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Eat moderate portions. If you keep portion sizes reasonable, it's easier to eat the foods you want and stay healthy. Did you know the recommended serving of cooked meat is 3 ounces, similar in size to a deck of playing cards


Put Down That Menu! Eating out at restaurants may be as terrible for your body as dining on fast food. If you’re one of the many people who frequent restaurants, but avoid fast food for the sake of good health, you’re in for an unpleasant surprise. 

A recent study, published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, discovered that “eating at a restaurant is comparable to -- or in some cases less healthy than -- eating at a fast-food outlet. While people who eat at restaurants tend to take in more healthy nutrients… than those who eat at home or at a fast-food outlet, the restaurant diners also consume substantially more sodium and cholesterol -- two nutrients that Americans generally eat in excess, even at home”.1

Another concerning factor is sodium intake, since the recommended daily allowance is 1,500 – 2,300 milligrams. In this study, they found that eating fast food increases sodium intake by roughly 300 milligrams, and eating at a restaurant boosts your sodium intake by 412 milligrams.1 Consuming too much sodium is bad for your health, so perhaps it’s time to rethink the commonly held belief that dining at restaurants is healthier than eating at fast food outlets.

In conclusion, eating at a restaurant isn’t always healthier than eating fast food. This means that we need to pay careful attention to what we order, as well as the portion size when dining at restaurants. If your aim is to be as healthy as possible, than it’s best to prepare your own food and cook at home. Create your own, healthier versions of your favorite restaurant meals. Let’s cook up some healthy, delicious and nutritious meals today!

1University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. "Restaurant meals can be as bad for your waistline as fast food is." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 July 2015.

on 7/17/15

Walking is for everyone — making it a great exercise for all ages. Adding in a few extra steps each day is simple — take the stairs at work or by park further from the entrance of stores, restaurants and your place of work.

Alternatively, take advantage of the sunny weather! Go to a park with gorgeous greenery and take a long, peaceful walk. If you prefer the concrete jungle, take a walk down your street or downtown and make exercise enjoyable.

Plug in this playlist and walk yourself fit!

1.       “Cool for the Summer” – Demi Lovato
2.       “Fun” – Pitbull, Chris Brown
3.       “Cheerleader” – OMI
4.       “Firework” – Katy Perry
5.       “Honey, I’m Good” – Andy Grammer
6.       “Can’t Feel My Face” – The Weeknd
7.       “Sparks” – Hilary Duff
8.       “Freedom” – Allen Stone
9.       “Lean On” – Major Lazer, MO, DJ Snake
10.   “Hey Mama” – David Guetta, Nicki Minaj, Bebe Rexha

on 7/15/15

by Deedra Mason, Director of Clinical Education & Research

Many of us are under the impression that our gut and its flora are in poor health due to being overweight, however it could be the other way round. Perhaps you’re overweight because your gut and its flora are unbalanced.

Healthy gut flora can greatly assist with “whittling that waist”. Studies aren’t yet clear on which particular species are important, but one thing is certain — slender people and obese people have different gut flora. The literature in these studies also supports the use of probiotics for maintaining a healthy weight. 

The researchers reported that, “even though diet will affect gut flora composition, most studies conclude that gut flora on its own has an effect on weight. Alteration of the gut microbiota can be an important part of a weight loss program.”

The best solution to reducing your gut flora woes is the use of probiotics, which may assist the gut in gaining energy from polysaccharides (sugar-based carbohydrates). This helps the body with its insulin sensitivity, as well as how the body handles inflammation and energy use. Several mechanisms are thought to influence how gut flora regulates weight. Inflammation, energy from polysaccharides, insulin sensitivity and energy expenditure and storage are all affected by gut flora.

In conclusion, while a healthy diet improves overall well-being; having a poor gut flora balance may lead to sugar cravings and food cravings, thus playing a significant role in our food choices.

Interesting Side Note: In another study, researches at Harvard found that children born via C-section were twice as likely to be overweight, because they did not have the benefits or the exposure to the flora through the birth canal.

Obesity alters gut microbial ecology.Ley, et al. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2005 Aug 2; 102(31):11070-11075
Vael C, Verhulst SL, Nelen V, et al. Intestinal microflora and body mass index during the first three years of life: an observational study. Gut Pathog. 2011 May 23;3(1):8.
Kalliomaki M., Collado M.C, Salminen S., et al. Early differences in fecal microbiota composition in children may predict overweight


on 7/13/15

By Leo Gil

Do you want to cleanse your body, help boost your immune system and aid your digestive system[1]? Try this flavorful Ginger-Lemon Drink!

For the best results, drink it first thing every morning to kick start your day.

·   1 cup warm water
·   Juice of 1 lemon
·   1 teaspoon organic honey
·   ½ inch fresh ginger root

Mix together and enjoy!

on 7/9/15

by Theresa Greenwell, International Science
Many people struggle to keep their blood sugar levels within healthy limits, especially those with type 2 diabetes. In order to keep their blood sugar at a manageable level, these individuals often have to avoid certain foods which can be exceptionally challenging.
Due to the fact that obesity and type 2 diabetes is on the rise, researchers regularly look for ways to reduce overall risk levels. This research includes looking at medication, exercise and different ways of eating. As eating habits are often the easiest to manipulate (in theory), this is where many researchers concentrate their energies.
A recent study published in Diabetes Care (July 2015) looked at how the order in which diabetic (type 2) individuals ate certain types of nutrients influenced postprandial blood sugar and insulin levels. During the study, participants were asked to eat a specific meal, on 2 different days, in 2 different ways. On the first day, participants were instructed to eat the carbohydrates first, wait 15 minutes, and then eat the rest of the meal consisting of a protein and vegetables (with fat).  One the second day, the participants ate the protein and vegetables (with fat) first, waited 15 minutes and then ate the carbohydrates.  Before and after eating the meals blood sugar and insulin levels were analyzed.
Results of the blood sugar and insulin tests showed that the order in which the participants ate had a significant impact. When the protein and vegetables were eaten prior to the carbohydrates, blood sugar levels were significant lower at 30, 60 and 120 minutes after the meal. Insulin levels were also significantly reduced. 
Though this study was done on a small scale, with only 11 participants, it may have a significant impact in the long run. It would be easier for both clinicians and patients to concentrate on the order in which a meal is eaten, rather than focus on avoiding certain foods altogether. More research in this area will need to be done, but for those struggling to retain healthy blood sugar levels the results of this study are very encouraging.


Shukla, A., et al.  Food order has a significant impact on postprandial glucose and insulin levels. Diabetes Care. 38: 98-99, 2015.

on 7/8/15