Archive for March, 2010
I recently got an iPhone for my Birthday (Yes, I am spoiled), and I soon discovered it’s many wonderful iPhone applications that are helpful with Health and Weight loss.
The reasons why I love the “Lose it!” App for the iPhone
1) You can easily set up your weight loss goals. You enter in your current weight, your goal weight, and set up a time line on when you can realistically expect to achieve your goal weight. You can do this by setting up a realistic plan of losing anywhere from “maintain current weight” to “lose 2 lbs per week”. Once you decide on what you want to commit to, it will give you a date of when you will be at your goal weight. The more weight you lose each week, the sooner you will be at your goal weight (do not lose more than 2 pounds a week!). Now you have a date of when you will have reached your goal, and I feel it makes it even more exciting and real.
2) Easily tracks your exercise each day. It has a database of common exercises that people participate in, gives an estimated calorie burn for how long you were exercising, as well as for the intensity of the exercise. For example, the Elliptical machine at “Vigorous” for 30 minutes estimates that you have burned about 257 calories. I have tested this many times, and usually the estimates are quite accurate. Normally, I am within about 5 calories from what my machine at the gym said, versus what my “Lose it!” applicate says I burned. If the applicate seems to be way off on it’s calculation, change the intensity level until you have found the right level of what you have participated in.
3) Easily tracks Food you have consumed each day, and breaks it down in Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and Snacks. You can find common foods in a database, or you can add your own foods in, and it remembers it for later use.
4) When you add in your current weight, weight loss goal and timeline, and you add in your exercise and food…it let’s you know if you are on track or not on track for your goal weight by providing you a calorie budget. This is a nice high-tech food journal, with all the extra perks!
5) “Lose it!” is a FREE Application.
Remember when you are trying to lose weight, you should focus on your overall health! Yes, you are allowed so many calories a day, but be sure that you are feeding your body the nutrition it needs to function and live.
Butternut Squash as a Soup? You bet! I recommend this for those who want the health benefits of butternut squash without the texture of this squash. Actually, I recommend it to anyone whether you like this squash’s texture or not. Though, this soup is great to have year round, I would recommend this as a new holiday favorite. With its touch of cinnamon and nutmeg, it will fit right in.
Need something quick and healthy for you and the family? This is easy to prepare. Just open up the container, put it on the stove, and within just a couple of minutes on a mid-range heat, your soup is ready to serve. (Don’t recommend using the microwave)
This soup is low in calories (less than 100 per serving), low fat, low in sugar, and no cholesterol. This is a high fiber food, which is a good thing. One thing I am not too fond of, is that I feel like it is a little high in sodium (550mg, or 23% of daily value on a 2,000 calorie diet), but I still feel like it is much healthier for you than most other soups without sacrificing the taste.
If you want more information on the health benefits of squash, check out my post on it under the Nutrition category.
Serving: 1 cup
This is a question I am sure a bunch of sexy beach babes ask all the time, or at least should be asking themselves this question.
“Why do I need to use SPF?”
What does “SPF” Mean?
Let’s start at the beginning. SPF means Sun Protection Factor. The number you see with SPF (SPF 30 for example), represents the length of time you can stay out in the sun without burning, multiplied by that number. If you normally burn after 10 minutes, you should be able to stay out in the sun (theoretically) for 300 minutes if you have SPF 30. I would recommend having a high SPF, and putting SPF on as often as you can…let’s say every hour or every other hour, depending on whether you are swimming/sweating or not.
Is the Sun Good for you?
The Sun is good for you for the first couple of minutes of exposure (sunlight helps our body make Vitamin D, which helps with things like depression), but as the saying goes, too much of a good thing can be bad. In the case of the sun, it can be very bad.
What is a Tan or Sunburn, and what are the side effects?
So many people are focused on having the nice beach tan, but they ignore the realities of a tan. Tanned skin may lookgood to you, but it is actually a sign of sun damage to your skin.The body is trying to protect itself from the sun’s damaging rays.
Sun damage also causes pre-mature aging. I realize as I get older, I am going to get wrinkles. That’s life. Am I going to try to invite wrinkles earlier than they need to arrive on my face? I don’t think so.
Sun damage can also cause skin cancers, by having the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays hitting your skin. The sad thing about skin cancer, is that it is one of the most common cancers, as well as probably one of the most preventable. Skin cancer not only doesn’t look or feel good, but sadly it can also be deadly. If you can prevent pain or even death…would you?
Do all that you can to prevent sun damage on your skin. If you can, wear long sleeved shirts, wear a big hat that covers your face and neck. Wear sunglasses that help protect your eyes. And when it comes to SPF, make sure all skin exposed to light gets covered- year round. Sun protection is something you should be thinking about year round, not just when summer time comes around. Some doctors will recommend SPF 15 or SPF 30. I say, why not SPF 70? It is out there, and since it is something you should use on your face, neck, hands, etc., you might want to get an all natural SPF 70 Sun Block so you won’t be exposed to harmful chemicals from your sun protection.
It doesn’t matter whether you are light or dark skinned…protecting yourself from sun damage is still necessary if you want to prevent all of the things i just mentioned that sun can cause.
Nutrition and Health Benefits
The American Heart Association recommends at least 2 servings of fish per week. Now, I know why… This fish is packed with a lot of healthy and beneficial nutrients! Salmon is not only low in calories, but it is also a great source of important and healthy Omega-3 fatty acids (helps with the immune system,circulatory systems, and helps prevent unwanted inflammation) , B6, B12, Niacin (processes fats in the body and lowers cholesterol), tryptophan (an amino acid which helps reduce headaches and even help stop cravings for unecessary amounts of carbohydrates and sweets), Selenium, High in Vitamin D (an entire day’s worth!), Magnesium, and of course…protein!
Wild or Farmed Salmon?
Many don’t even bother to ask this question or understand the difference between the two, so I have to bring this up! Defintely go for the Wild Salmon. Farmed Salmon has been tested with much higher (up to 10 times the amount compared to Wild Salmon) amounts of toxins, including dioxin, toxaphen, dieldrin, polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB’s). These toxins are found to increase the risk of all cancers, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and can even surpress your immune system – just to name a few things. To keep it short and simple; you don’t want these toxins in your body, and if it is Farmed Salmon, the dangers outweigh the benefits and it is best to avoid them.
You can buy Salmon in many different ways; fresh, frozen, canned, and raw (sushi). This is great because that means there are many ways to prepare this wonderful and healthy fish without ever getting bored!
Fresh Salmon is great as long as you are planning on preparing your meal same day, or at least in the next short while (usually there will be a “best before” date on the package). Frozen Salmon is convenient if you want to buy Salmon in bulk, without having to deal with your fish going bad. Both Fresh and Frozen salmon can be baked, steamed, and the Fresh can also be grilled. Canned is not necessarily my first choice, but if you want it, I personally recommend choosing the canned Salmon with the bones and skin included, which gives you a higher amount of Calcium in it- perfect for Salmon sandwiches which can replace your Tuna sandwiches. Salmon Sushi rolls is another great way to enjoy Salmon! When I first tried raw Salmon, I was nervous that it might taste “fishy”, but if you go to a reputable Sushi Restraunt, it shouldn’t taste “fishy” at all, and you will enjoy it if you already enjoy sushi.
Serving: 4 oz
Calories: 261 (plain, nothing added)
Tags: American Heart Associatation, amino acids, B Vitamins, B12, B6, baked, beneficial, canned, carbohydrates, carbs, circulatory system, fat, fish, fresh, frozen, good for you fat, grilled, Healthy, healthy fat, immune system, inflammation, low calorie, lowers cholesterol, Magnesium, Niacin, omega 3 fatty acids, prevent cancer, process fats, protein, raw, reduce headache, salmon, sandwich, selenium, stop cravings, sugar, sushi, sweets, tryptophan, Vitamin D
1/2 cup Popcorn Kernels
2-3 tablespoons Coconut Oil
Sea Salt (to taste)
Serves: 4-6 cups of cooked popcorn
Step 1) Put a large pot (with lid) on the stove, and turn to medium heat.
Side Notes: If you are wondering why I am not asking you to use a microwave, please read about the Harmful effects of the Microwave.
Step 2) Add the coconut oil to the pan, and coat the bottom of the pan.
Step 3) Add popcorn kernels to the the pot, and put the lid back on the pot. Soon, you will notice the kernels starting to pop, and allow them to do just that!
Step 4) Once the popping starts to slow down, remove the pot from heat. There still may be some popcorn kernels popping, and that’s OK. It is better to have some kernels not pop, then all the kernels pop and you get burnt popcorn.
Step 5) Once you have removed the popcorn from the heat of the stove, add the salt to taste, and stir the popcorn as you add on the salt.
I use Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil rather than butter! But….why? Coconut oil is one of the few (perhaps only) oils that are still good for you when heated. If you are worried about the taste, do not worry! I discovered this way of making popcorn when I looking for a better solution to butter. When you cook your popcorn with Coconut Oil, the popcorn actually taste as if I cooked it with butter- without the effects of butter!
I use Real Salt, by Redmond. This is the only Salt I use, and I love it for not only it’s taste, but wonderful Health benefits.
Health Benefits of Popcorn
Popcorn is high in Fiber, which helps with your digestion. Popcorn also is considered a “Whole Grain”. As long as you don’t drench it in butter, preservatives, and other harmful ingredients (think Movie Popcorn), then you should feel good about your snacking choice. Another great benefit to popcorn, is that it is a low calorie snack.
Tags: coconut oil, corn, corn kernel, easy recipe, healthy recipe, healthy snack, high fiber, high in fiber, low calorie, organic extra virgin coconut oil, Popcorn, popcorn kernel, quick recipe, snack