Monthly Archives: March 2012

27 03, 2012

Chocolate, Chocolate, Chocolate

March 27th, 2012|Nutrition|Comments Off on Chocolate, Chocolate, Chocolate

How many of you gave up sweets or chocolate for Lent? Have you felt deprived and plan on going crazy in less than two weeks? Deprivation leads to wanting to over-indulge…. my suggestion is to take the opportunity to start moderately.

Where do our chocolate cravings come from?

Chocolate is the most frequently craved food, with 40% of women and 15% of men claiming chocolate yearnings (Yanovski 2003).

Chocolate comprises a complex medley of chemicals that give rise to its unique taste, texture and aroma. Over 400 distinct substances contribute to chocolate’s familiar melt-in-your-mouth smoothness and sweetly unique odor. Chocolate has orosensory properties that enhance our urge for sensory gratification: Simply seeing or smelling it can trigger cravings.

Like drug addictions, food cravings alter potent neurotransmitters that regulate mood. Cocoa butter changes from solid to liquid at mouth temperature, providing the characteristic melt-in-your-mouth quality. This sensation causes the brain to release a flood of endorphins, the body’s natural pain killers, producing temporary feelings of warmth and euphoria. The analgesic effect of chocolate may be a source of sensory addiction for some.

The sugar in chocolate stimulates serotonin, a neurotransmitter that regulates mood and provides a sense of calm and well-being. Within minutes of consumption, the chocolate eater may feel a balmy glow. Chocolate may help chase the blues by raising serotonin levels, though the science behind the “serotonin hypothesis” has been mixed (Parker, Parker & Brochie 2006).

Chocolate contains psychoactive agents that can change mood. Theobromine, a chemical similar to caffeine, is absorbed quickly, mildly stimulating the nervous system to increase the heart rate.

So truely cravings can come from foods. To help reduce cravings start with a well-nutrient-balanced intake including whole grains, lean proteins (animal and plant sources), vegetables, fruits and heart healthy fats. Also, be sure to eat consistently to prevent blood glucose crashes that increase food cravings.

23 03, 2012

Fuel your sport!

March 23rd, 2012|Nutrition|4 Comments

NutriFormance wants to wish all the participants of the 110 hour basketball game benefit for Joplin good luck! Nutrition is always an important part of sports and I am sure these athletes will quickly realize how important it is to fuel their bodies. Imagine how many calories these athletes are burning! Fueling and hydrating their bodies takes nearly as much work as the actually playing for that long.

Sports Nutrition Tip: Try to eat a carbohydrate rich snack 45-60 minutes before exercise. Carbohydrates are the main source of energy for working muscles, so it is important to make sure fuel stores are topped off before exercise. Carbohydrates are found in starchy foods (bread, rice/pasta, cereal, bagels, potatoes, etc), fruit and dairy products.

20 03, 2012

How much is too much?

March 20th, 2012|Nutrition|Comments Off on How much is too much?

Caffeine may be readily available in many drinks, but it can still be dangerous. It is classified as a stimulant, which means that it fuels your central nervous system and increases your energy levels. In small doses, caffeine temporarily gives you pep in your step and it may elevate your mood. However, caffeine’s stimulating effects can quickly become adverse if you consume more caffeine than your body can tolerate. There are also other forms of stimulants to look for on energy drinks (guarana, tyrosine, kola nut, citrus aurantium). Here are four major signs that you should be cutting back.1. You drink more than 4 cups (more than about 400mg per day. Depending on how you brew your coffee some may have 95 milligrams per cup and some may have 200 mg per cup. Too much caffeine can result in side effects such as irritability, restlessness, rapid pulse, muscle tremors, and an upsetstomach.2. Small amounts make you jittery. Some people are more sensitive to caffeine as others. 3. You aren’t sleeping well. No amount of caffeine will recover a good night of sleep and in fact can further interrupt your sleep.4. Are having signs of dependency such as: headache, lethargy, muscle stiffness, nausea. My suggestion to help balance caffeine intake is to make sure that you are hydrating with non-caffeinated beverages such as water in the same amount of ounces as your caffeinated beverages. Many of the people you know probably drink coffee, tea, cola, and other caffeinated drinks on a regular basis. Caffeine seems pretty innocent since it’s so widely available. However, it’s important to keep in mind that caffeine is a drug and that there is such a thing as consuming too much. If you’re like most people, you can have a few cups of a caffeinated beverage per day without any problems. Still, you should be aware of some danger signs that you’ve gone overboard.

13 03, 2012

Don't starve for Spring Break

March 13th, 2012|Nutrition|Comments Off on Don't starve for Spring Break

With warmer weather and spring break here most are thinking about their weight. Do yourself and your bodies a favor and do not starve yourself for the spring weather or wardrobe.

The purpose of many diets is to lose weight. Unfortunately, focusing on just the weight component versus overall body composition and health. The results are immediate but in the long-term lower your metabolism.

Diets that restrict calorie intake offer quick results, but trigger a “starvation response” in which the body slows down its metabolic rate to conserve energy. Once the goal weight is reached and you return to your non diet intake, the body gains weight even faster because it requires fewer calories (the calories you were consuming while dieting) to maintain your bodies functions.

Rapid weight loss results in the loss of large amounts of water, minerals, glycogen, and muscle/organ protein. These undesirable losses of lean body mass are coupled with only minimal losses in fat.

Healthy weight requires consistency and time. Treat your body well and it will treat you well!

5 03, 2012

Just because……

March 5th, 2012|Nutrition|Comments Off on Just because……

Just because we want something to be healthy for us doesn’t mean it is. There are many studies out there on chocolate, caffeine, alcohol etc that are presented in the media showing that these and many other foods can be healthy for us. The most recent study I have come across is that, “having cake for breakfast helps you to lose weight.” http://todayhealth.today.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/02/12/10389613-cake-for-breakfast-study-says-go-for-it#.TzmMXvkACtQ.email

For any study, I encourage you to read the complete study to find out more. Mostly, if it sounds to good to be true then it probably is. However, I am a believer in everything in moderation and by completely avoiding certain foods while trying to lose weight can cause deprivation. You have now given that food more power than it had by giving it a “bad” label. So if you eat it you now have guilt.

A few take aways from the study:

1.Having a balanced breakfast with protein, carbohydrate and fat was shown to increase weight loss.
2.Having a full meal 500-600 calorie breakfast was shown to increase weight loss.
3.Not labeling a food as “bad” or not allowing a food was shown to increase weight loss.
4.If you end your day starving you have not consumed enough for the amount of activity throughout the day and you are now going to consume your largest meal when you are the least active.
5.Having an unbalanced or low calorie breakfast was on the opposite shown to prevent weight loss. Resulting in increased hormone secretion that decreases metabolism.
Bottom line: find out what works for you and your life and stick to it. Our body loves consistency and a healthy weight is a marathon not a sprint.

4 03, 2012

March Hybrid Small Group Personal Training

March 4th, 2012|Hybrid, Personal Training|Comments Off on March Hybrid Small Group Personal Training

Here is the link to the March Hybrid small group personal training!  Learn it, Love it–unless Leo is teaching it!