More than half of Americans take nutritional supplements regularly. James Keyser / Getty Images
Conor Heffernan, University of Texas at Austin
Spend any time watching TV or scrolling through social media and you will inevitably see advertisements for pills, powders, and potions that promise to build muscle, lose body fat, improve your focus, and revitalize your youth.
Most of us have used them. At the last count, the National Center for Health Statistics found that over 50% of all adults in America had consumed a dietary supplement in the past 30 days. The center used data from 2017 and 2018, but recent surveys suggest that this number is closer to over 70%.
Globally, the dietary supplement industry is expected to be worth over $ 140 billion by 2020. In the United States alone, this is estimated to be around $ 36 billion, despite evidence that most of these supplements don’t work.
How did products with questionable benefits and expensive prices become mainstream? Diet supplements are not a new phenomenon. Their history dates back at least 150 years, and they have thrived in the United States thanks to false promises, fanatical followers, and weak regulation.
Make you want alternatives
Given the eccentric claims that supplement labels can adorn, it may not come as a surprise that some of the early supplement enthusiasts were religious figures. Their supplements weren’t pills, they were food alternatives.
Sylvester Graham, born in 1794, was an American Presbyterian who preached salvation through a vegetarian diet.
Part of Graham’s teaching focused on moderation and whole grain foods. Graham’s followers made graham bread, crackers, and flour and marketed them with the promise that these products would promote righteous living and eternal salvation.
Transcendental Graphics / Getty Images
Although Graham did not officially endorse these products, his spiritual successor, Dr. John Harvey Kellogg, an avid supporter of his family’s new grocery line. As a doctor, inventor, and businessman in one, Kellogg ran his own Michigan spa – the Battle Creek Sanitarium – in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Although he didn’t make corn flakes – that was his brother Will – Kellogg was responsible for marketing flour, protein substitutes, cereal, and peanut butter. Like Graham products, Kellogg’s foods have been associated with improved health and virtue.
Graham crackers and granola may seem relatively harmless compared to some health and wellness products sold today, such as detox teas and vitamin-rich water. But they were still important in getting the still strong message behind most of the supplements we see today: this product will improve your health and life.
Fitness supplements are all the rage
In teaching this topic to students, I share a discovery that historians John Fair and Daniel Hall made while researching the history of protein powders.
Sometime in the 1940s, American nutritionist Paul Bragg turned to barbell maker Bob Hoffman.
At the time, Hoffman was making a small fortune selling his York barbell exercise equipment in the United States. Bragg had now firmly established himself as a leading expert on alternative nutrition. Sensing a potentially lucrative partnership, Bragg wrote to Hoffman with an idea.
Stuart William Macgladrie / Fairfax Media via Getty Images
In the letter, Bragg Hoffman shared the fundamental flaw in his York business: his products were durable. If someone bought a barbell set in the 1930s, it was likely they could still use it in the 1950s. Bragg recommended selling supplements that should be replaced every two weeks or monthly.
Hoffman decided to give up the partnership with Bragg, but soon realized the potential of the idea. In the 1950s, nutritionist and bodybuilding coach Irving Johnson began selling protein supplements in Hoffman’s Strength & Health Magazine. Johnson’s “Hi Protein” powder made from soy was a great success.
Within a year, Hoffman banned Johnson from his magazine and began selling his own “Hi-Proteen” powder. Protein supplements grew in size and scope as an industry. Soy protein products were eventually replaced with milk protein powder in the 1960s. There were several other derivatives in the late 1990s, ranging from pea protein to collagen powders.
The size and scope of the other offerings grew over time. Vitamin and mineral supplements became popular in the 1950s. Energy drinks and energy boosters like creatine started flying off shelves in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Prohormones – which were supposed to be supposed to build muscle and were eventually banned – were introduced in the early 2000s. Profits skyrocketed every decade, as did creativity in product branding.
Unusual promises were the order of the day. Vitamin manufacturers promised cancer-curing products, protein powder promoted steroid-like effects, while pre-workout dietary supplements – often mixed with methamphetamines – offered limitless energy.
The government agencies did little to stop them.
The struggling FDA
It wasn’t because there was a lack of trying. The dietary supplement industry and federal agencies have long been playing a game of cat and mouse.
When Hoffman and others began selling nutritional supplements, they were technically subject to the guidelines of the Food and Drug Administration. But by the 1950s, the FDA was ill-equipped to regulate dietary supplements. However, some of the outlandish claims and unsanitary practices used by the manufacturers caught the attention of the regulator, which soon sought more scrutiny.
In the 1960s, Hoffman – who routinely claimed his products added pounds of muscle in a short period of time – became a target for the FDA. The secret of his Hi-Proteen powder? A large mixing container in which he mixed Hershey’s chocolate powder with soy protein powder with an oar.
Hoffman was regularly censored but never stopped. During the 1960s and 1970s, the FDA regularly attacked manufacturers for their lax production methods and incredulous claims.
The problem was that the FDA was never able to fully regulate the industry.
From 1968 to 1970, Congress held several public hearings on the FDA’s plans to regulate nutritional supplements. Legislators, trade associations of dietary supplements, manufacturers and citizens discussed restrictions and bans on certain products, such as that the sale of dietary supplements with nutrients that make up more than 150% of the recommended daily intake is illegal.
Public and private outcry stopped such plans. The FDA was forced to agree to a light-touch regulation. In 1975 a court ruling allowed dietary supplements to be advertised as natural. A year later, the Rogers Proxmire Act banned the FDA from limiting vitamin and mineral amounts in dietary supplements.
The FDA reserved the right to pursue unsubstantiated or misleading claims, but this did little to hold back the industry. The number of products continued to grow.
Simply put, it became impossible to see what was going into the products. This also explains why so many supplements contain a statement that they are not FDA approved or recommended.
In the early 1990s, the FDA resumed its efforts to regulate the dietary supplement industry. In particular, the agency wanted to strengthen its own enforcement powers while making the advertising of therapeutic claims on dietary supplement labels illegal. Once again, private lobbying and public outrage diluted the agency’s powers.
In 1994, Congress passed the Health Education Act on Dietary Supplements, which completely changed the food landscape. Dietary supplements were now classified as food, not drugs or food additives. By classifying dietary supplements as food rather than medicine, the law reduced the burden of proof to back up the manufacturers’ claims.
JW LTD / Getty Images
The legislation also expanded which products can be classified as dietary supplements – and therefore do not fall under the remit of the FDA.
Nowadays, manufacturers are given the responsibility to self-regulate their potentially harmful products. This leaves manufacturers open to lawsuits, but can be a long and drawn-out process for consumers. In fact, nutritional supplements are put on the market before they are thoroughly tested. Many products are sold even though they contain prohibited substances.
A single promise wrapped in a pill
Since the mid-20th century, nutritional supplements have been advertised in a variety of ways in the United States. But given the differences in product, taste, and price, they have generally been marketed on the basis of a single promise: this product will in some ways make your life better.
Whether or not this is the case for the individual product – some supplements actually work, such as creatine – it has become problematic on a broader basis. Federal agencies in the US have been constantly prevented from properly monitoring the market. Private lobbying and public outrage over the government’s “taking your vitamins away” has resulted in malpractice and dangerous news.
A 2018 study found 776 cases of unapproved pharmaceutical ingredients added to dietary supplements between 2007 and 2016 in the United States. Many of these additives were relatively harmless. But some ingredients – from steroid compounds to banned weight loss drugs – weren’t.
Dietary supplements can promise a lot. But in reality most of them are articles of faith.
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Conor Heffernan, Assistant Professor of Physical Culture and Sport Studies, University of Texas at Austin
This article was republished by The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.
Do Grains Go Bad? Yes, But They Don’t Have To
AAre you someone who goes to the grocery store every time you want to eat pasta or rice, or do you stay stocked with your favorite cereal forever? If you’re resonating with the latter, we have some news that may have shocked you: grain goes bad – but how quickly it happens is up to you.
“Grains have a longer shelf life than most foods, which makes them one of the best foods to stock up on at home,” says New York-based nutritionist Jennifer Maeng of Chelsea Nutrition in Manhattan, noting that she has one Offer range of health benefits.
“Compared to refined grains, whole grains contain all parts: bran, endosperm and germs. If all these parts of the grain are left intact, they will be rich in nutrients such as B vitamins, minerals, fiber, iron, copper, zinc, magnesium, antioxidants, phytochemicals, healthy fats, vitamin E, carbohydrates and proteins. “
Of these nutrients, she says the most notable is fiber. “The fiber contained in whole grain products slows down the breakdown of starch into glucose and thus prevents a high rise in blood sugar,” says Maeng. “Constant increases in blood sugar can negatively affect your energy levels, weight, and general health.”
Now that you know the benefits of storing grain in your kitchen, it is time to see the cons, too. Grains actually spoil and, thanks to their typical storage, can be a breeding ground for bacteria. Read on to find out more.
Does Grain Go Bad?
According to Maeng, the reason grain goes bad is because it is often stored incorrectly. With that in mind, she says grain should be stored in airtight containers (like OXO’s Good Grips POP storage containers) in a cool, dry environment.
“Whole grains can usually be stored (dry) for up to six months,” she says, noting that they can be kept for up to a year in the freezer. “Cooked whole grains can be stored in the refrigerator for four days and in the freezer for six months.”
Of all the grains there is, Maeng says that pasta, barley, brown rice, spelled, wheat, corn, farro, and rye are among the grains with the longest shelf life when dry.
And then there is white rice. “When properly (dry) stored, white rice can be stored for 25 to 30 years,” says Maeng. “As a study has shown, polished rice does not spoil and retains its nutritional and flavor profile for up to 30 years.”
Signs that your grains have gone bad
As with most foods, Maeng says you know your grains are spoiled if you notice a change in color, smell, or texture. “They tend to degrade in environments with a lot of humidity, heat, and temperature fluctuations,” she adds.
Speaking of changes in humidity and temperature, grains can serve as an abundant source of foodborne contaminants, according to the National Institutes of Health. “Unfortunately, whole grains usually have more pollutants than refined cereals, but they contain more nutrients that can combat these pollutants,” says Maeng. “The National Institutes of Health emphasize that despite an increased risk of contamination, the benefits of consuming whole grains outweigh the risk of contamination.”
Proper storage of grain
Remember: The best way to avoid spoilage and foodborne contamination is to properly store your grain. While dry and cooked grains require different storage solutions, Maeng says that “both uncooked and cooked grains should not be stored in environments with temperature changes, as this creates condensation and increases the risk of food contamination growth.”
That said, learn how to store your grains below.
As mentioned earlier, airtight containers and dry, cool environments are best for dry grain storage.
“The best temperature for storage is 40 ° F,” adds Maeng, noting that rice stored at 70 ° F (with the help of oxygen absorbers) can be stored for years.
Cooked grains, on the other hand, have a much shorter shelf life. “Cooked grains that are stored in the refrigerator should be used within a few days, ideally three,” says Maeng, noting that they can be kept in the freezer for up to six months. “The shelf life of already cooked grain is much shorter than that of uncooked grain due to the addition of water and its role in microbial growth.”
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What’s the Best Diet for Runners? Nutrition Tips and More
Before shopping for groceries for running, it is important to understand the science behind it.
The three macronutrients that are important to your overall diet are:
In addition, a varied diet ensures that you are also getting micronutrients and antioxidants, which play key roles in muscle function and recovery.
Carbohydrates are the body’s main source of energy and are essential for long distance running.
When you consume them, your body breaks down dietary carbohydrates into their simplest form, the sugar, glucose.
Glucose is a vital source of energy for humans. This is because your body needs it to produce your cells’ energy currency called adenosine triphosphate (ATP) (1, 2).
During a run or exercise, your body can send glucose to muscle cells as an immediate source of energy. Any extra glucose in your bloodstream is sent to your liver and muscle cells to be stored as glycogen (1, 2).
During a run, your body first draws glucose from the blood to keep working muscles powered. When glucose levels start to drop, the body starts converting stored glycogen back to glucose through a process called glycogenolysis (1, 2).
Your VO2max is the maximum rate at which your body can consume oxygen while exercising, and it increases with higher exercise intensity.
This limits the oxygen available for energy production. As a result, your body engages in anaerobic (lack of oxygen) energy production that relies primarily on carbohydrates (3, 4).
When your exercise intensity increases, e.g. For example, when running and sprinting over shorter distances, your body uses carbohydrates as a primary source of energy and fat as a secondary source (2, 3, 5).
Because of the shorter duration of a sprint, most people have adequate blood sugar and glycogen stores to support their run (2, 3, 5).
During longer, lower-intensity runs, your body increasingly relies on fat stores to produce energy. This can happen, for example, on runs longer than 10 km (6 miles) (3, 4, 5, 6).
Additionally, most long distance runners also need to fill up on simple sugars to keep their run going. This is why many long-distance runners consume sports drinks or energy gels (5, 6).
Eating around 45–65% of total daily calories from carbohydrates is a good goal for most runners (7, 8).
Stored body fat is another great source of energy, especially when running long distances.
In general, you should aim to get between 20% and 30% of your total daily calories from mostly unsaturated fats. Avoid eating less than 20% of your caloric intake from fat (8).
Low fat intake is linked to a lack of fat-soluble vitamins and essential fatty acids (8, 9, 10).
During long-lasting endurance training, your body falls back on its fat reserves as the primary source of energy.
It does this through a process called fat oxidation. Stored triglycerides are broken down into fatty acids, which your body then converts into glucose (1, 3, 5, 6).
While the process of fat oxidation is useful in long distance running, it is less efficient than using carbohydrates during high-intensity exercise. Because fat takes more time to be converted into energy, and that process also requires oxygen (8, 9, 10).
In addition, dietary fat is less efficient as a training fuel than carbohydrates, which are consumed very quickly and are more readily available during exercise (8, 9, 10).
So instead of consuming fat specifically for running, you should consume it as part of a balanced diet to support the functions of your body.
Dietary fat is crucial for:
- healthy joints
- Hormone production
- Nerve function
- General health
It also supports the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, and K), making it an important part of your diet (8, 9, 10).
If you have stomach upset, eat low-fat meals in the few hours before running. Instead, try to eat higher fat meals during recovery periods (10).
Protein is not a primary source of energy during endurance training. Instead, your body supports (11, 12):
- Muscle growth and regrowth
- Tissue repair
- Injury prevention
- the production of oxygen-carrying red blood cells
- Total recovery
Your muscles break down as you run, which makes protein fueling important in rebuilding those muscles. Without protein, the muscles cannot be rebuilt efficiently, which can lead to muscle wasting, increased risk of injury and poorer performance (11, 12).
Although individual needs vary, most research suggests consuming around 0.6-0.9 grams of protein per pound (1.4-2.0 grams per kg) of your body weight per day.
This is sufficient for recovery and can prevent muscle loss in extreme endurance athletes (8, 10, 11).
Exercise puts a strain on your body’s metabolic pathways, so you need a diet high in micronutrients to support its function.
While every athlete has different needs, some micronutrients are particularly important (8):
- Calcium. This is a major contributor to bone health and muscle contraction. Most people get enough calcium-rich foods in their diet, including dairy products and leafy greens.
- Vitamin D. Vitamin D is important for bone health as it supports calcium and phosphorus absorption. It can also contribute to muscle metabolism and function. You can get it through sun exposure, supplements, and foods rich in vitamin D.
- Iron. This is critical to the development of red blood cells, which provide oxygen to working muscle cells. Long distance runners, vegetarians, and vegans may need more than the recommended food intake – more than 18 mg per day for women and 8 mg per day for men.
- Antioxidants. Antioxidants help reduce cell damage from oxidation from intense exercise. Eating foods high in antioxidants – like vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds – seems to be more effective than taking antioxidant supplements.
- Other nutrients and aids. Many athletes use supplements or consume foods to improve performance, such as beetroot, caffeine, beta-alanine, and carnosine. Some of these are backed by more research than others.
For most people, eating a variety of whole foods ensures that you are getting enough micronutrients.
If you think you have a deficiency or want to try a new nutritional supplement, speak to a doctor.
Carbohydrates are your body’s main source of energy during exercise. As you increase the distance and time of your runs, your body also begins to use stored fat for fuel. Prioritizing your diet can help improve your performance.
Good timing when eating can make all the difference in your runs. Your timing largely depends on:
- how long and far do you run
- your personal goals
- your tolerance
- Your experience
The best way to find out what works for you is through trial and error.
Diet before the run
Most people who run for less than 60 minutes can safely exercise without eating first. Even so, you may want to have a small, high-carb snack to provide a quick source of glucose. Examples are (13, 14):
- 2-3 Medjool dates
- Apple sauce
- a banana
- a glass of orange juice
- Energy gel
If you plan to run for more than 60-90 minutes, have a small meal or snack containing about 15-75 grams of carbohydrates at least 1-3 hours before your workout.
This gives your body enough time to digest your food (8, 13, 14, 15).
Examples of carbohydrates to eat are:
- a fruit smoothie made from milk and a banana
- Scrambled eggs and toast
- a bagel with peanut butter
Avoid high-fiber foods a few hours before running, as these take longer to digest and can cause stomach upset during exercise. Examples are whole grains, beans, lentils, and some vegetables.
After all, people who run for more than 90 minutes may want to recharge with carbohydrates a few days before an event.
This involves consuming a large amount of carbohydrates before a long distance run to make sure your body is storing as much glycogen as possible for quick energy supply (8).
While carbohydrate loading, many people attempt to consume 3.2-4.5 grams of carbohydrates per pound (7-10 grams per kilogram) of their body weight per day 36 to 48 hours before running. The best sources are complex carbohydrates like (8, 9, 10):
- Sweet potatoes
- Whole wheat pasta
- Brown rice
- Multigrain bread
- low fiber cereals
During your run
The only macronutrient that you need to focus on while running is carbohydrates. What you consume should largely depend on the length and intensity of your run.
Here are general guidelines you can follow for different run lengths (8, 9, 10):
- Less than 45 minutes. No high-carb foods or drinks are required.
- 45-75 minutes. You might want a high-carbohydrate mouthwash or small sips of a sports drink.
- 60-150 minutes. You may want to replenish your blood sugar level with 30-60 grams per hour of a sports drink or energy gel.
- 150 minutes or more. For long distance endurance runs, you may need to fill up with 60-90 grams of carbohydrates per hour. Most people prefer to stock up on high-carb sports drinks, gels, chewy candies, and bananas.
Whether you eat right after your run depends on the intensity of the exercise, the duration of the run, and your personal preferences.
If you want to eat right away, try a small snack with carbohydrates and proteins, such as chocolate milk or an energy bar.
Try to eat a meal that is high in carbohydrates and protein within 2 hours of your run.
Try to consume between 20 and 30 grams of protein. Research has shown that this can promote increased muscle protein synthesis.
Some examples of high protein foods are (8, 9, 10, 16):
- Protein powder (whey or vegetable based)
You should also replenish your glycogen stores by eating complex carbohydrates like whole wheat pasta, potatoes, brown rice, and whole grain bread, which provide a constant source of glucose for hours after your run (7, 8, 9, 15).
In most cases, food intake before, during and after the run depends on many personal factors. Try out some of these pointers and tweak them as needed to see what works best for you.
The benefits of fiber | 2021-09-21
The “Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020-2025” state that more than 90% of women and 97% of men do not adhere to the recommended intake of fiber, and such deficits are associated with health risks. This is where fiber fortification in baked goods, a traditional source of intrinsic grain-based fiber, helps consumers get closer to their intake goals. While there is a lot of fiber in it, bakers may want to explore those that give the recipe a function, such as: B. those that can eliminate gluten in bread or reduce sugar in biscuits.
Family-owned and operated Royo Bread Co., New York, launches a low-calorie, keto-friendly artisanal bread that has 30 calories, 2 grams of net carbohydrates, and 11 grams of fiber per slice. Wheat-resistant starch is the first ingredient. Other sources of fiber include wheat protein, wheat bran, whole rye flour, ground flaxseed, and psyllium husk.
“Flax seeds are high in omega-3 fats and fiber,” says Ronit Halaf, a registered nutritionist who started the company in 2019 with her baker husband, Yoel Halaf. “Psyllium husks are an important part of all of our products. It contains soluble fiber and insoluble fiber that will help increase fullness, slow digestion, and most importantly, help you stay regular. Wheat protein, also called wheat gluten, is essential to keep our products together. It contains traces of wheat and is a rich source of fiber, vitamins and minerals. “
For Nature’s Path, Richmond, British Columbia, the focus was on eliminating added sugar in muesli. But ingredient technology also added fiber to it.
“People worry about the amount of sugar they’re consuming,” said Arjan Stephens, general manager of Nature’s Path. “Our new granolas contain 0% added sugar and are still 100% delicious.”
The muesli is available in vanilla-almond butter and mixed berry flavors, with each serving containing 17 grams of whole grain products. That doesn’t mean everything in fiber, however, as one serving only contains 3 grams. This still enables a high-fiber claim. The secret of the muesli’s sweet taste is its main ingredient: date powder.
“Dates are also high in fiber, which is great for digestive health,” said Stephens. “And their fiber content makes dates a low-glycemic food.”
While most Americans are aware that they need to consume more fiber and less sugar, it is not an easy task. You are not ready to forego quality and enjoyment.
According to a study by ADM Outside Voice, more than half of consumers associate fiber with benefits like digestive health. In addition, 56% of consumers report adding or increasing fiber to their diet, the Hartman Group reports in their report, Reimagining Wellbeing Amid COVID-19, 2021.
“However, added fiber can also be linked to digestive problems,” said Sarah Diedrich, Marketing Director, Sweetening Solutions and Fibers, ADM. “Our research has shown that almost 70% of consumers would stop buying a product if it caused gastrointestinal problems.”
This article is an excerpt from the September 2021 issue of Baking & Snack. To read the full fiber optic feature, click here.
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