Here for your nutritional needs
As an in-store registered dietitian, I have received countless questions from customers and clients over the years. When it comes to food and nutrition, people really have a wide variety of concerns for themselves and their families. But there are some questions that I hear over and over again. So today I’m sharing answers to some of the most commonly asked questions that I get during in-store conversations, at one-on-one consults and on my social media. First things first: it’s important to remember nutrition is not always one-size fits all and the answers to many questions depend on different factors. For that reason, my responses are not all definitive. If you have specific questions regarding the information I’m sharing, reach out using my contacts below. Q: How many calories should I be eating? A: Your energy needs (measured in calories) depend on a variety of factors including your age, size, body composition, activity level, hormonal health and goals. You can use a variety of different equations and calculators to estimate your needs; however, this isn’t necessarily very helpful as most people aren’t aware of how many calories they are consuming (nor do you necessarily need to know). A good rule is to look at the amount of food you are consistently eating and make changes from there. For example, if your weight and body composition are staying roughly the same over time, you are most likely in an energy balance. If you’d like to make changes, you can slowly increase or decrease portion sizes from there. Learning to eat mindfully and paying attention to your hunger and fullness cues is another tool you can use to give your body the right amount of energy it needs. Q: How many eggs can I eat? A: For most people eggs can be consumed daily, if desired. The yolk of an egg is high in dietary cholesterol, but this has been shown to have less effect on our blood cholesterol levels than saturated fat. In addition, whole eggs contain important nutrients including protein, iron and choline. Q: Are all processed foods bad for me? A: It may depend on what you consider processed foods, but the quick answer is no. Processed foods can include items like whole grain bread, yogurt, pre-boiled eggs and even balanced frozen meals. If incorporating processed foods can help make meal times less stressful and more sustainable for you, then that’s a good thing. When purchasing processed foods, be on the lookout for high levels of sodium, saturated fat and added sugar and try to choose those items less often. Q: What is the best diet to follow? A: There is no “one diet fits all.” I recommend choosing a style of eating that provides you with the nutrients you need and that is enjoyable and sustainable long term! Working with a registered dietitian can help you figure out how to best meet your nutritional needs and health goals in ways that can also be enjoyable to maintain. Heather Barnes is a registered dietitian with Atlantic Superstore in Halifax. Do you have a nutrition health goal in mind? Contact her by phone at 902-401-3869, email email@example.com or book online at bookadietitian. ca. All in-store group events and presentations have been cancelled until further notice.