Holistic Fitness Wellness Health Land & Water!    




Posted on October 31, 2017 at 6:45 AM Comments comments (0)




A cardiologist determined that heart attacks can be triggered by dehydration. Good Thing To Know. From The Mayo Clinic. How many folks do you know who say they don't want to drink anything before going to bed because they'll have to get up during the night?



Heart Attack and Water - Drinking one glass of water before going to bed avoids stroke or heart attack. Interesting



Something else I didn't know ... I asked my Doctor why people need to urinate so much at night time. Answer from my Cardiac Doctor: Gravity holds water in the lower part of your body when you are upright (legs swell). When you lie down and the lower body (legs and etc.) seeks level with the kidneys, it is then that the kidneys remove the water because it is easier. I knew you need your minimum water to help flush the toxins out of your body, but this was news to me.



Correct time to drink water... Very Important. From A Cardiac Specialist!


Drinking water at a certain time maximizes its effectiveness on the body:


2 glasses of water after waking up - helps activate internal organs


1 glass of water 30 minutes before a meal - helps digestion


1 glass of water before taking a bath - helps lower blood pressure


1 glass of water before going to bed - avoids stroke or heart attack


I can also add to this... My Physician told me that water at bed time will also help prevent night time leg


cramps. Your leg muscles are seeking hydration when they cramp and wake you up with a Charlie Horse.



Mayo Clinic on Aspirin Dr. Virend Somers is a Cardiologist from the Mayo Clinic who is the lead author of the report in the July 29, 2008 issue of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. Most heart attacks occur in the day, generally between 6 A.M. and noon. Having one during the night, When the heart should be most at rest, means that something unusual happened. Somers and his colleagues have been working for a decade to show that sleep apnea is to blame.


1. If you take an aspirin or a baby aspirin once a day, take it at night. The Reason: Aspirin has a 24-hour "half-life"; therefore, if most heart attacks happen in the wee hours of the morning, the Aspirin would be strongest in your system.


2. Aspirin lasts a really long time in your medicine chest; for years. (when it gets old, it smells like vinegar).



Please read on.


Something that we can do to help ourselves - nice to know. Bayer is making crystal aspirin to dissolve instantly on the tongue. They work much faster than the tablets. Why keep Aspirin by your bedside?



It's about Heart Attacks -There are other symptoms of a heart attack, besides the pain on the left arm. One must also be aware of an intense pain on the chin, as well as nausea and lots of sweating; however, these symptoms may also occur less frequently. Note: There may be NO pain in the chest during a heart attack. The majority of people (about 60%) who had a heart attack during their sleep did not wake up. However, if it occurs, the chest pain may wake you up from your deep sleep. If that happens, immediately dissolve two aspirins in your mouth and swallow them with a bit of water. Afterwards: - Call 911. - Phone a neighbor or a family member who lives very close by. Say "heart attack!" - Say that you have taken 2 Aspirins. - Take a seat on a chair or sofa near the front door, and wait for their arrival and DO NOT LIE DOWN!



A Cardiologist has stated that if each person after receiving this e-mail, sends it to 10 people, probably one life could be saved! I have already shared this information. What about you?



Do forward this message. It may save lives!


"Life is a one-time gift" (Let's forward and hope this will help save some!)


Bodyweight Exercises part of your program

Posted on December 4, 2016 at 7:05 PM Comments comments (0)

Found an Article on Importance of Bodyweight Exercises

Originally appeared at jasonferruggia.com.


Bodyweight exercises need to be part of your program if you want to get jacked. But not just pushups, sit ups and high rep calisthenics. That’s beginner stuff that won’t build any real muscle.


We’re talking about really working hard on high tension, advanced bodyweight exercises that can only be done for somewhere between five and twelve reps, on average.


The nice thing about these is that they’re very natural and can usually be done pain free by most people.


Below is a list of my top 20 bodyweight exercises for size and strength.

I have listed belowwith my take on them as a women - see link for more https://www.onnit.com/academy/top-20-bodyweight-exercises-for-building-muscle-strength/?a_aid=holdfastiron&fhs=getonnit" target="_blank">details of each exercise.

1) Chin/ Pull Up - women are not as strong upper body many unable to do.

2) Rope Climb - a- nyone with arthritic fingers or poor hand grip will be limited

3) Inverted Row Lots of variations a bar, rings, ropes or suspension straps should be included for mid back thickness and strength. can be attained

4) Front Lever Did not describe the exercise not sure what to do.

5) Muscle - up - exercise is lift whole body up on a bar

6) Hand Stand push-up - begin learning to do a wall hand stand for 60 sec.  than move into push -up -  difficult or contraditory to wrist cconcerns

7) Push-Ups - many variation as all are not strong not only in hands & arm but core stabilizers  https://www.onnit.com/academy/top-20-bodyweight-exercises-for-building-muscle-strength/?a_aid=holdfastiron&fhs=getonnit" target="_blank">To see the rest go to link




Leading Edge Gym moving

Posted on September 21, 2016 at 2:45 PM Comments comments (0)

Leading Edge Gym is Moving !!


Leading Edge will be opening October 1 st in their new location inside the Sports Dome located on the CLE grounds.

Our new gym will feature an MMA cage , boxing ring , 12 station heavy bag rack, grappling mat , pro shop and a fully equipped fitness area perfect for all of your functional strength and conditioning needs . Leading Edge's experienced and dedicated coaching staff are offering classes in Boxing , Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Bang Muay Thai & Kickboxing ,Kids MMA and fitness, Self defence, group fitness classes ,fitness only memberships and personal training .

Call 355-0293 to set up a tour or to try out your first class. Many classes have limited enrolment so call soon.


Leading Edge Fall Schedule


Mon & Wed:


5:30pm - 6:30 pm - Kids MMA (12 kids max starts mid to late October)


5:30 pm – 6:30 Fighter fitness

6:30 pm – 7:30 Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (gi)

7:30 pm – 8:45 Boxing ( all levels)


Tues & Thurs:


9:30 am - 11am - Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu ( gi & no- gi )


5:30 pm – 6:30 Submission Wrestling / No-Gi BJJ

5:30pm- 6:30 - Fighter fitness/ Fundamental Boxing.

6:30 pm – 7:30 Bang Muay Thai kickboxing

** Our MMA program includes the no-gi and the Muay Thai program.

6:30 pm - 7:30 Essential BJJ for beginners

6:30 pm – 8:00 Self defence

7:30 pm – 9:00 Competitor training class / open mat (MMA , Boxing , Muay Thai kickboxing and BJJ)




Open Mat – 5:30pm-7 pm.




11:00 am – 12:30 pm Fighter Fitness and Boxing (all levels)

1pm – 2:30 BJJ (no-gi) Starts mid October.




11:00 am – 12:30 pm BJJ (gi)


Cold water Showers to refresh

Posted on September 12, 2016 at 10:55 AM Comments comments (0)


End your morning shower with 2-minutes of cold water. It’ll be tough the first couple times, but you’ll be amazed at how refreshing it becomes.

This was posted by

Michael DiCroce

https://www.linkedin.com/groups/99851/99851-6179634018603061248" target="_blank">Co-Creator of Awake and Alive

Thanks for the great post Michael would be refreshing.  I have always used cold water baths when I have injured myself.  The sooner the better 5 - 15 minutes and continue for 3 - 5 days depending on the injury.  It works, must have a tolerance for cold.  


Yoga should not hurt

Posted on September 11, 2016 at 3:15 PM Comments comments (0)


Important practice Yoga Without Discomfort

Great Article from  Sherri McMillan Business of PT

Yoga is a strengthening exercise that can also have calming and relaxing benefits. While Yoga is just that for many of our clients….it isn’t that way for all of them. Here is a question I received from one of my clients and my response. I thought this info would be helpful for you and your clients!


“I really love Yoga but it kills my wrists. Whenever my instructor brings us into Plank, Downward Dog, Upward Dog or Cobra while everyone else is finding their inner Zen, I am about ready to scream! What am I doing wrong?” G.D. Vancouver WA


Here is what I told my client:


“Surprisingly, you’re not alone!


Yoga, a program that is supposed to be gentler on the body and bring peace, calm and relaxation, for many people does the exact opposite.


Your ability to perform the below exercises without pain and discomfort, depends on a number of factors and with some yoga modifications you could practice yoga discomfort and pain free.




childspose  When first developing your muscular strength and endurance, your ability to hold many of these poses for very long will be limited. While the instructor may be cueing you to hold the pose for five or more breaths, your body may be at its limit at one or two breaths. It’s extremely important that you listen to your body and remember this – you know your body better than anyone. There’s a big difference between challenging yourself and pushing past your current limits. Find your point of challenge and then when you’ve had enough, move into a recovery pose like Child’s Pose. It will allow the opportunity for your muscles to relax and relieve some of the tension in your wrists. When you’re ready, you can join in again. After time, you’ll notice you can hold the poses for more breaths before finding it necessary to take a break.


Weight & Height


plank downdog cobra - If your instructor is 5 foot nothing and 100 pounds when soaking wet, it’s no wonder they can hold the poses for what seems like an eternity. The heavier you are, the harder the poses. So for a woman who is 120 pounds, holding a pose for 5 breaths, might be equivalent in intensity to a woman who is 160 pounds holding a pose for 2 breaths. It’s all relative. That goes for height as well. The taller you are, the longer your load and therefore the harder the poses. If you are heavier and taller, either hold your poses for shorter periods of time or look for ways to decrease the load on your muscles and joints. For example, for Plank, perform the pose from your knees versus your toes. For Downward Dog, bend your knees more. For Upward Dog/Cobra – allow your thighs to lightly rest on the floor.


Joint Structure


Each of the poses G.D. referred to above, put his wrists in a very extended position. Depending on joint structure (the size of your wrists, the way the bones align), some people have more issues than others. The good news is that each of the poses above can be done from an elbows position versus a wrist position which many people find a lot more comfortable.


Remember Yoga is all about the Mind/Body balance and it’s hard to find that balance when you’re fighting against your body. Listen to your body, progress gradually and celebrate the beauty of your uniqueness and your individual strengths”.


Yours in health, fitness & business,

Sherri McMillan

Giving the options always allows a wide variety of physical conditions such as arthritis, carpel tunnel etc. to be part of a yoga class


Never Do This Exercise... Plus: The 5 WORST Exercise Mistakes That Are Destroying Your Metabolism, Keeping You Flabby, Weak & Injury-Prone by Shin Ohtake, Fitness & Fat Loss Expert, Author of MAX Workouts

Posted on July 26, 2016 at 10:25 AM Comments comments (1)


Surprisingly, not all exercises are good for you. In fact, research has discovered that doing crunches, sit-ups and other ab-targeted exercises will NOT help you get flat, washboard abs.


The problem is when you do conventional ab exercises, your stomach muscles feel sore, which fools you into thinking that you’re working your abs. Yet, after weeks of religiously doing your ab routine, your belly looks just as bloated and soft as it did before. All that time and pain for nothing!


Here’s the TRUTH…


Crunches, sit-ups, side bends (and other common ab exercises) force you to bend and contort your body in unnatural ways. This may come as a surprise, but your abs were NOT designed to crunch, twist, or bend. In fact, it’s the complete opposite!


The real role of your abdominal muscles is to PREVENT your mid-section from crunching, twisting, and bending. That’s right, your abs are a stabilizing force designed to resist movement in order to protect your spine.


So even though you “feel the burn” when you do crunches and sit-ups, you’re actually putting unnecessary pressure on your back, causing more harm than good. These ab exercises can cause lower back injuries by forcing your spine to bend too much, and they do very little to actually help you get a flat, tight stomach.


The key to getting sculpted abs is to burn off that stubborn layer of belly fat that’s hiding them. On the next page, I’ll show you how to quickly burn away the “ab flab” so you can finally carve out those lean, ripped abs.


But first, here are the 5 WORST exercise mistakes you MUST stop making (if you want to crank up your metabolism so you can melt away stubborn body fat and KEEP it off)...

Mistake #1: Doing Long Bouts of Cardio

If you’ve been doing cardio workouts to try and slim down, I have some alarming news…


Steady-state cardio (like jogging or doing the elliptical) increases the production of a stress hormone called cortisol. Cortisol causes weight gain and makes it more difficult to burn off stubborn belly fat.


That’s why no matter how much cardio you do, you can’t seem to raise your metabolism and you always hit a plateau eventually.


Even worse, too much cardio accelerates aging! When you put your body under prolonged stress, you start producing free-radicals, which damages your cells and causes inflammation…and inflammation is what makes you OLD. Yikes!


But, there is a RIGHT way to do cardio. Stick with me because I’m going to reveal what you can do to get insane results in half the time of your regular cardio workout—without causing unnecessary stress on your joints. (Once you learn this simple trick, you’ll kick yourself for not doing it all along!)

Mistake #2: Doing Isolated Exercises

Doing isolated exercises (like bicep curls and tricep extensions) will NOT help you build lean muscle and get toned & fit. When you do these “isolated” exercises, you’re only working one muscle at a time. The problem is that these exercises do very little to increase your metabolism.


Here’s why: In order to boost your metabolism, your heart rate has to be raised to a certain level. But when you’re only working ONE muscle at a time, it’s virtually impossible to recruit enough muscle fibers to increase your heart rate significantly, so you’ll never be able to spike your metabolism or maximize your calorie burn.


If you want to slim down and tone up fast, you need to do exercises that stimulate as many muscles as possible at the same time.

Mistake #3: Using Gym Machines

Those big, shiny machines sure make the gym look high-end, but truthfully, the only thing they’re good for is for sitting down while you tie your shoes or catch your breath!


The problem is this: Machines alter the way your body naturally moves, restricting your range of motion. This severely limits your ability to fully activate all of your muscles fibers, which means less fat burning and less muscle toning.


Worse yet, machines can cause muscular imbalance and excessive strain on your joints, leading to nagging injuries down the road.


If you want fast results, you MUST incorporate exercises that allow your body to move naturally with full range of motion so you can skyrocket your metabolism and put fat-burning on autopilot.

Mistake #4: Repeating The Same Workouts Over & Over

Repeating the same workout routine over and over is a surefire way to STOP getting results. We’re creatures of habit and we tend to stick to things we’re familiar with and good at. But when it comes to working out, if you want to make progress and keep seeing changes in your body, you’ve got to start switching things up.


You see, your body has an amazingly ability to adapt quickly and when it does, that’s when you hit the dreaded plateau and you STOP making progress.

Mistake #5: Doing Loooong Workouts

Longer workouts do NOT equal better or faster results. If you’ve been slaving away at the gym and your body isn’t visibly changing, you can’t do more of the same thing and expect a different result.


When it comes to getting lean and fit, your body responds to quality over quantity. I’m going to tell you the #1 way to super-charge your workouts—this simple, yet overlooked method is the single fastest way to getting lean and ripped while cutting your workout time almost in half. This technique will open up a can of whoop-ass on your workout!

How To “Fix” Your Metabolism

Alright, now that you know what NOT to do, here’s the good news…


Science has proven that there are specific types of exercises that trigger a potent fat-burning effect, which skyrockets your metabolism and boosts your fat-burn for up to 48 hours after your workout is over.


These exercises activate more of your muscle fibers, which creates a bigger metabolic boost, demanding more fat to be burned for fuel—so you can burn off the fat and KEEP it off.


There’s even more good news…


These exercises also stimulate your youth-enhancing hormones so you can slough away old, dead cells — making you look and feel years younger!


Listen: getting a lean, defined body with a rock-solid core is easy once you know HOW to trigger the right hormones in your body (and stop the production of the bad hormones that are making you fat and old).

Learn more from the author by Shin Ohtake, Fitness & Fat Loss Expert, Author of MAX Workouts

The 5 Best Most Effective Abdominal Exercises

1) Hanging Leg-Raises: A strenuous exercise, the hanging leg raise is a product of true gymnasts. All you need is a chin-up bar or equivalent setup. Grab the bar with an overhand grip about shoulder width apart, and while bending your knees raise your hips and curl your back as you bring your thighs to your chest. Lower slowly, and repeat.


2) Fat-Bar Holds: Again with a chin-up bar or equivalent, hold onto the bar with an overhand grip and hang with your arms and body completely straight. Hang for as long as possible until you can't hold on any longer, then rest for a minute and repeat. Remember you want to improve your strength, so aim to hang for a longer amount of time during each rep.



3) Overhead Reverse Lunge: All you need for this exercise is a light barbell or long wooden pole or equivalent. Hold the bar high above your head with arms straight, and step backward with one leg and slowly lower your body until your knee is bent at a right angle. Do multiple sets of 15-20 reps with rests in between.


4) Leg Raises: While lying on your back extend your legs and raise them off the floor to the highest degree while keeps your knees only slightly bent. Slowly bring your legs back down towards the ground, at about 6 inches from the ground, curl your legs towards your chest. Repeat 15-20 times.


5) Planks: While in push-up position, bring your arms in close to your chest, elbows tucked in and fists up near your face. Raise your body up off the ground and maintain a straight "plank-like" posture for 60 seconds. Only your toes and forearms should be touching the ground. After each rep, switch positions. Flip over and have your back towards the ground and chest pointing skyward, again only your feet and forearms should be touching. Keep your back straight and hold position for 60 seconds.

All these exercises are for those who frequent the GYM 


6 ways to banish anxiety from your life

Posted on June 14, 2016 at 7:20 AM Comments comments (0)

Do you feel nervous over the slightest thing and struggle to deal with certain situations?

Clammy palms, pounding heart or feeling dizzy?


These can be common signs of anxiety, but often stress and anxiety are not clearly distinguished.


Stress is a response to what appears to be a threat in a situation and the anxiety is a reaction to this.


Experts say anxiety is characterised by impatience, poor concentration, a feeling of helplessness, irritability, being tense and restless.


Other symptoms which are more severe could include chest tightness, indigestion, dry mouth, fatigue, sweating and headache.

Below are a few tips on how to tame anxiety;



Caffeine is a stimulant, which prompts your body to release the stress hormones making you feel more stressed and on edge than you should be.

furthermore, caffeine is addictive, tea and coffee act like a drug.


Leading nutritionist Dr Marilyn Glenville, author of Natural Alternatives to Sugar, said: ‘As the effect of the caffeine wears off, you will want another one and then you are back on that roller coaster again of highs and lows, exactly like the highs and lows of blood sugar.


‘If you add sugar to the tea or coffee the roller coaster highs will be higher and the lows lower making you feel even more stressed.

‘Because caffeine acts like a drug, you wouldn’t be advised to stop suddenly and go ‘cold turkey’ because you could experience quite dramatic withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, nausea, tiredness, muscle cramps and depression.’


Work out what’s important


If you feel the symptoms of stress coming on, learn to get your priorities right. There is nothing in your life right now more important than your health, Dr Glenville stresses. ‘Learn to say no if you feel that you have taken on too much,’ she said. ‘Being assertive is invigorating and empowering. ‘It also helps to make lists of what is or is not a priority and to tackle the priority tasks first. This will help give you a sense of control over your life.’


Increase your ‘feel good’ hormone


We need to make sure that our levels of serotonin (the ‘feel good’ hormone) remain high. And, a simple change of diet can work wonders says Dr Glenville. She explains: ‘The body makes serotonin from tryptophan, which occurs naturally in foods such as dairy products, fish, bananas, dried dates, soya, almonds and peanuts.


‘Combining the foods mentioned above with unrefined carbohydrates, such as brown rice, wholemeal bread or oats, helps the body to release insulin to help tryptophan uptake to the brain.


Steady your sugar levels


An essential part of combating stress is to balance your blood sugar levels. Sugar crashes, which can happen throughout the day due to long periods without food and not eating the right foods, stimulates the stress hormones adrenaline and cortisol to be released. Dr Glenville explained: ‘This is because these stress hormones, apart from helping you to run away from a tiger, can also mobilise your glucose - which has been stored as glycogen in the liver - back into the blood stream. ‘This is why you can feel more jittery, irritable etc when blood sugar plummets.’ She advises ensuring you have a small meal every two to three hours that contains protein.

Up your fish intake


Almost 60 per cent of our brains are made up of fat, nutritionist Cassandra Barns explains. About half of that fat is DHA omega 3 fatty acides, which are found in abundance in fish. Hence why fish is often referred to as a great source of ‘brain food’. ‘Omega 3 are known as “essential” fats because our bodies do not make these so we must rely on eternal sources for these nutrients, such as eating oily fish, or taking a supplement,’ Ms Barns said.


Get a good nights’ sleep


Many of us experience feelings of pressure, tension, and nervousness., especially after a busy and stressful day and these feelings can feel more prominent at bedtime. Sleep is a significant part of living a healthy lifestyle, and many of us simply do not get enough. Martina Della Vedova, nutritionist at Nature’s Plus UK says: ‘If we don’t get enough sleep we can find it harder to adapt to challenging situations, and when we can’t cope as efficiently with stress it can be harder to have a good night’s rest.

read more

Importance of Exercise & hydration

Posted on April 3, 2016 at 5:45 AM Comments comments (0)



Exercise may slow down the brain's aging by 10 years

Long-term observational study shows that cognitive abilities are maintained longer by adults who practice regular physical exercise.



Drinking More Water May Help Your Diet

New reseasrch finds that drinking just 1 per cent more water can reduce total daily calorie consumption, in particular the intake of sugar, sodium and cholesterol.



Exercise May Extend Lives of People With COPD

Any amount of moderate to vigorous physical activity can reduce the risk of dying after hospitalization for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, says Harvard study.


The most effective Chest, Back, Shoulder, Legs and Arms Building Exercises

Posted on March 6, 2016 at 8:35 PM Comments comments (0)

Sharing this article on best exercises by muscle group.  See link at bottom .

5 Most Effective Chest Building Exercises


Bench Press. The king of all upper body muscle building movements. The bench press is so popular that it is often seen as having it's own training day - bench press Monday.


Incline Bench Press. The first choice of many top pro bodybuilders.


Dips. Once considered the upper body squat, dips are a great compliment to any bench press movement.


Dumbbell Bench Press. You will really be able to feel the chest work with this pressing variation.


Incline Dumbbell Bench Press. A solid alternative to the incline barbell press.


5 Most Effective Back Building Exercises


Deadlifts. Nothing builds beefy backs like the deadlift. The sheer act of holding a barbell with heavy weight places the lats under an incredible amount of stress.


Pull Ups. A far superior choice to lat pull downs. If you can do one, try for two. If you can do two, try for three! If you can't do them at all use rack chins.


Barbell Row. No back building workout should be without a heavy row, and barbell rows are at the top of the list.


Dumbbell Row. An excellent second choice to barbell rows, especially if you have a weak lower back.


Power Clean. The explosiveness of the power clean effectively works the back from traps down.


5 Most Effective Back Building Exercises


Deadlifts. Nothing builds beefy backs like the deadlift. The sheer act of holding a barbell with heavy weight places the lats under an incredible amount of stress.


Pull Ups. A far superior choice to lat pull downs. If you can do one, try for two. If you can do two, try for three! If you can't do them at all use rack chins.


Barbell Row. No back building workout should be without a heavy row, and barbell rows are at the top of the list.


Dumbbell Row. An excellent second choice to barbell rows, especially if you have a weak lower back.


Power Clean. The explosiveness of the power clean effectively works the back from traps down.


5 Most Effective Shoulder Building Exercises


Military Press. This exercise has been a staple of great workouts for decades on end.


Push Press. Very similar to the military press, but utilizing more of an Olympic lifting-style explosiveness.


Bench Press. Yes, you read that correctly. The bench press is an amazing front delt builder. In fact, if your chest day involves several pressing movements there's a good chance you won't need any direct front delt work on shoulder day.


Seated Behind The Neck Press. Go no deeper than arms perpendicular to the floor, and this is a rock solid choice.


Seated Dumbbell Press. A little easier on the shoulders for many because the dumbbells can be placed in a more natural position.


5 Most Effective Leg Building Exercises


Squats. The king of all muscle building lifts. 'Nuff said.


Front Squats. Another top choice of bodybuilding beef kings. Front squats can be tricky to learn, but you will be rewarded with big wheels.


Stiff Leg Deadlifts. Beef up your hamstrings!


Leg Press. If you don't have access to a squat rack this is your next best bet.


Barbell Lunge. Lunges are another quality leg-building staple.


5 Most Effective Arm Building Exercises


Chin Ups. A shocker, but chin ups (performed with palms toward the face) are a beastly bicep builder, perhaps even better than straight bar curls.


Close Grip Bench Press. This exercise allows for a heavy amount of weight to be placed on the triceps.


Dips. Much better than most tricep isolation exercises.


Barbell Curls. A classic. Just don't curl in the squat rack.


Seated Two Arm Dumbbell Tricep Extension. Allows you to lift heavy weight and reach a deep stretch. You will need a good spotter.





Thunder Bay FIT together

Posted on February 19, 2016 at 7:10 AM Comments comments (0)

Be a part of a positve change!

Share your views in an survey until March 1 thunderbay.ca/fittogether

Marketing weekly

Posted on December 27, 2015 at 4:25 PM Comments comments (0)

For now here are our weekly features for the weekdays.

Marketing Monday - what are you doing for marketing efforts this week? Terrific

Tuesday - who or what would you like to give a shout out to? A person, business, product, service, kind act etc. Website

Wednesday's - share your website(s).

Thursdays are Tip day. Offer a tip about social media marketing or share your success stories

Friday is Facebook Page Friday - share your pages!

Saturday is Shop Saturdays so be sure to promote a product, service or special you are offering!

Sunday is Inspiration/Invitation Sunday's. Share something that is inspiring/motivational/ etc.

And/Or invite someone new to the page


and introduce them to the group! TEAM = Together Everyone Achieves More!

And everyday is a good day for sharing anything to do to help with Social Media Marketing and Marketing in General.

This would be tips, success stories, shout out's, articles, webinars and anything that is helpful to our mission.

You can also post about fundraising events, networking events/groups, questions, ideas, motivation, on any given day, just do not promote your business if the "THEME" does not allow for it.

Thanks to the Author Maggie Holbik


I'm going to start today! 

Strong Hips = Strong Knees. Weak Hips = Weak Knees

Posted on October 9, 2015 at 7:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Do your clients know that if their hips aren’t stable and effectively able to stabilize their pelvis while walking, running or playing sports, their knees will suffer?




Strong Hips = Strong Knees. Weak Hips = Weak Knees


Here’s some tips you can share with your clients on conditioning hips in a variety of ways. These exercises really work when performed 2-3 days per week on alternating days. Share with your clients!


Leg Step Up


Holding a set of hand weights, position yourself in front of a bench with one foot on the bench. The bench should be at a height that puts your knee at a 90 degree angle. Keep your kneecap facing forward and your weight distributed on all four corners of your foot. Now slowly step up extending the supporting knee into a fully upright, balanced position. Now slowly lower yourself down to the starting position. Perform 1-2 sets of 8-12 reps to fatigue for each leg. Keep the height shorter if this bothers your knees at all.trans Strong Hips Help Keep Strong Knees


TD HanddrawnArrows4 300x285 Strong Hips Help Keep Strong Knees



Don’t forget to sign up to automatically be notified when I publish a new blog post!

Right up here.


Resisted Lateral Steps


Wrap a resistance tube (exercise cuffs) around your ankles. Standing tall with abdominals tight, slowly step side to side maintaining resistance on the tube. Continue for 1-2 minutes.


hamstringcurl1b Strong Hips Help Keep Strong KneesStability Ball Hamstring Curls


Lay on your back with your feet positioned on an exercise ball. With your arms at your side, slowly lift your hips and buttocks up towards the ceiling while contracting your glutes (buttocks) and hamstrings (back of thigh) until your body weight is resting comfortably on your shoulder blades. Throughout the entire exercise, be sure to keep your hips square to the ceiling and your abdominals contracted. Now slowly curl the ball in towards your body while maintaining control and stability through your core area. Slowly curl out and in 8-20x for one to two sets. Feel free to take breaks as needed.


Leg Bridging


bridgec Strong Hips Help Keep Strong Knees


Lay on your back with 1 leg bent, foot on the floor and the other leg lifted straight up to the ceiling. With your arms at your side, slowly lift your hips and buttocks up towards the ceiling while contracting your glutes (buttocks) and hamstrings (back of thigh) until your body weight is resting comfortably on your shoulder blades. Throughout the entire exercise, be sure to keep your hips square to the ceiling and your abdominals contracted. Be sure not to tilt to one side while doing these 1-leg lifts. Slowly lift up and down 8-20x for 1-2 sets.


Side Lying Outer Thigh Leg Lifts


Lie on your side with your body straight. Keep you abdominals contracted as you lift the top leg upwards. Hold at the upper end range of motion and then return to the starting position. Complete 1-2 sets of 8-20 reps each leg. If this is too easy, perform this exercise with tubing wrapped around your ankles to increase the resistance.


Yours in health and fitness,

Sherri McMillan see her blog for more




Thunder Bay's "PEACE POLE" Everyone Welcom

Posted on September 18, 2015 at 4:00 PM Comments comments (0)










11:30 to 12 NOON



In keeping with Rotary’s mandate of promoting global peace the three Rotary Clubs of Thunder Bay have installed a Peace Pole. It is one of 200,000 planted worldwide. The Peace Pole has been inscribed with “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in English, French and Ojibway. The site of Thunder Bay’s Peace Pole overlooks our amazing Sleeping Giant at Prince Arthur’s Landing.


Along with the Peace Pole a commemorative plaque has also been installed and is inscribed - “With Mutual Respect – We Live With Others in Peace”. We hope that these wonderful symbols will strengthen the ideals of peace within and among all nations and peoples worldwide and in our own community.


Worldwide peace is celebrated on September 21st - which is the UN International Day of Peace. This serves as a reminder to all peoples to reflect and encourage all mankind to work in cooperation for the global goal of peace.


The Rotary Clubs of Thunder Bay will hold their third annual Peace Day Ceremony on September 19th, 2015 from11:30.am to noon at our Peace Pole located on Saul Laskin Drive at our marina. (Just above the band shell). We are planning a multicultural event and would like to invite the community of Thunder Bay to come and join us. There will be Aboriginal and French representation as well as individuals in their national dress. Flags of all nations will be flying!

What an exciting event that represents and teaches peace!

We would love to see you there!


Amazing Frozen Lemons

Posted on September 7, 2015 at 7:40 AM Comments comments (0)


Read this

– it may save your life or the life of a friend or loved one. The more you read, the more you want to know… it’s not long, so, read it. It’s amazing!



Amazing frozen lemons


All it is.....is a frozen lemon.



Many professionals in restaurants and eateries are using or consuming the entire lemon and nothing is wasted. How can you use the whole lemon without waste?

Simple.. place the washed lemon in the freezer section of your refrigerator. Once the lemon is frozen, get your

grater, and shred the whole lemon (no need to peel it) and sprinkle it on top of your foods.


Sprinkle it to your vegetable salad, ice cream, soup,

cereals, noodles, spaghetti sauce, rice, sushi, fish dishes, whisky... the list is endless.


All of the foods will unexpectedly have a wonderful taste, something that you may have never tasted before. Most

likely, you only think of lemon juice and vitamin C. Not anymore.



Now that you've learned this lemon secret, you can use lemon even in instant cup noodles.


What's the major advantage of using the whole lemon other than preventing waste and adding new taste to your dishes?



Well, you see lemon peels contain as much as 5 to 10 times more vitamins than the lemon juice itself.

And yes, that's what you've been wasting.



But from now on, by following this simple procedure of freezing the whole lemon, then grating it on top of your dishes, you can consume all of those nutrients and get even healthier.


It's also good that lemon peels are health rejuvenators in eradicating toxic elements in the body.


So place your washed lemon in your freezer, and then grate it on your meal every day. It is a key to make your foods tastier and you get to live healthier and longer! That's the lemon secret! Better late than never, right?



The surprising benefits of lemon!


Lemon (Citrus) is a miraculous product to kill cancer cells. It is 10,000 times stronger than chemotherapy.


Why do we not know about that? Because there are laboratories interested in making a synthetic version that will bring them huge profits.


You can now help a friend in need by letting him/her know that lemon juice is beneficial in preventing the disease. Its taste is pleasant and it does not produce the horrific effects of chemotherapy.


How many people will die while this closely guarded secret is kept, so as not to jeopardize the beneficial multimillionaires large corporations?


As you know, the lemon tree is known for its varieties of lemons and limes.


You can eat the fruit in different ways: you can eat the pulp, juice press, prepare drinks, sorbets, pastries, etc... It is credited with many virtues, but the most interesting is the effect it produces on cysts and tumors.


This plant is a proven remedy against cancers of all types. Some say it is very useful in all variants of cancer. It is considered also as an antimicrobial spectrum against bacterial infections and fungi, effective against internal parasites and worms, it regulates blood pressure which is too high and an antidepressant, combats stress and nervous disorders.


The source of this information is fascinating: it comes from one of the largest drug manufacturers in the world, says that after more than 20 laboratory tests since 1970, the extracts revealed that it destroys the malignant cells in 12 cancers, including colon, breast, prostate, lung and pancreas..


The compounds of this tree showed 10,000 times better than the product Adriamycin, a drug normally used chemotherapeutic in the world, slowing the growth of cancer cells.


And what is even more astonishing: this type of therapy with lemon extract only destroys malignant cancer cells and it does not affect healthy cells.


So, give those lemons a good wash, freeze them and grate them. Your whole body will love you for it

For Better  Health

10 Health Benefits of Celtic Sea Salt

Posted on August 30, 2015 at 10:00 AM Comments comments (0)

10 Key Health Benefits of Celtic Sea Salt


Natural salt is the element that helps to regulate water content in the body. The balance of water and salt in the body is critical.


Another key reason why natural salt is so important is because our bodies need trace elements for proper function. These elements are usually not found in food or nutritional supplements in a form that the body can utilize.


However, all 82 of the essential trace elements needed by the body are found in natural unrefined sea salt and are in a bio-available form.


In general, natural sea salt helps to balance the entire body. Some of the more pronounced benefits include the following:


Regulates heartbeat and blood pressure. Even though refined salt can cause high blood pressure, natural salt with adequate water intake can help to stabilize irregular heartbeats and normalize blood pressure. In other words, if you have low blood pressure, taking Celtic sea salt can help to raise it. If you have high blood pressure, it can help to lower it.

Eliminates mucus buildup. Not only does this salt help to eliminate existing mucus buildup, but it will help to prevent it. This benefit makes it very helpful for people with allergies, asthma, sinus issues, or bronchial congestion.

Improves brain function. Sea salt is vital to the health of nerve cells and their ability to communicate and process information. This salt also helps to extract excess acidity and toxins from brain cells.

Balances blood sugars. Celtic sea salt is especially helpful for diabetics because it helps to balance blood sugars.

Alkalizes the body. Excess acidity in the body is an underlying cause of many diseases. Salt is vital to the removal of excess acid wastes from the cells. In addition, mineral rich salt will help to maintain the optimal acid-alkaline balance.

Increases energy. Salt and water are the key elements for the generation of hydroelectric energy in the cells. When sodium and trace minerals are deficient in the body, fatigue will set in.

Provides electrolyte balance. Natural Celtic salt will help keep the electrolyte minerals in your body balanced, releasing excess sodium and water. For problems with water retention, gradual sea salt intake can help to release excess water stored in body tissue.

Builds immunity. Regular intake of natural sea salt and its highly absorptive minerals can give you a higher resistance to illness, infections, and disease. It can also help your body to heal faster after an injury or surgery.

Promotes restful sleep. The abundance of trace minerals in natural sea salt will have a calming effect on the entire nervous system. In addition, the proper ratio of water and salt consumption can help to prevent the need to urinate during the night.

Prevents muscle cramps. Muscle cramps are often caused by an electrolyte imbalance, especially a lack of sodium. Celtic sea salt provides these minerals in the correct proportion. Your body will take what it needs and get rid of the rest, as long as you are drinking enough water.

Find more informaiton at http://www.waterbenefitshealth.com/celtic-sea-salt.html

Check with you doctor to see if salt in any form is good for you as we are all different.

Have a greata day.  Anne

Not putting in the 7 pounds during the Holidays

Posted on August 26, 2015 at 6:30 AM Comments comments (0)

The average person puttings on 7 pounds during the holidays.  Goal not to do this this year!

When we do our best to follow our routines we had before Christmas by our eatting & exercise habits we would succeed. 


Christmas is a time where family comes together & or many gatherings with friends and food is in aboundance and our exercise routines may change for a few weeks.

Found this information of a website I am sharing so struggles with Christmas weight gain will stop.

First - there are choices we can make so this is easy and you can feel better .  Combinations of fats, proteins

1.  OJ - orange juice and other concentrated juices grapefruit, crandberry and others has excess sugar & looses a lot of the fibre we get from eating fruit!

2.  Margerine (transfats not good and is often artificia)l - butter is better in modification is a Saturated fat)

3. Wheat - whole wheat bread, pancakes, pies, pastas - high carbs is comfort foods - Eat in modification less is better & combine with proteins.

4. Process Soy products - are highly processed with little nutritional value.  Eat more whole foods.

5.Corn genetically modified GM Corn - often hidden in breads, cereals, yogurt and so many more.  - Read labels. Plan a full week of meal ahead of time what you want to eat than you can prepare so you are not going to get the products you don't need.

To learn more & better understand the reason why?  http://www.introduce.trimdownclub.com/aboutms.html?prm2=m2&add=1

Will power is within you.  Be responsible! Be Happy!

Merry Christmas to All


Common problems for Runners

Posted on July 6, 2015 at 4:05 PM Comments comments (0)

Common Problems for Runners

Lance Armstrong might not let a shattered collarbone keep him from his Tour de France training, but most of us are slower to bounce back when injury strikes. The trick is knowing the right way to rehab. "Too often, a minor injury becomes a major bump in women's fitness routines," says Vonda Wright, MD, a sports medicine surgeon at the University of Pittsburgh and a FITNESS advisory board member. What's the best way to get back in the game? (Hint: It isn't always about speed-dialing your doc.) We asked the experts for tips on how to tackle the most common exercise aches and pains yourself.


Common Problem for Runners: Heel and Sole Tightness


What hurts?


The sole of your foot and heel are tight and tender.


Here's why: With overuse, the connective tissue that runs the length of your sole can become inflamed or suffer microscopic tears. Known as plantar fasciitis, it usually feels worse early in the morning, better during exercise, and painful once you stop.


Feel better: Sit in a chair and place a cold can of soda on its side on the floor in front of you, says Christopher John Anselmi Jr., a chiropractor at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City. Put your foot on top of the can and, applying medium pressure, roll it back and forth. The cold will reduce swelling while the massage eases the pain.


Your new game plan: Buy shoes with arch support; women with high arches are especially prone to this injury. And cut down the mileage until your foot feels better (try a nonimpact cardio activity, like swimming, instead).


Self-Massage Tip!


Always stroke in the direction of the heart to prevent blood from being pushed against closed valves, which could damage blood vessels, says Kimberly Mitchell, a licensed massage therapist in New York City.


Note always massage to the heart!

Recommendations on Physical Activity Nutriton & Mindset

Posted on May 25, 2015 at 11:50 AM Comments comments (0)

Recommendations on PhysicalActivity,Nutrition,andMindset

  • for Optimal Health For adults18-64 years old

Vision: canfitpro’s Recommendationson Physical Activity, Nutrition,and Mindset for Optimal Health

have been designed to assist healthy Canadians18-64 years of age in preventing non communicable

diseases through physical activity and good nutrition as well as cultivate a healthy,active, and fulfilling



1. Aerobic Activity: Accumulate 300 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or150 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity per week,or an equivalent combination of moderate-and vigorous-intensity activity.

2. Muscle Strengthening: Participate in muscle-strengthening activities involving major muscle groups on 3 or more days per week.

3. Flexiblity: Enjoy flexibility activities 4 or more days per week.

4. Nutrition: Implement health-promoting nutrition and hydration focus in gon primarily fresh, whole foods, minimizing the consumption of highly processed, energy-dense foods and drinks to support a healthy body composition daily.

5. Mindset: Adopt strategies to attain a positive mindset daily.

Learn more www.canfitpro.com

1st Trimester Pregnancy Guide

Posted on May 21, 2015 at 8:00 PM Comments comments (0)

As personal trainers, when it comes to taking on prenatal clients it may seem a bit of a mystery. Much of the research that’s out there proves that “exercise during pregnancy is good and beneficial,” but what about the details? What should you focus on with your prenatal clients when getting started?


Learning Objectives:

1. Learn what questions you should be asking your prenatal client.

2. Understand the training focus for a prenatal client in her first trimester.

3. Discover recommended exercises and exercise modifications to be included in a prenatal client’s exercise program during her first trimester.


1st Trimester: Week 1 through Week 12


2nd Trimester: Week 13 through Week 26


3rd Trimester: Week 27 through Week 40


Questions to Ask Your Prenatal Clients


Be sure she has talked with her physician and received approval to exercise prior to beginning an exercise program. You should familiarize yourself with absolute and relative contraindications to pregnancy as stated on ACOG.org such as: vaginal bleeding, thyroid disease; cardiovascular, respiratory or systemic disorders, previous miscarriage(s), previous preterm birth, anemia, malnourished or other significant medical condition. It may be a good idea to have written permission from each prenatal client’s physician prior to beginning any sessions.


If she is a first time client you must ask her about previous exercise experience along with any health or potential health issues. It’s important to know the answers to these following questions:

##How far along is her pregnancy (how many weeks)?

##How many pregnancies has she had in the past, if any?

##How old are her other birth children?

##Was she on bed rest or limited activity any time during current or previous pregnancy?

##What types of exercise is she interested in (e.g., weight training, Pilates, yoga, high intensity, low intensity, spinning, running, CrossFit, etc.)?

##Does she have a history of miscarriages, surgeries, chronic pain, scoliosis, etc.?

##Is she currently experiencing any discomfort?

##Does she have diastasis recti? Umbilical hernia?


The more you know about your prenatal client’s history the better you can create a specific program for her. Rather than just providing her with a workout, create a program that is also creating balance throughout her body. Give her extra “take-home” tips that she can do throughout her day, such as “stand or sit tall” - simple tips like that can help her carry the techniques you are working hard to teach her and apply them to her everyday life.


Start each session by asking her how she is feeling and then adjust her workout accordingly. Some days she may feel much better than others. While it’s important to work on increasing her strength during her first trimester, it’s also important to help her feel her best. You want her to leave the workout session feeling better than when she walked in.


You are there to encourage her along the way and help her feel confident with her workouts, so be sure to understand and communicate why you are selecting the exercises for her. Each and every exercise must serve a purpose and if an exercise or program doesn’t feel good for her body that day, even after you made the appropriate modifications, move on to exercises that do.


1st Trimester Focus Points


Yes, she can exercise even if she didn’t prior to pregnancy.


Now is not the time for your prenatal client to venture out and start a new sport, but that doesn’t mean she shouldn’t exercise if she didn’t prior to becoming pregnant. Research shows how important resistance training is for expecting women. So, start slow and gradually increase her sets and weights if she is new to resistance training. You may find performing just one set of resistance exercises in a first workout is best. Then, progress from there. It’s important to focus on her form and muscle connection to ensure that she feels the exercises correctly, rather than focusing on the amount of weight she is lifting.


Focus on increasing strength.


During her first trimester it’s important to focus on her strength, help her find her deep core connection, create good posture and teach her “body awareness.” Include exercises in her first trimester that she will not (or may not) be able to do later on in her pregnancy due to modifications, such as: back extensions, full lunges and lunge variations, planks and plank variations, core exercises and other appropriate exercises. (We will review recommended exercises later in this article.)


Teach deep core activation.


Teach your pregnant client how to connect her deep core muscles:

1. Exhale to lightly activate pelvic floor (kegel), cue with: “lifting a wet towel up through the center of your body.” This lifting up through the belly helps to activate transverse abdominals and multifidus (avoid the sucking belly button to spine approach), and continuing to lengthen through the torso helps to create good posture.

2. Inhale to allow a deep diaphragmatic breath into the sides and back of the ribcage, while maintaining a light deep core connection.


Teaching her to “lightly” connect and avoid “gripping” her pelvic floor and transverse abdominal muscles is key; you can partially identify that by her breathing. If you catch her holding her breath while trying to keep her deep core connected she is likely “over-activating.” For many this may just take time to learn. It’s also a good idea to teach her how to recruit her pelvic floor muscles by performing squats. (See “Squats” below for more on teaching pelvic floor recruitment).


Recommend a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise (most days).


It’s recommended that expecting women exercise most days of the week for about 30 minutes (and some research shows an hour a day). Including resistance training is beneficial as current research results by E.

- See more at: http://www.ptonthenet.com/articles/1st-trimester-pregnancy-guidelines-3950#sthash.sCTUWMFE.dpuf

White show that resistance training and aerobic exercise is more beneficial than just aerobic exercise on its own; specifically noting a significant decrease in gestational diabetes and hypertension disorders.

Minimize barriers to exercise.

The barriers to exercise are abundant. Once becoming pregnant your prenatal clients will turn to you for advice and lots of questions regarding what she can and cannot do. According to new research by Fieril Petrov, “pregnant women strived to exercise if the exercise facilitators outweighed the barrier,” proof that it’s important for expecting women to feel a positive impact from exercise. This is when modifications to exercise should come into play as her pregnancy progresses.

“Listen” to her body.

One additional piece of advice is to remind her to always “listen” to her body. If an exercise doesn’t feel right for her body, skip it and move on. It may just be that day or couple of weeks, as things shift due to changes during pregnancy, the baby is growing, and the client is adjusting to weight gain; not to mention, hormones. Hormones are partly to blame for some of those pregnancy aches and pains.

1st Trimester Specific Modifications

Avoid supine forward flexion.

I recommend avoiding forward flexion in a supine position after your prenatal client’s belly starts to show, when you can identify a “coning” look to her abdomen and she can no longer maintain her deep core connection in a neutral spine position, or at the time she reaches week 12 of pregnancy. This includes avoiding traditional crunches in any position; she may be able to do supine forward flexion as long as she can maintain her deep core connection in a neutral spine position but only in her first trimester.

Avoid quick changes in her position.

The hormone Relaxin now present in her body causing vasodilation, combined with an increase in blood volume can cause her to feel lightheaded or dizzy easily, especially when changing positions quickly. So, encourage her to take her time during each exercise movement and be there to spot her when needed. 

Avoid overstretching.

Additionally, due to the effects of the hormone Relaxin, encourage her to avoid overstretching and only stretch to a point that feels good and never painful. Movements that could overstretch her pubic symphysis and surrounding pelvic areas should be limited.

Maintain an appropriate workout intensity.

The level of your prenatal client’s energy exertion is always a concern. According to Dr. James Clapp II, conditioned pregnant athletes can safely exercise 5+ times/week at 65%-90% of their regular intensity for 55-60 minutes. For those just starting an exercise program, 2 to 5 times/week at 55% of their maximum capacity for 20 to 40 minutes.

Since you won’t be doing any VO2 max testing with your prenatal clients instead use the “talk test” to determine how hard she is working out. She should be able to carry on a light conversation. If she is extremely winded, you should decrease the intensity of the workout. It’s always better to stay on the lighter side of intensity, rather than overdue, but don’t be afraid challenge her, too. I tend to challenge my prenatal clients when it comes to resistance training versus cardiovascular exercise. You want her to feel better and more energized after her workouts and not exhausted. Research by E. White has shown slightly more benefits of resistance training along with aerobic exercise during pregnancy than no exercise or just aerobic exercise. From my personal experiences I see tremendous benefits to including resistance training during pregnancy, such as less aches and pains overall, more energy, quicker pushing phase of delivery, decreased need for emergency c-sections and easier and quicker recoveries.

Prone exercises may need to be skipped.

Prone exercises, specifically back extensions, can be a safe exercise during the first trimester (only) for some expecting clients. It’s best to perform prone exercises during her first pregnancy as her uterus (and belly) remains smaller during this time and then will expand as the pregnancy progresses (and continue to expand with additional pregnancies). You may need to avoid any and all prone exercises if she does not feel comfortable on her belly.

Avoid high impact exercises.

Avoid high impact exercises and those that create quick changes in direction, especially if she has had previous miscarriages or pregnancies. American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommends avoiding other exercises such as downhill skiing, contact sports, and scuba diving.

Is running safe?

Running may be a good option for some pregnant women, but encourage your expecting client to back off if it feels “off” to her in any way. Recommend other cardio options such as walking, swimming, elliptical and even cycling.


Staying hydrated is important when working out - especially if she is working out in a warmer temperature. Remain cautious, but there’s actually little concern of the expecting client’s body temperature getting too high. According to Dr. James Clapp II “Pregnancy reduces the risk of a mother’s temperature rising high enough to bother baby by improving her ability to get rid of heat through her skin and lungs.”  Just be sure she is dressed for warmer weather and encourage her to drink plenty of water.

- See morehttp://www.ptonthenet.com/articles/1st-trimester-pregnancy-guidelines-3950 at: http://www.ptonthenet.com/articles/1st-trimester-pregnancy-guidelines-3950#sthash.sCTUWMFE.dpuf

Article on Grilling

Posted on May 20, 2015 at 2:55 PM Comments comments (0)


It won’t kill you to grill.

Grilling the safest, most delicious food (without the health risks).


By Brian St. Pierre





  


Worried about grilling and cancer? Don’t let the fearmongers fool you. Check out these ingenious ways to grill for your health.




The smell of the grill. The hiss of the flame. The fun of a backyard barbeque.


Grilling is one of the great joys of summer.


At the same time, grilling meat does have its risks. Here’s how to use your grill to make nutritious, delicious food with minimal health hazards.


Fire up that grill, and let’s go.

•Want to listen instead of read? Download the audio recording here…


In defense of the grill


It’s a universal truth: Grilling makes food taste gooood.


It doesn’t matter what you put on there. It smells and tastes amazing.


Burgers? Steak? Seafood? Tofu? Veggies? Lettuce?


Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes and, surprisingly, yes — the grill even makes salad taste better. (Try grilled radicchio sometime.)


But the grill doesn’t just make food tasty. It offers some legitimate health benefits, too.


For instance, you don’t need much oil for grilling (unlike, say, sautéeing in a pan). And fat drips off during cooking.


(That’s not to say dietary fat is bad. In fact, the right balance of dietary fat is important for health. It’s just that excess fat — just like excess carbohydrate or protein — is something to be careful about.)


Plus, if you’re grilling, it probably means you’re cooking for yourself.


The company of family and friends, the great outdoors, the easy, minimal cleanup — all these perks mean you’ll be less tempted to head to a restaurant or call up some takeout.


In the big picture, calorie-packed dishes, overeating, social isolation, and lack of outdoor exposure do more to damage our health than the occasional intake of HCAs or PAHs (we’ll get to these in a moment).


So keep things in perspective. Give your grill (and family, and friends, and sunny backyard) some love.


[whispering] I love you, Big Green Egg.


But doesn’t grilling cause cancer?


Okay, now that we’ve gone and given our grill a big hug (was that just me?), let’s look at why grilling has gotten so much flack recently.


Grilling meat does produce a couple of chemicals that may increase risk of cancer. Scary sounding, I know. But let’s talk a little more about that…


Heterocyclic amines


Heterocyclic amines (HCAs) form when meat is overcooked or charbroiled: Creatine, amino acids, and sugars in meat react together with heat.


(Interestingly, this is the same process as the Maillard reaction — the chemical reaction that browns meat and makes it so tasty.)


HCAs can damage and change DNA. Thus, the Department of Health and Human Services places HCAs in the “reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen” category. Not good.


Animal research consistently shows that HCAs contribute to cancer development — at least in very large doses. (That “very large dose” part is important.) Likewise, human research shows that eating a lot of HCAs is associated with a higher risk of cancer.


More than 17 different HCAs have been identified as potentially risky for humans.


Four factors influence HCA formation:

1.Type of food

2.How it’s cooked


4.How long it’s cooked


Temperature is the most important of these four.


While HCAs begin to form at 212 F (100 C), the truly nasty types start to be made in large quantities at about 572 F (300 C). Most people grill their food in the 375-500 F range, though some will go up to 650 F to sear a steak, for example.


Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons


Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) form when meat is charred or blackened, or when fat from the meat drips onto the hot surface of the grill. This forms PAHs in the smoke, which then permeates the meat.


PAHs include over 100 different compounds formed by the incomplete burning of organic matter (e.g., oil, gas, coal, food, etc.) at temperatures in excess of 392 degrees F (200 C).


The Environmental Protection Agency has classified seven PAHs as probable human carcinogens.


PAH creation is influenced by:

•Temperature of cooking

•How long food is cooked

•Type of fuel used in heating

•Distance from heat source

•Fat content of the food


Essentially, the hotter and longer a meat is cooked, the more HCAs and PAHs.


Direct heat methods like frying and grilling produce more than indirect-heat methods like stewing, steaming or poaching.


Interestingly, HCAs and PAHs can only damage DNA after they have been metabolized by certain enzymes, a process known as bioactivation. We’ll talk more about this later.


Also, different people have different levels of enzyme activity, which likely affects how their bodies process HCAs and PAHs — and thus, their potential disease risk.


How to make grilling healthier


Regardless of your own personal response to HCAs and PAHs, there are some universal ways to reduce their formation and protect yourself from damage. These just so happen to be easy, and tasty too.


Use herbs and spices


Herbs and spices make food taste good. They also help lower HCA and PAH content.


The volatile oils and other compounds that give herbs and spices their flavor punch (and their superpowers, such as antioxidant activity) can help prevent the formation of these harmful chemicals.


For example…


Rosemary is the most researched herb. It can lower HCA formation by up to 90 percent in some cases. As a bonus, rosemary also has an incredible capacity for destroying the most noxious form of E. coli, O157:H7. It decreases cancer and food poisoning risk in one shot!


Other herbs from the mint family (of which rosemary is a part), all decrease HCA formation. This includes basil, thyme, sage and oregano.


Turmeric is another helpful spice. A classic spice used in South and East Asian dishes (it’s what makes curry yellow), turmeric can decrease HCA formation by up to 40 percent.


Humble onion powder has also been shown to reduce one of the major types of HCAs (PhlP) by up to 94 percent.


Fresh garlic, when used in marinades, can also decrease HCA formation by up to 70 percent.


Garlic close up


Marinate your meat


Acid-based marinades (vinegar, lemon or lime juice, wine, yogurt, etc.), can dramatically reduce HCA formation.


In one study, a teriyaki marinade was able to lower HCA levels by 44-67 percent, whereas a honey BBQ sauce marinade increased HCA formation 1.9-2.9 times! This was likely due to the high sugar content and low phenolic and antioxidant content of the BBQ sauce.


(Bonus tip: an acid-based marinade likely contains less sugar and fewer calories than the BBQ sauce. But if you are going to use BBQ sauce, put it on at the end of cooking. That way it’s less likely to burn and char.)


Beer marinades work, too — particularly ones made with dark beer.


In one experiment, marinating pork in dark beer before grilling decreased PAH levels by 53 percent, whereas a light Pilsner marinade only reduced PAH by 13 percent.


Other research has found that marinades can lower HCA levels by as much as 99 percent. Even coating your meat in a little olive oil can keep HCA in check by helping to prevent the meat from charring (but don’t go crazy, as fat dripping on the flame can increase PAH levels).


Don’t overcook


HCAs and PAHs depend on temperature plus time.


The hotter the temperature and the longer the cooking time, the more HCAs and PAHs get produced.


So overcooking not only turns your steak into shoe leather, it produces more HCAs and PAHs. Well-done meat contains three and a half times as many HCAs as medium-rare meat.


Blackened and charred meat have the highest levels of HCAs and PAHs. So, either prevent them from developing in the first place, or cut blackened bits off when they happen.


Exposure to high heat in general can be a problem. While it might seem better to use lower-temperature, longer-cooking barbecuing methods, this approach actually leads to very high levels of PAHs and HCAs because meat is cooking so long. (Remember it’s temperature and time, not just one or the other.)


Cook until meat reaches appropriate internal temperatures for food safety, but no longer.


Choose meat wisely


Highly-processed meats have a much stronger link to cancer than less-processed meats.


Foods with added nitrates like hot dogs, bacon, sausage, ham, and deli meats are thought to be much more problematic than whole-food meats like beef, chicken, pork and fish. This remains true even when factoring in the HCAs and PAHs created by grilling whole-food meats.


So start with high-quality meat.

•Most of the time, use whole, less-processed cuts of meat such as steaks, chicken thighs, ribs, etc. Fresh fish and seafood grill up nicely as well.

•If you like burgers, try making your own with ground beef, lamb, pork, bison, chicken or turkey.

•If you like sausages, look for fresh, traditionally made versions if possible.


And go with relatively leaner cuts, as fattier cuts drip more lipids into the grill, causing greater PAH formation.


Include lots of fruits and veggies


Fruits and veggies are your friends. Pair them with some grilled meats and they can also help fight any potential HCA / PAH damage.


First, like herbs and spices, fruits and vegetables (especially colorful ones) are full of health-promoting chemical compounds. In particular, foods that inhibit the mutagenic activity of HCAs include:


•dried plums



•red grapes





•green and black tea

•red wine


Sounds like a good summer grill menu to us. Perhaps a mixed green salad, iced green tea, and fruit for dessert?


You can also use some of these foods in your marinades. For example, mash cherries with lime juice, olive oil, and spices of your choice, then marinate your meat before cooking.


Second, fruits and vegetables help the liver remove potential toxins from the body. In particular, cruciferous veggies (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, brussel sprouts, etc.) seem to be extra helpful.


The probiotics in fermented dairy foods (like a yogurt dip) are also effective at neutralizing HCA mutagenic activity.


Interestingly, the yeast in beer also seems to have some neutralizing ability. So even if you don’t use a beer marinade, drinking a beer with your grilled meat can significantly lower the mutagenic activity of the HCAs that formed.


Don’t have to tell me twice.


Strategize while cooking


These tricks help reduce the formation of HCAs and PAHs:

•Cut your meat into smaller pieces to shorten cooking time, which decreases the risk of charring and burning, and lowers the exposure of the meat to high temperatures.

•Flip meat frequently to further reduce charring and burning.

•Cook meat on medium to medium-high heat. Longer cooking times and higher temperatures can both pose health risks, so a moderate approach is best.

•Cover the grill with foil to reduce drips and flare-ups.


What to do next

•Cook at home. If grilling helps you do more home cooking, go for it. Enjoy your grilled meat as part of well-balanced meals. Share the fun of summer grilling with family and friends. Meanwhile, think about what you’re putting on your plate alongside the grilled meat. Mayo-drenched potato salad and a pile of chips? Or a fresh salad and a skewer of grilled veggies? The usual dose of common sense applies.

•Keep the risks in perspective. Overall, HCAs and PAHs make a minor contribution to your cancer risk. Being sedentary, having excess body fat, and eating a diet rich in highly processed foods are much greater risk factors. If you have some slow-cooked, pit-roasted ribs in your life once in a while, you’ll probably survive. (And likely be happier overall. Don’t be afraid of your food.)

•Use grill-friendly seasonings and marinades. Use the power of herbs and spices to lower your risk (and make more flavorful food). Marinate your meat in acidic marinades rather than sugary sauces.

•Eat good food. Quality meat is better for you than the processed stuff. It also generally needs less time on the grill. (Who wants to cook a pricey grass-fed steak to well-done?) Choose leaner cuts where possible. Add lots of fruits and veggies to the mix, and you’re golden.

•Grill smart. Low-and-slow BBQ might taste good, but it’s not ideal for overall health. High temperatures can be dangerous, too. Go for medium to medium-high heat, cook your meat to the safety standards, and no more. Flip the meat regularly to avoid flare ups. Choose smaller, quick-cooking cuts when you can. And hey, if you just want a burger and a beer on a hot summer day? Enjoy it and move on.


What to read next


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