Food For Thought

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					                               A Q UA RT E R LY N E W S L E T T E R B Y F O O D G RO U P @ U W

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               Food For Thought
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                                                                                                  June 4, 2009

                                                                                                         this Iss

                                                                                                  Menu Labeling	                 	          2
                                                                                                  Read about why restaurants are now
                                                                                                  required to list calories on their menu!

                                                                                                  Soda Tax	            	         	          3
                                                                                                  A possible way to combat our obesity

           SWEET CHERRIES                                                                         Spring Quarter Highlights	 3
                                                                                                  Find out what fun activities the Food
                                                                                                  Group participated in this quarter!

    Seasonal Spotlight                                                                            Alumni Spotlight	              	
                                                                                                  An interview with UW Nutritional

                                                                                                  Sciences alum Janice Kao, MPH!
by S imon e ep p ic h
        id you know that Washington State        Cherry Cornmeal                                   Whisk flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and

D       produces over half of all sweet
        cherries grown in the US? Pretty
        amazing. Cherries are truly still a
                                                 Upside-Down Cake
                                                                                                   salt in medium bowl to blend. Using electric
                                                                                                   mixer, beat 1/2 cup butter in large bowl.
                                                                                                   Add sugar; beat until pale and fluffy, about
seasonal crop, locally available only from       (makes 10 servings)                               3 minutes. Beat in egg yolks and vanilla.
early June to late August. They are a            3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room      Add flour mixture alternately with milk in 2
sensitive fruit that must be refrigerated        temperature, divided                              additions each, beating just until blended
immediately after purchase to maintain           1/4 cup (packed) dark brown sugar                 and occasionally scraping down sides of
freshness. Left in the sun, they will become     2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar                      bowl. Using clean dry beaters, beat egg
limp.                                            3 cups whole pitted fresh Bing cherries or        whites in another medium bowl until foamy.
                                                 other dark sweet cherries (about 21 ounces        Add cream of tartar and beat until whites
With no major frost hit to the crop (like last                                                     are stiff but not dry. Using rubber spatula,
                                                 whole unpitted cherries)
year), it appears that this year will be a                                                         fold 1/4 of whites into batter to lighten
                                                 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
bumper crop. Those of you that forewent                                                            slightly. Fold in remaining whites in 3
                                                 1/4 cup yellow cornmeal (preferably stone-
cherries at $6 a pound in 2008 can expect                                                          additions (batter will be thick). Spoon batter
                                                 ground medium grind)
lots of delicious, low priced cherries at your                                                     over cherries in skillet, then spread evenly
                                                 2 teaspoons baking powder
farmers markets or grocery stores.                                                                 with offset spatula to cover cherries.
                                                 1/4 teaspoon salt
The Bing cherry is the most famous and           1 cup sugar                                       Bake cake until top is golden brown and
popular dark red variety, but there are others   2 large eggs, separated                           tester inserted into center comes out clean,
such as Sweetheart, Chelan, Tieton, Skeena,      3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract                      about 45 minutes. Cool in skillet on rack 5
and Lapins. The famous tasty yellow-red          1/2 cup whole milk                                minutes. Run spatula around edges of cake
cherry is the Ranier variety.                    1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar                      to loosen. Place large serving platter upside
                                                 Position rack in center of oven; preheat to       down atop skillet. Using pot holders or oven
Most people eat sweet cherries fresh, while      350°F. Combine 1/4 cup butter with brown          mitts, firmly hold platter and skillet together
craving cherry desserts made with tart or        sugar and vinegar in 10- to 11-inch               and invert. Leave skillet atop cake 5
sour cherries, the majority of which are         ovenproof skillet with 2-inch-high sides. Stir    minutes. Remove skillet. If necessary,
grown in Michigan. But the added advantage       over medium heat until butter melts and           rearrange any cherries that may have
of making a dessert with sweet cherries          sugar dissolves, about 2 minutes. Increase        become dislodged. Let cake cool at least 45
(other than that they are locally grown), is     heat to high; add cherries and bring to boil.     minutes. Cut cake into wedges and serve
that you add less sugar. Here is a delicious     Remove from heat.                                 slightly warm or at room temperature.
recipe from Bon Appetit, June 2008
Restaurant Nutrition Labeling
By Elizabeth Payne and Meghan Lyle

Y          ou may have noticed new numbers
           on the menus at some restaurants.
           King County restaurants with
fifteen or more nationwide locations are now
required to post calorie information, as well
as saturated fat, sodium and carbohydrate
amounts for most of their menu items. King
County is one of the first in the nation to pass
legislation requiring nutrition information to
be posted for customers to see. New York
City, California and Multnomah County in
Oregon also adopted nutrition labeling
policies, and twenty other jurisdictions
currently have proposals for labeling in the

Referred to as “restaurant nutrition labeling”,
the King County policy went into effect in
January. The policy is intended to make
choosing healthy items easier by providing
nutrient information at the point of purchase.
A 2008 poll of 500 King County residents
found a majority (60%) were in support of
                                                   In effect since January 2009, the legislation requiring restaurants to label their menus is meant
restaurant nutrition labeling.2 In addition,
                                                   to help consumers make informed decisions during their many meals eaten away from home.
most people who were polled had a hard time
estimating calorie information when quizzed
on items served at area restaurants. With
                                                   To help consumers use the menu labeling            saturated fat or 633 mg of sodium. 271 grams
many of us eating up to 33% of calories away
                                                   information, the policy requires that              of carbohydrates are recommended for
from home, making healthy choices in
                                                   restaurants post the following: “The Dietary       someone eating 2000 calories daily, so you
restaurants is more important than ever.2 But
                                                   Guidelines for Americans recommend                 can estimate that you need no more than 75
how can you make use of all of this new
                                                   limiting saturated fat to 20 grams and sodium      grams of carbohydrates at any one meal.
                                                   to 2300 mg for a typical adult eating 2000         Information about carbohydrates is especially
                                                   calories daily. Recommended limits may be          important for people with diabetes who often
                                                   higher or lower depending upon daily calorie       need to track the amount of carbohydrates
                                                   consumption”. One way you can use this             they eat.
                                                   information is to figure out how many
                                                   calories you need at each meal and use that        The new policy will provide the nutrient
                                                   information to guide your meal choices. For        information that consumers want and will
                                                   example, if you are a typical adult eating         take the guesswork out of making healthy
                                                   2000 calories daily, you can estimate 500-550      choices. More information about estimating
                                                   calories at 3 meals with about 350                 your nutrition needs and about restaurant
                                                   discretionary calories allotted for snacks or      nutrition labeling can be found on the Public
                                                   drinks throughout the day. That means that         Health Seattle King County website, http://
                                                   any menu item over 500-550 calories      
                                                   contains more calories than you need for any       nutrition/healthyeating/menu.aspx
                                                   one meal and you can make another choice.
                                                   Similarly, you can use the information about
                                                   saturated fat, sodium and carbohydrates to         Reference:
                                                   make informed choices. If you are eating
                                                   2000 calories daily, saturated fat intake          1
                                                   should be limited to 20 grams and sodium to         2

Most people have a hard time estimating            2300 mg, so you can estimate that any one          health/nutrition/healthyeating/menu/
calories of foods offered at area restaurants.     meal should not have more that 5-6 grams of        campaign.aspx
Is a Soda Tax the Answer to the Obesity Epidemic?
By Kate Murphy

                                                                                                   Predictably, soft drink manufacturers and
                                                                                                   beverage lobbying groups oppose a soda tax,
                                                                                                   arguing it unfairly targets lower income
                                                                                                   consumers, does not teach self-monitoring of
                                                                                                   caloric intake, and will impact jobs. The
                                                                                                   industry also points to efforts it is making to
                                                                                                   offer lower calorie and smaller portioned
                                                                                                   beverages in schools. Bill Clinton’s Alliance
                                                                                                   for a Healthier Generation has worked with
                                                                                                   soft drink manufacturers on these options and
                                                                                                   also opposes a soda tax. He stated to the NY
                                                                                                   Times that he would rather see a focus on
                                                                                                   containing health care costs and increasing
                                                                                                   prevention and wellness through incentives.

                                                                                                   Research by UW’s own Adam Drewnowski
                                                                                                   has pointed out the possible futility of a soda
                                                                                                   tax without altering the costs of healthier
                                                                                                   food options. An imposition of a soda tax
                                                                                                   does not mean it will be economically
                                                                                                   feasible for consumers to purchase healthier
                                                                                                   beverage options like milk or juice because of
                                                                                                   the extreme price differential. Soft drinks
                                                                                                   cost on average $1 per 1000 calories while
                                                                                                   100% vegetable juice costs $10 per 1000
                                                                                                   calories. A soda tax also does not ensure
A 1-cent per ounce tax can reduce consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages by more than            people will choose the healthy option instead.
10% and generate $16 billion per year, money that can be used to support a new health              A soda tax is likely to also bring up much
insurance system.                                                                                  opposition from consumers themselves, who
                                                                                                   vehemently opposed a proposed 18-cent tax
                                                                                                   earlier this year in NY state and repealed a
       n Congress’ latest effort to reduce       Frieden, newly appointed head of the CDC          soda tax in Maine last November. It looks to

I      health care costs and generate revenue
       for a new health insurance system, a
       new soda tax is being considered that
       could also reduce obesity. A 1-cent per
ounce tax is estimated to reduce consumption
                                                 and the former NYC Health Commissioner
                                                 under whose tenure menu labeling and the
                                                 trans fat ban were enacted. Both cite
                                                 evidence connecting increased consumption
                                                 of sugar-sweetened beverages to increased
                                                                                                   be an uphill battle, but with over 60% of the
                                                                                                   US adult population overweight or obese and
                                                                                                   U.S. children following in their footsteps, any
                                                                                                   increase in awareness of this epidemic will be
of sugar-sweetened beverages by more than        obesity and displacement of more healthful
10% and generate $16 billion per year.           beverages as well as to the success tobacco
Proponents of a soda tax include the Center      taxes have had in improving health.
for Science in the Public Interest and Thomas

                                                 Food Group Spring Quarter Highlights
                                                 By Anna Carroll
                                                 Food Group held a number of fun activities during Spring Quarter, including volunteer trips to
                                                 Northwest Harvest, a charity bowl-a-thon, a health fair in Rainier Beach, and a meet & greet
                                                 with the Bastyr University nutrition students. We were also very excited to sponsor a screening
                                                 of the award-winning movie, “Good Food: Sustainable food and farming in the Pacific
                                                 Northwest”. The film, which was recently featured at the Seattle International Film Festival and
                                                 the United Nations Association Film Festival, follows the stories of farmers, farmers’ markets,
                                                 distributors, stores, restaurants and public officials who are developing a more sustainable food
The screening of “Good Food” was followed        system in the Pacific Northwest. Following the screening Food Group hosted a lively and
by a lively and insightful panel discussion      insightful panel discussion with representatives from Marra Farm, Full Circle Farm and Public
with, from left to right, Maggie Hoback from     Health - Seattle King County. The event was promoted across campus and attracted students and
Full Circle Farms, Erin MacDougall from          faculty from a variety of disciplines. The evening concluded with a reception for Food Group
Seattle King County Public Health, and Sue       members and the newly admitted nutrition students. The reception was a great way to meet the
McGann from Full Circle Farms.                   new students and to celebrate Food Group’s successes over the soon to be completed 2008-2009
                                                 school year.
 Alumni Spotlight: Janice Kao, MPH
 By Mari Obara

In what year did you graduate from                 coursework with a lot of studying and even
the Nutritional Sciences program?                  more project-completing, I also remember
                                                   the classes very fondly. I liked community
August 2006.                                       nutrition for the hands-on, practical public
                                                   health experience that it gave us (I continue
What degrees/certifications do you
                                                   to use interviewing/focus group-conducting
currently hold?
                                                   skills today!), but I also remember food
BA in Psychology, MPH in Public Health             science lab being really fun and practical as
Nutrition. I'm a dietetic internship and RD        well. I even liked the intensity of the 520
exam away from an RD, though I have taken          series (Nutrition and Metabolism) and really
all the DPD courses.                               having to understand how nutrients work at
                                                   such a detailed level.
Who is your employer, and what do
you do?                                            Any advice for current NS students?

I work for the Center for Weight and Health        As someone who completed the MPH in the
at UC Berkeley, as a researcher. I'm currently     nutrition program, I know that sometimes it
working on 4 different evaluation studies -- 2     feels like we have to do a LOT of extra work,
are evaluations of community-based                 especially compared to similar programs at
initiatives, and 2 are school nutrition policy     other universities. Once I graduated and
evaluations. As a project manager, I do things     started working, however, I became instantly

                                                                                       Food For Thought
like coordinate school site visits, develop data   grateful for my many and varied curricular
                                                   and extra-curricular experiences at UW.             Janice Kao, MPH now works as a project
collection instruments, manage the collection,
                                                   Every one of those field work experiences,          manager Newsletter by Food and Health
                                                                                                  A Quarterly at the Center for Weight Group @ UW
cleaning, and analysis of data, and help with                                                          at University of California, Berkeley.
reporting/presenting results and findings. I've    power point presentations, every aspect of
                                                   my master's thesis has all translated into     FOOD GROUP at University of Washington
also been able to contribute to publications,
                                                   something useful, even if it's just having     promotes and raises awareness of nutrition on
and last fall I presented at the annual APHA
                                                   more subject knowledge about a public health
                                                                                                        advice is to greater Seattle of the
                                                                                                  campus and in thetake advantage area. We aim to
conference. This fall I will be at FNCE in                                                              opportunities that you have while you're in
                                                   agency or program. In fact, I wish I had done  increase access to nutrition information for students,
Denver, so if you're going, come find me!                                                               the nutrition program, even though they may
                                                   more! If I were still a student at UW, I would conduct educational outreach and fundraise with
What was your favorite class in the                                                                     not feel like "opportunities" right now. I
                                                                                                  promotional messages.
                                                   take more biostats classes and a program
                                                                                                        really feel like UW gave me excellent
NS program, and why?                               evaluation course too. I also wish I had tried
                                                                                                        preparation for my job and
                                                                                                  Joining the Food Group is FREE! am still so
                                                   to publish my thesis while I still had an
This is a tough one! While I remember my                                                                grateful.
                                                   advisor to guide me! So, I guess my overall For membership information, please contact
time at UW as filled with rigorous

                                                        Food Group Events

                                                              Friday, June 26:
                                                            Northwest Harvest
                                                     Join us for our monthly volunteer
                                                    event at the food bank, and mingle
                                                       with us afterwards during our
                                                        post-volunteer happy hour!

                                                    Keep an eye out for future FG
                                                    event announcements in your
                                                    inbox! Participating in FG events                     FOOD GROUP at University of Washington
                                                    is fun and rewarding - this quarter,           
                                                                                                          promotes and raises awareness of nutrition on campus
                                                    FG members won the Most
                                                    Spirited Award for dressing as                        and in the greater Seattle area. We aim to increase
                                                    retro athletes at Solid Ground’s                                                   Alumni Spotlight:
                                                                                                          access to nutrition information for students, conduct
                                                    Strike Out Hunger Bowl-a-thon
                                                    fundraiser. From left to right:
                                                                                                                                   Katie Thomson, M
                                                                                                          educational outreach and fundraise with promotional
                                                    Joyce Chen, Mari Obara, Kate                          messages.
                                                                                                                                      Who is your employer, and   &W
                                                    Murphy, Bryce Mercer, Amy                             Joining the Food Group is FREE!                         nic
                                                    Hendrickson, and Ophelia Woo.                                                     what do you do?
                                                                                                          For membership information, please contact              sev
                                                                                                                               In December 2004, I was hired mo
                                                                                                                               as a contract worker at Star-      swi
                                                                                                                               bucks Coffee Company respon- wh
                                                                                                                               sible for nutritional analysis and mil
                                                                                                                               accuracy of all nutrition data     tion

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