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Don’t let back pain keep you down! Here are six exercises that will keep your spine healthy and your core strong. This five-minute workout will teach you the essentials for maintaining a better back, from flexible hips to strong abs. Press play, get ready to stretch and strengthen your back, and feel relief. More from C9 by Champion.

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Despite what popular diets say, carbs are not the enemy. But if you’re on a weight-loss mission, a diet that’s heavy in calorie-dense carbs is not going to support these goals. Luckily, many experts agree: you can have your carbs – and eat them, too! – just make sure it’s for breakfast.

Source: POPSUGAR Photography

Biggest Loser trainer Bob Harper tells his clients on the ranch to “front load their carbohydrates.” Many people ask Bob if they should be cutting carbs entirely, but he completely disagrees, since “your body needs carbs for fuel.” When you eat carbs earlier in the day, however, “you’ll know you’ll have time to burn them off” with exercise.

Celebrity trainer Gunnar Peterson also recommends that his clients skip carbs later in the day – especially if they’re getting ready for an important event! Foods like rice, grains, pastas, oatmeal, and potatoes make your body retain water, “which blurs, to a certain degree, definition and muscle separation,” he says.

Manhattan-based nutritionist and registered dietitian Shira Lenchewski explains the science backs up these celebrity trainer claims. Our bodies’ circadian rhythm, or “internal time-keeping system,” plays a huge role in “metabolic and hormonal changes over 24-hour cycles.” Carbohydrate metabolism fluctuates around the circadian cycle, meaning that “[carbs] are burned more efficiently in the morning than at night.” For clients trying to lose weight, she recommends that the largest meal (higher in carbohydrates) is breakfast; the rest of your meals should be “trending smaller as the day goes on.”

Not sure what constitutes a healthy carb-laden breakfast? Keep reading for some of our favorite recipes.

Apple-Quinoa Bake: 44.3 grams

Photo: Jenny Sugar

Whip up this gluten-free quinoa bake featuring soft, cinnamon-spiced apples; plump raisins; and crunchy almonds. Bake a batch ahead of time, so you can enjoy this healthy breakfast all week long.

Superfood Pancakes: 58.6 grams

Photo: Jenny Sugar

Inject some greens into your favorite breakfast! These spinach, banana, and blueberry superfood pancakes might have an earthy hue, but don’t fret – they do not taste too “green.” Even better, they’re full of fiber, calcium, iron, vitamin A, vitamin K, and folate.

Harley Pasternak’s Breakfast Smoothie: 71.9 grams

Photo: Michele Foley

It’s not just about the bread – smoothies can be a healthy source of carbs from all that fresh fruit. Celebrity trainer Harley Pasternak recommends this apple smoothie made with just a few ingredients to many of his clients. This recipe packs major nutrients and vitamins to get your day off to a good start.

Front page image source: POPSUGAR Photography

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Crisco was originally developed using hydrogenated vegetable oil. Research has now confirmed that these synthetic hydrogenated fats (also known as trans fats) are bad for our health and have linked their regular consumption with a variety of …
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The World’s Healthiest Foods

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Our latest POPSUGAR Must Have Special Edition box is here! Get ready for the second annual Special Edition Must Have Fall Style box. We can’t wait to share our editors’ chic essentials in fashion and beauty for Fall – the season of style!

Last year’s Special Edition Fall Style box featured brands you love, like Stila and Cynthia Vincent, and we can’t wait to surprise you with what’s in store this year.

We have a limited quantity, so hurry on this Special Edition and order now!

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Our latest POPSUGAR Must Have Special Edition box is here! Get ready for the second annual Special Edition Must Have Fall Style box. We can’t wait to share our editors’ chic essentials in fashion and beauty for Fall – the season of style!

Last year’s Special Edition Fall Style box featured brands you love, like Stila and Cynthia Vincent, and we can’t wait to surprise you with what’s in store this year.

We have a limited quantity, so hurry on this Special Edition and order now!

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Get wise to how willpower works, so you’ll know how to use it, why it can go off the rails, and how to get it back on track. Learn more at WebMD.


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Food allergy and food intolerance could have some symptoms in common; however, these are two different conditions. While the former involves the immune system, the latter doesn’t. This Buzzle write-up lists the differences between food allergy and food intolerance.
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Buzzle: Health & Fitness

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Despite what you might think, pull-ups are not impossible and can be adjusted for any fitness level. This infamous exercise offers a great upper-body workout that quickly tones the back, arms, and chest. Not only will it make you stronger, but conquering this move will also give an extra boost of confidence and help you feel like you can tackle anything - because let’s face it, you can!

Beginner Pull-Ups

  • Assisted Pull-Up Machine: The pull-up machine is a great way to try your first go at pull-ups. The machine uses counterbalance weights, which means the higher the weight you set the machine, the easier the exercise becomes. Start by setting the weight to 20 pounds less than your weight, complete three to five reps, and then adjust the weight accordingly. Here are step-by-step instructions on how to use the assisted pull-up machine at your gym.
  • Band Pull-Up: With the help of a superband – a giant, two-inch-thick rubber band – you can tackle consecutive pull-ups. All you have to do is wrap the rubber band securely around the pull-up bar, put it under one knee (or one foot for even more assistance), grab onto the bar (stepping off a stool if needed to reach), and begin your pull-up. Superbands are the same length, but the wider the band, the more assistance. Eventually, you will no longer be a “groupie” to the band and will be able to use your body weight!

Intermediate Pull-Ups

  • Jump Pull-Ups: Consider jump pull-ups (pull-ups with a jump start) the next level after the assisted pull-up machine. Standing under the bar, jump up to grab the bar, harnessing the momentum of the jump to pull your body and chin to the bar. If your chin doesn’t come close to the bar, don’t give up – this move often takes practice.

Advanced Pull-Ups

  • Traditional Body Weight Pull-Ups: Using your body weight is the most traditional, but often the most challenging, way to complete a pull-up. With palms facing away from you, grip a pull-up bar with arms extended. Keeping your core tight while engaging your back and lats, bring yourself up until your chin passes above the bar, then lower yourself down into the starting position. The trick (and challenge) to any pull-up is to avoid swinging your entire body or using your neck for added momentum.
  • Weighted Pull-Up: When you’re ready, let your inner Gabby Douglas shine. Following the movements for a traditional pull-up, add a weighted plate for an extra challenge. Using a weight belt or simply holding a weight between your knees, you will be the star of the gym and any workout.

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Whether you go out for an afternoon of strawberry pickin’ or buy a pint at the local farmers market, nothing feels more like Summer than the taste of fresh strawberries. And how do you make juicy, sweet strawberries even better? Pair them with chocolate, of course.

Would you believe these strawberries are filled with velvety chocolate mousse that’s vegan? Aside from cutting back on calories and saturated fat, they’re also made with good-for-you ingredients like silken tofu and chickpeas.

Better yet - a five-piece serving is only 87 calories. Much better than a real chocolate-dipped strawberry, which is about 40 calories per strawberry! This vegan and gluten-free recipe is a much healthier way to satisfy your chocolate strawberry cravings while saving on calories, carbs, and fat.

Chocolate-Mousse-Filled Strawberries

Ingredients

1/2 container silken tofu (1/2 pound)

1/4 cup chickpeas, rinsed and drained


5 pitted dates


1/8 cup cocoa powder


1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


40 large strawberries, washed and dried


1/4 bar dark chocolate, chopped

Directions

  1. Add all the ingredients except the strawberries and dark chocolate to a food processor. Puree until completely smooth, for several minutes.
  2. Place mousse in the fridge for at least 60 minutes. If you’re making this recipe ahead of time, it’s OK to leave the mousse in the fridge overnight.
  3. Using a knife or strawberry huller, carve out the middle of each strawberry.
  4. Spoon a small amount of the mousse into each strawberry. Place in a shallow rectangular dish. Top with a sprinkling of chopped dark chocolate and enjoy immediately, or keep in the fridge until ready to serve (up to a day).

Here’s the nutritional information for one five-strawberry serving:

Source: Calorie Count


Nutrition

Calories per serving
87

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Quick cooking steel cut oats are cut into much smaller pieces than regular steel cut oats, which allows them to cook faster, so nutritionally they are equivalent to one …
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The World’s Healthiest Foods