Saturday, 31 December 2011

What A Joke

Karzai welcomes US ‘Taliban not our enemy’ remarks

KABUL: Afghan President Hamid Karzai Saturday welcomed US Vice President Joe Biden’s remarks that the Taliban “per se is not our enemy”.

Biden’s comments to Newsweek magazine last week caused uproar in the US, which has been fighting a 10-year war against the Taliban-led insurgency, but reflected an increasing focus on finding a political settlement.

“We are very happy that America has announced that Taliban are not their enemy. This will bring peace and stability to the people of Afghanistan,”Karzai said during a ceremony in Kabul.

Karzai has agreed that if the United States wants to set up a Taliban address in Qatar to enable peace talks he will not stand in the way, as long as Afghanistan is involved in the process.

The September assassination of Karzai’s peace envoy, former president Burhanuddin Rabbani, appeared to have derailed any prospects of progress in talks.

But recent unconfirmed reports suggest the US could be open to a deal which includes the transfer of Taliban prisoners from Guantanamo Bay.

In the interview with Newsweek Biden emphasised the need for the Taliban to cut ties with al-Qaeda.

“We are in a position where if Afghanistan ceased and desisted from being a haven for people who do damage and have as a target the United States of America and their allies, that’s good enough,” he said.

As it pushes for a political settlement, the Afghan government has changed its tone towards the insurgents, referring to “terrorist” rather than “Taliban” attacks.

But many Afghans fear if the Taliban is allowed into mainstream politics, their influence will see the undermining of human rights and freedoms.

Friday, 16 December 2011

A Guide to Permanent Weight Loss

One of the more frustrating aspects of weight loss diets is the great chance of weight return and perhaps a few more pounds on top after stopping the diet program. 

Most people think a diet that can work for their body type has to be as complicated to figure out as rocket science. It truly is not that difficult, but with the many choices and types of diets out there, it's no wonder that most people fail to get the results they are looking for.

When you look at the different weight loss diets, there are many programs and combinations of programs to choose from. The three main nutrients, proteins, fats and carbohydrates can be broken down to different ratios for total daily calorie intake. For example, you can have high, medium, low and zero calorie amounts of fats, proteins or carbohydrates. The calorie ratios of each nutrient set against the others are numerous. This is where a diet “guru” can come up with his or her own program, advertise it as the best and further confuse the general public with yet another choice. 

It doesn't have to be this way if we look at the real key to this diet program conundrum. There are some general guidelines to follow when you are shopping for a weight loss diet that will allow you to decide if a particular one is right for you. These guidelines can be found in virtually every diet manual. 

The aim here isn't an explanation of what diet you should actually follow, but to give you a logical approach as to how to succeed with whatever program you decide to do. Apply some common sense to a nutritional plan and you will make your weight loss permanent and lifelong. 

If we can understand why diets fail in the long term, then we can try to prevent it from failing over and over again. Basically, weight loss goals for most people don't succeed because of the lack of long-term commitment. Most people already know that they need to expend more calories than they are taking in. No real rocket science here. Unfortunately most are not willing to do what it takes to achieve this calories deficient ratio for longer than a few months or less. 

Generally all diets work. It can be high fat, low fat, high carbohydrates and the many combinations of fad diets we see so often. In the short term, by burning more calories than you consume there will be some weight loss, but we need to find the real key that will give us permanent weight loss. 

Recent studies have shown that when the popular commercial diets were compared to each other over a 6-month to one-year span of time, they generally had the same weight loss results. The conclusion of one major study sited that the adherence level rather than the diet itself was the primary predictor of whether the weight loss program would work.

The bottom line is that even though some diets are healthier than others, or suppress the appetite better, virtually all diets work the same in the short term. What is clear is adhering to the diet becomes the most important thing when looking at weight loss for the long term. 

Lifestyle alteration is the basis here and any thoughts of having permanent weight loss need to be addressed as life long management in order to succeed. 

Although most people are looking for the magic bullet to end their weight loss woes, there hasn’t been any real advancement in trying to lose weight without drugs or surgery. People for hundreds of years have known about cutting calories as the method for getting leaner. So the guide to permanent weight loss is to reduce your calories and do your diet program for the long term. That is the real secret. Save your money looking for the next best thing and do what has been proven to work for every one throughout the ages.

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Get Energy and a Healthier Body

When the cooler weather arrives, our first instinct is to cuddle under a blanket with a warm snack. Our slim summer bodies hide under the clothes so we almost don't see those pounds as they start piling on. This fall, take five easy step to better fitness so you're not scrambling to lose weight next spring.

Feast On Fall Harvest Fruits and Vegetables

Fresh fruits and vegetables last way beyond the hot summer months. Fill up on yummy fall fruits and vegetables including cranberries, apples, pears, pomegranates, pumpkins and tangerines. Feast on flavorful fall vegetables including eggplant, cauliflower, snow peas, sweet potatoes and winter squash. Step up your fitness routine even more by going to harvest your own fresh fruits and veggies. You'll get plenty of fresh air and exercise while you hand-pick the finest selections fresh from the fields.

Roast Instead Of Raw

During the summer months, many people get accustomed to eating refreshingly raw fruits and vegetables. A major benefit of eating raw rather than cooked veggies is the nutrients aren't boiled away. As the weather gets cooler, our bodies automatically crave warmer foods. Why not roast your vegetables instead of consuming them raw? Roasting retains all the vitamins and provides the hot food your body wants. Just drizzle olive oil and a dash of pepper and salt over your vegetables and roast in a 350 degree oven until lightly browned.

Get Moving In The Cool Air

During the summer months, our bodies get stagnant in the heat. We exercise but excessive exhaustion and perspiration take over. Test your true endurance in the cooler fall days. Fall is a great time to build endurance because you aren't struggling against oppressive heat. Whether you're raking leaves, bicycling, hiking or jogging, get up and get moving in the cool fall air.

Stay Away From Comfort Foods

As the fall weather sets in, everyone is already talking about holidays. Feast foods appear at home, in office break rooms and at friends' homes. Learn which comfort foods to avoid so you won't pack on the pounds before the winter even arrives. Avoid sweets, goodies and tempting treats with hundreds of sugary or salty calories your body doesn't need. Arrive to parties armed with a personal artillery of healthy alternatives. Carry a nutritious snack in your handbag or briefcase to avoid office snacking. Bring low calories choices to snack on when you go visiting. When you are well-prepared, it's easier to avoid comfort foods and snacking pitfalls.

Get Ready To Get Back To Business

During the summer, many people enjoy a more relaxed pace. Students, teachers and people taking time off for scheduled summer vacations often fall into a pattern of laziness and snacking. If you were away from work for the summer, create a new routine as work starts again. Office employees can stretch during breaks or take a short local walk. Even fitting in a few minutes of movement during the day does wonders for your circulation. Fit fitness into your daily routine for increased energy and a healthier body.