Improve Your Fitness (Without Breaking a Sweat)

Health and fitness enthusiasts look for guidelines and health information and articles that can provide them with the best guidance possible. Experts provide tips on quality websites for the people that help in following up fitness programs in the accurate way. It becomes easier for the fitness conscious people to get the best result using tips provided, and this consumes…

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What’s Really in Those Food Labels?

Many people in the US today do not know how to properly read a nutrition label. If they were able to properly read a nutrition label than they might be surprised at the amount of calories they are eating or the amount salt they are in taking in. They might also be shocked to know just how small a serving size is of their favorite food.

On every food package you will find in the grocery store, there is a nutrition label on it. It is important to know what you are reading when you look at these labels.

The first thing that you will come across is the serving size. A serving size is the amount food that is considered to be a single serving. It is commonly measured in grams along with household measurements such as; cups and tablespoons.

The next thing you will find is the amount of servings in each package. You will often find that most packaged products have more than one serving in them. For example, a serving size of cereal might be ¾ of a cup but if you eat the whole box then you will have just ate 10 servings. So you will have to multiply the amount of calories by 10 to figure out the amount you have eaten.

The next thing that you will see is the amount of calories per serving and the amount of calories from fat.

Continuing to read down the line the next thing you will see are the nutrient values and the daily recommended values. This portion of information is where most of your information will come from.

Generally these items will all be listed in the same position every time. First is the total fat. Underneath the total fat will come the amount of saturated fat, polyunsaturated fat, and monounsaturated fat. Certain labels also include trans fat.

Then will come cholesterol.

The amount of salt, also known as sodium, is the next item on the list. Most the time it will be measured in milligrams and remember that 1000 mg equals 1 grams.

This will be followed up with the carbohydrates in each serving. Underneath the carbohydrates you will find the fiber and the sugar values. The sugar value that is listed contain both the sugar that is naturally occurring in the food and any added during the process of making it.

Finally you will have the protein listed.

And underneath all of these items you will be able to see the percentages of vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, and iron that are in each serving of the food. This is mandated to be on every food label by the government, regardless if the food has any of these vitamins in them or not. If there are other nutrients in the food in any significant amount, these will also be listed at the bottom.

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Foods That Can Help With Your Blood Pressure

Hypertension is unfortunately the most common disease in people around the world. It is commonly known as high blood pressure. Obesity and food that contains high salt and fats are some of the causes of high blood pressure. Fortunately there are many foods that can be helpful in controlling the high blood pressure levels. So along with taking your regular…

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Are Carbs Really THAT Bad?

So just how bad are carbs for us?

First of all, carbohydrates are not evil entities that should be avoided at all costs. In fact, to maintain a healthy nutrition level, it is very important to make sure that you get a sufficient amount of carbs daily for they are your bodies main source of energy.

There are two different types of carbohydrates and it is detrimental to your diet that you are able to differentiate between the two. For the most part carbs are comprised of cellulose, starches, and sugars which your body breaks down and converts them into glucose, commonly called blood sugar.

The first kind, the enemy to your waste line, are called simple carbohydrates, also known as sugar. So just how bad are carbs like these for us? Well simple carbs such as table sugar, honey, and anything that contains high-fructose corn syrup, are all digested rather quickly and give us the effects of a “sugar high” or a rush of energy.

How bad are carbs like the simple for our metabolism? We have all felt an energy surge after eating a cookie or a piece of chocolate. A good example is the hyper-active children on a playground after consuming their weight in koolaid and sugary snacks and or candies. That is the handy work of the complex carbs. Soon after, a major sugar crash is experienced and a state of low energy levels take over and make us feel exhausted. And most likely these simple sugars will leave us feeling even hungrier than before consumption.

But we must not forget the good carbs, also known as complex carbohydrates. Complex carbs consist of starchy and fiber-rich foods and take much longer for the body to digest. Examples of complex carbohydrates are fruits, legumes, grains, and other vegetables. Starchy foods include potatoes, wheat, rice, and corn.

But wait! Aren’t starches bad for us? How bad are carbs like starches? It is always best to remember to eat anything such as potatoes, rice, and pastas in moderation. Always remember the “calories-in, calories-out” rule. If you are going to eat a plate of pasta, make sure you plan on burning it off. Use the starch to your advantage. You absolutely can enjoy a delicious side of rice with your grilled chicken. But make sure its balanced with a heaping side of vegetables. Its best to over indulge on the more fibrous carbs. The more complex, the better for you.

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What Are Your Options for Quitting Smoking

There are so many websites today offering numerous ways to quit smoking, many the same or similar, some quite different. Today the government’s 1-800-QUITNOW hotline is receiving a record number of calls. From 2004 to 2010 the total number of calls received was just under three million. So far in just this year, 2011, there have been over six hundred thousand additional calls! It is clear that more Americans than ever before are seeking some way to end their habit/addiction to smoking cigarettes, and once and for all, stop smoking.

To successfully quit smoking, to really stop smoking, one must find the right solution to their problem. Many seek to stop smoking using the nicotine patch. The theory is that if one uses the nicotine patch, and slowly withdraws from nicotine by using less and less nicotine in the patches, that in the end, the desire to smoke will be gone. The success rate for this system is woefully small (1). In fact, it is similar (or less) to just trying to quit “cold turkey”. This tells us that the desire to smoke cannot simply be found in the addiction to nicotine. Surely that is a part of the syndrome, but it cannot be all of it, or the system would be 100% successful for each and every smoker using it. But it is not. Not even close. Far less than 10%

The same is true for those who choose to use the nicotine gum. This is gum saturated with nicotine in various amounts, used to withdraw from the addiction to nicotine. But nicotine gum works no better than does the nicotine patch (2).

One of the oldest programs to quit smoking is using a hypnosis program. Hypnotists have for decades been taking money from those who believe that a hypnosis to quit smoking program will help them to once and for all stop smoking. However, having been a clinical hypnotherapist in perhaps the largest and oldest hypnosis clinic in the USA, I can tell you that although I do believe hypnosis should be a part of a successful campaign to quit smoking, the vast majority of hypnotists do not know how to correctly use hypnosis to get their clients to quit smoking. So the end result is that using a hypnosis program to quit smoking is rarely successful in the long term.

In fact, Kerry Packer, who was, until his death in 2005, the most wealthy man in Australia and one of the world’s multibillionaires, is reported to have paid Marshall Sylver, a world renowned hypnotist, $100,000 for a single session of hypnosis to help him quit smoking. It did not take. Kerry Packer did not stop smoking through hypnosis.

To quit smoking now, what a smoker must do is begin to deal with the core issue that drives the desire to continue to smoke cigarettes. To quit smoking through hypnosis, the hypnosis must be properly applied. It should not focus on the present, telling the subject that they will no longer desire to smoke, or that the cigarettes will begin to taste like rotten eggs, or any other such nonsense. What the hypnotist must do is focus on the past, back to the time when the subject first decided to become a smoker. That point, the exact moment that smokers, almost invariably children of no more than fourteen, often as young as ten, the children started to hypnotize themselves into becoming smokers.

It is my firm belief that every smoker, every single one, is in a state of hypnosis. They hypnotized themselves into becoming smokers, as after all, any hypnotist worth his or her salt will tell you that all hypnosis is self-hypnosis. It is not a capturing process as the old Dracula movies would suggest, but a leading process. In other words, the hypnotist leads the subject into a state of mind wherein the subject accepts and internalizes the suggestions of the hypnotist. But the hypnotist is not issuing commands, only offering suggestions that the subject may or may not choose to follow.

When someone tries to quit smoking after a decade or more after starting, they most often fail, and then believe it is because they lack the will power to overcome the addiction. Most see it as a weakness in their character. This is not true. What is true is that their inability to stop smoking by simply exerting their will is a testament to the commitment they made to themselves to become a smoker in the first place. They hypnotized themselves to start smoking, and they must reverse that hypnosis at the subconscious level to end it. To quit smoking, to stop smoking successfully and never desire to smoke again takes returning the person to the psychological state they were in before they committed to become a smoker.

I know there are those who smoke who will say, “I am not hypnotized!” But have they ever been hypnotized? Do they even know what being hypnotized feels like? Tell me this. Would anyone who is not in an altered state of consciousness (which takes them a step away from reality) knowingly take a chemically treated poison weed, wrapped in chemically treated poisonous paper, light it on fire and breath the toxic fumes from that fire as often as two hundred times per day (twenty cigarettes times ten drags from each) every day of their life for ten, twenty, thirty years or more, knowing that the end result may well be a painful, costly and prolonged death, and believe that they are experiencing some sort of “pleasure”, pay dearly to do that, and not be in a state of hypnosis?

No one starts smoking because they want to enjoy the taste of a burning cigarette. No one I have ever heard of enjoyed that first cigarette, especially after inhaling that first time. I know I didn’t. I became instantly nauseous and nearly threw up. I was dizzy and at ten years old, decided that smoking was not for me.

But four years later, after associating with three other boys my age in my new school, and dearly desiring to become a part of their “gang”, I believed I had to become a smoker as they were. I clearly remember asking myself what I call the “critical question”. I remember where I was and what I felt. The question was, “Do I really want to be a smoker?” Of course, after very little consideration, I said, “Yes!” Then I proceeded to inhale the cigarette I’d just lit, stolen from my parents stash, and got sick, waited until it passed, then did it again, until I could do it without feeling like puking. It only took a few days before I was smoking just like my new friends, blowing smoke rings and “looking cool”.

I, like almost every smoker I have interviewed over the years of my work as a smoking cessation coach, started smoking for three main reasons. They are

1) If only adults smoke and I smoke, I will appear to be more mature, more “adult-looking”. But that was true only to those younger than me. To true adults, I simply looked like a foolish little boy trying to look older.

2) My friends are doing it, and if I want to be more like my friends, I will start smoking like them. I will then be more accepted by them. I don’t truly think that they accepted me more, or would have accepted me any less had I opted not to become a smoker, but that was my thinking at the time.

3) Smoking is sexy. In the movies, I saw James Dean, Humphrey Bogart, Elizabeth Taylor and so many other sex symbols smoke and look “sexy and cool” smoking. I wanted to be like them; to be more sexually attractive. After all, John Wayne was advertising cigarettes on TV. If “The Duke” said it was the thing to do, who was I to believe otherwise. And add to that, every single adult in my family smoked. (And with the exception of my mother, who died as a result of an auto accident at 43, all died with smoking related cancers.) So smoking was simply a right of passage into adulthood in my life in the fifties.

So let’s review. I chose to smoke cigarettes to appear more mature. I attached the behavior to my sense of maturity. I chose to smoke cigarettes to become closer to my friends, more accepted by them. I attached the behavior to my sense of social acceptability. I chose to smoke cigarettes to appear more sexually attractive. I attached the behavior to my sense of sexuality. And I did these three things at perhaps the most critical point in my development; while I was establishing my internal self-image. I was deciding who and how I was in the world, what my values are, and how I would behave in the future. One of those facets of that image was…I was and would continue to be a cigarette smoker.

When I finally awoke to the reality that smoking was a foolish, expensive and more than a bit anti-social thing to be doing over a decade later, I found that I could not simply stop smoking by just making that decision. I could not quit smoking using all the will power I had. I gave up trying for another five years.

But at that point, nearly thirty years old, I asked myself another critical question. This one seemed foolish, even to me at the time. But I asked it seriously of myself, and began to seek the answer. That question was: “How can I quit smoking, stop smoking forever, and still not deny myself a cigarette any time I want to smoke one?”

Eventually I did find the answer, actually many of them. I developed a process for myself wherein I could smoke every cigarette I wanted, and watched myself, step by step, day by day, week by week, lose my desire to smoke. Today I have no desire whatsoever to ever smoke another cigarette, something no one who has quit cold turkey can honestly say. I have successfully de-hypnotized myself from being a smoker. I am wide awake to what smoking is and does to the human body.

What I found out along the way was this. Smoking is not even the true problem, especially if you are using vaporizers like these. The problem is the desire to smoke. This desire is at the core of every smoker’s addiction. To quit smoking, to truly stop smoking forever, one must deal with that core issue. One must lose the desire to smoke. Then the cigarettes will be gone for good.

We cannot change the past, but we can change the way we remember it and how those memories affect our lives today.

To quit smoking and start vaping, you need not try to focus on the symptom of your problem, the smoking. To stop smoking, you must work on the core issue driving that symptom, the desire to smoke. Once you remove that incredibly strong hypnotic suggestion you have implanted in your psyche so many years ago, the symptom, smoking, will be gone forever.

Don’t you want that?

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