Calorie-burning in Paris
Calorie counting in Paris
Fitness vocabulary, French/English
Great fitness links

Massage therapy
Mediterranean diet recipes


What is a detox diet?
Mind, Body & Spirit Fitness magazine

By Jocylyn Voo: So-called detox diets, like the Master Cleanse, are seen as a quick way to lose weight, especially among celebrities like Oprah and Gwyneth Paltrow. But what is a detox diet? Is it a healthy way to cleanse your body, or a dangerous way to lose weight?
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Working out at the "Brain Gym"
Wall Street Journal online

By Kelly Greene, San Franciso: Linda Hale Bucklin, a 63-year-old writer, signed up on the spot when she saw a new "gym for the brain" in her neighborhood here. She now works out three times a week and credits a computer "visual processing" program for helping her find her car keys faster and sharpen her tennis skills.
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Work stress "changes your body"
A stressful job has a direct biological impact on the body, raising the risk of heart disease, research has indicated.

The study reported in the European Heart Journal focused on more than 10,000 British civil servants. Those under 50 who said their work was stressful were nearly 70% more likely to develop heart disease than the stress-free. The stressed had less time to exercise and eat well - but they also showed signs of important biochemical changes.
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Simple therapy "best for backs"
Researchers cast doubt on spinal manipulation and anti-inflammatory drugs as back pain therapies.

Paracetamol and keeping active are the best cures for back pain, according to Australian researchers who warn that other treatments do not work. A Lancet study of 240 back pain sufferers found anti-inflammatory drugs and spinal manipulation did not make any difference to recovery time. Yet currently, both treatments are recommended in several guidelines. Experts said patients needed to be reassured that avoiding bed rest and taking paracetamol would work. Read more

Busting Some Fitness Myths
By Amy Bertrand
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
16 February 2007

Most fitness professionals have seen or heard it all. Miracle diets, perfect workouts, promises of flat abs in two minutes a day. Chris Hoover, fitness supervisor at the Jewish Community Center in St. Louis, says he constantly sees people acting on that misinformation.

"I don't know what it is," he says. "They see a big muscle guy come in with his muscle magazine, and he sounds like he knows what he's talking about, so before you know it ... word of mouth, it's on someone's Web site, and suddenly everyone has this (wrong) information." For whatever reason, it seems there is a lot of misinformation out there about what it takes to get in a good workout. So with the help of Hoover and Koerber, we've devised a list of the top 10 fitness myths.
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Safety of Nano-Cosmetics Questioned
NPR - Morning Edition
March 13, 2006

Buckyballs look like little soccer balls made of carbon atoms, and are only a billionth-of-a-meter wide. Their discovery won a Nobel Prize and helped launch the field of nanotech. Now, a skin-cream maker says buckyballs can prevent premature aging of the skin by acting as an anti-oxidant.

But some experts wonder about the safety of highly engineered nanostructures like these. That's because when particles get small, they tend to develop new chemical properties. That might mean unexpected risks. There hasn't been much research into the safety of novel nano-particles, such as whether they can penetrate the skin. Traditionally, scientists believed that the skin is pretty impervious to particles.

But Tinkle's lab, along with some other labs, has found that at least some nano-particles can slip through the skin's tough outer layer. That means they could potentially interact with the immune system or get into the bloodstream.
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Study: Mid-life obesity a threat by itself
Wednesday, January 11, 2006

CHICAGO, Illinois (AP) -- Middle-age people who are overweight but have normal blood pressure and cholesterol levels are kidding themselves if they think their health is just fine. Northwestern University researchers tracked 17,643 patients for three decades and found that being overweight in mid-life substantially increased the risk of dying of heart disease later in life -- even in people who began the study with healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

High blood pressure and cholesterol are strong risk factors for heart disease. Both are common in people who are too fat, and often are thought to explain why overweight people are more prone to heart disease. But there is a growing body of science suggesting that excess weight alone is an independent risk factor for heart attacks, strokes and diabetes... Read more.

Weak Links in the Food Chain
Why Uncle Sam won't tell you what not to eat
Michele Simon, San Francisco Chronicle
Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Last week, the federal government released its Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2005. Updated once every five years based on the latest science, the 70-page document purports to tell us which foods are best to eat to stay healthy.

While touted as the strongest nutrition recommendations yet, what went unsaid speaks volumes about why Americans continue to be left in the dark when it comes to eating right. Most media reports focused on the guidelines' emphasis on weight loss, especially the recommendation to exercise daily.

But why is a document that's supposed to be about food talking about exercise? Yes, exercise is important to good health, but so are a number of other lifestyle factors, such as sufficient sleep and not smoking, yet those aren't mentioned. Emphasizing weight loss conveniently puts the onus for dietary change on the individual and avoids talk of reining in the food industry's multibillion- dollar marketing budget for unhealthy foods. "It's just common sense," explained outgoing Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson. "Eat less, exercise more," he cheerfully instructed Americans. ....Read more.

Eat Better - from Fitness and Freebies newsletter, December 2004
Before modern medicine, a sound diet was the best defense against disease. As more and more medications were developed in the 20th century, we lost our focus on nutrition. More recently, a significant amount of research has been redirected toward the important effects of the six primary classes of nutrients (vitamins, minerals, proteins, fats, carbohydrates and water) on the body. It is extraordinarily important to follow a good nutritional program. Among exercisers, particularly those trying to lose weight, it is common to take in too few calories. The combination of overworking and under-eating can place stress on your body and its immune system.

Tip: Most people require about ten calories per pound of body weight per day. If you go over that amount, you will probably gain weight. If you fall too far short, you set yourself up for immune-system problems. See Fitness and Freebies newsletter.

McDonald's announced they are eliminating SuperSize portions, read all about it here.

Dave Barry gives his humorous views on the Great American Carbohydrate Debate. Go to and choose "Confessions of a closet carb fiend".

Does the perfect high-fiber, high-protein snack exist?
From the Health Ezine, see
Only plant-based foods have fiber, so your protein will be from a plant source if you are looking for a single food to do the job. The lowly legume is probably your best choice, so something such as roasted soybeans would make a great high-protein, high-fiber snack. However, plenty of combination foods or combinations of foods could also fill your needs. For example, many sports bars on the market are high in both protein and fiber, for example, the Clif Bar. You can make your own fast, high-protein and high-fiber snacks too. Following are some ideas that fit the bill:
1. Hummus spread on whole-wheat crackers or a whole-grain bagel
2. A quick bowl of whole-grain cereal with milk and berries
3. Peanut butter on apple slices
4. Homemade bran muffins made with milk and eggs
5. A fruit smoothie made with plain yogurt and fruits
6. Celery dipped in low-fat cottage cheese
7. Yogurt sprinkled with granola

Men's bones suffer too
October 30, 2002
From HEALTH 24, Health Today

The gender gap is alive and well in the treatment of hip fractures, with men much less likely than women to receive treatment for osteoporosis after such a fracture.

"It's been known for the last couple of years that women were under-treated for osteoporosis. We suspected that it was the same or worse for men, and that's what we found," says Gary Kiebzak, lead author of an article that appears in the October 28 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.
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Calories burned for a person weighing:


130 lb

150 lb

Riding the bateau mouche on a nice day (1 hour)

60 cals

70 cals

Watching a 1.5 hour movie, especially in one of
those seats that sink when you sit down

90 cals

105 cals

Doing a fast stroll from the Place de Concorde to
the Notre Dame (say, in 30 minutes)

105 cals

150 cals

Spending 3 hours at a museum, breaks not included

270 cals

360 cals

Swimming laps for 30 minutes at the local pool

280 cals

325 cals

Running around the Champs de Mars for 30 minutes
(average speed, 7mph)

335 cals

385 cals

Playing singles tennis for an hour at Luxembourg Gardens

390 cals

450 cals

Dancing furiously at the Queen discotheque for 1 hour
(remember to adjust for alcohol consumed)

500 cals

600 cals

*Note: These figures are only approximations, since the amount of calories burned depends not only on duration and intensity of exercise, but also on muscle mass and other factors.

Calorie Counters
One croissant = 190 calories
Half a baguette = 125 calories
One pain au chocolat = 250 calories

Thick slice of paté (50 g) = 220 calories
A glass of red wine (20 cl) = 115 calories
A glass of cognac (10 cl) = 243 calories
1/4 of a Camembert cheese = 185 calories
A café noir (the tiny cup) = 5 calories
Bar of milk chocolate = 275 calories
Big Mac burger = 560 calories


  • Remember, muscle weighs more than fat;
    instead of watching the scales, check the tightness of your belt.
  • Judge your fitness level by how quickly you recover after exerting yourself, rather than just by the success of having made the effort.
  • Diets have been proven to be long-term ineffective for most people, and counter-productive for many. Don't start a new diet, start a new life-style with healthy habits.
  • Many people lose weight immediately after arriving in Paris, from walking, sightseeing or from climbing endless stairs. But they soon gain weight after discovering the pleasures of French cooking. Don't put off re-starting a personal fitness program, despite the challenge of finding something akin to what you were used to back home.

Sports and fitness vocabulary

Aérobic - aerobics
Athlétisme - competitive athletics (50 yd dash, etc)
Aviron - rowing
Bébés nageurs - swimming for babies

Cerf-volant - kites
Course: à pied - running (le "footing")
de fond - long-distance
de haies - hurdles
de vitesse - speed running

Cyclisme - competition cycling (Tour de France)
Cyclotourisme - cycling for pleasure (randonnées)
Danse acrobatique - competition dance
Escalade - rock climbing
Escrime - fencing

Expression corporelle - body movement
Fitness - general term for exercise class
Fléchettes - darts (in most Irish pubs)
Football - soccer
Football américain - American-style football

Gym tonic - calisthenics, sometimes with movement
Gymnastique - calisthenics
Gymnastique acrobatique - tumbling
Gymnastique aux agrès - gymnastics (bars, horse)
Gymnastique douce - calisthenics and stretch

Haltérophile - weight-lifting
Lutte - wrestling
Marche - walking
Musculation - muscle-toning, body-sculpting

Nage avec palmes - swimming with fins
Natation - swimming
(faire le longeur du bassin = lane swimming)
Natation détente loisir - leisure swimming
Natation synchronisée - synchronized swimming (water ballet)

Patinage de vitesse - speed skating
Patin à glace - ice skating
Patin à roulettes, or "roller" - roller skating
Patin à roulettes en ligne or "rollerblade" - in-line skating
Pétanque - boules
Plongée - diving

Randonnées sportives - hiking
Sauvetage - life-saving
Tennis de table - ping pong
Tir à l'arc - archery
Bateau à voile - sailing

For sports questions in French, call the Mairie de Paris, tel:



ACE Fit Facts
IDEA Fit Tips
Karen Voight's exercise tips and articles
Shape magazine
Fitness magazine has lots of information directed at expats. has lots of ads, find your fitness needs.