All Posts By Dana Angelo White

Protein-Enhanced Foods: The Good, Bad and Ugly

by in Healthy Tips, July 31, 2013

whey protein
It seems like everywhere I turn, new and “improved” high protein-versions of seemingly healthy foods are being advertised. How do they boost the protein content? And are they really a good-for-you choice? So I did some digging, and it turns out, it depends!

Cereals
The addition of soy protein isolate will virtually double the amount of protein per serving but this doesn’t automatically make these cereals health food. Many of these breakfast cereals are still drenched in sugar. Read labels carefully and look for ones made with whole grains.

Top Pick: Nature Valley Protein Crunchy Granola

Flavored Waters
Protein-fortified waters may be the silliest choice out there. Water is water, no protein in sight. The blends are typically a mix of sweeteners (real and artificial) and colors, plus some whey protein isolate. These high-protein options will supply a few grams of protein per serving but they shouldn’t be used as a replacement for good old H2O.

Top Pick: Homemade Flavored Water

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10 Fun Ways to Enjoy Coconut Water

by in Healthy Recipes, July 29, 2013

coconut water
Chilled coconut water is a tasty beverage (and keeps gaining popularity), but I’ve been coming up with all kinds of ways to use it.

  1. Try this Crazy Coconut Lemonade.
  2. Make frozen treats! Add to ice pops or fro-yo.
  3. Cozy up with Slow-Cooker Coconut Brown Rice Pudding.
  4. How about a cool spin on ceviche?
  5. Whisk with lime juice, honey and pinch of salt for a light and refreshing salad dressing.
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5 Healthier Hot Dogs

by in Grilling, July 23, 2013

hotdog buns

I used to be totally against anything related to a hot dog. Two kids later, I find myself turning to them as a viable option for the occasional backyard barbecue or last-minute weeknight dinner. Part of the reason I changed my mind was because of healthier options. After reading TONS of ingredient labels, I found some decent choices out there, with something to please everyone (including vegetarians). In honor of National Hot Dog Day, here are some of the top dogs.

Better Dogs

Beef
Applegate Farms Uncured Beef Hot Dog
Beef, spices and that’s about it. These tasty hot dogs are free of nitrates and have only 70 calories and 6 grams of fat. Organic versions are also available and Applegate Farms uses no antibiotics with their animals.

Veggie
Field Roast Vegetarian Frankfurter
Super popular among vegetarians and meat-eaters alike, this 2.75-ounce “frankfurter” contains 180 calories and 8 grams of fat. It’s made from wheat gluten, tomato paste and spices. It’s a bit high in the sodium department (690 milligrams), so reserve for occasional enjoyment.

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Food Fight! Lemonade vs. Iced Tea

by in Healthy Tips, July 22, 2013

lemonade and iced tea
Looking to quench your thirst with one of these summertime classics? First, check out which drink came out on top in this battle of the beverages.

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Exercise Trends Worth Trying

by in Fitness, July 21, 2013

sneakers
Looking for a new way to work out? At the recent National Athletic Trainer’s Association annual meeting, I was able to check out what’s trending with exercise experts. Here’s the lowdown on the latest gear–and what’s worth the investment.

Suspension Training
Specialized straps connected to a door or ceiling allow you to use your own body weight as resistance. You can’t even imagine how many different muscle groups can get a workout using these simple bands. TRX is one of the most popular U.S. brands, 4DPro is an up-and-comer. TRX cord sets retail for anywhere from $150 to $250 (in my opinion, they are well worth the investment). They are often used in rehab settings by athletic trainers and physical therapists but they also make a fun and non-cumbersome addition to a home gym. You can find instructional videos to help plan workout routines online.

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Market Watch: Goat’s Milk Feta

by in Farmers' Market Finds, July 20, 2013

cheese
Sometimes I go to the farmers’ market in search of items that have nothing to do with produce. Local farmers often have other goodies like meats, cheeses, eggs, honey and baked goods to offer. On a recent trip to my favorite market I picked up a package of a profoundly delicious cheese: feta made from local goat’s milk.

Originating in Greece, feta cheese has been made for centuries. Classically made with sheep’s milk, some versions may also be a combination of both sheep and goat’s milk. Newer versions of this cheese from countries other than Greece may also be made with cow’s milk. Curds of the cheese are pressed together into blocks and stored in brine, which contributes to feta’s unique tangy flavor.

Cheese lovers will also be happy to know that feta is naturally lower in calories. One ounce of feta contains 40 fewer calories and 3 fewer grams of fat than the same portion of cheddar.

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22 Healthy Zucchini Recipes

by in Healthy Recipes, In Season, July 18, 2013

zucchini salad

It’s prime season for summer squash, and like most folks, I get all jazzed up when the zucchini harvest arrives. Here are 22 healthy ways to devour this summer goodie.

Soups, Salads, Snacks … and a Cocktail!
Zucchini is the chameleon of the produce world, adapting to any surrounding flavor and texture. It’s tremendously delish raw or cooked, shredded or sliced, roasted or pureed.

Mains
Who says a zucchini can’t be a meal?! These recipes prove this veggie is up to the challenge.

Sides
There’s nothing wrong with going the more traditional route. These simple side dishes turn up the flavor.

Breads and Muffins
Don’t count out the baked goods. Zucchini adds a subtle sweetness and helps keeps breads and muffins moist.

Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, ATC, is a registered dietitian, certified athletic trainer and owner of Dana White Nutrition, Inc., which specializes in culinary and sports nutrition. See Dana’s full bio »

Diet 101: Flat Belly Diet

by in Diets & Weight Loss, July 17, 2013

avocados
Seems like everyone has been asking me about ways to lose belly fat lately. Is the Flat Belly Diet the way? And which foods does the diet recommend? Find out.

Overview
From the editors of Prevention magazine, the Flat Belly Diet claims that followers can lose up to 15 pounds in 32 days. Researched in part by a registered dietitian (always a good thing), the plan focuses on taking in monounsaturated fats (MUFAs) from foods like oils, nuts and seeds, olives, avocado and dark chocolate. The author promises that dieters will want to follow this type of eating for the long haul.

The Plan
This 32-day plan includes a “Four Day Anti-Bloat Jumpstart” followed by a 4-week program. The jump start banishes caffeine and most sources of sodium from the diet to help promote a loss of water weight. The four-day meal plan is made up of low-fat foods, a minimal amount of starchy carbs and lots of lean protein and fruits and vegetables. Dieters must also guzzle “Sassy Water,” a concoction of water flavored with ginger, lemon, cucumber and mint created by contributing dietitian Cynthia Sass.

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Taste Test: Bottled Lemon Iced Tea

by in Taste Test, July 17, 2013

lemon iced tea
Looking for a refreshing beverage to beat the summer heat? See the results of this taste test before popping open a bottle of sweetened iced tea.

The Criteria
This taste test focused on sweetened teas with lemon (no other flavors for this challenge). Close attention was paid to ingredient quality, calories and sugar, and each tea was rated using a 5-point scale (5 being the highest). Although the teas came in various sized containers, all teas were scaled to 16-fluid ounces, the most popular size.

One thing that varied widely was sugar content, something worth keeping an eye on. The tea with the highest amount contained 48 grams, while the top-rated bottle had fewer than 10 grams. (To help put things in perspective, a 16-ounce soda/cola contains 52 grams of sugar.)

Here’s how the teas stacked up!

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Aronia: The New Superfood?

by in Food News, July 16, 2013

aronia berries
A buzz is brewing over this tiny berry. Have you heard about Aronia yet?

What is Aronia?
Unlike the majority of popular super fruits (think acai and pomegranate), this berry is native to North America. States like Iowa and Ohio have been growing quite a bit of it in recent years. Aronia melanocarpa (its proper botanical name) is also grown around the globe in countries like Denmark and Russia. Sometimes referred to as “chokeberry,” these deep black-ish purple berries look similar to blueberries but have a much more sharp and sour flavor.

Aronia Products
Aronia juice seems to be the most popular form out there; it’s often blended with sweeter flavors like apple and grape juices. Juice isn’t the only way to get some of this berry. Capsules, teas, syrups and even food colorings are some of the newer products beginning to hit the market. But why the hype?

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