Alexandra's Nutrition Page

Fun Facts About Nutrition

Elísabet Margeirsdóttir - An Icelandic Nutritionist

Why I chose Elísabet

The real reason I chose Elísabet is because she was the only one who answered my questions, so I’m really happy about that. But after reading her answers I think I may have come to the conclusion that she’s really much down-to-earth person. She looks like she’s very dedicated to her job and she answered all of my questions sufficiently.

Elísabet Margeirsdóttir is a young nutritionist and a runner. She’s also the founder of Beta næringarráðgjöf. She wrote the book “Út að hlaupa” with her friend Karen Kjartansdóttur. The book is a universal running book for all types of people. It was published in 2013 and has since then been very popular.

The Interview

Summary of the interview

I interviewed the runner and nutritionist Elísabet Margeirsdóttir. I e-mailed her a few questions and she answered me right away. Elísabet really likes her job. She says it’s diverse and enjoyable, because it’s her hobby. She meets with different people every day and tries her best to help them out (about eating habits and more). Not only does she give people good advices, but she also acts upon her own ones. Elísabet is continually trying to get new and fresh ideas for herself and her clients.

The job is sundry and balanced. It offers various projects for both individuals and groups of people. Elísabet thinks it’s also nice to give lectures for companies and groups. Since she works alone and independently it can sometimes be difficult to plan and organize every single day.

Elísabet has a BS (bachelor’s) degree in Biochemistry and a MS (master’s) degree in Nutrition. She says her education comes in good handy and is very useful for her everyday life. By educating yourself in those fields you could work in food manufacturing (companies), product development, menu composition, lectures, counseling, health media and so much more. Elísabet has learned so much from her work. She’s got a great experience in dealing with different people from various places. The job is rewarding and challenging.

Elísabet’s interests all relate to her job. She has always had an enthusiastic interest in sports, biochemistry and energy metabolism. She uses her interest to assist and advice people. By that her clients get better results in overcoming their various aliments. She also says that health is really important. It matters because if you have a bad health you can’t achieve what you want to accomplish each day. People need to find a good incentive and a reason to live a healthy lifestyle. We are all different and each one has to find his balance, which results in good health and prowess. But at the same time we may not forget to enjoy our lives.


  1. What’s your name and what do you do for a living?
  2. What do you think of your job?
  3. What do you like the most about your job?
  4. What do you dislike the most about your job?
  5. What level of education have you completed?
  6. Does your education come in handy in your daily life?
  7. Name a few job opportunities related to the program you have completed (in which fields could you work?).
  8. Have you learned anything from working with what you do?
  9. Why are you interested in this field?
  10. What makes the field interesting for you, and why?
  11. Is health important to you?
  12. What can be done to encourage people to take better care of their health?

Below: Elísabet in an Icelandic advertisement for Mjólkursamsöluna

Hledsla íþróttadrykkur.mp4

Translation - English to Icelandic

An Icelandic Translation

Morgunkorn auglýsa að þau séu stútfull af vítamínum og steinefnum. Íþróttadrykkir segjast geta gefið inn fyrir sveiflandi orkuþörf þinni með hnykk af vítamínum og steinefnum (því miður, ekki einu sinni öflug vítamín og steinefni geta unnið svo hratt!). Þú veist að vítamín og steinefni eru góð fyrir þig. En hver þeirra þarf líkaminn þinn virkilega? Og er mögulegt að fá of mikið af því góða?

Hvað eru vítamín og steinefni?

Vítamín og steinefni láta líkama fólks virka eðlilega. Þó svo þú fáir vítamín og steinefni úr fæðunni sem þú borðar á hverjum degi, hafa sum matvæli fleiri vítamín og steinefni en önnur.

Vítamín skiptast í tvo flokka: fituleysin og vatnsleysin. Fituleysnu vítamínin – A, D, E, og K – leysast upp í fitu og geta verið geymd í líkamanum þínum. Vatnsleysnu vítamínin – C og B-flókin vítamín (líkt og vítamínin B6, B12, níasín, ríbóflavín, og fólat) – verða að leysast upp í vatni áður en líkaminn þinn getur tekið þau inn á sig. Út af þessu, getur líkaminn þinn ekki geymt þessi vítamín. Öll C og B vítamín sem líkaminn þinn notar ekki á leið sinni í gegnum kerfið glatast (að mestu leyti þegar þú pissar). Svo þú þarft nýja og ferska áfyllingu af þessum vítamínum á hverjum degi.

Þar sem vítamín eru lífræn efni (búin til af plöntum eða mönnum), eru steinefni ólífræn efni sem koma úr jarðveginum og vatni og eru tekin inn af plöntum eða étin af dýrum. Líkaminn þinn þarf meira magn af sumum steinefnum, líkt og kalsíum, til þess að vaxa og haldast heilbrigður. Önnur steinefni eins og króm, kopar, joð, járn, selen(íum), og sink eru kölluð snefilefni afþví þú þarft mjög lítið magn af þeim á hverjum degi.

The Original Text In English

Breakfast cereals advertise that they're packed with vitamins and minerals. Sports drinks claim they can rev up your flagging energy with a jolt of vitamins or minerals (sorry, but even powerful vitamins and minerals can't act that fast!). You know vitamins and minerals are good for you. But which ones does your body really need? And is it possible to get too much of a good thing?

What Are Vitamins and Minerals?

Vitamins and minerals make people's bodies work properly. Although you get vitamins and minerals from the foods you eat every day, some foods have more vitamins and minerals than others.

Vitamins fall into two categories: fat-soluble and water-soluble. The fat-soluble vitamins — A, D, E, and K — dissolve in fat and can be stored in your body. The water-soluble vitamins — C and the B-complex vitamins (such as vitamins B6, B12, niacin, riboflavin, and folate) — need to dissolve in water before your body can absorb them. Because of this, your body can't store these vitamins. Any vitamin C or B that your body doesn't use as it passes through your system is lost (mostly when you pee). So you need a fresh supply of these vitamins every day.

Whereas vitamins are organic substances (made by plants or animals), minerals are inorganic elements that come from the soil and water and are absorbed by plants or eaten by animals. Your body needs larger amounts of some minerals, such as calcium, to grow and stay healthy. Other minerals like chromium, copper, iodine, iron, selenium, and zinc are called trace minerals because you only need very small amounts of them each day.

Why I chose this text and the methods I used

I chose this text because I found it fun and also educating. The text is not really difficult to understand, but it’s also really not that simple, for example for people who don’t know anything about what water-soluble vitamins are. I started by separating the text into smaller pieces. After that i translated each sentence by using

Translation - Icelandic to English

An English Translation

There is no type of food, no matter how healthy we believe it is, that contains all the essential nutrients in suitable proportions. So we can get all those nutrients, that our body needs, is best to eat a little something of everything because different types of foods provide various portions of healthy substances.

Select foods that are rich in nutrients

Most foods belong in a healthy diet, as long as we mind the composition and quantity. However, the diversity should not be the reason we eat more than elseways. Therefore, it is important to choose mainly foods that are rich in nutrients such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, low-fat dairy products, fish, cod-liver oil, lean meats and more. Balanced and diverse diet does not only consist of the consumption of various foods but also does the diversity consist in serving and cooking the foods.

Improve your diet

On average about a third of the energy of a 15 year old comes from the food categories that yield very little amounts of vitamins, minerals and fiber, like sweetmeats and soft drinks. There is a significant need in minimizing the consumption of soft drinks and sweets compared to the diet as it is now in the moment. To follow all recommendations about preferable composition of the diet and the recommended daily intake of vitamins and minerals and the balance between most people need to eat more vegetables and fruits, whole grains (including high fiber bread) and fish.

The Original Text In Icelandic

Engin ein fæðutegund, hversu holl sem hún er talin, inniheldur öll nauðsynleg næringarefni í hæfilegum hlutföllum. Til að við fáum öll þau næringarefni, sem líkaminn þarf á að halda, er gott ráð að borða sitt lítið af hverju enda veita mismunandi fæðutegundir mismikið af ýmsum hollefnum.

Veljum fyrst og fremst matvæli sem eru rík af næringarefnum

Flest matvæli eiga heima í hollu mataræði, svo lengi sem hugað er að samsetningu og magni. Fjölbreytnin ætti hins vegar ekki að vera til þess að við borðum meiri mat en ella. Þess vegna er mikilvægt að velja fyrst og fremst matvæli sem eru rík af næringarefnum, svo sem grænmeti, ávexti, gróft kornmeti, belgjurtir, fituminni mjólkurvörur, fisk, þorskalýsi, magurt kjöt og fleira. Fjölbreytt fæðuval felur ekki aðeins í sér neyslu mismunandi fæðutegunda heldur felst fjölbreytnin einnig í framreiðslu og matreiðslu matvælanna.

Bætum mataræðið

Að meðaltali kemur um þriðjungur orkunnar hjá 15 ara unglingum úr fæðuflokkum sem gefa mjög lítið af vítamínum, steinefnum og trefjum, svo sem hvers konar sætmeti og svaladrykkjum. Veruleg þörf er því á að draga úr neyslu gosdrykkja og sælgætis miðað við mataræðið eins og það er núna. Til að ná að fylgja öllum ráðleggingum um æskilega samsetningu fæðunnar og ráðlagða dagskammta vítamína og steinefna og jafnvægi þar á milli þurfa flestir að borða meira af grænmeti og ávöxtum, grófu kornmeti (þ.á m. trefjaríkari brauðum) og fiski.

Why I chose this text and the methods I used

I chose this text because it’s an important reading for everyone. Way too many people don’t know anything about healthy eating. This text is informative and important and I think that everyone should know how to eat healthier (there’s always something we can change about our eating habits). The methods I used were just an online dictionary ( I also tried to translate each sentence separately and divide the text into few paragraphs.

Insulin resistance and diabetes

Peter Attia is a surgeon and a self-experimenter. He developed a metabolic syndrome, despite exercising three or four hours a day and following the food pyramid to the letter. He started gaining weight and became insulin-resistant. Insulin is the master hormone that controls what our bodies do with the foods we eat. Failure to produce enough insulin is incompatible with life. Once you’re insulin resistant, you’re on your way to get diabetes. Blood sugar level rises.

Attia changed everything about his life. His diet was different from before and he lost 40 pounds. He questions why he got diabetes because he thought he was doing everything right. He became obsessed in understanding the real relationship between obesity and insulin resistance. He talks a lot about causes and effects of diabetes and insulin resistance.

Few words

ulcer – sár / særi

amputation – aflimun

pancreatic cancer – briskirtils krabbamein

contempt – lítilsvirðing / fyrirlitning

hubris – hroki / dramb

melanoma – sortuæxli

assumption – ályktun

proverbial – alþekktur / frægur

in our midst – á meðal okkar

benign – góðkynja

shin – sköflungur

per se – í sjálfu sér

debris – brak / brot

proxy – staðgengill

Why i chose this video

I chose this video because I really wanted to know what he had to say about diabetes. Today diabetes is way to common among people and everyone (I think) are so curious to know how to cure it. It'll need a few scientific researches and maybe years to come to the conclusion of this horrible disease. It was an inspiring video and made me think a bit about the future.

Ps. He cried at the end... I found it amusing.

Pps. very amusing.

American diet and diseases

The clinical professor Dean Ornish talks about diseases among Americans. He says diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and hypertension are all preventable, for at least 95 percent of people. He says people can prevent those diseases by changing lifestyle. Those diseases are also reversible he says. People eat like us, live like us and die like us (by “us” he means Americans). Two thirds of adults and 15 percent of children in America are overweight or obese, and diabetes has increased by 70% in the past ten years. He gets the people to laugh and says that we’re kind of devolving.

Why I chose this video

I chose this video we really need to start thinking about what we eat. Eating habits all around the world are getting poorer, and poorer. It looks like people need to be told what to eat. They’re not capable of choosing the right and good foods over the bad and wrong foods. I hope this video will open peoples eyes and make them think before they eat.

Being positive

The psychologist Shawn Achor is the CEO of Good Think Inc. He teaches people how to be positive and think better with their brains.

We can become positive by training our brain with just a little changing. Small changes ripple outward. He mentions a few great lasting steps to a positive thinking, for example exercising, meditating, giving random acts of kindness and more. Scientists always talk about the average person. When a certain person falls below the average, psychologists get thrilled. He says that means you’re either depressed or you have a disorder, or maybe just both. Normal is merely average he says, and psychologists only want to make people “normal” again. People come to a therapy session with one problem they leave with ten, because psychologists need the people to come back over and over again so they can hep them.

Why I chose this video

I decided to choose this video because I wanted to see something funny and inspiring. Achor talks about business, psychology and happiness in a interesting and entertaining way. The way he talks about this makes me want to watch the video over and over again. Too many people are depressed or just plain negative and too pessimistic.

Critical Book Review

Út að hlaupa is a universal running book for both beginners and experienced runners. The book’s genre is health and how to live a healthy lifestyle. The authors are Elísabet Margeirsdóttir and Karen Kjartansdóttir. We can clearly see that they know what they are doing. Their goal with this book is to help people to start running. The book suits both amateur beginners and runners with more experience. It has great and accurate plans who are easy to follow.

The book has a great preface. The authors tell their story and we get to know them a little. They are experienced runners and say that they are going to give people advices about a healthy lifestyle. There is no table of contents. The authors give us advices about exercising and dieting.

The intended audience is everyone, so the book suits most people. But the book may not be intended for children under 14 years old. The information is mostly accurate. The exercise plans aren’t that precise because they have to be flexible so they can fit most people.

The book has great formats. It’s well illustrated and very readable. The font is great and easy to read (it doesn’t irritate eyes like some others do). The back matter show the description of the book clearly.