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Allison Righter, MSPH, RD

Allison Righter, MSPH, RD

Program Officer, Eating for the Future

Center for a Livable Future

Dietitians Get New Resource for Food Systems Approach

Dietetic intern Bernice Chu and community-based food work at the Franciscan Center, 2013.

Dietetic intern Bernice Chu did community-based food work at the Franciscan Center, 2013.

Registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs) just became better equipped to work within a broader food systems approach. This month, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) published a new set of Standards of Professional Performance (SOPP) in Sustainable, Resilient, and Healthy Food and Water Systems—this is one huge step forward in advancing the profession to more readily and effectively promote healthy food systems. Created by a working group within the Hunger and Environmental Nutrition Dietetic Practice Group and published in the March 2014 issue of the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, these SOPPs are a key resource Read More >

Harvard researchers raise another red flag over red meat

Veggies instead of meat to reduce type 2 diabetes?

You might want to think twice next time you pick up that pork chop or bite into a beef burger – the evidence linking red meat to health problems just got even stronger.

The same group of Harvard University researchers who incited a media hype in April by linking red meat consumption with mortality just released a new study documenting a connection between red meat intake and type 2 diabetes. While past meta-analyses have also linked both processed and unprocessed red meat with diabetes, the latest study tracked the risk of developing the disease over time with changes in the amount of red meat consumed. Read More >

Reflections from Workshop on Sustainable Diets

How are environment and nutrition connected?

Environment and nutrition, ecology and health. They’re all connected. And getting people to talk seriously about those connections is an urgent priority.

The Institute of Medicine hosted a landmark event earlier this month co-hosted by its Food Forum and Roundtable on Environmental Health Sciences, Research and Medicine, two seemingly disparate groups. The workshop, “Sustainable Diets: Food for Healthy People and a Healthy Planet” sought to break down these silos that too often exist Read More >

Franciscan Center Kicks Off Innovative Fresh Food Project

A typical CSA share

The Franciscan Center of Baltimore hosted a special kick-off event on Monday for its new healthy food initiative, the Fresh Harvest Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Project.

In collaboration with United Way of Central Maryland (UWCM), Molly Shattuck Vibrant Living, One Straw Farm, the University of Maryland Extension Food Supplement Nutrition Education Program (FSNE) and us at the Center for a Livable Future, the Franciscan Center will distribute free weekly CSA shares to 30 low-income people and families from June through November 2013. Read More >

Opa! Food For Thought Symposia at The Black Olive Kicks Off with a Bang

A selection of fish at the Black Olive

When it comes to food, the Greeks simply get it.

For them, food is so much more than just fuel; it is a way of life, a philosophy, a way of bringing people together to share fresh, local fare and most importantly, good company. Never have I experienced anything quite like this in the States until dining at The Black Olive, a fine Greek dining restaurant in Fells Point, whose mission extends far beyond serving authentic and organic Greek cuisine. Read More >

Nutrition Conference or Junk Food Expo? Reflections from a Confused Dietitian

Meatless Monday crew at FNCE 2012

Last week I returned from my first Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo (FNCE) hosted by the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics (AND) in Philadelphia, PA. As a relatively new Registered Dietitian, I didn’t really know what to expect from this conference and simply hoped to network with fellow dietitians and receive continuing education credits for attending informational sessions. Little did I know that those few days I spent in Philadelphia would be some of the most confusing, inspiring, revolting, enlightening, and motivating days of my professional career to date. Read More >

New Survey Shows Meatless Monday Makes Room for More Veggies

We are excited about the recent release of results from a national survey assessing awareness and impact of the growing Meatless Monday campaign. Not only has awareness of Meatless Monday been steadily increasing since it was founded in 2003, but the campaign is also positively influencing dietary behaviors. This year’s survey is the first in campaign history to evaluate the influence of Meatless Monday on the eating behaviors of consumers nationwide. The release comes just in time for the 2012 Food and Nutrition Conference (FNCE) in Philadelphia from Saturday through Tuesday, during which time dietitians and nutrition professionals from around the country will learn about the latest trends, research and products to help improve the nation’s health and advance the profession of dietetics. Using these new survey results, Meatless Monday hopes to mobilize more dietitians in support of this important initiative. Read More >

Reflections from the Heart: Celebrating Two Years of Serving Healthy Food with Dignity

Kim Gregory, director of food services at the Franciscan Center

Today marks the official two-year anniversary of the Healthy Monday program launch at the Franciscan Center, an emergency food assistance and outreach agency in Baltimore City. I realized this last Saturday evening while sitting in the beautiful Legg Mason Tower listening to my sister-in-law and opera sensation, Emily Righter, perform a benefit concert for this incredible organization.  A sold-out inaugural event with nearly 225 attendees, Voices from the Heart was an inspiring celebration of the people who have supported and been supported by the Center since it was founded by the Franciscan Sisters of Baltimore in 1968. Reflecting on my own involvement with the Center over the past two years in both personal and professional settings, I felt proud to have played and to continue to be playing just a small role in helping the Center fulfill its benevolent mission of assisting the poor and homeless community in Baltimore City build sustainable lives and realize their self-worth and dignity as people of God. Read More >

Real Men Eat Kale

Kale field | Hillsboro, Oregon, 1910

Another Memorial Day weekend has come and gone, and the unofficial summer season has begun. I don’t know about you, but when I think about kicking off summer, I automatically think about firing up the grill. Well, I think about my dad or fiancé or another male firing up the grill. And then I picture them throwing down some big slab of barbequed meat and chowing down.

Memorial Day = summer = grilling = men = meat. Why do I automatically make those associations?

According to a new study published in the Journal of Consumer Research, I am not alone. Through a series of studies that tested metaphors associated with food, researchers found that people do, in fact, link meat with manliness. Read More >

Survey Results from Sodexo’s Meatless Monday Initiative

Fewer than three weeks on the job and I have the privilege of writing my first official blog post about the release of exciting survey results from Sodexo’s Meatless Monday Initiative. Who is Sodexo and what are the exciting results, you ask?

First, let me introduce myself. I am the new Project Director of the Johns Hopkins Meatless Monday Project, which was launched in 2003 to serve as the scientific adviser to the national Meatless Monday campaign, a non-profit initiative of The Monday Campaigns in association with the Johns Hopkins’ Bloomberg School of Public Health (JHSPH). I recently completed my MSPH degree in Human Nutrition and certification as a Registered Dietitian through a coordinated program at the JHSPH. I am thrilled to be back at the Center in this capacity, and look forward to applying my knowledge, skills and enthusiasm surrounding food, nutrition, public health, and environmental sustainability to direct this exciting and dynamic project. Read More >