Post-Workout Recovery for Muscle Growth [Visual]

It’s true that lifting weights – especially heavy weights – helps you grow muscles, but there are other things you can do as part of your post-workout recovery to increase your muscle growth.

Growing muscles isn’t just about how hard you work in the gym, but what you do for recovery in the hours, days, and months post-workout. Next time you hit the gym hard, think about how you can get the most out of your workout by taking care of your body afterwards.

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Eating for Hormone Balance: How to make it Work

Your physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing depend heavily on the complex sets of hormones within your body. Acting as chemical messengers, hormones regulate numerous bodily processes and functions – including appetite, mood, and sleep, among numerous others.

In order for everything to function smoothly and for you to feel your best, your hormones need to be properly balanced, and this is where nutrition plays a vital role. Here’s what you need to pay attention to in your diet so you can improve and maintain your hormonal health.

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Food Deserts in America [Infographic]

Food deserts have been a big topic in the United States lately, and for good reason: 23.5 million Americans, about 2% of all households, live in food deserts. These food deserts are defined as areas where it is impossible to find adequate fresh, whole, and healthy foods, particularly fruits and vegetables.

Most food desert areas are impoverished, and many residents of these areas do not have a car to travel to stores that carry healthy options. Not even large cities are exempt from food deserts—according to a 2009 survey, 750,000 New York residents lived in areas without adequate access to healthy food, and in 2006, 500,000 Chicago residents reported the same.

Obviously, having poor access to healthy food has health ramifications. Many people with dietary restrictions like gluten allergies or lactose intolerance have an even harder time getting proper nutrition. It is estimated that healthy eating could save $71 billion in chronic healthcare costs by lowering rates of certain diseases. In neighborhoods with access to healthy food, a 45% decrease in diabetes cases over the course of five years was noted. Obesity was also lower in these areas.

Health costs aside, there are other negative ramifications of living in a food desert. Healthy food is more expensive at smaller stores, and many people don’t have time to venture out to larger stores, even if they do have transportation. Since many people who live in these areas live in poverty, they often have no choice but to eat fast food.

The good news is that there are many different initiatives working toward fewer food deserts in the United States, including school lunch programs and bringing grocery stores to impoverished areas. Learn more from this Tulane University infographic from their School of Social Work.

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Realistic Tips to Drink More Water [Visual]

Water is arguably one of the most important items we can—and need to—add to our diet. In fact, we should think of it as a nutrient, just like we do with the vitamins and minerals we get from fruits and veggies.

There are well known—and surprising—health benefits to drinking water. Here are some tips to drink more water no matter how busy you are.

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Daily Intakes [Infographic]

Recently I read this article where it reads that –based on an updated advice by the American Heart Association– coconut oil is packed with saturated fat which can raise “bad” cholesterol and “is as unhealthy as beef dripping and butter”, say US heart experts.

This made me think it could be useful to have a very basic-quick chart with the recommended daily intakes like fats, salt, sugar and carbs.

Feel free to share it 🙂

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