3 Tips for Losing Weight Healthily

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Losing excess weight not only makes you look and feel good, but also significantly reduces your risk of getting diseases like obesity, diabetes, heart attack and high blood pressure. There are numerous crash diets and over the top workout programs sold online that promise to help you lose weight fast, but most of them don’t work in the long term.

If you’ve tried any of them and failed, don’t give up just yet. There are numerous steps you can take to develop a healthy relationship with food and attain lasting weight loss. Here are 3 tips for losing weight healthily:

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 Introduce Changes Gradually

Our bodies use the foods we eat for energy. When you eat more food than your body requires for daily activities, the excess energy is stored as fat. The more food you eat, the more fat your body stores and the more weight you’ll gain. To lose weight in a healthy way, it is very important that you gradually change your eating habits.
Making small changes here and there can make a big difference in the long run. So, if you are used to eating unhealthy foods, try cutting them out slowly and replacing them with healthier alternatives (vegetables, fruits, whole grains and lean meat). Swap snacks like biscuits, candy bars or potato chips for fruits such as an apple to ensure you remain fuller for longer.

Reduce Your Calorie Intake

Other than introducing healthier foods to your diet, you also need to limit the amount of food you eat to lose weight. A good starting point is cutting down on foods that have added sugar and refined carbohydrates like white bread, energy drinks and white rice among others. Aim to eat at least 300-500 calories less everyday, and you’ll be able to lose between 1-2 pounds per week. This may seem a bit slow, but it is more realistic and sustainable. Eat smaller portions of the foods you usually enjoy, and you’ll be able to lose weight for sure.

Increase Your Activity Level

Every time you exercise more than you usually do, but maintain your calorie intake, you’ll burn calories and fat. There are many physical activities you can do to increase your level of activity even if you don’t like going to the gym. This can be anything from using the stairs at work instead of the lift, watching your favorite TV programs while jogging on a tread mill or using a stationary bicycle, swimming, or taking longer walks than you usually do.

The key to long-term weight loss is to eat less calories than your body needs, do physical activities that you enjoy regularly and make lifestyle changes that contribute to your overall health. Always remember that every extra step you take in the right direction brings you closer to achieving your weight loss goal.

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Is Caffeine Okay During Pregnancy

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In 1980 the FDA released a publication that warned against a pregnant woman drinking caffeine beverages. It recommended that a woman restrict or better yet, eliminate all caffeine intake because it could be directly linked to the potential for certain birth defects. This recommendation stood strong even in 1994 when a review of more than 200 medical journals conducted by Dr. Astrid Nehlig was published in the Journal of Neurotoxicology and Teratology. But what’s the recommendation today?

Currently many doctors recommend that a pregnant woman takes in less than 300 mg of caffeine daily. This is because studies that are more recent have not shown a link between caffeine and harm to the baby with an intake that is less than 300 mg. These new scientific studies are causing doctors to have a look at the results and many are changing their recommendations although some still remain very conservative. This is best discussed openly with your doctor.

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What Caffeine Does

Caffeine is a stimulant that stimulates the central nervous system. It also reduces your iron absorption and it leaches calcium from the body. Caffeine has a diuretic effect and it has the ability to cross the placenta and make its way to your baby. Caffeine does the following once it is in your body:

  • Decreases the amount of calcium in your body
  • Dehydrates you
  • Increases your blood pressure
  • Raises your heart rate

The same thing that happens to you happens to your baby with the one exception and that is that baby will steal calcium that it needs from your bones if it can’t get it elsewhere. Caffeine has also been linked to interfering with normal fetal growth and as a result this leads to low birth weight and weakened adrenal glands that can affect the ability to cope with stress and to regulate blood sugar

It is a good idea to avoid caffeine or at least cut back your intake to 300 mg per day, and some experts say that number should be no more than 150 mg per day. You may have no problem handling caffeine but remember that the liver of your baby is immature and so it is not able to remove the caffeine. This means that caffeine stays with your baby for 40 to 130 hours.

Common sources of caffeine include:

  • Coffee – 100-200 mg per 8 ounce
  • Headache medicine – 65-130mg
  • Soda – 40-75mg per can
  • Tea – black 60mg, green 40mg
  • Dark Chocolate – 5-35mg per 1 ounce
  • Milk Chocolate – 1-15mg per 1 ounce

Talk to your doctor about caffeine intake and follow what his/her recommendations are.

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Fitness Trackers: How Effective Are They?

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Health and fitness trackers have become very popular as consumers concerned about health and fitness use them to monitor their work-outs and physical activity. They consider them as ideal tools for improving their lifestyles by staying fit and keeping healthy. There are different fitness trackers that vary on functionality and even brand. Seeing that these gadgets have become so common, the biggest question then is: how effective are they? Every consumer wants to get value for money and so they’ll be looking to purchase items that can fully serve them.

In looking at how effective fitness trackers really are, it is important to dwell on their functionality and then check whether they meet the buyers’ expectations.

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More data capturing

Most smartphone fitness apps do not capture as much data as a fitness tracker can. Some fitness trackers are designed to collect extra data such as the rate of your heartbeat during physical activities or the cadence of a runner and time of contact between foot and ground. The extra functionalities of fitness trackers make them worth the cost because consumers will get value for money. For example, some fitness trackers possess smartphone features like push notifications. These gadgets basically collect data, analyze them and present them in a way that users can make comparisons and evaluate progress. It is difficult to determine the effectiveness of your fitness program without a simple way to gather data.

Motivation

From a psychological point of view, simply wearing a fitness tracker can be a great source of motivation for individuals looking to stay healthy and keep fit. There are those who are very much motivated by data, a key feature of fitness tracking devices. Just by reading their physical activity figures, they can find sufficient drive to meet and exceed their fitness targets. People draw inspiration and find motivation from different quarters. Some people find exercising with friends ideal while others are driven by life goals like looking awesome at a wedding.

Healthcare transformation

This technology has greatly transformed healthcare by making it possible to monitor the progress of patients without necessarily hospitalizing them. Monitoring of important medical aspects of patients like body temperatures, rates of heartbeat, muscle motions as well as other critical data can be effectively done using these gadgets. In sports training, trackers are used to measure sweat rate which could only be done through lab-based systems some few years ago. It is common to see athletes wearing fitness trackers as they go about their daily training routines because of their effectiveness in monitoring physical activity.

These are all key reasons that indicate the effectiveness of fitness tracking devices. They have great functionalities which serve to meet the expectations of consumers, a major requirement for any product in the current business environment. When all is said and done, it still comes down to the ability of an individual to put the collected data into use. The results will not come until you put in some good work. The trackers are supposed to aid you in your work-outs, the real work is done by yourself.

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