Four Major Reasons Why Processed Foods Are Unhealthy

When we think about the word ‘processed’ it is best to clarify what we actually mean in the context of this article. We all know that there is some processing that is done to natural foods to get them from the plant to where humans are able to buy them to take home to consume. This would include the processing of fruit from the tree and into the shop or market so we can buy it. It also includes the processing of meat so that we do not have to buy the whole cow, but can pick up cuts from the supermarket, or the process of making milk into butter, cream and other useful dairy items. The kinds of foods that we are talking about here are foods that are processed using chemicals, which in essence de-nature them to the point where a lot of the goodness is removed.

Low Nutrient Content

One of the main reasons why it is best to avoid processed foods is that they have a much lower nutrient content than if we ate them the way nature intended, as raw and unprocessed as possible. The fact that there has been a significant rise in cancer during recent times could very well have much to do with the fact that people are eating a lot more foods, but with a lower nutrient content. So their bodies are spending a lot of good energy processing the food, but not really getting any fuel that the body can use.

High Sugar Content

A lot of the ‘fast foods’ that you buy either at the supermarket or at the fast food ‘restaurants’ are extremely high in sugar and carbohydrates. They are carefully engineered to look and taste like real food, (and some of them are such a good copy that it really can be difficult not to be fooled). However, often they have a much higher sugar content than regular foods. One of the reasons for this is that the companies that produce them want you to become addicted so that you keep coming back for more. The best way to eat food is as nature intended, pure and unadulterated, to avoid hidden sugars that cause a variety of health issues if continually eaten over long periods of time.

Artificial Flavourings

Anything that has ‘artificial flavourings’ basically means that it has chemical additives that are produced in laboratories to create the illusion of being the food that it is pretending to taste like. When you see a product that says ‘chicken flavoured’, it is very unlikely that there is actually any chicken involved in the product. To get this amazing flavour out of thin air, as you can imagine, takes a delicate balance of difference chemicals, and therefore, not something that will be doing any good for your body, or your mind.

High Fat Content

Most processed foods have a high trans fat content; this is the bad hydrogenated fat, which clogs arteries and often leads to heart disease. Not only will they not be doing your body any favours but can also become addictive, which means your body will need more of them. We all know that cholesterol clogs up our arteries but do we really know how much fat is actually in that ‘low fat’ microwave meal that we have chosen from the supermarket freezer section? And what sort of preservatives are in it to allow it to be kept for so long?

If you are playing sport, the best thing you can do for your body is to put good fuel in, so that you can get the best out of it. At Salisbury Super Sport, we encourage our players to choose the highest quality and most nutritious foods and snacks, because we know that good health requires a holistic approach – mind, body and spirit.

Health Risks Associated With A Sedentary Lifestyle

The human body, at its best, is a magnificent self-regulating machine with all parts working amongst themselves to produce the many different chemical reactions that are required to keep everything in optimal condition. Science and history tell us that being the hunter-gatherers that we are, by nature, our body is designed for an active lifestyle, where we are on the move throughout the day, and resting at night.

The modern way of life for most human beings though, is far from active, as we spend a majority of time sitting in air-conditioned cars, offices, or standing in the one position for hours at a time while at work. This can cause the machine of the human body to not run as smoothly as it could and over time a sedentary lifestyle can contribute to illness and disease in the body and mind.

Weakened Heart

As we all know, the human heart is designed to pump blood around the body, day and night. No matter what we do, our heart is constantly working at this, regulating the body’s systems by ensuring that the blood is running smoothly and that there is enough oxygen getting to all the different cells.

An issue with a sedentary lifestyle that causes a weakened heart is that when we are not using the body the heart gets used to the conditions of that lifestyle. It adapts according to how hard it has to work, and over time this can become its default setting. Unfortunately, when we do decide to get moving, and our heart is used to not working very hard, this can cause problems for it, as it needs to work a lot harder to do what it needs to do.

Weight Gain

For a magnificent piece of machinery such as the human body, that is designed for running, jumping, exploring and being active, a sedentary lifestyle is eventually going to cause weight gain, especially if you are not eating well. An active lifestyle keeps the body’s metabolism at its optimum by flushing out toxins and using up the energy that would become fat, before it settles in and makes itself at home around your hips, stomach and other areas.

Mental Health

As many of our healthy sports people from Salisbury Super Sports can attest to, your mental health can be greatly affected by a sedentary lifestyle. The more oxygen you have moving through your body and the more active you are, the better you will feel. Not only does activity produce endorphins, but getting out of the same four walls and inspiring the imagination is like a balm for tired souls and melancholy minds.

Finding The Right Balance Between Diet and Exercise

There is not a doubt in the world that getting at least 30 minutes exercise per day is not only good for your body but good for your soul.

A body craves movement.

Yes your mind might tell you that sitting on the couch eating popcorn and watching your favourite soap is so much more pleasurable then going for a walk in the park or participating in one of the great social team sports we offer here at Salisbury Super Sports.

The fact is, that is a lie. If you give yourself a fighting chance to actually go out and be part of an exercise regime you will feel better and actually start to look forward to your daily exercise bouts.

To complement your exercise regime you must eat and drink correctly. If you are expending more energy, the bottom line is that your body will need more fuel. No, you will not put on weight if you find that happy balance.

Fuel In Energy Out

There are a lot of fads out there designed to attract your attention and well-earned dollars so be wary of celebrity endorsed products that are “full of wholesome goodness”.

To give your body the best chance it has to process the environmental onslaught, you need to do a couple of things.

Drink Water

First thing in the morning give your liver a boost and drink a litre of water. If you add the juice of a lemon to it you will not only boost your liver but supercharge it.

A good rule of thumb for water consumption is to drink a litre of water for every 22 kg’s of weight and a litre of water for every hour of exercise.

Why not try this suggestion – Drink a big glass of water and then every time you go to the loo, have another.

Eat Fresh Food

It is really important to fuel your body with living foods and not dead food such as cooked or packaged food. The additives alone can cause a chemical nightmare in your system let alone the loss of any vital nutrients.

The confusion comes from being told you need X amount of calories a day to support your body. Calories and nutrients are two different things.

The sad truth is that whilst some foods will benefit you if they are cooked, such as tomatoes releasing lycopene, the majority of foods are best eaten in the state that they were provided.

Plenty of leafy green vegetables as well as the colours of the rainbow in other vegetables and fruit will soon have your skin glowing and your body revving.

 

The Importance of Eating Breakfast

Skipping breakfast is one of the biggest mistakes that you can make on any given day. Time and time again, you’ll hear people espouse the benefits of eating this first meal of the day. Why exactly is breakfast so important, though? There are many prime reasons, but breakfast is especially important for anyone who plans on engaging in physical activity throughout their day.

Giving You the Boost that You Need

Whether you plan on enjoying some indoor netball Brisbane or other activities, starting the day out right with a healthy breakfast is always a smart move. Studies have shown that people who eat breakfast tend to perform much better throughout the day than those who skip it. After sleeping all night, your body needs protein and nourishment to really get going. You’ll enjoy increased stamina, endurance and strength during the day when you make breakfast a top priority each morning.

Eat Less Throughout the Day

Since it’s easy to skip breakfast, many people are under the impression that doing so is a great way to shave some calories off of their daily diet. In reality, though, you’re more likely to eat a lot more throughout the day when you go without breakfast. By starting your day off without a nourishing meal, your body feels deprived. You’re bound to find yourself reaching for one snack after another throughout the day. When you have a healthy meal in the morning, your body feels satisfied and you’re a lot less likely to give in to temptation.

Enhance Your Concentration

Being hungry can wreak havoc on your concentration. Whether it’s at work or at school, being attentive and clear-headed is important. Breakfast helps your brain get moving right away each morning, ensuring that you have the mental energy and clarity to focus on whatever comes your way. In turn, you’ll have a much more successful and fulfilling day. Furthermore, you’re less likely to feel stressed or overwhelmed. All around, breakfast helps you start off your day on the right foot.

Stick with Something Healthy

While eating breakfast is important, it shouldn’t consist of greasy, sugary or fat-laden foods. Ideally, your breakfast should be chock full of protein and other good nutrients. Things like yogurt, oatmeal and fruit are all excellent choices. Granola is another sure bet, as is whole wheat toast. A cup of tea or coffee can help kick-start your day, but try to include a glass of freshly squeezed juice to give your body additional vitamins and minerals. While you shouldn’t gouge yourself during breakfast, you should make sure that you feel satisfied and ready to take on the day. Ultimately, this small step can make a world of difference.

Salisbury Super Sports Joins the Coffee Quandary

Is Coffee Harmful or Healthy?

A cup of coffee after a hectic game of indoor cricket at the Salisbury Super Sports club can be just as refreshing as a can of soda or a glass of ice-cold water for some. Although for many years coffee has had a bad reputation regarding its health or lack of health benefits, many coffee drinkers maintain that a cup of this beverage is the elixir of life.

However, some, like Miriam Young, a Chinese Medicine herbalist, believes that “Coffee depletes the immune system and exhausts the adrenal glands” along with other negative reactions.

These strong views are shared by thousands of anti-coffee drinkers and to be fair, it is known that too much coffee can be bad for you. However, is caffeine taken is small doses really harmful? Will a daily intake of a couple of mugs of coffee create a state of dehydration?

The caffeine in coffee reaches our tissues within a few minutes. High doses of caffeine, especially if drunk by someone who doesn’t usually drink coffee, can interfere with normal body functions.

So, why do people still drink their daily doses of coffee? Its smell and taste has become an important start to a stressful day in many lives. Even china (the home of tea plantations) where tea drinking is an art, is beginning to realise that its community is turning to coffee as an alternative.

Certainly, caffeine might be detrimental to our health if consumed in large quantities but the latest research now reports that small daily doses of caffeine (aka coffee) can be beneficial. Latest test results indicate that daily coffee drinkers have over a 40% less threat of developing cancer of the liver. Studies also conclude that regular cups of coffee help to reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. According to the American Diabetes Association, “In this study of U.S. women aged 26-46 years at baseline, consumption of two or more cups of coffee per day was associated with a substantially lower risk of type 2 diabetes during 10 years of follow-up”.

Coffee consumption in Australia is also a growing market. However, coffee drinkers in this country are beginning to prefer pure coffee instead of the instant variety. People now enjoy brewing coffee in their own homes. Nevertheless, over a billion cups of coffee are still sold every year in restaurants and coffee bars, with cappuccino sales heading all other coffee beverages.

Jeff, a regular visitor to the Salisbury Super Sports Cafe, says, “After my girlfriend finishes her game of indoor netball, we enjoy our cup of coffee after a great meal”. Possibly the old adage – “everything in moderation” – is the best way to approach your next cup of coffee.

Stay Slim and Healthy on a Budget

Many overweight and unhealthy people have numerous excuses for not losing weight. At the top of the list we hear “I don’t have the time”. The second excuse is “It’s too expensive to eat healthily”.

There is a misconception that in order to look great we have to buy ‘special’ food. Inexpensive, low calorie meals can be prepared even by using leftovers. Nor is it necessary to prepare extra meals for one person. Slimming just requires a little planning and, combined with some exercise or sport, you will be on your way to regaining your once slim and healthy body. If you dislike outdoor activities, indoor sports might be the answer, especially if you prefer team sports.

The word ‘diet’ often puts people off. Perhaps keeping to a healthy eating plan is more encouraging. In fact, a slimming diet shouldn’t be all that different from the meals that you already prepare for your family. You can eat similar meals but avoid piling too many carbohydrates and fatty foods on to your plate. Remember that carbohydrates such as bread, potatoes, spaghetti and rice are not all that high in kilojoules. It is what you add to them that creates the problem.

Let’s take an example. 100 grams of white rice contains 130 kcal/554 kilojoules, which won’t break your diet bank. However, as soon as the rice is fried, the kilojoules are almost doubled. So, where do the extra kilojoules come from in this example? Fat! We all tend to consume too much fatty food. A breakfast pileup of fried eggs, bacon, sausage and mushrooms with a couple of slices of thickly buttered toast will probably provide your quota of kilojoules for the day.

We all need a certain amount of fat in order to keep healthy, but meat already contains fat so it isn’t necessary to fry bacon and sausage in even more fat. Whether we cook in oil or butter, remember that both are high in calories, although it is healthier to use oil. Butter contains saturated fats, which is not healthy if consumed in high quantities. By becoming aware of what we eat combined with daily walking exercise or other forms of team sports, we can soon regain healthy bodies.

If you feel hungry between meals, don’t grab the cookie jar. Rather keep some vegetables in your fridge. Carrots, tomatoes and celery are just a few items that will stave off your hunger. Low calorie soup is also an excellent substitute for high fat food. The idea is to take one day at a time and after a while you will get into the habit of living a healthier lifestyle.

You Are What You Eat

We’ve been told so many times, we are what we eat. It’s an old adage but it’s as true today as it was then. Simply put, eating healthy foods results in a healthy body, and, on the flipside, eating unhealthy meals results in a weak or sickly body. The more food you take in, the heavier you become. Maintaining a healthy diet will only be successful if one also makes it a habit to exercise regularly.

A healthy diet is a balanced diet. This consists of more fruits, vegetables and grain food products, just the right amount of meat, and the least amount of fats. Of course, eating a healthy, balanced diet must be complemented by regular exercise. Engaging in regular sports such as indoor cricket or netball can help keep the body healthy by burning calories that might otherwise turn into excess fats and by strengthening the muscles and maintaining healthy blood circulation.

To keep the body healthy, there needs to be discipline in food intake. Although it is more tempting and enjoyable to indulge in plenty of sumptuous, fatty meals, it always bodes well to stick to moderate eating. As well as not overeating, there is much need to lean more towards vegetables, fruits and fibre-rich food products. This group of foods provide the needed vitamins and minerals for the body, as well as energy from starch and fibre-rich foods. Fibre, which is found in abundance in whole grain bread and cereals, is essential for a healthy bowel and is acknowledged to be effective in minimising the chances of developing heart diseases. Discipline is also needed in reducing the intake of fatty foods, especially those containing saturated fats.

People who live in the city te nd to eat more junk food and processed food, the appeal of which is that they are quick, convenient, or easy to prepare, therefore keeping pace with the fast life. City people also tend to get less exercise as they walk less and do more sedentary activities. This type of diet and living brings down the overall health quality of people.

It is a good thing that cultural changes are happening and there are more and more developments to encourage people to live healthy. There is more information about the right foods to eat and those to be wary about. There are also many initiatives designed to persuade people to exercise. For instance, health facilities are adjusting to the lifestyle of modern people to enable them to exercise more. There are more sport facilities that cater to the interests of the Average Joe who wants to play their favourite sport in a social setting. Beginners and amateurs can now enjoy being healthy by playing almost any kind of sport under cover, from indoor handball and indoor netball, to indoor cricket and even soccer.

Eating healthy can be very challenging but the rewards are worth it. Coupled with regular exercise, a healthy diet results in a better quality of life and, with a reduced chance of developing dangerous disease, a longer one! It pays to stick to eating healthy – after all, we are what we eat.

The Right Way to Lose Weight Permanently

Erma Bombeck once said, “I have been on a constant diet for the last two decades. I’ve lost a total of 789 pounds. By all accounts, I should be hanging from a charm bracelet.” The very fact that Erma was not a reed thin should illustrate the inherent failure associated with fad diets. All of us have, at one time or another tried a crash diet. Every year we are bombarded with more new diets and funky exercise machines that promise that we can lose weight practically overnight with little effort. How much money have you spent on these miracle cures?

The truth be told, there is no overnight cure for being overweight. Did it take you two weeks to gain 15 kilograms or did the weight just creep up on you. I will bet it crept up on you, didn’t it? Weight is sneaky that way. One week your jeans fit, then they shrink in the wash and then they won’t zip up at all. The only sure-fire cure for being overweight is to eat properly and exercise. Remember what your PT tried to drum into you during those hard workout sessions? Personal trainers want you to exercise, come rain or shine because exercise keeps your body in shape. Your body was not designed to lead such a sedentary lifestyle. Just like a sports car that is not put through its paces often, your body becomes sluggish if you do not use it.

Everyone thinks of exercise as drudgery but it does not need to be. It just takes half an hour a day of regular exercise to keep your body in shape. (No, just doing five minutes on the latest machine is not going to help.) Exercise should not be boring and no pain is your ultimate gain here. Exercise should be fun so that you keep coming back for more. You do want to push yourself so some stiffness is necessary but if you are really aching after exercise, you should tone it down a notch. Regular exercise is more important when it comes to weight-loss than irregular marathon sessions. With all the options available to you, there is no excuse left – even the weather can be overcome by utilising indoor sports centres.

No exercise plan would be complete without a good eating plan. You would not put water in your petrol tank and expect your car to run would you? In the same way, you have to fuel your body properly if you want it to run at full tilt. You know this one by heart, I’m sure. Eat a balanced diet, steer clear of junk food and eat your fruit and veggies to lose weight permanently. Weight loss is more about changing your overall lifestyle than anything else.