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By: Mary Alice Shreve   Date: 6/29/10

The summer grilling season has arrived and with it comes a smorgasbord of good eats. Regardless of if your mouth waters at the sight of ribs or if burgers and dogs are more your style, you can have your ‘Q and eat it too with these tips for keeping your grilling healthful. The grill-meister, the sous-chef, the green bean casserole-bearing guest and the apple pie artist alike can learn how to enjoy a balanced meal with healthy offerings. 
 

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By: Katie Burns Date: 6/25/10

Summer vacation is upon us, and kids will start enjoying the long days by playing outside, going to sleepovers and pool parties, and seeking air conditioning and independence at the mall or the movie theater.  For parents of food-allergic children the lack of structure and supervision is certainly a cause for concern: how can I keep my child safe?  Fortunately, summer fun doesn’t have to stop on account of food allergies.  With some planning, food allergic children, and their parents, can safely enjoy the summer!

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By: Win Jenkins-Ford Date: 6/23/10

If you’re like me and trying to eat a more healthful diet especially while getting ready for the bathing suit season, you might want to pay special attention to what I have to share: You can have your fat and be healthy too!   

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By: Katie Burns   Date: 6/21/10

As Mother Nature proves to be fickle with hot summer thunderstorms, tornados and flooding as well as other disasters like earthquakes and hurricanes, it is as good a time as any for a reminder on how to be food safe in the event of a power outage in a weather–related emergency.  Here are a few thoughts for you to keep in mind:

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By: Gwen Vito  Date: 6/18/10

We are all familiar with many traditional ballpark favorites: cheeseburger, chicken tenders, French fries, hot dogs, not to mention the peanuts and cracker jacks. But is it possible to maintain a healthful diet inside the stadium? As it turns out, yes! Many ballparks nowadays are adding healthier, yet still delicious, options to their menus.

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By: Lindsay Maurath   Date: 6/17/10

Fitting in weekly workouts is challenging enough without adding nutrition into the mix, but the next time you pack your gym bag you may want to think about throwing in a granola bar.  Despite recent media coverage, a snack may be just as important as your sneakers in making the most of your workout.  The argument over a pre-workout snack has long been the subject of debate.  To eat or not to eat, how much, what and when are common questions that come up in the discussion. 

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Note: With the release of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans Advisory Committee report, we wanted to highlight some of our reflections on the discussions over the past couple of years.  This blog was originally posted on 5/18/10 following the final Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee meeting and sums up many of the findings in the report.                                                                                                                                                           

By: Elizabeth Rahavi, RD

Currently, the United States Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee is in the process of finalizing their Committee report to inform the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which will be jointly produced by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Department of Health and Human Services. Once finalized, the report will be used to set nutrition standards for all federal food and nutrition policy.

After listening to the Committee deliberations over the past two years, it has become clear that for the first time, the emphasis of this report will focus on reducing the prevalence of overweight and obesity among the U.S. population. Earlier editions of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans focused on a healthy population and provided recommendations for food groups and nutrients to encourage helping Americans reduce their risk of nutritional deficiencies and chronic disease.  Today, however, in an effort to help Americans achieve a healthful diet, the Committee is placing a special emphasis on foods that are high in fiber and whole grains, as well as nutrients such as vitamin C, A, E, and D, calcium, and potassium. These foods are known as nutrient-dense foods.

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By: Lindsay Maurath   Date: 6/14/10

June is National Dairy Month and the perfect time to celebrate the nutritious properties of dairy products.  Besides the wonderful taste of a cold chocolate milkshake, the creamy texture of yogurt or the added tang of sharp cheddar on a salad, dairy products provide vital nutrients like calcium, vitamin D and protein.   With all their benefits it’s hard to imagine any risks they might pose and lucky for us dairy lovers most products aren’t risky at all.  However, raw milk, or milk that is not pasteurized, and products made from raw milk carry a higher risk of contamination from disease causing bacteria. 

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By: Kerry Robinson, RD and Jennifer Arougheti (Undergraduate Dietetic Student and IFIC Foundation Intern)   6/11/10

Here in Washington, D.C., the hot and humid weather has arrived.  During these summer months, you may have hydration on your mind.  We know that water is necessary for carrying out our body’s vital functions and that maintaining proper hydration helps to keep us energized throughout the day, but sometimes drinking one glass of water after another can feel like a chore.  By learning more about your fluid needs, as well as practical ways to meet these needs, you’ll be well on your way to hydration optimization before July!

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By: Jania Matthews Date: 6/9/10

This is the time of year where television season finales are commonplace.  While some shows I don’t fret if I miss, there’s one show’s finale that captured my undivided attention.  This show is none other than the Biggest Loser.

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By: Win Jenkins-Ford   Date: 6/7/10

No question about it, we all like to feel good and look good, and we know the foods we eat (along with exercise) help with this process including foods with proteins.  Did you know that protein plays an important and necessary role in repairing and building every tissue and cell in the body including the skin, hair and nails?  You could say the nutrients you get from protein and foods with protein are almost as essential to the body as water.

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By: Jania Matthews   Date: 6/3/10

A few weeks ago the White House Farmer’s Market re-emerged to the streets of DC to again offer home-baked breads and pastries, pasta, jam, dips, meat, dairy, herbs, and even soap.  While my first trip to the Market was to hear the First Lady speak during its opening day, my return visit was peaked by curiosity—were people really into the Market? Would I see more options this time around?

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By: Kerry Robinson, RD   Date: 6/2/10

Many of us can probably recall a time when we waited in a long line just to purchase the latest mobile or electronic technology.  But, do we have the same reaction when it comes to technology used in food production? Granted, it may not seem as exciting as that new MP3 player or cell phone, but does food technology deserve a bad rap? What do Americans really think about food technology, and what types of messages resonate with them?

To gain insight into these very issues, the International Food Information Council (IFIC) recently conducted our 14th “Consumer Perceptions of Food Technology” Survey (formerly the “IFIC Survey of Consumer Attitudinal Trends toward Food Biotechnology”), which explores U.S. consumers’ perceptions of various aspects of plant and animal biotechnology, as well as sustainability and new and emerging technologies such as nanotechnology.

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By: Lindsay Maurath   Date: 6/1/10

I’m always fascinated by the latest health food trend and how quickly a novel product becomes main stream after a celebrity sighting or clever product placement.  After a few weeks the craze is over and something new takes center stage.   I suspect you already know a few trends of the moment, but the one I’m most interested in is coconut water.  Not to be confused with coconut milk which is squeezed from the pulp of the fruit, coconut water comes from the inside of green or young coconuts.  Because it is relatively low in calories, contains carbohydrates and is a natural source of electrolytes it has been toted as nature’s sports drink-with the ability to aid in rehydration and recovery.  As a runner, my curiosity is further heightened by such promises of improved performance. 

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