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Nutritionist Marcella Gilbert reviews Tanka Dogs
By Mark K. Tilsen, assistant director of marketing

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In the spring, we had an extensive interview with Marcella Gilbert, nutritionist with Whirling Thunder Wellness Program, Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska (photo at right). We covered a lot of ground from cultural preservation to ideas about diabetes prevention in Indian Country. When we parted, we gave her some of our new buffalo Tanka Dogs to see what she thought of them. This is her review:

Tanka Dogs

The American hot dog, an integral part of the American landscape, has been around long before the first lost European set foot on any "new lands." However, for "Americans," the hot dog is considered to represent wholesome American themes, such as family picnics with happy hot dog-toting children and, of course, baseball and now all other sports events.

As the food industry dictates food consumption and expense to their benefit, the American people are subject to less wholesome nutritious food choices. Unfortunately, the all-American hot dog has become one of the worst fast foods available, certainly less wholesome and nutritious. The family picnic changes into a picture of an overweight child sitting in an armchair playing video games while wolfing a hot dog along with chips and a (soda).

Food in America has turned into something of a drug; many Americans carry extra pounds due to addictions to foods rather than satisfying a normal hunger. Finding foods that meet Americans' requirements of being fast, healthy, tasty, and inexpensive can be a challenge. Fortunately, it is not impossible. By using natural foods from wholesome beginnings, the hot dog can be made to meet the American requirements of a fast food nation.

Tanka Dogs are made with free range-grazing buffalo and brown rice sugar, no preservatives or fillers are added. The nutritional value of buffalo has long been exposed to the American diet and of course Native Americans have known the value of buffalo meat beyond 1492. A low-fat, protein-rich, flavorful hot dog is once again available to revitalize the wholesome picture of the family outing without the extra pounds.

Marcella Gilbert, biographical information:
Current employer: Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska, Whirling Thunder Wellness Program
Education: Masters of science in nutrition from SDSU
Tribal affiliation: Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe

For more of Marcella Gilbert's perspective on Native American health and culture: The diabetes epidemic in Indian Country

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Previous Comments

A. Dixon Keahna on Sun Dec 20, 2009 20:0:39
Miss Gilbert, Nutriotionist.
Hello, hope when you receive my email you are in good tidings. I think the more information our Native American Community receives, regardless what part of the USA, I think the data would be very helpful. I want to congratulate you for obtaining that Master's in your chosen professional career. Your reply with the Diabetes information to our church, the Anawim Center would be awesome. I still have that picture from SDSU 17th annual pow wow in Brookings. Also have a nice and prosperous Christmas and New Years. When you see Miss DeCora, Dawn, tell her and her family Happy Holidays.

Yours Truly In Brotherhood and Christ,

A. Dixon Keahna
Anawim Center of Chicago
Young Adult Ministry Director

Sr. Patricia Mulkie, OSF

p,s, To save postage cost, I will share the data on diabetes with my associates of the American Indian Health Services.