Exercise is a key contributor to living a healthy lifestyle. It improves your quality of life, health and puts you in a better mood. Most of us find it difficult to fit in a consistent exercise routine into our daily lives.
Sneaking cardio into daily life can save time and improve fitness. The more time getting moving in our daily lives means less time sitting, which can lower the risk for heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and early death. While intense exercise is good for us, it doesn’t completely erase the effects of a sedentary lifestyle, so making an effort to get moving throughout the day can have some serious long-term benefits.
So how much cardio is enough, and what are some ways to fit it in? The Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends 150 minutes per week of moderate aerobic exercise, plus two days per week strength training.
Whether it’s 30 continuous minutes of activity or three 10 minute sessions, here are 12 simple ways to get more active even for the busiest person.
1. Take The Stairs: But consider taking them one at a time, not two. Researchers found that while the rate of caloric expenditure is higher when taking two at a time, the burn over an entire flight is more when taking one at a time. In one study, participants climbed a 15-meter stairway five times a day with an average of 302 calories burned per week using one step and 266 calories per week using the double step..
2. Meetings On The Go: Hold walking meetings with co-workers. While moderate walking uses almost two-and-a-half times the energy of sitting in a meeting, mobile meetings can also strengthen work relationships, improve health, and boost creativity.
3. Hydrate frequently: Getting lots of water means more trips to the bathroom (drinking water might also help ramp up metabolism). Pick a bathroom on a different floor, and visit it often.
ON THE GO
4. No more lazy layovers: Stuck in the airport because of a delayed flight? Don’t just sit there. Do terminal laps, but skip the moving sidewalks!
5. Ditch the drive: Bike or walk to work instead. In addition to adding stress, commuting via public transportation or car can rack up sitting time and lead to weight gain.
6. Cleaning machine: Chores need to get done, so why not make them into a workout? Vacuuming can burn about 75 calories in half an hour, while washing the car uses more than double that.
7. Search for shade: While running errands, park in the shadiest spot, not the closest, to log more steps and keep the car cool.
8. Grocery Laps: Browsing the perimeter of a grocery store can do more than just promote healthy food choices. Take a couple of laps to compare prices and rack up some steps! Pushing a cart around the grocery store uses 105 to 155 calories in a half-hour. Bonus points for lugging home the groceries.
9. Shake it up: Dance to your favorite beat. Just 30 minutes, about seven or eight songs of fast dancing can use up 180 to 266 calories..
10. Sexercise ! 30 minutes of sex can burn 85 calories or more. “It may not sound like much, but it adds up: 42 half-hour sessions will burn 3,570 calories, more than enough to lose a pound.
11. “Shopping is my cardio”: Carrie Bradshaw's words of wisdom. A two-hour shopping expedition uses almost 300 calories, or 75 per half-hour. Shoppaholics hit the shops !
12. Game night: So-called “exergames” such as the Wii Fit Plus have been shown to use up to three times more energy than just sitting. But while these games are better than lazing on the couch, energy burn can vary quite a bit depending on the game.
As you can see, exercise doesn’t have to be done at the gym, on a track, or even in workout clothes. Little bits of exercise throughout the day can add up — just get creative! Pair some of these exercise tips with some strength training and you’ll be meeting the weekly recommendations for exercise.
Thirty per cent of infertility is due to two extremes, being overweight or underweight according to the National Infertility Association in the United States.
Experts say reducing extra weight by even 5% can enhance fertility.
Creating healthy eating habits and being your ideal weight is a good first step for women who are looking to conceive.
A healthy diet and lifestyle will potentially help with fertility but will also influence the baby’s health and well-being, intelligence and reduce the risk of complications during pregnancy.
A recent study has shown that following a Mediterranean diet boosts your odds of having a baby.
Let’s not leave men out of the baby making process. Male obesity may affect fertility by altering testosterone and other hormone levels. Men who would like to have a baby also have a responsibility to maintain a healthy body weight and consume a healthy, nutritious diet.
Approximately 40% of infertility issues are attributed to men, according to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. — AFP Relaxnews
Can eating specific foods fuel to spark your sexual appetite and increase
libido ? As Dr. Nalini Chilkov L.A. c., O.M.D., says “Love foods that stimulate desire are prized in cultures worldwide. These foods have circulatory, relaxant and muscle strengthening effects, or visual, tactile or sensory impact that stimulates the psyche. The brain, after all is the largest sexual organ in the body.”
All it takes is adding a few key foods into your diet to boost libido and get back in the mood. So dump the Viagra, here’s the list of the top sexy power foods that can boost your sex drive naturally.
Beetroot: Improves sexual health and stamina. Also known as ‘natural Viagra’, beetroot has been commonly used in a number of ancient customs to boost one’s sexual health. Since the vegetable is a rich source of nitrates it helps release nitric oxide into the body, widening the blood vessels, and increasing blood flow to the genitals – a mechanism that medicines like Viagra seek to replicate. Another factor is that beetroot contains a lot of boron, a chemical compound that is important for the production of the human sex hormone.
Watermelon: This juicy red fruit could be the new sexual star. While watermelon is 92 percent water, the remaining eight percent contains the phytonutrient citrulline, which converts to arginine, an amino acid that relaxes blood vessels, according to 2008 research from Texas A&M University’s department of horticultural sciences. Although not as organ-specific as drugs that treat men’s erectile dysfunction, watermelon may help improve blood flow to erectile tissue (present in the female clitoral area as well as the male penis), increasing arousal. Scientists at the university’s Fruit and Vegetable Improvement Center are now working on increasing the fruit’s citrulline content.
Oysters: have long been suspected as a love drug. Cleopatra and Casanova had one thing in common, they loved oysters. Legend has it that Casanova ate dozens of oysters per day. The Venetian romancer once seduced a vestal virgin by seductively sliding an oyster from his mouth to hers. If that doesn't get you in the mood, I don't know what will! In fact, current research proves our suspicion. Oysters improves dopamine levels which boosts libido in men and women. Oysters are also high in zinc which is vital for testosterone production and healthy sperm.
Chocolate: Dark unadulterated chocolate is a superfood. It has more antioxidants than green tea or red wine. It also contains a stimulating chemical known as phenylethlamine, that stimulates the sense of excitement and well being. The Journal of Sexual Medicine published a study that found, women who enjoyed a piece of chocolate every day had a more active sex life than those who didn't.
Asparagus: is high in a B vitamin known as folate that aids in increasing the production of histamine. Histamine is important for a healthy sex drive in men and women.
Maca: Is known by many as Peru's natural Viagra. Apparently this natural root has been known throughout Peru's history as a sex enhancing root passed down by the Inca. The maca plant is used by the Peruvian culture to increase strength, stamina, energy, fertility and libido.
Pumpkin Seeds: are high in zinc which is essential for healthy sperm production and preventing testosterone deficiency in men. They are also loaded with libido vitamins and minerals like vitamin B, E, C, D, K and minerals including calcium, potassium, niacin and phosphorous
Celery: You wouldn't normally think of celery as a libido inducing food, but eating celery actually increases the pheromone levels in a man's sweat, making them more attractive to women.
Hot Peppers: The stuff that makes chilies hot, capsaicin, can actually rev up your libido. Have you ever noticed a natural high when eating chilies? Capsaicin promotes the release of chemicals that can raise your heart rate and trigger the release of endorphins that give you a natural high, which pumps that libido!
Black Raspberries: Both the berries and the seeds will get you in the mood. “This phytochemical-rich food enhances both libido and sexual endurance," say Drs. Anna Maria and Brian Clement, authors of 7 Keys to Lifelong Sexual Vitality. Consume 10 black raspberries or a tablespoon of seeds a few hours before getting busy.
Figs: Figs will have you and your partner acting like teenagers again. "They're considered excellent stimulants of fertility and enhance the secretion of pheromones," say Drs. Clement. Feast on up to five figs before getting it on and find out for yourself.
Ginseng: Researchers at the University of Hawaii found that women who took a ginseng supplement significantly upped their libido in a month, and 68 percent also said their overall sex life improved dramatically. "
Saffron: Though on the pricey side, this spice is a treat for your stomach and sex life. Researchers at the University of Guelph have found that saffron can improve sexual performance. To use, Glassman suggests soaking the threads in hot liquid for 15 minutes then adding to any grain like rice, quinoa, or barley -- or use it in a soup or stew.
Processed Baked Goods: Libido Killer These processed foods will zap your sex drive, giving you a great reason to avoid them. "Baked goods contain saturated trans fats that wreak havoc on human cells, including the immune system," say Drs. Clement. "They surround the cells, coagulating them so that vital food glucose can't be absorbed and remains in the blood, raising blood sugar and lowering libido. The fats also clog ventricles, reducing oxygen to sexual organs, and prevent the spleen from producing enough white blood cells, so eggs and sperm have difficulty multiplying."
Dairy: Libido Killer Dairy addicts may want to switch to a lactose-free alternative. The Clements say that the lactic acid in dairy and oxygen-destroying elements can squash a libido at any level, so try to limit it to small portions three times per week. The calcium found in dairy is linked to cell and sexual health. When cells are healthy, they increase sensitivity for better circulation to genitalia, thus giving you more pleasure. Stock up on calcium-rich almond milk, leafy greens, cabbage, broccoli, and sardines.
Barbara is a qualified nutritionist offering Health, Nutrition & Lifestyle Counseling. She gives Healthy weight loss advice and promotes the Mediterranean diet. She is the author of the Med Life Diet - creating healthy lifestyle habits and attitudes for life !