Weight Management

Preventing and reversing diabetes

08/12/2018 Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina and Brenda Davis Since 2000, the number of people in Canada with diabetes has doubled. Today, one in three Canadians lives with prediabetes or diabetes. Those 20-year-olds now have a 50-50 chance of developing the disease. The risk for some indigenous people is 80 per cent. Close to 40 per cent of newly diagnosed cases occur in seniors. Diabetes is a metabolic disorder that diminishes the… Read More »Preventing and reversing diabetes

Why go more plant-based?

05/06/2018 Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina A half century ago, vegetarian and vegan diets were viewed with concern by health professionals. In decades since, these have been the focus of vast amounts of research. Today, a dietary shift in the direction of plant foods is regarded as a very positive step by knowledgeable dietitians, MDs, nutritional scientists and by a growing number of the general public. Why the shift? Reduced risk… Read More »Why go more plant-based?

Coconut oil or coconut?

01/11/2018 Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina and Brenda Davis Few foods are at once maligned and acclaimed as much as coconut oil. Some see it as a notorious health villain, with an even greater concentration of saturated fat than butter or lard. It tops the list of foods to avoid in many heart-health programs. At the other end of the spectrum are those who view coconut oil as a fountain of youth,… Read More »Coconut oil or coconut?

Healthy snacking

10/11/2017 Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina Do you ever eat mindlessly? It would be very surprising if even one reader replied, “No, never.” So if we are occasionally going to eat mindlessly, we may as well eat food that offers a big boost to our health. Chopping veggies on a regular basis, storing them in ziplock bags and gathering tasty dips is a winning approach. Serve a platter of colourful, cut… Read More »Healthy snacking

It’s the Year of Pulses

15/07/2016 +Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina MS, RD • The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has named 2016 the International Year of Pulses. Pulses are edible seeds that grow in pods – peas, beans, lentils. They are also known as legumes. Pulses are packed with nutrients, especially B vitamins (thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, B6, and folate) and minerals (iron, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, and zinc). Their high iron content is especially beneficial for… Read More »It’s the Year of Pulses

Dairy-free and delicious

07/05/2016 FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina & Dave Shishkoff • Last month, I had the pleasure of being a presenter at the Dairy-Free Living course – complete with tastings – at Vancouver’s Central Library. One thing is now clear: there is an abundance of delicious, healthful dairy alternatives. Vancouver is home to several independent non-dairy milk and nut-based companies that produce a pleasing array of cheeses. There’s also a completely vegan ice cream… Read More »Dairy-free and delicious

Healthy snacks offer benefits

01/02/2016 FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina MS, RD • Can snacking be a key ingredient in a healthy lifestyle? If your first response was “No!” here’s a chance to update your perceptions. Some of us were raised with the advice to “never eat between meals,” which makes sense in protecting our teeth from sweets. Yet there can be significant advantages to snacking on healthy foods. Researchers have found that eating frequent mini-meals offers… Read More »Healthy snacks offer benefits

Shaping up in 2016 with renewed diet and fitness practices

01/01/2016 FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina MS, RD • At this time of year, it can be invigorating to renew our diet and fitness practices. This might involve shedding a few pounds, eating more veggies, gaining muscle strength and posting regular dates for exercise on the calendar. One goal might be to get in shape. Belly fat or visceral fat (meaning fat in and around body organs) is far more dangerous to… Read More »Shaping up in 2016 with renewed diet and fitness practices

The Beefs about Beef

By Vesanto Melina, MS, Registered Dietitian When barbecue season comes along, we may have fond memories of summer events with meat sizzling over the coals. Yet there are great reasons to cook up something else that is superbly tasty and less potentially carcinogenic for summer get-togethers. Recent information from the Harvard-based Health Professionals Follow-up Study which observed 37,698 men for more than a dozen years and from the Nurses’ Health… Read More »The Beefs about Beef

The Real Paleo Diet

By Vesanto Melina, MS, Registered Dietitian   Paleolithic diets are the subject of many websites and books. However I have yet to meet or hear of anyone who follows anything even close to a real paleo diet. The paleo wanna-be’s who head to their butcher for grass fed beef buy a product with 5 times the fat content of wild game that had to run to elude predators. Today’s pseudo-paleos… Read More »The Real Paleo Diet