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health

Let’s talk organic with The Plant-Powered Dietitian™ Sharon Palmer

In this last of 4 video/blog transcriptions, The Plant-Powered Dietitian™ Sharon Palmer and I talk about  organic and what are the extra (if any) benefits of eating organic versus conventional produce. Eating organic Sharon palmer piccan be an extra expense, so buying locally grown foods can be an excellent alternative. Regardless, eat more fruits and veggies whenever you can! Continue reading

Reap the benefits of a plant-based diet without being a strict vegan!

Sharon palmer pic

Sharon Palmer, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist known as The Plant-Powered Dietitian™ and I discussed the wide spectrum of vegetarian diets. You don’t have to be a strict vegan or vegetarian to reap the health benefits of a plant-based diet. In this blog transcript of our 2nd of 4 YouTube videos, we talked about the different types of vegetarian diets and how flexible you can be with what fits your needs best. Continue reading

Can’t wait for the Super Bowl commercials!

Can’t wait for Sunday! Big t.v. day as I settle in with friends to watch the Super Bowl 2014 commercials. One in particular is expected to air by General Mills, the maker of beloved Cheerios. Well, not my beloved—I really don’t care for them quite honestly. Sorry GM. Last I remember eating them was as a teenager and even then it was with about 10 teaspoons of sugar. Continue reading

Sensa: Just another senseless supplement

Shake. Eat. Lose weight. Really? That’s all you have to do? According to the Sensa weight loss supplement advertisements—yes.

After years marketing and selling their product, Sensa was charged $34 billion along with a few other companies for false and misleading weight loss advertising by the Federal Trade Commission as mentioned in this NY Times article Weight loss companies charged with fraud.supplements-neily

On Your World with Neil Cavuto, my colleague, registered dietitian nutritionist Rebecca Scritchfield debated Melissa Francis (host of Fox Network’s MONEY with Melissa Francis) on the need for government involvement. Melissa remarked, “We don’t need the government to save us from this stupidity.” Oh Melissa, but we do. People will forever look for the latest greatest magic pill that will melt away unwelcome fat. Continue reading

No need to deprive – just follow the 80/20 rule

One of my favorite nutrition and weight management tips is the 80/20 rule. What is the 80/20 rule? Eighty percent of the time you want to be doing the right thing—20 percent of the time you can afford some indulgences.Cobbler blueberry - neily

It’s an especially good rule this time of year—around the holidays but like all my tips it’s pertinent all through the year. Of course celebrations are expected and it’s not always easy to tighten the belt. So just follow the 80/20 rule and you’ll be good to go! Continue reading

Superfoods = Super diet

Fresh-veggies-neily

Really interesting discussion on a Twitter chat I participated in recently. For those not familiar with chats they’re an opportunity for tweet peeps to get ‘together’ at a certain date and time to discuss a topic. Everyone uses the same hashtag. For example #healthtalk is the tweetchat I participated in. Hosted by @EverydayHealth (everydayhealth.com), registered dietitian nutritionist Rachel Begun (@RachelBegunRD) was the special guest on the topic of superfoods.

What do you think of when you hear that word—superfood? Does a particular food come to mind? To some perhaps, but to many on the chat it was much bigger than that. Here were some tweet highlights: Continue reading

Choosing salads because you think they’re healthier? Think again

English: Chinese chicken salad. Español: Ensal...

Why Salads may NOT be your best option

It’s not uncommon for someone to think ‘salad’ when trying to watch their weight. Making salads at home with fresh wholesome ingredients is great but ordering what I call ‘designer’ salads at restaurants? That’s another story. Certainly there are healthy ones that indeed would be a good option but that’s not always the case and sometimes it’s very difficult to tell. When possible seek nutrition information online and be informed (or forewarned). Watch video or read transcript (click continue reading).

Continue reading

Chicken Kabobs with Tzatziki Sauce as demonstrated by Cindy Kleckner, RDN

Cindy Kleckner

Hypertension cookbok photo

In the US today about 68 million people are living with high blood pressure (hypertension). It’s a serious condition that can lead to coronary heart disease, kidney failure, heart failure, stroke and other health problems.

Two leading deaths related to high blood pressure include heart disease and stroke. The good news? There are lifestyle changes that can help including the DASH Diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) and low sodium cooking.

In this video, culinary expert and registered dietitian nutritionist Cindy Kleckner demonstrates another simple recipe from her book co-authored with Rosanne Rust – Hypertension Cookbook For Dummies. Recipe follows the video.

Chicken Kabobs with Tzatziki Sauce

Ingredients:
3 cups plain Greek yogurt, divided

3 garlic cloves, 1 minced and 2 crushed

3 Tbsp lemon juice, divided

1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp fresh dill, chopped

½ tsp oregano

1 tsp tarragon

1 tsp parsley

Freshly ground pepper

4 large chicken breasts, boneless and skinless

Lemon wedges for garnish

Instructions:

  1. For the tzatziki sauce, combine 1½ cups yogurt, the minced garlic, 1½ tbsp. lemon juice, 1 tbsp of the dill and the cucumber.  Mix well, cover, and refrigerate for a few hours to develop flavors.
  2. For the marinade, combine the remaining 1½ cups yogurt, the crushed garlic, 1½ tbsp. lemon juice, the remaining 1 tsp dill and the oregano, tarragon, parsley, and pepper in a large bowl.  Set aside.
  3. Cut the chicken into 2-inch cubes.  Reserve ½ cup marinade.  Toss the chicken with the remaining marinade in a shallow glass baking dish, cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours.
  4. Preheat the grill to medium-high.  Brush the hot grill with oil to prevent the chicken from sticking.  Thread the chicken onto skewers and grill for 8-10 minute.  Turn and baste with the reserved marinade during grilling until the chicken is browned and thoroughly cooked.  Do not overcook.
  5. Serve with tzatziki sauce and the lemon wedges.

Yield:  4 servings

Each serving:  245 calories  42g protein  3g fat  1g sat fat  130mg sodium  1g dietary fiber

Source:  Hypertension Cookbook For Dummies, December 2012, John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

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What about the dads? Is nutrition important for men during their wife’s pregnancy?

We're Having a Baby!

(Photo credit: Ben Ramsey)

Pregnancy w/ author Bridget Swinney—Tips to maximize health of baby – part 3

In our third of three interviews, registered dietitian nutritionist and author of Eating Expectantly: Practical Advice for Healthy Eating Before, During and After Pregnancy, and I discussed ways that the men contribute to the health of the baby. (To watch video, scroll to bottom or click here)

Neily: I am with Bridget Swinney. She is a pre-natal and childhood specialist and author of Eating Expectantly: Practical Advice for Healthy Eating Before, During and After Pregnancy, coming out in 2013. We talked about women who are overweight, normal weight women. Now, what about the dads?
Bridget: Most people think that dads just contribute that Y chromosome. Really, their role is much greater than that. A dad’s diet before their wife conceives can actually affect the chances of his wife becoming pregnant. But it can also affect the health of his child. So it is very exciting for men to now know that they can improve their diet, follow the same pre-pregnancy diet that their wives follow— rich in fruits and vegetables, watching saturated fats. A heart healthy diet is really important for sperm function. In fact, recent studies show that men who ate walnuts daily, about 75 gm a day had actually improved the quality of their sperm and cut down on chromosomal defects. Which is really exciting that one simple addition to your diet can make a difference to future generations.
Neily: 75 grams?
Bridget: That’s just a little over 2.5 ounces. So, it is definitely a hefty serving but if you think about men eating chips or crackers or something like that, it is a pretty easy substitution.
Neily: And an ounce is roughly about a handful.
Bridget: Right. Walnuts are pretty big so a hefty handful would be 2.5 ounces. Another thing that men can do is watch the antioxidants in their diet, specially vitamins E and C because that also plays a big role in chromosomal damage. Men who do not have enough vitamin C in their diet tend to have more damage of their sperm, which can transfer to birth defects. Men really need to be eating their fruits and vegetables also.
Neily: So, if a family is having trouble with pregnancy, then not just looking at mom’s diet but also dad’s diet… that’s important to know.
Bridget: Yes. You know, a lot of times with infertility, the causes are unknown. And we are suspecting more and more that diet may be the factor that nobody has looked at.
Neily: That’s why you need registered dietitians!
Bridget: Right.
Neily: Great. Thanks so much! Bridget Swinney, author of ‘Eating Expectantly’.

 

Love Starbucks? Know before you go!

Love Starbucks? So do I, but know before you go!

Redesigned logo used from 2011-present.

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What prompted this (to see the video of this blog, scroll to bottom or click here) was when a friend said “it would be interesting to do a video on what people consume at Starbucks. Sit there on a busy Saturday afternoon. I bet people don’t know what they’re consuming in terms of calories and fat and sugar”. Continue reading

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