What is the Best Weight Loss Diet?

…And is there such a thing?

With the hectic pace most people live their lives today, it is becoming more and more common to eat on the run, eat convenience foods, and eat whatever is handy rather than plan a well balanced healthy meal.  This has led to a growing problem, more specifically growing waist lines.  This in turn has led to countless diet plans, exercise program, and weight loss gurus telling us how to get in shape and drop those excess pounds.  So, what is the best weight loss program?

As you probably have heard by now, there is no one quick trick for losing weight.  Even the experts agree that while some of the weight loss pills, fad diets, and crash diets do work temporarily, they do not provide results that can be sustained for the long term.

The best weight loss diet is one that allows you to modify your lifestyle for the better, get into shape physically, and sustain the changes you make for the rest of your life.  Eating healthy, eating proper portion sizes and getting regular amounts of exercise are truly the best ways to get fit and lose weight.  If you are unsure how to go about making these changes, you may want to consider consulting with a nutritionist, a personal trainer, or joining a health club.  It is very important that you start off correctly so that you can stick with the changes you make.

You should also remember that the best weight loss program for you may not be the same as the one your best friend is doing, or your neighbor down the road.  You should take some time to look into different plans to find the one that will best fit into your lifestyle and allow you to accept the necessary modifications.

You must also be aware that results may not be seen immediately.  You did not put the weight on overnight, and you will not be able to take it off that quickly either.  It is quite normal to actually gain some weight after starting an exercise program, due to the building of lean muscle mass, which gives you that ideal toned look.  Once you have overcome this however, it is reasonable to expect about a pound of weight loss each week.  Remember, set goals that are reasonable, and ones you can actually attain.  This will keep you from becoming discouraged.  You should also set smaller goals, such as losing two pounds this month, rather than a larger goal of wanting to lose twenty five pounds in total.  In time you will realize these changes are simple to adhere to and the results are well worth the effort.

Preparing for the Holiday Season Weight Gain

The weather has turned colder.  The decorations are starting to appear.  The hustle and bustle of shoppers begins to pick up.  There are wonderful smells starting to emanate from the kitchen.  That’s right!  It’s the holiday season once again.  What does all of this mean?  While it often brings feelings of togetherness and excitement, for many, it also means weight gain.

Even though no one wants to be “that person” who is constantly harping on how bad all of the food at the holiday party is it is still possible to avoid the unwanted holiday weight gain.  One way to go about this process is to prepare in advance.  When heading out to a large holiday dinner, consider the food possibilities that will be served before you leave, and make a game plan.  Fill your plate with healthy options such as salad, vegetables, and lean protein.  Try to stay away from empty fillers such as rolls, stuffing, gravy, and mashed potatoes.

Next, just because you see a ton of food in front of you, does not mean that you have to eat more than normal.  Consider the amount of food you would normally eat, and make your plate to resemble that amount.  Skip the seconds, and refrain from extra nibbling while conversing with others at the table, or while packing up leftovers.

Then, conquer the dessert table in a way that is practical.  Have one small piece of fruit pie, one or two cookies, or a sliver of cake.  Do not feel as though you have to sample every delicious treat that is on display.

Finally, try to avoid alcohol as much as possible.  Alcohol adds a ton of calories to your diet and can completely derail your plans.  If you must have a drink, choose a glass of wine or beer which you can sip to last longer, without reaching for another.  Steer clear of drinks such as eggnog, which are loaded with sugar and fat, and can pack more calories than your entire holiday meal.

Effectiveness of Using Quicktrim

quicktrimQuicktrim is a brand of weight loss supplements that have been growing in popularity since their fairly recent release.  This popularity is due in part to testimonials by a number of famous people who claim they have used the products and have had successful results.

There are four different products offered in the quick trim family.  They are as follows:

1. Extreme Burn:  This supplement claims to be able to burn three hundred percent more calories, up to a total of eight thousand calories each month.

2. Fast Cleanse:  It is recommended that this supplement be taken when weight loss is first begun as it will produce a cleanse for forty eight hours.  This form of cleansing often produces fast weight loss; however most of this weight is from water.

3.  Burn and Cleanse:  This supplement comes with the first two products combined in one package.  The combination is supposed to be taken for two weeks, while following the recommended workout routine.

4.  Celluslim:  This is a type of gel that is rubbed into trouble spots on the body to reduce cellulite.

While each of the products listed above can be taken on their own, the quick trim company promotes using them in conjunction with one another to increase effectiveness.

As is the case with most products on the market today, there are a number of customer reviews that rate the Quicktrim program.  These reviews are quite mixed, and because there seem to be an equal number of good and bad ratings, it is not completely clear how effective the program is.

The parent company of Quicktrim, GNC, is a well known company that has a strong reputation for producing products that are of high quality and renowned by individuals in the weight loss and fitness industry.  That being said, there is always a bit of hesitation to believe that using a supplement to achieve any type of long term weight loss success is truly effective.  In fact, many believe supplements work to the contrary because they do not promote healthy lifestyle changes.

While it is quite possible that quick trim could be the next best thing to help people lose weight, there is not enough evidence as of yet to make a definitive determination.  The best way to lose weight is to eat a healthy diet, cut out junk food, and get regular exercise.  Supplements may provide some added benefits, but they are typically not a substitute for positive changes.

Benefits of Protein Bars and Shakes

protein barsWith the growing healthy living trend, more and more people are becoming focused on their personal level of fitness as well as their body image.  Along with this craze has come a wide variety of products that are meant to help with the quest for a better body.  Some of the most popular products to hit the market include protein bars and shakes.  While these items seem to fly off the shelves, it is still worth examining the benefits of such products, and determining if there are any risks associated.

One concern that many have is that consuming too many protein bars or shakes can cause your kidneys to be strained, leading to renal failure.  While this is somewhat true, and sustained periods of overloading on protein can cause kidney issues, it is not likely that consuming a regular amount of these products will cause harm.

So, how much protein is safe, and is really needed?  This amount depends a great deal on your level of physical activity as well as your total body weight.  The minimum requirement for men is fifty six grams of protein daily and forty six grams of protein per day for women.  A more effective rule of thumb to follow, regardless of gender, is to consume 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight if you are not very active, and twice this amount if you are quite active.

If you are interested in building muscle mass, you must make sure you are getting enough protein because the body is not very capable of storing protein in an accessible form, aside from in muscle tissue.  This means that your muscles will start to be broken down for nutrition if your body finds a need for more protein than it is receiving.  Also, protein is considered to be one of the major building blocks for muscle.  This means that in order for them to grow, they will need a higher level of protein.

The benefits of the best protein shake and protein barprotein shakes come mostly from their easy access following a workout.  When you work out, your muscles become primed to absorb the most protein.  Consuming a form of protein after exercising, especially after endurance training or resistance training, is an ideal way to send nutrition directly into muscle tissue, prompting them to grow.  Shakes and bars offer a large amount of protein quickly, which is easily digested.  Not only that, these products are quite convenient and easily transported them, making them simple to consume at any time.

Healthy Halloween Alternatives

With the weather turning a bit chillier, and the days getting a bit shorter, it is once again time to start thinking about Halloween.  This time of year causes many parents (and dentists) to shudder a bit at the mere thought of all of those sweets children will be eating.  This does not have to be the case.  There are some great healthy Halloween alternatives that allow for great fun, without all of the unwanted sugar.

One great alternative to the candy bar is the granola bar.  These treats are still sweet, and still satisfy a child’s need for something tasty and fun, but actually provide a plenty of nutrition.  Choose bars that contain good amounts of oats, nuts, and natural sweeteners such as honey, and you have a beneficial snack to drop into trick or treater bags.

Another good option is juice boxes.  Children love juice, and choosing an option that is one hundred percent real juice with no added sugar provides nutrition and vitamins, while keeping kids happy!

Finally, consider handing out mini bags of pretzels.  Pretzels are tasty, crunchy, and offer a great respite from the gobs of other types of sweet treats.  Today, there are a wide variety of shapes, and flavors, which are sure to please every little ghoul that rings your bell this season.


Breast Cancer Awareness – the Best Way to Protect Yourself

Breast cancer is a devastating disease that affects thousands of women on an annual basis.  While just the thought of this can be extremely scary and just about every woman has been somehow affected by the disease, it is important to understand that awareness is key, and you can protect yourself.

One of the best ways to protect yourself from breast cancer is to perform regular, routine, self breast exams.  These exams are simple to do, and should be done once per month, preferably following your regular menstrual cycle.  Even though physical examinations by a doctor are extremely important and play a large role in preventative care, there is no substitute for self exams.  In fact, a high number of cases of breast cancer were first detected by the patient through a self breast exam.

Mammograms also play a critical role in the early detection of breast cancer.  For women who are over the age of forty, and for those who are younger with a family history of the disease, an annual mammogram is a valuable tool in this fight.

Finally, maintaining a healthy diet with plenty of regular exercise can be quite beneficial to maintaining overall health and well being, and even fighting off cancer.  Consuming a diet that is rich in fresh fruits and vegetables, lean protein, low fat dairy, and whole grains has been shown to provide many benefits.  Exercising at least three times per week for about thirty minutes per session also keeps body fat levels in check, weight under control, and the body overall fit and healthy.