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Reviewed by Kathleen Zelman on February 14, 2012


Elaine Magee, RD, MPH

© 2006 WebMD, Inc. All rights reserved.

WebMD Archive

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You can tell a lot about somebody just simply by opening their refrigerator. So let's look in and see about this person's refrigerator.

Right away I'm looking at the soy milk and I really encourage people to add soymilk. It's just a great way to get some plant proteins as well into your diet. Here we have some orange juice.

For those that don't drink milk as a beverage, this is a missed opportunity because there isn't the calcium fortification and the vitamin D that you could get in these carton orange juices now.

We've seen lots of fun flavors in these non-dairy Coffee-mate kind of creamers. This one says sugar-free, but I'm going to check this out for a second.

That's interesting because the second ingredient is corn syrup.

There is one gram of fat and it looks like it's trans because I'm looking on the fat ingredient label and of that gram of fat it's not saturated, it's not poly, it's not mono,

which leaves one thing only and that's trans.

Then there's milk. This is a reduced fat milk, 2%, certainly a step in the right direction, but you can also try the 1% and the skim.

One thing people don't realize about milk, as they take the fat out in milk it increases the calcium and the protein. Now I'm looking at sour cream.

I just use the non-fat pretty much in everything; I use it as a fat replacement. If you find a brand you like the flavor of, stick with it. You really don't need to do the real stuff.

I love to see this…light cream cheese. If you're lightening up a cookie recipe or a pound cake recipe or something like that where you want the texture to be nice and rich,

this is your ideal fat replacement. Use half the amount of margarine or butter called for and half light cream cheese.

Now I know people think dieticians are "phooey" on butter, but this particular dietician, uh…appreciates that there are certain recipes and situations where there is no substitute for butter.

My advice to you is, use butter in those recipes where it's pivotal but use a lot less.

Now here's some yogurt and I really encourage people to eat more low fat yogurts.

It's a way of getting more dairy, more calcium, more dairy proteins, which has some benefit in terms of weight loss, especially around the abdominal area.

And here we've got some mayonnaise. Real mayonnaise has about 90 calories and 10 grams of fat per tablespoon, or you can try some of the light mayos and see if you like that better;

and even in those recipes that call for mayonnaise, I use part light mayo, part fat-free sour cream, just to cut the fat by 75%.

And looking at the crispers, they've got some romaine, they've got lots of dark green veggies lots of lettuce. I see some fruit. We've got regular cheese.

Now here's your choice on cheese, you can try some of the light and reduced fat cheeses. There's some great tasting ones out there. I like the sharp cheddar;

it's got a little bit more flavor or you can buy the real thing and just use half of it in your recipes.

We have some great choices in eggs now with these higher omega-3 eggs;

and they've literally fed the chicken's differently so you've got an egg that has less fat—4 grams per yolk, less saturated fat— 1 gram, and 25% of the daily value for vitamin E.

Which is awesome, we need more vitamin E.

All in all, I'd have to say this is a pretty healthy refrigerator. For WebMD, I'm Elaine Magee.

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