weight loss

National Hottie Month! (Teas and Their Benefits)

Tea bag in glass tea cup with glass saucer

You heard us. January is National hot tea month!

For ages, teas have been used and looked at as a staple for healthy beverages and pure delight. From bottled green tea energizing our yoga enthusiasts, Arizona Teas becoming all the rage, and who could forget good-old sweet iced tea from south of the Mason-Dixon.

In honor of hot tea month, we did a little digging and found the basic myths and highlights about teas. Hopefully, this can keep reminding us that just because it says “tea”, doesn’t mean it’s the healthiest option on the menu.

First the basics:

“Tea is a name given to a lot of brews, but purists consider only green tea, black tea, white tea, oolong tea, and pu-erh tea the real thing. They are all derived from the Camellia sinensis plant, a shrub native to China and India, and contain unique antioxidants called flavonoids. The most potent of these, known as ECGC, may help against free radicals that can contribute to cancer, heart disease, and clogged arteries.

All these teas also have caffeine and theanine, which affect the brain and seem to heighten mental alertness.” (We found that gem of a description from WebMD)

Three steps on how to keep your tea simple and healthy:

What kind of tea did you choose? If you stop by your local café and order a Passion, Refresh or Vanilla Rooibos, you’re ordering an herbal tea. They are going to taste great because of they’re a fusion of plants, fruits, and flowers, but are not derived from the Camellia plant. This means that the antioxidants unique to tea are usually missing. Ask your barista what kind of tea your usual is. Ask them which tea would be most related if it is herbal or another fusion.

What are you adding to your tea? Sweet tea has a pretty strong hold on the southern states of the U.S. Filled with sugar (the more the better) iced sweet tea, can boost your daily calorie intake by up to 300 calories! (Per serving). Talk about drinking your calories. Other teas to look out for are stationed at your convenience store, bottled or canned. Remember to take a look at the label to see what the “tea” you’re buying is really made of. Watch out for preservatives, added sugars, and artificial sweeteners. Obviously, drinking that would be counterproductive if you’re drinking tea to get a jump start on your health consciousness.

**Do you add sweetener to the tea yourself? Try using natural enhancers like Agave or Honey! Any Tea-Bar should be equipped with a supply, and it gives your tea a holistic essence. Way better than dissolving a few packs of sugar, if you ask us.

What do you want your tea to do for you? Many have sought after green tea as a metabolism booster or black tea for a caffeine kick. Read this blog we found, 6 , to learn more about your favorites and to find new teas that could benefit your goals.

Three tea bags with classic background

So, tell us! What are your favorite teas? Have you made a switch from coffee to tea; what has your experience been? Leave your ideas in our comments section!

Advertisements

Adding Tea to Your Diet: a Simple Way to Boost Your Health Today!

Did you know swapping you daily coffee for tea could be beneficial for your body!?And while there are many teas with tasty flavors including fruits and mint, these teas may not have any benefits other than their taste. Stick to green, black, oolong, or white teas. These tea types are chock full of antioxidants and phytochemicals.  Research shows that polyphenols and phytochemicals are what give tea its health benefits.

Here are a few ways that tea could improve your health:

• The antioxidants in teas have been shown to protect people from a range of cancers, including breast, colon, prostate and skin.
• Tea helps hydrate the body, despite the caffeine it contains.
• Consumption of hot tea regularly has been shown to cinch waist circumference and BMI, decrease your risk of heart attack and lower the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease.

Take tea’s health boosting powers to the next level! Brew up a cup of green tea.

• The catechins (another kind of antioxidant) in green tea extract can increase your body’s ability to burn fat, thereby increasing muscle endurance.
• Studies have shown green tea can help people with diabetes process sugar better.
• Evidence also shows that green tea can improve bone mineral density and strength.
• The polyphenols in green tea may help maintain the parts of the brain that regulate learning and memory, and as a result help prevent and treat degenerative neurological diseases.
• Green tea may even help protect you from ultraviolet rays.

Of course drinking tea isn’t the only thing you should be doing to improve your health, a healthy diet and moderate exercise are vital to good health! Try implementing a cup of tea a day to get some of the awesome benefits tea can give you! For more ways to stay healthy, check out our Pinterest at http://pinterest.com/massageenvycf/!

Health Benefits of Running

Getting your body to a healthy state might seem impossible to some- but in reality, it’s as easy as running! Running has many health benefits, and it’s easy to do. Here are just a few examples of what running can do for you:

Weight Loss: Running burns a lot of calories, and is an excellent form of exercise. Burning all these extra calories will aid in weight loss.

Cardiovascular Health: With regular running, you can drastically increase your cardiovascular health. Running helps increase the elasticity of your arteries and lower your blood pressure.

Bone Density: Running will help increase the strength of your bones, and your muscles. This can reduce your risk of osteoporosis.

Appetite: Because you are burning more calories when you run, you will eat more and have a healthier appetite. Running regularly will also help your digestion.

Diabetes: Studies show that if you run 5 days a week for a half hour, your risk of diabetes is reduced.

Cancer: Running this amount can also help reduce your risk of certain types of cancer, including uterine, breast, and bowel cancer.

Energy: Running regularly can also help improve your energy.  If you constantly feel tired no matter how much sleep you get, running can help by getting your blood pumping and waking you up.

Tips to Staying Healthy

National Nutrition month is coming to an end, but don’t let your healthy ways stop there. If you participated in National Nutrition month, keep it up! If not, it’s never too late to start. Here are a few tips to help you stay on track or to help you jumpstart your healthy routine.

Drink plenty of water or other calorie-free beverages. Sometimes our brains can confuse hunger for thirst. Next time you feel a craving coming on, drink an ice cold glass of water first to curb your appetite, rather than filling up on unnecessary calories. Also, water is a natural detox helping to flush out toxins and keeping bowel movements regular.

Enjoy your favorite foods, in moderation of course. Often times completely cutting out our favorite guilty pleasures will only cause us to binge on them later, ruining all the healthy eating you’ve been doing.  Instead do not completely deny yourself a chocolate chip cookie or that slice of pizza. As long as you’re doing it in moderation you can still enjoy your favorite snacks.

Eat several mini-meals a day. Studies show that people who eat 4-5 smaller meals throughout the day have more success shedding extra pounds. Grazing throughout your day will help to keep your metabolism humming and will actually help to burn more calories and also curb cravings.

Include fiber in your diet. Fiber has many benefits such as aiding digestion, preventing constipation and lowering cholesterol –and also helping with weight loss. Women should make sure to get 25 grams daily, while men need about 38 grams. Oatmeal, whole grains, beans, fruits and veggies are all rich in fiber.

Get enough sleep. When your body is sleep deprived it overproduces the appetite stimulation hormone ghrelin and under-produces leptin, the hormone that lets our brain know we are full. Getting enough sleep will not only keep you from doing unnecessary snacking, you will feel more well rested making you more inclined to exercise.

Limit alcohol to weekends. Alcohol contains empty calories, which our bodies to not use very well and often get converted directly into fat. A five-ounce glass of wine contains about 125 calories and a bottle of beer has about 153 calories. To help to limit your intake of alcohol, try just allowing yourself to indulge in a glass or two of your favorite alcoholic beverage on weekends only. Red wine even has heart healthy benefits!

Reduced Stress = Reduced Weight

A recent study has found another reason why regular massages are a good idea: weight loss. According to the study, reduced stress levels may also reduce one’s waistline.

A new Kaiser Permanente study found that those trying to lose 10 pounds or more were actually more likely to reach that goal if they had lower stress levels and slept on average 6-8 hours a night.

A number of other studies have shown many massage therapy benefits including: increased relaxation, reduced pain and stress, and improved sleep patterns.

According to Charles Elder, an investigator with the Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research in Portland, Oregon, “This study suggests that when people are trying to lose weight, they should try to get the right amount of sleep and reduce their stress.”

So how can a routine massage help? Massage therapy helps decrease the production of the stress hormone cortisol. It can also lower heart rate and blood pressure. Massages help to get rid of muscle tension, ease depression and boost the immune system.

Besides all the ways massage can help ease the physical symptoms of stress, it can also give you some quiet time to relax. Massages are given in relaxing environments and can easily help you to forgot your stresses, and in turn lead to weight loss.

For more information or to book an appointment visit our Web site at http://www.massageenvy.com

Massage therapy tied to weight loss?

New research has shown that enjoying a massage every once in a while may help you on your path to diet and weight loss. Too good to be true? Believe it or not, this is true–and we’ll explain how.

First of all, massages release endorphins in your body. Endorphins are the “feel good” chemicals you get from certain foods and activities. Well, these chemicals have an indirect effect on your body’s metabolism– by making you feel good, it can often block the hunger signals from your brain, therefore helping you with your weight loss goals. Less stress lessens the body’s ability to store fat. Massage can also increase circulation and blood flow therefore helping you burn fat faster with a higher metabolic rate.

So there you go– another excuse to schedule that massage you’ve been dying to get!