It’s okay Mount Pleasant and Charleston, we’ve all been there—eating that extra slice of pizza or downing that extra beer thinking, “It’s okay, I’ll just workout twice as hard tomorrow…”  In fact, it’s basically a staple in American culture: Work hard, Play Hard!    

Unfortunately that philosophy doesn’t pan out when it comes to working out.  According to Men’s Fitness, “Sadly, you can’t exercise off a crappy diet. Science backs it up…Calories are not created equally. You’d never say the calories in spinach are the same as the ones in a pint of ice cream, right? The calories in spinach trigger different reactions in your body than whatever Rocky Road concoction you’re shoveling in by the spoonful.”  So basically, blasting 300 calories on the treadmill may not erase the negative impact that a plate of fries has on your midsection…

So beyond calories in/calories out, the TYPES of calories you eat make a difference on your overall health.  Harvard School of Public Health explains: “There’s ample research on foods and diet patterns that protect against heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and other chronic conditions. The good news is that many of the foods that help prevent disease also seem to help with weight control-foods like whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and nuts. And many of the foods that increase disease risk-chief among them, refined grains and sugary drinks-are also factors in weight gain.  Conventional wisdom says that since a calorie is a calorie, regardless of its source, the best advice for weight control is simply to eat less and exercise more. Yet emerging research suggests that some foods and eating patterns may make it easier to keep calories in check, while others may make people more likely to overeat.”

And it turns out, WHEN you eat makes a difference as well.  US News and World Report explains, “Recently, however, evidence has emerged suggesting that when we eat may matter more than previously believed, and as such, that the timing of our eating patterns may indeed be a contributing factor to whether we gain – or lose – weight on any given type of diet.”  It turns out that those who graze after dinner, or binge on a midnight snack tend to keep on more weight than those who eat more calories earlier in the day.

With that in mind, here are DUFF’s 8 Great Nutritional Guidelines to get you started on the right path to good nutrition:

  1. Eat every 3 Hours (5 times a day): Breakfast, Mid Morning Snack, Lunch, Mid Afternoon Snack, Dinner
  2. Eat breakfast within 15 minutes of waking up
  3. Keep each of the 5 meals under 20grams of Carbohydrates (under 100g total for the day)
  4. Stick with LOW glycemic carbohydrates (a.k.a. fruits and veggies) instead of bread, rice or other high carb options
  5. Limit your alcohol.  Whenever alcohol (beer, wine, liquor, etc) is in your bloodstream, your body CANNOT BURN FAT!
  6. With each meal, combine all 3 macronutrients: Protein, Carbohydrates, Fat
  7. Make sure you are eating enough throughout the day.  Avoid the late night binge by eating proper proportions at regular intervals.
  8. If you are hungry, EAT!  Listen to your body and avoid starvation.  Ravenous people seldom make prudent food choices.

In the upcoming weeks we will focus on different aspects of each of these EIGHT RULES.  Keep on the lookout for recipes, tips and inspiration to help you maximize your workouts by FUELING YOUR FITNESS and EATING RIGHT.

We also offer nutritional consultations & Group Healthy Shopping Seminars. Please contact us to set up an appointment at