Tag Archives: Nutrition

March National Nutrition Month

Happy March! And Happy National Nutrition Month!

Did you know the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics puts on a campaign to promote nutrition education and information annually in March? The campaign began in 1973 as National Nutrition Week, but due to popularity it became National Nutrition month in 1980. National Nutrition month promotes the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and its members, Registered Dietitians, to the public and media as the most credible sources of nutrition information.

Each year National Nutrition Month focuses on a theme to share the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits. National Nutrition Month’s 2018 theme is: Go Further with Food! The foods you choose to eat make a difference, whether it is choosing healthy snacks or reducing your portion sizes, in your overall health.

Go Further with Food Tips!

  • Eat Breakfast: start your morning with lean protein, whole grains, low-fat dairy, fruits and vegetables to jump start your day.
  • Make half your plate fruit and vegetables: they add color, flavor and texture to your plate, plus the added benefits of vitamins, minerals and fiber. Make 2 cups of fruit and 2 ½ cups of vegetables your daily goal.
  • Watch portion sizes: reducing your portion sizes and eating slowly will increase your satiety cues and allow you to not overeat. Follow the MyPlate guidelines when making your plate
  • Resolve to Reduce Waste
    • Plan meals and snacks based on the foods you have on hand.
    • Get creative with leftovers. Transform them into soups, salads or sandwiches.
    • Be mindful of portion sizes and avoid throwing out excess food.
    • Donate extra foods, that are still safe to eat, to a local food pantry or shelter.

What is Miami Dining doing for National Nutrition Month?

  1. When you are in the dining halls look out for nutrition facts posted near serving lines.
  2. Check out our Nutrition Walls in Garden Commons and Western Dining Commons for nutrition information and pamphlets.
  3. We will be focusing on our March Superfood: Kale! Find Kale at our dining locations and learn more about the benefits of this superfood and how to use it in many different ways!
  4. Follow us on social media! We will be posting nutrition tips, nutrition trivia questions, recipes, dining hall hacks, blog posts from our Registered Dietitians and Dietetic students, and more!
  5. Tag us in your #HealthySelfie Take a picture of your food or your food and you! Tag @MiamiUDining and use the #HealthySelfieMiami to be entered into our National Nutrition Month Raffle!

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Dishing Up Healthy Meals

A healthy and balanced meal is crucial no matter the time. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are equally important to focus on. Everything you eat and drink over time matters. Making good decisions each time you eat can will make you healthier now and in the future. Start with small changes that work for you and make healthy eating enjoyable.

Try these tips: 

  • Make 50% of your plate a combination of fruits and vegetables.
  • Vary your veggies
  • Make 50% of your grains whole grainslike brown rice and oats
  • Switch to low-fat or fat-free yogurt and dairy
  • Vary your protein choices (poultry, lean beef, fish)
  • Reduce your sodium, saturated fat, and added sugar intakes

Support from the USDA

MyPlate is an online nutritional resource curated by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Their main goal is to educate Americas on building a balanced meal, which means including nutrients from every food group. To better communicate the recommended serving sizes, the USDA developed a plate graphic divided into four approximate sections— 40% vegetables, 30% grains, 20% protein, 10% fruits and dairy.

The MyPlate website, ChooseMyPlate.gov, gives additional health tips such as making half of all grains whole grains, varying protein choices, and switching from whole milk to skim milk.

Choose Colorful Foods

We can all agree that taste, cost, and convenience are important factors when picking a meal or snack. There are endless food options that fulfill these three criteria, however, many of them are devoid of the vitamins and minerals our body needs. Crackers, cereals, chips, cookies, and fried foods all fit the bill. Another similarity? They’re all beige, brown and boring. A quick, visual tip for building a healthier meal is to vary the colors you consume. Natural foods, like fruits and vegetables, are often most colorful when they are at their ripest. This is also the point when they have developed the highest nutrient concentrate. So, the brighter the better!

Recommended Serving Sizes

These servings are based on a 2,000 calorie based diet and may vary depending on age, gender, and whether or not you want to gain, lose, or maintain weight.

  • Grains: 6–8 servings per day
  • Vegetables: 4–5 servings per day
  • Fruits: 4–5 servings per day
  • Fat-Free or Low-Fat Dairy Products: 2–3 servings per day
  • Lean Meats, Poultry, and Seafood: less than 6 oz. per day
  • Fats and Oils: 2–3 servings per day

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Staff Spotlight – Corinne Gilardi

Registered Dietitian Corinne Gilardi is a Miami alum who has recently joined the Dining Services staff. She helps students who have dietary restrictions (allergies, intolerances, preferences, etc.) determine what they can safely eat on campus.

Q: When you were at Miami, what was your major?

A: I was a double major in Dietetics and Health Promotion.

Q: How did you pick your major?

A: I chose my major randomly. My mom’s a nurse practitioner, so I’ve always grown up around the medical/health field. I knew I wanted to do something like that, but I quickly found out I cannot do “nurse things,” so I was trying to find alternate options. When I was applying for Miami, I didn’t want to apply undecided on the application. I just scrolled through the options and nutrition popped out. So I said, “Okay, I’ll click that for now and we’ll see how it goes.” Then my first class freshman year was Intro to Nutrition and I fell in love ever since.

Q: How did you get in to food services? What was your experience?
A: After I graduated from Miami in 2016, I had to do a dietetic internship. All registered dietitians have to do this internship before they can take their boards to be a registered dietitian. During my internship, I had to do rotations in clinical, community, and food service. When I did my food service rotation, I was in Cincinnati, Ohio, and I did my rotation with Cincinnati Public Schools and Norwood City Schools. Through that, I found that I really enjoyed working with students and educating and making sure that they were aware of the foods that they could eat.

Q: What would you say is the most exciting part of your job?

A: The most exciting part of my job is working with the students and them seeing that they’re able to eat a lot of the foods that we have on campus, being a nut friendly facility, the allergen station at Western, and the gluten friendly station at Maplestreet Commons. Some students who have a lot of allergies are very concerned about what they can and can’t eat. Once they meet with me, it’s fun to see them be excited about the options.

Q: How would you describe yourself personally? What are your hobbies?

A: I’m outgoing. I like to talk a lot and make new friends. I like to hang out with my sister; she’s my best friend. I like to cook, exercise and go try new restaurants. I’m a total foodie. My friends and family are important to me!

Q: What is your favorite dish to prepare?

A: I’m Italian, so I like to make my great-grandma’s spaghetti and meatballs. It’s just a good comfort food. Maybe not the most healthy… but that’s alright. Moderation! Moderation is my key to life.

Q: What is your favorite dish to eat?

A: It’s not a dish, but my favorite food is ice cream. Graeter’s Black Raspberry Chip all the way.

Q: What is your favorite TV show?

A: Grey’s Anatomy. I’ve become very addicted to it. I started watching it when I was a freshman in college and I think I’ve watched it all the way through two or three times.

Q: Cat or dog person?

A: Dog. I have two dogs actually: Cookie and Faith.

Q: What have you learned so far in your position?

A: I’ve learned that communication is key. You learn communication when you’re in school about making sure you email, but it’s not just email communication. It’s the face-to-face communication and making sure that everyone is on the same page. I think that’s the biggest thing I’ve learned throughout this process. Not only making sure that you’re saying the right things, but that you’re also telling it effectively to everyone who needs to know. 

Q: What is your advice for a student applying to work in Miami University Dining?

A: Just do it! When I went to school here, I worked in a dining hall for two years. I did that because I needed money as a college student, but I also did it because it gave me something else to do. I wasn’t just sitting in my room or sitting in an academic building doing homework all the time. It took up a couple hours out of my day. But just do it. And if you have questions, reach out. Ask the managers. Ask the student managers. Get involved!

____________

Schedule a meeting with the Corinne to get answers to your questions about eating healthy or eating on campus with food allergies. She can speak with you about many nutrition topics. Here are some of the most frequent topics students ask about:

  • Healthy Eating
  • Weight Loss
  • Special Diets, like food allergies, medical conditions, and lifestyle restrictions
  • Healthy Cooking
  • And more!

Email: gilardcr@miamioh.edu

Phone: 513-529-5552


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Caffeine Fixes ______.

It’s super early in the morning, your alarm goes off and you reluctantly drag yourself out of bed. The first thing you gravitate toward? Coffee. For a lot of us, coffee before anything is a must. Why is caffeine the thing that wakes us up and keeps us up? A lot of us believe that caffeine fixes various things – headaches, morning grogginess, energy, moods, etc. Let’s dive in a little on what effects caffeine has on the body, training performance, and which drinks other than coffee contain caffeine that give you the same kick?

What is caffeine?

Caffeine is a phytochemical (a big word), which is seen largely inside the beans of the coffee plant and in the leaves of the tea among some other plants. Caffeine is made in the leaves through photosynthesis. Caffeine holds a generally bitter taste, which is often disguised in drinks by a lot of sugar or sweetener.

How does caffeine work?

The effects of caffeine can vary. In particular, the heart and nervous system are stimulated by the sharp effect of caffeine. Not in a good mood? Caffeine is a mood booster with a great impact on the mood and spirit. It improves awareness, concentration and prevents drowsiness. To an extent, it also grows your memory span. As caffeine has such positive results on your mental performance it works against every energy slump.

Caffeine doesn’t just present mental benefits, it’s also pretty helpful for your body. Drinking caffeine in big doses (but not too big) increases the heartbeat, the heart beats faster and stronger resulting in increased heart rate and blood pressure. This can lead us to feel fit and energetic.

Does caffeine impact athletic performance?

Caffeine also has advantages in sports. It can improve attention and concentration, for example, your reactions. Fatigue and tiredness are also pushed back by the results of caffeine. It gets circulation going and makes you more alert. It can boost your performance and give you the needed energy kick at the critical point of your workout. Read more here about caffeine and athletic performance.

The right amount?

If you consume caffeine too frequently, you won’t feel the positive effects. Why? Because your body gets used to the caffeine dose. When you consume caffeine in high doses it can also cause insomnia, nervousness, and stomach issues. Also, your fine motor skills can worsen with too much caffeine – not the best news. Even a single cup of coffee can lead a person to encounter an increase in their heart rate, while someone else might not feel anything. The effect of the body may change and is varied from person to person. One major point to learn is that caffeine should be consumed in moderation. Too much caffeine of any kind can become addicting and very difficult to withdraw from. If you think that caffeine is the solution to a less groggy morning, you might be right, but a healthier alternative might be a good nights rest. 


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February Superfood: Beets

Beets are February’s superfood of the month! What is a superfood you may ask? A superfood is defined as a nutrient-rich food considered to be especially beneficial for health and well-being. This nutrient-dense root beatable is the perfect source for vitamins and health benefits. Their rich pop of color can brighten up your plate and your day with its deep red and purple zing. Beets are young, firm little red ball-shaped plants that are known to have a unique earthy sweetness. This earthy sweetness can deliciously be paired with shape flavors like goat cheese or lemon.

You Can’t Beet the Health Benefits

  • Lowering blood pressure
  • Boost stamina
  • Fight inflammation
  • Supports detoxification
  • Rich in folate, which reduces the risk of birth defects
  • Anti-cenver properties
  • Rich in vitamin C, fiber, iron, and essential minerals such as manganese and potassium
  • Supports brain and bone health

How to Eat Beets

Did you know that the leaf on the beat root is edible? The leaf is part of the healthiest part of the plant. Beet greens actually have more iron than spinach! Whether thinly sliced or grated, beets are perfect to eat fully raw or cooked. Before eating the beet root, be sure to peel its paper-thin skin off, which can be done when it’s raw. Beets are high in carbohydrates and have a high sugar content, so it is important to eat them in moderation.

Cooking Beets

Beets are phytonutrient, and high temperatures may diminish the many nutrients that beets contain. Be are to cook beets lightly–steaming vegetables is one of the top ways to cook vegetables to retain nutrients. When roasting beets, it is recommended to roast it with the peel and then rub the peel off afterwards.


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Is Chocolate Healthy?

We bet you’ve heard of chocolate being healthy for you, right? Is there such a thing? Chocolate’s reputation is actually changing. There are a lot of studies that suggest it can be a healthy choice for your heart (in moderation). There are great health components found in cocoa like flavanols, theobromine, and antioxidants. To break it down, flavanols are found in cocoa and chocolate. Research shows that flavanols have influences on blood flow to the brain and heart. Theobromine is another heart-healthy compound found in chocolate and has been used to treat high blood pressure.

Prevent Heart Disease?

In a study of 470 elderly men, cocoa was found to reduce the risk of cardiovascular death by a whopping 50% over a 15 year period – pretty crazy! Flavanols are the main type of flavonoid found in dark chocolate. According to Cleveland Clinic, research has shown that flavanols have a very positive effect on heart health by helping lower blood pressure and improving blood flow to the heart as well as the brain. Dark chocolates flavanols can also help make blood platelets less sticky and able to clot, which reduces the risk of blood clots and stroke.

Antioxidants in chocolate?

Antioxidants are known to support the body’s cells to resist damage. Antioxidants are actually located in a lot of foods! These include berries, nuts, grains, some meats, poultry, fish, fruits, and vegetables, and CHOCOLATE.

Are all chocolates healthy?

Cocoa naturally has a very strong taste, which comes from the flavanols.  When cocoa is placed into your favorite chocolate products, it goes through multiple steps to lessen this taste. The more chocolate is processed, the more flavanols are lost.  That’s why picking dark chocolate rather than milk chocolate is best.

How much is right for me?

There is currently no set healthy serving size for chocolate. However, you don’t need to feel guilty anymore if you enjoy a small piece of dark chocolate every now and then. If you want to add chocolate to your diet, do so in moderation.


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Eat Your Breakfast!

How important is breakfast?

Many studies have linked eating breakfast to good health, including better memory and concentration, lower levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol, and lower chances of getting diabetes, heart disease, and being overweight. Without breakfast, your body could be without fuel for up to 16 hours from dinner to the next day’s lunch. Your body needs a consistent energy intake to maintain proper function and breakfast is also a great way to kick start your day.

Make your breakfast full of protein! This will help keep you full until lunchtime and prevent overeating due to excessive hunger.

Most people are busy bees and give the excuse of “I don’t have time to eat breakfast.” Even if a big breakfast isn’t possible, a quick bite can be beneficial. If you’re in need of some ideas for a quick, on the go breakfast, check out some ideas below, lots of the ideas can be found at to-go or market locations on campus!

We also have breakfast combos on campus that are an equivalent to a swipe!Breakfast swipe_TW

Easy on-the-go breakfast ideas:

  • Greek yogurt (found on campus)
  • Cereal bars
  • Peanut butter or avocado toast
  • Cup of fruit (found on campus)
  • Premier protein shake or Core Power pre made protein drinks (found on campus)
  • Banana or zucchini bread
  • Oatmeal or cereal cups (found on campus)

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Count on Dividends

Even if you haven’t been in the Farmer School of Business, surely you’ve heard of the iconic Dividends. And inside that iconic Dividends, everyone knows of the salad bar on the left-hand side. You might as well run over there now because that is home of a Traders’ Greens salad bar station.

Traders’ Greens offers a wide variety of options to place in a to-go salad bowl, which is a staple for Miami’s on-campus dining options. From tangy-flavored creations to loaded bowls of meat with a little amount of salad, you have countless possibilities and combinations. Just to start out, this salad bar has over 50 toppings to choose from! Just think about it. You could go there every day for months on end and get an entirely different salad combination. Talk about decisions.

Do you want fruit in your salad? Done. Do you want chicken, bacon, and ranch in your salad? Done. Do you want to feel like you can make it however you want it? Done. You can mix and match the type of lettuce you prefer, add toppings on toppings, then drizzle or douse your salad in whichever dressing you fancy. You might indulge in some salad bowls, or you might want to be a healthy salad eater for a day. Either way, it has you covered.

Now we know there are days where you are rushing to get to a meeting or class and you have NO time to stop and make your own salad. At every market and numerous dining locations there are convenient pre-made salads you can grab to-go with salad dressing choices galore on the side! Try not to get overwhelmed by the options available. Just grab it, swipe it, and you’re out of there.

Notice throughout this entire article the idea of variety and the endless possibilities are reassured. That is because Miami strives for excellence and perfection when it comes to the variety of options and choices in dining. We hope by the end of this article you are in line for a sensational salad bowl at Traders’ Greens or zooming through a market for a pre-made salad!


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