Taking Charge of Your Fertility or how to prevent pregnancy naturally

by: Yvana van den Hork
In the past week another birth control method came under fire for a brief moment: even the intrauterine device (IUD or coil) with the lowest amount of hormones when compared to the birth control PILL, has an oftentimes negative effect all over the body and is not 'just' effective locally. I was like, "duh, what else were you expecting?" . Afterwards, the news disasppeared...

Keto diets for endurance athletes

by: Yvana van den Hork
Many of us will have heard of the advantages of very low carb diets for obese patients and more specifically for diabetics. Going very low carb results in not having as much hunger and much healthier blood glucose levels. Another group that often goes on a keto diet are those who want to prevent tumour growth. But how about endurance runners or cyclists that experience...

Beware the chair

beware the chair
by: Yvana van den Hork
Just 'hitting the gym' several times a week may not be enough to off-set the negative consequences when you spend most of your time sitting on a chair or bench. According to scientists, prolonged sitting should carry a public health warning. Why is the humble chair being blacklisted? As the most passive activity behind lying down, being seated burns a bare minimum of...

Declutter your life and feel liberated

by: Yvana van den Hork
Have you ever looked around in your house upon coming home with a new purchase, to discover you can't find a suitable spot to put it away? Your new fancy mug can't be put up in the cupboard, because it is chockful of mugs and lovely tea cups already. Your new fancy dress can't be hung in the wardrobe as ther's no space left. Sounds familiar, huh? While there is a world...

Be kind to your bowels!

by: Yvana van den Hork
Probiotics or beneficial bacteria are important for good digestive health. In order to keep these same bacteria happy and thriving, they need to be fed PRE-biotics, in other words, fiber! Fiber is the undigestable part of vegetable foods. The most common source of fiber are beans and legumes, onions and garlic, cabbage, unpeeled potatoes as well as fruits such as...

How pets can improve your health

by: Yvana van den Hork
Nearly everyone of us lives with a pet in their household or has grown up with pets in their family as pets are such a source of joy. Pets can bring relief in stressful periods as the simple act of petting an animal can reduce stress levels and lower blood pressure, which goes as far as easing chronic pain due to the release of endorphins and curing post-traumatic...

Veggie happiness!

by: Yvana van den Hork
In the past week, we were enlightened with a blog article , telling us there is now final proof how people that eat more veggies, are happier. Isn't that awesome! Wow, how could this come about? We started wondering...could it be these folks, who outeat all others regarding veggies have all ducks in a row in which living a healthy lifestyle and eating healthily with lots...

Why do you look so familiar?

by: Yvana van den Hork
A common characteristic of most succesful politicians is their ability to remember people's names and faces very well. They have to, as networking is very important to them. While most of us are quite decent at remembering faces, but have a hard time at remembering names. Why? Apparently, faces are very informative. Expressions, eye contact, mouth movements, these are...

Sugar = sugar?!

by: Yvana van den Hork
While baking recipes used to simply recommend using flour and sugar, the hip cookbooks now recommend you to use agave syrup, or coconut sugar , because it is healthier and more natural. It sure sounds like more natural, but is it really? To start with agave syrup, the sap is harvested from entire agave plants upon which it is filtered and thickened on low heat. Agave...

Dry, drier, driest

by: Yvana van den Hork
Now autumn finally arrived, some of us will notice the skin gets drier and drier. In a mild case of extreme dryness, we will notice flaky and a reddened skin. In a more severe case, you will get chapped skin due to the cracked upper layer, which can be especially painful at the heels. What causes skin to dry out so much? In autumn, wind velocity often increases, which...

Seize the day, crack an egg?

by: Yvana van den Hork
In the past week, a discussion started between a dietician-foodie and a paleo/fitness-foodie, who embraced eating eggs without really giving a lot of arguments. The dietician wrote a critical article (in Dutch ) to show the flaws of that bold statement. For the past decades, the main argument against overconsumption of eggs has been how eggs are a major source of...

The unofficial history of sports supplements in the USA - Part I

by: Yvana van den Hork
Originally published by Testosterone.net (2001) By Garrison Kane This is a story that had to be told. As most everyone who's been involved with bodybuilding for any appreciable amount of time knows, the business of supplements has a history fraught with deceit and deception. The very term "snake oil," a colloquial expression used to describe any fraudulent product,...

The unofficial history of sports supplements in the USA - Part II

by: Yvana van den Hork
Originally published by Testosterone.net (2001) By Garrison Kane In Part I of this series, we traced the development of how supplements were designed and marketed. Since their very conception, supplements have always provided a pseudo panacea for virtually every health-related problem. Fatigue, slow muscle growth, even impotence can supposedly be cured with natural...

Why should I care about meal frequency?

by: Yvana van den Hork
Why should I care about eating several times a day? A straight answer is, because it works! It works if you wish to burn fat and maintain a good muscular attractive physique when you are over 40. Back in 2009 I was pretty darn fit and strong and in the best shape of my life while eating small meals five to six times a day and working out right after work around 7pm....

When is drinking alcohol bad for your health?

by: Yvana van den Hork
In the past decade we were told indulging in one or two glasses of alcohol (just one for women) a day is healthy. This was even one of the many recommendations in the national (Dutch) health guidelines. In the past year though, a drastic change occurred: the recommendation changed into zero to perhaps to a most one glass of alcohol a day! So, what gives? Alcohol and...

What causes muscle soreness?

by: Yvana van den Hork
Delayed onset of muscle soreness (DOMS) is a type of pain that most will experience after doing unusual exercise for the first time. There have been several theories to as what causes muscle soreness. At first lactic acid was blamed, but lactic acids disappears quite rapidly and the time period between exercise and soreness too large. It is now thought DOMS is the result...

BBQ-ing safely

by: Yvana van den Hork
This past week we were once again blessed with lovely warm summer weather. Nearly invariably, most meat lovers will almost instinctively take their BBQ out to prepare meat. But is having barbecued meat such a great idea? To be honest, it isn't, especially not when you allow your food to get burnt above a too highly lit flame. When meat is cooked at high temperatures, it...

Blood flow and vasodilation

by: Yvana van den Hork
Vasodilation is the process by which the blood vessels in the body relax and widen, allowing for greater blood flow. One of the main triggers of vasodilation is nitric oxide (NO). Therefore, anything that increases nitric oxide production in the body will also increase vasodilation. From an athlete's perspective, vasodilation allows for an increase in oxygen and nutrient...

Urban gardening

by: Yvana van den Hork
If someone told you a few years ago to enjoy gardening, there's a good chance this remark was met with a condescending smile as it was deemed to be a rather boring passtime. Not so anymore as especially growing your own food has become quite popular and rightly so. There is something magical about seeing a seed grow out to a vegetable, fruit or herb you can actually eat....

Training in the heat

by: Yvana van den Hork
After a warm spring and a seemingly endless monsoon in June, the hottest days of summer are lying ahead. For those of us, that want to train in the heat, a few tips for hot weather training. Listen to signals from your body: don't hesitate to stop exercising when you feel lightheaded, disoriented or nauseous. Don't start on a new and challenging training program in the...

A vegan life

by: Yvana van den Hork
Over the past decades, a vegetarian life-style has become much more common and accepted than say just 25 years ago, when it was difficult to eat a satisfying meal away from home. With the advent of wider vegetarian options, more and more people jump straight from a non-vegetarian lifestyle into veganism. What are some of the main problems you are going to encounter,...

Winning the rat race

by: Yvana van den Hork
Even though some might not admit it freely but just about everyone is taking part of the rat race. It might be your job or just the mere fact you try to keep yourself afloat by paying off your or loans, making sure you don't end up eating from soup kitchens or worse, 'sleeping with fishes' like Luca Brasi. Even 'keeping up with the Joneses' can be stressful. Being...

Tanning safely

by: Yvana van den Hork
Gone are the days we were trying to perfect a beautiful bronzed skin. Somehow, a milky white skin has become fashionable again, probably induced by campaigns warning us against 'evil sunrays' as the primary cause of skin cancer. Many won't even go outside, without slathering layer upon layer of the highest factor sun screen available (spf 50+ or more). Is this a smart...

OCD?! Obsessive behaviour

by: Yvana van den Hork
Whomever is actively dieting and counting calories for a prolonged period of time, may have been teased by friends of having OCD. Is counting calories obsessive behaviour? For an obese person, it is is easier to simply cut calories by cutting entire food groups such as wheat, foregoing desserts, eat from smaller plates or fast intermittently. For someone at a normal weight...
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