Get your flavonoids! They’re good for your heart! Eat lots of fruits and vegetables for those.
Make sure you get enough Omega 3 fats in your diet; they’re good fats and can reduce cholesterol and ease the metabolism of bad fats. Salmon, flax seeds, walnuts, and soybeans are good sources of those.
Make sure you get enough dairy in your diet; protein, calcium, and Vitamin D are all needed for strong bones and will help avoid degenerative disease like osteoporosis. Cottage cheese, yogurt, and milk will cover you there.
Has it occurred to anyone else that if we actually followed all of the nutritional guidance pumped into the media by food companies, supplement companies, our government, and well-intentioned fitness professionals, that we’d all look like Santa?
The missing ‘ingredient’, of course is exercise.
While reading a few things written by other Fitness Professionals around Holiday indulgences this morning, and the creative ways they’ve suggested to restrict calories and abstain from some of your favorite foods during the holidays (I’ve been guilty of these suggestions too), it suddenly occurred to me … duh …
Because what’s the point of even attending a party or preparing a special meal if you can’t fully enjoy it! So, while there are lots of great reasons for exercising, THE MOST SIGNIFICANT BENEFIT OF EXERCISE could very well be that it simply allows us to eat more! Most of us love to eat, and a lot of us exercise just so that we can eat more!
But without exercise, most of us would be obese within 6 months if we consumed all of the food needed for proper nutrition. Or, you could pay thousands of dollars per year on organic supplements, though even the best manufactured nutrients fall far short on nutrient quality when compared to natural food sources.
It’s well documented that exercise alone:
- Improves your heart health
- Reduces stress
- Reduces blood pressure
- Fights anxiety
- Fights depression
- Increases your energy levels; and
- Simply enriches your lifestyle.
HOWEVER, IS IT POSSIBLE THAT THE MOST SIGNIFICANT CONTRIBUTION OF EXERCISE TO YOUR HEALTH IS THAT IT ALLOWS YOU TO EAT MORE, AND THEREFORE GET BETTER NUTRITION?
And then there’s Hydration. Water is the body’s primary means of cleansing itself by flushing toxins out the back (bottom) door. Further, proper hydration improves digestive efficiency, reduces blood pressure, and improves the appearance of skin, nails, and hair.
We’ve all heard that we should drink 8 glasses of water each day. You know what, that’s a lot of water! It actually takes significant, conscious effort to consume that much water on a daily basis. But crank out a few hot cardio intervals, or knock down one of our HEAT programs, or blast through 35 sets in 45 minutes, and you’ll have 20 ounces through your body before you event think about food!
The primary vessel we drive, our bodies, frequently requires exercise induced thirst to get enough fluids in on a regular basis.
So, there you have it! Never mind that exercise improves your health and reduces the risk of acquiring all types of disease and illness. Exercise primarily gives us the privilege to eat and drink more and be healthier for it.
So, it’s baah humbug to all the Fitness Pros out there with tips on avoiding calories this holiday season! I say go ahead and eat!
Just make sure you exercise plenty too!
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