Archive for September, 2012

The Top 5 Calorie Tracking Apps on the Iphone

Tuesday, September 25th, 2012

With so many cases of obesity these days, it’s no surprise that there have been concerted efforts by both government and media to highlight the health issues of being seriously overweight. It is indeed a problem with hospitals having to spend increasingly more and more of their budgets on individuals who are quite simply, too fat. The truth of the matter is that in the majority of cases, obesity is down to greed and ignorance. It has all become far too easy to eat in excess, as if gluttony is some sort of Olympic sport. With this lack of restraint in mind, we take a look at some of the best resources available via various iPhone apps which may be of some help in managing our diets.

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WeightBot

This is one of the most popular apps available due in part to its simplicity and ease of use. The idea is that you put in your weight and height and a BMI figure is subsequently provided. The app also has the quite nifty function where your weight loss is displayed on a graph with a 180 degree flip of the phone. Cost, £1.49.

Tap & Track – Calorie Counter

This is one of the higher end apps in terms of detail and also price as it doesn’t come cheap at £2.49. However it is well worth the investment as this is a resource which provides an extensive database of information with offline capabilities. There are great features such as ‘goal weight’ tracker and ‘nutrient totals’ all displayed in user friendly graphs for you to peruse at your leisure.

LIVESTRONG.COM Calorie Tracker

Not to be confused with the one above, this app has been developed in conjunction with the website of the famous cyclist Lance Armstrong. This one has the added feature of being able to reconcile your specific physical activity with the amount of calories burned so you will always know where you need to focus your energies. There is also the opportunity to take advantage of the various forum groups from the main website via the app.

The Eatery

This is a weight loss app with a difference as it focuses more on your meals as opposed to the calories in them. The facility allows you to take a picture of your food and share it with others so that you can gain an opinion on their worthiness. In effect this is an app which embarrasses you into eating less!

My Fitness Pal

With a claim of having the largest food database compared to all the other apps at 1.5 million, this one certainly has a lot going for it. What makes this app a winner is the fact that it’s also free which is even more impressive when you consider the amount of detailed information that is available. Incredibly simple to use, it allows you to track your calorie intake and weight loss as you work towards your goal. There are 300 exercises included in the database and you can also track cardio stats as well as a plethora of strength training routines. You can even get your friends involved and track each other’s progress for that additional motivation. There are too many features to note here suffice to say it’s a must have app on the iPhone.

Get them downloaded from your iTunes account today!

About the Author: Alfie Davenport loves mobile apps and his iPhone is full of new releases, when not spending all his time on his phone he works for Ladbrokes Online and loves his lifestyle entertainment!

Yoga for Seniors – Why Yoga is as good for Old Bones as it is for New

Monday, September 17th, 2012

Yoga is what you make of it: it can be as difficult or as easy as you want it to be. This flexibility, to pardon the pun, is what makes yoga so suitable for seniors. You are never too old for yoga as it is something that you can adapt to your changing body; it helps to strengthen your core and muscles, bringing you to a level of fitness that many seniors desire.

With so many ailments like osteoporosis and high blood pressure eroding at the quality of life of many seniors, it is no wonder that they seek to avoid pain by avoiding exercise. That is where yoga comes in: it is a low-impact alternative that can get your heart pumping, increase your joint flexibility and improve your quality of life immensely.

Here are 5 reasons why yoga is great for seniors, showing you that yoga isn’t just a fad for twenty-somethings.

1. Rejuvenate your joints

One of the most bothersome problems of advancing age for many are the stiffening joints, either coming about naturally from old age or from a condition such as arthritis. The best way to rejuvenate your joints is exercise, but as this is often painful at first many seniors don’t try. This does them more harm than good, leading to worse joints and worse pain.

As yoga is a low impact exercise, it is great for those who dread any form of movement because of joint-related pain. Slowly but surely, yoga can help loosen up your joints. This will help you become more mobile, helping you not just in your day-to-day life but also helping if you wish to branch out into other sports.

If you’re wondering what yoga poses are best for your joints, then you’re in luck. A good piece of advice is to try to do movements such as sun salutations. They are much less tiresome for your joints than static poses.

2. Respect your natural limits, and expand them.

Yoga is all about respecting your body’s natural limits: it will only harm you if you push further into a pose than your body allows. If you are worried as a senior that yoga will be useless for you because you are no longer very supple, then don’t worry. Even if you can’t sink far into a stretch, just stretching as far as you can is good for your body. You never know: the next time you try you might be able to stretch just that bit further.

It is through this gradual process that you can become more supple and flexible, and your stronger muscles paired with your stronger joints are going to work wonders for your mobility.

3. Combat high blood pressure

Many seniors suffer from high blood pressure, yet a high number of these often struggle with doing regular exercise that can help control it. Yoga has been proven to help combat high blood pressure, which in turn reduces your risk of heart attacks and strokes. People often underestimate how much yoga can get their heart pumping despite being low impact. This means that your heart is getting a workout while the rest of your body is under very little pressure. This is a great combination for seniors.

4. Do it anywhere and everywhere

If mobility or cost is a problem for you, then the best part of yoga is that once you have nailed the basics, you can do it yourself – anywhere. Whether that means rolling out your yoga mat and doing it in your kitchen or getting some yoga gloves and doing it in the park. Either way you’re guaranteed to be able to do it at very little or no cost and on your own terms. It’s great for anyone, but it’s especially great for seniors who struggle with money and mobility.

5. Yoga as part of a healthy lifestyle

Yoga can work great as part of a healthy lifestyle because it actively encourages people to eat fresh food, live sustainably and generally be as healthy as possible. If you are looking for an exercise that fits well into your lifestyle, then yoga has no rival.

So that is it! if you’re a senior and you want to get just a bit more active, then take a look at yoga. It’s a great way to get in a bit of healthy exercise without straining your body too much. It could be just the key you need to turn back the clock and rejuvenate your life.

Guest post from David V. guest writer of Yogapaws, a yoga poses blog and equipment shop online.

How to fight Vitamin K Deficiency

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

Did you know that you might probably be deficient in vitamin K? If you’re wondering what vitamin K is, don’t worry because you’re not alone. Experts consider vitamin K as the “forgotten vitamin,” since its many benefits are overlooked.

According to vitamin K experts, many Americans are deficient in vitamin K. Although they receive a good amount of it from the foods they consume, they do not get enough that will help carry out its many functions in the body.

Vitamin K deficiency is known to affect your bone, brain, and oral health. This deficiency is known to affect those who:

  • Follow poor dietary choices – People who eat more processed foods than organic vegetables are more likely to be deficient.
  • Have health conditions that interfere with nutrient absorption – These are often digestive problems and can also affect other nutrients.
  • Have a liver disease, which can interfere with the storage of vitamin K
  • Take antibiotics, cholesterol drugs, and aspirin, as these drugs affect your digestive system

In order to avoid being deficient in this vitamin, you need to know the types of vitamin K and where to find them.

What Are the Types of Vitamin K and Where Can You Get Them?

There are three forms of vitamin K. Among the three, one is unsafe, according to experts. It is best to know more about the three types to avoid taking the wrong kind of vitamin.

  1. Vitamin K1 – Also known as phylloquinone, vitamin K1 is found in plants, mainly in dark green leafy vegetables. When consumed, vitamin K1 goes directly to your liver. This form of vitamin K is also needed by infants, as numerous are born deficient. Research states that vitamin K1 can be found at low doses in breast milk.

    As mentioned before, vitamin K1 is found in cruciferous vegetables. Good sources of K1 are collard greens, spinach, salad greens, kale, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts. To get the recommended amount of vitamin K1, you need to consume more than one pound of collard greens every day.

  2. Vitamin K2 – This vitamin, also called menaquinone, is produced by beneficial bacteria found in your gastrointestinal lining. Sadly, it is not absorbed well inside your body and may just be eliminated from your stool. When taken and absorbed effectively, this nutrient travels directly to your vessel walls, bones, and tissues, apart from your liver.

    You may supply your body with K2 by consuming lots of natto, a Japanese fermented soybean dish. Vitamin K2 in natto is formed during the fermentation process. Another source of vitamin K2 is fermented cheeses, such as blue cheese and curd cheese.

    Unlike vitamin K1, K2 has various forms, which are MK4, MK7, MK8, and MK9. Among the four types, only MK7 has the most significance, as this has the longest life inside the body. To get sufficient amounts of vitamin K2, you need to consume at least 15 grams of natto daily or half an ounce. The good thing about fermented foods is that they’re very inexpensive and can be found in many Asian health food stores.

  1. Vitamin K3 – Vitamin K3 is also known as menadione. Unlike the other two types of vitamin K, vitamin K3 is a synthetic form and can be obtained through injection. However, experts warn against having vitamin K shots, as there have been reports of toxicity upon the use of the synthetic form of the nutrient.

Before you decide to take a vitamin K supplement, it is important to note that this vitamin is fat-soluble. It is important to accompany it with a dietary fat for maximum absorption. If you wish to know about the right dosage or are taking anticoagulants, it is best to consult your physician.

 

About the Author:
Brent James Louvre keeps a blog about proper nutrition and is currently writing a series of posts on nutrient deficiencies. His latest article is about vitamin K deficiency, as well as about finding sources of vitamin K1 and K2. For aspiring cooks, he also shares recipes of fermented dishes, salads, and entrees. He also creates Web articles on fitness from time to time.

5 Exercises You Can do at the Office

Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

Sometimes, fitting exercise into your busy schedule can be one of the biggest obstacles to getting in shape. However, there are five easy exercises you can do at the office to keep yourself fit without taking too much time out of your day.

Leg Lifts

Number one is leg lifts. You can do these while you wait for the copy machine. Leg lifts involve keeping one leg straight on the ground. With your other leg, you simply bend your leg at the knee to lift it off the ground. In this position, swing you leg forwards and backwards for about thirty seconds. Once this set is complete, you switch legs and do the same motion on the other side.

Leg Toners

Number two is leg toners, which you can do under your desk. For this exercise you sit up straight in your chair and hold your abdominal muscles tight. Then, you extend one leg to hip level and hold for ten seconds. You can repeat this fifteen times and then switch to the other leg. This exercise not only strengthens your leg muscles, but it also works out your abdominal muscles.

Exercise Ball Chair

Number three is to simply replace your office chair with an exercise ball. This will allow you to work out your abdominal muscles all day without ever having to leave your seat. The ball will force you to use your abs while sitting and take the stress off your lower back.

Water Bottle Lifts

Number four is water bottle arm lifts. This exercise can be done with your own water bottle while you sit at your desk. Simply grab your bottle, sit up straight, and do an equal number of bicep curls on each arm. Alternatively, you can raise the water bottle above your head for an overhead press. The water bottle is a quick and simple replacement for a dumbbell so you don’t have to bring any weights from home.

Calf Raises

Number five is calf raises. For this exercise all you need is a desk or table to keep you balanced. To start off, you will need to stand behind your chair or desk and hold onto any surface. Then, rest one leg behind the opposite calf and raise yourself up on your toes. Repeat this about twenty or thirty times and repeat switching legs. This exercise will really tone up your calf muscles with just a little effort.

Finding ways to exercise during the day does not have to be as difficult as it may first appear. Doing any of these simple exercises can help you get into shape without even leaving the office.

This article was contributed by CompressionStocking.co, the leader in support hose.