Sheena and John discuss current topics that are somewhat controversial in their areas of expertise, nutrition and fitness respectively. John finally gets a correct answer in “Sheena Talks About a Food” in which Sheena also provides listeners with a simple, yet great recipe, with the “food of the week”. Original airdate April 15, 2018.
John Jackson: Good afternoon, and welcome to Fit2BTide with Sheena and John on 90.7, The Capstone. If you’re just joining us for the first time, we want to thank you for tuning in this afternoon and spending part of your Sunday afternoon with us. If you’re a regular listener, if you’re out there.
Sheena Gregg: As I know all of you are.
John Jackson: Yeah. We know who you are, [inaudible 00:00:29], and … No. Hopefully we have a loyal following out there. What do you think, Sheena? [crosstalk 00:00:35] feel it?
Sheena Gregg: I think so. Yeah, how many family members do we have listening?
John Jackson: Yeah, no, between the two of us and Middleton, Steven Middleton out there.
Sheena Gregg: That’s right. That’s right.
John Jackson: Got to throw him a bone. We haven’t this semester, but …
Sheena Gregg: Sure. Yeah. There you go. Shout out right there.
John Jackson: Steven’s still listening to us in his shop every Sunday afternoon.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. We’ll have to bring him back as a reward for being number one fan.
John Jackson: He’s still terrified of talking on the radio for some reason. He gets all jittery when I ask him about doing this.
Sheena Gregg: I know. I think he’s starstruck, honestly.
John Jackson: Maybe. That’s why he asks me for my autograph all the time at work.
Sheena Gregg: Probably.
John Jackson: Yeah. Exactly. Well, so how are things for you with wrapping up the semester over at the student health center?
Sheena Gregg: They are rocking and rolling. You got folks that are coming in and all of sudden wanting that spring break body. They want that summer body, so they’re trying to figure out what to do with that, or I think you have a lot of folks that are like, “Hey, I’m going to be home for the summer. My schedule is not going to be as hardcore as it has been at school. I want to capitalize on self-care, including changing up my nutrition. I want to get in for an appointment before the semester’s over so I’ve got a game plan for the summer,” and I love that. You’ve got people that are wanting to be proactive with that, so that’s great.
John Jackson: I’ve never thought about that before. I mean could you say roughly what percentage of … ? That’s great that people would plan ahead like that [crosstalk 00:02:02]
Sheena Gregg: Sure.
John Jackson: Most people going back home to an environment that they would probably be more comfortable in. That’s neat that they plan ahead like that. Could you say what percentage or … Is it high?
Sheena Gregg: I would say for folks that are planning for the summer, anywhere between 25 to 50%. So that may be some that they know they’re going to have a low-key summer and they want to really practice on that self-care. The other 25% of that may be folks that are going to travel across the country into a high-impact internship, and they’re like, “Oh, man, this is going to be crazy. I need a plan for food because my schedule’s going to be even more stressful than it had been at school.”
It’s fun seeing that too and getting students into a groove of potentially thinking about meal planning or maybe making healthier choices when they’re going out to eat. They might be an internship situation where they’re going to be forced to eat out all the time and maybe while they’ve been here at school they had their apartment and could cook all the time. So, just really equipping people for the summer in general I would say at this point in time is taking up about 50% of my appointments, which is fantastic.
John Jackson: That’s cool. Random question, and this just occurred to me.
Sheena Gregg: Sure.
John Jackson: I had a friend back when the Olympics were in China. He took a graduate class over and they spent some time at the Olympics and touring China and all that, but he had to go over and he spent a couple weeks over there preparing ahead of time. One of the things that he said to me was, “You would not be able to survive over there,” and just knowing how my eating habits … This is random, but if I’m going to someplace where I don’t have access to good old American food, could you help me … If I go to China, knowing what I eat, could you help me?
Sheena Gregg: I could, and that’s another thing too. You have a lot of students that are traveling overseas, and a lot of them are savvy enough to get to know the community area that they are in so they know if they have access to a grocery store that has Westernized food and everything else. You’ve got other folks that are at the mercy of what their host family is serving.
Actually, I had a student one time, she was like, “I had a very specific eating schedule as a student here, and then I had my host family that really just introduced me to the magical wonder of having white rice at every meal,” because she was in China, and she said, “It was so cool.” She said, “It’s not how I normally would have eaten, but I wanted to be so respectful of that culture.” So, I think sometimes respect for that culture tends to override what someone’s personal food preferences are, so it’s kind of interesting.
It’s just one of those things you’ve got to navigate. I did have a faculty member. I know we got to take a break in just a second, but she’s actually responsible for taking a group of students every other summer to all the fashion capitals across the world, and she is a John Jackson eater, i.e. picky, and so she had a stipend for how much to spend on her eating in each of the countries. She literally ate Chipotle in every single country that they were in.
John Jackson: I could do that.
Sheena Gregg: So stuff happens. There are a lot of Westernized restaurants across the world, so yeah.
John Jackson: Interesting. Interesting.
Sheena Gregg: Yes.
John Jackson: I’m glad to know that you could help me navigate those waters if I ever had to do that [crosstalk 00:05:37]
Sheena Gregg: Of course, but I guess we should take a break, huh?
John Jackson: Quick break. I do have a couple more questions about that before we get into our topic, and we have probably two of the best guests that we’ve had all semester with us, joining us today.
Sheena Gregg: I would agree. I’m kind of blown away, but y’all, were teasing you right now. You got to stick around, find out who it is. You are listening to Fit2BTide with Sheena and John on 90.7, The Capstone. …
John Jackson: Welcome back to Fit2BTide with Sheena and John on 90.7, The Capstone. We’re back in this Sunday afternoon to continue our conversation that we just started. I do have a couple of questions for you about traveling abroad, and then we can get into … I guess we can introduce our guests today and get into our topic.
For those of you that are just joining us though for maybe the first time, a quick overview of what we’re about. We try to hit wellness topics, and I think we’ve done, as we’re winding down the semester, I think we’ve done a really good job, thanks to you, as always, of-
Sheena Gregg: Well, [crosstalk 00:06:59]
John Jackson: Yeah, you know so many people, but of having a very well-rounded show when you look at the different things that contribute to wellness. I think we’ve had a good semester.
Sheena Gregg: I agree. There’s been a lot of diversity, and I think just showing people how dynamic the concept of health is. I think sometimes we think about the concept of health and just think of it as merely being the absence of disease or thinking of just the synonymous words of fitness or nutrition, but health just encompasses so much. So, that’s why I’ve loved just all the cool guests that we’ve had, including today’s guests, so yeah.
John Jackson: Yeah, absolutely. Let’s go ahead and break the ice on that one. [crosstalk 00:07:42] keep everybody waiting.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. For sure.
John Jackson: Our guests today are us.
Sheena Gregg: That’s right. Dr. John Jackson, and Sheena Gregg, the foremost nutrition and fitness experts in the country.
John Jackson: Yeah, absolutely.
Sheena Gregg: Or at least maybe Tuscaloosa County or in this room. However.
John Jackson: Yeah. We know for sure in this room today.
Sheena Gregg: Yes, yes, because our producer just left the room for a minute, so he might have some knowledge, but yeah.
John Jackson: Even he doesn’t want to listen to us anymore. Oh, Cameron. We love you, man. Hey, real quickly though, before we-
Sheena Gregg: Sure.
John Jackson: Let’s call this Sheena’s Nutrition Corner. We’re going to put baby back in the corner, right?
Sheena Gregg: Okay, yes, for sure.
John Jackson: For those of you that don’t know, that was a reference to-
Sheena Gregg: Last week’s show and Dirty Dancing.
John Jackson: Okay. There we go.
Sheena Gregg: Yeah, so you got to catch up. Our show’s online, so yeah.
John Jackson: Yeah, and we’re on top of these cultural references.
Sheena Gregg: That’s right.
John Jackson: Is that what you call that?
Sheena Gregg: That’s right.
John Jackson: Anyway, going back real quickly, the one question I wanted to ask you about going back to China specifically, because we were talking about that. Fast food in different countries, it’s not always fast food like you would find here.
Sheena Gregg: No, and you could have whatever kind of say chain restaurant … Just for sake of example we’ll say like a McDonald’s or whatever else. The menu options in China are not going to be like the ones in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, and I can even tell you from personal experience, having visited the Philippines, in the Philippines at the McDonald’s there, there is spaghetti on the menu.
John Jackson: Really?
Sheena Gregg: Would you ever think about having spaghetti at McDonald’s or another-
John Jackson: No, but I-
Sheena Gregg: … fast food restaurant? Yeah.
John Jackson: If I was in the Philippines, I might have to.
Sheena Gregg: Right. Yeah. Sure.
John Jackson: That’s interesting. Are there staples pretty much that you would find at any McDonald’s though or any-
Sheena Gregg: You probably could. I think with the burgers. Now one thing that I will say, and I don’t know if this is just the Philippines. China may be like this too, but the pickles on burgers at fast food restaurants, it was only the sweet pickles. They did not have the regular, I guess what I call more of the salty, acidic type of pickles that we have here. It would be like the sweet pickles that we have but don’t necessarily think about putting those on our burgers. So, I don’t know. I need to do some research on why that is. Is that flavor profile just not very popular in those countries, or they just really love those sweet pickles? I don’t know.
John Jackson: Well, I can tell you one thing, and we’ll move on to our topics for today.
Sheena Gregg: Sure.
John Jackson: As a pickle hater, I will confess something on the air that no one’s ever heard me say out loud before except for my wife.
Sheena Gregg: Oh, I’m holding my breath. Okay.
John Jackson: Yeah, if you’re ready for this. I have resorted to, at times, occasionally, saying that I was allergic to pickles-
Sheena Gregg: Really?
John Jackson: … To make sure that they don’t just take them off, or-
Sheena Gregg: Yes, because then you have that pickle juice that’s …
John Jackson: That you can’t get rid of.
Sheena Gregg: Yeah. Now we have other chains in … So, Chick-fil-A, they have pickles on their sandwiches. Do you adamantly say … Do you eat there or … ?
John Jackson: I will say there are certain places in Tuscaloosa that are really good about getting it right and you don’t have to worry about it. Okay, I’m going to try to make myself feel a little bit better about this. I’m going to say that if I were to eat a pickle, something bad really could happen to me because I hate it that bad. So, is it possible to say that I’m allergic to it for that reason?
Sheena Gregg: Maybe allergic is not the appropriate word. I would say you have an intolerance.
John Jackson: There we go. [crosstalk 00:11:43]
Sheena Gregg: Whether that is something very legitimate happening within your GI system or there is such a huge mind-body connection that mentally, because you have abstained and have chosen and decided no pickles, that that would result in some tummy aches because mentally your mind is starting to give those signals to your tummy. “Reject this. Reject this. Reject this.”
John Jackson: We wouldn’t get that far. We’re talking immediate projectile vomiting, okay?
Sheena Gregg: So, I’ll just say an intolerance at this point, if we want to be as accurate as possible.
John Jackson: Good … always, I could sit and talk to you all day because you’re full of such good information.
Sheena Gregg: Sometimes it’s random information. I might be good at doing trivia one night with just really random topics.
John Jackson: I’ve seen you do that before. Yes. I will say that it’s not just for this show. I really could sit and listen to you all day. I’ve heard you do so many talks, and we’re going to get on with this show here in a second. I’ve heard you do so many talks, and you’re like … I used to have a baseball coach that we would do camps for kids. I would try to get with him. I was a pitcher. He was a hitting coach, so I didn’t get to spend a lot of time around him, but he had to give the same talk over and over throughout the day. I could listen to him all day going on and on with the same talk. You’re the same way. I could listen to you because I always learn something from you all the time.
Sheena Gregg: Well, thank you. Thank you, thank you. I appreciate it. That will inspire me to continue to do well in this field, so thank you.
John Jackson: I want to test your knowledge today.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. Let’s do it.
John Jackson: No trivia here today. What we’re talking about today, guys, and hopefully this will be a good learning experience for everybody, not just me.
Sheena Gregg: I’ll try.
John Jackson: What we decided to do today, we haven’t spent a lot of time talking about our two strong suits, the fitness and nutrition. So, we came up with some … what we consider controversial topics.
Sheena Gregg: I agree. Yes.
John Jackson: Just going to toss out some questions to each other about those things, and we’ll see how this goes. First thing I have to jump on with you is the gluten-free diet thing is huge now. You hear people talking about it all the time. One of the things that I did read is that studies are starting to show that it increases the risk of type 2 diabetes. Is that correct?
Sheena Gregg: It can.
John Jackson: It can.
Sheena Gregg: I think it really depends on how someone approaches a gluten-free diet. Of course, I would tell anyone who has a medical reason to abstain from gluten, whether they have celiac disease or they’re on the spectrum for gluten intolerance, please, please abstain from gluten, but you have folks that are choosing to abstain from gluten because they believe it would be helpful in terms of weight loss. When you think about the products that have gluten, essentially gluten is a protein that is in wheat, barley, and rye products. So what I will sometimes notice with my folks that are going gluten-free is they might … a food that would naturally or typically have gluten, like say pasta or their favorite crackers or whatever else, they’ll buy the gluten-free version of that.
What they don’t realize is that when companies are taking gluten out of a product that would normally have gluten, they’ve got to replace that flavor with something else, and so usually they’re going to add more sugar to that product, more fat to that product, more sodium, so sometimes those gluten-free pretzels or Oreos might have more calories or sodium or fat or whatever else compared to the ones that did contain gluten. So that’s where you could definitely see there being a higher risk for type 2 diabetes because they’re replacing it with another type of processed carbohydrate. The absence of gluten isn’t necessarily making something more healthy.
I think the better choice would be to go with a naturally gluten-free product, like maybe having rice or sweet potatoes or quinoa, so you’re still getting those good carbs in there but not necessarily choosing a gluten-free food that would normally have gluten in it, like, “Oh, this special sugary cereal that would normally have gluten. I’m going to choose gluten-free,” and then they don’t realize the company’s had to add a bunch of other things that aren’t so great to make up for the fact there’s no gluten in there, so yeah.
John Jackson: So bottom line [inaudible 00:16:06] Sheena’s take is don’t go gluten-free unless you need to for medical purposes.
Sheena Gregg: Correct. Correct. There’s a lot of messaging that’s out there. Of course, the food industry is politically driven and everything else, and so just be an informed consumer, but yeah, like you said, bottom line is don’t go gluten-free unless you have to.
John Jackson: Great. I know we got to take a quick break, but I have a follow-up question for you after the break.
Sheena Gregg: Okay, y’all. You heard it. We got to take another break. You are listening to Fit2BTide with Sheena and John on 90.7, The Capstone. …
John Jackson: We survived another break.
Sheena Gregg: We did.
John Jackson: We survived another break. You’re listening to Fit2BTide with Sheena and John on 90.7, The Capstone. We’re continuing our conversation here with Sheena and myself. I want to jump right back into this, you know?
Sheena Gregg: Yes.
John Jackson: We’re talking nutrition and fitness questions, some controversial-type issues, and you just finished giving a great explanation of gluten-free diets and when that’s appropriate. That’s really good information. Something I don’t know much about-
Sheena Gregg: Sure.
John Jackson: … that has just recently come to my attention is low FODMAP eating.
Sheena Gregg: Yes.
John Jackson: Okay. I said that correctly [crosstalk 00:17:38]
Sheena Gregg: You did. I’m very proud of you. When it comes to low FODMAP, you may or may not have seen it in the media. I have been really exposed to it over the past few years. For anyone who may be in a circumstance where you have IBS, aka irritable bowel syndrome, you might be working with a gastrointestinal specialist that has recommended you go on a low FODMAP diet. So sometimes when people do the research on their own, they’re like, “Oh my goodness. I’m going to have to cut out all this food.”
Basically FODMAP is an acronym for Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, And Polyols. Essentially it’s a group of foods, they’re specifically carbohydrates, and going on a low FODMAP diet isn’t something that someone would have to go on forever. Typically, it’s what’s considered an elimination diet, so you would go on it for about two to six weeks. FODMAP-containing foods don’t necessarily cause IBS, but taking FODMAP foods out of your diet can help with IBS symptoms, if that makes sense.
John Jackson: Yes.
Sheena Gregg: Basically, the way these foods works is that there’s certain groups of the FODMAPs that irritate your stomach because they naturally pull a lot of water into your gut, and that can be very irritating for your GI system. There’s another set of the FODMAPs. Their mechanism of action is they pull in a lot of gas into your GI system. You could visually think of it like a certain group of FODMAPs pull a lot of water into your tummy kind of like filling up a water balloon, and it gets more distended and probably uncomfortable. You could think of the other FODMAPs that put that gas into your system like heating up a hot air balloon. It’s just really … So when you go on this, you’re going to eliminate all those foods all at once, and then there’s different categories that you take out.
So you might be listening and thinking, “Well, what’s a food that is high FODMAP?” I have my list, and so that’s going to be a lot of your foods that have lactose, so milk sugar. Think milk, ice cream, yogurts, different types of cheeses. Also, excess fructose. Fructose is fruit sugar, so apples, mangoes, watermelon, honey, agave, but that’s not to say every fruit is on this list. Other types of foods on the list can include cashews, garlic, onions, dried fruits, mushroom, cauliflower.
When you look at the list, if you were to do research on your own, you might think, “Gosh, there’s a lot I’ve got to cut out,” but you want to look for a list of foods that are low FODMAP as in foods that you can eat, and you would be surprised at like, “Wow, I can still have a very normal, healthy diet. I just got to temporarily cut out the milk and the apples and whatever else.” Then usually gluten-containing foods are going to be part of the FODMAP type thing, so a lot of times you’ll see those correlated.
John Jackson: That’s why. Okay. Great.
Sheena Gregg: Yeah. Oh yeah. For sure. Sorry I went into such a lengthy response with that.
John Jackson: No. That’s great. It’s good information. I’m apparently a FODMAP eater I guess. That sounds like a lot of things that I eat.
Sheena Gregg: Yeah. I’ll show you the legal FODMAP foods, and then you’ll probably be like, “Oh yeah. That’s totally me.”
John Jackson: Yeah, that’s me.
Sheena Gregg: Can we switch gears?
John Jackson: Yes, ma’am.
Sheena Gregg: Can I put you in the hot seat?
John Jackson: Absolutely. I’ll be your guest.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. Thank you. So, thank you, Dr. John Jackson.
John Jackson: Appreciate it. Good to hear.
Sheena Gregg: When we think about fitness, I’ll just say even personally for me, over the past year going into different types of exercise routines at different facilities just so that I could hit all of those aspects of fitness, I’ve heard a lot of different things about static stretching versus dynamic stretching, and I have no idea what that is. Tell me what that is. Please enlighten me.
John Jackson: Well, I will tell you that dynamic stretching is kind of the trend now, and dynamic stretching is basically moving a joint throughout its range of motion while you’re moving. It’s basically a traveling stretch. So think, for example, a lunge without weights, and maybe a walking lunge without weights where you’re covering about a 10 to 20-yard area. It’s basically exercises like that, or stretches like that, I should say.
A great way to see this in action is if you were to get to a baseball game early, okay, my sport. You get to a baseball game early, and you see a lot of the players out stretching on their own, and they’re walking or they’re moving at a … not a fast pace, not a jog, but they’re doing different movements, and that’s what they’re doing is a dynamic stretch.
That’s the trend now as opposed to the old, what is static stretching. It used to be the only kind of stretching for the most part that was recommended where you take a joint to the end of its range of motion, you take it to the point to where it’s slightly uncomfortable, and you hold it there for about 20 to 30 seconds. That’s what we’re familiar with.
Sheena Gregg: Sure. Sure, so kind of like a cool-down from a workout, and then they do a little stretching session or whatnot.
John Jackson: Absolutely. Absolutely. Static means still, so you’re not bouncing. You’re not moving. You just hold it at that point of slight discomfort for a certain amount of time. You want to try to isolate the muscle or the joint. The disadvantage of doing that type of stretch primarily is that the place where you feel that stretch on that muscle is the only part of that muscle that is being lengthened, for the most part, whereas in a dynamic stretch when you’re carrying it throughout its full range of motion, you’re probably getting more of a full muscle stretch.
Sheena Gregg: Sure.
John Jackson: What I would say is one is not necessarily better than the other. I would recommend probably dynamic stretching prior to a workout. Static stretching is better after you’re good and warmed up. So, if you’re going to do one before, one after, or just choose one, dynamic stretching would probably be better before and then static stretching is better for after. I will say this. If you’re about to strength train, static stretching prior to strength training is bad.
Sheena Gregg: Really? Okay.
John Jackson: Not in a way that it would hurt you, but it decreases your overall strength if you do static stretches prior to it.
Sheena Gregg: So just not as helpful.
John Jackson: Right. Exactly.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. That’s good to know. Okay.
John Jackson: Yeah. There you have it.
Sheena Gregg: Well now I feel enlightened, and I feel like I’ve experienced both situations then in the different types of workout classes that I’ve been in. Now I’m like, “Oh, I know exactly what kind of stretching this is,” so that’s good.
John Jackson: Right, yeah, and I tell you what, dynamic stretches are a great way … If you can find a dynamic stretching routine that’s about 15 to 20 minutes, when put together properly, and that’s one of the things that having a fitness professional help you with is great, but if you can get one that is already put together and in the proper order, if you can do that for about 15 to 20 minutes, you go into your workout with a good sweat going on, there’s not a better feeling in the world because you’re ready to workout. You’re ready to lift weights. You’re ready to do whatever cardio you’re going to do. There you have it.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. I’m feeling re-inspired with everything. I’m like, “Okay, I should probably start exercising again.”
John Jackson: All right. All right, real quickly, can I ask you … ?
Sheena Gregg: Of course.
John Jackson: Can we go back to the nutrition question before?
Sheena Gregg: Yes. We totally can.
John Jackson: Okay. Activated charcoal. I’ve seen some advertisements for these types of detox things.
Sheena Gregg: Oh, yes. Yes. So, with activated charcoal, as you can imagine charcoal is black. You might have seen some activated charcoal foods or beverages that are out there. Essentially, the way the charcoal is activated is it goes through a special heating and chemical process. A lot of clinicians that work in substance abuse programs will sometimes give activated charcoal to get certain toxins out of someone when they’ve had an overdose or whatever else. So people have been trying to use that concept to go on a detox diet themselves.
This can actually be really harmful to the body, or not helpful, because basically when you’re taking in that activated charcoal, the activated charcoal basically acts as a magnet or a sponge to get the stuff out of you, and that’s really only going to be in your stomach. It’s not going to get toxins that have built up in your body. It’s just going to get toxins that are in your stomach at the time, but it’s not only going to absorb toxins. It’s going to absorb vitamins, minerals, other types of nutrients, so it’s almost like that activated charcoal can’t be like, “Oh, this is a toxin. I need to grab it. Oh, that’s a vitamin or a mineral. I’ll leave it.” It’s just going to absorb everything, so that’s not so great.
I tell folks, “If you’re trying to think of a detox, you’ve actually got a really great system in place called your liver and your kidneys. It’s really I mean probably one of the best things on the market,” and so that’s what I would say about that. So, with the activated charcoal, it’s not going to be overly dangerous. It’s just honestly not going to be helpful, and if anything else, it might affect the absorption of the good stuff you’re trying to keep in your body.
John Jackson: Nice. So when we say supervised, we’re going to do a detox supervised by a nutrition professional. You wouldn’t even supervise one. You say, “DOn’t do it at all, most circumstances.”
Sheena Gregg: Right, yeah. Yeah, most circumstances. There’s going to be other circumstances where medically somebody might need whatever kind of situation, but yeah, for the most part, your kidneys and liver, I mean they’re pretty banging. They’re pretty amazing.
John Jackson: They’re there for a reason.
Sheena Gregg: Yes, but it’s time for another break.
John Jackson: We’re flying.
Sheena Gregg: We’re rolling through this stuff. Okay, you guys. Stick with us. We got some more controversial fitness and nutrition topics. You are listening to Fit2BTide with Sheena and John on 90.7, The Capstone. …
Welcome back. You are listening to Fit2BTide with Sheena and John on 90.7, The Capstone, this Sunday afternoon. If you are just now joining us, this is a great time to join us because we are talking about some pretty hot, controversial nutrition and fitness topics, and so of course, John, I want to throw it back to you with another fitness question. This one I would say I’m actually personally interested in because this will probably be the first time I’m saying it on air … I’m pregnant, and I have heard, as I’ve been researching proper fitness for myself as a pregnant woman, having to be really careful with certain types of movements that would not be disruptive to my abdominal area, and a lot of that has to do with some twisting movements and things of that nature. When you think about the topic of spinal flexion and rotation versus core stability, talk to me about that.
John Jackson: First off, congratulations, for the first time to be able to say it publicly.
Sheena Gregg: Thank you. Appreciate it.
John Jackson: I’m so happy for you. I can’t believe there’s going to be a little She-dog running around here.
Sheena Gregg: I know. Me neither. We’ll see what happens.
John Jackson: Yeah, but I’m so excited for you and Terry both. That was great.
Sheena Gregg: Thank you. Thank you.
John Jackson: Anyway, back to your question. Obviously, being pregnant is a specific condition.
Sheena Gregg: Sure.
John Jackson: There are certain things that go along with that, but going back to … and we could get into that. That’s a totally off-the-wall topic, but there are specific things with that. One thing that you see a lot of people doing now, and where the controversy is in this, you see people doing a lot of rotational-type exercises, whether it’s whatever side-to-side twisting type abdominal movement, regardless of what type of position you’re in to start with, if you’re twisting while you’re crunching your abs or flexing your abs, I’m not going to say it’s going to hurt you, but your abdominal muscles, your core muscles, your low back, your abdominal muscles, they’re designed to hold your spine in place. They’re not designed to twist your spine.
I mean obviously certain muscles help you twist your body, but ideally, the muscles that you’re working when you’re doing an ab workout help stabilize the spine and keep it as still as possible, which helps prevent injury. So ideally, any type of abdominal movement … I always tell people, “Everybody has a six-pack. It’s just what it’s hidden underneath.”
Sheena Gregg: Sure.
John Jackson: Now, the level of detail that you have in your six-pack or eight-pack or whatever, yeah, you want to have good, strong abs. You want to balance it out with good, strong lower back muscles as well, but ideally, you would definitely want to minimize any type of twisting movement. Like I said, over the long term, it’s probably potentially dangerous, especially when you’re using resistance … I see people doing it, you know, heavy weights and twisting.
Sheena Gregg: Sure.
John Jackson: That’s scary, but ideally, you want to keep that plane straight up and down when you’re doing crunches and keep that twisting to a minimum.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. So if someone was doing something like bicycle crunches or whatever else, and there is that twisting action, what would be something that I guess could essentially be safer while still targeting those obliques, those side areas?
John Jackson: It’s difficult to explain exactly how to do it, but anything where you’re side-lying.
Sheena Gregg: Sure. Okay.
John Jackson: Basically, crunching as straight up as you can, but if you can target your obliques as much as you could possibly target them, that’s the way to go. One thing I see people doing a lot is basically just the old side bends where a heavy dumbbell’s in each hand, and they go side to side with them. When you’re doing that, and I try to tell as many people as I can this, essentially when you’re using a heavy weight and you’re lifting a heavy weight, you’re causing your muscles to potentially grow, and that is the last thing anybody would probably want to do with that area because it’s making your waist thicker, so from a-
Sheena Gregg: I had never thought about it like that.
John Jackson: Yeah, so from strictly an aesthetic perspective, it’s not going to help you. Question number one, I always tell people, “If you’re going to do an exercise, what is the purpose of doing it?” If you’re trying to do something twisting with your abdominals, there’s only so much you can get from it, and the risk versus reward is pretty high, so I would stay away from those type of things.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. Man, I’m learning so much this afternoon.
John Jackson: Hey, I’m glad I could help you out.
Sheena Gregg: You talk about learning stuff from me, but yeah, no, this is great. Okay, so got another question. Low reps versus high reps. I see that over the years when I’m even working in a fitness facility myself in high school, I would hear people talk about even super sets and all this kind of stuff. So low reps versus high reps. Shoot it to me.
John Jackson: Well, what I would say is this. Both are good, depending on what you’re trying to accomplish and in an overall workout routine when you’re thinking long-term over the course of your life or over the course of years. Working in rep schemes where you’re using low reps and high reps or different combinations of that is fine. How you define low reps and how you define high reps is basically one thing you need to look at first.
Generally we consider low reps six reps or less, all right? Now, we’re not talking six reps or less with a super light weight. We’re talking about fatigue at six reps, so that being said, to use a weight that will fatigue you at six reps is potentially putting you at risk for injury, but there’s nothing … I mean in a controlled situation, that’s okay. I mean you got that risk-reward thing.
Sheena Gregg: Sure.
John Jackson: You’re wanting to grow muscles. You’re wanting to increase your power with six reps or less. That’s the way you want to go. If you want to increase your strength, we’re talking about the eight to 15 rep range. That’s going to help increase your strength more than anything else, and again, we’re talking fatigue at the end of a set. You can’t do any more than 15 reps. That’s going to get what most people probably would want in that middle range. Now, when we define high reps, a lot of people you see just cranking out rep after rep after rep. Nothing wrong with that, but what I like to consider is that point of diminishing returns. If you can get past 20 with a weight, what you’re working is muscular endurance, from 15 to 20 reps. That’s great for you, but you can only get so many benefits past that point, so 20’s the magic number if you want to say high reps.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. No, that’s good to know. I mean especially too if I’m killing it at whatever rep number, and I’m not being fatigued, probably time to move up in weight.
John Jackson: Increase the weight. Absolutely.
Sheena Gregg: Yeah. Okay. Good to know.
John Jackson: All right. Back to you. After we do this, we’re going to go on a quick speed round, but I want to get your take real quickly also on intermittent fasting. [crosstalk 00:35:42]
Sheena Gregg: Yes. Oh, gosh. There’s a lot of controversy out there. I would say that there are certainly some folks out there that are team yay and team no with it, and I think part, and essentially … So, just to clarify what intermittent fasting is, is that you are fasting for different periods of time and interspersing that with just normal eating. I think three of the most popular styles … There’s one where maybe people choose one or two days a week where they’re limiting their calories to maybe 500 calories a day, and then the other days of the week they’re going to their quote, unquote, “normal eating.”
Then there’s other types of intermittent fasting where maybe throughout the day they are only allowing themselves to eat for eight hours of the day, and then the other 16 hours of the day they’re fasting. Then there’s another type of intermittent fasting where people are choosing a handful of days a week where there literally is no food being consumed at all, so it’s a 24-hour fast, and then they return to normal eating the next day and just teeter-totter back and forth between the two.
Some people like it because on the days that they can eat, for the most part there’s no restriction to what it is. If it can go in your mouth, it’s free game, but on your fasting days, you just don’t eat and you have calorie-containing beverages like water and tea and coffee. I think part of what has made it popular, again, is because when people eat, they can eat whatever they want to.
There was a study done in 2011 where it actually compared intermittent fasting with someone just going on a low-calorie diet overall, and they were pretty comparable in terms of the weight loss and fat mass. What was seen with the intermittent fasting though is that the intermittent fasting actually retained more lean body mass, so that was something that was a pro, but again, that’s just one study, but you know how people like to cling to one thing if they’re trying to make a point.
John Jackson: Yes, absolutely.
Sheena Gregg: I would say, as a dietician, that on the day’s you’re fasting, you’re going to become really irritable. You’re going to miss out on a lot of nutrition, so the day that you’re rebounding back to normal eating, you’re not going to eat normal, sensible, healthy portions. You’re going to go big or go home because that day you were fasting you were probably fantasizing about that ice cream or burger, and you’re going to take care of business the next day, and that does not really offer a healthy way to eat.
So, this isn’t going to be great for people who have chronic conditions like diabetes, certainly someone who has a history of an eating disorder. That’s not going to be great too. I’m not going to say that I would just tell someone to never, ever consider it. It’s just not something that I would normally recommend to someone.
John Jackson: Okay, at all?
Sheena Gregg: Yeah.
John Jackson: Stay away from it.
Sheena Gregg: Yes.
John Jackson: Again, like you always say, I’ve heard you say it a million times, moderation.
Sheena Gregg: Yeah. I’m just not a fan of really extreme styles of anything, so yeah.
John Jackson: Okay. We’re going to take one last quick break, and then we’re going to come back and do a little quick speed round, and then we’re going to go to Sheena Talks About a Food.
Sheena Gregg: I am down with that. Okay, so let’s take this break, you guys. You are listening to Fit2BTide with Sheena and John on 90.7, The Capstone. …
John Jackson: Welcome back to Fit2BTide with Sheena and John on 90.7, The Capstone. We’re going to wrap things up with a little speed round here of controversial topics. Everything has flown by this afternoon, but we have to save time for my favorite topic, Sheena Talks About a Food.
Real quickly, and we’re not going to answer these questions thoroughly for you. Please understand that going into this. We’re going to ask a couple questions real quickly and give our quick opinion on it. If you want more, email us.
Sheena Gregg: Yes. Yes.
John Jackson: Our email address is on the station’s website.
Sheena Gregg: That’s correct.
John Jackson: Send us an email, and we’ll be glad to follow up in more detail if you have questions about it.
Sheena Gregg: Yes, okay. I got a question for you.
John Jackson: Okay. Bring it.
Sheena Gregg: Interval training versus steady-state cardio.
John Jackson: Okay. Both have advantages. There are advantages to each. Most of the time when people do cardio, they’re doing it to lose weight, but you also get those heart benefits as well. Again, both are good. You’d want to do both of them. Probably the best benefit, the best bang for your buck, interval training and interval training where you’re going really, really hard for a certain period of time and then recovering.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. Very nice. Okay.
John Jackson: Thank you.
Sheena Gregg: I got a follow-up. Okay, so how about advanced monitoring techniques versus doing a wellness questionnaire?
John Jackson: Okay. A lot of people don’t see that necessarily would think about this, but a personal trainer would look at this for you. Advanced monitoring techniques, we’re talking about wearables, things that you see people … whether it’s just that good, old-fashioned heart rate monitor or the more fancy things that are out there now.
What we know is the technology is so good now that if you have something that you can afford to wear and it makes you aware of what you’re doing, go for it, because again, it’s going to make you aware of it. A wellness questionnaire could be something as simple as this. It’s not actually a questionnaire necessarily, but it could be like where you create your own scale, a one to 10 scale, six to 20 scale. Comparable-type things of there are those scales that are out there, and basically when you create that scale, you’re doing cardio or you’re working out, you’re lifting. You would want to say you’re at a six or seven at least on a one to 10 scale, at least a 13 or 14 on a six to 20 scale. Your heart rate is going to correspond with that.
Sheena Gregg: Nice.
John Jackson: Research shows it.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. Love it, love it, love it.
John Jackson: Okay. Questions for you. Something I’ve seen recently. Caffeine-infused foods.
Sheena Gregg: Yes. So bottom line, people aren’t necessarily wanting to get their caffeine from coffee or sodas, so the food industry is picking up on that. People want a pick-me-up, so when you think about caffeine, it can be really great when you haven’t had a good night’s sleep. It actually helps improve your brain’s short-term memory by affecting your brain’s pre-frontal cortex.
So, caffeine can be really great, but in moderate amounts. Moderate could be anywhere between 200 to 300 milligrams, depending on the person. If you go too high in your caffeine, you’re going to experience irritability, low blood sugar, nausea, diarrhea. So that’s where caffeine’s not going to be so great. Another thing too is it typically takes the average person to get about … It takes about three to four hours for caffeine to be eliminated from your system, so if you have trouble going to sleep at night you probably don’t want that caffeinated chocolate bar or granola bar at 6:00 at night if you have a distinct bedtime you are trying to hit.
John Jackson: Got you. Great. You spent a lot of time talking about the gut today, so we’re going to try to move away from that. There is a great increase in popularity of plant proteins now. Your take on that.
Sheena Gregg: Yes. That is correct. Definitely a big fan of people that may be going vegetarian or vegan. The thing you want to do if you are going to go with more plant-based proteins is you want to make sure that you’re eating as many of the different types of plant-based proteins that are possible. You don’t want to choose to go plant-based in your eating and be a really picky eater because that’s going to limit you, but really, the research is indicating that we don’t need as much protein as a standard American diet promotes. You can completely get all that you need from plant-based proteins. I think we just have been convinced it’s got to be a big, old hot steak in front of us, so yes.
John Jackson: Great answer. Very quick, concise, to-the-point.
Sheena Gregg: Thank you.
John Jackson: Now, on to my favorite thing. We’re going to change speeds. We’re going to slow it down just a little bit here. Sheena Talks About a Food. I am here by myself. You are going to describe a food for me-
Sheena Gregg: I am.
John Jackson: We’ll see if I can guess it, and then after that, I know you probably have a recipe to go with this food?
Sheena Gregg: I do, yes.
John Jackson: Okay. All right. Let’s see if I can guess.
Sheena Gregg: Okay, so fun fact. This food originated as far back as 6,000 BC. There are more than 2,000 varieties of this food available worldwide. The people of Greece are the largest consumer of this food. The average person in Greece consumes about 60 pounds of this food every year. Pizza Hut is the largest purchaser of this food to use in their products. It uses approximately 300 million pounds of this food annually. The production of this food around the globe is more than the combined worldwide production of coffee, tobacco, tea and cocoa beans. This food’s an excellent source of protein, calcium, and phosphorus, and this food has been shown in studies to help prevent tooth decay by promoting the flow of saliva and also protects tooth enamel and has an antibacterial effect.
John Jackson: For the record, we do not talk about these ahead of time, and this may be the first one that I’ve ever gotten right, and I hope I’m not wrong. Is it cheese?
Sheena Gregg: Yes.
John Jackson: Yes, finally, after all this time.
Sheena Gregg: Yay. Oh, yay. Okay. It is cheese. What tipped you off?
John Jackson: There were several things, but you laid out a few facts that I didn’t know. The saliva thing? Didn’t know. There were a couple other things that you threw out there that might would have thrown me for a little bit of a loop, but I was solid on most of that.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. Very good. Well, our recipe is a one pan broccoli bacon mac and cheese. We can take the broccoli out for our folks if you want to. It’s actually from-
John Jackson: But hey, let’s go healthy. Let’s go healthy.
Sheena Gregg: Okay. You’re asking for healthy. This is from the Cooking Light website. Not only does it have your traditional cheese and bacon and all that stuff, it’s also got some butternut squash that is hidden in there to add some creaminess where you’re not having to use as much cheese, so yeah.
John Jackson: Interesting. How can our listeners get this recipe?
Sheena Gregg: Yes, so we’ll actually be able to tweet it out, have it available on the website, get it out to you guys, so it’s going to be fantastic, but-
John Jackson: Great.
Sheena Gregg: Man, such a great show.
John Jackson: Too fast. I enjoyed it. Great day today.
Sheena Gregg: Yes. I know. We got to do another thing like this.
John Jackson: Yeah, absolutely.
Sheena Gregg: You guys, enjoy the rest of your Sunday, and have a fabulous week. You have been listening to Fit2BTide with Sheena and John on 90.7, The Capstone.