Category Archives: Q&A

3 Hacks to Drink More Water

Everywhere you turn, there is someone out there telling you how you must drink more water to be healthy. Well, yes, this is true—water is essential to our bodies, and most of us could use more of it each day. But no one ever tells you how to drink more water. Today, we’ll focus on how we can make a habit of consuming a healthy, optimal amount of water each day.

But first, let’s look at some fun facts about drinking water:

  • The average person could live without food for nearly a month, but we could only survive about one week without water—that’s how essential water is to human life. Some of us can’t go a day without coffee, but that’s a different story.
  • Good hydration can prevent arthritis. With plenty of water in your body, there is less friction in your joints, thus less chance of developing arthritis. 
  • Drinking enough water every day can help reduce heart disease and cancer. Water helps flush toxins out of your body, and the fewer toxins that come into contact with your colon, bladder and other organs, the less chance that critical ailments can develop. 
  • Smile! Good hydration can help reduce cavities and tooth decay. Water helps produce saliva, which keeps your mouth and teeth clean.

(Facts pulled from the Culligan Website)

Studies generally agree that you need about 100 ounces of water a day. When I tell people that, they’ll often say:

“That is so much. I have a hard time drinking that much.”


“I struggle to drink that much in one day.”

But now that we’re a little more knowledgeable about our water consumption and we have gotten all of the excuses out in the open, let’s take a look at how we can consume more water throughout our day:


1. Find A Cup That Is Easy to Drink Out Of

This may seem ridiculous, but it’s true. If something is hard to do, human nature will have us avoiding it simply because it’s hard. After all, one of the largest avenues of business in the world is convenience. People will pay a lot of money for things to make their lives easier. For example:

  • The drive thru at a restaurant
  • Smartphones
  • Dishwashers
  • GPS
  • E-books
  • Amazon

Everything listed above exists because someone wanted to make tasks easier and convenient for consumers. So we ought to take a page out of their books and make water consumption easier for ourselves. Find a cup that is easy to drink out of – like what? You’ll want a cup that:

  • Feels good in your hand.
  • Isn’t too big and isn’t too small.
  • Has a drinking hole at the right size

This might sound silly, but everyone has a favorite cup. Why? Because it is easy to drink out of! For example, Nalgene water bottles are super cool looking, real trendy, and virtually unbreakable—but you may have to stop and concentrate when you are drinking from the bottle if you don’t have a splash guard. For me, the hole is too small to drink like a normal water bottle. Therefore, I personally don’t drink from a Nalgene bottle—it’s just not easy to.

I love drinking out of a straw; it makes it easier for me to drink. When I go to a restaurant or get a to-go cup, I always put a straw in because I know it will help me consume more water. The bottom line? Find what is comfortable to hold and easy to drink out of and you will find yourself drinking more. It’s simple.

2. Drink Water At Room Temperature

 Many people feel like you have to drink ice water. On a hot day, cold water is satisfying, for sure, but many times it’s more difficult to drink cold water because of brain freeze or sensitive teeth. I have found that drinking water that is room temperature causes me to drink more. Not sure what it is – no real science here, I just know that it works!

Next time you buy a case of water, put some in the fridge and leave some out on the counter or in the pantry. I guarantee you will drink more of the room temperature stuff.

3. Add Some Lemon

 One of the big complaints from people about drinking more water is that is has no taste and they get tired of it. I get that. Next time you get tired of water and don’t think you can drink another drop, add half of a lemon or lime to it. This gives water a little bit of flavor, and will satisfy that hankering for something different. Lemon water also has some great health benefits as well, like aiding digestion, boosting the immune system, and more.

So if a regular old glass water is getting a little bit boring to you, just squeeze in some lemon to break up the monotonous taste that sometimes comes with it.


These three reasons may seem silly or trivial when you read them, but I dare you to implement one or all into your daily routine. After all, they seem so trivial because they’re dead-simple strategies that you can’t afford not to try. I guarantee you will drink more, and your body will thank you for it!





What is home?

Where is home?

Is home where you grew up?  Is it where you went to elementary school or

High School?

What about college?

Or is it where you have started your family, got married and started having kids?

What about those in the military that have moved 12 times in 20 years?


One Spring day I was at a barn sale here in Cookeville, Tennessee where my wife and my 3 kids make our current home.  As I was looking at all the trinkets and old barn wood cutouts of the state of Tennessee I thought, “man, those are cool, but I am not a “Tennessee Guy”,  I am an Alabama Guy”.

After all, I lived in one home from the time I was 5 years old till I moved out at 18 and went to college at UAB, in Birmingham, Alabama.

My mom still lives in Hueytown and every time I go back, which is about 5-6 times a year, I take 2 of my 3 kids to do all the things I use to do like exploring a creek and walking through the woods and jumping fences we probably shouldn’t.

I drive by the High School Stadium where we went to the playoffs for the 1st time in 18 years, and drive by the old stadium where my  dad coached at before I was born and was still coaching when I went off to college. I have tons of memories that come flooding back to my mind and I love thinking of all of them.

So is that home?

Or is college home? I made some of the best friends in my life in downtown Birmingham in that old apartment.

Or…Is it a combination of those 2 places?

I lived in Georgia for 2 years and made some great friends but really all I did was work.

I then got married to the greatest woman in the world and moved to North Carolina where I worked 100 hour weeks (Literally) and Jackie worked 70 hour weeks and we had no kids and drank Grape Kool Aid, ate Grilled Chicken and Krinkle Cut French Fries almost every night.

We were not there long before we were fired and HAD to move. SO we ended up in a little town in Tennessee called Cookeville.  Many people wrongly pronounce it “Cooks-ville”. Why? I have no idea, but they do.

For the first 6 months we hated it. We had lived in a town of…

  • 1 million people (Birmingham)

  • 5 million people (Atlanta)

  • 900,000 People (Raleigh)

to Cookeville Population 37,000 and 90 minutes from a mall with no more than an Old Navy and a Marshalls.

We were a young married couple making a whopping $25,000 a year plus tips from Jackie waiting table at Cheddars.  We couldn’t find a church, had no friends and lived 4 hours away from all family.  But as time went on we adjusted and started to like and in some ways love little ol’ Cookeville.

We had 3 kids, found a great church, and made friends that will some day carry our caskets down the aisle when we leave this life.

So, lets get back to the question at hand.

What is home?


Home is all of the things above. It’s the memories of playing sports as a kid, the church you were baptized in, the school you went to.

It’s the memories of you, your mom, and your dad at the ball park watching your sister play softball.

It’s seeing your dad with a broken nose because he decided to show me how to dive at the apartment pool. Never mind he is 6ft 6 inches tall.

It’s driving by the field where you spent 5 years of your life practicing football.

But it’s also the hospital where your first child was born., the house where your kids pulled sweet potatoes out of the back yard, and the stadium where you coached your first game as a full time college football coach.  It’s the Gym where you and your wife spent hours training to compete, side by side, in the CrossFit Games.  It’s driving by the house you walked around praying for your friends to get pregnant.  It’s going to the swimming hole where your fearless 3-year-old wants to jump off the cliff with daddy.

So, for me to say that one is home and the other is not would be a travesty.

Home is the combination of all the greatest memories you have made.  It’s where you played sports, learned about Jesus, and met your wife

It’s also the place where you quit your job because you knew you were made for something else. The place where your kids learned to ride their bikes and where you and your wife work through a doctor telling you your kid has a disease that only 3 in every 1 million kids ever get.

Will I ever leave the hills of Tennessee and go back to Sweet Home Alabama or go to another place the Lord will lead us?

I really don’t know. Only God knows.  But I do know that for me and my house this is the best depiction of Home.


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Best Greek Salad Recipe

We have been on a salad kick, due to MealFit Salads. Salads are super nutritious, definitely delicious, and most importantly beautiful. Haha! Here we have put the best Greek Salad Dressing Recipe together, and thought we would share this tasty meal. We hope you enjoy as much as we do.



How To Make A Greek Salad:

  • Lettuce, Spinach, or Mixed Greens
  • Tomato
  • Black Olives
  • Feta Cheese
  • Onions
  • Cucumbers

Next, let’s dive into the dressing. We have came up with a fantastic and easy Greek Salad Dressing for you to make at home from scratch. 



 Greek Salad Dressing Recipe

Ingredients and Directions:

  • ½ cup red wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 drop oregano Essential Oil
  • 1 drop basil Essential Oil
  • 1 tsp salt and pepper mix
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • Combine all of the ingredients in a jar and shake until combine.
  • Store in the fridge for a week.

We hope you enjoyed this read, and check out our recipes.  Meal Fit Salads is in Cookeville, TN. If you are ever in the area, check us out for healthy made from scratch food that will send your taste buds to heaven. 

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Why You Should Take Celiac Disease and Gluten Serious.

Here is an amazing and informing article she has written about Celiac Disease. This disease is part of the reason for the GLUTEN FREE pandemonium that has spread throughout our country.

This article was written by Tonya Retallack a Senior at Upperman High School in Baxter, TN. Tonya is an amazing student who leaves school 3 days a week to come and intern at Mealfit. She does everything from cutting chicken, sweeping floors, to writing articles about nutrition.

She has a bright future ahead of her and I am so glad I have been part of her journey.



My Father also has Celiac so I too know how Gluten and other items effect people.

Enjoy this read from a sharp high school kid.

Celiac Disease

Being the daughter of a parent diagnosed with Celiac Disease; I have experienced firsthand the struggles of this disease. It flipped my family’s world around two years ago when all my dads’ test came back positive. Learning to really read nutrition labels ,grocery shop and cook all over again was a real struggle because we were clueless going into it. I did my research, and over the years I have gathered information to share for the awareness of families that are going through what mine did.


 What is it?

Celiac Disease is one of 80 autoimmune diseases which means it is a disease in which the person’s immune system attacks healthy cells and leads to harming of the body. It is characterized by the damage it causes to the small intestines when wheat, barley, or rye is ingested. Wheat barley and rye all contain gluten which is a combination of two proteins, gliadin and gluten.  Together these two can cause serious irritation to the villi which are small finger like projections in the small intestines that promote absorption of nutrients for the body. If damage is severe in someone with celiac disease, he or she can become malnourished and in some rare cases develop cancer.


Every 1 in 133 healthy Americans of all ages are living with celiac today and a staggering 97% go without a diagnoses. In this disease man and women are both affected, however it is slightly more common in women. Science has proven that some individuals are genetically susceptible to celiac but the exact genetic link is unclear at this time.


What’s next?

It is very important if you are experiencing these symptoms to be tested. An early diagnostic could make a major impact of your quality of health but there are many not so fun steps to take. First is getting the blood test (I got mine done at my local hospital, it came back negative).However if it comes back positive you will need to make a trip to see a gastroenterologist, which is a doctor who deals with the structure, functions, diseases, and pathology of the stomach and intestines.  He will perform an endoscopy to see the damage that already has been done by actually seeing your small intestines without incisions. Sadly, there is no pill or shot that can cure Celiac and there’s no growing out of it. On the bright side however the only thing to keep from having the symptoms is to not eat rye ,wheat, or barley.


Life with Celiac

As bad as it may seem giving up wheat bread and brownies; it could be worse. My dad and other people I have met with celiac says it one of the best things that ever happened to them. They feel better than ever before and a gluten free diet is responsible for that. Even if your test comes back negative there are still millions of reasons to make the switch.

Cite:,,,, Medical-surgical Nursing

As you can see this is a lot of information, and an absolute change to your life. Mealfit is an easy way to make the transition, and you still get to eat the great tasting foods you love. Mealfit focuses on Gluten Free Foods, and Gluten Free Eating Plans. Check Out MealFit Eating Plans to get started on a healthier life.

We hope you enjoyed this read, and check out our recipes. 

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How To Make Grain Free and Gluten Free Bread

We can never seem to get around going without some kind of bread, but we have news for you. We have finally developed a bread that is grain free, gluten free, healthy, and it taste great. This recipe will show you how to make gluten free and grain free bread. We hope you try it out.

Gluten and Grain Free Bread

Plantain Sandwich Bread (Gluten Free, Grain Free)


  • 2 Large green plantains (2 pounds total)
    -Peel and chop
    -Add them to the food processor and spin.plantain bread
  • 4 Tablespoons avocado oil
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 1 Teaspoon baking soda
  • Chicken Breast
  • Tomato
  • Mayonnaise
  • Mixed Greens
  • Salt and Pepper



  • Put in food processor until it makes a batter
  • Spray your waffle iron until with coconut oil
  • Take a 1/3 c Measuring cup and pour in batter
  • Let cook 5-7 min (Depending on your iron)
  • Slice a homegrown tomato
  • Thinly slice some cooked chicken breast
  • Add some mayo to your “bread”
  • Add the tomato
  • Add some salt and pepper
  • Add some spring mix
  • Add your chicken

    Top with the bread, slice and enjoy!!


Yes! It’s as good as it looks! Get healthy with this healthy recipe. Try it and let us know what you think.

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Grain Free Gluten Free bread

Celiac  Disease

Whole 30

You are what you eat, and no one wants to be a $1 menu.

We have all heard the stories about eating fast food/eating out, and we are here to tell you it is true. More and more people are eating out more and more, and it’s not good for your body.  You are what you eat, and no one wants to be a $1 menu. It used to be a luxury, but is becoming the new norm, because of convenience and how cheap it is. I mean sure going thru a McDonald’s drive thru takes 5 minutes, and the $1 menu takes less out of your pocket than eating healthy. So you think! We’ll touch on the time and price later.


For now, I want you to really think about what it is doing to your body. It effects everything, and you are killing yourself. In many cases the food is highly processed and contains large amounts of carbohydrates, added sugar, unhealthy fats, preservatives, and salt. If you really look at the details of what those things can do to you, you won’t be happy, because your life will be shorter. All those carbs turn into sugar and constantly spike your blood sugar, which can lead to Diabetes 2. Added sugars have no nutritional value but are high in calories. According to the American Heart Association, most Americans take in twice as much sugar as is recommended for optimal health. All those extra calories add up to extra weight, which is a contributing factor for getting heart disease and being obese. Obesity is associated with an increase in respiratory problems as well. Too much sodium causes your body to retain water, making you feel bloated, puffy, and looking larger than you are. But that’s the least of the damage overly salted foods can do. Sodium also can contribute to existing high blood pressure or enlarged heart muscle.


What about the outside of your body that can be seen and your mental health? First, fast food and eating out is known to take your energy. It literally drains you, and depression has also been linked to it. In a Public Health Nutrition journal a study determined that people who eat out are 51 percent more likely to develop depression than those who eat little to no fast food.  On top of that, fast food and eating out feeds skin issues. Greasy fattening fried foods and foods high in carbs cause acne and oily skin.

If you still aren’t making the promise to stop eating out a lot, please look at the list below for other reasons to stop eating out.

  1. It’s Expensive: Sure, you wanted the dollar menu, but you changed your mind when you go there, and fast food keeps going up. You can’t leave without spending at least $5-$12. If you times that by 30 days you are spending $150-$360 on Food that doesn’t even count your trip to the grocery store. Let’s not forget that is just lunch, one meal a day. A sit down restaurant is even more expensive. Eating healthy can be cheap, if you buy in quantities to last you.
  1. You Don’t Know What’s Gone Into It
  2. The Novelty Wears Off: If you are constantly going to restaurants and other establishments, then how do you mark a special occasion? 


  1. You Don’t Learn Anything:By Cooking you are learning and perfecting a skill, that looks great when dating, impressing “a could be” business partner, or comforting your spouse.


  1. It’s Not Convenient, It’s Time Consuming: You think going to the drive thru is quick, but you have to drive there, drive back, order, and use gas to get there. If you actually go to a sit down restaurant, you are waiting for them to cook it, waiting on the bill, and more. Cooking at home and preparing your meals are much healthier and take less time.


We hope you choose to eat out less and eat more at home, and if you do go out check out healthy places for you and your body. A good example is MealFit Salads in Cookeville, TN.   A serve yourself salad bar full of fresh healthy tasty options. We even have local, farm-fresh produce on the salad bar whenever it’s available. 

Remember you are what you eat, and no one wants to be a $1 menu. 

Food By MealFit Salads!

7 Easy and Healthy Back To School Snacks

7 Healthy Back To School Snacks You Can Buy


As the parent who does most of the grocery shopping and the one who creates the menu every week for MealFit and for our own home I am always the one creating the grocery list and it is always changing. We believe in feeding our kids a variety of different things so they will experience different tastes and expose their pallet to new flavors and seasonings.


Snacks, however, is a different deal. I get asked all the time, actually every week,


“What is a good snack to feed my kids that is healthy?” 



I want to have something for them that they can literally grab and get that I know is not bad for them. Even though the menu and grocery list are constantly changing from week to week there are several mainstays that we get every week at the grocery store and they mostly revolve around snacks.



#1 Hand Fruit 

What is that? It is any fruit that the kids can go by the fridge and grab and eat. We gauge how much they are eating and we try to get the lower sugar fruits such as strawberries, black berries, grapes, & raspberries. We also get Cuties and bananas, Yes, I know bananas have a lot of sugar, but we monitor how many they have.



#2 Cheese Stick 

Some people avoid dairy, we avoid milk but not cheese. This is a good source of protein and fat, which seems to be hard to find with kids snacks. We try to stay away from the low fat kind. Cheese sticks are even better when your kids are old enough to open them themselves and great to carry and pack in a lunch as well.



#3 Nut butter (Peanut, Almond, Sun Butter) 

We are peanut butter people, (Jif natural).  Some people have peanut allergies so they have to get almond butter or even sun butter. They give sun butter at Johnna’s (my 6 year old) school because it is the safest when it comes to the allergy stuff..  Sun butter (comes from sunflower seeds) is one that I do not like. My daughter likes it though and that’s what matters.



#4 Eggs 

Our family of 4 goes through almost 5 dozen eggs a week. With breakfast and snacks we keep Aldi in business. (Anyone in Cookeville who has eggs I will take them). Between the 4 of us we eat 9 every morning.  We also hard-boil them for snacks for the kids. They love to go in and just grab one and eat it.  I used to hard boil them, take out the yolk and add peanut butter to them and crush them.


#5 Greek Yogurt 

The good thing about this snack is it is another good source of fat and protein. The only bad thing about this is they are higher in sugar. We like the Chobani brand because it has the least amount of sugar that we can find. Kids can get in the fridge and rip it open and go. Another good thing to do with this is to freeze it.  Once it is frozen, Throw it in the microwave for 10-12 seconds and you have a “healthier” Popsicle. Our kids like this for dessert.



#6 Emergen-C 

We love this stuff. Our kids drink this everyday at some point either at breakfast or at snack.  We do not do juice (too much sugar) or Kool-aid (again, too much sugar) so this serves as our “Sweet” Treat for the kids. It also has 1000MG of Vitamin C per package so it helps benefit their immune systems especially during the winter months.



#7 Pepperoni

This is the newest addition to our weekly shopping trip. To be honest, I am not sure how we go into the routine of getting this, but when we did we noticed our kids eating more and more of it.  The good qualities are that it has protein and fat.  The bad qualities are that it is not”natural” meat. It is processed and as much as we try to stay away from the processed stuff we are human and we love convenience.


I hope this helps you on your journey to create healthy little ones. I would love to hear what all you are doing with your kids snack time treats.


QUESTION: What is your favorite Kids snack and WHY?


Leave your answers in the comments below.

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Why Screen Time Is Damaging Your Child


Ipads, Tablets, Iphones, Androids, Pokemon Go, TV, and any other thing linked to a screen may not be the best for your child. The ability to communicate, concentrate, show attention, conduct social skills  and other abilities are being harmed.

We have all been witness to the below scenarios in public and some of us have even done them ourselves.

  1. Busy parents trying to get their kids to calm down in the grocery store. What do they do? They shove their phone in their face, and the kid automatically calms down.


  1. On the phone with someone in the car, and the children are in the back asking 47 questions or fighting with a sibling. You throw the kid proof Ipad in the back, and all is quiet for your telephone call.


  1. Go over to a friend’s house on a beautiful day. You walk in the house, and the kids are glued to the … (TV, Computer, Cell phone or tablets)


If you have not witnessed this or you are not guilty of this, then you can stop reading this article now……


Yes, you are guilty of this in some way. I know, I know you do a better job at this than all your friends do. I said the same thing so that is why I am writing this. I wanted to know what the experts are saying about all the screens our kids are consuming mostly in the name of “Education”.

So, I did some research and found some shocking things that have quiet frankly scared me, and we are going to make some changes around the house.

To start off a 2010 Study says “The average 8- to 10-year-old spends nearly eight hours a day with a variety of different media, and older children and teenagers spend more than 11 hours per day.” That was 6 years ago. Imagine what the numbers are now with all the advancement and spread of technology.



Why do we need to keep our kids off the screens?

  1. Our FOCUS Is Going Down The TUBES.

Our digital lifestyles, which include frequent multitasking, may be harming our ability to remain focused.

            Media multitasking is very common among children and adults, even though there is ongoing concern over how it affects our abilities to pay attention and avoid distraction.

            A 2010 study of 8- to 18-year-olds found that young people were engaging in media multitasking for 29 percent of their overall media use, fitting over 10 hours of media use into 7.5 hours of their days.

Read that again….10 hours of media in 7.5 hours. Seriously? That is huge.

 Another study of 263 middle school, high school, and university students found that students studied for fewer than six minutes before switching to another technological distraction, such as texting or social media

 Multitasking may decrease productivity because users take time to reorient after a transition to a different activity and become mentally fatigued from the effort, which slows their rate of work.


  1. Hurting Relationships In The Home

A Source of Tension for Parents and Children

For example, screens cause a source of tension for parents and children.+ In an international online survey of 6,117  8- to 13-year-olds and their parents, 54% of children felt that their parents checked their devices too often, and 32% of children felt unimportant when their parents were distracted by their phones.

Another study observed 55 guardians eating with young children in fast food restaurants and found that 40 of the guardians used devices during their meals (Radesky, et al., 2014). The researchers examined how absorbed guardians were with their devices,  by the frequency of their use as well as their children’s responses to their use. Some children were able to entertain themselves, but others tried for attention more urgently.

Parents who were highly absorbed in their devices tended to be more harsh when their children asked for attention and their misbehavior.


  1. Its Killing Our Kids Social Skills

I find that it is more of the exception than the rule, if a kid makes eye contact or shakes hands properly.

First, interacting with others through screens leaves out many social cues humans receive in person. For example, a teen who receives a text from a friend about his or her day will miss out on visual cues (eye contact or facial expressions), auditory cues (tone of voice), and tactile cues (touch) (Konrath, 2012).

Empathy may develop in the context of the many cues we get during face to-face communication. Additionally, online environments that allow anonymity may make it easier for individuals to ignore others’ feelings, and thus be more aggressive or insensitive than they would be in person.

The brains of the identified Internet addicts within several studies resembled those of substance abusers and pathological gamblers.


Findings from a 2014 study support the importance of face-to face time.

After 11- and 12-year-olds spent five media-free days at an outdoor educational camp, their recognition of nonverbal emotion cues improved significantly more than those of their peers who attended school and used media as usual (Uhls et al.,2014).

The ability to pick up on nonverbal cues is important for maintaining healthy social interactions.

Many researchers have noted that narcissism seems to be increasing, while empathic traits have been on the decline, and have pointed to social media as a driver for that change (Konrath, 2012).

How do we fix it?

  1. Make Disconnect Time A Priority

Establish media-free times (e.g., mealtimes, one hour before bedtime) and/or zones (e.g., bedrooms, cars) to restore some balance as well as support face-to-face conversation, healthy sleep, and safe driving. Some users also benefit from extended periods of unplugging, sometimes called a “digital detox”. For example, a weekend day that eliminates media.


  1. Set An Example

We adults are role models. It would be wise for us to be conscious of own own media habits, especially given how we want our children to engage with technology and media. If a child observes a parent being frequently distracted by his phone, she or he may be more apt to internalize that behavior.   


Parents can showcase their own media balance by thoughtfully choosing when and how to engage with media. This sets an example as well as establishes a social norm.

This as much an article to myself as it was to you the reader.  Kind of like a preacher who preaches about issues he is dealing with outside the pulpit. I write this to help myself be more accountable personally.

Would you like to try a FREE Week of MealFit?

 (All of the research that was done on these topics can be found in these links)



Why You Need To Stop Buying Shredded Cheese

Why You Need To Stop Buying Shredded Cheese…

I made a recipe last week from a renowned chef and it called for shredded cheese. In the instructions, it was very specific about grating the cheese on a cheese grater and not using shredded cheese from a bag. Someone asked me why I did that, and I didn’t really know. So I started doing some research and this is what I came up with.


shredded cheese
Why You Should Stop Buying Shredded Cheese?

What is the difference in shredded cheese and block cheese?

The main difference is the ingredients.

There are 2 added ingredients in shredded cheese that are not in block cheese.


#1 Cellulose Powder.

Cellulose is a product that comes from cotton and wood pulp….wood pulp… really?

It has become popular in recent years because it has no calorie content and is used in some foods to thicken like ice cream. Companies also add it to diet foods to reduce the volume of food that is packaged. Cellulose adds volume to foods, which gives the appearance of there being more food in a package than there actually is.

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The main reason it is in cheese is to prevent it from sticking together. Cellulose is an anti-caking agent. Cellulose has the ability to absorb moisture and coat ingredients in a fine powder making it the ingredient of choice for anti-caking applications. Shredded and grated cheeses, spice mixes, and powdered drink mixes are just a few of the many food items that take advantage of cellulose as an anti-caking agent.


So why do companies love Cellulose (AKA wood pulp) in food products?

  1. It stabilizes food
  2. Decreases fat
  3. Adds fake fiber
  4. It’s cheap


#2 Potato Starch

This is the other additive that is found in shredded cheese that is not in block cheese. Potato starch is a starch that is extracted from potatoes. The potatoes are crushed and then the starch grains are released from the destroyed cells. The starch is then washed out and dried to powder. Source

Potato Starch

Potato starch is used in wallpaper adhesive and in the process of making paper bags. It is used in shredded cheese to prevent caking and reduce sweating. Wall paper, paper bags, cheese that my family eats…Good deal.


If you are watching your carb intake you may want to shy away from some of these products that are infused with potato starch, seeing that is has 10 grams of carbs per table spoon.

Assignment #9 -- Cutlery






Why we buy shredded cheese?

  1. Convenience: It is a touch easier to buy a bag of shredded cheese and just pull it out and use what you need than it is to shred a block of cheese and use it. I get it because I do it too. But it is worth a little bit more trouble to avoid the extra additives and fillers that go into the processing of shredded cheese.

Advantages over block cheese:

  • No extra utensil to wash. (You have a dishwasher, correct?)
  • No extra time taken to grate it. (About 90 seconds: I know how valuable those 90 seconds are, but I believe you can spare 90 seconds out of your day to keep your 3 year old from eating wood chips.)
  • No sticking together. (Grate it when you need it instead of all at the same time to keep it from sticking as much when stored.)


Hope this sheds some light on why its better to buy block cheese over bagged cheese.

Here are 2 more sources for my info
Source 1
Source 2
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Does knowing this make you want to buy block cheese from now on?


What it Takes to TRULY become a Garage Gym Athlete

Welcome to the three-part series on becoming a Garage Gym Athlete!!


This is Part 3 of a 3-part series:

It is time to become a switch flipper, a decision maker and a full fledged Garage Gym Athlete. How do we do that?


What does that word mean to you?

What have your persevered?

To most, perseverance is something  that is thrust upon you. You continue on, despite a difficult time because you have no other choice. There is no doubt you have persevered something, but what about intentionally practicing perseverance?

What if you were to treat perseverance as a skill?

You can train your perseverance, it can be honed and it can get stronger, just as if you were to train a muscle. Just as muscles will atrophy without proper use, so will your willpower, or your perseverance.


To be a determined person is nothing without the right behavior. Without acting in a certain way, your will will not be tested. Luckily, for us, working out is an excellent test of your willpower, especially if you are alone in a garage. It can be small pushes here and there. Going for those two extra reps, two more seconds, and two more minutes all test your will.

You may workout regularly, but do you test your will in the process?

Here are TWO ways you can practice perseverance and willpower and truly become a Garage Gym Athlete!

Two Ways to Increase your Willpower

1.) Working out – The APA (American Psychological Association) says, while scientists are not 100% certain on the “why”, they do know that working out leads to similar changes in the brain as mediation, especially the prefrontal cortex. Regular exercise – both intense training and mindful exercise like yoga — also makes the body and brain more resilient to stress, which is a great boost to willpower. The scientists don’t know why…but if I brought them to my garage for a training session they would understand why exercise can test willpower (and improve it) in a significant manner.


2.) Doing What You Don’t Want to Do – This one is not backed by science, rather from experience. I try to do one thing that pushes me mentally each day, something I don’t want to do. For me, it’s normally a cold shower. Some mornings after working out in the cold I just don’t want to take a cold shower. I’ll even start with hot and be like…man I really just don’t want to make this water cold. Anytime I feel like I really don’t want to, it’s almost as if I’ve trained my hand to adjust the knob before I can finish the thought. Doing this day after day has increased my ability to do things I just don’t want to do. It’s made me better.

It’s not the short term PRs, that ONE morning you woke up early or that ONE healthy meal that will make you successful at being a Garage Gym Athlete.

You have to keep after it, day after day, and year after year. Only then, when you learn how to grind for the long haul, will you see every bit of success you were looking for!


And that’s what it takes to be a Garage Gym Athlete!!

About the Author: Jerred Moon

Jerred is a Strength and Conditioning Coach and creator of End of Three Fitness which specializes in simple, effective barbell-centric fitness for the other guy. He is also the author of “The Garage Gym Athlete” which will be released on May 2. To learn more about Garage Gym Athlete, you can go here.