Fiber…what is it? Not the most exciting word you’ve ever heard that's for sure, but its benefits will have your body celebrating from the inside out (literally). What’s so great about this little nutrient? Let's find out! All aboard the fiber train.
While cruising through your MyFitnessPal app, there’s a handy stat in there you may not be paying enough attention to: fiber intake.
Most of our fiber should come from a variety of grains, legumes, vegetables, fruits, and nuts. However, living in the age of processed foods and “functional dietary fiber” there are products like Splenda and Apple Jacks that claim to be fortified with fiber, making them “healthy”.
Dairy, oils, refined sugars, and alcohol make up 48% of the American diet and contain no fiber-yikes. The Institute of Medicine recommends a daily intake of 19-38 grams a day, while most of us get under 20.
Being low on fiber can cause several health issues, but let’s talk about the benefits. Fiber helps bind and eliminate blood cholesterol/fat, keeps the GI tract clean, eases constipation, controls blood sugar, insulin, and body fat, and contributes to satiety (that damn I’m full feeling).
If we haven’t said it enough, eat more vegetables. Eat vegetables, fruits, grains. Eat a variety of them, eat them raw, eat them cooked, eat ones that leave little fibrous things in your teeth and the ones that don’t. Your gut will thank you!
Friendly reminder that fitness isn't limited to the gym! Get aquatic & take your workouts to the pool, Flipper! Not only is swimming a great recovery workout, you’ll stock up on vitamin D while you’re doing it. Check out our go-to water based workout.
Truth time - we’re horrible swimmers. We went to swim lessons for years and just never really got it.
HOWEVER, you do not have to be an Olympic swimmer to see the benefits of a few laps in the pool. Swimming is an automatic resistance workout - since water is almost 800 times denser than air - and doesn’t put stress on your joints. It also makes for a great way to soak up some vitamin D!
@wbanks85 has been hitting our local public pool to get some laps in for active recovery. Try this little workout he put together:
10 medicine ball slams
10 push ups
Scale down the rounds and/or reps if you’re just starting out, and add to it each week to keep challenging yourself. We can’t guarantee you’ll be able to race Michael Phelps anytime soon, but can guarantee you’ll get a great workout. Meanwhile we’ll be in the shallow end attempting to get as tan as possible...#fail
Carbs. Are they good? Are they evil? One thing is for certain: they’re delicious. Low carb diets are a common theme in nutrition today, & it can be tricky determining what intake is right for you. To carb or not to carb? Let's answer that question…
Everyone is always talking about #lowcarb and #ketogenic diets. Then they ask us our opinion. Ummm... we love #carbs (that’s our opinion)... @wbanks85 has been eating a 40/30/30 split for years (and loves it). Should you? We have no idea. Everyone is different. We will say this, you're either burning carbs, #fat or #muscle to fuel your workouts. Burning fat for energy is hard (read into it). Burning muscle for energy is easy (no one wants that). We eat to burn carbs because it's easy and effective for our style of #training.
You want your #diet to match your #goals? Talk to a #nutritionist. One way or another it is an #investment in yourself (which is a good investment). It’s simple, you can either hire a professional or waste your time soaking up #broknowledge and missing the #gainstrain. #thechoiceisyours
Love is in the air…or maybe it’s just your diffuser. There seems to be an essential oil for everything these days & because natural is best we had to check them out. Find out how to cure your husband’s snoring (because yes, there’s an oil for that!).
So I JUST hopped on the essential oil train, and let me tell you, I am loving it! Plus my room smells so good.
I was just recently introduced to the difference some well curated essential oils and a diffuser can make for my sleep. She works with Young Living, and dropped some knowledge bombs on me. While I’ve never had a huge issue with sleeping before, this actually all started because my husband was snoring like CRAZY due to some congestion and allergies. Amy loaned me a diffuser and some Peace & Calm oil and cedarwood oil for restful sleep, and some wintergreen oil for Chaz to help with his sinuses.
I like to keep things as au natural as possible, and essential oils are a great way to do it. I’ve actually taken oregano oil and turmeric oil for a long time to give my immune system a boost, but hadn’t considered actually putting oil on pressure points or in a diffuser before.
Essential oils all come from plants and have been around for thousands of years. There’s an oil for everything, from cosmetic and dietary reasons to spiritual and religious purposes. Check out @younglivingeo for more info!
Diet fads, they’re everywhere! It can be hard weeding through trends trying to figure out what works, more importantly what works for YOU. Carbs won’t kill you, & kale won’t make you live forever: let’s navigate the ins & outs of food fads.
It seems we can’t go a day without hearing about a new pill that guarantees losing 48 pounds during one night’s sleep. This can make our job difficult: being client-centered means doing what will work for our clients, and that means being flexible even when we disagree.
An example is the new documentary “What the Health.” Being vegan, it’s awesome that after watching the documentary more people are considering plant-based diets. But it’s not something we push on our clients, we want them to do what works for them no matter what dietary preferences they (or we) have.
We guide clients like this: “We’re excited that you’ve been doing research on your own about nutrition! Why don’t we try incorporating some of what you’ve learned while still sticking to your calories and macros since you’re making great progress!”
When navigating trends make sure to consider what works best for YOU. Get with your coach, weigh pros and cons, and don’t be afraid to try new things. Just because Dr. Celebrity says raspberry ketones will blast fat overnight, doesn’t mean they will. There’s nothing better in fitness and nutrition than hard work and patience!
Convenience is easy. Easy is nice, but not always better. It’s time to say goodbye to processed goodies & whip out the knife & cutting board. Spring has sprung and we're cleaning our cupboards! Find out how to align your kitchen with your goals.
It’s easy to eat what’s convenient. It’s why we love fast food so much: it’s on our way home & we don’t have to cook it. Fast food isn’t the best option, so why keep a kitchen full of ‘fast’ foods? Kitchen audits are a great way to make sure you only keep foods that will help hit nutrition goals.
Precision Nutrition has a list of things you can do to help transform your body, but let’s focus on ways to transform your kitchen:
1)If you don’t want to eat don’t keep it around! Not saying Ben & Jerry’s is bad, but not having a carton in your fridge makes you less likely to eat it. 2)Have fresh healthy foods out in plain sight, like fruits in a decorative bowl on the counter.
3)Try a meal plan service, particularly ones marketed to athletes. They’ll offer more protein and fibrous veggies.
4)Log meals. Knowing what you’ll eat each day for a few days removes mindless eating: you’ll know exactly what to eat & when.
5)Keep chopped, ready to eat veggies in the fridge. Prepping make them easier to cook and can be a great snack with hummus.
Get your kitchen aligned with your goals. If you keep minimally-processed foods at home, that’s what you’ll eat!
Self-reflection during stressful times is a very important practice, especially if ones coping mechanisms become destructive. A common occurrence with overstress is overeating, learn how to stop the stress-eat-repeat cycle with these reflection tips.
Food offers comfort during times of stress. Over-stress & overeating go hand in hand, which may be why you find yourself cartons deep in ice cream after a hard week.
As nutrition coaches, we’re totally ok with fun foods in moderation. Too much can derail progress & lead to cycles of stress-overeating-guilt-restriction. Precision Nutrition offers tips on how to “Break the Chain”. Reflection in times of stress is important especially when it causes overeating.
1) Start with a recent food-related incident (eating foods you didn’t want, feeling out of control with your diet).
2) Write down the things occurring around the incident. Where were you, what were you thinking/feeling?
3) Go back further: how did your day start? Ask yourself the same questions above. Notice a pattern?
4) If you find a pattern, be curious. That doesn’t mean fixing things right away, look at the incident & the thoughts they link with. You may find a solution right away, but more importantly you’re aware.
Mental health is just as important as physical health, so take time to reflect. It doesn’t have to be in a bath with candles & smooth jazz, but you know what? That sounds nice.
Have you heard? 8 glasses of water a day. Fortunately this is 2018 & we’re embracing the notion H20 can be found on plates too. How? Well your Brita doesn’t have to be your only watering hole. Let’s talk about EATING your way to hydration.
We’ve all heard the old adage of, “Drink 8 glasses of water per day.”
For whatever reason, we’ve never been water drinkers and have to force ourselves to drink water. We have to give myself goals, like finishing at least 2 large bottles per day. It’s pathetic, really.
A movement we can definitely get behind is EATING water. We like anything that has to do with eating, so needless to say we were intrigued when we first heard this term.
It’s actually ridiculously simple. It basically means, eat some raw vegetables and fruits as part of your normal diet...because a lot of them are made primarily of, you guessed it, water!
We should all be eating more fruits and veggies anyway, and a lot of them have huge nutrient benefits when you eat them raw - especially veggies.
Some examples of water-dense fruits and veggies are cucumber, celery, radishes, tomatoes, green peppers, cauliflower, watermelon, spinach, strawberries, broccoli, grapefruit, cantaloupe, and so many more.
Next thing you know we’ll be suggesting you drink your veggies...oh wait...
Veggie lovers, this one is NOT for you! This is for our picky eaters that still find themselves pushing vegetables around on their plates like 10 year olds. No worries, it’s not completely your fault! Just train your taste buds, we’ll teach you how.
Did you know that we’re predisposed to liking or disliking vegetables? Veggies usually have a bitter flavor, and most people don’t like bitter tastes.
Some people are very sensitive to strong flavors. We all know a self-proclaimed picky eater, but there is actual science to support this. If your picky friend only likes mild food, they may be a supertaster in that their taste buds aren’t accustomed to hot, bitter flavors.
If you didn’t grow up eating a variety of veggies, you may have decided you don’t like them simply for lack of trying. Growing up with TV dinners, the vegetable was usually corn...not exactly broadening our veggie horizons. Luckily you can train yourself to like them! Precision Nutrition suggests a three-step method: Challenge, complement, cushion.
Challenge yourself to try a new vegetable. Use your likes to determine what to try: if you like broccoli, try asparagus. If you like spinach, try kale. Complement your veggie with another food (use Google for fun recipes). Cushion your veggie with another element to tone down any bitterness. Maple, honey, oil, & butter are all flavors that cushion well.
Now go eat your veggies!
To juice or not to juice? That's the question & we're gonna answer it-YES! Whether it’s fruits, veggies, herbs, spices: the combinations are endless. Wanna supplement your diet with all of the added benefits that juicing brings? Let’s talk flavors.
Juicing…not THAT kind of juicing. We’re talking about good old-fashioned, DIY juicing - the fruits and veggies kind.
While we prefer to eat our food, juicing helps get those micronutrients that we may be missing out on. It’s a great way to mask those veggies you’re not too crazy about but know are good for you (hear that, kale?). This is no cleanse! We’re talking about supplementing the nutrition plan you already have in place with the added benefits of homemade juice.
There are great recipes on the web, but juicing is about finding flavors you like. Men’s Fitness recommends leafy greens, kiwi, papaya, grapefruit, bell pepper, broccoli, oranges, strawberries, asparagus, even garlic! You can also use carrots, apples, ginger root, cucumbers, beets, herbs like parsley and flavors like cayenne or cinnamon.
It may sound like a good idea to whip up a huge batch to save for the week, but the best way to enjoy your juice concoction is ASAP - fruits and veggies lose nutrients over time, especially when changing from solid to liquid and removing those protective skins.
Do we have to say it again? Eat (or drink) your fruits and veggies, people! It’s damn good for you!