Health and Fitness
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Latest Posts

Do You Really Require Vitamin Supplements

There are multi-vitamins that say they contain nutrients “from A to Zinc,” but do we really need all those vitamins in between? Contrary to what the supplement aisle may lead you to believe, you only need 13 vitamins to live and function properly. Vitamins A, C, D, E, K and the B vitamins (vitamin B-6, vitamin B-12, folate, biotin, pantothenic acid, niacin, riboflavin and thiamine) account for these necessary substances. Each one has special properties and come together to give your body what it needs to grow, remain healthy and renew

Now that we have learned what vitamins are needed which supplement has the top ingredients? Actually, we’re meant to obtain all our needed vitamins in the food that we eat. Supplement means “add to” or “accompany” and you should only take supplements under the recommendation and supervision of a doctor. However, it is still good to know what roles vitamins play and how we find them

Vitamin A, also called retinol or retinoic acid is essential for maintaining your vision, healthy skin and acts as an antioxidant. A good source of vitamin A is found in liver. Not the type to eat an animal organ? Choose an American cheese omelet. Dairy products and egg yolks are good ways of getting your fill of vitamin A

Vitamin C, clinically known as ascorbic acid is also a great antioxidant. Vitamin C also helps builds up your body’s connective tissue. Everyone takes vitamin C in the midst of cold and flu season because of its immunity boosting properties. So the next time you experience the urge to sneeze grab a glass of OJ. Vitamin C is found in most citrus fruits. At dinnertime, mix together spinach, tomatoes and green peppers for an unfussy side salad packed with this infection fighting essential

Vitamin D aids in helping your body to absorb calcium thereby promoting bone strength and fighting diseases that weaken your bones like osteoporosis. Consuming fortified milk products and saltwater fish like grouper, mahi mahi or flounder, will ensure that you’re never lacking. Excellent news for sun worshippers: Your body manufactures vitamin D when you are exposed to sunlight

Vitamin E, also an antioxidant supports blood flow and and facilitates in the body repairing tissue. Opt for a bag of peanuts the next time you take in a baseball game and you’ll be getting your daily dose of Vitamin E. You can also find plenty of vitamin E in green vegetables such as peas, beans, and broccoli

Thanks to vitamin K those annoying paper cut won’t bleed for days on end. Vitamin K is needed for blood clotting and in forming bones. Don’t worry too much the next time you eat half a pizza (or the whole thing) because both the tomato sauce and the cheese are rich in vitamin K

Finally, the B vitamins

Thiamin and riboflavin each help your body use carbohydrates and can be found in lean beef and whole-grain products. Niacin and B-6 assist your body handle protein and fats. Stock your kitchen with some tuna or salmon since both of these B vitamins are found in fish. Pantothenic acid aids in red blood cell production and B-12 helps keep cells healthy. Folate, also considered Vitamin B-9, is a crucial part in new cell growth. Bioton is needed for hair to grow and remain strong. You can find folate and bioton in most greens, beans, peas and seeds

Get Big Muscles By Training Alone With High Intensity Bodybuilding

Many trainees, or those looking to get big muscles and who have realised the best way to do this is with high intensity bodybuilding, often wonder if you can get big muscles by training alone and I have to say yes. This is, for me the preferred way to train.

I have paid my dues in Gyms over the years and for me they were far from ideal. Sure, there are more machines and lots of lovely members of the opposite sex (or the same) to look at but a lot of time is wasted. I love bodybuilding and after my extended lay off I can’t tell you the pleasure I now have again with the feel of a gnurled bar of steel in my hands and the deep soreness that comes after a set of trap bar deadlifts.

For me, although I love it, I want to get the job done and be about my business. Training in a gym for me was simply a time sink. Travelling there and back was only part of it. To get a good conditioning as well as big muscles you need to limit the time between sets and in a gym you can guarantee that more often than not you have to hang around waiting to use equipment. Either that or someone will interrupt you mid set or between sets to put you off your game.

For the price of a years membership to a gym, or less, you can get all the equipment you need to weight train at home. Equipment for weight training at home can be purchased very cheaply and for birthdays or Christmas then a set of barbells and weights can be requested to keep the price down if it is an issue.

Training alone is not without its problems though. For a start there are safety concerns. This is why I always recommend a cheap trap bar. You can then do heavy leg work in total safety and also get those massive traps that mark you out as a bodybuilder. Forced reps and the like are also more difficult although it is easy to go past failure when bodybuilding with a few tips and tricks such as cheating the bar up, which is very effective after going to positive failure.

There is also the fact that you cannot discuss methods with other bodybuilders, but personally I don’t see this as a bad thing. Most of what they have to say will be crap anyway and do nothing but confuse you. To know how to train properly all you need are the two books I recommend to the right and that is it. Much advice given out by others will do nothing but confuse or put you off what was already working.

Get yourself a cheap barbell and weights set, a trap bar and a bench and a power rack if you possibly can and you are all set.

If you do not have the money then I recommend that you get a weights set to start. Even without a bench you can perform dips between chairs or any right angles like kitchen counters and get just as big a chest. You just have to improvise if funds are tight. Get a chin up bar that you put between a doorway. You can then get a massive back without the need for much in the way of fancy equipment. Here you go, just looked on Amazon, less than 15 bucks. Click the image to take a look. A cheap chin up bar like that is a godsend for trainees without a power rack. You can gradually work up to a few sets and when you are strong enough just tie a few weights around your waist and get HUGE.

Is It Better To Train At Home Bodybuilding?

For me it is. All of us are different though. The one thing I will say is that if you just want to get down to business and train then you should get your own gear. You can get a cheap weights set for very little and this is invaluable if you are serious are getting big muscles and getting them fast. You can then train when you like and at the pace that suits you best. You can also simply go do a few sets as and when you feel like it.

You can’t do that if you have to go to the gym. Without doubt I would say get your own weights set for sale from the sidebar or from a local ad in the paper and get to it. Home weight training is especially important for those who may feel a little intimidated by going to a gym. If you are self conscious about your body then training at home means that you can bulk up without worrying what others think, although you really should take the attitude that anyone who looks down on you for whatever reason is a loser so their opinion does not count anyway.

Go get a weights set and start piling on the pounds and you will be glad that you just got on with it. The sooner you start high intensity bodybuilding the sooner you will totally transform your body to that of a strong and well muscled dude or dudess

Stand Up to Decrease Your Chance of Getting Cancer

As you read this article, you are probably sitting down, right? For many of us, it is a way of life. We sit all day at work, sit in the vehicle on the ride to and from the office, sit in front of the television to relax and the list continues. It seems as if all we do is sit. Well, now is the time to stand up and do something about it. Stop sitting around, and start moving.

People who spend the majority of their day sitting on their bums are prone to certain types of cancer that might not otherwise plague them. Spending too much of your day in a sedentary position can lead to a number of different health problems. From blood clots to heart disease, high blood sugar, an increased waistline, poor physical functions and potentially death, the list of health problems is quite extensive.

What cancers are linked to leading a sedentary lifestyle?

While not every type of cancer is linked to a sedentary lifestyle, endometrial and colon cancer top the list. Those who spend the majority of their day sitting have a 24 percent increase in getting colon cancer when compared to those who spent most of their day up and moving about. Sure, not every job is going to allow you to move about, but you can get up for a few minutes during the day to stretch your legs and move around. Keeping the circulation going is key.

Just how dangerous is the television?

Who doesn’t like to sit in front of the television and watch their favorite shows after a long day at work? Just about all of us wants some down time to relax and unwind from the stress of everyday life. However, that doesn’t mean we should sit there glued to the television for the majority of the day. Spending hours glued to the television can increase your chances of getting colon cancer by 54 percent.

One of the reasons why your chance of developing cancer increases when you sit and watch so much television is because people tend to consume a variety of unhealthy drinks and snacks while they watch their favorite shows. After all, who can sit in front of the television without having a delicious treat to fill their stomach at the same time? While some of us can refrain from sweet snacks and sugary drinks, most of us fall prey to this trap each and every time.

Start Cutting Your Chances of Getting Cancer

For every additional two hours you spend sitting on your backside, you are increasing your chance of getting endometrial cancer by 10 percent and colon cancer by 8 percent. Even if you do spend some time at the gym, you counteract the positive effects of exercise by sitting down for the rest of the day. Just because you exercise on a regular basis, it won’t counteract all of the negative effects that come from being a couch potato the rest of the time.

Instead of sitting around all day and doing nothing, you need to get up and start moving around. Try to move as much as possible during the day, even if you do have a job sitting behind a desk. There is always something you can do to keep the blood flowing and your heart pumping. In doing so, your chance of suffering from cancer will dramatically decrease.

Celebrate the Man in Your Life in June with National Men’s Health Month

With Father’s Day only a couple days away, you are probably gearing up for your big celebration. Did you know that June is also the home of National Men’s Health Week from June 9 through June 14? Since June 1994, men’s health has been a serious focus for many individuals. It’s time for men to make their health their number one priority. It isn’t going to do you any good to have loads of money, a fancy car, a giant house and anything else materialistic if your health is in poor shape.

If you don’t have oil in your car, it is going to break down. A well-maintained piece of machinery isn’t going to break down a lot. The same concept applies to your body. When you take care of it through exercise, diet and being knowledgeable, it will take care of you in return. Many of us don’t get enough sleep at night, but what we fail to realize is just how detrimental it is to our health. Inadequate sleep causes depression, obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

As you grow older, the amount of sleep you need at night changes. Adults require at least seven to nine hours of sleep, while children need almost twice that much. If you don’t get enough sleep at night, it can cause you to get rundown and feel miserable.

Have you ever sat back and wondered why your muscles are so sore when it doesn’t even seem like you are doing anything? You need at least a couple hours every week of moderate exercise. Do what it takes to get your blood flowing. Muscle strengthening exercises are crucial to your health as well. Don’t let your muscles fade into the abyss. Do something about it by exercising regularly and taking care of yourself. When you don’t use your muscles on a regular basis, you are going to end up losing them. Is that what you really want?

Even though it might be difficult to kick the habit, it is going to improve your health in more ways than you can imagine. When you stop smoking, you are going to dramatically reduce your chance of getting cancer, lung disease, heart disease and other illnesses. All of those around you won’t be subjected to secondhand smoke, which is better for them as well.

Many people aren’t aware of the fact that stress can kill you. Sure, everyone is going to have some stress, but that doesn’t mean you should be stressed out of your mind. Moving from one place to another in your own home causes stress in your body. If you get to the point where you feel as if you have no control of anything, you need to do something about it right away. Figure out how to quickly reduce your stress level. Take time to visit with family and friends. Do something to relax.

Make sure you go to the doctor once per year for your annual check-up. If you start having chest pains, shortness of breath or excessive thirst, you need to see your primary care physician right away. Don’t you want to be around to watch your children and grandchildren grow up? Of course, you do, which is why you need to take control now before it’s too late. By taking care of your health now, you can guarantee you will be around for years to come.

It doesn’t matter whether you are a father, grandfather, son, friend, brother or husband, you need to take care of your health to make sure you will be there for all of the special people in your life. Don’t delay.

5 Toxic Food Ingredients That Poison The Brain

For as long as many of us can remember, we have purchased antibacterial hand soap and body washes, believing that were beneficial to our overall health and cleanliness. However, recent research and an order by the FDA seems to show otherwise. It could also show that some of the ingredients in these products could be harmful with long-term use. The findings are causing many of us to rethink what we know about staying clean.

“Consumers may think antibacterial washes are more effective at preventing the spread of germs, but we have no scientific evidence that they are any better than plain soap and water,” says the director of the FDA Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, Dr. Janet Woodcock. “In fact, some data suggests that antibacterial ingredients may do more harm than good over the long-term.”

The Food and Drug Administration recently issued a press release regarding some of the ingredients in common antibacterial hand soaps and body washes. In the statement, the FDA states that they are ordering manufacturers to remove certain ingredients that were originally believed to kill germs.

In the press release, the FDA states, “The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today issued a final rule establishing that over-the-counter (OTC) consumer antiseptic wash products containing certain active ingredients can no longer be marketed.”

The ruling is regarding an investigation that dates back to 2013 targeting certain ingredients that may be harmful to the public. The FDA had received pressure from environmental groups and law makers regarding these ingredients and the effects they had shown in lab animals. The new ruling applies to 19 different chemical agents found in common antibacterial soaps. The most common of these were triclosan and triclocarban.

“Companies will no longer be able to market antibacterial washes with these ingredients because manufacturers did not demonstrate that the ingredients are both safe for long-term daily use and more effective than plain soap and water in preventing illness and the spread of certain infections,” states the press release from the FDA. “Some manufacturers have already started removing these ingredients from their products.”

Soap manufacturers will have one year to remove these chemicals and are no longer allowed to market products containing them. This is because the chemicals were found to be either harmful or to provide no additional benefits as washing with regular soap.

Triclosan is used in over 96 percent of products that are labeled as “antibacterial” or “antimicrobial” that are available in the market today. According to the FDA, this amounts to a total of over 2,000 different products, many of which are common in average American households. It is so common, in fact, that most Americans already have at least a small amount in their systems at all times. The Center for Disease Control recently published a study in which over 75 percent of the individuals they tested had triclosan in their urine.

Companies negotiated for extra time regarding the additional ingredients that were listed in the original query. The FDA has agreed to give them another year to provide adequate research that they are beneficial when added to normal soap.

“Under the proposed rule, manufacturers were required to provide the agency with additional data on the safety and effectiveness of certain ingredients used in over-the-counter consumer antibacterial washes if they wanted to continue marketing antibacterial products containing those ingredients,” the FDA states. “This included data from clinical studies demonstrating that these products were superior to non-antibacterial washes in preventing human illness or reducing infection.”

As far as the triclosan and triclocarban, the industry either provided no research or not enough to sway the FDA in its judgement. It appears as though they intend to spend their time on the other ingredients listed in the proposed rule. As to this judgement, the FDA states, “In response to comments submitted by industry, the FDA has deferred rulemaking for one year on three additional ingredients used in consumer wash products – benzalkonium chloride, benzethonium chloride and chloroxylenol (PCMX) – to allow for the development and submission of new safety and effectiveness data for these ingredients.”

The final ruling does not include these ingredients. The companies plan to develop additional research into the effectiveness of them and present it to the FDA within the next year. While this data is being collected, companies are still allowed to market and sell soaps containing them, as long as they do not also include the banned substances.

The research institution that will provide this research is the American Cleaning Institute. Although it does not directly represent the soap companies, it probably has their best interests at heart. The ACI states they plan to give up the battle on triclosan and triclocarban and focus on researching the beneficial effects (if any) of the other “antibacterial” agents like benzethonium chloride and PCMX.

Regarding triclosan and triclocarban, the FDA states, “For these ingredients, either no additional data were submitted or the data and information that were submitted were not sufficient for the agency to find that these ingredients are Generally Recognized as Safe and Effective (GRAS/GRAE).”

The original query was initiated when pressure was brought on by environmental groups regarding the possibly unsafe ingredients. This dates all the way back to 1978 when these groups– along with certain lawmakers– first began to ask questions about triclosan. The FDA was sued by the National Resource Defense Council (NRDC) in 2013, prompting the investigation.

Questions were initially raised when animal rights activists protested the use of the chemical on lab animals. Some testing had been performed using triclosan that had caused serious negative health reactions for the animals. Testing has shown that high doses of it seriously impacted hormonal productions and how the hormones worked in the body.

Although there is not yet proof that these chemicals have the same effects in humans, there was not enough evidence of their usefulness compared to regular soap and water for the FDA to allow their continued use. However, further testing is currently being performed and could possibly prompt further action. It is enough for many people to question whether they should continue to use the products. Especially when regular soap and water could be just as effective, the “antibacterial” types may not be worth the risk.

The current ruling only applies to hand soaps and body washes. Triclosan is still a common ingredient in many toothpastes. There is reliable research showing that it can be beneficial in killing germs that cause gum disease and other oral health problems. The ruling also does not apply to hand sanitizer.

“It is important to note that this FDA rule does not affect consumer hand sanitizers, antiseptic products used in healthcare settings, and antiseptics used in food handler settings,” said the ACI after the ruling was issued. “The FDA already has in its hands data that shows the safety and effectiveness of antibacterial soaps. Manufacturers are continuing their work to provide even more science and research to fill data gaps identified by FDA.”

The ACI and the soap manufacturers will continue to fight, and understandably so. The removal of triclosan and triclocarban alone will cost the manufacturers between $106.3 million and $402.8 million, according to the estimates. If they are unable to provide sufficient research to convince the FDA that the other chemicals are beneficial, one can only imagine the costs.

“Consumer antibacterial soaps and washes continue to be safe and effective products for millions of people every single day,” the ACI went on to say. “Antibacterial soaps are critical to public health because of the importance hand hygiene plays in the prevention of infection. Washing the hands with an antiseptic soap can help reduce the risk of infection beyond that provided by washing with non-antibacterial soap and water.”

While no one would disagree that hygiene is important to living a healthy life, this new information– or lack thereof– could change the way we think about it. Although these chemicals have not yet been proven to be necessarily harmful, this could really cause one to rethink what we use on ourselves and our children. Marketers have pushed the “antibacterial” line for longer than I can remember now, and it is unsettling to think that it may not mean much.

Although the cost for manufacturers to remove these chemicals may be high, it is nothing compared to the profits they make off of selling antibacterial soaps and washes. According to the National Resources Defense Council, Americans spend almost $1 billion dollars every year on these products.

Other ingredients in the products that are still being tested include triple dye, flurosalan, hexachlorophrene and several iodine complexes. Whatever those things are, they sound scary, and that is just a few of them. Whether they are harmful or not is still to be determined. However, there is no denying that regular soap and water still provide a safe and effective way to stay clean and healthy.

“Washing with plain soap and running water remains one of the most important steps consumers can take to avoid getting sick and to prevent spreading germs to others,” says the FDA. At least until new information is provided, maybe it’s best to stick to the regular stuff.