6 Tips for Cutting Calories This Thanksgiving – Fox News Article

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4500 calories and 229 grams of fat! This article, “6 Tips for Cutting Calories This Thanksgiving” has some great tips for minimizing the Thanksgiving damage to our waistlines. Remember, in all things, abundance is not about how much you have, but how much you enjoy. Here’s to a Happy & Healthy Thanksgiving for you and yours from all of us at Healthy Steps!

–Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Lindsay




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Healthy Steps Holiday Hour 2016

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Back On Track Class – January 2016

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Nutritionist Lindsay’s Corner – Health Risks of Prediabetes Article

Screen Shot 2015-10-19 at 10.10.06 AMPrediabetes: an Elephant in the Room” written by US News is a great article which describes the health risks of prediabetes and how to know if you’re at risk for it (most people don’t know they even have it!). As the article explains, meeting with a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist who specializes in weight loss and low-glycemic healthy eating is the best way to take charge of your health and prevent prediabetes or full blown diabetes. I’d love to meet with you one-on-one at Healthy Steps to do just that!

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Lindsay

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Healthy Steps Gift Cards

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Give the gift of health to your loved ones this holiday season. HEALTHY STEPS GIFT CARDS are available in our office. Call for more details (707-546-7900).

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Nutritionist Lindsay’s Corner – Cholesterol, Triglycerides, and Disease Risk: the Scientific Breakthroughs You Haven’t Heard Enough About

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The 1977 Dietary Guidelines for the United States, aiming to get a handle on the increase in heart disease deaths in this country, for the first time recommended Americans limit their intake of fat, saturated fat, and dietary cholesterol.  Americans set out to follow these recommendations, and as a nation, we successfully decreased our intake of all three. Unfortunately, the prevalence of cardiovascular disease and diabetes have only increased since then.  What went wrong? To understand, we need first to review the most current science on cholesterol and triglycerides, the lipids found in our blood.
Many of us have heard about “good” cholesterol (HDL) and “bad” cholesterol (LDL). We may even be aware that the ratio of these two components is even more important than our total cholesterol level. Why? The concern with blood cholesterol is when it contributes to atherosclerosis–the hardening and narrowing of the arteries due to build of cholesterol plaque inside them.
HDL, or High-Density Lipoprotein, is good because it acts like a trash collector, picking up free floating cholesterol in the blood stream. The more trash collectors, the cleaner the streets. So we want HDL levels high, because it lowers atherosclerosis plaque buildup. Low-fat diets, like those recommended in the 1977 Dietary Guidelines, actually lower HDL levels. Exercise and a diet with a moderate intake of healthy fats (like those recommended in our program) raise HDL levels.
LDL, or Low-Density Lipoprotein, has been traditionally considered “bad.” Recent research however, has illuminated the fact that there are four different types of LDL, all with varying impacts on disease: Large (Fluffy) LDL, Medium, Small, and Very Small LDL. It turns out the Large LDL is benign; it neither helps nor hinders. The smaller, denser forms of LDL, however, are linked to a three-fold increased risk of heart disease. It is important to note that at this time, the blood tests available to the public do not distinguish between the different types of LDL. However, research has linked different dietary patterns with different types of LDL: we know that intake of saturated fat stimulates Large LDL (which is benign, remember),  while intake of high glycemic carbohydrates is implicated in the creation of the smaller LDL. This is just one more reason we focus on education around glycemic load in our nutrition counseling at Healthy Steps.
What about dietary cholesterol intake and blood cholesterol levels? There is no evidence the former impacts the latter. In fact, the 2015 Dietary Guidelines acknowledged this lack of evidence and removed the recommendation to limit dietary intake of cholesterol.
Triglycerides don’t get quite as much press as cholesterol, but they are just as important to understand. Triglycerides are fats in the blood stream; they contribute to atherosclerosis, and elevate heart disease risk. They are also a sign of insulin resistance and elevated risk of diabetes. Excess consumption of high glycemic carbohydrates, trans fats, calories or alcohol, as well as being sedentary, all increase blood triglyceride levels.
Reviewing the most recent findings on cholesterol, triglycerides, and the lifestyle choices that impact them, we see where the 1977 guidelines went wrong. Americans, in their vigor to follow the new recommendations, replaced fat calories with refined carbohydrates (remember the bottom of the food pyramid?) and sugar (all those low-fat products we were buying had to be made palatable somehow). We actually increased our total calorie intake as well, likely because fat provides long-term satiety, and as we cut back, we got hungrier. At Healthy Steps we specialize in helping individuals get back to eating real, whole foods, with the right balance of protein, healthy fats, and low glycemic carbohydrates so you can lower your risk of disease as you lose weight.
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“The Link Between Vitamin C and Optimal Immunity” – Article


Life Extension Magazine came out with an article in their November 2015 issue regarding the importance of Vitamin C and its linkage to optimal immunity (Full Article HERE).

Chad Roberson wrote, while vitamin C helps maintain tissue and speed wound healing, an overlooked strength is its impact on boosting immune function. As you will read in this article, people with common diseases have lower vitamin C blood levels than healthy individuals.

With the growing body of data about the role that plant-based nutrients play in healthy aging, we sometimes forget about how much documentation exists in support of vitamin C, a nutrient found in small concentrations in certain plant foods.

New evidence is corroborating what scientists long ago advocated relating to the need for humans to maintain optimal vitamin C status.

The Importance Of Vitamin C

Vitamin C deficiency has been associated with frequency and duration of colds, along with immune system defects. While colds aren’t usually dangerous in themselves, they can lead to pneumonia and other respiratory diseases, especially for aging individuals. Colds can be an early indicator of gaps in immune function that could leave one vulnerable to a cascade of serious infections.

A deficiency of vitamin C broadly affects the various key aspects of immune function, which include the innate system we are born with, the adaptive system that develops from infancy to young adulthood, the cells that kill invaders, the cells that coordinate those attacks, and even the production of antibodies that fight known infections.

As a result of vitamin C’s wide-ranging impact on the immune system, a deficiency could leave us vulnerable to infections. A weakened immune system caused by low vitamin C levels can make any infection more serious. This danger becomes more ominous in older adults, in whom the phenomenon of immunosenescence (the aging of the immune system) already heightens risk.

There are multiple causes of insufficient vitamin C. Aging is one major cause of lowered vitamin C levels. The concentration of vitamin C in immune cells decreases with age, partly the result of an increasingly oxidative environment that consumes vitamin C. This can lead to damage to DNA, proteins, and fat molecules needed for normal immune function.

Stress is another major trigger for reducing vitamin C levels, leaving the affected individuals vulnerable to infection at precisely the time that stronger immune support is needed.

In some remarkable human findings, low vitamin C blood levels have been associated with a number of common human diseases.

One of the most important functions of vitamin C is to support and energize the body’s immune system. Immune cells have active vitamin C transporter molecules embedded in their membranes that actively pump the vitamin into the cells when more vitamin C is required.

For example, during times of inflammation or infection, those transporters ramp up their activity to provide sufficient vitamin C to the cells’ inner workings, causing cells to attain levels up to 100-fold that of the plasma level. This is why blood levels of vitamin C drop during times of disease or infection.

This can create a potentially vicious cycle in which, just when you need extra vitamin C, your body’s stores are depleted. This also makes it especially important to increase one’s intake of vitamin C when sick.

The content of vitamin C within immune cells is closely related to those cells’ activity, especially in the case of specific cells that engulf and destroy infecting organisms (phagocytes) and of those that recruit, organize, and direct other immune cells (T-lymphocytes).

Fortunately, you can improve your immune system’s function by supplementing with vitamin C. The recommended daily allowance of vitamin C is around 90 mg per day. For optimal immune function, many experts now recommend supplementing with 1 gram (1,000 mg) of vitamin C daily in addition to a diet rich in fruits and vegetables.




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Join our team for UNITED WE STEP

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Nutritionist Lindsay’s Corner – Prevalence and Trends of Diabetes

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In September 2015 the Journal of the American Medical Association’s published online the results of a nation-wide study of the prevalence and trends of diabetes over the past quarter century. Not surprisingly, the prevalence of diabetes has skyrocketed in the last two decades. What was surprising, to me anyway, was the finding that about one-third of individuals who have diabetes are undiagnosed. They are walking around with blood sugar levels well within the diabetic range, but they have no idea! Equally startling, in 2012, the last year evaluated in the survey, 38% of the population had blood sugars that qualified for the “prediabetes” diagnosis. About 70% of individuals with prediabetes go on to develop full blown type II diabetes, but dietary and other lifestyle interventions are very effective at averting this development.  Unfortunately, according to the CDC, nearly 90% of prediabetics don’t know they have it. 

A hemoglobin A1c level of 6.5% or greater, a fasting plasma glucose level of 126 mg/dL or higher, or a 2-hour plasma glucose of 200 mg/dL indicates diabetes. Prediabetes is defined as a hemoglobin A1c level between 5.7-6.4%, a fasting plasma glucose level between 100-125mg/dL, or a 2-hour plasma glucose between 140-199mg/dL. Ask your doctor to help you interpret your blood glucose lab results, and get a blood glucose lab test every one to two years to “catch” early blood sugar issues. 
One of my favorite parts about working at Healthy Steps is how cutting edge our nutritional approach to weight loss and health is. I sincerely believe there is no better place in Sonoma County to learn how to eat to protect and manage your blood sugars!  We’d love the opportunity to work with you one-on-one to develop a personalized eating and exercise plan to get your on the path to your best health. 
-Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Lindsay
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Crockpot Chicken Broth – Cooking Light

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Click HERE for the video. 

Broth is a mineral rich infusion made by boiling bones of healthy animals with vegetables, herbs and spices. Making it from scratch has an unparalleled flavor to store bought and is a powerful health tonic that you can easily add to your family’s diet.

Besides it’s delicious taste and culinary uses, broth is an excellent source of minerals (calcium, magnesium, phosphorus) and is also known to boost the immune system and improve digestion.

Broth can be made from the bones of beef, bison, lamb, poultry, or fish, and various vegetables and spices are often added.


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