Avoid Carbs and Insulin Before Bed

SWEETFRIES5964Carbs are a poor choice as a pre-bed meal. Complex carbohydrates that is.

The reason:  Consuming carbohydrates will result in a significant insulin release. This will  put the breaks on fat-burning.  If that is your goal. Carbs are also much more easily stored as fat in the evening hours when metabolism is naturally slowing in preparation for sleep.  You have very little opportunity to burn off that energy when consuming carbs at night – unless you have some nighttime activity or running a marathon the day after.

Also, remember insulin production is partly influenced by your previous meal. The more carbohydrates consumed the more insulin produced.

Otherwise, stick to protein, veggies and healthy fats for your last meal…

and have a good night : ) zzzzzz

GO for Life! ™jefitthumb2

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal  Trainer

 

 

How do you know if you are Insulin Resistant or Carbohydrate Intolerant?

Continuing on the topic of insulin…

As previously discussed in last weeks blog,
Insulin is a hormone, made by the pancreas,  that controls the level of glucose (sugar) in the blood and allows the cells to use the glucose for energy or storage as body fat for later use

Symptoms to look for after eating carbs:M&Ms

•Intestinal bloating or gas

•Poor concentration or sleepiness

•Feelings of depression

•Frequently hungry

•Frequently fatigued or low energy

•Insomnia or sleep apnea

•Frequent craving for sweets or caffeine

•Polycystic ovary for women

Do not add carbohydrates in back-back meals or snacks because insulin production is partly influenced by your previous meal. The more carbohydrates consumed the more insulin produced.

Just the mere taste of sugar on the tongue stimulates the release of insulin.

About 40% or more of the carbs you eat is converted to fat and stored as body fat.. any wonder you have an excess amount?

Finding your level of tolerance is what’s most important and then eat only whole food sources of carbohydrates, nothing processed or refined.  Once you find this you yourself can find the balance in your diet…Who knows maybe in your life too : )

Insulin resistance or carbohydrate intolerance may be  a precursor to Type 2 diabetes, heart disease and obesity.

GO for Life! ™joycethumb

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

Ref material for this blog post from “The Big Book of Health and Fitness” By Dr. Phillip Maffetone… Thanks Dr. Romero for the referral  : )

 

Insulin Resistance and The Rx

Here is the Rx …

sugarI too am insulin resistant and this has been a constant struggle for me in managing my weight. How I manage it is by keeping my complex carbs in small amounts. For instance I take one baked sweet potato and cut into quarters and only eat that quarter at that serving, in combination with protein so that it slows down the insulin rush. Adding a small amount of olive oil to them will also slow down that rush.

As my complex carbohydrate sources, I stick mostly with sweet potatoes, and some white, yucca and butternut squash. Generally, I don’t eat grains or legumes. When I start to get a reaction I pull them out completely for a few days until my system is balanced. Your energy levels, sleep patterns, and hunger pangs will tell you when to put them back in, it’s a cycling effect.

Insulin is a natural hormone made by the pancreas that controls the level of glucose (sugar) in the blood and allows the cells to use the glucose for energy.  When glucose floods the bloodstream the pancreas has to pump out enough insulin to drive that glucose into cells. The more glucose, the more resistant your tissues eventually become to the effects of insulin so the pancreas has to secrete even more and work overtime.

Diet certainly plays a factor but exercise can greatly improve insulin resistance.

Resistance training- is one of the best ways to improve insulin resistance and glucose control. Creating more muscle tissue creates more insulin receptors, improving the absorption of glucose into muscles so that it’s not floating in your blood or being converted into fat for lack of storage space.  As the muscle absorbs the glucose, the pancreas can now relax.

Interval training- which alternates a relaxed pace with bursts of high-intensity movement – like HIIT Training, generates better glucose control than steady-state cardio. The intense contractions that fatigue muscles also break down carbohydrate stores in muscle. The muscles then become much more responsive to insulin as they attempt to replenish these stores.

As discussed in previous blogs  another reason to get a heart rate monitor. This will help heal yourself while you’re getting in shape and losing weight.

Insulin resistance, is a major risk factor for the development of Type II diabetes.

The prescription…exercise!

GO for Life! ™joycethumb

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal

Sweet Potato vs. White Potato

sweetpotatochips_6454A friend once asked me why I choose sweet over white potatoes if sweet potatoes have more sugar?

Despite their name, they don’t!

On the glycemic index compare 45 to 75-100 on the white potato.

Sweet Potatoes are also richer in anti-oxidants. The deeper the color of flesh, the greater the antioxidant content.  If you can’t see the flesh buy the variety with the darkest skin.sweet potato salad

A note on cooking these sweets…Steaming, roasting or baking them can double their anti-oxidant value while boiling reduces it.

One sweet potato delivers 438 percent of your daily value of Vitamin A, eye health, while a single spud serves up none.  They also provide a third more vitamin C, has more fiber and has fewer calories and carbs.

Clearly the sweet potato takes root.

GO for Life! ™joycethumb

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

Reference information for this blog post from “Eating on the Wild Side: The Missing Link to Optimum Health”  – Jo Robinson

18 Million pounds of POTATO chips on Super Bowl Sunday – gone : O !!!!

SWEETFRIES5964We consume eighteen million pounds of potato chips on Super Bowl Sunday alone!  We eat 7.5 billion pounds of French fries a year!

It’s no wonder POTATOES have gotten a bad rap for being a high-glycemic food.

This means that we digest sugars so rapidly that they give us a sharp rise in blood glucose. We are not designed to handle this sugar rush so we end up overweight, pre-diabetic, which can lead to Type 2 diabetes and that leads to a multitude of other diseases.

Our bodies function best when you eat low-glycemic foods that release their sugar over a short span of a few hours rather than in a short burst.

Potatoes are not necessarily bad for you. They are unprocessed, whole foods and can become a nutritious part of your diet as a great source of potassium, vitamin C and high in B2, B3 and folic acid.

Here are some tricks to tame the sugar rush of high glycemic potatoes:

•If you cook potatoes and then chill them for about 24-hours before you eat them, they are magically transformed into a low- or moderate-glycemic vegetable.

The cool temperature converts the potatoes’ rapidly digested starch into a more “resistant “starch that is broken down more slowly. This can reduce your blood sugar response by as much as 25 percent.

•Adding fat to potatoes or cooking them in fat also slows down the digestive process.

French fries produce a smaller increase in blood sugar than baked or steamed potatoes.

HELLO FRENCH FRIES : D!!!

•And, sprinkling fries with vinegar slows down digestion even more.  BONUS

Blue, red & purple potatoes offer the most antioxidants & health benefits.

I am NOT suggesting you run out and get fast food fries.  I am however suggesting you prepare them yourselves and still enjoy this tasteful treat while reaping the nutritional benefits from the spuds.

Sweet treats on the next blog…see you there.

GO for Life! ™contact

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

Reference information for this blog post from “Eating on the Wild Side: The Missing Link to Optimum Health”  – Jo Robinson

Carbs & the Insulin Response

Tim asks “In what way do carbs “hold you until the next meal? Carbs provide an insulin response, which is quick, and wear off quick. This results in your energy going up, then back down quickly, resulting in a feeling of needing more energy sooner, compared to a low carb meal. Protein creates a hormone response that signals a felling of satiety to you brain (feeling of fullness). Mixing some protein with carbs will probably slow this effect somewhat, but it won’t stop the insulin release, and creation of body fat if the energy is not used immediately.”

Yes, indeed they do provide an insulin response, that is exactly why your timing is crucial and the kind of carbs you eat even more so.

Always think whole and unprocessed.

Lower glycemic index carbohydrates tend to enter the bloodstream slowly, they are therefore able to maintain a steady release of insulin that activates the enzyme glycogen synthetase, which is essential for glycogen storage.  This is what gives you long lasting energy.

Not to mention,
for appearance sakes makes your muscles look fuller and you look leaner :D !

Some good  lower glycemic complex carbs are steel- cut, oatmeal, yams, butternut squash.

The protein together with the carb slows down the insulin response so it enters the bloodstream slowly and lasts longer for sustained energy.

Again, there is time and place for these carbs,

•In the morning when your glycogen stores are empty.

•2-2 ½ hours before a workout for optimal performance.

•After a workout to replenish used glycogen stores.

Eaten at these times, the body will use them instead of storing them to then later appear as fat.

Eat smart &jefitthumb2

 GO for Life! ™

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

“The Healthy Show”

P& me wide[1]Q&A

We live in a multicultural society, and we are eating food from different cultures and countries. We also want to try the new gourmet restaurant or the new diet. Some people want to go vegetarian, but they get tired in the process…

HOW DO WE EAT HEALTHY with all this influence around us?

What will be your best advice to our audience?me full body

There are so many options today.. More than ever I Feel.   There’ s Paleo, Vegan, Low Carb, Low Fat , High Protien, The Ducan Diet, just to name a few…

The best advice I can give is to find a nutrition plan that works for you.  What might work for someone else may not be right for you.  Think of it as a way of life, NOT a diet. It’s something you will have to live with day in and day out. It requires Discipline.

The one thing that will work for everyone is to think WHOLE.   Lean Protein sources, healthy fats, fresh vegetables & fruits…organic whenever possible.  When eating complex carbohydrates stick to unprocessed sources like potatoes and butternut squash. Whole foods – means nothing processed.

photoHow did you become a nutrition specialist?

     When I began strength training, my trainer taught me that if I was going to be training hard I had to eat to supplement my training. That is eating the right food at the right time so I could see the results of what I was training for.  Working out alone just wasn’t going to cut it.   Eating right had to be integrated in the plan.  Soon it became a way of life and I improved with time as did my physique. I wanted to learn more so I went back to school and got certified.me cropped

Thank you Kiko Ricota & Mauricio Portillo  for the opportunity to appear on your show, Penelope Sosa for making it easy  & Valerie Girard for your beautiful make-up artistry.
I feel blessed.

GO for Life! ™

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

Calories Do Count BUT…(part II)

jefitthumb2A calorie is the approximate amount of energy needed to raise the temperature of one gram of water by one degree Celcius.

But is a calorie a calorie? what I mean is are all calories created equally… the answer is a very loud  resounding NoooOOOO!!!!

Carbohydrates and protein have 4 calories per gram, while fats have more than twice as much — an entire 9 calories per gram. Alcohol weighs in at 7 calories per gram.

And depending on the time of day that you consume each one or the amounts of one over the other can effect your overall ability to gain or lose weight depending on your goals.

So rather than obsessing about how many calories are in each piece of food, consider the food source and the amount of nutrients it delivers to your body and the time of day that you eat that source.

Keep in mind, your body only uses what it needs and the rest will be stored as FAT : (

Which brings up another point YOUR BODY TYPE.

Different body types have different requirements and this is where it gets tricky…

Diets based on the same amount of calories, but different proportions of fat, protein and carbohydrates, result in different amounts of weight loss depending on your body type

But just to give you an idea of how many calories are in any given food

This link can provide some helpful info on calorie counting…

http://nutritiondata.self.com

still more on this picture stay tuned…

GO for Life! ™

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

STEEL-CUT OATMEAL RECIPE

oatmeal can

 

Here’s a simple recipe for you to follow.

For a little xtra flavor I’ve included a delicious sauce to put on top.

 

STEEL-CUT OATMEAL the RECIPE :

Measure 1 cup uncooked put in to 4 cups of boiling water

Add cinnamon

Bring down to low temp lt simmer about 20-25 minutes ..

monitor the water so that it does not dry out completely

Then let cool

Put away in fridge ..next morning scoop out half cup put in sauce pan and add a little coconut milk or almond milk  and maple syrup to taste

For a super fiber blast  and omega-3s add flax seeds & chia seeds

Simmer on low until warm ..

Can also add vanilla and top with fresh organic berries

For a little xtra special sauce on top

Cinnamon Almond or Coconut  Butter Sauce (whisk together: 1 tbsp almond or coconut butter, 1 tbsp almond or coconut milk, 1 tsp maple syrup, & 1/4 tsp cinnamon

Bon appetite    joycethumb

GO for Life! ™

In peace, health & with much love,

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

The “Skinny” on Artificial Sweeteners & Your Alternatives

Joycelyn-253webArtificial sweeteners are used in abundance in almost every “diet” drink, “lite” yogurts, puddings, and ice creams, most “low-carb” products, and almost all “reduced-sugar” products.

Yes, artificial sweeteners save you calories, but there’s growing evidence that they can increase your appetite for sweets and other carbohydrates causing you to eat more later.  Therefore, you don’t really save any calories at all.

Some of the most popular artificial sweeteners on the market today:

 

Splenda (sucralose)- Yellow

Aspartame-Blue

Saccharine- Pink

Also, studies have shown that artificial sweeteners can stimulate high insulin levels in your body too, which again can promote fat storage.

So yes, these artificial sweeteners can make you FAT!!!!

Some natural sweetener options are  honey, organic maple syrup & organic agave, but still these options are high in calories, carbohydrates and sugars.

Your alternative?  STEVIA

I’ve yet to see any negative reports or health concerns regarding STEVIA and only positive potential health benefits.

The herb Stevia Rebauadiana, has been used for centuries by the Guarani Indians of Paraguay nutritionally and medicinally.

STEVIA acts as general tonic which increases energy levels & mental acuity

STEVIA is

•both carb-& calorie-free

•helps with digestion, reduces gas & stomach acidity

•used topically as an ointment in the treatment of eczema & acne

•an ideal sweetener for people w high blood pressure, it helps lower hypertension

•helps to reduce cravings for sweets & fatty foods and serves as an exceptional aid in weight loss & management.

 Rule of thumb: 1 tbsp is roughly equivalent to one cup of sugar in sweetness. It’s 30x sweeter than sugar.

My personal favorite based on taste is NuStevia™

“Health is Wealth”

GO for Life! ™

In peace, health & with much love

Joycelyn Bejar
Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist
Certified Personal Trainer

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