Studies show that the Pilates student can maximize health benefits if the century-old practice is combined with other exercise and a healthy diet. But does your routine now seem monotonous and less interesting than when you started?
For those on a budget insufficient for flying in hip personal trainers from around the globe, here are five (mostly inexpensive) products to potentially enhance your Pilates experience and re-energize your daily workout.
The simplest mistake made by many Pilates students is building their home studio around Yoga mats. Though there are many similarities between Yoga and Pilates mats, don’t assume that they are interchangeable.
A proper Pilates mat should be at least half an inch thick. Many thinner mats are marketed as Pilates mats, but are actually designed for Yoga, where standing poses are key. The rolling exercises in your workout such as “The Seal” are much more comfortable and fun to perform on a well-padded surface, so don’t fall for the ruse!
“The Reformer” is a bread-and-butter staple of any home Pilates studio. At a glance, a Reformer appears to be something akin to a weight-training machine, but look closer. The surface and springs are designed to create a ‘trampoline”... Read More »
Despite the widespread popularity of Pilates as an exercise discipline, some experts still doubt its functionality as a main source of health benefits and weight loss. However, doctors agree that when combined with a general lifestyle regimen, the century-old practice can help increase flexibility, muscular control, endurance and quality of life.
Here are a few ways to supplement your daily Pilates session to improve your shape and well-being.
Light and Vitamin-Rich Eating Habits
Pilates sessions do not burn a lot of calories. Unlike dieting around a hiking hobby or intense workouts at the gym, practitioners do not need – or want – a high-protein, high-caloric diet.
Instead, try dining on vitamin-rich, low-carb foods such as fish, chicken and vegetables. When eating out, look for restaurants which serve smaller portions of vitamin-rich and low-fat entrees. Leave the intense snacking to traditional bodybuilders, and choose meals that fit your preferred workout.
Skeptics are wary of the “spiritual” side of Pilates. But even for true believers, the best results in improving your mental health and state of mind occur when combining your exercise routine with relaxing, meditational hobbies and a low-key daily routine.
For instance, put those noisy indie rock albums away and listen... Read More »
Leptin, sometimes called the “satiety hormone” because it suppresses eating behavior, has long been known to play a role in preventing the development of diabetes. Unfortunately, its exact mechanism of action has remained unclear. Recent research, however, suggests that leptin signaling in the brain and elsewhere relies heavily on melanocortin receptor signaling. Additional research based on this original finding, has revealed that melanotan-2 (MT-2) may have the potential to circumvent leptin signaling and directly stimulate melanocortin receptors to fight obesity and prevent the onset of diabetes.
Leptin and Melanotan-2 Signaling Pathway
Leptin and melanotan-2 have effects in the GI system (stomach and intestines) as well as in the brain. It is the effects on the brain that determine satiety and mediate glucose uptake in peripheral tissues. The normal action of leptin on the brain is to increase glucose uptake in skeletal muscle tissue, brown adipose tissue (BAT), and the heart. It also suppresses glucagon production, a hormone that normally raises blood sugar levels. These effects directly reduce blood sugar and thus impacts an individual’s risk of developing diabetes.
Previous research has also indicated that leptin infusion cannot override uncontrolled diabetes or prevent the development of diabetes in animal models. Even though... Read More »