Are Too Many Choices Really Good For Us?

If you were alive during the Cold War, you heard tales of deprivation in the former Soviet Union. People waited in lines for hours in the hope of getting a loaf of bread and other basic necessities.

When your turn finally came, and you could enter the store, you did not stand before an array of goods at your fingertips. There was one type of toothpaste, one type of soup, one type of bread, and one type of soap-if any of these were available at all.

We are unduly blessed to live in such an abundant nature. Think about the extensive variety of goods available when you stroll down the aisles of your local super market. They're staggering.

Fifteen types of deodorant vie for your attention. Twenty-three types of hand soap want you to take them home and suds them up. More varieties of beef, chicken, pork, sausages, veggies, bread … and on and on … call to us: "Choose me!"

OK, I'd rather live in a land of abundance than a land of poverty. No doubt. But I do wonder sometimes, what this (over?) Abundance does to us.

Have you ever walked away, having selected a household item, like soap, only to have nagging feeling that you may not have chosen the "best" one? Have you ever found yourself staring at shelves of a particular item, reading labels carefully, wondering which one is really the one you should take off the shelf?

Have you ever felt a lack of gratitude for your life, even though you live in a land of plenty and you've never missed a meal against your will or because there was not enough food to go around? Even though you can choose for 48 room fresheners? Even though you can wear any one of the 33 shirts and slacks in your closet-but still you feel that you do not have anything to wear?

Perhaps, too many choices breed ingratitude and dissatisfaction. Some people spend more time working over color swatches for the bathroom wall paint than they do over their emotional or spiritual heath.

We fuss over type of granite to have our kitchen counters in-even though they're just counters, after all. And what difference does it make?

I wonder if having too many choices leads us to give insignificant things (like deodorant choice and color swatches) too much attention. And I wonder if the time we spend on splitting hairs between almost identical products is actually depressing our minds and spirits? Just wondering.

Source by DW Bogue

Healthy Low-Fat Diets

Health professional agree that eating fat can make us fat. Much meat and many dairy products, baked goods, fast foods, snack foods, fried foods, sauces, gravies, and oils are loaded with fat, and eating them can lead to obesity.

Today we all know that food choices we make have an important effect on our health. There is no longer any question that we should all be eating less fat. Low-fat cooking is no longer a special diet, but a way of life. If you are concerned about your health, you may already be trying to trim fat from your diet. However, you should not try to cut out all fat. Our bodies require some fat for good health, but most of us eat too much of it. We particularly eat too much saturated fat, the type of fat we get from animal sources, which seems to do the most harm to our bodies. As a rule of thumb, saturated fats tend to be solid at room temperature (with the exception of coconut and palm kernel oil). Unsaturated fats tend to be liquid at room temperature. Vegetable oils, such as corn, safflower and cottonseed, for example, contain unsaturated fat.

The negative side effects of a high-fat diet have been well documented. Saturated fats tend to raise blood cholesterol and clog arteries, which in turn means an increased risk of heart attack and stroke. Another common health problem associated with a high-fat diet is obesity. Fat provides, gram for gram, more than twice the calories of carbohydrates or protein, which means that for the same quantity of food, a high-fat food provides you with many more calories. To compound the problem, your body finds it much easier to turn fat into body fat for storage. The connection between fat and cancer risk is also strong. From laboratory studies and clinical observations of people's eating habits, it has been learned that there is significant evidence that eating too much fat leads to an increased risk of colon, rectal, prostate and breast cancers.

A reasonable and healthy approach to better nutrition should begin by reducing some of the higher-fat foods in your diet. Your primary goal should be to limit your total daily fat intake so that fat contributions no more than 30 percent of your total daily calories. By looking at your overall diet in this way, rather than at particular foods, you can enjoy an occasional high-fat food item while still limiting your total daily fat. The secret is to monitor your overall fat intake.

Here are some tips to help you reduce the fat in your diet:

· Read food labels

· Bake, broil, steam or boil foods instead of frying.

· Use low-fat or nonfat products.

· Select lean cuts of red meat.

· Limit the amount of meats, poultry and fish in your diet to 3 to 6 ounces per day.

· Use nonstick pan and vegetable cooking spray.

· When baking, use to to 2/3 of the fat called for in recipes. Apple sauce or apple butter often can be used to replace the fat.

· Avoid deep-fried and fried foods.

Source by Obi Enwelimikwu

Quick Weight Loss Programs – What You Must Know

Do quick weight loss programs actually work?

That's a question I've heard a lot laately. Maybe you already bought into one of those programs and failed to see results – and now you might be skeptical and wondering if all those programs promising quick results are just a bunch of scams and simply do not work.

Well, there are many proven weight loss programs out there that will work fast and reliably easy IF (… big if!) You take the time to find the proper one for you.

It's easy to understand that not every program is capable and effective for everyone, so finding the right one that will quickly make you lose weight requires extensive research and evaluation of the available programs in the market.

So the first thing to do before embracing a particular diet program is being sure that it will work for you and you can start by researching the forums online for advise on those programs and other people's experiences.

Most serious programs are built upon four main aspects:

  • A proper diet plan that will provide you with a balanced intake of nutrients (minerals, vitamins, etc.) and low levels of calories, carbohydrates and salt.
  • An exercise plan that will develop or strengthen your body resistance and cardiovascular capacity.
  • The proper supplements that will help burning more fat and quicker.
  • Maintenance program to educate you and develop the appropriate eating habits for long term results.

So a proven and safe program is a custom-made program for your particular case and will take into account your medical history and health conditions in order to determine your nutritional needs and ideal weight.

The best programs are created by serious and experienced professionals in the health and fitness fields, based on the personal and specific needs and goals of the person willing to control overweight and you can mostly find them at weight-loss centers all over the world and, nowdays, most of them can also be found online.

A good weight loss program that's intended to achieve quick results can work wonders for you, moreover if you've health concerns due to your overweight, as far as you resort to a professional and carefully follow the program to the letter.

A good personalized and supervised program will insure you lose weight quickly and easily in a safe manner.

But these programs are not like a "magic pill" that will meet your goals just by themselves; you'll need to put on the proper attitude – effectiveness of any program will require from you total certainty, commitment and willingness to lose weight.

Many people have already benefited from quick weight loss programs, liberating themselves from obesity and also improving their health. So you can find some good and trustable programs that will work for you. Just look for professional guidance to assure the appropriate program for your particular needs.

Source by Julio Rojas

The Basics About Diabetes Treatment

Glucose is a simple sugar that is used by body cells to produce energy. It is absorbed during digestion into the blood stream. Then it is transported using insulin to the liver and muscle cells. Diabetes disease is caused when the pancreas is not producing enough insulin or the normal insulin produced is not effective in the organs it is transported to. In some cases, it can be both.

Diabetes is characterized by high blood sugar levels. It is a disease resulting from the mode of lifestyle one is living. It takes a long time before recovery. For a person with type 1 diabetes, a diabetic diet, exercise and insulin is required. Type 1 diabetes is as a result of less than enough or sometimes zero production of insulin by the pancreas. This is why insulin injections are crucial to manage the diabetes disease. It affects people as early as from the childhood years.

Type 2 diabetes. It is as a result of too little insulin by the pancreas and low effectiveness of the insulin in the body. Treatment is supposed to increase the amount of insulin produced by the pancreas and increase the insulin's ability to work in the body. It should also reduce the amount of glucose produced and carbohydrates absorbed in the blood system. Type 2 diabetes is treated with drugs, weight reduction and exercise to increase effectiveness of the insulin in the body but when none of these seem to work, insulin is sometimes used.

A diabetes diet usually contains low fat, cholesterol and sugars. However, avoid foods with too much sugar such as sweet potatoes and some types of cereals. Try including green vegetables, soy and fish products in your diet. Uncooked vegetables, herbs, onions and garlic are good for stimulating insulin production hence managing the diabetes disease.

Before medication is provided factors such as the side effects, cost, complications and other conditions that might be important such as health conditions or pregnancy. High cost quality drugs are better than low quality cheap ones which may cause complications. Get a trusted physician to be prescribing and suggesting medication suitable for your health. Diabetes is more common with people who are obese as well as those used to sedentary lifestyles.
Other lifestyle practices that will make one more prone to getting the diabetes disease include oversleeping especially during the day, smoking and lack of exercise.

Source by Emma Wanjiku

Summer of Weight Loss

There are two things that you need to consider if you want to look good this summer. Your diet and your exercise. Only by paying attention to both you can make this summer a great summer.

Your diet needs to be lighter. Cut out all that meat, especially the really fatty one. Instead go light, have more vegetables. You want to BBQ then learn how to BBQ vegetables and fruit. Make sure you have some tropical fruits around for the sunny and warm days. Nothing cools your body down like some tropical fruit. So, keep your eating light overall. Have fruit and some whole grains for breakfast. For lunch and dinner have grains and vegetables, sometimes a little oil but whenever you eat, eat light. Eating too much does not feel good when the sun shines down on you. The best way to eat light is by having five to six smaller meals a day instead of three large ones. Feel the summer by using some colorful fruits and vegetables.

As to exercise make sure you get in early. Do not wait for the summer to be as hot as it can be. Start early by finding a group you want to go hiking with, or find some friends to go biking together. Another great sport for the summer is swimming. Get a membership to a local pool and start using it. Make sure all your equipment is ready to go. Maybe you still got to clean you in-line skates or polish your bike down. Pump some air in those tires. A great summer exercise is to join a local sports team. Often times they have local softball teams or basketball. Find out now so that you can start right when the first training begins. One thing you have to do for certain. Set yourself a goal. This can be walking for a certain amount of minutes or steps a day or it can be to really get into a certain sport this summer. Whatever it is, be committed to it and let everyone know. Exercise is only half the fun when you're doing it by yourself.

Source by Alexa Cooper

Benefits of Ginger

Ginger is one of the types of spices that often we encounter daily in our kitchen. This spice comes from Southeast Asia known as the fragrant rhizome and has a spicy taste. From the type and size, ginger divided into 3 types, namely Elephant Ginger, a small ginger (Emprit), and red ginger (Sunti). Of the three types of ginger, which is often used as a medicine is a red ginger because more volatile oils content. Since the first ripang ginger is used as traditional medicines, or herbs, aroma and taste of the giver of bread, cakes, biscuits, confectionery, and various beverages.

Ripang ginger contains phenolic compounds consisting of sesquiterpene compounds, Zingiberen, Zingerbon, oleoresin, Kamfena, limonene, Borneol, Sineol, Sitral, Zingiberal, Felandren. In addition there are also starch, dammar, and organic acids such as Malic Acid and Oxalic Acid, Vitamin A, B, and C, and the compounds flavonoids and Polyphenols. Oloeresin content and ginger, among others Gingerol Shogaol have a higher antioxidant activity than the antioxidant activity of vitamin E. The main bioactive components in ginger, namely Gingerol, a heat resistant compound that ginger can be processed into many kinds of products.

According to research at the University of Minnesota, US, concluded that ginger could slow the growth of cancer cells or reduce the size of pre-existing tumors. These properties of the active ingredients found in it. In addition ginger can also be used to maintain digestive health, 1 gram of ginger powder or 1 teaspoon fresh ginger brewed in a glass of water for 15 minutes, then drink before or after meals.

Source by Rano Kartono

Antioxidants – How They Work to Improve Our Health!

Antioxidants are substances that are capable of counteracting the damaging effects of oxygen on our system and skin! This is an oxidization process that causes the damage! Antioxidants are nutrients such as vitamins and minerals as well as enzymes which are proteins in your body that assist in chemical reaction! I'll try not to get too technical in my discussion of the subject! Antioxidants are said to play a role in the prevention of serious disease such as cancer, stroke, heart disease, Alzheimer's, arthritis and cataracts!

Oxidative stress occurs when the production of harmful molecules called free radicals makes it difficult for the antioxidants to offer protection. Simply free radicals have one or more impaired electrons and are unstable! They search your body for help in replacing or adding electrons causing cell, protein and DNA damage! This same process is what turns a pealed apple brown or iron to rust.

It's impossible for us to completely avoid the damage from these free radicals as they are a result of factors inside and outside our body! Inside factors are caused by strained breathing, metabolism and inflammation! External factors are caused by sunlight, pollution, strenuous exercise, X-rays, smoking and alcohol! Our antioxidant systems can not handle all the stress as we age so permanent damage occurs and the damage accumulates.

Basically, antioxidants neutralize these free radicals and by doing so they become oxidized! They need to be renovated. Once the process starts with the free radicals affecting the molecules in our system, they need to stop or slowed down by say beta-carotene's, vitamins C and E. Antioxidants reduce the deterioration caused by these free radicals. Therefore, it's important to bring antioxidants into our system! There is little doubt that antioxidants or food and products containing them are good for our health. You do not want to over consume though as numerous studies have shown that this over consumption can lead to different kinds of damage.

Food remains the best place to obtain the necessary antioxidants for your system! The whole principle of at least 5 portions a day of fruit and vegetables remains important. Vitamin E is found in nuts, peanuts, olives, vegetable oils, liver, avocado and leafy green vegetables among others. Vitamin C is found in citrus products, tomatoes, peppers, etc. Beta-carotene is found in such foods as cantaloupe, mangoes, sweet potatoes, squash and others. Selenium is found in such food items as seafood, pork, beef, brown rice and whole wheat bread. There are other sources and types as well and I'd look these up on the Internet!

Working out and exercise is an important way of fighting the effects as well as proper eating habits! Your skin is a major beneficiary of eating foods with antioxidants and there are certain products that include antioxidants that can be very beneficial in long term skin care! It tends to be absorbed when applied through some types of cream and can repair some skin damage!

The key to skin care is protecting the outer skin layer! Use creams that help retain moisture !!

Hopefully this article has helped you understand antioxidants, what they are and their role !! If a product claims that they have antioxidant properties, now you have some sense as to what they're referring to! Read lots about any product that you apply to your skin or take orally! Do not always believe what you read or hear!

Source by Brenda Bryce

Best Exercises to Lose Weight

Imagine experiencing a full body workout routine that takes minutes to complete and not hours. By reading every word of this article, you will learn the best exercises to lose weight and heat of your body to continue burning calories for up to 72 hours after physical condition. Skeptical?

Please Read On

I think you'll agree that there is confusion about what constitutes best practice sessions. If you ask a dozen trainers, you will probably get many answers. Many of the problem start from not knowing how to eat properly or following fad diets most recent.

High Intensity Strength Training is the collection of techniques and principles that have been proven most effective and efficient in achieving the goal of weight loss, health and fitness.

You may ask why should I care about winning the muscle when what I want is to lose weight? There are two very good reasons for this is important. Muscle adds good looks and attractive lines to your body.

And the other reason is that muscle burns more calories than fat. Even when watching TV or sleeping, muscle is a calorie. This should be sufficient motivation to gain more lean muscle.

The High intensity strength training method that I have presented in this paper has three important principles.

1. Intensity – the amount of effort generated during the year.

2. Volume and frequency – the number of hours spent exercising and how often you exercise.

3. Progression lose weight, gain lean muscle and strength requires that you train your body in a progressive manner.

Using the combination of intensity, volume and frequency and you will achieve the highest level of weight loss and gain of lean muscle mass and you'll be better and feel more confident.

Source by Allen Crocombe

Thyroid and Weight Problems

It is an established and accepted fact that there is a complex relationship between our body’s metabolism, body weight and thyroid. This is the reason why some people blame their weight gain or weight loss problem to their thyroid. Some people say they are fat because they have a thyroid problem. However, is your thyroid really to blame for your weight problems?

Anyone who suspects that their thyroid function is affecting their health or lifestyle should consult their doctor for diagnosis, advice and treatment if required.

Thyroid and Metabolism

The thyroid hormone plays a crucial role in the regulation of our metabolism. An individual’s metabolism, or more specifically, metabolic rate, can be measured by the amount of oxygen used by their body over a specific period of time. If the measurement is being done while a person is at rest it is called the Basal Metabolic Rate or BMR.

Measuring a person’s BMR was once one of the initial tests done in order to assess the status of the thyroid, as there is a strong correlation between BMR results and thyroid activity. Those whose thyroid glands were found to be not functioning actively were found to have low BMR readings.

Conversely, those individuals with overactive thyroid glands were also found to have high BMRs. Most doctors are no longer using these observations due to the fact that measuring an individual’s BMR is a complex process.

Hyperthyroidism’ and Weight Loss

Since the BMR of people with hyperthyroidism is elevated, it is almost inevitable that they will lose weight and struggle to gain weight. The speed of weight loss over a period of time will also depend on the severity of the overactive thyroid. This means that if the thyroid is extremely overactive, the person’s BMR will also increase resulting in increased caloric requirements for them to be able to maintain an optimal weight for their height and body type.

If the person does not increase their caloric intake to be able to counter the extra calories being burned by their body, they will very likely continue to lose more weight.

There are of course other factors responsible for regulating our appetite, activity and metabolism and they all work in a very complex manner. The thyroid hormone is just one part of this complex system.

Hypothyroidism’ and Weight Gain

Weight gain can be generally observed in individuals who have hypothyroidism and this can be substantiated by lower BMR readings.

The reduction in a person’s metabolic rate caused by hypothyroidism is often less dramatic than the rapid increase in the metabolic rate of someone with hyperthyroidism. However, unless the problems of an underactive thyroid gland are addressed by diet, medication, surgery or a combination of all three, unwanted weight gain will usually continue to occur.

When an individual with hypothyroidism initially gains weight it is not always caused by excessive fat accumulation, but more usually by the accumulation of water and salt in the body. Unfortunately low metabolic rate in combination with the subsequent weight increase often leads to less physical activity. This then compounds the issue by leading to further weight gain and the negative weight gain cycle continues.

Source by J Russell Hart