Friday, October 26, 2007

Halloween Treats for Children with Autism!

    The CDC’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network released data in 2007 that found about 1 in 150 (8-year-old) children in multiple areas of the United States had an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The number of diagnosed cases of autism is on the rise; the reason(s) for this is unclear. Autism knows no racial, ethnic or social boundaries. Family income, lifestyle, and educational levels do not appear to affect the chance of occurrence.

    Fortunately, dietary changes can make a significant change in people with autism. Research is profound on the positive impact that a gluten and casein free diet can make on children with autism. Gluten and/or casein free diet has been implemented to reduce autistic behavior, in addition to special education, since the early eighties {Autism, Vol. 3, No. 1, 45-65 (1999)}. The scientific studies include both groups of participants as well as individuals, and beneficial results are reported; “reduction of autistic behavior, increased social and communicative skills, and reappearance of autistic traits after the diet has been broken, {Autism, Vol. 3, No. 1, 45-65 (1999)}. Researchers have found that psychoactive peptides from improperly digested casein (milk) or gluten-based (wheat) foods affect brain function in some individuals with autism. Many children who have problems with cow’s milk also react to soy protein, so try rice milk or almond milk in cooking, cereals, etc.

    To increase the variety of foods a child with autism can consume, you need to know what foods that child is allergic or intolerant to, so that dietary restrictions are not made unnecessarily. Testing for food allergies by a doctor who specializes in that area and assessment of food intolerances by a Registered Dietitian through food records and denoted symptoms should be considered as part of medical testing. The lack of ability to detect hunger, food allergies, and/or food intolerance can impact eating issues and ultimately the child’s health.

    According to occupational therapists who specialize in autism, strong flavors are essential to increase sensory arousal. Wake up the child's oral motor skills through mint, ginger, cayenne, chili powder, black pepper, lemon. Try adding mint extract to chocolate chip gluten free cookies, cook beans with some chili powder, make quinoa/corn/rice noodle based macaroni and cheese with a dash of cayenne pepper.

    For Halloween put some strong flavors in with some ginger candy: Here's some gluten and casein free grocery items that are great for the trick or treat bag:

    • "Let’s Do…Organic" Classic Gummi Bears Organic Candy- pre-packaged, great for giving away to the treaters
    • The ginger People” Ginger Chews Original sweet-hot soft ginger candy.

    • Crystallized Ginger Reed’s All Natural Ginger Candy.

    • Stretch Island Fruit Co. The Original Fruit Leathers.

    • “Yummy Earth” Organic Lollipops.
    • Real Foods Organic Corn Thins Multigrain Gluten Free.
    • Ian’s Cookie Buttons Crunchy Cinnamon (individual pouches).

      Whole Foods Kid-Friendly Gluten and Casein Free Grocery List:

      Select Organic Green Tea/Ginger Root/Rose Hips, Traditional Medicinals – Organic Chamomile/Organic Golden Green Tea/Organic Peppermint/Organic Echinacea Elder, Inko’s White Tea Unsweetened Hint O’Mint, 100% Natural White Iced Tea, 365 Italian Sparkling Mineral Water, Organic 100% Pomegranate Juice not from concentrate, Metro Mint unsweetened peppermint water.

      Whole Foods Gluten Free Bakehouse Muffins, Whole Foods Gluten Free Bakehouse Cinnamon Raisin Bread, Banana Bread, Sandwich Bread Food for Life Ezekiel Sprouted Corn Tortillas.

      Bulk Foods:
      Rice, Dried Fruit, Nuts, Dried Beans.

      Any fruit or vegetable, “Follow the Rainbow”, vary weekly and choose organic as much as possible (definitely choose organic for items that you’ll eat the skin or ones that have a large surface area, e.g., strawberries, apples, celery, grapes, peaches, potatoes, spinach, bell peppers, cherries, nectarines, pears, red raspberries, strawberries).
      Edamame (Soybeans) Ready to Eat In the Shell or Shelled (*When buying soy products select products with soy beans rather than soy protein concentrate or isolated soy protein).
      Juices in moderation, mix juices with 50% water, choose 100% juice, rather than sugar added. Ceres Juice, 365 Organic Apple Juice, Hansen’s Natural Multi-Vitamin Juice Awesome Apple, Naked Probiotic 100% Juice Smoothie (have half the bottle, 5 oz.).

      Whole Body:
      Barlean’s Forti-Flax Organic Cold-Milled Select Flaxseed, Spectrum Essentials Ground Flaxseed.

      The Spice Hunter Seasonings (Choose organic), Simply Organic Seasonings and extracts, Whole Pantry Organic Spices, 365 Organic Vanilla Extract, Organic Frontier Natural Flavors Alcohol Free Mint Flavor, Sweet Cactus Farms Organic Agave Nectar, Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Blue Agave, Shady Maple Farms Organic Pure Maple Syrup, 365 Organic Maple Syrup, Rapadura Organic Whole Cane Sugar, Maranatha Organic Peanut Butter, Fiordifrutta 100% Organic Fruit Spread, 365/Maranatha Organic Almond Butter, Eden Organic Apple Butter Spread.

      Baking Products:
      Cherrybrook Kitchen Gluten Free Dreams Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix, 365 Gluten Free Products: Cake Mix, Pizza Crust Mix, Pancake and Waffle Mix, All-Purpose Baking Mix, Corn Bread and Muffin Mix, Sandwich Bread Mix, Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Mixes, Arrowhead Mills Gluten Free Mixes, Bob’s Red Mill Xanthan Gum (great gluten free zucchini bread recipe on the back), Scharffen Berger Natural Cocoa Powder (*Cocoa increases immunity!), 365 Chocolate Chips, Bob’s Red Mill brand powdered egg whites.

      Cereals: (Choose >5 gram fiber and <30>5 years)}:, Lightly Salted Dry Roasted Peanuts (common allergen: test if allergic to peanuts), Flavor Tree Snack Foods Deluxe Roasted Salted Mixed Nuts (No peanuts), Raw Sunflower Seeds, Raw Pistachio Nutmeats Halves and Pieces, Raw Pumpkin Seeds, Raw Almonds
      Raw Walnuts Halves and Pieces, Health Best All Raw Nuts & Seeds (except Brazil nuts, Cashews, and Macadamia – are too high in saturated fat), Health Best Dried Fruits (Choose unsulphered, and no sugar added), “Dr. Soy” Soy Nuts
      Pavich Organic Raisins, Whole Kids Organic Thompson Seedless Raisins
      Organic Dried Fruit Cranberries, Harvest Organic Hunza Dried Pomegranates
      Dried Blueberries Sweetened with Apple Juice, Stretch Island Fruit Leather 100% Fruit Snack.




      Powdered egg whites (available at Whole Foods, in the baking section, Bob’s Red Mill brand)
      1 small banana
      ½ cup strawberries
      1 cup frozen blueberries
      ½ cup fruit of your choice (e.g. frozen peaches, mixed berries, or cherries)
      ½ cup of rice yogurt
      4 cups of organic enriched rice milk
      Optional –for added fiber and omega-3 essential fatty acids, stir in a Tablespoon of ground flaxseed (try Spectrum Essentials organic ground flaxseed) to the cup you drink, so it doesn’t get rancid, you need to drink it right away.
      Directions: In a blender, put all ingredients together. If you like a thinner shake, add water and use less milk. Put the top on the blender, chop, blend, and whip. You’re all set for an energizing breakfast or snack. Add a small bowl of cereal {e.g., Puffins or Gluten Free Oats (Bob’s Red Mill)} with the shake for even more sustainable energy. Make this shake the night before, keep it in the blender and store it in the refrigerator. The next morning, just press whip, and you’ve got a quick and easy “on-the-go” energizer.

      Serving size: 1.5 cups
      Total servings: ~4
      Nutrition Analysis per serving:
      239 Calories, 31 grams Carbohydrates, 16 grams Protein, 6 grams Fat



      1 package of macaroni (quinoa/corn based), cooked
      2 Tablespoons “Earth Balance” margarine (no hydrogenated oils)
      1 ½ Tablespoons organic rice/quinoa flour
      2 cups plain, unsweetened rice milk
      Salt - pinch
      Freshly ground pepper - pinch
      Cayenne pepper – pinch (optional)
      ½ cup grated mozzarella rice cheese (casein and lactose free)
      ½ cup grated sharp cheddar rice cheese (casein and lactose free)

      Directions: Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Melt the margarine in a saucepan. Stir in the flour and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the paste cooks and bubbles a bit (it will be a medium thickness), don’t let it brown-about 2 minutes. Add the rice milk, continuing to stir as the sauce thickens. Bring to a boil. (Trick: If the sauce doesn’t thicken, then in a cup make a mixture of a ½ tablespoon of flour and 2 tablespoons of cold water that is thin liquid, no bumps, then slowly add to your sauce until the sauce is just the thickness you want). Add salt, pepper, cayenne pepper to taste, and stir in grated rice cheese, lower the heat, and cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes more. Remove from the heat, stir in cooked macaroni (To cool this sauce for later use, cover it with wax paper).
      Another option: Add a 6-ounce can of skinless, boneless, Wild Alaskan salmon for more protein.
      Total servings: ~4
      Nutrition Analysis per serving:
      231 Calories, 20 grams Carbohydrates, 15 grams Protein, 9 grams Fat


      1 (15 ounce) can of organic black beans, rinsed and drained
      1 (14.5 ounce) can of Mexican-style or Italian-style (your choice) stewed tomatoes
      1 ½ cups cooked brown rice
      1 clove garlic, minced
      1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 cup)
      1 teaspoon expeller pressed safflower oil (for high heat)
      1 ounce rice cheese (lactose and casein free)

      Directions: In a medium saucepan, sauté ½ cup onion and garlic in oil until the onions are translucent and the garlic in tender not brown. Stir in the drained beans and undrained stewed tomatoes. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to simmer. Cover pan and simmer for 5 minutes. Turn off heat and stir in rice cheese into mixture to melt. To serve, mound rice on individual plates; make a well in the centers. Spoon black bean mixture into centers. Add steamed vegetables on the side to make an optimally balanced meal. Serves: 4

      * Another option is to make a pasta primavera with beans by mixing beans (Italian white kidney beans or small white beans) with Italian Style stewed tomatoes and steamed vegetables of your choice, e.g., zucchini, spinach, yellow squash, red bell peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, etc. over quinoa or rice pasta (rotelle or penne), and melt shredded rice cheese on top.

      References for more recipes and ideas for autism:

      The Kid-Friendly ADHD and Autism Cookbook: The Ultimate Guide to the Gluten-Free, Casein-Free Diet (Hardcover)by Pamela Compart (Author), Dana Laake (Author)

      The Kid-Friendly Food Allergy Cookbook: More Than 150 Recipes That Are Wheat-Free, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Nut-Free, Egg-Free, and Low in Sugar by Leslie Hammond

      Int'l Fdtn for Functional Gastrointestinal DisordersP.O. Box 170864Milwaukee, WI 53217414-964-1799

      Gluten Intolerance Group of North America31214 124th Ave. SEAuburn, WA 98092

      American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology555 East Wells StreetMilwaukee, WI 53202800-822-2762

      Living Without is a lifestyle guide for people with allergies and foodsensitivities. It discusses a variety of health-related issues, and providessupport, encouragement, guidance and resources.

      Allergy Grocer Fully Stocked Kosher Parve & Gluten Free Certified

    Thursday, October 25, 2007

    A New Year, A New You!

    I. Introduction: What does balanced eating really mean?

    • To achieve balanced nutrition: At every meal and snack you eat, have a balance of macronutrients- protein, carbohydrate, and fat to provide sustainable energy. Aim for ~50% of calories from carbohydrate (choose whole grains, fruit, and green leafy vegetables most often); ~20% to 25% from protein; 25% to 30% from fat (<10%>
    • If you wait longer than 5 hours to eat, your metabolism slows down, your body gets into a hibernation mode and thinks that you’re living during a famine, therefore you store more fat.
    • Eat optimally balanced meals and snacks, within an hour to 1 ½ hours after waking and every 4 hours throughout the day, maximum is 5 hours, to keep your sugar levels stable, increase your metabolism, help prevent fat storage, and to be energized all day!
      *Bottom Line for knowing how much to eat: Be “in tune” with your hunger level, listen to your body! Your body knows how much it needs!

    II. Food Label Focus: To know if it’s an optimal food to bring home- Look at 3 main items.

    1. Fat

    • Follow Deborah’s “3 rule” to choose low-fat foods! Look on a food label for the total grams of fat; multiply that by 3, add a 0 at the end or move the decimal place over to the right. Compare that number with the total calories, if less than the total calories, it’s less than 30% calories from fat = LOW-FAT. Example: 5 grams of fat, 180 calorie food, 5 X 3 = 15, add a 0, = 150, 150<180>

    2. Fiber is your best friend for increased satisfaction, high fiber foods give you more for your chew!

    • Aim for 3 grams or more of dietary fiber per slice of bread/per snack-for example, crackers, sports bars, and 5 or more grams per serving of cereal or per meal.
    • High fiber starches include: whole-wheat couscous, sprouted grain bread, oatmeal, quinoa, amaranth, barley, bulgur, brown rice, yams, or winter squash
    • High fiber fruits: S or S fruits (edible skin or edible seeds fruit): e.g.,apples, strawberries, blueberries or oranges (get bioflavonoids and fiber from the white part of the orange)
    • High fiber vegetables: focus on eating one cruciferous vegetable daily (broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, chard, kale, mustard greens, rutabagas and turnips – these have been shown in numerous research studies to offer protection against certain cancers, they are rich in fiber, vitamins and minerals). Follow the rainbow of colors when choosing your weekly fruits and vegetables to provide a variety of vitamins and minerals (for example, broccoli, spinach, tomatoes, chard, kale, collard greens, zucchini, red/yellow bell peppers, apples, berries, pears, oranges, limes).
    • When it comes to produce: Aim for 5 a day for your fruits and vegetables. Have 2 fruits and 3 vegetables daily.
      *One serving of fruit equals, 1 small fresh fruit (2 inch across), ¼ cup of dried fruit (try to buy naturally dried, unsulfured) or ½ cup canned in it’s own juice or ½ cup fresh fruit or ½ cup unsweetened fruit juice (100% juice) – have maximum of a half cup juice per day mixed with water to prevent the calories from adding up so quickly (eat your fruit rather than drink it, so you get the fiber and increased satisfaction).
      One serving of non-starchy vegetables = ½ cup of cooked vegetables or vegetable juice or 1 cup of raw vegetables.

    3. Sodium

    • Try choosing low sodium foods more often: Aim for less than 150 mg per serving on most products and less than 400 mg sodium per serving for frozen foods. When a food is higher in sodium, please drink a lot of water to flush the sodium through, and balance that high sodium food with lots of vegetables to provide even more hydration and fiber. If you have hypertension, aim for less than 2,000 mg or 2 grams of sodium per day.

    III. Learn the 3 D’s- Deciphering Dietary Deception!

    Before going grocery shopping, prepare yourself with the dietary deception on food labels with specific ingredients to look for and specific foods that cause concern. The key words to look for are Lite, Free, Diet, Sugar Free – these words often translate into a packaged food that is not clean (meaning contains chemicals that may be carcinogenic, low in fiber (has no satiety value) and can actually increase your appetite, not conducive for weight loss).

    • If you see the words diet or sugar-free on the food product– keep it on the store shelf. Diet foods contain artificial sweeteners that can stimulate appetite and often contain artificial colors or flavorings that have been linked to ADHD and cancer. Sugar-free contains artificial sweeteners, which are not healthful, research has linked aspartame specifically to the obesity epidemic; artificial sweeteners are so sweet that they make us hungrier. The cleaner fuel you give yourself, the tastier the food will be and the more satisfaction you’ll receive with each bite.
    • Dietary deception is most prevalent in the breads, cereal, crackers, frozen and dairy department: Some examples include: Baker’s Inn 9 grain bread (you would think there would be at least 3 grams of fiber per slice, nope only has 2 grams of dietary fiber per slice, mono and diglycerides, and 210 mg sodium per slice); one of the most known diet foods, “pinch an inch” – Special K Kellogg’s Cereal (has less than 1 gram of dietary fiber, 220 mg sodium, and high fructose corn syrup).
    • Specific Food Labeling Tip to not be fooled by packaging: Look at the grams of dietary fiber for all starchy foods (e.g., bread, crackers, cereal, rice, pasta), grams of fat, milligrams of sodium on all packaged foods, and the ingredient list.
      Red flags to look for in the ingredient list on labels and why:
      Artificial colors/flavors– Yellow #5, Red #3, Blue #1, Green #3, etc. = some are suspected of being cancer causing, and may exacerbate hyperactivity
      Artificial or processed sweeteners- Acesulfame potassium, Aspartame, Saccharin, Stevia, Splenda, sucralose, sorbitol, acesulfame, xylitol = may increase risk for cancer,
      BHT - butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) preservative= hepatotoxicity (liver toxicity) induced by the anti-oxidant food additive, may increase risk of cancer, and when BHT was applied to the skin, it was associated with toxic effects in lung tissue
      Caffeine – increases blood pressure, may cause insomnia if ingested late in the day, may affect the developing fetus, mildly addictive, can cause excess energy or hyperactivity in some people
      Carmine or cochineal extract = both are derived from female cochineal beetles, which are raised in Peru, the Canary Islands, and elsewhere. They provide a pink, red, or purple color to foods, may be declared as artificial color or color added on food labels and may be allergenic
      Cocoa processed with alkali- processes out the benefits of cocoa, the antioxidants (catechins) are leached
      Dough conditioners – additives to help improve the quality of the finished dough= may include carcinogenic agents, for example, potassium bromate and may include emulsifiers such as mono-and diglycerides which include saturated fats
      Enriched, bleached flour = processed bread, destroys some of the nutrients originally present in the whole grains, enriched with some vitamins but not all those present in the original grain
      RED FLAGS (cont’d):
      Flaxseed (whole not grounded), flaxseed oil = when the flax is whole, it goes right through, the body does not get the benefits of the omega-3’s, flaxseed oil may increase cancer risk due to high levels of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA)
      Ginseng (Panax ginseng) - Panax ginseng's most common side-effects is the inability to sleep. Other side-effects include nausea, diarrhea, euphoria, headaches, epistaxis, high blood pressure, low blood pressure, mastalgia, and vaginal bleeding.
      Glycerol ester of wood resin = possible allergen, largely unabsorbed, some components are metabolized by the liver
      High fructose corn syrup, corn syrup solids = excess fructose can increase LDL (bad cholesterol level, clogs the arteries), is more readily converted to fat by the liver, increases the levels of fat in the bloodstream in the form of triglycerides.
      Mono and diglycerides = most likely to cause unwanted effects are those containing long-chain saturated fatty acids, especially stearic acid, increases blood cholesterol.
      Monosodium glutamate (MSG) – flavor enhancer = may cause migraine headaches, chest tightness, wheezing, asthma attacks in those vulnerable
      Olestra- fat replacement = may cause diarrhea, loss of important fat-soluble vitamins
      Palm oil, palm kernel oil, fractionated palm kernel oil- saturated fat, increases LDL cholesterol
      Partially Hydrogenated and hydrogenated oils, trans fat = increases cholesterol level and is carcinogenic
      Polysorbate 60, 65- derived from sorbitol - an artificial sweetener = side effects include: Nausea, gas, diarrhea, stomach cramps or anal irritation
      Potassium bromate – may increase risk of cancer
      Sodium nitrite, nitrites – meat preservatives = may increase risk of stomach cancer
      Sodium stearoyl lactylate- Sodium stearoyl lactate (and the similar calcium stearoyl lactate) - an emulsifier used as a dough strengthener in baked goods, is made by combining lactic acid and stearic acid, and then reacting the result with sodium
      hydroxide or calcium hydroxide to make the sodium or calcium salt = stearic acid is a saturated fat
      Sodium sulfite, sulfites – provokes asthma attacks in those vulnerable, may increase risk for cancer
      Sorbitan ester of fatty acids - Mono-, di- and trisorbitan esters of palmitic, stearic, oleic, isostearic and sesquioleic acid = saturated fats
      Soy Protein Isolate, soy protein concentrate, isolated soy protein –isoflavones are weak estrogens = eating too much (more than 100 mg a day) could possibly increase risk of cancer
      Sucrose syrup – concentrated sugar
      TBHQ (TERT-BUTYLHYDROQUINONE) = may induce free radical formation and erythrocyte membrane alterations (cell damage)

    Satisfying SNACKS:
    Make your own trail-mix with roasted peanuts (check ingredients for peanuts, no oils added), and raw almonds/other nuts/seeds and raisins or dried blueberries/cranberries (check ingredients for no sugar or additives).
    Spread 2 Tablespoons of all-natural peanut butter or soy nut butter on half a sprouted grain bagel/whole-wheat pita/whole-wheat crackers.
    Blend 1/2 cup of plain or vanilla low-fat yogurt with vanilla soymilk with 1/2 frozen banana and a handful of frozen strawberries.
    Spread pizza sauce/marinara sauce over an English muffin and place a sliced tomato and 1 ounce of Jarlsberg Lite Swiss Cheese or French Yogurt Cheese on top, melt in a toaster oven.
    Layer a whole-grain blueberry toaster waffle with 1/2 cup plain low-fat yogurt and 1/2 cup fresh berries/defrosted frozen berries.
    Scoop 1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese into a cantaloupe or honeydew melon half.
    Top a half of a cinnamon-raisin sprouted grain bagel with low-fat ricotta cheese and cinnamon sprinkled on top.
    Combine 1/4 cup low-fat ricotta cheese or cottage cheese with 1/2 cup apple sauce and a dash of cinnamon. Sprinkle with Grape-Nuts or low-fat granola.
    Roll a whole-wheat tortilla up with scrambled egg whites with 1 egg yolk and salsa.
    Stuff half a whole-wheat pita with 1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese and sliced canned (in it’s own juice or water) peaches, pears, or a fresh banana.
    Stuff a pita pocket with sliced turkey breast or sliced part-skim milk cheese, tomato, and a squirt of mustard.
    Use spreads such as chicken or tuna salad onto whole-wheat crackers.
    Mix 1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese with 1/4 cup strawberry yogurt and sprinkle with Muesli cereal.
    Add cereal (at least 5 grams dietary fiber) to plain low-fat yogurt.
    Spread 1 Tablespoon of Soy butter (try “I’m Healthy Soy Nut Butter” from Whole Foods) on 2 apple halves.
    Spread all-natural peanut butter and all-fruit jam on Ak-mak crackers or a mini-bagel.
    Top a mini-bagel with turkey or chicken breast.
    Put slivered almonds and roasted peanuts in 1 cup of vanilla yogurt.
    Have a box of raisins with soy nuts (try Dr. Soy or Genisoy brand).
    Have ½ cup of edamame (fresh soybeans) as a completely balanced snack.
    Blend coffee flavored soymilk with ¼ cup nonfat dry milk powder and ice for a high protein ice mocha.
    Have an ounce of yogurt cheese on “Woven wheat” (available at Whole Foods/Wild Oats/Trader Joe’s) crackers.
    Have low-fat string cheese (choose Organic part-skim milk, e.g., Horizon) with an apple or pear.
    Melt part-skim mozzarella on a whole-wheat tortilla or toasted wheat pita, put some veggies on top (e.g., tomatoes, bell peppers, broccoli).
    Spread all-natural peanut butter with sprinkled sunflower seeds in celery sticks and apple slices.
    Frozen banana: Peel bananas; dip into cocoa and a dash of honey or pure maple syrup; roll in ground nuts (ground peanuts and walnuts or soynuts), freeze individually in plastic wrap.
    Have ½ cup fruit or 2” across piece of fruit with 20 soy crisps, flavor of choice.
    NOTE: Incorporate these snacks as part of your meal plan. If you still feel hungry beyond your individualized snack/meal times, nosh on vegetables “free foods”, e.g. bell peppers, celery, carrots, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, etc. Also, drink lots of water and hot tea (drizzled with a little agave nectar) between snacks/meals.
    6 ounces of tofu (organic, soft or “silken” packed in water, rinse and drain) or ¼ cup nonfat dry milk powder or powdered egg whites (available at Whole Foods, in the baking section, Bob’s Red Mill brand)
    6 ounces organic plain low fat yogurt (Fage 0% Greek Yogurt is best for lower carbs. to fit in the fruit)
    1 small banana
    ½ cup strawberries
    1 cup frozen blueberries
    ½ cup fruit of your choice (e.g. frozen peaches, mixed berries, or cherries)
    4 cups of organic unsweetened soy milk (try “Silk” or Trader Joe’s brand)
    Optional –for added fiber and omega-3 essential fatty acids, stir in a Tablespoon of ground flaxseed (try Organic Bob’s Red Mill whole ground flaxseed meal) to the cup you drink, so it doesn’t get rancid, you need to drink it right away.
    Directions: In a blender, put all ingredients together. If you like a thinner shake, add water and use less milk. Put the top on the blender, chop, blend, and whip. You’re all set for an energizing breakfast or snack. Add a piece of whole wheat/grain toast or a small bowl of >5 grams dietary fiber cereal with the shake for even more sustainable energy. Make this shake the night before, keep it in the blender and store it in the refrigerator. The next morning, just press whip, and you’ve got a quick and easy “on-the-go” energizer.
    Serving size: 1.5 cups
    Total servings: ~4
    Nutrition Analysis per serving:
    239 Calories, 31 grams Carbohydrates, 16 grams Protein, 6 grams Fat

    Friday, October 19, 2007

    Hepatitis C

    What is Hepatitis C?
    Hepatotropic virus also known as Hepatitis C (HVC) is an inflammation of the liver, usually caused by a viral infection and the most serious form of hepatitis. The liver is responsible to break down waste products in your blood. If the liver is inflamed, tender, and enlarged, it becomes unable to function normally. As a result, waste that would normally be filtered out by the liver builds up in the body. Therefore certain nutrients are not processed and stored.

    What are the different types of Hepatitis?
    Hepatitis is classified according to the virus that causes the condition. There are 3 leading types: Hepatitis A, B, and C. In addition, there are less common types known as Hepatitis D, E, and G. All are contagious to some extent.

    What are the symptoms?
    Symptoms include fever, fatigue, nausea, vomiting, headache, loss of appetite, muscle aches, joint pains, drowsiness, dark urine, light colored stools, abdominal discomfort, jaundice (yellowing of the skin due to an accumulation of bilirubin) and elevated alanine transaminase (ALT) liver enzyme levels in the blood.

    How do you get Hepatitis C? Causes? Risk Factor?
    Nearly 4 million Americans are infected with HVC. It is usually spread through direct contact with an infected person’s blood. It is hereditary and can be passed on from a mother to her unborn baby. An infected person cannot pass the virus by kissing, touching, holding hands, coughing, sneezing, or using public toilets. You may be at risk for HVC if you shared needles for intravenous drug use, used non-sterile equipment, had frequent exposure to blood products, or used an infected person’s toothbrush, razor, or other item that had blood on it.

    Nutrition Intervention for Hepatitis C
    If you have Hepatitis, it is crucial to eat healthy and exercise regularly.

    • Artichoke increases the effectiveness of the liver function.
    • Beets promote the regeneration of liver cells.
    • Burdock and dandelion are important for cleansing the liver and the bloodstream.
    • Licorice is effective in treating viral hepatitis due to antiviral activity.
      Caution: Do not use this herb on a daily basis for more than 7 days in a row; stay away from it altogether if you have high blood pressure.
    • Have milk thistle extract 200-400 mgs 3 times daily. It contains silymarin (a flavonoid that has been shown to aid in healing and rebuilding the liver).


    • Include artichokes in your diet. Artichokes protect the liver.
    • Have more greens, eat spinach, swiss chard, kale, bok choy and drink 100% vegetable juice (refrigerated at Whole foods or Trader Joes – 100% vegetables, has 2 grams dietary fiber per serving).
    • Stay clear from fried foods, sugar, highly processed foods, raw fish, shellfish, chemicals, food additives, and eat predominately vegetarian protein (e.g., beans and grains, fish, low fat dairy) rather than high saturated fat animal proteins (e.g., beef, chicken, turkey, lamb).
    • Get plenty of rest.
    • Leave the alcohol alone, including medicines containing alcohol.

      Questions to address your doctor
      Talk to your doctor if you are taking over-the-counter medications. Some medicines contain acetaminophen (Tylenol) that may cause liver damage due to the breakdown by the liver.

    Wednesday, October 17, 2007

    Kid-Friendly Snacks!

    Kid Friendly Kosher Snack Foods Grocery List!
    Most items are available at Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods, purchase string cheese at any kosher market or Ralph’s.

    Turlock Pita Bread – Mini Whole Wheat (put a piece of cheese inside, or spread favorite nut butter on it)
    Whole Foods Organic Whole Wheat Hot Dog & Hamburger Buns (put some organic ketchup on it, have protein source separate, kids like foods separate, e.g., string cheese or hard boiled egg on the side)
    Food for Life Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Bread

    Les Petites Fermieres Monterey Jack, Mozzarella
    Miller’s String Cheeses
    Polly-O Part Skim Ricotta Cheese (great as a spread with some jam)
    Vermont Butter & Cheese Company Fromage Blanc

    Kozy Shack individual serving Puddings
    Whole Foods Chunky Guacamole
    Heinz Organic Ketchup

    Organic Tortillas/Assorted Beverages:
    Food For Life Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Tortillas
    Stonyfield Farms Organic Yobaby drinkable yogurt or Low fat Smoothie
    (In moderation treat)

    Juices in moderation, mix juices with 50% water, choose 100% juice, rather than sugar added.
    Ceres Juice
    365 Organic Apple Juice
    Any fruit or vegetable, “Follow the Rainbow”, vary weekly and choose organic as much as possible (definitely choose organic for items that you’ll eat the skin or ones that have a large surface area, e.g., strawberries, apples, celery, grapes, peaches, potatoes, spinach, bell peppers, cherries, nectarines, pears, red raspberries, strawberries).
    Organics Peeled Carrots
    Edamame (Soybeans) Ready to Eat In the Shell or Shelled

    Cereals- Put in a sandwich bag for kid’s to snack as a dry cereal, give them their protein source as a boxed milk, or cheese:
    Whole Kids Organic Morning-O’s
    Whole Kids Organic Honey Nut Morning O’s
    Trader Joe’s Organic Honey O’s
    Barbara’s Puffins
    Cascadian Farm Organic Cereals (e.g., Organic Multigrain Squares – great to snack on it’s own)
    Nature’s Path Organic Heritage Multigrain Cereal (“yummy flakes”)

    Fiordifrutta Jam
    Maranatha Organic Peanut Butter
    Creamy Unsalted Peanut Butter From Unblanched Peanuts
    Organic Raw Almond Butter
    Sweet Cactus Farms Agave Nectar Light

    Pre-packaged snacks/Dried fruits:
    Health Valley Lowfat Tarts/Cereal Bars/Scones
    Clif Kid Organic Z Bars
    Solana Gold Organic Apple Sauce
    Earth’s Best Organic Apple Sauce
    Soy Nuts/Raw Nuts – Nuts are best for older kids (~>5 years)
    Lightly Salted Dry Roasted Peanuts
    Raw Sunflower Seeds
    Raw Pistachio Nutmeats Halves and Pieces
    Raw Pumpkin Seeds
    Raw Almonds
    Raw Walnuts Halves and Pieces
    Whole Kids Organic Raisins
    Organic Dried Fruit Cranberries
    Dried Blueberries Sweetened with Apple Juice
    Stretch Island Fruit Leather 100% Fruit Snack

    Tuna :
    Gefen Albacore Tuna in water (spread the tuna on crackers/pita)
    Trader Joe’s Canned Tuna packed in water

    Kashi TLC Country Cheddar Cheese Crackers
    My Family Farm Captain’s Catch Cheese Baked Crackers
    Trader Joe’s Multigrain Crackers
    Barbara’s Wheatines
    Back to Nature Classic Rounds
    Hain Rich
    Lundberg Organic Rice Cakes
    Hain/New Morning Honey Grahams
    Country Choice Organic Snacking Cookies-Vanilla Wafers
    Back to Nature Oatmeal Cookies
    Barbara’s Animal Cookies
    Lowfat Chocolatey Eats Cookies for People
    TJ’s 100 Calorie Pack Cinnamon Graham Toucan Cookies

    Robert’s American Gourmet Pirate’s Booty/Veggie Booty
    Vita Spelt Pretzels
    Organic Snyder’s Pretzels
    Newman’s Own Organics Unsalted Rounds Pretzels
    Hain Popped Corn Mini Cakes
    Genisoy Soy Crisps
    Trader Joe’s Soy Crisps White Cheddar Flavor
    Yummy Earth Organic Lollipops

    Horizon Organic Boxed Milks (e.g., Reduced Fat Milk, Vanilla or Strawberry Milk)
    Stonyfield Farms Low Fat Yogurts
    Organic Lowfat Trader Joe’s Yogurt
    Whole Soy & Co. Yogurts
    Knudsen Lowfat Cottage Cheese
    Trader Joe’s Lowfat Cottage Cheese
    Whole Foods Organic Milk
    Organic Grade A Large Brown Eggs Plus Omega 3
    Chino Valley Ranchers Organic Omega-3 Eggs – for hardboiled eggs

    Tuesday, October 16, 2007

    What produce has the most pesticides?

    Pesticides in Produce

    Environmental Working Group’s USDA Produce Analysis 1992-2001

    Highest in Pesticides:

    Bell Peppers
    Grapes (imported)
    Red Raspberries

    Lowest in Pesticides:

    Corn (sweet)
    Peas (sweet)

    Bottom line: Buy organic more often! Especially, for fruits with edible skin or a large surface area, since they're higher in pesticide residues.

    Enjoy Liviting with Organic!

    Deborah A. Klein, MS, RD

    Saturday, October 13, 2007

    Mind Your Magnesium

    Great article on magnesium-Very informative!

    Skimping on magnesium may increase your risk for type 2 diabetes, according to a recent study of about 165,000 people published in the journal Diabetes Care. Magnesium is a key element in bone health as well as muscle and nerve function, and a deficiency may also increase the risk of migraine headaches, osteoporosis, premenstrual syndrome, and an irregular heartbeat. To meet the recommended daily allowance, consume a variety of healthful foods. (See "Magnesium Sources," below, for ideas.) Supplements may also help, but talk to Deb first before taking them. Too much magnesium from supplements can cause diarrhea and lead to more serious problems, such as low blood pressure.

    Magnesium Sources
    The recommended daily allowance for magnesium is 320mg for women over 30, and 420 for men of the same age. The following foods will help you reach that goal.
    -A half cup cooked spinach: 65 mg
    -A half cup black beans:60mg
    -One ounce of almonds:86mg
    -Baked potato with skin: 55mg
    -Two tablespoons of peanut butter: 50 mg

    From an issue of 'Cooking Light' magazine By: Nicci Micco

    Thursday, October 11, 2007


    About 99% of calcium in the body is found in the bones. Despite an inadequate intake of calcium the body will still maintain a normal level- thanks to the bones! Calcium can always be added and withdrawn. If the calcium needs are not met the body will resort to the bones-not an option for bone health. Aside from its critical role in bone, calcium also functions in blood clotting, muscle contraction, nerve-impulse transmission, and cell metabolism.

    You might have noticed that milk is sometimes fortified with vitamin D. This is because calcium requires the presence of this hormone to ensure efficient absorption. The best source for vitamin D is sunlight. Even as little as 20 min in the sun can maintain vitamin D status.

    Absorption of calcium is limited in the presence of some foods including caffeine, oxalate, phytate, and phosphoric acid (found in soda). Oxalate and Phytate are found in leafy green vegetables and inhibit the absorption of calcium by binding to it and excreting it from the body.

    The recommendation for calcium is 1,000-2,000 mg/day. Dairy products are the best foods to eat to meet these needs. A glass of milk is an easy way to score calcium; a one cup serving contains 300mg! If you do not like milk or you are lactose intolerant try fortified orange juice; one cup contains 350mg.

    Another option would be supplementing. Calcium supplements are sometimes poorly digested because they are not easily dissolved. To test for this, place the supplement in 3/4 cup cider vinegar stirring every five minutes. The tablet should dissolve within 30mins.

    Tuesday, October 9, 2007

    Tips for Irritable Bowel Syndrome!

    I had a patient today with severe irritable bowel syndrome. He's had to go on several treatments of antibiotics for over 2 years now, because of bacterial growth according to his Docs, those frequent doses of antibiotics has trashed his natural friendly bacteria production. Thankfully he came in today. He has no idea of what to eat and is scared to eat anything, he has a true fear of food, because he doesn't know what it's going to do to his body. He's feeling bloated all the time and starved. Luckily, after our session today, he has clarity and has a lot more variety of foods to choose from.

    Here's some tips for those of you out there with IBS:

    If you haven't had a food allergy test yet, please get one, so you know what you are allergic to, we want all irritants out of your body.
    Keep a food journal of what you are eating and how you are feeling after those foods, so you can identify if you have specific food intolerances, e.g, are you intolerant to wheat or all gluten, or lactose and/or casein.
    Once you know what the dietary culprits are that are exacerbating the problem, this will soothe your mind and body.
    If you are gluten intolerant, try quinoa, butternut, acorn, all winter squash, peas, yams, sweet potatoes, organic potatoes with skin, amaranth, millet, buckwheat (is not wheat), corn, rice as alternatives for starches.


    When an intestinal upset occurs:

    1. Drink plenty of fluids.
    2. Eat a bland diet-
    Stay clear from spices, condiments, and highly seasoned foods: Specific gastric irritants: black pepper, chili powder, caffeine, coffee, tea, cocoa, alcohol, and drugs.
    Watch out for high roughage foods, such as fruit skins, nuts and whole-grains.
    Eliminate acidic irritants: tomatoes, tomato juice, citrus juices.
    Eat low fat foods. High fat foods are irritating.
    3. Put vegetables and nonacidic fruits through a food processor or blender. Organic baby food is a quick and easy choice.
    4. Exercise, such as stretching exercises, swimming or walking is helpful.
    5. Chew food well. Focus on eating slowly.
    6. Eat small meals/snacks, eat small portions every 3 to 4 hours, try not waiting longer than 5 hours without eating.
    7. Practice stress-management. Try doing deep breathing exercises. Shallow breathing reduces the oxygen available for proper bowels.
    8. Wear loose-fitting clothing.
    9. Wait 1 to 2 hours after eating before lying down.

    The Key: Relax, get lots of rest and have positive thoughts.

    Overall dietary management recommendations for IBS:

    1. Drink plenty of fluids, gradually increase fiber (fruits, vegetables, plus whole grains-esp. brown rice, and legumes).
    2. Eat low fat products. Avoid fried foods, animal fats, butter, ice cream.
    3. Avoid coffee and other caffeinated beverages, chocolate, candy, the additives mannitol and sorbitol, margarine, nuts, orange and grapefruit juices, pastries, all processed foods, spicy foods, seeds, sugar, sugar-free chewing gum, and wheat bran and wheat products.
    4. Avoid alcohol and tobacco, which irritate the stomach and colon lining.
    5. Increase exercise: stretching exercises, swimming or walking.
    6. Chew food well, do not overeat or eat in a hurry.
    7. Focus on stress management. Practice deep breathing exercises for increasing oxygen for proper bowel function.
    8. Wear loose-fitting clothing.
    9. Wait 1 or 2 hours after eating before lying down.
    10. Omit dairy products except for low-fat soured products or gluten (barley, oats, rye, and wheat) if not tolerated. Add calcium in other forms (almonds, asparagus, figs, blackstrap molasses).
    11. Omit gas-forming foods if not tolerated: Beans, barley, brussels sprouts, cabbage, nuts, and soybeans.
    12. To relieve diarrhea: Eat small frequent meals low in fiber (rice bread, cooked refined cereals, canned peaches and pears, mashed potatoes); increase fluid intake, (drink fluids between meals, only small amounts with meals-water, low-acid juices-apricot, pear, or peach; avoid very hot liquids); increase potassium foods (banana, cantaloupe, applesauce, canned apricots, molasses, honeydew melon). Omit lactose (milk), eat high pectin foods, which act as a thickening agent (apples, bananas), avoid carbonated beverages, avoid alcoholic beverages, avoid caffeine, avoid greasy, spicy, and gas-forming foods.
    13. Supplementation: -Acidophilus (1 teaspoon in distilled water, twice daily on an empty stomach- replaces lost “friendly” bacteria, use a non-dairy powder form)
    -Garlic (2 capsules 3 times daily, kills bacteria and parasites, enhances immunity)
    -Calcium/Magnesium/Vit. D (1,000 mg Calcium daily- 500 mg/2 times per day, to replace calcium depleted and aids in forming stools)
    -Vitamin B complex (100 mg 3 times daily, B vitamins are necessary for digestion and absorption of nutrients)
    -Vitamin C (500 mg, 3 times daily, for healing and immunity)
    -Vitamin E (400 IU daily, protects the cell membranes that line the colon wall)
    -Zinc (50 mg daily, aids in repair of damaged tissue of the digestive tract and enhances immunity)
    -Alfalfa in liquid or tablet form, contains vitamin K, needed to build intestinal flora for proper digestion, and chlorophyll for healing the bloodstream.
    -Aloe vera is healing to the digestive tract. Take ½ cup of aloe vera juice up to 3 times per day, on an empty stomach.

    Monday, October 8, 2007

    Nutrition Tips for Your Busy Life

    Below is a great article from providing a few suggestions in order to incorporate a healthy diet into your lifestyle. Although they suggest adding canned fruits and vegetables remember: it does not take much time to cut up a fresh tomato, peach, or onion as a nice addition to your salad or sandwich. Canned vegetables are better than no vegetables at all, however, fresh is best! Mix it up. Have fresh one day and canned the next. My concern with canned fruit and vegetables is that they contain excess sodium, sugar, and unnecessary calories.

    Paint Your Plate with Color – Mix blueberries or pineapple tidbits in your yogurt. Garnish your salad with sliced beets or peach slices. Tuck spinach leaves into your sandwich. Use carrot coins, corn and sliced peppers as pizza toppers. Make a taco salad with tomato salsa. Fortify canned and homemade soup with green peas or beans. Switch to a sweet-potato salad. A rainbow of fruits and vegetables – canned, frozen, fresh - create a palette of nutrients and phytonutrients, or plant substances, on your plate. Many phytonutrients work as antioxidants that protect healthy body cells from damage – and may help protect against some cancers, heart disease and other health problems. Check regularly for hundreds of free, healthy recipes made with phytonutrient-rich canned fruits and vegetables.

    Go Lean with Protein - Protein-rich foods take center plate in most meals. A good thing since we all need protein to build and repair body cells. And emerging research suggests that eating more protein as you get older may help you keep your muscle mass as lifestyles become less physically active. No matter what the source, smart choices are also lean, low-fat or fat-free! Among the quick-to-prepare, quick-to-serve options to have on hand: canned tuna, salmon, chicken or turkey for salads and stir-fries; skinless chicken breasts, fish fillets or steaks to broil or grill; lean ground meat for burgers and pasta sauces; eggs to scramble; and a variety of canned beans for salads, stews, soups and more. An added bonus, salmon and tuna deliver heart-healthy omega-3s and beans provide fiber.

    Fiber: Bundled with Nutrients and Phytonutrients – Fiber-rich foods – beans, whole-grain products, vegetables and some fruits - are loaded with health benefits. Fiber itself not only aids digestion, but also helps protect you from a host of health problems, from constipation and hemorrhoids, to some forms of cancer. Generally lower in calories, fiber-rich foods also help with weight management. There’s more: eating “fiber-rich” foods may help people with diabetes maintain blood sugar levels. And it’s heart-healthy. “Fiber up” your pantry: keep canned beans, vegetables and fruit on hand for quick and easy fiber-rich meals.

    You Say “Tomato” – Tomatoes contain lycopene, a phytonutrient in the carotenoid family, which may help protect against prostate cancer and heart disease. Research indicates that heat from cooking or canning makes the lycopene in tomatoes more available to your body. That said, use the variety of canned tomato products, such as diced and whole tomatoes, tomato sauce and paste, tomato soup, and salsas, as your best and most convenient food sources of lycopene.

    "Soy" Good! – Whether canned black or yellow soybeans, soybeans in the pod, soy drinks, tofu or the many other soy products in today’s marketplace, soy delivers on nutrition. It not only provides high-quality protein, but it’s also a good source of B vitamins, potassium, unsaturated fats and isoflavones, which may help lower your risks for some health problems. Soy protein may be heart healthy, too! Quick meal ideas: add canned soybeans to your soups, pasta sauces, chili and salads.(

    Thursday, October 4, 2007

    A Low Carb Diet is Not the Answer!

    Your body needs carbohydrates! In fact 50-65% of your total calories for the day should contain carbohydrate.
    Carbohydrates provide glucose for the energy levels of red blood cells and parts of the brain and nervous system. Eating too little carbohydrates forces the body to make glucose using primary amino acids from proteins found in muscles and other vital organs. Nevertheless, depleting the amino acids in cells that are needed for other critical functions such as building and maintaining muscle. In addition to the loss of protein, when you do not eat enough carbohydrates fats cannot be broken down completely in metabolism.
    This does not mean go the coffee shop and get a blueberry muffin, scone or chocolate chip cookie. These are simple carbohydrates, full of white flour and 'empty' calories. Stay away from white flour. It causes a sudden rise and fall in your blood glucose levels, therefore, you are hungry again in a short amount of time. Choose carbs in their natural plant form. Consider brown (preferred) or white rice, fresh fruit, rolled oats, high fiber cereal, and sweet potatoes. These complex carbs are slowly digested, therefore, blood glucose levels are being regulated and maintained within a healthy range. When shopping for bread be sure to read the label! Always opt for the the whole wheat option and purchase the loaf with highest amount of fiber per slice containing whole wheat flour as the first ingredient.
    Aim for carbohydrates that are natural, pure, minimally processed and full of fiber!