Physical education is key to improving a child’s confidence, brainpower and long-term health

One of the most important things parents can give to their children is a physical education or involvement in organized sports activity. Physical education has slipped in priority over the last few years, especially in our public schools. Some schools don’t even have recess anymore. They’re producing children that can (sometimes) pass standardized tests at the academic level, but who are obese, diabetic, predisposed to heart disease and likely to live a relatively short life with high medical costs and lots of pain and suffering to boot. But what good is an education program that educates children on academics if those students won’t live a productive, healthy life using their academic skills?

That’s why I think physical education needs to be put back into our public schools as a top priority. Ten minutes of recess a day is not enough. Beyond recess, parents would do well to get their kids involved in additional physical education programs, like after-school programs or organized sports — anything that involves moving the body, whether it’s running track, playing soccer, playing basketball, practicing gymnastics… you name it. These are all excellent for children.

Written by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger

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Nation’s exercise levels ‘shockingly low’

Almost one in 10 adults have not walked continuously for five minutes in the past four weeks, according to one of the most comprehensive studies conducted into physical fitness levels in England.

New research examining the lifestyles of a million adults, carried out by the Centre for Market and Public Organisation at Bristol University, paints an alarming picture of a country where “there are very high levels of physical inactivity”. The authors of the study argue that levels of physical activity are heavily influenced by socioeconomic factors.

The study, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, used the government’s annual Active People Surveys, dating back to 2006, to examine physical activity across all of England’s local authorities and measure it against factors such as income and ethnicity.

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Sugar Cravings, When Too Much of a Good Thing Becomes a Health Concern

I think it’s fair to say we’ve all had our share of cravings; whether you’re a guy longing for an ice cold beer after a hot humid day of mowing the lawn, or a pregnant woman who can’t stop thinking about hot fudge sundaes. But what if your cravings ALL revolve around sugary sweets, the dreaded sugar cravings? Do you consider yourself to have an insatiable sweet tooth? While it’s an easy thing to overlook, and just accept thefact that you live for desserts, your sugar cravings can be a red flag indicating some underlying health issues. Before we get into what these concerns may be, let’s be sure you understand what I mean when I say a “sweet tooth” or “constant sugar cravings”… everyone loves the smell of fresh baked chocolate chip cookies, and while most people can stop at one or two, I’m talking about those of us that can’t. For me, my weakness is Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. It wasn’t until I realized they were becoming a daily habit (justifying it by thinking everyone has their “thing”) that I knew I had to figure out what was causing my obsession. After a few weeks of succumbing to my sugar craving, they tasted great going down, but left me feeling nothing but guilt and a bit of a sugar crash.

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How to lose weight and keep it off

Being active is an important part of losing weight and keeping it off. The more active you are the more calories you burn up, which can make it easier to lose weight.

Why does weight matter?

Many people worry about their weight at some point during their life. Maybe you have struggled with your weight going up and down for years, or perhaps it increased following a difficult time in your life.

If you are overweight or obese, you are not alone – according to the World Health Organization, around 1.4 billion adults worldwide are overweight or obese. But being overweight or obese can increase your risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure.

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Exercising Regularly

To help meet your goals of exercising regularly, invest in some home exercise equipment. If the equipment is right there, you won’t be tempted to skip your exercise routine due to lack of time. Your motivation will be right there staring you in the face all evening and so you’ll go do it.

Reduce stress on your muscles and avoid injury by warming-up before working out. Adequately warming-up will loosen up stiff muscles and get the blood flowing to them. Sudden movements on muscles that have not been properly warmed-up prior to exercise can result in pulled muscles, strains, and even tears.

If you want to burn off that excess fat, you should work on doing strength training exercises. Not only will these exercises burn calories while you’re going them, but they’ll build up muscle. The more muscle you have, the more calories you’ll burn at a resting rate. It’s why when you don’t take in enough calories each day, your body starts to burn off your muscle rather than the excess fat. If you’re taking in less calories, your body tries to eliminate what it is using the most.

Written by Total Health Links

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300 – A Haunting Reality and Harbinger of Change

I have a very odd relationship with my bathroom scale. It’s like one of those on again/off again love/hate relationships you see in most bad daytime TV dramas. If the numbers on it are moving down it’s my best friend. I visit it constantly, happily stepping on it multiple times a day and jotting down the falling numbers. If the number is moving up however it’s a totally different scenario. I don’t return any of it’s calls and only step on it when I’ve had too many drinks and it’s 3 in the morning and I shouldn’t be stepping on it ether way. No matter what the number is though I can normally step off the scale, rationalize the result somehow, and continue my dysfunctional relationship. Every once in a while though, I hop on there and get a number that results in a knock-down, drag-out, change my relationship status on Facebook to single, and lock myself in a room kind of funk. I think there is a number for all of us, that number that makes us look at ourselves grimly in the mirror and utter terrible words like, “fat-ass”, “gross”, or “disgusting” in our subconscious mind. For me that magical and evil number that makes me want to scream and yell at the universe for hours on end is 300 pounds.

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America’s Lifestyle Diseases Cost the Economy over $153 Billion per Year

Lifestyle diseases such as obesity, hypertension, diabetes, cancer and depression are costing the American economy $153 billion per year in lost productivity.

Based on data collected via the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, researchers concluded that chronic health conditions such as obesity, hypertension, high cholesterol, cancer, diabetes, asthma, depression and recurring physical pain resulted in 449,847,652 days missed from work… and an estimated productivity loss of $153,398,049,221 per year.

This calculation doesn’t include productivity lost when employees show up at work but are less productive because of their poor health.

As well, the Gallup people didn’t speak with part-time workers.

Previous research which included these factors found that America’s chronic lifestyle diseasescost the nation up to $1.1 trillion per year.

And that’s a lot of money.

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