Muscle vs. Fat and Your Energy Level

Right now, the greatest results in raising our metabolism come from exercise and building our muscle mass, while reducing our body fat. Adding more muscle to the body, in turn causes us to burn more calories, and this helps to elevate our metabolic rate.

What determines our metabolic rate, as far as our genetics? Generally, we tend to inherit the same tendencies for metabolic rates, body frames, and other related body functions from our parents.
All of this metabolic process is related to our calorie intake, our vitamin and nutrition needs, our thyroid and endocrine production, and how well all of these processes come together.

muscle

The body’s metabolism is a unique process for each individual person. No two people metabolize food at the same rate therefore no two people have the metabolism. We all use our calories at different rates, with different results. Our metabolism, like our fingerprints is unique to each of us. But the need to understand and accommodate this metabolism is an issue that we all face. I said all of that, to say this, our metabolism affects our energy levels, and our muscle mass and body fat also affect our energy levels. When you bring the two together, you have the opportunity to create lots of energy, raise a person’s self-esteem, and give them a new lease on life. But all of this isn’t easy to attain.

Some people have really high rates of metabolism. In other words, when they consume food, their bodies burn it up almost as fast as then consume it. Then there are those of use who use our food intake so slowly, as to not even notice that we’re burning calories. These people who burn quickly are often slim and trim, the people who burn more slowly are the people with a tendency toward obesity. The people with really high metabolic rates are generally the people who feel better and have the most energy. Their body is using the food intake to its maximum, and the body feels alive and full of vitality. The sluggish metabolism on the other hand, can have almost the opposite situation; low energy levels, with very little motivation to make lifestyle changes.

The only recourse we have in trying to control our body weight, metabolic burn and health is through our thorough understanding of the role food plays in our calorie consumption versus our calorie need, and control how much of the calories we take in.

Our metabolism functions also depend on how well we have taken care of our nutritional needs. The process of burning calories and creating energy is a delicate one, and one which must be carefully tended, or it can become imbalanced. It is often through these natural imbalances that we tend to “inherit’ our metabolic rate, our body weight, and the lower energy levels.

I believe through careful analysis, and attention to each person’s unique needs, we could bring about a more natural balance of the metabolic burn vs. the calorie intake. To a level where optimal health and weight control are in equilibrium.

muscle
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How Much Food is Enough?

As you study the food pyramid published by the USDA, we can examine some of the better foods, and try to decide what particular formulas make us the healthiest on average. The average person needs an hour of physical exercise, six to eleven servings of grains, two to four servings of fruit, three to five servings of vegetables, two to three servings of meat, two to three servings of milk, and enough water to make it all work.

The foods of the food pyramid are necessary for our optimal health. But in what quantities and which ones are the best? These are questions that must be tailored to our individual needs. And the answers will benefit our unique needs. Healthy for me, is not the same as healthy for you. Everyone’s nutritional needs are different, and everyone’s level of calorie consumption is different.

The guidelines found on the general chart of the pyramid are as listed above, and this could be the formula for an eighty year old man, or a fifteen year old girl. The recommended daily calorie intake is just as vague and generalized as the daily food intake pyramid. Can you see how this might not work for either one? When a guideline published is this general, it is up to the individual to determine what food regimen will keep them at their healthiest, provide the caloric intake necessary, but not excessive.

According to the guides published by the USDA, calorie needs vary from one age group to another, one gender to another. So how do you determine what your individual needs are? You can setup a journal for recording your daily caloric intake for about a month. Make a note of your weight each day. If you don’t gain any weight during the course of that month, you’re eating your recommended calorie level in order to maintain your weight. Now, take that calorie information, use the food pyramid and comprise a combination of foods that will help you achieve this recommended daily intake, and still be enough to be filling and please the palette. You now have an individualized healthy eating plan.

Once the importance of a particular food plan is understood by us, it is a simple as learning our multiplication tables. We simply memorize the food requirements, and incorporate it into our daily intake as needed. As you take the time to incorporate a healthy food plan, don’t’ forget the necessity of exercise in our daily lives. In order to keep our bodies healthy and functioning as expected, we need to keep it fit. This comes through proper amounts of exercise

It is at this point in the process that we seem to lack the direction to finish what the government started. Maybe we need to incorporate these techniques into a class taught at school. Maybe this would give our young people the direction and tools they need in order to begin such a process, make it a lifetime habit, and pass it along to their children. Whatever the formula, your food intake and level of calorie content, will affect your general overall health everyday. Overeating can bring on obesity, under eating can bring about anemia; you need to find that one right guide for you, and plan, plan, plan.

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How Does Our Food Intake Affect Our Health?

We can examine some of the better foods, and offer advice as to what particular formulas make us the healthiest on average. On average, you need an hour of exercise and enough servings from all the food groups to completely cover the food pyramid.

This could be the formula for an eighty year old man, or a fifteen year old girl. The recommended daily calorie intake is just as vague and generalized as the daily food intake pyramid. Can you see how this might not work for either one? When a guideline published is this general, it is up to the individual to determine what food regimen will keep them at their healthiest, and then implement such a plan.

food

 

The foods of the food pyramid are necessary for our optimal health. But in what quantities and which ones are the best? These are questions that must be tailored to our individual needs. So must the answer to what foods make us healthy be a unique one.

Healthy for me, is not the same as healthy for you. Everyone’s nutritional needs are different, and everyone’s level of calorie consumption is different.

Once the importance of a particular food plan is understood by us, it is a simple as learning our multiplication tables. We simply memorize the benefit, and incorporate it into our daily intake as needed. As you take the time to incorporate a healthy food plan, don’t’ forget the necessity of exercise in our daily lives. In order to keep our bodies healthy and functioning off of healthy food, we need to keep it fit. This comes through proper amounts of exercise.

According to the guides published by the USDA, your calorie needs are as individual as you. So how do you determine what your individual needs are? There’s one simple way to determine your calorie needs, simply keep a journal of your daily food intake. Now, take that calorie information, check with a nutritionist about the recommended daily allowances of vitamins and minerals that you need. Take both pieces of information, calorie intake and nutritional requirements, use the food pyramid and comprise a combination of foods that will help you achieve these recommended daily intakes, and still be enjoyable food. You now have an individualized healthy eating plan.

What those foods might be, are entirely dependent upon the unique guideline you have just established. This guide will not work for Cousin Bob, or Aunt Tilley, but it is the unique blueprint for you. It is at this point in the process that we seem to lack the direction or the discipline to finish what the government started. Maybe we need to incorporate these techniques into a class taught at school. Maybe this would give our young people the direction and tools they need in order to begin such a process, make it a lifetime habit, and pass it along to their children. Whatever the formula, your food intake, types and level of calorie content, will affect your general overall health everyday. Overeating can bring on obesity, under eating can bring about anemia; you need to find that one right guide for you, and plan, plan, plan.

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More Fat, Less Carbs

Over the last thirty years, food nutritionists and the food industry as a whole have embraced the idea of lowering our fat intake. This was a direct result of the information published by the government that encouraged less egg consumption because of the cholesterol found in eggs. After that particular piece of information, doctors began to discover that when we consume fat, we have higher incidences of cholesterol problems. The logical conclusion: fat must be bad for you. And so, an entire generation as grown up with fat-free foods. A whole generation grew up believing that fat was what made us fat, clogged our arteries, and generally caused ill-health.

So what did we do? We turned to carbs to make up for the loss in taste of food that had the fat removed; for you see, fat is what gives many of our foods their delicious taste. When you remove the fat, the taste must be artificially injected into the food. The end result is a food that is higher in carbohydrate content, but lower in fat. Hence, all the wonderful labels displaying the claim of “fat free” but neglect to mention the higher level of carbohydrates. Lowered fat should have created a population of slim, trim, healthy people. Right?

fat

We could not have been further from the truth. As it turns out, fat is a necessary part of our metabolic processes. We need the fat in order to properly utilize many of the vitamins and nutrients we consume. When did we make this discovery? Probably some thirty years too late for some people.

Now, more in-depth research has revealed that maybe it wasn’t the fat that created the cholesterol levels that were out of control. Maybe it was a combination of lifestyle and food habits that created dangerous levels of cholesterol. The startling discovery that there are two kinds of cholesterol: HDL and LDL. There are certain kinds of fat that contribute to the overall health of our arteries, not to their detriment. How could we have been so wrong? Because, just as many times before, the doctors performing these tests, found what they wanted to fine, not necessarily the truth. Further testing could have produced the same results in the beginning that they produced in the end.

Now, we have whole food industry formed around low or no-fat food alternatives. These companies have large amounts of money invested in the production of these foods, and is not going to be able or willing to turn around on a dime. It’s because of corporate investment that current knowledge about the “good” fat has been suppressed as long as it has. It is a very expensive piece of knowledge that is being passed on to the public today. So expensive, that some companies would be out of business were they to try and reverse their food processing.

Some of the fat that our bodies produce protects us from sickness and disease, and some forms of fat that we produce are necessary for our organs to function correctly. Many of the carbohydrates that we artificially inject into food become stored fat that creates obesity. It would seem to me, that we have traded the normal, necessary good, for the artificial bad.

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What is Metabolism?

The dictionary defines  as the sum of all biochemical processes involved in life, or the sustaining of life. In application concerning our health, metabolism is related to the intake and use of food. In reference to the case in point it is our ability to utilize our food to the fullest extent.

The body’s metabolism is a unique process for each individual person. No two people metabolize food at the same rate therefore no two people have the metabolism. We all use our calories at different rates, with different results. Our metabolism, like our fingerprints is unique to each of us. But the need to understand and accommodate this metabolism is an issue that we all face.

metabolism

Some people have really high rates of metabolism. In other words, when they consume food, their bodies burn it up almost as fast as then consume it. Then there are those of use who use our food intake so slowly, as to not even notice that we’re burning calories. These people who burn quickly are often slim and trim, the people who burn more slowly are the people with a tendency toward obesity.

All of this metabolic process is related to our calorie intake, our vitamin and nutrition needs, our thyroid and endocrine production, and how well all of these processes come together. For years, people have sought ways to raise the metabolic rate. If you can raise someone’s metabolic rate, you are then better able to control the burn of calories, especially for overweight or obese people. This would make the goal of better or improved health a much easier reality for those people. Efforts to date have produced very little results. There are foods that we can consume that naturally raise our metabolic rate, but not to a great extent. What we need is a way to directly alter the rate. We need to be able to raise our metabolism to a point where we can actually see a benefit.

Right now, the greatest results in raising our metabolism come from exercise and building our muscle mass, while reducing our body fat. Adding more muscle to the body, in turn causes us to burn more calories, and this helps to elevate our metabolic rate.

What determines our metabolic rate, as far as our genetics? Generally, we tend to inherit the same tendencies for metabolic rates, body frames, and other related body functions from our parents. Thus, the origin of “well, she comes from big people; naturally she’s going to be big”.

Our metabolism functions also depend on how well we have taken care of our nutritional needs. The process of burning calories and creating energy is a delicate one, and one which must be carefully tended, or it can become imbalanced. It is often through these natural imbalances that we tend to “inherit’ our metabolic rate.

I believe through careful analysis, and attention to each person’s unique needs, we could bring about a more natural balance of the metabolic burn vs. the calorie intake. To a level where optimal health and weight control are in equilibrium.

 

metabolism
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Metabolism and Eating Habits

The body’s metabolism is a unique process for each individual person. No two people metabolize food at the same rate therefore no two people have the metabolism. We all use our calories at different rates, with different results. Our metabolism, like our fingerprints is unique to each of us. But the need to understand and accommodate this metabolism is an issue that we all face.

The dictionary defines metabolism as the sum of all biochemical processes involved in life, or the sustaining of life. In application concerning our health, metabolism is related to the intake and use of food. In reference to the case in point it is our ability to utilize our food to the fullest extent.

metabolism

Some people have really high rates of metabolism. In other words, when they consume food, their bodies burn it up almost as fast as then consume it. Then there are those of use who use our food intake so slowly, as to not even notice that we’re burning calories. These people who burn quickly are often slim and trim, the people who burn more slowly are the people with a tendency toward obesity.

Right now, the greatest results in raising our metabolism come from exercise and building our muscle mass, while reducing our body fat. Adding more muscle to the body, in turn causes us to burn more calories, and this helps to elevate our metabolic rate.

What determines our metabolic rate, as far as our genetics? Generally, we tend to inherit the same tendencies for metabolic rates, body frames, and other related body functions from our parents.
All of this metabolic process is related to our calorie intake, our vitamin and nutrition needs, our thyroid and endocrine production, and how well all of these processes come together. For years, people have sought ways to raise the metabolic rate. If you can raise someone’s metabolic rate, you are then better able to control the burn of calories, especially for overweight or obese people. This would make the goal of better or improved health a much easier reality for those people. Efforts to date have produced very little results. There are foods that we can consume that naturally raise our metabolic rate, but not to a great extent. What we need is a way to directly alter the rate. We need to be able to raise our metabolism to a point where we can actually see a benefit.

The only recourse we have in trying to control our body weight, metabolic burn and health is through our thorough understanding of the role food plays in our calorie consumption versus our calorie need, and control how much of the calories we take in.

Our metabolism functions also depend on how well we have taken care of our nutritional needs. The process of burning calories and creating energy is a delicate one, and one which must be carefully tended, or it can become imbalanced. It is often through these natural imbalances that we tend to “inherit’ our metabolic rate.

I believe through careful analysis, and attention to each person’s unique needs, we could bring about a more natural balance of the metabolic burn vs. the calorie intake. To a level where optimal health and weight control are in equilibrium.

metabolism
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Fruit, Vegetables and Health

As a teen, most of us don’t even care if we’re eating right, or begin to understand the implications of poor eating habits. As we age, however, we do begin to notice the effects of improper exercise, poor eating habits, and how they affect our health. Today, as the baby boomers begin their retirement years, health concerns and questions are on the rise. These aging boomers are more concerned than any previous generations about their good health, their ability to keep their good health, and how their diet affects their health.

The easiest place to affect our health is through our eating habits; in fact it’s the most effective solution to better health, sharing the spotlight with exercise. What about our food intake? What choices do we have to make eating a healthier occurrence?

health

Fruits and vegetables are a great place to start. There are so many choices in the filed of fruits and vegetables, that being picky isn’t even a consideration here. It does not matter where your location, the time of the year, or the method of preparation, there are fruits and vegetables to suit the most discriminating taste.

The choices in fruits and vegetables run the gamut in color preference, leafy versus compact, fresh and raw, or freshly picked and cooked. There are fruits and vegetables high in flavor-noids, anti-oxidants, or just plain high in flavor.

What about as a snack? Do fruits and vegetables meet the snack requirement for taste? We already know that they’re good for us, but if we’re going to snack, we want something that tastes really good.

There are fruits and vegetables that fill that bill, quite successfully. What about celery? Celery with pimento or peanut butter is quite delicious. Or, you have the broccoli and cauliflower combination with ranch dip. That’s a snack that any other snack would be hard pressed to surpass. In the fruit section, you have so many snack choices it would require you to spend hours debating which one is best. Apples, oranges, mangoes, bananas, peaches and pears, and this just begins the list.

One of a southerner’s favorite snacks would be baked sweet potato. Now, this is normally consumed with large amounts of butter, but doesn’t have to be, in order to be good. The baked sweet potato can simply be peeled and eaten straight from the oven and it’s still delicious. Back in the fruit section, you still haven’t covered plums, grapes, raisins, watermelons, cantaloupes, or honey dew. My, my, I didn’t realize there were so many.

We haven’t even discussed fruit options that would require us to cook. These are just the fresh and raw options available, most year round. By the time you run the gamut with these ideas, you should be ready to start all over at the beginning.

You should have enough options now for snacking, that healthful snacking can become a standard, not an exception for you. These ideas do not by any means encompass all options; these are just simply the most popular local favorites if you live in the South and in Alabama.

 

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Calcium and Eating Healthy

Did you understand the importance of calcium in your diet before the widespread news of the effects of too little calcium was published? Probably not. Chances are you still don’t fully understand the effect of calcium on your digestive processes and the functioning of your heart.

Calcium is one of the essential elements that must be present during the metabolism of our food, and during the beating of your heart. Calcium deficiencies in these two areas are what helps lead to heart disease and osteoporosis. When you don’t take enough calcium in through your daily intake of food and vitamins, your body will draw on the calcium reserves in your bones in order to have enough to maintain body processes. This is why women, who are older, often develop osteoporosis, and don’t even begin to realize they are at risk. When the amount of calcium in your blood drops to a low level, the body will draw calcium out of the bones. This causes your bones to become more porous and brittle. This explains the rise in broken hips in older people, especially women.

calcium

In order to absorb calcium into our bones, we need the presence of estrogen and exercise. Both of these are in short supply during our later years, chiefly because your body doesn’t produce estrogen after menopause, and as we age, we lose the ability to exercise. Vitamin D is a backup to the estrogen and exercise problem, however, because Vitamin D does continue to help our body absorb Calcium. Hence, we have the addition of Calcium to milk, naturally high in Vitamin D.

If you have determined that you need supplemental Calcium, there are certain forms of calcium that are more easily digested. The best absorbed form of calcium comes in a pill in the form of calcium salt like carbonate or phosphate.

There is a further warning to some forms of calcium that are available on the market today Both the bone meal calcium and dolomite calcium have been found to contain toxic metals such as arsenic, mercury, lead, and cadmium. One additional piece of advice, if you’ve heard that antacids contain calcium that you can use as a supplement instead of vitamins, the information is correct. However, you’d have to take a handful of antacids and quite often they contain substances that disrupt the digestive process. The best advice to date is to purchase a good calcium carbonate or phosphate as a vitamin supplement and establish a regular habit of taking them first thing in the morning with breakfast.

If you have heart, kidney, liver disease, or high blood pressure, you should consult a physician before taking calcium supplements as the medicine you’re already taking may contain a built in supplement, or may cause a reaction when combined with calcium.

The recommended daily dosage for children is 800 milligrams of calcium each day. This level is fairly accurate for women until they reach the post-menopausal age and the level of estrogen production is reduced or eliminated. At that point, calcium intake should reach a level of 1500 milligrams per day; almost double that of pre-menopausal women.

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The ABC’s of Eating

The ABC’s of Eating would be a great title for an education course that addresses all of the food groups, the benefits and detriments of those groups and how to ascertain what our individual needs are from each category.

That doesn’t seem like such a difficult concept, but do you see any class being taught that addresses those issues? No, and more than likely you won’t. Because our society doesn’t feel like it is an issue that should be addressed by our education system.

eating

Let me put this proposition before you, however. Has there always been an evident need to learn to drive? No, driving wasn’t around until the turn of the 20th century. Driving is included in the education system, and taught as a matter of course each year. The need to be educated in the ability to drive is relatively new, and is not one of the “old world” school topics, but it’s included because a need developed.

Education about our eating is a need that has developed over the last 30 years, and has now reached epidemic portions. Advertisements about our eating choices are driven by the need to make a profit. The commercials our children are watching have nothing to do with their real nutritional needs, or the foods that actually are good for them to consume. Here is where the educational process should bridge the gap. Just as our education system teaches our children how to count, read, and write, they should teach them about their eating habits. We educate our children because knowledge is power. It provides them with the power they need to make good decisions, acquire jobs, create new products and processes, and to live out their lives as they see fit. Shouldn’t they also have a basic knowledge of how to utilize the food resources around them?

Teaching and educating about the basics of the food groups, how they work with your body, the metabolic process of digesting those foods, how the body uses and stores energy, and how to keep all those processes working at optimal levels is as important as understanding the algebraic theorems and how they apply to our ability to perform mathematically. Determining just where in the education realm that such a class would fit is another matter. Members of the educational system will probably tell you that it simply isn’t a matter of concern for the school system, that it is an issue best addressed at home. But how can it be addressed at home, if the person at home has no knowledge to impart? We don’t just acquire the knowledge needed for intelligent food consumption with the birth of our children.

The basic food groups and what foods fall into each category is a topic lightly addressed during the health classes taught at our middle schools. But what about the metabolic process of digesting those foods, the interaction of the food, the nutrients, and our energy needs? Knowing how to differentiate between what foods will provide both energy, nutrients, and good taste is a learned knowledge. Do you suppose children would continue to stuff something in their mouth if we addressed the consumption of Twinkies in the same way we do dirt?

 

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