Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Concerned about added sugars? Here's how to be an added sugar detective this Halloween!


Halloween is that time of year when kids rejoice, parents groan and dentists cringe. The holiday by tradition is filled with sugar-glazed donuts, gooey caramel apples and chewy candies of all sorts. It is a good thing Halloween comes only once a year, as regular intake of these high-sugar foods wreaks havoc on our health in more ways than one. A study assessing the U.S. NHANES 2007-2008 data reported that added sugars provided 14.6% of total energy intake in individuals' diets with the main contributors being soda and energy/sports drinks, grain-based desserts, fruit drinks, dairy desserts and candy. The USDA recommends no more than 32gm (or 8 tsp) of added sugars/day per 2,000 Kcal of intake; this is equivalent to 6% of calories from added sugars.

So after the costumes are put away and the candy is eaten (or thrown out), what can you do on a daily basis to make sure your intake of added sugars isn't sky-high? First, lets review the facts:

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Beyond the Liver: Alcohol & Athletes

This week, enjoy a guest blog post from Carrie Aprik MS, RD, CSSD. Carrie practices as sports RD in Michigan. She can be reached at Nutrition4Motion@gmail.com. Follow her on Twitter @Nutri4Motion. Thanks Carrie!

Be Extraordinary, 

RDKate
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For many students, the college experience has become synonymous with binge drinking; an activity that may involve up to dozens of alcoholic drinks in a single weekend. Every weekend. Surprisingly, “excessive drinking” is classified as much less: 5 or more drinks in one bout for males, 4 or more for females.  According to the NCAA1, though the prevalence has decreased, 46% and 33% of male and female athletes, respectively, admit to excessive drinking. Beyond the well-known threat of liver damage to the average college student, student athletes have many more alcohol-related issues to worry about.  

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Eating Tips for the Pregnant Athlete

 

Pregnancy no longer means stopping all exercise. Nowadays, with the okay of a doctor, women can keep exercising right up until they deliver. This is great, but also poses questions about eating. If you are pregnant and exercising, here are a few things to keep in mind.

1. Without exercise, you need to add approximately 300 Kcal per day during the second trimester and 300-500 Kcal per day during the third trimester for proper growth of the baby. So, should you choose to keep exercising, be sure to increase intake too. Pregnancy is not a time to lose weight.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

It's too early to eat - help!


Last week I  blogged about great late-night eating options for those athletes that are hungry and/or need to eat late at night, but are not sure what they should choose. The other question I am often asked is which foods are best early in the morning before athletes feel like they are really "awake" but know that they need to eat. So, once again, lets start with some ground rules:

1. If you have an early workout, it is never too early to eat something. In fact, never go to a morning workout on an empty stomach. Even athletes who have severe exercise-induced GERD can typically find something that they tolerate in small quantities. 

2. If you are chronically skipping the first meal of the day because it is "too early", it is common to no longer feel hungry in the morning. The body will adjust to what you throw at it. If you ignore early morning hunger signals, the body eventually gives up signalling. But you can bring those back by starting to eat again.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

It is late, but I'm hungry! What should I eat?


I am often asked by athletes what a good late-night snack might be. Whether it is because they are up late doing homework or finishing a late workout, there is typically confusion about what a good choice might be so close to bed. Before I answer that question, let me state a few guidelines with respect to eating late:

-Don't eat less than 1 hour before bed. If you eat closer than this, you will be trying to sleep while your body tries to digest (two entirely opposite processes).

-Don't eat a huge meal late at night. If you truly can't eat dinner earlier in the evening, then break up dinner into mini-meals or larger snacks throughout the evening. Another technique is to eat more earlier in the day in preparation for not being able to eat a true dinner.