Archive for July, 2010

Best Time to Exercise?

Next Jumpers have been wondering: when are the best/worst times to work out?  There isn’t a WORST time – there are better times that fit your own sleep patterns.  If you are waking and sleeping during normal hours (anytime between 10PM –10AM) then you will want to work out when YOUR BODY feels YOUR highest energy levels.  For some people that is first thing in the morning. Others, it can be in the late afternoon.  Check in with your biological clock.

Although the research on this topic shows equivocal evidence, some studies report that endurance and strength are at its peak in the afternoon.  After a few meals have been digested and absorbed, you will have topped off glycogen stores (liver and muscle storage of carbohydrate) to use for fast energy.

Some studies have shown that late night workouts actually help people sleep better.

Source:

David W. Hill; Kirk J. Cureton; Mitchell A. Collins, Circadian specificity in exercise training, Ergonomics, Volume 32, Issue 1 January 1989, pages 79 – 92.

Diet-friendly Alcohol Choices

Most Next Jumpers tend to enjoy a good drink (or so…) more often than not.  How do you avoid getting one of those sexy beer-guzzling guts?

Firstly, all drinks are not created equal.  The following are the top three low-calorie and carbohydrate alcoholic beverage choices:

# 1. Wine. There are only 20 calories per ounce.  Each five-ounce glass of any white or red offers 100 calories worth of divine pleasure without any sodium, cholesterol or fat. Dietitian-pick: chardonnay, 100 calories and 1.8g carb per 5 oz.

#2. Hard Liquor.  Although higher in calories per ounce than wine, there’s only about 60-110 calories per 1.5 ounce serving.  The problem is mixing hard liquor with sugary, regular soda.  The key is to use calorie-free mixers like diet soda, diet tonic or seltzer water.  Dietitian-pick: Stoli Raspberry vodka and seltzer, 60 calories and 1.5g carb per 1 oz.

#3. Beer. There are around 150 calories per 12-ounce serving.  One pint is 180 calories.  It can be hard to estimate your intake when pouring from a pitcher.  For example: Five pints of beer = 900 calories.  That’s like having two full meals.  Dietitian-pick: Light Beer, 108 calories and 6g carb per 12 oz.

References:

Calories in Alcoholic Drinks: http://caloriecount.about.com/calories-alcoholic-drinks-ic1401

Web helps maintain weight loss

NextJump has the technology, the business skills – now we are developing nutrition and fitness interactive tools for the virtual health fair and find ourselves one step ahead of the Internet health trends.  A recent study published online on July 27 in the Journal of Medical Internet Research found that people who lost weight and used an Internet site (designed for weight maintenance) at least once per month had better luck keeping the pounds off than those who logged on less often. The researchers said the Internet can be a tool to assist people in making new habits into lifestyle adjustments.

According to Kristine L. Funk, MS, RD, of Kaiser Permanente in Portland, Ore., “…the associations between use of the website and better long-term weight control suggest that Internet-based tools can provide some of the accountability and feedback assumed necessary for successful and long-term weight maintenance.”

Primary source: Journal of Medical Internet Research
Source reference: http://www.jmir.org/2010/3/e29/

To sip or not to sip …

“Should I sip fluids while exercising?  I heard that gulping is better.”

Gulp it, sip it – just get it down.  The most important thing to note is that drinking fluids during exercise will prevent dehydration.  A recent study was done that posed the question of how well we intake fluids during exercise.  According to the research… “how we drink can make a difference in how optimally we hydrate our body.”   Gulps of fluid have been shown to leave the stomach faster, which you want to happen in order to avoid stomach cramp ups.  Gulps of fluid will expand stomach walls and increase gastric emptying time, which is why gulping is preferred.

What Makes a NextJump-Snack Winner / Loser?

What Makes a NextJump-Snack Winner?

  • 250 calories or less
  • 0 grams of trans fat and no more than 3.5 grams of saturated fat per serving
  • No more than 400mg of sodium per serving
  • No high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS)

What Makes a NextJump-Snack Loser?

  • It’s a full meal
  • There are words in the ingredient list that your grandmother would NOT have known
  • It’s loaded with added sugar. Names for added sugar on food labels include: brown sugar, corn sweetener, corn syrup, dextrose, fructose (not when found naturally in fruit – only when added to product), fruit juice concentrates, glucose, high-fructose corn syrup, honey, invert sugar, maltose, malt syrup, molasses, raw sugar, sucrose, sugar, syrup

Does your body shape affect cognition?

Lots of hype on this recent study done on 8,745 healthy women aged 65 to 79 – all had been enrolled in the initial Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) hormone trials cohort. According to the researchers (and CNN, the Sun and other media who find it necessary to broadcast preliminary studies that never replicate results), excess weight in pear-shaped women is associated with poor memory. The premise is that certain kinds of fat release specific hormones (such as cytokines) that can cause inflammation, which affects cognition. There were a bunch of limitations in this study, which should be noted. For one, the study was done on highly educated women, which means none of the results can be generalized. Secondly, there are many confounding factors that can impair one’s memory. For example, the researchers admitted that mood, age, and depression play a role.

via Study: Body shape affects memory in older women – CNN.com.

Have a fitness or nutrition link to share? Email mbeck@nextjump.com and have your link reviewed on the Daily Briefings.

NextJumper Question of the Day

I am watching my sugar intake, should I be cautious of eating fruit?

No need to “be cautious.” Fruit is extremely healthy and you should consume at least two servings in your daily diet. Note difference: Fructose versus High-Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS). Fructose is a sugar found naturally in fruit. HFCS is a man-made sugar, which is usually added to products for flavor enhancement. In total, you do not want more than 40g per day of ADDED SUGAR, i.e., the type like HFCS that manufacturers add to food. Fructose and lactose are both natural sugars and are NOT necessary to include into your total daily added sugars).

Have a fitness or nutrition question? Email mbeck@nextjump.com and have your question answered on the Daily Briefings.