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Energy Zappers 

1. Dehydration
Your extreme fatigue might be coming from hidden sources. Nixing these spirit-depleting factors from your life will automatically help reboot your verve.
It turns out that even moderate dehydration (which results in the loss of 3 percent of your body weight) can make you feel mentally sluggish and mess with your concentration. The next time you're feeling foggy or lightheaded, don't just assume you're in serious need of some food. Try downing a glass or two of water.

2. Cell Phones
Checking your cell before bed amps up brain activity, making it harder to doze off. Plus, any electronic gadget's artificial blue light can suppress the sleep hormone melatonin. A 2011 poll by the National Sleep Foundation found that 20 percent of people ages 19 to 29 are awakened by a call, text, or e-mail at least a few nights a week. Power it down well before bedtime.

3. Medication
Many drugs have veiled energy-sapping side effects. Chief among them are some classes of antidepressants and certain beta-blockers used to prevent migraines or treat high blood pressure. If you start a new med and feel more lethargic than usual, see doctor Bert for an alternative. (If there isn't one, take your dose right before bed.)

 4. Overtraining
While working out zaps the stress hormone cortisol, prolonged sweat sessions--like, for example, regularly running for more than 30 minutes at a steady rate--can actually rev cortisol production. Interval training (bursts of intense activity) combined with strength training (free-weight and body-weight moves) helps keep cortisol in check.

5. Low Iron
The mineral shuttles oxygen around your body and removes waste from your cells. If you're not getting around 18 milligrams a day, your body struggles to function properly and you can feel worn out; low iron levels in your diet can cause iron deficiency anemia. If you feel sluggish, call our office and ask for a simple blood test to see if you should be taking a supplement. 

For more information please call our office at 786-360-6355 

Road Trip

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Super-Charged Carrot Muffins
These delicious muffins are highly nutritious and packed with energy. They combine plenty of protein and carbohydrate and - with a glass of milk - make a complete small meal.

This recipe makes 12 muffins.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Prepare a no-stick 12-muffin tin.

1 cup oat flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup wheat germ
1/2 cup brown sugar
9 TBSP plain or vanilla protein powder
3/4 TSP salt
1 1/2 TSP cinnamon
2 TSP baking soda

Sift together the oat flour, whole wheat flour, baking soda, and cinnamon. Combine in a bowl with the wheat germ, salt, brown sugar, and protein powder. Mix well, combining all ingredients.

3/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
4 large egg whites (or 1/2 cup egg substitute)
3/4 cup 1% or 2% milk
2 cups carrots, shredded

In a separate bowl, combine the egg whites, milk, and applesauce. Pour this mixture into the dry ingredients mixture. Stir well, moistening all ingredients. Gently fold in the shredded carrots. Mix well.

Fill all 12 muffin cups. Bake 18-20 minutes until golden. Insert a toothpick and make sure it comes out clean.

Enjoy these marvelous muffins!
The days are long, the weather's warm, the sky is blue . . . it's summer and we're ready to enjoy the great American pastime - road trips!

We want to get to wherever we're going safely - and healthily, too. A safe trip is ensured by following the rules of the road and practicing good driving habits. A healthy trip is ensured by bringing along snacks that fill us with fuel and are packed with healthful nutrients.

And a fun trip is ensured by keeping the kids entertained with plenty of music, games, and electronic gadgets.

Being a safe driver consists of continuously practicing many small habits.1,2 Keeping your eyes on the road is a given. When you need to check how the kids are doing in the back seat, just flick your eyes to the rear-view mirror. Don't turn your head around - instead, make eye contact with them in the mirror. Your kids can read your eyes pretty well - they don't need to see your face to know what you want them to do.

Keep checking the traffic around you. Use all three mirrors to see what's going on - who's behind you and who's on your right and left. Always make sure you have enough space to stop short or make a quick lane change if needed. If you're boxed in, all you can do when confronted with an obstacle is crash.

Maintain a minimum safe distance (MSD) from the car in front of you. The MSD between two cars traveling at 65 MPH on the freeway is three seconds. Find a landmark and start counting as the car in front of you passes it. If you reach it in less than three seconds there's not enough space between you and the first car.

And of course, only use a hands-free cell phone.

What about food? On longer trips, good snacks are key - for both the adults and the kids.

Kids want to eat chips, cookies, and candy.3 The best we can do is bring along more nutritious alternatives as well and encourage our kids to mix and match. Energy bars combining 20 grams of protein and 25 grams of carbohydrate are terrific. These chocolate-coated complete small meals have only 5 grams of fat and 300 calories. Juices without sugar additives provide energy and vitamins. Bananas, apples, carrots, and celery can be sliced and carried in plastic bags for no-mess access.

Bring plenty of water. Drinking enough water keeps everyone alert and focused. This is particularly important for the driver, as well as the passengers. Drinking enough water is a subtle way to keep everyone's spirits up, ensuring a happy, fun trip.

Road trips help families bond and create life-long memories. A little preparation goes a long way toward making these family outings safe and fun!

1Verschuur WL, Hurts K: Modeling safe and unsafe driving behaviour. Accid Anal Rev 40(2):644-656, 2008
2Donmez B, et al: Mitigating driver distractions with retrospective and concurrent feedback. Accid Anal Prev 40(2):776-786, 2008
3Contento IR, et al: Enhancing personal agency and competence in eating and moving. Formative evaluation of a middle school curriculum. J Nutr Educ Behav 39(5 Suppl):S179-S186, 2007