I just heard you groan. You’re thinking,¬†But you just told me that dieting does not necessarily help me lose (or gain) weight. Yes, yes I did.¬†Dieting does not help maintain healthy body weight. In fact, more and more research suggests that dieting actually harms your basal metabolic state, making you prone to regaining even more weight than you’ve lost and having a hard time losing it (again). (Please excuse the advertising at the end of the article linked. It’s the research surrounding¬†Biggest Loser that fascinates me most. Here is also a great article by IDEA.)

 

So, the bad news is that yo-yo dieting can slow down your metabolism and a slow metabolism means that you are prone to working harder for fewer results. And then there are genes, which do account for a certain (if small) percentage toward whether or not we are naturally inclined toward thin or not-so-thin. But here is where the good news comes in!

 

Epigenetics. It’s a word most of us have never heard of before. Translated as “control above genetics,” this is the study of how environment plays a role in “turning on” and “turning off” our genes. Food is one of the main environmental factors we have in our lives and it perhaps plays one of the biggest roles in how our genes function (exercise being another main player).

 

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It seems that Hippocrates was right when he said, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” Scientists have discovered that bioactive compounds like phytonutrients and antioxidants play a huge role in turning on genes that help us lose and maintain a healthy weight. Healthy lifestyle and diet choices can change the expression of at least 500 genes! This is great news for those of us who struggle with things like sugar addiction because it means that a wide, varying diet full of colorful fruits and vegetables nurtures your entire body right down to genetic expression. It means that you can start remaking yourself one bite (and one activity) at a time–and in 7-10 years, you’ll literally be a whole new person!

 

In my next post on this series, I’ll be sharing the small steps that I have been taking to help reduce my sugar cravings. I knew going in to this that it wasn’t going to be something that happened overnight, but I’m happy to say that I’m slowly seeing results. Looking forward to sharing more soon!

 

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Read the Whole Series here:

Part 1

Part 2

Matcha Tea

I hope this shortest of months is bringing us some results on our health, wellness, and fitness goals. Remember, it takes at least six weeks to really start seeing sustained results for weight loss, strength gains, flexibility increases, and so forth. Patience is the key!

 

Here are some articles on how to maximize your workout and diet regimens, and some healthy recipes, some of which are chocolaty–yummmm–to savor during this cold, snowy (in many areas) February. Wishing you a very happy Valentine’s Day!

 

The Link is What You Think

The Physiology of Fat Loss

Upper-body Causes of Pain and How to Fix Them

Training Glutes for Form and Function

When Money is Tight, Weekly Yoga Can Do the Trick

Exercises for Fibromyalgia

4 Cardio Mistakes to Avoid

5 Exercises to Include in Every Workout

6 Workout Rules to Ignore

Supercharge the Ab Crunch

5 Full-body Exercises that Challenge You

Look Better in Leggings Workout

6 Detox Yoga Pose Sequence

10 Ways to Detoxify Your Body

Breakfast as a Weight Loss Strategy Off?

Avocado Curves Appetite

A Magnesium Primer

Black Bean Burgers with Sriracha Aioli

Warming Winter Soup Recipes

Raspberry Custard Tartlette

Secret Ingredient No Bake Macaroons

Allergen-free Valentine’s Day Desserts/Treats

How to Store Ginger

Roasted Sunflower Seed Butter

Just Beet It Muffins

This past weekend I finished up the last class needed for my 200-RYT. I’ve got YogaFit to thank for not only giving me an affordable way to earn a yoga certification but also for being so supportive and helpful to both me and my husband regarding our daughter. Everyone loved her and gave his aching back a break by snatching her away when possible; and I was allowed to breastfeed on demand.

To put it bluntly, they’re awesome! And needless to say, the Wee One stole many hearts. If you’re looking into getting a yoga certification, check them out. They may appear to be non-traditional at first (I thought they were but needed a route I could afford at the time I started), but they really try to convey the essence of yoga in addition to giving you the tools necessary to teach in an infinite number of ways–that one way which is uniquely yours. They may or may not be the program you ultimately decide to go with but they have some great pros, including:

  • Pay as you go, per class
  • Great conventions
  • Experienced, kind instructors (and, sometimes, pets)
  • Excellent staff
  • They take the GI Bill and the military spouse MyCAA Scholarship
  • They offer the 200- and 500-hour RTY programs, and a 100-hour YogaFit for Warriors certification designed to help the military cope with the stresses of daily life, PTSD, trauma and so forth
  • It’s looking good for their therapy certification (crossing fingers the IAYT approves their program)
  • Classes are offered across the country, and in several countries too

I have had a hard time finding anything negative to say, but I suppose if there is anything, it would be that so much of their apparel and yoga accessories are cute and expensive. Still, with that said, I’ve had a great time earning my 200-RYT and hope to continue onward.

Switching tracks, below are some yummy recipes that have collected themselves in my inbox over the past month. Drool, save them, give them a try, and let me know how you like them!

Maple Butternut Squash Smoothie

Crock-pot Cinnamon Applesauce

Chewy Peanut Butter Banana Granola Bars

Apricot Banana Walnut Granola Bars

Coconut Cinnamon Raising French Toast w/Blueberry Yogurt Sauce

GF Muesli Breakfast Muffins

Chicken and Broccoli Stir Fry

Southwestern Chicken Casserole

Healthy Loaded Sweet Potato Nachos with Guacamole

Spicy Detox Salad

Winter Warming Soups

Veg-friendly Bowls

Finish w/Something Sweet

Macadamia Chocolate Chip Cookies