The EALM Blog Shelf

While Laura Cipullo and the Laura Cipullo Whole Nutrition Team work on some new and exciting projects, you may notice less posts on the Eating and Living Moderately Blog. We have created a “blog shelf” below to keep you entertained and educated. Get caught up on the latest nutrition education by clicking on each year below. We will send you nutrition updates, but we will not be inundating your mailboxes on a weekly basis. If you want weekly “love” and inspiration, subscribe to our Mom Dishes It Out blog for weekly posts and recipes. Mom Dishes It Out provides expert advice from mom Registered Dietitians and mom Speech Pathologists on the “how to” of health promotion!

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The EALM Blog Shelf

Please feel free to peruse our posts organized by year below. Or take a look at the categories listed at the bottom of the page to find a post in the desired.







The Pros and Cons of Being a Vegetarian Fitness Enthusiast

Photo Credit: Alan Cleaver via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: Alan Cleaver via Compfight cc


  1. Eating a plant-based diet provides a plethora of antioxidants such as Vitamin C and Vitamin A to fight free radicals caused by exercise (where free radicals are produced at a greater rate).
  2. You are forced to focus on your dark leafy greens like spinach and collard greens and high Vitamin C foods like peppers and oranges to absorb the non – heme iron found in plant foods.
  3. Pre training foods like bagels, yogurt and peanut butter are already a part of your daily intake.
  4. You’re at an even greater advantage to prevent heart disease by exercising and eating the healthy fats such as almonds, avocados and lean proteins like beans and fish.
  5. Your physical activity and plant based lifestyle are dually protective against diabetes. Vegan diets have been shown to lower one’s average 3 month blood glucose.


  1. You must make extra effort to get your  8 essential amino acids needed for muscle and hormone synthesis by eating a variety of protein sources like beans, peanut butter, tofu and quinoa.
  2. You may need to take an omega 3 Fatty Acid supplement if you are not consuming deep sea fish. There are vegetarian marine algae forms of DHA available.
  3. Caution – place extra emphasis on eating complex carbohydrates such as whole-wheat pasta, barely, and millet.  Avoid grabbing easy and available processed stand – bys like chips, packaged cookies, and boxed macaroni and cheese.
  4. Don’t fall prey to quick soy proteins sources like veggie burgers, “unchicken” fingers and fake meat. These products are highly processed, high in sodium and artificial fillers. In addition, limit soy intake to whole soy foods like tofu, tempeh, miso and edamame.  Choose one soy food /day.
  5. Bring on the Vit. B12. Vit. B12 is generally not found in plant sources. Milk, Fortified breakfast cereals and nutritional yeast are vegetarian friendly form of this water-soluble vitamin needed for red blood cell synthesis.

What Happens on the Bike…

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

What Happens on the Bike…
By Laura Cipullo, RD, CDE, CEDRD

About three years ago, my good friend Jaime invited me to go to spin class with her. She would come over every Sunday and literally stand above my bed and ask me if I was ready. I was a mom with two very young kids, a professional career, and a husband who worked all of the time. Was I ready? Of course not! But all I had to do was throw on leggings, a tank top and sunglasses to cover the mascara smudges around my eyes from the day before! The spin studio was rather dark inside so no one would see that I hadn’t used my make-up remover. Well, what happened on that bike was more than I ever hoped might happen! Thank you, Jaime, for dragging me out of bed! Thank you, Robert, for watching the kids! And thank you, Janet, for reminding me of my own possibilities.


Once I got to class that first morning, I never looked back. Now please realize…I’m not talking about spinning right now, but rather about having the time to dream again, to set goals again, and to just feel the remarkable joy of moving in my own body. I had been in a motorcycle accident in 1996; since that time, I’d never been able to ski, run, or even wear my stilettos without severe consequences and/or extreme pain. But cycling was easier on my leg…and it gave me back “my edge.” It provided me with the opportunity—as Janet, the spin instructor advised—to set an intention on the bike for when you were literally off the bike. She didn’t talk about calories (well, maybe sometimes); instead she spoke of envisioning something you wanted to achieve and riding for that purpose. I took her every word seriously. And while on that bike, I decided that I was going to pursue my dream of writing a book.


Week after week, I went to my church (“Soul Cycle”), as Janet would say—to envision my book and sometimes to ride for a friend or family member in need of positive energy. But I have to admit that it was in Janet’s class every Sunday morning that I reminded myself that I really could do this.


I soon learned that writing a book and getting it published by a big publishing house was, in short, a seemingly backward process. Instead of writing a book and then trying to get your name and book into the public eye, I was advised by all the top editors to start a personal blog (that project eventually became MomDishesItOut) and then to go straight to television. Many advised me to skip writing a book altogether, but a book was important to me—a stepping stone in my career, something I personally wanted to do, and something I really wanted to accomplish for my mom. So I decided to take the route of working in the media while trying to write the book too. But my time was limited, and after six months of media appearances, I received my first offer to write a book. This was not necessarily my dream book, but then again, I’d never specified which book I wanted to write while I spent all those Sundays spinning away! The book’s subject was, however, close to my heart because it was about diabetes. You see, all the men in my family have diabetes. Each had helped me in my career. Whether it was letting me come along on their appointments with dietitians or introducing me to their doctors, it was meaningful to me. So, this book could, and would, be my tribute to all of them.


In the fall of 2013, what happened on that bike actually became my reality. Rodale published my first book, The Diabetes Comfort Food Diet Cookbook, authored by me and the editors of Prevention Magazine. And then, just one month later, I self-published my second book, Healthy Habits: 8 Essential Nutrition Lessons Every Parent and Educator Needs. I dedicated my first book to my family members with diabetes and, of course, to my mother. My second book is not dedicated to anyone specifically; rather, it’s for every person with great hope that each will one day create a positive relationship with eating and a neutral relationship with food. It’s for my children, my clients, and all the parents out there who receive mixed messages on nutrition. This is the book that focuses on self-care and nutrient density, not weight loss and what you can’t have. It’s sort of like spinning. I spin to take care of myself and set goals rather than to lose weight or punish myself for eating a holiday dinner.

Photo Credit: rachel a. k. via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: rachel a. k. via Compfight cc

So find your vehicle—whether it’s a spin bike or a yoga mat or even a pew in your own spiritual temple. Set your intentions for 2015. And then let us know what happens! And again, thank you Jaime, Robert and Janet.

How to Get Your Nanny to Follow Your Food Style

Guest Blog by Debra Johnson

Photo Credit: Ioannis Karydis via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: Ioannis Karydis via Compfight cc

Many children have special dietary needs that are a result of either a specific lifestyle or a health condition. A child may have an allergy to a specific food, or a family may have chosen to live a vegetarian lifestyle. No matter the reasoning for a special diet, leaving a child with a new caregiver or nanny can be a challenging experience for a parent. It can cause the parent to worry about how well the nanny will follow the child’s diet plan. For this reason, the following ideas are offered to help you teach your nanny the importance of following your child’s food style when you leave your child in their care.
1. Create a contract – When hiring a nanny, it is always a good idea to write up a simple contract that details the hours that they will work as well as other necessary guidelines. For a child who has a special diet, this can be outlined in the contract as well so that everyone understands how important it is for the diet to be followed.

2. Post a menu – Until a new nanny becomes accustomed to the child’s diet, it can be helpful to create a menu of meals for the nanny to follow. This can be posted in a visible area of the kitchen or in a manual that you create for the nanny.

3. Make it convenient – If a child’s diet is complicated, it could become overwhelming for a nanny at first. Therefore, it is a good idea to prepare meals ahead of time that can be frozen and reheated. Additionally, stocking up on approved foods and snacks will help your nanny to include a variety of healthy options for your child.

4. Avoid eating out – Spending a day out can be an enjoyable way for your nanny to provide your child with new experiences. However, navigating the menu at a restaurant can be challenging for someone who has special dietary needs. For this reason, you may prefer to pack a lunch or provide a list of safe food options for days when your nanny takes your child out on a day trip.

5. Post emergency information – Parents should also be sure to leave emergency information with a nanny. This is especially true for children with allergies who may require special medications in the event that they have a reaction. Make sure that your nanny has access to emergency information so that she can act quickly if necessary.

When it comes to special accommodations, a qualified nanny will have no problem making sure that your child’s needs are met. However, it is important to provide support to your nanny by making sure  they understand your child’s health condition and have access to the proper food. By making an extra effort to ensure that your nanny is knowledgeable, you will be able to enjoy the peace that comes with knowing they will provide your child with the best of care.


About the Author:

This guest post is contributed by Debra Johnson, blogger and editor of She welcomes your comments at her email,

To Prevent Kidney Stones

Photo Credit: Hey Paul Studios via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: Hey Paul Studios via Compfight cc

To Prevent Kidney Stones: limit protein, sodium, calcium and oxalate in diet intake and increase fluid.

Beverages: Limit draft beer; chocolate beverage mixes, cocoa, instant tea and instant coffee

Breads and Cereals: Limit grits, wheat bran, instant cereal, any breads or crackers with salted tops, cheese pizza 

Desserts: Limit fruitcake, desserts made with chocolate, nuts, berries, red currants or rhubarb

Fats: Avoid nuts and nut butters, regular salad dressings, bacon fat, bacon bits, snack dips made with instant mixes or processed cheese

Fruits: Avoid Berries (blackberries, gooseberries, black raspberries, strawberries), concord grapes, red currant, lemon, lime and orange peels, calcium fortified fruit juice, grape juice

Meats and Meat Substitution: Avoid baked beans with tomato sauce, peanut butter, tofu, cold cuts, cured meats, hot dogs, bacon and sausage, imitation crab and lobster 

Potatoes: Limit Sweet potatoes

Snacks: Avoid chips, salted crackers and cheese

Soups: Limit canned soups or dehydrated soup mixes 

Vegetables: Limit beans (waxed and legumes), beets, celery, eggplant, leeks, summer squash


Calcium – 800 mg /day

Vitamin C – do not supplement as increases oxalate in urine

Fluid – 12.5 glasses/cups/day

Entertain the Concept of Health this Holiday Season

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

Tis the season of food, food and food. So how do we manage our health while entertaining and celebrating?  Instead of fearing weight gain or trying for weight loss during the holidays, let yourself maintain your current weight. Think slow and steady wins the race. However this is not a race rather an almost 2 month period of eating and drinking.  This year, vow to make the holiday season healthy with family and friends as the focus and these tips to plan a mindful season balanced between food and fitness.

5 Tips Celebrate Health and Holidays

  1. Focus on Family and Friends – Growing up in an Italian family I remember the holidays were about food and family. Instead of making food for 25 people, we made enough for 50 people. Instead of sitting around the fire, we sat around the table. If this was your family, start a new tradition this year. Celebrate you health and the holiday season by focusing on family and friends not food. Have family and friends come over to socialize rather than eat. You can serve food, but don’t center the evening on/around the food and the act of eating all of it.
  2. Plan Fitness – With limited time, shopping exhaustion and colder weather, our fitness routines get displaced. Since moving increases your energy, your mood and your metabolism, this is the last thing you want to give up over the holiday season. Instead, make dates with friends to go yoga together rather than getting drinks. Schedule spin class or any classes that you have to pay for if you miss. This is a great incentive to make sure you attend class.
  3. Make a date. Use you daily planner or PDA to schedule all activities, whether it is food shopping, meal prep, exercise or therapy. If it gets scheduled just like any important meeting, you will set the precedent to ensure this activity gets done.
  4. Slow down and Savor – Being a foodie, I know how hard it is not to celebrate with food. However, you can change your mindset of that of your guests too by hosting smaller more intimate holiday parties. Create small intense flavorful meals. Start the meal off with a prayer, a toast or even a moment of silence to allow you and your guests to refocus, create inner calm, and engage in mindful eating.
  5. Use Your Five Senses: Rather than race through your holiday meal and overeat, be sure to use all 5 senses while eating. Smell your food and think about memories the aroma may conjure up. Touch your food; Is your bread hot and crusty or naturally rough with seeds and nuts? Think about the texture and how it makes you feel. Really look at the plate. Is the food presented beautifully? Are there multiple colors on your plate, there should be. Listen to the food, yes listen to see if the turkey’s skin is crispy or the biscotti crunchy. And finally taste your meal!! Many people eat an entire meal and Can never tell you what it really tasted like. They were too busy talking, or shoveling the food in so they could either leave the dinner table or get seconds. This holiday season, be healthy mentally and physically by truly tasting your food and appreciating each bite. A small amount of food tasted will fulfill you more than a few plates of food you never tasted would.



Life after Menopause…

Life after menopause…
By Laura Cipullo and the Laura Cipullo Whole Nutrition Services Team


Menopause, the permanent end of menstruation and fertility, is defined as occurring 12 months after your last menstrual period. Women typically enter peri-menopause and then menopause in their 40s and 50s. The average age for menopause is 51.1 The transition into this phase in a woman’s life cycle and living optimally thereafter can be ameliorated through diet and physical activity. Embrace life after menopause by following these five tips for living life healthfully.


Photo Credit: brendan-c via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: brendan-c via Compfight cc
  1. Eat your estrogen through soy! Soybeans contain a hormone-like substance called phytoestrogen. It can mimic the effect of estrogen and have a vast impact on your overall health before, during, and after menopause. Fermented forms of soy are ideal. So choose miso, tempeh, natto, tofu and young soybeans in the pod known as edamame. Stick with eating soy in the real form rather than via supplements and bars.2
  2. Stand up straight. Now is the time to use light weights to counter osteoporosis. Osteoporosis, otherwise known as weak bones, is due to risk factors such as age, genetics, and dietary deficiencies in both calcium and Vitamin D. Women experience an increased rate of bone loss during menopause and for the ten years thereafter. Though osteoporosis is not reversible at this age, woman can manage, slow and or even stop it by strength training among other things. The act of weight training increases the activity of osteoblasts (bone building cells) and increases muscle strength which counters the effect of gravity. The effect of gravity on weak bones is observable as a “hunch back.” So stand strong—and be sure to incorporate light weights or resistant weight training twice a week.3
  3. Prevent weight gain in the waist area that is often associated with menopause. All you have to do is curb carb consumption at meals. With a decrease in estrogen, women are likely to see an increase in belly fat. While you cannot reverse aging, you can prevent a wide waist by limiting carbs at mealtime. When you eat carbohydrates and even protein, a hormone known as insulin increases to transport the carbohydrates (also known as sugar) into your blood cells. When insulin levels rise, research demonstrates there is likely an increase in belly fat deposition. Therefore, if you prevent insulin from spiking by minimizing the amount of carbohydrates you eat at a meal, not only will you be cutting calories, but you will also be preventing excess belly fat deposits. Women should use 45 grams of carbohydrate per meal and 15 grams of carbohydrate per snack as a guide.4
  4. Stay happy and heart healthy with essential fatty acids. Omega 3 fatty acids are associated with decreased depression, inflammation and triglyceride levels.5 And women are more likely to experience both depression and heart disease after menopause.6 The key to omega 3 fatty acid intake is first ensuring that you are eating the right form—the fish form such as wild salmon, trout, bass and canned chunk light tuna. These fish contain higher amounts of the omegas known as DHA—docosahexaenoic acid. DHA is the specific fatty acid studied whereas the vegetarian sources of omega 3 fatty acids (pumpkin seeds, walnuts and even algae) contain ALA—alpha-linoleic acid. Only ten percent of ALA gets converted to the beneficial form of DHA. So go fishing for dinner.5
  5. Decrease vaginal discomfort…including dryness and incontinence. Some tricks of the trade help to reduce the pain and improve your sex life. During and after menopause, there can be thinning and inflammation of the vaginal walls. The decrease in the hormone estrogen affects the moisture level causing vaginal dryness and “pelvic relaxation.” Incontinence is the inability to hold urine from your urethra due to pelvic relaxation.7 The positive news is that research from the Mayo Clinic suggests limiting alcohol, caffeine and or acidic foods to lessen irritation. Practicing yoga and kegel exercises and participating in vaginal physical therapy can reduce pain and even incontinence.8



1. “Menopause.” Mayo Clinic. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 24 Jan. 2013. Web. 26 May 2014. <>.

2. Hyman, Mark, MD. “How Soy Can Kill You and Save Your Life – Dr. Mark Hyman.” Dr. Mark Hyman., 25 Feb. 2013. Web. 24 May 2014. <>.

3. “General Facts on Osteoporosis.” National Osteoporosis Foundation (n.d.): n. pag. Web. 24 May 2014. <>.

4. Cipullo, Laura. The Diabetes Comfort Food Diet Cookbook. New York: Rodale, 2013. Print.

5. “Fish Oil: MedlinePlus Supplements.” MedlinePlus. U.S. National Library of Medicine, 04 Sept. 2013. Web. 26 May 2014. <>.

6. “Depression in Older Persons Fact Sheet.” NAMI. NAMI – The National Alliance on Mental Illness, Oct. 2009. Web. 24 May 2014. <>.

7. “Urinary Incontinence.” NAMS. The North American Menopause Society, n.d. Web. 23 May 2014. <>.

8. “Yoga, Kegel Exercises, Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy.” NAMS. The North American Menopause Society, n.d. Web. 23 May 2014. <>.

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.

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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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.


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




  • 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.