Health

"7 Foods You Had No Idea Were Loaded With Sugar" Review

These foods may have more sugar than you think. I always tell my personal training clients in Chicago to think twice about these items before tossing them in the cart (Source: 7 Foods You Had No Idea Were Loaded With Sugar).

WHOLE-GRAIN BREAD


The danger with eating foods high in sugar stems from their effects on blood sugar, says Perlmutter. "Foods are rated in terms of how they elevate blood sugar by their glycemic index," he explains. "The higher the glycemic index, the higher the blood sugar elevation and the length of time the blood sugar will remain elevated." When those levels skyrocket, it can lead to health complications like heart disease and diabetes. So while it's still better to opt for the whole-grain version of bread over the white variety, you don't want to chow down on sandwich after sandwich—it clocks a 71 on the glycemic index, while a Snicker's candy bar, shockingly, has a lower rating of 51, according to the Harvard School of Medicine.

Related Reading: "4 Weird Reasons Why You're Gaining Weight" Review

BALSAMIC VINEGAR


"Creamy dressings often create a high sugar impact, but balsamic can contain just as much," says JJ Virgin, celebrity nutritionist and author of JJ Virgin's Sugar Impact Diet. The reason: A lot of American-made balsamic vinegar is made with caramel coloring and cornstarch—two sugary substances—with the vinegar base being white wine vinegar. Why? The authentic, Italian versions require a 12- to 25-year aging process that negates the need for coloring and thickening additives, but not everyone wants to pay—or wait—for those products to be imported over. So if you're ordering a salad in a restaurant, Virgin advises against their version of balsamic. "Instead, ask for extra-virgin olive oil and red wine vinegar for all the flavor without the sugar impact."

Related Reading: "You Won't Believe What's in These Girl Scout Cookies!" Review

OATMEAL


Here's the good news: Not all oatmeal is on the too-much-sugar list. But those who rely on the take-along pouches (or have an aversion to waiting for a pot to boil) are most likely beginning their day with a serious blood sugar kick. "It seems like most everyone agrees that oatmeal is a good choice for breakfast," says Perlmutter. But in actuality, many instant packets contain 13 grams or more of the sweet stuff because of all the additional flavorings (think maple and brown sugar, apples and cinnamon). If you've got the time, opt for steel-cut oats for a higher dose of fiber. Otherwise, you can still choose the quick-cooking variety, just grab the plain packet and add a dollop of almond butter—which research shows can help stabilize blood sugar throughout the day—for flavor, protein, and healthy fats.

Related Reading: "The #1 Worst Menu Option at 40 Popular Restaurants" Review

GLUTEN-FREE FOOD


Hyman refers to this group—the one with gluten-free cookies, cakes, and processed food—as junk food. "Just because it's gluten-free doesn't mean it's healthy," he says. "Gluten-free cakes and cookies are still cakes and cookies," which means they're made with sugar. In fact, most contain excess sugars and gum to make up for the missing ingredients, and those are even more difficult for the body to break down. When you're craving something sweet, but still want to follow a low- or gluten-free plan, Hyman suggests playing with natural fruit instead. Grilling or broiling stone fruit, like peaches and plums, will bring its natural sugars to the forefront, giving you that sweet bite sans sugar crash.

Related Reading:"50 Unhealthiest Foods On the Planet" Review

FRUIT JUICE


Bummer: One of the most popular breakfast drinks in America isn't doing wonders for your waist. "A 12-ounce glass of orange juice contains about 36 grams, or seven teaspoons, of sugar," says Perlmutter. "Almost all fruit juices are concentrated sources of sugar" because they strip the fiber out of the fruit when it's sent through a juicer. Now, it probably won't kill you if you sip a 4-oz. glass of juice in the a.m. (and you're still getting a dose of healthy veggies if you grab a green juice), but it is something you need to keep track of so you don't go overboard throughout the day. Because doing so—like drinking a glass at breakfast, a green juice after your workout, and a soda in the afternoon—can send sugar directly to the liver, says Hyman. "It turns off a fat storage machine, which can lead to dangerous belly fat. [These juices] also don't help you feel full, so you end up eating more all day and craving more sugar and carbs," propelling you into that sugar-cycle that's hard to break.

Related Reading: "11 Foods to Toss Out of Your Kitchen For Good" Review

YOGURT


Yes, even though Greek yogurt is a fabulous source of protein, calcium, and probiotics, not all varieties are created equal. Some contain naturally occurring sugars, while others—those with fruit on the bottom, dessert-like flavorings, or mix-in nuts, for example—have extra doses added. The American Heart Association recommends women only eat 30 grams of sugar a day, but some of these contain 24 grams or more per serving—meaning you could be downing your entire sugar quota at breakfast. But all this doesn't mean we want you skipping out on those healthy benefits we mentioned before. Just think simple—or plain—when it comes to yogurt, and forego the extra flavorings. If it's too tart for your taste, stir in fresh fruit for a natural hit of sweetness.

Related Reading: "The #1 Worst Menu Option at 40 Popular Restaurants" Review

DIET FOODS


Many foods labeled as a "diet" product, like 100-calorie snacks and desserts, are anything but because of their fake sugar content, says Hyman. "We're surrounded by low-calorie, 'health-conscious foods' and diet soft drinks that contain sweeteners," he says. "As a result, the number of Americans who eat products that contain sugar-free sweeteners grew from 70 million in 1987 to 160 million in 2000. At the same time, obesity in the United States has doubled from 15 to 30 percent." That's because the sugar substitutes, such as aspartame, acesulfame, saccharin, and sucralose, confuse your body. Research shows that these non-calorie, sugar-like imitations increase appetite and interrupt the body's ability to regulate blood sugar, which causes a metabolic change that could lead to diabetes. "If you have a desire for something sweet, it's better to have real, naturally-occurring sugar than the imitation stuff in 'fake foods." In other words, grab that big bowl of fresh, delicious fruit and enjoy.

Related Reading: "11 Diet Foods that Make You Fat" Review

The hidden sugar amounts in these food have affected the weight loss results for my personal trainer clients in Chicago. How does your grocery list affect your success?

Pictures Credit:
MSN.com-Is whole grain bread loaded with sugar?

More to Read:
While many foods are still healthy with proper portion control, you may want to avoid the following list: "50 Foods You Should Never Eat" Review.

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Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness with excerpt sourced from the article " 7 Foods You Had No Idea Were Loaded With Sugar " on MSN.com.
"7 Foods You Had No Idea Were Loaded With Sugar" Review
Learn how to lose weight from a Chicago personal trainer.
 
Transform your life with Michael's  self-help book   Redefine Yourself here !

Transform your life with Michael's self-help book Redefine Yourself here!

 

"20 Easy Ways to Cut 500 Calories A Day" Review

My personal training clients are always looking for quick ways to shave off easy calories each day. I chose the top 15 from the recent article 20 Easy Ways to Cut 500 Calories A Day.

1. HAVE YOUR SANDWICH ON A SALAD.


Two big slices of bread with mayo can tally up to 550 calories.

2. SKIP THE HAPPY HOUR MARGARITA.


Chains that serve margaritas in 18-ounce glasses are tacking on roughly 800 calories. That's more than a meal's worth of calories.

Moody Wisdom: Need an alcohol substitute for your margarita? Check out "How To Fit Alcohol in Your Diet without Ruining Your Weight Loss Goals".

3. OPT FOR BLACK.


A grande latte with no added sugar has 220 calories, while a cup of black coffee has two. If you typically drink two cups with some sweetener, you're saving at least 500 calories when you switch to black, says Platkin.

Moody Wisdom: Not sure if you should change your coffee choice? You'll need to read "20 Coffee Drinks with More Sugar Than a Can of Coke".

4. WHILE YOU'RE AT IT, TRY A COLD BREW ICED COFFEE.


You'll save about 405 calories over a Starbucks Grande Mocha Frappuccino.

5. CHEW SLOWER.


Chewing each bite twice as much as you normally do allows you to feel fuller on less food. Research suggests you can reduce what you eat at each meal by 100 to 120 calories (eliminating nearly 400 calories) and you can be satisfied on smaller snacks this way, as well.

6. QUENCH YOUR THIRST WITH WATER AND A LEMON SQUEEZE INSTEAD OF SODA.


You'll save nearly 200 calories for every cola you skip. Swap out three drinks a day, and you'll easily clear 500 calories.

Moody Wisdom: Can't kick the habit? "70 Most Popular Sodas Ranked by How Toxic They Are" Review may motivate you.

7. COOK YOUR MEALS AT HOME.


A 2014 study found that people who cooked dinner at home consumed about 140 fewer calories than people who typically ordered in, dined out, or heated up pre-made meals. Make your own breakfast and lunch and you'll be nearing that 500-calorie deficit.

8. DON'T SIT STILL.


A Mayo Clinic study found that people who fidgeted throughout the day burned 350 more calories than their sedentary counterparts. Head out for a stroll during your lunch hour to burn an additional 150 calories.

Moody Wisdom: The key idea here is movement (you don't have to fidget all day).

9. ASK YOUR WAITER TO BOX UP HALF YOUR MEAL BEFORE IT GETS TO THE TABLE.


You'll save about 750 calories on average, according to a new study. Researchers found that a typical meal at an American, Italian, or Chinese restaurant contains nearly 1,500 calories, which is far more than anyone needs at one meal.

10. SWAP PRIME RIB FOR SIRLOIN.


You'll cut about 700 calories. A 16-ounce prime rib at a restaurant has about 1,400 calories. A sirloin steak, on the other hand, is only 700. For even bigger savings, chose filet mignon. Typically, it's nine ounces and just 450 calories.

Moody Wisdom: Don't forget that this suggestion doesn't necessarily mean that a filet mignon is healthy...it's just a better choice in terms of calories.

11. PUT YOUR FORK DOWN BETWEEN BITES.


Slowing your pace at meals allows you to eat up to 300 fewer calories a meal, according to a study in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association. In 24 hours, your savings will be well over 500 calories.

12. GET 7 TO 8 HOURS OF SLEEP.


You'll cut at least 300 calories. Research shows that sleep deprivation slows our metabolic rate and increases our appetite for sweets. One study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that people who slept four hours per night consumed 300 more calories than people who slept a normal amount. Well-rested folks are also much more likely to exercise, and even a short workout can burn 200 calories.

Moody Wisdom: Having trouble sleeping? Read "11 Ways To Sleep Better Tonight".

13. DON'T DIP YOUR BREAD IN OLIVE OIL.


Just a few slices will adds up to more than 500 calories—and it won't put much of a dent in your hunger. As a condiment, it mostly adds calories. Instead, avoid the bread plate altogether.

Moody Wisdom: The calories from olive oil are mostly fat...not ideal for a slim waistline. Also, it's highly processed and nutrient stripped. If you need more healthy fat, find it in a "whole form" like an avocado.

14. MIX UP YOUR WALKS.


A study in Biology Letters found that adding short, fast bursts to your walks will burn up to 20 percent more calories, even over speed walking. That means an hour-long walk could easily burn an extra 90 to 120 calories. Exposing yourself to cold air also burns extra calories by making the body more sensitive to the hunger hormone leptin. Study participants who spent three hours of the day exposed to cold burned 250 extra calories.

15. DON'T TOUCH THE CHIPS AND SALSA.


Those deep-fried salty chips at your favorite Mexican restaurant offer little nutritional benefit. One basket of them packs a 645-calorie punch. The balance of salt and satisfying crunch also makes it nearly impossible to stop noshing.

16. EAT MUSHROOMS INSTEAD OF MEAT.


In a Johns Hopkins study, people who substituted mushrooms for red meat ate 444 fewer calories, enjoyed their meal just as much, and felt just as full. The only thing missing? The calories.

17. PUT AWAY YOUR PHONE DURING LUNCH.


People who looked at their phone during lunch, whether to peruse social media or to lose themselves in Candy Crush, tended to not remember their meal well, feel less full, and snack more in the afternoon. Plus, they ate about 200 more calories a day, according to a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Taking some time to clear your mind during will also save calories. Stress ramps up your fat-storing hormones and often leads to bad food choices. In a study of women over 50, those who felt stressed during the previous 24 hours took in 104 more calories than relaxed women did.

How do you cut calories while meeting with a personal trainer in Chicago?

Are you having trouble losing weight? Read "50 Unhealthiest Foods on the Planet" Review. It's probably time to rewrite your grocery list.

Picture Credit: MSN.com-To dip or not to dip? That is the weight loss question.

Article Credit:
Author: Michael Moody Fitness with excerpt sourced from the article " 20 Easy Ways to Cut 500 Calories A Day " on MSN.com.
" 20 Easy Ways to Cut 500 Calories A Day" Review
Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago.
 
Find Michael's  self help book here !

Find Michael's self help book here!

 

"12 Workout Myths That Just Need To Die" Review

You may have been taking the wrong approach to fitness up to this point....and here are the reasons why. (from the article 12 Workout Myths That Just Need To Die).

Myth #1: Strength training will make you bulk up.


Truth: It’s pretty hard for women to bulk up from a normal strength-training routine because they don’t have as much testosterone as men (the difference in this hormone level makes men more prone to bulking up). In fact, if weight loss is your goal, strength training can actually help you lean out, but you have to keep your nutrition in check, too. “Muscle is metabolically active,” explains Adam Rosante, C.S.C.S., author of The 30-Second Body. Simply maintaining lean muscle mass requires higher energy, he explains. “So, the more lean muscle you have, the more calories your body will burn at rest.” #Science .

Myth #2: You can focus on losing fat from certain body parts.


Truth: Spot-training is not a thing. “Fat cells are distributed across your entire body,” says Rosante. “If you want to lose fat from a specific spot, you need to lose overall body fat.”High-intensity interval training can work wonders—after an intense workout, your body needs to take in oxygen at a higher rate to help it return to its natural resting state.

This process requires the body to work harder, burning more calories in the process. Incorporating strength training can help you hit your goals too, since having more lean muscle will help your body burn more calories at rest.

Myth #3: Doing lots of cardio is the best way to lose weight.


Truth: If your goal is weight loss, logging endless miles on the treadmill isn’t always the best approach. Yes, traditional cardio workouts will help create a day-to-day calorie deficit (in addition to a healthy diet), which is essential for losing weight. But in the long-term, since having more lean muscle mass helps your body burn more calories at rest, you’ll be adding to this deficit without doing a thing.

A combination of both high-intensity cardio and strength training is a good idea. And don’t forget, when it comes to weight loss, having a smart nutrition plan is key.

Moody Wisdom: If you are serious about making these changes in your weight loss routine, you'll want to also read 15 Reasons You're Not Getting Results in the Gym.

Myth #4: Not feeling sore means you didn’t get a good workout.


Truth: While soreness and workout intensity are sometimes connected, how tired your muscles feel isn’t always a good indicator of a solid sweat session. “Being sore doesn’t necessarily mean it was a great workout—it just means that a significant amount of stress was applied to the tissue,” says exercise physiologist and trainer Pete McCall, M.S., C.S.C.S., host of the All About Fitness podcast.

“You can have a great workout and not be sore the next day,” he says. Proper recovery will help prevent achy muscles. “Refuel within the first 30 to 45 minutes post-exercise, stay hydrated, and get enough sleep—all of these things can help boost recovery and minimize soreness.”

Myth #5: You should give 100 percent effort during every workout.


Truth: Sort of. You should try your best to stay focused, be present, and give 100 percent during every workout. But not every gym session should require a balls-to-the-wall level of intensity. And if you are sore everyday, that may be a sign that you’re going too hard. “It’s not a good idea to exercise at too high of an intensity too frequently—it limits recovery and can lead to overtraining,” says McCall.

Ideally, to avoid putting too much stress on your body, you should only be going extra hard two to three times per week.

Moody Wisdom: You can still challenge yourself....just don't reach your anaerobic threshold every time (think: 160 heartrate and up for most).

Myth #6: Strength training means using machines and heavy weights.


Truth: Strength training means using resistance to work your muscles—and that resistance doesn’t necessarily have to come from a machine or a heavy weight. (Hello, killer bodyweight exercises!) Aside from your own bodyweight, you can also use tools like kettlebells, medicine balls, and resistance bands to add resistance.

Myth #7: Sweating a ton means you worked your butt off.


Truth: Not necessarily. “You sweat because your core temperature increases,” explains exercise physiologist Tracy Hafen, founder of Affirmative Fitness. Yes, your muscles create heat when you exercise so a tough workout will increase your internal temp, she explains, but it also has to do with the temperature you’re working out in. “For example, you’re not going to sweat as much in 40-degree weather as you would in 80-degree weather,” Hafen explains.

The humidity in the air also plays a role. “It’s not sweating that cools you off, it’s the evaporation [of sweat]. You’ll feel like you’re sweating more when it’s humid because sweat can’t evaporate.” (This is also a reason to be careful exercising in hot, humid climates, because your body temperature will keep increasing.)

Myth #8: Crunches are a great exercise for your abs.


Truth: Meh. Crunches probably aren’t going to hurt your core strength, but they’re not the most efficient exercise you can do to strengthen your midsection. “Your ab muscles are designed to work most effectively when you’re standing upright,” says McCall. Of course, there are plenty of great abs exercises that aren’t completely upright.

Moody Wisdom: Crunches will strengthen your rectus abs (upper abs) while igniting your transverse abs (lower abs) to maintain stability. Ideally, it's only a fraction of your core approach. Read 4 Simple Ways to Flatten Your Stomach for a well-rounded plan.

Myth #9: You have to do at least 20 minutes of cardio to make it worth your while.


Truth: You can get an amazing cardio workout in less time by utilizing high-intensity interval training. “High-intensity cardio challenges the respiratory system to work efficiently to deliver oxygen to working muscles,” says McCall. “If the system is stressed hard enough, it doesn’t require a lengthy workout for results.” Plus, high-intensity training creates an afterburn effect, meaning you continue burning calories after you’re done. One approach isTabata, or 20 seconds of hard work, 10 seconds of rest for eight rounds total, which adds up to a four-minute routine.

Moody Wisdom: Too long could be too much stress on the system as a whole. Aim for a shorter cardio session with more substance (and intervals).

Myth #10: You need to stretch before a workout.


Truth: While it’s true that you shouldn’t just jump right into a workout, dynamic warm-ups are where it’s at—you can save those static stretches for afterwards.

“Your pre-workout goal should be to improve mobility and elasticity in the muscles,” says Rosante. This is best done with foam rolling and a dynamic warm-up, where you keep your body moving (instead of holding stretches still). This preps your body for work and helps increase your range of motion, which means you can get deeper into exercises (and strengthen more of those ~muscles~).

Moody Wisdom: The purpose of a warm-up is to: 1.) Increase blood circulation to the muscles and 2.) Increase your range of motion in preparation of movement. Although running may accomplish #1, you may be forcing your range of motion with each stride...and tearing the muscle as a result. The body will respond by shortening your range of motion for proper repair. Instead, focus on achieving the necessary range of motion through a series of slow and controlled movements that will activate the muscle (think: a plank, squat, lunge, etc).

Myth #11: Yoga isn’t a “real” workout.


Truth: “People who write off yoga probably have an image of yoga as series of gentle stretches—they clearly haven’t taken a tough yoga class,” says Rosante. “The first time I took one was at Jivamukti Yoga Center, and was a radically humbling experience. It’s been one of the best additions to my routine, both for my body and mind.”

While there are some blissfully relaxing yoga classes out there, tougher types (like Bikram and power Vinyasa yoga) can definitely leave you sweaty, sore, and satisfied.

Moody Wisdom: Yoga is great but....don't force the motion or pose. Only position yourself within your range of motion. Anything beyond could cause more harm than good (see the explanation above).

Myth #12: You should work out every day.


Truth: Definitely not true—hallelujah! When you work out, you’re breaking down muscle fibers so they can rebuild stronger. However, to do this, you need to give your body time to recover from working out. Aim for one to do days per week of active recovery rest days—that means doing something that doesn’t put stress on your body, like gentle stretching or a walk. So, you’re definitely off the hook for that seven-days-a-week workout plan.

Moody Wisdom: Movement is required every day for a healthy lifestyle. It doesn't have to be a full-court basketball game, though. Your body needs recovery...give it the rest it needs with less stressful movement like walking.

What other workout myths do you think need to die?

Are you having trouble losing weight? Read "50 Unhealthiest Foods on the Planet" Review. It's probably time to rewrite your grocery list.

Picture Credit: MSN.com-Is running the best way to lose weight?

Article Credit:
Author: Michael Moody Fitness with excerpt sourced from the article " 12 Workout Myths That Just Need To Die " on MSN.com.
"12 Workout Myths That Just Need To Die" Review
Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago.
 
Find Michael's self-help book Redefine Yourself on  Amazon  today!

Find Michael's self-help book Redefine Yourself on Amazon today!

 

"The 21 Worst Things You Can Do For Your Body" Review

Whether you're trying to lose weight with a personal trainer in Chicago or scaling the mountains of Colorado, you need a solid foundation of health. Unfortunately, bad habits, misleading advice, and false advertising most likely compromised your most sacred temple up to this point. Take a look at this list and redefine how you approach life physically, mentally, and emotionally (from the recent msn.com article "The 21 Worst Things You Can Do For Your Body")!

1. NOT ALLOWING PROPER RECOVERY


Congratulations on exercising regularly. But you may be sabotaging this healthy habit by “not eating correctly after a workout to restore nutrients and build muscle,” Rentz says. You also need to sleep enough, “allowing the body to repair and rebuild.” Recovery is crucial and you must not neglect it. You risk serious and painful injuries. Just remember as you exercise that Rome wasn’t built in a day.

2. NOT GETTING ENOUGH SLEEP


Rentz admits she is guilty of this bad practice. “There are only so many hours in the day, and my workout in the morning robs me of additional sleep that could be beneficial to me long term,” she says. Sleep deprivation is very harmful to the body. It can cause your brain to shrink, lead you to eat more, and increase your blood pressure. Also, driving while sleepy and tired is a bad idea, as it makes your reactions three times slower. Need help changing your sleep habits? Check out the tricks in the article Improving Your Sleep.

3. OVERTRAINING


Yes, it is possible to have too much of a good thing, and working out more than what your body can handle is highly detrimental. “You aren’t able to complete your normal routine; you find that you may just be going through the motions with your workout,” Rentz says. “In addition, you may feel sluggish and cloudy headed for the rest of the day. Finally, you start to crave comfort foods, filled with sugary, high carbohydrates, and begin to overeat,” she adds. And if that’s not enough, exercising too much won’t get you the results because your body is overstressed and didn’t have time to recover.

4. RELYING TOO MUCH ON WEIGHT MACHINES


By using weight machines too often, you’re not using your own body weight to mimic motions that you do throughout the day, Rentz says. That is not helping your body function better. This is also another reason why some doctors don’t recommend seated machine-based exercises. So next time you hit the gym, don’t even look at the squat machine and do lunges with dumbbell weights in your hands instead.

5. DRINKING YOUR CALORIES


“Most things in life are fine in moderation,” Rentz says. “However, if counting calories is part of your routine, monitor your cocktail intake to 1x/day, noting that sugary cocktails are really high in calories,” she adds. Ounce for ounce, alcohol has about 100 calories. “So it’s the mixes that add the extra sugar, which can lead to weight gain in the long-term.”

6. CONSUMING SUGAR


“[Sugar] leads to weight gain, tooth decay, and so many health problems (hypertension and diabetes, just to name a few)," Rentz says. It’s the one thing she’d tell her clients to avoid at all costs. “Most consume approximately 22 teaspoons a day when we should aim for 6-9 spoons a day,” she says. “Read nutritional labels to make information clear on consumption, and limit soft drinks to a very special occasion.” You might be suprised by the amount of sugar in your coffee after reading 20 Coffee Drinks with More Sugar Than a Can of Coke.

7. EATING FRENCH FRIES


French fries are the second thing Rentz would advise people to steer clear of. They make you tired and sluggish, fat, and put you at risk for heart disease and diabetes, according to studies. A small serving of fries has about 300 calories, mostly coming from fat. The fact that they are usually dipped in corn oil, the worst kind, makes matters even worse. Also, fries have a lot of high glycemic carbs, which result in insulin spikes.

8. NOT STAYING HYDRATED (IT’S NOT JUST WATER!)


Drink enough water; it’s that simple. It helps rid the body of waste and toxins, transports oxygen and nutrients to the muscles, and protects every organ. A good tip to know how much water to drink, Rentz says, is to take your body weight in pounds and divide in half. “That’s approximately how many ounces of water you should consume a day.”

Plain water can be boring, so think of alternatives to stay hydrated. “Some beverages can hydrate us faster than others, and this has now been known as the “hydration index,” she adds. “For example, milk has a higher ‘hydration index’ compared to coffee or tea.”

Dr. Steinbauer says it’s also a good idea to take a container of fluid with you. “Keep it at your desk at work, or with you throughout the day. That will remind you to drink, and give you a visual scorecard on how you are doing.”

9. SNOOZING


Poor quality of sleep can be worse than getting only a few hours of shut-eye. Hitting the snooze button puts more stress on your body because it’s disrupting the process of sleep. That leaves you even more tired. “If the snooze button is really an indicator that you are too exhausted to move, than just reset the alarm,” Rentz says. “If your body can get out of bed once you hear the alarm, avoid at all costs the ‘snooze’ and just put your feet on the floor.”

10. SMOKING


No blacklist of habits will be complete without smoking. “It is clear that smoking is likely the single worst thing we can do,” Dr. Steinbauer says.

11. IGNORING A TREATABLE CONDITION


“A person who has a treatable chronic condition and chooses to ignore it would qualify as doing the ‘worst thing for themselves',” Dr. Steinbauer says. “We often see patients who have addiction, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, sleep apnea, and other treatable illnesses and choose to ignore them,” he adds. In the case of diabetes, high blood pressure and cholesterol, the patient may have few symptoms and the terrible effects do not appear for 10-20 years. “By then, it is too late; the damage is done.”

12. DRINK SODA, INCLUDING DIET, EVERY DAY


Sugary sodas have been losing to diet ones for several years now. Research has proven how unhealthy sugar is. Another recent one made a connection between soda and life expectancy decrease by 4.6 years because the sugar damages telomeres, which affect how cells age. Diet sodas, which can also kill you, taste similar to regular ones because they have artificial sweeteners that play tricks on the brain in a worse way than sugary sodas. If you need help cutting out diet soda, read 4 Ways to Beat Your Diet Soda Addiction in One Week.

13. BEING A WORKAHOLIC


“If we take the model of other addictions, the basic definition would be ‘continuing a behavior in a compulsive fashion, which has caused adverse outcomes,’” Dr. Steinbauer says. The effects of being a workaholic are far ranging, he adds, but most likely fall into: Overweight or underweight (both are malnutrition), high blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke (presumably from high blood pressure), even cancer is associated with more stress. “Work itself doesn’t cause the problem,” he adds. “It is the internal environment of the patient.”

14. TEXTING TOO MUCH


Looking down all the time to text and stare at your phone wreaks havoc on your posture, which significantly damages your health. A study has found that the added pressure on the spine can lead to tightness in the muscles in front of the shoulder, potentially causing rotator cuff tendinitis.

15. DRINKING MORE THAN TWO DRINKS A DAY


“Alcohol in moderation can improve blood pressure and lower the chances of heart disease,” Dr. Steinbauer says. “However, if you think you MIGHT be drinking too much, you probably are. In my experience, worrying about drinking is the first sign of having a problem with alcohol,” he adds. There is plenty of research showing how it slowly kills you if you drink excessively. Moderate drinking, one drink per day for women or two drinks per day for men, defined by the CDC, is associated with the lowest mortality rates in alcohol studies.

16. STAYING ON LOW-CARB AND LOW-FAT DIETS


The best diet in the world is a balanced one. Your body needs healthy carbs and fats to function properly. One-third of daily calories should come from high performance fats. Omega-3 fats in fish, nuts and veggies are crucial. “Low-fat” foods have a lot of sugar, so they can taste the same. And for men, low-fat diets lower testosterone production.

17. SITTING TOO MUCH


Watching whole seasons of your favorite show may sound like the perfect Friday night for some, but you’re putting your health at risk after just a couple of episodes. You are literally sitting yourself to death. Sitting more than 11 hours a day increases risk of premature death by 40 percent.

18. SMOKING TOO MUCH POT


“Smoking pot is like drinking alcohol,” Dr. Steinbauer says. “In moderation, I do not think it is more harmful than having a drink. In excess, marijuana, like other drugs and alcohol, has a syndrome of overuse that is harmful to the user,” he adds. Pot smokers won’t get cirrhosis, but they may have more lung disease. In addition, a chronic apathy and lack of energy seem to set in.

19. OVERLOOKING HEALTH SYMPTOMS


You may be sick and not even know it. If something out of the ordinary bothers you, a doctor’s visit is a good idea. “Don’t be afraid to come to the doctor,” Dr. Steinbauer says. “If something about your health is worrying you, come and see us. Sometimes people think ‘it’s nothing, I don’t want to waste the doctor’s time or waste my time,’ but if you are worried about something, it is NOT a waste of time to go to the doctor."

20. STAYING INDOORS FOR MORE THAN TWO DAYS IN A ROW


If you want to stay in bed all day, you may be suffering from depression, according to Dr. Steinbauer. But if you just don’t go outside, you are missing your vitamin D boost from sunshine. About 20 minutes of sunshine per day is recommended, he adds. Some symptoms of vitamin D deficiency include fatigue, depression, sweating, and chronic pain.

21. NOT APPLYING SUNSCREEN


The most common mistake people make, according to Dr. Elizabeth Hale, spokeswoman for the Skin Cancer Foundation and board-certified dermatologist, is thinking that they don’t need sunscreen. It is not true that you only need to apply it only at the beach. Research has shown that most skin damage is the result of incidental sun exposure – that’s when you’re pretty much everywhere but the beach and have not put sunscreen on. “90 percent of premature skin aging is caused by overexposure,” she adds. “Put sunscreen on no matter what.” The UV rays penetrate the clouds and windows so they can still harm you even when you think they can’t.

Moody Wisdom: I love the sun but let's be honest: Your best approach is limiting the amount of sun exposure and losing the sunscreen.

What else do you think you can cut out to achieve optimal health?

Are you having trouble attaining any level of weight loss or health success? Check out the list of tips and tricks in my post The 68 Best Ways to Lose Body Fat and More.

Picture Credit: MSN.com - Is your drink compromising your health?

Article Credit:
Author: Michael Moody Fitness with excerpt sourced from the article " The 21 Worst Things You Can Do For Your Body " on MSN.com.
"The 21 Worst Things You Can Do For Your Body" Review
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