Sugary drinks may speed early puberty

Sugary DrinksA recent Harvard study proposes that a diet of sugary drinks can force the early onset of puberty by almost 3 months for girls. That doesn’t sound like anything to be worried about until you look at the long term effects of early onset puberty. The rush of sex hormones that are linked to high sugar spikes in the bloodstream can have a longer term detrimental effect on a woman’s health. Soft drink companies are not happy with this study, saying it is too early to point the blame at them. What the study does however, is point the blame at much more than just sugary drinks.

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The impact of high glycemic diets on pre-pubescent girls

The study focused on sugary drinks, but what researchers were focusing on was the level of sugar to look at the impact of high glycemic diets on pre-pubescent girls. The influx of glucose then triggers a rush of insulin and other hormones in the body. Some of these hormones are the sex hormones, and all of these hormones – in a blast in a pre-pubescent body can trigger an imbalance in trigger functions that will last through out the person’s lifetime. It can also induce menstruation 3 months earlier than the average girl would experience it.

Diet drinks don’t have the same impact

One of the things that the study looked at was whether or not diet drinks, and drinks with artificial sweeteners had the same impact on the hormone metabolism in the body. They did not find any evidence that a similar hormone trigger occurs with these. There is enough evidence that researchers are planning to pursue an expanded version of the study looking at the diets of pre-pubescent girls to further identify other factors from high glycemic diets that can impact the onset of puberty.

What you should know now

What you should know now is that early onset of puberty is not ideal for the health of girls. The research suggests that avoiding a high glycemic diet can help to avoid early onset. The average age of puberty should be about 13.8 years of age.

More fat lost through breathing than burning

A recent study by researchers at the University of New South Wales has revealed a startling fact about weight loss that is changing the way doctors and nutritionists think. They found that 80% of fat leaves the body via the lungs; a low 10% is actually burned and processed out via other methods like sweating and conversion of the fat to fuel in the cell. The knowledge that fat exits as mostly CO2 means that how you breathe is more important than what you are doing – within reason.

Just breathing hard won’t do it

Breathing ExercisesThis doesn’t mean that all you have to do is hyperventilate yourself to a healthy weight; the process is much more complicated than that. It still takes motion and physical stress to trigger the breakdown of the fat into its three parts, and then to convert the majority of the fat to CO2. What it shows is that the target goals and ranges for exercise are much different than initially suspected. Just putting in the time to burn calories won’t be as effective as doing blasts of exercise that are cause you to also breathe heavily.

What the evidence suggests

The main change is an understanding of the composition of fat after it has broken down. While it has been known for decades that it breaks down into a triad of elements, the ability to measure the percentage ratio of the elements has been lacking. This new study was able to measure the ratio effectively and show that 80% of the fat is converted to CO2 and exhaled.

Changing and adapting your routine

The old school of thinking really looked to heart rate and sweat as the primary indicator that fat burning was going on. Now, science is looking not just at the thermogenesis but also at the rate of respiration. The deeper you can breathe while exercising, the more fat you stand to lose. This may bring about a new approach to help those with morbid obesity or mobility problems that prevent them from fully exercising to lose weight safely.

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Short burst intervals just as effective as longer exercise

New findings are suggesting that people can get as much benefit from short, intense bursts of exercise as they can from longer sessions. This comes on the heels of new findings about the nature of fat loss that show that it is the content of the breath that is the determiner of the fat loss, not the caloric burn. This is also good news for aging populations, as it opens the door to redefine fitness and lifestyle habits that are more realistic.

How much is really needed to be effective?

exerciseThe research determined that a 10 to 15 minute session that included burst style repetitions of movements was beneficial. The burst is modelled after the Tabata method, where the person goes all out for 20 seconds only, rests for 40 and then repeats the cycle. The exercises done during the session should alternate focus on different muscle groups so that a whole body effort is achieved. The short blast of intensity causes significant calorie burn by changing the breathing pattern of the person.

Hitting the right balance with the rest of the lifestyle

Tied into these findings is a new definition of a healthy lifestyle that will be more realistic for people to keep. The old standards that advocated for several hours of exercise a week were not practical with today’s lifestyle. The new model focuses on creating a holistic balance with interval burst exercises at the core. This can make it easier for people to be more consistent with daily activity, and then add in longer sessions as desired.

Why this is important news for seniors

For seniors, this new research offers them a better way to approach staying fit and healthy as they age. The short burst of energy style exercise can often allow them to reach optimum heart rate without causing impact on joints and tissue. This means that more seniors can exercise longer to improve the overall quality of their lives. It also makes it easier to define the exercise, and to create routines that keep the daily exercise set engaging.

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How much you sit may seriously impact your health

The news has been making the rounds that sitting can significantly increase your risks for cancer and other diseases. They aren’t talking about having a sedentary lifestyle; it is the actual position of sitting that is being discussed. This means it won’t matter how healthy a lifestyle you live, it won’t undo the effect of just sitting for the majority of your day. In fact, new research shows that even sitting for just one hour can undo the effect of a day’s good diet and run around the park.

Why some people are saying “sitting is the new smoking”

The term “sitting is the new smoking” has caught on as a way to try and explain the health impact of sitting. It doesn’t really get it right, as it fails to address that the risk is coming from non-movement – not a carcinogenic habit. Unfortunately, for as flashy and dramatic as that catch phrase is, it could hurt the efforts to educate people about why sitting is so bad for your health. We already know that a sedentary lifestyle is bad, but just sitting at your desk? Yes, just an hour can be a part of what makes you ill – it has to do with the new understanding of how the body functions.

The new thinking about movement

Previously, most of the investigation about movement and exercise has focused on creating a type of snowball effect in the body. Everyone knows that the body keeps burning fat after you exercise as part of the recovery system, so it made sense to think that the same gym session would have lingering benefits for the rest of the body’s systems as well. Turns out, the body doesn’t work like that. Major systems, such as the lymphatic system, are dependent on movement to work correctly. If the lymph system is not in constant motion, then toxins are building in your system and your immune system is impaired. Sitting is one of the worst positions for the human body because it is not in motion and allows gravity to counteract circulation too.

The link between depression and inflammation

Scientists in Canada have discovered what may be a game changing factor in the successful treatment of clinical depression. They documented that in a comparison of brain scans between those with depression and those without, that there was a significant level of inflammation present in the brain of those with depression. Depression is one of the most difficult illnesses to treat as its cause is as yet unknown. While there is medication for it, it is not effective for everyone.

30 to 50% of patients with depression don’t respond to medication

A large majority of people diagnosed with clinical depression do not respond to medications. There are many other therapies that have limited success with alleviating symptoms, but these new findings could go a long way to explaining why medication may not work for most. It also stands to redefine depression and how it is diagnosed. Central to really understanding the impact of this study is determining the onset of the inflammation, does it come as the precursor or the result of the depression?

How the brain responds to trauma or infection

Inflammation is the natural response of the brain to trauma or infection. It is when inflammation stays after the initial incident that it becomes indicative of a inflammation-depressiongreater issue at hand. What scientists are trying to determine now is how prevalent is the inflammation in populations with a diagnosis of depression versus the population without. If there is a prevalent rate of inflammation in those with depression, then this will lead to the next question – which came first?

Which comes first?

If the inflammation is present in many people who have depression, then the next question is whether the inflammation is a symptom or a cause of the depression. Either will result in a radical reconsideration of how we treat depression. If the inflammation is the cause of the depression then there is a physiological treatment that needs to be found. If the inflammation is a symptom of the depression, reducing the inflammation rate may also reduce the symptoms of the depression.