The Fruit Juice Craze

How many times do you drink a 100% fruit juice smoothie thinking that the “natural” sugars are good for you? In reality, that natural sugar is misconstrued for healthy, and is worded that way to trick consumers. The “regular” sugars added to the junk food you love: cakes, soda, and sweets, is called cane sugar, and it has a bad reputation, especially standing next to “natural” sugars. But your body processes both sugars the exact same way, which means yes, those juices FULL of “natural” sugars aren’t much better for you than a soda.

Don’t Panic: Fruit is Still Healthy

Before you swear off fruit and start vegetable loading, fruits are still good for you. Just in moderation of course, like everything else. The sugar in fruits is not that healthy, the healthy part is the fiber and antioxidants the fruit obtains. The fruit juice craze that’s stolen the world, is stripped of the fiber found in the fruit before it’s blended. The juice is not a problem, and can still be a regular in your diet. However, the problem comes with the ease of drinking it leading to over-consumption.

The Breakdown

Here’s the facts: 12 ounces of Coca-Cola contains 39 grams of sugar. But the same amount of fruit juice, just 12 ounces, has 53 grams of sugar. As facts have it, grape juice has more sugar than soda, and your body treats that sugar the same way, but soda has a much worse reputation than grape juice.

But Why Does This Matter?

So now that you know the sugars that are going into your body, you should also know how it’s affecting it. It starts with carbohydrates, like sugar. These carbs are broken down in the body, and the sugar ends up in your blood. Your body releases a hormone called insulin to take that sugar out of your blood and into your cells, resulting in energy for your body. When you consume a lot of carbohydrates, your body has to release a lot of insulin. The excess insulin is then stored in the body as fat. This can then cause weight gain, which no one wants, and leads to many other health problems.

The second problem is that excess sugar causes excess insulin in the bloodstream. This can also affect your arteries, stressing the heart and causing damage over time, which sounds just as bad as it is. But that excess sugar and excess insulin can cause a resistance to insulin, also known as Type 2 diabetes. The excess sugar intake is also believed to be linked to a greater risk of depression.

This is Not The End…For Sugar

The problems associated with too much sugar are almost endless. While I am not an advocate to cut sugar out completely, I am an advocate to eat it in moderation, just like everything else. Dietitian’s can work with you to create a healthier lifestyle that includes your favorite foods and beverages while learning how to moderate them. Sugar isn’t bad…but too much sugar is.

Follow me: on Facebook at Dietitian Plus, Instagram and Twitter: @dietitianplus to see how living life to the max can be paired with healthy decisions.

To Diet, or Not to Diet?

Diets Don’t Work. Period.

How many times have you started a diet on a Monday just to be done by Wednesday, ready to start again next week. Diets create unrealistic goals focused around fast weight loss in a short time period.

What happens when that diet is over?

A diet can definitely help you get some weight off really fast in the beginning, especially if you are restricting calories to do it. But over time, you will find yourself craving the things you restrict, and as soon as you start eating the foods you’ve been restricting, you’ll gain the weight back so fast. That binge after dieting that you experience could make you even heavier than you were in the beginning. It’s healthier to have a stable weight, than to have your weight go up and down. The goal should be slow and steady weight loss using techniques that involve small changes to make the goals obtainable. Obtainable goals allow for motivation as you achieve and succeed. An example of an achievable goal that I have right now is to be consistent with my physical activity. My goal is to spend 30 minutes to an hour, 6 days per week doing both cardio and weight training. This is a goal that I get to achieve, and be satisfied with my results, on a weekly basis. This gives me motivation to keep moving forward.They say it takes 21 days to create a habit, something I have seen to be true again and again. Work with a dietitian to see what multiple small-scale achievable goals will help you get where you want to get. Slow and steady wins the race!

Problem 1: Restrictions

Diets are all about restrictions. Whether it’s calories, carbs, fat, or dessert, restricting food is not the answer. What happens when you can’t resist the temptation anymore? You become obsessed with all things food. Want to know what that leads to?

Binge eating!!!! (NOT GOOD)

Here’s the deal: food is fuel. We need food to give us energy and keep our body working properly. When you restrict calories, your metabolism slows down, and when your metabolism slows down, you hold onto fat. Essentially, you are in survival mode.

By working with a dietitian, you can learn appropriate portion sizes, and if you’re a numbers person, you can learn the appropriate amount of calories your body needs. But working with a dietitian does not mean restricting calories, or anything.

It means learning how to fit healthy living into your current lifestyle to make it a long-term adjustment that allows you to feel healthy, look healthy, be healthy, and live your life the way you want to.

Problem 2: Life Gets In The Way

Diets make you miss out on social situations because you don’t want to mess up the diet you’re following. How long can you do that for? If you find yourself missing out because you’re afraid of temptations, then let me help you. Food isn’t bad. An excessive amount of food is bad, but food in general is not bad.

No matter what it is, you just have to learn how to eat an appropriate portion. That goes for literally anything you eat. Kale is good for you, but in moderation. Too much Kale can cause negative implications because of the high amount of Vitamin K in it. Avocados are good for you, but too much avocado provides excessive amounts of fat. Do you see what I mean? It doesn’t matter what the food is, it matters what the portion is. Don’t let food keep you from joining in on the fun of a party. Learn how to portion control. Portion control is key to a healthy life.

The Difference in Dietitian Plus

Here’s an example of how I fit healthy eating into my life. On Super Bowl Sunday I knew there was going to be a lot of tempting delicious snacks to indulge in. I didn’t want to eat so much that I felt terrible. So I grabbed a plate, filled it with salad, and added some chicken wings on the side. As I picked the meat off the wings, I ate the meat with salad, essentially creating my own chicken salad. When I was finished eating, I was so full that I didn’t even want to eat a lot of the other snacks that were there, and I didn’t feel like I missed out because I got the eat chicken wings, which are a must-have on Super Bowl Sunday!

What I’m trying to say is that you don’t need any special diet to lose weight or be healthy. You just need the right tools and education to know how food impacts your body. Trust in the dietitians at Dietitian Plus. We can help you get on the right path to a healthy future. All it takes is the courage to reach out to us. We can take it from there ☺

Follow me: on Facebook at Dietitian Plus, Instagram and Twitter: @dietitianplus to see how living life to the max can be paired with healthy decisions.

Navigating Thanksgiving Dinner (without the sacrifice)

Tips, Tricks, and Your Thanksgiving Fix 

Thanksgiving is right around the corner, literally just a few workdays away. No, I am not here to tell you to sit out of the family feast and munch on carrots, because that’s just not a practical request and we all know none of us could actually skip the turkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing galore. What I am gonna do is give you a few important tips to avoid completely overstuffing yourself this holiday season.

Get The Most of Your Morning

It’s especially important on a day that you know you’re going to be eating more than your normal amount of calories, to have a good workout. It will get your metabolism started, and help burn off some calories you’ll be sure to eat later. Starting off the day with a great workout will make you feel less guilty after dessert, trust me.

Make sure to continue your morning with a hearty and healthy breakfast. Most people think skipping this part of the day on Thanksgiving will save them calories, and help them eat more later. But it’s important to nourish your body after a good workout. Make sure the breakfast is full of all your morning essentials: carbs, protein, and healthy fats! Eating a nutritious breakfast will keep you full for a long time and prevent overeating later during the main course.

* Recipe Alert! Try my favorite (and easiest) oatmeal recipe

“Reese’s” Peanut Butter Oatmeal (2 Servings)

– 1 cup of oats
– 1 3/4 cup milk
– 2 tbsp peanut butter
– 1 sliced banana
– 2 tbsp dark chocolate chips

– Place oats and milk into a pot and cook on the stove top on medium heat until the milk is absorbed and the oats are soft.
– Whisk in the peanut butter until fully incorporated, then fold in the sliced banana
– Split between 2 bowls and top each with 1 tbsp of dark chocolate chips

Healthy Mind, Healthy Body

 Keeping yourself hydrated is an everyday necessity. It’s so easy to overlook your daily water intake, but it’s more important than you think. Water helps your body stay hydrated to properly function, and prevents false hunger cues. But wait, what the heck are false hunger cues? Sometimes, you might think you are hungry, but really it’s just your body getting confused, and signaling a hunger cue. Think about all the times you thought you were hungry, but were really just thirsty, leading to so many extra calories. But now you know to drink plenty of water, especially during the holidays to avoid that.

Eating a small bowl of soup before you eat dinner can prevent you form overeating. Keep it low calorie (but still tasteful) and enjoy on a crisp Thanksgiving day!

*Recipe Alert! Check out this fall inspired soup, perfect for a crisp thanksgiving day!

Peanut Butter and Sweet Potato Bisque (6 Servings)

– 2 large sweet potatoes, diced
-2 tbsp canola oil
-1 sweet onion, chopped
-3 garlic cloves, minced
-3 cups low sodium tomato juice
-2 tsp minced fresh ginger
-1 tsp allspice
-1, 15oz can low sodium vegetable broth
-1/2 cup smooth peanut butter

-Heat a medium sized pot over the stove top and add the canola oil.
-Add the onion and sweet potato and cook, stirring occasionally until the onions are translucent. Add the garlic, ginger, and all spice. Cook for 1 more minute.
-Add the tomato juice, and vegetable broth to the pot and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down and allow to simmer until the sweet potato is soft.
-Using an immersion blender, carefully blend the soup to a puree. Whisk in the peanut butter.

Time For Some Stretchy Pants, Or Not

When you first grab your Thanksgiving plate, start with the vegetables. Believe it or not, you always take bigger portions when the plate is empty. With this logic you’ll be taking in more vegetables than anything else, because the rest of the portions will be smaller, therefore you’re consuming less calories.

Slow down! Eat your food slowly, and engage in more conversation with your family. Eating slower allows you to digest and gives your brain time to send signals to tell you when you’re full. Stop eating when you’re full, and if you feel like you want to eat more because it’s so delicious, pack some up for lunch tomorrow. When you eat too fast your brain can’t send the brain signal until it’s too late.

BYOB. Bring your own low calorie cocktails to sip on throughout the day, instead of drinking the heavy stuff. This is a way to still have some fun with your family, but not overload on dinner and cocktail calories.

 Enjoy the Day and Build New Memories

The most important thing to remember, is to enjoy the holiday. You don’t have to be perfect all the time, you just have to live your life the best you can. If that means taking a day to overload on calories, just cut back the rest of the week. Make healthy choices every chance you can, but don’t give up everything you love. Just learning and educating yourself to change bad choices into better choices is a step in the right direction to a healthier lifestyle!

Follow me: on Facebook at Dietitian Plus, Instagram and Twitter: @dietitianplus to see how living life to the max can be paired with healthy decisions.

Meal Prepping Made Easy


Dreading a Diet?
When you think about living a healthy lifestyle, it’s always “I’ll start Monday,” right? For some reason the healthy lifestyle that everyone strives for has a nasty reputation of being expensive, difficult, and tasteless. Nutritious food doesn’t have to taste like cardboard, and as a consulting Registered Dietitian I am here to teach you how to make healthy food that tastes amazing, and how you can easily pair it with an active and hearty lifestyle. I promise that I can train you to live the fulfilling life you want in a way that doesn’t feel like a chore but does make you feel amazing. Starting can be as simple as connecting with me on an app. Instead of logging everything you eat, you just send me a picture on the app and I’ll give you quick feedback. With exercise goals I can be there to hold you accountable and inspire you to reach your workout aspirations. It will become such second nature that these small lifestyle tweaks won’t be painful.

To Meal Prep, or Not to Meal Prep
Everyone’s been there. Meal prepping is easy at first, and most likely you were excited to start. But after a few weeks it becomes old news: time consuming and just another chore. Meal prepping is important, it helps keep me on track and makes sure I get all nutrients throughout my week. Meal prepping doesn’t have to be dreadful. Here’s some tips I found for making meal prepping painless.

1. Do it all at once.

I spend about 30 minutes once a week on planning my menu for the next seven days. My menu usually includes a healthy breakfast, two different snacks, and different lunches and dinners. Once you plan a menu, it’s easy to make a grocery list and also makes it less likely you’ll forget anything at the store.

2.Sunday Cooking.

Sometimes if my week is going to be totally chaotic I cook everything when I have time on a Sunday. I usually prep some overnight oats for the week and pack my lunches. I don’t have to do this every week, but I’m really glad when I do, especially for those extra crazy weeks.

3.Daily lunch and dinner preps.

For those Sundays that I don’t want to prep the week, I make extra food for dinner every night so I can pack it for lunch the next day. This is my most popular method because it’s the easiest and I don’t completely dread every Sunday with this method.

In the end, finding what works best for you is the most important, and together we can figure out what fits best with your lifestyle. A healthy lifestyle doesn’t have to be a chore and with my help I’ll teach you how to incorporate it in ways that are barely noticeable in your routine, but will make a big impact in the way you look and feel.

Follow me: on Facebook at Dietitian Plus, Instagram and Twitter: @dietitianplus to see how living life to the max can be paired with healthy decisions.

Football Sunday

Are You Ready For Some Football?

When fall rolls around and pumpkin spice is in the air, it means one thing in particular at my house: Football Sunday. No matter what team you root for, that crisp fall air and food galore is something you dream about all year long. The true test of self control comes when the appetizers are served. Do you fill up on them before dinner and find yourself stuffed? I do. But over the years I’ve come up with a few key tips that I bring with me to the football party and find myself actually enjoying the dinner served, because I’m not rolling around and overly stuffed on appetizers.

Becoming a part of the breakfast club

Sure breakfast food is great, but who has the time to eat it. We have all seen the studies about how much people can benefit from a nice balanced breakfast, but sleeping in is just too tempting sometimes. On Football Sunday, I make sure to eat a breakfast that’s gonna start my day right. It’s Sunday so everyone has time for a good breakfast, right? Eating breakfast and lunch before the party will make sure you’re not starving which ultimately stops you from overeating. Check out my camping blog for a great lunch idea!

Never Show up Empty Handed

You would never show up to a party empty handed, so try bringing an appetizer that doesn’t make you gain 10 lbs. instantly. Bringing a healthy appetizer will give you something to munch on instead of those unhealthy options.

Recipe Alert!!!

Crockpot Chicken Nachos

1 Jar of Salsa Verde
1.5lb Chicken Breast
1 Bag whole grain Tostitos Tortilla Chips
1 Can (15oz)  Black Beans, Drained and rinsed
2 Cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese
1 Diced Avocado
2 Cups Shredded Romaine Lettuce
1/4 cup chopped Cilantro
1 Cup Fat free Greek Yogurt
2 Cups chopped tomato

For the Chicken: Cook salsa verde, and chicken in a crockpot on low for 6-8 hours until the chicken is cooked through all the way. Then shred with a fork.

For the nachos: Layer whole grain tortilla chips, the shredded chicken, black beans, and shredded cheddar cheese. Bake it at 350 degrees until the cheese is melted . Take it out of the oven and top it with diced avocado, diced tomato, chopped cilantro, shredded lettuce, and non-fat greek yogurt.

Hint: The fresher your ingredients the better the flavor!

The Classic H2O Approach

Drinking water on Football Sunday has so many benefits.A glass of water between adults beverages will keep you hydrated and prevent a nasty Monday hangover. Plus, it slows your drinking down and helps you consume less beverage calories. If you stay hydrated you’ll be less tempted to munch on appetizers because you’ll feel fuller. So altogether a little H2O goes a long way helping you prevent excessive beverage and appetizer calories!

Mini Workout

Whether your watching the game or chatting around the kitchen, try standing instead of sitting (out of the way of the TV of course). The game can run a long time, so if you’re standing then your burning easy calories without a major workout.

Small Change, Big Difference

Even just implementing one of these tips could go a long way for your Sunday. But always remember that everything in moderation is okay, if you want that buffalo chicken dip, eat that buffalo chicken dip. The faster you implement healthy choice into your daily life, the faster it becomes a habit and you don’t even realize it’s happening. Am I going to turn down wings or wine on football Sunday? Absolutely not! But to make up for it I’ll switch to healthier appetizers and standing through the game!

Follow me: on Facebook at Dietitian Plus, Instagram and Twitter: @dietitianplus to see how living life to the max can be paired with healthy decisions.

Being Healthy is a Lifestyle

 A new trend that’s blowing up in today’s society is healthy living. Unfortunately, while it’s an easy trend to fake it till you make it, healthy living takes hard work and a lot of self control. Making healthy choices can be a lifestyle instead of chore, and I, a registered dietitian, am here to teach people who want to accomplish healthy minds and healthy bodies in a healthy way. My mission is to provide affordable nutrition education to people who want to live their life happily and healthfully.

My Story

Going into college I knew I had a passion, but like every other college student I wasn’t completely sure where that passion was. I love food, just as much as the next girl, and I knew I wanted to work around my love for food, so I went to college with a dream of baking and pastry, complete opposite of where I ended up, I know. But it took studying that food and really understanding what the ingredients were and how they worked for me to figure out my passion for nutrition. So when I went into the real world to work as a cook, it finally hit me that I didn’t want to work long hours slaving over the stove, because it turns out that baking and pastry wasn’t what I loved.

But I wasn’t giving up on the food dream yet. I talked to some people and took a few days to try and figure out where my life was headed when I found my true love: culinary nutrition.

Fast forward five years and I got my degree in Culinary Nutrition and made it through a vigorous internship, all to earn the title Lindsay Salvatore, RD (Registered Dietitian).

Making Goals a New Norm

I am a firm believer in making goals and then crushing them. Let me work with you to talk about goals: whether it be weight-loss, fixing bad lab results, living with diabetes, lowering high cholesterol, or just craving a healthier lifestyle. I’m trained to work with all these concerns and confident that I can get you the results you want. By tweaking your current lifestyle in the most effective of ways, you can make major changes, and I want to be a part of those changes and coach you into healthier habits. Working with me gives you the guidance, support, and accountability you need to get going and to keep going.

For those of you that think this is some kind of diet, and are also thinking that diets never work for you, this is not a diet. A lifestyle change isn’t something you try for a month, its a practice you master with years.

Follow me: on Facebook at Dietitian Plus, Instagram and Twitter: @dietitianplus to see how living life to the max can be paired with healthy decisions.

Camping With A Kick

So many of us dream of vacation just to get through the work week, and with Fall just around the corner, now is the perfect time to connect with nature through some good old fashioned tent camping (or “glamping” if that’s your kind of vacation). But camping doesn’t have to mean days full of food regret followed by weeks of trying to get your body back in order. With a plan and some motivation camping can be a fun-filled weekend getaway with no remorse.

A Weekend Getaway For The Books
For weeks I’ve been trying to think of a fun getaway for Labor Day weekend, and with a spur of the moment decision my husband, dog, and I were in the car for seven and a half hours on our way to Mt. Washington, in New Hampshire. I always try to incorporate new ways to stay healthy on the go into my life, and this weekend was no exception. While I had the time of my life, I also have no regrets when it comes to how I ate and I came home feeling just as good about myself as when I left. Here’s how I did it!

Breakfast of Champions
What’s a better breakfast than eggs? While you may be in a campground with little resources for cooking real food, a grill rack to put over your campfire is a great investment. It can hold pots and pans, or you can just grill right on the rack. Eggs in a pan over the fire or oatmeal cooking in a pot are great day-starters and will give you lasting energy for vacation fun.

When the Lunch Munchies Hit
Lunch doesn’t have to mean a fast food run. An easy lunch on-the-go can be a chicken salad sandwich (light on the mayo of course) that you can prepare before leaving your house for vacation. For some extra nutritious value just add a few vegetables. I threw some carrots into a food processor and mixed them in, then chopped onions for an extra crunch. Nuts, grapes, or dried cranberries are great for flavor, texture, and nutrition. Put the chicken salad on whole wheat bread, or sandwich thin, which is my preference because they are smaller than bread and I don’t feel like I’m missing out on anything. Wrap your sandwich up with some plastic wrap for easy traveling, keep in a small cooler and off you go. When lunch comes around there is no more struggling to find the “healthy” option on the fast food menu.

Finish it Up With Dinner
Dinner can be done back at the campsite over that nifty grill rack that fits right over your fire. If you marinate your chicken before you even leave your house you can just throw it on the grill rack for an easy and fast dinner that doesn’t take hours to prep and grill. Just make sure to properly store the chicken in a cooler until you’re ready to cook! Prepare some veggies and store them in foil so when the chicken is grilling you can just throw the veggies on the fire too. Then grab some corn on the cob or a few potatoes to complete your meal, adding the starch to your protein and vegetables.

2 Cups of chopped broccoli mixed with 2tbsp of olive oil, 1tsp of garlic powder, 1tsp of onion powder, 1/2tsp of ground black pepper and just a pinch of salt. Wrap in aluminum foil and store in your cooler. When at your campsite and preparing for dinner, place on your rack over the fire and allow to cook, mixing occasionally until soft and starting to brown!

Diet AND Exercise
While food is a major key to keeping up your healthy lifestyle on vacation, it’s important to also stay active and plan activities to keep you moving. I personally am a big fan of mountain top yoga. For this camping trip in particular, I couldn’t do it because I had my dog with me, but I always love the added views of mountain top yoga instead of my everyday routine. It only costs about $15-$20 a person and it really helps kickstart your day in the right direction. Can you even imagine the serenity of starting your day with yoga and a view?

Hike up Your Skirt
Hiking is another great adventure for thrill seekers, and for staying in shape. Taking a hike can be great for any level of fitness because of the different trails that line the mountain to incorporate different skill sets. Its a great way to fit in a cardio workout without even realizing it, and to enjoy yourself. Try to find a hike with beautiful and unique scenery, that way you don’t even realize the workout you’re getting because of the new experience.

Whatever you end up doing, try to stick to some kind of workout routine. Whether it be on a yoga mat in your campsite or a yoga mat on a mountain. There are videos that can be downloaded to your smart device, or you can just jot a workout down on a piece of paper. Any workout is more than no workout!

Keeping up The Vacation Vibes
Going on vacation doesn’t mean sacrificing your healthy lifestyle, just like having a healthy lifestyle doesn’t mean sacrificing everything you love. Being more conscious about the decisions you make, even while camping, will go a long way. Finding time to exercise and eat healthy can make indulging in that s’more or hotdog over the fire even more satisfying and a lot less guilt ridden. It’s all about moderation.

Follow me: on Facebook at Dietitian Plus, Instagram and Twitter: @dietitianplus to see how living life to the max can be paired with healthy decisions.

Coconut Crazy

All Hail: Coconut Oil…Or Not

The coconut oil craze that’s taking the beauty and nutrition world by storm is something everyone wants to learn more about. However, this topic is one that conflicts me, because even though I want to believe that coconut oil can save my life, there are limited long-term research studies done that can prove positive effects. That means most of these miracle uses for coconut oil are found in home remedies. But before you freak out and throw away all the coconut oil in your house, there is still some science backed proof that coconut oil does benefit our bodies in some ways.

Total Trim Down

Great news: what you heard about coconut oil being great for weight loss is most likely true, and this theory is backed by the scientific makeup of the oil. I’m sure everyone has also heard that coconut oil is high in saturated fat, which is often associated with heart disease. But unlike the saturated fats butter and lard, coconut oil is broken down differently, and made into energy after being taken from the liver to the GI tract.

  Why does the body treat coconut oil differently? Coconut oil fat is made up of “medium chain triglycerides,” while other saturated fats are made up of “long-chain triglycerides.” So no more worrying about the high fat controversy in coconut oil that’s stirring the internet right now, because it still helps you lose more weight than the other guys.

Fun Facts

Here’s a great myth that is very possibly true: the fat in coconut oil may support less inflammation in the body. While no long-term study has proved it yet, it’s believed to decrease the chance of diabetes and autoimmune diseases (diseases where the body attacks its own healthy cells). Some people have even gone as far as to say that coconut oil saved their lives.

Antioxidants Galore

Coconut oil is rich with antioxidants, which we have all learned are great for our body. Basically, the compound that coconut oil is full of provides reactive oxygen molecules with what they need to repair themselves. Complicated? Yes, but also very important when it comes to a healthy body.

So What’s the Catch?

Like everything else in this world, coconut oil should be used in moderation because even though it has benefits, this oil is also pretty high in fat, as in one tablespoon equaling 14g kind of high! And even though that famous ‘vlogger’ you may watch swears that cooking with coconut oil changed their life, just keep in mind that the smoke point is only 350 degrees, and other healthy options like extra virgin olive oil have a smoke point of 410 degrees making them much better options when it comes to cooking, especially when it comes to the price.

At the end of the day, if you like coconut oil, you just have to keep in mind thateverything is okay in moderation. I never tell people to cut anything out of their diet (unless it involves an allergy or intolerance). So if you like coconut oil, just use it in a balanced way with other superfoods!

Follow me: on Facebook at Dietitian Plus, Instagram and Twitter: @dietitianplus to see how living life to the max can be paired with healthy decisions.