What You NEED to Know about Plastic Water Bottles

While plastic water bottles may seem convenient and inexpensive, there are definitely a few reasons to reconsider your water drinking habits.

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Plastic water bottles contain BPA (Bisphenol A), which is also used in compact disks and the lining of cans. A 2007 report by the organization Environment California, showed that when heated, “five popular brands of BPA containing plastic baby bottles leached high levels of bisphenol A.”

Many plastic water bottles are left in the sun or in a hot environment upon transport. When the water bottle is heated slightly, there is a high chance of BPA leaching into the water. A lot of people also leave their water bottles in the car during the day. This is a HUGE no no.

In a study of lab rats, BPA exposure was linked to changes in the brain and reproductive system. There is also concern that BPA may lead to increased risk of prostate cancer, breast cancer, ovarian cysts, endometriosis and even early puberty.

The problem is that overall bottled water consumption is increasing. “The new BMC data show that the overall consumption of bottled water increased by 6.2 percent and bottled water sales were up 6.7 percent.” There are huge health and environmental concerns with the continuous rise in bottled water consumption.

I used to drink out of plastic water bottles. I now have an in-home water filtration system and use a reusable water bottle. The best options for reusable water bottles are:

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The benefits of carrying a reusable water bottle with you is that you will drink more water and there is no chance of BPA contamination. Plus, you will be saving lots of $$!!!

“Bottled Water Costs!  Assuming you buy cheapo bottled water Walmart at $10.88 per case / 24 x .5 Liters. This equals $0.45 per bottle of water. For a family of 4 who each drink two bottles of water per day = 8 btl x .45 = $3.60 per day. Per year that totals = $1,314.00,  so your 5 year total is $1,314.00 x 5 = $6,570.00″

As you can see, plastic water bottles are not your best option. I recommend installing a water filtration system to your faucet at home and at work and drinking out of reusable BPA-free water bottles.

Click here if you are interested in finding out the best water filtration system options.

Your Best Options for In-home Water Filtration

The adult body is made up of at least 60% water. Good quality water is vital of optimal health. I suggest installing a good quality water filter in your home. By doing so, you will save at least $5000 in the next 5 years. And, you will dramatically improve the quality of your drinking water.

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There are several water filtration systems that you can install in your house. Some people have a full-house water filtration system and some choose to install the filter just in their kitchen. The best water filtration systems are:

  • Reverse Osmosis- filters out fouride, bacteria, parasites, pesticides, heavy metals and basic minerals from the water. If you choose to use a reverse osmosis filter, most of them contain a carbon block which will also remove solvents from your water. You MUST add back “trace minerals” to your drinking water if you use reverse osmosis filters. They can be found at your local health food store.
  • Solid Carbon filters out chlorine, parasites, pesticides and solvents. A carbon filter is less expensive than reverse osmosis and as you can see, it still does a good job at eliminating the top contaminants. Carbon filters must be replaced annually (sometimes more regularly, depending on how much water you use). It is a great second option to reverse osmosis.

A lot of people will order the bigger gallon jugs of water from spark lets or arrowhead. The truth is that those companies do not filter their water efficiently. The water bottling industry is all about making money, not about consumer health.

Another option that people tend to lean towards is a Brita filter. While a Brita filter is cheap and convenient, it does not a good quality water filter. I would suggest an in-home water filtration system, as mentioned above.

Contact a local water filtration company to ask about a monthly plan. I pay $27 per month which included installation, services and maintenance. You also have the option to purchase the unit online and have someone install it.

If you live in San Diego, a great company to call is: www.sandiegopurewater.com

I LOVE the taste of my filtered water. Trust me, you will notice the difference too.

Pre-Workout Nutrition

images-1Your nutrition choices can either support your hard-work in the gym or they can hinder your chances of reaching your goals. Plenty of people do not like to eat anything before their workouts. This is a HUGE mistake. The body needs energy in order to get optimal results.

We need to wake up our metabolism up in order to burn fat. With nothing in your stomach, your body will burn muscle instead of fat. To rev your metabolism up, you should eat (at least a little bit) before you work out.

It is also good to eat within a 1 hour period after your workout. During this post-workout period your metabolism is working at peak levels. You want to make sure that the body is able to burn fat during this time instead of muscle.

Each individual needs a different ratio of protein to carbohydrates to fats in their diet. For this reason, I could not tell you what the “perfect” pre-workout snack for you. (That is unless you come in for a nutritional analysis*). Even if you don’t know the “perfect” ratios for your body, it is best to at least combine a carbohydrate, protein and a fat into your pre-workout snack.

Here are a few good options that you can choose from. It is important to notice how you feel after you eat. You might want to eat 30 minutes before your workout so that you have time to digest your food. You may want to alternate between these options and figure out which option is best for you.

1. 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt with 1 Tbsp flax seeds and 5-6 chopped almonds

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2. 1/2 a Rise protein bar or 1/2 a Jay Rob protein bar.

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3. An apple with peanut butter and a hard-boiled egg

4. Strawberry and Kale Smoothie OR Strawberry Banana Smoothie:

1/2 banana, 2-3 strawberries, 1/2 cup almond milk, 1 Tbsp peanut butter, 1/2 scoop protein powder (I like vanilla vega) and 2 ice cubes

If you can’t get some protein in then at least combine a quality carbohydrate and a healthy fat.

What do you usually eat before you workout? Please share!

*E-mail me at nourishedbalance@gmail.com to set up an initial consultation

Yoga For EVERY Athlete

Well, I am a little bit put off by the fact that Rich Roll just wrote about the exact topic that I was going to write about this week on my blog. However, since he was an Olympic athlete and he further validates my philosophy, I am very pleased to share his article with you.

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-4806/Why-Every-Athlete-Should-Do-Yoga.html

My Yoga- Athlete Paradigm

I have phased in and out of yoga since I was 16 years old. Sometimes I am super into it and sometimes I can’t convince myself to make time for it. Every time I return to my yoga practice, I gain more insight as to how yoga has the power to make me a better person. I can always apply what I learn in class to my everyday life.

Some athletes would rather spend more time training than spending time on yoga. In reality, taking the time to incorporate yoga into your workout regimen actually improves your capabilities when you are training. Yoga not only increases the flexibility of your muscles, it also increases the flexibility of your mental capacity. The more control you have over your mental state, the more you are capable of achieving.

It takes some time to find the kind of yoga that suites you. Since there are so many different types of yoga and so many different teaching styles, you have to be open to a little bit of experimentation. Some classes are more spiritually challenging while others are more physically challenging. I really like to have a balance of these two elements. I like to walk out of yoga feeling like I got a  workout both mentally and physically. Other athletes really need the restorative yoga to counteract the intensity in their workouts.

No matter what type of yoga you choose, you can be sure that your athletic performance will benefit.