Community Palette

'Sizzling Science': Nutrition Guru Taylor Wallace’s New Cookbook

September 23, 2019

Taylor Wallace, PhD, CFS, FACN has published his first cookbook, "Sizzling Science." Taylor wrote this cookbook for fun and to honor his Mamawl, the name he called his grandmother who first got him excited about cooking. Taylor often worked on the cookbook at Java House on 17th and Q Street. He would talk about some of the recipes and debated book titles with friends. I think he came up with the perfect title as he is all about science. 

While I am not a chef, those who know me have accused me of using my oven to store sweaters, I am lucky to have friends who generously invite me to occasional home-cooked meals. Those who have already made some of the dishes using the recipes in this great new cookbook have said they are easy to make and delicious. I am waiting for a friend to bake and let me try the Kentucky State Fair “Grand Champion” Sour Cream Coffee Cake on page twenty-three that Taylor and Mamawl created. Hint, Hint Taylor! It won the blue ribbon each of the eight years they entered it into the fair and won the all-around Grand Champion for all foods entered in the Kentucky State Fair three times. 

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Taylor wanted people to be able to use his cookbook to prepare a full day’s meals. I kidded him suggesting maybe the breakfast section should have come last. Sizzling Science is separated into eight sections with the first being the science behind great-tasting dishes. Then breakfast, Appetizers and nibbles, Soups salads and stews, side dishes, main dishes, and desserts. Then to complete your meal and make sure your company goes home not only full and happy but totally relaxed there is the Drinks and cocktails section. Now that the cookbook is finished I can’t imagine Taylor having much time to cook. As he will tell you his real world doesn’t leave much time for cooking.

Taylor is Principal and CEO at the Think Healthy Group, Inc. and an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Nutrition and Food Studies at George Mason University. Prior to founding the Think Healthy Group, Inc., Taylor served as the Senior Director of Science Policy and Government Relations at the National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF) and the Senior Director of Scientific Programs at the National Bone Health Alliance (NBHA). He has extensive experience and expertise in developing and implementing comprehensive and evidence-based legislation, policy, and regulatory programs in the fields of nutrition and food science. His academic research interests are in the area of nutritional interventions to promote health and prevent the onset of chronic disease.

Taylor received his PhD and an MS in Food Science and Nutrition from The Ohio State University and a BS in Food Science and Technology from the University of Kentucky.  He currently manages and operates a large food and nutrition blog, and is a co-host of the mainstream weekly radio show, Risky Behavior™️, where he provides science-based nutrition, food safety, and food technology information to the general public and consumer media. 

Taylor is also a regular guest and contributor to the Dr. Oz Show, NBC4 Washington and has appeared on most major national news stations throughout the United States. He has served on the Boards of the Institute of Food Technologists, Alliance for Food and Health, Feeding Tomorrow, Phi Tau Sigma, Capital Pride Alliance, and DC LGBTQ+ Community Research Advisory Board.  He is a fellow of the American College of Nutrition and is the 2015 recipient of the Charles A. Regus Award, given by the American College of Nutrition for original research and innovation in the field of nutrition. Taylor is a Senior Fellow of the Center for Magnesium Education & Research, the Editor-in-chief of the Journal of Dietary Supplements, Deputy Editor-in-chief of the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, editor of six academic textbooks, and author of over 50 peer-reviewed manuscripts and book chapters. 

So yes he is a busy guy.  But everyone can take advantage of and enjoy the fruits of Taylor’s fun project, Sizzling Science, which makes a great gift for any friend or family member who loves to cook.


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Personal Fitness Trainers Are For Everyone Today

August 22, 2019

Today there is no age limit when it comes to hiring a personal trainer. Since I began training at FIT personal training gym nearly ten years ago it has been interesting to see how their clientele has grown and changed. In recent years it seems more older adults have begun training programs. We used to be called seniors but I like the older adult appellation better. FIT has clients from twenty-five to ninety-five all working to make their lives better. 

Choosing a trainer is always personal. You need to find someone you can respect and who you get along with. It can be an intense and personal relationship. After all you are trusting them with your two most important possessions, your body and your health. 

Every gym in the city now advertises personal trainers. One of the first things to ask any trainer is “what training do you have and what are your credentials”?  You want a trainer who continues to grow and learn. Ten years ago when I first began using a trainer I didn’t ask those questions and was lucky the gym I chose to go to had strict requirements for the trainers they hired. I learned Nildo Silva who I have trained with all this time had not only numerous certifications and education credentials but he went on to become a certified massage therapist with all the additional training that required. I learned the other trainers at FIT all had impressive credentials. Today when my schedule changes or my trainer can’t make a session there is always someone else I can train with who I am confident will have me do the right things for my body. Part of the reason for that is FIT is only a training gym. That means it’s only for people who want to work with a trainer. There are other gyms like that in the District FIT is the one I know. There are at most five to seven trainers working with clients at any one time and you get personal attention and also get to know the other trainers.

Kosta Novaković (Photo by: courtesy of FIT Personal Training) Kosta Novaković

Over the years I have come to appreciate more what working with a trainer can mean for my health. When I first began years ago I went once a week and then went to another gym during the week on my own. As my body has changed, I have had knee replacements in both knees, I have come to appreciate how an incredibly well credentialed trainer can make a real difference. One who understands the body and muscle structure. My trainers worked with my physical therapist and then continued to help me after I stopped going to the PT. The trainers at FIT understand its more than building muscles and six-pacs, it’s about the core and doing the kind of workouts that help with balance and everyday life. Being semi-retired I now see a trainer three days a week and use two different trainers. I still see Nildo but see Bradley Higgins on Fridays and he has been great.

Now that’s not to say the trainers at FIT can’t get help you get six-pac abs, most of them have them. Their clients include on-air TV personalities, politicians, high powered CEOs and young athletes along with older-adults like me. It’s a fun place to spend time. 

Recently FIT has added two new trainers, not only great guys but they have incredible credentials. One is Kosta Novaković. He is a Strength & Conditioning Coach/Rehab Specialist with a degree Degree/Professor of Sport & Physical Education from the University of Belgrade in Serbia. Throughout his degree program Kosta served as a teaching assistant. Chatting with him you realize he is a human encyclopedia of important research in strength and conditioning because of his voracious appetite for continuing his education and digesting volumes of academic journals in health and fitness. He has more than 4 years of experience in fitness training, athletic training, coaching, fitness instructing, and rehabilitation. His experience and education in fitness and human anatomy contribute to his deep and personal understanding of body alignment and movement compensations, awareness of how muscles work in tandem, and how to recognize an individual's current state of fitness and program the appropriate approach/program. In addition to helping clients with wide-ranging goals, Kosta is a great match for clients who come to him with joint pain, arthritis, movement dysfunction and can help them with pain relief and movement mechanics through proper assessment and proper training prescriptions. If you talk with him ask him about his rowing. He was on the Serbian National Rowing Team, representing Serbia in the European Championships. 

The other new trainer is Josh Mansfield, a US Army Veteran. He graduated from Kent State University, Kent, Ohio, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Exercise Science and a Minor in Sports Medicine. After college he did extensive clinical and medical internships in Cardiac Rehab as well as Exercise and Physical Therapy with the Cleveland Clinic’s Main Cardiac Campus in Cleveland, Ohio, treating patients with multiple diagnoses. Josh has also been a Certified Personal Trainer and Certified Group Exercise Instructor for the past 5 years and has trained various age groups and fitness levels with a focus in injury prevention as well as post physical therapy rehab and strengthening. Josh has also been a body building and power lifting competitor and coach for several years training athletes to the top of their sport. Josh is also a physical training NCO for the Army reserves. 

So yes while FIT is the gym I know, and Mike Everts the owner is always willing to talk about personal training; wherever you go to find a trainer make sure they know what they are doing.  Everyone should think about starting with a personal fitness trainer. It can make a huge difference in your life as it has in mine. 


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Brilliant 'Mamma Mia!' at Clear Space Theatre Rehoboth Beach

August 12, 2019

The Clear Space Theatre Company in Rehoboth Beach is having another banner summer. They are selling out their three productions: Mamma Mia!, Hello Dolly and the Wedding Singer. After seeing Mama Mia! it is clear why there is a rush for tickets. The cast was brilliant, as was the musical direction by Melanie Bradley, choreography by Shondelle Graulich, costume design by Robyn Kingsbury and set design by Eddy Seger.  It all comes together under the incredible direction of David Button the Artistic Director and all around genius at Clear Space. 

Tom Sawyer (Photo by: Clear Space Theatre) Tom Sawyer

For anyone who doesn’t know the story of Mamma Mia! it takes place on a small Greek island where Donna has built a taverna and brought up her now twenty year old daughter, Sophie, as a single mom. They are now planning Sophie’s wedding to Sky. Sophie has always wondered who her father was and Donna has never told her. Then Sophie discovers her mother’s old diary and finds out her mother had affairs with three men, Bill, Sam and Harry, twenty-one years ago. She assumes one of them must be her dad. So without telling her mother she invites all three to her wedding. The play is about the craziness that ensues.

The music is all ABBA and the songs like Money, Money, Money and Dancing Queen are those which most people of a certain age could sing along with. It all leads to a fun night in the theater.

David directs all three plays and many of the actors have roles in all of them. I can’t mention them all but they all deserve kudos for their wonderful work. It is an incredible opportunity for the mostly young cast many of whom are theater students from schools such as Pace in New York, Temple in Philadelphia, and the University of Delaware to name some. The leads in Mama Mia! all seem like seasoned performers though many are just starting out. Jana Jackson who plays Sophie, the daughter trying to find out who her father is commands the stage like a pro with her fine acting and beautiful voice even though this is her first leading role. She is a student at Pace University in New York. Tom Sawyer as Sam, one of the potential fathers, has a really strong voice and a commanding stage presence. He is a recent graduate with a BFA from The Boston Conservatory. Frankie Rocco as Sky, Sophie’s fiancé has a strong stage presence and the good looks of a leading man. He has just graduated from Molloy/Cap 21 from the BFA theater program. Not all the actors are students. Playing Donna is Autumn Schneider and she makes the role her own with her brilliant acting and mesmerizing voice. Also great are Caroline Anderson as Tanya who recently received her BA in musical theater from Courtland State university of New York and Carissa Meiklejohn as Rosie who is a local performer living in Milton, DE. 

Jana Jackson (Photo by: Clear Space Theatre) Jana Jackson

What is so great at Clear Space and on display in this show is all the ensemble actors are very talented and the staging allows their talents to shine through. Those like Kodiak Thompson a musical theater major at Temple University and Erin Damers returning to Clear Space from last season who is in the ensemble for Mamma Mia! and plays Ermengarde in Hello Dolly.  

There are still some tickets left for all the shows but they are going fast. If you are headed to Rehoboth Beach I suggest going online at Clear Space Theatre and ensuring yourself a wonderful night in the theater. 


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