3-Apple-A-Day Plan

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

3-Apples-a-Day Plan The plan is simple. Eat an apple before every meal and you will magically lose weight. When I first heard about the plan a couple of years ago, my first instinct was to wonder when the apple farmers of America had united and pitched in enough money to advertise this idea. My instincts weren’t far from the mark. The 3-Apple-A-Day Plan is sponsored by Get Fit Foods, whose major backer is the Washington Apple Growers Association (among others).

Eat more apples. It will make you healthy… really it will. I’m not just saying that because I have an apple orchard or anything…

If you aren’t eating any fruits and vegetables, then adding an apple before each meal gets a few extra nutrients into your body and provides you with a sense of fullness. More importantly, eating lots of fruits and vegetables is the best option, rather than sticking to one fruit. After a week of three apples a day, I’d be mighty sick of apples. It might actually make me eat LESS apples in the long run.

Watch out. Even the seemingly healthy ideas are backed by people trying to take your money. Choose a diet that is balanced and that you can live with. Adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet is a good option, but any plan that tries to convince you that one certain food is THE answer is just trying to take your money.

Same goes for you dairy folk… 3-a-Day

… and don’t even get me started talking about cabbage soup.


Health Monitoring RFIDs

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Sony is testing a health monitoring system that uses RFIDs to automatically record the nutritional information that employees eat in the company cafeteria. It makes me wonder what working at Sony is like. What is it like when your employer watches what you eat and makes recommendations to live a healthier life?

Popgadget – RFID’d employee health control – by Regine

There was an old country song called, “I Sold My Soul to the Company Store.” Now, I think it would go, “I’m Hungry, but the Company Cafeteria Thinks I’m Fat.” Despite my reservations about my employer knowing about my binges, I think anything that makes it easier to monitor my own health is a great idea.

Just think of how easy it could be. I could just hold up my food to my RFID tag and it would keep a log of everything I eat. No more writing in my Palm, no more lists to look up the food. All I would have to do is just live my life and be able to check the data.

It’s so exciting to live in this time. I can’t wait to see what this will look like when it’s available on the market.


Mission Possible

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Mission Possible: A Therapist's Guide to Weight Loss with HypnosisThis weight loss book and hypnosis CD is another selection that I got from the library. The first couple of times I listened to the CD, I fell asleep about 10 minutes into it. I had no idea what instructions it was giving me and I always woke up a couple of seconds before it ended when the instructor said that I was fully awake and refreshed now. I actually worried that it might be telling me to kill people or something, so I consciously sat through it without following the directions to relax in order to make sure it wasn’t malignant.

I haven’t tried following the diet program that the book describes. It cuts out groups of food, which is something that I’ve never succeeded at. I have a good diet plan with Weight Watchers, so I’m not looking for a way of eating. I was hoping for something positive to go into my head when I’m on my lunch hour.

Falling asleep is what you’re supposed to do when you listen to this CD, so it does a good job of causing a sense of relaxation. He spends a lot of the time just getting the subject to relax. The actual message of the hypnosis CD starts sixteen minutes into the session, so if you are hyperactive, like me, you might find his calm voice a little unnerving at first. Just let yourself listen. Worst case scenario, you’ll get an extra nap out of it. If you are looking for some positive ear candy before you go to bed or while you’re on your lunch break, this is a good book/CD for you.


Obesity Confusion

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Despite the recent study, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are urging Americans to keep obesity under control.

They urge that the study is flawed because the data may have included subjects who were thin because of diseases, such as cancer or heart disease. Comparing death rates of people with diseases could have skewed the data, making thin people appear less healthy than overweight people. I suspect that subjects who were fat and had diseases were also included. If that is true, then their complaint is unimportant.

The most important thing is that we want to be healthy. Being slightly overweight doesn’t seem to negatively affect our health as much as they have been telling us for years, but everyone agrees about being obese. Negative effects from substantial obesity have been well documented.


Reebok Cyber Rider

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Cyber RiderThis is the first exercise bike game controller I’ve seen that’s released by a well-known company.

Reebok has developed a fully dedicated website for the Cyber Rider, but it crashes spectacularly on Internet Explorer. Try viewing it with Mozilla Firefox to see the details.

This game controller is made to work with the PC or with Playstation 1 or 2. Considering the lime green coloring, I’m shocked that it doesn’t work with Xbox or Nintendo Gamecube right now, but according to their documentation, there should be upgrades available to let them work with the other formats in about three months or so. I know of some PS2 to Xbox converter cables that are available, but I suspect things would run better with the upgrade from Reebok.

How fast you pedal is how fast you go in the video game. You can control the other functions in the game using buttons on the handle bars. It looks like a really well-built bike that could be used by itself or as a controller for your game.

According to the owner’s manual, it looks like there is a lot of assembly required, which worries me. I’d hate to find out that the reason I can’t win any races on Project Gotham is because I put the bike together incorrectly. I guess I would figure that out pretty quickly.

If you are enjoying your spinning classes, this looks like a good alternative for home. You get to play some games, win some races and get some exercise. Now, we just need the game programmers to create a cool mountain biking game with calorie counting and workout modes.


Twelve Donuts

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Twelve Donuts

This postcard showed up on PostSecret. I still live with this kind of shame, so it screamed to me.

My donuts of choice were Hostess Raspberry-Filled Powdered Donuts. They don’t come in dozens, but if you’re lucky, you can get the “two free” donut box and get eight. I could eat all eight without feeling sick unless you count the shame. Thinking about it now, I still feel ashamed even though I haven’t eaten a whole box for years.

I found a two-pack of those donuts at the convenience store last month. I ate one and shared the other with Mike. The terrible irony is that they don’t taste all that good. They were sweet, but more importantly, they were always easily accessible. Whenever I had a bad day, I could stop at the gas station, pick up a 32 ounce Diet Coke and a box.

Those donuts helped me through a lot of stress and I wore them on my body for a long time. It wasn’t until I learned to deal with my stress without turning to the donuts that they finally left my hips, stomach, back, arms, legs and face. Man, that was a hard journey and seeing that postcard made me realize that I’m still ashamed that I had to travel that far.


Meditations for Weight Loss

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Meditations for Weight LossThe risk of me finding weight loss inspiration on the cheap is that I’ll find something that you might not be able to find. Sure, it’s available at Amazon.com, but the likeliness that you’ll find it at your local library like I did is slim.

This CD is pretty good to listen to. I wouldn’t recommend the track for preventing overeating when you’re in the mood to overeat. I haven’t tried it when I was in that mood, but after listening to it, I don’t think I could sit through it when I’m in that mood. That doesn’t mean it’s not a really good track to listen to, though.

I always feel a little hokey listening to meditation and hypnosis CDs. I cringe when I imagine my coworkers finding out what I’m listening to. The truth of the matter, however, is that they are really helpful. We are bombarded all day long on the television and radio urging us to eat. It’s time we started putting some positive messages in our head.

This CD has been around since 1997, so there is a chance that your library may have it available. What is more likely is that your library has another weight loss based meditation CD available. Try it out, even if you feel like a hippie. You might enjoy it more than you thought you would.


Walk while you work

By Michael Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

treadmill workstationDr. James Levine and his colleagues at the Mayo Clinic are testing workstations that allow you to stand at a computer and walk on the attached treadmill while you work. If the speed is set to something like 1.0 MPH, he’s found that you can burn an extra 100 calories per hour without losing your balance or being too distracted from work.

Other fit-at-work innovations they’re experimenting with include a carpeted track around the workspace to encourage walking and “a hockey net on the wall” so colleagues can play with something while talking to Levine. I get the impression that the Mayo Clinic is a fun place to work.

Of course, there’s no commercial product like these treadmill workstations available yet, but I wouldn’t be surprised if we see one in a few years. It’s also not too hard to rig something like this yourself if your employer doesn’t object—I’d suggest leaving the hockey net out of your proposal, though.

[via Engadget]


FTC Smackdown of Tropicana

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Tropicana's Healthy Heart Orange JuiceIt’s not just small, fly-by-night companies that make unsubstantiated health claims about their products. In 2002 and again in 2004, Tropicana ran ads that claimed that drinking two to three cups of Tropicana orange juice each day would lower blood pressure, raise good cholesterol and a host of other health benefits. They have settled with the FTC.

Weight loss and “health” is a big business. Orange juice provides many essential nutrients, but it isn’t a miracle food any more than dairy or three apples a day. Just like there isn’t a “magic bullet” pill that will melt away fat without effort, there is no “miracle food” that will solve all your health problems or make weight loss easier. There is no substitute for a healthy and balanced diet.

Via: The National Council Against Health Fraud – Consumer Health Digest


My Before Pictures

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

09-24-01 Front ViewI guess I’ve never posted these pictures because I’m so embarrassed by them. The longer it goes since I had these taken, the less that person seems like me. I can barely see myself in her eyes.

I remember that day vividly. You know before pictures always suck. They are some random picture that someone clicked that convinced the person to get healthy. Their makeup and hair are a mess or at least faded. I decided that I was going to take the best before picture I could. I straightened my hair, did my makeup perfectly, bought new exercise clothes and even did my nails before I had Mike click these.

Looking at them now, I can’t believe that I thought I looked good. No amount of new clothes, makeup or hair product can make up for being thin and healthy.


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