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PTI Nutrition

Archive for June, 2011

Oats are not just for the weekend!

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Quick Power Breakfast!

So you think that you only have time to prepare and eat oatmeal on the weekend because you are slow cooking some steel-cut oats. You are missing one of the best ways to get a whole grain, fiber rich meal in during the week. As it turns out an oat is an oat, whether it is steel-cut, rolled flat or even pre-steamed so that it will cook in 90 seconded instead of 15 minutes or longer. Flattening and steaming do not remove the whole grain benefits. You still get all the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber! Sure the steel-cut kind is so nutty, chewy and yummy but the instant is so convenient for a quick hearty filling breakfast on the go. I often add a scoop of vanilla whey protein powder for a quick breakfast that is full of fiber and protein and it can be ready in under 3 minutes! My only words of caution are with the prepackaged flavored oats:  you have to watch their added sugar and salt! There are good choices but make sure you are reading the labels! Get you oats on!

Joining Forces! Get the Word Out! Help us!

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Hey everyone!

Personal Training Institute of Tucson is Participating in the Joining Forces national program. This is an absolutely free program for the families of deployed Reservists and Guardsmen. PTI of Tucson will provide FREE personal training and nutrition for the immediate family (spouse, teenage children) of these deployed heros! This program started nationally on June 1st and we have yet to have any of the local community participate in the program. Free of charge PTI of Tucson will provide them with 3 months of twice a week personal training and nutrition counseling every other week. After the initial three months, the services changes to a cardio only membership with periodic nutritional check ins. That is 6 months of free services. Should they wish to continue beyond that we are offering discounted rates.

Additionally we are offering discounted rates to all active duty military and their families and all veterans as well.

Please help us spread the word so that we can help as many families that we can!

Farmed Raised Fish vs. Wild Caught Fish?

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Last week we talked about the benefits of including more fish in your diet. From both a nutritional and environmental perspective, farmed fish are far inferior to their wild counterparts.

Here’s WHY:

two wild salmon running upstream

Wild Salmon get more exercise!

  • Despite being much fattier, farmed fish provide less usable beneficial omega 3 fats than wild fish
  • Due to the feeding conditions of aquafarming, farm-raised fish are filled with antibiotics and exposed to more concentrated pesticides than wild fish
  • The fat content of farmed salmon is excessively high–30-35% by weight
  • Wild salmon have a 20% higher protein content
  • Farmed salmon contains higher concentrations of toxins known as PBDE‘s, a horrible class of carcinogenic compounds.

Fitness Fast Fact: Play 12 minutes of volleyball on the beach and burn 100 calories!

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Related posts:

  1. Why is Oily Fish so Good for You?
  2. The PTI Buzz: Fish
  3. Steps to achieve your weight loss goals – Eliminating temptations!

Fast food sandwich – Grilled Chicken or Burger?

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We all know that fast food is usually not the best choice but it is sometimes unavoidable. If you are going to have  a fast food sandwich, would you choose the Grilled Chicken or the Burger?

Grilled Chicken

Most would opt for the Grilled Chicken Sandwich thinking leaner meat and less calories. That is not necessarily the case. However it is almost always the case that the chicken sandwich has way more (usually double) sodium. This is primarily due to chicken processors brining the chicken to help it stay moist and chicken sandwiches often pick up salty riders like bacon and swiss cheese. For example the BK Tendergrill Chicken Sandwich as 1,100mg of salt and 75% of that comes from the chicken where as the Whopper Jr has half the sodium and 130 fewer calories. At McDonald’s the Premium Grilled Chicken Club Sandwich has 1,410mg of salt. That is 18% more than a Quarter with cheese and is not lower in calories. So make sure you are checking the nutrition of the foods you are eating from the sodium side as well as the calorie, sugar and fat side. You have 2,300mg per day of sodium to intake. Budget it well!

Boiling Vegetables? Not the best!

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Roasted Vegetables!

So you have been listening and now know that half your dinner plate should be vegetables! Great job. So you have been boiling a big pot of vegetables each night. Healthy right? Well really what you are creating is a vitamin rich pot of water. The is fine if you are making soup and will be consuming the broth. But if you are just boiling the veggies to eat and throwing the water away you are losing almost half of the vitamins. Cooking vegetables that are high in water-soluable vitamins like the Bs, C and folate in boiling water robs them of these important vitamins. For example: boiled broccoli lost 35-55% of its vitamin C in only 5 minutes. Steamed broccoli only lost up to 7%. So, steam, roast, grill or microwave your half a plate of veggies!

No Snacks = Weight Loss? Not!

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So you thought that by cutting out your snacking to help lose weight. I know it may seem counterintuitive but eliminating snacks usually hurts your chances of losing weight and leads to more hunger and fatigue. It is pretty tough to make it all the way from noon to dinner without eating anything. And when dinner finally get there you are so hungry that you make bad choices and tend to overeat! Any healthy eating plan accounts for 1-2 snacks each day. Snacks need to be something nutritious and satisfying though. Here are some good ideas: reduced fat cheese sticks, nuts, fruit or low fat yogurt (watch the sugars!). There are a variety of good protein bars out there as well. Watch your portions though, with many of these bars a snack would be half the bar! Snack healthy!

It’s Really Working…

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Today was weigh in day and I have lost another 5.4 pounds!  I lost 7.4 pounds of fat and gained the difference in muscle and water.  PTI uses a Tanita Body Composition scale which can tell you exactly what your body, muscle, and water percentages are, which is great because I know that I really lost 7.4 pounds of fat in the last two weeks even though my total body weight loss is 5.4 pounds.  I also lost another 5 inches off my body!  I have lost a total of 15 pounds so far!

I have never lost more than 10 pounds IN MY LIFE.  It is unbelievable to me, not in the good “Oh my god, that is unbelievable!” way, but in the… “hmm, I can’t really believe that, there must be something wrong” way.  I am a perfectionist (oldest of 4), and not in the good type of way.  I am a perfectionist as in, if I think I am going to fail at something, or not be able to do it perfectly – then I would rather not do it.  Over the last couple weeks, even though I have been sticking to the 1200 calorie diet, exercising and losing weight, I find that I am constantly disappointed in myself.  It is almost impossible for me to me to be excited because I feel like, maybe it wasn’t good enough, or I am waiting to fail.  I went hiking on Saturday with my dad – almost a two hour hike.  I burned 700 calories, and still I felt disappointed that it was so hard for me and that I had to stop multiple times along the way just to catch my breath.  I am not sure how to change that yet, but I know it is something that I will have to deal with at some point.  There are a lot of things that I will have to deal with at some point and most of them have to do with the emotional and mental aspect of weight loss.  I hope to be as honest and open as possible in this blog, so as I deal with these things, I will share them.

This last Sunday for Father’s Day I went and spent the day with my parents and my grandparents doing what else…. eating!  Yay!  Now, every time I have tried to lose weight before I would always make excuses on holidays and say… “It’s a holiday, I can eat whatever I want.”  This time, I still stuck to my 1200 calorie diet and did not go over 1200 calories.  I made turkey enchiladas for only 288 calories a serving.  My mom made more “unhealthy” food, but I still calculated the calories and ate very small portions of what she made – probably about 1/4 cup serving of each.  For dessert I bought an angel food cake – I only ate half a serving, with fresh cut strawberries mixed with lemon juice and Truvia.  I have to say that I didn’t feel like I missed out at all, it was all good food and I was full.  It is all about eating the right portions and eating healthier versions of the food you love.  Another important thing is standing up for yourself and sticking to your decisions.  Don’t let anyone, especially family, deter you from that.  It is easy for them to say, “it’s a holiday,” or “today’s not about counting calories” or “it’s not going to taste as good if you make it healthy,” which were all comments said to me this past weekend.  In the end, I can’t let a holiday throw me off track, for me it IS about counting calories every day and it tasted just as good “healthy”, and everyone loved what I made.

One thing I do know, is that I have lost 15 pounds since I began – and that is 15 pounds I will never see again.  I will never see the number 322 again, and in just a couple weeks I hope to never see the number 300 again!

Here is a pic of my dad and I on our hike!  See you back next week – please subscribe to my blog (click on the Sign Me Up! button on the right hand side of this page) and you will be automatically notified when there is a new post!



Ground Turkey or Ground Sirloin?

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So you have been substituting ground turkey in everything that calls for ground beef thinking you are getting less fat. Are you? You might not be.

It depends on how well you are reading your labels. Turkey breast is lean, but dark meat is not and some ground turkey contains both. Consider this: a quarter pound of regular ground turkey has 3g of saturated fat while the same amount of ground sirloin has 2.5g. So, in some cases the ground sirloin not only has the edge in taste but also has less saturated fat. Now if you go for the ground turkey breast you are only getting half a gram of saturated fat. Bottom line: best choice is ground turkey breast but your next best option is the lean ground sirloin. Make sure you are reading your labels and eating lean!