Clean Eating Has Health Benefits, But Can It Help Me Lose Weight?

Clean eating is a health-based, lifestyle approach to eating food as close to the way Nature created it.  It recommends enjoying seasonal veggies and fruit, minimally processed whole grains, dairy and lean protein with legumes, lentils, healthy oils and herbs.  This nutrient-dense way of eating can help reduce blood pressure, reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer and diabetes, but can it help you lose weight?!

When you include whole foods, that are minimally processed,  you embrace the natural fiber in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds as well as the healthy fats in omega-3 rich seafood and oils to work in your favor.  

These benefits help to leave you feel more full, and adding more vegetables to every meal allows you to lower the over all calorie density of any meal.  These recommended foods are also inflammation reducing versus processed foods such as refined carbohydrates and sugar, that increase inflammation.

According to CleanEating.com, this way of eating will, “shift your hormones from fat-storage mode into fat-burning mode which increases your metabolism.”  

In combination with cardio and weight-based training, you can light the fat-burning furnace inside of you! Studies have shown the metabolism boosting benefits of weight bearing exercise continues long after you’ve left the gym.

There is no magic-bullet panacea for fast weight loss.  It needs to be a life style change! That includes healthier choices in the kitchen and consistent fitness.  The energy and improved mood that you will realize may surprise you!

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The Astonishing Impact School Lunches Have on Childhood Obesity Rates

Issues surrounding the nutritional value in school lunches is a significant issue impacting childhood obesity rates in the United States.  

EverydayHealth.com states that kids who buy lunch at school had a 30% greater risk of obesity than those who brown bag theirs.

The stats revealed were a part of a University of Michigan study of over 1000 sixth graders, and results were published in the American Heart Journal.

The study found that in addition to the nutritional quality of the food as a factor in the statistics, was a lack of activity for those children.

Two or more hours of sedentary activity in front of a TV or video games increased the risk of obesity by 19%.

These two factors can lead to an unbalanced, dysfunctional metabolic profile (see my blog on Metabolic Syndrome from Feb. 28, 2013).

The solution involves

  • creating opportunities for activity for the young people
  • reducing their screen time
  • improving the nutritional profile of their lunches

Previously, the theory on childhood obesity centered around behavioral factors and hereditary or genetics factors.

According to the study, obese children had three common markers.  They were:

1.       Less likely to have consumed milk with in the previous 24 hours to being involved in the study 983% VS, 90%)

2.       More likely to consume school lunches on most school days (45% vs. 34% that home-pack)

3.       More likely to consume regular soda’s and soft drinks daily (40% vs. 30% who don’t consume daily)

4.       Had significantly less exercise.  Less than 20 minutes a day in the week before the study and less likely to participate in school or after-school organized sports.

Making positive changes to the growing problem of childhood obesity impacts everyone in the US, even if they don’t have children themselves.  If the upcoming generation is plagued with health issues due to an increase in metabolic profile issues, it burdens the healthcare system, doesn’t allow for the children to reach their potential in education, and creates mental health issues for them as a group. Let’s all get involved in some way to create positive change.

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