What is in your Gut?

June 13, 2017

by Susan Klick, MSN, RN, CNL

Your gut carries about six pounds of a diverse group of bacterias, known as “gut microbiobes” which are responsible for many things. These six pounds of gut microbiobes form our gut microbiome which helps to protect us against outside bacteria, support our immune systems, and help us to use different vitamins and regulate hormones. Now, recent studies are finding that some microbes may play a role in insulin sensitivity and metabolism.

New research is suggesting that in addition to genetics and lifestyle (physical inactivity and poor diet), certain gut microbes may cause an inflammation in the body that affect liver and fat cells resulting in altered insulin sensitivity and metabolism. Although nothing has been proven, there is enough evidence to warrant more research.

Diet is probably the single most important factor influencing the gut microbiome. Studies have shown that changes in diet result in changes in the gut microbiome. A healthy diet with low-fat, high fiber has been linked to a more diverse and better gut microbiome compared to a diet high in fat and low in fiber. The gut microbiome also adapt and shift quickly to plant-based diets compared to animal-based diets.

There is still a lot to learn and we will be able to use this knowledge to find new ways to treat many different diseases including diabetes. Until then, eating healthy and staying active can help maintain and develop a healthy gut microbiome.



Source: health.clevelandclinic.org; Forecast Diabetes Magazine

Support Group Meeting November 17

November 4, 2016

The TalkDiabetes Support Program

and the Diabetes Education Program at St. Anthony’s present:

Get Ready for the Holidays:

Cooking Demonstration of

Green Beans with Tomato Basil Walnut Salsa


10 a.m. Thursday, November 17, 2016

Hyland Education Great Room

10020 Kennerly Road

St. Louis, MO 63128


Presented by:

Kristen Rider, BSN, RN, CDE

Darla Martin, RD, LD, CDE


Guest Speaker Chef James Woods



Meetings are FREE to the public.

All are welcome!

 To register, call 314-ANTHONY (268-4669)

or visit stanthonysmedcenter.com/diabetes.

Spring has Sprung! Jump in with Plenty of Veggies

March 29, 2016

Here is our March receipe of the month!  This Spring, try this Strawberry and Spinach Salad with  plenty of veggies, fiber-rich strawberries and heart healthy unsaturated fats from canola oil and almonds.



1 (10 to 12 oz) package baby spinach, washed and dried

1/3 cup sliced almonds, toasted

1 quart strawberries, hulled and quartered

1 whole cucumber, peeled, seeded, and finely diced


Juice of half a lemon (2 tablespoons)

1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

2 tablespoons Splenda or artificial sweetener equivalent to 2 T of sugar

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 teaspoon poppy seeds


Directions: In a large salad bowl, toss together the spinach, almonds, strawberries, and cucumber. In a small glass dish or jar with a tight-fitting lid, combine the lemon juice, vinegar, sweetener, oil, and poppy seeds. Whisk in the glass dish or shake if using a jar. Dress the salad right before serving.  Makes 10 servings.

Nutritional Information: Per serving (1 ½ cup): 100 calories, 4g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 55 mg sodium, 12g carbohydrates, 4 g fiber, 3 g protein.




Source: Modified from Diabetic Living

Shamrock Ice Pops!

March 17, 2016

By Alison Brinker, RD, LD

Looking for a refreshing St. Patrick’s Day treat after all that Corned Beef, Cabbage and boiled potatoes? We have just the thing……….Shamrock Ice Pops!

Light ice cream has half the fat of regular ice cream and about the same amount of carbohydrate as the “no sugar added” variety. The unsweetened almond milk is lower in carbohydrate than cow’s milk making this a good treat for someone with diabetes.

1 cup light mint chocolate chip ice cream (such as Edy’s)

¾ cup unsweetened almond milk

  1. In a blender, mix together ice cream and almond milk
  2. Pour ice cream mixture evenly into 5 ice pop molds (or mini Tupperware containers). Use about ¼ cup ice cream mixture per mold. Insert Popsicle sticks in the center of each pop. Freeze until solid; about 3 hours. Enjoy!

Nutrition information per serving: Serving size 1 pop, 53 calories, 7 grams total carbohydrate, 5 grams sugar, 1 gram protein, 2.1 grams fat, 1.2 grams saturated fat, 6 mg cholesterol, 38 mg sodium.


Source: modified from diabetes.org


It’s Halloween! Candy is Everywhere & Chocolate is Good for Me, Right?

October 27, 2015

by Alison Brinker, RD, LD

The media often provides information about how some foods we generally think are not good choices may actually be good for us, such as chocolate and red wine.   Be aware, too much of anything is not a good idea. I will try to clarify the benefits of chocolate and wine and how to work these into a meal plan.

Flavanols are found in foods such as chocolate, red wine, grape juice, red grapes and tea. Flavanols are thought to help limit damage to the cells in our body from environmental contaminants such as pollution, pesticides and cigarette smoke. Flavanols may also play a part in reducing inflammation in the body, reduce the likelihood of platelets adhering and/or clotting in our blood vessels and improve blood flow.

The flavanols in red grapes, red wine, red grape juice may help increase levels of HDL (high density lipoprotein or “good” cholesterol) and consequently decrease the risk of heart disease. One 5-ounce glass of wine per day is all that is recommended for any potential benefit without increasing the risk of problems associated with too much alcohol consumption. If choosing red wine, a dry wine will have less impact on glucose levels than a sweet wine. It is also important to remember that a serving of fresh red grapes (about 17 grapes = 15 grams carbohydrate) or a serving of 100% juice red grape juice (4 ounce = 15 grams carb) can offer the same flavanols and benefits as the red wine. You are also getting fiber from the fresh grapes that is not found in juice or wine. Sometimes alcohol is not recommended because of certain medications.

Tea (unsweetened) is a free beverage that is also a source of flavanols. It is thought that 2 cups per day may reduce total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol (low-density lipoproteins or “bad” cholesterol) and reduce risk of heart disease and stroke. Iced tea is lower in flavanols that hot tea. Steeping tea as long as possible increases the flavanol content. Green or black tea has higher flavanol content than other types of tea.

Chocolate also contains flavanols and may help improve blood flow and lower blood pressure. However, like grape juice and fresh grapes it can impact glucose numbers significantly. The greatest amounts of flavanols are found in nonfat cocoa solids. Dutch cocoa is actually significantly lower in flavanol content. The best sources are natural or unsweetened cocoa powder. Add a tablespoon to unsweetened vanilla yogurt as part of a healthy snack. Unsweetened baking chocolate is also a good source as well as dark or semisweet chocolate. As with any food, check the label for serving size and carbohydrate content to determine the amount that will fit into your meal plan.

While chocolate can provide health benefits, tea, red grapes and grape products can too reinforcing that variety is one of the most important aspects of staying healthy.


Source: Nutrition411.com


Beans the Magical Vegetable

August 29, 2014

by Alison Brinker, RD, LD

Beans are a wonderful source of low fat protein, carbohydrate and fiber.  The fiber in beans can actually help slow the absorption of carbohydrate into the blood stream causing a slower rise in your blood glucose.  A serving of beans each day can cut your “bad” LDL cholesterol by about 5% found a recent report in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.  Beans are also a good source of iron, folate and magnesium.  This recipe combines beans and red bell peppers.  Red bell peppers are a great source of vitamin C.  Consuming vitamin C along with high iron foods actually enhances your body’s absorption of  iron.  Another great example of this is chili.  Tomatoes are high in vitamin C so they will enhance the absorption of the iron from the beans and meat in the chili.  Enjoy!!


Bean-Pepper Slaw

In a large bowl, toss 2- 15 ounce cans pinto or pink beans, rinsed and drained, with 2 small red bell peppers, seeded and thinly sliced; 1 medium shallot, finely chopped; 3 Tablespoons, red wine vinegar; 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil; and ¼ teaspoon each salt and black pepper.  Let stand 15 minutes.  Serving size: ½ cup=15 grams carbohydrate and 1 lean meat substitute or 1 carbohydrate serving and 1 oz meat substitute



Source:  Good Housekeeping, August 2014


Red, White & Blue Festive Recipes: Part 2 of 2

July 2, 2013

Here are a couple more fun, festive recipe’s to kick off your 4th of July party!

Red, White and Blue Salad

 red white and blue saladIngredients
• ¼ cup olive oil
• 3 teaspoons honey
• 2 teaspoons fresh tarragon, minced
• 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
• ½ cup walnuts
• Pam cooking spray
• 4 cups baby spinach, fresh
• ¾ cup blueberries
• 3 pears, cored and diced
• 1 cup strawberry, sliced
• ¼ cup blue cheese, crumbled

Combine in a cruet olive oil, honey, tarragon & cider vinegar and shake well to mix. (Set aside).
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a baking dish cut a piece of baker’s parchment paper and line the bottom. Coarse chop walnuts. Place walnuts on top of the parchment paper in a single layer, spray with Pam cooking spray and toast for 10-15 minutes.
Shake vinaigrette well to mix up again. In a bowl gently mix baby spinach, blueberries, pears, walnuts and strawberries together with vinaigrette mixture in cruet. Divide the salad mixture evenly between 6 plates and crumble blue cheese on to each salad.

Per Serving: 247 calories; 17 g fat (2.9 g sat); 4.2 mg cholesterol; 96.6 mg sodium, 22.7 g carbohydrate; 4.6 g fiber; 4 g protein

Red, White and Blue Potato Salad

red white and blue potato saladIngredients
• 1 lb. potatoes
• .5 cup Gorgonzola Cheese Crumbled
• .5 Cup Roasted red or yellow peppers, diced
• 1 shallot, crushed
• 2 tbs Champagne Vinegar
• 1tbs whole grain mustard
• 4tbs Olive Oil
• Salt and Pepper to taste

Fill a large pot with salted water and bring to a boil. Add potatoes and boil until tender. Drain, and allow to partially cool before cutting halves or quarters (depending on the size of your potatoes–you want bite size pieces). Do not remove the skins.

In a large mixing bowl combine vinegar, mustard, shallot, salt, and pepper. Working with a whisk, gradually stream in olive oil until it has emulsified with the rest of the ingredients.
Combine the potatoes with the vinaigrette, tossing to make sure the potatoes are evenly coated. Toss in the diced peppers and gorgonzola. It is important that the potatoes are not completely cooled so that the flavors marry. Allow this mixture to rest covered in the refrigerator for a few hours (or overnight) until the potatoes have completely cooled and absorbed some of the dressing. Makes approximately 6 servings.

Per Serving: 194 calories; 13.2 g fat (3.9 sat); 13.3 mg cholesterol; 638 mg sodium, 14.7 g carb, 364 mg potassium, 4.8 mg fiber

For other ideas please visit http://www.stanthonysmedcenter.com/information_health/recipes.asp



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