World Cup — What’s Your Goal?

The biggest sporting event in the world is almost over! The World Cup, hosted by Brazil, is considered (outside of the Olympics) to be the most significant international competition going today. The best soccer players from all over the world gather every four years to battle it out for bragging rights and the distinction of being the best soccer team on the planet.

Oddly enough, the World Cup makes me think of an article I read last year that examined diets of families from different parts of the world — countries like Mexico, China, Poland, the United States, and many more.

One of the most glaring differences is the type of food people in different countries eat. Some families eat a high amount of process foods, such as corn dogs and frozen pizza, while others eat more vegetables and grains. Another disparity, as you may guess, is the cost of food.  On average, a Texas-based family spends $242 per week on food, while a Mali-based family spends $30… and that’s for a family of 15!

The World Cup brings together different countries for one common goal. But it’s always intriguing to consider how different cultures and countries do things differently, especially when it comes to food. With the world’s obesity rate rising, it’s a good time to see the effect food choices have on weight and health, and, of course, what can be done to strive for better health. Now, that’s a goal we can all shoot for!

What’s your goal? 

Links: Time, BoredPanda



Dieting notoriously focus on what we eat. What about what we drink? While beverages provide refreshment, hydration, and at some times nourishment, hidden in many seemingly innocent beverages could be lots of calories that sabotage your success! 

Did you know that a 12-ounce can of soda averages 150 calories and a 12-ounce can of regular beer is about 160 calories? Recent study showed that an American diet has 21 percent of its calories comprised of beverages alone.

This explains why most diets encourage water; not only does water refresh and hydrate, it fills you up while keeping your calories down. There’s no restriction on how much water you can drink and it is one of the best (if not, the best) beverage to drink while exercising.  Another great beverage to consider when trying to lose weight, or just to be healthy in general, is green tea. Green tea is well documented for how its compounds, nutrients, and antioxidants benefit the body. However, it is best to use tea bags instead of buying it already made from your grocer’s fridge to keep calories and sugar low.

A lot of our “hidden calories” go into our beverages. Next time you go to take a sip, consider the drink. 

Links: Webmd, Newsmax


FDA Takes a Look at Appetite-Suppressing Device

The Maestro Rechargeable System is the latest attempt of the weight loss industry to keep up with the accelerated pace of technology. The device is made to stimulate the stomach nerves electronically in an effort to curb hunger pangs and appetite, and ultimately lose weight. 

Last week, the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) nine-person Gastroenterology and Urology Devices Panel voted that the device is safe to use as currently constituted with a vote of 8 to 1. Also with a vote of 6 to 2 (with one abstention), the panel voted that the benefits outweighed the risks. However, in what may have been the most significant vote, four members of the panel voted that the device would be effective on patients as opposed to five that said it wouldn't. Even though the panel’s vote isn't binding and doesn't need to be taken into consideration by the FDA, it typically is.

The Maestro Rechargeable Device is in the entry level of approval and development in the United States; however, it's currently under commercial use in Australia, the Hadi Hospital in Kuwait City, Kuwait, as well as clinical studies. In a study that spanned one year, results showed that patients using the device lost roughly 8.5 percent more of their weight as compared to patients not using the device.

Similar to other things we may put into our bodies, the Maestro device does have side effects, and it’s a matter of whether those effects negate whatever benefits that would come from the usage of the device that is most important. It’s another step in the direction of trying to find a resolution to the world’s increasing obesity problem, and that’s something that should be applauded. We’ll keep you updated on any new developments.

Links: CBSnews, WebMD


Study Shows Benefits to High-Protein Breakfast

A recent study may give another reason why breakfast can be your most important meal of the day, especially for women. 

Study conducted by the University of Missouri-Columbia resulted in the conclusion that a high-protein breakfast helps women maintain their glucose control. Why is this beneficial? Eating naturally increases glucose levels. However, too much of an increase can lead to poor glucose control, possibly resulting in diabetes or other health complications.

"Protein-rich breakfasts led to lower spikes in glucose and insulin after meals compared to the low-protein, high-carb breakfast," says Kevin Maki of Biofortis Clinical Research. Protein is found in many popular breakfast items such as eggs, oatmeal, and cottage cheese and if this study is any indication, we may be better off reaching for these items in the morning compared ones higher in carbs such as certain cereals or juices. 

Link: University of Missouri-Columbia 


Healthy Summer Snacks

Whether it’s a vacation, taking the family for a day in the park, or just hanging out with friends on the beach, summer is considered the ideal time to be out and about.  While we’re out, we may tend to grab a snack to carry us through the day. However, in the midst of enjoying ourselves we end up reaching for the water ice, ice cream, and other sweet (but unhealthy) snacks.

Take a look at these summer treats that go great with the season, and your diet!

Grilled Vegetables: If you haven’t yet, I’m sure you will visit a barbeque or a cookout soon, maybe even host one of your own. When you do, try throwing some vegetables on the grill such as zucchini, onions, eggplant, bell pepper, or any other low-calorie vegetable that you enjoy. It will add a lot of flavor to your meal, but won’t add nearly as many calories as other side dishes that will be close by.

Watermelon: Watermelon is an ideal fruit for the summer season. With a name like “water” melon, you would think it is made of a lot of water, and you would be right. A cup of diced watermelon contains 92 percent water, perfect for hydration during those hot summer days. Watermelon is also high in Vitamin A (helps with eye health) and Vitamin C (helps strengthen the immune system), add the delicious flavor and you have your prototypical summer treat.

Salads: Salads are relatively easy to make, and convenience is certainly what we are looking for when it comes to summer. However, try changing things up by adding some whole grain to your salad such as wheatberry or tabouli. Adding whole grain gives you the chance to taste something new as well as bring all the nutrients and benefits that comes with whole grains. If you’re looking for some healthy ways to add toppings to your salads, take a look at this.

Just because we find time to take a break during the summer doesn't mean we have to take a break from our diet. These snacks are great to enjoy in the summer and don’t come with the guilt of not sticking to your diet. If you have any other snack ideas that you love to use during the summer feel free to leave them in the comment box below. 

 Links: Watermelon.org, Webmd, Redbookmag,com


The World's Increasing Weight Problem

Over the years weight and obesity* has become an increasing concern in America. However, a recent study shows that this issue spreads beyond our borders. 

The recent study published in the medical journal The Lancet, gives a comprehensive look at obesity around the world and the results are universally the same: obesity is rising. The study analyzed 188 countries and it took a look at obesity rates from 1980-2013. During that time, they found that the obesity rate rose 8 percent for both men (from 29 to 37 percent) and women (from 30 to 38 percent). Also, overweight* and obesity rates increased in children and adolescents by almost 50 percent, with the increases primarily occurring in developed countries. 

 Even with the obesity increasing around the world, the United States continues to contribute most to the rising rate with 13 percent of its population, or 87 million, being obese. However, they are a couple of silver linings that we can consider. For one, developed countries such as the United States have seen their pace of obesity slowed recently, and our physical activity levels are increasing. With and increased activity rate and better dieting methods maybe we'll be able to be one of the few (or the first) countries to decrease the rate in the future.

For more information on the study, click here.

*Overweight- Body Mass Index (BMI), or weight-to-height ratio, greater than or equal to 25 and lower than 30.

*Obese- BMI equal or greater than 30.

Links: Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation, USA Today


Add Flavor, Not Calories

In an effort to make our food taste as good as possible, we sometimes add unnecessary calories to our meals. Oils, dressings, and sauces certainly can liven up a meal, but it comes with a price. Calories and fat are staples in those types of items, making a potentially healthy meal, a meal that could add pounds that you don’t want. 

Here are some ways to spice up the flavor of your meals while still maintaining a healthy diet:

Lemon Juice- Lemon Juice adds a zesty taste to your meal and goes well with salads or chicken dishes. Also, if you are thirsty but looking for some flavor, instead of reaching for the bottle of sugary juice, just add some lemon juice to a glass of water.

Herbs- For the most part herbs are extremely low in calories (<1 per tablespoon), but they pack a lot of flavor. Herbs like Rosemary, Basil, and Dill are ideal for salads and are healthier alternatives for the creamy dressings you may use, and could also add to the presentation of your dish.

Fresh Ginger- At only two calories per teaspoon, ginger has a unique blend of spice, flavor, and zest. Many times we find ourselves using it only when it accompanies our sushi meal, but it’s capable of so much more! Ginger can be used in your dessert, marinade, or juice, and its versatility extends to being used for medicine to treat upset stomachs, nausea, and other digestive issues.

Cinnamon- Cinnamon is great for adding to snacks and drinks. Top off your coffee, yogurt, nuts, or oatmeal with cinnamon to add the flavor you’re looking for without the calories. Cinnamon has two calories per teaspoon but more times than not, you won’t even need to use that much.

These are just a few of the many alternatives there are for adding flavor to your meal but not the calories. Never be afraid to experiment with different spices and flavors in order to find what you like best, as well as what you probably should stay away from. If you have any additional ways to add flavor to your meal feel free to add them in the box below!

Links: health.comthekitchn.com

Getting Started

    Interested in bringing Robard’s weight management programs, products, and services to your center?

    Become a Provider Today

    Looking for a Robard program and product provider in your area?

    Find a Clinic

    About Robard Corporation

    Weight loss, nutrition, diet, exercise, education, support, maintenance. Whether you're a professional looking for information about Robard's weight management programs and products or a dieter looking to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight, read on for interesting, informational, and entertaining entries to meet your weight management needs.

    Month List