All posts by admin

Healthy Recipe: Beef Zucchini Boats

Just like watermelon is the quintessential fruit of summer, zucchini seems to be the vegetable mascot. You see the summer squash everywhere, and sometimes it can be difficult to come up with new ideas for it, but because zucchini has such a mild flavor, the possibilities really are endless.

zucchini boats

These zucchini boats are low in calories and carbohydrates (300 calories and 10 grams of carbohydrates per serving), yet high in protein (24 grams per serving). They’re simple to make and even simpler to adapt to your tastes. This recipe, which serves 4, will get you started, but you can add beans or any other vegetables of your choice.

What You Need:
  • 2 medium zucchini
  • 3/4 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 small white onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup diced red pepper
  • 1/2 cup diced green pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
What To Do:
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Cut the ends off zucchini and cut each zucchini in half lengthwise.
  3. Use a teaspoon to scoop out the insides of the zucchini halves, leaving a shell or “boat”.
  4. Finely chop the zucchini insides and transfer to a skillet, along with beef, onion, peppers, and garlic. Cook over medium heat until beef is no longer pink.
  5. Remove from heat and add remaining ingredients. Mix well.
  6. Spoon mixture into zucchini shells and place in a 9×13 inch baking dish.
  7. Bake, uncovered, for 30 minutes, or until zucchini is tender, but not mushy.

What is HIIT? And Should I Be Doing It?

HIIT, or high-intensity interval training, is nothing new, but with the help of the #HIIT community on social media, the concept has been gaining lots of traction in the fitness world lately. Although HIIT can be done anywhere at any time, lots of gyms are popping up with HIIT classes due to the increasing popularity. So what exactly is HIIT? And how can you make it work for you? We’re here to let you know!

HIIT

What is HIIT?

The most basic definition of HIIT is a workout that alternates between intense bursts of activity and periods of less intense activity, or complete rest; but here’s the catch: in order to qualify as HIIT, you need to push yourself to your max for all of the intense bursts of activity. This means that you need to go as hard as you can go (at least a 9 on a scale of 1 to 10) for the full time, and then you can slow it down during the rest periods. Because HIIT requires you to perform at full intensity, the periods of work are short, usually ranging anywhere from 20 to 90 seconds.

A basic example of a HIIT workout is sprinting for one full minute then walking for two minutes, and repeating this set for a period of up 45 minutes.

Benefits of HIIT

The beauty of HIIT is in the intensity. Research shows that when you work harder, your body requires more oxygen, which leads to greater calorie burn. This also translates to burning more calories before and after your workout, or what is known as excess post-exercise oxygen consumption, or EPOC. High-intensity cardiovascular exercise — the kind that leaves you out of breath — raises your metabolic rate to the point where you could burn as much as six to fifteen percent more calories even after your workout ends.

  • Increased fat burning
  • Greater cardiovascular (heart) benefits
  • Improves insulin sensitivity and cholesterol profiles
  • Builds muscle while also burning fat
  • Boosts metabolism
  • Improves endurance
  • Takes less time
  • You can do it anywhere
  • No equipment necessary

Importance of Rest

The high-intensity exercise portion of HIIT is not the only piece of the puzzle though. The rest is just as important. Requiring your body to alternate between two very different states (intense cardio and rest) is excellent cardiovascular conditioning and allows you perform better during the intense activity, which translates to more fat burn. So just like you shouldn’t skimp on intensity, make sure you’re also getting the full period of rest.

Getting Started

There is no one size fits all approach to HIIT; but if you’re new to the fitness trend, there are some basic guidelines you can follow to develop a program that works for you. A good place to start is with a 1:2 ratio of work to rest. That means you’ll be doing an intense exercise, such as running stairs, sprinting, burpees, or spinning, for half as long as you’re resting. So if you’re working for one full intense minute, you’ll rest for two minutes. Repeat this cycle for around 20 to 45 minutes, or until you just can’t handle any more. As you get used to HIIT training, transition your work to rest ratio to 1:1 — one minute working and one minute resting.

Product of the Month: Skip-a-Meal Replacement Beverage

The Skip-a-Meal Replacement Beverage from Progressive Laboratories is without a doubt one of our most popular supplements. It tastes great, it works, and it’s easy to incorporate into a busy lifestyle. It’s especially great to incorporate into those summer months, when you’re hungry, but don’t feel like cooking up a hot meal. That’s why we made Skip-a-Meal part of both our July and August monthly special.

Monthly Special Details

With this special you receive 4 WEEKS of everything listed below for only $295 (that’s a savings of over $200)!

Physician Consult & Weekly Weigh-ins
Meal Plans
FDA Approved Medications
Meta-Blast Supplements
Crave-away Supplements
Weekly Upgraded Injection of B-12
Bi-Weekly Injection of Lipo X
Full Body Analysis on our BODYCOMP Scale

Plus, the product of the month ABSOLUTELY FREE!

skip-a-meal replacement beverage

All about Skip-a-Meal

The Skip-a-Meal Replacement Shake is a whey protein meal replacement shake that serves as a high-protein, low calorie replacement for a higher calorie meal. You can replace one meal with a shake each day, or all three meals. It’s totally up to you.

The shake contains several vitamins and minerals, so it serves as a balanced nutrition source, just like a healthy meal would. One serving of the Skip-a-Meal replacement shakes provides only 192 calories and at least 30% (in some cases, it provides 35%) of each of these vitamins and minerals: vitamin A, vitamin C, calcium, iron, vitamin D, vitamin E, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B-6, folate, vitamin B-12, biotin, pantothenic acid, phosphorus, iodine, magnesium, zinc, and copper. So if you’re drinking the meal replacement three times a day, you don’t have to worry about getting the nutrients you need.

A single serving of the shake also provides 24 grams of protein and 6 grams of fiber but only 2 grams of sugar and 5 grams of fat. The even better news? One tub contains 15 servings and you get it FREE when you sign up for our monthly special. Choose from vanilla, chocolate, or strawberry.

If you have any questions about Skip-a-Meal or you want to take advantage of our monthly special, contact us TODAY!

DISCLAIMER * These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Healthy Recipe: Watermelon Salsa

Watermelon is the quintessential summer treat; and while it’s delicious just as it is, we like to shake things up a bit. This watermelon salsa is fresh, tasty, and easy to whip up on a whim. We like serving it with plantain chips, but feel free to serve it with your favorite salsa accompaniment.

watermelon salsa
What You Need:

  • Zest from 1 lime
  • 1/4 c. fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 3 c. seeded, finely chopped watermelon
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and diced
  • 1 mango, peeled and diced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
  • 1/2 c. chopped red onion
  • 1/3 c. chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • Plantain chips, for serving
What To Do:
  1. Mix lime zest, lime juice, and honey in a small bowl. Stir well.
  2. Combine remaining ingredients, except for plantain chips, in a large serving bowl. Fold together until combined. Pour lime and honey mixture over watermelon mixture. Toss until evenly coated.
  3. Serve with plantain chips.
watermelon

Watermelon: Five Reasons to Eat the Summer Fruit

Watermelon has become an unofficial mascot of summer. It’s almost impossible to go to a picnic or a barbecue without seeing the juicy red fruit as part of the spread. You might choose watermelon because it tastes refreshing and delicious, but did you know that the melon also provides some remarkable health benefits?

watermelon

1. It’s hydrating.

We know that drinking water prevents dehydration, which is especially important during these summer months; but did you know that eating foods with a high water content can also help keep you hydrated? Not only that, foods with a higher water content help keep you full.

Although there is a slight variation, most sources agree that watermelon is somewhere between 90 and 92 percent water, making it one of the most water-packed foods you can eat.

2. It’s low in calories, but packed with nutrients.

Because of its high water content, watermelon is low in calories, but don’t let that fool you. The summer fruit is a powerhouse of nutrients. A cup of cubed watermelon contains:

  • 17 percent of your daily vitamin A
  • 21 percent of your daily vitamin C
  • 5 percent of your daily potassium
  • 4 percent of your daily magnesium
  • 3 percent of your daily vitamins B1, B5, and B6

and the antioxidants lycopene and cucurbitacin E, which help fight inflammation and chronic disease.

3. Watermelon might combat cancer.

Watermelon is one of the richest source of lycopene, a phytochemical that’s responsible for the fruit’s red color. Studies have shown that lycopene may help prevent and treat prostate cancer, although no official conclusions have been reached. In addition to combating cancer, lycopene can help improve heart health and bone health. One cup of watermelon contains 7 to 10 milligrams of lycopene. Other sources of lycopene include tomato, red grapefruit, and guava.

4. It can improve heart health.

Watermelon contains an amino acid called citrulline, which converts to another amino acid — arginine — in the body. Both of these amino acids can help improve circulation and blood flow, two factors that are important for the health of your heart. A study done in 2012 found that taking watermelon extract supplements may even help reduce high blood pressure.

5. It may reduce muscle soreness.

In addition to helping your heart, the improved circulation and blood flow from the amino acids citrulline and arginine may also help soothe muscle soreness. In a study published in the Journal of Agricultural Food and Chemistry, researchers reported that athletes who drank watermelon juice before a hard workout experienced a lower heart rate and reduced muscle soreness the next day.

And aside from these health benefits, simply put, watermelon tastes great! What is your favorite thing about watermelon? Are you a fan of the summer treat?

Childhood Obesity: Is Technology to Blame?

The World Health Organization declared childhood obesity as one of the most serious public health challenges of the 21st century. Since the 1970s, childhood obesity rates have tripled in the US, and now, 1 in every 6 American children is obese. But in addition to the estimated 12.5 million children that are obese, there are also about 11 million more who are overweight.

child tv

Childhood obesity is not just a physical health concern, it can negatively affect a child’s emotional and social development too. And the record shows that obese children are more likely to become obese adults, which sets them up for the development of chronic health problems like heart disease and diabetes at a much younger age.

Cause of Childhood Obesity

So what’s to blame? There isn’t a simple answer to that; but experts agree that it’s a combination of a diet filled with processed and fast foods and lack of physical exercise due to an increase in “screen time” — or the amount of time spent with technology. Because increasing technology use is such a big thing right now, we’re going to focus on that. That’s not to say that it’s the only culprit, but we want to give you a little perspective on why technology may not be as harmless as you think.

Technology Usage Soars

The American Academy of Pediatrics estimates that the average child spends around seven hours each day watching TV, browsing the internet, and playing video games. An obvious issue with this is that as the amount of screen time increases, the amount of time spent outside running around and burning off calories — and energy — decreases; however, there are other not-so-obvious issues too.

Food Marketing

In a 2008 study, the Journal of the American Dietetic Association reported that nine out of 10 food advertisements shown during Saturday morning children’s cartoons are foods that are low in nutrients, yet high in fat, sodium, and sugar. Even though you may not realize it, this food marketing has a major impact on the foods your child wants to eat. Children are said to be even more susceptible to this food marketing because, unlike adults, they have a hard time telling the difference between the TV show they’re watching and the advertisements.

Technology Increases Snacking

Screen time is also associated with an increase in snacking or mindless eating. According to research from the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, kids who spent more time in front of a screen — regardless of whether it was a computer, TV, or video game — not only snacked more than children who spent less time using technology, but they also ate fewer healthy snacks. Other research shows that the more stimulating programs, like action games or high-paced cartoons, can also lead to an increase in snacking during the day.

Technology Interferes With Sleep

Technology can also disrupt sleep, which can translate to weight gain. On one hand, focusing on a screen right before bed can disrupt circadian rhythms and melatonin, which can lead to difficulty falling asleep and cause restless sleep. On the other hand, if a child has a television in his or her bedroom and usage is not being monitored, it may lead to later bedtimes, and a decreased amount of the restorative sleep needed for the body to function properly. As we discussed in a previous article, a lack of adequate sleep can cause an increase in ghrelin, the hormone that tells you you’re hungry, and a decrease in leptin, the hormone that tells you you’re full. On average, a person who doesn’t get enough sleep eats an extra 300 calories per day and snacks more often than someone who is well-rested.

Technology Recommendations

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children and adolescents spend only one to two hours per day in front of a screen, at most. This means time spent watching TV and playing on the computer or a tablet combined.

You can help limit screen time by getting involved in playtime with your kids. Pick an activity that you both enjoy and get outside and work up a sweat together. Encourage your kids to get off the couch by playing with them. Model good behavior by putting away your cell phone or tablet and getting fully engaged in the moment.

Weight Loss Program

If you have a child who is overweight or obese, we can help. Valley Medical Weight Control’s program for adolescents includes 4 weeks of FDA-approved medication for children aged 12 and older, a bottle of our Mega Multivitamin and Minerals, a bottle of probiotics, a physician consultation, and weekly weigh-ins: all for just $120!

To learn more, stop by or call us at any of our locations:

North Phoenix: 602-374-3374
Phoenix: 602-441-3305
Tempe: 480-968-5673

Product of the Month! Metasol ™ Low-Molecular-Weight Lychee Polyphenol (Oligonol®)

June is here; and although it’s not officially summer, that summer feeling is in full force.  It’s time to start shedding some layers and showing off that body you’ve been working hard for. If you’re not where you want to be yet, our product of the month will help with that final push.

When you purchase our monthly special, which includes:

Physician Consult & Weekly Weigh-ins
Meal Plans
FDA Approved Medications
MetaBlast Supplements
Craveaway Supplements
Weekly Upgraded Injection of B-12
Bi-Weekly Injection of Lipo X
Full Body Analysis on our BODYCOMP Scale

in June, you’ll also receive our product of the month – Metasol™ Low-Molecular-Weight Lychee Polyphenol (Oligonol®) – for FREE!

metasol

With this special you receive 4 WEEKS of everything listed above for only $295 (that’s a savings of over $200) – and we’ll throw in the Metasol™ at absolutely no additional cost.

What is Metasol?

Metasol™ is a low molecular weight polyphenol that helps boost your metabolism. The low molecular weight makes the polyphenols in Metasol™ easier to absorb. In fact, Metasol™ has been shown to be five times more bio-available than other polyphenol supplements.

A published, randomized, double-blind human clinical trial lasting 10 weeks found that compared to placebo, taking 200mg of Oligonol daily:

  • Reduced visceral fat volume by 15%*
  • Shrank waist circumference by 3 centimeters*
  • Caused a significant reduction in body weight*
  • Increased sensitivity to insulin*

The main ingredient in Metasol™ is an Oligonol Proprietary Blend which comes from lychee fruit extract and green tea extract.

Learn more about Metasol™ here.

Contact Us

If you want to advantage of this special offer and sign up for our monthly special, drop in or call us at either one of our locations to find out more!

North Phoenix: 602-374-3374
Phoenix: 602-441-3305
Tempe: 480-968-5673

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). These products do not diagnose‚ treat or cure any disease or medical condition.

Healthy Recipe: Salt and Vinegar Roasted Potatoes

It seems like every decade there’s a new diet craze. In the 90s, it was low-fat, which eventually gave way to low-carb. Now Paleo and keto are the new diet trends in town; but it doesn’t matter how the trends change, there’s always some idea that sticks around, even when the trend is gone. One longstanding belief that has persisted since the low-carbohydrate phase is that white potatoes are bad for you.

potatoes

Benefits of Potatoes

While it’s true that white potatoes are high in carbohydrates, they have a valid place in any healthy weight loss plan. One medium size potato contains only 110 calories, but nearly half your daily needs for vitamin C and more potassium than a banana. White potatoes also contain no fat, sodium, or cholesterol and are rich in fiber, magnesium, vitamin B-6 and antioxidants. Most of the carbohydrates are in the form of resistant starch, a unique type of carbohydrate that functions like soluble fiber and can help reduce appetite, lower blood sugar levels, help with insulin sensitivity, and improve digestion.

Of course, like any other food, it’s important to watch your portions, but adding white potatoes to your diet a couple times a week is not only okay, it’s beneficial.

The Recipe

One of our favorite treats is salt and vinegar chips, and while technically they’re white potatoes, the fact that they’re deep fried makes them less than ideal. We don’t like to have to give up our favorite flavors, so we created this roasted salt and vinegar potato recipe that gives you all the flavor without any of the guilt.

What You Need:
  • 2 lbs red potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
What To Do:
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Cut potatoes into 1-inch chunks. We like to keep the skin on, but feel free to peel first if you prefer them skinless.
  3. Combine remaining ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Whisk until combined.
  4. Add potatoes to bowl and toss until potatoes are evenly coated with vinegar mixture. Spread potatoes out on a baking sheet and put in the preheated oven.
  5. Roast for 25 minutes, remove potatoes from oven, and flip them over with a spatula. Return to the oven for another 20-25 minutes until potatoes are crisp on the outside.
  6. Optional: after the potatoes are done cooking, sprinkle some additional salt or apple cider vinegar on them, to taste.

Morning Versus Evening: What’s the Best Time to Exercise?

There are two kinds of people in this world: people who exercise at the crack of dawn before starting their day, and people who wouldn’t even dream of tying on those gym shoes until evening. Okay, so maybe there are some variations of this, like people who work out on their lunch break or people who don’t work out at all, but we’re going to keep it simple and discuss working out in the morning versus the evening and whether there’s a greater benefit to exercising at a specific time of the day.

exercise

The Bottom Line

We’re going to get right to the point here: there is no good evidence to suggest that working out at a certain time of day is more beneficial for everyone. Morning workouts have specific advantages, while exercising in the evening also has its perks; but if there’s one thing the experts agree on it’s this: the most important thing about working out is consistency. It doesn’t matter what time of day you do it, as long as you do it regularly.

That being said, we’re still going to break down the benefits of morning exercise versus evening exercise to help you decide which choice is best for you.

Benefits of Exercising in the Morning

  • As a general rule, research has shown that exercising in the morning leads to greater consistency. When you get your workout in right away, there is less of a chance that a stressful day, fatigue, or other plans will derail you from your routine.
  • Research has also shown that exercising in the morning can create a domino effect of healthy choices throughout the day. When you start your day with a workout, you’re more likely to eat a healthier breakfast, drink more water, and make the choices that keep you on track to reaching your goals.
  • If you’re hitting the gym to exercise, you may prefer the morning for your workout. Statistics shows that gyms are usually the busiest between the hours of 5 and 8 p.m. Getting there in the morning means that you’ll have easier access to the gym equipment you need, and just a quieter scene, if that’s what you prefer.
  • People who work out in the morning tend to get more sleep than people who work out in the evening because the anticipation of an early wake-up call prompts them to go to bed sooner.

Benefits of Exercising in the Evening

  • Even if you’re a morning person, finding the strength to exercise first thing can be difficult. Research shows that people who work out in the evening tend to exercise at a greater intensity than people who work out in the morning. Evening exercisers also tend to be more alert, making accidents and injuries less likely.
  • Let’s face it, long days can be stressful and working out is a great tool to relieve that stress. Working out in the evening gives you time to release that stress in a healthy way, instead of hitting happy hour or turning to comfort foods.
  • According to research, workouts tend to be more effective when your body temperature is higher; whereas cold body temperatures leave muscles stiff and more susceptible to injury. Because body temperature naturally increases throughout the day, muscle strength and endurance tend to be better in the afternoon and evening.

Exercise Recommendations

Regardless of when you decide to exercise, you have to do it enough to reap the benefits. Of course, depending on your specific goals, you may have to work out harder or longer, or target specific muscle areas, but the American Heart Association set basic guidelines for everyone as a baseline: at least 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity exercise; or at least 75 minutes per week of vigorous intensity aerobic exercise.

Ultimately, the choice on whether you exercise best in the morning or in the evening is yours. The most important thing is consistency, so choose whatever time allows you to stick to your routine. You can even change it up from day to day, as long as you get it done!

Product of the Month! Douglas Laboratories Super HCA (Garcinia Cambogia)

May is here, and that means we’re in our last month before it’s officially summer. Don’t panic at the word though, there’s still plenty of time to reach your goals and a lot that you can accomplish in a month. Even better news? We saved one of our most powerful supplements to include with our monthly special for May.

As always, our monthly special includes:

Physician Consult & Weekly Weigh-ins
Meal Plans
FDA Approved Medications
MetaBlast Supplements
Craveaway Supplements
Weekly Upgraded Injection of B-12
Bi-Weekly Injection of Lipo X
Full Body Analysis on our BODYCOMP Scale

And for the special product for March: DOUGLAS LABORATORIES SUPER HCA

Super HCA

With this special you receive 4 WEEKS of everything listed above for only $295 (that’s a savings of over $200) – and we’ll throw in the Super HCA for FREE!

Of course, we wouldn’t leave you hanging without letting you know exactly what Super HCA is and why you need it TODAY.

Benefits of Super HCA

Garcinia Cambogia comes from a small tamarind fruit grown throughout India, southern Asia and parts of Africa. While the fruit is commonly used as an ingredient in foods like chutneys and curries, its popularity in the United States revolves around an extract removed from its rind. This extract is believed to hold much of the food’s weight loss abilities.

Inside each rind is a substance known as hydroxycitric acid, or HCA, which is extracted and used as a weight loss supplement. One of the primary ways this supplement works is by inhibiting a substance called citrate lyase — an enzyme that turns fats into carbohydrates. This prevents excess carbohydrates from being stored as fat in the body.

Garcinia Cambogia can also help suppress your appetite. The HCA increases serotonin levels in the brain, which can make you feel less hungry. It also reduces stress and anxiety, which can mean less emotional eating.

Supplement Facts

Each tablet of Super HCA provides 1,400 milligrams of Garcinia Cambogia extract and 60% hydroxycitric acid, or HCA. Unlike many commonly used diet supplements, HCA is not a central nervous system stimulant; so it won’t leave you feeling wired or jittery.

If you’re interested in taking advantage of this special offer and signing up for our monthly special, drop in or call us at either one of our locations to find out more!

North Phoenix: 602-374-3374
Phoenix: 602-441-3305
Tempe: 480-968-5673