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Food as Energy

Your body relies on the energy and nutrients you get from food, so what you eat — and when you eat it — can either drain you or sustain you.

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Whenever you go more than a few hours without eating, your blood sugar drops, and that may be bad news for your energy. Plan on refueling with a healthy snack or meal every few hours to keep your blood sugar steady. And never skip breakfast! Eat something within an hour of waking, when your blood sugar is lowest. Choosing a breakfast with either soluble fiber or insoluble fiber — the kind in beans, fruits, vegetables and whole grains — actually protects against blood sugar spikes and crashes later in the day.

 

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Outsmart Sugar Cravings

Outsmart sugar cravings by eating small meals regularly to prevent blood sugar swings. For weak moments, keep fruit on hand.

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Got a sweet tooth with a mind of its own? It doesn’t have to rule your food choices. One way to keep sugar cravings in check is to eat small, regularly spaced meals or snacks to prevent hunger, irritability and uncontrolled urges for a quick sugar fix. Those snacks should contain protein, healthy fat and fiber to keep your energy level steady throughout the day: Think peanut butter on a whole-wheat pita or celery; hummus and vegetables; dried fruit and nuts; or grapes and walnuts. Remember to keep temptations like cookies or candy out of reach (and maybe out of your home or office completely). You’ll have an easier time making healthy choices. For those moments when your craving just won’t be satisfied, choose quality over quantity. A luxurious piece of dark chocolate is healthy and rich enough to hit the spot. Eat it slowly and savor it. Believe it or not, you’ll derive more pleasure from eating a small piece of chocolate than eating an entire bar.

source: the Cleveland Clinic Daily Wellness site

 

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MEN…Stop Skipping Breakfast!

How important is breakfast? Research suggests that men who skip the first meal of the day have an increased risk of a heart attack.

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New research published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association found that men who regularly skipped breakfast had a 27 percent higher risk of a heart attack, some fatal, than those who made breakfast a daily habit. Not a fan of a morning meal? Dietitians say that skipping meals is one of the worst things you can do for your body. Here’s why: Skip breakfast and your blood sugar levels plummet, leaving you irritable and more prone to overeating at your next meal. When you wake up, and your energy levels are at their lowest, starting the day on empty is a surefire way to tax your system even further. According to the researchers, forgoing breakfast may lead to obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes, which increase your risk of a heart attack over time. So start off your day right with a nutritious meal, like fruit and cottage cheese, oatmeal and berries, scrambled eggs, whole-grain cereal with milk, or toast with peanut butter.

 
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Posted by on September 30, 2013 in Cleveland Clinic Wellness Tips

 

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Lower Diabetes Risk by Walking After Meals

Lower your diabetes risk by taking a short walk after meals. Moving, rather than resting, can blunt blood sugar elevations after eating.

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Tempted to retire on the couch or take a quick snooze after eating? Reduce your diabetes risk — and perk up your energy levels — by going for a short walk instead. Researchers have found that a 15-minute walk after every meal will improve blood sugar levels better than a single daily 45-minute walk. Whether you put a leash on the dog, run errands or go for a quick stroll, being active after eating helps prevent post-meal blood sugar spikes. According to researchers, elevated blood sugars after meals are a key risk factor in type 2 diabetes and heart disease. And blood sugar control isn’t the only benefit. Research has shown that walking after eating lowered triglyceride levels as well. Lace up your sneakers before dinner, and then head out for a quick tour of the neighborhood after you’ve eaten.

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Magnesium helps your bones absorb Calcium!

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For strong bones, make sure you’re getting enough magnesium. Without it, bones can’t absorb calcium.

Many Americans do not get the recommended amounts of this essential mineral. Magnesium helps your immune system, maintains normal muscle and nerve function, keeps your heart rhythm steady and your bones strong. Having an adequate supply of magnesium in the body may also help protect against heart disease. Without this mineral, bones have a hard time absorbing calcium. Magnesium also helps regulate blood sugar levels and promotes normal blood pressure. Some foods that are high in magnesium include pumpkin seeds (pepitas), spinach, almonds, wheat germ, peanuts, Swiss chard, halibut, black beans, sunflower seeds, wheat bran, bananas, avocados, dried apricots and soybeans.

 

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