What Jack LaLanne Taught Me About Building a Kingdom

Source: Flickr (cc) nathancremisino

Exercise is King, nutrition is Queen, put them together and you’ve got a kingdom. —Jack LaLanne

Fitness King Jack LaLanne passed away this week. His New York Times obit called him “the founder of the modern fitness movement.”  At 96 he was in better shape than most people half that age.

As he got older Mr. LaLanne used publicity stunts to let the world know he was still in very good shape. At 60 he swam from Alcatraz to Fisherman’s Wharf. Not a big deal? He did it handcuffed and towing a boat that weighed 1,000 lbs. At 70 he swam through Long Beach Harbor towing 70 people in 70 boats. A lot of people in their 70s are happy if they have the flexibility to tie their own shoes.

His fitness regime was about as simple as it comes: eat healthfully and exercise every day. Nutrition is the Queen. Exercise is the King.

This is very good advice for a person with diabetes. Continue reading “What Jack LaLanne Taught Me About Building a Kingdom”

Why You Should Never Drink Anything Bigger Than Your Stomach

Source: Flickr (cc) sundaykofax

Starbucks announced their biggest drink yet: the “Trenta.”

The reaction was swift, negative, and probably not what the folks at Starbucks expected. I was surprised that such a big deal was made about it.

At 31 oz. it’s not the biggest drink out there. Heck the Super Big Gulp at 7-Eleven is 44 oz. And conventional wisdom advises drinking 64 oz. of water each day for good health—admittedly conventional wisdom doesn’t say to drink all 64 oz. in one sitting.

Why was there such a strong reaction? Possibly because of how it was reported by Canada’s National Post. What they did was very clever. They answered the question “What does this mean?” with a graphic. And that graphic went viral. It showed that the “Trenta” is bigger than the average person’s stomach. Continue reading “Why You Should Never Drink Anything Bigger Than Your Stomach”

Single Servings: Do They Help?

cc Wyscan

Are single-size packages a good thing?

As I wandered through the grocery store today I was struck by how many foods are available in single servings. There’s yogurt (of course) and string cheese, cream cheese, milk (dairy and soy), and tuna, and ice cream, and so much more.

And it got me to wondering “Is this a good thing?”

On the up-side, a single serving provides portion control. There’s no eye-balling 1/3 of a can or 1/6 of a jar to get the right serving size. I know that the carb count of the label is what I am eating.

Single servings are easy to take along with me. I can have a snack pack in my purse or glove box. It’s really handy to have a pack of tuna and crackers in my desk drawer — especially on those days I’m “too busy” to take a lunch break.

BUT… Continue reading “Single Servings: Do They Help?”

Can a Flowchart Help You Make Better Food Choices?

cc Ken Gilmour

Flowcharting eating choices can keep them healthy

Darya Pino at posted a flowchart for finding real food at the supermarket on her blog Summer Tomato yesterday. It’s an intriguing combination of guidance and humor.

Darya in answering the question “Was it [the item found in the grocery store] ever alive?” if you say “NO” the next box says “You’re probably in the home improvement aisle.” Clearly no yumminess to be found there. But if you say “YES” the next box says “Well done, you’re at the produce aisle or meat counter.”

Looking at Darya’s flowchart got me to thinking. If I could flowchart my decision points in eating I would have a really nifty thinking tool for keeping the yumminess on a healthy track. When I ran into new food or dish I would have a way to look at it and decide whether I wanted to eat it or not. Hmmmm… This is something I’ll have to explore further.

Can a flowchart help you make better food choices?