Friday, May 30, 2014

Why you should eat carbs

Carbs and Protein: The role of the dynamic duo.

The pros and cons of carbohydrates and protein in our diets has received a lot of hype recently. Finding the truth amidst all of the media buzz has made finding the right diet plan difficult and confusing. Previously, many nutritionists have recommend a high carbohydrate, low-fat diet, for individuals who are trying to lose weight. Today, carbohydrates has become a dirty word. Although misnomers and confusion abound on how to lose weight, science can gives us clarity on the most successful way to lose weight and keep it off. Finding the right diet can be done simply- through the balance and moderation of carbs and proteins.

Undeniably, many people have quickly lost weight by cutting carbs from their diet, but it comes with a price. According to an article by, carbs and protein “are the two nutritional building blocks of your metabolism, and they must be consumed in a healthy balance to keep your energy levels high.”

The value of protein

According to the article, the majority of our daily energy comes from fast-burning carbs. This energy is made accessible by consuming protein. Protein helps create and maintain muscles. It also creates hormones and enzymes. In short, protein stabilizes metabolism so that carbohydrates can fuel our bodies with energy.  When we cut all carbs, we force our bodies to derive energy from protein, causing our bodies to perform less efficiently. Carb free diets that are high in protein also increase our chances of dehydration.

The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of protein is 0.8 grams of protein for every 1 kilogram body weight (when involved in weight training or strenuous exercise, the RDA can be as much as 1.8 grams per kilogram of body weight). For someone weighing 154 lbs. (70 kg), his or her RDA would be 56 grams of protein a day. Protein consumed in excess will become fat- so it is important not to over eat it. Complete proteins, which come from animal products, soy, or quina, is the best protein because it has all nine essential amino acids. According to the article, incomplete proteins can become complete proteins by combining them. This is done by eating nuts and legumes, beans and rice, peanut butter and toast, etc. Making incomplete proteins complete occurs only when combining incomplete proteins within 24 hours of each other. For more information about where and how to get enough complete proteins visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s website. 
The value of carbohydrates
Everyone is a fan of protein. Proteins have us feeling fuller longer, they help us build muscle mass, they give us essential amino acids and hormones.  Confusion lies in how carbohydrates treat our bodies. All carbs are sugar- it doesn't matter if it is honey, fruit, bread, or potatoes. This is why carbs get a bad reputation. Nonetheless, carbs are the bodies fuel, and allow us to perform at our best. According to the Fitday article, insulin moves sugar into the cells to be utilized as energy. Complex carbs, that are found in whole grains and whole wheat, are better than the simple carbs found in things like candy or honey. This is because complex carbs are slow burning, do not spike sugar levels, and keep us energized longer. 
Everyone will need to consume a different amount of carbs daily. RDA or carbs is based on weight and the calories needed to be consumed each day. There are four calories received from a single gram of carbs. The USDA recommends that 45 to 65 percent of our caloric intake should come from carbohydrates. For someone on 2,000 calorie diet, 225 -325 grams of carbohydrates are recommended by the USDA daily.
Carbs come from three main sources: fruits, dairy products, starches and starchy vegetables. It is recommended by the USDA that half or more should of consumed grains and starches should be complex carbs. To learn simple ways of getting enough complex carbs into your diet visit this website.
For most people, in order to have a healthy metabolism to keep our bodies working efficiently and energetically- we need to eat carbs and proteins. The dynamic duo is what will give us our maximum energy. For the most effective workouts, eat complex carbs before exercise. According to Fitday, “[carbs] will convert quickly to energy, and give you the vigor you need to get through your workout. Eat simple carbs, preferably fruit, after exercising, to raise your glycogen back to a productive level.”

Kay’s Naturals is designed to do just that. All of our products are high in complete proteins and will give you a balanced amount of complex carbohydrates. We take the confusion and frustration out of maintaining an energy maximising diet. To see what Kay;s has to offer visit our website!

Friday, May 23, 2014

Make Your Heart Happy! How to promote great cardio vascular health

The food we eat can have a tremendous effect on how our bodies function. This is especially true for our cardiovascular health. The foods we consume play a direct role in cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar levels. Eating healthy foods can also prevent future health problems from occurring. Making some simple changes to your diet can have you feeling better and healthier in no time. This article will identify some food to avoid or enjoy due to the way they affect cardiovascular health. The information relayed here was obtained from an article published by the University of California, San Francisco.
For heart-healthy diet follow these guidelines:

Low in sugar
Sugar can harm our cardiovascular healthy. Sugar is problematic for people with pre-diabetes, diabetes, or metabolic syndrome because it stimulates insulin production. Additionally, sugary foods are generally high calorie and can cause overeating and weight gain. Finally, overeating simple sugars can also raise blood levels of triglycerides.
Carbohydrates, and a bit of sugar, can be apart of your diet. According to UCSF, “a heart-healthy diet includes fruit, vegetables, grains and yogurt and milk for some — all of which contain naturally occurring sugars. Because these foods provide important vitamins, minerals and carbohydrates, the body's main fuel source, they should be a regular part of the diet.”
Low in sodium
The average American eats twice the recommended amount of salt each day. Reducing sodium intake is one of best things we can do to make our hearts happy. Although, sodium sensitivity varies person to person, sodium reduction can help decrease blood pressure significantly in many people. A low sodium diet can also delay or prevent high blood pressure as we age. It is good to aim consum 2,300 milligrams of sodium a day or less (1/2 to 1 teaspoon of table salt).
Low in trans and saturated fats
Avoid Saturated fats because they raise blood levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), the "bad" cholesterol. Only 7 percent of our calories should come from saturated fats each day. (A daily diet of 2,000 calories can have 16 grams of saturated fat, or less than 3 ounces of cheese.) To eat less saturated fat minimize consumption of meat (especially high processed meats such as bologna and sausage), cheese, butter and cream.
Trans fats damage our heart healthy because they raise LDL cholesterol and also decrease the "good cholesterol," high-density lipoprotein (HDL). There is no recommended level of trans fat because any amount can be harmful. Trans fats are most often found in food made with partially hydrogenated oils or has been deep fried. Fat altogether is not bad. Up to 35% of a heart-healthy diet can come from fat, it the fat is mostly mono- and polyunsaturated.  (For a 2,000 calorie daily diet that is a maximum of 78 grams of fat.)

Low in cholesterol
Cholesterol intake should be limited. Meats, egg yolks, organ meats, shrimp and squid are high in cholesterol. Minimize cholesterol-rich foods to once a week if you have the the risk of a heart attack or stroke.

High in omega-3 fats
According to UCSF , “Omega-3 fat, in the form of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), is being studied to find out exactly how it benefits health. So far, evidence is strongest for omega-3 fat's ability to lower blood pressure and decrease blood levels of triglycerides. At the UCSF Cardiovascular Care and Prevention Center, we recommend eating fish frequently — at least two times per week.”

High in fiber
Currently, the average American eats about about half the recommended amount of fiber. We should be consuming at least 25-30 grams everyday. Fiber is an essential part of a heart-healthy diet, Soluble fiber is especially important because it decreases blood cholesterol. Fruits, legumes, and vegetables are often high in fiber.

Eating to nurture a healthy heart does not have to be at the expense of convenience and taste. Kay’s Naturals can be apart of your heart-healthy diet because all of our products are low sodium, low sugar, low fat, and high in fiber. All our products are diabetes friends, certified gluten free, and have great taste. To learn more, visit our website!
Additional helpful information on how to eat your way to a happy heart can found at the website heart healthy.

This article is only for educational purposes and should not replace the advice of a doctor or healthcare provider.

Friday, May 16, 2014

What is Hashimoto's Disease?

The Kay’s Naturals blog will be dedicating three of our bi-weekly articles to understanding autoimmune disorders. This is important because, like allergies and food sensitivities, the prevalence of autoimmune diseases are increasing. Creating awareness is essential if people are to receive adequate treatment as soon as possible. Autoimmune disorders remain largely underdiagnosed.  Currently, there is no comprehensive or universally agreed understanding of why autoimmune diseases are increasing. Hopefully research will shed light on this pertinent global health concern in the near future.

Our first article is about the lesser known Hashimotos Disease. According to, Hashimotos is an autoimmune disease that affects the thyroid, a small gland below the Adam's apple. Hormones called T3 and T4 are created by the Thyroid to regulate how the body uses energy. Hashimoto’s disease causes the immune system to make antibodies that harm thyroid cells and inhibit with the cells capacity to make thyroid hormones. Over time, this can cause an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) that produces low thyroid hormone levels. This is a health concern because low thyroid hormone levels cause “every function of the body to slow down, such as heart rate, brain function, and the rate your body turns food into energy.” An underactive thyroid is frequently caused by Hashimoto’s disease.

Diagnosing Hashimoto’s disease is difficult in part because many have no symptoms for years. A goiter (an enlarged thyroid) frequently is first sign of Hashimoto’s disease. The goiter is mostly painless, but may “cause the front of the neck to look swollen. If large, it may cause a feeling of fullness in the throat or make it hard to swallow” ( Symptoms frequently remain unnoticeable or mild initially, but worsen over time.  Below are some symptoms of an underactive thyroid from

      Weight gain
      Pale, puffy face
      Feeling cold
      Joint and muscle pain
      Dry, thinning hair
      Heavy menstrual flow or irregular periods
      A slowed heart rate
      Problems getting pregnant

According to the Mayo Clinic, “treatment of Hashimoto's disease with thyroid hormone replacement usually is simple and effective.” However, Dr, Kharrazian believes that a gluten-free diet is a critical first step for individuals with Hashimoto’s. According to his blog, “Numerous studies from several countries show a strong link between gluten intolerance and Hashimoto’s. [...] Every time you eat gluten, your immune system launches an attack not only against gluten but also against the thyroid gland. This immune response to gluten can last up to six months each time it’s ingested [...] I continue my research and practice in neurology, I never cease to be amazed at how profoundly one’s brain health, a concern for all those struggling with hypothyroidism, can be impacted by removing gluten from the diet.” Additional advice about what to eat with Hashimoto’s disease can be found on his blog.

Kay’s is committed to increasing the health and well-being of the public by provide high-protein, low-sugar. gluten-free snacks and cereals that are convenient and accessible. Making significant changes to your diet can be overwhelming. Kay’s Naturals is here to ensure a smooth transition into healthy and transformative eating habits.

Friday, May 9, 2014

What to eat after Bariatric Surgery

Bariatric surgery can be an excellent way to assist individuals to lose weight by reducing the the amount of food eaten. According to an article published on The National Center for Biotechnology Information website, “the IGB [isolated gastric bypass] succeeded in 93% of the obese or morbidly obese patients and in 57% of the super-obese patients” observed in a 5 year study.
Their success however. was contingent on closely following a diet outlined by a doctor. There are some common guidelines individuals should follow in the months after a Bariatric surgery. For the first 1-6 months a heavily restricted diet is suggested to ensure the stomach heals. After six months DukeHealth and the Mayo Clinic have the following suggestions:
  • Adequate nutrition is a must to remain hydrated, have skin elasticity, hydration, maintain lean body mass, and minimize hair loss. This can be achieved through vitamin and mineral supplementation
  • Have a high protein diet to assist in healing in the stomach and minimize the loss of lean body mass
  • Drink enough fluid between meals to stay hydrated. Do not drink fluids 30 minutes before meals or while eating
  • Chew food carefully and thoroughly
  • Severely limit consumption of sugars as they can cause individuals who have undergone gastric bypass surgery to feel sweaty, light-headed, or faint. Sugar can also cause "dumping syndrome." 
  • Avoid high fat foods as they can cause nausea and hamper weight loss.

These restrictions, as well as additional requests from the doctor, can make eating properly after gastric bypass surgery exceedingly difficult. Kay’s Naturals has proven effective for individuals on a gastric bypass diet. Our snacks and cereals are low in fat and sugar, while being high in protein and fiber. For example our White Cheddar Kruncheeze comes in individualized 1.2 oz bags. Each serving has 12 grams of protein, 1 gram of sugar, and 2 grams of fiber. Shop online to decided which Kay’s Naturals snack or cereal is best for you!