Wishing all my fellow RDs a very nutritious day!
Wishing all my fellow RDs a very nutritious day!
Mark your calendar now for my FREE talk coming up this month. I'll be at Wild by Nature in Hampton Bays on Tuesday, March 27 from 7-8 pm talking diet spring cleaning and giving my seven best tips for cleaning up your diet and jump starting your weight loss.
I hope to see you there!
My family, friends and clients all know there aren't many foods that are simply off limits to me. Sure, lots of foods should be an occasional indulgence and don't have a place in the everyday diet, but there aren't a lot of foods I never ever eat.
That said, there are a few.
I was recently asked to share what I'd never eat with HealthiNation. Can you guess what my response was?
This past week I was featured in Women's Health talking about foods you should quit buying. My number one pick for overrated "health" foods that aren't actually healthy?
I get it. Losing weight, cutting processed foods from your diet, or reaching any health goal is tough. And even though January is hyped up to be the month of "resolutions," it can often feel tougher. There's pressure to drop the pounds, the weather is cold and snowy, and it's dark by 5 pm. It's no wonder 80% of New Year's resolutions fail by February.
I want to help you reach and maintain your health and wellness goals.
To support you in getting your health back on track, I'm offering New Year's specials for the next month. Email or call me now to learn more and book your first appointment!
Just a reminder that I am hosting a FREE nutrition and goal setting workshop this Saturday, January 13 at LOFT35 (in the Lululemon) in East Hampton. I'll be sharing the 8 essential steps for meeting your goals in the New Year and there will be plenty of time for nutrition Q&A.
The workshop starts at 1:30 PM and should last about one hour. Check it out on the LOFT35 site!
Hope to see you this Saturday!
Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a fun celebration last night to kick off 2018.
I am hosting two FREE events this month to help the Hamptons community get a jump start on goals for 2018.
On Wednesday, January 3 I will be leading a class on goal setting at Wild By Nature in Hampton Bays from 7-8 pm. There will be plenty of time for nutrition Q&A after my talk! More details are available on their website.
Then on Saturday, January 13 I am hosting a goal setting workshop at LOFT35 (in the Lululemon store) in East Hampton at 1:30 pm. We'll be discussing the simple steps you can take today that will help you reach any new year goal, followed by a nutrition Q&A.
I hope to see you at one of these events, or, as always, contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org to book an individual consultation.
Yesterday was the Nutritious Life team holiday lunch at ilili in NYC. It was so nice to see the team (and the food was SUPER delicious!)
We started the meal with fresh pita bread, hummus, labne (strained yogurt with olive oil and spices), dandelion greens with pine nuts, and INSANE Brussels sprouts with grapes, fig jam, walnuts and mint yogurt. For my main, I had seared diver scallops with pomegranate and eggplant (check them out below!)
Enjoy the next week of holiday fun, remember to take time to focus on yourself, and don't beat yourself up if you fall off track with your goals--you can always hop back on.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all!
'Tis the season of holiday parties. The next few weeks might seem like a blur of celebrations and feasts, but that doesn't mean you need to sideline your healthy living goals. No matter what you're aiming for--to lose or maintain weight, to exercise daily, to lower levels of stress--you can make progress towards your goals with one simple action: Be mindful of your decisions.
Let's face it, the holidays can feel overwhelming. Between decorating, buying gifts, planning menus and attending parties, to-do lists can pile up pretty fast, leaving little time for self-care.
And when it comes to food, the holiday season can feel like one big never-ending buffet. How can you possibly stay on track when there's an open bar and cookie exchange on every corner?
Yes, losing weight or reaching any health goal is a journey, and it's not going to happen over night, especially during the holiday season. But you can stay on track and feel in control if you stay mindful.
When it comes to food, take a step back before you fill your plate. Do you really want that cookie (or piece of cheese, or scoop of stuffing, or whatever it is in front of you)? How will you feel ten minutes after eating it? Later that night? The next day? Take time to stop and think about your choices, and if you do decide to take a bite, savor the taste and texture (rather than scarfing it down).
As for self-care, take time for yourself every day, whether it's mediation, a yoga class, a run outside, or even just a leisurely cup of coffee. It's okay to slow down. Stay in tune with your body and your emotions; this will help keep stress at bay, and ultimately make it easier to reach your goals.
Remember, the holidays are a time for family, friends, and giving, and it's okay if you aren't perfect. Staying mindful is the first step towards healthier living, and if you are in tune with how you body feels and the choices that you make, it will become easier to reach your goals.
Wishing everyone a healthy and happy holiday season!
It's that time of year again: Cue the articles and blog posts about staying healthy on Thanksgiving. I'm a Registered Dietitian and even I have to let out a sigh. I'm sure by now you know that pecan pie has more calories than pumpkin, that white meat is leaner than dark, and that sweet potatoes are a better choice than traditional mashed (unless of course they're buried under marshmallows). These tips aren't news. And on a day meant for family, friends and, well, giving thanks, should calorie-counting and portion-measuring really be at the front of your mind?
My philosophy for staying healthy on Thanksgiving is slightly different and easy for just about anyone to follow. Follow these four tips and have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Yes, I want you to eat what you want. Thanksgiving is one day and most dishes on the table won't be served again for another 364 days. Love green bean casserole? It's heavy as hell, but feel free to add a scoop to your plate. Live for grandma's stuffing? It's called stuffing for a reason, but go ahead and make some room. Thanksgiving foods represent tradition, nostalgia, family and love. Any other meal you'll be choosing lightly sauteed green beans and fiber-packed whole grains, but this is Thanksgiving. If you want the marshmallow-covered casserole, be my guest, knowing marshmallows have no place on the table any other day of the year.
Eat what you want, but don't eat just anything. If you don't truly love it, it doesn't belong on your plate. I skip the mashed potatoes. I don't dislike them, but I don't go crazy for them. Be a little picky, focus on what you love, and make sure every bite is special.
There's no need to break out the measuring cups or kitchen scale, but come on, you know when you're full. Take reasonable portions of food and don't feel pressured to finish everything on your plate. Eat slowly, savor each bite, make conversation and take a moment to realize when you're done. Dinner shouldn't be uncomfortable and require elastic pants. Use the same mentality for alcohol. You know when you've had enough.
Yes, everyone loves leftovers, but the day after Thanksgiving is the day after Thanksgiving and time to get back on track with your healthy eating plan (okay fine, after one killer leftovers sandwich). Stuffing shouldn't be on the menu for the next seven days. Turn your focus back to fresh vegetables, whole fruits, lean proteins and whole grains. There's always next year for your Thanksgiving favorites.
Have a happy and healthy Thanksgiving dinner!
Yesterday, the American Heart Association announced new guidelines that set a lower threshold for diagnosing high blood pressure. High blood pressure will now be defined as anything above 130 over 80.
Here's the full breakdown:
—Normal: Under 120 over 80
—Elevated: 120-129 over less than 80
—Stage 1: 130-139 over 80-89
—Stage 2: 140 over 90
There's plenty of controversy surrounding this change. People are claiming AHA made these changes just so doctors can sell more blood pressure-lowering drugs.
In reality, these changes give people a more realistic and honest idea for who might be at risk of heart disease, stroke, and other heart-related problems.
And it's not just drugs that can help with lowering blood pressure. More importantly, it's lifestyle factors that will bring long term success. Losing weight, eating less sodium and sugar, eating more fruits and vegetables, making healthier lifestyle and dietary choices, exercising and moving more, not smoking, and lowering stress levels can all help reduce blood pressure and lower risk of disease.
In my practice I help clients focus on long-term solutions for managing health. If your blood pressure falls above normal levels and you're ready to make a lifestyle change, contact me now for a consultation and we will design a lifestyle plan that will help get your health back on track.
I just got back from an INCREDIBLE trip to California for the Nutritious Life Masterclass in Santa Monica. I am so proud of our small team and super impressed by all of the amazing women who attended.
Masterclass was a two-day event bringing together some of the leading experts in the wellness industry to discuss nutrition science and trends, eat delicious (and healthy!) food, work out with top trainers, and learn business and counseling skills.
While all of our speakers were informative and inspiring, some personal highlights were:
I am so proud to be a part of the Nutritious Life team and am already counting down to Masterclass 2018!
This past weekend I attended Expo East in Baltimore on behalf of Nounós Creamery, a Long Island-based authentic Greek yogurt company that I represent. If you haven't had a chance to try Nounós yet, hopefully you will soon. The company started in Southampton and has been around for about four years, but just started expanding outside of New York State in the last year. You can now find the yogurt in the northeast, Texas, Chicago and Southern California. For those in the Hamptons, it's in Citarella, Schmidt's and several local farm stands.
Nounós is unlike most Greek yogurts on the shelf because they use the traditional method to strain the yogurt. Big yogurt companies rely on mechanical straining. At Nounós, they simply use cheesecloth bags and let gravity do all the work. The entire yogurt-making process takes about three days and you can taste the slow-food difference. It is creamier, tangier and fresher-tasting than any yogurt in the store. In fact, Nounós is the only company with FDA approval to sell yogurt made with this method outside of New York.
Expo East attendees got a chance to sample all of the unique Nounós flavors, including classic plain, this past weekend. We also debuted three new whole milk yogurts. In addition to the fresh and delicious taste, attendees were blown away by the innovative packaging for the yogurt. The original low-fat flavors come in little glass jars, and the new whole milk flavors are packaged in ceramic. Both materials are better for the yogurt and the environment compared with plastic.
Check out our booth and be on the lookout for Nounós Greek yogurt!
I recently did an interview with Hamptons Purist on wellness tonics. The article appeared in the August issue. Enjoy!
This past Friday I had the pleasure of seeing Ina Garten speak at the Bridgehampton Library in their Fridays at 5 series. I had been looking forward to this for weeks and the event lived up to the hype.
Gates opened at 4:30 pm and we headed onto the back lawn to grab a seat. Before Ina came out at 5 pm, there was a lovely reception with local wine and snacks. The spread was fabulous! I had salmon on toast, some fresh veggies, a piece of brie cheese, and a small salmon quiche. I helped myself to some wine as well!
Ina came out right on time and was interviewed by her friend (and movie director) Rob Marshall. I have always been a big fan of Ina and her recipes, and my respect for her only grew after hearing her speak. Ina emphasized that truly great cooking is very simple; it just requires the best ingredients. I love her emphasis on fresh, wholesome foods and find that even her most decadent recipes can fit into a balanced diet.
Ina had no culinary training, but rather a passion for food and cooking. Her main message was to do what makes you happy every day. I can get behind that!
Everyone who knows me well knows that I love breakfast. Yes, I believe that it is important to eat a morning meal to get your metabolism up and running for the day. Yes, I love most breakfast foods, like Greek yogurt, fruit, whole grain toast, eggs and smoked salmon. But really, it's the ritual of breakfast that I love the most.
I'm sort of a morning person, but I will fully admit I'm not a people person in the morning. I relish the hour or so I get to myself before the rest of the house gets up (the dog included). Breakfast is me time. A time to wake up. A time to relax and simply enjoy before the day really gets started. Some people have meditation; I have breakfast.
Nourishing foods, freshly ground Hamptons Coffee and a New York Times crossword: it might sound simple, even silly, but I have so much value for my morning routine. We live in such a fast-paced world, so many people rush through the day without taking some time for themselves. It doesn't have to be breakfast, but I encourage you to find a few moments when you too can simply enjoy. Take a 15-minute afternoon stroll, get away from your desk during lunch, or head to bed a few minutes earlier and read a new book. Find time for yourself no matter how stressful the day. You will learn to look forward and cherish the few moments for you.
Salads are my go-to lunch. They pack a ton of vegetables into one dish, they're super filling, and they can be eaten at home or on-the-go. There are so many possibilities for delicious salad combinations, but I generally stick to this formula when crafting my lunch:
Step 1: Pick a Green Base
Generally, the darker the green the healthier it is, but you don't always need to opt for spinach or kale. Romaine works well if you’re in a crunchy and crisp mood and there may be some days when you're just craving iceberg---and that's fine. You can also use chopped salad mixes that incorporate cabbage, carrots, Brussels sprouts and more.
Step 2: Add More Color
Pile on the color: tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, celery, carrots, radishes, mushrooms, summer squash...seriously anything goes. I love to add leftover roasted vegetables like sweet potatoes, broccoli, Brussels sprouts or cauliflower from dinner the night before. Go to town here.
Step 3: Choose a Protein
You need a protein to help keep you satisfied. Leftover grilled chicken or steak, canned tuna or salmon, or hard boiled eggs are go-to options if you like a little meat. For vegetarian protein sources, try quinoa, beans, hummus, seeds, chickpeas or lentils. Remember, a serving of animal protein is about the size of a smart phone; for vegetarian sources the standard is half a cup.
Step 4: Dress it Up with Healthy Fat
Adding some healthy fat to your salad will bring flavor, promote satiety, and aid in absorption of all the nutrients in those vegetables. Olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice or splash of vinegar is the simplest way to go. If you buy a dressing, pick one with simple ingredients, preferably organic, and stick to just about one tablespoon of dressing. You can also add avocado, cheese like feta, or nuts. If you add a fat source go easy on the dressing.
One of the reasons I love the Fourth of July is because it means my birthday is four days away. Birthdays are not as exciting as they used to be, but it's still a fun day where you can celebrate you...so I celebrated me!
We started the day with bagels from Citarella. I love the New Yorker sandwich with smoked salmon and tomatoes. I don't get it that often so it is such a special treat. The weather was beautiful so I spent the whole day at the beach.
In the evening we celebrated with wine and cheese at Wolffer Estate Vineyard. I am a wine club member and we go there a lot, but it still always feels special. After Wolffer we had a fabulous dinner at my favorite restaurant in Southampton, Red Bar. We are treated like family there and the food is fantastic. We always start with the mussels--they are seriously the best! I had grilled fish with vegetables and wild rice as my main, and then we had the sorbet for dessert. Delish!
Indulging is a part of healthy living, and there's never a reason to feel deprived on your birthday. On special occasions, eat the foods that will make you feel good! My only rule is that you enjoy every bite. And remember, your birthday is just one day. Enjoy a few indulgences and get back on track the next day.
Fourth of July is a huge celebration in the Hamptons and usually turns into a super long weekend. It finally feels like summer weather out here and most everyone (including me) took advantage of the sunshine and hit the beach.
On the Fourth of July I love a traditional American meal. We went all out with cheeseburgers, corn on the cob, cole slaw and cans of beer. My thought with an indulgent meal like this is that everything must be quality.
I don't eat red meat, especially burgers, very often, but when I do I make sure it is high quality. We made our burgers using organic grass fed ground beef purchased at Citarella. Organic ensures there are no added antibiotics or hormones and grass fed means the beef has a healthier fatty acid profile. I like that this beef is available at the butcher counter so I only purchased what I needed for our small celebration. In addition to quality meat, you need a quality bun. Citarella has the most amazing brioche buns at the bakery that are perfect for burgers. They are a little pricey but are totally worth it. Plus you don't get stuck with an entire package of buns you don't want. We topped the burgers with Alpine Swiss cheese, beefsteak tomato, and butter lettuce.
I should have made the cole slaw, but I bought it prepared at The Golden Pear. We cooked the corn on the grill and topped it with grass fed butter and flaky sea salt. To drink we had Montauk Summer Ale straight out of the can.
I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday!
Jenn LaVardera, owner of Hamptons RD, is a registered dietitian, nutrition expert and wellness specialist in Southampton New York.
Jenn LaVardera LLC. All dietary, nutrition and wellness information and advice presented on this site is not intended as a substitute for individualized nutrition or medical care. Banner artwork provided by Brooke Lark on Unsplash.