Should You Stop Exercising?

This isn’t the most obvious thing in the world. There are those who say that you shouldn’t exercise. The most atimate person I ever saw telling a child this was a morbidly obese woman who was telling a child that apparently people who run marathons are all anorexic and unhealthy. Yes, she said that. Insecure anyone? I have been never been so sorely tempted to slap someone silly.

There are studies that suggest (not anorexia) that there are some potential health issues with exercise. Of course, there is plenty of research that shows how healthy exercise is, but some studies for example suggest that women who are triathletes are at a higher risk of pelvic floor disorders like urinary incontinence. Personally, I can be fit without being a triathlete…..and I would take that over some other health issues of not enough exercise or healthy living.

A new study shows that there may also be a higher prevalence of osteoarthritis and joint breakdown in the lower limbs among formerly elite athletes. With so much impact on joints, this isn’t wholly surprising, but you would think that the muscle built around the joints would balance it out to some degree. As you may notice though, all of the research that indicates that exercise may be bad is generally focused on some pretty extreme exercise practices. Dr. James O’keefe wrote Run for your life! At a comfortable pace, and not too far. He says, the fitness patterns for conferring longevity and robust lifelong cardiovascular health are distinctly different from the patterns that develop peak performance and marathon/superhuman endurance. Extreme endurance training and racing can take a toll on your long-term cardiovascular health. For the daily workout, it may be best to have more fun and endure less suffering in order to attain ideal heart health.

Frankly, exercise is not a bad thing. In fact, it’s a great thing if done right. You don’t have to be an endurance athlete, and according to the research, you shouldn’t be. Just 30 minutes a day is fine for most of us, and if you find that you are always tired, sore or have frequent injuries, or you are sacrificing other parts of your life for this, you may be going too far.

In addition, I would combine the exercise routine you choose with a healthy diet. Don’t take a good run as an excuse to sugar it up at your local bakery or coffee shop. There is a definite tendency for many to do this, but it ends up undoing a lot of the good and doing some potentially serious damage. So focus on balance. When you do this, you can get the most out of your exercise, and there’s no reason to really worry about these issues that you hear about with extreme exercise.

Simple Ways To Live Longer

I’m not just talking about living longer or living to 100. I’m talking about living healthier and happier. I’m talking about being an active participant in your own life for a longer period of time. You can live as if you were younger, taking advantage of your golden years. Yes, you can do what you want and hope for the best or say you don’t want to live longer. But regardless of what age you live to, do you want to spend your last years not remembering, having heart problems, and otherwise not being healthy? I don’t.

If you want to live longer AND healthier, there are a lot of things that have been recommended. Here are just a few things that you can try:

  1. Run Every Day For Just 5 Minutes: Yes, just 5 minutes. A study of 55,137 adults found that runners had an extra 3 years on their lives as compared to non-runners. These benefits showed up regardless of how long, far, or fast (even frequently) runners ran. Those running less than an hour per week had the same increase in life as those who ran more than 3 hours a week. That’s good news for those who say they don’t have time.
  2. Drink A Daily Coffee: In an April 2014 review in the British Journal of Nutrition, they covered 20 studies of 974,000 people. According to studies, those who drank coffee, especially if it was 3 or more cups a day, had a lower risk of death in general. Yes, there are side effects such as headaches, racing heartbeats, anxiety, insomnia, etc. It depends partly on how tolerant your system is. But overall, the effects seem to be healthy.
  3. Take Responsibility: According to studies in the 1970’s, you can always take responsibility for your life, and it may be the very thing that saves you. If you don’t take responsibility, you always feel like it’s someone else’s fault, fate’s fault. Never being in control can be extremely stressful. A study in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology studied nursing home residents who took responsibility by say caring for a plant. They lived longer than those relying on staff for all decisions.
  4. Take Time To Volunteer: 27% of Americans are estimated to volunteer, and apparently, it gives back. In multiple studies, those who volunteered had a 20% drop in mortality. They lived longer, had lower levels of depression, and they benefited from a higher level of life satisfaction.
  5. Great Sex: Yes, there are other reasons to have sex than reproduction, and while you’re at it, you may as well have fun. According to a Duke University study over 25 years, one of the most significant factors in longevity for women was their enjoyment of sex. Great sex led to high health satisfaction and healthy physical functioning, and it added an average of 23 years onto women’s lives.
  6. Be Willing To Be Sad or See the Bad: It’s perfectly okay to be sad sometimes, and instead of blaming yourself and guilting yourself, try accepting it. It’s okay to be a bit pessimistic from time to time, and letting out that stress can keep it from building up. Just let it out.

Foods That Make You Bloat

You can eat right, get healthy, and yet a kind of inflammation, you can still suffer bloating, which can make you look, or sometimes just feel fatter, especially during bikini season. There are foods that can cause bloating and gas, such as bubbly soda, that you may want to avoid. But if you really want to avoid that effect and take advantage of your best bikini body, you may want to avoid these foods:

  1. Carbonated Drinks: Carbonated drinks are an obvious one. The carbonation bubbles, and for some with sensitive digestive systems, it can upset your stomach. Even for those who do not have more sensitive digestive systems though, you will find that the air may cause gas buildup, leading to a bloated look and feel. This can lead to belching and farting as well, but the effects should only list a few hours.
  2. Sugar Free Gum, Candies, and Desserts: You will find that the sugar based alcohols in these can actually be bloating. Your body has a hard time digesting them, if they can digest at all, and this can lead to more gas and bloating. Xylitol is a perfect example of this, and you will find that if you limit your sugar-free desserts and candy to just one per day, you will stave off a lot of unnecessary bloating.
  3. Broccoli and Cabbage: Yes, vegetables are great, but especially when not cooked, these can be extremely gassy veggies. They are notorious for causing gas, and that does come with bloating. They have plenty of fiber, but even when your body gets used to the higher doses of fiber, broccoli especially is still gassy. You can reduce the effect by cooking broccoli. You can also try a supplement like Bean-o.
  4. Dairy: So you may be lactose intolerant, which could actually lead to more obvious symptoms such as gas, bloating, diarrhea, and other unpleasant problems. Even if you aren’t necessarily lactose intolerant though, you may find that dairy can be a harder food for your body to properly digest. There are some who suggest that dairy is simply foreign to our systems, and a growing number of people in some areas just don’t have the enzymes to properly digest it.

A High Protein Diet Can Lower Your Blood Pressure

The Paleo has garnered a lot of attention, both good and bad. Everybody is eager to talk about it, and yet, many of us don’t really know how it works. We have heard that it could put you at a higher risk of heart disease. We’ve heard that it can help you to lose more weight and gain more muscle, making you that much healthier. Everybody and their dog has something to say. However, as of late, the evidence has been turning in a positive direction according to Boston University and a study published in the American Journal of Hypertension.

The research study gathered 1,361 and tracked their blood pressure for about 11.3 years on average. They found that people eating the most protein obviously tend to lose weight based on what we have seen time and time again. However, they also have a lower risk of high blood pressure. They had a significant 40% drop in fact of the risk of developing hypertension over the course of the study as compared to those who ate the least protein during that time. It was not just because of the exercise that many low carb dieters also engage in. Researchers controlled for exercise trends in these studies.

Study author Justin Buendia says, It may be that people who eat more protein have healthier diets in general. With higher protein consumption, you may eat less of other high-calorie foods. You may feel full sooner, and that would lead to lower weight, which would lead to beneficial metabolic outcomes, such as lower blood pressure.

Researchers do not suggest eliminating grains from your diet or going low carb necessarily. You need to make sure that you still have plenty of fiber in your diet. I know, there’s no magic bullet or simple plan to lose weight and be healthier, which is why low carb diets are often more complicated than some would like to think.

How Ramen Noodles Could Shorten Your Life

Okay, so I love my ramens. I love combining them with veggies, eggs, and all sorts of other goodies. I know they’re fatty and not the healthiest food, but do I really care? Not much at this point. Instant ramen has become a staple of the college diet. So it can’t be that bad. After all, how many millions of people do this in college? The truth is that it could have some serious risks for cardiometabolic syndrome, which is a risk factor for severe cardiovascular problems for disease and stroke, and this is especially true in women.

Hyun Joon Shin MD released a statement saying, This research is significant since many people are consuming instant noodles without knowing possible health risks. Shin is currently a clinical cardiology fellow at Baylor University Medical Center, and he is also a nutrition epidemiology doctoral student at the Harvard School of Public Health.

Researchers brought together 10,711 adults between 19 and 64 from the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey of 2007-2009. They found that when subjects ate instant noodles, which could be ramen, lo mein, glass, Thai, or another, twice weekly, they had a higher risk of cardiometabolic syndrome, which is a combination of abnormalities in the body that affect the cardiovascular, renal, and metabolic systems.

The specific cause is not entirely clear, but it could stem from the Styrofoam base of many noodles, which contains bisphenol A (BPA), which is a known hormone disruptor. This could also explain why women have been more affected by this phenomena. The truth is though that ramens have plenty of different unhealthy ingredients. So it may be BPA, or it may be something else. It could very well be the MSG or the TBHQ (tertiary-butylhydroquinone), or the fact that it is high in saturated fat.

The study was specific to people in South Korea, which is generally seen to be on the healthier side. However, they also have the highest per capita instant noodle consumption in the world so far. There has been a rise in health problems in Korea in recent years, which includes obesity and heart disease. The findings seem to also apply to consumers who are in the United States, which ranks 6th globally for instant noodle sales.

In 2012, there were those who talked about the unhealthy effects of ramen noodles as well. They took a viral video inside the digestive tract, which was small and inconclusive granted as a study, conducted by Dr Braden Kuo. According to the video, the stomach was working overtime, and it struggled for hours at a time to grind up and digest the food. Malaysian health officials also issued a warning against ramen noodles due to ingredients like stabilizers, sodium, and unhealthy preservatives.

Foods That Fight Stress

You’re running a million miles an hour. There’s so much to do and so little time to do it in. Without a doubt, you have plenty to deal with, and this could lead to plenty of junk food. After all, it’s a lot easier to run to McDonald’s than to take the time to cook a healthier meal. Unfortunately, these foods we reach for when we’re stressed and in a hurry are not only unhealthy, they are also more likely to raise your stress levels.

Why not help yourself out and at least find foods that are easy to get ahold of, but healthier and able to actually reduce your stress levels? Here are a few:

  1. Blueberries

    Blueberries have an incredibly high concentration of healthy antioxidants, which can reduce inflammation and fight cell damage. It can also help you to regulate your blood sugar levels, and by reducing stress, you might even reduce belly fat. The low calorie, high nutrient density certainly doesn’t hurt.

  2. Peaches

    Peaches have plenty of healthy potassium that can help to lower blood pressure. It also has plenty of beta carotene and antioxidants, fighting harmful free radicals and inflammation once again while giving you that sweetness without all the extra empty calories of many candies.

  3. Cacao

    This is also known as cocoa or chocolate. It’s not the best tasting thing you ever had on its own. However….it does have a lot of phenylethylamine, which reduces stress and improves your mood all at the same time. You can add it to smoothies, and you can also get it from dark chocolate with minimal extra sugar and dairy. The darker the chocolate the better.

  4. Maca

    This is available as a powder, but I understand it’s difficult to get it in whole form. Made from a Peruvian root, Maca has a phytonutrient that can help you to fight anxiety and depression with natural energy and hormone balancing effects. You can easily mix this into a smoothie.

  5. Spinach

    Spinach has plenty of healthy magnesium, and it can improve your body’s natural response to stress while preventing spikes in your blood pressure.

  6. Walnuts

    Walnuts have been through multiple studies, and they have shown that just one ounce a day could actually help to regulate your blood pressure and prevent it from rising. It can also keep your anxiety levels in check. Just put some on your salad.

Half Of Cancer Deaths Are Preventable

According to recent reports, half of the cancer deaths we see are completely preventable. That’s a pretty weighty assumption, but it was announced by the American Association for Cancer Research.

Dr Ernest Hawk, spokesman for the AACR, says, The important part here is that it points out gaps that we have in translating knowledge into action by much of the population. Part of it is human nature, but we can at least keep sharing the knowledge.

The report notes some important points including:

  • Tobacco use is responsible for almost 30% of cancer deaths across the United States
  • Ultraviolet radiation from the sun and indoor tanners is responsible for most skin cancer
  • You can develop a personalized cancer screening with your doctor
  • 1 in 5 cancer diagnoses worldwide can be attributed to persistent pathogen infection. These can be prevented with vaccines or treatment
  • As much as 1/3 of all new cancer diagnosis in the United States are related to being overweight or obese along with lack of physical activity and poor diet habits

The release includes various other studies and updates about treatments, clinical trials, and plenty of other breakthroughs. It includes studies specifically on cancer survivors today.

To avoid cancer, experts recommend eating more healthy foods, exercising regularly, and not smoking to start. The report also notes that in 2015, 200,000 people will die of cancer due to tobacco use. Despite the issues we have seen with tobacco, almost 800,000 people will start smoking in a single year.

Hawk also believes that Cervical cancer should be entirely preventable between screenings and vaccines.

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