Health Archives

Green-Tea.png
April 23, 201700

If you’ve been wanting to get rid of that stubborn belly-fat, then you’ve probably heard from your trainer or friends about Green Tea. Green tea, is one of the healthiest beverages around. It’s a rich source of antioxidants, and various other substances that are beneficial for health. Indeed, the benefits of green tea for weight loss are many, and we’re breaking them down for you.

#1 Green tea is rich in substances that aid fat-loss

When you drink a cup of green tea, what you’re taking in are the following beneficial substances:

  • Caffeine: A cup of green tea contains much less caffeine (20-40 mg), than a cup of coffee (100-200 mg), but enough to have a mild effect. Caffeine is known to be a stimulant that burns fat and helps in exercise performance as per studies
  • Antioxidants: Green tea is rich in antioxidants, called catechins, the most important out of these is EGCG (Epigallocatechin gallate), which boosts metabolism

These substances improve metabolism, and help in fat-loss.

#2 Green tea mobilizes fat from fat cells

Fat burning requires that fat should be broken down in the fat cells, and moved into the bloodstream. The active compounds in green tea help in this process, by enhancing the effects of some fat burning hormones.

The substances in green tea increases the levels of hormones that signal fat cells to break down more fat. This releases fat into the bloodstream, and makes it available as energy.

Related: Best Weight Loss Diet Tips Every Nutritionist Talks About

#3 Green tea improves exercise performance and effect

green tea for weight loss
Image source: Pixabay

Green tea has been shown to increase fat-burning, especially during exercise. In one study, men who took green tea extracts and exercised burned 17% more fat than men who didn’t take the supplement. This study suggests that green tea boosts fat-burning during exercise.

#4 Green tea boosts the metabolic rate, so you burn more calories

Our body is constantly burning calories – even when we sleep or rest. Several studies have suggested that green tea can help us burn more calories, by boosting our metabolic rate. So if you’re drinking green tea regularly, your metabolism will improve – so you end up burning more fat when at rest.

#5 Green helps you lose belly-fat

Belly-fat is the visceral fat that builds up around our organs. This fat causes inflammation and insulin resistance, both of which are linked to type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Several studies have suggested that green tea helps in loss of visceral fat.This will help in fight the stubborn belly-fat, and keep you free from risk of diabetes or heart disease.

Even though green tea has been shown to increase metabolic rate, and aid in fat-loss – the effects can vary from individual to individual. It is suggested that you combine a ritual of drinking green tea for weight loss, with an exercise regime for best results.

Read: Protein Superfoods For Weight Loss

 

8512644857_4d22032cc3_k-1024x929.jpg
April 20, 201700

Cardio is undoubtedly one of the best ways to get that summer body you’ve been wanting. But if you thought that running was all there is to cardio, then we’re here to tell you that it isn’t! First off, let’s start by understanding some basics.

What is cardio?

Cardio, short for “cardiovascular” is generally referred to for exercises that increase endurance of circulatory system. Any activity that gets your heart rate up to about 50-70% of your maximum heart rate, can be classified as cardio. Workouts that include cardio make your heart beat faster, pump more blood through your system which carries oxygen and nutrients to every cell.

How will cardio benefit you?

Cardio-workouts help you lose weight, are a great way to get some exercise for your heart (Which by the way, is like any other muscle that needs regular exercise) and help fight depression. Running, or any other higher-intensity activity releases endorphins or “happy hormones”, that enhance mood. Cardio-exercises also help you sleep better. And above all, it heightens your confidence.

What are the types of cardio?

Cardio-workouts can be broadly classified into two types:

Low-intensity

This range of exercises is for beginners, people with medical conditions, or elderlies. Generally these exercises last for longer duration of time, and enhance your body’s endurance for workouts without stressing the joints. Some of these low-intensity workouts are: Step aerobics, Jogging, Swimming, Biking, Rope skipping among many more

High-intensity

These set of exercises are for people who want to burn more fat, and fast. Also called High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), these workouts push your body out of its comfort zone, then ease it back into a comfortable state, and then repeat the same set with higher intensity after a short interval. These workouts are more challenging, some of them are: sprinting, Burpees, Tabata Squats, Elliptical

Related: The Best Workout Routine to Lose Fat Fast

 

So, how do you cardio your way to a hot summer body?

If you’re wondering how to get started with cardio-workouts to get that beach body, don’t worry. We’re giving you 3 easy, do-able ideas for cardio.

#1 Quick & Easy Cardio Blast

quickcardioworkout

Total time: 15 (Advanced) to 30 (beginner) minutes

All you have to do is speed up for the number of minutes or seconds listed for your level, then go at an easy pace for a minute or two to cool down. Repeat 8 times for a complete session. Don’t forget to warm up for 5 minutes before starting.

Level: Beginner

Sprint: 1 minute jog

Cool down: 2 minute walk

Level: Intermediate

Sprint: 30 second sprint

Cool down: 60-90 second walk

Level: Advanced

Sprint: 20 second running

Cool down: 60 second walk

This quick workout can be done using a treadmill, or without too.

#2 Reverse Cardio Workout

reverse

This workout can be done using the elliptical or indoor cycle, or a stairclimber. All you’ve got to do is start out faster than normal at a challenging level, and slow down every 3 minutes until you hit an easy pace. Pick your favourite tunes, and blast them at full-power while you do this workout to make it fun.

 

#3 Mix & Melt Cardio

mixnmelt

Walk, run or hop on the elliptical for a fat burning workout.

Total Time: 40 minutes

5 minutes: Warm up at an easy pace, reaching RPE 5

30 minutes: Complete eight 1-minute faster sprints (RPE 8 or 9) over 30 minutes, returning to RPE 6 between the bursts

5 minutes: Get on a steady comfortable RPE of 3

The workouts are best enjoyed with a steady blast of your favourite songs. So one way to get really motivated is to make a playlist for your workouts, and keep updating it with new songs every time you hit the gym. Remember to take it steady, and consult your fitness trainer before starting a new workout. Also, the right diet can play a big role in determining your overall success.

Read4 Easy Low Fat Diet Recipes to Help You Get That Summer Body

eyebrow-exercise3.jpeg
April 19, 201700

Exercise is any form of bodily activity that helps maintain physical fitness and enhances overall health and fitness. It provides you with varied benefits, such as increased growth and development, prevention of ageing, strengthening muscles and cardiovascular system, honing athletic skills, weight loss or maintenance, and it is a great stress buster.

Frequent or regular physical activity boosts the immune system and helps prevent diseases like cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and obesity. It also helps in fighting depression, and improves quality of sleep. It acts as a wonderful non-pharmaceutical way to aid sleep and fights insomnia. So clearly, exercise improves the overall quality of life. But did you also know that low intensity exercise can actually help boost your vision?

Studies show that exercise boosts vision

Yes, it’s true. Not only will exercise help you get into shape for the summer, it will also strengthen your eyesight. A recent study, whose findings appear in the Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience shows that low-intensity exercise boosts activation in the visual cortex, the part of the brain that plays an important role in processing visual information.

The researchers investigated how exercise affects the brain by strapping heart rate monitors to 18 participants.

They were then asked to complete an orientation task while on a stationary bicycle, Futurity reports. This was then repeated during low and high-intensity exercise and while at rest, the study shows. Information was then fed into a computer for the University of California, Santa Barbara researches to assess. They found that low intensity activity helps activate the visual cortex, which plays a role in processing what the eyes see.

According to study author Professor Barry Giesbrecht, increased activation or arousal changes how information is represented, and it’s much more selective. This is important to understand because how that information is used could potentially be different.

Related: Best Office Exercises for Good Health

 

It should be noted, however, that high intensity exercise often causes symptoms of blurry vision, as a result of low blood pressure, dehydration or even lack of nutrients. That’s why after you jog, you may experience slightly blurry eyesight. It’s important to seek medical advice to ensure that you don’t have a condition.

Low intensity or low impact workouts are easier on the body and are a great way to harness the benefits like vision-boosting.

Try these 5 low impact workouts:

exercise
Image source: Pixabay

Walking

Walking is a great stress-free way to get moving. If you find taking a stroll too easy, try going uphill or add weights to get that heart pumping

Elliptical

Ellipticals offer a great way to get the heart rate up, without causing too much stress on your legs. You could try spicing up your routine with a 20-minute interval workout which involves switching your speed between low, moderate and high every 2-3 minutes for 20 minutes, with a cool-down in the end.

Cycling

Cycling is a great way to get some low intensity exercise without stressing out the joints. And you needn’t signup for an indoor cycling class to get results.

Tai Chi

This gentle, fluid movement improves flexibility and may even ward off headaches. Try signing up for a Tai Chi class, and see for yourself!

Yoga

The ancient practice will have you to burn fat without feeling the pain. Besides added flexibility, improved sleep and weight loss, Yoga is also a great stress-buster. So add some downward dogs and half moons to your fitness routine. Or try aerial yoga to really take your practice to new heights

 

Try out these low intensity workouts and add them to your regular routine. The best way to exercise is to switch between high and low intensity workouts, so that your body doesn’t feel fatigued or stressed out.

Also Read: Benefits of Exercise Over Dieting: Find Out What Works

meal-2165637_1920-1024x768.jpg
April 18, 201700

The struggle to live healthy despite a time-stressed lifestyle, is real for all of us. Yet, being healthy doesn’t have to be difficult, or take up a lot of time. With so much information available on the internet today, you can easily find tips and tricks to get rid of that stubborn belly fat at the click of a button. But there’s a flipside too. Sometimes the information could be so much, that it is overwhelming. But we’re here to tell you not to worry, because we’re giving you some easy ways you could change your lifestyle for the better.

Diet is one of the most important elements of our lifestyle. A healthy diet, makes a healthy body. And if you’re trying to lose weight, you probably know already that only exercise without a tailored diet will not yield fast results. A low-fat diet, is recommended to get the maximum out of your weight-loss plan.

Low-fat diet: The basics

Fat is essential for controlling inflammation, blood clotting, brain development, energy, healthy skin and hair, and absorption of Vitamins A,D,E and K as per Medline Plus. Fat comes primarily in 3 forms:

  • Unsaturated fats
  • Saturated fats
  • Trans-fats

Unsaturated fats include fat from olive and vegetable oils, nuts, avocados and fish. Saturated and trans-fats are found in butter, lard, cream, margarine, partially hydrogenated oils, coconut and palm oil, chicken skin and fat from meat. Unsaturated fats are healthier than the other two types as they can actually help prevent heart disease.

Fat is high in calories, and consuming too many calories can cause weight gain and obesity. Obesity puts you at high risk of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, lover and kidney disease, stroke, immobility and problems breathing and sleeping. A low-fat diet can support a steady weight and prevent weight gain as it is lower in calories than a diet high on fat. A low-fat diet promotes weight loss and usually limits all types of fats as weight loss requires a reduction in total calories.

Related: Best Weight Loss Diet Tips Every Nutritionist Talks About

Low-fat diet recipes: An easy way to lose weight

We’re giving you 3 amazingly easy low-fat diet recipes, to help you get started on your weight loss journey. These recipes are great to serve to your family, for a healthier life.

#1 Oven-baked fish & chips

Give a healthy twist to a traditional favourite, by cooking in the oven instead of frying. Potatoes are great for vitamin C as well as B6, potassium and manganese

Prep time: 15 mins

Cook time: 40 mins

Serves 4

Non-vegetarian

Ingredients:

  • 880g/ 1lb 12 oz floury potato scrubbed and cut into chips
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 50g fresh breadcrumb
  • zest 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 4 x 140g/5oz thick sustainable white fish fillets
  • 200g/ 7oz cherry tomato

Method:

  1. Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Pat chips dry on kitchen paper, then lay in a single layer on a large baking tray. Drizzle with half the olive oil and season with salt. Cook for 40 mins, turning after 20 mins, so they cook evenly
  1. Mix the breadcrumbs with the lemon zest and parsley, then season well. Top the cod evenly with the breadcrumb mixture, then drizzle with the remaining oil. Put in a roasting tin with the cherry tomatoes, then bake in the oven for the final 10 mins of the chips’ cooking time

This recipe was originally published in Good Food magazine, February 2012

#2 Low-fat Roasties

low fat diet recipes
Image source: Pixabay

Indulge completely guilt-free with these roast potatoes – that have only 6g fat compared to the usual 14g!

Prep time: 10 mins

Cook time: 1 HR

Serves 2

Vegetarian

Ingredients:

  • 800g roasting potatoes, quartered
  • 1 garlic clove, sliced
  • 200 ml vegetable stock
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

Method:

Heat oven to 200C/fan 180C/gas 6. Put the potatoes and garlic in a roasting tin. Pour over the stock, then brush the tops of the potatoes with half the olive oil. Season, then cook for 50 mins. Brush with the remaining oil and cook 10-15 mins more until the stock is absorbed and the potatoes have browned and cooked properly

This recipe was originally published in Good Food magazine, February 2006

Also Read: Protein Superfoods For Weight Loss

#3 Mushroom & Thyme Risotto

Using a mixture of quinoa and rice makes this a healthy recipe, great for the family.

Prep time: 5 mins

Cook time: 25 mins

Serves 4

Vegetarian

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 350g chestnut mushroom, sliced
  • 100g quinoa
  • 1l hot vegetable stock
  • 175g risotto rice
  • handful thyme leaves
  • handful grated Parmesan or vegetarian alternative
  • 50g bag rocket to serve

Method:

  1. Heat the oil in a medium pan, sauté the mushrooms for 2-3 mins, then stir in the quinoa. Keeping the vegetable stock warm in a separate pan on a low heat, add a ladle of the stock and stir until absorbed. Stir in the rice and repeat again with the stock, until all the stock has been used up and the rice and quinoa are tender and cooked.
  2. Stir in the thyme leaves, then divide between 4 plates or bowls. Serve topped with grated Parmesan and rocket leaves

This recipe was originally published in Good Food magazine, September 2010

#4 Chicken salad & Miso brown rice

Low in fat, and a great source of iron, this Japanese-inspired meal is super-healthy!

Prep time: 15 mins

Cook time: 30 mins

Serves 2

Non-vegetarian

Ingredients:

  • 120g brown basmati rice
  • 2 skinless chicken breasts
  • 140g sprouting broccoli
  • 4 spring onions, cut into diagonal slices
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

For the dressing

  • 2 tsp miso paste
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp mirin
  • 1 tsp grated ginger

Method:

  1. Cook the rice following the pack instructions, then drain and keep warm. While it’s cooking, place the chicken breasts into a pan of boiling water so they are completely covered. Boil for 1 min, then turn off the heat, place a lid on and let sit for 15 mins. When cooked through, cut into slices.
  2. Boil the broccoli until tender. Drain, rinse under cold water and drain again.
  3. For the dressing, mix the miso, rice vinegar, mirin and ginger together.
  4. Divide the rice between two plates and scatter over the spring onions and sesame seeds. Place the broccoli and chicken slices on top. To finish, drizzle over the dressing.

This recipe was originally published in Good Food magazine, August 2010

We’re sure that with this easy low-fat diet recipes collection, your weight loss plans will yield positive results. For more recipes like this, keep watching this space!

Also Read: 9 Ways to Lose Weight Without Dieting

tea-1770415_1920-1024x768.jpg
April 18, 201700

Most tea-drinkers will vouch that tea is perhaps one of the most refreshing beverages around. Besides being a flavourful way to get more fluid into our body, it also has a number of other health benefits. Whether you have green or black tea, the kind of tea you have makes all the difference.

Tea (the non-herbal kind) is made from the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant. The leaves are processed, and the amount of processing time determines whether you end up with green, black or oolong tea. In addition to the leaves being withered, rolled and heated, black tea leaves are fermented before the final heating process.

Studies have shown that indulging in a cup or two of black tea, is a healthy lifestyle choice. Here’s 7 benefits of having black tea on a regular basis. It should be noted, that black tea should be taken as-is and without any additives like milk or sugar, to truly harness its benefits.

#1 Better Oral Health

Research has suggested that black tea reduces plaque formation as well as restricts bacteria growth that promotes the formation of cavities and tooth decays. The Polyphenols found in it kill cavity-causing bacteria and prevent the growth of bacterial enzymes that form the sticky material that binds plaque to our teeth

#2 A Healthy Heart

A study by Arab L. et al. called “Green and black tea consumption and risk of stroke: a meta-analysis” showed that people who consume 3 or more cups of tea had a 21% lower risk of a stroke than people who consume less than 1 cup of black or green tea per day.

Related: 7 Meal Replacement Smoothies

#3 Rich in Antioxidants

Black tea is rich in Polyphenols, that are antioxidants which block DNA damage caused by toxic chemicals like tobacco. These antioxidants are not found in fruits and vegetables and therefore, as a regular part of our diet, can form the basis of a healthy lifestyle.

#4 Stress Relief

Everyone knows the calming and soothing effects of black tea. Studies demonstrated that the amino acid L-theanine found in black tea helps you relax and concentrate better. It has also been shown to reduce cortisol levels when consumed in moderate amounts on a regular basis.

#5 Energy Boost

The low amounts of caffeine present in black tea enhances blood flow to the brain without over-stimulating the heart. It also stimulates the metabolism and respiratory system, as well as the heart and kidneys.

Other benefits of drinking black tea include a healthy digestive tract, and a better immune system. Drinking tea makes you happier and healthier, and we’re sure that this article will make you reach out for your cuppa. So indulge a little, it’s good for you!

Also Read: What Happens Inside Your Body When You Drink Soda

fresh-orange-juice-1614822_640.jpg
April 15, 201700

Juicing has become the latest trend in health & fitness, and we’re keeping a close watch on it. Juicing is used to lose weight and cleanse the body of toxins. It involves extracting juice from whole fruits and vegetables, by separating the fibre – something a juicer machine will be able to help you out with. A typical juice is made mostly from greens with other fruits and veggies added. It may have a blend of kale, green apples, broccoli, collard greens, spinach or coconut water.

According to Amy Zulpa, author of 50 Fat Busting Juicing Recipes, juicing helps lose weight but it also provides much needed vitamins and nutrients that you may skip out on otherwise. It can also act as a healthy meal replacement, is healthier for you than store bought juices, and can give your digestive system some much needed rest.

Besides all the above, juicing will help your body have a regulated colon, increase your energy, regulate your sleep patterns for the better, increase your mental focus, and give you a glowing complexion with healthy nails and hair.

Sounds good? Wait till you try it. Making your own juices is certainly worth a shot – and we’ve got you covered as far as the recipes go. Here’s 6 juices by Cassie Johnston of wholefully that you should try to get started.

#1 Green Goddess Juice

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Total Time: 3 minutes

Makes: 12 ounces

Ingredients

3 stalks of celery

½ large cucumber, cut into quarters

1 medium green apple, cut into eighths

1 medium pear, cut into eighths

Instructions

Juice all the ingredients following the instructions in your juicer manual for normal juicing. Drink immediately, or let chill for an hour and then drink.

Related: 8 Fat Loss Drinks That Can Help You Shed Pounds

 

#2 Ginger Zinger

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Total Time: 3 minutes

Makes: 12 ounces

Ingredients

2 medium apples, cut into eighths

5 carrots (no need to peel)

½ inch fresh ginger

¼ lemon (remove peel to avoid bitterness)

Instructions

Juice all the ingredients following the instructions in your juicer manual for normal juicing. Drink immediately, or let chill for an hour and then drink.

#3 Tropi-kale Juice

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Total Time: 3 minutes

Makes: 12 ounces

Ingredients

¼ of a fresh pineapple, skin and core removed, and cut into 1″ strips

4 kale leaves

1 ripe banana, peeled

Instructions

  1. Juice the pineapple and the kale following the instructions for normal juicing in your juicer manual.
  2. Switch your juicer strainer to the coarse one, and then juice the banana. Drink immediately, or let chill for an hour and then enjoy.

#4 Antioxidant blast

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Total Time: 3 minutes

Makes: 12 ounces

Ingredients

2 medium beets, cut into quarters and the greens

1 cup blueberries

1 cup halved, hulled strawberries

Instructions

Juice all the ingredients following the instructions in your juicer manual for normal juicing. Drink immediately, or let chill for an hour and then drink.

Also Read: Top 12 Healthy Foods You Should Eat Everyday

#5 Immune Booster

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Total Time: 3 minutes

Makes: 12 ounces

Ingredients

2 oranges, quartered (remove peel for less bitterness)

¼ lemon (remove peel for less bitterness)

1 medium apple, cut into eighths

½” fresh ginger

Instructions

Juice all the ingredients following the instructions in your juicer manual for normal juicing. Drink immediately, or let chill for an hour and then drink.

 

Exploring all of the different juicing recipes that you can find will be a lot of fun for the entire family. Many find their bliss making up their own recipes! Will you want to do this everyday? Maybe, maybe not. But, even if juicing is not for you- you’ll certainly not say no to some fresh-made juice from time to time. So give these recipes a try. You won’t be disappointed.


About us

The Fitness Cafe started out when a couple of guys set out on a fitness goal that many believed to be impossible. One of the founders lost 48lbs in one year and is on his way to completing his first half marathon!


CONTACT US