Fitness, Nutrition and You
Your decision to become more physically fit through your athletic center is an excellent first step toward a healthier, more active, and longer life.
Whether you are already fairly fit and are "tuning up", or have decided to make a complete lifestyle change and "overhaul" yourself, getting the right exercise in the right amount will help enormously.
Will Exercise Be Enough?
According to the Center for Disease Control, obesity and chronic disease resulting from poor nutrition and high levels of inactivity are an epidemic in the United States. "Increasing opportunities for healthy eating, such as making fruits and vegetables more available, will enable people to eat better."
The National Cancer Institute recommends a combination of 5 fruits and vegetables per day combined with at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise, 5 days a week.
The Food & Drug Administration also recommends a healthy balanced diet based on the food pyramid. Coupled with exercise, this will help prevent heart disease America's #1 cause of death.
Are You Eating "5-A-Day"?
According to the CDC, probably not. A
whopping 76.6% of Americans eat less than
the recommended 5 fruits and vegetables a day, with 38.7% eating 3-4 a day, 34.1% eating 1-2 a day, and 3.8% eating less than one fruit or vegetable every day.
Americans are increasingly "Time Starved"
The 168 hours a week that used to be sufficient to get everything done is now, somehow, insufficient.
Increased working hours, longer commutes, heavier social agendas, children's extra-curricular programs, fitness activities, etc. are often cited as the culprits behind the lack of available time. In fact, the U.S. Department of Labor is launching a Time-Use Survey in January 2003 to find out where all that time goes.
What has become increasingly clear is that Americans are more often choosing convenience foods for their daily food requirements in order to save the time normally required for shopping and preparing foods that are nutritionally balanced.
Whether these convenience foods are from sources such as: delivery, take-out or commercial frozen entrees, the fact remains that Americans (especially those enrolled in a demanding fitness program) aren't meeting nutritional requirements with these foods.
What Can You Do?
Fortunately, there is an option for achieving balance between optimal nutrition and time constraints. By having your own Personal Chef, you will not only get foods that are tailored to your dietary needs, they are designed to please your individual tastes!
According to the Wall Street Journal (December 16, 2002;Page R4), "Sharon Esche-Irving and her husband managed to get an exercise regime going, but found themselves sabotaging the efforts with their eating habits, specifically the after-the-gym, junk-food rewards. So they hired a personal chef."
"We get the nutrition and taste we want when we want it at a price that we found is no more expensive, and in some cases less, than buying your own food, says Ms. Esche-Irving."
What is a Personal Chef?
A Personal Chef is a culinary professional who will prepare meals, right in your home, that are designed to meet your dietary needs and specific tastes in food. These meals are stored in your refrigerator or freezer, ready for you to heat and enjoy at your leisure.
Unlike a private chef, who is usually a high-cost employee of a single family, a Personal Chef is an independent businessperson who maintains a variety of clients. This way, each client pays a substantially lower amount for his or her cookdates.
To make sure the service will meet your needs, your personal chef will first meet with you to perform an assessment to determine the type of foods you like (or would like to try), what ingredients should never cross your lips and how you like to heat your food. In addition, they will discuss the type of goals and objectives you may have regarding your food intake (i.e. lower fat and sodium, specific diet, etc.).
How does the process work?
If you decide to hire a Personal Chef, they will schedule one or more cookdates immediately. A menu will be provided to you that offers you a variety of choices based on the assessment the chef completed with you.
On your specific cookdate, the Personal Chef will purchase all the fresh ingredients necessary to prepare your meals.
The Personal Chef will then arrive at your home with all of their own utensils necessary to prepare your meals. The most common service is 5 different entrees (with appropriate side dishes) of 4 servings each, or 20 servings.
These meals will then be quickly cooled and stored in containers that meet your heating requirements. Full heating instructions are provided for each meal.
In about 20 minutes you can enjoy a meal that is designed to please your particular palate, made from ingredients that satisfy your dietary requirements and made without the addition of chemicals, stretchers and other questionable additives commonly found in restaurant kitchens and commercially-prepared frozen entrees.
Using a Personal Chef service can help you achieve your dietary and fitness goals without having to sacrifice precious time.
For More Information
Different Personal Chefs offer different levels of experience and specialties which includes the following:
Atkins, Pritikin, Body for Life, Zone and other weight-loss programs;
Low-fat, low-sodium and ingredient-restricted diets;
Medically-specific diets such as Candida, diabetic and chemotherapy recovery;
Home cooking to gourmet fare.
Regardless of your specific requirements, the American Personal Chef Association probably has a member chef who can perfectly tailor a menu to meet your needs.
Your chef's membership in the American Personal Chef Association is your assurance that they have received the best possible Personal Chef training to operate their businesses professionally and to their clients' satisfaction.
To learn more about how a Personal Chef can help you achieve healthier, tastier and more time-effective meal times, call 1-800-644-8389, or visit the International Personal Chef Registry and Locator at:
If you're ready to look for a personal chef now, visit:
American Personal Chef Association
4572 Delaware Street
San Diego, CA 92116
All rights reserved. © American Personal Chef Association 1996-2006 Updated 12/16/02.