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The Health Benefits of Broccoli

broccoli head The Health Benefits of Broccoli

Health Benefits of Broccoli

I love broccoli.  Actually, I love the whole cabbage related family family.  Cauliflower is my probably my favorite.  But I love the broccoli benefits even more.  Widely heralded as the “anti-cancer” super-food and nutritional powerhouse- I make sure to include broccoli in my diet every week.

Here are some of the Health Benefits of Broccoli I’ve put together and why eating your broccoli every week should be a “no-brainer”!

Health Benefits of Broccoli

1.) Cancer-Fighter Properties

Broccoli is an excellent source for many biochemicals that are known to fight cancer. One of the most well known and extensively studied is the isothiocyanates. These powerful chemicals are thought to stimulate enzymes which act to neutralize the effects of cancer causing agents that enter the body. The result is less damage to DNA which can give rise to tumors. In studies, these chemicals  have even been shown to slow down the progression of existing cancer cells!

Another broccoli cancer fighting chemical  is indole-3-carbinol. This powerful biochemical has been shown in studies to alter levels of estrogen  in such a way as to potentially reduce the risk of breast cancer. The power of indole-3-carbinol to prevent and slow down growth of breast cancer cells has been repeatedly demonstrated. The same goes for reducing prostrate cancer.

Broccoli contains glucoraphanin, which helps produces the anti-cancer compound sulforaphane. This compound rids the body of a bacterium found to highly increase the risk of gastric cancer.

Scientists believe there are other important cancer preventative agents in broccoli that have yet to be identified.

It’s not clear how much broccoli you need to get all the anti-cancer benefits.  One way to get the protective effects of broccoli without eating it at every meal is to supplement with broccoli sprouts. Broccoli sprouts have been shown to have anywhere from ten to one hundred times the level of isothiocyanates as the vegetable itself.

2.) Vitamin C
One cup of broccoli contains the RDA of vitamin C, an antioxidant necessary for fighting against free radicals. Besides Vitamin C, broccoli is a rich source of beta carotene, folate, and fiber.

3.) Nervous System
Broccoli contains a high amount of potassium, which helps maintain a healthy nervous system and optimal brain function, as well as promotes regular muscle growth.

4.)Blood Pressure
Along with a high amount of potassium, Broccoli also contains magnesium and calcium that help regulate blood pressure.

5.) Heart Disease
The carotenoid lutein is thought to potentially slow down or prevent the thickening of arteries in the human body, thus fighting against heart disease and stoke. The B6 and folate in broccoli also reduce the risk of atherosclerosis, heart attack, and stroke.

6.)Bone Health
Broccoli contains high levels of both calcium and vitamin K, both of which are important for bone health and prevention of osteoporosis.

7.) Immune System
As little as a cup of broccoli bolsters the immune system with a large dose of beta-carotene. Trace minerals, such as zinc and selenium, further act to strengthen immune defense actions.

8.) Vision
Studies have demonstrated that lutein most often assiciated with tomatoes- but generously  found in broccoli too ( helps prevent age-related macular degeneration and cataracts, as well as possesses anti-cancer effects. Additionally, broccoli is a good source of vitamin A that is needed to form retinal, the light-absorbing molecule that is essential for both low-light and color vision.

9.) Sun Damage
Broccoli contains glucoraphanin which is helpful in repairing skin damage and which helps the skin to detoxify and repair itself.

10.) Weight-Loss  Broccoli is high in fiber, which aids in digestion, prevents constipation, maintains low blood sugar, and curbs overeating. Furthermore, a cup of broccoli 3 grams of protein per serving and only 50 calories per service.

11.)  Birth Defect Fighter   Pregnant?  A cup of broccoli supplies 94 mcg of folic acid, a B-vitamin essential for proper cellular division because it is necessary in DNA synthesis. Without folic acid, the fetus’ nervous system cells do not divide properly.

Deficiency of folic acid during pregnancy has been linked to several birth defects, such as spina bifida. Despite folic acid’s occurence  folic acid deficiency is the most common vitamin deficiency in the world.

I was really to surprised to find out how much protein has.  If you eat the volume of broccoli I do you are getting as much protein 4-5 egg whites or a small piece of lean meat.

Preparation Points:

Steaming broccoli for 3–4 minutes is recommended to maximize potential anti-cancer compounds, such as sulforaphane.  Boiling reduces the levels of suspected anti-carcinogenic compounds in broccoli, with losses of 20 – 30% after five minutes, 40 – 50% after ten minutes, and 77% after thirty minutes.  However, other preparation methods such as steaming, microwaving, and stir frying had no significant effect on the compounds.

So hope that helps convince you- why you should eat your broccoli!

Here’s to your health and wealth!

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To say I was shocked to find out today that I had pneumonia is an understatement. I never  thought it was a possibility. I never get sick- not even a cold- and isn’t pneumonia like a serious infection in the lungs? That people can die from?

To be honest, I really didn’t know much about pneumonia.  So I pulled up Google.  I was curious. “What is Pneumonia?” and  “How do you Get Pneumonia?” and How long does it takes to kick pneumonia in the butt?”.

I really have my dad to thank for getting me to go to the hospital. Because I would have done what most people do- just lay in bed and wait it out. But now that I know that I have pneumonia- I thought I’d share the information I found.  Turns out pneumonia is much more common than I thought.

My infection is in my right lung. My dad tells me that is the most most common lung for it to occur in. Probably why I never experienced any breathing difficulty. My left lung did the work. Or that’s my thought..

Some of the things I was surprised to find out is that there are many types of pneumonia and many types of different causes of pneumonia.  You can get it from a bacteria, a virus or a fungi.  Most pneumonia is caused from a bacteria and that’s what they are treating me for with antibiotics.  But viral pneumonia often results after first acquiring the flu virus.  Getting viral pneumonia then puts you at greater risk for bacterial pneumonia.  So maybe a good idea to lay off the exercise when you get the flu.  icon smile What is pneumonia?  How do you get pneumonia?

Did you know that prior to the discovery of antibiotics, one-third of all people who developed pneumonia died from the infection?  Currently, over 3 million people develop pneumonia each year in the United States. Over a half a million of these people are admitted to a hospital for treatment. Although most of these people recover, approximately 5% will die from pneumonia. Pneumonia is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States.  Scary!!

I was wondering if there could be some connection to the swimming pool and swimming in cold water. Couldn’t really find anything.  I found something called legionella pneumonia caused from exposure to hot tubs and fountains and cooling towers.  That’s going to make me think twice about getting in that hot tub at the gym!

Did you know there was a pneumonia vaccine?  First time I heard of it!  Just like the flu vaccine.  I never had a flu vaccine because I’ve never had the flu.  But I never had pneumonia either.  So maybe worth some consideration now.  Plus I know I never want to feel so lousy again.

National Heart and Lung Institute has a great amount of great information about pneumonia, causes, treatments etc.  Plenty of info to get fully informed! Here’s what I found from National Heart Lung and Blood Institute.

Also- all different ages and many otherwise healthy individuals get pneumonia- and often the symptoms like mine show up as a simple fever to start with.  You don’t get a fever for no reason.  So if it doesn’t clear up in a couple days- get it checked out.  It’s better safe than sorry.  Here are some testimonials of people and the symptoms they experienced when they got pneumomia.

As far as being contagious from pneumonia, I was surprised to find that it wasn’t that likely to get pneumonia from simple exposure to a person with pneumonia.  The common cold and flu virus are more easily transmitted person to person.

And can I give pneumonia to my pets?  From the best info on the web I can find.  Very unlikely.  Thank Goodness!!

I’m wishing the best of health to you if you’re reading this- and hope you steer clear of pneumonia!

Super Food Soup 300x225 3 Simple Super Food Blender Soups to Try

My Super-Food Soup

I’ve had a lot of interest lately in my instant fresh veggie blender soups.  If you’ve never tried fresh veggie soups in a blender- Try them!  You’ll be very surprised!  These are the best soups I’ve ever tried!

I’ve posted 3 recipes to my JoinDaveandFara Blog over the past few weeks.  For those of you that missed those recipes- I’m reposting all three here.

If you like these recipes- You’ll also like the others recipes I’m working on now.  To receive my FREE RECIPE Ebook when it’s complete simply send a blank email to  You will also receive My FREE REPORT 12 Top Diet and Fat-Loss Tips to Guarantee Your Most Lean Physique Ever!


Broccoli, Spinnach, Onion, Garlic, Cilantro Soup

Steam broccoli, spinnach, onion, garlic for 5-7 minutes

Add all ingredients to blender

Add  1/2 cup to 1 cup cilantro (to your taste)

Add 20 ounce chicken broth

Add cajun spice if you like

Blend for 10 seconds.

Voila!  Instant gourmet power soup!  You will love it!  I never thought making fresh soup could be so simple and so delicious.  Salt and Pepper to your liking.


My Soup Creation 300x225 3 Simple Super Food Blender Soups to TryMy Blended Soup Creation!

Super Simple Broccoli Cawliflower Spinnach Garlic Onion Soup

Steam broccoli florets, cawliflower florets, spinnach, garlic and onion for 5 minutes.

Place in blender with 1 sliced tomato and 15-20 ounces chicken broth.

Blend for 5-10 seconds!

That’s it.  Voila!  Yummy.  Enjoy!


Simple Asparagus, Broccoli, Brussell Sprout Soup!

Roast asparagus for 15minutes  (amount as desired)

Boil or steam chopped broccoli for 5 minutes (amount as desired)

Boil or roast brussel sprouts for 15 minute (amount as desired)

Let vegetables cool

Chop vegetables

Put vegetables in blender with 20oz chicken broth

Blend!  Voila’!  Instant Soup-Quick and Easy!

I heated mine 1 minute in microwave and added salt and pepper.  The consistency was thick and it was delicious as is.  Enjoy!

I think you will enjoy all three of these recipes and plan to share many more with you in the future.

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Can Athletes Thrive on a “Meat-Free” Diet?

More and more athletes are moving towards a meat-free diet for health reasons and/or ethical reasons as a stand against the cruel and detestable treatment of animals on factory farms.

Names of Vegetarians on the list include 5X Mr. Universe Bill Pearl,  7X Ms. Olympia Corey Everson, Olympic Track and Field Star Carl Lewis, Milwaukee Brewers slugger Prince Fielder, Pro football player Tony Gonzales, Martial Art’s Star Mac Danzig- and the list could go on and on.

As someone who has been ingrained in health and fitness for the past 25 years, I’ve most often followed whatever the popular thinking has been regarding optimal sports nutrition.

The body-building community has put an emphasis on a much higher protein intake than the non-athlete for maximizing muscle synthesis.  Most body-builders follow the recommendation of 1 gram of protein per lb of lean body mass.  That’s twice the recommended daily allowance for the average person.  And it’s been generally accepted that animal protein was superior and a more “complete protein” than vegetable proteins.

Do we really need that much protein?  Probably not.  To be honest, I’ve never seen a study that backs up 1 gram per lb of body weight is necessary to build muscle.  Although I’m sure there is one out there, along with a hundred others that state something else.  And as far, as animal protein being “superior” than vegetable protein, well I guess that depends on the source.

I do know that I’m finding more body-builders and pro athletes everyday that are building muscle and performing at an elite level and thriving on a vegetarian diet.

With that in mind-I’m forwarding a very good article called “The No-Meat Athlete” by Marzia Prince with Fitness-RX.  To find the original article from Fitness-RX you can go here.

The No-Meat Athlete

Written by Marzia Prince Friday, 13 April 2012 05:00

NO MEAT ATHLETE ins1 Can Athletes Thrive on a Meat Free Diet?

A Plant-based Diet Doesn’t Mean You Can’t Build the Body You Want!

In recent years, a growing trend towards vegetarianism (not consuming animal flesh) and veganism (not consuming flesh or products) has been taking the world by storm. This new generation of plant eaters includes fitness professionals, bodybuilders, powerlifters and professional athletes. Incorporating a plant-based diet, whether you eat meat or not, is the purest form of sports performance supplementation that an athlete needs to burn fat, put on quality muscle and increase energy.

Can you build a body without animal meat?

In a world of carnivores, it seems impossible because nutrition is heavily focused on animal protein. Especially in the bodybuilding and fitness world, it seems like eating animal meat or products five to six times a day is the standard diet. One would think that you could not achieve the same results as you would consuming animal meat. I thought it was impossible until many world-class plant-based athletes proved me wrong.

A main topic of conversation for many people is that vegetarians and vegans “don’t get enough protein” on a plant-based diet. But that could not be further from the truth. According to the World Health Organization and the American Dietetic Association, a vegan or vegetarian on a well-planned, balanced diet has no trouble meeting their protein requirements. And if you really think about it, how many people do you know with a protein deficiency?

If you still don’t think its possible, here are some No-meat celebrity athletes that prove you can reach your fitness goals without meat:

Robert Cheeke, vegan bodybuilder

Rich Roll, vegan ultra endurance athlete

Brendan Brazier, vegan professional Ironman triathlete

Mac Danzig, MMA (Mixed Martial Arts)

Andrea While, female bodybuilding

Claudia Lailhacar, NPC Figure Competitor

Where do no-meat athletes get their protein?

Protein is one of the three macronutrients the body needs for cellular repair. Very important for muscle building! Protein is made up of smaller components called amino acids. Our bodies do not synthesize nine essential amino acids, so we need to consume it from a plant or animal source to build and repair the body. So when consuming a diet low in animal products, a variety of plant-based nutrition is key. It is important to mix and match plant proteins to be able to form a complete protein. A complete protein is a protein that has all the essential amino acids. A good example of a plant-based complete protein combo is brown rice and beans.


Vegan proteins: NO MEAT ATHLETE ins2 Can Athletes Thrive on a Meat Free Diet?






Brown rice 




Nut Butters


Vegetables— especially leafy greens

Non-GMO soy or tofu



Plant-based protein powders such as hemp, pea or a mixed plant blend

Vegetarian proteins: 

All the proteins listed on the vegan list, plus:




Whey protein power

How much protein should you eat?

In the bodybuilding and fitness world, the standard amount of protein is one gram per pound of bodyweight. You need to divide that number up according to how many meals you are eating a day. Taking in the proper nutrients every two to three hours ensures that your muscles will always be fueled and nourished, providing the best opportunity for growth and achieving desired results.

Remember not to exceed too much protein per meal. Your body can only assimilate what it needs at that time. Like any of the macronutrients, if you eat too much of it, it will store as fat. So be careful on your food portions.

Marzia’s Meatless Muscle Meal : Black bean quinoa salad


• 2 teaspoons grated lime zest

• 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

• 2 cups quinoa cooked

• 1 (14- to 15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained

• 1 medium tomato diced or 15 baby tomatoes cut in half

• 3 scallions, chopped

• 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

• ½ of small avocado chopped

Directions: Mix all together in a bowl and enjoy! Serves 2 people.

It is good to change up your protein sources to give your body different quality nutrition. Never underestimate the power of plants!

Marzia Prince is an IFBB Bikini Pro & Team Gaspari Athlete. Having a major health scare back in 2009, Marzia became a plant-based fitness athlete. Through her education and journey, she was inspired to help others. In 2011 Marzia announced her new brand The Healthy Housewives to educate women about the importance of incorporating a plant-based lifestyle for health and longevity. To contact Marzia via e-mail:

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Arnold Swartzenager Perfect Protein Recovery Food For Building Muscles Overnight!

Protein Does A Body Good!

A recent study  looked at the role of protein taken  immediately before sleep in  post-exercise overnight recovery.

Researchers evaluated the impact of protein ingestion immediately prior to sleep on digestion, absorption kinetics, and protein metabolism on 16 healthy young males.The participants were asked to perform resistance exercises at 8pm in the evening.At 9pm, all participants ate a recovery meal consisting of 20 grams of protein and 60 grams of carbs.Then, 30 minutes before they went to bed, half of them drank a high-protein beverage. According to the authorsi

During sleep casein protein was effectively digested and absorbed resulting in a rapid rise in circulating amino acid levels which were sustained throughout the remainder of the night. Protein ingestion prior to sleep increased whole-body protein synthesis rates and improved net protein balance… This is the first study to show that protein ingested immediately prior to sleep is effectively digested and absorbed, thereby stimulating muscle protein synthesis and improving whole-body protein balance during post-exercise, overnight recovery

What and When You Eat After Your Workout Matters

After exercise your body is nitrogen-poor and your muscles have been broken down. Providing your body with the correct nutrients after your workout is  crucial to stop the catabolic process in your muscle and to help your muscles repair and grow.  Fail to feed your muscle at the right time after exercise and  the catabolic process will go too far and can potentially damage your muscle. Amino acids from high quality animal proteins, along with carbohydrates from vegetables (not grains) are necessary for this process.

Good sources of animal protein include:

  • Whey protein (minimally processed, and derived from organic, grass-fed, non-hormonally treated cows)

  •  chicken

  • Eggs

  • Grass-fed beef
Beneficial sources of carbohydrates include:
  •  Vegetable
  • Dark green, leafy vegetables such as spinach, kale or Swiss chard
  • Low fructose fruits like lemon, limes, passion fruit, apricots, plums, cantaloupe, and raspberries.
It’s important to combine a quality protein with a veggie-type carb in every meal, no matter whether it’s a resistance training day, an interval cardio day, or a non-workout day. However, after strength training (as opposed to cardio training), your body tends to need more rapidly absorbed nutrients and a higher glycemic (fast released, starchy) carbohydrate. Another slight difference between interval cardio and strength training days is the timing of your meal.
  • After cardio, you want to wait 45-60 minutes, and then consume a high-quality protein (whole food) and vegetable-type carbohydrate. (An example would be a spinach salad and some chicken, or high quality whey protein like Miracle Whey).
  • After a resistance workout (muscle-building day), the ideal time to consume your post-workout meal is 15-30 minutes after finishing your session, in order to help repair your damaged muscles.
Whey Protein – The IDEAL Fitness Food
 Whey protein  is considered the gold standard of protein by many, and is one of the best types of foods you can consume before and after exercise.
According to a study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition last yeariii:
“Whey protein stimulates postprandial muscle protein accretion more effectively than do casein and casein hydrolysate.   This effect is attributed to a combination of whey’s faster digestion and absorption kinetics and higher leucine content.”
 Whey protein works so well because it assimilates very quickly, so the protein will get to your muscles within 10-15 minutes of swallowing it, supplying them with the right food at the right time. Another study published in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports & Exercise showed the amino acids found in high quality whey protein also activate certain cellular mechanisms, including a mechanism called mTORC-1, which in turn promote muscle protein synthesis, boost thyroid, and also protect against declining testosterone levels after exerciseiv.
Whey protein earns its title as the perfect “fitness food” as it contains not only high quality protein, but also extremely high amounts of leucine, which is particularly important for muscle growth and repair.

Leucine – An Essential Muscle Builder

Leucine is part of branched-chain amino acid that serves multiple functions in your body, one of which is to increase protein synthesis and builds your muscle.
The highest concentrations of leucine are found in dairy products; particularly whey protein.
The typical requirement for leucine is 1-3 grams daily. However, for optimal muscle repair you need as much as 8-16 grams of leucine daily. The following chart presents leucine content in common foods. As you will see, to obtain the minimum eight gram leucine requirement for anabolic purposes, you’d have to consume a pound and a half of chicken, for example, or about 16 eggs! Most would agree that’s just not feasible. However, you only need three ounces of high-quality whey to reach the eight gram requirement, making it an obvious choice.
Leucine Content in food / per 100g
Whey Protein Concentrate 8.0g
Raw Cheddar Cheese 3.6g
Lean Beef 1.7g
Salmon 1.6g
Almonds 1.5g
Chicken 1.4g
Chick Peas 1.4g
Raw Eggs 1.0g
Egg Yolk 1.4g
Sheep Milk 0.6g
Pork 0.4g
Cow Milk 0.3g

Avoid Sugar Before, During and After Exercise!

Besides choosing foods that will help you optimize your exercise efforts, you also want to pay careful attention to what NOT to eat. To maximize the benefits of exercise, including weight loss benefits, you’ll want to  avoid:
    • Fruit juices
    • Energy drinks
    • Sports drinks
    • Most energy bars
These, and virtually all other processed foods and beverages, contain high amounts of sugar, including fructose, which will effectively sabotage your efforts and nullify many of the benefits of exercise. Remember, 80 percent of the benefits you reap from a healthy lifestyle comes from you diet, and the remaining 20 percent from exercise. Exercise cannot counteract the harmful effects of a high-fructose diet.
 Consuming fructose, including that from fruit juices, within two hours of a high-intensity workout will also decimate your natural human growth hormone (HGH) production – a MAJOR benefit of interval training.
Consuming fructose increases  production of the hormone somatostatin, which inhibit the production of HGH.  So:
“A high sugar meal after working out, or even a recovery drink (containing high sugar) after working out, will stop the benefits of exercise induced HGH. You can work out for hours, then eat a high sugar candy bar or have a high sugar energy drink, and this will shut down the  benefits of HGH,” HGH Magazine writes.
Granted, there is a small group of elite and highly competitive athletes for whom increasing growth hormone is not a primary goal. For these athletes, consuming some carbs, preferably dextrose-based, in the recovery period is probably a good idea to improve their recovery time and will help to maximize their athletic performance. Since they’re competing, they’re less likely to be concerned about long-term growth hormone levels. But for most others, increasing HGH through high intensity interval exercise is an important and will want to avoid the sugar and juice.
You  want to avoid sugar and grain carbs at least 90 minutes before going to bed in order to optimize night-time HGH production – a factor that the study does not address,  but   insulin and HGH are adversarial hormones – carbs will trigger insulin secretion, which basically nullifies HGH reesponse.

References:  My study information was received from Dr. Mercola’s Newsletter.  To view more of his articles.  You can visit his site here

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Faraday Top 11 Diet and Fat-loss Tips

Faraday on bike 2 300x225 Faraday Top 11 Diet and Fat loss Tips

Faraday's Top 11 Fat-Loss tips!

Faraday’s Best Diet and Fat-loss Tips!

Always remember:  There is no magic bullet! The simple  key to dieting creating a calorie deficit- Simply that your body is burning more than you are eating!  There are only 2 ways to do this- 1.) through diet and  2.)  through exercise- and the best way to go is a combination of both!  You need a 3500 calorie deficit to lose 1 lb.  That’s a 500 calorie deficit a day to lose 1lb in a week!  And you wonder why weight loss is hard!  So the best way to go is to create a deficit of 500 calories a day with a combination of exercise and diet to trim a 1 lb a week.



  1. First you need to find the amount of calories you need to be in a deficit.  I like to take my weight times 10 to find my minimum calories for regular body function.  So I weigh 135 x 10 equals 1350.  Plus add in my exercise calories.  So if I work-out 1-2 hours I can add in another 500-800 calories to bring my daily total 1850-2150 for maintenance.  To lose a lb a week you need a deficit of 500 calories a day.  So subtract 500 from the 2000 to come to 1500 calories a day to lose 1 lb a week.  I don’t think you should ever try to lose more than 1-2 lbs a week because you would need to cut your calories too low which will only have a negative effect on your metabolism and greater likelihood of gaining it back.  Additionally, If you are losing more than 2lbs a week- the weight you are losing will include water and muscle which is exactly what you don’t want.


  1. Track your calories.  Write everything down.  You can’t know how many calories you are eating if you don’t write it down.  And it is very easy to eat much more than you think you are eating. Believe me, I always underestimate my calories.   Extras add up like the amount of cream in your coffee, butter to your bread or oils for cooking etc. There are several calorie counting sites online you can use.  Journal your exercise too- and adjust your calories up or down depending on your exercise. You will become much more aware of the calories you are eating.


  1. Eat small frequent meals.  Spread your calories in 5 or 6 mini- meals or  3 meals and 2-3 snacks.  This keeps your hunger at bay, blood sugar stable and energy  steady.  Frequent meals  keeps the metabolism churning- So if you need to eat 1500 calories a day.  Spread it out over  5 meals of 300 calories or 6 meals of 250 calories.  Or if you prefer bigger meals try 3 meals of 400 calories and 2 snacks of 150.  Use only as a guideline and find what works for you.  My post work-out meals and main evening meal are always my biggest meals.  The total calories is more important than how you spread your meals.  But this is another tool to optimize your results.


  1. Include high quality low fat protein in each meal.  Protein will help satisfy your appetite- Plus you will have a thermic effect- the body will require slightly more energy to burn protein calories.  Which means you will actually burn a few more calories digesting the proteins as compared to fat or carbohydrates.  Most formulas for active life-style or heavy weight-training  individuals suggest  1  grams per every lb of lean body weight you have.  So say your lean mass is 130lbs- that means at 1X your lean body mass- you would require 130grams of protein a day or x4grams = 520 calories a day should be lean protein sources such as combination of eggs and egg-whites, chicken , turkey, fish, lean beef, low-fat cottage cheese.  If you split this into 5 meals- that would mean you would include 25 grams of protein per meal or 100 protein calories in each meal.  That would be like 6-7 egg whites, or 3-4 ounces of lean meat , or ½ cup of cottage cheese.  You should become aware of the protein grams and calories of the foods you eat.  There are many calorie count guides online which list grams of protein, carbs, or fat in the foods you eat.


  1.   Include  Low glycemic index complex carbs and/or lots of fibrous veggies (my preference)

If you are getting 500  of your calories from lean protein sources- and you are following a 1500-800 calorie diet plan- that leaves 55%-60% of your calories to fill.  40-50% of your calories should come in the form of complex carbohydrates and/or  fibrous veggies  which are absorbed slowly and provide sustained energy to fuel  your work-outs.  So if you are eating 5-6 mini meal a day- that would allow you approximately  30 grams of carbohydrates for each of your 5 meals or closer to 25 grams  if you are eating 6 meals a day.    That would give you  about  150 calories of carbohydrates per meal.  Complex carbs you might select per meal might be ½ cup of brown rice, ½ c of oat meal, 1 cup of wheat bran,  1 small sweet potato, ½ c of beans, ½ cup of whole grain pasta. Or you can do like me and just quadruple up on veggies instead!  Stay away from processed foods or foods with added sugar.  These foods  absorb quickly in the blood-steam creating a spike in your insulin increasing  the appetite and turning on the  fat storing hormones. If it has an ingredient list- it’s too processed!   I personally  prefer  to include lots of veggies with every meal because I can eat a much greater volume of them and they fill me up better than the smaller portions of complex carbs I would have to eat.  (½ cup of rice or oatmeal does not fill me up!)  Think like several cups(3-5 cups!) of stir-fry veggies, (watch the oil)  broccoli,  cawliflower, cabbage, peppers, yellow squash, zucchini, cucumbers, Big veggie salads. Just watch the dressings.  I like Walden Farms dressings which are calorie free, carb free and sugar free- and taste great!  The honey dijon and balsalmic vineagrite  are my favorite.  There are many, many veggies to choose from!  The veggies are also the lowest on the glycemic index so provide the slowest most steady affect on the insulin levels  on your blood stream.  A very good thing.  They are loaded with fiber and antioxitants and photonutrients!  You need to get a calorie count book so you can properly calculate how much of a particular veggie you can include.  Think green and you can’t go wrong!


Faraday tip for fullness:  Think shirataki noodles.  Shirataki noodle have virtually no calories.  They are 97% water and 3% fiber.  They have no flavor- so they absorb the flavor of whatever food you prepare them with. And they absorb 10 times their weight in water.  So that means if you add them to your stir-frys they simply add texture to your meals but they really fill you up!!  Just make sure you drink plenty of water with them.  Youll be shocked by how full you get with no added calories!!


  1. Include essential fatty acids for the remainder of your calories.  Fats are not all bad.  We need some fats for the body to function properly.  Fats help to fill us up- They turn on a satiety hormone and have no effect on insulin levels. .  The remaining 20-30% of your calories should come from monounsaturated and  polyunsaturated fats and essential fatty acids or that leaves approximately 50 calories per meal for fats.  That’s allowing 250-300 calories a day in a 1500 calorie plan from fats.  Fats have 9 calories per gram as compared to 4 calories per gram for protein or carbs which means fats are much more calorie dense so the key is to keep the portions small.  Think 1 egg yolk, a handful of nuts, a 1/3 of an avocado, a Tablespoon or 2 of flax seeds,  ½ tablespoon of olive oil for cooking or salad dressing, 1 ounce of cheese, an ounce of olives or nuts.  Try to include some fatty fish like salmon once or twice a week to help get your essential fatty acids.


  1. 7.       Incorporate Weight-training

Weight training is probably one of the best ways to increase your metabolism 24/7 around the clock.  First of all, muscle is much more metabolically active than fat which requires no energy to maintain it.  So the more muscle you have- the more calories you need to maintain that muscle.  So your metabolism increases.   So simply, You can lose weight with more calories.  Also, weight-training  prevents  you from losing muscle while following a reduced calorie diet- which you likely would do without it.  If you lose muscle that means you need  less calories to maintain your weight.  You will end up having to keep reducing your calories more to continue losing weight.  You should aim for working each body part at least once a week.  If time is limited- I would shoot for a full body work-out at least twice a week.  The best exercises  are ones that include big muscle groups or compound muscle groups (more than one muscle group included per exercise) If I could include just one exercise per body part- I would choose-Squats for legs ( big muscle and compound exercise) Pull-ups or lats pull down for back, chest press for chest, shoulder press for shoulders, bicep curls for biceps, and tricep push downs for tricep.  You can look up new exercises online or talk to a local trainer to show you some basic exercises.


8.) Include Cardio training exercises

Try to include a minimum of 3-5 days a week of 30-60 minutes of cardio and optimally 2-3 days which include HIIT High Intensity Interval Training which has been proven to be more effective for calorie and fat-burning for up to 48 hours after the fact.  The benefits of cardio are numerous and allows you to eat a little more when you are dieting.  Relying on restricting calories alone is hard- and the amount of calories you need to stick to without exercise may not be satisfying enough to stick with.  Exercise allows you to eat a little more when you are dieting.  Relying on restricting calories alone is hard- and the amount of calories you need to stick to without exercise may not be satisfying enough to stick with.  The best approach is a combination of cutting calories and excising more to create your deficit.  Don’t over-do it though.  Too much cardio will actually slow your results, increase cortisol and slow your bodies fat-burning along with it.


9.) Fiber, Fiber, Fiber- included with your carbs-Hint- Get your veggies and you automatically get your fiber!  Fiber  keeps you full longer, keeps your blood sugar stable- makes it 100% easier to stick with your diet.  Plus colon benefits.  No polyps!  Anti-cancer benefits!  Colon loves you for it!


10.) Drink enough water and fluids.  Very important to stay hydrated!  And water and non-sugar beverages help you stay full!


11.) Don’t forget sleep!  You will not lose weight effectively, recover effectively or control your appetite without adequate sleep.  Aim for 8hours a night!



12 Ways to Raise your Testosterone Levels Naturally

sports fit body 12 Ways to Raise your Testosterone Levels Naturally

12 Ways to Increase your Testosterone Levels

I’ve been giving this issue of hugely declining levels of testosterone as we age some serious thought  since I first read that females testosterone levels plummet by half by the time we reach forty. 

Male testosterone peaks in adolescence or early twenties- and decreases 1% a year starting in their thirties.  By age 40, that’s a 10% decrease in testosterone for men.

Males, famously have 10 times the testosterone we females have.  Many men take it seriously enough- that they are making trips to the doctor with the first  signs of declining testosterone- which include decreasing sex drive, energy, vitality, muscle-mass and strength, and bone density. Low testosterone can also contribute to a decrease in motivation and self-confidence.  And low testosterone is linked to higher morbidity from sudden death.

But what about us women?  Wouldn’t the same symptoms affect us too?

Men produce their testosterone in their testes.  Women produce their testosterone in their ovaries.  So women entering their forties are affected.  Women in their 50′s who have gone through menopause  would be hugely affected.

Often, women don’t give it any thought- and doctors routinely don’t even screen for it.  Women who go through menopause are routinely given female hormones- estrogen and progesterone-but it seems testosterone is usually ignored.

As someone who works out for strength and stamina, I want to maximize my testosterone levels naturally to avoid  what seems to be the most commonly witnessed signs of lowering testosterone levels in woman- which include an increasing proportion of body-fat and in particular in the belly area and decreasing strength and muscle mass, as well as decreased energy, vitality and sex-drive.

Have you noticed that many women in their twenties  gain more in their hips and legs but women over forty- even when they are in good shape- start to gain in their middle?  That has a lot to do with the decreasing level of testosterone in comparison to estrogen.

So what can you do about it?  Well, obviously- you can visit your doctor to measure your hormone levels and consult with him about options that are available to you if you are affected.  Women in menopause  are sometimes prescribed a low dose testosterone cream which is often  mixed with estrogen and progesterone.

Short of supplementation, there is much you can do to elevate your testosterone level naturally.  So, hear are the best options- for both women and men.

1.) Lift Heavy Weights

Resistance training is a potent stimulant of testosterone production, so be sure to lift heavy weights at least once a week.   Think less than 8 reps.  A Finish study showed that the 5 reps produced the highest testosterone response. That’s 85%  of your 1 rep max.  The bulk of your workout should involve “compound” weight-lifting exercises that train several large muscle groups, and not just one or two smaller muscles.  Think “all over body exercises” like squats, leg press, bench presses or back rows which  increases testosterone more than doing biceps curls or triceps pushdowns.  This is why doing squats could help you build bigger biceps!  Beyond that- the rest intervals between sets can stimulate different hormonal responses. Resting 90 seconds between squat and bench press sets was shown to boost post-workout testosterone levels the most, followed by rest periods of 120 seconds.  Resting 60 seconds increased growth hormone the most and testosterone the least.

2.) Go Sprint

In young men, a short six-second bout of sprinting was shown to increased serum total testosterone levels. Levels remained elevated during recovery. Interestingly, testosterone was also correlated with lactate levels in the blood. Plus, we know sprints have a superior epoch effect- (calorie and fat-burning after the fact) than slow steady state cardio. So put on your running shoes!

3.) Avoid Excessive Cortisol

Cortisol antagonizes and reduces free testosterone levels.  So the more cortisol- the more negatively your testosterone levels are affected.  Stress promotes the release of cortisol, so avoiding stress is crucial for maintaining or boosting T levels. Make sure you get a good 8hours sleep every night (which in and of itself increases testosterone levels). Avoid overtraining, especially  excessive  cardio , which may negatively affect T levels and reproductive function. And be sure to take time to  relax (read a book, take a yoga class, get a massage, go for a walk).

4.) Get Some Sun

Vitamin D is positively associated with bone and muscular strength,  and also correlates positively with testosterone levels. The best way to raise your vitamin D levels is get a minimum 15 minutes of sun each day.  If you don’t get in the sun, you may very well be deficient, so consider supplementing  to get your vitamin D.

5.) Avoid Dioxins- Go for Pastured or Grass-fed Animal Products

Toxic substances called dioxins interfere with the male reproductive system, including production of testosterone.  Most dioxins accumulate in the tissues and especially fats of conventionally raised animal products and dairy.   If you’re going to be eating fatty cuts of meat or using dairy, try to go for pastured, grass-fed animals to reduce your exposure and lessen the negative impact on your testosterone levels.

6.) Eat Saturated and Monounsaturated Fat

A look at male athletes found that both saturated fat, monounsaturated fat, and cholesterol intakes were positively correlated with resting testosterone levels. PUFA intake was barely associated with increased levels.  A low-fat, high-fiber diet reduced serum and free testosterone levels in middle-aged men. T usage wasn’t affected, but T production was reduced. If you want to raise your testosterone, eat a diet that includes about 30 percent fat, and not much less. Your body needs dietary fat to produce testosterone, so eating a vegetarian diet low fat diet will cause your testosterone levels to drop.

7.) Avoid Excess Sugar and High Glycemic Carbs

Researchers found that 75 grams of pure glucose – and the resultant spike in blood sugar – was enough to drop testosterone levels by as much as 25% in a random grouping of healthy, prediabetic, and diabetic men. Now keep in mind how rapidly many SAD carb choices (pasta, cereal, bread, etc) convert to glucose upon digestion…

8.) Get Enough Zinc

A zinc deficiency predicts lowered testosterone in men (eat your shellfish), but heroic supplementary doses of the mineral don’t boost T levels beyond normal in men with adequate dietary intake.

9.) Lose Body Fat

 Carrying excess body fat elevates your estrogen levels, and that may cause your testosterone levels to sink, says Joseph Zmuda, an epidemiologist at the University of Pittsburgh.  Carrying two or three extra pounds won’t cause this hormonal shift;  it occurs once you’re 30 percent over your ideal body which accounts for a large number of Americans.

10.) Don’t lose More than One Pound a Week

When you want to trim down quickly, many people starve themselves while exercising like a mad. One of the many reasons this stops working in your 30s, when your natural testosterone levels start dropping, is  simple: Cutting your calorie intake by more than 15 percent makes your brain think you’re starving, so it shuts down testosterone production to wait out the famine. There’s no need to reproduce if you’re starving. At the same time, this dive in circulating testosterone stops you from burning body fat efficiently, so you’re actually defeating  your hard efforts.

11.) Have Morning Sex

For men at least- just having an erection causes their circulating testosterone to rise significantly — and having one in the morning can bump your natural post-dawn testosterone surge.  Does it apply to women?  Not sure on this one.  But give it a shot.

12.) Make Nuts your Go To Snack

Research has shown that men who ate diets rich in monounsaturated fat — the kind found in peanuts — had the highest testosterone levels.  It’s not known why this occurs, but some scientists believe that monounsaturated fats have a direct effect on the testes.  Nuts, olive oil, guacamole and peanut butter are good sources of monounsaturated fat.

All in all, testosterone is an incredibly important hormone for health, longevity, and vitality – in both men and women. Eating whole natural foods, eliminating processed and sugary foods and dioxins, eliminating excessive stress, and incorporating  heavy intense workouts, adequate sleep and rest, healthy animal and monounsaturated fats and plenty of vitamin D, should be enough to promote adequate amounts of testosterone for most healthy individuals.

Is AC-11 the Secret to the Fountain of Youth?

We all want to stay fit and healthy.  We all want to look and feel youthful.  Scientists have been consumed with anti-aging and life-extension for decades.  I remember reading Sandy Shaw and Durk Pearson’s best selling book Life Extension 20 years ago with fascination.  Their book was probably the most comprehensive body of research to that date on the subject- and led rise to the highly popular Life Extension product line that created fortunes for many individuals including my husband Dave and many friends that I have to this day.

Today the interest in anti-aging and life-extension is strong as ever and many new patented products and extracts are gaining international attention as the rising stars of anti-aging.  Much concentration   has been focused in the area of stem cell regeneration and dna repair and an extract  that has emerged on the world stage as a stem cel regeneration/dna repair heavyweight is AC-11.

What is AC-11?   AC-11® is a natural botanical extract that helps repair cellular damage. There have been 40 clinical studies which have documented that AC-11® helps restore the body’s ability to repair DNA, and inhibits future damage to cellular systems.

What AC11 applications are currently out there?

AC-11 is a revolutionary advancement in human nutrition and skin care. Derived from the inner bark of Uncaria tomentosa, a vine indigenous to the Amazon rainforest, safe, all-natural AC-11 helps the body to repair DNA damage. The process by which this repair occurs is self-healing and has evolutionary origins. Its proper functioning may be the critical piece to the human health puzzle. Current science confirms that it is unrepaired DNA damage that leads to accelerated aging and an eventual breakdown of the body.

Effective both orally and topically, AC-11 begins where the protective benefits of antioxidants end by visibly reducing the adverse effects of aging and by helping to restore healthy cell function. Supported by over 40 peer-reviewed scientific studies, AC-11 works with the body to repair DNA damage caused by over-exposure to the sun and oxidative stress (pollution, etc,). This action helps boost immune function and allows our bodies to perform more efficiently, so that we look and feel younger—a perfect solution for inner health and outer beauty!  To find out more about AC-11 Click here.

Two promising products I have recently started using with

DNA Repair Skin Care 217x300 Is AC 11 the Secret to the Fountain of Youth?

AC-11 DNA Repair Skin-Care

AC11  are produced through Bhip International.  They include Bhip’s Liquid Aio and their Activar Day and Night cream and so far I’m very pleased with how my skin is looking.  I really think the skin under my eyes looks firmer and smoother and have been spending most time with no foundation make-up.

Bhip  just launched a great promotion for customers that is pretty unheard of and such a great deal that I had to share with you.  For a limited time, the company is offering $250 worth of AC11 products including the day cream, night cream, and liquid nutritional with a double dose of Ac11 for $50.  That offer includes the tax and shipping.  They are so positive that people will be so pleased with the results that they are offering a 60 day money back guarantee- even if you return the containers empty!  In addition to that, they are sweetening the offer even more- by giving customers a chance to get their product FREE every month.  When you refers 3 friends to the same great offer- you get your products for free.  To find out more about Bhip Ac11 products and the Dare to Be Exceptional Challenge Click Here.

I don’t spend lots of money on cars and jewelry and expensive clothing- but I don’t skimp when it comes to my health, nutrition and skin-care.  You shouldn’t either.


 Whats better? Intermittent Fasting or Frequent Feeding?

Intermittent Fasting or Frequent Feeding?

You may or may not have heard a lot about intermittent fasting.  What is Intermittent Fasting?  Intermittent fasting is basically extending periods of fasting so that  periods without eating are increased in comparison the times of feeding.  The periods of fasting could be as little as 12 hours or as many 24hours depending on the Intermittent Fasting protocol you follow.

Intermittent fasting proponents have been growing and many challenge the widely recognized and accepted model of eating 5-6 smaller meals.  Some intermittent fasting protocols do not even require anything so extreme.  Some protocols call for 2 or 3 meals daily instead of 5.

The arguments most often cited for intermittent fasting include:

1.)  Fasting periods allow for increased insulin sensitivity which creates an environment more favorable to fat-loss.  We have greater insulin sensitivity first thing in the morning after and 8-10hours fast.  The intermittent fasting proponents suggest we should take it a step further and seek to increase the period of insulin sensitivity further by longer periods of fasting throughout the day.

2.) Fasting periods lead to less total calories consumed which leads to greater weight loss.  Regardless, of the number of meals eaten the total weight-loss you experience is still generally dependent on total calories consumes.  So eating less frequently could lead some people to eat less total calories which would lead to greater weight-loss.

3.) Fasting promotes greater levels of growth hormone in the body which enhances weight loss and muscle building processes.

4.) Fasting frees your body of other metabolic functions so that energy can be spent on cellular repair or so that damaged cells and fat stores can be used for energy.

In addition, the intermittent fasting proponents claim that eating more frequently makes you hungrier.  They also claim that the smaller amounts of insulin produced more often is a less favorable environment that larger insulin releases at less frequent periods for fat loss.

So what’s my take on intermittent fasting?

While there really is no scientific research I can find to suggest  eating 5-6 meals  is superior to eating 3-4 meals, there certainly is a ton of anecdotal evidence with body-builders who have relied on 5-6 meals or even 7-8 meals daily who have achieved the lowest levels of body-fat know to man- consistently- over and over again- while preparing for body building shows.  Body-builders have relied on smaller feedings more often model for as long as I can remember.  So there is nothing that argues more strongly for something than proven consistent results.

That’s not to say that intermittent fasting doesn’t work.  The frequent meal model is dependent on less total calories through-out the day to produce a decrease in weight.  If you eat 5 or 6 meals with no calorie deficit, you are not going to lose weight.  The same can be said for intermittent fasting.  If your total calories exceeds the amount needed to cause a deficit then you are not going to lose weight.

There are many argument in favor of frequent feeding including increased metabolism or thermic effect with each meal, better hunger control, tricking the body into less fat being stored.

The bottom line as I see it is finding what works best for you.  You could say I use both intermittent fasting to some extent and frequent feeding to some extent.  My last meal of the day might be 11pm or 12am.  I usually go to the gym in the morning and work-out on an empty stomach.  So there is often a 12 hour period without eating.   That’s intermittent fasting.  My first meal might not happen until 11am or 12pm.  From that point on, my eating resembles a frequent feeding model, eating every 3-4 hours with my largest meals of the day falling after 7pm.

So what works best?  The truth is everybody is different and what works for some may not work for all.  I personally feel the frequent eating model is probably the most practical, doable and desirable for the largest number of individual.  Additionally, the frequent feeding model has a very successful track record with a large number of individuals and professional body-builders.  Most people cannot nor do they desire to fast for long periods and when they do- it leads to compensatory reactions like over-eating and greater fat storage.

But only you can determine what’s best for you.  I’m open to new ideas.  I don’t pretend to know what’s best for everyone.  I  know what’s best for me.  I’d be happy to help you find out what’s best for you.

Do Fat-Burners Really Work?

I’m sure you’ve heard a lot about Fat-Burners.   But do they really work?

The easy answer is some do and some don’t.  Not all fat-burners are  created equal.  or at least labeled equally.  There is good leeway in  what can be labelled a fat-burner.  For me, to be  a  “fat-burner” there  are three elements that must be met.

1.) Increase Metabolism

So What is a Fat-Burner?  A Fat-Burner is a product- that as it’s name suggests- helps to speed the fat-loss process.  The active ingredients should enable you to  burn more calories at an activity than you ordinarily would.

The most effective fat-burners or only “true” fat-burners in my opinion contained the ECA stack which is an acronym for ephedrine, caffeine, and aspirin.   Supplements including elements of the ECA were popular through the 1990s and early 2000′s, (and boy did I love them) but the marketing of ephedra- or ephedrine-containing stimulant combinations for weight loss  has been restricted.   So true fat-burners are harder to find, but they can be found.

Placebo-controlled studies have consistently found ephedrine in combination with caffeine to be effective in promoting moderate fat loss without increasing serious adverse events compared to the placebo.   Supplements containing Ephedra aka Ma Huang – with or without caffeine – have similarly been demonstrated to be safe and effective in studies ranging from 8 weeks to 6 months in length and resulted in additional weight loss than the placebo.

From the best research -  ECA  fat-burners can account for approximately an extra 2-3lbs a month than you would experience without them.  So depending on how much you have to lose, it’s worthwhile in my opinion.

2.) Suppress Appetite

A Fat-Burner should include the active ingredients to  suppress the appetite.  Some of the ingredients that are known to be effective for suppressing appetite include Ma Huang , bitter orange, phenylethylamine, green tea extract, kola nut extract, theobrama cocoa, yerbe mate, guarana and yohimbe.

3.)Increase Energy

The active ingredients in a fat-burner should increase energy .  Because of the stimulatory nature of fat-burners you will usually experience an increase in energy and performance.  Placebo controlled studies have consistently shown greater performance to be experienced with eca combinations than with placebo alone.   The best fat-burners combine the ingredients in a synergistic manner that enhances energy without resulting in a jittery over-stimulated state.

Fat-burners are not for everybody.  If you don’t have much weight or body fat to lose then there is no reason to lose it so fast.  Also, some people are more sensitive to the stimulant ingredients found in many fat-burners.  If you are sensitive to caffeine or if you have high blood pressure or a heart condition, then they might not be a good choice for you.

Fianlly, keep in mind that to get the best results with a fat-burner, you should take it in the context of a a sound nutrition and exercise program.  There are no magic bullets, but a fat-burner will aid many in the process and make the journey easier.  I especially like it when I’m cutting back on carbohydrates.  It  gives me a lot of extra energy that I normally don’t have when I lower carbohydrates.

I don’t use a fat-burner year round.  I do use a fat burner at times when I have weight to lose.  I usually cycle the days I use it and take a week off after a time-frame to keep it working as effectively as possible.  I just started back on the only fat-burner I use that I refer to as “the little yellow pill”.  For more info on the little yellow pill click here.

FaradayFitness1 Do Fat Burners Really Work?

Do Fat-Burners Really Work? If you want a free sample- just input your mailing information on my blog or email me!



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