Your mom was on to something. Research shows that when people eat more slowly, they consume fewer calories. And it's not just because they run out of time!
Complex biochemical changes occur in our bodies while we eat, sending messages to our brain about everything from taste to satiety. Hunger hormones tell us that if it tastes good, we should grab some more! But as our stomach fills up, other hormones start sending messages to our brain to let us know we're getting full...and that process also triggers "happy hormones", neurotransmitters associated with pleasure. We feel satisfied!
But this process takes time, with some experts estimating up to 20 minutes before hormones interactions produce the full=happy feeling that signals us to stop eating. Up until that point, we may not realize we've had enough.
Chewing slowly, chewing well, and savoring your meal can help you to eat less AND feel more satisfied when you're done!
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What are your fitness goals? To lose weight? To lower your blood pressure? To get "toned"?
Women work out for an endless list of reasons! But whatever their goals are, strength training is an essential component to their success.
Many women avoid picking up heavy weights for fear of becoming "bulky" or "big." Or perhaps they simply don't think there's any benefit for them. Their reasons for avoiding weights can be as numerous as their reasons for exercising in the first place. But to get the most out of their exercise routine, here are a few things they might need to know:
1. When your muscles work against resistance, they demand a lot of energy...both during and after! And the more muscle you have, the more energy they use. That means more calorie burn. Building muscle will enhance the effectiveness of every other type of exercise you do!
2. You won't get "huge." Bodybuilders have less body fat than you. That's what makes their muscles so visible. Lifting weights won't make you look like a bodybuilder, but a strong foundation can make you look and feel more firm and trim.
3. Strength training not only builds more muscle, it also builds bone density and stabilizes joints, thereby helping to prevent injury during exercise and daily life activities. This becomes even more important with age. The older we get, the more muscle we lose. We can combat the effects of aging by keeping our muscles challenged!
4. Strength training helps to balance your hormones...you know, the ones that cause women to struggle with excess fat around our waist, hips and thighs? That's right, challenging your muscles at least 2-3x a week helps combat the effect that stress and aging has on our hormones. But you'll have to pick up something heavier than your purse (for some of us, that may be more than we think!)