Women's Health

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Lift Heavy To Get Lean
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Lift Heavy To Get Lean

Many women (and men) exercise to lose weight and get toned. After many weeks and months of working out with light weights and high repetitions, they have enjoyed limited results and get disheartened. The solution may be to lift heavier weights and do fewer repetitions.  

Heavy Weights Don't Cause Bulking

For many women we talk to about our range of sports supplements, such advice sets off alarm bells. They are concerned that if they lift heavy weights and use protein powders they will bulk up, get square shoulders and start to look like body builders. The reality is that numerous reps of lighter weights that many women do to 'tone' is more likely to give you that body builder physique than lifting heavier weights at smaller repetitions.  

Protein Powder Doesn't Cause Bulking

Other women's fears of protein powders making them bulk up are also unfounded. Protein powders are an excellent way to retain a trim figure, increase energy and do not necessarily lead to 'explosive muscle growth' (contrary to what some of the advertisements in some magazines might promise). Unless you take supplements and eat a diet specifically designed specifically to help you bulk up, 95% of women will not bulk up, tending to build curves in the 'right' places instead.  

What the professionals say

Registered sports scientist Habib Noorbhai says this lingering myth over women bulking up from weight training is a very common misconception. “Strength training has a variety of benefits for women, one of which is preventing the earlier onset of bone and joint-related diseases such as osteoporosis, rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia. “Performing low to moderate intensity weight training will ensure increase in strength gains, assist in the loss of body fat and assist with activities of daily living.” He adds that “vigorous intensity weight training can initially lead to a minimal gain in lean muscle, but generally low to moderate intensity weight training combined with cardio, and following a healthy eating plan is the secret to getting toned and losing body fat”. We have to agree. We are lucky enough to have an in-house gym at Nature's Way HQ. Many of us have recently started to focus less on  the treadmill and bicep curls and more on lifting heavy. We use whole-body exercises like squats, dead lifts and power cleans in conjunction with circuit training and clean diet. We have certainly not noticed any bulking, are happy with improvements in strength and body shape and can also report a reduction in body fat.  

So where do you start?

There is an inherent risk in starting to lift heavier weights. Unless you are already experienced at weight training, we strongly recommend enlisting the services of a personal trainer or - ideally - a strength coach who can teach you proper form to avoid injury. Once you have learned the basics of safe lifting, you can start to increase the load and train with a friend or alone, however that initial expert guidance to help you refine your form and build a baseline of strength is highly recommended to help avoid serious injury..  
5 Benefits of CoQ10
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5 Benefits of CoQ10

CoQ10 (co-enzyme Q10) is a substance found in our body that is critical in energy production and there is a mounting body of evidence to show that it is important for a number of other things, including maintaining a healthy heart. CoQ10 is found naturally in our body, but our body's ability to synthesize CoQ10 declines with age. Further, some blood pressure and cholesterol medications can reduce your body's CoQ10 levels. Therefore, as you age, actively trying to top up your CoQ10 levels may support better heart health.  

5 Benefits of CoQ10

 

1. CoQ10 might help prevent heart failure

Early evidence suggests that low CoQ10 levels are associated with increased risk fo heart failure.  

2. CoQ10 might help prevent high blood pressure

Preliminary studies suggest increasing CoQ10 levels may help manage high blood pressure. Further studies are required.  

3. CoQ10 might help migraine sufferers

A 2005 study suggests that participants taking 100mg of CoQ10 three times daily significantly reduced migraine frequency when compared to the control group who took a placebo. More research is required to replicate the findings.  

4. CoQ10 helps energy production

CoQ10 plays an important role in a process known as ATP (adenosine triphosphate) synthesis. ATP is one of the most critical substances in cellular energy production. People with low CoQ10 levels may experience fatigue, and increasing CoQ10 levels has - over time - been shown to increase energy production and reduce fatigue in these same people.  

5. CoQ10 might help exercise performance.

Although further research is required, a small handful of preliminary studies suggest there may be a link between CoQ10 and strength and endurance among athletes.
Benefits of Maca for Women
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Benefits of Maca for Women

With all of the buzz around (and misuse of) the term 'superfoods', it ..
Women's Multivitamin VitaGummies For Adults
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Women's Multivitamin VitaGummies For Adults

Nature’s Way Women's MultiVitamin Vita Gummies are specially formulated to support women's health. Each delicious gummie is enriched with the key vitamins and minerals women need to help support daily health, including vitamins for energy production, bone and muscle health, healthy skin and healthy immune function. Vitamins never tasted so good.
Introducing Super Greens + Wild Reds
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Introducing Super Greens + Wild Reds

The Anti-Aging, Antioxidant Powerhouse
3 Recipes for Strong Bones
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3 Recipes for Strong Bones

Try these 3 recipes from our Superfoods Recipes archive to help you get more calcium and magnesium into your diet to support stronger bones and good muscle health.  

1. Banana Split Smoothie

Calcium and magnesium are both critical for maintaining strong bones as we age. And the ingredients in this recipe have magnesium and calcium in spades. The recipe also contains bananas, which can help the body better absorb calcium. Use soy milk over almond milk (soy milk has more calcium) to make this simple, tasty smoothie even better at protecting your bones. Try the Banana Split Smoothie now.  

2. Chia-Crusted Salmon

Whilst the Super Chia Seeds in this recipe are rich in calcium (which we already know is important for joint health), salmon is rich in vitamin D. Vitamin D makes your body much more efficient at absorbing calcium, and is very important for maintaining strong bones over time. Try the Chia-Crusted Salmon now.  

3. Chocolate Date Balls

Several  studies have found that the more magnesium people consume in their food, the denser their bones as they age. Dense bones are strong bones. There are a number of foods that are high in Magnesium, but our favourite is Cacao. Use our organic cacao, which is ultra-high in magnesium, to support bone and muscle health for years to come. Try the Chocolate Date Balls now.  
Key Nutrients For Pregnancy
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Key Nutrients For Pregnancy

Good nutrition can help ensure your child's development and well-being well before your child is conceived, believe it or not. If you are trying for a baby or are already pregnant, there are a handful of key nutrients for pregnancy to support both your health and the health of your child.

Key Nutrients For Pregnancy

It is important to eat a wide variety of foods during pregnancy, and the amount of food you need to eat will increase. Your baby will be the first one to tell you this - you can expect to have an increase appetite  as the pregnancy. Gaining some 'baby weight' (that is, additional body weight, not the weight of the baby) is also normal. You can expect to gain between 11 to 18 kg of baby weight during pregnancy. If you feel like weight gain during your pregnancy has become extreme or is a problem, talk to your doctor... dieting during pregnancy can be harmful to both you and your baby, so a professional's advice is important. For an in-depth look at diet during pregnancy, visit the Victorian Government's Better Health Channel's article on the topic. Let's take a closer look at the key nutrients you should be aware of during pregnancy.  

 1. Folate / Folic Acid

Folate (also 'folic acid') is one of the B vitamins. It is important during pregnancy as it can help with neural development and protect your unborn child against neural tube defects. 400mcg. a day is the recommended amount. Brocoli, asparagus, lentils, spinach and citrus fruits are all high in folate / folic acid.  

2. Iron

Your iron requirements increase during pregnancy, because your baby is also drawing on your intake of food sources of iron. During pregnancy, your recommended daily intake of iron rises from 18mg a day pre-pregnancy to 27mg a day during pregnancy (source : NRV.gov.au). Iron deficiency is common during pregnancy and iron supplements may be necessary. However, consult a doctor before starting an iron supplement, as too much iron can be harmful to mum and bub. Note: the iron content of some foods is reduced by cooking. Steaming vegetables for the minimum amount of time possible helps it retain it's iron content. Lean beef, chicken, eggs, berries and lentils are all good sources of dietary iron during pregnancy.  

3. Iodine

Iodine deficiency is increasing in Australia. In adults, iodine deficiency can lead to thyroid problems. In infants, the effects of iodine deficiency is much more severe, causing moderate to severe developmental problems in unborn children and infants. Iodine can be found in 'iodised' table salts. Fish is a good food source of iodine, yet eating fish during pregnancy should be approached with caution. Many fish types contain higher trace levels of heavy metals like mercury than others. Mercury can be harmful to a baby. Furthermore, eating raw fish or semi-raw fish should be avoided during pregnancy.... cooked fish only. Increase consumption of dairy products, which are typically rich in iodine. Talk to your doctor about whether an iodine supplement is required.  

4. Omega-3 Fatty Acids

The huge number of benefits from adequate omega-3 consumption are well documented. One type of omega-3 in particular called 'DHA' (docosahexaenoic acid) is important for mental development of unborn babies. Studies show that babies born of mothers who had high blood levels of DHA during birth had accelerated mental development compared to babies born from mothers with low DHA blood levels. Best food sources of DHA include seafood and marine algae. Vegetable sources of omega-3 such as chia seeds and flaxseeds are often recommended to increase omega-3 intake for pregnant women, but these contain a different type of omega-3 (ALA) that does not appear to have the same link to brain development. An omega-3 DHA supplement may also be a good idea.  

Final Tip

Your doctor should become like your best friend during pregnancy. Whilst you will receive advice from nearly everyone you know, the best person to turn to for advise on nutrition and/or supplements during pregnancy is your doctor. ----- This article was provided by our online health partner Health365. For more information on women's health, visit www.health365.com.au.  
Your Diet And PMS
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Your Diet And PMS

Do a foul mood, weight gain and uncontrollable food cravings sound ..
Evening Primrose Oil 1000mg
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Evening Primrose Oil 1000mg

Nature’s Way Evening Primrose Oil helps relieve the symptoms of Pre-Menstrual Symptoms (PMS). EPO contains Omega-6 Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA), which is involved in several biological functions, and may have a beneficial effect on women’s healthy hormonal balance. Nature’s Way EPO may also help relieve symptoms of mild osteoarthritis pain, mild eczema/dry skin and general health & wellbeing.