My kids benefited from habits established by my parents

Do you think June Cleaver would have heated up frozen chicken nuggets for Wally and the Beaver? No way.

The backstory: I got married in January of my senior year of high school (yes, high school! No, I don’t recommend this!). My first kid was born a year and a half later. I was 19 years old and had no idea what I was doing. And yet, I raised three very healthy eaters.

For the most part, I simply followed feeding patterns I learned from my parents.

My father was a high school dropout who went to trade school to become a machinist. My mom was mostly a stay-home-mom, occasionally…

A deep look inside the produce department — with photos

updated July 8, 2019


The Fresh Market was founded in 1982 in Greensboro, North Carolina and according to the company website operates more than 160 stores in 22 states. The Fresh Market does in fact have 161 stores left, down from 176 in 2018, after closing multiple stores and halting new stores it had planned to open in 2018.

It is owned by Apollo Management, a private equity firm. Apollo, The Fresh Market’s founder, and his son joined forces and bought out the company’s public stockholders in March of 2016…

A real honest discussion about phytochemicals.

Diverse colors in your diet provide the vitamins, minerals, and (possibly) healthful phytochemicals your body needs.

This gorgeous dish is served by The Fiction Kitchen at 428 S. Dawson Street, Raleigh, NC (the photo was originally posted on their Facebook page June 4, 2019). The Fiction Kitchen provides vegan and vegetarian dishes prepared in a 100% vegetarian kitchen.


Did I say something-or-other chemicals? Yes I did. I am a chemist, after all. A chemical is any substance consisting of matter, whether a pure element or a mixture making a compound, solution, or gas.

Phytochemicals are naturally occurring chemicals produced by metabolism in plants to aid their growth or their protection from predators, pathogens, or competitors. They provide fruits and vegetables with aroma, flavor, and color.

Phytochemicals are undergoing a great deal of research to determine whether or not they provide positive health…

Teens’ 10 Keys To Eating Success

Nearly 21% of America’s youth aged 12–19 years old are obese (have a BMI ≥ 95% of the CDC sex-specific BMI-for-age growth charts). Adolescent obesity is a serious problem in the United States putting adolescents at risk for poor health now and in their future. The probability of adolescents with obesity becoming adults with obesity is approximately 80% (1).

Prevalence of obesity among youth aged 2–19 years, by sex and age: United States, 2015–2016

You know vegetables are an important part of nutritious eating and you’re struggling to get your kid to eat them. And that, my friend, is where your problem lies.

You love your child and want to feed him right. You know vegetables are important and you keep trying different tactics to GET your child to eat them.

CALM DOWN. Your child will not likely suffer a nutritional disaster if he refuses the next serving of carrots, but the power struggle you are engaging in will likely make the situation worse.

Stop stressing and pressuring

Pressuring doesn’t work. Pressuring can seem positive and feel like…

Brilliantly simple. Many have copied and revised Dr. Epstein’s family-based approach to childhood weight management, yet his food category system is still the most commonly used.

I was able to get this copy, in pretty good shape, from a third party seller on Amazon. With shipping and taxes, my cost was $6.41.

Dr. Leonard Epstein and his team at SUNY, Buffalo originally developed the Stoplight method as a family-based approach to obesity for children six through twelve years old. But it is a program everyone can use for weight management, no matter your age.

The brilliance of the Stoplight approach is its simplicity

Childhood and adolescent weight management is a family issue. The whole family needs to get on board with changing their diet and meal behaviors to help an overweight child reach a healthy…

The wrong approach will do more harm than good. Stop focusing on how much your child eats and start focusing on when, where, and what YOU are feeding him.

When your pediatrician tells you your child is overweight

You may be surprised, worried, or sad when told your child is overweight.

Becoming well informed is the best way to start helping your overweight child.

With evidence-based information and guidance, you can help your child achieve and maintain a healthy weight. As a parent, you are the single most important and powerful influence on your child’s health, and physical and emotional well-being. ​

♥ Becoming well informed is the best way to start helping your overweight child.

How is overweight defined in childhood and adolescence?

Correctly evaluating your child’s weight is important…

Get real with yourself and increase your chances to eat healthy every day

The other day a client told me he usually goes out to eat rather than cooking at home. The main reason: every time he loads up on fresh vegetables at the grocery store the majority of them go bad before he cooks them. Buying fresh vegetables has been a waste of his time and a waste of his money. Discouraged, he avoids buying vegetables at all now.

When Idealism Collides with Reality

There are a whole slew of artificial boundaries to healthy eating manufactured by our Instagram, Pintrest, celebrity chef, Facebook photos…

Your kid is the least qualified person in your family to determine what will be eaten

If you routinely ask your child what she wants to eat, it’s time for you to Parent Up.

It’s a familiar pattern observed all too often in our hectic society. A baby is born and the parents dream of raising a perfect, healthy human being. The little one is carefully fed only the best/cleanest/organic foods, for a while at least, with great expenditures of time and attention from mom and dad.

Then idealism evolves into realism. The pressures of everyday life get in the…

Are the fruits and vegetables there any better than at the grocery store?

Very pretty. But just how long have they been sitting there in the summer heat? (NC Farmers Market, Raleigh, NC)

There’s a lot of noise in the nutrition world about buying foods at your local farmers market. And a lot of claims about the alleged health benefits of those foods. But are these claims realistic? And is it practical for you to shop there on a regular basis?

Frozen fruits and vegetables likely have higher nutritional value

Frozen fruits and vegetables are picked at the peak of ripeness, when they are most nutritious, and frozen within a few hours.

Admittedly, blanching vegetables before packaging to kill harmful…

Cathy Dyer

Integrative Family Nutrition Coach — Registered Dietitian Nutritionist — National Board Certified Health & Wellness Coach —

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