How to Look Healthy

Looking healthy and maintaining your health is an everyday job. To look good there are a number of things a person can do. Three of the most important are watching your calorie intake, fat intake and exercising. The combination of these three can ensure that your body will look good. The following sections explain how to go about maintaining this lifestyle. Keep in mind that looking good takes time and a lot of effort.

Calorie Intake

The problem with calorie intake is that most people do not know how many calories they are taking in. The best way to monitor calorie intake is to write down everything you eat or drink. You can use the nutritional facts on the food label. Compare the serving size on the food label to the serving size you ate. Then multiply the calorie value of the serving size by how many servings eaten. Write that number down, and repeat that system for each food eaten during the day.

The latest results of how many calories are eaten, on average, per day, is 2,095 with 50% being carbohydrates, 34% being fat, 15% as protein and 2% alcohol. There is a way to determine the number of calories you need to consume to maintain your average weight range. On average, men need 2000-2500 calories to maintain weight, and need 1600-2000 calories to lose weight. Women maintain their weight at 1600-2000 calories, and lose weight at 1200-1600 calories.

A calorie counter is a good way to measure how many calories you are burning by exercising, and how many calories it takes to perform activities. Your weight is the main factor in determining how many calories are burned. Calorie conters use your weight, combined with the intensity of activity to figure out how many calories are burned.

Some activities will burn off more calories than others. On average, a 150-pound person will burn off 527 calories in a one-hour basketball game, 461 calories for one hour of rollerblading and 263 calories for walking for one hour.

If you are trying to reduce calorie intake, there are certain steps to follow. Reduce the amount of sugar and cooking oil used, steam or grill all meats instead of frying, select fiber-rich foods, always read the food labels, use a food exchange list and consult a dietician.

Here are some foods to watch out for. These are the top nine sources of calories in our diet. They include whole milk, cola, white bread, rolls, sugar, 2% milk, beef, flour and cheese.

On the average, most foods have their amount of calories written on the package. Just be careful of the serving size because a food could be more than one serving, which means there's more calories. Fruits are usually 100 calories, vegetables are very low in calories or are negative calories, skim milk reduces calories and fish and skinless chicken or turkey are better than red meat.

There are some vegetables and fruits that are actually negative calories(burn off calories). Some of these are cauliflower, celery, beans, lettuce, broccoli, cucumbers, grapefruit, peaches, strawberries and melon.

Fat Intake

What exactly are fats. They belong to the organic materials of lipids. Fats provide the body with their maximum energy. Everybody needs a certain amount of fat for normal functioning. When fats are digested, they give the body certain fat soluble vitamins. Fat is also used to insulate the body from the cold and prevent heat loss. There should be a daily intake of 15-25 fat grams.

There are three divisions of fats. The first is saturated fats. Fat intake will always vary with the person. Usually no more than 30% of total calories should be from fat with less than 10% of this from saturated fat sources. Saturated fat has the most negative effects on cholesterol levels. Saturated fats include all animal fats as well as some plant-based fats.

It is important to know how to calculate the grams of fat from calorie intake. You must first know the percentage of total calories that are coming from fat. An important equation is that one gram of fat equals nine calories.

Unsaturated fats come from the vegetable oils. Most of the essential fatty acids come from unsaturated fats. The third division is monounsaturated fats. They come from almost all oils.

Here is a chart with certain foods, and their fat and calorie amount. This site contains many foods, and you could probably find all the foods that you would think of eating.

Fat and Calorie Amounts
Food Fat Amount(grams) Calorie Amount(KC)
Bagel(1) 2 200
Banana(1) 1 105
Beef Steak(2.5oz) 6 150
Beer-Regular(12fl oz) 0 150
Butter(1Tbsp) 11 100
Cheddar Cheese(1 oz) 9 115
Chicken-Fried(2.5 oz) 11 195
Egg(1) 5 75
Ice Cream-soft serve(1 cup) 23 375
Popcorn(1 cup) 0 30
Rice-white(1 cup) 0 225

Exercise

Exercise is extremely important for weight loss and maintenance. Without proper exercise, your body will not burn off the calories and fats that it needs to. Some people are worried about when to eat before and after exercising. It is best to eat more than two hours but less than four hours before exercising. High fat or sugar meals are not recommended before exercising. Drinking water before exercising is very important. People can eat whenever they want after exercising. It is a personal decision.

Exercising will increase your body's metabolism throughout the day, and up to 24 hours after exercising. There is not physically a certain time to exercise that is better than others, but it is sometimes psychologically best to exercise in the morning. You get an energy burst throughout the day, and you also get it over with, so there are no excuses later.

Why is exercise so important? It is important for medical reasons. It will help with problems such as hypertension, sleep disorders, depression, stress and high blood-fat levels. Exercising regularly can improve your body image and increase your energy level. It also helps to control weight and decrease stress.

Exercise should be performed three to five times per week. Gradually you can increase that to six or seven. The best duration of exercise is 30 minutes of continuous activity.

There are two types of exercises-aerobic and anaerobic. Aerobic means "with oxygen". This type of exercise requires a lot of oxygen. When trying to lose weight, aerobic exercises are the best to start with. With this type of exercise, you burn more calories and can start to lose weight. Aerobic exercise should only be performed at the maximum of six days a week. It is best to give your body a relax day(Greene, Make the Connection, Harpo Inc., 1996).

When you perform a highly aerobic exercise on a regular basis, you increase your aerobic enzymes. Aerobic enzymes help to burn more fat, so it is best to increase them. It is best to pick one primary aerobic exercise that can be done anywhere. This will be the exercise that is performed three to five times a week.

Walking is a great primary exercise. It is aerobic, you don't need any equipment and it can be performed anywhere. Make sure you are walking at a good pace to raise your heart rate. Jogging is also a good exercise. It produces faster weight-loss but will place added stress on the body. Aerobics is a fun way to exercise. It is a good workout option. More injuries will occur with this type, but it will be less monotonous.

Anaerobic exercise is great for maintenance-to keep toned or build muscle. This would include stretching or weightlifting. Weight training will increase and retain muscle mass, strengthen joints and ligaments and maintain bone density. It can be performed every day as long as the different muscle groups are alternated.

Here is a chart for different activities. It includes the activity, and how many calories are burned off(on average)for 1 hour of the activity.

Activity and Calorie Amounts
Activity Amount of calories/hour
Bicycling 545
In-Line Skating 477
Running(5mph) 545
Bowling 204
Golf 306
Dancing 306
Basketball 545
Football(catch) 170
Ice Hockey 545
Skiing 477
Softball 340
Tennis 477
Aerobics 477
Jogging 477
Walking 238
Weight Lifting 204
Swimming 545
Stretching 272