Pandas eating bambooThanksgiving is behind us but there are still lots of opportunities over-indulge in the next couple of weeks.  If you missed these tips on how to enjoy a feast without overeating, they will serve you well in the weeks to come.

This week’s podcast tackles an issue many of you have asked about: Can the phytoestrogens in soy affect kids, perhaps leading to early puberty? Here’s an overview  of the latest research.

This week’s Facepalm Award goes to the physician who advised his patient to choose white bread instead of whole grain bread because it is lower in gluten.  Here’s why this advice makes no sense.

And from the Department of Archane Nutrients, here’s a little primer on silica and what foods are good sources.  Hint: leave the bamboo to the panda bears.

Finally, here’s a great stocking stuffer for busy parents:  A gift subscription to Emeals healthy meal plans. Save 20% with coupon code HOLIDAY14






Pumpkin Avocado PeThe Thanksgiving holiday is behind us but another month of festive eating occasions lies ahead! If you’re on the hook to bring a dessert, try my “stealthy healthy” recipe for Pumpkin Avocado pie, with 40% less sugar than the usual.

(And if you’re still freaking out about how much you ate last week, here’s one from the archives that’s just for you.)

And for those nutritionally-inspired book lovers on your gift list, here’s my list of the best nutrition books of the year…all of which are more worth your time than the nutrition books that are on all the best-seller lists.

The evils of processed foods was a big theme in nutrition this year.  But all processed foods are not equally loathsome.  Some are even better off for the processing! Here’s a list of 4 questions that can help you decide whether a processed food is a good choice or not.

And speaking of processing, a reader wondered whether fish in pouches is better or worse (or just the same?) than canned fish. My response here.

For those of you who live in or will be visiting New York City, I will be Nutritionist in Residence at the Hotel Andaz Wall Street for their festive 12 Days of Andaz celebration this year. If you find yourself in the neighborhood, I’ll be holding some “nutrition office hours” at the hotel on Dec 21st and 22nd and would love it if you stopped into say Hi!


Tips for guilt- and stress-free holidays: My conversation with Kim Castle

by Monica Reinagel, MS, LDN on November 15, 2014


2 slices of pizza = 45 minutes jumping rope. Or does it?

As you know, I often advocate for the benefits of eating more protein. Yet some experts claim that Americans are already eating twice as much protein as they “should.”  Are we really hurting ourselves with too much protein or might the protein-bashers have another agenda? My thoughts here.

Meanwhile, CNN says we need to jump rope for 45 minutes every time we have pizza. But is it really necessary to “burn off” off the calories you eat? No: and here’s why.

As if I need another excuse to eat avocados, new research suggests that they aid in the conversion of beta-carotene into vitamin A. Read more.

And here’s some advice on what (not) to drink before bed if you suffer from reflux, plus a surprising remedy.


Click Here Red ButtonLists are king on the Internet! Although I rarely succumb to these things (preferring to labor in obscurity), I had fun putting together this (extremely click-worthy) list of 10 Easy Ways to Upgrade your Nutrition. What happened next made my jaw drop… ;-)

The tenth upgrade was actually a bait-and-switch: Instead of a tip from me, I asked readers to submit their best nutrition upgrades (yet another traffic-generating stratagem…what has gotten into me??). Here are the best of the Nutrition Diva community’s tips for upgrading your nutrition.

In honor of National Vegetarian Awareness Month, I dedicated this episode to vegan cooking tips for non-vegans, which led to this interview with the charming Kara Rota of the Clever Cookstr.

My recent show on artificial sweeteners and their effects on gut bacteria triggered a good question on the effect of sugar alcohols on gut flora.

And finally, if you read German, you might enjoy this recent interview with Thorsten Schröder of Die Zeit Magazine, who wonders, Is Soylent the End of Eating? 

Guten Appetit!


Monica Reinagel's Roasted Squash RecipeAs I mentioned in a recent podcast, I eat a lot fewer grain-based than I used to, which prompted one listener to ask what I eat instead?  If you are cutting back on grains, here are some ideas on what to replace them with. And here’s the recipe for the Roasted Butternut Squash that I mention in that episode.

I also got lots of requests to comment on the recent study showing that artificial sweeteners impair blood sugar tolerance. Could this finding reveal a hidden link between artificial sweeteners and weight gain? More will be revealed.

A lot of nondairy milks are fortified with calcium in order to make them more comparable to cow’s milk in that regard. But how well do you absorb calcium from fortified foods? Some label reading may be required.

And finally,  few seasonal topics from the archives:

How to Make Great Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

Should You Give Out Sugar-Free Candy on Halloween?

Halloween Survival Guide



Celebrating 300 episodes

by Monica Reinagel, MS, LDN on September 29, 2014

300th EpisodeRecently, my wonderful team at Quick and Dirty Tips and I celebrated a milestone: the 300th episode of the Nutrition Diva podcast! Over the past 6 years, the podcast has been downloaded over 18 million times, and I’ve had the opportunity to correspond and become friends with hundreds of listeners, readers, and colleagues. My cup runneth over! (And, thanks to my generous and festive friends at QDT, with a very nice Pinot Noir.)

To mark the occasion, I usedthe 300th podcast to reflect on ways that my own diet has changed over the past six years, in response to things I’ve learned or tried  while researching the podcast. Here, as well, are five things of the most important things I’ve learned about diet and nutrition over the past six years.

For the the 301st episode, I turned the tables and took a look at how America’s eating habits have changed over the past decade.  Also, as a quick follow up to a recent question on liquid smoke, here’s a Q&A on smoked fish: is it a healthy choice?.

I also had an opportunity to drop in on my friends at WOSU Radio in Columbus, Ohio, last week! I’ve been a regular guest on All Sides with Ann Fisher for a while now, talking about nutrition news and trends. Usually, however, I am speaking with Ann on the phone from my home in Baltimore. So it was a real treat to join Ann in the studio for a live segment. touching on the latest research on artificial sweeteners, snacking, fast food trends, and more. You can listen to the podcast of our conversation (or watch the video stream) on their website.

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My guest on last week’s show was psychologist Dr. Ellen Hendricksen, who gave us 9 signs of disordered eating and four tips for those who suspect that their relationship to food is not as healthy as it could be.  Great stuff, as always from the Savvy Psychologist!

For those who are curious about the 80/10/10 diet that seems to be making the rounds, here’s a look at the pros and cons of this new diet fad. (I’m not entirely sure it doesn’t satisfy one or two of the signs of disordered eating…)

A reader wonders whether there’s anything to the folk wisdom about eating black cherries to alleviate gout or arthritis.  And another wrote to ask whether liquid smoke flavoring is safe to use.

Finally, here’s a little something I’ve been working on: a fun little mobile app that calculates your “nutritional grade point average.” Still needs a little work but what do you think so far? View it in iTunes.