What’s in a name?

JessieGermanese_cartoon_300Is a Registered Dietitian really promoting sugar-packed sprinkles? I am sure this will cross the minds of many of you who visit my blog. The short answer to this question is no, not exactly, but kind of.

The Nutrition with Sprinkles on Top blog name and logo are illustrations of my food philosophy. I believe food has two functions: it fuels your body and it feeds your soul. To achieve optimal health, there needs to be a balance of both of these. If someone is overly focused on eating nutritious foods all the time without any flexibility, his or her well-being could be negatively impacted, just as consistently eating foods that do not provide any nutrition can result in poor health.

Delicious food is part of life: holidays, weddings, birthdays and more. These types of events are what make life so special, and many of these events include food. Many clients tell me certain foods are “unnecessary” if they do not provide any “nutritional value.” There is some truth to the fact that a cupcake may not provide the same amount of nutrients as say, a spinach salad with lots of colorful veggies, lean protein and an olive-oil based dressing. However, a cupcake, like many other “unnecessary foods” can still add value to your life through the experiences that are associated with eating it.

For example, when I think of cupcakes, I think of my niece’s first birthday party, which was also her first encounter with a cupcake. I am sure most of you have seen one year olds eat cake at their first birthday parties; it’s quite a delightful experience. Her first birthday was a great day. After watching my niece experience her first cupcake (most of it ended up on her face) my family and I ate cupcakes together and celebrated her first year of life.

Why do people add rainbow sprinkles to something? They don’t even really taste like anything…totally unnecessary, right? The interesting thing is, whenever I tell someone the name of my blog, they smile. It doesn’t matter if they are young, old, male or female. There is something about rainbow sprinkles that makes people smile. It may be that they have fond childhood memories of eating ice cream with friends during the summer, or perhaps it reminds them of birthdays and other celebrations. Even though rainbow sprinkles are totally unnecessary when it comes to nutrition, they add value to life.

I am a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist and I have dedicated my life to helping people eat for optimal health. After working with eating disorders for years, I have learned that optimal health cannot be defined by a nutritious, “healthy” diet. Balanced eating patterns and flexibility with food choices leads to a balanced life, which, in my opinion is what truly defines optimal health.

*Each person has individual nutrition needs, but a good general guideline to follow is this:

  • Eat nutritious, wholesome food about 80% of the time
  • Eat “fun food” about 20% of the time

Enjoy my blog and thanks for visiting!

Your cupcake-loving RD,


*A quick note- if you have kidney disease, diabetes, heart disease, celiac disease etc., there are specific diet modifications that have more than likely been recommended to you by your dietitian or another healthcare professional. This “80/20 guideline” is a general guideline that, in my experiences, has been helpful for many clients who want to follow a nutritious eating plan as well as enjoy their favorite foods. While it has helped many of my clients, it may not be appropriate for every single person. Your healthcare professionals know you and your needs best and it is most important to follow the recommendations and guidelines that apply to your individual medical conditions and treatment targets.

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Germanese Nutrition Consulting, LLC

Jessica Germanese, RD, LD
2190 S. Mason Road, Suite 301
St. Louis, MO 63131