الجمعة، 1 يونيو 2012
QUESTION: Dear Tom: I've been going to the gym for the past year now, but I have only lost 2 pounds. I eat about 1800 calories a day and I do 3 cardio and 3 weight training sessions a week. I am 5 feet 5 inches and 128 lbs. I would like to be at 120 lbs. To lose 8 more lbs isn't a lot to ask, but I'm really frustrated. I've been VERY persistent, and I rarely cheat except once each weekend, but at this rate, it will take me another 4 years for me to reach my goal! Please help!
ANSWER: Don't worry, it won't take another 4 years! In fact, you can reach your target wt. within the next month if you start getting feedback, charting results and making some strategic changes to your program.
First, it's important that you understand how a year could go by with almost no progress.
Have you been doing the same nutrition, same calories, same cardio and same workout for the entire past year with no changes? If so, then you shouldn't be suprised if you've continued to get the SAME results (very little).
If you do more of the same, you usually get more of the same.
Caloric intake, for example is not something you calculate once and then never pay attention to again. Calories have to be calculated and customized for each individual in the beginning and then adjusted continuously in "real time" during the course of a fat loss program, based on actual results.
Just because you start at 1800 doesn't mean your caloric intake should stay there. Calories may need to be increased or decreased depending on whether your goals, your body weight and your activity levels change and based on your weekly progress (or lack of).
Which brings me to another point. I am a huge fan of using progress charts. There is a saying in business management and sports coaching:
"What gets measured gets done."
When you start "keeping score" and tracking performance right down to the numbers, it's almost miraculous how this awareness of how you're doing translates into improved results.
When you track your body composition results every week, if a week or two goes by with no results, then you don't continue with more of what got you no results, you change some variable in your program immediately!
An old Turkish proverb that says,
"No matter how far you've traveled down the wrong road, always turn back!"
Of course, you don't have to throw out your entire program, you can simply "tweak" ONE or maybe two variables within the same program.
Also, when you measure, track and analyze muscle versus fat (body composition), instead of just scale weight, you might even discover you've gained some lean body mass and this offsets the drop on the scale (which means it's possible you made more progress than you thought).
Now, back to the calories. To break a plateau, you can take a reduction in calories, or an increase in activity, either of which will create a deficit if you are currently in energy balance, or increase your existing caloric deficit.
1800 calories may not provide a large enough deficit for some women, and in fact, the majority of women your height, weight and activity level usually are losing fat safely and successfully on 1500-1600 calories per day. (for men about 2200-2500 calories, avg.)
At the end of the day, fat loss boils down to calories in versus calories out, so if you plateau, you may need a simple calorie reduction, provided you don't restrict too low for too long (which tends to trigger your body's "starvation response.")
As for your cardio program, 3 days a week of cardio works for many people, but usually, I would consider three weekly cardio sesssions a maintenenance workout or at best a starting point for beginners,NOT a "maximum fat loss" program.
Example: this week, you could increase your cardio from 3 sessions to 4 sessions. If you combine the decrease in food intake with an increase in calories burned through activity, that will almost certainly get you burning fat again.
If it does, then stay with 4 days a week of cardio. If not, the next week go up to 5 days a week. Repeat this simple "feedback loop" process as many times and for as long as necessary.
Also remember that more (often) is not always better. You can also increase the intensity and get more calories burned in same amount of time. This feedback loop process can be used to make decisions about your training intensity, duration and type, as well as frequency.
Whichever strategy you choose to break the plateau, remember Albert Einstein's definition of insanity:
"Insanity is to keep doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result."
Although this seems like common sense to some people, what happened to you is really quite common because it does appear that you're doing everything you're "supposed to be doing" with perfectly good intentions.
You have have all the key elements there: You're exercising (weights and cardio). You're watching your nutrition, and you've been disciplined and consistent in following it.
The trouble with many popular programs – even good ones – is that they are too dogmatic. Their entire program may revolve around "X" number of calories, "X" days per week of cardio and "X" days a week of weights….
And you're not allowed to "tamper" with that "holy grail" formula.
I can understand the rationale for a simple diet and exercise prescription for a beginner in order to not confuse them with too many choices, but what if it doesnt work after a month, three months, six months, A WHOLE YEAR? What if there are no options, what then?
In NLP, there's a principle, (borrowed from cybernetics), called The Law of Requisite Variety, which says,
"The person with the most choices and the most flexibility is the person with the most power and the greatest chance for success."
You need to know what to do when you're not getting results… you need options and choices for breaking plateaus, and that's important because plateaus happen to everyone – including me.
Some people think that hitting a fat loss plateau means there's something wrong with them. But plateaus are natural and normal. In fact, you could look at it this way:
Exercise is a stress. Dieting is a stress. It's natural for your body to adapt to them. When you adapt, you must place a new "positive stress" onthe body if you want continued improvement.
If you want to learn more details about how to change your program to break plateaus and make continuous progress as fast as safely possible, then I recommend you take a look at Burn the Fat, Feed The Muscle (BFFM).
BFFM has flexibility, feedback and performance tracking built right into it. Chapter 4 in BFFM teaches the "BFFM feedback loop method", and shows you how to chart progress and adjust your diet and workouts on a weekly basis, to keep you making progress or get you back on track if your progress stalls out.
There is no reason to allow even a few weeks, let alone an entire year to go by without results. But you can't expect to get different results if you continue doing more of what's not working.
Keep after it! Be persistent – but also be flexible! <<< Watch This Amazing Video For More Information >>>
Source White Market
I'm going to talk about something today that most of you have probably never heard… that there is a distinction between good trans fats and bad trans fats. There is some evidence that the good trans fats can help you with fat loss, muscle building, and even cancer prevention, while the bad trans fats have been shown to cause heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and the general "blubbering" of your body.
I'm sure most of you have heard all of the ruckus in the news over the last few years about just how bad man-made trans fats are for your health. If you've been a reader of my newsletter and my Truth about Six Pack Abs e-book program, then you definitely know my opinion that these substances are some of the most evil food additives of all and are found in the vast majority of all processed foods and fast foods on the market today.
In my opinion, man-made trans fats are right up there with smoking in terms of their degree of danger to your health. After all, they are one of THE MAIN factors for the explosion of heart disease since approximately the 1950′s.
With all of the talk about trans fats in the news these days, I wanted to clarify some things, particularly regarding bad trans fats vs. good trans fats. If you've never heard of good trans fats before, let me explain in a bit.
The Bad Trans Fats
First, the bad trans fats I'm referring to are the man-made kind. These are represented by any artificially hydrogenated oils. The main culprits are margarine, shortening, and partially hydrogenated oils that are in most processed foods, junk foods, and deep fried foods.
These hydrogenated oils are highly processed using harsh chemical solvents like hexane (a component of gasoline), high heat, pressure, have a metal catalyst added, and are then deodorized and bleached. A small % of the solvent is allowed to remain in the finished oil. This has now become more of an industrial oil rather than a food oil, but somehow the FDA still allows the food manufacturers to put this crap in our food at huge quantities, even with the well documented health dangers.
These hydrogenated oils cause inflammation inside of your body, which signals the deposition of cholesterol as a healing agent on artery walls. Hence, hydrogenated oil = inflammation = clogged arteries. You can see why heart disease has exploded since this crap has been loaded into our food supply over the last 5 to 6 decades.
As time goes on, and science continues to unveil how deadly these oils really are, I feel that eventually they will be illegal and banned from use. The labeling laws were just the first step. In fact, certain countries around the world have already banned the use of hydrogenated oils in food manufacturing or at least set dates to phase them out for good.
However, keep in mind that as companies are starting to phase out the use of hydrogenated oils in processed foods, they are replacing them, in most instances, with highly refined polyunsaturated oils such as soybean oil, cottonseed oil, corn oil, etc, etc. These are still heavily processed oils using high heat, solvents, deodorizers, and bleaching agents. Even refined oils are known to produce inflammation in your body…a far cry from natural sources of healthy fats.
Don't be fooled by the new onslaught of foods claiming "trans fat free"… if they use heavily refined oils (even if they're non-hydrogenated), it's still pure evil for your body, and very inflammatory.
Once again, for the best results, your best bet is avoiding highly processed foods altogether and choose whole, natural, minimally processed foods. Your body will thank you!
The Good Trans Fats
Ok, after having trash talked the man-made trans fats, let me clearly state that there is such a thing as healthy natural trans fats. Natural trans fats are created in the stomachs of ruminant animals such as cattle, sheep, goats, etc. and make their way into the fat stores of the animals.
Therefore, the milk fat and the fat within the meat of these animals can provide natural healthy trans fats (best in grass-fed organic versions only).
Natural trans fats in your diet have been thought to have some potential benefit to aid in both muscle building and fat loss efforts. However, keep in mind that the quantity of healthy trans fats in the meat and dairy of ruminant animals is greatly reduced by mass-production methods of farming and their grain and soy heavy diets. Meat and dairy from grass-fed, free-range animals always have much higher quantities of these beneficial fats.
One such natural trans fat that you may have heard of is called conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) and has been marketed by many weight loss companies. Keep in mind that these man-made CLA pills you see in the stores may not be the best way to get CLA in your diet. They are artificially made from plant oils in a manner similar to hydrogenation, instead of the natural process that happens in ruminant animals. Once again, man-made just doesn't compare to the benefits of natural sources.
Here's a great site I found that I use to order all of my healthy grass-fed beef and other free range meats. The service is impeccable and they deliver right to your doorstep in a sealed cooler. It's worth it to know that you and your family are actually eating meat that's good for you instead of the normal grocery store junk.
Now that all of your labels should be listing grams of trans fat, keep in mind that if a quantity of trans fat is listed on a meat or dairy product, it is most likely the natural good trans fats that we've discussed here (*I only recommend grass-fed meat or dairy). Otherwise, if the quantity of trans fat is listed on any processed foods, it is most likely the dangerous unhealthy crap from artificially hydrogenated oils, so stay away!
One more important note about food labels and trans fat listings… keep in mind that food manufacturers are allowed to label a food "trans fat free" if 1 serving size contains less than 0.5 grams of trans fat. So you may see some products with hydrogenated oils as one of their main ingredients, but if they make the serving size small enough so that it contains less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving, they can label it as trans fat free… now that's BS! just another example of our broken system!
Source White Market
Cooking oils are a necessary ingredient in the preparation of many different kinds of foods. When sautéing or frying help keep the food from burning. When baking, oils help keep the food moist. Oils are also added to sauces and dressings. However, all cooking oils are not created equal. Some oils are best suited to particular types of cooking, and certain ones are healthier than others.
While there are literally hundreds of different oils from which to choose only about 15-20 of them are most commonly used in the modern kitchen. The more common cooking oils on the market today include: vegetable oil; canola oil, olive oil; butter; peanut oil; sesame oil; sunflower oil; and margarine. Like I say there are lots more but right now we'll just focus on the ones you're most likely to see sitting on the shelf at the grocery store.
The production of cooking oils stretches back more than 5,000 years. In ancient times, people began heating oily plant products until the plants exuded oil that they could collect and use. Olive oil was being produced in southern Europe as early as 3,000 B.C. and soy oil first appeared in Asia around 2,000 B.C. Other cultures—such as those in Latin America, North America, Africa and others used peanuts, sunflowers, palm kernels and even coconut to produce cooking oil.
Although the basic steps have remained the same for thousands of years, modern science has significantly improved the cooking oil production process. Some types of oils including olive, peanut and certain sunflower and coconut oils can be cold-pressed, meaning that they undergo minimal processing. These oils tend to be light and flavorful but not suitable for use in all cooking scenarios. For example, olive oil has a relatively low smoke point, meaning that it's not ideal for certain types of cooking such as frying foods.
Vegetable oils that can't be cold pressed are first cleaned and ground before being pressed in order to extract the oil from them. After extraction, the oil is refined and washed in a centrifuge and then washed again. After some further refining, it is filtered or distilled and then packaged for sale.
Butter is also frequently used as cooking oil. It is usually made from sweet cream and is salted. Butter produced on the farm uses the cream directly from whole milk. Today's commercially-produced butter is made by extracting small amounts of cream from whey, a by-product of cheese-making, using large centrifuges.
Now let's talk about margarine and get that part of the discussion out of the way. Margarine is a butter substitute that has been around since the late 1800s. It is made from vegetable oils, animal fats or a mixture of both. Its manufacturing process involves the addition of hydrogen atoms to the fat molecules, making them more saturated and raising the point at which they melt. As a result, margarine remains a solid at room temperature. This process is known as "hydrogenation," and requires the presence of a metal catalyst and temperatures of about 500°F (260°C).
All cooking oils contain fats. But as you should already know by now, all fats are not the same. Some fats are healthier for our bodies than others. Margarine is far and away the worst oil on the list. Most of margarines are loaded with trans-fats (the really bad fats), along with lots of artificial ingredients so do yourself a favor and just avoid them. When you want to spread something on your bread or pancakes, you're far better off choosing butter.
While you certainly shouldn't be gnawing on a stick of butter every day, the occasional use of butter is actually a good thing. First, butter is a rich source of vitamins and minerals. It also contains fatty acids, which are used as an energy source and can help protect against certain diseases and conditions. And, in moderation, the cholesterol contained in butter is good for the body. The type of cholesterol found in butter helps maintain intestinal health.
Lastly, let's look at how the other cooking oils—vegetable oil; canola oil, olive oil; peanut oil; sesame oil; and sunflower oil—compare with one another.
•Vegetable oil: Most vegetable oils are 'good' fats that have been altered or hydrogenated. Remember hydrogenation from the margarine manufacturing process? This process increases the level of 'bad' fats found in vegetable oils. Some manufacturers try to offset the bad side of vegetable oil by claiming that they're high in Omega-6s, a polyunsaturated fat that is good for the body when balanced with Omega-3 fatty acids. But that's not the case with vegetable oils and it is certainly not the case with the American diet, where we typically eat 20-to-1 Omega-6 to Omega-3.
•Canola oil: This oil is generally has less than 7% saturated fat, high in monounsaturated fat and has a beneficial Omega-3 fatty acid profile. As such, it is endorsed by the American Dietetic Association and the American Heart Association has one of the healthier oil choices for cooking.
•Olive oil: Considered by many to be the 'king' of cooking oils, olive oil is available in a lot of different varieties. Many people consider this to be one of—if not the the—most healthy cooking oils around. It's got lots of monounsaturated fats, which have been linked to a lowered risk of coronary disease.
•Peanut oil: This oil is frequently used in Asian countries. Though it is higher in saturated fats than olive oil, it's also a good source of monounsaturated fats. Peanut oil can be flavorful so it's not suited for all dishes. Persons with peanut allergies need to stay away from peanut oil.
•Sesame oil: Sesame oil has a high proportion of Omega-6 fatty acids (41%) but it has no Omega-3s. And while it's low on saturated fat, (13 grams), it's also fairly low on monounsaturated fats (46 grams compared to 77 grams in olive oil).
•Sunflower oil: This cooking oil comes in pretty low on the saturated fat scale (only 11 grams compared to 14 in olive oil), it is not such a great source of monounsaturated fat (20 grams versus 73 grams in olive oil).
The last thing I want to touch on here is the Omega-6 to Omega-3 ratio I mentioned earlier. Research suggests that our bodies are hard-wired to function best with a one-to-one ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3 fatty acids. But in today's Western diets very high ratios of Omega-6 to Omega-3 (up to 20 to 1) is the norm. This creates a host of health problems including cardiovascular disease and more. Lower ratios have been linked to prolonged healthy outcomes and reduced incidents of disease and illness.
So there you have some information about cooking oils that should help you to make an informed decision regarding which oil you'll be using next in the kitchen.
Source White Market
Social Anxiety or Social anxiety or social phobia is referred to as social anxiety considerable distress and some problems during normal functioning of daily life. It may either be diagnosed as a specific disorder according to some specific situations or a generalized disorder. Generalized disorder is characterized by a constant, intense and chronic fear of being evaluated by others and not having any confidence in his or her action due to the fear of constant embarrassment and failure. This chronic fear is either through a perceived or actual constant scrutiny by others. Although these fears may seem totally irrational to some of us who perceive it, these are very hard to over come.
For a person to be scientifically diagnosed with social anxiety disorders he or she should meet the below mentioned criteria:
There is clearly foreseeable and marked fear of situations in which the person has to interact with totally unrelated and unknown individuals
Any chance of a public or social response provokes a severe anxiety attack
The involved person is totally aware that the fear is totally irrational.
Although a social situation is always avoided, if endured is totally in dread.
The avoidance, fear or anticipation of such a situation severely affects person's normal routine in daily life.
For individuals under the age of 18 it should persist for more than 6 months.
Irrational fear should not be a physiological effect of any drugs or medicine and should not be diagnosed under any other medical condition.
The symptoms of this disorder can be categorized into mainly three aspects; Cognitive aspects, Behavioral aspect, Physiological aspect. We will discuss them one by one.
Cognitive aspects: In this aspect the sufferer consistently fears dread over how he represented himself to others, due to this they become overly self conscious. They always pay high attention to what ever they are doing and set very high standards for themselves. The sufferer constantly tries to put a good impression on others, but after every encounter he feels he has not been able to succeed in doing so. They constantly over analyze the situation and look for the slightest possibility of where they may have been embarrassed or humiliated.
Behavioral aspects: The fear of any situation social or public leads to the sufferer undergoing many behavioral changes which exceed the boundaries of shyness and enter into the realm of constant social avoidance and occupational impairment. This also leads to the surfacing of many physical symptoms such as stomach pain, dry mouth, sweating and various others. The sufferer also constantly tries to avoid any eye contact and you will also be able to see constant shaking.
Erythrophobia: Facial blushing or erythrophobia is a sudden reddening of the face that occurs spontaneously or in response to stressful stimuli. Even though Erythrophobia isn't one of the most widely recognized phobias in our society, it is fairly common among people who exhibit social anxiety symptoms and is just starting to become more and more accepted as a real phobia and certainly an overlooked, but more and more common in todays patients. Ask anyone with Social Anxiety if they suffer from facial blushing, and most definitely all of them will tell you Yes. I believe if we start treating more patients with blushing problems, as a special group of individuals who need different treatment than those who don't suffer from blushing problems, we would see a lot more different characteristics between the two groups that must each be treated differently. I believe by getting to the root cause of blushing, and treating those issues specially rather than just categorizing them in to a group who have social anxiety – the success rate of treatment would skyrocket. Patients who have constant blushing problems from shyness, embarrassment, or other stressful situations should not be put on medication for social anxiety. Their blushing problems may physically worsen, thus contradicting the entire purpose of treating the anxiety in the first place.
Physiological aspects: These are essentially the same that we encounter during an anxiety attack. In children there is a constant weeping and throwing tantrums and also shutting themselves out. In adults it may lead to tears, nausea, palpitations, chest pain and other symptoms.
Although there are no definite theories about the cause of social disorders, with advancement of neurosciences several theories have been put up into the air. Some of them have been summarized below
Family factors also play an important role in the advent of social disorders; it is much more likely for a person coming from a highly disturbed childhood to develop such kind of social awkwardness. Also children who have had a bad bonding with their mothers are twice as likely to develop social disorders
A previous negative social experience involving the person being humiliated or embarrassed may put the person totally in fear of social gatherings and occasions
Some substances like drugs, benzodiazepines, alcohol when used in excess also play an important part in inducing social awkwardness, especially when someone who is addicted tries to dry himself from all these substances.
Most of the successful treatments are totally depended on the early diagnosis of that disorder. As social disorders are not given due importance during primary care, they are usually diagnosed after they set of complications such as clinical depression and also substance abuse. Some of the major and common treatment methods involve Psychotherapy, involving group sessions with other people who suffer from the same kind of disorders. You share your experiences with them try to speak among those people and get your confidence back online. There also a technique that involves gradual public exposure that sometimes can be really unpleasant but if used properly can be highly successful.
Pharmacological treatments involve intake of a specific class of drugs called as SSRI's, Selective Serotonin reuptake Inhibitors, this the first choice when it comes to drugs for the treatment of generalized social phobias. Other drugs that can be used are selective benzodiazepines, and RIMA's Reverse Inhibitors of Monoamine oxidase subtype A.
Ultimately it depends on the individual and their symptoms. I believe that symptoms must really be taken in to consideration before looking to treat or diagnose Social Anxiety in any form. Sometimes, if you take away the symptoms, you will take away the anxiety. However, people are so narrow minded these days on looking at it vice versa that medication is the first thing that comes to mind when looking to treat any disorder for that matter. However, if we start looking more carefully at the actual symptoms and diagnosing and treating the symptoms one by one, you may find that cause for medication may not be in check after all.
Source White Market
"Body wraps" have been around for ages in the weight loss and spa industry. Claims include loss of body weight, loss of body fat, and loss of inches. Infomercials for rubber "waist belts" are also back on TV and similar claims are made for these types of wraps as well. What few people realize is that there is a huge difference between losing fat and losing inches. When your body fat decreases, your circumference measurements will usually also decrease, but "fat" loss and "inch" loss are not one in the same. If you don't know how to tell the difference, you could be falling for one of the oldest, most notorious fitness and weight loss scams in the book.
The truth is, body wraps and waist belts do not shrink fat cells or burn body fat – no matter what type of wrap is used: bandages, plastic, foil, vinyl, or rubber and regardless of what you are wrapped in: herbs, minerals, enzymes, seaweed, clay, or mud – it doesn't matter. Fat can only be lost with a caloric deficit from a reduction in food intake, an increase in activity or ideally, a combination of both.
Whenever you see fat loss claims for wraps or any other product which doesn't involve a caloric deficit created though nutrition or exercise, the "scam alarm" should go off in your head, and you should always stay away, no matter how compelling the sales pitch.
Furthermore, the companies making fat loss claims would be in hot water with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) if they were investigated and caught because claims for body fat reduction from wraps cannot be supported with scientific evidence.
The FTC as well as numerous state attorney general's offices have already taken action against body wrap companies in the past for false advertising and unsupported claims. Some companies simply had to stop making false claims, others had to pay stiff fines as well. The problem, from a legal and ethical standpoint, is the claim being made. Remember, "inches" and "fat" are not the same thing.
Some types of wraps can definitely take off inches (for example, they might reduce the circumference measurement of your waist, hips, arms and legs), but it's not fat, its water weight and fluid, and the results are temporary.
Suppose this claim is made in an advertisement:
* Lose Up To 15 inches in 1 Hour! *
This is legal advertising because the claim "lose inches" might be supportable (if enough circumference measurements are taken with a tape measure at enough sites, that might add up to a total of 15 inches in circumference loss)
However I believe that these types of claims are misleading (and probably intentionally so), because "inches" is not the same as body fat but the product vendors know that you might easily confuse "inches" with "fat."
Contrast that claim with this one:
* Lose Body Fat without diet or exercise in 1 Hour!*
That claim is totally false and scientifically unsupportable.
If fat loss could be achieved with body wraps, it would be very easy to test and prove.
Body composition (body fat) testing (rather than measurements of inches) could be performed before and after the wrap, and the answer ("does it work") would become easily exposed.
Since it doesn't work, you won't find any wrap people accepting your challenge to allow you to do independent body composition testing, nor will you find a shred of scientific evidence showing reduction of bodyfat from wraps.
Unfortunately, bogus fat loss claims are still quite widespread, as a simple Internet search for "body wrap" will demonstrate. The most frequently used claims however, are for loss of "inches."
The inches lost simply come from loss of fluid. And guess what – those inches (and or water weight) will come right back in days if not hours, as soon as you completely re-hydrate yourself.
Other claims made for body wraps include detoxification, improved circulation and tighter, smoother and clearer skin. Most health and fitness researchers, as well as government agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will tell you that these claims are "debatable" and mostly anecdotal.
Some experts even warn that certain types of wraps can be dangerous, mainly due to the rapid and excessive fluid loss/dehydration.
If you want to get wrapped because you find it relaxing or you consider it a "spa-like" treatment, that's one thing. Just remember, wraps have absolutely nothing to do with fat loss.
I'd suggest completely avoiding any companies that advertise fat loss when it's only water and inches you're losing, because a dishonest company is one you don't want to patronize at all.
One last thing – this is a timely subject because although "body wraps" have been around for ages and it's old news, I noticed that infomercials for "waist belts" or "sauna wraps" are back on TV in force and I see that they are replaying the ads over and over again, which means people are buying it.
Everything I just said about body wraps also applies to those rubber waist belts too.
On a web search I just did for those rubber belt waist wraps, I noticed some of the websites are STILL making claims like "Melt fat" (totally bogus, unsupported and illegal claim).
Other sites seem to be wary of the FTC paying them a visit, so they do a whole song and dance around the legal issues by saying stuff like, "sweat away inches," "therapeutic heat", "target your problem areas" and so on. Even if these claims are not illegal, the promotions are still deceptive…
The professional fitness model is pictured taking off the rubber belt, revealing ripped six pack abs below… as if those abs are a result of wearing the belt! Wishful thinking! These are professional models, folks. They got the abs the same way everyone else with abs got them – with a calorie deficit from a combination of strict diet and hard training!
Wraps and waist belt products might take off some inches or water weight, but they can't take off a single ounce of fat. Buyer beware.
Programs like Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle are focused on FAT LOSS, not water loss or loss of inches. When body fat decreases, circumferences in inches will also decrease, but "fat" lost and "inches" lost are not one in the same.<<< Watch This Amazing Video For More Information >>>
Source White Market
So we've been told over and over again that we should slather on the sunscreen when you go out in the sun to prevent skin cancer, right? Well, guess what? Think again! Many of the common chemicals in most commercial sunscreen lotions actually can CONTRIBUTE to cancer, stubborn abdominal fat (due to the xenoestrogens in sunscreen chemicals), and many other health problems.
Some of that sunscreen may be as damaging or more dangerous to your health than going without any sunscreen at all!
While there is still some risk in spending time in the summer sun without sunscreen, your sunscreen itself can pose a bigger health risk. The chemicals in sunscreen are very harsh and are rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream.
First of all, if you haven't read Mike Geary's article about the benefits of small doses of daily sunshine, click here. It's important to understand why small amounts of daily sunshine (WITHOUT burning) is important to your health, vitamin D production, hormone balance, and skin cancer prevention.
Now back to harsh chemical sunscreens… Did you know that most sunscreens only protect against the burning UVB rays? Well, it is a fact that the UVA rays are damaging to your skin as well. What kinds of chemical concoctions are you putting on your skin that are absorbing into your bloodstream? Numerous studies have raised serious concerns about these chemicals' safety:
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) released a new study showing that nearly all Americans are contaminated with oxybenzone, a widely-used sunscreen ingredient. This chemical so far has shown potential links to allergies, hormone disruption, and cell damage, as well as low birth weight in babies whose mothers are exposed during pregnancy.
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) also has a guide that helps you to determine how chemical-laden your current sunscreen is.
Although sunscreens are meant for external use only, the popular 'spray on' sunscreens end up being inhaled as well, and are particularly dangerous. While inhaled particles of any size can pose a health risk, tiny nanoparticles — ultra-tiny particles used in many of these formulations — can more easily penetrate linings and tissues in your body and cause inflammation and increase risk of cancer or other respiratory issues.
Ok, so what to do to help prevent sunburn and photo aging from the sun?
Remember from Mike's article near the top of this page, that small daily doses of sunshine (10-30 minutes daily over most of body) can help to increase your Vitamin D levels in your body and actually PROTECT you and reduce your risk of skin cancer… The important key phrase there is "small daily dose" without burning.
If you are going to get more sun than that… The best and most natural sunscreen you can get if you are going to be spending more than a half hour out in the hot summer sun are the sunblocks (mineral based) that contain zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide as their active ingredients. These ingredients are safe, natural ingredients that physically block UVA and UVB rays by sitting on top of the skin instead of absorbing into the skin, and there are no health concerns about using these natural sunblocks on your skin.
The downside of these types of natural physical sunblocks is that they tend to leave a white coating on your skin so they don't look as appealing as the chemical sunscreens which are invisible since they absorb into your skin. So the other option is simply to make sure to cover up with clothing if you don't want to use a mineral-based sunblock that makes the skin look white.
There may be some zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide based sunscreens available that do a better job of not leaving such a white layer on the skin, but you might have to experiment with different brands to find one.
And most important, to protect your skin and minimize the damage the sun can do to your skin…
EAT your sunscreen to best protect your skin against sun damage and cancer
Ok, I'm not talking about squeezing that stuff out of the bottle and actually eating it!
I am talking about protecting your skin from the inside out with nutrition! One of the best ways to prevent sun damage, and protect your skin, is with your diet. Yes, you can actually eat your own healthy version of natural sunscreen by following these recommendations:
First, be sure to eat plenty of omega-3 rich foods in your daily diet. Research studies show that eicosapentaenoic acid (also called EPA) in omega 3 fats helps prolong the time that it takes skin to get burned during sun exposure, and reduces your chances of skin cancer. Omega-3 fatty acids best sources come from grass-fed beef, free range whole eggs, and cold-water wild caught fish like salmon, sardines, and mackerel.
But keep this in mind: An optimal balance of omega-3′s to omega-6′s (1:1 to 2:1) is critical for many, many health factors, including skin health. If you are eating much more omega 6 fatty acids in comparison to omega 3's, you actually increase your chances of skin cancer from the sun.
It is a well-known fact that people who regularly eat a diet higher in saturated fats and omega-3 fats tend to have much smoother, softer skin. In contrast, a diet high in trans fats and excessively high omega-6 fats ages skin and when people consume that type of diet they tend to have older-looking skin and wrinkles.
So, here's how to eat the healthiest kind of sunscreen that is best for your body and your skin:
To sum up:
1. Avoid the dangerous chemicals in regular chemical sunscreens. These contain potentially carcinogenic compounds as well as chemicals that are xenoestrogens, which are known to contribute to "stubborn belly fat".
2. Don't forget the skin protection and vitamin D benefits of getting small doses (10-30 minutes daily) of daily mid-day sun over a good portion of your body (without burning) before slathering on the sunblock or covering up with more clothing.
3. If you must spend a long amount of time out in the summer sun, eat a skin-healthy diet with lots of antioxidants such as various teas, berries, carotenoids, etc. It's a good idea to take a daily Krill Oil supplement in the summer to protect your skin due to the natural form of astaxanthin which has been proven to be one of the most powerful compounds to protect your skin internally.
Also, protect your skin from excess sun and burning by either covering up with clothing or with a safe and natural zinc oxide or titanium oxide based sunscreen too… but ONLY after you've received your small dose (10-30 minutes) of full sun over large portions of your body to increase your vitamin D levels which protect your skin from cancer.
Source White Market
QUESTION: Dear Tom: I have been following your Burn The Fat system with good results. I am losing body fat and maintaining my current lean mass. I've noticed that during my calorie deficit phase I sometimes suffer from light headedness and nausea out of the blue for no particular reason but not during my maintenance phase. I was looking into it and read an article that said that toxins from the food in the "typical American diet" of processed crappy foods get stored inside our fat cells along with excess dietary fat when we overeat, and when we create a calorie deficit and burn the excess fat in our bodies, we release those toxins back into the blood stream. Have you ever heard of this? Any truth? ?
ANSWER: Yes, your fat cells can accumulate numerous types of toxins. For example, almost everyone has traces of pesticides in their bodies. Many people freak out when they hear this, so they become more likely to fall for all kinds of bizarre and usually unproven "detoxification" rituals. It is a shame that our environment has become polluted, but the real questions are whether trace amounts of these substances pose any health risk and whether you actually have toxic levels in your body.
One group of substances that has come to attention recently in the context of fat loss, (in addition to health concerns), is organochlorines, including DDT, PCB's and Dioxins. There is scientific evidence that these chemicals can be stored in fat cells and are released into your system when fat is lost.
The fish and wildlife service web page (fws.gov) has some detailed info on the chemistry and toxicology. One part was of particular interest:
"Organochlorines (OC's) are compounds that contain carbon, chlorine, and hydrogen. Their chlorine-carbon bonds are very strong which means that they do not break down easily. They are highly insoluble in water, but are attracted to fats. Since they resist metabolism and are readily stored in fatty tissue of any animal ingesting them, they accumulate in animals in higher trophic levels. This may occur when birds eat fish that have been exposed to the contaminant. It may also affect humans if they drink milk of a dairy cow that has ingested the chemical because the chemical is excreted in its milk fat. This is called biological magnification."
Some people may recall Rachel Carson and "Silent Spring" back in the 1960′s which was largely responsible for the environmental movement and banning of DDT pesticides. Despite being banned decades ago, these chemicals can remain in our environment and in our bodies for years and organochlorine pollution appears to remain a very real issue today.
As for the release of these substances from your fat cells with weight loss, well, what can you say; those are the consequences of environmental pollution and this is just one more reason to stay lean and eat clean and perhaps also, do your share to take care of our environment, if you are so inclined. But I do believe for the most part, your body is quite well equipped to naturally detoxify most toxins that are ingested in "normal" (small) amounts or would likely be released slowly with normal rates of fat loss. I don't think this is a reason NOT to lose weight, although some researchers say that obese men and women have to "weigh the health advantages of losing the weight with a potentially harmful effect."
Unfortunately, there is another twist: Some data suggests that if these chemicals are released into your system as you lose weight, they could hamper fat loss by decreasing thyroid (T3 conversion) or reducing thermogenesis during weight loss if an obese person had accumulated these chemicals in their fat cells.
Everyone who loses weight experiences some degree of metabolic adaptation as they diet and lose weight, and some obese people seem to have a defect in thermogenesis or their hormones may be out of whack. Scientists began wondering if chemicals released from stored fat into circulation could be a cause of this metabolic slowdown. To the best of my knowledge, these findings have not been confirmed as causative through experimental research, but it's a disturbing prospect because getting lean is hard enough as it is.
Regarding the question about nausea and lightheadedness, I looked at several scientific studies on this subject and even after reading the full papers, I did not see any references to nausea or light headedness being related to Organochlorine release with weight loss. I did, however, see references to suppressed immune system and estrogenic effects in addition to the effects on thyroid. Light headedness could be as simple as low glycogen or blood sugar and caloric deficit.
If you take this research at face value it creates quite a conundrum, doesn't it? My advice is… don't. Don't be alarmist. Take the weight off anyway. Do it slowly and safely, and then keep it off – do NOT cycle up and down in weight. Also, this might be yet one more good reason to question the wisdom of losing weight quickly since the total body burden of OC's is greater in overweight people than in lean people, leaving them more susceptible to adverse effects. As one researcher said, "it could be preferable to moderate body weight loss."
I wouldn't let articles about "the typical American diet poisoning you with toxins" make you worry too much or jump on any bizarre detox rituals that don't have scientific support. You have to be pretty careful in the area of "detoxification" because it is filled with quackery and pseudoscience. Packaged, processed and refined foods are unhealthy. But this issue isn't about chemicals used in food processing, nor is it as simple as saying that eating "junk food" fills you with toxins. This is an environmental pollution issue, where the toxins find their way into our food supply – even "clean foods" – and then into our bodies, where in this case, they remain there for years.
I know it would be great if I could end this article by telling you how to get the OC's out of your system. Unfortunately, the research data I have read does not propose a solution yet. Some people choose organic to avoid pesticides that are still used today, although the benefits of that would be preventative, not retroactive. For now, the best bet is to lose weight at a sensible rate, maintain a healthy weight, and eat clean, unprocessed foods as much as possible.
If you'd like to learn more about how to decrease your body fat level in a safe, sensible, natural way, then visit: <<< Watch This Amazing Video For More Information >>>
Source White Market
High intensity interval training can be done in a variety of different ways. Here's a wickedly-effective type of interval training: it requires no machines or fancy equipment, you can do it outside in the sunshine and fresh air, it develops killer conditioning, carves out legs like a sprinter, and burns calories at an accelerated rate…
In other articles about running/aerobics and high intensity interval training, as well as in my Fat loss books, I've written about how you can integrate both traditional steady state cardio as well as high intensity interval training into your training program for optimal body composition improvement, health and increased fitness – you don't have to choose one form of cardio or the other. In fact, settling into dogmatic views about cardio will only limit you.
Traditional steady state cardio is pretty much self-explanatory and intuitive. But many people are still confused about the best way to do interval training.
An Insanely Effective Way To Do Interval Cardio
I'm not sure if there is a single best way to do intervals because there are so many choices and everyone is different in their goals, interests and personal preferences, so "best" is a relative thing. But let me give you one of my personal favorites that is breathtakingly effective:
Your typical interval workout in the gym might be on a stationary cycle, treadmill or stairclimber with short 30-60 second bursts of high speed and/or resistance, followed by a 60-120 second period of low intensity recovery. That's usually a 1:1 or 1:2 work to recovery interval. You then rinse and repeat for the desired number of intervals, usually between 6 and 12.
Sprinting it takes about 10 seconds or so, walking down about 30 seconds. Those are short intervals with a 1:3 work to recovery interval ratio. That wasn't by design, it just happens to be how long it takes to run up and walk down that particular flight of stairs, but co-incidentally, that fits within common recommendations for short sprint-style intervals.
I make sure I'm warmed up first, I usually start with a couple flights up at a slow jog then a run, before sprinting, usually 10-12 rounds.
Even if you jog/run instead of sprint, (or pause briefly at the bottom of the stairs), when you do the math, you can figure that this usually doesn't take more than 10-12 minutes.
Why do I like stadium step sprinting?
1. Stair sprinting is a time saver. Like other forms of interval training, it's entirely possible to get as much if not more cardiovascular conditioning in 10-15 minutes than you'd get from a much longer session of slower cardio (depending on the intensity and effort levels).
2. Stair sprinting is engaging. Many people get bored doing long slow to medium intensity cardio sessions. This is a great way to break up the monotony of traditional cardio workouts. Even though it's tough, it's actually kind of fun.
3. Stair sprinting is incredible for leg development. As a bodybuilder, I like to look at all types of training not only in terms of conditioning, fat loss and health, but also whether they will add or detract from the physique. I find that brief but intense stair workouts are amazing for leg development – quads, hamstrings, glutes and even your calves. In fact, I started training on the stairs more than 20 years ago, and I always considered it as much if not more of a leg workout than anything else.
4. Stair sprinting can be done outside. If you have access to stadium steps, as opposed to just a stairwell, you can enjoy the sun and fresh air.
How to integrate stair running into your training program
If you're an overachiever type, you might be tempted to do these sprint workouts in addition to your current strength training and cardio workload.
However, keep in mind that intensity and duration are inversely proportional. When you do high intensity cardio or all out sprints, you are condensing more work into less time. That means the best part is, you can do a brief but intense stair workout instead of one of your long cardio sessions rather than in addition to them.
Recommendation: Start with one session per week, then progress to two if you choose. You can do traditional cardio the other days of the week if you want or need additional calorie-burning. Lower intensity cardio in between weight training and interval workouts can also serve as active recovery.
Not everyone has access to a full flight of stadium steps, as you might find at a local University. Running flights of stairs in a high rise is another effective and no-cost way to train on stairs. Although you can't truly sprint with twists and turns on each floor, you can jog/run.
No stairs? Hills will get the job done too and they may provide you with more flexibility in the length/duration of your intervals. I've found some big hills at just the right grade of incline that I can do 30-45 second runs up, with about 90-120 seconds walk down. Grassy hills are nice, when available, as they spare you some of the impact from running on the concrete.
Sprinting up stairs is not for everyone. If you have a history of health problems or orthopedic issues, check with your doctor before doing any kind of high intensity training and of course, don't train through the pain of injury. If you are significantly overweight, it may be a challenge just to walk up stairs, let alone run up, not to mention it might create undue stress on your joints. But as you get lighter and fitter, it's a challenge you might slowly work toward.
Be sure to build up gradually and adjust the workout based on your current health and fitness level. You could start with as few as 4-6 rounds and build up from there. You can also start with jogging up the stairs, then progress to running, then move to sprints. Be sure you are fully prepared and warmed up before attempting all out sprints as sprinting when unprepared is a notorious source of hamstring pulls.
Some coaches believe that running uphill is safer than sprinting flat surfaces. Writing for Staley Training.com, Coach Steven Morris says, "Another great reason to hill sprint: even an athlete with horrendous running form will be safe running hills. This is simply because the hill does NOT allow the athlete to over-stride nor does it allow them to reach top speed, both major factors in hamstring injuries."
Stair sprinting is a perfect complement to the cardio portion in my Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle program. If you're healthy and already fit, try this advanced interval workout and I think you'll be pleasantly surprised with the results!
Source White Market
After you read this short article, you will have leaned some quick tips to start gaining healthy weight.
Here's 6 simple ways on how to gain weight without getting fat:
Tip 1: Eating Enough Quality Calories
Have you ever asked somebody who's trying to gain weight what they eat?
I did. And the response I received was shocking.
"I just eat."
That's what he said. I just eat.
You MUST know how many calories a day you need for your weight gain goal.
This person desperately wanted to gain weight and every time I saw him the gym he had some excuse as to why it wasn't going his way. And it was usually related to his metabolism.
Let me tell you…
If you want to gain quality weight, you have to eat high quality dense foods and ENOUGH of them. Furthermore… if you want to gain weight without getting fat, then you bulk with the same principles as if you were on a cutting diet. Choose higher-calorie foods when given a choice.
In my years of experience, when I bulked up and gained weight and fat, the biggest mistake I made was not tracking what I ate. I always tracked my diet when I was on a calorie restricted phase (that was a given) but when I wanted to gain weight I just ate everything I could.
Have you ever felt that way?
In order to gain weight, you need to eat more than your usual maintenance calorie intake but not so much as to just store the excess calories and get fat. And you need to eat consistently.
That should have been your "ah -ha" moment.
Gaining weight isn't your cue to eat everything under the sun. In order to gain weight, lean mass and not get fat, you need to eat just over what you body needs to maintain. In this manner, you'll provide your body with all the calories it needs to build muscle but you won't give it so much as it stores the excess as fat.
[ Remember that anything in excess, even protein, can be stored as fat. ]
The key is to gain healthy weight and minimize the fat gains.
Tip 2: Grocery Shopping 101
If you are looking to gain weight, then don't have bare cupboards. Go to your kitchen right now after reading this section and take a look at what you've got in stock.
Make sure your kitchen is fully stocked with the foods you need to eat. Dense foods work wonders for putting on the weight.
Examples are whole-grain breads, vegetables such as avocados and potatoes, kidney beans, lean red meat, poultry and fish.
Bare cupboards = no weight gain!
Bodybuilding doesn't have to break the bank. Many times you can get bulk items for much cheaper than you think. Packages of tuna, turkey, chicken legs, pasta all are great bulking items that don't cost a ton of money.
Perishable items like fruits and sugary laden items and condiments are usually things that cost the most.
Tip 3: Meal Planning for Dummies
Part of performance nutrition is eating 5-6 times a day. Every 2-3 hours you should be consuming a meal consisting of a lean protein, fibrous/starchy carb and potentially a healthy fat.
If you really want to gain weight, you need to eat 5-6 times a day! And it needs to be consistent. This means no skipping meals.
Eating 3 times a day full of bacon and eggs might have worked for some of the past legends but it probably won't do you any good.
Keeping your metabolism high and your system flushed with nitrogen (protein) will ensure you keep all the muscle you are working to build and that you are consuming slight excess calories for weight gain.
If you eat a big dinner but skip snacks and have light breakfasts, that is part of the problem. Healthy weight gain only comes from people who are consistent in their eating and don't skip meals.
Failure to plan your meals ultimately means you won't be eating enough to gain weight.
Tip 4: Nutrient Variety is Key
It happens to the best of us… We get used to eating certain foods and we don't budge. For a bulking diet, this can be a killer as it drastically limits the number of calories you can eat. Plus, you will limit the nutrients and vitamins you will be able to intake. Both are essential to maximum healthy weight gain.
Did anybody ever tell you that nutrients are essential for growth?
Tip 5: Essential Meal Timing
While it might be socially acceptable to eat just 3 times a day, that is not acceptable for those who are serious about putting on lean muscle mass without putting on fat.
You've heard all the benefits of performance nutrition and eating 5-6 times a day but re-read this…
Quality muscle gain without putting on fat requires a high metabolism AND an excess number of calories.
In order to do just that, you need to eat frequently.
That means 5-6 times a day (or more).
Tip 6: Eat, Eat and Eat [ did I mention eat ]
Don't feel hungry?
Eat. Now in most cases, that is against the current movement but in reality, if you want to put on quality mass you have to eat regardless of your hunger levels. Eating based on your mood is not the path to healthy weight gain.
Countless people tell me they cannot eat like a 200 lb bodybuilder.
That's because they are not a 200 lb bodybuilder.
Once they eat more, gain muscle mass, they will be and it will seem like nothing to eat like a 200 lb bodybuilder.
This doesn't mean stuffing yourself, gorging on food or getting sick. It means eating more and more gradually over time in order to prime your body for more frequent meal times. Slowly start adding more food to your portions until you've nailed your perfect weight gain calorie needs.
As you eat more and small but frequent meals, you won't feel stuff and your body will become more efficient at digesting and breaking down foods.
All this means to you is…
A higher metabolic rate and more calories!
The two essential keys to putting on weight without the fat.
:: Additional Tips ::
* Drink plenty of water. With your additional meals and workouts, you'll want to ensure you are properly hydrated.
* Engage in a weight training program. Building muscle is a priority during your bulking phase. Since you will have plenty of energy from your carb sources, you should be fueled and primed to get some of the best and most intense workouts of your life. Now is an opportune time to build muscle.
* Limit your cardio workouts. Cardio workouts are a tool. Use it sparingly depending on your metabolism. If you feel like you aren't putting on weight, reduce the amount of cardio you are doing. If you feel like you are putting on a bit too much fat, increase the cardio.
* Take weekly weight and body fat measurements. By taking a weekly measurement, you can see if the weight you are putting on is fat or muscle.
Source White Market
I'm sure you know that two of the MOST important hormones for both burning body fat and also building lean muscle are growth hormone (GH) and testosterone (T)… and there are certain "tricks" that you can use during exercise to maximize production in your body.
And keep in mind that GH is also called the "youth hormone", so there are benefits besides just fat loss and lean muscle development.
Now let me clarify, this topic might seem to be more relevant to men (especially when it comes to Testosterone), but it's also important to the ladies for getting maximum results from training…
For the ladies reading this…don't worry about exercise-induced small increases in these hormones…the amount of T in the female body is so small compared to men that minor increases won't lead to any "masculinization" (I just made that word up)… instead it just helps get a leaner and more shapely body.
Ok, this topic could be long-winded, but I'm going to give just a couple really quick tips today for maximizing Growth Hormone and Testosterone response from exercise…
From a lot of the research I've done, there seems to be a couple distinct types of training that can either help increase Testosterone or help increase Growth Hormone, and they are totally different training methods.
In order to reduce your body fat as much as possible, as well as build lean muscle the easiest, you need to try to maximize BOTH!
First, for exercise-induced Testosterone increases…
From a lot of the various research I've read, one of the best methods to increase T is to do at least some portion of your training in very low rep ranges and very heavy weight.
This means training in the 2-5 rep range, with such heavy weights that you can't physically do more reps than that range. Also, this only works with the biggest multi-joint exercises such as barbell squats, deadlifts, bench press and weighted pullups. No silly side lateral raises or tricep extensions when you're trying to get a Testosterone response!
An example of this type of structure would be 5 sets of 3 reps on the barbell deadlift, squat, or bench. Alternating sets of deadlifts and bench press (or squats alternated with weighted pullups) separated by at least 2 minutes of rest between sets works well to accomplish this super heavy lifting style and subsequent T increase.
It's basically the aspect of challenging your body with super heavy weights and low rep ranges, with 2-3 minutes rest between sets that helps to maximize T production.
From what I've observed at most gyms, almost NOBODY trains in this rep range (most people seem to always train in the 8-12 or higher rep ranges), so there are a TON of people that could see Testosterone improvements by incorporating this into their training at least once or twice a week.
Keep in mind that this super heavy style of training is ONLY for advanced trainees that have years of training experience with weights.
Now, let's talk about exercise induced Growth Hormone increases…
From the research I've read on this hormone, it appears that more explosive styles of training, and also higher rep training with shorter rest periods helps to increase GH response.
Wind sprints are one of the top exercises for inducing a GH increase. I like to do these as 60 to 100 yard all-out sprints across a local soccer field or football field. Generally, I'll do about 8-12 total sprints with about 60 seconds rest time in between each one for a good 20 minute workout. If you haven't done sprints in a long time or are out of shape, it's a good idea to not go to "all-out" intensity for the first couple weeks or you'll risk injury. Also, just doing 3-4 sprints for the first couple of sprint workouts is a good idea to reduce injury risk.
Also, hill sprints are an exceptional exercise for GH response. I like to sprint as fast and as hard as possible up a 30 yard hill and then walk down… and then keep repeating until I've done at least 10-20 hill sprints. Sometimes I'll mix in pushups in between hill sprints to maximize the full body effect.
As for weight training, from the research I've read, GH increase comes best from higher rep ranges with short rest periods between sets. This means that supersets in the 8-15 rep range per exercise with no rest between might work well. The weight still needs to be heavy enough to challenge your muscles close to failure at those rep ranges.
Another type of training that seems to increase GH is more "explosive" types of exercises such as squat jumps, lunge jumps, or something like barbell power cleans or barbell clean and press. Any exercise that works large muscle groups explosively or almost the entire body at once in an explosive fashion seems to stimulate GH (hence why I chose barbell clean and press as one of the best).
I also think double kettlebell snatches are one of the most intense exercises ever invented and probably have a huge effect on growth hormone due to their explosive and intense nature.
So with all of this said, it's important to keep in mind that for the best results with maximizing both T and GH, you want to incorporate BOTH of these styles of training.
One way to do this is to have 1 or 2 workouts per week that are designated low-rep "strength" days where you work those big multi joint lifts in low rep ranges. And then on another 1-2 days per week you work on the explosive exercises, higher rep ranges and short rest periods, and/or the wind sprints or hill sprints.
And lastly, always remember to consciously think in your mind about how the exercises that you're doing are actually increasing your fat burning and muscle building hormones, making you feel younger, etc, etc… I've talked in several other articles about actual PROOF of how using the power of conscious thought in your mind can help bring about those changes in your body (aka placebo effect).
I hope you enjoyed this article… I really think if you incorporate these tips into your workout schedule, you can drastically improve your hormonal response to exercise and therefore see faster fat burning and muscle building effects!
Source White Market
Did you know that stroke and coronary heart disease still remain to be on the list of the top three main causes of death in the USA? It's time to take your health seriously so you don't fall victim to these!
What is High Blood Pressure and how does this come into play?
According to the National Institute for Health, blood pressure levels of 140/90 mmHg or more can be classified as hypertension.
The worst part about having high blood pressure is that the condition can sometimes be present without any symptoms and before we know it, the damage is already extensive. Serious problems that have been associated with high blood pressure include kidney failure, heart attack, heart failure and stroke.
What are the Risk Factors Associated with High Blood Pressure?
Blood pressure can be influenced by a lot of factors – age, race, family history, tobacco use, sedentary lifestyle, diet, binge drinking, and stress levels. Chronic conditions such as sleep apnea, diabetes and high cholesterol levels can also precipitate the development of hypertension.
What can You Do to Lower Blood Pressure?
You don't need potentially dangerous drugs to control and reduce your blood pressure. Controlling blood pressure levels could be as simple as doing lifestyle modifications and eating healthier.
If you are a smoker, quit. If you drink heavily, try to practice self-control. At work, take the stairs instead of the elevator. And if you have been obsessed with sweet, sugary foods as well as processed fast-food meals, then modify your eating habits as well. Learn to eat the right kinds of food before it's too late.
Below are 5 of my top picks for powerful foods that could help you lower your blood pressure levels:
The use of artichokes has been implicated in the lowering of cholesterol levels in the blood. Since hypercholesterolemia is one of the risk factors for high blood pressure, this information is actually good news. Three clinical trials conducted separately by Dr. Barbara Wider supports this fact. In Cochrane Database of Systemic Reviews' October 2009 issue, where the result of the study was published, it was shown that patients who were diagnosed with hypercholesterolemia and given Artichoke leaf extract exhibited a decrease in their blood cholesterol levels.
Artichokes taste amazing steamed (generally steam for about 1 hour) and then dip each piece into a mixture of olive oil, grass-fed butter, and garlic. Delicious!
A study published in The New England Journal of Medicine says that incorporating bananas in your day-to-day meals can actually cut stroke-related deaths by as much as 40 percent. A 1997 study at Johns Hopkins University recommended eating at least five bananas daily to achieve the desired effect, and that is to lower elevated blood pressure levels. However, a study conducted by Indian researchers at the Kasturba medical college revealed that people who eat two bananas a day, for one whole week, can lower their blood pressure levels by 10 percent.
Bananas are rich in potassium, which is responsible for the proper functioning of the heart. It works with sodium to maintain balance of the body's fluids, which is an important factor in the regulation of blood pressure.
A research study conducted by scientists from Barts and The London School Medicine revealed that simply drinking one 500 ml glass of beetroot juice each day can produce astounding health benefits, especially to the heart.
Beetroot juice has been found to lower high blood pressure levels. Professors Amrita Ahluwalia and Ben Benjamin, from the William Harvey Research Institute and Peninsula Medical Center, respectively, led the research efforts, which revealed that the consumption of dietary nitrate that is found in beetroot has BP-lowering effects in as fast as 1 hour after ingestion, with the effect lasting for up to 24 hours. The result of the study was published in the March 2008 issue of Hypertension.
You can try beetroot juice, or also try baked beets sliced on salads or as a side dish to dinner.
A study conducted by researchers from Germany's University Hospital of Cologne revealed that cocoa can significantly lower high blood pressure levels. Study results were published in the Archives of Internal Medicine. The beneficial heart effects of cocoa are attributed to its flavonoid content, specifically procyanids.
Because cocoa is most commonly found in chocolate, people falsely assume that eating a lot of chocolate could be good for the health. Keep in mind that cocoa in chocolates have undergone a lot of processing, and it has been mixed with loads of sugar, so this is not totally healthy. The best way to take advantage of the health benefits offered by cocoa is to choose raw cacao – it is good for the heart, the brain and the liver. Raw cacao nibs go great in smoothies! Also use organic cocoa powder in smoothies or homemade hot cocoa sweetened with stevia instead of sugar.
Researchers from South Australia's University of Adelaide have conducted studies, which provide solid proof that the consumption of garlic can indeed help lower elevated blood pressure levels. Garlic supplements in powder form were given and results revealed that it produced a reduction in systolic blood pressure. Garlic has been known all over the world as a very important herb, especially with its heart-protecting capabilities. It helps lower blood cholesterol levels and prevents blood from forming clots (which could lead to heart attack and stroke).
Furthermore, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal has published the results of a laboratory test showing how garlic juice can lead to a decrease in blood pressure levels. Eating the equivalent of 2 cloves of garlic each day can significantly contribute to the health of the heart.
Source White Market
In today's world, we're seeing the internet, magazines, books, and tv shows/commercials flooded with tons of varied fitness and health advice. So how do you know who to actually trust and who may be giving you fitness misinformation and leading you down the wrong path?
Well, first of all, there ARE some sleezebags out there that all they want to do is sell you some crappy gimmick and make off with their quick buck.
In fact, more and more marketers with no fitness background or experience are getting involved in selling fitness and health products these days. Unfortunately, many of these pure marketers don't know the first thing about fitness and are just putting out total junk just to make sales (hmm, can anybody say hoodia or the parasite scare-tactic scam artists).
On the other hand, the good thing is that most fitness and health professionals are well intentioned and do actually want to help you legitimately. Although being well-intentioned, many times these professionals have been misinformed over the years and led to believe certain health and fitness myths (that they think are factual) that are not always accurate.
I think the subject heading with the term "clueless" is a little harsh and I want to clearly state that even if a fitness professional or trainer is misinformed on a couple of topics here or there, it's still likely that 90% or more of their information is actually very helpful.
As a matter of fact, you'll almost never find 2 fitness professionals or trainers that completely agree with one another. However, usually most fitness pros will agree on about 80 or 90% of topics. There are probably even a couple topics that I may be misinformed about (after all, nobody is perfect), but I'll always do my best to provide you with the most up-to-date and legitimate information I can find.
With that said, whenever I'm reading fitness publications, there are 4 key things I look for to see if the author or fitness "expert" really understands true nutrition and training principles. This can help you in your readings and dealings with trainers to decipher good info from bad info.
Here are 4 of the main aspects I look for to determine is a fitness pro or trainer is "in the know" or not:
1. If the resistance training portions of their workout routines are mostly comprised of machines and single-joint exercises such as leg extensions, leg curls, bicep curls, tricep kickbacks, pec decks, leg press machines, shoulder raises, etc… then they probably have some misconceptions about training and you should beware.
I'll admit that there's a time and a place for just about any type of exercise (including the occasional use of machines and single joint exercises), but if these are what makes up the majority of their routines, then you should reconsider taking advice from them.
The fitness pros and trainers "in the know" will give you routines that are comprised of a balanced approach using free weight multi-joint exercises (and bodyweight exercises) for the majority of the exercises with only very limited machine or single-joint exercise use.
Here's another article I did on this topic:
Why Body Part Isolation Workouts Get Weak Training Results
2. The 2nd thing I look for in a knowledgeable or mislead fitness trainer is whether they think that cardio is the "only way" to lose body fat. For anybody that understands human physiology, the assertion that cardio is the only way to lose body fat is ludicrous.
After all, you can lose body fat without any exercise at all for that matter if you have a caloric deficit (although I don't recommend that route, because a non-exerciser is still flabby and unhealthy even with low body fat %).
In addition, you can lose plenty of body fat with resistance-only training routines without any cardio at all… it simply depends on the intensity of your workouts as a whole (whether they contain cardio, resistance training only, or a mixture of both), your resting metabolic rate, and the overall balance of your calorie intake vs calorie expenditure over time.
Here's another article I wrote about the myths on cardio training and better alternate workouts
3. The 3rd thing I look for in a knowledgeable or mislead fitness trainer or health professional is whether they falsely believe that saturated fat and dietary cholesterol are bad for us.
I've beaten this issue into the ground, but I'll say it again… If there's one fact you must understand about nutrition, it's that saturated fat and dietary cholesterol are essential parts of the natural human diet (and have been for thousands of years) and are not unhealthy for us depending on the source of the food (organic, etc).
The most unhealthy foods in our food supply are actually processed foods such as processed refined vegetable oils, hydrogenated oils (trans fats), deep fried foods, refined grains, refined sugars, and other boxed packaged "mutilated" foods.
Here's an article that explains the myth about saturated fat more clearly for you:
and if you're a scientific type that wants to understand the biochemistry of why saturated fat is not bad for you, this is a must read article by a PhD in Nutritional Biochemistry
4. The 4th thing I look for in a knowledgeable or mislead fitness pro or health "expert" is whether they falsely think that artificial sweeteners are healthy. I see so many fitness pros promoting the use of artificial sweeteners just so that they can save on sugar intake. Well, the truth is that even though refined sugar is horrible for us, artificial sweeteners are "franken-foods" that are even worse for us!
Here's an article that explains more details about the dangers of artificial sweeteners and other "diet" foods / drinks:
One thing I'd like to ask you is that if you found these articles beneficial, please email this link on to your friends, family, and co-workers that you think can benefit from these topics.
Also, if you think these articles can help your friends, feel free to copy any of these article links onto your myspace, facebook, blog pages (or any other networks) that you keep to help your friends be healthier and more fit as well.
Source White Market