Archive for November, 2015

America’s Least Fit (and Fittest) Cities

Americas Fittest Cities

In the recently released American College of Sports Medicine’s (ACSM) 2015 American Fitness Index data report, 10 cities ranked lowest in overall health and fitness. Each city received a ranking and areas that needed “worked on” as a whole for the city.

#10: Dallas, Texas – score 38.8/100

#9: New Orleans, Louisiana – score 36.8/100

#8: Charlotte, North Carolina – score 37.4/100

#7: Birmingham, Alabama – score 34.5/100

#6: Nashville, Tennessee – score 33.0/100

#5: Louisville, Kentucky – score 32.1/100

#4: San Antonio, Texas – score 32.0/100

#3: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma – score 29.6/100

#2: Memphis, Tennessee – score 27.3/100

#1: Indianapolis, Indiana – score 26.8/100

To view the full report and see the full results of these cities and other major metropolitan cities included in the ACSM’s research, visit www.americanfitnessindex.org.

And, the Fittest cities are…

#1: Washington, D.C.

#2: Minneapolis, Minnesota

#3: San Diego, California

#4: San Francisco, California

#5: Sacramento, California

#6: Denver, Colorado

#7: Portland, Oregon

#8: Seattle, Washington

#9: Boston, Massachusetts

#10: San Jose, California

Food for Thought

Top Reasons to Quit Soda Drinking… NOW

Soda

Gone are the days when everyone you ran into was drinking a sugary soda – whether regular or diet.  While you do still have those “die hards” who drink their soda every single chance they get, many others have caught onto all of the warnings that nutritionists have been telling us for years about the effects that soda has on our bodies.

But if you are still in the minority and enjoy your soda, here are some great reasons to quit drinking soda – both regular and diet – TODAY!

You eat less – in particular sweets.  At (on average) 150 calories per can, you can significantly reduce your sugar intake if you quit drinking soda.  The artificial sweeteners in diet soda are the worst for you, too, because they are 400 to 8,000 times sweeter than sugar.

You lose weight.  Even though diet drinks are calorie-free, they cause insulin to be released in your gut because of the artificial sweeteners and prevent weight loss.  Insulin is your body’s primary fat storage so it will have the body hold onto any extra fat.

You improve your immune system.  The acidity in soda is bad for your digestive system, erodes tooth enamel, and worsens acid reflux.  Research shows that artificial sweeteners affect our healthy gut bacteria, which can greatly affect our immune system.

You stop your bones from breaking down.  The caramel color in soda contains artificially created phosphorus that can be bad for long-term bone health.

Healthy Living

Got Mosquitoes? Myth vs. Fact!

Mosquitoes

 

It’s summertime and that means that the days are getting longer, the sun is shining later and the mosquitoes are biting everyone!

But how much do you know about these little buggers? Here we separate the myths from the facts:

 

MYTH: All mosquitoes will bite you.

It is only the female mosquito that bites you because she needs the blood for protein and energy to produce eggs. Male mosquitoes feed on flower nectar.

 

MYTH: Mosquitoes are more drawn to people who eat sweets.

Blood is blood. It is more how a person smells than how they taste, that attracts the most mosquitoes.

 

FACT: Mosquitoes prefer certain blood types.

Studies show that mosquitoes like to feast on Type O blood, but only the portion of O’s who are “secretors” meaning their bodies infuse specific molecules into their saliva, sweat and mucus.

 

FACT: Pregnancy increases your chances of being devoured by mosquitoes.

A study in 2000 reported that mosquitoes tend to bite expectant women more than others. Some think it is due to increased blood volume, while others believe it is due to pregnant women producing more heat and carbon dioxide, both which are bait for mosquitoes.

 

MYTH: Citronella and bug zappers are the best protectors against mosquitoes.

Actually your best defense is the 3 D’s – drain any standing water, dress in bright colors, and defend using Deet.

In the News

Fewer Adults Meeting Daily Food Guidelines

In the News

According to a recent study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), “less than 15 percent of adults eat enough fruits daily to meet federal recommendations, but the numbers are even worse in some states, dipping as low as 7.5 percent in Tennessee.”

Researchers also found that even fewer adults eat enough vegetables to meet daily recommendations.

The studies show that while the number of fruit and vegetable intake is low across the entire United States, the numbers are staggering in the Southern states.

Overall, the participants in the study consumed fruit less than once a day, and vegetables less than 1.7 times a day.

According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the model that the study was measured against, recommend that adults who get less than 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity each day should eat 1.5 to 2 cups of fruit and 2 to 3 cups of vegetables daily.  More active people can eat more fruits and vegetables during their day without adding too many additional calories to their diet.

The guidelines also recommend that we increase our intake of dark green and orange vegetables, as well as beans.

Fruits and Vegetables that are in season year round:

Apples

Bananas

Lettuce

Coconut

Mushrooms

Onions

Snow Peas

Potatoes

Avocados

Celery

Carrots

Bell Peppers

Bok Choy

Cherry Tomatoes