Posts tagged ‘naked apartments’
My post featured at the Naked Apartments Blog yesterday:
We are all aware that our country is experiencing an obesity epidemic of gargantuan proportions. As New Yorkers we think we’re different (and, let’s be honest, better) than the rest of the world, but sadly in this case we are not. Although we live in the most walkable city in the country and for the most part can pull off spandex and ankle booties, the truth is that we too are in the crisis.
Our beloved city has watched as our waist size has increased and finally is putting her Christian Laboutin heel down! New York City is taking a stand with a new health campaign. First topic—sugary beverages.
Did you know that Americans are consuming on average 200-300 more calories PER DAY than we did 30 years ago? More than half of these calories come from sugary beverages, such as soda, iced teas, and sports drinks.The New York Health Department surveyed adult New Yorkers about their consumption of these drinks and the results showed that more than 2 million down at least one sugar-laden drink each day. That’s on average an extra 250 calories, and that adds up….quickly! Did you know that a 20oz Cola contains over 15 teaspoons of sugar? Yikes!
Now is the time to take a look at your diet and see what types of beverages you enjoy. If you eat healthily and work out yet can’t figure out why the pounds aren’t dropping, take a look at what you are drinking. If sweetened beverages play a role in your day-to-day diet they might be the culprit. Especially if you enjoy alcohol during Happy Hours or on the weekend, it can all add up.
So, what can we do to limit sweetened-beverages?
*The best change we can make is drinking water, plain and simple. As New Yorkers, we are lucky enough to enjoy safe, great tasting tap water. But if you just can’t stomach it, try adding a squeeze of citrus, slices or strawberries, cucumber, or mint. Get creative!
*Use seltzer as a vehicle. If you don’t like plain Club Soda, try adding a splash of fruit juice to sweeten. And for all the vodka tonic drinkers, drop the tonic and use seltzer instead (Tonic is just carbonated water with sugar and quinine)
*Wean yourself off of your soda habit slowly. No need to go cold turkey. Start by diluting your soda a bit with fizzy seltzer, and as time progresses, add more seltzer and less soda. In a few weeks, you’ll be surprised at how easy the switch was!
*Check the sugar amounts in your drinks. I’m amazed at how much sugar sports drinks, smoothies, and coffee drinks contain. I’m talking teaspoons of sugar per drink! You don’t want that, do you?
And if those tips don’t help you, just take a long, good look at the new advertisement (featured above). It’s shock value and vomit-inducing graphics might be enough to stop you.
Come on New Yorkers! Let’s make our city proud!
Photo courtesy of blue ocean powder on Flickr
Check out my post at Naked Apartments on keeping a food journal. I just started mine up again, using an old fashioned pen and paper!
Medical doctors, dietitians, integrative healers, and other experts in the health world all agree that keeping a food journal or diary is an important tool for losing weight. Writing down every (and we mean EVERY…no cheating) morsel of food you pop in your mouth makes you hyper aware of your eating habits and will shine the spotlight on some not-so-healthy patterns.
I’ve kept a food diary for a long time, testing out different formats. Everyone has his or her preferred style and there’s no right way to keep one. Over the years my diary has focused on food-mood connections (leading me to realize I’m a total nightmare after eating sugar) and targeted my food sensitivities (leading me to nix gluten). These days, I’m just keeping a straightforward food diary. This simple act of writing down what I eat and when I eat it has proven to be very successful. Seriously, who wants to write down that they’ve eaten a large slice of carrot cake from Buttercup Bake shop…with extra icing…at 11pm on a Monday? I’ve had to do that, and trust me, you don’t feel so good recording it.
If an old-fashioned pen and notebook doesn’t work for you, there are many online food diaries to help you. I’ve used My Food Diary for a few months and really liked it. For the low cost of $9/month, you have access to thousands of foods in their database. You just click on the food you ate and automatically the calorie, carb, protein, and vitamin counts are entered into your daily totals. If the food is not listed, you can manually add it to your “fridge.” The site rewards you with smiley faces when you’ve eaten healthy foods, such as fruit, and scolds you with a frownie face if you’ve eaten too much sugar, as an example. Other popular sites include www.sparkpeople.com, www.fitday.com, and www.my-calorie-counter.com.
In the end, it doesn’t matter which method or format you choose. The point of a diary is to keep you up close and personal with your weight loss goals. I not only guarantee you’ll be surprised at what you learn about the way you eat (and all the things you didn’t realize you were eating), but that you’ll be more likely to make the positive changes necessary to drop the pounds.
My blog post from Naked Aparments:
Here’s something new to add to your nighttime get-ready-for-bed ritual: Tongue scraping.
I’ll be the first to admit it, this sounds like a medieval torture, but I assure you it’s not. A tongue scraper does exactly what it sounds like it does—it scrapes the top layer of the tongue, getting rid of yucky leftover food, debris, and plaque. Here’s a fun fact: Did you know that approximately 70% of the bacteria in your mouth is on your tongue? It’s true. These microbes contribute to plaque on your teeth, causing periodontal problems, gum infections, tooth decay, and in the worst cases, tooth loss. No thanks!
If that’s not enough to get you to use a scraper, try my #1 reason: Cleaning the tongue daily is known to cut sugar cravings. Why? Because you are ridding your mouth of any food debris that may be lingering. It’s amazing (but true!) that cravings can be triggered by tiny food particles left in the mouth from earlier in the day. So, to keep those cravings away I scrape, scrape, scrape.
Even better than that—Do you know the sense of accomplishment and excitement you feel when you floss your teeth (you DO floss your teeth, right?) and some big hunk of food comes out? Well, you get that same end result when you scrape your tongue. Just watching all that gunk come out will make you proud.
Tongue scrapers are super cheap and can be found easily. So no excuses, and repeat after me: Brush. Floss. Scrape.
Happy Monday! I am currently on 3 hours of sleep right now after an INCREDIBLE Phish weekend, so there is NO way my 3 remaining brain cells are going to function to help me write something witty and clever. So here’s a post I wrote at Naked Apartments last week. Enjoy!
Reusable shopping bags, once the sole accessory of the environmentally conscious have now become mainstream. New Yorkers, lacking the back seat of cars to fill, are notorious for carrying a plethora of bags around with them at all times(I lovingly call myself “The Bag Lady”). So I begin offering kudos to all of us for being trendy and saving the planet at the same time!
An interesting problem has seem to have um, grown (pun intended), due to our repeated daily use of reusable totes. Back in May, a microbiological study done in North America found that our eco-friendly bags are the harbingers of ridiculously high amounts of bacteria, yeast, mold, and coliforms (pathogenic bacteria that can cause food poisoning). Yuck…and scary!
That being said, let us look at the day in the life of your reusable tote, shall we?
Your bag is filled with gym clothes in the morning for your post-work gym session. You bring it on the subway, and rest it on the subway car floor because it’s too heavy and cumbersome to hold. From here it sits on the ground at work and then in a locker room at the gym. You head to the supermarket after your workout to pick up produce and meat for dinner, drop it in your tote, and head home. Congratulations! Your bag has come into contact with every dirty surface possible in the city (and god knows there are a lot of them) and then got filled with unwashed fruits, vegetables, and possibly leaking meat. Let’s not forget your dirty clothes, which are mixed in as well. (Bet you $100 bucks you don’t wash your tote bag when you get home for the next day. Yeah, didn’t think so.)
In the same microbiological study I mentioned earlier, researchers found the 64% of reusable bags were contaminated with bacteria and 30% had bacteria counts higher than what is considered safe for drinking water. Also, 40% of bags had yeast or mold and dangerously high amounts of coliforms, aka fecal intestinal bacteria. The amount should be zero.
Experts suggest that you keep totes for your gym clothes and your groceries separate, and also wash your bags as frequently as possible. You can bet mine went straight to the wash with hot water after I read this study, reported in the The National Post.
So what’s the moral of the story? While being trendy and carrying an environmentally friendly tote is both a fashionable and green “DO,” lugging billions of unnecessary and harmful bacteria with you is a serious DON’T. Food poisoning and illness don’t look good on anyone. So be careful!
Happy Friday, friends! I hope you have some great weekend plans ahead of you. I’ll be roadtrippin’ to Hartford, the Berkshires, and Saratoga Springs to see Phish play their final shows of their summer tour. Can’t think of a better way to spend a weekend!
Thank you to those who left comments about topics they want to know more about. The invitation ALWAYS stands, so continue to ask away.
Here are this week’s top stories:
Most importantly, check out my post from Naked Apartments on what might be lurking in your reusable tote bags.
Do we need milk in our lives? I believe the answer is NO.
Some tips on how to build a better relationship with your food. Cause it’s all about the love.
Yoga and eating. A perfect partnership to curb your eating.
As if you needed another excuse to eat chocolate!
All veggies are good for your health, but these are REALLY good.
All this talk about health care reform. How about HEALING reform?
We all love dirty secrets. Especially ones about body fat.
Very important for summer–natural remedies for mosquito bites. Written by a fellow diva friend!
I knew it was too good to be true when the Arc trainer at the gym showed I had burned 200 calories in 15 minutes
My post today over at Naked Apartments…
Tell me if this sounds familiar: Wilted lettuce in the fridge. Mushy cucumbers. Dried-out broccoli. Overripe bananas. Yeah, thought so. It’s always been a race against time to finish all the produce I buy from the supermarket or farmer’s market. Especially during summer when everything looks so good and is quite irresistible. Unfortunately, I never seem to be able to eat all of my fruits and veggies before something starts to go bad, squishy, or grow fuzzy mold.
I’ve found the answer to our problems, fruits and veggie lovers: Debbie Meyer’s Green Bags! You may have seen these at your local health food store or advertised on TV. These greenies are storage bags for your produce that will extend the shelf life of your fruits and vegetables without chemicals. Cool, right?
Here’s how they work: after fruit and vegetables are harvested, they begin emitting a gas called ethylene, which speeds up ripening and aging. Green bags (non-toxic) are formulated to absorb and remove the ethylene, thus keeping your produce fresh for longer.
Check out the website to order Green Bags and delve into the how’s and why’s of this cool product. A word of caution, however: the manufacturers say that you can keep produce safe for weeks. I would advise, however, not to keep produce longer than a week or so. Taste something that’s picked fresh and then something that’s been lying around for too long, and you’ll see what I mean. Plus, fresher foods are more nutrient dense than the not-so-fresh.
Green Bags are a great addition to your kitchen, will keep your food fresher for longer, and will save you some cash, too—they’re reusable AND you won’t be wasting food anymore.
Check out my latest post at the Naked Apartment’s blog:
July 16th, 2009 by Amanda Goldfarb
New Yorkers have this “thing” with time. We never seem to have enough so we obsess on how to make more of it. And when we find a spare minute here, another there, we still never seem to maximize our potential. Five minutes of TV turns into an America’s Next Top Model marathon on VH1. We take classes on how to manage our time, all the while we could be using that class time to actually DO something. So when we read that we should be exercising 30-60 minutes a day, we laugh. Who has the time for that?
I used to be a five-day-a-week morning gym rat. I loved it. I felt that I somehow belonged to an elite workout club whose members were hardcore, 6 a.m. exercisers. We bounded through our day with that smug “look at me, I’ve already exercised!” smile on our faces.
Sadly, I am no longer a card-carrying member. A move to another borough, a longer commute, and evening classes has thrown a wrench into my exercise schedule. I’m one of those, sigh, evening workout-ers. And because something always pops up after work, my workout schedule is a mess. Or actually non-existent. But I still need to work out. How can I make some time to get my daily exercise?
Here are 5 easy tips:
1. Wear a pedometer: A very basic exercise tool, this little gadget measures the amount of steps you take. The goal is to take 10,000 steps, which is about 5 miles. Seems like a lot, right? You might be hitting this goal already, in which case, aim for 11, 000 steps. Lucky for us we live in the most walkable city on earth. Strap on those fit flops and get walking. (insert link: http://www.amazon.com/Omron-HJ-112-Digital-Pocket-Pedometer/dp/B0000U1OCI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=hpc&qid=1247019207&sr=8-1)
2. Use the stairs: I never understand why people don’t walk up the escalators when in the subway. If you have an injury, debilitation, or heavy suitcase, you have an excuse. The rest of you: start climbing! And the people that take the elevator one floor…down? Again, start stepping. Even if you start out with just one floor, something is better than nothing.
3. Work out at home: I know what you’re going to say: “I don’t have enough room in my apartment.” Or, “When I get home the last thing I want to do is work out.” Fair enough. Try this: during commercial breaks try different exercises. Triceps dips off of your coffee table during one break, pushups during the second, and crunches during the third. Repeat and you’ve watched one hour of television AND worked out for 30 minutes. Hooray for multi-tasking!
4. Schedule gym time: Exercise is just as important as a business meeting or happy hour. Treat your gym time as an appointment and literally schedule it in your planner. Think of it as much needed alone time, where you can catch up on the latest podcast or listen to Totally 80s.
5. Get a buddy: I’m all about accountability partners. Why not find a friend that is in the same predicament as you (which is probably 90% of your friends) and schedule time to be active together. Go for a walk, take a spin class, or play Wii fit for some healthy interactive competition. Whatever it is, no more excuses, just move!
Amanda is currently studying at NYU for her Masters in Nutrition & Dietetics, and is a Certified Holistic Health Counselor with a degree from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition in New York City. She is committed to inspiring people to live their best, most fulfilling lives possible, incorporating mainstream, holistic, and integrative approaches to health and wellness. Check out her blog.