Saturday, January 2, 2010

Exercise for a Healthy Heart

nullnullDo you exercise every day? If you want to live a long, healthy life, maybe you should.

A recent study by Timothy Wessel, a physician at the University of Florida, indicates one of the strongest risk factors for developing heart disease is inactivity – even more so than being overweight. During the four-year study of 906 women, Dr. Wessel documented those who were moderately active were less likely to develop heart disease than sedentary women, no matter how much they weighed. The study concluded: “These results suggest that fitness may be more important than overweight or obesity for cardiovascular risk in women.”

In January, the updated U.S. Dietary Guidelines strongly urged that everyone should take part in “at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity” on most days, above whatever activities they do at home or work. To loose weight or to avoid gaining weight as we age, 60 minutes of daily moderate to vigorous exercise is recommended. And those who have already lost weight and are attempting to keep weight off need 60 to 90 minutes of daily exercise.

A study of 9,611 adults by the University of Michigan Health System, found that people in their 50s and 60s who participated in daily exercise were 35 percent less likely to die within the next eight years than their inactive couch potato counter parts.

Convinced that it’s time to add exercise to your day?

The Basics - Making Exercise a Life Priority:
- If you’re not use to exercising, check with your doctor before beginning any strenuous fitness routine.

- Start slow. If 30 minutes of exercise is too much, start with 15 minutes and add a few minutes each day.

- If you don’t have time for 60 minutes of exercise, break it up into two 30-minute sessions throughout the day.

- Schedule a specific time to exercise everyday – then keep to your schedule!

- Take part in more intense activities that can improve your heart health, such as: running, dancing, swimming, cycling, and climbing stairs.

- Find exercise that you enjoy. You will be more likely to continue and improve your daily performance if you look forward to a favorite activity.

- Wear proper clothing and footwear. This has two functions. Clothing and shoes that are suited to your activity will enhance performance and offer the right kind of support for your body and feet. They will also place you in a better frame of mind for exercise. When you wear your favorite running outfit and slide into your special running shoes, your mind says “it’s time to get out the door and put my feet in motion!”

- Add everyday activities to increase your overall fitness level, such as gardening, housework, walking to the store, take the stairs instead of the elevator, and raking leaves.

- Always drink lots of water.

- If you feel discomfort or pain after an activity, use ice therapy immediately to reduce swelling and numb pain. Always have a cold pack in your freezer, ready and waiting. Most aches and pains attributed to exercise respond well to icing and will melt away within 24 hours after applying ice for several 20-minute sessions. Using cold therapy reduces down time, getting you back on schedule fast. (If the pain does not lessen within 48 hours after using ice therapy, is intense or becomes worse, see your doctor.)

Exercise every day…take care of your heart…live long!

Disclaimer: This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical treatment or consultation. Always consult with your physician in the event of a serious injury.

Diet and Fitness, Winning Tactics For Weight Loss

nullnullnullTell me, does this describe you? 'I tried a zillion diets in
fits and starts and was never successful.' Just going on a diet
will not give you a complete healthy persona. I finally paid
attention to what everybody was saying, but I was too lazy to

I added exercise and fitness to the equation. We also need to
stay fit as well as diet to lose weight. Our true wealth is our
health. Isn't it worth your time bring it into peak condition
and maintain it? Diet fitness is all about an accurate mix of
diet and an appropriate fitness program.

This basically includes three levels of consideration:

1. Balance-A balanced diet must contain carbohydrate, protein,
fat, vitamin, mineral salts and fiber in well proportionate
quantity. Carbohydrates are the source of energy so these play
an important role in balanced diet. Intentional inclusion of all
foods from fruits to vegetables and meats to grains.

2. Moderation- portion control, small quantity at regular
intervals. I had to laugh when I heard the results of a 5-year
study costing millions of dollars the government ran to find out
why the population of the US is getting heavier. The
results…they determined we eat larger quantities! 'Super Size

3. Variation - wide variety in foods,means higher chances of
complete nutrition. And variety in your workout routine means a
greter chance of sustaining it.

It is a well-known fact that poor diet leads to diseases, like
obesity, even cancer and heart disease. The link between diet
and physical fitness has well been established and recognized as
a science in itself. It's the basis of dynamic and creative
intellectual activity. How do you balance diet and fitness?
What changes in your diet and fitness regimes will prove to be
the most beneficial ones?

These questions may have been on your mind for a long time but
you didn't know where to start. I let the paralysis of analysis
prevent me from getting started for a long time. I wanted the
'perfect' fitness plan. My advice? Just get started anywhere,
but get started. There are the solutions at your doorstep. First
and foremost, you need to ensure that the diet you are on,
supplies you enough strength and energy to carry out the fitness
training which means:

The basic fitness diet should:

1. Have a wide variety of foods-- wholegrain breads and cereals
for vitamins and minerals, leafy green vegetables for iron
fueling, fruit for adequate fiber, lean meat and Fish (lowers
cholesterol and helps prevent cancer) and low fat dairy

2. Enable you to have optimal weight and energy to carry out
daily activities with ease.

3. Enhance quick and complete recovery during exercise.

4. Supply enough fluids to have maximum hydration. 5. Provide
both short and long term benefits and ease of maintenance.

When the above criterion is satisfied, you can confirm that you
are on a diet that is not starving you or running you the risk
of malnutrition and weakness. Fitness programs can include not
only basic gymnasium but modern techniques like dancing,
aerobics and yoga for variety and fun. If it is enjoyable it
will be easier to maintain.

Make no mistake about it, fitness regimes help you speed up the
process of loosing weight along with the diet. That is the key,
the magic diet accelerator. So eat healthy, exercise and be wise!

Are You Fit?

Fitness refers to ability of the body to function with vigor and alertness. Nutrition refers to the nurturing of our body, in our ability to keep it healthy and functioning as it is supposed to do. Our ability to provide the body with all the necessary food, vitamins, and minerals so that we continue to thrive in our daily life processes. But do we know if we are really fit? How do we tell?
First, you might want to look at your exercise habits, if there are any. If there aren’t any exercise routines to examine, no fitness. Everyone, no matter what their age, benefits from exercise. It keeps our bodies conditioned, our mental sharpness working at top speed, and thanks to the physical aspect, we get a boost to our cardio health, extra calorie burn, and more oxygen to those cells!
Do you take in more calories than your body needs? Are you supplementing your vitamins and minerals to make sure you are getting your recommended daily allowances? If you’re not making the most basic of efforts to take care of your nutritional needs, you aren’t a fit individual. You may not look sick, you may not have any noticeable symptoms of ill-health, but you’re not the fit and toned individual you could be.
What about the stress levels in your life? Do work in an environment with high levels of stress? Is your personal life a source of comfort or does it add to your stress levels? Do you engage in some form of stress-relieving activity? Stress is the number on contributor to heart attacks and strokes, since they manage to speed up the affect of the real culprits. Stress is basically an out of control situation for most adults today. We manage to schedule every moment of our free time, and leave ourselves with no time for quiet reflection, or time to deal with life’s unexpected emergencies.
Fitness requires us to examine more than just our exercise routine. The mere definition of fitness refers to the body’s ability to meet physical stresses. That includes coping with our day to day life, getting from the beginning of the day to the end, without being worn completely out. In order to be truly fit, we find ways to rid ourselves of built up stress, the kind that begins to affect our muscles, muscle tone, and composition. Massages are the best cure for ridding our bodies of the stress buildup that can occur, even with exercise regimens and detract from our overall fitness.
Exercises that demand total body involvement are the best for maintaining and improving your level of fitness most effectively. Running, swimming, jogging, dancing, cycling, and very brisk walking are some of the more popular total body involvement exercises.
There are so many occasions to stop and question our efforts at maintaining optimal health, that we usually don’t even take the time to begin the examination. But it is beneficial to our overall health, the quality and quantity of our life, to make every effort to be fit, healthy, individuals. Read more health and fitness articles at