How Important Is Consuming Protein?
Everyone knows what protein is, in general, but most people don’t have a deeper concept of just how vital it is to our body. It is so important to consume enough healthy protein in our diet and from a healthy source. Opinions vary, but it is recommended that it is healthy to consume anywhere from 0.5 to 0.8 grams of protein per pound of body weight daily. A bodybuilder’s protein intake recommendations may be higher in order to add the desired muscle mass.
So What Are Proteins?
Proteins are the macronutrients that form the foundation of our diet. Proteins help to build new cells and regulate the metabolism. They actually help all of your cells communicate and shuttle oxygen throughout the body in the form of hemoglobin. They also have the ability to build muscle.
Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. It is absolutely essential that we consume these daily and in the right way. Our DNA directs the body to join various combinations of amino acids into a variety of sequences, each serving a unique function and feeding our bodies exactly what it needs.
We can store fats and carbohydrates to draw on when needed, but we do not have a storage pool of amino acids. We need to add to it each day in order to build the body proteins that we need. If we are missing a particular amino acid to form the protein it needs, it will pull that amino acid by breaking down existing muscle protein. Consistently lacking certain amino acids means we will lose muscle weight, energy and, eventually, fundamental body functions.
The Main Sources Of Daily Protein:
- Meat, poultry, eggs, dairy, and fish are complete sources of protein. They contain all of the essential amino acids.
- Nuts, seeds, beans, peas, and whole grains. However, in order to consume all of the essential amino acids, plant foods must be used to complement each other with their amino acid profiles. Beans tend to be low in one amino acid that grains have plenty of, so combining these foods forms a complete protein, like beans and rice.
Be sure and consume your daily healthy protein and remember that centering on a protein diet promotes energy, healthy muscles and even weight loss!
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged amino acids, carbohydrates, carbs, chicken, diet, digestion, eggs, energy, fats, fish, health, healthy, metabolism, milk, nutrition, nuts, protein, protein powder, salmon, snacks, weight loss.
Avocados And Many Of Their Amazing Health Benefits
Avocados have a high fat content, but it is a super healthy fat. They were once put on the bad foods list for this fact and yet now they are one of the most popular foods because of their wonderful nutritional value. They are literally packed with the healthy monounsaturated fat, lutein, potassium, folate and numerous other vitamins and nutrients. Avocados support your entire body, from your heart to your eyes.
What are some specific things avocados can do for you?
- Heart protection – the high amounts of potassium regulates blood pressure, which helps to prevent heart disease and strokes, and even lower cholesterol. The folate in them also contributes to lowering your chances of getting heart disease and heart attacks.
- Your vision – A fabulous ingredient in avocados is lutein, numerous antioxidants and zeaxanthin……all that protect your eyes from macular degeneration and even improve your eyesight.
- Cancer prevention – The numerous antioxidants in avocados are a great cancer prevention. Oleic acid that is prevalent is known protection against breast cancer.
- Great source of fiber – Consuming healthy amounts of fiber is a major component in the prevention of chronic disease. Avocados are rich in both soluble and insoluble fibers.
- Low glycemic index – This helps to control your blood sugar levels, preventing the onset of Type 2 Diabetes.
- Rich in Vitamin K – This great vitamin plays an important role in our ability to have functional blood clotting and wound healing. It is also very important to help build strong bones.
- Rich in Vitamin B6 – This directly supports your nervous system, your teeth and gums and your numerous red blood cells and can reduce morning sickness.
- A stronger immune system – The high amount of antioxidants directly supports the immune system.
- Lose weight – The high amounts of monounsaturated fats in avocados actually speeds up your metabolic rate which can help with weight loss.
- Prevent halitosis – Believe it or not, but avocados can get rid of bad breath! It is able to effectively remove intestinal putrefaction and decomposition which is the actual cause of bad breath and a coated tongue.
- A protein source – They provide ALL 18 essential amino acids we need for our bodies to form a complete protein, that is just amazing! Also, the protein in an avocado is easy to digest and readily absorbed due to their fiber content.
We all love a delicious guacamole, but adding a little avocado to your daily meals can benefit your health tremendously! Add it to a burger, a salad, slice it up on the side with a little salt and pepper or use it as a condiment.
They are delicious and so good for you!
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged amino acids, antioxidants, avocado, cancer, diabetes, diet, digestion, energy, fats, fiber, health, healthy, healthy fats, heart, heart disease, metabolism, nutrition, potassium, protein, snacks, vegetables, vitamins, weight loss.
Is There Such A Thing As A Healthy Fat?
In recent years fat became enemy number one and all the experts preached that a low-fat or zero fat diet was the only healthy diet. They believed this was the key to losing weight, managing cholesterol and basically would solve any and all health issues. What happened was the opposite and our population has never been so obese and riddled with health problems, including soaring numbers of people being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. Everyone turned to processed foods with very little if any fat and filled with carbohydrates and fillers, to just end up putting on the weight.
As a result of these disastrous results for so many was the new focus to not only make a solid effort not to consume too much fat, but to try to consume a healthy portion of the good types of fat. Diets then emerged like the Atkins diet and the South Beach Diet that are very high in fat and with a definitive protein a focus and yet everyone on these diets started losing weight like crazy. With this new way of eating, the concept of healthy fats has really taken off and all of the great health benefits that go along with it.
So, there is such a thing as a healthy fat! They are essential to our daily physical and emotional health. Fat is not the enemy and can even help you lose weight and improve your health. What gets confusing is that there are good fats and bad fats….oh and trans fats are really bad. They are the biggest cause of weight gain, clogged arteries and so much more.
So what are are some of the good fats?
- Olive Oil
- Sunflower Oil
- Sesame Oil
- Safflower Oil
- Sunflower Seeds
- Soybean Oil
- Sunflower, Sesame and Pumpkin Seeds
- Fatty Fish
Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids:
- Mustard Seeds
- Flax Seeds and Flax Seed Oil
- Salmon and Sardines
- Fish Oil
Saturated Fats (but on a limited basis):
- Beef, Lamb and Pork
- Chicken (with the skin on)
- Butter, Milk and Cream
- Ice Cream
- Palm Oil
- Coconut Oil
Make that special effort to get your healthy fats at each meal and enjoy them guilt free! ( :
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged avocado, carbohydrates, carbs, chicken, Coconut, diabetes, diet, digestion, eggs, fats, fish, health, healthy, healthy fats, heart disease, metabolism, nutrition, nuts, positive, protein, salmon, weight loss.
What Is Metabolic Syndrome?
Metabolic syndrome is not a disease but a group of risk factors such as high blood pressure, high blood sugar, unhealthy cholesterol levels, and increased abdominal fat. It tends to run in families, so you can be genetically predisposed to it. It is also more common among African-Americans, Hispanics, Asians, and Native Americans. As you get older, the risk of developing it tends to go up.
Metabolic syndrome can be a serious health condition that you should take seriously if you have been diagnosed with it. It can give you a higher risk of heart disease, stroke and vascular disease and you are more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes. It has become very common in the United States with close to 20 to 25 percent of adult Americans diagnosed with it, nearly 50 million Americans have it, according to the American Heart Association, that’s about one out of every six people!
Insulin resistance is a factor associated with it, which is where the body can’t use insulin efficiently. This creates issues because the body needs insulin to convert sugar and starch into energy and insulin is a hormone that helps move blood sugar into cells for this important purpose. Once you develop this, it can lead to high blood sugar levels and easy weight gain, especially around the mid-section. Instead of having energy it all goes to storing everything you eat into fat. This tends to be a hereditary condition, so if you have a history of it in your family or diabetes, you should be especially conscious of a healthy and active lifestyle.
The good news is that it can be easily controlled and reversed, mainly by simple changes to your lifestyle, such as a healthy diet and plenty of exercise. It is also possible to prevent or delay its onset, so a healthy and physically active lifestyle should be a lifelong commitment.
If you’ve recently been diagnosed with metabolic syndrome, you might be anxious and worried, but the best thing to do is be grateful and think of it as a wake-up call. It’s not something to ignore or mess around with, but instead a time to get serious about improving your overall health for life. Making some simple changes to your daily habits and eating routine that is recommended by your doctor can prevent serious illness in the future.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged diabetes, diet, energy, exercise, health, healthy, heart, heart disease, metabolism, nutrition, positive, protein, protein powder, sugar, vegetables, weight loss.
The Way To Maximize Your Metabolism
What exactly is your metabolism? It is the process of how we burn our calories we eat and how quickly or easily we gain and lose weight. Age and genetics play a role, and there’s nothing we can do about that, but there are other ways to speed it up if you want to.
First, a key piece of advice, is to get your thyroid checked by a qualified practitioner (they are hard to find). If your thyroid is under active then boosting your metabolism will be a real challenge.
A key way to boost your metabolism is to eat breakfast! This can boost it by as much as 10%. Eating a healthy protein is the best choice for sure and this gets the digestion process going to start your metabolism burning.
Eating protein is a great way to support and boost your metabolism, by as much as 25%! It requires more energy to digest protein which burns more calories and it sustains you for longer.
Regular exercise is key, especially earlier in the day. If you can even take a brisk walk first thing in the morning this will get your motor going and burn more calories throughout the day. Muscle burns more calories than fat, so don’t forget to include some anaerobic activities in your work out routine (stretching, weight lifting and resistance exercises).
Get your fiber! Having a diet rich in fiber is very helpful. It makes you feel fuller longer which helps with weight management and keep you regular.
Try just a few of these and see what happens! These are easy changes that will have dramatic effects on your metabolism.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged carbohydrates, diabetes, diet, digestion, energy, exercise, fats, fiber, health, healthy, metabolism, nutrition, protein, protein powder, snacks, weight loss.
A List Of Paleo Foods For Beginners
What is the Paleo Diet? It is eating like they did during the Paleolithic Period, or that’s the idea behind it….imagining what was eaten…WAY back in the day. This means anything we could hunt or find – meats, fish, nuts, leafy greens, regional veggies, and seeds. The idea is to focus on protein and vegetables that are from whole and natural sources, plus a little bit of healthy fats and very few carbs.
We all have to start somewhere and sometimes having ideas or a list really helps! On the Paleo Diet you can’t have dairy, grains, starches, wheat or legumes….but what CAN you have? It can be a challenge to make these changes, so here’s some specific ideas on what to put on your shopping list.
Healthy meats of all kinds and fish, plus fruits and veggies are a winner. Everyone knows fruit is healthy but too much is not good for you because many of them are high in sugar, which spikes your blood sugar. So what are the approved fruits and veggies, oils, nuts and seeds? Here’s some great ideas for you….
Suggestions for healthy vegetables:
- Artichoke hearts
- Green Onions
Suggestions for healthy fruits:
- Bananas (but limited)
Suggestions for healthy nuts and seeds:
- Pine Nuts
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Sunflower Seeds
- Macadamia Nut
Suggestions for healthy oils:
- Coconut oil
- Olive oil
- Macadamia Oil
I always love something I can print out and take to the grocery store with me. I hope this helps you follow your new lifestyle changes on the fantastic Paleo Diet!
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged avocado, carbohydrates, chicken, diet, digestion, eggs, energy, fats, fiber, fish, fruit, health, healthy, healthy fats, metabolism, nutrition, nuts, Paleo diet, positive, protein, snacks, vegetables, vitamins, weight loss.
What’s All This Talk About Glycemic Index?
The Glycemic Index is a measurement of foods containing carbohydrates and their impact on blood sugar levels. This unique reference to foods is now becoming very popular but is actually a relatively new way of analyzing foods. It is extremely helpful to those struggling with insulin issues and weight issues.
Specific diets that focus on eating foods with a low Glycemic Index have been associated with a significant decreased risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, stroke, depression, chronic kidney disease, formation of gall stones, neural tube defects, formation of uterine fibroids, and cancers of the breast, colon, prostate, and pancreas.
Here is an interesting list of foods and their GI values. Take a look.
Foods with a low to medium Glycemic Index Value
- Cherries – 22
- Grapefruit – 25
- Muesli – 43
- Prunes – 29
- Oat Bran -55
- Apricots, dried – 29
- Ice Cream – 38
- Apple – 38
- Whole Milk – 31
- Sweet potato – 44
- Minestrone soup – 39
- Spaghetti – 38
- Pear, fresh – 38
- Hummus – 6
- Capellini – 45
- Strawberries – 40
- Peanuts – 15
- Orange, navel – 40
- Sourdough bread – 53
- Banana – 52
- M&M peanut candies – 33
- Quinoa – 53
Foods with a medium to high Glycemic Index Value
- Bagel – 72
- Pea soup – 66
- Hamburger bun – 61
- French Baguette – 95
- Baked potato – 85
- Scones – 92
- Waffles – 76
- Rice Krispies – 82
- Corn Flakes – 92
- Watermelon – 72
- Dates – 103
- Pumpkin – 75
- Rice crackers – 91
- Pretzels – 83
- Instant rice – 87
- Wild rice – 87
It’s a new way to focus on food, but so valuable! Taking a moment to think before you eat can add incredible health benefits. Focus on eating healthy amounts of quality protein, some healthy fat and a little bit of low glycemic carbohydrates and you will just feel better!!
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged carbohydrates, diet, digestion, energy, glycemic index, health, healthy, healthy fats, metabolism, nutrition, value, vegetables, vitamins, weight loss.