Category Archives: Nutrition and News

Food Group Bingo – Nutrition Activity for Kids

Food Group Bingo – Nutrition Activity for Kids
It's easy to be daunted by trying to decide what to eat, and even more so when it comes to how to feed your family.  I have always loved visuals - they help me to understand new concepts and think about how to apply them to my own life.  The USDA has been helping people to understand what makes up a healthy diet for as long as I could remember - but for years, their diagrams were complicated and often confusing.  This "plate" is their most recent version - and makes the most sense to me.  It's...

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The Science of Fats In Our Diet – Sci Show

The Science of Fats In Our Diet – Sci Show
I'm the first person to admit that there are loads of other people who can explain things better than I can.  So, when I was teaching high school biology, I often showed clips from one of my favorite virtual science teachers, Hank Green on SciShow. His shows are good.  Really good.  But they are FAST and packed with information - so probably not the best way to be introduced to a topic you have never heard of before...but pretty darned good if you have studied something and want an excellent...

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Plant-Based Diet Myths Debunked: Protein

Plant-Based Diet Myths Debunked: Protein
Just ask any vegetarian what they hear the most after telling somebody that they don't eat meat.  I am not a betting gal, but I'd put money on this:  "How do you get enough protein?" All joking aside, you do not have to eat meat in order for your body to get enough protein.  I thought it might be helpful to share the basics of how proteins are built and what they are used for in your body. Some basic biology vocabulary: Mono = one; Poly = many Monomers are single units (like train...

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Hospital Food – Not Ideal for Promoting Health

Hospital Food – Not Ideal for Promoting Health
Most of us have spent more time in hospitals than we would like - either as patients, or visiting loved ones.  Our most recent experience in the hospital was with our son, when he was being evaluated by a team of neuropsychiatric specialists in Utah.  It was the first step of our journey, before he went to his current therapeutic setting. He was very excited because he had earned the privilege of taking us downstairs to the cafeteria for lunch instead of having to stay upstairs and have lunch...

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Selling Out – Free Gatorade for Students

Selling Out – Free Gatorade for Students
My husband wishes I would learn to stay quiet...at least until I get tenure at my high school teaching job. See, I have a tendency to rock the boat about issues that I am passionate about (remember the pie-eating-contest-fiasco from a few years ago?).  This time around, I had a hard time keeping my trap shut when I heard that Gatorade reps would be on our high school campus handing out free samples to our students during G-week. [caption id="attachment_5431" align="aligncenter" width="298"...

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Media Literacy with Teens – Spoof Ads

Media Literacy with Teens – Spoof Ads
It should come as no surprise that a lesson on media literacy would accompany our big food unit in Biology.  With food porn from Carl's Junior, weight loss advertisements, diet foods, teensy snack packages, and other not-so-subtle messages, food ads carry a pretty powerful message.  I wanted my students to understand a few things about the real world: Women do NOT look like that. Men should not expect women to look like that. You don't need to make love to your food in the back seat of...

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The Weight of the Nation - Challenges for Famili...

We are in the midst of a unit on food and food systems ecology in my  high school biology class, so I couldn't think of a better time for the HBO series Weight of the Nation to air.  Even better is the fact that HBO is generously sharing this show with everyone, even if you aren't a subscriber. I found this portion of the show especially compelling - it focuses on our  nation's children and the obesity crisis we are currently in.  Things definitely  need to change around here.  Maybe one...

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Summer Travel – Making Healthier Food Choices

Summer Travel – Making Healthier Food Choices
[caption id="attachment_5130" align="aligncenter" width="427" caption="Boys on the go..."][/caption] Many of us are on the road this summer, heading to hiking trails, taking road trips with our families, or driving our kids to sleep away camp.   It can be tempting to stop in for fast food when hunger strikes, but how can you select menu items that are good for you and your family? We all stop at side-of-the-road restaurants every now and then. But instead of beating ourselves up about being...

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Parenting: Progress NOT Perfection

Parenting: Progress NOT Perfection
Bring a parent is really hard. This is probably the only parenting issue that I am 100% certain about. We do the best that we know how to do.  But let's be honest for a second.  Do you ever have the temptation to avoid reality for just a moment, so that there would be less to feel guilty about? Before Robyn O'Brien was forced to look at the foods she was feeding her family, she didn't enjoy being "preached at" about the benefits of drinking organic milk.  She had enough on her mind.  She...

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Happy to be Getting Crunchy with Corn

Happy to be Getting Crunchy with Corn
One of the best parts about being involved in social media is the friendships that I have developed over the years.  Gina Rau started as a virtual friend, as we worked on a blogging challenge together, and she has become a dear "real life" friend.  I adore her new website, Feed Our Families, which strives to help families make better food choices.  When I was planning to be away at a culinary conference and Gina offered to do a guest post, I jumped at the chance.  I know you'll love it as much...

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