Fitness Tips: May 12, 2014

Our bodies are replacing billions of cells every day and using the foods we consume as the source of building materials. Eat well, be happy, and continue to visit us often.

Healthy Lifestyle Tip: Eat Healthy to Feel Better
Eat foods that regulate blood sugar levels and lift your spirits. Research has shown that certain foods have the ability to boost your mood.

Fit in Fiber
To keep a stable mood, maintain your blood sugar levels. To do this you should eat foods that are slow to digest. Foods that are high in fiber such as beans, oats, brown rice, apples, and other fruits and vegetables are good choices.

Mix in Protein
Like fiber, protein can help you avoid blood sugar crashes. Some good sources of protein are chicken, fish, eggs, seeds and nuts, low-fat yogurt, low-fat cheese and milk, tofu, and peanut butter. Combining protein and carbohydrates will help slow digestion and help you maintain a healthy blood sugar level.

Skip the Sugars
Avoid concentrated sources of simple sugars such as soft drinks, fruit juices, jellies and jams, syrups, and candy bars. These concentrated sources can cause radical spikes and subsequent drops in your blood sugar levels. The swings in blood sugar can leave you feeling tired and irritable.

Go for Fatty Acids
Omega-3s, the essential fatty acids found in walnuts, flaxseed, and coldwater fish, such as salmon, are known for their ability to boost heart health because they're mild blood thinners.

"B" Happy
The B vitamins, including B6, B12, and folic acid, play a role in the production of brain chemicals that regulate your mood. Good food sources for many B vitamins include poultry, eggs, low-fat yogurt, and fortified breakfast cereals. Folic acid in particular, is found mostly in leafy greens.

One "D" You Want
Vitamin D helps your brain produce mood-boosting chemicals. The best food sources of vitamin D are fortified dairy products – be sure to choose no-fat or low-fat milk, cheese, and yogurt. Sunlight is also a good source of vitamin D, but limit your exposure to the sun to avoid skin cancer.

Don't Skip Meals
Ideally, you should eat something healthy every four to five hours to keep your blood sugar stable. Healthy snack choices include a handful of almonds, carrot and celery sticks, or ready-to-eat whole grain cereals.

Eat Well, Be Happy
There's no question that what you eat affects how you feel, and a healthy diet helps you feel better. The healthiest diet is one that emphasizes whole grains, fresh fruits, and vegetables and that includes lean protein and low-fat or no-fat dairy products. Combine a healthy diet with regular exercise, and you will find it helps your mood as well as your body.