Category: Health & Fitness

7 Factors to Poor Posture and 2 Steps You Can Take Right Now To Better Your Own

Have you ever noticed a famous actor, known for their good looks, maybe Brad Pitt, standing stooped over? Of course not! Part of the appeal is their tall, proud posture, whether you consciously notice or not. Perhaps that’s why no childhood is complete without an occasional reminder to “Sit up straight!” Your mom was training you to become a Hollywood star.

While the desire for your own good posture could be due to the effect that poor posture has on your visual appearance, it may surprise you that posture has much more to do with whether you look proper or sloppy. Let’s look at another type of celebrity – a singer such as Adele, and try a little experiment on yourself. Sing your favourite song, or the national anthem with your shoulders rounded forward and head stooped down. Your whole chest caves in and prohibits your lungs from expanding and your voice from belting out those big musical notes. It’s much harder to sing properly without good posture. Remember Usain Bolt, the fastest human? Do you think he’d run as fast and place as well if he kept his head down?

If you’re concerned with your health you should know that the way you carry your body physically can have a major impact on your physical performance and mental sense of well-being. Studies are now showing the connection between poor posture and health problems ranging from weight gain, insomnia, and even depression and mental decline. Chiropractors are well aware of the significance of this connection between posture and health, which makes them a reliable authority on this and how it relies on good spinal health.

There are many causes of poor posture. In some people, unfortunately postural issues are due to other conditions or diseases that involve bone deformity or bone loss, however, in the vast majority of cases, posture is directly related to a person’s habits and daily activities. Here are some of the most common causes of poor posture:

  • Looking down a lot during activities such as using a cellphone or playing video games
  • Working at a desk or computer for long periods of time (even at a desk with good ergonomics)
  • Poor ergonomics at work (chairs, desks, keyboards)
  • Improper sleep support (mattress, pillows)
  • Obesity
  • Muscles weakness
  • Poor self-esteem (people with low self-esteem tend to have a flexed/inward posture as a way to avoid being noticed)

As noted, there can be other health conditions and diseases that can contribute to poor posture, but as you can see, most contributors to poor posture are also things that are within your control.

Chiropractors and other health experts have found that people who have a tendency to slouch while standing, sitting, and even walking also tend to experience many kinds of health conditions, which can be mild or even severe. Many health problems such as headaches, muscle stiffness, shortness of breath, susceptibility to infectious illnesses, may actually be indirectly impacted by your posture and the positioning of your spinal column.

Your spine is important because it keeps your entire body in alignment and balance. It also houses and is meant to protect your central nervous system (spinal cord and brain). Your nervous system is responsible for the communication between your body and brain. The better your spinal alignment, the easier it is for your brain and body to share information and maintain good posture. Slouching, and being in poor posture makes it harder for this to happen – signals don’t transmit as well and muscles have to work harder to try to keep you upright. This extra, more difficult work can degrade the health of the spine and nervous system over time. When your brain and body need to work harder on your posture, they work less on keeping your other systems and functions working optimally. As this happens to the nervous system, other functions of the body may begin to have trouble working correctly, leading to inflammation, digestive issues, and more.

How To Keep Good Posture All Day Every Day

If you want to avoid these health problems, you’ll want to focus on maintaining proper posture as often as you can. It may be as simple as reminding yourself throughout the day to keep your shoulders pulled back, your head held high atop your neck and torso, and your spine in a neutral position as much it can.

If you find it difficult to maintain these positions of proper posture, it is a sign you need the professional help of a chiropractor. Your poor posture can be due to a combination of factors that include poor spinal alignment, poor nervous system signal flow, and muscle weakness. In most cases, these problems can all be corrected with a properly designed and executed plan that addresses all three of these issues as needed.

Do You Have Poor Posture?

Here is a simple test than can be an indicator of poor posture:

  1. Have someone take a picture of you standing without shoes on a flat surface, looking ahead of you. Think of a side profile of a police mug shot, for your whole body, top to bottom. The person will likely have to stand 10-15 feet away.
  2. Draw a straight vertical line from the inside of your ear down to the floor. If the line doesn’t pass through the middle of your shoulder, hip, knee and ankle, it’s likely you have poor posture.

If you’re unsure that you’re assessing your posture picture correctly, enlist a friend or family member to do this with you.


A Healthy Lifestyle Is Not a New Year Resolution, It’s a Discipline

A healthy lifestyle from the start will decide how you will be in your midlife and beyond. However it won’t happen unless you make the right choices. Work out, eat healthy, sleep well and you will set yourself on the path to success. After about 40, most people have achieved biological adulthood, which is a nicer way to saying you have boarded the slow train to your inevitable mortality. You will start to realize the slow and gradual decline in your response to bodily activities and the resulting resistance in your bodily functions.

Eating unhealthy processed food, irregular sleep pattern and inactivity create low level inflammatory response in your body. This inflammation gradually increases overtime, contributing directly to the germination of every major disease plaguing mankind – obesity, diabetes, heart disease, fatty liver disease, just to name a few.

The first and foremost thing to focus on is Nutrition – what you eat. Add lots of green leafy vegetables, whole grains, organic poultry, dairy and fruits in your daily diet. Keep your body hydrated. Drink plenty of water and raw fruit juice as fluids help keeping body temperature low and removes toxins through perspiration (sweat) and excretion (urine). Keep a balanced share of carbohydrate, protein, good fats and minerals. These small changes in your diet will contribute to your overall wellbeing. Cut back unhealthy fats from your diet slowly and target on stopping to consume them completely. Unhealthy fats include: dark chicken meat, poultry skin, fatty pork cuts, beef and lamb and high-fat dairies include whole milk, butter and cheese. Common ways to cut back on unhealthy fats are listed below:

  • Instead of frying meat, Bake / Grill / Broil it. Don’t forget to take the skin off before cooking chicken or turkey
  • Instead of butter and cheese on bread, use low fat spreads or slices of tomatoes on it to enhance the flavour
  • Instead of scrambled eggs, eat boiled / soft-boiled eggs. Garnish with a pinch of salt and black pepper to taste best
  • Instead of using sugar in patisseries and desserts, use organic honey to satisfy your sweet bud and stay healthy

When it comes to a healthy lifestyle, the importance of sleep is worth discussing. Get yourself adequate sleep, because internal healing and tissue repair happen only when you sleep. Sleep deficiency contributes to an increased risk of cardio-vascular disease, kidney disease, brain damage etc. Sleep deprivation lowers the metabolic rate of your body, which is linked to weight gain. Studies show that sleep deprived individuals have higher levels of Ghrelin, the hormone which stimulates appetite and lower levels of Leptin, the hormone which suppresses appetite. Hence, good sleepers tend to intake fewer calories.

The last, but definitely not the least is the importance of regular exercise when it comes to a healthy and active lifestyle. No matter which age group you belong to, it is advisable and wise to include a minimum 30 minutes of workout / physical activity of moderate intensity such as running, brisk walking on most, if not all days of the week. As humans, we spend far too much time in our synthetic environment, disconnected from the outside world. This disconnect poses a serious threat to our health and general wellness. Think of your body as a complex machine, which houses equally complex parts (bones) and sub systems (organs) inside. If you let it sit idle, the parts and the sub systems will lose movement capability and eventually get rusted. A few tips to incorporate exercise in your daily routine:

  • Prioritize physical activity
  • Make it fun
  • Get a partner
  • Keep a track of results
  • Set milestones

All these factors put together, will bring noticeable change in your lifestyle and wellbeing. Some changes will happen quickly, some will be gradual. But overall, you will feel the positive change in your health – mind, body and soul.


Fail-Safe Tips For Deep Sleep – One Is Bound To Work For You

When drifting off is a struggle, it may seem like one of life’s greatest frustrations. It needn’t. In most cases, choices made during the day can have a big impact on whether going to sleep is a pleasure or a nightmare.

At least one in five people have difficulty in getting to sleep at night. A small number of them visit their family doctors for help. Many thousands more suffer in silence.

Sleeplessness is not only one of the commonest – and most worrying – of all medical problems, it is also one of the problems about which there are the greatest number of myths.

For example, many people seem convinced that they must get at least eight hours sleep every night.

That’s simply not true. There is no firm rule about how much sleep we all need. Some people only feel comfortable when they have had 10 hours sleep. Others, like Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, manage perfectly well on four hours’ sleep a night.

It’s also important to remember that we all need less sleep as we get older.

A second myth is that if you have a sleepless night, then you’ll have to sleep twice as along the following night to make up for it – and avoid damaging your health.

The fact is that if you get just two hours sleep before going off to work then the worst that will happen is that you’ll feel tired! And you should be able to recover completely by having an extra couple of hours’ sleep the following night.

Many of the unfortunate millions who suffer from insomnia could solve their problem completely if only they knew a little more about the common causes of sleeplessness – so, here are some of the reasons why people can’t sleep, together with the solutions.

STRESS

If you go to bed thinking about the day’s problems and worrying about the things you have to sort out tomorrow then you’re bound to have difficulty in sleeping.

Writing down your problems will help take them off your mind. So, make a full list of your worries. Then put the list on one side and spend an hour relaxing in front of the TV before you go to bed.

MEDICINES

Prescribed pills often keep people awake. Drugs used for heart disease, high blood pressure and asthma commonly cause sleeplessness. Ask your doctor if he can change your prescription. Remember, too, that 50 per cent of people who can’t sleep are kept awake because they drink tea or coffee last thing at night. Caffeine is a powerful stimulant. Tobacco is another possible cause of sleeplessness and, although a single nightcap might help you sleep, too much alcohol will definitely cause insomnia.

PAIN

If you are kept awake by pain, then ask your doctor for help. If he can’t help you then ask for a second option.

CRAMP

Cramps keep many people awake. You can keep cramp at bay by using this simple exercise. Stand barefoot one yard away from a wall. Lean forward until your hands touch the wall, but keep your heels on the floor. Hold the position for 10 seconds and repeat it once. Do the exercise three times a day for a week and then every night before you go to bed.

DEPRESSION

When depression and sleeplessness go together, it is the depression that needs a doctor’s treatment.

HUNGER

If you are kept awake by hunger, then have a bite. Don’t have anything too hot, rich or spicy. A hot milk drink will probably be best. Remember, too, that if you are slimming you may have difficulty in sleeping. A low blood sugar will keep you awake. A very low-calorie late-night snack might help.

NOISE

If you are kept awake by noise, try soundproofing your bedroom with bookshelves and double glazing. Or try wearing ear plugs. They take a little getting used to, but work very well and are recommended for shift workers who have to try and sleep during the day.

Finally, it’s worth remembering that you won’t be able to get to sleep if you’re not tired.

If you’ve dealt with all these problems and you still have difficulty in getting to sleep at night, then follow this special bedtime regime:

  1. Relax your body thoroughly before getting into bed. Take a good brisk walk for 10 to 15 minutes. Think through your day’s problems and write down all your worries in a notebook. Keep it by your side and every time a new problem pops into your head, write it down.
  2. Have a soothing, warm bath for 15 minutes.
  3. Go to bed with a relaxing book or magazine. Try to keep something relaxing for bedtime reading. And have a spare book ready.
  4. When you turn off the light, close your eyes and try to transport yourself to somewhere beautiful, relaxing and warm. Imagine, for example, that you’re lying alone on a peaceful, sunny beach. Try to hear the waves on the shore and the sound of seagulls high overhead.
  5. This simple regime will probably send you to sleep within minutes. But if you can’t get to sleep, don’t lie there fretting. Get up, sit in a comfortable chair and read your book again. Make yourself a hot, milky drink. Then go back to bed when you start yawning.


How To Stop Worrying And Go To Sleep At Night

You need enough sleep. You need enough sleep in order to function and in order to restore and rejuvenate your mind and your body.

Tens of millions of people have insomnia and other sleep problems. Stress, worry and fear can be major contributors to sleep (and non-sleep) problems. It is very common for people to toss and turn all night or sleep too few hours or not sleep at all. This may often be due to one’s mind continuing to focus (at top speed) on problems instead of shutting down at night and resting.

When I was in my 20’s, and a money market trader on Wall Street, I had the very same problem. I had a job that required me to function at an extremely high level, continually, all day long. From 7AM to 7PM. I could not go to sleep at night because my mind was still racing, reviewing the day’s work (and problems) and planning the next day’s work (and problems). The lack of sleep began to interfere with my ability to function on the job at the required high level. If this continued, I would not be able to do my job effectively and I would soon be tired, and fired. I had to get more sleep.

When I realized that it was my mind that was keeping me awake until 1AM – 2AM, I decided I had to do something about it. What did I do? How did I solve the problem? What I did was make a deal with my brain. The deal was that when it was time to go to sleep I would take all my problems, worries and fears out of my brain and set them down on the nightstand next to my bed. I promised my brain that all my problems, worries and fears would still be there on the nightstand in the morning when I woke up and I would pick all my problems up off the nightstand, put them back in my brain, and my brain could start spinning and racing and worrying all over again. After a few nights of trying this it began to work. I fooled my brain. I trained my brain. Now, when it was time to go to sleep, I was able to lay down, put my problems and worries and fears aside, and go to sleep. And in the morning, I was refreshed and ready to face the day. That was decades ago and since then, when I get into bed, I lay down my troubles. And have no trouble going to sleep at night.

In addition, I learned something else; a lot of the things I worried about at night disappeared or lessened when I went to pick them up off the nightstand the next morning.

When it’s time to go to sleep, the day is finished. Put your worries down. When day is done and it’s time for sleep, there is nothing more you can actually do right now about your existing problems, worries and fears. Put them down on the nightstand, or, if you prefer, place an empty box next to your bed to put your problems in at night. Don’t worry, all your problems, worries and fears will still be there in the morning. Or not. Meanwhile, you can go to sleep.

And, if you wish, you can even write down your worries on a piece of paper and physically put them in the box. And, in the morning, you can once again pick them up. Or not.

As for the box, any empty box will do. Any color. It may help if the box has a lid and you can leave it open to easily put in your worries, problems and fears. No, it doesn’t have to be a large box. Unless you have a LOT of worries.


5 Tips That Can Help You Choose A Good Family Doctor

Choosing a good family doctor is not easy. You need to see a doctor who can perform the right diagnosis based on the symptoms of the patient. So, we suggest that you take your time while doing research before choosing a doctor. Given below are 5 tips that may help you make the best choice.

1) Consider an In-Network Specialist

If you have a health insurance policy, you may be able to avail the service of a doctor at discounted rates. Seeing these doctors won’t cost you an arm and a leg. These are in-network professionals. This type of pro can help you avoid any additional fees or surprise co-pays.

If you don’t know any of these doctors, your insurance provider can give you a list of a few good names. Alternatively, you can check online or ask the doctor that can accept your insurance.

2) Opt for Specialized Care

While choosing a doctor, make sure you take into account the needs of your family. In other words, if a family member is in need of special care, your chosen doctor should be able to offer it.

If your doctor can’t help you with this, your best bet is to look for a specialist. Typically, family care doctors can help you get in touch with a good specialist.

3) Consider the Commute

Often, distance is one of the most overlooked factors when opting for a doctor. Although 10 miles is not a long ride, you may not be able to spare that much time if you have a busy schedule. So, it may cause you a lot of inconveniences. Therefore, we suggest that you be practical as far as the distance is concerned.

4) Schedule an Initial Visit

You need to see the doctor in person before you choose them as the doctor may not have the bedside manners you want. Typically, most professionals offer a free of charge initial consultation. This discussion can help you find out if they have a good personality.

5) Read reviews and Ask for Referrals

Nowadays, you can read reviews on almost anything under the sun if you have access to the internet. The same goes for family medicine. It is not a factor that you have to consider, but it can help you get a deeper insight into the quality of service the doctor offers.

For instance, talking to the referrals will help you find out if the staff is friendly. By reading reviews and talking to a few referrals, you can make a better decision.

The Takeaway

Looking for a good family doctor is really important. So, it’s better that you do your homework and consider all the options that your insurance provider gives you. Actually, what you need to do is look for a doctor that you can work with for a long-term. After all, your health, as well as the health of your family members, depends largely on good health care. So, make sure you consider these tips before choosing a family doctor.


Three Questions To Answer If You Are Thinking About Varicose Vein Surgery

If you are one of the many who suffer from the varicose curse, you are not alone. Fortunately, there are now more ways to find treatment for your ailment. Technology and medical expertise has come a long way towards specializing in vascular treatment. However, as treatments become more common and more centers open up, you have to make decisions and choose from the best options. This is especially important if you are going to have surgery. Here are three questions to answer if you are thinking about varicose vein surgery.

  1. Is it necessary?

It is not uncommon for hospitals and specialized treatment centers to jump straight to the option of having surgery. Usually going with this option makes sure the problem gets taken care of while also providing the hospital or center a sizeable profit. However, just because surgery can take care of an issue, doesn’t mean it is the optimal solution. There are various other treatment options that exist for a range of subtle differences when dealing with veins.

  • Laser Light Therapy: Laser light therapy is an option for those suffering from spider veins of birthmarks. During this procedure a strong light is used to create energy that gets selectively absorbed into the vascular tissue. This destroys this type of tissue only and eventually your body absorbs it. Several treatments are necessary but it is overall painless and easy to recover.
  • Endovenous Ablation: For a non surgical and more minimally-invasive option, endovenous ablation may be a good solution. In this procedure a very tiny catheter is inserted into the knee and into a problem vein. A fiber that emits radiofrequencies is funneled inside the entire length of the vein. This causes it to seal which allows for the redirection of blood and nutrients to other healthy ones.
  1. Pick a quality doctor with experience.

If you have to have surgery and all other options have been exhausted, take your time finding the proper doctor to conduct the surgical procedure. A quality doctor will be well credentialed and have plenty of general medical experience but will have special training and specialization in the treatment of vascular diseases. Ideal doctors will have plenty of experience working under trained specialists and cardiothoracic and vascular surgeons as well as have numerous published articles and research in related fields. Overall, you want someone who has the experience to make sure your treatment starts and ends as easily as possible.

  1. Support staff.

Many people overlook the importance of a high quality and helpful staff. There is nothing worse than having a procedure and being left with questions and concerns and having no ability to contact or reach your doctor or nurse for help. High quality treatment centers make sure their staff are well-trained, knowledgeable, friendly, and able to assist you with your recover needs after your surgery. This makes all the difference in having a wonderful experience that you can easily recover from, or having a horrendous one filled with complications. Do not overlook the importance of a well-organized organization staffed with great people.


18 Ways To Win The Fight For Size

PUNCH UP YOUR MASS
When it comes to training, are your gains coming faster than an Ali one-two combo? Or are you getting worked over in the corner like some washed-up pug, folding up under a rain of body blows?

While you probably don’t want to admit it, chances are it’s the latter. You see, so many of us find ourselves making zero progress after months, even years of battling in the weight room. Unfortunately, and contrary to popular opinion, building your body is not an endeavour of brute force. When you aren’t making progress, simply dropping your head and powering through the same workout regime week after week won’t eventually wear down the forces that halt your growth. But that’s what many of us do.

Just like in boxing, the man usually left standing is the one who knew his opponent – he knew when to jab, when to duck and when to go in for the kill, not the one who tucked his chin and came out flailing. You need to take the same type of strategy to your training: fight smart.

To help you strategize, I present 18 tips on gaining and understand the “sweet science” of resistance training. I hope that as you incorporate this advice into your own regime, you realise that the bout for more muscle isn’t about one swift knockout punch; it’s about going the distance and slipping in some well-timed blows. Keep your gloves up!

  1. PUSH yourself. If you’re lifting about the same weights now as you were a year ago, don’t expect to be much bigger. While the biggest muscles aren’t the strongest muscles and the strongest muscles aren’t the biggest, a substantial link exists between strength and size, providing you avoid very low reps, the rest/pause technique, partial reps and long rest periods between sets. Those techniques generally yield lots of strength, but little or no size gains.
  2. MAKE “good form” your mantra. Don’t just give mere lip service to the cliché “use good form”. Permit absolutely no bouncing, heaving, exploding or excessive range of motion, and never get so greedy for poundage increases that you sacrifice good form. Good form is needed not only to avoid injury but also to stimulate optimal muscle growth. In addition to proper form, avoid high-risk exercises such as any squat with your heels raised on a board or plates, bench presses to your neck or upper chest, or behind-the-neck shoulder presses with very heavy weights. Also, use a controlled rep cadence: about 2 to 3 seconds for the positive phase of a rep and three seconds for the negative phase.
  3. INDIVIDUALISE your exercise selection. If an exercise hurts, and you’ve been performing it using good form with a controlled cadence and have tried sensible modifications, drop that exercise. The first rule of exercise selection is “do no harm”. Discard the reckless “no pain, no gain” maxim.
  4. SQUAT. Do your utmost to squat well and intensively. The benefits aren’t just limited to the thighs, glutes and lower back; the squat stimulates muscles throughout the body. While some people truly can’t squat intensively in a safe way, most can. Reverse the squat, improve your squatting form and pay your dues in the rack, and you’ll reap the rewards.
  5. DEADLIFT. The deadlift is one of the most productive exercises for bodybuilding mass. Master the technique – conventional style, sumo or stiff-legged – and slowly build up the weight to something very impressive. Impeccable flat-back form is imperative; avoid any exaggerated range of motion. Deadlift properly, or don’t do it at all.
  6. TRAIN hard, but smart. Do enough to stimulate growth, then get out of the gym and give your body the chance to recover and grow. The bottom line is progress, not training intensity. If, however, you always cut your sets short by a couple of reps, stopping even though you know you had more in you, get serious, pull out all the stops and put 100% effort into finishing what you start.
  7. LOG it. You’ve heard of the importance of keeping a training log, but how many people actually do it? Accurately record all your reps and poundages. As the weeks go by, you must be able to see small but gradual improvements in weight lifted and/or the number of reps performed. If not, you have clear proof that you need to alter some aspects of your training regime.
  8. HARNESS the power of one. Get a couple of half-pound discs, home-made weight increments, or some creative alternatives such as wrist weights or large washers so you can add just 1 pound to the bar at a time. Adding a minimum of 5 pounds to an exercise at a single shot when you’re at your current best weights, as many people try to do, often leads to a breakdown in form and injury. Instead, nudge up the weights. Strength is built slowly.
  9. PARTNER up. Find a training partner who has similar recovery abilities to yours, so you can use a similar training programme. Then push each other to deliver perfect workouts every time – intensive, progressive and always with good form. But, just as a good training partner will help, an inappropriate training partner can be your undoing. If he or she can recover more quickly than you, can tolerate more sets and exercises, and pushes you to abuse forced reps and other intensity enhancers, cut your ties pronto.
  10. BE consistent. Bodybuilding success is about getting each rep right, each set right, each workout right, each meal right and each night’s sleep right, week after week, month after month. Compromise a little on this and you’ll reduce your rate of progress; compromise a lot and you’ll kill your gains. Keep in mind, there are no “small” victories. Set no limits on yourself, but don’t expect the impossible. Just live for the next bit of progress, and then the next, and then the next. Bit by bit, you’ll build bigger muscles.
  11. MAKE your training time sacred. Protect your privacy while you train. You must be totally in charge and say no to intrusions, whether human or otherwise. Don’t do this to become a hermit or to alienate your family and friends; do it to honour your need for the focus required to do your very best at something you’ve committed to.
  12. FOCUS. Only highly gifted bodybuilders can build mass and refine it at the same time. The rest of us need to focus on building mass by concentrating primarily on the tried-and-tested compound exercises for a year or more. Only then does detail work such as cable crossovers, dumbbell laterals and triceps kickbacks have real practical value. If used earlier on, detail exercises stymie progress by putting a heavy drain on your recovery ability and reducing the level of effort you can dedicate toward compound moves.
  13. PERSONALISE your training programme to find what works best for you. No single programme works well for everyone; even good programmes have to be fine-tuned to fit the individual user. Personalise the factors of exercise volume, training frequency and exercise selection. Once you find a good programme, don’t chop and change it haphazardly. Stick with a given set of exercises long enough to make substantial progress in the weight you can lift.
  14. FOLLOW excellent nutritional habits every day. No matter how well you train, rest and sleep, if you cut corners with your nutrition, you’ll impair – if not stop altogether – your muscle growth. Take your nutrition very seriously. Divide your calorific and nutritional needs over five or preferably six meals per day. Eat more, and eat more often. If you weigh the same now as you did a year ago, you can’t expect to have bigger muscles unless you’ve substantially reduced your bodyfat.
  15. NOT progressing? Cut back. If your bodybuilding has stagnated, chances are you’re spending too much time in the gym. Cut back and give yourself a chance to grow. Try reducing your weight training to just three days per week, Monday, Wednesday and Friday, alternating two different routines – chest, shoulders, triceps and abs in one routine, and legs, back and biceps in the other. Perform no more than three works sets per exercise and a maximum of eight exercises per routine. If you can do more than three works sets per exercise, you’re loafing – train harder. Never battle through warning signs of overtraining. Symptoms include loss of training zeal, stagnant exercise poundages, reduced appetite, and nagging aches and pains. Whenever you feel any of these symptoms, take action by increasing recovery time and sleep, reducing training volume and improving on the nutrition front.
  16. STRETCH. Follow a programme of a dozen or so stretches three times a week. Stretching won’t make you bigger, but it will help keep you resistant to injury. Stretch only after warming up, hold stretches for 15-30 seconds, never do ballistic stretching, and don’t try to improve your abilities too quickly by forcing a stretch past your limits.
  17. REST generously between workouts. Despite adequate recovery time being so pivotal, many bodybuilders make the mistake of minimising recovery time and maximising workout frequency. If you still feel tired and are due to train today, rest another day. Then modify your training programme and lifestyle so that you recover adequately between workouts without having to take unscheduled rest days. Also, get at least eight hours of quality sleep each night. If you have sleeping problems, find solutions; consult a sleeping clinic if need be. Short-changing yourself in the sleep department can arrest bodybuilding gains even if your training and nutrition are in good order. If you rely on an alarm clock most mornings, you aren’t getting enough sleep. Give your bodybuilding recovery greater priority than late-night socialising.
  18. APPLY the central creed of bodybuilding: progress. Gear your training and entire package of recovery-related factors so that progress in muscular mass is a reality. If gains aren’t happening, make changes until they do happen. The buck stops with you. You select the exercises, volume and training frequency you use. You decide when to quit on a set. You must discipline yourself to use good form. You determine your sleeping hours. You are responsible for your nutrition. Take advantage of the tremendous power you have to change your physique!

There are millions hits on the internet search drive for Wellness – from mental to physical health, cardiac fitness, cancer, yoga, how to overcome certain ailments such as diabetes, hypertension, obesity, stoke, and tips on weight loss and how to grow taller, with many other ideas getting honorable mention. It takes quite a bit of research to find any one site that has so much to offer on all these fronts, let alone one that can combine all the needs for your innermost wellness – joy, bliss and beyond. For wellness’ sake you can stop looking out there, and take some time for yourself,


How To Hydrate and Replace Electrolytes When Working Out

Water is essential to life. A few days without it could result in death – it’s that important. So considering a hydration strategy, especially when working out in the heat is essential to overall health. We lose water through respiration, sweating as well as urinary and fecal output. Exercise speeds up the rate of water loss making intense exercise, especially in the heat, a possibility of leading to cramping, dizziness and heat exhaustion or heat stroke if adequate fluid intake isn’t met. Correct fluid intake is an important priority for exercisers and non-exercisers in the heat. Water makes up 60% of our bodies. So it’s incredibly important to for many different roles in the body.

The Role of Hydration In The Body:
Water has many important jobs. From a solvent to a mineral source, water plays a part in in many different functions. Here are some of water’s important jobs:

– Water acts as a solvent or a liquid that can dissolve other solids, liquids and gases. It can carry and transport these things in a number of ways. Two of water’s most important roles are the fact that water transports nutrients to cells and carries waste products away from cells.

– In the presence of water, chemical reactions can proceed when they might be impossible otherwise. Because of this, water acts as a catalyst to speed up enzymatic interactions with other chemicals.

– Drink up because water acts as a lubricant! That means that water helps lubricate joints and acts as a shock absorber for the eyes and spinal cord.

– Body hydration and fluid exchange help regulate body temperature. Don’t be afraid to sweat! It helps regulate your body temperature. When we begin to sweat, we know that body temperature has increased. As sweat stays on the skin, it begins to evaporate which lowers the body temperature.

– Did you know that water contains minerals? Drinking water is important as a source of calcium and magnesium. When drinking water is processed, pollutants are removed and lime or limestone is used to re-mineralize the water adding the calcium and magnesium into the water. Because re-mineralization varies depending on the location of the quarry, the mineral content can also vary.

Which Factors Determine How Much Water We Need:
What factors affect how much water we need? All of the following help determine how much water we need to take in.

Climate – Warmer climates may increase water needs by an additional 500 mL (2 cups) of water per day.

Physical activity demands – More or more intense exercise will require more water – depending on how much exercise is performed, water needs could double.

How much we’ve sweated – The amount of sweating may increase water needs.

Body size – Larger people will likely require more water and smaller people will require less.

Thirst – Also an indicator of when we need water. Contrary to popular believe that when we are thirsty we need water, thirst isn’t usually perceived until 1-2% of bodyweight is lost. At that point, exercise performance decreases and mental focus and clarity may drop off.
We know why water is important but how do we go about hydrating properly? Fluid balance or proper hydration is similar to energy balance (food intake vs output). It is important to avoid fluid imbalance for health.

We get water not only through the beverages we consume but also through some of the food we eat. Fruits and vegetables in their raw form have the highest percentage of water. Cooked or “wet” carbohydrates like rice, lentils and legumes have a fair amount of water where fats like nuts, seeds and oils are very low in water content.

Fluid Needs By Bodyweight:
One of the easiest way to determine how much water you need is by body weight. This would be the basic amount you need daily without exercise. *Yes, you’ll need to find a metric converter like this one to do the math.

Water Needs: 30 – 40 mL of water per 1 kg of bodyweight

Example: if you weigh 50 kg (110 lb), you would need 1.5 L – 2 L of water per day.

Hydration Indicators:
You should be drinking water consistently (not all at one time) throughout the day. The body can only absorb a certain amount of water at a time. Any overzealous drinking could lead to health issues.

Thirst – As stated above, if you’re thirsty, you’re already dehydrated.

Urine – The color of your urine is also an indicator of your hydration level.

colorless to slightly yellowish – hydrated
soft yellow – hydrated
pale gold – hydrated
gold, dark gold or light brown – possible light to moderate dehydration
brown – dehydrated

Hydration + Electrolyte Strategy:
These easy steps will help you to hydrate daily plus before and after workouts.

1. Determine how much water you need to drink on a daily basis using the body weight formula above.

2. Pre-hydration – Drinking about 2 cups of water BEFORE intense exercise ensures adequate hydration to start.

3. During Exercise – 1 cup (8 ounces) of water mixed with electrolytes (about 3/4 water to 1/4 electrolyte) every 15 minutes approximately.

4. After Exercise – Fluid intake is required to assist in recovery. Recovering with a mix of water, protein and carbs is a great idea in addition to electrolytes if needed. Formula: Approximately 15g of protein, 30g of carbs, electrolytes and water.


3 Tips To Reaching Your Health and Fitness Goals With A Busy Lifestyle

Life has this sneaky way of creeping in and throwing curve balls left and right. Life will always happen. There will always be a busy day at work or family problems or relationship highs and lows or sick children. Once conflict arises, it seems like health and fitness routines go haywire. We seek comfort food or we just don’t feel like moving. These are the things that help us stay clear and balanced in both body and mind though! So what do we do when conflict smacks us in the face (and it happens to everyone so if you’re reading this – you’re not alone)? Avoiding the conflict is not reasonable because we can’t always control what comes at us. Figurine out how to navigate through any issues is what needs to happen to stay on track.

I think so many times we approach health and fitness goals with an “all or nothing” mindset. For example, you might think your day is ruined because you veered off of your diet with an unhealthy meal or snack. Or, you decided not to workout today because you couldn’t do the allotted 60 minutes that you had planned for. Instead of doing something, you may have chosen nothing at all. You gave up on day two of 30 days of clean eating. Do any of those sound familiar? It doesn’t have to be all or nothing and something is better than nothing. My tips below might give you some perspective on how to reach your health and fitness goals even when life throws you a curve ball.

My philosophy is nourish, movement, mindset. If we can work on nourishing our bodies, moving them mindfully and maintaining a healthy attitude, we can function a little better day by day, week by week, month by month and eventually get into the healthy habits on a regular basis that we need to achieve total body balance.

1. Nourish.
Focus on one small thing at a time. Start simple and work from there. Don’t expect to change your eating habits overnight. Small changes executed day after day, week after week and so on can lead to really big change. So pick one small nutrition action and practice it for one to two weeks before adding in a new change.

Examples: Work on portion control (without regard to food quality), add one colorful food in at each meal, take 15 minutes to meal prep tomorrow’s healthy food or omit your sugary after dinner snack (swap it out with a healthy alternative). You could eat slowly and chew your food completely or focus on balancing your meals so that you have protein, carbohydrate and fat at each meal. Omitting processed foods at one to two meals per day is also another great option. These are just some examples but it’s up to you to figure out which little step you can take to improve your nutrition.

2. Movement.
Take advantage of the time that you DO have. Carve out space in the small pockets of your time. We get fixated on time so often that we don’t realize that a little is always better than nothing. For example, it’s so easy to think that you have to do a workout for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Wouldn’t 15 minutes of that workout be better than nothing though? The answer is yes! So squeeze in what you can, when you can.

Get unconventional. Maybe you don’t have time to get in a “workout”. Do what you can with what you’ve got. Maybe you take the stairs that day instead of the elevator. Park in the parking space furthest away from the building (gasp!) to get some extra steps in. Stand up from your desk and walk around for a minute every 15 or 20 minutes. Run around at the playground with your kids. Movement doesn’t always have to be in the form of a straight up 30 minute HIIT workout. It can be moving and active – outside or inside. What are the ways that you could get in some more movement?

Move mindfully. Pay close attention to your body and what it’s trying to tell you. Your body and energy levels will fluctuate day by day so take advantage of more vigorous workouts when you can and also add in active recovery, lighter workouts or even yoga or stretching when necessary.

3. Mindset.
Don’t give up. Don’t throw in the towel on eating right and moving your body. It’s seems easy to take the “all or nothing” approach but that’s not necessary. Something is always better than nothing.Don’t beat yourself up! Life ebbs and flows for everyone. Take a look at where you’re at right now and what you can make work right now.

The most important thing is to honor where you’re at. Only you know what you’re capable of at this point in your life. Make sure the small steps you take are 100% doable for you and your lifestyle. Small steps over time can add up to big change.


Top Gynecologists in India With Top Ratings and Patients’ Reviews

Get the list of best gynecologists in India as per their academic and professional background, ratings, patients’ reviews and treatments offered. Dr. Nandita P Palshetkar and Dr. Prathima Reddy top the list because of their experience, quality service and ratings.

Are you looking for the best gynecologist in India with top-notch treatment? Following is the list of some well-reputed gynecologists. Have a look:

Dr. Nandita P Palshetkar
With over 22 years of rich experience in her profession, Dr. Nandita is a director at the department of Infertility & IVF in Fortis hospital, Gurgaon. She has completed her MBBS from Grant Medical College and Sir JJ Hospital, Mumbai in 1985 and pursued MD in Obstetrics & Gynecology from Mumbai University in 1993. She is also a member of Indian Society of Assisted Reproduction.

Rating: 4.4 out of 5
Specialisation: Embryoscope, Intra Uterine Insemination (IUI), Egg and Embryo Donation, Embryo freezing, In Vitro Fertilisation (IVF)
Location: Palshetkar Patil Nursing Home in Gamdevi, Mumbai

2. Dr. Prathima Reddy
With over 30 years of experience in gynecology, Dr. Prathima is the director and senior consultant in the department of Obstetrics and Gynecology in Fortis La Femme, Richmond Town. She has completed her MBBS from Karnataka Univesity, Dharwad in 1998 and MRCOG from Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists from London. She is known for her excellent service and medical acumen.

Rating: 4.8 out of 5
Specialisation: Myomectomy, Ovarian Cyst Removal, High risk pregnancy, Hysterectomy, Oophorectomy.
Location: Fortis La Femme, Richmond town, Bengaluru

3. Dr. Witty Raina
With over 2 decades of rich experience in gynecology, Dr. Witty Raina is a director at Obstetrics & Gynecology and Minimal Access Surgery Department in Cloud Nine Hospital, Gurgaon. Earlier, she was associated with Fortis Memorial Hospital, Gurgaon. She has completed her MBBS from GSVM Medical College, Kanpur in 1994 and MD from Safdarjung Hospital, Delhi in 1998. She has also won best gynecologist award.

Rating: 4.8 out of 5
Specialisation: High Risk Pregnancy, Gynecological vaginal surgery and normal delivery.
Location: Cloudnine Hospital, Gurgaon, India

4. Dr. Sushila Shetty
With 33 years of experience, Dr. Sushila Shetty is a senior consultant in the department of Obstetrics and Gynecology in Fortis La Femme, Richmond Town, Bengaluru. She has done MBBS, DGO and MD from Grant Medical College and Sir JJ Hospital, Mumbai.

Rating: 4.3 out of 5
Specialisation: Gynecologist, Obstetrician, Laparoscopic surgeon.
Location: Fortis La Femme, Richmond Town, Bengaluru.

5. Dr. Bharti Minocha
With 43 years of best experience in her profession, Dr. Bharti Minocha is a senior consultant – Obstetrics & Gynecology and Laparoscopic Surgeon in Paras Hospital, Gurgaon. She is a member of FOGSI, Indian Menopausal Society, IMA and DMA and Gynecologic Oncology Society, India.