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Health & Fitness

Memory Loss Can be Reversed — Just Do THIS

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Moderate physical activity performed in midlife or later appears to be associated with a reduced risk of mild cognitive impairment — and a six-month high-intensity aerobic exercise program can improve cognitive function in individuals who already have the condition.
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Each year, 10 percent to 15 percent of individuals with mild cognitive impairment will develop dementia, as compared with 1 percent to 2 percent of the general population.

Physical exercise may protect against mild cognitive impairment by means of the production of nerve-protecting compounds, greater blood flow to the brain, improved development and survival of neurons and the decreased risk of heart and blood vessel diseases.

Rources:
Eurekalert January 11, 2010
Archives of Neurology January 2010;67(1):71-9
Archives of Neurology January 2010;67(1):80-6

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Categories
Health Alert

Sitting All Day as Bad as Little Exercise

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Sitting all day may significantly boost the risk of lifestyle-related disease even if one adds a regular dose of moderate or vigorous exercise, Is too much sitting as bad as too little exercise?
………………………………….CLICK & SEE
The health benefits of pulse-quickening physical activity are beyond dispute — it helps ward off cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity, among other problems.

But recent scientific findings also suggest that prolonged bouts of immobility while resting on one’s rear end may be independently linked to these same conditions.

“Sedentary time should be defined as muscular inactivity rather than the absence of exercise,” concluded a team of Swedish researchers. “We need to consider that we are dealing with two distinct behaviours and their effects,” they reported in the British Journal of Sports Medicine .

Led by Elin Ekblom-Bak of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, the scientists proposed a new “paradigm of inactivity physiology,” and urged fellow researchers to rethink the definition of a sedentary lifestyle.

They point to a recent study of Australian adults showing that each daily one-hour increase in sitting time while watching television upped the rate of metabolic syndrome in women by 26 percent — regardless of the amount of moderate-to-intensive exercise performed.

Thirty minutes of daily physical exercise decreased the risk by about the same percentage, suggesting that being a couch potato can cancel out the benefits of hitting treadmill or biking, for example. Metabolic syndrome is defined as the presence of three or more factors including high blood pressure, abdominal obesity, high cholesterol or insulin resistance. New research is required to see if there is a causal link between being sedentary and these conditions and, if so, how it works, the researchers said.

One candidate is lipoprotein lipase, or LPL, an enzyme that plays a crucial role in breaking down fat within the body into useable forms. Recent research has shown that LPL activity was significantly lower in rats with restrained muscle activity — as low as one tenth of the levels of rats allowed to walk about.

The LPL level during such activity “was not significantly different from that of rats exposed to higher levels of exercise,” the scientists reported. “This stresses the importance of local muscle contraction per se, rather than the intensity of the contraction.”

These studies suggest that people should not only exercise frequently, but avoid sitting in one place for too long, they said.

Climbing stairs rather than using an elevator, taking five-minute breaks from a desk job, and walking when possible to do errands rather than driving were all recommended.

Source: The Times Of India

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Categories
Exercise Featured

Aerobics at Middle Age Delays Aging

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A new study has found that staying aerobically fit, especially through middle age and beyond, can delay biological aging by up to 12 years and prolong independence during old age.

Aerobic exercise, such as jogging, swimming, cycling or walking – improves a person’s oxygen consumption and boosts their metabolism.

But maximal aerobic power starts to fall steadily from middle age, decreasing by around 5 ml/ [kg.min] every decade.

When it falls below around 18 ml in men and 15 ml in women, it becomes difficult to do very much at all without severe fatigue.

In a typical sedentary man, the maximal aerobic power will have fallen to around 25 mil/ [kg.min] by the age of 60, almost half of what it was at the age of 20.

But the evidence shows that regular aerobic exercise can slow or reverse the inexorable decline, even in later life.

Research by scientists at the University of Toronto in Canada has shown that high-intensity exercise, taken regularly for more than a year, can boost maximal aerobic power by 25 percent, equivalent to a gain of 6 ml/ [kg.min], or 10 to 12 biological years.

“There seems good evidence that the conservation of maximal oxygen intake increases the likelihood that the healthy elderly person will retain functional independence,” an author said.

The other positive spin-offs of aerobic exercise are reduced risks of serious disease, faster recovery after injury or illness, and reduced risks of falls because of the maintenance of muscle power, balance, and coordination.

The results are published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine .

Sources: The Times Of India

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Categories
Healthy Tips

Tips for Weight Loss and Maintenance

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Have you decided to start eating healthier and become more physically active? Have you realized that healthy choices have a positive impact on not only yourself, but also those around you?
If your goal is to lose weight or maintain your current healthy weight, here are some tips to help you achieve that goal. Remember, to maintain weight, you must balance calories with the energy you burn through physical activity. If you eat more than you expend, you gain weight. If you eat less (reduce calories) than you expend, you lose weight!

Make healthy choices a habit. This leads to a healthy lifestyle! Make a commitment to eat well, move more, and get support from family and friends. Even better, start eating healthier and being active together!

Remember to be realistic about your goals. If you try to reduce the calories, fat, saturated fat, and sugar in your diet AND promise to make a drastic change in your physical activity level, you may be setting yourself up for failure. Instead of trying to make many changes at once, set smaller, more realistic goals for yourself and add a new challenge each week.

Conduct an inventory of your meal/snack and physical activity patterns.
Keep a food and activity journal. Write down not only what you ate, but where, when, and what you were feeling at the time. You will see what triggers your hunger and what satisfies your appetite. What foods do you routinely shop for? What snacks do you keep in the pantry?

Eat at least 5 servings of vegetables and fruits per day. If you’re adding fruits and vegetables to your diet, remove the higher calorie, less nutrition foods from your diet and substitute them with the fruits and vegetables.

Eat foods that are high in fiber to help you feel full. Whole grain cereals, legumes (lentils and beans), vegetables, and fruits are good sources of fiber that may help you feel full with fewer calories.

Prepare and eat meals and snacks at home. This is a great way to save money, eat healthy, and spend time with your family. When preparing meals, choose low-fat/low-calorie versions of your favorite ingredients and learn how easy it is to substitute.

For example:

1.  Switch to 1% or nonfat milk and low-fat cheeses.
2. Use a cooking spray instead of oil or butter to decrease the amount of fat when you cook.
3. Prepare baked potatoes with low-fat blue cheese dressing or low-fat plain yogurt instead of butter or sour cream.
Start by using a scale and measuring cup to serve your food. Read food labels to determine serving sizes. One bowl of cereal may actually be two  ¾-cup servings. A small frozen pizza may contain up to three servings (check the nutrition information label). This could add up to more calories than you think you’re getting. Being aware of serving sizes may make it easier to avoid those extra calories.

Choose snacks that are nutritious and filling. A piece of fresh fruit, cut raw vegetables, or a container of low-fat yogurt are excellent (and portable) choices to tide you over until mealtimes. Take these snacks with you for a healthy alternative to chips, cookies, or candy.

Take your time!
Eat only when you are hungry and enjoy the taste, texture, and smell of your meal as you eat it. Remember, it takes approximately 15 minutes for your stomach to signal your brain that you are full.

If you choose to eat out, remember these important suggestions: Watch your portions. Portion sizes at restaurants (including fast food) are usually more than one serving, which can result in overeating. Choose smaller portion sizes, order an appetizer and a leafy green salad with low-fat dressing, share an entree with a friend, or get a “doggy bag” and save half for another meal.

Forgive yourself. If you occasionally make mistakes, don’t give up! Forgive yourself for making that choice and keep working on it. Eat an extra healthy lunch and dinner if you had a high-calorie, high-fat breakfast. Add more physical activity to your day.

Remember physical activity! Aim for at least 30 minutes (adults) or 60 minutes (children) of moderate-intensity physical activity five or more days of the week. If you are just starting to be physically active, remember that even small increases provide health benefits. Check with your physician first, and then start with a few minutes of activity a day and gradually increase, working your way up to 30 minutes. If you already get 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity a day, you can gain even more health benefits by increasing the amount of time that you are physically active or by taking part in more vigorous-intensity activities.

Source:www.teengrowth.com