Kathie Herczeg will explain the different diets, trends, and how to maintain or improve overall health with a “Debunking Diet Myths” presentation on Thursday evening.
Herczeg, a family nurse practitioner at the Bitterroot Physicians Clinic South, plans to discuss the details of different diets including American, paleo, Mediterranean, and dash.
“There is a lot of information out there and some of it can be fad-driven and some of those are driven by economics and can be confusing,” Herczeg said. “I don’t think all diets are for all people. Some people get lost in the alphabet soup of it all and what the trends really mean.”
She's focusing on the difference between fads and general nutrition, and which one is the best choice. Herczeg said her favorite general nutrition pick is the Mediterranean diet.
“When you look at the data and research of the general Mediterranean diet, which is full of vegetables and garnishing with meat - the very opposite of the American lifestyle - those people and individuals have a lot lower risk of heart disease, obesity, and diabetes,” Herczeg said. “I think a lot of that is driven by the type of food we eat. The sooner we start looking at food as medicine, not just as pleasure, we might actually gain some ground.”
Many people have started the New Year off with resolutions for positive life-style changes. Herczeg encourages them to stay on course, even if they're derailed by an occasional splurge.
“It’s all about moderation,” she said. “When people are trying to follow a healthy nutrition plan they say ‘Oh, man, I messed up today and had a candy bar,’ so then they just splurge the rest of the week. Well, that’s like having one flat tire and saying ‘Well, I have one flat tire. I might as well slash the rest of them.’”
She recommends getting back on track and making hour-by-hour or meal-by-meal choices.
“Don’t look at one slip-up as the definition of failure for the rest of the year,” Herczeg said.
The free one-hour class on Thursday is not aimed at a particular age group and everyone is welcome.
“Any age will benefit,” she said. “Kids learn from their parents and folks can learn how to guide their children. Young adults can learn - everyone can benefit.”
Herczeg will give a PowerPoint presentation and hand out a chart showing the different version of diets and what each diet should look like.
“There is a lot of information out there and this will help clarify,” she said. “There’s a take-home they can put on their fridge.”
“Debunking Diet Myths” is part of the Marcus Daly Memorial Hospital Health Education Series. Doors open at 5 p.m. with the presentation beginning at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 11, at 1200 Westwood Drive in Hamilton. For more information, visit mdmh.org or call 363-2211.