Diane May Nutrition Blog

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What You Can Do For a Longer Life

May 6th, 2022

A new study published in the journal Cell researched both animal and human studies to find keys to a longer, healthier life through diet and nutrition. There is no one size fits all approach to living longer and healthier, but there are definitly basic principals that everyone can adopt to improve quality of life over time. The basic outcome of this research is a mid to high carbohydrate (complex carbs only) and low, but sufficient protein intake that is mostly plant based but includes regular consumption of fish and vegetarian derived proteins is optimal. This is very similar to research done in the Blue Zone studies. A low but sufficient protein diet or a normal protein intake with high legume consumption contributes to the reduction in the levels of pro-aging blood markers such as Insulin. A fat consumption providing about 30% of energy mostly from plant-based and pro-longevity sources is also part of the longevity diet. This protocol would also include a 12–13 hour daily fasting period that has been shown to be safe, feasible, and effective in many studies. The periodic use of a fasting mimicking diet in those age 18 to 70 may be key in reversing the insulin resistance generated by a high-calorie diet. How does this translate?

  • Consume only complex carbs and reduced white refined carbs. always read labels to make sure the grains you are consuming are actually whole and do not contain bleached, refined white carbohydrates.
  • Reduce consumption of packaged foods. The more whole foods you consume, the better.
  • Incorporate more beans into your diet. Shoot for at least one day a week that is plant based only.
  • Increase consumption of vegetables and fruits. 8-11 is optimal. a serving of vegetables os 1 cup raw or 1/2 cup cooked. A serving of fruit is 1/2 cup or one small whole fruit (such as an apple).
  • Add fish 2-3times per week and eliminate red meat (that includes pork).
  • Incorpotae healthy fats such as avocado, nuts, seeds and olive oil.

It is important to note that everyones needs are different  as we age, especially those 65 and older, some of our nutritional needs change, especially protein. Never alter your diet without consulting your healthcare provider or RD as this can cause fraility and harm.  Food is power and we should harness the benefits to improve quality of life.

White beans are full of fiber and protein, both of which help slow digestion and curb blood sugar spikes. Canned beans are both easy to use and inexpensive–a win-win!

Source: Diabetic Living Magazine, Fall 2018

 

Recipe Summary

Total:20 mins
Active: 20 mins
Servings: 4

Ingredients

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Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Combine kale, pine nuts, Parmesan, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, water, salt and 1 teaspoon oil in a food processor. Process until nearly smooth, scraping down the sides as necessary. Set aside.

  • Heat the remaining 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly soft, about 2 minutes. Add beans and cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 3 minutes. Season with pepper.

  • To serve, top the bean mixture with the pesto.

 

Nutrition Facts

1 cup bean mixture and 2 tablespoons pesto

 

288 calories; protein 14g; carbohydrates 35g; dietary fiber 11g; sugars 4g; fat 11g; saturated fat 2g; cholesterol 4mg; sodium 435mg.
 
 
 
 
 
 

Supplementation and Medications

March 12th, 2022

Americans spend 30 Billion dollars a year on supplements, but do we really know what we are buying or if we really need it? Unlike medications, supplements are not regulated by the government. The label is regulated by the FTC, so if a company makes false claims on the label, the FTC can step in. But what about the actual product? The manufacturer is responsible for the legitimacy/quality of the actual product. They are not tested for safety or efficacy by the FDA. When in doubt, look for a product that has been tested by either the independent, nonprofit US Pharmacopoeial (USP) Convention Dietary Supplement Verification Program or ConsumerLab.com. Food is always the best place to start if you want to add nutients to your diet, not an oral supplement. It is always important to tell your physician about supplements that you take, as many can have serious interactions with medications. There are common medications that can reduce nutrient absorption and potentially cause deficiencies. Start with food, but if you feel you cannot meet your needs with food, consider supplementation. Below are just a few of the common medications that can cause deficiencies, I will list the most basic repletion and some, not all interactions and then food sources:

  • Acid suppresing medications and antiacids: H2 deplete calcium, folic acid, iron, B12, and D3. PPI deplete magnesium and B12. The recommended supplements: B12 25-1000 mcg/day, Magnesium 250-400 mg/day and Calcium 500-1000 mg/day divided doses. Potential interactions: Goldenseal, ginger and green tea (tagament only).
  • Antibiotics: May deplete calcium, magnesium, potassium, B vitamins and Vitamin K. Calcium 500-1000 mg/day divided doses, Magnesium 250-400 mg. Some interactions include green tea catechins, St. Johns wort, iron and zinc. inetractions: St. johns Wort, Green tea catechins, zinc.
  • Anxiety medications: This class only is regarding benzodiazepines. Calcium 500-1000 mg in divided doses. Interacts with Kava.
  • Birth control: Folic acid 240 mcg, magnesium 250-400 mg and Vitamin B62-5 mg. Interactions include copper, iron, garlic, St. johns Wort, and green tea.Blood pressure medications: Calcium 500-1000 mg divided doses, folic acid 120-240 mcg, magnesium 250-500 mg, CoQ10 100-200 mg. Interactions garlic, ginko biloba, St. Johns Wort, green tea, goldenseal, melatonin.
  • Cholesterol lowering medications: CoQ10 100-200 mg, Vitamin D3 1000-2000 IU. May interact with garlic, St. Johns Wort, Red rice yeast, Vitamin A.
  • Diabetes medication (oral): Folic acid 120-240 mcg, Vitamin B12 25-1000 mcg, Calcium 500-1000 mg, Vitamin D3 1000-2000 IU. May interfere with: Alfalfa, aloe vera, ALA, bilberry, CoQ10, chromium, garlic, ginko biloba, ginseng, green tea, melatonin, milk thistle, niacin, St. johns Wort, Vitamin K.
  • Hormone Replacement Therapy: Folic acid 240 mcg, Magnesium 250-400 mg, B6, 2-5 mg and B12 25-1000 mcg. May interact wieth caffeine, red clover extract, soy isoflavones, St. Johns Wort and zinc.

It is always best to start with food. Good sources of some of the most common nutrients include:

  • Calcium: Dairy, dark leafy greens, tofu, sardines, canned salmon, unsweetened fortified plant milks.
  • Folate (folic acid): Asparagus, avocado, broccoli, spinach, lentils, eggs, banana, beans, peas, citrus.
  • Vitamin B12: Eggs, dairy, nutritional yeast, beef, fish, chicken, spinach.
  • Vitamin B6 Eggs, banana, salmon, chickpeas, dairy, sweet potato, carrots, spinach.
  • Vitamin C: Citrus, peppers, strawberries, broccoli, kiwi, potatoes.
  • Vitamin D3: Cold water fatty fish, milk, mushrooms (raw), unsweetened fortified plant milk.
  • Magnesium: Avocado, almonds, beans, quinoa, brown rice, seeds, beans, spinach.
  • CoQ10: fatty fish, spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, strawberries, oranges, soy, lentils, nuts and seeds.
  • Iron: spinach, tofu, lentils, animal proteins, beans, dried fruit. It is important to boost iron absorption of plant based foods with Vitamin C rich foods such as citrus.

Always talk to your physician or dietitian before taking any supplements. Start with food first and remember, if a little is good, a lot is NOT better when you are taking a supplement. Many supplements can reach toxic levels and can be dangerous. The best way to go is always with a balanced, well rounded diet with vegetables, fruits, whole grains, low fat dairy and lean proteins.

 

 
 
Recipe Summary
Active: 15 mins
Total: 45 mins
Servings: 4
 
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Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Squeeze grated sweet potato with paper towels to remove excess moisture; place in a large bowl. Pulse oats in a food processor until finely ground; add to the bowl with the sweet potatoes. Add beans, scallions, mayonnaise, tomato paste, curry powder and salt to the bowl; mash the mixture together with your hands. Shape into four 1/2-inch-thick patties. Place the patties on a plate; refrigerate for 30 minutes.

  • Stir yogurt, dill and lemon juice together in a small bowl; set aside.

  • Heat oil in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the patties; cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes per side.

  • Divide the yogurt sauce evenly among top and bottom bun halves. Top each bottom bun half with a burger and cucumber slices; replace top bun halves.

Tips

To make ahead: Prepare patties (Step 1); wrap and refrigerate for up to 2 days.

Nutrition Facts

 

454 calories; protein 11.5g; carbohydrates 54.2g; dietary fiber 8.9g; sugars 8.8g; fat 22.2g; saturated fat 2.7g; vitamin a iu 9670.2IU; vitamin c 8.7mg; folate 94.8mcg; calcium 200.1mg; iron 3.5mg; magnesium 82.4mg; potassium 612.4mg; sodium 432.4mg; thiamin 0.3mg.

Ingredients