Tag Archives: CO

Having Gestational Diabetes Is Not A Sentence To Type 2 Diabetes

78484693Did you ever get diagnosed with gestational diabetes during your pregnancy and felt like a black cloud was placed over you? Were you told you have a likely chance of acquiring Type 2 diabetes?  Did you feel helpless waiting for doom and gloom?  Erase all that script from your mind – ALL IS NOT LOST!  According to studies conducted at the Department of Food Science and Nutrition, Laval University, Quebec City, Canada results of their study suggest  you can do something to prevent it!!  It’s called taking “preventive measures”.

Preventive measures involves examining your physical activity, dietary habits, and breastfeeding.  The goals for each are as follow: exercise a minimum of 150 minutes/week, eat a healthy diet, and breastfeed > 6 months.  For each addition of one preventive measure practice results in 30% less chance of having a body mass index (BMI) >25, 34% less chance of a waist circumference >.88cm, and 33% less chance of insulin sensitiviy <9.69.   (Gestational diabetes need not necessarily lead to T2D, if interventions are put in place)

You may wonder what a BMI, waist circumference or breast feeding  has to do with preventing diabetes.  The answer is fat!  Excess fat interferes with the muscle’s ability to use insulin. The key aspect of type 2 diabetes is Insulin Resistance, which  is the diminished ability of cells to respond to the action of insulin in the transporting of glucose from the blood stream into muscle. By managing your weight, and waistline you are assuring your body less chances of lower insulin sensitivity.  The benefit with breastfeeding is women who nurse may lose the weight gained in pregnancy faster, and more likely to
be true if she nurses for longer than 6 months.

For guidelines on a healthy diet go to choosemyplate.gov

Signed by Joanne Slyter, Registered Dietitian, Westminster, CO

 

 

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Drink the Wine

I love life and only makes sense for me to do what I can to keep my chances  down of suffering and dying from cardiovascular disease and even cancer.  There are certain things beyond ones control that will put you at a higher risk, so first be aware of where you are starting out.  If you knew that your chances were few to none by following the 7 step guidelines from the American Heart Association, would you be prudent or risky with your health and life?

Before delving into what you can do, let’s first evaluate the risk factors that you have no control over.  Do you have family history of heart disease? You may be one whose genetic chemistry prevails you to have elevated cholesterol, low high density lipoprotein (HDL), elevated triglycerides,or elevated blood pressure which will not improve under the best of cardiovascular health behavior.

For this blog, let’s start by looking at cholesterol and HDL.  Your HDL, which  is called the “good” cholesterol, removes the bad cholesterol (LDL) from the arteries thus preventing plaque buildup that damages vessel walls and ultimately blocking blood flow. The goal for HDL is 40-50 for men and 50-60 for women.  HDL is not directly affected by watching the amount of fat you eat, but  by the kind of fat you eat, exercise, weight loss, quitting smoking, and moderate alcohol (wine) consumption.

Choose healthier fats.  This means avoiding saturated fat and trans fats, and consuming more monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats.  Saturated fat is contained in animal products with the exception of tropical fats – palm, palm kernel and coconut oil.  These fats are usually added to bakery products and some candies.  Trans fats is a man-made fat which helps to increase the shelf life of foods.  Look for the words partially hydrogenated or hydrogenated oils on the label.   Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats — found in olive, peanut and canola oils — tend to improve HDL’s anti-inflammatory abilities.

Get more physical activity. Within two months of starting, frequent aerobic exercise can increase HDL cholesterol by about 5 percent in otherwise healthy sedentary adults. Your best bet for increasing HDL cholesterol is to exercise briskly for 30 minutes, five times a week. Examples of brisk, aerobic exercise include walking, running, cycling, swimming, playing basketball, raking leaves — anything that increases your heart rate. You can also break up your daily activity into three 10 minute segments if you’re having difficulty finding time to exercise.

Lose weight. Extra pounds take a toll on HDL cholesterol. If you’re overweight, losing even a few pounds can improve your HDL level. According to the Mayo Clinic,” for every 6 pounds (2.7 kilograms) you lose, your HDL may increase by 1 mg/dL (0.03 mmol/L).”

Don’t smokeIf you smoke, quit. The Mayo Clinic also states, “Quitting smoking can increase your HDL cholesterol by up to 10 percent.”

Enjoy a glass of red wine in the evening.  We can thank the French for this discovery.  The French paradox is wondering how a society that eats delicious creamy pastries, has cheese for a whole course at dinner, and a buttery croissant… sometimes with butter, perhaps with a bit of cheese or meat sausage, as a regular breakfast item, have less clogged arteries and are less obese than Americans or Brits.  For years this has been attributed to red wines “health benefits.”  According the the American Chemical Society, red wine specifically contain the compounds catechins and resveratrol called polyphenols that have antioxidant or anticancer properties, and saponins.  Resveratrol is thought to block cholesterol oxidation by its antioxidant action and saponins are believed to work by binding to and preventing the absorption of cholesterol.   Keep in mind, drinking a glass of wine can be good for you, but drinking more has its own health effects that can more than counteract the benefits of the wine.

Following all of these steps to improve you HDL is a prudent move , but if these changes don’t increase your HDL level, don’t beat yourself up.  Look into  your  family history of heart attacks and strokes and it may be that your low lab value is a familial issue.  You can’t remove the family genes but continue the lifestyle changes and discuss your concerns with your doctor or other health care professionals.  If needed, medications may be prescribed to help increase your HDL level.

In my next blog I will focus on elevated triglycerides, and what specific steps  you can take to improve it.

Signature Joanne Slyter, dietitian, Westminster, CO

 

 

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Vit D3 is the New Vit D

From the newsletter of the Vitamin D Council:
Vit D has been taking center stage over the past few years with the discoveries of its positive affects on the elderly maintaining balance to reported lower stress fracture risk among adolescents involved in high-impact activity.

Vitamin D, known as the “sunshine vitamin” is found in a limited number of foods such as fatty fish, fish oils and egg yolk and is added to milk and margarine.  Some yogurt and yogurt-based beverages may also be fortified with vitamin D, however, other dairy products including cheese, ice cream, ice milk and frozen yogurt are not fortified foods.  It can also be produced naturally by the body when the skin is exposed to sunlight.  While it is possible for a healthy person under the age of 50 to get the currently recommended amounts of vitamin D from the diet, it is more difficult for someone over 50 years of age to meet their recommendations.

For those found to be deficient in Vitamin D many doctors prescribe it, with instructions to take one capsule every week, or every two weeks, or even one capsule per month. Up until the last few years, only one vitamin D2 , which is less potent and effective, has been available for prescription.   Vitamin D3 has now come on board and is available by prescription!

Bio-Tech Pharmacal has partnered with distributors to make 50,000 IU D3 available for thousands of US drug stores. Unless your doctor writes “Drisdol, do not substitute,” your pharmacist can give you human vitamin D, not plant vitamin D.

If you’re a medical professional, contact your local pharmacy to request they stock the product. If you’re a pharmacist, order the product and begin substituting Drisdol prescriptions now. If you’re a patient, tell your pharmacy today and make sure you start taking D3, not D2. The list of distributors and the information they need to know, is below.

The reasons to switch are as follow:

  • Vitamin D3 is the type of vitamin D the human body produces in response to sun exposure. Vitamin D2 supplements are produced by irradiating fungus.
  • Research has shown that the body prefers vitamin D3 over D2 when both forms are readily available in the body (Heaney 2011)
  • Research has shown that vitamin D3 is more efficacious in reducing mortality risk than D2 (Bjelakovic 2011). Research has also shown than vitamin D3 is more efficacious in reducing the risk of fractures and falls than D2 (Bischoff-Ferrari 2009).

I recommend if 50,000 IU is going to be prescribed, have it noted to   take weekly, which equates to 7,000 IU/day. Once every two weeks might do the trick (equivalent to 3,500 IU/day). Once a month is not enough  (equivalent to 1670 IU/day).

The list of distributors are as follow:

Bio-Tech D-3-50 (50,000IU)
NDC# 53191036201
Domestic Distributors

McKesson Drug Company
Cardinal Health
Emerson Ecologics
Dakota Drug
HD Smith Wholesale Drug Company
Gulf South Medical Supply
Smith Drug Company
National Drug Source

Signature  Joanne Slyter, dietitian Westminster, CO

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Can I Snack on a Chocolate Bar?

Snacking use to be  required if a diabetic was on insulin, otherwise they were expected to eat only three meals a day.  Thank goodness rules have changed.  It was finally determined that the diabetic needs to control their diabetes and not have the disease control their lives.  So what are the new rules for snacking?

  1. Snacking for Type II is not required.  If you generally snack then continue since your body is adjusted to that eating pattern.
  2. Protein use to be required with  snacks to slow down the absorption of sugar into the blood stream, but now determined no longer necessary.  Carbohydrates (CHO) only or simple CHO snacks such as fruit are acceptable.
  3. For Type 1 diabetes, snacking is usually not necessary.  If you decide to snack and it isn’t your usual routine then begin with 1 unit of short-acting insulin for every 15 grams (gm) of CHO eaten.  Assess your insulin needs based on your blood glucose response.
  4. A bedtime snack is warranted if:
  • taking Ultra Lente or NPH at dinner
  • exercise during the day
  • have a history of nocturnal hypoglycemia
  • hypoglycemic at bedtime.

So what about the chocolate bar?  Carbohydrate counting meal planning allows for any food item.  Read the food label to determine how many CHO is in a serving.  A 2oz Snicker Bar has 35 gms CHO equal to 2 CHO choices (1choice=15gms CHO), but has 271 kcal and 14 gm of fat = to 2 slices of bread and 3 pats of butter!  Instead of having your usual snack of graham crackers and a glass of milk in the evening you can replace it with the candy bar, but beware of the calories and fat!!  Fat and protein do not affect the blood sugar but it can play havoc on the waistline if you aren’t paying attention.

So how do you like to snack?

Signature   Joanne Slyter, dietitian, in Westminster, CO

 

 

 

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Poor Hydration Will Affect Exercise Performance

 

Congratulations if you are continuing on with your New Year resolution to exercise on a regular basis.  If you notice there are days where your performance is not up to par, yet you can’t relate it to anything in particular, it may be inadequate hydration.  Thirst drive is not stimulated until 1-2% water loss—therefore, exercise enthusiasts probably train in a state of hypohydration most times.  When given free access to fluids, subjects tend to consume only about ½ of the fluid they lost through sweat.

Water is the largest single constituent of the human body and is essential for cellular homeostasis and life. Total water intake includes drinking water, water in beverages, and water that is part of food. Although a low intake of total water has been associated with some chronic diseases, this evidence is insufficient to establish water intake recommendations as a means to reduce the risk of chronic diseases. Instead, an Adequate Intake (AI) for total water is set to prevent deleterious, primarily acute, effects of dehydration, which include metabolic and functional abnormalities.

The primary indicator of hydration status is plasma or serum osmolality, but not a realistic option unless you have access to a lab.   Because normal hydration can be maintained over a wide range of water intakes, the AI for total water (from a combination of drinking water, beverages, and food) is set based on the median total water intake from U.S. survey data. The AI for total water intake for young men and women (ages 19 to 30 years) is 3.7 L and 2.7 L per day, respectively. Fluids (drinking water and beverages) provided 3.0 L (101 fluid oz; ≈ 13 cups) and 2.2 L (74 fluid oz; ≈ 9 cups) per day for 19- to 30-year-old men and women, respectively, representing approximately 81 percent of total water intake in the U.S. survey.

Dehydration refers to an imbalance in fluid dynamics when fluid intake does not replenish water loss from either hyper hydrated or normally hydrated states. It impairs physical work capacity, physiologic function, and  predisposes one to heat injury when exercising in a hot environment   So what’s the best way to increase voluntary fluid intake?   Fluids should be cool…not cold.   Sodium in the drink (.5-.7 g/L) will stimulate the thirst response.  Thirst is triggered by a decrease in plasma volume and an increase in plasma sodium.  Consumption of plain water may remove the osmotic drive to drink.  Studies show that sports drinks are consumed at 2 times the rate of water.   Sodium though does not enhance fluid absorption because the amount in the beverage is miniscule compared to the amount of Na in the bloodstream. Palatability is a big factor.

There appears to be little physiologic need to replace electrolytes during a single exercise session of moderate duration (eg, less than 3 to 4 hours), particularly if sodium was present in the previous meal. However, including sodium in amounts between 0.5 and 0.7 g/L is recommended during exercise lasting longer than 1 hour because it may enhance palatability and the drive to drink, therefore increasing the amount of fluid consumed.    It should be noted that this amount of sodium exceeds that typically available in commercial beverages. Including sodium in fluid replacement beverages may also help prevent hyponatremia in susceptible people.  Although most athletes who drink more fluid than they lose as sweat simply excrete the excess fluid as urine, in some people it is retained . If the fluid contains sodium, it could help prevent the dilution of serum sodium levels, thereby decreasing the risk of hyponatremia. Limiting fluid intake so that it does not exceed sweat rate can also decrease risk of hyponatremia.

Colder air contains less moisture than air at warmer temperature, particularly at higher altitudes. Greater fluid volumes leave the respiratory passages as the incoming cold, dry air becomes fully humidified and warmed to body temperature. Cold stress also increases urine production, which adds to total-body fluid loss.

So what is an appropriate amount of fluid to consume?  You can easily calculate your hydration needs based on your sweat rate.

Sweat Rate:

  • Wt before exercise = 176#
  • Wt post exercise = 174#
  • Difference = 2# X 16 oz. (32 oz)
  • Fluids consumed during exercise = 70 oz.
  • Total fluids used during exercise =  102 oz.
  • Fluids used/hours of activity (102 oz/2hr)
  • Sweat Rate = 51 oz/hour

Hydrating based on sweat rate:

  • Drink every 10-12 min  10 oz – 5X/hr
  • Drink every 15 min  13 oz – 4X/hr
  • Drink every 20 min  17 oz – 3X/hr

In most cases athletes do not consume enough fluids during exercise to balance fluid losses, and thus complete their exercise sessions dehydrated to some extent. Consuming up to 150% of the weight lost during an exercise session may be necessary to cover losses in sweat plus obligatory urine production. Including sodium either in or with fluids consumed postexercise reduces the diuresis that occurs when only plain water is ingested . Sodium also helps the rehydration process by maintaining plasma osmolality and thereby the desire to drink. Because most commercial sport drinks do not contain enough sodium to optimize postexercise fluid replacement, athletes can rehydrate in conjunction with a sodium-containing meal.   High-sodium items include soups, pickles, cheeses, processed meats, pizza, pretzels, and popcorn. Use of condiments such as soy sauce and ketchup, as well as salting food at the table, also increase sodium intake

The overall take home message is to  monitor your hydration status.  Check the following:
  • Urine color- the lighter the better
  • Sweat rate
  • Pre-exercise :  16-24 ounces fluid prior to 2-3 hours prior to work out
  • During exercise:  6-12 ounces fluid every 15-20 minutes
  • Post-exercise:  24 ounces per pound lost
  • Possible inclusion of sodium foods or sports drink

In addition to increasing fluid intake 24 hours before strenuous exercise in the heat, it is recommend to consume 400 to 600 mL (13-20 oz) of cool water about 20 minutes before exercise.

Caution with hyperhydration.  There was one documented case at Ft. Benning, GA when a Soldier from Alaska drank 10+ canteens of water the evening prior to hyperhydrate and he ended up with severe hyponatriemia resulting in the Soldiers death.

Good luck with continuing your pursuit of a new you for the new year.

Signature  Joanne Slyter, dietitian, Westminster, CO   Interest in sports nutrition

 

 

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Was It the Mashed Potatoes or Egg Nog?

With the holidays comes parties.  Of course the main attraction is the food spread.  Recently my daughter attended an all night party but the next day called me asking for advise on how to manage nausea.  I gave her the list of things to help settle her stomach but unfortunately when she made it home nothing worked.  As I’m comforting her  on the bathroom floor she received several text messages from other party friends who were also sick.  First thing comes to mind is food poisoning.  We went down the list of food served that could have been possible culprits.  The two that stood out were the mashed potatoes and the eggnog.  The mashed potatoes was a leftover from a previous party six days earlier!! (Red flag)  The ingredient added to the potatoes was ranch dressing.  Two things came to mind were potentially hazardous food and the amount of time this food sat out in an unsafe temperature zone.  The eggnog was commercially produced but I questioned the expiration date and time and temp it sat out as well.  No one went to the ER  so  food poisoning versus a 24 hour virus was ever diagnosed.
When it comes to food one can never be too cautious .   The three main causes of food borne illness are time-temperature abuse, cross-contamination, and poor personal hygiene.   There are basic practices that need to be followed with each of these areas.The first thing is to be aware of what foods are common causes of foodborne illness (potentially hazardous foods):

  • Foods that are slightly acidic or with a neutral pH (most of the food we eat)
  • Foods that contain protein (meat, poultry, dairy products, and eggs)
  • Foods that contain a good amount of water, including fruits and vegetables
  • Any food that is served raw or uncooked

To prevent foodborne illness:

  • Keep hot food hot and cold foods cold
  • Store cold foods at <41’F
  • Cook hot foods to a proper temperature (temperature varies depending on food)
  • Hold hot foods at the proper temperature before and after meal service (135’F or higher)
  • Cool hot foods quickly and correctly.
  • Reheat cooked foods to at least 165’F
  • Keep food out of the temperature “danger zone” whenever possible (41’F to 135’F)

Preventing cross-contamination (spreading of bacteria from one food to another).

  • Store meats on bottom shelf of refrigerators and freezers to prevent f juice from dripping on other foods
  • Sanitize utensils and cutting surfaces when switching from meats to other foods
  • Keep raw foods completely separate from cooked or ready-to-eat foods

Practice good personal hygiene

  • Wash hands for 20 seconds with soap and warm water after using restroom, smoking,eating, drinking, switching from raw to cooked food, blowing your nose, or touching your skin
  • Do not cough, sneeze, or spit on food, or eat in the food preparation area.

Keeping foods safe is critical to preventing illness carried to people by food.  Morale to the story for my daughter is –  be cautious when served the same food item served from a previous party that’s over 24 hours old and considered potentially hazardous!!

 

Signature  Joanne Slyter, dietitian, Westminster, CO   Interest in food safety and sanitation

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Holiday Snacking with Diabetes

Being told you have diabetes is  rough, but figuring out how to manage it through diet can seem overwhelming.  The holidays is a major hurtle to get through when you are starting out and every food may seem taboo, especially sweets.   A holiday sweet may now seem to be a thing of the past. I’m here to tell you though that eating that pumpkin cookie, or pecan pie is no longer considered cheating but a choice!

Snacks are an important part of the meal plan for all people with diabetes.   Snacks help to stabilize blood glucose levels that can be erratic
due to insulin already working in the body, exercise and stress. They are also key to preventing hypoglycemia, which can be a scary event.   People with diabetes can eat some sugar as long as it is worked into their meal plan just you would with eating any carbohydrate food item.  Because sweets don’t contain the essential vitamins and minerals found in healthier carbohydrate food items and may be higher in fat, it would make sense to save a holiday treat as a special treat.

To have the sweet at your meal simply cut back on the other carbohydrate (CHO) foods at that meal.  The key is keeping the amount of carbohydrates the same. An example is swapping the cookie for the slice of bread.  Read the label on the cookie package.  First determine serving size, and then total CHO. The total CHO tells you how much is in one serving.  If you eat more than one serving you have to increase the amount of CHO that you count.  One serving of CHO is 15 gm, therefore if the cookie has 17 gm you eat one cookie.  Keep in mind, sweets contain fat so they will be higher in calories than that piece of fruit you substituted with.  Bottom line – enjoy the holidays with that piece of pumpkin pie.

Signature  Joanne Slyter, dietitian, Westminster, CO

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Up Periscope – hCG Diet is Resurfacing

Bells and whistles went off in me over this past month after attending 3 different events where  friends told me about their interest in trying the hCG diet.  They shared success stories of friends who were on it and lost a great amount of weight.  I had hoped this diet had died out in the 70’s but somehow it has managed to kick start itself back into the public eye. The icing on the cake was seeing a booth display at a bridal conference encouraging brides to shed weight to look fabulous in their gowns.  No health professional amidst the group to talk to.

The human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) diet was first developed in the 1950s based on research by A.T. Simeons.  His plan consisted of a three to six week 500 calorie fat-free diet, accompanied by a daily injection of 125 International Unit (IU) of hCG.  The new homeopathic version is made into a sublingual mixture which is administered under the tongue.  It is taken 6 times a day.

hCG is a hormone found in the urine of pregnant women.  In theory, the hCG hormone is supposed to suppress hunger and trigger your body’s use of fat for fuel.  That would lead to rapid weight loss without hunger and loss of fat from the most common problem areas (thighs, hips, and stomach).  These claim are impressive, but the science tells a little more questionable story.

In Simeon’s day, hCG was a newly discovered peptide hormone found in pregnancy and thought to cause the release of fat from the adipocytes or fat cells in the body so that other cells could burn it to produce other forms of energy.  More recently, researchers say that it does not cause the breakdown of fat, but might actually stimulate the secretion of another hormone, leptin, which causes the formation of more fat cells.

This new research shows that hCG’s role in pregnancy was likely misunderstood for many years.  These studies indicate that it actually promotes the storage of fat in the pregnant mother, not the release of fat for energy as previously thought.  Several other studies have found that the fat redistribution and weight loss observed by Simeon was likely due to another hormone altogether, human placental lactogen, making the entire premise of the diet plan flawed from the beginning.

A comprehensive review of 16 published studies concluded that individuals who were on a 500-calorie diet lost the same amount of weight as those on the diet who also took the hCG injections.  The end result of this analysis found that there is no benefit to using hCG as a dietary supplement.

The severe calorie restriction, not the hCG supplement, is responsible for the weight loss.  It is not safe to follow any very low calorie diet (a diet with fewer than 1200 calories) without medical supervision.

The hCG diet used to be available only in doctor’s offices.  Today you can buy hCG injections, drops and skin products on the Internet and find booths displayed at conferences.  Warning, these products are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration.

Just like taking any product you need to understand the risks.  hCG is known to cause many severe side-effects which include blood clots, headaches, restless leg syndrome, constipation, hair thinning and feelings of pregnancy (including generalized swelling, breast tenderness and water retention, even in men!)

In women, it can also cause a rare but life threatening side-effect known as ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS), which predisposes the dieter to severe weight gain, blood clots and kidney failure.

The American Society of Bariatric Physicians does not recommend hCG as a weight-loss aid.  And it’s not really safe to do the fat-free 500-kcal diet. A person cannot meet his or her daily nutritional requirements with less than 1200 calories.

Failure to meet one’s basic nutritional needs for any extended period of time can lead to many unpleasant and dangerous side-effects, including nausea, fatigue, constipation, diarrhea, hair loss and even gallstones.  Plus, once you resume a normal diet, without any improved eating or exercise habits, the weight will most likely return very quickly and gain back more than you originally started out with.

This is a fad diet that will run its course and then fade back into the sunset for another decade.  There is no convincing scientific evidence that the diet works.  Ask your doctor or a dietitian for the evidence, not just testimonials, when seeking assistance for achieving a healthy weight.

Signature  Joanne Slyter, Westminster, CO  Interest in fad diets

 

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A Pumpkin Frenzy

 

Tradition is strong in our household during the holidays.  It rang true this last weekend when my daughter took our Halloween pumpkins (plural for cooking frenzy), cooked them down, and baked for three days straight making various desserts.  We still have pumpkin mix left after one pumpkin spice cake, three  pumpkin pies, two pumpkin breads, and loads of pumpkin cookies.  I heard the rest becomes pumpkin butter.  OK, so can tradition survive when healthy eating and waistlines come into play?  The answer is a resounding YES.

There are simple tips you can follow that can make your holiday foods healthier.

  • Cranberries – Choose whole cranberries over jellied cranberry sauce and juice.  Make a fresh, orange cranberry relish and get added benefit from the vitamin C in oranges.  Dried cranberries are a great snack or can be added to salads.
  • Pecans – Either raw or roasted, pecans make a great snack in moderation.  Be aware that a small handful contains about 200 calories.
  • Pumpkins – Eat only the pumpkin portion of the pie and leave the crust to enjoy the pumpkin dessert without extra fat and calories.  Make a lower-fat pumpkin pie by using an egg substitute and evaporated skim milk.  Pureed pumpkin lends itself to healthy cooking by replacing the fat in baked goods.
  • Turkey – Choose a fresh turkey that has not been injected with a sodium-based solution that increases the salt content.  Natural turkeys contain no artificial flavors, food coloring, chemical preservatives, or other artificial ingredients.  Check the ingredient statement.
  • Whole-Grain Stuffing – Rather than cooking stuffing inside of the turkey, cook the stuffing in a casserole dish in the oven.  If you add the drippings from the turkey, be sure to skim the fat off the top of the drippings before using.  This can be done easily by letting the drippings cool in the refrigerator or freezer.  You can also add ice cubes, which the fat will stick to for easy remove.  Rather than adding meat of giblets, replace half or all the meat with dried fruit such as cranberries, raisins, or apricots.
  • Yams/Sweet Potatoes – Candied yams can be high in sugar and fat.  Bake with a bit of brown sugar and whip with orange juice rather than butter.  Try a baked sweet potato or yam and eat the skin for the most nutritional benefits.

Strategies to manage your intake and waistline during this tempting season are also vital.

  • Don’t serve family meals family-style.  Keep pots and dishes away from the table to help avoid seconds.
  • Eat more of the salads and green veggies at a dinner party and make the meat a side dish.
  • Ask for sparkling water and lime instead of beer and wine.  Remember that alcohol has empty calories and lots of them!
  • Physical activity is a good way to burn calories. Shopping at the mall is great exercise.  Park away from the entrance and walk with stomach muscles tight throughout your shopping spree.

In our household, we will continue enjoying the holiday cooking.  Nothing says we have to eat all the goodies that presently sit in the refrigerator but have many holiday activities to attend where we can share our treats with others.  It’s time to have fun. Have a wonderful Holiday Season!!

Signature  Joanne Slyter, dietitian, Westminster, CO

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Shopping For Cancer Prevention

 

 

 

 

Lately I have had several friends talk to me about themselves or loved ones battling cancer.  As a friend I offer comfort, but as a dietitian I feel compelled to go a step further and offer my service. This is why I decided to start my own blog to offer advise and direction to those seeking nutrition counsel for various reasons.  October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and only seems fitting for my first blog to focus on Cancer Prevention.

According to the Center for Disease Control, cancer was the second most common cause of death in the United States . A multitude of factors drive the development of cancer, including genetics, exposure to toxins, environment and lifestyle. Many researchers believe that up to 60% of cancer development can be prevented if Americans adopt healthier lifestyles. The prescription for cancer prevention is 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night, 60 minutes of exercise per day, quit smoking, reduce alcohol consumption, maintain a healthy body weight, increase water consumption and improve overall food habits.

To prevent cancer, the World Cancer Research Fund International recommends limiting consumption of foods high in fat and/or sugar; including a variety of fruit, vegetables, whole grains and beans in the daily diet; limiting consumption of red meat; avoiding processed meats; and limiting salt intake. You can lower your risk for cancer starting now
with your next meal. Choose mostly plant foods like vegetables, fruits, whole grains and beans. Use animal products as a condiment and allow plant foods to be the focal point of your meal.  Aim to fill 2/3 of your plate with fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains.

 Signature   Joanne Slyter, dietitian, Westminster, CO

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