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Thursday, May 3, 2012

Crank up your metabolism (Part 2) by eating!

How would you like to have your cake and eat it too? Have you ever seen a slender girl scarfing down a big bowl of pasta and wondered how she stayed so small?? Genetics?...yes, they do play a role, but you do have the power to overcome bad genes. Simple changes and we will have your metabolism soaring.
  1. Increase Water
    • Water is a universal solvent. The body needs water to rid toxins and process nutrients. Dehydration puts your body on reserve by slowing down your metabolism. A small study suggested that those who drank water had an increase in metabolic rate (1)
    • Recommendations: 2.7 L for a female and 3.7 L for a male (IOM)
  2. Small frequent meals
    • I know you have heard it. Training your body to eat every few hours is key to maintaining a working metabolic rate. Do not go more than 3 hours without eating.
    • In the morning I have oatmeal with fat free milk followed by some almonds a couple of hours later. Then comes lunch. For a midafternoon snack I will have some more oatmeal, popcorn, fruit with peanut butter or soy beans. Lastly, dinner and maybe a small bowl of cereal or greek yogurt for dessert. 
  3. Focus on protein
    • Breaking down protein into amino acids makes the body work hard-->burning more calories. Choose lean protein like chicken, turkey, fish, egg whites, low-fat dairy products and soy! Love, love soy beans-high in protein/low in calories and my favorite post work out drink is low-fat chocolate milk! 
    • Recommendations: 0.8-1.0 grams of protein * your body weight in kilograms
      • 124lbs/2.2= 56 kg. 56*0.8= 45 grams of protein. 56*1.0=56 grams of protein. Daily range 45-56 grams of protein per day!
      • Athletes 1.0-1.2 g per kg of body weight (Eatright) Supplementation may not be necessary due to the fact that you can consume enough protein through diet alone.
  4.  Eat more complex carbohydrates.
    • Consuming simple sugars like refined white breads, pastas and rice causes an increase in the production of insulin. This hormone is produced by the pancreas and is in charge of getting glucose (sugar) into the cells (where energy is created!). Once the cells are full the insulin takes the left over glucose (sugar) and stores it guessed it....Fat! Choose from these Complex carbohydrates which do not cause such a large spike in insulin production.
    • broccoli, caluiflower, carrots, brussel sprouts, mushrooms, zucchini, summer squash, peppers, beets, cabbage, celery, greens, eggplant, pea pods, okra, onion, cucumbers
How do the Huggins shape up? Well, we do better with water if we buy bottled water-easier accessibility I guess. I have to put a cup or bottle on my desk to remind me. At each nursing unit we have a water dispenser; I try to stop by every hour and down about 4-8 oz. Another tip I learned at a conference I recently attended was to put the water bottle right by the t.v. and during each commercial get up and drink!

Brian does most-well- all of the cooking and is very good about adding some sort of vegetable. We love buying fresh zucchini, cucumber, green beans and the occasional head of broccoli. He is getting good at building a balanced plate-now we must work on proper portions. Durn him for being such a good cook!

Combine these eating habits with your strength training and that occasional "cheat day" won't phase your body at all!!

      Continue reading as I continue my mission: Healthy Huggins!

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