Deciphering Antioxidant Juices

It seems like everyone out there has another antioxidant or miracle juice that will solve all your problems- and all are willing to tell you why theirs is the best. It can be very confusing, trying to research all these different product and establish which ones are good for you, and which ones are overpriced and heavily marketed fruit juices. There are a few key things to look at when you are investigating a product.

Firstly, what is an antioxidant? An antioxidant is a molecule capable of inhibiting the oxidation of other molecules. What is oxidation? Oxidation is a chemical reaction that transfers electrons from a substance to an oxidizing agent. Oxidation reactions can produce free radicals- these radicals can start chain reactions that damage cells. Antioxidants terminate these chain reactions by removing free radical intermediates, and inhibit other oxidation reactions. Examples of antioxidants include vitamins C, E, and A, and other substances including beta-carotene, lycopene, glutathione, Lutein, Selenium, Resveratrol. Antioxidants have been linked to reduced risks of cancer, cardiovascular disease, gum disease, etc. In summary, antioxidants are good for our health.

How is an antioxidant measured? Dr Cao of the National Institute of Aging developed a test called The ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) Assay in 1992 to measure the level of antioxidant protection of a product as well as the duration of the protection. 
ORAC measures the degree, which a product inhibits the action of oxidative agents and the length of time this inhibitor occurs. The ORAC Assay integrates the strength and duration of antioxidant protection for a product into a single numerical value (called the ORAC score) and has been shown to highly correlate with the level and the time of protection in cells, body tissues and blood levels. In others words, there is a near perfect correlation between the ORAC value and the antioxidant and immune system protection in the body. This is important because oxidative stress has been demonstrated to accelerate the aging process in both cells and blood vessels. Oxidative stress also increases the risk of certain types of cancer, coronary heart disease and many other health maladies.

You get antioxidants in the food that you eat- primarily your fruits and vegetables, but given the busyness of modern life it is very hard to get enough antioxidants on a daily basis- not to mention degrading food quality. This is one of the reasons antioxidant juices have come about, as a convenient way to get the antioxidants your body needs. Some key things to look at in an antioxidant juice:

1)      Superfruit- Every juice WILL have a superfruit in it- and will be heavily marketed on that fact. The 3 main ones are: Acai Berry, Goji Berry (also known as the wolfberry), and the Mangosteen Fruit. Here is a list of some of the antioxidant values of the top scoring fruits.

Wolfberry, Ningxia, dried 30,300†    
Wolfberry, Chinese 20,200  Importance of “Ningxia”   
Mangosteen 20,000?  No independent proof   
Acai 18,400    
Raspberry, Black 16,400    
Pomegranate 10,500†    
Prune 5,700†    
Blackberry 5,100†    
Boysenberry 3,500†    
Blueberry 3,200†    
Plum 2,800†    
Raspberry, Red 2,700†


  *ORAC SCORE*    

Although the fruit itself may score high- when it is processed into a product it may lose some of its antioxidant value. Also, the drink should include whole parts of the fruit- a puree – not just extracted fruit juices.

2)      Filler Juices – Every juice will have the superfruit- but what else is in the drink? Some warning signs of an inferior product are sugary, high glycemic index low antioxidant value filler ‘junk’ juices like apple, pear, and grape. These contain very little antioxidants themselves, and are cheaper to include in the beverage. Not only do they have a lower antioxidant value- they are high glycemic index- meaning they will have more of an effect on your blood sugar levels- and are probably not diabetic safe either. You should be looking for juices that are lower glycemic index, high antioxidant value that contribute to the synergy of the juice- taken from the list above, some good ones to look for are raspberry (black or red), blueberry, pomegranate, boysenberry, plum, etc.

3)      Sweetener- Look for low glycemic index sweeteners, such as Organic Blue Agave, stevia, etc- avoid all artificial sweeteners such as aspartame, sucralose, etc. And of course, avoid sucrose- sugar increases inflammation in the body amongst other things, and should not be a predominant sweetener.

Keep in mind all of the things above when looking at a product- you will be surprised at how many products you come across that do not meet all the criteria- put your antioxidant juice to the test and see if it meets the criteria! As per usual, contact me with any questions you may have, I’m happy to help you decipher antioxidants further.

Adam Green

Great Ideas To Utilize Protein Powder


Bio-X is one of my favourite protein powders. I worked for them when this product was developed and got to provide my feedback in the development of the taste. The quality and taste is top notch, try it! -Cabel

If you’re someone who isn’t so crazy about the thought of downing another protein shake, you’re definitely going to want to consider some of the other things that you can do with protein powder.

You really must be making sure that you reach your daily protein requirements so by using creative ways to get more protein in through protein powder you can definitely accomplish this.

Remember that protein powder doesn’t always shave to be made into a shake or smoothie.  There are numerous other methods that you can take this in and help work towards your muscle building goals.

Let’s take a look to get you started.

Stir Protein Powder Into Oatmeal

Perhaps one of the fastest ways to boost your protein intake without having a shake is to stir a scoop of your favorite flavor into your morning bowl of oatmeal.  If you like, add a tablespoon of peanut butter once it’s all been stirred in and you’ll have a very complete meal in mere seconds.

Just make sure that the oatmeal has been fully cooked before stirring in the protein powder as this does tend to make it mix much easier.

Prepare Protein Powder Balls

Second, another quick and simple way to utilize protein powder is to make yourself some protein balls.  This is an incredibly easy snack that you can carry around with you wherever you go.  Simply mix together some honey, dry oats, peanut butter, and then your protein powder until a sticky mixture is formed.

Shape those into balls and then place on some wax paper in the fridge until hardened.  These are extremely calorie dense and will be perfect for those who are on a muscle building diet.

Add Protein Powder To Coffee

Another quick and easy way to get more protein powder into your day is to add some vanilla powder into your morning cup of coffee.  Rather than using plain creamer which is very high in fat, stir in the protein powder for added flavor and nutrients.

You may want to shake the protein powder up with some water first and then pour this into half a cup of coffee as some protein powders don’t mix as well with hot liquid as others do.

Prepare Protein Bars Finally, the last thing you can do to help boost your protein powder intake for the day is to cook up some protein bars.  There are numerous recipes that you can find for these all which include natural ingredients that will be incredibly healthy for you.

With such a wide variety of different protein powder flavors available as well you can get extremely creative with the type of protein bar you choose to make.

So keep these ideas in mind for using protein powders.  Obviously the fastest and easiest method is to just mix with water and drink but for those who would like to try something different, these tend to fit the bill perfectly.

In support of all proceeds from purchases made through our online store will be donated to the climb. Thank you for your support.

B12 For Better Health

Another great article from One-to-1 senior trainer Josh Neufeld.

Proper vitamin intake is essential to achieving your fitness goals, however it has become all too common for individuals to lack a certain unique vitamin known as vitamin B12. Vitamin B12 is unique  in that it is the only vitamin obtained from animals and animal sources, as well as it acts as a CRUCIAL part of your metabolic processes in your body. Prolonged deficiency of such a vitamin can lead to a disorder known as megaloblastic anemia, which can lead to a stoppage of DNA synthesis in red blood cells. What does all that mean? Essentially, we have put a stop to the reproduction of red blood cells (used commonly as the oxygen/energy distributors) throughout our body. This can become an issue because red blood cells contain haemoglobin, which works directly with the lungs to take air that we have breathed in and transport that oxygen to all our muscles (especially during exercise!).

Red blood cells have an average lifetime of 100-120 days before they need to be regenerated, and over time with a lack of vitamin B12, and in turn a lower red blood cell count, there are multiple signs and symptoms our body can fall victim too. The first and most prominent symptom is the feeling of fatigue, and as most individuals know this is the number one cause for a lack of exercise. As well as effecting energy levels, an individuals nervous system can also fall victim as well as an array of other systemic (whole-body) symptoms. Weakness, memory loss, as well as a cognitive decrease in your strive to exercise has been linked to this type of anemia and it is becoming all the more important to supplement or find ways to obtain this very important vitamin.

Because vitamin B12 is found predominantly in animal sources, vegans and vegetarians can fall victim to this disorder, so in this case a dietary supplement may be necessary to regulate levels. A medical condition may also be cause for a lack of vitamin B12 present in the body, and although ones dietary intake may be sufficient when the vitamin enters the stomach specific antibodies may be present that can actually destroy and make these vitamins useless. A decrease in the bodies natural HCL (hydrochloric acid) can also lead to deficiencies, and is more commonly related to aging individuals whose stomach acidity is neutralized by a high ingestion of antacids. The last of the more common disorders related to vitamin B12 uptake is due to chronic alcoholism, where in the lining of the stomach is also compromised and leads to alterations in the absorption pattern of B12.

Treatment for vitamin B12 disorders is always going to be dependant on the individual, and handled on a personal basis. Of course, the regular intake of vitamin B12, as well as leading a healthy balanced lifestyle is always your best bet. And if symptoms persist, seeking help from a professional is always the safest bet.

Josh Neufeld's Vacation Super Guide

Josh Neufeld’s Vacation Super Guide

So you’re headed away on vacation, but with only one problem: You just fit yourself into those skinny jeans, or you fit that awesome jacket you had in high school, and you don’t want to come back from a relaxing vacation only to realise you are back at square-one! No problem, just make sure you stay health conscious on your next trip and you may surprise yourself when you step on the scale when you get back home. ‘But how do I do that?’ – you might ask. Follow these 10 great steps (or at least some of them!) and you won’t have to deal with an angry trainer upon your arrival home!

  1. Bring Workout Gear – chances are you are going to find yourself with some down time and are going to wish you had some workout clothes so that you could go for a nice run. So don’t leave yourself any excuses and bring your gear!
  2. Pack Some Snacks – you know the effect that eating 6 (or more) regular meals has on regulating blood sugars and metabolism, so don’t neglect this simple rule while you are away. Consider bringing some healthy snacks with you (or finding some at your destination). Easy items include: nuts, seeds, vegetables, fruit or maybe even a scoop of protein powder.
  3. Get to The Beach! – running, walking, jumping, or any form of movement done on sand has actually been proven to be a low-impact alternative for people with knee and hip issues.
  4. Take a Lesson – why not try surfing? Snowboarding? ANYTHING! These fun activities also count as great forms of exercise, where you can have fun at the same time.
  5. Go Fishing – not only is lounging around in the sun a great source for Vitamin-D, but you may also come home with a healthy supper loaded with your essential fatty acids.
  6. Use Your Body(weight) – simply bodyweight exercises such as pushups, squats, dips, and lunges are all great exercises that require little to no equipment and when performed daily for 20 minutes will help maintain lean muscle mass.
  7. VITAMINS! – all too often people take off to an oasis and neglect everything they have been doing for the last 6 months to get ready for their trip! Be sure to pack your multivitamins and your omegas (or whatever else you have been taking). It takes only seconds each day to get these crucial supplements in, and your body will thank you for it.
  8. Family Affair – don’t think you’re alone in trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle while on vacation. Why not plan to have 30 minutes each morning where as a family (or a couple) you can take a run together? Or even challenge each other to some pushups and wall-sits? This is a fun way for your family to connect and stay fit.
  9. The Buffet – don’t take the “all you can eat” sign as a challenge. Be sensible in your everyday meals and try not to overload your body with foods it’s not used to.
  10. HAVE FUN! – a vacation is a time to step away from life’s daily stresses, and gives us an opportunity to reduce our stress levels and see life a little more clear. So don’t be afraid to indulge a bit, and rest that body. After all, you’ve earned it!

What types of fats should you be eating?

Red Deer Personal Trainer – One-to-1 Senior trainer Josh Neufeld

Most individuals will claim that weight loss is achieved through eating “low-fat” diets. The question is not necessarily how much fat you are ingesting on a daily basis, but rather what types of fats you are regularly taking in. It is true that portion control is essential for being able to manage and control weight loss; however, what is not always taken into account is the quality of those calories as opposed to the quantity of the calories can make a huge difference on your ability to achieve your weight loss goals. Fats act as a long-term energy source for our body to thrive off of, and because they take longer to digest they can help amp up your metabolism when ingested during regular meals. Nutritional fat is also essential to brain, cell, heart, nerve, eye, lung, digestion, organ function, as well as immunity systems in your body.

Overall, your daily intake should consist of about 20 to 30% fats (dependant of course on your own body type as well as trainer/dietician recommendations), but based on an average 1800 calorie diet, this would mean about 360 to 450 calories worth of fat. Or rather, approximately 40 to 50 grams of fat on a daily basis, adding an additional 2.5 grams for each additional 100 calories taken in throughout the course of the day. Broken down even further, less than 10 of these grams (ideally, none) should come in the form of either saturated fats or trans-fats (as these are the types of fats that are solid at room temperature and relay directly to most cardiovascular diseases). Focus the majority of your daily intake of fats on unsaturated as well as omega 3-6-9 fats.

Unsaturated fats actually work to reverse the effects of bad fats. The poor effects of bad fats (saturated and trans-fatty acids) such as increases in blood pressure and other cardiovascular diseases, can actually be reversed by the intake of higher-quality fats such as those found in nuts, game meat, avocados and olive oil. These types of healthy fats actually work to reduce an individual’s cholesterol as well as LDL (low density lipoprotein; a common cause of atherosclerosis, aka blood clotting) levels.

Omega 3-6-9 fats work in the blood to reduce blood triglyceride (fat) levels, as well as increase circulation by working as a natural blood thinner. It has also been noted that the intake of such omega fats has a direct correlation to a decrease risk in the probability of strokes, as well as they have been linked to an increase in the immunity levels of those individuals who take in consistent levels of these types of fats.

So what do you look for on a nutrition label? Be sure to note the total amount of “grams of fat” per serving. Take this number (let’s assume it is 5 grams) and subtract from that the total amount of saturated/trans-fats (let’s assume this number is 1 gram). From this you will know now many good quality grams of fat you have absorbed (as 5 – 1 = 4 grams of unsaturated or omega fats).

3 Simple Ways to Kick-start your Fitness Goals in 2011

A guest post by One-to-1 Fitness senior trainer Adam Green.                                             

Here are a few simple ways to kick-start your progress leading into the New Year!

1)Set Goals… and track them! Start recording specific target items in a day timer or journal- how many meals you have in a day, when you exercise, etc. This is the simplest way to keep you accountable to the most important person: yourself. Set SMART Goals- Specific (quantifiable) Measurable (be detailed!), Attainable (set goals within your reach), Realistic (100lbs a month is not realistic!), and Time Sensitive (have goal dates- these keep you on track). By setting SMART goals, you are setting yourself up for a successful year to begin with

2)Start your water consumption when you wake up! Water is an essential part of life and being healthy, and we often neglect our water consumption. Form the habit of starting your day with two large glasses of cold water- you are kick-starting your metabolism and beginning to rehydrate your body from an evening of sleep (and not drinking water!) Some other ways to increase your water consumption is by flavouring your water with Young Living therapeutic grade essential oils- there are a variety of flavours all with their own set of benefits Essential oils have a special lipid-soluble makeup, which gives them a remarkable ability to penetrate cell membranes, deliver oxygen, break-up undigested food, and oppose toxins.

LEMON: Stimulates the immune system (increases white blood cells), improves memory, induces relaxation, reduces depression. Rich in limonene#. 

PEPPERMINT: Anti inflammatory, digestive aid, gallbladder stimulant. Anti-tumoral, curbs appetite, pain reliever. (1 drop of Peppermint = 24 cups peppermint tea…best to use toothpick technique to adjust strength of flavor)

ORANGE: Boosts immunity, induces relaxation, reduces depression. Rich in limonene CITRUS FRESH BLEND (Orange, Tangerine, Lemon, Mandarin, Grapefruit, Spearmint): Stimulates right brain to amplify creativity and well being. Reduce anxiety.     (Purifies the air when diffused)  Rich in limonene# (anti-tumoral)

GRAPEFRUIT:  Refreshing and uplifting to the mood. Boosts immunity, induce relaxation, reduce depression. May be useful for weight loss, depression, anxiety, cellulite, Alzheimer’s, fluid retention, anxiety, liver disorders.  Rich in limonene#

SPEARMINT: Increases metabolism, anti inflammatory, digestive aid, gallbladder stimulant. Brings about a feeling of balance and a lasting sense of well being.

THIEVES: Boost immune system, prevent colds, flu, ease sore throat.

# LIMONENE: extensively studied for ability to combat tumor growth in over 50 clinical studies

TOOTHPICK technique: For stronger oils, dip toothpick into bottle and stir into water. Repeat with clean toothpick until desired flavor is achieved (Peppermint, Spearmint, Thieves)

These contain no artificial sweeteners, and work out to be a lower cost per serving size compared to using artificially sweetened flavouring products to enhance flavour of your water.

3)Habits, habits, habits! Set your New Year’s resolution- to begin developing and establishing healthy habits in your daily routine. Making weight training, cardio, meal planning, daily physical activity etc a part of your daily routine will make you successful in your goals for increased health and wellness. Some of my daily habits that I find have made a huge difference in how I feel are: Drinking 1+ litre of water first thing in the morning ( I use peppermint in my morning water as added stimulant to get my metabolism fired up, and to wake up!), maximum pushups, and consuming a hearty breakfast (usually cottage cheese, oatmeal, fruit, and cinnamon) within 30 minutes of waking. All in all, these things combined do not take up 15 minutes of my time – but make a huge difference in how I feel throughout the day and even in my own personal fitness routine. Start your New Year by developing your own set of health habits.

Cabel's Opinion: Worst Weight Loss Programs – LA Weight Loss

In case you’re just joining us…

PLEASE READ FIRST: Ok let me start by saying this article is based on my opinion and over 19 years experience in the fitness industry. In my time in this industry I have managed health clubs, I’ve worked for supplement companies, I’ve assisted and contributed to product design, I am a registered massage therapist and a holistic lifestyle coach. To date I’ve personally assisted more than 3000 local individuals in reaching their fitness goals, overcoming injuries and eliminating pain through improved muscle balance and posture. As an amateur physique athlete I’ve even gained and lost more than 1000lbs of bodyweight in 15 different experiences with specific, measured, calculated nutrition and exercise strategies.  I am very proud to say our training facility One-to-1 Fitness has built on this experience and to date has completed more than 60,000 training sessions in just three years of operation.

Recently on my Facebook account I acknowledged my disgust for one the latest weight loss crazes I’ve been hearing about, in this case the HCG diet. Over the years I’ve seen all kinds of gimmicks come and go. In this opinionated article series I’m going to put my credibility on the line and share with you what I think are some of the worst weight loss programs and why. You don’t have to agree with me, it’s ok if you don’t. You can likely easily find “research” that will discredit my belief and my opinion and that’s also ok. All I ask is that look at this with a reasonably open mind and decide for yourself if my opinions have some merit. All opinions and conclusions beyond this point are the result of real world, in the trenches experience with people just like you.

IMPORTANT NOTE: At the time of writing I am collecting the final measures from our most recent 6 week challenge. Using only exercise and nutrition I’ve seen 30+lbs lost, nearly 24” lost, over 10% bodyfat and 16lbs of actual bodyfat lost in just 6 weeks. Every single individual has preserved nearly all of their muscle mass (and in most cases gained more) ensuring their metabolic rate can only be higher than it was just 6 weeks ago.

LA Weight Loss – LA Weight Loss gets my next vote for the worst weight loss programs, placing it at seven on my list. LA Weight Loss is a really great business model; they have taken characteristics of other programs and combined them into a very highly profitable model. Even though I’m going to criticize LA Weight Loss it would be arrogant of me not to mention early that in spite of this criticism there are also positive aspects to the LA Weight Loss Program (which also applies to last weeks criticism of Herbal Magic and in the weeks that follow for the other programs lower on the list.)

These positive aspects include the ongoing accountability and support of having a coach, encouragement to eat frequently, regular portion sizes combined with the affirmation and recognition of achievement. So what is it that I don’t like about this program?

Well most recently I have to say their “Take Off Juice Diet” is absurd. It’s essentially a rip off of the old Hollywood fasting diet and it’s a garbage idea that preys on consumers and their need for instant (temporary and potentially metabolically damaging) gratification. There are better and more effective ways to detox, and you should understand that any rapid weight loss that occurs on any program in the first two weeks is primarily a change in intercellular volumization and hydration (or in laymen consumerism terms “water weight”.)

LA Weight Loss is very product driven, like most of these similar systems you must use their products while on the program, their very expensive products. They rely on metabolic stimulators (generally wrapped with herbal diuretics for those instant temporary results) and then convenience items like bars, shakes, etc. Now these food supplements tend to be more expensive versions of what’s readily available at Popeye’s or any health food store. You should know that even with a financial interest in the local Popeye’s I still don’t recommend these types of convenience products to my serious weight loss clients. They are still a poor substitute for real food and should only be used as a last resort to solving a difficult schedule; and always with the caveat that it will most certainly affect their progress.

As a whole combine the cost of the consulting and the expense of the ongoing use of their branded products and you’ll find LA Weight Loss to be a very expensive program for what is truly offered.

In my opinionated series LA Weight Loss has earned a spot lower on the list (the lower it is on my list the better I feel the program is) and finished 7th. It’s important to understand every program has it’s weaknesses (even personal training) and if this or another program has worked for you by no means do I wish to discourage you from using that program. The purpose of this series is just to provide perspective from someone who has interacted with thousands of people trying to lose weight and what I’ve seen and think of numerous other programs (as we are frequently asked.) 

Who do you think is next?