Top 10 Tips to Beat the Thanksgiving Overeating Blues!

Yes, Turkey Day is Just Around the Corner!

Keeping up with your workout routine and taking your supplements every day are important – But ensuring that you don’t overindulge during Thankgiving sometimes does more than spare your waistline – It helps continue the healthy eating habits throughout the rest of the holidays!

Here are a few tips to help avoid overeating at relatives (and even your own) Thanksgiving Feasts!

1 – Replace Sweet Potatoe caserole & Marshmellows with Baked Sweet Potato Fries 2 – Replace Stuffing with Whole Grain Rice 3 – Replace Butter and Heavy Cream in Mashed potatoes with Whole Milkand Low Fat Sour Cream 4 – Replace Pumpkin Pie with Pumpkin Bread 5 – Eat on a smaller plate, so that you don’t overload on helpings 6 – Drink a glass of water before every meal – Your body sometimes translates thirst as hunger 7 – Drink White Wines instead of Red, for less calories 8 – Serve roasted greens, like Brussels Sprouts, Broccoli and Asparagus – load up on greens 9 – Replace Creamed Spinach with Sauteed Spinach and Garlic 10 – Try Fresh Fruit and Low Fat Whipped Cream as a dessert to avoid guilty sweets

Remember – The holidays are about family, and the focus on food can simply be avoided by making a few healthy substitutions

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Top 8 Reasons for Loss of Libido in Women

Millions of women in the United States experience loss of libido at some point in life, for a number of reasons. Loss of libido in women can be very difficult to deal with, but understanding the driving factors behind a decrease in sex drive is the first step to working towards a solution. Below are a few reasons as to why women may experience decreased labido.

1. Stress Stress is a large cause for most loss of libido in women as well as men. During these tough economic times, stress induced sexual dysfunction has skyrocketed. Learning stress management techniques are key in combating loss of libido brought on by stress.

2. Relationship Problems Relationship issues are another killer of libido in women. Since women require more emotional closeness, any friction in a relationship can cause a significant loss of sex drive in women. Damage to intimacy caused by betrayal, stress, or trust can cause women to lose interest in sexual relations with their partners.

3. Moderate Alcohol Consumption Moderate alcohol consumption has been linked to improved cardiovascular condition, but it can be very harmful to your libido. Although there is a level of reduced inhibition for some women who drink, excess drinking can numb your sex drive as well as turn your partner off.

4. Lack of Rest Rest is extremely important for those women who are trying to improve their libido. Loss of sleep and fatigue zap away energy needed for a strong libido. Proper levels of sleep are also beneficial for cardiovascular benefits which are very important for proper libido in women as well as men.

5. Various Types of Medication Medications such as blood pressure pills, antidepressants, and oral contraceptives have been linked to reducing libido in women. If you are experiencing a loss of sex drive after starting a new medication, consult your doctor asap.

6. Weight Gain Losing a few pounds can be monumental for women suffering from a loss of libido. Self image is critical for women during intimacy. Not only will losing a few pounds improve your self esteem, women and men who exercise often benefit from an improved sex drive.

7. Depression The role of depression can be very complicated when it comes to libido loss in women. The challenge is that sometimes the depression has an onset caused by poor sexual relations or the medications for depression may be the actual cause of the sexual dysfunction. Work with your doctor to make sure that you are on the best possible regiment for depression.

8. Onset of Menopause 50% of women claim to lose their libido at the start of menopause. At this point in life, many of the above factors can collide and exacerbate matters worse. Vaginal dryness, pain, medications and lower self esteem can all work together to decreases the sexual experience.

Now that we are aware of some of the main causes of loss of libido in women, what is currently on the market that may alleviate the loss of sexual performance? To date all the clinical trials on PDE 5 inhibitors such as Viagra have not been proven effective. There currently are thousands of over the counter herbs and creams which are also proven to be useless. The most effective and promising compound for loss of sexual function in women has been found to be Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). DHEA is produced naturally by the adrenal glands and produces testosterone in men and estrogen in women. A recent clinical trial in the reputable Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy (volume 28, 2002) proved that DHEA replacement therapy was effective for improving sexual function in women. A combination of lifestyle and proper supplementation may be essential in overcoming acute or chronic loss of libido.

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Top 3 Natural Supplements for Depression

Over 15 million Americans suffer from some sort of depression. Many people first turn to drugs such as Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft and Lexapro to treat their depression, and fail to investigate natural and holistic supplements. The truth is, numerous natural vitamins and supplements have been clinically proven to boost mood and aid in depression management.

Below are 3 of the most important natural supplements for enhancing mood and improve depression.

DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone) is a natural occurring hormone in the body that is produced by the adrenal glands. As men and women age, the levels of DHEA begin to steadily drop. Out of the three natural antidepressants reviewed, DHEA has the most promise and effectiveness. In a current article published on WEB MD titled “DHEA may help midlife depression”, half of the DHEA users experienced a 50% reduction in depressive symptoms. Studies published in the American Journal of Psychiatry also point to this natural hormone as being therapeutic for treatment of depression. The article on WEB MD goes on to state that users who refuse to take prescription products can benefit from natural supplementation with DHEA. Users of DHEA can also benefit from fat loss and a boost in libido associated with DHEA.

5- HTP is a natural occurring amino acid which is sold over the counter for depression and even insomnia treatment. 5-HTP has been said to work by increasing the levels of serotonin in the brain. All though some double blind studies have suggested that 5-HTP may have some benefits, better clinical trials are needed to confirm the effectiveness of this amino acid for depression.5-HTP has been linked to cause heart valve damage as well as hypertension.

St John’s Wort is derived from a yellow flowered plant and has been used for hundreds of years to help treat depression. A review by the National Center for Complimentary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) concluded that St. John’s Wort had little or no evidence of treating depression. Although St John’s Wort has very few side effects, this natural antidepressant treatment has been linked to several interactions with prescription products. St John’s Wort is metabolized in the liver through the Cytochrome P450 which is a common route of most prescription products. Consult your doctor before using this product as it can causes serious issues with any prescription products. Depression is a very complex illness that can be related to genetics factors, life changing events, substance abuse and certain medication just to name a few. The biology of depression is believed to be related to a chemical process in the brain which produces less serotonin and norepinephrine.

Pharmaceutical products such as Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft and Lexapro have all been proven to treat patients suffering with various sort of depression. Although these products are regularly prescribed to treat depression, they do come with serious side effects. Drugs like Paxil, Zoloft and Prozac should only be taken when other natural and holistic methods have been exhausted and prove ineffective.

Depression remains to be a very complex disease which can be overcome with proper medications and therapy. Although prescription products remain the first line gold standard treatment, natural remedies such as DHEA show effectiveness in treating depression. As with all natural supplements, consult your doctor before staring any new regiment.

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Top 5 Tips from “Eat This Not That”

By now most of us are familiar with the popular series of books “Eat This Not That”. Maybe you don’t listen to the hype. Perhaps you meant to pick up a copy but are too busy. Maybe you even the whole series! We’ve scavenged the books for the top5 most important points from the “Eat This Not That” series. Below are 5 takeaways to live by, and in doing so can can boost metabolism and help you lose weight naturally. 1. Be Real with your Sweet Self – Toss Artificial Sweeteners Artificial sweeteners should be eliminated at all cost. Over the last 25 years, more and more foods are popping up claiming to be sugar free. Is it a coincidence that this increase in artificial sweeteners follows the same increase in obesity and in children? Many leading researcher point to the “artificial sweeteners “ addiction that Americans have as a direct cause of the obesity epidemic facing America. Diet sodas, sugar free type 2 diabetes foods and other so called healthy alternatives are the underlying cause of much of the new cases of obesity. Research points to the artificial sweeteners tricking the brain into believing that sugar or nutrition has arrived. Since there is actually no nutrition in the body, the brain sends out signals to the body telling it to start eating. This phenomenon is what causes us to overeat and crave foods that we normally wouldn’t. Safer alternatives can be unprocessed honey, stevia and raw sugar.

2. Dine on Unrefined… Sea Salt that is! Typical white refined sea salt is another substance that can be eliminated and replaced with unrefined sea salt. White refined sea salt sometimes has anti-caking agents which have aluminum which can lead to metal toxicity. Iodized salt sometimes includes dextrose which is used in order to prevent that salt from turning purple. Unprocessed sea salt has plenty of trace minerals that are beneficial to your body.

3. Water, Water, Water – Ditch Soft Drinks Skip the sodas, juices and coffee drinks and replace it with plenty of water. Juices, sodas and coffee based products are loaded with sugar, caffeine and other toxins which can cause tooth decay, sugar addiction, caffeine addiction, insulin resistance and insomnia just to name a few. Processed juice forms, energy drinks and soda are also loaded with calories and sugar which provide very little nutritional support.

4. Pass on Processed – Go Organic Try to eat organic when possible. The battles between organic and conventionally grown foods have been going on for decades. Organic foods are those grown with our hormones, chemicals or pesticides. Although these foods are cleaner and less contaminated, price has been the most common hindrance when switching to an organic diet. With chains such as Whole Foods increasing, the cost of organic foods is now much less than in the past. What sounds safer and healthier, eating eggs from chickens that are given hormones and antibiotics or eggs from chickens fed a clean natural diet and are allowed to roam around the range as opposed to cages? Enough said!

5. Go for the Green – Iceberg vs. Romaine Skip the iceberg lettuce and choose romaine or spinach instead. Iceberg lettuce has very little nutritional benefits when compared to greener forms of lettuce. When compared side by side, romaine and baby spinach has more fiber, iron, calcium, foliate, and vitamin c just to name a few. Although texturally different, the taste of greener leafier lettuce can be adapted to rather quickly.

These are 5 simple changes that can be done completed with very little effort and can result is fast, safe and permanent weight loss. For those wanting to include natural supplementation to assist in weight management, consider products that are DHEA and Green Tea based as both these natural products have been clinically proven to help reduce fat.

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Top 5 Things DHEA Can Help

What is DHEA? DHEA has been at the center of many natural remedies to improve mood, reverse aging, improve sex drive and burn belly fat. Dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) is a precursor hormone produced by the adrenal glands in both men and women. DHEA is also known as a pheromone for the sex steroids. As men and women age, levels of DHEA in the body begin to diminish drastically. Here are details of medical research findings which have proven DHEA to be the natural fountain of youth.

1. Longevity As medicine and anti-aging develops, many people search for countless means to live longer and look younger. A 2008 study published in the medical Journal of American Geriatrics concluded that men with low levels of DHEA showed a significant association with a lower lifespan as opposed to those men with a higher level of this vital hormone. Clinical studies such as this have proven the antiaging effects of DHEA in both men and women to be real.

2. Weight Loss A clinical study published in the Journal of American Medicine (Jama) by researcher Villareal concluded that study participants taking 50mg of DHEA were able to lose more abdominal fat than those taking placebo in the study. This clinical data is in line with numerous other studies proving that supplementation with DHEA is in fact highly effective at reducing weight and even improving insulin sensitivity.

3. Depression Depression is an increasing common problem amongst adults today, specifically in harsh economic times. Unless diagnosed with a serious mental illness, taking prescriptions for depression should be a last resort, and only under a doctor’s supervision. DHEA is a natural supplement which can be used to aid depression in individuals not suffering from serious mental illness. DHEA has been studied and proven to improve depression and irritability as seen in the clinical study published in 1999 in The Journal of American Psychiatry. Although the data on depression is preliminary, there is plenty of promise for this natural hormone to help those that need mood improvement.

4. Diabetes and Lipids Millions of people worldwide experience abnormal insulin levels, and often have problems finding natural supplements for diseases such as Diabetes. Numerous studies demonstrate that participants taking natural DHEA supplements had improvements in insulin sensitivity as well as reduction in ldl cholesterol. In a recent study of 206 type 2 diabetic men, DHEA was found to be atheroprotective in humans.

5. Sex Drive Sexual Dysfunction is detrimental to any relationship, young or old. The inability to perform sexually can be embarrassing and stressful if left untreated. DHEA replacement therapy has been shown to be highly effective in treating sexual dysfunction in both men and women. When adrenal glands produce less and less DHEA, levels of androgen in men and estrogen in women also dip. These reductions in hormones have been directly linked to sexual dysfunction in both men and women. DHEA supplementation can reverse the effects of sexual dysfunction in individuals who suffer from decreased naturally occurring DHEA levels.

DHEA is considered one of the most clinically studies natural supplement son the market. Although some data is inconclusive, much of the findings conclude that DHEA can be beneficial as a natural alternative to many of life’s challenges. As with all natural supplements, consult your doctor before starting any new regiments.

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Top 5 Things You Didn’t Know About Belly Fat

Jelly Belly. Love Handles. Muffin Tops. Belly Fat. Call it what you wish, the truth is that unwanted stomach fat, or “Visceral Fat,” is more seriously harmful than the silly names we refer to it as. Think you know all there is about that unwanted weight around the midriff? Here are some facts that may not only surprise, but SHOCK you as to the dangers of excess weight around the abdomen.

1. Drop the Spare Tire, and Spare Your Life Belly fat, when hidden under the muscle and surrounding the organs, is known as visceral fat. Unlike the abdominal fat that jiggles when you jump up and down, this visceral belly fat actually turns into an “endocrine organ”. The belly flab you can see on the outside is visually unappealing, but it is not as dangerous as the belly flab you do not see, the visceral belly fat. Visceral fat surrounds vital organs and is responsible for what is known as metabolic syndrome. Those suffering from metabolic syndrome have an increase of free fatty acids, insulin resistance and elevated blood pressure. This dangerous cluster of diseases makes those with a large waste circumference 4-5 times likelier to die from cardiovascular events such as heart attack and stroke. Reduction of this abdominal fat not only will help you look better, but can also save your life. 2. Crunches Don’t Burn It Off Many people with excess belly fat resort to endless sit ups in order to try to reduce the flab around their bellies. One of the biggest myths in fitness is the concept that sit ups and crunches will burn your belly fat. Although abdominal exercises are beneficial for building the core muscles, they do very little for burning the fat surrounding the abdominal area. In many cases, the abdominal area actually looks bigger from the original fat plus the increase in core muscle gained from endless crunches.

3. Belly Fat Gain – So Easy, a Cave Man Can Do It Have you ever wondered why it is so easy to gain fat in the belly area and so hard to lose it? The answer to this question has to do with the sophistication of the human body. Since fat is stored energy, the body keeps this form of readily available fuel close to the very organs that use it. It doesn’t make sense for our body to utilize stored energy that is on your foot when it can keep it close by. Since stored fat is considered the emergency source of fuel, it is also the last area that the body burns fuel from. To use accounting terms, belly fat is considered first in and last out.

4. Blame your Ancestors for your Belly Why do some people store fat in their bellies while others on their thighs? The answer to this question is found in our DNA. Haven’t you noticed that as we get older we start looking just like our parents? The DNA handed down from generation has unique codes which program your body to store fat in specific areas. The same DNA that gives you specific body features like hair and eye color also makes you prone to retain fat in the abdomen. Although this fat can be eliminated, those with the belly fat storage gene have to work extremely hard to keep fat from accumulating around their guts.

5. The 3 Prong Method to Ditch the Love Handles If endless crunches are not the answer for belly fat reduction, what is? The best way to reduce belly fat is a multi-faceted approach that requires a strict diet, exercises and supplementation. The best exercises to reduce belly fat are those that use interval training. Interval training is based on quick elevations of heart rate followed by quick rest periods. Although exercise is important in reduction of belly fat, it is useless if you do not follow a proper diet. We recommend utilizing a basal metabolic rate (bmr) calculator in order to determine the correct amount of calories your body type needs in order to lose weight. BMR calculators are available all over the internet for free. The last component in reducing belly fat is supplementation. There are thousands of products on the market that claim to burn fat but offer little results if any. DHEA (Dehydropiandrosterone) is the only natural supplement that actually has been clinically proven to reduce abdominal fat. DHEA is a natural occurring hormone that starts to diminish as we age. Dehydroepiandrosterone has also been linked to increase in libido and mood.

Losing weight and belly fat sometimes seems like an impossible task. There are many challenges that many people have to overcome in order to win the battle of the bulge. By following some of the steps above and understating the risk associated with belly fat, the fight to lose that abdominal fat can be won. Do not be discouraged as the process to burn fat can sometimes be slow.

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Blue Print Cleanse – Breakthrough the Hype

Is the latest craze taking over the cleanse market merely a brilliant marketing campaign launched by the creators of the Blue Print Cleanse (BPC)? Even if the marketing is inflated, does the Blue Print Cleanse really work? You be the judge.

Where did the Blue Print Cleanse Come From?

The BPC was created by two nonmedical doctors, Zoe Sakoutis and Erica Huss, in early 2000. Huss, having a background in PR, has turned simple vegetable juice into a million dollar business. The Blue Print Cleanse uses the concept that drinking nothing but vegetable juice for three days will allow you to cleanse your body of toxins, processed food and excess weight. This concept is not new. Body cleansing is a has been around for many years claiming to be able to increase your energy, improve sleep, lose weight and improve overall health. Is there any scientific data proving this? Is the hype surrounding the Blue Print Cleanse warranted? Below we will dissect the clinical data and what are experts are saying regarding the Blue Print Cleanse.

1 – Recommended By… No One The first claim that jumps out with the Blue Print Cleanse system is saying that it is “recommended by”. This is concerning as there is no medical body which has yet to support the need for alternative cleansing. What the BPC does is get snippets from various doctors which would lead most to believe that cleansing is the new panacea. As with all aspects of medicine, there are doctors who are willing to support any new practice most of which they have financial interest in. Web MD clearly states on their website that these radical fad diets have “little science supporting them”.

The science of cleansing and detox is based around the concept that drinking potions or fasting will clean out your body of toxins and processed food. There is absolutely nothing that has ever been clinically studied or proven to do such. The human body is a very advanced machine in which it is designed to self cleanse and detoxify on its own. If this actually works, why have the creators of the BPC posted any clinical data or studies proving the relevancy?

2 – 3 Day Detox & Starvation leads to Temporary Results The BPC claims to work by using an extractor to take out all the raw nutrients of fruits and vegetables. The basic cleanse package they market is based around a 3 day cleanse in which you only drink juices that they provide you. This 3 day cleanse claims to be able to detoxify your body of any toxins which are making you feel tired or causing excess weight retention. Some users claim these 3 days detox programs indeed help them lose weight and feel better. Although these 3 day cleanse programs will cause weight loss, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure than any weight loss comes from starvation which causes water and muscle loss. As soon as you start eating regular food, any modest weight loss is gained.

To support this, ABC nightline ran a story presented by Martin Bashir in which their own reporter went on the BPB plan. After 3 days of starvation and juicing, the reporter did lose 3 pounds that were quickly regained a couple of days after stopping the BPC. The reason for this is clearly stated on WebMd “One problem is that most of these detox diets are so restrictive that you can’t maintain them for long. Also, any weight loss is usually from fluid and muscle loss. You quickly regain weight once you go off the diet. Worse, especially if used long term, detox diets can cause harm.”

3 – Healthy Weight loss – Fad Free Juice Extractor There is no need to spend $70 or more on the overpriced Blue Print Cleanse. If you are looking to improve your health over the long term, a proper diet consisting of fruits and vegetables is the best way to go. Limiting the amount of sugar, fat and processed foods over the long term is what is supported by all the governing bodies of medicine. Although there are some clear benefits of drinking raw juices made from vegetables, your best bet is to invest the money you would spend on a 3 day cleanse on your own juice extractor. This method would allow you to have access to fresh juice daily which is more beneficial than any 3 day radical fast or cleanse program.

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Top 5 Anti Aging Myths

Since the Spanish explorer Ponce De Leon discovered the legendary Fountain of Youth over 600 years ago, Americans have been searching for ways to reverse or stop aging. This anti ageing quest has led to radical developments in plastic surgery, natural antiaging supplements, creams, potions and even hormone replacement therapy. The anti-aging industry has turned into a multibillion dollar health care sector that has proven to be recession proof. Below are some of the common myths regarding aging longevity. 1 – Vitamins have no effect in anti aging This myth is only true if you resort to vitamins or green tea once you have already aged. Vitamin C and Green Tea are both loaded with antioxidants which attack free radicals in the body. Vitamin C has also been proven to help support healthy collagen levels in the body. Collagen is a protein and normally is associated with muscles and tendons. As we age, collagen production diminishes giving the skin the sagging and wrinkle effect that most people want to avoid. Proper Vitamin C supplementation can be essential in reversing the aging and preventing facial wrinkles.

2 – Botox is best procedure to prevent wrinkles

Botox does nothing with regards to wrinkle prevention. Botox is a purified form of the deadly toxic botulinim. Doctors inject this toxin into the forehead to relax the wrinkles that are above the brow. Although relatively safe, there sometimes are some complications with this procedure. Botox injections are not permanent and have to be reapplied every 3-6 months. Once again, prevention and proper supplementation may be the better defense to prevent premature wrinkles.

3 – Antiaging Clinics and HGH are safe

Human growth hormone (HGH) is one of the fastest growing forms of antiaging being used in America today. The results are clearly exceptional for those undergoing this treatment. Users who begin HGH replacement therapy lose body fat, increase muscle mass, improve mood, clear skin and increase sex drive. Although results are impressive, there are some serious safety concerns with using human grown hormone treatment. Some of the side effects associated with HGH therapy are acromegaly, low blood sugar, liver damage, thyroid damage, heart enlargement, excessive hair growth and cancer. These side effects only make sense as you are introducing a growth factor into your body. The other dangers associated with HGH antiaging therapy is the source of the product. Since many USA made products can cost thousands of dollars a month, many often opt for products from China which may have life threatening quality control issues.

4 – Natural Supplements are not effective

Although there thousands of natural antiaging supplements on the market, very few of them have any true antiaging effects. The most popular and clinically studied antiaging supplements are those that are rich in Vitamin C, Green Tea and DHEA. DHEA is a precursor hormone produced by the adrenal glands. DHEA has been studied and proven at reducing belly fat, improving sexual function and boosting mood. Proper supplementation, skin care and healthy lifestyle may just be the safer approach than costly surgery or injections.

5 – Tanning makes your skin look better Although a tan does give some people more self confidence, the long term effects of tanning are terrible for the skin. The only health benefit associated with the sun is increases in Vitamin D levels. Increased exposure to sun spikes your risk for cancer, wrinkles, eye damage and immune function suppression. Using SPF protection is key in preventing skin damage and preventing premature aging.

In summary, there are treatment options on the market that can improve the appearance of wrinkles and aging. Your best is proper skin care, diet, exercise and supplementation in order to prolong the need for costly surgery or dangerous injections. Consult your doctor before starting any diet, exercise or supplement program.

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Top 10 Weight Loss Myths

According to the Center for Disease control, over 50% of Americans are overweight. With these staggering numbers growing, many people try various ways to lose weight, from fad diets to even weight loss surgery. Sifting through false information regarding weight loss can be difficult and at times overwhelming. Here is a list of the Top 10 myths on losing weight. Read the rest of this entry »

Cycling 101

cling is a great form of exercise that burns fat and calories without the high impact of running. Road cycling can be very beneficial at strengthening your cardiovascular condition as well as your core. These are simple tips to ensure safety, efficiency and proper cycling recovery. Read the rest of this entry »