Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Some Food For Thought

• If your food has a wrapper or a box, chances are it isn't good for you.

• If your food has ingredients you can't say, chances are it isn't good for you.

• If your food makes a claim that it's healthy, chances are it isn't good for you.

• If your food comes pre-seasoned, chances are it isn't good for you.

• Lastly, if your food makes any claims about fat loss, chances are it isn't good for you.

Monday, July 23, 2007

The Slight Edge [excerpt]

from The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson.

The Slight Edge and Your Health

Tell me what you eat and I will tell you what you are.
- Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

They say "the way to a man's heart is through his stomach." I don't know about that, but I do know this: that is the way to his destiny!
Health is one of the great riddles of existence. The foundational importance of everyday health is one of the most commonly known truths of human existence, and at the same time, it is also one of the most commonly and blatantly ignored. Everyone knows that "if you don't have your health, you have nothing." Our language is brimming over with related figures of speech.:
At least you have your health.
You're only as old as you feel.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Of the three "self-evident, inalienable rights" that ring from the American Declaration of Independence like a trumpet fanfare-"Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness"- the first, without which the other two are irrelevant, is Life. And the most basic condition for the free, unencumbered experience of Life itself is health. There is nothing more basic than health- and there is no area of life where the Slight Edge is more vividly in operation, working either for you or against you.
That is perhaps your most important choice, day by day and hour by hour: whether to let your eating and physical activity build your fondest dreams- or dig your grave with your teeth. Hamlet wondered, "To be, or not to be?" You get to ask yourself that-and answer it-with every meal.

read the introduction to The Slight Edge.

"Buying Organic Without Breaking the Bank"

from Yahoo!:

Buy Organic Without Breaking the Bank

by Kelli B. Grant
Wednesday, July 18, 2007
provided bySmartMoney.com

Organic foods may be healthier for you, but they can have a sickening effect on your wallet.

Produced without pesticides and other chemicals, organic produce, meat and dairy products can cost 50% to 100% more than their conventional counterparts, says Urvashi Rangan, a senior scientist and policy analyst with Consumer Reports' Greener Choices1. Despite those mark-ups, studies touting the health and environmental benefits of organic foods have made them more popular than ever before. More than 70% of consumers have at least one organic product on their shopping list, according to market research firm Hartman Group.

Here are five tips for going organic for less:

Set some priorities

You'll get the most bang for your buck by buying organic apples, beef and spinach. That's because the conventional counterparts to these foods are laden with pesticides and potentially harmful additives (see chart below). Produce like papayas, bananas and broccoli require less pesticide to grow, thereby retaining little to no residue after washing. (The peels on bananas and other tropical fruits further reduce your exposure).

Also, read the label. Seafood, cosmetics and cleaning products can be labeled "organic" without having to face the same requirements that the USDA imposes on vegetables and meat. "There is no system, no real oversight," warns Kimberly Stewart, the author of "Eating Between the Lines: The Supermarket Shopper's Guide to the Truth Behind Food Labels." You'll pay premium prices with no guarantees.

More from SmartMoney.com:

• Stopping Junk Mail is Easy, and Good for the Environment

• The 4-Cylinder Solution

• Weight Loss Web Sites

Consider your alternatives

Prices on organic meats, eggs and dairy products can be some of the most exorbitant. The culprit: A lack of the organic feed for the animals, says Stewart. So if you can't stomach prices for organics, consider antibiotic- or hormone-free foods. While the animals may have eaten regular feed, they meet the other half of organic requirements — no hormones or antibiotics. At online grocer FreshDirect, a half-gallon of Horizon organic milk is $3.99, while the same size Farmland antibiotic-free milk is $2.19.

Organic goes on sale, too

Conventional discount shopping wisdom also applies to organic goods. Grocery stores frequently put organic foods on sale, so keep an eye out for coupons or discounts advertised in their circulars. Shop Rite's July 15-21 circular, for example, touts organic bananas for 69 cents per pound (the same price as conventional ones) and organic Stonyfield Yogurt at 10 for $6.99 (a break of 19 cents each off the usual price of 89 cents).

Also, buy fruits and veggies that are in season. Pricing becomes much more competitive during those times. At Whole Foods, a six-ounce container of raspberries is currently $3.49 whether you go organic or not. Meanwhile, a 16-ounce container of conventional strawberries is $2.99; for organic, just 50 cents more.

Turn to local farmers

Your local farmers' market can be a great place to buy organic food. That's because a combination of seasonality and competition helps keep prices down, says Rangan. At New York's famous Union Square Greenmarket, organic and conventional tomatoes were both recently $1.50 per pound.

Another option: community-supported agriculture programs, or CSAs. For a fee, you'll be supplied with fresh, organic produce on a weekly basis throughout the growing season. Quiet Creek Farm in Kutztown, Pa., for example, charges $600, or roughly $23 per week, for enough produce to feed three to four people. Depending on the week, you might get broccoli, peppers, zucchini, melons, strawberries, herbs or any of the other 40-plus organic items the farm produces. (To find a CSA near you, click here2 or here3.)

Consider generics

Supermarket chain Meijer has Meijer Organics, Giant Eagle has Nature's Basket and Publix has GreenWise Market. Many supermarkets are adding organic lines to their private labels, a move that allows shoppers to buy organic at significant discounts over big-name brands, says Teri Gault, founder of The Grocery Game, a program that helps consumers match manufacturers' coupons with store sales. At Safeway, a 20-ounce bottle of store-brand O Organics ketchup is $2.45, a steal compared with the 15-ounce bottle of Heinz Organic at $3.79. Considering price per ounce, you'll save 49%.

Read original article here.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Update 0715

regarding this Tuesdays Greenlake Workout (@ 6pm) i have but one word for you: "Roadwork"


and speaking of the outdoor workouts, how does Sunday around Noon work for everyone who can't quite make the Tuesday evening workouts?

Let me know!

Friday, July 13, 2007

[article] Processed Sugars

from Paul Chek's website: A Sweet Challenge

A Sweet Challenge
by Rico Caveglia

Almost everyone loves the sweet taste of sugar. With 115 million tons of sugar currently being produced each year it seems we have quite a craving for the sweet stuff. So why do we crave it and why is it now commonly thought to be the food we most need to eliminate?

Why do we crave sugar?
When primitive man found something sweet in nature such as a berry, he quickly learned that it was safe to eat. It is nature’s way of letting us know whether something is edible or not, sweet is good, bitter is not. And of course now we know that most foods that contain sugar in their natural state such as honey and fruits are healthy for us.

We naturally gravitate to something sweet when we are really hungry because sugar digests very quickly and satisfies our hunger very quickly.

Studies have also shown that sugar acts similar to addicting drugs like morphine to produce opioids in the brain. Opioids produce the feelings of pleasure and satisfaction and thus can become addictive.

When food manufacturers figured this out they began producing sugar laden foods, especially foods for children. And of course sweet foods and candies are normally given to children as a treat, or as a reward, or just to quite them down. The result is most people are hooked on sugar when they are just a small child.

What’s wrong with eating sugar?
The average American now eats 158 pounds of sugar every year. If my math is correct that is an extra 800 calories per day from pure sugar, which equates to approximately a weight gain of one pound every 5 days. Wow, no wonder we have an obesity and diabetes epidemic in America.

If you do a search on Google about the harmful effects of eating processed sugars, you will find more than 6 millions links. That I would say, gives us a pretty good idea that sugar and all of the artificial sweeteners may not be so good for us.

In this short article I don’t have room to go into all of the many health problems sugar causes, or the details. I just want to point out a few of the primary problems resulting from excess sugar consumption:

Obesity. Too much sugar in the body can’t be processed or utilized so it gets stored as fat.
Diabetes. Excess sugar in the blood causes too much insulin to be released which eventually leads to hypoglycemia and diabetes.
Poor immune function. Excess sugar depletes vitamins and minerals stores in our bodies thus weakening our immune systems, contributing to degenerative disease.
Sugar also can disrupt our hormonal systems, causing allergies and many other malfunctions.
In addition sugar plantations worldwide have caused widespread destruction by ruining the soil and trees of their surrounding environment.
If you would like more information on the problems related to excess sugar consumption, read Dr. Joseph Mercola’s new book “Sweet Deception”.

What to do?
If you would like to greatly improve your health and energy levels and avoid serious problems in the future, the elimination of most processed sugars in your diet is essential. The best way of course is to eat mostly natural real foods and avoid most processed, packaged foods that contain added sugars. The following are most of the added sugars you want to avoid: white sugar, brown sugar, cane syrup,Sucrose,Glucose,Dextrose,Fructose,Sucanat,Turbinado sugar, Beet sugar, High fructose corn syrup,Maltose,Xylitol,Sorbitol,Mannitol,
Erythritol, Aspartame, Saccharin, Nutrisweet, Splenda,
Cyclamate, Sucralose and Acesulfame-Kneotame.

You basically want to avoid any sweeteners, especially the artificial ones which are made of toxic chemicals and can create a whole list of other problems. Remember most packaged foods contain sweeteners along with other additives that you want to avoid. Learn to read labels; there are many natural food products that do not contain additives and simple sugars.

What’s sweet to eat?
As always get your sweets primarily from natural sources like fruits. Raw honey, pure maple syrup, brown rice syrup, molasses, barley malt, Stevia and Agave are some natural sweeteners that are ok in moderation. It is not however necessary to eat any natural sweeteners as you get plenty of sugar from fruits, starches and grains in your diet.

Other Good Ideas
If you feel you are addicted to sugar, are obese, have diabetes or any serious disease, consult with a qualified health care practitioner such as a naturopathic doctor or nutritionist. They can develop a personalized program of detoxification and proper diet. The program in the book “Lick the Sugar Habit” by Nancy Appleton can also be very helpful for most people.

If you have school children organize your local PTA to get candy, sodas and all junk foods out of your school. Sugar overload is a major contributor to Attention Deficit Disorder and hyper activity among children. It’s our responsibility to take care of our health and of the health of our children, so take action and just say no to sugary processed foods.

It’s also important to be aware that everything that shows up in our physical body begins in our mental/emotional body. If you are addicted to sweets perhaps you aren’t allowing enough sweetness and love to come into your life from others. Take classes, read books or get some counseling on how to love yourself, love your life and create more fun and joy in your life.


Read more.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Update 070707

don't forget! every tuesday @ 6pm at the north end of Greenlake! Free group workouts! bring friends! and be ready to sweat!

new workout to try (a Filthy Fifties modification)

Dirty Thirty: Vaughn

KB Swings (1 pood)
Box Jumps @ 24"
Military Press @ 30#
Military Press @ 30#
Box Jumps @ 24#
KB Swings (1 pood)