I am a personal trainer. So, I think hiring a trainer, especially this one, is a great idea. Seriously, hiring a trainer is an excellent step in reaching your fitness goals. However, I often find that people don’t really understand how personal training fits in to an overall fitness program. Continue reading
Many people nowadays are very much conscious about their own health and fitness. In addition to that, these people, and many others as well, are now having that desire to sculpt their bodies to achieve that magazine-cover look. As a result, gyms, health spas and other fitness centers have proliferated all over to cater to the needs of the fitness buffs and aficionados.
Even on television exercise machines, weight loss products, and other paraphernalia to improve fitness have more or less gained control over the airwaves and made their way into the households. But exercise is not the only way to build that body beautiful. It also entails certain amount of responsibility on the foods one chooses to eat. Being healthy and fit requires one to observe diet fitness.
Diet fitness is as essential as exercise itself. Diet for fitness provides the essential nutrition one needs to restore worn-out muscles and for healthy growth. Diet fitness should never be taken for granted. With the popularity of keeping fit, many different views, methods, programs and dieting strategies have been formulated by many professionals. Among these are high carb diets and high fat diets. Which one is more effective and which one should one choose to follow?
First thing to know would be the fundamental differences between these two diet approaches. As the name implies, high carb diets concentrates on taking in carbohydrate-rich foods while high fat diets endorses fat-rich foods. High carb diets are utilized to glycogen stored in the liver and muscles. Glycogen is a glucose complex that provides large amounts of energy ready for use in anaerobic exercises.
Fats, on the other hand, is well-known for being the richest source of calories. It actually contains 2.5 times more calories than carbohydrates and proteins alike. Studies also show that it takes the body 24 calories to metabolize carbohydrates while it only takes 3 to burn down fat. So which one to follow? A person can follow a high carb and low fat fitness diet or the other way around. It is absolutely not recommended to follow both at the same time; unless of course if you want to gain body fat.
But then diet fitness is not all about losing fat, one must also consider his diet in order to keep fat away. Research shows that sustainable loss of weight can only be achieved on a diet which suits the individual food preferences, lifestyle, medical profile and satiety signals.
Diet programs all over can help you shed off excess pounds, but only one diet can help you stay sexy, and it is the one that satisfies you most. Other important aspects of having a fit diet are moderation, balance and variation. One must be careful not to leave out important nutrients and other substances necessary for healthy body functioning. health organizations are clear about the amounts of nutrients an individual should have in the body.
Low fat high carbs, high carbs low fat; the question is not which diet program will work out but which is it that will work for you. Striving for a sexy and healthy body does not have to burden an individual, diet fitness does not have to mean sticking to the same kind of food for life. One may even try to be adventurous and try out new foods out there. Who knows? one may even discover spinach interesting.
Physical fitness is the state of the human body when it is in perfect health. Being fit is very important to stay alert both physically and mentally and also to ward off certain diseases that attack as the body ages. Fitness programs are schedules that allow a person to incorporate exercise into their daily routine. There may be many reasons for taking up a fitness program: to gain strength, to lose weight, to lose body fat, to fight certain disabilities, or just to become more fit. Continue reading
Ever wondered how the morning cup of coffee washes off all the lethargy of sleep and kick starts your brain to face a brand new day? Does credit for coffee’s legendary refreshing effect go to the diminutive but obvious presence of caffeine? Can we reduce the virtues of such a great beverage to a mere work of a chemical? Clearly, the flavor, smell and arrogant upshot of caffeine all contribute towards making coffee a complete experience, rather than just a beverage.
Coffee is basically prepared from the roasted seeds of the coffee plant. The coffee beans – as the seeds are referred to – are roasted and powdered. The processing of coffee beans is a very labor intensive process. The roasting phase of processing considerably influences the final taste and odor of coffee and is thus the most significant part of the whole process. Roasting causes extremely complex chemical action that metamorphoses the insipid taste of the coffee seed to the great taste we all know and love. In some cases the coffee beans are even aged for a considerable period of time before they are roasted.
The range and variety of the experience we call coffee is considerably huge. For the stringent coffee buff that prefers an experience devoid of caffeine, decaffeinated coffee hits the mark. There are the darker roast styles that justify the word ‘black coffee’. There are even special flavored coffees in the market for people who need a twist in the tale. There is no end to the ways you can get your cup of coffee.
But, coffee is more than just a hot liquid in a cup. Its significance and influence extend in all aspects of society and culture. The coffee houses of the 16th century started off a trend of using coffee as an excuse and means of getting people to socialize. Coffee is the greatest social lubricant ever invented, capable of bringing people together to mingle, talk, debate and decide. The coffee houses of India became the axis and base camp of the workers struggle where people and propaganda celebrated the birth of a new political age. In Sweden and the Nordic countries, coffee is an important cornerstone of their culture.
In the past, coffee had a religious and spiritual significance. This appears quite natural given the experience of coffee is nothing short of divine. The early Arabs created wine from the coffee fruit which was used during religious ceremonies. In many cultures coffee naturally substituted wine when wine was prohibited.
The experienced connoisseurs of coffee indulge in coffee cupping. Coffee cupping is simply a great excuse to turn your love for coffee into a professional pursuit with all the semblances of any grave enterprise. Some professional coffee tasters are so proficient in drinking coffee they can identify the geographical origin of coffee from its taste.
Coffee is a great accompaniment for any informal meal, typically as an integral component of breakfast. In relatively more formal settings, like for instance, in a restaurant, coffee fits in perfectly during the dessert course. It’s obvious that coffee is a great accompaniment to anything from pastries, cookies, shortbread to muffins. But, if the coffee lovers of the world are to be taken seriously, coffee goes with any occasion or time no matter what.
Sometimes we all probably feel like we are walking through a nutrition mine field. What one person or organization calls healthy is deemed unhealthy or even deadly by another. So what is a person to do when faced with the idea of trying to improve food choices in order to achieve a healthy fit body?
Luckily there are a few things that we are absolutely certain of and these things are the focus of this article. There are a lot of everyday, common foods and food storage items that most people don’t give a second thought, but that in actuality could seriously affect their overall health and quality of life.
This first unhealthy substance isn’t actually a food, but it is something we commonly store foods in. Even health food stores sometimes place their “healthy” food in containers made of this cancer-linked substance. In June 2011, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a report saying that styrene has a high probability of causing cancer. Now, given the fact that I’ve been in the fitness industry for quite some time, this is not news to me, but perhaps it is to you. Styrene is everywhere and it’s a challenge to avoid it. Here are some very common products containing this potentially cancer-causing substance.
- Styrofoam cups and plates
- To-go boxes from restaurants
- Foam packing material
- Industrial emissions
- Second-hand cigarette smoke
- Floor waxes
- Paints and varnishes
Fortunately for us wisdom is power in this case. There are very simple alternatives to styrene these days and glass food and liquid containers are your best bet for ensuring the things you put in your body are not contaminated with unwanted and in some cases, deadly ingredients.
A second potentially harmful issue surrounds farm raised salmon (tilapia also). When we think of salmon we think of a beautiful vibrant fish leaping over small water falls in order to spawn, you know, just like we see on the Discovery Channel. Well, this isn’t the reality for farm raised salmon. Instead envision tiny ponds densely packed with fish that have never felt a day of freedom. If this doesn’t make you feel uneasy, the rest of the story will. Farm raised salmon are malnourished due to the fact that they are fed cheap sources of food in order to keep costs at a minimum.
Feathers are a staple in the farm raised salmon’s diet because it’s a cheap source of protein. Because they are so poorly fed, their skin is a drab shade of gray. Since this wouldn’t sell very well, these farm raised salmon are injected with the colorant Canthaxanthin in order to produce that healthy-looking pink color. Farmed salmon contain much higher levels of Poly-Chlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs) and dioxins that do their wild-caught cousins. Research has shown that even a small amount of these compounds may cause irreparable brain development damage in children. Moreover, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) has announced that ingesting more than a single serving of farm-raised salmon in a given week may cause a person to exceed the maximum intake level for these substances according to the World Health Organization. So many people eat salmon in an effort to be healthy and get those essential fatty acids found in this fish’s oil. Unfortunately they are being deceived because not only do these fishes have lower quality oils than their wild-caught cousins, but they also have tissues (meat) fed with potentially harmful substances.
Lately, I’ve been getting a lot of emails asking me questions about PH and conception. Specific concerns are things like: how do alkaline foods affect baby gender and sex; whether you’ll get a boy or a girl if you consume an alkaline diet, and which foods have a low PH and would therefore fit this criteria. I’ll address these questions in the following article and tell you some other things to consider if you’re trying to determine or influence your baby’s gender.
PH And How It Influences Your Future Baby’s Gender: There are actually three things that come in to play here – the timing of your conception, the sexual positions that you use when you try to conceive, and the PH that you have when this conception occurs. In terms of PH, an alkaline reading on the mother to be would make the chances of conceiving a boy greater, while an acidic reading would increases the chances of a girl. Here’s why.
The sperm that will give you a son are pretty short lived. They can only live for a day or so. The opposite is true for the sperm that produces a daughter – it can live for several days. But, if you want a daughter, you want to weed out the Y (boy sperm) and if you want a son, you’ll want to weed out the X (girl sperm.)
Your PH comes into play because you can manipulate it so that your vagina is unfriendly to the sperm holding the chromosome of the gender that you don’t want. As stated earlier, if you’re going for an alkaline environment, you’re setting yourself up for a boy conception because this state is more friendly to the players in this game. If you’re going for an acidic environment, you’re setting yourself up for a girl conception because the Y’s will just wither and weaken when your PH is too high.
What Foods Are Alkaline: So hopefully, if you’re found this article, you want a boy and are on board with an alkaline diet. Most foods that are alkaline fall into the fruit and vegetable category and avoid meats and dairy. There are some exceptions of course, but more common examples are things like celery, lettuce, asparagus, lemon, watermelon, grapefruit, green tea, almonds, and sunflower seeds. You want to avoid milk, breads and pastas, most meats, and sugars / convenience foods.
I realize that this list may not seem too appealing. But, you only have to do this for as long as it takes to get a PH tester strip to get you the low reading that you need. Once you get this, you’ll only need to maintain what you’ve done and continue to use the test strips to ensure that you aren’t sneaking back up.
Douching Can Alkalize Too: If this diet seems not so fun, know that you can also use douches to help this process along. In fact, douching with solutions based on your reading and your time frame can yield much more dramatic results. Again, you’re not in this indefinitely, just until the little strip reaches that magic number (and stays there.)
Moving On: OK, we’ve covered food and douching, so now let’s think about timing. If you want a boy, you want to get active on the day of ovulation. For a girl, you want to get active much earlier – three to four days prior to the egg’s release. And, you want deeper penetration for a boy conception and the opposite if you want a daughter.
I’ve put together a few websites that take a lot of the guess work out of choosing your baby’s gender. You’ll find step by step instructions, resources for douche recipes and food PH lists, information on when to conceive, tips, support, and examples of ovulation predictors / PH testing strips.
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Golf fitness exercises can be beneficial for the woman golfer in terms of improving the foundation of the swing, rotation in the backswing, speed development in the downswing, and a consistent finish position. Learn how golf fitness exercises can benefit the woman golfer. Lowering scores and making the game more enjoyable. Continue reading
The history of coffee has a rich and fascinating tradition, resulting in gourmet coffee available to you in your kitchen or at your favorite coffee house.
Coffee dates back to the 9th century. Today, a good cup of coffee ties our world together in ways that are truly amazing through the years.
The Origin of Coffee
No one knows how coffee was discovered. One popular legend says coffee was discovered by an Arabian shepherd named Kaldi who found his goats prancing around a shrub bearing bright red fruit. He tasted the fruit and experienced the same energy.
Kaldi shared his discovery with the local monks, and they used the fruit to stay awake during long hours of prayer. The “mysterious red fruit” spread to monasteries all over the world, starting the relationship between the church and coffee that has lasted for centuries.
Coffee is mentioned in writings as early as the 10th century, and historians since then have followed coffee’s history and use throughout the world.
In 1471, not long before Columbus left to discover America, the first coffee house opened in Constantinople. The merchant trade of Venice brought coffee to Italy, where the first European coffee shop opened in 1645. Coffee houses spread throughout Europe and England and later to America. By 1675, there were over 3,000 coffee houses in England, demonstrating coffee’s tremendous appeal so many years ago.
As coffee production started around the world in different tropical regions, the growing conditions produced new and distinctive flavors. Various cultures invented new ways of enjoying coffee, and starting new traditions.
Coffee Making Through the Years
How we roast, grind and brew coffee has changed tremendously over the years. At first, coffee was boiled after being crushed by a mortar and pestle, as it still done with Turkish coffee.
Drip brewing started around 1800 in France, about the same time as percolators were invented also. Vacuum coffee makers were invented in 1840 to brew coffee that was clear and without sediment. By the end of the 19th century, espresso machines were developed for brewing coffee through the pressure method. Paper filters were invented by Melitta Benz in 1908. She and her husband patented them and started the Melitta family coffee business, which their grandchildren continue to this day.
Drip coffee makers for home use in the United States became popular after the Mr. Coffee coffee maker was introduced in 1972. Prior to that time, most coffee at home was made with a percolator, either electric or on the stove top.
The rise of the corner gourmet coffee house in America is an even more recent event. Founded in 1971, Starbucks popularized dark, gourmet coffee and expanded on a massive scale in the 1990’s. Now there are 16,000 stores worldwide, including 11,000 in the United States and 1,000 in Canada. This rise in gourmet coffee houses has brought a new coffee lifestyle to American society, greatly increasing expectations for coffee quality.
Growing Coffee Around the World
From coffee’s start in the Arabian peninsula, coffee has become one of the largest commercial crops grown around the world. Coffees are grown in tropical and subtropical areas, including some of the most impoverished areas of the world. The traditional coffee production areas in are in South America (with Brazil and Columbia as the two largest coffee producers in the world), Africa (primarily East Africa) and Indonesia. Other areas grow coffees that have become prized, including Jamaica, Hawaii, Australia, India, and Costa Rica, winning the hearts of coffee aficionados worldwide.
Gourmet Coffee Today
In general, the coffee beans from from Central and South America are known for their mild yet potent flavor. East African and Arabian coffee beans are known for their intense flavor and bright acidity. Indonesian coffee beans produce smooth, rich and low acid flavors.
Coffee has brought amazing changes to our society and our world in the past 1,100 years. Coffee continues to span the globe, connecting us with people far away. The coffee in your cup came from beans grown in an exotic location far away and transported around the world to you.
What will be next for coffee? Who knows, so enjoy your cup of gourmet coffee and the rich tradition that goes with it!
A barista is an interesting profession very suitable for socially-minded people who like to talk, meet people, listen to stories and enjoy the memories of special “coffee moments.” One of these special memories is the story of a cup of Kopi Luwak coffee that a coffee patron shared with a barista friend.
The coffee patron was very specific in his order of genuine gourmet Sumatra Mandheling coffee. He sighed at the absence of Kopi Luwak on the coffee menu. Kopi Luwak is among the most expensive coffees in the world. For this reason, it is not something a coffee shop would feature for regular consumption.
However, the coffee patron said to the barista, “…you realize how delicious coffee really is when you taste a cup of genuine Kopi Luwak coffee as I did during my travels in Sumatra. It is a paradox to learn that a Paradoxurus or “Luwak,” basically a little mammal that goes unnoticed and is not very beautiful, produces “animal coffee” for which humans pay hundreds of dollars per pound! Sumatran locals call the little mammals “Luwak.” Paradoxurus is their scientific name more fitting for the high priced coffee droppings collected to make this marvelous coffee. These animals live in the trees in Sumatra. One of their favorite foods is red, ripe coffee cherries. Interestingly, they eat the cherries, bean, everything. Once the coffee cherries get to their stomach, the animal’s body produces enzymes and gastric juices that process the beans.
A scientist from the University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada, Doctor Massimo Marcone, ran scientific tests on Kopi Luwak coffee. This scientist proved that proteolytic enzymes penetrated into all the “Luwak” beans. This is what causes substantial breakdown of storage proteins and reduces the caffeine level in this special coffee. Apparently, these animal enzymes prevent bitter taste and caffeine jitters. The “Luwak’s” stomach is almost like a natural “coffee mill.” When the beans exit through the animal’s digestive system, the beans are still intact.
The animals move primarily at night. They creep along the branches of coffee trees. The animals sniff the coffee cherries and pick only the reddest and tastiest ones. They chew the exterior of the cherry but swallow the whole beans. Amazing to think there are Kopi Luwak farmers who follow these creatures through the Sumatran forests. The beans stay in the animals’ stomachs for about 36 hours before they come out. The farmers are familiar with the “Luwak” territory so they scour the grounds for animal droppings to collect. The farmers clean the beans thoroughly. Then they can roast the beans and grind them just like any other coffee. Funny to think that the origin designation for this coffee is “Kopi Luwak.” The price tag is a high one but worth every sip!…”
The barista nodded and the coffee patron continued. “…Aah! Kopi Luwak coffee: rich and strong aroma. Full bodied like no other coffee, almost “syrupy” and with a hint of chocolate taste. It is coffee that lingers on the tongue with hints of malt coffee. A shame the production is so low, only about 500 pounds per year. But you know, it is not the only fruit digested by an animal, excreted and then collected for human consumption as a pricey drink. There are others….”
The barista said, “Really, did not know that.” The coffee patron replied, while taking his last sip of Mandheling gourmet coffee, “…In Brazil, they have Jacu Bird Coffee. In Vietnam, the weasel is what produces Weasel Coffee. I find “Luwaks” prettier than weasels, don’t you? In the Philippines, the ‘civet” (a “Luwak” by another name) produces Kape Alamid Coffee. I could go on and tell you about the Argan oil story, a tale of nuts and tree climbing goats from Morocco. But, it is late and I need to go. By the way, the Sumatra Mandheling coffee was great!…”
Yes, genuine gourmet Mandheling Coffee tastes great and it is available for the asking. Go ahead; treat yourself to a cup of this delicious specialty coffee!