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Young woman carving food eating near refrigerator at nightPeople come to the café continually and ask about food and nutrition. They often ask me about weight maintenance and protein consumption. I’m not a nutritionist, but it is surprising how many people overlook both the commonsense answers, and the basic science of how our bodies use food.

One of the big problems with weight loss (and weight maintenance, as well) is hidden calories. An example? Adding peanut butter to a smoothie. On average, the addition of peanut butter to a smoothie will add roughly 200 calories!

Common sense? Don’t add peanut butter to a smoothie.

Even all natural peanut butter can add as much as 120 calories. People use the excuse that they want to get in some protein. What they mean is that peanut butter tastes good. What they really mean is that they like things that taste good. What they really really mean is that they want chocolate and beer to be health food.

Got to cut down on the Pabst Blue Ribbon, honey, my muscles are nearly splitting my shirtsleeves.

Jack LaLanne, fitness pioneer, said, “If it tastes good, spit it out.” Here’s why:

There are only about 8 grams of protein in that 200 calorie serving of peanut butter. The U.S. RDA for the average male is about 60 grams protein. To achieve muscular hypertrophy (big guns), it is pretty much agreed that the average male would need at least three times that amount.

A 200 calorie serving of skinless chicken breast will give you approximately 30 grams of protein.

Conclusion? Chicken breast, blender, straw. Now on special at the Atrium café.


-Bill Kurklen

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