Tag Archives: muscle contraction

Is sitting increasing your heart risk?

A sedentary lifestyle may increase the risk of diseases like diabetes and heart problems. It is really important to do some moderate to intense physical activity everyday. Physical workout in the form of exercise is very beneficial for all ages. It releases good hormones and helps to reduce stress, which is also responsible for lifestyle diseases like diabetes, heart problems and obesity.

According to the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heart failure affects over 5 million people in the US, where it contributes to around 1 in 9 deaths and costs the nation an estimated $32 billion a year.

According to new research published in the American Heart Association journal Circulation: Heart Failure says –“Sitting for long periods increases heart failure risk in men, even for those who exercise regularly”

The question that arises is that how does sitting increase the risk for heart failure. The reason given by Prof. Sara Rosenkranz is that when we sit for a long time, the muscle contraction activity lowers, due to which a molecule called lipoprotein lipase or LPL, shuts down. LPL converts fat into energy, for use by the body. She also explains that “We’re basically telling our bodies to shut down the processes that help to stimulate metabolism throughout the day and that is not good. Just by breaking up your sedentary time, we can actually regulate that process in the body.”

One way to avoid prolonged sitting during the workday is to switch to a standing desk. An easier, no-cost solution is to set your smartphone timer to go off every 30 to 60 minutes during the day. When the alarm rings, “Stretch and move around the office to avoid any prolonged sitting,” Dr. Manson recommends.

So, along with exercise, it is really important to also spend some time standing. Also, when we are sitting, we tend to eat more unnecessarily and even binge. Make it a point, whether you are at the workplace or at home, to spare some time in between to get up and walk around or at least do some light stretches.

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo
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7 Essential Nutrient Checklist

Some nutrients are important for healthy living and play a important role in daily body metabolism. We eat nutritious food most of the time, but are you meeting your daily requirement? Most of the health problems are due to the imbalance of the nutrients.

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— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo

Magnesium For Health: Are You Getting Enough?

Ever wondered why does your muscle ache, or becomes numb? You might not be meeting the required RDA (Recommended Dietary Allowance) for very vital mineral “magnesium.’’ It is an essential mineral for overall good health, helps maintain normal muscle, nerve function, steady heart rhythm, healthy immune system, and also keeps bones strong. It also helps in regulating blood sugar levels.

Photo- Popcorn at the movies

Early signs of magnesium deficiency may include loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, fatigue, and weakness. As magnesium deficiency worsens, numbness, tingling, muscle contractions and cramps, seizures, abnormal heart rhythms, and coronary spasms can occur. Severe magnesium deficiency can also result in low levels of calcium in the blood.

The RDA for magnesium is 350 milligrams per day and its rich sources are green vegetables like spinach, legumes, beans, peas, 1 cup almonds, seeds, cashews, legumes, peanuts, walnuts, oats, figs etc.

The best sources of this mineral is in cocoa powder, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, all bran and mixed nuts. You could also get your daily magnesium supply from brown rice, soy beans, shredded wheat and plain popcorn.

Selected food sources of magnesium are listed below:

FOOD Milligrams (mg) %DV*
Halibut, cooked, 3 ounces 90 20
Almonds, dry roasted, 1 ounce 80 20
Cashews, dry roasted, 1 ounce 75 20
Soybeans, mature, cooked, ½ cup 75 20
Spinach, frozen, cooked, ½ cup 75 20
Nuts, mixed, dry roasted, 1 ounce 65 15
Cereal, shredded wheat, 2 rectangular biscuits 55 15
Oatmeal, instant, fortified, prepared w/ water, 1 cup 55 15
Potato, baked w/ skin, 1 medium 50 15
Peanuts, dry roasted, 1 ounce 50 15
Peanut butter, smooth, 2 Tablespoons 50 15
Wheat Bran, crude, 2 Tablespoons 45 10
Black-eyed Peas, cooked, ½ cup 45 10
Yogurt, plain, skim milk, 8 fluid ounces 45 10
Bran Flakes, ½ cup 40 10
Vegetarian Baked Beans, ½ cup 40 10
Rice, brown, long-grained, cooked, ½ cup 40 10
Lentils, mature seeds, cooked, ½ cup 35 8
Avocado, California, ½ cup pureed 35 8
Kidney Beans, canned, ½ cup 35 8
Pinto Beans, cooked, ½ cup 35 8
Wheat Germ, crude, 2 Tablespoons 35 8
Chocolate milk, 1 cup 33 8
Banana, raw, 1 medium 30 8
Milk Chocolate candy bar, 1.5 ounce bar 28 8
Milk, reduced fat (2%) or fat free, 1 cup 27 8
Bread, whole wheat, commercially prepared, 1 slice 25 6
Raisins, seedless, ½ cup packed 25 6
Whole Milk, 1 cup 24 6
Chocolate Pudding, 4 ounce ready-to-eat portion 24 6
*DV = Daily Value. DVs are reference numbers developed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to help consumers determine if a food contains a lot or a little of a specific nutrient. The DV for magnesium is 400 milligrams (mg).
Approximately 50% of total body magnesium is found in bones. The other half is found predominantly inside cells of body tissues and organs. Only 1% of magnesium is found in blood, but the body works very hard to keep blood levels for magnesium constant. It is  a very essential mineral for carrying out various bodily process and maintaining an overall health but one must also not forget that excess of a it can show reverse ill effects. Likewise, an overdose of Magnesium has been correlated with diarrhea and abdominal cramping and in severe overdose it can also cause kidney failure. Remember moderation is the keyword to good health.
— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo