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Good versus Too Good

Marni Sumbal

My next dietetic professional is Ryan Andrews. Ryan has more credentials than I can dream of, but maybe I'm just jealous :) I met Ryan at my first ISSN conference in New Orleans (same one where I met Cass from the previous post). Ryan really got me interested in sports nutrition and from his bodybuilding background I was really intrigued how nutrition can play such an important role in the physique of the human body. Because I was just starting my graduate program and not yet a competitive triathlete, I had no idea that one nutrition conference would start a lifetime of wanting to know everything about sports nutrition.
I think this article by Ryan is just great for all of us. We can all relate to the topic of foods that are good and just too good. This article makes me think of the several times that Karel orders something when we travel and when I try it I say "that can't be healthy..it tastes way too good!"

Good versus Too Good
Ryan D. Andrews, MS, MA, RD, CSCS, NSCA-CPT, ACSM-HFS, CISSN


I like food that tastes good.
I DO NOT like food that tastes too good.
Food that tastes too good kind of freaks me out.

I remember early in high school when I would frequent fast food joints, that stuff tasted too good. I didn't want to stop eating it. I would physically be full, but for some reason I would want to keep eating it.
You know what I'm talking about.
Now I eat foods on a daily basis that are good, and I enjoy them. But the foods I regularly eat definitely aren't too good.
Yes - a difference exists.
Foods that are too good don't have a place in my weekly food rotation. Why? I don't want them there. They scare me. My appetite regulating systems go knucklehead and nothing positive happens.
Now - we aren't brain dead. We can be smart when eating some of the foods that fall under the too good category. However, I'll warn you, it may require your willpower and cognitive eating skills to kick in. Uh oh.
I've noticed some trends over the years (in clients, via societal observation, my own habits, in kids, etc.) that have led me to decipher between foods that are good and foods that are too good.

Are you ready to see my list? Let's do it.

Good:
Raw, unsalted, nut butter (simple, satisfying and tasty)
Too Good:
Salted, sugar added peanut butter (too much stimulation for my taste buds)

Good:
Brown rice, veggie stir-fry made at home (after one plate, I'm good)
Too Good:
Rice and veggies stir-fry from the local Chinese take-out (after one plate, I'm ready for 5 more - can I hear it for salt, oil and MSG)

Good:
Raw, unsalted nuts/seeds (a few handfuls and I'm content)
Too Good:
Roasted, salted, and sweetened/flavored nuts (can you eat the entire Costco wholesale container?)

Good:
Plain, homemade popcorn (a couple bowls and I feel great)
Too Good:
Oil added, salt added, sugar added popcorn

Good:
Baked potato/sweet potato (tasty and satisfying)
Too Good:
French fries, baked potato/sweet potato with Earth Balance, potato chips (don't want anymore, yet still want to eat them)

Good:
Sprouted grain bread (a slice of this stuff with hummus or nut butter and I'm good)
Too Good:
Regular flour/enriched breads (too light, too fluffy, too unsatisfying)

Good:
Fruit (if I eat two pieces of whole fruit, I'm feeling good about my food intake for the day)
Too Good:
Dried fruits (that was only a 5 pound bag? Gosh....)

Good:
Oatmeal, quinoa, buckwheat, corn, wild rice, most any plain, steamed whole grain (one bowl and I'm good)
Too Good:
Standard cold breakfast cereals with added sugars and salt (I spent way too many days after junior high eating massive bowls of Cinnamon Toast Crunch)
or
Crackers, pretzels (you know the drill)

Good:
Homemade raw cookies with dates, walnuts, and coconut (dense - I am satisfied after one or two)
Too Good:
Standard flour based cookies with margarine, oil, sweeteners, and processed grains (the combo of oil, flour and sweetener is taste overload)

Good:
Beans/chickpeas (one of natures perfect foods)
Too Good:
Beans with lard in a huge flour tortilla with salt and cheese from your local restaurant (Taco Bell gives beans a bad rap)

A lot of this makes sense, doesn't it?
I mean, when you look at the list, the common theme is that the too good foods have been altered. They are man-made products (or a whole food with added man-made ingredients). Too good foods aren't true to what you would find in nature.
Food companies want to alter foods so that we, the consumers, eat too much of them. When we eat too much, we buy more, and we keep coming back for more. That means more profit for them and more disease and body fat for us.
All of us are a bit different. Some people may classify a particular food too good, while someone else may consider it good.
Have you found any foods that are good and too good? What makes them different?


Ryan's bio:
http://www.precisionnutrition.com/
A nationally ranked competitive bodybuilder from 1996-2001, Ryan trained and worked at The Johns Hopkins Weight Management Center, one of the most recognized and awarded research institutions in the world.

Throughout his time in university, Ryan was trained in Exercise Physiology, Nutrition, and Dietetics. As he has gathered together a huge breadth of knowledge and experience, Ryan was a natural fit for the position of Director of Education here at Precision Nutrition.

Educational Background
Johns Hopkins Bayview - Medical Center Dietetic Internship
Kent State University - MA; Exercise Physiology & MS; Nutrition
University of Northern Colorado - BS; Exercise Science w/ Nutrition Minor

Certifications
ADA-Registered Dietitian (ADA-RD)
ACSM-Health and Fitness Instructor (ACSM-H/FI)
NSCA-Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (NSCA-CSCS)
ISSN-Certified Sports Nutritionist (CISSN)
NSCA-Certified Personal Trainer (NSCA-CPT)
ServSafe Certified

Research Experiences
Andrews RD, Gasier HG, Riechman SE. Body composition changes inconsistent with classic energy balance models: a case report. Maryland Dietetic Association Annual Meeting. March, 2006.

Andrews RD, Riechman SE, MacLean DA. Protein intake for skeletal muscle hypertrophy with resistance training in seniors. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. Aug 2006;16:362-372.

Bowman JM, Hammer SB, Andrews RD, Giguere SA, Riechman SE. Blood pressure responses to resistance training in 60-69 year old men and women. Med Sci Sports Exerc. (abstr) 2005.

Riechman SE, Andrews RD, MacLean DA. Dietary and blood cholesterol and statins increase hypertrophy with resistance training. FASEB J. 2005.

Andrews RD, Riechman SE, MacLean DA. Optimal protein intake for skeletal muscle hypertrophy with resistance training in 60-69 year old men and women. FASEB J. 2005.

Fascione J, Michel DA, Riechman SE, Hammer SB, Andrews RD. The Association of foot arch height and running performance. Med Sci Sports Exerc. (abstr) 2005.

Andrews RD, Lowry Gordon D, Burzminski N, Riechman SE. The influence of food groups and micronutrients with resistance exercise training on bone mineral changes in the elderly. International Society of Sports Nutrition. June 2005. JISSN 2(1);106-107.

Gearhart RF, Lagally KM, Riechman SE, Andrews RD, Robertson RJ. Assessment of relative strength pre- and post-resistance training using the omni resistance exercise scale. Med Sci Sports Exerc. (abstr) 2006.

Gearhart RF, Lagally KM, Riechman SE, Andrews RD, Robertson RJ. Strength tracking using the OMNI resistance exercise scale in older men and women. Med Sci Sports Exerc. In Press. 2007.

Andrews RD. Protein and skeletal muscle hypertrophy. AgroFood Industry Hi-Tech. 2007.

Riechman SE, Andrews RD, MacLean DA. Dietary and Blood Cholesterol, Statins and Sarcopenia Prevention. Journal of Gerontology Medical Sciences. 2007;62:1164-1171.


Thanks Ryan!!