Take control of your sweet tooth!

Do you find it difficult to concentrate mid-day with a sugar craving? Are you searching the cupboards in the evening to satisfy that sweet tooth? What appeases it? Chocolate? Baked goods? Desserts?

Your sweet tooth can be managed with awareness, attention, and some coping tools.

The 12 Compliments at Christmas 2016

The Patient Relations Office receives many, many compliments throughout the year.  Below is a seasonal sampling of what we hear about our staff, physicians and volunteers throughout the year and about your impact on patients and families. All of these moments foster a positive impression of the experience we strive to provide every day at Hotel Dieu.

The most magical gift: 3.5 hours of your time

Want to give others—and yourself—a magical gift this holiday season?  How about 3.5 hours of your week towards improving patient care?

JJoan Carstairs in Brock Boutiqueoan Carstairs gave herself that present last year when she started volunteering in the Brock Boutique at Hotel Dieu Hospital.  It’s a commitment that can be summed up in three words—best gift ever—if you’re someone who loves being around happy customers, beautiful merchandise and support

Healthy Hibernation

Make your day a little bit harder

When it comes to being physically active, anything and everything counts! You don’t necessarily need to devote a block of time every day exclusively for physical fitness. Make your day a little bit harder by parking farther away from buildings, taking the stairs, walking to speak to a colleague instead of e-mailing or going for a walk on your lunch break.

Breakfast just got che-easier!

Cottage cheese is a fresh, unripened cheese similar to ricotta with a yogurt-like consistency. It has a unique taste and is incredibly versatile. Its nutritional content also makes it unique. Cottage cheese is drained rather than pressed like most cheeses. This allows the liquid whey to remain, making it higher in protein. It’s naturally lower in salt than other cheeses and it is available in lower milk fat percentages (M.F.%) too! Choose cottage cheese that is 2% M.F. or less and use it as a substitute for sour cream, cream cheese, kefir or yogurt.

No longer wearing that winter coat?

Donate it to the Hotel Dieu Hospital Annual Coat Drive

With blustery days just around the corner, Hotel Dieu Hospital is once again looking for clean, gently used winter coats to help make the upcoming chilly season a bit warmer for many in our community.

Welcome to our surgical team!

We have had an absolute pleasure supporting the Kingston area community for over four years. We have such a unique role in watching our patients change their lives. Every day, we are inspired by stories of health, perseverance and gratitude.

And now, our bariatric family has grown. This past September bariatric surgery started right here in Kingston, supported by a wonderful surgical team at Hotel Dieu Hospital.

Embrace the tastes of Fall

Hello fall. We’ve missed you (and your tasty invitation to use the oven and stove once again). Fall is an absolute splendor for fresh foods and cooking inspiration. A time for harvest and preservation. Warm up today and enjoy the flavours of our favourite fall meals:

Wake up and put the caffeine to the side

You may think it is impossible, but you can survive a life without caffeine.   If you are considering bariatric surgery, this is an absolute must.

Along with alcohol, carbonated beverages and non-prescription and illicit drugs, the Ontario Bariatric Network  advises all patients to avoid caffeine for a minimum 2 months prior and lifelong following bariatric surgery.

So, why the pass by your favorite coffee shop?

What did you really eat?

Do you really know how you are nourishing your body?

Take, for example, this 24-hour food and beverage recall:

Breakfast:  1 whole wheat bagel with cream cheese, a glass of orange juice, coffee with milk

Morning snack:  banana muffin, coffee with milk

Lunch:  tuna sandwich on whole wheat bread, handful of chocolate-covered raisins, handful of grapes

Afternoon:  2x 500ml water

Snack while making supper: carrot sticks, crackers, cheddar cheese

The Sunshine Vitamin (aka VitaminD)

Vitamin D is one of the most common nutrient deficiencies that we see in our patients. You may be familiar with this as the sunshine vitamin. It has roles in maintaining healthy bones, teeth and muscles as well as keeping our immune system healthy. It may even have roles in preventing certain types of cancer. Over time, low vitamin D can contribute to osteomalacia (softening bones) or osteoporosis (weak, porous bones).

Celebrate cooking: Poached egg on pesto toast

Overheard in the bariatric clinic:

‘I don’t have time to cook’ …

‘I’m too tired at the end of the day to make a meal for just myself’ …

‘there are just not enough hours in the day, we need to have something quick so that we can get to hockey practice on time’ …

‘I just don’t like cooking.’

And there are more.

The last of the snacks

So, you’re about to embark on a weight loss journey. As you approach the big ‘day’ … whether that be the date for your bariatric surgery or the date for your weight loss program initiation, have you been mourning the potential ‘loss’ of food by indulging in treats and less than healthy foods? By saying to yourself ‘this could be the last time I have (insert delicious and less healthy food choice here) …I should treat myself while I can.’

You’re not alone.

But, ask yourself: how committed am I to valuing my health above my desires?

Step off of the scale and into your life

What would it be like to wake up and just enjoy your day? No distractions. No lingering chatter in your mind. No math equations. No flattened self-esteem after a trip to the bathroom scale. Whoa. Freedom.

Seven Pillars of Self Care

Health Canada has designated July 24th 2016 International Self-Care day. This is a great opportunity for those of us who are constantly focusing on everything else in life, leaving our own health and well-being behind, to take a moment and consider how we can better care for ourselves. Maybe that means taking a whole day for you, a 20 minute bubble bath, or just a short walk to re-charge. Whatever the effort, taking care of yourself will help you take better care of others. This day gives us the chance to review the 7 Pillars of Self-Care and see how we can better care for ourselves.

Summer Bites

It is a season of fresh foods. A season to inspire the taste buds. Whether you shop at the grocery store, farmer’s market or in your own backyard garden, this is the time of year to enjoy the full taste of delicious vegetables and juicy fruits.

Check out some of our favorite ways to enjoy healthy alternatives using fresh foods this summer.

It’s All Greek To Me: Part 1

Greek yogurt, also known as “strained yogurt”, has become increasing popular not only for its thick and creamy texture, but also for its impressive nutritional value. Greek yogurt is traditional yogurt that has been strained a second time following the fermentation process. This extra straining process reduces the content of natural sugar in yogurt by approximately half and doubles the protein!

Is it really a win to lose?

About a month ago, a pretty controversial research paper, Persistent metabolic adaptation 6 years after “The Biggest Loser” competitiondescribed the negative effects on body metabolism for contestants from ‘The Biggest Loser.’

Celebrate the Commuter Challenge!

June marks the kick-off of another Commuter Challenge week, running June 5th to June 11th. The goal of this challenge is to celebrate physical activity in our community by encouraging people to find more active modes of transportation, like walking and cycling, over driving.

Healthy Meal Exchange

When life gets too busy or stressful, taking the time to plan and cook healthy meals every day can be a huge challenge. It can be incredibly helpful to have healthy homemade meals ready to reheat in your freezer for those especially busy days. A fun way make this happen and have a variety of healthy meals is through a Healthy Meal Exchange!

All you need is 3-4 friends who share an interest in healthy eating and you could end up with a month’s worth of delicious and nutritious meals!

Here’s how it works:

What kind of hungry are you?

Have you ever walked down the street and smelled the delight of fresh bread dancing through the air? Then, instantly thought ‘I am so hungry’? Or perhaps you have sat down an hour after supper with a bowl of popcorn to entertain you while you watch the latest episode of your favourite show.

Were you actually in need of food during these occasions? Chances are that you were not responding to a physical cue, but rather an emotional or habitual trigger.

Public Webinars by the Canadian Obesity Network

The Canadian Obesity Network (CON) is pleased to offer free public webinars.

These webinars feature experts in weight management helping you understand your body, weight and all things between. During the webinar, you can engage with the speakers through live Tweet and Facebook. After the session, you can email your questions. The experts will reply and publish the questions and answers on the CON website. What a great way to stay informed and get engaged.

The next webinar will be Tuesday, May 24, 2016 from 12 to 12:45pm (EST).

Spring in the Kitchen

Sunshine, fresh air and the sight of fresh greens poking through the soil are a few of our favourite spring things. It warms the soul to smell fresh herbs and greens as they welcome us to a season of good eating. Try some of these tasty recipes now on our kitchen menus.

Spring Asparagus Salad http://beardandbonnet.com/spring-asparagus-salad/

This is a great twist on salad. The recipe features asparagus, hard-cooked eggs, lemon and parsley. It’s a breakfast, brunch and dinner favorite.

What Bariatric Surgery Does For You?

From May 1-4, 2016 the bariatric team here at Hotel Dieu Hospital will be sharing their latest research on diabetes and bariatric surgery at the International Congress on Obesity in Vancouver. This research project explored how people living with diabetes are affected by bariatric surgeries.

Celebrating Your Best

When we start on this journey of lifestyle changes to manage our weight we can sometimes fall into some of the ‘diet mentality’ traps. One of the most common traps is the unrealistic weight loss goal. Thinking that we need to lose as much as possible by any means necessary will lead us to make changes to our lives that we can tolerate but not enjoy and to do things that we can’t maintain. This approach can leave us frustrated when we don’t see progress, make us feel like a failure, and lead us to give up.

The Year of Pulses!

Did you know the United Nations declared 2016 the International Year of Pulses? Pulses are a fibre-rich, low fat, source of protein that are inexpensive, good for the environment, and easy to add to your diet.

Pulses are part of the legume family and include chickpeas, lentils, dried or split peas, kidney beans, navy beans, mung beans, black-eyed peas, several varieties of lentils, and the list goes on.


Help! I’m at a weight loss plateau 1 month out of bariatric surgery.

One of the most common frustrations we hear from our patients at three to six weeks after bariatric surgery is lack of weight loss progression. There seems to be an expectation that after surgery, weight loss will be fast and steady. But, weight loss is much more complicated. It is quite normal and expected to experience slowing weight loss, especially early after surgery. You are not doing anything wrong – but you do need to trust that if you take care of your body and allow it to heal, you will see a progression in months to come.

How do you nourish your body?

It’s a question that we ask in our clinic every day. And the answer is too often ‘I don’t know.’

Apples to Zen

Welcome to Apples to Zen, a newsfeed brought to you by the Kingston Bariatric Regional Assessment and Treatment Centre (RATC).

Every day in our clinic, we hear about the information and advice that patients gather from various social media sites. From eating well and supplements to weight and coping with post-bariatric surgery problems, everyone seems to be an ‘expert.’