Is Coffee Good For You?

Coffee Good For You

Coffee has always had a reputation as being one of the bad guys!

But… Is Coffee Good For You??

Health sites are always instructing readers on how to reduce or quit caffeine. Decaffeinated coffee and sodas are offered as “healthy” alternatives to caffeinated products. But… how bad is coffee really??  Why is it bad?

Before I set down this path of discovery I had decided I needed to give up my 1-2 cups per day.  I didn’t really know why I needed to give up coffee, but all the wellness sites seemed to feel a caffeine free life was the only way to a healthy lifestyle.

Just as I was preparing to grudgingly give up my morning mug of “oomph,” I thought I should do a little research.  After all, I wanted to know if the sacrifice was worth the potential health benefits?

I found plenty of sites telling me to give up coffee because it’s a stimulant…

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hmm well DAH, that’s WHY I drink it, but I started to notice a lack of evidence saying why coffee is bad. I actually started to notice that no sites were even stating what detrimental effects coffee was supposed to cause in a normal, healthy person.

This made me dig around further, I was determined to find research stating coffee caused a health problem. I didn’t find that at all.

What I found was more new research coming through showing coffee is actually good for you if… like everything else, it’s used in moderation.

We need to make a particular note, we are NOT talking about caffeine. The health benefits seem to relate only to drinking delicious brewed, roasted coffee. So don’t think drinking a caffeinated soda will bring any benefit except a caffeine hit. It seems to be the 1500 plus, chemical components of the coffee bean which hold the clue.

So, lets take a new look at things.

COFFEE IS ACTUALLY GOOD FOR YOU BECAUSE…

  1. Lowers the risk of depression in women
  2. Increases memory and concentration abilities.
  3. Reduction of between 28% to 36% in cirrhosis of the liver.
  4. Lowers the rate of liver disease by decreasing levels of enzymes that damage and inflame the liver.
  5. Coffee enhances hepatitis C treatment in rejuvenating the liver.
  6. 1-3 cups of coffee has been found to have a slight protective influence on the heart.
  7. 3-4 cups has been found to moderately reduce the chance of stroke.
  8. People who drink coffee are 25% less likely to develop Parkinsons Disease
  9. Cancer research is suggesting that coffee drinkers have a greater protection from some types of cancer. Its thought that the Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of the coffee bean could be responsible for the anticancer findings.
  10. Alzhiemers Disease is caused by a build up of beta-amyloid plaque. There is some early research which is suggesting coffee could play a role in somehow reducing this build up in regular coffee drinkers.

Whilst this is all wonderful news for me as a coffee drinker, I think it’s only fair to point out that people with a high cholesterol level should speak to their doctor before enjoying a morning cappuccino. The same antioxidant that has a positive affect on leveling insulin production in diabetics is a bad guy when it comes to those struggling with cholesterol issues or hardened arteries.

With the all the evidence on the table, my decision was not to give up coffee.

I just don’t feel there is any real health benefit to be gained by me foregoing my 1- 2 cups of coffee per day.  I’m healthy, I have no cholesterol issues and as someone who doesn’t mind a glass of wine or 3, I think my liver could use a little help that the coffee might give.

Haha, so next time you think about doing a liver cleanse, maybe you should include a nice cup of brew coffee.

 

Healthy Chocolate Dessert Ideas

When I began my healthy eating journey, I knew there would be some bumps in the road. I was used to eating a lot more junk than I should and I have a weakness for desserts, particularly chocolate desserts. This can be a major issue when you’re trying your best to watch calories and eat healthy.

There are ways around solving your chocolate dessert cravings without bingeing on your favorite high-calorie treats. I’m going to share three of my go-to healthy chocolate dessert ideas that are much healthier alternatives and will fix any sweet tooth.

Avocado Pudding

Healthy Chocolate Dessert Avocado PuddingI can’t remember how I stumbled upon this healthy chocolate dessert recipe, but it is one of my favorites when I’m craving something sweet. It has four ingredients and is super easy to make. You’ll need 1 avocado, 1 banana, 1 tbsp of cocoa powder (or carob powder), and 1 tsp of honey. Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until you have a pudding consistency. Keep in mind if you use carob powder, it will probably be sweet enough without adding the honey.

Paleo Treats

You can do a web search for this company. They specialize in delicious Paleo Treat Healthy Dessertchocolate paleo desserts. If you are not familiar with the paleo way of eating, the diet avoids all bad carbs which are found in white flour, refined sugar, and all processed food. These treats are made from natural ingredients and work well if you’re on the go. They are especially nice if you don’t have the time to make your own healthier versions of desserts.

Shakeology

Healthy Chocolate ShakeologyThis is an ultra-premium nutritional supplement. It comes in two flavors: greenberry and chocolate. It’s easy to guess which one is my favorite. I use the chocolate flavor daily as a chocolate milkshake. The huge difference is, there is no refined sugar or sugar substitutes (such as sucralose or aspartame) contained in the product. It is low in calories and even contains antioxidants. Best of all, there are tons of recipes available for it. Everything from drinks to chocolate pie. It’s so versatile and so good for you.

If you have a major sweet tooth like I do, you can still satisfy it without ruining your diet. Search for healthy alternatives. You would be surprised at the cool recipes people come up with for beating their chocolate cravings. I also indulge in the real thing at least once a week. I don’t go overboard but enough to be satisfied.

Healthy Meal Plans That Really Work

Healthy Meal Plans

Eating healthy meals to lose weight that also are tasty doesn’t have to be an elusive proposition. It does take a strong determination on your part to resolve to do so. There are tons of recipes out there, healthy and not healthy. It is sometimes time consuming to weed through to the ones you really enjoy plus are healthy meal plans that will help you lose weight.

Having healthy meals helps you to lose weight partly by decreasing the desire to eat unnecessary calories. Our bodies often signal our brains that we need to eat because it is missing a certain nutrient. If we answer that signal by eating more of the wrong things devoid of nutritional value, your body will signal again. This can contribute to continual weight gain. Of course, our body doesn’t plainly say, “hey, I really need some vitamin C in here, could you eat an orange please?” We need to be aware of the value of our choices. We need to make a conscious effort to provide our bodies with well rounded meals. If we don’t do this, our bodies can’t be expected to function at their best. We will likely at some point develop health problems either from poor nutrition, weight gain or both. This affects our overall enjoyment of life.

Simple Changes To Make Meals Healthier

Changing your daily habits to include healthy meals each and every day may take some effort at first, but once you slowly change these habits, it will get easier. There are a few simple changes that will automatically cut out a lot of extra calories. These are minor changes that can have a major impact. They are things that should be considered in your overall plan to lose weight.

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1. Use olive oil as much as possible when needing oil or a vegetable oil. No lard or saturated fats.

2. Avoid frying foods whenever possible. Baking is much healthier.

3. Avoid pure butter and even margarine (as most are full of chemicals). Use a butter specially made without transfat whenever possible. It is much more healthy for your heart.

4. Avoid meats with a lot of fat in them. Cut off the fat whenever possible.

5. Sit down when you eat. If your family resides with you, sit down together for meals.

6. Eat slower, chewing each bite at least 15-20 times before swallowing. This will help you enjoy your food more and give your body a chance to know when its full, avoiding overeating.

7. Limit your intake of sugary drinks like sodas and juices. They add unhealthy calories and actually cause you to want to eat more due to the fluctuation in blood sugar levels. Alcohol can have a similar effect.

Healthy Meal Plans Have: Healthy Meals, Healthy Snacking, Healthy Lifestyle

In addition to choosing healthy meal plans, to lose weight will include watching your snacking habits too. Healthier snacks between meals will help you feel better and keep your blood sugar level more balanced. These are all lifestyle changes. It doesn’t mean you can’t have a piece of cheesecake or a bowl of ice cream now and then. On the contrary actually. If your daily nutrition level is good, then it will actually allow an indulgence now and then in a snack that is less than nutritious.

Healthy Meal Plans Begin With Your Resolve

Deciding that you are going to have healthy meals to lose weight is half the battle. Some days you will be tempted to revert back to maybe some unhealthy habit, but resolve that you will find healthy meals that you enjoy. This will likely require some trial and error, but you will find them. Same thing goes with your snacking choices. Many diet plans out there can help you lose weight, but most diets are not healthy and they aren’t a plan for lasting weight loss. Only a lifestyle change that you make enjoyable will do that. So deciding on healthy meals to lose weight will be part of that overall health plan for your whole life.

Whey Protein Weight Loss

Whey Protein Weight Loss

Does whey protein weight loss programs really work?   Some dieters, especially women tend to be somewhat afraid of muscle.  They don’t want to look bulky rather than thin and toned.  But to get that toned appearance and to keep up results and to really lose weight in long term amounts, you have to have a certain amount of lean muscle mass.  This is something body builders seem to have a better grip on than the rest of us.  While you may not want to do everything that a bodybuilder does, there is at least one thing that they have right.

Whey Protein Weight Loss Really Works

The average bodybuilder consumes at least one protein drink on average along with other protein supplements on a daily basis if not at least a weekly basis.  And even if you don’t want to reach the heights of Arnold, you can still benefit from these protein packed smoothies or supplements.  If they are homemade, you tend to have more control over what goes into them and therefore how much or how little fat you will find in them.  You can pack them with not only soy or whey protein, but also with fiber, essential fats, yogurts, and other energizers and important elements.  And if you do it right, it can fill you for hours, resulting in you consuming fewer calories and not starving yourself at the same time, so your body will not panic.  Read about our Goal Weight Calculator.

This is only supported by the New York Obesity Research Center which conducted a study on the use of GNC’s soy based shakes.  Those using the shakes lost 3 times more weight than those with the same meals but without the protein shakes.  Kashi GoLean Meal Replacements were also shown to help people lose a significant amount more weight in 12 weeks than those on a traditional low calorie diet.

No matter what your weight loss goals, protein shakes will help if used at breakfast.  Harvard studies have shown that 6 hours after breakfast, those who consumed a protein shake showed more energy and efficiency than those consuming a high carbohydrate breakfast as well as a higher rate of metabolism.