Friday Shout Outs #10



TGIF! Shout Outs
Friday, August 21st, 2015

What’s shakin’ bacon? Sassy here with another edition of Friday Shout Outs…or should I say Fri-YAY! Here’s to another Friday, hope your weekend is wonderful just like you!

I just got back from vacation with my family on Bald Head Island (the most wonderful place in the world) and at the same time we are moving into our new house all the while getting a new phone. So, needless to say I am a bit ALL over the place right now just trying to make sure I know where I am sleeping and eating each day. Don’t get me wrong this is all very exciting but between trying to find people’s numbers and wondering where my pots and pans are it can be quite confusing and disorienting. We will be all moved in soon and I cannot wait to plant my roots in this town 🙂


My family on the beach…we clean up well! Photo credit to Anne Liles

Vacation you ask? It was wonderful. I soaked up all the sun I could while stealing hugs and laughs with my 4 year old nephew, 2 year old niece and
brand new 1 month old nephew…oh yea and my hubby, mom, dad, brother (older) and sister-in-law….and a surprise visit from my brother-in-law oh and our 15 year old Wheaten Terrier Amber. Family time is the best time and living so far away from everyone makes me cherish every second we had. We played in the sand, boogie boarded, climbed a lighthouse, shared some homemade ice cream and chilled by a bonfire on the beach. It’s important to take breaks in life, take some deep breaths and unwind. It’s so easy to power through but this was a much needed vacation and I’m ready to go back already. Alright, besides my family, here are a few of my favorite things for this week’s Friday Shout Outs!


A few of my favorite things…




…besides these two handsome guys of course 🙂
Continue reading “Friday Shout Outs #10”

8 Frankenfoods That Make Dietitians Cry

8 Frankenfoods That Make Dietitians Cry
Since y’all seemed to love 7 Foods A Dietitian Wants You To Eat so much we decided to do a joint post of the 8 Frankenfoods That Make A Dietitian Cry. If you are currently eating any of the below, know that you are an adult and can continue to eat them, we do not judge you for it but we want you to have the education to know better and to eat healthier.

Pearl’s comments are in green and Sassy’s are in pink.

Artificial Colors

I’m a pretty adventurous eater but nowhere in my foodventures is there room for tasting the rainbow unless that rainbow is in vegetable form. You are an adult. You don’t need bright shiny colors to make you eat something, get it together. Artificial colors have been linked to cancer, birth defects, allergic reactions, and ADHD. And for what?! This is an absolutely useless food additive, it literally contributes nothing of value. The only thing they are adding is disease. Check out this resource for more information on why you should stay away from artificial colors.

Preach on sister. Seriously some of those bright colors you see are just down right scary. Did you know that most countries outside of the United States do not even allow food colors/dyes in their foods, then why on earth do we? Crazy town. No real food has to change it’s color to hide the beauty that is within. Wow, that was more profound than I even intended but it’s the truth. Stick to the foods that show what nature gave them, real color from their nutrients not from some factory made dye!

 Artificial (and “Natural”) Flavors

Ever heard the quote “You are what you eat so don’t be fast, cheap, easy or fake?” well I love that quote and I think that artificial flavors are all the above. Seriously what do artificial flavors even mean and why would we want to consume them when there are REAL flavors that are so incredibly tasty. And do not even get me started on “natural flavors” they might as well be artificial as well. I understand that many companies want their products to be uniform in flavor but isn’t that the beauty of some foods, that they differ in flavor depending on where it was grown, what time of year it is and how ripe it is or isn’t?! Besides most of these natural or artificial flavors are in processed foods anyway, so steer clear!

Straight from the FDA’s website– “From a food science perspective it is difficult to define a food product that is ‘natural’ because the food has probably been processed and is no longer the product of the earth. That said, the FDA has not developed a definition for the use of the term natural or its derivatives.” So basically anyone can put natural on a label and it means nothing. Awesome. And natural and artificial flavors could be just about anything on this list. I wish we could give you a better explanation of what these things actually are but the FDA doesn’t even seem to know. If you ask me it’s pretty terrifying food companies aren’t required to list exactly which additives they’re encouraging people to eat.

Vegetable Oils

If you are an avid Nutrition Genius Radio fan you already know our opinion on this matter. However, I never miss a chance to rant and rave about how much I LOATHE vegetable oils. I mean let’s think about this, do any of your vegetables look oily to you? I sure hope not! So where then are these “vegetable” oils coming from, not vegetables that we recommend that’s for sure. Canola oil (my least favorite) comes from a rapeseed, yes that’s its actual name and it’s not a food you will ever find on my table. These so called “healthy” oils are touted for their heart healthiness but they are anything but. The oils are rancid by the time they get to you and lead to many ill effects including inflammation in the body, ugh. Stick with real healthy fats like those from Olive Oil, avocados, coconuts, animals. eggs and fish. 

All that needs to happen to get butter on your table is time, separation, and some churning. This is how you get vegetable oil. Case closed. 


Did you say soda or Type II Diabetes in a can? I can’t tell the difference. Liquid sugar, in the form of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), is not only doing a number to your blood sugar regulation it’s also messing with your liver. Once HFCS wreaks its havoc on your liver you will also start to see an increase in your triglycerides, LDL, visceral fat stores, and production of free radicals. Check out this hella old episode of Nutrition Genius Radio for more info on why sugar is not your friend. Don’t worry, we’re still weird and Darth Vader voices come out in the first two minutes. Think you’re ahead of the curve because you’re drinking diet soda? Think again, you’re ruining your gut bugs and a change in your microbiome has been shown to play a role in conditions like obesity, diabetes, cancer, allergies, autism, asthma, inflammatory bowel disease, and autoimmune conditions. #waterforthewin

Put down that can or bottle and back away as fast as you can. We know soda is bad for us but for whatever reason we cannot give it up, why?! We are addicted to that fizz and that sugar (artificial included) and I want it all to end! Soda, like Pearl said is nothing but liquid sugar and chemicals, ew! Instead why don’t you drink some water (seltzer water is ok too), herbal tea or some Kombucha, your body and gut bugs will thank you, and so will we. Not convinced? Watch “The Real Bears” and quit your habit for good.


A piece of my soul dies every year during the summer when baseball season and backyard barbecues make hot dog consumption increases tenfold. Mr. Hotdog, WHAT ARE YOU? You are pink slime. Your ingredients include mechanically separated chicken, mechanically separated turkey, corn syrup (what? in meat?), and “flavors” (thanks for being so specific), but that isn’t even half of them. Hotdogs are disgusting. I don’t care if you grew up eating them, do not feed yourself leftover meat products, toxic ingredients, and who knows what else.

What she said. Not to mention we are told that these are “kid-friendly” foods yet they are also a choking hazard, uh say what? There are much better options, like say a homemade burger that we can ALL eat and enjoy in the summer without putting all those creepy ingredients in our body. Check out some of these pictures/videos on buzzfeed and you may never want a hot dog again, you’re welcome. 


If it fits my macros then it’s totally cool if I have a Poptart right?! No. Stop. I can’t even. There is nothing healthy or normal about a Poptart, not even the name. High Fructose Corn Syrup is the 3rd ingredient, only after the 1st, enriched flour and 2nd, corn syrup. Also, how is something with sprinkles a good option for breakfast? 1 pastry alone has 38 grams of carbohydrates, WHOA! They normally package them in 2 pastry packs so if you are consuming them, you are getting a whopping 76 grams of carbohydrate in one sitting. They have to then enrich the poptart to make it have some semblance of nutrition, but this factory made cardboard square with confetti on it is NOT food and is NOT nutritious. Back away! I’d much rather you have some eggs or even a delicious treat like this. 

HA! A factory made cardboard square with confetti is right! I like the way Sassy words that because it reminds you that Poptarts just aren’t a food, they’re a food-like product. Think nutrient density when shopping for foods. Focus on spending your money where you will get the most nutrients not the most calories. And parents, you hold the purse strings, put your dang foot down. Refuse to give your children toxic foods. Teach your kids good habits now so they continue them on later in life when you aren’t preparing their meals.


Does anyone really enjoy having their hands turn bright orange for days? Talk about getting caught with your hand in the cookie jar, EVERYONE can tell you’ve had your hand in the Cheetos bag. Let’s take a look at the ingredient list shall we? Enriched Corn Meal, Vegetable Oil, Cheese Seasoning, Canola Oil, Maltodextrin, Salt, Whey Protein Concentrate, MSG, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Lactic Acid, Citric Acid, Artificial Color (Yellow 6) and Salt. YIKES!!! Well we’ve already discussed most of these (in bold) and so it’s safe to say I would never EVER recommend this chemical disaster to anyone, end of story. Your hands will thank you.

So what you’re saying is the ingredients are GMO corn, inflammatory vegetable oils, an ambiguous seasoning, another vegetable oil, sugar, a once tasty and nutritious topping for steak stripped of its nutrients, a chemically separated protein, a protein known to cause neural effects, more ambiguous seasonings, more chemically separated ingredients, and finally a dash of fake color linked to cancer. Tasty. 


This one drives me batty. Most people start their day with a bowl of cereal and skim milk and think they are getting a healthy meal with the fiber they need to lower cholesterol and keep them regular. Most people are also, unknowingly, starting their day with a straight shot of carbohydrate making their blood sugar soar. Even if you are avoiding artificial colors and added sugars in your cereal you are likely still eating something that is a waste of your time and a detriment to your health. You’ve heard our spiel on grains and why you should give them up soooooo why are you still eating and feeding your kids Os? Try this, this or this breakfast recipe instead. Artificial colors, artificial flavors, added sugars, and gluten = all the inflammation and all the reasons to avoid.

Friends, I used to be in this cereal eating boat, so have no fear you can come out alive and well.  Cereal is very user friendly, easy to consume, shelf stable and not filling one bit. Most people tell me they have a healthy breakfast and all I hear is sugar, cardboard, fake stuff and more sugar when I hear cereal. While you may think you are doing yourself a favor, eat some pasture raised bacon and start loving breakfast again. Let’s all be cereal killers and bring on the veggies & eggs for breakfast! 

Alright now tell us…

When is the last time you ate these foods?

What Frankenfoods do you say NO to?

Leave us a comment and let us know!


7 Foods A Dietitian Wants You To Eat

greens1Don’t eat pasta, avoid all the IPAs, stop going out for fast food. WAHHH WAHHH WAHHHH who wants to hear about all the food you can’t have?! Not this gal. It’s always better to focus on what you can and should add to your diet and eventually all the good will crowd out the bad.  Here it is friends, 7 foods a dietitian wants you to eat.

Dark Leafy Greens
Dark leafy greens are some of our most nutrient-dense foods meaning they have a TON of vitamins and minerals for very little calories. They are packed with vitamins A, C, and K, and contain smaller amounts of our B vitamins and vitamin E. They are also a great non-dairy source of calcium and contain appreciable amounts of manganese, choline, iron, copper, and magnesium. Not only are they full of micronutrients they also contain phytonutrients like carotenoids and phenolics. These phytonutrients work as antioxidants in our body fighting off free radicals and the damage they cause which can lead to a whole host of chronic diseases including cancer, cardiovascular disease, autoimmune conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s to name a few. I honestly don’t care what kind you are eating as long as you’re eating them. Some options are mustard, turnip, collard, dandelion and beet greens, kale, swiss chard, bok choy, cabbage, spinach, arugula, and watercress. Broccoli and Brussels sprouts even count Cooking is as easy as sautĂ©ing these guys with butter, salt, and pepper and finish with lemon juice.

Eating liver is basically like eating a whole food version of a multivitamin because one of the liver’s many functions is nutrient storage. A 3 oz serving of beef liver gives you more than your daily needs of vitamin A, vitamin B12, riboflavin, and copper and is also a great source of niacin, thiamin, vitamin B6, folate, pantothenic acid, iron, phosphorus, zinc, manganese, and selenium. It’s far more nutrient dense than the muscle meat we typically eat. Even if you aren’t ready to dive headfirst into liver and onions you can always blenderize liver and add it to meatballs, meatloaf, burgers, or Sassy’s Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf Muffins. (Try the meatloaf muffins, they are contest winning!)

Fatty Fish
Fatty fish including anchovies, salmon, mackerel, whitefish, sardines, tuna, herring, and trout are high in omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids are an essential fatty acid meaning the body is unable to make it and it is therefore essential we obtain it from our food. We need omega-3s for our brain development and function and they are precursors for anti-inflammatory compounds in our body. To learn more about the dreaded inflammation check out Nutrition Genius Radio Episode #30. The average American consumes less than half of the recommended dose of the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. To make sure you’re getting enough of this good stuff bump your fish intake up to twice weekly.

Herbs and Spices
Not only are herbs and spices packed full of nutrients but they make food taste much more flavorful and interesting. Think broccoli tastes bad? You’ve obviously never cooked it in salt, pepper, garlic powder, and butter. Roasted chicken and potatoes seem boring? Add rosemary and dill. Scared and unsure of how to use spices? Try Jesus’ Tears Curried Chicken, it will take you to another world. Similarly to fruits and vegetables, herbs and spices also pack a wicked phytochemical punch and have been found to decrease inflammation, act as an antioxidant, and some even have antibacterial and antifungal properties.

Whole Eggs
I don’t think there is anything that drives a real food dietitian more insane than someone saying they had an egg white omelet for breakfast. THE NUTRIENTS ARE IN THE YOLK. Seriously, look at this yolk to white comparison. Crazy, right?! So eat the whole egg which will give you omega-3 fatty acids and over 20 vitamins and minerals. Eggs are one of the best sources of choline which is required for the structure of cell membranes, functionality of the nervous system, and replication of DNA. We’re egg enthusiasts here at TNG and have all the egg recipes for you- Everything but the… Egg Frittata, Savory Oatmeal with Eggs, Smoked Salmon Egg Frittata, and Bacon Wrapped Egg Muffins.

Tea is also full of phytonutrients and has the added benefit of adding compounds from plants that you don’t typically eat. Research has show green tea has anti-cancer, anti-obesity, anti-atherosclerotic, anti-diabetic, anti-bacterial and anti-viral effects and herbal teas have shown many different benefits depending on the plant components involved. Not only do they have the above health benefits but some teas such as chamomile, lavender, and peppermint may help with sleep which would give you even more of a health improvement.

Fermented Foods
Fermentation is the process of bacteria converting carbohydrate into acid, gases, or alcohol. These foods contain bacteria typically referred to as probiotics which help with digestion, nutrient absorption, and maintenance of the immune system. Research is also looking at our intestinal bacteria for the beneficial role it can play in attenuating inflammation, playing a preventative role in heart disease, inflammatory bowel disease and allergies, and improving mental health issues like anxiety and depression. Not only do the bacteria contribute to our health but they break down components in the food that our bodies can’t and give us additional vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, and enzymes. Some of our favorite fermented foods are kombucha, sauerkraut, and kimchi. Stay tuned for a kombucha recipe soon!

Which of these foods do you need to add to your diet? What super foods are you already eating? Let us know in the comments below!

xo pearl2





#43 Grains


Against The Grain?

We’ve all been brainwashed to think whole-grains are healthy for us and we should work to get as much of them as possible. But, is that really the case? Check out our episode as we discuss the pros and cons of grains, digestion, and what grains really are. Continue reading “#43 Grains”

Meet The Interns (Q&A#24)

Meet The Interns!
PicMonkey Collage

Team Nutrition Genius now has two interns, Karlee and Shannon! Not only are Karlee and Shannon aspiring dietitians but they are also Upstate New Yorkers! #teamworkmakesthedreamwork

Want to get to know them more? Yes? You’re in luck! Our Q&A throws some fun questions their way so we can all get to know them.

Check out our new, short and sweet Q&A podcast on iTunes and Stitcher

If you have questions for us and want answers, don’t hold it in!

If you like what you hear, please leave us a review! Thank you!

Don’t forget to hashtag #AdventuresofSassyandPearl and #NutritionGeniusRadio while you are listening!

Connect with us:

Laura’s Instagram
Marie’s Instagram

NEW!! Team Nutrition Genius on Instagram

#41 Fruit


100% Fruit

Fruit is healthy, or is it? It seems each week we are changing our minds. Check out our episode this week to find out what fruit is, why it is beneficial, and why it gets a bad reputation. Remember at the end of the day to JUST EAT REAL FOOD (or in this case FRUIT). Continue reading “#41 Fruit”

#38 Water Soluble Vitamins


Vitamin water or water-soluble vitamins?!

Ever feel like you are running on empty? Well that might mean you need more energy and guess what vitamins can help with that! Find out this week how you can get your vitamins in REAL FOOD form and start being as energetic as Sassy & Pearl!

In order to make sure you geniuses are ALL caught up, we decided to back track and give you all a quick lesson in vitamins & minerals. Today we are discussing water soluble vitamins while last week we talked fat soluble vitamins. Stay tuned in the next coming weeks to learn all about minerals!

Let us know how you like these episodes and feel free to leave suggestions for future episodes in the comments!

SUBSCRIBE and LEAVE A REVIEW, we’ll love you forever!!! –> iTunes and Stitcher

Don’t forget to hashtag #AdventuresofSassyandPearl and #NutritionGeniusRadio while you are listening!

Thank You Jilly Bean Pins & L.M.1123 for this week’s 5 star reviews!

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Continue reading “#38 Water Soluble Vitamins”

Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf Muffins

Easy & Delicious Meatloaf Recipe….and BACON!

IMG_3703A little Throwback Thursday with these bacon wrapped meatloaf muffins! These meatloaf muffins are easy to make and DELICIOUS to eat. Best part? Bacon…ok but really the best part is that you can cut up ALL the veggies and sneak them in there without having to hold your nose 🙂 Well if you are holding your nose while eating veggies then we may need to chat…because veggies are delicious!

I recommend looking for a great source for your beef as well. Grass-fed (and finished) beef is the best kind because not only is it LOADED with nutritients and anti-inflammatory compounds but it also most likely means that the farmer truly cared enough about the animal to make sure it was living a good, happy and health life 🙂 Check out what Diana Rodger’s ( a past podcast guest) has to say about the sustainability of food and meat!

Check out for farms near you OR go to a local farmers market or farm and start talking to your farmer, if they are proud of their product then they will gladly tell you how they raise their cattle!

Alright, time to get cooking, you can make these without bacon and they are just as tasty and feel free to chop and add any other vegetables that happen to be in your kitchen!

Guess what? This recipe was featured in Albany’s Times Union! Enjoy!

Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf Muffins

Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf Muffins


  • 1 lb. grass-fed ground beef
  • 1 small sweet onion, diced
  • 3 baby bella mushrooms, diced
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsp. oregano
  • 2 tsp. garlic
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
  • 12 strips pastured bacon
  • Coconut oil, to grease muffin tin


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F
  2. Grease muffin tin with coconut oil to prevent sticking
  3. In a medium bowl, mix ground beef, onion, mushroom, egg, tomato paste, oregano, garlic powder, paprika, salt and pepper
  4. Line each muffin cup with 1 slice of bacon
  5. Fill each muffin cup with 1/12 of meat mixture, press down
  6. Bake for 30 minutes or until each muffin reaches and internal temperature of 160°F



Team Nutrition Genius needs an intern!

tng logo attempt5We have been ridiculously busy over here at Team Nutrition Genius. So much so that we are looking for an intern to join our team!

Ideally, we would like our intern to be an undergraduate or masters nutrition student on a RD tract but we are happy to accept applications from other real food enthusiasts. We are looking for someone who is passionate about health & wellness, a real food lifestyle, and who has an entrepreneurial spirit. The ideal intern will be self-motivated, hard working and have knowledge of social media platforms especially Pinterest, YouTube, Facebook & Twitter. Blogging and wordpress background a plus! Opportunities include content and educational material creation, research on current nutrition topics, social media planning, recipe testing, and more. We are asking for a commitment of 5-10 hours per week (will be variable depending on work load).

If you are interested in applying please send an email to with your resume and the following information:

1. Tell us about yourself.

2. What does “real food nutrition” mean to you? (200 words or less)

3. Why do you think you will be a good fit for Team Nutrition Genius?

4. If you could be a fruit what kind of fruit would you be and why?

*Bonus* if you live in Rochester or Albany you can meet with us weekly to learn the ropes.

We are super excited to be able to pass on our nutrition knowledge bombs and can’t wait to have a new team member join us! Let us know if you have any questions or would like any additional information.

#35 No Coffee, No Workie with Kao Jai Coffee


Is #nocoffeenoworkie your motto too? If you have listened to us AT ALL you know how much we love coffee here at Team Nutrition Genius. So we decided to bring Megan Armstrong, founder and owner of Kao Jai Coffee, on to Nutrition Genius Radio to talk answer all the questions we’ve always wanted to know. 

SUBSCRIBE and LEAVE A REVIEW, we’ll love you forever!!! –> iTunes and Stitcher

Don’t forget to hashtag #AdventuresofSassyandPearl and #NutritionGeniusRadio while you are listening!

Continue reading “#35 No Coffee, No Workie with Kao Jai Coffee”