Apple Oatmeal Quick Bread

The remedy for these chilly winter days is cozy afternoons spent tinkering in the kitchen.
Time to try a new recipe.
Apple Oatmeal Quick Bread
Taken from a Stonyfield Oikos coupon
1 cup plain Oikos Organic Greek Yogurt (I used regular plain yogurt)
1 cup quick-cooking oats
1 egg
1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup diced apple, peeled or unpeeled
In small bowl, mix yogurt and oats.  Set aside.  
In large bowl, mix together egg, oil and brown sugar.  Stir in flours, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, and yogurt mixture (batter will be lumpy).  
Fold in apples.  Pour into greased loaf pan.

Heat oven to 350.  Bake for 45 minutes, or until golden brown, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.  Remove from pan immediately.  
Makes 12 servings.
Serve warm, or enjoy toasted with a smear of jam or butter. 

Nutritional info per serving: 180 calories, 6g total fat, 28g carbohydrate, 4g protein, 2g fiber.
Any new eats or treats this weekend?

Exercise as a Commodity: Paying For Fitness

flickr photo credit to Catherine's Landing
If exercise is a commodity, how much will you pay for it?  
Apparently some people are willing to invest quite a tidy sum of money.  
This week I read an intriguing article in the Boston Globe about a new start-up called Gym-Pact.  Gym-Pact is an exercise accountability program which requires its members to shell out a $25 penalty fee every time they skip a work-out.  
Gym-Pact originated from Harvard College graduate Yifan Zhang, who stumbled upon the idea during a behavioral economics class.  Zhang was convinced that people are more motivated by immediate consequences than by future possibilities.  Together with classmate Geoff Oberhofer, Zhang created Gym-Pact and started negotiations between gyms and participating members. 
Click here to read complete coverage from The Boston Globe. 
flickr photo sourced from bangkokrecorder
Compelling article!  I have never framed exercise as an economic commodity, but isn't this is what Gym-Pact implies?  On one hand, exercise has become extremely valuable due to its health benefits.  An exercise investment can only grow profitably as obesity and its co-morbidities continue to increase.  However exercise is costly; in the midst of our busy lives, we must purposefully set aside time and resources to get moving.

Kenneth J. Carpenter, PhD noted the historical shift from physical activity to inactivity in his article "A Short History of Nutrition Science" written in 2003.  Carpenter notes, "[In the 1980s] the problem of obesity was still growing, and nutritional science had not been able to come up with an easily adopted solution for people with a sedentary lifestyle.  As technology advanced, the human machine remained the same.  [Back then] a few people were [starting to reverse] the traditional work-rest cycle, i.e. doing their work (and associated travel) sitting down, and spending their breaks on a treadmill."  Now in the 21st century, it seems the work-rest cycle is completed reversed!

What do you think of a program such as Gym-Pact?
What are your thoughts on exercise as a commodity?
Thanks for reading,

** Carpenter, KJ.  A Short History of Nutrition Science: Part 4 (1945-1985).  Journal of Nutrition.  (2003) 133: 3331-3342.

Lesson 8: Iron Out the Wrinkles

"Oh dear," I thought, as I tugged my white lab coat from the laundry.  "It's been quite some time since my last hospital rotations.  My coat is wrinkled, my notes are crumpled, and my clinical common sense is no where to be found."  After four months away from the hospital, January marks my return to the pediatric floors.  With mixed trepidation and excitement, I washed my white coat and smoothed out the creases.  Time to re-entered the world of TPN recs and tube feed calculations.

After two weeks I'm grateful to report that I'm loving the peds floors.  Hats off to a fabulous preceptor, a gracious medical team, and the endearing kiddos!  However I'm still having trouble ironing out the wrinkles of my memory.  It's alarming how quickly I've forgotten the minutia of medications and formulas.  But I take heart.  I remind myself that this journey ends at competency, not perfection.
Boston State House on the Commons
Clinical Nutrition Resources for Pediatrics
These resources have proved useful thus far.
I would love to hear your opinions and exchange resources please!
  • Pediatric Nutrition Reference Guide, 9th Edition, Texas Children's Hospital
  • ADA Pediatric Manuel of Clinical Dietetics
  • Nestle Nutrition, Pediatric Nutrition Helpful Hints (fold-out)
With yet another snow storm this weekend and temps below zero, Boston's forecast looks grim.  This month my Sorel snow boots have quickly become my most valuable investment!

Any nutrition and pediatrics references to recommend?
Are you staying toasty and dry this weekend?

Keeping Up with Health News: 4 Easy Tips!

flickr photo by B.K.Dewey
Tick tick tick.  The 24-news cycle never ends, and keeping up with the latest health news is harder than ever.  As part of the new year, I will be adding a new role as the Nutrition Newsbites editor for my graduate school newsletter.  I am excited to tackle this task, and eager to share my game plan for tracking the constantly churning health news scene.  I hope these tips are helpful, but I desperately need your suggestions as well! 
Four Easy Ways to Keep Up with Health News
flickr photo by RandyA38
1. Email List-serves, E-newsletters
Signing up for free emails through various health organizations or news services is an easy way to get a daily dose of health updates.  I enjoy Smartbrief, an email service that offers links news articles.  Search by industry: restaurant, nutrition, social media, food service, nursing, health care, and much more.  Other suggestions...

The Daily News from the American Dietetic Association offers a succinct daily summary of nutrition, dietetics, and food service articles.  (ADA membership is required for this one.)

Evidence updates - a daily email from the British Medical Journal group that provides links to newly published medical research from major journals.   You can customize to specific areas of medicine and varying levels of newsworthiness.

Eurekalerts - Not an email alert, but a great site for press releases.  Spanning all topics including general science, health, nutrition, agriculture, education, and more.

2. TOC [Table of Contents] Subscriptions
Stay fresh with breaking research from your favorite journals.  Subscribing to a journal's Table of Contents (it's free!) often allows you to glimpse the upcoming articles before release of the print edition.  Full access to the journal requires a paid subscription, however it is worthwhile to read the research abstracts.  With more than 5,400 worldwide life sciences journals, it is helpful to identify one or two journals that apply to your specific practice or interests.
General recommendations:
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
New England Journal of Medicine (love the weekly resident teaching lessons)
Journal of the American Medical Association (love the JAMA patient page)
Journal of Nutrition
Nutrition Today

3. Google Reader
This service stores your favorite websites, health bloggers, and news organizations in one place, making for easy and efficient reading!  It automatically updates with each new post or article.
4. Customize Your Internet Homepage
Setting your web homepage to a news organization is a simple way to keep your finger on the pulse of consumer health news.  When I go online, my webpage is set to the New York Times Health section so that I can quickly glance at any breaking health feature articles.
I've gleaned these resources from classmates and mentors throughout the past 3 semesters of grad school.  But I'm sure eager to hear your opinions and further suggestions.
In particular, know any good news sources for farming and food policy?

Cheers to a new year!  
Disclaimer. I am not a Registered Dietitian yet. I provide nutrition information intended for the general public, not for the treatment of a specific medical condition. I try to use scientific research and reliable sources when forming my opinions and messages.
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