Diet and Sleep: Is There A Relationship?

Sleep plays a vital role in optimal health and performance. Getting enough sleep can affect your mental health, safety, and physical health. Sleep is measured by many factors but to keep it simple, we will look at sleep duration and sleep quality. Sleep duration is the amount, in hours, of undisturbed sleep. Sleep quality is measured by slow wave sleep and rapid eye movement. Slow wave sleep happens when you are in deep sleep and the body is building up physical and mental energy. Certain functions decrease, such as brain and muscle activity, and the body can actually rest. Rapid eye movement occurs when the body is in the REM stage of sleep. This is the stage of sleep when you are actively dreaming. Both slow wave sleep and rapid eye movement occur more often when undisturbed sleep duration is longer. In this article, we will focus on how sleep affects physical health and how nutrition plays a role in this relationship. Studies have shown that individuals who tend to have less than optimal sleeping patterns, less than 7 hours of undisturbed sleep, tend to be at higher risk of becoming obese. Other studies have shown that sleeping less than 8 hours a night can increase your chances of injury by 70%.¹  Now that we have some background on sleep we will be reviewing how carbohydrate and healthy fats play a vital role in sleep.

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Registered Dietitians…Are They Worth It?

First, let’s be honest. Seeking professional advice from a Registered Dietitian (RD) may not be the cheapest option when trying to reach your health and fitness goals. To seek help from these nutrition gurus, prices range anywhere from $60-$200 per session. Ask yourself this, “Is my health worth it?”. If you say yes, then check out our website for more information on how to get started. If you are still on the fence about seeing an RD, continue reading this article and see for yourself why talking with an RD is a no-brainer. Being registered dietitians ourselves, we wanted to write this article to show you that going this route is well worth the cost.

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NFP’s 3 Favorite Slow Cooker Meals

The slow cooker is a magical piece of kitchen equipment. Having the luxury of placing all your ingredients in one pot and letting the cooker do the rest is a B-E-A-UTIFUL thing. Slow cookers also come in a variety of sizes making it easy to cook large portions for your meal prepping needs.  We wanted to share three recipes that can make your life a whole lot easier when it comes to meal prepping, or cooking in general. There is a chicken option, beef option and a vegetarian option. Let us know what you think! If you have any questions, feel free to leave us a comment. Enjoy!

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NFP Personal Pita Pizza

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We can all agree that pizza is one of the best foods on the face of this planet. The soft dough and crispy crust that gently nestles a vibrant red and delicious tomato sauce in the center, topped with an endless amount of options! Many people refrain from indulging because it can be a high-calorie food. Well, we decided to take a fan favorite and turn it into something a little more healthier so you can enjoy it guilt-freeee!!!! We used a whole wheat alternative crust, low-fat cheese, and loaded it with tons of vegetables. ENJOY!!!

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Happy Registered Dietitian Day: RDs In The Spotlight

          Happy National Registered Dietitian (RD) Day! Recognized as the nation’s food and nutrition experts, Registered Dietitians around the nation are committed to improving the health and wellness of their clients, no matter how big or small the goals. What better way to celebrate this day by recognizing some of our nation’s elite. In this post, we went and interviewed three Registered Dietitians from different parts of the country. Before we dive into these interviews, let’s first look at some key messages the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics has to say about Registered Dietitians (versus “nutritionists” or self-proclaimed “nutrition/health coaches”).

  • RDs are food and nutrition EXPERTS who can translate the science of nutrition into practical solutions and tactics for their clients/patients.
  • RDs undergo a rigorous curriculum and have degrees in nutrition/dietetics, public health or a related field from a credentialed university. They also go through an 8 month to 1-year internship program where they practice their clinical, community and management skills.
  • RDs take a national exam that grant them the official credentials of RD or RDN (Registered Dietitian Nutritionist). They are not self-proclaimed nutrition coaches. They are the real deal.
  • You can find RDs throughout the community including hospitals, schools, public health clinics, nursing homes, health/fitness centers, food industry, universities, research labs and private practice.

Nutrition For Performance has the privilege of knowing each one of these RDs. They exude love for this profession and have a profound respect for food, and food’s true power on overall health. So without further ado, let’s get into these RDs in the spotlight!

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National Nutrition Month: 31 Days To A Healthier You

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Today marks the first day of National Nutrition Month®. According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics:

“National Nutrition Month® is a nutrition education and information campaign created annually in March by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The campaign focuses on the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits. In addition, National Nutrition Month® promotes the Academy and its members to the public and the media as the most valuable and credible source of timely, scientifically-based food and nutrition information.”

What better way to celebrate this month with 31 Days To A Healthier You Challenge! This is not your typical challenge. There is no competition with others. There is no first, second, or third place. This is purely a competition with yourself. A competition to see if you can become a healthier version of yourself after 31 days. To help you out, every day during the month of March, Nutrition For Performance will be giving you a tactical tip that will help you elevate your overall health to the next level. We will also be posting other surprises related to this special month on our blog and social media!

If you are up for the challenge and want to make sure you don’t miss out on 31 Days To A Healthier You:

1.) Follow us on Instagram @nutrition4performance and be sure to turn on the push notifications

2.) Like and follow our Facebook page

We love feedback from our followers, so please let us know your successes and/or challenges along the way.


Shopping Healthy On A Budget: Tips That Will Make Your Wallet Smile

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There is a misconception that shopping for healthy food can be expensive, which it can be if done incorrectly. Before going any further, we can all agree on one thing and that is eating healthy and embracing a healthier lifestyle is dirt cheap compared to the cost of illness. In this week’s article, we will be dive into ways you can save money while shopping to maintain your healthy lifestyle.

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“Will You Be My Valentine?” Wheycakes

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          With Valentine’s day right around the corner, what better “whey” to say I love you than cooking a beautiful breakfast for that special someone. This recipe is quick and easy to prepare and will be sure to put a smile on your valentine’s face. Oh! and did we mention, these are a healthier alternative to the traditional pancake? If you decide to surprise your loved one with these yummy valentine wheycakes, post your masterpiece on Instagram or Facebook, tag @nutrition4perfomance, and use hashtag #ValentineWheyCakes. Let us know how they come out!

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Fiber: What Is It? Are You Getting Enough Of It?

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Over the past few weeks, NFP has been completing numerous body composition analyses. Note: We would like to thank everyone who participated in helping us meet our requirements to become certified! While the measurements were being taken, many people had great questions regarding nutrition. One of the most frequently asked questions was about fiber, and how fiber contributes to our overall health. In this article, we will discuss what exactly fiber is, the types of fiber that are found in the foods you eat, and how the different types of fiber function uniquely in the body.

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