Monday, November 12, 2012

Healthy Eating in College - Tips For Students

Healthy eating in college can be difficult on a budget, but just because you have little money does not mean you need to eat food with little nutritional value. With these few handy hints and tips, healthy eating in college can be simple...

1. Make a list
If you make a list when you are going shopping you are less likely to be tempted by pricey, unnecessary items. On a side note, eating before going shopping will make sure that you do not impulse buy and keep to your shopping list.

2. Plan your meals
If you plan your meals for the week, you'll know what to put on your shopping list and it will motivate you to cook in the evening. Meals don't have to be difficult, look for easy recipes online.

3. Buy value ingredients
Just because ingredients are in the value range, it doesn't mean they aren't as good. It may be that the vegetables are different shapes and sizes, but they will all taste the same in the end. People shopping with their eyes instead of their head is the main reason supermarkets can charge more for standardized looking vegetables.

4. Keep an eye out for bargains
If you have a freezer, bargain shopping is easy. If something is buy one get one free, eat one and freeze the other. It is also a good idea to keep an eye out in the clearance section, although the food may be going out of date in a day or two, if you freeze it, it can last for months.

5. Buy tins
Fruit can be expensive and goes off quickly, but tinned fruit will last for months and is still just as good for you. It makes a great snack, try it with some frozen yoghurt. You can also buy tinned vegetables - be aware of what the fruit and vegetables are preserved in though, avoid salted water and syrup and look for those stored in water or their own juice.

6. Frozen foods
Frozen vegetables actually hold their nutritional value better than fresh and are far more convenient, they will also last longer so take advantage of buying larger packs as they are generally more economical.

7. Drink water
Although in can be tempting to hit the fizzy drinks, your body needs water, particularly if it has been put through the wars with alcohol! Water is healthy and free, so try to drink 7 - 8 glasses a day.

8. Eat breakfast
Eating breakfast will stop you feeling hungry during the day and prevent napping in lectures. Breakfast does exactly what it says on the tin, it breaks a fast, so make sure you grab something in the morning (even if you are running late!) It needn't be a cooked meal, keep some fruit and cereal bars handy to throw in your bag on the way to lectures.

9. Healthy snacks
Often people fall down when they are having an energy slump and reach for the chocolate or other naughty snacks. Keeping some healthy snacks on you is a great way of avoiding the sugar cravings, fruit and vegetables are obviously a great option, but if you are in need of something a bit more interesting, try taking some vegetable crisps instead.

10. Variety
A varied diet is important for health and to stop you getting bored. Try something new each week to keep your diet interesting. Variety is the spice of life!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Healthy Tips For Your Prostate

Prostate cancer
is a serious and often deadly disease. Statistics suggest that annually, over 240,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer and over 33,000 will die from this type of cancer. For American men it is the second leading cause of cancer related deaths. If your prostate becomes enlarged it can cause other health issues such as prostatitis. There are many ways men can improve their overall health and protect the health of their prostate. Making wise choices regarding lifestyle and dietary decisions can be very impactful towards reducing the risk of developing this disease.

Healthy Diet: Focus on eating a healthy and well balanced diet. This should include plenty of fresh vegetables and fruits. The vitamin and mineral content in fruits and vegetable are high and will keep you feeling satisfied and full. This should help you to avoid the temptation of over eating other types of foods that are not as good for you. A fruit or vegetable also makes a great snack. For example, carrot and celery sticks or an apple can be both a nutritious and delicious snack.

Eating more plant based foods over animal proteins is a good choice as well. There have been studies which suggest a possible link between diets high in animal fats and the development of prostate cancer. Substitute plant based oils for animal fats such as butter. Use olive oil instead. To dress up a salad substitute cheese with a sprinkling of seeds or nuts. There are many great alternatives to animal based foods. Some good vegetable choices include tomatoes, brussel sprouts and kale. Tomatoes are high in lycopene which is a very powerful antioxidant. Brussel sprouts and kale are very healthy cruciferous vegetables. Some fruits high in lycopene include papaya and watermelon. Be creative and enjoy eating these healthier options.

Low Fat: Foods that are high in fats include proteins such as meat as well as dairy products. You should reduce the amount of fat you consume daily and opt for lower fat choices. Dairy products such as milk, cheese and yogurt are high in calories and fat. When eating meat, always choose the leaner types and cuts. Consuming chicken or turkey breast is a much healthier alternative to fatty steaks or burgers.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids: You should aim for 2-3 servings of fatty fish such as salmon, tuna or sardines weekly. The high levels of omega-3 fatty acids that are found in these types of seafood are very healthy and have been linked to possible disease prevention. Avoid the farm raised variety and try to eat wild caught seafood.

Alcohol consumption: Keep alcohol consumption in moderation. Limit yourself to one drink daily if you do choose to consume alcohol. And it goes without saying that smoking should be discontinued if indeed you do smoke.

Weight Management: Being overweight increases your risk for a wide variety of diseases. If you are overweight try to begin a sensible weight loss program that is both healthy and realistic. Do not participate in fad or dangerous dieting regimens. Instead focus on eating healthy, wholesome foods and reducing your caloric intake. Cut out processed foods, sugars and white flour based products. All of these foods are high in calories and tend to create weight gain in people. Look at an online "BMI" chart which is also known as the "body mass index" chart. You will be able to determine what is a healthy weight for your height and gender. You can determine if you are overweight by looking at a BMI chart.

Exercise: Incorporating exercise into your lifestyle is so very important to your overall health and well being. Exercise will not only help you lose weight, it will help you maintain your weight, therefore preventing obesity. It is ideal to exercise for 20-30 minutes daily. There are so many options for you when it comes to exercise that you really must just find something that you enjoy doing. For example walking, hiking, tennis or joining a gym are all good choices. Find little ways during the day to get more exercise in as well. Use the stairs instead of the elevator or walk to local shopping instead of using the car are great ways to increase your exercise time throughout the week. Exercise has been shown to strengthen both the immune and digestive systems. By improving your circulation it can also reduce the risk of your prostate becoming enlarged.

Stress: Make sure that you reduce the stress levels in your life. Stress is a major component in weakening the immune system. This can make you more vulnerable to illness. Find a healthy balance in your lifestyle by focusing on positive changes you can make to improve the quality of your life.

Some Additional Tips: If you have a family history of prostate cancer you should let your doctor know as this increases your risk. At the age of 50 you should begin getting the appropriate screening and diagnostic testing that is available to catch this disease in its early stages when it is most treatable. Remember whenever beginning any dietary or lifestyle changes, always consult with a medical professional, particularly if you are taking prescription drugs or suffer from any disease or ailment.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Tips on Maintaining a Healthy Lifestyle

With all the things we do every single day, it's hard enough to keep track of the food we eat and the amount of exercise we get on a daily basis. Often we even skip meals and fail to have time for exercise because of a very busy schedule at work and with our families. It is important to remember, however, that keeping ourselves healthy and maintaining a healthy lifestyle is necessary for us to function better at work and avoid being sick too often. Neglecting our responsibilities to ourselves can result in several negative things we don't even want to think about.

A stressful, healthy life is what we've always dreamed of, and sometimes we just can't think about this being pre-occupied with so many things. Here are a few tips on maintaining a healthy lifestyle you can surely benefit from.

1. Develop a good eating habit, and eat as much as you can. Food is actually nourishment for the mind and the body, but too much of this won't be good for you either. A good eating habit means eating only what is good for you, as many times as possible. Avoid junk and processed food (those you get from fast foods). You can also try consulting a dietician to get the exact amount of nutrients you need on a daily basis.

2. Drink lots of water. Dehydration can cause different types of illnesses, hydrating can help you avoid them. Mix water with your favorite fruit juices (fresh fruits only) to add color to the taste. Since our bodies are mostly made up of water (about eighty percent), a sufficient amount will make you stronger and healthier, and making it a habit will keep you from turning to sodas or artificial juices, contributing to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

3. Eat lots of fresh fruits. They do not only taste great, they also provide you with the vitamins and minerals your body needs to stay healthy. Stress won't become that much of a problem when you have the nutrients from fruits to fight it off.

4. Exercise. A few minutes a day will do, and gradually increase it the way you like. Walking or jogging a few minutes a day can be very beneficial for you, so don't overlook its importance in keeping you healthy. Once it has become a habit, exercise can also contribute to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

The Reasons Behind Conflicting Health Reports

You've no doubt experience watching or reading a news report about the health benefit of something that completely contradicts a previous report. One day chocolate is bad, the next it's good for your heart. One day taking Vitamin E will help prevent heart disease, next day it may actually accelerate it. So why are there so many contradictory studies regarding fitness and health?

This is a complicated question that requires a multilayer response. It includes everything from sensationalist reporting, to special interest influence, to incomplete studies, and more. But first we have to first acknowledge that the effects of a particular food or supplement to an individual's health and fitness is incredibly hard to study as there are so many variables included.

If I was studying the effectiveness of supplement "X" in increasing muscle strength I may give Group A the supplement and group B a placebo (sugar pill). If 2 months later I find that on average the group taking supplement X gain 25% more strength than the group taking the placebo it may seem logical to conclude that supplement X do indeed increase strength. But logic and science doesn't always coincide. There area a myriad of factors that may have contributed to this result and it may purely be anecdotal, or coincidence.

It may have just happen to be that the people from group A had better sleeping patterns than B, or that they had less stress in their lives, or even that they believed in the supplement more than B. All of those factors do indeed impact your strength level. This is just 3 examples, multiply that with the thousands of components to strength building and you can see how complicated studying it can be.

Now researchers are well aware of this and that is why they have a peer reviewed system before any new studies are regarded as conclusive. Once a new study is done it is meticulously scrutinized and reviewed by fellow researchers to discover any flaws, like not accounting for the sleep pattern of Group A in relations to Group B in our example. Only then can that study be included in its applicable medical or fitness journal for even further examination before its deemed conclusive by a major health organization like American Heart Association or American College of Sports and Medicine. This aforementioned process can take years before a conclusion is reached. This is where the media plays a part.