Important reasons to exercise

1. Studies have found that exercising on a regular basis will reduce your risk of dying early. Those over 50 years who jog for 20 minutes a day are known to live longer than those who don’t.

2. Your quality of life will be better as you’ll be fitter and more athletic, reduce shortness of breath and be able to get about when you’re much older. Being actively fit is all part of a healthy and happy life.

3. You strengthen your heart when you exercise and therefore reduce the risk of heart attack, stroke and heart disease. You will also be reducing the levels of bad cholesterol which is damaging to your heart.

4. Exercise will also help to keep the lungs healthy and improve your efficiency in breathing. Most people use a fraction of their lung capacity when they breath in.

5. Most women are at risk of osteoporosis as they get older. Exercise helps to increase the density of the bones and therefore reduce the risk of the disease and fractures.

6. Exercise helps individuals to maintain a desired weight or lose weight. With increasing numbers of obesity around the world, a healthy diet coupled with exercising on a regular basis can help those that are overweight.

7. Exercise can help a person to sleep better at night which helps to increase a person’s productivity and reduce fatigue. Not getting enough sleep on a daily basis is extremely damaging to a person’s health.

8. Regular exercise is known to reduce anxiety, depression and stress. Long periods of either of these three cause damage to the body, brain and cells.

9. The main reason people exercise is to tone their body, manage their weight and to look good. This helps to boost confidence and self-esteem in people as their appearance improves.

10. Regular exercise is not only good for your health, but it also helps to improve your sex life and sexual functioning. It can help reduce the incidence of sexual dysfunction and improves circulation which is beneficial for sex. Endurance, flexibility and strength, which are also linked to a healthy sex life, are also improved.

11. Exercise helps to keep the immune system strong which means the body is better at fighting colds, viruses, and at preventing diseases.

12. Exercise will help to keep a person’s skin clear, too. As circulation is improved, the distribution of oxygen, vitamins and nutrients are also improved, reducing the chances of pimples, blemishes and bad skin.

13. Exercise ensures that plenty of oxygen reaches the brain which is important in keeping brain cells active and healthy, ensuring improved cognitive function, getting rid of toxins and helping you to think quicker and clearer.

14. If you are a food lover, then exercise ensures that you will be able to eat more of the foods that you love as you’ll be burning calories and fat, and gaining muscles.


Sources: xinmsn lifestyle


Deadly Foods We are Consuming

Human beings have the most varied diet in comparison to any other species on the planet, and over time our digestive system and stomach have become accustomed to a variety of foods that we wouldn’t have originally eaten. When we eat something we usually focus on the taste, smell or whether it is good for us. The last thing we think about is whether it is actually toxic. However, there are foods that we eat which are actually poisonous. Read on to find out which ones they are.

1. Rice

While there are many benefits to rice, especially brown rice, it really shouldn’t be eaten in large quantities as it contains arsenic which, in high levels, is extremely toxic. The odd rice bowl here or there won’t do you harm, but lots of it consistently isn’t good as high levels of arsenic have been linked to cancer.

2. Nuts

Some nuts such as almonds and cashews are a healthy snack and taste great. However, before they reach the supermarket shelves and our mouths, they are treated with heat and processed. This is essential, as the raw form of the nuts contain cyanide.


For many this fish, also known as fugu, is a delicacy, yet eating its liver, intestines and skin is poisonous as they contain tetrodotoxin. The flesh is perfectly safe to eat, but eating the other parts can cause tingling sensations, paralysis and even death.

4. Chili

While many of us like a little chili-padi on our food to give it a bit of a kick, the compound which causes the heat, capsaicin, is toxic. It has been known to cause burning sensations, inflammation, irritated skin, stomach aches and, on the rare occasion, death.

5. Mushrooms

Mushrooms are certainly classed as a super food as they are nutritional powerhouses when it comes to all their goodness. However, there are some which are extremely toxic and can be deadly. It’s best not to pick and eat wild mushrooms unless you are 100 per cent sure that they are safe.

6. Potato

Potatoes, like rice, are a staple in many people’s diets and baked or boiled, they are very good for us. However, when they are left a little too long and have green patches or grown small roots, it’s best to avoid them. The green area is due to glycoalkaloid, which is poisonous. The leaves and roots are also toxic to humans.

7. Seeds and pips

While the most part of apples, cherries, and peaches, for example, are very good for us, their seeds and pips aren’t. Again, these contain cyanide and while you would have to eat large quantities of them to be significantly poisoned, if you chew on or swallow a high number you will get sick.

8. Oil

Now we don’t mean all oils here, just castor oil. However the castor oil that we buy has been treated and prepared so that it is edible and non-toxic. Still, the actual bean contains ricin that is particularly poisonous and consuming just one bean which hasn’t been carefully prepared will kill you.

9. Bread rolls

Many breads and rolls contain the ingredient potassium bromate which is carcinogenic. While most bromate turns to bromide and is harmless, those that remain in their original form are extremely bad for us and in studies have been known to cause tumors. Due to this it’s been banned in many countries.

10. UHT/ pasteurized milk

While it isn’t poisonous as such, the UHT stands for ‘ultra heat temperature’, and the milk has been heated to an extremely high temperature. This may sound harmless, but casein, the protein in it, changes form, making it impossible for the body to digest causing allergies, asthma, skin rashes and more. It also causes mucus to form in the lungs and intestines making it hard for nutrients to be absorbed.



This alcohol is not only hallucinogenic, but contains Wormwood which is a poison when mixed wrongly or taken in too large doses. Many places have banned it and some bars that sell it will (or should) stamp a person’s hand so they can keep track of how many have been drunk. Usually only two are allowed, mainly due to its hallucinogenic affects.

Source: xinmsn lifestyle

Back exercises are equally important

Exercising the back is often forgotten by many when it comes to working out and shaping up. However, just like every other muscles in the body, they need to be worked at because they will turn to fat. If you are planning on wearing a bikini or a backless or strapless dress and avoid revealing back fat you need to give the muscles a good workout. Here are some reasons why back you should incorporate back exercises into your fitness routine.

Strengthening the back muscles can help to prevent or alleviate pain. For anyone who has ever suffered from a bad back, they know it can be extremely painful and can render them almost immobile at time. It will also prevent them from taking part in certain things, even daily activities.

Working on strengthening the back muscles will greatly help to improve a person’s posture and avoid the dreaded hunchback look and curled shoulders. A person with good posture will also appear more confident which will boost their self-esteem.

Just like a toned stomach or arms look good, so does a toned back. You don’t want to go for the muscular look, but add a little definition can make a big difference, especially if you are wearing a back revealing dress on in a bikini.

Exercising the back muscles will help to build strength, making lifting things and even walking long distances easier. Having stronger back muscles will help to prevent injuries as the muscles will help to support the spine as well as helping to maintain a good posture.

Exercises or stretching that targets the muscles in the back will also help to keep you more flexible which will give you a better rage of movement. This will ensure that you remain fully active and mobile allowing you to carry out day to day activities with ease

Back exercises will also help pregnant women as most will suffer from back ailments and their centre of gravity shifts. It will help to relieve pressure in the back, help to redistribute the weight and aid in avoiding stiffness.

Source: xinmsn lifestyle


Tips to remove your armpit fat

1. Improve your nutrition.
Food is the front line of the fat burning battle no matter where in your body you are storing fat. For ladies, these three tips help many of my clients get fast results.

a. Eat protein at every meal. This includes breakfast, and yes I mean meat. Cook it the night before and warm it up for breakfast if you are in a rush. A minimum of a playing card deck size of meat three to four times per day should do the trick.

b. Eat healthy fats in every meal. This means olive oil, fish oil (Omega-3s), macadamia nut oil, coconut oil, or butter. Flax oil is not such a good oil because it is often rancid, and is not well converted into usable forms in your body.

c. Get rid of all refined carbohydrates. No sugar, no bread, no pasta. Replace these with things that came directly from the ground and are unprocessed. Brown rice, quinoa, and sweet potatoes tend to be much better choices. If you are very overweight, even these may be too much. If that is the case, stick to veggies and perhaps one serving of fruit per day.

2. Improve your posture
Some of the arm pit fat effect is caused by a non-upright posture. Years of constantly being slouched over a computer, car steering wheel, or desk will often result in a hunch back posture that emphasizes arm pit fat.

To work on this, do stretches for your hip flexors, and pectoral muscles. In addition when you do exercise, avoid long distance cardio which encourages a slouched posture. Instead do strength training for the weak muscles of your upper back, and hips which will improve your posture.

3. Finally if you have an imbalance in your hormones which results in you having overly-feminine hormone balances, this can result in your body storing fat in a female fat storage pattern. i.e. more fat on the chest and buttocks/thighs. Certain nutrients can improve this situation on a hormonal level. The most basic and easily found one is zinc. Zinc reduces the risk of your female hormones going overboard, and it is sorely lacking in most people’s diets.

a. When looking for a zinc supplement, look for those that end with an “-ate” in the contents. For example Zinc Orot-“ate” or Zinc Aspart-“ate”. These are the better quality, and more absorbable forms of zinc.

So there we have it. Get rid of bad foods, do the right stretches and training, and get yourself a zinc supplement.


Source: xinmsn lifestyle

Tips to burn unwanted fat.

Getting rid of the unsightly extra fat that we have is the main reason workout and most people will know that it can be hard to shift. You need to make sure you burn more than you put into your body and that means burning those pesky calories and putting a lot of effort in. You also need to be exercising at least three times a week and for between 20 minutes to an hour. Read on to find out our list of the best fat burning tips and exercises.

Interval training is one of the best workouts for blasting away the fat. Whatever exercise you do, make sure that you work-out at your maximum for a minute and then workout at a slower pace for a couple. Keep doing this for as long as possible as it is all about getting your heart rate up and then at resting pace again.

Make sure that you are breathing properly when you exercise as the fat that we want to get rid of needs oxygen to actually burn. Making sure that you are taken deep breaths will ensure more oxygen is carried around the body by the blood, and most importantly the fat and muscles. Lighter and longer exercises are therefore best when it comes to burning fat.

A spinning class is a great way to burn fat and the amount of calories which can be burned varies a lot as the intensity varies greatly. It’s an intense physical workout that helps to develop muscles to burn fat. For many it’s the ultimate calorie burner. You’ll also be adding resistance to the legs and detoxing from all the sweat as it’s done in a heated room.

If you want to get the maximum out of your cardio workout, do 10-15 minutes of strength training beforehand because the body takes that long to warm up before it actually burns any fat. Rather than burning fat for the last 10-15 minutes of your cardio, burn it for the entire session with a proper warm up.

If you are wanting to tone muscles and burn fat, then resistance training is great for this, as it is strength building exercises that build the muscles using resistance and the more muscles, the more fat you burn. Dumbbells or water aerobics are example of resistance training and is best when alternated with aerobic exercise in a workout regime.

Its important to keep increasing the intensity of your workout if you want to consistently burn the extra fat. You will find that you reach a plateau where you aren’t burning more fat if you don’t as your body will have got use to the demands. By increasing the intensity, your body will have to be constantly challenging itself, working harder and burning more fat.

Kickboxing is a great way to tone up and burn fat which requires cardio and resistance training as many classes will offer strength exercises. You can increase the level of intensity too which, as we have seen, is essential.

Elliptical machines are a great way to do an aerobic activity, while having some resistance, especially as the machine has moving arms. It will give the body an allover workout, protect the joints, allows you to breath deeply to get plenty of oxygen to the fat and muscles and burns plenty of calories.

Exercise in the morning when you have an empty stomach. That way the body will have to get energy from fat that is stored, rather than what you have eaten that day. If you don’t think you’ll have enough energy or won’t work out for as long, then grab a banana and eat it 15 minutes before you exercise to give you a blast of energy.

To tone that stomach, do 10 slow crunches rather than 20 fast ones, as more is less in this case as you are likely to use momentum rather than your muscles. Take your time over crunches rather than race through them to get them out the way. You’ll use a better form which will work the right muscles and more muscle means more fat burned.

Make sure that you don’t forget about your back, as although you can’t see it, you will have fat deposits there too. A rowing machine will work the muscles in the back toning them and encouraging the fat burning process because when you pull something, the upper back muscles are used. Make sure you are sitting straight and breathing deeply.

Source: xinmsn lifestyle

Herbs are Good for You

1. They improve the flavour and taste of food without adding hidden or unhealthy excess calories. No matter what kind of diet you might be on, most, if not all, herbs will fit right into your diet plan. No matter what kind of diet you are on (low carb, high protein, paleo style, reduced calories etc) herbs can help you boost your results and make your taste buds happy as well.

2. Herbs and spices overflow with stuff that are good for you – vitamins, minerals, all sorts of health-giving phytochemicals and antioxidants etc. These are best found in their natural form rather than in their chemically produced and often ineffective artificial forms found in many multi-vitamins or mineral supplements.

3. In general, they make everything taste so much better without adding evil stuff to what you put into your mouth – artificial colors, chemical preservatives, trans-fats. Well, that is assuming your herbs were not grown close enough to the freeway to absorb tonnes of toxic metals and the like, or on a commercial farm that abuses pesticides and fertilizers the way some bodybuilders abuse steroids.

Consider going organic for herbs because there is a large variance in the quality of herbs and the amount of active ingredients they contain, so herbs are one of those things where cheaper is not better.

Cardamom – stimulate bile flow for liver health and fat metabolism, reduces flatulence, contains limonene that boosts the body’s production of an enzyme with antioxidant properties.

Cinnamon – helps reduce blood sugar and “bad” cholesterol by increasing insulin sensitivity (i.e. nutrients go to your muscles not your fat cells!)

Cloves – One tablespoonful contains the RDA of manganese for women. Also contains potassium, calcium and phytosterols in significant proportions.

Cumin – has antimicrobial properties, is a good source of iron, helps reduce heartburn and improves digestion.

Garlic – lowers cholesterol and prevents blood clots, current research suggests strongly that garlic has anti-cancer properties, helps in weight control.

Ginger – anti-inflammatory, research suggests it lowers cholesterol.

Parsley – freshens the breath

Tumeric – anti-inflammatory, possible benefits for Alzheimer’s, cancers, digestive disorders and insulin regulation. Aids recovery from injury.

So incorporate herbs and spices into your diet, as much as you can, as often as you can, in every creative way possible! You’ll not just get all those health benefits, but you’ll also enjoy your food more, so it’ll be easy to stay with your healthy lifestyle. That means you’ll surely get those fat burning, fat loss results that you want!

Source: xinmsn lifestyle

Energy Boosting Foods

Having a lack of energy is something that can affect us all and there are many things that can cause it. Making sure you eat the right foods and giving your body sufficient fuel can help you to regain your energy levels. Conquer that 3pm slump and give yourself an energy boost with these foods.

Make sure that you have breakfast to help you get through the morning and prevent you from eating too much of the wrong foods at lunch. Eating more during the day when you need energy, rather than in the evening, will assure your levels remain high. Scrambled egg whites, smoked salmon on a bagel is a substantial meal which will give ongoing energy.

For a quick boost of energy, aim for fruit, such as a banana. You’ll get your carbohydrates which your body needs to burn and is the fastest way to get energy. The potassium is bananas is an electrolyte which helps to prolong muscle function.

Berries or foods rich in antioxidants will the the body to eliminate and combat the toxins and chemicals in the body which cause fatigue. Try a handful of blueberries on yogurt as the magnesium in the yogurt are important for digestion and help to release energy.

Watermelon contains four minerals which help to combat low energy; potassium, vitamin C, iron and lycopene. Add it to salad or have it after a meal as a powerful addition to your energy boosting meal.

Beans and lentils are great for when your body needs energy. They contain carbohydrates, protein and fiber and releases glucose slowly, meaning your body has a sustained release of energy.

Having low levels of iron will cause fatigue and low energy as calls suffocate and can’t burn carbohydrates properly. A steak will help to increase your iron levels as the body easily absorbs the mineral from it.

For an afternoon snack which is healthy, have some hummus with vegetable sticks. Hummus contains protein and the vegetables provide carbohydrates and fibre. These will help to fill you up and give you energy. It’s great if your trying to lose weight.

Another healthy snack would be a handful of nuts as they contain magnesium which is needed by the body to turn sugar into energy. A lack of magnesium is known to drain energy reserves and cause fatigue.

For sustained energy go for a combination of foods, such as carbohydrates, protein and fats. They are all digested at different times and processed differently. Therefore you’ll have sustained energy release. A turkey sandwich on whole grain bread is ideal.

Water is essential for your body to function properly and without it, it won’t be able to create energy and it is needed for digestion and transporting nutrients. Being dehydrated can cause fatigue.

To give yourself a short-term energy kick and to keep you alert, have a cup of coffee. It helps to increase metabolism therefore speeding up digestion and ensuring those essential nutrients are used for energy. Only have a cup or two a day.

Source: xinmsn lifestyle


For sustained energy go for a combination of foods, such as carbohydrates, protein and fats. They are all digested at different times and processed differently. Therefore you’ll have sustained energy release. A turkey sandwich on whole grain bread is ideal.

Low-carb diet poses no risk to heart health.

Though low-carb, high-fat diets have suffered a bad rap for being a health hazard, a pair of new studies suggests they pose no immediate risk to vascular health in obese people. It’s a finding that’s likely to drum up more debate about the effectiveness of high-protein diets, which yield quick, visible results but are much maligned for being high in fat.

In the first study, presented June 3 at the annual meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine in Denver, researchers from Johns Hopkins University found no harmful vascular changes in a group of 23 overweight participants who followed a low-carb, high-fat diet.During a six-month weight-loss program that involved moderate exercise and a diet made up of 30 percent carbs and 40 percent fats like meat, dairy and nut products, the group — with an average individual weight of 218 pounds (99 kg) — lost an average of 10 pounds (4.5 kg) in 45 days.
Meanwhile, another group assigned to a low-fat diet took on average a month longer to lose the same amount of weight. Participants followed a diet that consisted of 30 percent fat and 55 percent carbs.

The findings prompted researchers to give the low-carb diet a ringing endorsement in a statement that seems to make the high-protein option an unequivocally healthy diet alternative. The report itself was prompted by concerns from people who wanted to follow a low-carb diet like Atkins, South Beach or the Zone but were wary of the diets’ higher fat content.

“Our study should help allay the concerns that many people who need to lose weight have about choosing a low-carb diet instead of a low-fat one, and provide re-assurance that…[a] low-carb approach does not seem to pose any immediate risk to vascular health,” said lead author, Kerry Stewart.”More people should be considering a low-carb diet as a good option.”

A second study that will also be presented separately at the conference found that after feeding participants high-fat breakfast meals from McDonald’s, no immediate or short-term impact on vascular health was detected. In fact, the study found that participants’ blood vessels were less stiff when tested four hours after the meal. Participants ate two muffin sandwiches — one with egg and one with sausage — hash browns and decaf coffee.

Meanwhile, Pierre Dukan, the French equivalent of Robert Atkins for also touting a high-protein diet, has been busy lately putting out fires set by archrivals, doctors and French food authorities who have slammed his low-carb diet as dangerous. Disciples of The Dukan Diet include Carole Middleton, Jennifer Lopez and Gisele Bundchen. The book was launched in North America in April.

This week, for example, Dukan took his archrival and another best-selling diet book author Dr. Jean-Michel Cohen to court, suing him for libel. Last year, Cohen, who advocates a 1,600-calorie diet in his book Savoir Maigrir (“Know how to lose weight”), slammed the Dukan diet to a French magazine, saying it can lead to future health problems and heart disease.

An investigation carried out by French women’s magazine Journal des Femmes found that 75 percent of people regained the weight they’d lost within two years. And last year, the French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety slammed the diet for depriving the body of certain nutrients like magnesium and being overly high in others, like calcium and sodium.

Source: xinmsn lifestyle

Mangoes & Almonds Can Improve Male Infertility

According to the latest research out of the University of Western Australia, men who consume antioxidant-rich foods like carrots, sweet potatoes and mangoes have healthier sperm, which can help their baby-making abilities.

The study, published July 18 in the journal Ecology Letters, found that the best defense against sperm damage was the combination of two powerful antioxidants: vitamin E and beta-carotene. The study, which was performed on crickets, suggests that dietary intake of foods like cantaloupe, carrots, apricots, pumpkin and mangos — orange-colored foods rich in beta-carotene — and almonds, soybean oil, and broccoli, which are rich in vitamin E, could help maintain healthy sperm in men.

To carry out their hypothesis, scientists used crickets to pit the sperm of several different males in direct competition to fertilize the female’s egg — some were put on antioxidant-rich diets, and others went deprived.
In the animal kingdom it’s typical for females to have the sperm of several males inside them at any given time, said researcher Leigh Simmons. In their experiment, the antioxidant-fueled sperm proved to be faster swimmers.

“It is fair to say that the sperm are at war within the female, and we can expect that the most competitive sperm will win the race to the egg,” Simmons said. “Our study showed that the sperm of males who were fed antioxidants were easily able to outclass the sperm of rival males who were deprived of antioxidants.”
The Australian study follows on the heels of another review published in January in The Cochrane Library, which also found that men with low sperm counts or sperm mobility who took oral antioxidants like vitamin E, zinc and magnesium improved their chances of impregnating their partner.

Foods rich in vitamin E: almonds, wheat germ, safflower, corn and soybean oils; mangos, nuts, broccoli
Foods rich in beta-carotene: orange foods like sweet potatoes, carrots, cantaloupe, squash, apricots, pumpkin, and mangos, as well as leafy green vegetables like collard greens, spinach and kale.

Source: xinmsn lifestyle


Allow Your Eyes to Rest

1. Stop staring at your computer screen

A healthy tear production is required to keep our eyes moist, said Raymund Song, senior professional service manager of Bausch+Lomb. However, the environment and lifestyle factors, such as those mentioned above, can alter the quality and the quantity of tears.

Among the various factors, the eye experts said that spending long hours doing near work – staring at the computer screens, watching flickering images at close range on a tiny screen, et cetera – is probably the main culprit for dry eyes.

Song explained: “When we’re doing near work, there is a tendency for our eyes to blink less. This results in tears evaporating away, which causes our eyes to feel dry.”

Age is another factor – the older we get, the less tears we produce and drier our eyes become.

2. Lubricate your eyes regularly

Dr Lee advises to “moisture” their eyes whenever they are red or starting to feel tired, scratchy, or itchy.

“Many people feel that using lubricant eye drops is a ‘treatment’. This is a misconception. After all, many people also use moisturiser on their hands and face daily. You should treat your eyes like your skin,” he said.

3. Tips to keep your eyes well-lubricated

According to Raymund Song, the pH of healthy tears lies within the range of 7.3 to 7.7. Pure water has a pH of 7. Maintaining a healthy tear production can help keep dry eyes at bay.

– Have a balance diet and keep yourself well-hydrated.

– Seek medical advice from a doctor to get to the root of your dry eye problem.

– If you wear make-up, avoid having them enter your eyes. Certain oil-based cosmetics can irritate the eye, especially if you are wearing contact lenses.

– Contact lens wearers should clean their lenses properly with an appropriate lens care solution, and follow the recommended wearing hours advised by their optometrist.

– Keep those blasts of air – from the fan, air-conditioning – away from your eyes.

– Don’t forget to blink. Take eye breaks from long periods of reading or working on the computer.

Source: xinmsn lifestyle