Consider wearing a pedometer! Numerous studies have shown that pedometer users not only increase their activity level, they also enjoy the benefit of weight loss and lower blood pressure. This small, inexpensive device measures the number of steps or the distance you walk each day. It tracks both structured exercise and everyday activity. One mile is usually 2,000-2,500 steps, depending on stride length. Start sensibly and gradually increase your steps or distance.
Celiac disease is a common genetic auto-immune disease. At this time, the only known treatment for celiac disease is strict adherence to a gluten-free diet for life. Gluten is the protein found in wheat, barley and rye. Signs and symptoms of the disease classically include diarrhea, iron-deficiency anemia and lactose intolerance (the inability to digest milk and other dairy products). Symptoms can also include abdominal pain, "irritable bowel," and osteoporosis. Talk to your doctor if you have symptoms of celiac disease. For more information visit: http://americanceliac.org/resources.htm
Finding workouts that fit your personality can improve the odds that you will continue to exercise. If you're competitive, consider trying a team sport such as basketball. If you're playful or creative, try dancing. If you enjoy being alone, solo hikes, runs or bike rides may be your cup of tea. Whatever your personality, try to find activities that keep you motivated.
Americans spend billions of dollars each year on bulk herbs and herbal products, but this does not mean they are always harmless. Although many come from natural sources, "natural" does not always mean "safe."
Some herbs can interfere with prescription medications. Others may be safe for most people, but just like prescription medications, unsafe for specific individuals. If you are thinking about trying an herbal product, play it safe. Consider discussing your interest with your primary care provider before purchasing any herbal product. Get the facts and make informed decisions!
The American College of Sports Medicine recommends adding stretching to your overall fitness regime to maintain or improve your range of motion. At least 10 minutes of stretching the major muscle groups, two to three times per week can dramatically improve flexibility. If you are a beginner, gradually incorporate just a few stretches into your day—at work, before bed or after your morning shower. Stretching is most effective when your muscles are warm.
Serious and recreational athletes alike are returning to a childhood favorite—chocolate milk-in place of more common sports drinks. When pitted against commercial sports recovery drinks, several new studies have found that chocolate milk is the superior beverage when it comes to post-exercise recovery and fluid replacement. Chocolate milk is 90 percent water, so it's ideal for rehydration. It also has the perfect combination of carbohydrates and protein to refuel a tired athlete's body and it's packed with many other nutrients including calcium and vitamins A and D.
One important way you can lower your risk for heart disease and stroke is to keep your LDL or "bad" cholesterol level down and your HDL or "good" cholesterol level up. If you have a family or personal history of stroke, heart disease or high cholesterol, try to keep your LDL below 100 mg/dL. The good cholesterol should be at least 40 mg/dL but higher is better, and 60 mg/dL or greater gives some protection against heart disease.
Changing a behavior is not always easy. It can partly depend on believing in your ability to do the behavior and what you're asked to do. For example, you might strongly believe in your ability to walk for another five minutes per day, but have no confidence that you can eat two servings of fish next week. Behavioral scientists call this belief in your own ability to succeed self-efficacy. One way to strengthen your self-efficacy is to set small, achievable goals.
Success with smaller goals can greatly improve your ability to take charge of the larger ones.
Thinking of buying one of those ab machines or other ab gadgets as seen on TV? Abdominal and back exercises are important for a strong, healthy core. However, you don't need special equipment. Research has found no difference in muscle activity between basic crunches and exercises done on top-selling ab machines. Bottom line: You don't need to spend money to get an effective ab workout unless using a device helps to motivate you. If you do decide to buy something, an exercise ball offers an excellent way to work your core.
Everyone benefits from exercise and physical activity. Studies show that exercise is safe for people of all age groups. In fact, in older adults, the benefits of exercise far outweigh any possible risks.
Research suggests that exercise and physical activity can help older people maintain or partly restore strength, balance, flexibility and endurance—the four areas vital to staying healthy and independent.
Exercise can help one feel better and enjoy life more. Check with your physician first before becoming physically active.