Saturday, December 29, 2007

Good Nutrition Saves Us!

Synergy or synergism (from the Greek synergos meaning working together, circa 1660) refers to the phenomenon in which two or more discrete agents, acting together, create an effect greater than the sum of the effects each is able to create independently. This is definitely true when it comes to a balanced diet. Good nutrition is vital to developing a fit body and every day there is more research appearing that proves the importance of eating a variety of plant foods.

Recently, Dr. Rui Hai Liu, an associate professor in the Department of Food Science at Cornell University, appeared at the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) International Conference on Food, Nutrition and Cancer to present some of his latest findings: "Different (raw) plant foods have different phytochemicals, these substances go to different organs, tissues and cells, where they perform different functions. What your body needs to ward off disease is this synergistic effect - this teamwork - that is produced by eating a wide variety of plant foods." Clearly, a vitamin-mineral supplement is not enough. There needs to be a platform of whole food nutrition to build from. Choose a whole food supplement to bridge the gap of the foods you are eating and the foods you need to eat more often. “The thousands of vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals in (raw) whole foods act synergistically together to create a more powerful effect than the sum of their parts, producing a result which cannot be recreated by supplements". This statement is from Jeff Prince, the vice president for education at the American Institute for Cancer Research. This is evidence that it is the synergistic combination of all pure raw whole food ingredients including nuts, seeds, grains, fruits, vegetables, berries, herbs, oils, & spices that creates a strong and healthy body.

Variety is the spice of life. It is also the key to a balanced diet. Reward your body with a variety of raw foods and a good quality whole food supplement to give yourself the nutritional edge needed for perfect health!

Mollie McCarl
Personal Trainer, Fitness SPA
Workout with Mollie on Comcast's On Demand channel 886 in "Workout Routines"

Thursday, December 27, 2007


Most importantly, as you begin strength training, is to focus on challenging yourself, not killing yourself. Within the first few weeks, focus on learning how to do each exercise rather than on how much weight you're lifting or how many exercises you're doing.

Warm up with 5-10 minutes of light cardio or with warm up sets of each exercise using a light-medium weight.

Choose 1-2 exercises for each muscle group (see below) and do 1-2 sets of 8-16 repetitions of each exercise. As a beginner, you may want to start with about 15-16 reps until you feel comfortable with the moves and build some strength. After that, you can add more weight and reduce your reps for a different challenge.

If you exercise in a gym, you may want to start with machines so you have more stabilization for the movements.

Give yourself at least a day of rest (though you may need more after the first workout) to recover.

Each week, add either 1 repetition and/or a few pounds of weight to each exercise to progress. Just keep your reps at about 16 or below. Once you hit 16 reps, increase your weight and drop your reps down to 10 or 12 reps.

Below is a list of muscle groups along with sample exercises. If you're a beginner, you only need to choose 1-2 exercises for each muscle group in the upper body and 3-4 moves for the lower body.

Chest: bench press, chest press machine, pushups, pec deck machine
Back: seated row machine, back extensions, lat pulldowns
Shoulders: overhead press, lateral raise, front raise
Biceps: bicep curls, hammer curls, concentration curls
Triceps: tricep extensions, dips, kickbacks
Lower Body: Squats, lunges, leg press machines, deadlifts, calf raises Abdominals: crunches, reverse crunches, oblique twists, pelvic tilts

You will be amazed at how quickly your body responses to your new workout routine!

Mollie McCarl
Personal Trainer, Fitness Spa
Comcast "on Demand" channel 886 "workout routines"

Monday, December 17, 2007


In order to remain fit and fabulous, we must both exercise regularly and eat a balanced diet rich in fruit and vegetables. According to new research from the Georgetown University Medical Center, fruits and veggies contain chemicals that enhance DNA repair in cells, which could lead to protection against cancer development. In a new study published in the "British Journal of Cancer" and by the journal "Nature" the researchers show that in laboratory tests, a compound called indole-3-carinol (I3C), found in broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage, and a chemical called genistein, found in soy beans, can increase the levels of two specific proteins that repair damaged DNA. This study is one of the first to provide a molecular explanation as to how eating vegetables could cut the risk of developing cancer and Eliot M. Rosen, MD, PhD, professor of oncology, cell biology, and radiation medicine at Georgetown 's Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center says, "It is now clear that the function of crucial cancer genes can be influenced by compounds in the things we eat, our findings suggest a clear molecular process that would explain the connection between diet and cancer prevention." The study was funded by the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation and the National Cancer. These results are important in demonstrating to people how necessary it is to eat the recommended 9-13 fruits and veggies daily. So be sure to add a few extra servings to your meals and your body will thank you by keeping you healthy.
Mollie McCarl
Fitness Spa Personal Trainer
Comcast On Demand-go to 886-click-workout videos

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Fears Can Be Treated Successfully With Combination of Drugs and Behavior Therapy

Medication combined with behavioral therapy can be effective in helping individuals fight their fears, says Michael Davis, PhD, Robert W. Woodruff Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and a faculty member at Yerkes National Primate Research Center at Emory University. Dr. Davis presented an update on his research at the Neuroscience 2007 meeting, the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience held in San Diego.

Dr. Davis described how a greater understanding of the brain's neurotransmitters has led to improved therapies for reducing or inhibiting fears. With the use of cognitive therapy, as well as medications such as D-cycloserine, researchers have been able to help patients who suffer from anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and social phobia.

The key to successful treatment, Dr. Davis has found in his research, is to improve the process that makes cognitive behavioral therapy work. The scientific term for this process is fear extinction. The discovery by Dr. Davis that a type of receptor in the brain, called the NMDA receptor, is critical for this extinction process has led to the idea of using a drug called D-cycloserine in conjunction with cognitive behavioral therapy.

"We are trying to improve the lives of people who may have an obsessive-compulsive disorder so severe that they cannot get out of bed as they try to decide which foot should go first," says Dr. Davis. " We want to help the person who has a panic attack crossing a bridge to no longer feel terrified to cross. We want to help someone who has nightmares from reliving a traumatic experience."

Anxiety disorders are the most common type of psychiatric illness. More than 19 million adults and children suffer from problems related to anxiety disorders, says Dr. Davis.

"Medications have been extremely helpful in treating many of these individuals, but they can have side effects or not always work," says Dr. Davis. "Neuroscientists in my lab are looking at areas of the brain related to the extinction of fears and are trying to better understand the underlying mechanisms to help determine the most effective treatment to help patients resolve their anxieties and lead a more normal life."

The study is supported by the National Institute of Mental Health, the Woodruff Foundation, the Center for Behavioral Neuroscience of the National Science Foundation and the Yerkes National Primate Research Center of Emory University.

New CDC Study Finds 5.5 Percent Increase in Injury Mortality from 1999

Increases in deaths among 20-to-29 and 45-to-54 year olds contribute to first overall increase in years

Injury death rates nationally rose more than 5 percent after a two-decade period of decline, according to a study released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in today's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The report indicates the largest increases were seen in the 20-29 and 45-54 year age groups.

The total injury mortality rate includes deaths from unintentional injury, suicides, homicides, and injuries of undetermined intent. If a death could not be definitively attributed to unintentional injury or suicide, it is considered to be of undetermined intent. Homicide rates remained stable throughout the 1999-2004 period, with unintentional poisonings accounting for more than half of the total increase in injury deaths.

"We're very concerned anytime we see an increase in premature deaths," said Ileana Arias, Ph.D., director of CDC's National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. "We don't know if this is an indication of a trend, but it is something that needs to be further examined."

The 45- to 54-year-old age group experienced the largest increase in injury mortality rates. This group had a 25 percent increase, for an additional 8,000 deaths in 2004. In comparison, the 20-29-year age group had an 8 percent increase in total injury death rates. Unintentional poisonings accounted for more than 50 percent of the increase in each group.

Shared risk factors could contribute to the increase in multiple injury categories and age groups, Arias said. For example, the recent increase in prescription drug abuse during the same time period in these age groups could have contributed to an increase in mortality due to suicide, homicide, unintentional poisoning, and other types of unintentional injury. Prevention programs that focus on such shared risk factors could help reduce the number of injury-related deaths.

"The increase in prescription drug overdoses among the middle-aged is something that the CDC has noted before," said Len Paulozzi, M.D., a medical epidemiologist at the Injury Center. "We need to explore the increases in other types of injury for which drug abuse is a risk factor in the same age groups."

For this study, CDC analyzed mortality data on resident deaths occurring in the United States, as compiled from death certificates by the National Vital Statistics System.

For more information about unintentional poisoning prevention, please go to

For more information about suicide prevention, please go to

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Workout with Comcast

Often it is fun to just do a few exercises early in the morning to get your day started right. That's why I have created videos for Comcast Cable. There are eight different videos to choose from Yoga to Pilates. These quick videos will get your day moving right. On your Comcast remote click 886 (On Demand) and then scroll down to Workout Videos. Click on these and eight different videos will appear to choose from. I hope you enjoy them!

Mollie McCarl
Personal Trainer
Fitness Spa

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Are You Dehydrated?

Most Americans are chronically dehydrated and don’t realize it. By the time your mouth feels dry, your body is in acute dehydration and serious problems may begin to show such as fatigue, high or low blood pressure, respiratory troubles, obesity, eczema, infections and a multitude of other issues. The human body consists of 70% water, the brain consists of 80% water, and blood consists of 90% water. Let’s face it; we rely on water as the basis of our existence — not Pepsi, juice, coffee, or beer. We need to ingest water in its purest form, free from any chemicals in order for our cells to remain hydrated and our body systems functioning as they should.
Can you drink 64 ounces of tap water? Chlorination makes tap water safe to use but it can also react with organic compounds to produce toxic substances. So, do you think that bottled water is healthier than tap water or do you like the packages? In a four-year scientific study they tested more than 1,000 bottles of 103 brands, a third of them were found to contain contaminants such as arsenic and carcinogenic. Yet, bottled water is so popular and available almost everywhere: the bottled water industry enjoys annual sales of more than $35 billion worldwide.

I recommend restructured Alkaline water that helps to energize, oxidize, and reduce acid in the body. Most bodies are too acidic from the foods we eat. Alkaline water offers clean water without chemicals but has the minerals your body needs. Mention this article at Fitness Spa and we will be happy to offer you free alkaline water sample. We just bought our machine and are pleased with the results. It’s all about health!

Mollie McCarl
Fitness SPA

Monday, August 20, 2007

Great Tips for a Healthy Body

Help Prevent Disease & Slow the Aging Process With These Super-foods!

Exercise is wonderful for the body, but feeding it is just as important. These five vegetable and fruit super-foods can slow the aging process and help prevent the three biggest killers. Add these delicious healthy super-foods to your family’s meals as often as possible.

Tomatoes - Decrease Cancer Risk With Tomatoes. The powerful antioxidant Lycopene, found in mainly in tomatoes, helps protect against heart disease, stroke, high cholesterol, osteoporosis and cancer. Cooked tomatoes are better because heat causes more Lycopene to be released. Buy the best: Choose dark red tomatoes and store fresh tomatoes at room temperature.

Blueberries - Help Prevent Heart Disease With Blueberries, bountiful with vitamin C, fiber and potassium. Preliminary evidence suggests that a component in blueberries might enable cells to break down fat and cholesterol, which helps keep arteries clear. Buy the best: Year-round, buy frozen berries labeled "unsweetened"” or whenever available fresh in season at your grocery’s produce department.

Broccoli - Help Beat Cancer. A National Cancer Institute study found that people who ate three servings of vegetables a day (especially those who included a half serving of broccoli or cabbage) were 40 percent less likely to get a cancer called non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, have also been shown to lower the risk of ovarian cancer. Buy the best: Choose broccoli with florets or bud clusters that are dark green with some purple tinge.

Kale - Help Protect Your Eyes By Eating More Kale and other dark green leafy vegetables. They can significantly reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke. Kale is also high in the Antioxidants Lutein and Zeaxanthin, which protect the eyes and can reduce the risk of cataracts. Buy the best: Look for crisp, fresh, dark-green leaves, or buy frozen, chopped kale.

Sweet Potatoes - Help Lower Your Risk of Stroke. These flavorful dark-orange "spuds" are one of the highest sources of Antioxidants (such as Beta Carotene), which may help prevent heart disease, strokes and certain cancers. Sweet potatoes are also high in fiber and immune-boosting vitamin C. Buy the best: Choose sweet potatoes that are firm and have clean, smooth skins. Don’t confuse this vitamin-filled veggie for "less nutritious' yams.

Mollie McCarl
Fitness Spa
Personal Trainer and Nutritionist

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Why Nutrients Keep Your Body Healthy

We all know that eating right is the way to go, but here are some interesting facts to remember when you reach for the healthy apple instead of a candy bar. Nutrients do not have immediate effects. It is gradual as the vitamins and minerals nourish the body. The business of nutrition is to build a better body. To do this Nature has to turn over body cells. Amazingly, a blood cell last only 60 – 120 days. In 3 to 4 months your whole blood supply is completely replaced. In 6 months almost all the proteins in you body die and are replaced, even the DNA of your genes. In a year all your bones and even the enamel of your teeth are replaced, constructed entirely out of the nutrients you eat. For example, if you neglect a plant and then begin to take care of it again, the progress is slow, but soon you have a healthy plant. Our bodies react the same in that they will gradually improve in a healthy way with nutrient dense food such as fruit and vegetables.
I highly recommend Juice Plus as a supplement to your healthy diet. With its 17 raw fruits and veggies, it is a great way to help build healthy cells.

Mollie McCarl
Certified Personal Trainer
Owner, Fitness Spa770-632-3595

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Never Too Late for a Healthy Life Style

Interesting information from the Whole Food Farmacy.

Dr. Dana King and his team of researchers at the Medical University of South Carolina have just completed a very inspirational study. Dr. King and his team set out to find if middle-aged adults could reap the rewards of habits like eating vegetables and walking 30 minutes a day.
The researchers reported in June 2007 that middle-aged adults age 45 to 64 who began eating five or more fruits and vegetables every day, exercising for at least 2 1/2 hours a week, keeping weight down and not smoking decreased their risk of heart disease by 35 percent and risk of death by 40 percent in the four years after they started.
“The adopters of a healthy lifestyle basically caught up. Within four years, their mortality rate and rate of heart attacks matched the people who had been doing these behaviors all along,” said Dr. Dana King at the Medical University of South Carolina, who led the research. Dr. King added “even if you have not had a healthy lifestyle previously, it’s not too late to adopt those healthy lifestyle habits and gain almost immediate benefits.”
The four key habits are eating five or more servings of fruits and vegetables everyday, exercising for 2 ½ hours per week, not smoking and maintaining a healthy weight. The study participants who adopted all four healthy habits enjoyed a sharp decline in heart disease risk and in death from any cause.
It took all four — having just three of the healthy habits yielded no heart benefits and a more modest decrease in overall risk of death.
Still, said Dr. Nichola Davis at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, “these benefits are on a continuum. The more of the healthy habits that you can adapt, the better. ...These are modest changes that they’re talking about.”

Monday, July 02, 2007


1. Eat 5-6 small meals per day. By eating small, nutrient balanced meals every 2-3 hours throughout the day you will kick your metabolism into high gear and become a fat burning machine. When you eat small, frequent meals your body has a constant flow of energy throughout the day. This will help prevent cravings for junk food and it also will rev your body's fat burning abilities. Each meal should be roughly the same size and contain protein, carbohydrate and fat. Preferably a ratio of 30% fat, 35% protein and 35% carbohydrate. (ex: grilled salmon, salad with mixed veggies, oil & vinegar and nuts, 1/2 cup brown rice.)
2. Do not eat poor quality carbohydrates. Poor quality carbohydrates are those that contain sugar or are highly processed. These would include most breakfast cereals, breads, snack foods, candies, and even fruit juices. Eating these foods will likely result in increased fat deposit and will prevent your body from maintaining a successful fat-burning mode.
3. Increase your muscle mass. The more lean muscle you have, the more calories your body will burn even at rest. Muscle is extremely active metabolically. Do resistance training 2-4 times per week, add some muscle, and crank up that metabolism.
4. Never let yourself get too hungry, or too stuffed. It really is all about moderation. Time your meals so that you eat before you are starving . . . doing this one simple thing will cause you to almost always eat less. When you do eat, stop when you’re satisfied not when you are so stuffed you cannot even get down another bite.
5. Up your cardio intensity. Include 1-2 short, high intensity cardio sessions in your weekly schedule. Jump on the stair master for 12 minutes, full throttle, and you will get the fat burning.
6. Eat more high fiber foods. Most of us do not get enough fiber in our daily diets, and that’s just a shame. Fiber not only promotes overall general health, but also can significantly aid in your fat-burning efforts by leaving you feeling satisfied. Vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts/seeds and whole grains are ideal sources of fiber. 7. Drink Water... and lots of it. Staying hydrated and filling up with at least 8 glasses of H2O per day will help you stay full and fueled for fat loss.
7. Drink Water... and lots of it. Staying hydrated and filling up with at least 8 glasses of H2O per day will help you stay full and fueled for fat loss.
See you at Fitness Spa!
Mollie McCarl, Certified Personal Trainer

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Stay Safe From Burns with Airbrush Tans

Who wants to have a tan without frying in the sun or in a tanning bed? Great news! Fitness Spa has just purchased a fantastic new airbrush sprayer. In just 10 minutes you'll have a beautiful golden tan. We spray it on you so there are no drips or streaking. Just wear a bathing suit and come over for a perfect tan. Fitness Spa is all about health so don't worry about harmful chemicals in our formula. We searched until we found a gal in Florida who makes her own healthy tanning solution. We are proud to say we are the only tanning salon in Georgia with this fabulous formula. Made from aloe and sugar beets, it is so safe you can drink it. Give us 10 minutes and you'll look like you spent the day at the beach! 770-632-3595

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Stronger Bones Through Exercise

Exercise Your Way to Stronger Bones
Great Information from Dr. David Williams

Exercise is the single most important thing you can do to build stronger bones. It requires your body to move against the force of gravity. This movement promotes the healthy breakdown of old bone matter by cells called osteoclasts and the build up of new bone matter by cells called osteoblasts.
When this natural breakdown and repair process—called remodeling—is in balance, your bones stay strong and supple…and your entire skeleton can be completely regenerated in a period of 10 years or less!

The Best Exercise Choices
Weight-bearing exercises—such as dancing, walking, and jogging—are the best for maintaining and building bone strength. Strive to do at least 20 minutes of this kind of exercise, four times a week.
Studies show that a regular weight-bearing exercise program can increase bone mass by five to 10 percent—even more in those with low bone mass to begin with. And no matter their age, people who engage in regular weight-bearing exercise have higher bone densities than people of similar age who don’t exercise.
To further increase bone density, more strenuous exercise may be required. I recommend at least two sessions of resistance training each week. Have an exercise instructor at your local gym show you how to start with small weights you can use at home.
If you’ve exercised in the past—or even thought about it—but have gotten off track for one reason or another, now is the perfect time to get started again. With regular exercise, you’ll reap many health benefits...including stronger bones.
Other Steps for Building Bone
Although I believe that regular exercise is the most important factor in building strong bones, there are other things you can do for optimal bone health.
Eat a Healthy, Balanced Diet
A natural diet focused on healthy green vegetables can go a long way in providing the nutrients necessary to help keep your bone remodeling process in balance. You should also reduce your consumption of soft drinks because their phosphoric acid content can leach important calcium from your bones. Likewise, smoking and a high consumption of sugar, caffeine, or alcohol can be detrimental to bone health.
Supplements Are a Must
Even if you eat a completely natural, primarily vegetarian diet, it’s likely that this won’t be enough for optimal bone health. Because our foods are grown in nutrient-depleted soil and our bodies are under frequent stress, we simply aren’t getting the nutrients we need and our bones are unable to adequately absorb the nutrients available.

That’s where targeted supplements come in. I recommend you take the following in addition to a healthy diet.
Calcium (1,000-1,500 mg daily)Undoubtedly, this is the first mineral that comes to mind when you think of bone health. Certainly calcium is key, but it must be in the proper form in order to be taken up by your bones. Some of the best-absorbed types of supplemental calcium are calcium citrate, ascorbate, gluconate, and malate.

Magnesium (500-750 mg daily) In order for calcium to be properly absorbed into your bone matrix, it needs to be in balance with magnesium—in a 2:1 or 1:1 ratio. Magnesium also does its own work to support bone remodeling by promoting osteoblast activity.

Vitamin D (600-1,000 IU daily) This inexpensive, yet effective nutrient helps control calcium balance in the body and promotes your body’s uptake of calcium into your bones.
Vitamin K (500 mcg daily) This little-known vitamin works with vitamin D to attract calcium to your living bone matrix.

Ipriflavone (600 mg daily) This bioflavonoid helps to stimulate bone-building cells and inhibits cells that break down bone.

Remember, your bones are your structural foundation. Keeping them strong, flexible, and well nourished will make a huge difference in what you’ll be able to do and enjoy this year and in the years ahead. So start—or stick to—your exercise goals and try a bone-healthy diet and supplement program, too.

Stay Healthy,
Mollie McCarl
Certified Personal Trainer
Fitness Spa

Monday, May 14, 2007

Create a Healthy Lifestyle

Healthy & Fit Lifestyle
1. Eat lots of Vegetables and Fruits: Veggies and fruits are low in calories, provide filling fiber, vitamins and minerals, and protect your health in many ways.
2. Boost Protein Intake: Protein is important for preserving and building lean tissue – it’s the muscle that burns calories! Eat only 1-3oz per serving.
3. Use Fiber-Rich Foods: Fiber is filling, makes foods more satisfying and promotes health.
4. Boost Mineral Intake: Calcium and other minerals help your body shed unwanted fat.
5. Eat Fish and "Good" Fats: The omega-3 unsaturated fatty acids in some fish, oils and nuts are vital to health.
6. Cut Out “Junk” Carbs: Sugar and white flour sabotage your healthy diet in all but the smallest amounts.
7. Greatly Reduce “Junk” Fats: “Bad” fats – saturated and trans-fats are high in calories and are loaded with harmful fatty acids that contribute to disease.
8. Reduce or Eliminate Alcohol: Alcohol consumption tends to cause weight gain.
9. Reduce Food Gently: Extreme and sudden dieting causes your body to hold on to fat, not burn calories.
10. Eat Snacks, Not Meals: More frequent, smaller snacks are burned for energy, not stored as fat.
11. Eat Earlier, Not Later: Skipping breakfast makes it difficult later in the day to control your appetite.
12. GET YOUR CELLS MOVING!: You must exercise to build lean muscle that burns fat!
13. Move More Often!: Gradually boost exercise frequency and intensity for even greater effects.
14. Reduce Stress: Stress increases hunger and promotes weight gain.
15. Get Daily Sunshine and Plenty of Sleep: Sunshine produces Vitamin D, which helps in fat loss. Sleep is necessary for rejuvenation and carbohydrate metabolism.16. Surround yourself with other Healthy and Active People: Being around people that have good habits and make healthy choices will inspire you to choose a salad over a burger and choose exercise over watching TV.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Immune Boost

A sense of humor is a great way to help your immune system! Studies show that laughter and joy actually improves your immune function. What we think affects the way we feel. If you are feeling depressed try watching a funny movie or remembering a time when something made you laugh. Your body responds to the way you feel so bring yourself back to a positive emotion for better health. Having a sense of humor is one of the most important health behaviors. Think healthy and you'll teach your body to be healthy!

Monday, April 02, 2007

New Body Wrap Machine Helps Lose Inches

If you have inches that just won't budge it may be toxins caught in fat, in other words, cellulite! There is now a machine that will heat up the molecules in toxins and help rid the body of these through sweat and drinking water. I have seen women lose up to 10 inches with one 45 minute session. The really amazing thing is that they are keeping it off! The body wrap machine uses radiant heat that penetrates deep into the body to pull out the toxins.

What exactly is radiant heat? No need to worry--it has nothing to do with either ultraviolet radiation or atomic radiation. Is InfraRed heat safe? Yes…. InfraRed heat is within the same frequency levels as our own body heat and this is in tune with our own energy system. It is therefore safe and compatible with the body by allowing deep heat penetration that is not possible with other methods of heating.

Fitness Spa's Body Wrap System is used for conditions such as inch loss, weight management, improved skin, and cellulite reduction and more. Our Body Wrap machine uses InfraRed radiant energy to directly penetrate the body’s tissues up to a depth of 2 ½. Its energy output is tuned to correspond so closely to the body’s own radiant energy that our bodies absorb close to 93% of the InfraRed waves that reach our skin. This is a great way to relax, listen to music, smell fragrant candles and just de-stress while losing inches. What an age we live in!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Is Your Stomach Stretched??

In weight loss it is important to know the size of your stomach. The stomach is a muscle that can get stretched by too many "all you can eat" meals. The capacily of a normal stomach is about 4 cups of food. However, if it is stretched beyond that you will be hungary until you fill it up. That is why after a big meal in the evening you wake up very hungry. Your stomach has stretched and now is painfully aware that it is needing to be filled up again. If you have a stomach that is stretched 2 or 3 times its size, it is going to want more than the normal portion. If you can eat 4 cups of food and still feel hungry, then your stomach is probably stretched out of porportion. Now for the great news! You can shrink it back quickly by cutting back on the amount you eat and training your stomach to shrink. The body is a marvelous thing and we have to treat it right to stay fit and healthy.

Mollie McCarl
Personal Trainer
Fitness Spa

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

High-Fructose Corn Syrup and Obesity

Here's an interesting article on corn syrup and obesity, excerpted with permission from the new book SUGAR SHOCK! I hope you enjoy it.Mollie McCarl

As High-Fructose Corn Syrup Takes Off, Obesity SoarsConnie Bennett, C.H.H.C., Author, SUGAR SHOCK! (Berkley Books)

SUGAR SHOCK!: How Sweets and Simple Carbs Can Derail Your Life—and How You Can Get It Back on Track by Connie Bennett, with Dr. Stephen Sinatra

In the 1970s and 1980s, most major American food manufacturers began replacing sugar (sucrose, made from sugarcane or beets) with such corn-based sweeteners such as high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS). High-fructose corn syrup now is found in an astonishing array of processed goods, including soft drinks and fruit juices, as well as condiments, breads, cookies, breakfast cereals, pasta sauces, frozen foods, jams, and jellies. Food manufacturers made the switch from cane- and beet-based sugar to corn-based HFCS because it’s far cheaper to produce than sucrose. Not only that, but high-fructose corn syrup is sweeter, is easier to handle during processing, has a longer shelf life, and keeps baked goods soft while giving them a warm toasty color. Interestingly, as the use of high-fructose corn syrup has soared, America’s obesity problem has also spiraled out of control. In fact, journalist Greg Critser, author of the intriguing Fat Land: How Americans Became the Fattest People in the World, observes that the lower-priced HFCS has allowed food producers to increase portion sizes without sacrificing profits. Ultimately, he notes, overconsumption of HFCS is “skewing the national metabolism toward fat storage.” Now, a growing body of research and articles support that statement. Indeed, one examination of our sweetener consumption patterns, which was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found that in a mere 20 years (from 1970 to 1990), consumption of high-fructose corn syrup leaped by more than 1,000 percent, “far exceeding the changes in intake of any other food or food group.” This review of medical literature on the subject, headed up by the internationally renowned obesity and diabetes authority George Bray, M.D., Boyd professor at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center of the Louisiana State University System and professor of medicine at LSU Medical Center, concluded that the "increased use of HFCS in the United States mirrors the rapid increase in obesity.”
SUGAR SHOCK! (Berkley Books) includes more fascinating information that links corn-based fructose with obesity and an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease. The book -- which also dishes other sour news about sweets -- offers helpful tips and tactics to help people to break free of their sugar addiction. You can buy SUGAR SHOCK! here. Check out Connie's provocative, too.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Even Disney Wants Kids to Eat Right

Nutrition should always be a priority for children's health. Finally there is some great interest in putting healthy choices in schools. I thought you might enjoy this article.

Fruit, veg in schools increase with new nutrition policies

By Lorraine Heller

10/19/2006- The recently implemented school wellness policies have started to have an impact on the types of foods children have access to during the day, with schools already offering more fruits and vegetables, according to a report issued this week.
Released by the School Nutrition Association (SNA), A Foundation for the Future outlines key characteristics of local wellness policies approved by the largest 100 school districts in the United States.
Under terms of the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act, by July 1, 2006 every school that participates in the school lunch or school breakfast program- the large majority of US schools- had to have a local wellness policy in place.
The policy, designed to address the problem of childhood obesity, requires that schools set nutrition standards for all foods sold in school, including in vending machines, a la carte lines, and school stores.
Although the wellness policy is not federally regulated and is likely to differ form school to school, it contributes to addressing a loophole that allows the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) to set standards for foods sold in the lunchroom, but forbids it from setting standards for foods sold elsewhere on campus.
And according to SNA, more fruits and vegetables and cafeteria-based nutrition education are just two of the many ways local school wellness policies are helping promote a healthy childhood weight.
The association’s latest report revealed that the “large majority” of the nation’s 100 largest school districts by enrollment are requiring nutrition education, adding recess and tightening nutrition standards.
The Alliance for a Healthier Generation, a joint initiative by former President Bill Clinton and the American Heart Association (AHA), earlier this month teamed up with Kraft Foods, Mars, PepsiCo, Dannon and the Campbell Soup Company to help encourage broad acceptance of the new guidelines by increasing the range of qualifying products available to schools.
The science-based nutritional guidelines promote nutrient-rich foods, fat-free and low-fat dairy products, and place limits on calories, fat, saturated fat, trans fat, sugar and sodium. The guidelines also promote the consumption of fruits, vegetables and whole grain foods.
As part of the commitment, the five leading food companies have said they will reformulate certain products, as well as introduce new lines of healthier snacks for kids.
An earlier agreement within the same alliance resulted in major beverage firms including the Coca-Cola Company, PepsiCo, and Cadbury Schweppes voluntarily agreeing to stop selling high-calorie soft drinks to elementary and middle schools.
Other initiatives outside of schools include a report issued this year by two government offices - the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Department of Health and Human Services - that recommends food companies and the Children's Advertising Review Unit of the set nutrition standards for products marketed to kids.
Even leading kids' entertainment brand Nickelodeon in July announced it was to team up with a number of US food firms to roll out new children-friendly fruit and vegetable products featuring some of its popular cartoon characters.
And in a move set to have major implications on the types of foods marketed to children, Disney this week announced that it will implement new nutritional guidelines for its licensed products.
Based on the US government's Dietary Guidelines for Americans, Disney's new policy means that it will only use its name and characters on kid-focused products that meet specific guidelines, including limits on calories, fat, saturated fat and sugar. It also plans to serve more nutritious options and eliminate trans fats from meals served throughout its entertainment parks.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Interesting Info on Stevia

Stevia is a small shrub native to Paraguay. The native Indians there have used it for over 1500 years as a sweetener, a digestive aid, tonic, and as a topical aid for wounds.

Stevia is non-toxic and nutrient-rich, containing substantial amounts of calcium, phosphorus, sodium, magnesium, zinc, Vitamins A and C and over 100 phytonutrients.
Stevia has been used to reduce cravings for alcohol and tobacco, to normalize blood sugar levels, and to regulate blood pressure. According to research conducted at The Hiroshima University School of Dentistry and the Purdue University Dental Research Group, Stevia retards the formation of plaque and suppresses the growth of cavity-causing bacteria.

Topically, Stevia has many healing capabilities. Applied to a cut or scrape, it stings, but a significant reduction in pain follows, with accelerated healing and reduced scarring. Whole leaf Stevia extract can be used as a face mask - it tightens the skin, smoothes wrinkles and heals skin blemishes and acne. It can also reduce symptoms of dermatitis and eczema as well. Adding Stevia concentrate to shampoos, or applying it to hair after washing, conditions the hair.
Stevia can be purchased in a number of forms - dried leaf form, leaf powder, tea, liquid tincture, extract or concentrate. The less refined the Stevia is, the better. Read labels carefully, as some varieties have additives including alcohol.
The refined form of Stevia, labeled as isolated steviosides, comes in a white powder or liquid extract. These forms are fine and perfectly safe for sweetening, but do not contain all of the health benefits discussed previously.

Stevia makes an excellent sweetener for tea and coffee. It can also be sprinkled on cereals, fruit, added to smoothies, etc. Because of its concentrated sweetness, it is 200-300 times sweeter than sugar, and is therefore difficult to use in baking and cooking at home, although there are conversion charts available. The problem is adjusting the ratio of wet and dry ingredients in a recipe to account for the use of Stevia.

The bottom line is that unrefined stevia is not only safe for use as a sweetener, but has nutritional value as well

Monday, January 22, 2007

Forget the Fad Diets!!!

Fitness Spa has just begun the Biggest Loser Contest and we are looking for excited contestants. Proper nutrition paired with daily exercise is the perfect way to increase your chances of becoming the “Biggest Loser.” Here are some tips to help you achieve your weight loss goals during the contest:

Always remember that fad diets do not get the job done!

If you are counting calories, here is one way to calculate your calorie intake: Decide your ideal body weight then add a zero and that will be the minimum. Be sure you consume no less than 1200 calories.

Since you are exercising, it is important that you eat much more to give your body the nutrients it needs to give you energy and repair and build muscle.

Keep your diet balanced with plenty of protein, fats such as plant oils, and yes, carbohydrates (brain food and energy source.) Complement this plan with 5-10 bottles (16.9 fl oz) of water. Water is necessary to metabolize fat as well as other functions in your body so drink many glasses of pure water. Tea, coffee, diet soda, or other beverages do not count.

Grazing all day on healthy foods is a great way to level blood sugar and keep your metabolism high. Put an end to cravings! Eat small meals or snacks every 3 hours.

Serving size is important. For best results, follow these guidelines:

Protein – 10 grams* per serving

Carbohydrate – 15 grams per serving

Fat – 10 grams per serving

*This is equal to 3 oz. of white meat or fish. Red meat should be avoided for the 6 weeks of competition for best results.

Eat up to 4 servings of protein, up to 4 servings of fats, and up to 6 servings of carbohydrates. On this plan, all dairy is considered a fat, even non-fat products. Fill the rest of your daily diet with unlimited fruits and veggies (but try to eat more veggies than fruits.) Try to eat 4 servings of fruit (medium sized apple or ½ cup chopped) and 5 servings of veggies. Good nutrition is key to weight loss and health. Come by Fitness Spa and get measured for the Biggest Loser Contest

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Toxins deter Weight loss

Can't seem to lose weight? Maybe it is the toxins that have invaded your body.

The average person living in the developed world is now contaminated with at least 500 industrial toxins. We live in a toxic world and carry many toxins within us.

According to Dr. Paula Baillie-Hamilton, who published her work in the 2002 Journal of Alternative and Complimentary Medicine, between the years of 1930 and 2000, the rise in the use of synthetic chemicals matched the rise in the number of overweight and obese adults in the U.S. The liver plays a major role in weight loss and in metabolism functions. When the liver is overloaded (toxic), weight loss efforts may be blocked.

"A liver overloaded with pollutants and toxins cannot efficiently burn body fat," says Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS. "A tired, toxic liver is the number one weight-loss stumbling block."

Everyday, we are exposed to numerous chemicals that can wreak havoc on our health. These chemicals are not only found in the air we breathe, but also in the food we eat, water we drink, homes we live in and in the personal and cosmetic products we use.

Traditionally, overweight and obesity are caused by a number of factors from super-sized portions to sedentary lifestyles. Nowadays, experts believe that one of the underlying reasons for being overweight is an overload of environmental toxins throughout our body. The fewer toxins the body has, the more weight that probably can be lost.

A great way to lose toxins is through a radiant heat sauna which will allow the body to sweat out the chemicals through your pores. At Fitness Spa, we had one girl lose 10 pounds in a week from simply sitting in the sauna for 30 minutes every day. Try our radiant heat sauna free to see if it helps you. Drinking lots of pure water will help flush out toxins while you are sitting in the sauna.