The Center for the Study of Human Health and Emory Dining recently sponsored a Talk & Cooking Demo by Registered Dietitian Wendy Jo Peterson at Food EU.
With final exams right around the corner, over 100 students turned out to hear her talk about how to fuel your body and mind for optimal health and energy. The students learned how to make a great tasting green smoothie, a health boosting kinky kale salad and a tropical chia pudding. Her recipes require few ingredients and no cooking at all! They were simple, quick and easy to make. Best of all, they passed the student taste test and were declared delicious!
Wendy Jo’s green smoothie is as simple counting 4-3-2-1.
- 4 handfuls of fresh spinach
- 3 tablespoons of cocoa powder
- 2 bananas
- 1 tablespoon of peanut butter
- Milk of your choice (cow, almond, coconut, soy are common choices)
Put all ingredients in a blender, add milk until the mixture blends smoothly and is a consistency you like. Enjoy!
Ms. Peterson is a Registered Dietitian who works to inspire others to cook more, eat smarter, and approach life as though it’s worth tasting. She is the author of the Mediterranean Diet Cookbook for Dummies and hosts a radio show on nutrition.
Author: Lisa DuPree, Center for the Study of Human Health
Emory undergraduate Sandy Jiang recently presented the results of her summer research project at the SURE (Summer Undergraduate Research Program at Emory) research symposium. The SURE program provides research training opportunities for undergraduate students over the summer break. Sandy completed her research under the supervision of Dr. Cassandra Quave and the Center for the Study of Human Health. Sandy’s research project, entitled “A Comparison of Traditional Food and Health Strategies among Taiwanese and Chinese Immigrants in Atlanta”, examined traditional knowledge and practices related to food and health . Sandy plans to continue work on this project in the fall and submit a manuscript for publication.
Abstract from the study:
Introduction: Traditional knowledge (TK) systems can play a crucial role in local health strategies and outcomes, especially among migrant communities. The aims of this study are to (1) compare traditional knowledge and practices related to food and health of Taiwanese and Chinese immigrants in metro Atlanta; (2) evaluate how immigrants adapt to new medicinal frameworks; and (3) document the use of medicinal foods and local substitutes as they relate to human health in these communities.
Methods: Snowball sampling techniques were used to recruit 50 adult informants (≥ 18 years-old) from the Chinese and Taiwanese immigrant communities in metro Atlanta for participation in semi-structured interviews and structured surveys regarding the use of the local flora for medicinal and food purposes. Standard ethnobotanical methods were employed and prior informed consent was obtained for all study participants. Voucher specimens of quoted species were collected for deposit at the Emory University Herbarium.
Results: A total of 44 medicinal and/or “healthy” food plants were cited by informants as being central to their traditional health practices. Taiwanese were more likely to use Eastern medicine, plant their own food gardens, believe in the concepts of Yin and Yang, and use certain medicinal foods more than their Chinese counterparts.
Conclusions: TK concerning medical and nutritional practices of immigrant communities represents a fundamental aspect to the study of human health. Results from studies focused on the documentation and analysis of local health strategies can be used to facilitate better communication, bridging the gap between biomedical healthcare providers and users of Complementary and Alternative Medical (CAM) strategies in immigrant communities.
Posted in Botanical Medicine, Health Care, Nutrition, Research
Tagged botanical medicine, diet, food, health, health strategies, immigrants, Nutrition, research
Nutrition is not just what you eat, but also how much of each item you consume. One major change that is cited as a reason leading to the overwhelming overweight and obesity epidemic seen in the United States is portion size which is increased in the presence of larger plates and food containers. In a study of obese adults with type 2 diabetes, patients using a portion-controlling plate (with segments labeled for starch, protein, and vegetables) lost significantly more weight than their non-portion controlled counterparts, and 26% were able to be taken off of their diabetes-related medications.
To help Americans learn more about portion control, as well as see how portion sizes have changed in the last 10 to 20 years, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute provides a quick reference portion guide, as well as two “Portion Distortion” interactive quizzes where you can test your knowledge of nutrition.
The controversy over the proposed banning large-sized soft drinks in New York City has also sparked interest among consumers over whether all sweeteners are created equal. In particular, are the replacement sweeteners like Sweet’N Low or Spenda better than consuming real sugar? The New York Times recently addressed this issue, with the ultimate conclusion: “Eat and drink less sweet stuff.”
Dr. Cassandra Quave, CSHH Postdoctoral Fellow, has just completed a field study in NE Albania in collaboration with Dr. Andrea Pieroni, from the University of Gastronomic Sciences (Italy). The scope of the study was to investigate traditional health practices, including the use of wild plants for food and medicine, in several small Albanian and Gorani communities located in the Dinaric Alps near Mount Gjallica. Photos capturing the local agricultural, food, and health traditions can be accessed here on Dr. Quave’s website.
Much health-related advice that circulates through public (and particularly media) sources emphasizes the need to attain a certain quantity of specific nutrients each day. For example, Vitamin C, iron, sodium, and calcium all have dietary reference intakes (RDIs) that set a minimum daily threshold according to RDA guidelines.
But does consuming a specific quantity per day matter, and how does the source of that nutrient come into play? NPR’s Amy Standen investigated whether added fiber, particularly that added into foods traditionally not providing a significant source of fiber such as children’s cereal, truly has substantial health benefits.
The story can be accessed on NPR’s website in print or audio format.
On Wednesday, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Michelle Obama announced changes to government-subsidized school meals that are part of the Obama administration’s effort to reduce obesity among youth by promoting improved nutrition and exercise habits.
Key aspects of the new requirements include: doubling daily servings of fruits and vegetables, serving only whole grains, milk must be low fat, and salt and trans fat maximums.
For more information, you can read the new rules or the New York Times article which includes a more detailed summary and interviews with key government and food industry leaders.
Recent decades have witnessed an ever increasing rate of antibiotic-resistant infections across the globe. Many microbiologists attribute this to the usage of antibiotics among livestock, leading to the FDA to tighten restrictions for the administration of such drugs to animals. The restrictions apply to the antibiotic class cephalosporins, which are among the most commonly prescribed for children and those undergoing surgery, and used to treat other infectious illnesses such as strep throat, pneumoia, and urinary tract infections.
See the article “Citing Drug Resistance, U.S. Restricts More Antibiotics for Livestock” from the New York Times for more details.
It’s common for many of us to make a New Year’s resolution about diet and fitness… but how do we know which diet is the right one for us? Emory Heart and Vascular Center cardiologist Laurence Sperling, MD served on a U.S. News & World Report panel evaluating some of the USA’s most popular diets. Learn more about this report at the Emory Health Now blog.
Saturday, January 21st, Slow Food Atlanta and Emory University will host an official viewing party for TedxManhattan, which provides a series of talks with the theme “Changing the Way we Eat” from 10:30 am to 6 pm in the DUC. Refreshments are provided, and RSVPs are encouraged at julie [dot] shaffer [at] emory [dot] edu. Stay for a single talk or many – it will be a great opportunity to meet others in the Emory community interested in sustainable and healthful food options.
The TedxManhattan line up is available at their website. More information about the viewing party at Emory is available here.