Should I track my food intake?

There is much to be learned about your relationship with food when you track or monitor your food intake. Monitoring your food intake can be beneficial for everyone, but especially if you have diabetes, weight concerns, an eating disorder, disordered eating, or GI issues.

Monitoring food can answer the following questions:

  1. What do I eat?
  2. Do I restrict particular foods?
  3. Is there a pattern to my eating? ie. Do I eat a certain way during the week vs weekend, or when I’m alone vs with company?
  4. Are there any “triggers” for my eating? ie. Am I eating late when I’m tired?
  5. What are my emotional triggers? ie. depression, loneliness, boredom, anxiety, or anger.
  6. Does my eating provide emotional benefits—is it calming, entertainment, an escape, or relief?

Just as a choir cannot improve their harmony if they don’t recognize the current dissonance, it is impossible to change anything if you are not aware of your current situation.

It is important to monitor your intake to help you recognize your behaviors, emotions, feelings, and exercise habits. Being honest with yourself is the only way to make progress.

Track your food intake as soon as possible after consuming. This will help you become more aware of your behaviors, emotions, feelings in real-time then you can start exploring further into your intake.

We encourage our patients to use a food intake record and not electronic devices. Electronic devices often lack the ability to make notes of the very important aspects of your food intake, such as family circumstances, emotions, and feelings. A food record can include time, place, with whom and degree of hunger during intake.

The dietitians at BN will support your monitoring efforts. Together, you will brainstorm various pathways to changing your thinking, behaviors and reaching your health goals. It’s a rewarding journey to realize you can make changes you never thought possible. Your trek to a healthy, peaceful relationship with food is far more than “eat this not that.”

CB

Fitness 101

Fitness 101:

 

Exercising is a great way to relieve stress, improve your health, and gain self-confidence. There are many reasons why people might not want to exercise like: “I don’t have time”, “I am too out of shape”, “I don’t know what to do when I am at the gym”, or even “I don’t want to workout alone”. All these problems can be solved with a little effort and motivation. Working out does not have to take place anywhere specific either. You can workout in your neighborhood, your living room, a local gym or park. The hardest part is getting started, once you have a routine it is easier to keep it up and make time for yourself and your health. Here are a couple ways to get yourself started:

 

A little goes a long way. There is no need to start off your exercise journey spending hours in the gym every single day. Add a 15-20 minute walk or run into your routine a couple times a week then go from there. Starting small will better ensure that you don’t get burnt out and you stick to your exercise goals.

Stop making excuses. If you don’t like running or lifting weights, find something that you do enjoy. There are many options like yoga, dancing, or hiking. If you don’t believe you have the time, make the time. This is your life and your health, so make it a priority for yourself to set aside even 5 minutes of exercise.

Be kind to yourself. If it has been awhile since you’ve had any physical activity there is no better time to start than right now! Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t look like a body builder after a week of hitting the gym. Your exercise journey is about YOU and YOUR health. Focus on making yourself better and reward yourself for sticking to your exercise goals.

 

When you do decide to get back in the gym, get a good warm up and cool down with walking and some light stretching. Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your workout. It is time to put your health at the top of the list! Happy exercising 😊

 

KM

Tele-health/Tele-nutrition Video Conferencing

Have you been pondering an appointment with a dietitian to help you improve your diabetes management, food allergy or celiac disease issues, lipid challenges, improve your athletic performance, lose weight or once and for all heal from your eating disorder? Scheduling and keeping appointments are a hassle, sometimes inconvenient and an expense.

Beyond the actual cost of the medical nutrition therapy appointment there are additional costs. How much does it cost you to take off an hour early from work to schedule an appointment? Are you driving across town or from Clinton, Guymon, or Muskogee for an appointment? Gas is not cheap. If you are driving to the city from out of town you will likely have meal expenses involved also. Do you have to pay child care costs while you are at an appointment?

The additional costs and inconvenience can be eliminated with “tele-nutrition video conferencing” appointments.  Banister Nutrition now provides the option for you to schedule an appointment with one of our dietitians and you can be in your kitchen, office or favorite coffee shop, where ever you please. We have a HIPPA compliant software program that allows us to easily connect with you via an e-mail address you provide. We offer packages of 3-4 appointments at a reduced cost, payable at the time of purchase with credit card.

“If” you want your insurance to cover your medical nutrition therapy appointments, insurance companies have placed limitations on what they will cover. These restrictions include:

  • Your referring physician must be located in a medically deprived area of the state which of course means rural Oklahoma.
  • At the time of your video conference you must be sitting in your physicians’ actual brick and mortar office space.
  • Medicare will cover 3 appointments per year for diabetes and renal disease only.

 

To assist patients with insurance coverage, if you have a rural physician you would like for us to approach regarding making this service available to you please provide us with your physicians name, office address and phone number . We will contact your physician to try make these arrangements for you.

Our experience has been that both physicians and patients living in rural Oklahoma have been very pleased with having medical nutrition therapy available via video conferencing. Initially we all (physicians, patients and dietitians) thought video conferencing would be a little awkward, relationships would not be easily built, and nutrition therapy via this platform would not be effective.  We are pleased to say this has not been the case. Everyone involved has found this new, convenient resource to improve your health care has been very appreciated and helpful.

 

CB

Easy Vegetable Lasagna Recipe

Makes 8 Servings

YOU WILL NEED

14 lasagna noodles (2 extra for filling in holes)

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 cup (140 grams) chopped onion

1 tablespoon minced garlic, (3 cloves)

1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or more to taste

2 medium zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

2 medium yellow squash, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

One (12-ounce) jar roasted red peppers, drained and cut into 1/2-inch pieces, 1 heaping cup

1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes

Generous handful fresh basil leaves, chopped

One (15-ounce) container ricotta cheese or cottage cheese

2 large eggs

2 ounces (60 grams) Parmesan cheese, grated, about 1 cup

8 ounces (230 grams) low-moisture mozzarella cheese, shredded

Salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste

DIRECTIONS

COOK NOODLES

Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil then cook lasagna noodles according to package directions. (We add a couple teaspoons of olive oil to the water so the noodles do not stick together). Drain then lay flat on a sheet of aluminum foil.

MAKE VEGETABLE SAUCE

Heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly oil a 13-inch by 9-inch baking dish or spray with non-stick cooking spray.

Heat the olive oil in a wide skillet with sides over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, red pepper flakes, zucchini, squash, and a pinch of salt then cook, stirring occasionally until softened but still with some crunch, another 5 to 8 minutes.

Stir in the roasted red peppers and crushed tomatoes. Bring to a low simmer and cook until the liquid has thickened and reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Add the basil and season to taste with additional salt and pepper.

MAKE CHEESE FILLING

While the sauce cooks, stir the ricotta cheese, eggs, and a 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a medium bowl until blended.

ASSEMBLE LASAGNA

Spoon just enough vegetable mixture into the baking dish to lightly cover the bottom (about 1 cup). Arrange four noodles lengthwise and side by side to cover the bottom. (If the noodles are short on one end, you may need to cut an extra noodle and place into dish to cover where the other noodles have not).

Spread about half of the ricotta cheese mixture over the noodles. Sprinkle with a third of the Parmesan cheese and a third of the mozzarella cheese. Top with a third of the vegetable mixture.

Add another layer of four noodles then repeat with remaining cheese and vegetables. Finish with a final layer of noodles, vegetables, Parmesan cheese and mozzarella cheese.

Cover loosely with aluminum foil and bake 20 minutes, uncover then bake 15 minutes until cheese is crusty around the edges. To make the cheese golden brown on top, slide under the broiler for 1 to 2 minutes. Let rest 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

KM

 

*Thank you for the recipe and picture https://www.inspiredtaste.net/22401/fresh-vegetable-lasagna-recipe/*

 

What are You Thinking?

Does your thinking align with your goals and aspirations? Does your thinking support the positive direction of change which you desire? Do you realize your thinking tends to continually bring to mind the negative experiences of past efforts to lose weight, better manage your blood sugar, recover from your eating disorder, or improve your athletic performance because you are not eating to fuel your body properly? Do any of the following thoughts sound familiar to you?

“I can never lose weight.”

“Regardless of what I do my blood sugar is still all over the board.”

“I am so tired from my chemo/radiation, I will never be able to eat to get my strength back.”

“Trying to follow a gluten free diet is exasperating, I can’t do it.”

“I hate to exercise; I was never athletic even when I was younger.”

If some rendition of the above comments is frequently circulating in your head and you are really frustrated because you are not achieving your health and fitness goals, please do not be surprised. Negative thoughts/self-talk will never translate into positive action or positive change.

Check your thoughts more frequently than you check calories, grams of carbohydrates or fats, your blood glucose meter or nutrition labels. Your thoughts precede every decision you make. What are you thinking?

 

Some ways to turn around that negative self-talk:

  1. Change your (inner) tone of voice – Be attentive to the way you talk to yourself and change judgmental and harsh tones into empathetic and gentle ones.
  2. Write down your thoughts – When you hear the negative voice in your head, write it down to get a clear understanding of what you are saying to yourself and how you’re feeling.
  3. Smile more – Faking it until you make it can really pay off. Smiling can help change your mood about the day or a certain situation. Take a minute to think about a couple things you are grateful for to help you feel like smiling.

CB

Gut Microbiome and Nutrition

The large intestine contains the highest concentration of microbes in our bodies and these microbes are different for everyone. The different types depend on genes, age, gender, diet, hygiene and even climate and occupation. Studies show that gut microbes even affect pain, mood, sleep, stress, and how our bodies use the food we eat to fight infection and keep us healthy. The microbes in our gut also affect how the nutrients we eat are stored in our bodies, as well as regulate our appetites and have some control in our weight.

Diets high in fat and refined sugars can cause the good and bad bacteria in our gut to become unbalanced. This can cause inflammation and increase our risk for infections. The gut microbiota actually act to crowd out bad bacteria that can cause infection. It can also decrease inflammation throughout the body by releasing specific compounds to prevent attacks on the immune system. 

Foods that are good for gut health include high FIBER foods such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and pre/probiotics!

 

Fiber Foods:

  • Bran cereal, FiberOne bar
  • Beans (lentils, kidney, black, lima, etc)
  • Berries (blueberries, blackberries, raspberries)
  • Quinoa, wild rice, brown rice, whole wheat bread
  • Spinach, collard greens, peas, broccoli, squash
  • Almonds, sesame seeds, pistachios
  • Pears, apples, dried fig, prunes, oranges

 

Probiotic Foods:

  • Aged cheeses, greek yogurt, kefir
  • Kimchi, kombucha, olives, sauerkraut, soybeans
  • Sourdough bread

 

Prebiotic Foods:

  • Berries, bananas, tomatoes, vegetables
  • Barley, flaxseed, oatmeal, wheat
  • Beans, chickpeas, lentils

 

For more in-depth info check out this link>> http://www.nutritionnews.abbott/nutrition-as-medicine/the-role-of-the-microbiome-in-gut-health-.html?fbclid=IwAR2R1aisahO4KeNLiZNXXiszzbQoZDqtCoT-5jLopPYlI-PXhMeHVepZ464

 

KM

Chicken Pot Pie Made Healthy

This recipe adds more carrots and parsley, substitutes low-fat milk, and uses less butter! Easy swaps like this can really transform a classic recipe into something healthier!

 

Ingredients

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
  2. Combine chicken, carrots, peas, and celery in a saucepan. Cover with water. Boil until chicken is no longer pink in the middle and vegetables are fork tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat, drain, and set aside.
  3. Cook and stir onions in butter in a saucepan over medium heat, until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in flour, salt, pepper, and celery seed. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Simmer over medium-low heat until thick, about 5 minutes. Stir in parsley and remove from heat. Set aside.
  4. Place chicken mixture in bottom pie crust; pour hot liquid mixture over. Cover with top crust, seal edges, and cut away excess dough. Make several small slits in top to allow steam to escape.
  5. Bake in preheated oven until pie is golden brown and filling is bubbly, 30 to 35 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.

 

Let us know how you like this great recipe from allrecipes.com!

KM

Intuitive Eating

Are you tired of dieting and being confused by all the latest diet trends? Do you feel like you don’t know how to get on track and establish a consistent eating pattern? Are you unsure of how food connects with your mental and physical health? If you answered yes to any this, the concept and practice of intuitive eating will be great to apply to your lifestyle.

Intuitive eating in a nutshell is a mindset or philosophy that honors internal body cues that we are innately born with such as eating when we are hungry and stopping when we are satisfied, and it rejects the diet mentality that is heavily marketed. There is more that is involved in becoming an intuitive eater but here are the 10 principles that were first developed by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch in their book titled intuitive eating.

  1. Reject the Diet Mentality – Avoid fad diets and all the rules surrounded about eating
  2. Honor your Hunger – Listen to the cues your body gives you to tell you to fuel up. Keep yourself fed.
  3. Make Peace with Food – Give yourself permission to eat and enjoy all foods. Restriction leads to overeating which creates a poor relationship with food
  4. Challenge the Food Police – Stop the thoughts in your head that make you believe your “good” for eating low calories or “bad” for having some ice cream.
  5. Respect your Fullness – Listen for the signals your body gives you to tell you that you are no longer hungry. A hunger scale can be great to use for this.
  6. Discover the Satisfaction Factor- Enjoy the food and meal experiences you encounter. Remember that food is to be both nourishing and satisfying.
  7. Honor Your Feelings without using Food – Find ways to cope with emotions you may struggle with. Practice guided mediation, talk with a friend, or dive into a great book.
  8. Respect your Body – Accept your genetic blueprint and be proud of the skin you’re in! Your worth is not determined by your size.
  9. Exercise, Feel the Difference – Get active in an activity you enjoy. It doesn’t have to be at the gym to be considered exercise. Go on a walk or get some yard work done. It all counts. Shift your focus from solely burning calories to how energized you may feel. It’s a great stress reliever too!
  10. Honor your Health – Avoiding diets doesn’t equate to not being aware of or caring about what you eat. Choose nutrient dense foods the majority of the time also knowing that’s its totally fine to have some indulgences

Remember that intuitive eating doesn’t happen overnight and it takes consistent practice and time. You can work with any of the dietitians at BN to help apply these principles into your way of life long-term.

UC

Sugar-Coated

The American Heart Association recommends no more then 6 TEASPOONS (25 grams or 100 calories) of added sugar per day for women, and 9 TEASPOONS (38 grams or 150 calories) per day for men. To put things into perspective…

1 Tablespoon Ketchup = 3.7 grams Sugar

1 Quaker Chewy Bar = 7 grams Sugar

1 Cup apple juice = 24 grams Sugar

1 Serving Yoplait Fruit, Nonfat Yogurt = 47 grams Sugar

Added Sugar

With the new Nutrition Facts label, there is now a column for “Added Sugar”. This is great information to have and it tells us how many grams of calorie containing sweeteners/added sugars have been added. Consuming added sugars in excess can cause weight gain and obesity because they do not contain nutrients and are a form of empty calories. In large amounts, these sweeteners rapidly increase blood glucose levels, insulin levels, and triglycerides. When these levels are elevated, your risk for diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and other chronic illnesses increases.

Artificial Sweeteners

Artificial sweeteners, aka non-nutritive sweeteners, are another type of sweetener that can be added to food products and are widely known for being added to diet beverages. They are low and even no calorie sweeteners such as Nutrasweet, Sweet One, Sweet’N Low, and Splenda. In their chemical forms they are Aspartame, Acesulfame-K, Saccharin, and Sucralose. This type of sweetener also provides no nutrient benefits for the body. Studies show that daily consumption of artificially sweetened beverages, such as diet drinks, are associated with a 36% greater risk for metabolic syndrome and a 67% increased risk for type 2 diabetes (Gardener, et al., 2019).

Artificially sweetened beverages can be used among consumers to decrease calories but use of these beverages should be limited-time and as an in-between while transitioning to drinking water only.

Real Sugar/Natural Sugar

Not all sugar is bad. Naturally occurring sugars in food such as fruit (fructose) and milk (lactose) provide important nutrients. Whole fruits contain antioxidants and fiber, which helps you feel full for longer and provide metabolic benefits. The natural sugars combined with the other nutrients in these foods are digested more slowly than the added sugars which helps stabilize blood glucose levels. When given the option, always choose whole fruit over dried fruit or fruit juice.

 

As always, we recommend a balance of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, whole grains, and healthy fats. However, there is room for the occasional Coke or Diet Dr. Pepper in moderation. Living a healthy lifestyle is about variety, moderation and making choices for YOU and your health!

KM

 

 

Studies and Pictures Cited:

  1. Gardener, H., & Elkind, M. S. (2019). Artificial Sweeteners, Real Risks. Stroke,50(3), 549-551. doi:10.1161/strokeaha.119.024456
  2. Strawbridge, H. (2018, January 08). Artificial sweeteners: Sugar-free, but at what cost? Retrieved from https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/artificial-sweeteners-sugar-free-but-at-what-cost-201207165030
  3. Photo by Mikael Stenberg on Unsplash

Fitness & Mental Health for Mom

As moms we have many different hats that we wear. We play the role of chefs, nurses, cleaners, counselors and SO much more. Whether we stay at home or work outside of the home, we are all working moms. It’s a job that we have 24/7 and by far the most amazing job there is. Being a mother combined with everything else that we do can be stressful. As a mother of three small children, that also works, I can say this from experience… It can be challenging at times to consistently make time for myself and be mindful of how I can effectively manage stress in a positive and beneficial way.

Something I strive to do is focus on both mental and physical health. Exercising is a great way to relieve stress and anxiety. When we exercise endorphins are released. Endorphins are hormones that the body releases in response to stress such as physical pain or intense exercise. After these chemicals are released, they cause feelings of well being and euphoria. Finishing a workout gives a sense of accomplishment and boosts energy.

When paired with eating a balanced diet, there aren’t many activities that make you feel that good. The recommended amount of exercise each week is either 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity. Exercise can be accomplished in a variety of ways. Here are some tips to make this a regular practice for yourself.

 

  1. Do something you enjoy: This looks different for everyone. If you find it challenging to figure out how to incorporate it into your schedule, think outside the box.
  2. Workout ideas for your moms:
    1. Take your kids out on a walk or jog around the neighborhood while pushing the stroller.
    2. For those of you that have kids that are a little older, make it a fun family challenge and workout together at home. Physical activity doesn’t require you to go to the gym or a fitness class, you can do workouts at home too.
    3. If you’re a stay-at-home mom, try to exercise early before the kids wake up or during nap times.
    4. If you don’t work from home, take advantage of lunch breaks or any time that you have before or after work.
    5. Your workouts can be spread out in multiple mini sessions throughout the day instead of one longer session. It’s perfectly fine and still counts if you do two 15 minute sessions a day or three 10 minute ones. It all adds up and will make a difference.

 

SAMPLE AT HOME WORKOUT: INTERVAL TRAINING:  A workout I like to do at home, when I can’t make it to the studio to train, is interval based training. This is accomplished by establishing a set amount of time to perform the exercise(s) followed by a set period of time to rest and repeating the sequence. I like to choose at least 1-2 upper and lower body exercises, 1-2 core exercises and at least one cardio intensive exercise and end it with some stretching. This method helps keeps my intensity higher and lets me accomplish more in less time.  For example, do 4 rounds of squats, push-ups, lunges, bicep curls, jumping jacks, and a plank hold. The work : rest ratio for this would be 30 seconds on : 60 seconds off. 

 

Whether it be Zumba, Yoga, weight training or a great walk with the kids, just keep moving. In order for us to continue all that we do and have peace of mind, we HAVE to take care of ourselves and make it a priority. Your kids will be so motivated and inspired by this.  So the next time you feel anxious and stressed, remember that you are only one workout away from a good mood!

UC