Subject: Dietitians of the Week

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Dietitians of the Week
Check our Facebook page every weekday for our RD of the Day, as we put a much-deserved spotlight on a dietitian who's either making headlines or writing them and delivering their expertise through the media. Here are this week's featured RDs.

Laura Walker, MS, RD  
Dietitians know that the glycoalkaloids in nightshades can cause inflammation in some people, exacerbating digestive and autoimmune problems.

Monday's RD of the Day provides the expert dietetic advice in Shape magazine's online post from Well + Good, "The Truth About Nightshades—and Whether You Should Avoid Them".

The article explains what nightshades are and Laura Walker, MS, RD, says that the built-in bug repellent in the glycoalkaloids are great for nightshades, but not so much for the people who like to eat them.

"If you have inflammatory bowel syndrome, are gluten intolerant, have rheumatoid arthritis, or any form of leaky gut, I recommend you be very careful with this food group," Laura says. The bug-repelling qualities of the fruits and veggies can attack an already weakened cell membrane, she adds.

For those ready to cut our nightshades altogether, Laura suggests they prepare for a bit of trial-and-error. "Some people can cut out tomatoes and potatoes, but still tolerate peppers, because they have lower levels of glycoalkaloids," Walker says. Also, she adds, nightshades have a cumulative effect, meaning there may not be one particular variety that affects an individual.

"I often recommend people start an elimination diet where they start by eating no nightshades, but then slowly add them back in one at a time," Walker says. "That way, you can see which ones your body tolerates."

For this important bit of truth that a dietitian is uniquely qualified to explain, Laura was Monday's RD of the Day.

Read the article: The Truth About Nightshades—and Whether You Should Avoid Them

Bonnie Brost, RD Twitter
Our Tuesday RD of the Day cites an interesting statistic at the start of her article for the Pineandlakes (MN) Echo Journal: "Studies have shown that going out to eat for lunch provides the highest risk of eating an extra 150-250 calories a day. This could result in gaining one or two pounds each month or 10 to 12 pounds in a year."

In her piece, Bonnie Brost, RD, at Essentia Health in Superior, WI and Duluth, MN, suggests that readers "Try these tips for packing a healthy lunch". Bonnie says that her work as an RD has shown that those who pack their own lunch find it easier to lose or maintain weight, control blood pressure, control diabetes and eat the recommended four to five cups of fruits and vegetables each day.

To help insure that the foods you pack are in good shape and safe to eat, Bonnie suggests looking for sales to buy insulated lunch bags, reusable ice packs, stackable food containers, thermoses or soup mugs.

Bonnie also gives a shout-out to fellow RD Katie Morford and her book, "Best Lunch Box Ever: Ideas and Recipes for School Lunches Kids will Love," and includes her six steps to a superb lunch.

For bringing attention to the connection between planning and packing one's own lunch vs. eating out—for kids and adults—Bonnie Brost was Tuesday's RD of the Day.

Read the article: Try These Tips For Packing A Healthy Lunch

Kathy Kolasa, PhD, RDN, LDN  
Wednesday's RD of the Day covered a topic that we also cover in our October issue: healthy snacking.

In her article for the Greenville (NC) Daily Reflector, Kathy Kolasa, PhD, RDN, LDN, answers a reader's question:

"I started the school year with big plans to pack healthy lunches, but now I am rushed and not doing so well. Have you got any suggestions?"

The East Carolina University Professor Emeritus shares the experience of a medical student she works with on how healthy snacks help control hunger throughout the day.

A study on the connection between overall health and happiness and eating healthy throughout the day is cited and the suggestions are sensible, such as carrying snacks that don't require refrigeration like raisins, nuts and homemade granola bars.

For promoting healthy snacks as a way to control hunger and steer clear of unhealthy eating habits, Kathy was Wednesday's RD of the Day.

Read the article: Healthy Snacks Help Control Hunger Throughout The Day

Stacey Bailey, MS, RD, CDE  
Our RD of the Day for Thursday says "Eating Healthy Is Easier Than You Think" in her article for the Santa Barbara (CA) Noozhawk.

Stacey Bailey, MS, RD, CDE, a clinical dietitian with Cottage Health, outlines the foods for healthy eating.

"By including more plant foods in your diet you can lower your risk for many diseases," she says. "These foods should be the basis of your diet along with lean protein sources such as chicken and fish and low-fat dairy (or alternatives). This also helps lower sodium intake, as fresh foods have little to no sodium, and keep you below the recommended limit of 2000mg per day."

Stacey says that eating a healthful diet may not prevent every disease, but it gives you the best defense to live a long and healthy life. She cites healthy diet foods to live by that include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts and seeds.

For stressing that vegetables and fruits are important elements in a healthy diet, but they're not alone, Stacey was Thursday's RD of the Day.

Read the article: Eating Healthy Is Easier Than You Think

Marisa Moore, MBA, RDN Twitter
The connection between healthy eating and cognitive decline is a hot topic in dietetic circles these days, in particular the MIND diet. Our Friday RD of the Day reports on it, shares a personal connection to the subject, and offers "8 Diet Changes That Can Boost Your Brain Health".

In her Eat + Run post for U.S. News & World Report, Marisa Moore, MBA, RDN, opens up by sharing her loss of a loved one to Alzheimer's disease almost two years ago.

"I began to grasp just how important it is to maintain mental health throughout life," the Atlanta-based professional writes. "Even if the disease hasn't personally affected you, the sheer fact that 1 in 9 people over age 65 has Alzheimer's may be enough to motivate you to prioritize brain health."

Based on a study that shows promise for reducing the risk of Alzheimer's disease and dementia through certain eating patterns rather than any one nutrient, Marisa explains to the uniformed that MIND (Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay), combines the most relevant components of the Mediterranean and the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diets.

She comes out as a proponent of the diet because, "though the study doesn't prove cause and effect, and more trials and research are needed to do so, the diet is a healthy choice overall, whether you're trying to boost brain health or simply eat well."

The conclusion of the piece are eight strategies to incorporate the diet's key foods into your meal prep. For these strategies and her focus on eating for brain health, Marisa is our Friday RD of the Day.

Read the article: 8 Diet Changes That Can Boost Your Brain Health