Coast Lifestyle

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.

Coast Lifestyle

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.

Coast Lifestyle, Healthy Cove

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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Order CoQuinone

*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.
Coast Lifestyle, ECLS Energy, Healthy Cove

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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Coast Lifestyle

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.

Try a 5-Day RESET™ Kit

Reboot your energy and curb your cravings with USANA’s 5-Day RESET Kit.

In five short days, you’ll restart your healthy lifestyle with 15 Nutrimeal™ single-serve packets, five USANA® Probiotic stick packs, and 10 (5 AM and 5 PM) HealthPak™ packets with USANA® CellSentials™ CellSentials® (Vita Antioxidant™ and Core Minerals™), USANA® MagneCal D™, and the CellSentials Booster. Each kit also comes with additional energizing tips to get your health back on track.

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.

Kickstart your lifestyle with this easy 5 day (everything in one box) plan!

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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.

Healthy Cove

Nutrition is King: Supporting Healthy Brain Function

healthy brain function

 What You Need To Know

You probably are aware that there is a lot of information on how to support healthy brain function via what you eat.

Well, rest at ease, because this guidebook is intended to do some of the heavy lifting for you.

Here you will find a quick snapshot of the top 5 posts that show up on Google results for boosting brain power with nutrition.

First, I have gone through and done a thematic analysis and compiled the easy-to-read results for you. I’ll explain which foods or nutrients, in particular, were common in each of the posts.

Second, I also provide the list of foods that were only mentioned once in only one of the articles to give a more extensive list of options to make sure you find something valuable to your personal lifestyle.

Finally, I expound on the findings and provide a little spin with the easy list on other items that may aid you in your endeavor to keep your brain healthy.

nutrition is king superfoods

By the end, you will not only be an expert in the ways of eating healthy for powerful brain function, but you will also be given easy tips that you can do today to help you support healthy brain function.

I’m not going to tell you that reading this post will change your life in a very important way, but I will go as far to say that there are tips here that will support the health of your brain quickly and easily.

Some of the tips are so easy you won’t have to think twice about including them in your diet.

Articles Included

The superfoods and nutrients below have been compiled from the following posts. We have deemed these posts as the winners of invaluable information on this topic as chosen by popularity, readability, as well as valuable content.

  1. MindBodyGreen’s 20 Foods To Naturally Increase Your Brain Power by Dr. David Perlmutter
  2. BBC Good Food’s 10 foods to boost your brainpower by Jo Lewin- Associate nutritionist
  3. Forbes’ 12 Best Foods To Boost Brain Power by Jennifer Cohen
  4. Mercola’s Top 7 Foods for Your Brain by Dr. Mercola
  5. Health Connect’s Boost Your Brain Power With Nutrition By Nathan Drendel

Popular Superfoods

The following foods have been compiled from the posts in the order of popularity. Keep in mind, just because a food was mentioned in each post does not make it more or less valuable than another that may be mentioned in only one.

One might say that the more popular options serve as more available or with higher utility, but no such claims are made here. Each food or source from each post had a clear description of its value, and some were backed by additional researched sources.

Walnuts health

1. Nuts

All five articles mentioned some source of vitamin E. Four of the articles mentioned nuts in general. Of those, three of them said walnuts specifically. Vitamin E, as specified in several of the above sources, is an antioxidant that serves the purpose of protecting the cells from oxidative damage. In turn this antioxidant process helps defend the brain from normal cognitive decline.

 

Salmon health

2. Omega-3 Fatty Acids

All five articles mentioned a source of omega-3 fatty acids. Three of the articles specified wild salmon, one said oily fish in general, and one specified chia seeds.

According to these articles, Omega-3 fats serve several purposes for the brain, let alone throughout the body. According to “Boost Your Brain Power With Nutrition”, Omega-3 fatty acids are “critical in brain development in all ages, as they are the building blocks for the brain.”

“10 foods to boost your brainpower” says that omega-3s offer increased levels of DHA and that that fight against normal loss of cognitive function and memory loss.Coconut Oil health

3. Coconut Oil

Three of the articles mentioned coconut oil (20 Foods, Top 7, 12 Best) Without getting too in-depth on the chemistry and anatomy of coconut oil and our brains, our brain needs fuel to function properly. Coconut oil helps provide the good fats “medium-chain triglycerides (MCT)” to help fuel the brain properly.

 

Blueberries health

4. Blueberries

Three of the articles said blueberries (20 Foods, 10 Foods, Top 7). Blueberries are another great source of antioxidants while also being relatively low in fructose.

 

Turmeric health benefits

5. Turmeric

Three said Turmeric (20 Foods, Top 7, 12 Best) Turmeric is a spice often found in curry and supports healthy brain function.

 

Broccoli benefits

6. Broccoli

Three said broccoli (20 Foods, 10 Foods, Top 7). According to the articles, broccoli is a great source of vitamin k and choline, both of which are known to support healthy brain development.

Pumpkin Seeds

7. Pumpkin Seeds

Three said pumpkin seeds (20 Foods, 10 Foods, 12 Best). Pumpkin seeds are a great source of zinc which has shown to help support memory and thinking.

Dark Chocolate Benefits

8. Dark Chocolate

Two said dark chocolate (20 Foods, 12 Best). Dark chocolate is rich in flavonoids supporting normal/healthy blood vessel function and in turn supporting healthy blood flow to the brain aiding in proper cognitive function and memory.

Flavonoids may not be the easiest to get if you aren’t a fan of dark chocolate or do not drink red wine. Because of their vital importance, USANA has a supplement that not only helps you get all the benefits from the flavonoids, but do so with a yummy grape flavored coding. Proflavanol® C100 may be a supplement worth looking into! To learn more, check out the product here.

 

Spinach

9. Spinach

Two said spinach (20 Foods, 12 Best). This is an additional source of many vitamins including vitamin K and some B vitamins acting as “brain-protecting antioxidants.”

 

Exercise

10. Exercise

Two mentioned exercise *even though these are food posts (20 Foods, 10 Foods *as a note afterword). I only include it here on my own synopsis because good, consistent exercise is not only imperative to support healthy brain function, but serves so many invaluable purposes for our overall health. Plus, this is a comprehensive list compiling allthat these articles said, so . . .voila! Here it is.

More Foods For Thought

The rest are foods that were only stated once by only one of the articles, and I will not be going into their value further as much of it overlaps with the sources already mentioned.

If you would like further information on any of the following items, feel free to go right to the source abbreviated on the side of each item. You can find links to each article listed in the “Articles Included” section above.

Olive Oil (20 Foods)

Eggs (20 Foods)

Dandelion Greens (20 Foods)

Kimchi (20 Foods)

Jicmaca (20 Foods)

Avocado (20 Foods)

Red Wine (20 Foods)

Almonds (20 Foods)

Whole Grains (10 Foods)

Tomatoes (10 Foods)

B6, B12, B9 (Folic Acid) Specifically (10 Foods)

Blackcurrant Boost (10 Foods)

Sage (10 Foods)

Anthocyanin (Berries, Eggplant, Red Cabbage) (Boost Your)

Bee Pollen (12 Best)

Bone Broth (12 Best)

Beets (12 Best)

Maca (12 Best)

The Easy List

I hope the above comprehensive list will help you with options and ideas to include in your diet. However, while all of these foods contribute to some function of our brain, there is value in ease and utility. Our lives are busy, and there are many components to our bodies that we need to pay attention.

In the name of simplicity and reality, I’ve provided you with an easier list to digest. Below are three options/ideas that if you only chose to include one of in your daily routine, you’ll be contributing to the health of your brain right now, and may even see noticeable change within a short period of time.

1. The two birds with one stone approach.

Omega-3 fatty acids are a triple threat. Or more for that matter. Choose foods and routines that kill two or more birds with one stone (don’t go kill any birds).

Omega-3 fatty acids aren’t hard to get anymore, even if you don’t like fish. If you’re going to be focusing on your health at all, let alone specifically your brain function, don’t hesitate to start including Omega-3s in your diet now.

Fortunately, the science on the Omega-3 supplement has come a long way. USANA is one supplement provider you may want to look into if you know you’re not getting enough of this important nutrient.

Do you hate fish so much that you’re afraid of even the smell or aftertaste? Me too. This is not a problem with USANA’s product. Infused with lemon oil, all you get when you swallow this easy capsule are light and refreshing lemony reminders you’ve been healthy today. Click here to find out more and get yours today!

BIOMEGA™

2. Keep it simple.

Go nuts for nuts. Again, while there are many foods and nutrients out there that help our brain function properly and support overall health, the more we can accomplish with less, the more likely we’ll be to do it, and to keep doing it.

When in doubt, snack on nuts. Eating nuts will do a variety of good for supporting a healthy brain function as well as supplying the nutrients necessary for healthy cells as they decrease the antioxidants on a cellular level.

If you have some extra time, and you’re not familiar with nutrition on the cellular level, watch this video that goes into the science of having healthy cells. So, you’re interested in learning more or buying USANA’s CellSentials™? Click here for additional information.

CellSentials™

3. Easy help.

Sometimes the best approach when trying to begin a new healthy habit is to take the thought out of it. Be well informed and research your products, but after you’ve done so and committed to the new product, make the action as easy to keep doing as possible.

Sometimes we don’t want to think about what to cook for dinner that will not only be yummy and different, but will also get us the nutrients we lacked in the day.

For tired nights and long days when you tend to just “make what you have,” or heat up leftovers, and so many other times that we simply aren’t getting all of the vitamins, minerals and nutrients we need, adding supplements to your meals are one great answer.

USANA Health Sciences’ product Ginkgo-PS™ is a specific supplement designed to aid healthy brain function.

For centuries, many cultures have supplemented with Ginkgo biloba to promote mental acuity. USANA took the highest quality Ginkgo extract and paired it with phosphatidylserine, another unique ingredient with an important role specific to brain function.

This advanced formula helps you stay on top of your game. From remembering where you parked to focusing on that big project, make brainwaves with Ginkgo-PS. Click here to learn more and get yours today!

Ginkgo-PS™

 

Remember

To recap, there are many nutrients you can take to help support healthy brain function. We believe that when you simplify, you are more likely to add something to your daily routine or diet.

The more likely you are to add a superfood or supplement to your daily routine and diet, the more likely you are to make it a habit. In turn, the more likely you form a healthy habit, the more likely you are to see quick and dramatic changes.

The three steps we’ve provided above are ways you can make a change in your health today and see results quickly. These steps coupled with the compiled list of five top sources on boosting brain power via nutrition gives you a complete guide on changes you can make today to boost your brain power.

If you wish to shop for other supplements please click here

Healthy Cove

Living a Healthy Lifestyle Is Actually Doable

Healthy Lifestyle

Raise your hand if you’ve ever struggled to live a healthy lifestyle. I know I sure have. And it can be super easy to feel down on yourself every time you skip the gym or choose drive-thru for dinner. Especially when you see all the moms on Instagram who post videos of their insane home workouts and healthy meals (while somehow still managing to raise their kiddos), or the pics of the shirtless guys by the pool with abs for days.

If we’re comparing ourselves to some perfect image of health, it’s no wonder living a healthy lifestyle can seem so daunting.

But maybe it doesn’t have to be so hard.

Here are three small ways you can get started living a healthy lifestyle today.

1: Drink Up

If you think about it, water is pretty darn important. About 71 percent of the earth’s surface is covered in water, and about 60 percent of the adult human body is made of water. So if you thought you were a meat suit running around, think again. You’re really more of a mermaid. YAS!

Here’s just a few of the benefits that come from drinking water:

  • Can help increase energy and relieve fatigue
  • Helps to flush out toxins
  • May improve your skin complexion
  • Aids in circulation and digestion
  • Transports nutrients
  • Helps maintain body temperature and absorption

Water You Waiting For?

Make it a habit to keep a water bottle on hand. Keep one at your desk, throw in one your gym bag, and even keep a glass on your kitchen table—wherever you need a visual reminder to drink up.

When was the last time you took a drink of water? (Take a swig now.)

2: Meal Prep

Unfortunately, it’s true what they say—beach bods are made in the kitchen. If your goal is to lose fat or build more muscle, eating healthy meals is a must. Fortunately, this is where meal prepping can be extremely helpful. Not only will this prevent the McDonald’s employees from knowing you on a first-name basis, but you’ll save on money and time as well. Think about it—buying food in bulk to prepare healthy meals will be much cheaper than grabbing fast food every night.

Meal prepping will also help you to stay on track with your healthy eating when you’re busy, because you’ll already be prepared with ready-made meals.

From Apples to Zucchinis

The premise for meal prep is simple. Start by setting aside one day a week for prepping, and decide how many meals you’d like to prepare.

For example, let’s say that every Sunday afternoon, you will prepare dinners to last Monday through Friday. To start, select a few healthy recipes beforehand to try out and be sure to have all your necessary ingredients on hand. From there, cook up enough food and chop enough fruits/veggies to last a week.

Rubbermaid offers a pretty good selection of cool containers that work great for separating your meals into convenient servings so they are good to go whenever you need them. Check out some other comparison brands for convenient storage ideas. You can even use something as simple as plastic baggies to store your veggies or snacks.

Cook Up Some Health

If cooking is your jam and you love trying new recipes, try switching things up each week with different healthy recipes like savory chicken stir fry, zesty taco quinoa casserole, or even grill up some healthy Hawaiian BBQ salmon burgers.

If you prefer an easier, healthy meal each day and you’re okay with something simple like chicken with a baked sweet potato or veggies, it can still taste anything but boring. You can cook up boneless, skinless chicken breasts beforehand, and then season them the day of. Monday could be a nice lemon pepper seasoning, Tuesday, drizzle your chicken in Buffalo sauce, make Wednesday’s chicken Cajun-style, and so on. You can also toss in a delicious and easy-to-make black bean, corn, and quinoa salad for an extra kick of flavor.

Git ’Er Done

Meal prepping is also great for multitasking. Listen to a podcast or audiobook while you cook, or get caught up on your favorite guilty-pleasure show. You can even start a load of laundry while you’re at it.

As an added perk, you’ll probably discover that you are actually cutting down on time spent in the kitchen. After preparing dinners for the week, you may find yourself throwing together the next day’s breakfast or lunch before cleaning up.

It’s a great way to get a lot done all at once.

3: Work Out a New Workout Program

Exercising is another way you can live a healthy lifestyle, and there are tons of great health benefits associated with regular exercise like weight loss and improved boosts in energy.

The great news is, there are so many interesting exercise options to choose from. So if you’re not a fan of running or lifting weights at the gym, don’t do it. Instead, pick something you really like.

Here’s a few fun options:

  • Dancing—Bollywood dancing, ballet, ballroom—the list goes on and on with dance options. You could even take a twerkout or Zumba dance class at a local gym, or play an hour of Just Dance on your Xbox Kinect or Dance Dance Revolution on the Wii.
  • Hiking—If you’re a nature lover, hiking totally counts as exercise. You could also go for long daily walks, try rock-climbing, or get into mountain biking.
  • Yoga—There are so many different kinds of yoga classes you could try. If you don’t mind the heat, go with hot yoga. If you’re an acrobat at heart, give acroyoga a try. There’s even a thing called goat yoga with baby goats and it looks delightful. Seriously, look it up.
  • The Sky’s the Limit—This is your chance to get really creative. Try hula-hooping, jump roping, unicycling, water aerobics, or even larping. (Stands for live action role-playing. Think of mock sword fighting in your favorite Zelda costume.)
  • The C’s—Try a home calisthenics program or CrossFit class at the gym. These kinds of workouts will really build your overall muscular strength and endurance. And okay, it doesn’t start with a “C,” but let’s add karate to the list for kicks.
  • DIY Workout—Invent your own mini workouts to do throughout the day. Take the stairs at work instead of the elevator. Do calf raises when unloading the dishwasher. Get down and plank while waiting for your tea kettle to boil. Do tricep dips on your couch during TV commercials. Taking these little extra steps can definitely add up in a good way.

When All Is Said and Done

When it comes to living a healthy lifestyle, there isn’t a magical cure-all. But by taking little steps such as these every day, you really can improve your overall health, and by doing so, improve the quality of your life.

How do you live a healthy lifestyle? Comment below with your favorite examples.

HealthyLifestyle-Checklist