Category Archives: Health & Fitness

The 5 Benefits of Coconut Oil

Filed under: Food, Health & Fitness, Tips - Angelina
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Kelsey Bradshaw Blogger Biography

 

 

 

 

I was on the Paleo diet a few years ago, and although the majority of that didn’t last long (no sugar, grains, or dairy), I did take one good thing away from that experience: coconut oil. Most people negatively associate oil with greasy food, but coconut oil has a multitude of health benefits:

1. Coconut Oil Has “Good” Fat

Coconut oil consists of Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCT), which are fatty acids. Don’t see the word “fat” and panic –  these fatty acids have a different form of metabolizing than the long chains of fat that are found in cheese or steak. MCT’s go straight to your liver from the digestive tract, where they’re converted to energy or Alzheimer’s-fighting ketone bodies. This good fat balances out our hormones, our thyroid, and our blood sugar levels, as well as lowering the bad cholesterol.

2. Energy Boost

In a study published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, the MCT’s are proven to give you a 5% increase in energy. This means that by doing nothing but adding coconut oil to your diet, you can burn approximately an extra 120 calories per day!

3. Fight Infections

The next time you are not feeling very well, try taking a spoonful of coconut oil. Coconut oil contains Lauric acid and Monolaurin – both of which are natural antibiotics.

4. Summer Body

Although it seems counter-intuitive to eat fat to lose fat, the unique way that coconut oil is metabolized can result in an appetite-reducing effect with up to 256 fewer calories in a day! The unique metabolizing factor also leads to a decrease in abdominal fat, which (as anyone who’s ever tried to lose weight, ever, knows) can be difficult to lose.

5. Lotion / Hair Conditioner

Coconut oil, being an oil, is obviously going to be moisturizing. This, combined with its anti-bacterial properties and delicious coconut scent, makes it the perfect way to soften your skin or hair.

If you haven’t tried coconut oil, I highly recommend it. So, what are you waiting for?

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Preparing For The Stuffing

Filed under: Food, Health & Fitness, Seasonal Celebrations, Tips - Angelina
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Bailey Buckingham Blogger Biography

 

 

 

 

We all know Thanksgiving is infamous for making us feel sluggish and bloated. We may even incidentally gain a few pounds from holiday meals and then feel guilty for eating all of that wonderfully delicious food. For the past couple of years, I discovered a way to make my Thanksgiving meals more enjoyable by preparing for a giant feast. About two weeks prior, I have done a small “almost diet” to balance out the weight gain. I want to share the four steps I take to prepare my body before I hit that huge bowl of stuffing!

1. No Soda

UGH, I know, this isn’t easy. Soda has become a dominant drink for our consumption, especially for college students. I’m a huge diet coke drinker, and even though it is diet, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have a ton of sugar. I cut it out completely and stuck to sparkling water. I always lose a few pounds just from that alone!

2. No Fast Food

Again, as a college student, fast food is sometimes the answer to all my problems, but a few weeks before turkey day, I lay off. Even if you get a prepared salad, it will have twice as many calories as if you were to prepare it yourself at home.

3. Drink Water

I’m a pretty decent water drinker on a regular basis, but during this season I quick it up a notch. I drink about 8 bottles a day, and I add lemon because it is an amazing natural detox.

4. Add Some Exercise

I go up and down through phases of exercise, and definitely around midterms I hit a lull. So, for the few weeks before the holidays I make sure that I at least walk 1 mile, do 50 pushups, sit-ups, and a plank every day. It really doesn’t take that long at all, and it’s amazing how great your body feels just from that small amount of exercise!

I encourage you to tweek this list and make it your own, but I promise it will make your Thanksgiving meal (and the following upcoming holiday meals) that much more enjoyable knowing that you are aware of your body’s limits and that you are taking care of it!

Just remember that it is normal for everyone to add a couple of pounds during the colder season, especially when big heavy meals

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5 Healthy Meals for College Students – Brought to You by BookRenter™ and ZocDoc

Filed under: College Life, Food, Health & Fitness, Money/Budget, Tips - BookRenter Team
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Eating well while you’re in school can be a challenge for a myriad of reasons: it’s expensive (I’m looking at you, Whole Foods, you temptress); there aren’t enough hours in the day for extensive prep time; and dorm rooms don’t usually have the necessary appliances to create that gourmet experience.

That’s why BookRenter partnered with ZocDoc to create five healthy, quick meals on the cheap to add variety and protein to your daily food consumption.

Each meal:
• Is less than 500 calories
• Costs under $3 per serving
• Takes 30 minutes or less to make
• Requires only a microwave

These quick and easy ideas are sure to satisfy your hunger pangs, wallet, and other limitations. So get to cooking!

healthy meals

5 Healthy Meals for the College Student – An infographic by the team at ZocDoc and Bookrenter

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Fitting In Fitness

Filed under: College Life, Health & Fitness, Tips - Angelina
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Kelsey Bradshaw Blogger Biography

 

 

 

 

The beginning of a new school year is a busy time between catching up with old friends, making new ones, and trying to find time for schoolwork while the weather is still nice and the lake is calling your name. Oh yeah, and you’re supposed to remain fit during all of the craziness? Yikes.

Making time for exercise is actually a lot easier than you think! Here are some simple ways to squeeze some fitness in during those busy college days:

1. Schedule It

Instead of telling yourself you will work out tomorrow, set a specific time of when. Schedule a time after your last class of the day, for example, and try to make it in every time you have that class. Or, wake up extra early for an early morning workout. If you have a set time to work out, it will feel like it is a part of your busy schedule and will become habitual.

 

2. Fitness Class

If you sign up for a fitness class, you will feel obligated to attend! These classes typically only take an hour of your time and offer a full-body workout. Most university gyms also offer group fitness classes that have a variety of ways to exercise (kickboxing, cycling, etc) and are less than an hour.

3. Workout Buddy

Going to the gym is always easier when you have someone to go with. They will be encouraging you on those days when it would be easier to sleep in, rather than hitting the treadmill. Plus, the time spent will go by faster!

4. Athletic Club

Most colleges have a ton of athletic club sports or intramural teams you can join. Not only is it a great way to stay in shape, it’s a great way to meet people. Along with that, if you make friends on the team, you will want to show up to see them. Win-win!

5. Interval Training

Doing intervals (short, intense workout bursts with frequent rest versus one long workout) is a great way to get a lot more sweaty in a lot less time than a normal workout. This can work for weight training, the treadmill, or whatever.

Although it may seem like you are too busy to exercise, it is important and really not too hard to find time. There are multiple ways to find ways to make it fit, depending on your schedule and what you what to achieve. You need to fit in time for fitness!

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The Power Of A Nap

Filed under: College Life, Health & Fitness - Angelina
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Loni Gibson Blogger Biography

 

 

 

 

With classes in full swing, you may be finding it a bit difficult to get a good night’s sleep. Don’t feel guilty about a power nap before you start studying, there are many benefits associated with sneaking in a decent nap before class or starting homework.

1. Memory

Napping improves your working memory associated with completing complex tasks where you actually need to pay attention. While you are sleeping, your memories are moved to the neocortex and become stored as long-term memories.

2. Perception

Naps improve your sensory perception, meaning when you wake up your walls are brighter, your Chipotle smells better, and your Dr. Pepper is that much more refreshing. Napping also loosens and refreshes your web of ideas and helps fuse everything together. Think of it like re-fragmenting your computer; this is what sleeping does to your brain.

3. Health

Sleep deprivation increases the stress hormone, cortisol. Too much cortisol weakens your muscular and immune system, increases glucose intolerance, adds abdominal fat, and decreases levels of growth hormones and testosterone in your body.

4. Normal Functioning

Piling homework on with no sleep actually decreases your productivity. Sleep is required for normal daily functioning, especially for the life of a busy college student. So do yourself a favor and take a quick nap every now and then. You won’t regret it.

Anyone sleepy yet?

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