Archive for June, 2011

Bananas are Overrated

Everybody knows that bananas are the best source of potassium, right? Not so fast… Although they ARE a great source of potassium, that doesn’t mean that they are the BEST source… Please keep in mind that the point of this entry is not to get you to stop eating bananas. I just want to get you thinking about some of the information that is fed to us on a daily basis. For example, when people think Vitamin C they think oranges, but did you know that 1 yellow Bell Pepper has almost 4 times the amount of vitamin c as an orange? Yeah, I know. That’s the same reaction I had! 🙂 Wait, what was I talking about? Oh yeah, bananas…

Bananas come in different sizes, so it is hard to say how much potassium, or any other macro or micro nutrient is in “one banana.” The easiest way for us to compare multiple items fairly is to measure out the same amount of each. So, for this conversation we will use 1 cup.

1 cup of mashed banana yields 200 calories, 51gcarbs, 28g sugar, 6g fiber, 2g protein. This amount would contain 806mg potassium. That is a lot of potassium, but that is also a lot of sugar! Quick tip: if you are trying to lose weight, don’t suck down 28g sugar in one sitting! Next item…

1 cup of white beans yields 254 calories, 46g carbs, 19g fiber, 0g sugar, 16g protein, 829mg potassium. This is a much more balanced food and is a lot more nutrient-rich than banana. Next item…

1 cup sweet potato w/ skin yields 180 calories, 41g carbs, 7g fiber, 13g sugar, 4g protein, and 950mg Potassium. Less calories AND carbs than the first two, and contains… get this… 38,433IU Vitamin A! That’s almost 800% daily value! This is also a very strong anti-inflammatory food and is one of my favorites.

So what would I recommend when you are looking to add some potassium in your diet? Hint- not bananas, since you get the same amount of potassium in 1 serving of potato chips as you do in one banana! Drum roll please!…………………………..

Bok Choy! (Chinese Cabbage)

1 cup of boiled (shredded) Bok Choi has only 20 calories, 3g carbs, 1g sugar, 2g fiber, and 3g protein. Its loaded with 630mg potassium! Who knew! They also contain high amounts of vitamin A, Folate, and vitamin K. Bok Choy is one of my favorite veggies. There are plenty of ways to prepare it, and it is delicious just steamed!

Do you have a favorite way of preparing Bok Choy? Message me so I can share!

Quick note: I am expressing personal opinions here. Please contact your doctor before changing your diet. People taking certain heart medications must be careful about the amount of potassium they consume.

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Advanced Leg Circuit

This circuit takes you through 4 exercises with minimal rest. This is an advanced circuit! Please know your own limitations and train accordingly!

The rep ranges discussed are not all matching what is in the video. This was my 3rd set, and I was exhausted!

1st exercise- Single-Leg Touch-Down to Hop (10-15 reps): This is an exercise that helps improve your balance as well as your leg power. Stronger muscles will begin to fatigue and you will start to incorporate more and more muscle fibers. Perfect, considering you will need all the help you can get for the next one!

2nd exercise- Barbell Lunges (alternating): Pick a challenging weight for this one. We are working on strength here, so no need to go with higher reps. A weight that you can do 5-8 reps per leg is perfect!Dig through your heel and make your front leg do all the work! Neck Problems? Use dumbbells instead.

3rd exercise- Barbell Squats (Burnout): Same weight you used for the lunges, just squatting until your form goes to crap. We are using squats to continue the circuit and increase recovery and endurance. Do as many as it takes to fatigue. 3rd time around I stopped at 10… Back Problems? Don’t use any weight. Do SLOW body weight squats or use a leg press machine instead.

4th exercise- Alternating Power Step-Ups: (20 reps) Hold a medicine ball under your chin to help keep your chest up. This is another power exercise, but without the balance aspect. You are using whatever you have left in your legs to complete this one.

Have fun, and remember: you should only be competing with yourself. Not some other guy/girl in the gym. Not you 20 years ago. You, now. Know your limitations and remember that you are doing this to be healthy. Hurting yourself will not help you accomplish ANY goal…

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