Like Seaweed and Quail Eggs? How trying new foods may link to a healthy weight

Polenta, quinoa, kimchi or seaweed – have you tried these foods, or even cooked with them? If so, you might be an adventurous eater – getting a thrill from seeking out and trying foods less familiar to most Americans. According to a new study, you might even weigh less than people who are less adventurous. And a healthy weight is one important factor for keeping risk low for many cancers, including colorectal, postmenopausal breast and kidney.

Published in the journal Obesitythe study authors set out to look at whether being willing to try new or different foods might relate to weight (BMI). Although some earlier studies found that eating more of a variety of foods links to higher BMI, in those cases variety meant eating more foods at one time. Here, the researchers wanted to look at women they describe as “neophiles” – adventurous eaters who enjoy trying new foods.

The 501 women in the study ranged from age 20-35 and they averaged slightly above a healthy weight, 43% Caucasian, with about one-quarter each Black and Hispanic. Continue reading


Study: Before Colorectal Cancer, Eating Healthy and Following AICR Recs Prolongs Survival

For colorectal cancer, research shows that eating healthy, being active, and staying a healthy weight make a big difference in reducing the risk of developing this cancer. AICR estimates that while there are no guarantees, one of every two colorectal cancer cases can be prevented by following our recommendations.

Now a new study suggests that following AICR recommendations for prevention years before diagnosis can prolong survival for those who do develop colorectal cancer. And every recommendation followed decreased the risk of dying a little more.

The study was published in BMC Medicine.

10-recommendations-infographic Continue reading


The Shocking Truth About Portion Sizes

Since being overweight increases risk for nine cancers (including breast and prostate cancer), maintaining a healthy weight is one of the best ways to reduce your risk. When I’m counseling clients and giving tips to help them lose weight, one thing always seems to surprise people the most: what a true serving size is.

Did you know the serving size of cooked pasta is ½ cup? Most restaurants will dish out close to 2 cups of pasta, the equivalent of 4 servings. We live in such a portion-large environment that we all (including registered dietitians!) tend to have a distorted view of what a serving size is.

Seeing super-sized restaurant portions causes us to have a skewed perception of how much to serve in our own homes, leading to larger portions all around. Continue reading