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Editor's e-Note
Update on Plant-Based Hospital Foodservice

Did you know that the movement to incorporate more plant-based meals in our nation’s hospitals has made great strides and continues to pick up speed?

In this month’s E-News Exclusive, Today’s Dietitian (TD) provides an overview of several programs and initiatives developed by organizations that have galvanized hospitals across the country to offer more plant-based options to their patients, visitors, and those living in nearby communities.

After reading the article, visit TD’s website at to read the digital edition of the January issue, which includes articles on high-fiber convenience foods, pomegranates’ antioxidant power, and BMI vs waist circumference. We also include a 2020 planner with monthly ideas so you can set and meet your professional goals throughout the new year.

The staff of TD wishes you and your family a happy, healthful holiday season. Don’t forget to check out where you can read and comment on blogs written by RDs for RDs. We’re welcoming new guest bloggers, so if you’re interested in writing, please contact me at the e-mail listed below.

Please enjoy the E-Newsletter and give us your feedback at, and don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

— Judith Riddle, editor
e-News Exclusive
Plant-Based Offerings Heat Up in Health Care
By Sharon Palmer, MSFS, RDN, and Ally Mirin

As dietitians know full well, plant-based eating is a hot trend among consumers. According to a recent report, nearly 40% of Americans are trying to incorporate more plant-based foods into their diet. And with good reason. The evidence supporting a plant-based diet to help prevent, treat, and manage some of the most prevalent diseases in the nation is growing. So, it’s only natural that health care facilities of all types would be interested in adding plant-based offerings to their menus. Some states are even mandating that these options be made available. Here’s a look at what’s going on with plant-based options in health care.

Why Put Plants on the Health Care Menu?
In the United States, CVD is the leading cause of hospitalization and is the cause of 1 in 3 deaths. Obesity, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, cancer, and high cholesterol also contribute to a significant amount of hospital stays and are leading causes of mortality in the country.1 One commonality among these illnesses is that they all have modifiable risk factors, which include diet. Many studies have shown that following a plant-based diet is associated with lower risks of heart disease, obesity, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer.2 Yet many hospitals have offered unhealthful food choices that contradict the healing environment that health care providers work so hard to foster. This concept is changing, as more hospitals desire to become leaders of change in the community, both for health and environmental footprint. The nonprofit organization Health Care Without Harm reports that the health care sector’s climate footprint contributes to 4.4% of global emissions—nearly 75% comes from the health care supply chain, including food and agricultural products.3

Legislation is catching up with the times. In 2018, California passed Senate Bill 1138, requiring hospitals to make plant-based meals that don’t include any animal products available to all patients.4 New York passed a similar bill in February 2019, mandating that hospitals offer plant-based meals and snacks to patients upon request at no additional cost.5 More states may follow in New York and California’s footsteps, making plant-based foods a required option for patients across the nation.

Full story »
Continuing Education
Learn about preexisting diabetes in pregnancy in the November/December issue of Today’s Dietitian. Read the CPE Monthly article, take the 10-question online test at, and earn two CEUs!

$10 Gift Card
Use code GIFTCARD19 to redeem savings on any self-study course, recorded webinar, or multicourse package. Click here for details »

* This coupon cannot be combined with any other offers or promotions. Lifetime Club Members are not eligible for this coupon. Discount will be applied to the total amount of matching products. Offer expires December 31, 2019, at 11:59 PM EST.

A Lifetime Membership Offers Many Gifts!
We're making our Lifetime Membership to the CE Learning Library available for the holidays! Between now and the end of 2019, you can gain access to our CE Learning Library for the rest of your life! For just $599, your Lifetime Membership includes unlimited access to every 2-credit self study course and 1-credit webinar we offer ... for as long as you live!* Lifetime Membership also provides a 25% discount on the currently published registration fee for Today's Dietitian events, including our 2020 Spring Symposium in Savannah, May 17–20, 2020. Click here to secure your membership today »

* Terms and Conditions apply. Offer expires December 31, 2019, at 11:59 PM EST.

Upcoming Live Webinars

Counseling for Food Allergies in Children and Adolescents
In part two of this three-part webinar series, join Sherry Coleman Collins, MS, RDN, LD, on Wednesday, January 8, 2020, from 2–3 PM as she reviews how the RDN can be indispensable when educating parents and kids on proven tactics used to manage a food allergy, including proper avoidance; managing school nutrition environments; providing proper substitutions and cooking techniques; strategies to reduce picky eating; advice for necessary supplements; and management from infancy through the teenage years. The role of the RDN as clinician and nutrition counselor is an essential part of improving outcomes for children with food allergies. Click here to register »

Critical Thinking About Gene Editing and Human Nutrition
Gene editing, like other agricultural technologies, creates an enormous communication challenge. RDs will be deeply involved in the discussion, often through direct communication with consumers or consumer groups. Join Dr. Jason Riis and Dr. Brandon McFadden on Thursday, January 23, 2020, from 2–3 PM EST, for an interactive webinar that builds on a 2019 survey of the Today’s Dietitian readership pertaining to critical thinking. Dr. Riis and Dr. McFadden will discuss the results of that survey, as well as describe discussion patterns and reference specific examples from current commentators. They will discuss specific concepts and communication tactics to help RDs identify and engage in various types of consumer discussion. Sponsored by Bayer. Click here to register »

Navigating the 2020 Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes
The annually produced American Diabetes Association Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes provides benchmark guidelines for patients living with diabetes and the health care professionals who care for them. Join Kathy Warwick, RD, CDE, on Thursday, January 30, 2020, from 2–3:30 PM EST, as she provides a comprehensive review of the ADA's 2020 guidelines and developments and opportunities for RDs in diabetes care. Registration will take place on the Becky Dorner & Associates website. Click here to register »

Buy either of these two courses and enter the word DIABETES at checkout to receive the webinar for free!
  • American Diabetes Association Guide to Nutrition Therapy for Diabetes Course
  • American Diabetes Association: Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes, 2019 Course

Counseling for Food Allergies in Adults
In the final part of this three-part webinar series, on Wednesday, February 5, 2020, from 2–3 PM EST, Sherry Coleman Collins, MS, RDN, LD, will discuss how the RDN can help clients learn to manage risk around social settings, intimacy, and dating, and understand the keys to reducing the risk of food allergies in their offspring, in addition to the obvious food preparation and cooking skills. The RDN can also be a source of referral for additional important services, such as support groups or psychological services. Click here to register »

Recorded Webinars

Culinary Techniques to Meet the Needs of a Client's Diagnosis Without Sacrificing Flavor for Cancer and Renal Disease
Chefs Abbie Gellman, MS, RD, CDN, and Julie Harrington, RD, discuss how to talk about dietary changes for clients with cancer and renal disease. Learn how to evaluate clients’ cooking skills and confidence in the kitchen and set realistic, food-focused, behavior-change goals. This 1-CEU complimentary webinar is the final in a four-part recorded webinar series, featuring a new diagnosis discussed in Q1, Q2, Q3, & Q4. Sponsored by Egg Nutrition Center. Click here to register »

Orthorexia Nervosa: What Dietitians Need to Know About This ‘Healthy Eating’ Disorder
Orthorexia nervosa (ON) was first described in 1997 but has since gained increased recognition as a problem faced by more and more individuals. While it is not yet listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders with the other known and observed eating disorders, it is well recognized as causing ill health and requires treatment. Join Janice Dada, MPH, RDN, CDE, as she explores the emerging research and the role of dietitians in patient support, identification, and treatment of ON. Click here to register »

The Keys to Preventing Food Allergies
Join Sherry Coleman Collins, MS, RDN, LD, as she discusses how RDs and others in the nutrition discipline can better understand the strengths and weaknesses of current food allergy diagnostic methods, how food allergies develop, and interventions that may reduce risk. Click here to register »

Update: What's New in the World of Carbohydrates
In this 1-CEU complimentary webinar, Joanne Slavin, PhD, RD, professor, will provide an update on the recommendations for carbohydrates set by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Joanne will discuss the latest evidence relating to appropriate carbohydrate consumption by addressing professional practice gaps, including making better carbohydrate choices by consuming less added sugars and eating more plant-based foods that are high in fiber. Sponsored by Barilla. Click here to register »

2020 Spring Symposium

Join us May 17–20, 2020 in a great American city for our 7th annual continuing education and networking event for dietitians and nutrition professionals. Earn at least 15 CEUs plus network with fellow attendees, our all-star lineup of presenters, and our amazing sponsor companies. To register, as well as get more details about the event, our presenters and their session topics, our sponsors, special events and more, visit Register now and join us in Savannah!

Register Now For $349
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Ask the Expert
Have a dietetics-related question that you'd like our expert Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, FAND, to answer? Email or send a tweet to @tobyamidor, and we may feature your query!
In this e-Newsletter
RD Lounge Blog
Fatigue: Diabetes, Lifestyle, or Aging?
Becky Dorner, RDN, LD, FAND

Rose was recently diagnosed with diabetes, so she made an appointment to talk with Sally, an RD. Rose has been feeling tired and attributed it to the fact she was about to turn 70, not thinking that it could be attributed to her diabetes, diet, or other lifestyle habits.

According to the American Diabetes Association, research shows that 61% of people with newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes report fatigue as a symptom. High blood glucose levels could be responsible, as they contribute to slowing blood circulation and preventing cells from getting the oxygen they need. High blood glucose levels also can cause inflammation, which leads to the infiltration of immune cells into the nervous system. When this happens, the brain receives a signal to sleep, and this results in fatigue. Low blood glucose, on the other hand, prevents cells from getting the fuel they need to function well. Knowing that many conditions and medications can lead to fatigue, Sally encouraged Rose to consult her physician with her concerns of unusual tiredness.

Read more »
Other News
Physicians’ Eating Disorder Knowledge Lacking, Say BMJ, AED
In a press release, the Academy for Eating Disorders highlights a BMJ article that found that eating disorder training was limited to just a few hours of physicians’ medical training in the United Kingdom, resulting in avoidable deaths—and issues a call for change.

RD Works Toward Dietetic Diversity
Exhale features Deanna Belleny, MPH, RDN, cofounder and director of programs for Diversify Dietetics, bringing attention to the limited number of RDs of color and what her organization is doing to change that.
Field Notes
Taxing Sugar Content, Not Volume, of Soda More Effective

Taxing sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) by the amount of sugar they contain, rather than by the liquid volume of these drinks, as several US cities currently do, could produce even greater health benefits and economic gains, a team of researchers has concluded.

The analysis, by researchers at New York University, Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of California, Berkeley, appears in the journal Science.

Seven US cities tax SSBs by the volume of the beverage—levies that don’t take into account the amount of sugar these drinks contain.

“Despite their different sugar content and resulting different harms, all sugar-sweetened beverages are taxed at the same rate per liter under a volumetric tax,” wrote Harvard’s Anna Grummon, PhD; New York University’s Hunt Allcott, PhD; Wharton’s Benjamin Lockwood, PhD; and the University of California, Berkeley’s Dmitry Taubinsky, PhD. “This tax structure gives consumers no incentive to substitute from high-sugar to low-sugar SSBs, even though the latter are less harmful. Thus, while a volumetric tax reduces consumption of SSBs in general, it does not provide the maximum possible health benefits.”

Read more »
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In the February Issue

Cancer and Cardiovascular Care

Beets’ Health Benefits

Spotlight on Lactose-Free Dairy

Choline and CVD

Picky Eating in Children
Find solutions on our ToolKit Page
Tech & Tools
Live, Trainer-Led Running App
The Charge Running app, available free with a subscription for iOS and Android, features live running classes for any fitness level. Users run alongside others across the country in real time with the support of professional trainers. More than 100 on-demand runs also are available, and users can track their performance and compete against others who have completed the same run. The app includes performance tracking, music, group chatting, and integration with Apple Watch and smartphones’ health apps. Learn more »

Portable, Low-Footprint Battle Ropes
Hyperwear offers a weighted battle rope, Hyper Rope, for rope training. Hyper Rope is shorter than other ropes at 20 feet long, taking up about 6 feet of space when used, and doesn’t require an anchor point to attach to, making it easy to travel with. It features a flexible metal core and braided construction, weighs 15 lbs, and can be used for cardio and weight training for legs, arms, core, and shoulders. Learn more »
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