About Me

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Technically speaking, I'm a dietitian, but I see myself as a listener, a motivator, coach and teacher of nutrition. I prefer to end a busy day with a glass of red wine while chopping vegetables. Lover of almost anything pickled and fresh baked scones just not at the same time. I'm happiest when I'm cooking for people I love. Why am I so into food? Because I KNOW how much eating well can change your life. What you eat every day is going to impact your body and your mind. It's a confusing world out there - full of diet and food advice that always leaves you feeling like it's that one next diet that's going to be the weight loss answer. Stop waiting for that magic diet, and begin to take one step at a time in the right direction. I'm here to help you on your life-long journey, there's no better time to start!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Are You Creamy or Crunchy?

People often think of peanut butter as a food to avoid for weight management and weight loss. Good news! It’s time to put that thought to rest and start enjoying peanut butter for its great taste, satisfying texture, and most of all for its health benefits! This creamy comfort food has a high content of both mono and poly- unsaturated fats; the good fats we want to eat more of for heart health. Eating healthy fat in moderation helps to stay satisfied from smaller portions and snacks, to keep hunger and cravings at bay throughout the day. Eating peanut butter and other nut butters, like almond butter, can be an easy way to fit in your daily recommended one ounce of nuts to reduce your risk of heart disease. Nuts are also a great source of fiber and protein (think post-workout recovery snack).

Unfortunately, some of the most popular brands of peanut butter also contain high amounts of added sugar and trans-fat. Trans fat is the worst type of fat to consume and serves no purpose in the body. In fact, trans fat lowers your “good” cholesterol (HDL) and raises your “bad” cholesterol (LDL) and triglycerides. Neither you nor your kids should be consuming peanut butter that contains trans fat, even if it is in small amounts. If you don’t have to mix the oil yourself – then you can assume the product has trans fat. Look for peanut or almond butter that contains very few ingredients: peanuts and salt (optional). If you see “hydrogenated or partially-hydrogenated oil” listed, choose a different product. Be aware of clever marketing slogans that can trick you into thinking a product is healthy. “Natural” really doesn’t mean anything; you need to look at the ingredients list. Depending on the product, peanut butter can go from a very healthy snack choice to a very unhealthy choice with the addition of a few unnecessary ingredients.

Read this article from the Mayo Clinic to learn more about trans fat:

Lately John and I have been loving a product called Naturally More. It is basically peanut butter with a boost of Omega-3's from ground flax and protein from egg white. There is a small amount of honey and cane sugar added in - but only 2 g sugar for 2 Tbsp - totally worth it in my opinion. The calories are slightly lower than regular peanut butter because of the higher protein content which displaces some of the fat.  I love this stuff. Y-U-M.   You can even go all the way and get the Organic Naturally More! Here's what it looks like:

Now that you know what to look for, enjoy nut butter in moderation. 1 tablespoon of this good stuff contains 100 calories, 7 grams of protein and 8 grams of fat. Spread it on whole grain bread, sliced apples or add to a shake to boost calories and protein.


  1. Sum - have you heard of Better than Peanut Butter? It's delicious, but I'm scared it's really bad... tell me, expert!

  2. Not terrible - it is a different nutrient category though - it's more of a carb than a fat. You don't get the health benefits that you get from natural nut butter because almost all of the healthy fats have been taken out - then they added in more carbohydrate from tapioca. There's no trans fat in it. In my opinion - if you want PB, have the real thing. If you eat, let's say, toast and Better n' Peanut Butter then you're getting carb + carb, but if you have toast and reg peanut butter you're getting carb + healthy fat, which is a more balance choice, likely more satisfying. I'm neutral on this product. Thanks for asking!