Boosting Positive Body Image

Take a moment this week to focus more on the positive, forget black and white thinking, and exercise your passion with this inspirational blog post!

Photo Credit: andresAzp via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: andresAzp via Compfight cc

More on the Positive – Instead of focusing on weight, scales or muscles, think about the positive characteristics you possess…humor, creativity, passion. Focusing your positive characteristics can help you build self-esteem and positive body image.

Forget Black and White Thinking – No food is “bad” or “good.” Food provides us with energy and nutrients but in varying amounts. By refraining from labeling foods, we can help prevent ourselves from internalizing those same labels. To learn more about how to foster a healthy habits with food, check out the Healthy Habits Program.

Exercise Your Passion – Do you enjoy swimming, hiking or basketball? Have you ever tried a relaxing yoga session or an upbeat spinning class? Trying a new activity with a friend or simply going hiking with your family can be a great way to socialize and fit in physical activity. Experiment with different activities and find what you enjoy the most. It’s important to exercise for health, wellness and enjoyment rather than just weight loss. For physical activity, think about overall wellbeing rather than pinpointing areas you find negative.

Additional Tips for Boosting Positive Body Image

  1. Surround yourself with positive people
  2. Accept that every shape and body size is beautiful
  3. Understand that the media portrays beauty in varying ways. The media and advertisements project images that are often not realistic.

Is “Gluten Free” for Your Family?: Autism and Gluten, Casein Free

*This post was originally published on the Bitsy’s Brainfood Blog. To see the original please click here.

Photo Credit: Whatsername? via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: Whatsername? via Compfight cc

Is “Gluten Free” for Your Family: Autism and Gluten, Casein Free
By Laura Cipullo, RD, CDE, CEDRD, and Mom

There aren’t too many quality research studies reporting on the gluten-free diet and its efficacy for children with autism spectrum disorders. However, you definitely hear the media and parents supporting it. The latest solid research a.k.a. randomized double-blind study only had fifteen children with ASD. This particular study from 2006 looked at the effects of the gluten-free, casein-free diet on autistic symptoms and urinary peptide levels. Surprisingly, there were no statistically significant results, still leaving the need for more research and many parents without answers. When reading the overall research, it seems parents may notice behavioral changes but nothing consistent across the board and nothing significant enough to make the recommendation to follow this diet.

However, when you keep reading, the association between ASD and GI (gastrointestinal) complaints is quite clear. Adverse GI symptoms such as diarrhea and abdominal pain are reported from 9 to 91 percent in different study populations1. The cause of these GI problems is unclear, but it appears to relate partially to abnormal carbohydrate digestion1 and abnormal gut flora possibly due to excessive use of oral antibiotics2. If gut flora is a concern, probiotics may help decrease ASD symptoms.

As parents wait for more information, many are willing to try the variety of diets that promise decreased symptoms. Like any child, a child with ASD is an individual and may/may not respond to dietary changes. It could be like many other foods—there are intolerances or sensitivities not recognizable as food allergies. There are many questions for parents to ask themselves and/or their child’s team. Weigh the pros and cons and decide what you think is best for your child.

– See more at the Bitsy’s Brainfood Blog.

 

References:

1. Williams, B. L., M. Hornig, T. Buie, M. L. Bauman, M. Cho Paik, et al. “Impaired Carbohydrate Digestion and Transport and Mucosal Dysbiosis in the Intestines of Children with Autism and Gastrointestinal Disturbances.” PLoS ONE 6, no. 9 (2011): e24585. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0024585.

2. Adams, et al. “Gastrointestinal Flora and Gastrointestinal Status in Children with Autism–Comparisons to Typical Children and Correlation with Autism Severity.” BMC Gastroenterology 11, no. 22 (2011). doi:10.1186/1471-230X-11-22

Is Your Cow Grass Fed?

Is Your Cow Grass Fed?
By Laura Cipullo and the Laura Cipullo Whole Nutrition Services Team

Photo Credit: tricky (rick harrison) via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: tricky (rick harrison) via Compfight cc

We all know that organic dairy has become the thing to buy in health stores nationwide, but there has been a movement recently towards grass fed dairy products over just organic ones. Why is that?

Grass fed dairy comes from cows eating a natural diet of alfalfa sprouts, grass, and hay, not corn or soy feed. Grass fed cows are not treated with hormones or given any genetically modified products. Some studies have shown that grass fed dairy contains higher levels of Omega-3 fatty acids than traditional or even organic milk. Omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to protect against heart disease and even stroke, and we cannot make them naturally, so we need to get them from the foods we eat. These are a few of my favorite companies making dairy products with grass-fed dairy; give them a try and see if you can taste the difference!

 

Kerrygold Cheese and Butter, has a wide selection of good butters and cheese free of artificial flavors and sweeteners that come from entirely grass fed cows in Ireland, who graze outside for over 300 days every year!

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Maple Hill Creamery, produces the 100% grass fed milk that goes into their yogurt cups and drinkables. Their yogurts have no added thickeners, preservatives, or unnatural flavors. I met a Maple Hill Farmer at Food Fête who is committed to raising cows that eat only grass and never corn or grains.

 

Organic Valley, has a whole line of products, from milk to cheese to soy products and meat that are organic and free of hormones and pesticides. They also have exclusive grass milks, made only from cows fed grass, nothing else.

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Thanks in part to Maple Hill Creamery, a new labeling initiative is being taken on to certify grass-fed verification and traceability so you know when you buy grass fed, that’s exactly what you’re getting! So be on the lookout for labels that say “100% GrassFed”!

How Your Dinner Plate Can Affect Your Diet

Did you know that your dinner plates can actually affect the amount of food you and your children consume? As a mom and dietitian, I understand the need for parents to feed their kids well while fostering a positive relationship with food. This relationship is more complicated than the nutritional value of what you serve, however; in fact, it actually begins with your servingware.

If you haven’t thought about it before, then consider it now. Beyond ingredients alone, parents need to think about the ways in which the environment impacts children’s associations with food. Eating off of dishes that we find aesthetically pleasing or comforting can set us up for a sense of satisfaction before even taking a bite off our plate – and the same goes for our children.

When it comes to finding the perfect plates that suit your parenting philosophies and personal styles, consider yourselves covered. These five picks won’t just help to foster healthy attitudes in the kitchen; they’ll also eliminate unnecessary stress by prompting your ever-picky eaters to finish what’s in front of them.

 

1. The No Fuss Mom: Corelle White Dish

I’ve eaten off of these plates for years! Dishwasher safe and practically unbreakable, there is nothing better than these crisp, white dishes – except, that is, the price!

Photo Courtesy of Corelle

 

For a mere $50 dollars, you can purchase a set of eight of these family-friendly plates.

Eating off of white dishes creates a colorful contrast with your meal which, based on studies by Dr. Brain Wainsink, lends to eating smaller portions and over time, an easy way to lose weight without consciously dieting.

 

2. The Eco-chic Mom: Bambooware Santa Barbara Dinnerware

For the environmentally sound mother with a love of anything green, these eco-chic plates from Bambooware are made of bamboo and are decidedly awesome.

Photo Courtesy of Bambooware

Not only are they melamine-free, but these low-impact plates are both reusable and dishwasher safe, making them perfect for every occasion, from family meals to birthday parties and more.

 

3. The New Mom: Green Eats BPA-Free Kids Dishes

Babies and tots are known for touching, tantrums and throwing, so we’re not exactly serving our little bundles of joy baby food or even finger food off of our finest china. Yet with all the talk and rising concerns about BPA, many parents are hesitant to use plastic servingware, bottles and plates – even if many states, including New York and California, have put BPA-free laws in place.

Photo Courtesy of Green Eats

These BPA-free plates from Green Eats gives new moms everywhere one thing less to worry about, and are ideal for serving wholesome, sustainable foods to our little ones.

 

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This was originally posted on www.ModernMom.com, to read the rest of this article please click here.

Diabulimia: Learning More about your Teen and their Type-1 Diabetes Diagnosis

Diabulimia: Learning More about your Teen and their Type-1 Diabetes Diagnosis
By Laura Cipullo and the Laura Cipullo Whole Nutrition Services Team

 

Diabulimia is an unofficial term, used by both the American Diabetes Association and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, to define a serious condition effecting, but not limited to, adolescent girls diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.

Photo Credit: via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: via Compfight cc

An adolescent diagnosed with diabulimia (known formally as ED-DMT1) is characterized by the intentional misuse and manipulation of insulin for the purposes of weight loss and control. By decreasing, or skipping the necessary dose of insulin, the individual’s body cannot absorb the carbohydrate, which affects weight and causes high blood sugar. This is very dangerous state as high blood sugar can cause Diabetic Ketoacidosis.

 

Did you know diabulimia’s prevalence is most widely recognized in adolescent girls? Studies conducted by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: Pediatric Nutrition, report that an adolescent girl, with T1DM, is 2.4 times more likely to develop an eating disorder than her peers. While it is difficult to pinpoint the culprit behind diabulimia, the current assumption is the hyper focus on diet, control and weight. The strict diet associated with diabetes care and the pressures associated with women, eating, and body image could “exacerbate preexisting disordered eating tendencies.” (Childers)

 

If your tween or teen has diabetes, here are signs that may signify there is an element of disordered eating or an eating disorder:

  1. Frequent Diabetic Ketoacidosis
  2. Excessive Exercise
  3. Use of diet pills or laxatives to control weight
  4. Anxiety about or avoidance of being weighed
  5. Frequent and severe hypoglycemia
  6. Binging with alcohol
  7. Severe stress in family
  8. Frequent Insulin omission (Franz)

This is a relatively new branch to the field of nutrition, displayed by its mixture of symptoms and heath concerns.  It is important to remember the American Diabetes Association (ADA) continues to stress that there is no “one-size-fits-all” eating pattern for individuals with diabetes. When it comes to dietary recommendations, there is a strong emphasis on personal/cultural sensitivity and care. If your adolescent shows the above signs, it is highly recommended to seek a registered dietitian who specializes in both diabetes and eating disorders.

DiabulimiaPostAdditionalResources

What do you think the prevalence of Diabulimia suggests about adolescent girls perception of health? How can we help to reframe this image?

 

 

Resources

  • Nancy, Childers, and Hansen-Petrik Melissa. “Diabulimia in Adolescent Females.” Pediatric Nutrition 37.3 (2014): 13-16. Print.
  • Franz, Marion J., and Kulkarni, Karmeen. Diabetes Education and Program Management. Chicago, IL: American Association of Diabetes Educators, 2001. 159. Print.

Coconut Oil is Going Mainstream

 

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The brand Vita Coco, known for their delicious coconut water never made from concentrate, is debuting their very own line of coconut oil. This oil has been used for centuries in ayurvedic therapies and has been making a comeback recently on the general market. The great thing about this tropical fat is that you can eat it and wear it.

Coconut oil has a variety of uses from the kitchen to the powder room. Coconut oil is a saturated fat, but no need to freak out just yet. This type of plant-based saturated fat (or medium chain fatty acid) raises both your “healthy” HDL and your “lousy” LDL, but does not create an unhealthy balance between your HDL and LDL*. Your heart is more in danger when your HDL and LDL are closer in number to each other. Also, because of its saturated chemical structure, coconut oil has a high smoke point. This means that coconut oil can reach high temperatures in the pan or an oven without producing cancer-causing compounds like some other oils. Coconut oil is also solid at room temperature, like butter, which means that it can usually replace butter as a cholesterol-free, non-dairy fat source in, say, your next brownie recipe. Look below for another fun idea to try in the kitchen.

 

Do you want to feel like you’re in the Bahamas without getting on a flight? Take some coconut oil (about a teaspoon at a time) and slather it on your body as a lotion. This versatile oil leaves your skin feeling silky and hydrated, and the lauric acid (the type of fatty acid in coconut oil) is linked to killing harmful bacteria and boosting one’s immunity.

 

The researchers are still in disagreement on all of the exact long-term benefits of coconut oil as an anti-viral compound with even the potential power to fight HIV, but there is no doubt that this a delicious addition to your pantry and your vanity.

Before you buy, make sure the coconut oil is as minimally processed as possible. Vita Coco’s version is Extra Virgin, USDA certified organic, 100% raw and cold-pressed, meaning that all the nutrients are retained since the product is never heated. For more information about this product, you can follow Vita Coco on Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #eatitwearitswearbyit, or by visiting their website vitacocococonutoil.com.

 

 

*Source: Willet WC. “Ask the Doctor: Coconut Oil.” Harvard Health Letter: May, 2011. http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletters/Harvard_Health_Letter/2011/May/coconut-oil

 

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Vita Coco’s Spiced Popcorn
Makes 2 servings

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup salt
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 2 tablespoons ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup popcorn kernels
  • 1 tablespoon Vita Coco coconut oil for popping
  • 2 tablespoons Vita Coco coconut oil for tossing

 

Directions:

  1. In a large pan with a fitted top, heat the 1 tablespoon of coconut oil over medium heat. Add the kernels and toss them in the oil to coat well.
  2. Cook the popcorn until all the kernels stop popping. Transfer the popcorn into a large mixing bowl and drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of melted coconut oil.
  3. Mix all the spices together in a small bowl and add the mix to the popcorn until the desired taste is reached. Enjoy!

Is Your Trainer Trained?

Is Your Trainer Trained?

Do you ever wonder what the initials after your trainer’s name stand for? Or what initials should a trainer even have? EALM asked fitness trainer Tiffany Chag, CSCS to let us know what credentials a personal fitness trainer should have and what they mean. Here is her response!

Photo Credit: Robert S. Donovan via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: Robert S. Donovan via Compfight cc

Chag shared “It is most important that the trainer has an up-to-date personal training certification accredited by the National Commission of Certifying Agencies (NCCA).”  Just so you know, some require a four-year college degree while others take only 20 minutes to complete online.  She let us know there are many personal training certifications out there, but there are three widely recognized personal training governing bodies and their respective certifications.”

 

  1. National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA): offers both the Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) certification and the Certified Personal Trainer (CPT) certification.  The CSCS is the most recognized and respected certification in the fitness profession, intended for trainers focused on maximizing athletic performance.  In order to sit for the four-hour exam, you must have a four-year college degree.  The CPT, also highly regarded, is intended for trainers working with the general population.
  2. American College of Sports Medicine—Certified Personal Trainer (ACSM-CPT):  Like the NSCA-CPT, this certification is intended for trainers working with the general population.  As stated on its website, the ACSM, “advances and integrates scientific research to provide educational and practical applications of exercise science and sports medicine.”
  3. National Academy of Sports Medicine—Certified Personal Trainer (NASM-CPT): This certification is also meant for trainers working with the general population and focuses more on corrective exercise through balance and functional movement.  They created the Optimum Performance Training (OPT) model to design personal training programs.

 

Tiffany made us aware of additional certifications trainers may earn. “Many trainers complete certifications for special populations such as triathlon training, pre- and post-natal, weight loss, and youth or seniors. Trainers can also obtain certifications focused on different modalities of exercise, such as: kettle bells, TRX (the black and yellow rope you see hanging around your gym), or spinning/cycling.  If you’re looking for something in particular, ask if a trainer has a specialty certification or if they’ve ever worked with someone in a similar situation.  Most trainers will gladly provide referrals, if you’re interested.”

Photo Credit: Justin Liew via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: Justin Liew via Compfight cc

Tiffany Chag’s Words of Wisdom for the World of Fitness:

“Ask questions!  I can count on one hand the number of times a prospective client has asked about my background—this always surprises me. The more you learn about the trainer, the more likely you are to find the right match to help you reach your health and fitness goals.

Working with a trainer should be challenging and should push you outside your comfort zone, but mostly…it should be fun.  In between catching your breath, ideally you’re able to eke out a smile!”

Thanks Tiffany!! You can check out more about Tiffany Chag, CSCS and her certifications at: www.tiffanychagtraining.com ~ Facebook.

Laura Cipullo and EALM’s Words of Wisdom for the World of Fitness:

Look for the initials CSCS, CPT and or NASM-CPT. Ask questions and make sure you don’t push too hard to cause injury!! Also check out www.destructivelyfit.com to see if your trainer has been trained to work with eating disorders.

Teaching Food Waste and Hunger without Worrying Your Child

Teaching Food Waste and Hunger without Worrying Your Child

In the springtime, a mother asked me, “How do I teach my child about food waste and hunger without worrying or shaming her?” Well, I didn’t have the answer, but I now have a way to at least start the conversation. In honor of Hunger Action Month, read on to learn about nutrition student and Rescuing Leftover Cuisine volunteer Hannah Husby’s recommendations to turn extra food into meals for others. –Laura Cipullo, RD, CDE, CEDRD and Mom

Photo Credit: jbloom via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: jbloom via Compfight cc

Ideas for Food Rescue Hannah Husby, Nutrition Student, NYU   While we worry a lot these days about all the food we are eating, we should consider turning our positive attention to food we may be wasting. Of course, everyone wastes food from time to time; it’s easy to want to buy all the beautiful produce at the farmer’s market, only to find you bought too many peaches—and the last two became rotten before you could eat them! (For tips on how to avoid this, see this post.) This waste tends to be more annoying than anything for us, but for those that face issues with food insecurity, having that peach before it gets soft could make a difference between going to bed hungry or not. Short of eating everything in your fridge right now so none of it goes to waste, what can be done to help? It actually takes a surprisingly small amount of time to make a difference. Big cities across the country can use help feeding their homeless and secure food, and this can make an incredible impact. Here are a few places to check out in New York City:

City Harvest – Known for everything from food rescue to nutrition education, City Harvest has served New York for over thirty years and continues to eliminate food waste every day.

Rescuing Leftover Cuisine – A smaller and recently created non-profit, Rescuing Leftover Cuisine also aims to feed the hungry by taking donations from restaurants and businesses, no matter how small, and can always use volunteers to transport this food directly to shelters and pantries.

Food rescues can also be found all over the country by checking out Feeding America, but if there are no rescues in your community, you can actually create your own with the help of City Harvest!   Volunteering, even just an hour or two a week, can do wonders not only for the community you live in, but also for yourself, connecting you more with those around you and creating a fresh perspective on those day-to-day complaints we all face. And it certainly helps you appreciate how wonderfully delicious those peaches are!

Chef It Up…Read EALM’s kitchen “aides”

Chef It Up…Read EALM’s kitchen “aides”
By Laura Cipullo and the Laura Cipullo Whole Nutrition Services Team

Ever wonder about the best way to store coffee, the correct temperature for cooking a cut of meat, or how to make a flakey pasty crust?

In today’s digital age we often just turn to Google for instantaneous answers to all of our questions. But there’s nothing quite like having this information in one easily accessible place. Keep in mind that not everything we read on the Internet comes from reliable sources. Finding trustworthy answers to these kinds of questions often requires us to research many different sites. Whether you are a dietitian, chef, home cook, or simply someone who eats (i.e. ANYONE!), you probably have a variety of questions about food and cooking. Why does a certain food do that when it cooks? Where does our food come from?  How has food changed over the years? If you’re at all curious about food or cooking, here are three highly recommended books to help answer your questions…whether you’re an at-home food scientist, a “YUMPIE” chef or simply a literature loving foodie. These books are sure to make your epicurean experiences that much more satisfying.

 

Three kitchen “aides” to help the three different kinds of foodies:

For the scientific cook:

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On Food and Cooking by Harold McGee

For the more experienced and the science-minded person, On Food and Cooking by Harold McGee is a great resource—an encyclopedia dealing exclusively with food and cooking—and one of my favorites reference sources! McGee’s book contains definitive answers to many of our everyday food questions…and so much more. The book begins by focusing on the most commonly used ingredients. So here are just a few of the things you can learn: the difference between cream and milk, how eggs are graded, and various cooking methods for meat and fish. It provides descriptions of some of the more than 2,000 cultivated varieties of edible plants. It discusses different flavors. It explains the baking process and how to create a variety of sauces. It reveals how to brew alcoholic beverages. And it includes in-depth descriptions of cooking methods and materials. This book is a “must have” for nutrition and culinary students as well as professional chefs. It’s also a great reference tool for the at-home chef to keep close at hand. You can easily research the reasons behind a specific food reaction and/or quickly find answers to your daily cooking questions.

 

For our “YUMPIE” chefs:

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Cooking for Geeks: Real Science, Great Hacks and Good Food by Jeff Potter

If you want to learn about food science but actually are not too fond of science, Cooking for Geeks: Real Science, Great Hacks, and Good Food by Jeff Potter may be the perfect book for you. A quick read, it helps you effortlessly expand your knowledge about food science. Potter breaks down the complexities of food science into easy-to-understand terms. And once you understand the science behind cooking, you’ll be able to view your recipes from entirely new perspectives. Your kitchen will be stocked with blank canvas for you to create masterpieces. Potter also includes some basic foundational recipes to help the concepts solidify in your brain. You’ll learn why something happens and then be able to attempt it in your own test kitchen!

 

By the way…. YUMPIE is a real word! A YUMPIE is a young, educated, career-orientated person who wants to get ahead in the world.[i] Don’t believe me? Check out dictionary.com.

 

For the literature-loving foodie:

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Consider the Fork by Bee Wilson

If you want to learn more about food and cooking but are really more interested in the story than the science, Consider the Fork by Bee Wilson would be perfect for your next beach read or even a good option for your book club. Written by food writer and historian Bee Wilson, Consider the Fork takes you on an adventure depicting how your kitchen tools affect your food. Written as a novel rather than a reference tool, it includes some science and history but is also interwoven with personal experiences. Wilson’s book provides an interesting visualization about how the tools we’ve used throughout history have shaped what we eat today.

 

No matter what stage of the game you currently may have reached in your kitchen comfort, knowledge and/or expertise, you’ll learn much more about food and how best to prepare it with each one of these books. Not only will they help you when you’re in the kitchen, but you’ll also be able to impress your family and friends with some fun food facts the next time you’re out for lunch or dinner. Or, perhaps, if you wind up trying to solve a crossword puzzle laden with food clues!


[i] YUMPIE. Available at Dictonary.com