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Archive for June, 2015

According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)’s Safe Defrosting Methods:

Food thawed in the refrigerator can be refrozen without cooking, although there may be some loss of quality.

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I was staying in Raleigh, North Carolina and the hotel has a deal where you can use the Alexander Family YMCA for free. Awesome! On my second day there, I decided to grab a protein smoothie.

Considering that it’s a YMCA (which makes me, at least, think “healthy’), the coffee shop was full of cakes, muffins, etc. There were some “healthy” choices too, but, ironically, no health information available on any of their food so you could make educated choices.

I ordered a small peanut butter protein shake, which, admittedly, was DELICIOUS, but let’s take a look at what’s in it and the overall nutrition information in it.

  • Plain protein powder, two scoops. 280 calories, 1 g fat (estimated), 50 g protein (estimated)
  • 3 tablespoons of Jif peanut butter (I only let him put two in mine): 285 calories, 24 g fat, 9.5 g protein
  • 1 cup milk (it looked like 2%, so I’m using that). 112 calories, 5 g fat, 8 g protein
  • 1/2 very large banana. 60 calories, 0 g fat, 1 g protein
  • Ice

Total for small YMCA peanut butter protein shake: 737 calories, 30 grams fat, 68 g protein

Since I only let him put 2 scoops of peanut butter in and only drank half of it: 326 calories, 11 g fat, 31.5 grams protein

I definitely believe that you are responsible for your own choices, but dang, places like the YMCA seem to really be working against us with their food offerings. I’m really disappointed in them considering how much they promote “healthy choices.”

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A Clean Eating magazine opened to a page with a dog's leg in the middle of it.

My boyfriend’s dog doesn’t think much of the magazine either.

For some points program, I was given a year’s worth (which I think it 10 issues) of Clean Eating Magazine. Constantly on the hunt for good recipes that are low in processed foods, I thought this would be a good fit. But, the magazine has so many flaws in it it’s honestly not worth reading it.

Some of my comments are below (note: I received a couple of issues at once, so I was able to really assess the magazine over a sample of more than one):

  • June 2015 issue, according to Alicia Rewega, Editor-in-Chief (page 5), is supposed to be easy issue, “so everything inside is simple to make with just a few quick steps…”  But when I actually looked at the recipes, most had 12-20 ingredients. I’m sure they are easy enough to measure out, but anything with that many ingredients isn’t “easy and simple to make” to me.
  • Clean Eating, although not always, is usually tied to fitness/bodybuilding. But the recipes in the magazine are very low protein, many with only 8-12 grams of protein per serving. This seems like audience confusion to me.
  • Pay 74-75 of the June 2015 issue has a weeklong meal plan, but it’s incredibly unrealistic. For example, Wednesday’s breakfast is 2 Dark Chocolate Cherry Hazelnut Energy Balls and 1 hard-boiled egg.  The Energy Balls are 151 calories for 2, and a hard-boiled egg is 70 calories. So breakfast is 221 calories. Um, seriously?  That’s not enough energy! You’d be starving in an hour!
  • It’s really hard to distinguish what is an advertisement and what is an actual article. There’s a very tiny “ADVERTISEMENT” note in light gray on the corner. This bugs me since this is my profession and making a clear distinction is really important from an ethical perspective.
  • In the May 2015 issue (page 21) asks the dietitians the best time to take vitamins. These dietitians clearly aren’t “up” on their research. Maybe they should read The Atlantic’s The Vitamin Myth: Why We Think We Need Supplements.
  • In the May 2015 issue (page 17 “Traffic Signals for Food” and page 25 “Run to Stay Young”), they report on studies with VERY low numbers of participants (30 participants? Are you kidding me?), which is an inherent flaw in nutrition and health research design and shows very little concern for quality science reporting. The staff should really read I Fooled Millions into Thinking Chocolate Helps Weight Loss. Here’s How. and then hire an actual science reporter before publishing studies.

I could point out more, but I think that’s enough to prove what I mean. This magazine has some serious flaws and I definitely don’t recommend it.

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