SO…I’m back in Sydney and gearing up for Spring, it’s only just around the corner, so now is the time to really start thinking about reassessing your fitness & health goals in time for summer – especially if you want to hit the beach looking your best! Again I’ve put together some interesting facts & figures for you to help motivate & inspire you. First some FACTS!!:-
University of Southern Queensland: has released (another) list of foods that will best help you fight off Obesity, I say …it certainly wouldn’t hurt to add these to your diet if they’re not already there – especially the Olive Leaf – it really is an amazing plant – it contains the phyto chemical ‘Oleuropein’, which is said to have way more anti-oxidant properties than Green tea! It will assist combatting viral infections, colds, boost your immune system and support cardiovascular function. In regard to weight loss , it’s the anti-inflamatory properties which were shown to be most effective on rats tested with abdominal fat, glucose intolerance and fatty liver – human trials are to be held later this year.
Also on the list is the old staple – green tea, but also purple carrots, onions and Chia seeds – the latter are also high in anti-oxidants, omega 3 fatty acid and protein – add them to your IsoWhey smoothie, salads, or savory foods, even though they’re from the mint plant family, they do not have a strong taste at all.
24% –the percentage of artritis sufferers who use complementary or alternative medicine to help treat the condition – wow, this is way too small, especially as glucosamine has been shown to be so effective in this area.
21 – the number of minutes a day, on average Australians exercise, this is down from 27 minutes in 1997 – and guess what has gone up – right – obesity levels…whats happening out there – WHY is this message not getting across??
Walking – up two flights of stairs is actually quicker than taking the lift – you might want to point this out to people you see getting out on the first or second floor – unless they’re bigger than you!
HOW much water should we be drinking each day ? – the figure that EVERYONE says is 8 glasses. This apparently came from an American research paper back in 1945, however it is being said that this is NOT based on actual medical evidence, in fact drinking too much can be dangerous by causing low blood sodium levels. Our bodies are so advanced our thirst mechanism should tell us when we need water. I guess government organisations have to have some actual constant figure to quote, so it may as well be 8! I personally find it hard to do this and rarely do. However, being hydrated IS very important, for our brain (which is around 80% water), our skin, and to help with hangovers! If you’re exercising it’s really important to replace what you are losing & of course if you are sick (especially vomiting or diarrhea), if your in a dry environment or a hot & humid one – you MUST keep hydrated. I say listen to your body, drink as much as you can, aim to get your urine as clear as you can during the day – also don’t forget that you can also hydrate by eating your vegies & fruit – even more than drinking water.
Think yourself thin! – now this one is interesting, Ghrelin is a ‘hunger hormone’ – telling us when it wants us to eat. The study gave 2 sets of people the same protein shake, but 1 group thought it was HIGH in calories, the other half thought it was a LOW calorie drink. Interestingly the group who thought they’d OVER indulged had lower levels of Ghrelin i.e they would feel less hungry after consuming the same drink! Look, this is interesting to the point that it shows that weight loss is not simply about just what you eat and how much you exercise – there are actually LOTS of other factors at play – & we can never underestimate the power of the mind, however the practicalities of the report – I say – are rather limited, we cannot simply all go around convincing ourselves that we’re eating fatty foods if we know we’re not!!!
Last, but certainly NOT least…Australian researchers at the Southern Cross University have done quite a unique study – they examined participants reaction when given a kangaroo meat as opposed to wagyu beef – and the difference was quite bizzare. The beef seemed to activate the immune system into triggering the release of inflammatory chemicals.
Firstly, why choose these meats? Simple, humans were more designed to survive on natural lean meat much like kangaroos, which are active animals who eat grass. Beef on the other hand tends to be ‘raised’ for human consumption, cows are less active and often grain fed. The main problem is that chronic inflammation is being linked to many diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, Alzheimers and….obesity.
How? – Fat cells produce inflammatory ‘messengers’ (cytokines) – these chemicals eventually stop the body properly reacting to two other important hormones called Insulin and Leptin. Simply, when the bodies cells become resistant to insulin, blood glucose will be stored as fat as opposed to being efficiently transported to the muscles to be utilised as energy..leading to a higher body fat % – Leptin’s role is to tell the body when we are full, of course if this is faulty, it can lead to people overeating and again to weight gain. So what to do? Avoid foods that promote inflammation, sugars and saturated fats and move towards..you guessed it…vegies, wholegrains and fruit...just like we were designed to all those years ago!!