Category Archives: Nutrition

How can I track what I eat in a day?

Tracking what you eat during the day allows you to inventory what you eat.  and helps you to decide what to eliminate or continue in your dieting habits.  Consider food tracking like budgeting your money.

You wouldn’t want to spend money on useless things especially when you’re planning on taking a vacation at one of your “dream getaways.”  Likewise, you don’t want an intake of empty or excessive calories because it puts you at risk to gain weight.

The United States Department of Agriculture has developed a dietary tracking tool called SuperTracker via their website:  www.choosemyplate.gov.

With this tool, you can track your food intake and physical activity.  You can also personalize your goals and there is a journal feature within the app.  You can also create office groups so that others can use SuperTracker together.  Healthy eating office challenges can be developed and reports can be run regarding food and physical activity.

SuperTracker can help you plan, analyze, and track your diet and physical activity. – Click here to go to SuperTracker

Is coffee good for you?

Up to 400 milligrams (mg) of caffeine a day appears safe for most healthy adults. This amount of caffeine equates to about four cups of brewed coffee. (Mayo Clinic, 2014)

However, if you are sensitive to caffeine intake or you consume more than 4 cups of coffee a day you may experience these side-effects:  insomnia, restlessness, nervousness, irritability and fast heartbeat. (Mayo Clinic, 2014). Talk to your doctor if you have concerns about caffeine consumption being safe for you.

What compounds the negative impact of coffee is if you add sugar to your coffee.  The American Heart Association recommends 9 tablespoons of added sugar per day for men and 6 teaspoons of added sugar for women.

Added sugars are sugars and syrups that are put into foods during the preparation or processing of foods/drinks.  They are also sugars added to foods such as granulated sugar.  Natural sugars are found naturally in foods such as fruit (fructose) and milk (lactose). (American Heart Association, 2014)

If you are consuming 4 cups of coffee while adding 2 tablespoons of sugar to each cup, then you are already at 8 tablespoons of added sugar for the day.

There are some steps you may take to reduce your consumption of coffee:

  1. Identify what triggers you to want coffee. For example, if you just came out of a stressful meeting and want a cup of coffee, then stress may be the trigger for you to drink coffee.  If stressed, go for a walk outside instead of drinking coffee.
  2. Go decaf. Decaf coffee’s taste and look similar to their caffinated counterparts. Be aware of how much sugar you add.
  3. Gradually cut down. Start with eliminating your 3 o’clock coffee break.  You can recharge by stepping outside and walking for 5 minutes while breathing deeply to maximize your oxygen intake.

In terms of money, if you are spending $4 a day on 2 cups of coffee then you are spending about $20 a week and about $1000 a year!  If you would’ve invested this $1000 in an Index 500 Mutual Fund back in May, 2010 that money would’ve doubled by 2015.  (Morningstar, 2015).

Sources:

American Heart Association. (2014). Added Sugars.

Mayo Clinic. (2014). Nutrition and Healthy Eating.

Mayo Clinic. (2013). Stress Management.

Morningstar. (2015). Vanguard 500 Index Inv – Growth of $10,000.

Why am I always hungry at office?

Are you eating breakfast?  Research studies from the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) has suggested that non-breakfast eaters were generally hungrier later in the day and ate more food at night which may lead to metabolic changes and heart disease.  The study can be found by clicking this link.

Is something triggering the eating such as stress?  Do you have an impending deadline at office that is making you jittery?  Try to determine what is triggering your desire to eat.  Once you can determine this, you can manage the stress rather than consuming empty calories to make you feel better.

The Mayo Clinic has indicated that, sometimes, the strongest food cravings occur when you’re at your emotional weak-point.  In this situation, you may turn to food for comfort when facing a problem, feeling stressed, or feeling bored.   This can sabotage your weight-loss efforts and often leads to overeating high-calorie, sweet and fatty foods.

Please see the Mayo Clinic article here.

How can I snack healthy at office?

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics has produced an article listing the keys to healthy snacking.  In summary:

  • Avoid the temptation to eat when bored or stressed out. Snack only when you feel hungry.
  • Don’t eat from multiple serving packaging as this can lead to overeating. Use single-serve containers when possible.
  • Plan ahead before the day begins. Keep a variety of nutritious snacks on hand.

The article also lists various snack suggestions.  This information can be found at:

Link to Snack Suggestions