The Science of Integrative Nutrition


Can We Say What Diet Is Best for Health?

Yes! The existing literature on nutrition strongly supports a common theme of dietary principles, whether low-carb, low-fat, Mediterranean, or Paleo.

What does it broil down to?  

Limiting that which we know isn't doing us any good: refined starches, added sugars, processed foods, and harmful fats; emphasizing whole plant foods; with or without lean meats, fish, poultry, seafood.

Michael Pollan knows his nutrition in a spot-on sentence: "Eat food, not too much, mostly plants."

i can't get no...satisfaction?

Can smaller portion sizes be as satisfying as larger ones?In this study, those given larger portions (5-10x) of snack foods (chocolate, apple pie, or potato chips) consumed 77% more food, amounting to 103 more calories, but did not feel any more satiety than the group with the smaller portions. The smaller portion was just as satisfying! So, next time you're about to have a (tasty + healthy) snack, know that in 15 minutes you'll feel just as satisfied with one handful as you would with two. 

 Gardner et al.  Journal Consum. Psych.  2014

Gardner et al. Journal Consum. Psych. 2014

Good Food, Good mood or vice versa?

When we feel uncomfortable and in a bad mood, our mind tends to focus on what went wrong, in the here and now. This kind of thinking hones in on the sensory qualities of food – not things that are more abstract like health and nutrition benefits.  However, when we're in a good mood, things seem okay and we can take a big picture perspective, allowing the focus to be more abstract on positive health benefits.

The study results here show we select healthy or indulgent foods depending on whether we're in a good or a bad mood, respectively. When we're in a positive mood, healthier food choices happen easier, since we're not as focused on the immediate taste and sensory experience. So how to make the mind-behavior transition for better health? Re-focusing on something other than the present - like the Fabulous Self 2.0