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Archive for August 2017

A Taste for Health

Talk about workouts! The human tongue stays busy with speaking, tasting and swallowing, not to mention any extra tongue tricks we make it do out of nervous habit (curling, thrusting, etc.). What do you know—or think you know—about this muscular organ?
Do you remember in biology class when your teacher told you the ability to curl your tongue was genetic?

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Exercise for Seniors

Man performing exercise for seniors

Certain types of exercise for seniors can lessen the chance that you develop more severe problems from the physical challenges of aging.

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Recovery Tech—An Array of New Products, Services and Centers

New technologies, products and services are boosting the exercise-recovery business. What’s going on here?
The rising popularity of wearable devices is making people much more aware of their performance.
High-intensity interval training remains one of the most popular kinds of exercise.
Everyday exercisers can now afford treatments that were formerly reserved for pro athletes.

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Creative Ideas That Inspire

Cardio Sweat Party, at Power Studios in New York City, was designed by Michele Gordon. It combines kickboxing with dance, athletic drills and upbeat music for a 55-minute, high-energy experience. Classes are open to all fitness levels, and each class begins with a dynamic, kickboxing- based warmup before moving into three to four segments of choreography. In between the choreographed moves, rounds of squats, lunges, jacks, burpees, mountain climbers and other athletic drills round out the experience.

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Sample Class: Rock and Ride!

Many indoor cycling instructors are not sure of the best way to combine strength and cycling without compromising either component. Rock and Ride provides the perfect mix of both while infusing a little fun with rock ’n’ roll music. This class is an ideal introduction for new riders because, instead of having to “suffer” through 60 minutes on an uncomfortable saddle, they get to hop off at the midpoint for strength work.

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Hit the Hips!

Eager class participants want to tap into their highest potential, and group fitness instructors have been acknowledging this by offering workouts that are more explosive, more powerful and fuller in range than ever before. However, intense, dynamic workouts demand a warmup that truly prepares the body. Specifically, you must target the hips—hip flexors, piriformis, glutes and hip rotators—to avoid possible tweaks from all those lunges, squats and burpees (not to mention repetitive stress from cycling and running).

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Life Hack for Tastier, Easier Meals: Sous Vide Cooking

Want to experience the tender deliciousness of a cut of meat or fish from a high-end restaurant without leaving your home or laboring in the kitchen for hours? If so, sous vide (pronounced sue-veed) cooking is right for you. For anywhere from under $100 to $300 for the sous vide precision cooker, plus a few dollars for plastic freezer bags and food cost, you can have a gourmet meal on the table in a couple of hours, with mere minutes spent in preparation.

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What Is a Lectin-Free Diet

As the gluten-free diet fad winds down, a “lectin-free” diet may become the next big trend. Fueling interest is a new book called The Plant Paradox by Steven R. Gundry (Harper Wave 2017), which claims that lectins in whole grains, legumes, nightshade vegetables (tomato, pepper, eggplant, potatoes), fruit, dairy and eggs are the enemy of anyone trying to lose weight and/or optimize health, according to a report on the Food Insight website.

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Kids Bombarded With Junk Food Ads

More than 75% of food-related television ads that kids see promote high-calorie, unhealthy foods and drinks, according to a UConn Rudd Center study published in June. While exposure to such ads has generally declined since a 2007 self-regulation initiative aimed at reducing advertising of unhealthy food targeting kids, children are still seeing many more ads for candy, sugary drinks and fast-food restaurants than they are for healthy foods. This study looked only at television advertising.

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Just to Be Clear, Saturated Fat Is Not Good for Heart Health

A presidential advisory from the American Heart Association released in June concluded strongly that lowering intake of saturated fat and replacing it with unsaturated fats—especially polyunsaturated ones—reduces cardiovascular disease rates. Studies indicate that this change would lower CVD rates by 30%, similar to the drop achieved by ubiquitous statin medications. Replacing saturated fats with polyunsaturated fats lowers levels of “bad” low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and triglycerides. Fat composition of commonly used oils is shown in the chart.

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From Drab to Fab: Giving Veggies Snazzy Names Increases Consumption in Adults

Vegetable consumption is notoriously low: Just 13% of adults and about 5% of children eat the recommended servings of vegetables per day. Studies have pointed to one way to get kids to eat more veggies: giving vegetables cool names like “x-ray vision carrots” and “power punch broccoli.” A study published by JAMA Internal Medicine in June found that the tactic was equally effective in adults when vegetables were given “indulgent” descriptions such as “dynamite chili and tangy lime-seasoned beets” or “sweet sizzlin’ green beans and crispy shallots.”

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Fruit and Vegetable Prescription Success

A small 10-week pilot study found that patients who received a fruit and vegetable “prescription” along with $30 tokens per week to spend on fruits and vegetables at a local farmer’s market reduced weight, waist circumference and cholesterol levels compared with a control group given a $30 gas card per week, reports the Cape Cod Times.

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Can Cinnamon Fight the Epidemic of Prediabetes?

With rates of prediabetes and diabetes climbing, there is great interest in inexpensive interventions that can help to control blood sugar levels. Studies suggest that people who consume 1 g of cinnamon (just under ½ teaspoon) per day have a blood sugar reduction in line with the decrease from prescription drugs, Time magazine reported in April. How
cinnamon exerts these effects is an area of active investigation. Add cinnamon to oatmeal, yogurt, tea and applesauce to boost intake.

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New Study Shows Alternate-Day Fast and Calorie Restriction Equally Effective at Weight Loss

People striving to lose weight have long been wooed by diet trends, hoping a new discovery or novel program will be their path to achieving a goal weight. Usually, research into the effectiveness of these diets lags behind media attention and public interest.
True to form, that has been the case with the alternate-day fast, a popular diet trend
that features a day of fasting for each day of eat-whatever-you-want “feasting.”

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