Pick up any packaged food, and you will see the number of calories listed on the label. Of course, nonpackaged foods, such as fresh produce, have calories, too; they just don’t carry labels telling you how many. Most people know that the body uses the calories contained in foods for energy and that, if they consume more calories than they expend, they will gain weight. (They also know that, if they do the opposite, they will lose weight.) Nonetheless, what exactly is a calorie, why do foods have calories and how does the body use them?
re you an older adult who exercises? Do you wonder if your diet is helping or hindering your workouts? Here are some nutrition tips from Jenna Bell-Wilson, MS, RD, LD, the media representative for the New Mexico Dietetic Association and a doctoral student in exercise physiology at the University of New Mexico.
As in years past, the American Dietetic Association (ADA) Conference, held October 19 through 22, 2002, provided attendees plenty of food for thought. The following session topics were among those of most interest to health and fitness professionals.
Millions of people rely on dietary supplements for everything from enhancing their sex lives to improving their athletic performances. There is essentially no systematic regulation of the dietary supplement industry, so there is no guarantee that a given supplement will live up to its claims. More important, there is no guarantee that any supplement is safe. At the Gatorade Sports Science Institute, we asked a panel of experts to discuss the relative safety of dietary supplements.
The statistics about heart disease are not very heartening: Since 1918, cardiovascular disease (CVD) has been the leading cause of mortality in the United States every single year (Hasler, Kundrat & Wool 2000). According to the American Heart Association (AHA), CVD claims the lives of nearly half of the 2.4 million Americans who die each year—almost as many lives as the next seven leading causes of death combined (AHA 2002).
The quantity of media reports on nutrition and weight management seems only to increase every year. Research in nutrition, as in most sciences, is leaping at such a rate that while the body of knowledge is expanding, the interrelations being uncovered are not always fully understood.