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Tag Archives: healthy

  • Can you be Healthy and Overweight?

    Let's begin with a definition of exactly what "overweight" is, because the term can be highly subjective. "Overweight" within this article refers to being classified as having a body mass index (BMI) of 25 or greater. The BMI calculation considers your body mass and height, and is most accurate for people without excessive amounts of muscle tissue (such as bodybuilders). While a BMI of 30 or more is classified as obese, this too would be relevant to being "overweight" under the context of this article. If you'd like to calculate what your BMI is, use our BMI calculator!

    Over the last few years, there has been a lot of media exposure promoting the benefits of a positive self-image and body-image. It's now quite popular for a current affairs segment to feature "plus size models", who are models that are technically overweight.

    With all this added exposure, it is often suggested that being overweight is "okay". And yes, this is perfectly reasonable advice. After all, you must love the body that you're in to really get the most out of life, whether you are overweight, underweight or within the normal bodyweight range.

    Psychology aside, what we are considering here is if you can be overweight and healthy at the same time. Upon considering all the positive "plus-size" features, and all the negative "skinny model" stories recently, being overweight is more socially acceptable than it was a decade ago. So it is therefore easy to infer that being overweight is healthy. Unfortunately, the research does not draw the same conclusion.

    Being overweight carries a number of physiologically related medical health risks. This includes an increased risk of:

    • Type II Diabetes
    • Coronary Heart Disease
    • Stroke
    • Cancer
    • Metabolic Syndrme
    • Sleep Apnea
    • Oseteoarthritis
    • Gallbladder Disease
    • Fatty Liver Disease
    • Pregnancy Complications

    Apart from these medical risks, there are lifestyle factors to consider too. If you're overweight, you'll find it harder to enjoy more physically active activities as a consequence of carrying around additional body mass. You may not be able to keep up with your kids, or may even sustain injury from being heavier than what a "healthy" BMI indicates.

    We must not dismiss the potential psychological ramifications considerations of being overweight. It is commonplace to feel "down" about being overweight. Whether it's to do with being disappointed with how you look in the mirror, or buying "plus-size" clothes, experiencing depressive symptoms as a result of your bodyweight is not healthy in any sense of the word.

    It's important to stress that there is nothing "wrong" with being overweight. If you are overweight then this is not something to be ashamed about. After all, we are all different shapes and sizes - and this is something that we should celebrate. The point of this article however is that you must not be mistaken into thinking that being overweight is healthy. It isn't - being overweight carries a number of health risks (physiologically and psychologically) and may negatively impact your quality of life.

  • Reviewing the Latest Exercise, Fitness & Health Science Research

    Last year, our website introduced a brand new Exercise & Fitness Research Reviews section in which we regularly discuss new and exciting studies that have been carried out within the scientific community. We feel that it is very important to consider the latest fitness research, as all our training principles that we teach are based on results obtained objectively through the scientific community.

    What I would like to discuss in this blog post is how to sift through the latest scientific research for your benefit in your health and fitness endeavours. There is often conflicting research that comes out of a lab, so how do you know what is accurate and what isn't? For example, one day you may hear that margarine is better than butter. The next day, a new study will conclude the complete opposite!

    At university I studied advanced science with a major in biotechnology. There were obviously a large number of studies that we needed to review and in doing so, it enlightened me as to the importance of taking one study at a time and never making any assumptions, such as any one particular study being correct over all others with conflicting conclusions.

    You don't need a science degree to understand the general concept of most scientific studies. However you do need to entertain each study with a fair degree of scepticism. Scientific studies are not perfect, especially those that deal with biology. Biology is such a complex topic; there so many simultaneous chemical reactions occurring with an organism that a scientist cannot possibly accommodate for every single variable. So, whilst one study may conclude that a particular training method may be the best approach for one particular goal, another study may conclude something different. This may be due to different testing environments, procedures, attention to detail, recording methodologies etc.

    I'm fairly confident that you probably don't wish to subscribe to a scientific journal and read through all the latest results from the lab. So the point of this article is to read abroad and look at multiple reports, rather than any one in isolation. If you hear something on the news that scientists have determined that "such and such" is the best way to lose weight - do your research before implementing this into your lifestyle. Yes, one study may have come to this conclusion, but there may be 100 others that disagree. Almost without exception, the media will portray scientific studies in a news bulletin in a highly biased manner without the reporter having done substantial research.

  • Surviving The Silly Season

    We all know the common phrase “eat, drink and be merry” but there is a way to do all of these things without wasting all of your hard work at the gym.
  • I have a severe allergy to nuts. Can you suggest alternatives?

    Snacking on nuts can be a healthy option for anyone undertaking a BodyBlitz challenge.  Unfortunately many people are allergic to nuts however.  Luckily there are plenty of convenient substitutes widely available.

    One of the most convenient substitutes available would be a protein bar.  If you are looking at adding in some more proteins and fats (as found in nuts) - a protein bar is often comprised of just that.  The down side to protein bars is that they often contain artificial sweeteners, so use in moderation.

    A can of flavoured tuna is often very convenient.  Pull open the lid, stick in a fork and away you go.  There are many great flavours to choose from - some with modest amounts of fat and others that are 98% fat free.

    If you're not particularly interested in seeking to increase our protein consumption, some muesli bars will be effective.  It's important that you take a look at what's actually inside these bars and whether or not this will assist you in reaching your goals.  Many muesli bars will contain high amounts of added sugar and other unwanted additives.

    Dried fruit is often a convenient substitute.  Many have a low to medium glycemic index (check out our Food Info section).  However they are extremely dense in carbohydrates (and thus calories) - so don't go overboard on these.  Fresh fruit is probably a better alternative - with many fruits having a low glycemic index, high in vitamins and a low caloric density.

    Even take a trip down to your local supermarket and visit the health food section.  There you will find many alternatives that might be worth a try.

  • What Is Good Nutrition?

    Now this might sound like a real easy question but what is Good Nutrition? Good nutrition can mean many different things to many different people.
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