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Smart Nutrition for All

Nutrition is simply the fuel for your body’s metabolic and physiological requirements throughout your daily activities. Even though it sounds simple, it is not and unfortunately people seem to neglect the effects that proper nutrition can have on the quantity and quality of life you shall have. It is a Discipline and a Science and as all sciences must be treated with respect. Whether your goals range from general well-being to fighting a pathology or even improving athletic performance, nutrition will play its role.

Undoubtedly a vital factor to human survival is food. The only source of metabolic energy that humans can process is from nutrients and bio active compounds with direct health benefits, and these come from the food that we eat. And just when some people can probably get away from natural-born diseases or environmental toxins, they cannot get away from the food they ingest and its consequences. We basically are what we eat.

Benefits of Nutrition

As stated previously, even if your goal is targeted around body composition, although desirable, it is not the only benefit you will enjoy.

  • Improvement of bio-markers
  • Improvement in gene expression
  • Improved mental focus
  • Reduced risk of Metabolic Syndrome
  • Reduced risk of Cardiovascular Disease
  • Reduced risk of Cancer
  • Improvement in the quality of life for patients undergoing cancer treatments
  • Improvement of Neurological disorders
  • Improvement of Autoimmune disorders

The list is simply too large to be included in full, needless to say that ongoing studies will bring more benefits to the surface but we will just have to wait for the data to be released. However, we see that within the range set by genetics, a person’s choice of diet influences long-term health.

Why is it so Hard… ?

As with any good deed in life, adopting a ”SMART ” and beneficial feeding style is hard and will drive most people crazy. We are now living in huge modern cities where food is constantly been promoted and there is simply no escape. Whereas an alcoholic can most likely come off the addiction by simply quitting the booze and avoiding the bars, the obese individual has a harder path to follow… there is simply no escape from food… It is everywhere… and it is addictive… !

People decide what to eat, when to eat, how much to eat, and even whether to eat in highly personal ways based on a complex bundle of genetic, behavioral and social factors rather than on an awareness of nutrition’s importance to health.

  • Ethnic Heritage
  • Genetics
  • Personal preferences
  • Habits
  • Social interaction
  • Media
  • Convenience
  • Financial
  • Availability
  • Psychology
  • Religion
  • Lifestyle

SMART Nutrition

Any nutritional strategy you use to improve your health must be:

  • Specific: You are unique so the nutritional strategy you choose must be tailored for you and not the ripped dude you got it off from the gym. Specific data coming from you such as goals, age, weight, gender, medical history, activity levels, BMI. LBM. TEEE and previous nutritional habits are vital for creating a custom nutrition strategy.
  • Measurable: Any good strategy will require data in order to keep it in track, observe progress or even break plateaus. Calorie counting, calorie partitioning, weight measurements, body fat measurements and even bio markers will provide sufficient data to keep everything in check. Any protocol promising you results without the use of data, is a waste of time.
  • Affordable: There is no point in going on a diet that requires your whole salary to be spent on food and supplements. I know that proper nutrition is expensive but it can be tailored accordingly.
  • Realistic: Going on a low carb diet when you simply cannot live without carbs is not realistic neither is consuming 1.5gr/lb of protein if you are not training but decided to go on a high protein diet. Other variables such as meal timing and frequency will also need to be addressed according to your schedule
  • Tolerable: Diets that starve you to death at best are not tolerable let aside the metabolic damage they produce. The strategy you choose must include diet breaks, meal freedom once in a while and rewards. I hate the word cheat meal as it is of a negative nature and messes up with your psychology. A reward, is more self-fulfilling and boosts your ego!

So the next time you pick the latest diet frenzy or dogma at least make sure it fits the above requirements as we are all unique beings having specific lifestyles thereby making a ”one size fits all” kind of diet impossible to exist. By the way, do not use the term diet as it brings out negative feelings and makes the effort of sustaining a proper nutritional strategy horrific. My preferred use of words for me and my clients will be a ”nutritional strategy”. Now by simply changing from a diet to a strategy, you boost all sorts of positive feelings and suddenly you feel like a General kicking ass in war… That’s the exact kind of mental focus you will need!

Summing Up

I hope I did not bore you with stuff that you already know but realize that many people will need to be thoroughly educated in the areas of nutrition in order to take control of their lives. For all the science geeks out there waiting for data to be revealed, this was a general overview targeted towards the general public, but I will be analyzing several nutritional protocols with serious data in future articles, so be patient.

The benefits of a proper nutritional strategy are now more evident than ever, so choosing to adopt a S.M.A.R.T Nutritional Strategy is clearly the smart way to go.

Good luck with your nutritional journey.

Indexed Universal Life: Flexibility For All Phases of Life

In order for a financial vehicle to be worthy of all phases of a consumer’s lifetime, it must be liquid, it must have a proven track record (or rate of return) and it must have the flexibility to adapt to the consumer’s changing financial needs. Indexed universal life is a unique strategy that can provide all of these features and more. Let’s take a closer look at how IUL can be a fit for each phase of a consumer’s life: introduction, accumulation and preservation.

During the introduction phase, the consumer has usually completed their education/training and is eager to take on the world like a boxer lacing up his gloves for his first fight. This phase is usually the first step to the complete financial picture.

During this phase, the consumer has usually either started or is about to start both a career and family. Financial concerns are usually short term and the road map to retirement is in its rough draft. Concerns such as providing an education for the kids are usually the extent of long-term planning during the introduction phase.

Universal life can provide the perfect tool to accumulate funds tax deferred to help with a child’s education. IUL has the flexibility to contribute either as little or as much as the family can afford without financial consequences such as lapsing a policy.

This allows for the flexibility a young family may need in a struggling economy. In fact, IUL has become a preferred choice for college tuition plans, such as the 529 plan. Benefits include the ability to withdrawal the funds at any time without penalty and having no limitations on annual contributions (outside of MEC limitations). Mom and dad take comfort in knowing that if their child chooses an alternative option to college, they will not be penalized and will still have the capability to receive tax free withdrawals.

In the accumulation phase, the benefits of a universal life policy can continue to be advantageous. In this phase, the consumer is in the process of achieving long-term wealth and minimizing long-term liabilities. Consumers are using IUL as protection against the loss of a family’s income in the event of a breadwinner’s death.

Business owners can also benefit from cash value life insurance. They will often use this strategy to pay for business expenses that can be accessed in the form of a loan while avoiding federal income taxes. Additionally, many small businesses today are utilizing IUL as a way to protect themselves against the death of a business partner or key employee that would have a significant impact on the profitability of the business. Or the business owner can protect his family from a premature death, ensuring a financial remedy in the event of a catastrophe.

The ability to withdraw funds tax free and the luxury of protecting the breadwinner with an accelerated tax free death benefit is making the IUL more attractive than ever for families and financial professionals.

The final phase of one’s financial life is the preservation phase. During this phase, the consumer will be looking at exiting from the workforce and easing into retirement.

Most retirees entering this phase will have two major concerns today: rising income taxes and a bear market. Considering that most retirees will live on an income of approximately 70 percent of their average working income, their concerns are valid.

With our federal debt just recently exceeding $15 trillion, most feel that federal tax rates are likely to rise. When adding volatility to the equation, the retiree can easily find themselves in trouble, especially considering most retirement plans fluctuate in value with market performance and are usually taxable upon withdrawal. Because of this, retirees are turning to IUL as a means to bypass market volatility, enjoy moderate returns through both indexing and annual reset and have the ability to withdraw their funds exempt from federal income tax.

UIL can be a perfect fit for the three phases of one’s financial life: the introduction, accumulation and preservation phases. Regardless of which financial phase one is in, the IUL has the flexibility to adapt and conform to the changing needs of both the investor and financial professional.

Life Insurance Continuing Education Classes For All Insurance Agents

The Life Insurance continuing education classes offered online are streamlined and well devised to ensure that all insurance agents meet all the insurance CE requirements as set by the state to obtain or maintain their current licensing status. Life Insurance is the most profitable insurance product to many insurance companies and of course it is one of the most difficult products to sell owing to it long term care feature as well slightly high premiums that go into its policy. Definitely the insurance agents dealing with this product get better brokerage or commission in selling this product owing to its intricate complexities and high cost of premiums.

It is but imperative that insurance professionals dealing with this product have competent knowledge and skill in delivering persuasive and appealing sales pitch to sell Life insurance policies to people in the state. Life insurance continuing education classes are being conducted by majority of states either online or through classroom sessions to impart thorough knowledge on the rules, features, business plans, marketability and laws governing life insurance policies. This would definitely up skill the insurance professionals to answer any related queries by the general public without having to fumble for information.

It is mandatory that all licensed insurance agents, underwriters and brokers must complete a few courses in Insurance CE on an ongoing basis as the procedures, rules, principles, terms and conditions governing insurance policies tend to change periodically from location to location over a period of time. One has to be well aware of the necessary changes made and sell the insurance products as per the guidelines provided in the insurance continuing education classes. Nowadays insurance CE classes are provided online and as well as in classroom sessions. Alternatively you can also purchase insurance continuing education credits online if you prefer to work that way.

On an average every state offers around 25 life insurance continuing education courses in order to fulfill the Department of State requirements to handle insurance products. The training and courses are offered for all insurance trainees, professionals, and property and casualty dealers as well as beginners who wish to start their careers in Insurance sector. There are over dozens of insurance continuing education classes that deal with property and casualty, annuity, risk management, auto insurance, health and life insurances. The catalog mentioning the various insurance products also consist of flood and fire insurance policies which are extremely comprehensive and customized to meet the needs of customers in times of emergency.

As insurance industry is dynamic and customer’s expectations from the insurance products also keep changing from time, the rules and regulations governing the insurance continuing education courses are amended from time to time and the insurance advisor has to keep himself abreast with the changes to be able to convince the customers better and suggest a policy that suits their needs. This is exactly the reason why the government has made it mandatory for all insurance advisors to take training session for stipulated period of hours every year.