Our Blog

Misleading Words on Food Packaging

What does “all natural”, whole grain, no high fructose corn syrup, sugar free, Organic and superfood all have in common?food-label

Words on food packaging can be misleading and it is all part of the marketing that companies use to get you to buy and consume their product. Most of these terms are not regulated by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) therefore are not scientifically backed up.

Here are why some common terms are misleading –

All Natural – According to FDA.gov, “From a food science perspective, it is difficult to define a food product that is ‘natural’ because the food has probably been processed and is no longer the product of the earth. That said, FDA has not developed a definition for use of the term natural or its derivatives.” So remember, just because soda or ice cream is all natural, doesn’t mean it’s a product with any nutritional value.  Something to keep in mind.

Whole Grain & Whole Wheat – unless the food product says 100% whole grain or whole wheat, it may only contain trace amounts, not giving you the high nutritional value product you were looking for. Make sure the 100% is the first item listed in the ingredients.

Made With/From – This only focuses on 1 ingredient to deter you from noticing what else is in the product. Made with 100% fruit juice, doesn’t mean extra sugar hasn’t been added.

100 Calorie Packs – by only focusing on the calories, the nutritional value of the prepackaged product gets lost. Cookies and crackers in 100 calories packs are still not your best choice towards overall health. 1 medium banana also has about 100 calories and provides satiety, plus is a good source of potassium, fiber and other nutrients. No marketing necessary.

Superfood – another term with no regulation. There are plenty foods that are nutrient dense with high nutritional value, that are great for you, but eating a variety of food is what’s going to lead to overall wellness.

Organic – Organically grown food is a good option, organic cookies, crackers and snacks are no better than their non-organic counterparts. Organic does not equal healthier. Processed organic foods can still be high in fat, sodium, sugar and other nutrients with no nutritional value.

Gluten Free – For the individuals with a gluten sensitivity or Celiac disease, continue to eat gluten free. For the rest, eating gluten free foods is not healthier. Just like with organic, gluten free chips, cookies and baked goods are still meant to be consumed in moderation.  Quinoa, lentils, oatmeal, rice, corn, potato, nut flours among other grains are naturally gluten free. Oats are naturally gluten free, but can be cross contaminated in processing.

With terms that can be deceptive, here are terms/authorized health claims that are strictly regulated by the FDA.

Low fat – 3 grams or less per serving

Low calorie – 40 calories or less per serving

Lean – less than 10 grams of fat per serving

Extra lean – less than 5 grams of fat per serving

Low sodium – less than 140 milligrams of salt or less per serving

The goal is to eat nutrient dense real food. Some of the healthiest food choices have no packaging at all. Don’t be fooled into believing the marketing hype.

Vote for Morgan Hill Athletic Club as Best Gym 2017! Click Here!

The Best of Morgan Hill is your guide to the greatest restaurants, shopping, services, entertainment and more in our region. We will print reader picks Friday, June 30, 2017. That's where you come in. Fill out the ballot with your picks. Votes should be only for businesses and people in Morgan Hill. Ballots must be completed by April 30 at 12 noon. Only one entry per computer.

The Best of Morgan Hill is your guide to the greatest restaurants, shopping, services, entertainment and more in our region. We will print reader picks Friday, June 30, 2017. That’s where you come in. Fill out the ballot with your picks. Votes should be only for businesses and people in Morgan Hill. Ballots must be completed by April 30 at 12 noon. Only one entry per computer.

How to Use Drop Sets to Improve Muscle Definition


While some clients hire personal trainers to help them lose weight or increase muscle mass, many are focused on developing sculpted, well-defined muscles. While there are a number of different methods that can help promote muscle growth and increases in muscle definition, one of the most effective methods is called drop setting. Bodybuilders have used this technique for years for one reason—it works.

Drop setting involves performing an exercise with a specific amount of weight to start. The goal is to do as many reps as possible until momentary fatigue (unable to complete another single rep), rest just long enough to remove some weight (dropping the weight) and then continue to work until another moment of fatigue. To execute an effective drop set, it is important to continue dropping the weight and working until the muscle reaches a point of absolute fatigue. This is the complete inability to perform another repetition, which will ensure enough training stimulus to promote muscle growth.

Here are four reasons why drop sets work, along with a few ways you can use them to help your clients achieve the gains they are seeking.



Metabolic fatigue requires working until a muscle is incapable of performing another rep. When this occurs, the muscle is depleting its stored glycogen leading to acidosis in the blood stream. Acidosis creates damage to individual muscle fibers, which initiates a repair response that results in muscle growth. Furthermore, depleting muscle glycogen increases the muscle’s ability to store more glycogen. One molecule of glycogen can hold 3 to 4 molecules of water, which leads to an increase in muscle volume.



This additional volume results in an enhanced muscle size for a period of hours. If you’re working with a client or teaching a class late in the day on Thursday, Friday or Saturday you can leave your clients or students with a nice little pump for any weekend social outings.

A proper drop set to complete fatigue can cause discomfort and potentially lead to delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS). Some clients can interpret DOMS as pain, which may provide a reason to stop working with a personal trainer. Physiological change is the result of the body performing more work than it is capable of, and the role of a personal trainer is to help clients become accustomed to being uncomfortable so they can experience results from exercise. If you use drop sets with your clients, prepare them for DOMS and offer them some recovery strategies that can help mitigate post-workout discomfort.

Drop sets can be performed with dumbbells, barbells, fixed-bar weights or machines:

  • When using dumbbells, start with one pair and perform as many reps as possible. As soon as fatigue occurs, return the dumbbells to the rack and grab the next lightest pair.
  • Barbells and weight plates can also be used, but it takes longer to adjust the amount of resistance. Once fatigue is reached with a barbell, set it down, remove one plate from each side of the bar and continue working. It is recommended to load the bar with smaller weights (such as 25-, 10- or 5-pound plates) to provide more opportunity for continuing to exercise.
  • Fixed-bar weights are usually kept in a triangle-shaped rack, with the heaviest weights on the bottom and the lighter weights toward the top. Fixed-bar weights combine the benefits of using a barbell with the ease of transitioning from one weight to another offered by dumbbells. Simply set the weight in the rack and grab the next (lighter) weight above.
  • Weight machines are the easiest to perform drop sets with because it is easy to quickly move the pin from one place in the stack to another.

For clients interested in rapid muscle growth, using drop sets can be an effective strategy to create the necessary overload to initiate physiological changes in the size and shape of the muscle. The best time to use drop sets is at the end of the workout. People always remember the last part of an experience. If the last thing in a workout is a drop set that leaves a muscle fatigue and pumped, clients will likely end their sessions with a very favorable impression of their time spent training with you.


Due to the high intensity nature of drop sets, make sure to warn clients they may experience soreness and only use drop sets when the next day will be a complete rest day. For best results and to reduce the amount of soreness a client will experience, limit the use of drop sets to only one or two muscles groups (or movement patterns) per workout.


McCall, Pete. “How to Use Drop Sets to Improve Muscle Definition.” ACE Fitness. Ace Fitness, 20 Nov. 2015. Web. 20 Nov. 2016