. Superfood that is often prepared though may include those of the fish or the marine sourced produce. In preparing ad cooking these, other Superfood veggies may be included.

Most Superfood fan though has the easy and the refreshing way to include Superfood into their meals, through juicing and smoothies. Just every fruit and every veggies out there can be tuned into that. Some veggies though may not palatable due to its bitter taste when eaten raw or mad into smoothie, honey can be your secret weapon in here.

You may see some recipes in this Superfood recipes link.

What not to do With Superfoods

Although superfoods are very beneficial at its best, some people have lost these benefits once preparations for these foods are altered. How? What are these sins you may commit against superfoods? Here are some.

  •    Frying superfoods
  •  Covering Superfood with flavoring (sugar, colored coatings)
  •  Smothering your food with sauces
  • Believing that the muffins you are eating really contains those berries so you buy it instead of doing it yourself.
  • Putting butter in your superfoods
  • Artificially flavoring your superfoods
  •  Over seasoning your Superfood meals or products

Benefits

Here are the main benefits of the superfoods to the health.

    1.  Regulates the metabolism
    2.  Burns body fat (paired with exercise and other healthy lifestyle)
    3. Lowers LDL (bad cholesterol) while increasing the HDL (good cholesterol)
    4. Reduces or prevents inflammation
    5.  Prevents heart disease
    6.  Lowers risk o cancer
    7. Promotes digestive health
    8.  Protects and detoxify organs from toxins

Warning and Safety

It is impossible to be able to just consume superfoods and avoid all other foods. They key is to consume as much superfoods as possible and portion what you eat of the remaining foods.

As the popularity of the superfoods has become a craze and has increase, variety of products and from the natural superfoods has been introduce e in the market. Other things such as supplement that can mimic the Superfood effects has also been manufactured and sold. These products may be unregulated and may need further evaluation before being taken in. Some of these products may be unhealthy, thus may warrant recall from certain food and drug bureaus.

For safety, cook or prepare your own food. Or if buying packed Superfood products, refer it and have it approved by a health care provider first.

Image Credit: mcrosacci via Flickr

11 Natural Sleeping Tips

Women spends 32% awake than men do. While 62% of adults experience sleep problems at least a few nights in a week. But, what is sleep? How important is it to your health? What does this statistics implies?  And how can you get a long deep sleep in natural way minus the sleeping medications?

Sleep is the time at night when you recuperate from your day’s work. This time, your body is inactive, your muscles relaxed while you have no consciousness. The sleep is the time when everything in your body is suspended. But due to several reasons, you may experience sleep problems. These sleep problems can result to things such as difficulty in concentrating in daily tasks, problem in recalling things, work difficulty and can even impair senses.

More problems in sleep can result to issues in driving and safety, troubles in finance order and even lead to weight gain.

Ten Tips to Sleep Better

Here are some recommended natural remedies to your sleep problems.

Have a Sleep Schedule; Stick With It

Sleeping at the same time every night can help you establish a pattern. Then get up at the same time everyday too. DO this even on weekends. The same hours every day can program your biological clock and help you keep a steady pace.

Take Note of Your Sleep Patterns, Sleep Happenings

Keeping a sleep diary has long been established as a way to help you get the right sleep pattern. The diary can help you understand your sleeping habits. It should include everything related to sleep. What you’ve done before and after sleeping or what activity you’ve done during the day which might have affected your sleep quality. Rate your sleep everyday with 10 as the most satisfactory going to one as the least. Check for the activities you’ve done for that day when your sleep is likely to be bad. Compare your daily recordings after.

Have a Warm Bath

Not a hot bath, but a warm one. Put in some relaxing things in your bath such as Epsom salts and baking soda, relaxing scents such as lavender and rose petals. The salts can be a good detoxifier as well. Play music and do not stay too long, just enough time to keep you relaxed and be ready for bed.

Stop Smoking

The main reason why smoking can’t help in your sleeping pattern is nicotine. Nicotine can affect sleep since it is a stimulant. And once you are an active smoker, you may feel a pang of withdrawal at night which keeps you from sleeping.

Visit a Doctor and Have Your Medications Reviewed

Some medications may be keeping you from getting that long and peaceful slumber. So take some time to go see a doctor. Take some tests. Your sleeplessness might be caused by other things, let your doctor evaluate your prior medications as well if you have one.

Exercise

Exercise five hours before your bedtime. When you workout, your body can be elevated into a vigorous mood. But after four hours, your body may feel relaxed and you may feel drowsy. This is the time to go to sleep.

Cut on Caffeine

Cutting on caffeine after lunch can help in giving you the right sleep. Caffeine from coffee and cola can stay in your blood system for 8 hours. This can perk you up for that long which may keep you from sleeping soundly.

Eat the Right Food but Avoid Heavy Meals at Dinner

Eating all natural foods or incorporating healthy foods in your diet may ease your sleep problems. Loading on fruits and vegetables can help. But then avoid heavy meals at dinner time when you’re close to your sleeping hour. Heavy meals can cause heartburn and can disrupt sleeping.

Keep Your Sleeping Environment Clutter Free

A cool room, dark and quiet can induce a peaceful sleep as well. Turn down all the possible noise sources such as television, laptops, and cell phones. Keep your bed comfortable and your pillows the way you like it, soft and fluffy.

Drink Warm Milk and Listen to Soothing Music

Warm milk can help in soothing the nervous system. Calcium can calm your jagged nerves. Drink it 15 minutes before bedtime and listen to soothing music, not the loud ones. Turn down the volume to the most comfortable knob, enough not to disturb your sleep.

Take Omega-3

People with higher omega-3 fatty acids have lesser sleep disturbance than those who are low in it. It can be helpful in establishing a good sleep pattern together with the above factors.

See? Sleeping soundly can come easy; it just needs your perseverance, the right settings, diet and the proper preparation. Now go take that needed nap.

Image Credit: RelaxingMusic from Flickr.

7 Heart Smart Foods (How To Eat Healthy And Help Your Heart)

healthy_heart_foodsDespite the decrease in cardiovascular disease in Australia in the last three decades, it is still one of the top causes of death in the country and continues to plague the population in terms of disability and illness. One of the main triggers of heart disease is atherosclerosis – it Is the build up of fat cholesterol and plaque in the inner lining of the arteries. The development of the condition usually starts during childhood and progress with age. When blood supply to the heart affected, it can result into a heart attack, angina and sudden death. When an artery is blocked or suddenly ruptured and bleeds, it will lead to stroke and paralysis. Major risk factors include hypertension, high blood cholesterol, tobacco smoking, obesity, inadequate physical activity, diabetes and an unhealthy diet.

A change in lifestyle can help lower the risks of getting a serious heart disease. It doesn’t have to be a sudden change or going cold turkey. A slow and gradual change in lifestyle  will give realistic and attainable results.  Anyone can start by changing into a healthy diet. There are foods that actually help in clearing the arteries other that oats.

  1. Oats. Oat bran and oatmeal are at the top of bad cholesterol flashers. The soluble fibers in it attaches itself to bad cholesterol and flushes it out of the system. It’s also rich in Niacin  which increases HDL or good cholesterol. Fruits can be added  to make it more delectable and healthy.
  2. Vegetables. Green leafy vegetables  like spinach and broccoli contains vitamin C and vitamin A which prevents cholesterol oxidation and help keep the arteries free of plaque. Garlic and onions lowers cholesterol levels and helps prevent blood clots. It also helps the blood lining to relax resulting in a more efficient blood flow. Tomatoes and avocados (fruity vegetables) are rich in antioxidants
  3. Salmon and other oily fishes. Oily fishes are rich in omega-3  fatty acids and helps in lowering heart diseases by reducing plaque buildup and blood clots in the arteries. . Salmon fat is monounsaturated which helps in controlling cholesterol levels. It lowers the trigledytes and elevated good cholesterol in the body.  Canned salmons are good although it may high in sodium. Whenever possible buy it fresh and cook it using olive oil, steamed or any which way preferred.
  4. Apples. An apple a day keeps bad cholesterol away. The fruit is high in fiber such as “pectin” which binds  with bad cholesterol. It also contains flavonoids that can help reduce heart disease by up to 50% if eaten regularly.
  5. Olive oil. Using cold-pressed virgin olive oil in cooking or used as flavoring to foods can cut the risks or developing or reducing heart disease. Regular consumption of olive oil decreases systolic and diastolic blood pressure plus it is rich in antioxidants like vitamin E that helps in decreasing the chance of developing certain cancers.
  6. Wine. Consuming a glass or two daily with meals can help in reducing plaques and increase the level of HDL or good cholesterol. Flavonoids in red wine help in relaxing the arteries prevent blood clots. Drink in moderation and not consume the whole bottle in one sitting.
  7. Dark chocolate. Ah, chocolate. The great equalizer and probably the most sought after in the list. It may be on the bitter side but compared to milk chocolate, dark chocolate contains flavonoids that help in lowering blood pressure and reduce inflammation. Chocolate lovers, celebrate.

Why Men Gain Weight

pot bellyFor most men when they approach middle age, weight gain is bound to happen especially in the mid section. For some,  “having a belly” is a form of respect and authority, figuratively and physically speaking. Now, this can be true if you’re a New York mob boss but if you’re just an average joe then you need to reconsider. Knowing the causes of weight gain in men is crucial before losing those pounds. Weight gain usually starts in the 30s and will continue  up until the mid 50s. During the said timeline, men lose ½ a pound of lean muscle a year and it is replaced by fat. Weight gain and having a pot or beer belly can be avoidable although several factors come into play during this time of a  man’s life.

  1. A slowed metabolism. As men hit middle age, the metabolism will start to slow down. The body burns fewer calories per day   compared to a younger self  with the same activity level. If this is ignored, it will surely expand  the waistline. Also as mentioned earlier, muscle mass decreases and is replaced by fat. Muscles  play a direct role in a person’s metabolic rate. Muscles burn calories even when a person is asleep that equates to a high metabolism. So a decrease in overall muscle mass will result to a lower metabolism.
  2. Lack of sleep. This is another trigger for weight gain. A human body functions perfectly when well rested. When a  person doesn’t get enough sleep and rest, a person will experience physical and mental stress. And for most men, to compensate for stress is to eat and drink more. Eating and having a bottle of beer before going to sleep  will surely add calories which will not be burned efficiently because of a slowed metabolism. Having power naps during breaks will help refresh the mind and body. Try to read a book instead of a late snack. Take a warm shower to help you, whatever activity that you feel will help you the much  needed rest, do it.
  3. Reduced testosterone. A decrease in testosterone level is common among men when they reach middle age. Although this is a normal part of a man’s aging process, low testosterone levels will result in muscle loss, fatigue and weight gain. The traditional view was that obesity came first and a decrease in testosterone follows. But it is also proven that a decrease in level will also result in weight gain. Testosterone plays an important role in on how a a man’s body balance insulin, glucose and fat metabolism.
  4. Lack of exercise. Low levels of testosterone and a slow metabolism in middle age can make any man feel tired all the time and the feeling of not having enough energy to work out, exercise or do any regular physical activity. A 30 minute cardiovascular activity 5 time a week and a 20 minute strength training 3 times a week will surely help in losing weight. The body will burn more calories, the muscles will be conditioned and will retain or even build more mass that will help pin enhancing metabolism.
  5. Unhealthy diet . Alcohol consumption, an overall unhealthy diet and slow metabolism will surely result in weight gain and increase in abdominal fat. Excess sugar consumption and a high calorie diet are triggers of weight gain.

Man Boobs Demystified

man boobsSome women with small breasts dream of having a set of large and attractive breasts. For men, it’s the opposite. Man boobs, man breasts, moobs, man jugs or any term you want to call it, this condition is as embarrassing as being caught without an underwear…. in public. If you’re a boy or a man with an abnormally large breast, you can take some solace because the condition is quite common even though no man would want to have a bigger breast than a woman. The medical term for man boobs is “gynecomastia”. It is defined as the enlargement of breast tissue among males. It may manifest transiently in newborns almost half of boys during adolescent develop large breast during puberty. Signs and symptoms of gynecomastia includes swollen breast tissue, tenderness of the breast, increased areola diameter and asymmetry of the breast tissue. Man boobs are a serious  cause of embarrassment among boys and men.  And there are a number of causes that can be controlled or some may be treated by going through surgery.

Lack of exercise and obesity. Excess fat in men and boys can manifest in the midsection and the chest. Too much fat in the chest area will result to man boobs. Chest fat is usually difficult to lose even with some form of exercise. Consulting a professional trainer can help in planning the best workout that will eliminate fat in the midsection and the chest. Plus, too much fat will limit the body’s estrogen production spurring the growth of breast tissues.

Diet. An unhealthy diet is another trigger in developing man boobs. Too much sugar, carbohydrates and foods rich in fat  will result to weight gain and weight gain can result in having man boobs.

Malnutrition and starvation. It seems to contradict but when a human body is deprived of the right and adequate nutrition, the testosterone levels drop. Now the liver’s function to limit estrogen levels goes down thus causing a hormonal imbalance. If there is too much estrogen than testosterone, the body will adjust and man boobs will show.

Medical and other health conditions. Any health and medical condition that shakes up the normal testosterone production or interfere the balance of the male-female hormone levels can also result into gynecomastia. Hypogonadism, tumors, hyperthyroidism, kidney failure, cirrhosis and liver failure are some of the medical conditions that can contribute in the man breast development.

Medications and some types of drugs. There are cases that some medications and prescription drugs can cause man boobs. Regular use of anabolic steroids is known to cause man boobs. Excess testosterone from steroids will be converted to estrogen. Too much estrogen will make the breast enhanced and pronounced. Prescription drug such as Digoxin, Furosemide and Spironolactone increase the chances of a man developing gynecomastia.

Age. Decrease in skin elasticity, muscle mass and body fat can result to gynecomastia. An aging obese person will likely have the condition for a long time.

Getting rid of man boobs can be simple as doing some form of exercise and any regular physical activities. Any weigh loss activity will surely help to eliminate the condition plus get the benefits of having a healthy and strong body. A good physical routine plus adopting  a healthy diet are some of the best steps in preventing or eliminating man boobs. Once you have reached the goal of getting rid of this embarrassing condition, make it a point to not to go back to the old lifestyle. It should be a complete lifestyle change and not a short term goal only.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Natural Approach To Cellulite

Women around the world will agree that cellulite is one body problem they want fixed or eliminate. Liposuction is one of the most popular and fastest ways of getting rid of cellulite and unwanted fats. But if liposuction is not celluliteyour cup of tea, then there are natural ways of eliminating cellulites. But first understanding what cellulite is and its causes will help in developing an effective plan in eliminating cellulite.

What is cellulite? It is a condition where fats push against the connective tissue beneath the skin and making the surface look dimpled and with a lumpy appearance. It is usually common  on the thighs and  buttocks and can occur after puberty. The condition is classified  through three grades:

  1. Grade 1 cellulite. There is no clinical symptom but through microscopic examination of the cells, anatomical changes in the underlying area will manifest
  2. Grade 2 cellulite. The skin will have less elasticity and will show pastiness in lower temperature. Anatomical changes will show through microscopic examination.
  3. Grade 3 cellulite. It will give the cottage cheese look and visible dimple like skin will show along with all the grade 2 signs.

Causes of cellulites include:

  • Hormonal factors. It plays a dominant role in cellulite formation. Almost everyone says that estrogen initiates and aggravate cellulite although there has been no concrete clinical evidence or proof to support the claim. Insulin, thyroid hormones, proclatin and catecholamine adrenaline are all believed to trigger cellulite formation.
  • Genetic factors. The angiotensin converting enzyme and hypoxia-inducible factor 1A are traced to trigger cellulite forming.
  • Lifestyle. A stressful lifestyle will automatically trigger an increase in the level of catecholamines, which is associated in cellulite formation. Some diet practices can also diminish of such chemicals. This in turn  will decrease body fat and helps reduce the chances of cellulite formation.
  • Predisposing factors. A number of factors have been proven to affect the development of cellulite. Factors such as subcutaneous fat distribution, race, sex, biotype, predisposition to lymphatic and circulatory insufficiency are proven to contribute to cellulite development.

How To reduce Cellulite Naturally?

Reducing  cellulite the natural way  is one of the best ways of beating the problem. Plus it will have no dangerous side effects, there are no need for any invasive surgeries, it will cost you almost nothing since most of it can be done with at home or by any physical activity or change in lifestyle.

  • Exercise of any physical activity is a sure bet in beating cellulites. Cellulite are stored fats in the body, and these fats are stagnant energy. By doing exercises or any physical activity, it will burn the stored fats and convert it to energy. Fat loss due to exercise will result in a leaner and strong body plus it will enhance the body’s metabolism which will convert more fats into energy. Exercise also promotes good blood circulation and a stronger circulatory system.
  • A healthy diet together with a good physical regimen will also help in combating cellulite development. Minimize processed foods and go to a fiber-rich, vitamins and mineral rich and antioxidant- rich foods. If possible, go for organic foods. A healthy diet change will also flush out toxins out of the body.
  • Go for natural therapies like yoga and meditation. A stressful life can lead to cellulite development. For most women binge eating is one of their defense whenever they are stressed. For men, its beer or any type of alcohol. Attending therapies that teach an individual to relax and meditate will curb out these unhealthy habits. With the right attitude and knowledge, anyone can win the cellulite battle.

 

10 Tips For Cutting Down Smoking

Cutting down on cigarettes and the amount you smoke is not the ultimate goal if you want to go for a healthy lifestyle. Cutting down the cigarette habit is the ULTIMATE goal. But smokers will say that it’s better to cut on smoking than doing nothing. Well if it works for the individual to gradually minimize and cut the number of sticks per day then its good. Cutting on on smoking is good enough, quitting totally is better. Here are some tips on how to quit

  1. Awareness is one key. If you’re aware of how much you are smoking a day then you’ll know how many sticks or packs and how much you’re spending for cigarettes. Try to keep a written record. Smoking without paying attention will make you smoke more. Try to have psychological and physical control  and see long long you can have it.
  2. It is not hard as you think. Smoking is an addiction and once you begin to be honest with yourself and knowing the effects of smoking to your health, it will be a life changing experience to cut down on this addiction. Try to analyze the benefits and side effects of smoking. Educating oneself with the pros and cons of tobacco will help in the road to kicking the habit.
  3. Set effective and realistic goals. Set the cigarette to be specific, measurable, realistic and timely. Foe example, if you are smoking 20 sticks a day, try to cut it to 10 sticks a day. You can start by doing this twice  a week until it progresses. This will ensure that  you are focused on the target goal.
  4. List down the reasons why you want to reduce your smoking. Make a list of the reasons why quitting smoking is good. Select the goals that matters to you and your family and write it down. Whenever you have the itch for a drag, take out the list  and review it.
  5. Don’t look at it as if you’re giving up something really important because it will seem like it’s a big loss. Remember that by doing this, you are tossing something out of your life that is harmful to you, your family and other people around you. Even though the people around may want to tell you to quit totally, you need to know that you are doing this for yourself.
  6. Know the triggers and then deal with it. Some people feel the urge whenever they are doing something. Some habitually smoke after sex, while drinking, while watching tv, after eating, while having a break or while drinking coffee. Identify your triggers and  eliminate or changing them will help. Try doing something different  instead of smoking in response to your triggers.
  7. Going  “cold turkey”  is a common and effective approach to quitting smoking for many smokers. It may be hard  and you may make several  attempts but it will raise the chances of stopping totally. Try to talk to someone who have done it or research over the internet  to prepare and deal with known issues and withdrawals that comes with it.
  8. A  pack of gum, a bar of chocolate or a nicotine patch are good alternatives. It will take your mind out of smoking because you’re doing something that differs from the habitual smoking.
  9. If you have cut down on your cigarette consumption, you will surely notice and feel the changes happening to  you and your body. Your breath will no longer smell of cigarette, your smell and tastes are improving, your fingers will not smell and will not get the tobacco stains, you will not get the tired and sickly look and you will feel healthier that before.
  10. Talk to ex-smokers and find out the ways they’ve done to completely quit smoking. Absorb the information and get all the help and advice that you need and then do it.

Why Is Back Pain So Common?

There are different triggers why back pain is common.  Symptoms of back pains usually occur or triggered by a quick or sudden movement or several causes may have been building for some time. By definition, back pain is a pain that originates from the muscles, bones, joints , nerves and other structures in the spine. It can be a sudden  fall or chronic pain. The pain can also manifest or affect the arms, hands, feet and legs and can include other type of symptoms. Symptoms can include numbness, weakness and inability to stand and tingling. This condition is one of the most  frequent complaints by people around the world next to headaches. The human spine is made up of nerves tendons, muscle, ligaments and joints which are capable of giving pain to any individual.

A human spine is divided into four regions known as the cervical region, thoracic region, lumbar region and the sacral region. The spine is known to have two weak points – the cervical region and the lumbar region. The lumbar region or the lower back area carries at least half of the body weight thus it bears the stresses and strains the body gives. Every joint in the spine has a maximum functional position. Any departure from the functional position will increase the chances of pains and strains. Muscle, nerve and joint strains will lead to an overall imbalance in the spine structure over time. Some common causes of strain and back stress are poor posture, incorrect lifting, weight, sleeping on an overused or sagging mattress, incorrect sleeping position and overtraining. A sudden or wrong sort of movement and inactivity can cause simple back pain. Inactivity will make the back muscles go weak thus making the back more vulnerable to pain and damage when too much stress is applied or too much movement is made. Sitting in one position for long periods can also result into spasm and pain. Stiffness and inflamed muscle fibers will result to swelling, neck pains and lower back pains. Chronic back pain is one of the most common type of back strain. The most common causes are poor posture, a bad fall, sudden lifting of weights, fatigue or pregnancy.

Physical fitness and exercise are effective in preventing recurrences of non acute or chronic back pains. The rest is another effective way  of relieving acute back pain from minor back traumas and strain. A cold compress or an ice pack can be helpful or any anti-inflammatory drug. Liniments and ointments can also soothe cramped back muscles. For acute pain, the goal is to restore the normal function while reducing pain. The condition is not serious and the recovery can be aided by slowly resuming to normal activity as soon as possible within the pain limits. Doing any physical activity within the pain limits can also aid in the recovery of the individual. Too much bed rest (rest for more than 2 days) is considered non productive. Going through a physical therapy program will increase the chances of a fast recovery. Therapy can include massage, hot and cold compress, electrical stimulation, stretching, aerobic and strength exercises. Din exercises to restore the natural motion and the strength of the back is beneficial in pain relief and prevention of future onsets of back pains.

Trends In Natural Health

Natural health methods and alternative medicine always find ways to develop and increase its knowledge base. And just like conventional medicine, natural health is adept in new trends being introduced into the field. Alternative medicine includes a wide range of health care practices, therapies and products which are not included in regular degree courses in established medical schools.  It is just two months since 2013 started it the the time experts are predicting the health trends of the year.

The interest in natural health and alternative treatments will still gather popularity. Many mainstream medications are showing dangerous side effects, people will look for  new solutions to minimize any health conditions and to minimize any serious side effects a patient may get. Although alternative treatments are popular, some people are still skeptical about some of its procedures. With much information and resources, letting the people know of its benefits will not hard to spread. More people will try new remedies, change the lifestyle and try new activities to avoid conventional medicine side effects.  A hundred years old practices such as yoga, acupuncture and tai chi will soar further and gain attention due to its ability to soothe and calm the body. It also helps in treating chronic aping, obesity, stress and hypertension which are common today.

Another  trend introduced is moxibustion. Moxibustion is a type of acupuncture techniques that  involves or uses mugwort ( a natural herb). Traditionally, it’s a Chinese medicine that is used to invigorate the flow of the blood, Qi and  gives a pain relieving effect. The Moxa herb is lit on fire and are placed on the top of the needle. It can also be applied without using acupuncture needles; it can be burned in its stock for and the acupuncturist hovers and swirls the stick above the acupuncture points. . It is proven effective for muscle spasms, joint pains low back pain and other body pains that are caused by cold weather.

Alternative psychotherapy interest will grow. Alternatives are not only herbs, yoga and massages. People can get and experience significant changes with activities such as art therapy, music therapy, sound healing , energy balancing and other modalities that connect to people as a whole. These are sought after modalities that people are willing to take release tension and stress.  Personal satisfaction rather than external achievements will be the focus of more people. Minimizing and cutting schedule of extended lifestyles and instead creating opportunities and activities that will calm the mind and body. Personal growth and spiritual classes will help in achieving  this need. It will bring back the center of the body and will help focus on what is comforting .

The connection between food and health will be in the forefront. Different groceries and markets are now offering organic and free range produce. People today are learning to eat clean – eating foods without preservatives, additives, chemicals or too much sugar. Buying habits will also change, people will read labels more to check the nutritional facts of the product to be bought. This did not happen a few decades ago, but people today are more aware of the effects of preservatives in the human body.