July 23, 2014

Give yourself a break!

Filed under: Uncategorized — JBNUT @ 9:53 am

All true stories…

A client told me he was mad at himself for pressing snooze at 4.30am (4.30am!!!) and got to the pool at 6.30am instead of his usual 6.00am.

A client was frustrated with herself for having two glasses of champagne instead of one at her 20th wedding anniversary dinner. 

Another client is planning the most fantastic trip abroad, but is so worried about gaining weight on holiday that she doesn’t want to go. 

A bride to be is worried that the food is going to be too good at her wedding and she may gain weight over her wedding weekend. 

This all breaks my heart. Truly breaks my heart. Life is too precious to be beating ourselves up like this. Can we just give ourselves a break?

Being good to yourself will lower stress and you will feel better when you are not being so hard on yourself. However, “giving yourself a break” does not mean stop working out and start eating whatever you want…often when we are “being good to ourselves” we pick up really damaging behaviors and habits.

Eating healthily, being mindful, staying active, taking care of ourselves and being consistent is just life. It just is. However, life happens! And it is crazy out there sometimes. Things go wrong, things go really great, there are hilarious moments, joyous celebrations and dark times. Life happens.

You press the snooze on your alarm clock, have that second glass of wine, enjoy the piece of cake and then move on. Enjoy it, be present with it, embrace the moment and then move on.

Being so hard on yourself is not helping anything. It takes the fun out of the high moments and makes the low moments really low…

Next time you are about to really beat yourself up, take a moment, take a breath and give yourself a break. Day by day..step by step.

Want to chat about making nutrition work for you? Click here and lets talk.

July 16, 2014

Thrive All Day

Filed under: Uncategorized — JBNUT @ 9:15 am

We all have unique preferences, motivators, stressors and pet peeves.

Some of you enjoy waking up at 5am to workout while others go for runs at 10pm.

Some of you crave chocolate and ice cream, while others crave potato chips.

Some of you need bourbon at night, some of you need espresso in the morning.

Some of you can eat the same thing everyday while others need to mix it up.

Some of you need a specific goal to stay motivated, while others get stressed out with a goal.

We all have our “shticks” – yiddish for themes or gimmicks. We all have our unique bag of shitcks that make us who we are. They can hold us back as well as motivate us to improve. Regardless, they are there and it is essential to know your shticks and how to get them to work in your favor, rather than your detriment.

When you take the time to know who you really are, you thrive.

Do you know a characteristic about yourself that is holding you back? Preventing you from reaching your goal?

Know yourself, embrace your shticks and thrive.

July 8, 2014

Snack Right – Lose Weight

Filed under: Uncategorized — JBNUT @ 4:00 pm

Last week, there was a great article in the Wall Street Journal highlighting how the snack industry has taken over how we eat – “according to a 2013 survey, 48% of Americans skipped meals at least three times a week, and 63% decided what to consume less than an hour before eating.

So? To Snack or not to snack? Here are the pros and cons of snacking

PRO: Life is busy and you must make it work for you! There are a lot of great snacks out there – find pre-packaged food that is real food – and works for you. There are now pouches of high quality cooked proteins available that you can keep in your fridge ready to go. Vacuum packed cooked lentils that you can make into a quick salad. Yogurt, string cheese, nuts, cut up veggies, fruit, whole grain crackers…have these foods available and ready to go so you can eat on the fly!

CON: READ THE INGREDIENTS – whole, real foods only. You would be amazed at how much junk is in packaged foods. Nuts and nut butters should be made of nuts – no added sugar, salt, oils and chemicals. Kale chips should be made of kale, a little oil and some salt. Dried fruit should be made of fruit only. Yogurt is made of milk. Bars should be made of whole read foods and not chemicals and weird powders. Soups and pre made meals should be made of the vegetables, grains and protein – cut out the junk!

PRO: There is no set research that you must eat 3 meals a day – small, frequent balanced meals throughout the day is what the body usually likes. So smaller than a meal…maybe a snack size…every 3-4 hours. Each time you eat there is a protein, carbohydrate and fat present.Please remember -GRAZING IS DIFFERENT THAN SMALL FREQUENT MINI MEALS. Grazing means you munch on food all day long..similar to a cow grazing on grass. You still want to wait 3-4 hours between eating. Leave the grazing for the cows…that is not exactly the body type most of us are going for.

CON: Often times snack foods are not satiating. You can easily eat 400-600 calories of snack food and still want more. If you eat really bland food all the time, you are likely going to get bored and then overeat on something sugary and fatty – be sure you are eating foods that satiate you physically and mentally. Add spice, eat something crunchy, add textures and get protein and fat in there to fill you up.

PRO: Use snacks to your advantage. If there is one time of day that is always tricky – you are in meetings, sitting in traffic, headed out the door – find the snack that works to set you up for success.

CON: If you do not have a plan, you are likely going to make a bad decision. It is very difficult to expect that the foods you want are always going to be available so for the 63% of you who do not plan more than an hour ahead, I can GUARANTEE if you took just a bit of thought into your day, you would likely improve your nutrition, weight, health and energy.

So what do you think? To snack or not to snack?

Want to chat? Email me and lets discuss how to make nutrition work for you.

July 2, 2014

Stressed Out and Living Longer

Filed under: Uncategorized — JBNUT @ 9:26 am

We talk a lot about stress. How stressed we are, how stress is such a problem, how if life were less stressful things would be better…stress is major player in our lives.

Often when clients are trying to create a nutrition or exercise plan that is intended to make them healthier, they often feel very stressed by the process. Ironic right? You are trying to do something to make life better, but it only causes more difficulty.

What if stress was not a bad thing? What if stress was not harmful to our health? What if we embraced it rather than trying to fight it? I am loving (slightly obsessed, actually) this TED talk by Kelly McGonigal. She highlights different research that suggests that when you “make stress your friend” you can live a long, healthy life.

One study found, “people who experienced a lot of stress but did not view stress as harmful, were no more likely to die. In fact, they had the lowest risk of dying of anyone in the study, including people who had relatively little stress.”

McGonigal states that the science suggests “when you change your mind about stress, you can change your body’s response to stress. What is found is that those who are the most stressed did not die earlier, it is the ones who do not acknowledge that they are stressed that drop sooner.” 

It is really stressful to put on a happy face and keep saying “I am fine” “Everything is great” “All is going well” – can you relate?!? I know I can. I used to think that if I just didn’t pay attention to the stress and focused on the positive it would help, but the truth is it made it all worse. There is that irony again. The more honest I was and just admitted, “I am really stressed!!!” the less stressed I was. It feels pretty fantastic!

Think about how this applies to food and exercise….you are stressed about your weight, health, nutrition and exercise and do not know what to do about it. You feel like you are spinning and do not know how to get a grip on it. You keep telling yourself (and others) that “ it is going to be okay” and “starting Monday you will get control on your diet” and “once this really busy time at work ends you will start working out again” but the truth is IT NEVER HAPPENS.

Another study McGonigal highlights in her talk is about the benefits of a stress hormone called oxytocin. A study she discusses found that  “this stress hormone strengthens your heart, and the cool thing is that all of these physical benefits of oxytocin are enhanced by social contact and social support, so when you reach out to others under stress, either to seek support or to help someone else, you release more of this hormone, your stress response becomes healthier, and you actually recover faster from stress.

What if you just admitted, “this sucks” or “this is really difficult and I need help” - can you ask for help? Can you start slow? One small step to get you in the right direction? It makes all the difference.

We are all stressed these days. We live in a stressful world. Whether you live in the country or city, rich or broke, happy or sad, healthy or sick….there are a lot of stressful things going on and it is easy to get sucked in.

I do not think any of the stress is going away…so lets just accept it as is, embrace it and use it to our benefit. Ask for your help in your journey. Continue moving forward to take of ourselves, eat right and be well.

Need some support embracing the stress in your life? Email me and lets chat. 

June 18, 2014

Workout Less – Achieve More. Yes?

Filed under: Uncategorized — JBNUT @ 2:14 pm

Oh I adore my clients, but (you knew a “but” was coming), many of you are “work hard, play hard”folks. You give everything 100% and anything less than that is not worth doing. It is a beautiful trait and watching your intensity, commitment, willpower and work ethic is inspiring. However, that “more is better” approach may be adding unwanted stress to your body that could actually be preventing you from achieving the results you want.

Some new research is suggesting that those who participate in too much high intensity exercise may actually be at a greater risk of dying of heart disease. Shame isn’t it? You push yourself so hard at the gym, sweat flinging, show up at the break of dawn to workout and it may actually be seriously hurting you.

One study suggests that while the least physically active individuals were at an increased risk of heart problems and earlier death, the most active group – those who did daily strenuous physical activity – also had an increased risk of dying of heart disease.

second study found participants who worked out for more than 5 hours of a week of strenuous exercise were 20% likelier to have developed an irregular heartbeat by the age of 60 than those who exercised less than an hour a week. 

It seems maximum cardiovascular benefits are found with “moderate” exercise rather than “very high intensity and prolonged” exercise.

Well jeez…what the heck are we supposed to do now? Many of you are giggling right now, thinking I just let you off the hook from exercising. Others are quite frustrated because you go out of your way to be consistent and diligent about your workouts and they may be hurting you.

You will not be surprised when I write that I do not know the correct answer here. However, it seems clear that “work hard, play hard” may not be the best for long term heart health. That stress does a number on the system and many of us are paying a steep price for it and we don’t even know it. 

Can you do high intensity workouts less often? Can you incorporate more moderate exercise into your life? Maybe it is time to get that heart rate monitor to see just how hard you are working and assess what are some appropriate ranges. Consider going hard 1-2 days a week and find moderate exercise the other days.

More may not better…but doing nothing is not the solution either. I think the work is finding that sweet spot in the middle…finding some balance in moderation. Not quite as sexy as “work hard, play hard” but may lead to happier, healthier life…that sounds pretty good to me!

Are you more confused? Have some questions? Email me and lets chat on how to make nutrition and exercise work for you.

June 11, 2014

Bourbon, Bordeaux and Beer…

Filed under: Uncategorized — JBNUT @ 1:33 pm

Many of you know I work at Stanford conducting nutrition research for a very large weight loss clinical trial. Participants show up on the first day of class and are told if they are going to be following a low carb or low fat diet for the next year….and after they find out what diet they are on, the first question seems to be “can we drink alcohol?”

I joke with all my clients that I am also a quasi AA counselor in addition to being a dietitian, since alcohol seems to be the main habit that is so difficult for many to break when it comes to weight loss and behavior change. My clients are not addicts, they just love their cocktail and don’t want to give it up. 

I get it…trust me! Bourbon on the rocks with an orange twist is a beautiful thing….I am a big fan. That being said, for many of you, the calories from alcohol are the thing that is holding you back from getting those pounds off. 

I have yet to tell anyone to stop drinking, but I guarantee you all could drink less. 

So here are my booze rules

  1. Take a good, honest look at your weekly routine and figure out how many servings of alcohol you are drinking in a week. One serving is 5 ounces of wine, 1.5 ounce of hard alcohol or 12 ounces of beer.
  2. Then, once you have that number, negotiate with yourself with what you want to set as your new number. So if you have 10 drinks a week, could it be 6? If you have 6, could it be 4?
  3. Then decide if you want to manage how many nights you drink a week OR how many drinks you have per night. Some of you really want to drink every night to wind down after your day and are okay with only one drink. Some of you find having only one drink a waste a time and are willing to only drink on weekends. Everyone is different, make it work it work for you.

Once you have a plan, email me. “I am committing to 5 drinks a week, only on the weekends” or “I am committing to 6 drinks a week and I will have them how I want” – go get em! As long as it is less than what you are currently doing, I am cool with it.

Have a good summer! I swear you can enjoy yourself with a little less booze in the system. Honest!

June 1, 2014

29% of the world is overweight? The time for change is NOW

Filed under: Uncategorized — JBNUT @ 9:03 pm

new study, funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, announced that 29% of the world’s population is overweight or obese. This is not acceptable! We have to make a change.

Are you overweight? Do you know someone who is overweight? Do you have a lab result that is scaring you…and losing weight could help? Or do you have a loved one in that situation? It is time to make a change…to live healthier…to get well…

This epidemic is affecting all of us. While the study found that two out of three of the obese live in developing countries, it also found “there is a strong link between increased income and obesity - as people get richer, their waist lines also tend to start bulging,” according to Christopher Murray, who led the investigation.

We can all do something. NOW.

  1. Start moving - are you in an exercise routine? Is your overweight loved one moving regularly? Start with walking for 5 minutes a day. That is it. And for those of you who are already in a good routine, can you change it up a bit to challenge yourself?
  2. Eat vegetables!! While no one knows exactly what is the best diet for weight loss, we all can agree that vegetables are a large part of the mix. Full of nutrients, packed with fiber and barely any calories – cook em, eat em raw…I dont care…just eat them.
  3. Go to the doctor. When was the last time you went for an annual physical? Do you know your cholesterol panel, blood glucose and blood pressure values? This is a must. Make an appt…and for the loved one who has not gone to the doctor in years…make an appointment for them. Be a proactive patient!
  4. Drink water. A large part of our weight crisis is we drink too many of our calories. We add sugar to our coffee, drinks sodas and juices, drink too much alcohol – be sure you are hydrating with the old school basic….water. Drink up buttercup.
  5. Get rid of the JUNK….please! Know what you are eating…look at the ingredients and make sure you can understand what you are putting in your body. If it did not come from the earth, or have a mother….get it out of your diet. Whole, real foods.

ASK FOR HELP! Please! Weight loss is so difficult and requires a village. Ask friends, family, health professionals, ME…anyone. Ask for help in taking that first step forward.

I may not be able to singlehandedly change the world, but I do believe if we all take a baby step in the right direction it will have a profound affect.

Dream big!

May 20, 2014

Get Consistent at Being Consistent

Filed under: Uncategorized — JBNUT @ 6:39 pm

A wise coach of mine always talks about consistency…no matter if you are injured, tired, in a funk, good day, bad day, busy, bored..whatever…just stay consistent with exercise.

Smart words and really applies to everything – in particular health habits, such as nutrition, exercise, hydration, sleep and stress management. We all want it NOW, see results NOW and make it all be perfect straight away…but that is not usually how things play out. And the more you force it, the more difficult it is to create the habit.

Instead of trying to take on everything all at once…what if you took baby steps and focused on staying consistent?

I talk a lot about meal timing – eating every 3- 4 hours and pairing a protein and a carbohydrate at each meal to keep you satiated and fueled. Say you set a goal to do this Monday – Friday and stay on a set plan…

In order to make that happen you have to:

  1. Cook in bulk so you have food ready to go…
  2. Know spots near your home and office where you can pick foods up that will work for you
  3. Remind yourself to eat! No matter how crazy the day
  4. Always be thinking 3-4 hours ahead…when you go buy lunch, you may need to buy your afternoon snack!

So you start this with a goal of meal planning 5 days a week and you succeed in planning 3 days, the next week 2 days, the week after 4 days, the week after 5 days, then 2, then 5, then 4, then 5….see where I am going with this? LIFE HAPPENS! Crazy days, things go out of control, drama exists…continue to stay consistent with your goals. The more consistent you are with being consistent, the more likely your goals will be achieved and created into a lifestyle habit.

What is one goal you want to work on? Drink more water? Meal timing? Getting to the gym? Eating more vegetables? Running? Cooking? CHOOSE ONE THING…ONE THING… and work on staying consistent with that one habit. 

One step in front of the other…it is amazing how simple it can be…and how good it feels!

You got this…

May 14, 2014

Late Night Bowls of Cereal…

Filed under: Uncategorized — JBNUT @ 8:20 am

When meeting with an athlete, one of the first questions I ask them is if they have a late night snack…the answer is almost always yes. Good news – most athletes need a late night snack since their metabolism is so fast they need to keep fueling. The next question is, what are they eating late night….and the answer is almost always cereal. I ask the athlete how many bowls and it is often 1, 2, 3 or sometimes it is easily the whole box!

Any of you known to munch on cereal before going to bed? Or a few too many pieces of fruit? Sweets? What is your favorite late night snack? There is nothing wrong with cereal (it is a wonderful food!), but it is all starch and when someone, an athlete, or anyone really, munches on too much carbohydrates late at night it is usually a sign that they are not eating protein during the day.

Seems odd right…if you need protein, why are you craving carbs? Well, remember carbs are the food of choice when you are starving in the desert….you NEED cabrs to live and thrive…so at the end of the day if the body thinks it is in trouble it will always go to glucose ie carbohydrates. 

So…what to do? Plan your day better! And get those small, balanced meals in throughout the day so your body does not over-stress and therefore, does not have insane cravings for sugar late at night.

Here are some protein source ideas that work on the go. REMEMBER – eat a protein AND a carb together. Balanced, small meals every 3-4 hours.

Yogurt - check the grams of protein (get at least 10g) and look at the ingredients. While yogurt has sugar in it since all dairy is made of the sugar lactose, there is no need for added sugar. So yes, I am encouraging you to eat plain yogurt – the horror!

Jerky - I recently started working with KRAVE Jerky. Slightly obsessed with how tasty it is! And not tough like normal jerky….and based out of Sonoma…and uses high quality source ingredients. All jerky will have some sugar – as it would taste pretty terrible without – but the amount is minimal and they use legit ingredients. Great for on the go. And clearly a winner for athletes considering Meb Keflezighi, winner of the 2014 Boston Marathon is one of their athletes!

Salmon and Sardines - You were not expecting that one! I just recently learned about Vital Choice and bought a bunch of their sardines and salmon (in non BPA packaging thank you) and it is great on the go. Just please don’t be that guy that opens up a thing of fish on an airplane…

Quinoa and Lentil Salads - Quinoa and lentils are a fantastic sources of plant protein and I seem to notice salads everywhere these days. Or make one at home filled with veggies and you are good to go.

Leftovers! Never ever doubt the power of leftovers. Throw  dinner in a small to go container and you can have it on the go at work the next day.

Eggs - Ah I love eggs. Hard boiled, scrambled, egg sandwich, kale egg cups, baked eggs, microwave eggs – go get em! Great source of protein to balance out a meal.

When you start eating consistently throughout the day and pairing protein with carbohydrates your world is going to be rocked! No more sugar cravings, better energy, fat loss. Sounds like a good place to be!

And you will save money on cereal…

April 22, 2014

Do you suffer from FLC syndrome?

Filed under: Uncategorized — JBNUT @ 7:03 pm

Last week, on The Today Show, Dr Mark Hyman was part of a segment about elimination diets and said that”most of us are eating hyper-processed, hyper-palatable addictive foods that are full of inflammatory triggers” which lead so many people to suffer from FLC syndrome - “Feel Like Crap” Syndrome.

He says “many people suffer from chronic symptoms that are really unnecessary and are connected to what they eat.” Can you relate? Do you FLC?

It saddens and infuriates me when I think about how many people are walking around this world, spending their days, feeling terrible and…food….something as simple as FOOD….could be all that is needed to turn things around.

I have mentioned this concept before, and I will continue bringing it up until we all feel great.

All of us need to pay attention to what we eat and notice how food affects our health, wellness and mood.

Some of us actually need to cut out several foods out of our diet in order to get through the day - that is how sensitive some of our systems are.

Many of us may just need to cut one thing out and notice a dramatic difference.

ALL of us can cut out the junk. The processed foods, the chemicals, the weird ingredients, the food that makes us FLC.

Can you imagine how great it would feel to feel…great? Do you even know what that could feel like? Clear minds, beautiful skin, healthy weight, high energy, good sleep…how phenomenal would that feel?

So, what is your FLMB diet – Feel Like a Million Bucks Diet??? (just made that one up…still working on it)

« Newer PostsOlder Posts »

EMAIL JAE        415.690.7141