Tuesday, October 27, 2009

All About Sugar

Caitlin's Thoughts:

Ok, we all know that sugar isn't the greatest thing to put in our bodies... but I decided to explain to everyone WHY sugar is such a bad idea... (I'd like to request that you not switch to sugar substitutes right away though, that's next weeks blog topic).

Don't get me wrong, I still struggle with my own sugar addiction. I might even consider myself something of a sugar connoisseur. However, that time is over now. I have learned the American way of eating is at the root of our obesity epidemic and can no longer sit idly while we all get fat. So with this blog post, I am going to make a promise to the rest of you. I will listen to my own advice, and I will be cutting out sugar from my diet in every way possible. That promise includes all sugar, even white carbs, and Halloween candy. I'm going to cut it out completely for a month, and then report to you any signs or symptoms of change due to the lack of sugar in my diet.

If I'm anything, I'm an experimenter. Most of my training methods have been tried out on myself first. The advice I give in this blog, is something I have tried and listened to myself. In fact, my post about high fructose corn syrup was written 6-9 months after I had last even allowed high fructose corn syrup to enter my body. I haven't touched the stuff since! I know it will be hard, but I will blog about the hardships of getting over my sugar addiction, and try to make it to 30 days without sugar. I encourage the rest of you to try this with me! They say if you do something for 4-6 weeks it becomes a habit, so maybe I can cut out sugar for good. But now I do it for the sake of my own health, due to the research I just completed, and for the sake of experiment!


Sugar is a listed ingredient in almost every packaged food item available. It flavors even our salty foods, our breads, and sauces. Sugar stimulates the taste buds in a most delightful way. It gives us instant energy, but not without a price. The following is a list of things sugar does to us, backed by several research studies, and taken from Nancy Appleton, Ph.D on her site you can see the research studies she cited to back up every single item listed:

1. Sugar can suppress the immune system.

2. Sugar upsets the mineral relationships in the body.

3. Sugar can cause hyperactivity, anxiety, difficulty concentrating, and crankiness in children.

4. Sugar can produce a significant rise in triglycerides.

5. Sugar contributes to the reduction in defense against bacterial infection (infectious diseases).

6. Sugar causes a loss of tissue elasticity and function, the more sugar you eat the more elasticity and function you loose.

7. Sugar reduces high density lipoproteins.

8. Sugar leads to chromium deficiency.

9. Sugar leads to cancer of the ovaries.

10. Sugar can increase fasting levels of glucose.

11. Sugar causes copper deficiency.

12. Sugar interferes with absorption of calcium and magnesium.

13. Sugar can weaken eyesight.

14. Sugar raises the level of a neurotransmitters: dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine.

15. Sugar can cause hypoglycemia.

16. Sugar can produce an acidic digestive tract.

17. Sugar can cause a rapid rise of adrenaline levels in children.

18. Sugar malabsorption is frequent in patients with functional bowel disease.

19. Sugar can cause premature aging.

20. Sugar can lead to alcoholism.

21. Sugar can cause tooth decay.

22. Sugar contributes to obesity.

23. High intake of sugar increases the risk of Crohn's disease, and ulcerative colitis.

24. Sugar can cause changes frequently found in person with gastric or duodenal ulcers.

25. Sugar can cause arthritis.

26. Sugar can cause asthma.

27. Sugar greatly assists the uncontrolled growth of Candida Albicans (yeast infections).

28. Sugar can cause gallstones.

29. Sugar can cause heart disease.

30. Sugar can cause appendicitis.

31. Sugar can cause multiple sclerosis.

32. Sugar can cause hemorrhoids.

33. Sugar can cause varicose veins.

34. Sugar can elevate glucose and insulin responses in oral contraceptive users.

35. Sugar can lead to periodontal disease.

36. Sugar can contribute to osteoporosis.

37. Sugar contributes to saliva acidity.

38. Sugar can cause a decrease in insulin sensitivity.

39. Sugar can lower the amount of Vitamin E (alpha-Tocopherol) in the blood.

40. Sugar can decrease growth hormone.

41. Sugar can increase cholesterol.

42. Sugar can increase the systolic blood pressure.

43. Sugar can cause drowsiness and decreased activity in children.

44. High sugar intake increases advanced glycation end products (AGEs)(Sugar bound non-enzymatically to protein)

45. Sugar can interfere with the absorption of protein.

46. Sugar causes food allergies.

47. Sugar can contribute to diabetes.

48. Sugar can cause toxemia during pregnancy.

49. Sugar can contribute to eczema in children.

50. Sugar can cause cardiovascular disease.

51. Sugar can impair the structure of DNA

52. Sugar can change the structure of protein.

53. Sugar can make our skin age by changing the structure of collagen.

54. Sugar can cause cataracts.

55. Sugar can cause emphysema.

56. Sugar can cause atherosclerosis.

57. Sugar can promote an elevation of low density lipoproteins (LDL).

58. High sugar intake can impair the physiological homeostasis of many systems in the body.

59. Sugar lowers the enzymes ability to function.

60. Sugar intake is higher in people with Parkinson’s disease.

61. Sugar can cause a permanent altering the way the proteins act in the body.

62. Sugar can increase the size of the liver by making the liver cells divide.

63. Sugar can increase the amount of liver fat.

64. Sugar can increase kidney size and produce pathological changes in the kidney.

65. Sugar can damage the pancreas.

66. Sugar can increase the body's fluid retention.

67. Sugar is enemy #1 of the bowel movement.

68. Sugar can cause myopia (nearsightedness).

69. Sugar can compromise the lining of the capillaries.

70. Sugar can make the tendons more brittle.

71. Sugar can cause headaches, including migraine.

72. Sugar plays a role in pancreatic cancer in women.

73. Sugar can adversely affect school children's grades and cause learning disorders.

74. Sugar can cause an increase in delta, alpha, and theta brain waves.

75. Sugar can cause depression.

76. Sugar increases the risk of gastric cancer.

77. Sugar and cause dyspepsia (indigestion).

78. Sugar can increase your risk of getting gout.

79. Sugar can increase the levels of glucose in an oral glucose tolerance test over the ingestion of complex carbohydrates.

80. Sugar can increase the insulin responses in humans consuming high-sugar diets compared to low sugar diets.

81. High refined sugar diet reduces learning capacity.

82. Sugar can cause less effective functioning of two blood proteins, albumin, and lipoproteins, which may reduce the body’s ability to handle fat and cholesterol.

83. Sugar can contribute to Alzheimer’s disease.

84. Sugar can cause platelet adhesiveness.

85. Sugar can cause hormonal imbalance; some hormones become underactive and others become overactive.

86. Sugar can lead to the formation of kidney stones.

87. Sugar can lead to the hypothalamus to become highly sensitive to a large variety of stimuli.

88. Sugar can lead to dizziness.

89. Diets high in sugar can cause free radicals and oxidative stress.

90. High sucrose diets of subjects with peripheral vascular disease significantly increases platelet adhesion.

91. High sugar diet can lead to biliary tract cancer.

92. Sugar feeds cancer.

93. High sugar consumption of pregnant adolescents is associated with a twofold increased risk for delivering a small-for-gestational-age (SGA) infant.

94. High sugar consumption can lead to substantial decrease in gestation duration among adolescents.

95. Sugar slows food's travel time through the gastrointestinal tract.

96. Sugar increases the concentration of bile acids in stools and bacterial enzymes in the colon. This can modify bile to produce cancer-causing compounds and colon cancer.

97. Sugar increases estradiol (the most potent form of naturally occurring estrogen) in men.

98. Sugar combines and destroys phosphatase, an enzyme, which makes the process of digestion more difficult.

99. Sugar can be a risk factor of gallbladder cancer.

100. Sugar is an addictive substance.

101. Sugar can be intoxicating, similar to alcohol.

102. Sugar can exacerbate PMS.

103. Sugar given to premature babies can affect the amount of carbon dioxide they produce.

104. Decrease in sugar intake can increase emotional stability.

105. The body changes sugar into 2 to 5 times more fat in the bloodstream than it does starch.

106. The rapid absorption of sugar promotes excessive food intake in obese subjects.

107. Sugar can worsen the symptoms of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

108. Sugar adversely affects urinary electrolyte composition.

109. Sugar can slow down the ability of the adrenal glands to function.

110. Sugar has the potential of inducing abnormal metabolic processes in a normal healthy individual and to promote chronic degenerative diseases.

111.. I.Vs (intravenous feedings) of sugar water can cut off oxygen to the brain.

112. High sucrose intake could be an important risk factor in lung cancer.

113. Sugar increases the risk of polio.

114. High sugar intake can cause epileptic seizures.

115. Sugar causes high blood pressure in obese people.

116. In Intensive Care Units, limiting sugar saves lives.

117. Sugar may induce cell death.

118. Sugar can increase the amount of food that you eat.

119. In juvenile rehabilitation camps, when children were put on a low sugar diet, there was a 44% drop in antisocial behavior.

120. Sugar can lead to prostrate cancer.

121. Sugar dehydrates newborns.

122. Sugar increases the estradiol in young men.

123. Sugar can cause low birth weight babies.

124. Greater consumption of refined sugar is associated with a worse outcome of schizophrenia

125. Sugar can raise homocysteine levels in the blood stream.

126. Sweet food items increase the risk of breast cancer.

127. Sugar is a risk factor in cancer of the small intestine.

128. Sugar may cause laryngeal cancer.

129. Sugar induces salt and water retention.

130. Sugar may contribute to mild memory loss.

131. As sugar increases in the diet of 10 years olds, there is a linear decrease in the intake of many essential nutrients.

132. Sugar can increase the total amount of food consumed.

133. Exposing a newborn to sugar results in a heightened preference for sucrose relative to water at 6 months and 2 years of age. (In case you're wondering why you have always been addicted to sugar)

134. Sugar causes constipation.

135. Sugar causes varicose veins.

136. Sugar can cause brain decay in prediabetic and diabetic women.

137. Sugar can increase the risk of stomach cancer.

138. Sugar can cause metabolic syndrome.

139. Sugar ingestion by pregnant women increases neural tube defects in embryos.

140. Sugar can be a factor in asthma.

141. The higher the sugar consumption the more chances of getting irritable bowel syndrome.

142. Sugar could affect central reward systems.

143. Sugar can cause cancer of the rectum.

144. Sugar can cause endometrial cancer.

145. Sugar can cause renal (kidney) cell carcinoma.

146. Sugar can cause liver tumors.

If that doesn't convince you to re-think your sugar intake, I don't think anything else will, aside from the fact that sugar could be the very thing keeping you from reaching your weight loss goals, and causing detrimental effects to your health and mental well-being.

Please feel free to leave comments and questions!

Caitlin Hart Training

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Weight Training VS Cardio

Ever since I was a fairly young child, I worried about weight. Who didn't, in such a media-obsessed, shallow country as the USA? If you're the fat kid in school, your life is it's own circle of hell. I was never a "fat" kid, but I usually got chubby and then grew, chubby and grew. When I was 9 years old, I got my tonsils out. As a result I lost a significant amount of weight, and asked my mother how I could stay skinny forever. Her answer "diet and exercise." So I vowed to exercise from then on.

I didn't actually start trying to exercise until I hit 17 years old. I started running on the treadmill. In my then-opinion, that's how you exercised. I didn't even realize that women could lift weights, I don't think weight training even crossed my mind. I've come a long way since then.

Getting into Personal Training, my view on fitness and exercise has vastly improved. I have studied, researched, and listened to peers in the field. One of the most fascinating discoveries I ever made on my journey to becoming a Personal Trainer, was how useless Cardiovascular exercise was compared to Weight Training in every single fitness category aside from Heart Health. How can this be? It's a similar concept to why long distance running isn't as effective as sprinting. Cardio burns fat and muscle and only burns calories during the actual act.

Weight training builds muscle.
Each pound of Muscle burns 50 calories. Each pound of fat burns 5. Imagine if you build just 10 lbs of muscle, you are burning 500 calories per day MORE than you were before. That means you could sit at your desk at work, and breath, and you will burn 500 extra calories per day, giving you weight loss/fat loss without lowering your caloric intake by 1 calorie. Just think about that the next time you want to hop on the treadmill and do 30 minutes of cardio (typically burns about 150-300 calories).

If you consume a proper recovery drink/meal within 15 minutes of weight training, you significantly increase the amount of muscle you can build and prevent soreness of the muscles. My friend, Jake , recommends a recovery drink called Endurox.

So my recommendation? Weight training is FAR more important than cardio as far as weight loss is concerned. However, cardio is important for the health of your heart, so don't cut it out completely. Just make weight training your primary form of exercise, and supplement cardio on the days you can't weight train. If you read the following article, it has a similar viewpoint to mine, and it includes a sample workout I think is a great idea.


**I hope this article was helpful and informative. Any questions and thoughts on the matter are always appreciated, so leave a comment if you have anything you'd like to add.**

Friday, October 9, 2009

What Is High Fructose Corn Syrup, and Why is it Bad for You?

What is High Fructose Corn Syrup?

High Fructose Corn Syrup "is called isoglucose in the UK and glucose-fructose in Canada – comprises any of a group of corn syrups that has undergone enzymatic processing to convert its glucose into fructose and has then been mixed with pure corn syrup (100% glucose) to produce a desired sweetness. In the United States, HFCS is typically used as a sugar substitute and is ubiquitous in processed foods and beverages, including soft drinks, yogurt, industrial bread, cookies, salad dressing, and tomato soup." (Defined by Wickipedia.org)

So to put it more simply, high fructose corn syrup is derived from corn, through unnatural processes, and used to sweeten anything from most breakfast cereals to most US soft drinks. Why? It's cheaper than sugar. Have you ever tasted the difference between a soft drink sweetened by cane sugar vs. high fructose corn syrup? There is definitely a difference.

Why is high fructose corn syrup bad for us?

I'll start with Dr.Oz's explanation, Dr.Oz has appeared on Oprah many times. Taken directly from Oprah.com, high fructose corn syrup is on Dr.Oz's food hall of fame list. "Although they taste sweet, Dr. Oz says food products that contain high-fructose corn syrup should be avoided. Dr. Oz says the body processes the sugar in high-fructose corn syrup differently than it does old-fashioned cane or beet sugar, which in turn alters your body's natural ability to regulate appetite. "It blocks the ability of a chemical called leptin, which is the way your fat tells your brain it's there," says Dr. Oz. "It's not so much the 150 calories in the soda pop—it's the fact at that same meal you will normally consume an extra hundred calories of food than you would have."

In the Caitlin Hartung school of thought, any unnaturally processed food is not good for you. If you cannot get the food without it having to go through some sort of chemistry experiment first, it's not meant to go through your body. Our bodies are designed to recognize foods that are naturally on this earth, already provided for us. When we put things in our mouth that aren't natural, the body can't recognize what it is, or even necessarily how to properly process it. Americans are the worst culprits in eating processed, chemically altered foods. We're also being overtaken by obesity. Coincidence? I don't think so.

High Fructose Corn Syrup is the cheap alternative to sugar, used by companies trying to save money, not interested in your health. Just one last article I'd like to reference about High Fructose Corn Syrup and I'll let you decide for yourself:

"Recent research from researchers at Johns Hopkins University has uncovered that the human body treats glucose and fructose differently – when consuming glucose, two things happen:
For starters, insulin is released from the pancreas, prompting the body to balance out the glucose levels in the bloodstream. And secondly, glucose is signalling the brain that sufficient energy is available, causing the release of satiety hormones that make you feel full.
By comparison, fructose is not able to enter the brain – so the brain doesn’t respond to your fructose energy intake and in response, your body never gets the signal that your stomach has been filled. You just keep eating and eating and while your stomach expands, you never get the neurological sensation that you’re full. A perfect setup to becoming overweight and obese."(

It's a very interesting/informative article, and I suggest if you have time to click the link above and read it.

I don't want to place all of the blame on High Fructose Corn Syrup, it's not the only ingredient at fault for causing weight gain and diabetes to rise like wildfire in this country. Sugar in any form will cause weight gain if you eat it in excess. I recommend to my clients and to most people to substitute high fructose corn syrup for something natural, however, because it's a BETTER alternative. It's a LESSER evil.

I'd like to follow up with what's wrong with artificial sweeteners in a later blog entry, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


FREE CONSULTATION TO ANYONE WANTING TO CHANGE THEIR LIFE FOR THE BETTER! Simply fill out the form on the side bar that says "FREE Consultation" and I'll contact you to set up a Consultation.

Also for the month of October, we have some amazing specials going on! Email or Call today to find out what those are!


Thank you to those of you who have already referred clients! I hope you enjoy your free training sessions! You earned them!

We're currently working on getting the website kinks worked out. I've got a great web designer who is completely revamping the site and it will hopefully be up and running soon, however I will keep posting my informative articles to this blog. Anyone who wants to do a testimonial, please contact me and I will put you on the website, along with a before and after photo.

I want to remind everyone, that for every friend you refer, you get 50% off a month of training! I want to reward you for keeping my business up and running!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Sprinting VS Long Distance Running

Ever notice the difference between a long distance runner and a sprinter?

Can you guess which one is which?

Long Distance Runner (left) Sprinter (right)
for both pictures.

Notice anything? Perhaps it's hard to tell at first but there are some of the key differences:

1. The sprinter has larger muscles.

2. The sprinter has lower body fat percentage (usually)

3. The long distance runner is more slight in build

4. The long distance runner has much less muscle tone.

If you look up photos of long distance runners vs. sprinters you will notice this trend with most of them.

The way you exercise can determine the shape your body takes. Mainly this is because it determines how your body uses its resources to help you get through these workouts. Long distance runners are doing aerobic exercise, whereas Sprinters and weight trainers are doing anaerobic exercise. The difference is important.

While cardio workouts burn fat and calories over a long period of time, they also tend to burn muscle as well. This is because the body has to find it's largest resource of calories and that tends to be the muscles. Especially after a weight-training workout, one should avoid long distance running, as it negates the process of muscle building. There is nothing wrong with long distance running, in fact it has been proven to promote heart health over sprinting, but if you really want to maintain muscle mass and lose more body fat, sprinting is better choice.

Why does sprinting take off more body fat than long distance running?

Sprinters train with high intensity bursts for short duration periods, burning more sugar, and less fat during the workout. When a high intensity burst of exercise is performed, the body burns more relative amounts of sugar, but burns more fat and calories after the workout. It burns calories anywhere from 16-48 hours after the workout. Low or moderate intensity exercise, such as long distance running, has no after burn effect. You burn what you burn and that is it.
Also important in answering this question is looking at the hormones involved in these two types of exercise. Low to moderate intensity exercise produces a large amount of unopposed cortisol, leading to a catabolic, muscle burning state. High intensity exercise also produces cortisol, but does so along with growth hormone and testosterone, enhancing fat burning, leading to an anabolic, or muscle building state. Therefore the long distance runner has less muscle than the sprinter.

One of the reasons I prefer sprinting is that it takes less time, the workout is harder but not nearly as tedious, and it gets you great results while still maintaining muscle mass. The more muscle mass you have, the higher your metabolism will be. This means that if you can maintain or add muscle to your frame, you will burn more calories than you did before, and lose more weight over time if you continue to take in the same amount of calories you always have. This is why sprinting helps you lose weight more permanently than long distance running. If you had to stop running for a few weeks for some reason, you would still be burning a significant amount of calories by just breathing. However, if you had lost muscle mass, or didn't have much to begin with because you run long distance, you might gain weight over this inactive time, because you aren't burning as many calories.