Exercise & Nutrition

VO2 Max Testing

A healthy nutrition and exercise regimen are equally important in achieving a healthy lifestyle. Many people only consider “dieting” and exercising when they want to lose weight. In addition to maintaining a healthy weight, those who exercise regularly and eat a healthy diet enjoy many health benefits. 

Benefits Of Healthy Nutrition And Regular Exercise

Dr. Frank Melo and his staff strongly believe that regular exercise and a healthy balanced nutrition contribute to disease prevention and the body’s ability to respond optimally during times of illness. 

Decreasing the Risk of Heart Disease

  • Studies have shown that those who exercise regularly and follow a healthy nutrition plan have fewer heart problems. 

Elevated Mood

  • A healthy nutrition plan and regular exercise promote relaxation and contentment. When an individual is hungry, the body is signaling its desire for nutrients. 

Improved Energy Levels

  • Good nutrition and exercise also contribute to a high energy level for several reasons. 

Improvement in Sleep

  • Another benefit of exercise is the improved quality of sleep. A good night’s sleep is important for concentration and memory, as well as for renewing energy levels. 

Simple-Start Nutrition Tips

A key to staying committed is planning your meals and snacks. Stock your fridge and pantry with lots of good, healthy, nutritious food that complements your preferences.  Eat three nutritious meals a day and healthy snacks in between. 

Skin less poultry, fish, and beans instead of red meat and cheese
Sodas, alcohol and commercial juices 
Nutrient-rich fruits & vegetables (8-10 servings daily) with skins- fiber Sugar and artificial sweeteners (Stevia is allowed) 
Brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa (these grains only) Carbohydrates such as bread, rice, pasta, and potato chips and fries
Healthy fats (olive oil, avocados, nuts). Canola oil when bakingSaturated fats: cream, butter, lard, bacon fat and palm oil.
Almond or rice milk instead of cows milkTrans fats: shortening, stick margarines, fried and commercial baked goods, such as crackers, cookies and cakes.
Water instead of soda, sports drinks or coffee Gluten (barley, rye, wheat, spelt kamut) 
Herbal teas and green teas Sodium, artificial coloring, preservatives

Moving Towards A Healthy Lifestyle

Healthy eating and regular exercise are important steps to leading a healthy life. Those who have not exercised in a long time should start out slowly to avoid injury. If there are any underlying health conditions, a doctor should be consulted in order to develop an appropriate nutrition and exercise plan. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Melo at Solstice.

Physical Activity, Exercise And Fitness – What’s In The Name?

  • Physical Activity. A bodily movement that is produced by the contraction of skeletal muscle and that substantially increases energy expenditure.
  • Exercise. A type of physical activity that is defined as planned, structured, and repetitive bodily movement done to improve or maintain one or more components of physical fitness
  • Physical Fitness. Is the body’s ability to perform physical activity effectively and efficiently- composed of cardiorespiratory endurance, body composition, flexibility, and strength.

The FITT-PRO Approach to Exercise*

Frequency and time Intensity Progression
General exercise

30 minutes or more of continuous or accumulated physical activity, seven days per week

Moderate intensity assessed by one of the following criteria:

Able to speak but not sing comfortably during exercise

Somewhat difficult (RPE† at 12 to 14)

Maximum heart rate of 65 to 75 % (or 55 to 64 % for patients who are unfit)

Increase intensity over time to maintain moderate intensity criteria. 
Aerobics training

20 to 60 minutes of continuous or intermittent exercise (minimum of 10 minutes per episode), three to seven days per week

Frequency depends on intensity; seven days per week is preferred

Moderate intensity (see above criteria) Increase the length of the exercise session every few weeks without altering intensity.

Next, maintain session length but increase intensity intermittently for a brief time (e.g., increase the pace for 20 steps, then return to a comfortable pace for three minutes, repeat).

Resistance training‡

The following regimen should be performed two or three days per week:

One set of 10 to 15 repetitions of low- intensity weight

One set of eight to 10 repetitions of moderate-intensity weight

One set of six to eight repetitions of high-intensity weight

Weight intensity:

Low: 40 % of 1-RM§ Moderate: 41 to 60 % of 1-RM§

High: greater than 60 % of 1-RM§

When 15 low-intensity repetitions are perceived as somewhat difficult for the patient (Borg RPE† at 12 to 14), increase the weight for the next session.

Gradually work back up to 15 repetitions per session at the new weight.

Flexibility training||

The following regimen should be performed two or three times per week:

Three or four repetitions for each stretch; rest briefly between stretches (30 to 60 seconds).

Hold static stretches 10 to 30 seconds.

Include static and dynamic techniques to stretch all major muscle groups.

Hold stretch in a position of mild discomfort.

Add new stretches to the routine, progress from static poses to dynamic moves, or reduce reliance on balance support.
  • FITT-PRO = Frequency, Intensity, Type, Time, and Progression; RPE = rate of perceived exertion; 1-RM = one repetition maximum.
  • *Emphasize endurance training supplemented by resistance training. More activity may be necessary to reach specific goals. See Table 4 for disease-specific guidelines.
  • †The Borg RPE scale is available at http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpa/physical/measuring/perceived_exertion.htm.
  • ‡Multiple-set regimens may provide greater benefits, if time allows. For frail or previously sedentary patients, low-intensity training with 10 to 15 repetitions may be a prudent starting point. Patient should maintain normal breathing patterns and proper technique.
  • §Repetition maximum is the most weight that can be lifted through a full range of motion, in good form, for one repetition.
  • ||Few researchers have tested whether flexibility programs can prevent or reverse the decline in range of motion with age.

 The activities and intensity levels depend on an individual’s daily health and energy needs, and the training routine should vary to maintain interest and promote optimal gains. Chair and bed-based exercise should be considered as a starting point and used by frail patients.

Exercise & Nutrition Resources

The recommended resources are organized for informational purposes. Please note that while we recommend these resources, we are not responsible for their content.

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