Why you’re getting those cravings!

When I was at my most recent engagement, just this past Tuesday at Barre 3 in Syracuse, I was asked a lot about CRAVINGS.

One lady was saying how she had lost 80 pounds over the last 2 years but as she lost the weight, her cravings for sweets increased.

She said that she can be disciplined and have only 1 or 2 pieces, but she finds that the next day, shes uses the excuse that she had some the day before so she can have some today and ends up bingeing on it.

Have you ever felt like that? You're good in the moment, but later on it comes back as a major craving for more. And, rather than saying no, I am good. You find the nearest sweet and DEVOUR it?

That's okay. It happens.

But, I have got some good tips for you to keep in mind.

Cravings occur because we are either lacking something in our diets or because of restriction. We are either telling ourselves no we can't have something, or we aren't eating enough of a variety.

One thing that may help, adding a multi-vitamin into your daily routine to help cover your micro-nutrient bases.

Another option, making sure you're getting carbs, protein and fat into your diet daily and from different sources. Remember, we are aiming for 3 different colors and 3 different food groups a day.

And then there's restriction.

We tell ourselves no, no, no and then we get to a point where we can't say no anymore and find ourselves without any self control and elbow deep into a bag of candy or chips.

It even happens to you on a cycle, it seems like every month you end up back at square one.

If that is you, on the restriction train, I want to challenge you to start incorporating those foods that you typically crave into your daily routine. Make it okay, give yourself permission, and just have it. Now, I am not talking eating an entire bag of chips or candy, but in a portion controlled manner and I like to recommend with lunch.

When you have it at lunch, you'll still be utilizing a lot of energy for the day so you can burn the excess off and it gives you a little pick me up when you're feeling like crashing.

Cravings can be hard, too, especially around the holidays with all the treats around but remember to enjoy and move on.

You can do it!

BMI or Bogus: Should I be Paying Attention to my BMI?

31463088_Unknown

You’ve probably heard of BMI, Body Mass Index before. Either your doctor has mentioned it to you, you see what your BMI is on your physical print out, or you’ve calculated it yourself. BMI has been around in the medical field for a while, but what exactly is it and should we be paying attention to it?

Body Mass Index is a height to weight ratio, Kilograms over meters squared, and then falls into 4 different categories. There’s underweight (18.5 or less), healthy weight (18.5-24.5), over weight (24.6 to 29.9) and obese (30.0 and beyond). There’s even certain classes of the obese category to break down the level of obesity as well. Obese class 1 (30-34.9), Obese class 2 (35-39.9) and obese class 3 (40.0 and above).

In the clinical setting, like hospitals and some doctor’s offices, BMI is used and tracked as weight and health trend, it can be used for diagnosing things like metabolic syndrome and billing for malnutrition and obesity care, and for interventions.

However, as a dietitian, I don’t like to use BMI with my clients. Some clients will say all they want to do is have their BMI be in the healthy range, but they don’t always realize that a “healthy BMI” may not be  the best measure of success.

Like I said before, BMI is just a ratio, 2 numbers are plugged in and a number is calculated. This is all subjective data and data that doesn’t even depend on the person at all.

What BMI doesn’t see is your muscle mass, muscle weighs more than fat does, so if you have more muscle that the average person, you likely weigh more than the average person.

BMI doesn’t know how you eat every day, you could be eating the healthiest and most nutritious foods out there, you could be in the best shape of your life, but your BMI is calling you overweight when you clearly are not overweight or unhealthy.

BMI doesn’t care if you put hours in the gym, have a low body fat percentage or if you have a perfect bill of health. I went to school when a guy who was very muscular, low body fat percentage and a high amount of muscle mass, but his BMI is Obese class 3! A very healthy and fit male is defined as obese class 3.

Instead of paying attention to BMI, you should really be measuring success with non-scale victories!

Start measuring your waist circumference, start seeing how your energy is throughout the day, how well your sleep is, how clear your skin is and your hunger signals. That is stuff that matters!

BMI is just a number, just like how the number on the scale is just a number. What matters more is you and how you feel. You won’t remember your BMI in one year, but you’ll remember how you feel.

The Ultimate Tailgate Healthy Eating Guide

 I don't know if you're a big football fan or not, I consider myself a medium fan-one that can watch the game but prefers to just hangout at the tailgate, but chances are you'll probably be heading a football game at some point this year.

And, typically when you head to a game, you're likely going to a tailgate too!

And what is there at a tailgate?

FOOD and the opportunity for you to feel like you're going to fall off the wagon. Most people will feel overwhelmed with the (most likely) not as healthy options that are available there , which you feel like you'll fall victim to.

But, this year, I am not going to let that happen to you. I am not going to let you feel like just because you had one day of fun that all your efforts have melted away, because you deserve better.

I know that feeling, that contemplating eating another wing because you're hungry but have the deep fear that you'll mess everything up.

I get that. I know that feeling.

But this year, kiss that feeling good bye because I got a nifty tip sheet for you! If you follow me on Instagram, you know what I am talking about!

Let's stop wasting time and check it out!

Really, this is exactly what I practice and what I share with my clients every week. It can be that simple.

Here's the gist

-Try going with lighter beers throughout the day tailgate and game to minimize your risk of hangover and to lighten up the calories. Another great idea is to go with vodka and soda water with fruit or a glass of wine

 

-Make and have your potato or pasta salad as an oil based salad. You'll cut down on saturated fat and calories, while still enjoying a treat. You can even make your pasta salad with whole wheat pasta or a bean based pasta to improve the protein content to fill you up more!

 

-Wait and see if you're actually hungry for dessert. Most times, you won't even be hungry for the excess empty calories when you choose a higher protein snack or meal to have there!

 

-Pulled pork or chicken is a lean and tasty way to get some protein in which not going crazy on calories! Put the sauce on the side so you can control how much you're having.

 

-Make some roasted chickpeas in the oven or in the Air Fryer for a protein and fiber packed snack that is lower in calories and fat than salted nuts!

So, I am going to challenge you to give this a shot this weekend. Make these small swaps, eat more mindfully of how you're feeling, and just enjoy the time.

Please don't wake up the next day mad at yourself that you had fun. That you enjoyed some heavier foods or wasn't as active as you usually are. Forgive yourself. Enjoy the day and have fun.

Do I need Probiotics for Weight Loss?

The Power of

What is a Probiotic?

Probiotics are a group of live, active microorganisms (mostly bacteria, but some other microbes like yeast) that have intended health benefits within the GI tract

What do Probiotics do inside our bellies?

Probiotics can ferment, decompose, and help to digest the foods you eat. The bacteria must be live cultures in order for us to get the benefits of probiotics.

What can probiotics do for our health?

Research has been emerging on probiotics and shows that those with lesser amount of “good” gut bacteria are more susceptible to diseases of the GI tract like Ulcerative Colitis, Crohn’s, Irritable Bowel, and even has been linked to greater risk of obesity.  Having appropriate amounts of probiotics in the diet and in the gut are linked to a healthier immune system, improved cardiovascular health, better nutrient absorption, and lessened risk of obesity.

Where do we get Probiotics?

We start acquiring gut microbes when we are born, and continue to acquire more depending on our environment. In fact, if you have a pet, you have more gut microbes than someone who doesn’t! Your food and drink choices, as well as, overall health, stress and antibiotic use can impact the gut microbe amounts. Antibiotics kill all of the bacteria in the gut, whether good or bad, in attempt to help fight off illness!

Sources of Probiotics

Fermented foods are all great sources of probiotics. Fermented foods are cheese, kefir, and yogurt. The good bacteria is used in the fermentation process, which helps yield the final product. To know if you’re getting good bacteria, the label on the product will say “live and active cultures”. There are other food sources of probiotics that go beyond dairy; these are any pickled vegetables, some soybean products, and unpasteurized sauerkraut. Another source of probiotics is Kombucha, which is a yeast fermented tea drink. It provides the good bacteria, while in a drinkable tea form.

Eating and Storage of Probiotics

-      Most probiotics need to be kept in a refrigerator, so be sure to store them between 34-38 degrees.

-      Probiotics come in different strains, check the label to see what type you’re getting (there’s Lactobacillus rhamnosus, L. casei, Bifidobacterium lactis, L. bulgaricus, and S. themophiles.)

-      Cooking and eating will destroy the live and active cultures

-      If you have a milk allergy, be careful because some probiotics are grown in a dairy medium, even if the product is in a dairy product

-      Try to have probiotics in your diet every day since they cannot be stored, they only pass through the GI tract