What's on our "Q"?

 The Skinny on Shakes for People With Diabetes

With so many meal replacements on the market, but how do you pick
which one is best? Taste shouldn’t be the only determining factor. It can
be important to consider the sugar, carbohydrate or even protein content.11 Nutritious, Kid-Friendly Finger Foods

Who doesn’t love meatballs? Check out this easy to follow recipe made
from lean turkey breast, which helps turn this usual calorie fest into something
a bit healthier. And while your at it, make sure to check out the Mango Tango Tortillas!

Jet-Set With Your Picnic Basket! Fun Theme Ideas for Lunch

Themed picnics are a great way to incorporate entertainment, flavor, and
even education into a family outing. Add a clever theme to your picnic by
incorporating foods from another city or, better yet, from around the world!

Also in “Q”: Remember to tune in for Restaurant Week 2012 recommendations, this Wednesday AM on CBS’s W1NY!!

 

Turning Back the Hands of Time: The Paleo Diet

Diets come and diets go, but like an old pair of jeans out of style… if you wait long enough it’s sure to come back. With the Paleo movement sweeping across the nation, the ancient diet followed by early humans is making a comeback. The Paleo Diet, also called Stone Age or Caveman Diet, suggests following a meal plan with foods people were eating millions of years ago. Although there may be health benefits to following the Paleo diet such as possibly losing weight and avoiding hyperglycemia, like any meal plan with restrictions, knowing there is substantial data to support a claim is just as, if not more important. Ask yourself will people’s weight yo yo after “cheating” on their Hunter Gatherer Diet?

Principles of The Paleo Diet

To understand the theory of the Paleo diet, we must first turn back the hands of time. For millions of years, the human diet consisted of only meat, fish, poultry, and the leaves, roots, and fruits of plants. The Paleo diet (short for Paleolithic) is based on the claim that a healthy diet should consist of only the foods that can be hunted, fished and gathered during the Paleolithic era. The basics of the meal plan are that if the cavemen did not eat it, then you shouldn’t either. Proponents of the diet believe that evolution has led us to eat foods our bodies are not adapted to neither process nor digest. Fast-forward to modern day when conditions like obesity and Type 2 Diabetes are at an all time high. Advocates claim that since people in that era rarely had metabolic disturbances, one can now prevent chronic diseases, control blood sugar spikes and lead a healthier life following this diet.

What Can You Eat?

Swearing off refined sugar, dairy, legumes and grains?? To many, the Paleo diet may seem extremely restrictive.  You won’t find any refined sugars, added salt, processed foods and packaged snacks in this meal plan (I agree this can be healthy if whole grains, legumes and dairy were included). While the diet will differ slightly with personal modifications, the general Paleo plan consists of whole, unprocessed foods like lean meat, eggs, seafood, non-starchy vegetables — and some but not a ton of fruit, nuts and seeds. (Since it is encouraged to eat grass-fed beef, free-range chicken and eggs and fresh fruits and vegetables, keep in mind that following the Paleo diet can be rather expensive for the average person).

Some foods to avoid include the following: grains such as rice, refined carbohydrates like flour and cereals (no oat bran or Kashi), dairy, beans, peanuts, processed meats like hot dogs and chicken nuggets, soda, fruit juice, caffeine, alcohol.

Food for Thought

Although proponents of the diet claim that cavemen did not develop such chronic diseases, there is no evidence to support this claim. While the meal plan does restrict refined sugars and grains (both of which can contribute to obesity and Type 2 Diabetes if eaten in excess while following a sedentary lifestyle), it is important to remember that several diets are founded on the basis that one should include more fruits and veggies, whole and unprocessed foods. I believe it is Dr. Oz who puts patients on vegan diets to reverse diabetes and there are also many books recommending this as well. Keep in mind that the recommendation for a healthy diet also includes whole grains, dairy and legumes. Eliminating certain food groups, as suggested by the Paleo plan draws attention to potential nutrient deficiencies. For example, by avoiding dairy, individuals who follow a Paelo diet may develop osteoporosis if they lived long enough. That’s another question to ask. What was the average lifespan of a caveman? Did they ever get old enough to diagnose weak bones or did they die of malnutrition or by animal attack before osteoporosis set in? Oddly, while reading the meal plan for a Paleo diet, I see shrimp, chicken and beef. Did cave men and women really eat these three proteins in one day? I think it may be fair to say they ate beef one week and venison another. If they ate shrimp one week, they were probably spearing fish the next. Finally, did cave people know how to steam?? There are so many questions that make me think twice about this theory.

Lost In Translation

Don’t miss the message here. Less is more. Less processed, more healthy fats, less to eat and more movement. Any effort to eat foods directly sourced from our earth, to eat only lean free-range grass fed animals, and to cook your own meals is the way to go. Just don’t forget grains such as amaranth and barely, beans such as lentil and dairy such as delicious French Brie. These foods contain macro and micronutrients. I don’t think a French person would ever agree to this diet, yet people love to think the French are savvy with their food philosophy.  Also, I personally don’t think the Paleo diet is America’s answer to our health crisis, but if this concepts helps you to feel good and control your sugar, that is a step in the right direction.

The Cave versus Industry

In our society, we must recognize, diet is only half the battle. Industrialization has led us to lead a sedentary lifestyle.  Cave people were fit because they moved everyday for survival. We drive and tap our iPhones for success rather than survival. Cave people only ate what was available so that may have been no food or just berries for days. That kept them trim, but was it healthy? Today we have government subsidies for cheap food to prevent people from starving, and in return it has lead us to eat poor quality, processed food. In addition, our minds are brainwashed with marketing and ironically, it is cheaper to buy a super sized soda than that of a smaller soda (ounce for ounce). So if the Paleo helps you to be healthier, by all means be healthier. Just recognize that the restrictions in any diet are questionable and not necessarily supported by science or history. And remember, restrictions lead to binging, so be careful. Diets don’t work in isolation; rather lifestyle changes that are realistic and behaviorally based are the way go!

The Weight of the Nation

Did you know that 1 out of 5 of kids drinks three or more sugar-sweetened beverages per day, accounting for an extra meal? With Mayor Bloomberg proposing a ban in New York City over sugary drinks and the Disney channel banning junk food advertisements, it’s no secret that America is facing an obesity epidemic. Along with childhood obesity rates on the rise, chronic heart disease and Type 2 Diabetes have also increased over the past few years. Type 2 Diabetes, which  was once primarily diagnosed in old age, is now a common medical concern in children. While obesity-health related problems have been a looming crisis for quite some time, recently HBO launched a documentary, drawing quite a lot of attention to  the nation’s obesity crisis. The Weight of the Nation: Confronting America’s Obesity Epidemic, is a four part series focusing on consequences, choices, children in crisis, and challenges. To those who believe that the root of childhood obesity stems from a lack of parental responsibility in educating their children or a lack of exercise, Weight of the Nation presents viewers with an all-around perspective on the complexity of the issue.

Obesity is very complex and the documentary does a good job highlighting the many factors that contribute to the issue like poverty, genetics, food culture, personal responsibility, environment, issues of diet and lack of exercise. Issues with childhood obesity are caused in part by a lack of nutrition education, over-processed school food lunches, the overwhelming access to nutrient-poor foods conveniently located everywhere you go, and how video games and electronics have replaced outdoor and sport activities as a means for childhood entertainment. If the weight epidemic is not addressed,  Americans will eventually wind up paying even more for the cost of treating obesity-related illness. As obesity contributes to 5 of the 10 leading causes of death in America, it has added a whopping $150 billion to health costs now and according to the documentary, may hit or exceed $300 billion by 2018.

While the various factors that make solving the obesity epidemic seem nearly impossible, the biggest take-away from the series is that the nation’s weight crisis can be reversed. While some critics point out that the series is “too blunt” or “too graphic,” The Weight of the Nation is a wake-up call, drawing awareness to the depth of the problem and most importantly, a chance for us to fix it. Whether it’s taking the stairs or walking to work, change begins with the individual and we can start by integrating physical activity into our daily lives. In fact, the documentary points out that losing as little as 5% of your weight can improve your blood pressure, blood sugar levels, and also lowers diabetes risk by nearly 60% in people with pre-diabetes. The show’s statistics, backed by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Institutes of Health, and the Institute of Medicine among others, shows hope that even small improvements can make a difference.

 

 

 

Outrage Over the Tube Feeding Diet

Tube Feeding Diet

Searching for the perfect wedding dress can be stressful but in that one moment when all eyes are looking at you, the pressure  to  look beautiful and feel beautiful can escalate. Now more and more often, bride-to-be’s  are looking for quick and simple weight loss solutions. One diet that has recently grabed a lot of attention from the media is the Ketogenic Enteral Nutrition Diet—also known as the Feeding Tube Diet. Utilized by people who are looking for rapid weight loss, this procedure involves a constant flow of liquid nourishment that runs from the nose, through the esophagus and into the stomach. While people can lose a lot of weight in a short amount of time, there are many important factors to consider.

Misuse of Medicine: Tube Feeding is approved for gaining weight and providing nutrition. Tube Feeding is warranted in a state of malnutrition not to cause malnutrition One can still eat with NG tubes, so why not just eat less food? There are medical risks to tube feeding.

Eating Disorders: Tube feedings are used to in extreme cases to refeed people suffering from an eating disorder. Encouraging a tube feeding diet may trigger an eating disorder.

Temporary Weight Loss Extreme dieting is neither healthy nor permanent. Weight is quickly regained as fat after extreme diets.

Honeymoon Weight gain Brides are likely to puff up with swelling once they resume drinking fluids and eating on their honeymoon. At the end of a two week honeymoon, a woman is likely to have gained the weight back and not fit into the honeymoon clothes. What will happen then?

As a RD, CDE I am appalled by this diet and find it disturbing that women feel the need to go to such extremes for one day in their life. What are your thoughts? Would you do this?

The Non-Diet Approach

Q: What is the non-diet approach?

A: The non diet approach is a philosophy and lifestyle for feeding and eating based on making food choices using a hunger fullness scale rather than a restricted calorie and or portioned diet plan. It is appropriate for children and adults.  In theory, this is the way we eat as infants, using hunger and fullness when breast feeding or bottle-feeding.

 

Q: What is a hunger fullness scale?

A: This is a scale from zero to ten that helps someone rate their individual feelings according to the descriptions. Zero is starving, Five is neutral and ten is thanksgiving full. For instance, a number seven is equal to full. One would stop here when they have had enough food to keep them satiated for the next three to four hours.

 

Q: Are all people able to identify when they are hungry and or full? It seems that Americans have trouble stopping when full.

A: We are learning that some people may have hormone issues that prevent them from feeling full. But there are tools to help someone who is having difficulty identifying feeling full. I recommend the person stop before feeling stuffed and even before they think they are full. It is also helpful to get up half way through a meal and walk around. Checking in with belly fullness is easier when you get up from the table.

 

Q: Can people lose weight using the non-diet approach?

A: Yes, you can lose weight especially if you are a late night eater or someone who eats for emotional comfort. Many people change their relationship with food and feel freed from yo yo dieting.

 

Q: Are there any good resources to help them people learn more about this approach?

A: Two of my favorite authors are Geneen Roth and Ellyn Satter. My favorite book is titled Intuitive Eating By Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch. I am currently working on a book on how to raise your children using this philosophy. Listeners can become educated on my blogs www.eatingandlivingmoderaterly.com and momdishesitout.com

 

The Vogue Milk: Which milk is for you?

The Vogue Milk

Laura Cipullo, RD, CDE

Laura Cipullo Whole Nutrition Services, NYC

Almond, Cashew, Cow, Goat, Hemp, Oat, Rice…

Almond Milk

Gone are the days of whole, low fat, no fat milk. Now one can choose milk from other animals such as a goat or from other plants like hemp! Whether you have food allergies or practice a vegan lifestyle, milk options are as plentiful nowadays as fast-food. But which option is best suited for you? Moms, these milks are not equivalent to breast milk and or formula and should therefore never be substituted for a child less than one year old.

Milk’s Muscle: Most Important To Consider –  First and foremost consider the percent of calcium, Vit D, and Vit. B12; next consider how many grams of protein, calories, and for some people even the level of carbohydrate.

For Vegan or Even Vegetarian Diets: Almond, Cashew, Oat, Hemp or Rice – look for a milk high in calcium with at least 30-50% calcium. The milk should have B12 since B12 is otherwise deficient in a vegan diet.

For Food Allergies (spec. food allergies like dairy and soy): the right choice is rice milk but make sure it is enriched in calcium, and Vit D. Be sure to get protein through food, since rice milk is not a significant source of protein.

For Food Intolerances: If you have lactose intolerance you may want to try soy, oat or cashew milk. Goats’ milk does have lactose however each individual must experiment with each type of milk to see what is most easily digested.

For Diabetes: Consider unsweetened soy milk for only 4 grams of carb/serving (Silk Brand specifically).  Be wary of flavored milks and milks lower in protein (< 6-8 grams pro/serving).

For One Stop Shopping: Consider skim milk or 1% for great taste, a good source of  calcium, Vit. D and protein. It is equal to one carbohydrate exchange being that one serving of milk equals 12 grams of carbohydrate.

For Children ages 1-2: Whole milk is recommended between ages 1 and 2 unless a child has a food allergy or has been advised otherwise by their medical doctor.

Fresh Press Pickings for April

Click below to stay fresh on Laura’s recent media adventures:

  • The 5 E’s Of Easy Eating Healthy on PageDaily
  • Top Five Servingware Products for a HealthyKid-Friendly Kitchen on MomsTown
  • Laura Dishes on Kiss Feeding with HLN:
  • Meat Your Match: Does Beef Really Kill? on Zeel
  • 9 Ways to Sneak Nutrient-Dense Foods Into Your Diet on Zeel
  • Laura shares her expertise with May 2012 Cosmopolitan readers on page 236

What’s In Your Coconut Yogurt?

 

So Delicious Dairy Free Plain Coconut Milk Yogurt

So Delicious Plain Coconut Milk Yogurt is one of the many yogurt options for people with lactose intolerance or an allergy to dairy. I love yogurt! Yogurt, especially greek yogurt and soy yogurt are two of my favorite foods to eat as part of my breakfast, lunch or snack. When choosing an alternative to dairy yogurt, you may find a long list of ingredients. Below find a breakdown of the coconut milk yogurt ingredients and what each means for your health.

Ingredients: ORGANIC COCONUT MILK (ORGANIC COCONUT CREAM, WATER, GUAR GUM, XANTHAN GUM), ORGANIC EVAPORATED CANE JUICE, PECTIN, CHICORY ROOT EXTRACT (INULIN), TAPIOCA DEXTROSE, ALGIN (KELP EXTRACT), MAGNESIUM PHOSPHATE, TRICALCIUM PHOSPHATE, ORGANIC RICE STARCH, LOCUST BEAN GUM, LIVE CULTURES, CARRAGEENAN, DIPOTASSIUM PHOSPHATE, VITAMIN B12.

  • ORGANIC COCONUT CREAM: A product very similar to coconut milk but contains less water. It is a smooth, thick liquid made from fresh coconuts. It is thick and very sweet and has a paste-like consistency.
  • WATER: H2O
  • GUAR GUM: A gum found in the endosperm of the guar plant. It is used in desserts, baked products, ice cream and other products due to its ability to stabilize and gel.
  • XANTHAN GUM: A microbial exudates gum produced by Xanthomonas campestris. It is used as a thickening and stabilizing agent.
  • ORGANIC EVAPORATED CANE JUICE: Like regular sugar, it is a sweetener made from sugar cane,  but the juice does not undergo the same degree of processing that refined sugar does. Therefore, unlike refined sugar, it retains more of the nutrients found in sugar cane.
  • PECTIN: It is produced commercially as a white to light brown powder, mainly extracted from citrus fruits, and is used in food as a gelling agent particularly in jams and jellies. It is also used in fillings, medicines, sweets, as a stabilizer in fruit juices and milk drinks, and as a source of dietary fiber.
  • CHICORY ROOT EXTRACT (INULIN): A complex carbohydrate that is a polymer of fructose. It is not digested so it contributes fiber and can be combined with carrageenan to create a creamy texture.
  • TAPIOCA DEXTROSE: A simple sugar derived from the tapioca plant.
  • ALGIN (KELP EXTRACT): A product used to form gels and films. It is a gum with mannose and guluronic acid as its principal components and with numerous salts resulting from the presence of sodium, potassium, and ammonium ions.
  • MAGNESIUM PHOSPHATE: A food additive that provides a source of magnesium.
  • TRICALCIUM PHOSPHATE: A food additive that provides a source of calcium.
  • ORGANIC RICE STARCH: A commercially refined starch derived from rice. It is used as a thickener and stabilizer.
  • LOCUST BEAN GUM: From the seed of evergreen trees, it gels with xanthan gum  and helps stabilize products such as ice cream, bologna, and sauces. It can replace up to half the starched used for thickening. It also enhances fiber content.
  • LIVE CULTURES: Living organisms, Lactobacillus bulgaricus and Streptococcus thermophilus, which convert pasteurized milk to yogurt during fermentation. These may act as probiotics and help improve gastrointestinal health.
  • CARRAGEENAN: A seaweed extract that has the ability to interact with protein to aid in the stabilization of products. It is easily cross-linked with other gums.
  • DIPOTASSIUM PHOSPHATE: A food additive used for protein stabilization.
  • VITAMIN B12: Added vitamin.

National Nutrition Month: Seven Fresh Ideas To Get Your Plate In Shape Each Day

We have all heard about the new “MyPlate” encouraging Americans to eat more veggies. We need to cover half of our plate with little green gods and goddesses of the garden. Lets put our words into action by using these seven tips to get our plate in veggie shape, after all, it is National Nutrition Month. Start by incorporating one tip a day.

  1. Add shredded carrots to your wraps.
  2. Bust out the beets for salad toppers.
  3. Use guacamole rather than cheese on sandwiches.
  4. Grill (or broil) asparagus with a drizzle of olive oil and sea salt.
  5. Shred brussel sprouts and make a roasted brussel sprout slaw.
  6. Add mushrooms to your healthy eggs benedict (see the recipe in the April edition of Fitness Magazine).
  7. Saute swiss chard with olive oil and garlic.

Visit www.EatRight.org or www.MyPlate.gov for more information.

Leaving Perfectionism Out of Your Diet

By Katherine Kaczor, Nutrition Assistant and Intern

We all want to eat right, but no one can (or should) have a perfect diet. This perfectionist mentality limits our enjoyment of food and ultimately out of life. Perfectionism does not belong at the table. Follow these tips to have a healthier relationship with food.

  1. Make foods morally neutral– Labeling foods “good” or “bad” gives them way more power than they deserve. Foods are meant to provide energy, nutrients, and enjoyment. Each food has its unique set of nutrients that can find its place in a healthy diet. Following a diet that restricts certain foods takes away from this enjoyment and can ultimately lead to feelings of deprivation and ultimately overindulgence.
  2. Live in the present– Don’t put your life on hold while you attempt to meet your dietary goals. Start living today! The positive experiences you go through will help motivate you to make healthier choices.
  3. Take a mindful approach- Take the time to truly savor your food. Experience all the flavors, textures, and aromas of the food. Listen to your body’s hunger signals and honor them. Try not to eat on the run or while distracted by television or reading material. This can inhibit your ability to enjoy the meal and reach a point of satiation and consequently, lead to over or under eating. Eating in a mindful manner will allow you to consume the appropriate number of calories and obtain the proper nutrients you need.
  4. Don’t listen to critics– These days it seems like everyone wants to be the food police. Do not allow people in your life or the promotion of fad diets steer you away from a wholesome lifestyle. Just because Dr. Oz or your mother-in-law scrutinizes you for eating a bagel, do not allow them to upset you or perpetuate you into restriction or overeating. Everyone has his or her own nutrition needs. Talk to your RD about your individualized needs and stand up for yourself when critics arise.
  5. Make SMART goals- Trying to change all of your eating and exercise habits at once is unrealistic and unsustainable. Accomplishing small goals over a period of time leads to greater success and helps ensure the changes become permanent. To make your goals smart, make sure they are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and provide a time frame for yourself.  An example of a SMART goal would be: I will eat 5 servings of fruits and vegetables daily for at least 4 days per week by the start of next month. Work with your RD to help find the SMARTest goals for you.