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    Monthly Archives: June 2010

Can Wii Sports and Fitness Keep You Fit?
Written by June 28, 2010

Ruth Ann Carpenter, MS, RD

Lead Integrator
Health Integration, LLC

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More than half of U.S. adults play video games with one in five playing daily or almost every day.1  Video games are gaining popularity, especially those that use arm gestures and motions or force plates to control the system.  Sedentary individuals who like video games may find these more active types of video games attractive.  But is the intensity of these video games high enough to provide health benefits? Japanese2 researchers investigated the energy cost of theWii Fit Plus videos for yoga, resistance, balance and aerobic exercise and Wii Sports including golf, bowling, baseball, tennis and boxing.  They measured caloric

First Glimpse of New Dietary Guidelines
Written by June 25, 2010

Rachel Huber, MPH, RD

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

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Just last week the 2010 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) released it’s Advisory Report for the 2010 Dietary Guidelines (DG). Prepared by 13 national nutrition and health experts, this report provides the latest scientific evidence around a variety of food and nutrition topics. The public has 30 days to comment on the document, which will be used to develop the specific DG, set to be released by the end of 2010. Updated every 5 years (since 1980), the DG are used for government nutrition programs and education, as well as by dietitians and health professionals to help educate people about eating

Effects of Low and High Volume Stretching on Bench Press Performance
Written by June 21, 2010

Gina Cortese-Shipley, MS

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

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Warm-up and Static Stretching Is a Common Routine Prior to Performance: Stretching as part of warm up is commonly integrated as part of the pre-competition routine for competitive athletes and recreational fitness participants in order to reduce injury and improve muscular performance. Previous recent research 1 suggests that acute stretching before maximal muscular performance may hinder the ability of the muscle to produce force.  Two theories to explain this include mechanical factors such as reduced stiffness on the musculotendinous unit and/or neural factors such as altered motor control or a greater autogenic inhibition.1 However, this study investigated stretching volume, rest

When Do You Need More Than Plain Water?
Written by June 18, 2010

Rachel Huber, MPH, RD

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

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If you read Monday’s blog you know that high outdoor temperatures and humidity (like we experience here in TX during the summer!) coupled with exercise can lead to extreme dehydration. But, it won’t if you make a conscious effort to stay hydrated before, during, and after your physical activity. How do you do this? Here are the fluid recommendations again: • Start hydrating 4 hours before activity by drinking 2-3 cups (16-24 ounces) of fluid. • If signs of dehydration are present despite this (i.e. not needing to urinate), drink another 1-2 cups (8-16 ounces) 2 hours before activity. • Drink 6-12 ounces every

Hydrating for Physical Activity in the Heat: Don't Wait for a Sprinkler to Save You!
Written by June 14, 2010

Gina Cortese-Shipley, MS

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

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I was out running a few Saturday’s ago and was plagued by extreme thirst. It was in the morning but as it turns out, unknown to me, it was the hottest day we had had this summer, hitting triple digits in the afternoon. So it was already pretty hot when I started out. How hot I didn’t realize until I later checked the temperature and humidity; 88°F, 70% humidity. This put the heat index at close to 100! Humidity, especially when combined with that high of a temperature, reduces the effectiveness of sweating to cool the body by reducing the evaporation

The Tire Flip
Written by June 7, 2010

Gina Cortese-Shipley, MS

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

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One of the popular trends in fitness, functional training was recently discussed. Another popular trend in fitness is the usage of boot camps and other type of fitness classes. Many of these classes use untraditional exercises and functional exercises. One exercise that is sometimes used is the tire flip. This is an exercise that is sometimes seen in strongman events. The exercise normally uses large tires. Many times the tires are from a tractor or other big truck. Individuals crouch down into a low squatted position in front of the tire. Then grab the bottom of one side of the

What Happens When Trans Fats are Taken Out?
Written by June 3, 2010

Rachel Huber, MPH, RD

Associate Director of Education
The Cooper Institute

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Food manufacturers and restaurants are under increasing pressure to eliminate trans fats, or partially hydrogenated oils from foods. Trans fats, fats created by adding hydrogen to vegetable oil to make it firmer, are heart unhealthy as they raise "bad" LDL-cholesterol, lower "good" HDL-cholesterol, and induce an inflammatory response at even low levels of intake (e.g., 2 to 4% of total calories).  But removing trans fats isn't a simple feat. Trans fats make food products look bigger and better, last longer, and cost less. Cakes, cookies, crackers, bread, and margarine rely heavily on the functionality of partially hydrogenated oils for texture

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