Have any of that Dark chocolate left from Valentine’s Day?

Did you know?

Dark chocolate is full of vitamins and nutrients that can positively improve your health. It is made from a seed of the cacao tree, it is one of the best antioxidants on the planet. A study in 2010, shows that a small amount of dark chocolate EVERY SINGLE DAY can decrease your risk of heart attack and stroke by nearly 40%.

Some of the brands you might recognize that are the best option are:

Ghirardelli Intense Dark (86% cacao)

Godiva Dark (72% cacao)

Lindt Excellence (70% and 80% cacao)

Dark chocolate is a little bit more bitter then you may be used to but that’s because they don’t have the added sugars and milk. While you may like to sit down in front of the t.v. and eat a whole tub of ice cream (which I would never like for you to do) I wouldn’t recommend you doing that with dark chocolate. It is good for you HOWEVER in moderation… if you eat too much you will experience immediate unpleasant symptoms such as indigestion, headache, and heartburn. Dark chocolate with at least 70% of cacao powder with sugar, and milk can also cause rapid weight gain.

But… with the right amount of dark chocolate it can help with weight loss in its pure form. As well as stabilize blood sugar, controlling appetite, and reduce cravings. If those aren’t enough positives it can also improve your moods and curb your desire for comfort greasy fatty foods.

Now if this isn’t enough to convince you to eat that chocolate bar I don’t know what will…

Blessings,

CoachABC

 

Do you know what this month is?

Other than it being Valentine’s Day this month it is also American Heart Month.

All of February is American Healthy Heart Month.

So what does that mean….?

It means that doctors all over the United States are asking you to pay attention to a silent killer that is killing more and more people every year. Heart disease is the cause of 1 in 4 deaths in the U.S.

Minor lifestyle changes can have a major impact on helping you prevent heart disease. Heart disease is devastating to you and your loved ones.

Below are a couple small changes that you can make to help immensely:

  1. LESS SALT- You have probably heard this many times. Too much sodium causes an increased blood pressure, which negatively affects your heart, brain, and kidneys.
  2. Physical Activity- Thirty minutes each day of elevating your heart rate is crucial to preventing heart disease or stroke. These are the number 1 and number 5 killers in the U.S. It may help to find something that you love to do so that it won’t seem like so much of a chore.

Recent studies show that the average age is decreasing of people affected by heart disease. The obesity rates in youth are increasing. This is partially because of fast food, junk food, and not enough physical activity. Heart disease is no longer something that affects you when you get older, it is affecting everyone. So make some healthy changes for your family and your family’s future.

 

Blessings,

CoachABC

COCKTAILS, WINE, AND SPIKED EGG NOG

With all of the holiday parties and family gatherings there is so much food and along with all of that food there are also alcoholic beverages. We all know that you need to limit your calorie intake with food and during this season, it’s very easy to get off track, but, very few people know that alcohol can be just as bad for the healthy lifestyle that you are choosing as well. Did you know that alcohol contains just as many calories, if not more than you can imagine? Let’s take a look….

20-ounce serving of beer can pack 250 calories

6-ounce glass of wine contains 120 calories + additional sugar

1.5-ounce shot of liquor contains about 100

And that’s not including the mixed sugary mixes.  In addition, drinking alcohol while on a weight loss journey or just trying to get healthy affects your body’s metabolism, and effects your body’s ability to burn fat. Your liver usually metabolizes your body’s ability to burn fat and when you drink, your fat metabolism takes a back seat to the alcohol. It then in turn takes longer for your body to burn the fat off even when you work out right after a night of drinking.

So if you can refrain from drinking while seeking your healthy living journey, you will also see many other changes other than weight loss. Cutting your alcohol intake can also help your skin clear up, and can also aid in more energy in combination with your workouts. Alcohol can have both long term and short term effects. You should detox your body from all toxins while working out to give your body a break and the changes will amaze you.

If you want to have that one drink or mixed cocktail, then consider mixing your margarita with diet drinks instead, as they have less sugar, or consider having a glass of red wine it is proven to be very good for your heart and has less calories than a mixed drink or glass of beer. In addition to alcohol and the affect that it has on your body, it also hinders your ability when driving. The holiday season is upon us and celebrating with alcohol beverages is always included, but should you decide to drink, then DO NOT DRIVE, appoint a designated driver, or choose other means of travel for safety; take a taxi, Uber, Lyft, or choose to stay where you are until the effects have worn off.

Happy Holidays to you all!!

What’s next?!!! Are you ready to keep going or get started?

Personal training sessions are coming soon!!!!

Let me help you set your fitness goals. Together we can make sure you get where you want to be.

I can offer you one on one time with me to set realistic goals (See testimonials below). If you are just starting out and need some guidance of what you can accomplish, if you need modified training due to injuries etc., or you would like help with meal plans, and the extra push that you don’t get working out alone.

Now that my second round of boot camp is coming to a close I want to make sure that I am as accessible as possible to my current clients, and can also help new clients.

Pricing, dates, locations, and available times will be posted here in my blog soon after the end of my boot camp. I will be available to answer any and all questions you may have via email.

I will post further information on how to book your exclusive training sessions with me VERY SOON so make sure you stay tuned to our weekly email and blog posts to make sure you don’t miss out on this awesome opportunity!

Next week I will be sharing actual results from clients who have worked with me, and how I have helped them reach their goals.

Happy reading,

CoachABC

What can you do…? How can you prevent it…? Live longer for your loved ones!!!!

Last week I touched on signs, symptoms, and a little insight into dementia. This week I will go into a little more detail including exercises you can do to help you physically and cognitively. I will also explain what you can add or remove from your diet to try and prevent this terrible illness.

Of course everyone wants to keep their amazing figure and stay healthy. But now with all of the pesticides being added to our food, and the unhealthy conditions our food (meats) are being raised in you really need to be mindful of what goes into your body. You always want to have a hefty amount of vegetables and proteins in your diet, but try your best to go organic. Some say it is a little more costly but if you shop at your local farmers markets and look around at you neighborhood grocery stores it really isn’t that much more. Some foods that you really want to incorporate EVERYDAY are not too different from what you might already eat.

There are 10 main (brain) foods:

  1. green leafy vegetables
  2. other vegetables
  3. nuts
  4. berries
  5. beans
  6. whole grains
  7. fish
  8. poultry
  9. olive oil
  10. wine

And…I know what you’re thinking, WINE… really? But yes a little wine is good for the brain. (Only one glass a day)

Now I will list 5 foods you want to avoid that are doing more harm than good to your brain:

  1. Red meat
  2. Butter and margarine
  3. Cheese
  4. Pastries and sweets
  5. Fried food and fast food

You also need to exercise your brain to keep your gears moving. Incorporating some cognitive exercises on top of your physical full body workout is a great way to stay in a routine. Like they always say “a moving body is a healthy body” and the same goes for your mind.

Here are some great cognitive exercises:

  1. Stay curious and involved — commit to lifelong learning
  2. Read, write, crossword or other puzzles
  3. Attend lectures and plays
  4. Enroll in courses at your local adult education center, community college or other community group
  5. Play games
  6. Garden
  7. Try memory exercises

 

Notice anything strange about these activities? They look like some things you may do on a daily basis. But try to make them more challenging, really make your brain work.

 

With anything in life you have to work for it, but in this case don’t you think it’s important to work a little harder at this. Keep your body and your mind strong, live your life to the fullest.

 

Protect yourself and your loved ones……

Dementia: The signs, symptoms, and what you can do to help prevent it….

So many people work out, and eat right so that they can make sure that their physical health is taken care of. But… do you know that also with physical good health as well as eating right is also helping aid in good mental health, and preventing diseases later on in life. Researchers are finding that if you take care of yourself NOW your life span can be lengthened.

A lot of people are now are finding their loved ones with many incurable diseases, whether they be genetic or not you have the ability to help your body be the best it can be to try to prevent these life altering situations with what you eat and the way you take care of your overall health. One big modern day disease that is ravaging families is dementia. It is said that 14% of people 71 and older have dementia in the United States. People who are 65 and older have some form or slight symptom of dementia.

Dementia is a debilitating disease that can be ultimately fatal. It starts with slight memory loss for example: (Names of relatives, kids, or your spouse. Not remembering where specific locations are like your favorite go to coffee shop.) Later dementia can cause your normal everyday activities into a struggle, you can’t remember how to dress yourself, brush your hair, or even tie your own shoes.
Once you are in the final and worst stages of dementia you can lose the ability to swallow food, walking, talking and have to be cared for around the clock as you will no longer have the cognitive means to support yourself in any way. Ultimately this is the stage that can be fatal. You are at this point in a vegetative state.

So…. What can you do to possibly help stop or even slow the risks of this type and many other diseases?

EAT RIGHT….

 

WORK OUT….

 

AND JUST PLAIN TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF….

Here is a list of foods that you can add into your diet on a daily basis to help your body fight off these diseases:
• Berries- Strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries they are called super foods for a reason.
• Sugar spice- Like nutmeg, and cinnamon are known to boost your central nervous system
• Omega-3’s- flaxseed and different types of fish are good for strong brain development.
• Coconut oil
• Leafy greens- Known to help support your cognitive health.

All of these foods are great to have in your diet every day, and here’s one more reason why you should make it your personal goal to stay in good health and not just temporarily diet because you want to fit into that cute outfit. Your physical and mental health count on you to take care of your later self.

Next week I will touch on further preventatives for dementia, the different types of dementia, as well as different cognitive and body exercises that will strengthen you if done on a continuous basis.

Wellness Wednesday Tip!!!! Fighting inflammation with food!

Are you one of those that deal with inflammation issues from time to time, well if so, here are a few foods that you should consider adding to your diet.

Healthy herbs and spices:
Herbs and spices like turmeric, garlic, ginger and cinnamon enhance flavor and are powerful, natural anti-inflammatory agents.

Lean Protein:
Fish and seafood (salmon, sea bass, steelhead, black cod) and other healthy proteins (eggs. grass-fed meats, skinless poultry) are rich in omega-3 fats that act to lower levels of cholesterol.

Whole Grains:
Grains like brown rice, basmati rice, buckwheat, and quinoa digest slowly, reducing frequency of spikes in blood sugar that promote inflammation.
Fruits & Vegetables:
Vegetables (spinach, kale, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, carrots, beets, peas, squash) and fruits (raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, peaches, pink grapefruit, pomegranates, and blackberries) are all rich in flavonoids and carotenoids with both antioxidant and anit-inflammatory activity.

Disclaimer:
If you are currently taking medication for any of the above noted issues, please consult your doctor before adding these items to your current regimen.

Wellness Wednesday Tip!!!! Protein bars…. Do you know what to look for?

Look at Carbs to Protein ratio

        OK, first thing’s first. If it’s a “protein” bar, it should have at least 15 grams of protein per bar. Less than that and you really aren’t getting much bang for your buck. Also, you want be sure the protein content is higher than carbs. Remember, the protein content is what makes a protein bar a “protein bar.” So if there are more grams of carbs than protein, or even worse, more grams of sugar than protein, you’ll definitely need to upgrade.

Look at the source of protein

            Choose bars that contain high-quality sources of protein, such as hydrolyzed whey, whey isolates and micellar casein. Whey or soy concentrates are fine but not the best. Also, gelatin (or collagen) is often added to protein bars to improve texture. You will find the protein type or types in the ingredients, from highest to lowest concentration. So check the ingredients and ensure that proteins such as hydrolyzed whey, whey isolates and micellar casein are high up on the ingredients list. Everything else is going to be suboptimal, and as a result, should not be listed high up on the ingredients.

Look at sugar

            Bottom line: Too much sugar in your diet will make you fat. And ironically enough, many protein bars are loaded with sugar. So avoid protein bars that contain refined sugars, such as sucrose, corn syrup, and high-fructose corn syrup in the ingredients. These types of ingredients will make your protein bar no better than a candy bar.

Next let’s talk a bit about artificial sweeteners and sugar alcohols. To make a protein taste good (because plain protein actually tastes pretty nasty), manufacturers often add things like artificial sweeteners (i.e. Sucralose) and sugar alcohols (i.e. xylitol, maltitol and sorbitol, also found in gum). Sugar alcohols will be listed along with sugars and dietary fiber under the Total Carbohydrate section on the nutrition label. Sugar alcohols have gained popularity as sweeteners because they have fewer calories, don’t affect blood sugar as much as sugar, and also don’t cause tooth decay. However sugar alcohols do have a downside because they may cause bloating and intestinal discomfort in some people. Also, because sugar alcohols do contribute calories and affect blood-sugar levels to variable degrees, they will need to be accounted for by the low-carb dieter.

Here’s my stance when it comes to sugar (artificial, alcohol or otherwise): If you have a lot of weight to lose, I’d stick to protein bars with no more than 6g net carbs per serving. Net carbs are your total carbs minus fiber. The only exception to this is if you’re using the bar immediately after a workout. In this case you can allow more carbs since your muscles will be more primed to absorb and burn those carbs quickly.

Look at fat

            It’s a good idea to find a bar that does contain some fat since this will slow digestion and the release of the carbs into the blood stream. However you want to avoid any bar that contains trans-fat, and watch out for bars with palm oil and palm kernel oil- which are types of saturated fats. Note: Not all saturated fats are associated with an increased risk of heart disease, but palm oil is.

Look at fiber

            Look for bars that contain at least 6 grams of fiber. Fiber will help promote regularity, control blood sugar spikes, and help you feel full longer.

Look at total calories relative to the size of the bar

            Last but not least, if you’re restricting daily calorie intake as a means to lose weight, downing a tiny sized, high calorie calorie protein bar isn’t exactly going to make fat loss easy. Think about it, you could be consuming a chunk of your total daily calories in just 1 protein bar that may not even fill you up for a few hours. So pay attention to the total calories of your bar, as well as the overall size of your protein bar.

The choices that coachabc uses are Kind Bars, and Power Crunch bars (chocolate mint is her favorite)

 

 

Wellness Wednesday Tip!!!! Labels are important… do you know how to read them?

When wanting to change your lifestyle and get healthy there are a few things you should consider including in your plan. Exercise OF COURSE, a lot of sleep, LOTS of water, and eating a healthier diet. While trying to eat healthier you should really be conscious of what you are putting into your body. Raw foods cooked from scratch are a great way to go but if you have to buy off the shelf make sure you can and know how to read your labels to make sure you are getting the best nutrition possible.

 

When reading a label what is the first thing you look at? The fancy font, the color of the bottle, or do you actually turn it over and attempt to read the ingredients and the amount of calories and fats that are include in the food you are eating? The calories are always a go to as well as how much fat and how much sugar. You want to make sure that when portioning you read the label correctly, make sure you are getting the appropriate serving size and calculating the amount of sugar and calories for each serving. You always want to make sure you’re not getting too much sugared sodium when trying to eat better. Make sure it is a healthy fat you’re consuming and not a greasy one.

In the chart above it gives you a guide to what you should look for as well as what to stay away from and what is important to include in your healthy living and eating journey. Another good tip when reading your labels is making sure the ingredients are good for you. The less processed the better. Do you know what to look for in ingredients do you know what is healthy? Some of those big fancy words could get a little confusing and make you think it is healthy when all it is is a bunch of chemicals. In the list below are a few examples of ingredients you should try to stay away from. It is a little difficult because they seem to be in everything nowadays. Always use your better judgement it is hard work to eat better but the results and the outcome will have you feeling and looking amazing!

 

The following things you want to try to stay away from on an ingredients list are:

  • Artificial Colors (any color with a number next to it is artificial)
  • Artificial Flavors and/or Natural Flavors (can be toxic to your brain and nervous system)
  • Artificial Sweeteners (Sucralose (Splenda), Aspartame (Nutrasweet and Equal), Saccharin (Sweet and low) )
  • Benzoate Preservatives
  • Brominated Vegetable Oil

 

 

 

Wellness Wednesday Tip!!!!! Is fat free REALLY fat free?

Have you ever wondered if the fat free version of your favorite salad dressing is really fat free???? What really is the difference? Well… this week we are going to look into if it really is a good idea to buy that fat free version for a few more cents, or does it make sense to just be more mindful of your portion sizes?

When the food and marketing companies look into their sales and what sells more they look at numbers not the health of the customer. They want to make money. Most low-fat or fat-free foods will have more sugar and chemicals in them then the original version to make up for the taste which causes them to be poor nutritional choices. The labels don’t always tell the truth make sure you take a little time to read the ingredients. People don’t realize that they gain more fat on low-fat diets.

You are better off buying foods that are labeled reduced fat, or lite, because they take out the unnecessary fats and sugars.

And while it may taste a little different than what you are used to, you aren’t getting all the added chemicals and sugars just for taste. Your body NEEDS healthy fats while you are working out and being active because it helps build more muscles and keeps your muscles strong.

When trying to live and eat healthier it is all about portions and everyone knows processed foods are not healthy for you to begin with.

So…

If you have the option, making your own salad dressings and preparing your own weekly meals is better than buying those 100 calorie items just because they are in the frozen healthy eating section. It’s all a ploy from the big box retailers they want your money and with a lot of us it works because we are so crunched for time. But if you want amazing results and to feel good about what you are putting into your body then make the time to know your ingredients. If you must pick up that bottle of salad dressing or that TV dinner just grab the regular one and portion yourself it will save you money and your body from unwanted and unnecessary chemicals.

 

See you next week!!!

Coach ABC