Ask Away!

You have a question? Great, because we have an answer we are just dying to share with you! Good chance if you are thinking it, there are many others with the same question…or even better answers! Why not be the first to ask and we can share with everyone. So ask away!

14 comments on “Ask Away!

  1. Donna Post author

    We’re always learning here at TruPrevention! This site being the first and foremost mystery somedays. ;) We are working to fix the issue of the question coming in but not being posted for everyone to see. More to follow as we figure it out. But, in the mean time, this question came from Ashley:

    Okay so I’ve been working out 4 days a week for an hour at a time at the gym my shins hurt so bad along with my calfs !! Any tips suggestions as to how I can help myself feel better? Will it go away soon? Ugh so frustrating

    Hi Ashley,

    Thank you for you question. This question is very common in people just starting a workout program. I’d need to know more information to see what’s going on.

    How long has it been since you started working out and when did this pain start?

    What type of exercise are you doing in that hour and for how long?

    Are you doing any other exercises outside? If so, what?

    Does it hurt just when you are working out or does it hurt throughout the day, even on non-workout days? Does it hurt worse first thing in the morning when you are getting out of bed?

    Based on just the information you gave me, I am suspecting this is related to cardio exercises and you could have anything from muscle strain to shin splints to stress fractures. However, the only way to determine this is to get seen by your physician and have it checked out.

    Icing the affected area after working out may ease the pain. However, I would recommend backing off from the exercises that are causing the pain until you can be seen by your physician. Other exercises that are less impact, such as swimming or biking on a stationary bike may be a good choice for awhile.

    Many people do tend to get sore and achy when they start a new workout program. It is best to start slow and progress gradually. And the only way you know is by listening to your body. (Oh, and continuing to thank it!)

    Let us know how it goes!


    1. Ashley

      Hi there Donna , I’ve been working out for three weeks now. My feet have been hurting for two weeks now to the point it hurts to put any kind of pressure on them . Since I am new going to the gym when I go I start out with 30 mins of treadmill , then I do 20 min on the stationary bike , then I finish it off with 4 mins with the dumbbell weights . No I’m not doing any outside exercises at this time. And yes it hurts to the point of tears first thing when I get out of bed , once I get moving I tolerate it but all day long everyday now it’s painful I would like your input on this matter Ashley

      1. Donna Post author

        Ahhh….feet! Sounds like you may have plantar fasciitis. The plantar fascia ligament runs along the bottom of the foot. When it is put under too much stress small tears and irritation can occur, causing pain and inflammation. It is treatable, but I still recommend you be seen by your physician as soon as possible to get a proper diagnosis and eliminate further problems. It is pretty common and treatable if taken care of properly. If you go to, it is a wealth of knowledge regarding this condition. In the mean time I would back of the higher impact cardio and stick with the low impact ones (stationary bike, swimming). You can also use this time to continue to learn the various weighted exercises and learn how to execute them properly. Please let us know how you are doing! Thank you for sharing!

        1. Ashley

          Thanks Donna ! I will go see a physician and in the meantime stick to the low impact exercises for now . And yes continue to keep you posted . Ashley

  2. Jenn Bergeron

    Protein bars. I would like to know which are good and which are bad. I look for high protein with low calorie and carbs but feel I may be eating too many. Also what are best eating times around running.

    1. Donna Post author

      Great question Jenn! It is very confusing to look at all the “healthy” protein bars that are on the market. Many of them are just glorified candy bars and sometimes have more sugar than a real candy bar. Furthermore, the “chocolate” coating on a lot of them are fractionated palm kernel oil (saturated fat) to keep the chocolate stable and avoid melting. Look for ones that use whole foods. One of my favorites is Larabars. The ingredients list is the shortest one I have seen…the base is dates with a variety of fruits and nuts added in to make all kinds of awesome flavors. My favorite is the coconut and chocolate chip. Don’t be scared by the sugar content…it is all from natural sources. Also, they are coming out with a new line Larabar ALT…it has a higher protein content. I have not seen them in our stores yet, but I’ll be on the look out for them.

      Another option is to make your own…then you have ultimate control as to what goes into them. I will post a couple recipes I have used in the past.

      The best times to eat are very individual and will take some trial and error to figure out. Here are some basic guidelines to get you started:

      1. Hydration – cold water digests faster than room temp or warm water. So when you are getting ready for your run down a glass of ice cold water 10 – 15 minutes before heading out.

      2. Pre-workout – The body is like a car…it cannot run if there is no fuel in it. Before working out eat something small 30 – 60 minutes before you start. I try to keep it around 100 calories. It seems to be enough to stop me from feeling like I’m starving during my workout, but not too much that I feel I have a lead balloon in my stomach. Things that I have eaten pre-workout — Kids Cliff bars, a piece of toast with light smear of almond butter, glass of almond milk, small orange.

      3. Post workout – Working out causes micro tears in the muscles, so it is important that you eat a meal that is a good mix of carbohydrates and protein. I will have a smoothie made with a low sugar vanilla soy protein and fresh banana, mango and strawberries. It gives me protein to help repair the muscles as well as potassium (banana), vit C (strawberries and mango) and a host of antioxidants.

      As far as the nutritional “weeds” (protein per body weight, calories per body weight, etc…), I am going to let Mandy, the Truprevention Registered Dietician, take it. The floor is your Mandy!!!!

      Hope this helps get you started.

  3. Mandy Tyler

    Hi Jenn-
    I really encourage the individuals I work with to choose real foods whenever possible. For example, you can easily get the carbohydrate and protein you need by eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich (or try pb and banana – super yummy), low-fat yogurt and string cheese, or homemade trail mix made with dried fruit, nuts, whole grain cereal, and pretzels. I generally recommend sports bars only for those who need a convenient, fast snack and have limited access to a kitchen (i.e. when traveling, college athletes living in dorms, etc.). In terms of what type of sports bar to buy, taste is probably one of the main factors. Instead of looking for a protein based bar, I encourage you to choose one whose major energy source comes from carbohydrates with moderate amounts of protein and lower in fat. Carbohydrates provide the fuel your muscles need to go – so you want to make sure you are consuming a diet based upon them. One final note about sports bars is to watch the calorie content, as some bars have well over 300 calories. If you are trying to lose or maintain weight, you may be actually consuming more calories than you burned during the workout. Food for thought…

  4. Corina

    I have been seeing and reading a lot lately about fluids that get the metabolism moving, for example a recent one I saw is taking apples (any kind) and cinnamon sticks and placing in a picture of ice water. Now I love this idea, due to the fact that I have a hard time with drinking plain water. So my question is; is there any truth to this or is it just a great way to flavor water? Thanks in advance for replies and I hope this makes sense.

    1. Donna Post author

      Hey Corina,

      Great question! I did a little research and the answer is yes and no. Some how the words “cholesterol” and “glucose” was mysteriously missing in front of the word metabolism on a variety of websites and youtube videos I looked through. The actual research painted a bit of a different picture…not a bad one…just not only the one you were thinking.

      To start, I’ll break it down into it’s individual parts…apples and cinnamon.

      Starting with apples, research done by Dr. Arjmandi from Florida State University found that women that ate 75g of dried apple for a year, had a 23% decrease in LDL (bad) cholesterol, a 4% increase in HDL (good) cholesterol, and lost an average of 3.3 lbs. The weight loss is believed to be caused by the pectin (fiber) in the fruit, which leads to satiety and a tendency to consume less calories.

      Ahhh cinnamon… The USDA’s Agriculture Research Service (ARS) supports the intake of 1/2 tsp of cinnamon per day. Per the research website ” Our recent human studies indicate that consuming roughly one half of a teaspoon of cinnamon per day or less leads to dramatic improvements in blood sugar, cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol and triglycerides.” A study in the Diabetes Care journal, found that 1-6 grams of cinnamon per day reduced glucose, triglycerides, LDL, and total cholesterol in people with type 2 diabetes.

      A study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition found that a polymer of cinnamon (methylhydroxychalcone…say that 10 times!) mimics insulin and assists in the reduction of glucose. Insulin is a trigger for cholesterol production. So when glucose levels are reduced, less insulin is secreted and hence less cholesterol is made.

      The bottom line: The research I reviewed did not show that apples and cinnamon increase a person’s metabolic rate. However, it did show there are still many great benefits from apples and cinnamon. So go ahead and try the apple cinnamon water…but I’d also eat the apples after. If water-logged apples are not your thing, then maybe cinnamon water with apples on the side (skin on). No matter how you slice it (pun intended), including apples and cinnamon in your daily diet shows to have great health benefits. Cheers to your health! :)

  5. corina

    Wow, thanks for the time you put into the research and breaking this down for understanding. I will keep you posted!

  6. Jenn Bergeron

    Love the question and answer part of this. Thanks!

    1. Donna Post author

      You are more than welcome. Please keep sending in your questions and ideas!

  7. Jenn Bergeron

    Kind of a silly question that I’m sort of embarrassed to ask but does the order you eat your food in matter? I wondered if it matters that I eat salad first, protein second and starch last.

    1. Donna Post author

      Actually, that is a great question! If you are looking at it from a satiety perspective, then yes, it could be an asset to eat your foods in a certain order. Eating the foods highest fiber first (i.e. vegetables) will cause you to fill up quicker. If you follow it by a lean protein then you should feel satiated earlier in the meal and have less room for carbohydrates. And of course, if you’re not consuming as many calories then over time this would cause a person to loose weight.

      The foods that you eat together can also prove beneficial. It’s called food synergy. For example, vitamin C can help the absorption of iron, so to maximize the nutrients out of a piece of red meat, a person could drink a glass of orange juice. Not a red meat eater…no worries…pair that OJ up with a serving of Kale! Other great combinations include:

      Tomatoes and Avocados – The fat in avocados helps with the absorption of the lycopene in tomatoes

      Fruit Salad – Loaded with antioxidants, when combined together, the antioxidant effect goes through the roof!

      Apples and Chocolate – The anti-inflammatory in apples called quercertin, combined with chocolate’s flavonoid, catchechin improves cardiovascular health

      This is why it is important to eat a variety of healthy, nutrient dense foods every day.

      Hope this helps!

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