crinkled oranges

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Winter Chili Ideas

It's getting cold outside!  Consider making a soup or a chili which you can keep in the freezer for a no-prep lunch or dinner down the road.  Make heartier with less meat by using beans and/or winter squashes for color, flavor, and added fiber and vitamin A.  Put in individual containers and you are set for days.  Try these filling heart healthy Chili recipes from Cooking Light Magazine.

Turkey and Bean Chili


  • 1 cup prechopped red onion
  • 1/3 cup chopped seeded poblano pepper (about 1)
  • 1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
  • 1 1/4 pounds ground turkey
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt 
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • (19-ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained 
  • (14-ounce) can fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth 
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • lime wedges
  • Preparation 1. Heat a large saucepan over medium heat. Add first 4 ingredients; cook for 6 minutes or until turkey is done, stirring frequently to crumble. Stir in chili powder and next 8 ingredients (through broth); bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes. Stir in cilantro. Serve with lime wedges.
Tip: To save time, chop off the top of a washed cilantro bunch rather than picking individual leaves. The thin stems toward the top are very tender.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Water your body!

Are you drinking enough fluids?  How many of us have jobs where we do not have enough time to run to the restroom?  Be careful to not succumb to drinking enough fluids, as it helps us remove harmful wastes and toxins.  Water really is the foundation of life!  Being dehydrated can zap our energy and give us headaches.  Thirst is also often mistaken for hunger, and therefore if we are dehydrated we may think we're hungry, possibly taking in food calories.   No, not everyone needs exactly 8 glasses of water each day.  While the 8 glasses per day is not right for everyone, keeping hydrated will help deliver essential nutrients where your body needs them most.  The amount of fluids we need vary depending on activity level, environment, health condition and age, however a good rule of thumb is drinking half your weight in kilograms (divide your weight in pounds by 2.2) as ounces. Another rule of thumb is taking your calorie amount per day and turning this into mL of fluid.

I like to gage fluid intake by urine color.  If your urine looks like apple juice then it's very likely you need more fluids.  Aim for a light lemonade color instead of a darker color.  Keep in mind that some supplements (e.g.: B multivitamin) or medications can often alter this color if you take them regularly.  Need a reminder?  There are many free smartphone applications which remind us throughout the day to drink water.  Try them and see if this help should you need that extra push. 

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

What are the main differences in Nutritionist and Registered Dietitian?

I often am asked "are you a nutritionalist, a nutritionist, or whichever it is?"  Well, I must break this down slowly.  Let's take the term nutritionalist out of this question, as the correct term is nutritionist.  There are differences in Nutritionist and Registered Dietitian (RD) however.  

A Nutritionist is someone who has studied nutrition extensively and is an expert in the area of human nutrition.  In the United States, there is state by state regulation as to who can proclaim themselves a Nutritionist and practice within this area of science.   The use of dietitian and nutritionist is often used in a similar manner, however the terms are not interchangeable.  

The Registered Dietitian is a national credential,  legally denoting individuals who have a minimum of a Bachelor's degree in nutrition and/or dietetics and have successfully completed the 1200 supervised practice hours and completed the board examination set forth by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND).  Almost half RDs practicing have advanced degrees, and specialize in very specific areas of nutrition.  An RD is the only professional title who can legally provide Medical Nutrition Therapy (MNT) in the United States.  

The bottom line: all Registered Dietitians are nutritionists but not all nutritionists are RDs.  Be careful about who is providing you with your nutrition information!  While there are many people practicing wellness who have been formally educated in the area of nutrition, not all nutritionists have received enough to be the experts in their area.  In fact, many so-called "nutritionists"have little formal education or training in evidenced based nutrition practice.  

Whether you are seeking nutrition services in the Miami area or elsewhere, ask yourself "what specific education and experience does this individual hold that makes them qualified to provide nutrition recommendations to me?"  Also, you may want to take a look at how they practice.  For instance, do they push their use of nutrition products, such as supplements before providing information on food?  Do they recommend specific promises on weight loss or looks that seem unrealistic given the time-frame?  This will give you a good indicator about where they place their personal and business values.  Someone should be working to provide you services to improve your overall feeling of happiness and well-being.   

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Summer is Here and Grilling is ON!!

Father's Day may be over but the grilling season has just begun!  This season add colorful vegetables and even fruits to your barbecue to add taste and added nutrition to your meals.  If you are going to grill red meats and poultry, use marinades or spice rubs.  Marinating has been shown to reduce cancerous compound formations by over 90%.  Find out the scoop at below for additional tips and recipes.

For your desserts, consider using grilled fruit.  It is a healthy and delicious alternative to baked goods and so easy to do.  Most fruits can cook in less than 15 minutes.  When grilling fruit, the natural sugars are extracted to the surface and caramelize, lending a richness that often produces its own syrup.  Try using a liqueur (like grand marnier or brandy) or juice and light butter combination for added crispiness and texture.

Grilled Mixed Fruit (Serves 6)

2 ripe bananas
2 ripe peaches
1-pound container of strawberries
3 tbsp light butter or margarine
Tablespoon of sugar

Peel the bananas. Rinse the peaches and strawberries; pat dry. Slice the peaches into quarters (make sure they are big enough to put straight on the grill). Cut off tops of the strawberries.
Place the strawberries on aluminum foil. Sprinkle with sugar and wrap. Put some butter on each banana and on each peach slice.
Place all of the fruit on the grill. Monitor the fire. If the flames get too high, place cover on the grill. Cook until there are visible grill marks or black crisps. Depending on the heat, do not cook longer than 15 minutes.
Bananas take the least amount of time and are usually done in about 10 minutes. Strawberries take the longest. Remove fruit as soon as it's done. Cover until ready to serve.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Quote of the day

"You can't expect to look like a million bucks if you eat from the dollar menu" -unknown

Friday, May 3, 2013

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Happy Cinco de Mayo! Between your drinks this weekend have some seltzer or water with citrus slices to help reduce calories consumed, keep you hydrated, and keep you on track of making the best choice possible.

Try these which are lower in calories and fat.  Be careful not to over do it!

Better drink choices for Cinco de Mayo

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Omega 3's may slow proliferation of Breast Cancer tumor cells

Interesting information from Medical News Today

Omega-3 fatty acids, as well as their metabolite products, stop or slow the proliferation of triple-negative breast cancer cells better than cells from luminal types of cancer, researchers from Fox Chase Cancer Center reported at the AACR Annual Meeting 2013.

The scientists explained that omega-3 fatty acids work against all cancerous cell types, but were seen to be much more effective against the triple-negative cell lines. Proliferation in those types of cells was reduced by as much as 90%.

Sardines, tuna, trout, salmon (oily fish), flax and hemp are examples of foods rich in omega-3s. Several studies have already demonstrated their benefits in undermining the critical mechanisms in cancer cells, specifically those responsible for apoptosis (programmed cell death) and proliferation. Thomas J. Pogash explained that the team's finding underscores the vital role that compounds commonly found in our foods play in fighting off cancer.

Pogash said:

"Diet can play a critical role in breast cancer prevention. When you compare a western diet to a mediterranean diet, which has more omega-3s, you see less cancer in the mediterranean diet. They eat much more fish."

Breast cancers are not all the same; they differ at molecular levels. That is why patients do not all respond the same to treatments.

Experts categorize breast cancer tumors into four distinct groups:
  • Luminal A
  • Luminal B
  • In Luminal A and B, the luminal cells that line the milk ducts have estrogen and progesterone receptors. These patients generally have better prognoses.

  • Tumors that test positive for the HER3 receptor
  • Triple-negative tumors - these lack receptors for estrogen, progesterone and HER2/neu (a protein). For patients with this type of breast cancer, treatments with trastuzumab, which disrupts the HER2 receptor, and tamoxifen, which targets the estrogen receptor, do not work.
Dr. Jose Russo wrote that there are no currently available targeted therapies for women with triple-negative breast cancer. Standard care for early stage disease involves combination chemotherapies.

Russo said:

"This type of cancer, which is found more frequently in Latina and African-American women, is highly aggressive and has a low survival rate. There is not any specific treatment for it."

When a cancerous cell digests omega-3 fatty acids, they are broken down into metabolites (smaller molecules). The team wanted to determine what the effect might be of large omega-3 parent molecules, as well as their metabolic derivatives, on three luminal cell lines and seven basal-type triple-negative cell lines.

The scientists found that omega-3 and its metabolites undermine proliferation in all cell lines. However, they were dramatically more effective in inhibiting proliferation in the triple-negative cell lines.

They also found that the omega-3 metabolites reduced motility by 20% to 60% in triple-negative basal cell lines.

This study is being funded by the Komen Foundation and is part of a consortium between Fox Chase Cancer Center and Pennsylvania State University. The lead researchers are Dr. Jose Russo (at Fox Chase) and Dr. Andrea Manni (at Penn State).

Russo and team are currently working on the role of epigenetic events in the mechanism of cell transformation. They are also involved in another project which is looking at the potential action of peptides of the hormone hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) on breast cancer prevention.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Which diets measure up?

Eat Right for Your Blood Type, The China Study, The Intermittent Fasting Diet?  There are so many choices out there.  The American Institute for Cancer Research explains:

Saturday, March 30, 2013

A Healthy Easter Brunch

Planning on attending an Easter Brunch tomorrow?  Do it the healthier way and feel good enough to even exercise and get outside in some sunshine this Sunday.  Read on for some good tips on skimming down at brunch.  Ohhh, and do your teeth a favor and skip the jelly beans.  If you must indulge in something sweet, a little chocolate (especially dark!) is the best option besides fresh fruit.