Category Archives: Nutrition
By: Robin Amylon
Ever have one of those days (or if you’re like me maybe a couple hundred) where you just want to stuff your face with a big bowl of Ben & Jerry’s? It’s 8am on a Monday morning and the trains aren’t running because of track work or a police investigation. You can’t catch a cab and it’s pouring out. You get to school or work late, soaked because the wind was so crazy that your umbrella was pretty much useless. Then you get chewed out by your professor or boss for being late and you have a huge exam or meeting you didn’t prepare for. Everything is just a mess and you can’t seem to catch a break. You decide on the way home you deserve a treat to try to brighten up the horrible day you just had. You stop at the store and immediately go to the ice cream section. As you’re reaching for the Ben & Jerry’s “Chocolate Therapy” the Edy’s “No Sugar Added, Triple Chocolate” catches your eye. You compare the nutrition facts on both products and see that the Edy’s ice cream has half the calories and only 1/8 the sugar the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream has. You opt for the Edy’s choice without even giving it a second thought, feeling a little less guilty about cheating on your diet. After your first bite, you are presently surprised to find that the Edy’s ice cream is just as sweet as the Ben & Jerry’s and doesn’t taste that much different from regular ice cream. But how can that be if it only has 1/8 the amount of sugar? You check the nutrition facts again and notice “sucralose” and “sorbitol” in the ingredients list. You Google these names and find they are sugar substitutes. These sugar substitutes, as well as several others, have become quite popular over the past few decades due to the growing obesity epidemic and increasing need for finding alternative ways to satisfy our innate sweet tooth. There has been much controversy and concern in regards to these substances however that question whether or not they are safe to consume. Some argue they are carcinogenic. Others say these substances actually increase appetite and weight. Some even say they can negatively affect behavior and mood and can even be toxic. So did you really make the better choice? Are sugar substitutes really healthier than regular sugar?
By: Robin Amylon
Animal sources of protein have been the main focus of previous articles however I realize that some of you may not eat meat. Many people choose vegetarian diets for religious, philosophical, ecological, ethical and health related reasons. Plant based diets rich in fruits, vegetables, legumes and grains are rich in health-promoting antioxidants, fiber and phytochemicals. Depending on what type of vegetarian you are however could put you at risk for deficiency in certain nutrients if you do not plan your diet carefully. The more animal products excluded from the diet, the greater the risk for deficiency. Vegetarian diets require knowledge and creative planning to ensure adequate protein and other key nutrients without the consumption of animal products. Let’s take a look at the different types of vegetarian diets and what each group can do to ensure all nutrients are consumed while sticking to their chosen meal plan.
By: Robin Amylon
The supplement industry is bigger than ever. Stores like “The Vitamin Shoppe” and “GNC” are everywhere, filled with hundreds of different pills, powders and shakes promising to enhance performance, weight loss, muscle mass or nutritional status. As competitors, athletes are always looking for ways to take their performance to the next level and get on top. Many athletes turn to supplements rather than food because they believe it is a better way to optimize their health and performance. What they don’t know is manufacturers and distributers do not need FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approval to sell their dietary supplements. By law the manufacturer is responsible for ensuring that their products are safe before they are marketed. Unlike drug products that must be proven safe and effective for their intended use before marketing, there are no provisions in the law for the FDA to “approve” dietary supplements for safety or effectiveness before they are put on the market. There is also no law or regulation the FDA enforces that requires a firm to disclose to consumers information about the safety or claimed benefits of their dietary supplement products. Because of this, it is extremely important for athletes to do their homework and be well informed about products before using them.
Congratulations to everyone who signed up and competed in the CrossFit Games Open for the past 5 weeks. Coaches and athletes alike witnessed many PR’s and amazing performances beyond what some of you realized you had in you. We are all so proud of the amount of effort and heart that you all put in to do your best in the largest and most inclusive test to find the Fittest on Earth.
Now that the first stage of the CrossFit Games season is done, the fittest men, women, and teams from each of the 17 regions around the world will move on to the next phase of the competition – Regionals. Here the top 48 men, 48 women, and 30 teams from each region will be competing for their shot to move on. At the end of a three day weekend, no more than three men, three women, and three teams will receive invitations to the 2013 Reebok CrossFit Games.
Your home box, Reebok CrossFit 5th Ave, placed 14th out of 252 teams in the North East region. We will be sending out more information as time gets closer, but please make plans to come cheer everyone May 17th-19th. Regionals is heald at the Reebok Headquarters near Boston. It’s an absolute blast, so please come join us.
By: Robin Amylon
With all the emphasis these days on weight loss and diet foods/pills you would think that the only people who struggle with weight concerns are those who want to lose weight. But what about those who want to gain weight and build muscle mass? What should they be eating in order to achieve their goals? This is a question I usually get from men but can also apply to women who are under weight or have a hard time maintaining their weight. Many people have misconceptions on what they should eat to gain weight. They either consume an excessive amount of protein because they believe it’s the muscle building super nutrient or they eat an excessive amount of crap (ie doughnuts, cookies, ice cream and fried foods) because they are so calorically dense. Neither group is correct however. Yes, you need protein to build muscle, but consuming protein on its own just isn’t going to cut it. And eating excessive amounts of crap will make you gain weight, but not the type of weight gain you’re hoping for. You will mostly gain more fat mass than muscle mass. So what should you do?