Healthy Cove

7 STEPS TO DETOX YOUR BODY, MIND, AND LIFESTYLE

Detox Meditate

Spring and Summer are around the corner. Are you ready?

If you’re still stuck in hibernation mode from the long winter, you’re not alone. But now is a great time to detox your body, your mind, and your lifestyle to set yourself up for an active and enjoyable summer. Here are seven steps to better health and a renewed sense of vitality to make the most out of the sunny months ahead.

1. Drink more water.

Quick quiz: do you feel thirsty right now? If you do, you’re dehydrated. Water has so many amazing benefits: it helps control calorie intake, energizes your muscles, keeps your skin looking beautiful, and keeps those bowels working properly (hey, it’s important). If you’re not a fan of plain water, infuse flavour by mixing in your favourite fruit, like strawberries and blueberries or lemons and oranges, or mix in some veggies, like cucumber slices.

2. Eat more of some foods.

Asparagus, for example, contains amino acids and minerals that can help protect liver cells against toxins. And beets contain an antioxidant that can help support the cells in the liver. Check out this super simple asparagus recipe and these ways to add beets into your weekly diet.

Detox Foods Vegetables

3. Eat less of others.

Okay, so alcohol isn’t a food, but if you’re trying to detox, you’ll want to avoid it. Same with too much salt; the body needs small amounts of it to function, but too much can lead to high blood pressure, water retention (read: bloat), and other issues. And did you think I’d let you get away with processed sugar? Nope. Try to minimize your intake. Stick to natural sugars from fruit and leave the baked goods and sweets for special occasions (and I’m not talking about Fridays, I’m talking about birthdays and weddings).

4. Get moving.

This should already be a staple of your everyday life, but if you’re not super active, just get outside and walk around the neighbourhood after dinner each night. Not only can regular walks help you maintain a healthy weight and strengthen your bones and muscles, but it can also improve your mood. Major bonus.

Detox Sleep

5. Hit the hay.

And by that I mean make sure your head is hitting your pillow at least seven to nine hours a night. A proper night’s sleep can work wonders on your mood by lowering your stress levels, among other benefits. If you have trouble getting to sleep, make sure your bedroom is cool and dark, and try taking a shower right before your target bedtime.

Detox Clean House Minimal

6. Clean up your living space.

Detox doesn’t just take place in your body and mind—it also includes your surroundings. Spend some time decluttering your closet and getting rid of the things you don’t need anymore. Open your windows and let fresh air in. Organize that junk drawer. Decluttering has great benefits, but my personal favourite is taking back that feeling of control over your life. Your things don’t own you! Get rid of the excess and you’ll gain so much more in return.

Detox Probiotic

7. Support your healthy diet with high-quality digestion and detox supplements.

Even if you’re eating a healthy diet, it can be difficult to get all nutrients your body needs from food alone. Aim for optimal nutrition with supplementation rather than simply skating by with the Recommended Daily Allowance (which is a minimum to prevent nutrient deficiency). The USANA Digestion & Detox Pack, along with the CellSentials™, made with InCelligence technology, offer our best products to support your efforts for a renewed sense of well-being.* The pack is specially put together to last you 28 days—perfect for a pre-summer detox.5

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How to Achieve Healthy Weight Loss that Lasts

If you’re alarmed by the number on the bathroom scale, you probably want to find a way to lose weight fast. But healthy weight loss takes place over time, not over the weekend.

Small, manageable changes to your diet and exercise will yield lasting results—even if it feels too slow. It’s important to think about weight loss as a sustainable solution, not a quick fix. This kind of thinking isn’t your fault.

The idea that you can lose a lot of weight quickly and maintain it long-term is a classic weight-loss trap. Avoid it by sidestepping the well-trod path of rigid diets that leave you feeling hungry. These diet plans produce results that may not last long. You could quickly tire of the restrictions and find yourself rebounding into old habits. And it’s more likely you gain the weight back than see lasting changes.

That’s because quick weight loss isn’t the best way to settle at a healthy weight. In other words, it simply isn’t sustainable.

Incremental changes over a longer period of time aren’t flashy or cool, but they are the best path to a healthy weight. This includes lifestyle modifications and shifts in the way you think about food, rather than just how much you eat.

Eat up these facts about how this measured approach is the right one for healthy weight loss that will last.

Why Healthy Weight Loss is a Marathon, Not a Sprint

Here’s a fun fact: It takes a deficit of 3,500 calories to lose one pound (equal to about 0.5 kilograms) of fat. If that seems like a lot of calories, that’s because it is. The average recommended daily calorie intake for adults is 2,000 calories. So, one pound of fat represents almost as many calories as two full days of eating.

This is one reason why healthy weight loss is a gradual process. If you want to lose weight, you have to start by reducing the number of calories you consume. If you eat 500 fewer calories each day than you burn, you can expect to lose one pound over the course of a week.

You can achieve this calorie deficit with diet alone. Or you can mix in exercise to burn more calories in a day. Thirty minutes, five times a week is a great place to start. Focus on any type of exercise or activity that increases your heart rate and moves your body.

By incrementally altering your diet and exercise habits, you can safely lose one to two pounds a week. At the same time, you’re creating manageable lifestyle habits that can stick.

The Open Secret to Weight Loss: Calorie Deficit
No matter what new diets promise, the proven way to lose weight is by creating a calorie deficit. Calories are converted from food into cellular energy by your body during metabolism. They power muscle contractions, breath, brain activity, and so much more. But when you consume more calories that your body needs to operate, they are stored as fat (including visceral fat) for later use.Learn more about calories in this helpful overview.

Typical Changes in Your Weekly Weight-Loss Rate

Even a gentle, incremental start to losing weight can provide you with an encouraging beginning. That’s because it’s possible to lose more in the first few weeks of your weight loss journey.

Build on the momentum, but understand what’s going on biologically. This quick start is the result of your body ridding itself of extra water weight. But staying the course means your weekly weight-loss rate could eventually settle around a pound or two per week—the incremental, sustainable rate you want.

Be cautious of diets and exercise programs that promise faster results. And remember that it’s typical to experience a weight-loss plateau a few weeks after you start. This is your body’s natural response to a sudden drop in weight. Along with the fat loss you’re aiming for, it’s possible to lose a bit of muscle mass, too.

Since muscles are the calorie-burning machines of the body, decreasing their mass can hurt your rate of calories burned. You can minimize muscle loss by ramping up your exercise and keeping your protein intake high. That way you’ll bust through the plateau in no time.

One way to break through periods of changing weight-loss rate is to focus on why you’re doing it. People lose weight for many different reasons. But the fact is, living at a healthy weight benefits your overall well-being.

The heart is one of the first organs to see lasting benefits. Maintaining a healthy weight supports your cardiovascular function, circulation, and reduces the workload on your heart.

Sleep issues are often linked to being overweight. So, one added benefit of your healthy weight loss could be improved sleep. Healthy weight loss can also be good for your mood and help support healthy energy levels. You may find you have more strength and endurance than before, along with a boost in self-esteem that often comes with weight loss.

Designing a Sustainable Weight-Loss Diet: Quality of Calories vs. Quantity of Calories

Diet is one of two main ways to control your calorie balance sheet. So, what you eat obviously plays a key role in the success of your weight loss journey.

While the numbers vary individually and by gender, adults need between 1,600 and 3,000 calories each day to thrive. As you’ve read above, a moderate, consistent calorie deficit will be enough to trigger weight loss.

But you should think beyond simple calorie counts.

It’s important to know all foods are not created equal. Some are high or low calorie. Some foods are filling, while others are not. Look at what you’re eating to determine if the calories in your food are being put to good use.

High-calorie, low-quality foods eat up a large piece of your daily intake, but don’t fill you up. Take soda for example. A 12-ounce serving of the sugary drink represents about 150 calories. These empty calories are all liquid, without fiber or other nutrients, and leave you hungry. Eating 150 calories of filling, fibrous vegetables have a different outcome.

Cutting out empty calories will bring you closer to your weight loss goals. Aim to make high quality, whole foods—like vegetables and lean protein—the center of your diet. Poultry, lean beef, and fatty fish provide quality nutrition and ample energy without the extra calories, starches, or sugars typically found in processed foods. Green vegetables are naturally low-calorie and packed with fiber that leaves you feeling full long after you eat.

On a daily basis, that means limiting high-calorie, low-fiber foods—like sugary drinks, fruit juice, and candy. Replace the drinks with water and snack on an apple instead. Always remaining mindful of where your calories are coming from can help you take control of your diet and create lasting, healthy weight loss.

Up the Ante on ExerciseIt often takes healthy eating and exercise to create lasting weight loss. Experts recommend 150 minutes of exercise each week to achieve healthy weight loss. That can look like 30 minutes of exercise, five days a week, or three 50-minute workouts.One of the best tips for your meeting long-term weight loss goals is to find a physical activity that suits you. Exercise isn’t limited to grueling days at the gym. It can look like a walk or jog with a friend, a hike in the woods, playing a sport, or a group fitness class in your neighborhood.Don’t beat yourself up if your exercise routine is at a beginner level. Everyone starts somewhere. You will gain strength over time. Your endurance will improve. Soon you’ll find you can do more, have more fun, and feel better.

Celebrating Non-Scale Victories Helps with Long-Term Weight Loss

Over the course of your weight-loss journey, there will be hiccups that slow or halt your progress. You might indulge in too many sweet treats, catch a cold, or suffer an injury. When these obstacles pop up, don’t fret.

Trust the process. Continue to eat well. Also keep incorporating regular exercise to help break out of your slump. No matter whether your weight loss is flourishing or has plateaued, celebrate achievements other than the number on the scale.

Here are some examples of non-scale victories worthy of revelry:

  • Fitting into old clothes
  • Keeping up with your kids
  • Increasing endurance during exercise
  • Experiencing better sleep
  • Developing a new love for healthy food
  • Feeling more energized
  • Gaining self-confidence
  • Noticing an improved sense of overall health and wellbeing

These non-scale victories will make the excitement of reaching your goal weight even sweeter. You’ll feel better in your body and see all the fruits of your hard work.

Remember that a slow, steady pace is the key to long-term weight-loss success. When you focus on the whole-body benefits of weight loss, you’ll summon the willpower to keep going. If you need more motivation, think of your heart, mental health, sleep, and endurance improving each day. Reaching a healthy weight has added benefits that set you up for a happy and full life ahead.

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A SMARTER WORKOUT PLAN: EXERCISE FOR BRAIN HEALTH

POP QUIZ: Who was the first Prime Minister of Canada? How many U.S. states have “City” in the name of their capital? Who was the first drummer for the Beatles?

And one more: is physical exercise good for mental health?

There are plenty of great reasons to be physically active, but here’s one you might not think about often. According to a recent University of British Columbia study, researchers concluded regular aerobic exercise (exercise that gets your heart and sweat glands pumping) can maintain the size of the hippocampus, the verbal memory and learning part of your brain. These scientists identified a direct correlation between exercise and keeping your wits.

Now, this might not help you remember John A. Macdonald was Canada’s first prime minister, Jefferson, Oklahoma, Carson, and Salt Lake have city in the state capital, or Pete Best was replaced by Ringo Starr, but it does reveal aerobic exercise is not just good for your physical health. It’s also essential for your brain health.

A Smarter Hippocampus

Tucked under your cerebral cortex is a funny-looking gland in your brain called the hippocampus. FUN FACT: Your short- and long-term memory and spatial memory gland is shaped like a seahorse. And it’s all in the name—from the Greek words hippos (horse) and kampos (sea-monster). The hippocampus plays an important role in the formation of new memories, both episodic and autobiographical, and declarative memories.

This is a fancy way of saying the hippocampus can assist you in remembering what you had for breakfast, how to navigate from home to work, and memorizing facts and figures.

Your brain has two hippocampi, bilateral, each located in the medial temporal lobe. Research has shown that damage to the hippocampus can result in the inability to form and retain memories.  Conversely, when you supply your hippocampus with oxygenated blood from exercise, it can keep your brain healthy. In addition, exercise helps improve mood and sleep which goes a long way to reduce stress and anxiety.

That’s why it’s important to get aerobic exercise throughout the week.

The Muscle Between Your Ears

So, what’s the best exercise for brain health?

Neurologist Dr. Scott McGinnis from Harvard Medical School suggests something as simple as a brisk walk for one hour, twice a week, can be enough. But here’s the deal: it can be anything. Swimming, bicycling, a dance class, or even household activities can get your blood moving and work up a sweat. The Mayo Clinic suggests a simple way to determine your maximum heart rate is to subtract your age from 220. For example, if you’re 40 years old, subtract 40 from 220 to get a maximum heart rate of 180.

So, find an activity you enjoy and get moving. Sign up for a Zumba class or try yoga. Give the rock-climbing gym a shot or make sure your dog gets a daily walk. It doesn’t matter what you do as long as you’re raising your heart rate—helping not just your brain, but your entire body.

Riddle Me This

Physical activity is great for brain health, but don’t forget to keep your mind sharp with mental activities. Muscles can atrophy over time if you don’t use them, and your brain is no different. Keep your brain performing at high levels, maximizing your cognitive powers with these stimulating tips.

  • Eat well. Good nutrients are important. Make sure your meals include omega-3 fatty acids, leafy greens, oils, eggs, and walnuts to help support your brain.
  • Do math in your head. Lose the paper and pencil and make simple calculations in your head. The next time you get change at the store, see if you can figure out the amount before the cashier.
  • Take a cooking class. Cooking uses a number of senses: smell, touch, sight, and taste. Stimulate your brain by cooking something new.
  • Explore your taste buds. Speaking of food, the next time you get a meal, try to figure out each of the ingredients in the recipe. Small tests like this can help expand your mind’s appreciation for flavor and texture.
  • Play an instrument. Learning to play a musical instrument takes time and discipline. It also keeps your mind engaged as you make beautiful music.
  • Learn a foreign language. Picking up a new language later in life is hard, but not impossible. It requires listening and practicing new words, and it’s a great way to stimulate your mind.
  • Read a book. Never underestimate the importance of reading. Books and magazines not only inform and entertain you, but they keep your mind sharp and focused.

Just like regular exercise can help with heart health, mental exercises can keep you living an engaged lifestyle. Let us know in the comment section what you do to improve your brain health. Link videos or programs you use to keep your mind active.

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THE HEART KNOWS WHAT THE HEART KNOWS

Old Blues Eyes had it figured out.

Frank Sinatra’s 1956 tune “You Make Me Feel So Young” hits all the right notes. It starts with a blasting horn line underscored with soothing strings and a walking bassline guaranteed to get your fingers snapping. And then Sinatra lends his voice to one of his all-time greats.

It’s about a young man swooning in love with his new lady friend. When he is with her, he’s unstoppable. She gives him the strength to bounce the moon just like a toy balloon. All he wants to do is pick flowers with her and spend every moment together. And it ends with the perfect message: “And even when I’m old and grey, I’m gonna feel the way I do today.”

It’s a wonderful message and hopefully one we’re all lucky enough to feel just once in our lives.

Bells to be Rung and Songs to be Sung

Evidence shows being in love may elevate your heart’s health. It’s more than running through meadows picking lots of forget-me-nots (although this is a good cardiovascular activity). People in committed relationships actually have improved heart health.

A recent study in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health followed 620 married fathers and found that those who were in flourishing marriages experienced improvements in several cardiovascular risk factors, including cholesterol and body mass index (BMI). Comparing those in happy relationships to ones that deteriorated over time, happy relationships showed lower rates of high blood pressure. The report suggests several reasons why people in healthy relationships tend to have fewer health issues. It starts with the social support offered by each partner.

Those in happy relationships encourage the other to take care of themselves, provide care, and cheer on new, healthy behaviors.

Men seem to benefit more from these relationships. The study found that men in happy relationships have better health outcomes, including fewer hospitalizations, fewer severe disease, and less physical pain. The thinking behind this research suggests people who have partners who can share things are more likely to address problems sooner than later. Those in harmful relationships are more likely to produce pro-inflammatory cytokines, which can lead to arthritis, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases.

Every Time I See You Grin

The better the relationship, the bigger the payoff. Harvard Medical School published an article stating there are biological and behavioural benefits when people stay in long-term, happy relationships. Looking at over 309,000 subjects, they found people in solid relationships were less likely to suffer from “harmful levels of stress, which can adversely affect coronary arteries, gut function, insulin regulations, and the immune system.”

Essentially, the article encourages people to pursue healthy, couple-building activities. When you’re working toward common goals, you’re less likely to develop habits damaging to the relationship. Take care of your partner and they’ll take care of you.

Just as important as fostering a positive relationship is being conscious of the dangers of being in a negative relationship. An article published in the Journal of the American Heart Association suggests that partners who annoy you, demand too much, ignore you, or pressure you to do things you don’t want to do are more likely to develop cardiovascular diseases.

It makes sense. When you’re feeling unvalued or neglected, you’re likely to develop resentment or depression. These stressful life events and other social strains are associated with early indicators of cardiovascular disease. By avoiding harmful relationships, you are mitigating the risk of developing unnecessary stress which can manifest in a number of health issues.

Tips for Good Heart Health

  1. Get exercise 
  2. Drink plenty of water 
  3. Eat healthy foods 
  4. Get good sleep

East Coast Life Solutions product partner with USANA Health Sciences. We are passionate health influencers, sharing a message of prioritizing self-care and making it a habit.

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BACK TO HEART HEALTH BASICS

That heart-shaped sugar cookie tastes great around Valentine’s Day. But is it the best thing for your heart?

Sweets and chocolates are surefire ways to show the people you love you’re thinking of them during the most romantic month of the year, but if you really love somebody, you’ll give them a bouquet of kale.

The problem is most people don’t get a second date when they gift cruciferous vegetables.

A healthy diet and regular exercise are the best ways to strengthen and protect your heart, not just in February, but all year long. As we enter Heart Health Month, here are some thought-provoking articles on the best ways to show your heart how much you care.

Feed Your Ticker

Good heart health starts with a good diet. But do you know what kinds of foods your heart needs to work at optimal levels? Check out this great article on the importance of macro and micronutrition to support the muscle that supports you.

We Got the Beat

The heart meets the challenges your body throws at it. But what’s the optimal level of beats per minute? If you’re working out, your heart is going to beat faster compared to sitting on the couch watching television. Get in rhythm and find out your best heart rate.

A Lovely Combination

A balanced diet and exercise are fantastic to support your heart and adding key nutrients to your diet can promote your healthy heart. Try adding USANA’s premier heart health supplement, Proflavanol® C100, to your daily routine. Made with grape-seed extract and vitamin C, Proflavanol C100 has the nutrients you need to support your heart.*

Get Moving

One of the best ways to protect your heart is regular exercise, five times a week for 30 minutes. And it doesn’t have to be triathlon training. There are lots of ways to get your heart rate up, from jogging to lifting weights to going for a swim. Get motivated and get your heart rate up with these simple tips for better health.

Fuel Your Powerhouse

Try saying coenzyme Q10 five times fast. Not easy, is it? This tongue twister is a superstar at helping your heart with the nutrients needs to support your cardiovascular system. Learn the science behind coenzyme Q10 and how it helps your heart.

Power Your Heart

Now you know what coenzyme Q10 does for your heart, you’re probably curious how to fuel your cells. That means you’re ready for CoQuinone® 30. Formulated with a well-absorbed form of coenzyme Q10 with alpha-lipoic acid for maximum benefits, CoQuinone 30 gives your cellular power plants the charge they need to stay energized. Discover what CoQuinone 30 can do for you.*

Valentine’s Day might only come once a year, but good heart health is something you should celebrate every day. Treat your cardiovascular system with a smart diet, get plenty of exercise, and promote your heart health with CoQuinone 30.* Tell us in the comment section how you help your heart and give your best tips for strengthening the most important muscle in your body.

 

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*THESE STATEMENTS HAVE NOT BEEN EVALUATED BY THE FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION. THIS PRODUCT IS NOT INTENDED TO DIAGNOSE, TREAT, CURE, OR PREVENT ANY DISEASE.
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SUPPLEMENT SPOTLIGHT: USANA LOVES HEART HEALTH MONTH

Heart Health MonthHeart Health

 

Did you know February is American Heart Health Month? It seems only fitting that the month we see so many fun Valentine hearts floating around is also the month we are asked to remember the physical state of our hearts by being more health conscious.

Since it is heart health month, I thought it was time we talked about one of USANA’s premier products for heart health: Proflavanol® C100. Let’s discuss how this supplement can help support the health of you and your loved ones.

A Lovely Combination

Proflavanol has two main ingredients for heart health: grape seed extract and vitamin C.

Grape Seed Extract

When it comes to “super fruits” that have antioxidant benefits, grapes are one of the best sources out there. I know, I know, grapes aren’t a newfound, ultra-rare berry found in some remote jungle, but they pack a punch when it comes to antioxidants. The seeds in grapes are rich in bioflavonoids, that help support a healthy heart.*

Heart Health MonthPoly C® Blend

USANA’s proprietary Poly C blend contains unique ingredients that help raise vitamin C levels in your body for a prolonged period of time when compared to more common forms of vitamin C like ascorbic acid. Most people associate vitamin C with its immune-supporting qualities, but it has also been shown to support cardiovascular health.*

What makes Proflavanol even more unique is that it’s made with USANA’s innovative Nutritional Hybrid Technology, so it combines these two nutrients into one powerful supplement to help you maintain good health. A study USANA Scientists conducted in collaboration with Boston University found that supplementation with both grape seed extract and vitamin C has a positive influence on healthy blood flow to support cardiovascular health.

Keep it Pumping

Did you know the average adult heart pumps 2,000 gallons of blood each day? And as one of the hardest-working organs in the body, the heart has unique nutritional needs. USANA’s heart health supplements are specially designed to support healthy heart function:

  • Support healthy circulation*
  • Help maintain healthy cholesterol levels already within the normal range*
  • Maintain good health by neutralizing free radicals, which can cause excessive oxidative stress over time*
  • Support healthy immune function*

So you can see Proflavanol is a fantastic choice if you’re looking for a supplement optimized specifically for heart health.*

If You Struggle with Exercise

In addition to proper nutrition, we should all work on fostering healthy habits of regular exercise and activity. I’ll be honest, I’ve never been fantastic at following a consistent exercise routine. My efforts have been sporadic at best, but I do love to stay active. I especially enjoy tennis and snowboarding.

Snowboarding

I came across this concept years ago, and it really stuck with me: “If you find an activity you love doing, you’ll never have to exercise a day in your life.”

So if you’re the type who struggles with a regular exercise program (like I do), try to find fun hobbies or activities that will get you off of the couch and moving around. Doing these a few times a week can help out.

On top of that, eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts and legumes, and limiting highly refined carbohydrates is important in supporting a healthy heart. And don’t forget to take your Proflavanol as well.*

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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ACHIEVE YOUR GOALS WITH THIS WEIGHT MANAGEMENT CHECKLIST

Journal, tape measure and apple - diet concept

It’s time to lighten your load—literally. Carrying around extra weight isn’t good for your body. You know that. But staying at a healthy weight is easier said than done. This weight management checklist helps you focus your energy on impactful activities. Start checking off items and building momentum to achieve weight management goals.

Maintaining a healthy weight is all about the balance of calories in and calories out. Use more than you take in and you lose weight. Do the opposite, and you gain. If they’re balanced, that’s how you maintain.

This means a focus on diet and exercise together. But this weight management checklist goes deeper and provides simple tips to get you started.

It’s time to start checking off some boxes.

Cropped image of businesswoman writing on checklist

Item 1: Set a Goal for a Healthy Weight

Determining your target weight isn’t a guessing game. There are many factors that can help you determine the right number for you.

The most common way to figure out a healthy weight is using the Body Mass Index (BMI). This is a ratio of your height to weight. This is going to involve some math, but you can do it (or use a BMI calculator). You can find your BMI with this equation:

Weight in Kilograms(kg)/(Height in meters)2

Here’s an example: Dave is 84 kg (or about 185 pounds) and 1.8288 meters (six feet tall). His BMI would be 25.1, which is just barely in the overweight range. (Here’s the math: 1.8288 squared is 3.345, and 84 divided by 3.345 is 25.1.)

The healthy range for BMI is 18.5 to 24.9. That’s what you want to aim for. There are charts available that will give you the healthy weight range for your height.

But BMI isn’t everything. It’s a very simple calculation that doesn’t consider different circumstances.

You can also use measurements like body fat percent or determining belly circumference (around the belly button) to help determine your ideal weight. Body fat percentages should be less than 31% for women and 25% for menBelly circumferences should be less than 40 inches (102 cm) for men and 35 inches (88 cm) for women.

If this is all a little bit overwhelming (and math can do that) you can always talk to your doctor, dietician, or nutritionist. They’re great resources.

Item 2: Assess Your Calorie Needs

Calories aren’t scary or mysterious. They’re simply the units used to measure energy in your food. And you need calories to run all the processes of your body.

Most of what you see about calories is based on an average diet of 2,000 calories per day for women and 2,500 a day for men. That’s a good starting place. But there are many factors to consider when assessing your daily calorie needs.

Weight and activity are probably the biggest considerations. A larger person needs more calories. That’s because you need more energy to move around more weight. And if you’re on the go a lot or you’re an athlete, you need more fuel to support that extra activity.

Age and sex are two other factors. Calorie needs decrease with age. And men need about 500 more calories per day (on average) than women. That’s mostly due to their overall larger size and the fact that they have a higher basal metabolic rate or BMR.

BMR is what your body burns at rest. About two-thirds of your calories are used this way—just to keep your body running smoothly. Those are like freebies. The rest of your calories are burned because of activities you do during the day.

There are calculators that will tell you your BMR and how many calories you need to maintain your weight. But for simplicity’s sake, if you’re a man, it should be around 2,500 calories. If you’re a woman, that number is around 2,000.

Use those as the starting point for maintaining a healthy weight. You can adjust your needs if you’re more active, larger, or have other health considerations.

Item 3: Design a Diet to Achieve Your Weight Management Goals

You know how much fuel (calories) your body needs. But counting calories is just a part of planning your perfect weight-management diet.

The foods you choose to acquire those calories makes a big difference. Think about how 300 calories of sugary treats compare to 300 calories of almonds and fruit. One will fill you up with fiber, sustained energy, and micronutrients. The sugary snack is empty energy that can lead to a crash.

Like any healthy diet, you should target a balance of nutrient-rich protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats. Focus on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, plant-based fats, and foods with fiber.

Protein (especially in the morning) and fiber are especially important. You only absorb half the available calories in fiber. And it helps you feel full for longer. Also, don’t forget to drink plenty of water.

Any diet should give you a foundation of vitaminsminerals, and beneficial plant compounds. It’s the starting point for getting your body all the nutrients it needs.

Item 4: Examine Your Exercise Expectations

The best exercise plan is one you can follow. That’s a popular saying, but it’s true (the same is true for your diet, too). You don’t want to make these common mistakes:

  • Starting at a higher level than necessary
  • Forcing yourself into activities you hate
  • Expecting results right away

Being honest with yourself about your fitness level will help you avoid jumping into something too hard. You really shouldn’t run before you walk. So, assess where you are and work—in steps, since health won’t happen all at once—to get where you want to go.

Taking an inventory of healthy activities you enjoy is essential to developing an effective exercise routine. You shouldn’t focus on running if you find it boring. Maybe playing a sport works better for you. Figuring out what you like to do will help you look forward to exercise instead of dreading it.

Also, properly set expectations. One trip to the gym isn’t going to reshape your body or improve your fitness. It’s a process. You have to burn 3,500 calories to eliminate a pound of fat. A good goal is using 500 more calories than you take in each day. That can lead to losing a pound a week.

And remember, exercise is only part of the equation. You can’t exercise your way out of bad eating habits. So, you need both as part of your weight-management plan.

Female runner tying her shoes preparing for a run a jog outside

Item 5: Plan Your Exercise Routine

You know what you like. You have properly set expectations. Now it’s time to plan.

Take the activities you like and figure out how many calories you’ll burn. Then figure out how many minutes are required to hit your goal for the day. You can find these estimates online or in a fitness tracker app.

Then carve out time in your daily schedule. Make sure to vary the activities so you don’t get bored or fatigue one part of your body too much. Ideally, you should get at least 150 minutes of exercise a week. The easiest way is to split that up into five, 30-minute sessions.

Item 6: Get Going

This is the simplest one on paper, but the hardest in practice. It’s also the most important part of any weight-management plan.

Doing it.

Understanding your calorie needs is great. Planning the perfect diet and exercise routine is important. Crossing off items on the weight management checklist builds momentum. But you’ll need action and perseverance to achieve your weight management goals.

So, put your plans into motion. Get out and move. And remember progress and consistency—not perfection—is what you want. You’ll have successes and snags, but focus on continuing to move forward, in the direction of your weight-management goals.

A simple way to put it is to be good—eat right and incorporate exercise—the majority of the days of the week.

Here at East Coast Life Solutions we know how easy it is to get off track after a busy socializing season and have many solutions to help you curb your appetite. Hop on over to our Special Offering page to see how to start the year off right with special product pricing.

Healthy Cove

NEW YEAR, NEW BEGINNING, NEW YOU

Team Up to RESET Your Life

RESET for a Better You

Each new year brings endless possibilities.

It’s a chance to start over, make positive changes, and become a better you. And if you’re looking for some inspiration to lose weight and look your best in 2019, here are some helpful tips to get you moving.

Most new year’s weight-loss resolutions are forgotten before January ends. Too often we bite off more than we can chew. We make crazy diet and workout goals that are far too aggressive, get frustrated, and quit. The key to your resolution success is to be consistent. Make small changes you can maintain. Things like portion control, drinking more water, tracking your exercise, and working out with friends can have big results providing you stick with it.

Action-Oriented Goals, Not Open-Ended Ones

Sure, you want to look better in 2019, but open-ended goals usually fall short. Instead of saying to yourself, “I want to lose weight,” try to think in terms of action-oriented, definable goals. For example, plan to walk 30 minutes three times a week. Instead of going strict vegan or jumping into a Paleo diet, try adding a green vegetable to every meal. Realistic goals equal real results.

Go Take a Walk

Speaking of walking 30 minutes a day, did you know a half-hour walk can burn up to 300 calories? That might not sound like much, but over the course of a year, it can make a big difference. Walking is a low-impact exercise, meaning it’s easier on your joints. The benefits of physical activity depend on three elements: intensity, duration, and frequency. Because walking is less intensive than running, you’ll have to walk for longer periods to get the same results.

Anytime you get your heart rate up, you’re doing your body a favor. Exercise makes the heart beat faster, and over time, strengthens the heart. Cardiovascular exercise improves blood circulation and can help with your mood. Find a good podcast or audiobook or invite a friend to take a walk around the block after work.

You Can’t Outrun Your Fork

There are approximately 3,500 calories in a pound. That means to lose or gain a pound, you have to burn or consume an additional 3,500 calories. Over the holidays, most of us probably overindulged a bit. Don’t worry. Slips don’t become falls in your overall health journey when you choose to get back on track.

Something I did last year that had a big impact, but felt very manageable, was to eliminate one bad eating habit each month throughout the year. For January, I gave up all soda. In February, I stopped eating donuts and bagels. In March, I made sure to eat at least two servings of vegetables for lunch and dinner. Pretty soon, I started to see results, and because it was a gradual replacement of bad foods with good ones, I found I had more energy and felt better.

Keep a food journal as you make your new year changes. Write down all of your meals and snacks. Be honest. When you examine your diet, you’ll see areas where you can improve and be able to celebrate the smart decisions you’ve made.

Love Your Workout

There’s nothing worse than signing up for a gym membership at the beginning of the year only to quit going after a couple of weeks. Not only is it a waste of money, it can be pretty disheartening. Also, sometimes those big box gyms can be pretty intimidating when you’re starting a new workout program. Instead of committing to a long-term gym membership, think about the activities you are interested in and find out if they have introductory classes. Lots of times, the first class is free.

Sign up for a boxing lesson or try out a yoga class. Maybe you’ve always wanted to try Zumba or join a cycling group. It doesn’t matter what you do to get moving, just make sure it’s an exercise program that’s interesting and something you like. It’s already hard to get motivated to work out; don’t make it worse by doing something you hate.

Drink Water

It seems simple enough, but getting enough water is important to a successful workout program. Not only do you need water to stay hydrated, but drinking water can also help lubricate your joints, help with digestion, regulate body temperature, and aid in other essential body functions.  Best of all, water has zero calories.

Make sure to drink enough water before and after your workouts. Your body needs water to help energize muscles and support your kidneys. Fluids also help your body flush and remove waste.

Drink water during each meal. Keep a bottle of water with you in your car, at your desk, or in your bag. And add to your hydration by eating more water-filled fruits and vegetables. About 20 percent of our fluid intake comes from food.

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Better yet, motivate a friend to focus on healthy fabulousness with you. When you buy one kit, you’ll get a second one 50 percent (US only).

So, what are you waiting for? Get started today and kick-start your new healthy lifestyle. Let us know in the comment section how your RESET challenge goes. And share some of your success stories as you strive to achieve your New Year resolutions.

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Coast Lifestyle

INTERMITTENT FASTING: THE SCIENCE OF GOING WITHOUT

Intermittent Fasting: Feature Photo

If you’ve recently had a conversation about dieting and weight management, then you’ve probably heard talk of intermittent fasting. But what is intermittent fasting? And is it healthy? Currently, this is quite an under-researched topic, with limited research in humans.

In other words, the answer is a little complicated, but let’s break it down together.

The Science of Going Without

Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern where you cycle between periods of eating and fasting. It’s a way to manage your weight and promote overall health, not by limiting what you eat, but by limiting when you eat.

There are several different intermittent fasting methods, such as:

  • Daily intermittent fasting: 16-hour fast followed by an eight-hour eating period each day.
  • Alternate day intermittent fasting: Cycle between 24-hour periods of eating and fasting.
  • The 5-2 method, eat regularly for five days during the week and restrict food during 2 days to about 500 to 600 calories during the fasting days.

How does intermittent fasting work? To put it simply, when your body is digesting food, it’s in the “fed state.” This typically lasts three to five hours after your last meal. During this state, your body doesn’t burn fat as efficiently because your insulin levels are high and you are getting needed energy from food.

But if you don’t eat for around eight to 12 hours after your last meal, your body will enter the “fasted state.” Your insulin levels are low because your body has stopped absorbing food and, as a result, your body burns stored food energy (fat) more easily.Intermittent Fasting: Scale

The Pros and Cons

So we know what intermittent fasting is and what it does, but the real questions are—is it healthy? Is it safe? Is it something you should do?

Your body is unique. And so is everyone else’s. Many people have tried intermittent fasting with great results, and they happily want to share their success with others.

But for many people, intermittent fasting is not the answer they’re looking for. For some people, it could even be a danger to their long-term health.

Let’s look at just a few of the many possible pros and cons of incorporating intermittent fasting into your daily life.

Pros:

  • Promotes health and weight management. Some studies show intermittent fasting may be a promising way to lose weight and improve metabolic health.
  • No calorie counting. With intermittent fasting, you don’t have to change what you eat in order to stay under your daily calories. By controlling when you eat, you have the freedom to eat what you want.
  • It’s simple. Intermittent fasting makes your day simpler. When on a fasting program, you plan for and cook less meals. Some people find this simplicity liberating, as they have more time to devote to other activities they love.

Cons:

  • Dropout rate is high. Recent studies show people may be more likely to quit an intermittent fasting routine before it can provide any real benefit to their health.
  • You could develop bad eating habits. Intermittent fasting can be very stressful for some people. This, coupled with a lack of satisfaction, means they end up eating much more than they should during non-fasting periods.
  • Dangerous for people with certain conditions. While safe for most people, intermittent fasting can have negative effects if you have diabetes, are pregnant or breastfeeding, or take certain medications. Make sure to always consult your physician before introducing any fasting routine or change in diet as part of your everyday life.

The Choice Is Yours

Intermittent Fasting: Plate

At the end of the day, there is not yet enough scientific evidence to prove or disprove intermittent fasting as superior to traditional dieting, nor to prove or disprove it promotes long-term health better than counting calories. On the flip side, there also isn’t any strong evidence it’s harmful to average adults, either.

If you have the willpower for an intermittent fasting routine, then more power to you. If not, there’s nothing wrong with a more traditional method of weight management.

Research is ongoing and, hopefully, we’ll soon know the benefit of intermittent fasting. Until then, the best diet is one you can maintain consistently—along with plenty of exercise.

 

Click here for more fun and useful articles on proper nutrition and healthy dieting.

Coast Lifestyle

Intermittent Fasting: The Science of Going Without

Intermittent Fasting: Feature Photo

If you’ve recently had a conversation about dieting and weight management, then you’ve probably heard talk of intermittent fasting. But what is intermittent fasting? And is it healthy? Currently, this is quite an under-researched topic, with limited research in humans.

In other words, the answer is a little complicated, but let’s break it down together.

The Science of Going Without

Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern where you cycle between periods of eating and fasting. It’s a way to manage your weight and promote overall health, not by limiting what you eat, but by limiting when you eat.

There are several different intermittent fasting methods, such as:

  • Daily intermittent fasting: 16-hour fast followed by an eight-hour eating period each day.
  • Alternate day intermittent fasting: Cycle between 24-hour periods of eating and fasting.
  • The 5-2 method, eat regularly for five days during the week and restrict food during 2 days to about 500 to 600 calories during the fasting days.

How does intermittent fasting work? To put it simply, when your body is digesting food, it’s in the “fed state.” This typically lasts three to five hours after your last meal. During this state, your body doesn’t burn fat as efficiently because your insulin levels are high and you are getting needed energy from food.

But if you don’t eat for around eight to 12 hours after your last meal, your body will enter the “fasted state.” Your insulin levels are low because your body has stopped absorbing food and, as a result, your body burns stored food energy (fat) more easily.Intermittent Fasting: Scale

The Pros and Cons

So we know what intermittent fasting is and what it does, but the real questions are—is it healthy? Is it safe? Is it something you should do?

Your body is unique. And so is everyone else’s. Many people have tried intermittent fasting with great results, and they happily want to share their success with others.

But for many people, intermittent fasting is not the answer they’re looking for. For some people, it could even be a danger to their long-term health.

Let’s look at just a few of the many possible pros and cons of incorporating intermittent fasting into your daily life.

Pros:

  • Promotes health and weight management. Some studies show intermittent fasting may be a promising way to lose weight and improve metabolic health.
  • No calorie counting. With intermittent fasting, you don’t have to change what you eat in order to stay under your daily calories. By controlling when you eat, you have the freedom to eat what you want.
  • It’s simple. Intermittent fasting makes your day simpler. When on a fasting program, you plan for and cook less meals. Some people find this simplicity liberating, as they have more time to devote to other activities they love.

Cons:

  • Dropout rate is high. Recent studies show people may be more likely to quit an intermittent fasting routine before it can provide any real benefit to their health.
  • You could develop bad eating habits. Intermittent fasting can be very stressful for some people. This, coupled with a lack of satisfaction, means they end up eating much more than they should during non-fasting periods.
  • Dangerous for people with certain conditions. While safe for most people, intermittent fasting can have negative effects if you have diabetes, are pregnant or breastfeeding, or take certain medications. Make sure to always consult your physician before introducing any fasting routine or change in diet as part of your everyday life.

The Choice Is Yours

Intermittent Fasting: Plate

At the end of the day, there is not yet enough scientific evidence to prove or disprove intermittent fasting as superior to traditional dieting, nor to prove or disprove it promotes long-term health better than counting calories. On the flip side, there also isn’t any strong evidence it’s harmful to average adults, either.

If you have the willpower for an intermittent fasting routine, then more power to you. If not, there’s nothing wrong with a more traditional method of weight management.

 

Research is ongoing and, hopefully, we’ll soon know the benefit of intermittent fasting. Until then, the best diet is one you can maintain consistently—along with plenty of exercise.