Exercise is Medicine by ACSM

July 2023 // Archive

Date based archive
25 Jul

When we think of American food, the classic hamburger comes to mind. Certain chains have made this meat patty and bun extremely popular, especially with all the different versions that now exist. The patty can be fried, grilled, or flame boiled, and some of the traditional toppings include lettuce, tomato, onion, ketchup, mustard, cheese, pickles, mayonnaise, or different special sauces.

The first hamburger was sold by Louis Lassen in 1895. This information is according to the government of Connecticut who said that hamburgers originated from the Louis Lunch restaurant. This sandwich was actually nameless until a traveler from Hamburg, Germany, named it after where he lived. It wasn’t until about 1921 when White Castle in Kansas became the first chain to carry the product. About 19 years later, McDonalds soon followed suit. This chain was known for adding variety to the sandwich. Because McDonalds offered fast service, the hamburger soon became a hit. Today, Burger King follows McDonalds as the second largest hamburger chain.

A traditional single patty hamburger has about 230 calories, 9.5 grams of fat, 25 carbohydrates, and 13 grams of protein.

Americans consume approximately 50 billion burgers per year.

About 75% of all American restaurants are burger joints.

71% of beef consumed in American is in the form of a hamburger.

There are over 50,000 burger joints across the United States.

Of all sandwiches sold, burgers account for 60%.

McDonalds purchases over 1 billion pounds of hamburger meat per year.

Besides the major chains the list of burger joints that sell the most burgers are as follows: In-N-Out,  Culver’s, Fuddruckers, Steak n Shake, Smashburger, Five Guys, Whataburger, Rally’s, Carl’s Jr., and Wendy’s.

A burger can be very basic or very unique these days. The portion distortion of a single patty has also become part of the more the merrier for the belly. Not to mention the French fries or onion rings that come on the side. A burger can pretty much satisfy anyone’s taste-buds and there are now vegetarian and non-red meat options. Those following dietary restrictions might ditch the bun and opt for a lettuce wrap. There are gigantic not able to fit in your mouth burgers, and then there are mini sliders. Depending on your preference, a burger can be detrimental to the waistline or a good addition of iron and nutrients. Going back to the basic hamburger Louis Lassen made might be a lost art, but there’s always room for simplicity in one’s life. At summer barbeques and parties, burgers are always an option on the menu. A hamburger is taste of American tradition well sought after.

20 Jul

Whey is one of the most popular protein products on the market. It is derived from the watery portion of milk, the same part that separates curds when making cheese. This product can help improve a person’s nutrient intake, may be linked to weight loss, and has also been used to assist athletic performance. It contains lactose, minerals, protein, vitamins, and fat. However, user be ware if you have a milk allergy. In fact, ricotta cheese contains the highest amount of whey. Whey can be concentrated or isolated and then used to make other products. It is commonly found in crackers, baked goods, and protein products like bars and shakes.

Whey protein is considered a complete protein, meaning is contains all the essential amino acids. It is also easily digestible for those who don’t have a milk allergy, so the body quickly absorbs the benefits. The most common form used and bought is concentrate. However, it also comes in isolate and hydrolysate. Whey contains branched chain amino acids, particularly leucine. This is worth noting since leucine can help prevent age related muscle loss and increase strength. Whey contains lactokinins, which are ACE-inhibitors. These enzymes help reduce blood pressure. Whey can increase insulin levels, which helps moderate blood sugar. This is great news for diabetics. For example, taking a whey product supplement before a high carbohydrate meal has been shown to moderate blood sugar. Type 2 diabetics should take note of this.

Adding to the list of benefits, whey contains C-reactive protein (CRP), which helps reduce inflammation in the body. It also contains cysteine which is an amino acid needed for glutathione production in the body. Glutathione is a powerful antioxidant. Antioxidants help lower the risk for chronic diseases. For persons with irritable bowel syndrome, whey can help reduce inflammation in the digestive tract. Whey is also satiating, meaning a person feels fuller longer. Protein is one of the most filling macronutrients. As a result, a person might use whey to help lower their weight.

Different packages have different size doses of whey. A typically serving of a protein shake power form contains 20-25 grams of protein. Taking more whey than this is not beneficial to the body, because we can only absorb so much protein at one time. This powder can be simply added to water, or it can be a great addition to a smoothie, yogurt, or baked good.

Whey is a convenient addition to one’s diet with so many benefits. It is readily available and not overly priced. Especially when on the go, whey is a great option. The body appreciates proper fueling, and whey is a great source of ammunition.

11 Jul

Milk has been a staple of the American diet for every generation. Children are told their bones will grow strong when they have a glass of milk. It is our first meal from our mother, but then becomes replaced by another form. For many years, the only type that existed was cow’s milk. Today, almond milk has become an alternative causing a debate questioning which is the better choice.

In the battle of cow’s vs almond milk, the winner might be a matter of personal preference. Here’s how they stack up:


One percent low fat milk contains about 110 calories, 2% contains 130 calories, and whole milk has about 150 calories per cup. 90% of the world’s milk comes from dairy farms. There has been questioning about the cleanliness and humanity of this process. Some even argue that cow’s milk is not actually meant for human consumption. Milk is made up of lactose, which is the most common food allergy in the world. Despite all this, cow’s milk does have quite a bit of nutritional value. In just one cup of milk, there contains 305 milligrams of calcium. This is needed for bone health, our teeth, and blood health. Cow’s milk also has choline which is a nutrient that helps with memory, sleep, and muscle development. It also contains potassium and Vitamin D. The major downfall is that this milk is high in saturated fat. This is an important consideration for person’s with diabetes or heart disease.


Almond milk generally contains fewer calories. Unsweetened almond milk has a mere 30 calories per one cup. The process of making almond milk is similar to brewing coffee. However, the final product does not contain the same amount of nutrients as whole raw almonds. Some of the calcium, fiber, and protein is lost in this process. Therefore, many almond milk products are fortified with nutrients to help make it look comparable to cow’s milk. Almond milk is naturally lactose free which can help those with digestive issues. It is also environmentally sustainable due to the major cultivation of almonds. Almond milk contains healthy Omega 3 fatty acids. This can help lower bad cholesterol levels.

When it comes down to the final winner, the decision is primarily based on a person’s dietary needs. For someone who is trying to lower their cholesterol and keep their blood sugar down, almond milk would be the winner. For someone who is active and still growing and developing, cow’s milk might be the winner. Again, this would all depend if a person is lactose intolerant. The world of milk has changed with many different varieties now available. A bowl of cereal just isn’t a bowl of cereal without milk, no matter what kind.

A new game changer has been the spark in attention for chocolate milk. Both traditional milk and almond milk can come in this tasty flavor too. At the outset, one might question chocolate anything being beneficial to our health, and this beverage is normally a mixture of the milk type with cocoa and other sweeteners (sometimes even high-fructose corn syrup). A little higher in sugar and carbs then most might desire, but the benefits might override these factors. 1 cup has about 200 calories and 30 carbohydrates as well as 28% of the recommended daily intake (RDI) for calcium, 25% RDI for vitamin D, 24% for riboflavin, and 25% for phosphorus. All of these are great for bone health.

Avid exercisers and athletes have become fond of drinking chocolate milk because of its contribution to muscle recovery post-workouts. Here is where the carbs and sugar can actually be beneficially, and it is also important to remember that milk is considered a protein with all the essential amino acids. Studies have not proven the effects of chocolate milk are any better than any other type of recovery sports drink.

Including milk of any form in your diet can be great for you bones and hormones, but that is not the case for everyone. Some people have an intolerance to milk that can cause abdominal pain and bowel problems. A person that is lactose intolerant has a condition in which their small intestine doesn’t produce enough of the enzyme lactase. Lactase is needed to break down and digest dairy, so if you aren’t able to do so then discomfort can result. For some people irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can be triggered by dairy products. This can result in stomach cramping and chronic diarrhea. In this case, milk should certainly be avoided. Some people are also simply allergic to milk. Their body treats it like a foreign substance. Children usually outgrow milk allergies by the age of three. Symptoms include itchy skin and hives after drinking. There are supplements that can help a person break down and digest dairy if they desire to have it. This way they don’t have to completely eliminate them.

As adults, we don’t always drink milk like we used to as kids. Maybe a little with cereal, oats, or coffee here and there, but overall, we don’t have it with dinner anymore. Milk is a tricky portion distortion problem for some people. Have you ever added more milk because you have a little cereal left? Have you ever thought cookies and milk sounded good and then you keep eating the cookies, so you keep drinking the milk with them? Sticking to drinking just once cup is out of the question many times. For kids, milk is certainly the better option versus soda or sugary fruit juice. Families buy gallons for their kids. There’s a type for everyone’s taste buds depending on what type you buy. Skim or 2% are the most popular options, but then again, some people even like buttermilk. Milk is great for our bodies, and well, chocolate milk makes it case, but not too convincingly. Let’s face it any excuse to add some chocolate to anything can be attractive. Our society keeps the cows busy, but certainly not by those who are lactose intolerant.

03 Jul

Somedays you just feel a little nap could serve you well. A long night, less than usual sleep, a hard day, or just needing a little down time…..whatever the reason is, a nap typically feels restorative and rejuvenating to face the remainder of the day. Some people can take naps very easily, allowing themselves to shut their eyes and distractions out for a short period of time. Others struggle to just stop the day momentarily and pause their mind and body to allow themselves to take a nap. Sometimes you can be so exhausted that the nap just happens and you dozed off unintentionally.

There are actually different types of naps we take because they can serve a different purpose for you.

1. Recovery nap: This is a nap which functions to make up for sleep loss.

2. Appetitive nap: You might just enjoy taking a nap and it can serve a pleasurable purpose for you.

3. Prophylactic nap: This type of nap is common among nurses or people who work night shifts, as they prepare for the lack of sleep or different sleep period that will take place as a result.

4. Essential nap: The common cold often requires the body to use a little extra rest to recover. The immune system needs the nap to keep fighting for you.

5. Fulfillment nap: These types of naps are those that children take because their bodies actually require more sleep for growth and development.

The duration of a nap can very because your body might nap until it is ready, or you might only have an allotted period of time to nap. Typically, a nap can last anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes, which have also coined the term “power naps”. Children are the most common longer nap takers because their body will have them sleep as long as it needs to.

Napping has many benefits with the most obvious being making you feel less tired and sleepy. Feeling more awake in turn helps you to be more alert and better perform tasks. Memory can also be heightened. Operating on a drowsy mind is not safe or even enjoyable. This is especially true when driving.

However, napping can have negative side effects such as making it harder for you to go to sleep when it is your regular bedtime. Napping later in the day can especially cause this. You have to really let your mind relax and not worry about what is going on during the day and sometimes setting an alarm can help you fall asleep because you know you won’t oversleep or miss out on what lies ahead.

It’s hard to believe as adults that we might have hated taking naps when we were younger. Now, we would love to have the ability to do so to break apart our day. Naps are nice and don’t always get to happen, and sometimes we are so caught up in the fast-paced lives we live that it takes removing ourselves from our environment (going on vacation) to actually allow a solid nap to take place. We need our sleep and naps communicate this to our bodies and minds.