Friday, October 22, 2010

Learning to Eat Your Age

When you were a kid, you only ate when you were hungry. Everyone said you ate like a bird until you became a teenager. Then you couldn't eat enough. By the time you hit your 30s you stopped listening to your stomach and started listening to your eyes. But you were working out enough to keep off unwanted pounds. But now you're starting to see the effects of eating too many calories.
So how can you avoid age-related weight gain? By keeping these three age-appropriate tips in mind the next time you decide to grab your favorite fattening treat.

1. Age Changes Everything

You may feel like a teenager, but when you're out of your teens and into your 20s, 30s, 40s, and beyond, your body tells a different story. Whether you'll admit it or not, you realize that you can't move quite as quick in your 50s as you could in your 20s. Likewise, your body can't burn through calories like it could a few years ago. With that in mind, the need to curb your calorie intake as you age makes sense. Because if your body can't use all the calories you're eating, consuming excessive calories only leads to excessive weight.

2. Activity Takes More Effort

When you were a kid, getting out and about for a two-hour game of neighborhood football was no problem. Ever since you started working at an office, stuck behind a large oak desk, getting physical activity has become more and more difficult. Thanks to this increased difficulty of getting a work out, your body's metabolism has dropped dramatically since your skinny high school days. Ideally, you should get at least 30 to 60 minutes of exercise five days a week. Since this isn't always possible, you'll need to chop even more calories from your diet to make sure the calories you eat are being used rather than stored as fat.

3. You Have to Cut

Regardless of how much exercise you get, you'll probably need to reduce the amount of calories you consume as you age. A good guide to help you understand your calorie need is to start with 1,800 calories for women age 31 to 50 and 2,200 for men of the same age. If you're younger than 31, add another 200 calories. The over 50 crowd should subtract 200.
With certain levels of activity, you can also add calories to your diet. However, since every person's caloric needs are different at every stage in life, you should consult with your physician before making any minor or major changes in your diet. To get a more precise idea of how many calories you should eat each day, a number of calorie calculators are available on the Internet. Using your age, height, weight, gender, and level of activity, these calculators help you have an idea of how many calories it will take for you to maintain a healthy weight. If you find the amount of calories you're eating isn't helping you meet your weight goals, modify your diet as needed.
Along with all those healthy calories that you chow down on each day, you may be wondering how many of the delectable and not-so-healthy calories you can eat on a daily basis.
An easy way to keep your bad calorie consumption in check is to "allow" yourself to have some. However, make sure that no more than one-eighth of your daily calories come from foods that offer no nutritional value. This includes cookies and cakes, potato chips and bonbons, and those sugar-filled drinks that you can't live without in the morning and afternoon.
Until next time, continue to - Live Life Well,
John Aaron Villarreal

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

What's Red and Embarrassing?

Give up? It's acne. But are you armed with the right tools to fight it off? They're bumpy, red splotches on your picture-perfect skin. But you don't have to put up with them anymore! Or do you? If you are not sure what to believe about acne and what it takes to get rid of it for good, you're not alone. The good news is you won't be in the dark for much longer.
Think back on all the chocolate you didn't eat in an effort to avoid unsightly acne? Didn't help, did it? That's because foods such as chocolate, pizza, and fried chicken don't put your skin at increased risk for acne. Granted, these foods aren't always the best choice for your overall health, but they're not going to give you a pepperoni face. So what causes it? Good question.
Sadly, there isn't one factor that causes every pimple on every face. However, the process for every zit is the same. First, the body's oil glands kick into gear. As you probably guessed, this usually happens during puberty. Occasionally, cells on the surface of your skin keep the oil from getting out. This causes bacteria your body is already housing to multiply and inflame nearby tissues, causing a pimple or other skin issues.
Don't think acne is a problem worth giving the time of day? You could be painfully wrong. If you allow acne to attack your skin without doing anything to remedy the problem, you could find yourself faced with acne scars that stay with you the rest of your life.
For most people, acne scars aren't a threat. But for a few, acne scars are a disturbing problem. Most likely to get acne scars are those with recurrent bouts of large amounts of acne. While the scars may become less noticeable over time, they can maintain their size, shape, and coloring throughout life.
In most cases, over-the-counter acne products are strong enough to help you fend against an acne attack. One of the products used most often is benzoyl peroxide lotion, which is easy to use and can be picked up at practically any drug or grocery store. If your parents suffered severe acne and scarring or you find yourself avoiding social situations because of your acne - despite regular use of over-the-counter medications - you should consider speaking with your physician or a dermatologist about further treatment.
Following over-the-counter medications, your physician will likely turn to a few different options. The first is topical lotion infused with medication, such as antibiotics. If this doesn't work, oral antibiotics and a topical lotion full of vitamin A and an antibiotic may be tried. As a final resort, a powerful medication known as an oral retinoid may be prescribed. Since this can have severe side effects, you may prefer to deal with the acne.
If you're not sure what to do about your acne, consult your physician. And, if you are thinking about going to a dermatologist for some expensive acne treatment, you may want to wait. According to experts, there is no reason to have your acne treated unless it is severe and is already producing scars.
However, don't let the experts' advice prevent you from getting the skin you want. If your acne is keeping you from socializing and enjoying life or is causing you to feel depressed about yourself, seeking medical assistance is fine. Most acne treatments are very mild and have few potential side effects, so there is no reason to shy away from a little personal attention to your skin.
Until next time - Live Life Well,
John Aaron Villarreal

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

A Diet for Your Blood

Should your eating habits be based on the red stuff running through your veins?

There's a diet if you're tall, a diet if you're short, a diet if you're fat, a diet if you're not too fat, and now, there's a diet based on your blood type. But is this bloody diet worth its weight in plasma or will it go the way of so many other overnight sensations? Read on to get the inside scoop on the diet that will have you seeing red.

At the heart of the Blood Type Diet is a belief that your blood holds the key to what you should eat. Created by Dr. Peter J. D'Adamo, the diet boils down to a few key eating habits, which are based on your blood type. Of course, like any smart diet, the Blood Type Diet also leans heavily on exercise and gives advice on which exercises suit your blood best.

If you've got Type A Blood, the Blood Type Diet insists your body will respond best to a vegetarian diet. Since you're more likely to wind up with cancer, diabetes, and heart disease, you'll want to take trips to the gym regularly, but try sticking with yoga, tai chi, and other slow-moving and relaxing exercises.

Type B Blood, on the other hand, can handle most any food that comes its way, as long as it is eaten in moderation. For some reason, Type B Blood resists most of the small and large diseases that plague other blood types, and a moderate exercise regiment with exercises such as cycling, tennis, and hiking will keep you healthy.

In the event you have Type AB Blood, you'll want to pick and choose your exercises from both of the groups mentioned above. As far as dietary guidance, you can enjoy vegetables and meats of nearly all kinds, but you may need to avoid chicken.

Type O Blood requires a regular ingestion of animal proteins. These are most easily obtained through eating meats. But you should be careful to avoid wheat, cabbage, and corn, as they can cause you to gain weight. If you have Type O blood, the Blood Type Diet also suggests you get plenty of intense physical exercise, such as running, karate, and participation in contact sports.

As intriguing as it may be to have a diet and exercise routine built around the kind of blood in your veins, there isn't a clear consensus in the medical community that the Blood Type Diet works. Quite the contrary. Many experts say it can put your body in harm's way.

According to the Mayo Clinic, there isn't a shred of scientific proof that backs up the claim that a Blood Type Diet helps people live healthier lives. If there is any weight loss achieved during the Blood Type Diet, it is likely due to you not getting enough of the nutrients that are necessary for optimal performance, while increasing your physical activity at the same time. So there may be some weight loss, but it isn't safe or long-lasting weight loss.

Now that the wind has been knocked out of your sails over the Blood Type Diet, you may be hungering for another great diet to come your way. Something that will invigorate you and keep you going strong, while helping you lose weight and look better every day.

Here's the best option. Instead of looking for another fad diet, eat a balanced diet full of fruits and vegetables and get plenty of exercise a few times a week. Want something a little more specific? Contact me for a personalized fitness plan.

Until then - Live Life Well,

John Aaron Villarreal

Monday, October 11, 2010

12 Safety Tips for a Happy Halloween

If your little ghost, goblin, witch, or fairy is planning to head out for a trick-or-treat adventure this season, be sure he or she knows that safety always come first - no matter how cool your son or daughter's costume may be. Here are a few hip tips to instill in your trick-or-treaters this Halloween.
Halloween should be a fun time for your children, but it's up to you to keep it that way. Fortunately, all it takes is a little common sense to keep your trick-or-treaters healthy and safe for years to come. Encourage your children to have a spookily safe Halloween with these tips.
• Look for a costume that doesn't drag on the ground. This way, your child won't trip and fall when wearing his or her new identity. Also, ask your child to wear his or her own shoes, since another person's shoes (especially if they're too big) can create a tripping hazard.
• Remind your children that cars always have the right-of-way on the street. Therefore, trick-or-treaters always need to look both ways before crossing the street. As it only takes a second for a car to come around a corner, spending an extra moment to ensure cars aren't coming may make the difference between safety and grave danger.
• Only cross the street at the corner.
• Never hide or try to cross the road between parked cars.
• Wear light-colored clothing or attach reflective strips so your child is more visible in the dark. Also, be sure to make costume accents like bikes, skateboards, or brooms visible with reflective tape, too.
• Make sure that all scarves or hats are tied and fit appropriately so they do not slip down over your child's eyes.
• All swords, knives, or similar costume accessories should be flexible.
• If your children go trick-or-treating with friends, be sure they plan a route and tell you where they are going and when they plan to be back. Also, take advantage of technology by asking your kids to carry a cell phone if possible. Make sure your child knows how to call 911 and what situations may require that call to be made.
• Encourage your child to carry a flashlight.
• Look for costumes that are marked as flame retardant. However, remind your child that costumes can be flammable and they should avoid getting too close to fires or candles.
• Only visit homes with porch lights on. Do not go up to houses alone.
• Accept treats at the door but never go into a stranger's house.
• Opt for face paint rather than masks that can cover your child's eyes and make it hard for him or her to see. If a mask is a must with your child's costume, make sure the eye holes are big enough to see out of adequately.
• Always use caution around animals and strangers you don't know. Do not give anyone you do not know any personal information about you.
• Encourage your children to wait until getting home to eat any of the candy collected. That way you can go over it together and pick out anything that has a broken seal or looks like it has been tampered with in any way. Most communities also offer free candy screenings at fire and police departments.
Until next time, have a safe and very Happy Halloween. And, remember to
Live Life Well,
John Aaron Villarreal