“How do you get your protein?”
Vegans may be tired of hearing that question often. Vegans can’t be fit and bulky because they don’t get enough protein? Wrong. Vegan athletes like our SuperFan’s Dustin and Jaclyn are changing the negative stereotypes, proving that plant-based protein like our VeganSmart and Pea Protein can not only build strong muscles, but can also keep them healthy enough to bulk up, bike, swim, race and more.
Jackie Davis lives in Jacksonville, Florida with her husband and four kids. The whole family travels to Central America for managing the operations of their construction ministry. Traveling is not an excuse to give up on her healthy lifestyle. She is passionate about eating healthy, which she has defined as the right quality, quantity, and frequency of foods. She encourages many to make realistic long-term lifestyle changes.
Irving Hyppolite is a certified personal trainer and fitness director at Bally Total Fitness in Brooklyn, NYC. He’s been training for over 7 years and has worked with hundreds of people from professional athletes to the average gym goer. From years of working with countless of individuals he is now the CEO editor and chief of Quantum Leap Fitness, a platform dedicated to the physiological aspect of fitness and what draws the actions that we exhibit in today’s health and fitness.
Stretching is often overlooked, but when done can lead to a better posture, fewer aches and pains, a more positive outlook on life and a better body.
Stretching can help blood circulation for a healthier body and sends oxygen to your brain allowing you to think clearer and brighten up your mood.
“A simple jump rope can help you get in shape. To find the right rope length, step on the center of the rope and pull the ends up—the handles should come up to your armpits. Keep your knees soft, spine tall, abs pulled in and elbows by your waist. Gaze forward and begin bouncing with both feet—you only need to come up a couple of inches off the floor for the rope to pass under your toes. Jump as long as you can, then jog in place to recover before jumping again.”- Phyllis Bodie
Our Super Fans are dedicated to the #NaturadeFit lifestyle and love creating fun and unique recipes full of Naturade goodness, from smoothies to muffins, breakfast and so much more. We take pride in being able to work with such dedicated individuals from all walks of life who share the same passion of living a healthy lifestyle with our plant based, innovative products.
VeganSmart sponsors Vermont Sun Triathlon Series throughout the summer at Lake Dunmore in central Vermont. Nestled against the Green Mountains, just below Rattlesnake Point is Branbury State Park. The lake region is a most spectacular and pristine place to swim, bike and run. Novice and advanced athletes alike marvel the beauty of our courses and enjoy the mountains, lakes and streams of Central Vermont. This is the 29th year of running the Vermont Sun Triathlon triathlons and a vegan-friendly race it is! There is plenty of vegan-friendly food and snacks throughout the race including everything from fruits, vegan pizza and our VeganSmart included in the racing bags given out to the racers. Read more of Treading Lightly in Vermont’s detailed blog about race day.
While both of these physically and mentally relieving forms of fitness provide therapeutic values, choosing whether yoga or Pilates fits you best typically depends on a number of factors. For starters, you should know what kind of health benefits you are striving for. Are you someone who is looking for more of a strength and flexibility training program, or are you searching for more mentally focused exercises that can work to relieve stress? Knowing which areas yoga and Pilates focus on as well as what their workouts entail are key when deciding which one will accommodate your fitness needs.
If you already haven't figured out whether fish are friend or foe when it comes to maintaining a healthy diet, it's time for you to make a new companion. Seafood is always an excellent addition to any meal, bursting with a wide variety of nutrients that can also account for a remarkably high protein meal. Fish are typically rich in essential omega-3 fatty acids, and, according to the Harvard School of Public Health, eating multiple 3 ounce servings of fatty acid fish per week can reduce the likelihood of cardiovascular complications by 36 percent. So, where should you look for a health dinner?
One of the more incredibly abundant seafood options when it comes to healthy benefits, chowing down on some salmon a few times a week can offer you everything from boosting your brain to helping your heart. Salmon is packed with a long list of nutritional amenities, such as vitamins A, B, D and E, high quality protein as well as being loaded with omega-3 fatty acids. The good types of fat contained in a serving of salmon can reach up to three times the minimum recommendations for omega-3 fatty acids, which will in the long run provide better overall heart health, boost your immune system and strengthen your synapses in your brain.
Often marketed as a luxury seafood of delicacy, oysters can be just as rich in health enhancing qualities. First off, they are low in calories, which means that you can eat a greater portion with less calorie consequences and feel full quicker, which can help boost your metabolism. They are also an excellent low fat-high protein combination, with servings containing anywhere between 10-16 grams of protein with only 3-4 total grams of fat per 3 ounce serving.
While most tunas are often found to have the highest levels of mercury among the different kinds of seafood, albacore tuna are mainly caught in northern waters which generally tend to have lower mercury levels and more omega-3 fatty acids counts than other types of canned tuna. Albacore tuna is also a great low fat entree choice, with just one can only amounting to 8 percent of your total fat recommendation.
There's a rule of thumb when it comes to seafood: the smaller the fish, the lower the amount of mercury, which is good news for lovers of these small little guys. Sardines are often overlooked for their abundance in health benefits, and each can includes 35 percent of your daily recommendation of calcium, 15 percent for iron and 10 percent for potassium.
Fish to avoid
There are plenty of other types of fish that might taste just as delicious, but are nowhere near as healthy for you as the other types of seafood listed above. Mercury levels are one dynamic to look out for when it comes to choosing seafood, and fish such as grouper, marlin and swordfish might be considered more expensive and appetizing choices. However, it's strongly suggested that you don't eat more than three servings of these fish per month. Other types of seafood to keep an eye on are fish that tend to live for a long time, which leaves than more susceptible to mercury exposure and other diseases from the sea. Orange roughy is often included on many seafood restaurant menus, but this is a fish that can more often than not be found to live for more than 100 years! Bottom dwellers such as monkfish and catfish are also documented to live long lives while eating scum at the bottom of the sea, so be sure to limit your monthly servings of them as well.
We all tend to have the same misconceptions when it comes to cholesterol. It is produced by your body and the food that you eat and there are both "good" and "bad" kinds. But does all that really help us get any closer to understanding cholesterol? Knowing why maintaining cholesterol is important, the difference between "good" and "bad" as well as the lifestyle changes needed to achieve the adequate levels of it within your body are the only ways to comprehend the significance of cholesterol.
Why watch your cholesterol?
If you were holding cholesterol right now in your hand, you would be carrying a fat and waxy substance resembling the aftermath of a candle burning. Putting cholesterol into this perspective can help understand why having too much of it in your arteries and bloodstream is not a healthy idea. This is not to say that you don't want cholesterol in your body. We use it in a variety of ways:
- To produce testosterone, estrogen and vitamin D
- To strengthen the outer coatings of cells
- To help break down food and nutrients during digestion
The thing to remember is that your body produces all the cholesterol it needs by itself, which is approximately 1,000 milligrams a day to effectively function. When you start to add up all the cholesterol you obtain through eating food, the levels can get a little crowded. Too much of this fatty substance being ingested will produce too much plaque to start building up between layers of artery walls, which in turn makes it more of a challenge for your heart to circulate blood to the rest of your body. This is why you are constantly being bombarded with urgent messages to lower cholesterol.
Good versus bad
First thing to remember with this battle between good and evil is that HDL (high-density lipoproteins) cholesterol is the "good" kind and LDL (low-density lipoproteins) is the "bad" type. According to Harvard Health Publications, 60 to 70 percent of the body's cholesterol is carried in LDL particles. While these LDL specs work to take cholesterol to parts of the body that need it, eventually they will continue to build up excess cholesterol in arteries when you are consuming too much of the substance. HDL on the other hand essentially works as the opposite of LDL, by sucking up extra cholesterol and taking it to the liver so it can in a sense by recycled for other usage in the body. If you're trying to get more HDL in your system than LDL, it's important to note that lifestyle factors have more of an impact than dieting does.
Factors that lower cholesterol
When it comes to finding a cholesterol-effective diet, there are a few solid suggestions that can make an impact on limiting LDL and raising HDL. First off, eliminating trans fat from your diet is an effective measure toward reducing total cholesterol. This means being able to distinguish the difference between "fat-free" and "trans fat-free" on the product labels. Consuming nutrients that are found in whole-grain foods is another key source for limiting cholesterol intake, and eating foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids will help lower LDL cholesterol. While you might think that exercise is easier said than done, there are plenty of simple ways to get a sufficient workout in that doesn't require a gym membership. Changing your morning commute is one of the easiest ways to get the 30 minutes of daily exercise you need. Instead of making that drive, why not ride your bike or rollerblade to work? When you're on your lunch break, don't just sit on the computer or watch television while chowing down. Instead, pack a light lunch and go for a quick walk around town while you finish your meal.
When you make a few simple adjustments to your lifestyle, the affects can do wonders for your cholesterol levels. Thirty minutes of exercise each day can not only help you lose weight, but help stimulate HDL cholesterol in your body to work harder to remove unwanted fatty substances from your arteries. Other lifestyle choices that are attributed to raising cholesterol levels are smoking tobacco and drinking alcohol. According to the Mayo Clinic, your blood pressure decreases after just 20 minutes of sustaining from cigarette use, which also improves your HDL levels. The Mayo Clinic also recommends that those who are under the age of 65 should never exceed two drinks a day.