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SimplyProtein Blog

  • Saccharin’s Back!

    saccharin-300x300Sweet Saccharin!

    Saccharin, an artificial sweetener like sucralose, aspartame, and acesulfame potassium, was popular back in the day because it offered a cheap, calorie-free alternative to sugar. In the 1970s, however, research on the sweetener and its effects on the body led to global concern that it might cause cancer. As a result, Saccharin was banned in the U.S. and Canada.

    That was then…

    Fast-forward a few decades – after more research and more tests, officials have now been convinced it was a false alarm, and that saccharin can safely be added to our diets once again.

    Back in the game!

    Some may be surprised to find this, once-presumed-dangerous, sweetener Continue reading

  • Sugar and the Brain

    brain1-300x188It has been proven again and again that a high-sugar diet can lead to health problems such as weight gain, obesity, diabetes and heart disease. Sugar also attacks another, very crucial, part of our bodies that we sometimes forget – the brain. Studies show that excessive intake of sugar (in any form) can impair cognitive abilities and have a damaging effect on memory.

    Researchers at University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) conducted a six-week test on rats to examine the effects sugar can have on the brain. A group of rats were given a fructose solution instead of drinking water, another group were given only water, and a third group were given the fructose solution along with Omega 3 fatty acids in the form of flaxseed and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid).

    The rats in the fructose group had Continue reading

  • Fruits vs Vegetables: Which is Better?

    grapesHow many times in your life have you heard “Eat your fruits and vegetables”? Probably a lot! Now, what would you say if I told you that-that might not be the best advice for maintaining a healthy diet? It is true, fruits and vegetables are an integral part of any diet but fruits and vegetables are NOT the same thing! Many of us have come to believe that fruits and veggies are automatically good for you and while these foods are better for you than other processed options, too much fruit can actually be harmful to your health. Continue reading

  • Mindfulness and Muscle

    powerhouseThis week, we have Charlene San Jenko of PowHerHouse. PowHerHouse connects women to build a stronger and better community. Empowering the mind, body and soul, they have retreats, events, and online support for every woman.

    Charlene gives some tips for optimizing your body and mind and how both are connected in this busy world that we live in.

    There are many similarities between muscle and mindfulness and the roles they both play in our lives: Continue reading

  • We Practice What We Preach!

    Lemon_Coconut_CND_Dec_10-300x106Lately we’ve been telling you to cut sugar from your diet, so we decided to take our own advice! Introducing our new, 1 gram sugar bars! All the same great flavours, but with only 1 gram of sugar!

    We’ve warned you to be on the lookout for sweetening syrups, so we’ve cut the brown rice syrup from our bars and increased the fibre.

    • The sugar count in our bars has now gone from 3g to 1g!
    • The fibre count has gone from 4g to 7g!

    Enjoy!

  • Doting on Dates – A Dangerous Game

    There is a common misconception out there that, as long as the source is natural (say, from a fruit) adding a little sweetness to the foods we consume regularly really isn’t so bad. So I can’t have a spoonful of sugar? How about a spoonful of dates?

    Just add… dates?

    The date is an ancient fruit that has long been a staple of the Middle Eastern diet. It is a known source of niacin, copper, magnesium and iron – all good things. It offers a moist, sticky texture and an intense sweet flavor. And we’ve managed to incorporate dates into everything from desserts, to salads, to smoothies! We love dates, we just can’t get enough!

    Ah, this is where the problem lies. Because of the reduced water content in dried dates, the sugar content is very high.  Continue reading

  • Agave: Magical Sweetener? or More of the Same?

    In an effort to cut refined sugar from their diets, many people gravitate towards other, seemingly healthy, options. Agave syrup is a popular go-to for those who know sugar is bad, but don’t want to sacrifice that sweet, sweet flavor.

    About Agave
    Agave syrup is made from the blue agave plant, which is grown primarily in Mexico. The root of the plant is a starchy substance that, through enzyme, chemical and heat processing, produces a sweet syrup that has an almost honey-like consistency. Found in most grocery and health food stores, agave syrup is sold as a substitute for honey and other sweeteners. Sometimes flavoured, the syrups are sold in squeeze tube bottles, and customers are encouraged to go ahead and include it in baking recipes, or drizzle it over cereal or yogurt for a breakfast treat.

    Oh, so sweet!
    Although agave syrup actually contains more Continue reading

  • Why Should You Avoid Fructose

    Don’t be fooled by fancy labels and names; harmful sweeteners are hidden in our daily food products and a majority of the time, we don’t even know it! The issue? Canadians don’t know what ‘sugar’ refers to. A recent article in the Globe & Mail explains that a mass amount of the sweetener added to food is actually high fructose corn syrup, which – by many experts – is thought to be more harmful than sugar itself. However, in Canada high fructose corn syrup is referred to and labeled as glucose-fructose, which causes label readers to mistake it for a different ingredient when looking for added sugars. HFCS is considered to be harmful due to the negative metabolic effects of one major ingredient when consumed in large amounts: Fructose.

    The body metabolizes glucose and fructose very differently. Fructose is one of the many forms of sugars that can cause long-term damage to our bodies. When an individual’s diet contains high amounts of fructose, the liver starts turning the fructose into fat causing weight gain, which in turn can cause elevated blood pressure, heart disease among other potential issues whereas the body primarily uses glucose as a form of energy.

    Large quantities of fructose can be found in Continue reading

  • How a Low Sugar Diet can Lead to a Healthier & Longer Life

    With new research stating that added sugars increase the risk of mortality from heart disease, why not take that as a challenge to rid your diet of those sugar filled snacks and convert to better, healthier alternatives? JAMA Internal Medicine recently released a study claiming that added sugars make up at least 10% of calories in the average Americans daily diet, with one in ten people obtaining a shocking 25% of their calories from added sugar. The study only focused on added sugars to processed drinks and food – leaving out naturally occurring sugars that appear in liquids and fruits meaning the average persons sugar consumption likely surpasses the numbers collected by the study.

    Many of these processed foods are a typical snack for a busy individual – chips, granola bars, pop, cookies and even some fruits such as dates, mangos and bananas contain high amounts of hidden sugars that many of us are unaware of, and what’s worse is we don’t Continue reading

  • A Simple Ingredient That Keeps You Full

    FibreEverybody is looking for a quick fix, especially when it comes to dieting. There are tonnes of supplements, shakes, and snacks that claim you can lose multiple dress sizes in a week! What really is an ingredient that will keep you full and calm your hunger pangs?

    Fibre

    Fibre not only keeps you physically full, but during digestion, acetate is produced, which tells your brain that you’ve eaten enough. You should have around 35g of fibre a day. Don’t ignore other foods and make sure to look at the big picture and have a wide variety of healthy foods. The great thing is fibre can be found in many nutritious foods (containing protein, vitamins and minerals). Inulin is also a source of fibre (found in many packaged goods). It is derived from chicory root and is a prebiotic (a non-digestible substance that promotes the development of good bacteria in the gut).

    Try including one of these high fibre foods into each meal:

    • Beans (black beans, kidneys) in soups and salads
    • Leafy vegetables for your wraps or stir-fries
    • Fruits for dessert

    I often have beans or oats readily available in my pantry. Convenience is a simple trick to make something a habit. Overtime, creating balanced meals, high in fibre will be easy. Not only does fibre help weight loss and obesity, it is also key to lowering cholesterol, helping with heart disease and maintaining a healthy gut.

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