Prebiotics


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Original Image by THOR via Flickr

By: Nikki Nies

Prebiotics are not synonymous with probiotics. While probiotics are the healthy bacteria found in cultured dairy foods, prebiotics are fermentable fibers that helps feed healthy bacteria in the gut. The healthy bacteria that live in the intestines use the prebiotics as a source of fuel. Prebiotics have been noted to help alleviate bouts of diarrhea, aiding in healthy bowel function and improving one’s immune system.  In addition, prebiotics are non-digestible carbohydrates that allow probiotics to flourish.

Good sources of Prebiotics:

  • Fruits-berries and bananas
  • Vegetables: Garlic, artichokes, onions and some greens
  • Grains: flax, legumes, barley and whole grains, like oatmeal
  • Asparagus
  • Jerusalem artichokes

There are no specific guidelines as to how many grams of prebiotics we need to consume, but some research suggests between 3-8 grams per day.

Unlike probiotics, prebiotics are not influenced by heat, cold, acid or die with time. When prebiotics and probiotics are combined, they form a synbiotic. Synbiotics include yogurt and kefir, which are fermented dairy products that contain live bacteria.  Therefore, thankfully, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to obtain prebiotics in your meals! Who doesn’t love a great meal of oatmeal, berries and bananas?!

Photo Credit:eHealth101

Sources:http://www.prebiotin.com/prebiotics/prebiotics-vs-probiotics/

http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/consumer-health/expert-answers/probiotics/faq-20058065

http://www.prebiotic.ca/prebiotic_fibre.html

http://naldc.nal.usda.gov/naldc/download.xhtml?id=57525&content=PDF

http://www.ars.usda.gov/Main/docs.htm?docid=13431

http://www.nutraingredients-usa.com/Research/Prebiotics-could-help-combat-meat-pathogens-says-USDA

http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-and-supplements/nutrition-vitamins-11/probiotics

MSNW Thesis Presentation!


By: Nikki Nies IMG_8331

Yesterday, I had the pleasure to present my Master’s in Nutrition and Wellness thesis presentation with my fellow colleagues! With the generous help and mentoring from Dr. Bonnie Beezhold, we successfully presented on the Associations with stress: A cross-sectional comparison of wellness in older adults.  My main focus on the study was health and lifestyle factors’ affect on depressive symptoms of the two sites: vowed religious community and independent retirement community.

Background: In the U.S., we have an aging population; the U.S. Census Bureau projects that by 2050, 20% of the U.S. population will be over the age of 65. According to the American Psychological Association, older adults are likely to report less stress than younger generations, but still report stress levels higher than what they think of as a healthy range. In older adults, increased stressful life events can lead to an increase in depressive symptoms.

Many lifestyle factors, including diet, can impact our mood and stress levels. Older adults do not meet dietary guidelines for their age, they often eat less fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and more total fat and saturated fat than recommended. Poor dietary choices in the elderly can have negative outcomes on physical and mental health. Aging is also associated with increasing BMI and body fat which are related to increased blood pressure, blood glucose and lipids.

We were given an opportunity through our contact with Father David to work with the Benedictine Monks at St. Procopius Abbey, the institution that founded our university. This is a group of older men who live in a cohesive community based in religious values. This opportunity made us curious about the impact of living environment on stress and other health and lifestyle factors, and so our research question was shaped by this population. Past literature indicated that a religious community can positively impact wellness, a 32 year follow up study of 144 nuns and 138 laypersons in Italy found that those living in a religious community had a more stable blood pressures, a common measure of stress, throughout the study compared to the control group. Another study, in the Netherlands focused on the relationship between a Monastic lifestyle and mortality. In the 1,523 Benedictine and Trappist Monks, the religious lifestyle was associated with longer life expectancy. Based on the previous literature, we hypothesized that older adults living in a vowed religious community would have less stress and healthier dimensions of mental and physical wellness than those living in a retirement community.

Major Results: When analyzing the data, we found that the distribution of the data was not normal therefore we used nonparamtetric tests to assess the data. The sample consisted of 67 independent older adults aged 65 years and older. Of whom, 52% were in the vowed religious community and 48% were living in the independent retirement community.  39% of our sample were men and 61% of our sample were women. 75% of our sample was white. Activity hours or hours spent related to paid work or volunteer hours was significantly different by group with a large effect size. The vowed religious community spent significantly more time in work-related activity than compared to the independent retirement community. Additionally, we hypothesized that the vowed religious community would have higher scores on the spirituality and well-being scale. Interestingly, no significant differences were observed by group. There was also no significant associations found with the social support scale.

Depression: 5.5% of older Americans have been diagnosed with depression. The DSM-V provides standard criteria for the classification of mental disorders.  In addition, past literature repeatedly finds women report more depression than men.  Symptoms include low mood, physical symptoms and evidence of chronic diseases. The consequences can be costly and serious. A quote that characterizes this condition well states, “…everyone feels blue sometimes, but depression is sadness that persists and interferes with daily life.”

We used the Geriatric Depression Scale 15 questionnaire (GDS-15) as it’s been identified as appropriate to use with older adults to successfully diagnose depression, but has high reliability and validity.  The fifteen questions are scored based on a point system, with a higher GDS score indicative of depression. 7.6% of our participants reported depression, which was higher than the overall reported depression for older adults in America at 5.5%.

Based on review of literature, we wanted to investigate whether reported depressive symptoms differed between the two major living sites.  Our hypothesis was that older adults living in a vowed religious environment would report less depression. We conducted a Mann-Whitney U test and found there was a significant difference between the living groups, with the vowed religious group reported a higher mean depression score than the community group, indicating they were more depressed. The null hypothesis was rejected. Since research shows that depression differs by gender, we conducted another test by gender, but there was NO difference in depression scores when we compared males and females in the whole sample (p=.297).

We went on to investigate relationships between depressive symptoms and health and lifestyle factors since there is a lot of research showing depression is multifactorial. We conducted Pearson’s correlations with higher GDS scores and the significant correlations are shown here. Depression scores were associated with associated with higher perceived stress, and negatively associated with social support, indicating that as stress increased, depression increased, and as social support decreased, depression increased. Depression scores were also associated with living in the vowed religious community. The alternative hypothesis was accepted. Again, depression is usually associated with gender, but in this population it was not.

Since these factors were significantly related to the GDS scores, we conducted a multiple linear regression to investigate how much of the variance in depression scores we observed between living groups. We entered perceived stress, social support, and living environment into the regression model, and found that 21% of the variance in depression scores between the two living groups was explained. Perceived stress makes the strongest unique contribution, and is the only statistically significant contribution to depression scores when gender and social support are controlled for. Perceived stress uniquely explained 8% of the total variance in depression scores in our population. The alternative hypothesis was accepted.

So coming back to our result of the vowed religious group reporting significantly more depression based on what we measured, we ran correlations with depression scores in the vowed religious group alone, and found that as stress and trans fat intake increased, depressive symptoms increased. Furthermore, those that consume a large amount of trans fats have been found to have a 48% risk of depression due to the low grade inflammatory status and endothelial dysfunction (Villegas et al., 2011).re

These results show  a linear relationship between these variables and we cannot draw causal conclusions.  Therefore, my null hypothesis was rejected.

Our study was the first to compare levels of depression in different cohesive environments in older adults, surprisingly, our vowed religious participants reported more depression than those living in a retirement community. We obviously did not measure all factors related to development of depression, but did find stress was a contributor. For example, in study led by Fagundes et al. they evaluated relationships between depressive symptoms and stress-induced inflammation. Of the 138 participants, the more depressive symptoms produced more interleukin-6 in response to the stressor.

Another study led by Aziz et al., 2013 looked at how perceived stress, social support and home based physical activity affect older adults’ fatigue, loneliness and depression on 163 participants. The findings indicated higher social support predicted lower levels of loneliness, fatigue and depression.

Conclusions: Our results suggest that the vowed religious community had a lower level of wellness than the independent retirement community. They consumed more sweets, drank less alcohol, reported more depression & had higher body fat & heart rates. Spirituality was similar in both environments, and that factor was the biggest predictor of lower stress. Dietary practices may also be related to lower stress, such as eating less sweets, getting more vitamin D and drinking responsibly.

While there is still work to be done on the manuscript, it was a great relief to get this portion of the thesis complete! We want to thank all the participants, the Benedictine Nutrition department and Dr. Bonnie Beezhold for their extensive involvement!

Photo Credit: Highland Hospital and Fairfield County 

Sprouting Grains-Way Better. Pun Intended


By: Nikki Nies WayBetterSnacks4

I recently attended a Chicago Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics dinner meeting, where the chic, Melissa Joy Dobbins, MS, RD, CDE, provided valuable information on the benefits of sprouted grains, friendly suggestions on how to conduct a food demo and provided some yummy samples of Way Better chips! As a non-chip eater, even I couldn’t stop eating them!  While the line of Way Better chips is naturally healthier, the great news is flavor hasn’t been discarded!

Want the low down? These chips are gluten free, omega 3 rich, trans fat free, no high fructose corn syrup, whole grains, low in sodium, no MSG and antioxidant rich!  How are these chips different than regular Lays or Doritos? These chips derive from sprouted grains!

sprouted-bread1While there is no standard scientific definition of “sprouted” grains, it may be interesting to learn how different companies, corporations and councils define “sprouted grains.” Grains are the seeds of certain plants, particularly cereal grasses.  The three parts of grains–bran, germ and endosperm are crucial for the creation of new plants.  Until the plant is fully developed–with all three parts of the plant grown to capacity, built in growth inhibitors are used to prevent the plant from germinating.  Once sprouting begins, these inhibitors are no longer needed and the long term storage starch is converted to smaller molecules to be digested.  Sprouted grains are a combination of seed and growth of a new plant, therefore, they reap the benefits of both worlds–encompassing whole grain benefits + easily digestable!

Potential Benefits:

  • Increases the bioavailability of vitamin C and other minerals
    Have lower amounts of anti-nutrients, such as phytic acid, which inhibits the absorption of nutrients like minerals and can cause harm
  • Protein and fiber rich
  • Sprouted brown rice can help fight fatigue in nursing mothers, depression and/or diabetes and reduce cardiovascular risk
  • Sprouted buckwheat can help fight fatty liver disease
  • Sprouted barley may reduce hypertension
  • Sprouted sorghum enhances taste and is the best vehicle for sorghum nutrient composition
  • Reduces the amount of gluten consumed, which is an increasing concern
  • Allows nutrients to be more accessible to body and are more digestible

Sprouting is a science.  There needs to be the right amount of moisture, temperature and time for the germination process.  If such conditions aren’t met, this can lead to the preventative condition,e. coli! So, when considering sprouted grains, be sure to be mindful of best practices and needs.  Whether you opt to buy packaged sprouted grains, cook sprouted grains as side dishes, or bake with sprouted grain flour, there is a way to incorporate more sprouted grains in your life!

If you’re interested in presenting information on sprouted grains, the Whole Grain Council has graciously created and shared a free powerpoint! Download the file today! Additionally, mark your calendars for April, as April’s Sprouted Grain Month and grab your own bag of Way Better chips!

Photo Credit: Cook Eat Delicious and Daily Baby Steps to Healthy Living 

Sources: http://gowaybetter.com/

http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/ar/archive/aug00/sprout0800.htm

http://wholegrainscouncil.org/whole-grains-101/health-benefits-of-sprouted-grains

http://health.usnews.com/health-news/blogs/eat-run/2012/11/27/what-are-sprouted-grains

http://wholegrainscouncil.org/whole-grains-101/sprouted-whole-grains

Why Ezekiel Bread is The Healthiest Bread You Can Eat

http://www.foodforlife.com/about_us/sprouted-grain-difference

Whole Grains: Breaking Barriers Conference


WGCRegOnlineBannerBy: Nikki Nies

Have you always had an urge to go to Boston, MA?  Better yet, are you a consumer, scientist or part of the culinary world? Since you have to be one of three stated options, you have to attend the Whole Grains: Breaking Barriers Conference in Boston, MA that is on November 9-11th, 2014!

Need to know info:

Where: Hyatt Boston Harbor in Boston

When: November 9-11th, 2014

Why: Because there are so many great sessions scheduled!

Sunday Nov. 9, 4:00-8:00 pm
• Breaking Barriers: an overview of challenges and successes
Sara Baer-Sinnott, President, Oldways
• Whole Grain Trends and Consumer Attitudes
June Jo Lee, VP Strategic Insights, The Hartman Group
• Chefs’ Panel: If You Menu It, They Will Come
Martha Rose Shulman, columnist, NY Times (moderator)
• Cooking Demonstrations and Networking Reception

Monday Nov. 10, 8:30 am – 7:00 pm
Morning: Celiac, Gluten Intolerance and the “No Grain” Movement
Keynote: Everything You Need to Know About Gluten
• What’s Gluten and Who Should Avoid It
• Why are Celiac Disease and Gluten Sensitivity on the Rise?
 Alessio Fasano, MD, Director, Center for Celiac Research
• Today’s Wheat: Fact and Fiction
Brett Carver, PhD, Professor, Oklahoma State University
Wheat Belly and Grain Brain: the Pitfalls of Pseudo-Science
 James Hamblin, MD, Senior Editor, The Atlantic
• What Did Paleo Man Really Eat?
David Katz, MD, Director, Yale University Prevention Research Center
• Health Limitations in Gluten-Free and Grain-Free Diets
Pam Cureton, RD, LDN, Clinical/Research Dietitian, Center for Celiac Research

Afternoon: Choosing Healthy Carbs
• Glycemic Impact: Eat the Right Carbs, not “No Carbs”
Furio Brighenti, DrPH, Professor, University of Parma (Italy)
• Health Benefits of Whole Grains and the Role of Intact Grains
Nicola McKeown, PhD, Assoc. Professor, Friedman School / Tufts
• Making Wheat Gluten Free: New Research in Sourdough Methods
Marco Gobbetti, PhD, Professor, University of Bari (Italy)
• Traditional Processing: Sprouted Grains
Peter Reinhart, Chef and Author, Johnson & Wales

Marketing Case Studies Workshop

• Networking Reception

Tuesday Nov. 11, 8:30 am – 1:30 pm
Marketing Successes That Break Barriers: Inspiration for Companies & Consumers
• School Foodservice Success Panel: Making Whole Grain-Rich Work
   Samantha Weiss, MPH, RD, Boston Public Schools
Mellissa Honeywood, RD, Cambridge Public Schools

• Retail Success Panel: from Supermarkets to Convenience Stores
Carrie Taylor, RDN, LDN, Lead Registered Dietitan, Big Y Foods, Inc.
Jim Bressi, Director Food Research & Product Development, Kwik Trip, Inc.

• Manufacturers’ Success Panel: Why Positive Messages Sell Best
   Dennis Gilliam, EVP Sales & Marketing, Bob’s Red Mill
Chuck Marble, CEO, Elevation Brands
Anna Rosales, RD, Nutrition Manager, Barilla

• Whole Grain Sampling Day: Synergies from Coordinated Events
Cynthia Harriman, Director of Food & Nutrition Strategies, Oldways/WGC
• The Whole Grain Stamp, Past and Future
Mallory Cushman, Stamp Program Manager, Oldways/WGC

The best part? The conference ends on Tuesday, allowing you plenty of time to share all your findings and learnings with your colleagues and friends in the same week! Win win! Register today!

Photo Credit: Whole Grain Council 

Source: http://wholegrainscouncil.org/get-involved/attend-our-conference

MyPlate for Older Adults


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Source: http://fycs.ifas.ufl.edu/extension/hnfs/enafs/MyPlate.php

Functional Foods


Functional-foods-at-the-forefront-of-innovation-and-adulteration-says-USP_strict_xxlBy: Nikki Nies

 As consumers, we’re always looking for the best deal, option and/or product that offers the most features or characteristics.  That type of decision making is strongly integrated in what people choose to consume and eat.  If you’re looking for foods to maximize the nutritional benefits, you may want to take a closer look at functional foods.  Specifically, functional foods are known to have the potential to offer a positive effect beyond basic nutrition.  Consumption of functional foods can not compensate for other poor eating habits.

Some foods are naturally considered functional, while others are modified to become more functional.  Foods are categorized as a conventional food (i.e. grains, nuts, vegetables and fruits), additives, modified foods (i.e. yogurt, cereal, and orange juice) , dietary supplement, medical food (i.e. special formulations of foods and beverages) or for specific dietary use (i.e. infant formula).  For example, oatmeal’s naturally a functional food that contains soluable fiber to lower cholesterol levels.  Orange juice is a modified functional food that is often fortified with calcium to improve bone health.

Suggested functional foods: Functional-Foods-300x232

  • Cold Water Fish: such as salmon and/or sardines, contain a good amount of omega 3 fatty acids–may lower overall risk of heart disease, reduce joint pain, improve brain development and function; recommended to consume at least eight ounces of fish per week
  • Whole grains: such as barley–a fiber rich food that can also lower one’s cholesterol levels and help control blood sugars.
  • Nuts: can help control blood sugars, cashews and almonds are also great sources of magnesium, which is known to lower one’s blood pressure
  • Beans: Potassium, fiber, protein and folate rich, beans are an all around optimal functional food! Opt for low sodium beans if you’re purchasing canned! By rinsing beans prior to consumption can also reduce sodium content by up to 40%
  • Berries: All types of berries are not only low in calories, but contain the pigment anthocyanin, which delays or prevents cell damage.

One may argue all foods provide a function, which is true, but in terms of what the health world considers functional may have a different connotation in mind.  Again, functional foods are praised for their additional benefits to promote optimal health and reduce the risk of chronic diseases–such as cancer or heart disease.  There is no standard definition that foods adhere to be considered functional, but the FDA regulates manufacturers’ claims regarding health and nutrition promotion, impact on body and/or nutrient content.

It takes a little bit of discernment to push through the bombardment of health and nutrition claims manufacturers confuse consumers with, but by incorporating more berries, beans, barley, nuts and/or salmon into your daily meals is a great start!

Sources: http://www.eatright.org/Public/content.aspx?id=6442472528

http://www.drrodney.com/wellness/functional-foods/

http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/expert-answers/functional-foods/faq-20057816

http://www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=9491

http://www.foodnavigator-usa.com/Markets/Functional-foods-at-the-forefront-of-innovation-and-adulteration-says-USP

Choosing Breakfast Cereals


Original Image by Ramnath Bhat via Flickr
Original Image by Ramnath Bhat via Flickr

By: Nikki Nies

During my community rotation, I’ve spent more time with the younger than 18 year old population than I can say I’ve ever have. Although, I’m more comfortable with the geriatric population, I’ve walked away from this particular part of my dietetic internship with some notes! I’m pleased to say more and more children are walking out the door eating breakfast.  Next obstacle to tackle, making sure they are eating quality breakfasts.  I asked some my summer campers what they eat for breakfast.  Most common answers: pancakes, waffles, cereals, oatmeal, toasted strudel and a breakfast sandwich.

I don’t know all cereals, but some helpful tips on how to discern which cereals are better than others.

  • Disregard the health claims on the cereal box–head for the nutrition fact label
  • Remember the sugar from fruit is included in the amount of total sugar
  • If “whole grains” (i.e. whole grain oats) is listed as one of the top ingredients it’s a better option than cereals that list rice or rice flour.  If the word “whole” is not listed before a grain, one can assume it’s refined.  Rice or rice flour is a refined grain, which you want to limit.
  • Compare the amount of sugar and grains to the suggested serving size.  If the amount of whole grains and serving size are close in number, that means it’s almost whole grain
  • Assess what the first two ingredients are on the nutrition fact label.  Ingredient amounts are listed in descending order.
  • Not all fiber is created equally. Many cereals contain isolated fibers, which are fibers that are made into powders (i.e. oat flour, soy flour and/or corn flour).  Ignore the claims of “high in fiber” and assess the whole grain status
  • Stay away from advertised yogurt clusters.  While it sounds “healthy”, yogurt clusters=oil+sugar–>no health benefits
  • Opt for cereals that contain: No more than 250 calories/cup; no artificial sweeteners (i.e. aspartame)

Some recommended cereals with their nutrition breakdown:

  • Post Shredded Wheat Original, 150 calories, 5.3 g of fiber, 0.4 g of sugar per 2 biscuits (46 g)
  • Barbara’s Bakery Shredded Wheat, 140 calories, 5 g of fiber, 0 g of sugar per 2 biscuits (40 g)
  • Kashi 7 Whole Grains Puffs, 70 calories, 1 g of fiber, 0 g of sugar per cup
  • Kashi Island Vanilla, 250 calories, 6 g of fiber, 2.5 tsp sugar per cup
  • Kellogg Unfrosted Mini-Wheats Bite Size, 200 calories, 6 g of fiber, 1 g of sugar per 30 biscuits (59 g)

It can be overwhelming to rummage through all the nutrition fact labels in the cereal aisle. Perhaps, head to the supermarket at 8PM or on Wednesdays, which are notoriously slower grocery days.  Take your time and I’m sure you’ll find the perfect fit!

Sources: http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/features/10-best-new-healthy-breakfast-cereals

http://www.cnn.com/2012/07/06/health/time-healthy-breakfast-cereal/

How to Choose a Healthy Breakfast Cereal

http://www.clemson.edu/extension/hgic/food/nutrition/food_shop_prep/food_shop/hgic4224.html

http://www.womenshealthmag.com/nutrition/breakfast-cereal

http://www.cookinglight.com/eating-smart/smart-choices/best-healthy-cereals

“Some” White After Labor Day is Okay!


By: Nikki Nies white-foods

Refined sugar and bread give the white food group a bad rap, but there are many white colored foods that are worth mentioning.  While the color white’s not technically part of the rainbow, it’s still a color that shouldn’t be ignored!

Unfortunately there’s this generalization that all carbs are bad for you.  Yes, cookies, cake, ice cream and sweetened beverages should be consumed in moderation as their nutritional value is limited, they’re easy to overeat and aren’t filling.  The body processes refined grains quickly through the body, feeling hungry soon after.

In replacement, adding more “smart carbs” into daily meals will help you forget those cravings.  Smart carbs, you ask? Yes! The human body needs carbohydrates for basic bodily function, as it’s the main source of energy.  Smart carbohydrates include fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains and low fat dairy products.

The difference between the carbs that are recommended in moderate amounts and the smart carbs is within the processing and amount of fiber.  Most refined carbs have been stripped of their bran, which is the most fibrous part of the whole grain.

However moderation of all white foods isn’t completely needed.  There are some white foods, such as cauliflower, shallot, leeks, garlic, onions, white turnips, parsnips, kohlrabi, white corn, mushrooms and turnips that are great natural, unprocessed white colored foods.  The alium group–garlic, shallots, leeks and onions are all sulfur rich foods.  This means they help blood circulation, anti inflammatory, diuretic and antibiotic properties.  It’s recommended to eat at least one high allium food a day.

Additional great white foods include tilapia, halibut, whitefish, cod, haddock, milk, tofu , buttermilk, yogurt, and cottage cheeese, but we’ll talk about those at a later date!

Next time you’re restocking your pantry, make sure to grab some onions, garlic and mushrooms! They’ll keep you fuller longer, help you meet your fiber needs and slow absorption, I swear!

Photo Credit: Calorie Count

Sources:http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/truth-about-white-foods

http://www.boston.com/lifestyle/health/blog/nutrition/2013/11/5_white_foods_that_should_be_o.html

http://www.foodandwine.com/slideshows/white-foods/1

http://www.parenting.com/gallery/10-white-foods-for-picky-eaters

Debunking Weight Loss Myths!


By: Nikki Nies Weight-Loss-Myths460

“Magic pills” and “detoxification systems” that promise instant weight loss have been around for years.  In the 21st century, the market continues to meet the demand of the such products, yet many of these so called products do not provide the advertised weight loss.

While the bombardment of which products can be overwhelming, be careful what you shell out money for.  The table I’ve created below provides examples of weight loss claims that have not been found efficacious with using such products.

Instead, diet and regular bouts of exercise are the still proven tried and trued method of losing and maintaining weight loss.

If I skip meals, I’ll lose weight quicker
  • Can lead to becoming overly hungry → overeat at next meal
  • Those that skip breakfast tend to be heavier than those that consume at least 3 meals/day

o   Quick breakfast options: whole wheat toast with fruit spread or oatmeal with low fat yogurt and berries

Fad diets will help me lose weight and keep it off
  • Often promise quick fixes with food restrictions and/or avoidance of food groups/types of food
  • Hard to follow
  • May not provide all nutrients one needs
  • Being on a diet of fewer than 800 calories a day for a long time may lead to serious heart problems.
  • Losing >3#/wk can increase risk of developing gallstones

o   Safe wt loss: 0.5-2#/wk

Carbs are fattening. I should limit.
  • Carbs are body’s main source of energy
  • Limit simple, not complex!

o   Simple: candy, cake, cookies, sugar sweetened desserts/drinks and alcohol

o   Complex: fruits, vegetables, whole grains

  • Opt for brown rice, whole-wheat bread, cereal, and pasta
“Low fat” and “Fat free”=0 Calories
  • Low fat and fat free products have calories, but may be less than full fat
  • Many processed foods have the same amount of calories whether low fat or full fat
  • Processed foods that state they’re low fat/fat free may have added flour, salt, starch, or sugar to improve flavor and texture after fat is removed, which contain added calories
When dieting, one can’t eat fast food!
  • Yes, fast food can be bad for you
  • Opt for:

o   Avoid “value” combo meals as more calories than you need in one meal.

o   Choose fresh fruit or nonfat yogurt for dessert

o   Limit use of high fat/calorie toppings

  • i. e. bacon, cheese, reg mayo, salad dressing

o   Pick steamed or baked items over fried

o   Sip on water or fat-free milk instead of soda

o   Choose soft instead of hard tacos

Snacking is always a bad idea!
  • In between meal snacking can prevent overeating at meals
  • Can benefit from 5 small meals a day
  • Great choice: nuts, low fat cheese, yogurt or an apple
Eating healthy costs more!
  • Canned and frozen fruits and veggies can provide same nutrients as fresh at a lower cost
  • Great sources of protein: tuna, lentils, beans and peas
  • In the end, health care costs will be less expensive!

What weight loss claims have you encountered that isn’t listed in the table? Have any specific questions regarding weight loss claims you’ve heard that you’re not sure about? Ask away!

Sources:

http://win.niddk.nih.gov/publications/myths.htm

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/weight-loss-myths-debunked/story?id=19548576

http://www.cnn.com/2013/08/01/health/wrong-weight-loss-myths/

http://www.active.com/nutrition/articles/6-weight-loss-myths-debunked%5B/embed%5D

Nutrition for Cancer Patients


rainbowBy: Nikki Nies

Based on the American Institute for Cancer Research 2007 Guidelines for Nutrition and Cancer Prevention, a healthful diet and regular bouts of exercise can promote health and help reduce risk of the development of another cancer.  Since cancer can impact’s one appetite, it’s important to make sure you’re consuming an adequate amount of calories, protein and fluid. By using the below suggestions when deciding what to prepare for yourself or a loved one, it may help ease treatment and/or recovery.

Suggestions for healthy eating:

  • Fill up on plant based foods! Opt for legumes instead of meat some times of the week (i.e. dried beans or peas)
  • Try to eat at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables–color contains phytochemicals, which are health promoting substances
  • Choose high fiber foods, such as whole wheat bread and grains daily
  • Limit intake of animal fats, choose lower fat cooking techniques, such as grilling or baking and use low fat milk and/or dairy
  • Limit intake of smoked, cured and pickled foods
  • Moderate alcohol consumption
  • During meals,limit intake of fluids with meals as fluids can cause someone to feel fuller quicker and lead to decreased energy intake.  It may help to drink fluids 1/2 hour before or after meals
  • If strong smells cause irritation, perhaps, try cold foods as they often don’t have as strong of a smell; i.e. pasta salad, tuna, sandwiches
  • Avoid spicy or strong flavored foods if needed
  • Eat small, frequent meals every 1-2 hrs. if tolerable
  • Take your medication with high calorie fluids
  •  No matter the time of day, encourage eating

While cancer research continues to make new developments on a regular basis, make sure to do your part in living as healthy of a life as possible!

Sources:http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140526101503.htm

http://www.webmd.com/cancer/nutrition-cancer-12/default.htm

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/cancer/in-depth/cancer/art-20045046

http://cancer.stanford.edu/information/nutritionAndCancer/during/

http://www.cancer.org/treatment/survivorshipduringandaftertreatment/nutritionforpeoplewithcancer/nutritionforthepersonwithcancer/index

http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/supportivecare/nutrition/patient

http://www.nutritioncaremanual.org/vault/2440/web/files/OralHealth_AfterCancerTreatment.pdf

http://www.pcrm.org/good-medicine/2005/summer/tips-from-the-cancer-project-the-nutrition-rainbow