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Robinsbite: October 2010

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A Personal Snacking Story from Guest Blogger Corinne Dobbas, MS, RD

Snacking is Sensational & Preparation is Pertinent!

This past weekend I was on a mission to go pumpkin picking. I was fantasizing about hot apple cider dazzling my palate and warming my belly, golden leaves crushing beneath my feet, farmers dressed in overalls and plaid shirts, and children giggling and poking their heads through those wooden “faceless” characters pretending they’re a witch. Uh—doesn’t this pumpkin patch sound phenomenal?!?! It’s the best! And after years of living in Boston—now that I moved back to the San Francisco Bay Area—I was finally able to make my long awaited visit!
However—my visit still remains long awaited! I had grabbed my camera, got my fall gear on, and was ready to get set and go. But, the traffic wasn’t. What normally was a 45 minute drive took over FOUR hours! By the time I had crossed the Golden Gate Bridge, the Sonoma-based pumpkin patch was closed!

When It Comes to Snacking & Preparing, I Should Take My Own Advice!

Why do to I tell you this story of my pumpkin woes? Because simply put—I wasn’t prepared for a four hour car ride! So—not only was I sad, but more importantly, I was dying of hunger!  And when food finally came around I ate much more than I would have than if I had had a snack, and I will not lie, I felt guilty! I always tell my clients to have snacks on hand no matter what—so whether stuck in a meeting, at work, or in traffic—they have something to nosh and can stay on track. I had nothing to munch and ended up with the infamous “see food, eat food” mentality. Yes, it was healthy food—but still.

Snack Talk

What I should have done is what I tell my clients and what I usually do, but this time didn’t (woe is me). I should have had a snack on hand and been prepared for anything. 
So—let’s talk snacks! With snacks, the basic rule of thumb is to combine a high-fiber carb (think fruits, veggies, whole grains) with a little protein to keep you satisfied. And if your meals are longer than four hours apart, you need a snack. If lunch is at noon and dinner is at seven, my gosh—you need a healthy eat to keep you energized, your blood-sugar even keeled, and most importantly, from overdoing it at the next meal.  And if you’re watching your waistline, keep your snacks to about 200 calories.
Some examples of portable snacks are a piece of fruit with about 10 nuts, low-fat string cheese, or Greek yogurt; an apple with one tablespoon of nut butter (Justin’s Nut Butter has fabulous to-go nut butter packs);  half a turkey sandwich on whole wheat; a bar when in need (Lara and Luna are my top picks); or even  ½ cup of beans (they have protein, fiber, and carbs—stick in a small container and go!).
But don’t forget, the other piece of this, preparation! Think making time and finding to-go containers, lunch boxes, or a small cooler—whatever you need to make good nutrition happen because eating healthfully is not all about what we know, but what we do. And hey—if you’re out and about, prepare lunch and bring with too! You can then be in control of the ingredients you’re noshing. Always a plus!

Lessons Learned

What have I learned from this ordeal? Take my own advice—it’s actually pretty gosh darn good. Always bring snacks and be prepared to expect the unexpected. Another big lesson I failed to mention is to always go to the bathroom before you leave on any trip that could possibly be longer than 30 minutes. After two cups of coffee and a liter of water, my bladder was about to explode!!!! Man—I had no idea having to go the bathroom could ever hurt so bad!
Ultimately, bring healthy snacks with you when you travel and always hit up the restroom before you leave. A grumbling tummy and an aching bladder serve you no good!
Corinne Dobbas, MS, RD believes that optimal health starts with the activity that you do every day—eat. You can find Corinne counseling and speaking in the San Francisco Bay Area. You can also find her blogging about nutrition, health, and wellness at Green Grapes Blog. If you’re interested in working with Corinne, check out her services at Nutrition with Corinne. Corinne specializes in weight management, behavior change, disordered eating, disease-preventive nutrition, sports nutrition, family wellness, and heart health.
Follow Corinne on Twitter @RDCorinne
And become a fan of Corinne’s page, Green Grapes Nutrition, to have some healthy fun!


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Monday, October 25, 2010

Behind the Scenes with NBC's The Biggest Loser Nutritionist Cheryl Forberg, RD

Spend your morning with Cheryl Forberg, RD, Chef, Award Winning Cookbook Author and Nutritionist for NBC’s The Biggest Loser 

Learn weight loss tips Cheryl teaches to the BL contestants and ask your burning questions about behind the scenes at the Ranch. Enjoy a full breakfast complete with Cheryl’s pumpkin polenta!


Tuesday, November 2, 2010
SYSCO Dallas
800 Trinity Drive
Lewisville, TX  75056
 Tickets are $25.00
Make your reservation today at:


All proceeds support the American Institute of Wine and Food’s Days of Taste Program.

What is Days of Taste?
Days of Taste® is a national discovery-based program of The American Institute of Wine & Food, modeled after a French program called “Journée de Gout,” which also means “Days of Taste.”  Designed for fourth and fifth grade students to learn about food and how it weaves its way through daily life from farm to table, it has become a signature program of The AIWF.  The first Days of Taste® took place in New York City in the fall of 1995, after evolving from many early AIWF initiatives examining issues of health, nutrition and feeding children, and collaborations with other organizations.

Days of Taste Dallas
Held at the Dallas Farmer’s Market, Days of Taste provides a unique field trip  experience for 4th and 5th grade elementary students in Dallas public schools.  Through the program, students have the opportunity to explore the nuances of taste through the five senses with a tasting component guided by a chef, a visit with a local farmer to discover the wealth and variety of products grown and that are available locally, and prepare a Harvest salad using fresh produce that the they have purchased themselves at the Dallas Farmer’s Market. Volunteer chefs, growers, producers and others share their enthusiasm for fresh ingredients, cooking, and love of food. The program teaches kids the concept of “from farm to table”-one that is difficult for kids to grasp these days.

Thank you to our generous sponsors:

  • Dallas Dietetic Association
  • American Institute of Wine and Food
  • Webnoxious  
  • Petals and Stems Florist
  • Designs by MichelleRose

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Tuesday, October 19, 2010

An Open Apology to the Spaghetti Squash

Dear Spaghetti Squash-
I'm so sorry I made you so mad. I know, I know....its that time of the year, isn't it?  I pay no attention to you all year until Fall when you are most abundant, most flavorful and let's face it, cheaper.   

Sure, you are a little large and sometimes hard to find in the grocery stores. I know people just walk past you--its not you though, it's them. They just don't know how to handle you or know what to do with you. I wish I could tell everyone just how easy you are to handle and that your deliciousness comes through when baked or microwaved. Or that you bring a smile to everyone-young and old-when I comb your lovely strands of flesh out with a fork.  You blend ever so sweetly with any kind of marinara or spaghetti sauce and take to a sprinkling of Parmesan ever so gently. You are full of fiber, vitamins and minerals (Vitamin A, Vitamin C and calcium) and have only 42 calories per cup.
In fact, if you compare yourself to pasta (which you really shouldn't as you both have exceptionally redeeming qualities), you are lower in calories, lower in fat and lower in carbohydrates.  You can save 179 calories per cup by hanging out with you.

So I apologize to you, my friend. I hope you can forgive me. I promise to pay more attention to you now that you are front and center. I get that you are angry--but did you really have to do this to my microwave today?

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Sunday, October 3, 2010

Hey, J. Dorian Chocolatier 85% Dark Chocolate Bar-I'm Your Newest Fan

I am not a fan of dark chocolate. There-I said it. Judge me if you must.  I know it's better for me-full of antioxidants, heart protecting goodness and less sugar, etc. but put me in a milk chocolate vs. dark chocolate situation and milk is going to win every time. Or so I thought.

Ever heard of J. Dorian Chocolatier? It's a Dallas based company with a huge mail order business of-you guessed it-hand crafted chocolate. The shop also produced amazing wedding, birthday and celebration cakes and a chocolate cookie that I cannot resist. Oh, and some unbelievable cupcakes, too.  Owned and operated by the nicest guy you'll ever meet-Dorian Eisenberg-this little shop has taken off like gang busters.  And I know why.

I popped in the other day--I was in the neighborhood--and Dorian introduced me to his custom blend 85% dark chocolate bar. Since I was taught to have manners and because its really hard to say no to someone who is offering you his hand made chocolate bar, I took it graciously. In my mind, I knew I was going to give it to a friend of mine who loves chocolate and who happens to have diabetes.

Dorian decided to create his own dark chocolate bar in response to all of the 80% bars he'd sampled over the years.  They were too bitter and not smooth at all, he explained. He upped the ante to 85% and found the smooth texture and sweetness he was looking for in a dark chocolate.  The increase in cacao mass in the 85% bar means its got more antioxidants and less sugar--which is better for a person with diabetes, he explained.  More flavor also means less is required to satisfy that chocolate craving.  Dorian knows his nutrition as he has been living with and managing his diabetes for 13 years. 

I took the bar home and gave it to my friend. She wanted me to taste it with her and I couldn't say no.  It's no wonder that Dorian sells hundreds of these bars every week. Delicious-smooth and creamy texture with just a hint of bitterness (I was expecting full on face contorting bitterness).  It was bliss--and I was satisfied after only 1 square. (1 oz is all that is recommended for nutritional health!). Next time I'm met with a dark chocolate vs. milk chocolate situation, the dark chocolate will win.  Only if its J. Dorian's 85% Dark Chocolate bar, that is.

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