Subject: Dietitians of the Week

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Dietitians of the Week
Check our Facebook page every weekday for our RD of the Day, as we put a much-deserved spotlight on a dietitian who's either making headlines or writing them and delivering their expertise through the media. Here are this week's featured RDs.

Jessica Lind, RD, CD Twitter
For better or worse, the election season is intensifying as we're a month away from choosing our next President and so many other federal, state and local representatives.

Monday's RD of the Day takes the election theme and runs straight into nutrition with it. In her column for the LaCrosse (WI) Tribune, Gunderson Health System dietitian Jessica Lind grabs the readers' attention by titling it "What are you voting for?"

In this case, "voting" represents the choices we make, especially at the supermarket. Jessica explains that consumer choices determine what's available. Many people think their purchases are limited by the market and by what retailers have available. In most cases, Jessica says, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

Your food purchases affect so much more than just you and your family," the nutrition therapist explains. "Every item you buy has an influence upon the market. If you want to see more healthy options on the shelves, you simply have to stop buying the unhealthy ones."

As an example of this concept, Jessica cites the gluten-free health trend. "Fifteen years ago, hardly anyone had heard of celiac disease and most didn’t even know what gluten was. But as more light has been shed on this area of health, more people are going on a gluten-free diet and more and more gluten-free foods are appearing on store shelves."

She goes on to explain that food choices should be made in conjunction with dietitians and trusted medical professionals and, as a general rule, whole foods such as fruits and vegetables, lean meats and whole grains should form the bulk of your diet.

For illustrating how, in presidential elections and grocery store purchases alike, every vote counts, Jessica was our Monday RD of the Day.

Read the article: What are you voting for?

Dr. Felicia Stoler, DCN, MS, RDN, FACSM Facebook Twitter
No matter how hard one tries, especially as the holidays approach, it’s easy to fall prey to eating errors that unintentionally hold you back from getting the most out of your workouts.

Tuesday's RD of the Day reviews four common missteps and helps viewers and readers of WISH-TV in Indianapolis get set on the right path to avoid gaining holiday weight.

Dr. Felicia Stoler, dietitian, health fitness specialist, and author, delivers the strong professional advice in "4 mistakes people make with food and exercise".

Felicia details the four mistakes both in writing and during a TV segment posted here, including eating too little fat, not eating after a workout, and eating the wrong protein or at the wrong time.

The fourth mistake is using a sports drink when you don’t really need one because, as Felicia exclaims, "just one 20-ounce bottle means consuming a surplus of 35 grams of sugar!"

For identifying these errors and for always promoting both diet AND exercise, Felicia was Tuesday’s RD of the Day.

Read the article: 4 mistakes people make with food and exercise

Amy Valle, RDN Facebook
Our Wednesday RD of the Day discusses the important topic of weight loss and how to navigate it smartly and safely.

In her "Ask The Dietitian" feature in D Magazine (Dallas, TX), Amy Valle, an RD who specializes in eating disorders and compulsive overeating, offers a professional perspective on this topic that’s often talked about but rarely understood.

The dietitian/owner at Bloom & Zest and RD at the esteemed The Renfrew Center in Dallas starts with her three best tips for someone who is embarking on a new weight loss and health journey.

She also asked about which foods best promote weight loss and health in general. "At the end of the day, the most important thing you can learn how to do is eat balanced meals, listen to your body, and move your body," she explains, along with this caveat. "most dietitians (who, mind you, have the most education around nutritional science) will never support a magic pill or food. Usually the people who do are trying to sell a product or are just uneducated."

In addition to recommending buying a cool new water bottle to encourage more hydration, Amy offers sound, sensible, and professional advice to those who has always had a mindset of weight loss versus achieving total health.

"Always, always go with your health. The weight will follow in the direction that’s healthy for you in time."

For delivering the expertise here and every day in her work, Amy was Wednesday’s RD of the Day.

Read the article: Ask a Dietitian: Navigating Weight Loss

Lisa Andrews, MEd, RD, LD Facebook Twitter
The headline of the article written by Thursday's RD of the Day on says it all: "Nutrition Matters More than We Want to Think".

"If you don’t think diet-related illness is real, walk through an ICU and see a person fighting for their life on a mechanical ventilator connected to multiple tubes and pumps. It is devastating," says Lisa Andrews, MEd, RD, LD.

Lisa's article discusses her background working in an acute-care hospital ICU and advising so many people and their doctors on tube feeding and IV nutrition for patients who could no longer swallow due to esophageal cancer or whose bowels had shut down due to end stage colon cancer.

As an RD, it made her think: "Why do people continue to eat (or drink) themselves to death when there’s so much science to support a cleaner way of living?"

Lisa explains to readers that consuming good food and beverages is one of life’s biggest pleasures, but in excess, it can destroy people. Admitting her own failings with food, Lisa goes on to discuss how taken for granted nutrition is with regard to quality of life and longenvity.

She closes with a nugget of wisdom. "Eating right might just save your life."

For sharing her story and emphasizing the importance of nutrition to her community, Lisa was Thursday’s RD of the Day.

Read the article: Nutrition Matters More than We Want to Think

Jennifer Cantwell Wood, MPH, RD, LDN  
In today's piece in the Greensboro (NC) News & Record, titled "We've Got the Food, Now What?", Friday's RD of the Day says that simply making healthy foods available isn’t enough to improve the eating habits of people.

"Research shows that if you have a food desert, just popping in a grocery store or other outlet doesn’t solve the problem," explains Jennifer Cantwell Wood, MPH, RD, LDN. "Eating healthy is very multifactorial. The idea is to give people more information and empowerment to use that."

The article focuses on the local story of how parts of northeast Greensboro will soon gain access to healthy food via community co-ops and urban farming programs.

Food deserts, located in impoverished areas that are mostly urban, are lacking fresh fruit, vegetables and other healthful whole foods. Getting the produce into the communities is hard enough, but, in a community that hasn’t had access to produce for about 20 years, changing eating patterns could be a difficult task.

A grant used to create the urban farm’s greenhouse requires that part be used to make the community comfortable with healthier choices, Wood said.

In a series of seminars late in 2015, Wood taught 72 people (in two groups) good nutritional habits at the Edible Schoolyard Greensboro Children's Museum, where children can learn to grow food and prepare it.

Organizers want people to know how to get maximum nutrition from their food. Part of the solution to the nutrition puzzle is creating healthy habits. It seems to be working. Jennifer says that near the end of the seminars, she had a client approach her.

"At the beginning of this thing, everybody was showing up with Mountain Dew and snacks," the client said. "Now, everybody’s drinking water."

For rolling up her sleeves and really using her expertise for the good of her community, Jennifer was our well-deserved Friday RD of the Day.

Read the article: We’ve Got the Food, Now What?