Flavour of the Week

TGIF


We’re back! After an unintentional semester-long hiatus to get settled in after moving across the country (Kristin) and wrap up data collection on a massive research study (Jill), we are feeling rejuvenated for 2015!

  • So much for “healthier” fast food! Data from the USDA suggests the only significant change in the nutritional content of fast food is the decline in trans fat – we’re going to chalk this one up to new legislation, not so much industry concern. Calories, sodium and fat content, however, have not appreciably changed in the last twenty years despite what commercials might say.
  • A new year, a new set of resolutions! Here are some great tips from the Globe & Mail if you are looking for some simple, often-overlooking ideas. We’re definitely adding “take charge of technology” and “stand tall” to our list!
  • TGIFDr. Brian Wansink of Cornell University was a guest on CBC radio’s The Current to promote his book, Slim By Design, and shared some really interesting findings and tips. Get the fruit bowl on the counter, stat! People with fruit bowls on their counter weigh less 10 lbs less, on average, than neighbours who don’t. Those with cereal out? They weigh 10 lbs MORE! For more tips on fixing your “food radius” click here to listen to full podcast.
  • In a survey of nearly 600 adults, University of Houston researchers found a significant link between TV viewing time and eating unhealthy food. While this is nothing new, the researchers also found poorer nutrition knowledge among heavy TV watchers as well as a “fatalistic” view towards nutrition; something along the lines of: “Nutrition is too complicated and confusing to do anything about”. Could this have something to do with all of the contracting information and pseudoscience presented on some TV shows?
  • Blueberries and avocado were the “one a day keeps the doctor away” foods this week:

    Researchers at Florida State University found eating the equivalent of one cup of blueberries per day (they used freeze-dried powder) reduced blood pressure and arterial stiffness in postmenopausal women over 8-weeks compared with placebo. What is arterial stiffness? It’s the loss of elasticity in your blood vessels – often as a result of atherosclerotic plaque build-up – that damages your heart.

    In other heart-healthy findings, having an avocado per day – a source of healthy monounsaturated fats – in combination with a moderate fat diet significantly lowered “bad” LDL cholesterol in a small group of obese adults. Keep in mind, guacamole and chips probably isn’t the best way to get avocados in your diet! But this is more proof the low-fat paradigm is being replaced by the importance of healthy fats.
  • Congrats to our colleague Casey Berglund, RD, RYT on launching a new website, Worthy & Well. Check out her “What’s Your Eating Personality? quiz for some insight into what might be motivating your food choices.
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