Category Archives: Uncategorized

Beat that Weight Loss Plateau!

???????????????????????????????????????

Hitting a roadblock in your diet can be exasperating. You do well in the first few months–and then your progress stops. And all efforts you put into it are not translating onto the scale and you ask “I was doing so well! What happened?”

This Plateau Stage is a normal occurrence for all people following a weight loss program or certain diet plans. At this stage, the body’s weight loss progress stalls even though the person claims to be working out habitually and eating healthily. So what really happened? Let’s actually take some time to demystify this stage in the weight loss process.

lose-weight1.) Physics

Based on laws of physics, a friend that is, say 200 pounds  will require more energy for him to move compared to you at 180 pounds. This translates to your friend using up more calories when you both run at the same speed. And so given that you are getting lighter as your diet process moves along, it will actually take less calories for you to move compared to when you started your diet at a heavier weight,. You would then need to take longer or more intense runs to achieve the same calorie expended, at the beginning of your workout when you still weigh more.

bmr

2.) Basal Metabolic Rate

The same principle applies to your Basal Metabolic Rate or BMR. BMR the rate at which our body uses calories to fuel our involuntary actions and while at rest, such as breathing, cell division, blood circulation, muscle contraction etc. In this case, a the person with more mass to move, the more calories is needed to help support these functions. As a person trims down, calories required for these also decreases.

3.) Water Weight

When a person from a sedentary lifestyle starts to improve his diet and workout, it will seem that weight loss will be rapid in the beginning. But sadly, at this stage, what you lose is not fat yet, it’s water. Since water is easier to get rid-off, it explains why people tend to lose weight fast at the start of their programs. Excess water in our body obviously reflects on the weighing scale, and the heavier our weight (excluding those who are heavy in muscle mass), the more water we will lose.

Now that this is cleared up. Let’s learn what’s the best way to lose weight at this stage and keep improving!

plateau

1.) Keep watching your food intake

Further into your diet, it’s a tendency to be complacent about your food intake.   After losing some weight, some already disregarded the importance of keeping track of their intake on their food diary. Upon reaching the plateau, composition of meals may no longer be strictly observed and therefore limiting the changes in the body. That’s why diet coaches insist that monitoring tasks must be done and checked, constantly. Apps and services such as those of HAPIcoach.com can provide a good tool to help monitor your food intake and have a personal nutritionist take a look at your meals while your at it. 

Another is for you to have an increased amounts of protein in your meals. According to a study done by Smart Foods Centre-School of Health Sciences, and CSIRO Human Nutrition, protein consumed in proper amount can increase your metabolism by about 30%, for 12 hours. But of course, protein intake must not go over to your total energy requirement in day, and must still be within desirable range of your total macronutrient intake.

workout

2.) Reevaluate your workout.

Do you feel that your workout has become leisurely? Afternoon runs feel like  a blissful afternoon stroll in the park? Rule of thumb: if it’s too easy, you’re probably not doing enough. When you reach this stage, increase the intensity or try a new routine. Also, try to include  strengthening routines to your workout to increase your muscle mass. More muscle mass translates to increased metabolism, and faster weight loss.

sleep

3.) Rest. Sleep.

The importance of having enough rest and sleep is for you to give room to your body to do necessary muscle repairs. Workout is for stretching the muscles, protein is for filling the gaps from the stretch, and resting is for healing. Overtraining and ignoring rest days is counterproductive as it leads to muscle wasting instead. The weaker our muscles, the lesser the muscle mass. The lesser the muscle mass, the slower the metabolism. Keeping this in mind will help you get some shuteye and give your body a rest.

There you have it! To overcome the plateau stage, your body just basically needs some adjustments and your focus just needs to be realigned.  So keep at it and you’ll achieve your workout and weightloss goals. We’re excited, for you, too!

The HAPILABS Team

Can’t lose weight? Studies show food tracking may just be the answer.

Keep-Food-Journal

If you’re new to food tracking or perhaps have heard the concept but not sure if it actually  works for weight loss, consider the body of research that attest to its success. A review of 22 studies by the American Dietetic Association revealed significant positive relationship between self-monitoring and successfully losing weight. Here are some more reasons tracking what you eat bodes well for shedding the pounds and keeping them off.

Keeps ‘healthy eating’ top of mind.

Very often we eat mindlessly, without thinking about what we put into our mouths. Who actually counts calories when we stop for that glazed donut? The act of documenting our meals keeps us aware that we are actually making important dietary choices, even when just merely grabbing an afternoon or midnight snack.

It sets you up for success

Food tracking works better if you actually make changes in your diet.  It makes it easier for you to create those changes, too. Sure, you know now to reach for whole grain cereal instead of your usual storebrand favorite. But on top of that, when you actually see what goes into your daily meals, there is a bigger impact, as you’ll know where to make helpful improvements.

Helps you understand how you eat

Monitoring not just the food you eat but also things like your mood while eating can even teach you about your attitude towards food. Do you eat only when you’re actually hungry, or do you just have frequent cravings? Or does that weekly intense performance meeting at work get you  running for the snack bar quicker than any hunger pang? Then you’d know: if you can’t get away with stress eating, you can just prepare a more substantial snack for that day.

Technology makes it easy

The  American Dietetic Association study also concludes that technology advancements like apps for food logging helps people better in adhering to this practice, simply by making the process easier. Applications, such as HAPIcoach that lets you upload photos of your meals, makes the job much detailed, quicker and easier. And on top of that, it also makes information available for actual nutritionist, so you know what you’re actually doing when grabbing a bite.

So before you press the dismiss button on yet another diet reminder, you may want to try this simple and straightforward approach. 🙂

The HAPILABS Team

Low Fat Diet Leads to More Fat loss Than Low Carb Ones, Recent Study Finds

low carb vs low fatA recent study published in Cell Metabolic Journal,  led by Kevin D. Hall at the National Institute of Diabetes and Kidney Disease, suggests that a fat restricted diet leads to more weight loss than a calorie restricted diet.

The study involved observing 19 adults with obesity voluntarily confined in a metabolic ward for a period of two weeks,  with one group consuming a carbohydrate restricted diet and the other consuming fat restricted diet, both with daily exercise. The study finds that though both low fat and low carbohydrates lead to fat loss, fat loss is significantly higher in those who consumed low fat diets.

The study demonstrated in the short term that in the calorie restriction of fat vs. carbohydrates, low fat diets leads to more fat loss. This study showed opposite the conclusion of former studies and claims of the metabolic advantage of carbohydrate restriction. (Ludwig and Friedman, 2014).

Though long term and real-life application of the premise of this study would have to consider more complex factors such as behavioral, and the actual attainability of high fat restriction in daily real-life settings, it provides one important takeaway. As Prof Nick Finer, Honorary Professor in the UCL Institute of Cardiovascular Science mentioned to Science Media Center, one important thing about this study is that it disproves that a low-carb diet is absolutely required if one wants to lose fat, and that only a low-carb diet can lead  to fat loss.

But in the end, this study does not change what all long term dieters are probably already too familiar with, that weight loss success relies less on what the meals of a diet plan or a regimen is composed of, and more on if one can actually stick to to the plan in the long term.

What do you think this study would mean for your weight loss? In essence, if you can maintain a low-fat diet and successfully keep it a habit, that would be the best approach if you’d want to put the elements of this study to actual practice.

The HAPI Team

References:

Hall, Kevin D. “Calorie for Calorie, Dietary Fat Restriction Results in More Body Fat Loss than Carbohydrate Restriction in People with Obesity.”Cell Metabolism 12 Aug 2015. <http://www.cell.com/cell-metabolism/abstract/S1550-4131(15)00350-2>


Jebb, Susan. “Expert Reaction to Study compairing low-fat and low-carb diets and body fat loss” 13 Aug 2015. <http://www.sciencemediacentre.org/>

How to Help Make the World a HAPIer place!

What ways can you save the Earth in your own little way?

We are supporters of things that make this world a HAPIer place.  And what else makes the world HAPIer more than people adapting ways to help sustain it? With the Earth Day and Arbor day in April just past, we right now have the health of the environment in mind more than any other time in the year.  But why not get this going every single day? By starting small, we can surely make Earth-friendly habits stick and create impact in a much bigger way.

Here are little things you can do to help out:

1. Walk. And walk some more.step

Cars are top contributors of greenhouse gas emissions. Greenhouse gas traps heat in our atmosphere, consequently threatening the global climate.  By leaving your car at home and choosing to walk instead of driving, you’re helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions you yourself contribute to the 30 billion metric tons of CO2 human activity emits yearly [Scientific American].

And as research suggests, around 10,000 steps per day is essential to keep you fit. An average person walks around 5,000 to 7,000 steps per day [Sports Medicine] ; this is only by keeping to our usual routine. But by walking or taking your bicycle instead of your car to places nearby, you are bound to double the number on your activity tracker without having to make a conscious effort.

Also the steady rhythm of walking tends to beat the stress levels of being stuck in a traffic jam. Less stress, good for the environment; great for your health!

2. If you must travel far, consider public transportation or carpooling.

This is simply because more people sharing the same transportation reduces the cars that travel the road minimizing adverse environmental impact of fossil fuel driven transportation.

3. Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Plan it and really do it.

recycleWhy is this important? An average person produces 4.5 pounds of solid waste a day [EPA].

Aside from the energy and the resources that are used to transport all that fulfill our daily consumption, the same goes for taking care of the things that we throw out. In addition, landfills produce considerable methane gas that contributes further to global warming.

Taking measures as having a recycling bin in your house, as well as composting, will do a lot to reduce your own household wastes. In addition, simple tricks as taking your own reusable grocery bag instead of opting for paper bags, asking to not include plastic cutlery from fast food delivery when dining at home (or wherever your own cutlery is available), would reduce the clutter and save you things you’ll just use once and then throw away.

4. Plant trees.

Just a funny thought: If WiFi signals came out of trees, surely we’d be planting more trees, right? Why not then  have the same attitude for things as essential as the air we breathe?

planting

Among the other benefits of trees to our existence, two mature trees can produce enough oxygen for a family of four in its lifetime [SAT]. You can make the choice to plant a tree in our own backyard or browse local town or city events for some tree planting activities you can participate in to create a bigger impact. It’s just half a day of your time and it would be perennially worth it.

5.  Do resource saving tips around the house.

Great day for laundryLeaky faucet? One constant drip in your sink can waste 75 liters of water a week. Keeping your faucets in tip-top shape can make keep you from this unnecessary wastage. You can also install a clothesline outdoors to help you save up on energy used for laundry at home during hot summer months. You can also program your television, computer and other household appliances to automatically turn off when not in use. Also, unplugging appliances, instead of simply turning them off  further minimize the energy consumed in your household and decrease the money you spend regularly on electricity.

We strive to improve to take care of our own health and HAPIness. We can find little but surefire ways to take care of both our own health and the environment. In doing so, we don’t only get to do something good for ourselves but also for every other person in the planet. Now that’s HAPI!

Sources:

Tudor-Locke, Catrine, Bassett, David R Jr. “How Many Steps/Day Are Enough?: Preliminary Pedometer Indices for Public HealthSports Medicine. 34(1):1-8, 2004.

Bielo, David. “How much is Too Much: Estimating Greenhouse Gas Emissions”, Scientific American, 29 April 2009. Web. 7 May 2009. http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/limits-on-greenhouse-gas-emissions/

Environmental Protection Agency. Municipal Solid waste. Web. 07 May 2014. http://www.epa.gov/waste/nonhaz/municipal/

Save a Tree. Tree Facts | Facts About Trees. Web. 08 May 2014. http://www.savatree.com/tree-facts.html

Mobile Browsing and Moves Data Now on HAPI.com!

We’ve got 2 GREAT new updates to HAPI.com!

First is the mobile browsing version of your HAPI.com account, which you can access at m.hapi.com. It’s compatible with ALL smartphones and tablets! It features an improved image upload experience, so you can enrich your HAPI Meals and HAPI Moments on the go!

We love the snappy response you get when uploading and viewing your timeline on m.hapi.com. Our experience here will also lead to improvements to the HAPI.com mobile app for iOS and Android this Q2.

mobile site

Next, we’ve added support for the Moves smartphone app. You can now see your Moves data on HAPI.com!

Moves app available for Android and iPhone probably is probably the coolest fitness app to hit smartphones to date.

If you haven’t been acquainted yet with the Moves app, here’s what you need to know: Moves is an app that tracks your fitness data turning your smartphone virtually into an activity tracker. It automatically records and recognizes your activities (walking, traveling by car, etc.) by simply putting your phone in your pocket or your bag. Ain’t that neat?

Photo Credit:moves-app.com

moves-flat

To activate, simply log on to HAPI.com and navigate to your My Devices and Apps page and click “Activate now”.

moves

Once set, your data will be available on the HAPI.com and displayed on your timeline.

moves timeline

And once set as your default device, you can also view your steps, distance travelled and calories burned on your My Stats page. my stats

Stay tuned as we add more features to make the entire HAPI.com experience better for you!

Have a HAPI day!

The HAPILABS Team

Get your HAPIfork at Joyus Today!

We’re thrilled to announce that HAPIfork is now available at Joyus.com!

Joyus.com, an online video shopping site that helps people live more beautifully, now offers the HAPIfork as part of their Health and Fitness catalogue. And what a perfect channel for HAPIfork being a product that help you stay fit healthy and HAPI.  HAPIness, we believe, is important to living beautifully.

HAPIfork at Joyus.com is priced at US$100 and is available in a very pristine white color.

Joyus members are to receive free standard US ground shipping. Joyus ships to all 50 US states.

Watch this nice Healthy Habits segment by Leandra Rouse to learn more about what HAPIfork can do for you.

[youtube httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-o-FyQLR8QQ]

Have a HAPI day!

The HAPILABS Team

 

Happy Lunar New Year from HAPI.com!

Happy Lunar New Year!

lunar new year

New Year’s resolutions overwhelmingly tend to be some sort of vow to become healthier. Losing weight is perennially a top contender closely followed by the pledge to get fit and to eat more healthily. HAPIfork to the rescue!

You all know by now that HAPIfork aims to help people eat more slowly with its vibration and light alarms. But in truth, HAPIfork is more powerful than that.

Have you unlocked your HAPIfork’s full potential? Make it your mission to be healthier and HAPIer this 2014 by taking advantage of your HAPIfork.

Here are two more amazing things you can do with your HAPIfork:

app

 1. Use the HAPI.com  mobile app

Enhance your HAPI.com entries by taking and uploading pictures on your mobile phone. Download for iOS or Android.

coaching

2.Get your free 15-day meal plan

Your HAPIfork comes with a free 15-day meal plan and coaching program to help you eat more slowly and for better health. Click here to get started.

As we always say at HAPILABS, 50% of our health comes from what we eat and how we eat, and your HAPIfork is a positive step in that direction. It’s still not too late to make this new year a HAPIer and healthier one for you. Start today!

The HAPILABS Team

Take it Slow This Holiday Season!

Thanksgiving is only a few days away, and the much awaited holiday season is upon us once again! It’s the perfect time to spend with friends and family, or catch up on some much needed relaxation and time alone. Considering how busy and fast paced our lives are, it’s important to cherish the few times we get to sit back and take it slow!

Though “healthy” and “holidays” are two words that do not typically sound harmonious when said together, the holidays are also a perfect time for us to nourish and be kind to our bodies. Would you admit to having all the time in the world to pick out the most healthy meals when you are rushing through your busy schedule?

If you have not been taking care of your nourishment and health for the rest of the year, you would think that the holidays are never the right time to start being healthy. Why deprive yourself of the joy of eating by being healthy during the holidays, right? Not exactly. Being healthy and having joyful appetizing meals are no longer mutually exclusive.

As you know, we at HAPILABS believe that 50% of health comes from what you eat and how you eat. How you eat is definitely as important. And what way is that? Eating slowly.

Eating slowly is a way for you to factor in your health in this year’s festivities. An increasing number of studies attest to the benefits of eating slowly: studies that show one’s eating rate to be associated with obesity, cardiovascular risk factors, diabetes, weight loss and the seen benefits when eating rate is slowed down.  A comprehensive list of scientific studies, compiled by Slow Control, the HAPIfork’s manufacturer,  is available here : http://slowcontrol.com/images/filedownloads/slow-control-bibliography.pdf

On top of those, the right way of eating may even highlight how you enjoy the important moments this holiday season.The highlights of a feast is to enjoy the food and the company. Taking it slow at the dinner table is just what you would need to have opportunity for fond memories, as well as opportunity to take care of your tummies.

It takes 20 minutes for your mind to register that you’re full. Eating slowly gives you a handle on your food intake. Plus, chewing your food well makes you enjoy meals more. Savor the flavor and texture of each decadent dish.

Great food is one of the best things in our favorite holidays and so slowing down your eating gives it the attention it deserves.  It’s not a requirement to gorge oneself with everything at the dinner table; you can enjoy that pumpkin pie, turkey and the delicious yams and without feeling like you have to win a race. Eat slowly, enjoy the food that prepared by you or your host ever so thoughtfully.  And when you eat slowly, it also gives time for you to chat and catch up with your family and friends, be mindful, and enjoy the present moment. When you take things slow, you are mindful of little details that will make your holidays even more memorable.

Like us, are you excited for the holidays? Take the time to enjoy this Thanksgiving. Take it slow. It’s your HAPI Moment. 🙂

thanksgiving

Here Comes The HAPIfork Mobile App!

Hello HAPIbackers,

We hope you have already filled out our HAPIfork survey! This would provide us information for shipping your rewards to you so if you haven’t done so yet, just check your inbox for an email from Kickstarter and access the survey link.

To date, 84% of backers have already completed the survey. And for those who will receive the HAPIfork as a reward, 50% have chosen the color blue, 38% have chosen green, and 12% have chosen pink! Let us know your color preference by completing our survey 🙂

Now for our next update, we’d like to unveil what’s happening on the mobile app front.

The HAPIfork, powered by Slow Control, needs just the right app so it can fully help you take control of your health. The HAPIfork application was designed to provide you with very useful functionalities. You can use it to sync with your HAPIfork, add pictures and comments, and have direct access to your meal data and more. No bells and whistles. Just what you need to access your HAPIfork data after the meal or even… in real-time when you’re eating!

Here are 3 screen caps we want to share with you:
Last Meal
  • See your success rate- how many bites were done at the proper pace vs. failed bites when you eat too fast
  • Be provided with data such as your average fork servings, average interval between fork servings, and number of fork servings per minute
  • View the images you saved with your meal (you’ll be able to save multiple images)
  • See the overall graph of your meal, showing number of fork servings over time

image-277277-full

Meal Details

  • Description of the meal to describe the experience, or even to leave yourself motivational messages!
  • Rating of the meal : rate your overall satisfaction from the meal.
  • Location, meal start and end times, and even get to tag your meal to categorize them.
 image-277278-full
Meal History
  • Summary view of your your meal history with the pictures that you added.

image-277279-full

Take note, though, that the following screen caps are from the beta version which is currently under development so you may see some difference when the first version goes live 🙂 Planned support for the HAPIfork app is on Android and iOS.
Thank you and have a HAPI day!
The HAPILABS Team
This update was originally posted on Kickstarter on June 19, 2013.