The Nuts & Bolts of Nutrition

I’m not one to complain about getting older. I happen to like laugh lines, and after so many years of dodging cellulite, when it finally did arrive, I figured I was due.

I did, however, draw the line when my clothes stopped fitting right even when I hadn’t gained weight. What kind of world is it when you have a muffin top with your fat jeans?

Action had to be taken. His name is Rolf.

Rolf, as I have mentioned before, is a trainer who comes to my house once a week. I share him with my friend Liz. But as much as we want to get in shape, Liz and I have a hard time getting motivated to actually exercise. So it became a little game after Rolf arrived bright and early Monday mornings to launch into conversations that delayed the lunging and lifting.

Eventually Rolf recognized our analyses of Donald Trump’s tweets, and discussions about whether the person we could see out the window was letting their dog poop in my yard (“I think he just kicked the dirt!” “hold on, I’d better go see!”), for what they were: stall tactics. He insisted we get back to work.

The jig being up, we needed a better plan, and we found one that served a dual purpose. We got Rolf to talk about nutrition, an area he’s passionate about, and got actionable information that has helped us make better eating choices. In addition to skimming a few minutes off the exercise session.

I asked Rolf, a certified strength and conditioning specialist, certified personal trainer and certified nutrition coach, who got a degree in exercise science from Ithaca College, about how nutrition and exercise are intertwined, so I could share it here.

What you put into your body affects how well it works,” said Rolf. “Creating healthy habits can have a huge impact in a relatively short amount of time. The caveat is it works in the reverse direction, too - if you ignore your food choices, it can cause your body to malfunction in countless ways.”

What are the most common mistakes people make who think they are eating healthy?

“When people think that a specific macronutrient is automatically bad. There are 3 macronutrients, protein, carbs, and fats, all of which should be included in the right proportion in your diet. People cut out fat to become healthier or leaner, but you need fats for properly functioning hormones, vitamin absorption, cell health and metabolism. To be lean you need fat.

“Also, I’ve noticed people blame carbohydrates for weight gain, when instead it’s the overconsumption of carbs relative to that person's activity. Avoiding carbs altogether isn’t a great long-term plan. The basic recipe to healthy eating is: eat a wide variety of real food (not food-like products), the right amount of macronutrients and the right amount of micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) for your specific needs. Fad diets aren’t healthy or sustainable.”

What should everyone have in their kitchen?

“Healthy snacks, so when you get hungry you don’t reach for something high in calories and low in nutrients. My personal go-to snacks are cashews and snap peas. Also cooking equipment, like a crockpot or wok, that allow you to get creative. When people get bored with their food, they are a lot less likely to stick to healthy recipes.”

How long should it take to see results from a healthy diet?

“If you buckle down and stick to balanced meals made up of a wide variety of whole foods like meats, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, enough water and limited alcohol intake, within 3 days to a week you’ll feel slight but noticeable improvements in mental clarity, mood and energy. In weeks 2 to 4, you’ll see significant change in body composition, and in the first 1 to 2 months, dramatic changes in body composition, mental and physical well being. But it’s not just about food - the way you sleep, exercise and handle stress can drastically affect how quickly you achieve the results you want.”

Are their times of day that are better for carbs, protein or fats?

“Some protein, carbs and fats should be eaten at every meal in balanced amounts, but you should have faster-digesting carbs (like white potatoes, bread, fruit, pasta and sugar of any sort) around times where you’re physically active. If you have them a few hours before activity, then you’ll use the carbs instead of storing them; if you have them shortly after significant physical activity then you’ll use them more efficiently and they’re less likely to be stored as fat. I suggest people earn their carbs - If you’re lazy one day, limit your carb intake, and if you’re very active, have a little more.”

You’re a fan of Living Juice. What’s your favorite flavor?

“Green Vitality! At first I didn't love the taste, but after I had a few of they grew on me and now I crave it! I always feel healthier and have a nice clean energy after drinking it.”

How can cold-pressed juice be incorporated into an everyday diet?

“It’s a natural source of vitamins, minerals and hydrating electrolytes. Vitamin and mineral deficiencies are extremely common in America and can negatively impact your health in so many ways, from preventing a good night's sleep to low energy levels and even symptoms of depression. Also, drinking water alone won't hydrate you - you need electrolytes to retain water.”

How does Living Juice compare to others in the market?

“Living juice is made only with organic, high quality ingredients. Most juices you see in the supermarket only have a percentage of real juice, which means they’re diluted with water and other additives. Living Juice is nothing but juice, and you can tell the difference in the way it makes you feel.”


Thanks, Rolf! We’ll have to talk about this more on Monday….

For more on Rolf and his training business, Krauss Fitness, you can go here:



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