Saturday, July 28, 2007

What the Heck is BMI?

Your Body Mass Index (BMI) is a calculation of the ratio between your
height and weight used as a guideline to determine good health. Note
the word "guideline", it is not 100% accurate and does not work for
everybody. For example, if you are very muscular, you will have a high
BMI which might classify you as "obese". This is obviously not the
case, so I have included some other measures that you can use

Calculating your BMI (Body Mass Index) is easy:

Your Weight (in kilograms)
Your Height (in metres) 2

Underweight = <18.5
Normal weight = 18.5-24.9
Overweight = 25-29.9
Obesity = BMI of 30 or greater

BMI is a great tool to gage overall body fat but it may overestimate
body fat in athletes and others who have a muscular build and
underestimate body fat in older persons and others who have lost
muscle mass.

The percentage to body fat should also be taken into consideration.
This can be measured through fitness testing. Here is an acceptable range for men & women:

Women = 21-31%
Men = 14-25%

The placement of your body fat is also important. Waist circumference
is another important tool for health as the risk of heart and other
diseases increases with a higher measurement. Here are the magic
numbers to stay heart healthy:

Women = <35 inches
Men = <40>

Monday, July 09, 2007

The Many Styles of Yoga

Hatha? Vinyasa? Ashtanga? Is it all Greek to you? With so many styles of yoga available, it can be very confusing to find the right one for you. Here a quick guide to 6 of the most popular styles to help you demystify the different variations of this practice so you can fit one into your everyday life.

Hatha Yoga is a general term that encompasses many different styles of physical yoga. It includes postures, called asanas, breathing and stretching.

This is a fast paced, intense style of yoga with constant movement from one pose to the next. This is a more vigourous workout that builds strength and stamina. Power Yoga is based on Ashtanga.

Vinyasa Yoga involves Hatha-based movements that are matched to the breath. It often includes Sun Salutations (a set series of movements used to warm the body and prepare it for practice).

Based on the teachings of B.K.S. Iyengar, yoga poses are held over a long period of time with the primary focus on body alignment. Iyengar also uses props such as blocks, blankets and straps.

Pioneered by Bikram Choudhury, this style is usually referred to as "Hot Yoga" as it is performed in a room that is between 95 and 100 degrees. This promotes sweating which is a form of cleansing. There are 26 poses in the original practice.

This is spiritual form of yoga used to release Kundalini energy (found at the base of the spine). This is done through rapid and repetitive poses, chanting and intense breathing exercises.

Now say "Om".

Stay Healthy,

Understanding Food Labels

Knowing how to read food labels is crucial to knowing what you are putting into your body.

This may seem like a simple task but keep in mind that manufacturers want you to buy their product and are trying to make it seem as nutritious as possible.

Be a savvy shopper and read before you buy!

Here is some labeling terms that you may run into:
  • "Low Calorie " = Contains no more than 40 calories per serving.
  • "Reduced Calorie" = Contains 25% fewer calories per serving than regular product
  • "Calorie-Free" = Contains less than 5 calories per serving
  • "Low Sodium" = Containing 140mg of sodium or less per serving
  • "Very Low Sodium" = Containing 35mg of sodium or less per serving.
  • "Fat-Free" = Contains no more than 0.5g of fat per serving.
  • "Low Cholesterol" = Contains no more than 20g of cholesterol and less than 2g of saturated fat per serving
  • "Low Fat" = Contains no more than 3g of fat per serving
  • "Lean" = Contains no more than 10g of fat, no more than 4.5g of which is saturated fat, also contains less than 95mg of cholesterol per serving
  • "Extra Lean" = Contains no more than 5g of fat, no more than 2g of which is saturated fat, also contains less than 95mg of cholesterol per serving
  • "Free", "No", "Zero" = Containing no amount, or a trivial amount
  • "Sugar-Free" = Containing less than 0.5g per serving
  • "Good Source" = Provides 10%-19% of Daily Value per serving
  • "Light" = Can mean one of three things:
    • It provides 1/3 fewer calories or 1/2 the amount of fat as the regular product per serving
    • If it's a "low fat", "low-calorie" food, it can be called "light" if it provides 1/2 the normal fat present
    • It can be referring to the actual colour of the food itself
Stay Healthy,


Related Posts with Thumbnails