Flour is one of those ingredients that just seems to be in everything, and yet we’re constantly warned not to eat too much of it. If you like baking, or eating cakes and cookies, you might be wondering why exactly it is that flour is so bad for you.
Well, we’re here to help, let us tell you exactly why you shouldn’t be eating too much of the powdery stuff.
As with everything else in your diet, flour comes down to nutritional value. As it happens, flour is pretty highly calorific, with a cup of flour giving you around 450 calories. It is pretty low fat, but the problem is that most of those calories are coming from carbohydrates.
Your body needs carbs, they act as fuel to give you energy. And if you’re burning all that fuel, it’s fine, no problem. But if you’re not burning the fuel, then it’s going to get turned into fat inside your body, which is basically why flour is bad for you.
Having some flour is fine, as long as you’re active and burning up those carbohydrates having a little flour is perfectly okay. It’s when you eat too much, or when you’re not active enough to use all the carbs, that’s when the problem begins.
Running can be an important and effective part of your fitness routine. And it’s perfectly normal that there are a few aches and pains associated with going out for your morning (or evening) jog. Warming up and stretching are good ways to protect your joints and muscles from injury, but what do you do when the pain is in your chest?
With winter well underway, many otherwise healthy runners are finding themselves with chest pain when running in the cold air. So what exactly is going on here?
Under normal circumstances your body warms air as you breath it in. The small blood vessels in your nose raise the temperature of the air entering your body so that it’s comfortable when the air hits your lungs.
However, when you’re running you probably have the tendency to breath more with your mouth than your nose, and to breath in short sharp breaths, rather than long slow ones. This means that your body doesn’t have the chance to warm the air up.
Veganism can seem like a scary thing, and it’s certainly a big step. Eliminating not only meat, but all animal derived products (including eggs and dairy) from your diet can be a difficult thing to do.
And yet, we carry a stereotype about vegans, either that they’ve made the ultimate sacrifice and are extremely healthy, or the very opposite, that they’re weak and unhealthy. Before considering veganism, you might want to look at a few of the myths and facts surrounding the dietary choice…
Vegans Don’t Get Protein
Okay, meat is an excellent source of protein, as are eggs and dairy products. The truth is though, that legumes (beans, lentils, soy etc.) are also packed with protein. The recommended amount of protein daily for men is fifty six grams, and forty six grams for women.
One cup of dried beans contains sixteen grams. You do the math. Vegans tend not to be lacking in protein, simply because they eat far more legumes than the average person…
Most people now realise that drinking soda is a bad decision. The 120 or so calories per can sized serving are “empty calories,” calories that simply add to your daily intake whilst offering no nutritional benefits in return.
If you’re trying to lose weight then you might have turned to diet soda, an easy fix for your soda addiction that gives very few calories. But what you might not know is that drinking diet soda isn’t really an easy fix, there are plenty of disadvantages to satisfying your sweet tooth in this way.
In fact, more and more dieticians are recommending that you cut out soda altogether, including diet sodas. But what can possibly be wrong with a simple, calorie free diet drink?
It Can Contribute to Osteoporosis…
Sodas contain plenty of phosphoric acid which is used as a flavouring agent. Phosphoric acid increases the acidity of your blood.
The consequence of this is that your body draws calcium out of your bones to try and compensate for this acidity, and losing calcium is a great way to get osteoporosis, or weakening of the bones. Women are at particular risk for this side effect as women suffer more from osteoporosis anyway.
We all like a treat every now and again, and for some of us our sin of choice is soda. No diet should cut out everything that you love, and as long as your treat is just now and again, it’s fine.
However, for some people soda is more than a treat, it’s a habit. If you’re looking to lose weight, then soda should absolutely be one of the things that you limit in your diet. Laden with calories and having little nutritional value, soda is full of what we call “empty calories.”
Fleshing out your daily calorie intake with soda isn’t a great idea because you’re getting nothing in return, no health benefits or nutrition. And if you’re problem area is your belly, then soda is an even worse choice.
There’s plenty of recent evidence that says that drinking soda adds to belly fat. But what’s so wrong with soda?
The Dangers of HFCS…
The problem with soda is not, as many people think, its sugar content, because very few sodas nowadays contain any sugar at all. Natural sugar has been replaced by high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), as it’s cheaper to manufacture and therefore adds to soda producers profits.
It’s common knowledge that eating at night harms your dieting plans. Or does it? New research shows that it might not be as bad as you think, given certain limitations. If you want to know the truth about night-time eating, read on…
Partially, the reason we eat so much at night is to do with our biology. Cave men hunted all day and ate at night, so we feel the need to do the same too. And given the practicalities of modern day life, it’s often easier for us to eat sparingly during the day, and eat a larger meal at night.
Add to that the fact that many of us train or go to the gym after work, then we end up eating larger amounts to make up for all the work we’ve just done.
Eating dinner relatively early, and then waiting for breakfast ends up giving us around a twelve hour gap between meals, which is not a good thing. That twelve hour starvation space ends up convincing your body to store more fat, because it’s worried about famine. Adding a snack into your night time schedule can be a good way of overcoming this natural instinct.
Fast food is generally just another way of saying unhealthy food. With most chains offering burgers that come in at a thousand calories or more, laden with saturated fats and sodium, fast food can not only eat up your entire day’s worth of calories in one meal, but can also be bad for your heart and your blood pressure.
Indisputably, fast food is bad for you. But what about when you have no choice? There may indeed be times when you are forced through circumstance to eat fast food, but the thing is that you do have a choice.
Most fast food chains have some healthy options, or options that are better than others. So if you do need to hit a fast food restaurant, try choosing some of these things, rather than the typical burger and fries…
KFC has a surprising number of healthy options. With mashed potatoes coming in at around 120 calories, original recipe drumsticks at 140, coleslaw at 190, potato salad at 180 and a Honey BBQ sandwich at just 300 calories, you can easily mix and match a low calorie healthy meal. Just avoid the fries and the full fat soda, and don’t go for anything extra crispy (that’s just another way of saying more trans fats…).
Energy drinks are ubiquitous nowadays; they’re available to buy pretty much everywhere, and most people don’t think twice about drinking them. But if you’re partial to a Red Bull or a Monster to help perk you up, there are a few things that you should now.
Energy drinks aren’t as safe as many people believe them to be, and there are a lot of hidden dangers to indulging yourself. Keep reading to find out why you might want to put that can of Red Bull back on the shelf…
Caffeine and Your Heart
Energy drinks contain huge amounts of caffeine, which is where the energy that they give you comes from. The average energy drink will contain more than twice the caffeine of a large coffee.
There are several health risks associated with drinking too much caffeine, but the main problem is the stress that it puts on your heart. Caffeine causes your heart to beat faster, which can put stress on it and cause palpitations. People at risk of heart problems or with high blood pressure should avoid drinking energy drinks altogether.
And even those of us with healthy hearts would do well to avoid drinking too many in too short a time, there is a link to heart attack and stroke risk associated with too much caffeine.
Comfort eating is the pitfall of many a dieter, and can seem like an endless cycle. Your mood causes you to eat junk food to try and feel better, and the junk food makes you put on weight, which in turn effects your mood and then you’re right back where you started from.
The solid key to dealing with comfort eating is to acknowledge that you’re doing it, and then to work on strategies to combat it. Whether you eat from stress, depression, loneliness or anger, try some of these tips to help you deal with your emotions without eating.
The only person that can analyse why you eat is you. You need to know which emotions and situations trigger your bad eating habits in order to go any further forward in this process. The classic way of doing this is by keeping a food and emotion journal.
Writing down what you eat and how you feel while you’re eating it will allow you to realise which emotions trigger your eating patterns. You will then be forewarned that when you’re feeling stressed, for example, you are liable to make bad food choices.
So, you just started your gym work out routine, and you’ve suddenly found that far from losing pounds, you’re actually gaining them? It can be a little demotivating to make such a tough decision, and then find that it’s seemingly not working at all, and in fact is doing the very opposite of what you intended.
But fear not, there are some very good reasons why you may put on weight when you first start exercising, and they are definitely not an excuse to stop going to the gym. It’s very common that first time gym goers put on weight, and it’s an effect that stops over time, so you just need to stick with it, and you’ll get the results that you’re looking for. In the mean time, here’s why it happens…
You’re Gaining Muscle
What they say is true, muscle weighs more than fat. Well, in a way it does, anyway. Muscle tissue takes up less space than fat, but is denser, therby giving the impression that you’re putting on weight whilst you’re actually just toning up.
A good way to test this is by measuring different areas of your body (stomach, hips, thighs, upper arms). Whilst the number on the scale may say that you’re putting on weight, the numbers on your tape measure will actually show that you’re getting slimmer. Over time this will diminish, but it can be a shock for beginners at the gym.