4 Grab-And-Go Meals To Shut Down Your Hunger

grab-and-go meals to shut down your hunger

Life is busy! Some days there’s just no time to sit down to eat. But that’s no excuse to skip a meal. Eating regular meals and snacks is vital to maintaining a healthy weight, feeling alert, and keeping healthy blood sugar levels already within the normal range.*

When your commitments are scheduled back-to-back, prepare one of these 4 quick and healthy grab-and-go meals:

1. Pita Pocket Salad

Pita pockets are on of the ultimate grab-and-go meals! With the right ingredients on hand, you can make this satisfying sandwich in under three minutes! Here how:

  1. Open the pita into a pocket
  2. Stuff with fresh salad greens
  3. Throw on a lean source of protein, such as sliced chicken breast or tofu cubes
  4. Top with a healthy dressing, such as tzatziki, hummus, or guacamole

image-pgx-blog-point-20160502 2. Hard Boiled Eggs and Veggies

Eggs are a rich stash of nutrients, including protein, choline, iron, and vitamins A and D. When you hard boil them, you get a satisfying, portable meal item. Pair hardboiled eggs with fresh vegetable sticks, such as carrots and cucumbers, for added fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

3. Oatmeal Parfait Mason Jars

Oatmeal isn’t just for breakfast—although it sure makes a good one! Mak Blog-PGX-20160407-Lister-4-Quick-&-Healthy-Meals-You-Can-Eat-on-the-Go e oatmeal one of your go-to grab-and-go meals by stocking your fridge with oatmeal parfait mason jars. Simply combine these ingredients in a bowl:

  • ¾ cup Greek yogurt
  • 1/3 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tbsp. chia or flax seeds
  • 2 tbsp. soy milk

Pour half into a jar, then top with 2/3 cup fresh or frozen berries, and the remaining oat mixture. Store in the refrigerator until you need a meal on-the-go.

 

image-pgx-blog-point-20160502 4. PGX Protein Shake

Protein drinks are one of the easiest ways to satisfy hunger while commuting or running errands in your vehicle. Try this recipe for Nut Butter Chocolate Smoothie. It’s made with **PGX® Satisfast™ Rich Chocolate, which contains natural source whey protein.

No matter where you eat, make sure all your meals supply enough protein and fiber to keep you full and on track.

*This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

**Drink additional water (8 fl. oz.) after ingesting PGX®. If you are taking medications, take one hour prior to or two hours after taking PGX®.

 

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

Two Amazing Stretches You’ll Fall in Love With

image-BLOG-PGX-Two Amazing Stretches You'll Fall in Love With-20160518(1)

Stretching is an important part of a cool down routine as during exercise, our muscles become fatigued and tighten. Here are two amazing stretches that can easily be incorporated into any post-exercise cool down:

image-pgx-blog-point-20160502 1. Hip Flexor Stretch

When you’re in a standing position, your hip flexors lift your leg to step up onto something. If you’re lying down, your hip flexors can lift your legs or lift your torso to sit you up. Your hip flexors are made up of muscles such as your iliopsoas (psoas muscle and iliacus).

Keep these flexors flexible to enjoy continued back health!

How to Stretch Your Hip Flexors:

Kneel on the floor (with legs bent), and rest your shins on the ground. Then, take one leg and lunge forward so that the leg is bent at a 90 degree angle. Ensure your knee is not going over your toes. Watch the below video below from

Watch the below video below from Sam Visnic on how stretch your hip flexors.

 

image-pgx-blog-point-20160502 2. Hamstring Stretch

The hamstrings are made up of three different muscles: biceps femoris, semitendinosus, and semimembranosus. This muscle group is generally known for knee flexion and hip extension. Tight hamstrings are a common discomfort.

How to Stretch Your Hamstrings

Note that you’ll need the help of a friend for this stretch!

Start by lying on the ground, legs straight. Lift one leg straight up, and with the help of a friend, have them hold your weight (so your leg can relax) and push gently until it is uncomfortable to go any further. You can hold this stretch for 45 seconds to 1 minute before switching legs.

Watch the below video by Expert Village on hamstring stretching.

 

Things to Keep in Mind

Studies have shown that static stretching before exercising may not be beneficial and can lead to injury. When you’re gearing up for a good stretching session, do it after your workout as part of your cool down, or before you’re getting ready for bed. As an added mental bonus, just 10 – 15 minutes of stretching will help to relax and calm your mind!

If you ever feel as though you have pulled or strained a muscle, remember not to stretch it. When you strain a muscle, you’ve likely over-extended it, so re-extending it with stretching will have a negative impact on your recovery.

According to fitness expert Peggy Hall, “Stretching increases your blood flow and circulation for a healthier body and sends oxygen to your brain for a clearer mind and sunnier moods.” [1]

References:

[1] Usigan, Ysolt. “6 Good Reasons You Need to Stretch.” Shape Magazine. N.p., n.d. Web. 09 Mar. 2016.

 

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

5 Killer Workout Snacks You Need to Try

image-PGX-BLOG-5 Killer Workout Snacks You Need to Try-20160512

Fuelling up before a workout can help you get the most out of your gym session, bike ride, or time on the running track. The right kind of pre-workout snacks can keep hunger and fatigue at bay so you can get through your workout. Smart snacking can also help minimize muscle soreness, support healthy immune function, and may even maximize muscle growth.*

image-pgx-blog-point-20160502 Snacking is Not One-Size Fits All

What constitutes smart snacking is somewhat contentious, however, with athletes and trainers, and even dietitians and nutritionists quibbling over what’s best to eat before exercising. In part, this is because different types of exercise place different demands on the body and, thus, respond differently to whatever we eat beforehand. Additionally, every individual has their own quirks of digestion and metabolism, meaning that what works for one person might not have the same results for another.

The Basic Guidelines

Does this mean it’s anyone’s guess, then, as to what to eat before a workout? Well, not quite. There are some key tenets that do seem to apply across the board, such as:

  • Avoiding large amounts of fiber and dairy just before a workout
  • Choosing easily digestible carbohydrates (such as from fruit)
  • Including a little monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fat
  • Eating a snack containing some protein (but not too much)

These basic rules help to keep low blood sugar at bay, minimizing the likelihood of fatigue and poor exercise performance.

image-pgx-blog-point-20160502 Fats and Protein

Healthy fats provide energy and can support a normal inflammatory response, which may help prevent muscle soreness post-workout.* Fats and protein assist in slowing digestion, helping to maintain a steady release of energy. Protein is needed for healthy immune function and to build and repair muscle tissue.*

Without further ado, here are 5 food combinations that are killer workout snacks:

1. Chia Pudding

Everyone loves chia pudding these days and no wonder. These little seeds are a source of healthy fats and protein and are versatile and delicious.

Mix half a cup of almond milk with 2 tablespoons of chia seeds in a Mason jar, then add a dash of maple syrup or a teaspoon of coconut sugar, shake it up and refrigerate overnight. Grab it on your way out the door to the gym in the morning for a quick burst of energy.

2. Whole Grain Toast with Peanut Butter and Blueberry Jam

Spread a tablespoon of peanut butter and a teaspoon of blueberry jam onto one slice of whole grain toast for a snack high in carbohydrates with antioxidants, a little bit of fat and a decent amount of protein to boot.

3. Banana with Almond Butter

Bananas are hands-down one of the best pre and post workout foods. They are convenient, delicious, readily available, and full of easily digestible carbohydrates and potassium (a vital electrolyte lost in sweat), as well as being a source of tryptophan which the body converts into serotonin, helping you to feel good about exercising!

Eat a tablespoon of almond butter with your banana for extra protein and healthy fats, as well as for additional calcium, which is needed for proper muscle contraction.

4. Walnuts and Beet Juice

Walnuts are an excellent source of protein, minerals, and essential fatty acids that can help support a healthy inflammatory response.* Eat eight or so walnuts along with a glass of beet juice before a workout – the nitrates in beets appear to support healthy oxygenation of muscles, helping to enhance performance and recovery, especially during intense physical activity (Breese et al., 2013; Jones et al., 2013).*

5. Raspberries, Avocados, and Spirulina or Cocoa

For a powerful antioxidant pre-workout smoothie, mix up half an avocado with a cup of almond milk, a cup of frozen raspberries and a tablespoon of high quality cocoa powder or spirulina. The avocado offers healthy fats to fuel your workout and maintain muscle health; the almond milk is a source of calcium and protein; the raspberries, cocoa powder, and spirulina have antioxidants that help stave off free radical damage associated with exercise; and spirulina has also been shown to help in endurance exercise (Lu et al., 2006).

Some other great food combos that are excellent snacks to eat an hour or so before a workout include:

  • Granola with almond milk and apple sauce OR banana slices
  • Mango smoothie with hemp milk and turmeric
  • Roasted salt and pepper chickpeas
  • Dates stuffed with almond butter
  • Cashew beet pate on a slice of toast

*This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

References

Breese, B.C., McNarry, M.A., Marwood, S., et al. (2013). Beetroot juice supplementation speeds O2 uptake kinetics and improves exercise tolerance during severe-intensity exercise initiated from an elevated metabolic rate. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol, Dec 15;305(12):R1441-50.

Jones, A.M., Vanhatalo, A., & Bailey, S.J. (2013). Influence of dietary nitrate supplementation on exercise tolerance and performance. Nestle Nutr Inst Workshop Ser, 75:27-40.

Lu, H.K., Hsieh, C.C., Hsu, J.J., et al. (2006). Preventive effects of Spirulina platensis on skeletal muscle damage under exercise-induced oxidative stress. Eur J Appl Physiol, Sep;98(2):220-6.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

2 Outdoor Spring Exercise Routines

image-blog-PGX-new-template-importance-of-electrolytes-20160502(1)

Spring is a great month to get back into a routine of working out as the change in season brings warmer temperatures, plenty of sunshine, and longer days.  As a precursor to summer, spring also inspires many people to ramp up their workouts in anticipation of beach days and warm weather outfits.

So shake off the last of those cold, dark winter days and get outside with two of my favorite spring exercise routines:

image-pgx-blog-point-20160502 1. HIIT

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is a circuit that increases your heart rate then brings it back down before bringing it back up again. It burns a ton of calories in a short amount of time. Always check with your doctor to ensure you’re cleared for high-intensity workouts.

 

What You Need: Just your body and lots of water!

Warm-up: 3-4 minutes of low-intensity movement (jogging, dynamic warm-ups, etc)

HIIT Routine:

All exercises sets are 1 minute on and 30 seconds of rest.

  • Sprints x 4 sets
  • Burpees x 2 sets
  • Jumping Jacks x 2 sets

– WATER BREAK (less than 1 minute) –

  • 10-15 pushups, 30 second upward plank x 2 sets
  • 15-25 sit ups, 45 seconds glute bridge x 2 sets

image-pgx-blog-point-20160502 2. Running Circuit

Sometimes your body needs a low-intensity run. The steady state cardio is great for building endurance, burning calories and can be easier on your joints. This run incorporates a circuit throughout, allowing your body to try new movements while keeping your heart rate fairly steady.

You can do this circuit until you feel tired or for up to 5 miles.  Always listen to your body while exercising.

Things You’ll Need: running shoes, hydration pack, watch (to keep track of your time), and a running route of 5 miles or less.

Warmup: start your run with some dynamic exercise movements or a 3-4 minute brisk walk to slow jog.

Running Circuit Routine:

  • 5 minutes  x  jog at 40% effort
  • 5 minutes  x  jog at 50 % effort
  • 1 minute  x  jog at 30% effort (slow jog)
  • Slow down, stop, then start the following:
    • 1 minute  x  walking lunges
    • 1 minute  x  walk
  • 5 minutes  x  jog at 50% effort
  • 3 minutes  x  jog at  60% effort
  • 1 minute  x  jog at 30% effort (slow job)
  • Slow down, stop, then start the following:
    • 30 second per leg  x  side-step squats (moving to the right or left)
    • 1 minute  x  walk
  • 5 minutes  x  jog at 50% effort
  • 5 minutes  x  jog at 60% effort
  • 1 minute  x  jog at 30% effort
  • Slow down, stop then start the following:
    • 10-15 elevated pushups*
    • 1 minute  x walk
  • 5 minutes  x  jog at 50-60% effort

*For the push-ups you want your head well above your heart. Try to find a railing or some other prop for your push-ups

 

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)