Is the Middle of the Day the Best Time to Exercise?

There’s a lot of speculation as to the optimum time of day to reap the most benefits from exercise. A recent study, however, shows that our muscles may respond best in the middle of the day.

Get Your Groove On

No matter what any study reports, exercise will be beneficial any time of day. As long as you show up and do the work, your body will love you for it. This information from this particular research will help those wanting to reap maximum benefits from a workout—whether you’re someone who hits the gym four times a week or if you’re a seasoned athlete.

Circle, Canadian, Cartha…What?

Researchers at Northwestern University discovered that cell metabolism is regulated by a person’s circadian rhythm. Your circadian schedule is basically your 24-hour inner clock. It informs your body when it is awake time or sleep time (and vice versa.)

It turns out that muscle tissue also responds to this inner clock. Energy efficiency, then, peaks for each individual (human) during the day. As part of the research, they studied nocturnal animals and their muscle responses. For them, logically, their finest hours of energy efficiency were in the middle of the night.

Breathing, Awake Muscles

As we carry on throughout our day, our energy levels will be more efficient than in the evening, for example. That’s not to say that you can’t workout at night. You can. And even then, your body’s metabolism will remain faster for hours afterwards. It’s just that burning energy and oxygenizing muscle cells won’t be at their peak.

It appears that muscle cells can utilize energy best (in humans) in the daytime. Exactly what time will vary according to each person’s personal circadian rhythm.

Muscle Performance

It’s true that if you workout in the morning, you will reap the benefit for hours as your day continues. Exercise raises your metabolism.

The researchers of this particular experiment believe that when your muscle cells are optimally oxygenated, the perks of exercise are even greater. So, depending on the time of day, along with glucose and then the generation of lactic acid, your workout could be fantastically phenomenal.

Other Benefits

Although this theory will require further studies, it’s an interesting look into how to possibly manipulate oxygen and sugar levels in muscles. That is something that could eventually lead to an alternative approach to treatment for diabetes.

It could also become a strategy for serious and professional athletes. Finding out their optimum time of day when to train could increase their performance potential.

Regardless of if you exercise for personal fitness, or if you push your body for sports or other training, taking the time—whatever time of day—is what’s most important. Get the job done.

Yoga Is A Way To Explore Strength, Peace, And Harmony

The origins of yoga are shrouded in mystery, from its oral teachings to its historical text.  Dating back at least 10,000 years, it was practiced by religions, which may have had a foundation in Hinduism.  So why are we so fascinated by yoga and what makes it extremely popular in today’s society?

Yoga is no fitness fad, it’s a way of life and an outlook that many follow.  It was first introduced to the western world in the 1880s, as historical teachings.   Much later, it was expanded to include physical practice in the 1950s.  From that time to the present, yoga has grown in popularity, with many types of yoga to suit different lifestyles and needs.  Breaking down its methodology gives an overall view of its benefits:  karma yoga (action), to jnana yoga (wisdom).

ACTION

Many turn to yoga looking for physical accomplishment and possibly body transformation.  Soon realizing that yoga is much more than just the physical action.  The practice has many styles, some of which include Iyengar, which focuses on precision and anatomical alignment and Vinyasa, which is a fun form of yoga poses, to rhythmic pattern.  Yin yoga, is also very popular today, focusing on lengthening and conditioning the body, whist calming the mind.  This yoga is great for those who want to master both patience and inner physical strength.   Bikram yoga, commonly referred to as hot yoga, was born out of traditional hatha yoga.  This form of action yoga is currently very prevalent with the practice room heated to a balmy 95-108˚F.  The heat is believed to cleanse, focus and warm the body, so strengthening and lengthening the muscles is easier.  Action yoga in general claims many health benefits, some of which include:

 

  • Strengthening of body core and muscles
  • Weight reduction
  • Enriched organ health
  • Increasing spine flexibility
  • Easing arthritis
  • Improving balance
  • Regulating metabolism, while improving digestion

WISDOM

Although yoga combines physical and spiritual strength in all its teachings, wisdom yoga is the mental segment of yoga.  An example is Himalayan yoga, which is based in sacred texts and Vedic knowledge.  To crudely put it, this is a collection of sacred mantras and hymns.  Recited aloud, these mantras/hymns are an ancient comprehension of the scientific makeup of our planet.  Today we could categorize this as philosophy.

 

Osho is a form of wisdom yoga that uses meditation techniques to rid the ego and escape modern day pitfalls of self centeredness and materialism.  Restorative yoga focuses on healing and relaxation.  Many of these practices have been used to develop modern day yoga classes, one of which even includes a laughter class, which focuses on its benefits as a therapeutic release.  Wisdom yoga and its practices, have been used in schools, to calm and focus children’s attention.  In the workplace, wisdom yoga can help center creativity and enlighten thought.  Many of the claimed health benefits for this type of yoga include:

 

  • Stress relief
  • Greater personal energy
  • Focus
  • Happiness
  • Self Confidence
  • Creativity
  • Freedom of inhibition

 

Making time for your own body and mind is crucial, so why not become a “yogi” (a playful term endearing someone who practices yoga).  Whatever the stated health benefits are, yoga is a way to explore strength, peace, and harmony in today’s high pressure society.

“Namaste”.

To read more about yoga, check out GetThrive.com

 

 

Is Your Body Resisting Weight Loss? Use Resistance Training!

Women don’t generally associate weight loss with weight lifting, but resistance training will help shed the pounds. Along with slimming down, using weights can provide other health benefits too.

Resistance Training is not training yourself to resist eating that piece of cake. (Although you can lose weight that way, too.) Lifting weights, using machines, or even using your own body weight are all part of the resistance movement. Losing weight will happen, but there are several other health advantages as well. Here are 9 solid reasons to start strength training today.

1) Burn Calories. Bunches will burn as you create lean muscle mass. Your body will use calories more efficiently. For hours after you train, your body will continue to burn calories, even if you’re sitting.

2) Increase Metabolism. During and after weight training, you consume extra oxygen. When your body uses more oxygen, it burns more calories. This requirement for more fuel (calories) forces your metabolism to increase to feed your muscles. The advantage to an increased metabolic rate is that it burns fat faster.

3) Strengthen Your Heart. Resistance training can lower blood pressure for up to 12 hours after each workout. Those who lift weights lower their risk of developing heart disease because: it reduces waist size and lowers triglycerides and glucose levels.

4) Sculpt Your Bod. Cardio can help you lose the puff, but it won’t necessarily add shape to your muscles. Using weights will help you create definition in different muscles. Say goodbye to upper-arm flap. Say hello to a tight booty.

5) Save Your Bones. Muscles and bone mass begin deteriorating as we age. Resistance training prolongs the inevitable and aids in keeping your bones and muscles strong. Your risk of osteoporosis also becomes decreased.

6) Improve Your Sleep. Weight training helps you fall asleep more easily because your stress is reduced. The quality of sleep is also improved and deeper. You may even sleep through the entire night without waking once.

7) Improve Your Balance. Resistance training strengthens your muscles and your core. Good balance is predicated on strength. Better balance, less falls and possible injuries.

8) Your Clothes Will Fit Better. Muscle weighs more than fat. But fat takes up more room. You might weigh more, but you will appear thinner because of your lean muscles.

9) Improve Your Memory. Older adults who practice resistance training appear to have improved memory and cognitive function. Who says an old dog can’t learn new tricks?

The thought of resistance training may frighten or intimidate you. You will not get bulky. You won’t hurt yourself (unless you overdo it.) It may be the key that unlocks the weight-loss door for you.

Ask a trainer for assistance or watch a video when it comes to weights. Using your own body as a weight you can do pushups, squats, and planks. Try it for a while and watch your body and mind transform. For other ways to improve your health with workouts, check out www.GetThrive.com

 

Running from Cancer, Did You Know that you can Significantly Reduce Your Risk of Getting 13 Types of Cancer?

Are you getting at least an hour each day of physical activity? How about 30 minutes of moderate-level activity five days a week? Or at least 20 minutes of intense workout three days a week? If yes, congratulations! If no, then you are not meeting the recommended minimum weekly exercise requirements—just like more than half of the American population.

Exercise boasts results such as: mood improvement, weight loss, hormone balancing, increased metabolism, clear skin, lower blood pressure, and the positive list goes on. But now, researchers have discovered that the more often you exercise, the less likely you are to develop 13 different types of cancer.

The National Cancer Institute conducted a study over the course of approximately 11 years. Researchers focused on 1.4 million participants, how much they exercised, and whether they had been stricken with some form of cancer over the duration of the study.

JAMA Internal Medicine recently published the findings: over 186,000 cases of 26 different types of cancer had evolved. Here’s the good news—the people who exercised more frequently had a lower risk of getting 13 of those recorded cancers from the study.

The greatest reduction of risk (in those who worked out a good amount of time and with moderate intensity) was in esophageal cancer. A person who exercises regularly has a 42% less chance of getting it than someone who doesn’t exercise enough.

Other types of cancer where the risk was lessened was: liver, lung, kidney, colon, bladder, and seven others—including breast cancer, which had a 10% reduction risk.

The study also concluded that even taking yoga classes or walking quickly counted as forms of exercise. As mentioned, the researchers remained focused on physical activity as a possible deterrent to certain forms of cancer. Whether the participants smoked, drank, or engaged in unhealthy eating habits were not factors regarded in this particular trial.

The Centers for Disease Control want to remind the public that although 150 minutes of exercise per week may sound like a lot, it’s closely equivalent to the amount of time spent watching a movie or an evening of television. And, the upside is that workout time can be spread throughout the week (as long as some vigorous movement occurs at least three times or more.) Move with energy, stay healthy.

 

Tips for Staying Healthy in a Chaotic World

Attempting to achieve the American dream may be proving to be a health nightmare. In our unrelenting effort to make ends meet, we usually wind up burning out.

It’s not until we get sick or come down with some frightening illness that we stop and reflect upon our day-to-day behavior. The classic adage applies more than ever: If we don’t have our health, we have nothing. So, what are we going to do to change?

First off, our priority must be our health and wellness. That includes how we eat, sleep, exercise, and also attend to our emotional and spiritual lives. If that statement scares you, it’s probably because you think it’s going to be too hard or too expensive. Yes, it will take commitment and discipline—but so does everything in your life that matters.

To truly succeed, it’s necessary that you place you and your loved ones’ health in the number one spot. So with that said, here are some tips for making your transition simple and enjoyable, not worrisome or costly.

Food

Make a shopping list of all the foods you know (or have read) to be healthy. That would include fresh produce, whole grains, and lean meats. Read labels and stay away from anything that has sugar or corn syrup as a primary ingredient. Keep dairy to a minimum.

Plan to make all your meals at home until everyone adapts to your new eating lifestyle. Look online for yummy recipes to motivate yourself. Worse case scenario, you throw a bunch of greens, fruits, a scoop of almond butter, some yogurt, lemon-water, and ice into the blender.

It takes five minutes and it’s a nutritious full meal. If you stick to a good-food plan, you won’t be able to go back to fast-food or junk; your body won’t let you. It will re-learn how to crave proper nutrition.

Sleep

As adults, genetics and heredity play a part in the “perfect” amount of sleep for each individual. Research, however, estimates that we need, on the average, eight hours per night for best health.

To achieve this with a hectic lifestyle, make your evening restful. Have a cup of chamomile tea, read, stretch, practice yoga, meditate, do what you can to provide a calm body so that you can fall asleep quicker and more deeply. Refrain from using a computer or Smartphone in bed.

If you think you can’t find enough time for a long sleep, trade-in something else you do that isn’t nearly as important (think: Candy Crush, Facebook, TV, reading gossip columns, etc.).

Exercise

Just assume that everyday you are going to get exercise. In an ideal world, we’d have an hour each day to do some aerobic activity, weight training, and yoga. But since most of us can’t achieve that, think of exercise simply as “movement.” Take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator.

Get off the bus an exit early and walk a few blocks. Use some of your lunch break to go outside, walk, and breathe fresh air. Chase your kid around the dinner table. 10 minutes of jumping jacks, push-ups, and a few planks is better that no minutes of nothing. What’s most important is making regular physical activity part of your lifestyle.

Peace of Mind: Not everyone wants to meditate. Although its benefits have been scientifically proven to reduce stress, increase attention span, improve metabolism, and help you sleep better, you don’t have to do it. How about sitting quietly and taking deep breaths?

Give yourself permission to be alone. Explore how you are feeling. Pay attention to all parts of your body while you are still. Focus on relaxing and dispelling any negative or anxious thoughts.

Even in five minutes, you’ll feel rejuvenated. If you can try that for 20, all the better. Eventually, you will learn how to do this (and check in with yourself) even with your eyes open, in a room full of people. Let yourself feel calm, joyous, and full of gratitude. There’s nothing like that recipe for a healthy vibe and body.

Your fear of trying something new or making changes should pale in comparison to the fear you’ll experience when your health starts faltering. Being proactive and taking the best action to keep your body healthy really matters more than anything.

 

 

A Patch That Reduces Fat?

Patches placed on the body are an innovative, effective way to disperse medicinal treatment into the body. Some of the oldest existing records of man expressed use of transdermal patches to treat ailments and promote healing. Now, scientists are experimenting with patches that may actually dissolve fat!

Feel the Burn

Researchers have been experimenting with safe ways to treat the effects of obesity in a variety of ways. Horrifically, in 2015, more than 700 million people were classified as obese, with over 2 billion reported grossly overweight. Obesity leads to cardiovascular disease.

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in both men and women.

Obese and overweight bodies contain pockets of unhealthy, white fat. A process, called browning, converts white fat to brown fat. Browning happens when, for example, the fat is exposed to very cold temperatures. Researchers at Columbia University Medical Center have conducted experiments on mice using medicated patches to convert pockets of white fat into brown.

The Benefits of Brown

Brown fat cells produce heat and burn energy. White fat cells store calories and create unhealthy pockets in many places around the body. “Love handles” are basically a pouch of white fat cells.

Brown fat is pretty recognizable in babies. In adults, it’s difficult to detect the brown cells because they often mix-in with the white; however, those with lower BMI’s (body mass indexes) tend to have more visible mitochondria-packed, brown fat cells.

Brown fat has the ability to burn calories and increase metabolism. It’s for these reasons scientists have been trying to find various ways of drawing upon these particular fat cells to combat obesity. Researchers at Columbia University Medical Center have recently designed a skin patch that converts white fat cells to brown.

Fat-Reduction Experimentation

This particular study out of Columbia University, published in the journal ASC Nano, was conducted on mice. Medicated patches placed strategically on white-fat-cell areas “browned” most of the cells. The fat in the intended areas (where the patch was placed) burned the white cells and transformed them. This is a remarkable step in the possibility of manipulating cell transformation.

The not-so-positive take-away from this experimentation is that, quite often, animal study results are not often replicated in human studies. Co-leader and cell biology expert LiQiang explained that there are already drugs that promote browning. The problem is that they affect the entire body, not just the intended area. The side effects from these injections can cause bone fractures and even weight gain. Focusing on the specific areas of accumulated white fat cells is the key. A patch may the most effective and safe form of browning implementation.

Regardless of the promising success this patch may have, it is still incredibly important to self-monitor food intake. The quantity and quality of the foods and drinks we ingest affect our overall wellbeing. An unhealthy diet increases our risk of heart disease, obesity, type-2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and even premature death.

For tips on leading a healthy lifestyle (which includes clean eating), check out our other reported research on GetThrive!

Sources:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4403087/

http://pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acsnano.7b04348

http://www.cnn.com/2017/06/12/health/global-obesity-study/index.html

https://www.livescience.com/49652-what-is-brown-fat-facts.html

 

 

 

The New Meaning of “Fast Food”

One is Too Much

According to EatClean.com, just one high-fat, sugar-saturated fast food meal can alter your body negatively. Your artery walls narrow by almost 25% within two hours of eating junk food! This brings a whole new meaning to “fast food”.

Nine Days or Less

Studies showed that the metabolisms of twelve healthy, college men changed in just five days of eating only high-fat foods. Your metabolism, when slowed takes you longer to burn calories, and can zap you of energy.

Puff Daddy

In addition to creating inflammation inside your body, the exterior is also affected. Your skin, especially on your face gets puffy. Eating well is simple, delicious, and better for your entire body.

 

Losing Sleep May Pack on the Pounds

If you are trying to lose weight, you’ll need to monitor your stress levels and get an adequate amount of sleep. Many experts have reported the connection between sleep loss and weight gain; now a new study shows a link between sleep and gut microbiota.

Stress, in General and in Sleep

It’s incredible how much stress affects our good health. As we read everyday, stress can deteriorate our bodies, minds, and happy spirits. And if you live it, you know it first-hand.

There’s no wonder that stress-reduction remedies abound such as: meditation, yoga, essential oils, therapeutic techniques, and even medications. It’s definitely not a positive state of being and kudos to anyone who can manage keeping high anxiety at bay.

The worst part is that stress may be keeping you from a solid night’s rest. Sleep disturbance and insomnia often partner with worry. This is where weight issues enter the picture…

Stress and Weight-Loss Resistance

The most common source of weight gain is from overeating. When you get stressed, your body releases the hormone cortisol. Cortisol is a fight or flight chemical, and it encourages an adrenaline rush and vice-versa.

Your body, from the surge of hormones, thinks it’s used up energy and encourages you to replace them. That’s why you get hungry. Sometimes when we’re anxious, we’ll eat for comfort. But truly, your body will often think it needs calories and you’re just responding to its request. The problem is, you haven’t really burned any, so here’s where the extra weight comes in.

Even if you’re eating a proper diet and exercising, chances are your body won’t let go of any of the weight—it wants to hold onto the fat because it’s in survival mode.

Stress and Sleep Deprivation

The more sleep you miss out on, the higher the cortisol levels in your body. It’s kind of a vicious circle—stress makes you sleepless, yet lack of sleep will stress you out.

Besides your increase in appetite, testosterone production decreases from an increase in cortisol output. Testosterone builds muscle; when your muscle-mass depletes, your metabolism slows down. Slower metabolism equals more weight gain.

Swedish Study of Sleep and Gut

A small study conducted by Uppsala University researchers was recently published in the journal Molecular Metabolism. The scientists set out to discover if sleep deprivation affected levels of microbiota in the gut.

What they discovered was interesting; sleep loss did change the levels of microbiota in the gut, but not the diversity of it. More interestingly, was that they observed the change to look a lot like the microbiota discovered in studies of obese and Type-2 diabetes individuals.

Chronic sleep loss can be associated with changes in the microbiota. The researchers emphasized that gut microbiota is complex and affects so much of how our body functions—it can’t even be absolutely and definitively characterized. Bottom line, sleep loss negatively impacts our metabolism.

Keep working on managing stress so that it doesn’t invade your all your waking and sleeping hours. Here’s to good rest and a satisfied and satisfactory belly.

For more articles on new study updates, check out www.GetThrive.com