Video Blog: Fed up with the Pillsbury Doughboy!!

It seems consumers and food manufacturers such as General Mills are focusing on the consumption of more natural food. I figured that it was a good idea to review  the impact of eating all this artificial food in America.The movie Fed Up gives a good overview and history of the problem. The public and now General Mills knows the solution to the problem of society eating junk food,it is simple just eat real food.  Keep an eye out for my blog post later this week exploring why General Mills is shifting towards making more natural foods.  Do you think General Mills has good intentions?

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How to Build a Satisfying Salad

 

vegetarian marketing
A vegetarian salad.

As someone who craves salads in their sleep, I know that is weird and not everyone has such wonderful interactions with salads. The biggest complaint is that salads are not very filling. The other thing that I notice is that people have either an old or narrow definition of salad.  When I say old, it means that it that horrible iceberg lettuce, carrots, and tomatoes.  Salads are usually put into the box of always having to include lettuce.  Today, I will be shattering all your preconceived notions about salads, while outlining how to make a salad that is filling. Here go the steps to creating a filling salad.

  • No Lettuce

Salads don’t necessarily need to include lettuce. A salad may include whole wheat couscous, quinoa, or even brown rice as base. All of those salad bases would fill you up along with having a slow metabolic burn.

  • Ok, a leafy vegetable

Yes, I know, but you say lettuce based salads don’t fill you up. My suggestion is not to use iceberg lettuce. Kale, Spinach, baby Spinach, and dark green leafy red romaine are very filling lettuce. These lettuces will assist you in filling full.

  • Good Veggies

These types of veggies will assist you creating a filling salad such as: avocados, cucumbers, cheese, eggs, tomatoes, broccoli, carrots, and cauliflower.

  • Salad Dressing

This is critical choice when eating a salad. The creamy salad dressings tend to put on the extra pounds, so select carefully. Oil and vinegar with spices are an easy low-calorie salad dressing.  Generally, a salad dressing that is oil based will be fewer calories.

  • Protein

Many people are either omnivores or carnivores, thereby desiring some protein on their salad. One has many options if they are vegetarian seeking protein substitute, you can do soy artificial chicken strips, beans, crumpled soy, and tempeh. If you are more of a pescatarian, then a piece of baked fish such as snapper, salmon, or tuna might be your preference.

  • Cheese

I love cheese and adding it to a salad. I find that it makes the salad tastier.

It is my hope that this information makes you rethink salads. They can be filling and tasty. Also my personal favorite is to make a salad with either couscous or quinoa as the base. When I use either of those, the salad really seems to fill me up. Enjoy eating your salad. Happy Fruits and Veggies Month to you!

Lisa

How to Continue Towards a Health Goal

perseverance-and-courage-quote

 

Hello All,

 

I know many of you have set New Year’s resolutions related to health. This is the time of year when people hit some obstacles. I wanted to let you know that I am rooting for you. My mother would say a try beats a fail all the time. Please just take it one day at time.

 

More inspiration and posts coming.

 

Have an awesome week. Keep warm if you are on the east coast.

UrbanHealthyChick

A 30 Minute Workout

Hello All,

Happy Holidays to All! This time of the year can be very chaotic leaving no time to workout.

This is a no equipment needed workout that anyone can do possibly anywhere. It is my hope that this work out is helpful.  Later this week, I will have another post covering my digital thank yous to my colleagues in both health and digital/social media in 2014.

Hope this workout is helpful.

Have a great week.

Happy Monday!

The Village, Social Media, and a PSA Video

obesity15n-3-web

 

Recently a PSA video on childhood obesity on YouTube became very popular and received over a millions views. The video was very powerful and provided slightly scary imagery. After seeing the video two times, a few things immediately came to mind regarding this issue. Social media has the ability to communicate and elevate an issue in the public discourse. All forms of communication really come down to the conversation, which should be the goal of any PSA video. Images in the video were more than just that of the patient/child, but others in “ the village” surrounding the child.

Organizations and individuals have used social media to as a vehicle to get support for various causes. This PSA being posted on YouTube along with the views it has received have raised the visibility of this tremendously important issue. The conversation has been vigorous and lively in the comment section where this video has been posted. It has created a ripple effect as so many times happens with social media. Countless “social media campaigns” have been successful such as #BringBackOurGirls, ALS ice bucket challenge, and the Arab Springs uprising.  As a manager who leverages technology and consults regarding it the platform when used strategically can be a game changer.   Social media is a powerful tool, but it must be use precisely, thoughtful, and align with a strategy for improving healthcare outcomes in this instance.

This YouTube video may assist increasing awareness among the public and support to eradicate this epidemic. Childhood obesity will require a whole village to create improvements in the lives of obese children. My thoughts gravitated in that direction during the video because of everyone in the village shown such as teachers, other kids, clinicians, etc had a part to play in the child’s health. Studies have shown that who one hangs out with can determine their health and obesity profile. Additionally, where one livesPSA on Obesity has a big impact on someone’s health. That last point really reflects the village concept. Though the video shows a parent at the end discussing parenting related to food, I came away asking what I can do to assist parents and other care givers of children. As a result, I am formulating some ideas that I will blog on later.

Blogging such as everything else is about the conversation including that PSA related to child obesity posted online. It is my hope that genuine conversation manifests as a result of this PSA. PSAs are needed, since many times society doesn’t want to have the hard conversations about sex, drinking, etc.  Even worse than not having the conversation, are situations when parents and others “in the village” are ill informed about a topic such as childhood obesity. Also the discussion should not about shaming or blaming busy mothers. They are not the only source of this problem. Parents do play a critical role in a child’s nurturing process, but we as a society need to provide resources as well as create work/life balance culture to support busy parents. That teacher in the video who game him candy for getting an A shares some responsibility for his obesity along with his parents and others “in the village”. Also we must look in the mirror as well as individuals. I am ashamed to admit it, but I have given people cookies for gifts yet don’t consume them. My take away for immediate change is not to give out sweets and other fatty foods as gifts to others. We have to work together with parents to stem the tide of childhood obesity in society.

The Great Vitamin Debate, Again!

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             There has been a great deal of discussion related to effectiveness of vitamins. One day they are bad for you, then the next the minerals and nutrients are important for stopping everything from alzheimers to cancer. I agree 110% that humans should strive to get their minerals and nutrients from quality fruits, vegetables, and non processed foods. My issue is with the discussion, so let’s look at two players to illustrate my point.

                American Medical Association is doctors that have attended medical school. It is a very well known fact in some circles that doctors receive very little training in nutrition. Therefore, it is very challenging for such a group to discuss in an educated and nuanced fashion: vitamins, healthy diets, and nutritional value of foods. However, these groups along with government agencies are leading the discussion about supplements and potential benefits. This is the same government that gives farmers of corn, American tax dollars money in the form of subsidies, that are returned to citizens via a corn fructose infused in lot of processed food products. This corn fructose has been linked to potentially obesity and high rates of diabetes in Americans.

Groups such as the Council for Responsible Nutrition are interested in selling their supplemental nutrition products. Additionally, many of the participants at the council are from pharmaceutical companies. Many pharmaceutical companies have consumer health divisions that sell products such as multivitamins.  The scientists are put in an interesting position of doing the research and then evaluating the products of companies that support their livelihood.  This creates a bit of a quandary for scientific professionals. I provided links to my facts as well as argument against vitamins, which was very interesting.

Why don’t we stop this silly discussion and focus on what is best for American citizens? The spin from both directions is very dizzying. We clearly cannot trust either governmental agencies or doctors to discuss nutrition in a patient centric way.

Article about Vitamin E benefits from MayoClinic:

http://tinyurl.com/n8d8c5f

Cancer and Vitamin D link:

http://tinyurl.com/kmw5v6w

Vitamins a waste via CNN opinion article:

http://www.cnn.com/2013/12/16/health/multivitamins-studies/

Doctors and Nutrition Training:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2430660/

A doctor says nutrition training is needed in medical school:

http://www.kevinmd.com/blog/2011/12/nutrition-taught-medical-school.html

FDA issues:
http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/01/09/fda.scientists/

http://tinyurl.com/jwojfgn

http://tinyurl.com/3r5wghn

Book: Our Daily Meds  by Melody Petersen.

Please let me know your thoughts or frustrations related to this issue.

Patients and their care should be the focus as it relates to vitamins/supplements.

Happy 2014, everyone!

UrbanHealthyChick

Food is Addictive Part 2!

 

Recently, there was an important study about food and addiction. This study showed that rats’ brain function when permitted to consume oreos would react similarly to that of an addict on drugs such as cocaine. The scary part is that the rats would eat the center of the cookie, which is white cream. Of course, the food industry is disputing the findings. These types of finds have been outlined in many books such as The End of Overeating, Born with a Junk Food Deficiency, movies such as Fast Food Nation, and Forks over Knives etc. Is this important? It is because there is a focus on personal healthcare accountability and shaming of those overweight. (See my post Who are you calling fat, Willis?) Large multinational food organizations engineer food via product development to be addictive to humans on purpose. The research via rats supports the argument of obesity as a disease such as addiction, which is a disease. Let’s look at an example that is faced by some Americans every day.

Here goes. Retailers across America sell a known addictive productive such as oreos or another processed food. It is accessible everywhere, however some communities have limited access to alternative non addictive/healthier products. Citizens unknowingly consume this product resulting in becoming addicted, obese, and sick, however there are no resources to support detoxifying from this or are there any easily accessible alternatives. Also society will shame this individual for their poor life decisions; however the person knows little or nothing about the addictive nature of the food available to them. In a general sense, this situation is posed to poor and uneducated consumers in some communities across the nation.

The conversation needs to change about processed food, obesity, and health in society.

  1. The food industry needs to admit to engineering products that are in some instances known carcinogenic, addictive, and unnatural products such as “Chicken Nuggets”, potato chips.
  2. Second, institutions need to embrace the medical classification of obesity along with that of food addiction.
  3. Please stop shaming those that are overweight and try to have empathy about their situation.
  4. A public health effort is need to educate and create more access to better food. The solution to this problem is being found in places like Chester, PA and with the former leader at Trader Joe creating profitable and healthy alternatives.

 

See articles below about the addictive nature of the food engineered by companies.

Links:

Rats and oreo article link: http://www.latimes.com/food/dailydish/la-dd-oreo-cookies-addictive-cocaine-20131016,0,3166408.story

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/24/magazine/the-extraordinary-science-of-junk-food.html?_r=0

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/05/130522095807.htm

Lastly a short video that is very interesting.