Tag Archives: Diet

All Things Constipation And How To Fix It

Let’s face it, sometimes things don’t go as planned and we aren’t satisfied with our bowel movement… This can be embarrassing to talk about or admit, so let’s just hash it out here in the privacy of your own computer! Take a look below to see the causes of constipation and how you can solve it:

Reasons for constipation

Constipation has many causes, some of which are:

  • Change in diet, water intake, or not enough fiber/roughage
  • Sedentary lifestyle or lack of daily movement that slows your metabolic processes
  • High levels of stress, emotional trauma, or suppression
  • Disorders or malfunction of the colon, rectum, anal sphincter, central or peripheral nervous system
  • Neglecting the urge to go out of habit
  • A body low in iron does’t have enough energy and does not eliminate well;
  • Aging
  • Pregnancy (and 3 months after birth)
  • Menstruation can cause digestive disturbance during different hormonal phases (luteal, follicular)
  • Certain medications like antidepressants, antihypertensives, analgesics, antipsychotics, and iron supplements. (I recommend iron diglycinate, a form of iron that is less likely to constipate)
  • Other: the presence of a virus, appendicitis, food poisoning, organic, or systemic disease

Tips for relieving constipation

  • Eat fiber with every meal
  • Drink about 1.5 litres of purified, room-temperature water daily
  • Add herbs and spices to your dishes. Certain herbs and spices nourish the organs of digestion and elimination, such as the liver, kidneys, stomach, and spleen. My favorites are cayenne, liquorice, coriander, fennel, ginger, and turmeric
  • Drink 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar with water upon rising. ACV improves the production of stomach acid, which means a more effective breakdown and absorption of foods and better elimination of waste
  • Eat healthy fats. Good sources are coconut, olive, and macadamia oil; avocado; oily fish (sardines, mackerel, herring); butter; nuts; and seeds
  • Avoid excessive protein. Aim for a palm-sized portion per meal
  • Take magnesium bisglycinate. Magnesium is a muscle (intestinal-wall muscles included) and nervous-system relaxant
  • Do some daily breathwork. Without breath, there is tension, blockage, and resistance
  • Move the body. Movement improves metabolism, stimulates intestinal contractions, and tones the muscles in the core that help create healthy bowel movements
  • Squat. Squatting or using a squat platform allows for a more natural angle and pressure. It un-kinks the colon and allows for an easier passage for poop to leave

Read more from the original source here

Protein Packed Snacks To Help You Power Through Your Day

Unfortunately, snacking has a bad rep, but there ARE healthy ways to do it! Usually, when 3 o’clock rolls around that sleepy lazy feeling comes lingering around and you get that urge for another cup of coffee, but there is a healthier way to give yourself a boost. Capture these snack ideas below and put them to the test this week:

Single-serve cottage cheese

Protein: 20 grams per 5-ounce serving
Think
Greek yogurt is the be-all-end-all for high-protein dairy snacks? Think again: A single-serving container of nonfat cottage cheese boasts 3 grams more protein than a typical serving of Greek yogurt and is just 110 calories. Plus, it gives you 125 milligrams of bone-building calcium. (Keep in mind, though, it runs high in sodium, supplying 20 to 30% of your daily quota.) 

Hardboiled egg

Protein: 6 grams per egg
Eggs used to be considered a nutritional no-no due to their high cholesterol content. Today, though, most nutritionists agree that they’re a powerhouse breakfast or snack when enjoyed in moderation. In addition to protein, the humble egg gives you a hearty dose of vitamin D and vitamin B-12 for just 77 calories apiece. Best part: they’re easy to take on the run—just remember to peel them before you go to make eating them on your commute a snap. Even better: some convenience and grocery stores sell hardboiled eggs in packages of two, so they’re a snap to snatch up when traveling.

Peanut butter pack

Protein: 8 grams per 1.15-ounce
You probably wouldn’t throw a jar of peanut butter into your handbag, but for convenience and natural portion control, you can carry individual squeeze packs of nut butters, like those from Justin’s, alongside your wallet and mobile phone. A single-serving portion of Justin’s peanut butter contains 190 calories and is made with just peanuts and palm fruit oil—no added sugars here. Smear on a banana to up the antioxidants and fiber, suggests Oppenheimer.

Mini cheeses or string cheese

Protein: 6 to 8 grams per serving
Personal packages of cheese likeMini Babybel wheels or Sargento sticks are great because they’re individually wrapped for easy toss-in-your-purse portability—and they won’t get squished, either. If you’re trying to lose weight, choose one that says “part-skim” on the label, advises New York City registered dietitian Martha McKittrick. “You can still get some satiating fat but will save calories,” she says.

Single-serve oatmeal packets or cups

Protein: About 4 grams per packet or cup
Just add hot water, stir, and you’ve got a warm bowl of protein- and fiber-packed oats in minutes for 150 to 200 calories per serving (depending on which flavor you choose). Quaker, Dr. McDougall’s,N’Joy, and other companies sell single-serving cups of oatmeal, but you could also simply carry a packet with you—you can ask for a cup at any fast-food place or coffee shop. For times you need a little something extra to fill you up, slice a banana into your oats or toss in a few almonds.


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4 Vegetarian Ways To Get Your Iron

Sorry, meatheads, this one isn’t for you… If you love your veggies but are struggling to get the amount of iron you need daily, take a look at the list below to capture some ideas. These foods are rich in iron and can easily kick meat’s butt to the curb:

1)Spinach (iron) + red bell peppers (C)

There are plenty of ways to pair these two. Raw, minced peppers in a spinach salad works, as does spinach cooked into a stuffed bell pepper. Or try sliced peppers sautéed with spinach. I love this combo with olive oil, garlic, and crushed red pepper.

2)Broccoli (iron) + tomatoes (C)

Toss steamed broccoli florets in sundried tomato pesto. Or to put together dinner in minutes, sauté broccoli and tomatoes with onions, mushrooms, olive oil, garlic, and Italian herb seasoning. Complete the meal with a lean protein (like chicken breast, salmon, or white beans) and a small serving of a healthy carb (such as quinoa or brown rice pasta). To get an iron boost at breakfast, add broccoli and tomatoes to an omelet or frittata.

3)Black beans (iron) + cabbage (C)

One of my favorite ways to combine these two is in black bean tacos, each topped with a generous portion of vinegar-based slaw. Black bean-stuffed cabbage rolls are another great option. Or simply add whole, chilled black beans to a slaw.

4)Dark chocolate (iron) with strawberries (C)

If you didn’t know that dark chocolate is a good source of iron, I’m thrilled to deliver the good news. Melt and drizzle it over whole strawberries. Or add chopped dark chocolate and sliced strawberries to your morning oatmeal, whip them together in a smoothie, or fold them into protein-packed Greek yogurt. For a fun and healthy dessert, try frozen pops—pour almond milk, chopped dark chocolate, and minced strawberries into molds, along with seasonings like fresh grated ginger, chopped mint, or ground cinnamon.


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5 Things To Change In Your Kitchen To Help You Loose Weight

Your environment is key to making the change you wish to see, and when it comes to loosing weight, your kitchen is your main environment to focus on. Considering the kitchen has a major influence on what meals you prep, how you prep them and possibly the amount you consume, take notes from the following on how to arrange your kitchen for the perfect environment for loosing weight:

1)Clear your countertops

Easily visible food provides a constant reminder of its availability, and is therefore likely to be eaten first. So make sure snack foods don’t have a prominent place.

“The last thing you want is a clear cookie jar on the counter.”

2)Get a fruit bowl

That isn’t to say nothing should be on your countertops.

“We know that if the food — the fresh fruit — is out and visible on the counter…that’s an area we know can actually work well,” Story said.

Schwartz said it’s important to make sure the visible fruits and vegetables are ones that require little prep, such as apples, oranges, bananas and grapes, as opposed to pineapples and mangoes.

3)Get some clear containers

A basic principle of snacking is to follow the school lunch program recommendations, which limit calorie-dense foods such as complex starches, fats and proteins but make fruits and vegetables “completely available in whatever quantity people want,” Schwartz said.

Some fruits and vegetables need advance prep and cutting, but once they go into the refrigerator, they should be in clear containers, to remind you of what to grab when you’re hungry between meals.

4)Store meals in single-serving containers

When putting away leftovers, it’s best to put them away in meal-size portions, whether for future lunches or dinners.

At times, calorie-dense dinner leftovers might make for a more appealing snack than baby carrots, but you may be less likely to dig in if you know it will leave you hungry at lunch the next day.

Choosing freezer-safe containers will give you even more storage options.

5)Use your freezer

If you don’t have a definite plan for your leftovers, don’t simply toss them in the refrigerator, Schwartz said.

“[I’m] a big fan of the freezer,” she said, because it allows you to put away food for future use rather than snacking down on leftover chicken or lasagna instead of eating an apple.

It also allows for better meal planning.

“If you have the little single-serving containers and you put them in…you only defrost as much as you’re going to need,” Schwartz said.


What Your Cravings Are Really Trying To Tell You

Cravings are your body’s way of telling your body what it’s not getting enough of… Meaning that chocolate craving, is in fact a need for something else a bit healthier for your body… I know, shocking right? (And slightly disappointing) Decode your cravings below and feed your body what it truly wants:

Chocolate

Are you mad for chocolate?  This may be due to a magnesium deficiency and your body perhaps being low in antioxidants.  Nutritionists call magnesium the great ‘calmer’ as it helps relax muscles, boost the immune system, keeps blood sugar steady, and may add to our serotonin levels – all reasons why we might crave this just before our periods.  Go for the dark chocolate that is 75% or higher cocoa. This blend contains less sugar and is often way higher in antioxidants than milk chocolate or white chocolate (which you should steer clear of at all times). Nuts, seeds and pulses along with leafy green vegetables are also rich in magnesium.  If it is a hit of antioxidants you need, then go for your dark, rich-colored vegetables and fruit like beetroot, blueberries, and raspberries.

Sugary Stuff

If you are constantly seeking sugar, there could be a number of nutrients missing from your body.  An adequate amount of whole real foods especially protein and good quality fat in your diet will dampen down your sugar cravings because often the first sign of an out-of-control blood sugar level is hunger.  Chromium, the mineral which helps to control our blood sugar, is found in almost consistently in most unprocessed foods. Wholegrains like rice, quinoa, green beans, broccoli, nuts, and eggs are great sources of chromium. Foods high in sugar are low in chromium and may actually promote a chromium deficiency.

Coffee-holic?

There’s little doubt that caffeine is addictive but a sudden out of the ordinary desire to have espresso could be your body’s way of saying it requires more iron. This is quite common during a menstrual cycle. Iron brings oxygen to our cells and without it we can feel quite tired and seek coffee as a quick pick me up.  Increase your iron stores with red meat and green vegetables.  There are also a wide range of supplements on the market, but these should only be taken after a blood test.


Decode more cravings from the original source here:

http://foodmatters.tv/content/cravings-what-they-actually-mean

6 Sneaky Ways To Incorporate Greens In Your Diet

It’s no secret that leafy greens play a vital role in one’s diet and that they are necessary for a healthy lifestyle. But sometimes eating salads and cooking broccoli to incorporate greens everyday can get a little old and routine… Here are 6 ways you can incorporate greens in your diet without saying ‘blah’….

Banana Mango Green Smoothie Bowl

With Food + Love
With Food + Love

Smoothies and smoothie bowls are a great way to sneak some greens into an otherwise sweet breakfast.

Get the recipe

Sweet Potato Kale Hash

Minimalist Baker
Minimalist Baker

Toss some greens into an easy hash and top with a tofu scramble for vegan breakfast excellence.

Get the recipe

Vegetable Fried Rice With Spinach

The Roasted Root
The Roasted Root

Another easy way to get more greens is to include them in simple stir fries and veggie dishes, like this fried rice.

Get the recipe

Super Green Chia Pudding

Poppies and Papayas
Poppies and Papayas

Yes, you can even add greens to chia pudding—give it a try!

Get the recipe

Toast With Radishes + Dandelion Greens

Love + Lemons
Love + Lemons

When in doubt, put it on toast. This recipe starts with a base of herbed sunflower-seed spread and tops it with sautéed dandelion greens, edamame, and radishes for the perfect spring toast.

Get the recipe

Swiss Chard Wraps With Thai Chicken

Half Baked Harvest
Half Baked Harvest

Lower maintenance than collard greens, Swiss chard makes great wraps for this Thai Sweet Chili Chicken with Peanut Sauce.

Get the recipe


Read more from the original source:
http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-23133/12-delicious-ways-to-eat-more-leafy-greens-this-week.html

The Beginners Guide To ‘Clean Eating’

If you’ve already made the vow to start ‘eating clean’ or living a healthier  lifestyle, or hey, maybe your on the verge and just don’t know where to start… Take a peek at these tips below to help get your started and form healthier habits:

1. Eat “real” food.

Choose food that is in or close to its natural state, and steer clear of highly processed or refined foods. If the food comes in a package or box and contains more than one ingredient on the label, it’s a good sign that it’s processed and no longer in its natural state.

2. Buy organic.

Buying organic limits your exposure to hormones, antibiotics, chemicals, and pesticides. Organic foods typically have more vitamins, minerals andnutrients, and many say that organic foods have more flavor.

So how do you increase the amount of organic foods in your diet? Start with replacing the foods that tend to have the highest levels of hormones, chemicals, or pesticides, like fruits, vegetables, meats, and dairy.

Remember to look for foods that are certified organic, not foods that say “made with” or” contains organic ingredients,” as these foods may only have a small number of organic ingredients.

3. Read labels.

Choose foods with minimal ingredients. The more ingredients on the label, typically the more processed the food is. Yogurt, for example, can be a great addition to your morning smoothie bowl or homemade granola, but the wrong brand can have as much sugar as a candy bar.

Check the label for plain yogurt that doesn’t contain added sugar, color, or stabilizers on the label. Still want your yogurt to have a sweet taste? Sweeten it yourself using more natural sweeteners like honey or maple syrup or—even better—add some sliced fruit such as raspberries, blackberries, or blueberries.

4. Eliminate or reduce wheat.

Substitute wheat with wholesome wheat-free alternatives. Most of the wheat we consume in America is highly refined and processed. Eliminating processed wheat in your diet can help eliminate many gastrointestinal issues such as bloating, diarrhea, constipation, and gas, etc.


 

Original Source:

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-24160/8-small-ways-you-can-start-eating-clean-today.html

3 Foods To Give You Strong Healthy Abs

Summer is just around the corner and so is bikini/ swimsuit season! Whether you want washboard abs that all the ladies will check out or strong toned abs that will impress the men, these three foods are necessary to include in your diet to 6 pack abs!

GREEK YOGURT

© livfriis
© livfriis

Besides being packed with 23 grams of muscle-building protein per cup, Greek yogurt is an awesome source of calcium and probiotics, both of which can help reveal your six-pack, says Spano. In one European Journal of Clinical Nutrition study, people who drank a fermented milk beverage with probiotics every day lost a significant amount of abdominal fat that hangs out between your muscles and organs. However, those who didn’t drink up lost zero belly fat.

To make Greek yogurt work for your ab goals, make sure yours says that it contains “live and active cultures” right on the label. And stay away from the flavored varieties. Their sugar can both spur belly fat and fluid retention around your midsection, says registered dietitian Cassandra Forsythe, Ph.D., R.D., C.S.C.S., Girls Gone Strong advisory board member.

WHEY PROTEIN POWDER

© PixelsAway
© PixelsAway

This source of protein also includes branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs), which decrease exercise-induced muscle damage and increase muscle recovery to help your workouts score you the strongest core possible, says Spano. Plus, in one study published in The FASEB Journal, dieters who doubled their protein intake in general, not necessarily from whey, lost more fat and maintained more muscle than those who ate the recommended daily amount.

If you’re skipping out on protein from dairy because of an allergy, whey protein generally doesn’t cause any stomach upset, bloating, or gas, even in women who are lactose intolerant, says Spano. Use whey protein powder to help you eat about 110 grams of protein per day.

WHOLE GRAINS

© egal
© egal

Complex carbs, especially from whole grains, are vital to powering your workouts and reaching your fitness goals, says Forsythe. Plus, fiber from whole grains reduces stomach fat and increases your body’s levels of satiety hormones that help keep you from overeating, says Spano.

In one Pennsylvania State University study, when dieters got all of their grains from whole grains over the course of 12 weeks, they lost about the same amount of weight as those who avoided grains altogether. But those who ate whole grains lost more fat from their midsections. Why, hello there, abs!

Forsythe’s favorite grains for defined abs are brown rice and wheat berries, which are über filling without all the bloating that some grains can cause in some fiber-sensitive women.


 

Read more from the original source:

http://www.womenshealthmag.com/weight-loss/food-for-abs/eat-this

How To Keep A Happy Healthy Gut

A Happy, Healthy gut takes nurturing and tending to a little bit each day! A healthy microbiome does a multitude of things for the body: decrease risk for disease, help us absorb the right vitamins we need, help us maintain a happy mood and healthy weight and many more… See below on how to maintain a Happy Healthy Gut:

1. Eat probiotic foods every day.

Probiotic foods are those that have been fermented and allowed to grow these helpful bugs, such as yogurt; kefir; sauerkraut; kimchee; miso; natto; and pickled fish, meats, and eggs. Since probiotics are easily damaged by heat and processing, look for good-quality sources in the refrigerator section that contain live bacteria.

2. Eat prebiotic foods.

These are generally carbohydrates that are especially rich in substances like inulin, arabinogalactans, and fructooligosaccharides. You don’t need to put those terms on your shopping list, though—just choose onions, garlic, asparagus, jicama, or Jerusalem artichokes to help keep those gut bugs well fed and happy.

3. Don’t eat late at night.

This is called “pruning a little.” A daily mini-fast from 7 p.m. until your breakfast the next day to allow a little bit of your microbiome to “die off” each time. This is equivalent to trimming your microbiome so that it can continue to grow with the healthy probiotic bacteria that you’ll be adding and nourishing.


 

Original Source:

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-24340/3-easy-ways-to-keep-your-gut-happy-a-nutritionist-explains.html