childhood obesity

Greek Yogurt: Healthy in Every Way

 

Greek yogurt is a product I definitely endorse. Not everything in this world that is claimed to be good for you actually is. We have to pick and chose by doing some research and finding out the real deal out there.  As someone who lost 150 lbs, I can tell you first hand that a high protein diet is absolutely key in losing weight and maintaining it.  Greek yogurt is just that.  It is a snack that I think anybody who is trying to lose weight, tone up or simply looking to maintain a healthy lifestyle can benefit from. I have never been a big yogurt guy to begin with but the protein content contained in Greek Yogurt caught my attention and then as they say, the rest is history.  I really like to mix the plain kind right into a nutribullet drink, which makes the shake super thick and delicious. Other times if I am lazy I’ll just eat it out of the container like a normal yogurt.  Greek yogurt is not just a healthy “option” but it is proactively healthy for you and we should go out of our ways to eat it. There are literally thousands of ways to incorporate it into your diet.

One of the best things about Greek yogurt, besides its amazing protein content, is how cost friendly it is and how full it makes you feel.  As a guy who eats like a guy, and who is capable of stuffing their face, (because I like to eat) the fact that it satisfies me that much is a tough task. This makes it ideal for weight loss. The reason you feel that full is because it takes your body double the amount of time to digest this type of yogurt over traditional.  This will in turn cut down your cravings, helping you get to your next meal without binging on snacks, and also satisfying your sweet tooth, all the while taking in some goodies like protein, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium along the way. This promotes healthy bones as well.  One thing to watch out for is sugar content.  Plain Greek yogurt will always be the ideal way to go.  Not vanilla, plain.  If you chose to get a flavored one, look for containers with the least amount of sugar possible.  I can’t stress that part enough. Sometimes that is hard to avoid.  Even a brand like Chobani, which is known to be great brand, and it is, has 19G of sugar in their strawberry flavored choice.  Not a terrible amount of sugar but if you are trying to watch your sugar intake for what ever reason, 19G is still a decent amount.  The best of both worlds is going with the plain kind and dressing it up yourself by using natural sweetener like Stevia, then adding some fruit and granola and bam; you have a perfectly healthy option.  There is another factor to consider with plain Greek yogurt at the grocery store.  Some like the 2% because it tastes better while some prefer no fat and opt for the 0%.  The fat portion in the 2% or higher may include a little bit of saturated fat but will usually have no trans fat, therefore it is not that unhealthy for you.  If the 0% makes you feel more comfortable, go for it but remember: you want to enjoy it or else you won’t go back to it.  Another way to incorporate Greek yogurt into your diet is using it in savory dishes such as sour cream or a sauce thickener.  It can also be used as a veggie dip.  Recipes can be found all over the Internet.  Remember, Google is your friend.

Greek Yogurt has other health benefits too. I can make a whole piece just about probiotics, which are microorganisms found in Greek yogurt that support good digestion and assist in having a healthy gut.  Your gut area is one of the most crucial and sensitive areas of your entire body because that is where most bacteria lies.  Also, on a social level, people desire smaller waistlines and flatter stomachs.  The probiotics in Greek yogurt will promote a healthy gut and help you accomplish just that. In short, your digestive system / gut contains both good and bad bacteria. Greek yogurt contains a lot of good bacteria so by increasing the intake of good bacteria, it will leave less room for bad bacteria to exist, making many diseases such as diabetes harder to form. Greek yogurt is a great preventative measure. It also helps greatly with digestive & intestinal diseases such as Crohn’s disease and is the reason why people with those issues still can resort to yogurt.

Getting back to basics, yogurt is yogurt. It is probably the most common snack ever. I just hope now you know a little more about it and if the Greek variety was not something you were already doing, maybe you’ll try it now. Greek yogurt is simply a great snack that I would endorse to almost anyone with any goal. This is a weight loss website but I know most of us can benefit from eating more Greek yogurt. Both varieties can be had in large quantities on the cheaper side at any grocery store. Individual containers of yogurt can go for under a buck, sometimes 50 cents.  My favorite kind to buy is Fage 2%.  Hope you all enjoyed and please share.

Crossfit: A Guest Piece by Daniel Arfin

So I wanted to change it up a little bit this time.  My good friend, a guy I’ve known my whole life, fellow NY Mets fan, and partner in crime from back in the day Mr. Daniel Arfin joins us this week in giving us an insight to his workout regime.  I am lucky enough to talk to my friend regularly, and I’m always hearing about his Crossfit endeavors.  Crossfit is a program developed to offer a full-body workout that combines elements of cardio, weight lifting, gymnastics, core training and more to prepare the body for the unexpected.  From their website:  “CrossFit is the principal strength and conditioning program for many police academies and tactical operations teams, military special operations units, champion martial artists, and hundreds of other elite and professional athletes worldwide.” Arfin is so enthusiastic about it and I’m always amazed hearing about what he did next; which is basically on a daily basis.  He truly is a beast.  Crossfit routines really fascinate me and I have so much respect for this man.  That is why I thought it would be a good idea for you to hear about it from him.  A guy who completed Shaun T’s Insanity program with what seemed like ease, here is someone with credibility in my book.  This is what Arfin had to say:

I’ve been in love with Crossfit for almost 10 months.  For the large part of those 10 months I’ve been in the box 5 or 6 times a week.  I’ve found it to be right up my alley in achieving balanced fitness.  It addresses all areas to make you into a complete athlete.  Many people, including myself for a long time struggle with getting themselves to the gym consistently because they get bored of doing the same thing.  Crossfit hooked me so fast because there is always so much variety.  So it isn’t just challenging, it’s interesting.  It almost feels like you’ve never tried it before every day because there’s so many different things to do.  There are often several points of technique for whatever movement you’re doing.  Whether it’s for strength and you’re doing Olympic weightlifting movements, or if you’re just simply jumping on top of a box.  Everything looks easy watching someone who is experienced perform it, but it’s very easy to have one misstep and not do the movement correctly.  Especially with the Olympic weightlifts, it is imperative you do the movement right to keep moving up in weight, and to not get injured.  But there’s no prerequisite to joining in.  You can always scale the movements so that it’s tailored to what you can do.  If there’s a certain type of movement you’re not quite comfortable doing, you can do something else in its place.  An example of that would be if you do not want to do handstand push-ups against the wall, you could take a 45lb. plate and press it above your head instead.  Or if you can’t do strict pull-ups, you can use a band to assist you.  This way you’re still getting the benefit of the workout because you’re not really changing the movement, you’re only adjusting the workout to what you can do so you will always benefit from it.  It is for this reason that anyone can benefit from doing Crossfit so above all else that is why I recommend it.