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EXCLUSIVE: What Is The Best Breakfast Food??

Filed under: HealthTipsPerezcious Parenting

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Perezitos.com health correspondent Ashley Koff, co-author of Mom Energy, is back with a Q&A!

One health conscious perezcious reader wants her fam to start the day with a healthy choice. She asks:

"What is the best breakfast food to jump start my family in the morning?"

Good question! That's something we'd like to know too!

Here's what Ashley Koff had to say:

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What Parents With Young Children Should Check The Nutrition Label For

Filed under: Exclusives!FoodAshley Koff

Ashley Koff red shirt

Those little black and white labels on the back of food boxes list a whole lot of nutrients, so it's not hard to become confused as to what nutrients actually matter — especially for a baby!

A FitPerez reader shopping for a child consulted Ashley Koff, R.D., asking:

So what should people look out for when they are looking at labels for babies?

According to Ashley:

In the ideal world, you aren't looking at labels for babies. If you are, then look to see if there is any sodium/salt added to the product. (There doesn't need to be at all. It would only be used for taste or for preservative, and you can buy frozen which naturally preserves without need for salt.) Food, if fresh, should be an appealing taste (or blend it with something). As more foods are introduced, focus on whether the food item needs salt in it, and where sodium appears on the ingredient list. It should be near the bottom meaning the least amount in the recipe just like you would do if you were making it at home.

For more tips and nutrition advice, check out Ashley's website!

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What Is The Right Amount Of Sodium For A Healthy Diet?

Filed under: Exclusives!Q&ADietsFoodAshley Koff

Ashley Koff

Someone must have heard about the CDC's report that found 88% American's consume an average of 53% more sodium than they should on a daily basis!

A FitPerez reader wants to know what the right amount is and consulted Ashley Koff, R.D., asking:

What’s the right amount of sodium in the diet?

According to Ashley:

There isn't an RDA, but we do use an "adequate intake" to demonstrate how small the need is. Specifically: from 0-6 mo (120 mg); from 7-12 mo (370-1g - I think 1g is pretty high unless it’s a very active child and it’s the summer, to account for heat/sweating); and 1-3 yrs (1g - keep in mind how small this is 1 tsp of salt = 4g of sodium). From toddlers to adults the need doesn’t go much higher. Recommendations aim to not exceed 2-3 grams daily for adults.

For more tips and nutrition advice, check out Ashley's website!

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EXCLUSIVE: How To Save Your Kids From Kidney Stones

Filed under: Exclusives!HealthTips

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Ashley Koff, co-author of Mom Energy, has some excellent tips to keep kids happy and healthy!

Ashley was asked: "Is it normal for kids to get kidney stones, and how can I prevent my kids form getting them?"

Ashley says there has been a rise of kidney stones in children. She as a simple way to prevent it: Less salt!

She says"

"We’ve heard about the negatives of too much sugar for baby and you, but what about too much salt? Here is a sodium primer for your baby’s intake that should act as a reminder for you too.

While sodium is necessary as an electrolyte (working in balance with potassium) for cardiovascular health, proper cellular hydration, and appropriate levels of stomach acid (hcl), too much salt can throw these functions off. What that means is greater risk of dehydration. (Sodium keeps water outside of cells whereas potassium brings it in into cells). This can be a factor in constipation resulting from dehydration. And in the extreme, excessive salt can cause blood pressure and heart function issues. The other issue is one of taste buds.

If a baby is introduced to highly salty foods early on (by that I mean salt-added) than they are more likely to develop their taste buds with that sensitivity. There is also a connection between high salt and high sugar cravings."


Eating less salt does more than just reduce your chance of kidney stones! It's really important to maintain a low sodium diet.

For more information and tips, go to Ashley Koff's nutritional plan website!

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EXCLUSIVE: How Moms Can Get Energy At ANY Age!

Filed under: HealthTips

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Ashley Koff, co-author of Mom Energy, has some excellent tips for moms of ANY age!

Whether you're in your 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s and beyond, Ashley knows how to get the nutrition you need to get maximum energy.

There are four key principles for getting your best energy at any decade – and then some specifics by decade (and lifestage). Quantity, Quality, Frequency, and Balance hold the key to optimal energy.

#1) Quantity: When we eat too much at one time, our bodies get overwhelmed and that causes energy inefficiency. The body stores what it can’t use as fat.

#2) Quality: Everyone should be a Qualitarian – which means making the best quality choice possible at any given eating occasion. Why? The better quality the fuel, the better the body runs. When the body gets things it recognizes, it works well. When it gets chemicals, genetically modified food forms, and overly processed ingredients, it works less efficiently and often gets irritated (which can lead to symptoms and disease).

#3) Frequency: Think of your body like a racecar not a street car. It needs just the right amount of fuel to function and then re-fuel…this way you avoid storage (i.e. fat creation), and your system stays light and efficient for optimal energy. Eating about every 3 hours is ideal.

#4) Balance: This refers to nutrient balance – as in consuming some carbs, protein, and healthy fat at each eating occasion - as opposed to eating too much of one or too little of another. The goal here is to get nutrients that provide quick energy (carb) as well as those that provide sustaining energy (protein and fat).

More specifically, she gives tips on exactly what you need to know according to your age:

In your 20s, you should focus on becoming a Qualitarian. Ditch the processed foods and chemicals so that you build the strongest foundation possible.

In your 30s, focus on nutrient Balance so that you get your energy and your weight to a healthy place. If you learn this now, you can avoid issues that can result from poor energy and excess fat later in life.

In your 40s, focus on Frequency making sure that you aren’t eating too much at one time but rather are giving your body boosts of needed energy throughout the day. This will replenish your stores and keep your body working best.

In your 50s, re-focus on Quantity or focus on it for the first time. Too much of any nutrient will get stored. This can lead to an increased risk of disease as well as a physical burden from carrying too much weight, especially as this is the time in life where it’s more likely to aggregate around the belly.

Lots of good info! For more information and tips, go to Ashley Koff's nutritional plan website!

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