Showing posts from 2011

BEATTHEBELLY - Avoid the Christmas Belly!

'Tis the season to be jolly!

So you want to enjoy the Christmas season. I really enjoy home cooking and a few drinks in the village pub at Christmas catching up with my old mates.

But how do you avoid becoming a fat Santa?

1. Remember you have a choice what you eat!
Every time you are offered a drink or something to eat or you are bored watching the Queens Speech and reach for the snacks or are out at the office christmas party review your options and dont rely on the autopilot.

2.Bear in mind that you will have to burn off all the calories you eat - and drink .
Don't forget alcohol contains many hidden calories and that your new years resolution may be set back by needing to lose a half stone in January just to get started!

3. Every time something reaches your lips think - do I really need this?
This rule applies especially to seconds - wait 20 minutes for seconds to let your stomach tell you if you're full. Keep up with the fruit and veg.

4. Don't overindulge on fatt…

Note the Nutrition Facts on food labels

Putting the information on food packaging into context is important. Food producers are less keen on advertising the bad side of what is on sale and often the labelling is misleading.

I have recently started looking at food labels to find out if the food I am eating is high in fat and sugar and salt, because in order to live longer I am trying to cut back on these three dietary components.

Firstly I noticed that I often made a mistake in calculating the amount of fat in the actual whole packet rather than just "a portion", as I tend to eat the whole bag of crisps once open.

For example I just had a camembert and chilli jam sandwich. Looking afterwards at the cheese packaging I was surprised to see that a portion was only 9% of my daily fat intake as an adult..which made me feel better, until I discovered that the portion was 30g! I had just eaten at least 90 g of the cheese in one doorstep sandwich and hence was shocked at the amount of fat I had just eaten in one meal 30%…

Men's health General Questions

NHS Direct- Mens Health Pages This website above is a good place to start if you have specific quesions about your health or need advice on some common topics - check it out.

#Beatthebelly Heart health lost early in life - Health - CBC News

Heart health lost early in life - Health - CBC News:

'via Blog this'

Exactly what i have been going on about for years - dmage is doe while we are young and from then on...


Ideal heart health is being lost even before the teen years, a U.S. study suggests.

To reach that bleak forecast for cardiovascular health, researchers analyzed data for 5,547 Americans aged 12 to 19. Many of them had high blood sugar levels, were overweight or obese, didn't eat enough fruits or vegetables, failed to get enough physical activity and smoked — risk factors for heart disease and Type 2 diabetes, researchers found. About 35 per cent of boys and girls in the U.S. were overweight or obese, a new study suggests. IStock

"What was most alarming about the findings of this study is that zero children or adolescents surveyed met the criteria for ideal cardiovascular health," said lead author Christina Shay, an assistant professor of epidemiology at the University of Oklahoma Healt…

Longevity in Your 40s - Longevity To-Dos for Your 40s

"Staying Fit For Life" mens health event in #York 15/11/11

If you are in the neighbourhood come on down for a pint some fab curry and a free healthcheck at 8pm 15th

#BEATHEBELLY - Aerobic vs Weight Training for Fat Loss

If you are overweight there are two types of fat you need to lose though two types of regular exercise:

- VISCERAL fat - around the internal organs in your abdomen (this is dangerous as it means there is likely to be fatty build up in your arteries causing Atherosclerosis

Visceral fat is best lost by aerobic exercise IE getting out of breath - but you need to exercise for more than 20 minutes continuously to kick in the fat burning system and lose visceral fat - exercises like running, cycling, swimming and aerobics would cause this type of fat to be burned up.

- SUBCUTANEOUS fat - under the skin, the "spare tyre" type of fat is from overeating and is laid down by the body for storage of excess calories eaten in the diet

This type of fat is best lost by doing weight training ie lifting weights in a controlled way regularly which helps the muscles to grow and use up available fat reserves around them in the skin.

It is worth including both weight training and aerobic exerc…

6 Habits to Chisel a Solid 6-Pack

6 Habits to Chisel a Solid 6-Pack:

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Yes we are back with more tips to beat your belly!

this is not about abs but more about the keg as mentioned in the last post. Take a look at this little list to help you lose the keg, and maybe even find your washboard abs propping up the keg!

Dr Ben Sinclair Twitter: @menshealthtips Sinclair Health Limited

Men's Health: 'Moderate Exercise,' Explained | Men's Health News

Men's Health: 'Moderate Exercise,' Explained | Men's Health News:

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The benefits of moderate exercise - multitudinous! check out what they are to increase your motivation to increase your moderate exercise and increase from walking pace.

Dr Ben Sinclair Twitter: @menshealthtips Sinclair Health Limited

Chocolate curbs stroke in women, study suggests: What about men? - HealthPop - CBS News

BEATTHEBELLY - Sixpack or Keg?

Back in the Seventies and Eighties a Jogging craze swept the world.

In the Nineties Marathons became mainstream.

In the Naughties the Triathlon was the latest fad.

Today in the Tweenies, weightloss and the beach body still top the culture charts. With TV shows about embarrassing bodies and how to look good naked, body image is as important as it ever was with weight loss and a lean mean man machine the main idol everyone is striving for.

We have Gok Wan proposing "How to look good naked", helping real shaped women realise the truth behind airbrushed pictures in the media of young women who can wear anything and look great having just fallen out of bed.

Where is the male counterpart series or equivalent?

Men are bombarded with images of washboard "abs" which, if you believe Mens Health Magazine, are the most important thing to look for in a real man; no room is left for integrity and a real wobbly keg rather than an 8 pack.

So weight loss continues to plague us…

BBC News - Weight loss plan 'lacks evidence'

BBC News - Weight loss plan 'lacks evidence':

'via Blog this'

This story from the BBC shows tha you cant just change your mindset to lose weight, it has to be coupled with exercise and lifestyle changes in an holistic manner so that the whole package is slowly changed.

The article might at first glance be suggesting that it is not worth looking at changing thinking around food, but on reflection I feel this evidence points towards an holistic approach to weight loss in all areas mind body relationships and wellbeing.

Dr Ben Sinclair Twitter: @menshealthtips Sinclair Health Limited

BEATTHEBELLY - Blitz Your Health Goals Step by Step

Goal setting is a thorny challenge - how high can we afford to set the bar by creating realistic yet achievable goals without selling ourselves short?
The old saying goes if you aim for nothing you will hit it every time; equally there are plenty of proverbs prompting action over inaction. So how can we make and achieve goals in an upward ascent to reach the pinnacle of overall health we strive for?

A recent practical article from Harvard Health describes a way of making and achieving realistic goals step by step. This stepwise approach is key to achieving the most achievable goals first, enabling an attempt a new higher goal - like training to climb everest by starting with smaller mountains and working up to the main event.

If you are trying to lose weight you need to set a realistic timeframe and fast weight loss is never healthy or sustainable long term; reaserch shows many yo-yo dieters put it all back on again in the following weeks; any weight loss needs to be sustainable and…

Obese Americans don’t actually realize they are obese

Obese Americans don’t actually realize they are obese:

'via Blog this'

So across the water 70 % of obese americans do not realise that they are obese and facing serious health problems as a result.

I'm guessing we are heading the same way in the UK.

The studies make interesting reading in this article searching for a societal cure for the obesity epidemic.

Dr Ben Sinclair
Twitter: @menshealthtips
Sinclair Health Limited

Weigh Yourself Often - 10 Strategies for Successful Weight Loss

Weigh Yourself Often - 10 Strategies for Successful Weight Loss:

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Ok I know I have just cited mens health mag yesterday. Sometimes they quote research worth repeating and there is a reason why they are the best selling mens magazine in the UK.

This article states 10 strategies for successful weight loss - why not pick one and give it a go this week?

Dr Ben Sinclair
Twitter: @menshealthtips
Sinclair Health Limited

Make The Office Work For You | MEN'S HEALTH

Make The Office Work For You | MEN'S HEALTH:

'via Blog this'

This article has a point and backs up many of my recent posts on staying fit and active, keeping a healthy diet and lifestyle to reduce heart disease and cancers.

Dr Ben Sinclair Twitter: @menshealthtips Sinclair Health Limited

BEATTHEBELLY - Men Need Exercise. Sloth = Death.

Current guidelines suggest that the minimum exercise a man needs to do is 20 minutes a day getting out of puff ie raising the heart rate above 120 bpm.

Bear in mind that this is the MINIMUM daily requirement for prevention of cancer and heart disease amongst other preventable diseases.

If you want to lose weight you will need get puffed for more than 20 minutes; you will only start to burn fat when you exercise for more than 20 minutes at a time, as the first 20 minutes of any exercise are fuelled by sugar stored in the muscles.

The best way cover this daily exercise requirement is to include exercise in your journey to work; then any extra intentional exertion on top is a bonus in terms of weight loss.

You may find setting a physical goal or target helpful in achieving motivation - take a look at this recent NHS article: couch to 5k for inspiration of a typical guy doing more exercise.

If you dont already exercise then brisk walking is a good start, slowly increasing to running or p…

BBC News - Go Figure: Will we really keep getting fatter?

BBC News - Go Figure: Will we really keep getting fatter?:

'via Blog this'

Interesting BBC critique of recent Lancet paper stating that half of UK men will be obese by 2030 at current rates of increase.

Go figure

Dr Ben Sinclair Twitter: @menshealthtips Sinclair Health Limited

Pyramid or plate? Explore these healthy diet options -

Pyramid or plate? Explore these healthy diet options -

'via Blog this'

A helpful way of looking at your diet and what you should be eating, depending on your background and staple diet items

Dr Ben Sinclair Twitter: @menshealthtips Sinclair Health Limited

Barefoot running shoes: Better than traditional running shoes? -

Barefoot running shoes: Better than traditional running shoes? -

'via Blog this'

A colleague is interested in barefoot running and this is an interesting kit transition debate. check it out

Dr Ben Sinclair
Twitter: @menshealthtips
Sinclair Health Limited

Testosterone drops when men become fathers | Science | The Guardian

Testosterone drops when men become fathers | Science | The Guardian:

'via Blog this'

An interesting read in the guardian. The most likely cause is that those men who are doing childcare are not able to do high levels of exercise which raise testosterone levels.

Oh well at least if my testosterone falls I may go bald slower!

Dr Ben Sinclair
Twitter: @menshealthtips
Sinclair Health Limited

The Best Weight Loss Trick of All Time

BEATTHEBELLY Tip - Thinking About Food

Much of the current obesity epidemic is due to convenience and priority decisions based on lack of time.

Over the decades we have spent a greater percentage of our day time at work, often using time saving short cuts when we come to cook dinner by using pre-prepared foods or just eating out.

Many processed foods or pre-prepared items contain much higher levels of salt, fat and sugar than would normally be in food we cook from scratch ourselves.

Snacks are a good example of this, taking crisps as the main culprit, which often contain a significant supply of your RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) of salt and fat in one small packet.

Cooking sauces are another source of excess salt and fat. Processed foods like pizza, pies, ready meals are just a few on the list to reduce in your diet if you want to keep a healthy weight and reduce risks of cardiovascular disease. These time saving devices may ultimately shorten your life so in the end you really havent saved time, merely condensed …


What is the thinking behind your size?

In Yorkshire men are still praised by women for finishing large portions of food. An XL appetite used to be a prized quality when it meant men were strong and worked the land and could put away two plates of pie and peas with Yorkshire pud; but this traditional attitude doesn't cut the mustard these days.

Lets take a step back and look at this objectively.

Have you always been overweight, or has this weight gain come as a result of identifiable events or triggers? Do you really want to lose weight? Why?

Do you eat too fast? Do you have to finish the plate? Are you known as the big guy or expected to eat and drink more than anyone else? Why?

What do you attribute your XL size to? Many men just accept the status quo after they find they cant lose the weight and give up trying.

Check out this video from a friend who had some success after realising he was overweight and took definitive action to change his size.

Dr Ben Sinclair
Twitter: @men…


So far I have updated this blog daily in the week and sometimes at the weekend.

I am now finding it is a challenge to do this and still perform my important role as a dad. Instead of a laptop on my knees I have a beautiful baby girl to look at and care for.

To keep this up I am going to reduce the frequency of blog posts to alternate days in order to keep sustainable. I may still reference and post the odd interest story or relevant article in-between posts.

I hope you continue to enjoy the posts, please comment with other topics you might like covered here.

Dr Ben Sinclair
Twitter: @menshealthtips
Sinclair Health Limited

#BEATTHEBELLY: My weight story. Find Your Keys to Success

How did you get to the weight you are now?

We all have a back story.

My story?

I used to be active at school; I was short and "stocky" and had a taste for sweets. As a child I had taken steroid tablets for asthma which tended to delay growth and cause weight gain through appetite - but maybe I was just small and greedy.
I was the second shortest guy in the class at 14. I was a good sprinter on the rugby field and rarely fell over as I was so close to the ground.

Then I grew, I stretched out and became a skinny 6 ft 11 stone bean pole - my sisters teased me for being a "L" shape as I had big feet and wore DM boots to complete the picture. I liked rock climbing and began to get into cycling mainly to get around. Outdoors exercise became a touchstone.

When I went to university I joined the territorial army and spent weekends running around with with my weapon, heavy webbing full of ammo and a back pack full of 15 Kg of kit - I began to "Fill out" as m…

#BEATTHEBELLY Breakfast Tip: Eat a Full English Breakfast

But that is really unhealthy!

Ok so it depends on what you include, how it is cooked and how often you eat it.

If you have heart disease or high cholesterol then I don't recommend this.

If you suffer from high blood pressure the salt content may well be harmful to your blood pressure and is therefore not recommended

But if you are active and wanting to lose weight then I can recommend this excellent protein rich start to the day up to twice a month as part of a balanced diet and exercise regime.

Don't forget, a fry up is red meat rich so to avoid bowel cancer you should only eat red meat twice a week including this fry up.

High protein breakfasts keep you full for longer and the body uses energy to break it down slowly, resulting in a happy full man who doesnt need to eat much for a while!

To improve the meal I would make a few recommendations to the traditional "fry up"

- grill back bacon with the rind removed - avoid streaky bacon
- poach the eggs increase eggs t…

#BEATTHEBELLY Breakfast Tip: Have Breakfast!

Just to clarify - breakfast IS the most important meal of the day if you are trying to lose weight.

If you don't eat and drink first thing your body remains in starvation (hence the word break-fast as you have fasted from food overnight) and you won't be burning more energy but just conserving your reserves as your body slows down and goes into hibernation.

"But I just need a black coffee in the morning and I am fine till dinner time with a few snacks" I hear you say. With this work related habit of early rising, not eating and trying to jump start the machine with a coffee kick you are only heading for a slump later that day with associated craving for sugar rich foods around elevensies.

If you want to start losing weight, eat breakfast; even if it is a glass of water and a banana.

See this post for more on this topic.

Tomorrow indulge yourself with a full English breakfast as per the blog.

Dr Ben Sinclair
Twitter: @menshealthtips
Sinclair Health Limited

#BEATTHEBELLY Breakfast Tip: Just Add Fruit

Here in the UK its the season for soft fruit.

Fresh, wild and cultivated fruit is literally dripping from hedgerows and orchards all over the country at this time of year.

Today for breakfast I had swiss musesli with fresh blackberries and blueberries - yum!

This mix of fast acting fruit sugars with slow release carbs from oats and nuts is the ideal start, providing one of your 5-a-day.

The added fruit bulks up the meal to keep you going for a long morning while giving added vitamin C to fight off cancer and colds into the mix. The sweetness of soft fruit avoids the need to add refined sugars to cereals for taste. You may eat less muesli as volume is replaced by the fibre in the fruit so overall its a healthy addition to your dietary intake of vitamins, energy and fibre!

Collecting fruit is quite a relaxing past-time which can be beneficial for stress reduction and provides an excuse for some activity outdoors on a summers evening.

So go get some blackberries from the nearest bramb…

#BEATTHEBELLY 2000 pageviews!

We just hit 2000 pageviews since starting this blog for fathers day this year!

We are now firing on all cylinders again with a new series this week focusing on breakfasts.

Follow or sign up to the RSS and lets BEATTHEBELLY by Christmas!

Thanks for looking! Sign up to the blog

Follow me on Twitter: @menshealthtips

Dr Ben Sinclair
Twitter: @menshealthtips
Sinclair Health Limited

BBC News - Call to measure duration of obesity

BBC News - Call to measure duration of obesity

This BBC article shows the extent of the Belly problem in the UK - check it out!
Dr Ben Sinclair Sinclair Health Limited Twitter: @menshealthtips

#BEATTHEBELLY Breakfast Tip: Reduce Cholesterol With Oats

People have been eating oats for millennia.

Oats have been traditionally linked to porridge and the Scots, but have made a resurgence in modern dietary advice due to new found cholesterol reducing properties.

So why are Oats so good?

Wel, when eaten they provide a slow release supply of energy as they take time to digest keeping you fuller for longer. Recent research has discovered that they absorb cholesterol in the digestive tract, taking it out of the system rather like a sponge.

Oats are also an excellent source of fibre to keep the bowels regular, reducing risks of bowel cancer by avoiding slow transit and removing toxin deposits.

Muesli is a mix of various rolled grains and nuts and dried fruit in an oat base. This forms an excellent combination as the nuts and dried fruit add taste, fibre and variety of energy sources and vitamins which are hard to gain elsewhere in the diet such as selenium which is good for the prostate.

So even if you don't have high cholesterol its a go…

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip: Picking Up The Baton

I just became a father to a beautiful girl called Scarlett who is 3 weeks old today.

All my advice on keeping weight down has been very much a reality for me in the last 3 weeks as there has been little I could control in my environment and I really wanted to avoid weight gain.

In the limbo of hospital I couldn't really exercise, as I spent every day driving to the hospital to see my wife and newborn child in the hope of bringing them home by car.

Eventually with little sleep catch up after 48 hours wakefullness through labour, terrible hospital food and fending for myself at home with an empty fridge, we came home.

The timetable has been a bit different over the last few days with a 3 hourly feeding program to encourage the little one to gain weight. Our church and friends have been amazing at bringing around food every night for dinner. I have adopted a commando lifestyle, eating whenever food is available as you never know when the next meal will be.

I have managed one run …

BEATTHEBELLY - On hold while fatherhood commences

Sorry for the delay in postings -I have been in hospital the last 5 days making sure my wife and newborn Daughter are cared for.

Pleased to say we are now all home, but don't anticipate doing any blogging for up to 2 weeks now, so take a rain check and I will be back as soon as I can.

Dr Ben Sinclair Sinclair Health Limited Twitter: @menshealthtips"Linked In

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip - When To Eat The Main Meal

If you were trying to gain weight when would you eat the most in any 24 hour period?

All good Sumo wrestlers know that if you eat a large meal then go to sleep invariably you will gain weight. Your body is at rest and will fully digest any food you eat then store energy as you wont be needing much energy when asleep.

Reasearch shows that the largest meal of the day should be eaten in the middle of your working day (whenever that is) as you will immediately use the energy for activities after the meal.

So try to eat as early as possible if you eat a larger meal at night, don't eat after 9 pm. If possible try to have a larger lunch and a lighter evening meal.

Dr Ben Sinclair
Sinclair Health Limited
The Optimise Clinic

Twitter: @menshealthtips"> Linked In

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip - Apples and Blackberries Encourage Health Goals

You may be reading the blog on your smartphone.

Whether you like Apples, Blackberries or Androids they can be good for your health!

Your command of technology is the key here. You are in the driving seat.

There are many apps that can help you goal set, track and map your road to success.

I used the Apple free app iGoalinformer to help monitor my weight and calorie intake.

I now use TargetWeight app which is simpler as I am not montoring my calorie intake.

I use MAPMYRIDE to track my cycling and adidas MiCoach to track and map my running.

If you have a smart phone check out your app store and look for suitable software.

Even if you are on a desktop there are plenty of free sites competing for your membership to help achieve your goals.

Feel free to post any helpful links in comments below as this is an ever changing marketplace.

Dr Ben Sinclair

Sinclair Health Limited

Twitter: @menshealthtips"Linked In

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip - Get More Sleep

Do you sleep less than 8 hours a day?

Research shows that if you do you are likely to have a shorter lifespan and also more likely to be obese.

When we sleep our bodies have a maintenance program that kicks in to get us ready for the day, but if we cut this short the system can go out of whack.

Along with eating breakfast to kick start the machine, sleep is required to maintain it.

The sleep / wake cycle releases various hormones such as cortisol to prime the body or put it into hibernation for the night.

Working night shifts can interfere with this process, hence those who work permanent nights are more likely to die young and be obese.

So get more sleep! An average of 8 hours a day is about right.

Dr Ben Sinclair Sinclair Health Limited Twitter: @menshealthtips Linked In:

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip: When It All Falls Down

Some plan for the worst, then anything that happens is a bonus.

Some spend all their time planning and never get to the execution phase.

Others never plan at all.

We know from experience that in life accidents happen; some events can't be planned for.

You may have noticed a few gaps in the days on the blog recently.

A few unexpected events have happened recently which pulled the rug out and really challenged my resolve to stay on track with my diet and exercise goals.

So how can we prepare for the unexpected?
What happens to your ideal regime when it all falls down around you?

My challenge was a family emergency on top of the anticipation of becoming a dad any day now.

We had a call in the night and rushed to the bedside of a close relative who had been involved in a hit and run. He is a father of young children, about my age and one of my closest friends.

At that point when we didn't know if he would wake up or if he was going to move or speak or recognise people, all o…

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip- set your goal in stone

Steven Covey the author of 7 habits fame suggests that you write down your goals.

This way you are far more likely to achieve them.

To encourage accountability tell your friends family and work colleagues about your resolve (in brief detail).

You are far more likely to achieve your goal of weight loss and all the other asprirations going with it if you write them down.

Why not start a journal?

Dr Ben Sinclair Sinclair Health Limited Twitter: @menshealthtips Linked In:

BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip - Stay Active at the Weekend

Its tempting to think you need a break from everything at the weekend including your healthy lifestyle plans!

I often lose the motivation as I feel I deserve a treat and need to recover from the exertions and stress of the working week.

However, when I plan some exercise (sooner in the weekend the better) I feel energised and active again, I tend to eat less, feel calmer and more relaxed and sleep better ready for monday.

This weekend plan some fun activity with partner, family or friends - get to the open country, do a new route, plan a day out with keeping active at the heart of it.

Go on, you will feel better!

Dr Ben Sinclair Sinclair Health Limited Twitter: @menshealthtips Linked In:

BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip - Beat the Beer Belly!

What ingredients are used to make beer? Water, hops and sugar. Alcohol as a chemical is closely related to sugar, so its no surprise that alcohol contains alot of energy in the form of carbohydrates.

Alcohol also stimulates hunger so guess what - after a few beers we all need a large kebab!

Alcohol is processed through the liver which is the main processing plant in the body for sugar and other vitamins and dietary breakdown products. If you are drinking alot you will usually gain weight and slow down the of other vital processes; when the liver gets damaged through excess alcohol or sugar it lays down fat.

The recommended units per week for a man are 21.
This means around 10-11 pints of medium strength beer, 21 shots of spirits, or about 2 bottles of wine - but hopefully spread over the week and not all at once!

Take a look at your alcohol intake - if you are exercising you will find more stamina if you reduce alcohol.
Generally you will lose weight faster if you reduce alcohol …

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip - Nudge Your Buddy

If you need to strenthen your resolve you need to buddy up.

Choose someone you know well enough to talk about your weight and who you are happy to accept a challenge from.

Tell them about your aims and get them to keep you accountable through regular communication. If it cuts both ways this is helpful as you are both relying on each other and both able to challenge each other.

Share your challanges, barriers to success and your vices! These are the hardest things to overcome but your buddy may be able to see an alternative.

In the book Nudge a pact between two stockbrokers is described and seems to work very well as a deterrent to weight gain and a successful tool to weight loss - they both realised early on in their careers that with the hard work and hours they put in it was all too easy to gain weight - so they entered into a pact where either one could call a snap weigh in at any time and if the other was over his desired weight limit he paid £10,000 to the other! Apparently n…

BEATHEBELLY Daily Tip - Make or Break - How's it Going?

It is said that it takes 21 days to break a habit, probably it takes the same amount of time to gain a new habit.

So at 21 days after the launch of BEATTHEBELLY its time to review your resolve.

If you signed up and decided to lose a stone by Christmas, how is it going?

Your initial resolve may have faded or been strengthened; you may have started exercising and become injured through excessive enthusiasm; you may have lost alot of weight through a strict diet then lost enthusiasm for a life of boring food!

Now is the time to evaluate your effort and strengthen your resolve; think about asknig for support and neutralise any barriers to success.

Please comment below about what has worked, what has not; what advice has been helpful or useless, and any tips you have for other members of the BEATTHEBELLY community to encourage them on to a healthier life.

more tips to come this week for encouragement!

Dr Ben Sinclair Sinclair Health Limited Twitter: @me…

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip: Wait 20 4 Seconds

I love seconds - helpings of dinner that is.

I normally fill up on the main course, lots of meat and carbs and veg.

I am not really a pudding person because I can't be bothered to make them.

When my wife is away I will sometimes just eat large amounts of grilled steak, baked potato and peas. Once I got an offer on fillet steak and ate a pound of it at one sitting straight from the BBQ.

In Yorkshire men are praised (mostly by older motherly figures) for finishing mammouth plates of food or chastised gently if they do not finish the plate - it can even be rude not to ask for seconds!

So what makes us feel full?

Well the body is pretty savvy and it lets the brain know when your stomach is getting stretched to filling point which in turn flips the switch in your brain to "full"

The problem is that it takes 20 minutes for the message to be received and understood in the brain - in stone-age caveman circumstances, eating slowly and chewing a lot on tough tiger steaks you …

Show how its done: #BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip: Stop the Pop

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip: Shrink Your Plates

I was brought up to finish my plate. Like many of the little chef generation I wanted the prized lolly for finishing my dinner.

Where did this rule of "finish the plate" come from?

I would hazard guess that it comes from my parents who growing up in post-war Britain when rationing was still in force and my father saw his first Banana when he was ten years old.

At that stage food was scarce, high energy food was prized, expensive and considered a luxury treat; in fact any tasty food you got was worth eating, while anything else you got was probably just eaten because you were hungry. So if you didn't finish your plate something was seriously wrong or you were at the very least disrespecting the cook and provider of the meal.

When I was at Uni we did a nutritional survey using ourselves as the guinea pigs.
I found that I was eating 3x the recommended energy requirement per day (even finishing friends leftovers!) for a man of my age and size; at that time I could get a…

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip: Stop the Pop

So who told us it was OK to drink diet coke till it came out of our ears? Well unsurprisingly soft drinks manufacturers were the main culprits for mainstreaming fizzy pop into our homes and lives with their agenda of increased sales and profits at the expense of our health.

Their marketing created iconic links between: Coke and Football / Father Christmas, Basketball with PepsiMax and 7UP/Sprite; Lucozade with any sport; finally Dr Peppers with general craziness!

Recent research in the US has linked cola, pop and other fizzy drinks containing artificial sweeteners like Aspartame to a higher risk of developing diabetes, obesity, heart disease and high blood pressure amongst other ailments.

On one level you should stop the pop to reduce unnecessary calories and caffeine and save your teeth.
On another you should stop drinking stuff containing sweeteners becuase of aforementioned risks.

When I work an Emergency GP night shift I will oft…

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip: Get to work on the way to work

So you want to lose weight? I keep advising people to become more active - but how can you fit this in to daily life?

We have become a nation of workaholics which creates problems for fitting in active lifestyle around the demands of work.

But did you know that you're 15% more productive at work on a day that you exercise* before work? (* I.E. >20mins out of breath)

Some interesting research was recently published from Holland (ok so the land of the bicycle is very flat but hence a good place to do research on the subject of cycling) showing that employees who cycled to work took less sick days on average than other employees. More benefits of cycling to work!

So how about putting in some cycling to get you to work?

Start thinking about how you might cycle all or part of your route to work if thats your thing - its a great cardio workout and will provide your exercise requirements and make you more efficient; it may also save you time sat in traffic and you will certainly …

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip - Fill Up On Low Calorie Foods

So you want to lose weight.

What is one of the hardest things about this?

Being hungry of course.

If you're used to eating a large volume of food your body will still crave it when you reduce the portion sizes you are eating; even though you fill up on a pint of water before each meal you will soon feel hungry again.

So when you get hungry between your smaller portion meals what do you do?

After exercising, drinking more water, distracting yourself (boredom or stress often provokes hunger) you should find a food you can fill up on which won't break the calorie bank.

I chose carrots because they are easily available, cheap, tasty ( I like them fresh+raw from the fridge or better the allotment) and they have few calories compared to beer, cake, biscuits, bread, sweets or other things I might reach for.

Carrots also have the added bonus of giving you a healthy skin tone which when surveyed makes your skin look more healthy than a tan or fake tan!

You can't really ov…

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip: Avoid Weight Gain on the Road

Something I always look at with men who want to lose weight is backup planning for situations in which the good intentions fall down.

You might have the best diet in the world at home with the support of your partner and family. Your daily routine might be fantastically healthy including cycling to work, eating healthy snacks, 5 a day and drinking plenty of water, going to the gym on the way home and eating a healthy dinner.

However when men hit the road this lifestyle plan is sucked out of the window on take-off.

Why is travel so hard and how can we rein in this area of our lifestyle?

Many of us travel for work, some for leisure. How can we maintain a good lifestyle in this complex challenging and fluid arena?

There are so many threats to your usual lifestyle when on the road - your timetable will change, your timezone may alter, your sleep habits may be affected, you need to be productive and alert while travelling, boredom and stress kick in when on the road and guess what - we re…

Mediterranean diet for heart health -

Mediterranean diet for heart health -

Here is more info on a diet that might be right for you - have a read because it is so much more than just eating gallons of olive oil on your salad!

Happy Sunday!

Dr Ben Sinclair Sinclair
Health Limited
Twitter: @menshealthtips
Linked In:

Is your bread making you ill? How 2011's loaves are bad for you | Mail Online

Is your bread making you ill? How 2011's loaves are bad for you | Mail Online

Everyone tells you to give up carbs. Well we do eat alot of bread in the UK /Western diet - bread and potatoes and pasta are really our staples.

Bread has changed over the years and now contains many additives which may not be so good for you.

Have a read of the link article above to find out more.

My advice?

Don't eat too much bread or rely on it as your only source of carbs - eat potatoe, rice, pasta, coucous, oats etc so you vary your diet and in the right proportions shown in the healthy eating plate post below, matched only by the same volume of vegetables and fruit in your daily intake.

White bread is especially bad and you'd be surprised how much pure refined sugar actually goes into making it- try making it or look at a recipe.

Go for granary or wholemeal with seeds - it contains more fibre and is more nutritious; best of all bake your own at the weekend with a bread maker - it tastes…

#BEATTHEBELLY Daily Tip - What is a Balanced Diet?

You are a typical guy.

You eat mainly meat and carbs and sometimes a few veg on the side.

You eat cheese in a burger or sandwich and eggs in a fry up.

You grab the odd piece of fruit and think you can get 5 a day from drinking a whole carton of orange juice..

So you like the idea of this BEATTHEBELLY thing and you're on a fitness drive so you start looking into diets: there is a bewildering variety of options out there from the Acai berry supplement diet with bowel cleanser (a.k.a caffeine fuelled vitamin C boost bowel explosion diet) to the Atkins "just eat meat and cheese" and get a neck like a bull diet.

Diet is something we all have to intake every day of our life, so essentially we are all on a diet all the time, but sometimes we tighten up and focus on certain foods.

How do you make sure you're getting a balanced diet?
Lets focus on a typical Western or developed world diet.

You need

Protein to build muscles - from meat, fish, eggs, cheese and some beans