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Find out the latest health and organic news from our resident dietitian, Rebecca, along with recipes, tips and more!

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IMPORTANT NOTICE: AWG provides the Dietitian's Corner blogger(s) with free products and compensation for posts.

The content posted here is for general informational purposes only and is not medical advice. Health information changes frequently as research evolves. You should not rely on any information here as a substitute for consultation with medical professionals.

Making the Most of Pumpkin Season

Pumpkin centric recipes are a theme this time of year. From lattes to bread and soup to casseroles, pumpkin becomes a staple ingredient in October. The beautiful thing about pumpkin is its versatility and its nutritional value. Pumpkin offers vitamin C, vitamin A and potassium which have multiple heart health benefits and the ability to help lower blood pressure.

Easy and delicious ways to add pumpkin to your diet is by adding roasted pumpkin chunks to veggie dishes or casseroles. Pumpkin seeds also go great atop salad, yogurt and smoothie bowls. Desserts flavored with pumpkin aren’t necessarily the best way to add nutrients to your meal plan. However, using pumpkin purée as a substitute for butter or oil in baked goods is a great way to incorporate vegetables to smoothies or sweet breads. Watch the Clearly Organic blog for pumpkin recipes throughout the month of October!

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Primavera with Pesto Avocado Cream

For the Primavera:
3 cups fresh spinach leaves, chopped
2 Tablespoons Clearly Organic Olive Oil
1 package mushrooms, chopped
1/2 of a medium size yellow onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 1/2 cups Clearly Organic Whole Wheat Pasta

For the pesto avocado cream:
1 avocado, pitted
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
2 Tablespoons pesto
1 Tablespoon Clearly Organic Olive Oil

Place chopped spinach leaves in a large salad bowl. In a sauté pan add olive oil, chopped mushrooms, chopped onion and chopped garlic clove. Heat over medium heat until onions are translucent and mushrooms are lightly sautéed. While vegetables are cooking boil water for noodles and cook 1 1/2 cups of whole wheat noodles according to package. When noodles have reached desired doneness drain and add to spinach in the salad bowl. Toss noodles and spinach together so warm noodles slightly wilt the spinach leaves. Then add mushroom, onion and garlic mixture to the salad bowl. Toss veggies and noodles together.
Prepare the pesto avocado cream by adding avocado, lemon juice, pesto and olive oil to a small blender or food processor. Process until ingredients are smooth and creamy. Add avocado cream to vegetable mixture in the salad bowl. Gently stir to combine flavors.
Serve topped with Parmesan cheese and chopped tomatoes if desired. This dish doesn’t reheat well so it’s best enjoyed the same day.

 

Primavera with Pesto Avocado Cream

 

Primavera with Pesto Avocado Cream

 

Primavera with Pesto Avocado Cream

 

Primavera with Pesto Avocado Cream

 

Primavera with Pesto Avocado Cream

 

Primavera with Pesto Avocado Cream

 

 

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How to Make a Healthy Cream Sauce

As the comfort food season approaches it’s good to know there are healthy and delicious options for making pasta and veggie dishes creamy and flavorful. Cream sauces have a reputation for being high calorie and high fat options. However, there are multiple ways to make a creamy recipe health conscious and crowd pleasing.

One way to make a healthy cream sauce is to use vegetable broth and Greek yogurt as a base. Another all natural dairy free choice is to use avocados and olive oil as the primary cream source. Both of these options provide healthier fats and fewer calories verses using heavy cream. Watch the Clearly Organic blog to learn how to combine these ingredients into a deliciously healthy cream sauce.

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Classic Cucumber Salad

2 medium size cucumbers, peeled and sliced
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup white vinegar
2 Tablespoons Clearly Organic Sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon Clearly Organic Ground Pepper

Peel and chop cucumber and place in a salad bowl. Slice tomato and put in bowl with cucumber. In a small separate bowl add sugar, vinegar, salt and pepper. Whisk together until sugar dissolves. Pour vinegar dressing over the top of cucumber and tomatoes. Stir to evenly distribute. Let marinate in the refrigerator for at least an hour. Serve chilled.

 

Classic Cucumber Salad

 

Classic Cucumber Salad
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Cashew Chicken Salad

This refreshing and filling chicken salad is the perfect combo for lunch or dinner. It has a hearty amount of protein from the chicken, cashews and yogurt. This salad also provides 3 full servings of vegetables. Enjoy your chicken salad served over leafy greens or on whole grain bread with avocado!

1 1/2 cups English cucumber, chopped
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
2 1/2 cups cooked chicken, chopped
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1/4 cup light mayo
1/2 cup Clearly Organic Cashews, chopped
1/2 teaspoon Clearly Organic Ground Pepper

Place chopped cucumber, cherry tomatoes, red onion and cooked chicken in a mixing bowl. Stir to combine. Add Greek yogurt, mayo, chopped cashews and pepper. Gently stir contents again. Serve immediately or refrigerate in a sealed container for up to 5 days. This mixture goes great over leafy greens or on whole grain bread.

 

Cashew Chicken Salad

 

Cashew Chicken Salad

 

Cashew Chicken Salad
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Digestive Health

The two biggest factors that impact your digestive health are the foods that you eat and your everyday lifestyle choices. If we neglect to consider our digestive health needs then our system will likely experience issues absorbing vital nutrients. Here are 5 ways to improve your digestive wellbeing.

  1. Consume whole foods rich in fiber such as vegetables, whole grains, berries and legumes.
  2. Stay hydrated. Drinking plenty of water throughout the day allows your bowels to flow more freely.
  3. Find sustainable stress reducing activities. Stress contributes to ulcers and heartburn so managing stress can impact your digestive wellbeing.
  4. Exercise. Regular activity can not only help maintain weight it also reduces constipation.
  5. Enjoy more natural probiotic containing foods such as yogurt, pickled cucumbers, kombucha and some cheeses (mozzarella, Gouda, aged cheddar and cottage cheese).
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Flavors of Fall Pizza

1 prepared pizza crust
1/4 cup Clearly Organic Olive Oil
2 cups roasted butternut squash
1 Tablespoon garlic, minced
2 cups fresh baby spinach leaves, chopped
1/3 cup walnuts, chopped
4 oz goat cheese

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place prepared pizza crust on a pan. Drizzle olive oil on crust and evenly distribute with brush or back of spoon. Top with roasted butternut squash, minced garlic, chopped spinach, walnuts and goat cheese. Bake in preheated oven until crust edges are slightly brown about 15 to 18 minutes.

 

Flavors of Fall Pizza

 

Flavors of Fall Pizza

 

Flavors of Fall Pizza

 

Flavors of Fall Pizza

 

Flavors of Fall Pizza
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Health Benefits of Walnuts

Walnuts are a super food that contain many beneficial nutritional components. Incorporating walnuts and a variety of other tree nuts into your daily routine not only adds flavor and texture it can boost your overall wellbeing. Here are 3 benefits of eating walnuts consistently.

1. The omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids in walnuts make them the perfect food to help with memory enhancement and cognitive functioning.

2. Out of the entire tree nut family walnuts have one of the highest concentrations of antioxidants. Which means these tiny nuts can help prevent the growth of certain types of cancers.

3. The monounsaturated fats in walnuts help keep your heart strong. The nutrients in walnuts help lower LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) and raise your good cholesterol.

Consider adding walnuts to your next salad, bowl of oats, yogurt or cottage cheese. These small nuts pack a big nutritional punch.

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Breakfast Bowls

If you like to keep things interesting in the morning, then you’ll never get bored with a breakfast bowl. Skip the sugary cereal and consider keeping these wholesome ingredients stocked in your kitchen. Here are 4 breakfast bowl combinations that incorporate vegetables, fruit, lean proteins and whole grains.

The Classic Breakfast Bowl: 3/4 cup plain yogurt, 1/2 cup berries, half a banana (sliced) and 1/4 cup granola.

The Veggie Bowl: 1/2 cup cooked quinoa, 1 cup seasoned wilted spinach, 2 Tablespoons cheddar cheese, 2 poached eggs.

The Cherry Tomato Bowl: 1/2 cup cottage cheese, 3/4 cup cherry tomatoes cut in half and seasoned with salt and pepper, 1 Tablespoon Clearly Organic Flax Hemp Blend.

The Oat Bowl: 3/4 cup prepared overnight oats with chia seeds, 1/2 cup fresh seasonal fruit, 1 Tablespoon almond butter.

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Zucchini Waffles

1 1/2 cups zucchini, shredded
2 eggs
2 Tablespoons Clearly Organic Butter, melted
1 cup Clearly Organic Almond Milk
1/2 cup Greek yogurt
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup Clearly Organic Old Fashioned Oats
2 Tablespoons Clearly Organic Flax Hemp Blend
1 Tablespoon baking powder
2 Tablespoons Clearly Organic Brown Sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon Clearly Organic Ground Cinnamon
1/4 cup Clearly Organic Raisins (optional)

Shred zucchini and place in a tea towel over a mixing bowl. Squeeze out excess water from zucchini. Discard excess water from zucchini. Then place zucchini, eggs, butter, milk and yogurt in a bowl. Stir to combine. Add flour, oats, flax hemp blend, baking powder, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon and raisins. Stir to evenly distribute ingredients. Pour batter into preheated waffle iron. Cook until waffle is slightly brown and crisp. Serve with Clearly Organic Maple Syrup.

 

Zucchini Waffles

 

Zucchini Waffles

 

Zucchini Waffles

 

Zucchini Waffles

 

Zucchini Waffles

 

Zucchini Waffles

 

Zucchini Waffles
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