MS Health and Wellness

April 2016

Spring Food Exclusives

by Carole Booth


No, it’s not some blasphemous term used by your grandmother, but a type of vegetable. For those of you unfamiliar with a fiddlehead, it’s an edible, furled frond of a fern that is only available locally during early spring (April – May). Coveted by foodies for their subtle nutty taste, they are a source of dietary fiber and provide many vitamins and minerals plus omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. For a fresh twist on dinner, try them as a side - briefly steamed then pan friend with some butter, salt, and pepper. Yum!

Give Peas a Chance

Pea greens/shoots are another early spring produce that become locally available in April. Pea shoots are the leafy stems that appear well before its pea pods start to grow. Long popular in Asian cuisine (Hello, garlic and sesame oil!) they’re becoming increasing popular in every day cooking. Pea shoots deliver the taste of peas, but are, arguably, more versatile. You can use them fresh in a salad or stir fry or steam it similarly to spinach. If tastiness and versatility isn’t enough, these greens also pack a punch - nutritionally-speaking, of course. Two cups of raw pea shoots have only 10 calories, no fat, 35.5% of your recommended daily intake of vitamin C, 132% of vitamin K, and a healthy dose of many other vitamins, antioxidants, and phytonutrients.

Benefit from Super Sets and Compound Sets

by Chris Giannetto

Sticking with our quick hits theme for 2016 (i.e. shorter articles in the newsletters), we want to highlight a quick way to spend less time in the gym and get even better results. We briefly mentioned super and compound sets in our February 2016 edition, but what is it that makes them just so effective?

To review, a super set is two sets done back to back (no rest whatsoever) for two different exercises of antagonistic muscle groups. Antagonistic means opposite each other, so chest and back, biceps and triceps, quads and hamstrings. While one of these muscle groups is firing the other is relaxing to allow the muscles being worked to contract. Not only will super setting reduce your gym time, you’ll keep your heart rate elevated for longer periods which in turn will give you a higher caloric burn for your time.

Compound sets are two sets of different exercises done back to back but for the same muscle. Similar in purpose to a drop set, the point here is to fatigue the muscle beyond the point of muscle failure. All in all you burn more calories in less time and have a higher post workout calorie burn, however, there’s an even greater benefit.

Super and compound sets can lead to increased muscle growth which will raise your resting metabolism leaving you healthier, stronger, and, most importantly, able to eat more food! This works by increasing the stress to the working muscles during exercise and most importantly, by saturating the muscle groups with blood.

Blood essentially acts as a delivery system for vital nutrients throughout the body. The body uses nutrients for many things, including repairing injuries or muscle tissue. When you do a super set for say quads and hamstrings, blood is flowing to your quads initially to provide them with oxygen and remove waste products such as lactic acid (which causes that burning feeling), then will quickly start to flow into your hamstrings creating a saturation effect.

If you’ve ever seen the Arnold Schwarzenegger classic “Pumping Iron”, Arnold describes the phenomenon known as the “muscle pump”. The muscle pump was originally thought to be a purely cosmetic short term side effect of working out, however it turns out that “the pump” is essential to muscle growth. When your muscles are working, they become tight and swell as the heart continues to send blood to keep them working. Eventually the muscles swell to the point where they temporarily cut off veins which transport blood back to the heart. As a result the incoming blood flows in much faster than the outgoing blood can be pumped out, thus creating the “tight skin” swollen feeling. This leads to increased muscle growth in two ways.

First, the stress to the muscle is increased as the lactic acid can’t be removed as quickly (which burns…a LOT). Second, the muscles temporarily retain a larger than usual supply of blood and therefore nutrients which are essential to repair and growth.

Ultimately the cosmetic effect is short term, you won’t feel like Arnold for very long. In the longer term you will have burned more calories during the workout, increased your metabolism to burn more calories after the workout, and eventually build more muscle which leads to a higher resting metabolism overall. All these benefits from LESS time spent in the gym!

Everything in Moderation

by Todd DeStaebler

A friend of mine (actual friend, not me hiding from this story) is both health conscious and socially active as I hope you are, too. He's aware that social eating and drinking may include food and beverages that would violate most any diet, so he thinks of his eating habits differently.

For one, he doesn't use the word "diet". As we've mentioned in previous issues, certain words frame certain habits in certain ways that lead to guilt if we break our diet (or resolution). Two, he is strict about eating healthy during the week, often having only a smoothie for lunch.

When a weekend of rich foods and drinks presents itself, he's compensated for the splurge by anticipating his total weekly caloric intake and nutritional balance, allowing him to enjoy himself fully. This is a positive way to indulge. But beware its negative cousin though.

A common temptation trap people find themselves lured into is in a moment of weakness or low willpower telling themselves, for example, that it's ok to have ice cream because I did my workout today. All too often, those negotiated binges occur too often, and go beyond offsetting whatever good was done. Tailor your habits according to your goals and your personality and be honest with yourself along the way to avoid the guilt.

Q1 Health and Wellness Survey Results

by Todd DeStaebler

Thanks to all who participated. Your feedback lets us know how you're doing, how we're doing, what we should be doing less, what we should be doing more and what new things we should start doing. Below is an aggregated summary of the team's health and wellness, showing the average rating on a scale of 1-to-10 and the trend from last year:

Stress today: 6.067 much worse (must've been a bad day)

Stress over the past 3-months: 5.333 way better

Activity level: 5.667 slightly worse

Sleep habits: 5.615 better

Happiness: 6.384 much worse

Work-life balance: 6.867 way better

Capco's promoting W-L bal: 5.929 better

Productivity: 7.571 just slightly worse

Performance: 7.933 better

Time Management: 5.214 much worse

Coach rating: 7.267 new question

Participation was down this quarter which may have skewed the numbers. One-third of respondents have not completed an earlier survey, so the trends are certainly less accurate. Make the most of this year, thanks very much for your feedback and watch for us to use your suggestions!

Spice up Your Food: Cinnamon

by Chris Giannetto

Cinnamon is a lot more than just a delicious spice for pies during Thanksgiving time. That sweet, dessert like flavor can (and should) be enjoyed year round! Eating cinnamon has a ton of health benefits that make it worth adding to as many foods as possible. Cinnamon helps regulate and lower fasting blood sugar, which is a great help for anyone with diabetes or anyone who is looking to blunt the insulin response of eating. Reduction in resting insulin helps maintain healthy blood sugar levels. A recent study out of Penn State University also suggested that diets rich in cinnamon can potentially reduce the body’s negative reactions to eating a high fat meal!

In addition, cinnamon can help control muscle spasms and even aid in the treating of chronic injuries. Cinnamon contains anti-microbial compounds that can kill off harmful bacteria in the body and actively help promote healing. Cinnamon may even contain properties that inhibit the development of Alzheimer’s disease! While a lot of the university studies suggest but do not definitively prove the benefits, eating more cinnamon certainly wouldn’t hurt!

Cinnamon can be added to a variety of breakfast foods such as oatmeal, buckwheat pancakes, or whole grain waffles but it can go very well with savory foods as well. Check out recipe for lamb tagine with cinnamon, saffron and dried fruit. When all else fails, add it to a protein shake or just plain almond milk and reap the benefits of cinnamon!

Resolution Evolution

How's it going? Are you still pursuing your resolutions? Are you following a plan? If yes, great! If no, here's a nudge to get back on track. If you're thinking "what resolutions?" "what plan?!?", get started today. It's not too late.

Earth Day 5K Green Tour

The NA Corporate and Social Responsibility Team will be hosting a 5K Green Tour in New York City on Friday, April 22, from 9:00AM to 12:00PM. Participants raise money to support environmental education programs while getting to know some of the great green sites around NYC including:

A preview of the Lowline - the world's first underground park

A green hotel

A natural food cooking school

A sneak peek of a new nature documentary

Lunch will be provided by the Natural Gourmet Institute thanks to the $30 per person donation sponsored in full by CSR for each participant! Find the registration link in your Capco email sent Thursday, April 7 at 2:34 PM (not available on the MS network). Upon successful registration, you will receive details on the route. You can bill your time to CSR volunteer hours instead of MS or PTO.

Please reach out to Rishita Mody or Oye Odewunmi for any questions.

Wall Street Run and Walk

CAPCO is proud to announce that we are supporting the American Heart Association’s (AHA) lifesaving mission of building healthier lives free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke. CAPCO will have a team at the 2016 AHA Wall Street Run & Heart Walk.

We invite you to be part of our team on May 19, as the AHA and CAPCO leads more than 12,000 runners and walkers through a course that begins at the World Financial Center and winds through the streets of lower Manhattan’s financial district.

This is a great opportunity to join together as we show CAPCO’s support for the AHA. Beyond that, your participation shows your personal commitment to leading a healthy lifestyle or paying tribute to any loved ones who may be affected by heart disease or stroke.

To register for the event, please visit

Use Promo Code: CAP16

If you have additional questions about the event, please contact Christopher Lew.

NYC Marathon 2016

As of our publication date, there are still two slots available to participate in the 2016 NYC TCS Marathon event on Sunday, November 6th, and we’re looking for Capco team members to run on behalf of Capco and Dress for Success. We know – 26 miles is a long way to go but with the training and equipment from NYC Nike, anyone can do it!

The minimum fundraising commitment is only $3,000 per person and we’ll be working with the runners to help organize fundraisers to support their commitments. Capco will also be supporting our runners by sponsoring a matching of up to 50% of the teams earned fundraising (maxed at $2000).

This is a wonderful way to help Capco make a difference and definitely a great way to get in shape. Please let us know no later than April 8th if you would like to secure a spot in running the 2016 Marathon. If you have any additional questions, please reach out to Frank Merla at and Jaclyn Silverberg at