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Dieting Mistakes You’re Making

Dieting Mistakes You’re Making

Dieting Mistakes You’re Making

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We all know of dieting as a tedious process. The process of actually motivating yourself and finally convincing yourself that this is finally it, you’re going to start. That is in fact the simple part. The hard part is, of course, getting it right and creating the perfect formula for your dieting efforts. Unfortunately, it is that same formula you are following for your diet that might be sabotaging your results. Dieting is a sea filled with many dos and don’ts but we’ll reveal how the ideas you think might be helping you, are in fact, hurting you.

Starting a Diet

Dieting can be a great start to a healthier body, but there are also repercussions with diets that many are unaware of. The one problem you can face with dieting is the aftereffect it brings with binge eating.

The problem with dieting is that you restrict yourself of vital nutrients, micro-nutrients, and healthy fats – this void then creates an imbalance in your body’s chemical processes and hormonal balance, which in turn will lead to post-dieting binge eating. You’ll soon find unhealthy food cravings after coming out of a diet regimen.

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Reducing Your Calorie Intake is a No-no

Lowering your metabolic weight means your dependency on food becomes lower. This drop will cause a spike in weight, specifically when you return to your normal food intake. You’ll find that once you’re back to your regular eating habits, packing up those pounds will come even faster than before. By reducing calories, your body, to compensate, will start storing away fat, a key for reserving its energy.

Spending Too Much Time on the Scale

The infamous daily scale step in hopes of miraculously shedding a few pounds consumes you. Carefully gauging where the needle sits time and time again can be stressful and misleading. Here’s the thing — muscle has a much greater density, therefore it takes up less volume than an equal mass of fat and this is deceiving. You might be losing your fat from your dieting efforts, but if you are also weight training or exercising, then you might in fact hover around the same weight, maybe even increase in pounds. Not to worry, though because muscle weighs more than fat so this weight might be deceiving to the eyes.

Relying on Diet Pills

Usually regarded as the shortcut in dieting, diet pills are known to create dependency and in some cases extreme addiction. You may think that this seems unlikely, but the truth is that diet pills can create ongoing psychological and physiological problems. Some of the more common side effects that come with diet pills are: include insomnia, restlessness, headaches, diarrhea, and dry mouth. Due to their chemical make-up, there is a chance that intestinal problems, diarrhea and cramps can also occur after taking pills, which promise to block carbs or fat. These bad effects perpetuate a dependent cycle. Let alone that over the counter diet pills are unregulated.

Not Incorporating Fat into Your Diet

By now you we all know fat is known as a three-letter enemy towards dieting or better known as the “F” word. Unfortunately it has the worst credibility as a compound. But new data has emerged on its great benefits, well, the good fat that is. Fat is a great contributor to making our skin soft, providing essential fatty acids, acting as a energizing fuel source, and mainly acts as a source to help you absorb vitamins A, D, E and K, which are essential for your nervous system. What you should look for are Monounsaturated and Polyunsaturated Fats. These types of fats raise good HDL cholesterol, lower bad LDL cholesterol and protect against the buildup of plaque in your arteries.

In addition to providing essential omega-3 fatty acids — which boost brain function and may help strengthen your immune system and improve your mood — and omega-6 fatty acids, which in small amounts can keep skin and eyes healthy. At 9 calories per gram, any type of fat — good or bad — packs more than twice the calories of carbohydrate and protein. But the key here is moderation.

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Thinking Whole Wheat is a Healthier Choice

Here’s one that does not get talked about often… whole wheat. The bark against whole wheat is the misconception of it being favorably healthy. We all know that refined grains like white bread is digested fairly quick, due to this quick digestion, it basically causes a spike in blood sugar. Although, whole wheat is considered as a healthy alternative with its high fiber content, the problem is that it is usually mixed well in with fine flour, which unfortunately leads to rapid spikes in blood sugar as well.

To measure how quickly food would elevate blood sugar science uses the glycemic index as the gold standard. According to a Harvard studyresearch found that on average, whole wheat bread has a glycemic index of 71, consequently it falls nearly identical to white bread.

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Include These 5 Habits In Your Life

Include These 5 Habits In Your Life

Include These 5 Habits In Your Life

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While it is true that surrounding ourselves with positive people is a benefit, what really matters is how much we trust in our own abilities to find our own sense of happiness and success. If we do not believe in ourselves, it is unlikely we can achieve our personal best.

1. Say No and Mean it

Do you ever hear a request and want to say no but say yes instead? The “why” we say yes is not as important as the fact that we are denying ourselves our own truths. This request represents something we do not want to do.  It does not make us an evil witch to say no. In fact, it makes us a confidence protector of our personal resources of time, money and energy.

Saying no is another way to cultivate confidence because we are sending a clear message: “What I want for me at this moment is not to do what you are asking of me.” There is nothing wrong with that. In fact, it is one way to demonstrate self-care by confidently standing up for our right to protect our own resources of time, money and energy.

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2. Build your Confidence

Reaching for uplifting, positive reading and visual material is one way to increase your sense of self-confidence. Ruminating on a positive quote, internalizing a positive message (“I can do anything I put my mind to”) are just two examples of how you can build your own confidence.

Not all of life’s best gifts can be purchased off a shelf. Bringing ourselves to the table where building takes place is important. Sitting still and doing the mental work to change self-doubt into self-confidence is important.

3. Dress to Impress Yourself

It has been said that clothes make the person. But the truth is, clothing has both a symbolic meaning and becomes a physical experience. What really matters is what does an article of clothing mean to you and how, if at all, can it increase your self-confidence and display your sense of self-awareness? If sweat pants make you feel like you are in control of your destiny because you are self-employed and work from home, then wear them. But if a suit is more to your liking, then wear that.

Putting the clothes on and expressing ourselves physically to the world is a sign of confidence. So, confidently wear your clothing to symbolize your own sense of confidence.

4. Celebrate Past Victories

Do you have a pile of cards people have sent you over the years? Chances are, those cards say nice things about you. Do you have a few cherished accomplishments you enjoy bringing to the front of your memory? We can groom a higher sense of self-confidence by celebrating our past triumphs. It is one way to honor the strengths we possess.

5. Reject the Doubt of Other People

Also known as “haters,” doubters are people who have no faith and little confidence in our ability to succeed. They also secretly wish they had our desires, dreams and abilities to succeed.

Rejecting the doubt of others can be difficult because sometimes these are the people who are closest to us. But, we have to be able to dismiss their negative comments in order to build our own sense of confidence. Without this skill, we are likely to remain stuck.

Here is an idea: don’t share your dreams with them at all.

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What causes cancer?

What causes cancer?

What causes cancer?

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There are lots of cancer myths floating around. One is that if there is no family history of cancer, you are quite safe. Another one is that a lump in your breast means you have cancer. Each of these myths is based on ignorance, especially about the causes of cancer.

In order to understand what causes cancer, we have to understand what is happening to all those cells in our bodies, because this is where it all starts. The average adult human body has 100 trillion cells. For healthy growth and development, these cells grow, divide and die in an orderly fashion. We know, for example, our skin loses about 40,000 cells a minutebecause they just wear out quickly. The wear and tear on our skin from exposure is considerable and it is also the largest organ in the human body. These dead cells have to be replaced and with normal healthy cell growth this occurs.

What causes cancer?

Think of the causes of cancer as a jigsaw puzzle. There are several hundred pieces to assemble. Scientists have discovered quite a few of the pieces but it is only when they complete the puzzle that we will finally understand the causes and develop an effective cure for cancer.

They have identified many causes and they are just not sure how and where they exactly fit in to complete the puzzle. The leading causes of cancer are:

  • exposure to carcinogens (agents which are known to cause damage to cells)
  • genetic factors
  • lifestyle choices
  • acidity levels in the body
  • random cell mutations you cannot control

As regards acidity in the body, it was Dr. Otto Warburg, the Nobel Prize winner for Medicine in 1931, who discovered that this was the basic cause of cancer.

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He said:

“Cancerous tissues are acidic, whereas healthy tissues are alkaline. Water splits into H+ and OH- ions, if there is and excess of H+, it is acidic; if there is an excess of OH- ions, then it is alkaline”.

Cancerous cells could be defeated by giving more oxygen to the body in general, thereby making it more alkaline, he claimed. The next 80 years were dedicated to exploring this cause of cancer but Warburg’s claim became discredited with the advances of other discoveries. Recently, however, a study from Boston College researchers has shown that there is some evidence to support Warburg’s discovery. Just another puzzle to solve.

The last cause mentioned in the list is one of the most interesting ones because recent research shows that this may be a major one. In fact, researchers have found that the cell mutations happen randomly in 66% of cancer cases. There is nothing we can do about this: just the luck of the draw. The other third of cases are connected with lifestyle, genetic factors and environmental issues. Now, do not let this depress you. After all, if you had a 33% chance of winning the lottery, wouldn’t you go for it? I would! So, let us examine these possible causes so that we are in there with a good chance of preventing cancer.

How to reduce your chances of getting cancer

– Filter tap water

There are lots of chemicals which are carcinogenic and one example are those in the water we drink. It is safer to use filtered water, rather than the bottled variety. If you store your water in a glass flask, then you are going to be safer as the BPA (Bispehnol A) in plastic bottles can leach out. This is an endocrine disruptor and might lead to cancer.

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– Stay active

A sedentary lifestyle has been linked to diabetes, heart disease, obesity and some forms of cancer. The experts recommend that regular exercise can help to avoid all these problems. So, the next time you are tempted to be a couch potato, try to go for a walk instead.

– Sleep in the dark

How many times have you left the light on as you drifted into sleep? Women may be at increased risk of ovarian and breast cancer if they do not sleep in total darkness. Any interference from light will interfere with the release of melatonin which can then increase the release of the estrogen hormone. Too much of this hormone may lead to breast cancer. Getting the right balance of this hormone is essential to good health.

– Avoid dry cleaning

Are you sure that cardigan needs to be dry cleaned? The problem here is that the chemical known as perc (perchloroethylene) has been linked to some cancers as reported by the Environmental Protection Agency.There may be no need to clean the whole garment using chemicals. You can try to wash it by hand or just use white vinegar to get rid of a stain.

– Avoid radiation

Too many scans or too much sunshine all help to build up the amount of radiation you are exposed to. Radiation is known to cause cancer as evidenced by the high numbers of cancers after nuclear testing. Radiation has now permeated soil, water and ice globally, as a result. If you need to have an X ray, you should not worry at all as the amount is very small indeed and well within the limits recommended by health experts.

Radio frequency waves such as those released by your cell phone may be linked to cancer although there is no conclusive proof yet. But why risk it? A good idea is to make shorter calls and send texts, rather than long chats. It is also much cheaper.

– Watch your diet

The experts here are not so sure about why exactly fruit and vegetables help to prevent cancer. One thing is certain though; there are plenty of antioxidants in these foods which help to fight the cancer cells. Eating plenty of plant foods plus whole grains is a great way to stay healthy.

Eating resistant starches (found in rolled oats, white beans and green bananas) can help to keep healthy cell growth at optimum levels. A report in the Cancer Prevention Research journal found that when subjects were given too much red meat (10 ounces a day!), cell proliferation rocketed, this increasing the risk of malignant cells developing in the colorectal area.

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Focusing your life on what truly matters to you

Focusing your life on what truly matters to you

Focusing your life on what truly matters to you

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– Cut Out the Noise

In order to discover your life’s true mission, first you’ll need to filter out the noise. We are bombarded nonstop by distractions that steal our attention away from what matters most. The average American checks their phone 150 times per day. According to another study, the average American spends 10 hours 39 minutes each day consuming media.

When you’re constantly plugged into this hyper-connected world, it’s very hard to focus on what matters most to you. Intentionally cutting out the noise is one critical key to discovering your life’s true mission. By getting rid of it, or cutting back on the unimportant, time-sucking activities in your daily schedule, you’ll create the space in your life to discover who you are and the difference you want to make in the world.

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– Become a Self-Expert

Becoming a self-expert is a crucial step in discovering your life’s true mission. We are all wired differently, with different strengths, gifts, and personalities. You have something unique to offer to the world. As you discover your innate strengths, it’s important to give yourself the opportunity to maximize those strengths. Frequently, when we utilize our innate strengths, we can make a bigger impact, and our success feels purposeful because our actions are aligned with who we naturally are.

As you work on becoming a self-expert, it’s important to pay attention to what lights you up and what tugs at your heart. What are you passionate about? Do you feel a strong sense of compassion for people who suffer from something specific, and you’d love to help relieve their suffering? Are you determined to solve a certain problem in the world? What really energizes you and totally lights you up? If you’re not sure what lights you up, check out this free workbook to find your passion.

– Get Out of Your Comfort Zone and Serve

It’s easy to feel unmotivated and uninspired when every day is the daily grind. If you don’t feel a strong sense of purpose in your daily life right now, chances are that feeling isn’t going to magically disappear. You’ll need to change things up in your life and get out of your comfort zone.

In order to become the best version of you, and live your best possible life, you’ll need to step out of your comfort zone over and over. You’ll need to experiment and take action on a regular basis in order to discover what lights you up, which path you want to take, and the difference you want to make in the world. You can research over and over but until you get out of your comfort zone and take action, you’ll likely continue to feel confused.

When you get out of your comfort zone to serve others, you not only feel a sense of fulfillment because you’re brightening someone’s day, but you also learn a ton about yourself. You learn how you make your best difference. Perhaps you’re a great listener, or an awesome leader, or you have a profound way of encouraging others. As you break out of your bubble and focus on serving others, you will gradually start to uncover your life’s true mission.

– Learn to Think Big

Too often, people hold themselves back from living their potential because of thinking small. What if Mother Teresa would’ve said, “Ah, I’m just one person. I can’t really help the poor?” What if Walt Disney would’ve said, “My big dream is crazy; people would never come to Disney World. Who do I think I am?”

Living your best, most meaningful, fulfilling life, where you’re spending your days on fire for your purpose, starts with your mindset. You really can make an impact on the world. Work on your mindset and your ability to think big. Immerse yourself in learning from people who have already done what you aspire to do, and surround yourself with others who inspire you to make your best difference in the world.

– Take a Small Step Every Day

You don’t have to move to a remote island by yourself in order to discover your purpose. You also don’t have to march into your boss’s office tomorrow morning and say, “I quit!” and embark on a soul-searching project while you watch your savings account rapidly deplete. You can start by taking a small step every day out of your normal routine to make a difference. Ask yourself, “What’s one thing I can do today to make someone’s day a little better?” When you spend time every day intentionally brightening the world, you will find yourself having more and more fulfilling days and the daily grind feeling will be a thing of the past.

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Workout Resources

Workout Resources

Workout Resources

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With hundreds, probably thousands of workout resources on the Internet, it can be difficult to know which ones are going to have the best information about the latest nutrition information, workouts, workout challenges, etc. You could spend hundreds of hours just surfing the net and looking for sites that will help you reach your fitness goals. Rather than see you waste all of this time, we have compiled a list of some of our top 10 favorite workout resources that we know you will love.

. Tone it Up

This is a diet and exercise plan that is healthy for anyone to use. Of course, before starting any diet or exercise program, you should consult with your physician. This site also offers loads of great articles about diet, nutrition, the latest and best exercises, and other information that is going to help you get in and stay in great shape.

. The Complete 4-Week Beginner’s Workout Program

This popular fitness magazine offers great articles with loads of advice for fitness enthusiasts of all levels. Find articles about the best beginner workout programs, how to gain more muscle, healthy meal plans, etc. You will even find advice that will improve your sex life, and other interesting articles.

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. Blogilates

This is created by Cassey Ho, an award-winning fitness instructor based in Los Angeles, CA. Blogilates is the top female fitness channel on YouTube, and it already has more than three million subscribers, as well as more than 30,000 million views. Get great workouts, diet information, and loads more.

. Body Rock

This free, seven-day Reboot Your Life challenge is a great place to get started if you have been thinking about losing weight and getting into better shape. You can also use 21 days of free workout videos. Simply choose your level and get started today to achieve the body you have always wanted.

. Turbulence Training

This tool offers both lifestyle and workout tips for men and women who are on the go, but still want to get into better shape so they look and feel better. You will find videos on all types of workouts, challenges, diet tips, healthy eating and recipes, and much more to help you lead a healthy lifestyle.

. Fitness Blender

Fitness Blender was created by just two people: a husband and wife. Check out these free workout videos for all fitness levels. You can use the customizable workout calendar, track your progress, and talk with other fitness enthusiasts on the community forums. Membership is completely free.

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. Anytime Fitness Cost

Do you want to know what the fees are for memberships at gyms in your area? Instead of making a bunch of calls or visiting many websites, this site gives you the fees for the most popular fitness centers all across the United States.

. XHit

Find all of the best fitness videos at XHit. You will be able to use the daily workout routines that burn lots of calories, take part in workout challenges, etc. Be sure to check out the many health and fitness tips to achieve your perfect body in a healthy way.

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Think Like an Athlete

Think Like an Athlete

Think Like an Athlete

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What does it mean to “think like an athlete”?

For me, thinking like an athlete is about being focused on your goals. As well as being a former professional sprinter, I’m from a family of athletes, and I married an athlete, so I know a little something about what makes athletes tick.

Athletes think differently. By focusing on the end result, I think athletes are better able to prioritize, and we really can apply that focus in every part of our lives. Whether we’re preparing for a training session, thinking about food and how to refuel our bodies, or planning a fun and relaxing outing, we’re thinking about what we want to achieve.

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I think this approach can be helpful for everyone, in all walks of life. Try thinking about what you want to achieve and you may be able to think past all the other chatter that your brain is always throwing at you.

For instance, when you’re heading to the gym are you already thinking about what you’ll be doing later? Is the gym something you want to get over and done with? Perhaps you’re even one of the many who dread going to the gym and try any number of avoidance tactics?

I understand. Believe me, there are days when I’ve wanted to skip the gym, curl up on the sofa and eat cookies. Nowadays, when that happens I make a promise to myself that if I still want to do that after I’ve worked out, then I’ll let myself. The thing is, in the back of my brain, I know that I won’t want to.

By deciding to think like an athlete, I can make a workout more fun and less of a drain. Rather than counting the minutes until I can stop, I think about how my body is improving with each thing I do. I think about the positives: how I look, how I feel and how much happier I am when I’m active.

It’s the same with meal times. As an athlete I think about my long-term goals rather than focusing on short-term treats. While I believe in rewards and know we can’t all be virtuous all the time, I also know that if I want to feel good then I need to eat healthy, balanced meals.

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For an athlete, the end goal is always the primary focus.

This way of thinking has worked for me at every stage of my life and I’ve never looked back. I continue to think like an athlete even though my competitive days are behind me. I feel that having a plan and a definite direction keeps me positively moving toward self-improvement.

Try thinking like an athlete in every part of your life for just one week and see what a difference it can make.

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Skincare in the big city

Skincare in the big city

Skincare in the big city

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Do you live in an urban environment? City life has its perks but one downside can be the effects of pollution on your skin. Here are seven tips to deal with what I call ‘skin pollution.’

I grew up in a small town in upstate New York, which most people would consider the ‘country.’ When it came to my skin, pollution wasn’t something I had to be very concerned with. There was minor traffic, an occasional pile of burning leaves in the fall and there was always an abundance of fresh, clean air. Once I left the country, I saw just how different environmental factors are in other parts of the world, especially in urban cities.

I’ve traveled to some wonderful cities around the world to areas where pollution is a huge problem. It’s astounding what you can find on a white washcloth after walking through a busy city at the end of the day. Trust me, it’s not a pretty sight. The effects of air pollution are many and can include skin feeling, irritation and even premature aging, to name a few. Pollution can also zap your skin of its healthy glow and leave it looking dull in appearance.

This got me thinking: Should we take extra steps to care for skin if we’re exposed to high pollution areas? Let’s take a good look at pollution, understand how it affects our skin and learn what we can do to counter those effects.

What Is Pollution?

Pollution comes in different forms. There’s visible pollution that you can literally wipe off of your skin and see on your washcloth. And there’s pollution that comes in gas form, such as nitrogen dioxide, sulfur, carbon monoxide and so on, which aren’t so visible. Bottom line, all forms of pollution can collect on your skin and create an unhealthy barrier.

So, what does pollution actually do to your skin? Pollution can be responsible for skin dryness, dullness, clogged pores, some allergic reactions, skin irritations, inflammation and my least favorite—premature aging. And the worst part is, this is the short list. Pollutants can really affect our face, neck and hands, as these are the areas that are most exposed on a regular basis. Also, pollution can make skin extra sensitive. When that happens, it becomes much more susceptible to certain skin irritations.

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We can break drown pollution simply into two categories: indoor and outdoor pollution. A few examples of the indoor type include:

•   Secondhand smoke
•   Dust mites
•   Mold
•   Carbon monoxide
•   Soot from wood stoves and fireplaces
•   Air fresheners
•   Pet Dander
•   Chemical sprays, including hair sprays, furniture polish, glass cleaners, perfumes

Indoor pollutants can cause dry skin and irritation. So, what can you do? The first thing is to improve the overall air quality by allowing fresh air into your home as often as possible. Open windows or doors on both sides of your home to create a real cross breeze. By constantly freshening the air, you can help dilute the levels of pollutants, which can be of great benefit to your skin. Of course, if you live in an area that’s heavily polluted outdoors, try to keep the air in your home as clean as possible. Commit to freshening up your home on a regular basis to get rid of things like pet dander and dust.

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Some examples of outdoor pollutants include:

•   Smog
•   Dirt, Dust and Debris
•   Vehicle exhaust
•   Carbon Monoxide from fires and fuel combustion
•   Ozone
•   Nitrous Oxides
•   Toxic metals, such as mercury and lead
•   Ammonia

And the list goes on and on…

Outdoor pollutants are detrimental because they increase the number of free radicals in our environment—which, studies have shown are damaging to the skin. Free radicals can damage cells over time by encouraging oxidation.

Is there anything we can do minimize the effects of pollution on our skin? Absolutely. Here are a few quick tips to help counter pollution’s negative affects on the skin.

Double Cleanse

Your first step is to remove pollutants and dirt from your skin through proper cleansing. For those living in high-pollution areas, you may want to do a ‘double cleanse.’ Choose a cleanser for your skin type that has no added sulfates.

Give your skin a thorough cleansing, specifically to remove the surface residue such as your makeup, dirt, excess oils and any chemicals you may have come into contact with. Once you’ve done that, it’s a good idea to give it another quick cleansing. This way, you can be sure that you removed all the surface impurities and have thoroughly cleaned your skin. If your pores are clogged, you may experience a few breakouts. That’s a good indication that you need to cleanse your skin a bit better.

Believe it or not, there are visible signs that you aren’t cleansing your skin properly. If your skin feels uneven, it may be an indication that there is something lodged in there. This is most common on your cheeks, chin and nose area. Trust me, it’s not attractive. The good news is that just a bit of extra cleansing on a daily basis may help.

Scrub the Pollution Away

Exfoliating your skin on a regular basis can help guard against pollution’s negative affects from building up, giving it that dull, drab appearance. A good scrubbing helps to deep clean your pores and remove the dirt, oil and debris.

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Double Down on Antioxidants

Antioxidants help to fend off free radical damage and can support healthy-looking skin when taken internally. You can do this in the form of a healthy diet. Antioxidants to benefit the upper layers of the skin are also available in skin care products. Look for cleansers, moisturizers, and serums that contain antioxidant vitamins C and E. They can help to counteract the pollution we encounter from urban environments.

Use a Good Moisturizer

Moisturizers will provide your skin with antioxidant support and help hydrate your skin. Most importantly, a moisturizer will help to create a barrier between your skin and pollutants.

Avoid Rush Hour

For the sake of your skin, it’s always best to avoid being in pollution-heavy areas during rush hour. The more automobiles on the road, the more pollution you’ll be exposed to. It’s as easy as that.

Wear Sunscreen

There is never a reason not to wear sunscreen when going outside. I’m sure you knew that. As a friendly reminder, it’s imperative to always protect your skin from the damaging UV rays.

Stay Hydrated

Water is good for your body and great for your skin. By drinking more water, you can help keep your skin hydrated. You should also load up on fresh fruits with a high water content. Look for antioxidant enriched citrus fruits, watermelon and apples for a delicious, hydrating snack.

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Stay consistent with healthy snacks

Stay consistent with healthy snacks

Stay consistent with healthy snacks

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Snack smart! Here are great snacks with 150 calories or less.

If you’re running out of healthy snack ideas, today’s post is for you. Ideally, healthy snacks should consist of some beneficial carbohydrates and a bit of protein. The protein helps to satisfy your hunger, and the healthy carb sources (like fruits, vegetables and whole grains) have water and fiber in them, so they help to fill you up.

We all get into ruts with our eating, and snacking is no exception. If you’re turning to the same old snacks every day, here are some healthy snacks to try—all for 150 calories or less.

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Mini Smoothie  – Whip out your blender and make a snack-sized smoothie with ½ cup (125 ml) low-fat milk, ½ cup (75 g) of frozen berries and a scoop (12 g) of vanilla protein powder. About 140 calories, 8 grams of protein.

Edamame Soybeans – Drop 1 cup (150 g) frozen edamame soybeans (in the pod) into boiling water for a few minutes. Sprinkle with a little salt or soy sauce. About 150 calories, 12 grams of protein.

Greek-style Vanilla Yogurt and Fruit – One single-serve (5.3 oz/150 g) carton of yogurt + ½ cup (75 g) sliced strawberries. Sprinkle with nutmeg or cinnamon. About 145 calories, 13 grams of protein.

Low-fat Cottage Cheese + Chopped Veggies – ¾ cup (160 g) low-fat cottage cheese + ½ cup (60 g) chopped mixed veggies (carrots, cucumber, peppers). Add a few twists of fresh ground pepper. About 130 calories, 21 grams of protein.

Vegetables and Hummus Dip – 1/3 cup (80 g) hummus + cucumber, carrot, celery sticks. About 150 calories, 6 grams of protein.

Nonfat Latte – Made with 12 ounces (360 ml) low-fat milk or soy milk. Sprinkle with cinnamon. About 150 calories, 6-12 grams of protein.

Hard-boiled Egg on Tomato Slices – Slice a medium fresh tomato and one hard-boiled egg. Top tomato slices with egg slices, season with salt and pepper. About 120 calories, 6 grams of protein.

Tuna + Avocado – Pop open a single-serve can or pouch (2.5 oz/75 g) of tuna and mix with ¼ medium avocado, mashed. About 150 calories, 18 grams of protein.

Turkey Sticks – 3 ounces (90 g) roasted turkey breast wrapped around ½ medium cucumber cut into sticks. About 120 calories, 25 grams of protein.

Tortilla + Beans – Heat up two corn tortillas, top with 1/3 cup (50 g) cooked black beans and tomato salsa. About 140 calories, 7 grams of protein.

Protein Snack Bar – There are plenty of snack bars to choose from with 150 calories or less. For the most staying power, look for one that has some protein—10 grams or so per serving is a good target.

Vegetable Soup + Low-fat Cheese – Heat up one cup (250 mL) of low sodium vegetable soup and top with 1 ounce (30 g) grated nonfat mozzarella cheese. About 150 calories, 14 grams of protein.

Roasted Garbanzo Beans – Drain a 1-pound (454 g) can of garbanzo beans. Toss with 2 tsp olive oil, salt & pepper. Roast on cookie sheet at 400 degrees, 30 minutes or until crunchy. Let cool. 1/3 recipe = about 150 calories, 12 grams of protein.

Turkey Jerky + Fruit – 1/8 medium-sized cantaloupe melon + 1 ounce (30 g) low sodium turkey jerky. About 100 calories, 14 grams of protein.

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Soy Nuts + Fruit – 1/3 cup (30 g) dry roasted soy nuts + 1 small peach. About 150 calories, 11 grams of protein

Oatmeal with a Protein Boost – Cook 1 packet of low-sugar instant oatmeal in water; stir in 1 TBSP (6 g) plain protein powder. About 150 calories, 9 grams of protein.

Rice Cake + Nut Butter – Spread one rice cake with 1 TBSP of almond butter. About 135 calories, 5 grams of protein.

Shrimp + Cocktail Sauce – 3 ounces (85 g) cooked whole shrimp dipped in 3 TBSP of salsa or cocktail sauce. About 150 calories, 20 grams of protein.

Quick Spinach and Egg Cup – Put ½ cup (75 g) frozen chopped spinach in microwaveable coffee mug. Microwave on high 30 seconds. Pour 1 beaten egg, seasoned with salt and pepper, on top and microwave another 90 seconds, stirring after 45 seconds. About 100 calories, 6 grams of protein.

Quick Quinoa Salad – Mix together ½ cup (90 g) cold leftover cooked quinoa, with ¼ cup (30 g) minced veggies/parsley + 1 oz (30 g) fat-free feta cheese. Drizzle with lemon juice, season with salt & pepper. About 150 calories, 16 grams of protein.

Sweet Potato with Yogurt – Top ½ medium baked sweet potato with ½ cup (100 g) of plain nonfat Greek-style yogurt. Sprinkle with nutmeg. About 115 calories, 10 grams of protein.

Quick Bean Salad – Mix ½ cup (80 g) cooked white beans + 1 small chopped tomato + 1 TBSP of low-fat Italian salad dressing. About 150 grams, 8 grams of protein.

Tempeh Wraps – Slice 2 ounces (60 g) tempeh into long sticks. Wrap with thinly sliced cucumber. About 120 calories, 11 grams of protein.

Salmon and Crackers – Mix 2 ounces (60 g) canned salmon with 1 TBSP of Dijon mustard. Spread on a 4 medium-sized whole grain crackers. About 145 calories, 13 grams of protein.

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Biting Nails Can Seriously Harm Your Health

Biting Nails Can Seriously Harm Your Health

Biting Nails Can Seriously Harm Your Health

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First of all, I sincerely apologize to my nail biting readers for being a spoilsport, but there is nothing I can do about it. This article will only show you all the cons of this horrible habit of yours, because there are no pros that I can find, or science can find.

The medical term for nail biting is onychophagia. According to psychiatrists, this is categorized under an impulsive control disorder where you can’t control the urge to resist a temptation, urge, or impulse that may lead to harm you in some way. Psychiatrists also believe that this is an act of obsessive compulsive disorder. Anyone can bite their nails. It is believed that 45% of teenagers tend to do this. At times this will roll over into adulthood and become a lifelong habit. There are even extreme cases where professional help is required.

Nail biting usually occurs when a person is suffering from stress, anxiety, or nervousness. Such feelings trigger the person to automatically chew on the nails to attain calmness. Now, is it the only way to calm yourself, or is their any alternative solutions? Of course there are. And before we answer that, here are the horrifying facts that will explain why you should stop biting your nails.

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Your nails are full of germs.

No matter how many times you wash your hands, germs will still live under your fingernails. Because among all other body parts, your hands, meaning your fingers which have nails, come into contact with surfaces of all types. The thing is, your fingers may stay clean, but your nails aren’t. So when you are biting your nails, you are also biting on the earthly bacteria, germs, yeast, etc. Yum!

You are transferring the bacteria into your mouth.

So what happens after chewing on your delicious germs and bacteria? You are carting them from your nails to your mouth. Once they are inside your mouth, they will eventually enter your digestive system. A group of Turkish scientists experimented on 59 people, combined of nail biters and non-nail biters, to see whether they transport bacteria to the mouth. After swabbing each person’s saliva, the results were quite alarming. 76% actually transported E. coli, and similar germs, compared to 26.5% of non biters. E.coli is responsible for diarrhea and vomiting.

In extreme case, you can end up with oral STIs.

It is not only commuting E.coli and other bacteria, in extreme cases, you may end up with oral STIs. If you are a nail biter, and one fine day you notice herpes, or blisters on your lips, don’t fret. They are the results of your nail bacteria that you have successfully transferred to your mouth.

From bacteria in your mouth to dental damage.

When you are constantly gnawing down your nails, your teeth are clicking together. This results in tooth fracture, tooth chips, and in rare cases, tooth loss.

For biters who wear braces, brace yourself!

Those of you who wear braces, you are risking yourself into tooth resorption, meaning your body cells are reabsorbing its own cells, and tissues. There is also a possibility that your braces might break down which would force you to undergo expensive and potentially painful dental treatment.

You’ll end up having stinky breath.

Stinky breath occurs due to bacteria in your mouth and saliva. When you are continuously biting your nails and transferring different bacteria, they are prone to permanently stay inside your mouth. This leads to stinky breath, which, no matter how many times you wash your mouth with fresheners, the foul breath will never go away.

You may have pus in your fingernails.

What happens when you bite your nails? You leave the nail bed exposed. Bacteria, such as Staphylococcus aureus, can enter the open pores and build pus around the nails, causing nail abnormality. This pus is a horrible business. It can be cured through pills, or has to be drained out through surgery.

Polish your nails, but don’t eat them!

Nails look beautiful with nail polishes. But if you are prone to eat them, then stop using them. Because polishes contain harmful chemicals, and some varnishes contain formaldehyde, the chemical that is used to embalm dead bodies. If this information isn’t enough scary to put you off, then I don’t know what is.

In the end, your nails will never grow back to normal.

Nails are formed on nail beds, and never-ending biting will eventually ruin your nail bed. Your once long nails will gradually shorten, and at one point, will no longer grow any further. The nail’s surface will tear off as well, looking awful, and embarrassing for you to publicly show off.

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So, how can you ever stop?

Now, you know what harm you are doing to yourself through this horrendous activity. Previously, I have mentioned that there are solutions to stop biting nails. Well, first of all, try to stay relaxed and avoid too much stress and frustration. If you can’t, or not allowed to, then indulge yourself to physical exercise/activities that releases stress. You can go for manicures. That will make you feel guilty of spoiling your beautifully trimmed, polished nails. Put some nail polish and imagine the harm you are doing by biting into the varnishes.

And if you really want to chew on something then try sugar-free chewing gum. They might help you! Just stay away from biting your beautiful nails because when you do that it shows how anxious you stay all day. In public places with people around, it might not be a pretty sight.

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Get Fit with Stairs

Get Fit with Stairs

Get Fit with Stairs

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Here are some ways to incorporate stairs into your exercise routine for fat-burning and strength-building results.

Have you ever thought about utilizing stairs for your workouts? If not, you should because walking and/or running up stairs has numerous benefits, including fat-burning, cardiovascular conditioning, strength training and improved coordination.

Remember, exercise should be fun, so try and set yourself a challenge to keep motivated. See how many stairs or reps you can complete in a set amount of time to add an extra element of challenge, and try to beat your record each week. You could also set a ‘no elevator rule’ at the office to encourage others to take the stairs. Whatever you need to do in order to stay motivated and have fun is worthwhile, because every step counts when it comes to getting fit and shedding fat.

How to Get the Best Stair Climbing Results

Beginner Level: Moving into Your Fat-burning Zone

When you’re doing steady, prolonged aerobic exercise, your body turns fat into fuel. Keeping your exercise intensity at a moderate level requires discipline (especially for me, as I always want to sprint up). Using a heart rate monitor is helpful, or simply rate your intensity level on a scale of 1-10 and try to stay in your 6-8 range.

A basic walk up/walk down is a perfect introduction to stair training. Stepping for 20-30 minutes is ideal, but there’s no reason not to squeeze in stair training, even if you only have 10 minutes. (You know I always say that any exercise is better than no exercise!)

Adjust your walking speed to keep your heart rate in the target zone, and increase/decrease your speed to make sure you continue to push yourself and keep burning fat.

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Intermediate Level: Building Your Strength

I have talked before about the benefits of running up hill, and running up stairs is very similar in that it uses the posterior chain muscles (butt, hamstrings and calves). The gradient forces your body to work harder, compared to exercising on a flat surface. This increased workload burns extra calories, and the high-impact nature of running up steps promotes muscle building.

Sprint to the top of the stairs and slowly walk back down. Force yourself to take your time going down and concentrate on your movements. Doing timed intervals is a great way to enjoy sprint stair training. Try completing as many flights as you can in three minutes, followed by a 90 second rest. Do this for 5-8 rounds for a great strength training session.

Advanced Level: Push Your Power and Coordination

This style of stair training is considered advanced and is not recommended at the beginner or intermediate levels. To effectively train to improve power, try bounding up the stairs while skipping steps. This advanced approach is an effective power-builder and used a lot in athletic training. You can perform this as single leg hops or double leg jumps; it requires balance, concentration and co-ordination.

Try high-performance hops or jumps up 10 steps and then return to your starting point, aiming for a maximum of 10 total sets.

Because of the high impact nature of this type of exercise, I recommend working for a maximum of 20 minutes per session. If you want to challenge your upper body for the remaining workout time, do push-ups.

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