Mega Protein

Today is Wednesday, March 5th

The question of the day is:

How much protein is too much?

There is no upper limit set for protein intake by the dietary reference intake standards, however, I believe we need to use our God given eyes, ears and brains once again.  Any food in abundance can be harmful (see previous blogs).  Many people forget, that any excess calories that are not utilized in the body will be stored as glycogen or body fat.  A big mistake I often see are with women trying to lose weight is when they drink a protein shake or chocolate milk after a “workout,” and the”workout” is usually less than 1.5 hours, thus not requiring excess protein or calories.  Why?  Because usually they are just running or on an elliptical machine or something similar and did not ‘exhaust’ their bodies.  Most burn at least 200-400 calories working out (depending on their weight and intensity) which is great, but then they put calories right back into their bodies with the drinks.  I also find many of the gadgets over-estimate calories burned so be careful.  If you are working out, using protein supplements, and not losing a good amount of weight, you may want to consider dumping the supplement.

Protein metabolism yields nitrogen and nitrogen is not stored in the body, and is excreted through our kidneys.  For those with compromised kidneys, high levels of nitrogen are not good and protein intake should be moderated.  Even though my kidneys are not compromised, why would I want to stress them out daily by overeating protein?

I have said before, we are all as different as our fingerprints so no one way of eating is best for everyone.  Some people’s bodies metabolize fats and proteins better than carbohydrates (diabetes) and some people are what I call ‘carbo burners’.  What makes this especially difficult is when one person in the family burns carbohydrates well and the other burns proteins and fats better.

Quote of the day:

“Those who think they have not time for bodily exercise, will sooner or later find time for illness.” – Edward Stanley, Earl of Derby (1826-1893), The Conduct of Life address at Liverpool College December 20, 1873.

Take Action Today:

Use your eyes and brains today. Watch how much protein you are eating, how much fat along with that protein and if you think it is enough or too much.  How did you feel 1-2 hours later?  Does exercise make you feel better? Get that journal out we discussed at the 1st post of this blog, and practice intelligent eating and add some exercise.

“The Diet Book Revue”

Today is Monday, January 20th – celebrating Martin Luther King Day!

On stage today:  Read carefully and think

Act 1: 

I consider myself a reader, and as a dietitian of 30+ years, I have read numerous “diet books” and books on various topics for enjoyment.  My friend however, is what I would call a “Superman Reader”.  His comprehension is faster than a speeding bullet, his analogies quicker than lightning with insight more powerful than a locomotive.  As leader of our book group, he encourages us to read every word closely and think about what the author is saying.  I have found this most helpful, especially when digging through diet books. 

Act 2:

Diet books are not all bad and many of them have truly changed people’s weight or lifestyle for the better.  There are also blatant lies in some of them.  For example:  In a quite popular diet book, the author writes that 4 oz. of fish = 100 grams of protein!  In reality, 4 oz. of fish is approximately 28 g of protein (1 oz. = 7 g).  We ought to be very careful when reading and even more careful not to hop on any bandwagons or blindly follow trends or our friends. 

Act 3:

One man’s meat is another man’s poison.  Every person metabolizes food differently, has different stress levels, diverse sleep patterns and raised in a particular environment. Philosophy makes a difference too. Man ought to figure out for himself what foods fit his/her own constitution the best, not what the “experts” promote.  I encourage my patients to play “Sherlock Holmes,” and journal the different foods they eat and how the food sat in their guts.  If eggs don’t sit well in the morning, try them at night.  By journaling, you will end up with a nice list of foods that make you alert, mindful, groggy or nauseated.  I know cilantro, tomato sauce and eating eggs in the morning bother me, but I can eat eggs at night, tomato sauce before 2:00 and can never cilantro unless I “pay for it”.  If you have diabetes, check your blood sugar before a meal.  Note the content of your meal and then check your sugar 2 hours after your meal.  See how the meal affected your sugar and energy level.

Tip or Quote of the day:

“One Man’s Meat Is Another Man’s Poison”

Take action today:

Be your own detective.

Journal your food intake for a few days.

Note how certain foods affect you.

Read print carefully.