Fit Tip of the Week & Recipe

So we hear a bunch of mumble jumble all the time about Carbs vs Fats vs Proteins, how much of this should I eat, or what carbs are really bad, how much protein should I have, etc etc. It can be a little overwhelming at times and a little discouraging if you’re not listening to the right sources.  This week I have two simplifying guidelines that if you stick to, can make a big difference, and help you towards weight loss or fitness goals.  I’m not saying this is the answer to it all, but just some simple guidelines that are easy to follow. I find that with my clients if we focus on one or two things at a time instead of a whole list of do's and don'ts, they are a lot more successful and less stressed! So if you don't know where to start, here a couple of tips you can start with today:

    1.The label equation: On products with nutrition labels, like a cottage cheese carton for example, you'll find the total number of carbs first. Then from that number, you'll subtract fiber, and then protein. Whatever number you end up with, (in the case of cottage cheese, a -8), will act as the measuring tool to determine if it's something you want to eat or not. A number 15 and below is decent. 10 and below is good.  And 5 and below, down into the negative numbers, is pretty darn great. The reason being is that Carbs are the main source of energy/calories for our body to use, Fiber goes through the body instead of being absorbed as calories.  It helps keep the digestive track healthy.  And Protein is a secondary source of energy for our bodies to use, but requires more work from us in order for our bodies to use and absorb the energy.  

I'm not saying that this method is perfect for determining the health profile for everything you eat. And obviously the really great things that we should be focusing our diet on (such as fresh vegetables) don’t necessarily come with a nutrition label. And chocolate rice cakes and fiber one bars alone are going to be a really small number, but that doesn't exactly mean they're providing a whole lot for you. But as far as interpreting all the fat-free, sugar-free, gluten-free labels, It’s just a quick tool to use when your making those decisions.  


    2. The Sugar Limit:  Instead of worrying about all the numbers and calculations, I think the most important one to focus on is your sugar intake.  If your looking to make progress in weight loss you want to keep your daily sugar intake below 35g.

Several studies recently are showing sugar intake as the leading correlation with cancers, diabetes, Obesity, and all sorts of crappy stuff.  

This amount can add up quick!  a decent sized banana has about 17g of sugar so thats about 1/2 your daily intake.  a Cliff bar that some people view as a “healthy snack” has about 22g of sugar!  Some lower sugar fruit options are berries, avocados, or melons. Obviously fruit is the better option compared to a “sugar free” ice-cream fudge bar, but you still want to consider the sugar content and have in moderation.  Try to fill your diet with lean proteins and vegetables, and have fruit as your treat or around your training time if your doing some intense workouts, and you’ll be well on your way to your goals.

This week the recipe is an awesome option for a Smoothie to enjoy pre or post workout that’s not packed with sugar like a typical fruit smoothie is.  This smoothie will keep you full for longer and give you energy.  Not to mention provides tons of vitamins and nutrients your body needs!

Recipe of the Week:

Green Avo-Cinnamon-choco Smoothie…. (aka creamy freakin goodness)

  • 6-8 oz unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 5-6 ice cubes
  • 1/2 frozen banana
  • 1 scoop chocolate protein powder (whey/casein blend- I use Orgain Organic protein powder, chocolate, from Costco, or Gnarly Nutrition has a great protein as well!)
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1 rounded tsp cinnamon
  • handful of kale or spinach

Nutrition Totals

Calories: 226, Carbs: 28g, Fat: 11g, Protein: 15g, Sodium: 216g, Sugar: 8g

I’ll have this smoothie within an hour post workout or first thing in the morning if i’m out the door.  It really does provide me with satiety and energy, and not to mention it tastes so good! The Avocado makes it extra creamy, and the cinnamon, chocolate, and Banana are a heavenly combination.