Fad Diets to Avoid

fadMost weight loss diets are actually fad diets that are repackaged to us as the newest and latest way to lose weight. A good example of this kind of resell to the public is the Zone diet. The Zone Diet sounded novel when it first came out but it is actually based on food combining principles from Asia that have been around for thousands of years. Another example is the South Beach diet which is based on the Stillman Diet from the sixties.

So how do you tell if a fad diet is a truly just a repackaged trend?  First of all if it is based on the way cavemen eat or on the foods eaten in the Bible it is likely to be a bit bogus. That type of diet is based on food deprivation and vegetarianism and both types of weight loss methods have been around for thousands of years. Basically if the diet is based on eating mostly protein and no carbs, carbs and no protein or no fat it is not a healthy diet.

It is also a fad diet if it is based on eating only one food such as a grapefruit only diet or fatty foods only diet.  You just don’t get all of the nutrition that you need eating this way. You need to eat a variety of foods in order to stay healthy.

The South Beach Diet, the Zone Diet and the Atkins diet are high protein low fat diet diets. These types of diets induce ketosis to accelerate weight loss. Ketosis is an abnormal body process that occurs during starvation. Ketosis causes fatigue, constipation, nausea, and vomiting, none of which are part of a healthy lifestyle. The long-term side effects of ketosis are documented to include heart disease, bone loss, and kidney damage.

Crash diets dehydrate you, low calorie diets put your body into starvation so you can’t lose one more pound and high protein diets stress your kidneys and clog your arteries.

unhealthy-diet-e1352873643736You do need both protein and fat in the diet as both serve important metabolic and physiological roles in the body. Fad and crash diets, such as the ones described above are not only unhealthy but they are also cause rebound weight gain. Also most diets cause an initial weight loss but the ultimate result is that you gain all of the weight back the minute you go off the plan.  If you don’t gain it back within a couple of months, you are likely to gain it all back plus a bit more within a year.

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Core Exercises to Lose Weight

coreCore strengthening exercises are also sometimes called abdominal-strengthening exercises. This is because when you strengthen the core stomach muscles you also strengthen the back and midriff. There are many benefits to having a strong core and one of them is that a strong core can help you lose weight.

The benefits of abdominal strengthening exercises are not just limited to helping you lose weight. They also ease the back and perhaps even get rid back pain and strain. Doing tummy strengthening exercises also keeps your organs in their rightful places and helps speed up weight loss.  They can also increase your all over flexibility as well as your ability to twist from side to side.

The stronger you abdominal muscles are the less likely you are to sustain a back strain or back injury or develop a hernia.  Although a trimmer waistline is a side effect of doing these exercises the real benefit is a stronger back. This in turn can allow you to exercise harder and longer. Of course the more you exercise the more weight that you will lose.

So just what are abdominal strengthening exercises? You might just know them as sit ups. Professional trainers also offer classes in gyms that employ the use of medicine balls or air filled exercise balls to perform abdominal strengthening exercises. You could also try taking a class like aquavit or Pilates to try and strengthen this part of the body as well.

Abdominal strengthening exercises may also be of some assistance if you suffer from back pain. Of course before embarking on any exercise program with the intention of trying to heal back pain it is important to consult with your doctor or a physical fitness expert first.

Remember not to go too far when it comes to core strengthening. Abdominal strengthening exercises can give you a washboard stomach complete with ripples but if you are not fond of this reptilian look then is sure to moderate yourself while you exercise.core1

However if you are really overweight you may be a long way from looking “cut” as the result of these exercises. Instead you just might want to get to the point where your belly does not look prolapsed as the result of weight gain. This simply means that your stomach muscles start to hold your organs in place like they are supposed to so you don’t look like you have a beer belly.

Weight Loss Exercise and the Elderly

elderlyIf you are older and trying to lose weight you cannot use the years that have gone by as an excuse for not exercising. Even if you are over sixty five years old and suffer from conditions that you think might prevent you from exercising you can still get fit.

Studies show that people with diabetes, high blood pressure, arthritis and heart disease need to get off the couch and start moving. The weight gain caused by being sedentary can make your condition worse.

If you are not sure if exercise is safe for your health or if you are currently inactive, check with your doctor before you begin any kind of program. This should also help with any concerns you may have about whether or not it is harmful for you to exercise.

You will also feel safer exercising if you are well prepared for it. Make sure you have had plenty of rest, that you have had enough liquid to drink and that you are well fed before expending any energy. Your clothes should fit right and be suitable for exercise and your shoes should also have good arch support so that your calves and feet do not get sore.

If you are sick or recovering or simply not been that active you should begin slowly. Start with the exercises that you are comfortable performing. Walking is the perfect activity to start with especially if you have not exercised in long time.  Starting slowly prevents you from getting sore and it also decreases your chances of overdoing it and straining yourself. It does not take much to begin an exercise program despite your age. All it literally takes is making that first step.

You need to of course check with a doctor about how much exercise you can get away with especially if you are recovering from an operation or have a chronic illness. However in general it is thought that doing some type of aerobic activity for at least half an hour every day will do wonders for keeping you fit. checkup old woman

Examples of aerobic activity are walking, swimming, and bicycling. You should also do resistance, or strength training two days per week unless you are advised not to do so by a physician. This type of training will help you burn off extra calories even while your body is sitting at rest. Furthermore weight training builds stamina and strength and is not as hard on the heart as the aerobic exercises which raise the heart rate.

Anaerobic Exercise and Weight Loss

anaerobic1Anaerobic exercise is the type of exercise that we otherwise call muscle building or weight lifting. It is the best kind of exercise to adopt in order to lose weight.

The term anaerobic means movements that are carried out “without oxygen.”  It allows muscles to bulk up and become very strong. This is due to the muscle fibers being forced to work harder because oxygen is not constantly being pumped into the lungs and fueling the activity.

This “without oxygen” term does not mean that you are not breathing when you accomplish the moves. A weight lifter still breathes when they are not in an oxygen deficit situation. When you exercise muscles aerobically you do not breathe heavily.

Aerobic exercises include such activities as cycling, jumping rope, and swimming, spinning on a stationary cycle, rebounding and running. You may breathe heavily doing these exercises to get your heart rate up.  Lifting weight does not accelerate your pulse in the same way.

Anaerobic exercises are used during training for non-endurance sports like boxing to build muscle mass. Muscles that are trained under anaerobic conditions develop in a different way than muscles that are training for duration (such as long distance running.)

Muscle training compels the body to use processes that are not dependant on oxygen to produce energy. It just means that you are not using as much oxygen as if you were jogging or swimming. All weight lifting exercises are classified as anaerobic in nature.  Many types of anaerobic exercises associated with weightlifting. However the most common types include working with pulleys, medicine balls and slant boards.

This is very unlike an aerobic exercise, which usually requires that the body travel unless you are using a training machine such as a stationary bicycle.  Almost all stationary exercise is anaerobic in nature.

Different types of anaerobic exercises can also be used as part of interval training. Interval training is a very efficient way to lose weight and build muscle. The combination of both exercises is effective way to lose weight and keep it off for good.

Practicing anaerobic exercises can help you build lean muscle. Lean muscle keeps on burring fat long after you stop exercising. This is why this type of oxygen free exercise is such an important part of an exercise program that has the goal of achieving weight loss.

Best-Push-Up-WorkoutLean muscle mass burns the most calories of any other tissue in your body. It can help you reduce your weight at a faster rate than aerobic exercise.  The other bonus is that lean muscle tissue keeps burning muscle for hours after you stop exercising which maximizes your overall potential to lose as much weight as possible.