Posts Tagged ‘protein’

Actually, it is the one you consume right after your workout. After your work out your muscles are most sensitive to insulin.  Insulin is what causes your muscle to take up glucose from the blood storing it as glycogen.  Glycogen is the fuel that your muscles use.  So, consuming adequate carbs and protein after your workout allows you to recover faster which means your body is better prepared for the next workout.  I often discuss this with patients due to the fact they are working their buts off in therapy (at least in my world of sports physical therapy they do) so recovery is important and their body is trying to heal itself therefore adequate nutrition enhances this process, not to mention proper hydration which most people lack.  Even if you are not an athlete, recovering appropriately can mean a better day at work or playing with the kids later or the next day.  By consuming protein after a workout you can enhance glycogen replenishment by 30% and if you consume carbs with that you can double the insulin response which means more nutrients are able to be delivered back to the musles.  Generally speaking, you should consume a carb to protein ratio of about 2-3:1.  If you are doing longer duration endurance type exercise then a higher dose of carbs (4:1 ratio) is more appropriate.  Optimally this should be consumed within about 20 minutes after exercise but technically there is a two hour window post exercise.  Whey protein is the best choice because it is absorbed faster and the carbs should be simple sugar.  A cheap and easy mix is to purchase whey protein and mix it with generic kool-aide.  Mix and match your flavors to your taste preference.  Again generally speaking, a ratio of about 40 g carbs (sugar) and 15g protein would work.  Dosage can vary based on training intensity and goals, but that at least gives a geral framework and rationale s to why it is critical to get you post work out supplementation in.  So dont forget this critical piece to your rehab or training process!

Get Strong! Stay Strong!



June 2, 2010 (WPVI) — Consumer Reports is warning people who work out to exercise caution when taking protein shakes.

Consumer Reports says it purchased 15 protein powders and drinks mainly in the New York metro area or online and tested multiple samples of each for arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury.

RELATED: For the full report, visit

The results showed a considerable range, but levels in three products were of particular concern because consuming three servings a day could result in daily exposure to arsenic, cadmium, or lead exceeding the limits proposed by USP.  Consumer Reports says it found that three daily servings of the ready-to-drink liquid EAS Myoplex Original Rich Dark Chocolate Shake provides an average of 16.9 micrograms (µg) of arsenic, exceeding the proposed USP limit of 15 µg per day, and an average of 5.1 µg of cadmium, which is just above the USP limit of 5 µg per day.  Concentrations in most products were relatively low, Consumer Reports said, but when taking into account the large serving size suggested, the number of micrograms per day for a few of the products was high compared with most others tested.  The samples of Muscle Milk Chocolate powder we tested contained all four heavy metals, and levels of three metals in the product were among the highest of all in our tests. Average cadmium levels of 5.6 µg in three daily servings slightly exceeded the USP limit of 5 µg per day, and the average lead level of 13.5 µg also topped the USP limit of 10 µg per day. The average arsenic level of 12.2 µg was approaching the USP limit of 15 µg per day, and the average for mercury was 0.7 µg, well below the USP’s 15 µg-per-day limit. Three daily servings of Muscle Milk Vanilla Crème contained 12.2 µg of lead, exceeding lead limits, and 11.2 µg of arsenic. A fourth product, Muscle Milk Nutritional Shake Chocolate (liquid), provided an average of 14.3 µg of arsenic per day from three servings, approaching the proposed USP limit.

Cadmium raises special concern because it accumulates in and can damage the kidneys, the same organs that can be damaged by excessive protein consumption. And it can take 20 years for the body to eliminate even half the cadmium absorbed today.  “This is a highly toxic metal, and while there are some cases where decisions have to be weighed against relative risks, accepting that you have to be exposed to any cadmium at all in your protein drink after your workout is definitely not one of them,” says Michael Harbut, M.D., director of the Environmental Cancer Initiative at the Karmanos Cancer Institute in Royal Oak, Mich.

“When these toxic heavy metals are combined in a product that is marketed for daily use, that raises serious public health concerns, especially for pregnant women, children, and young adults,” says Burns, who has been a toxicology consultant to state and federal government agencies.

For most people, protein drinks are not the only possible source of exposure to heavy metals, but they are an easily avoidable one, since most people can meet their protein needs, help minimize exposure to contaminants, and save money by choosing the right foods.

Shellfish and organ meats such as liver can be high in cadmium, and some plant foods such as potatoes, rice, sunflower seeds, spinach, and other leafy greens can also take in significant amounts of the metal from the environment, due in large part to the use of cadmium-containing phosphate fertilizers, according to Bruce A. Fowler, a researcher at the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry.

Food and Drug Administration research suggests that foods such as milk, yogurt, eggs, poultry, and red meats are generally good protein sources that seem to contain little or no cadmium, lead, arsenic, or mercury. For perspective about the relative risks exposure to those metals can pose, consider the agency’s list of 275 hazardous substances at toxic waste sites: Arsenic, lead, and mercury rank Nos. 1, 2, and 3, and cadmium is No. 7, based on risks to people around those sites.  Being exposed simultaneously to a mixture of toxins can also potentially increase health risks, particularly when they target the same organs or systems, as some metals we detected do, according to Harbut. He says that this is the result of a synergistic effect, meaning the effects of two toxic substances together can be even greater than those of the sum of the two, and not enough research has been done to determine whether that occurs from multiple exposures to even relatively low levels of those heavy metals.

Greg Pickett, Founder of CytoSport, Inc. issued the following statement: “CytoSport is a family-run business built on a culture of creating products that are completely safe, effective and trusted by our loyal customers across the country. CytoSport’s devoted following of consumers includes high school, college and pro-athletes, coaches and everyday active people. It is our company mission to do everything possible to ensure that our products are superior in quality, reliability, authenticity and safety.

“We work to meet our very high standards in several ways. Our wholly owned and operated manufacturing and packaging facility is state-of-the-art. Additionally, our products are rigorously tested by both us and independent third party agencies including NSF International to ensure their safety and efficacy. NSF International, an independent, not-for-profit, non-governmental organization, is a world leader in standards development, product certification, education, and risk-management for public health and safety. NSF International is the recognized nutritional supplement certifying body for the athletic market, including the NFL, Major League Baseball, PGA, LPGA and others.”

Get Strong! Stay Strong! (and be aware)


By Phil Stevens

I don’t like Cutting Fat! Who does? But it ain’t as bad as people make it out to be.

Restriction, dieting, eating less then you need to sustain yourself, your training, your strength and hard earned muscle. No, its not fun, but in reality it isn’t that darn hard.

Not as hard as many make it out to be, and really unless your looking to get to extreme leanness its pretty damn easy and anyone who has been in the game any amount of time can tell you it’s a far cry easier then putting on an above average amount of lean mass or strength.

It’s not an experience I would call enjoyable by any enjoyable stretch of the imagination but I will share a few tips that I have employed and you can to make your next phase of cutting some pudge a lot easier and hopefully as well a lot more productive and in turn shorter.

It’s Just Food…

Mind set / a back bone. The number one thing I hear, and I just HATE hearing from people when I am cutting fat is “Gawd How Do you Do that? How do you stay so committed?” How do you not have the cake at a birthday party? How do you go from cramming anything and EVERYTHING you want plus some in your pie hole one week getting ready for a meet to not even a taste the next. Oh!!!! I cant do that the cravings are just too bad, I can’t handle them I have to have a little of this or little of that. To calm my nerves and what not.

COME ON!!!!!!! How weak are you. It’s friggin food, it not like you’re a crack addict. Show some spine, some will power. Food is an inanimate object and people have some how given it more power then it deserves. Social power, and in some cases physical power. Are you really going to sit there and tell me a HO HO has more spine then you? You had a craving and Just couldn’t resist the UNRULY all-powerful snack cake or cookie.

First thing you got to do is simply want what your goal is commit to it and just accept it. You don’t have to label the food BAD, or EVIL. “Bad Bad cookie” Just label it what it is food, and if its not on your menu right now for the goals at hand you just say?? Um NO and you don’t have it. It’s that easy, try it next time. Instead of dwelling on a simple mass of calories and letting it waste minutes of your day and cause undue stress from so called craving honestly ask yourself if you’re going to let a snack cake have more power over your actions then you.

Protein your Protein and Stay Hydrated!

This is nothing ground breaking and don’t claim it to be. I won’t waste your time going into all the specifics of why one should eat protein and stay hydrated if one needs to know that there are literally thousands of documents and articles written on the importance of each by myself and those much smarter then I in the field of nutrition. Look a few up, or ask some direct questions on the forum or the next Iron Radio Broadcast ( What I will do is give a suggestion I have used that couples the two habits of getting your protein in and staying hydrated.

A 1 Gallon diluted protein shake. Plain and simple every single day when I am cutting calories below my maintenance I make a HUGE 1 gallon diluted protein shake and sip on that all day long. I know the importance of getting a steady small stream of protein to keep amino rich blood and halting undue muscle catabolism, That and hydration need is increased even more so due to the lower general carb intake it is of vital importance to keeping as much lean mass as I can. Let alone the facts that both habits keep you satiated and performance up, waste products flowing out etc..

Just take a gallon container. I use an empty milk jug and add 3-5 scoops of your favorite protein dependent on your protein needs. The drink away al day to keep both these staples of dietary habits in check. As an option I add a bit of pure sucralose and stevia for sweetness and salt to keep one of my crucial electrolytes in balance during the periods of HIGH hydration and loss of sweat from adding activity.

Start Green

Going Green is the latest craze as I’m sure you’ve heard and it should be when dieting as well. But Im talking about a different green. Im not talking about recycling your used tampons so they can be used to make a new space aged coating for the space shuttle so it moves through the sky more efficient and doesn’t burn so much precious fossil fuels I’m talking Veggies.

Once again people give food, fuel too much power and they label certain foods as breakfast foods and certain ones NOT, and in general somehow veggies are in the not category. I say a food like veggies that we know is a great food for when trying to shed fat due to its high fiber and micro nutrients content then it should not only be a breakfast choice but a breakfast staple. We should start out one step ahead and have a nice big serving at the first meal of the day. Yeah, it aint hash browns, biscuits and gravy, or captain crunch but it is serving a HUGE purpose in or current goals eat it.

How I don’t care eat it as a side item like at dinner, or get creative and put it in a shake, an omelet or other. It really doesn’t matter just start he day with a BIG serving of the green stuff and see how it helps you shed the lbs.

Get Moving

Cardio, NEPA, whet ever get your butt moving do more then you were yesterday. Plain and simple start doing more simple activity then you were prior to trying to lose fat and it will add up. It doesn’t have to be complicated. It doesn’t have to be the next greatest cardio craze that promises to rip the fat off you, just do something. Preferably something you enjoy, find fun. If you can lose time, laugh and enjoy what your doing al the better and al the more effective it will be.

I prefer to mix it up, Play a sport, go for a simple walk, a hike, a bike ride, a swim, row, throw things, drag things. Take part in anything that simply has your doing something. It all counts, doesn’t have to be complicated and again it doesn’t have to, and shouldn’t SUCK. If I have something planned and dread doing it, or really hate the thought of it, FINE, I’ll do something else. Its OK, just do something, whatever you find the least Crappy.

Now if your just being a wuss and making excuses, then sure sometimes you have to just suck it up and do it and get it over with, It wont take long and wont be the end of the world. Likely once your done it wont seem like that much and you’ll be glad you did, but Just do a little more then last week, it doesn’t have to be a ton, it all adds up.

Kiss a Fish…

Or smell like you did. Taking fish oils will be the last little tip I recommend. Again, by now this shouldn’t even be something I have to suggest, and I definitely wont go into great detail as that’s be done again and again. When cutting fat even more so then in your daily routine I suggest you really load up on the fish oils, for a good size male I say 10-15 grams a day. I personally take 12-15 that’s aside from any fish I eat.

The benefits are vast from general health on the cellular level, to really aiding aches pains and lubricating joints while your on a hypo caloric diet. They also have the effect of aiding in fat burning, cognitive function possibly helping when you would be a bit cloudy from the lowered energy intake and raised expenditure. Thinning the blood a bit getting nutrients flowing in and out of bodily tissues more readily and aiding in cholesterol.

Get a BIG tub and start them TODAY make it a habit and if you have a fat loss phase planned you might think about starting to load up a bit higher a few weeks prior to get a bit ahead of the game.

Training Choices

I am going to keep this very brief and simple. Im my experience you have 1000’s of choices in how to train when you want to shed body fat. Literally any program can be used for both training to lose fat or pack on mass the biggest difference is the diet and your NEPA / Cardio. That said in my opinion you have two choices that are best and will lead to the greatest fat loss to lean mass preservation.

#1 GO heavy, brief and frequent. Get in pick one maybe two BIG compound moves do it hard and work up to the 90% zone or higher and get OUT

#2 Go Heavy, Go Long, But very infrequent

Get in the gym Hit it HARD again big compounds lifts work up to heavy sets in the 85%+ range. Hit he whole body and hit it hard. Then rest. Two simple bare bones but hard sessions a week is Plenty with this route.

These two are by far the best. Why? #1 you need to go heavy. Nothing is going to convince your body that it is a MUST to keep the precious lean mass that you have built like lifting near maximal loads. You don’t have the energy intake for lots of long hard sets and tons of reps, let alone the fuel to recover form such sessions. Blitz the body give it a reason to hold onto mass but do minimal muscle tissue damage and get out. Use the diet and moderate cardio and NEPA to target the fat loss.


These tips are easily applied real world basic bones tools anyone can use when they are looking to shed some body fat and they want to sway the success a bit more in their direction. Most people don’t need to worry getting caught up in the minutia that they do over complicating things and breaking things down to exact calories and exact macros. If they employ simple good nutritional habits and add on a few tips and tools like these they can make great success and likely make it further and faster toward their goal then if they had went a more invasive route.

Get Strong! Stay strong!




Have you ever heard the term “super-foods”? In keeping with other “supers” such as Superman, super powers and super human, it would seem that super-foods would be something that could help you – definitely not hurt you. They certainly are part of one of the most talked about current health crazes. But there are many foods that can help you feel better and get healthier, so why these? Just what are these super-foods and what can they do for you? Let’s take a look . . .

Have you ever heard the term “super-foods”? In keeping with other “supers” such as Superman, super powers, super human, and super-duper (ok, maybe not that one) it would seem that super-foods would be something that could help you – definitely not hurt you. They certainly are part of one of the most talked about current health crazes. But there are many foods that can help you feel better and get healthier, so why these? Just what are these super-foods and what can they do for you? Let’s take a look . . .

What are Super-Foods?

Super-foods are foods that are designed by nature to give you a balanced and healthy diet.  But, the true super-foods are jam-packed full of nutrients that help to treat a variety of health issues and have potent preventative powers.  And while the craze of super-foods is relatively new, the benefits of eating these foods have been in place for centuries. You may not know that some of them are even categorized as super-foods while in fact many are foods that you may already be eating and can help to treat or even prevent diseases like cancer and blindness.  You just have to know what ones to eat!

What are Some Super-Foods?

There are many super-foods, but these are some of the most common:

  • Beans (kidney, lima, etc) have lots of iron in them and are easy to cook and eat.  The best way to eat them is as natural as possible so that you get as many nutrients as you can (so, try not to just eat the ones in the can).
  • Blueberries are packed with vitamin C and have a ton of antioxidants that will help with your overall health.
  • Fish is great for helping you to feel more energized as well as having plenty of omega 3 fatty acids.
  • Soy is a great food that helps lower cholesterol and helps you to have a cleaner feeling body.  You can find soy in tofu as well as soy milk and oats and barley.
  • Fiber will help your body to have lower cholesterol as well and will lower blood sugar levels that may be running too high for your body.
  • Tea can help with many things but one of the most important is giving your body a boost with its important antioxidants.
  • Calcium helps with your bones and your teeth by making them stronger and last longer. 
  • Dark Chocolate is new to the super-food list and is probably the most loved one.  Recent studies have shown dark chocolate to have powerful antioxidants.

Why You Need Super-Foods

So now you know what super-foods are – but do you really need them all?

Well, the answer is yes. To keep your body feeling good and working well, it’s ideal to get at least a little of each of these super-foods on a regular basis. If you don’t like one of them, you can always look for an alternative that has the same benefits and can still give you what your body needs!

So give a super-food a chance, will you? Who knows . . . you might feel better than you ever had, almost super-human even!

Get Strong! Stay Strong!


Certain algae, especially the micro-algae spirulina and chlorella contain more chlorophyl than any other foods, and their chlorophyl content can be more than double depending on their growing conditions.  These aquatic plants are the most accepted and best known micro-algae at this time.  These primitive organisms were among the first life forms.  In blue green algae such as spirulina, we find 3 1/2 billion years of life on this planet encoded in their nucleic acids (RNA/DNA).  At the same time, all micro algae supply that fresh burst of primal essence that manifested when life was in its birthing stages.  Many people have instinctively began to turn to these original life forms for nutritional support.

Micro algae, in their dried state, – the usual commercial form of these products – we find, in addition to chlorophyll, the highest sources of protein, beta-carotene and nucleic acids of any plant food.  Their very large store of nucleic acids (RNA/DNA) is known to benefit cellular renewal and to reverse aging.  Too much nucleic acid however, can raise the uric acid level in the body, causing calcium depletion, kidney stones and gout.  Such problems havent  generally arisen because standard dosages of micro algae contain safe amounts of nucleic acids.  Another example of, more is not better!  The medical use of algae is not yet approved in the US by the food and drug administration, but many benefits attributed to them by doctors in Japan and elsewhere reflect their intrinsic and unique nutritional power (Hills 1980)).  In recent years, researchers have increasingly studied micro algae because they contain anti-fungal and anti-bacterial biochemicals not found in other plant or animal species.

Spirulina: contains special form of protein that benefits those with problems resulting from excessive animal protein, which does not assimilate well and further burdens the body with waste products.  Typically those who are overweight, diabetic, hypoglycemic, cancerous, arthritic, or suffering from degenerative problems often benefit from the relatively pure protein content in spirulina.  By eating only 10-15 grams daily of this form of protein the body normally becomes satisfied and animal protein is craved less.  In addition, the severe liver damage resulting from malnutrition, alcoholism, or the consumption of nutrient destroying food or drugs can be treated effectively by this type of nutrition.  Spirulina also protects the kidneys against injury that occurs from taking strong prescription medication (Yamane 1988).  Spirulina is also richly supplied with the blue pigment phycocyanin that has been shown to inhibit cancer-colony formation (Troxler 1987) and draws together amino acids for neurotransmitter formation which increases brain capacity (Hills Book Rejuvinating the Body, 1980).

Chlorella:  Another well known algal food similar to spirulina, but containing less protein , beta carotene and more than twice the nucleic acids and chlorophyll.  It binds heavy metals , toxins and pesticides.  Chlorella has been shown to stimulate interferon production, as well as other anti-tumor and imune enhancing activity (Kojima 1973, Day 1976, White, Komiyama)  Chlorella contains a greater quantity of fatty acids than spirulina.  About 20% of these fatty acids are the artery-cleansing, omega-3, alpha-linolenic variety; perhaps this is one reason chlorella has been shown to be so effective in reducing cholesterol in the body and preventing atherosclerosis (Hashimoto 1987, Sano 1987)).

Excerpts from Healing with Whole Foods: Asian Traditions and Modern Nutrition, Paul Pitchford, 2002

Get Strong! Stay Strong!


Posted by sandco on November 19, 2007

Don’t drink alcohol. Take vitamins. Avoid eating eggs. We’ve heard these pieces of nutritional advice for years – but are they accurate?

Not necessarily, say two exercise physiologists who presented at the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) 11th-annual Health & Fitness Summit & Exposition in Dallas, Texas. Wendy Repovich, Ph.D., FACSM, andJanet Peterson, Dr.P.H., FACSM, set out to debunk the “Top 10 Nutrition Myths.”

According to Repovich and Peterson, these nutrition myths are:

10. Eating carbohydrates makes you fat. Cutting carbs from your diet may have short-term weight loss benefits due to water loss from a decrease in carbohydrate stores, but eating carbs in moderation does not directly lead to weight gain. The body uses carbs for energy, and going too long without them can cause lethargy.

9. Drink eight, 8-oz. glasses of water per day. You should replace water lost through breathing, excrement and sweating each day – but that doesn’t necessarily total 64 ounces of water. It’s hard to measure the exact amount of water you have consumed daily in food and drink, but if your urine is pale yellow, you’re doing a good job. If it’s a darker yellow, drink more H2O.

8. Brown grain products are whole grain products. Brown dyes and additives can give foods the deceiving appearance of whole grain. Read labels to be sure a food is whole grain, and try to get three-ounce equivalents of whole grains per day to reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and stroke.

7. Eating eggs will raise your cholesterol. This myth began because egg yolks have the most concentrated amount of cholesterol of any food. However, there’s not enough cholesterol there to pose health risks if eggs are eaten in moderation. Studies suggest that eating one egg per day will not raise cholesterol levels and that eggs are actually a great source of nutrients.

6. All alcohol is bad for you. Again, moderation is key. Six ounces of wine and 12 ounces of beer are considered moderate amounts, and should not pose any adverse health effects to the average healthy adult. All alcohol is an anticoagulant and red wine also contains antioxidants, so drinking a small amount daily can be beneficial.

5. Vitamin supplements are necessary for everyone. If you eat a variety of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, along with moderate amounts of a variety of low-fat dairy and protein and the right quantity of calories, you don’t need to supplement. Most Americans do not, so a multi-vitamin might be good. Special vitamin supplements are also recommended for people who are pregnant or have nutritional disorders.

4. Consuming extra protein is necessary to build muscle mass. Contrary to claims of some protein supplement companies, consuming extra protein does nothing to bulk up muscle unless you are also doing significant weight training at the same time. Even then the increased requirement can easily come from food. A potential problem with supplements is the body has to work overtime to get rid of excess protein, and can become distressed as a result.

3. Eating fiber causes problems if you have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). There are two kinds of fiber: soluble and insoluble. Insoluble fiber can cause problems in IBS sufferers; soluble fiber, however, is more easily absorbed by the body and helps prevent constipation for those with IBS. Soluble fiber is found in most grains.

2. Eating immediately after a workout will improve recovery. Endurance athletes need to take in carbohydrates immediately after a workout to replace glycogen stores, and a small amount of protein with the drink enhances the effect. Drinking low-fat chocolate milk or a carbohydrate drink, like Gatorade, is better for the body, as they replace glycogen stores lost during exercise. Protein is not going to help build muscle, so strength athletes do not need to eat immediately following their workout.

1. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented by eating foods low on the glycemic index. High levels of glucose are not what “cause” diabetes; the disease is caused by the body’s resistance to insulin. Foods high on the glycemic index can cause glucose levels to spike, but this is just an indicator of the presence of diabetes, not the root cause.

Article adapted by MD Sports Weblog from original press release.

Get Strong! Stay Strong!


Everyone knows that eating right is important, but what to eat and when can be difficult and confusing. One of the areas getting a lot of attention recently is the topic of nutrient timing. When to eat what, to get the maximum benefit. Taking in the proper nutrients before, during and after exercise is critical to improving recovery and achieving goals. A 4: 1 carb to protein ratio is recommended for post exercise supplementation. That means for every 4 grams of carbohydrates you should have 1 gram of protein. Generally speaking, consume 40-50g high glycemic carbohydrate with 13-15g of whey protein post exercise. This should be consumed with in 2 hours after you stop exercising to maximize recovery. Your muscles are more sensitive to insulin, which transports nutrients to the muscles, during this time. This 2 hour time frame seems to be very sensitive, so get your nutrients in quickly.

Get Strong! Stay Strong!



Everyone knows that protein is an important part of nutrition.  Protein is necessary for maintenance, replacement and growth of body tissue especially muscle.  Protein is also important for making hormones that regulate metabolism, maintain water balance, protect against disease, transport nutrients, carry oxygen and regulate blood clotting.  Coupled with strength training, protein aids in delaying the effects of aging.  Adequate protein is important for both men and women.  Although ladies dont want big muscles (not that most can get them anyway), hopefully they appreciate the need for strong (not big) muscles and bones as well as all the previous mentioned benefits.  All protein is not created equal.  There are 3 main types; whey, caesin, and soy.  All are beneficial, but different.  Whey is fast acting and good for pre and post workout when you want to get it into the system quickly to enhance your recovery.  Caesin is slow acting and good for the rest of the day and before bed to sustain you during that period of fasting.  Soy is a good alternative for those who are lactose intolerant or those who dont eat animal products.  Typically the recomended dose is .8-1g/lb/BW.  Always consult a qualified professional for individualized advice.

Get Strong!  Stay Strong!