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Food Insight Blog

Shedding light on the science behind nutrition and food safety.

By: Andrew Benson, Vice President, International Relations, IFIC Foundation  Date: 3/30/12

OK, so now I’ve got your attention! 

What’s the latest food scare that we all need to know about, the latest recall, the latest scary food science story everybody’s talking about? 

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By: Anthony Flood Date: 3/29/12

It seems like every day, someone is trying to raise consumer fears over some ingredient in our food. Soon, rumors begin flying that the substance is responsible for maladies far and wide and an online media campaign begins to force government regulators to ban it.

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By: Madelyn H. Fernstrom, PhD, CNS Date: 3/26/12

One of the questions I’m asked very often is “what should I eat to be healthy.” I believe that most people know what to do. What they really want to know how is to do the right thing consistently. We put a lot of pressure on ourselves to do everything “right” and become perfect eaters.  However, this can sometimes lead to a lot of eating frustration, lack of interest and poor food choices. But there are solutions. Here are a few!

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By: Dayle Hayes, MS, RD   Date: 3/22/12 

I was profoundly affected by my recent school breakfast visit to Billings (Montana) Senior High. Much of my work is fairly abstract – presentations about marketing healthy school meals, webinars about implementing new meal patterns, and interviews about nutrients that kids are missing in the foods they eat. My visit to Billings Senior High for breakfast was more important and straightforward – it was simply about feeding hungry teenagers.

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By: Denise Hauge, M.S.  Date: 3/19/12
 
Most of us have heard that there are many potential health benefits associated with making whole grains a part of a healthful diet. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends that at least half of our daily grain servings should be comprised of whole grains. But have you ever found yourself confused when trying to explain the health benefits of whole grains to a client or friend? Do you have questions about how to identify whole grains in the supermarket? And where are whole grains in fast food and restaurants anyway?

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By: Wendy Reinhardt Kapsak, MS, RD, Senior Director, Health and Wellness, IFIC Foundation  Date: 3/16/12

I love it when my three year-old calls me “Wonder Woman.” LOVE. IT. In turn, I MUST call him Robin and his five year-old brother Batman. Baby Ava is Bat Girl. My husband is the Green Lantern, and while he looks nothing like Ryan Reynolds, I find him very handsome after nearly eight years of marriage. As a busy wife and mom of three young children – trying to “do it all,” I often find myself wishing I had real super powers – like the kind that with just a snap of my fingers or laser-beam eyes, I could whip up a nutritious meal, everyone would eat it and call me well, “Wonder Woman.”

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By: Food Insight Blog Contributors  Date: 3/14/2012

Today is Registered Dietitian Day!  This day was created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly the American Dietetic Association) to increase awareness of the importance of registered dietitians as the indispensable providers of food and nutrition services and to recognize RDs for their commitment to helping people enjoy healthful lives.

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By: Kimberly Reed, Executive Director, International Food Information Council Foundation Date: 3/12/12

A big smile came to my face when I heard a National Public Radio report celebrating the Girl Scouts 100th anniversary.  If you were a Girl Scout or know a Girl Scout, take a few minutes and listen to this NPR story – Girl Scouts: 100 Years of Blazing New Trails by Tovia Smith. Hearing today’s Girl Scouts in full “cookie selling leadership mode” made me giggle…as it was like I listening to a tape recording of me and my troop of close friends doing the same thing more than 30 years ago! The only thing that has changed is the price of the cookies. Thank you, NPR, for prompting this wonderful trip down memory lane.  

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By: Kimberly Reed, Executive Director, IFIC Foundation Date: 3/8/2012

Happy National Ag Day 2012 from the International Food Information Council (IFIC) and the IFIC Foundation!  

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By: Lindsey Loving Date: 3/7/12

I recently had the opportunity to visit a farm for the first time ... ever. Sure, I'd driven by farms and seen the cattle grazing and the fields with row upon row of corn and cotton. But I never had an up-close and personal look, until now. I was amazed by the efficiency with which the cows were milked and the pride the farmers took in their work. But one of the most striking things was how far agricultural technology has come, and how that technology enables farmers to do their jobs more efficiently than ever before.

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By: Marianne Smith Edge, MS, RD, LD, FADA Date: 3/6/12

It’s National Nutrition Month,® and the International Food Information Council (IFIC) Foundation is excited to participate and embrace the theme “Get Your Plate in Shape to Manage Your Weight.” This theme supports USDA’s MyPlate, which is a result of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The new icon, MyPlate, illustrates the five food groups that are the building blocks for a healthful diet using a familiar image—a plate.

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By: Lindsey Loving Date: 2/29/12

Although American Heart Month is coming to an end, we should keep heart health in mind throughout the year.

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By: Liz Williams Date: 2/28/12

I have absolutely no psychological training, but I love playing armchair psychologist.  I am very willing to speculate on the reasons why someone makes odd choices or acts in a nontraditional manner.  It’s fun.  I do not take myself seriously in doing this, but my pursuit of armchair psychology is supplemented by my willingness to read about psychology and watch psychiatry-related television shows and movies. 

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By: Elizabeth Rahavi, RD Date: 2/24/2012

Ba-boom, ba-boom, ba-boom, can you hear that noise? It’s the sound of your heart beating, working hard on your behalf, minute after minute, hour after hour, day after day, year after year. The heart is one of the most amazing organs in our body, and American Heart Month in February gives us time to pause and appreciate its hard work. As my colleague mentioned in her post earlier this month, there are all kinds of intangible benefits that are connected to heart health and exercise and the same is true when it comes to the diet.

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By: Katie Burns Date: 2/22/12

It seems like just yesterday my colleague was blogging about an arsenic “scare” (Arsenic in Apple Juice: Do You Really Need to Worry?), and now the media is buzzing about another arsenic issue—arsenic and brown rice, specifically organic brown rice syrup. 

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By Sarah Romotsky, R.D.  Date: 2/17/12

I’ve been teaching spinning classes for more than seven years now and have watched people transform their lives, both physically and mentally, through exercise. When I ask people who come to my spin class why they enjoy it and keep coming back, the answer usually involves something about muscle tone and weight loss/management. These responses are not surprising, since these are the benefits of exercise we can see. They are the tangible results that come with physical activity that help let you know that the physical activity you are doing is making a difference.

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By: Keri Gans, MS, RD, CDN, Author, The Small Change Diet  Date:2/15/12

Recently, I was a guest on the Doctor Oz Show to discuss whether or not a person can become addicted to food. To prepare for the segment I searched for conclusive science-based evidence pointing in that direction.  An important and recurring question was whether or not the body goes through physiological withdrawal in the same way it would for drugs and alcohol when we stop eating a particular food.  My research into controlled human trials on the topic left me unconvinced.

 

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By: Erika Wincheski, University of Maryland Dietetic Intern Date: 2/13/12

More than a month into the New Year may be a good time to take stock of those resolutions we made to improve various aspects of our lives. I don’t know how it is for others, but despite all the advice floating around about how to stick to our commitments, it still can be very challenging to avoid disappointment. According to a recent study, about 75% of Americans maintain their resolutions for at least a week, with 71% hanging in there for two weeks. Not surprisingly, the percentage keeps decreasing as time increases.

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By Kimberly Reed, Executive Director,International Food Information Council Foundation  Date: 2/10/12

 

I would like to wish Let's Move!, First Lady Michelle Obama's initiative dedicated to solving the problem of obesity within a generation, a very happy second birthday.
 
The First Lady celebrated this anniversary in Iowa with 14,000 students. She highlighted an important concept in combatting obesity – energy balance (“calories in” should equal “calories out”) – when she led the crowd in dancing the “Interlude” (a dance that originated at the University of Northern Iowa). The First Lady also emphasized that “you do not have to be the President of the United States, you don’t have to be an Olympic athlete, to make exercise a regular part of your life.”
 

 

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By: Katie Burns   Date: 2/8/12
 
Some days, it seems one can’t turn on the television without hearing some story attempting to scare us about our food: whether it has to do with salt, sugar or even low levels of naturally occurring chemicals, these types of stories are part of our reality.  

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