Fitness & Wellness

Eating Healthy Doesn't Have To Suck

Eating Healthy Doesn’t Have To Suck

A lot of people avoid eating healthy, because they have a distorted image of exactly what that means. They think it means crunching on carrots, celery and lettuce all day and giving up all other types of delicious food. The thing that surprises them is that healthy food actually tastes good. In fact, once you develop the habit of eating healthy, the food at a fast food place doesn’t taste good. You also notice how you feel worse after you eat it.

Mother Nature provides all the ingredients to create a gourmet delight.

Too many Americans have a diet of processed food and haven’t eaten healthy for quite a while. Eating healthy starts with ingredients that are closest to their natural form. They have no chemicals or preservatives and still contain fiber, protein and healthy fat. Spicing everyday dishes with fresh herbs is one way to make any dish special and avoid bland eating. You can also use fresh veggies and spiralize them into vegetable noodles or try some amazing vegetable squash. Toss lean protein options like chicken in herbs and spices or marinate it, then air fry it. It’s super quick and delicious.

Have some fresh salad every meal.

Salad fills you up and not out, plus provides loads of nutrients. When people think of salads, too often they think of the fast food variety that has a handful of iceberg lettuce, a cherry tomato and some grated carrot. That’s just plum boring. Why not make it more exciting? Toss in some herbs, like cilantro or basil. Experiment with a variety of lettuce like oak leaf lettuce that has a nutty flavor. Toss in some nuts and berries and other types of veggies, including sweet onion. Create your own dressing and experiment with flavors until you find one you love. You can even top with Parmesan cheese or feta.

There should be a life beyond burgers and fries.

If you’re existing on burgers and fries, with a bacon burger or two for variety, you’re missing some of the best protein sources available that taste delicious, too. Wild salmon, for instance has amazing flavor and is loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, something too low in the diet of most Americans. Use those fresh herbs to add flavor. Is your budget tight? Not a problem. Have a meatless Monday with red beans and rice. It’s an inexpensive form of protein. You can even add quinoa to your favorite salad as a protein source, to make it a complete meal.

  • Eating healthy can take planning. It’s simply too easy to stop for a carry out dinner. Plan your meals for the week one day, shop another and cook for the whole week over the weekend. Reheating takes less time than sitting in a drive through line and even saves money.
  • Look for the healthiest options. If you include dairy, like butter, choose butter that came from grass-fed cows. It contains more conjugated linoleic acid, which is heart healthy. The same is true of beef.
  • Eating healthy on a budget can be even cheaper if nothing goes to waste. If you have left over meat or vegetables, there’s nothing better than a bowl of soup from the leftovers that might have gone to waste.
  • If you’re interested in trying spaghetti squash, there are a number of ways to cook it. All involve cutting and removing the seeds and it’s hard. Poke holes with a knife several places along the line you’ll cut, then microwave for 5 or 6 minutes then cut on the dotted line.

For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health and Fitness

Get Your Body Summer Ready

Get Your Body Summer Ready

It’s pretty hot outside and you might think it’s too late to get your body summer ready in Winter Haven, FL, but it’s never too late. In fact, after just a month of exercise, you’ll notice a difference. There’s still three months of summer and summery warm weather in September and October, where you can show off your new body in more revealing warm weather clothing. You’ll look fabulous in a swimsuit and even better for the year end holidays.

Decide what your goal is.

You have to know what you want to accomplish, before you can accomplish it. Do you want to tone your body? Lose weight? Build energy or do all three? Identify your goal and make it specific. Instead of just saying I want to lose weight, focus on how many pounds you want to lose or how many inches you want to lose if toning your body is key. Your goal must be measurable. For instance, measuring energy could include how many flights of steps you can climb without getting winded. A personal trainer can help you develop your goal and track your steps toward achieving it.

Exercise is important, but a great body starts in the kitchen.

You can’t out-exercise a bad diet, but you don’t have to starve yourself to get fit. Eating healthy is all about making smarter choices in food. If you have healthy snacks available, you won’t be as likely to buy a candy bar at the gas station or eat everything in sight when you get home from work. Most people love the new way of healthy eating and find the food is delicious and filling. If you’re eating healthy, not dieting, you won’t feel deprived and can even occasionally have some of your favorite foods, keeping portion control in mind.

Make an appointment for a healthy body and keep it.

Make exercise a habit by working out the same time every day. Make it an appointment that you’ll keep, like a doctor’s appointment. If a friend asked you to go to lunch when you had a doctor’s appointment, you’d probably say no because of the appointment. Do the same with your time for exercise. In fact, you might consider it an appointment that helps prevent a lot of doctor’s appointments.

  • When you write down your goals, you can find ways to keep them. For instance, meal planning is a big help. You plan a week’s meals at once, create a grocery list and shop all at once. Then make the entire week’s meals on the weekend so you only have to warm or assemble them during the week.
  • Working out with a friend can make it more fun and can actually be motivation to go to the gym. At Habitat Health and Fitness, we offer lower cost group programs that are perfect to join.
  • As you get fitter, you can start adding fun, yet active, things to your schedule. They can include everything from hiking, swimming, bicycling and even dancing the night away.
  • Based on your goal, find a way to track your progress. While most people use weight, you can use inches, clothing sizes and even health indicators like blood sugar levels or blood pressure.

For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health and Fitness

Think Healthy Thoughts

Think Healthy Thoughts

Your attitude and thoughts make a difference in whether you’ll be healthy, happy or even successful. That’s why we encourage you to think healthy thoughts at Habitat Health and Fitness in Lakeland, Florida. Getting fit is all about eating healthy and exercising regularly. If you hate exercise or worry that you might injure yourself, despite a doctor’s okay, you probably won’t get the results you want, making it easier to quit entirely.

Healthy thoughts include appreciating what you have and how much you’ve achieved.

If you’re constantly looking as the glass half empty and have a losing attitude, getting fit and healthy will be harder. Instead, focus on all the progress you made and look for improvements in your fitness, like being able to climb a full set of stairs without getting winded or noting your blood pressure dropped several points. Never compare yourself with other people, just focus on how far you came. Quit focusing on any past failures and look to future improvements.

You can make yourself sick with unhealthy thoughts.

Unhealthy thoughts can bring stress, which actually negatively affect your body. Stress keeps your body in a constant fight or flight mode, disturbing your digestive system and even altering your heart rate and blood pressure. Stress is the reason many people develop serious conditions after losing a spouse, a job or after being in stressful situations for a long time. You can control that stress by focusing on the positive and with exercise. Exercise helps reverse the changes caused by the fight or flight response to prevent serious problems it can cause.

Your attitude and thoughts affect your eating habits.

There are people who are emotional eaters, either looking to food for comfort, to disperse anger or calm themselves, stuffing their emotions down with food. Identifying the emotional turmoil finding a new way to deal can make a difference. Your attitude toward healthy food also makes a difference in whether you’ll stick with a program. Focus on food that you enjoy and find ways to make it healthier. Eating foods high in nutrients that increase brain chemicals, like serotonin, which help calm you is also important. Those include nuts, seeds, fish, fruits and vegetables. The better you feed your body, the healthier your mind and thoughts will be.

  • Healthy thoughts aid you in caring for yourself. Self-care includes noticing when you need to rest and getting adequate sleep, eating healthy meals, taking time to relax and enjoy life, plus exercise.
  • Find something you love about your workout. Maybe it’s noticing how much more control you have over your body or how great you feel when you’re done. Focus on that during workouts, rather than something negative.
  • Workout with a friend or life partner. It’s more fun to workout together. It can be a date night followed by a healthy dinner at a restaurant or one you two make together. It also makes you look forward to a healthy lifestyle.
  • Drink more water. Most people fail to drink enough water and that can leave them feeling exhausted or achy. Take up a challenge to drink water throughout the day. Try to drink an ounce of water for every pound you weigh. If you don’t like plain water, make infused water.

For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health and Fitness

Is A Healthy Diet That Important?

Is A Healthy Diet That Important?

How important is a healthy diet? There are two phrases used in the fitness industry that describe just how important it is. The first is, “You can’t out-exercise a bad diet.” You need to eat healthy to get the results you want. The second focuses on the importance of diet in your appearance. That phrase is, “A great body starts in the kitchen.” If you put junk into your body, you’ll end up with junk.

It’s not about dieting but making smarter choices when you eat.

When you diet, you have a strict list of foods you can eat and those you can’t. Diets often dictate the food at each meal. Eating healthy isn’t like that. It’s more about making smarter choices. If you’re hungry for a snack, it’s smarter to choose a handful of nuts or an apple, rather than a candy bar. Topping a baked potato with Greek yogurt is healthier and lower in calories than topping it with sour cream, so it’s a smarter move. Small changes like these make a big difference, but you’ll get the most benefit from making big changes, like cutting out food with added sugar and eliminating highly processed food.

It sometimes takes time to make changes.

Cutting out food with added sugar is one of the hardest things to do, but it’s also one of the best things you can do for your body. Sugar adds to the potential for a lot of serious conditions, which include high blood pressure, diabetes and heart disease. It’s really hard to give it up, since it’s highly addictive. The more you eat, the more sugar you want. It even alters your sense of taste so things don’t taste as sweet. That’s why once you give up food with added sugar, you’ll notice how truly sweet fruit tastes.

You can’t out-exercise a bad diet can also refer to calories.

It’s far easier to skip eating fries and a soft drink that exercising the extra hours to burn off the calories. Do you exercise longer or just skip the sugar laden soft drink and fries? The answer should be simple for most people, skip the soft drink and fries. Compare the number of calories to healthier options. The number of calories in just an order of large fries is the same as it is in 120 asparagus spears or 240 string beans. It would be tough to eat that much in one setting

  • Healthy eating includes what you drink. Soft drinks with sugar contain about 100 calories and those that contain artificial sweeteners may be low in calories, but studies show they may increase belly fat.
  • A healthy lifestyle should also include a good night’s sleep. Too little sleep increases the amount of hunger hormones and suppresses the hormones that make you feel full.
  • A healthy diet includes adequate protein, which is the building block material for muscle tissue. It also should include healthy fat, since you need healthy fat to help burn body fat.
  • No matter what your fitness goals, you need a healthy diet to achieve it. You need it to boost your energy when you exercise, help you lose weight and provide the materials to build strong muscles.

For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health and Fitness

Best Stretches To Do Before A Workout

Best Stretches To Do Before A Workout

If you workout at Habitat Health and Fitness in Lakeland, FL, you already know that we create a program that include stretches to do before a workout. The warm up stretches don’t require a lot of effort, but they get the blood circulating to the muscles to prepare for the extra effort required during the workout, get your heart ready for the workout and increase the temperature of the body to make the muscles looser. The stretches use the same muscles you’ll be working during your actual workout.

Just move your body but make those movements gentle.

Riding a stationary bike is one way to warm up. It as simple as hopping on the bike and pedaling a few minutes. Start slow and build from there. If you’re working your upper body, get those muscles loose with arm circles. To arm circles, stand with your feet at shoulder-width, stretch your arms out parallel to the floor at shoulder height. Now, make small circles with your arms and start extending those circles into larger circles, then reverse the direction of your arms and repeat.

Start the warm up with walking.

You can pace for a short time, then move into a lunge, eventually moving to a lunge twist. Shake your hands as you pace. It’s all about getting the blood circulating, without overdoing. As you pace, step out with the right leg and lunge forward. Make sure you keep your knee is directly above the ankle on the right leg as its final position.

The best stretches mimic the movements you’ll use during the workout.

If you’re going to take a brisk walk, run or doing lower body exercises, try a leg pendulum. Stand on one foot, lifting the other leg and swinging it back and forth like a pendulum. Other lower body stretches include quad stretches. It starts with a few seconds of jogging, then stopping, lifting one leg behind you, grabbing that foot and pulling it toward you to stretch for a few seconds. It’s important to take it easy and slowly stretch it to you. Jog again for a second or two and do the other side.

  • Twisting your body from side to side sounds simple enough, but it’s an important warm up stretch for the core muscles. Feet are apart with arms stretched out, parallel to the floor, then you twist your body from side to side.
  • Dynamic stretches include jumping jacks. You can start out slowly and just lift the arms up and back down, then add the jump, widening your legs as you lift your arms. As you warm up, increase your speed.
  • A butt kick uses the heel of your foot to kick your bottom. It loosens legs but will do the most for your core and quads. Lift one leg as you bend it at the knee and lift it behind you to use your heel to kick your bottom. Do quickly and alternate legs.
  • A modified form of the lunge is the lateral lung. Instead of stepping forward, like the traditional lung, you step to the side as wide as you can and remain stable as you bend that knee and lunging to that side as you do. Push back up and lunge to the other side. One set is a lunge on each side.

For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health and Fitness

Pros And Cons Of A Workout Partner

Pros And Cons Of A Workout Partner

You may have read about all the benefits of having a workout partner but are still unclear whether it’s the right move for you. While there are a lot of good reasons to have one, it’s not for everyone. There are some reasons not to have one. Here are the pros and cons of a workout partner so you can decide whether having one is right for you.

You’ll be more accountable if you have a workout partner.

You’ll be more apt to make it to the gym if you have a workout partner. Just knowing you’ll be meeting with them is one reason to go to the gym. On those days you go but aren’t motivated to work your hardest, a workout partner can push you to work a little harder. One study found that people who were called just once every two weeks to find out how they were progressing tended to stick with their exercise program. In fact, the study showed they were 78% more likely to exercise.

Keeping up with the Jones can be a good thing.

Everyone wants to look their best when they know someone is watching. If your workout partner pushes hard, you’ll tend to push out harder. It’s human nature to do that and compete. That can also include working out longer and not cutting out early and skip the last few exercises. Workout partners can push you to try something new, that you might not try if you’re by yourself. They can also share knowledge about form or types of workouts that you may not know.

Some workout buddies are far less dependable than you.

You have to know whether your workout buddy will show ahead of time. If they’re not reliable, you have to be able to cut the ties. The same is true if you’re seeing it actually slows your training and has become more social than physical. That can be pretty tough to do, so set ground rules before you start or face the possibility of ending a friendship. If you both have the same goals, same special needs and fitness level, it’s easier, but if you don’t, one will be holding the other back. Always have a back-up plan in case your workout partner bails.

  • You can get all the benefits of having a workout buddy, with none of the drawbacks if you workout with a personal trainer. You’ll actually get faster results, since the trainer provides the best program to achieve your goals.
  • A workout partner can be perfect if you’re lifting. He or she is a natural as your spotter. For runners, partners are also a safety benefit, especially if you’re running when it’s dark, like early in the morning. It’s a second person that can call for help if something happens.
  • A workout partner can help take the boredom out of the workout and make you look forward to it. If you enjoy it, you’ll be more apt to stick with the program.
  • Workout partners can provide motivation with praise when you accomplish a task and provide more beyond just exercise. They can be an asset when it comes to healthy eating, even sharing recipes.

For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health and Fitness

How Processed Foods Affect Your Health

How Processed Foods Affect Your Health

Not all processed foods are bad. Some of it is healthy. The actual food and how it’s processed makes a difference in how it will affect your health. For instance, frozen vegetables are processed. They’re washed, which is a way of processing. They normally are frozen close to the field, so there’s no transportation. That means they can fully ripen and immediately washed and frozen they’re frozen. If they’re vegetables, they are also blanched before freezing. The process of freezing them quickly after they ripen means they probably have more nutrients than fresh fruits and vegetables on the store shelf.

Highly processed foods are totally different.

If you read labels, you probably notice some words that look straight out of a chemistry lab or tons of different types of sugar. Food with added sugar isn’t healthy, especially the type with HFCS—high fructose corn syrup. HFCS is artificially created and chemically different than natural sugar. It metabolizes differently than the glucose of regular sugar. Glucose is metabolized by every cell, but fructose is only metabolized in the liver. In animal studies, lab animals fed high amounts of fructose developed fatty liver disease and cirrhosis. It may contribute to hypertension, cause damage to the brain and cause weight gain, since it’s in just about all highly processed foods.

There are negatives and positives to processing.

Cooking some foods make them healthier, but there are advantages to raw fruits and vegetables. If you cook tomatoes, it destroys the vitamin C, but it also enhances the lycopene, a powerful antioxidant. If you process wheat or grain by milling, you remove the bran and germ, leaving just the endosperm. The bran has fiber and the germ is rich in nutrients, like vitamins, healthy fat and protein. All that’s left is the endosperm, which is starch. That endosperm is bleached for flour, so you get an absence of nutrients and chemicals with white flour. That type of processing makes it unhealthy. Focus on whole grains.

Processed food contains chemicals and is often low in nutrition.

Many of the snack foods don’t spoil easily, since they’re filled with preservatives that keep them fresh. There’s a joke about Twinkies lasting for centuries and still tasting fresh. Of the 37 ingredients, there are five you can identify as regular food. Those are salt, water, sugar, flour and egg. It has mostly chemicals and man-made ingredients, including trans fats. Highly processed meats, like canned meat, hot dogs, cured ham and bacon are another area where additives and nitrates that affect your health are found.

  • Read labels. If you’re buying peanut butter, there should be one ingredient, peanuts, not several, which includes sugar. Canned goods can be healthy, but again, read the label for additives and sugar.
  • Highly processed food and ultra-processed food, like snacks, often have chemical changes to extend the shelf life. What they don’t have is fiber and nutrients. Fiber helps you feel fuller and keeps your blood glucose level.
  • Processed foods sometimes aren’t really food, but soft drinks and juices. They add calories without the fiber to make you feel full. Even diet soft drinks have shown to increase your belly fat.
  • Some processed food goes through chemical changes, making them something completely different than their original form. These chemical changes make it difficult for the body to digest the food and can cause harm.

For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health & Fitness

Is The Paleo Diet Legit?

Is The Paleo Diet Legit?

You may have heard a lot about the Paleo diet. It’s one of the latest crazes, which doesn’t necessarily mean it’s unhealthy. It simply means it’s popular. While we work on fitness at Habitat Health and Fitness in Lakeland, FL, we also emphasize that you have to eat healthy if you want results. You can’t workout at the gym and then eat a whole cake topped with a quart of ice cream every day and expect to lose weight or be healthy at all. Let’s delve into what exactly a Paleo diet is and how it benefits or detracts from your health.

The Paleo diet is based on what man ate in the paleolithic period.

The Paleolithic period began about 2.6 million years ago to approximately 12,000 years ago. That was the period before farming and man was a hunter/gatherer. Consuming most grains didn’t exist, since there was no farming. Legumes and dairy also aren’t part of the diet, since man didn’t raise them. The whole premise of the diet is that the body made changes and evolved without the ability to digest those foods, so to be your healthiest and functioning at optimal level, you shouldn’t eat them either.

Consider the foods that are eliminated from the Paleo diet.

If grain is eliminated from the Paleo diet, then so are foods made with grain. Baked goods, pizza, donuts, bread and many snack foods. Sugar is a processed food, so anything with added sugar is also eliminated. So is oil. Highly processed foods are also eliminated, which makes the diet immediately healthier to eat. Rather than focus on what you can’t eat, focus on what you can. Animal meat is allowed, but the “whole animal” approach is encouraged. That means you eat organs, bone marrow and cartilage.

Vegetables, seeds, nuts and fruit are also part of the diet.

Put yourself into the mindset of what a hunter/gatherer might find as food. Bird eggs, meat and plants were all part of their diets. While oil isn’t part of the diet, foods that contain oils and natural fats, like avocados, nuts and seeds, are. Even though man didn’t ferment foods intentionally, some of them fermented naturally and man found they were okay to drink or eat. Fermented fruits and vegetables that are naturally fermented with no added sugar can be consumed. Food like kimchi, kombucha and sauerkraut are part of the Paleo diet.

  • Unlike early man, you probably won’t be sucking the marrow out of bones, but making a bone broth is beneficial. Bone broth has a high amount of collagen, glycine, glucosamine and chondroitin, the building blocks of the body.
  • Besides the diet, living like a caveman and getting plenty of sun and rest is important. Early man walked everywhere, so his body was in frequently in motion. Add those things to your lifestyle.
  • Sticking strictly to restrictions of the Paleo diet can be difficult. Use a modified form of the Paleo diet that cuts out processed food, sugar and products made with white flour immediately improves your diet.
  • Turn off electronic devices for several hours a day and enjoy the quiet that the caveman experienced. Drink more water. Clean water was a luxury and highly valued in some areas. Simplify life and learn to reduce stress to increase the benefits of healthy living.

For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health & Fitness

Why Is Too Much Sugar So Bad?

Why Is Too Much Sugar So Bad?

At Habitat Health and Fitness in Lakeland, Florida, we not only help you become stronger and fitter, we also encourage you to look at other areas that affect your fitness and health. Consuming too much sugar is one of those areas and it’s easy to do, especially if you have average eating habits. Some form of sugar seems to be in all types of products that are processed. Eating food with added sugar can have disastrous effects on your body and make it harder to get results at the gym.

New labeling makes it easier to identify the amount of added sugar.

At one time manufacturers hid the amount of sugar by using a variety of different sugars, so no one would appear at the top of the ingredient list, tricking the public into thinking sugar wasn’t a major ingredient. Why would any manufacturer do that? It helped sales. Being a bit sneaky about the amount of sugar in a product can lead you to eat it, not realizing how unhealthy it is. Sweet foods taste better to many and sugar is also addictive. It triggers the opioid receptors in the brain that bring pleasure. While it’s great for sales, because it makes you want to eat more, it’s bad for your health.

Keep your immune system running at full steam by skipping sugar.

If you’re like many Americans, you look for ways to boost your immune system, especially when there’s a chance infection from the latest flu or virus. You may take vitamin C, zinc, vitamin D or other type of nutrient. If you’re consuming foods with added sugar, all those extra vitamins may not make a difference. If you have a high amount of glucose in your bloodstream from eating too much sugar, the body latches onto the sugar, not the vitamin C, since they’re both similar in structure. That leaves the white blood cells—the phagocytes—powerless when it comes to fighting infection. Even healthy foods can have this effect. Orange juice is high in sugar and raises blood sugar levels quickly. Your body is blocked from using the vitamin C because of the glucose. Eating the whole orange slows the absorption of sugar because of the fiber, so you get the vitamin C benefits it contains.

Do you have insulin resistance or have problems losing weight?

Insulin resistance is a precursor to diabetes. It occurs when there’s too much glucose in the bloodstream. The body then produces more insulin. Normally, that would be all it takes, but with insulin resistance, the insulin doesn’t trigger the cells to open for the nourishment. That causes the body to produce even more insulin. Too much sugar causes the normal processes triggered by insulin to function improperly, which makes the pancreas work overtime and eventually causes the whole system to break down. Switching to a healthier diet with less added sugar, exercising and reducing stress can help prevent the problem.

  • Food’s high in added sugar are not heart healthy. While salt is often thought the culprit in high blood pressure, sugar is also a problem. If sugar comprises more than 25% of your calories, it also can cause the liver to increase fat in the bloodstream, which also can cause heart disease.
  • Sugar can cause premature aging. The glucose combines with proteins in a process called glycation. Ironically, that creates AGEs— advanced glycation end products. Those cells attack the elastin and collagen in the skin and make you look older.
  • Too much sugar can lead to inflammation. Inflammation can lead to diseases like osteoporosis, arthritis, heart disease, autoimmune diseases, bowel disorders and cancer.
  • The more sugar you have in your diet, the more potential you have for cognitive problems. High sugar intake can also lead to obesity, which is the leading cause of preventable deaths, even surpassing smoking.

For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health and Fitness

Proven Benefits Of Olive Oil

Proven Benefits Of Olive Oil

Like many of the healthier oils, olive oil is plant based. If it’s the highest quality, with the most nutritional benefits, it’s extra-virgin olive oil. Just what are the benefits of olive oil? First, its fatty acids are primarily monounsaturated. Those help your cholesterol profile by increasing the good cholesterol and decreasing the LDL or bad cholesterol. It also has about 14% saturated fat and 11% polyunsaturated, in the form of omega-6 and omega3. The more refined olive oil is the less oleic acid it contains. According to many studies, oleic acid reduces inflammation, which is linked to several serious conditions.

It’s good for the brain but don’t fry with olive oil, but use it to sauté, to dip or salad dressing.

Olive oil doesn’t have a high smoke point, which means at higher temperatures, it smokes. It also loses many of the health benefits and can actually degrade to create potentially harmful compounds. If you use extra virgin olive oil without the high heat, it has benefits like increased hair growth and increasing cognitive functioning. It’s the polyphenol oleocanthal that helps fight Alzheimer’s and the monounsaturated fat.

Lose weight and reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes with olive oil.

Like other types of fat, olive oil makes you feel fuller for longer, so you’ll eat less. The long-chain monounsaturated fats in olive oil digest more slowly, releasing energy over a longer time, unlike carbs that spike your blood sugar and then cause a sudden crash, making you want and sometimes, need to eat again sooner. Several studies have shown that a diet rich in olive oil, such as the Mediterranean diet, can also lower your risk for type 2 diabetes.

Olive oil may reduce your risk of stroke.

While heart disease is the leading cause of death in developed nations, strokes are the second leading cause. A scientific review of 841,000 subjects showed olive oil was the only monounsaturated oil that associated with reduced risk of stroke. A smaller review, which included 140,000 subjects, also showed that people who consumed olive oil had a far lower risk of stroke than those who didn’t. Those same studies also showed people who consumed more olive oil had a reduced risk of heart disease.

  • Antioxidants protect the cells from damage or death, which leads to disease and premature aging. Olive oil contains a large number of antioxidants to help protect your cells.
  • Oxidative damage can occur and cause cancer. The antioxidants in olive oil can help prevent oxidative damage from free radicals and reduce the risk of certain types of cancer. Test tube studies indicate olive oil compounds fight cancer cells.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis occurs when the immune system mistakes normal cells for invaders and attacks them. Olive oil can reduce the inflammatory marker and help reduce swelling and joint pain. You get even more benefits if you combine it with fish oil.
  • The antibacterial properties of olive oil can inhibit the growth or kill harmful bacteria, such as helicobacter pylori, which can cause stomach cancer and ulcers. Of the eight bacterium it fights, three are antibiotic resistant.

For more information, contact us today at Habitat Health and Fitness