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.


Melinda Johnson, MS, RDN Twitter
Cornell University Food and Brand Lab research has shown that there are simple lifestyle changes we can make to help avoid overeating without even thinking about it.

Monday's RD of the Day, Melinda Johnson, MS, RDN, the Director of the Didactic Program in Dietetics and a Clinical Assistant Professor for the Nutrition Program at Arizona State University, shares 5 of the top hidden behaviors that can help cut calories in her article for U.S. News and World Report.

Researchers found that the cleanliness of the kitchen and the types of food available in plain sight impact eating behaviors. A chaotic, messy kitchen triggered women to eat more in comparison to a clean, tidy kitchen. Women who have cereal and soft drinks visible on their countertops also tend to weigh significantly more and those with a fruit bowl on display weigh significantly less.

In addition to changing what type of foods are in plain sight, evidence suggests that we may want to reconsider the size and color of our plates. Bigger plates tend to equal bigger portions, and people are more likely to overeat when the color of their food matches the color of their plate.

For explaining the research behind these and other "mindless" environmental/behavioral changes and demonstrating how they can help improve weight loss results, Melinda was selected as Monday's RD of the Day.

Read the article: 5 ways to cut calories without dieting


Brenda Schwerdt, RDN, LD, CNSC  
Beer may be best enjoyed in moderation, but the nutritional value of your favorite drafts may come as a surprise.

"Beer is often touted to be one of the most nutritious alcoholic beverages related to its protein and vitamin B continent. Beer also contains just as many antioxidants as wine," says Tuesday's RD of the Day, Brenda Schwerdt, RDN, LD, CNSC, a clinical dietitian at St. Luke's hospital, in her article for the Duluth News Tribune.

However, not all beers are created equal. Brenda explains that beers can greatly vary in their nutritional content. Alcohol alone provides 7 calories per gram with additional calories coming from the protein and carbohydrate content. Despite popular misconception, this means that light colored beers can actually be higher in calories than dark colored beers.

The health benefits of alcohol are only when consumed in moderation; excessive consumption is dangerous. So what does "in moderation" mean? Men should consume no more than 2 servings and women should limit intake to a single beverage. These servings are based on a 12-ounce drink with 5 percent alcohol, so it's important to keep in mind that a pint is more than a serving at 16-ounces.

For explaining the health benefits of enjoying the occasional cold beer, we raised a glass to Brenda as Tuesday's RD of the Day.

Read the article: While it does offer some nutrition, beer best enjoyed in moderation


Elizabeth Shaw MS, RDN, CLT Facebook Twitter
Zinc is an important micronutrient and Wednesday's RD of the Day explains why it matters in her piece for Fitness magazine, "7 Natural Ways to Add More Zinc to Your Diet (and Why You Should Care)"

Elizabeth Shaw MS, RDN, CLT, not only explains how essential zinc is for immunity, cell growth and division, wound healing, and immune function, but also provides ways to incorporate zinc-rich foods into one's diet with recipe ideas for each of the foods she recommends.

The owner of Shaw's Simple Swaps in sunny San Diego also offers a serious warning. "Don't try to get zinc by popping a supplement. Non-food zinc supplements can actually be toxic!" she urges. "But rest easy knowing zinc from food sources is nontoxic!"

For putting a deserved spotlight on zinc, highlighting foods that are rich in it, and offering recipes to prepare them, Elizabeth was our choice for Wednesday's RD of the Day. Learn more about Elizabeth at shawsimpleswaps.com.

Read the article: 7 Natural Ways to Add More Zinc to Your Diet


Brooke Alpert, MS, RD Facebook Twitter
We all know that eating too much sugar is bad for our health, but how much is really too much? Today's RD of the Day shares 8 signs that you need to cut back on your sugar intake in her article for SELF Magazine.

"By eating a high sugar diet, you cause a hormonal response in your body that's like a wave, it brings you up and then you crash down and it triggers your body to want more sugar," explains Brooke Alpert, MS, RD, author of The Sugar Detox: Lose Weight, Feel Great and Look Years Younger.

Constantly craving the sweet stuff is one sign that you've entered this addictive cycle. Some other signs to look for include breakouts such as acne or rosacea, weight gain, cavities and desensitized taste buds. In addition, rapidly rising and falling blood sugar can cause low energy levels, mood swings and brain fog.

If these reasons aren't enough to encourage you to cut back, keep in mind that excess sugar intake can lead to health complications such as diabetes, obesity and cognitive impairment.

For her detailed, science-based explanation for how sugar impacts the body and why it's best enjoyed in moderation, Brooke is today's RD of the Day. Learn more about Brooke at www.b-nutritious.com and more about The Sugar Detox at www.thesugardetoxbook.com.

Read the article: 8 signs you’re eating too much sugar


Shannon Adair, RD  
Friday's RD of the Day answers a question she commonly hears from her clients: what does a perfect day of eating look like?

Her response: "There is no one, single diet that works best for every person, every day."

Shannon Adair, registered dietitian and health coach, explains that a healthful day of eating varies per person for a number of factors including body composition, metabolism and food preferences as well as different health conditions and goals. For example, what works well for an endurance athlete is different from what is best for a diabetic which is also different from a healthful meal pattern for someone with high cholesterol.

"What works best for your friend, neighbor, co-worker or grandmother may not be the same thing that works best for you. Different health conditions and goals require different eating strategies for success."

Although every trendy eating pattern may not work best for your personal health needs and goals, Shannon says they do tend to have some things in common. The three daily menus she used as examples each focused on foods from at least three food groups and whole, minimally processed foods.

For encouraging us to focus on the healthiest choices we can make each day as an individual instead of attempting to follow a strict eating philosophy or fad, Shannon received Friday's recognition.

Read the article: The perfect 1-day diet. Does it exist?