Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Love makes the World Go Round

Hello Lovelies!
This past week was also lovely, wonderful, and inspiring. I may not have gotten much (any) sleep, but it was all well worth it!!

Wednesday was a CitySearch Dictator event sponsored by the lovely Christine Lui at Sassoon Salon. We got glamtastic, and were treated to consultations, blowouts, Aquavit Cocktails and City Table Appetizers.
image credit: Christine Liu, Citysearch
I opted not to have them flat iron my hair, because with 80%+ humidity, straight hair doesn't stand a chance in my world!!

image credit: Christine Liu, Citysearch
I got to meet some fabulous Boston chicas and I can't wait for some more events! the perks of being a dictator! (want in? fill out this form! )

After fighting away thunderstorms working at the Farmers Market, I did a quick change in the Marriot lobby restroom and headed to the MDA Socials For Success at Alibi Lounge. It was fun talking with new RDs about the myriad of jobs they are currently holding! Everything from bariatric surgery in major hospitals, to working with eating disorder outpatients, and sourcing bananas for Equal Exchange. Very inspiring!!

Then I hopped over to the other side of the River for Cocktails with some serious Mixologist friends! The men of Observational Gastrophysics and TedxCambridge whipped out their shakers, and utilized Kevin's well-stocked liquor closet.

they're serious about their craft
I brought stevia, fresh local strawberries, raspberries and bread, and took full advantage of "ladies first."

The night was an Education on cocktail lore, traditions and history. I learned so much about Flavor pairings, and fun facts like When it is appropriate to use Mole bitters.

awol aflame, vegan taza chocolate martini's and hibiscus lime

All Work, All Play: I worked all weekend, celebrated 2 birthdays, started to plan the 2010-2011 MSDA agenda, and officially decided that Monday nights are my favorite night to go out. I can't tell you how many cocktails i drank, and how little sleep i got-it was epic though, and well-worth it.

There's no place like home: I'm about hop on a plane and head back home. I'm really REALLY excited to see my family and friends, and show Priyanka a bit of wild wyoming.
Plus, And there is a new member of my family I am just DYING to meet!!
Meet Gypsy-the puppy my sister rescued from the pound. She sounds adorable and I can't wait to see her!


i hope to be posting regularly, but who knows where this life will take me! In the meantime, check out these!

Links:
How has your week been? What's your favorite part about visiting home? What makes you feel glamorous?
<3>

Monday, June 28, 2010

[Sushi] Rollin With my Homies


I simply adore planning things-parties, events, outings etc. and Naveen and I are diligently at work crossing things off of our Summer of Food Bucket List. What would we follow Haute Oats with? Brown Rice Sushi seemed appropriate! Although I have made sushi several times at home, this would be my first solo adventure, without the guidance of my mother and our dear Japanese friend who is my sushi guru.

Since I am not of a Japanese heritage, I did a basic google search for how to properly prepare the rice. This left me with 1. 2 billion different recipes with slightly different nuances in rice making 2. gems of wisdom like- " Don’t overcook or undercook your rice." Gee-thanks! So I decided to go with my homeboys-Alton Brown and Mark Bittman-two hip white dudes who love their food!


If Alton says it's true it must be! We used his recipe (copied below) to make the "perfect sushi rice"- with one (small) change-we also tried brown rice. I know, sushi purists everywhere are tsktsking me, but a. I had never experimented outside the traditional white rice sushi making, and we all know how much I love new things! and b. brown rice is just so much more nutritious than white rice!! White rice is produced by removing the outer layers of brown rice. Those discarded layers contain nutrients (such as magnesium and insoluble fiber) that have been shown to guard against diabetes, and heart disease. Because brown rice has so much more fiber, vitamins, minerals and protein you get a lot more nutritional bang for your (calorie) buck than with white rice. (since I am a people pleaser we served both white and brown, and both were well received)

Sushi Rice:
  • 2 cups Rice (brown or white short grain sushi rice)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2T seasoned rice vinegar (available in asian markets everywhere)
**note the great ratios! 1:1:1 so you can make as much or as little as you need!!**

Rinse sushi rice well, and then bring to a boil with top on (glass lids will be your new best friend). Reduce to a low setting, and continue to cook fro 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered with a cloth for at least 10 minutes. Mix in rice vinegar, and fold in like you would egg whites. Key point-mix the vinegar and rice in a Non-metallic bowl-This was a common theme-don't want the acidity of the vinegar reacting with the metal!

So I gathered up a crew of young foodies and we got a rollin'!

With Nori sheets galore, limited rolling mats, and bowls of water handy (fingers get sticky fast!), we tried to assemble edible rolls that didn't instantly turn into sushi salad, mostly without fail.


Bittman was also a source of inspiration-his minimalist article prompted some great vegetable combination. Here's what we threw into the mix:
  • avocado
  • mango
  • tofu (both marinated in soy sauce and plain)
  • burdock root
  • pickled radish
  • carrot
  • radish
  • scallions
  • mint
  • shiso
  • cucumber


and of course, wasabi and pickled ginger on the side.

you have no idea how much I wanted to buy this 2.2 LB bag of wasabi. I (thankfully) decided it was thoroughly impractical.

roll it up
Then we enjoyed our rolls, sampled others. Now our rolls pale in comparison to Luxirare's but hey-i think we did pretty good! Plus, Sake Mojitos make everything ok

Sake Mojito
  • 1 bottle sake
  • fresh mint
  • juice of ~ 3-4 limes
  • Stevia to Taste
Pour sake and lime juice into pitcher. add mint, and muddle. Add stevia until desired sweetness is reached. Enjoy!


Take-Out Message:
  • brown rice works!
  • size doesn't matter. big or small, compact or falling apart- we love them all
  • if all else fails, make a sushi salad!
  • Shiso makes everything better
  • Don't be afraid of pickled radish or burdock root-the unexpected is often the most delightful
  • mango is delicious
  • asian markets are very fun to explore
Thank you to my lovely friends who came and indulge in our experiments!

and especially to katie enzer-for letting us invade her kitchen!!

I do love theme dining occasions-have you had any fun dinner parties lately? Any ideas for me?

Friday, June 25, 2010

Smarter Cardio


remember this shirt?? yup-totally stole it from my dad!
During finals period, my favorite activity becomes studying notes while on the elliptical or reclined bike at the gym. While probably not the greatest workouts I have ever had, they make me feel better about life, in that I am getting a bit of a workout, and not taking too big of a break from studying. Plus, I hate just sitting and re-reading notes, and would rather being moving!
So it was to my delight when I was resting my eyes from memorizing MNT and Exercise Phys to browse through the March edition of Women's Health. And what do I find? Low and behold an article about Cardiovascular health making you smarter!
"Cardiovascular health is more important than any other single factor in preserving and improving learning and memory.You're working out your brain at the same time as your heart" Dr. Thomas Cross, memory researcher.
While I knew this from experience, it was great to see it backed up by science. Exercise brings extra blood to your brain cells, getting more oxygen and glucose that it needs to function optimally. Exercise also releases hormones serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, boosting your mood, and increasing attention. An interesting study was done on people who exercise for 1 hr per day, 3x week for six months. Researchers found an increase in their hippocampal size, the part of the brain responsible for memory and learning. After only 6 months, the participants were able to preform concentration and recall tasks better. I know there's nothing better than a run in the morning to really wake me up and get me started on my day. Who needs caffeine when you have endorphins and sunshine??
"Exercise improves attention, memory, accuracy, and how quickly you process information, all of which helps you make smarter decisions." -Dr. Charles Hillman, professor of kinesiology.

Released this month, a study presented by the American College of Sports Medicine showed higher grade point averages (GPA) among undergraduates who more often engaged in at least 20 minutes of vigorous physical activity.

“While the link between physical activity and academic achievement is well established for elementary and middle-school students, this has been less studied among college students,” said Joshua Ode, Ph.D., who supervised the study. “We documented a positive association between vigorous activity and GPA.”

So get out there, and get exercising, you smartie!

How often do you exercise? Do you notice a reduction in stress and increase mood/concentration because of exercise?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

I was a bride married to amazement....

I am thoroughly in love with my life right now. I want to shout my joy from the rooftops. the past week has been such a whirlwind!!

After meeting up with the fabulous Kara Lydon at the Stuff Food Issue release party, I headed Cambridgeside, to join my TedX friends at Hotel Veritas. After being the entire life of the party at Simple Truth (our experience eloquently summed up here) I got a chance to peek into the most impressive cocktail bar I have ever seen constructed in a Cambridge college apartment. I hope to return soon.

Kevin Liu-tedx, bartending, and carpenter genius
Went Zorbing

yea-we rolled down a hill in a giant plastic bubble
Said a very sad goodbye to Corinne. Boston will miss her dearly. This just gives me another excuse to visit SF though!

she will be missed

I hopped on the bus to NYC to participate in Mind Over Madness Yoga-welcoming the summer solstice with other yogis in Times Square.

My heart was open and I sweated it out in a noon session with Donna Rubin of Bikram Yoga under the brilliant rays of the sun-a a natural studio. 26 poses done twice brought back a feeling of comforting known, in the midst of chaotic unknown.

After hydrating and refueling I returned with Beth and Steph for a Vinyasa Flow with Dana Flynn of Laughing Lotus. An inspirational, fun flow class while we felt like performers as hundreds of spectators watched our harmony.

Reverberating oms drew the soul to a state of bliss. There was something incredibly soothing about 500 people gathering peacefully in the middle of times square to celebrate life and all of its abundance.


namaste

The thing we found most intriguing was the number of spectators! Everyone walking by stopped to take pictures, watch, observe, take it all in. And it wasn't a fleeting turn of the head. people stayed... the power of yoga.

yes, this really happened.
We did a James Bond-esque quick change in a hotel restroom and headed to Caravan of Dreams for an amazing all-vegan dinner. Then dropped by Apotheke for our 'prescriptions'.

Strawberry Fennel cocktail convinced me that I need to return asap.

The morning involved a run through Central Park, followed by breakfast, complete with Tea at Alice's Tea Cup


Lunch and Best coffee ever with my aunt and then a long bus ride home

This week I have a dictator party, work at the farmers market, socials for success at alibi, and a cocktail tasting.

Let me leave you with part of Mary Oliver's poem- "When Death Comes":

And therefore I look upon everything
as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,
and I look upon time as no more than an idea,
and I consider eternity as another possibility,

and I think of each life as a flower, as common
as a field daisy, and as singular,

and each name a comfortable music in the mouth
tending as all music does, toward silence,

and each body a lion of courage, and something
precious to the earth.

When it’s over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was a bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened
or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.

~Mary Oliver

Is yoga a spectator sport? Tell me something that made you ecstatic, happy, smile, laugh, shine today!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

And the Winner is......


OOPS! Sorry to psych you out a few hours ago!
Without further ado: I used Random.org and drew four winners for the NuNaturals Giveaway

Congratulations to Naveen, Kevin, Katherine, and Sarena! Shoot me an email (ejarrard (at) gmail.com) with your address and I'll make sure the stevia is on it's way!
Thank you to Ron and the NuNaturals team for giving me the opportunity to host this great giveaway!

I'm on the bus back from NYC with many stories to tell-stay tuned!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Getting Matched: a Guide for Dietetics Students

Happy First day of SUMMER!!! I am currently on a bus to NYC where I'm meeting up with Steph to go to Solstice Yoga in Times Square. I wanted to share with you something I've been reading on my trip up here: "Getting Matched"
I am working with Jenny Westerkamp, the founder of All Access Internships as a social media intern this summer. She just released a new e-book "Getting Matched: a Guide for Dietetics Students" and asked me to review it. Well I loved it-and highly recommend it to any nutrition students in the process of looking at/applying for dietetic internships, the final step pre-RD. Nutrition students everywhere are in a tough spot: in April 2010 match, 4,169 students applied for DI positions and only 2,076 students received a match in the first round. Since the internships (much like Rotations in Med School) are required before sitting for the RD exam, this can be a very stressful process. This summer I am really focusing on researching DI sites, and doing a lot of self-reflection on what I want out of an internship, and where I think my career path is headed.

All-Access Internships is a GREAT resource for any nutrition students-it has links to get more experience, testimonials for past interns, and many articles about the nutrition profession and internships sites. Westerkamp also offers individual and group coaching as well as a monthly newsletter, a list serv community, a blog by dietetics students, intern testimonials, videocasts, tips, and discussions on Facebook and Twitter.

I jumped at the chance to read and review "Getting Matched: a Guide for Dietetics Students" and it was WELL worth the read! Well-written, thorough, and fun to read, there were so many tips to take away from it! Here are a few of the highlights:
  • I really enjoyed reading success stories from students and interns across the country; what they did differently to be admitted and how I could make my application stand out. There were also interviews with DI directors, and what they look for in applicants.
  • I loved that instead of bland generic advice, such as 'get good grades and have a lot of experience' there were specific action steps listed throughout the book. A lot of these steps went straight on my To-Do list
  • Great tips for creating a stellar resume-what i need to do right now!
  • How to Rock an Interview-pointers, and tips/tricks
  • A list of the many possible jobs for RDs was very uplifting and inspiring! RDs definitely aren't just in hospital kitchens people! One of my favorite things about meeting RDs is the myriad of different jobs they hold, from chef, to PR consultants. Networking and talking to current RDs is one of my favorite things about this career path-there are so many amazing, fascinating (mostly women) with excellent careers out there. So inspiring!
With a positive, upbeat attitude Westerkamp provides a great how-to for us nutrition students. If you are planning on applying to a dietetic internship I highly recommend you get Getting Matched. It's not expensive and an indispensable resource!

Jenny included this quote in the book, and I couldn't agree more:
“Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn
out.”John Wooden
What have you been reading lately? If you are a nutrition student or RD I'd love to hear any tips or thoughts on the application process!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day

Happy Fathers Day to my Papa:

best shirt ever.
He's still as amazing as he was last year. One thing I've been really appreciative about both of my parents lately is that they instilled in their children a sense of pride, and self-worth. They have never placed an emphasis on physical beauty, instead we were always praised for our kindness, brains, and attitude about life. We were taught that we could do anything, and we didn't have to have the perfect butt, hair or abs to get far in life. I am extremely lucky to have been raised in a family where my mother was not on a constant diet, where positive body messages abounded. My parents both exercise regularly for their health, and they're doing great! Corinne shared a great video on her blog the other day, and I just had to share it here too:




So thank you Parents!

Happy Day Dad-See you in two weeks!

Friday, June 18, 2010

2010 Dietary Guidelines Summary Released

Dietary Guidelines (DG) Advisory Committee released their Executive summary this past Tuesday, June 15th, 2010. The full report can be found here and is currently open for public comments. These guidelines are used for government nutrition initiatives, programs and education, as well as by dietitians and health professionals to help educate people about eating healthier.The Committee has used a state-of-the-art, web-based electronic system and methodology, known as the Nutrition Evidence Library, to answer the majority of the scientific questions it posed, about specific nutrients and foods. It is important that our dietary recommendations are backed by solid science.

The 2010 DG are different from previous reports in that this one addresses an American public of whom the majority are overweight or obese and yet under-nourished in several key nutrients. On average, Americans of all ages consume too few vegetables, fruits, high-fiber whole grains, low-fat milk and milk products, and seafood and they eat too much added sugars, solid fats, refined grains, and sodium. Added Sugar and Fat contribute approximately 35 percent of calories to the American diet. The current US Food environment is loaded with excess sodium, sugar, fat and refined grains, making it harder for the average consumer to eat healthy.

The Recommendations can be boiled down to this:

  • Shift food intake patterns to a more plant-based diet that emphasizes vegetables, cooked dry beans and peas, fruits, whole grains, nuts, and seeds.
  • Significantly reduce intake of foods containing added sugars and solid fats because these dietary components contribute excess calories and few, if any, nutrients. In addition, reduce sodium intake and intake of refined grains.Daily sodium intake be 1,500 mg, (down from 2,300mg in the 2005 recommendations).
  • Increase physical activity: adults should get at least 2½ hours of moderate-intensity physical activity each week, such as brisk walking, or 1¼ hours of a vigorous-intensity activity, such as jogging or swimming laps, or a combination of the two types. Kids and teens should do an hour or more of moderate-intensity to vigorous physical activity each day.

It's great to see vegetarian/vegan nutrition being supported so strongly by the nutrition world. A Mediterranean diet is also praised as being Optimal-see Steph's great post on this here.

While I strongly support these recommendations, there are several things that must be changed about our Food environment so that eating healthy is easy, accessible and affordable. Hopefully our government will launch initiatives that seek to improve

  • Nutrition literacy and cooking skills
  • Financial incentives to purchase, prepare, and consume vegetables and fruit, whole grains, seafood, fat-free and low-fat milk and milk products, lean meats, and other healthy foods.
  • Availability of affordable fresh produce through greater access to grocery stores, produce trucks, and farmers’ markets. Let's Eliminate Food Deserts!
  • Environmentally sustainable production of vegetables, fruits, and fiber-rich whole grains.
  • Comprehensive health, nutrition, and physical education programs and curricula in US schools and preschools
  • Encourage restaurants and the food industry to offer health-promoting foods that are low in sodium; limited in added sugars, refined grains, and solid fats; and served in smaller portions.

This summary is now open for public comments-so what do you have to say? Tell me here or submit your comment to the committee here! You can also read what others are saying here. Will changing the recommendations help make American healthier or do we first need to change the entire food environment?

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Healthy Summer Slaw



i just adore summer vegetables! My CSA started this week, and my fridge is plum-full of greens! nothing better!


fresh, local, organic, delicious

Today I’d love to share with you a refreshing coleslaw for the summer! By swapping out the mayo with some lime and cilantro, you get a vegetarian side that’s both healthy and refreshing!

Ingredients:

  • 1 head purple cabbage
  • Juice of 6 small limes
  • 1/2 a bunch of cilantro
  • Pinch of salt

Coarsely chop cabbage.

Combine cabbage, lime juice, and cilantro in food processor. Pulse several times until you reach desired size of cabbage. Salt as desired!


Voila! This simple refreshing slaw is sure to be a healthy hit at your next BBQ or picnic!


What's your favorite early summer food?? Don't forget to enter my giveaway!

Breaking News-

  • The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans report was released yesterday- and the advisory committee joined the United Nations in advocating a plant-based diet
"Shift food intake patterns to a more plant-based diet that emphasizes vegetables, cooked dry beans and peas, fruits, whole grains, nuts, and seeds."
Yes Please! You can see the full report here