Tuesday, June 30, 2009

~ Myths about Dieting and Food ~

Myth: Nuts are fattening and you should not eat them if you want to lose weight.

Fact: In small amounts, nuts can be part of a healthy weight-loss program. Nuts are high in calories and fat. However, most nuts contain healthy fats that do not clog arteries. Nuts are also good sources of protein, dietary fiber, and minerals including magnesium and copper.

Tip: Enjoy small portions of nuts. One-half ounce of mixed nuts has about 84 calories.

Monday, June 29, 2009

~ Myths about Dieting and Food ~

Myth: Lifting weights is not good to do if you want to lose weight, because it will make you “bulk up.”

Fact: Lifting weights or doing strengthening activities like push-ups and crunches on a regular basis can actually help you maintain or lose weight. These activities can help you build muscle, and muscle burns more calories than body fat. So if you have more muscle, you burn more calories—even sitting still. Doing strengthening activities 2 or 3 days a week will not “bulk you up.” Only intense strength training, combined with a certain genetic background, can build very large muscles.

Tip: In addition to doing moderate-intensity physical activity (like walking 2 miles in 30 minutes) on most days of the week, try to do strengthening activities 2 to 3 days a week. You can lift weights, use large rubber bands (resistance bands), do push-ups or sit-ups, or do household or garden tasks that make you lift or dig. Strength training helps keep your bones strong while building muscle, which can help burn calories.

For more information about the benefits of physical activity and suggestions on how to be more active, read the 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, available online at http://www.health.gov/PAguidelines.

Friday, June 26, 2009

~ Myths about Dieting and Food ~

Myth : Eating after 8 p.m. causes weight gain.

Fact: It does not matter what time of day you eat. It is what and how much you eat and how much physical activity you do during the whole day that determines whether you gain, lose, or maintain your weight. No matter when you eat, your body will store extra calories as fat.

Tip: If you want to have a snack before bedtime, think first about how many calories you have eaten that day. And try to avoid snacking in front of the TV at night—it may be easier to overeat when you are distracted by the television.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

~ Myths about Dieting and Food ~

Myth: Skipping meals is a good way to lose weight.

Fact: Studies show that people who skip breakfast and eat fewer times during the day tend to be heavier than people who eat a healthy breakfast and eat four or five times a day. This may be because people who skip meals tend to feel hungrier later on, and eat more than they normally would. It may also be that eating many small meals throughout the day helps people control their appetites.

Tip: Eat small meals throughout the day that include a variety of healthy, low-fat, low-calorie foods.

For more information about healthy eating, read the Weight-control Information Network brochure Healthy Eating and Physical Activity Across Your Lifespan: Tips for Adults.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

~ Myths about Dieting and Food ~

Myth: Fast foods are always an unhealthy choice and you should not eat them when dieting.

Fact: Fast foods can be part of a healthy weight-loss program with a little bit of know-how.

Tip: Avoid supersized combo meals, or split one with a friend. Sip on water or fat-free milk instead of soda. Choose salads and grilled foods, like a grilled chicken breast sandwich or small hamburger. Try a “fresco” taco (with salsa instead of cheese or sauce) at taco stands. Fried foods, like french fries and fried chicken, are high in fat and calories, so order them only once in a while, order a small portion, or split an order with a friend. Also, use only small amounts of high-fat, high-calorie toppings, like regular mayonnaise, salad dressings, bacon, and cheese.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

~ Myths about Dieting and Food ~

Myth: “I can lose weight while eating whatever I want.”

Fact: To lose weight, you need to use more calories than you eat. It is possible to eat any kind of food you want and lose weight. You need to limit the number of calories you eat every day and/or increase your daily physical activity. Portion control is the key. Try eating smaller amounts of food and choosing foods that are low in calories.

Tip: When trying to lose weight, you can still eat your favorite foods—as long as you pay attention to the total number of calories that you eat.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Problems Sleeping? This may be of help

Coupon for free trial of Sleep medicine. Click here to get yours now.

~ Myths about Dieting and Food ~

Myth: Low-fat or fat-free means no calories.

Fact: A low-fat or fat-free food is often lower in calories than the same size portion of the full-fat product. But many processed low-fat or fat-free foods have just as many calories as the full-fat versions of the same foods—or even more calories. They may contain added sugar, flour, or starch thickeners to improve flavor and texture after fat is removed. These ingredients add calories.

Tip: Read the Nutrition Facts on a food package to find out how many calories are in a serving. Check the serving size too—it may be less than you are used to eating.

For more information about reading food labels, visit the U.S. Food and Drug Administration online at www.cfsan.fda.gov/~dms/foodlab.html.

Friday, June 19, 2009

~ Myths on Dieting and Food ~

Myth: Natural or herbal weight-loss products are safe and effective.

Fact: A weight-loss product that claims to be “natural” or “herbal” is not necessarily safe. These products are not usually scientifically tested to prove that they are safe or that they work. For example, herbal products containing ephedra (now banned by the U.S. Government) have caused serious health problems and even death. Newer products that claim to be ephedra-free are not necessarily danger-free, because they may contain ingredients similar to ephedra.

Tip: Talk with your health care provider before using any weight-loss product. Some natural or herbal weight-loss products can be harmful.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

~ Myths about Dieting and Food ~

Myth: High-protein/low-carbohydrate diets are a healthy way to lose weight.

Fact: The long-term health effects of a high-protein/low-carbohydrate diet are unknown. But getting most of your daily calories from high-protein foods like meat, eggs, and cheese is not a balanced eating plan. You may be eating too much fat and cholesterol, which may raise heart disease risk. You may be eating too few fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, which may lead to constipation due to lack of dietary fiber. Following a high-protein/low-carbohydrate diet may also make you feel nauseous, tired, and weak.

Eating fewer than 130 grams of carbohydrate a day can lead to the buildup of ketones in your blood. Ketones are partially broken-down fats. A buildup of these in your blood (called ketosis) can cause your body to produce high levels of uric acid, which is a risk factor for gout (a painful swelling of the joints) and kidney stones. Ketosis may be especially risky for pregnant women and people with diabetes or kidney disease. Be sure to discuss any changes in your diet with a health care professional, especially if you have health conditions such as cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, or type 2 diabetes.

Tip: High-protein/low-carbohydrate diets are often low in calories because food choices are strictly limited, so they may cause short-term weight loss. But a reduced-calorie eating plan that includes recommended amounts of carbohydrate, protein, and fat will also allow you to lose weight. By following a balanced eating plan, you will not have to stop eating whole classes of foods, such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables—and miss the key nutrients they contain. You may also find it easier to stick with a diet or eating plan that includes a greater variety of foods.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

~ Myths about Dieting and Food ~

Let's look at some Exercise, diet, fad diet, eating, and other food-related myths and the reality behind them.

Thanks to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the National Institutes of Health and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases for the following information.

Myth : Fad diets work for permanent weight loss.
Fact: Fad diets are not the best way to lose weight and keep it off. Fad diets often promise quick weight loss or tell you to cut certain foods out of your diet. You may lose weight at first on one of these diets. But diets that strictly limit calories or food choices are hard to follow. Most people quickly get tired of them and regain any lost weight.
Fad diets may be unhealthy because they may not provide all of the nutrients your body needs. Also, losing weight at a very rapid rate (more than 3 pounds a week after the first couple of weeks) may increase your risk for developing gallstones (clusters of solid material in the gallbladder that can be painful). Diets that provide less than 800 calories per day also could result in heart rhythm abnormalities, which can be fatal.

Tip: Research suggests that losing 1/2 to 2 pounds a week by making healthy food choices, eating moderate portions, and building physical activity into your daily life is the best way to lose weight and keep it off. By adopting healthy eating and physical activity habits, you may also lower your risk for developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure.

“Lose 30 pounds in 30 days!”
“Eat as much as you want and still lose weight!”
“Try the thigh buster and lose inches fast!”
And so on, and so on. With so many products and weight-loss theories out there, it is easy to get confused. This information may help clear up confusion about weight loss, nutrition, and physical activity. It may also help you make healthy changes in your eating and physical activity habits. If you have questions not answered here, or if you want to lose weight, talk to your health care provider. A registered dietitian or other qualified health professional can give you advice on how to follow a healthy eating plan, lose weight safely, and keep the weight off.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Even MORE Great Resources!


General Info on Cholesterol

Checklists for Lowering Your Cholesterol

Cholesterol: The best foods to lower your cholesterol and protect your heart

Lowering Your Cholesterol With TLC

How You Can Lower Your Cholesterol Levels

Free Diet and Weight Loss Journal


Calculating BMI (Body Mass Index)


Emotional Eating

Overeaters Anonymous

“Get a Handle on Emotional Eating” article

Binge Eating Disorder information

Good article on binge eating disorder and emotional eating

Fitness Center Locator


General information (articles, self-evaluation tools)


Fun sites


Freebies 4 U 2


Friday, June 12, 2009

Some Resources You Might Like

Activity Trackers
My Physical Activity Tracker

Food and Activity Tracker

Calorie Range For Weight Loss
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/weight-loss/NU00595 calorie range required for wt loss
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/exercise/SM00109 exercise required for wt loss

Diabetic Resources (Type II)

Reading Food Labels: People with Diabetes

Create your Healthy Eating Plan: Diabetes

New guidelines for healthy diabetic Diet

Diabetes: Exercise and Weight Loss

Tips on healthy eating, weight control, recipes and special diets.

Recipe and Meal Planner Guide

What I need to know about Eating and Diabetes

Your Guide To Eating Out with Diabetes

Diabetic Recipes

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Great Article on Motivation to Exercise!

How much exercise do I need?
Recent studies indicate that low-level exercise done most days of the week is enough to help keep us healthy. Strive for three types of exercise into your daily routine: aerobic, to get your heart rate up (20 minutes a day); strength-building, to build muscles (15 to 25 minutes twice a week); and stretching, to lengthen and loosen muscles and joints (5 to 10 minutes a day). Just a total of 30 minutes of exercise most days is enough to help you stay healthy! Always check with your physician before starting any exercise routine.

How do I get motivated?

Below are some strategies to get you moving.

Pick activities that are fun and appeal to you. There are plenty of activities out there — try swing dancing, bowling, yoga, ice skating or hiking. Combine exercise with other activities you enjoy. For instance, if you like the beach, what better way to enjoy its sights and sounds than to take a long walk?
Having a partner can help motivate you to exercise. Develop a buddy system either face-to-face or by phone or e-mail contact.
Keep an activity journal where you write down your fitness goals for the week. Then at the end of the week, see how close you came to meeting your goals. If you faltered at any time, figure out why you did. If, for instance, you said you were going to walk when you got home from work, maybe you found that preparing dinner or your daily commute got in the way. Once you know what prevented you from exercising, you can refine your goals to better suit your lifestyle. In addition to recording what you did, chart how your body felt after you exercised, what thoughts helped spur you, when you wanted to cut your session short, how it felt to accomplish your goals, etc. Your journal can be a powerful tool in helping you to get and stay motivated. Use it!
Make a no-excuses pact with yourself. Each one of us could probably come up with a whole list of excuses as to why we can't exercise. Try to nip this excuse reflex in the bud by confronting it in the beginning. Have a firm conversation with that little voice inside you that has prevented you from keeping promises to yourself in the past. Tell the voice that you're going to exercise for your health and because you enjoy it. When it tries to speak up, sing a song, change your thoughts or, better yet, start exercising to shut it up. The most common reasons given for not continuing an exercise program are lack of time and boredom. Think of ways to try to combat these excuses before you begin your program. For instance, to fit in exercise, try scheduling exercise in a daily appointment book. Seeing your exercise plan in black and white may help you to stay motivated.
Get into a positive mindset or as Nike says, "just do it!" Think good thoughts about the prospect of exercise, such as how refreshing it will feel to move about freely. Once you start exercising, focus on increased feelings of self-esteem, a sense of accomplishment and the increased energy levels that exercise brings. If you slack off for a few days or several weeks, wipe the slate clean and start again. Don't use messing up as an excuse for giving up.
Set realistic goals. Trying to exercise at an overly vigorous pace can set the stage for dropping out. If you haven't exercised in a while, keep your initial goals modest. For instance:* I will walk three times a week for 20 minutes. * I will stretch for five minutes three times a week. * I will exercise with 2 ½ pound-weights for 15 minutes twice a week. In a few weeks, after you achieve these goals, you can set new goals. For example, you can increase the length of time you spend exercising. Eventually, you should exercise at least 30 minutes most days of the week.

How hard should my heart work?
In order to reap health benefits you should exercise at your target heart rate for at least 20 minutes three times a week. Your target heart rate is the rate at which your heart is working at 65-70% of its maximum capacity. To find out if you're working hard enough, stop exercising about halfway through your exercise routine and find a pulse point. (Your wrist or carotid artery in your neck work best.) Count the beats in a 30-second period and multiply by 2. This is your heart rate. Now, see how it fits into the calculator below.

Why is walking the perfect exercise?
It's safe, effective and almost anyone can do it. Besides warding off many diseases that result from inactivity, such as heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis and certain forms of cancer, walking can also help relieve pain from headaches, fibromyalgia, lower back, joints, pulled muscles and other conditions. Why? Because walking (and other exercise) stimulates the release of mood-elevating endorphins, chemicals in the brain that minimize pain.

Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your walking program:

  • If you're not used to exercise, start off slowly. For the first week or two, set modest goals such as walking for 10 minutes or around the block.
  • Gradually work up to a more vigorous program. Eventually, you should walk (or do another form of exercise) nearly every day for at least 30 minutes.
  • When walking, always strive for a brisk pace. You should push yourself a bit, but there is no need to become breathless. A good test is to try walking and talking at the same time. If you can't, slow your pace a bit. If it seems too easy, pick it up. Music with a good beat played on a headset can help you keep a strong pace.
  • Find a walking buddy. Walking with a partner can take your mind off the distance traveled and, if you are walking early in the morning or after dark, it's much safer.
  • Try to stay in good walking form at all times: Hold your head high, tuck your pelvis under your torso, tighten your abdomen slightly and swing your arms at a 90-degree angle.

Why do I need to stretch?

Proper stretching can loosen muscles and joints, prevent muscle pulls and tears, increase mobility and improve circulation.

Here are some stretching guidelines:

  • Breathe normally when performing stretches.
  • Stretch for a few minutes after you wake up in the morning, after sitting for long periods of time and whenever you feel tense.
  • Stretches should be done slowly. Don't bounce.
  • Don't push the stretch too far. Stretching should not be painful.
  • In the beginning, hold each stretch for at least 10 seconds. Work up to 30 to 60 seconds for each exercise.
  • If you plan to stretch before a work-out, first do a 5 or 10 minute warm-up (such as jogging in place, walking on a treadmill or riding a stationary bicycle.) Stretching muscles that aren't warmed up can result in tears and pulls.

This article is from vHealthHighway, Virtua's monthly e-mail newsletter on health and wellness issues. To subscribe click here.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Irrational Beliefs and Challenges #13 of 13

Irrational Belief #13: Because I’ve fallen back from my food plan many times, it’s hopeless, and I’ll never be able to keep eating properly.

  • Because I’ve fallen back from my food plan many times, I find it difficult to keep eating properly. But that doesn’t mean it’s hopeless or impossible.
  • It is quite common that people fail many times at a goal before they find their way to succeed.
  • I am as human as the next person.
  • I’ll keep trying!

Behavior: Keep a log of incidents of falling back from your food plan, then note how you challenged your irrational belief, and how you successfully managed your food plan following the incident. Identify other situations where you failed multiple times but then eventually succeeded.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Irrational Beliefs and Challenges #12 of 13

Irrational Belief #12: Eating poorly and stupidly makes me a rotten, stupid person.

  • Eating poorly and stupidly makes me a person who is now behaving poorly around eating and who can change and eat better in the future.
  • My value as a human being is not dependent on my eating behavior.
  • My intelligence has nothing to do with my eating.
  • People at every IQ level can behave badly around food AND people at every level can behave appropriately around food....regardless of my IQ, I have a choice how I behave.
Behavior: Keep a log of incidents of eating poorly and stupidly, then note how you challenged your irrational belief and how you successfully managed your food plan following the incident.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Irrational Beliefs and Challenges #11 of 13

Irrational Belief #11: People make me angry and drive me to overeating.

  • People sometimes act poorly but I can choose to tell myself that I cannot control how they act, but can only control how I react.
  • I can choose not to make myself angry at them and overeat.
  • My anger and my overeating are unrelated. I can control my anger and control my eating.
  • I can find other healthy things to do with my anger than eat.
  • I can take care of myself and my healthy by remaining calm.

Behavior: Keep a log of incidents of anger caused by others, then note how you challenged your irrational belief and how you successfully managed your food plan following the incident.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Irrational Beliefs and Challenges #10 of 13

Irrational Belief #10: I am poor at managing my food.

  • At times I eat well and can manage food better now and in the future.
  • I lacked skills in managing, but I am able to learn and do better each day.
  • Because I was poor at managing in the past does not mean I cannot be good at it with time, effort, and patience with myself.
Behavior: Develop written guidelines for each meal to follow your food plan. Avoid impulse shopping. Prepare shopping lists and shop when not hungry.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Irrational Beliefs and Challenges #9 of 13

Irrational Belief #9: I’m hungry and if I don’t eat right now, it will never end and I won’t be able to stand it.


  • If I don’t eat right now, I will continue to lose.
  • This one extra food will not really make me feel any better, but it will directly delay my goal.
  • The hunger I am feeling is a type of pain. It will fade if I can just wait a half hour. I’ll be able to make it.
  • The grumbling in my stomach, the empty feelings and the cravings for food mean I am losing weight.
  • This feeling is temporary, and if I can hold out just an hour or so it will be a major accomplishment!
  • This is the most difficult effort I will ever have to make, and it’s worth the doing!
  • What will it really do for me if I eat now? I will still want food but will have to work even harder to lose weight.
  • How will I feel if I give in to the pain? (Think back to the previous times when you have given in, during other weight-loss attempts).
  • Will my peers, friends and loved ones respect me if I give in to their sabotage or discouragement?
  • How will I feel if I hold out a bit longer?
  • If I’ve done it for a few days why can’t I do it for as long as it takes; how is now different?
  • When I feel like this I will delay eating for 15 minutes and see if I still feel the same way after that time.

Behaviors: Practice these challenges when you feel this way and identify which ones work best for you.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Irrational Beliefs and Challenges #8 of 13

Irrational Belief #8: The situation/people/food made me eat.

  • In some situations I feel tempted or weak, but I am the only one that can control my actions.
  • If I act contrary to my own goals, I will try better to understand my own actions and thinking, rather than blame others.
  • I will take responsibilty for my thoughts and actions.

Behavior: Take action to remove or reduce unnecessary temptation within your control as appropriate; i.e. do not keep unhealthy food in the house, choose restaurants that are more consistent with your food plan.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Irrational Beliefs and Challenges #7 of 13

Irrational Belief #7: If I eat even one thing that’s not on my food plan, my whole day is blown and I might as well eat everything I want.


  • Every action I take is independent. Therefore, I can recover from any slip.
  • I will work continuously at succeeding without ever putting myself down when I goof.

Behavior: Identify and log the triggers that led to the slip. Log behaviors following a slip that promote continuation of the food plan. Identify other situations where you failed multiple times but then eventually succeeded.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Irrational Beliefs and Challenges #6 of 13

Irrational Belief #6: I shouldn’t have to do this.

  • I am heavy because of my biology and my actions, and I can choose to stay this way or change it. If I decide to change it, I will because I want to, not because I have to; therefore I should manage my food if I want to change.
  • Life is not fair, and there are no rules that anyone should or should not do anything.
  • I use words like “should” to excuse me from engaging in behaviors that I find difficult.
Behavior: Keep log about how frequently you think about “shoulds.” Dispute the “shoulds” on every occasion.
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