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Labels should tell you how much exercise will burn off your food

nutrition trans fat panel 1329029 639x751Cold, hard numbers are hard to translate into real life experience, so they often lose their meaning. They are just too abstract. That’s why the calories per serving listed on food labels do not dissuade many people from eating them. Also, they can sometimes be misleading, as one small soft drink can be split into 2 or 3 servings, making the calorie count appear smaller than it actually is. 

So what if instead of the number of calories, food companies listed the amount of time it would take to burn off those calories through exercise? Walking at the reasonably brisk speed of 3 to 5 miles per hour and running at 5 miles an hour would be a great way to measure.

Just imagine. A sugary soft drink, listed at 138 calories doesn’t seem like a huge splurge. But when you take into account that you have to spend an extra half hour on the treadmill, it might give you pause before indulging.

Another example is a chicken and bacon sandwich, which rings in at 445 calories but requires one hour and 22 minutes of walking or 42 minutes of running to burn it off. And maybe you should pass up that blueberry muffin unless you plan on spending 48 minutes walking or 25 minute running to burn it off.

This sort of real-life representation might lead people to eat less in lieu of spending more time in the gym.  Because, let’s face it, we only have so much time and energy to exercise. You can’t burn off the sandwich, the soda AND the muffin you had for lunch, in just one sweaty session, without going super hard. 

We can call this innovative type of labeling, “calories with consequences”. And just maybe, it would make it harder to eat mindlessly and with ignorant bliss. Sure, this wouldn’t dissuade people who don’t watch their health or weight anyway, but for people who are concerned, it’s a much better way to communicate the consequences of what they are eating.

Of course, food companies are not too motivated to make this switch. Their aim is to sell you as much food as you can possibly eat. So if you are intrigued with this way of representing calories you can make the conversion yourself in your head. If 100 calories means 20 minutes of brisk walking or 10 minutes of running, you can do the math yourself. So next time you are eyeing that small bag of potato chips, that ring in at 171 calories, ask yourself if you are willing to spend an extra 31 minutes walking or 16 minutes running to burn it off?

Lastly, if you are interested in maintaining your health or weight loss, don’t just take calories into account. The quality of the food you eat is also very important. Eating sugary foods with fat but little protein or fiber, will stimulate your insulin response and cause your body to store more fat.

Besides, it’s all too easy to slurp down 150 calories of soda, but it’s a lot more work to eat the equivalent calories in baby carrots, as you’d have to consume 45 carrots in a sitting. That’s hard to do, even with yummy dip.

If you want to get a jump start on your nutrition check out our 21Day Complete Body Makeover Program which comes in Chocolate and our new flavor Vanilla.


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What Life Looks Like Without Sugar

sugar 1487238 639x423If you’ve experienced powerful sugar cravings in your life you know how addictive sugar can be. It may seem like an innocent addiction but when abused, sugar can cause as many health consequences as drinking or smoking. Sugar consumption has been linked to conditions like diabetes, heart disease, obesity and cancer, to name a few.
Consuming sugar is a part of our culture, so there’s a social and emotional component, but the craving is also strongly physical. When sugar is consumed on a regular basis our bodies demand it and make it hard to resist. When quitting sugar, just like other drugs, you get withdrawal symptoms.
Below are five things that can happen when you end your sugar addiction. But you may also find additional benefits like an improved mood and reduced aches, pains and headaches.
Benefit #1) More stable energy throughout the day.
Sugar is often used to boost energy, but it’s a self-perpetuating cycle that always ends with a crash. The crash is then repaired with more sugar. When your body gets sugar from fruits and starchy veggies it strikes a metabolic balance that magically quiets the screaming sugar dragon. Getting off the refined sugar roller coaster will stabilize energy and increase stamina. Initially you may feel like you have less energy but soon you’ll discover your body is great at manufacturing it’s own energy. You won’t believe how great you feel.
Benefit #2) Your weight will stabilize. If you’re carrying around extra weight you can’t seem to shake, those pounds will likely melt off when you give up refined sugar. Sugar effects insulin levels, which is the hormone that signals the body to store fat. So in contrast to popular belief, it’s not fat but rather sugar that makes people gain weight.
Benefit #3) Your digestive system will perform better. Giving up sugar is one of the best ways to improve elimination and digestive health. Don’t be surprised if those mysterious digestive symptoms go away with your sugar habit. Sugar feeds the unhealthy bacteria in your body, while fiber feeds the good bacteria.
Benefit #4) You will stop wanting sugar. This is the part that people don’t believe. The first few days can be so tough that people often get discouraged. The flu-like withdrawal symptoms and massive cravings pass quickly. In two weeks your cravings will end and you’ll have more control over what you eat. Eating sugar destabilizes blood sugar, which in turn makes you hungrier and crankier. Without added sugar in your diet it’ll be much easier to eat less and choose healthier options.
Benefit #5) Your skin will look healthier. Who doesn’t like healthy, glowing skin? Skin health is closely tied to your diet. Sugar consumption may cause breakouts, dull skin or in severe cases, itching and other skin problems. The skin is one of the body’s largest elimination organs and when overloaded with sugar and processed foods it has trouble eliminating fast enough and may get clogged up. Clean up your diet and your skin will thank you with a beautiful, clear glow.
With the 21-Day Body Makeover you’ll discover how easy it is to train and tame your sugar dragon. By feeding your body with the right kinds of carbs, healthy fats, nutrients and proteins your physical sugar cravings will completely disappear in one to two weeks. In those first two weeks it’s crucial to get the right structure to support you through the tough beginning. The 21-Day Body Makeover is designed to give you the support you need to navigate the hard part with minimal discomfort. It will only get easier from there on.
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Harmful Toxins Lurking in Unexpected Places

grass carpet 475928 640These days it’s hard to know where harmful toxins can lurk. Sometimes they can be found in unexpected places like playgrounds or athletic fields.  In 2014, NBC reported about the potential link between rubber crumb artificial turf and female soccer players diagnosed with cancer. A list was compiled of 38 soccer players who were diagnosed with cancer. A majority of the cases were leukemia and lymphoma.

There are currently 11,000 rubber crumb artificial turf fields in the U.S. with a cost of 1 million dollars to replace all of them. Rubber crumb turf is made from recycled tires and used to add traction for athletes and make play areas softer for children in schools, playgrounds and day care centers.  

Despite the NBC news report there was little response from federal agencies or the artificial turf industry to the story.

In March 2015, USA Today followed up by digging deeper. It found that there were lead levels in the turf high enough to potentially harm children. USA Today also reported that the two federal agencies responsible for regulating the turf continued to consider the product safe without taking action to intervene or investigate.

A year later, USA Today revisited the story to report that still no action had been taken in investigating the artificial turf. The spokesman for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), one of the federal agencies responsible for regulating the turf, refused to comment about the health ramifications of the artificial turf on camera.

The House Energy and Commerce Committee took notice of this report. They sent a letter to the EPA requesting an inquiry into the safety of crumb rubber fields. The EPA missed its November 6, 2015 deadline to report back.

But in late January 2016, two senators asked president Barack Obama to lead a comprehensive study of the turf. Three weeks later, three regulatory governmental agencies announced a study that will include 50 government employees and a $2 million dollar budget. The turf will be examined by scientists to see what chemicals they contain and if those chemicals could be released if someone came into contact with them.

Two years after the problem was initially reported, the parents, children and athletes that use this turf will finally have answers about turf safety.

The synthetic turf industry maintains that previous studies have shown all types of turf to be safe for human use. However, the Synthetic Turf council says it supports the study and the government’s efforts to settle this issue once and for all.

Coming into contact with toxins doesn’t always mean a disaster for your health. The body can excrete up to 2 pounds of toxins a day if the elimination channels are open. The best way to clear elimination channels is to do periodic cleanses.

Programs like the 21 Day Body Makeover allow the body to eliminate the build up of current toxins and easily get rid of future toxins. Try it today!





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Disturbing ingredients in Ketchup

ketchup 617231 640Ketchup is an innocent childhood foods that conjures comforting memories. While it’s made mostly from tomatoes, popular ketchup brands like Heinz have strayed a long way from their whole food roots. Despite being one of America’s favorite condiments, ketchup is a highly processed food with little nutritional value.
While no one thinks of ketchup as a health food, few people are aware that it can be downright harmful to health. Below are a few reasons to avoid commercial ketchup brands.
Conventional tomatoes are heavily laced with pesticide residue. It’s very important to choose organic ketchup if you want to avoid these hormone-disrupting chemicals.
High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS)
High fructose corn syrup is one of the most common yet dangerous ingredients found in processed foods and the standard American diet.
Doctors like Mark Hyman and Peter Lustig say that consuming too much high fructose corn syrup could either kill you or make you sick. Dr. Lustig believes HFCS is a driving force behind the staggering rise of type two diabetes among children.
High fructose corn syrup has been linked to heart disease, obesity, cancer, dementia, liver failure and tooth decay. And that’s in people who use it moderately. Not only does it spike insulin, but high fructose corn syrup is typically made from genetically modified corn.
High fructose corn syrup and regular corn syrup are the third and fourth ingredients in Heinz ketchup. While Heinz is the most popular ketchup brand in America, with 50 percent market share and an international presence in 140 countries, it’s clearly not the best choice for people who want to eat healthier.
Distilled Vinegar
Another troubling ingredient ranks number two on the Heinz ketchup ingredient list: distilled vinegar.
Distilled vinegar is great to use as a cleaning product for your bathroom or kitchen, but when consumed, it makes the body acidic. It can also cause hardening of the joints.
False advertising
In an effort to compete in today’s health conscious food market, Heinz advertises its ketchup as “all natural”. For this, Heinz was sued in a class action suit for false advertising.
There’s little that’s natural about Heinz ketchup. The corn syrup is GMO, the tomatoes are dripping with pesticides and there’s nothing natural about the last item on the ingredient list: “natural flavors”.
Healthier ketchup alternatives
If you can’t live without ketchup, find a high-quality organic brand that uses a higher quality vinegar and no high fructose corn syrup. Or you can always make your own ketchup and control the amount of sweetener that goes in.
And don’t worry about becoming a high fructose corn syrup medical statistic because you’ve been eating Heinz ketchup since childhood. Your body is designed to clean itself out with a little support. That’s why cleansing is so important, it’s the support we all need to clean the toxic ingredients from processed food out of our system.
Doing a comprehensive cleanse, like the 21-Day Body Makeover, helps reset the body and reverse past damage. The 21-Day Body Makeover is not a punishing cleanse based on deprivation, it’s full of whole food nutrients to nourish your body and lighten your load.
If you struggle with the inability to lose weight, dry skin, fatigue, cold hand and feet, high cholesterol or constipation you may be experiencing the symptoms of low thyroid function.
The thyroid is the gland that controls metabolism, determining the speed at which the body uses food as fuel. If you suffer from a slow metabolism or weight loss resistance, balancing your thyroid hormones may fix the problem, making weight loss possible again. There’s also the added bonus of alleviating the symptoms mentioned above, as well as additional symptoms.
Food matters. A high sugar, low fat, calorie restricted diet can throw off thyroid function. This happens when you rob the body of the calories it needs on a regular basis and disrupt blood sugar balance.
To heal from this, the thyroid needs a diet high in nutrients with enough calories to stoke the metabolic fire.
These are also some of the fundamental food principles that the 21-Day Body Makeover program is based on.
These are the principles that will rebuild your metabolism and increase your energy. Healthy weight loss is not about deprivation and starvation. It’s about giving your body what it needs to thrive.
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Misconceptions of Dietary Fat

coconut 648105 640There are a lot of misconceptions about dietary fat. Let’s dispel the biggest one. Fat doesn’t make you fat! Essential fat-based nutrients and fatty acids like Omega-3 are essential to the health of our brain, liver, heart and kidneys.
What’s most important is to choose oils that are stable, meaning that they don’t oxidize or burn easily. When oils oxidize, they form free radicals, which are harmful to your cells and can damage your DNA.
What are examples of healthy fats versus unhealthy fats? Canola oil is an example of an unhealthy fat. And a very healthy, versatile and stable cooking fat is coconut oil.
Unfortunately people are more familiar with using canola oil in cooking than coconut oil. But the following tips about how to use coconut oil will change that. The results of switching oils will be a reduction in inflammation as well as other health benefits.
Coconut oil is high in lauric acid, which can help balance cholesterol and has anti bacterial, anti fungal and antiviral properties to help get rid of unwanted bacteria and pathogens. Lastly, the healthy fat in coconut oil can help slightly boost metabolism and is better than other fats at increasing the feeling of fullness. Some studies have shown that coconut oil can even help the body burn more fat.
Coconut oil is also comprised of 90 percent saturated fat, which makes it the best choice for high heat cooking. It has a smoke point of 350 degrees Fahrenheit, which is much higher than most oils.
It can be stored on your kitchen counter without spoiling because the highly saturated fat content is not prone to oxidation. Coconut oil can also keep for a very long time without spoiling or going rancid.
Below are a few cooking tips that will help you overcome the quirks of cooking with coconut oil. Once you’re comfortable with using coconut oil you can replace other oils, butter and shortening with this miracle oil.
  1. Coconut oil solidifies at room temperature or colder. It will begin to liquefy at 76 degrees. Coconut oil will solidify if added to cold ingredients like eggs or milk. Bring the ingredient you want to mix with coconut oil to room temperature before you combine.

  2. To save money you can buy coconut oil in bulk and transfer a portion to a glass container to keep on the counter.

  3. One of the pitfalls of using coconut oil is that it tends to solidify. Instead of hacking at the solid oil to get a little bit out you can melt the oil and pour into a small ice cube tray and cool in the fridge. This way you can have small, 2-teaspoon portions of coconut oil pre-divided to easily throw in a pan for your cooking needs.

  4. You have the best chance of keeping coconut oil in easy to use liquid or soft form by storing it next to the stovetop. The heat from the stove will gently heat the oil and keep it soft.

  5. You can also whip coconut oil to soften it and make it easier to use.

  6. You can use coconut oil for things other than cooking. For example, you can keep a jar in the bathroom as a moisturizer or cleanser.

  7. You can even use coconut oil to clean your mouth. The ancient practice of oil pulling requires melting a tablespoon of coconut oil and swishing it in your mouth for 20 minutes to kill bacteria in you mouth.

  8. Not all coconut oil is the same. Virgin coconut oil is the best kind to use because it is the cleanest, least refined and has less of a coconut taste. You may see the label “extra virgin” coconut oil on your bottle. Don’t worry, that’s the same thing as virgin oil. The addition of the word “extra” is just a marketing term.
Coconut oil is the healthy fat recommended by the 21-Day Body Makeover program.
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