Think outside the {Nature} Box

This is not really a product review. So let’s call it a “product awareness”.

You have probably heard of “Wine of the Month” club or “Cheese of the Month” club or, my favorite, JustFab.com (monthly shoes for $39.95). Well, NatureBox is the health freak cousin of all those clubs.

Untitled

NatureBox is a company that wants YOU to make healthier changes to your life. According to their website, the average American eats almost 25% of their calories from snacking! Snacks are one of the first places you should look when you are trying to cut back or lose a few pounds. Snacking is the number one cause of childhood obesity, which puts a child at great risk for becoming obese as an adult.

So, I know you are asking, “Danae, this is awesome. But it is probably really expensive.” Actually…..

For $19.95 per month (w/ FREE shipping), NatureBox will send you a box of 5 of their healthy snack items (15-20 total servings per box, about 5-6 servings per bag). If I wasn’t as broke as  I am, I would definitely join this club! You can also set up a NatureBox delivery schedule for a loved one as a gift!

BUT THAT’S NOT THE BEST PART!

Each box will even contain snack items relative to whatever month you receive the box in. For example, in February, they will send you snack items that will indulge you, with out you indulging in that box of chocolate from Valentine’s Day candy. Or in October, since it starts to get chilly then, NatureBox will send items that will boost your immunity and keep you energized. This really is a cool concept!!

BUT THAT’S NOT THE BEST PART!

NatureBox boasts that their snacks contain (or more don’t contain):

  • No high fructose corn syrup
  • No hydrogenated oils
  • No trans fats
  • No artificial flavors and colorings
  • No artificial sweeteners

Plus, every item in your NatureBox has been nutritionist approved, so you know you aren’t getting a mislabeled product.

BUT THAT’S NOT THE BEST PART!

For every NatureBox that is delivered to any doorstep, NatureBox, in partnership with Feeding America will donate one box to help feed a hungry child. About 14 million children in America go hungry every year. Not only are you helping yourself by choose better quality snacks, but you are helping other Americans eat.

So, don’t waste your calories on empty calories, like soda and Ho-Hos. *In cheesy infomercial voice* Order your NatureBox today!! *Thumbs up, Big smile*

XOXO, Danae

BUT THAT’S NOT THE BEST PART!

Countdown to Graduation: 9 days! (SINGLE DIGITS)

Healthy Eaters of Louisiana Unite!

Well, Louisiana might not be full of healthy eaters, but I would like to think the dietitians that attended the annual Louisiana Dietetic Association meeting are. This past Tuesday and Wednesday, I was in Lafayette for the LDA Conference “Responding to the Challenge“.

The Monday before the conference, Gwen, Nate and I drove to Alexandria and stayed with Derrick. We had great bonding time as we drove an hour and a half back and forth. During the conference, I really enjoyed meeting new people, hanging out with my fellow interns and seeing some old faces, like fellow student dietitians from Diabetes Camp. Since the conference was in Lafayette, the dietetic interns from University of Louisiana @ Lafayette were there, so it was fun to see how they have been since July.

On the first day, there were two seminars that I really enjoyed. The first one was Mary Lee Chin, MS, RD, a dietitian that talked about sustainability. The presenter talked about the impact that environmental concerns and food sourcing trends have on how the public purchase foods and what foods they purchase, especially with fresh produce and meat products, like beef and chicken. She told us the truth about claims and benefits of local organic foods versus modern and conventional foods and how they are each different in the way nutrition gets to the consumers and the sustainability of each. She also gave a comparison about foods from the local, regional and national realm and their impact on the economy and nutrient composition. She made sustainability sounds interesting, and she was a very good speaker.

In-between some of the talks, we made two trips to Starbucks within probably 3 hours. haha We needed some caffeine.

The second lady that I liked was Molly Kimball, RD, CSSD, a dietitian in the New Orleans area. She is a part of this awesome project where she has gone to local restaurants in NOLA and gotten their executive chefs to give her recipes of their dishes  where she then does the nutritional analysis of them. Then they work together to develop either healthier options of the of the dishes, or even develop a whole new “Eat Fit” menu listing. I think this would be a cool thing to bring to Chicago. I believe that while Chicago people love their deep dish pizza and steak, they are also fairly active and enjoy eating healthy. Many restaurants I think would want to be a part of something like this. We learned about the criteria she uses to designate healthy menu items and gave us some strategies are working with local restaurant owners. This is something I could see myself doing. Nutrition AND eating out — sounds like a dream job!

After the conclusion of the first day, the four of us went to this Mexican restaurant called El Pasado. The food was good, except at the time we ate dinner, there was very little patrons in the restaurant, yet our service was somewhat slow.

On the second day, there was really only one speaker I enjoyed. She was a dietitian, Heidi Greenwaldt, MS, RD, LD, CNSC, that worked at a large hospital in Minnesota that has their dietitians placing tubes for tube feedings. In most hospitals, the nurses are the ones that place the tubes. At this hospital, the dietitians place the majority of tubes, and they are doing them well. In 2012, there were 454 tubes placed, and 414 of those were placed by dietitians. They get trained and have all the proper certifications. At first, I was scared about the idea of RDs placing tubes, but I feel that it is good that we learn how to do this as a profession. Because we care SO much about feeding patients, I think it is great if we could just place feeding tubes ourselves. That way we wouldn’t have to bug the doctors or the nurses. I thought it was interesting.

On the last day of the conference there was a business meeting where recipients of all of the various scholarships were recognized. I actually won a scholarship that was given by the Louisiana Dietetic Association. I was one of the recipients for a $500 dollar Graduate Studies Scholarship. My roommate Kelly was the other winner! I even got to meet the President of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Ethan Bergman, PhD, RD, CD, FADA (who is from Seattle! Snaps for Ethan!) and the president of the Louisiana Dietetic Association, Bridgett Scott, MS, RD, LDN. And THEN, I won one of the raffle prizes, which was a Diabetes Education book. Granted, it was written in 2003, so it’s a little dated, but maybe it is a sign that I really am supposed to be a CDE (certified diabetes educator). It was exciting and I felt so important! I got a picture with the two of them, plus we also got a group picture with them at the end.

Here is the Crew at LDA (minus one..or two)

Here is the Crew at LDA (minus one..or two)

It was an exhausting couple of days, but it got me excited for this next chapter in my life. This is only the first half of my busy week. I will soon tell you about the second half.

XOXO, Danae

March might be over, but eating healthy shouldn’t!

Well, March is at an end, which means so is National Nutrition Month.

Erin over at Mojitos & Handbags said she wanted some recipes as well as some health tips. I’ve given out some recipes, so to wrap this month up, I am going to leave you with some general tips on eating healthy, easy ways to cut some calories and some guidelines on physical fitness.

The New "MyPyramid"

The New “MyPyramid”

  1. Eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables a day. They are low in fat and calories, but high in vitamins, minerals and fiber. According to the diagram above, at least half of your plate should be fruits and vegetables.
  2. Half of the grains you consume on a daily basis should be whole grains. This includes whole grain bread and pastas, brown rice and multi-grain cereal. Whole grain products have the whole part of the grain (bran, endosperm and germ), which means they are richer in fiber and nutrients.
  3. If you drink whole milk or 2% milk, try switching over to skim milk and low fat dairy products. By going from eight ounces of whole milk to eight ounces of skim milk, you can save 66 calories and 8 grams of fat.
  4. Choose lean forms of protein, like chicken, fish, deer and turkey. Beef is good to, but when purchasing it at the grocery store, purchase meat with ‘loan’ or ’round’ in the name. These are the leaner cuts of beef.
  5. Limit sugary drinks and sodas, like Coke, Sweet Tea and Kool-aid
  6. The more liquid a fat is, the healthier the fat is. For instance, extra virgin olive oil is better for you than Crisco.
  7. Studies show that 150 minutes of moderate physical exercise a week can improve an individuals risk of developing heart disease, osteoporosis and of course, helps fight obesity.
  8. The best fats are Omega-3 fatty acids and monounsaturated fats. Salmon, albacore tuna, walnuts, flax-seed and canola oil are great sources of omega-3’s and avocados, olive oil, peanut butter and nuts are good sources of monounsaturated fats.
  9. Baking, stewing, broiling or roasting are some of the healthier ways to cook food, like poultry, fish, potatoes and vegetables.
  10. Use reduced sodium or no-salt added products when cooking, or use other ways of seasoning food!
  11. Fat free, low fat and reduced fat are not the same thing. Reduced fat means that the product’s fat content is 25% of what the original version’s fat content is. Low fat means that the product can not have more than 3 g of fat per serving. Fat free means 0.5 g  or less of fat per serving. Make sure to read the label!

I hope you all have been enjoying the food and nutrition posts this month!! If you have any suggestions for future topics, feel free to leave them in the comments section!! I hope these posts have encouraged you to maybe make some small changes when it comes to your eating habits!!

XOXO, Danae

P.S. Happy Easter!

Drive-Thru Smarts

While I am not fast food’s biggest fan, I understand that sometimes you can’t help but answer the question “May I take your order?”

Murica

So, for those times when you need to squeeze through the drive-thru, here is what I have found to be some “healthy” meal ideas at various fast food chains.

Arby’s

Arby’s had some pretty high caloric food items. Like 90% of their sandwiches (and even salads) were anywhere between 400 and 800 calories. Now, this can be normal for a meal, but when you add curly fries and  a large coke, you have used almost half of your days worth of calories on one meal! So, here is the best option I could find.

3 piece prime-cut chicken tenders (350 calories, 17 g fat, 970 mg sodium*)

*I swear, everything on the Arby’s menu is above 1000 mg of sodium. But I guess that is what you get with processed foods.

Side Chopped Salad w/ Dijon Honey Mustard Dressing (use sparingly)* (171 calories, 21 g fat, 355 mg sodium)

*All the dressings where either high in calories and/or high in sodium. I went with one that was kind of in the middle.

Medium brewed unsweetened Iced Tea (5 calories, 0 g fat, o mg sodium)

Total: 526 calories, 38 g fat, 1325 mg sodium

Burger King

Whopper Jr. (No mayo) (260 calories, 10 g fat, 440 mg sodium)

Apple Slices (30 calories, 0 g fat, 0 sodium)

Small Strawberry Banana Smoothie (200 calories, 0 g fat, 20 mg sodium)

Total: 490 calories, 10 g fat, 460 mg sodium

Chick-fil-A

Chick-fil-A had a lot of high sodium items. Food items would be relatively low in calories, but high in sodium. Even some of their wraps had over 1,000 mg of sodium.

Chargrilled & Fruit Salad w/ reduced fat berry balsamic vinaigrette* (330 calories, 10 g fat, 770 mg sodium)

*use dressing sparingly. Dressing can make a healthy salad go unhealthy.

Medium Lemonade (230 calories, 0 g fat, 10 mg sodium)

Total: 560 calories, 10 g fat, 780 mg sodium

KFC

KFC actually had some healthy options despite being a place known for their fried chicken! Your fried options are going to be higher in sodium than the grilled options. Also, anything dipped or covered in gravy is going to be high in sodium as well.

Grilled Chicken Drumstick  (90 calories, 4 g fat, 290 mg sodium)

Corn on the Cob (70 calories, 0.5 g fat, 0 mg sodium)

Mashed Potatoes w/ gravy* (120 calories, 4 g fat, 530 mg sodium)

*Tip: Dip fork in gravy, then in mashed potatoes. You can save 30 calories and about 200 mg sodium

Small iced peach green tea (160 calories, 0 g fat, 50 mg sodium)

Total: 440 calories, 8.5 g fat, 870 mg sodium

McDonald’s

Seems like an oxymoron, but a healthy option CAN be found at McDonald’s. Just don’t super-size anything.

Hamburger with lettuce, tomato and ketchup (250 calories, 9 g fat, 480 mg sodium)

Fruit and yogurt parfait (150 calories, 2 g fat, 70 mg sodium)

Small sugar free iced french vanilla coffee (80 calories, 4.5 g fat, 65 mg sodium)

Total: 480 calories, 15.5 g fat, 615 mg sodium

Sonic Drive-In

Sonic’s food is awful if you have high blood pressure, heart disease or kidney disease. I think the only think that didn’t have sodium levels over 1000 mg was either the shakes or condiments. Fat levels were also really high! So, here is the best thing I could find…

Chicken strip sandwich (420 calories, 21 g fat, 810 mg sodium)

Medium low-cal diet cherry limeade (20 calories, 0 g fat, 15 mg sodium)

Total: 440 calories, 21 g fat, 825 mg sodium

Taco Bell

Word of advice: Stay away from the XXL stuffed burritos.

Chicken Chalupa Supreme (340 calories, 18 g fat, 530 mg sodium)

Cinnamon Twists (170 calories, 7 g fat, 200 mg sodium)

Small diet Pepsi (0 calories, o g fat, 50 mg sodium)

Total: 510 calories, 25 g fat, 780 mg sodium

Wendy’s

Half-size Spicy Chicken Caesar Salad w/ lemon garlic caesar dressing (no croutons) (360 calories, 24 g fat, 800 mg sodium)

Apple slices (40 calories, 0 g fat, o mg sodium)

Brewed Sweet Tea (110 calories, o g fat, 10 mg sodium)

Total: 510 calories, 24 g fat, 810 mg sodium

Hopefully this gives you some guidance on what to order at some typical fast food joints. Make good choices!

XOXO, Danae

Eat This. Not That.

This post is a classic “Eat This. Not That.” I got some of the information from  the Eat This, Not That book, but I also did some of my own investigation.

greasy-unhealthy-burger

Eat This: Steak N’ Shake Bacon Cheese Fries

360 calories, 6 g saturated fat (1.5 g trans fat), 710 mg sodium

Not That: Steak N’ Shake Large Chili Cheese Fries

1,170 calories, 22 g saturated fat (3.5 g trans fat), 2,150 mg sodium

Eat This: Outback Steakhouse’s Classic Cheesecake

334 calories, 16 g saturated fat, 23 g carbohydrates

Not That: Outback Steakhouses’s Chocolate Thunder from Down Under

1,554 calories, 53 g saturated fat, 133 g carbohydrates

Eat This: IHOP Simple & Fit Chicken Sandwich with fruit

500 calories, 3.5 g saturated fat, 840 mg sodium

Not That: IHOP Chicken and Spinach Salad

1,530 calories, 30 g saturated fat (2 g trans fat), 2,400 mg sodium

Eat This: Applebee’s Blackened Tilapia with vegetables

410 calories, 4.5 g saturated fat, 1,410 mg sodium

Not That: Applebee’s Fish N’ Chips

1,930 calories, 24 g saturated fat, 1.5 g trans fat, 3,180 mg sodium

Eat This: Outback Steakhouse’s Shrimp on the Barbie

319 calories, 5 g fat, 589 mg sodium

Not That: Outback Steakhouse’s Bloomin’ Onion (You knew this was coming…)

1,959 calories, 48 g saturated fat (4 g trans fat), 4,100 mg sodium (2 days worth of sodium)

Eat This: Ruby Tuesday’s Baked Potato with 1 Tbls. sour sream

275 calories, 4 g fat, 112 mg sodium

Not That: Ruby Tuesday’s Loaded Baked Potato

568 calories, 28 g fat, 536 mg sodium

Eat This: The Cheesecake Factory’s Skinny-licious Pasta

540 calories, 1 gram saturated fat, 660 mg sodium

Not That: The Cheesecake Factory’s Chicken Fettucini Alfredo

2,300 calories (a whole day’s worth!), 103  g  saturated fat, 1,297 mg sodium

Eat This: Red Robin Banzai Burger (without mayo or cheese)

617 calories, 21 g fat, 1,272 mg sodium

Not That: Red Robin Whisky River BBQ Burger

1,138 calories, 70 g fat,  1,450 mg sodium

Eat This: Starbucks Grande non-fat Sugar-Free Cinnamon Dolce Latte

260 calories, 6 g fat (4 g saturated), 38 g sugar

Not That: Starbucks Venti Peppermint White Chocolate Mocha with Whip

660 calories, 22 g fat (15 g saturated), 95 g sugars

Eat This: Steak Toscano

590 calories,  20 g fat (4.5 g saturated),  1460 mg sodium

Not That: Olive Garden’s  Grilled Sausage and Peppers Rustica

1320 calories,  80 g fat (30 g saturated),  2860 mg sodium

girl

Food isn’t always as healthy as you think. Especially the salads. You think you are doing good for yourself, but you could actually be eating as much as a burger with fries! Always think twice before your order.

XOXO, Danae

Spice Up Your Life!

My Childhood Idols

My Childhood Idols! (I used to pretend I was Posh)

Am I really going to compare nutrition to the Spice Girls?! Ya! You watch…..

Blogger Shadoza gave me this idea: “My suggestions for content would be to include something about how to spice up the blandness of low calorie meals without adding calories.” Sounds like a topic I can handle. Let’s talk about getting flavor without the added salt.

When I was doing my clinical rotations, I had so many patients say to me that they have to fry foods and add salt and/or Cajun seasoning (which is high in salt) to foods because either 1) they think healthy food tastes bad without it 2) they are so used to the taste of it on their foods, they have to use 3) they have no idea what else to use to add flavor or 4) all of the above.

I am going to give you some ideas on ways you can add flavor and spice to foods without adding so much salt you blow up like a puffer-fish. So let’s meet the true Spice Girls!

1. Rosemary SpiceRosemary Spice

Rosemary is a herb that is really easy to either grow it in an herb garden or in a pot in your kitchen. It is found commonly in Mediterranean dishes, but it can really go with a lot more. One of the most common dishes I see using rosemary is Rosemary Lemon Chicken. However, rosemary can be infused into olive oil that can be used on pasta or salads or even to dip some french bread in. You can place sprigs of rosemary inside chicken or on top of fish, like salmon, while it cooks. You can let it simmer with a pot of chicken noodle soup. You can also chop up the needles and put inside bread dough, then bake it off! You can either pull the needles off the stem, like if you are putting it into a dish, or you can leave it on the stem if its going in a stew/soup or if you are using it as a garnish.

Ginger Spice2. Ginger Spice

Hey, at least they got one right! Ginger can be found at most grocer’s where all the fresh produce is. It of course is mainly seen in teas and cookies as well as for medicinal purposes (every use fresh ginger or ginger ale to help your upset stomach?), but ginger can be used in a multitude of other places.  Putting fresh ginger into cooked carrots, broccoli or asparagus adds a little something extra. If you are doing a stiry fry at home, ginger is a great flavoring to add to the mix! You can even use ginger in a marinade for chicken, beef or pork!  To use this spice, make sure you peel off the brown skin with a sharp paring knife, then you can either cut and chop the ginger root into pieces or use a grater or a zester/microplane, depending on what form you need it in.

3. Bay Leaf SpiceBay Leaf spice

Not very many people use bay leaves and it could be because they don’t really know what to do with it. It is not really one of those herbs that are edible. Bay leaves are usually used for the flavor, but are discarded before serving. You may have heard from home cooks or Food network chefs about making a bouquet of herbs. This is when they take several different herbs and they either tie them together with string or put them in a little makeshift bag from cheesecloth. They can then put this bag in a pot of soup or casserole, let the flavors release into the dish and then easily be able to retrieve it when needed. Bay leaves can be used to give flavor to soups, casseroles, chilies and sauces. It can also be put into pots of water that will be used to boil shrimp, crawfish and crab. Marinades are another good use for bay leaves.

Garlic Spice4. Garlic Spice

Garlic is great to use with many savory dishes. It is an excellent addition to meats, fish, vegetables, soups, rice and bread. Just remember to use either fresh garlic or garlic powder. Forgo the garlic salt. While in just 1 Tablespoon of garlic salt there are 0 calories, there is 5,880 mg of sodium, which is over 2.5  times our daily allowance for salt (2300* mg is the standard, 1500 mg for the elderly, those with diabetes, hypertension and kidney disease). 1 Tablespoon of garlic powder has 28 calories, but only 2 mg of sodium. One word can make ALL the difference.

*2300 mg is about 1 teaspoon!

5. Lemon SpiceLemon Spice

Lemon juice is a good way to add an extra kick to chicken, fish and vegetables. It can give you flavor that tastes like salt, but WAY less sodium. I love squeezing fresh lemon onto my tilapia and broccoli  It adds a freshness to meals. It is a great thing to use, especially now that we are getting into the springtime. Lemon reminds my of spring, so it’s perfect! Want to add a little something extra? Take a zester to the outside of the lemon (you can also do this with oranges), and scrap off the yellow part of the the peel (you don’t want the white part…it’s bitter). You can then sprinkle some of the zest directly onto your chicken, vegetables & fish. It adds a little something extra, plus it’s really pretty.

Salt addict? One suggestion that I have given to patients, especially my cardiac and hypertensive ones, is to not even bring the salt shaker to the table. If it is at the table, you are going to use it. Don’t tempt yourself. The more you go without using it, your taste buds will get used to it. If you don’t want to quit cold turkey on your salt use, then slowly dial back. And ALWAYS make sure you taste your food before you start shaking salt on your dish. I’m sure nine times out of ten you will find the dish won’t even need it.

Now whenever you think of the Spice Girls, you are going to picture them as actual spices.

XOXO, Danae

P.S. I just had to post the video. Is it sad that after all these years, I still know ALL the lyrics and ALL the dance moves? Some things you just never forget…

Eat Right, Your Way, Every Way.

March is National Nutrition Month®, the one month dedicated to healthy eating and improving dietary habits headed up by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. This year’s theme, for its 40th Anniversary, is Eat Right, Your Way, Every Way!

Logo for 2013 National Nutrition Month

This theme focuses on individualized eating plans and are unique to your lifestyle, health concerns and taste buds! There is more to a healthy diet than just eating all the right foods. Its about eating right in your life and living a healthier lifestyle. You shouldn’t have to fit your eating habits into a “one-size-fits-all” diet plan. Changing dietary habits is a lifestyle change, so you want to make sure it works for you!

Over the course of this month, I plan on giving you eating tips, easy (yet healthy) meal options, maybe talk about some new food products and whatever else I decide to do. Let me know in the comments if there is anything you want to read or know more about! I hope you can learn something new during this month that could kick-start a change in your current eating habits.

XOXO, Danae

P.S. Changed my blog theme to “Bananas” in honor of NNM. What’s your favorite fruit?!

Tales from Russia

Despite what you might have thought this post was going to be about due to the title, I have not made a impromptu trip to Russia, but I might as well have.

Since Valentine’s Day, I had been working at one of the local state run hospitals doing a pre-management rotation. I had a some time to kill, so my internship director gave me some time to get some exposure to what I would be doing in my two full management rotations. The first two days I was there, it was just myself and my preceptor, but after than my roommate Kelly joined me due to some ongoing complications with another facility. Kelly did clinical stuff and I was management. Let me tell you, it was great having someone to work with, because our preceptor is a little much for just one person to handle. As of December, she has been the only dietitian working so she is very stressed. She is also like 2nd generation Russian. She is quite a character. The first day I was at this hospital, I thought I was going to kill myself. She is very high strung, gets easily stressed out, her mind goes a thousand places at once and she talks like 120% of the time. I thought  I talked a mile a minute….she overshoots me by a lot. I have heard so many stories about Russia, its crazy. I also got to meet her mom, who speaks maybe 20 words in english, so trying to have a conversation with her was interesting in itself. She did try and attempt to teach me how to read Russian. Emphasis on tried. I’ll just stick to reading  english and spanish.

However, by the end of my time, things were actually quite pleasurable. I was able to get a lot of things done for her while knocking of several of my competencies. I think we finally eased her mind. I revamped the patient menus, I conducted an in-service to the staff about proper serving sizes while on tray line, I developed a post-gastrectomy, vegetarian and neutropenic diet for the facility, I helped cook some food for the cafeteria and did some product research.  So, I would say the last two weeks were successful.

In addition to all the stuff I did at this hospital, I have also started the job hunt. I am in the process of updating my resume and cover letter and once I get the A-Okay from the career center (who is reviewing my resumed), I can start sending my stuff out to companies. I am getting very excited for this next stage, and I have found some great facilities that I would be honored to work at!! Keep your fingers crossed.

So now I have a few days off in-between quarters before I start my final quarter as a dietetic intern!! It is crazy how fast time is flying. And with all of the things happening between now and graduation, I know it will be over in the blink of an eye.

Happy last day of February. Thank goodness for short months!!

XOXO, Danae

P.S. March is National Nutrition Month!! I hope to have some fun facts or recipes for you over the next month, so keep checking back!!

Hot for Teacher

This past Monday I taught a 100-level class at LA Tech on eating disorders and fad diets. The class contained 21 students, all from different grade levels as well as different majors.

I had the opportunity to teach this class because of a competency requirement. I had to complete a community education requirement, so this counted for that.

My zebralicious number I wore to teach my class.

My outfit I wore to teach.

I think everybody gets a little nervous when they are about to get up and talk to a group of people. I mean..public speaking is the number one fear in most people. I got a little bit nervous before hand, but I actually felt comfortable doing this presentation. I think my only complaint (at least from me) was that I talk fast. It is not even because I get nervous..I just talk fast. People may say its because I am from the north, where everything is fast paced, but I know I talk fast normally. However, this time around, I did a pretty good job. I feel like when I talk to a group of people I don’t know, I don’t get nervous, but when I talk to those I do know, I get nervous. It is like I don’t want them to think less of me after giving my talk. You would think I would be more nervous in front of people I didn’t know, because I would want them to have a good first impression of me. I don’t know…..maybe I’m backwards. I did get “talk fast” written on my evaluation form though….guess I just can’t shake it.

The talk discussed fad diets, like the Macrobiotic Diet, the Baby Food Diet, the Cabbage Diet, the raw food diet, the master  cleanse and much more!! I also had an activity that went along with this subject matter. Check out Everyday Diets for a huge compiled list of diets.

Weight in the eyes of an anorexic

Weight in the eyes of an anorexic

I then led into eating disorders, who is affected by them and described different eating disorders, like anorexia, bulimia and binge-eating. Signs were also talked about for each disorder. An activity where they had to spot signs of an eating disorder in three scenarios. I left the students with basic healthy weight management tips and guidelines for weight loss. Overall, I thought the class was successful and I really enjoyed the added experience.

I haven’t written of teaching as a career path, but I think it would be cool to teach college in the future. The possibilities for my career are endless.

XOXO, Danae

3 more days until the end of the quarter, then “Spring Break!”

Does Someone Need a Hug??

Well, I have just finished my first week of floor supervision at St. Francis. I am so glad to be on my own. Don’t get me wrong, I like the dietitians that I work with, but I was ready to get into my own groove and not work with people over my shoulder. But they still have to sign of on my chart notes, but that I can handle. Just can’t wait until I get to be the one in charge, writing notes like no body’s business.

The hospital has been fairly busy, what with the huge flu/influenza A breakout. There are so many patients that are under precautions. I have to either where glove, a gown and gloves, a gown and face mask, or all of the above. In addition to the flu theme, this week’s theme is old people. You got it…old people.

I love old people. They have so much to tell and enjoy it when you stop and say hello. I had several patients that were over the age of 70 this week. Many of them were very friendly. I had this one old man who was so cute, I just wanted to hug him. He was just crackin’ jokes left and right. But I went from someone like him to this 97 year old woman who is essentially dying. She just lays in this bed all by herself. Her breathing is labored, she can barely talk and can’t hold her head up without shaking. It just breaks my heart. I know I can’t cure any of their diseases, but I try to be pleasant with them and make sure they have a great day.

I also had some other things going on during the week. I was asked to give a talk on healthy eating to the Pilot Club of the Twin Cities, a service oriented club that is run by women. They are most known for organizing the Taste of the Twin Cities and the Fleur de Lis, Miss Heart of Pilot and Miss Taste of the Twin Cities pageants. I talked to the 20 women about the importance of healthy eating and what to look for at the grocery store. I don’t mind public speaking, but it is when I can’t read the crowd that I get nervous. I even tried making a few jokes. They laughed, but they all looked so serious, I couldn’t tell if they liked me. But after my talk, they did give me a little gift, so it was much appreciated. It was good experience. After my talk, I stayed for the meeting. It was interesting to hear what they were planning, but when you get 20 southern women in a room, GIRLLLLL, they never stay on topic  everyone is talking over each other and they are loud. I am a woman, and I was starting to go crazy listening to everyone…

Last, on Saturday I drove over to Ruston to help with a grant project called Youth4Health, in hopes to correct childhood obesity and get families to eat more meals together. We had families come in to get weight, measured and nutritionally interviewed. I was in charge of measuring their height and then helped the younger kids fill out surveys, they were way to extensive for them in my option. Information covered included attitudes toward food, their self,  eating habits and environments and family medical history and family social issues. We also did a 24-hour recall with all the kids. I really loved working with the kids. I was amazed by how open the kids were with me. Some questions talked about how they felt their parents felt about them and how they feel about themselves and how others treat them.

So ready for this next week to be done and completed. All I have left is my final case study presentation and my final evaluation, then 3 day weekend (Thx MLK, Jr.)!! So ready.

XOXO, Danae

P.S. On Thursday, it will be 4 months until I am done with my internship! It will go by so fast!