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Going Vegetarian? Remember These Simple Truths

Going Vegetarian?  Remember These Simple Truths

Thinking of adopting a vegetarian diet plan? More and more people are starting to make the switch from eating meat to choosing vegetarian-friendly foods instead.

For some people, it’s just a matter of cutting out meat once or twice throughout the week, while for others, they choose to go vegetarian because of their own personal beliefs.

Whatever the case, if you are thinking about going vegetarian, there are going to be some important points that you must remember before you do.

Those who go vegetarian without a game plan are not going to structure their diet properly and may be setting themselves up for long-term damage.

1. Vegetarian Does Not Mean Carb Loading

The very first thing that you absolutely must know about going vegetarian is that this doesn’t give you free rein to choose as many high carb foods as possible.

This is perhaps the biggest mistake people make. They think that, since they’re vegetarian, they should now be eating plates of pasta, bagels, bowls of cereal—basically anything that is a “whole” grain.

This isn’t the case at all. If you do this, there is a very good chance you will start to gain body fat as your body will consume far more calories and energy than it needs; not to mention, you’ll be on a roller coaster ride of hunger all throughout the day.

A proper vegetarian diet is actually quite low in all those foods just described. Instead, it’ll have you turning to ample amounts of fresh fruits and vegetables, seeds and nuts, beans, lentils, and legumes, along with smaller amounts of rice, quinoa, barley, oatmeal, and whole wheat pastas.

This will provide far greater nutritional balance in your day and help to prevent energy highs and lows over the 24 hour period.

2. You’ll Need To Plan Your Day Properly

Next, you need to start doing some planning if you are going to adopt the vegetarian way of eating.

Since you won’t be taking in nearly as many “complete” sources of protein, which animal proteins provide, food combining is going to be more important for you.

Food combining will allow you to get your protein needs met because you will get specific amino acids from both of the foods that you’re eating; the combined foods together will complete the full spectrum.

This is important because if you aren’t getting the full spectrum of amino acids, you are not going to maintain your muscle mass as well and may not recover from workouts as quickly either.

Whenever you are eating grains such as brown rice or barley, try and combine them with some beans and lentils as well to complete the protein source.

One exception to this rule is quinoa, which is a complete grain itself and perfect to consume on a vegetarian diet plan.

3. Your Risk Of Nutritional Deficiencies Goes Up

The next thing that you need to know before starting a vegetarian plan is that your risk of nutritional deficiencies may also go up.

Vegetarians are going to be at risk for experiencing nutritional deficiencies in a number of different vitamins and minerals, including calcium, iron, phosphorus, and zinc.

It’s going to be very important that you are either making sure to choose vegetarian friendly foods that are complete in these nutrients, or alternatively, supplementing with a multi-vitamin.

If you are going to choose to supplement with a vitamin, see if you can find one that is specifically designed for vegetarians.

This will ensure that you are getting as many of the nutrients you need as possible. Just always keep in mind that it is better to get your nutrients from whole foods whenever you can, so don’t think that just because you’re using a supplement, you don’t have to pay attention to your diet plan.

4. There Will Be An Adjustment Process

Finally, the last thing that you need to know and remember is that there will be a strong adjustment period when you first start up on a vegetarian diet plan.

You may find that it does take some time to get used to and at first, your energy levels may be low.

This will largely depend on just how well you structure your diet and if you are taking care to get the nutrients that you need.

Those who are paying good attention to proper vegetarian nutrition and use this right off the bat are less likely to find that they are dealing with energy slumps or related issues, so spend some time getting the proper concepts in place before you get going. It will be well worth the effort.

As you get started on the vegetarian diet plan, you may also want to consider using a vegetarian friendly protein supplement as well to make sure that your protein needs do get met.

Both hemp powder as well as soy protein powder can be used by those who are using the vegetarian diet and will offer high quality protein for few calories.

At times when you are trying to get your protein intake sufficiently met from beans, lentils, and other vegetarian sources such as tofu or tempeh, it can get harder to keep your calorie intake down as these foods, while they do contain protein, also contain quite a higher amount of fats and carbs as well.

By using the protein powder, which is almost entirely protein, you’ll avoid this problem.

So there you have the vital points to know about going vegetarian. Make sure that you fully research this way of eating so that you are prepared for all the challenges possible with a vegetarian diet plan.

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Last Updated on November 11, 2019

How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

How to Improve Memory and Boost Your Brainpower

Have you ever noticed that some people are able to effortlessly remember even the most mundane details and quickly comprehend new things? Well, you can too!

To unlock the full potential of your brain, you need to keep it active and acute. Wasting time on your couch watching mindless television shows or scrolling through facebook is not going to help.

Besides getting out flashcards, what can you do to help remember things better and learn new things more quickly? Check out these 10 effective ways on how to improve memory:

1. Exercise and Get Your Body Moving

Exercising doesn’t just exercise the body, it also helps to exercise your brain. Obesity and the myriad of diseases that eventually set in as a result of being overweight can cause serious harm to the brain.

Furthermore, without regular exercise, plaque starts to build up in your arteries, and your blood vessels begin to lose the ability to effectively pump blood. Plaque buildup leads to heart attacks and it also reduces the amount of oxygen and nutrients that your blood carries to your brain. When the nutrients don’t make it there, the brain’s ability to function is compromised.

To prevent this from happening, make sure you get moving every day. Even if it’s just a brisk walk, it’ll help you maintain and increase your mental acuity. Brisk walking, swimming and dancing are all excellent activities. Take a look at these 5 Ways to Find Time for Exercise.

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2. Eliminate Stressors and Seek Help If You’re Depressed

Anything that causes you major stress, like anger or anxiety, will in time begin to eat away the parts of your brain that are responsible for memory. Amongst the most brain-damaging stressors is depression, which is actually often misdiagnosed a a memory problem since one of its primary symptoms is the inability to concentrate.

If you can’t concentrate, then you might feel like you are constantly forgetting things. Depression increases the levels of cortisol in your bloodstream which elevates the cortisol levels in the brain. Doctors have found that increased cortisol diminishes certain areas of the brain, especially the hippocampus which is where short-term memories are stored.

Prolonged depression can thus destroy your brain’s ability to remember anything new. Seek professional help to combat your depression – your brain will thank you.

3. Get a Good Night’s Sleep and Take Naps

Getting a consistent 7 to 8 hours of sleep each night will increase your memory. During sleep, the brain firms up memories of recently acquired information.

Getting enough sleep will help you get through the full spectrum of nocturnal cycles that are essential to optimal brain and body functioning during the waking hours. Taking a nap throughout the day, especially after learning something new, can also help you to retain those memories as well as recharge your brain and keep it sharper longer.

4. Feed Your Brain

Fifty to sixty percent of the brain’s overall weight is pure fat, which is used to insulate its billions of nerve cells. The better insulated a cell is, the faster it can send messages and the quicker you will be thinking.

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This is precisely why parents are advised to feed their young children whole milk and to restrict dieting – their brains’ need fat to grow and work properly. Skimping on fats can be devastating even to the adult brain.

Thus, eating foods that contain a healthy mix of fats is vital for long-term memory. Some excellent food choices include fish (especially anchovies, mackerel and wild salmon) and dark leafy green vegetables. Here’re more brain food choices: 12 Foods that Can Improve Your Brain Power

Deep-fried foods obviously contain fat but their lack of nutritional value is not going to help your brain or your body, so think healthy foods and fats.

5. Eat Breakfast and Make Sure It Includes an Egg

According to Larry McCleary, M.D., author of  The Brain Trust Program, an egg is the ideal breakfast. Eggs contain B vitamins which help nerve cells to burn glucose, antioxidants that protect neurons against damage; and omega-3 fatty acids that keep nerve cells firing at optimal speed.

Other foods to add to your breakfast include fruits, veggies and lean proteins. Avoid trans fats and high fructose corn syrup. Trans fats diminish the brain cells’ ability to communicate with each other and HFCS can actually shrink the brain by damaging cells.

Having a healthy breakfast in the morning has been shown to improve performance throughout the day. If you’re too busy to have a healthy breakfast, this maybe just right for you: 33 Quick And Healthy Breakfasts For Busy Mornings

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6. Write it Down

If there’s something you want to remember, writing it down can help.

It may sound like a no-brainer, but do you really know why? Writing it down creates oxygenated blood flow to areas of your brain that a responsible for your memories and literally exercises those parts of it. Here’s How Writing Things Down Can Change Your Life.

You can start a journal, write yourself emails or even start keeping a blog – all of these activities will help to improve your capacity to remember and memorize information.

7. Listen to Music

Research shows that certain types of music are very helpful in recalling memories. Information that is learned while listening to a particular song or collection can often be recalled by thinking of the song or “playing” it mentally. Songs and music can serve as cues for pulling up particular memories.

8. Visual Concepts

In order to remember things, many people need to visualize the information they are studying.

Pay attention to photographers, charts and other graphics that might appear in your textbook; or if you’re not studying a book, try to pull up a mental image of what it is you are trying to remember. It might also help to draw your own charts or figures, or utilize colors and highlighters to group related ideas in your notes.

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Here, you can learn How to Become a Person Who Can Visualize Results.

9. Teach Someone Else

Reading material out loud has been shown to significantly improve memory of the material. Expanding further upon this idea is the fact that psychologists and educators have found that by having students teach new concepts to others, it helps to enhance understanding and recall.

Teach new concepts and information to a friend or study partner, and you’ll find you remember the information a lot better.

10. Do Crossword Puzzles, Read or Play Cards

Studies have shown that doing crossword puzzles, read or play cards on a daily basis not only keep your brain active but also help to delay memory loss, especially in those who develop dementia.

So pick up the daily newspaper and work on that crossword puzzle, read a book or enjoy a game of solitaire.

Pick one to two of these tips first and start applying them to your everyday life. Very soon you’ll find yourself having better memories and a clearer head!

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Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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