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Top Five Cycling Class Etiquette Blunders

A cycling instructor wears many hats: coach, trainer, motivator and mentor. But one title many of us would happily relinquish is “enforcer.” It’s never a pleasant job to police workout etiquette. From time to time, though, situations arise that must be dealt with. Knowing what to do, or at the very least knowing how to respond, can make tricky cycling studio dilemmas less uncomfortable and easier to manage. Here are effective responses to five sticky situations.

Texting During the Ride

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RECIPE FOR HEALTH: Cherry-Berry Fruit Salad With Shaved Dark Chocolate

In her book, JJ Virgin’s Sugar Impact Diet (2014 Hachette), the eponymous author, personal trainer and nutrition expert explains how different sugars react differently in the body and outlines the “seven most damaging sugars we eat every day without realizing it.” This recipe is a perfect way to show your loved ones you care about them on Valentine’s Day—or whenever the occasion calls for a delicious dessert. It’s beautiful to look at, and nutritious and sweet in all the right ways!

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Ask the RD

Question: I keep hearing and reading about the alkaline diet. Can you explain how it works and if it’s as good as it appears to be?

Answer: You are right—the alkaline diet seems to be having “a moment.” While the theory behind the diet has yet to be scientifically proven, at its core it is a healthy regimen.


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CSPI Special Report Says Sugar Substitutes Are Not So Sweet

Which artificial sweetener is 20,000 times sweeter than sugar and appears to be safe–even though it’s derived in part from an unsafe sweetener? What are the healthiest drinksforweightloss? Canartificialsweetenersleadto diabetes? Dodietsodasfosteratasteforsweets?Those are the kinds of questions that scientists at the Center for Science in the Public Interest answer in a new report titled “Sweet Nothings: Safe . . . Or Scary?

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Another Dirty Dozen: Food Additives

Do you ever wonder if it’s safe to consume the “artifi- cial colors” listed on certain food items, or if ingesting the “nitrates” listed on pre- packaged lunchmeat labels is healthy?

Environmental Working
Group, a research and advo- cacy nonprofit whose mis- sion is to use the power of public information to protect public health and the envi- ronment, has some distinct ideas about these and other
food additives. EWG recently published the “Dirty Dozen Guide to Food Additives,” a list designed to help consum- ers figure out which additives to avoid and why.

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FDA Mandates Calorie Labeling on Chain Restaurant Menus

In a move meant to give consumers a nutritional prompt about foods they eat outside the home, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in late November finalized two rules mandating that calorie information be listed on menus and menu boards in chain restaurants, similar retail food establishments and vending machines with 20 or more locations.

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Artificial Sweeteners Can Change Your Gut’s Microbiota

A new study shows that the widespread use of artificial sweeteners in drinks and food may cause certain gut bacteria to induce glucose intolerance and metabolic disease, both significant markers for obesity and diabetes.

Long promoted as aids to weight loss and diabetes prevention, artificial sweeteners may actually affect the composition and function of your gut’s microorganisms, disturbing their balance and hastening metabolic changes. Published last September in the journal Nature, the study outlines the results of trials conducted on both mice and humans.

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Disrespecting the quality of the U.S. school lunch program is practically a national sport. But it appears the institutional lunch lady may know more about feeding American kids a balanced and healthy square meal than parents who pack their kids’ lunches—at least according to research that appeared recently in JAMA Pediatrics.

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“What is the most effective posture tip you give clients?”

This is the tip I give clients: Picture a string pulling your head up toward the ceiling. This helps to create space between the vertebrae; when you relax, the spinal segments can then realign.

My favorite way to teach proper pos- ture is to have people close their eyes and slowly tip their spine forward and back and side to side to find their true “good posture.”

Everyone’s spine is slightly different, and mirrors can only get us so far. Real posture is found within each person through body awareness.

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How One Man Lost More Than Half His Body Weight

Intervention. At 493 pounds and with a pants waist size of 78, Josh was close to hitting rock bottom. The significant weight he carried caused him to lose his job and his house, forcing him to move in with his parents. Concerned for his well-being, Josh’s family encouraged him to seek guidance from a qualified fitness professional. That’s when he met Kevin Buchanek, a personal trainer at Personally Fit by Chris Hill.

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Thinking Outside the Gym Box

ThThe fifitness world is steeped in innovation. From super-high-tech monitoring systems to machines that target even the smallest muscles, gyms are brimming with the latest and
greatest gadgets.

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Which is Worse for HBP and CVD: Sugar or Salt?

If your answer to the question in the headline was “salt,” you are wrong, say authors of a published study in the online journal Open Heart [doi: 10.1136/openhrt-2014-000167]. Added sugars, particularly fructose, in processed foods are likely to have a greater role in high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke than added salt.

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Bug Love: New Ways to Eat Fermented Foods

Although not particularly glamorous, eating “bugs” is now considered essential for better gut health. And our increasing appetite for so-called “probiotics” is being played out in the proliferation of fermentation cookbooks and food products hitting store shelves.

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Question of the Month

Have you or has the facility where you work delivered any mind-body programs, like tai chi or yoga, to residents of older-adult housing communities? If so, please tell us about it. Let us know what level of care facility (independent or assisted living) was served, and what types of activity programs have been successful. Offer any tips on how you think others might also begin offering such programs.

Share your responses with editor Sandy Todd Webster, [email protected]

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Is Internet-Based Weight Loss Info Accurate?

With the Internet offering easy access to an abundance of information, many fitness and nutrition-minded individuals go online to seek guidance. However, researchers warn that the top websites to come up after a search may not offer the best-quality content.

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