30 Day Paleo Challenge: Is It Worth It?

 

So, there have been some pretty crazy diet plans out there that promise a healthier lifestyle with great weight loss potential. Among these crazy ones is the 30 Day Paleo Challenge, which has a diet consisting of the consumption of foods that our prehistoric ancestors may have once consumed. The diet consists of the modern interpretations of some of the food that was consumed during the paleolithic era. The diet focuses on some pretty natural foods like fish, and meats that come from grass fed animals. You are prohibited to eat stuff with refined salt and sugars as well as bread, potatoes, and stuff with unnatural oils. The diet literally involves you consuming stuff you would either have to hunt for or gather. The diet also requires that you do some semi intensive workout throughout the diet to balance out your caloric intake. Seems like a challenge, but some critics think that the paleo diet may also be a fad diet, or at least a very inefficient one. Some critics argue that the lack of research into the diet leave several questions regarding long-term health risks since you’re cutting off certain foods such as dairy products. Another issue is the fact that it is extremely difficult to replicate a “true” paleo diet with modern foods since a lot of what we have is processed in one way or another. Truly lean meats and natural veggies are very expensive to get too, so trying this diet out will require that you are willing to burn a couple of extra bucks to get what you want.

Super Bowl Running

It may be tempting to watch, but try for some fun runs too!

 

The Super Bowl is coming within the next week, so many football fans and enthusiasts are going to be busy getting ready to tailgate and party. But, if you’re the kind of person who likes to be active instead of loafing by a TV, or you didn’t manage to get your tickets, then try the Super Bowl Day 10K run and 2-person relay. If you’re in the Sacramento area during this time, register now here and enjoy a nice scenic run through the beautiful campus of CSU Sacramento. There will be other events to try out other than the 10k, such as the “Future Star’s 40-yard dash” and meeting Detroit Lion’s running back, Jahvid Best. You’ll even get jersey-formatted shirts for your runs and there will be post-run tailgate parties so you can enjoy Super Bowl Sunday. However, if you’re looking for a more local running event closer to LA, check out the Redondo Beach Annual Super Bowl Sunday 5k and 10k. This event will be equally promising, as it will provide of a day good fitness and fun. There will be live music and following the race, there will be costume contests that you can participate in and enjoy. The page for registration is here, so feel free to try your skills here if you’re closer to Redondo Beach. Overall, if you want to have a fun Super Bowl Sunday without gaining a few pounds, definitely check out these events and have fun.

Studies Show that Yoga Balls Might not Work

Lots of bloggers swear to yoga chairs being extremely beneficial for your spine and general health. However, research shows that the back pain reducing alternative to a chair might have little to no benefit to ones health.

The claimed benefits of switching from a typical desk chair to a yoga ball chair include forcing proper spine alignment, balance improvement, and a good ab workout.  Regarding the ab workout, apparently the changing balance when seated forces  your abs to compensate for the shift. Though this may be true, the cause is the pain that comes up from the increased back discomfort that occurs from the change in balance. In a study conducted at the University of Waterloo, researchers found that the only activity that was occurring on the body was an increase in muscle activity in the lower back muscle and increased discomfort. Other studies have shown that yoga balls don’t actually improve posture. According to a research at the  University of Teesside School of Health and Social Care, the subjects that sat on a yoga ball typically did not have better posture, but instead had to constantly alter their posture to compensate for the balance.

The best choice for reducing your back pain is to make sure you stand upright for a few minutes at a time. An Ask Well article, where you can also find more detailed research, suggests standing upright every 15 minutes per an hour sitting.

 

The Green Coffee Fad, The Facts

If you haven’t noticed already, there are tons of weight-loss “miracle” pills made from extracts that can either block fat from the body or put your body in an incredibly efficient fat burning state that will just “melt” the fat away. Among these weight loss miracles is the green coffee extract pills, which can supposedly prevent weight gain and help burn fat. However, recent lab experiments may provide observations that may disprove this weight loss supplement. ACS, a recognized scientific membership organization, released an article in June providing evidence that the key proponent in green coffee bean, Chlorogenic acid (CGA), does not actually promote weight-loss as previously thought. An experiment was done on lab mice to test the effects on CGA with weight loss. According to the experiment, the mice did not react any differently to the CGA when put on a high fat diet. Also, the mice that were subjected to CGA had a higher chance to develop disorders that leads to type 2 diabetes.

Of course, more studies have to go down to finalize these observations, but as it stands, there seems to be little evidence to suggest that taking any green coffee extract will really help out with weight loss. Your best bet is to do research before committing yourself to any particular weight loss supplement. There are some out there that can benefit your weight loss, but the real work still comes from regular exercise and making sure you don’t over eat.

Juicing: The Basics

Juicing: Don’t let the fad sites fool you.

Juicing has been the topic of conversation regarding weight loss for some time, but aside from all the fad posts about juicing, is it really worth it? If done correctly, juicing has its benefits in terms of your fruits and veggies intake, but as a dietary option, you’re out of luck. Let’s look at the obviously positive aspects of juicing though. Juicing is good for the individual that either has a horrible time remembering to eat their fruits and veggies, or for those who simply hate the stuff. As we all know, fruits and vegetables have essential nutrients for our body, so its imperative that we eat them. What juicing does is that it gets all these fruits and vegetables and puts your daily servings in one whole glass, convenient right? Here’s the thing though, straining out the juices from these two food categories also effectively removes other minerals and vitamins that are also essential for our bodies and stuff like fiber, which is found in the pulp of fruits, is also taken away when juicing. So you’ll still want to consume some physical form of your fruits and veggies aside from the juicing to get the most of what you what. Another setback is the idea of juicing to watch your weight. If you are supplementing your current diet with juicing, you have to consider what’s being put into your juice concoction. If you’re splurging and tossing all the delicious fruits you want and omitting many of the essential vegetables, you’re racking up calories and reducing the nutrients you need. The most effective juice mix should be primarily vegetable based with one or two fruits of your choice as a flavor additive. One thing though, you CANNOT replace eating with JUST juicing; it’s a horrible idea. You need the stuff other foods give  you that juicing just can’t supplement essential stuff that meats and other healthy foods can give you. In conclusion, your best bet is to look at juicing as a supplement to your diet, just not your diet alone.

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