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A Guide to Healthy Eating in Syracuse, New York

A Guide to Healthy Eating in Syracuse, New York

In an interview with Kathryn Szklany, a health expert, we discuss what healthy eating means. Some people may think its about calorie restriction or eating diet snacks instead of junk food. Szklany is a member of the Central New York Dietetic Association.  Szklany explains what it means to be gluten-free, vegan, and ketogenic. We also explore the best options for these certain diets and where to find them around the Central New York area.

Kathryn Szklany. SUNY Oswego

Healthy vs Unhealthy

The health expert explains how we should be thinking about what exactly the nutritional benefits are every time we eat food. Szklany is a member of the Central New York Dietetic Association. Szklany makes it clear that when we eat processed foods we are getting no nutritional benefits. “A lot of processed foods have added sodium. We know that sodium is not good for your heart health; it can make you retain water. All of these processed foods have high-fructose corn syrup, which is awful for you,” Szklany says.

Healthy eating can be easy to when you go grocery shopping. The more foods you buy that aren’t in a box or bag, the more healthy your diet is going to be. Consider reading the labels of foods to see what it contains. If you come across products with long names and hard to pronounce ingredients, it may not be as healthy to eat. Try your best to avoid products high in sodium or sugar or contain toxic food ingredients like artificial sweeteners and preservatives. Look for products high in fiber, protein, and other essentials that your body needs.

However, the health expert informs us that there are definitely benefits to being gluten-free. “One way to eat gluten-free is to just avoid processed foods, and that’s a healthier way to eat because you’re just eating fruits, and vegetables, and drinking milk,” she says.

photo by Monika Grabkowska

Healthy Restaurants of Syracuse

Szklany suggested a few restaurants that offer healthier options for when eating out. As an SU alumni, she knew the hotspots for those who have diet restrictions or are looking to eat healthier.

Original Grain is an excellent option for people who are on the gluten-free diet. The health food restaurant in Syracuse, New York offers a variety of sandwiches, toasts, and wraps, all on gluten-free bread. Some popular brunch selections offered on multigrain or gluten-free toast include “Egg Man” and “Lox on Lox on Lox”.

Though, if eggs, protein, or dairy is not necessarily an option for someone or they are on a vegan diet, Strong Hearts Cafe, is another healthy alternative in town. The environmentally conscious restaurant is a 100 percent vegan establishment, which also serves breakfast foods, sandwiches, and even milkshakes!

“You can see from these different restaurants you have options, and not only that, but you don’t have to ask the waitress a million questions. These restaurants are labeling the food on their menu: vegan, vegetarian, or gluten-free,” the health expert says. “It’s easier to have it as a lifestyle now than it was 10 years ago.”

Lastly, if someone is looking for diverse ketogenic options, Dolce Vita is highly recommended. The Jamaican and Chinese bistro offers a specific ketogenic menu with a variety of soups, appetizers, and entrées for people to try. The ketogenic diet is a fairly new craze, but is rather successful in helping with anything from preventing seizures for epileptics to a person’s overall quality of life. It entails a high fat diet and very low carbohydrates.

Brooke Larke

For more information about the ketogenic diet, visit Crystal Flores’ page Flores is a colleague of Szklany who specializes in the ketogenic diet.

About The Author


This site celebrates the people places, and culture that make Central New York one of the most vibrant and livable regions in the country. From Auburn to Utica, from Syracuse, to Ithaca, this is LivableCNY.

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