Power Meal of the Day

I made this meal today for brunch. It may look small but it’s definitely keeps you full with all of its healthy ingredients. Although I should’ve practiced portion control a little better, I just couldn’t help but keep added more! Keep in mind this is already a high calorie meal, and although the calories come from good sources, you always want to avoid over eating. You get so many benefits out of this meal and it really sets you up to continue your day with enough energy while helping to keep you feel good throughout the day!

Sunset Blend Juice (See recipes tab)

Bowl of Oatmeal: 1/4 cup oats, 1/2 cup water, raspberries, cinnamon, honey, greek yogurt, chia seeds, natural peanut butter, almonds, apple muesli cereal

imageThe chia seeds give you antioxidants, fiber, and protein, it helps make up for the fiber lost in the juice. While the peanuts in the natural peanut butter are another source of protein, they also provide monounsaturated fats which help in lowering LDL cholesterol to keep cholesterol out of the blood. The greek yogurt helps promote a healthy gut due to the probiotics. Cinnamon has many different benefits ranging from helping with muscle spasms, preventing Alzheimer’s, help reduce blood sugar, and helps prevent the negative effects of a high fat meal. Almonds provide Vitamin E, magnesium and protein, as well as unsaturated fatty acids and fiber, they have been shown to be helpful in preventing cardiovascular heart disease. The raspberries are rich in vitamins, specifically Vitamins C, K and E, folate, iron, potassium, and manganese. They also contain a variety of the B vitamins and different antioxidants. Last but not least, the oats are full of soluble fiber and many other nutrients, as a valuable whole grain, they have been shown to help prevent heart failure, prevent formation of free-radicals, provide cardiovascular benefits, enhance immune response, lower risk of type 2 diabetes, and many other things. Overall this is a healthy meal, but like I said before, make sure to keep your servings smaller since there are a lot of ingredients and the calories add up fast! Enjoy!

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Juicing and Blending

I’ve noticed there’s a lot of controversy online lately about which is better and healthier for you, juicing or blending? I wanted to put my personal opinion out there and just say that whichever you’re doing, you’re heading in the right direction regardless. Both are ways that you can incorporate more fruits and vegetables into your diet to get important vitamins and minerals. Personally, I will blend when I want to have the drink as breakfast or snack because of the fiber that’s still in your drink, it helps you feel full, and I juice when I want to have it as just a drink. There’s a lot of positives about each one and I wouldn’t say that one is better for you than the other, but watch my video to learn a little about the benefits and convenience of both!

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are an important part of our diet because they’re important for our brain and the main supply of energy throughout the rest of our body too! I made this infographic about carbs on the canvas app!

You can also find it on my pinterest board “Food Functions”, http://www.pinterest.com/adriennesalisbu/

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Don’t Run From Nutrition! Run FOR it!

You’ll always see me talk about how food is what fuels your body. But do you ever wonder about different situations? Like, what to eat before you go to sleep? Or, how about what to eat before you work out? Check out one of my good friend Jumana’s blog about nutrition for runners. She provides recipes and meal ideas that help you warm up and even cool down. As a runner, nutrition graduate student, and a maker of great foods of all kind (she always shares her food!), she’s definitely a good person to seek for advice on this topic. From her knowledge of nutrition in school and her passion for running, her blog provides a lot of great information! My favorite is a recipe she found that was seasonal, delicious, and fueled me up for a workout; baked apple crisp smoothie, yum! Check it out and see what else you can learn! https://bananasforrunners.wordpress.com/

Nutrition for Your Noggin

What a stressful semester this has been! And guess what today’s topic is? Yup, you guessed it, S•T•R•E•S•S.

After doing some research, I found that a lot of foods and drinks that I help when I’m stressed, are actually some that can make it worse. Comfort foods are a big no. This may be the first thing you go to when you’re stressed out but a lot of these foods,at least for me, are high in sugar, butter, or cheese. The high calories that are found, like mac and cheese (my guilty pleasure) in these foods aren’t accompanied with nutrients. Keeping your body healthy by supplying it with healthy nutrients, vitamins, and minerals can help keep your body and your mind in check, and allow your body to work properly and naturally reduce the feelings that are accompanied by stress.

Another thing I’m guilty of is coffee! I rely on it to keep me awake and alert longer so I have more time to finish assignments and study. Again, not a good choice. Try to stay away from caffeinated drinks, especially in the morning. The caffeine puts your body in alert mode so it’s ready for fight or flight. In this state, your body releases hormones that increase symptoms of stress, for example high blood pressure and increased heart rate. Instead of coffee, reach for a glass of water, or an herbal tea.

To get your nervous system nice and strong, increase your intake of Vitamin E, B and C, magnesium and zinc. These are found across different food groups so it’s important to get a little bit of each. Include meats, nuts, seeds, fruits, vegetables and oily fish in your diet to obtain these nutrients and strengthen your nervous system.

So, hopefully with some of these changes and more sleep, I’ll be on the road to a less stressful lifestyle 🙂

(http://www.stress.org.uk/Diet-and-nutrition.aspx)

H2whOah

Water helps fuel all of the major functions of our bodies. Drinking water helps improve your bodies ability to do work, to function correctly, and make you feel GOOD! The idea of life revolves around the same revolving ideas and principles on any scale of comparison. Water is reused by our earth to give life to plants and trees, and to us! As a living being of this earth, we need to recycle our water to our bodies too, constantly fueling it with a a bunch of water. Did you know about 80% of your weight is from water?!

Water exists in all major parts of your body, it compromises 92% of your blood, 73% of your brain, 73% of your heart, 83% of your lungs, 64% of your skin, 79% of your muscles, 79% of your kidneys, and 31% of your bones.

Water prevents tiredness, helps deliver oxygen to your body parts, aids in digestion, improves circulation, helps make saliva, prevents cramps, moisturizes skin, and provides fuel for muscles. The benefits are endless!

(http://yearzerosurvival.com/water-natures-cure-all-2/)

As you can see, water is important, so we should all be drinking it, all day, everyday. Want to know how much water you should drink? The rule of thumb is  64 oz. (or 8 cups) per day, but you can try using this method too which is known as a way to calculate your daily requirements: divide your weight in half, and this is what your water intake should be per day, divide this number by 8 to see how many cups this is, and always round up because MORE IS BETTER! For example, if you weight 150lbs… 150/2=75 oz/8= 9.34, so a 150lb person should drink 10 cups of water per day to keep their body healthy!

Tips on how to drink more water daily:
-buy a water bottle that you like
-carry it with you everywhere!
-drink a glass of water first thing when you wake up
-drink at least 4 oz. of water before starting a meal
-take sips of water after each few bites while eating
-drink a glass of water before bed
-if you drink a lot of juices, try pouring only 3/4 of what you usually pour, and make the rest water, as time goes by, make this ratio favor water more and more
-water comes from food too! Try eating more cucumbers, lettuce, celery, green peppers, watermelon, tomatoes, strawberries, spinach and other foods with a high water content! (http://www.eatright.org/public/slideshow.aspx?id=6442470873#1)

For more tips on drinking water, check out this page from eatright.org, http://www.choosemyplate.gov/food-groups/downloads/TenTips/DGTipsheet19MakeBetterBeverageChoices.pdf.

Listen to my podcast (posted in the sidebar) to learn about dehydration!

Cravings and their secrets (Poll Winner #1)

Ever wonder what causes that sudden urge and random desire to eat a bowl of ice cream or munch on some chips or eat a candy bar? It could be that your body is trying to tell you something! In many cases, when we get hungry or have a craving, our body is dehydrated, so when you feel this way, try to make your first resolution be to drink a glass of water and see if the feeling subsides. This isn’t always the case though!

Your body could be telling your brain that its lacking something, like a specific vitamin, nutrient or mineral, and our brain responds by relating that specific thing to something it is use to consuming. Women’s Health Magazine (http://www.womenshealthmag.com/weight-loss/food-cravings) describes examples such as sugar cravings.

While our blood sugar is fluctuating with spikes and plateaus, our body realizes these changing levels and sends signals to different parts of your body in order to compensate for the changes. One way that it does this could be causing a craving. Other ways will be described in more details in a future blog about sugar breakdown. When we have low blood sugar, our body will want to take in more sugar, and we could interpret this as a craving for something sugary like ice cream or candy. However, these sort of sugary foods, which have a high glycemic index (http://www.diabetes.org/food-and-fitness/food/what-can-i-eat/understanding-carbohydrates/glycemic-index-and-diabetes.html), can cause even larger spikes in our blood sugar. Instead of settling for these sweets, try a healthier alternative (see link) for a sugary food item that is better for you and causes less spikes in blood-glucose levels! Some unexpected foods that you can eat to end your craving for sweets include whole grain bread, beans, sweet potatoes, carrots and corn!

When your craving red meat your body could be telling you that you’re iron deficient. Instead of cramming in a burger or steak which is high in saturated fats and cholesterol, try some dried fruits, beans and legumes!

Fatty foods can indicate the lack of essential and fatty acids in your body which should be overcome with healthy fats like omega-3 fatty acids which can be found in wild-caught salmon, walnuts, flax seeds, cauliflower, tofu and brussels sprouts.

Your cravings can also signify a smaller, more molecular indication. Check out this chart from livefreelivenatural.com for some more suggestions!

cravings

**note that food cravings are not signs of malnutrition and are also influenced by other psychological and environmental factors

Taste Timeline

I was browsing through Pinterest and saw a really interesting image that came from http://www.nature.com that gave a timeline about the different ways we taste and the discovery of those ways. I was really surprised that a lot of our taste receptors were found pretty recently! I always think its pretty neat to relate history and biology and see the background of the discoveries, it puts a new perspective on science and gives a lot of insight to things you might not otherwise consider.

Although many people think that the different tastes, salty, sour, sweet and bitter, are recognized in different areas of the tongue, it has actually been shown that tastes can actually be sensed from all parts of the tongue, with greater recognition on the sides. Bitterness is usually stronger tasting on the back of the tongue which is thought to be an evolutionary way to be able to spit out poisons or spoiled foods before swallowed.

Where tastes come from:

Sour: Hydrogen ions released from acidic foods like lemons provide that sour taste that makes you squinch up your face!

Salty: Sodium Chloride or other mineral salts like potassium chloride and magnesium chloride give the salty taste

Sweet: most sweet foods are high in sugar! Sugar and other derivatives like lactose help make your foods and candy sweet. certain amino acids and some alcohols can also be perceived by your senses as sweet!

Bitter: isn’t it weird when you think something is so bitter that you can’t even eat it, but your friend has no problem with it at all? There is still research being done on this as there are many theories as to why. It’s said that the bitter sensation could have developed in order to protect our bodies from poisons and other harmful things that develop this taste.

What about everything else?! There’s another taste called umami. I know, it sounds like a delicious chinese chicken and vegetable plate, but it’s not. Umami is described as savory and the taste comes from glutamic or aspartic acids.

(http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0033701/)

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Let’s Digest: Why we eat food

newapple

I don’t know about you but eating is one of my favorite things! There are many factors that determine when and why we eat. First off, hunger! It is definitely annoying, and sometimes embarrassing, to hear the growls of whatever monster seems to be living inside of you when you’re hungry.

Our first instinct is to feed it! Other times we eat before we get this feeling. For example, you just ate your Thanksgiving dinner and you feel more full than ever, but out comes the desserts, and there you find yourself with fresh baked pumpkin pie and apple crisp leaving your fork and entering your mouth. Although you felt like you couldn’t fathom even one more bite, our senses stimulate our desire to eat again. Who can turn down the smell of warmly baked apples in the fall?! Not me! Sometimes even just seeing something that looks tasty make you want to eat it too! I bet the picture above made your mouth water, too!

Aside from just WANTING food, our body actually needs it, and will send us signals to tell us when we do. This is often what happens when our stomach growls. It growls when food is done being digested, and there is no more food to muffle the noise of the digestion process. The growling noise we hear and feel make us aware, and hungry. This complicated process is put simply for now. In following blogs, I will discuss the impacts that eating has as determined by when and why we eat.

(http://www.eufic.org/article/en/artid/food-choice-complex-behaviour/)