On July 29, 2009, MSUD families and patients of the Clinic for Special Children came from all over central Pennsylvania for a day of nutrition education and cooking workshops led by parents and Applied Nutrition staff.

The program began with Brenda Wenger, mom of Karen and Rachel, providing a step-by-step demonstration of low protein bread recipes. Brenda’s creativity in the kitchen resulted in a variety of items including loaf bread for sandwiches, low protein breadsticks, cinnamon sticks, donuts and dinner rolls. She explained some tricks of the trade, like adding extra wheat starch on a humid summer day to combat the moisture in the air.

Applied Nutrition’s Bridget Wardley, MS, RD, Director of Nutrition and Erica Novack, demonstrated how Maddy’s Homestyle low protein baked goods can be both nutritious and delicious. They made Double Banana Muffins, Thumbprint Cookies and Fruit Pizza. Their presentation included many interesting points about health and nutrition. As an example, using canola oil in the recipe for Maddy’s low protein muffins can boost intake of omega-3 fatty acids by up to 1/3 of daily needs.

This event would not have been possible with out the help of Glenda Groff, mom of Jordan. She taught the group how to make low protein egg rolls and onion rice casserole. Lorraine Martin, mother of Crystal, shared her expertise on how to make chocolate sandwich cookies. All the dishes were served as part of the main dinner and were a huge hit.

While Glenda and Lorraine shared their recipes with the adults, Sandy Simons, MA, RD, CHES, along with Maureen Finkel and Dana Corby from Applied Nutrition led a group of creative young chefs in a culinary challenge to create new low protein recipes using only the food supplied specifically for the event. There were 3 judges, Dr. Rider, Glenda Groff and Bridget Wardley, who tasted and judged each dish based on appearance, taste, originality and of course, leucine content!

The evening portion of the event featured talks by the three doctors from The Clinic for Special Children: Dr. Morton, Dr. Rider, and Dr. Strauss. Dr. Morton spoke first, noting that the MSUD population is getting older and that the clinic now sees more healthy teens and adults with MSUD then ever before. To address this increasing population, Dr. Rider joined the Clinic for Special Children’s team a year ago. He will make sure the clinic continues to be the ‘medical home’ for teens and adults with MSUD.

Dr. Strauss discussed how the need for an improved MSUD infant formula led to the collaboration with Applied Nutrition to create a more nutritious MSUD formula. He took this opportunity to share his research on the new infant formula, still in the developmental stage, and the improved nutrition and health status of the infants in the study. His most dramatic slide showed a significant decrease in hospital admissions and stays for those using the new product. Although the infant product is not yet commercially available, the research used to design the infant formula was used to create the Complex MSD Essential formula that was launched last year.

Over 120 people attended the event and had a fun time sharing ideas, recipes and learning how to be more creative in low protein cooking. Thank you to everyone who attended and contributed to help make this event a success!

Sponsored by:

Sandy Simons, MA, RD, LDN, CHES
Director of Events & Marketing
Applied Nutrition Corp.


The MSUD Family Support Group is currently funding several research projects and we are proactively looking for researchers interested in developing new treatments or finding a cure for MSUD. Significant funding is necessary if we are to accomplish this goal.
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