The study of the human genome is progressing in spades, yet we still understand very little about it. It’s true, however, that genes have an impact on many areas of our lives. Appearance is definitely one of those areas and the most basic genetics course explains to everyone how exactly we inherit our parent’s traits, such as hair and eye color.
Obesity, as well as people’s unhappiness with their bodies/looks, is growing in Australia and globally. Despite the movements to project positive body image across all body types (for instance, fashion magazines promoting more heavier models), we the people are not looking at ourselves differently with new, rose-tinted glasses.
There may not be any conclusive studies showing that you will gain weight if you eat before bed, but there are enough studies showing that there is a correlation between late-night snacks and acid reflux. Even if you do not have symptoms of heartburn, silent reflexes manifesting into shortness of breath, difficulty swallowing, and coughing fits, are bound to arise, according to certain specialists. You should be having supper at least 3 hours before bed, preferably longer, if you want to keep your body functioning properly and make sure you stay fit and healthy.
Hemp oil is definitely nothing new. People have been farming hemp for thousands of years, and it has been developed for a number of uses since then. In today’s world, hemp has a number of uses, and one of those uses comes in the form of helping people recover from particularly stressful workouts. If you want to know more about using hemp oil to recover from exercise, read on for more information.
While eating healthy food like nuts from boxed.com is a step in the right direction for keeping healthy, it’s just one part of the deal. Exercising is another essential strategy for staying fit.
But then, going to the gym can be a hassle. Sometimes, we’re just too tired (and lazy) to go. Other times, there just isn’t enough time in the day. However, no excuse can diminish the role of exercise in health and well-being.
Fortunately, you don’t need to go all the way to the gym to enjoy the benefits of exercise. Stay fit with these simple and easy home cardio exercises.
The Kardashian/Jenner sisters are becoming some of the most powerful women in the world. Kylie is on the verge of being the youngest self-made billionaire, while Kim’s companies are booming and growing every single day. Khloe is the one who tapped into clothing, with her label Good American. We all know how much this Kardashian loves working out and keeping her body in the best possible shape. So, Koko and her partner are expanding their offerings with a debut activewear line.
Forbes has finally released its first-ever Top Influencers 2017 lists, and the winners of the Beauty and Fitness categories just gave us the right amount of encouragement and motivation to start off the day in a good mood! As for Fashion, a.k.a. one of the most anticipated categories, we have to wait up until September to check out the winners!
Forbes’ Top Influencers list is extremely important business-wise, as it helps determine, define and improve the winners’ future in the market, as well as actually strengthens this new business model in the industry and in our society, i.e. the idea of being an influencer. Influencers are, in fact, individuals who have the strong power to affect certain decisions of others, and their importance and, well, the influence, has exponentially increased in the past few years (especially thanks to social media such as Instagram and Snapchat).
The Forbes Top Influencers 2017 list’s jaw-dropping numbers just confirmed that this is not a perishing phenomenon, and we are very likely to go check more Top Influencers lists in the years to come, too. As for the categories, aside from fashion, beauty and fitness, the list includes influencers in the sphere of comedy, travel, gaming, entertainment, parenting, food, tech & business, and sports, with the names of the winners about to be released later this year.
So, let’s check out the winners in our favorite categories!
Forbes Top Influencers 2017: Beauty
#5. Shannon Harris (@shaaanxo)
Known online as ‘Shaaanxo’, Harris has grown in popularity ever since starting vlogging in 2009 from her home in New Zealand, and has now a beauty brand named xoBeauty, through which she sells praised lashes and makeup brushes.
#4. Nikkie de Jager (@nikkietutorials)
With over 7.2 million followers on Instagram, Nikki de Jager is the Dutch queen of makeup, and in 2017 she has even added “makeup creator’ to her already astounding resume, thanks to a collaboration with professional line Ofra.
#3. Huda Kattan (@hudabeauty)
Former finance employee Huda Kattan ventured into the beauty industry back in 2010, when she understood finance wasn’t actually her thing. Fast-forward to 7 years later, she is one of the top 3 beauty influencers in the industry, with even a makeup line sold at Sephora. She is the living proof one should never stop chasing her dreams!
#2. Michelle Phan (@michellephan)
Michelle Pan has been ruling over YouTube for more than a decade now, never stopping growing in popularity. She is also the cofounder of a cosmetics subscription box named Ipsy which, according to Forbes, “was valued at upwards of $500 million in 2015.’
#1. Zoe ‘Zoella’ Sugg (@zoella)
Here you have Forbes’ Top Beauty Influencer of 2017 ” Zoella! With three books (one of which is the best selling ‘Girl Online’), over 11.6 million subscribers on Youtube and a sellout beauty line at Superdrug, Zoella has re-shaped the beauty industry with her talent, passion, determination and simplicity, and we honestly couldn’t feel more inspired!
Forbes Top Influencers 2017: Fitness
#5. Joe Wicks (@thebodycoach)
‘Fitness’ is one of Instagram’s most followed categories, and so is Joe Wicks! With an audience of 5 million, Wicks is very busy posting fitness tips, vlogging cooking series, and we bet his growth is not going to decrease in the years to come.
#4. Michelle Lewin (@michelle_lewin)
According to Forbes, the Venezuelan “31-year-old bodybuilder has raked in as much as $10,000 per Instagram post thanks to partnerships with health and workout brands,’ so we are not that surprised she managed to score this list’s fourth position. If you love fitness and would like to follow someone who is as fit as determined, Lewin’s account won’t disappoint you for sure!
#3. Emily Skye (@emilyskyefit)
Aussie Emily Skye has never stopped being a fitness guru ever since starting her social media account back in 2011, growing a fortune via apps and video tutorials, too. She is about to release a sneaker collaboration with Reebok in 2018.
#2 Jennifer Selter (@jenselter)
With 6 different Instagram accounts and over 10.6 million followers on her main channel, Selter is the New York-based fitness guru everybody turns to in order to get the best daily fitness motivations.
#1. Kayla Itsines (@kayla_itsines)
Turning a passion into a business and empire is no small feat, but Kayla Itsines perfectly managed to do so. With a grand total of 6.6 million followers on Instagram and an app, “Sweat with Kayla’, that generated $17 million in revenue in 2016, we are not that surprised Forbes named her the number one Top Fitness Influencer of 2017.
Photos courtesy of Instagram
Working out and getting your body moving is always a good idea for many reasons. It promotes circulation, removes toxins via sweat, builds muscle, strengthens endurance, and can of course aid in burning fat. There are different workouts and strategies depending on preferences as well as goals, but if the goal is to burn excess fat, what is the best strategy?
Working out in the mornings or on an empty stomach is one of the best ways to burn excess fat. The reason behind this is better explained when we understand how our body uses glucose as fuel and how we can then get to our fat stores. Glucose is our body’s preferred source of fuel for energy. Ideally the sources of glucose would come from complex carbohydrates such as legumes, vegetables, fruits, grains, and so on, rather than simple sugars like white flour or sodas. The main reason the former are more desirable is because they contain nutrients, as they have not been processed, as well as fibre, which helps keep our blood sugar levels in check and does not result in “sugar crashes’ the way the latter would. We then use this energy source throughout the day and we even use it up when we are asleep!
However, when we take in more glucose than we actually need in terms of energy throughout the day, our body stores this excess amount into our livers, which is called glycogen. We keep it stored for “emergency’ cases, so it is essentially our body’s way of being prepared and having a “back-up’ option readily available to us. What this means is that when we are not getting enough glucose, the next thing our bodies will choose to burn for fuel is the glycogen stores from our livers we have saved up. Only after our glycogen stores have been used up does our body then begin to burn fat for fuel. This is when exercise becomes most effective if fat loss is the ultimate goal.
As mentioned, even when we are asleep, we are still in need of energy – even just as a result of having dreams throughout the night. When we then wake up in the morning, our glycogen stores are actually at their lowest amount compared to any other time throughout the day, and we are therefore closest to burning fat during this time, before eating anything new. This is why when we choose to focus on doing some physical activity in the mornings on an empty stomach, our bodies will burn more fat than any other time since it is the only viable energy source our bodies have readily available to them. Of course, when you work out intensively, you will eventually get to the fat stores as well, but mornings on an empty stomach is the optimal time for burning fat in the sense that there is no “interference’. Whether your preferred choice of exercise is going for a long walk, going for a run, biking, or doing yoga or pilates, if your goal is to burn fat rather than focus only on endurance, this is the best strategy. Once you wake up, it is best to always drink a few glasses of water, do some stretches in order to ease into the physical activity of your choice, and then get ready to shed some fat!
It is important to note that in terms of endurance, eating before working out is a good idea as it will provide you with more energy. It is also a better idea to eat something if you do feel too tired or light-headed working out on an empty stomach or in the case of having low blood pressure or hypoglycemia. If any of these are the cases, you can still eat a small healthy snack or light breakfast in order to have a productive workout session and avoid any possible issues. Some good options for quick snack ideas pre-workout could be a handful of nuts and/or seeds, some cut up carrots or apples, or some yogurt. These options will provide enough fuel for you to still have a successful workout, even in the morning!
Working out in the morning also gives you the benefit of getting it out of the way, speeding up your metabolism, providing consistent energy throughout the day, as well as promoting a better and deeper sleep at night. It is also often easier to find excuses to avoid working out in the late afternoons or in the evenings as plans can change or develop, and/or the work day can be particularly draining or stressful, making it much more tempting to opt for a relaxing evening in rather than trying to muster up energy to commit to a workout.
What you do after working exercising is also just as important as what you do before. No matter how much you may enjoy your workout, your cortisol levels rise when you are physically active – the amount of course depending on the intensity of the workout. When our cortisol levels rise, our bodies are in a mode of stress, which makes them hold on to fat. The best way to counter this is to make sure to eat something – ideally a complex carbohydrate, right after working out. The insulin released after eating these types of carbohydrates can actually balance cortisol levels in our bodies getting us out of the stress-mode. This means more relaxation throughout the day and our bodies not remaining in a “panic’ and stubbornly holding onto fat.
After your morning fitness routine and stretches, you can opt to make a delicious green smoothie packed with nutrient-filled greens and fruits, or eat a banana with peanut butter, or have a healthy and filling home-made granola bar. All of these are delicious options that will steadily increase blood sugar levels therefore triggering the release of enough insulin in order to lower cortisol levels, leaving you stress-free, and still aiding in helping your body lose fat!
Photo courtesy of Peace Love Shea
Don’t miss: How to Get Skinny Legs: The Perfect Workout Plan
Working out is one of those things that we love to hate on or simple love without any additions to the emotion. We need to work out in order to keep in shape, this we know well. We also need to work out to ward off diseases apparently, to keep our organs working properly and to strengthen our body in general, ensuring we are always at our best, no matter what our weight. There are many myths connected with exercising as well though, things told by those gyms and those weight loss programs, the personal trainers and the “experts’ in the field alike. They may mean well, but they just end up making us feel worse overall. There are so many elements to each and every person’s body that it is imperative that one understands him or herself best before following that well-meant advice to the tee. As such, there are those quite knowledgeable in the field, who offer some sage advice. It is rather important to understand the truth and lies about working out correctly, which we are discussing below!
1. You are a unique individual: Just because someone else with an incredible body and form tells you to do something thus, it does not mean that it is something meant for you as well. You as a 25-year-old have a very different shape, size, ability, point of no return and everything else than your 25-year-old best friend, let alone a stranger. It makes no difference. You need to work out in a way that it is right for you, that it helps your body get into the shape you want it to be. Everything about you is different than all the rest so do not give up when you realize that what works for one person does not also work for you. You will find your own step sooner or later.
2. Weight loss can also mean health loss: It may seem to be amazing that you are losing a whole lot of weight all at once, dropping 5 kilos a week, but you are actually drastically affecting your health as well, something you do not want to be doing. It is better to lose your weight slowly but steadily, allowing your body time to adjust to each pound less weighing you down. Should you go too fast, you will run into some major problems.
3. Weight loss is not necessarily fat loss: You may be losing weight as you go on one diet or another, but that may not be fat at all but merely water loss, leading to a dehydrated body more than a thinner, healthier one. The amount of muscle you have to body fat is most important here and losing on the muscle mass will only hurt your stamina, physical abilities and general functioning in life. Use measurements instead of a scale to make sure you are keeping in shape and are fit enough, while ensuring a proper body composition with a balanced scale of muscle, fat, water and overall density.
4. Stress can be causing the majority of your problems: An obsession over a healthy lifestyle can cause way too much stress and have the opposite effect as well. If you have missed an aerobics class or a training session, it matters not. Just enjoy the moment and reschedule, make up for it the next time around without allowing it to eat you up from the inside. You’re only human so you will need to take a deep breath and relax in order for your healthy lifestyle to work out properly.
You have been told many different myths throughout your life. It is time to have them seen as defunct, as outdated and incorrect, not taking any of the factors stated above into consideration. But which lies have been the worst?
This program will transform your body! Yeah, okay. The truth is that health is a lifestyle and not a series of programs meant to transform your body. You cannot start a workout program for a few weeks or months, lose the weight and then expect it to stay off when you begin to eat those cheesecakes again. It can be a fantastic way to kick start a healthy lifestyle but it does not end there. There should be no countdown until it ends. It should become a part of who you are. But you must already know that, even if you are enrolled in a program or two or three‚Äö√Ñ√∂‚àö√ë¬¨‚àÇ
You do not need to sleep so much as you get older: In a way it is true. You no longer need 9 to 10 hours of sleep a night like a child would. However, you do need at least 7 hours of sleep, preferably 8, or at least resting the eyes and the brain so that you can function normally once again the next day. A lack of proper sleep will snowball soon enough and you will have a load of health problems to deal with. You will need that sleep in order to have a proper workout session.
Your body will conform to whatever you decide to do with it: Once again, in a way it is true. But your body is smarter than you think and will respond to a lack of proper calories and nutrition by breaking itself down. If you want to be losing on energy or want a slower metabolism, along with increased appetite levels, you should keep to that irrational manner of controlling the body. You will certainly not be able to hold on to your health however. Working your body too hard and stressing it out will not be of any help.
You can lose a lot of weight all at once: You can lose a lot of weight or you may not. You can feel healthy doing so or totally lose interest in everything. At the end of the day, you just need to slow down, a lot. You will not be losing too much weight at once if you are actually taking a healthy route to fitness, will plateau and even see yourself barely budging towards your goals. You do not even want to be seeing extremes as that can have an adverse effect overall. Don’t feel guilty either for any small “mistakes’ made on your way. That is a sure way to ruin any bit of success gained over the last bit you have been working on something.
The more you work out, the more fit you will be: Endurance is a very good thing and the more you work out the better you will feel but not all in the same block of time. Your body does amazing after 45 to 55 minutes of really pushing it to its limits but you do not want to stress out your body and produce excess cortisol, leading to a negative impact on your health. Make sure your body is nice and stimulated but not pushed too far that it can lead to failure at any given point.
You need a variety of workouts every time: Now this is certainly not true as you also need to build endurance. There is nothing wrong with doing the same thing for 45 minutes straight, tough it will bore you to no end as well. Variety also helps you prevent hitting a plateau, but it helps condition strength and gives your body a chance to adapt to the moves themselves. You should have a plan of different moves, one batch a days that you repeat every other day or every week just to keep changing it up while still working your muscles productively. Plus, you should switch around the types of workout you do every 4-6 weeks just to give your body a chance to work on something different, on a different set of muscles that need your unwavering attention, at least for a certain period of time.
Photo courtesy of The Blonde Salad
Don’t miss: 5 Easy Ways to Get Rid of Thigh Fat
When it comes to our fatty regions, women are very self-conscious. This means that we will go to any length to hide those dimples and erase any trace of extra weight on our bodies. There are a few ways one can effectively reduce the thigh fat in a shorter time period. We all want that of course, but you have to work at it. There is no single exercise or diet that specifically targets the thigh fat alone but there are changes in your routines that can be made that will ensure those limbs of yours look toned instead of flabby and full of cellulite. So how do you reduce thigh fat?
1. The Benefits of Cardio Exercise: You can reduce thigh fat by going for high impact cardio that really gets your heart pumping and body moving. You have to burn the calories, burn them fast and in large amounts. 60 minutes of cardio 5 times a week will ensure you are as fit as can be in no time at all. Just make sure you are working your legs the whole time.
2. Go for Height: Incline your treadmill or simply go for a jog uphill. You don’t need to run but keep the pace competitive and keep going no matter what. Even if you walk around most of the time, going uphill, you will be working those thigh muscles and toning those legs. You burn more calories on the incline so next time you decide to go anywhere that’s uphill, choose to walk instead, especially if it will take you over 30 minutes. This way you get everything from your thighs to your hamstrings to your calves and buttocks.
3. Go for Yoga and Pilates: You want to spot tone and these practices are the best way to do so. While the cardio will drop your weight, the yoga and Pilates will build up muscle on your inner and outer thighs as so many of the routines are focused on the lower body and the strength in your back. You will thus look leaner, slimmer and fitter. It is definitely worth signing up for.
4. Ensure You Have Your Breakfast: You might want to fast most of the day or decide you are eating only a single meal. Well, if that’s the case then jumpstart your metabolism from early on in the morning and just grab a snack later in the day that’s filling but not a full meal. If you have a better metabolism, you will make sure your legs and body in general is leaner. Eat protein and fibre-filled complex carbs and then go for that morning cardio. You’ll be pumped, your body will work well and your day will go by smooth and nice. You’ll be losing fat and building muscle, while the carbs give you the energy to sustain you throughout the day. Also, don’t skip eating the whole day. If you aren’t feeling hungry, then snack often, keep it under 150 calories and fill up on energy.
5. Drink a Lot of Water: Instead of sodas or any juice you may think you want, go for water. It has absolutely no calories, it will keep you hydrated and the constant peeing will flush your body of a lot of unwanted things. It helps with your weight loss plans and encourages portion control. Honestly, it’s the best thing you can be drinking. Have some milk for calcium if you wish early in the morning with your breakfast so that your metabolism works well, then spend the day drinking water, while you end the evening with a cup or two of tea.
Photo courtesy of The Blonde Salad