April 1, 2020
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– Hi, it’s Kristen here
at UT Southwestern, and I’m excited to be here
today with Dr. Lona Sandon to talk about what should
be on your plate in 2019. So Dr. Sandon is Director of the Master of Clinical
Nutrition Program, or the Clinical Nutrition
Coordinated Program, here at the UT Southwestern
School of Health Professions, and she’s also has more
than 20 years’ experience of leading fitness and wellness classes. And we’re super excited to have her. Welcome. – Thank you. – This should be a lot of fun. We got a lot of questions. We had some that were submitted earlier. Just make sure you like and
you share the conversation. We wanna spread as wide as we can, and just leave your questions
in the comments field. So we’ll start with one
that we got in advance, and it deals with New Year’s resolutions. You know, if somebody wants
to make a resolution this year to eat better, what are
some ways to go about that? – Well, Kristen, I have three tips. One, be realistic, be sustainable, and focus on the positive. By realistic, I mean set
goals and resolutions that you know you can achieve. So instead of swearing
off all sugar completely, how about set a goal to
just reduce your sugar, maybe by having a few
less desserts each week. And by sustainable, I mean choose goals that you can keep all year long. Something that doesn’t require
you to have to plan a lot, or go to special grocery
stores or things like that. Something that you can
do over and over again. And then focus on the positive. So look at how you can put good healthy foods into your diet. When you focus more on positive changes, things that make you feel good, it’s easier to do and stick
with that new behavior than when you’re focusing on the negative and thinking about things that you might be feeling deprived of. – Gotcha, so big one, be realistic. – Be realistic, sustainable,
and focus on the positive. – Okay, good advice to get us started. So we’ve had lots of
other questions come in, and one of these, you know,
we talk a lot about diabetes, and Genie reached out, and
said, “My husband is diabetic,” and she’s admits to
not being a great cook. That sounds like me. And her question is what should somebody who’s diabetic be eating that
wouldn’t negatively affect their blood sugar but would
help them lose weight. – Well first of all, I wanna say you don’t have to be a superstar chef to put a healthy meal on the table or nutritious meal on the table. Second, with something like diabetes, I would say go back to your physician and ask your physician for a referral to a registered dietician so
you can get very specific, individualized advice
for what their needs are. But I can give you some general advice in terms of how to manage your diabetes by just some basic eating
principles on a day to day basis. One of those pieces of advice
is to balance your meals. So by balanced meals, I
mean have some protein, some healthy carbohydrate, and then add non-starchy
vegetables to the meal to make up the rest of the meal. So that you have protein and
carbohydrate paired together will help to manage
those blood sugar levels. So that’s one tip that you can do. The other thing you can do
is manage your portion sizes. So anytime you’re having portion sizes that are larger than what you need, you’re setting yourself up
for higher blood sugar levels. So keeping those portion sizes in check. And if you’re someone, maybe
she’s just cooking meals for just her and her husband, so sometimes it’s harder
to cook smaller recipes, but one of the things you can do to help those keep portion sizes in check is to take advantage of
some of these pre-prepped, pre-portioned items that are now available in the grocery store. So now in most grocery stores
you can find meats or fish that are already pre-cut and pre-seasoned, and they usually come in
packages of two or four servings. Take ’em home, put ’em in the pan. There’s your lean protein to
go with your balanced meal. The other thing to do is simply replace high sugar foods
with lower sugar options. So maybe instead of
doing the chocolate cake, you might have a bowl of fresh raspberries with just a little bit
of chocolate syrup sauce drizzled on top. – So you still get some chocolate. – You still get some, but you’re getting that healthy high fiber fruit instead that will help manage your blood sugar. – Good to know. Really great question, Genie. Thanks for asking. So here’s, we’ve got a
whole lot more coming in. This is great. Keep ’em coming. Here’s a first one from Carter. And we could’ve joked
on this a little bit, but what are your
thoughts on the keto diet? – Well the keto diet can
be highly restrictive, especially if you’re doing it
the way it’s intended to do. So a keto diet is in a largely a protein, high-fat based diet. So you can be getting a lot of excess fat that is not necessarily heart healthy. And then you’re cutting out
essential vitamins and minerals that are found in other food
sources such as dairy foods, whole grains, and some of
your starchy vegetables that offer us a lot of
nutritional benefit. So you could be coming up short
on a lot of good nutrition. One of those keys nutrients is calcium. So we know a lot of people are already at risk for osteoporosis
and poor bone health. So when you go on keto diets or other fad diets that
cut out dairy foods, you could be setting yourself up for greater risk of
osteoporosis and bone fractures. – Okay. So maybe shy away from that. – Yes. – Okay Alright, so here’s a different
question from Sherleen. And this is interesting because she says, “A recent UT Southwestern news release “showed how inorganic phosphate can affect “your activity levels and maybe “make you more of a couch potato.” And her question is, “How
can we consume less of that?” – So inorganic phosphates
are actually found in a lot of our pre-prepared,
pre-packaged foods. They’re typically food additives
like disodium phosphate you’ll find in the ingredients list on a lot of pre-prepared,
pre-packaged foods. And so how do you shy away from that? Well, you eat less of those. And you get back to a whole food diet. Because our organic phosphates are found in our whole natural
foods, our dairy food, our fresh meats and fish, not the deli meats with the additives, but the fresh ones that come
from the butcher counter. And then, of course, whole
grains, fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables have
really low phosphorous in them altogether, but
whole grains can have phosphorous in them, but
it’s the organic form. So getting back to a whole food diet, getting away from those pre-prepared items that have the additives. And sodas. So sodas are a big culprit
of inorganic phosphates. Or any kind of colored beverages
you might find out there, whether it’s orange
coloring or yellow coloring. Those are likely to have inorganic
phosphates added to them. – Good question. And I love how you tied in the research. Here’s a different question we have. “Are there certain vitamins or supplements “that you recommend taking daily?” – Again, this is a very individual issue as to what someone might
need to take extra. So I would ask your doctor for a referral to a registered dietician or
ask the doctor themselves, is your health condition
something that might benefit from having additional
vitamins and minerals? For example, maybe you are
diagnosed with osteopenia, and so in that case, taking
a calcium and vitamin D supplement every day could
be beneficial for you. Or maybe you have high cholesterol levels and high triglyceride
levels, so maybe taking a fish oil capsule would
be of benefit for you. There’s no one blanket recommendation. It should really be evaluated
on an individual basis. – Alright, great question. Definitely, so contact your physician and see what they recommend
based on your personal – – And get a referral to
a registered dietician to really evaluate what you’re taking in in your diet already to see. Do you really need additional calcium? Do you really need
additional B12 or vitamin D, or whatever it might be
depending on your age and maybe your health condition. You could benefit from
some of those supplements. – Alright. Good to know. So here’s a question from Ellen, and I hear people talking
about this all the time. And she asked would you
recommend intermittent fasting? I hear people do that all the time. Is it a good idea? – So there’s all sorts of rules
around intermittent fasting, and depending on which
intermittent fasting book or article you read,
you may do two days on, three days off, or whatever. So they can be highly variable. What the research shows is really kind of the best intermittent fasting is to fast overnight for about 12 hours. So stop eating at six. Don’t eat again until 6:00 a.m. Our body does need a break from food. We are not intended to
constantly have food coming in. Like many of us kind of do because we have so much easy access to food all day long. And so really the best
thing that the research really supports at this time
is that 12 hour overnight fast. And we see better outcomes in terms of cholesterol and triglyceride levels, controlling blood sugar,
people with insulin resistance and type two diabetes might do better with that 12 hour fast overnight. So there are some health benefits to it. – Great. Good question, Ellen. So we have a stream of questions coming. This is great. Keep them coming. Here’s one from Kevin, and
this is kind of a funny one. “Despite numerous books and wives’ tales “does chicken soup have any
medicinal value toward healing?” – Well (laughs) it actually just might. One, it’s just good for the
mental aspect of healing. It’s comfort. It makes you feel better when
you’re not feeling so well, and you’re little bit under the weather. But funny enough, there actually
are a few studies out there looking at chicken soup
as a remedy for colds. And it appears to, you know, do something. Just exactly what it’s
doing, we don’t know. Could it be an amino acid
that’s in the chicken broth? Who knows? But there’s a few, a handful of studies that have actually evaluated this and does show some benefit to perhaps having some chicken
soup when you’re feeling a little under the weather. And if it doesn’t do anything physically, it might do something mentally, and that just makes
you feel better anyway. – Good question, Kevin. We’re glad you joined us today. Here’s a question from Crystal, and this is another
pretty common question. But her, it is “Are
nutritional needs different “for people over 50?” – And the answer is yes. So yes. As we age, we do require
additional nutrients of specific nutrients. Calcium is one of those. Vitamin D is one of those. And vitamin B12 is another one. There is also a good body of research demonstrating that protein needs may go up or be increased
for people over 50 as well, to help maintain lean
muscle mass over time. – Okay. Good question, Crystal. Here’s, this is taking
a different approach, and I think it’s getting toward
your wellness background. And it’s “do you have any health apps, “such as MyFitnessPal or others out there, “that you’d recommend
either to count calories “or store health data?” – So, oh gosh, there’s a ton of apps out there to choose from. One program that I’m familiar
with is called MyNetDiary. And so that helps you
track your food intake. FitnessPal is probably
one of the most popular that is out there that I
see a lot of people use. Livestrong also has an
app that seems to be pretty popular among folks as well. And then there’s online, My Food Record is another
one that I’ve seen. – Okay. – That helps you evaluate
your food intake. – Okay, and we’ll go
through after the chat and include links to some of
these, if we can find them. And that’s a really great question. A lot of people trying to do things on their phone and online. Makes sense. Alright, good question. So we’ve got more in here. Veganism. Here’s a question about that. “Are there any health concerns
that come with a vegan diet?” – So there are some health concerns that come with a vegan diet. And again, it goes back to
possible nutrient deficiencies that can occur with a vegan diet. So when you’re choosing vegan, it is completely non-animal
based versus vegetarian. Vegetarians may still eat
some animal based products such as eggs or fish or milk and cheese. When you’re going straight
vegan, you cut out those foods. So again you can come up short on B12s. So it’s hard to get B12 on a vegan diet. And so that can affect your ability to utilize your nutrients, particularly the carbohydrates
that you take in. And so I do recommend, those
people who are following a very strict vegan diet,
that they might want to take a B12 supplement,
regardless of their age. Also because you cut out dairy sources, you’re coming up short on calcium and vitamin D on a vegan diet. It’s very hard to eat
enough broccoli (laughs) to get a thousand to 12 hundred milligrams of absorbable broccoli every day. – Yes, it is. – It’s tough to get enough
calcium on a vegan diet. So again, calcium and
vitamin D supplements might be something someone who’s following a vegan diet would want to try. If they’re consuming something
like soy milk or almond milk or some of the other plant
alternative type milks, they want to make sure they’re calcium and vitamin D fortified. – Gotcha. Okay, well this is related. There was a question that came in just after that one from Toni, asking specifically,
“Will vegans become sick “if they don’t take B12?” – Well, they could, yes. They potentially could
have some deficiencies and experience some side effects, particularly low energy levels is what they might experience. You might also see someone
with B12 deficiencies, their nails may become – – Brittle? – Deformed or brittle and kind of rigid, and that would indicate a deficiency. So, yes there could be
potential health problems by having a B12 deficiency. – Okay. A good question, Toni. So, different question from Ellen, and we’re getting to
vegetables specifically. And she wants to know
if there’s a difference in terms of getting your nutrients from eating raw vegetables
or blending them. – So you might actually get more nutrients from a blended vegetable
than a raw vegetable. And the reason is, when
you take a vegetable, let’s use broccoli for example, and you blend it up, you
break down those cell walls. And it’s very similar
to chewing the broccoli. So you really don’t need to blend it. You can just chew it really well. – Yeah. – But you break down
some of those cell walls, and it’s easier for
your body to then absorb the nutrients out of the
cells of the broccoli. You can also get more
nutrients out of vegetables if you cook them a little bit. You know, you don’t need
to cook them to mush, if you just – – Many of our grandparents did. – You just heat them
gently or steam them gently in the microwave for a minute or two. And that’s enough, again, to break down those plant cell walls to make it a little bit easier on
digestion in the body. And there’s even some
vegetables and even fruits that, when you heat them, it
unlocks the potential of other vitamins and minerals. So lycopene is a prime example of that. It’s an antioxidant
that’s found in tomatoes. You get more lycopene out
of tomato sauce than you do a whole tomato because of the
cooking and heating process. – I love raw tomatoes. – Raw tomatoes are great. I’m not saying you shouldn’t eat them. But, you know, have your
raw tomato on your salad, put some good marinara on your spaghetti. – Great, that’s a deal. Great question. Thanks for bringing that up, Ellen. Here’s a different question. This gets, we’re kind of
going all over the place. But this is from Sherleen, and gets to fit your fitness background. “What are your thoughts on high-intensity “or circuit style workout classes? “Can you get similar results from regular, “lower impact exercises?” – Well, high-intensity
interval type training is gonna give you your
most bang for your buck if you can do it. So again, it comes back to what is your functional ability
and how fit are you? How hard can you go? And I would say you
shouldn’t do high-intensity interval training every single day. You’re gonna wear the body out. It’s gonna be hard for
your body to recover. And so you do want to mix it up. So maybe you do high interval training two or three times a week,
and on those other days you do something more low intensity or moderate intensity that is just steady-state exercise to mix it up. So you allow for proper muscle recovery in between those high intense workouts. – Okay, good to know. Great question, Sherleen. Here’s one from Revthi, and I apologize if I mispronounced your name,
and it’s a great question. “Is cooking vegetables on high heat, “does that reduce or kill the nutrients?” – If you keep ’em
extended in the high heat for a long time, yes
you can do some damage to the nutrients. Antioxidants found in vegetables
are highly heat sensitive. And so, again, you don’t
need a long cooking time with vegetables, you just
need short exposure to heat. Stir-frying is a good example. If you’re doing stir-fry correctly, which I never really do (laughs), you are supposed to have
the pan on a very high heat, there’s a wok on a very high heat so that the vegetables go in, and you constantly stir so
that they’re not sitting on the heat being damaged, but they’re heating up just enough to make them a little bit soft. And that’s how you want
to do your vegetables. If you saute, then those vegetables are a little bit longer in the pan, and you might be getting more damage to some of those heat
sensitive antioxidants. – Okay. So doing stir-fry the right way
sounds like the best option? – Stir-fry the right way or microwaving for one or two minutes,
where you’re just steaming. Where the heat is from
the steam of the water rather than cooking high
heat with the vegetables sitting against the heat of the pan for an extended period of time. – Gotcha. Great question. Thanks for bringing that up. And we’re about 20 minutes
into our chat already, so we don’t have a lot of time left. We’ll take as many more questions
as we can get to though. Here’s a great question from Sophia. And we haven’t touched on this yet, but “what are your
thoughts on the Paleo diet, “and would you recommend it for kids?” – So the Paleo diet can be a healthy diet. Again it depends on whose
Paleo rules you are following. So if you go out and start
looking for information on a Paleo diet, you’re gonna find a lot of conflicting information actually. So some Paleo diets will tell you to steer completely away
from grains and legumes. Others will allow some of
that, and some will disallow calcium or milk type foods on the diet. But you can make the
Paleo diet a relatively healthy diet or a health promoting diet. It promotes lean meats,
which is good for anybody. It promotes increased
intake of vegetables, which is good for anybody
and allows for fruit. But make sure you’re
getting a source of calcium and some whole grains for added
fiber into the diet as well. – What about the kids? Does it matter for children? Is it a good idea? – With kids, it could be a
healthy diet for kids as well. You just need to make sure they
are getting enough calories. So kids need twice as many calories per pound of body weight,
just about, than an adult. And so you need to make sure they’re getting enough calories when you’re doing some
kind of meal pattern that may be more restrictive
than other meal patterns. Kids are growing, so they
need adequate protein. Their bones are building, so they need all the nutrients that
bones need for building, and that’s protein, that’s calcium, that’s vitamin D, that’s vitamin K, that’s magnesium, it’s
things that are found in all of our whole foods. That’s why we recommend going back to kind of that basic
four food group with kids. – Okay. Good question, Sophia. Thanks for bringing it up. Looks like somebody’s
having some audio issues. We’re working on it, hopefully. You might try turning up your speaker. We have two questions
that we have time for. Here’s one of the last ones. There’s one from, I’m
not sure who this is. I can’t read their name. I apologize. So they’ve said that the
World Health Organization has classified processed
meat as a carcinogen. “Should we really never
eat bacon and deli meats?” – (sigh) Well, bacon (laughs). I hate to say never eat bacon cuz people will be really mad at me. – Yeah. – But yes, these are foods
that I would classify as sometimes foods not everyday foods. So there’s a lot of
nitrates and other additives found oftentimes in these foods that do appear to increase
some cancer risks, particularly colon cancer risk. So I wouldn’t say you can never eat bacon, but this is something that,
maybe not an every day food. Maybe once a week. – I think you just broke
my children’s hearts. They love bacon. They would eat bacon every day. – So would my niece. She can eat a pound of bacon in no time. – That’s impressive. Alright, we’re running out of time, and here’s a question from Christy. And we talked about how to cook
vegetables a little bit ago. Her question is, “Is roasting vegetables “an okay method for nutritional value?” – Yes, roasting is another option. Again, roasting is typically done at a relatively low
temperature in the oven. And so you’re not, you know, just burning the heck out of your vegetables. You’re heating them slowly, and so it does preserve
some of the nutrient value of your vegetables when
you roast them that way. It also, you know, puts
a little sear on them and adds to the flavor. – Okay. Good question, Christy. So last question, I’m
going to take the liberty, and it’s my question. Are there certain foods that people should be eating every day? – All of the good ones. No (laughs), again it’s hard to recommend just specific foods. No single food is a super food that’s gonna cure
everything for your health. So you do want to make sure you’re getting something from the whole grain group, something from the lean protein group, something from the dairy, and so on. If I just look at my own diet, or what are some key foods that I tend to eat on a daily basis? It’s oatmeal, whole wheat bread, olive oil is always almost on something on the daily menu, peanut butter, walnuts. I have an apple just
about every single day. So again it’s going back to
making whole foods the basis of our meal patterns
on a day-to-day level. – That’s very helpful. And I changed my mind. We’re gonna take this one more question that came in from Ellen, and
we have a couple minutes. So this is from Ellen, and
without saying a brand, but what salad dressing
would you recommend for a healthy salad? – I would recommend something that is olive oil and vinegar based so that you’re getting the benefits of the heart healthy
oil from the olive oil. And then the vinegar adds
flavor without adding fat. And then whatever spices or
flavorings you want in that. So whether that be something
like a raspberry vinaigrette or more of an Italian
vinaigrette, you know, that’s up to personal choice. But going with some type of vinaigrette, olive oil and vinegar based
dressing, is my recommendation. They also tend to be lower in salt than your creamy based dressings. – Okay. Good question, Ellen. I think that’s a great way to wrap up our chat because we’re all out of time. I want to thank everybody for joining us. Definitely thank Dr.
Sandon for joining us. And don’t forget, this chat
will be available here. We’ll also share it on our
YouTube channel later today. So if you have friends
that aren’t on Facebook that you think might want to watch it, share it from that platform. And in the meantime, we really appreciate all of your time today, and hope you have a wonderful weekend.

Randall Smitham