Army H.e.a.l.t.h. Arsenal
June, 2014

Operation Supplement Safety (OPSS) in a joint military initiative between the Human Performance Resource Center and the Department of Defense (DoD) has created a free app. to educate Soldiers and their family members about dietary supplements and how to choose them wisely.

The OPSS app is available at these links for Android and for iPhone/iPad, or go to the Google or iTunes store and search for "Operation Supplement Safety." Use your .mil email address to open an account with the Natural Medicines Comprehensive

Fitness Challenge

We Challenge You! Submit a picture of something that inspires you to be physically active along with a short explanation. It can be anything! Email it to for a chance to be featured in our next newsletter!

Follow Us!

A Calorie is a Calorie Myth

It has been well understood that in order to achieve and maintain a healthy weight, one must reduce overall calorie consumption and increase calorie expenditure through physical activity. One pound of body weight equals 3500 calories (so to lose one pound a week, one must decrease food intake by 500 cals/day), but not all calories are created equal! When trying to lose or maintain weight, it is best to choose your calories wisely; this means that in order to get "more bang for your caloric buck", choose foods that will positively affect your health. If most of your calories come from fatty foods like red meat, sausage, fried foods, baked goods, and creamy dishes, then blood cholesterol levels tend to be higher, which in turn can lead to clogged arteries and other cardiovascular diseases. Consuming most of your calories from healthier sources like lean protein (beans, nuts, white meats), vegetables, fruits, low fat dairy, and whole grains will have a positive effect on cholesterol and blood sugar levels, leading to a steady release of energy and an overall feeling of wellness. Another benefit of selecting healthier foods towards your daily calorie goal is that you will feel full (not hungry!) even while losing weight. Calories that come from sugary, refined foods like candy, white breads, sugary cereals, and white potatoes will cause a rapid increase in blood sugar levels followed by a surge of insulin to bring blood sugar levels back down. When blood sugar rises and falls at rapid rates, you tend to feel hungry more often and have less energy. On the other hand, a diet that is rich in whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy (unsaturated) fats will allow blood sugar levels to rise and fall at a steadier, more controlled pace, leaving you feeling satisfied between meals and more energetic.

Untitled Document

Sleep Tips from the National Sleep Foundation

  • Stick to the same bedtime and wake up time, even on the weekends.

  • Practice a relaxing bedtime ritual (such as a hot bath).

  • Avoid naps, especially in the afternoon.

  • Exercise daily.

  • Evaluate your room. Pay attention to sources of light, noise, and elevated temperature.

  • Sleep on a comfortable mattress and pillows.

  • Adjust light to help manage your circadian rhythms.

  • Avoid alcohol, cigarettes, and heavy meals in the evening.

  • Wind down. Spend the last hour before bed doing a calming activity such as reading.

  • Mindful Moment

    Bottom Line

    How you fuel your body can drive both mental and physical performance. Being aware of not only the quantity of food, but also the quality of food that you eat can help you on your journey to a healthier self. It is also important to monitor and research any dietary supplements before taking them. The OPSS app is a great tool for this!

    Trying the featured recipes and exercises can help deter boredom and provide new, exciting ways to fuel and exercise your body. Don't forget to try out the sleep tips, too. Getting an adequate amount of sleep will leave you feeling fully rested and ready to take on the day!

    Featured Recipe:
    Easy Louisiana
    Red Beans & Rice

  • 2 cups uncooked basmati brown rice
  • 13 oz. turkey kielbasa (or chicken Andouille)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large white onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large green pepper, finely chopped
  • 3 large celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Cajun or Creole seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 (15 ounces) cans red beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • Cook rice according to package and set aside. Cook kielbasa or sausage on medium-high heat, stirring frequently for 4 minutes. Remove from pot and set aside. Reduce to medium heat and add oil. Add onion, pepper and celery; saute for 8 minutes. Add garlic, Cajun seasoning, smoked paprika and salt; saute another 2 minutes. Add in beans and water; bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes. Mash some of the beans against the side of the pot to thicken . Add the sausage back in, stir well and cook another 15 minutes. Serve over brown rice.

    Nutrition Information:
    Servings: 8
    Calories: 349
    Carbs: 53g
    Fat: 8g
    Protein: 21g
    Sodium: 1164mg
    Sugar: 3g

    Featured Exercise:

  • Burpess
  • Squats (body weight)
  • Push Ups
  • Mountain Climbers
  • Perform each exercise at high intensity for 20 seconds followed by a 10 second rest. Repeat 2x-5x depending on fitness level.

    Research has shown that shorter, more intense Tabata-style workouts provide measurable cardio benefits. Start off doing one round, then gradually work your way until you're repeating for a total of 20 minutes.