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Boost or Ensure?

23 Apr

At our last meeting, a few dedicated SLUDA members had the opportunity to sample a few food products.  You can probably guess from the title that two of these items were Boost and Ensure.  These are two nutritional supplements that we are likely as RDs to recommend to patients during our career.  Should we know what these taste like if we are going to tell our patients to drink them?  You bet!

We also added in a bit of an odd ball pairing of hip food products, chia seeds and PB2.

Chia seeds are the latest super food.   These seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, specifically alpha linolenic acid (ALA).  How does chia compare to flax?  You do not need to grind the chia seeds, making it a bit easier to get those omega 3s.

As for the PB2,  I could not resist adding this to the list. PB2 is powdered peanut butter. Slow roasted peanuts are pressed to remove the oil.  The result is an all-natural powder with all of the delicious roasted peanut butter goodness but with nearly 85% less fat calories.  Crazy right?   For peanut butter addicts (you know who you are), this is a revelation.  PB2 can be eaten reconstituted in water (tastes a lot like peanut butter) or added to recipes, such as smoothies, which is what we did for the tasting.  We had a simple banana smoothie (supposedly the Best Chiquita Banana Smoothie recipe) so we could try both the PB2 and chia seed blended into it.   The smoothies were not a hit.  Perhaps it was the blending method (Robot coupe – see note about technical difficulties) or the recipe (sorry Chiquita) but quite a bit of the banana smoothie was discarded.

The highlight of the tasting was the comparison between Boost and Ensure.  Both nutritional supplements were chocolate flavored but not equal.  5 out of 6 SLUDA tasters * preferred Ensure.  Why?  Because Ensure tasted more like chocolate milk, of course!  Boost was described as chalky and malt-flavored.  The small number of tasters did allow for a bit of experimentation.  This included adding PB2 to the Ensure, resulting in peanut butter and chocolate together in a creamy drink.  Delicious.

Technical difficulties** aside, this was a fun activity.  We were a bit chaotic with our sampling but we had a small number of tasters.  With a larger group, it was suggested that we sample in an orderly fashion and discuss each item before moving on to the next.  This is a great idea!  Also, for simplicity, we kept the selection of food items small since it was our first SLUDA tasting.  However, with feedback like, “interesting”,  “fun” and “good idea”, this is an activity that should be repeated and with more variety!

Are there any new foods that you would like to try?  Send your suggestions so the SLUDA eboard can plan the next one.

*OK so we only had a total of 6 people tasting and it certainly was not a representative sample of SLUDA.

** The food lab blender is missing the rubber ring and, yeah, it is crucial that it be in place.  Instructions here:

Never seen PB2 or chia seeds?  Here they are.

PB2 Image


Chia seeds

Chia seeds


Empty Bowls Fundraiser

19 Mar

Empty Bowls Logo
“50.1 million Americans struggle to put food on the table”.

Be a hero.  Buy a bowl.  Save a life.

The St. Louis University Dietetic Association is conducting an Empty Bowls fundraiser March 19-21. Buy an empty bowl to fight hunger in America and receive a 50% voucher for delicious soup from Pickleman’s!

Pickleman's Gourmet Cafe Logo

Hand-painted bowls will be sold from 12-5 PM at the following locations:
March 19 – Busch Student Center
March 20/ 21 – Fresh Gatherings (Medical Campus)

Vouchers can be redeemed at Pickleman’s March 19-21.

Flying Cow Frozen Yogurt Company Logo

Do you want to do more?
Flying Cow will donate part of their proceeds to Empty Bowls on March 20 from 7 – 10 pm.

Stop by and enjoy frozen yogurt for a good cause!

All money raised will be donated to a local food bank.
Contact if you have any questions!

Tips for Working with the Media & Cookie Decorating

13 Jan
After decorating cookies, SLUDA members gathered in front of the tree for a festive photo!

After decorating cookies, SLUDA members gathered in front of the tree for a festive photo!

What do you think of when I say “Dietitians in the Media”? That was the question posed by Lauren Landfried to start her discussion about the role of the RD in communicating nutrition information through media channels.
Do we see enough RDs in this expert role? No. We do not see enough RDs, the nutrition experts, speaking in the media but we should!

Lauren has appeared on several local news channels:

  • Fox 2 News in the Morning with Tim Ezzel in a 3-part segment on the N&D Garden covering background on the garden, disability access and the chickens as well as a feature on local Let’s Move activities.
  • Channel 11, 2 and 5 to promote Food Day
  • Channel 9 discussing Food Security

Here are her tips for working with the media:

  1. Be prepared for EVERYTHING!  Do your research!
  2. Be confident! You are the expert!  Your lack of confidence will show.
  3. Smile and dress professional. Even for radio interviews!
  4. Have fun! You are entering a cool field.

Q&A with Lauren

Do you get nervous?
Yes. Every time. I freak out on the inside but I calm myself. I remind myself that I am the expert. I have never been asked anything I didn’t know but it is OK if it happens. Roll with it.

Looking back on your first interview, is there anything you wish you had done differently?

Hand motions don’t look so good on tv

What dietitian do you like to watch?
I just don’t see enough from the profession, so you should get inspired to lead the charge!!  Be proud of your profession.

The meeting was a joint session with the Culinary Club!  It is the first of many collaborations so be part of both!  Upcoming joint activities include swanky restaurant tours.  Stay tuned!  To learn more about the Culinary Club, search “SLU Culinary Club” on Facebook to locate their page.

We also voted on the new Service Committee leader and discussed a wish list for future meetings.

We topped it all off with icing, of course!  Check out some of the festive cookies (fashioned by Kimaya) and watch a clip of one of Lauren’s first on-camera interviews.

Have a wonderful holiday!
Holiday Cookies

Make a Difference Day 2012

1 Nov

Make a Difference Day at the Saint Louis Botanical Garden

What were you up to this weekend? Studying, baking, running, traveling? For over 3,000 SLU students the answer to this question is simple: participating in Make a Difference Day. For those who are Make A Difference Day (MADD) newbies, I will give you a quick rundown. One Saturday every October, thousands of SLU students rise early and come together to engage in service throughout the Saint Louis Community. Each year the event has a special theme. This year it was sustainability. Very fittingly, this year’s group of SLUDA volunteers was sent to the Missouri Botanical Gardens. Though a bit chilly, the day was gorgeous (see picture above), fun, and rewarding.

This weekend was the last for the Children’s garden so many activities were set up as a final goodbye to the flower-friendly weather. Stations included bouquet making, planting daffodil bulbs, face painting and—my personal favorite—tasting fresh vegetables grown right in the Botanical Gardens. It was great to see so many children out, active and eating fresh veggies. Surprisingly beets were very popular among the 10 and under crowd!

With the beautiful scenery, happy children and awesome volunteers, MADD at the Botanical Gardens was the perfect way to spend a Saturday. Hopefully I’ve enticed you to getting involved with this and other SLUDA community events. See you next year—bright and early—for MADD 2013!

Beth Grollmes is a sophomore majoring in Nutrition and Dietetics.  When she isn’t encouraging children to try new veggies, Beth can be found sipping cappuccinos or watching Friends.

SLU Fair

31 Aug

On Wednesday, SLUDA participated in the SLU Fair Ice Cream Social.

Local Ozark honey from Greenfield, MO was served at the SLUDA table as an ice cream topping.

The event generated a lot of interest in the organization.

Thanks to all of the members who came out to represent SLUDA and spread the word!Ozark Farms Honey