Blog: News Bites and Feeds
July 12th, 2016 |

People, not Patients

The medical profession has a tough task in trying to combat obesity. It’s not simple. It’s costly and it’s frustrating.

As a nutritionist, I’m personally frustrated. We need to be more creative in our approach. We need to champion smart people and organizations to work with people (not patients) to move in the right direction. We need to listen more. Talk less. We also need to work as teams. Straightforward communication is key.

Recently a client shared a handout of directions from his new doctor about what he NEEDED TO DO to lose weight. It was a list of high calorie foods to be avoided at all costs. Or he’d fail.

The list was a slash and burn of foods, many of them nutrient-dense and real foods that any trained nutrition professional would include in daily in a sound weight loss plan. It also included one line about how it was ok to have artificial sweeteners (really?, that’s not even food, but go ahead, have all you want).

It was a typed list, New Times Roman font, totally uninspiring and didactic, like the kind of handout you get for a colonoscopy prep. Everyone gets the same one. You either succeed or fail. Follow the list. FOLLOW THE LIST. See you in six months.

Here’s the thing that really gets me. This client has been doing incredibly well with his weight loss and lifestyle goals. We’ve been working together weekly through video sessions. We check in about what’s going well and what’s not. We set goals, together, but mostly he does the goal setting and I give him advice to balance it all out. We talk about a new food to try each week. Real food. Real cooking. Recipes. Walking. Shooting a few hoops. Doing things he enjoys. Things he’s never done before. Things he never thought he could do before.

Did the doctor ask him about that? Did he ask him about his success? How he felt? No, just treated him as another number and handed him the paper of what he must do.

This simple piece of paper just reduced 11 months of our hard work to a second guess. So, yeah, I’m frustrated.

We can do better. We must do better. Let’s get back to listening more and fostering real relationships, inspiring ones. That’s how we’ll make changes that last a lifetime.

November 2nd, 2015 |

“I Know What To Do, I Just Don’t Do It”

We talk about prevention and lifestyle change, but what does it actually entail?

Prevention means eating healthfully, exercising, getting quality sleep, decreasing stress, enjoying meaningful relationships and managing finances. These all deserve a slice of the wellness pie and are known to be cost-effective strategies for reducing our chances of getting chronic disease or the progression of these burdensome conditions. We know this much.

Our healthcare system can’t support the sickcare model any longer. It’s time to stop talking about prevention. We need to do something. Something large scale, innovative and sustainable. And, we need to do it right now. (more…)

October 19th, 2015 |


It’s been a hectic stretch. I recently moved my life to New York City after calling Boston home for the past 19 years. I also co-authored a cookbook called Real Fit Kitchen that hit bookstores in the beginning of October. None of this was part of my plan about a year ago. When it rains, it really pours and often it’s not predictable. You have no choice but to go with it. Get wet. Right now, I’m soaked.

Transition is equal parts exhilarating and challenging. You forget how much you take for granted at times like these. Simple things such as knowing how to get around town without glancing at a map every 3 minutes or asking a surly-looking stranger for help.

Transition begs for mindfulness. I notice the things that I probably won’t notice after a few more months. The colorful subway tiles. The hustle of fashion-forward energetic teenagers and well-heeled business people as they rush off to school and work. The independence and resolve of elderly as they navigate the NYC streets with confidence at their own pace. The security guards at the new office. The bounty of fruits, figs, kebabs, fried chicken feet (yes), handbags, pipes and old books at the hands of street vendors. I have a set of fresh eyes. (more…)

August 6th, 2015 |

5 Ingredients For Athletes To Try & Why

I was recently asked by a popular magazine to list five ingredients that are particularly beneficial to athletes. While it was tough to narrow down, here are my picks:

1. Beets. Fresh beets are an athlete’s natural medicine, especially when juiced and consumed as a concentrated drink before exercise. Why? Beets are rich in nitrates. Beneficial bacteria in our saliva convert the nitrates to nitrite, and eventually on to nitric oxide elsewhere in the body. Nitric oxide is a vasodilator that helps protect the heart and may improve exercise capacity and efficiency. More power is produced with less energy expended, so beets are certainly worth a try.

Just avoid using a mouthwash before drinking beet juice; a strong mouthwash might reduce the beneficial bacteria in the mouth and could possibly lessen the conversion of nitrate to nitrate; a necessary step in the beet benefit process. Beets offer a strong flavor so finding flavor combos that please the palate is a key to regular compliance (investing in a high performance blender will also help). A glass of fresh beet juice a few hours before intense exercise is ideal. Skip the beet pills; they don’t have the same potential as the actual beet root. Concentrated beet powders (without added sugars and fillers) are a convenient and portable back up plan when traveling. These can be easily mixed with water and used about 30 minutes before exercise. (more…)

CATEGORIES: Uncategorized
July 23rd, 2015 |

Don’t Fear the Tempeh! Vegan or Not, Put Plant-Based Proteins on Your Radar

Protein. We need it. It’s builds cells and helps repair muscle tissue. Our bones, blood, organs, muscles and skin all need protein to function properly. It’s the building block of neurotransmitters, the messaging cells in our bodies that allow all of our systems to communicate with each other. It’s pretty important stuff.

A google-image search of ‘protein’ brings up glossy images of steak, seafood, eggs and designer whey protein powders. Only a few images include beans and nuts. It’s pretty clear. In the world of protein, many people think of animal sources or supplements.

I recommend plant-based protein sources to both herbivores and omnivores alike. No matter how you classify yourself on the eating spectrum, it’s becoming clear that eating more plant-based foods is a good idea for all of us. From hardcore vegan to hardcore meat lover, plant-based proteins can be beneficial to include daily as they are naturally cholesterol-free, low in saturated fats and also contain healthful antioxidants and fiber. (more…)

May 8th, 2015 |

Yoga, Wellness & Fantastic Food on Martha’s Vineyard? YES!

What are you doing in exactly a month? How about joining me in Martha’s Vineyard (before it gets too crowded) with two fantastic yoga teachers for a 4-day yoga and wellness retreat! Yes, that’s right. Just sign up.

I’m joining Amy Leydon and Emily Phillips from June 7th-10th for Reboot Camp Wellness Retreat at the Vineyard Arts Project in Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard.

  • Luxurious accommodations with private bathrooms
  • Power Yoga, Barre, Meditation and Restorative Yoga classes throughout the day (all levels welcome)
  • Daily outdoor fitness excursions, including guided bike rides and beach workouts
  • Nutrition workshop with yours truly and private nutrition consultations also available
  • Local, organic, delicious cuisine prepared with love by head cheese maker Jacqueline Foster of Grey Barn Farm–ALL MEALS included

For more information and to register, visit


CATEGORIES: General, Nutrition
February 3rd, 2015 |

Less Lazy

Let’s start with a definition.

Laziness (also called indolence) is a disinclination to activity or exertion despite having the ability to do so. It is often used as a pejorative; related terms for a person seen to be lazy include couch potato, slacker, and bludger.

Why do I care about laziness? Well, it’s because I hear about it all the time. People know what to do when it comes to nutrition and exercise but laziness gets in the way of taking sustainable action. They would change a behavior if they weren’t so lazy.

Laziness might truly exist but to me it’s just a word, a label and a convenient excuse that’s getting in the way. It’s time to move on. Laziness reminds me of stress. Sure it exists and it may not ever go away, but it’s all in how you handle it. It’s time to get a little less lazy. (more…)

CATEGORIES: Exercise, Motivation
November 19th, 2014 |

10 Holiday Eating Tips

1. Enjoy! The holidays are a great time to gather with family and friends and eat incredible foods. Don’t miss out!

2. Balance. Most people do eat more calories during the holiday stretch. Think about ways to increase your activity to balance out the excess calories. Walk more during your workday. Extend your walk or run by 5-10 minutes. Take the train or bus and get off a stop earlier.Take the stairs during your workday. Small increases in activity can make a big difference.

3. Think Mediterranean. Go for savory vegetables, beans, legumes, nuts, whole grains, yogurt and olive oil whenever possible and use spices to help enhance flavor rather than an extra pat of butter or salt.

4. Focus on colorful vegetables. Most holiday meals are rich in vegetables such as squash, sweet potatoes, green beans, spinach, turnips and Brussels sprouts. These foods are an excellent way to include a good dose of protective antioxidants. Make your vegetable portions bigger than you normally do at holiday time. Fill your plate with color. (more…)

CATEGORIES: Healthy Weight
October 6th, 2014 |

Butter Me Up?

I keep getting asked about saturated fat after several flashy media reports about sat fat not being the cause of heart disease. The answer isn’t so simple. To me, it begs for a heavy dose of simple common sense.

Here’s an email response to a friend about this topic over the summer. It summarizes my thoughts without getting into the nitty gritty of nutrition epidemiology. I thought it would be worth sharing. Here it is:

Hey, I’m in the Adirondacks with spotty cell service. I’m in Lake Placid right now doing a few errands & just peeking at this so I wanted to write back my quick thoughts.


July 29th, 2014 |

Introducing Walking Wednesdays at Lown Cardiovascular Center

I’m always encouraging (ok, begging) my clients and patients to “keep it moving.” It’s no surprise that a commitment to regular exercise has many benefits, for both body and mind. What’s more, it’s fun with the support of others.

I’m now offering my follow-up office nutrition visits as outside walking visits. I also just started an evening walking wellness group at the Lown Cardiovascular Center in Brookline.

The “Walking Wednesdays” group meets from 5 – 6 pm every Wednesday. The walks will start and finish at Lown, 21 Longwood Avenue, Brookline MA. The walks are rain or shine.

The group is FREE. Participation is open to anyone wanting to exercise with the motivation of others. All levels of fitness are welcome. The walks can be adapted to your fitness level. Parking is available on a first come, first serve basis from 5-6 pm at Lown. Public transportation is only a block away with the MBTA Green Line C Train, Coolidge Corner stop. There is also a Hubway bike share stop in the Coolidge Corner area. (more…)

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