Archive for May 30, 2011

This Memorial Day, Celebrate Our Servicemembers!

This Memorial day, make sure you celebrate and remember our servicemembers. Their sacrifices have allowed us to enjoy our freedom. Take a moment between your barbeques and celebrations and remember the true meaning of memorial day. To the brave men and women who have given everything, we SALUTE you. We will never forget!

 

 

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If Your Health Isn’t a Priority, What is?

Each year over 600,000 people die of heart disease. It’s the leading cause of death for both men and women. (cdc.gov)

Many people go through extreme measures to keep their homes safe from burglary and themselves safe in cars but do absolutely nothing to keep their bodies safe from preventable chronic illnesses. It is time we get serious about this!

Saying, “I don’t have time,” is actually saying, “It’s not a priority.” If your health isn’t a priority, what is? Take a second to reflect on what you do make time for. Are you texting during times that you could be exercising? Are you talking on the phone when you could be jogging? Are you watching television when you could be watching television and working out at the same time? Is it possible that you have decided that the new gossip on Grey’s is more important than getting control of your health?

Hypertension or high blood pressure is called the silent killer because about 1/3 of the people with it, do not know they have it. Some people completely avoid the doctor or that blood pressure monitor in Walgreens, because they are afraid to know the truth. Are you one of them? Just because you don’t know, doesn’t mean it won’t kill you. Hypertension is the leading cause of heart disease and stroke. Although it is silent, it is easy to detect by having your blood pressure checked. It is also one of the very few risk factors of heart disease and stroke that is treatable.

So how do you treat hypertension? First, have your blood pressure checked at least once a year by a doctor. The rest is quite simple. Start eating a healthy diet, stop smoking, exercise often, and reduce your salt intake.

So why don’t you have time for your health? Think about all the family and friends who love you and don’t want to lose you to such a preventable illness. Do it for yourself and for them. Start right now. Not tomorrow, not in an hour, RIGHT NOW!

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Tired Of Being Tired? Listen To Jack!

He lived to be 96 years old! We can all learn from the legend.  The advice he was giving nearly 50 years ago still applies today. When will we as a nation decide we are tired of being obese? Take it from Jack. Exercise and eat right to bring longevity and vitality to your life!

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Throw Out the Scale…

…Well at least for a moment. If you just started dieting and exercising, the scale won’t have any good news for you. I have had countless people ask, “Why am I not losing weight, it’s been a week and I’ve been working hard?”

Weight is arbitrary, measurements and the “look” tests are more logical.

Instead of always checking the scale, measure your waist, thighs, and arms. As you workout more and more, you will find that your weight will fluctuate. Your measurements, in contrast, improve as long as you stay focused on your fitness.

Take a look in the mirror. Take pictures of yourself every two or three weeks. This will give you a better gauge of your progress.

Believe me, constantly stepping on the scale only provides a couple different results; a false sense of weight loss, or a small gain that’ll cause you to want to give up. Be patient about the weight and just keep trudging along and working hard.

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My Low Sodium Journey At The Deli

Low sodiumA while back I was at the deli. I had made a conscious effort to really treat my body like its a “Temple.” Now I’ll be the first to admit, I do slip up every now and then. Sometimes you just need to upgrade to the Grande White Mocha rather than a plain cup of Joe.  So I’m at the deli. I am browsing the selection of meats, when I come across an oven roasted turkey by Sara Lee. The package reads “20% less sodium.” This is great I tell myself. I’ve already grabbed a low-fat low-sodium cheese and I scoured the shelves for whole-grain wheat bread with the lowest amount of sodium I could find.

As I was about to toss the turkey into my basket, the lady behind the counter says, “we have a low-sodium no preservatives Turkey from Sara Lee.” I respond by telling her “I already grabbed it.” She counters by saying, “No, it’s the kind I can cut up for you and it’s 40% lower sodium with no preservatives.” I followed her over to where they slice the meats and sure enough, there was a small label that read:

Sara Lee Oven Roasted Turkey / 40% lower sodium / No preservatives

 

The lady at the deli proceeded to slice me a sample. Now let me tell you what. I may have tricked myself into liking it because of the healthy label, but it sure was good. The best part, it worked out to be a few cents cheaper than the packaged stuff.

While I was standing there another customer asked for oven roasted turkey. The deli lady (sorry, wish I had a name) asked if she wanted the low-sodium version. This customer responds by saying “No thanks, I like my sodium. If I wanted real turkey I would cook my own.” Now I know what you’re thinking. Surely I had to make that up. Nope! I couldn’t believe it. No wonder so many Americans suffer from hypertension. The healthy choice was there for her to grab. She didn’t even have to go out of her way. It wasn’t more expensive. Yet she still chose to go that route. Makes no sense to me.

Is it even possible to taste the difference between the two. Maybe. But I assure you, the low-sodium version did not taste like cardboard. The sad part is she probably took it home and fed it to her children.

Enough small changes in your diet will gradually add up to make a vast difference. If I eat 5 to 10 sandwiches a week, the numbers really start to add up. Think about this next time you go shopping. If you can make healthy cuts on each one of the ingredients then the final creation you digest will be something your “Temple” can be proud of.

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Be Creative. Stay Fit!

Are you always finding reasons not to work out? Are you constantly saying “I dont have time“? You need to be more creative. Look for times in your day when you are sitting or standing around and try to incorporate a few minutes of something physical. Have you been sitting at your desk too long? Take a break and knock out a few exercises. When was the last time you took the kids to the park? Did you just sit there and watch them? In the following video I show how easy it is to stay fit with a little creativity.

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Chasing The Scholarship!

Youth soccer has become the most popular sport in America.  Children are starting recreational leagues as young as three years of age.  As for competitive soccer (travel soccer) teams are being fielded as early as eight years of age.  Why so young?  Currently, there is an epidemic about earning a “full ride” scholarship, if your child doesn’t start by the time they walk, they are missing their opportunity.  This thought process is resulting in injuries, burnout, and taking the fun out of a game.  Youth sports should be a time when families become closer, exercise and eating habits are formed, and social skills are developed.

People who are treating youth sports as an economical investment will eventually learn that very few get any sort of value on their return.  An average season (registration, gas, food, time, etc) can run from $1,500.00-$10,000.00 depending on how many events your team attends along with the distance traveled. (added costs: flights hotels).  At this point, you (the reader) can do a cost average of what you might spend over ten years.

 For someone who is new at youth soccer, I would say that an average of $3000.00 a season is a very conservative estimation over a ten year period.  This means that you the parent will have invested $30,000.00 on your child’s soccer career.  This is a great investment if you get a “full ride” for $120,000.00, but you need to ask yourself, how many people do I know have full athletics scholarships?  Usually, that answer is “a lot” because scholarship stories are like stories about catching fish; they grow bigger and bigger as time passes. 

 So here is a simple solution I have for all of you who are reading this article.  Ask to see it!  It’s not rude to ask to see someone’s scholarship; a scholarship is like a trophy, the owner should be proud to show it.  If you take my advice, and ask to see someone’s full athletic scholarships, you will soon learn that it’s more the exception than the rule.  When this realization is achieved, you as a parent won’t feel obligated to drive thousands of miles, spend thousands of dollars, and apply an enormous amount of pressure on your child.  Instead, you can do what youth sports were created to do, bring families closer, provide a healthy lifestyle, and create friendships.

Steve Aristotelous is a youth and college soccer coach who holds a Master’s Degree in Sports Science. Steve has coached and trained  hundreds of athletes who have gone on to sign scholarships to some of the most prestigious soccer schools. Steve has also been named Coach of the Year by 4 different governing organizations.

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“Sooo… Mommy Will Live Longer Than You”?

One day I was sitting at my desk working on a PowerPoint presentation for an upcoming class. While adding information regarding The Aging Process, my daughter came over and sat on my lap. She glimpsed at the computer screen and noticed the title Life Expectancies for Men and Women.

 “Men live to be 75 and women 79,”? She asked.

 “Yes,” I replied.

 “Sooo… Mommy will live longer than you,”? She asked, seeming concerned.

 “Yes,” I replied.

 “AWESOME!” She yelled, and then jumped off my lap to run and tell her younger sister the great news. “Taylor, Taylor, guess what?”

 ….A mother’s love is instinctual, unconditional, and forever.

Recently I came home to find my 10-year-old daughter in the backyard shooting hoops. She enjoys hoops but if given the choice, she would much rather play the Harry Potter game on her DSI. When I went out to shoot around with her, I asked what made her decide to go out and play basketball.

“Well mommy said I had been playing on my DSI long enough and I needed to do something active. It was basketball or jogging with you,” she explained. “I chose basketball.”

 I’m so proud of her.

Lately I have also noticed my wife placing more and more fruits and vegetables out in the open at home. I love how cognizant she is of our daughters’ health and well being.

….A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of a cheesecake for five people, promptly announces she never did care for cheesecake.

Who among us can remember their mother ever finishing a drink, dinner, or dessert? I can remember countless times my mom giving me or my brother the last drink of orange juice, spoon full of gumbo, or piece of cheesecake. She also gave me a stern look when I got out of line.

Moms wear so many hats and we as dads often take for granted the many responsibilities they assume. I realize there are so many of you out there, and thought it would be a nice time to salute you and say, “You are truly the foundation of the family. You hold it together through stormy weather and over the years you never wear down.”

 ….The most important thing a father can do for his children is respect their mother. 

On this day dads, remember all the sacrifices moms have made and the ones they will continue to make in order to keep the family smiling.

To our moms and mother-in-laws: You have done a great job with your daughters, teaching them to be the great mothers they are today. I am sure I speak for all your son-in-laws when I say that even though we get busy and don’t always get the opportunity to acknowledge you, we see you every day through our wives eyes. They are beacons of all that you have accomplished.

 To all the mothers out there: You truly deserve to be celebrated 365 days a year!

Signed,

Demitrius Snaer and Dale Hancock

healthyfitfamilies.com

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Do Not Try This At Home!

Here at HealthyFitFamilies.com we are huge supporters of youth fitness. However, we highly recommend that you do not allow your children to misuse exercise equipment. Here is a quick video which shows how dumb some kids can be. Luckily for him he gets up and walks away. This could have been much worse. Although a bit funny, where were the parents when this took place. Probably behind the camera. HaHa!

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Fast Food = Love-Hate Relationship

Do not eat greasy fatty foods!Why does fast food have to taste so good? Am I the only one that feels this way? There is something absolutely wonderful about a large, fresh from the grill, dripping with cheese, double patties burger. Those crisp steaming golden fries that are gently topped with salt are tremendously tasty. Then to top it off, you get to wash it all down with a delicious fountain soda that seems to taste better with every sip.

With all that being said, let’s get something straight. Fast food and I have a love-hate relationship. I love fast food! Fast food hates me! This is why I made the decision a long time ago that we needed to break up. It was tough in the beginning. After realizing that there were many others options out there I had to move on.

Like many relationships, the two of us had a ton of drama. I was nothing but nice to my fast food. Fast food on the other hand treated me like crap. Have you seen what it can do to the body? (And that’s on the outside) It should be locked up for domestic violence. Obviously this relationship was not healthy. Literally!

Here are the numbers for a Big Mac Meal with large fries and Coke:

Calories: 1350
 
Calories from fat: 480
 
Fat: 54g
 
Cholesterol: 75g
 
Sodium: 1420g
 
Carbs: 194g
 
Sugars: 95g
 
According to the Dietary Guidelines For Americans 2010, an adult female’s estimated calorie needs per day range from 1,800 to 2,400 calories per day depending on age and activity level. For men the range is between 2,000 and 3,200 calories. Obviously the higher end of the range is for those who are more active and burn more calories throughout the day.

Let’s use a 31 year old woman with a sedentary lifestyle for example. It is estimated that she requires about 1,800 calories to maintain caloric balance. She will naturally burn about 1,800 calories and therefore should consume that number to maintain the balance.

If this same woman were to eat the above mentioned Big Mac Meal then she would have consumed 75% of her estimated calorie needs in one sitting. This would leave her with only 450 calories to consume in that day before she exceeds her balance. A positive imbalance in calories will result in weight gain.

This is why fast food can be so devastating to the body. It chews up a huge number of your daily calorie needs and leaves you with very little wiggle room to maintain your caloric balance. Fast food can also affect your overall health.

Most fast food options are high in calories, fat, and cholesterol. If you also add a fountain drink to your meal then your sugars have just gone through the roof.

According to the American Heart Association, there are several factors that increase a person’s risk for coronary heart disease. The following are several of the factors that you can control:

Tobacco smoke
 
High blood cholesterol
 
High blood pressure
 
Physical inactivity
 
So you want to limit your chance of a heart attack or stroke do you? Then it’s easy. Don’t smoke, workout regularly, and don’t eat greasy fatty foods that are high in sodium and cholesterol. (Stay away from your unhealthy relationships with fast food) Weight gain and potential health risks are not what I’m looking for in a food option.

You may love Fast Food, but Fast Food does not love you back. Now get out there and Train Your Butt Off!

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