Nutrition Hack Wednesday: Healthy Alcohol? (Click Bait)

Many Americans enjoy an adult beverage every now and then but just how many exactly? Try 84.6%, according to NIH as of 2015. I think it’s safe to say we love us some alcohol 😂.

This got me thinking about some recent people speaking on mixing certain alcohols with kombucha. I’m not in way way suggesting this negates alcohols effect on the mind or body at all but it did make me curious as to what it would taste like. If it’s at all decent with respect to taste it may provide, if nothing else, a better alternative to other sugary mixers.

So… here it is.

*Disclaimer: Please remember to always drink responsibly. Especially when your adding in mixtures, it’s easy to forget how much is in a drink or how many you’ve actually had in an evening.

Sites with kombucha cocktails:

  1. HonestCooking.com
  2. gothamist.com

Let me know what you think!

Happy Training!

Nutrition Hack Wednesday : The Ultimate Hack You’ve Been Missing. (CLICK BAIT)

Now, I told you this was click bait and yet, here you are 😂. Disclosure the picture is a dessert Erin made earlier this week and is not discussed here but I’d be more than happy to post if anyone wants it ☺️.

Today, is something different from most days.  Usually, SFP gives you a piece of equipment, technology, or some other type of “hack” that can add value to your day. But today, I wanted to give you a quick word of advise wherever, you may be on your journey.

I’m a part of many different groups from basic group chats on my phone to facebook groups, and yes, even a mastermind or two.  They all have a different purpose and no, not all is specific to fitness.  Some are for confidence boosters, others are “think tanks” to get your mind going for your business, and finally yes, a good majority are health and fitness related.

With everyone having an opinion on health and fitness these days it’s more important than ever, to find qualified people to seek your answers from.  Yes, anyone can help motivate you but not everyone understands the science behind certain things.

I am by no means saying you must have a degree or certification to mean qualified but I am saying, you should seek experience and qualifications first vs. what someone does or just looks like.

EVERYONES SELLING YOU SOMETHING.

Just scroll through your feed and see all the incredibly shredded, jacked, or ripped humans throughout the social world.

Take a quick look at his/her bio and BAM! GET JACKED or RIPPED  like me NOW!!!!!

and in 12 HOURS YOU CAN BE TOO!!!!!!!!! SUBSCRIBE NOW!!!!!!!!

🙄Give me a break.  If anyone of these persons is a real fitness expert they will tell you right off the bat, 21 days is garbage when it comes to BIG GOALS.

Hey, I’m all for whatever gets you 🏃moving and taking a step in the right direction but no that a quick challenge is just that, a small step to your larger goals.  I get pretty upset when I see tons of people being taken advantage of this way because the sellers know you’d give anything to look just like them.

But like most of the people 🏆showcasing their bods on social media, if you want something like that, you have to work for it.  In the kitchen, in the lab, and everywhere around you.  Your movement is your opportunity to reshape your body and image.

So, stop scrolling and wishing and instead, start moving!

DO IT!

The whole point of this article is to get you from the mindset of searching for the perfect diet, workout plan, detox, or whatever else everyone is trying to sell you on.

Pick something!

Literally, just pick one thing as in a type of diet or workout and try it out for 30 days with no exceptions to see how you feel.  If you feel great, awesome, stay with that.  If you feel ok then change-up a few things.  If you feel like poop, then try something else.  We (myself included) get into this mindset where we see someone else doing something or looking amazing and think oh hey! they must have the secrete.

You want to know the actual secrete?

THERE IS NO BEST WORKOUT PLAN, DIET, ETC.ETC.ETC.

The perfect plan is completely dependent on the individual, his/her goals, current biological status, and more!  What works for you in your 20s may not even come close to work whats for you in your 40s.  If you once ate pizza and never gained a pound but now look at a twix and gain 12lbs, well somethings going on now that needs to be addressed which was present before.

Instead of drooling over others, why not become the ultimate detective for yourself. And of course share your experience but again know, just because it worked for you doesn’t mean it will work for the next person or anyone else in the world, for that matter.

 

FINAL WORD

Instead of working in absolutes like paleo = good/bad, high carbs = good/bad, sugar = good/bad, I believe we should be accepting of all and understand not everyone has the same goals or the same biology driven their fundamental processes.  Also, youR body doesn’t really work that way so why should you.

Biologically speaking, if you ingest a substance, the substance is broken down or not broken down which typically sets off a chain of events.  Your body doesn’t go, oh hey! everyone, sugar’s back, let’s close the doors on it because sugar is a bad substance.

Your body sees sugar as fuel and if you don’t need that fuel right away, the body wants to store that fuel for later use.

Problems then arise when all we keep doing is giving our body fuel we don’t need.  This is why most diet plans end up working.  They all usually have the same specs: eat more veggies, limit either cars or fats and then the opposite macro will be higher while your protein goal may vary depending on your exercise level and type.

What my colleagues don’t want you to know is they don’t have secrete workouts, secrete diets, or anything else you can’t easily access from the internet these days.  In general, grab a simple workout plan to follow for 12 weeks.

Institute healthier eating or pick one of the many diets out there to try for 30 days.  I usually suggest starting on the diet for 1-2 weeks then starting a 12-week protocol but that’s ultimately, your call.

Lastly, I will, however, suggest if you are at an elite level, an athlete, very serious about your workouts, health, etc. hands on coaching is where you need to be.  And the difference between a good and a great coach can make or break your peak performance.

Happy Training!

Nutrition Hack Wednesday: Why You Need Macros in Your Life!

✳️Once you hit a certain point, you can pretty much know what and how much food you are consuming within a certain range.  

For instance, a professional golfer 🏌️‍♀️can hit a shot with a club and probably within 5-10 yards tell you how far he hit the ball.  An architect could most likely look at a room and judge the square feet of that room pretty accurately. And a professional gamer 🎮 could probably guess within 1-2 energy drunks 😈, how many they have consumed within a 24 hour period.  HAHA!

I joke 🃏 because I used to be a hardcore gamer (at least I think) so, I know energy 😵 drinks can be consumed at a crazy, rapid rate without even thinking about the consequences.

WHAT DO YOU MEAN MACROS?

Briefly, macros refer to the 3️⃣ main macronutrients being carbohydrates, fats, and proteins.  Each has a certain caloric value represented per gram.  For instance, 1g of fats = 9️⃣calories, 1g of carbohydrates = 4️⃣ calories, and 1g of protein is also = 4️⃣ calories.

So, if you eat a 🍔 burger with 30g of fat, 40g of protein and 25g of carbs, all you have to do is multiply those number by the associated caloric value per gram and boom! you have the total calorie number.  

Although, we’ve discussed before, all calories are not the same and 10g of sugar 🍦 (carb) does not affect the body the same weight 10g of sweet 🥔 potato.

Macro counting can seem like a daunting task 😳 at first but the benefits ✅ are huge for those wanting to lose weight, gain muscle mass, train for a competition, or increase optimal performance.  Hitting your total caloric intake for the day is great 👍 but if the ratios of Carbs to Protein to Fats is all ❌ jacked up, you may not be seeing the results you want, if any at all.

If you’re an everyday person who doesn’t really care about macros 🤷‍♀️ then I would still suggest counting your nutrient intake for at least 3️⃣0️⃣ days.  This would allow you to actually see what and how much of each nutrient is in a food item and if you are abundant or deficient in any area.

I just recently ❗️started tracking my own again to see how good I was only my total intake and to be honest, I was pretty spot on.  This is 1 part pure luck, but also, from years of experience counting my macros and weighing food day after day.  This process becomes a habit 🐾 just like anything else and really doesn’t take a lot of time.

WHAT’S OUT THERE?

With the advances of most tracking apps, all you really have to do is snap 📷 a photo of the food item eaten or added to the menu and enter the quantity.  Since I just started back tracking, I wanted to see what apps were out there and which ones had improved.  Search engines, app store, and some more revealed different results.  I downloaded and even bought 🙄 a few of the apps just to see how easily they integrated with different features.

Long story short, MyFitnessPal is still one of the best and easiest to use.  🔥 Did I mention the basic features are all FREE!  This is all I need and it works perfectly.  The only benefit for me, would be to pay so it does math for me.  The free version 🚫 won’t say you have 40g of carbs left.  

Instead, the app just shows you how many you’ve consumed (80g) and what your total for the day is (120g).  So you just have to know 120-80 = 40g left for the day.

I also, subscribed to Avatar Nutrition to see what a computer based macro coach was really like.  The price is $9.99/month and asks you to weigh-in and take simple measurements to adjust your macros accordingly.  

This seems like a cool 😎 concept and they use IIFYM style of “flexible dieting” to get your where you want to be.  The downside for me is they don’t have a “low carb” setting and I can’t adjust my ratios where I’d like them.

I decided to pay and subscribe with the program because you obtain access to the
Facebook group where you can chat with tons of other people and the founders directly.  To me, that’s worth the $10 alone.  Downside though, they only integrate with 1 specific macro counting app and it costs $2.99 to download. 

So, I downloaded it and became instantly frustrated with the process because it took so long to log food plus, the macro nutrients were off.  🏃Quickly, I went back to the App Store and downloaded MyFitnessPal again, logged my macros, and was right at home pretty easily.

FINAL WORD

All-in-all I don’t think most people need to weigh food for the rest of their lives.  I will, however, stress the importance of macro counting if you are trying to optimize your performance, lose/gain weight, or anything else on this spectrum.  You need to tailor specific ratios based on what you are trying to get out of your body and specifically, your body type.   Even if you’re not on one of these paths, it’s still a great idea to track for at least 30 days so you know

  1. How many calories you are actually ingesting
  2. Where you are abundant or deficient in macros/micro nutrients
  3. What ratios work best for your individual body type

Remember the one-size-fits-all approach isn’t the way to go.  Try a specific diet out, see your ratios first hand, and find one that works for you.  I would suggest:

  1. Seeing your doctor before trying anything out especially if you had or have any conditions.  Plus doing some blood work to see how the dietary changes really do affect you after 30 days.
  2. Looking for a Dietary Coach if you need help.

I truly hope this article helps.  Do you have a better way to track macros?  Do you even bother with it?

 

Happy Training 🙂

#JustMove!

 

 

Nutrition Hack Wednesday: Scaling Up

You’re time is so valuable, instead of having you read a review, I’d rather show you a super cool product.  So, Sol Fit Project has started to incorporate more and more videos for easy to see answers to your questions.  Check it Out Here.

This week I’m joined by Nick Mazzaroni of Paleoish Provisions to show you a device from Food Guru’s which will make food prepping, recipes, and so much more easier to calculate so you know exactly whats going in.

Click Here to check out:

Nutrition Hack #1

 

Happy Eating!

Nutrition Hack: 4 Must Halves While On The Road 

On the road again!  Over the next few months this is going to be a common theme for myself. Lots of road travel which means quick workouts, on-the-go grub, and sleeping when I can 😋.  

What this doesn’t mean is – an excuse to get crappy food, be lazy and say I can’t or don’t have time to workout.  Overall I know I can’t slack on all the awesome things I want to share with you during this time.  Remember, you don’t have to do anything,m… YOU GET TO! and can choose to or not to do something.  Establish your goals and then reread them at least once a week so you don’t lose site in the shuffle of your day-to-day life.

(Meal #2 at campsite!)
Here’s a small list I put together of 4 essential things I travel with or get while I’m on the road when it comes to food/nutrition.  

  • 1️⃣ Nuts/Trailmix: No, I’m not talking about the ones from the gas station with M&M’s, 🙄I mean nuts and possibly some raisins or dates, if needed.  I always have a bag of walnuts, almonds, or pistachios with me. Nuts pack a great fat and protein punch with minimal carbs which means you shouldn’t “crash” after eating. Plus, nuts are pretty easy on the go and you don’t have to worry about storing them any certain place.
  • 2️⃣ Water: This may seem like a no brainer or a “duh” moment, but when you’re traveling water is essiental.  If the worst should happen and you break down or have a long time between stops, staying hydrated is very curical.  Most of us pound tons of caffeine while driving which only further dehydrates us.  So get a Yeti or similar cup that keeps water cold even in extreme temperatures.  Also, try and stay away from leaving plastic in the sun or a warm car as this can become harmful for you to consume. 
  • 3️⃣ Bars: Although not the best things for you ingredient wise sometimes, these guys can come in real handy when you’re hungry and on the go or have no other source of food with you.  My favorite ones are RX Bars, Kind Bars, and Quest Bars.  RX Bars are minimal ingredients, stating no BS, Kind Bars are pretty health conscious and fat heavy, while quest bars are packed with fiber.  Depending on your diet, you may like all of them or none.

  • 4️⃣ Super Greens Powder Mix: I keep this brand around in case I haven’t been able to hit my greens for the day due to travel.  Super Greens has over 80% of your RDA for Vitamin A, 4g of fiber, and a probiotic blend.  Is it as good as the real thing? Probably not, but it’s definitely better than nothing at all… I think so anyways?!


—————————————————————————

    *Bonus: Healthy options for “fast food” if you need it.

    Clean Eatz

    If you have one near you, grabbing some meals and packing them on ice is a great option.  If you just need something quick then they can do that too!  With so many healthier options, 🌯🥙🍳🥕🥗 I don’t think you can really go wrong here. They provide you the macro content of each meal and are huge on portion control.  If you stick to the portion sizes you’re going to be just fine but start adding in extra sauces or sides and you can pack on calories quick.  Be smart and stick to their plan! 

     Full discloser, I will be doing some work with this company in the near future but I’ve been a costumer for well over a year which is why I enquirered to be more involved.

    Panera

    Some of their food options are fantastic while others are caked with sodium and are higher calorie options due to sauces or a sandwich concactuion.  Just check out their online menu first show you know what you’re getting yourself into.  I usually opt for a 🥗 salad with 2x meat and veggies with little else on it besides a clean dressing or just lots of 🥑 avocados instead. 

    Chik-fil-a  

    If there’s not any other option then I’ll opt for the inventors of the chicken sandwhich.  I’ll get a grilled chicken sandwhich and some nuggets with possibly a kale salad.  Is it the best? No, not really.  But it is a healthier choice then the other guys and that’s the point.  Make the best possible choice for your body, mind, and sol when you can.  They as well have an online menu so check it out so you know where the calories lie.  I love their sauces but they are definitely not a great choice because of the ingredients and extra calories.  So, use these sparingly if at all.

      —————————————————————————

      Remember to do what you can when you can.  Food shouldn’t be seen as a cheat but a personal choice.  Figure out what foods make you feel great and eat more of those.  Figure out the foods that don’t make you feel so great and eat less of those.  

      I hope you enjoyed this article.  If you’d like to receive more articleslike this by e-mail, subscribe to our newsletter on SOL FIT Project’s main page.  Click DISCOVER MORE and subscribe.  You can also sign-up through WordPress on the bottom of this article.  
      #GETMOVING

      Happy Training!

      Nutrition Hack: Avocado Seeds?

      Have you ever heard to eat the actual avocado seed and not just the avocado? Welp, if you have you’re way ahead of me because I always assumed the seed was not to be eaten.  *I have always used the seed only to help keep the avocado fresh when I’m not using the whole avocado. (See below)

      I was reading an unrelated article on wheat and came across an interesting find on avocados. I clicked the link which took me to realfarmacy.com and the headline said Avocado Seeds- Superfoods for Your Health and I was shocked.  I had always assumed the seed was in some way, toxic to humans or surely I would have heard more about the subject.

      THE CLAIM 

      Real Farmacy claims the seed contains oils, soluble fiber, and antioxidants. In fact, Real Farmacy says 70% of the antioxidants are found in the seed vs. the other 30% being in the skin and actual flesh of the avocado.  All they suggest you have to do is put the seed in a baggie and mash it up.  Then blend the seed to a fine grade in a food processor or other device. Now, you can sprinkle on any food item or add to a shake, maybe?

      “-Some find it soothing to gastric ulcers because the seed contains antioxidants in it known as phenolic compounds. These compounds contain antibacterial and anti-viral properties, which makes the seeds effective at preventing ulcers within the lining of the digestive system.” – realfarmacy.com

      And it’s not just Real Farmacy, I came across other sites with similar claims and lots of recipes for the seeds. BUT…

      NOT SO FAST.

      According to Health.com you SHOULD NOT CONSUME the seed of an avocado.  The body of evidence is very slim on this issue and on top of that, most of the research actually performed, uses the avocado seed extract.

      Straight from the California Avocado Commission, “The California Avocado Commission does not recommend consumption of the “pit” or seed of an avocado. The seed of an avocado contains elements that are not intended for human consumption.”

      I looked into other credible sources all saying the same thing, DO NOT CONSUME until more research is performed.  If you go onto pubmed.com and type in avocado seed some studies will show up but the related search button prompts you to search avocado seed toxicity.

      FINAL WORD.

      While I am not ruling anything out, new data and research in the future could shed more light on this subject.  For now, stick to the flesh.  Avocados contain good amounts of healthy fats, dietary fiber, antioxidants and so much more.  All of this can be consumed without running the risk of GI distress or other complications.

      All you need to do is crack one open, place on your favorite food, sandwich, or make some awesome guac which will actually have an awesome guac recipe as part of our Meal Prep Sunday this Sunday.

       

      Happy Training!

       

      *Bonus Tip:

      To help preserve an avocado if you’re not using all of it at once, cut the avocado in half and leave the side with the seed in it and place in a refrigerator safe container until you need it later.  Heads up though, even with the seed in the other half, browning will still occur pretty quickly but you should be okay for same day use.


      For more information you can check out:

      1. http://realfarmacy.com/avocado-seeds-superfoods-for-your-health/
      2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?Db=pubmed&term=avocado%20seed%20toxicity
      3. http://www.health.com/food/no-you-shouldnt-start-eating-avocado-seeds
      4. https://www.californiaavocado.com/faqs
      5. https://www.californiaavocado.com/blog/march-2016/is-it-safe-to-eat-the-avocado-seed

      Nutrition Hack: The One Green You’re Not Eating and Should Be

      Ok, hear me out on this one.  Today’s hack is all about the one green I doubt many of you are actually taking into considering.  WHAT IS IT? Well, it’s something you probably normally throw away or scoff at whenever you see it on your plate if your eating at.  This secrete ingredient is none other than… parsley.  Yes, you heard me, P.A.R.S.L.E.Y.

      WHY PARSLEY?

      If you follow us on Instagram (@sol.fit.project) you saw some of its amazing benefits for our Fun Fact Friday’s, Did You Know Segment. We have also been posting on our story, especially me (@lc.sol.fit) about how we’ve been incorporating Parsley into our everyday meals.  It is underrated herb but has such tremendous health benefits.  Here are just a few of them.

      Parsley contain over 100% of your daily needs of Vitamin A (101%), Vitamin C (133%), and an astounding Vitamin K (1230%) per 1 cup. (1)  It also contains:

      • vitamins: K, E, B6, B12
      • Thiamin, riboflavin, niacin
      • Calcium, Potassium, Zinc, Magnesium
      • Volatile Compounds (antioxidants) such as myristicin, limonene, eugenol, and alpha-thujene

      Parsley has been shown to have anti-diabetic and anti-carcinogenic properties, as well as, help with rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis.  Due to its vast nutrient content, parsley can also help strengthen the immune system and act as a diuretic. (2)

      HOW TO USE
      Parsley is a great add-on to any meal.  We love using it in soups, teas, on fish, or salads.  Lately, even adding it in the mornings to our cooked eggs and spinach has become a thing.  You typically don’t want to actually cook with parsley but just add some to the finished meal before devouring.  Cooking parsley could void it of the amazing nutrients you want.  A word of caution though to any who are pregnant.

      “It’s considered safe in normal food quantities, but large amounts or using parsley essential oil has not been studied enough in pregnant women to be considered safe.” –Dr. Axe

      Any with gout or kidney stones may want to be cautious as well because parsley contains small amounts of oxalates.  For normal people, this is no big deal but for those with these problems, special note should be taken when consuming any amount of parsley.  (1)

       ——————————————————————Add it to your favorite foods and let us know what you think.  Good, bad, or just not for you, leave a comment so we can see how it goes. 

      Happy Eating!

       

      Wednesday Nutrition Hack: Simple Hangover Remedy

      With most people celebrating this weekend or next week for Independence Day, SFP wanted to make sure you had a plan in case you wake up the next morning feeling like fireworks are still going off in your head.  Depending on several factors, even just a few beers or glasses of wine can leave us with that “foggy” feeling the next day so, we have a simple at home remedy for you.

      It’s important to remember hydration is key.  Water is your friend in times of hangovers but things like coconut water can be a great addition too.  Our nutrition hack to hangovers though is none other than… Matcha Tea.

      What is Match Tea?  

      Matcha Tea is a form of green tea using the whole leaf from the green tea plant instead of a portion.  By grinding up the actual tea leaves for use, Matcha Tea contains more ECGCs (catechins), polyphenols (tannins) and L-Theanine (amino acid) than green tea.  This leads to an increase in antioxidants, more micronutrients, and the L-Theanine increase may improve creativity, learning, and memory.

       “All together, matcha contains 137 times more antioxidants than green tea.”  – epicmatcha.com

      How To Make Matcha. 

      A cup of tea before all the raging begins to protect your body and a cup the next morning to help it recover seems like a great idea.  You can mix as little as 1 teaspoon in 1/2 cup water and take it down like a shot or add in other flavors like lemons, ginger, spinach, etc. and make a whole concoction.

      Here’s two recipes from Teaologists that will help get you off the couch and out the door the next morning.

      • Mix 1 teaspoon of Matcha with some coconut water and a pinch of salt. This will give you relief from headaches, thanks to Matcha’s caffeine. You will be re-hydrated by the coconut water and salt.
      • Therapeutic Matcha Smoothie – to make this, you need about 2 teaspoons of Matcha, 2 cups of water, a mango (a pear will also do), 1 slice of ginger, about 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 1 cup of kale or spinach. Blend all the ingredients and add honey/banana to taste. Add ice if you want or refrigerate the whole thing in a mason jar. Drink it throughout the day and the hangover will be gone for good.

      You can buy matcha tea almost anywhere but according to health.com…

      “Tea experts also warn that with matcha quality is key, and it comes at a cost. In other words, high quality, fresh, pure matcha is expensive. A low price tag can be a red flag for a poor quality product.” — Health.com

      … the DEAL may not be worth it.  This is one thing where you want to look for fresh, quality ingredients just like all other foods you eat over the knock off super savings.

      Foodies

      We’ve all woken up the next day, rolled out of bed, and grabbed a slice of pizza or headed to a local burger joint.  Although tempting, be sure and stay away from fried foods the next day because it can worsen symptoms and irritate the gut.  What should you look for instead?

      • Eggs
        • Contain cystein and taurine.  Cystein helps breakdown acetaldehyde (why you have a headache) and taurine boosts live function
      • Bananas, dates, leafy greens
        • High in potassium (electrolyte) and can be depleted during a hard night out
      • Oats
        • Contains minerals like calcium and iron and can help neutralize stomach acid

      Final Word

      Matcha tea does contain about as much caffeine as a cup of coffee which can sometimes make headaches and your body feel worse due to further dehydration, among other things.  So, be aware of the whole process.  The antioxidant affects outweigh the caffeine side affects for us but make your own decision and do your own homework.

      Try it and see what happens!  I’ve read several articles and spoke with a few tea nerds and they all agree.  It works.  Let us know if you try it.  Did it work or make you at least, feel better?  Leave us a comment below or on our social media pages (links at bottom) to get this conversation going.

      Happy Training!

      Cheers!!

      Cam