Post about "Nutrition"

Antioxidants, Free Radicals, and Sports Nutrition

As you know, I am a physician. It’s part of my profession to keep abreast of what’s happening in medical /health research. Being retired helps, because doctors simply do not generally have the “extra time” to devote to the scientific literature.

But I do. And I love it. I am one of those individuals who really enjoys …brace yourself…chemistry. When I’m done here, you should be excited too, especially if you are interested in sports nutrition and antioxidants, though not necessarily in that order.

Sports nutrition is a vast industry with emphasis on optimizing PERFORMANCE. Off hand, I can think of quite a few categories involving sports nutrition:

* sports nutrition and supplements for athletes,

* sports nutrition and athletic performance,

* sports nutrition and body building,

* sports nutrition and endurance training,

* sports nutrition and special diets in a variety of sports,

* sports nutrition and strength training,

* sports nutrition for running, jogging, walking, skiing, swimming

* There’s even Rocky Mountain sports nutrition

* …the list is endless.

So far, no surprises, huh? Well, here’s one for you. Did you know that when you exercise intensively you INCREASE the free radical burden in your body? If you’re a serious sports enthusiast, you should know that.

But…the real news is what science is now finding out about that free radical burden of yours. You should pay close attention here.

Suddenly, chemistry gets real personal.

Everyone of us has, what may be called, our antioxidant protective capacity. That means our bodies normally utilize antioxidants to protect us against the harmful impact of free radicals.

First of all, what are antioxidants? They are molecular substances which offset free radical damage to the body. Antioxidants, “quench” free radicals (for lack of a better metaphor) neutralizing their damaging effects on the cells of the body.

* Antioxidants are found in foods such as cranberries, green tea and even chocolate.

* Antioxidants are found in vitamins such vitamin C and E.

* Antioxidants are found in carotenoids such as beta-carotene.

* Antioxidants are found in many substances supplied by the body such as glutathione.

* Antioxidants are found in many herbs and enzymes.

The impact of antioxidants is boosted by glyconutrients to offset free radicals in your body…and, as a result of your athletic exertions.

Antioxidant capacity must be provided in your sports nutrition regimen or you could be “robbing Peter to pay Paul” with your workouts. As you will see, without a glyconutrional presence in your sports nutrition, the healthful gains made by your physical workouts will be offset by your own free radical burden.

Free radicals, sports and sports nutrition

Free radicals are those chemical species which contain one or more unpaired electrons, capable of independent existence. They form in the body due to a variety of reasons as offshoots of cellular activity or as products introduced to the body from the outside.

As an analogy, think of running a car engine as the cellular production
and the car emissions a the free radical production. The engine produces products which cannot stay inside the car without further damage. They simply must be neutralized and expelled.

Free radicals form and cause damage by reacting with many substances in your body. It is estimated that upwards of 200,000 free radical attacks occur in our bodies daily.

When free radical damage is done, the body can remove the compounds formed by its cellular repair system. However, if the body cannot handle the free radicals (with antioxidants for example), nor remove the compounds, then disease can be the result.

Contrary to popular opinion, free radicals do not circulate throughout the body. The half-life of most free radicals varies in a range of a few nanoseconds to about 7 seconds duration. That means they will react within the “neighborhood” (a few Angstroms or microns near where the increase in free radicals occurred) …organs, connective tissue, circulatory or nerve tissue, bone or lymphatic material are all candidates for free radical attack.

Wherever they form, they will damage the surrounding areas, unless prevented by the body…So the body does NOT have the luxury of just filtering away any circulatory fluids to find the free radicals. The body’s defense systems must be…well…fairly omnipresent to neutralize the effects of free radicals. The antioxidant protective system must be healthy.

Since they are highly reactive substances, they react with all sorts of cell elements readily. But, when they do react with your body cells, they can damage the cells and even kill them. Often, the damage from free radicals can CHANGE the cellular structure enough to cause DISEASE such as cancer, diabetes, arthritis, heart disease and a host of others.

The type of disease that occurs is dependent upon which of the free radical defenses in the body weren’t functioning properly and where the free radical attacks occur.

The body has pretty sophisticated antioxidant defense systems. But, the body CAN get overwhelmed in its antioxidant protections against such free radicals…

Indeed, unless antioxidant enhanced sports nutrition (with glyconutrients) are used to offset the increased free radical burden, the BODY will suffer as a result of intensive sports training, stress, and competition.

Glyconutrients VITAL to sports nutrition …

Studies comparing marathon runners who did and did not take glyconutritional sports nutrition supplements were undertaken. The results were reported by the Proceedings of the Fisher Institute For Medical Research ( August 2003, vol.3, no.1). The results “demonstrated strikingly different patterns.” Antioxidant protection appeared to be powerfully enhanced against free radicals with glyconutritional supplementation. Thus, the body was protected for several days after the marathon run.

However, when glyconutritional sports nutrition was NOT used, the damaging effects of the free radical burden appeared to remain in the body for about five days. Thus, the subject “consistently excreted higher concentrations of free radical byproducts…” as compared to that of the glyconutritional subject. It should be emphasized that the subject studied WAS TAKING other antioxidants, though not glyconutrition. Despite that fact, the above cited results were obtained.

That’s another way of saying that when glyconutritional supplements were not used, the free radical burden upon the body was not lifted. Antioxidant protection does appear to be (significantly) strengthened with glyconutritional sports nutrition. Such antioxidant protection appears to be of benefit for athletes overall, including training, stress, competition and dietary issues.

The glyconutrional revolution in sports nutrition and therapy is just beginning. More studies are being done. More results are coming in concerning free radicals and the capacity of the glyconutrients to boost antioxidant affect against free radicals.

Sports nutrition is about to see a new revolution…

Better still. I believe that it is quite probable that, with glyconutrition, sports PERFORMANCE is about to see a revolution in al fields.

5 Fast Fat Loss Nutrition Switches

All of us, myself included, are not really good, at the deprivation style of nutrition and burning fat. I don’t really have to tell you what is bad for you and what you just shouldn’t eat because for the majority of people out there – you already know! The problem is in the way we try to deny ourselves those sweet and salty treats!Whenever we simply stop doing something cold turkey and that includes eating or drinking a particular food our brain just sees it as something we can’t have. Not only does this flick a switch in 99.9% of men that fights this principle just out of spite, but it also makes us feel that we are missing out on something that we like or even love. This is a strong emotion and extremely hard to control.With this in mind, the big buzzword that is getting a lot of attention when it comes to better nutrition is SWITCH! What this means is that instead of stopping something outright and just hoping to fight the cravings and emotions with outstanding willpower, you actually replace it for a better option! It is very much like quitting smoking and where many successful people use alternate methods to keep their hands busy while quitting. This behavior switching technique can often make a world of difference as opposed to going cold turkey.Same goes for nutritional choices. Don’t try to quit something outright but actually substitute it with some better options. Try these five tips below to get you started on your way!Fat Burning Nutrition Switch 1:Leave desserts off the breakfast menu! Now I don’t mean that people are having ice cream and chocolate for breakfast although sadly, some people do! What I mean is that when we really look at the ingredients in some of our most popular breakfast cereals and other common options, you soon realize that they are better off in the dessert bar! Lose the sugary cereals, sweet muffins, fat filled bagels and croissants and look at options like a good omelet, high fiber/low sugar cereals, yogurt, smoothies and plenty of fresh fruit for starters.Fat Burning Nutrition Switch 2:Monitor your eating schedule. Personally, I see no value in the arguments that eating after 7 or 8pm causes you any grief whatsoever. Yep, I said it! It is not eating after this time that causes you to gain fat; it is the rubbish that we binge on after these times that causes the problem! With this in mind, you can stop late night binges by eating a larger lunch and then having dinner that little bit later.Fat Burning Nutrition Switch 3:Lose the processed food and go natural as often as you can! Processed and modified foods or carbohydrates are just plain bad and are often stripped of real nutritional value. Try your hardest to replace these foods with nuts, vegetable or fruits. Examples here are pretty straight forward; when eating red meat, hold the fries and add some extra “trees” or a salad. Instead of a calorie filled chocolate muffin or Danish on your morning coffee break why not grab a handful of nuts? And even though it is an old favorite, switch the eggs on toast to eggs flavored with parsley or spinach and then finish it with an apple!Fat Burning Nutrition Switch 4:You don’t want sugary drinks after a workout! This one is crazy! You go to all the effort of a hard workout, burning anywhere from 250 to 800 or even 1000 calories and then guzzle down a sugar filled energy drink, soda or juice and wipe out most or even all of your hard work in just a minute or two! You don’t need it and it’s a piece of marketing genius!Fat Burning Nutrition Switch 5:This one should go without saying, but do not just minimize the junk food in your house, but hide it! We are visual people and will suddenly get hungry when we see a nice yummy chocolate bar, packet of crisps or a stray dough-nut left around the house or fridge in full view.So then, you want to remove as much junk food as you can from the whole house. But again, in both the light of not totally depriving yourself of sweetness and also keeping the rest of your household happy, feel free to keep some! However, keep them in a dark part of your pantry and make sure that you have plenty of bowls and containers of healthy, ready to eat foods like fruit and nuts. They not only taste great but are so good for you. Just get them in your eye line!Here’s one last bonus switch for you! Employ your own nutrition expert – YOU! Stop listening in hope at all the latest craze diets and instead home-school yourself on the foods you eat for at least 2 weeks. Note down everything you consume for that period and really open up your eyes to all the foods and drinks that are out there. Stuff you have never even tried before is a perfect choice! Eat the recommended servings and keep a good eye on the calorie counts and see how you feel and what happens over the two weeks. You will come up with some great wins simply and effectively that will change your whole diet.