Posts By: allisonjstowell

Winter Hydration

by in Our Dietitan

Allison Stowell

We think about hydration on a hot day and are especially aware of our potential for dehydration when we hike, bike or engage in other outdoor activities in the warm summer sun. But what about on a cold winter day when we are bundled up to enjoy the snow, staying indoors to hide from the elements, or worse, when we are suffering from cold or flu and using medications or decongestants? The colder air may not remind you to consume fluids and you may not feel thirsty the same way you do on a hot summer day, but you are still at risk of dehydration even when the temperature drops.

Winter Hydration

School Lunch vs. Home Lunch

by in Our Dietitan

Allison Stowell

Since the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act (HHFKA) brought changes to our National School Lunch program, there has been an important conversation about the nutritional quality of lunches offered in public schools across the US. Supporters love the modifications, which are the first significant positive changes in several years, while opponents view the changes as an unnecessary, costly step that attempts to control school cafeterias and increases food waste. Some see the move toward more whole grains, reduced fat milk and increased fruits and vegetables as a welcome and important change, while others see these alterations to the menu as anything but “kid-friendly.”

School Lunch vs. Home Lunch

How to Win with New Flavors

by in Our Dietitan

Allison Stowell

Last year, I was introduced to an African Peanut Soup that dazzled my taste buds and intrigued me. Not only was it a combination of interesting flavors that was so unlike the soups I usually make, the recipe included easily attainable ingredients (like creamy peanut butter) and came together in one pot in under an hour. I couldn’t wait to make it for my family and thought for sure they would love it! With anticipation my kids watched me put it together; their excitement grew with me. When the moment came to enjoy the soup, it was like tires screeching on pavement to a fast stop…they didn’t like the soup. Two spoonfuls in and they were done. Ugh.

How to Win with New Flavors

The Kosher Diet…a “mainstream” diet?

by in Our Dietitan

Allison Stowell

Is it possible that the kosher diet, a diet once only followed by Jews for religious reasons, is the latest diet trend for both Jews and non-Jews alike? An article published last spring titled, “Kosher Goes Mainstream…” used the purchase of the United States’ largest producer of Kosher food, Manischewitz, to highlight this trend. The private company, which purchased Manischewitz did so, they report, because they saw the potential for selling their foods to a wider audience.

The Kosher Diet…a “mainstream” diet?

Family-Friendly Menu

by in Our Dietitan

Allison Stowell

Does it seem like you are always asking your family what they want to eat? It definitely feels like that in my home. At dinner, I’m curious about tomorrow’s lunch. At breakfast, I am wondering what they want to have that night for dinner. Any busy caregiver knows that answers to these questions are essential for a streamlined week with fewer stops at the market. The challenge is getting your family on board with thinking ahead right along with you. If not, you know the story ends with you preparing a meal that no one wants to eat.

Family-Friendly Menu

The Flexitarian Family

by in Our Dietitan

Allison Stowell

Last spring, as part of our webinar series, we presented on the Flexitarian Diet. Defined as a diet that removes meat from the center of the plate, the flexitarian diet has many benefits for us, our budget and our environment. Aligned with campaigns such as Meatless Monday, the flexitarian diet movement encourages us to consume less meat without expecting us to give it up altogether.

The Flexitarian Family

School Nutrition Standards: Where are We Now?

by in Healthy Tips, Our Dietitan

Allison Stowell

On July 1, 2012, schools and programs that utilize the National School Lunch program began the process of adopting the changes required under the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act (HHFKA). Though challenging to implement, the strong need for better nutrition for the over 30 million children who rely on the National School Lunch program and the opportunity for greater reimbursement per meal (an extra 6 cents), encouraged schools to comply. The transformation to come was so monumental and innovative for a program that hadn’t seen change in fifteen years, that Guiding Stars devoted a webinar on the topic. Now, two years later, we can see how the changes are being implemented and where we are on our journey toward feeding the next generation.

School Nutrition Standards: Where are We Now?