Stress is no longer a word no one understands, as each of us live it daily, yet some of us can handle it better than other, most of us are stressed to the point where it has controlled us. Individuals who are stressed report having similar physical sensations. Physical stress refers to the physical symptoms that are experienced when an individual feels stressed or is anxious. The physical manifestations of stress can be the following:
Look back at the list above and see how many of these symptoms you experience, if you experience them all day long and they do not go away after bouts of stress, you are in a danger zone at will affect your health. Next week we will discuss the first step in managing stress.
Stress has many effects on the body. Stress is a non-specific response by the body to any demand that overcomes, or threatens to overcome the body's ability to maintain homeostasis. Homeostasis is the body’s internal sense of balance. A stressor (demand) is any psychological, social, environmental, physiological, or spiritual stimulus that disrupts homeostasis, thereby requiring change or adaptation. There are many examples of stressors including: exercise, hunger, a job promotion, relationship issues, an accident, a long daily commute, etc. The brain receives information about the disruption to homeostasis that the stressor has caused and initiates a response to eventually help the body return to homeostasis. Stress encourages growth when an individual is able to meet the demands of the new adaptation. It is a natural process and critical to our survival as long as the body is given sufficient time to recover between stressors. The body needs to be able to restore itself to homeostasis following a stressful experience. The challenge with stress is when the individual is not able to adapt to the new demands and the body does not return to homeostasis.
If the body does not return to homeostasis, then it results in physical changes that are designed to maintain survival. The survival mode that the body goes through is a stress response. This stress response is often called "fight or flight" or "fight or flight or freeze" and effects many systems in the body such as the nervous system and endocrine (hormonal) system.
Below is a typical Stress-Time Chart. This chart shows stress being in a danger zone towards the evening since it is in a high range which can have negative effects on the health of the body. Stress should ideally decrease towards the evening to assist with sleep and is ideally in optimal zone during the midday when there are more resources and energy that can be devoted to problem solving for stress. Unfortunately, most individuals do not engage in stress relieving activities throughout the day and instead, stress is built up overtime. In the below example, stress is continually increasing over the period of the day indicating that there is little stress relief or management until it becomes a larger problem. It is important to recognize stress so it can be addressed with stress relieving techniques and create balance.
Legend of Stress Rating
5: Clear, focused, alert and ready for action but in control
3-7: The Optimal Zone to function most of the time in terms of anxiety/stress. Stress/Anxiety can be quickly reduced in this zone.
>7: Physical stress symptoms manifest, thoughts and behaviors are too agitated. When stress/anxiety reaches this level it is difficult to reduce stress to a lower level. 7 is known as the point of no return.
10: Highest Level of stress – Crisis point or Panic attack stage
The secret is prevention so that we can observe and have control over our stress/anxiety level. Every week you will be learning more about how stress affects your health. Stay tuned for next weeks blog about " Physical Stress Symptoms"
Why You Need a Good Night’s Sleep?
We have so many demands on our time—jobs, family, errands—not to mention finding some time to relax. To fit everything in, we often sacrifice sleep. But sleep affects both mental and physical health. It’s vital to your well-being. Of course, sleep helps you feel rested each day. But while you’re sleeping, your brain and body don’t just shut down. Internal organs and processes are hard at work throughout the night. Yet so many of us know this, we still don't believe the impacts of lack of sleep on body composition.
Sleep aspects of our body in one way or another: molecular, energy balance, as well as intellectual function, alertness and mood, When you’re tired, you can’t function at your best. Sleep helps you think more clearly, have quicker reflexes and focus better. Well-rested people, operate at a different levels than people trying to get by on 1 or 2 hours less nightly sleep, Loss of sleep impairs your higher levels of reasoning, problem-solving and attention to detail, which can make changes in the foods you choose to eat and the energy you have for the gym. Tired people tend to be less productive at work in the gym and make poor eating decisions. A sleep deficit over time can even put you at greater risk for developing depression, obesity and lack of motivation.
But sleep isn’t just essential for the brain. Sleep affects almost every tissue in our bodies, It affects growth and stress hormones, our immune system, appetite, breathing, blood pressure and cardiovascular health. Research shows that lack of sleep increases the risk for obesity, heart disease and infections. Throughout the night, your heart rate, breathing rate and blood pressure rise and fall, a process that may be important for cardiovascular health. Your body releases hormones during sleep that help repair cells and control the body’s use of energy. These hormone changes can affect your body weight. Even, ongoing research shows a lack of sleep can produce diabetic-like conditions in otherwise healthy people.
A good night’s sleep consists of 4 to 5 sleep cycles. Each cycle includes periods of deep sleep and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, when we dream. As the night goes on, the portion of that cycle that is in REM sleep increases. It turns out that this pattern of cycling and progression is critical to the biology of sleep. Although personal needs vary, on average, adults need 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night. Babies typically sleep about 16 hours a day. Young children need at least 10 hours of sleep, while teenagers need at least 9 hours. To attain the maximum restorative benefits of sleep, getting a full night of quality sleep is important.
Sleep can be disrupted by many things. Stimulants such as caffeine or certain medications can keep you up. Distractions such as electronics—especially the light from TVs, cell phones, tablets and e-readers—can prevent you from falling asleep.
As people get older, they may not get enough sleep because of illness, medications or sleep disorders. By some estimates, about 70 million Americans of all ages suffer from chronic sleep problems. The 2 most common sleep disorders are insomnia and sleep apnea.
People with insomnia have trouble falling or staying asleep. Anxiety about falling asleep often makes the condition worse. Most of us have occasional insomnia. But chronic insomnia—lasting at least 3 nights per week for more than a month—can trigger serious daytime problems such as exhaustion, irritability and difficulty concentrating.
Common therapies include relaxation and deep-breathing techniques. Sometimes medicine is prescribed. But consult a doctor before trying even over-the-counter sleep pills, as they may leave you feeling un-refreshed in the morning.
People with sleep apnea have a loud, uneven snore (although not everyone who snores has apnea). Breathing repeatedly stops or becomes shallow. If you have apnea, you’re not getting enough oxygen, and your brain disturbs your sleep to open your windpipe.
Apnea is dangerous. There’s little air exchange for 10 seconds or more at a time, The oxygen goes down and the body’s fight or flight response is activated. Blood pressure spikes, your heart rate fluctuates and the brain wakes you up partially to start your breathing again. This creates stress.
Apnea can leave you feeling tired and moody. You may have trouble thinking clearly. Also, apnea affects the vessels that lead to the brain so there is a higher risk of stroke associated with it. If you have mild sleep apnea, you might try sleeping on your side, exercising or losing weight to reduce symptoms. A CPAP machine, which pumps air into your throat to keep your airway open, can also help. Another treatment is a bite plate that moves the lower jaw forward. In some cases, however, people with sleep apnea need surgery. If you snore chronically and wake up choking or gasping for air, and feel that you’re sleepy during the day, tell your doctor and get evaluated.
Good sleep is critical to your health. To make each day a safe, productive one, take steps to make sure you regularly get a good night’s sleep.
Here are tips that I do every night
1. Take melatonin or Sleepy Tea
2. Take 500 mg of Magnesium
3. Wear black out eye mask at night
4. Sleep in light clothing
5. Read a book vs. using my phone or use the right light setting on my phone for night time
6. No electronic on my side table.
There’s no avoiding the fact that mesomorphs have things a bit easier than others. Their metabolisms are relatively efficient, they carry functional – if not athletic – muscle mass and are essentially ready to take on whatever fitness goal they please with minimal foundational work. But remember, while there are undoubtedly some people who look lean and fit with zero effort, they are the exception to the rule. Most individuals who present a more-mesomorphic body composition have developed it as a consequence of numerous factors over their entire lifetime. And for formally endo- or ectomorphic individuals who have improved their lifestyles, diets, and fitness, hard work and discipline are the biggest factors of all. A mesomorphic body type indicates a client is ready to transition to more advanced forms of power, athletic, and sport-specific training. Comparatively, diets for mesomorphic bodies should be tailored specifically to health and fitness goals. Protein should be consumed anywhere between 1.2 and 2.2 grams per kilogram body weight depending on the intensity of the exercise program, with remaining calories coming from a blend of healthy carbs and fats. Then, if changes in body composition are still desired, the daily calorie load can either be increased or decreased to gain or lose weight, respectively.
YOUR BODY TYPE IS NOT A LIFE SENTENCEThe observable somatotype represents the current sum of their physical, dietary, and lifestyle choices up to that point in time, combined with a variety of uncontrollable factors influenced by both genetics and the surrounding environment. For example, at one extreme end of the spectrum, a person who has easy access to high-quality food, makes habitually healthy diet choices, is free of chronic disease, and consistently trains at progressively higher intensities will always have a more functional, muscular, and leaner body composition. On the flip side, someone who always sits all day and eats a lots of excess calories from junk food will undoubtedly develop the “soft roundness” stated in Sheldon’s original classification of endomorphs.
But remember, a body type is not a life sentence. If it were, personal trainers and nutrition coaches would all be out of jobs. The fitness industry, at its core, is all about helping people learn to use tools they can control (i.e., improved lifestyle, diet, and exercise techniques) to overcome challenges presented by genetic and environmental factors that they otherwise have no agency over. Body type will shift based on lifestyle, activity, and diet modifications. This notion is made clear when looking at average physiques of elite athletes in different sports, where consistent training and diet standards lead to similar average body compositions grouped across the somatotype spectrum.
HOW TO TRAIN ENDOMORPHS
Training endomorphs should predominantly focus on fat loss techniques until a desirable body composition and functional cardiorespiratory efficiency have been achieved. Resistance training should be used to strengthen muscles and stabilize joints to support more-efficient movement elsewhere in life, but this population tends to need cardiorespiratory improvement and fat loss above all. In the gym, the majority of training sessions focused on metabolic conditioning. Use short rest periods, circuits for resistance exercises, lots of plyometrics (within client tolerance), and use as much additional time as possible for steady-state cardio. Consistent anaerobic and aerobic training will help endomorphic bodies increase their metabolic efficiency and boost the body’s daily energy requirement. Additionally, recommend that primarily-endomorphic clients increase their non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT) factor as much as possible, moving more during times of the day when they’re not in the gym. Commitment to a less-sedentary lifestyle overall is the most important thing for this population to begin overcoming their metabolic challenges. Due to those slower metabolisms (regardless of the underlying cause) and a surplus of stored energy (body fat), nutritional solutions for primarily-endomorphic individuals should focus on techniques to maximize fat loss while still supporting, and even building, the existing lean muscle mass. To accomplish this, a diet that is both low-calorie and high in protein is ideal. Diets containing daily protein of as much as 2.2 grams per kilogram body weight (and sometimes even higher) have been shown safe and effective for supporting existing muscle tissue during times of calorie restriction and weight loss. After ensuring that daily protein requirements have been met, the remaining pool of calories can come from whatever blend of carbs and fats the individual best tolerates. Some may tolerate a very low-carb “ketogenic” diet that helps them preferentially burn even more fat throughout the day, while others will experience hypoglycemia and its associated nauseating symptoms without enough carbohydrates in their diet. This rings especially true during workouts, where carbs are important to fuel the higher intensities needed for cardiorespiratory improvement. But regardless of whether carbs or fats are the preferred source of energy, the most important thing is to determine the client’s total daily calorie requirement and keep food intake a bit lower (with still-ample protein) so that the body remains in a negative energy balance with as little muscle catabolism as possible.
ECTOMORPH BODY TYPE
HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR BODY COMPOSITION
Research continues to prove that physical training and consistent, habitual changes to the diet have a strong influence on improving body composition. Metabolic conditions such as hyper- or hypothyroidism are fully within the realm of modern medicine to manage and improve, and chronic conditions like type 2 diabetes are manageable and can even be remedied in many cases through improvements to diet and exercise routines. Simply type “[exercise/diet] impact on body composition” into your favorite search engine and quickly become overwhelmed with the breadth of research spanning the last century. The human body is highly adaptable and always seeks homeostasis (i.e., equilibrium) within its environment. But it can take a while to break old patterns that the body has gotten used to. This fact – that change takes time and consistency – is more than likely what leads many people to resign to the notion that they are stuck in a somatotype; because change is hard, and it’s often far easier and convenient to chalk one’s body dissatisfaction up to forces beyond direct control. But this is also where Certified Personal Trainers and Nutrition Coaches have the most opportunity to build long-lasting relationships with clients. Muscle is healthily gained at around one pound per month, and fat healthily lost at around one pound per week. After a desirable body composition has been attained through lifestyle modification, physical training, and healthy changes to diet – and, more importantly, when those new habits are adopted and maintained permanently – the new body that is symptomatic of all those changes will eventually become the “new normal.” Metabolisms and appetites adjust to new energy intakes, physical activity becomes a natural part of the day instead of a chore, and someone who was predominately ectomorphic or endomorphic will eventually see themselves displaying far more mesomorphic traits over time.
HOW TO TRAIN ECTOMORPHS
Most ectomorphic clients have developed bodies with highly active metabolisms and “lanky” bone structures, making it hard for them to put on mass and keep it on. For this reason, exercise techniques for hypertrophy and maximal strength should be prioritized, with a greatly-reduced focus on cardio respiratory training to reduce overall energy utilization. After working through the initial level of the building a muscular foundation of pattern movements, Phases 3 and 4 will be of most benefit to average clients in this population. Hypertrophy and maximal strength resistance training are primarily anaerobic in nature and, when combined with longer rest periods, won’t stimulate elevated calorie burn in the moment like more-intense, fast-paced exercise programs will. When paired with a consistently-positive energy balance, this type of lifting will preferentially help ectomorphs build up their body mass. To accompany the mass gain-focused resistance training, ectomorphic bodies should eat a mass gain-focused diet. These individuals tend to burn through energy sources faster than most, so ample calories will be needed. Low-carb, fat-loss focused diets are not recommended here, and in some cases, it may be prudent to recommend that ectomorphic clients even incorporate “mass gainer” nutritional shakes into their diets. And just like with endomorphic bodies that are working to become more mesomorphic, ectomorphs need high levels of protein too. 1.2 to 1.6 grams per kilogram body weight of daily protein has been shown to be optimal for muscle growth, with some individuals requiring up to 2.2. That protein should then be spaced out every three hours so that muscle protein synthesis are maximized all day long. An additional protein shake at night, right before bed to minimize the fasting window, can also be beneficial for maximizing for individuals with difficulty gaining weight.
In the 1940s, American psychologist, William Herbert Sheldon, developed an interesting theory by associating body types with human temperament types. Sheldon proposed that the human physique can be classified according to the relative contribution of three fundamental elements. He called them somatotypes, after the three germ layers of embryonic development: the endoderm, which develops into the digestive tract; the mesoderm, which develops into muscle, heart, and blood vessels; and the ectoderm, which forms the skin and nervous system .
Ectomorphic type is characterized by long, thin muscles and limbs, and low fat storage—usually referred to as slim. Ectomorphs are not predisposed to store fat or build muscle. The mesomorphic type is characterized by medium bones, solid torso, low fat levels, and wide shoulders, with a narrow waist—usually referred to as muscular. Mesomorphs are predisposed to build muscle, but not store fat. The endomorphic type is characterized by increased fat storage, a wide waist, and large bone structure, usually referred to as fat. Endomorphs are predisposed to store fat.
Sheldon’s method of somatotyping was modified by American anthropologists Barbara Heath and Lindsay Carter, based on several tools for precise quantification of shape and composition of human body. The somatotyping is done with anthropometric and photographic methods. The scores of relative endomorphy, mesomorphy, and ectomorphy are calculated based on standard tables and preset equations.
There is evidence that different physiques carry cultural stereotypes. For example, endomorphs are likely to be perceived as slow, sloppy, and lazy. Mesomorphs, in contrast, are typically popular, and hardworking, whereas ectomorphs are often viewed as intelligent, but fearful.
The body type descriptions could be modulated by body composition. Certain diets, exercises, and training techniques may have a role in modulating body compositions. During starvation, an endomorph may resemble an ectomorph, while an athletic mesomorph may look like an endomorph as a result of loss of muscle, and adipose mass, or simply due to the aging process. However, certain characteristics of the somatotype cannot be changed. For example, the bone structure is a fixed characteristic, except for a few changes due to the reduction in the distance between joints due to aging or physical deformities. Even cultural conditions may lead to a tendency to change temperaments. Because of many such limitations, the constitutional psychology approach was not accepted by the scientific world, and is not in use much today. During Sheldon’s time, Western scientists generally may have been aware about the various Eastern traditional ways in which people are classified for the purpose of treatments. If Sheldon would have visited India, or had studied concept of Prakriti in Ayurveda, perhaps constitutional psychology would have gone on a different route. An eminent physician–scientist from India, R. D. Lele has found a correlation of somatotypes with Prakriti, where he links mesomorphs to Kapha, endomorphs to Pitta, and ectomorphs to Vata types. Sheldon’s classification might serve as a basis for Prakriti assessment.
Today you hear this word thrown around like a trend and even though it may seem as the new way of living, it truly is the Optimal form of living. Holistic Nutrition is a practice where it utilizes natural nutrition, supplementation, and lifestyle practices that allow the body to re balance itself. Holistic practitioners believe that optimal health can be attained when the body is given the right environment.
A Holistic approach to health gives many benefits like, weight loss, balanced hormones, stronger immune system, better energy levels, and less toxicity that allows the body to be more vibrant as well as more resistant to disease. A real Holistic Nutritionist understands that optimal health is more than just the food that you eat, yet goes more into the lifestyle, mindset, self care and love and all the other complexes of life that is able to guide their clients through a natural and customized approach to each individuals optimal health.
As humans we eat 4-5 times a day what we fuel our bodies with has a major impact on our health. Food today are lacking nutrients and this causes deficiencies which in turn cause our cells to starve, bagging us to eat more food than we need, leading to obesity. Our lifestyles are crazier than ever before, and this stress effects each and every hormone and how our bodies function.“Real results are found in those who are taught how to read the symptoms sent daily from the body and apply the proper and simple techniques on re balancing the body as a whole. The correct approach towards wellness, weight loss and digestive health goes far beyond calorie counting and pill popping.
A Holistic Nutritionist works closely with their clients and goes the extra mile to resolve stubborn health issues by investigating food sensitivities or allergies along with hormone testing, and coaching the client weekly with knowledge modules, worksheet, self improvement tips and assisting the client in daily lifestyle, diet, habits, sleep quality, stress levels, toxin exposure, supplements, and motivation level. A qualified Holistic Nutritionist will guide you into eating to better your health and keep your goals in mind too. Yet also applying only the supplement necessary to balance the body and allow food and lifestyle practices to balance out the rest.
Holistic Nutrition is the old school healing method lost within our great grandparents up bringing, but now resurfacing again as some of us are willing to take full responsibility of their health and future and not wanting to be stuck in the “Sick System”
I have been practicing Holistic Nutrition, Fitness training and Coaching clients for the past 14 years. My customized health programs, diet guides, meal plans, and fitness programs are a result of thoroughly investigating each person's unique case.
My care is always based on the individual client's needs. Before making recommendations, my programs also can include: food elimination diets, cleanses, recipes, food preparation tips, dining-out reference guides, grocery shopping guides and more, depending on the client. In holistic health we truly believe that most health issue all start in the gut, so healing the digestive system mostly comes first.