Nutrition in Support of a Healthy Life

It is no secret that the food you eat plays a big role in how you feel. It is important that what you eat is going to provide you what your body needs. This is a complicated subject, and something that many hours of study have gone into. Due to its complexity, nutrition is something you may shy away from. However, with just a little bit of knowledge, you can be sure that you are not doing your body a disservice. Here you can find a quick overview of some considerations you can quickly and easily add to your meals.

Energy

As the population of the US continues to deal with the obesity crisis, the amount of energy in the food you eat is coming under scrutiny. The mood in many consumers is that more calories means more fat on their bums. While this is true, it is a great simplification, and should be taken with some common sense.

Your body needs energy to live. In fact, most of the energy you burn is just from existing. Your heart rate, breathing, and other systems all need a certain amount of energy to work. If you are too restrictive in the number of calories you are getting from food, these systems can stop functioning correctly. A healthy lifestyle balances out your body’s energy needs with the amount that you consume and swinging to either end of that spectrum is going to be harmful to your body.

Macro Nutrients

Macro nutrients are the main components of food. They are fat, carbohydrates, and protein. Each of these serve a purpose in your body. Throughout recent history, most of these have had misconceptions placed upon them by media and the general public. It is hard to dispel some of the myths surrounding them because a lot of the studies are inconclusive. The general consensuses currently are that all of the macro nutrients are important, but too much of anything can be bad.

Micro Nutrients

These are the tinier parts of the food you eat. Vitamins and minerals fall under this umbrella. You know that these are important but trying to break down each one can be very difficult. Like their macro nutrient counterparts, the studies that are done can be difficult to reproduce. This leaves a lot of misinformation around, and makes it difficult to give exact recommendations. Generally, eating a wide variety of foods lets you increase your chances of getting everything you need. Fresh fruits and vegetables are going to be good sources of several required vitamins and minerals and eating plenty of them is recommended.

In short, a lot of the knowledge around proper nutrition is quite vague. This can be very frustrating if you are looking to find a prescribed method to stay healthy. The good news is that this leaves a lot of room for personal preference, dietary restrictions, and lifestyle in your choices. As the sciences of food increases, the perfect diet may appear, but until then you will just have to rest assured that humans have been surviving on numerous different food sources for a long time. Therefore, there must be a lot of ways to successfully eat, while meeting your body’s needs.

Creative Ways to Repurpose Your Yoga Clothes

Let go. It’s a mantra that we are constantly grappling with as yogis. This phrase becomes significant in many areas of life, and sometimes it becomes a point of tension with our physical belongings. It seems there is an endless flow of new yoga clothing designs, and it is natural to want to practice in clothes that make us feel strong and beautiful. As your wardrobe grows, however, it can be very healthy, spiritually, mentally and physically, to let go of clothes that you no longer need or wear frequently. Here are a few fun ways you can give new purpose to old yoga clothes.

1. First, decide which clothes are getting the boot.

With heavy practice, it is common for the elasticity of yoga clothes to eventually break down. If you are pausing often during your practice to readjust the area around your calves or to pull up your waistband, it might be a sign that your clothes are not cutting it. Warrior 2 is generally a good gauge for this!

Decide whether these items would be acceptably wearable to someone else or if they are ready to be repurposed. If there are any holes or frayed edges, the clothing may be better off repurposed. If not, think about who may benefit from these clothes. Remember that yoga clothes are generally acceptable workout clothes for most sporting activities.

2. New headband!

If you have decided that your clothes are past the point of no return, then repurpose them. Because of the elasticity that is common in yoga pants, a great beginner project is to convert old pants into new headbands and hairbands. Depending on the width of your pants, you may be able to find a segment of one pant leg that is the same width as your ideal headband.

Cut a 2 to 4-inches tall segment of a pant leg and try it on. It may be a portion right above the knee or higher up. This also works with some cotton t-shirts. Try cutting the sleeve off of an old t-shirt and see if it fits as a headband. Trial and error is the best way to approach this project until you find what works best for you.

3. New hairband!

Similar to the method above, cut a small segment of yoga leggings just around the ankle. It might just fit as the perfect accompaniment to your hairdo.

4. Yoga mat bag!

If you are up for a craftier challenge, try cutting your old yoga clothes into small 4-inch by 4-inch squares. Use a sewing machine to quilt the squares into a rectangular patchwork. Roll the patchwork around your mat and continue adding rows of squares until the patchwork can surround your rolled-up mat. Sew the length of the patchwork together to form a noodle-shaped bag that your mat can slip into. If you have extra material, add straps.

Be creative, and enjoy repurposing your old yoga clothes!

Thinking of Skipping Breakfast? Science Says You Might Want to Reconsider

It’s 7:00 AM, you are one foot out the door holding 5 bags, your thermos full of caffeine and trying to remember where on earth you put your car keys. Breakfast is the last thing on your mind and you plan on noshing on whatever is available during your morning meeting. Sound familiar? If it does, you might want to rethink this habit in the name of health. A new study was recently published that found that people who eat breakfast regularly are less likely to suffer from a stroke or heart attack than people who skip it.

Researchers looked at data from a span of 40 years related to meal timing and diet and found that breakfast fans tend to be healthier in general, have lower cholesterol, blood pressure and risk of developing diabetes over their lifetime.

So why is the most important meal of the day so magical? Researchers believe that it helps keep your biological clock in good standing and has benefits to your metabolism. It’s thought that meal timing specifically affects overall health because of its impact on the body’s internal clock. By resetting your internal clock, nutrient metabolism can be changed resulting in insulin resistance, inflammation, and inevitable weight gain. This includes intermittent fasting as well! While intermittent fasting has been linked to a myriad of health benefits including weight loss, decreased blood pressure and improved blood sugar it might not be doing more harm than good in the long run.

Although this is an interesting finding, more human studies need to be done to prove this further. For now, even eating a small breakfast will suffice. Try a hard boiled egg and oatmeal, a slice of toast with avocado or if you can’t even fathom eating any solid food whatsoever, opt for a fruit and vegetable smoothie. Think about it- when you sleep your body is fasting for a 7-8 hour period. Eating within an hour of waking up will give you the energy your body is craving and will kick your metabolism into gear. Being part of the breakfast club has never been cooler.