Eat Pretty: A Book Review

I just got done reading this book by Jolene Hart, entitled Eat Pretty.  I definitely give this one an A in the category of educating those who have no formal education in nutrition.

We are always taught that choosing healthy foods leads to weight loss and overall a more “attractive” physique.  Some people are lucky enough to get taught that good nutrition helps prevent or control diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, etc.  Very few people are actually taught how the foods we eat affect our complexion.

This book does an excellent job at classifying the foods that give acne, skin rashes, and more as beauty betrayers, while those those that promote a healthy complexion are deemed beauty foods.  The other great job the other did was classifying the foods by season, because as most of us know, not all foods are available year round.

The other also dedicated a section to non-nutritional factors that may affect our weight and complexion like stress, sleep, water, and hormone function.  Factors many people tend to look.

My favorite part about this book is how the author goes into how she perceives balance, which to me is the most important.  So many books stress restriction and don’t that they miss the overall point of a balanced lifestyle.

If you are interested in learning what foods and how they contribute to our radiant skin, I definitely recommend you Buy the book here, you won’t regret it!

Learn more about the best online fitness program which includes comprehensive programs focused on shifting towards healthier eating habits, staying fit, and building a better booty. You’ll also find a variety of fitness apparel to help get you that extra motivation to take your goals to another level. Contact me today to learn more about the best fitness programs available to get your body in gear.

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7 Plant Based Foods That Help Promote Healthy Bones

Research has found that diets rich in whole foods, specifically potassium, magnesium, vitamin D, high quality protein, and calcium make for healthier bones.  With the plant based diet gaining more popularity I’d thought I’d share 7 foods that are great for healthy bones and vegan!  Building strong bones doesn’t just come from milk and cheese!

  1. Spinach
  2. Fortified Cereal
  3. Collard Greens
  4. Bok Choy
  5. Sweet Potato
  6. Grape Fruit
  7. Figs

Learn more about the best online fitness program which includes comprehensive programs focused on shifting towards healthier eating habits, staying fit, and building a better booty. You’ll also find a variety of fitness apparel to help get you that extra motivation to take your goals to another level. Contact me today to learn more about the best fitness programs available to get your body in gear.

5 Foods That Claim To Be All Natural But Aren’t

We have all seen the labels that say 100% all natural, and many buy them thinking that they are because well we trust labels right?  At the end of the day the food industry is a business, sometimes they do things that aren’t in our best interest and here are 5 foods they make us believe are healthy and all natural, but aren’t.

  1. Granola Bars:  We have all bought those delicious organic, all natural granola bars thinking we were doing it right.  The problem is many of these granola bars contain artificial sweeteners and “natural” flavors.  Natural flavors is a cop out for flavors that are derived from natural sources…in a lab.
  2. Yogurts:  They have the same problem as granola bars.  TONS of artificial sweeteners, “natural” flavors, and added sugars or sugar alcohols.  (sugar alcohols aren’t so great either)
  3. Bottled Iced Tea:  Natural flavors, sugar and/or high fructose corn syrups should not be listed on the back of the label.  Green and black teas in there natural form are packed with antioxidants, but the benefits get smashed when they’re paired with sugar.
  4. Salad Dressing: If it’s not home made, read the label.  Those long 10+ ingredient labels are proof that those “all natural” salad dressings really aren’t that natural.
  5. Ice Cream:  We have seen so many new dairy free, gluten free, yady da, etc.  Ice creams pop up on the market advertising high protein, low calories, and no sugar, but they taste sweet.  Why?  They are packed with sugar alcohols (usually the ingredient that ends in “ol”)…which they are NOT natural.

Learn more about the best online fitness program which includes comprehensive programs focused on shifting towards healthier eating habits, staying fit, and building a better booty. You’ll also find a variety of fitness apparel to help get you that extra motivation to take your goals to another level. Contact me today to learn more about the best fitness programs available to get your body in gear.

5 Bizarre Sounding Fitness Facts That Are Actually True

  1. Want to fit into a smaller pant size? Lift heavier weight.  If you are overweight, shift your focus to gaining muscle and losing fat by spending more time with dumbbells and barbless and a little less time on the elliptical.  Muscle takes up less space than fat, but is more dense than fat so weight loss may not always reflect on the scale, but yes on the pant sizes!
  2. Want to lose weight? Eat More:  Consuming 1200 calories in donuts and empty calories will yield different results compared to 1400 calories rich in whole food, fruits, and vegetables.  (hint: you will lose more consuming 1400 calories in whole foods)
  3. Want to lose the bloat?  Drink more water!  You’d think that more water would mean more water weight.  But not always!  Water can stimulate the release of excess water retention and can also help alleviate any bloating by helping your body actually use the restroom (water stimulates bowel movement).
  4. Exercise if you are tired:  If you are exhausted it may be a good idea to bring down intensity, but it is still important as exercise energizes.
  5. Not drinking diet soda will help you lose weight:  Research has actually shown that individuals who consume diet soda end up eating more calories daily!  Swap your diet sodas, regular sodas, and sugar filled juices for water

Learn more about the best online fitness program which includes comprehensive programs focused on shifting towards healthier eating habits, staying fit, and building a better booty. You’ll also find a variety of fitness apparel to help get you that extra motivation to take your goals to another level. Contact me today to learn more about the best fitness programs available to get your body in gear.

8 Things That You Should Be Teaching Your Children About Nutrition

While I do not currently have kids, I work with a lot of parents and I observe a lot of parents and what they teach their children about nutrition.  Before I begin, I get a lot of heat from people whenever I opine about pregnancy, infant nutrition, adolescent health and fitness.  The same way your male Dr. does not need to know what it feels like to be pregnant in order to help guide you through a healthy pregnancy, an exercise physiologist with an extensive back ground in academic nutrition (not jo shmo nutrition blogs) can help you establish healthy habits for you and your family.  There are 2 critical periods for when children establish the number and size of the adipocyte tissue (aka our fat tissue) in infancy and in adolescence.  The goal as a parent should be to do your best to keep the fat cell size to as small as possible and fat cell number to as little as possible. Here are 8 things parents should be doing in order to help set their children up for health success!  These are not my opinion, they are all backed by the sciences.

  1. In infancy, stick to infant ONLY foods!  No need to sneak an infant soda, friend food, lasagna, or processed sugar before 12 months!  While it may seem like they can handle it, inside their body react adversely
  2. In infancy, if you’re a parent who gives your baby anything that is not labeled for infants because you want to or that’s “how you grew up” (only science is now realizing the way you grew up has lead to a ridiculously obese population), please do NOT give your baby anything that has honey or corn syrup in it.  I see it all of the time and a little piece of my soul dies because you are potentially exposing your baby to something called botulism.  Botulism is a death sentence, if they contract it from honey or any food that has corn syrup because their organism cannot fight it off.
  3. Go as long as you can (goal 12 months) if you are able to breast feed.  Make the sacrifice because the immunological, health, cognitive, you name it benefits far surpass the benefits of formula.  Understand that formula is a first world commodity. In 3rd world countries it’s either you breast feed or the baby unfortunately passes.  Formula is meant to keep your baby nourished enough to where infant death is not an issue in case breast feeding does not happen.
  4. Moving away from infancy and into childhood, one of the biggest mistakes parents make, especially those in the hispanic community (It’s the anthropological studies saying it, not me!) is impose the “clear your plate” mentality.  We have something in our brains called the hypothalamus and it lets us know when we are hungry and when we are full.  The beautiful thing about children (and babies too) is that they have not fried it the way most adults do.  Meaning, their brain still tells them when they should stop eating before they get to a place of over eating.  The clear your plate mentality breeds obesity.  If your child doesn’t want to eat anymore, don’t force them to eat twice as much as they want.  Trust me, they won’t die of starvation.
  5. Don’t make dessert something they can have only if they eat their vegetables.  Find a way to make them enjoy their veggies without bribing them.  If they eat their veggies every day that would mean they get dessert everyday.
  6. Which, brings me to my next point, junk foods, processed sugars, fried foods, sodas, etc. are not foods we should keep at our children’s reach all of the time.  They do not know what nutrient density is, they only know that those foods taste yummier so without realizing it you are allowing them to build poor habits when you aren’t around.  In my house we bring ZERO of the aforementioned and I plan to keep it that way when we have kids.  We do this so that when we go out, it’s OKAY to have a fried shrimp or lava cake because it’s something that we do not eat every day at our home.
  7. This leads me to point number seven.  Teach kids about balance!  I’m not by any means saying forever forbid your kids from eating junk food.  What I am saying is make junk food 15-20% of their overall diet.  Fill the rest with a plethora of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, non-antiobiotic/steroid packed protein sources, nuts, seeds, and legumes.  Growing up chips and sodas were something my mom would save for when friends came over, the few times we went out to eat, or for the holidays.  I personally, love this approach because what do all of those events have in common?  They happen in a minority, meaning the majority of the time you are nourishing your child.
  8. Try to pack your child’s lunch.  It’s a great way of controlling what goes in to fuel their bodies and NEVER let them skip breakfast!  Myplate.gov has killer tools and articles to help you choose healthy lunches.  These plates also from mygov are GREAT to help YOU as a parent portion out each food group while teaching them at the same time what their plate should look like.
  9. Bonus:  Try to teach them how to make healthy choices and why it’s important.  If you are clueless, find a health professional who CAN!  When you understand why something needs to be done it’s easier to do it.

Learn more about the best online fitness program which includes comprehensive programs focused on shifting towards healthier eating habits, staying fit, and building a better booty. You’ll also find a variety of fitness apparel to help get you that extra motivation to take your goals to another level. Contact me today to learn more about the best fitness programs available to get your body in gear.

6 Tips For Making Your Shopping Trips Healthier

The grocery store is one of my favorite places, so many fresh produce and beautiful colors.  But it’s also one of the most complicated places for someone who is brand new to their journey.  Here are 6 tips for making your shopping trips healthier:

  1. Never go on an empty stomach:  We’ve all been there, but have you noticed that you spend more and put more junk into your cart when you go hungry?  Make it a point to have a meal before you head out to avoid over spending and overindulging.
  2. Read the Labels:  And by label I don’t mean the front of the package with all of the sneaky labels.  I mean the ingredients and nutrient content.
  3. Avoid the aisles:  Not all of the aisles, but most!   Why?  Your groceries should be 90% fresh produce, the aisles are ridded with boxed foods and junk.  You want the majority of your diet to be fresh WHOLE foods that rot relatively quickly.
  4. Start with produce:  When you begin to fill up your cart with whole foods, by the time you get to the grains and aisles, you already see a full cart and mentally think you’re almost done.
  5. Make a List:  Make a list of everything you need to buy!  It cuts time, cost, and random stowaways from making it to the cart.
  6. Go with a water bottle.  If by some reason you start to feel hungry, sipping on water can keep the hunger at bay and avoid those crazy items making it into your cart.

 

Learn more about the best online fitness program which includes comprehensive programs focused on shifting towards healthier eating habits, staying fit, and building a better booty. You’ll also find a variety of fitness apparel to help get you that extra motivation to take your goals to another level. Contact me today to learn more about the best fitness programs available to get your body in gear.

13 Nutritional Swaps For People Trying To Live Healthier

You don’t have to be miserable to be healthy, but you do have to make a little bit of effort!

  1. Swap the bag of chips for an apple with salted peanut butter (make sure peanuts and salt are your only 2 ingredients) and then instead of low quality carbs and fats with slim to no micronutrients you’ll be getting high quality carbs, fats, proteins, AND micronutrients
  2. Swap the juices for water…we get enough added sugar in our diets without even trying
  3. Swap the fried foods for grilled
  4. Have rice and potatoes with protein for lunch?  Swap one of the carbs for a fresh salad
  5. Do you add sugar to your fruit bowls? Swap the the sugar for a sprinkle of chia seeds
  6. Swap smoothie shop smoothies for home made ones.  Did you know most of those smoothie places just give you fake fruit juice and call it a day?
  7. Swap your store bought protein bars for for some boiled eggs
  8. Swap your diet sodas for regular sodas…don’t fall into marketing traps….but better yet swap all of the sodas for water
  9. Swap the milk chocolate for dark chocolate
  10. Swap your pudding for apple sauce (apples-maybe water too-should be the ONLY ingredient)
  11. Swap the morning cereal for steel cut oats and berries
  12. Swap the regular yogurt for Greek Yogurts with added probiotics
  13. Swap your Starbucks Latte for some green tea (without adding sugar)

Learn more about the best online fitness program which includes comprehensive programs focused on shifting towards healthier eating habits, staying fit, and building a better booty. You’ll also find a variety of fitness apparel to help get you that extra motivation to take your goals to another level. Contact me today to learn more about the best fitness programs available to get your body in gear.