Posts Tagged 'heart'

Get that Heart Pumping!

Cartoon heart character running on treadmill

In honor of American Heart Month, it is time for you to get your heart pumping! Any form of exercise is beneficial to your health, but for this month in specific, why not take the time to focus on your heart. People tend to focus externally on their bodies and get caught up on the physical appearance, that too often people forgot that it all starts from within. Staying active to benefit your health internally is the foundation you need to get a better workout overall. Here are some exercises that will really target your heart and give it the extra attention it deserves!

Just keep swimming, just keep swimming…

Swimming is known to be one of the best aerobic exercises you can partake in. You need as little as two and half hours of swimming a week to start seeing instant results. The exercise itself puts less stress on your joints and bones, that it could pose as beneficial for those who are overweight or suffering from joint conditions. The exercise really has no limitations and is perfect for just about anyone!

Stair Stamina

Whether you use a stair machine or actual stairs that can be found almost in every household or apartment, it is no doubt that it will give you a good workout. The incline embedded into every step helps you reach maximum heart rate in not time. It’s convenient, yet challenging!

Dance to Your Heart’s Desires

Who wouldn’t want to get up and bust a move when you hear a contagious beat? Dancing is by one of the most enjoyable ways to get in that cardio – simply because you don’t even realize that you are giving your heart a little workout in the process. Dance can range from so many styles – zumba, salsa, hip hop, etc. – that you can really cater it to how you are feeling and what music is inspiring you at the moment. The best part – you don’t need a fancy studio, you can do it at the comfort of your own home!

Tai Chi Chill Zone

Since we are focusing on ways to ensure that we are exercising ourselves from within, Tai Chi is a great option! It is a low impact exercise that uses slow body movements combined with deep breathing and concentration which benefits the mind, the body, and contributes to overall heart health. It is a win-win for your body internally, that you will start to notice a difference in how you tackle other exercises that target different parts!

Give your heart some love this February season!

 

Love,

Diana Banzon

 

Apple Cider Vinegar: Fad or Fail?

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My mom has always sworn by apple cider vinegar, but is this just a trend or does the benefits really amount to all the hype it has received? Let’s investigate as to why this magic elixir has gotten so much buzz in the health industry and come to a conclusion whether it is something you should consider implementing into your daily routine!

What is apple cider vinegar?

It i made out of crushed apples or apple cider that is then exposed to yeast. The sugars eventually ferment into alcohol. Bacteria is then added to the alcohol solution, which further ferments it to acetic acid – an active ingredient in vinegar.

1. Regulates blood sugar levels

Consuming apple cider vinegar was found to decrease blood sugar levels by an average of 31% percent. Further studies proved that giving diabetic rats apple cider vinegar managed to reduce blood sugar levels over a span of as little as four weeks. In relation to blood sugar levels, vinegar ingestion improves insulin sensitivity to those facing diabetes.

2. Helps promote weight loss

Studies show that vinegar can increase satiety, causing you to eat 200-275 fewer calories than usual.

A study in 175 people with obesity showed that daily apple cider vinegar consumption led to reduced belly fat and weight loss (13):

  • 15 mL (1 tablespoon): Lost 2.6 pounds, or 1.2 kilograms.
  • 30 mL (2 tablespoons): Lost 3.7 pounds, or 1.7 kilograms.

Despite the results not being too significant during a three month span, this has the potential to make a difference and add up over a matter of time if done consistently.

3. Improves heart health

With vinegar having the ability to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels, it eventually translates to reducing heart disease risk factors in the long run. Improvement seen within blood sugar levels, insulin sensitivity, and diabetes all contribute to reducing the risk of developing heart complications. 

4. Harnesses properties that could fight against cancer

Apple cider vinegar contains properties that have the capability to kill cancer cells and reduce the size of tumors according to some studies that have been tested on rats. However, studies that have been tested on humans that show that vinegar consumption is in fact linked to a decrease in esophageal cancer in China.

5. Improves skin health

Vinegar has antibacterial and healing properties, which treats both active acne and the scarring that is left behind. The lactic acid in the vinegar is responsible for lightening pigmentation caused from acne and is proven to show the results in as little as three months under consistent use.

 

Watermelon is the Way to GO!

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What fruit is prominent within this scorching summer season, that just so happens to be the best way to cool yourself off and satisfy your hunger? Watermelon of course! As I am here at my job munching on some for breakfast, I wanted to thoroughly investigate in what exactly I am putting into my body, since I know I will be eating it a lot this summer. With all the water and sweetness that comes with every bite of the fruit, I can’t help but think that I am only indulging and not providing any benefits for my body. Fortunately, I was proved very wrong in my assumption!

With the summer heat getting the best of us, our chances of dehydration are more likely. Luckily, watermelon is known to release hydrating properties to the body. I mean are you surprised? It directly states it in the name! In fact, the fruit is made out of 92% water. With having this much water in combination to fiber, it essentially tricks our bodies into thinking we are full, without obtaining a significant amount of calories.

Heart disease is ranked as the number one cause of death worldwide. Anything to reduce the chances of falling under this demographic should be taken into serious consideration. The lycopene found in watermelon can help lower cholesterol and prevent additional damage to it. In regard to blood pressure, the lycopene helps lower it and the citrulline increases the levels of  nitric oxide, which helps your blood vessels expand that results in lower blood pressure.

Aside from solely benefiting internal health, the vitamins watermelon provides benefits hair and skin! Vitamin C found in the fruit make collagen, which contributes to strong hair and supple skin. As for Vitamin A, it assists in the creation and restoration of skin cells that prevent it from looking dry and flaky. Lycopene and beta-carotene helps prevent your skin from sunburn, which is convenient during this sunny summer season when all we want to do is be outside and show off some skin. When people said that beauty started from within, they weren’t lying!

These are only a few reasons as to why you shouldn’t feel guilty in indulging watermelon this summer. Take advantage of it being in season and enjoy it while it is at its most ripe and abundant. Click here for recipes to change up the way you eat watermelon throughout this sunny season.

Happy eating!

Diana Banzon

 

Get Your Heart Pumping

Kettle Bell Beside Adidas Pair of Shoes

I hope you have all started moving for the Go Move challenge. If not, there is still time, the challenge is taking place throughout the month of February. Get started today, and recruit your friends and colleagues to move with you! Moving is so important to our overall health, and especially necessary to keep our hearts in good shape.

And when it comes to your heart rate, just like exercising, eating right, or anything else, you need to find your sweet spot. One of those cliche sayings that actually holds so much merit is, “everything in moderation.” There is a point where we can exercise too much, there is a point where we could be exercising too little (or not at all). There is a point where we can eat too much of one thing, even if it is healthy. When it comes to all of these things, there is a target we should all be aiming for. And just like these other parallels, there is a target spot for where our heart rates should be at when resting, and when exercising. The key to all of these “sweet spots”, is that they are different for everybody. It all depends on your age, gender, and of course any health conditions. The neat part is that you can find out where your heart rate should be while resting, and exercising, and then monitor it to ensure you are reaching your targets. And with modern day gadgets, you can use a smart watch or a Fitbit, or similar tool to monitor it for you, and of course you still have the option to accomplish this the old-fashioned way as well.

So, it’s great to know what your target heart rate should be, and that you can reach it with exercise. But maybe you cannot bring yourself to exercise, or you dread every single one of your workouts, or you make excuses. Hey, if this sounds like you, I promise you are not alone. It is great to be able to say that we understand we need to get moving and get our heart rate up, but it’s a whole different story to actually want to do these things. I would like to offer some advice: find something you love to do. There are so many options to getting in some physical activity, so there is bound to be at least one workout out there for everybody. Do some experimenting to find what works for you. There are fitness studios and clubs popping up everywhere, go to a class! Register for Try It Night, February 13th from 4 pm to 6 pm, to test out 3 different classes in one night. And don’t be afraid to experiment, love your body so that your body will love you back.

And trust me when I say grab a buddy! A lot of times it is easier to stick to something new when you have someone else there to encourage you, after all, we are all in this together. Let’s all set out on a mission to get moving, find what we love, and get our heart pumping! Have a wonderful, productive, and active week, Marquette. Go move!

Alicia Diedrich

Being your own Valentine

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Photo via botcommunications.com

Valentine’s Day is around the corner and we’re all scrambling to get our loved ones mementos to show them our love. One thing that we should not forget this season of love, though, is to show some love to the most important person in our lives – ourselves!

Self-love is one of the most challenging goals to reach but with small steps, its totally achievable. And what better time to take care of yourself than Valentine’s Day, the day of love? Here’s some quick ways to reinforce the self-love this week.

Accept your flaws. – Everyday each of us messes up. That’s alright, we are only human. Go ahead and give yourself some love by being forgiving of yourself when you mess up. Instead of taking a negative position on the matter, encourage yourself to do better next time.

Take a bath. – Or an extra long shower or just sit in the sauna at the gym. You deserve to relax, especially after all the hard work you put in at work and at home every day. Taking the time to pamper yourself can really improve your mood and view of yourself.

Chocolate (in moderation). – Not just chocolate, but any kind of small savory treat is alright every once in a while. As long as it is in moderation, treating yourself is always a great way to reward yourself for being exactly the way you are.

Spend quality time with your loved ones. – Surrounding yourself with positive people and people you care about a lot is a great way to build up your own self-respect and self-worth. Hanging out with your family or other loved ones not only allows you to positively influence their lives, but they can positively influence yours too.

Dress up. – Dressing for success is a real thing. When you take the time to wear your favorite shirt with a pair of shoes you like or do your hair the way you think is best, it helps build your self-confidence. Feeling like you look good on a daily basis can help you keep you chin up and ultimately boost your self-esteem.


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