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Archive for March, 2013

Who can you rely on for sound nutritional advice? Check with a registered dietitian.

March 13, 2013 is Registered Dietitian Day. Registered dietitians are health professionals uniquely trained in skills related to food production, clinical implications of nutrients and disease, and counseling. They provide food and nutrition information and services to the public and individuals.

Misinformation abounds. Don’t risk your nutritional health to those who advertise special potions or supplements to cure specific illnesses, make you stronger, or help you lose weight. Most have more interest in parting you with your money than in keeping you healthy.

Thank those dietitians you meet for their commitment to serving you and your community to achieve and maintain optimum well-being through dietary choices. Eat well—stay healthier.

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March is National Nutrition Month. The theme on this 40th anniversary is “Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day.” What do these terms mean when it comes to your lifestyle, food habits, cultural and ethnic choices, and health concerns?

  • Eat Right. Foods aren’t good or bad, but some are healthier than others. Even calorie–laden decadent desserts may have their place in a diet if reserved for special occasions and eaten in moderation. Eating right may encompass varied practices such as regular mealtimes, appropriate size servings, or choosing more healthful selections as recommended by the 2010 Dietary Guidelines (http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2010/DietaryGuidelines2010.pdf) and the MyPlate messages (http://www.choosemyplate.gov/). To check your current eating, try a fun way at this link (http://www.eatright.org/nnm/games/#) and click on “Rate Your Plate.”
  • Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day

    Eat Right, Your Way, Every Day

    Your Way. Is it necessary for you to eat exactly as others eat? When I taught nutrition, students would walk past my table at lunch time to see what I was eating. They wanted assurance that I practiced what I preached—that I ate right. But it isn’t about what I choose to eat. It’s about your choices.

We are unique individuals with different tastes and varied likes and dislikes. We enjoy some foods more than others. But we can give healthful choices a fair chance.

Brussels sprouts were never my favorite vegetable. Recently, I purchased a container of the fresh vegetable and decided to give them another try. After washing and trimming, I dropped them into a small pot with a minimal amount of boiling water and cooked, uncovered, about five to six minutes. I chose not to add salt, but most will find a light seasoning more acceptable. I gently lifted the bright green heads from the water, placed them into a serving dish, and topped with butter. The small amount of seasoning gave me enough saltiness and a delightful flavor. If you limit your choices of vegetables, find ways to make them more appealing. It may surprise you how tasty you find those disliked vegetables.

  • Every Day.  Should you fail one day to get all your fruits, veggies, whole grains, protein foods, or low-fat milk products, you will not come down with some terrible disease. Continual disregard for these foods, however, may affect your health. Seek to include these healthful choices daily. At the end of the day, mentally ask yourself if you had the recommended amounts. Adding a missed fruit, low-fat milk product, or other low-calorie food after your evening meal could be a good idea if it helps to meet your nutritional needs.

It’s your life and your choice. Eating right, your way, every day makes sense and will help to keep you healthier. For more information to accomplish your healthy eating goals, go to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics website at http://www.eatright.org/. See more information about National Nutrition Month at http://www.eatright.org/nnm/#.UTfIljDRFy3 .

 

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Beware of taking dietary supplements. Marketers touted Reumofan Plus as a natural dietary supplement to treat many conditions including arthritis and bone disease. Although the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves drugs and food substances, they only check dietary supplements for public safety. Twice the FDA warned the manufacturers of Reumofan Plus that it contained prescription drugs which needed monitoring by health professionals for safety. According to the FDA, after the warnings many distributors relabeled Reumofan Plus as “Wow.”

The FDA found that these products have undeclared ingredients including the following drugs.
 Corticosteroid (dexamethasone) is often used to treat inflammatory conditions of asthma and rheumatoid arthritis. Risks include infection, low blood sugar levels, changes in blood pressure, bone damage, and psychiatric problems.
 Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (diclofenac) may increase risks of heart attacks or stomach problems.
 Muscle relaxant (methocarbamol) may result in a drop in blood pressure and cause dizziness. Additionally, these and other ingredients may react with medications.

Anyone taking these substance should immediately consult with a health care professional since abruptly discontinuing can cause adverse and dangerous reactions. Withdrawal symptoms include nausea, low blood pressure, low blood sugar, and other adverse conditions. As of February 2013, the Reumofan website no longer listed Reumofan Plus or Wow. Instead, it promoted ReumoPlan USA for arthritis. How safe is this supplement?

While you may not have heard of or used Reumofan products, other dietary supplements can have the same dangers. Remember, not only do many dietary supplements fail tests for being healthful, some are potentially harmful. Beware!

For more information see http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch/SafetyInformation/SafetyAlertsforHumanMedicalProducts/ucm306360.htm

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