Ask a Dietitian

Hello! I just visited the doctor for the first time in my adult life and found out I am anemic, prediabetic, and have narcolepsy. I've been trying to find out what foods to avoid, any help with that would be much appreciated! Thanks!

Thanks for your question. Unfortunately, I can't answer questions about medical conditions over the internet. I recommend that you talk to your healthcare provider about this. You can also ask for a referral to a registered dietitian who will have access to your medical records and can help you develop a plan for your diet.

Reading a lot on wheat and how it's connected to belly fat.should I just not eat wheat or can I substitute something else

Hi there.  What an interesting question!  There are many health claims on wheat and belly fat.  However, I think one big item that has been overlooked in these claims is the kind of wheat that most people are eating.  Americans tend to over-consume refined and processed wheat products.  Think white bread, bagels and pasta.  These types of products are usually less nutritious and tend to be higher in fat and sugar.

Is there a type of omega fatty acid that is not necessary as a supplement if you have meat?

Hello!  What an interesting questions about omega fatty acids!  

Here's a quick lesson about omega fatty acids.  Omega fatty acids are polyunsaturated fats.  These types of fats are ones that our bodies don't produce so we need to find them in the foods we eat.  They are also called essential fatty acids because we need to find them in food.

Omega-3 fatty acids are found mostly in fatty fish or cold water fish.  Think salmon, mackerel, or anchovies.  You can also find them in vegetarian forms, such as in walnuts and flax seeds.

As a pre diabetic and PCOS victim I am required to use a BYETTA injection before eating my evening meal. It seems to cause some distress (Upset stomach, some bloating, some aches and pain). What might I do for dinner to offset the complications that come

Thank you for your question. Unfortunately, we cannot offer nutrition advice for medical concerns over the internet. I encourage you to speak with your healthcare professional and request to speak with a Registered Dietitian (RD), who you can work with to create a diet plan perfect for you.

Once you meet with a RD, you two can discover healthy recipes on EatFresh.org to fit within your diet plan. 

Hello, My name is Jacob Kedroske and I am a student at the University of Michigan. I am currently doing a research paper on how a vegan diet changes your health. Would you be willing to answer a few questions to help me out? If so please email. Thank you

Hi Jacob,

I appreciate you contacting me with your question.  EatFresh.org does not focus on one type of diet, like the vegan diet.  Instead we encourage eating a balanced diet which includes eating a variety of different fruits and vegetables, adding lean animal and and plant-based proteins, and choosing whole grains.

Good luck and I hope you can connect with someone who can help you with your paper.

Do you recommend drinking a protein shake (in general, and/ or in specific situations, such as before or after a workout)?

Hi there!  Thanks for your question.  There is a lot of information about protein shakes, especially when it comes to drinking them before or after exercising.  Protein is an important source for energy and we could usually get enough protein in the foods we eat.  

Is gatorade/ powerade recommended for someone who has experienced vomiting?

Hi there.  Unfortunately, I cannot offer nutrition advice for medical concerns over the internet, especially since I don't know the reasons why you are vomiting.

I can say that when you are vomiting, you are prone to dehydration.  Gatorade and Powerade contain electrolytes, which are nutrients that our bodies need to keep our fluids in balance.  Many of these nutrients you can actually get by eating fruits and vegetables.  While you are prone to losing these electrolytes when you vomit, Gatorade and Powerade are also full of added sugar.  

1. Which is healthier, butter or margarine? 2. Is oil always healthier than soft-tub margarines? 3. Is something like SmartBalance considered healthy, or would oil be preferred?

Hey there.  Wow, so many interesting questions that are all related to fat.  Instead of answering each of the questions individually, let me try to answer them together.

Butter and margarine are mostly made of saturated fats.  Most saturated fats are solid at room temperature.  Eating too much of these kinds of fats have been associated with weight gain, heart disease and other chronic illnesses. It is recommended to try to limit saturated fats in your diet to lower your risk of these illnesses.

Does one need to be concerned about mercury when it comes to eating fish?

What a great question!  Fish is an important part of a healthy diet.  Fish and other seafood have nutrients that are good for you like omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D, and many are high in protein and low in saturated fat.

Additionally, there have been some studies that show that eating fish once or twice a week may lower your risk of developing stroke, depression, Alzheimer's disease and other chronic conditions.

Mercury is an issue in fish and seafood, but knowing which fish have lower mercury levels than others is good way to still keep fish in your diet.

Is turkey bacon and turkey sausage healthy/ unhealthy?

Hi there!  What a great question!  I know a lot of people who are interested in knowing if turkey bacon and sausage is a healthier choice than pork bacon or pork sausage.  Unfortunately, most turkey bacon and turkey sausage still have high saturated fat content and many have high levels of sodium. These are two substances that can put you at greater risk to developing heart disease.

Here is a quick comparison of turkey bacon and pork bacon:

Does vinegar offer any nutritional benefits, or is it better not to have it for any reason?

Hi there!  What a great question.  Vinegar has been a hot topic on the internet with so many health claims attached to it.  I can see how anyone could be confused on whether vinegar is nutritionally beneficial or not.  

The good news is vinegar is a healthy choice to add to your meals.  What gives vinegar its acid taste is acetic acid, which happens during the process of making vinegar.  Check here to learn more about vinegar.  

I am looking for recipes for someone who has Cirrhosis and diabetes.

Thank you for your question. Unfortunately, we cannot offer nutrition advice for medical concerns over the internet. I encourage you to speak with you healthcare professional and request to speak with a Registered Dietitian (RD), who you can work with to create a diet plan perfect for you.

Once you meet with a RD, you two can discover healthy recipes on EatFresh.org to fit within your diet plan. Together, look through the recipes under the "Low Added Sugar" tab here. I wish you the best!

I am looking for a non-sugar, non-dairy cookie mix – does this exist?

What a great question, and yes, no sugar/no dairy cookies do exist!  Below is a simple 2 ingredient recipe for a naturally sweet cookie.

It can be easy to change a recipe when you make it yourself. You can swap out ingredients that are healthier or change ingredients for another ingredient! Think walnuts for chocolate chips or even dried cranberries for raisins!  Cooking from scratch allows you to save money, make healthier choices and lets you be creative in the kitchen!  

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