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Staying in the Game

September 10th, 2011 - By Lari Robling

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Katie Cavuto Boyle says at first a diagnosis of diabetes is a “kick in the pants” to make healthier lifestyle changes. After a while, though, the routine can become boring. She’s also the team dietician for the Philadelphia Phillies so she’ll give you some tips to stay motivated and on top of your game.


When you are first diagnosed with diabetes, there are many changes in your life — medical treatments and a new attention to diet and exercise. But what happens down the road when the daily routine is just that… daily. Registered Dietician Katie Cavuto Boyle says maintaining that early motivation is really a struggling for some people but there are ways to keep mealtime interesting.

Katie Cavuto Boyle

Katie Cavuto Boyle: “You know maybe when you are newly diagnosed and you are thinking whole grains you change from white rice to brown rice. Then maybe a couple months down the road you are really ready to start exploring. Maybe learning how to cook quinoa, or learning how to cook millet, or wheatberries, and really kind of exploring the realm of these wonderful ingredients that are so healthy for us.”

Lari Robling:“So, Katie you mentioned quinoa?”

Katie Cavuto Boyle: “Quinoa is a whole grain. It’s a rich source of protein and fiber it has a really nutty flavor profile, which pairs well across all of the different meals. I make a big pot of quinoa in the beginning of the week, and then I utilize it in many different recipes. I love to wake up in the morning and make some milk with my quinoa in a saucepan. Maybe a little bit of dried fruit, and some cinnamon, then a sprinkle of nuts when it is finished, and have this beautiful breakfast cereal. Then I’ll take leftover chicken from dinner, and toss it into some cooked quinoa, with maybe corn and black beans and cumin and make a nice southwest quinoa salad. Then at dinner maybe caramelize some onions, and add some fresh herbs, and make a nice savory preparation that is the side to any dish. It all starts with a pot of quinoa that we cooked in the beginning of the week, so you don’t even have to worry about cooking it, when you go to prepare it for each meal.

Lari Robling: “That’s a great idea, really good! I find it a little bitter, am I cooking it wrong?”

Katie Cavuto Boyle: “So one of the things with quinoa is that it actually has a coating on the outside of it. It’s a natural protection to keep birds and insects away. So, with any quinoa, you want to give it a good rinse first to get that natural coating off the outside, that’s where that bitter flavor comes from. Once you rinse that coating off, you won’t have that bitter flavor anymore. You’ll just have this nice texture, and nice nuttiness that really pairs well with many dishes.”

Lari Robling: “I think millet is a wonderful grain that is under-utilized.”

Katie Cavuto Boyle: “It is under-utilized. It’s actually over-utilized in birdseed. Which is where everyone has seen millet, but it’s not very utilized on the dinner table. So, something that I love to do with millet is I love making millet pilafs. So, when I make a millet pilaf I’ll keep it on the fluffier side. I’ll use a little less water, so the grain still has some texture. Then, I use it as a ‘clean out the refrigerator’ dish. I take all of the veggies and aromatics that I have laying around the house and sauté them up in my sauté pan. Then add in the millet and allow it some time to kind of hangout so all of those beautiful flavors in part.”

Ryan Howard

Lari Robling: “Okay, one final question. You are a registered dietician, and you are the Phillies dietician, the team dietician. What kind of predictions do you have for this season?”

Katie Cavuto Boyle: “Well, I hoping that they do really great! You know being the Phillies dietician is so wonderful because they are so invested in the foods that they eat. They see the link between healthy eating and their performance and overall wellness.”

Lari Robling: “Was there a dish that you surprised the team with, that they just said, ‘Wow! This is really great and it’s healthy!'”

Katie Cavuto Boyle: “They are guys and they love their ‘dude food,’ which I like to call it. So it’s about making those healthy upgrades. We do a lot with bison, because they are big meat and potatoes guys. Bison is actually lower in saturated fat, cholesterol, and total fat. Because it is predominately grass fed, it tends to be higher in omega-3 fatty acids, which are really heart healthy and actually anti-inflammatory. Making bison chili and bison ragouts and different bison stir-frys, is a really great way to kind of make a healthy upgrade, and incorporate something that is going to be better for them. But really not changing the flavor profiles or changing their perception of what that food should be like.”

Winning words for the Phillies and for us from Registered Dietician Katie Cavuto Boyle.

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