Archive for category: Food For Thought


Go Nuts for Nuts!

Nuts have long been hailed as beneficial to your health.  Despite the recent rise in nut allergies and stricter regulations in schools and public places, there are many who are able to continue to consume nuts at home and in the work place.   The following article by The Daily Meal discusses the best nuts for your health and the benefits you can reap from indulging in these tasty snacks!


The Daily Meal: The Best Nuts For Your Health


Reduce Your Risk: Eat Breakfast

It is said that “breakfast is the most important meal of the day,” as it helps to wake us, provides fuel throughout the day, and can boost metabolism and energy, but do you realize how truly important this first meal may be?  Researchers have found a link which shows that, especially in men, skipping breakfast on a regular basis can increase the risk of heart attacks.  Why?  Because skipping breakfast can lead to higher cholesterol, higher blood pressure and obesity.  In an article from CBC News Health, the study which shows this important link is discussed.  Is it time for you to change your eating habits and ensure you are starting your day properly?


CBC News: Skipping breakfast may increase heart attack risk



Juicing Vs. Blending

Health professionals are increasingly recommending juices and smoothies as a great way to increase your fruit and vegetable intake and to help you increase your overall health and wellness.  These “power” beverages can help to boost energy, are more eco-friendly and help to ensure you are getting the proper nutrients from your diet without the need for costly supplements.  The following info graphic from discusses the differences between juicing and blending so you can find the method that works best for your budget, and nutritional needs.  Check it out and find out which way works best for you!


Mind Body Green: Juicing vs. Blending


Give Yourself a Boost

Do you ever find yourself struggling to get out of bed in the morning?  Or hitting a wall in the mid-afternoon needing a pick me up?  Before you rush to your local coffee shop for quick caffeine boost, try utilizing some natural energy boosters.  The following article from Alive Magazine provides tips on how to boost your energy naturally and effectively for the long run so you can avoid that short term rush from your additional cup of Joe.


Alive Magazine: 10 Energy Boosters


The Best Picks From Your Local Farmer’s Market

Summer has officially begun and fresh fruits and vegetables are a plenty.  Why not join the “eat local” food movement!  A great way to spend a summer day is to visit a local farm or farmers market and take in some of the healthy fresh items the season has to offer.  The following article from will help you decide the best things to purchase from your local farmers market. The Healthiest Farmers Market Food Picks


How Do You Get Your 8 Glasses A Day?

There are many new products that can help you get your 8 glasses per day, however, many are full of sugars, sodium and unnecessary calories.  Are you making the right choices?  This interesting article by Rodale Wellness discusses the new trend in “fancy” fortified water beverages and helps you decide which are worth the extra money and which are just empty calories.

Rodale Wellness: 10 “Fancy” Waters You Shouldn’t Drink


Eat Well, Live Well With Spinal Cord Injury


A new book called “Eat Well, Live Well with Spinal Cord Injuries“, written by a nutritionist with a spinal cord injury and an Occupational Therapist specializing in neurological disorders, discusses the connection between diet and spinal cord injury.  Check out this article explaining how a proper diet can help to reduce complications from spinal cord injury and improve overall health.


Eat Well Live Well with Spinal Cord Injury– The Star


Eat For Healthy Bones

It has long been understood that bone health becomes increasingly important as you age – especially for women.  It is also known that the functional impacts of a broken bone (reduced self-care, productivity and leisure) can be massive.  The role of calcium is well known, but what other factors contribute to bone health?  Health magazine has created a list of eleven foods that maximize the strength of your bones.  Check this out and see if you can up your consumption of bone health promoting nutrients…

Health Magazine– 11 Foods For Healthy Bones


Weight Management and Disability – You can’t eat what you don’t buy…

Julie Entwistle, MBA, BHSc (OT), BSc (Health / Gerontology)

I find that while many of my clients initially lose weight following trauma (hospital food diet); eventually the net impact of a disability is often weight gain.  This is often the result of many factors – most interacting to make the solution difficult to isolate.  Medication side-effects, altered routines, reactive eating, friends and family that provide unhealthy sympathy foods, increased use of fast food because preparing meals is difficult, inactivity, depression, and even hormonal and physiological changes to the body as a result of the trauma.

But we do know that 70% of weight management is diet and assuming this is true, then the solution to weight management should be simple – you can’t eat it if you don’t buy it.  Purchasing unhealthy food is the first step to a weight problem.  And weight problems in disabled people are exponential.  Everything becomes harder – transfers, walking, completion of daily tasks, care giving, and many pieces of equipment have weight limits that when exceeded result in equipment failure.

What is even more problematic is the role of the care giver in the maintenance of weight in the person they are caring for.  When people cannot shop for food and cannot cook, then helping them to maintain weight becomes the job of the caregiver.  Just buy and prepare healthy foods – perhaps food prescribed by a nutritionist or dietician.  However, often caregivers rely on the disabled person to dictate the food choices but if people are emotionally eating, or eating out of boredom, then the caregiver cannot always rely on the individual to make the best decisions.  Often raising awareness about healthy eating starts with asking people to track what and when they are eating and drinking.  Then, problems can be identified and a list of doable solutions can be developed.

In one instance, in helping a client with weight loss as a functional goal, we discovered through tracking that she was barely eating breakfast and lunch but was consuming all of her calories from 5-10pm.  We made the goal that, over time, she would consume breakfast, lunch, two snacks and dinner, and would stop eating after 7pm.  Within a few short months she lost 30 pounds and this greatly improved her mobility and tolerances for activity.  Another client discovered through tracking that he was consuming far too many large bottles of pop a day.  By changing his large bottle to a smaller one, and eventually to only one pop per day and the rest water, he was able to drop 20 pounds.  In both cases, the problems, solutions, and commitment to change were made by my clients (with my guidance and support), making the results far more meaningful and lasting.  Further, the client was shown a framework for how to check and modify eating habits should they deteriorate again in the future.