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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

My Top 3 Nutrition FAQs

My Top 3 FAQs as a Dietitian:
When people find out I’m a dietitian, a few questions follow.  And while I’ve had quite a variety of questions over the years, but in recent years, I’ve got three frequently asked questions.
1.     Should I be taking a multivitamin? And although the answer is going to vary depending on the age, health and circumstances, here’s my answer:
·      While the best way to get vitamins and minerals is to eat a wide variety of nutrient-dense foods, most Americans don't get enough through food alone.  Especially those over 50 with changing dietary needs.  Multivitamins are a great solution to fill in those gaps in their diet.
·      When deciding to add a multivitamin to your routine, it is important to choose one that is trusted and of high quality.
·      Choose a multivitamin that contains nutrients needed to carry out important roles in the human body. For example, vitamins A, C , E and lutein are important for supporting eye health and B-vitamins help support normal brain and heart health.
2.     Should I be buying only organic produce?
·      If the price isn’t a problem and you prefer organic, then go ahead and buy organic.  Nutritionally, there really isn’t a measurable difference in organic or non-organic produce.  To reduce pesticide concerns, choose a variety of produce, and wash well in cool water.  Running water instead of dunking or soaking is currently the best and safest method out here. 
3.     Should I be going gluten-free?
·      If you have an actual diagnosis of celiac disease or gluten intolerance then yes.  For everyone else, there is no need to go gluten free.  The nutrition we receive from whole grains that include wheat, barley and rye plays a key role in our nutrition by providing B-vitamins, fiber and many other nutrients.  Studies have shown that people who consume more whole grains have less risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, inflammatory diseases and obesity.  For the vast majority of us, gluten-free is not the healthiest lifestyle out there. 

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

What's on your kitchen counter?

As a mother of a teen and pre-teen, our house is often filled with friends and neighbors after school.  So what stackable items do I keep on my kitchen counter?  A fruit bowl and a bowl of pistachios.
I was never a huge nut lover as a kid, but I've grown to enjoy peanuts, almonds and pistachios.  And isn't there just something fun about pistachios?  Maybe it's the satisfying way their shells break apart, or that wonderful combination of sweet and savory.  Whatever it is, it works - and almost everyone gravitates to our pistachio bowl.  That's one way I serve up nutrition in my home.  Here's some of the health benefits you'll find in pistachios: