How Much Sleep Do We Really Need? [Infographic]

How Much Sleep Do We Really Need?
Infographic from the National Sleep Foundation
Sleep is an essential component of good physical, mental and emotional health.

Yet, every night millions of people struggle with either falling asleep, staying asleep, or both.  Chronic insomnia and even brief periods of sleep deficiency has been linked to fatigue, poor memory, lack of energy and a host of illnesses.

It is also thought that lack of adequate, restorative sleep has a direct impact on weight gain - specifically the accumulation of visceral or belly fat.  It is also believed that being short on sleep impedes weight loss efforts.

Any weight loss expert will tell you that in order to lose or maintain a healthy weight, you need to get enough sleep.

But how much is enough sleep?  

There are some general guidelines based on age but individual sleep needs can vary because there is also a genetic component.

This infographic entitled How Much Sleep Do We Really Need? from the National Sleep Foundation illustrates and briefly explains:

✔ The average sleep needs for different age groups
✔ How sleep needs are also individual
✔ A few, key benefits of sleep
✔ Tips for better sleep

For more in-depth information on sleep health, including sleep recommendations, needs and debt, circadian rhythm, and sleep hygiene visit National Sleep Foundation - How Much Sleep Do We Really Need?  


How Sleep Aids in Natural Weight Loss
17 Science Based Hacks to Improve Sleep

A Guide to Antioxidant Rich Foods [Infographic]

A Guide to Antioxidant Rich Foods - Infographic from Health Perch 
Antioxidants are natural substances that are thought to prevent or delay certain types of cell damage.

Antioxidants can be man-made but are abundant in nature - plants are generally very good sources.  Some fruits, nuts, seeds and vegetables are considered to be exceptionally rich in antioxidants and other important nutrients.

Examples of antioxidants include Vitamins C and E, selenium, and carotenoids such as beta-carotene, lypocene and lutein.

Although there is good scientific evidence that antioxidants found in food are beneficial to health and in reducing the risk of certain chronic diseases, the science concerning antioxidant supplements is inconclusive.

Therefore, many holistic health professionals recommend that, to the extent possible, we get our daily dose of antioxidants from food.

This infographic, entitled A Guide to Antioxidant Rich Foods, highlights certain foods that are rich in antioxidants:

✔ Apples with Skin
✔ Dark Chocolate
✔ Dried Plums
✔ Red Wine
✔ Artichoke
✔ Pecans
✔ Blueberries
✔ Walnuts
✔ Strawberries
✔ Sweet Potato

This list is not inclusive.  Many other common and exotic fruits, vegetables, spices, herbs, nuts and seeds are also excellent sources of antioxidants.

Herbs and Spices Rich in Antioxidants

Infographic source and further information:  Roll Over Blueberry - A Guide to Antioxidant Rich Foods.

Vitamin B-17 - Best Food Sources
Top 10 Healthy Foods Rich in Vitamin C
Top 25 Vitamin E Rich Foods
Supplements vs. Food Visual Guide

To learn all about antioxidants, visit:  National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NIH) - Antioxidants: In Depth

Skeptic's Guide to Meditation [Infographic]

The Skeptic's Guide to Meditation
Infographic from Happify
Today, meditation is everywhere!

☯ Want to lose weight?  Meditate!
☯ Want to make more money?  Meditate!
☯ Want to overcome fears and phobias?  Meditate!

Meditation seems to be the answer for anything and everything.

Just go on any health, wellness, diet and exercise, spiritual or self-improvement website and you will soon discover that meditation and mindfulness is part of the program.

While meditation alone will probably not get you that bikini body or a brand new car, meditation and mindfulness practices have been extensively studied and shown to provide health benefits on many levels.

In spite of the science, however, many people are still skeptical.  If you are in the skeptic's camp, this infographic just might change your mind (and your life!)

This infographic entitled "The Skeptic's Guide to Meditation" was created by Happify Daily and Dan Harris, ABC News anchor and the author of 10% Happier.

The infographic illustrates and summarizes:

☯ The 4 Biggest Misconceptions About Meditation
☯ The Science of Meditation
☯ Why Mindfulness Matters
☯ The Basics of Meditation (Meditation 101)

For more information, to view a large image of the infographic or to buy it as a poster, go to Happify Daily - The Skeptic's Guide to Meditation.


What is Mindfulness Meditation?
The Body on Meditation
Meditation Styles
Breathing for Health

The Truth About Fat Loss - Free Online Summit

The Truth About Fat Loss - Free Online Summit
The Truth About Fat Loss Summit

In this free, online event, over 30 weight loss, health and wellness experts discuss the most effective ways to lose weight and keep it off.  Topics include different dietary approaches, hidden factors in weight gain, hormones, the role of stress, gluten and other food sensitivities, the psychology of weight loss, and the human microbiome.

The Summit is hosted by Jonny Bowden (the "Nutrition Myth Buster") and takes place online from Arpil 25 to May 2, 2016.

Disclosure:  we are NOT an affiliate nor receive any compensation for posting this link.

The Experts, Topics and Discussions:

Pedram Shojai, OMD The Urban Monk - Website
Life Hacks for the 21st Century
  • Who’s burning the fat?
  • Waking up to food is waking up to life
  • Weight loss and the Urban Monk 
Dave Asprey Best-selling Author and Creator of Bulletproof Coffee - Website
A High-Fat Diet for a Low-Fat Body
  • Why coffee is a health food
  • Secrets of a world-class biohacker
  • Everything you know about low-fat diets is wrong! 
Jimmy Smith, MS, CSCS - Website
The Secret of Success
  • Single biggest key to weight-loss success
  • The easy way to build confidence
  • Where should you start? 
Marcie Peters, Certified Holistic Health & Life Coach - Website
Aging Backwards
  • The 8 levels of transformation
  • How to talk to your inner critic
  • Happiness is YOUR choice 
Steven Masley, MD, FAHA, FAAFP, FACN, CNS, CCD - Website
The Smart Fat Program for Weight Loss
  • The problem with low-fat diets
  • A new definition of “good fat” and “bad fat”
  • Fiber and your waistline 
Eric Westman, MD MHS and Jimmy Moore Health Blogger and Radio Host - Website
Weight Loss on a Ketogenic Diet
  • Busting myths about cholesterol and fat
  • How to stop being a sugar-burner and start being a fat-burner
  • Ketosis: Truly a weight-loss “miracle”
Brian Mowll, DC, CDE, IFMCP Founder & Medical Director of SweetLife® - Website
Reversing Type II Diabetes
  • The functional medicine approach to diabetes
  • When low-carb diets aren’t enough
  • 3 supplements that help with blood sugar 
Dietitian Cassie, Registered & Licensed Dietitian CEO of Healthy Simple Life® - Website
The Unmaking of a Dietitian
  • Why eating more fat can change your life
  • The calorie myth
  • Hidden factors in weight gain 
Tom O’Bryan, DC, CCN, DACBN - Website
Gluten, Food Sensitivities, Hormones and Fat Loss
  • Food Sensitivities and weight gain
  • Single best exercise to balance your hormones
  • When staying in bed is better than exercising 
Daniel Amen, MD - Website
The Brain Warrior’s Way
  • Sex and the brain
  • Serotonin, mood and cravings
  • Artificial sweeteners and weight gain 
David Perlmutter, MD, FACN, ABIHM - Website
The Brain-Belly Connection
  • Is Alzheimer’s “Type 3 Diabetes?”
  • Does body fat create inflammation?
  • Gut health, grains and belly fat
Cynthia Pasquella Celebrity Nutritionist, Bestselling Author - Website
Transformational Nutrition
  • We know what to do, why don’t we do it?
  • 2 main keys to lasting changes
  • Discover what you’re REALLY hungry for! 
Marc David, MA - Website
The Psychology of Eating
  • Excess weight and sexual abuse
  • Toxic nutritional beliefs
  • The truth about food addiction
Elizabeth Lombardo, PhD - Website
The Psychology of Weight Loss
  • Simple trick to change your mood instantly
  • Stress and weight gain: A psychologist’s perspective
  • Never do these 2 things when stressed! 
Sayer Ji Founder & Director of GreenMedInfo - Website
What Research Really Tells Us About Weight Loss
  • Artificial sweeteners, weight gain and Splenda
  • Do supplements work for fat loss?
  • How coconut burns fat and stimulates metabolism 
Josh Axe, DNM, DC, CNS - Website
Hidden Causes of Weight-Loss Resistance
  • Fat-making bacteria (and what to do about them!)
  • How “ leaky gut” can make you fat
  • Can an inexpensive crock-pot change your life? 
Susanne Bennett, DC - Website
Energy, Weight Loss and the Mitochondria
  • Mitochondria: Essential for fat-burning and energy
  • Regenerating the mitochondria
  • Best supplements for energy 
Dan Kalish, DC - Website
How Toxins Make You Gain Weight (And What to Do About It!)
  • 3 things that make everybody fat
  • Toxins and weight gain
  • How toxins stimulate cravings 
Tami Meraglia, MD - Website
The Hormone Secret
  • Why testosterone matters to both sexes
  • The wrong solution: Exercising more and eating less
  • Learn the right way to detox (and why it matters!) 
Mira Calton, CN, FAAIM, DCCN, CMS, CPFC, BCIH and Jayson B. Calton, PhD, FAAIM, DCCN, CMS, CISSN, BCIH, ROHP - Website
The Hidden Reason You Gain Weight: Micronutrient Deficiency
  • Toxins and micronutrients
  • The 2 types of hunger
  • How nutrient deficiencies interfere with weight loss
Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS - Website
Banishing the Fear of Fat Forever
  • Omega-7: The unknown omega that helps with weight loss
  • Help balance hormones with evening primrose oil
  • How to “flush Fat” with cran-water 
Barry Sears, PhD - Website
The Hormonal Effect of Food
  • Do calories count? Yes, but...
  • The tryst between inflammation, insulin resistance and fat loss
  • 2 main drivers of inflammation 
Drew Canole Founder & CEO of FitLife TV - Website
From Fat to Fit
  • Habit-Stacking: The easiest way to change your life
  • How juicing can change your life (and your body!)
  • Lose fat while sleeping! 
Alan Christianson, NMD - Website
Healing Your Adrenals
  • Are you a sugar burner or a fat burner?
  • Inflammation, insulin and the thyroid
  • The amazing benefits of light therapy 
Anna Cabeca, MD Gynecologist, Obstetrician, Functional Medicine Expert - Website
The Truth About Acid-Alkaline
  • The keto-alkaline solution
  • Intermittent Fasting: Why both sexes need it!
  • Why the paleo diet is NOT for women 
Kellyann Petrucci, MS, ND - Website
Why the L.A. Lakers Drink Bone Broth
  • Weight-loss resistance and leaky gut
  • The #1 thing to throw out of your kitchen!
  • Bone broth and the miracle of collagen
John Rowley Bestselling Author & Fitness Expert - Website
The Physiology of Success
  • Addiction and weight loss
  • The secret to overcoming challenges
  • Simple trick to 10x your results! 
Jade Teta, ND - Website
What to Do When Diet and Exercise Stop Working
  • Should you restrict carbs or calories?
  • Simple exercise to turbocharge weight loss
  • 3 nutrients for men and women with low testosterone 
Sara Gottfried, MD - Website
Resetting Your Hormones
  • Insulin and estrogen dominance
  • Why very low-carb diets don’t work for women
  • Benefits of intermittent fasting for men and women 
Donna Gates, M.Ed, ABAAHP - Website
The Body Ecology Program
  • The truth about food combining
  • How toxins in your gut make you fat (and what to do!)
  • Yeast infections (candida) and weight gain 
Jonny Bowden, PhD, CNS - Website
Why Everything You Learned About Weight Loss Is Wrong!
  • Why the calorie theory is out of date
  • The role of hormones in weight loss
  • Why eating fat is your best strategy for losing weight 

Are Your Bad Habits Killing You? [Infographic]

Lifestyle and Health - Are Your Bad Habits Killing You?
Infographic from Life Insurance Finder
"I have bad genes!"

We used to think that our inherited genes dictated whether or not we would have certain health conditions or diseases.  But scientific studies indicate otherwise.

According to the research, most chronic diseases like diabetes, cancer, obesity and heart disease, are strongly influenced by our lifestyle.

In other words, our choices and habits play a key role in our health and whether or not we are at a higher risk for chronic disease and illness.

This infographic entitled "Are Your Bad Habits Slowly Killing You?" summarizes what we currently know about how lifestyle affects our health.

The Bad Habits

 Bad Posture
 Sitting Down All Day
 Eating Too Quickly
 Not Getting Enough Sleep
 Excessive Alcohol Consumption
Being a Loner
 Poor Diet (including eating too much red meat, not eating enough fresh fruit and vegetables and not getting enough dietary fiber)

The infographic also illustrates some choices and habits that are thought to have a positive effect on health:

Guilt-Free Pleasures

✔ Red Wine in Moderation
✔ Dark Chocolate
✔ Meditation
✔ Laughing
✔ Sex

Of course, other known healthy habits include engaging in regular exercise, staying properly hydrated and minimizing exposure to environmental chemicals.

Related:  How Dehydration Makes You Fat and Sick

Group Support and Coaching

Making lifestyle changes is not always easy.  However, it has been shown that group support can be very helpful.  Many online programs, forums and communities not only offer short-term and/or ongoing support but some also include free group coaching.  There is also the option of hiring a personal lifestyle coach if its within your budget.


Another good tool that is useful in making lifestyle changes is to keep a journal.  The journal acts as a record of your goals, your progress, your accomplishments and set-backs and is an excellent feedback tool.


Infographic source and for more information on this topic:  Life Insurance Finder - Kicking Bad Habits for a Longer Life

The World's Healthiest People

Fat in Your Diet Makes You Fat - Or Does It?

Nutrition 101 - Fats - Infographic from

Fat is not your enemy!

Fat is an essential nutrient.  It is essential to health.  It is essential to life.

Take a look at this infographic "Nutriton 101 - Fats" from MyFitnessPal.  It illustrates some basic facts about fats, including the sources of fat, the types of fat, and the role of fat in health and the diet.

Does Eating Fat Make You Fat?

Eating fat, in and of itself, does not directly make you fat.  You need to eat and store a certain amount of fat.

Eating too much fat can (and probably will) make you fat.  Just like eating too many carbs - consuming too much sugar, pasta and bread will make you fat.

Choosing wisely

Fat is not your enemy; it is your friend.  But, as with carbs, you have to choose your fats wisely. This means choosing healthy fats over unhealthy fats and consuming it in moderate amounts.

Its wise to remember that a gram of fat contains 9 calories.  A gram of carbohydrate or protein contains 4 calories.

Although metabolism is complicated and is influenced by many factors, the fact remains that fat has over two times the calories of carbs and proteins.

If you take in more calories than you burn, you will very likely gain weight.

So, you have to be cautious with the amount of fat you take in because the concentrated number of calories in fat can indirectly cause weight gain, leading to overweight and even obesity.

Although there are some general guidelines, exactly how many calories of fat or percentage of fat to include in your diet appears to be highly individual.  It depends on many factors including your current state of health, age, sex, activity level, stress levels, etc.

The BEST Diet

The "best" diet is a personalized diet based on your particular and unique physiology, psychology, lifestyle, goals (i.e., health, weight loss, weight gain, bikini body, etc.) and other factors and circumstances.

You can discover your "best" diet - the diet that is best for YOU -  by adapting a diet plan or program to your individual needs.  You can also discover your best diet through education, experimentation and paying attention to feedback loops.  Working with a registered dietitian or certified nutritionist is another option.

Health Benefits of Body Fat

Health Benefits of Body Fat [Infographic]

Health Benefits of Body Fat - 6 Ways Fat Can Help You
Infographic by Everyday Health
Historically, and until relatively recently in human evolution, fat was prized.  It was considered the richest, best and most valuable part of an animal.  In some religions, it was so precious that it was used spiritually.

Being plump was celebrated in many cultures throughout the world because it was a sign of wealth, success and abundance.

During the past 100 years, attitudes in the West have changed dramatically about fat and what being overweight signifies.  In modern times, fats have been vilified and the ideal has become slenderness.

While we now believe (based on the latest research) that obesity and excess belly fat increases the risk for certain chronic disease and cancer, we are also reminded that fat is one of six essential nutrients and performs critical functions in the body - as this infographic illustrates.

Infographic source:  6 Ways Body Fat Can Help You - Surprising Benefits of Body Fat - Everyday Health

Key Functions of Fat in the Body

✔ It provides stores of concentrated energy for muscles, tissues and metabolism
✔ It absorbs, stores and helps the body use fat-soluble vitamins and antioxidants
✔ It protects and cushions vital organs and bones
✔ It helps to maintain proper body temperature
✔ It aids in the regulation of the menstrual cycle

Healthy Oils Part I
Oils to Avoid and Oil Essentials
The Benefits of Vegetable Oil
Healthy Fats:  Cooking and Storing
Ranking of Common Cooking Fats
Fish Oil vs. Krill Oil
Best Omega-3 Foods

6 Health Nutrients for Better Health [Infographic]

6 Health Nutrients for Better Health - Infographic from
For optimum health, our bodies require a supply of proteins, vitamins and minerals.

When attempting to decide which is the healthiest diet or the best diet for weight loss, we tend to focus on primarily on three nutrients:  protein, fat and carbohydrate.

Compare 21 Popular Diets (Guide, Infographic)

However, optimal health also depends on our getting adequate amounts of clean water, vitamins and minerals.

When any of these needs are not met, we can develop a wide range of symptoms including:  low energy and fatigue, mood swings, headaches, confusion, nervousness, and muscle weakness.

Over time, chronic deficiencies are thought to contribute to a range of chronic diseases and illness.

When thinking about the healthiest or best diet, its important to look beyond the ratios of macronutrients (protein, fats and carbs).  All diet plans, programs and various food recommendations and choices also need to be evaluated for its micronutrient (vitamins, minerals and trace elements) content.

This infographic entitled "The Nutrient Color Palette" illustrates six health nutrients and some of the foods in which they are found that are needed for better health.

Health, wellness and fitness experts generally recommend eating a variety of unprocessed whole foods to ensure adequate intake of essential minerals, trace elements and vitamins.

Infographic source and more information:


Why You Need Water in Your Life [Infographics]

What Does Water Do For You?  Infographic from USGS
The human body is composed of approximately 55% to 65% water.

This varies depending on age, sex, and the amount of fatty tissue vs. lean muscle mass you have.

Babies and kids have more water than adults.

Men tend to have more water than women.

Individuals with a higher percentage of lean body mass have more water than those with more fatty tissue.

It is estimated that the human body needs approximately two quarts of fresh water per day.

The actual amount needed again depends on various factors - including age, weight, health status, activity level, and the climate where you live.  Thus, for example, a very active adult living in the desert will require significantly more water than a sedentary adult living in a cool climate.

Water is critical to human survival

  • Water is the major component of most body parts.  
  • Water forms saliva in the mouth, where digestion starts and then helps to convert food into compounds and components needed for survival.  
  • Water is needed by the brain to make neurotransmitters and hormones.  
  • Water helps to regulate body temperature through respiration and sweating.  
  • Water detoxifies the body by flushing out body waste - primarily through urine but also through perspiration.  
  • Water helps deliver oxygen to cells all over the body.

Chronic dehydration

Why You Need Water in Your Life
Infographic -
It is estimated that approximately 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated.  Chronic dehydration is implicated in many chronic diseases and illnesses and can present in a wide variety of symptoms including fatigue (loss of or low energy), constipation, high or low blood pressure, eczema and other skin conditions and pain (thought to result from the build up of toxins).

Dehydration, weight gain, obesity and weight loss
Why Dehydration Makes You Fat and Sick

It is estimated that about 37% of people mistake thirst for hunger, causing them to eat when they are not hungry and taking in extra calories.

Dehydration also puts the body into a state of drought, creating a strong stress response, and cutting down the energy supply to the brain, organs and body tissues.  In this state of stress, the body responds by mobilizing stress hormones, such as cortisol.  The connection between high circulating cortisol, weight gain and impeded weight loss efforts has been shown in many scientific studies.  This is why weight loss and wellness experts always advise people to drink adequate amounts of water - not only for general health but also to lose or maintain body weight.

These two infographics illustrate some of the key functions of water and show why its so essential to follow a daily regimen of adequate water intake.  For more information, visit:

What Does Water Do For You?  The Water in You - The USGS Water Science School
Why You Need Water in Your Life -

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