Tag Archives: Westchester dietician

Germ Buster Nutrition – Eating for a Strong Immune System

Posted on: October 13, 2015

Germ Buster Nutrition – Eating for a Strong Immune System

Prevent the flu with good nutrition. 

By Elisa Bremner

In anticipation of flu season, it’s time to talk about prevention. First and foremost, please remember: the best defense against the flu is a year-round offense. This means eating right, staying active (60 minutes every day), getting enough rest (7-9 hours!) and minimizing stress (we can’t avoid stressful events in our life, but we can make the decision to handle them better). That being said, several nutrients play a role in enhancing your immunity. Mild deficiency of even one nutrient may weaken your body’s ability to fight infection.

“ACE” Germ Prevention 101!

Vitamins A, C and E, known as anti-oxidants, work together to protect you from infections and stressors on the body. Vitamin A keeps the skin and mucous membranes healthy, fortifying your first line of defense. It’s easy to find Vitamin A’s precursor, beta carotene, in orange-colored fruits and vegetables, such as sweet potatoes, carrots, bell peppers, apricots and mango. Eat these, and your body can make the vitamin A you need. Vitamin C stimulates the formation of antibodies, boosting immunity. Citrus fruits provide good amounts of Vitamin C, as do kiwis, strawberries, red peppers and tomatoes. Vitamin E neutralizes free radicals, stressors on the body which can cause cellular damage or disease. Foods highest in Vitamin E include sunflower seeds, almonds, spinach and safflower oil.

Although we tend to associate protein strictly with muscle, it plays an integral role in the body’s defense mechanism, important to growth and repair. As with all things food, moderation is still necessary, more is not necessarily better. Choose a variety of protein sources, including fish and other seafood, poultry, eggs, lean meat, legumes, soy products, nuts and seeds.

One mineral that helps the immune system work properly is zinc. Food sources of zinc include lean beef, wheat germ, shellfish, wheat bran, sunflower seeds, black-eyed peas, almonds, milk and tofu.

Other nutrients, including vitamin B6, folate, selenium, iron and copper, as well as prebiotics and probiotics, may also influence immune response. A plant-based diet rich in whole foods (unprocessed) that includes variety, especially a variety of fruits and vegetables is the best way to prevent disease. Whether you’re talking about a sniffle, the flu or cancer, the advice is the same. Make sure you are eating 5-9 servings of colorful fruits and vegetables every day, and please don’t restrict it to those mentioned above.

Germ-Buster Salad

10 oz. baby spinach
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 Tbsp. sunflower seeds
2 tsp. safflower oil
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Eat and enjoy fortifying your defenses.

For more information about boosting your immune system and keeping healthy through nutrition, consult a Registered Dietitian.

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The Basics of Good Nutrition, by Northern Westchester Hospital Dietitian

Posted on: November 7, 2013

Let’s Celebrate ‘Good Nutrition Month’
By: Kimberly Stein, RD, CDN


November kicks off the holiday season, but there’s another reason to celebrate: It’s Good Nutrition Month.  The core ideas of what “good nutrition” constitutes come directly from the USDA MyPlate recommendations.  MyPlate is a revamped version of the food pyramid and was created as an easier visual guide to help consumers know what their main meals should consist of.  Here are 7 key points…

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New York Registered Dietician on Whole Grains

Posted on: September 22, 2013

Whole grains, they’re not just for breakfast anymore!

By Jill Ashbey-Pejoves RD, CDN, CNSC, CDE

According to the 2010 Dietary Guideline for Americans, we should make half our grains whole. But why stop at half? The average adult doesn’t get even close to the 25-38 grams of fiber per day recommended by the Institutes of Medicine. By definition, whole grains or foods made from them contain all the essential parts and naturally-occurring nutrients of the original kernel including the bran, germ, and endosperm.

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New York Registered Dietitian Discusses Alternative Breakfasts

Posted on: September 19, 2013

Boost Up Your Breakfast!

By: Kimberly Stein, RD, CDN

Let me ask you a question. If you were planning a cross-country road trip, would you fill up the gas tank? Well, the same applies when it comes to starting off your day with breakfast. Not having breakfast is just like not filling up the gas tank. I bet you have heard countless times “breakfast is the most important meal of the day”—and rightly so! There is ample evidence to support that including a healthy breakfast each day has multiple benefits. In honor of Better Breakfast Month, I want to share some of the ways breakfast can benefit our bodies and also, how you can spice up your typical routine.

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