Posts Tagged ‘December’

Virtuous Vices, Ridiculed Remedies

Posted by Carten Cordell / Monday, December 26th, 2011

Recent research suggests women who pop vitamins die sooner than those who don’t; more chocolate means less cardiovascular disease (milk and dark varieties); cheese and diet soda are not so bad after all; those who fear dementia have a friend in java; and alcohol each day keeps the doc away. Board-certified internist Dr. Grace Keenan, medical director and CEO of Ashburn-based Nova Medical Group, says not so fast.—Natalie Kaar

  Vitamins Chocolate Diet Soda, Cheese Coffee Alcohol
Female vitamin takers die sooner than those who don’t take vitamins. Chocolate can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease (milk and dark). Both cheese and diet soda are not so bad after all in terms of weight gain. Java can aid in avoiding dementia. Daily alcohol intake improves overall heath.
“The supplements used in the study [see SOURCES below] are synthetically made—especially vitamin E and Folic acid. Synthetic vitamins are not the same as natural forms of vitamin E. Unfortunately, supplements are made differently from one company to the next; therefore, naturally made products should be used in the study. … I still recommend my patients to use multivitamins (but in natural forms only).” “I still firmly believe that dark chocolate is fine in moderation. Milk chocolate is often high in sugar and fat content that I believe, if eaten regularly and [in] high amount, would lead to obesity, diabetes and eventually heart disease. Again, moderation is the key here!” “Artificial sweetener in diet soda has been shown to increase the risk of weight gain and diabetes. I, personally, do not recommend my patients to consume any artificial sweeteners.” Nova Medical Group’s Dr. Teerawong Kasiolarn adds about cheese, “As far as weight gain, I believe that cheese can indirectly lead to weight gain … Eating too much saturated fat can lead to insulin resistance (as in type II diabetes) … and increase weight gain when your body cannot use insulin efficiently.” “Coffee in moderation (one cup/day) would be fine. People should not rely on coffee to improve memory because eating a healthy whole food diet and regular exercise can do a better job. Preventing diabetes is also important since there is a link of diabetes, dementia and Alzheimer’s. Excessive caffeine causes stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system, increased heart rate, palpitations, anxiety, acid reflux and insomnia to name a few.” “I have not been convinced that in any segment of the female population that alcohol is healthy. Perhaps in a very unhealthy segment of the male population, there is a light advantage garnered to men after drinking one glass of red wine daily.”
Aim for natural forms of multivitamins. OK in moderation. Dark chocolate still best. Try to avoid any artificial sweeteners. Don’t overdo cheese. Coffee is OK in moderation. Light drinking may be beneficial for some men.


Bottom Line: Moderation and sensible living pays off! Avoid chemicals and synthetic foods.



(December 2011)

December’s Spotlight Festival, Movie & Book

Posted by Carten Cordell / Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Courtesy of Harpercollins/It Books

Sugarloaf Crafts Festival
Head out to the Dulles Expo Center from Dec. 9-11 to pick up handmade pottery, Christmas gifts and statement jewelry at Chantilly’s mega crafts festival. The event also includes live demonstrations from artists and special guest entertainers.

‘We Bought A Zoo’
Based on the true story of Benjamin Mee, single dad Matt Damon attempts to piece his family back together by purchasing a zoo in this family flick, hitting theaters on Dec. 23.

‘Tiny Book of Tiny Stories: Volume 1’
Actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt spearheaded the “Tiny Book” project, partnering with It Book and hitRECord, in which online submissions were selected, edited and compiled by Gordon-Levitt. The final collection hits bookshelves in December.

-Lorin Drinkard
(December 2011)

This Month in History

Dec. 1, 1878: The first telephone in the White House was installed.
Dec. 2, 1859: John Brown is hanged for his role in Harper’s Ferry raid.
Dec. 4, 1992: Bush orders troops to Somalia.
Dec. 6, 1884: The Washington Monument was completed.
Dec. 9, 2009: AOL declares an IPO the same day it ceases Time Warner partnership.
Dec. 14, 1799: George Washington died.
Dec. 16, 1960: Two airplanes collide, mid-air, over NYC.
Dec. 18, 1865: Slavery is abolished in the U.S.
Dec. 20, 1783: Virginia cedes western land to the government.
Dec. 23, 1888: Van Gogh chops off his ear.
Dec. 25, 1776: George Washington crosses the Delaware.
Dec. 28, 1981: Elizabeth Jordan Carr born in Norfolk, 1st American test tube baby.
Dec. 30, 1922: The U.S.S.R. is established.
Dec. 31, 1978: U.S. ends relations with Nationalist China.

-Lynn Norusis
Sources: Encyclopedia Virginia,, History Channel
(December 2011)

Jean Louis Palladin Tribute Menu and Cookbooks

Posted by The Editorial Desk / Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

It’s now officially the holiday season, with Christmas less than one month away. Need a gift idea?

Jean Louis Palladin cookbooks are now available for sale at MICHEL in Tysons Corner. The cookbook was originally published in 1989, with recipes that revolutionized the way chefs and food lovers viewed fine dining in America, and is now out-of-print. The book includes photographs by world-renowned photographer Fred Maroon and a limited quantity will be on sale for the whole month of December.

The Jean Louis Palladin cookbooks are $50 each and 100 percent of the proceeds will be donated to the James Beard Foundation so you can help support the mission to celebrate, nurture and preserve America’s diverse culinary heritage and future. Both Jean Louis Palladin and Michel Richard have received the James Beard Outstanding Chef Award.

And in collaboration with the cookbook deal, MICHEL will serve a Jean Louis Palladin tribute menu from December 6-10. Michel Richard honors the legendary chef with a six-course prix-fixe menu, featuring: Quail Eggs with Smoked Salmon in Brioche; Chestnut Soup; Terrine of Foie Gras with  Black Truffle Tricolor Pasta, Prosciutto and Fresh Herb Tomato Sauce; Fricassee of Snail with Crispy Sweet Breads, Mirepoix, Chanterelle Mushroom and Shallot Sauce; Roasted Duck Breast with Date Puree and Date Sauce; Chocolate Pasta with Mocha Sauce and White Chocolate Curls and Petits Fours.

And, of course, Jean Louis’ famous Brioche with Anchovy Butter will be served with the meal. After the tribute menu’s completion on December 10, special items from the menu will remain on the regular a la carte dinner menu through the rest of December.

The Jean Louis Palladin tribute menu is $150 per person and is available from 5:30-10 p.m. Tuesday, December 6-Sunday, December 10.

MICHEL by Michel Richard is located at The Ritz-Carlton in Tysons Galleria (1700 Tysons Blvd., McLean; 703-506-4300;

-Julia Harbo

Seven Bits of Shopping News

Posted by The Editorial Desk / Monday, November 28th, 2011

Hello, shoppers! Have I got news for you — a fabulous book signing, an open house with wondrous giveaways, an exclusive bridal trunk show, a jewelry trunk show/sale, savings on Santa pics and more!

On Thursday, Dec. 1, from 6-8 p.m., Vienna’s totally amazing Trousseau will host a book-signing event along with professional bra fittings by Chantelle Lingerie experts, champagne and hors d’oeuvres. Ali Cudby, author of “Busted! The Fab Foundations Guide to Bras That Fit, Flatter and Feel Fantastic” will be  the featured author. RSVP to

On Saturday, Dec. 3, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Details Boutique in Haymarket will host a Holiday Open House. Go for the bubbly and bites; stay for the awesome swag! Giveaways have been generously provided by The John Medeiros Collection, Spinning Jewelry, Spartina 449, Kameleon Jewelry, Vera Bradley, Scarlett Robin and Brighton. Also, Blend Couture will create Custom Lipstick Bars for guests. RSVPs (include name and number of people) are not required, but are welcomed by Dec. 1 to

Calling all blushing brides — Gainesville’s Blush Bridal Boutique will host a Justin Alexander Trunk Show from Friday, Dec. 9, through Sunday, Dec. 11. Shop Justin Alexander’s Spring 2012 line before it hits stores. The couture line is famous for its sweeping ball gowns, mermaid styles, ruffles, lace, beading, sweetheart necklines, fitted bodices, dramatic and flowing skirts, texture, delicate details, sheer bolero jackets, crystal-embellished belts and elegant sashes.

Justin Alexander

One of the gorgeous Justin Alexander gowns to be featured in the trunk show at Blush Bridal Boutique Dec. 9-11. (Photo courtesy of Blush Bridal Boutique)

Also on Saturday, Dec. 10, from noon to 4 p.m., BeautyFull Boutique in Alexandria will be hosting a Jewelry Trunk Show & Sale featuring local jewelry designers and vendors including Nicky B’s, Ellen Young and others. Light refreshments will also be served. Register here.

Speaking of stellar locally designed jewels, on Saturdays Dec. 10 and 17 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays Dec. 11 and 18 from noon to 5 p.m., Queen Bee Designs will host their Holiday Hive Trunk Show & Sale! If you can’t make that, they’re hosting a Mid-Week Open House where Early Bird/Mommy Shopping is every morning all week from Dec. 12 – 16 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Working Ladies/Socialite Shopping Weekends are Dec. 12-15 from 5-9 p.m. All jewelry and accessories will be offered at wholesale prices (up to 50 percent off)!

And even Santa loves a sale! From now until next Wednesday, Dec. 7, get $3 off photo packages and a free gift when you visit Santa in the Fashion Court at Tysons Corner. See prices here and Santa’s hours here. Santa will be at Tysons until Dec. 24.

Happy shopping!

–Lexie Ramage

PS. Check back soon for Natalie’s Cyber Monday Spectacular!