Contributed by Rebecca Cray, Student Nutrition Intern, Trinity ‘15
As a Duke student, I am no stranger to the late-night cram session the night before an exam, or the essay-writing marathon that stretches into the early morning hours. For many of us in college, day and night have become flexible terms that more often than not misalign with being awake and being asleep. When burning the midnight oil, we often crave a snack to keep us going through the night. However, a recent study by the Salk Institute for Biological Studies (reviewed here in the NY Times) suggests that these late-night nibbles may be messing with our bodies’ internal clocks.
Contributed by Franca B. Alphin, MPH, RDN, LDN, CSSD, CEDRD
It’s ironic that at a time when new legislation will demand that restaurants (having more than 20 locations), and vending machines (anyone owning more than 20) will have to disclose calorie and nutrition information, we are also learning that counting calories might be counterproductive to addressing the obesity epidemic in this country.
It’s not rocket science to figure out that calorie counting might not be working – it’s been done for years and look where it got us. Believe me, I realize that our obesity epidemic is not just about calorie counting: obesity is actually very complex, we always just want to over simplify it by bringing it back to calories in and calories out. We now know that the source of calories consumed have different effects metabolically in our bodies.
Contributed by Toni Ann Apadula, RDN, LDN, CEDRD
The semester is rapidly coming to an end, and we all know what that means……. yup, time to study for finals. Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could offer you some secret eating tips to help boost your memory? Well we don’t have any magic formulas but we do have some good advice.
Think Healthy Fats
There is strong evidence that the same anti-inflammatory properties that help protect your heart can improve memory. These fats include fatty fish like salmon and tuna, nuts/seeds, avocado, olive oil and flax.
Where to find them on campus*:
You’ve come to the right place, yes, this is the nutrition blog. It may seem like a juxtaposition that a dietitian is writing about burgers, but a good burger is one of my favorite things to eat. A local burger joint recently posted that they were having a Thanksgiving contest. One and all were welcomed to enter the contest for the best themed burger. The plan was for judges to choose the top 3 recipes and then taste test to pick the winner. Rules of the competition were that it had to be a turkey burger and include cranberries, sweet potatoes, stuffing or all 3. As I enjoy cooking and a challenge, I decided to enter.
Contributed by Rebecca Cray, Student Nutrition Intern, Trinity ’15
Four dollars. On Duke’s campus, that could get you a single bowl of soup at the Loop. Most of us spend far more than four dollars on each meal we eat, with Duke’s minimum meal plan allotting $20 per day. However, for a great number of North Carolinians, four dollars is all they have to feed themselves each and every day. Four dollars is the daily allowance given by North Carolina’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, also formerly known as Food Stamps. In the month of October in Durham County alone, over 44,000 individuals were utilizing SNAP. Hunger and concern for where one’s next meal will come from is a daily reality for too many.
By: Franca Alphin, MPH, RDN, CSSD, CEDRD
It’s mid-November – chances are you’ve adapted pretty well to your school eating routines by now – whether it’s eating with friends or grabbing a bite on the way to the next class or meeting. But wouldn’t you know it, the holidays are just around the corner and everything is about to change again. The holidays can be a wonderful time of year, but they are usually associated with a lot of food and eating: for some this can be challenging. Consider using some of the following tips to stay well and focused during this time.
By: Rebecca Cray, Nutrition Intern
You’ve heard it circulating for weeks now like bad background music – the symphony of sneezes in your stat lecture, the cacophony of coughs in comp-sci, the serenade of sniffles on the C1. Everywhere you turn, Duke seems to be coming down with something, be it the never-ending cold, the dreaded flu, or some unnamed combination of sore throat, runny nose, and congestion. Toss in the stress of impending midterms and busy weekend plans and it may seem imminent that you’ll be next in line at Student Health. But before you get too resigned to the idea of getting sick this season, remember to SMILE and follow these tips for keeping your immune system in top shape:
Blog author: Toni Ann Apadula, RDN, LDN, CEDRD
As a dietitian I am often asked questions about soy foods acting like estrogen in the body, are they safe? Do they contribute to causing breast cancer? I will admit over the years the information has been varied, but for the past several years researchers have found more and more information confirming that eating soy in moderation even as a breast cancer survivor is not a problem.
Since it is breast cancer awareness month I decided to do some additional research and explain for you in more detail.
First of all let’s think about where you might find soy in the diet, the following is a list of dietary sources:
By Nutrition Intern Lauren Hagedorn
Swimming in a sea of conflicting nutrition advice? Have no fear! “The Big Three” are here!
“The Big Three” tutorials are streamlined guides to understanding carbs, proteins, and fats. Complete with colorful pictures (featuring some of your fellow Dukies!) and “take-home messages,” these user-friendly tutorials offer the basics on the 3 essential macronutrients – what they are, where to find them, why they’re important, and how much our bodies need to succeed!
In the past we discussed options for sugar substitutes, such as honey, agave nectar, and brown rice syrup – all tasty options to sweeten your food or beverage, but that do come with a caloric punch. This week, we’ll dedicate our post to the sweeteners that are calorie-free, yet a bit controversial – artificial sweeteners. Think of those colored packets on your restaurant table, diet cola, sugar-free gum and candy, and sugar-free yogurt or ice cream to name a few – artificially sweetened substances are all around. But what are they? These synthetic sugar substitutes are sometimes derived from natural substances, such as herbs or even table sugar. These sweeteners are many times sweeter than regular sugar and are sometimes called “intense sweeteners.”
Possible health benefits? On one hand, artificial sweeteners don’t contain any calories, so you may think of them as a way to lower your calorie intake. However, research indicates this may not be the case, and it’s been suggested that consuming these artificial sweeteners may be associated with no change in weight or in some, an increase in weight. On the other hand, artificial sweeteners don’t contribute to tooth decay like sugar can.
Possible health risks?