Tag Archives: Nourished Living

Nourished Living by Dietician Kelly Hamlin MA, RD, CDN

Technology advancements make it easy to monitor health, weight loss

Though I don’t consider myself all that old (stop laughing!), it really is amazing how far technology has come just in my lifetime.

Who remembers having to get up to actually turn the dial to change the TV? Not to mention there were only four channels!

Heck, who remembers when MTV actually played music videos? Remember how HUGE cell phones were when they first came out?

We have also come a long way in healthcare technology.

When I was first diagnosed with Diabetes, people were still using urine dip sticks.

Fortunately I had one of the first blood glucose meters, but it was huge and took forever compared to what I have today.

I actually just ordered one that has a USB connection so I can download my numbers to my computer and email them to my MD! Thirty years ago this would have been incomprehensible!

Now there are all kinds of apps you can get for your cell phone, pads, computers, etc. to help keep track of your fitness and nutrition.

Here are some examples that are available on a number of technology platforms: Continue reading

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Nourished Living by Dietician Kelly Hamlin MA, RD, CDN

Mission to gain weight troublesome for some

As a rule, we have a tendency to focus on individuals who need or want to lose weight. But this week I would like to go in the other direction and discuss ways to help those who either want to maintain or gain weight.

There are many reasons why people might be underweight. For some, it may just be genetics. But for others it may be a side effect of medications, or due to a chronic illness.

Often, people undergoing treatment for cancer have difficulty maintaining their weight.

Some of the reasons are nausea due to the side effects of treatment, difficulty chewing and swallowing, loss of appetite, issues involving the gastrointestinal tract or just the fact that eating—and cooking—is exhausting.

You may think I’m nuts for saying that eating is exhausting.

But think about when you yourself have been under the weather with a cold.

Nothing tastes good, it’s hard to eat with a stuffed up nose, etc.

Well, that is nothing compared to what those people undergoing cancer treatment go through.

If you are having trouble putting on weight, here are some tips to help add calories to your diet: Continue reading

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Nourished Living by Dietician Kelly Hamlin MA, RD, CDN

Keeping hydrated as important in winter as warmer seasons

During the summer you often hear people say, “Gee, it’s hot out. I better stay hydrated.”

Well, guess what? Keeping hydrated is equally as important during the winter.

Don’t we use humidifiers in our houses during the cold weather months because heat dries everything out?

Have you ever noticed when you walk outside how dry the air can feel?

Not to mention how hot and sweaty we get sledding, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, etc. All these things affect our body’s hydration levels.

Water is critical for all body functions and is a natural internal moisturizer for your skin.

When you breathe in cold, dry air your body warms and humidifies that air.

And with each following exhalation you lose large amounts of water.

A dehydrated body can lead to exhaustion, muscle fatigue, cramps, loss of coordination and even stroke.

Dehydration can also leave your body more susceptible to common colds and flu, which are both more prevalent in the winter.

Here are some tips on how to stay hydrated in the cold weather. Continue reading

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Nourished Living by Dietician Kelly Hamlin MA, RD, CDN

Combat the holiday blues with exercise and good nutrition

It’s the most wonderful time of the year… except when it’s not. There is so much pressure and stress to make everything “perfect,” not to mention the running around shopping, baking, cleaning, etc.

Many of us are missing those we’ve loved and lost and trying to figure out how to get through without them with us.

Then, of course, this year, the events at Sandy Hook have made us sad and a bit fearful.

What can we do to brighten our mood?

Get active! Being active can help improve self-esteem and general mental health.

Research has shown that being physically active is an effective, but often underused, treatment for mild to moderate depression.

Regular physical activity has been proven to reduce stress and anxiety as well as improve sleep.

There’s no evidence that any one kind of physical activity has a greater impact on depression than others.

It appears that any form of physical activity can help!

As always, please check with your healthcare provider before starting any exercise program.

This is particularly important for people with a medical condition and people who have not been physically active much in the past.

To get the most benefit, you should be active at least 20 to 30 minutes a day, three days a week.

Current studies suggest that four or five times a week is best. If you are a beginner, exercise for 20 minutes and build up to 30 minutes.

But remember, any amount of activity is better than none.  Continue reading

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Nourished Living by Dietician Kelly Hamlin MA, RD, CDN

A look at the varieties of weight-loss surgery, Part Two

Unlike adjustable gastric banding, gastric bypass is generally considered irreversible (though it has been reversed in rare cases).

Therefore, getting this surgery means that you’re permanently changing how your body digests food.

Because these weight loss surgeries are more complicated, the risks are higher.

The risk of death from these procedures is low—about one percent—but they are more dangerous than gastric banding.

Infection and blood clots are risks, as they are with most surgeries.

Gastric bypass also increases the risk of hernias, which can develop later and may need further surgery to fix.

Also, a side effect of rapid weight loss can be the formation of gallstones.

Biliopancreatic Diversion is essentially a more drastic version of a gastric bypass.

In this type of surgery a portion of the stomach—as much as 70%—is removed, and even more of the small intestine is bypassed. Continue reading

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Nourished Living by Dietician Kelly Hamlin MA, RD, CDN

fluShow of hands… do you know someone who has already contracted the flu this season? It is running amok! Presently, two of the group homes I work at are quarantined—and so are several others.

Schools are being hit, many of my co-workers and their families are down with it, and the list goes on and on.

I’m guessing with all the sickness going around, you may ask yourself, “How do I know if it’s the flu or a cold?”

So glad you asked! My friends at www.webmd.com made up the handy dandy chart at right that will help you make the distinction between the two.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), in the week ending November 24, the flu was reported to be widespread in New York, Mississippi and South Carolina.

And every state is reporting some kind of flu activity. In that same week, there were two pediatric deaths in the country due to the flu. Continue reading

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Nourished Living by Dietician Kelly Hamlin MA, RD, CDN

Weight Loss Surgery comes in a few different varieties

I am willing to guess that we all know someone who has had bariatric surgery. Bariatric surgery promotes weight loss by changing the digestive system’s anatomy, limiting the amount of food that can be eaten and digested.

Those with a BMI of 40 or more, or a BMI of 35 to 39.9 and a serious obesity-related health problem, qualify for bariatric surgery.

When people hear the term “bariatric surgery,” I believe most would assume that it’s the “gastric bypass” surgery.

But what they may not realize is there are several different types of bariatric surgeries.

So you have a point of reference, let me give you a quick and dirty explanation of how normal digestion occurs.

Food passes through the stomach and enters the small intestine where most of the nutrients and calories are absorbed.

It then passes into the large intestine (colon), and the remaining waste is eventually excreted.

There are two basic types of weight loss surgery: restrictive surgeries and malabsorptive (poor intestinal absorption of nutrients)/restrictive surgeries.

They assist with weight loss in different ways. Continue reading

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