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January 2022
January 19, 2022 | Issue #141
Are You Getting Enough Protein? Here's What the Science Says
Lauren has written a few articles for Tonal.com. We are printing a few excerpts from both articles and hope you follow the links to the full article below at the end:

"While the nutrition industry tends to toggle between carbohydrates and fats as the dietary “villain” of the moment, protein generally remains a nutritional hero. (Spoiler: You need all three for a healthy, balanced diet). But if your goal is to build or maintain muscle, power, strength, or performance, you definitely want to ensure an adequate protein intake each day. Eating one large portion of chicken at dinner won’t cut it—your muscles require protein at least four times each day to recover and rebuild. To help you do that, here’s what the research and science suggest about optimal protein intake.

Any type of rigorous exercise—and specifically strength training—induces a continuous breakdown of muscle fibers. That’s actually how we build and grow the muscle tissue: Lifting creates microtears in the muscle fibers and causes the subsequent rebuilding of those fibers for lean body mass maintenance or achieving muscle and strength gains. Our bodies turn to protein—specifically amino acids which are the building blocks of protein—for this muscle growth and tissue repair..."

For more information regarding protein, or to read Lauren's full article on Tonal.com, click HERE.
Should Athletes Follow the Trend Toward Plant-Based Eating?
"From fancy new imitation meats in the grocery store to vegetarian-friendly options at your favorite restaurant, it seems like everywhere you turn, plant-based eating is the new trend du jour. And for good reason: The health benefits of plant-based eating include reduced risk of heart diseasediabetes, and some cancers, not to mention the environmental, economical, and ethical benefits to consider as well.

Regardless of your reason for being interested in eating more plants, you may be wondering if you can maintain strength or build muscle by eating a plant-based or mostly vegetarian diet as an athlete. The short answer is yes..."

For more information regarding plant-based eating, or to read Lauren's full article on Tonal.com, click HERE.
Protein Powered Recipes
Bison Meatballs
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 12 meatballs
Courtesy of: slowthecookdown.com

  • 21 ounces ground bison (600g)
  • ¼ cup fine breadcrumbs (4 tablespoons)
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • oil for frying

  • Add all of the ingredients to a large bowl (apart from the oil).
  • Mix the ingredients together using your hands so that everything is well incorporated.
  • Take portions of the mixture and roll into balls. I used around 3 tablespoons per meatball. Place on a tin lined with parchment.
To pan fry
  • Add a tablespoon of oil to a large skillet and heat on a medium high heat.
  • Once hot, add the meatballs, taking care not to overcrowd the pan. Cook on all sides until browned and cooked through - about 10-15 minutes.
To oven bake
  • Pre heat the oven to 400F / 200c.
  • Place the meatballs into the oven on a baking sheet lined with parchment and cook for 20-25 minutes until browned and cooked through.

  • Use the meat straight out of the fridge when you mix the ingredients. It's better to form the balls while the meat is still cold. If you need to, pop the mixture back in the fridge for 10 or 15 minutes before rolling.
  • Make sure that the ingredients are really well combined before rolling into balls. The best way is to get your hands in and give everything a good knead.
  • Don't roll the meatballs too tightly or they can become tough and chewy. Just lightly roll and shape them with your hands without applying too much pressure.
Lauren's Go-To Post-Workout Recovery Smoothie
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1 smoothie

  • 1 scoop Mend Regenerate (use code NutritionEnergy10 for 10% off your entire order)
  • 1/2 cup frozen cauliflower
  • ~1 cup fresh or frozen berries
  • top with 1/2 cup granola
  • water, milk, or non-dairy milk to desired consistency (~1/2-1 cup)

  • Add all of the ingredients (except the granola) to a blender, starting with 1/2 liquid. Process until smooth, adding additional liquid for desired consistency.
  • Pour into a glass or bowl, top with granola (or other toppings, like more fruit, shaved coconut, or whatever else you like), and enjoy!
Four Bean Chili
Total Time: 95 minutes
Servings: 12
Courtesy of: Tiffani Thiessan

  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 1/4 cup olive oil 
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper 
  • 4 ounces tomato paste (about 1 tube) 
  • 1/4 cup chili powder 
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle powder 
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander 
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin 
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped 
  • 6 cups vegetable broth 
  • One 28-ounce can diced tomatoes 
  • 2 cups canned (drained) or frozen corn 
  • One 15-ounce can black beans 
  • One 15-ounce can garbanzo beans 
  • One 15-ounce can kidney beans 
  • One 15-ounce can pinto beans 
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
Toppings Bar (optional garnishes):
  • Sour cream or Greek yogurt
  • Shredded Cheddar
  • Cooked chopped bacon
  • Chopped yellow onions
  • Chopped chives
  • Sliced jalapenos
  • Corn chips, such as Fritos
  • Tortilla chips

  1. For the chili: In a Dutch oven over medium heat, cook the onions with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper until the onions are soft, about 3 minutes. Mix in the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil along with the tomato paste, chili powder, chipotle powder, coriander, cumin, cayenne and garlic. Cook to toast the spices and tomato paste, 1 to 2 minutes. Then add the vegetable broth, tomatoes, corn, black beans, garbanzo beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, Worcestershire and 1 tablespoon salt. Bring to a simmer and cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
  2. Serve the chili with the toppings bar.
Cook’s Note
This recipe also works well with ground turkey or beef. Simply brown 2 1/2 pounds of ground meat before adding the onions.
A Note From Lauren
In the spirit of the New Year and our determination in helping you continue working towards your nutritional and life goals, I wanted to touch on Nutrition Energy's philosophy of teaching, practicing, and educating nutrition to our clients.  We believe in 3 pillars essential for sustainable results:  nutrition education, behavior change, and practical change. 

In order to make successful nutritional changes, you first need to understand more about the food you eat and the affects of nutrition on your body. We use food logs, models, and lab results as tools to help guide and tailor our recommendations specifically to you and your needs. Balancing education with us in office and by yourself at home using educational materials, such as handouts, is essential for learning and reinforcement. 

Second, in order to make lasting change, undesirable behaviors need to be recognized and modified. Behavior change can often be the trickiest to change, as you need to help yourself create new patterns/habits to override new ones. The good news is that with guidance, time, and persistence this can be done-and then the new habits will be as easy to follow as the old ones had been. This is where encouragement and support from a team of friends, family, and nutrition professionals can make a big impact.

And lastly, in order for change to be 'easier' - it needs to be practical. Now, practicality can be different for each person and it doesn't happen overnight. For example, if you haven't been exercising, a practical change would be to start exercising 2 days a week - not 6. Or if you eat takeout 7 days a week, a practical change would be to make home-made meals 2 days a week. Once you are successful with the first steps, then you can move on and add more goals.

For any help or guidance with your nutritional needs - feel free to reach out to us at our office, or on Twitter @NutritionEnergy, Instagram @NutritionEnergy and @NutritionEnergy_Fuels, or Facebook!

Lauren Antonucci
Nutrition Energy