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Blog for Wednesday, March 9 2016

Good evening, and welcome to today's blog. Hope it finds you feeling well! Here in the Tri-Cities, we're in the midst of a beautiful week, with spring technically just a couple weeks away. Also, today is Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day, (which we'll get back to!), so if you know an RDN, be sure and show them your appreciation. So, our first story of the day tells you about 8 foods that are good for heart health, that you might have been unaware of. Chia seeds, coconut water, shellfish, canned tuna, and oatmeal all received mention, but the most surprising to me were lean beef and eggs. These are 2 foods that were long considered "no-no's" due to their fat content. The specific benefits of each are mentioned, as well as some serving suggestions. Next up, this article discussed a study that found that 58% of calories consumed by Americans came from "ultra-processed" foods. These are the types of things that line the aisles of your local gas station, and seem to have an unnatural shelf-life. This is a rather disturbing revelation, as ultra-processed food consumption is associated with many chronic health problems, such as obesity, heart disease, and diabetes. It's diametrically opposed to the "whole-foods" approach many nutritionists and dietitians extol. The only encouraging part is that the data used in the study was from 2009-2010, so hopefully this is a dying trend. Our third article today has some advice for those of who might consider a low-carb diet. First of all, know what a "carb" is. It's actually a broader category of food than you might think, as fruits and vegetables are both considered "carbs". Obviously fruits and vegetables are not something you want to nix from your diet. Rather, "refined grains" are what you should cut down on. A "refined grain" is a grain that has had the bran and germ removed, and has fewer vitamins, minerals, and fiber than its unprocessed version. Many products are even marketed as being "whole-grain" through deceptive wording, when in fact they are made from "refined grains". Some key deceptive wordings may include: "100 percent wheat", " Made from whole grain", "contains whole grain", "made with whole wheat", etc. Knowing what to avoid can help make your low-carb diet more successful. Lastly,  here's a post from the USDA's website regarding National Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day! If you've ever wondered what an RDN is, or does, this article will tell you a bit about them. For one, they're involved in many government programs, such as WIC, or SNAP that try to encourage people to eat more healthily. That's all for today, folks! Go hug an RDN, whip up some chia pudding, and be healthy, my friends!

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