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A Comprehensive Approach to Overall Wellness

traci-fields-top-nutritionist-nycTo promote my clients overall quality of life through preventative medicine, medical nutrition therapy, supervised weight loss, bio-identical hormone replacement therapy and essential oils.  The use of any and all of these modalities has proven successful among all ages, sexes and backgrounds.

Through my unique and varied experience as a Registered Dietitian for 22 years and as a Physician Assistant for 15 years in many different specialties, I have acquired invaluable knowledge on how to approach the patient as a whole instead of treating each specific issue separately.

Using an integrative approach, I am able to achieve the best outcome for the benefit of my patient. Allow me to help you find the path to a healthy and fulfilling life-style.

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Areas of Practice

SUPERVISED MEDICAL WEIGHT LOSS & APPETITE SUPPRESSION


To achieve successful weight loss, a qualified professional needs to take into consideration an individual’s past medical history, physical exam findings, recent laboratory data, resting metabolic rate, and any food allergies and food intolerances. Additionally, an appetite suppressant is often a good augmentation for successful and lasting results.

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BIO-IDENTICAL HORMONE REPLACEMENT THERAPY


A practice that treats declining hormone levels that often occur with age. As an identical compound or molecule as the hormone itself, they often have fewer complications and are a more tolerated treatment and have been shown to have a reliable outcome.

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MEDICAL NUTRITION THERAPY


Medical nutrition therapy (MNT) is the development of a nutritional treatment or therapy based on a comprehensive assessment of a person’s medical history, physical examination, and dietary history. It is effective in treating existing conditions or as a way to prevent and avoid disease or complications related to disease states.

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NUTRITION SUPPLEMENTATION


Medical grade meal replacements recommended by a qualified professional are often a useful part of any weight loss or nutrition plan. Whether losing weight, maintaining weight or for a generally healthful nutrition lifestyle, supplements are often necessary. This includes vitamins, minerals, and many other formulations such as herbs, amino acids and pro-hormones just to name a few.

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PREVENTATIVE MEDICINE


Through education and awareness, preventative medicine is a practice that focuses on disease prevention and management. The outcomes of preventative medicine benefits not just the individual but the entire community.

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ESSENTIAL OILS


Essential oils are concentrated plant extracts that prove to be more powerful than the botanical itself. Whether it be a single oil, a blend of oils or an oil-infused product, they can be used for aromatherapy, topically or internally. Essential oils have been proven to help with a variety of issues from fatigue, weight loss and depression.

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Some Common Misconceptions on Nutrition Explained

nutritionist nycWe are what we eat. But, most people fail to realize that we continue to make dozens of unconscious choices about what we eat, without knowing the reality behind them.

However, there are a few misconceptions about nutrition that lead people to believe in many absurdities, leading to a poor diet. After all, a lot of people depend on a nutritionist in NYC for a healthy life.

Here are some nutrition misconceptions people have and the truth behind the myths.

Eat whatever you want if you Exercise

It is common for many of us to indulge in a high fat or carb enriched diet if we are on a workout program. In reality, you will need to swim laps for an hour to burn the calories you consumed in an order of large fries. The same goes for other foods such pizza. Compliment your exercise routine with a nutritional diet by consulting with the best nutritionist in NYC.

Flax is one of the best sources of Omega-3

nutritionist nyc

Although flax is a great source of fiber, it is not exactly the best source of omega-3. There are many kinds of omega-e fats. The types that are found in plants such as flax seeds is referred to as the ALA type. There are other types including DHA and EPA, which are present in fatty fish including sardines, tuna and salmon. So, the next time you are sprinkling ground flax on your food to get a quick omega-3 fix; think wisely.

Have at least 8 glasses of Water Every Day

There is no denying the fact that water helps us to stay hydrated. Having 8 glasses of water can leave miraculously healthy effects on our body. However, it doesn’t mean that you should not have citrus fruits or natural juices.

The key is to stay hydrated and saying no to beverages such as coffee, soda and artificially sweetened juices.

Take a Multi-vitamin every day

Supplements are great for taking care of mineral and vitamin deficiencies. However, they are not a panacea for everything. Many multi-vitamins seem harmless but can leave detrimental effects on your health when taken for longer periods of time.

Always ask your doctor to recommend an FDA approved supplement to add nutrition to your diet.

nutrtionist nycCoconut oil is a healthy alternative to olive oil

Thanks to a new research, coconut oil is no longer considered as the best alternative to olive oil. This is because it does not have the same beneficial effects as olive oil for improved heart health. There is nothing wrong in using coconut oil occasionally. However, stick to olive oil for maintaining good health. You can refer to a certified nutritionist in NYC for an optimal diet plan.

Ban Junk Food for Life

Junk food is notorious for wreaking havoc on your body. In reality, you can add some candy, cookies and chocolate bars into your diet; provided you pay attention to portion control. Just make sure you don’t go overboard and leave junk food for social gatherings and parties.

Final Thoughts
If you have any other misconceptions about food and nutrition, only a certified nutritionist can clear away your doubts. Get in touch with us today to get an appointment with the best nutritionist in NYC.

Call us at 646-760-3438 to schedule a consultation with the best nutritionist in NYC.

Dietitians Immune Boosting Daily Power Pack

As fall weather and winter months approach it is important to keep our immune system in tip-top shape in order to stay healthy and avoid things like the common cold and flu. Nutrition is a great component to any immune boosting regimen. Healthy eating, daily exercise, and stress management can boost the immune system significantly.
There is one nutritional recommendation in particular which can be added to any daily health regimen. It will help to strengthen your immune system, provide adequate fiber which can also regulate bowel movement.

What you will need to do is prepare a Ziploc bag of fresh, raw vegetables.

Here’s the plan:

Immune Boosting Daily Power Pack

Eat from the rainbow by creating this immune boosting and detoxifying snack pack. Gather a variety of fresh, raw vegetables in a sandwich size Ziploc bag or 4-6oz container. Raw vegetables will keep better throughout the day under refrigeration and tend to be more nutrient dense when compared to cooking. If you do not have refrigeration, consider investing in a storage container that has a cold-pack built into the lid or store the vegetables with an icepack.

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Your goal is to snack on these vegetables throughout the day. Challenge yourself to finish the container of veggies by the time work is over, before dinner, by the end of day, etc. Remember to also stay hydrated by consuming at least 8 glasses of water per day.

The variety of vegetables to pack can include 3-7 different types of the following (vegetables are not limited to this list, eat what you enjoy or have at home):

  • Carrots
  • Bell peppers (red, orange, yellow, green)
  • Broccoli
  • Celery
  • Radish
  • Kale (several leaves)
  • Spinach (small handful or a few leaves)
  • Purple Cabbage (small handful shredded)
  • Button Mushrooms
  • Cucumber
  • Cauliflower
  • Grape/Cherry tomatoes
  • Why eat a bag of raw vegetables?

Raw vegetables provide readily available vitamins and minerals and are rich in enzymes. These naturally occurring enzymes make vegetables easily digested for most people. Different colors of vegetables contain many different nutrients. Some nutrients help to detoxify the system, others help to lower inflammation, improve digestion, and more. Each of these functions help to strength the immune system and prevent illness.

I recommend preparing an extra-large batch of vegetables, cut, dried, and packed on a Sunday so that it is ready for the week. You can prepare 5 Ziploc bags of the vegetables so that all you need to do each morning is grab-and-go.

Disclaimer: If you have been instructed to follow a low fiber diet, discuss any dietary changes with your medical doctor and/or registered dietitian before beginning. If you consume less than the recommended amount of dietary fiber every day (Men: 38 grams per day. Women: 25 grams per day) increase your vegetables consumption gradually to prevent constipation.

Fast Food

medical-nutritionist-nycThe calorie content of the average fast-food meal has changed drastically since the 1960’s when these establishments took off. Rather than bashing the fast-food industry, I aim to provide a fun, but serious fact about fast-food in this day-and-age, as well as, empowering you to more consciously pay attention to the food you select.

In the 1960’s an average fast food meal consisting of a hamburger, fries, and 12-oz cola provided 590 calories and today this same meal is 1,500 calories …or more.
Majority of us require no more than 2,000 calories, per day. 1,500 calories for one meal is a lot when put into perspective! But it’s more than just “calories” it’s what those calories are made of (nutritious vs. non-nutritious).

The super-sized meal is our countries idea of “value” and “savings.” I grew up being “treated” to fast-food a few times a month by my mom or parents of friends. I remember having the kid’s meal, and being SO excited for the toy! Sure this food had no nutritional value, but the experience is what I loved. While it’s the experience of eating food with no nutritional value is something I no longer wish to have, I realize that one day I’d like to encourage my own children to have healthier experiences. Fast-food was HUGE when the baby boomer generation grew up (1946-1964), and there wasn’t much to dislike about it. It was cheap, convenient, innovative, and a social experience among teens, children and families. There were also no signs of heart disease or other health complications associated with this type of food. Many parent-to-child relationships bask/ed in the experience of having a “happy meal” because it connects those from the baby boomer generation, generation X generation Y, and millennials in some way. It evokes wonderful memories of the parents childhood which is then shared in their own child’s upbringing. And this is exactly what the food industry wants you to tap into.

The point is, times are changing, and when someone says …”Whats really so bad about fast-food?” Maybe we should stop and think about the changing times. I’ll just come out and say it. I don’t think we should feed our youth or ourselves this food because the truth is, times are changing. The way meat is produced for fast-food chains is changing every year, and much of it is becoming nutritionally non-existent, and also pretty toxic. Soda is difficult on the bones, teeth, stomach, blood glucose levels, fat storage, etc., and french fries can become carcinogenic (cancerous) when fillers are added to them and cooked in oil which is from a cheap source and used again and again.

Right now we have access to great food! With healthier food options becoming more in demand, prices are dropping. A little savvy health conscious shopping goes a long way on a budget these days. Ask the dietitian for help getting started if you are interested. Plus, there are so many innovative ideas which sneak in healthier foods and taste great. I open this blog article to you as an opportunity to comment or email me for tips and suggestions.

It blew my mind to see 590 calories, jump to 1,500, for one meal. That’s a 900 calorie increase in fat, carbohydrates, sugar content, for the same meal (much bigger portion)!

Nutrition is a preventative measure to help you enjoy life as a healthy, thriving individual no matter what age or health status. Finding inspiration and feeling empowered to take control of your health is an incredible venture, and small, manageable changes is all it takes. You’ve just got to do your best. We’re not perfect, we are only human, but we do have more options available to us than we might think.

Health and wellness to you,
-Sara DC

Is it true that an athlete can eat whatever they want?

sports nutrition nyc athlete foodIn my nutrition practice, I wear two hats. Almost 50% of my clients are athletes looking for sports nutrition, while the other half are a mix of weight loss, disease management such as cholesterol, diabetes and eating disorders, and those clients who want to “redistribute the trunk region” and lean out.

In this blog, I’d like to highlight the difference between sports nutrition for athletes in training, and the 45 minute athlete. My 45 minute athletes are under the misconception that they can eat whatever they want because that’s the best part about being an athlete. And they get frustrated when they cannot get an athletic build similar to that of their athlete friend (who happens to train 1.5-2 hours daily for triathlons). The frustrating reality is that you will typically burn only about 200 calories doing a 2 mile run. And you can put that 200 right back in by eating 2 TBSP of mayo. But here is the other frustrating reality: those athletes who appear to be eating “whatever they want”, are far more regimented than they lead you to believe. True, they need more calories, but they will not be getting those calories from mayo or other “inefficient”foods. They are fueling their bodies with just the right proportions of protein, carbs, and fat. There is no such thing as a free pass to eat whatever crap you want – this has repercussions for both the 45 min athlete and the full time athlete. The difference is that the athlete’s diet is planned, and leaves room for the occasional crap meal. And this is the great news: as a 45 minute athlete you can plan for this too! It will be your unique plan to suit your activity and your needs. If you want to call yourself an athlete, you have to act like an athlete and embrace the challenge fully. Not just one stand alone part of it, and expect results. Everything is connected. Believe me – if my athlete clients are eating like crap, they are NOT performing their best, and their condition is not where they want to be at.

This is the best part of working with a nutritionist. We do all the planning for you to give you the tools necessary to execute on the body that you’ve always wanted!!

High Cholesterol Diet

best nutritionist nyc high cholesterol foods v1If you suffer from high cholesterol, then like many others, you are confused about what type of “cholesterol free” diet you should be adhering to.
The most common misconception is that you need to give up any animal product that contains cholesterol; such as eggs, meat, cheese, etc. True, those should be eaten in moderation if you have cholesterol or weight issues. However, your body actually needs cholesterol. And natural animal fat and cholesterol are not your enemies. The enemies are the man made products that your body was not made to digest. Examples are hydrogenated oils which are found in most baked goods, cereals, breads, and granola bars. Another example is the refined carbs found in white bread, muffins, bagels and hundreds of other items. These lead your body to store “bad” fat. Anything that is processed or manmade will lead to high cholesterol and, eventually, weight issues.

Tips for Controlling Your Cholesterol

The following is a list of points to consider if you have cholesterol issues. They are in random order, and not based on scientific findings, but much of research on my part, as well as reoccurring positive results in my clients.
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  • Eggs are awesome, but must be organic, or better yet from the farmers’ market. Any eggs that are not organic will come from chicken that are fed processed food, which causes bad fat to accumulate. You are what you eat. Limit to 2 whole eggs MAX a day.
  • Any meat with the word “loin” in it is lean. It is the only cut that you should ever have if you must eat meat. Grass fed is optimal for the same reason as the egg and the chicken.
  • Cut out all refined carbs such as white bread, pancakes, fries, muffins, cupcakes, etc. Not only are they all sugar, but they are likely made with hydrogenated oils.
  • Eat lots of fish. Wild salmon is best because it contains the least amount of mercury. The good fat, and Omega 3’s help control your cholesterol.
  • Do not butter your breads. Dip in extra virgin olive oil. The monosaturated fats in the oil help control cholesterol.
  • Exercise. This helps raise your HDL levels (good cholesterol), and lower your LDL (bad cholesterol). It’s a win win.
  • Hydrogenated oils raise LDL (bad cholesterol) and lower HDL (good cholesterol) simultaneously. Obviously, the worst offender, and lose lose situation.
  • Keep saturated fats to a minimum. This means no cream sauces, cream dressings, half half with your coffee, cheeses.
  • The verdict is still out on exactly how harmful saturated fats are. In my opinion, “clean” saturated fats are ok. But those are tough to get. By clean I mean cheeses made from grass fed cows, as well as cream and butter made from the milk of grass fed cows. The problem is that anytime anything contains saturated fats, it is usually a highly caloric item which contains other (processed) fats, and comes from an “unclean” animal. This means that: the cows are fed corn and feedlot food which makes them unnaturally fat. When we eat this meat, we are ingesting the worst kind of saturated fat.

If you are suffering from high cholesterol, cut out all processed and “bad fat” foods from your diet, and eat clean. Eat fresh veggies, lots of fish and organic chicken (no skin), and fruits. Think of what people would have eaten 80 years ago, and eat only that.  And exercise. Those with cholesterol issues are wise to seek the advice of a nutritionist to help them plan their meals, and help them see that eating clean and healthy food is attainable, available, and abundant. Befriend your local farmers!

Healthy Snack Ideas

The concept of eating frequently throughout the day to fuel your metabolism is becoming main stream now. You burn most of your daily calories just by “being alive”, so the best way to manage your weight and the calories that you burn is to keep your metabolism constantly burning. Your metabolism is like a flame. You want to add just enough logs to the fire so as to keep it burning steadily. Add too much, and it will extinguish. Add too little, and it will not have the necessary fuel to keep the flame burning. Consequently, in order to keep your flame steadily burning, you must eat moderate portion size meals every 2-3 hours, and never feel hungry (flame extinguishing).

The concept is fantastic. But finding the right snacks to eat which contain the right amount of calories, macro nutrients, and do not bore you, is a bit of a challenge.

Here are 10 of my favorite snacks:

  1. 4 oz of non- fat Greek yogurt, ½ cup of almond milk, and a fist full of Kashi High Protein/high fiber
  2. 6 oz of Greek non-fat yogurt, 1 TBSP raw honey, 6 raw, unsalted almonds
  3. 2 turkey roll ups (or use smoked salmon). Spread mustard on turkey and roll up. Eat with baby carrots or celery sticks.
  4. ½ banana, 2 TBSP natural peanut butter, 2 oz of non-fat Greek yogurt. Stir together.
  5. Frozen grapes. Freeze grapes and eat with fistful of nuts.
  6. Boiled egg with hummus and baby carrots
  7. Brad’s Kale Chips
  8. 6 woven wheats (365 brand from Whole Foods) with salsa, hummus or guacamole
  9. Lara bar (for those days when you can’t catch a break but need something fast!)
  10. Apple with low fat cottage cheese

Snacks to avoid:

  1. Anything containing sugar or artificial sweeteners
  2. Anything processed
  3. Muffins, cupcakes, pasta, liquid calories
  4. Anything high on the glycemic index (GI) scale

Anytime you eat anything containing simple (refined carbs) or sugar, you deregulate your sugar levels, get a quick fix, but only to feel hungry minutes later. This calorie dense food is not going to keep you lean and energetic! Ensure that you are getting a dose of protein with every snack or meal to keep you satiated and energized.

Nuts are a wonderful snack, but make sure that they are sodium free and raw (not roasted as this exposes them to harmful oils and free radicals). As with everything, eat nuts in moderation. Nuts are healthy, but they are high in fat, and too much of a good thing will always get you into trouble.

At EatFit, my clients find that one of the biggest challenges is to find healthy and “clean” snacks. I’m constantly being creative to make up new snacks, whether it be on the go (busy, busy, no time to eat) client, the traveling from flight to flight to airport client, my vegan/vegetarian clients, or my athlete clients. Snacking is an art, and I have a database of (literally) HUNDREDS of them!!!

Eating Clean Tips from NYC Nutritionist

image“Eat Clean” – I’m sure that you have heard this term used numerous times. As a nutritionist, I use it far too often (and I don’t mean wash your fruits and vegetables!). Here is what the term ‘eating clean’ really means:
 

  • Eat within an hour of waking up, and continue to eat small meals every 2-3 hours.
  • Combine lean protein with complex carbs at every meal.
  • Include “good” fat from fish, nuts, avocado and olive oil in your diet.
  • Avoid trans and hydrogenated fats. Keep saturated fats to a minimum.
  • Drink 7-12 glasses of water a day (depending on your weight).
  • Eat fresh vegetables and fruits, and get enough fiber.
  • As much as possible prepare your meals boiled, steamed or grilled.
  • Choose unsalted dry roasted or raw nuts.
  • Avoid refined, processed and packaged foods.
  • Choose yogurt, nuts, and other fresh snacks rather than protein bars and snack bars.
  • Avoid “liquid” calories even from juices. If you MUST drink fruit juice, only drink freshly squeezed. And make sure they squeeze the juice on the premises (or squeeze it yourself). However, it is much better to have whole fruits for healthy weight maintenance. Quick digression (my BIGGEST pet peeve is seeing “freshly squeezed” OJ on the menu, and then getting something that tastes sugary and from concentrate – SO many places “trick” you this way. BEWARE!)
  • Avoid alcohol as much as possible.
  • Limit caffeine.

Nutritionist NYC: What are Complex Carbs?

complex carbs nutritionist nycComplex carbs are rich in fiber which improves your digestion. They provide you with a steady stream of energy, and should account for about half the calories in your diet. They help stabilize your blood sugar and mood, and keep you feeling satiated longer. They are low to moderate on the glycemic index.

Some examples of complex carbs are vegetables, whole barley, buckwheat, oatmeal, muesli, whole wheat bread, wild and brown rice, pinto beans, skim milk, spelt bread, grapefruit, apples, strawberries, oranges, quinoa, lentils, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, and more.

On the other hand, simple carbs and sugars can cause swings in blood sugar and mood, lead to cravings and compulsive eating, and cause weight gain in the majority of people. They are calorie dense, and often result in overconsumption since they metabolize quickly causing you to feel hungry shortly after eating. These should be kept to a minimum in your nutrition plan.

If you are an athlete and focused on sports nutrition, then you will find that simple carbs provide the best immediate (pre workout) fuel when faced with a short digestion time, such as in the case of early morning training sessions. Simple carbs are the best choice for recovery meals, since they are quickly absorbed and replace glycogen at the fastest rate. Bear in mind, that these guidelines are for athletes, and for those in training only. For most of us, our workouts are not intense enough to warrant the need for strict fueling guidelines. For healthy weight maintenance, the general rule is to avoid simple carbs as much as possible.

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Sports Nutrition – POWER TO WEIGHT RATIO

crosstraining power to weight ratioBeing a nutritionist in New York City is the best, mainly because I have such a vast cross section of clients, all with specific needs and intelligent questions. New Yorkers know what they want and I love that about us!

The look on my sports nutrition clients’ faces is priceless when they discover just how much they have to eat in order to fuel their bodies. It’s so rewarding to watch these people’s performance and energy levels improve just after one week of eating the right “fuel”.

One of the main concerns that endurance athletes have when seeing the vast amount of calories that they need, is weight gain and more specifically, their power to weight (P:W) ratio. The idea behind the P:W ratio is that there is an ideal body composition for maximum performance obtained by having the most efficient body. However, this does not necessarily equate to a “one-dimensional” scale number. Most often, the most efficient body is one with the lowest body fat percentage, and not necessarily one with the lowest weight number.

The predominant way to decrease body fat percentage is to build muscle and to replace body fat with it. Ironically, in order to build muscle, the body needs more calories. In fact, an additional 350-500 calories DAILY are needed to gain one pound of muscle mass per WEEK.

Muscle building can be added to your daily routine through cross training. In fact, to decrease body fat levels, cross training is a crucial component to your training regime. When you are ready to change your body composition, keep the following guidelines in mind:

· Although contra-indicative to what one may think, calorie restriction is most often NOT the answer. Restricting calories can result in inadequate carbohydrate intake for the volume and intensity of training, and can cause loss of lean body mass. This is the opposite effect to what an athlete wants, and can result in an increased body fat percentage (definitely not what you want!)

· Conversely, calories should be increased for the increased energy that it takes to build muscle, over and above the calories that your body needs for specific endurance sport training.

· While strength building, having enough protein in the diet is key, and the timing of intake is very important.

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Sports Nutrition; Fueling the Athlete’s Body

sportsNutrition plays a vital role in all activity. After all, food is what fuels all your daily activities. Many of my clients work our everyday and burn hundreds of calories. They spin, run, strength train, but cannot get the lean body they desire and wonder why. Once they realize that the missing link is in the food that they’re eating, they start seeing results almost immediately. Whether it be getting a lean body, or choosing the right foods to fuel endurance activities for optimum energy, nutrition always winds up being the missing link.

I love pointing out this analogy to my clients: if you were to own a premium vehicle like a Porsche, you would never dream of putting anything other than premium fuel in it would you? You would polish it, buff it, and never think of letting it go low on oil or any other fluids that it needs to run efficiently and optimally. Yet, we are so neglectful of our body’s needs. Food has become an inconvenience, and we shovel in whatever is easiest without regard to planning ahead or picking what is premium fuel to fuel our daily activity needs.

And unless you have a super specific athletic need such as body building, or you’re an endurance athlete who is a vegetarian, for the most part, you will not need supplements and get far greater results with real food. The trick is in the timing and in the proportions of macronutrients that each individual needs.

Yes, you need to eat before working out, and yes there is a specific window of time after your workout where you need to consume carbs and protein. Otherwise, your body will not build muscle adequately and will not be able to replenish its glycogen stores. And yes, you need to replace the fluids that you’ve lost, and water is usually enough (with some exceptions). I love my sports nutrition clients. It’s so rewarding to see the results that they get as soon as they become aware of how to use food wisely and efficiently. And you do not have to be an athlete to qualify as a sports nutrition client. Sports nutrition applies to anyone who works out regularly and/or leads and active lifestyle and is not getting the results that they should be.

Stay tuned for another blog coming up soon with some useful tips!

 
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