In my retail dietitian role, I often run into folks who are trying to move from packaged breads and boxed baking mixes toward developing their own breads and baked goods. As someone who considers herself a decent cook, but not a baker, I always admire the commitment to food science that these individuals are embracing in their home kitchens.
People often tell me that they’re “watching what they eat” and “trying not to over do it,” but they aren’t necessarily sure how to quantify just what that means for a given meal or day. These individuals don’t realize it, but the reason they can’t quantify what a serving should be is because they don’t know what it it’s supposed to be. Most of us were never taught what a proper serving is. Therefore, each of us needs to learn serving guidelines and how many of those servings should be enjoyed in a day.
As a retail dietitian, I work with all my customers, including my littlest shoppers. These are the guests that are often the most excited to see what nutritious message—and of course snack—I’m able to share with them. Even the very youngest, who remind me of their age by holding their three or four small fingers chat with me and absorb my carefully crafted guidance. These little friends who are quick to show me that they know how to count to three are most excited when I show them the little green cartoon that can also only count to three.
A typical grocery store has about 40,000-50,000 products in it. That’s a lot of food, a lot for your eyes to take in, and a lot for you to choose from. Add to it that as a shopper, you are likely shopping with a “list of wants” right along with your grocery list. You are likely looking for foods that are lower in sodium, rich in heart-healthy fat, possibly with fewer artificial ingredients, and that offer overall beneficial nutrition for you and your family. But all those products…and all those decisions to make. Wouldn’t it be nice if you had a shopping partner by your side to help you “weed out” the foods that aren’t aligned with your health goals or not as healthy as they appear to be? Welcome to Guiding Stars, the BFF that helps you do just that.
We often think of the roles of food, nutrition, and exercise in maintaining a healthy weight and overall wellness, but a regular pattern of restful sleep is just as important. A good night’s sleep is essential for many reasons from the apparent (it restores us) to the complex (it helps prevent chronic disease). Indeed, something as simple as sleep is about way more than being cozy under the covers. It’s about preventing chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and depression. Many of us are seeking a better night’s sleep and turn to the pharmacy for the answer. However, we need not look any further than our kitchen.
It’s that time of year when dieting and the bars, powders, and more that come along with it are in the spotlight. Engaging in these diets, which may or may not bring the results you’re looking for, takes a bit of learning and always leave you feeling like a tourist in your own “eating world” until it becomes natural to you. How about avoiding these diets altogether this year and just focusing on personal goals? After all, you know what you want to achieve, so why not set simple, strategic goals to get you there?
The holiday season can be difficult for anyone who follows a special diet or manages a diet-related health issue like diabetes. Decadent dishes, shifts in meal times, and lack of control over the menu can be stressful for friends who worry that a brief moment at a buffet or dinner table may mean many moments of discomfort or elevated blood sugar later.
When you’re the dietitian, you’re often asked for nutritious dishes, suitable for feeding a crowd at a potluck, which taste great and cost little. And when you’re the dietitian, you appreciate the question and want to provide recipe suggestions that both the home cook and crowd they’ll be feeding will be excited about. Since party season is upon us, it’s a good time to create a go-to list of perfect pot-luck menu ideas so that I’m ready the next time I’m asked.