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Dietetics

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Research illustrates that negative side effects are a common outcome of eating poorly and skipping meals. A study published in the British Journal of Health Psychology found that over the course of a 13-day monitoring period, food choices of study participants dramatically influenced their daily experiences. The more fruits and vegetables participants consumed during the day, the happier, more engaged and more creative they were while working.

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Feed your dog additional calories if he spends a lot of time outdoors. It takes more energy in the winter to keep body temperature regulated, so more calories are necessary.

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It’s also helpful to consider the emotional aspects of being on a vegan diet. If your family is not vegan and your child is asking to be, it’s important to understand why. The reasons may be perfectly fine and healthy, but some children, especially teens, choose vegan diets in order to lose weight. If you suspect that your child may have an eating disorder, talk to your doctor.

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"Even if you aren't going anywhere except to the dining room table for school, planning is important," said Kristi King, senior pediatric dietitian at Texas Children's Hospital and an Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics spokesperson.

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“Superfood” has become a frequently used marketing term, but Blatner says the term is overused, and points out that it may be found on the packages of highly processed foods that just happen to contain a superfood ingredient. “Since there is no legal definition, it’s definitely a buyer-beware situation,” Blatner said. She said it’s important to read the list of ingredients on the label to make food decisions, and offers this tip: “Most superfoods don’t come in a package or have a label.”

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One purported health benefit attached to many superfoods is that they offer protection against metabolic syndrome — a cluster of conditions, including high blood pressure, high blood sugar and abnormal cholesterol levels — that increases your risk of Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. However, these claims are frequently not strongly supported by scientific evidence, especially not by controlled human intervention trials.

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Drinking plenty of water can help keep your body functioning at its highest capacity. Staying hydrated can help you to:

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Research shows that, for adults, taking a daily vitamin D supplement of 400 to 2,000 IU can help prevent respiratory infections like the common cold, says Amy Gorin, MS, RDN, a registered dietitian nutritionist in the NYC area.

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How to boost your immune system? Here's a look at dietary supplements proven most effective at enhancing your immunity to infectious diseases.

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Dark chocolate is gaining a reputation as a heart-healthy food, and research suggests that there might be some substance behind those claims.

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There are so many different opinions about what you should and shouldn't eat. How does one determine what information is reliable? It's definitely a challenge.

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Do you enjoy an occasional-- or frequent-- square or two of dark chocolate? If so, you are far from alone. "I see it just as a pleasure, nothing to feel guilty about," says Ginger Hultin, M.S., R.D.N., owner of Champagne Nutrition in Seattle and a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

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There are many varieties of lettuce, but the most common in grocery stores are romaine, iceberg, butter lettuce and green leaf. The nutritional values vary, but most types of lettuce are high in fiber, vitamins A and C, calcium, potassium, folate and iron and are low in calories.

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