The Changing Landscape of Dentistry

Changing Patient Population 

My current job is as clinical faculty at a dental school – I oversee mostly third and fourth year dental students as they learn to diagnose, treatment plan, and practice a variety of procedures on adult patients. The kinds of patients that these students see are quite complex with regards to medical history, oral health needs, and limited finances. Though we always teach to create an ideal treatment plan, patients often are unable to afford even the decreased fees. A lot of patients admit to neglecting their teeth due to kids, work, family issues, lack of time, lack of finances, lack of dental knowledge, or they only utilize emergency care by choice on an as needed basis. The preventive aspect of dental and oral health is something that is often neglected, ignored, or is not that important within the scope of peoples’ lives and they often end up at an institution like ours as a result. (more…)

Whole Wheat Oatmeal Blueberry Pancakes

Breakfast food is definitely my favorite food at any time of day. I used whole wheat flour in these pancakes along with quick cooking oats and fresh blueberries. This is a quick and relatively healthy recipe that doesn’t disappoint the taste buds. Enjoy!

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Lemony Butter Bean Salad

One of my favorite places to eat out is the Whole Foods cafe (I maintain that the Whole Foods in Madison, WI on University is the best one I’ve eaten at so far). It’s a fun place to try a variety of healthy grains/tofu/legumes that I otherwise probably wouldn’t venture to cook. Butter beans are one of those things that I had never tried before eating at their salad bar and I really loved the creamy texture and mild flavor. Here how I like to eat my butter beans. Enjoy!

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Tandoori Chicken

This is one of my husband’s favorite chicken recipes so far. He says it is ‘spicy and garlicky with hints of ginger’. Sometimes I reserve the marinade to make Tandoori Paneer or Tofu so I can taste it. The original recipe can be found here for Aarti Sequeira’s Tandoori Chicken. I made a few changes for my own convenience/time.

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Cardamom + Saffron Spiced Almond Biscuits / Badam Puri

Badam (Almond) Puri is a dessert that is usually eaten during Diwali but I decided to try out the recipe that my aunt shared with me since the only Indian sweets I tend to like come out of her kitchen. Almonds are a good source of protein, fiber, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats so I try to eat a handful every day. These puris make it a little more fun to get my daily almond fix and my husband ate 4 crispy chewy puris right from the cooling rack so I know they’re a winning recipe 🙂  They aren’t too sweet and have a nice texture to them without any flour – just lightly sweetened almonds and some delicate spices. I like to toast them in the toaster oven when I eat leftover cookies because they lose a little bit of the crunch while being stored. Enjoy! (more…)

Baked Oatmeal Muffins

I love dessert and I love breakfast. So when I came across the idea of baked oatmeal muffins I was drooling before I even tried it. I found this recipe on Stacy Makes Cents but tweaked it a little and tried a few variations out. These are not overly sweet and they can be changed depending on whatever fruit you have around or if you are like me… you can add a couple chocolate chips 🙂 You can double/half the recipe and it works really well. I usually refrigerate them after they cool and then toast them in the toaster oven to warm them up and give them a little crunchy exterior with the soft interior. Enjoy! (more…)

Chocolate Shiro / Gujarati Semolina Halwa

Shiro is a Gujarati sweet dish made for many celebratory occasions. My mom makes a very special chocolate version that is really unique – I don’t know any other Indian auntie that makes it this way so I consider this recipe a rare treat 🙂    My mom used to make chocolate shiro any time my brother and I weren’t feeling well and it was such a delicious pick-me-up. Recently my husband was feeling under the weather so I asked him if he wanted shiro and his face lit up and just the thought of it seemed to make him feel better. One really interesting thing about Indian food is how a base ingredient like semolina can easily become something sweet or savory (see Upma recipe). This shiro recipe is unique with the addition of chocolate chips – traditionally it is only spiced with cardamom, some golden raisins, and sliced nuts (cashews/almonds). Enjoy!  (more…)

The War on Sugar

Recently, I heard a story titled “From Detox To Elimination Diets, Skipping Sugar May Be The Best Bet” on All Things Considered (NPR). It’s amazing how many times I’ll talk to patients about their dietary habits and the variety of things they tell me – the worst I have heard so far is someone drinking 2 liters of Mountain Dew every day. Many of them have Type II Diabetes or are obese and have tried a variety of ways to lose weight: no red meat, only meat/no carbs, vegan, etc.  It’s also amazing how little information there is on the health benefits of each of them as seen in this article: Science On Diets Is Low In Essential InformationI am vegetarian and my husband as a result eats mostly vegetarian with some chicken/fish/pork scattered throughout the week but the only real dietary limitation we place on ourselves is sugar consumption. We love an occasional ice cream or dessert but everything in moderation.  (more…)

Mushroom Barley Soup

My exposure to mushrooms as a kid was mostly mushrooms on pizza – which I could not stand. After about 15 years of thinking I hated mushrooms I came across this recipe for Mushroom Barley Soup. I decided to give mushrooms another go because I love barley and thyme. I am so glad I did because when served with a delicious chunk of warm crusty bread, this is one of my favorite cold weather dishes! (more…)

Spicy Vegetarian Chili with Quinoa

One of our favorite dinners (especially on a rare cold evening in Texas) is this veggie chili with quinoa. I have tried a few variations on chili using soy substitutes like meat crumbles, but we like quinoa in it the best. You can easily substitute the quinoa with meat crumbles, just saute the crumbles with the onions and garlic in the first step and you’ll have a chili texture that is thicker and more like the real deal. When I have a little extra time I make cornbread following either of these recipes: Homesteader Cornbread (takes about 1 hour) or Golden Sweet Cornbread (takes about 35 min). Enjoy!

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