By Elizabeth Parker, PhD, RD
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015 recommends consuming a healthy eating pattern that includes a variety of foods, which includes a variety of vegetables and fruits. But did you know that most Americans don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables? On any given day, Americans over the age of 2 years consume less than 1 serving of fruit and less than 1-½ servings of vegetables, far below the recommended intakes.
Fruits and vegetables contain a variety of nutrients and fiber that helps your body stay healthy. In addition to providing key nutrients, eating fruits and vegetables while staying within your body’s recommended caloric needs, can help you control your weight.
By Lyssa Balick, MS
What is Spice MyPlate?
Spice MyPlate was a nutrition education concept co-developed by The Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and The Institute for Integrative Health in 2012 (1). The premise was to combine best practices for nutrition from the MyPlate food model with hands on educational experiences using spices and herbs to make flavorful meals and snacks (2).
In 2013, students from two Baltimore City High Schools learned about 12 core spices and herbs and how to incorporate them into their meals. They were compared with a control group who learned about MyPlate, but did not learn about spices and herbs or how to use them in their meals. The study showed that when students learned about spices in an interactive way that included meal prep and cooking, they were more likely to consume whole grains and protein foods and their attitudes towards eating vegetables were more positive compared to the control group(3).
By Termeh Feinberg, PhD, MPH
When envisioning this blog post, it was challenging to decide where to begin because digestion is such a complex function of our bodies; there is no one size fits all approach, and when we are able to pinpoint strategies (natural or otherwise) that work for us, we are often beset with disappointment when our tried-and-true approaches stop being so effective. The gut, composed of ever-changing networks of bacteria, has such an influence on our physiology and resulting digestive health outcomes. Negative changes to these bacteria and their respective relationships, including environmental changes, are factors which influence our gut health. These and other changes result in discomfort among some individuals. There are a number of natural approaches employed (each with varying degrees of evidence) for strengthening one’s digestion, including:
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