jillian michaels before and after pics

Most of us know did not know Jillian Michaels before she was the hard-nosed, physically fit, trainer from the Biggest Loser but that has obviously changed.

Jillian is a great example that anyone can make a drastic change in their life and personal appearance once they are dedicated to do so. It’s not always easy but she is proof that it can be done. Continue reading

The New Year is fast approaching and this is the time when millions of us get stressed out worrying about how we are going to lose those unwanted pounds.

working outYou have been procrastinating for months and the excitement of the New Year brings forth many new resolutions and commitments to finally lose weight.  But, this time of the year also brings confusion as we are bombarded with all kinds of new diets and making a decision on which one to use is not always easy.

However, before you get all wrapped up in the next big diet craze for 2013 or the fast selling book with all the latest tips, step back and do some of the things that you probably already know you should be doing.

Let’s just use a common sense diet that has worked for people that want to lose a few pounds to those that desire to lose several hundred.  Here are a few simple tips that you can use to help you drop pounds and inches in 2013.

1. Drink More Water

Yes, you’ve heard it before but it is very important. Without boring you with a bunch of stats, we gain a tremendous amount of unwanted weight just from drinking sugary products. Sodas, fruit juices, Starbucks coffees, and a host of other drinks outside of good old water quickly contribute to extra pounds and inches.  It takes a while to train your body to want water but it is one of the best things you can do if you want to lose weight.

2. Eat Less

That may sound silly to some readers but it won’t if you consider a few things. First of all, we are often conditioned to eat what we see in front of us. This is especially true for many Americans who were told as kids to finish the food that was put on their plates. That kind of conditioning carries over into adulthood and can easily cause you to overeat.  Needless to say, that is only one aspect of overeating but something that you should take note of on a daily basis.

Reduce your food portions starting now. If you are still hungry later, eat something else. However, don’t force feed your body more food than it really needs. Once your hunger is satisfied, stop eating and put the leftovers into the fridge. Over time, you may find that you go back to finish them less and less.

3. Eat Better

This is a biggie and super hard to do for many people. There are all kinds of reasons why we stop at a place like McDonald’s three or four times a week but there are no good excuses when it comes to your health.  Unfortunately, some of us wait until it’s too late to make the needed changes.  The bottom line is that fast food restaurants can ultimately destroy your quality of life.

The fact that you don’t have a lot of money and think it’s cheaper to eat there or that you don’t have to cook and it’s much faster are probably not good enough reasons when it comes to living longer.  Even if you do go to such places, they have other menu items that can be better for you than a triple cheeseburger.

It’s not easy to make these decisions but the main goal of this article is awareness and to get you thinking about the steps you need to take to lose weight in the coming year. It is virtually impossible to solve a problem without acknowledging it so just admitting that fast food is not always the best choice is the first step in making the right decisions later.

4. Get Moving

The dreaded exercise word is something that a large majority of us don’t want to hear. However, it is not always that bad.  If you have visions of doing 90 minute workouts while dripping with sweat like you see on the late night infomercials, that can discourage you super fast.

But, exercise can truly be fun and effective if you take the time to find something that you enjoy doing. Maybe it’s a sport or something that you can do a couple of times per week like dancing. The secret is to find something that your brain doesn’t immediately associate with hard labor and then make a firm decision to do it regularly for at least 90 days.

After that 90 days, evaluate where you are and continue the activity or find a new one that you can enjoy. There are hundreds of activities that burn substantial calories so you just need to be creative and come up with something that fits into your lifestyle.

5. Get Help

It is almost always harder when you attempt to lose weight on your own. There is a reason why you often see people working out in tandem.  A little bit of buddy support and go a long way in helping you to meet your weight loss goals.

It could be a spouse, friend, coworker, or paid professional. Either way, seek the advice and support of a second party and it will be easier to lose weight.

So, before you start chasing after all the new diets for 2013, think about the simple things that you can start doing and make them happen.  Losing weight starts with baby steps so the key is to get moving in the right direction. More importantly, never give up. Success is always possible if you just believe in yourself.

Dependence on food is a serious disease that many do not recognize. Eating in secrecy and guilt after eating meals are a few of the first symptoms of food addiction. It is usually caused by carbohydrates because they release serotonin, the hormone of happiness.

The need for food even though you’re not hungry or eating because of emotions are signs of  food addiction, according to a survey of American Dietetic Association. Continue reading

Make your own delicious and healthy shakes for weight loss. If you think that shakes for weight loss are expensive and you aren’t confident in their ingredients, try to make them yourself. Homemade shakes for weight loss are some of the most popular supplements for weight loss, because everyone can do it with the right ingredients, a little ice and a blender. In fact, they can help you even more than other weight loss products that you can find in the stores. Continue reading

The glycemic index diet or GI diet is gaining a reputation as a healthy way to lose weight. While this is a way of eating rather than a diet, more people are following the GI diet in order to lose weight.

Many doctors agree that the GI diet, if followed correctly, can be a great way to lose weight, especially for those who struggle with conventional low calorie diets or who have trouble controlling their appetite.

The GI diet is similar to the low carbohydrates diet, but not so strict and is focused on specific carbohydrates. It is focused on the proper timing of the two basic types of meals – a carb and protein meal.

Scientific facts behind the timing and types of meal makes the GI diet a potential way to lose fat, in safely and relatively quick way.

GI diet is based on the control of blood sugar levels and insulin

Insulin is a hormone that helps regulate blood sugar levels; in fact it lowers blood sugar levels by stimulating cells to absorb the excess sugar from the blood. The problem is that insulin causes fat cells to take up excess fatty acids from the blood. You often eat meals that consist of sugar and fat, so if the meal consists of foods with a high glycemic index then the fat from the meal can be easily stored on your hips.

There is an established theory, if one can control insulin levels – they can control how much fat the body will store from each meal. The fat can be stored only when insulin is present, and the insulin is released only when the blood sugar levels rise. Carbohydrates in food raise blood sugar if absorbed too rapidly. The types of food that cause rapid absorption of sugar are those with a high GI index.

Glycemic index

The glycemic index ranks foods by assigning them a number from 0 to 100. The number indicates the speed at which food raises blood glucose levels during its absorption. The higher the value, the quicker the sugar is absorbed. High GI foods has a value of 70 or more. GI value between 56 and 69 is considered moderate, and foods with a GI of less than 55 are considered a food with a low GI index.

Foods with a low glycemic index are the best because they are more easily digested and help provide a steady supply of energy over a period of several hours. They also make you feel fuller longer. One good example of a low glycemic index product is the WonderSlim Aspartame Free Pudding-Shakes. The best flavor is chocolate and they really do help to keep you feeling satisfied throughout the day.

Is the GI diet complicated?

The GI Diet sounds simple, because the food is generally chosen from a list of low GI, but it gets complicated when you are preparing a meal of several different ingredients. The idea is that most of the items which make up a meal have a low GI, so that the overall GI of the meal falls within the low to medium range.

Foods in the GI diet are divided into: red (which you must avoid, such as white bread, sausage or full-fat dairy products), yellow (which you can eat in the maintenance phase of weight, such as non-fat cheese, bananas, corn or beans from a can) and green (which are recommended, such as eggs, fish, chicken, low-fat milk and yogurt, apples, oranges, most vegetables or brown rice).

Benefits of GI diet:

  • You can enjoy the delicious food, and limit the storage of fat.
  • You can enjoy your favorite foods and lose weight with it.
  • Increased energy and feeling good.
  • Control of blood sugar levels.
  • Fewer feelings of hunger.
  • Fewer need for sweets.
  • Less feeling bloated after meals.
  • The ability to eat more if you want.
  • Reduced risk of diabetes and other diseases.
  • There are no strict caloric restrictions.

Maybe this is one you haven’t tried yet? Have you heard of the Sex Diet? Regular sexual activity contributes to weight loss. On average, a half-hour of sex burns 150-350 calories, and for weight loss is recommended to practice it from three to five times a week.

This activity can be compared with a half-hour walking, running or lifting weights. Orgasm, which is a good cardio workout, burns 60-100 calories, and half an hour of kissing and cuddling up to 90 calories.

Going to the gym or exercising at home is often seen as a tedious obligation. Many don’t know that sexual activity brings the same benefits as any other physical activity. Besides it giving pleasure, sex improves mood, sleep and overall quality of life, reduces stress, relieves pain, gives you energy, helps in weight loss, and it is far from a boring and difficult activity.

During sex, all the muscles are in motion, including the legs, thighs, arms, shoulders and lower abdomen, and if sex is longer you’ll burn more calories. Changing the position requires more power and delivers twice as many benefits from simple exercise and having a partner who is more active in sex, burns more calories. Continue reading

Have you tried the Yogurt Diet yet? Numerous studies have proven that diets with reduced calcium lead to faster weight gain because fat cells become larger. With the addition of low-fat yogurt to your daily diet, you accelerate weight loss and decrease the size of your stomach.

Scientists have proven if obese adults consume three meals with fat-free yogurt, they lose 22% more weight and 61% more body fat than people who not get enough calcium through nutrition. People who drink yogurt lose 81% more fat from their belly than people who don’t drink yogurt. Professor Michael Zemel, a nutritionist from the University of the State of Tennessee, says that this yogurt-diet is two times more efficient to maintain muscle mass, because when people follow a diet to lose weight they want to lose fat, not muscle tissue.

What Vitamins are in Yogurt?

Yogurt gives you plenty of protein and lots of vitamins B2, B12, calcium, zinc and other nutrients that are very hard to find in other types of food, especially all in one place. Vitamin B2 is necessary for proper cellular respiration and getting energy from carbohydrates, fats and some amino acids. Vitamin B12 is essential for the growth and development of cells. Yogurt is also very important in maintaining normal intestinal flora. (See our recent article on the Microbiome and your weight).

The caloric value of yogurt depends on the type of milk from which it was prepared. For example, 100 grams of whole milk yogurt has about 150 kcal (627kJ), while one produced by fermenting nonfat milk provides only 45 kcal (190 kJ). The addition of fruit and sugar increases the caloric value.

Light or full-fat yogurt?

10 mg of full-fat yogurt without any additives contains about 150 cal. Nutritionists unanimously confirm its nutritional value which has been known since antiquity. The difference between full-fat whole yogurt and light yogurt is in amount of fat and caloric value. Light yogurt is only recommended if you’re concerned about excessive fat in the blood or excessive thickness. Full-fat yogurt contains many vitamins, including vitamin D which plays important role in the binding of calcium in the body and its maintaining bone structure. Therefore, it is better for children, pregnant women, nursing mothers and the elderly to give priority to full-fat yogurt. Light yogurt has about 45 cal. If you add fruit or sugar to light yogurt, caloric value rises to 80 cal.

A yogurt-diet needs at least 15-30 days to speed up weight loss. You will improve your digestion, immunity, protect yourself from candida, improve skin appearance and provide nutrients. You should daily eat about 500 grams of yogurt, 300 grams of fruit (citrus, apples, bananas, pomegranates…), 100 grams of meat (non-fat turkey or chicken) and 300 grams of vegetables (cabbage, tomatoes, cucumbers, radishes, carrots, beans…).

The Yogurt-diet is simple, practical and applicable in daily life, especially for busy people who don’t have time to prepare a complex menu that requires most diet regime. The Yogurt-diet point is that the central daily meal (lunch) contains one non-fat yogurt combined with fruit, it may be a seasonal fruit or any other fruit of your choice, but definitely bananas which would saturate your body. The Yogurt-diet lasts for a month, but it can be used as a way to keep the weight off.


Older women with low levels of vitamin D in the blood, compared with women with adequate levels of this vitamin, might be more prone to weight gain, show results of research published in the Journal of Women’s Health.

The five-year study conducted with 4600 women older than 65 years showed that women with insufficient levels of vitamin D in the blood weighed about two kilograms more than those who have a satisfactory level.

In addition, women with vitamin D deficiency before the research had higher body weight than women with normal levels.

Women with vitamin D deficiency are more likely to become overweight

So your body can produce vitamin D, your skin should be exposed to sunlight. Specifically, a normal balanced diet contains very little vitamin D. That’s why deficiency of vitamin D is a growing problem among certain groups of people: the elderly people or people who are placed in institutions, people with darker skin color, and those who are covered by clothing for cultural or religious reasons.

How much of this vitamin you need depends on the color of your skin, sun exposure, age and diet. If you have a lighter skin, it may be sufficient for you to be exposed to the summer sun for about 5 minutes per day, and if you have darker skin, you may need up to 20 minutes each day.

This study couldn’t confirm if low vitamin D causes weight gain or is just its reflection, but there are theories that deficit could be a cause of obesity because fat cells have receptors for the vitamin D. Also, if your little one doesn’t get enough sunlight vitamin, there is a chance they will fight with extra pounds and even with obesity.

Experts at the University of Michigan have found that children with vitamin D deficiency had the most fat in the abdominal region, and also gain weight faster than with children who have more vitamin D.

What to Eat for More Vitamin D

There are very few foods that contain vitamin D: fatty fish (tuna, salmon, sardines and mackerel), beef liver, cheese, eggs (egg yolks), certain types of enriched milk and margarine. These healthy foods are good to include in your diet even if you think you don’t need to worry about a lack of vitamin D. Vitamin D works best when is taken with vitamin A and fish-liver oil is the best natural source of vitamin A and D.

Except gaining weight, vitamin D deficiency is linked to many diseases such as osteoporosis, heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, schizophrenia, and some autoimmune disorders. Expert advice, talk to your primary care doctors about the need to consume dietary supplements (additional vitamins).

The Institute of Medicine has recently increased the recommended daily intake of vitamin D to 600 IU (international units) for people from 1-70 years, and 800 IU for people older than 70 years. Today, the phenomenon of the lack of vitamin D you can see everywhere in the world, especially in developing countries further north, but even areas with large amounts of sun are no exception.


Several studies are now pointing to the possibility that your microbiome, or all of the bacteria that live on and in your body, may hold key positions in determining your weight. Microbes outnumber your human cells by ten-fold. That means there is more of them than you. Our microbiome is established our first year of life through the birth canal, diet, and antibiotic use.

Microbiome and Antibiotics

One study explored children who took a lot of antibiotics as babies and found that they were more likely to be overweight. This would seem to make sense if the antibiotics “took out” all of the gut flora, both good and bad, then there is a possibility that losing some of those good bacteria has an adverse effect.

After all, bacteria help us to digest food, provide vitamins, and protect us from other pathogens. If these bacteria get destroyed, you could have problems such as Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and now perhaps, obesity. (How to cleanse your digestive tract safely)

While the studies into this interesting field continue, you may want to repopulate your intestinal flora. There are some very simple things you can do such as eating more fermented foods like sauerkraut or kimchi.

There are also pro biotic pills and yogurt you can have daily to help regulate your gut. Other things that influence the human microbiome are pesticides, pollutants, and chemicals so eating clean and organic might be an option to improve your flora.

Green Coffee extract has gained quite a bit of attention recently especially after it was featured on an episode of the Dr. Oz show. If you have watched the show in the past, you know that Dr. Oz is a certified and well respected heart surgeon who often highlights various weight loss and other products on his show.

pic of green coffee beansThe great thing about Dr. Oz is that he doesn’t just hype things like some people tend to do. He likes to challenge claims and will often do his own research before recommending an item.

Click here to learn more about Green Coffee Extract for Fat Burning…

As with many things he mentions, this was a big surge of searches for green coffee beans and weight loss after he discussed its possible benefits.

In addition to Dr. Oz discussing the benefits of green coffee beans, Dr. Joe Vinson performed a double blind study to further examine the possible effects of the green coffee bean on weight loss.

Dr. Joe Vinson of the University of Scranton presented results of research in March 2012 whereby he performed a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled crossover study which found a significant correlation between consumption of green coffee and weight loss.[1] Vinson thinks that the weight loss may be due to chlorogenic acid… (Wikipedia.org)

What Is Green Coffee

Basically green coffee is  what you have prior to coffee beans being dried, roasted and turned into coffee that you see at the average supermarket. They are unprocessed and contain many different components that can impact both health and weight.

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