Archive for June, 2015

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Amazing Benefits of Mango

They say an apple a day will keep the doctor away. But what about mango? One of the healthiest fruits you can possibly have is the mango and the health benefits are quite overwhelming. Not only does a mango taste delicious but it helps to weight loss, prevent cancer, promote eye health, clear skin, lower cholesterol, diabetes, improve digestion, boosts your immune system, heat stroke, kidney stones, and even enhances sexual functions.

I personally love eating a fresh mango raw or having it in a smoothie but have learned not to ingest too much as it can cause minor stomach inflammation. If you are not interested in eating raw mango you could always search for some African Mango in supplement form. Regardless, adding mango to your daily diet will greatly improve the way you live and feel. Before we look at some of the amazing benefits a mango has to offer, let us first have a quick history lesson.

 

Quick History of Mango

 

Mangos have been around for thousands of years and can be used for several different occasions. Although the mango is native to southeast Asia and is the national fruit of India (largest producer), the world also gets its mangos from China, Thailand, Pakistan, and Philippines. Not only is the mango used for health benefits, but in many cultures the leaves are used as floral decorations for weddings, rituals, and other celebrations.

A mango tree can grow up to be around 130 feet (40 meters) and about 33 feet (10 meters) in diameter. Some mango trees are still producing fruit after 300 years. There are roughly 400 strains of mangos that we are familiar with, however some say there are many more. Mangos come in a variety of colors and blends of red, yellow, green, and orange along with an unique oblong pit.

Mangos are great to cook with and can be used to make oil, salsa, jelly, curry, beer, smoothies, ice cream, juice, and many more. Mango beer is quite rare unless you are in the Virgin Islands, in which case I highly recommend you try. Cooking with mango enhances flavor like you would never expect. And there are plenty of mango recipes all over the internet.

mango bowl


Health Benefits of Mango

Weight Loss

-Great for those who want to lose weight and helps suppress appetite so you feel fuller, longer. Fiber from mango also kicks up your digestive system a bit to rid any unwanted waste. Be careful not to overeat mango as you will feel slight stomach inflammation.

Helps Prevent Cancer

-High amounts of antioxidants and enzymes help to prevent cancer especially in the prostate, colon, and breast region. Mangos also have anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic, antiviral, and antibacterial properties which is why several universities are researching the health benefits of mango.

Improves Eye Health

-Vitamin A comes into play here to help improve eye sight, dryness, and night blindness. With just one cup (roughly half a mango) you can easily obtain a third of your daily vitamin A. Having vision is vital to us as humans and we often take it for granted.

Clears Up Skin

-Skin clears from the inside out so eating half a mango a day would be ideal for optimum skin health. Mango can also be mashed up and used as an exfoliator to easily eliminate pimples and acne. There are even facials scrubs with mango in them.

Lowers Cholesterol & Diabetes

-Helps to lower your low-density lipoprotein levels (the bad cholesterol). Mangos are absolutely perfect for those with diabetes. With a low glycemic index a diabetic can indulge in mango without having to worry about sugar levels getting too high.

Better Digestion

-The amounts of fiber in mango will help your body digest better and in turn absorb nutrients more efficiently. A huge problem today is people do not even come close to their recommended daily intake of fiber. Even with half a mango a day you will notice a difference.

Boosts Immune System

-Roughly half of a mango accounts for over 75% of your daily vitamin C so ingesting some when feeling ill is a great start to get your immune system back on track. Along with other antioxidants like vitamins A and B, mango puts up a defense to aid against heart and brain disease.

Heat Stroke

-With summer weather just around the corner it could be beneficial knowing mango can cool your internal temperature and prevent heat stroke. One of the most efficient ways to get it into your system is juice the mango and add it 50/50 with water. So if you have 4oz. of mango juice, simply add 4oz. of water. This will help the mango absorb into your body faster as well as hydrating it with water.

Kidney Stones

-Break down kidney stones and aid in the prevention them forming simply by eating some mango a few times a week. With those that have had kidney stones before you should consider this.

Sexual Functions

-Improves sexual functions and sex drive especially in men due to the high amounts of vitamin E. Some people even call mango the ‘love fruit’. This reminds me of an episode of Seinfeld where George has a problem rising to the occasion and ultimately discovers how mangos help him.

 

How to Cut a Mango in 3 EASY Steps

 

*Be sure to thoroughly rinse the mango before cutting into it to avoid risk of pushing pesticides into the fruit. Simple tap water will work just fine.

Step Onecutting a mango

Carefully cut down both sides of the mango to separate the pit. The pit is larger and more ovular shape then you may be use to.

Step Two

Cut a grid pattern into the mango trying not to slice through the skin.

Step Three

Invert the mango slice for an easy handheld version or simply spoon the pieces out into a bowl.

You could always use a mango slicer for easier use!

 

Mango Salsa Recipe

Mango Salsa
 

Total Prep Time: 5 Minutes

Serving Size: 4 to 6

Ingredients:

  • One mango (peeled and diced)
  • 1/2 cup cucumber (peeled and diced)
  • 1 tablespoon jalapeno (finely chopped)
  • 1/3 cup red onion (diced)
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1/3 cup cilantro leaves (chopped)
  • Pinch of salt and pepper

Directions: Combine the mango, cucumber, jalapeno, red onion, lime juice and cilantro leaves and mix well. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Recipe courtesy Ellie Krieger


References:

Fritz, R. (2012). “10 Health Benefits of Mangos.” Accessed from Care2 on March 4th, 2015.

Ponce, N. (2014). “Research Studies Show Mango May Help Prevent Breast Cancer.” Accessed from Agriculture and Life Sciences on March 10th, 2015.

Krieger, E. (2008). “Mango Salsa.” Accessed from Food Network on March 11th, 2015.

 

10 Tips for Easy Weight Loss

Many of us struggle on a daily basis with our weight and health. Being overweight causes so many physical ailments that ultimately lead to poor health. With the massive amount of processed foods and fast food, our eating habits, especially in America, have changed quite dramatically. One thing about losing weight is that it is actually easy to do. The hardest part, once you desired weight has been reached, is maintaining that number. Luckily, there are a few easy tips for weight loss that you can do to get your body looking good and boost your self confidence. 

 

Eating Habits

1) You must change the way you eat. This all comes down to your mindset on nutrition and what goals you aspire to achieve. Stop thinking short term health and only think long term. A great start is completely avoiding any fast food, quit drinking any beverage with added sugars, especially pop/soda, and various juices (which are worse for you than most pop/soda). You would be quite surprised on the results from this advice alone.

2) Drink plenty of water. We as humans rely on water for survival as well as optimal health. It is recommended to get around 80 ounces (2.3L) of water daily to help rid our body from toxins. The flavor of water is boring on its own which is why you can easily add lemon for taste along with additional health benefits and boosting metabolism.

Some people even added other fruits like raspberries, strawberries, kiwis, etc. Also, you should try adding sliced cucumber to your water for a rather refreshing beverage. Stay away from powered flavor packets as they cause nothing but harm.

3) Use coconut oil. Coconut oil is the new craze for cooking oil because of its amazing health benefits. Most of use are more comfortable cooking with oils like canola, peanut, or olive oils. Coconut oil has some incredible properties in it and will give your food a much more interesting and enjoyable flavor.

4) Limit your sugar intake. As mentioned above, stay away from pop/soda and anything with additional sugar added. Try adding fresh fruit to your daily diet to easily meet you daily sugar needs. The sugar in fruit is completely different from white cane sugar which cannot be fully processed by your body. Sugar in fruit is perfect for those with diabetes because you body can easily process it.

5) Eat more spicy foods. Eating spicy food immediately kicks your metabolism up a notch. When you sweat from spicy foods, or working out, you are riding your body of toxins. Eating foods with spice is more of a secret way to burn a few extra calories. If you have a hard time with spicy food you could always try a supplement form known as Capsiplex Sport.

6) Stay away from popular diets. Any popular diet like Atkins, Weight Watchers, South Beach, are absolutely worthless. Why? Because they are simply too demanding and ONLY short term. If you want to lose a few pounds before your trip next month, then this may be ok.

However, if you want to maintain a healthier weight for life then stay far away from any dieting programs and focus on eating from the basic food groups. If you are looking to lose some serious weight then a weight loss supplement, like Phen375, may be what you need to get started.

7) Eat more vegetables. A lot of us hate vegetables and never consider to add them to our daily diet. The problem with this is that vegetables contain nutrients and vitamins that we need to promote proper health. Eating a simply salad a day will change how you feel and how your body absorbs nutrients from other food. Rule of thumb: half of your plate should be vegetables.

Stay Active

8) Spend less time inside in front of electronic devices and television. Quite spending so much time in front of a screen and go outside. Instead of spending so much wasted time reading senseless garbage on social media sites, go for a little walk, rake leaves, shovel snow, use stairs, park your car farther out in the lot, jumping jacks, etc.

Anything to get your body moving is incredible important to keep metabolism up. After four hours of sitting your body begins to shut down and that is when the weight can quickly build back up.

9) Simple daily exercises. Eating healthy is one thing, however, for optimal weight loss you must do some exercising. A gym membership is not required to do basic exercises like push-ups, planks, leg lifts, squat jumps, etc. These are easy to do and only take a few minutes. More serious exercises like high intensity works or even yoga would be an amazing start.

10) Never give up. No matter how many times you have tried to lose weight, never give up. Most weight gain comes from not knowing the basic rules of weight loss. Having a positive mindset, no matter how long it takes to achieve your goals, is the most important concept in this process.



References:

Jacques, R. (2015). “What Type Of Cooking Oil You Should Use For Every Occasion” Accessed from Huffington Post on June 20th, 2015.

WebMD. (2015). “Weight Loss & Diet Plans.” Accessed from WebMD on June 20th, 2015.

Gunnars, K. (2015). “Drugs and Supplements: DHEA.” Accessed from Authority Nutrition on June 20th, 2015.

 

 

Anabolic Steroid Supplements Explained

Anabolic steroids

Defined as manmade substances related to boosting testosterone levels (male sex hormone). Doctors use anabolic steroids to treat hormone problems in men, delayed puberty, aids, and muscle loss for some diseases.  Legally, anabolic steroids can only be obtained for medical reasons, however, there are steroid alternatives, or steroid supplements, that mimic the effects of anabolic steroids.

Steroid supplements contain no side effects because they work off substances your body can already produce or all natural ingredients. Obtaining steroid supplements requires no prescription and is the best thing for you when bulking up. But before we get too far ahead, lets talk about illegal steroids.

What are illegal steroids?

Using doctor prescribed steroid injections simply to gain muscle mass, for athletic reasons, is what makes them illegal. Found mainly in the form of injections, these are suppose to be only for medical conditions. These steroids are synthetic versions of testosterone and are often abused by athletes to boost performance. There is nothing wrong with wanting to be stronger, faster, and more masculine, but many say this is cheating. 

anabolic-steroidsHowever, there are steroid alternatives that mimic the results of anabolic steroids but without the dangerous side effects. Why? Because they contain all natural as opposed to synthetic, or manmade, substances that will cause more harm than good.

Most ingredients found in the higher quality products like CrazyMass are formulated just right to give you everything you need when bodybuilding. The problem is that many people are unfamiliar with steroid supplements and consider them to be just are harmful as the illegal ones.

Anabolic Steroid Supplements

The term legal steroid is often confused with steroid supplement. A steroid supplement is a much safer alternative to injections and is most commonly found in pill form. The more aggressive steroid supplements contain dehydroepiandrosterone, or DHEA, which helps with hormone production in both men and women. After the age of 30, even earlier for women, we begin losing DHEA levels in our body.

Research has suggested that higher levels of DHEA promotes muscle growth, better mood, sex drive, osteoporosis, and many more. Most of us suffer from lower levels which results in various illnesses and physical decline.

It is important when researching steroid supplements to make sure the company is well trusted. There are so many supplement companies out there that produce knock-off products and make a ton of money taking advantage of people. Always get opinions of others that actually use any supplements you may be interested in.


References:

NIDA. (2015). “What are anabolic steroids?” Accessed from National Institute on Drug Abuse on June 14th, 2015.

Men’s Fitness. (2015). “Supplements vs Steroids.” Accessed from Men’s Fitness on June 14th, 2015.

Mayo Clinic. (2014). “Drugs and Supplements: DHEA.” Accessed from Mayo Clinic on June 15th, 2015.