Should I Try a Carb-Free Diet?

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FROM THE BLOG

SHOULD I TRY A CARB-FREE DIET?

The short answer is no. The slightly longer answer is, the human body needs some carbohydrates to function correctly. Also, nutrient and fiber packed fruits and vegetables contain carbohydrates, which means cutting out all carbs could create vitamin and mineral deficiencies. While following a low carb diet can result in weight loss short term; studies show following this eating routine for months or years raises serious concerns. Heart arrhythmias, cardiac function impairment, sudden death, osteoporosis, kidney damage, increased cancer risk, impairment of physical activity are potential complications that could arise.
Many no carb diets promote high intake of protein and fat from animal sources which may raise your risk of heart disease, increased bone loss, gastrointestinal disturbances and may increase risks of various chronic diseases or certain cancers.
Need more reasons to skip this fad diet? There can be side effects when starting on any drastic elimination diet. Cutting out carbohydrates could lead to:
  • Headaches
  • Bad breath
  • Weakness
  • Muscle cramps
  • Fatigue
  • Skin rash
  • Constipation or diarrhea
Luckily, there are ways to incorporate nutritious carbohydrates into a healthy diet. Start by eating a variety of fruits and vegetables each day. Second, when eating breads and other starchy foods make the best choice by reading labels. Look for ‘whole grain’ as the first ingredient. We get the most nutrients and fiber when the whole grain is used in our foods. Don’t mistake that foods labeled with ‘multi-grain’, ‘100% 'wheat’, or ‘high fiber’ or foods that are dark brown as being healthy. Read the label for ‘Whole Grain’ to know for sure.
Contrary to fad diet claims, evidence shows healthy carbohydrate selection isn’t linked to weight gain or obesity. Let’s stop the carb bashing and start making smart carbohydrate choices!

Staci McKelvey

SVP, Marketing & Communications

smckelvey@hmcebs.com

860.697.6960 x403

Stay Sharp at Work with a Little Self-Care

Self-Care
FROM THE BLOG

STAY SHARP AT WORK WITH A LITTLE SELF CARE

Meghan Steckowski, Nutritionist & Certified Wellness Coach
Director of Client Services and Health Promotion

Want to stay sharp and clear-headed throughout your workday? A little bit of self-care can go a long way in helping us mentally and physically. Studies show exercise helps memory and thinking along with improving mood, sleep and reducing stress. Whether you are at a desk all day, on your feet, or driving food or goods around America, here are some every day tips to try.
At a desk: In the time it takes you to check your email in the morning, you can do these “at your desk” stretches. Stay productive by taking short breaks to give your mind a break and your legs and body a stretch. Add small movement into your day by taking the stairs or using a bathroom further away. Changing your routine and the mini break from work may help you feel more energetic and productive. Also, be sure your desk is set up with proper ergonomics to avoid future pain from strained muscles.
For those on their feet all day: Start your day off right by adding these 5 stretches that will get you ready to take on your day and may prevent injury or decrease end of the day fatigue. Stretching is not only healthy for the body but the mind also benefits from deep breathing and being mindful. Want to go the extra mile? Do the same 5 stretches again at the end of your shift or before bed.
Driving all day: Commit to take 15 minutes each day to be active. It could be as simple as push-ups, crunches, planks or follow this video focused on helping drivers prevent or reduce back pain. Some other options include: Carry some small equipment with you like a jump rope or dumbbells. If there is a park nearby, spend your 15 minutes in nature walking or stretching. Exercise and nature improve mood and mental health. Driving all day can be mentally draining and stressful. Why not use your 15 minutes to give yourself a physical and mental boost?

Staci McKelvey

SVP, Marketing & Communications

smckelvey@hmcebs.com

860.697.6960 x403

Here’s How Eating Healthy and Being Healthy Can Pad Your Wallet

Lunch box with healthy food. Rice, broccoli, tomato, cucumber, eggs, apple and water. On grey concrete background
FROM THE BLOG

HERE'S HOW EATING HEALTHY & BEING HEALTHY CAN PAD YOUR WALLET

Meghan Steckowski, Nutritionist & Certified Wellness Coach
Director of Client Services and Health Promotion

 

Most of us agree that we want to be healthy and wealthy, but when it comes to planning for the future, we don’t treat our health and wealth the same. We tend to focus on saving and trying to make smart financial decisions that will give us and our families a better future. What if we gave the same attention and focus to our health? What if we could do both?

Can eating healthy SAVE you money?

Yes, it can! One of the best things you can do to increase your health is to eat nutritious foods. Being
healthy means you won’t have multiple medication expenses; prescribed or over the counter. Being
healthy also means fewer doctor visits; put all those saved copayments in the bank for a rainy day or a
college fund. Staying healthy can also keep you at work; save those sick days or paid time off for a sunny
vacation. A relaxing break lowers your stress and being with family or friends creates lasting memories.

 

Even though fast food can seem like an affordable option, a home cooked meal can cost anywhere from
two to six times less and typically has at least half the calories. So, if you are looking for some extra cash - let your grocery shopping do the work for you. Grocery shopping and home cooking are good for your wallet and your waist!

 

Eating well is a good preventative health measure. Cutting down on soda and sugary foods by having
vegetables and foods high in fiber can help you achieve a healthy weight. At a healthy weight, you have a
lower risk of having diabetes, heart conditions and there is less stress on your joints- maybe avoiding a
costly knee surgery. A healthy diet can’t prevent all illness but it is one lifestyle choice we get to make
daily for a healthy and wealthy future.

 

Let’s eat well for a happy, healthy and wealthy today and tomorrow!

Staci McKelvey

SVP, Marketing & Communications

smckelvey@hmcebs.com

860.697.6960 x403

Not All Heroes Wear Capes

Blood Donors Making Donation In Hospital
FROM THE BLOG

NOT ALL HEROES WEAR CAPES

Meghan Steckowski, Nutritionist & Certified Wellness Coach
Director of Client Services and Health Promotion

Looking to make a difference in 2019? Donate blood. According to the Red Cross, every two seconds, someone in America needs blood. Blood donors save lives.

Did you know...

There is no substitute for blood. Every transfusion received was because of a generous blood donor.

You can donate blood every 56 days.

One donation can potentially save up to three lives.

A single car accident victim can require as many as 100 pints of blood.

What can I expect when I donate?

Once you are checked in, you will be asked confidentially for your health history, medications and any travel outside the U.S. Your vital signs will be checked including blood pressure and temperature. Blood donation takes 8-10 minutes and you will be seated or laying down. You will donate approximately a pint of blood and afterwards will be given a snack and beverage. You will leave with the satisfaction that your donation may help to save up to three lives. Click here to find a blood drive in your area.

What happens to my blood after I donate?

According to the organization OneBlood, a sample is sent to a state-of-the-art testing facility. A variety of tests are run to ensure blood is safe for transfusion. Within 24 hours of your donation the results are reported. If approved, your donation is prepared for distribution to a hospital. Red cells can be refrigerated for up to 42 days. In most cases, donated blood will be transfused within two to three days of donation.

The need for blood donations is constant and the Red Cross works 365 days a year to get your donation to your neighbors, near and far. Not all heroes wear capes. Donate today!

Staci McKelvey

SVP, Marketing & Communications

smckelvey@hmcebs.com

860.697.6960 x403

Join the Red Wave

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FROM THE BLOG

JOIN THE RED WAVE

Meghan Steckowski, Nutritionist & Certified Wellness Coach
Director of Client Services and Health Promotion

Are you seeing red? It must be Friday, February 1st. The country goes red from sea to shining sea on the first Friday in February to raise awareness for cardiovascular disease. We wear red as a reminder to ourselves and others to take action to prevent heart disease.

Wearing red raises awareness not only for heart health but promotes preventative testing so we and those we love, know our individual risks of heart related conditions. Armed with the knowledge of our own risks, we can take action to improve our heart health. Heart disease is largely preventable. We can lower our risk by being active for 30 minutes a day, quitting smoking, eating a heart healthy diet and asking your doctor to check your blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose regularly.

According to the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States. Every year, 1 in 4 deaths are caused by heart disease.By spreading the word about heart disease and how to prevent it, communities, health professionals, friends and family can work together to encourage those they love to live heart-healthy lives.

Wearing red raises awareness is a good first step but let’s not stop there. Take action. Save lives.

Staci McKelvey

SVP, Marketing & Communications

smckelvey@hmcebs.com

860.697.6960 x403