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Are personal trainers the best place to go for nutrition advice?Are personal trainers the best place to go for nutrition advice?

Wheat Foods Council has developed a nutrition education program for the personal trainers who are often asked for advice.

January 30, 2018

5 Min Read
NUTRITION ADVICE: Many dieters have exercise as part of their regimen and it’s natural to turn to a physical trainer for advice on diet. In reality, many physical trainer don’t have the necessary education to give good nutrition advice.Purestock/Thinkstock

It's January. You've made a resolution to get rid of those few excess holiday pounds. You joined a gym, but you know that it's not just exercise that also plays a role, but diet as well. Your personal trainer seems like just the person to ask for nutrition advice.

But did you know that most personal trainers have little to no nutrition education? That's why the Wheat Foods Council is developing educational materials just for them.

Through research, WFC learned that many personal trainers know less about nutrition and wheat foods than registered dietitians but give a lot of advice to their clients, who share that advice with their friends and family, extending their reach to millions of consumers. Low-carb and Paleo diets have become fashionable in the endurance athletics world, and personal trainers often recommend their clients adopt one of those diets to lose weight or to train for a competitive event.

Through CenterforNutritionandAthletics.org, the Wheat Foods Council has put together a panel of nutrition experts to provide personal trainers with the information they seek.

The experts are:

• Nancy Clark, MS, RDN, CSSD, an internationally respected sports nutritionist, weight coach, nutrition author and workshop leader

• Glenn Gaesser, PhD, a professor of Exercise and Wellness in the School of Nutrition and Health Promotion, and director of the Healthy Lifestyles Research Center, at Arizona State University

• Travis Thomas, PhD, RD, CSSD, FAND, a board certified specialist in sports dietetics (CSSD) and an associate professor of Clinical and Sports Nutrition in the Department of Clinical Sciences at the University of Kentucky

• Michele Tuttle, MPH, RDN, CSSD, a world-class triathlete, coach and registered dietitian

Tuttle and Dave Mangan of K+M presented this information at the Wheat Foods Council annual meeting, Jan. 19 in Arizona.

Over the past year, WFC has successfully gotten these expert speakers' presentations accepted by the top two major PT organizations' large meetings. Gaesser presented "Carbohydrates, Performance & Weight Loss," during an American College of Sports Medicine webinar, which drew the largest audience ever for ACSM. A question/answer handout was developed and added to the Center for Nutrition and Athletics website. It was also added to ACSM's website so webinar participants and those who were unable to participate will have access to the Q&A.

At the ACSM Health & Fitness Summit & Expo 2017, Thomas and Clark presented twice on "Sports Nutrition Guidance for Athletes: Recommendations for What Works." The presentation was well-received and they were available at the WFC exhibit booth following both presentations to answer questions. Trainers could come by the booth to sign up to win a copy of Nancy Clark's Sports Nutrition Guidebook, which was given away every hour. Whisner will be presenting, "Wheat, Microbiome and Health: The Science Behind Gut Health and Food Intolerances" twice at the 2018 Expo in April.

At Idea World 2017, the world's largest personal trainer expo with more than 13,000 personal trainers and fitness professionals, Clark presented, "Keeping It Real: Sports Nutrition in Action" to a sold out room. Again she was available at the booth after her presentation and her book was given away hourly. Gaesser will be presenting at the 2018 Idea World conference this summer.

In addition to the website, the Wheat Foods Council has also developed the Food Fit app, where nutrition and athletes meet. This app will allow personal trainers to share science-based nutrition information with their clients. It includes nutrition advice, meal plans, client tips, menus and videos.

WFC also sponsored Michele Tuttle, MPH/RD, in the 2016 ITU World Triathlon Championships, where she captured the silver medal. She qualified for the ITU World Triathlon Final, where she completed her fourth consecutive top 12 finish of international field competitors. She finished in first place in her age group in the U.S. Nationals last summer and qualified for Sydney in 2018. Tuttle is a spokesperson who knows nutrition and wheat, and believes in science-based nutrition recommendations, and encourages the consumption of wheat and wheat foods. Tuttle continues to set an excellent example of an athlete "powered by wheat" who can inspire those in and out of the sports world to eat right (which includes complex carbohydrates/wheat), exercise, set goals and strive to achieve goals in both sports and nutrition. Her accomplishments and knowledge give Wheat Foods Council tremendous credibility with personal trainers.

In addition, WFC is providing chefs at the Culinary Institute of America with information about enriched grains, helping to resolve myths about the image of modern wheat and continuing discussions with registered dieticians about the health benefits of wheat foods.

2016-2017 was also the start-up of WFC's custom chef education program, hosted and taught by chef Bill Briwa, professor at the Culinary Institute of America. WFC brought a targeted group of restaurant chefs who make menu decisions for their companies to the institute to explore new ways to incorporate wheat foods into their menus. These chefs make menu decisions for some large restaurant chains, such as Wendy's, Chick-Fil-A and Sonic, with more than 12,000 locations combined. WFC will be hosting another two-day event this year with 12-15 prominent chefs, giving them an opportunity to consider different ways that wheat foods can fit into their menus.

It is also important for the WFC to continue to educate registered dietitians about wheat foods, and maintain the strong relationship they have developed with them over the years. They continue to deliver information to RDs on gut health, gluten-free fad diets and nutrients of concern as topics of importance to the wheat industry.

Kansas wheat farmers Ron and Shirley Suppes and staff members Cindy Falk and Marsha Boswell attended the meeting to represent Kansas Wheat. The Kansas Wheat Commission is a voting member of the Wheat Foods Council, which is made up grain producers, millers and bakers, baking suppliers, life science companies and cereal manufacturers. The Council develops sound educational and promotional nutrition programs that reach health and nutrition professionals, opinion leaders, media and consumers.

Source: Kansas Wheat

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