- With Mayo Clinic nutritionists
Jennifer Nelson, M.S., R.D. and Katherine Zeratsky, R.D.read biographyclose window
Jennifer Nelson, M.S., R.D. and Katherine Zeratsky, R.D.Katherine Zeratsky and Jennifer Nelson
Jennifer K. Nelson, M.S., R.D., L.D., C.N.S.D.
Jennifer Nelson is your link to a better diet. As specialty editor of the nutrition and healthy eating guide, she plays a vital role in bringing you healthy recipes and meal planning.
"Nutrition is one way people have direct control over the quality of their lives," she says. "I hope to translate the science of nutrition into ways that people can select and prepare great-tasting foods that help maintain health and treat disease."
A St. Paul, Minn., native, she has been with Mayo Clinic since 1978, and is director of clinical dietetics and an associate professor of nutrition at Mayo Clinic College of Medicine.
She leads clinical nutrition efforts for a staff of more than 60 clinical dietitians and nine dietetic technicians and oversees nutrition services, staffing, strategic and financial planning, and quality improvement. Nelson was co-editor of the "Mayo Clinic Diet" and the James Beard Foundation Award-winning "The New Mayo Clinic Cookbook." She has been a contributing author to and reviewer of many other Mayo Clinic books, including "Mayo Clinic Healthy Weight for EveryBody," "The Mayo Clinic Family Health Book" and "The Mayo Clinic/Williams Sonoma Cookbook." She contributes to the strategic direction of the Food & Nutrition Center, which includes creating recipes and menus, reviewing nutrition content of various articles, and providing expert answers to nutrition questions.
Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.
As a specialty editor of the nutrition and healthy eating guide, Katherine Zeratsky helps you sort through the facts and figures, the fads and the hype to learn more about nutrition and diet.
A Marinette, Wis., native, she is certified in dietetics by the state of Minnesota and the American Dietetic Association. She has been with Mayo Clinic since 1999.
She's active in nutrition-related curriculum and course development in wellness nutrition at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and nutrition related to weight management and practical applications of nutrition-related lifestyle changes.
Other areas of interest include food and nutrition for all life stages, active lifestyles and the culinary arts.
She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, served a dietetic internship at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, and worked as a registered dietitian and health risk counselor at ThedaCare of Appleton, Wis., before joining the Mayo Clinic staff.
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March 13, 2012
Get your plate in shape
By Jennifer Nelson, M.S., R.D. and Katherine Zeratsky, R.D.
March is National Nutrition Month and this year's theme is "Get your plate in shape." Building on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and the release of MyPlate, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics wants you to pause before each meal to make sure you're eating the healthiest foods in the right amounts and in the right balance. Ask yourself these questions:
- Is half or more of my plate fruits or vegetables?
- Is no more than one-quarter of my plate grains, preferably whole grains?
- Is the remaining quarter lean protein about the size of a deck of cards?
March is the perfect time to take stock — after all spring is in the air and the mind turns to new beginnings. So why not try something new in the kitchen? Here are some dishes I've cooked up in my kitchen.
Veggies and fruits
- Wilted spinach topped with sauteed onions and mushrooms.
- Roasted red peppers, peeled and sprinkled with a bit of low-fat feta, fresh basil and balsamic vinegar. Asparagus, cauliflower, broccoli and beets are also good candidates. Just toss with a little oil and grill or roast.
- Soups loaded with vegetables. Try new flavor combinations: ginger and edamame (Asian), corn and chiles (Hispanic), fish and tomatoes (Mediterranean), or chickpeas and peanuts (African).
- Any fresh fruit, sliced and tossed with mint or cilantro. Or try a dash of cinnamon or a drizzle of maple syrup.
- Brown or wild rice mixed with veggies and herbs, or onions and fruit, and topped with a few chopped nuts.
- Quinoa mixed with diced tomatoes, cucumber, onion, parsley, a few olives and a squirt of lemon or lime juice.
- Whole-wheat pita bread stuffed with salad.
- Pan-seared fish with veggies, or fish and veggies cooked in foil packets.
- Tuna on top of salads or on a few whole wheat crackers as an appetizer.
- Thinly sliced poultry, beef or pork with grilled veggies.
How's your plate shaping up? What new things have you tried?
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