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How To Eat After Lap Band Surgery

May 24, 2016
lap band surgery

Lap band surgery is often considered a last resort for weight loss, but for many patients, it’s the only way they are able to get control of their weight and see significant changes in their body. This procedure adjusts the amount of food a person’s stomach can take in at one time, preventing the person from eating excessively. If you have opted to go through lap band surgery, you will need to make some adjustments to your diet after completing the procedure. Here is an overview of the lap band surgery dietary changes you may have to make in the future.

1-2 Weeks After Surgery: The Liquid Diet

When you first get out of surgery, your body will not be able to handle any kinds of solid foods. Thus you will have to stick to a liquid diet for close to two weeks as your body heals and makes adjustments. Broth or soup will work well at this time, as long as the soup does not have any vegetables or meat in it. You could also try drinking skim milk or fruit juice. You may have to take vitamins for dietary supplementation at this time, but you will first need to confirm that with your doctor.

3-4 Weeks After Surgery: The Pureed Feast

This is the time when you can start adding food back into your diet. After being on pure liquids for two weeks, every bite will taste like a feast. Stick with pureed foods, like mashed potatoes, apple sauce, peas, pudding, and low-fat yogurt. These will help your body get used to something slightly solid without having to process a giant steak.

5 Weeks After Surgery: The Soft Foods

At this point, you can start eating soft foods. Tender fish, pork, ground turkey, cooked vegetables, and other foods will work well. You will be used to eating smaller, lighter portions by now, so you won’t eat as much as you probably think you will. Of course, that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

6+ Weeks After Surgery: The Regular Routine

Once you have slowly worked solid foods back into your system, you can return to a normal diet. You will naturally eat small portions now, which you will need to continue doing after lap band surgery. Maintain your nutrient levels and make sure you eat slowly. In time, your new eating regimen will just become a habit for you.

Blog Diet

5 Benefits Of Weight Loss Cleanses

May 11, 2016
weight loss cleanse

With the number of fad diets in the world, it’s hard to rely on any of the new developments coming out. Nevertheless, there are some tried and true weight loss solutions that have proven themselves effective time and time again. One of those gems is a cleansing diet, which removes toxins from the body to allow healthy nutrients to shine through. Here are five benefits of weight loss cleanses so you can decide if you should give one of them a try.

Eliminate Toxins To Lose Weight

The main goal in any diet is to lose weight, right? Well, all those toxins in your body could be weighing you down. By going through a proper cleansing, you will improve your body’s ability to burn fat and maintain healthy nutrients. The result is a slimmer, happier you.

Naturally Boost Your Energy Levels

Toxins can also cause you to lose energy and feel depressed. Think about how great you feel after a bath or a trip to the spa. A cleansing regiment provides the same effect for your body’s inner workings. The less gunk there is to clog the system, the easier it will be for you to do whatever you want to do.

Think Clearer

You can actually think better after a thorough weight loss cleanse. The increased energy you gain from a diet like this will improve your ability to retain information, and you’ll find yourself remembering much more than you ever thought possible. You’ll also make better, more logical decisions, all while improving the way you look.

Let Your Body Absorb Nutrients Better

Some cleansing diets also include nutritional supplements, and they improve the body’s ability to maintain the nutrients coming in. You could use this as an opportunity to make yourself healthier, which will enhance your ability to fight off infection. As long as stick with the dietary program you are on, you should see strong improvements in your wellness.

Learn Healthy Habits

Above all else, your cleansing diet will teach you healthy habits to use in the future. You will eat better food in a better way, and you will understand what your body really needs to be its best. This means that you will be able to maintain the new you for a long time in the future without having to put too much effort into the way you look. It’s all a matter of sticking with the program you select.

Find a cleansing program you can count on, and you will feel and look better in no time.

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Risks Of Rapid Weight Loss

March 29, 2016
rapidweightloss-370x284

When it comes to losing weight, most people try to do so as quickly as possible. As much as you may want to get down to your ideal body weight right away, the fact is that there are a lot of problems that may come from losing weight too quickly. That is why programs like Weight Watchers are so successful, because they help people lose weight gradually over time. Before you get your heart set on dropping a ton of weight in a short period of time, you need to understand the risks of losing weight too quickly, as discussed below.

Flabby Skin

One of the biggest problems that come along from rapid weight loss is developing excess skin. Your skin will shrink to a degree, but it may not have enough elasticity to fully retract if you lose weight quickly. You have to give it time to do this though because the fat is what is currently giving your skin its shape. If you are not careful, you may end up with a whole lot of excess skin to worry about. Then you will have to get surgery or build muscle to get your body back to normal.

Bad Habits

In order to lose weight and keep it off, you need to develop good eating and exercising habits that you can maintain. If you lose weight quickly, you are only fixing the problem temporarily. You could very easily fall back into your old habits soon after you lose the weight, and then you are going to gain even more weight than you had in the first place.

Take your time to really train yourself to eat the right way and exercise regularly. If you have to cut back your portions slowly, do so. If you need time to improve your fitness stamina, give it to yourself. As frustrating as the wait may be, it will keep you looking better in the long run.

Depression And Chemical Imbalances

If you drop weight too rapidly, you can cause hormonal and chemical imbalances in your body. Those imbalances can have a big impact on your mood. You would think that losing weight would make you happier, but that is not always the case. In some situations, people actually go through clinical depression because they have altered too much in their bodies too quickly. You have to be careful to lose weight in a safe, slow manner or you could alter your attitude for the worst. Then you may end up gaining more weight and feeling even more depressed about your body. This is a vicious cycle, but it is one that you can avoid if you lose weight the right way.

Fad Dieting

Most people turn to fad diets when they want to lose a lot of weight in a short amount of time. That may cause you to eat only salmon for a month straight or take out an entire food group from your daily eating habits. This will cause nutritional problems in your body, which may make you weaker or less productive. If you stick with regular diets and exercising, you will be able to get all the nutrients you need without having to worry about what they may be doing to your body.

Simply put, you need to pace yourself when it comes to losing weight. Set logical weight loss goals for your body and stick to them the whole way through. This may take more time, but it will keep your body looking great for as long as it possible can.

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Skin Changes After Weight Loss

March 21, 2016
Woman pinching fat from her abdomen. Close up shot

Dropping weight is almost never a bad thing, especially if you have been struggling with it for a while. In the midst of your celebration though, you may come across a whole new problem to worry about – changes in your skin. There are a number of skin changes after weight loss, depending on age, health, and other factors. If you’re going through this transition at the moment or simply trying to prepare for the future, the tips below will help you keep your skin looking its best after losing weight.

Types Of Skin Changes After Weight Loss

Weight loss brings about a wide range of health benefits, but some of them take a little while to kick in. During this time, your skin may show signs of wear and tear because it is trying to catch up with the other changes in your body. Some of the most common skin changes after weight loss include:

  • Dry Or Oily Skin
  • Sagging Skin
  • Fine Lines And Wrinkles
  • Cellulite
  • Leftover Scars And Stretchmarks

Depending on the amount of weight you lose, you may go through multiple skin changes as you work toward your ideal weight. Tackle each of these transitions as they come about, and you will be able to keep your skin looking its best.

Keep Your Skin Moisturized

Try to keep your skin as moist as possible, unless you have problems with oiliness. Most people who are overweight will see positive changes in their skin’s moisture levels once they go on a diet, but there are some eating regimens that dry out the skin. At the very least, maintaining the moisture levels in your skin will keep it looking as plump as possible, which will fill in the divots that were once backed by fat. Find a good moisturizing cream to use on a daily basis, and you’ll make your skin look soft and smooth.

Use Microdermabrasion at Home

Microdermabrasion is a process that takes off the dead skin cells at the surface and encourages new cells to grow. As you shed weight, it’s a good idea to shed these dead cells as well because they can make your skin look duller than it actually is. The new cells that grow will be just as vibrant as they would be for a baby, so you can instantly look younger and healthier after microdermabrasion. Once you get used to this, you’ll find yourself trying it all the time.

Practice Good Hygiene

You may have folded skin after weight loss. This is because your skin is losing its elasticity and cannot properly contract itself. Some people are required to go through surgery to remove that excess skin, depending on their age, health, and overall weight loss. In the meantime though, it is important to wash the cracks and crevices well. All of those areas can get gunk caught in them, which can potentially lead to infection or foul odors. You can avoid all of that with proper hygiene.

Use Sunscreen When Outside

Larger people are used to covering up when they go outside, but that all changes when you lose weight. If you suddenly find yourself showing off your new frame, you need to make sure you protect it with a little sunscreen. Even if the only area exposed is your face, you need to apply moisturizer or foundation with SPF in order to avoid sunburn. This will keep your skin looking its best for years to come.

There is no reason to avoid showing off your stunning new body. You just have to make sure your skin highlights it in the right way. Follow the tips above, and you’ll look great no matter what.

 

Blog Diet

Eating Asian Food Could Improve Your Appearance

December 22, 2015
chinese food with various vegetables and rice

Let’s face it – we live in a superficial world. Beauty holds a lot of value in today’s society, and feeling better about you appearance may improve your self-esteem as a whole. One of the easiest ways to change the way you look and feel is to adjust the foods in your diet. Let’s take a look at some of the ways Asian foods can improve your appearance and boost your confidence for the future.

Antioxidants

Most Asian foods are rich in antioxidants because they require fresh, healthy ingredients. Antioxidants can clear toxins out of your body, leaving you with better looking skin and less weight on a regular basis. Tomatoes, leafy greens, garlic, onions, and berries are all use in a variety of Asian recipes. Those foods are rich in antioxidants, and they taste great too. You can enjoy eating healthy and looking better all at once with the right recipes on hand.

Digestion

Your digestion is going to have a large impact on your beauty because it will determine how your body distributes fat, energy, and food in general. Many of the foods used in Asian cooking promote healthy digestion, and they also improve your blood circulation. That means that your food will stay in your body for a shorter amount of time, leaving less fat for your body to hold onto. Any exercise you do from there will go towards helping you lose weight.

Note that having a healthy digestive system will also help clear toxins out of your body, so you can enjoy the benefits from above continually if you keep your diet in check.

Energy

Most Asian recipes involve natural energy boosters in fruits and vegetables. When you have more energy, you are likely to do more throughout the day. Thus all you have to do is get a good set of Asian recipes to stay energized, hydrated, and strong every day of the week. You may not even need coffee or candy to perk yourself up for the day. Your diet can do that for you.

Finding Asian Food To Try

Finding good Asian food to eat is simply a matter of trying new things. There are plenty of recipes and ingredients to help you develop a healthy Asian diet, and that diet should lead to a better looking body for you to enjoy. Check out my Asian Sesame Chicken recipe for a quick start! Take a look at yourself in the mirror and figure out what you want to change about yourself. Then use Asian foods to help you make those changes.

Blog Diet

5 Bad Study Snacks

December 15, 2015
Female student sitting on the floor and making notes, view over the shoulder

Some foods are said to have positive impacts on a college student’s ability to study, but there are just as many foods out there that can have a negative impact. Students are known for pigging out on junk food, but doing so may hinder you from acing your next exam. If you want to get the most out of your study sessions, you need to know which snacks to avoid. Here are five study snacks to avoid.

Spicy Foods

Spicy foods will mess with your stomach and cause you to make instant bathroom runs. You may love the Blazin’ sauce from Buffalo Wild Wings, but you need to reserve that for another time. The last thing you want is an upset stomach while studying.

Turkey

Turkey is very heavy, and it is guaranteed to make you sleepy. You may not have to worry about deli turkey meat, but Thanksgiving leftovers are a big no-no for study time. Try a different meat instead or eat a nice salad. This may not sound as delicious, but it will definitely help you study.

Bread

Bread is highly absorbent, so it will soak up anything you drink after eating it. This will make your stomach feel full, which will either cause a tummy ache or make you sleepy. Try to eat crackers instead of bread. They’re not quite as absorbent, and they still taste great with most sandwich toppings.

Potato Chips

This is more of a mess standpoint than anything else. Potato chips are inherently greasy, and they’re bound to make a mess all over your books. Plus, the fat and grease from the chips are liable to make you feel lethargic and unenergetic. Stick with crackers or at the very least baked chips if you want to maintain some shred of cleanliness.

Candy

The sugar high from candy may be great, but it comes with a crash you won’t want. You will most likely have about an hour of jitters, followed by a quick need for a nap. Try to each fruit instead because it contains natural sugars. Apples, oranges, pomegranates and more are all great for staying alert, and they will keep you awake or a longer period of time. Avoid the Starburst and gummy bears until after your test. Then you can reward yourself with some frozen yogurt or another delicious dessert.

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How To Control Your Food Intake

November 19, 2015
Concept illustration of a pie chart on a plate, one segment is served.

If you are used to eating whatever you want, whenever you want, it may be difficult to transition to a healthy diet. Learning to control your food intake will allow you to lose weight faster and crave less food throughout the day. Here are some tips to help you monitor your food intake so you can slim down your body.

Drink Water Before You Eat

You can trick your stomach into thinking you have eaten more by drinking a glass of water before a meal. This will give you less room to fill up with food, and it will give the food something to soak up when it hits your stomach. This absorption will make you feel fuller faster, ultimately causing you to eat less. The extra hydration is just an added bonus!

Listen To Your Body

Your body knows when it is full, and you need to understand the signals it sends you at that time. If you feel like you don’t need to eat anymore, don’t. It’s as simple as that. Just because you have food in front of you doesn’t mean you have to eat it all. By eating less, you may be able to reduce your portion sizes in the future. Respect your stomach’s decision to stop eating, and you won’t feel stuffed every time you eat.

Control Your Portions

If you are used to eating huge meals, try to reduce the amount of food you put on your plate. Don’t tell yourself, “Oh, I’ll only eat half of this.” Put half of it on your plate and store or throw away the rest. Even if you still consume the same foods you currently eat, you need to eat them in smaller portions. That will train your stomach to eat less in the future. Ideally, you should also adjust to eating healthier foods throughout the day, but a simple reduction is a good start.

Eat Slowly

If you scarf down your food every time you get a chance, you may not give your body a chance to tell you that it’s full. Put your fork down after every bite and chew it like it you mean it. Try not to watch TV intensely while you want because then you may just pack away the food subconsciously. Think about every bite you put into your mouth, and eventually you will be able to turn down the ones you don’t need.

Blog Diet

Gourmet Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

October 27, 2015
grilled-cheese

Most people make grilled cheese sandwiches on the stove with plain white bread and a slice of Kraft Singles. When you think about it though, grilled cheese was meant to be made on the grill. If you’re going to take your grilled cheese to its rightful home on the grill, you might as well jazz it up a bit. Here are some simple ways to make gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches.

Bacon

Bacon makes everything better. Burgers, steaks, and even ice cream taste better with bacon in them. Next time you have some extra bacon left from breakfast, save it for your grilled cheese sandwiches. Cook the bacon on the grill before you put it in the sandwich. Then add it on top of the cheese and let the cheese melt over it. If you want to go the “low fat” route, use turkey bacon instead. Either way, you’re sure to have a delicious sandwich to munch on.

Sauce

Grilled cheese sandwiches don’t need sauce, but that doesn’t mean you can’t add a little to them. Sundried tomato dressing pairs well with grilled cheese because it has a rich, smoky flavor to it. You could try cracked pepper mayonnaise, ranch dressing, thousand island, or even plain old ketchup. Just make sure that whatever you add doesn’t take away from the cheese. It should enhance it.

Grilled Vegetables

If you want to add a healthy twist to your grilled cheese, try adding in some vegetables. If grilled onions are a little too sweet for your taste buds, you might try grilled bell peppers or jalapenos. You could also use tomatoes, squash, banana peppers, radishes, etc. Pair all of this with a nice sauce or some kind of meat, and you could have a whole feast made from a simple sandwich.

Upgraded Ingredients

Why stop at cheddar or American cheese when you make your sandwiches? You could try provolone, asiago, Gouda, Swiss – whatever kind of cheese you like. Test out different combinations until you find something you like. You can also try different kinds of bread to see if you like anything special. Artisan breads bring out a uniquely country flavor, but you could also try rye, multi-grain, wheat, pumpernickel, or anything else you want. Your local bakery probably has a variety of specialty breads that would work well for sandwiches. They may even have cheeses that you can’t get at the grocery store. Think about your options and you’re sure to enjoy every one of your grilled cheese sandwiches.

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Why Can’t I Lose Weight?

October 26, 2015
Hand of slim female with green apple

In theory, all you need is a good diet and exercise regime to lose weight. This is true to a degree, but there is more to the story than that. If you want to lose weight quickly and effectively, you need to go a couple steps beyond calorie counting and power walking. If you’re constantly asking yourself, “Why can’t I lose weight?” you may need to rethink your fitness strategies. Here are some reasons why your diet may not be working for you.

You Have Built-up Toxins In Your Body

Toxins are everywhere, from the foods you eat to the air you inhale. Over time, they can essentially clog your system, making it hard for you to lose weight. Spend some time on a cleansing diet or talk to your doctor about something a little more thorough. This will help you look a whole lot better, and it will make you feel better as well.

You Don’t Have A Consistent Eating Schedule

Bodies love routines, and they adapt to them pretty quickly. Have you ever woken up a minute or two before your alarm went off? That’s your body responding to a routine. If your eating schedule is messy, your body may hold onto food for fear that it may have to go without. The same can be said if you overly eat one day and then try to starve yourself the next to make up for it. Your body wants consistency. Get on a regular schedule so it can adjust.

Your Portions Are Too Large

Eating good food won’t mean a darn thing if your portions are too large. Some people try to eat one or two giant meals a day, and then they end up staying at the same weight forever. You should eat several small portions throughout the day so your body has time to digest the food. Instead of three square meals, you might have five or six triangular ones. You’ll still be eating the same amount of food in the end, but the reduced portions will greatly improve your chances of losing weight.

You Have A Negative Body Image

It seems silly to say that you can “think” your way to a new body, but you really can. If you constantly think about how bad you look, you’re going to continue looking that way. Buy some new clothes and try to build up your confidence a bit. Then motivate yourself to look even better. This is all mind over matter. You just have to retrain your brain.

You Are Not Truly Committed To Your Diet

If you really do want to see a positive change in your body, you need to stay committed to your diet. Don’t go off it for a few days and splurge. Stick with the plan until you see results. The more focused you are, the more likely you are to lose weight.

Follow the tips above during your diet, and you should see better results in the future.

Blog Diet

How To Grill Indoors (Safely!)

September 28, 2015
vegetables on electric grill

Summer is coming to an end, which means it may soon be time for you to put up your grill for the winter. Just because the season is over doesn’t mean you have to give up on your favorite grilled foods. All you have to do is find a way to grill inside the house. The list below shows some in-home alternatives to outdoor grills that won’t burn down your walls when you use them.

Countertop Grills

The easiest way to get the effect of an outdoor grill inside is to buy an appliance that’s designed to be an in-home grill. The George Foreman grills are the most well-known models on the market, but they are far from the only options you have to choose from. A countertop grill will have the same basic effect as an outdoor grill, and it will even put grill marks on your meat or vegetables. The only thing you’ll be missing is that smoky flavor you can’t get without wood chips or charcoal to cook over. For now, it’ll be a sufficient substitute. You’ll just have to add extra spices to make up for the smoke you’re missing out on.

Griddles

A griddle won’t provide you with the sexy grill marks you may expect on your food, but it will still cook your meat and vegetables well. A lot of people prefer griddles over pans on the stove because they offer a flat surface to work on. You could make everything from pancakes to hot ham and cheese sandwiches on a griddle, and you won’t have to do much to clean the top when you’re done. Just note that you won’t be able to cook more than a couple things on there at once.

Toaster Ovens

Some toaster ovens have a setting that will let you “grill” food inside of them. Of course, all you’re really doing is baking directly on the rack, which you could do in a traditional oven. Nevertheless, you could hit a button to change the way the appliance heats up inside. If you are just trying to work with bread, you could throw it in a toaster. You just can’t do that with meat or vegetables.

Note that if you cook meat directly on your oven rack, the fat that drips from it may cause problems with your heating coils. It may be best to put the meat on a pan of some sort that you drain off every once and a while.

Electric Grills

You can buy grills that look like charcoal grills but actually run on electricity. These are just overgrown countertop grills, but they give you a chance to cook more food at once. You can use these inside and outside as long as you have a power source. If you live in an area that rarely warms up enough to grill outside, this may be the best option for you.