Tag Archives: Best Life diet

Berry Bliss: 4 Ways to Boost Your Antioxidant Intake

By Janis Jibrin, M.S., R.D., Best Life lead nutritionist

My phytonutrient intake is pretty good year-round, but it skyrockets in the summer thanks to strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries. That’s the time these antioxidant-packed berries are in season, and, finally, affordable!

Here’s why I love each of these berries.

berries

Blueberries. One of nature’s most potent antioxidants—anthocyanins—give these berries their purple-blue color. They’ve been shown to help fight age-related declines in memory and cognition, plus they help keep arteries clear. They’re also delicious—plain, in a crisp, or in these ultra-healthy waffles. This recipe calls for frozen berries, but now that blueberries are in season, you can sub in fresh berries, which will be sweeter and more tender. (more…)

Make “Good Enough” Your Goal

By Team Best Life

If you decided today to join a gym and workout every day, never once missing a workout, would you give up if you couldn’t stick to it? When you try to control your food intake by sticking to unrealistic rules, you’re headed for the same kind of “failure”—and that’s not fair to you.

Stop aiming for perfection. Instead, make “good enough” your goal. This approach can often mean the difference between success and failure. Here are some tips to help you part with perfection.

hip girl

Give in a little bit. Potato chips may be your undoing, but banishing them completely from your diet can be too tough to take. Instead of having to avoid the pantry because you’re afraid you’ll eat the whole bag of chips, buy individual-serving packages to satisfy your cravings on occasion. If you love chocolate or pizza, allow yourself one ounce piece per day, like these Dark Chocolate Quinoa Bars, or limit your pizza to two veggie-packed slices per week, with a homemade Whole Wheat Crust. When we’re too rigid with our food choices, we can’t help but rebel. (more…)

The Dangerous Ways Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Ruin Our Health

By Team Best Life

Think about it: Your choice of beverages 100 years ago was pretty much limited to milk, water, coffee and tea. The same goes for the span of human history prior to that. Sugary drinks are a 20th-century phenomenon, and the very modern toll they take on our bodies encompasses more than just obesity.

coffee sugar

Here are a few facts to help keep the sugar you drink in check.

Sugar’s effects are multifaceted. Diabetes, high blood pressure, and disorders that affect our metabolism can all be attributed to over-consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB).

It starts early. The SSBs and fruit juice children consume are responsible for up to 15 percent of their daily caloric intake. (more…)

The Social Media Diet Can Help You Manage Your Weight Loss

By Team Best Life

Support is a huge part of the formula for weight loss success. Study after study* shows that people who have support fare better than those who go solo. But does electronic support—in the form of social media—count? Studies say it does. Learn how to take advantage of Facebook and Twitter to help meet your weight loss goals.

smartphone

Post your trials… Eaten too much today? A Facebook group can be a safe place to share a small fall off the wagon—and get motivation from others who are losing weight.

… and Victories. Have you come up with a great snack option that helps curb your appetite for the less healthy stuff? Tweet it to those who can use it—you’ll feel great to be able to share. (Use hashtag #weightloss for a good start.) (more…)

Take the Decaf Challenge and Enjoy More Health Benefits from Coffee

By Janis Jibrin, M.S., R.D., Best Life lead nutritionist

Need that morning cup of coffee or tea to “really” wake up? If so, you’ve developed a caffeine tolerance. That basically means that caffeine has lost its edge—instead of giving you an extra boost of energy, it simply brings you to the level where you’d be without caffeine. My caffeine conclusion: I have more energy overall without it.

coffee

This isn’t just my own personal observation—research backs me up. Caffeine (coffee, tea, or caffeine pills) may offer an immediate spike in mood and alertness, but it doesn’t last. In fact, caffeine could make you feel little more tired and moody later in the day, according to research at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit. (more…)

Lose Weight, Win Big: How to Set Up a Successful Weight Loss Competition

By Team Best Life

There’s nothing wrong with a little friendly competition now and then. In fact, in a recent study from researchers at the Mayo Clinic, people who received a cash reward for meeting their weight loss goals were more likely to stick with it and ended up peeling off more pounds than those who were offered no prizes. The competition offers both accountability and support. And of course, the allure of an award doesn’t hurt.

fitness women
Thinking about starting your own weight loss competition? Use these tips to get going:

Recruit a group. Ask friends, neighbors, co-workers or even virtual buddies on Facebook or Twitter to join in. There’s no limit to the amount of participants. If you end up with a large group, you can always separate it into sub-groups (by gender, age, weight loss goals, and so on). (more…)

Take Your Workout Off-Roading with Trail Walking

By Team Best Life

Walking is the ideal exercise for so many reasons (nearly everyone can do it and the risk of injury is low, to name just a couple). But admittedly, it can get a little monotonous. If you’re looking for a slight change, head off the beaten path. Off-road walking can up the exercise ante in just the way you need to break up your walking routine. Check out four reasons why off-roading is worth a try:

trailwalk
You get built-in interval training.

One of the side benefits of off-road walking, particularly if the path you’re taking is hilly, is the inherent interval training it supports. Interval training—intense bursts of exercise followed by recovery periods—translates to more burned calories and increased endurance. Try increasing your speed periodically to make it even more intense. (more…)

5 Ways to Think Small About Your Weight Loss

By Team Best Life

Bigger isn’t always better. In fact, when it comes to weight loss, it’s often the small changes that end up tallying up to greater rewards. No wonder the idea of small victories is one of the hallmarks of the Best Life plan. Here are a few ideas to get you thinking small.

women
Say a word—or two.

Flexing your small-talk muscle can actually aid in maintaining your overall health. Social interactions have a lot of positives, including an elevated mood and reduced stress-hormone levels, that can keep you both emotionally and physically healthy, studies say. Not to mention, chatting it up can be an effective distraction from the buffet table or bar at most parties. (more…)

4 Tricks to Slim Down Without Feeling Down

By Team Best Life

No one starts a weight loss journey by jumping up and down and celebrating; that’s more of an end game. But there ARE things you can do along the way to make the process more—dare we say it—enjoyable.

happy runner
Here are our top tips:

Take the eagle-eye view. It’s not just about numbers on the scale. In fact, taking small steps towards an achieved result is even more important. Take pride in every small victory—whether it’s taking the stairs instead of the elevator or skipping seconds at dinner. In the grand scheme, that’s what matters most. (more…)

Fat Fix: Getting Your Omega 3s Back in Balance

By Janis Jibrin, M.S., R.D., Best Life lead nutritionist

How’s your fat? Don’t worry—I’m not talking about your thighs or belly. I’m referring to the fat on your fork. You’ve heard about all the great things omega-3 fats can do for you, including boosting your mood, keeping your brain sharp and reducing your risk for heart disease. One reason for its stellar health creds: It fights chronic inflammation. But it can’t do its job if it’s outnumbered by its chief rival—omega-6 fats.omega 3

These two polyunsaturated fats compete for entry into your cells, and for most Americans, omega-6 is winning handily. Our bodies evolved to thrive off an omega-6 to omega-3 ratio anywhere from 1:1 to 4:1. Instead, the ratio is 16:1 or higher. That imbalance may literally be killing us.

Where does all the omega-6 come from? Soybean oil is a major source; processed and fast foods are rife with it, and it’s the oil in “vegetable oil” sold in the supermarket. Meanwhile, we eat very few omega-3 rich foods, like fatty fish, chia seeds and flaxseed.

Here’s how to get back in balance: (more…)