Tag Archives: nutrition

Sugars and Added Sugars

So what is the difference between sugar and added sugar? I’ve noticed food labels giving total sugar and added sugar listings lately and wondered what was up with that. According to the government site, fda.gov, manufacturers had until January 1, 2020 to switch to the new label outlining sugars and added sugars. Smaller manufacturers have until January 1, 2021 to comply so you may not see it on all labels.

You will see a listing now of “Total Sugars” with a gram count and under it will say “includes [number]g Added Sugars” under it. In addition to these changes, the calories are in larger type and serving sizes are updated. This has been in the works since May 2016.

The old label was over 20 years old. Products such as honey and syrup will most likely not have “added sugars” per se, but you will see an added percentage of a daily total one serving is. Vitamin D will be added to the label but Vitamins A and C are not required to be on the labels any longer. Servings sizes may look different as well. For instance, if ice cream serving was previously 1/2 cup, it may show 1 cup now but the calories will reflect that change as well per serving.

FDA.gov
Comparison of labels side by side

P90X® Workout

P90X® workout uses the science of muscle confusion. By changing your workout over 90 days, it changes your body. This allows your body to adapt and grow and not reach that plateau you so dread. Short training cycles with various intensities is what helps make it effective.

Along with the workout is the nutrition plan. They have a three-phase nutrition plan to complement your workout with the correct amount of calories and the right nutrients. Phase 1 is used to shred fat quickly. Phase 2 is an energy booster. Phase 3 is endurance maximization with complex carbohydrates and lean proteins.

Of course all this isn’t free! When you sign up for the base kit ($39.95 + $19.95 shipping and handling for 3 months), you get 12 workouts (dvd), fitness guide, the nutrition plan, calendar to track progress, 24/7 support. The Deluxe package adds a chin-up bar, resistance bands, and recovery supplement.

Find out more.

I Tried an Artichoke

Artichoke
I was in the mood to try something new. Something I’d seen but didn’t know the first thing about. First thing I did was a search to find out how to even treat this weird vegetable. I found out quite a few things about them. First of all they are the bud of a thistle. And there isn’t much on it that are edible. One website I found that was very helpful is SimplyRecipes.com.

I found that they can be boiled, grilled, braised, steamed, stuffed and baked. I chose to try to steam them. I let them steam for about half an hour after cleaning and trimming them. Apparently the leaves of them are not fully edible. You can dip them then scrape them across your teeth to take off the edible part. Once you get to the middle, you can eat the heart of it that is under a hairy, fuzzy part. I used a dip recommended in the SimplyRecipes.com site – mayonnaise mixed with a little balsamic vinegar.

Would I make them again? Probably not. I was not a fan. They may be good cooked with other things. I may try a can of artichoke hearts and put them in with other things but I don’t think I would eat them alone. Here is more about the nutrition of artichokes.

Daily Habits

We came across this article with some tips for weight loss. Many have been told before and they will likely be out there again because they just make sense. Here are the tips:

1. Eat protein for breakfast. Protein can help fend off cravings and make you feel full.
2. Drink water. Start your day off with a glass or two of water and continue to drink it through the day.
3. Weigh yourself daily. Seeing the numbers can motivate you or help you with restraint throughout the day.
4. Get some sun. Vitamin D is important and it can boost your mood.
5. Stay aware and focused. Don’t eat when you are bored or just unmindfully.
6. Try to get some exercise. It is better to get it in the morning.
7. Bring your lunch to work. Eating out and add many more calories than you need.
8. Sleep longer. Try to get at least 7 1/2 hours of sleep minimum.
9. Change the way you get to work. Use your bike, walk, or public transportation if you can.
10. Track what you eat. There are many ways to keep a food diary.

A few small changes can go a long way.

Watermelon, Watermelon, Watermelon

Today we want to explore watermelon. This is a seasonal fruit we are finding in our grocery stores this time of year. Most people just buy it, slice it, and eat it. But let’s see what else we can do with it. There is actually a website devoted to it: www.watermelon.org. The Victor crew came across some interesting Pinterest images of some things you can do with watermelon. You can find anything from watermelon lemonade to a watermelon cake. Some people make different melons into balls (or other shapes) and put it back into the hollowed out watermelon rind.

Maybe you’ve received emails or seen some elaborate carvings made from watermelon. The carvings on the watermelon site are more simple. There are many more elaborate carvings using the watermelon as a blank canvas.

What kind of nutrition does watermelon have? We searched for it and found the FDA Nutrition Facts label. There really isn’t a whole lot to it. Two cups of watermelon cubes are only 80 calories. Doing a quick calculation, 77 of the calories come from the 20 grams of sugar. There is also 1 gram fiber, 270 mg of Potassium, 1 gram protein, 30% of daily Vitamin A, 25% of daily Vitamin C, 2% calcium, and 4% iron. Even though there is not a whole lot there, you get something that is filling and satisfying.

To find the perfect watermelon, look for one that is free of bruises, cuts, or dents. Pick it up … it should be heavy. 92% of its weight is water. The underside should have a creamy yellow spot from ripening.

Steve Victor

p.s. Why the three Watermelons in the title? It is said if you are in a choir and forget the words, say watermelon over and over again to yourself (lip sync) and no one will be the wiser!