Raw Food Enzymes and Quackwatch

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

I’ve read so many websites and books about Raw Foods because I’m looking for some proof. They make claims that cooking food depletes the enzymes in food that is necessary for humans. It sounded like quackery to me, especially since none of them quoted any medical studies.

Thanks to one of my readers, Barry, the reason it sounds like quackery is because it is:

Dr. Stephen Barrett has written an article about a specific product, Nu-zymes, but it also addresses the idea of raw food and enzymes. Here are the best quotes:

“Enzymes in food cannot remedy a lack of cellular enzymes. All plant and animal products contain enzymes. They are responsible for both growth and post-harvest deterioration (wilting, discoloration, rancidity, etc.). They have nothing to do with the digestive process after food is consumed.”

“Raw food contains no enzymes needed for digestion. All the enzymes needed for human digestion are made in the body.”

That finishes it for me. I won’t be jumping into a diet of strictly raw foods. Sure, the food at the raw food bar tasted really good, but it’s not any more healthy than the same food boiled or microwaved.


Obesity Epidemic Linked To Widescreen Televisions

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 pm — Filed under:

This funny little article links obesity to widescreen televisions. It’s a parody and they aren’t serious, but it’s funny to read.

The idea that people are getting fatter because of the way their televisions are formatted is just as absurd as some of the other theories that have been thrown around lately. Blaming your widescreen television, the PlayStation, your car or any other modern convenience for obesity is just a cop out.

I was fat because I ate too much and I exercised too little. It’s not like I didn’t have access to running shoes. It’s not like my Xbox was shoving food into my mouth. I was fat because I didn’t take care of myself. I don’t blame anything else.

The fault was all mine. That was the sucky part. I had nothing and no one to blame but myself, but the corallary to that is that now that I’m healthy, I also have no one to blame but myself. I eat less. I exercise more. No one forces me to get on the treadmill or bike. No one withholds food from me. I have done it all myself and I’m happy to announce that my fitness has NOTHING to do with a widescreen television.

They Just Don’t Get It

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

This story is about a computer program that allows parents to set restrictions on their children’s eating at the school cafeteria:

The system is described here:

When he punches in his code for the prepaid account his parents set up, a warning sounds: “This student has a food restriction.”

Back goes the brownie as the cashier reminds him that his parents have declared all desserts off-limits.

This is NOT going to work. Children have so much freedom. They can save their allowance and eat at a convenience store on the way home. They can eat at their friend’s house after school. There is no way for a parent to categorically limit what your child eats. This very expensive system is USELESS and it will not help prevent childhood obesity. It may even cause more problems by adding shame and embarrassment to the equation.

The only way to help your children eat healthy and have an active lifestyle is to model the behavior you want to see. If you want your children to eat healthy, then you have to eat healthy ALL THE TIME. They are watching you and your actions speak far louder than any restrictions you put on them.

For more thoughts about Childhood Obesity read further:


Happy Healthy Monsters

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 pm — Filed under:

Sesame Street - Happy Healthy MonstersI’ve been following the news on Cookie Monster and his bingeing behavior for quite awhile now. I was happy to see Happy Healthy Monsters at the library. I don’t have any children to watch this video with, but I enjoyed it just the same. I loved how they addressed Cookie Monster’s past eating behavior. They were careful to explain that cookies can be a part of a healthy diet while they introduced a large variety of fruits, vegetables, dairy and legumes to the children.

This is not a serious workout video that concentrates on exercising every muscle. It’s more of an introduction to the idea of jumping, jogging and dancing to get your heart beating faster. They talk about healthy food and there is even a nod to yoga at the end.

The best part, is that they have Grover describe the moves and then they have real children who are “watching” Grover on television perform the moves. A muppet can’t show you exactly what they want when they say jump like a frog, but the children that are participating with the show give you a clear example of what you should be doing. Genius…


If you’re expecting a full body workout for your child, this is not the workout for you, but if you want your kid to actually watch it all the way through, then Sesame Street is always a winner.

Workout Video Review: Iron Yoga

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

Iron YogaI found Iron Yoga at the library and I’ve been working out with it several times before I have to return it. Here is how it stacks up.

The workout video is VERY watchable. There is none of that irritating patter. The only thing the instructor says are directions about how to hold the poses correctly. This video is hosted by Anthony Carillo, who is a “nationally ranked Ironman triathlete.” I had never heard of him before watching this video, but the instructor doesn’t need to be famous. All the instructor needs to do is give me intricately clear directions and refrain from saying anything else. This isn’t a workout video that will ever need to be muted in order to be enjoyed.

I’ve been weight training for over two months, so I didn’t think this would give me much of a workout. In fact, I tried this with 3-pound weights because I thought I’d just take it easy the first time through, but it was very challenging. There were several times when I needed to set down the weights because the poses were very difficult with them. For now, I’ve had to use my 1.5-pound weights and I’ll increase the weight when I gain more balance.

It’s not the kind of workout that will burn a lot of calories, however. It’s almost an hour long and I burned about half the calories that I would have burned had I run on the treadmill that long. It’s great for developing balance, but not so good for burning calories.

According to my Nike Imara, these are the stats for my first workout:

Total Minutes: 56′:49″
Total Calories Burned: 274
Average Heart Rate: 109 BPM
Time in Moderate Zone: 37′:47″
Time in High Zone: 4′:50″
Time in Low Zone: 14′:12″


I usually hate workout videos, but this is one that is challenging. There is no annoying chatter that becomes so irritating after several viewings. This is a workout that I’m willing to buy and after seeing the inexpensive price at Amazon, I was easily able to justify it.


We hate her

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 pm — Filed under:

Many, many thanks to Eh… not so much for directing me to this article.

It was such a positive approach to my worries about Skinny Bitches. This article nailed my feelings about getting closer and closer to my goal.

“If you have been into training for a long time, perhaps you know what I am talking about. You feel apologetic around other women, as if you’re letting them down or buying into the beauty myth. Maybe you feel the need to justify yourself, or hide under baggy clothes. Maybe people ask you if you have an eating disorder just because you prefer fruit and cottage cheese to greasy hamburgers for lunch.”

I haven’t gotten past this issue yet, but I’m one step closer to it thanks to this article.

Low Calorie Shrimp Cocktail

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

This beautiful shrimp cocktail is an update to the 1970’s version that is so popular at the casinos in Las Vegas.

Even with the decadent marinara-vodka sauce, this treat couldn’t be more than 3 or 4 WW Points. Sometimes we eat the same things over and over in an effort to be healthy. Life doesn’t have to be boring and this low calorie shrimp cocktail is an indulgence that can add to your diet without guilt.


Island Worlds

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 pm — Filed under:

Island Worlds is a software program in alpha testing right now that is supposed to allow you to use your exercise bike or treadmill to explore various worlds.

Even though the graphics are relatively simple, I find this software appealing.

Being able to just run along this sandy beach while I’m on my treadmill is just the kind of thing that would make the treadmill that much more appealing. Sometimes I get sick of watching movies when I’m running on the treadmill and being able to explore other worlds sounds fun to me, even if they are a little simple compared to Xbox 360.

They will open up beta testing soon and I volunteered to test their software when that time comes. They sent me an email saying that I will be able to be part of their beta testing, so (depending on their confidentiality agreement) I will keep you updated when they get to that point.

Via: Videogame Workout: NeoRacer

Do Chicken Wings Cause Ovarian Cysts?

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am — Filed under:

There is an email running around that warns women to avoid eating chicken wings to prevent ovarian cysts. Is this email true?

Snopes explains the underlying fear of this email:

“Hormones are linked in our minds (as they should be) with the growth process, which in humans is strongly tied to changes related to sexual maturation. Ergo, that fear finds voice in stories about women exposed to such hormones developing cysts in their reproductive systems and in stories about men developing the physical characteristics of women (that is, growing breasts).”

But they assure us that our fears are not true:

“The FDA has ruled that ‘No steroid hormones are approved for use in poultry,’ so chickens intended for human consumption in the U.S. cannot legally be fed or injected with steroids.”

There are so many legitimate things to be scared of, don’t let these email chain letters fill you with fears that aren’t a problem yet.


Question of the Week: Laura’s Writeup

By Laura Moncur @ 5:00 pm — Filed under:

What do you think is your strongest asset when you are successful at taking care of yourself?

My strongest asset is my obsessive desire to measure EVERYTHING. When I am on a roll, I insist on tracking every bit of food that goes into my mouth and every minute I spend exercising. I have years and years worth of data about what I’ve eaten and how I’ve exercised.

What’s scary is what ISN’T documented. I can tell when I am close to a binge when I don’t feel like writing down what I have eaten. Even if I know that I haven’t overindulged, I can tell that I’m at risk when I don’t want to pull out my Palm and track my food. That has also been a blessing for me because when I notice that I don’t want to write down what I’ve eaten, I can analyze myself and see what is REALLY going on.

The only problem with this asset is that sometimes I waste too much time documenting everything. Sometimes I don’t need to measure as much as I do. I don’t need to write down every calorie I have eaten to stay healthy. I don’t need to document every workout to get stronger. All I need to do is eat healthy and exercise. Writing it down has become magical to me. If I don’t write it down, somehow the magic doesn’t work anymore.

I keep thinking that I SHOULD be able to live a healthy life without documenting every bite of food that goes into my mouth. The SHOULD word is something that causes me a lot of trouble. I assume that everyone else doesn’t need to monitor their food. The truth of the matter is, it doesn’t matter what everyone else needs to do. I need to write everything down, or I will overeat. I don’t need to test that theory. I’ve tested it enough already.

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