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Chidren And Exercise
Wednesday, 31 March 2010

kids_strengthIf you have a child of 6 to 8 years old that wants to start exercising and lifting weights, you may find yourself wondering what you should do. While some think it is perfectly fine for children to exercise, there are others that think differently.

The long and short of it is that yes, it is beneficial for your child to partake in exercise or a weight training regimen although there are a few things that you should keep in mind once this starts to happen.

No matter how you look at it, children aren't minature adults and therefore you can't use the same methods with growing children that you can use with adults, as children are different from adults
emotionally, anatomically, and physiologically.

All children have immature skeletons, as their bones don't mature until they get 14 - 22 years of age. With girls, exercise during childhood can have very critical effects on bone health that can last for their entire lives.

Children are often times vulnerable to growth related overuse injuries such as Osgood schlatter disease. Children have immature temperature regulation systems due to their having a large surface area compared to their muscle mass which will cause them to be more susceptible to injury when they aren't properly warmed up.

Children don't sweat as much as adults do, so they will be more susceptible to heat exhaustion as well as a heat stroke. Due to their low muscle mass and immature hormone system, it makes it harder for them to develop strength and speed. Their breathing and heart response during exercise are also different from an adults, which will affect their capacity for exercise.

On the other hand, young boys and girls can drastically improve their strength with weight training although opposed to adults, neurological factors instead of muscle growth factors are mostly responsible.

When you consider programs for children, first and foremost you should obtain a medical clearance. The first approach to designing a program is to establish a repetition range of 8 - 12 and keep the work load appropriate for the range.

You should ensure that workouts are spread out enough to have at least 1 - 2 full days of rest between workouts. The main focus when working out should be on the form of every exercise performed, and not on the amount of weight being lifted.

Before weight training, warm up and stretching should be done. Start your children off with light loads and then make adjustments accordingly. No more than 3 non consecutive exercise sessions should be done in a week. You should also see to it that they drink plenty of water before, during, and after exercise. Getting enough water is very important with exercise, as it is often times very easy to get dehydrated - especially with children.

 
Top 5 Healthiest Dark Green Vegetables
Monday, 15 March 2010

N_vegetables_broccoli_300x216Remember when your parents used to load your plate up with veggies and not let you have any dessert until you finished every last bit? They just might have been onto something with all those dark green vegetables.

Take a look at Popeye and his spinach. He would down a can and practically lift a car. Impressive wasn't it? Maybe the general idea isn't so far fetched.

Five of the healthiest dark green vegetables include broccoli, kale, spinach, romaine lettuce and Swiss chard. These vegetables, identified by their dark green color, are rich in antioxidants and usually have large amounts of phytochemicals like Vitamin C.

If you've turned on the television in the past three years, antioxidants have been all over the news. They've been proven to help reduce the risk of cancer and strengthen the immune system.

Many foods tend to lose nutrients when cooked. The great thing about these dark green vegetables is that you can find them easily in your grocery store and they taste great with little or no cooking, leaving much of their nutrients intact.

Here is some important information about these healthy veggies:

Broccoli is a fun vegetable for kids because it feels like you're eating a small tree. In fact, the little buds are actually tiny flourettes that contain more than twice the amount of Vitamin C of an orange.

Some facts about broccoli you may not already know include:

  • Broccoli is a great source of fiber, both soluble and insoluble. It not only meets both types of fiber needs, but it's also a rich source to add to your diet.
  • Research has shown indole-3-carbinol - found in the phytonutrients of broccoli - actually deactivates a metabolite which can become cancerous.
  • Broccoli also helps restore sun-damaged skin, reduces the risk of heart disease, and boosts the immune system. At the same time, it also promotes healthy bone growth due to its massive amounts of calcium.
Kale is a slightly bitter, leafy green with a huge amount of folic acid and potassium. Try some kale in your stir-fry. You may just find yourself thoroughly impressed.

  • The folic acid found in kale is a great addition to your diet if you suffer from poor hair, skin and nails.
  • In addition, the potassium helps to promote the breakdown of lactic acid in muscles after a workout, and is a great food to help prevent muscle soreness in the recovery process.
Swiss chard is similar to spinach, with a little more of an earthy undertone. Rich in Vitamins C and K, as well as calcium, Swiss chard is a great addition to salads.

  • Vitamin K helps promote healthy eye and brain function. The next time you have to spend hours staring at a computer screen or studying for that big exam, try some Swiss chard and let your mind be at ease knowing your brain is getting the nutrients it needs.

Spinach is a lean mean green antioxidant-packing machine, rich in flavor and in Vitamins A and C, and iron.

  • Spinach is loaded with important vitamins and minerals to promote healthy brain function as well as strong bones and muscles.
  • Next time you have a salad, try it with spinach instead of lettuce for a little variety and a big explosion of taste.
Lettuce may be the last thing that comes to mind when you picture dark green vegetables. While many of the lighter shades of lettuce, such as iceberg, have very little nutritional value, the darker the color, the more they have to hide.

Romaine lettuce, while still made up mostly of water, is packed with antioxidants and fiber.

The darker green the leaf, the more folic acid is present, which prevents heart disease.

Even though lettuce seems so simple, look at some of its complex attributes:

  • Lettuce is great for diets since it's very low in calories.
  • Magnesium, found in romaine lettuce, does wonders in revitalizing muscular tissues, the brain and the nerves.
  • The chlorophyll-packed juice in lettuce is very helpful in maintaining normal hair color.
  • Lettuce is high in iron, which helps the formation of red blood cells.
  • Lettuce may help in treating insomnia, acid indigestion, colitis, constipation, gout, stress and many other diseases as well.

While you might have been forced to eat your dark green veggies as a kid, now you know why it was so important. Even today, your dark greens are vital to your health and well-being. Try these dark greens in some new recipes; you just might surprise yourself and actually enjoy it!
 
The Benefits of Warm Ups
Sunday, 28 February 2010

warmupsIf exercise is good for the body, why do so many people get injured? That's a good question. Like anything else, you have to ease into exercise and there is a basic method everyone can follow for better results. Don't forget your warm-up.

Before sprinting off into the distance, it is important to warm up first. Like the name implies, warming up gets the body prepared for a more vigorous workout. It's like your car. In the morning, especially winter mornings, the car may not turn over the first time you try to start it. Gas can settle in the bottom of the tank overnight as the temperature drops. It takes a few minutes after you get it started for the inner workings to get going.

The same goes for your engine. After a night of sleep or a day of regular activity, your muscles are tight. They need to limber up a little before you go full tilt into your workout. Otherwise, you risk serious injury and a blow to your motivation.

If you are thinking that you can get away without warming up, just read the benefits of warm-ups that you may not have been enjoying up until now:

1. Your heart rate rises slowly. The body gets prepared to exercise. You won't feel like your heart is beating out of your chest within five minutes. Your blood gets time to circulate properly and send rich oxygen to feed those muscles and slow the build-up of lactic acid (what causes those muscle cramps).

2. You can avoid injury. Most injuries come from lack of proper warm-up routines. When the muscles are more pliable, they move easier and resist injuries. Quick twists and turns are tolerated well by the body when all muscles are ready to go.

3. Endurance is increased. When the body is warm and the blood is circulating, you can work out longer. It does take time to build up endurance but you will see potentially greater results with warm-ups than without.

4. It promotes a proper breathing technique. When you go running or play that sport right away, you are less likely to be breathing efficiently. Throughout the warm-up, you are setting your breathing patterns for the entire workout. Breathing in through the nose and out through the mouth can prevent dry mouth and also gasping for air.

5. You sweat sooner. Sweating is usually a sign that your body is warm and reaching its peak of efficiency. Warming up for five or ten minutes at a slower pace will get the sweat rolling. Besides warming up the muscles it is also cooling at the same time.

If you haven't had these kinds of experiences, then try warming up first. Besides the benefits, it also helps prevent serious injuries that can stop you from exercising for weeks or even months.

 
Weight Loss - How to Manage Cravings When Trying To Eat Healthy?
Sunday, 14 February 2010

diet_250Even a healthy diet doesn't eliminate all cravings. The desire for a chocolate bar, a high-calorie cappuccino and other high-sugar, high-fat items doesn't disappear overnight. But cravings can be managed, and with more than just 'sheer willpower', important as that is.

Some people diet by simply foregoing meals, such as breakfast or lunch. But that 'all or nothing' approach guarantees cravings. The overall calorie intake needs to be lowered for a successful diet. But achieving it by skipping meals also leads to several other potential problems, including wild blood sugar swings and nutritional deficits. Those signal the body to crave what it lacks, which makes dieting that much harder.

Help yourself resist those cravings that do occur by keeping only healthy diet items around. A chocolate bar that is at the store a few miles away is a lot easier to resist than the one in the pantry. A jar of peanut butter kept in the cupboard is not the ideal way to test your willpower. Instead, keep a supply of fruits, carrots and other items on hand at all times. Trail bars and other snack-style foods are fine, provided they don't have high quantities of sugar or saturated fat. Some are designed with just that for hikers who need a quick energy burst on the mountain. Make sure they're low calorie, low sugar and low fat.

Don't skip on water. Take care not to over-hydrate, since that can be injurious to health, especially on very hot days. But dehydration produces signals that are similar to hunger. Keeping your body well watered leads to minimal cravings for food, especially sweets. Beware bloating, but a slightly full feeling from water reduces food cravings.

Be sure to eat a balanced meal before you shop for groceries. It will be difficult enough to resist that attractive package of goodies as you pass by it walking down the aisle. Give yourself every assistance by not being hungry when you see it. If necessary, take along an apple or some dried fruit to help you resist temptation. Sometimes 'cold turkey' on all 'goodies' is the best way to go. But, for many, total forbearance leads to hugely increased cravings. You're almost daring yourself to give in. Keep those cravings under control by indulging yourself with small portions of those things you love. An ounce of dark chocolate isn't going to ruin your diet. In fact, it can be a part of a healthy one, since it contains antioxidants that are actually beneficial. But do whatever is necessary to keep the quantity under control. Moderation does no harm and often produces the best result. Telling yourself 'just one more' over and over again undermines your efforts toward your goal.

Last, but far from least, keep your eyes on the prize. Remind yourself daily why you are making the effort to diet. You may want to lose weight, achieve fitness, create a better image, feel better about yourself, gain overall good health or all of the above. Imagine yourself achieving them. Realize that giving in puts you farther away from your goal and your cravings will tend to decrease.

 
In a Hurry to Look Great This Holiday Season?
Sunday, 06 December 2009

botoxWell it's that time of year again...another holiday season! With the many office parties, family gatherings and New Year's Eve parties just around the corner, everyone wants to look and feel their best in time for the holidays. Fortunately, thanks to a simple, in-office, quick-fix treatment called Botox®, it is possible to smooth out deep facial lines and look younger before you welcome in the new year!

What is Botox?

Botox® is a purified protein derived from clostridium botulinum bacteria. When injected into a muscle, it acts as a nerve impulse blocker; in other words, it keeps muscles from contracting thus working wonders on forehead creases, frown lines between the eyes, and crow's-feet.

Who can benefit most from these injections?

Botox® works best for what are known as dynamic wrinkles. Dynamic facial wrinkles are wrinkles that occur over time due to muscle contractions resulting from facial expressions such frowning, smiling or laughing.

Are the results permanent?

The effects of Botox® injects are not permanent lasting approximately 3 to 6 months. Therefore, to maintain results, the procedure must be repeated at that time.

How Long Does The Procedure Take?

Once the area to be treated is mapped out, the actual injections themselves take only a few minutes to administer. Usually, a topical anesthetic cream is applied to the area prior to the procedure, the area becomes numb and there is no pain. Otherwise, patients just feel a needle prick.

How soon will I see results?

Botox® typically produces noticeable wrinkle reduction in 5-7 days. As mentioned earlier, the results achieved last anywhere from 3 to 6 months.

So, if you have just a few weeks to get ready for the upcoming seasonal parties and holiday celebrations don't waist another minute call our office today for a FREE consultation and put your best looking face forward with one of the most effective ways to reduce the appearance of wrinkles...Botox®

 
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