We’re all about improved body composition. If you’re not following us on Facebook then you’re missing out – we post news and hot tips! Here’s a round up of some recent Facebook posts.
Fibre for digestive health
So we all know we are supposed to get lots of fibre in our diet. But why is it important?
First of all, there are two types of fibre – soluble and insoluble.
Insoluble fibre is the gritty stuff that acts like a brush for your intestines, sweeping away the debris to keep your colon clean and tidy. Without it you can end up constipated or with old festering food in there. Some people resort to colonic irrigation to keep their colons clean. Just get more fibre I say!
Soluble fibre forms a gel in the stomach, trapping sugars and other nutrients and slowing their release into the bloodstream. Soluble fibre is good for slowing the delivery of energy and will keep you feeling fuller for longer. That’s important if you’re trying to lose weight.
Fibre is also great for maintaining healthy gut bacteria.
Sounds like good stuff huh? Most fibre rich foods have both soluble and insoluble fibre. Get lots of vegetables, fruits, wholegrains, beans and pulses to make sure you’re getting enough and reaping the benefits.
Try slow push ups
The push up is a great exercise for the chest, shoulders, triceps and core. It’s a must-do exercise.
But what if you need more of a challenge and you have no equipment? Try slow push ups!
Do them like this: count to 5 on the way down. As soon as your chest touches the floor, reverse the movement, keeping the speed constant, then count to 5 on the way up. The hard bit is to keep the speed the same, especially on the push off at the bottom. No rest at the top, no rest at the bottom, just constant excruciating slow speed. It’s a killer 😀
Another reason I love the push up is because it’s also a plank! And when you can manage 6 or 7 slow push ups at 10 seconds a rep, that’s a pretty decent long plank you’re holding too.
Why not give it a go and tell us how many you managed?
Check the nutrient content!
How do you know if a food is good for you? Well we all know that fruit and vegetables are good for us.
But how do you know if other types of food are contributing anything to our health? That’s harder to answer.
I particularly like the website nutritiondata.self.com. If you have Flash player installed then it gives you great graphics that show you all sorts of facts about your food.
There’s one called the Nutrient Balance Indicator. It’s like a bar graph in a circle. It shows you the nutrient density of all the common minerals and vitamins, protein, fibre and those nutrients we often seek to restrict – sodium, cholesterol and saturated fat.
Take a look at broccoli. No surprises there. Packed with goodness and with an overall score of 92/100. Why is it not 100? Well it’s missing vitmain D and B12, but otherwise it’s chock full of goodness.
Take a look at this shortbread from a well known outlet. It contributes almost nothing to your health – a little bit of vitamin A. In fact, because of its high levels of saturated fat and sugar, it actually will have a negative influence on your health.
Every time you eat you have an opportunity to feed your body lots of goodness. You should take every opportunity to be healthy. That can only help you improve your body composition.
For complete all round health, be sure to include lots of variety in your diet.
Ross tames The Beast
Take a look at our client Ross pushing some impressive poundage on The Beast!
Ross’s strength has gone up massively in all his lifts – check out his incline bench press.
Ross has achieved this whilst also losing the best part of a stone in weight. The last time we tested his body composition – a month ago – he had put on 1.7kg of muscle in a month. I can’t wait to see what his latest scores are in his weigh-in next week!
Ross is following our advice to the letter and is reaping the benefit.
Testosterone for body composition
Testosterone – just a man thing, right?
No! Ladies, you have it too, you just have less of it. It has the same kind of benefits in women as in men:
– Muscle growth and strength, improved fat burning – better body composition!
– Improved mood, vitality, memory, confidence
– Better skin, hair and nails
– Improved bone density
– Sexual function and libido
– Red blood cell production
What’s not to like about it?
To keep your testosterone naturally optimal:
– Weight train – it has been proved time and again to boost T
– Sleep well
– Avoid a large extended calorie deficit
– Get enough vitamin D and zinc
– Get enough fat in your diet
– Avoid excess alcohol and caffeine
– Eat a healthy diet packed with fruit and veg
Make some changes: see and feel the difference!
If you’re wondering why I chose a stag to represent testosterone… well it’s just because we’re animal lovers 😀.
Avoiding the GI blues
I’m sure you’ve heard of the term ‘glycemic index’ (GI). But what does it mean and why is it important?
GI is a number that tells you how quickly a food raises your blood sugar. Pure glucose has a GI of 100 and is high GI. Anything below 50 is considered low GI.
High GI foods will not keep you full for long and you may experience a ‘sugar low’ an hour or two after eating them. The sugar low makes you crave more instantly gratifying high GI foods and because you feel very hungry you are likely to over eat. The cycle continues all day, for days, weeks…. and you put on weight. So the main issue with high GI foods is that they encourage poor eating behaviours.
Low GI foods are better choices because they take longer to digest and will keep you satisfied for longer. And because they tend to be unrefined and full of fibre, they are healthier and you’ll tend to eat less before your stomach tells you you’re full. That’s a good thing if you’re trying to improve your body composition.
So what are some low GI foods? Think unrefined. Vegetables, most temperate fruits (apples, pears, berries, plums etc), whole grains, beans, pulses, some tubers. These foods all have two things in common. Fibre and liquid content. That’s what makes them filling.
You can be healthier and eat less simply by making the right food choices.
Older, wiser, stronger
Are you resigned to the fact that you are going to become weak and feeble as you get older?
You don’t have to accept that!
True, our bodies make it harder to hold on to muscle as we age. Unless we take appropriate action we become weaker due mainly to sarcopenia – that’s a loss of muscle tissue.
But…. you can become stronger and build muscle at any age, particularly if you are not already exercising.
All you have to do is some form of resistance exercise, that’s weight training mainly, or exercise with powerful movements.
Maintaining or building muscle will help you stay functionally strong and fit for everyday life, improve you bone density to avoid breaks, improve your posture, your hormones, your metabolism, your body composition and your health markers. What’s not to like!
Believe it or not, it’s even more important to train with weights as you get older.
So what are you waiting for? Get out there, pump some iron and get STRONG!