Archive for July, 2010|Monthly archive page

Unhealthiest Kids Meals

#10, Kiddie Cheeseburger meal

Calories: 1,060
Saturated fat (g): 19
Sodium (mg): 1,120
Carbohydrates (g): 112

#9, Cheeseburger meal with kids French fries, small root beer

Calories: 990
Saturated fat (g): 12
Sodium (mg): 1,580
Carbohydrates (g): 141


#8, Hot Dog meal with small French fries and small Pepsi

Calories: 991
Saturated fat (g): 12
Sodium (mg): 1,465
Carbohydrates (g): 150


#7, Bean and Cheese Burrito meal

Calories: 1,020
Saturated fat (g): 15
Sodium (mg): 1,580
Carbohydrates (g): 131

#6, Cheese Quesadilla meal

Calories: 1,020
Saturated fat (g): 20
Sodium (mg): 1,450
Carbohydrates (g): 125

#5, Grilled Cheese meal with French fries

Calories: 1,020
Saturated fat (g): 17
Sodium (mg): 2,170
Carbohydrates (g): 105


#4, Kookaburra Chicken Fingers meal with Aussie Fries  

Outback Steakhouse
Calories: 1,030
Saturated fat (g): 21
Sodium (mg): 2,052
Carbohydrates (g): 90



#3, Flour Flautas meal

Calories: 1,240
Saturated fat (g): 29
Sodium (mg): 1,980
Carbohydrates (g): 125

#2, Chicken Fingers meal with mashed potatoes, ice cream

Calories: 1,293
Saturated fat (g): 36
Sodium (mg): 2,032
Carbohydrates (g): 110

#1, Mac & Cheese Quesadilla meal with Friendly Frank, Shirley Temple and Friend-z Peanut Butter Cup

Calories: 2,270
Saturated fat (g): 45
Sodium (mg): 3,320
Carbohydrates (g): 263


Chicken Producers Debate ‘Natural’ Label

SAN FRANCISCO — A disagreement among poultry producers about whether chicken injected with salt, water and other ingredients can be promoted as “natural” has prompted federal officials to consider changing labeling guidelines.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture had maintained that if chicken wasn’t flavored artificially or preserved with chemicals, it could carry the word “natural” on the package.

But the agency agreed to take another look at its policy after some producers, politicians and health advocates noted that about one-third of chicken sold in the U.S. was injected with additives that could represent up to 15 percent of the meat’s weight, doubling or tripling its sodium content. Some argue that could mislead or potentially harm consumers who must limit their salt intake.

The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service plans to issue new proposed rules this fall.

Perdue, the nation’s third largest poultry producer, is among those pushing for a change. The company has joined a group called the Truthful Labeling Coalition, which has hired a lobbyist and launched an advertising campaign.

“Our labels say natural or all natural only if there is nothing added,” Perdue spokesman Luis Luna said. “Under no circumstances is it acceptable to label poultry that has been enhanced with water or broth or solutions as natural, or all natural.”

Such mixtures are injected into poultry to make the meat tastier and more tender.

The two largest chicken processors, Pilgrim’s Pride and Tyson Foods, are among those that affix “natural” labels to chicken injected with extra salt and water. Industry experts said the practice has become more common in the past decade.

Tyson spokesman Gary Mickelson said the company sponsored a national study that found most consumer didn’t mind those labels if the ingredients added were deemed natural.

Gary Rhodes, a spokesman for Pilgrim’s Pride, said the company simply wanted to offer its customers a choice.

“We offer both 100 percent natural enhanced and non-enhanced fresh chicken,” Rhodes said. “It really depends on what the customer wants. It’s all about choice.”

But Bill Mattos, president of the California Poultry Federation, argued that current labeling rules leave consumers confused. He said the industry needs to work harder at being clear about its products.

“With all the talk about food now, all the interest in salt, the chicken industry needs to be very upfront about these issues, and be very truthful,” said Mattos.

A buyer perusing the chicken counter at a San Francisco supermarket agreed.

Muembo Muanza, 30, said he read the label and considered the price but never thought to check the salt content when buying fresh chicken.

Most people buying fresh, unprocessed food will assume, like he did, that nothing is added, said Muanza, whose family has a history of high blood pressure, a condition that can be worsened by high salt intake.

“If it says natural, I expect it to be all natural – nothing but chicken,” he said.

California Sen. Barbara Boxer weighed in on the issue earlier this year, calling in a press conference for the USDA to “immediately prevent sodium injected chicken from using the ‘natural’ label and require all poultry producers to identify added ingredients in print large enough to ensure that consumers can make informed choices.”

The issue is worrisome because Americans generally eat far too much salt, with serious health consequences, said Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, a researcher at the University of California, San Francisco.

Her research, published this year in the New England Journal of Medicine, found that regulations aimed at cutting back Americans’ sodium intake could save $10 billion to $24 billion in health care costs, and thousands of lives, every year.

Government intervention is needed, Bibbins-Domingo said, because much of the salt people eat comes in prepared food, not out of a salt shaker.

“We have to educate people to read labels and make better choices,” she said. “When there are foods that people consider to be fresh and without additives, and they also have salt added, you feel you are almost fighting a losing battle.”

In a report issued this year, the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, which advises the federal government, revised the recommended daily salt intake from a teaspoon a day to about two-thirds of a teaspoon. It pointed to meat with added salt as a particular problem.

Foster Farms, based in Livingston, Calif., has been at the forefront of the campaign to change labeling rules.

The company sells marinated products that have added salt – but it is clear to consumers, said company spokesman Ira Brill. The problem with injection is the customer can’t tell what’s in their chicken.

“One of the issues we face as a nation is how to eat healthy,” Brill said. “To the degree you like salt, you should be able to add it. But you should be able to make that decision for yourself. ”

By Juliana Barbassa, The Associated Press

Merry Eating vs. Mindful Eating

There are two different types of eating, merry and mindful.  When you eat merrily, you are eating for the satisfaction you receive from the physical act of eating.  You may not be paying attention to what or how much you are eating either.  Your eating has become a routine and little attention is given to it.  When there is food in front of you, your instant reaction is to eat it, much like a Labrador scrambles to gobble up that morsel of food that has fallen off the kitchen counter and onto the floor.

Do you do any of the following?

  • Multitasking while you eat (watching TV, driving, talking on the phone).
  • “Grazing”.
  • Skipping meals and then doubling up later.
  • Disregarding hunger cues (stomach pains, low energy, irritability).
  • Eating until stuffed instead of satiated.
  • “Clean Plate Club” member.
  • Not paying attention to nutritional needs.
  • Believe you lack control.
  • Shoulds and Shouldn’ts dominate your eating patterns.

On the other hand, mindful eating is always being aware and attentive to your body and eating patterns.  You are always aware of the impact the foods you put in your body will have.  Some examples of mindful eating include:

  • Non-judgmental of yourself and food choices.
  • Very in touch with the moment as you eat.
  • Focused attention.
  • Stop eating before that stuffed feeling approaches.
  • Food is food.  There is no good food or bad food.  You make your decisions based upon the nutritional knowledge you posses.
  • Recognizing pre and post eating thoughts and emotions.
  • Enjoy meals with family and friends.  Meals aren’t a chore, but something you enjoy and approach leisurely.

If you fall into the first category, don’t fret.  Just study what a mindful eater does and slowly incorporate that way of thinking and living in your every day routine.

Jumping the Weight Off

jump rope workouts cardioJump Rope is an awesome form of exercise. It offers an excellent form of cardiovascular training as well as full body strength training, resulting in fat loss and muscle growth for a nice healthy sculpted body. What’s more is, it is cheap, easily transportable, is easy to do and can be done anywhere! I typically like to create HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) workouts using the jump rope; combining jump rope intervals with strength training moves to ensure a full body blast in minimal time. These workouts provide clients with an intense full body routine that is portable and efficient.

What Type of Jump Rope is Recommended?
I recommend getting a “speed rope”. They cost about $10 and are available at any sporting goods store or mega store like Wal-Mart or Target. The speed rope is a plastic rope without the beads. It is preferable to get an adjustable jump rope to ensure you don’t hit the top of your head as you jump; also you want to be sure the rope is not too long or it will prevent you from jumping at a fast speed! The un-weighted jump rope is also preferable.

Practice Makes Perfect:
Many people that attempt to jump rope, get frustrated, and quickly find alternative conditioning tools. Do not allow your frustration to interfere with your development as an athlete! Remember practice makes perfect – so if you are new to the jump rope start out slow, practice for a few weeks and before you know it- you will have mastered this amazing exercise!

Looking to try something new? Here is a great HIIT workout using the Jump Rope for you to try. The entire workout should take you about 45 minutes to complete. Please be sure to check with a physician before commencing any new fitness or workout program. Also be sure to properly stretch and warm up as well as cool down after your workout is done! Good luck and have fun!

Warm Up: 2 minutes simulated Jump Rope followed by 3 minutes full body stretch.

You will perform 1 minute of Jump Rope followed by the prescribed exercise (typically takes about 1 minute to complete prescribed exercise). Take 15 seconds to get yourself ready for each move; so you will have 15 second breaks between exercises and jumping rope. Beginners perform the circuit one time; advanced athletes take 2 minute rest and walk it out before repeating circuit one time for a 45 minute total body workout.


  • 1 minute Jump Rope
  • 50 Mountain Climbers
  • 1 minute Jump Rope
  • 50 Bicycle Crunches
  • 1 minute Jump Rope
  • 25 Prisoner Squats
  • 1 minute Jump Rope
  • 15 Push Ups
  • 1 minute Jump Rope
  • 1 minute plank hold
  • 1 minute Jump Rope
  • 40 Regular Crunches
  • 1 minute Jump Rope
  • 30 Alternating Reverse Lunge
  • 1 minute Jump Rope
  • 15 Squat Thrusts
  • 1 minute Jump Rope
  • Side Plank (30 seconds each side)
  • 1 minute Jump Rope
  • 30 Reverse Crunch

Beginner athletes cool down. Advanced athletes REST 2 MINUTES BEFORE REPEATING THE CIRCUIT ONE TIME.

Top 10 Muscle Building Tips

We all want to build muscle…or at least we should if we want a lean, low-fat, healthy body.  Use these 10 tips to avoid overtraining and maximize your time spent in the gym.  Whether you are a man or woman, it makes no difference…muscle builds the same way, albeit a bit slower and less bulky in women.  Adding muscle mass increases your metabolism which increases the number of calories burned during rest.  Add muscle to lose fat, simple as that!

1.  Overtraining will inhibit muscle growth, limit your training sessions to no more than 5 days per week.  Mix it up by doing different body parts each day, so you can spend more time lifting weights.  Never do a full body routine every day.

2.  Aim for 12-15 sets per muscle group.  If you are doing 2 or so muscle groups per day, you should be hitting about 16-24 sets total.  The reason you are doing slightly less if combining muscles, is because you are most likely doing compound lifts that hit two groups simultaneously.

3.  That said, do compound lifts!  Deadlifts, military presses, wide-grip pullups, squats, bench press, rows, etc. are all great movements to build your physique.  These should be the backbone of your weightlifting routine.

4.  Track your progress and lift heavier weights over time.  You cannot lift the same weight forever and expect changes, it just doesn’t work that way.  You need to continually push yourself to lift heavier weights.  A journal well help show you when its time.

5.  Train with different techniques.  In addition, you need to mix up your workout routine as well to avoid that dreaded plateau.  Try doing high sets low reps, high reps low sets, supersets, strip sets, pyramid sets, etc.  There are many ways to mix it up.

6.  You must change your training routine every 4 works.  This is the only way to continually build muscle.  Otherwise, you are just wasting your time in the gym burning minimal calories.  If you have been training for a while, you may need to change every 2 weeks.

7.  Eating is MORE important than lifting.  You need calories to build muscle.  As we said above, added muscles increases your metabolism which burns more calories.  You need to make up for this deficit somehow.  Try eating 5-6, 500 calorie meals every day.  More or less may be needed depending upon your body size.

8.  Sleep is important.  Your body goes into muscle building phase when you sleep.  Be sure to get at least 8 hours every night.

9.  Protein IMMEDIATELY after workouts is vital.  Your body is craving protein immediately after the workout.  You need to take in a liquid protein (whey protein shakes are great) within 25 minutes of ending your workout.  Do this every single time.

10.  Find a great partner.  This may not apply to everyone, but many people find they can lift more and stay more motivated when working out with a partner.  Having someone to push you and be your spotter will allow you to make more progress.

The Red Bull Diet Causes Health Problems? Go Figure…

A 23-year-old Auckland mother who lost 45kg in eight months by drinking nothing but energy drink Red Bull says she has ongoing health problems because of the diet.

Brooke Robertson told the Herald on Sunday she shrank from 105kg to 60kg drinking nothing but 10 to 14 cans a day, often accompanying them with nothing more than a handful of dry Honey Puffs.

Ms Robertson said she put on weight while carrying son Keir, now four, but did not make a conscious decision to go on a Red Bull diet.

“I just started drinking it. I wasn’t sleeping, I wasn’t eating – I was exhausted,” she said.

“I just continued to drink it because it’s an appetite suppressant and I noticed I was losing weight so stuck with it.”

Ms Robertson said she managed to keep her addiction secret from family and friends, and did not recover from it until after a two-week stay in hospital following a minor heart attack.

“I managed to wean myself off it by being in hospital for that long but I had severe withdrawals – sweating, nausea, shaking. It was an addiction. The doctors stated that.”

Ms Robertson now maintains her figure through exercise and a Weight Watchers diet, but said she still suffers the effects of the extreme diet.

She said she has a heart murmur, gets severe pain and cramping in her stomach and bowel, and suffers anxiety attacks.

A Red Bull spokesman said there was “scientific evidence that caffeine is not addictive”.

The drink was available in 148 countries “because health authorities across the world have concluded that Red Bull is safe to consume”, he said.

The drink is banned in Norway, Denmark and Uruguay because of health fears.

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Share It Fitness Forums – Join Now!

Head over to and sign up for our newly opened fitness forums.  Make a user name and connect with other like-minded individuals and Share It Fitness pro’s to have all your questions answered.  The full site to launch September 1st.

Making Cost Effective Decisions

When you are in a pinch for time and want to spare your wallet, what’s better than fat food?  With their dollar menus, and other low-priced items, the appeal to your sensibilities is tough to overcome.  Where else can you eat for only a dollar?  Definitely not anything healthy, right?

Wrong.  The fact of the matter is you can create inexpensive and healthy meals for less money than the local fast food option.  What’s more, it will take you less time than it would to jump in your car and drive there and back.  The only thing that separates you from your fast food dependency is a little planning and preparation. 

These meals below are excellent options that are cost-efficient and down right tasty.  You can eat well without stuffing your body full of calories, trans fats, and sodium.  Take a look:

Meal 1: Steel cut oats, mixed with chopped banana and walnuts.  Add a little maple syrup if you wish.  Make these ahead of time and have a breakfast for the entire week.  IN PLACE OF: McDonald’s Egg McMuffin.

Meal 2:  Tuscan Chicken Salad.  Chopped chicken breast, celery, cannellini beans, lemon juice, light mayo, parsley.  Mix all together, and serve on a pita if you’d like.  Cheap, easy to prepare enough for the week, and fast.  IN PLACE OF: Taco Bell Gordita Crunch Value Meal.

Meal 3:  1 scoop protein powder,  banana,  milk, unsweetened cocoa powder, peanut butter.  Blend until thick and creamy. Unbelievably tasty and about a dollar per serving.  IN PLACE OF: Jamba Juice Berry Blast Smoothie.

Meal 4: Panko crusted “fried” chicken with steam broccoli and brown rice.  Healthy, tasty, and extremely easy.  IN PLACE OF: Popeye’s 2 piece 1 side meal.

Meal 5:  Bourbon glazed pork tenderloin.  Marinate overnight, throw on the grill when you get home, dinner ready in 10 minutes.  Tastes like a gourmet dish.  Your family will love you.  IN PLACE OF: Arby’s Giant Roast Beef sandwich with curly fries.

Golf Strength Training


Athletes who are serious about their sport or who want to get more enjoyment out of it and reduce their risk of injury should lift weights. Golf is a rotational sport that requires torque to generate speed, power and direction. Golf athletes must train in order to optimize their playing skills and reduce their risk of injury. But simply going to the gym and lifting a few weights will not get you where you want to be.

Considerations for Training

Golf is an explosive sport that places a premium on good core strength, speed from being loose and flexible, and having strong legs. A good golf strength-training program takes each of these attributes into account and focuses some of the training time on developing these areas of need.


Cardio training for golf is different than the training needed for other sports such as tennis or basketball. A golfer needs to have the stamina to walk the 18-hole course, yet none of this distance is walked at what could be classified as high-intensity. Instead, the goal for your cardio training for golf should be to ensure that once you’ve walked up to approach the ball, you are not so out of breath that you cannot effectively hit the next shot. This requires low-intensity distance training, such as power walks or jogs.

Basic Strength

Training for golf strength requires that you first establish a solid base before embarking on golf-specific strength exercises. Bench press, leg press, squats, seated row and abdominal crunches are all exercises that can be a part of your basic strength program. The key is to develop strength in each of the major muscle groups important to your golf game–legs, chest, back and abdominals.

Golf Strength

Golf-specific strength training requires you to focus in on using your muscles together, not in isolation. This type of strength training allows you to incorporate functional strength that is directly transferable to your golf game. Rotational strength movements such as lunges with an upper-body rotation, and standing oblique rotations with a cable machine or resistance tube are exactly what you need. Also, developing power, which is described as combining strength with speed, is vitally important to improving your performance. Exercises such as medicine ball throws for your chest and back, and medicine ball oblique toss and catch for your abdominals are excellent ways to address your upper body power needs.


Never stretch cold muscles. A good warm-up, which is one that raises your heart rate, increases your respiration and produces a light sweat, should be performed before a pre-workout stretch routine. Many experts recommend that your pre-workout stretch routine be what’s called a “dynamic” one, which means that you actively move a particular limb through its full range of motion. Your golf game requires this type of flexibility. Post-workout stretching is important as well, and this type of stretching should be the static stretching where you stretch a target muscle and hold the stretch for a minimum of 15 seconds.


Stand Up Paddle Boarding

The SUP Workout Routine

From hardcore athletes to inexperienced couch potatoes, paddle boarding is a sport which can benefit all types of lifestyles, in several ways! The beauty of this ultimate full-body workout is that is flexible, and able to become different types of routines… It can be treated as a hobby, as a leisure activity, used for social or meditation purposes, for a core workout, upper body workout, for a leg and butt workout, for improving performance in another sport, or simply to stay healthy. Whatever the goal is, you are free to customize your routine, and even change it up with time. You can make your work-out be whatever you want it to be, even more then one goal at once! As you may already know, the body, just like our minds, gets used to the same routine over and over again, so it is important to keep on changing it. Most people interested in this sport are most likely very creative already, however, here are some ideas on how to keep this new “relationship” alive:

You are a total lazy person who finds it very difficult to get motivated, and you want to get in shape…
You are lucky! This is a great way to begin! Unless you are not human, you won’t enjoy waking up early to go enjoy the sunrise in the middle of the water: just you and the horizon, in the peaceful ocean, or lake, or canal? An early morning light paddle for one hour might be the perfect start for you. That way you can start your day in a healthy way for your body and your mind. Treat it as a pleasure, and it will open doors to a whole new world of health, adventures, and well-being.

You may be a beginner at this sport, but are you active in another sport?
Let’s say you are looking to improve your performance in another sport or activity, this can also be a great way to do it! Regardless of what the other sport may be, this will be great to strengthen your whole body, and boost up that core, which other sports usually miss, and it is essential for performance. Most sports you are using your arms and/or legs, but this one, you are mainly using your core. Just the fact that you need to balance on the board is already a huge core workout factor, and paddleling through is all on your core. You can increase you arms strength by doing 5-7 long and powerful strokes in one side, and then change to other. If you want to strengthen those legs, you may implement some squats as you paddle, lowering the hips, with feet shoulder width apart, pretending you are sitting back on a chair as you take your stroke backwards.

You are a paddle-boarding Maniac
You eat, breath, and sleep paddle-boarding!!! Yes, your body will eventually reach a plato, where it won’t recognize the activity as challenging anymore after a while doing it…. One of the beauties of being human, is the ability to adapt, however, you may need to change up your routines in order for your workout to be effective, and in order to get better and stronger at your activity or sport. One idea is to get out there on the board with different goals every time, for example,

Monday you paddle long distance, like a nice walk along the water, with long and steady strokes, alternating one stroke each side.

Tuesday you may want to do a faster, shorter and more intense workout, maybe actually surf some waves, or just a faster rythm, alternating 3-5 fast strokes at a time. Then Wednesday you do a core routine before actually getting in the water, for example: Hold a plaque position for 2 minutes, keeping your body up on your elbows and feet, belly down, like a table. Contract all your muscles, and enjoy the burn. If you shake, its ok, just means its working! Repeat 3 times.
Another great core one is to get on a push-up position, and lower down on your elbows, then go back up on your hands, and keep on going for a whole minute. Repeat 3 times.

For the lower abs, get on a push-up position, hands on floor parallel to your shoulders, and just bring your knee in to touch the opposite elbow. Keep alternating it for a minute. Also repeat 3 times.

Wednesday you decide you will work on your upper body. So before you get in the water, do 3 sets of push-ups, with 15-25 reps. Then find a bench, or a flat higher surface, and with feet on floor, put your hands on bench and do some dips. Also 3 sets of 15 reps. If there is a pull-up bar close by, or perhaps a tree branch that can hold you, 3 sets of 15 reps it is!!!

Finally, you feel like your lower body also needs some special attention, so Thursday you do what I like to call “super-legs!” 24 forward lunges, alternating legs, then 24 lunge-jumps, meaning jumping and switching your legs up in the air, landing on the alternating leg, then 24 squats in place, and finally 12 squat-jumps. Your legs should be shaking by the end. Did I mention you are to do this circuit without rest? Then when done, rest for a minute and start over. Repeat 3 times.

Take Friday Off, your body deserves a break, maybe do some yoga, or stretching.

The weekend is here, use it to plan leisure paddles with friends, and have some fun in the sun. Do whatever you feel like!

You Paddle to socialize
You need to sign up to the paddle-boarding clubs! There are many of them out there, look them up online! The beach is where you want to be if you want to meet people, so don’t go paddle alone in canals or lakes… Great ideas are taking a picnic basket hooked up to your board with suction cups, and go to an island or another beach with friends. You can also plan full-moon paddles with a group at night, and hook up a light also with the suction cup!! There are also races and contests that go on all over, you can enter and for sure meet a lot of people with the same passion as you!

You need stress-relief and well-being
You have found the right sport! Just don’t make it a stressful situation. Mornings or evenings are perfect, when you get to see the sun-rise or sun-set, and the ocean is usually very calm during those times. Don’t go out there on a Saturday afternoon when the water is full of boats, because that will only bring you more stress! Canals and lakes are perfect for you. Take it easy, and just pretend you are walking on water! You may even take a seat if you would like, and paddle around on a seated position.

Whoever you are, and however you see this sport, you are able to customize it and make it fit into your personality! Just remember, do what makes you happy!!!

Veronica Menin

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