Fiber is one of the least eaten and understood nutrients. Most people know about how fiber helps the digestive system but few know about how it helps with heart disease, cholesterol, and weight loss. It is estimated that Americans only get about 15 grams of fiber per day even though the recommendations for women are 21-25 grams and men 30-38 grams. There are two types of fiber, soluble and insoluble. Each one has its own share of benefits.
One of my favorite sayings is “control what you can control”. There are many things that we cannot control like our jobs, new born babies not sleeping, family member illness, etc. How we deal with these situations, whether we want to hear it or not, is completely under our control. We make the decision on what we eat, how much exercise we get, how much water we drink. etc. Here are some tips to help you deal with some of life’s obstacles and take control of your health:
We have all been there. Had a great workout and soon after we are ready to eat up the whole kitchen. I call this workout hunger. It is a common occurrence and a big reason that weight loss does not happen, no matter how much we exercise. In the time it takes for you to go from famished to full, you have effectively eaten all the calories that you burned working out.
Growing up one of my moms sayings was “too much stress can kill you”. When you are young you brush stuff like that off but adulthood has a way of making that statement all too real. So much research has come out in the past 10 yrs about the toll stress takes on your body. It has been proven that stress increases the risk for stroke and chronic disease, suppresses your immune system, increases weight gain, etc. If you are stressed out all the time it may not be tomorrow, it may not be next week or next month but one of these days it will catch up to you.
Water is one of those essential nutrients that we know we need but almost never get enough of. Water lubricates our joints, keeps our skin soft, gives us energy, helps us regulate internal temperature, etc. The list can keep going on and on but few people recognize how instrumental it is to weight loss and weight management.
One of the most important things water does is keep your liver functioning in tip top shape. This may seem small but your liver along with the kidneys are the organs that get rid of the waste and fat in the body. If you are not getting enough water (half of your body weight or more in oz per day) it cannot get rid of the waste and fat as efficiently as it could be.
Another way that water aids us in weight loss and management is with our hunger and thirst mechanisms. Thirty-seven percent of Americans have a thirst mechanism so weak that we think we are hungry when our body just craves water. This can cause us to overeat on a daily basis contributing to weight gain. What I generally do is if I feel hungry I drink a cup or two of water and wait 10-15 min. If I feel hungry after that I eat but a lot of times my stomach ache and headache go away.
Quick ways to drink more water:
1. Drink water with at least half of your meals instead of juices and sodas. Not only is this healthier for you but it can potentially save you thousands of calories over the course of the year
2. Keep a bottle of water in your car and office
3. Eat more fruits and veggies. The high water content in them will help add your hydration