Personal trainer in Oxford and Bloxham, Dan Buda, talks about cholesterol

Posted by Dan Buda on March 2, 2018 in Blog

Cholesterol can be confusing. How can you tell bad  from good cholesterol, and how can you reduce bad levels? Can you burn IT off?

Cholesterol is a type of lipid, just as fats are. However, unlike fat, it  can’t be exercised off, sweated out, or burned for energy. It is found only in animal products, including meat, chicken, fish, eggs, organ meats, and high-fat dairy products.

Is it good or bad?

Just as homemade oil-and-vinegar dressing separates into a watery pool with a fat-slick topping, so would fats and cholesterol if they were dumped directly into the blood. To solve this dilemma, the body transports fat and Cholesterol by coating them with a water-soluble “bubble” of protein. This protein-fat bubble is called a lipoprotein.
* Low-density lipoproteins (LDLs) carry it to the tissues. This is “bad” Cholesterol, since high LDL levels are linked to increased risk of heart disease.
* High-density lipoproteins (HDLs) carry excess Cholesterol back to the liver, which processes and excrete it. HDLs are “good” Cholesterol – the more HDL you have, the lower your risk of developing heart disease.
* HDLs and LDLs are found only in your blood, not in food.

Test your cholesterol

Your risk of heart disease can be assessed with a blood cholestero test. According to expert guidelines:
* Total cholestero should be 5.0 mmol/L or less.
* LDL should be 3.0mmol/L or less after an overnight fast.
* HDL should be 1.0mmol/L or more.
* Total cholestero/HDL ratio should be less than 4.0.
However, if you have heart disease or diabetes total cholestero and LDL target readings will be lower.

Fat facts

The fats that supply calories, float in your blood and accumulate in your thighs and hips are called triglycerides. They can be saturated or unsaturated, and the unsaturated ones can be either monounsaturated or polyunsaturated. For every ounce of triglycerides you eat, you add 250 calories (or 9 calories per gram – the weight of a raisin) to your diet. Only saturated fats increase blood levels of cholesterol and heart disease risk.

Which fats are saturated?

In general, the harder a fat, the more saturated it is. Beef and dairy fats are mostly saturated fats. Liquid oils are usually unsaturated fats, including monounsaturated fats in olive and canola oils and polyunsaturated fats in safflower, corn, soybean and fish oils. Coconut, palm and palm kernel oils are exceptions to the rule – these liquid vegetable oils are highly saturated fats.

Fear of frying

Eating foods with a lot of saturated fat causes the amount of bad LDLs in your blood to increase while good HDLs decrease, increasing the risk of heart disease. Cut the saturated fat, and your blood cholesterol levels and your risk of heart disease decrease. Your risk of cancer also decreases. A diet with more polyunsaturated fats, rather than saturated fats, lowers total blood-cholestero levels, but unfortunately also lowers HDL levels, so you lose both good and bad . Olive oil is another story. This oil lowers total-blood cholesterol and LDL without causing HDL levels to drop. By using olive oil, you can decrease your total – cholesterol levels while maintaining your HDL levels, thus decreasing your risk of heart disease.

Fish oil also lowers heart disease risk. Consequently, olive and fish are the oils of choice.

Foods to Eat Before and After a Workout

Posted by Dan Buda on February 22, 2018 in Blog

Personal trainer in Oxford, Dan Buda talks about what foods to eat before and after a workout.

Power Up

The right foods before and after exercise can boost your results. Like a car uses gas, your body burns carbohydrates for fuel. They give you the energy to power through that jog or fitness class. When you’re done, refueling with a combination of protein and carbs can help you rebuild muscle. Ready to make the most of your workout?

Have the foods at the Right time

Aim to have a snack or meal 1 to 3 hours before your workout. You can have tummy troubles if you chow down right before. That’s because more blood goes to your muscles during exercise, leaving less for digestion. After exercise, your body is ready to refuel and rebuild muscle tissue. Eat within an hour of finishing.


Before : PB&J

The bread and jelly in this lunchbox staple serve up the carbs. They give you the energy your muscles need during exercise. The peanut butter adds a dose of protein, which helps you feel full, and that can help fend off post-workout cravings and binges. In fact, research shows that eating small amounts of peanuts can help you maintain a healthy weight. Headed on an easy walk or to yoga class? Half a sandwich may be all you need.

Before: Oatmeal With Low-Fat Milk and Fruit

Do you work out in the morning? Start your day with a bowl of high-fiber oatmeal and fruit. Your body digests the carbs in this combo more slowly, so your blood sugar stays steadier. You’ll feel energized for longer. For an extra dose of protein and bone-building calcium, stir in some low-fat milk.

Before: Fruit-and-Yogurt Smoothie

Smoothies are easy to digest, so you won’t feel sluggish during your workout. But many store-bought versions are high in added sugar. Whip up your own version with protein-rich yogurt and fruit, which packs in energy-boosting carbs. Blend it with water or ice to help you stay hydrated. Research shows that not getting enough fluids can zap your strength and endurance.

Before: Trail Mix

It’s known as a hiking staple, but trail mix is a good snack for any workout. Raisins give you a quick hit of energy that’s easy on the stomach. Mix a small handful of them with a few almonds, which are high in protein and heart-healthy unsaturated fat. They also have an antioxidant that may help your body use oxygen better — and give you better exercise results.

Before: Low-Fat Latte and an Apple

If you’re a coffee drinker, sip a latte before that morning or lunchtime fitness class. You’ll get protein from the milk, and the caffeine may ease muscle soreness and rev up calorie burn during exercise. Pair it with an apple for high-quality carbs. One warning: Caffeine can mess with your sleep, so avoid it in the afternoon. You could swap the latte for a glass of low-fat milk or piece of string cheese.

Before: Banana

Only have 5 or 10 minutes before your workout? Snack on a banana. Their easy-to-digest carbs power you up without weighing you down. They’re also a good source of antioxidants and potassium, a mineral that may help prevent muscle cramps. Toss one into your gym bag for a last-minute snack.

After: Egg and Whole-Wheat Toast

The toast’s carbs put back the energy you burned during exercise, while its fiber keeps your blood sugar levels even. Serve it with an egg to boost your results. They’re a complete protein, which means they have all nine of the essential amino acids your body uses to build muscle. No time for a post-workout scramble? Pack a hard-boiled egg with a whole-grain roll or rice crackers.

After: Chocolate Milk

This childhood favorite has the ideal ratio of carbs to protein — about 4 to 1 — to refuel and rebuild your muscles. One study found that athletes who had a glass after a workout recovered faster than those who had a carb-only sports beverage. Plus, chocolate milk is 90% water, so it replaces some of the fluids you lose during exercise.

After: Whole-Grain Turkey Wrap

After you wrap up your workout, whip up this easy snack or lunch. The whole grains give you high-fiber carbs, while the turkey has 12 grams of protein per 3-ounce serving. Swap the mayo for creamy avocado — it’s high in potassium and magnesium, two minerals that can fend off muscle cramps. Bonus: Avocado is also packed with heart-healthy unsaturated fats and plenty of vitamins.

After: Greek Yogurt and Fruit

A cup of this creamy treat serves up more than 20 grams of protein. Topping your bowl with fruit adds energy-boosting carbs. If you use antioxidant-rich blueberries, you’ll get even more of a benefit. Research shows that eating them after a workout can help with the muscle inflammation brought on by exercise.

After: Salmon With Sweet Potato

This fish is high in protein and omega-3s — heart-healthy fats that can ease the post-workout muscle inflammation that causes soreness. Pair salmon with a sweet potato for 25 grams of protein , 26 grams of carbs and 4 grams of fiber to keep you full. You’ll also get all the immune-boosting vitamin A you need in a day. Serve your sweet potato roasted or mashed, but skip the high-calorie butter and cream. Use a drizzle of olive oil instead.

After: Chicken, Brown Rice, and Veggies

There’s a reason skinless chicken breast is thought of as a slim-down food: Half of one packs in 27 grams of protein in only 142 calories. It also has a lot of vitamin B-6, a nutrient important for your immune system. Serve it with brown rice and veggies for the right combination of carbs and nutrients.

Before, During, and After: Water

Make sure you have plenty of water. How much? Use the following guidelines:

  • Before exercise: About 2 to 3 cups
  • During exercise: About 1/2 to 1 cup every 15 to 20 minutes
  • After exercise: About 2 to 3 cups for every pound you lose during exercise (you can weigh yourself before and after your workout).

After: Sports Drink?

If you exercise for an hour or less, water is all you need to stay hydrated. But if you go for longer, you need to replace electrolytes. These are minerals, such as sodium, potassium, and magnesium, that help you stay hydrated. You lose them when you sweat. Look for a drink that has electrolytes, like a sports beverage or coconut water.

Foods to Avoid

Steer clear of rich, greasy foods. Fat takes your body longer to digest, which can lead to an upset stomach. For some people, lots of fiber or protein doesn’t work before exercise.

Every body is different, so pay attention to what works for you. 

Guys: Don’t Make These 10 Health Mistakes

Posted by Dan Buda on February 20, 2018 in Blog

Personal trainer in Oxford , Dan Buda talks about 10 Health Mistakes

Ditch the Doc
You already know you need to drop a few pounds and cut back on the beer and potato chips. Besides, you feel fine. Men are geniuses when it comes to finding reasons not to see the doctor. But one of the most important things you can do for your health is schedule — and show up for — a regular visit.
Think You Can’t Have a Heart Attack
The “Big One” is something most guys worry about for their dad or granddad. But the threat is often there for much younger men. If heart disease runs in your family, it could find you as early as your 30s. No matter what your age is, make it a point to take care of your ticker.
Ignore the Snore
Sawing logs at night? About half of guys who snore have something called obstructive sleep apnea. It does more than just annoy the person next to you. This disorder can make you stop breathing for a few seconds. It’s also linked to heart disease and high blood pressure.
Skip the Sunscreen
We’re not just talking about golf or beach days. You should slather on a product with an SPF 30 or higher every time you go outside to prevent skin cancer. Most guys never put it on their faces — or any other exposed skin. Protect yourself.
Refuse to Get Help for Impotence
Don’t be ashamed. Bedroom problems have nothing to do with your masculinity. Chances are they aren’t caused by your state of mind, either. The main cause of impotence is usually a lack of blood flow to the penis. This can also be a sign of heart trouble, so put your pride aside and see the doc.
Drink Away the Blues
More women than men get depressed. That’s part of the problem — the idea that it’s a “female problem” often keeps the more than 6 million men who have it from seeking help. As a result, more guys turn to drugs and alcohol to help them feel better. This just makes depression that much harder to spot — and treat.
Go With the Flow
How many times have you gone to the bathroom today? Really, who has time to keep track? Maybe you should. If you go more than eight times a day or more than twice at night, it could be more than a nuisance. It could be a sign of a medical problem like enlarged prostate, overactive bladder (OAB), or even some forms of cancer. Talk to your doctor about it.
Keep Your Mouth Shut
In the U.S., women are more likely than men to get routine dental checkups. But guys need to see the dentist regularly, too. Not only because they can spot and prevent oral problems, but sitting back and saying “ah” can also reveal symptoms of things like diabetes, Crohn’s disease, lupus, and even leukemia.
Stick With Meat and Vegetables
It’s a rare guy who gets enough fruits and vegetables during the day. Doctors suggest four to five servings of each for a heart-healthy diet. If that’s not enough, eating the good stuff also lowers the odds that you’ll have a stroke, cancer, or digestive problems. And it keeps your blood sugar in check.
Tempt Fate
Some guys just love to drink, smoke, gamble, drive fast, or jump out of planes. Sure these things are fun, but all of them can be bad for your health. Truth is, men are more likely than women to do all these things. Why? Some guys do drink more, which messes with their judgment. Others just spend less time worrying about the outcome of their actions. Sometimes, it pays to think twice.

Sources of Protein That Aren’t Meat

Posted by Dan Buda on February 14, 2018 in Blog

Personal trainer in Oxford , Dan Buda talks about importance of protein for our bodies .

As we age, protein is important for keeping up muscle mass to stay active, avoid injury, and support a healthy immune system.

Choosing non-meat proteins in later years can be a good idea for more than just health or ethical reasons. “Many non-meat protein sources are lower in cost, and if you’re on a fixed income, then watching the food budget can be helpful,” says Angela Catic, MD, an assistant professor of internal medicine, section of geriatrics, at Baylor College of Medicine.

Dental issues like missing teeth and dentures can come into play, too — making a piece of steak or hamburger hard to chew. But there are plenty of ways to get protein besides meat. You just have to know what you’re looking for.

Proteins That Pack a Punch

Meatless protein sources that will give you the biggest bang for your buck are called “complete” proteins.

“Complete proteins have the essential amino acids, or building blocks, that the body requires, in adequate amounts,” says Lauri Wright, PhD, a spokeswoman for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and assistant professor of nutrition at the University of North Florida.

Meats are complete proteins, but many plant-based proteins aren’t. It’s good to know the difference and reach for complete proteins when you can. Some non-meat complete proteins are:

Eggs/Milk/Cheese / Soy / Quinoa

As for “incomplete” proteins, you can buddy them up with another protein source to make a total package. “Many traditional food complements work perfectly for this,” Wright says. “Beans and rice, which is a staple of many Hispanic cultures, is a great example of joining two incomplete plant proteins together.”

Foods That Fuel You

Wherever it comes from, it’s best to get protein in small, regular spurts, rather than one big meal. Loading up on your protein all at once won’t give your body the steady stream of nutrients it needs to last throughout the day. “Your protein intake needs to be spread out through the day — about 25 to 30 grams with each meal,” says Catic.

You don’t have to do a complete menu overhaul to raise your daily protein, says Catic. “It can be as easy as having a peanut butter sandwich for a snack or sprinkling flax or chia seeds into cereal or yogurt.”

Think about the foods you already eat, and build from there. Here are some of the best non-meat protein sources:

Eggs: These are nearly perfect proteins, says Wright. “They have almost precise amounts of all the essential building blocks you need.”

And at only 70 calories an egg, you’re not getting too many calories.

Eggs have the added bonus of being easy to make ahead (hard-boil them and keep them in the fridge for a quick snack) and easy to add to foods you already eat, like salad. They can be a simple dinner option, too — cook them up with some veggies to make an omelet, whip up a frittata, or bake them in a pie crust with some spinach and low-fat cheese for a tasty quiche.

Dairy: Look for low-fat options for your protein fix. Cottage cheese, yogurt, and low-fat cow’s milk are all pumped with it. Pour milk on your cereal for breakfast, or have cheese with your snack crackers. You can even slide in some dairy protein for a delicious dessert. “I sometimes encourage people to have frozen yogurt if they enjoy a treat,” says Catic.

Seeds: Quinoa is a complete protein that has all nine essential amino acids. If you’re not familiar with it, think of it like a grain or pasta. Use it in dishes in place of rice or couscous, for example, and you’ll give your dish an automatic protein boost. Also, chia and flax seeds are small enough to sneak into yogurt, cereal, smoothies, or oatmeal without changing the flavor much.

Soy: Tofu might be the first food you think of when you hear the word “vegetarian.” That’s because it’s a common substitute in dishes that typically use meat. Cubed tofu can be cooked and added to salads or burritos in place of chicken. Or for a quick soy snack, steam a bag of edamame — soybeans in pods you can pop into your mouth while they’re still warm.

Greens: Veggies like spinach and kale are an easy way to get a whole host of nutrients, including protein. Add a layer to sandwiches, or fill a bowl and top with your favorite veggies for a healthy salad.

Smoothies can give you your greens, too: Along with fruits, milk, yogurt, or even a dab of peanut butter, you can also throw some spinach into your blender. “Spinach has 5 grams of protein per cup, so it’s not huge, but it’s great because you’re getting other things like vitamin A and calcium and iron,” says Catic.

Beans: Pick a bean, any bean, and you’ve got protein. “Beans are a fabulous source,” says Wright.

And they come with lots of bonuses, like fiber, folate, antioxidants, and vitamins. Beans can beef up soups, or — in the case of chickpeas — be blended into tasty dips like hummus.

Nuts: Peanut butter is a no-brainer when it comes to easy protein for your daily diet. Add a spoonful to your oatmeal, or spread some on whole-grain crackers or fruit. Skip the liquid nuts, though. “I don’t recommend nut milks as a protein source because they don’t have the protein in them that the soy and the cow’s milk do,” says Wright.

Good Green Tea Smoothie

Posted by Dan Buda on January 26, 2018 in Recipes

This good green tea smoothie is packed with grapes, spinach, green tea and avocado. A touch of honey adds sweetness.
3 cups frozen white grapes
2 packed cups baby spinach
1 1/2 cups strong brewed green tea, (see Tip), cooled
1 medium ripe avocado, 
1 teaspoons honey



Combine grapes, spinach,green tea, avocado and honey in a blender; blend until smooth. Serve immediately.
Tip: To brew strong green tea, use twice the amount of tea (or two tea bags), but do not over steep. Green tea should be steeped for no longer than 3 minutes; over steeping will give the tea a bitter taste.

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Bleinheim triathalon 2017- Thank you Dan ! Thank you Dan for training me for this event . it was really great and i am so happy that i have done it. Thank you for being so dedicated to my  3 months of training and i could not have done it without you. blenheim triathlon 2017

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