Nutrition Unscrambled

Get Your Plate In Shape: Relax and Have Fun

By Anna Shlachter, MS, RD, LDN
March 15th, 2012

Yesterday was Registered Dietitian (RD) Day-hooray for all of our Registered Dietitian readers. Instead of doing some other tasks last night, I decided to celebrate RD Day and take a trip to Whole Foods and Trader Joes for no other reason than to look around (of course, I still bought a few things). I wasn’t in a hurry and I was able to enjoy my trip. Some of you may be thinking that my activity is not fun, but for me it is something I like to do. Regardless of what activity it is, we all need to take time to do things that are relaxing and fun. It should be a part of everyone’s plate. We’ve probably all experienced some form of stress and if it is not managed, excess stress can lead to poor eating, sleeping, and overall health habits. I can say this was a piece of my plate missing for some time. Long clinic hours and taking work home definitely interfered with this part of my life and I found it difficult to want to take time to do the “fun” things that would have been great stress-relievers.

I’ve worked to make sure I have me time-some of the time I consider my workout me time because I during that time I can let all things go and focus on my workout. For my well-being, I’ve been trying to spend more time with friends. There is something to be said about spending time with others and this is usually one of the first things to be put on hold as life gets busy. Also, I enjoy spending time reading (magazines are easy read choice) and spending time with my kritters.

What do you do to keep this part of your plate in balance?

Getting the Right Balance

By Marcia Greenblum, MS, RD
March 6th, 2012

I’ve been reading blogs and websites about working moms recently, like and, trying to get inspiration about how to balance life that includes kids, husband, parents, finances, friends, environment, profession etc.

Today’s woman has so much access to knowledge, it can be overwhelming. In the old days women consulted their mothers or grandmothers for advice, now the web can be a great substitute for the experience those elders offered. However, the catch is not to expect perfection in everything you undertake.

As a registered dietitian, one would expect that I strived to teach my children to eat healthily. Well, I recognized immediately that actions speak louder than words and rather than verbal teaching I made sure our meals had balance and variety and organization. All our meals had variety of color, texture and nutrients long before the MyPlate program showed us all how to eat. Ellen Sater RD in her book, Feed Me I’m Yours, taught me that the size of one’s portions should be determined by the person eating with the requirement that one needs to sample new foods. I ate most meals with our children and snacking was rare.

To quote Aimee Wimbush-Bourque on “If they see you reaching for a crisp apple instead of a Doritos bag at snack time, they’ll do the same.” Peer pressure does take hold when kids go to school and those packaged foods look so much better than the home made lunches I sent but, after sending kids with packaged lunches once or twice, they soon realized that simple homemade food was tastier.

In my professional life I find it easy to support the egg industry because I have always felt eggs are full of nutrients, inexpensive, serving sized and delicious. If this was a scientific experiment I would be able to write in the results section that I proved my hypothesis, my kids now all adults, are healthy, eat well and love to cook.

WOW your eggs with SPICES and More

By Anna Shlachter, MS, RD, LDN
February 2nd, 2012

Marcia and I attended a food networking event last night called Olive Oil, Spices and Wine-Oh My! The event was run by two Registered Dietitians Brooke Schantz and Anne Milliing and they did an amazing job. It was a wonderful evening talking and tasting with other foodies. We heard about the different oils and balsamic vinegars at Old Towne Oil and had a tasting of several products. Chef Ranelle Kirchner shared samples and recipes using different oils and spices. The recipes included hummus, eggplant spread, squash bran muffins and more.

The next stop on the tour was the Spice House where we learned more about the world of spices. I joked that I was “spicewhelmed” and couldn’t decide what to get because there were so many awesome spices! While looking around the store, I noticed how many spices noted that they would be good with eggs. This reminded me once more that eggs are so versatile and you can have them a different way every day just by tweaking the spices you use.

The spices are great for omelets, quiche, scrambled eggs and more. So many recipes, so many spices!

The Spice House also had many different mixed blends that would give your taste buds a workout!
One thing that I bought last night was white truffle salt (use sparklingly). This will make a yummy egg treat for breakfast!

So the next time you want to mix up your egg routine, try any or a mix of these spices!
In honor of our evening I found a recipe from Food and Wine. Here is a recipe for a Spinach, Feta and Tarragon Frittata (used olive oil and spices). Enjoy and let your taste buds have fun-remember there is so much more beyond salt and pepper.

Let us know your favorite spices on eggs!

How do you like your eggs? Perfectly cooked!

By Marcia Greenblum, MS, RD
April 14th, 2011

Hi Readers!  Today we have one of our Registered Dietitian Advisors, Serena Ball, blogging.  Enjoy!

~ Marcia

I love eggs. I adore eating eat them. And as a registered dietitian and mom of three, I feel great about feeding them to my children. Most of all, I love how easy it is to cook a perfect egg.

Since my kitchen is often full of chaos, I count it as a small victory when perfectly cooked eggs emerge from the fray. Cooking perfectly creamy, satiny scrambled eggs is simple, as long as they are patiently cooked low (heat) and slow. The trick to a perfectly poached egg is a tablespoon of vinegar in the poaching water. Even custardy egg en cocottes (baked eggs) are now easy thanks to Julia Child’s video. However, preparing the perfect hardboiled egg has always eluded me; until now.

Thanks to my recent placement on the Egg Nutrition Center’s Registered Dietitian Advisory board, I was sent a press release containing simple instructions for perfect Easter eggs. Reading it was an “Ah-Ha Moment!” Finally, the elusive trick to perfectly cooked hardboiled egg: Don’t boil them! After years of boiling my eggs five minutes, then three minutes then one minute, I learned the secret to a hardboiled egg is to only bring the water to a boil and then immediately cover it and turn off the heat. (Boiling them will leave a green ring around the yolk and make whites tough.) In fact, the Incredible Egg folks don’t even call them hardboiled eggs, they call them hard-cooked eggs. Here are the three steps to perfect hard-cooked eggs:

  1. Place eggs in a single layer in a pan; add cold water to cover eggs by 1 inch. (Eggs that have sat in your refrigerator for a week – instead of fresh from the store – are easier to peel in the end.)
  2. Over high heat, bring to a full rolling boil where large bubbles break the surface of the water. (No, it’s not true that a ‘watched pot never boils;’ so go ahead and keep your eye on it.) Immediately remove from heat, cover pan, and set the timer for 15 minutes for large eggs (longer for extra large eggs).
  3. Use kitchen tongs or a slotted spoon to remove eggs and place in a bowl of ice cold water to chill. Crack, peel and eat or place in the refrigerator to enjoy later.

If you prefer not to sit and watch the pot boil, you can try this ingenious (but time-consuming) recipe for Slow Cooker Hardboiled eggs.

Or, if you like recipes in say, 140 characters or less, try this reci-tweet) for hard-cooked eggs: “To hard-cook eggs, just bring to boil, turn off heat & keep in covered pot for 15 min. Then cool in ice water” For more reci-tweets and helpful egg tips, join me, @TspCurry and @IncredibleEggs for a Twitter Party on April 20 at 8:00 p.m. CT.

Lastly, here’s a photo of one of my kids enjoying a favorite egg recipe from my own childhood. Here’s the recipe for silky smooth Egg Custard.   

Serena Ball, MS, RD is Partner at Teaspoon Communications and the egg cook for her husband and three children in Chicago.




ADA Times Highlights the Egg

By Marcia Greenblum, MS, RD
February 15th, 2011

It was a pleasant surprise last week when I browsed through my most recent issue of the ADA Times and found the Love Food 2 page spread on eggs.  Eggs have had quite a wild ride with dietitians, first being used clinically in beverages to boost nutrient intake when patients couldn’t or wouldn’t chew or needed a ready source of high quality protein. Then the egg’s reputation went into a tailspin both because of the misunderstanding regarding an association between egg intake and cardiovascular disease risk compounded by the fear of Salmonella Enteritidis which although is a concern, only affects 1 in 20,000 eggs and can be completely prevented if care is taken to avoid temperature abuse and prepared correctly.  At long last the egg appears to be making a comeback, although the ADA Times authors seem to qualify their enthusiasm.

I’m hoping that the newly published data from USDA finding that a large egg now has 14% less cholesterol, 186mg in fact, will help dietitians to overcome their skepticism about recommending eggs again. The contributing author Tejal Pathak MS,RD, LD makes the point that for individuals at risk for CVD or T2D including an egg in their daily diet is difficult. Hopefully, this will now appear to be less problematic and the many valuable nutrients one consumes when eating an egg yolk make it a highly worthwhile 70 calories. In addition, the author mentions that genetics should be considered when discussing egg intake. In fact, only 1/3 of the population responds at all by increasing blood lipids following egg intake. Those hyper-responders increase both LDL and HDL particles so there is no increase in CHD risk. (Fernandez  ML and Webb D, Am Coll Nutr, 2008, 27 (1) 1-5)

Carol White MS,RD offered some nice suggestions about the versatility of eggs and the amazing functionality of eggs in baked and cooked dishes and Amorette Hinely Reid a recent graduate of Johnson and Wales University discussed eggs used in food service. It is appropriate to use pasteurized eggs when serving vulnerable populations but to the extent that eggs can be thoroughly safe if thoroughly cooked, I don’t think it is necessary to suggest using pasteurized eggs for the average consumer. It is good to have the egg back in our arsenal of healthy foods and to have ADA recognize their value in the ADA Times publication.



Nutrition Unscrambled  is written by nutrition experts with the Egg Nutrition Center, which is funded by the American Egg Board. It is monitored and maintained by the public relations agency of record. The mission of the Egg Nutrition Center is to be a credible source of nutrition and health science information and the acknowledged leader in research and education related to eggs. For more information, click here.

About the Bloggers

Mitch Kanter, Ph.D. is the Executive Director of the Egg Nutrition Center. For more information about
Mitch, click here.
Marcia Greenblum, MS, RD is the Senior Director, Nutrition Education at the Egg Nutrition Center. For more information about Marcia, click here.
Anna Shlachter, MS, RD, LDN is the Program Manager, Nutrition Research and Communications at the Egg Nutrition Center. For more information about Anna, click here.

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All information provided within this blog is for informational and educational purposes only and it is not to be construed as medical advice or instruction. Please consult your physician or a qualified health professional on any matters regarding your health or before making changes to your diet or health behaviors.