Tag Archive: arizona

Don’t Fall for These Five Food Marketing Tricks

Low calorie, fat free, low sugar, gluten free, all natural and the list goes on.  Peruse the aisles of any grocery store and you will find yourself inundated by a bevy of food marketing buzzwords.  At first glance, these eye catching labels may convince you that consuming these foods will lead to weight loss or improved health. However, without reading the fine print, you may be falling prey to marketing trickery.  Here are some labels to look out for and tips on how to read between the lines. 

 

  • All Natural:  Seeing the words “all natural” stamped on the front of a box may entice some people to choose that product over another.  However, buyer beware.  All natural does not necessarily mean healthier.  Sugar laden foods can sport this label, but it’s only because the sugar is made from natural sources such as sugarcane and corn. Medifast Weight Control

 

  • Organic:  While there are certain USDA regulations around labeling food “organic”, such regulations refer solely to the standards by which the food was grown or processed. The absence of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides are among several standards upheld by the USDA.  A label that reads “made with organic” means that only 70% of the ingredients are held to organic standards. Regardless of whether a label reads “certified organic”, “100% organic”, or “made with organic”, the translation is not always a healthy one. Organic foods can still be packed with fat, calories, and sugar.

 

  • Calories Per Serving: A frequent technique used to promote foods to those who may be trying to shed a few pounds is the “only 100 calories per serving” or other low-cal label. This can seem attractive to calorie counting folks, however it is important to note that the lower calorie count can be a simple function of tiny and unrealistic serving sizes.  Any food that is consumed in minute amounts will be lower in calories so be aware of the quantity attached to calorie count.

 

  • Sugar Free:  The label says “sugar free” so it must be good for you right?  Think again!  Sugar free often indicates the presence of artificial sweeteners and other unhealthy substitutes to compensate for the more bland flavor that comes from being free of sugar. 

 

  • canstockphoto28190771Fat Free or Low Fat: The absence of fat often equates to the absence of flavor.  Therefore, foods labeled “fat free” or “low fat” often contain lots of added sugar to make up for the lost flavor. 

 

When it comes to making healthy food shopping decisions, always be weary of marketing labels and delve deeper by reading FDA regulated nutritional labels and ingredient lists. Pay attention to serving size to be sure that low calorie doesn’t mean two bites and you’re done. 

Also, be aware that ingredients are listed in order of quantity so the first few ingredients make up the majority of the food’s contents.  Looking beyond marketing techniques and really understanding how to eat right can be daunting, but the experts at Medifast Weight Control Centers can help. 

 

Please call today (602) 996-9669 for your complimentary consultation so that we can support you in learning how to eat for good health and ideal weight!

Five Messages Trainers Want to Share about Weight Loss

 

Losing weight is one of the most common goals that personal trainers hear from their clients.  Many people, however, approach weight loss with a misperception of what goes into sustaining it for the long term. Here are things that trainers wish their clients knewcanstockphoto1869885 about achieving their weight loss goals.

 

  • Starvation is not the answer:  By the time a person decides to commit to weight loss, they are typically fed up and wanting to
    shed the excess weight as quickly as possible. This can lead to the perception that food is the enemy, which is absolutely not the case!  Not eating enough food can actually slow the metabolism, making it harder to lose and maintain a healthy weight for the long term.  Eating nutritious, moderately portioned meals and snacks throughout the day is the best way to keep the metabolism burning fat and calories.

 

  • Working out is not the most important part of the equation:  Without making the proper changes to diet, working out will not result in sustainable weight loss.  Losing weight is dependent approximately 75% upon food intake and 25% upon exercise. Hundreds of weight loss studies have concluded that people achieve the best results through altering their diets.  This is not to suggest that exercise isn’t an important component, however it is much easier to reduce calories than to have to spend hours in the gym burning them. 

 

  • Trainers aren’t necessarily experts in nutrition:  There are some trainers who go the extra mile to become educated in nutrition, but a registered dietitian studies an average of four years to get a degree. Don’t count canstockphoto4327742on your trainer to be the expert in nutrition and weight loss.  Seek out properly qualified professionals to help you establish and monitor healthy eating habits.

 

  • Lifting weights will do more for you than cardio:  Many people equate cardio with weight loss, however the experts will tell you that building muscle is a more effective way to burn fat and calories.  As muscle mass increases, so too will the rate at which the body metabolizes calories even when at rest.  This is not to say that cardio shouldn’t be a part of working out and losing weight, but is shouldn’t be the main ingredient if weight loss is the primary goal.

 

  • Slow and steady equals lasting success:  Wanting to see instant results is human nature, however weight loss of one to two pounds a week is the recipe for maintaining weight over time. While losing weight overnight may at first seem appealing, it ultimately ends in frustration as it slows the metabolism, making it nearly impossible to maintain a healthy weight.

 

Weight loss and long term maintenance are dependent upon the right combination of activity and dietary changes.  It takes commitment to both to see lasting results,  but exercise alone will likely not be enough. The compassionate and knowledgeable professionals of Medifast Weight Control Centers are well versed in what it takes to achieve long term weight loss success. 

 

Please call today for your complimentary consultation to see how Medifast can support, guide and help you in your weight loss journey.

Six Reasons Why Spring is an Easier Time to Lose Weight

The weather is heating up and the days of being able to cover up excess weight with layers of clothing are behind us.  Having a great weight loss motivator like that is half the battle, but the determination to take action and the dedication to stick with a plan are still both needed. The great news is that spring has some natural advantages that make losing weight easier than other times of the year.  Here’s why:

  • Abundant Daylight:  After getting off of work during the winter, the sun is setting and the cold, dark weather makes it tempting to head straight home to curl up on the couch.  In contrast, the plentiful sunshine of spring provides an energetic boost that compels you to keep moving after the workday is done. 

 

  • Increased Vitamin D Levels:   Having more opportunity to be in the sun increases Vitamin D levels in our bodies.  According to a study done by the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, increased Vitamin D levels has been shown to promote weight loss more than just diet and exercise alone.

 

  • Outdoor Exercise Burns More Calories:   People have been found to exercise more rigorously and for longer periods of time when exercising outdoors.  Spring is a great time to move your workout routine outside where you will easily shed more pounds.

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  • Beautiful Weather Decreases Emotional Eating:   Dark winter days can cause emotions to dip along with the temperatures, which leads many of us straight to the fridge for those comforting, but calorie laden foods. The warm, sunny days of spring produce a natural high making us much less likely to rely upon food as a mood booster.

 

  • Hot Weather Decreases Appetite:  When we metabolize food, our body temperature increases.  Therefore, in the colder months, we are biologically programmed to eat more so that we stay warm.  On the other hand, during the warmer weather the body works harder to keep cool so the appetite is naturally suppressed.

 

  • Healthy Foods are in Season:  Vegetables like arugula, artichokes, spinach, watercress are in season.  Sweet delicious strawberries are also at their best.  What these foods have in common is their dark green leaves, which are most effective at lowering insulin, which burns fat! 

 

There is no better time than now to take advantage of the natural ways that spring promotes weight loss.  Start moving toward your weight loss goals right away by calling the compassionate and knowledgeable professionals of Medifast Weight Control Centers.  During your complimentary consultation you will learn how we can help you achieve your weight loss goals more easily than ever.

Call us at (602) 996-9669 today!

Four Ways Consuming Alcohol Sabotages Weight Loss

Alcohol consumption is a societally ingrained part of most social gatherings. People have also come to rely upon it in solitude, as a tool for unwinding at the end of a stressful day.  Although commonly used as a social lubricant and stress reliever, alcohol can lead to a host of health concerns. Today, we will focus on how alcohol can be a primary saboteur of achieving or maintaining your ideal weight.canstockphoto45753091

 

  1. Increases Caloric Consumption: Alcohol contains almost twice the number of calories per gram than proteins or carbohydrates. This highly concentrated source of calories often results in greater caloric consumption than opting for a nutritious meal. In addition, the nutritionally devoid calories of alcohol are being layered on top of the nutritionally necessary calories needed to fuel the body. Eliminate the alcohol and focus on giving your body the nutrient rich calories it needs to run at full potential.

 

  1. Stimulates Appetite: The empty calories provided by alcohol leave the body yearning for more carbohydrate and sodium rich foods. This happens because the body depletes its stores of carbohydrates to metabolize the alcohol, triggering cravings for more carbohydrates. Alcohol also has a diuretic effect, which results in electrolyte loss. This stimulates the body’s natural inclination to replenish what has been lost by eating high sodium foods such as chips and dip. If you eliminate alcohol from your diet, you will be less tempted to consume more food than what your body actually needs.

 

  1. Lowers Inhibitions: We may enter into a social engagement with the intent of making healthy food choices, but adding alcohol to the mix may cause those good intentions to go canstockphoto46175417up in smoke right along with your aspirations of losing weight. Alcohol lowers inhibitions leading not only to poor food choices, but also to overindulgence in all the wrong foods. Eliminating alcohol will help keep you in the driver’s seat when it comes to making health conscious choices.

 

  1. Slows Metabolism: Since the body can’t store alcohol, it must metabolize it right away.  This may sound ideal at first, until you understand how it works. Since body’s energy is being used to metabolize alcohol, this inhibits its ability to metabolize fats and sugars.  This ultimately slows the metabolism and leads to weight gain.  Pushing the alcohol away and nourishing your body with nutritious food choices will help to keep your metabolism running optimally.

 

If achieving your ideal weight is a priority, it’s best to decline the alcoholic beverages and instead opt for a sparkling water or diet soda.  The nutritional experts at Arizona Medifast Weight Control Centers can help educate and support you as you make this and other lifestyle changes on your weight loss journey. Please call today at (602) 996-9669 to schedule a complimentary consultation with our compassionate and knowledgeable team.

How Water Can Spring Your Weight Loss into Action this Spring

It’s that time of year again!  The sun is out, the temperatures are rising and the layers of clothing are being shed.  So many of us are scrambling to figure out how to shed that winter weight fast! While there are no quick fixes, water can be a significant ingredient toward helping you drop some pounds. Here are some ways that water can contribute to the quest for a leaner version of yourself for the warmer months ahead.

Reduces Appetite: Before you decide to raid the kitchen pantry, grab a glass or two of water.  Many canstockphoto45942965times the sensation we perceive to be hunger is actually thirst and water may be all that’s needed to satiate you.  If it is actually hunger you’re feeling, you should still make it habit to have one or two glasses of water before meals and snacks.  This will produce greater feelings of fullness and therefore decrease your desire to consume excessive calories.

Eliminates Unnecessary Calorie Intake:  One of the most common contributors to weight gain comes not from the calories we eat, but rather those that we drink.  A twelve ounce can of soda has approximately 160 calories and although juice may have more nutritional value,  it is loaded with sugar and has just as many calories as soda! If you’re thinking about having a frozen alcoholic beverage, you may want to think twice.  A pina colada will cost you around 500 calories!  By making water your beverage of choice, you will be making one small change that can add up to a big savings in calories.

canstockphoto45550913Boosts Metabolism:  Every time you eat or drink anything, your body has to work to process what you’ve ingested.  This is called “diet-induced thermogenesis” and it has been documented in the The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism to increase metabolism by up to as much at 30% for up to 40 minutes after drinking 17 ounces of water.  Plain and simple, drink more water and you will burn more calories.

Yes, it’s true that water may be a helpful contributor  to achieving your weight loss goals, but the primary key to long term weight loss success is learning to modify your food intake.  This often requires additional support and education, which the nutritional experts at Medifast Weight Control Centers are well equipped to provide. Please call today to schedule a complimentary consultation where we can discuss your specific dietary needs and design a program that will help you lose your weight safely and learn to keep it off.

Medifast Weight Control Centers offers four Valleywide weight loss clinics to help you in your quest to transform your physique and health. Call today for a free consult! (602) 996-9669

Harness Social Media’s Power to Influence Your Weight

Social media has become a daily ritual in the lives of most people.  We use it to keep in touch, be inspiredimages, stay informed and more as we bounce around from Facebook, to Twitter, to Instagram and a medley of other popular apps. Our perpetual exposure to the messages delivered through social media can powerfully influence many areas of our lives, including our weight. Social media can either sabotage or support your weight loss goals. Here’s how:

Social Media Saboteurs

  1. Less time spent being active

Research has shown a correlation between increased social media time and decreased physical activity.  This makes sense since as most of us have a limited amount of free time, and if we chose to spend it sitting in front of Facebook we are choosing not to use it for something more active.

 

Try setting a daily limit for your social media time and perhaps even reward yourself with this time only after you’ve worked out.

 

  1. Normalizing weight gain

                  The  Framingham Heart Study found that when a person’s fbfriend became obese, there was a 57% chance that they too would become obese. Similarly, a study done at Harvard showed that obesity is “socially contagious” so if our friends and family are obese, we are more likely to become obese.  Scientists think that a person’s social network affects what they perceive as normal and acceptable.

 

If you see your social media contacts packing on the pounds, don’t be tempted to give up your hopes of losing weight and join the masses.

 

Social Media Supporters

 

  1. A source of inspiration

We can be sabotaged by the influence of our friends’ weight gain, but we can be equally inspired by their bikini clad, fit bodies.

 

Look for social media sites that provide inspirational and informative sources.  Search for support groups or motivational social media sites that you can follow or join. You can start by going to Medifast AZ on Facebook and liking the page so that you regularly receive helpful tips, inspiring words, recipes and more.             

 

  1. A place for accountability and sharing

Making a declaration of your decision to lose weight publicly on social fb thumbsmedia can help to create your own personal cheering squad. Posting regularly about both your progress and challenges will keep your motivation up, while holding you accountable to your social media audience.

 

Social media can be a powerful tool to help you achieve your weight loss goals, if used properly.  Harnessing that power along with a personalized weight loss program from Medifast Weight Control Centers will give you something to tweet about as you share your success on social media. Take the first step and call today to schedule your complimentary consultation.

Your Thoughts Influence Your Weight Loss Success

Chances are that if you’re reading this, your life may seem like an ongoing quest to achieve your ideal weight.  We all know that diet and exercise are essential ingredients to conquering the battle of the bulge, but there is another key determinant of weight loss success.  This often-overlooked key to overcoming failed weight loss attempts is largely dependent upon how you think. Introducing positive thinking to your weight loss regime can influence the success of your next attempt.

  1. Set realistic goals. One of the quickest ways to send yourself spiraling down a rabbit hole of self-deprecating thinking is to set unattainable goals.  On the other hand, setting a goal that you can achieve compounds positive thoughts and emotions.  Successes, no matter how small, provide positive energy that further fuels your desire to tackle the next goal. Although it may feel like it, you didn’t gain your weight overnight and it won’t be lost overnight either.  Be kind to yourself, have patience, and recognize that each pound lost is bringing you one step closer to your ultimate destination.

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  1. What you think will become your reality. The Law of Attraction is based on the premise that what we focus on is what we will bring about. So, if you’re focused on another failed attempt at losing weight, you will most surely create that reality.  Instead focus on how you’ll feel when you succeed and how much more energy you have when nourishing your body with healthy foods.  Visualize shopping for a new wardrobe or fitting into your favorite pair of skinny jeans.  Focus on how empowering it is to be back in control of your health and well-being.

 

  1. Don’t dwell on slip ups. Being human also means that we are imperfect and despite our best efforts, we will likely canstockphoto39740216encounter a few detours on the road to success.  Don’t let one poor choice to skip a workout or indulge in dessert spark a downward trend.  Instead, acknowledge the err of your ways and how it made you feel and then quickly put it behind you. Focus on your overall success, adjust your goal if necessary and get right back on track!

 

Yes, staying positive is a key to successfully attaining your weight loss goal, but it’s easier said than done. Having a team of caring professionals to support you and help keep your mind and body on track can make all the difference.

Medifast Weight Control Centers can help keep you feeling positive and supported as you strive toward your ideal weight. Take the first step and call (602) 996-9669 today to schedule your complimentary consultation.

Now is the Best Time to Lose Weight!

How many times have you said, “I’ll start my diet next week”? Famous last words, right? Well, at the risk of sounding cliché, I will tell you there’s no time like the present and here’s why.

  1. Instant gratification: Although it may feel like it, weight gain doesn’t happen overnight and unfortunately weight doesn’t fall off overnight either. That said, before you lose even an ounce, just knowing that Weight Loss Clinic Phoenixyou’ve made the commitment to lose weight can produce a flurry of endorphins. Feeling good about the direction you’re headed is many times the best motivation to keep you moving toward your goal.

 

  1. Overcome the self-imposed guilt: Not doing what you know is in your own best interest can be a big downer. When we delay our goals, words of self-ridicule tend to play over and over in our minds like a broken record. Conversely, when we attack our goals with ferocity, we feel intrinsically better about ourselves.

 

  1. Delay equals greater difficulty: The longer you wait to begin losing weight, the harder it can be. With weight loss, the more we think about it, the greater our urge is to eat. So spending weeks and months contemplating the start of a weight loss program can equate to weeks and months of additional weight gain. By taking action now, you have everything to gain and nothing to lose except for the weight of course.

 

  1. Reduce health risks: The sooner you begin to lose weight, the less likely you are to jeopardize your health. Every day that you carry around excess weight is a day that you risk acquiring life altering ailments such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and cancer to name a few. When you begin to lose weight, you increase your odds of avoiding these maladies.Scale-image-with-yes-300x270

 

  1. Getting started is the hardest part so as Nike says, “just do it”! Have you ever dreaded the thought of doing something, only to realize that once you started it wasn’t all that bad? When we stand at the base of a mountain gazing upward, we create a mental story that tells us all the reasons it will be hard to climb. Once we take that first step though, the hardest part is over and the motion that we create propels us forward.

 

If you’ve been in weight loss contemplation mode, try contemplating all of the reasons why it makes sense to not put it off for another day!

Call Medifast Weight Loss Centers today at (602) 996-9669 and you’ll get the support and expertise of our professionally trained and caring team to help jump start your weight loss goals.

Weight Loss Made Easy or Assisted Bulimia? Overview of AspireAssist

Innately, people are programmed to want quick results with minimal effort. We want to win the lottery, experience love at first sight, and have the body of our dreams overnight! It is exactly this psychological phenomenon that causes people to fall victim to weight loss fads that promise instant results with little to no effort.

Preying upon those desperately hoping to acquire their ideal physique in no time flat, a new device called AspireAssist has been Device-and-buttoncreated and recently FDA approved. The device consists of a tube which is surgically implanted into the patient’s stomach through an incision in the abdomen. The tube connects to a port valve, which lies outside the belly. Three times a day, about 30 minutes after eating, the person attaches external tubing to the valve and spends about 10 minutes emptying the contents of his stomach into the toilet.

Being analogous to the serious and potentially life-threatening eating disorder, bulimia, there are a multitude of other potential side effects. Industry and medical experts have weighed in on their concerns.

  • According to Dr. Sajani Shah, a minimally invasive and bariatric surgeon at Tufts Medical Center, “It’s like giving someone bulimia. Basically, you can just vomit out this tube.”
  • “I’m sure it won’t be long until tales of infections, leakage, lack of nutrient absorption, depression and suicide, severe hypoglycemia, extreme thiamine deficiency, anemia, osteoporosis, and all sorts of other complications” surface, as they have with bariatric surgery, says Laura Beck at Jezebelcanstockphoto17291594
  • According to the FDA, side effects may include occasional indigestion, nausea, vomiting, constipation and diarrhea. The surgical procedure used to place the gastric tube also has risks, including sore throat, pain, abdominal bloating, bleeding, infection, nausea, vomiting and death.
  • Michael Jensen, professor of medicine at Mayo Clinic, was an investigator for the clinical trial of the device. He reported that most people wouldn’t even entertain doing it for any amount of money because they found it so repulsive. Those that did try it found it a difficult burden to use the device three times a day and many dropped out of the study or hardly used the device.

The bottom line is that to achieve long-term, healthy weight control, there is no quick fix. Lifestyle changes including dietary choices, portion control, exercise, and our overall relationship with food must be made. You don’t have to do this alone though.

The experienced and caring professionals at Medifast Weight Control Centers can help support and guide you toward your weight loss goal! Call today and let us help you.

Vacation Doesn’t Have to Sabotage Your Fitness Goals

Medifast Glendale AZAccording to Gallop and other online surveys, summer is the vacation season of choice for over 50% of Americans. However, if you’re committed to pursuing a specific weight loss or fitness goal, the idea of vacation can trigger an emotional conflict.

You may be thinking, “As much as I want to spend this time away, I dread the thought of returning heavier than when I left and I’m not talking about my luggage!” Ok, take a deep breath and relax. Vacation does not have to lead to falling off your proverbial weight loss wagon. There is a way to enjoy your well-deserved time off without sacrificing your fitness goals.

Take advantage of airport travel time. Rather than taking the moving sidewalk or escalator, opt for good, old fashioned walking or stair climbing. If you have a wait time before your flight, get up and walk canstockphoto8958370around. Airports usually have long stretches of space perfect for walking so take a walk and get your body in calorie burning mode before your flight.

Plan active outings. Activity increases endorphins so if you remain active on your vacation, not only will you burn calories, but you will likely have more fun! Here are some ideas:

  • Sign up for a guided hike or be adventurous and chart your own course to explore the unique scenery of your vacation destination.
  • If you are in a place near the water, take part in activities such as paddle boarding, kayaking, snorkeling or scuba diving.
  • After meals, take a walk and explore the resort or town, rather than sipping a margarita by the pool.

Take control of your menu. Book a venue with an in room mini kitchen. This way you can buy and prepare food that you know is healthy and not loaded with hidden fat and calories. Alternately, research restaurants with healthy options and/or the flexibility to prepare simple, whole foods upon your request.

Have an accountability plan. Setting a goal to maintain or lose weight during vacation is a nice place to start, but in isolation won’t usually produce the desired result. It is when we share our goals and hold ourselves accountable to others that success rates soar! Before you go on your vacation, devise a plan to connect with a specific person to whom you will be accountable daily.

With a little pre-planning, summer vacation doesn’t have to disrupt your weight loss goals. You may find that you enjoy it even more because you won’t have the guilt of coming back with any extra baggage around your waistline!

The caring and knowledgeable professionals at Medifast Weight Control Centers can devise a sensible weight loss plan for your summer vacation. There are weight loss clinics in Scottsdale, Glendale, Gilbert and Chandler AZ. Pick up the phone today so we can help you start working toward your weight loss goals!

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