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Southern Remedy

Southern Remedy is Mississippi Public Broadcasting’s flagship wellness show dedicated to keeping Mississippians healthy. It consists of a weekly radio program hosted by Dr. Rick deShazo and Dr. Allyn Bond, and television programs, Southern Remedy: Mississippi's Big Problemand Southern Remedy: Premature Parenthood

Mississippi has the highest number of teen births in the nation. Southern Remedy: Premature Parenthood explores teen pregnancy through interviews and stories with teen mothers, educators, physicians, community leaders, and government officials. Dr. Rick deShazo not only examines the severity of the situation and its effect on our state but also goes beyond the statistics to showcase the individuals affected most by teen pregnancy. Premature Parenthood airs May 14 - May 18 at 7 p.m. on MPB TV.

The radio show invites listeners to call in or email with their medical questions. The show covers a vast range of topics from smoking cessation to sore throats in toddlers and regularly features medical experts talking about specific topics.

On Mississippi's Big Problem, Dr. Rick digs into the biggest crisis facing Mississippi in many years -- obesity. He and his team travel the state to find out why obesity is such a problem.  Can anything be done, or is the state destined to be overweight and unhealthy?

What's in a chicken nugget?

Dr. Rick wanted to know what was in a chicken nugget, and what he found might surprise you...

Southern Remedy Healthy Living
  • Reproduction and Fertility image
    Excerpt () | Air date 09/03/14
    Reproduction, fertility and answering your calls. 
  • Birth Order image
    Excerpt () | Air date 09/02/14
    How much does birth order have to do with who you are? 
  • Depression and Suicide image
    Excerpt () | Air date 08/29/14
    Depression and suicide. Learn the signs and symptoms of depression. 
  • Immunization image
    Excerpt () | Air date 08/29/14
    The reasons for vaccination.
  • Vaccination image
    Excerpt () | Air date 08/27/14
    General health calls and emails
  • Open Mic image
    Excerpt () | Air date 08/20/14
    Dr. Rick takes all of your calls on whatever you need to know.
  • ENT time! image
    Excerpt () | Air date 08/21/14
    When do you know a cold is more than a cold.
  • Heart Disease image
    Excerpt () | Air date 08/22/14
    How heart disease looks different for women.
  • Hypertension & Cholesterol image
    Excerpt () | Air date 08/25/14
    Hypertension & Cholesterol questions and comments
  • Air date 08/21/14
    Episode #302
    A round-table discussion of the roll of physicians in the movement for social justice in Mississippi.
  • Air date 05/05/14
    Episode #
    Host Dr. Rick deShazo & co-host Melissa Faith Payne examine the disease and the barriers that prevent treatment and care.
  • Air date 01/30/14
    Episode #201
    MPB's Jeffery Hess speaks with Mississippi Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney about the health insurance exchange.
  • Air date 01/30/14
    Episode #201
    Southern Remedy Web Extra: Dr. Rick speaks with Dr. Tim Alford, a general practitioner in Kosciusko, Mississippi, about how the practice of medicine is affected by the recent changes in health care.
  • Air date 01/30/14
    Episode #201
    Dr. Rick and the Southern Remedy team explore how the new Affordable Care Act affects Mississippians.
  • Air date 10/31/13
    Episode #
    Dr. Rick and the Southern Remedy team examine prescription drug addiction in Mississippi.
  • Air date 08/29/13
    Episode #10
    This episode of Southern Remedy explores the complicated nature of sports today.
  • Air date 06/27/13
    Episode #
    Southern Remedy goes inside the growing culture of bodybuilding in Mississippi
  • Air date 05/23/13
    Episode #
    What happens when a trauma case enters a trauma center? What's the difference between emergency and trauma?

Southern Remedy: Premature Parenthood explores teen pregnancy through five consecutive nights of coverage. From profiles of teen moms, to information on sex education legislation, to a discussion of the role of religion, the series provides a comprehensive look at the crisis.

The full press release can be found here (PDF or Word).


Episode Information

Each document features details on the episode, a list of those featured, and statistics.

  • Episode One: The Moms - PDF or Word
  • Episode Two: Myths and Facts - PDF or Word
  • Episode Three: Teen Moms Panel - PDF or Word
  • Episode Four: Sex Education - PDF or Word
  • Episode Five: Role of the Church - PDF or Word



For full size images, please click on the thumbnails below.

Ashton Jenkins and Karson
Nineteen-year-old Ashton Jenkins plays with her one-month-old son, Karson.
Dr. Rick deShazo, Ashton Jenkins and Karson
Dr. Rick talks with Ashton Jenkins about her experience as the teenage mother of one-month-old Karson.
Dr. Rick deShazo
UMC's NICU is the only place in MS capable of taking care of the smallest and the sickest -- often, these are the babies of teen mothers.



DrRick “Dr. Rick,” the friendly doctor on “Southern Remedy” who dispenses sound medical advice with a Southern take on life, is, in real life, Dr. Richard deShazo, a highly respected physician in academic and scientific circles across the nation.

He currently is professor of medicine at the University of Mississippi Medical Center where he has been since 1998. He stepped down as chairman of the Department of Medicine in 2010 to devote more of his considerable energies to address the state’s health crisis. Besides his work with Mississippi Public Broadcasting, he is actively engaged in a variety of activities to improve health literacy, eliminate disparities in health care and promote racial reconciliation. He still maintains an active medical practice and teaching schedule.

He also serves on the administrative council of the Council of Academic Specialties of the Association of American Medical Colleges which allows him to have a major voice in how medical schools train their students in an evolving practice environment.

A native of Birmingham, he holds an M.D. from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. During medical school he received a scholarship to study the National Health System in the United Kingdom.

After an internship in pediatrics at Children’s Hospital in Birmingham, he completed residency training in internal medicine at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center, where he also completed fellowships in adult and pediatric clinical immunology and fellowships in microbiology and immunology at the Walter Reed Institute of Research. Between 1977 and 1980, he served on the faculty of the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, performed collaborative research at the National Institutes of Health and was director of the immunology research laboratory at Walter Reed. 

In 1980, he joined Tulane University School of Medicine in New Orleans and became a co-investigator and director of immunology for the Tulane-LSU AIDs Clinical Trials Center, one of the first centers funded by the NIH to study HIV infection.  He published a series of original investigations dealing with the immunologic abnormalities associated with HIV infection in homosexual and hemophiliac populations.  He also published original investigations on lung host defense and inflammatory response that resulted in a “State of the Art” publication in the American Review of Respiratory Diseases in 1981.  During his last four years at Tulane, he served as vice chair for clinical affairs of the Department of Medicine and associate chief of staff at the New Orleans VA Medical Center.

Dr. deShazo returned to Alabama to become the second chair and director of the residency program in internal medicine of the Department of Medicine at the University of South Alabama in 1989.  The faculty numbers, research productivity and clinical programs tripled and he was recognized by the medical students for excellence in teaching.  He worked with entomologists from the US Department of Agriculture to extend NIH supported studies performed at Tulane on hypersensitivity reactions to insects that led to a “Current Concepts” review in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1990.  He also published a series of papers that first characterized the syndromes of fungal sinusitis that resulted in a second NEJM “Current Concepts” publication in 1997. 

Dr. deShazo joined the UMMC faculty in 1998 as chair of the Department of Medicine.  Faculty numbers, research productivity, and clinical programs have tripled and the department has been named “Best Clinical Department” by UMC medical students for 11 of his 12 years as chair.  With the help of numerous colleagues, he continued his research and publications in medical entomology and sinus disease.  He now has 170 publications in the peer reviewed medical literature and 58 book chapters.  He also serves as an Associate Editor of the American Journal of Medicine and the Southern Medical Journal and on the editorial boards of the Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology and the American Journal of Medical Sciences. Other scientific activities include service on NIH study sections and FDA expert panel. Dr. deShazo’s was elected as a Distinguished Alumnus of Birmingham Southern College and received the Morton Original Research Award for the Southern Medical Society. He was designated a Billy S. Guyton Distinguished Professor in 2002.

Dr. deShazo has participated in a number of professional and service activities.  He has served as president of the Association of the Professors of Medicine, the organization of the chairs of medicine for the United States, and as president and recipient of the Founders Medal for the Southern Society for Clinical Investigation.  He served for six years as an elected board member of the American Board of Allergy and Immunology and for four years on the American Board of Internal Medicine and the American Board of Medical Specialists.  He was elected a Distinguished Fellow of the American College of Allergy and Immunology and has received Special Service awards from both the American College and American Academy of Asthma, Allergy and Immunology.  He is listed in Marquis Who’s Who in American Medicine and Who’s Who in the World and has been listed in Best Doctors for the last 12 years. 

Dr. deShazo is married to his high school sweetheart, Gloria deShazo.  The deShazo’s have three children, Melanie deShazo Amberger,  a nurse practitioner in Mobile, Dr. Molly deShazo Buck,  an oncologist at UAB, and Dr. Matthew Denson deShazo, a fellow in cardiology at UMMC. The deShazo’s have four grandchildren. All of the deShazos are active members of the United Methodist Church. 


Q:  Should I get a second opinion?

A:  A second opinion is a visit to a physician other than the one a patient has been seeing for a particular problem in order to get additional information or a new point of view. Patients should not apologize for getting second opinions. In fact, in some circumstances, they are required by certain insurers. In cases where there is a problem in reaching a diagnosis or continuing treatment fails to resolve a medical problem, a second opinion is a wise decision.

Second opinions should not offend any physician. However, they should be undertaken with full disclosure and with an explanation. Few physicians are offended when they are thanked for their hard work in addressing a problem and asked one on one if they think it would be useful to get a second opinion.   This is preferable to getting a second opinion without notifying the treating physician first, especially if there is a possibility that the patient wishes to continue seeing the treating physician after the opinion is obtained. Furthermore, the treating physician is in the best position to recommend another physician for a second opinion.

After obtaining a recommendation for a second opinion, the patient should feel free to seek other recommendations from friends and relatives on other choices. A call to the prospective second opinion-physician’s office to say that he/she has been recommended for a consultation as a second opinion is a good idea. If the office staff is not cordial and welcoming, it is unlikely that the visit will go well.

A second opinion is often sought under the following circumstances:

  • The treating physician recommends one.
  • The insurance company requires it for a procedure or surgery.
  • A treatment is recommended that the patient questions.
  • A physician diagnoses a serious condition and the patient is not sure the diagnosis is correct.
  • The patient and the physician are not communicating well.

Some companies and agencies offer online opinions, which may be useful in some circumstances. However, opportunities are lost for hands on evaluation and discussion, therefore a face to face second opinion is preferable.

Q:  Should I be concerned about my low back pain?

A:  A Common Problem
Low back pain is one of the most common medical problems. 80% of people in the US have at least one episode of back pain during their lifetime.  Back pain results from problems with the back bone and the muscles and nerves that are attached to it.

Structure of the Back
The back is formed by bones, muscles and nerves that work together to let us bend over, walk around, and turn from side to side. The best way to get an idea of how this works is to look at a chicken neck. You will see there are bones stacked on top of each other, bones called vertebrae. They are separated by little pieces of cartilage called intervertebral discs that keep the bones from rubbing on each other. The spine is kept in line by muscles that run up and down it like elastic bands. The spine covers the spinal cord, the major electrical cable between the brain and the body. Nerves come off at various points along the spinal cord along the back bone from the neck to the low back through holes in the spinal column and transmit electrical signals for movement to the arms, legs, and other body parts.

There are 7 vertebrae in the neck, 12 in the chest part of the back, and 5 in the low back.  They all have numbers, like L1-L5. S1 is the sacrum of the pelvis on which the last lumbar vertebra sits.

Bad Stuff Happens
With undue pressure from lifting or obesity or unusual twists or turns, the vertebra can collapse and the disk can pop out of their space to impinge on the nerves, so that intense pain occurs. There are also diseases of the bones like osteoporosis that make the bones soft and cause vertebral collapse are associated with these problems.

We Frequently Can’t Find What is Broken
The cause of over 85% of back pain is unknown and is called non-specific back pain. That is, we are not smart enough to figure out what causes it. When disks wear out, degenerative disk disease occurs. In osteoarthritis of the back, extra bone is formed around the joints (bone spurs) connecting the vertebrae to each other. These bone spurs can pinch nerves and cause (osteoarthritis) back pain. This is called facet arthropathy. Sometimes the vertebrae slide out of alignment, a condition called spondylolisthesis.  Too much pressure on the disks causes them to pop out (slipped-disc or herniated disc) resulting in leg pain and/or weakness when a disc pinches a nerve.  Lumbar spinal stenosis is a condition that occurs in patients with a long history of back osteoarthritis that can pinch the nerves in the low back to cause back and leg pain and abnormal bowel and bladder function.  There are some rare causes of back pain not mentioned here as well.

Alarm Signs
Certain symptoms are alarm symptoms and require that medical consultation be obtained. These include weakness of muscles or extremities, loss of bladder or bowel control, or persistent pain, especially if it involves electrical pain running down the back of the buttocks or leg. Anyone who is 70 years or older with new back pain, has pain that does not go away at night or even when laying down, has fever or weight loss, a previous history of cancer,  the use of steroids,  had a fall, or has pain that lasts more than 4 weeks should be seen by a physician. A good place to start is a primary care provider (family or internal medicine physician, gynecologist, physician’s assistant or nurse practitioner), but consultation with an orthopedist, neurosurgeon, or rheumatologist may be required. Imaging studies such as XRay, CT or MRI may be necessary in some cases.

What You Can Do On Your Own
Time Helps

Unless low back pain is caused by a serious medical condition, recovery should occur quickly and for sure within 6 weeks.  Many people are concerned they will hurt their back further or slow recovery by remaining active. However, studies show patients recover quicker when they remain active and bed rest makes recovery slower. If pain is severe, bed rest may be necessary for a short period of time, but certainly no more than a day. If it is so severe that you can’t move after a day, you probably need to see a healthcare provider.


Experts recommend that most people with back pain continue to work if it is possible, but avoid prolonged sitting, standing, heavy lifting or twisting. When standing at work, stepping on a block of wood or a brick with one foot may be helpful.  You should switch feet every 10 minutes or so.


For relief of pain, we prefer Tylenol® (acetaminophen), but Advil ® (Ibuprofen) and Aleve® (Naproxen) can also be taken for pain, following the instructions on the bottle. It is more effective to take the doses on a regular basis for 3-5 days than waiting for the pain to become severe before the next dose.  Muscle relaxants are no better than Ibuprofen and can make you drowsy, so they should not be take while driving or operating machinery. The ones that work, like Flexiril ® (cyclobenzaprine), require a prescription.

Exercises, etc.

Back exercises should not be done after an episode of acute back pain. However, sitting in a tub of warm water, applying a heating pad or cold pack to the low back may be helpful.  If pain is present for more than 4-6 weeks, physical therapy may be recommended by your physician. Chiropractic manipulation appears to be as effective as pain medication and exercise. Most clinical trials have used 2 treatments per week for 2-3 weeks. Acupuncture may be a reasonable option for people with chronic back pain, but it is not clear if it works for acute back pain. Massage and yoga work better for chronic low back pain than acute back pain. Injections of steroids and local anesthetics (epidural injections) are helpful in some people to relieve pain.


Studies have not shown corsets or back braces to be helpful in preventing or treating low back pain. However, Dr. Rick finds short term use of a back brace to be very useful with his own spells of low back pain.  You can get them at any of the big box stores. They are worn tightly around the waist during acute episodes. No benefit demonstrated from traction, special mattresses, or voodoo, although voodoo is interesting to watch.

Disaster Prevention
Folks with low back pain should learn the right way to bend and lift. Lifting should always be done with the knees bent and the abdominal muscles tight. People who sit or stand for long periods should take regular breaks and move around. Swimming and back exercises are effective in preventing recurrences.  

Handy references include the website of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgery ( and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders (

Q:  How can I manage my high blood pressure without taking medication?

A:  Managing mild to moderate high blood pressure without medicines is possible in many patients, but this approach takes time to work.   The presence of high blood pressure is associated with daily and ongoing damage to the lining of blood vessels. During the period that lifestyle changes are under way to lower blood pressure, a blood pressure medication should be administered. Usually, inexpensive medications like hydrocholorathiazide are effective will bridge the gap. However, leaving high blood pressure untreated, even for brief periods is unsafe and there is no quick, non-medication fix that works. 

Most high blood pressure is “essential” hypertension, a term meaning that the cause is unknown. This commonly runs in families, develops in adulthood, is mild to moderate in severity (blood pressures less than 150/90), and is associated with being overweight.

The only non-medication approaches that have shown any long term benefit on blood pressure control are weight loss, increased exercise and salt restriction. Exercise and salt restriction should be undertaken in consultation with a medical professional who can exclude the presence of heart disease and diabetes as a part of the initial evaluation.  Southern Remedy recommends lifelong changes in eating habits to lose weight including portion control and avoidance of high calorie fast foods rich in salt, sugar and fat. 

Weight control is the most effective way to lower blood pressure without medicine. The definition of overweight and/or obese is based on a calculation of body mass index (BMI). You are overweight if your BMI is greater than 25 and obese if it is greater than 30. See the Southern Remedy BMI calculator. 

Exercise programs should begin slowly and gradually increase over time and continued thereafter as a part of lifestyle modification. Regular aerobic (walking, running) for 20 to 30 minutes most days of the week can lower blood pressure, although the effect is not great among older adults. To maintain this benefit, you must continue to exercise. Salt restriction is more effective in some individuals than others, but limitation to 1,500 mg of sodium chloride per day is recommended. Diet approaches include portion and calorie control. However, the body requires about 1,200 calories a day just to survive. We don’t suggest calorie restriction below that level. 

Most individuals with hypertension will require medicine for management for that high blood pressure at some point in their life, so lifestyle changes are often a temporary fix for this problem. The pre-disposition is still there. The average American with high blood pressure requires 3 medications to effectively control the blood pressure. These are usually added in a stepwise fashion. The good news is that safe, relatively inexpensive blood pressure medications are now available that have few side effects.

There are no herbals, vitamin supplements or home remedies that are effective for treatment of this serious condition.  Getting your blood pressure to the normal range, 120/80 or less, is one of the most important medical goals for anyone who wishes to live a long and healthy life.

Dietary changes and blood pressure:

  • Reduce sodium
  • Reduce alcohol
  • Eat more fruits and vegetables
  • Eat more fiber
  • Eat more fish
  • Drink less than 2 cups of coffee per day 

Q:  I think I have nail fungus.  What should I do?

A:  The medical name for nail fungus is Onychomycosis and few people can pronounce it. Somewhere between 4-18 % of patients have fungus of fingernails or toenails.   Toenail fungus is more common. There is little information to determine who is at risk for this problem, although it occurs commonly in seniors, swimmers, patients with diabetes, and those with fungus infection of the skin around the nails.

It is usually not associated with any long-term side effects other than ugly nails. It is rarely associated with bacterial infections of the skin around the nail.

The big toe is usually the first to be affected with a white, yellow, or brown discoloration at a corner of the nail on the end. This gradually spreads over the entire nail.


There are other nail conditions that may look like fungus. If treatment with over the counter medicines does not sort this out, or if there are other findings such as signs of infection of the skin around the nail, medical advice should be sought.

The only way to make a sure diagnosis is to have the doctor scrape the nail and send it fungal stain and/or culture to see if it grows fungus. This is expensive.  Most physicians perform a treatment trial first. The medications that work best are oral anti-fungal agents that require a prescription and followup by a physician as they can cause side effects. These include: terbinafine, itraconazole, griseofulcin or fluconazole. Terbinafine and itraconazole seem to be the more effective choices, but treatment and observation may be necessary for 12 months and recurrence is common.


There are a number of creams that can be useful, some of which are over the counter. I like prescription econazole cream applied to the nail once a day for a year or so, although longer use may be necessary.  Ciclopirox is an anti-fungal nail polish that also requires prescription and doesn’t work well in my experience. Over the counter concentrations of anti-fungal agents used for fungus of the skin may be helpful, but are usually less effective than prescription strength anti-fungal creams.

Many of our patients feel the most effective treatment is Vicks Vapo-Rub applied to the nails once or twice a day. This product contains camphor, an ancient medicine used for a variety of complaints years ago. I think it is as effective as any product available, but know of no scientific data to support that opinion.  Southern Remedy listeners highly recommend this approach.

Finally, It is important for individuals with toenail or foot fungus to keep the feet dry at all times. This involves wearing shoes that let your feet breath (or no shoes at all) and frequent changes of socks.  Cotton socks absorb moisture the best. Powdering the feet with baby powder or cornstarch also is helpful.


The University of Mississippi Medical Center

The Mississippi State Department of Health

US adult obesity data & statistics

US child obesity data & statistics

Mississippi childhood obesity rates

Childhood obesity initiatives in MS

Mississippi School Health Programs


Mississippi's teen pregnancy rates are historically high:

  • In 2005, the teen pregnancy rate was 85 pregnancies per 1000 15-19 year old females. At the same time, the national rate was 69.5 per 1000 15-19 year old females.
  • In 2010 Mississippi had the highest rate of births to teen mothers at 55 per 1000 15-19 year old females.

Statistics point out problems for children in Mississippi, including the teen mothers:

  • In 2009, Mississippi had the highest percentage of low-birth weight babies at 12.2% and the highest percent of very low birth weight babies at 2.15%.
  • In 2009, Mississippi ranked last regarding overall child well being.
  • In 2010, 33% of Mississippi children lived in poverty, the highest rate in the nation.
  • In 2008-2009, 62% of students in Mississippi graduated on time (in four years) – this is the lowest percentage in the nation.
  • In 2010, 23% of Mississippians aged 18 – 24 did not attend school, did not work, and had no degree beyond high school, the 2nd highest rate in the nation.

Teen pregnancy has an economic toll in Mississippi as well:

  • In 2008, teen childbearing cost taxpayers at least $159 million.
  • Between 1991 -2008, there were approximately 146,379 teen births in the state, costing taxpayers $3.7 billion dollars. 

Mississippi has the highest rate of adult obesity in the nation:

  • Approximately one-third of Mississippi adults (33.8%) are obese.
  • More than two-thirds of Mississippi adults are either overweight or obese (68.6%).

Mississippi adults lead the nation in physical inactivity and have the lowest consumption of fruits & vegetables, as well as the highest consumption of sodas.

Mississippi has high rates of disease, disability, and death:

  • Premature death
  • SSI beneficiaries, overall disability
  • Heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, & stroke

There is an association between obesity and diabetes rates.


Obesity Affects the “Bottom Line”:

  • The estimated health care cost attributed to obesity in the U.S. in 2008 was $79 billion and in Mississippi was $925 million.
  • If rates continue at their current levels, the U.S. is expected to spend $344 billion on health care costs attributable to obesity in 2018, accounting for more than 21 percent of the nation’s direct health care spending.
  • If rates continue at their current levels, Mississippi’s projected health care cost attributable to obesity in 2018 will be $3.9 billion.
  • If obesity levels were held at their current rates, the U.S. could save an estimated $820 per adult in health care costs by 2018 ‐a savings of almost $200 billion dollars.

Overweight Children Often Become Overweight Adults:

  • Childhood obesity is a significant predictor of coronary heart disease in adulthood.
  • Overweight adolescents have a 70% chance of becoming overweight or obese adults.
  • Overweight children are at risk for early development of chronic disease, leading to disability and premature death.
  • Overweight children miss more school days and demonstrate lower academic performance.

Mississippi Childhood Obesity Rates:

  • Mississippi has the highest rate for childhood obesity among all states.
  • Obesity rates among Mississippi public school children appear to be leveling off.
  • Racial disparities in obesity rates among Mississippi’s children are increasing.

**Source: Mississippi Center for Health Policy**


The Southern Remedy Weight Management Program consists of two parts, the 7 Step Food Detox Program and the Daily Calorie Plate. Click on the links below to learn more about these weight loss tools. Dr. Rick recommends completing the Food Detox Program before implementing the techniques outlined in the Daily Calorie Plate.

7 Step Food Detox Program

10 Tips to Help You with the Food Detox Program


Childhood obesity has been on the rise to such an extent that it has become a major public health concern. Childhood obesity occurs when excess body fat affects a child’s health and well-being. Obesity is diagnosed using Body Mass Index (BMI) which is a formula based upon your height and weight. Obesity usually develops due to unhealthy habits and it physically, mentally and emotionally affects the children who are overweight.




Southern Remedy’s Holiday Eating Recipe Makeover


Instead Of:


Oil when baking

Unsweetened Applesauce

Egg yolks

2 egg whites or ½ cup egg substitute per egg

Whole milk

Fat free (skim) or 1% (low fat) milk

Heavy cream

Half and half mixed with fat free evaporated milk (equal parts)

Ice cream

Frozen yogurt

Sour Cream

Low fat sour cream or low fat yogurt

White Flour

Whole Wheat Flour


Half amount (toasted)


Sugar free syrup or preserves

Pie Crust

Low fat graham cracker crust

Canned Fruit in syrup

Canned fruit in water or juice

Marinade or salad dressing

Fruit Juice as a meat marinade or can add fruit juice to make a dressing vinaigrette


Half amount (toasted)


Light or Low fat butter

Chocolate chips

Dried Fruit or cocoa


Splenda Sugar Blend

Vegetable or Corn oil

Olive or canola oil

Cream of Mushroom or Cream of Chicken

98% fat free cream of mushroom or cream of chicken

Cheese (full fat)

Low fat cheese (fat free cheese does not melt well)








Meal Item & Contents


Try This

Egg Nog

Egg yolk and heavy cream

Egg substitute (egg white) and skimmed condensed milk

Pumpkin Pie

Heavy Cream and white sugar

Skim milk and brown sugar (1/2 amt) and add more spice


Meat drippings

Low fat or fat free broth (low sodium) OR refrigerate gravy to harden and skim off fat

Chips and Dip

Regular Chips and full fat sour cream dip

Cup fresh vegetables with low fat yogurt or low fat sour cream with herbs OR Pita Chips with Hummus

Green Beans

Bacon or other high fat meat

Slivered almonds

Sweet Potato Casserole

Butter, sugar, marshmallows

Chopped pecans and cinnamon, orange or apple juice to sweeten or sprinkle brown sugar

Stuffing or Dressing

White Bread, lard or butter

Whole grain breadcrumbs, low fat, low sodium chicken broth


Skin of turkey

Remove excess fat and skin

Meat Entrée

Full Fat Meats

Ham, pork tenderloin, top sirloin, turkey

Green Salad

Iceberg Lettuce

Romaine or green leaf lettuce with chopped fresh vegetables

Ambrosia Fruit Salad

Canned fruit, coconut, sour cream, whipped cream, powdered sugar

Fresh Fruit Salad

Mashed Potatoes

Butter and whole milk

Chicken broth, skim milk, garlic, and parmesan cheese

Green Bean Casserole

Canned green beans, cream soup (full fat), fried onion rings for topping

Fresh green beans, 98% fat free cream of mushroom soup, almonds for topping

Dessert Cake

Pound Cake

Angel Food Cake with fresh strawberries


Many thanks to Olivia R. Henry, MS, RD for helping the Makeover. 


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