Bonnie Modugno, MS, RD
Nov 3, 2010
Just yesterday the San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted to pass a toy ban for meals that they deem unhealthy. This law presumptuously determines that no toy may be given if a meal contains more than:
October 28, 2010
Organic food is the fastest growing segment of the food market. I am both saddened and outraged that there are people who betray the consumer’s trust in this noble effort to bring farmers and consumers together in a synergistic and profitable way.
We have been Kaiser patients for decades. For the most part I appreciate the health care provided and the care of the physicians and other providers. But nutrition education for patients with high cholesterol is so dated it borders on being more harmful than helpful.
Both Frank and I are tested regularly and show elevated total and LDL cholesterol. Because our HDL-C levels are high and triglyceride levels are low, my guess is that the LDL-C is a harmless light and fluffy type. Not the small dense LDL-Cholesterol associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). On Kaiser’s own risk calculator, I have less than a 1% chance of CVD in the next 10 years.
In a commentary published in the Journal of the American Medical Association on Oct 6, 2010. (JAMA. 2010;304(13):1487-1488. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.1436), Drs. Kelly Brownell and Jeffrey Koplan charge the food and beverage industry with questionable practices that significantly contribute to the incidence of an over weight and obese population. There is no question that food companies are complicit in the food issues of the day. But the problems are bigger than what the food and beverage industry is stocking on supermarket shelves.
Certainly, food and beverage companies have to step up and do what they can. I am encouraged by decreasing trans fat content in food, and current efforts to reduce sodium, sugar, and especially high fructose corn sweetener. But reformulating food is only one piece of the puzzle. Harder questions need to be answered regarding our food supply.
October 3, 2010
I cringed when I saw the headline. The American Council on Exercise has partnered with the NuVal Nutritional Scoring System. The relationship between the fitness industry and nutrition has been messy for decades. The track record is dismal between the selling of suspect sport nutritional products and the offering of nutrition advice by people who only think they know.
A recent editorial in the LA Times (I readily found in the Olympian) chastised the FDA for foot dragging on a fabulous new food. Henry Miller, a physician and molecular biologist, champions the FDA approval of genetically modified Salmon. This salmon grows more than twice as fast since the gene that promotes growth during the warmer months is fixed so it never turns off.
I can’t disagree more with the author. There is reason to be cautious, and I am not at all convinced that this food is safe in the fullest sense. While Dr. Miller is appalled “regulators chose the most risk-averse and burdensome approach”, there is reason to be cautious. FDA does not have such a good track record when it comes to approving novel food ingredients. Partially hydrogenated oils (trans fat), high fructose corn syrup, and artificial sweeteners are the first debacles that come to mind.
A recent report in the Sept 10 Morbidity and Mortality Report from the CDC details how most Americans eat far fewer fruits and vegetables than recommended. Only 25% of Americans consume 3 servings of vegetables a day; only 1/3 of Americans eat 2 or more servings of fruit.
My son went to school with three servings of fruits and vegetables just for lunch. Why are so many people not eating their share? The authors suggest it is about access, availability and affordability. I would add two more: taste and quality.
I actually made a reservation for dinner last night. Our Anniversary. It has been months, many months since I made the effort. I don’t know when I will do it again. The meal at Fraiche in Santa Monica was a big disappointment. I should have paid more attention to that posting on Chow Hound.
Yesterday afternoon I scanned Chow Hound at the last minute for inspiration. I was frustrated that most of the recommendations were in West Hollywood, downtown or environs that weren’t going to work. My husband wanted to drive home from downtown and go together. I knew I was not going to get him in the car again for any significant distance. I opted for a restaurant we had been to a couple of years ago.
WHEN ONE FRAICHE IS NOT THE SAME AS THE OTHER FRAICHE
August 25, 2010
I did a double take passing by my local Whole Foods Market today. It is a convenient one block walk from my office and I am thrilled to have such fabulous food so conveniently located. Granted, I passed right by today, carting $80 worth of farm fresh produce from the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market. I like it all.
I read the LA Times headline, “A Short Period of Gluttony Can Have a Lasting Effect” and sighed. I have come to suspect that over eating, and binge eating in particular, impacts metabolism more than just eating more calories. Something far more significant occurs when we overeat.
Now research from Sweden underscores an impact on body fat even two years after a 4 week “binge”. During the study 18 subjects consumed an average of 70% more calories than usual. (The experimental subjects were instructed to double their food intake, but were only able to increase it by 70%.) The researchers note that the calories came from two meals a day bought at fast food establishments, or from other sources of “high protein and saturated fat foods.”