Is it Safe to Lose 10 Pounds in One Week?

The short answer is yes but only under certain circumstances. Starving yourself for a week might result in short term results but it is dangerous and generally the weight will pile back on anyway. Crash or starvation diets can have negative effects on your mind, leading to eat disorders.  Let’s talk about the healthiest ways for you to lose weight fast.

Rules for Losing Weight Fast

There are constraints around who can successfully lose 10 pounds in a week:

  1. Have excessive weight to lose
  2. Moderate fitness levels
  3. Have the time to dedicate

Have the Excessive Weight

If you are already lean – it is impossible to lose 10 pounds in a week. You must have enough extra weight for your body to shed. For those carrying more fat, this is a great way to kick start weight loss but don’t expect these results week after week.

Moderate Fitness Levels

Exercise is necessary for fast weight loss so you will need to be able to handle general cardio and resistance training.

Having the Time to Dedicate

Time constraints are a factor in weight gain itself – we are tired and stressed from our busy lives so we don’t exercise and we don’t eat properly. In order to drop the pounds, you need to prioritize your weight loss goals by having time to cook and work out.

How Do I Lose The Weight?

A right mixture of diet and exercise is the key. You’ll need to work out every day and eat in a calorie deficit to achieve the goal.

In terms of your diet:

  • Stay away from simple carbohydrates. This helps you flush extra water from your system which reduces bloating and weight. Simple carbohydrates also cause blood sugar spikes, releasing the insulin hormone which in turn encourages fat storage.
  • Start the day with a glass of warm water and lemon juice. This will wake up your metabolism. Pair that with a simple meal of fruit.
  • Drink black coffee. This works to suppress your appetite and can also rev up your metabolism.
  • Eat lean proteins. It will help fill you up for longer without the extra calories in fat. It is also muscle-sparing so your weight loss will come mainly from water and fat.

Exercise helps you burn more calories than you are eating – creating that deficit that allows you to lose weight. Here are some exercise tips:

  • Walk everywhere. Moving around more often will keep your metabolism humming along rather than being sedentary for long periods of the day. The extra exercise will help you drop the pounds.
  • Lift weights. Heavy resistance training will burn more calories than reps with lighter weights. It will see a lift in metabolism even hours after your workout. While heavy resistance training over time will lead to weight gain – it is healthy muscle weight not pounds of fat.
  • Don’t over-exercise. While you need to exercise everyday to achieve the weight loss goal, listen to your body and don’t over tax yourself.

weight loss infographic

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Herbs And Spices To Help With Weight Loss

We use herbs and spices to give our meals a flavor boost but did you know that they also offer excellent health benefits? They are a rich source of antioxidants, minerals, vitamins and hold unique medicinal properties.

All herbs and spices are plant materials which have unique properties and health benefits to offer. These benefits include anti inflammatory, anti aging and weight loss.

In fact herbs and spices are one of the most potent natural sources of antioxidants available. Polyphenol antioxidants can reduce inflammation by bonding free radicals in the body. There is potential for these antioxidants to have anti aging effects on the skin. A study published in the Journal of Medicinal Foods found correlations between the phenol content in spices and its ability to inhibit glycation and the toxic end products which made phenols an effective preventer of heart disease and premature aging effects.

For example cinnamon has phenol levels of 18% of dry weight. Compare that to antioxidant super-food blueberries which have a phenol level of 5% of dry weight.

Certain herbs and spices can also help you maintain a healthy weight by boosting your metabolism and promoting weight loss.

See the list below for 10 great herbs and spices:

  1. Ginseng

Ginseng is a species of slow growing perennial plants. The herb we use is the fleshy root of this plant which is dried and used in teas, cooking or sometimes energy drinks. Ginseng’s benefits include boosting energy levels and speeding up your metabolism. The Panax Ginseng species has correlations with weight loss benefits. A study where obese, diabetic mice were given panax ginseng extracts for 12 days resulted in significant weight loss and an improvement in their insulin sensitivity.

  1. Cayenne Pepper

 Capsaicin is the compound that gives cayenne peppers its spicy flavor. This is a thermogenic substance which causes a temporary increase in your natural thermogensis process. This is where your body is burning through its energy stores to create heat – in other words, using your stored heat as energy to warm your body. Research suggests that the consumption of thermogenic foods can boost your metabolism by up to 5% and increase fat burn by up to 16%.

Spicy foods have also been known to trigger feelings of fullness and satiety meaning you will eat less, aiding in weight loss goals.

weight loss herbs

  1. Cinnamon

We’ve already discussed how cinnamon is a powerful antioxidant but this spice also has benefits from boosting your metabolism as well as blood sugar regulation.

Studies using cinnamon have found that it reduces blood sugar levels, LDL cholesterols and triglycerides in those with type two diabetes. Cinnamon was also found to increase glucose metabolism by 20 times to normal rate which is a significant indicator around your body’s ability to regulate blood sugar. This is great news for diabetics who should consider eating cinnamon or taking a supplement to benefit their overall health.

Proper regulation of blood sugar helps with weight loss and maintenance as high blood sugars result in extra insulin in the blood. This promotes the storage of fat, particularly around the stomach area.

  1. Black Pepper 

 Black Pepper has a variety of health benefits. The main flavor of black pepper comes from a compound called piperine which also inhibits the formation of new fat cells. Black pepper also has the capsaicin compound that cayenne pepper has, which boosts your metabolism. Studies have shown that consumption of black pepper extracts have burnt as many calories as a 20 minute walk.

On top of those benefits, black pepper increases the bio-availability of nutrients in other foods. This refers to how well your body can absorb the various vitamin and minerals in your food so this makes black pepper a wonderfully healthy addition to your diet.

  1. Mustard

 The mustard plant is a species in the cruciferous family which also includes Brussels sprouts, cabbage and broccoli. It’s the mustard seed holds the most valuable health benefits. Those seeds can boost your overall metabolic rate by 25% resulting in a more effective rate of burning calories. 3/5th’s of a teaspoon of mustard seeds each day can increase your calorie burned by 45 calories per hour.

  1. Turmeric

Turmeric is the yellow-orange colored spice often found in curry based dishes. The active compound in turmeric is called curcumin and holds a variety of health benefits. Studies have shown it reduces the formation of fat cells and tissues by stemming the blood vessels needed to build the fat tissue. Turmeric can help prevent body fat percentages and overall weight gain

The curcumin compound is also helpful in treating obesity related chronic illnesses like insulin resistance, hyperglycemia and other inflammatory symptoms. Curcumin interacts with specific proteins in certain cells to suppress transduction pathways in the body which can reverse the symptoms listed above. See here for the study source.

  1. Dandelions

Dandelions were once a popular edible plant, known for its nutritional benefits however it doesn’t tend to be eaten any more. You can actually eat all parts of the dandelion plant. The plant is extremely high in fiber, meaning it slows your digestion which helps you feel fuller for longer. This prevents overeating and helps with weight loss.

The Dandelion plant also contains therapeutic compounds like Taraxacin, Taracerin, inulin and levulin. These compounds are a diuretic and cleanse the liver.This plant is high in vitamins and minerals like beta carotene and vitamin K1 which normalize blood sugar and reduce cholesterol.

  1. Ginger

 Ginger is another spice which has thermogenic properties, like cayenne and black pepper. This can boost your metabolism and encourages higher caloric burn. Ginger can also help to soothe and relax your digestive tract, hence why we drink ginger teas when we have an upset stomach. Using this spice more regularly can help you with weight management.

  1. Cardamom

This is an aromatic spice with a spicy but slightly sweet flavor. It is popular in the Ayurveda system of holistic and natural healing originating from India. Once again this is a thermogenic herb to support your immune system.

  1. Cumin

Cumin is a delicious spice with a long history of medicinal uses. Cumin helps support your digestion and can improve glycemic control for those with type 2 diabetes.

Cumin inhibits weight gain because it is high in Phytosterols – a naturally occurring substance that is similar to cholesterol in its function and structure. Therefore it prevents the absorption of harmful cholesterols through your digestive tract. This is the reason given for its weight loss effect.

 

 

Keep Your Skin Youthful With These Healthy Foods

How can you achieve a youthful glow, fight the signs of aging and say goodbye to acne? Eating the right foods is holistically good for your body but the list of foods below have direct benefits to the health of your skin.

Food that is beneficial for your skin

Olive Oil

A 2012 study analyzed the diet of 1264 women tracked their consumption of olive oil compared to signs of aging. Women with a higher consumption of olive oil – more than 2 teaspoons a day saw 31% fewer aging sings compared to women who ate less than 1 teaspoon. This is because about 75% of the fat in olive oil are monounsaturated fatty acids which can play a part in keeping skin youthful. The antioxidant polipehnols also exsist in olive oil which reduce harmful free radicals in the body.

Yellow Bell Peppers

The British Journal of Nutritional released a study which found that people who ate more than 250 grams of green and yellow vegetables had fewer wrinkles, especially in the crow’s feet area around the eyes in comparison to those who ate less than 69 grams. The average yellow bell pepper is 190 grams and contain the antioxidants which fight aging free radicals and can support the health of your skin and your overall body.

Dark Chocolate

This delicious treat is also great for your complexion. Dark chocolate holds cocoa flavanols which are an excellent antioxidant. This helps to hydrate the skin and improve circulation. A study focusing on women who drank a mixture containing cocoa powder high in flavanol resulted in a reduction of skin roughness and scaliness compared to a control group.

This was the equilivant of 3.5 ounces of chocolate however keep in mind, this is very high in calories. However chocolate usually is loaded with refined sugar, the healthiest way is to go for cacao powder and mix it with a healthy sweetener or add it to your smoothie.

Tomatoes

Tomatoes can provide sun protection benefits. Sun damage is a one of the largest contributors to premature skin aging. A study in 2008 concluded that people who consumed 5 tablespoons of tomato paste and 1 tablespoon of olive oil over 12 weeks had a 33% higher protection from sunburn compared to a control group who only ate the dose of olive oil.

Tomatoes have high levels of the antioxidant lycopene, especially in cooked tomatoes which helps improve the skins natural SPF. However this is not a replacement for actually using sunscreen but rather a boost to your skins natural defenses.

Fish

Fish high is omega-3 fatty acids should be on your menu. Sardines in particular pack 1.5 grams of omega-3’s in just a 3.5 ounce serve making it one of the best choices. Salmon is another plentiful source of this helpful fat. It helps your skin by reducing inflammation – often a main driver for acne.

Green Tea

In 2011 there was a study published in the Journal of Nutrition which found those who drank a beverage with green tea polyphenols each day for 12 weeks resulted in more elastic and smooth skin, as well as up to 25% less sun damage when exposed to UV light compared to the control group. Green tea is high in antioxidants like EGCG which also helps boost blood flow and therefore better delivery of nutrients to the skin to improve your complexion.

Oatmeal

Not only is it a whole grain, oatmeal is a highly nutritious breakfast, it also provides great benefits for your skin. Refined sugars and simple carbs increase insulin levels in your blood stream and increase production of a hormone called androgens. These hormones cause your sebaceous glands to secrete more oil, trapping dirt in the pores and causing imperfections. Switching to complex carbs like whole grain oatmeal helps balance your blood sugar and reduce those hormones in your body for a clear complexion.

Kale

This superfood is one of the best sources of lutein and zeaxanthin which are nutrients that work to absorb neutralize free radicals caused from UV light. One cup of kale also provides you with more than 100% of your daily intake for vitamin C and A which both help to firm the skin.

Orange Peel

The University of Arizona studied people who said they ate plenty of citrus fruit, juice and peels. Those who ate peels had a 33% less likelihood of having squamous cell carcinoma while the juice and fruit did not have an effect. They credit the limonene which is a compound found in the oil of the peel to offer UV protection.

Walnuts

This is a nut that is expectionally high in omega-3’s, which offers a meat-free source of this fatty acid. Walnuts contain an certain omega-3 called alpha-linolenic acid. A deficiency in this particular fat can result in eczema, or a form of dry, scaly skin.

Grass feed beef

High in protein at 30 grams per 3.5 ounce serving, grass feed beef helps your skin by providing the building blocks for collagen and elastin tissues. These keep skin tight and prevent wrinkles.

Water

Water obviously works to keep you hydrated which in turn keeps your skin plump and youthful. Being in the habit of drinking water also means you will avoid excess sugars found in other drinks like juice or soda’s. When your blood sugars get too high, sugar can attach to proteins in collagen which cause the skin to sag and wrinkle.

Almond Milk

This is the perfect alternative to dairy. Dairy is highly inflammatory so it can aggravate acne, rashes and aging. Non dairy, non-sweetened milks like almond milk are a better option.

Soy

An option for vegetarians is soy. A study which gave a small group of middle aged Japanese women 40mg of aglycone, which is a compound in soy saw they have fewer fine lines and better skin elasticity within the 12 week study than the control group.

The aglycone contained isoflavone which can stop collagen from breaking down in the body which is an effective way to prevent sagging and wrinkles. You can eat the same amount of isoflavones in 3 ounces of tempeh, 6 ounces of tofu or 1 ounce of dry toasted soybeans.

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