Being Fit and Healthy – The Ultimate Guide to Staying Healthy

In this guide we will be looking at how to maintain a healthy body, a healthy mind and a healthy eating plan. All three of these elements together make up a healthy and fit lifestyle. This is what this site is dedicated to and throughout this guide you will find many links to articles written both on this site and a couple of slected other ones. The purpose is to help, inspire and motivate you in to Being Fit and Healthy!

Being Fit and Healthy Rocks! – Healthy Eating

  1. Being fit and healthy - Healthy Eating SaladDrink at least 8 glasses of water a day. Click here to discover more about the health benefits of drinking water or if you prefer here is the video - http://beingfitandhealthyrocks.com/the-importance-of-drinking-water-the-video/.
  2. Carbohydrates are needed by you body as its main source of energy. Make sure to have at least 40% of your diet as carbs. To find out more have a look here.
  3. Protein is needed by the body to build and maintain muscles. At least 30% of your diet should consist of protein like lean chicken or fish. If vegetarian then your protein can come from things like beans, tofu and nuts.
  4. Fiber is used to help remove waste from the body. It also adds bulk to food, so helps you to feel fuller for longer.
  5. Fats, now before you go I do not need fat, you do. It is used in various cell processes and to help lubricate the skin. Before you dismiss fat altogether as bad it is important to recognize there are different types. One of which is actually helpful to maintaining fit and healthy. 
  6. Make sure you have at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables each day. These provide many of the essential vitamins and minerals your body needs to keep fit and healthy. To find out some different ways to get your five a day, take a look at this post.
  7. Your body needs a variety of vitamins and minerals, also known as macronutrients. To find out why and what each one is used for click here for a guide to the essential vitamins and minerals.
  8. When trying to lose weight, it is useful to know that 1 pound in weight is equal to 3500 calories. This may seem a lot, but if you target to cut down 500 calories each day then that will be 1 pound lost in a week. Over a month that is 4-5 pounds. Not bad going, when you think of it like that it becomes a much easier, obtainable goal.
  9. Green Tea is one of the best thinks to drink for being fit and healthy. Not only does it have several anti-oxidant properties, but can also help weight-loss by helping to speed up the metabolism. To find out more about how green tea can benefit you have a look at this article - http://beingfitandhealthyrocks.com/green-tea-top-10-reasons-we-should-all-drink-more/.
  10. Wine, surprisingly can be good for your health, but only in moderation. Red wine in particular has been shown by various studies to help your heart health and also contain several anti-oxidants. Wine though is high in calories due to the high sugar content. This means if you are looking to lose weight try to limit your wine intake to one or two glasses a week.
  11. Salt, although an excellent condiment and helps add flavor to food while cooking does have a downside. Having too much can be harmful for the liver and kidneys. To find out how what the salt RDA is take a look here - http://beingfitandhealthyrocks.com/sodium-chloride-salt/
  12. Healthy Eating - SalmonIf you are bored of the food you are eating try adding a few herbs and spices to change the taste. These have no extra calories; so can be added freely without worry. Try things like Chicken with rosemary or tarragon. Maybe Tuna with a sprinkling of mixed curry spices, like coriander, turmeric, chili, cumin etc. This is great when barbecued and served with plain yoghurt and cucumber.
  13. Super foods – This is a category of foods that have achieved almost angelic status and pages have been written about them. They are essentially certain foods like Broccoli and Blueberries that have many nutritional benefits, but very few drawbacks.
  14. Breakfast is perhaps the most important meal of the day. This is because it has probably been at least 10 – 12 hours since you last ate. So breakfast is literally just that – "breaking the fast". A good breakfast should consist of a protein and carbohydrate element, with a little fat and some fruit if you can. This will give your body an energy boost and help you concentrate through the morning without feeling hungry. An example would be muesli, skimmed milk and a banana. Or you could try a bio-yoghurt, shelled nuts and an Orange.
  15. One of the reasons most people fail at diets is because of hunger between meals. The problem when we get hungry is that we tend to snack on unhealthy, high fat and high sugar foods. Have a look here for a list of 40 healthy snack ideas
  16. Coffee has been found to have numerous health benefits, such as burning fat and increasing our metabolism and thus energy. To have a read of one of the studies you can go here – http://www.worldcoffeepress.com/4115/coffee-to-aid-weight-loss/.
  17. Sugar is a bad carbohydrate; it is unrefined and turned into energy very quickly by the body. The problem is, is that any excess is turned into fat just as quickly. Sugar is hidden in many foods and can be one of the reasons why when losing weight people seem to hit a plateau. It is often added to low-fat foods to provide the flavor the fat would have done. This means if you are buying low fat ready meals look not only at the fat and calorie content, but also the sugar content. Sugar can also have a detrimental effect on our teeth. Several fruit juices are very high in sugar, so if you are consuming them it can be better to dilute them with some water. To find out more have a look at this - http://beingfitandhealthyrocks.com/Sugar-Detox
  18. The Glycemic Index (GI) was invented to help diabetics know how quickly glucose from certain foods is absorbed into the bloodstream. Click on this link for a further explanation and a list of foods in each category – Low GI, Medium GI, High GI
  19. Calories although a useful guide to help dieting does not take into account the nutritional value of food. For example a 50g (2oz) bowl of no-added sugar Muesli has around 180 calories, whereas a 30g packet of chips has around 160 calories. It is obvious to us that the Muesli has many more nutritional benefits that the packet of chips, which is high in saturated fat and salt.
    Although this is an extreme example if you are following a calorie-controlled diet it is important to make food choices not based on the calorie amount alone, but also on the nutritional value of the food.
  20. You have done so well to get this far, here is a video from Sesame Street – Cookie monster singing about healthy food. Grab the kids and take a couple of minutes out and remember your childhood.

     

     

     

     

  21. Anti-Oxidants are vitamin and minerals contained in foods that are able to protect our body's cells from some of the harmful substances we produce naturally. For a list of which foods these are look here.
  22. If you reach a plateau in your dieting efforts then try creating a food diary. In it write down everything you eat and how much. It is important that you are honest; I mean whom are you cheating here? – Yourself. By doing this for a week it should help you to see where you can cut down and improve.
  23. Portion Control is another reason many of us add a few pounds here and there. Although we may be having a healthy diet, we are just eating too much. Our bodies weight is just a matter of maths. Each day the body uses a certain amount of calories carrying out what it needs to, to keep us alive. If we put in more than we need, what the body does not use is turned into fat. We notice this excess on the scales and by the fact our clothes become tighter. By controlling our portions we can put a stop to this gradual weight gain. A good story that covered this exact topic can be found here - http://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/food/portions-too-much-of-a-good-thing/story-fneuz8zj-1226610723547
  24. If you are exercising and eating right, but find the scales are not moving in the right direction have a read of this article to find out why - http://beingfitandhealthyrocks.com/why-your-scales-are-not-your-best-friend-when-your-following-a-weight-loss-plan/
  25. To find out what a portion of certain foods consists of have a look at this great resource.
  26. In our healthy eating plan we should all try to include at least two portions of fish a week. This is because fish is high in protein and oily fish such as Salmon is a great source of the macronutrient Omega-3 Fatty Acids
    Take a look at this for a tasty, healthy low-fat fish recipe.
  27. If you lead a busy working life, try making some time at the weekend to have a cooking session. Make a large portion of your favorite dish such as Lasagna, curry, and cottage pie and then freeze it. This will help to save money, as buying food in bigger portions is cheaper then buying it in smaller one. It will also mean that during the week you can eat good, healthy, nutritionally packed food. All you have to do is each evening take out a portion of food and put it into the fridge to defrost. By the time you get home from work you have an instant ready-meal that you can pop in the microwave for a couple of minutes. All you have to do then is stick some vegetables on to cook like peas, mange tout, carrots, broccoli and your done. To save time on the veg you could have frozen portions of that too.
  28. As you go through your daily life your body will gradually acquire toxins. Therefore a couple of times a year take a couple of days out to detox. This helps clear out these stored toxins and flush out the Kidneys. It is like giving your body a spring clean. There are several ways to do this from a juice cleanse to smoothies. A good book I can recommend is Detox: The Master Cleanse Diet by Nancy N. Wilson. Click here for reviews, rating and pricing.
  29. There are some foods called negative calorie foods. These have fewer calories in them than are required to process them. 
  30. If you are trying to lose weight, then finding the right diet plan for you can make all the difference to your success. This article looks at the differences between three of the most popular ones - Paleo diet, Mediterranean diet and Atkins diet. Have a read and discover which one could be right for you.

Being Fit and Healthy Rocks! - Healthy Body

  1. Healthy Body - Exercise for being fit and healthyExercise is essential for maintaining a healthy body. We should all be doing 30 minutes at least 3 times a week. For example take a look at this to see the calories burned doing household chores and this for the amount of calories burned during exercise.
  2. To get the full benefit of exercise we need to have both a Cardio element and a resistance, strength-training element. This will work the heart and keep us toned.
  3. There is a type of exercise called High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). This has been found to be very effective for weight loss, by basically training hard for 5 minutes then resting for a minute or two. For a fuller explanation and a sample plan, check this article out – HIIT Workout
  4. Strength training can be useful to help maintain muscle tone. By building muscles you can burn more fat, as muscles need energy to move. See here for an example strength training plan.
  5. Cardio Training is great for improving heart health and lung capacity and thus allowing us to stay fit and healthy as we go through life. For a sample routine and more information have a look at this - http://beingfitandhealthyrocks.com/cardio-workout-plan/
  6. Running can be a very good exercise to take up. If you are interested in taking it further or have the ambition to run in long races make sure you click on this link to discover a Half Marathon training plan.
  7. Kickboxing for women is an amazing workout to do for both strength and for cardio. Check this article out to discover more.
  8. Yoga is one of the best things you can do for flexibility and suppleness. Click on this to find out how to use Yoga for relaxation and toning.
  9. When exercising it is important to rest. Muscles need recovery time to be able to perform at maximum efficiency. Go here for a guide to a post workout recovery plan.
  10. Looking after you skin can be a sign of a healthy body. Click on this for information on how to treat dry skin.
  11. Knowing whether or not you are overweight can be a great indication of how healthy you are and if you need to start taking action. One quick way to know is to work out your BMI (Body Mass Index). Follow this link for a BMI calculator for both Men and Women. Also take a look at this chart to help you work out your weight in different units - http://beingfitandhealthyrocks.com/weight-conversion-chart/
  12. Women, especially can be concerned that when exercising they will start to look like a man as their muscles grow bigger. This can't really happen as women do not have the necessary amount of the hormone Testoesterone to do this. Have a read of this article on how to lose weight and gain muscle for more information.
  13. When working out it is a good idea to keep track of how hard you are working. This can be done easily with a heart rate monitor watch. These show you your heart rate at the different stages of your exercise some even show how many calories you are burning. Have a look here for a simple comparison guide.

Being Fit and Healthy Rocks! – Healthy Mind

  1. Healthy MindThroughout our busy lives we are bombarded by things we need to do, to remember to find out and to work out. All these jumbles of disjointed thoughts lead to a cluttered mind and to stress. One of the best ways to clear our minds and thus de-stress is to meditate. For an introduction and a guide to how to start have a look at this – Meditation for Beginners, all you need to know.
  2. One of the problems we have in life is that we never seem to have enough time to do what we want to do or what we need to get done. Learning some simple Time Management techniques can really help us to literally add more hours to our day.
  3. Sleep is a very important element to being fit and healthy. We all need at least 8 hours per night. To find out why have a look at this article.
  4. Having the right mindset can work wonders for your confidence. Believing in yourself and that you can accomplish what you set out to achieve will make a huge difference to your life. Some great people to read are Jim Rohn and Robert Collier. A good introductory book is Jack Canfield – The Success Principles(TM): How to Get from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be. For ratings, reviews and prices have a look here.
  5. Taking action towards what you most desire in life will leave you feeling satisfied and thus happier when you go to bed. By having a goal in life be it a monthly, 6 month or 5 year one does not matter, but taking action towards it each and every day will do wonders for you. This could be to do with weight-loss, having for a holiday or working towards a qualification. Whatever it is write it down, stick it somewhere where you will see it and do something to achieve it each day.
  6. Make time in your life to do something that makes you happy. Be it something small like rewarding yourself for a job completed to hugging your partner or children. It could be going to the beach, or buying something new, or going for a picnic. Whatever it is make sure you do it, it will make you happier and more relaxed.
  7. To keep your brain active try doing some mental exercises. A good example can be found here – http://www.doctoroz.com/videos/stay-mentally-fit-brain-games.
  8. Deal with problems and issues as the come up. Do not let them fester, as they will become larger than life and prey on your mind leading to worry and stress. It may even start to give you sleepless nights. Write down your worries and next to each one write down an action step for dealing with it. Then go and take action and tackle it. You will feel much better if you do, believe me.

Hopefully by going through this guide and taking the time to have a look at the related articles you will be well on your way to fully knowing that Being Fit and Healthy Rocks! Here is to your success!

Let us know in the comments below what you do each day to stay fit and healthy.

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