BaySport Nutrition Tip by Sheri Berger, RDN – Smart Snacks

As preparations for the new school year begins, an important decision is what to pack for lunch. BaySport’s Nutrition Coach, Sheri Berger, RDN (Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist) shares a health tip for the entire family, whether they’re going to school or work.

Choosing SMART SNACKS throughout the day will help to keep you energized, focused, happy, and provide steady blood sugar. Choosing less quality snacks will do the opposite. SMART SNACKS provide fiber, lean protein, quality carbohydrates, healthy fats, and around 150-200 calories. Here are some great choices:

NUT OPTIONS:
• Two tablespoons of all natural peanut butter with 6 celery sticks
• One tablespoon of nut butter with a medium apple, banana, or other fruit
• One tablespoon of nut butter with 8-10 whole grain crackers
• ½ peanut butter sandwich on whole grain bread with apple or banana slices
• 8-10 walnuts or almonds with a medium apple or other fruit

BEAN & LEGUME OPTIONS:
• ¼ cup of beans, 1 tablespoon of cheese, and salsa on a whole grain tortilla
• ½ cup of hummus or black bean dip with cut up vegetables (carrots, celery, mini peppers, cucumber slices, cherry tomatoes, jicama)
• ¼ cup of hummus on whole wheat pita bread
• ½ cup of roasted garbanzo beans with 10 cherry tomatoes

DAIRY & EGGS:
• String cheese or one ounce of other cheese and a piece of fruit
• One cup of plain low-fat yogurt with ground flaxseeds and 3-4 strawberries
• One cup of plain Greek yogurt with two tablespoons granola and one teaspoon agave nectar or honey
• Two tablespoons goat cheese, dill, and tomatoes on a piece of whole grain bread
• ½ cup of cottage cheese with chopped fruit (berries, nectarines, peaches, etc.)
• Once hardboiled egg with a rice cake or whole grain crackers

MEAT & FISH:
• 1/2 can tuna or salmon with 5-8 whole grain crackers
• Three romaine lettuce wraps with nitrate-free cold cuts or other lean meat
• Two ounces smoked salmon on a rice cake or three whole grain crackers
• Six shrimp with cocktail sauce, celery, and carrots
• Two ounces of beef, turkey, or salmon jerky with cucumber slices

 

Learn more about Sheri Berger, RDN:
Sheri Berger is a Registered Dietitian having completed her B.S. in Food/Nutrition & Dietetics and a dietetic internship at Loyola University Chicago. Sheri has a diverse professional background that includes hospital and outpatient clinic support, preventative wellness programs, corporate wellness services, cardiovascular disease management, and working with seniors. Sheri enjoys engaging her clients in pursuit of their personal wellness goals and leading by example with her healthy lifestyle. Sheri has been certified in adult weight management since 2005. She belongs to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, California Dietetics Association, and the San Jose Peninsula District of the CDA. Sheri enjoys spending her free time with her husband and two daughters and she loves to run marathons.

Consumer Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis Devices: What to know before you buy

By Kelly Hood

With the rise of home health electronics, many people own a bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA) scale or handheld device to monitor body composition at home. Commercial BIA devices provide a relatively simple, inexpensive, and noninvasive technique to measure body composition. BIA devices work by sending a very low, safe electrical signal through regions of the body between plate electrodes; BIA scales do this through the feet whereas handheld devices go through the arms. The electrical signal passes quickly through water that is present in hydrated muscle tissue, but it meets resistance when it contacts fat tissue. The resistance, known as impedance, is measured and input into equations to calculate body composition, hydration status, and even bone density. Taking the measurement is easy, quick, and painless – but are the results accurate compared to industry gold standards?

Commercial BIA devices differ from one another in a variety of ways including body segments utilized for analysis, electrode contact points, body fat prediction equations, and cost.

Consequently, they can vary in their reliability and validity for different populations. For example, BIA scales only send a current through your feet and into your legs, missing out on a large portion of your body. Similarly, handheld devices only send a current through your hands and across your arms and chest. This can lead to over or underestimation of body fat, depending on one’s body type and gender. Also, depending on the specific equations used by each BIA scale, body fat results may not be as accurate for certain populations. Not all equations are the best fit for specific ethnic groups or body sizes, and most consumer devices use proprietary equations and do not directly display measured impedance.

A recent study conducted at San Francisco State University found that a consumer BIA scale had an error of ± 4.4% when compared to the industry gold standard of hydrostatic weighing. In addition, the scale underestimated body fat in males by an average of 2%. The consumer scale was found to be incredibly reliable both between days and between weeks, suggesting it is a reliable at home device. Further research needs to be done to investigate how sensitive it is to tracking changes in body composition. It is likely that the underestimation of male participants was due to gender differences in fat distribution. Males more commonly carry fat around the abdomen, which the foot-to-foot BIA scale used in the study may not have adequately registered. Alternatively, the specific equation used in the scale may not have sufficiently accounted for the fat distribution in males. Current research agreed with the study findings, revealing that BIA devices typically have a larger error range, ±3.5-4%, and become less accurate in individuals with higher BMIs. Additionally, hydration status of the individual can affect the measurement. To account for this and to ensure the most accurate results when tracking body composition over time, measurements should be taken at the same time of day under similar conditions. Thus, the accuracy of body fat measurements using regional BIA devices should be interpreted with caution.

To make better use of an at home BIA device, consider occasionally having your body composition assessed using hydrostatic weighing. This industry gold standard method for measuring body fat percent, with an error of ±1-2%, costs around $50 per test. Testing requires a trained technician and can be found at certain fitness clubs or local universities, including San Francisco State University. Measurements from gold standard methods will give a more accurate portrayal of your body composition, and an idea of how far off an at home BIA scale is for future use. The results from body composition testing can be used to identify health risks, personalize your exercise program or evaluate how well your current exercise and nutrition program is working for you, so it is important they are accurate.

References:

American College of Sports Medicine. Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription. 9 th ed. Lippincott, Williams, and Wilkins, Baltimore, 2013.

Heymsfield, S.B., Wang, Z., Baumgartner, R.N., & Ross, R. (1997). Human body composition: advances in models and methods. Annual Review of Nutrition, 17: 527-58.

Fields, D.A., Goran, M.I., & McCrory, M.A. (2002). Body-composition assessment via air-displacement plethysmography in adults and children: a review. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 75: 453-467.

Peterson, J.T., Repovich, W.E.S., & Parascand, C.R. (2011). Accuracy of consumer grade bioelectrical impedance analysis devices compared to air displacement plethysmography. International Journal of Exercise Science, 4 (3): 176 -184.

Boneva-Asiova, Z. & Boyanov, M.A. (2008). Body composition analysis by leg-to-leg bioelectrical impedance and dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry in non-obese and obese individuals. Diabetes, Obesity, and Metabolism, 10 (11): 1012-1018.

About the Author:

Kelly graduated with a double Bachelor of Science in Exercise Biology and Psychology from University of California at Davis. She recently completed her Master of Science in Exercise Physiology at San Francisco State University, where she conducted body composition research for her Master’s thesis. Kelly joined the BaySport Preventive team in 2015 to assist in the San Francisco Preventive Medicine Clinic and at biometric screening events across the bay. She is an avid runner, recreationally running marathons and local trail races across the bay. In her free time she enjoys, rock climbing, yoga, and exploring the great outdoors.

Guidelines for a Healthy New Year

By Giselle Birang

This year, move beyond the single statement resolution and form a list of actions. Consider the options below and commit to small daily changes. This can add up to long term healthy habits that can help you reach your goals; whatever they may be.

Here are tips for how to maintain your health year-round:

Sleep: Sleep is a time when the body recovers. Adequate sleep can benefit body weight, heart health, mental state and more. When sleep is limited, it can affect your health in a number of ways. According to the Mayo Clinic, “Numerous studies have found links between insufficient sleep and heart disease, heart attacks, diabetes and obesity.”

Do Now: Set a bedtime alarm to remind yourself to go to sleep and listen to it. Gradually alter it by 15 minute increments until you are achieving an hour more sleep a night.

Drink water: Water accounts for 60 percent of the body and is essential to every cell. Drinking water has many health benefits. According to WedMD, “Drinking water helps to maintain the balance of bodily fluids, energizes muscles, promotes clear and youthful skin and strengthens the body’s kidneys. WebMD states, “The number one cause of afternoon fatigue is dehydration.”

Do Now: Grab the bigger cup at the café and fill it with water in the morning at the same time as your coffee. Put it on your schedule to finish it at certain times throughout the day.

Eat well: Diet plays an integral role in managing health. What you eat can dictate how you feel, how well you sleep, your energy levels and your mood. According to WebMD, “A healthy diet gives your body the nutrients it needs to perform physically, maintain wellness and fight disease.”

Do Now: At a loss for what to cook? Sign up for four weeks of a meal delivery kit that serves healthful options. Once you’re used to cooking the meals they’ve prepared, you’ll have more ideas and more confidence to plan your own.

Move often: Similar to eating right, regular movement not only can help with weight control, mood and energy, but it is instrumental in combating disease. According to the Center for Disease Control, “Physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health. It can increase your chances of living longer and healthier.”

Do Now: Start or end each day with a 10 minute walk. Add 10 minute increments as you are able until you reach 30 minutes. Keep in mind, a brisk walk is more conducive than a slow stroll.

Take deep breaths: Shallow breathing is often a natural response to stress. Deep breathing promotes relaxation and stimulates blood flow to your organs. Alternatively, shallow breathing, often accompanied by stress, can suppress your immune system and leave you feeling anxious. According to Harvard Health Publications, “Deep abdominal breathing encourages full oxygen exchange — that is, the beneficial trade of incoming oxygen for outgoing carbon dioxide. This can slow the heartbeat and lower or stabilize blood
pressure.”

Do Now: Breathe in through your nose for a count of four, breathe out through your mouth for a count of six. Repeat this four times, three different times throughout the day.

Laugh: According to WebMD, laughter is thought to be similar to exercise. Dr. William Fry, professor of Psychology at Stanford University, California, claimed it took ten minutes on a rowing machine for his heart rate to reach the level it would be after just one minute of hearty laughter.

Do Now: Share something silly about yourself to a friend, attend a comedy show or listen to a comedy podcast.