This month I wrote an article about mate tea in the Food and Nutrition magazine Stone Soup- check it out:
"Do you know mate? No, it's not some new Australian dish! Mate (pronounced MAH-tay) is a traditional tea-like beverage, popular and traditional in South American countries including Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, southern Chile, eastern Bolivia and southern Brazil. But now, mate is gaining worldwide popularity and rapidly penetrating global markets including the United States. As an Argentinean, seeing mate products at the FNCE 2012 expo was a nice surprise!
But what exactly is it?
Mate is an infusion drink made by brewing the dried leaves of the yerba mate tree (Ilex Paraguarensis). In South America, mate is typically drunk out of a dried gourd using a metal straw with a strainer called a bombilla. To make the drink, about two ounces of dry leaves are packed into the bombilla, hot water is poured in to steep, and the drink is enjoyed. More water is added multiple times until as much as half to one full liter of water has passed over the leaves....
see the full post hhttp://foodandnutritionmagazine.com/all-about-mate-tea
Again I was invited to blog in Stone Soup, the blog of Food and Nutrition Magazine from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
This time the subject was meat, so Argentina couldn't be out.
Here is the post:
"If you think the Americans are the world's biggest beef eaters, think again. Argentineans and Uruguayans lead the way, consuming around 132 pounds of beef per person per year. Meanwhile, Americans eat about 95 pounds of beef a year; Australians, 86 pounds; and Brazilians, 79 pounds. Most Argentinean beef is produced for internal markets, whereas Uruguay exports most of what it produces.
In Argentina, where I live, beef is a point of national pride. It's a key component of the traditional cuisine that began in the 19th century, when there were thousands of cattle in the Pampas region, and beef became a staple in the diets of our version of cowboys, called gauchos.
You may have heard about superior quality of Argentinean beef. I'm trying to be impartial, but it really is the best. But why? The most important differentiating feature between beef from South America and the rest of the world is our soil and mild weather. Together, they make great conditions for animals to pasture freely on the prairie—grass-fed beef is still the norm here.
Grass-fed beef not only has quality advantages over feed-lot systems; it seems to be better for your health too. Beef from pastures is lower in saturated fat and cholesterol and contains higher proportion of healthy omega 3 fatty acids when compared to that from feed lots. Beef from pastures also is the richest natural dietary source of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which is believed to have anti-cancer properties.
When it comes time to cook, Argentineans like to keep things simple. Asado, beef grilled on an open fire pit, is Argentina's signature dish and it's a must whenever we gather with friends and family. Parrillada is a mixed-grill platter that usually includes sausages and organ meats—also called "offal" in English—like kidneys, sweetbreads, intestines and blood sausage.
We typically don't add much seasoning to grilled beef besides a little chimichurri (an Argentinean herb-dressing) drizzled after cooking. Beef is also served in many other ways like milanesas (deep-fried breaded beef) andempanadas (turnovers).
It is said that Argentineans make use of every body part of the cow—and that's pretty close to the truth! Besides the organ meats of parrilladas, other traditional dishes use beef tongue (lengua a la vinagreta, meaning: "tongue in vinaigrette"), stomach lining (guiso de mondongo: "stomach lining stew"), liver (higado con cebolla: "liver and onions") and brain (ravioles de seso: "brain-stuffed ravioli"). This commitment to using as much of a cow as possible is also why Argentinean leather goods are recognized around the world for their quality.
Not all people like organ meats (like me, for instance). Because these dishes usually require more time for preparation (especially to ensure food safety) and slow cooking, modern Argentineans—just like modern Americans—tend to choose more simple options. But, we must not forget that organ meats are a low-cost source of protein and other nutrients like iron, zinc, phosphorus, copper and B vitamins. The Argentinean Food Guidelines (Guias Alimentarias para la Población Argentina) recommend choosing between kidney, liver, tongue and stomach lining. The other organs are higher in fat and cholesterol.
To get a taste in America for how South Americans eat, look for a good "parrilla"—an Argentinean restaurant. Or, cook some U.S. grass-fed beef the Argentinean way. Here is an easy recipe I created for the Eat Well Argentina app (Eat Well Argentina is part of Eat Well Global, a collection of nutritionist-led guides to eating well around the globe.)"
See the rest of the post here
I was invited to blog at Food and Nutrition Magazine guest blog "Stone Soup". I pick a subject that is traditional food of the north region of Argentina and a potential "food of the future". Don't miss it!
"If there is one trendy food that you have to take seriously it is quinoa (pronounced "keen-wah"). You may already know about this crop and its outstanding nutritional properties—it is considered a "super grain" not only because all of its nutritional benefits, but also because it's easy to cultivate (it grows almost everywhere!). What's more, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations has declared 2013 the "International Year of the Quinoa." This FAO says this designation is designed to "focus world attention on the role that quinoa´s biodiversity and nutritional value plays in providing food security and nutrition [and] the eradication of poverty....." Read more here: http://foodandnutritionmagazine.com/quinoa-food-future
Thanks to Eat Well Global and Chef Juan Bernardini for the recipe!
Using apple grater to make apple puree in the car
Last week we went with our 7-month-old baby on an international flight. I wasn’t much worried about how she would do on the airplane. As a dietitian, I was more concerned about how to feed our little girl, especially when staying in a hotel room. We planned a ten-day trip and this was our first time away from home too. I heard that your baby will need couple of days to adjust to the new situation and may even have trouble getting to sleep or eat and may cry more. Fortunately, our baby girl fell asleep after nursing and slept all through the 8 hours flight. I realize here how useful breastfeeding is when on the road! So here it goes my top ten tips:
1. Breastfeed whenever possible. Besides all the nutritional and immunological advantages breast milk has, nursing is handy, clean, convenient and free and has wonderful calming effects on your baby! Remember that airlines don’t provide baby food or formula. TSA allows these liquids and gels like substances in logical amount. Click here http://www.tsa.gov/travelers-guide/traveling-formula-breast-milk-and-juice if you want more details. I packed couple of baby food jars only for the waiting time between flight connections (as I planned to prepare homemade foods at the hotel). Make sure that your baby tried it before and didn’t have a bad reaction. But you don’t need to rely on commercial baby jars, you can just pack a banana (or other soft fruit or vegetable) + a fork + a baby bowl with lid (to smash the banana on the lid)
2. Bring your tools. Depending on the texture you are feeding your child, you will need something to make puree. You don’t need fancy gadgets or even a “baby food maker”. I packed the old apple grater and utensils like fork and knife (remember to put these on your checked bags). If you bring a baby food processor or a hand mixer; just make sure that plug and voltage are compatible! A potato masher or a manual food grinder can be helpful, you pick, just don’t bring the whole kitchen draw!
3. Take advantage of fresh convenient foods. Bananas and apples, avocado, yogurt and baby cereal are handy foods that my baby loved and are no-cook and easy to prepare. If you have a kitchenette or at least a microwave you can cook some vegetables like sweet potatoes and pumpkin and even meats. But if you don’t have the time you can buy, for example, canned pumpkin (do NOT buy “pumpkin pie mix” instead).
4. Be safe. Check out the cleanliness of the place where you buy foods. If you are not sure, stick with hard skin fruits and vegetables, baby food jars, baby cereal or other items brought from home. Wash fruits thoroughly before peeling and jars before opening. Remember to keep cold foods cold. If your baby is on formula and you are traveling overseas you may want to pack enough formula for the whole trip plus an extra amount just in case. Even same formula brands can have a different composition in other countries.
5. When possible, pick a hotel with at least in-room fridge. I choose a hotel with refrigerator and microwave in the room to make food prep easier.
6. Be clean, pack the soap or detergent you use at home. Get ready to clean baby bottles and baby dishes with the same products used at home to prevent bacterial growth and any bad reaction. Microwave sterilizer bags are very handy instead of carrying a sterilizer for baby bottles.
7. Avoid new foods. When having a meal in restaurant, don’t temp yourself and give your baby new foods to try. He or she can have an allergic reaction and mess up your trip! Just wait until you get home and always ask your pediatrician about food introduction.
8. Be lean. I didn’t bring a high chair, I fed my baby over a blanket. You can also do it in the stroller. Don’t forget to pack a few disposable bibs or waterproof easy to clean bibs. If you stay in a hotel, you probably have extra towels and tissues to clean up the mess.
9. Never force your baby to eat. She may experience lots of changes (think that babies suffer more jet lag than adults) and may have a decreased appetite or just eating fewer amounts than usual. I regret that I tried to give my baby “one more last spoon” and she vomited in the car seat. I know you may feel frustrated. But, babies are wise and don’t starve themselves! Just make sure that she wet diapers and that poop once a day (or as usual)
10. Relax and laugh! Take pictures and even take notes in a diary so you can tell a fun story with details to your grown up child in the future.
After all, my baby girl did great and we have a fun time. She is a true traveller, she had better behavior than at home!
If you have other tips or a fun story, please share!
Today I came across with a recent study published in the August issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition saying that drinking several cups of coffee may protect against colorectal cancer. It can cut the risk of having a tumor by between 15 to 25%. Even though it was a large study (almost half a million people), the research has its limitations and I believe that in order to decrease the risk of developing bowel cancer one have first to make sure that is following a healthy diet and making enough exercise. Anyway, it is known today that coffee health benefits outweigh its risks. From cancer prevention to cardiovascular health, from reduced risk of Alzheimer disease to liver health, later studies have changed the way we see coffee and how we recommend it to our clients.
Talking about coffee, I would like to share Argentina's coffee culture. For many Aregntineans the a.m. energy drink to start the day is mate, but for many pthers a cup of java is the morning savior. We use about 1 kilo of coffee per capita per year vs 5 kilos in the U.S. (I think the difference occurs because of the people that choose mate over coffee). Following the European heritage, coffee is widely consumed in Argentina there are more than 11.000 cafes in Buenos Aires. It is typical to stop in a cafe bar and linger over a cup of expresso even for hours! ( contrary to the U.S. rush culture of having a starbucks coffee on the go...). However, the Starbucks landing in Argentina few years ago was a success and many other coffee shops started to sell coffee to go, something relatively new for us.
I wonder how is the coffee culture in other countries...please share! How often do you recommend coffee to your patients? In which situations you don't?
Today, March 14th, is Registered Dietitian (RD) Day in the US. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly the American Dietetic Association) commemorates the RD day to promote the Registered Dietitian as the food and nutrition expert that can help people to live better lives through good nutrition. The first RD day was celebrated in March 2008, while the National Nutrition Month ® (NNM) started in 1973 as a nutrition week and then became a month long in 1980. This year the theme for the NNM was “Get your Plate in Shape”. You can find educational materials (both in English and Spanish) from the NNM here .
The Academy developed these RD Day key messages directed to the public and the media:
Effective this January, formerly American Dietetic Association changed its name to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. It was announced on the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo (FNCE) on September 24, 2011.
Why ADA changed its name? Basically to better represent who we are and what we do. Academy President Sylvia Escott-Stump said that "An academy is a society of learned persons organized to advance science.' This term describes our organization and immediately emphasizes the educational strength of our advice and expertise."
This name change has to do with the evolving role of dietitians focusing more on protecting public nutrition and health. It was felt that the word NUTRITION should be included. "By adding nutrition to our name, we communicate our capacity for translating nutrition science into healthier lifestyles for everyone. Keeping dietetics supports our history as a food and science-based profession" Escott-Stump said.
You may noticed that the word American is gone. It is said that the reasons were:
- Many of the proposed names with the word "American" were already in use (for example: American Nutrition Association, American College of Nutrition, American Society for Nutrition, etc. )
- Going global: Dietetics is a growing global discipline and the Academy has members in more than 70 countries. The Academy is committed to impact on the nutritional health of people all over the world for years and decades to come.
Also, the name of the Journal (JADA) changed to Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the ADA Foundation is now the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation. The logo EatRight remains the same.
In my opinion the new name is more accurate, I like it more and better represent us (specially us that are international members). But is going to take time to get used to...
What do you think about the new name? Share your thoughts!
The Argentinean Asociacion of Dietitians and Nutritionist Dietitians (in Spanish: AADYND - Asociacion Argentina de Dietistas y Nutricionistas Dietistas) is a new member of the International Confederation of Dietetic Associations (ICDA). Congratulations AADYND!!
ICDA nucleates dietetic associations of all over the world and supports them (an their members) to develop international standards of education and practice and to improve our professional image around the globe. Don't miss ICDA website for useful info on international opportunities and get to know the profile of Argentinean dietitians: click here
“Our profession is our bond. Our diversity is our strength. Our needs are our opportunity to work together” (Doris Delerian, RD, President of the ADA - 1996)
I am very excited to introduce you to Eat Well Global and Eat Well Argentina. What’s it all about? Eat Well Global, Inc is a nutritionist-led travel media to help people to eat well not only at home but also when traveling around the globe. It was founded by Julie Meyer, RD, who is a great entrepreneur dietitian, nutrition writer and an awesome person to work with!
So, Eat Well guides are written by local nutritionists and provide travelers (and why not locals) with exclusive information about typical foods, nutrition trends, food labeling, tips for people with food allergies or special dietary needs, markets, restaurants, and even recipes developed by local chefs. As most travelers today make use of electronic devices these guides are presented as applications (apps) for smart phones and tablets. (IPod touch, IPhone and IPad). Much easier to carry than a book!
Like I said, I have the great pleasure to work with Julie in developing Eat Well Argentina. This is an example of how dietitians can work together, even when we are located in opposite hemispheres, to improve people’s health. We worked hard to put together all the contents...but what a wonderful learning experience! Guides from other countries are coming up (like China, Greece, Mexico), so check out www.eatwellglobal.com for your next travel, where you will also find ongoing info on how to eat well across the globe.
I’m happy to announce that Eat Well Argentina is now available at Apple Store: click here. If you know foreign students or business people coming to Argentina or expats living here...pass the voice! They would love to hear where to order healthier delivery foods, how to eat vegetarian in the “beef country”, how to read food labels, how to ask for gluten-free (audio is included in the app), where to shop for food and much more! Also, many Argentineans will benefit from this easy-to-use and truthful information developed by dietitians.
Eat Well and be well!