Medi Fast Diet Plan Review – Pros and Cons

The Medi Fast diet plan is a premium meal replacement diet plan which has been used by over 1 million people. Yet, like any other weight loss program, Medifast has both pros and cons. This article will refer them for you to see and decide whether or not this diet is for you.

MediFast Diet Plan – Pros and Cons

Pros:

1. Medi Fast has different plans for men, women, and diabetics. There are also variations for kosher eaters.

2. This diet has been researched by Johns Hopkins and found to produce impressive weight loss among both men and women.

3. Medifast is approved by many doctors.

4. This program has been used for over 20 years by over 1 million people so it has a long and proven track record.

5. With Medi Fast you can lose 2-5 pounds each week.

6. The diet is affordable

7. Medi Fast diet plan offers a great variety of food items and meal replacement items to choose from so you will not find the menu boring at all.

8. The meal replacement items are delivered to your house so the diet is very convenient.

Cons:

1. The diet is a low calorie program which takes some getting used to.

2. It takes a while to get used to eating regular foods instead of the meal replacement items on which the diet is based after you lose all the weight that you want.

3. You will need to wait for the meal replacement to be delivered by mail. This does not take long, but 2-3 days wait is something you need to be aware of.

Overall, MediFast has worked for a lot of people and helped them to lose a lot weight.

How Chefs Have Become The New Rock Stars

Not that long ago "celebrity chef" mean Julia Child or "Chef" from South Park. The temperamental Swedish Chef from The Muppets is a perfect example of how we used to perceived a talented chef. Some still do shout and yell but for the most part today's TV chefs have become funny and likeable. Some are becoming household names by branching out to host game shows and afternoon talk shows. Others combine talent and a few catch phrases to build an empire.

Open kitchens are allowing chefs to be center stage and have more of a relationship with their customers. Combine this with the tattoos, flashy hair and jewelry, and you can trunk these guys are rock stars. Instead of music, they rock out insane dishes with ingredients you have to Google.

This was the argument given to me by life long friend, Darrin "Big B" Beni, when he approached my brother and I to help him launch a graphic chef coat line. This former front man of Pavement recording artist LUNGS and professional chef for over 20 years had a convincing point. "I saw an emerging culture that shared a great appreciation of creative foods, music, art, and tattoos," said Beni. "Chefs are now visible with flashy hair and all tatted up but they still wear the same white coat? Chefs have fans and publicists now!". I was not prepared for how true his statements were. When introduced to this new culture, it blew me away that not only did people brag about meeting these chefs but that others could give you their whole bio and their favorite dishes by these guys. How long before kids are taping celebrity chef posters on their wall?

So what does a coat for a rocked out chef look like? The graphics are inspired by food, music, and pop culture and the placement of the designs mimic where a tattoo would be on the body. There are different themes including a Day of the Dead Skull, Japanese Koi fish and even a Pig Cut Butcher's Diagram for the pork lover. Diced coats are becoming a diverse garment, replacing the apron for home dinner parties and tailgating. It's even being worn as club wear, yes people are wearing them to clubs. Devil's Beat Down, a California based hard core metal band has performed on stage wearing matching Diced coats. Just like the Kiss Army and Misfits Fiend Club, Diced has their own fan club dubbed "The Diced Republic". No tour dates but you do receive emails containing a calendar of food and drink events, plus other relevant information.

Just like "metal head" and "punk rocker" refer to a group who share the same passion, "Foodie" is a term that refers to someone who hobby is pursuing new food experiences. While most aficionados hate the term, it seems to have stuck. However you refer to this culture, they have cause the food industry to stretch their imaginations and push the limits of food science. The travel industry is targeting this culture with what is know now as "Food Tourism". Find the local markets and restaurants or visit wine and beer events at far away places. The World Food Travel Association is a great resource with tons of information for such trips. Their website offers webinars, live seminars, handbooks and anything else you would need for a tasty vacation.

As with music there are food trends. Even if you are not in the know, you would've realized the burger trend. What came first the bacon and blue cheese or the fried egg? It does not matter, the amazing combos that came after has made burgers exciting again. FYI, if you hear someone say "blondies are the new brownies", think food not hair trends.

Today's chefs are expected to be artists using edibles as their medium. A diner wants more than just food, they want an experience to share with family and friends. It really is not a new concept, food has always been more than nutrition.

"All change in America begins at the dinner table". -Ronald Reagan

Low Carb Diets Vs Low Fat Diets – An In-Depth Comparison of the Pros and Cons

Thanks to increasing instances of people in developed western nations falling prey to obesity, diets like low fat diets and low carb diets have become very popular. But before selecting any particular type of diet you need to do a comparative study of low carb diets vs. low fat diets and acquaintance yourself with the pros and cons of each.

Low fat diet

This type of diet tries to eliminate all sorts of fatty food and food items rich in fat that may lead to obesity like elimination of butter, cream, dairy products, peanut butter, nuts, junk food, oily fatty calorie laden food etc.

Advantages

It definitely promotes weight loss.
It does not increase insulin content.
The intake of calorie is lowered.
Cholesterol levels are brought down.
Bad fats are eliminated.

It minimizes the risk of obesity related diseases like heart diseases, cardiac arrest, strokes, blockage of vessels etc.

Makes the skin smooth, oil free and flawless and prevails acne and pimples.
It also diminishes the mortality rate due to sudden heart diseases.

Leads to easy digestion.

Disadvantages

Restricting intake of calorie to 10% fat content can be very difficult.
It dries out the skin completely, makes it chapped, rough and wrinkled quickly and the skin also loses all natural glow.

Experts' verdict

In a low carb diets vs. low fat diets match, the latter tends to create less impact than the former.

Low carb diet

It involves reducing or cutting out the intake of food items rich in carbohydrates and starch and is recommended for people who are obese or have contracted hyper insulinemia.

Pros

The blood pressure is lowered.

The lipid profile of the blood is improved leading to low cholesterol levels.
It lowers the insulin.

The blood sugar levels are also stabilized so making it an ideal diet for diabetics.

It triggers weight loss in a sustained manner.

Cons

Most varieties of fruits are cut out from this diet so increasing chances of nutrition deficiency.

Regular mineral and vitamin supplements have to be taken to replenish the lack of nutrition.

Fiber supplements have to be taken as well to compensate for the loss of dietary fiber.

There are various long term and short term side effects like bad breath, constipation, hair loss, cramps, fatigue, lethargy, lack of physical and mental energy, reduced thinking, reasoning, analytical abilities, slow working of the brain, dizziness etc.

So both have their pros and cons but in a low carb diets vs. low fat diets comparison, the former has always triggered more weight loss than the latter.

What is an Aphrodisiac Food?

Gently poached shrimp in red curry over grains of fragrant, jasmine rice. Freshly shucked oysters served ocean-side with a glass of golden Sauternes. The meat of crushed cottage pods steeped with flecks of chile and sweetened by sugar cane. Aphrodisiac foods have been celebrated by the greatest cultures in recorded history. Today, modern science is provoking the nutritional validity of foods historically regarded as aphrodisiac. So why does the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) say there is no such thing as a culinary aphrodisiac?

The FDA not just dispels a belief but also in fact warns consumers against natural aphrodisiacs, maintaining that no over-the-counter product works to treat problems with sexual function. Of course, the FDA is trying to protect consumers from products like the manufactured packages labeled "Spanish Fly," sold at the checkout counters of seedy convenience stores in Chatsworth, California (heart of the American porn industry). But it also offers to define aphrodisiacs rather narrowly as products that only only those directly improving sexual hormone levels.

It is true that until recent years, no controlled studies discovered even the hint of such a culinary Viagra, directly impacting sexual hormones. However, a study completed in 2005 by a group of Italian and American scientists inadvertently discovered that a rare amino acid raised sexual hormone levels in rats. The study was investigating the amino acids of a Mediterranean variety of mussels and the sexual health discovery was simply a sideline of the group's true goals. So, unfortunately, no follow-up studies have endeavored to harness the Viagra-like potential of not just mussels but all bi-valves, (including oysters and clams), containing this miracle amino. However these initial finds, without a doubt, shoot a few holes in the FDA's story.

After the FDA's cold shoulder toward the world's most "exciting" foods, people around the world continue to define culinary delights as aphrodisiacs. Some foods earn their title for their ability to produce an immediate physiological effect on the body. Chile peppers, for instance, have been used as aphrodisiacs throughout the Americas and Asia for centers for their ability to raise body temperature and bring a blush to the cheeks similar to a sexual flush. Ginger, another warm spice, can make the eater's tongue tingle with anticipation and lips plump to proportions that could meet any Angelina Jolie fantasy.

Alcohol is also considered aphrodisiac for its physiological effects. We all know what happens when the first sips of a drink hit the blood stream and the world becomes a warm and glowing place. Champagne is a particularly effective aphrodisiac. The delicious "pop" of a cork and the tickling of bubbles on the nose make the drink much more than an inhibitory assistant. Life becomes a celebration with Champagne in the glass. The teasing idea in the back of the mind that the entire bottle really must be drunk right away less it lose its cheerful effervescence brings to the moment an air of indulgence. But, of course, the aphrodisiac of alcohol must be administered in careful doses. As Shakespeare warned of the temptation of the bottle, 'It increases the desire, but it takes away the performance.'

Thanks to the work of two rather quirky figures in the world of science, we now know that the mere scents of some foods can evoke sexual arousal. In the late 1990's, Dr. Alan Hirsch of the Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation in Chicago completed a study in which food aromas caused sexual arousal in subjects in both waking and sleeping states. The most successful scent tested in the study to temptation men was a combination of pumpkin pie spice and lavender. For women, it was cucumbers and Good and Plenty sweets. Other scents, such as glazed donut, butted popcorn and vanilla also offered arousing results.

In a series of slightly less formal studies, Dr. Max Lake, an MD and vintner from Australia's Hunter Valley, discovered similarities between the scents of certain foods and the aromas of human pheromones. In his book Scents and Sensuality, Dr. Lake describes the aromas of some Blanc de Blanc Champagnes as well as ripe cheeses as being startlingly similar to female pheromones. He also discusses the aromatic similarity between truffles and the male pheromone androstanone. (Ever stop to ponder why truffle hunters employ female pigs? Those randy girls are after the scent of androstanone!)

Other foods are considered aphrodisiac for their appearance. This, I believe, is the weakest definer for declaring a food aphrodisiac. For example, I've heard a European belief from a previous century that strawberries are aphrodisiac for their resemblance to a woman's nipples. This rumor was clearly started during a time period in which nudity was frowned upon, because I've looked in the mirror and can assure you that there is absolutely no resemblance.

The same goes for phallic foods. I was under the impression that size matters, so why would any man want to compare his anatomy to a stalk of asparagus?

It is my belief that foods with nutritional content essential for sexual health were, in previous centuries, often explained by appearance since the science of the times did not allow for nutritional analysis. Celery, for example, another one of those rather thin phallic foods, contains natural plant estrogens.

In fact, if you look at the nutritional makeup of most foods celebrated as aphrodisiacs through the course of history, you will find ingredients rich with vitamins and nutrients essential to a healthy libido. We now know that oysters, the most clichéd of all aphrodisiac foods, contain that aforementioned amino acid promoting to raise sexual hormone levels to new heights. But they are also an excellent and easily digestible source of zinc, an ingredient that promotes blood flow to the body's every region.

Oysters are not the only food to get your blood pumping. Almonds, eggs, pumpkin seeds and shrimp are also aphrodisiac foods serving up your daily dose of zinc. Other nutrients that work to embellish your sexual self include – but are not limited to – vitamin C, iodine, omega 3's and magnesium.

Many ingredients probably became known as aphrodisiacs because of their ability to provide sustained energy. Lean proteins like wild boar, fish and fowl give the body energy for an all night pas de deux. Foods with natural sugars and caffeine can give the body a surge of energy when it is needed most. This explains the aphrodisiac reputation of decidedly un-sexy ingredients like yams and beets, as well as that of some of the food world's sexiest players. Imagine honey drizzled across warm flesh or fragile coffee served in bed on a cold morning, which, I promise you, tends to rouse more than a lover's tousled head.

As we learn more about brain chemistry and its impact on the games of love, we will likely discover more reasons to toss out the prescription pad and haul out the grocery list. We now know that certain foods can trigger chemical reactions in the brain to send a flood of happy hormones through the body. (Yes, I speak of the legend of chocolate- unfortunately, you would have to eat a diabetic coma-inducing quantity of chocolate in one sitting in order to ingest enough of the needed compounds. Sad, but true). As more and more secrets of the brain are unlocked through the miracles of modern science, it is very likely that we will discover a dazzling array of foods with abilities to balance mood, invoke romance and trigger sexual desire.

In the meantime, however, we must swallow the bitter pill of the FDA and, at least from a marketing perspective, deny foods their aphrodisiac allure. I look forward to the day when the American government comes to a less simple minded understanding of the relationship between food and romance. After all, would not you rather sit down to a dazzling dinner than pop a blue pellet?

That being said, I believe there is more to the success of aphrodisiacs in romantic relationships than the administration of foods from a prescription checklist. For a romantic meal to achieve the desired results, the experience itself must be an act of pleasure. When planning a night of culinary temptations, I recommend carefully contemplating not just a menu of aphrodisiac ingredients but elements of indulgence, surprise and even downright daring. After all, as Dr. Ruth Westheimer famously quipped, "The most important sex organ lies between the ears."

This article is reprinted from EatSomethingSexy.com.

Reasons Why Your Diet Is Causing Your High Blood Pressure

Salt gets the most blame for causing high blood pressure, but it actually is not what comes out of the salt shaker that's the problem. In fact, it is one of many factors that create the situation, and a lot of it is dietary.

Sodium : Salt is a combination of two chemicals, sodium and chloride. This can make things confusing, especially when looking at prepared foods. The label does not say salt; it says sodium.

There is even more confusion when you start looking at studies. The theory that sodium increases blood pressure has to do with it causing more water in the blood stream. There are some studies that suggest that's true. There are also studies that suggest it is not. This is a discussion best held with your doctor.

Dehydration : It may seem odd that dehydration would have any effect on hypertension, but it does. Small capillaries are closed off and this raises the pressure on the major blood vessels. This increases the numbers and can become deadly.

Caffeine : While we do not know why caffeine spikes pressure levels we do know that it does. This is true even for the healthy. Repeated exposure to caffeine can make it a real problem over time.

Things that Help : What we eat or drink can have a positive effect. Garlic is a good example. While it's best taken raw, garlic supplements are more palatable. You will still have the odor problems garlic produces, but at least it will not burn your mouth and stomach.

Maintenance hydration is very important. Water is great most of the time, but if it is extremely hot and / or you are exercising vigorously you may need a sport's drink. These maintain electrolytes, another problem that dehydration can cause.

Talk to the Doctor : If you have hypertensive or suspect you do, talk to your doctor about the things you can do to keep your numbers in the right range. There may be other suggestions, and you may need medication to help.

5 Unusually Fast Fat Loss Tips

TIP 1: EXERCISE EFFICIENCY

The idea here is that we're all very busy, and I do not have time to spend hours at the gym or workout nearly every day of the week. I know most people are in the same boat.

So what is needed is an exercise routine that can be performed infrequently and takes very little time, but still gives you great results …

… now the only way to do this is to use a form of exercise that produces fat loss in the time that you're not working out.

Most popular forms of exercise provide most of their calorie and fat burning during the exercise … but this is not efficient because we can only exercise so much … even the aerobic and cardio fanatics out there can only stand say 5-10 hours a week of exercise.

So with 24 hours a day times 7 days, that gives us 168 hours in a week … so even working out 5-10 hours a week still leaves us with 160 or more hours that we will not be working out …

… it is these 160 hours we should be focusing on if we want maximum fat loss in minimum time …

… and when you can do that, now you've got exercise efficiency. So the idea is to get the most fat burning out of those 160+ hours that you're not working out …

… and the best way to do it that I've found is by using a very high level of intensity combined with resistance training exercises performed in fairly rapid succession.

This type of exercise will burn fat for up to 2-3 days after the workout is over, so you can see why just 2-3 sessions a week of this type of exercise can double or even triple the amount of fat loss that can occur with typical type of exercise in the so called "fat burning zone".

TIP 2: FOCUS ON MICRONUTRIENTS FIRST

Perhaps the most important tip I can give anyone trying to get and stay lean is to look at food from a micronutrient standpoint.

This is not something you'll hear from most nutrition experts, in fact they'll tell you just the opposite, to look at your food from a macronutrient view (protein, carbs, fats) …

… this is what most people end up doing, and it is still important for fat loss, but the big turning point in my personal fat loss journey happened when I started to focus on eating most of my calories from foods that are super loaded with nutrients instead of stressing out over my protein, fat, and carb ratios.

The foods I'm talking about are vegetables, fruits, beans, legumes, nuts, seeds.

Now do not mistake this for a vegetarian or vegan diet, that's not what I'm talking about, but a diet that supplies the body with the nutrients it requires to burn fat optimally.

Now, you'll note that I did not include lean animal meats on this list. Well, that doesnt mean these foods will not help you burn fat, they will, but what I'm saying is you need to take your focus off of the whole protein first mindset and instead go with a "nutrient first" mindset .

I was raised, as I'm sure a lot of people are, that any good meal needs to start with a big portion of beef or poultry, and that the nutrient rich foods (like vegetables, fruits, beans, etc.) are a small part of that meal, if at all.

I'm saying you have to flip that equation entirely and that most of your meal should be based in the nutrient loaded foods, with a smaller bit of the animal proteins.

The fact is that these foods have the most nutrients, and when you give your body the required nutrients without overloading it with foods that have little nutrients, fat loss has become so much easier because the hunger and cravings that plague dieters almost disappear.

TIP 3: STOP DOING SITUPS AND USING ABS GIZMOS TO LOSE STOMACH FLAB!

OK, so this is a big one because six pack abs are like a status symbol these days on whether or not you're lean.

I mean back in the 70s and 80s, it was enough just to have a flat stomach, but now it's all about the six pack … for whatever reason.

It probably has more to do with the fact that people are fatter than ever and things like six pack abs are becoming more rare and of course they are that much more desirable because of it.

So, a lot of people are still mystified by the spot reducing myth that you can do exercise a specific area of ​​the body and create localized fat loss.

I should know because I hammer my newsletter subscribers with this myth several times, but I still get a question after question about which abs or belly exercises or gut blaster 3000 will get them a set of six pack abs!

Look, you really can not lose fat from one area of ​​your body specifically …

… the only way you can lose belly fat, thigh fat, butt fat or any other fat is by lowering your overall body fat percentage. In other words, losing overall body fat.

The reason you have problem areas or body parts is because you simply have more fat cells stored in that area genetically.

And we can not lose these fat cells, we are stuck with them without we resort to surgery, but we can shrink them, and that's what happens when we lose fat. We shrink the fat cells.

So the key here is forgetting about all those abs specific exercises for a while and instead focus on lowering your overall body fat percentage by creating a calorie deficiency through the right diet strategies and adding lean muscle to your body.

Truth be told, a good set of barbell squats to muscular failure done a couple times a week will do more for losing belly fat and getting six pack abs than 1000 crunches a week because the amount of calories and fat that will be burned from the squats will far outweigh those crunches.

Yeah, you'll need some abs specific exercises to build the abdominal muscles, but no one will see them if they're covered up by layers of body fat.

TIP 4: DO NOT JUDGE YOUR FAT LOSS PROGRESS ON A SCALE

Alright another huge mistake people make when determining how successful their fat loss program. First off, we're talking about fat loss here, not weight loss.

Weight loss is the predominant term, unfortunately, because that's what we are taught at an early age.

But when it comes to losing actual body fat, we have to look at our body composition, not how much we weigh on the scale, but how much of our body is fat weight.

This is really the only way to know if you're losing fat or just losing water weight or muscle, which is very common on most crash or fad diets …

… people will end up losing a few pounds really fast and get excit, but they do not look much better in the mirror!

I mean they could look better in clothes because water loss and muscle loss will make you look smaller in clothes sometimes, but when the clothes come off …

… yikes!

This is the skinny-fat look that a lot of people have … they have high body fat percentages, but because of a small bone structure they look acceptable to people while in clothes.

I know nobody wants to look like that, which is why body fat percentage must be the key measure for fat loss.

OK, another reason we can not rely on the scale is because of muscle mass …

… if we're doing this right, our exercise is going to be geared toward gaining lean muscle as this is the best way to create a calorie deficit almost immediately.

Especially as we age because our bodies naturally lose muscle mass every year once we hit our mid 30s or so … by the way that's the main reason so many people who were in good shape in their 20s and 30s wake up in their 40s 20 -30 pounds of fat heavier.

So if you're measuring your progress by the scale and you gain 5 pounds of muscle, the scale could show no fat loss or even a small gain because muscle weighs more than fat …

… it's more dense and takes up less space. This can cause you to freak out and think your efforts are causing weight gain when in reality your creating the perfect environment for 24 hour a day fat burning.

So, easy ways to track your bf% are with a skinfold caliper, which you can find online, some of those body fat scales or hand grippers (although there are some tricks to using those correctly).

I actually have a body fat percentage analyzer available for my newsletter subscribers for free which you can get on my website … this is a great little tool and it's there for anyone who wants to accurately track your fat loss.

So that's the idea here … track your body fat percentage, not just your bodyweight! It's fat loss, not weight loss we're after.

TIP 5: KNOW YOUR FAT LOSS NUMBERS

I'm talking about keeping score and knowing your numbers here …

… if you do not know the numbers, you have little chance of success in fat loss and fitness.

Just like anything else in life, if you're not tracking what works and what does not work, you'll be using a shotgun approach that will take much longer and not work as well as an approach that includes tracking.

This is especially important in relation to your exercise and fat loss and fitness progress. Let's look at the business world for a moment. In any business, at the end of the day, results are measured by revenue, or the money that was made.

If the business owner does not know the numbers, they will not know if they've made any money. And that they literally have no business! It's crazy and pretty simple, but the most powerful metric a business owner can track.

I'm a big NBA basketball fan, but do you think I'd enjoy watching my favorite team if they did not keep score? Of course not!

If they do not keep score, we do not know who's winning, and then there is no "game" to win or lose. They have to know their numbers to know who wins and who loses.

Again, strikingly simple, but the fact is that most people do not track their exercise routines at all. How do they know if they're winning or losing the fat loss game?

In fat loss and fitness it's all about monitoring a few key numbers, primarily strength gains, inches in your body part measurements, and body fat percentage.

If you do not know these numbers from week to week, month to month, you'll have a tough time judging your progress … and then you'll be guessing yourself, the methods you're using and have little change of succeeding.

This is also important because with any type of exercise or diet plan, you'll need to make slight adjustments as you progress, and how the heck are you going to do that if you do not know what or when to adjust?

So recording your progress on a weekly and month basis is key to getting that lean and fit body you desire … and if you're not doing it, you're using the shotgun approach: just spraying bullets and hoping you hit something.

This is a big reason people give up on their programs …

… not measuring their progress accurately. When you do this right, it can also give you that positive reinforcement to work even hard towards your goals.

Once you sniff something that actually is working, I do not know about you, but I'll do everything I can do magnify that effect for as long as I can.

So, bottom line, make sure to keep accurate records of your workouts and your progress. Just like in any business or in sports, you will not know if you're winning if you do not keep score.

Nutrition – It's What's Eating You That Counts

"It's not what you eat, it's what's eating you that counts."

Before we talk about food, the most important nutrients we put in our bodies are air and water. Forget about air if you live in Los Angeles, or now Kona, it's bad there. Also pure tap water is now next to impossible to find in most cities. Even in beautiful Hawaii most people drink purified or filtrated water. Our bodies being a high percentage of water (about 75%) it becomes imperative to not drink polluted or chlorinated water. By adding chlorine in water we are trying to purify it, maybe from some bacteria, but we do not take out any of the toxic chemicals that end up in our water source. Beside, chlorine has been linked with heart disease and who knows how long term use may affect our health. Boiling water only kills some bacteria, it makes more sense to get a good water filter, because much of the bottled water is questionable. Well there is smart water, there are new water products in the market with treated water, usually it has been ionized, or chemically altered, the best one I know is Angel FIre water, from New Mexico, Hi guys.

FAT

We are all aware of the fat revolution; Battle of the Bulge. Even my fifteen year old
daughter reads all the label to see how much fat or other junk is in the products we
buy. She has now decided to be a vegan, and so I have the opportunity to teach and
remember why I became a vegitary once myself.

We know that it's eating the wrong kind of fat that can hurt the immune system and
put that extra fat on our body. For many years we thought that it leads to heart
disease as well. There is some new research that heart disease is more linked to
stress than to fat consumption. Well maybe moderate amounts of fat, are ok. Most
doctors are still telling us to cut down fat anyway, both the scheduled (meats and
milk products) as well as other fats and Polyunsaturated (oils) fats.

Saturated fats are; chicken, beef, lamb, pork, duck and milk products. You want to
be able to reduce these high-fat foods and modify your favorite recipes. Especially if
you eat them more than three times a month. A good number is to keep fat at about
15 or 20% of your diet (Good fats are better).

Most people are making an effort to cut saturated fat in their diets by reducing the
eating of meat, taking the skin off chicken, whole milk is almost eliminated, most
people that drink milk are using 2%, I recommend cutting out dairy products all
together and going into soy, or almond milk. Cut down on butter, never use
margarine, vegetable shortening, and all products made with tropical oils or
partially hydrogenated oils, these are not any good for human consumption. Read
the labels they are in lot's of stuff you buy.

Polyunsaturated oils are not that good for us either but less harmful they are;
safflower, sunflower, corn, soy, but especially avoid cottonseed oil, it's downright
toxic. These oils are unstable and many experts feel they react with oxygen and can
damage DNA and cell membranes. Especially hazardous are the solid vegetable
shortening, butter is better than margarine, but we should try to eliminate these
from the diet for optimal health. Hydrogenated oils are in lots of products as well,
these are toxic to our cardiovascular system and should be eliminated as well.

Unsaturated fatty acids when heated form TFA's or Trans-Fatty-Acids. Many doctors
believe this damages the body at the hormonal level as well as our natural immune
system.

I have always loved olive oil as my oil of choice and it turns out that
monounsaturated oils are the best for the body; that includes virgin olive oil, canola,
peanut and avocado. These oils can help reduce the bad cholesterol in the body as
well. Olive oil being the best and it's best use is raw, in salad dressings, or to dip
your bread into. Another good fat we can increase the consumption of is Omega 3
(fatty acid) by eating the appropriate fish such as; Tuna (Yellow or blue fin),
sardines, mackerel, herring and salmon, salmon having the most oil. Other great
sources which many people are taking now are hemp or flax oil, or flax meal, a
good source I prefer to get the seeds and powder them as oils can go rancid.

CARBOHYDRATES

We have heard all these theories of weight loss, stop carbos they are the enemy, eat
all proteins, the blood type diet, eat less, eat more, it's confusing. It sees every
Few years we see a new diet for weight loss. I personally have tried many diets, not
for losing weight but to experience them first hand. Carbo's are still a great food
for clean burning fuel in the body and especially good for athletes. Carbos are only
fattening if you're not burning enough calories, as we know that fat and carbos burn
clean. It's only protein that does not burn clean, it actually creates toxic residue, see
below. For athletes to get the benefits from carbo-loading you need to carbo-starve
for three days first, then carbo-load for three days before a competition.

PROTEIN

We need protein to grow, maintain and repair our tissues. Very few people actually
do not eat enough protein, quite the contrary, most people in modern society eat too
much protein. Because of the complex molecules, protein is harder to digest. The
essential nutrients can not be duplicated by the body nor found in other foods these
key components are the amino acids (see next article).

Most people still rely on animal products for protein such as: meat, chicken, fish,
and milk or it's products. These however are not as good an energy source for the
body. Primarily because it's hard to digest and worse it actually creates toxic
residual, in the form of nitrogen, which can irritate the immune system. Also another
waste product called ammonia, a very toxic substance. Because it is so toxic, the
body protects itself by turning the ammonia into urea, which is then transported to the
kidneys and excreted. Balance is the key, to get enough protein so that your body
has enough for repair and growth, but not so much that it's overburdened with
trying to eliminate the excess and overworking the digestive system. All this extra
effort can lead to your body to actually having less energy, more toxins and overall
a weaker system.

Some good vegetable sources of protein are; beans, grains, seeds and some nuts at
times spouts can give amino acids or even a product called Dr. Braggs Amino acids.
The difference between animal and vegetable sources is that meat is very
concentrated, whereas the vegetable sources have lots of edible starch and fiber.
Another important component for a well functioning digestive system, fiber is one
of the things too much meat eating is lacking. We need that roughage for a better
functioning colon.

How much protein does the body need? We have all heard many approaches to this
and if we take the information from the Blood Type Diet what type of protein you eat
is also important. Most doctors say from 4 to 6 ounces a day is plenty. Some
cultures do fine on less. For some diabetics they recommend 4 ounces per meal. I
think you should feel it out for yourself. Some vegetarians say you do not need
animal protein at all. If you are a vegetarian and your body works great, well then
great. However I was a vegetarian for fifteen years, now I eat some fish and
occasionally organic, buffalo or eggs you just have to feel it out I sometimes saw
some very unhealthy vegetarians so you need some information. There is also
information that says that you can not get all the amino acids from vegetable sources. I
do not really know myself for sure, but again, there is lots of confusion on that
subject. Once again the key is try something and see how you feel. One meal a day
with protein seems to be the recommendation, according to most. They key for
most bodies is to increase vegetable and grain take and reduce animal protein.

Grains and beans are a great source of fiber and protein. It's always a good idea to
get organic foods, and hormone free meats, what they put in their feed and inject
into them these days is scarry.

Nuts and seeds, like almonds and sunflower seeds, are great sources of vegetable
protein, they do have some fat (mostly polyunsaturated) so moderation is still
important. My yoga teacher once said only eat a handful of nuts or seeds a day. In
fact there is a theory that you should always eat only when hungry as well as eat
less and more often. Once again try some of these on your own body, and see how
you feel.

Soybeans have the most protein as well as significant amounts of polyunsaturated
fat. Soy protein is not only made into tofu, but all kinds of products. I personally
feel we overdid the soy bean revolution. Also make sure you get organic. Everyone
replaced meat with tofu when we where vegetarians. I did not think it was that great
of a food not having much roughage and being high in fat. Many people feel it's a
great source of protein, there is cheese, tempeh, yogurt, milk, wieners, burgers and
lunch meats made from soy now. Most health food stores carry these products.
There may be great health benefits to soy that is just coming to light (I quote Dr.
Weil).
"Two of the best known soy phytoestrogens -genistein and daidzein-are now being
explored for their ability to moderate human hormonal imbalances. "

Eggs are a good source of protein, just do not overeat them either. Get fertile natural
range fed chickens that scratch on the earth to get their minerals, and no hormones
please. Avoid raw eggs, there is salmonella in them quite often. Eat eggs once or
two a week, if you are going to eat them, not daily.

To summarize eat less protein. Begin to replace animal protein in the diet with fish,
vegetable and soy products. Eat more vegetables and create meals that have smaller
servings of animal proteins. Eat more whole grains, legumes and products made
from whole grains the best bread are sprouted bread, like bible bread, because in
sprouting the seeds they become more digestible and less allergic. Eat more fruit,
yogurt and raw juices. Reduce your calorie intake by eliminating high-fat foods,
canned sodas are slow death, the diet kind the worse. Variety is very important,
eating the same foods all the time will not give you the different nutrients a varied
diet can give.

Do not use polyunsaturated vegetable oils for cooking. Use only good quality olive
oil. Cut out cotton seed oil, palm oils, margarine, vegetable shortening, or partially
hydrogenated oils (trans-fatty acids). Read the labels, they put some of this stuff in
all kinds of foods, keep it simple and natural.

Eat more omega-3 fatty acids by eating the right fish (Salmon and Tuna) and by
adding hemp seeds or flax seeds to your diet.

Much of this information is available available in most books on nutrition, just
remember do not be fanatical, it's more important to enjoy life and realize we have
ate junk food for many years. Getting off that is difficult, take it easy, do not shock
yourself and consult with your doctor. The body can do wonders with poor eating
and bad food, but only so long.

VITAMINS

Taking vitamins is another controversial subject, though most doctors now
recommend vitamins, and the best are the natural source vitamins. One key is
taking them at the right time and with the right foods. To most experts vitamins are
our insurance program as well as our protection from toxins, and heavy metals, as
well as most vegetables now have low nutrient level due to spraying, chemical
fertilizers and high tech. breeding systems. If you can find liquid, or sublingual
vitamins that are said to be the best, see Dr. Robert Young's (Ph Miracle) vitamins
and supper greens.

A real simple vitamin program recommended by Dr. Weil (buy his book "Spontaneous
Healing ").

At breakfast: Take I, 000-2,000 milligrams of vitamin C and 25,000 IU of natural
beta carotene.

At lunch: Take 400-800 IU of natural vitamin E and 200-300 micrograms of
selenium.

At dinner: Take 1,000-2,000 milligrams of vitamin C.

At bedtime take another 1,000 to 2,000 milligrams of vitamin C

To summarize what to do about toxins in foods:

Reduce the percentage of processed foods in your diet and to choose only products
made without artificial additives. Cut down the consumption of meat products and
buy products certified to be free of drugs and hormones. Especially poultry, they are
loaded with toxins, growth hormones and antibiotics.

Reduce eating foods known to contain natural toxins, such as black pepper, celery,
alfalfa sprouts, peanuts and some commercial mushrooms.

Eat a varied diet rather than eating the same foods every week.

Wash and peel fruits and vegetables especially if they are not organically grown.
Better yet buy organic when you can.

Attempt to buy only organically produced apples, peaches, grapes, raisins, oranges,
strawberries, lettuce, celery, carrots, corn, green beans, soy beans, potatoes and
wheat flour. These products tend to be sprayed worse than the rest of the foods and
because they are grown in large numbers are usually also chemically fertilized.

Grow a small garden, sprout seeds or look for sources of local organic produce
farmers markets are everywhere now. A lot more vegetables are available in health
food stores and even some major chains, now carry organic foods.

Stop eating fast and deep fried, processed foods, preservatives, chemical dyes and
artificial sweeteners.

DRUGS, & COSMETICS

Remember what you put on your body is absorbed into your skin. Shampoos, make-
up, creams and all the other drugs we take can have long term detrimental side
affects to our health. This includes prescription as well as illegal drugs. Know what
you are taking or putting on your skin.

Most doctors use drugs to treat disease, it's all well and good and we are lucky to
have some of these drugs. However, it's important to be well informed of any drug
you are taking as well as to look at the alternatives; such as herbs, Chinese
medicine as well as naturapathy, or homeopathy. One of the widest use of drugs is
in athletics, steroid use is very dangerous and there is enough research out that
proves this.

It's easy to get confused with so much information on nutrition, my intention is to
make the reader aware of substances that can help you heal and resist the effects of
toxins, stress, and aging in your body. As well as help you feel, perform better and
improve the quality of your life. There is lots of to learn and we are discovering more
powerful nutrients to help us every day. One of the most revolutionary products out
is deer antler extract or Igf1 which is a pre-cursor to HGH (Human Growth
Hormone) which I do not recommend without a professional doctor treating you.
Deer antler not new, the Chinese have been using it for thousands of years as a
tonic. It's sexual powers are just one facet, it actually contains all the amino acids,
as well as promoting the human growth hormone (HGH) which can get our
metabolism on track again. It's good for increasing muscle mass, reducing fat,
building new cell tissue, giving a boost to our immune system, natural anti-
inflammatory, good for arthritis and much, much more.

Being Mexican I have always ate lots of onions, chiles and garlic. Eating more
garlic, onions and ginger; not only help the food taste better, the benefits; like
lower cholesterol and blood pressure, blood clotting, antioxidants, aiding
digestion are well known. There are more benefits coming out every day. We have
not done much research with ginger in the states, but it is a great tonic as well and
used very extensively in the Asian cooking.

If you drink coffee eat something with it, it's very damaging on an empty stomach. It
can make your adrenals work extra. You can buy organic as well and on some days,
switch to green tea, or herbal teas.

If you have been exposed to toxins or feel you have a high toxic overload. Take milk
thistle to help your body recover, as well as the recommended vitamin program of Dr.
Weil.

If you are generally weak or lacking energy, or you catch all the bugs that come
around. Try a cleansing diet, work out, walk more, or see a specialist and find out
why you have low energy. Experiment with Siberian ginseng, Dong Quai or
cordyceps, change your diet. Give your body a break, try a fast by eating only raw
foods one day a week, come off gently with soup. Move into raw juice fast, or the
master cleanser diet. Read some books, experiment with your body. Not all bodies
are the same we each must find the perfect eating system for our needs.

This is all very simple and can be implemented into your lifestyle very easy, it just
takes desire, remember do not get fanatical and go easy. Your body will go into shock
if you jump into fast too fast. Consult with your doctor, get informed have fun.

This is not an article to prescribe or diagnose any disease. Eating is the natural way
to take good care of your body. Much of this information is suggested by Dr.
Andrew Weil (buy his book "Spontaneous Healing") and John MacDougal MD. and not
intended as medical advice.

One of Dr. Weils' best sayings is "Do not seek help from a conventional doctor for a
condition that conventional medicine can not treat, and do not rely on an alternative
provider for a condition that conventional medicine can manage well ".

As my good friend Dr. Bruce Parker says, "It's not what you eat, but what's eating
you that counts ".

For more information or other articles see http://www.molinamassage.com

Chocolate – Personal Essay

Eating chocolate can be one of the most pleasurable things in the world if you are in the right place, at the right time, with the right people, and most of the time, with your favorite kind of chocolate.

Out of a survey of 22 people who liked chocolate and one who didn’t, half of the people preferred milk chocolate, 18.18% favored hot chocolate, and white chocolate and very dark chocolate come in a tie next with 13.63% each. For toppings, 36.36% people liked plain chocolate, 22.73% preferred chocolate with caramel and third in line was chocolate containing liquor inside with 18.18%.

I, however, like plain milk chocolate or with dried fruits, preferably the brand Lindt or Ferrero Rocher. Hot chocolate is an enjoyment, too, but only in winter when the weather is cold.

For me, chocolate is great for all occasions; the only downside to chocolate is that it is packed with sugar and unhealthy if eaten in large amounts. I use chocolate as a little reward for myself for when I get good grades, when I win something, or when I finish a project that took a lot of effort. For example, when I was little, I would sometimes keep a bag of m&m’s on my desk and everyday after I finished all of my homework, I would eat ten m&m’s. It made me more motivated to do my homework quickly, and this method of self-discipline worked well for a long time.

Chocolate is also great for cheering someone up on a bad day. At church when I was America, I would bring some chocolates if I had any and if I saw one of my mom’s students crying, I’d tell them that if they stopped crying, I’d give them chocolate. My dad did the same thing, except he gave candy to all the little children and a lot of children came to church willingly just for his treats. In time, he was known as “Tang shu shu” which means Mr. Candy and I was “Tang jie jie”, meaning Miss Candy/older sister. Chocolate does not work only on little children; it’s great for anyone at any sad moment in life. The most popular images are the ones of teenage girls, freshly dumped eating chocolate like it’s the only food on earth. I have never had this experience, but some of my friends turn to chocolate when they are depressed.

Chocolate is a great gift for anyone at anytime. Valentines Day, White Day, Christmas, birthdays, and more are holidays where giving chocolate is very common. The perfect box for chocolate in my opinion is a beautiful golden box with dark brown ribbons tying it together. To add a dash of creativity, chocolate can be melted for anyone to shape into hearts, stars, and anything they can think of. Most people like chocolate, so this present is usually safe to give; negative reactions are usually rare, and in my case, chocolate is always a great present.

Juice Diet Plan To Lose Weight Fast

Dieting and juicing are the new trends when it comes to fast weight loss. These methods prevent the formation of the fatty deposits in the body in addition to burning the bulges that are already a part of your figure.

More and more people are opting for fruit and vegetable juice plans to deal with weight issues. It is however important to remember that weight loss has little to do with depriving the body of everything lovely and more to do with eating healthy and burning extra calories. Nonetheless, here is a 5 day diet juice plan that can help in losing weight quickly.

Daily Juices

7 AM: The first recipe we have on board is a blend of spinach, cucumber, apple, wheatgrass, parsley and kiwifruit. This juice is nutritious and makes a tasty breakfast drink. You can alternate between this juice and other delicious smoothies to keep you going through the day

10 AM: The second recipe is a detoxifying juice blend of grapes, pineapple, carrot, ginger, apple and celery. Ginger spices up your drink. This is one drink you will savor to the last drop.

1 PM: Heat up tomato and lentil soup. It is good enough to keep you feeling fuller for much longer and its delicious too.

7 PM: Combine some healthy food portions with cranberry juice. A full stomach will ensure a good night's sleep.

Healthy Diet

You will survive taking the juices only diet for a few days and actually lose weight really fast . You however will find it harder to manage without food and could end up feeling nauseous and dizzy. Headaches also become frequent with severe diet changes. As soon as you start experiencing the negatives, it should be time to kick in some healthy diet food plan. A few days of juicing only will definitely help you lose weight quickly, but to keep up with healthy weight loss, you will have to start healthy foods too.

You can begin by cutting out fatty, sugary foods and going for healthier options. Cutting out calorie intakes is the way to go. Beside, you should aim at burning more calories than you eat. This means striking a balance between carbohydrates, proteins and vitamins and taking meals that are either too big nor too too small. Eating smaller meals, but frequently will keep metabolism going and help burn calories without much effort.

Weight Loss Tips

Vegetables and fruits should be increased in your meals as you cut out carbohydrates. They will supply the body with all the minerals and nutrients that it needs to keep up with the weight loss process.

To keep the body well hydrated for proper functioning during weight loss, drink plenty of water at the same time keeping off sugary, soft drinks. The juices make up part of the body's requirement of water, but you still need water to keep everything running smooth.

Learn to prepare healthy meals yourself. This way, you will manage to control what goes into making the food to have a healthy low fat meal at the end of the day.

4 Disadvantages of Eating Too Much Fat

People’s perception of fat is slowly changing as more and more research reveals the health benefits of this nutrient. Whilst it is essential for good health and needs to be included as part of a healthy, balanced diet, you can still get too much. In this article I will be discussing four of the disadvantages of eating too much fat.

1) ELEVATED BLOOD GLUCOSE LEVELS:- Polyunsaturated fat can be broken down into two main types; omega 3 essential fatty acids (EFAs) and omega 6 EFAs. To get the full benefits omega 3 EFAs and omega 6 EFAs need to be eaten in balance. Eating a higher concentration of either type leads to various problems. One of the problems caused by overdosing on omega 3 EFAs is elevated blood glucose levels in people suffering from type 2 diabetes. This can lead to a number of negative symptoms such as blurred vision and weakness. In the long term, elevated blood glucose levels damage your blood vessel and vital organs.

2) ELEVATED LOW DENSITY LIPOPROTEIN (LDL) CHOLESTEROL LEVELS:- There are two types of cholesterol; LDL and HDL. When blood levels of LDL cholesterol are high it builds up in the artery walls and causes blockages. This restricts the flow of blood throughout the body which means the heart has to work harder and makes the chances of a heart attack more likely. HDL cholesterol collects LDL cholesterol from the artery walls and transports it to the liver where it can be processed and removed from the body. Eating too much saturated fat causes an increase in blood levels of LDL cholesterol which leads to the negative symptoms discussed above.

3) INCREASED CANCER RISK:- Overdosing on omega 6 EFAs has been linked with a number of cancers. Two separate studies have linked high consumption of omega 6 EFAs with breast cancer and prostate cancer.

4) INFLAMMATION:- Eating high levels of omega 6 EFAs has been shown to increase inflammation in the body. Inflammation has a number of negative side effects which include bruising, redness and swelling.

Whilst overdosing on fat can be a problem this does not mean you should remove it from your diet. Instead ensure that no more than 70% of your daily calories come from fat. At the very least 15% of your daily calories need to come from carbohydrates and another 15% from protein. This will allow you to get adequate levels of all three macronutrients and most importantly help you avoid eating too much fat.