EatWell: Simple Suggestions from a BaySport Nutritionist

By Sheri Berger, RD

Staying hydrated is essential for good health. Here are five reasons why focusing on hydration is important:

1. It could help with weight management: It is very common to mistake thirst for hunger. Water helps to fill your belly without calories. Studies show that when participants drank a glass of water before a meal, they lost weight faster than those who did not.

2. It can make you feel more energized: Fatigue is one of the first signs of dehydration. The next time you feel tired, reach for water instead of coffee!

3. It may help prevent headaches: For some people, not drinking enough water causes headaches and dehydration is a known trigger for migraines. In a study on water and headaches, participants found headache relief within 30 minutes of drinking 2 cups of water.

4. It can improve concentration: Dehydration causes the brain to work harder than when we are well hydrated. One study found that when students brought water to their exam, they did better.

5. It is good for digestion: Drinking enough water prevents constipation. It also helps the kidneys and liver work better by helping to flush out waste products.

How much water should you drink every day?

We all know the common recommendation is to drink eight, 8 ounce glasses per day. This may be enough for some, but not sufficient for all.

Read about the many factors that affect fluid needs in this link:

Other than water, how else can you stay hydrated?

Fruits and vegetables are wonderful sources of hydration too! Learn more here:

Knee Problem? No Problem!

By Jinelle Jagoda

Knee pain is one of the most common complaints across all age groups. As injuries occur, people tend to become inactive… and stay inactive. Unfortunately, prolonged inactivity contributes to a myriad of health concerns including cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, muscle and bone weakness, weight gain, and increased difficulty in returning to an active lifestyle. Instead of allowing your knee injuries to keep you away from the action, find alternative ways to stay moving!

The good news is you have options.

Option #1: If you can’t perform your cardio activity of choice, choose a new one! There are many knee friendly cardio options such as biking, elliptical, stairmaster, swimming, and brisk walking. Some methods are friendlier on the knee joint than others, so be sure to ease carefully into the new activity to make sure it is the right choice for you.

Option #2: If cardio just isn’t an option for you, pick up some dumbbells. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends 2-3 days of weight lifting to improve overall strength and prevent loss of muscle mass. Avoid weight lifting exercises that may bother your knees and stick to the ones that are pain-free!

Option #3: Exercise other body parts besides the one that hurts. Knee injuries can be overwhelming, and it is tempting to wait to heal and become sedentary. However, there are a lot of simple exercises you can do that don’t involve the knee joint. Push ups, sit ups, planks, calf raises, and glute exercises are all great basic exercises that you can even do at home. Circuit training is an easy way to increase the intensity of seemingly simple exercises by picking a set of exercises and rotating through each one without rest. (Example: 25 crunches, 15 push ups, 1 minute plank, 25 calf raises, 30 second rest. Repeat!)

Option #4: Find little ways to add more activity throughout the day. If scheduled exercise is no longer an option for you, try squeezing in extra steps and movement whenever you can. Here’s how: opt to take the stairs; park far away from building entrances; occasionally walk around the office; take the long way to the bathroom or water fountain; and, walk and talk during your conference call instead of sitting at your desk. You can even take advantage of the extra time to do activities around the home such as cleaning and vacuuming, gardening or mowing the lawn.

Don’t let your knees knock you down! Find something else to do until you can get back on your feet. Continuing an exercise program will help to keep the metabolism and energy levels high, prevent weight gain, and make returning back to your original activity much easier.


About the author:

Jinelle Jagoda, M.S.
Jinelle received her undergraduate degree in Exercise Physiology at Baylor University and her Master’s Degree in Clinical Exercise Science at George Washington University. While in school, Jinelle worked as a graduate assistant in the exercise physiology lab at GWU, and taught yoga and Mat Pilates classes. After graduating with her M.S. degree, she moved back to California with her husband and worked in sports medicine physical therapy prior to starting at BaySport. She is also a certified ACSM Clinical Exercise Physiologist, ACSM Group Exercise Instructor, and 200 HR Registered Yoga Teacher. In her free time, Jinelle enjoys teaching yoga classes, running, rock climbing and backpacking!

Reduce Your Risk of Cancer: 5 must-have foods

By Sheri Berger

March is Colorectal Cancer prevention month. A combination of a healthy diet, regular physical activity and healthy body weight can lower your risk of cancer. Consuming a plant rich diet with a focus on variety is a great way to reduce cancer risk. No single food or nutrient will prevent cancer alone; it is the synergy of nutrients working together in the overall diet that provide cancer protection.

Here are five plant foods that are excellent to include:

1. Cruciferous vegetables are nutrition powerhouses that resemble a cross or “crucifer,” hence the name. Some of the most common varieties are Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, turnips, kale, collard greens, and broccoli. This magnificent vegetable group supplies folate, magnesium, fiber, potassium, vitamins C & K, and beta-carotene in the diet. There is strong evidence that cruciferous vegetables lower risk of colorectal cancer.

Tip: Cruciferous vegetables are versatile and easy to incorporate. Add leafy greens to smoothies, soups, sandwiches, wraps, or make them the sandwich wrap!

2. Grapes are an excellent source of the cancer fighting, inflammation reducing, and longevity associated compound resveratrol. In studies, resveratrol has been shown to block the development of skin, breast and leukemia cancer. The skins of grapes contain the highest levels of reveratrol, which may be associated with some of the health benefits of drinking red wine. For cancer prevention, it is recommended to only drink alcohol in moderation.

Tip: Enjoy grapes as part of a snack or add them to a leafy green salad to add a variety of texture and bit of sweetness!

3. Quinoa is a wonderful whole grain that is rich in fiber, protein, and antioxidants. A variety of healthful compounds in whole grains give this food group high potential for anti-cancer promotion. A cup of quinoa contains about 222 calories, 5 grams of fiber, and 8 grams of protein. Quinoa is not low calorie, but it is very nutrient dense and filling. Consuming a variety of fiber rich whole grains foods is important for cancer prevention, especially colorectal cancer.

Tip: Add a variety of vegetables to quinoa to boost the quantity without significantly increasing calories.

4. Flaxseed is an excellent source of lignins, fiber, ALA (plant form of omega-3), and vitamin E. A suggested serving size is 4 tablespoons of ground flaxseed which contains 150 calories and about 7 grams of fiber. The high fiber content gives flaxseed potential for helping to prevent colorectal cancer. Further research is needed, but flaxseed may also help to prevent breast cancer because of the lignan content.

Tip: To get the full nutritional benefits, consume your flaxseeds ground. Sprinkle them in smoothies, oatmeal, yogurt, salads, or muffin, bread, or pancake batter.

5. Beans are a member of the legume family, which also includes split peas and lentils. Legumes are excellent sources of folate and fiber, providing 20% of the recommended daily amount per serving. Fiber helps to control weight and it protects colon cells, helping to decrease cancer risk. Folate and phytochemical rich components of beans also show promise for anti-cancer effects.

Tip: Canned beans are convenient and nutritionally equivalent to dried, rinse with water to remove most sodium.


American Institute for Cancer Research fight-cancer/

Renee, J (2/18/14) Livestrong, Foods That Fight Colon Cancer. Retrieved from that-fight- colon-cancer/

Thomas, M (1/27/11) Livestrong, Quinoa Rice Nutrition. Retrieved from rice-nutrition/

About the Author:
Sheri Berger is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist 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 patient support, preventive 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. She has been certified in adult weight management since 2005. She belongs to the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics, California Dietetic Association, and the San Jose Peninsula District of the CDA. Sheri enjoys spending her free time with her family and she loves to run marathons.