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5 Essential Fitness Tips For Busy Women

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While it can be a struggle to lose weight and stay healthy, it can be even more difficult to be fit when you’re busy at work all day. Fortunately, it can be done! Here we look at five fantastic Fitness Tips for all the busy ladies out there.

A lot of busy women, especially those that don’t have the time, fall into the trap of leading an unhealthy lifestyle or making minuscule fitness gains. Those who aspire to stay fit need to stay motivated, engage in regular exercise and control their diet. Once you’ve grabbed some dumbells and best single serve blenders on mykitchenadvisor.com, it’s time to tap into some well-needed fitness tips. Hopefully, by the end of this article, you will be able to concentrate on being more mindful of what you eat and doing some regular exercise. If you are a new-age woman who is highly caught up with their work, don’t worry, because there are certain things that you can do. Let’s find out more about these fast fitness tips!

Breakfast – the Most Important Meal of the Day

A healthy breakfast is a must. In order to kickstart your metabolism, you will need to ingest enough glucose and fibre. Doing so will also keep your energy levels up for the whole day. If you want our advice, choose food that is rich in calcium, vitamins, fibre and micronutrients. It is also important to eat protein-dense foods, helping reach satiety quickly and helping you feel psychologically ready to face the day ahead.

Cut Out the Junk

The cardinal sin of an unhealthy lifestyle is to gorge on oily and processed foods. You need to nip that in the bud as soon as possible, so remove these foods from your daily routine. It doesn’t even matter if you think you’ll burn the calories at a later date. Simply put, if the food contains junk then you shouldn’t be eating it at all!

Hydration

Often hydration is overlooked throughout the day. Did you know that the U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine recommend that you drink at least 15 cups of water a day? Fitness Tips 101 – ask yourself if you’ve honestly been able to do this on a daily basis. The unfortunate fact is that water deficiency can lead to fatigue, headaches and can even promote overeating. In order to avoid these symptoms and increase your general well-being, top-up on water, especially after you have exercised. One of those great fitness tips and tricks we hear about is to make a habit of it by carrying a water bottle around with you wherever you go. It will make you want to drink!

Cut Out the Coffee

A lot of fitness tips for women are often about reducing intake. We understand that when you’re busy and haven’t had enough sleep can be tempting to refill your coffee cup throughout the day, however, this is a bad idea. Sugar and caffeine are not healthy substances to consume on a regular basis. Moreover, they can make you feel fatigued and jittery, so you won’t want to work out. As an alternative, why not go for a brisk walk during your break? This will help you beat the afternoon slump.

Alternative Workouts

When you’re looking for fitness motivation tips, it’s important not to get bored. Feeling bored can even make you skip exercise altogether, and we all know too well that exercise is paramount to physical and mental well-being. The simple rule is when you really get bored with exercise then change it up once in a while. It is also easier to stick to your 30 minutes a day if you have others doing it with you. Involve your friends, work colleagues and people you love in lunchtime yoga sessions or brisk walks

But what about when you really don’t have the time to work out? Don’t worry, because you can easily stay motivated, even within your workplace. As an example, why not try standing up instead of sitting, or having a small weight to lift on your desk? Even lifting your legs up for a few seconds periodically throughout the day can increase muscle mass over time.

Fitness Tips Like Never Before

Who knew that you could be busy and stay fit at the same time? These health and fitness tips work wonders for those who haven’t got the time to run marathons or hike for six hours after work. Incorporate any of these five quick fitness tips into your daily routine and you’ll watch the benefits accrue in no time at all. Good luck!

What are some of your personal how to body fitness tips? We’d love to hear about them. Tell us more in the comments section below.

Scott Pine

Scott Pine

Scott Pine spent the vast majority of this life working in the fitness sector. He loves to write and then an active member of the online wellness community. Recently he has been working on a holiday fitness tips guide that he is looking to promote on his new blog. His favourite exercise of choice is skiing.

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Lower back pain workout

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Addressing the problem

Nine out of ten adults suffer back pain at some point in their life. So, there is a chance this lower back pain workout helps you, right now, or in the future. Lower back pain is the most common cause of chronic pain, a major contributor to missed work, and the most common cause of global disability. As Time magazine states in its article.
 
I hurt my back when I was 18 so, I´ve been dealing with lower back pain most of my life. My back pain and I have been friends for 24 years! I had plenty of time to read a lot about it, to try several therapies and remedies, such as:
  • analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs (prescribed by my doctor),
  • heat and ice packs,
  • spinal manipulation and mobilization (Chiropractors, osteopaths, and physiotherapists),
  • acupuncture,
  • yoga,
and in the process, I developed my own routine, which I´m sharing with you today, in case you want to give it a chance.
 
The lower back consists of five vertebrae (L1- L5). L5 is connected with the top of the sacrum. The lumbar vertebrae allow for forwarding and backward extension, as well as twisting movements. The segments L5-S1 and L4-L5, carry the most weight and have the most movement, this makes the area prone to injury. This is exactly what I hurt, L4-L5, and L5-S1. I´ll explain how I did it in a minute.
Back pain is classified in terms of the duration of symptoms.
 
1. Acute back pain: <6 weeks
2. Sub-acute back pain: 6-12 weeks.
3. Chronic back pain: >12 weeks.
 
Back pain can go from a muscle aching to a burning or stabbing sensation. Occasionally, the pain may radiate down your leg, worsen with bending, twisting, lifting, standing, or walking.  It can be challenging to maintain a standing position, sitting, or lying position. Carrying things in the arms, or bending can also be painful. Cleaning, sports, and other daily activities become challenging tasks for people with lower back pain.
5-10% of all low back pain patients will develop Chronic Lower Back Pain.
 
First of all, if your back hurts, you should visit your doctor, to rule out any serious pathology. Back pain is stressful, frustrating, disabling, and ultimately we worry about whether we have any serious illness or injury. This is usually not the case, but better to be safe than sorry, right?

When to get immediate medical advice

You should immediately contact your doctor if you have back pain and:
 
  • you feel numbness or tingling around your genitals or buttocks
  • difficulty peeing
  • loss of bladder or bowel control
  • unintentional weight loss
  • a deformity or swelling in your back
  • the pain does not improve after resting or is worse at night
  • your pain started after a serious accident, such as a car accident
  • you’re having problems sleeping because of it
  • when sneezing, coughing, or pooing your pain is worse
These problems could be a sign of something more serious (Mayo Clinic). You must check it urgently.

Causes and risk factors

Approximately 90% of people with back pain are diagnosed with non-specific acute back pain in which there is no serious underlying pathology.
 
The good news is the pain is not caused by anything serious, in most cases, pain is due to a sprain (overstretched or torn ligaments), a strain (tears in tendons or muscle), and/or a spasm (a sudden contraction of a muscle or group of muscles). The cause is a peripheral injury to muscle or ligaments.
To get an idea of which muscles you may have injured, please read erector spinae. Also, check how small the ligaments that join the vertebrae are. It’s unbelievable that such tiny things can cause so much pain.
So, what does cause this injury? It might be caused by any of these factors:
 

Overweight.

Excess body weight puts extra stress on your back. You should consider losing a few pounds to ease the load on your back. Besides, being overweight causes many other health problems, so you will be improving your general health while avoiding that uncomfortable back pain. Your back pain is a red flag, a painful way your body tells you to have to do something about your weight. The solution is well-known: a combination of a healthy diet and regular exercise.
 

Your job.

Does your job involve lifting, pulling, or anything that twists the spine? Then, it may cause your back pain. Obviously, you can´t quit your job but, back pain resulting from improper body mechanics may be prevented by avoiding certain movements, maintaining correct posture, and lifting objects properly.
The usual suspect is improper lifting, using your back instead of your legs can lead to back pain.

Sweep.

This is also a dangerous activity. Sweeping exercises every muscle, but you probably don´t pay attention to proper posture. Keep your back straight while sweeping your floor with a standard bristle broom. Focus your attention on moving the broom with your arms, don’t bend or twist your back. Collect your sweepings with a long-handled dustpan so you don’t have to bend over as much.
 

Sitting at a desk all day.

It comes with risks of its own, especially if your chair is uncomfortable, or you tend to slouch. If possible, choose a seat with good lower back support, armrests, and a swivel base. Placing a pillow or rolled towel in the small of your back can maintain its normal curve. Keep your knees and hips level. Change your position frequently, at least every half-hour. Also, check your posture when sitting, using computers or tablets, and watching television.

Standing for long periods.

If you must stand for long periods, be mindful, stand smart:
  • Stand up straight and tall
  • Keep your shoulders back
  • Pull your stomach in
  • Put your weight mostly on the balls of your feet
  • Keep your head level
  • Let your arms hang down naturally at your sides
  • Keep your feet about shoulder-width apart

Carrying weight incorrectly.

When you wear your purse, backpack, or briefcase over your shoulder, it is the lower back that supports the upper body and the additional weight you carry. If you carry that weight every day on the same shoulder, that can strain the lower back.

Lack of exercise.

Weak, unused muscles in your back and abdomen might lead to back pain. Weak back and abdominal muscles may not properly support the spine. You’re especially vulnerable if you tend to be inactive during the workweek and then spend hours at the gym or go out and exercise a lot on the weekend. You will be demanding too much of those weak muscles and, sooner or later, you will pay the price. Regular daily exercise increases strength and endurance and allows your muscles to function better.
 

Overdoing at the gym.

The other end is not advisable either. Overdoing it at the gym is another cause of lower back pain. This is how I got hurt. Back in the day, I just wanted to get bigger muscles. I had no idea of lifting weights, no lifting technique, no trainer to advise me, and the only motto was “lift heavy to get big”. Terrible and harmful motto. I learned that the hard way. Two slipped/herniated discs (the disc of cartilage in the spine presses on a nearby nerve) were the output of my teenage recklessness. 

Lower Back Pain Workout

My doctor told me not to lift or practice any sport because of my back pain. I became a weightlifter and I never had back problems again. By far, physical activity is the best therapy for chronic back pain. It’s even more effective than pain relievers treating pain in the long term. The great benefit of exercise is that it acts through multiple mechanisms, attacking the root problem: mobility, strength, circulation, and the nervous system. There is a lot of medical literature supporting specific physical therapy exercises for the treatment of low back pain. Some interesting readings:
Low back stability primarily depends on the abdominal and low back musculature. These muscles provide support on the spine. The stronger these muscles are, the less stress is on the discs and joints of the spine.
Core strengthening exercises to restore the coordination and control of the trunk muscles (abdominals, erector spinae, glutes) to improve control of the lumbar spine and pelvis. These exercises restore the strength and endurance of the trunk muscles.
 
But the surrounding muscles are also affected. Some are too tense or lack flexibility, others lack tone or strength. So, to relieve pain, we must pay attention to several muscles and restore a healthy balance among them.
Stretching and flexibility exercises to improve hamstring, quadriceps, piriformis, psoas, and hip joint capsule range of motion. These exercises reduce pain, improve movement, and improve functional limitations of movement.
 
So, here is the low back pain workout that I do regularly. You don’t need any equipment and it only takes you fifteen minutes.

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Introducing your new online gym

Today is a special day. I feel very happy, proud, and nervous at the same time because the project I have been working on for the last few months is finally going live: your new online gym!

It has been months of hard work, searching, selecting, negotiating, testing, and finding a way that all the pieces could fit together.

Let me tell you the story of this project. During the lockdown in Spain, I decided to offer live classes so that everyone could exercise from home. Not a big deal for me, but a lot of people found that online training was a real thing and that it really worked for them.

So I decided it was time to go a step further and not limit the offer to a single daily class, or a specific time, or a single type of training, objective …

And I started contacting coaches from different disciplines and different parts of the world. Finding the right ones was not an easy task and I thought my project would fail before it started. But I persisted in my search and finally, I found the first coach, then the second, and so on. We are currently six coaches, which is a modest number, but it is a good start.

You will find training programs, daily workouts, and on-demand classes: Yoga, pilates, functional training, dance fitness, and box & burn to get started. I am already working on adding more coaches to the project.

All this, and what is to come, for only € 14.95 / month. You can try us for 14 days for free, and cancel anytime. No questions asked.

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All you need to know about cortisol

Right now we live uncertain and stressful times due to COVID-19. We have been forced to change our routines. Our bodies have already paid the price… have you gained weight during quarantine? This new situation can cause discomfort and anxiety. Lately I have come across clients who had gained a lot of weight during quarantine. They blame lack of exercise and/or overeating, but in many cases there is another reason. I have had to explain to many clients how cortisol may be affecting their lives and their bodies. Today I will explain everything you need to know about cortisol, the stress hormone. I hope you find it useful.
 

Cortisol: what is it, function, normal values and alterations

 
Above the kidneys we have the adrenal glands, whose function is to release different hormones. The outer part of the gland, called the adrenal cortex, makes the hormones cortisol and aldosterone. The inner part of the gland, called the adrenal medulla, produces the hormones adrenaline and norepinephrine.
When you are facing a threat, your hypothalamus, a small region at the base of your brain, sets off an alarm system in your body. This system prompts the adrenal glands to release a surge of hormones. Adrenaline increases your heart rate, raises blood pressure, and increases energy supplies. Cortisol, the main stress hormone, increases sugars (glucose) in the bloodstream and improves glucose use in the brain. Cortisol also reduces functions that would be nonessential or harmful in a “fight or flight” situation (immune, digestive, reproductive, and growth processes). This complex natural alarm system also communicates with regions of the brain that control mood, motivation, and fear.
 
Back in the day, this survival mechanism served us to flee from some dangerous animal. Nowadays, we face stressful situations a little different: not being late for work, finishing projects on time, meetings, not missing the bus to meet friends … In all these situations, our body reacts by becoming alert, hoping to overcome adversity and threats. In the short term, the release of cortisol is very helpful and serves as a form of protection for your body. In combination with adrenaline, the two hormones perform many important tasks in your body. Iin stressful situations, they prepare you to be on top of your game. Cortisol works to improve your performance. Essentially, cortisol activates you in demanding situations. Once a perceived threat has passed, hormone levels return to normal. As adrenaline and cortisol levels drop, heart rate and blood pressure return to baseline levels, and other systems resume normal activities. So far so good.
The reference values for cortisol levels in the blood are:
  • Morning: 5 to 25 µg / dL;
  • End of the day: less than 10 mcg / dL.
  • At very high levels it can reach 80 μg / dl.
 
When stressors are always present and you constantly feel in danger, that fight or flight reaction stays on. Long-term activation of the stress response system and overexposure to cortisol and other stress hormones that act accordingly can disrupt almost every process in your body. This increases the risk of many health problems, such as:
 
  • Weight gain
  • Loss of muscle mass
  • Insomnia
  • Increase in blood sugar
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Increased thirst and urinary frequency
  • Memory lapsus
  • Difficulty in learning
  • Little growth
  • Decrease in testosterone
  • Decreased libido
  • Irregular menstruation
  • Increased probability of suffering from osteoporosis
Fortunately, it can reduce excess cortisol production. How does this work?

7 science-backed ways to lower cortisol

 
1.- Cut on sugar: One of the easiest ways to fight high cortisol levels, stress, and weight gain is to cut down on the simple sugars found in cakes, candy, soda, or white bread. Cortisol regulates the level of sugar in the blood. If you eat foods with a lot of sugar, your blood sugar level and consequently your cortisol levels will rise. Ironically, many people eat sugary foods to relax. However, sugar causes an increased release of cortisol. The combination of sugar with white flour, which is used in many cakes and sweets, raises cortisol levels even more. Choosing complex carbohydrates, rich in fiber, protein and healthy fats (whole grains, dairy, legumes or vegetables) will help you lower cortisol levels.
2.- Eat foods rich in phenylalanine and vitamin C: Phenylalanine is an amino acid that helps release dopamine. Dopamine will reduce the urge to eat carbohydrates and sugars and therefore wiil help reduce stress. Phenylalanine is found mostly in protein foods like dairy, eggs, red meat, fish, and some whole grains. Vitamin C, like dopamine, also helps to secrete dopamine and reduce stress. Vitamin C is found in vegetables and fruits.
 
3.- Cut or reduce caffeine intake: It is not just sugar, caffeine also greatly increases the production of cortisol. Coffee, energy drinks, and the like stimulate the adrenal glands, causing them to release more cortisol. Regular caffeine consumption can double the blood cortisol content. A good alternative is green tea. It only contains about a quarter of the caffeine, but at the same time the tea has a relaxing effect thanks to a special amino acid. A study from the Ben-Gurion University School of Health Sciences recently found that the amino acid L-theanine counteracts the production of cortisol and reduces its levels in the blood.
4.- Avoid or limit alcohol intake: A study published in The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism found that men who only had one drink a week saw a 3% increase in their cortisol levels, and those levels can be even higher if they are under tremendous pressure. Since it is a depressant of the nervous system, it can also cause depressive states.
 
5.- Adequate hydration: Drinking enough water a day – around eight glasses – is essential to better regulate cortisol levels. According to a 2018 study of young soccer players, even mild dehydration can lead to an increase in cortisol levels.
 
6.- Moderate-intensity exercise: We are not talking about training as long or as hard as possible. High intensity sport for about 15-20 minutes can stimulate cortisol production. The reason for this is again anchored in the human “fight or flight” response. For example, sprint can trigger a complex stress reaction. Your brain receives the message that you are fleeing danger and proceeds to release the stress hormones adrenaline and cortisol. However, if you want to lower your cortisol levels, you should do moderate-intensity exercise. A study published in The Journal of Endocrinological Investigation  has investigated the best ways to lower cortisol levels. The results indicated that relaxing sports, such as yoga or meditation, are the most appropriate. That said, other more active types of sports are definitely appropriate as well. 20 to 30 minutes of light physical activity – such as walking or biking – will reduce your stress and therefore consume excess cortisol.
In addition, including relaxation and meditation exercises in your routine will reduce the risk of experiencing chronic stress, a study from Ohio State University has concluded.
 

7.- Dark chocolate!!!

Believe it or not, dark chocolate keeps cortisol levels stable. A 2019 study published in the journal Antioxidants suggests that consuming just 25 grams of dark chocolate each day may lower overall cortisol levels.

Stressful events are part of life. And you may not be able to change your current situation. But you can take steps to manage how these events affect you. You can learn to identify what stresses you and how to take care of yourself physically and emotionally in stressful situations. The reward  is peace of mind and perhaps a longer, healthier life.

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3 fruits that build muscle

There are 3 fruits that build muscle. The enzymes in these fruits help your body to better absorb protein.

In general, digestive enzymes are responsible for breaking down fat, protein and carbohydrate molecules into smaller molecules, to obtain the nutrients we need.

Protein is an essential nutrient for the body, which helps us maintain healthy and strong muscles. Also to create new muscle tissue, improve tone and increase muscle volume.

Although we follow a diet rich in protein, our body does not always take advantage of them, so to optimize protein assimilation, we can help ourselves with certain foods.

The three fruits that we will see below, especially help to break down protein molecules.

Papaya.

Papaya contains an enzyme called papain. Papain transforms proteins into amino acids more quickly, helping us to take full advantage of them. Therefore, this enzyme will accelerate digestion and increase the use of these nutrients. Papain has been used for thousands of years as a meat tenderizer due to its ability to break down protein.

In addition, scientists from Vienna have proven that papain helps relieve constipation and gas caused by Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

Make sure you eat your raw, ripe papayas as exposure to heat can destroy these enzymes.

Pineapple

Pineapple contains bromelain, another enzyme that promotes protein assimilation. Eating pineapples may reduce the time it takes to recover from exercise.
This is largely due to the anti-inflammatory properties of bromelain.

Strenuous exercise can also damage muscle tissue and cause surrounding inflammation. Affected muscles cannot produce as much force and are sore for up to three days.
Bromelain has been demonstrated to reduce exercise-induced muscle damage and inflammation, enhancing recovery.

Kiwi

The kiwi contains high doses of actidine, which contributes to a better assimilation of proteins. This fruit is usually recommended to facilitate digestion because this fruit helps us reduce gas and relieves constipation by regulating gastrointestinal function.

Scientists found that actinidin, a unique compound in kiwis, helps the body break down proteins in red meat, diary and fish. “The observed enhancement of gastric protein digestion after eating kiwi fruit may increase the rate at which protein is absorbed in the small intestine, ultimately affecting the overall protein utilization in the human body,” lead author Dr. Lovedeep Kaur from Massey University in New Zealand

The general recommendation for fruit and vegetable intake is at least 400 grams per day, or five servings of 80 grams.
 
Maybe it’s time that you incorporate any of these 3 fruits that build muscle into your diet because if you help your body in assimilating the nutrients it needs, you will get an optimal benefit from your diet obtaining everything your body needs.

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