Weekly Round-Up

Here’s a look back at last week…

Beat the Heat

H.O.L.Y. smokes it was hot.  Here on the central coast we are known for our year-long sunny and 75 weather, but Mother Nature decided to mix things up and send us a scorcher.  We were in the upper 90’s and 100’s.  Very few people have air conditioners, so needless to say, the beaches were packed.  Jaime and I decided to beat the heat by heading out past Lopez Lake to Big Falls.




Hello perfect swimming hole.


We brought lunch, and other necessities…


Caught a one-eyed salamander. {not my arm…}


Saw Bambi.


Can I just gush?  I love where I live.










The Moves

The heat definitely put a damper on my workouts, which really shouldn’t be an excuse.  I did get up early to run a couple of times this past week, but lifting got left behind… oops.  Two 4 milers and a 6 miler.  That’s it.  That’s all she wrote.  Better than nothin’ I suppose.

Here’s the plan for next week:

+ Monday :: 3 mi + arms
+ Tuesday :: 4 mi + abs
+ Wednesday :: 4 mi
+ Thursday :: Legs
+ Friday :: Rest
+ Saturday :: 7 mi + abs
+ Sunday :: 3 mi + arms


Giving Back

This Saturday was the Coastal Tri-Counties Dietetic Association’s Spring Fling event.  This year’s theme was,“Giving Back to the Community,” spotlighting food insecurity.  I think it’s important to share the work of dietitian’s at the local level, especially in light of the Mother Jones controversy.  [Check out this article for some good insight – more on all this later.  I have lots of opinions.]

Our featured guest was Dave Schmit, former “Chef to the Stars.”  Chef Dave is dedicated to serving meals utilizing rescued food for the patrons of the Maxine Lewis Homeless Shelter.  Dave presented a lecture on his service to the homeless shelter, as well as provided a cooking demonstration with take home recipes.

I think the most important take home message was that the homeless are not starving; they are malnourished, and still need healthful food.  The needy don’t need our leftover boxes of ridiculously salt-filled mac and cheese {although all donations are appreciated}; we need to feed our homeless wholesome, nutritious foods that will help them feel and think better. 

As a clinical dietitian serving many homeless here in San Luis, this really struck a note.  If we took a look at the lab values of the homeless population, most likely they would be prescribed some sort of therapeutic diet for chronic conditions.

Chef Dave is an excellent model of nutrition for the homeless in our community, making use of 200-300 lbs. donated produce, and about 20-40 lbs. of meat to prepare balanced, nutritious meals!

If you’re here in the San Luis Obispo area, learn more here on how you can volunteer and get involved serving your community.


FODMAPs Update

This past weekend, I competed my Fructose and Special Case Fruits {containing fructose and sorbitol} challenge.  Let’s just say, it was fun or pretty.  My belly was about the size of a basketball for the majority of the weekend – so bubbly, crampy, and bloated.  I definitely do not tolerate dried fruit, as well as mango and HFCS.  I think I could possibly handle small amounts of raspberries, apples and pears – just as long as I don’t go and have the whole piece of fruit for a snack or part of my meal.  I may revisit this challenge once again more methodically – one fruit at a time while eliminating things I just know don’t sit well with my tummy.

I am back on the strict Low FODMAPs for the next three days, and then I challenge Fructans – wheat, garlic, onions; and Fructan/Polyols – brussels sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, snow peas.   My plan is to extend this challenge to be more methodical the first time around.  Instead of a two day free-for-all, I’m going to spread things out over 4 days like this:

Day 1 :: Wheat
Day 2 :: Garlic
Day 3 :: Onions
Day 4 :: Fructan/Polyols

I’ll keep you updated!

 Have a Great Week!


Moves. Menus. FODMAP update. And other business.

Happy Monday!  Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!  I was little under the weather {allergies/sinus infection?}, but that made for a fairly productive couple of days for blog updates.


New Things On the Blog!

First off, I created a new Facebook page!  I decided it was time this site got its own little corner of the social media giant instead of tagging along on my personal page.

Stephanie RDN facebook

Next up, I’ve joined the fabulous ladies at Recipe ReDux.  It’s a recipe challenge site created by RD’s to improve or create healthy, delicious tasting dishes.  Each month we are assigned a theme or special ingredient for recipe development inspiration.  I’m so excited to take part!  Keep an eye out May 22nd for what I’ve conjured up!

Recipe ReDux

Lastly, you can check out some of my favorite recipes on Healthy Aperture– another site founded and moderated by RD’s.  Think of Healthy Aperture as an image-based recipe box filled with nutritious recipes developed by Registered Dietitians and the like.

my healthy aperture gallery



After spending two weeks removing all FODMAPs out of my diet {and feeling great!}, I have now progressed into the Challenge Phase of my FODMAP Elimination Diet.  Yesterday was my “Lactose Cautious Challenge.”  I had a little cream cheese on my morning toast and cream in my coffee, goat cheese on my polenta pizza {recipe coming soon!}, and a cup of vanilla froyo – for science, of course!  No GI problems!  Not that I really expected any issues anyways…

Today I throw caution to the wind and go full-out lactose heavy.  As I write this, I am sipping on a glass of fat-free milk {something I never do…}.  I’m also thinking Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, and ice cream {once again, for science!} will be on the menu.

The difficult part about the Challenge Phase is making sure you consume only lactose and no other FODMAPs.  For example, I need to choose yogurt that doesn’t contain honey, HFCS, inulin, fruit juice concentrate, or any other FODMAP.

Tomorrow I go back to strict elimination for 3 more days before I methodically repeat the process with fructose, fructans, polyols, and galactans.  Wish me luck!



Week 3 Run on the Sly Half Marathon Training:

Monday :: 3 mi Legs + Abs
Tuesday :: 4 mi + Arms
Wednesday :: 4 mi + Legs + Abs
Thursday :: Shoulders + Tri’s
Friday ::  Rest!
Saturday :: 6 mi + Legs
Sunday :: 3 mi



I’m thinking something along the lines of these recipes, which coincidentally are all brought to you by the Healthy Aperture recipe gallery!

+ Ginger-Soy Glazed Salmon
+ Rice “Krispy” Popcorn Chicken
+ Berry Chicken Salad {+ apples, pears and dried fruit for my Fructose Challenge}


That’s all folks!

Have a great week!

Weekly Menu + My New Diet

You may have noticed yesterday I posted a gluten-free recipe, something I haven’t done in about a year and half… It wasn’t because I just had some left over gluten-free flour that I needed to use up, or because I was trying to provide a trendy gluten-free recipe to you, my dear reader.  It’s because I am I am going back to gluten-free.  Actually, I’m taking it a little further than just wheat; I am going Low FODMAP.

I was first introduced to the Low FODMAPs diet two years ago during my undergrad while shadowing a fabulous dietitian, Carol Plotkin at On Nutrition in Rochester, NY.  I adopted a handful of the recommendations for a short period of time, and the results were amazing!  No more stomachaches, bloating, gas … and other unpleasant side effects.  Plus, I lost a little weight, got way faster, and felt more energized!

Now I’m not trying to convince you to go Low FODMAP, and let me note – this is not a weight-loss diet – but if you struggle with IBS symptoms, you may give it a try to see if you can find relief too.

So let me give you a brief review on what a FODMAP is…

Oligosaccharide {fructans and galactans}
Disaccharide {lactose}
Monosaccharide {fructose}
Polyols {sugar alcohols}

FODMAPs are specific types of carbohydrates that are rapidly fermented in our GI tract.  As the healthy bacteria in our gut digests and consumes FODMAP carbohydrates, they produce gas and draw in water.  For people with IBS, these normal physiological processes are exaggerated resulting in undesirable side effects.

So what are some of the big culprits?

  • Fructans – Artichokes, asparagus, brussel sprouts, broccoli, cabbage, chicory (Inulin), snow peas, onions, garlic, wheat, and rye
  • Galactans – Chickpeas, lentils, kidney beans, and soy products
  • Lactose – Milk, yogurt, ice cream, riccotta, and cottage cheese
  • Fructose – Apples, pears, peaches, mangos, water, coconut, dried fruits, fruit juice, honey, agave, and high fructose corn syrup
  • Polyols – Sugar alcohols, apricots, plums, nectarines, watermelon, cauliflower, and mushrooms

Currently, I am starting with a very strict elimination phase, where I am cutting out all  FODMAPs for two weeks.  I have never done an elimination type diet, and while I do have a pretty good idea what gives me grief {fructans, galactans, and fructose kill me, whereas polyols and lactose I tolerate fairly well, with the exception of sugar alcohols}, I think I will gain an even greater insight into foods I can tolerate and those I just plain can’t.

So here’s what I have planned for this week’s Low FODMAP menu:

+ Pork Chops + Baked Sweet Potatoes + Corn
+ Seared Ahi Tuna + Brown Rice + Mixed Asian Veg
+ Chicken Thai Quinoa Salad {inspired by this recipe}

And workouts for the week:

+ Monday – Chest & Biceps
+ Tuesday – Legs & Abs // 3 mi trails
+ Wednesday – Rest
+ Thursday –  Shoulders & Triceps // 3 mi
+ Friday – Legs & Abs
+ Saturday – 4 mi trails
+ Sunday – 3 mi

I’m upping my running this week after feeling like a slacker since this past weekend’s SLO Marathon.  I may or may not be feeling the racing itch!  Hopefully my new diet will help get me back in good shape for running season!

Happy Tuesday!