Don’t Sweat the Nitrates

A few weeks ago I had a client tell me they were avoiding all convenient and portable lunch meats because of the rumor that added nitrates in some of these meats cause cancer. Being such a bold statement, this prompted me to look into the subject a little further. Now before I talk any further, I’d like to point out that I’m not talking about cheap name brand bologna; I’m referring to fresh turkey, roast beef, chicken, etc. that you purchase from your local butcher.
So what are nitrates? Nitrates are compounds consisting of nitrogen and oxygen atoms. They are frequently added to processed and cured meats to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria, along with maintaining color and freshness. Once you consume nitrates, they are quickly converted to nitrites by the bacteria in the mouth or other enzymes in the body. From nitrites, one of two things is going happen: nitrites will convert to either nitric oxide (NO) or nitrosamines, which is a known carcinogen. Nitric oxide is a good thing nitrosamines are a bad thing. Nitric oxide is a molecule that enhances cellular communication (not cell phones, FYI) throughout the body’s seemingly infinite amount of cells. Among other benefits, nitric oxide supplementation has been shown to improve cognitive function, improve sleep, improve circulation (it’s a vasodilator), assist in rigorous physical activity (some bodybuilders use this to achieve that ever desired “pump”) reduce inflammation, and many more.
What determines which path these nitrites will take? The answer is heat. Exposing nitrates to extremely high heat will cause a chemical reaction to occur that turns nitrites into nitrosamines, which contain documented cancer causing properties. So the main point here would be to not cook your lunch meat to the point that it’s black and crispy (which I doubt you’re cooking your lunch meat to begin with). If you must cook bacon, using a lower temperature and cooking for longer duration is supposed to limit the amount of nitrosamines created, as well as not cooking the meat until it is black and crispy.
Nitrate regulation has increased over the last decade as well. The amount of nitrates put into processed meats has decreased drastically from what it once used to be due to this regulation. On a side note, approximately 80% of your dietary nitrates come from vegetables. That’s right, vegetables! So by saying nitrates are bad for you then by that logic vegetables would be bad for you, which we all know isn’t true.
So what’s the bottom line? Don’t sweat the nitrates. The more you focus on trivial matters such as this you prolong focusing on what’s actually important in life. If lunch meat keeps you on track, then by all means use it. Forcing yourself to stay up an hour late every night to cook chicken, beef, or fish when it’s something you really don’t want to eat for lunch the next day anyway will set you up for failure. You need to enjoy what you eat in order to make a positive lifestyle change.

You can Make Breakfast for the Week in less than 5 minutes!

5 Breakfasts in 5 Minutes

5 Breakfasts in 5 Minutes



I just made breakfast for the entire work week in less than 5 minutes and so can you.

A few weeks ago I saw posts on facebook for cold oatmeal that you made in the fridge over night.  This is something I had done years ago as it is a great way to have fast, easy meals ready to go when you get up in the morning.  The problem with what I was seeing on facebook is that most of the suggested recipes were overloaded in carbs and sugar.

So I thought why not share some really easy, low sugar and high protein ways to do this.

So here you go.

Here is the recipe:

1/2 Cup of oatmeal, I used the quick oat variety and you can use the steal cut, slow cook but personally I see NO benefit in doing so

2 scoops of protein powder, I like the UMP from Beverly International

Cinnamon, the pure ground not sugar added kind

Mix dry ingredients in your bowls.  Now, add water to one of the bowls and place in the fridge.  This is your breakfast for tomorrow.  Tomorrow night, grab the next bowl, add water…you get the idea.

Calories 370

Carbs about 30 grams

Protein about 40 grams

Fat about 2 grams

Want to get real crazy?  Add some fresh berries, nuts, or even flax seed.



This article is the courtesy of Raymond M. Binkowski former fat guy, author of “Eat by Color”, personal trainer and owner of FitWorkz.  Its intent is to be shared.  If sharing the previous following statement MUST be included any time this article is reproduced in part or entirety.  So please feel free to share, you just might change a life! * * Twitter @eatbycolor * *



Tips to Boost Your Immune System Via Your Digestive System!

A Healthy Digestive Track and your Immune System!
Did you know that 80% of your immune system is affected by your GI’s (think digestive system) health?  Well it is and a healthy digestive system means a strong immune system.  Immune system health is important to fight off illness and disease.  Especially during the cold and flu seasons!  During times of illness anti-biotics often play a role in restoring health.  Unfortunately anti-biotics can kill both good and bad bacteria.

Good Bacteria?  You bet.  Like the kinds found in your digestive system assisting with the complete digestion and absorption of the food you eat.  The good bacteria’s ensure that your digestive system is healthy, which means your immune system is healthy.

How can the good bacteria be increased?

Two ways…..Pre-biotics and Pro-biotics.

Pre-Biotics:  Ferment in the stomach to produce good bacteria.  Great sources are yogurt and believe it or not whey protein.

Pro-Biotics:  Pro-Biotics differ from the Pre-Biotics because they will survive stomach acid and move further down the digestive track.  Pro-Biotics can be found refrigerated at quality health food stores and most chiropractic offices.   Real Pro-Biotics will have 10^9 (1 billion or 10 billion) bacteria.  The products do have a shelf life and MUST be refrigerated, check both.

Try using both Pre (Yogurt…Greek Yogurt is high in protein as well) and Pro-Biotics (from health food store):

Pre-Biotics + Pro-Biotics = Synbiotics

Zinc, Vitamin C, Glutamine (it’s the most abundant amino acid in the body and under stress the immune system can use extra   glutamine, and rest can all help with a healthy immune system as well.

Other things that can help are washing your hands often, don’t rub your eyes, keep your hands out of your mouth and fingers out of your nose, and as temp drops and the heat kicks on a humidifier is not a bad idea.

This article is intended for informational purposes only.  It is not intended to treat or cure disease of any type.  Consult a physician with questions and before trying on your own.

 *This article is the property of and Ergoteknix Inc.  Feel free to share but make sure you include and!

Pumpkin Pie Protein Shake

A Fall Favorite without the calories, sugar, and fat!  Plus it is high in protein!


Pumpkin Pie Shake



4 Scoops of Beverly International UMP

12 oz of Almond Milk

½ Can of Pumpkin (NOT the pumpkin pie filling that is loaded with sugar)


2-3 tsp Cinnamon or to taste

1-2 tsp Nut Meg, All Spice or Pumpkin Spice or to taste






Approximate Nutrition Facts per Serving

Makes about three servings.

Calories 300

Protein 27

Carbs 12

Fat 2


Wrap it LOW CVARB with Lettuce…and Eat by Color favorite!



So some of you have asked for recipes for the lettuce wrap picture we posted on Facebook.


Why lettuce wraps?  Well lettuce is a great replacement for bread or a higher carb option in what we typically call a sandwich.  Lettuce makes it EASY to create Eat by Color meals.  Now a little history why the bread/fajita for sandwich/wrap?  Most likely because it made food more portable and with the bread providing a vehicle to move typically some type of meat from plate to mouth.

Where does sandwich come from?  Click her to find out.


A few options for the lettuce wrap.  The first is mine.  The second a little more on the racy edgy side as I am including a Rachel Rey recipe.  There are no rules.  Feel free to make recipes your own using foods and ingredients that you have in your house.   Simple means it will fit your lifestyle and you will be successful.


Grilled Chicken Lettuce Wraps

1 lbs of chicken breast

4 fresh peppers, go with red, yellow, green, and orange

Fresh Portabella Mushrooms


1 Pack of Fajita Seasoning



Grill chicken and peppers.  Yes grill the peppers just wash them and put the right on the grill.  Once the chicken is done remove along with the peppers.  Slice the chicken, onion, and peppers into strips.  Combine peppers, chicken, onion, and mushrooms in sauce pan with fajita seasoning (follow fajita instructions) and sauté.

Serve on lettuce instead of tortillas.

Feel free to get crazy.  If you have something at home add it.  There are no rules!  Literally as I write this I have a jar of Jalapeno green salsa and yes this would be going on my fajitas.

This is the one that was not posted on our Facebook page but on a friends.



The Sloppy Joe

Brown lean ground beef

Drain fat, and add your favorite Sloppy Joe mix (be weary as some have a ton of carbs and sugar)

Follow directions on Sloppy Joe mix


Or you can do the following that is from  Personally I am not a fan of recipes like this that require ingredients that I may not always have readily available.  Remember, success with health, wellness, and weight loss requires the process to fit YOUR lifestyle….fancy pants ingredients don’t fit mine.   Read that again, if you are going to be successful with health, wellness, and weight loss the plan you follow has to be easy and fit your lifestyle.

Here is the recipe as it appears here



1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan
1 1/4 pounds ground beef sirloin
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons to 1 tablespoon steak seasoning blend, such as McCormick brand Montreal


1 medium onion, chopped
1 small red bell pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 cups tomato sauce
2 tablespoons tomato paste
4 crusty rolls, split, toasted, and lightly buttered
Garnish: sliced ripe tomatoes, pickles, Deviled Potato Salad, recipe follows


Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add oil and meat to the pan. Spread the meat around the pan and begin to break it up. Combine brown sugar and steak seasoning. Add sugar and spice mixture to the skillet and combine. When the meat has browned, add onion and red peppers to the skillet. Reduce heat to medium and cook onions, peppers, red wine vinegar and Worcestershire sauce with meat for 5 minutes. Add tomato sauce and paste to pan. Stir to combine. Reduce heat to simmer and cook Sloppy Joe mixture 5 minutes longer. Using a large spoon or ice cream scoop, pile Sloppy Joe meat onto lettuce.