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Commit To Lifetime Health And Fitness Avoid Heart Disease

August 1st, 2006

Menachem Green

Lifetime fitness is a commitment. It is the belief that keeping our minds and bodies healthy is more than just a noble idea; it requires definite actions that need to be taken on a regular basis. It is making conscious decisions that must be executed to ensure our lifetime goal. Lifetime health and fitness is a commitment to a lifestyle change to live a happier and healthier life.

Since the turn of the century, the average life span in the United States has increased markedly from 47 years old in 1900 to 77.3 years old at the turn of the century. While the rapid developments in new medical technology and medicine can be credited with most of the increases, a lack of commitment to lifetime fitness means that a majority of these people did not enjoy happy, healthy lifestyles.

Sadly, 33 percent of high school students across the country do not participate in the recommended amount of lifetime health and fitness activities as outlined by the Surgeon General and the President’s Council on Physical Fitness. This lack of activity in fitness programs often carries into adulthood, where the number of people without lifetime exercise and fitness program increases.

According to a lifetime fitness report by the National Institute on Aging, only 58 percent of the American population engages in a lifetime fitness program that involves leisure time vigorous activity and of those people, only 26 percent do so three or more times a week as part of their lifetime fitness program.

So how does a lifetime exercise and fitness program improve your quality of life?

The Center for Disease Control lists the following top five annual causes of death in the United States.

* Heart disease: 696,947 deaths
* Cancer: 557,271 deaths
* Stroke: 162,672 deaths
* Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 124,816 deaths
* Accidents (unintentional injuries): 106,742 deaths

With the exception of accidental deaths, all other leading forms of death could have been avoided or delayed with a lifetime health and fitness program that included exercise, a healthy diet, and non-smoking.

When a lifetime health and fitness program includes a diet that low in cholesterol, a significant reduction in the build up of fatty deposits called plaque is noticeable in the arteries. If too much plaque forms in the arteries, they become clogged, reducing the amount of blood and oxygen that circulate to the coronary arteries, and can ultimately lead to a heart attack or stroke.

A healthy lifetime fitness program should never include cigarette smoking. Smoking has been linked to cancer, chronic respiratory problems, and cancer.

In 1986, Shirechiyo Izumi of Japan died at the age of 120 years, 237 days. What kind of lifetime fitness commitment do you think Izumi had?

Heart Health Diets and Exercises

Learn how to enjoy your health and avoid heart disease through proper diets and exercises. Learn How to Live a healthy active lifestyle!

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Menachem_Green

Aromatherapy as an Aid to Achieve Lifetime Fitness

May 5th, 2006

Sanjay Johari

Developing a strong body resistance is imperative to attain lifetime fitness. Diseases can be roughly divided in two categories – diseases due to internal physical disorders and diseases due to external infections. Aromatherapy is particularly useful for combating the second type. I would like to mention here that even for fighting external infections and for ensuring lifetime fitness, the natural body resistance is the best protection. Aromatherapy should be considered as an aid only.

You surely would have heard a thing or two about aromatherapy, the art of using aroma-rich essential oils to achieve mental and physical health. Aromatherapy has surely come a long way from its past. Nowadays, aromatherapy experts can readily boast of using their art to relief stress, treat depression and to improve mental health.

However, what is new in the field and study of aromatherapy seems to be its newfound effect on some disease causing pathogens, especially virus. Not more than twenty years back, a German scientist discovered more than a hundred different specie of a particular plant family known as Lamiacea to be particularly effective in attacking viral infections. This lead to a surge in the study of how well some plant extract can help the human body fight pathogenic diseases.

With the increase research in this area, several plants’ essential oils have now been shown to be antiviral in effect. Although, there are some limitations in this respect. First, studies with application of these oils to specific viral diseases are difficult to come by, since it is not easy to infect a subject in a lab with a particular virus and then apply the oils for result. Secondly, it is relatively difficult to ascertain the exact virus type involved in a disease making a specific application of the relevant oil more difficult.

Nevertheless, a good number of plant essential oils have been shown to exhibit anti viral properties. It is noteworthy, however, that most of these known oils vary in their effectiveness depending on the virus type. The different oils are made up of different molecular units and structures making then different in their strength and mode of action.

The effectiveness of these oils in fighting viral infections is in part due the ease with which they can penetrate the human body cells and tissues. Most of these plants’ oils are known to be lipophilic i.e. attracted towards fat/lipid tissues, which is perhaps why they can penetrate cell membranes with so much ease. It is even said that through the use of some aromatic oils, normal body cells tend to become resistant to viral penetration.

Several different oils could be seen to exert similar antiviral effects, due to the fact that they contain similar amount of a particular component. Essential oils are only effective against viral strain depending on their component. The number of known oils that exhibit antiviral properties is quite extensive, but a few examples will do.

The Melissa plant, a member of the Lamiaceae plant family studied, has been to shown to be particularly useful in treating the Herpes virus infection. It is said that a one time application of the Melissa oil can lead to a complete remission of the virus and that further infection can be prevented by applying the oil to the area about three to four times, when one starts getting the feelings and signs that foretell eminent outbreak of the viral infection.

Also, the eucalyptus and tea tree are said to be effective in treating infections of the respiratory tract. In such cases, the essentials oils could be applied through massaging, diluted in carrier oil or in a diffuser to achieve this purpose. Some other notable oils that are known to be efficacious in fighting viral infections include, thyme, palmarosa, lavender, rosemary, clove, laurel, cinnamon bark, anise, rose, lemongrass, geranium, neroli, bergamot, clary sage, and dill. Lavender oil is particularly known to work very well in relieving stress and soothing aches in the body, besides its antiviral properties.

Aromatherapy is extremely useful and it is upto the individual to decide how much of it should be used to supplement other practices to maintain lifetime fitness.

Cortisol, Stress & Body Fat Straight Answers To The Top 20 Questions – Cortisol, Stress & Body Fat

May 5th, 2006

Cortisol, Stress & Body Fat
Straight Answers To The Top 20 Questions
About The “Stress Hormone”

By: Tom Venuto, NSCA-CPT, CSCS
.
It seems that every time science uncovers some type of association between body fat and anything, opportunistic entrepreneurs are waiting in the shadows to create a product and a marketing campaign around it. They ride the wave into the multi millions, until the buzz dies down or until the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sues and slaps a padlock on their warehouse doors. Then, it’s on to the “next big thing in weight loss,” because they know there will always be a gullible crowd eagerly waiting for the next quick fix. The most recent example is when researchers discovered a correlation between cortisol and abdominal body fat. Cortisol was then blamed as the latest culprit in the obesity problem, and cortisol-suppressing pills were touted as the “miracle solution.”

Big Claims, Little Proof

After a web search on the subject of cortisol, here are some of the claims you may find:

Stress makes you fat
Cortisol is what makes you fat
Cortisol reducing supplements control stress
Cortisol reducing supplements reduce belly fat
Cortisol reducing supplements get rid of “stress fat”
Cortisol reducing supplements balance hormone levels that cause stress
Cortisol reducing supplements increase muscle growth
Cortisol supplements suppress appetite
Cortisol supplements speed up metabolism

The advertising claims include just enough scientific fact to make even the savviest consumers say, “That makes sense, I think I’ll try that.” They also hit home emotionally by focusing on common hot buttons such as stress (who isn’t at least a little stressed in this day and age?) Brilliant marketing. Convincing. Unfortunately, most of the claims being made are completely false, with only a tiny thread of truth woven in.

Cortisol is a very important hormone that you must understand if you want to get maximum results from your training and nutrition programs, but if you don’t educate yourself, you may become one of the millions of victims to fall for this latest fad. The answers to the frequently asked questions in this article will arm you with the science-based facts, while helping you steer clear of the hype-based scams.

What is cortisol?

Cortisol is a hormone produced by your adrenal glands. It falls into a category of hormones known as “glucocorticoids”, referring to their ability to increase blood glucose levels. Cortisol is the primary glucocorticoid.

Why does your body produce cortisol?

Cortisol is a stress hormone. Your body produces cortisol in response to stress, physical, mental or emotional. This can include extremely low calorie diets, intense training, high volume training, lack of quality sleep as well as common daily stresses such as job pressures, fights with your spouse or being caught in a traffic jam. Trauma, injury and surgery are also major stressors to the body (Note: much of the research done on cortisol and stress has been done on recovering patients, and such findings may not carry over to healthy, athletic populations).

What does cortisol do?

Cortisol is part of the fight or flight response. Faced with a “life or death” situation, cortisol increases the flow of glucose (as well as protein and fat) out of your tissues and into the bloodstream in order to increase energy and physical readiness to handle the stressful situation or threat.

How do you know whether your cortisol levels are high?

You can get your cortisol levels tested if you choose to. The most common method of testing is a blood test (blood cortisol levels). Saliva and 24 hour urine tests are also available.

What is a normal level of cortisol?

Cortisol levels are higher in adults than children and levels fluctuate throughout each 24 hour period, so tests must account for the time of day. Cortisol concentrations are highest in the early morning around 6 to 8 a.m. and they are also elevated after exercise (a normal part of your body’s response to exercise). The lowest levels are usually around midnight. According to the Medline Encyclopedia, normal levels of cortisol in the bloodstream at 8:00 a.m. are 6-23 mcg/dl.

Should you get your cortisol levels tested?

For serious competitive athletes, it may be worth the time, expense and inconvenience to have cortisol tests done on a regular basis. Some strength and conditioning coaches insist on it. For the average trainee, as long as you are aware of the factors that produce excessive cortisol and take steps to keep it in the normal, healthy range, then testing is probably not necessary.

Is cortisol related to abdominal obesity?

Yes. There is a link between high cortisol levels and storage of body fat, particularly “visceral” abdominal body fat (also known as intra-abdominal fat). Visceral fat is stored deeper in the abdominal cavity and around the internal organs, whereas “regular” fat is stored below the skin (known as subcutaneous fat). Visceral fat is particularly unhealthy because it is a risk factor for heart disease and diabetes.

Does Cortisol Make you fat?

No, cortisol is not ‘the thing” that makes you fat. In fact, one of the effects of cortisol is to increase the breakdown of stored adipose tissue into glycerol and fatty acids where it can enter the bloodstream and then be used as energy. High levels of cortisol are merely one contributing factor to storage of abdominal fat, not the primary cause. An excess of calories from too much food and not enough exercise is what makes you fat.

If cortisol is related to abdominal obesity, then will taking a cortisol suppressing pill get rid of abdominal (belly) fat?

No. Just because there is an association between high cortisol levels and abdominal body fat doesn’t mean that a taking a cortisol-suppressing pill will remove abdominal body fat. The studies which showed a relationship between cortisol and body fat did not test whether suppressing cortisol removes fat that is already deposited on your body.

Does stress make you fat?

No. If it did, then everyone who is stressed would be gaining fat. Many people lose weight while under stress. In some studies, test subjects with the highest cortisol levels lost the most weight. Stress, by itself, does not increase body fat. However, if stress stimulates appetite and leads to overeating, then the excess calories from “stress eating” can make you fatter.

Is cortisol is bad for you?

Cortisol is not “bad for you,” it is a hormone that is essential for life as part of our natural stress response. There are many hormones in our bodies, which in the proper amounts, maintain good health, but in excess or in deficiency, have negative effects or even contribute to health problems or diseases. Cortisol is no different. For example, Cushing’s syndrome is a disease of high cortisol levels, while Addison’s is a disease of low cortisol levels. You want to maintain a healthy, normal level of cortisol, not suppress your cortisol to nothing or allow it to remain elevated.

Chronically elevated cortisol levels may have a variety of negative effects. Cortisol is catabolic and elevated cortisol levels can cause the loss of muscle tissue by facilitating the process of converting lean tissue into glucose. An excess of cortisol can also lead to a decrease in insulin sensitivity, increased insulin resistance, reduced kidney function, hypertension, suppressed immune function, reduced growth hormone levels, and reduced connective tissue strength. Chronically elevated levels of cortisol can also decrease strength and performance in athletes.

Can suppressing cortisol improve your muscle growth and strength?

High cortisol levels can increase muscle protein breakdown and inhibit protein synthesis (building up muscle proteins), so a chronically elevated cortisol level is clearly counterproductive to building muscle. Bringing elevated cortisol levels back to normal may improve recovery, strength, hypertrophy and performance. However, there is no scientific evidence that reducing your cortisol levels below normal will have any effect on increasing strength or muscle growth.

Should you take a cortisol-suppressing supplement to help you lose weight?

In my opinion, no, absolutely not. Cortisol suppressing supplements are not a valid solution for losing weight. The FTC has filed lawsuits against the makers of Cortislim and Cortistress, charging them with making false and unsubstantiated claims that their products can cause weight loss. Lydia Parnes, acting director of the FTC’s bureau of consumer protection says, “The defendant’s claims fly in the face of reality. No pill can replace a healthy program of diet and exercise.” Reducing excessively high cortisol levels through supplement use may prove beneficial in some ways for hard training athletes. However, pills do not make you lose fat. Body fat is lost by creating a caloric deficit through exercise and nutrition.

Should you take a cortisol-suppressing supplement to help control your stress levels?

There are quite a few supplements, mostly herbs, which are reputed to have “calming,” “relaxing,” “tranquilizing,” “stress-relieving” or “anti-anxiety” effects. These include Magnolia bark, kava kava, valerian, L-theanine and too many others to mention. However, very few studies exist which have directly tested the effects of these herbs on cortisol levels. Although some people may find value in these types of products, the ideal solution is to reduce the stress or change your perception of the stress to lessen its physical effects. Treating symptoms does not remove causes. It can be dangerous to “band-aid” the effects of stress while the stress remains in place.

What should you do if you have a lot of stress in your life?

It makes sense to take steps to reduce stress in your life and lessen the impact of stressors that cannot be avoided. Trying to avoid stress completely is not possible, nor is it desirable. Stress is an important part of life because you can’t achieve positive adaptations and growth without stress to trigger them. It’s continuous stress that you want to avoid. It’s okay to expose yourself to stress, provided there is a sufficient period of rest afterwards so you can fully recover.

One of the best ways to keep cortisol in the normal range is to reduce stress and allow time for recovery and renewal. There are effective and natural means of reducing stress that don’t cost a penny, including getting out in nature, deep breathing, enhancing sleep quality, relaxation exercises, meditation and visualization-guided imagery. It’s important to develop a calm mind and sense of tranquility.

What’s in those cortisol pills anyway?

The ingredients can vary in type and quantity from one brand to the next. Some ingredients are included in the formulations to have a relaxing or stress reducing effect, some are included to reduce cortisol levels, while others are aimed at insulin and blood sugar stabilization. Cortislim, for example, contains Magnolia bark, beta sitosoterol, theanine, green tea extract, bitter orange peel extract (source of synephrine), banaba leaf extract, vanadium, vitamin C, calcium and Chromium.

Other ingredients that are often used in the various product formulations include Epidemium, phytosterols, tyrosine, Branched chain amino acids, ginseng, ashwaganda, astragalus, kava kava, St. John’s wort, Melatonin, SAM-e, Valerian, Gingko Biloba, Phosphatidyl Serine (PS), Acetyl L-carnitine and Glutamine. Reviewing all of these is beyond the scope of this article.

If you decide to take a cortisol suppressing supplement what should you look for?

Before you even think about supplements (or drugs), keep in mind that unnatural suppression of cortisol may not be wise or necessary, especially if you haven’t used all the natural cortisol and stress management strategies at your disposal first. Once your nutrition, training and recovery bases are covered, there is some solid research showing that certain supplements may be beneficial, especially for athletes engaged in extremely hard training.

Carbohydrate consumed with lean protein immediately after training has a cortisol suppressing effect. High glycemic index (GI) carbs in particular, cause an insulin spike, which not only helps restore muscle glycogen, stimulates protein synthesis and kick starts the recovery process, it also helps lower the exercise-induced rise in cortisol. The research supporting this practice is substantial. (This should serve as a warning to people on low carb diets that are so strict that they don’t even allow small amounts of carbs after workouts). Rather than solid food, many athletes prefer a liquid “meal” using a commercial post workout drink containing whey protein and maltodextrin plus dextrose or glucose (fast acting protein and high GI carbs) because the rapid absorption time may speed recovery.

Vitamin C, known mainly for cold or flu protection and antioxidant properties, may decrease cortisol levels. A study by Marsit, et al showed a reduction in cortisol levels in elite weightlifters taking 1000 mg. of vitamin C per day. Other studies have reported similar findings.

Phosphatidyl serine (PS) is a phospholipid, which appears to have cortisol suppressing properties. Studies by Fahey and Monteleone have shown that daily doses of 800 mg can reduce cortisol. These studies did not conclude that PS would help you lose weight or gain more muscle.

Glutamine is an amino acid, which in some studies, has been shown to decrease cortisol and prevent a decrease in protein synthesis. Many strength athletes swear by glutamine for improved recovery, but the research is still not conclusive about efficacy or dosages for athletes or bodybuilders. Much of the research on Glutamine was performed on patients recovering from surgery, burns or traumas (severe stresses to the body).

Acetyl-L Carnitine (ALC) has been studied in Alzheimers patients as a method of improving cognitive function. One study showed that long term use of Acetyl L Carnitine lowered cortisol in the Alzheimers patients. Research on rats and mice has shown that ALC increases luteinizing hormone, which may in turn elevate testosterone. Whether these findings carry over to healthy athletes has yet to be proven, but some coaches and athletes believe that ALC lowers cortisol and elevates testosterone.

It’s important to note that the research on some of these substances is often conflicting and inconclusive. It’s also important to note that many of the cortisol suppressing supplements which are marketed to athletes or to people seeking weight loss do not contain doses anywhere near the amounts that were used in the research. (Yet another way that supplement companies deceive consumers).

How can you lower your cortisol levels naturally?

You can lower cortisol naturally. In fact, if you are overtrained, unnatural cortisol suppression may be nothing more than a “band aid,” and continued overtraining can lead to adrenal exhaustion, which could take months to remedy. Sometimes the best thing you can do is take a rest or decrease your training volume and intensity rather than artificially attempt to suppress cortisol. Symptoms of overtraining include elevated resting pulse, sleep disturbances, fatigue, decreased strength and decreased performance.

Avoid very low calorie diets, especially for prolonged periods of time. Low calorie dieting is a major stress to the body. Low calorie diets increase cortisol while decreasing testosterone.

Use stress reduction techniques (stress, anger, anxiety, and fear can raise cortisol)

Avoid continuous stress. Stress is an important part of growth. It’s when you remain under constant stress without periods of recovery that you begin breaking down.

Avoid overtraining by keeping workouts intense, but brief (cortisol rises sharply after 45-60 min of strength training)

Avoid overtraining by matching your intensity, volume and duration to your recovery ability. Decrease your training frequency, and or take a layoff if necessary.

Suppress cortisol and maximize recovery after workouts with proper nutrition: Consume a carb-protein meal or drink immediately after your workout.

Get plenty of quality sleep (sleep deprivation, as a stressor, can raise cortisol).
Avoid or minimize use of stimulants; caffeine, ephedrine, synephrine, etc.

Limit alcohol (large doses of alcohol elevate cortisol).

Stay well hydrated (at least one study has suggested that dehydration may raise cortisol).

How do you spot a weight loss pill scam?

The cortisol pill is just one in a long string of bogus weight loss products, and it won’t be the last! Why? Because weight loss supplements are big business! Eight or nine figure fortunes have been made from the sales of a single product, which was later proven to be a total farce.

How do you protect yourself? Do your homework! Don’t take anything unless you know exactly what’s in the product, why it’s in the product and how much is in the product. Review the scientific research. Don’t buy a weight loss product just because a radio personality says it works! Don’t jump on the phone with your credit card in hand after watching a thirty-minute infomercial! In this day and age, you have to be smarter than that!

Conclusions

Excessive cortisol is not good. But cortisol is not inherently bad; it’s a vitally important hormone and part of your body’s natural stress response. Cortisol does not make you fat. Stress does not make you fat. Stress may lead to increased appetite& Increased appetite may lead to eating too much& Eating too much makes you gain fat. Make sense?

Cortisol suppressing agents may have some practical uses. But rather than thinking of cortisol supplements as a weight loss miracle (which they most surely are not), get yourself on a solid exercise and nutrition program and seek natural ways enhance recovery and reduce stress. By doing this first, you may be pleasantly surprised to find that you’re losing fat and gaining muscle and there isn’t even a need to take a supplement at all.

For more information on how to lose body fat safely, permanently and naturally without supplements or pills, check out Tom’s e-book, Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle at http://www.BurnTheFat.com .

References:

1. Bidzinska, B., et al., Effect of different chronic intermittent stressors and acetyl L Carnitine on hypothalamic beta endorphin and GnRH and on plasma testosterone levels in male rats. Neuroendocrinology, 1993, 57(6): 985-990

2. Bjorntorp, P., Body fat distribution, insulin resistance, and metabolic diseases. Nutrition, 1997, 13: 795-803

3. Bjorntorp, P., Do stress reactions cause abdominal obesity and comorbidities? Obesity Reviews, 2001, 2: 73-86

4. Brillon, et al., Effect of cortisol on energy expenditure and amino acid metabolism in humans, Am J Physiol 268 1995: E501-13.

5. Bruno, G, et al,, Acetyl L Carnitine in Alzheimer disease: a short term study on CSF neurotransmitters and neuropeptides. Anzeihmer Disease & Associated Disorders, 1995. 9(3): p. 128-131

6. Chrousos, et al., CRH, Stress and Depression: An Etiological Approach (Las Vegas, NV: Conference on Cortisol and Anti-Cortisols, 1997)

7. Chrousos, G.P., The role of stress and the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis in the pathogenesis of the metabolic syndrome: neuro-endocrine and target tissue-related causes. International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders, 2000, 24, S50-55

8. Dallman, M.F., Pecoraro, N., Akana, S.F., La Fleur, S.E., Gomez, F., Houshyar, H., Bell, M.E., Bhatnagar, S., Laugero, K.D., & Manalo, S. Chronic stress and obesity: a new view of “comfort food”. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, (2003), 30, 11696-11701

9. Epel ES, McEwen B, Seeman T, Matthews K, Castellazzo G, Brownell KD, Bell J, Ickovics JR. Stress and body shape: stress-induced cortisol secretion is consistently greater among women with central fat. Psychosom Med. 2000 Sep-Oct; 62(5):623-32.

10. Fahey, et al., Hormonal Effects of Phosphatidylserine (PS) during two weeks of intense weight training (Orlando, Fl : ACSM Conference, 1998)

11. Fry, et al., Resistance exercise overtraining and overreaching. Neuroendocrine responses, Sports Med, 1997, 23 (2): 106-129.

12. Futterman, A.D., et al., Immunological and physiological changes associated with induced positive and negative mood, Phychosomatic medicine, 1994, 56(6): 499-511

13. Griffin J, Ojeda S. Textbook of endocrine physiology, 3rd ed. New York: Oxford University Press, 1996.

14. Hickson, et al., Glutamine prevents down regulation of myosin heavy chain synthesis and muscle atrophy from glucocorticoids, Am J Physiol, 1995, 268: E730-E734.

15. Hickson, et al., Glucocorticoid antagonism by exercise and androgenic-anabolic steroids, Med Sci Sports Exerc, 1990, 22: 331-340.

16. Kraemer, W.J., et al, Physiological adaptations to a weight-loss dietary regimen and exercise programs in women. Journal of Applied physiology, 83, 270-279.

17. Krsmanovic, L.Z., et al., Actions of Acetyl L canitine on the hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadal system in female rats. Journal of Steroid Biochemical Molecular Biology, 1992. 43(4): 351-358

18. Kelley, et al, energy restriction and immunocompetence in overweight women. Nutrition Research 18.2 (18): 159-169

19. Laitinen, J., Ek, E., & Sovio, U. Stress-related eating and drinking behavior and body mass index and predictors of this behavior. Preventive Medicine, 2002, 34, 29-39

20. Marsit, J.L, et al., Effects of ascorbic acid on serum cortisol and the Testosterone:Cortisol ratio in junior elite weightlifters, Journal of Strength And Conditioning Research, 1998, 12(3), 179-184

21. Martignoni, E., et al, Acetyl L carnitne acutely administered raises beta endorphin and cortisol plasma levels in humans. Clinical Neuropharmacology, 1988. 11 (5) p. 472-47

22. Monteleone, P., et al, Effects of phosphatidyl serine on the neuroendocrine response to physical stress in humans. Neuroendocrinology, 1990, 52:243-248,

23. Monteleone, P., et al, Blunting by chronic phosphatidyl serine administration of the stress-induced activation of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis in healthy men. European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, 42(4): 385-388, 1992

24. Ottosson, K Vikman-Adolfsson, S Enerback, A Elander, P Bjorntorp and S Eden, Growth hormone inhibits lipoprotein lipase activity in human adipose tissue, Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 2000, 80: 936-941,

25. Palermo, S., et al, The effect of L-acetyl carnitine on some reproductive functions in the oligoasthenospermic rat. Hormonal metabolism research, 1990. 22(12), 622 – 626

26. Peeke PM, Chrousos GP. Hypercortisolism and Obesity. Ann NY Acad Sci 1995, 771:665-76.

27. Rizza, et al., Cortisol-induced insulin resistance in man. Impaired suppression of glucose production and stimulation of glucose utilization due to a post receptor defect of insulin action, J Clin Endocrinol Metab, 1992, 54: 131-138.

28. Roberts, A.C. et al, Overtraining affects male reproductive status. Fertility and Sterility, 1993, 60(4):686-692

29. Rowbottom, et al., The emerging role of glutamine as an indicator of exercise stress and overtraining, Sports Med 21.2 1996: 80-97.

30. Roland Rosmond, Mary F. Dallman and Per Björntorp, Stress-Related Cortisol Secretion in Men: Relationships with Abdominal Obesity and Endocrine, Metabolic and Hemodynamic Abnormalities, The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, 1998, Vol. 83, No. 6 1853-1859

31. Simmons, et al., Increased proteolysis: an effect of increases in plasma cortisol within the physiological range, J Clin Invest, 1984, 73: 412-420.

Tom Venuto is an NSCA-certified personal trainer, certified strength coach, and author of the #1 e-book, “Burn the Fat, Feed The Muscle. Tom has written over 170 articles and been featured in IRONMAN, Natural Bodybuilding, Muscular Development, Exercise for Men and Men’s Exercise. For info on Tom’s e-book, visit: http://www.BurnTheFat.com . For Tom’s free monthly e-zine, visit Fitness Renaissance: www.fitren.com

How Yogic Postures Can Help You Attain Lifetime Fitness

May 5th, 2006

Sanjay Johari

The word “YOGA” is derived from Sanskrit, an ancient Indian language. The literal meaning of Yoga is addition, or joining or combining. The practice of Yoga involves a set of routines and carefully controlled lifestyle which help in realizing inner potential, attaining higher consciousness level and aligning or becoming one with the all pervading consciousness or energy level. While attempting to reach the goal, there is tremendous improvement in physical, mental and emotional health.

Yogic postures, called Yogasanas, form one component of Yogic practices. By themselves these postures can bring about awesome benefits in overall fitness. There are prescribed methods of doing these exercises. Basically one has to form the body in a particular posture, hold the body in that posture for sometime and then slowly come back to what we can call the posture of rest. These exercises are characterized by absence of jerks and slow body movements.

To understand these exercises better let us compare them with dynamic exercises with which we are more familiar, such as acrobatics, gymnastics, jogging etc. These exercises are effective on muscular, circulatory and respiratory systems. There are dynamic Yogic exercises (different from Yogic posture exercises) which also stimulate nervous and glandular system. All these exercises involve speed and dynamic body movements resulting in expenditure of energy and perspiration.

In Yogic posture exercises there is deep relaxation and energy conservation resulting in freshness. This is basically a nerve culture as it relaxes the nerves. The exercise starts from the posture of rest. First lie down in this posture, calm down your breathing, calm down your nerves and calm down your thoughts. Then form the posture you have in mind with slow body movement without jerk of any kind. Many postures are accompanied by prescribed breathing pattern. This posture is maintained for prescribed length of time which may be several seconds to few minutes. Then come back slowly to the posture of rest. After remaining in rest for 30 seconds to few minutes, the next posture exercise is done. This pattern is repeated for as long as you wish to do the exercise. Normally exercise for 30 minutes in a day is good enough for an average person.

Doing these exercises regularly gives remarkable benefits. Generally circulation of body fluids improves and metabolic activities become more efficient. Better blood circulation ensures more thorough distribution of oxygen in the body and more complete removal of toxins. Additionally each posture benefits particular set of organs and muscles. Depending upon the need and condition of health, tailor-made set of exercises can be designed.

Many people believe that life-force flows in our nerves. When the flow of life-force is unregulated and uncoordinated it provides conditions for development of body disorders or ailments from within the body. Yogic posture exercises work very well in this area and prevent ailments. The overall body vigor and freshness are maintained. There is a balance of metabolic activities and unnecessary growths in the body are avoided.

If you are looking for general well being, life free from diseases and lifetime fitness regular Yogic posture exercises can help you. Though these exercises can be combined with other work-outs, they can by themselves provide all the exercise you need for maintaining a good health.

Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle – A Preview

May 5th, 2006

My Review of the eBook

Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle
eBook by Tom Venuto

 

This blog was started for sharing information on natural ways of being healthy. Before launching this blog I looked around for products which would go well with theme of this blog. I analyzed dozens of products before finally deciding on Burn the Fat, Feed the Muscle. And I dare say I am extremely pleased with this choice.Here is my opinion about this ebook by Tom Venuto.

Before I tell you what you will find in this book let me tell you what you will not find here. You will not find quick-fix schemes for weight reduction or health improvement. You will not find “easy and convenient” solutions which promise you results without any efforts on your part. You will not find any magic formulas for immediate gratification. And there are no tall promises which cannot be fulfilled.

If you are looking for lasting solutions to your health problems for which you are prepared to make some commitments then you may be at the right place. If you are reading these lines then you may already be on your way to achieve lifetime fitness.

There are broadly two parts in this ebook – one is genuine and useful information on health related issues. The information provided are quite rare and backed by real life experience. This part alone is priceless in value.

The other part is step by step guide to help you achieve good health and lifetime fitness. This does require commitment on your part, and at the same time it assures permanent solutions to your health related problems.

Here is the link to the ebook :

http://www.sanjay-j.com/Recommends/Burnfat.html

Whatever your concerns about your health – weight reduction, body building or just improvement in fitness, you will find lasting solutions.

The remarkable part is that no drugs or supplements have been prescribed – they are simply not required. The steps suggested do not conflict with metabolic activities, in fact they improve metabolism. Although it may take some time to attain level of benefit you are looking for, many people have experienced improvement within a week.

Your age is no bar in adopting the practices suggested and getting benefit from them. It will not take too much time either from your daily chores. You will be able to find time to follow the routine if worked regularly.

http://www.sanjay-j.com/Recommends/Burnfat.html

To write such an authoritative ebook you need someone of the caliber of Tom Venuto. He has been personally involved with body building for 23 years, has been competing for 17 years and has been coaching and consulting for 18 years. His qualifications will amply satisfy you that you are in safe hands.

While I am writing these lines there are 5 bonuses available with the package. But even without these bonuses the main ebook is worth much more than the price fixed for it. It is simply a bargain considering you get priceless asset in form of lifetime fitness.

As if this was not enough, there is also 8 weeks’ unconditional money back guarantee. There is simply no way you could lose. And your gain could be enormous.

http://www.sanjay-j.com/Recommends/Burnfat.html

Enjoy your health
Sanjay Johari

High Fiber Food and Lifetime Fitness

May 5th, 2006

Sanjay Johari

Lifetime fitness is closely associated with lifetime commitment to follow good habits. There is nothing scary about these good habits, they are simple age-old rules that help to regulate your body properly. Following good eating habits is one of them.

The importance of a good digestive system cannot be over-emphasized in maintaining a good health. In normal circumstances our body is sufficiently capable of taking good care of our digestive system. The problem comes when we start abusing our own systems.

In our modern day lifestyle we take recourse to abusing our bodies in many ways. Some of these are – intake of patented health food and beverages, new diet which promise to restore and preserve youth and vitality and so on. In fact they may be doing more harm than good.

It is common knowledge that to maintain body weight at certain level you should keep a balance of quantity of calories coming in and quantity being used by body movement. A bar of chocolate will give about the same calories as five apples. But one bar of chocolate will hardly give the feeling of fullness which five apples can provide. To get about the same amount of fullness you can imagine how many chocolate bars will have to be consumed. The chocolate will not give fiber or roughage which is provided by apple. Fiber is necessary for good bowel movement and good digestion.

Sufficient roughage is present in foods such as wholewheat flour, unpolished rice, fruits, vegetables, pulses etc. People who are on high fiber diet are seldom obese. This is because intake of excess calories is avoided in high fiber diet. It gives a feeling of fullness so overeating is avoided. In addition it provides the nutrition which is naturally present in these foods.

If you wish to have lifetime fitness there is no way you can avoid high fiber diet. They say – take care of stomach and it will take care of your body. Eating high fiber diet is a part of good eating habits. And good eating habits are just one part of commitment you need to maintain for lifetime fitness.

There is plenty of wisdom in this age-old rule – have regular dose of fruits and vegetables. If you observe any aboriginal tribes which are closer to nature, you will invariably find high fiber food in their regular diet. We need to watch out as we go further and further away from our natural habits.

Here’s wishing you a lifetime fitness.

Sanjay Johari

Building A Better Body, One “Brick” At A Time

May 5th, 2006

This article by Tom Venuto sets the direction for lifetime fitness. Enjoy the article…..
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Building A Better Body, One “Brick” At A Time

By: Tom Venuto, NSCA-CPT, CSCS
Tue November 08, 2005
http://BurnTheFat.com

The quest to develop a stunningly fit, lean and attractive body is a long, slow journey. It’s not something you achieve overnight by popping a few pills or strapping an electric gizmo to your belly.

Which reminds me, did you know that by the time the FTC finally blew the whistle on the electronic ab belt scam, the makers of those “ab zappers” had swindled over $100 million dollars from unsuspecting consumers? Fortunately, some of those companies had to pay it back, and then some! The FTC charged three companies – Fast Abs, Ab Tronic and Ab Energizer – with false advertising and deceptive warranty practices for these “ABSurd” products.

But I digress& back to what I was saying about the journey to a better body…

Last week I looked out my window, and where there was once nothing but a dirt-filled empty lot, there stood a sprawling six story brick condo complex. If someone looked at this massive completed structure for the first time, they might not be impressed. However, since I observed the entire construction process unfold from my living room window, I was impressed – amazed even – at what goes into erecting this kind of structure.

I remember watching the crew humming around diligently every day like busy bees, laying one brick after another. From one day to the next, it didn’t seem like much changed. But slowly, over a period of a year and a half, I watched the building gradually morph into the finished product.

When you look at someone with an incredible body as a finished product, you often tend to dismiss the long journey and hard work it took to build that body. Unless you were side by side with that person in the gym (and in the kitchen), observing the work involved, it’s easy to attribute such a chiseled physique to genetics or give credit to a supplement (they just took product XYZ and voila – overnight abs). What you don’t see or appreciate are all the months and years of sweat and hard work.

Getting in shape is a lot like a construction project. First, there must be a picture in the mind. Then the vision goes onto paper as a blueprint. It takes months just to lay the foundation. More months of work will follow. On a daily basis, it doesn’t seem like much is happening. You look in the mirror and appear, for the most part, the same as you did yesterday. But sure enough, the small improvements are slowly accumulating like compounding interest in the bank. One day, you look in the mirror and “suddenly,” your blueprint has become reality.

The body of a fitness pro or bodybuilding champion is no more likely to be built overnight than a high rise is to be built overnight. It’s not physically possible. Accepting the idea that any type of pill, powder, drug, supplement or machine of any kind will make it happen sooner than nature intended is pure folly. You can’t force it.

Growth and development of any kind always requires a gestation period. For a baby, it’s nine months. For corn, I believe it’s about three months. If you were an expectant mother, would you want to hurry the process? Could any new development in nutrition or medical science speed up this wonderful miracle even one iota? If you were a farmer, would you try to harvest your crop before it was ripe? Would you dig up your seeds to see if anything was growing down there?

The answers are obvious. If only we would adopt the same patient, nurturing “mother’s” or “farmer’s mindset” towards getting in shape, then no one would waste their money on “fast abs” or “exercise in a bottle” or any such silliness ever again. We would understand that one must sow first, then reap the harvest, but that you can’t sow and reap in the same season.

If you ever get frustrated with your rate of progress (and who doesn’t), just remember; success is always guaranteed to the persistent. Nothing can stop someone who knows what they want and is willing to continue paying the price until they get it. It just takes time.

Become the architect and builder of your own dream body. You WILL build the body you want eventually if you’re patient enough and you refuse to quit. And set your goals HIGH! Create a fantastic blueprint. Michelangelo said,”The greatest danger is not that we set our goals too high and miss them, the greatest danger is that we set our goals too low and we reach them.” Envision a castle – a veritable Taj Mahal of a body! There’s nothing wrong with building castles in the sky, as long as you patiently work at putting the foundations underneath them. There are very few unrealistic goals; only goals with unrealistic deadlines.

So keep laying those “bricks” – every day – one at a time – and sure enough, eventually, you’ll build yourself a palace.

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Tom Venuto is a lifetime natural bodybuilder, an NSCA-certified personal trainer, certified strength & conditioning specialist (CSCS), and author of the #1 best selling diet e-book in Internet history, Burn The Fat, Feed The Muscle. Tom has written hundreds of articles and been featured in IRONMAN, Natural Bodybuilding, Muscular Development, Exercise for Men and Mens Exercise. For info on Tom’s e-book, visit www.BurnTheFat.com. To get Tom’s FREE Fitness Renaissance monthly newsletter, visit: www.fitren.com