Eat to Live: Breakfast (an NBC Chicago TV special)

I was quoted in this story that can be found on NBC’s website.  Click the link to see original story and watch the video of this TV special from NBC Chicago about breakfast – I answer questions about making better selections grocery shopping and healthier eating:

Obesity  is growing at an alarming rate in the United States with one in three  children now overweight or obese.

In  Chicago, the obesity rate is double the national average for children age  three to seven.

It’s become so urgent, First Lady Michelle  Obama launched a campaign, called “Let’s  Move­” to end childhood obesity in one generation.
So we begin with breakfast, the most important  meal of the day, but one bad decision can lead to another, and then  another.
The Institute of Medicine says adults should eat no more than  2,000 calories a day, but with processed and fast food so common in the American  diet, many people easily top that by a couple thousand calories.
It’s no wonder the average American is about  23  pounds overweight.
Jewel-Osco dietitian Kim  Kirchherr says to change that, you have to first start at the grocery  store.
Make a grocery list so you can shop quickly and stay within  budget.
She suggests that you never go to the store  hungry, because then it becomes difficult not to make impulsive purchases.
To get the nutrients that you need, she suggests that you “eat the  rainbow.”
Registered dietitian Dawn Jackson Blatner agrees, and she explains why each color  represents different antioxidants, flavonoids, and other good-for-you  substances.
–          Red: anthocyanins and lycopene
–          Green: lutein
–          Orange and yellow: carotenoids
–          Purple, red, and blue: antioxidants
–          White: allicin
If you’re wondering about organic foods, here’s one tip: look for the USDA stamp that  certifies foods as organic.
That website offers a lot more information  about organic versus conventional. (Organic Consumers Association).
Many studies have been done on organic foods and their  conventional counterparts.
The Environmental Working Group compiled two lists comparing conventionally grown produce and produce grown  organically. (Dirty Dozen).
One way to make sure you know exactly how your  produce is grown: buy it from a farm. We may live in a major urban area, but in  Naperville, for example, just one place that  you can go is the Green Earth Institute.
There are also many farmers markets and access to organic foods in the Chicago area.
During a particularly busy week, getting to a  grocery store is difficult, so make sure your freezer is stocked. Frozen is just  as nutritious as fresh.
Also, there’s no need to be deathly afraid of  carbs. They’re the brain’s fuel source, and if you look for “whole wheat” on the  label or the whole grain stamp, you’re getting much needed  nutrients.
Another food people may fear: cheese. Choose  fat free, reduced fat, or light cheese and you’re getting the dairy many  registered dietitians suggest.
If fat free milk is something you won’t drink,  try one percent. One percent chocolate milk is the dieter’s answer to  dessert.
Here are two easy shopping tips:  first, 90 percent of the food in your cart should come from the perimeter  of the store.
There’s something called the five twenty rule that makes label reading easier if you’re  finding it difficult to decipher the back of the package.
Bottom line is if you’re going to transform  your diet (American Dietetic  Association), watch your overall calorie intake for the day. (USDA Economic Research Service).