Archive | Health

ARE YOU EATING UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF ORTHOREXIA?

 

Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.  

We live in such a diet-saturated culture, that we don’t even see disordered thoughts when they are literally in in huge black print in front of us.  What is so disheartening is how often I’ve seen it on Instagram.

Big bloggers aren’t just people with a diy website- they have following & influence.  My friend, you may not realize it, but you are eating under the influence.  These influencers are why you have more avocados and sweet potatoes on your grocery list.  They are why you choke down kombucha (let’s be honest- that stuff is vile) for the probiotics.  They are why you make smoothies.  They are why you feel you should “detox“.   Continue Reading →

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7 SIGNS THAT NUTRITIONIST YOU ARE FOLLOWING IS FULL OF BALONEY

  1. They talk about leaky gut as though it is a diagnosis.  

    Healthcare professionals refer to this as intestinal permeability.  Far from being a diagnosis, it is a symptom.  Leaky gut does not cause illnesses, illnesses cause a leaky gut.  Also, aside from an unreliable mannitol/lactose test, there is no medical test for it.  If the site you are on tells you otherwise, chances are the rest of the stuff on their site is unfounded.

  2.  They don’t have real credentials.

    If you are in the US, you do not have to have ANY education at all to call yourself a nutritionist.  If you want to be more official, you can do an online nutrition certificate training program that is only $49 through Groupon, though.  Get your info from someone who has made it through the required science courses in university, has sat for a rigorous examination, who has had other professionals say “Yes, this person knows what they are talking about.”  This vetted professional is much more likely to be able to discern fake studies from the real ones, interpret the results and conclusions for you, and give you sound advice based on it.  The other guy is just recycling what he has heard someone else say.

  3. They have an obsession with detoxing and cleanses.

    But, I’ve already talked about this, haven’t I?

  4. They claim to have the information all the doctors are sweeping under the rug.

    Doctors, dietitians, physical therapists, etc- we want the answers as much as you do, but we have to admit when we don’t have them.  Otherwise we would lose our licenses due to recklessness.  People who don’t have licenses have nothing to lose (and usually, something to sell).

  5. They say their recipe has no sugar yet it calls for maple syrup or honey.

    Sorry to say, but maple syrup and honey are sugar.  For example, 1 T of maple syrup = roughly 15 gm of sugar;  1 T of honey = roughly 15 gm sugar; 1 T table sugar = 15 gm sugar.  Eating too much syrup or honey will still make your blood sugars shoot up faster than you can say paleo cupcake.

  6. They say their recipe has only natural sugars.  

    Whether “natural” or processed, sugar does the same thing in your body regardless of which you choose.  As for the “more nutrients” argument? If you want more nutrients, well- mix in a salad, champ.

  7.  They have before and after pictures.

    There is nothing helpful about these pictures.  If anything, they are triggers for people who have body dysmorphia or eating disorders.  Can we just stop with the sports bra selfies, already?!  What does that say about being healthy?  Or about being beautiful, for that matter? (Also, why do we call them selfies when the pictures say nothing about who we are?  It’s just our shell.  Perhaps we should call them shellies??) Most sites that use before and after pictures are not concerned about health- just the appearance of it.

 

Bonus: They proudly post pictures of themselves with Dr. Oz.

This wasn’t on my original list when I was planning this post, but I have noticed one particular “doctor” blogger with a massive following who has so much nutrition misinformation I honestly thought he was trying to be funny.  Unsurprisingly, he proudly associates himself with Dr. Oz. A man who, when called before a Senate hearing to defend why he lied to millions of  viewers and used his doctor status to sell supplements, said, “I passionately study them. I recognize they oftentimes do not often have the scientific muster to present them as fact.”  Yeeeeeeeet, he presents them as fact.  Do not trust someone who will happily associate their credibility with his.

And, while there are more red flags I could cover, I  believe these will filter out most garbage for you.  Don’t be surprised if this turns into a series of posts, though.

If you’d like to know some of my favorite REAL nutritionists/dietitians to follow are, check this out.

 

Further reading/resources:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WA0wKeokWUU // http://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-news/how-dr-oz-effect-has-hooked-american-consumers-n134801 //http://www.cbsnews.com/news/dr-oz-endorsed-green-coffee-bean-diet-study-retracted/ // http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/04/23/dr-oz-products_n_7120654.html
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WHY DO NUTRITION HEADLINES CHANGE SO MUCH?

Many of my patients complained that dietitians went backwards and forwards on themselves. Fat is bad!  Fat is great!  Carbs are bad!  Fruit is bad!   I understand what they are saying-  if you look at nutrition headlines they certainly can’t make up their minds, but dietitians rarely have to waffle.  This is because we have been trained to read the research and assess it.  If the setup of a study isn’t sound, we won’t even look at the results and conclusion.  We know they are at best unfounded, and at worst fabricated.  The problem comes in when people don’t know how to read the research, they just look at the results, and then they spread it on their blogs and newspapers.  This infographic shows you where things can go wrong for people who write *sciencey things based on “evidence”.  (*sciencey:  looks like science because it uses studies and big words, but it doesn’t have a lick of truth.) Continue Reading →

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FIT FOR LIFE- IT TAKES GUTS

immune health

Seventy percent of your body’s immune system lies in the most unlikely of places- your gut.  The 5-8 POUNDS of bacteria in your gut acts as a mainline defense mechanism for your body- each bacterium a soldier in the fight.  Keeping your gut healthy by ensuring you have more good bacteria than bad, is crucial to keeping the rest of you healthy.

There are a five keys to a healthy gut…

  1.  Probiotics- Probiotics are your good (pro-) bacteria (-biotic).  Your gut already has Fermented foods such as yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, etc are great natural sources.  There are many probiotic supplements that will support gut health, too.  Align and Culturelle are my favorite brands in America.  (I will update this post once I’ve sourced a go-to for my UK friends.)  Be sure to get a dose of probiotics every day.
  2. Prebiotics- Another interesting fact- those little bacterial soldiers are vegetarians.  They feast on the fiber that travels through.  This is just another reason why it is so important to have half your plate veggies and fruits.
  3. Cut down on sugars.  Bad bacteria have a raging sweet tooth.  Every time you indulge- whether it’s on Oreos, fruit juice, biscuits, or any other over-processed carbohydrate, you are giving your bad bacteria a feed.  In healthy individuals can stand to do this more often than those prone to stomach issues.  If you find yourself with digestive issues, do yourself a favor and tame your sweet tooth.
  4. Take time with your meals- Digestion starts in your mouth with the enzymes in your saliva.  Put a small piece of bread in your mouth- don’t chew.  Notice how the taste of the bread gets sweeter the longer it’s in there?  That’s because the amylase in your saliva is breaking down the complex carbohydrates into simple sugars.  Will you hate me if I insert a chirpy “Science is fun!” here?
  5. Stop grazing.  Your gut has a cleansing wave go through every 90-120 minutes, but only when fasting.  If you snack often, you won’t allow your body the opportunity to initiate the cleansing wave.  This can contribute to bloating, gas build up, and eventually overgrowth of “bad” bacteria in those with sensitive tummies.
  6.  Sleep.  If you are one of those that runs on 5 hours of sleep a night because you are so busy- stop it.  Sleep is not for wimps.  It is essential to keep you healthy so you can keep going.  If it makes you feel any better, sleep is an active event.  This is when your body does most of it’s restoration and repair.  Get at least 7 hours.
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FIT FOR LIFE- FILL YOUR PLATE

fresh

For all those who were at Fit for Life, I thought doing a follow-up post might be a helpful supplement to the 5 minutes I get with you on Thursday nights.  For an overview of healthy eating, read this article.

Thursday night I emphasized eating more vegetables.  We really only had time to see what you normally eat vs what your plate should actually look like,which is this…

Healthy Plate

 

But here is a look at what setting up your plate this way does for you…

4 compelling reasons you should eat more vegetables

1- To keep your gut healthy

A healthy gut isn’t just important for bathroom-related reasons.  Did you know that 70% of your immune system is in your GUT?  I know, right?!  One of the essentials of a healthy gut is maintaining good bacteria.  The good bacteria’s favorite food?  Fiber.  Whether it comes from vegetables or fruit or whole grains, your gut will be it’s healthiest when it gets the fiber it needs.  Your target is 25-30 grams a day, but no need to keep tally of your fiber grams if you are eating vegetables for half of your lunch and dinner.

2-  To keep your heart healthy

Fiber not only feeds your good bacteria, but it keeps your cholesterol where it should be as well.  Go natural, though- foods fortified with fiber typically don’t do you much good.  Fiber also helps your body fight against inflammation which can cause damage to your blood vessels and muscle tissue (read that: your heart).

3- To cut down on calories without cutting down on food.

Anyone who has tried to lose weight knows that the second you have to start cutting back on food is the second you can’t stop thinking about food. Vegetables are naturally nutrient dense, but low in calories.  It’s a win-win situation.  Don’t go overboard, though, in efforts to cut your calories.  Starchy carbs and fruits keep your energy levels up throughout the day.  They also prevent bouts of hanger resulting from low blood sugars.  Protein is necessary to keep you full between meals, as well as for a proper functioning body.  Everything from healthy skin to your body’s detoxification systems rely on protein.  A quarter of your plate each for carbs and protein should give you what you need.

4-  To prevent lots of scary stuff.

The nutrition label focuses a lot on carbs, proteins, and fats, but the truth is, those are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to nutrients your body needs to function properly.  Vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals are crucial.  Think of all the things that can go wrong when you don’t get enough…  low Ca? Osteoporosis, low Vitamin D? Depression, low iron? weakness/fatigue, low Vitamin C? Inability to heal, scurvy, low Vitamin A?  loss of eyesight.  Low on phytonutrients?  More vulnerable to illness  and inflammation.
In short- EAT YER GREENS!  Veggies should be half of what you eat at lunch AND dinner.  If you can hit that target, the rest will usually fall into place.  

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