Hating on Sugar: Does it cause all of our problems?


You’ve got problems.

All of us do. Having problems isn’t nearly as exhausting as the prospect of solving them, though.  Who has time to read The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (or practice it!), who can afford the weekly therapy investigating our suboptimal behaviors satisfying our inner needs, and who’s got the patience to develop a mindfulness-based approach to our email, let alone the real stress points of our lives.  Doesn’t someone have an easy answer to everything?

They DO! Enter a limelight-seeking Dr. or celebrity or worse, both at the same time: they come out with a book or go on a talkshow and ask “Are you stressed out? Are you overweight? Are you fatigued? Do you feel you are not living up to your potential?” We predictably scream YES!”, or at least eek out a tear-filled nod, if you catch us at the right spinally-challenged-camel moment.

Then comes their solution. They know what’s causing all of our ills. It’s not the 10 hours of sitting per day. It’s not the fact we are constantly surrounded by all types of foods and we can pretty easily exist without taking so much as 3 steps during a day. It’s not the high pressure to be insanely productive, be the perfect nurturing and attentive parent, have the best relationship, live in a pristine and organized house, and also be ready at any moment to pose for the cover of Glamour. Nope. None of that matters. What is ruining your life is just this: sugar. 

Really?  Is sugar a toxin? Or is true that, aside from swallowing hypodermic needles, the dose makes the poison? 

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Chocolate milk does an athlete’s body good? The latest research on a childhood fave.

You’ve heard him: those porn-like grunts; the grating screams of chains dog-piling on top of each other; the head-butting of tons of heavy iron against…more tons of heavy iron; blaring beats at next-door-night-club decibel levels advertising his music taste; even the almost-audible throbbing of his veins painting his body like a corrugated road-map. It’s “that guy” at the gym: conductor of Cacophonous Symphony, demanding you to listen, hoping that you’ll envy, and expecting that you’ll judge.

Enough people have slammed on “that guy.” He puts tuna in his oatmeal. He deadlifts his car for fun. He brings chicken breasts to movies as snacks. And he wouldn’t be caught dead in the gym without his beloved protein shake, either the home-spun version found in some measuring Tupperware-like bottle, or the Muscle Milks that are typically sold at the gym’s front desk.

But can we learn something from “that guy”? And what would happen if he saved 3.75 on his Muscle Milk or 44.98 on his Whey protein powder and just rolled with some 99 cent Moo-tastic chocolate milk instead (oh, the image-detonating horrors!) And while we’re at it, what’s up with chocolate milk for the rest of us who don’t bench press the weight of an adolescent polar bear?

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Carbs: Is it OVER? What to expect if you break up with carbohydrates.

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You’re bloated. You’re tired. You’re irritated. “Is this all life has to offer?” You slap peanut butter on your same-see-it-all-the-time bagel, wishing your life could be more exciting and fresh. You squint your eyes at your dear toasted buddy, and begin to wonder….Could it be true that your comfort BFF is the real enemy? You need something to blame your woes on, and the media, your friends, even your gym have all been desperately screaming at you who they think the culprit is: Carbs.  Dump that loser Carb from your life, and your troubles, and trouble areas, will melt away!

But you’ve been together so long! Should you really end your relationship?! Or will you find a new set of problems in the almost-too-green-to-be-real grass on the other side of your fence?  Before you kick your Carb-mate to the curb, let’s see what the research says you can expect if you decide to “break up” with Carbohydrates…*

(Blog previously posted on nutrivise.tumblr.com!)

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Detox-arrhea and Other Pure-ific Trends! Should you “Cleanse”?

What Detox sounds like:

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What it can often be like:

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“Cleansing” or “detoxing:” Ten years ago these either implied potentially pH-offsetting genital washing with perfumed products or checking oneself into a hardcore rehab with people unable to brush their teeth without heavy narcotics, respectively. Today, it is the new chic thing to brag about doing.  Whether it’s giving up sugar / caffeine / anything that you like or swearing off all food except for a daily 42 oz dram of what appears to be reconstituted lawn trimmings, many people strongly feel they should follow some strict guidelines in order to get rid of all the “toxins” that they’ve been convinced their body is unable to process.

Before you rush out to join in on the colonic explosion party, let’s visit this land of envisioned virginal purity and see what the experts and research (or lack thereof) seem to say about it…

(Blog previously posted on nutrivise.tumblr.com!)

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Skinny Minnie? Low carb mice and their high fat arteries…

Low-carb diet on the outside…

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Low-carb diet on the inside?

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I know what you’re thinking. First…GYAH!  Second, I am not a mouse, let alone an Atkins one, (and most especially not a zombic, hypoglycemic Minnie!).  And sure, it’d be easier to translate the findings of experimental research to humans if we actually used humans in the experiment.  But it’s tough to get medical permission to give someone potential poison and then wait and see what happens for the good of the world (yes, even if they are puppy killers). So research typically starts out in mice…

As it turns out, mice make a pretty well-established decent model for studying how we clog up our heart pipes. Read on to hear about new findings on how a high protein and low carb diet may be hurting the heart behind the scenes…

(Blog previously posted on Nutrivise.tumblr.com!)

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It’s all natural, my pretty…. Supplements Part 2: The gripping sequel!

Where last we left off, we were lugging our suitcases of $537 worth of all-natural supplements to our car after talking to Edna, the nutrition expert in our local crunchy-munchy-raw-n-natural-morally-superior health food store.  After hearing that self-titled nutrition experts aren’t necessarily educated or licensed like dietitians, you retort

“But fine. So what!? I happened to have $537 that I WANT to spend on these things that may or may not help me achieve all my dreams. If I end up happier / younger / turning into <insert Hollywood Heart-Throb here>’s look-alike or girlfriend, sweet. If not, oh well, no harm no foul, right?”

(Blog previously posted on nutrivise.tumblr.com!)

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Seductive Supplements: Who do I trust? Part 1

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You know how it goes. You show up to the “health section” of a health food store or supplement department. Oftentimes an eager but nonaggressive person wearing a “nutrition expert” badge will sidle up to you with a warm and compassionate smile. “Can I help you?” she asks, her bright skin and smile seeming luminescent in the industrial light….

(Blog previously posted on Nutrivise.tumblr.com!)

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