Return to Healthy Diet and Nutrition with Angela Ysseldyk and Dr. Jordan Robertson

Didn’t quite make it LIVE? See what Direct of Education Angela Ysseldyk and Naturopathic Doctor Dr. Jordan Robertson had to say about emerging from our COVID cocoons and learning to eat better again.

Over the past 18+ months we have been through a lot. Our worlds were turned upside down in more ways than one.  Lockdowns and restrictions forced us to shift our entire life in ways that affected our day-to-day activities - including our routines. 

While we may have been blessed with more time at home, some new habits may have been formed that we want to take a look at.  For example, what do we want to start doing, stop doing or keep doing.  I know for myself, I loved the time to make homemade meals and less rushing around to enjoy dinner with my family.   However, other habits and coping mechanisms crept in, like not being as accountable to my workouts due to closures, or enjoying maybe a little more comfort foods (and drinks) that helped us deal with the stress of the uncertainty.  Not to mention our children and kids and all the screen time, and less social exposure.  All of which affect wellness.  So lets talk about it!  What did we learn?  

Are there habits that kept you healthy like movement, mindfulness and even your diet and nutrition, that you want to keep, stop or start as some key learnings from this pandemic?  

While change will be constant and old ways may be a thing of the past - as we transition to this next season and new normal, we wanted to have a conversation about what we learned and how we can shift our habits to continue, bring back or change our routines for the better.   Get back to healthy, or start a healthy habit - motivate you with some easy tips and make being healthy simple and accessible.   

Today we are joined by Dr. Jordan Robertson Naturopathic Doctor and Women’s health expert.  Dr. Robertson is known for her relentless search for the best quality evidence in integrative medicine and to stand up for those willing to pursue their health goals. Her passion is to educate and empower women to understand both herself and her family’s health and how to care for themselves.   Today we will focus on the return to diet and nutrition.  

AY: So Jordan, let’s hear it from you: what struggles/obstacles have you noticed with either yourself or your patients over the last 18 months - specifically related to nutrition/diet for the family? 

JR

  • Structure was missing at the beginning. Many routines are built on top of each other, so if people weren’t going to work, they stopped walking at lunch, even though these two habits could live independently.
  • Lack of structure creates random mealtimes, which generally leads to overeating.
  • Alcohol intake increased through the week.
  • Stress and sleep worsened - which increases food intake and cravings.

AY: What has worked and what has not worked?  For example, while home based cooking and meals was a trend, due to more time at home (and inside the house), what pitfalls do people get into when it comes to getting their micronutrients and macronutrients.  What nutrients are the hardest for people to get and why 

JR:

  • Iron rich foods, like spinach and legumes
  • Calcium, like yogurt and dark leafy greens
  • People avoid certain foods without realizing they are avoiding micronutrients or macronutrients.
  • Omega-3 oils.
  • Vitamin D, due to cover up, time indoors, lack of sunshine etc.
  • Protein requirements based on weight and how to improve protein at each meal to help with satiety and feelings of fullness.
  • In fact, high prevalence of Inadequate Intakes were seen for:
    • vitamin A (>47%)
    • vitamin D (>94%)
    • vitamin C (>29% for nonsmokers and >59% for smokers)
    • magnesium (>45%)
    • calcium (>44%)

AY: Lets look ahead.   What are some things we want to keep based on what we have learned and what fail safe strategies can we put in place to ensure we don’t fall short?  With much concern for our children (too much screen time, not enough activity, mental health and nutrition being a number one concern of parents, how do you coach adults and parents ways to bridge the gaps.  Please speak for adults and also for kids. What can parents do to make sure kids are getting important Minerals and Vitamins?

JR:

  • Look to have good nutrition over a meal, day and week. If one meal isn’t great, make the day balance or the week balance.
  • It’s never one food choice that makes or breaks nutrition. It’s the repetition of habits. 7 cupcakes in a row. Banana bread example from the beginning of the pandemic.
  • Cut up veggies and fruits and make them accessible for adults and kids.
  • Have foods at home. You can’t eat the good food if it’s not there.
  • If kids are picky you may need to consider fortified food options or supplements.

AY: “Shouldn’t I get all my Vitamins and Minerals from my diet?” is a question many of us have, as a naturopathic doctor, what are your thoughts on that?

JR:

  • Sometimes people’s symptoms, stage of life or diet create a need that exceeds what they can achieve through food alone.
  • Between the nutrient content of modern-day food, industrialized farming, and lifestyle factors like stress, alcohol, medications, digestion issues contribute to nutrient depletion - and the need of Multi’s

AY - with all this in mind, what are 3-5 tips for a balanced, nutritious diet that are easy to put into our routine, considering the new normal, and maybe less time at home than before?

JR:

  • The frequency of foods is what makes the difference in nutrition. 1 cupcake doesn’t matter - cupcakes every day does.
    • A good tip is to look at some of the frequency of healthy and unhealthy foods in your diet to see if this has changed in the last year.
  • Regular mealtimes help support a better body weight and metabolism
    • Tip to create breaks when working from home, ‘pack your lunch’ even if you’re working from home and try and replicate the benefits you had from going to the office.
  • Take note of how full or hungry you are after meals
    • Tip of increasing protein at each meal and fibre to improve satiety.

With all this in mind, a couple of specific products come to mind that should be in your family’s arsenal to bridge the gap for where your diet may fall short and help you top up to get the most out of your diet and nutrition plans.  Lets face it, we may not always have the time to be making 5 course meals, get full body sun exposure, or be able to eat perfectly all the time, so I am aligned with the strategies suggested to get a solid multi vitamin and vitamin D for your everyday needs.  

Jamieson offers multiple formats for your needs, but the one that I tend to go to is the Jamieson Essentials Multi 100% Complete and the Jamieson Essentials Vitamin D3. And we have kids’ versions of each of these available in delicious formats too so the whole family can have access to better health habits.

Jamieson is here for your health offering several multivitamin/and vitamin D options for all ages, all bodies, and all lives around the world.

The 100% Complete Multivitamin for Adults is the easy way to get 100% of your body's daily vitamin needs. It is formulated with top notch quality and according to Health Canada's recommendations so you can feel confident you are getting 100% or more of the vitamins your body needs each day!

We love this one because it is great for men and women. With the combination of vitamins, and minerals plus additional antioxidants such as lutein, you are getting the insurance you need.    Other specific ingredients also provide naturally energizing immune defense, setting your foundation up for even more success.  At one per day dosing with food, it’s easy to make it part of your routine.   Post some green hearts if you use a multi and double green hearts if you use this one! 

As healthcare practitioners, we also recommend taking some extra vitamin D as part of your essential foundational nutrition program.   Since vitamin D is an essential nutrient we know that it plays very important roles in many areas of our health like bone health, immune health and prevention of osteoporosis.  

Jamieson offers Vitamin D in multiple dosages and formats for the everyday needs of your whole family. Whether you require drops for your infant, chewables for your children, and gummies for yourself, and even a higher dose if suggested by your medical practitioner, Jamieson has them all, we’re here for your health.  Post some green hearts if you are committed to getting your daily vitamin D in.

These are all formulated with top notch quality ingredients so you can feel confident you are getting 100% or more of the nutrients your body needs each day!  Remember you’ve only got one body, so treat it well so you can live well.  Now that’s a good habit you can start today!

  1. Ahmed, M., (Praneet) Ng, A., & L'Abbe, M. R. (2021). Nutrient intakes of Canadian adults: results from the Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS)–2015 Public Use Microdata File. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/nqab143
  2. Sourcing: D. J. Favell. A comparison of the vitamin C content of fresh and frozen vegetables. Unilever Research, Colworth Laboratory, Sharnbrook, Bedford, UK, accessed at: http://ucce.ucdavis.edu/files/datastore/608-97.pdf
  3. Soil quality: Thomas D. A study on the mineral depletion of the foods available to us as a nation over the period 1940 to 1991. Nutr Health 2003; 17(2): 85-115
  4. Davis, D. R. (2009). Declining Fruit and Vegetable Nutrient Composition: What Is the Evidence? HortScience, 44(1), 15–19. https://doi.org/10.21273/hortsci.44.1.15
  5. https://journals.ashs.org/hortsci/view/journals/hortsci/44/1/article-p15.xml
  6. Digestion: Goodman B. E. (2010). Insights into digestion and absorption of major nutrients in humans. Advances in physiology education, 34(2), 44–53. https://doi.org/10.1152/advan.00094.2009

 Watch this episode of The Wellness Table here!