Could Peppermint Tea be the Key to Trimming your Waist?

Could Peppermint Tea be the Key to Trimming your Waist?

Many wonder health benefits of Peppermint Tea. Photo credit WhatBenefit.com.

There are many wonderfoods that help people lose weight that have been tried and tested such as apples, steaks (yes, surprisingly!), lentils, olive oil, avocado and chillies. Lately, however, experts are talking about how people who want to lose weight should start drinking more tea –the winter-appropriate peppermint tea, to be more exact. But “how could something as simple as peppermint tea help me lose weight?” you may ask.

Suppress Appetite for Eating More
According to experts, peppermint tea helps suppress one’s appetite. The strong scent in this herb helps keep cravings in check so it’s been suggested that sipping a hot cup of the minty tea after meals can keep your hankering for a slice of chocolate cake at bay.

Digestive Aid for Weight Loss
That peppermint tea is a digestive aid helps boost the idea that the tea can assist in weight loss. Rudolph Ballentine, author of “Diet and Nutrition” suggests that having problems in the digestive system leads to poor nutrient absorption. Poor nutrient assimilation wakes up your body’s food cravings while, on the opposite end of the spectrum, a healed digestive system won’t want to eat more than it should. Additionally, peppermint tea can get rid of constipation thereby improving digestion, allowing nutrients to get in your body, and keeping you from succumbing to your food cravings.

Lower Anxiety and Fatigue
It’s also worth knowing that peppermint tea can help you relax. NASA studies have found that the scent of peppermint helps lower anxiety and fatigue levels. It stands to reason, then, that people who tend to eat when they are stressed can be calmed and soothed by some peppermint tea, helping them forget about their frustrations and staving off their desires to “eat their feelings”.

Lower the Cortisol Level
Also, peppermint tea helps lower the cortisol levels which become heightened when a person is stressed out. High cortisol levels can wreak havoc on your metabolism, making it harder to lose the extra weight  you want to get rid of so it may be in your best interest to sip some calming peppermint tea.

Of course, despite all the benefits that peppermint or peppermint tea brings to people who wish to lose weight, nutrition and fitness experts are quick to add that one might only truly reap the weight loss benefits of peppermint by modifying your diet and developing a good fitness regimen.
Peppermint tea cannot spur fat loss on its own but paired up with an improved, healthier lifestyle which includes a nutritious diet and regular physical activity, peppermint tea can support weight loss.

 

About the Author
Health and Fitness Tips by FitFarms, the award winning Weight Loss Camp in the United Kingdom. Awarded Britain’s Best Weight Loss Camp by The Sunday Times Travel Magazine.

Very Special Day At FitFarms Weight Loss Camp (Report)

Very Special Day At FitFarms Weight Loss Camp (Report)

Exercise at Weight Loss Boot Camp.

As always, today is jam packed with things to do, beginning with measurements and mentor sessions, but that’s as nice as it’s going to get, after breakfast the hard work begins with Zu’s introduction to exercise followed by our circuits class with a little extra and then yoga, all before lunch!

After lunch the workload continues with boxing, interval training, abs and balls and a little stretch all before dinner.

The last class of the day is an introduction to resistance training with Ian. It’s the basics! Basic techniques, important teaching points and in a simple routine that will act as both a workout and an opportunity to gain a better understanding. This way those that need the technique get the help that they need and those that want a workout get the sweat they need!

We are very proud of the fact that here at FitFarms, we are as much about understanding your own body and making informed decisions on your future healthier lifestyle as we are about enjoying the exercise and getting you nearer the end result your looking for.

This week is not going to be an easy one for us, the clients are all very happy and pleasant and seem very keen and jolly, but some are lacking in motivation, severely! But that’s why they’re here, and so we will do our very best to motivate and enthuse them during their stay but by the end of their course they will need to be feeling the benefits and feeling positive in order for them to maintain what they will of achieved through all their hard work.

This way they will have proven to themselves how much they are capable of and they will be able to see how it feels to be fitter, fingers crossed for the rest of the week, today has been a good start, let’s just hope the energy and enthusiasm carries them through the week.

Great Day At The Holistic Weight Loss Boot Camp

Great Day At The Holistic Weight Loss Boot Camp

Well we survived yesterday! By we I mean the instructors, and by survived I mean we weren’t beaten with our own equipment!

The group worked really hard yesterday and pushed through some major mental barriers of exercise and motivation, so it’s only fair that we give them something they can get excited and be positive about in order to keep the moral as high as possible, so we are going to let them kick us!..

It’s that time of the week again where myself and Ian step up to the challenge of becoming human kick bags for around 3 hours of the morning, in our double trouble session we use kicking techniques as part of our very own take on a legs bums and tums work out. Now I’m not silly! I know that if the ladies went into this session with too much energy in reserve, they would be the only ones walking out of it! So it’s my turn for the wake up workout, and I chooooooooooose……. High intensity interval training!!!! Great way to wear ou…… Er I mean warm up! Those legs ;-)…

After the wake up workout is breakfast and after breakfast is our double trouble session… Perfect timing if you ask me. Whilst the idea of kicking people holding kick pads, or boxing using the focus pads does not appeal to some, because of the aggressive nature of the sport or discipline, we try our very best to relate the techniques to a toning routine that is fantastic for core balance, thighs, bums and tummy muscles some girls really take to it infact I would go so far as to say its one of the most popular sessions we run, with the right coaching and someone to make it relative to your likes and needs it is a fantastic form of exercise and does tick an awful lot of the goals people come to us with.

Moving on thou, whilst half the group is giving myself and Ian a good dose of payback the other half are in their final nutrition workshop, asking questions and learning about the practical application of a healthy approach to eating.

Carsington Lake View

Carsington Lake View

After lunch it is time to go for a walk, it’s one of my favourites, Carsington reservoir, it’s an 8 mile walk around the reservoir with some beautiful views and an easily modifiable route so that it can be equally manageable yet challenging to any level of fitness or ability.

The weather is great the mood is even better and everyone is on a high, in one way or another, either they feel more energised and awake than before, or they are finally starting to de-stress and enjoy life a little or they’re simply feeling more confident and stronger for what they have achieved so far.

Today is a great day and just goes to show how the best training partner you will ever have, lives in your own head!

Enjoying Exercise and Workout at the Retreat | Weight Loss Boot Camp Report

Enjoying Exercise and Workout at the Retreat | Weight Loss Boot Camp Report

Today we have the pleasure of my high intensity interval training for the wake up workout, it’s a good session, very tough but ideal for this point in the week, more intensive means shorter bursts and rest periods more often so it is tough on the body but it doesn’t defeat the mind.

A lot of what stands in the way of our clients when it comes to exercise is the psychology, how they approach this new routine or lifestyle change will have humongous significance to whether they are able to maintain it or whether it gets pushed to one side the next time something gets in the way.

Exercise is not a chore! It is an enjoyable hobby or activity that primarily serves to improve mood, positively balance mental state of mind and increase confidence and inner strength. The reason people think of exercise as a chore is that they are doing it for the wrong reasons or they are doing the wrong type of exercise!

If you don’t believe that it’s possible, ask anyone of our thousands of previous clients who have left one of our intensive week realising that not only can they do extreme amounts of exercise but that with the right focus and approach they can enjoy themselves while doing it!

Today is proof of that, you take a group of people who up until this week haven’t done much if any exercise, especially not regularly and by the 5th day full of exercise they are not beaten and miserable, they are not incapable of moving (although stairs do prove to be a challenge!) in fact they are laughing, joking, still getting up at 6 in the morning to exercise and they have just absolutely owned a high intensity workout before breakfast and are still game for more!

To Anyone who doesn’t enjoy exercise.. Don’t give up! Just find the right group of people, the right instructor or the right reason and remember to focus more on what you achieve than what you fall short of.

Bonding with New Friends – Weight Loss Boot Camp Report – 1 Aug 2014

Bonding with New Friends – Weight Loss Boot Camp Report – 1 Aug 2014

Today has been a day of mixed emotions and a strange atmosphere, we usually have a group full of people who are exhausted and elated and absolutely ready to go home tomorrow, that is no different with this weeks group of lovely ladies, however there is a group of 9 of our lovely ladies who won’t be going home tomorrow and I think that is quite a daunting thought for them.

None the less the group have given it their all in everything today and by the end of presentations this evening it was quite the emotional day they have bonded really well this week and I think today it has hit home for the ladies leaving tomorrow that the support they have experienced on this week will not be all that surrounds them when they go home, but the group has been strong for each other this week and there is no reason that can’t continue.

One of the greatest things to come of these weeks is the continued support and the strong relationships built, if there is one tool that will help you succeed through to your goals it’s the support of your piers, on a final note from today, we the instructors have another 2 weeks straight through and thanks to the girls of this course we are in great shape for it, it’s been a real pleasure working with you and I look forward to keeping in touch and hearing about how well your doing.

Good luck girls :-)

Report from the Matlock Holistic Boot Camp – 24 July 2014

Report from the Matlock Holistic Boot Camp – 24 July 2014

Workout and Exercise. Photo Credit MouthsofMums.com.au

Today we have the pleasure of my high intensity interval training for the wake up workout, it’s a good session, very tough but ideal for this point in the week, more intensive means shorter bursts and rest periods more often so it is tough on the body but it doesn’t defeat the mind.

A lot of what stands in the way of our clients when it comes to exercise is the psychology, how they approach this new routine or lifestyle change will have humongous significance to whether they are able to maintain it or whether it gets pushed to one side the next time something gets in the way.

Exercise is not a chore! It is an enjoyable hobby or activity that primarily serves to improve mood, positively balance mental state of mind and increase confidence and inner strength. The reason people think of exercise as a chore is that they are doing it for the wrong reasons or they are doing the wrong type of exercise! If you don’t believe that it’s possible, ask anyone of our thousands of previous clients who have left one of our intensive week realising that not only can they do extreme amounts of exercise but that with the right focus and approach they can enjoy themselves while doing it!

Today is proof of that, you take a group of people who up until this week haven’t done much if any exercise, especially not regularly and by the 5th day full of exercise they are not beaten and miserable, they are not incapable of moving (although stairs do prove to be a challenge!) in fact they are laughing, joking, still getting up at 6 in the morning to exercise and they have just absolutely owned a high intensity workout before breakfast and are still game for more!

To Anyone who doesn’t enjoy exercise.. Don’t give up! Just find the right group of people, the right instructor or the right reason and remember to focus more on what you achieve than what you fall short of.

Report from the Matlock Holistic Boot Camp – 20 July 2014

Report from the Matlock Holistic Boot Camp – 20 July 2014

As always, today is jam packed with things to do, beginning with measurements and mentor sessions, but that’s as nice as it’s going to get, after breakfast the hard work begins with Zu’s introduction to exercise followed by our circuits class with a little extra and then yoga, all before lunch! After lunch the workload continues with boxing, interval training, abs and balls and a little stretch all before dinner.

The last class of the day is an introduction to resistance training with Ian. It’s the basics! Basic techniques, important teaching points and in a simple routine that will act as both a workout and an opportunity to gain a better understanding. This way those that need the technique get the help that they need and those that want a workout get the sweat they need! We are very proud of the fact that here at FitFarms, we are as much about understanding your own body and making informed decisions on your future healthier lifestyle as we are about enjoying the exercise and getting you nearer the end result your looking for.

This week is not going to be an easy one for us, the clients are all very happy and pleasant and seem very keen and jolly, but some are lacking in motivation, severely! But that’s why they’re here, and so we will do our very best to motivate and enthuse them during their stay but by the end of their course they will need to be feeling the benefits and feeling positive in order for them to maintain what they will of achieved through all their hard work. This way they will have proven to themselves how much they are capable of and they will be able to see how it feels to be fitter, fingers crossed for the rest of the week, today has been a good start, let’s just hope the energy and enthusiasm carries them through the week.

Red Lentil, Chickpea and Chilli Soup for Autumn At The Weight Loss Camp

Red Lentil, Chickpea and Chilli Soup for Autumn At The Weight Loss Camp

A Warm and Healthy Red Lentil, Chickpea and Chilli Soup for Autumn. Photo Credit Bubblews

The nights are drawing in and we start to think about those warming meals which may not be as healthy as we would like. But here is a very tasty and warm soup that you can mix and match the ingredients to suit your own tastes.

Red Lentil, Chickpea and Chilli Soup Ingredients

  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • large pinch chilli (flakes if possible)
  • 1 tbsp oil, olive oil is best
  • 1 red onion (seasonal vegetable), chopped
  • 140g red lentils, split
  • 850ml water or vegetable stock
  • 400g can tomatoes, can be chopped or whole
  • 200g of chickpeas, a carton or ½ a can, drain and rinse (leftovers can be frozen)
  • small bunch of roughly chopped coriander (save a few leaves to garnish)
  • 4 tbsp 0% Greek yoghurt, to serve

Technique

  • Heat a large saucepan and dry-fry the chilli flakes and cumin seeds for approximately 1 minute, or until they start to bounce around the pan and release the aroma.
  • Add the olive oil and red onion, and cook for 5 minutes.
  • Stir in the tomatoes, lentils, and stock, then bring to the boil.
  • Simmer for approximately 15 minutes until the lentils have softened.
  • Mix the soup with a food processor or a stick blender until it is a rough purée, pour back into the pan and add the chickpeas.
  • Heat gently, season and stir in the coriander.
  • Finish with a measure of yoghurt and sprinkle with coriander leaves.

This recipe only takes 10 minutes to prepare and 25 minutes to cook. There are sufficient ingredients to serve 4 people.
Let’s take a look at some of the ingredients and consider why those are in a healthy recipe as opposed to others.

Olive oil is considered a healthy fat as it is a monounsaturated fatty acid (MUFA). MUFAs have be credited with helping to reduce the risk of heart disease by lowering your cholesterol. Research is now starting to show that MUFAs help with maintaining blood sugar control, and therefore insulin levels. This blood sugar control is helpful if you suffer from Type 2 Diabetes. However, all fats should be used in moderation as they are high in calories.

Red and yellow onions are an excellent source of quercetin. This is a bioflavonoid that will scavenge cell damaging free radicals. Onions are rich in antioxidants that are anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial. Eating onions can help in suppressing rhinoviruses, the underlying cause of the common cold. Red onions contain allicin and this has been credited with promoting cardiovascular health, and preventing some cancers. Onions can be eaten cooked or raw, and counts towards our five-a-day.

Chickpeas have a nutty taste, and are high in protein and fibre. They also have a low glycemic index, an ideal combination to aid weight control. Chickpeas in your diet will help towards reducing heart disease through lower levels of cholesterol. Chickpeas are very versatile, and can be used in soups, as above, curries, salads, stews, and chilli’s. Chickpea flour is naturally gluten free, and can be used to make pakoras and pancakes. Chickpeas can even be used in baked goods as an egg substitute.

Yoga vs. Pilates: Which one is right for you?

Yoga vs. Pilates: Which one is right for you?

Pilates Workout. Photo Credit FitSugar

If you’re the type who doesn’t like doing all the cardio workout sessions and strength training workout programs but would still like to maintain a healthy fitness regimen, a holistic mind-body workout programs are more appropriate for you. Yoga and Pilates became popular among the health-conscious of us because of its power to make your body long and lean while promoting inner peace, a product of its “mindful movements”.

More often than not, Yoga and Pilates are being described in many comparable ways. True enough, they belong in the same practice but there are a lot of differences between the two. There are various types of Yoga and Pilates as well; as a result, they differ in many ways.

Mind-Body Approach. Both Yoga and Pilates focuses on how the mind and body are connected. They both establish this connection by introducing a calm workout environment, movements that help the practitioner relax and focus on poses and controlled breathing. While both establish the connection between the mind and body, Yoga throws one more feature into the mix – the spirit. Yoga endorses meditation with its proper breathing exercises that relieves stress and allows one to be calm. The mind-body-spirit connection is the foundation of Yoga.

Origin. Yoga originated from India more than 5,000 years ago. The practice evolved over the centuries and branched out into various types such as Ashtanga which involves synchronizing the breath with postures that produces internal heat that detoxifies muscles and organs, Vinyasa which is fast-paced as compared to other forms of yoga, Bikram which is ideally practiced in a heated room of 40°C with a humidity of 40%, and Kripalu which emphasizes “flowing the flow” of prana.

Pilates, on the other hand, is a much younger practice. It was developed by Joseph Pilates in the 1920s to rehabilitate injured soldiers from World War I. The art of dancing is what made Pilates popular; it uses various movements faster than Yoga’s to develop a graceful, fluid rhythm, similar to dancing. It has quickly gained a following among dancers all over the world.

Target Areas. While Yoga and Pilates use movements that are intertwined with breathing, each has specific target areas. Pilates is focused on the muscles of the abdominal wall and may help build abdominal strength by as much as 20% as its movements are centered on building core muscles. Yoga, on the other hand, is more focused on toning larger areas of the body other than the core. It targets legs, arms and abdomen as well due to its sun salutations and other poses.

So which is better for you? Practice Yoga if your goal is to achieve an overall balance of the mind, body and spirit. If you are aimed at enriching your lives, then Yoga is right for you with its breathing techniques that will help you relax and focus on your inner peace. It will help you manage stress and gain flexibility in one go. Practice Yoga if you want to achieve an overall toned body and if you would like to strengthen the larger sections of your body. It is recommended to those who has had their first heart attack, has high blood pressure or diabetes.

Pilates, however, is good if you’re a dancer or an athlete who wants to elevate your fitness program. If your primary goal is a solid core and a noticeable set of ab muscles, then Pilates is right for you. Pilates is designed for younger and more active practitioners.

Ditching the Elevator and Using the Stairs for Fitness

Ditching the Elevator and Using the Stairs for Fitness

Stairs for Fitness. Photo Credit RedBookMag

I just recently moved into a walk up apartment building. Living on the 10th floor, I always thought that the most convenient way to get up and down my flat was to take the elevator. While waiting for my ride, I noticed the usual signage posted near the lift doors saying “If you’re going up 2-3 floors, we recommend you take the stairs. It’s good for you.”

Seeing that I wasn’t in a hurry and that the lift was taking too long to get to the ground floor, I considered the suggestion and entered the stairwell. The ten floor challenge was on.

A few agonizing steps later, I found myself panting and literally crawling to my apartment door. After hydrating myself and getting some time to catch my breath, I vowed that conquering the ten floor walk up my apartment would be my next fitness challenge. I’d include walking up the stairs into my slowly growing fitness regimen.

Looking for a convenient workout that hardly costs any money and can be done throughout the year? Try stair climbing.

It’s convenient since most multi-storey buildings have elevators: schools, offices and even condominiums. Since the stairs are indoors you can easily climb them most of the year. You won’t have to postpone your workout even if it was raining or snowing outside. You won’t need any special equipment so there are no added costs. A good pair of running shoes and regular workout clothes are all you need.

Imagine all these benefits and I haven’t even begun to expound on the health and fitness part of the equation!

Research into stair climbing have documented its numerous health benefits: weight loss (in fact, studies have shown that you burn twice the fat in half the time than if you run); and muscle toning (not just of your lower body, but also of your arms, particularly if you use hand railings that help you pull your arms up). There is also the added benefit of less impact on your legs, ankles and knees. Other fitness benefits were validated through the two research presented below.

A study published in the journal Preventive Medicine monitored the health of 22 sedentary college-age women who began climbing stairs over the course of seven weeks. At the end of the study, researchers found that these women enjoyed better health outcomes in various categories: reduced heart rates, lower oxygen uptake and blood lactate levels.

Similarly, a Harvard Alumni Study discovered that men who averaged climbing at least eight flights a day enjoyed a 33% lower mortality rate compared to their sedentary counterparts. What is more amazing is that these findings are even better than the 22% lower mortality rate reported for men walking 1.3 miles a day.

Now I’m on my second week since adding stair climbing into my daily regimen. I’m happy to report that my endurance has improved considerably – I don’t pant as heavily as I used to. I’m a convert to this simple lifestyle adjustment and will continue to advocate it for other people interested in a low impact, affordable and all-weather fitness regimen that has proven medical and fitness benefits. I’d definitely advocate stair climbing for fitness!