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Can You Eat As Much Fruit As You Want and Lose Weight?

Can You Eat As Much Fruit As You Want and Lose WeightAlthough most people accept that fruit is a healthy food, not every type of fruit is the same when it comes for being a good food choice for those on a weight loss diet. The HCG diet carefully limits the type of fruit that you can eat specifically to oranges, lemons, grapefruit, strawberries and apples because of the fact that these are some of the lower calorie fruits that have a lower glycemic index than others.

These fruits are not shown to cause weight gain when you eat them in small quantities, but the HCG diet carefully limits fruit servings which is crucial for weight loss. Fruit contains fructose which is also known as fruit sugar, and fructose can definitely lead to weight gain or stalled weight loss when you consume too much of it. The question of whether you can eat as much fruit as you want and lose weight is a somewhat complex one that is described in more detail below.

You have to be careful with your servings for almost any type of fruit

Although there are some fruits that are lower in their glycemic index as previously mentioned, you have to be careful with your fruit servings because several types have several grams of carbohydrates per serving. That means although those carbohydrates might be digested more slowly than other types of fruit with a higher glycemic index and won’t necessarily lead to an insulin spike, it still contains carbohydrates, and no matter what the glycemic index is of the food, too many carbohydrates in your diet will lead to weight gain.

For example, apples contain 25 grams of carbohydrates per serving and one cup of blueberries contains 21 grams of carbs per serving. Nutritionists recommend that you limit your carbohydrate intake to around anywhere from 0.8 to 1.25 grams per pound of body weight. So for a woman who weighs 140 pounds, her maximum carb intake would be around 112 to 175 grams per day.

Obviously this amount can be easily reached with more than a few servings of oranges or apples, and when combined with the other carbs that can come from your meals, the total number of carbs can very quickly add up and stall weight loss. However, in any case, it’s far better to eat low glycemic index fruit in larger quantities rather than processed foods, grains and starches, even if your intake exceeds 1.25 grams of carbohydrates per pound of body weight.

Focusing on calorie restriction works better than eating more fruit

Instead of focusing on eating more fruit in order to lose weight, it’s generally a better idea to restrict overall calories and limit carbohydrate intake which is why diets like the HCG work very well. Of course the HCG diet allows fruit consumption but as previously mentioned it is very limited.

Calorie restriction generally works better in terms of weight loss than switching your diet around and doing things like eating more fruits and vegetables, although both can certainly work. When you just make food changes in your diet without considering calories you have to be extra careful to monitor your calorie intake as previously mentioned, and there are other considerations to take into account like the glycemic index of the foods that you’re eating as well as their starch content.

Eating as much fruit as you want is a good idea if you haven’t been eating it

In spite of what we’ve said above about limiting your fruit intake in order to reduce your carbohydrate intake, if you haven’t been eating it at all you will definitely want to start adding more of it in your diet. It’s much better to get your carbohydrates from fruit because of the fiber, water content, and wide range of beneficial compounds like phenols and antioxidants that are in many types of fruit. These compounds along with additional vitamins and minerals make fruit a much better option for most of your carbohydrate intake compared to foods like grains, corn, starchy foods, and processed foods. There’s no question about that and fruits and vegetables both should be considered as viable alternatives to some of these unhealthy foods.

Be careful with the type of fruit that you eat

Along with being careful about the quantity of fruit that you eat, it’s also important to make sure that the type of fruit that you are eating is relatively low in sugar and has a low glycemic index if you’re trying to lose weight.

Examples of fruit with a higher glycemic index include dates, mangos, pineapples, bananas, figs and grapes. On the other hand, strawberries, apples, apricots, blueberries, grapefruit, limes, lemons, oranges, nectarines, peaches, pears, plums, cantaloupes and watermelon all have a relatively low glycemic load and make good options when you are trying to lose weight and consumed in moderation.

Most people are much better off eating more servings of fruit

For the majority of people, it’s better for them to eat multiple servings of low glycemic index fruit, the key is that it has to be low glycemic index. This is because most people simply don’t get enough fruits and vegetables in their diet on a regular basis, so making an effort to eat more will only benefit them by reducing their consumption of processed foods, grains, starches and other foods that can easily lead to weight gain.

So you don’t have to really worry a lot about eating too much fruit if you haven’t been eating it often, if you’ve been balancing it with vegetables and protein, and if you stick to lower glycemic index options. You most likely won’t gain weight and will likely start to lose a little bit of weight.

It’s actually really hard to eat too many low glycemic index fruits because of their high water content and filling fiber. You’ll find that you will fill up very quickly if you snack on fruit and that you probably won’t want to eat as often as you normally do.

This alone can cause weight loss in spite of the carbohydrate and fructose content of fruit. So feel free to enjoy some of the low glycemic load fruits we mentioned above but balance it out with low starch vegetables and protein and you’ll be very likely to lose weight or at least prevent weight gain while keeping your diet healthy and clean.

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8 Foods that Suppress Your Appetite

8 Foods that Suppress Your AppetiteWhen trying to stick to a low calorie diet, it is not uncommon to have feelings of intense hunger. The best way to attack hunger cravings is to give in and eat something. What you eat is what is important. You have to stay within your low calorie means and eat foods approved by your diet. But, at the same time, your food choices could dictate how full you feel and how long you can go before your next meal. The main key is to stick to foods that are water based or high in fiber, or both. Here are 8 foods that will suppress your appetite while you are waiting for the next meal of the day, and these foods can significantly help you maintain a healthy weight.

Appetite Suppressing Food #1 – Almonds

Nuts in general are high fiber foods and will help fill your belly. Almonds in particular are chock full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Just a quarter cup of almonds will do your body good, and stave off hunger for several hours.

Appetite Suppressing Food #2 – Oatmeal

Oatmeal has been proven to have many benefits. It is a good source of fiber for a healthy diet, which is one reason why it works so well as an appetite suppressant. Oatmeal is also heart healthy, lowering cholesterol and blood pressure.

In addition, oatmeal may hold some hidden benefits for you. The fiber fills you up, of course, but there may be an added bonus. In some people, oatmeal seems to help regulate an appetite regulating hormone. This can cause the oatmeal to keep you full even longer than the average person. It is a low calorie, low carb meal that will keep you from eating throughout the morning. All it takes is a half cup of oatmeal.

Appetite Suppressing Food #3 – Coffee

While not technically a food, coffee has to be on this list. Coffee is basically free on your diet. It’s just water with some beans flavoring it. As long as you don’t add anything to it, you can drink as much coffee as you want without worrying about going over your low calorie diet.

At the same time, coffee is an amazing appetite suppressant. Drinking coffee throughout the day will help lower the frequency and severity of your hunger pains. You will find that you can go through many more hours without meals, and when you do eat meals you will be able to eat less and be satisfied. Just remember that caffeine can have detrimental effects on some people depending on health conditions. Use caution and only drink moderate amounts if approved by your doctor.

Appetite Suppressing Food #4 – Apples

This is the superfood that will help you control your hunger and stick to your diet. Apples are a fruit that is accepted on nearly any low calorie diet. They have both fiber and they are water based, which gives your tummy a double whammy of satisfaction. They keep you full longer, and have relatively less carbs that other fruits.

Apples hold a few other benefits as well. They contain pectin, which helps regulate blood sugar. When your blood sugar is well regulated you will not feel as hungry as often. The apples will shut down sugar spikes that make you have hunger cravings

Appetite Suppressing Food #5 – Ginger

You have probably heard about how ginger is good for an upset stomach or to improve digestion. But have you thought about how that relates to your weight management? If your digestion is working properly, you may be able to control your appetite much easier than you think. The body can survive on much less than you think, and when the digestive system is functioning properly this is much more possible. In addition, ginger works as a stimulant for the body, boosting metabolism while staving off hunger.

Appetite Suppressing Food #6 – Avocados

This is an amazing food with low calories and high in fiber. Being high in fiber it obviously helps control hunger. However, it actually contains good fats that help lower your cholesterol. Those same fats send signals to your brain telling it that it is full!

Just remember two important things. First, avocados are only good in moderation. The fats they contain are good for you, but only in small amounts. Second, avocados are healthy, but that doesn’t mean that everything made with an avocado is on your diet. Guacamole, for example, is full of things other than avocados, and is generally high in fat content and packed with calories. Instead, try cutting up an avocado into a salad.

Appetite Suppressing Food #7 – Eggs

The incredible edible egg is an amazing food for dieters. It has about the same calories as a bagel (which is not allowed on most diets) so they have to be eaten in moderation. But eggs are extremely filling. Studies have shown that people who eat eggs for breakfast are more likely to go several hours without hunger, and they consume at least 300 fewer calories per day.

There are a lot of ways to eat eggs, but keep in mind that you are trying to stay on a low calorie diet. Make sure that you eat them in healthy ways. An omelet stuffed with cheese and sausage isn’t going to keep you on your diet. Hard boiled eggs are a good option, fried eggs if you don’t use oil or butter, or scrambled eggs are good options. Watch out for the extra calories in devilled eggs as well, which usually contain mayo and mustard

Appetite Suppressing Food #8 – Veggie Soup

Broth filled with vegetables can be extremely filling. Since most of the meal is water and fiber, the calorie content is nearly non existent. You can fill up on the stuff for a meal or sip a cup of it before meals to keep you from eating too much. The water and fiber will help you feel full for longer, and you can eat enough of it that you will mentally feel as though you had a complete meal.

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Why Sleep Is So Important For a Healthy Body

WWhy Sleep Is So Important For a Healthy Bodyhen you are trying to lose weight you generally concentrate on two things: diet and exercise. But you might be missing an important aspect of your diet and weight loss. Good, healthy sleep is vital to losing weight and maintaining a healthy body.

If you don’t get enough sleep you could be undoing everything you are trying to achieve through diet and exercise. You have to be able to maintain good sleep hygiene in order to be successful in your weight loss efforts and maintain a healthy body weight. Sleep is a key factor that many people are missing in their regimen.

Your dietary habits change when you don’t get enough sleep

When you don’t get enough sleep, your body’s dietary habits change. You don’t just feel tired. Your body is tired. And it feels like it has to make up for that with food intake. If you get less than 7 hours of sleep each night, you could be very unsuccessful in your weight loss efforts.

When you don’t get adequate sleep, you will feel hungrier and meals will be less satisfying. You will find yourself eating more calories, even if you stick to the healthy foods you planned to eat. The more calories you take in, the less likely it is that you will lose weight, and you won’t be able to maintain a healthy weight. You will also have even more severe cravings for the foods you are trying to avoid than you usually do.

A lack of sleep also causes your body to lose less fat, even though you follow a strict diet and exercise program. In a study done by Annals of Internal Medicine it was discovered that people who do not get enough sleep have about half the fat loss of people with sleep, even though they were on the same diet and exercise regimen.

Not getting enough sleep affects your ability to exercise

Not getting enough sleep also affects your ability to get adequate exercise to boost your weight loss efforts. You will lack the energy to exercise effectively. You may decide to skip a day altogether because you are just too tired to go to the gym. If you don’t skip a day, your workout will be less effective. You will be moving slower and your muscles won’t be up to handling as much weight as usual.

You won’t be able to exercise as long as you normally would as well. You will wear out much quicker than if you are fully rested. While you may usually do a 40 minute cardio workout, without enough sleep you will likely only be able to do half that. If you push yourself to finish the workout anyway, your body will be stressed and produce cortisol. This is a hormone that makes you store fat, reduces your metabolism, and blocks the production of growth hormone.

A lack of sleep will also affect the results of your workouts. Most exercise is aimed at building muscle, not just losing fat. In order to build muscle, your workouts are designed to break that muscle down so that it can build back up to be stronger than before. But growth hormone, the hormone responsible for that muscle build up, is severely decreased when you don’t get enough sleep.

Not sleeping enough changes how your body stores fat

Sleep also changes the way your body stores fat. When you don’t get enough sleep, your fat cells become “groggy” just as you are. It slows your metabolism dramatically. This is because sleep depravation causes severe changes in how your body produces and uses insulin. A lack of sleep disrupts insulin production, which causes fat to store in the cells.

This happens because insulin causes your body to process lipids, or fats, in a way that keeps them from building up in the cells and body. When insulin production is disrupted, metabolism slows and those lipids are not able to be flushed out and used. This leads to more lipids clinging to cells and causing you to gain weight.

And remember that pesky cortisol? It is released when your body is under stress, which it often is when you are not getting enough sleep. When your body is stressed, cortisol is released, and that makes fat cling to your cells. There is a reason it is called the fat storage hormone. If you want to avoid it, good sleep is a must.

Not sleeping enough changes your appetites

There are two hormones that control appetite. Leptin makes you less hungry and boosts your metabolism. Ghrelin slows your metabolism and stimulates hunger. In order to have successful weight loss and maintain a healthy weight you have to control both hormones.

When you don’t get enough sleep that becomes impossible. When you don’t get enough sleep, the area of your brain that controls hunger flips a switch and makes you very hungry. It also reduces the amount of leptin your body produces while increasing the amount of ghrelin your body makes.

The end result of this scientific marvel is that if you don’t get enough sleep, you are never going to lose weight or control your hunger. You will always feel hungry and be more likely to follow through on food cravings. Worse, your metabolism will be slower so you will burn those extra calories at a much slower rate.

Sleep can affect your decision making

We all know that our brains don’t function on the higher levels when we are really tired. Sleep depravation affects the frontal lobe of the brain, where decisions are made. It is much harder to convince yourself to stay on your diet, avoid binges, exercise, weigh in, and do the other things you need to do to lose weight when your decision making abilities are not at their best.

Think of it like being drunk. When you are drunk you make poor choices. You know that something is wrong, but decide what the heck I’m going to do it anyway. A lack of sleep has much the same effect on the brain and decision making. You know you shouldn’t have that piece of cake, but your brain says, aw, come one, one slice won’t hurt. Be sure that you’re getting enough sleep and make it a point to sneak in extra sleeping time if you’ve found that you are negatively affected by a lack of sleep.



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8 Healthy Habits for a Healthy Weight

8 Healthy Habits for a Healthy WeightWatching your weight can seem like a chore, but a few lifestyle changes can make a huge difference. They say it takes 30 days to develop a habit. If you start today, you could have a healthier you in just one month. These healthy habits for a healthy weight that you need to develop really aren’t difficult, and they will help you lose weight and maintain a healthy weight once you reach your goals

Healthy Weight Habit #1 – Don’t skip breakfast!

You’re probably tired of hearing about how breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but it really is true. Breakfast wakes up your metabolism and gives your body fuel for the day. You are less likely to binge for lunch or dinner if you don’t skip this meal. It is proven that 90 percent of the healthiest people eat breakfast every morning.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that you should eat a breakfast sandwich or pancakes every day. A healthy breakfast is a must. Break out the eggs, egg white omelets, oatmeal, fruit and yogurt.

Healthy Weight Habit #2 – Track Everything You Eat and When You Eat It

Track not only everything you eat, but when you eat it. You’ll be amazed at what you discover about your own eating habits. This goes beyond calorie counting. This is about discovering when you eat the most, and why it happens. It’s about figuring out what your triggers are that make you eat that bowl of ice cream, or what stressors you have that caused you to miss a meal entirely. As you get better about tracking your food intake, you can go back and see patterns easily.

This is the first step in making lasting lifestyle changes. You have to be able to understand where the problems lie in order to correct them. Going back through your diet logs and seeing when and where you have eaten the foods and behaviors you want to avoid will help you develop a plan with new habits that will help you lose weight and maintain a healthy weight.

Healthy Weight Habit #3 – Exercise Often

Exercise is key. Not everyone is cut out to be a marathon runner. You may have real physical problems that keep you from exercising in the way most people consider. You may not have the time or ability to go to the gym. You may not have the knees or stamina for a run. You may not have the flexibility for aerobics. Don’t let any of that stop you.

Truthfully, there is some form of exercise for everyone. Even if you just go for a brisk quarter mile walk it will be something. It’s a starting point. If you have a lot of joint problems, you can try water aerobics or swimming. These are great activities that burn a lot of calories but are very low impact. These activities also build muscle and help you burn fat, all while you enjoy relief of your aching joints.

Healthy Weight Habit #4 – Eat Multiple Meals

Eat several regular meals a day. Don’t skip any meals, and try to split up your meals into smaller amounts. It is better to eat six small meals each day than to eat three large meals. It is even better to eat three large meals rather than one huge meal in which you binge because you haven’t eaten all day. The longer you wait between meals the hungrier you’ll be, and that means less control over food portions and food choices. You are much more likely to go for that double cheeseburger if you skipped breakfast and lunch, but if you ate breakfast and a deli sandwich, your dinner might be more like a salad or grilled chicken.

Healthy Weight Habit #5 – Monitor Your Weight

The scales don’t lie. We are all afraid of that number, especially if we’ve had a bad week. But it is important to weigh yourself at least once a week to make sure you aren’t experiencing any dramatic changes in your weight. If you are on a weight loss program you may want to weigh more often. Knowing that you shouldn’t have binged all week might be in the back of your mind, but seeing the results on the scale can help give you a reality check and get you back on track.

One word of advice. Do not weigh when you are bloated. Ladies, if it’s that time of the month, skip your weigh in. If there is any reasonable explanation for an inaccurate reading of your weight, skip that day’s weigh in. Unreliable weigh ins can discourage you or give you false hope. Make sure that you are certain your weight is accurate before using it as a basis for making dietary decisions.

Healthy Weight Habit #6 – Eat Mindfully

Eat mindfully. This means that while you are eating, that is the only thing that you are doing. Eat from a plate, at a table. Do not watch television, movies, play on your phone, or do anything else while you are eating. Take each bite individually and chew completely before going to the next bite. Continue until your plate is empty. When you do other things while you eat it is easy to eat without thinking about it. You eat too quickly, and too much.

Healthy Weight Habit #7 – Eat More At Home

Eat more meals at home and fewer out and about. People who are the healthiest eat home cooked meals. You can cook much healthier at home than you can eat in restaurants. The same meal cooked at home can be much healthier than the restaurant version based on the ingredients you use or the way you cook it. Baking salmon in oil is not as good for you as grilling it at home. You can use less oil, less salt, and less sugar in your cooking than you will find in restaurants.

Healthy Weight Habit #8 – Listen to Your Body

Listen to your body. If your body says that it is hungry, eat a yogurt or piece of fruit even if it’s not a meal time. If your body says it is full when you are trying to eat a meal, don’t force it. If your body is restless, go exercise. If your body is worn down, get some extra sleep. The healthiest people listen to their bodies and take action accordingly. If you want to maintain a healthy weight, you have to learn your body’s cues.

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How Stress Causes Weight Gain

How Stress Causes Weight GainIt is amazing how the body works. Hundreds of thousands of years of evolution have led to the humans that we are today. For the most part that’s a good thing. But when it comes to stress and how our bodies react to it, the benefits end. Stress is one of our worst enemies when it comes to weight gain and it has a significant negative impact on our bodies in several ways, especially chronic stress. To put it simply, stress causes weight gain, and the reasons why are described below.

The Science

In ancient times when humans were fighting off enemies for survival, adrenaline was the perfect response. It charges you, makes you feel wired and ready for anything. It tenses up your muscles and frees your inhibitions so that you can better face whatever it is you are trying to fight or run away from. Once the adrenaline is gone, cortisol would come to take its place. This helped the body recover from its efforts by taking in more food and storing it for future use.

The link between stress and weight gain lies in this ancient cycle. We have come a long way, and no longer have fight or flight situations on a daily basis. But we do encounter stress in many forms. You might be a busy mom, an overworked executive, or just struggling through life. Whatever the source of your stress may be, it activates the same cycle.

Thus, when you are stressed your body produces adrenaline. You don’t want to eat, you get jittery, and you push through to get things done. But when the immediate stress is over, the cortisol kicks in. Cortisol is often called the stress hormone. When stress reaches its height and the adrenaline wears off, this hormone makes you want to eat a horse. Worse, it takes everything you eat and stores it as fat.

The Psychology

This is just the science behind why stress causes weight gain. There are many other factors. As a society we have come to think of food as comfort. We all have “comfort foods” that we head for as soon as we get stressed out. These foods are usually linked to feelings of comfort and happiness as a child. One person’s comfort food might be ice cream. Another person’s comfort food might be tacos. It just depends on the person and their individual memories and experiences.

Undoubtedly, comfort foods are almost always the most lacking in nutrition. They are usually high in calories, fat and sugar. They are usually highly processed foods that offer little in the way of nutritional value and a lot in the way of taste. But, when cortisol makes us eat and we eat these unhealthy comfort foods, the problem is compounded. Not only is our body already storing all of the fat we are consuming, but we are adding extra fat to the equation.

According to the American Psychological Association, about 40 percent of those surveyed respond to stress and anxiety by eating unhealthy foods or overeating in general. It is no wonder then, with today’s high stress on the go mentality, that obesity is becoming an American epidemic. It is simply that common to eat when you are stressed.

The Solution

There are a lot of things you can do to help alleviate stress other than eat. Developing good coping skills and habits will help you avoid food and put you in a better position to avoid weight gain. Deep breathing, exercise, and meditation are all on the list. You might do some crafts, read a book, go for a walk, or engage in a hobby. Whatever you find relaxing should be sufficient. All you have to do is stay away from the food.

Don’t keep comfort foods on hand. It is much harder to reach for a tub of ice cream or a bag of potato chips in a fit of stress if you have to get in the car and go get it from the grocery store. By the time you get dressed and find your keys, you will have had time to think better of it and find a different way to relieve your stress.

If you spend a lot of time in the car, on the road, or in the office, keep some healthy snacks around. Only carry what you must in the form of money or cash. The hardest part about always being on the go is that there is a fast food restaurant on nearly every corner. You have to avoid those places like the plague. It can be difficult, but eating some peanut butter crackers on the go is a whole lot better than eating a Big Mac.

For the most part, it is about making a conscious effort to avoid emotional or stressful eating. You have to be committed to the effort. You have to tell yourself daily that you will not give in. You have to give yourself other options, ways to eliminate your stress or alleviate it in some way that doesn’t require you to eat unhealthy foods.

In fact, if you can avoid eating for a few hours after the adrenaline has stopped you are much better off. By that time the cortisol will not be in full swing, and your body will store less of what you are eating. But you still need to make sure you are eating healthy foods, not comfort foods.

You can also find alternatives to your favorite comfort foods. Instead of reaching for ice cream, reach for a low fat yogurt. When you want potato chips and French onion dip, skip the chips and reach for the carrots instead. When you want something salty and crunchy, go for some popcorn with a bit of salt. There are a lot of foods that will satisfy sweet and salty cravings without going over your calorie count or sending you on an eating binge.

When you find ways to cope with your stress, and recognize the effect of stress on weight gain, you can easily overcome this obstacle. You do not have to be a slave to your stress. Take the reins, and you will stop the weight gain.

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8 Easy Ways to Burn 100 Calories

8 Easy Ways to Burn 100 CaloriesBurning 100 calories doesn’t seem like much. But in the long run you have to be able to burn as many calories a day as you take in to maintain your current weight. If you are trying to lose weight, you have to burn more calories than you take in. If you are serious about your health and your weight loss, you’re probably already on an exercise routine. But the fact of the matter is that you can’t rely on exercise alone to burn all of those calories. Your body can only take so much abuse.

Still, you have to burn those extra calories somewhere.To that end, anywhere you can burn an extra 100 calories without hardly trying is a benefit. And, if you burn the calories 100 at a time, you likely won’t even notice the effort. Plus burning calories while performing other useful activities helps you maintain your weight or lose weight while also getting other tasks accomplished, which makes you feel better and makes your whole family happier in the long run.

Method #1 To Burn 100 Calories – Running

You don’t have to be a marathon runner to burn a good amount of calories. Running for just 20 minutes is more beneficial than walking on a treadmill. If it’s a warm day, take your run outside. Run around the block a few times and you will have reached your goal. Twenty minutes burns 100 calories. If it feels good, keep going to burn more. Also, if you live near a beach you will burn an extra 50 calories in that 20 minutes by running on the sand due to the additional resistance. To make it an even better exercise try jogging uphill for a period of time and resting when you need to.

Method #2 To Burn 100 Calories – Dancing

“You can dance if you want to. You can dance the night away!” Dancing is just as beneficial as running, and a lot more fun! You can have a spur of the moment dance party in your living room when you get home from work to release tension. Have a dance party with your kids to help keep them entertained. Do a little dance before bed. Twenty minutes of dancing burns the same 100 calories as 20 minutes of running. And it’s a lot more fun!

Method #3 To Burn 100 Calories – Cleaning

Getting into that cleaning groove can help you easily burn 100 calories, and you’ll have a clean house to show for it. Constant movement while scrubbing every inch of your bathroom will burn 100 calories or more. Cleaning other rooms in your house while listening to music, dancing and singing can also burn a fair amount of calories. Your body will thank you, your family will thank you, and with all of that rewarding hard work you will thank yourself.

Method #4 To Burn 100 Calories Working Outside

Vigorous yard work, raking leaves, pulling weeds or mowing the lawn can burn 100 calories in just 10 minutes. Working in a garden digging around in the dirt to pull weeds and plant bulbs can also burn 100 calories in just 20 minutes. The key here is not to dilly dally. You have to keep moving at a relatively fast pace to burn those calories with these activities. You’ll get the chores done faster, and have more to show for it than just a pretty yard.

Method #5 To Burn 100 Calories – Read

Read to burn calories? Really? You might think this is ridiculous. How can just sitting with a book burn calories? The fact of the matter is that your brain is like a muscle and it gets stronger with practice, although that in and of itself doesn’t burn calories. But when you are reading you are moving somewhat, turning pages and holding the book, and that takes muscle use as well. In the end, reading for 65 minutes straight will burn 100 calories! You can read anything you like, a novel or a magazine, or even a textbook. Reading is a great way to relax and expand the mind, while also burning a few extra calories in the process.

Method #6 To Burn 100 Calories – Home Décor

You can hang or rehang pictures on your walls for 30 minutes to burn 100 calories. The pictures may not weigh much, but bending, stooping, lifting, holding up the pictures and hammering nails and picture hangers can really burn up some calories in a hurry. You can give your home a mini makeover, finally get some of that artwork hung, change the look of your home, rotate family photos, or just add some pizazz to your home décor. All of this, and you burn 100 calories as well.

Method #7 To Burn 100 Calories – Swimming

Swimming is a relaxing form of exercise, and one that works the entire body. You may not even feel like you are exercising at the time, but when you get done your body feels heavier. There’s a reason for that. Just 10 minutes of swimming burns over 100 calories. Most health clubs and community centers have an indoor pool where you can free swim at certain times of day for a relatively low cost. If you swim at the beach against a current you’ll burn even more calories. Swimming also helps regulate blood sugar and is one of the best cardio workouts you can get with minimal effort.

Method #8 To Burn 100 Calories – Vacuuming

This household chore burns at least 100 calories. Go on a vacuuming spree and vacuum every floor in your home. For every 30 minutes of vacuuming you will burn at least 100 calories. If you harden your abs while vacuuming you can even get a bit of a core workout and burn even more calories in the process. Your home will never look cleaner. To get more out of your vacuuming workout, vacuum each room twice: once to clean it, and the other to put some designs into the carpet by vacuuming against the grain.

Hopefully these methods will give you some good ideas on how to burn 100 calories. Remember that every little bit helps when you are trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight, and many of these methods you can fit into the busiest of lifestyles but you have to make an effort.


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Top 7 Vegetables for Weight Loss

Top 7 Vegetables for Weight LossIt is no secret that eating healthy will help you lose weight, nor is it a secret that vegetables are a major part of that healthy diet. But interestingly enough, some vegetables are actually boosters to your weight loss. Instead of going for the same old veggies, try some of these organic vegetable goodness that will boost your weight loss while keeping your diet balanced.

Weight Loss Vegetable #1 – Peppers

It is often said that hot peppers can help you burn calories faster, but there’s no need to stress your palette. Mild peppers can do the exact same thing. Peppers contain dihydrocapsiate, a compound that boosts the metabolism. Red and green peppers also contain a lot of vitamin c, which helps boost weight loss and your immune system. You can throw in some red or green peppers into your diet in the easiest of ways. Add them to tacos, pasta, salads or omelets. Bell peppers are also a good metabolism boosting snack dipped in some hummus.

Weight Loss Vegetable #2 – Cucumber

This simple veggie is a great one for weight loss. It is filling but because it is mostly water it is low calorie and boosts weight loss. You may think that cucumbers are a boring vegetable only good on salads. Not so! You can slice them up onto sandwiches, put them in omelets, grill them, and use them in just about any way you would use zucchini. (Which is also a great vegetable for weight loss, and in the same family.)

Weight Loss Vegetable #3 – Broccoli

This is one of the vegetables considered a super food. Broccoli is chock full of antioxidants that help fight off various cancers and illnesses. But it is also amazing for weight loss. This is because it contains a phytonutrient called sulforaphane that keeps your body from storing fat. It is itself a low fat, low calorie vegetable, but full of slow burning carbs that can give you long lasting energy. Broccoli can be used in a lot of ways. You can add it to salads, omelets, and pastas. You can steam it, add a bit of low fat cheese, or dip it in some low fat low calorie veggie dip.

Weight Loss Vegetable #4 – Spinach

There’s a good reason that this leafy green vegetable was chosen by Popeye. When you are working out it is the best vegetable you can eat. It is full of protein, with a serving having about the same amount of protein as a hard-boiled egg. The protein and other compounds in the spinach also help you avoid cravings, feel more full, and promote weight loss. There are a million ways to eat spinach. Fresh spinach is best, as the canned variety has most of the nutrients cooked out of it. You can boil spinach and flavor with a bit of butter or some natural seasonings. You can eat raw spinach in salads and on sandwiches. You can also steam it and flavor it with lemon and spices.

Weight Loss Vegetable #5 – Beans

Sometimes beans are categorized as a vegetable even though they are legumes, so for the purposes of this article we’ll call them a vegetable and consider their weight loss benefits. The best thing about beans is that they give you slow burning carbs for energy without the calories and fat, while also giving you the protein source that stops cravings, makes you feel full, and promotes weight loss. They are also an excellent source of fiber, which helps with overall weight loss as well. There are many ways to incorporate beans into your diet. You can make black bean veggie burgers, chili, bean casseroles, stews, burritos, tacos, and nearly any other dish that uses ground beef. Beans are an excellent substitute for ground beef because you get the protein without the fat.

Weight Loss Vegetable #6 Onions

You would be amazed at what this flavorful vegetable can do! It is a great addition to any diet for someone needing to monitor cardiovascular health or blood glucose levels. For someone who is exercising routinely (or excessively) for weight loss, this means that you can get an extra boost to your health to balance out the stress put on your body by exercise. They are also low calorie and can be added to just about anything. Try adding more onions to your diet by throwing them in eggs, potatoes, stews, chili, soups, and other vegetables. You can add them to omelets and other dishes as well. Just remember to use fresh onion, not the fake stuff you buy in a can.

Weight Loss Vegetable #7 Carrots

There is a reason that every career dieter turns to carrots first. First of all, they are an excellent source of fiber. They are low calorie and still give you energy. They help you maintain regularity and stave off fat storage. Best of all, they are the best munchy ever for a dieter.

If you are one of those absent minded eaters that eats a lot of cookies, candy or chips, carrots are a must have staple for your weight loss goals. You can sit and munch on carrot sticks to your heart’s content and never worry about your calorie intake, and still feel as though you are satisfied with your snacking habits. Just remember that the carrots are what are good for you, not necessarily what you put on them. If you are going to dip the carrots, do so in something that is also low calorie, low fat, and healthy. Hummus is a good option, as is apple sauce. Avoid veggie dips with high fat contents. Watch your labels, and remember that moderation is key when dealing with carrot toppers.

Try to incorporate several fruits and vegetables into your diet for weight loss

Of course, any vegetables are great for a weight loss plan and a well balanced diet. You should incorporate a wide variety of low fat, low calorie, high fiber fruits and vegetables into your daily diet. The more variety you have the more likely it will be that you will stick to your diet for the long haul.

If you find yourself getting tired of the same old thing but still want to take advantage of these seven amazing vegetables, hop online and search for some recipes. You’ll be amazed at how many ways you can use these vegetables separately and together in various recipes.

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Drinks That Can Help You Lose Weight

Drinks That Can Help You Lose WeightWe all know that fluids are an important part of a healthy diet. Fluids become even more important when you are trying to lose weight. But not all fluids are good for you when you are facing this daunting task. Sodas, many teas, and other drinks will hinder your weight loss efforts. However, on the flip side of this there are many drinks that can help you lose weight more effectively.


One of the biggest things you can do to make the most impact in your weight loss is to drink plenty of water. You have probably heard this before. The more water you drink, the more toxins and fats you flush from your body. It is common that much of the weight we carry around is water weight. By flushing your system you can lose weight rapidly.

Some people think that drinking lemon water is helpful. In truth, the lemon simply gives it a bit of flavor and helps detox your body, and only minimally. Instead of getting that lemon, add some extra ice to your water. The cold water makes your body work harder to maintain its core temperature, which can help you burn up to 100 more calories per day.

If you really miss your soda pop and teas, try adding flavors to your water. You can purchase zero calorie water add ins at your grocery store. Just a few drops to an ice cold bottle of water can make you feel like you are getting a treat, when really you are drinking the best thing possible for your body. If you are bad about drinking enough water, flavoring your water in this way can make it easier and make it seem less like a chore.

Just remember to look on the nutrition facts of these flavor add ins. Don’t choose ones loaded with sugar and carbohydrates.  The Kool-Aid and Welch’s add ins tend to have a lot of sugar included. If you are into really being healthy and avoiding chemicals and words you can’t pronounce, you’re still better off drinking just plain water.

There are different kinds of water to drink as well. Don’t be fooled into thinking that drinks such as Gatorade are a replacement for water. These are very high in sugar and add many more calories than you will be able to burn. If you want something with electrolytes, there are unflavored bottles of water that offer this advantage.

For the best health, choose filtered tap water or bottled water from specific sources. Watch the sources and filtration methods on bottled water. You will be surprised at how many of them are simply tap water poured into a bottle. Unless you’re big on spring water, investing in a water filter at your tap or a Britta pitcher is your best bet. You can keep your ice water cold with some very inexpensive reusable water bottles. This is easier on your wallet, and better for the environment.


Surprisingly, coffee can help you lose weight. First, it is a diuretic, which means it makes you urinate more frequently. This can be dehydrating, but if you drink plenty of water it is beneficial. Again, it helps flush toxins and shed water weight. But coffee does more than just that.

Coffee raises your heart rate and helps you burn more calories during your workout. If you drink one to three cups of coffee before your workout you will burn more calories, and you will see results from your efforts more quickly.

The key to drinking coffee for weight loss is that you can’t add much to it. You have to drink it black. At the most, add a bit of zero calorie sweetener such as Stevia to your coffee for taste. The cream, milk and sugar that most people add to their coffee adds too many calories, and does more harm than good. If you can’t drink your coffee black, you shouldn’t use this as a diet drink.

Green Tea

Green tea has a lot of wonderful properties, making it one of the best health drinks to consume on a regular basis and a great choice for weight loss. It has antioxidants that help you flush toxins from your system and prevent further toxins from building up. It increases your metabolism and helps you burn fat more effectively. Studies have shown that drinking green tea daily over two months can earn you an extra six pounds of weight loss.

As with drinking coffee, you have to be careful about what is in your green tea. Many of the bottled green tea that you find in the stores and convenience marts are packed with flavors and additives that make the benefits useless. Sugar, chemicals and other flavorings detract from the usefulness of green tea as a weight loss drink.

The best way to drink green tea is fresh brewed yourself. Do not add milk, honey or sugar to your green tea. If you need to have some flavor, add some no calorie Stevia. Green tea may not taste the best, but it will help you boost your weight loss.

Protein Shakes

When you feel that nag of hunger and it is hours before your next meal, it is difficult to avoid snacking. When that feeling comes around, reach for a protein shake. They are often full of nutrients, primarily protein that makes you feel more full. However, you have to be careful with these as well.

Many protein shakes are packed with sugar and carbohydrates. You have to look for the ones that will have the least impact on your calorie intake while having the most impact on your hunger. Read the nutrition facts on any protein shake you consider. SlimFast has the most sugar.

There are several organic or natural protein shake brands including the meal replacements at Nu Image Medical which taste like milk but are not actually a milk based product. These shakes have the least amount of added calories and fat, but gives you a fuller feeling that will get you to your next meal without snacking on foods that are going to limit your weight loss. These shakes are a good option for weight loss and can definitely make it easier for you to maintain a healthy weight when you consume them on a regular basis.


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8 Healthy Late Night Snacks

8 Healthy Late Night SnacksHaving a list of healthy snacks is always a good idea even when you aren’t on a diet, but in particular it’s important that you eat something healthy if you’re going to eat anything during the evening. The best option is to not eat at all when you’re about to head to bed if you can help it. If you are in the habit of eating something before bed, at the very least make sure that it’s something relatively healthy that won’t cause your insulin and blood sugar levels to spike, as that can cause all kinds of metabolic and weight gain issues. These are 8 healthy late night snacks that are great alternatives to some of the less healthy options out there.

Healthy Late Night Snack #1 – Organic Protein Shake

A natural organic protein shake is definitely one of the better options as a late night meal. Just be sure that it is not sweetened with any artificial sweeteners. You are better off using an organic unsweetened whey protein product and adding your own natural sweetener like stevia or a small amount of fruit. Don’t use any sugar or honey or maple syrup in your late night snacks or protein shakes as they can easily lead to weight gain since they are a simple carbohydrate source. With any of these late night snacks it’s essential that you avoid adding anything simple carbs whenever possible, but a protein shake offers a steady source of nutrition that is satisfying and it’s even better when you exercised earlier.

Healthy Late Night Snack #2 – Cherries

There aren’t many foods that contain melatonin, the compound that helps your body regulate its internal clock, but cherries are one of them. Because of that they are a good choice for a late night snack, but because of their high sugar content you need to be careful not to eat too many of them. Tart cherries have a high melatonin content and are a good option, and you can mix them with a bit of Greek yogurt or to add them into a whey protein smoothie. They might help you fall asleep as well if you’ve had struggles with that, but don’t become too reliant on them as a sleep aid because eating high sugar fruit before bed can cause weight gain.

Healthy Late Night Snack #3 – Low Fat String Cheese

A piece of low fat string cheese is the perfect choice for a healthy late night snack. Be sure that you choose a low fat option but string cheese has about 7 to 9 grams of protein per serving and just 85 calories, with a small amount of those calories coming from fat. Try to find organic string cheese when possible, as other types of string cheese may contain growth hormones or antibiotics which are definitely not good to consume. Just one piece of string cheese can be very satisfying and help to curb your hunger right before bed, and it won’t lead to weight gain as long as you aren’t eating too many of them.

Healthy Late Night Snack #4 – Low Fat Cottage Cheese

If you like cottage cheese it’s a great option for a late night snack for the same reasons that low fat string cheese is. Low fat cottage cheese has a whopping 28 grams of protein per cup, but you do have to be careful about the sodium content which can be relatively high for several varieties. Again picking an organic brand is important because of the lack of hormones, but a half of a cup of cottage cheese with some fruit or your other favorite addition is an excellent choice for a late night snack because of the high blood sugar stabilizing protein.

Healthy Late Night Snack #5 – Almonds

Almonds are definitely a good choice as a healthy late night snack for their many health benefits. Almonds contain healthy monounsaturated fat which is actually good for you and isn’t associated with weight gain and inflammation like other types of unhealthy fat found in junk foods and processed foods. You won’t want to eat more than a few before bed because they are definitely high in calories, but they are a great source of vitamins, minerals and protein. A half cup of almonds has 10 grams of protein but they do have 265 calories per half cup, so eating ¼ cup or so is better prior to sleeping and it will usually be very satisfying so you probably won’t even want to eat more than this.

Healthy Late Night Snack #6 – Pistachios

Pistachios are a good healthy late night snack for many of the same reasons that almonds are, and again you’ll want to be careful not to eat too many of them, but just a small handful can hold you over and keep you satisfied before bed. Because they are low in carbohydrates they won’t cause weight gain and they are a good source of healthy monounsaturated fat which can improve your healthy cholesterol levels. One half cup of pistachios has 346 calories so you won’t want to eat that many, but 1/5 to ¼ cup should be fine. They also provide 12.5 grams of protein per half cup as well as several vitamins and minerals which can help you maintain a healthy weight. Pistachio consumption is also associated with a number of cardiovascular benefits.

Healthy Late Night Snack #7 – Dark Chocolate

Low sugar dark chocolate is a great choice for a late night snack that you won’t have to feel too guilty about. Dark chocolate contains powerful antioxidants that can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease and other illnesses. It can even help to lower your blood pressure, and can improve blood flow. Dark chocolate also helps to curb your appetite and studies have found that it contributes to feelings of satiety after meals or when eaten alone as a snack. A study in the Netherlands found that dark chocolate lowered levels of ghrelin while decreasing insulin resistance. Ghrelin is a hormone that increases appetite, and the study even found that the participants who smelled the chocolate had lower levels of ghrelin [1].

Healthy Late Night Snack #8 – Eggs

Eggs don’t have to be just a breakfast food, and they are a great high protein and low calorie snack before bed. Just be careful to avoid adding anything else into your egg meal that can cause weight gain like grains or bread. Just one or two hard boiled eggs are a perfect late night snack perhaps with a few low calorie condiments. 1 egg has 78 calories with 6 grams of protein, and the protein can help to reduce your appetite before you get a chance to eat again in the morning. Avoid adding any butter or any unhealthy fat to your late night egg recipes; if you do have to cook with fat use a small amount of olive or coconut oil but again you’ll want to be extremely careful with your fat intake prior to sleeping.

It’s best to avoid eating too late

If you are in the habit of eating before bed you should do everything that you can to eliminate it. These healthy snacks are far better than most late night snack options but they can definitely lead to weight gain if you eat too many of them right before sleeping. Remember that your body is winding down once you’re about to sleep and anything that you are eating isn’t going to be used as fuel right away. A high protein meal may be a good choice when you’ve exercised earlier in the day in order to rebuild your muscle, but other than that you should mostly avoid eating too close to your bedtime.


[1] – http://livehealthy.chron.com/effects-dark-chocolate-reducing-weight-5330.html

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How to Lose Stubborn Fat At Any Age

LHow to Lose Stubborn Fat At Any Ageosing fat is a constant battle no matter what age you are and although it gets harder as you get older it definitely doesn’t mean that it’s impossible. As you get older it becomes more and more important for you to eat right and take care of your health, and it can make a significant difference in the amount of weight that you lose. There are several ways that you can lose weight even as you get older, and the HCG diet is certainly one of the best options to lose weight quickly no matter what age you are, but there are other methods that can at the very least help you maintain a healthy weight.

Your metabolism slows by about 5% each decade

The main reason why weight loss becomes more difficult as we get older is because of the fact that your metabolism slows by around 5 percent every decade. This equates to about 75 fewer calories per day at age 35 compared to 25. This small amount can easily be compensated for with exercise and dieting, but it’s essential that you make a conscious effort to do this rather than assume that you’ll have the same metabolism as you did when you were younger. Essentially, as you get older it becomes more important to make wiser choices with the food that you eat and your choice of habits in terms of exercise and physical activity.

Stay active at every age

It’s essential that you stay active as you get older. Too many adults sacrifice exercise for their work or other obligations which is always a mistake. Living a sedentary lifestyle takes its toll on your health and your waistline even when you are younger, and the effect is worse once you get older. So don’t make any excuses for avoiding exercise; it doesn’t take very long to get a decent workout and it will pay off in dividends in terms of keeping you healthy and avoiding weight gain as you get older. Every little bit of exercise counts including walking or biking to work when you can, taking the stairs, and walking as much as you can when you get the opportunity, so take advantage of the chances that you get to exercise.

Try high intensity interval training

High intensity interval training is one of the best short duration exercises that you can do, and there are plenty of different programs available that you can try. It’s one of the best ways to feel and look great as you get older because it helps to balance your hormones and increases your natural production of HGH, and this is essential when you are trying to stay healthy. High intensity interval training works very well to boost your HGH production and it also works well at burning fat, as numerous studies have shown, and it can certainly help you lose weight around your midsection, thighs and other areas that might be more difficult for you.

Get more protein in your diet

As you get older it’s essential that you are getting enough protein in your diet, and it can definitely help you burn more calories and also maintain your muscle mass when you are cutting fat. Be sure that you are getting high quality protein in every meal, and try to always keep nuts, a protein shake or something with you for a healthy high protein snack. It will make a significant difference in your appetite on a regular basis as well, and you’ll find that you aren’t hungry as often when you are getting enough protein on a regular basis. This means that you’ll be less likely to want to snack on junk food and that can make a significant difference when you’re trying to cut calories out of your diet.

Cut down your portions

Many people including younger people eat way too much per meal. Even when you aren’t dieting it’s a good idea to cut down your portion sizes, especially if you haven’t been trying this strategy for weight loss. Try reducing your portions anywhere from 10% to 25%. Just take your normal portion size and reduce it, and replace it with a healthier starter like a piece of fruit or salad. This way you aren’t going to be sacrificing on nutrition at all, but it can end up saving you up to 200 or 300 calories from each meal, and that amount can definitely help you with losing stubborn weight, even when you aren’t on a low calorie diet.

Get up and move around when you can

Many adults work at desk jobs that can make them very sedentary and this can end up being a major problem when it comes to weight loss. Being sedentary makes a bad diet even worse, and it can even cause weight gain when your diet is mostly good. So it’s essential that you make an effort to be more active when you are at work whenever possible. Health experts recommend that you take a 5 minute break about every hour; just getting up and stretching a few minutes and walking around is very effective at combating a sedentary lifestyle, but on top of this you need to diet and exercise of course.

Watch your weight and check your body fat

As you get older it becomes more important for you to watch your weight and be more careful about your weight fluctuations, although it’s always important to do this. You don’t have to check your weight every day unless you’re on the HCG diet, but when you’re not dieting, checking your weight every week at minimum is a good idea. You’ll also need to be careful to not get too caught up about your weight because your body fat percentage also matters a lot. That means that you might be at what could be considered a relatively ‘normal’ weight in terms of BMI, but you might have a higher body fat than average because of a lack of exercise or a bad diet or other factors. In general you need to be careful about maintaining a healthy body fat percentage and not just weight, and there are various methods that you can use such as the caliper test others.

Don’t eat your kids’ food

It’s essential that you keep your own food separate from your kids’ food because their nutritional needs are different and they can get away with eating high calorie meals while you won’t be able to. Try to eat at least smaller portions if you are going to eat the same thing as them, or if they have junk food you should definitely be careful to keep it separate. If you have kids you are likely to have snacks around your kitchen and home that are tempting so you’ll need to exercise self restraint and also try to make healthier choices with your grocery shopping.

Try group fitness

Group fitness classes can be a great way to add regular exercise into your schedule that is time efficient and occurs on a regular basis. It’s great for adults because it can help to keep you motivated as you take care of your other obligations and helps to keep you from falling off your exercise routine. There are a wide range of group fitness options that may work for you, but don’t try any ‘bootcamp’ style fitness classes unless you are approved for it by your medical doctor.

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