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Building A Better Body and Brain

BUILDING A BETTER BRAIN & BODY: How Nutrition Can HelpDid you know that unless you’re growing your own food on the top of a lush, untouched Andean pinnacle, or a thriving virgin delta somewhere, it is highly likely that you are not getting the vitamins and minerals that your body and brain need to operate at their optimal efficiency? Without wanting to scare the pants off you (or perhaps that’s what it will take?!), the soils where most of us get our vegetables and fruits from these days are badly depleted of life giving nutrients. They’re also often poisoned with enough chemicals and pesticides to melt the Wicked Witch of the West before you can say ‘there’s no place like home’. Chemicals, pesticides and other household and environmental pollutants result in body/brain toxicity and rampaging free radical damage to our cells… But that’s another story.What I want to talk about here is our nutritional intake. Is it up to scratch for the pace of our modern day lifestyle? Are we getting enough of essential vitamins and minerals to fight aging, disease, illness, fatigue, depression and other illnesses of our time? Is what we’re eating giving us what our bodies and brains need to build a healthy immune system and providing us with copious energy and vitality to keep up with our kids, excel in our jobs and enjoy the life we have, here and now?No!Not only is the soil in which our food grows a very real problem, the majority of average Australians eat more fast foods and processed foods than ever before. Eating these types of foods creates a kind of ‘nutrient starvation’ in our body which can lead to fatigue, illness, depression, obesity and disease if prolonged and excessive. So, clearly we need to do something about it! The problem is nutrient deficiency; the solution is to boost our daily food intake with SOMETHING! Now, for most of us to get the required amount of vitamins and minerals we need to support our bodies and minds, we would need to consume ridiculous amounts of fruit, vegetables, nuts, proteins and grains everyday which had been grown in nutrient rich soils and eaten within hours of being picked. This just is not possible for most of us.I would suggest that a combination of approaches is a good idea.• If you can afford it, buy organic or grow your own… along with being chemical & pesticide free and non-modified, it tastes better too! There is no reason you cannot have a mini-vegie garden grown in pots on your balcony.

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• Take a multivitamin – a good one will be highly absorbable into the blood stream, and contain those trace minerals that we cannot get anywhere else except by introducing them ourselves to our bodies.• Eat a balanced diet packed with a nice variety of veggies and fruit and change it up each day.ORGANIC: It is important to check your organic source. The Australian Certified Organic Standards is easy to come by on the net and provide all the information on what to look for when buying organic produce, whether fresh or packaged. You can even do a search for the product you’re curious about. Growing your own vegetables, herbs and fruits is a great alternative or addition to your regular fruit and vegie intake. Ready to go organic potting mixes are available at most garden stores and it’s really so easy to grow something edible, even in pots on a balcony or courtyard. I have spring onions, strawberries, thyme, mint, parsley and rosemary.MULTIVITAMIN SUPPLEMENTS: I recently discovered that many Australians are only consuming half the recommended intake of fruits and vegetables… when you do that math, it means not only are we eating way less than what we should be, if those veggies that we do eat are significantly low in nutrients, we really only getting a quarter or less of our required vitamins and minerals! Scary!Check out these scary stats… In 1948 Apples contained approximately 25 mgs of Vitamin C. The CSIRO report “The Diminishing Nutritional Values of Australian Grown Fruit and Vegetables: Comparison between 1948 and 1991” (accessed 12 April, 2007, showed just 5mg of Vitamin C was present in Apples in 1991. Similarly, the same report showed that Broccoli contained approximately 175mgs of Magnesium in 1948 and in 1991 Broccoli Magnesium content had dropped dramatically to just 25mg.The nutritionals industry is cashing in on this deficit and producing supplements that are supposed to be packed with everything we could need for our bodies including trace elements and antioxidants to neutralise free radicals. The problem, the vast majority of them, provide the nutrients in a form that is not bio-available, so you end up ‘pee-ing it down the toilet’ before your body has the chance to absorb it.The nutrients in live fruit and veggies in their natural form, ie. Plants! are wrapped in fibres and proteins to help our bodies take them in. Multivitamins that are not bound to organic compounds such as these crystalise in the gut, making them insoluble and pretty much useless! What’s more, the antioxidants that many well-known nutritional supermarket brands claim will fight free radicals in your system actually help to create the very free radicals that they’re supposed to get rid of. This is because isolated minerals such as Vitamins A, C & E can actually produce free radicals if they’re not bound by an organic compound like they are in our fresh produce.This means, the antioxidants that are ‘added’ to your traditional multivitamins have to neutralise the free radicals produced by the very vitamins you’re swallowing, which means less antioxidants are available to fight the free radicals already in your system!Sounds complex… but in a nutshell; the antioxidants and vitamins you consume in everyday supplements actually cancel each other out and are ineffective for your overall wellbeing! So, if you want a quality supplement to support your organic food intake, you have to look for the right type. There are a few nutrient brands available in the wellbeing marketplace that have broken through this barrier, but you can’t get them at your supermarket or chemist.Finding a nutrient supplement that will actually be effective in building a better brain and body means researching: look at the appropriate nutrient levels for your body type, age, size and gender (women, men and children have very different nutritional requirements, particularly men and women ‘of a certain age’!), AND most importantly, you make sure it is bio-available. Recent scientific studies have identified a type of organic compound that wraps itself around the vitamins and minerals in the supplement, making them more readily absorbable. It’s known as Oligofructose complex, or in short, ‘Oligo’. It makes the vitamins soluble so that they can be absorbed into the blood stream rather than being excreted as waste.I’ve found a brand that ticks all the boxes that I’ve mentioned and that really works for me. It has the ‘oligofructose’ organic compound in it. The ‘Oligo’ helps the minerals and vitamins be absorbed and it also protects them, limiting their capacity for creating free radicals. This means the added antioxidants in the nutritionals can fight the free radicals that are already there. I’ve definitely noticed that my energy levels on the days that I remember to take them, are vastly improved! This is because I’m getting about 80% MORE vitamins and minerals absorbed into my body. They’re wrapped similarly to the nutrients found in fruit and veggies and so my cells can take them in and actually use them! If you want more information about these wonder vitamins, you can email me and I’ll let you know where and how to get them.

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BALANCED DIET: I’ve included the generally accepted Australian healthy eating and food guidelines here for your reference. You can download the brochure and keep it handy at home. However, I’d like to note that EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT! I’m really noticing that there are certain foods that my body just does not tolerate. I do not have dairy or wheat allergies, but my gut feels bloated and generally not good when I have them, so I substitute, eat sparingly, or eliminate all together, depending on my will power at the time! I love bread and cheese, but my body does not! Nuts are another thing that makes me feel yuck so I’m steering clear of them.The point here… LISTEN to what your body is telling you… be mindful of its reactions to what you eat and choose foods accordingly. Generally, it is best to stick to complex carbs such as leafy greens, and fresh fruits and veggies. The traditional apples, pears, oranges and bananas may not be as exotic as the stone fruits and such, but they have less fructose and less salicylate (the culprit in many fresh food allergies) than mangos, strawberries and the like.If you’re in doubt about what to eat, stick to the basics, good old fashioned meat and fresh veggies is best for most people. In my book, there are THREE GOLDEN RULES:1. EAT FRESH / GROW YOUR OWN2. TAKE A QUALITY NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENT3. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY!

The Secrets to Building a Better Body – Correct Nutrition

In a previous article on ‘The secrets to building a better body’ I outlined the need for correct form during exercise. In this article I describe the important part that correct nutrition plays in the development of the body that we desire.Correct nutrition.
Again, no big secret here! The growth of your body depends entirely upon what you put into your mouth. If you eat rubbish and processed food then don’t expect your body to respond by developing wonderful muscles. Number one piece of advice here is to EAT CLEAN. I talked above about sticking to the simple exercises. With nutrition, stick to the basic foods. Avoid the complex sauces and flavourings, and avoid over-cooking. You should really be aiming to eat five or six smaller meals a day – this may sound challenging, but with a little fore-thought you can soon develop an effective and workable diet plan. Below is a typical daily menu plan that my wife and I follow throughout our training periods:

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Breakfast Porridge made with skimmed milk, tea, lemon juice, supplements.
Mid-morning Protein shake
Lunch Green salad, rice, chicken
Mid-afternoon Low fat yoghurt mixed with low fat cottage cheese.
Dinner Turkey steak, green salad, jacket potatoes
Before bed Three rice cakes with cottage cheese and pineappleAgain, if you browse through any of the fitness and bodybuilding magazines you could become overwhelmed with the vast array of supplements on offer. Food supplementation is big business, and advertisers will try to sell you the dream. Remember, if you are at the early stages of your training then keep your supplements simple. You must be taking in sufficient vitamins and minerals, so make sure you have daily multivitamin tablets. You will get vitamins from the food you eat, but even the most ‘organic’ produce loses some vitamin content in the preparation procedures. We also take fish oils to provide us with the necessary Omega 3 fatty acids. Protein drinks are also a good idea as they provide the additional protein intake you will need if your muscles are going to grow consistently. We prefer the RTD (‘Ready-to-Drink’) products as we find these more convenient than trying to make up shakes in the morning before leaving for work.

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So eat regularly, and eat clean, but don’t forget a cheat-day! One day a week, eat whatever you want. It does the body good to have the occasional nutritional shock, but you’ll be amazed at how difficult it becomes to actually cheat. During the first few weeks of training, ordering the pizza on your cheat-day or popping down the take-away will seem like a real treat. However, when you really get into your training and nutrition, you will find that junk food becomes less and less appetising, and any cravings will disappear – it’s amazing!

Common Sense Ideas to Building a Better Body

You know it is amazing to the kind of rubbish the fitness industry is spouting nowadays and the magic pills, powders and snake oil on the shelves of supermarkets, pharmacies and even health shops. It is incredible how unscrupulous some supplement manufacturers can be. I knew a guy, Personal trainer who worked for a well supplement label who left them recently because they were ‘cutting’ their product with powdered milk like they were drugs dealers or something. Don’t believe me? Doesn’t matter unless you can answer me this, ‘How can we think we can trick a body that has evolved over millions of years with some powder or pill that some nutjob cooked up is his basement, stuck a pretty label on it and abracadabra, instant Arnold’.I not saying don’t trust anyone, just consider the source. Look for research that can be justified scientifically, like the research done, for example by Dr. Michael Colgan of the Colgan institute. He is all about the science and he is brutally honest which I like. Also remember that you are unique so use the advice of others but also listen to your body. Remember to stay as natural as possible, we are creatures with a stone age body and a 21st century mind so don’t be blown away by some steroid using bodybuilding magazine chump with messed up kidneys and on the brink of a imminent heart condition. Also remember the little magazine trick of ‘Air Brushing and Computer Enhancement’. Magazines cannot be trusted.

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So in conclusion, if you find someone who has succeeded in getting the body you would like and-1. Criticizes Health and Fitness magazines,
2. Tells you that most supplements a load of rubbish.
3. Tells you not to listen the so-called ‘Experts’ who want your money but tell you a load of rubbish.
4. Basically to unlearn all you have learned and start over, I say give your ear because maybe this guy is going to tell you truth, just make sure he is prepared to back up his/her claims with a guarantee. If their method works so well they will not be afraid to back it up.If the old way is not working for you then it is time to try something new. Just keep the mind of a skeptic. Now, just to clarify, a cynic is a person who puts ideas or information down because it makes him feel better about himself /herself due to the fact he/she can’t think of something better or more useful to say. Stay away from such people. A skeptic on the other hand is a person who simply bases him/her judgment on the evidence put before them in a logical, objective manner, listen to this person. Just use your common sense and look and listen to what the person from whom you seek advice on a health and fitness program has to offer. Examine their history, claims and remember because it is expensive, it doesn’t mean it is any good so don’t be afraid to hunt for a bargain and even for a few bonuses because, you know what, you deserve it. Don’t believe that, ‘You get what you Pay for rubbish’.

Dumbbell Workout Program, Build A Better Body, Fast!

A weird thing happens to both men and women. They wake up one morning and are shocked to see the person staring back at them from the mirror. Who is this person? Why are they so fat? Where did their youthful, athletic appearance go? And when they realize the person is really themselves, they sigh, “How did I let myself get so out of shape?”It’s time for a dumbbell workout program!A dumbbell workout program, properly done, builds strong muscles, burns off fat, strengthens the abdominals, improves cardiorespiratory endurance and creates real-world strength and conditioning you can use to improve your quality of life. So, when you want to get back in shape fast, it’s time to dust off those dumbbells and get to work.But one word of caution.All dumbbell workout programs are not created equal!If you want to get the most out of your dumbbell workout program, look for a workout program that simultaneously builds a strong, attractive body, burns off fat and improves cardiorespiratory conditioning. Unfortunately, most of the dumbbell workout programs you see people performing or read about are based on bodybuilding style training. This is not the way to get the most out of your dumbbell training.

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By bodybuilding style dumbbell training, I mean using dumbbells to “isolate” small muscle groups. Usually, this goes hand in hand with using light dumbbells. Just think about it, if you are going to “isolate” a small muscle, you’ll only be able to use a small weight. This is not an efficient or effective use of your dumbbell training! (I’m putting parentheses around isolation, because in my opinion it is impossible to completely isolate a muscle. Plus, I don’t see the value in doing so, even if you could.)By dumbbell workout program, I mean a full body workout program using only dumbbells. And by full body I mean all the muscles in the body, plus the heart and lungs. Yes, contrary to popular belief, you can get a great full body muscle building and cardiorespiratory workout all in one. And just think at all the time you’ll save!I personally use three types of dumbbell lifts in my dumbbell workout program:- Grinding “Slow” Lifts: These are dumbbell lifts like presses, rows, squats and deadlifts. These lifts build functional muscle in all the right places. When you know how to combine them into a full dumbbell workout program, you can build the entire body and improve heart and lung function at the same time!- Explosive “Quick” Lifts: These are dumbbell lifts like swings, snatches and jerks. These lifts not only build explosive, athletic muscle, but they boost cardiorespiratory endurance and burn off fat. So, you don’t just keep and build more muscle, but you strip away the fat keeping your from your best body!- Dumbbell Combo Matrixes. These are my personal favorite, where you combine two or more dumbbell lifts into one exercise. This is great for teaching your body to function as one complete unit with strength and conditioning. And since these dumbbell exercises are very challenging, they burn a lot of calories both during and after the workout!

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At this point you may be thinking, “This doesn’t look like any dumbbell workout program I’ve seen”. And you’re right. It’s better.The sad truth is, the dumbbell is one of the most underused and misused pieces of training equipment. Men usually limit their use to dumbbell curls, dumbbell flys or dumbbell kickbacks. While there is nothing wrong with those exercises, they don’t constitute a full dumbbell workout program and are not the best ways to use dumbbells. And ladies, stop using dumbbells for just light weight “toning” exercise! You’re missing out on the true benefits of dumbbell training.I hope this article has opened your eyes to the fantastic results you can get when you perform a dumbbell workout program designed to use dumbbells to their full potential. In my opinion, there is no faster way to build a strong, attractive body, improve cardiorespiratory conditioning and burn off fat.Now look in the mirror and answer this question:”Couldn’t you benefit from a proper dumbbell workout program?”

Build A Better Body

As both a writer and writing instructor I often tout the importance of introductions and conclusions, however it does not do to overlook the body of your article or essay. After all, no matter how intriguing your introduction or how compelling your conclusion, if the body of your essay falls flat then you will have failed as a writer.Creating a powerful, effective body for your essay or article is not challenging if you plan carefully, write meaningfully, and revise repeatedly. In fact, if you plan carefully and write meaningfully then you may not have to revise very much, but you should still allow time just in case.Planning carefully means spending time to brainstorm and mull over the ideas and elements you would like to cover in the body of your essay or article. What topic do you plan to write about? Ask yourself an important question related to that topic and your answer to that question will often become the basis for your thesis statement — or quite simply the point you are trying to make with this essay or article.

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Now that you have identified your main point, or thesis, you can begin to build on this foundation. You must now make a list of three, four or five (although I prefer to use 3 or 5 for some odd reason) points you can make to expand or support this main point or thesis.For example, perhaps you plan to write an essay about why writing is a rewarding career path. So you could make your thesis: Writing is a rewarding career path because it offers professional rewards, financial rewards, and personal rewards.Now your challenge is to build the body of your essay or article with these topics in mind. If you are writing a short piece then you can simply write one or two paragraphs on each of these three points: professional, financial, and personal rewards. If you are writing a longer piece then you will write a section focused on those three points. In order to develop each section you could then brainstorm three points to make about each of these topics.

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For example, writing can help you professionally by serving as a profession in itself, by furthering most other professional fields, and by furthering your education, could all be topics you could explore within the “professional” writing section.Spending time before you write to brainstorm, plan and craft a solid thesis can help you with your writing and a clear thesis can also help your reader understand what you are writing.Building a better body for your essay and article does not have to be difficult or challenging, but spending time to plan and execute the body of your piece can make a substantial difference in the outcome of your writing.