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January 2015

Aleias Gluten Free Foods, LLC Issues Voluntary Recall Of Parmesan Croutons and Classic Croutons



According to a posting on the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) website, Aleias Gluten Free Foods, LLC has issued a voluntary and precautionary recall of certain lots of its 8 ounce Parmesan Croutons and Classic Croutons because they might contain undeclared peanut protein.

The recall was initiated due to the possibility of undeclared peanut protein in the cumin provided by a third-party supplier.

The product is packaged in a brown cardboard box with white text. The Lot Number can be found on the window side of the package.

The potentially affected lot numbers are listed below:

UPC CodeProduct DescriptionLot Numbers
8 55930 00162 3 Aleias Gluten Free Parmesan Croutons 8 oz. 410221, 413121, 416021, 417221, 419211, 510110, 514210
8 55930 00161 6 Aleias Gluten Free Classic Croutons 8 oz. 410221, 413121, 416021, 417221, 419211, 510110, 514210

The recalled products were distributed through web orders and in grocery stores nationwide.

People who are allergic to peanuts risk serious or life threatening injury if they eat the recalled products.

Customers who have purchased the affected product should discard it or return it to the place of purchase for a refund.

"Aleias Gluten Free Foods, LLC is committed to providing the highest quality products. As an allergen food manufacturer, the safety of our consumers is our top priority. For this reason we are initiating this voluntary recall of the products. This recall is being made with the knowledge of the FDA." the company posted in its press release.

To date, there have not been any reported allergic reactions or consumer complaints.

Consumers with questions or concern may call Aleias Gluten Free Foods, LLC at 203-488-5556 during normal hours of operations (Monday-Friday 9:00am-5:00pm EST).

God is a righteous judge, a God who expresses his wrath every day. Psalm 7:11

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Article Reference

FDA Recall -- Firm Press Release


"Aleias Gluten Free Foods, LLC Issues Voluntary Recall Of Parmesan Croutons and Classic Croutons" copyright © Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM). All Rights Reserved.


Common Sense Fitness Tips For Women

Common Sense Fitness Tips For Women

Submitted by: Susan Megge

If you’re like many women, you know that you need to exercise in order to have the body you desire, but you’re just not sure where to begin. And worse, you’re afraid of failure because you’ve started workout routines in the past and somehow never stuck with them.

I inserted a quote on my website which I absolutely love because it really is the key to success. Jim Rohn once said "Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment". Before starting an exercise routine it’s important to understand that discipline is really all you need to accomplish any goal you choose, whether it’s fitness, weight loss or a job promotion. Once you’re disciplined there’s no doubt that you will succeed.

To help you get started I’ve outlined some fitness tips that have proven to be extremely beneficial.

• Get Motivated -- As with any lifestyle change, success is only possible if you are motivated to make that change and are willing to do so for you. Get yourself into the mindset that says "I can do this and I will succeed." With the right attitude, failure is impossible and success is the only possible outcome. My former boss always told his employees to avoid using the "T" word: "Try." When you say you'll "try" to do something it really means you're not going to do all that you possibly can to successfully reach your goal. Just know that you can do whatever it is you put your mind to, especially when it comes to getting fit.

• Consult a Physician -- Generally, if you're under 45 and in good health you probably don't need to consult a physician before you begin your exercise routine. If, however, you are over 45 and have any type of medical condition it's best to consult your healthcare provider prior to beginning any type of physical activity or exercise program. You'll want to avoid doing too much too soon, as this may lead to serious injury.

• Join a Gym -- By joining a gym you are making the commitment to become fit. Don't say "I'll start Monday" because there's no time like the present. When you allow yourself the extra time to continue being a couch potato and make the statement that you'll begin your exercise routine in a few days what you're really saying is "I'm not motivated and I'm just too lazy to make a commitment. Period." Go on the Internet and/or open a phone book and start calling local gyms in your area. Once you've visited these facilities and have found one whose equipment is consistent with your workout, join immediately and begin exercising that same day.

• Consistency is the Key -- If you want results from your exercise routine you need to be consistent. In other words, attending your gym five days a week for the first two weeks, taking a week off and then showing up once or twice a week for the next two weeks will simply not bring results. Consistency really is the key to a successful exercise routine. Once you've made the commitment to become fit, you need to be present for that commitment. View exercising as if it's a job -- something you need to do. Or, look at it this way: if you need dialysis every single day of your life in order to live, you will make the time for your dialysis treatment. Why wouldn't you do the same to be healthy and fit?

• Small Steps to Success -- It's so very important to keep in mind that every single accomplishment you make, no matter how small or large, is indeed another step toward your success. Your goal may be to look like a super model, but remember that it's going to take a succession of small steps before you reach your ultimate goal. It's best to measure your success with each small step or accomplishment you make because this will keep you motivated. In other words, if your goal is to lose ten inches from your thighs and you've lost a half-inch after 30 days of exercise, don't think of this as a failure because it's not; this small step has actually taken you that much closer to successfully reaching your goal.

• Be Properly Equipped -- I can't stress enough how much easier your exercise routine will be if you have the proper equipment with you when you arrive at the gym. Here's a list of items you'll want to have with you when you begin exercising.

1. A small hand towel for excess sweat
2. A pair of safe comfortable running shoes, preferably with a cushioned sole
3. iPod© or small music player (especially good for cardio workouts)
4. Comfortable, cool and stretchy clothing that allows for easy movement
5. Large bottle of very cold water
6. A positive “can-do” attitude

Stick with these tips and you’ll no doubt be feeling and looking exactly as you desire; you will indeed have crossed the bridge and found yourself on the other side – accomplishment – there’s no better feeling.

About the Author: Susan Megge is the founder of, a website designed to assist women as they approach and experience menopause. Susan, a health and fitness expert started experiencing symptoms of menopause several years ago and researched various avenues to deal with these symptoms naturally.

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Probar Base Frosted Peanut Butter Bars Recall Because It May Contain Undeclared Milk Allergen



According to a posting on the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) website, PROBAR LLC of Salt Lake City, Utah has begun a voluntary recall of its PROBAR Base® Frosted Peanut Butter Bars because it might contain an undeclared milk allergen.

The company said the voluntary recall only involves Frosted Peanut Butter flavored PROBAR Base® Bars in 2.46 ounce packages distributed online and to retail stores nationwide.

People who are allergic to or severely sensitive to milk run the risk of serious or even life threatening injury if they consume this product.

PROBAR® is voluntarily recalling three lots that may contain the allergen:

ProductLot Codes Beginning with:Expiration DateUnit UPC12 Count Box UPC
Frosted Peanut Butter PROBAR Base 24289 EXP# 01/16/2016 8-53152-10060-5 8-53152-10061-2
Frosted Peanut Butter PROBAR Base 24188 EXP# 10/07/2015 8-53152-10060-5 8-53152-10061-2
Frosted Peanut Butter PROBAR Base 24160 EXP# 09/09/2015 8-53152-10060-5 8-53152-10061-2

To locate the Lot Codes:

  1. Individual unit Lot Code and Expiration Date: printed on the outer seal of the wrapper
  2. 12-unit case Lot Code and Expiration Date: printed outside of the box

The company says that retailers and distributors have been notified to remove the product from store shelves.

According to the posting on the FDA's website, the recall was prompted by two consumer complaints.

"The highest priority of PROBAR® is the safety and quality of its products. PROBAR® is working in close cooperation with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to fully resolve this issue. " the company said.

Consumers can call 1-800-921-2294, Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mountain Time, or email for more information and how to return the product for a full refund.


For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7

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Article Reference

FDA Recall -- Firm Press Release


"Probar Base Frosted Peanut Butter Bars Recall Because It May Contain Undeclared Milk Allergen" copyright © 2015 Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM). All Rights Reserved.



How Running Slower Will Make You Run Faster

How Running Slower Will Make You Run Faster

Submitted by: Curt Shryack

You have no doubt heard of long slow distance runs or LSD for short. I prefer to call these types of runs, running slow to run fast. This weekly long run is the cornerstone of all distance running programs. By adding the use of heart rate monitors a runner can improve the effectiveness of long runs significantly.

A simple formula is needed to calculate the effort level of these runs. The formula 180bpm minus the user’s age was popularized by the great triathlete Mark Allen. Using this formula Mark Allen went onto to build his enormous aerobic capacity.

(180bm - your age = heart rate limit)

Example: 180bpm
- 35 years old
= 145 bpm heart rate limit

After your heart rate limit for your long run is calculated you are ready to run. Always keep your heart rate under your limit. If your heart rate will not stay below this number either slow down your pace or terminate the workout. Going above the heart rate limit will not increase your aerobic capacity.

Many athletes think that running at a slower pace will make them slow runners. In fact running too hard every day will cause over training. The body needs time to get stronger and adapt to the new stresses. Running at this lower heart rate three times a week and adding some faster runs will improve your conditioning dramatically.

An added benefit using this formula is mental toughness. Many runners who aspire to run marathons can use this formula on their marathon training runs. By staying in the aerobic zone training runs will last longer before exhaustion occurs. And the mental toughness required running marathons will also happen.

As the aerobic system improves your ability to run harder paces will also improve. This is why I call this type of running, running slow to run fast. The body’s ability to use oxygen is a limiting factor of running pace.

By running one longer distance run each week of over 90 minutes. Adding a couple easy running days at your target heart rate, plus different types of speed work you will become faster guaranteed.

About the Author: author of Run2Fast

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Chicken Steak Products Recalled Due to Misbranding and Undeclared Allergens



The USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has announced that Aspen Foods Div. of Koch Foods, Inc., a Chicago, Illinois company, is recalling approximately 1,140 pounds of chicken steak products due to misbranding and undeclared allergens.

The recalled products contain soy and wheat, known allergens which aren't declared on the product label.

The FSIS has designated this a Class I Recall of High Health Risk.

The ChicNSteakes items were produced on December 13, 2014.The products subject to recall are:

  • 2 lb. selling unit boxes containing vacuum-packages of “Market Day Teriyaki Flavored ChicNSteakes.” in boxes labeled “Market Day Lemon Pepper ChicNSteakes.”

These products bear the establishment number “P-1358” inside the USDA mark of inspection.

According to the USDA, the inner package and the selling unit boxes have a Julian Date of “3464” and the outer box will have a pack date of 12/13/14.

The agency says the items produced were shipped to distribution locations in Illinois for further distribution.

According to the USDA, the company received consumer complaints that the Lemon Pepper flavored ChicNSteakes boxes actually contain Chicken Teriyaki flavored ChicNSteakes.

Teriyaki ChicNSteakes contain the allergens soy and wheat, which are not in the Lemon Pepper flavored ChicNSteakes.

Neither the FSIS nor the company have received no reports of adverse reactions as a result of eating these products.

The agency advises anyone with concerns about injury or illness should contact a healthcare professional.

Consumers and media with questions about the recall can contact Mike Fields, Division President, at (847) 384-5940.


For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:10

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Article Reference

Illinois Firm Recalls Chicken Steak Products Due to Misbranding and Undeclared Allergens


"Chicken Steak Products Recalled Due to Misbranding and Undeclared Allergens" copyright © 2015 Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM). All Rights Reserved.



Fast Food Chains Continue To Serve Large Portion Sizes



Fast food chains still serve up large portion sizes to consumers, new research shows. According to a report published in the journal Preventing Chronic Disease, there's little difference between portion sizes of fast foods in 1996 compared to those of 2013.

This suggests that while attention has been brought to bear on portion sizes and their possible connection to obesity and cardiovascular disease, American fast food patrons continue to pay for and receive large food portions.

Our country is deeply embroiled in epidemic obesity and associated cardiovascular diseases including diabetes and heart disease.

Americans consumers spend billions of dollars each year eating out at fast food restaurants, consuming foods which tend to be high in empty calories.

Thus it makes sense that we should learn more about how much impact fast food restaurants are contributing to American obesity.

Researchers at Tufts University in Boston, Massachusetts set out to do just that. Alice H. Lichtenstein, DSc, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University led a research team which looked at fast food data from 1996 to 2013 for the most frequently ordered fast food items at 3 highly successful national fast food chains which account for 34% of sales dollars of the top American fast food restaurants.

Hoping to find information about trends, Lichtenstein and her colleagues collected data on sodium, energy, saturated fat and trans fat from the most popular foods ordered from the 3 selected national fast food chains - all of which served up similar food items.

According to the report, the most popular fast foods ordered were the following:

  • French fries (fried potatoes; small, medium, and large)
  • cheeseburger (approximately 2 ounces and 4 ounces, uncooked beef weight)
  • grilled chicken sandwich (1 available size)
  • regular cola drink (small, medium, and large)

Using the WayBack Machine (a web resource tool which collects historical data on websites), Lichtenstein et al gathered information about energy (kcal/portion), sodium (mg/portion), saturated fat (g/portion), and trans fat (g/portion).

This data was helpful in aiding the researchers to obtain the answers they needed, and what they found says much about America's attitude about food and obesity.


Fast Food Restaurants Continue To Serve Up Large Meals

From 1996 to 2013, there wasn't much a difference in portion sizes offered by the 3 national food chains selected by Lichtenstein et al.

When the team looked at french fries, they noted that in 2013, represented 25% of the daily energy requirements of an adult (assuming the person would need 2000 kilocalories per day). This data held up across all 3 national fast food chains.

The researchers noted that while there seemed to be an increase in portion sizes during 2002, that trend appeared to ahve settled down.

Nonetheless, the fast food chains selected for the study continued to serve large portion sizes. This suggests to me that Americans enjoy eating large amounts of food, even when they don't need it.

According to the data Lichtenstein and her colleagues collected, a large size bundled meal of large cheeseburger, large French fries, and regular cola beverage made up 65% to 80% of a 2,000 calorie diet.

Unfortunately when people eat heavy meals, they're also eating a lot of saturated fat and salt.

They found that for meals served at all 3 fast food chains, the salt content of a 4-ounce cheeseburger approached or surpased half the 2,300-mg-per-day target and 75% of the 1,500-mg-per-day target.

It gets even worse for a large sized meal, the sodium content ranged from 63% to 91% of a 2,300-mg-per-day recommendation and 97% to 139% of a 1,500-mg-per-day recommendation.

By contrast, Dietary Guidelines for Americans people suggest the general population limit sodium intake to 2,300 mg per day and some subpopulations shouldn't consume more than 1,500 mg of sodium per day.

When they looked at saturated fat, they found that the saturated fat content of a large-sized meal in 2013 was 61% to 80% of the recommended 10% of energy upper limit (22 g/2,000 kcal), and 104% and 135% of the recommended 6% of energy upper limit (13 g/2,000 kcal).

The researchers noted that fast food chains are starting to steer away from trans fat.

According to Lichtenstein and her colleagues: "The trans fat content of the large bundled meal that includes a cheeseburger represents 50% to 75% of the current recommendation, although the trans fat content of cheeseburgers comes from that naturally present in ruminant fat."

They credit the decline in trans fat to a reduction in the use of partially hydrogenated fat which was brought about by public pressure and local mandates.


Similarly Labeled Fast Food Menus Don't Have The Same Amount Of Calories

They also noted that "an order of small French fries at Chain B provides 110 kcal and 320 mg sodium more than the same item at Chain A."

Essentially this amounts to "an extra 100 kcal per day without compensation translates to a 6 to 7 kg weight gain per year."

The authors believe that these differences between the energy, saturated fat and sodium content of menus that are similarly labeled by the 3 fast food chains may go completely unnoticed by consumers.

I think that people will choose healthier foods if they're given the right information.

Researchers from the New York City Department of Health and Human Hygiene in a random survey of patrons of several fast food restaurants in New York, found that people who read food menus tended to order fast foods with lower calories (read my article Fast Food Customers Really Do Pay Attention To Calorie Information, Research Study Finds).

Peer pressure may influence the foods we choose and how much of it we eat (read my article Are The People You Associate With Secretly Making You Fat?).

While some folks think that proliferation of fast food restaurants in our neighborhoods is contributing to the obesity epidemic (read my article Uh Oh! Eating Out Is Making The Whole World Fat), scientific research refutes this notion (read my article Can Living Near Fast Food Restaurants Cause You To Gain Weight?).

Lichtenstein et al believe that fast foods have a detrimental effect o our health citing evidence that "Consumption of foods and beverages from fast-food restaurants is positively associated with body fatness and coronary heart disease mortality."

I agree in as much as fast foods contain high amounts of salt, fat and calories. But personal choice is also something that we need to take into consideration. People can demand healthier foods.

After carefully analyzing the data, the researchers offered their suggestions for how Americans might make better food choices at fast food restaurants:"When developing strategies that help consumers better control their energy intakes and intakes of other nutrients, additional factors — such as total caloric intake, frequency of eating occasions, number of items eaten at any occasion, specific menu choices, and limiting energy-containing beverages — should be addressed. People should be encouraged to take advantage of the point-of-purchase menu labeling provided at fast-food establishments and should consult websites that contain nutrition information."

Since the fast food industry is all about profits, if people become better educated about the adverse effects that eating foods saturated with unhealthy fat and salt has on the human body, and those consumers tell the fast food industry that they are no longer willing to purchase such foods, the industry will have no choice but to change.

But until that day, it will continue to be business as usual for the fast food industry.


Life is hard, but please remember that your brothers and sisters in Christ are suffering the same hardships that you are suffering. But God will exalt us in His own good time. 1 Peter:9-10

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Article References

Urban LE, Roberts SB, Fierstein JL, Gary CE, & Lichtenstein AH (2014). Temporal Trends in Fast-Food Restaurant Energy, Sodium, Saturated Fat, and Trans Fat Content, United States, 1996-2013. Preventing chronic disease, 11 PMID: 25551184

Are The People You Associate With Secretly Making You Fat?

Uh Oh! Eating Out Is Making The Whole World Fat

Can Living Near Fast Food Restaurants Cause You Gain Weight?


"Fast Food Chains Continue To Serve Large Portion Sizes" copyright © 2015 Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM). All Rights Reserved.



From Fat to Fit

From Fat to Fit

Submitted by: Jack Hazelton

The journey from being fat to becoming fit is an arduous one, with many twists and turns on the way. The most important aspect of this journey is to have faith in oneself and stay motivated.

Staying motivated:
A good majority of people fail in their fitness plans for the simple reason that they cannot stay motivated throughout the entire program. Some tips to help with motivation are as follows:
- Goals should be well defined and achievable
- Make use of favorite quotes or lines of songs to find motivation
- Find an exercise partner if working out alone is not enjoyable
- Write down current weight and size proportions
- Maintain a food and weight diary
Fitness: 2 pronged approach
Many people fail in their journey towards fitness simply because they do not get the basics right.

Achieving fitness depends on two crucial aspects:
1. Proper diet
2. Regular exercise regimen

Diet: The basics
By the term ‘diet’, what is meant a proper form of nutrition, the kind of nutrition that supplies all the necessary nutrients in their right proportions to the body. It does not mean starving the body and depending on nutrient depletion to achieve weight loss.

Popular weight loss diets advocate nutrient depletion as the shortest route to weight loss. However, this route is fraught with dangers of many kinds. First, there is always the risk of ill health accompanying insufficient nutrition that manifests itself as tiredness, crankiness, frustration, skin problems, hair problems and dieter’s breath, to name a few. Punishing the body is by no way the best means to accomplish the fitness goal.

When trying to lose weight, it is important to watch the number of calories finding their way into the body. To lose weight, it is necessary to take in fewer calories than expended by the body. This calorie deficit ensures weight loss.

Instead of starving the body, feeding it the right kinds of foods and avoiding wrong foods must be the target. Proper foods include plenty of fresh vegetables, fruits and wholesome sources of complex carbohydrates, proteins and fats.

The daily diet must contain carbohydrates, proteins and fats in the ratio of 40:30:30. Attention must be paid to the source of these nutrients.

Hydration is a vital part of the diet program. It is important to take in 8-10 glasses of water. Water helps with detoxification and hunger control.

Exercise ensures the optimal burning of calories. To achieve the correct calorie balance, it is important to counterbalance the food taken in with regular exercise.

Often overweight people focus entirely on aerobics exercises. Such an exercise program is at best incomplete and at worst quite unsuccessful in ensuring total fitness.

A good exercise plan is that which combines cardiovascular exercises with weight training.

Cardio – Aerobic exercises are best suited for weight loss. Some of the most effective exercises include walking, running, jogging, swimming, riding a stationary bike and so on. For aerobic exercises to produce results, it is necessary to perform exercises within the fat burning zone for at least 20-30 minutes. Cardio may be performed five days a week.

The best time to do aerobic exercise is when your metabolism is at its most efficient. For some folks, this is early in the morning because this is when they feel energized. However, for those who feel totally drained out in the mornings, a better time would be in the evenings.

Cardio on an empty stomach is a definite no! Doing so shrinks muscles, not fat.

Strength training – Weight training is necessary for a number of reasons. It helps add muscle mass to the body and improves the body’s resting metabolic rate. That is, it ensures that the body becomes a fat burning machine. Furthermore, it strengthens the bones, muscles and tendons.

It is important to train all the major muscle groups of the body. However, muscles become strong when they are rested after vigorous training. Therefore, it is necessary to alternate workout with proper rest.

The best way to lose weight is to combine proper eating habits with an effective exercise regime. This way, weight loss becomes quicker, and it becomes possible to become fit for life.

About the Author: For advice on health and fitness, visit Weight Training Tips to learn about all aspects of weight training and the equipment needed to include weight training gloves.

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How to Get Ripped in Weeks - What is the Best Shortcut Out There?

How to Get Ripped in Weeks - What is the Best Shortcut Out There?

Submitted by: Alex Rockson

For a majority of guys who go to the gym, their main goal is knowing how to get ripped in weeks. Yes, there are some who take their body building hobby seriously and have a goal to be "big," but this would only be a small percentage of the gym going populace. Most men do not really want to look like Arnold Schwarzenegger; they just want to be lean enough that they could see the definition of their muscles and flaunt their torsos proudly on the beach or if they just feel like going shirtless. It is no secret that people go to the gym is to improve their appearance, and in the process, make them feel better. This can certainly be done of they know how to get ripped.

But there are a lot of theories that people put forward to get ripped. There are people who say that the right diet is the key. Some say an exercise program is the key. There are also those who say that there are supplements that will hasten the process of getting ripped. But then, it should be realized that getting a ripped body does not happen overnight. There are two things that are required: an investment in time and an investment in effort. However, if you have a smart approach in getting ripped, you will certainly save time and will get the body you desire in less time than someone who doesn’t have a good plan.

As said earlier, diet, supplements and an exercise programs have been pointed out as main methods for getting a ripped body. But rather as viewing them as separate methods, the most effective way on how to get ripped in weeks is a combination of these three factors. These three factors, if followed closely, will surely lead to success in getting a ripped body.

But then, diet is still the most important of the three factors in getting ripped. But then, it should be noted that there is, no singular diet that lets people get ripped without any effort. Instead, following a combination of well-structured diet plans will let someone achieve those physical goals. After all, following only one kind of diet through the entire process of body sculpting will most likely result in failure. Let’s face it: people will not exactly be excited or motivated with routine diet plan. There needs to be some excitement and variety in a diet plan so that people will be enticed to follow.

Of course, in order to get ripped, a desired weight should be maintained. Consuming fewer calories may be in order for some people, while choosing a more protein-intensive diet is better for those who are already in the correct weight. But another thing to note is that in order to get ripped, weight from fat should be the one lost. This is why protein is more important, as it will aid muscle development and not really contribute to fat weight, with the rest of the calories to come from good fat (omega fatty acids) and complex carbohydrates. Alas, when knowing how to get ripped in weeks, you should consume more calories from protein sources during work out days, for supplies of glycogen to be present for the muscles to grow stronger when recovering.

About the Author: Are you looking for more information regarding muscle building quickly ? Visit today!

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The No Diet Way To Lose Weight And Keep It Off

The No Diet Way To Lose Weight And Keep It Off

Submitted by: Meri Raffetto

Yes, you read it right… no diets.

The first step in this weight management program is to gather all of your old fad diets, quick weight loss remedies, and “magic cures”. Once you have them all together in a nice, neat pile- throw them into the trash!

One thing we have learned in the last 30 years is diets don’t work and actually can make things worse. Fad diets may provide short term weight loss but they are generally too difficult to stick with for a lifetime. The majority of people who lose weight on fad diets regain that weight within 3 to 5 years. Over time this yo-yo dieting effect can slow your metabolism, the way our bodies burn the calories from the food that we eat. Most fad diets require you to significantly restrict your caloric intake by limiting or even eliminating specific foods from your diet. They lead you to believe that it is these specific foods that are causing you to gain weight. The fact is; a cookie or a slice of French bread is not responsible for weight gain. It is the total number of calories that you consume in a day compared to the amount of calories you use as energy. The calories you don’t use as energy turn into stored fat and over time this translates into more body weight.

Yes, its true consuming excess carbohydrates can result in insulin spikes which can lead you to store fat more readily and stimulate your appetite. However, does this mean that everyone in America is eating too many carbohydrates? Not necessarily. Does this mean we need to completely eliminate all carbohydrates from our diet? No. It means we need to learn how to eat the right kind of carbohydrates and the right amount.

It’s also true that eating excess fat can make us gain weight because fat carries more calories than protein and carbohydrates, but does this mean that everyone’s issue is too much fat? Once again, no. Therefore, we must approach weight management on an individual basis because not everyone is eating too many calories from bread. Just the same, not everyone is consuming too many calories from cookies. We are all individuals and our eating habits are all unique which is why the one size fits all diet plans don’t work. The ultimate key to success is balance.

Balance is providing the appropriate amount of calories, nutrients, and (don’t forget) enjoyment from our meals. In a balanced diet, there are no perfect days, no foods are omitted, and you don’t have to starve yourself. It may simply be that you’ve been eating too many refined carbohydrates and too little fat. This may have stimulated your appetite and caused you to consume more than your body needs. Or vice versa, it may be that you are consuming too many fats and too little fruits and vegetables which can cause you to have a high calorie level with a fairly small intake of food.

Perhaps you’ve been eating the right balance but with too large of portion sizes. These are the kinds of things that throw us off balance and cause us to consume more calories than we utilize for energy.

Let’s take an example:

Unbalanced Day

Breakfast: skip (too busy)
Large latte
Snack: chips from vending machine
Lunch: (restaurant) hamburger and large French fries
Dinner: 8 oz steak and 2 cups mashed potatoes
Dessert: large bowl of ice-cream (1-2 cups)

Meal Makeover

Breakfast: bowl of oatmeal with blueberries, 1 cup low fat milk
Snack: apple, 1 oz peanuts
Lunch: (restaurant) turkey sandwich on whole grain bread with a bowl vegetable soup
Dinner: 3 oz steak (size of a deck of cards), 1 cup mashed potatoes, and a large salad w/1 TB vinaigrette dressing
Dessert: small bowl of frozen yogurt or sorbet (1/2- 1 cup)

The original meals were heavy in high fat foods, large in portion sizes, (beef, French fries, chips, and ice-cream) and low in fiber. The balance was off. By making these changes we saved approximately 800 calories while still enjoying steak, mashed potatoes, and dessert! Not to mention you get to eat more when you incorporate more plant based foods since they are much lower in calories. We also improved the nutrient content by adding more fiber/vitamins/minerals/and antioxidants with increased fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

Take simple steps to make positive changes that will last a lifetime.

© Meri Raffetto, 2004

About the Author: Owner of Real Living Nutrition Services, Meri Raffetto is a recognized professional in the area of nutrition and wellness. She specializes in weight management and cardiovascular nutrition and offers online programs to help people reach their health goals. For more information visit

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Northern Tier Bakery Issues Allergy Alert on Potential Undeclared Peanut in Twix Bismarck doughnuts



According to a posting on the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) website, due "to the possibility of an undeclared peanut allergen in the Twix topping sourced from a third party" Northern Tier Bakery LLC of St. Paul Park, Minnesota is voluntarily recalling Twix Bismarck doughnuts. 

According to the posting the Twix Bismarck is a white frosted doughnut with a chopped Twix topping.

The product was distributed and sold between January 1, 2015, and January 14, 2015, at retail convenience stores in Wisconsin and

According to the posting, production of the Twix Bismarck has been suspended.

People who are allergic to peanuts or have a severe sensitivity to peanuts risk serious or even life threatening injury if the eat the Twix Bismarck.

According to the posting on FDA's website, the recall was started after peanut allergen was discovered in the chopped Twix product distributed to Northern Tier Bakery by a third party in packaging that didn't indicate the presence of peanuts.

Even though no illnesses have been reported due to people eating the recaled product, Northern Tier Bakery voluntarily issued a recall out of "an abundance of caution" and to insure customer safety.

Consumers who have purchased a Twix Bismarck are urged to return it to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers may call 1-855-468-6972 with any questions.

Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you. 2 Thessalonians 3:16

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Article Reference

FDA Recall -- Firm Press Release


"Northern Tier Bakery Issues Allergy Alert on Potential Undeclared Peanut in Twix Bismarck doughnuts" copyright © Living Fit, Healthy and Happy(SM). All Rights Reserved.