Mind Over Matter: Manage Your Weight Through Mindful Eating

Posted by | Posted in Nutrition, Weight Loss and Wellness | Posted on 02-04-2014

Young Man on Couch Eating PopcornHave you ever sat down in front of the television with a bowl of chips while watching your favorite show, only to look down during the commercial break to see that all the food is gone? What’s worse is you find yourself walking into the kitchen to get something else because you still feel like your craving has not been satisfied.

This is an example of mindless eating, in which we don’t pay attention to what we are eating. To protect yourself — and your waistline — from this practice, Erin Walker, a registered dietitian with Memorial’s Weight Loss & Wellness Center suggests adopting a “mindful eating” habit. Read the rest of this entry »

Teaching an Old Nutrition Label New Tricks

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Memorial Medical Center, Nutrition | Posted on 28-03-2014

New Nutrition LabeThe Food and Drug Administration’s iconic nutrition labels could be changing for the first time in more than 20 years, and that’s a good thing according to Memorial Medical Center registered dietitians Gayle Jennings and Christina Rollins. The new label will list total calories more prominently, add long-ignored nutrients like potassium and vitamin D, reconfigure the serving size calculations and include added sugars to the tally. Here are some of the highlights:

  • The new label will be more user-friendly for those following dietary guidelines.
  • Serving sizes will be displayed more accurately, enabling consumers to avoid “super-sizing” their food items.
  • Potassium and vitamin D, both of which offer important health benefits, will be listed on the new label in order to draw attention.
  • Added sugars will now be listed so consumers will know how much sugar is naturally occurring and how much is commercially added. Read the rest of this entry »

7 Slimming Ideas to Get Family Support for Your Weight-Loss Journey

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Memorial Medical Center, Nutrition, Weight Loss and Wellness | Posted on 21-03-2014

African American Family Having DinnerYou’ve made it through your first full week on your weight-loss journey. You’ve controlled your portion sizes. You’ve started exercising. All in all, you’re feeling pretty good about yourself as you relax on the couch on a Friday night.

Then your husband walks in with a large bag of Lay’s Wavy Potato Chips and a generous bowl of French onion dip. You’re going to give him a piece of your mind for tempting you – after you’ve sampled some of those chips.

Losing weight is hard enough on your own, but it’s also important to have your family on board when you set sail on your weight-loss journey. How do you get them on your side? Read the rest of this entry »

Portion Size Does Matter

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Nutrition, Weight Loss and Wellness | Posted on 12-03-2014

Food Portion SizesEating right can be a dilemma. Even when we know what we should be eating, eating the appropriate amounts can be difficult. It’s hard to stop after just a few chips or a half-cup of frozen yogurt.

Recipes that serve up to six can lead to huge portions for three or four people. Making pasta for two might as well require a PhD. And dinner out at a restaurant? That hibachi meal for one could probably feed a family of five.

We asked Angie Sebree, registered dietitian with the Memorial Weight Loss & Wellness Center, for her tips on how to maintain healthy portion size—at home and out to eat. Read the rest of this entry »

Healthy Recipe: Shrimp Jambalaya

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Heart, Nutrition | Posted on 04-03-2014

Kohls - Bobby Flay Packaging Shoot - 120101_PKBFS12_PhaseThreeChicken gumbo, crawfish etouffee, beignets, king cake … unmask those Mardi Gras-inspired foods destined to increase your waistline and make inspired choices instead. Click here for a delicious shrimp jambalaya recipe from the American Heart Association’s Slow Cooker Cookbook.

Becky Charlton Smith, a clinical dietitian with Memorial, offers these tips to help make “Fat Tuesday” – and every day – less of a plunge to the nutritional dark side. Read the rest of this entry »

Serving Size Misperceptions

Posted by | Posted in Nutrition, Weight Loss and Wellness | Posted on 17-01-2014

Portion Size Infographic ThumbnailIf you are making positive lifestyle changes in order to improve your nutrition and overall health, don’t allow portion sizes to derail your efforts to make smarter food choices. Sometimes a visual reminder makes all the difference! What does a half cup of frozen yogurt or a tablespoon of light salad dressing look like? Rein in your amounts with the infographic below.
Read the rest of this entry »

10 Easy Ways to Begin a Healthy Eating Plan

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Nutrition, Weight Loss and Wellness | Posted on 07-01-2014

meal-plannerHealthy eating requires planning and persistence – but it doesn’t have to be difficult. Use these 10 tips to help you establish healthy routines and stick with them.

Don’t skip meals.
Our bodies and brains need calories on a routine basis throughout the day. Eating every 3-4 hours will spread your calories and energy evenly throughout the day, not allowing you to be overly hungry and succumb to that tempting plate of chocolate chip cookies.

Plan ahead.
When we fail to plan, we plan to fail! Fast food and vending machines aren’t nearly as temping when a packed lunch is waiting in the fridge and healthy snacks are an arm’s length away. Pack a bag with weekly daytime snacks to have on hand and use dinner leftovers as part of your lunch the next day.

Eat a Balanced Plate.
Balance is important in all aspects of life but especially helpful when trying to adapt a healthier eating style. Choose a plate that is 9 inches in diameter, dividing the plate into sections: half of the plate non-starchy vegetables; a quarter of the plate lean protein and a quarter of the plate starch or starchy vegetables. Add a side of fruit or serving of low-fat milk to round it out. This provides instant portion control, a variety of vitamins/minerals and a mix of complex carbohydrates, fiber and protein to keep us full for a longer time period. Read the rest of this entry »

10 Reasons to Get Healthy This Year

Posted by | Posted in Bariatrics, Exercise, Expert Tips, Nutrition, Weight Loss and Wellness | Posted on 31-12-2013

exerciseReason #10 – For your children or family members who depend upon you.

Making your health a priority helps you to participate more in the lives of your children and family members.

Reason #9 – For your significant other who loves you.

Good health can be contagious. When you model better choices, the effects can influence others to move in a similar direction.

Reason #8 – For improved your physical ability and reduced risk of injury.

A stronger you is better able to tackle yard work, household chores and tasks at work.

Reason #7 – For increased energy.

Who wants to be lagging and dragging when there are things to do, places to go and people to meet?! And you don’t have to be a social butterfly to appreciate having more energy to do the things you love to do. Read the rest of this entry »

Recipe Substitutions Make Your Holiday Favorites a Little Healthier

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Nutrition, Weight Loss and Wellness | Posted on 20-12-2013

baking ingredientsWhen the holidays roll around at the end of the year, many of us give in to all-or-nothing thinking when it comes to the food we eat.

Finding balance is a challenge with all the holiday parties and family gatherings that fill our calendars. And who can resist a favorite dessert or an extra big scoop of a beloved comfort food, like Aunt Myrtle’s sweet potatoes? After all, the holidays only come around once a year.

All-or-nothing thinking leads to unrealistic goal-setting, said Micca Donohoo, RD, LDN, bariatric surgery program coordinator with the Memorial Weight Loss & Wellness Center.

People go to parties and decide that they won’t eat anything, for example. When they succumb, they say to themselves, “I’ve already blown it. I’m just going to go ahead and stay off of it altogether.”

One way to help yourself is to make scaled-down versions of your favorite holiday foods and treats. There are a lot of recipe substitutions that will help you cut back on calories, fat content or both. Then you can make your own version of Aunt Myrtle’s sweet potatoes and have them anytime of the year.

Here are several swap-outs you can try to make your recipes a little healthier: Read the rest of this entry »

Health for the Holidays: Food Safety Tips

Posted by | Posted in Expert Tips, Nutrition, Safety | Posted on 16-12-2013

Roasted Turkey With Meat ThermometerWhether you’re preparing a holiday dish or a holiday feast, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics encourages everyone to practice safe food handling and keep in mind the needs of those who may be vulnerable to food poisoning.

“While you should always practice safe food handling, some guests might be particularly vulnerable to food poisoning, such as older adults, pregnant women, young children and people with weakened immune systems,” said Christina Rollins, clinical dietitian with Memorial Medical Center. “This may also mean taking special precautions and keeping certain high-risk foods off the menu.” Read the rest of this entry »