Supermarket Dietitian Symposium 8.0

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I love my profession but as an unconventional dietitian working in the supermarket I feel lonely sometimes. Retail dietetics is definitely growing in Canada but the States has their shit together. I’m writing this from the annual Supermarket Dietitian Symposium in San Diego, California, whose sole purpose, as a conference is to help retail dietitians share ideas with each other and guess how many Canadian supermarket dietitians are here? 3! 3 dietitians out of about 100! Being out-numbered actually inspires me advocate for my profession to prove how valuable we are in grocery stores. We are the frontline staff and really the customer service team in any store we’re in. I love this conference, not just because the food is amazing, or they’re located somewhere sunny and warm, but because I love hearing from other like-minded supermarket dietitians regarding what they are doing in their stores or for their chain. This gets me excited to bring some fresh ideas back home.

Besides bringing home a list of new programs to launch, we also talked about some pretty hot topics – farmed fish and A2 milk!

Farmed fish

Is farmed fish really seafood for the future? The ocean takes up about 70% of the planet but only 2% of the food supply comes from the ocean – is this sustainable in a world where we will eventually have to feed 9 billion people? Especially when we (as dietitians) are recommending we consume fish 2x/week? According to Ocean Wise, farmed seafood can be sustainable depending on what species is being farmed and how it’s farmed. In some cases, the farmed option is far better than the wild counterpart, such as mussels, clams, oysters and scallops.   

A2 Milk 

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A2 beta-casein is the original protein gene found in milk. A mutation caused the A1 protein to appear a few thousand years ago. Unfortunately, the A1 protein can cause inflammation in the intestines. This is due to the fact that the A1 gene can readily cleave and the cleaved protein (BCM-7) is the problem. The BCM-7 is a receptor ligand (signaling molecule) that binds to a receptor in the intestines triggering digestive discomfort. New research shows that the inflammation caused by the BCM-7 could prevent lactase from doing its job, so interesting! Introducing A2 milk...

Tell me about your favourite conference and why you love being there?

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