6 Very Healthy Foods You Should be Eating Regularly

Uncategorized

Most trendy diets share a list of off-limit foods, which can range from beans and dairy to whole grains and sugar. However, there are some foods considered so nutritious they make practically any approved list. Thinking in those terms can be more helpful for reaching health goals. “Thinking about what you can’t have feels restrictive. But shifting your perspective to what you can add in is a healthier mindset,” says Jill Keene, a registered dietitian nutritionist and certified personal trainer in New York City.

Google anything from keto to Paleo to Mediterranean and the biggest thing you’ll see is a push to focus on fresh, whole foods. “The big-three types of foods that can make up most any diet are lean proteinshealthy fats and vegetables,” says Keene.

Here are six go-to foods you’ll find on any approved list:

The Mediterranean diet is rich in leafy greens (spinach, kale, chard, dandelion greens) and for good reason: Not only are they a non-starchy veggie (ideal for very low-carb diets), but they’re full of important vitamins and minerals like vitamins C, A and K, as well as iron.

Try them in a breakfast skilletsmoothie or meal-worthy salad.

Whether you’re on a high-, moderate- or low-fat plan, nutritionists advise honing in on healthy fats. Avocado fits the bill, as it’s rich in monounsaturated fats (MUFAs) that are associated with cardiovascular health, says Keene. Plus, it’s a surprisingly rich source of GI-friendly fiber. One half of the fruit packs nearly seven grams.

Try using it in everything from chicken salad to sweet potato toast and even brownies.

Salmon is one of the top sources of omega-3’s, fatty acids that benefit the heart by slowing accumulation of plaque that gums up arteries and better lipid profiles and blood pressure, according to the American Heart Association. The AHA recommends consuming two fatty-fish meals per week.

Use it in a breakfast salad or roasted for a quick weeknight dinner.

People who regularly consume nuts are less likely to gain weight over a five-year period or be overweight or obese, according to a study in the European Journal of Nutrition. Walnuts are particularly special because they contain a type of omega-3 called alpha-linoleic acid (ALA). They’re also a good way to eat more fiber and are rich in magnesium, which plays a key role in more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body.

In the era of coconut everything, olive oil is an important staple in some of the top-ranked diets including DASH and the Mediterranean diet. Incorporating it in your diet as one of your go-to healthy fats pays off: Research shows people who do so may lose weight and reduce belly fat.

Use it to cook veggiespasta and soup.

As a source of natural sugar, people remain weary that eating berries may cause weight gain. The reality is that, in moderation, fruit — especially berries — can add a source of satisfying, subtle sweetness to any eating plan. Raspberries, blackberries, blueberries and strawberries are rich in disease-fighting polyphenols and are lower-carb.

Try them as an oatmeal or yogurt topping, snack or dessert.
(Source: MyFitnessPal.com)

Is it OK to Eat Deli Meat?

Food & Nutrition

Is it OK to Eat Deli Meat?

Sandwiches are a lunchtime staple and it’s easy to make healthy high-protein versions of your favorites, like turkey or steak. However, deli meat often gets a bad rap for being highly processed (which ups the sodium content). Still, “cold cuts can definitely fit into a well-balanced diet, but the frequency may depend on the type,” says Keri Gans, RD, author of “The Small Change Diet.”

Here, a look at how different cold cuts compare nutritionally, why sodium content matters and how to make a healthy sandwich that helps you reach your health goals.


As you can see, turkey, ham and roast beef run pretty similar in terms of calories, fat and sodium. It’s salami that is markedly higher in fat (including saturated fat) and sodium.

THE SODIUM DILEMMA

“The problem with many deli meats is they are very high in sodium, and for salt-sensitive individuals, this may increase their risk for high blood pressure and heart disease,” says Gans. Even if you’re not particularly worried about salt, think about how you feel after eating a sandwich packed with cold cuts. “For some people, very high-sodium foods can cause bloating, which leads to GI discomfort,” she adds.

Cold cuts are among the top 10 sources of sodium in the American diet, reports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Consider that the recommendations are to limit your sodium intake to 2,300mg per day. If you’re eating a sandwich with bread, deli meat, cheese and mustard, you may get 1,500mg of sodium in a single meal, says the CDC — and that’s before sides like chips and a pickle.

ARE PRESERVATIVES A PROBLEM?

Deli meat often contains nitrates or nitrites, which are added as preservatives to keep slices fresh. A report from the American Institute of Cancer Research and the World Cancer Research Fund says there’s evidence consuming processed meats daily increases the risk of colorectal cancer. It’s less clear, however, if it’s the nitrates specifically or because of other factors such as lifestyle. “More research is needed, but, in moderation, deli meat is safe,” says Gans.

TIPS FOR EATING DELI MEAT

If you eat a lot of deli meat, look for those free of added nitrates or nitrites. Applegate is one example; major brands also have lines free of these preservatives, says Gans.

Most people should also opt for cold cuts that are lower in sodium (you can look for low-sodium or reduced-sodium on the label). If you have a sandwich, it’s also a good idea to cut back on saltier foods for the remainder of the day.

Choose wisely: “Turkey, ham or roast beef are better choices than salami, bologna or pastrami, because they are lower in sodium, calories and fat,” says Gans. “Fresh roasted” is another buzzword to look for at the deli counter, she says. “These may include fewer preservatives, and thus, less sodium.”

HOW TO BUILD A HEALTHY SANDWICH

Gans advises using four slices of deli meat, max. “Build bulk by adding veggies, not more meat,” she says. Along with the standard lettuce and tomato, consider piling on cucumbers or sliced carrots for crunch or using grilled veggies as toppings. Avocado or hummus can replace mayo or cheese as a spread, which adds healthy monounsaturated fats.

You can also cut down on sodium by using one piece of bread and making it open-faced. Or, try placing a couple pieces of turkey between two slices of bell peppers as the “bread,” or roll it up in hearty greens like kale or collards.

Source: My Fitness Pal

Workout Wednesday: 10 WAYS TO MAKE FITNESS AND NUTRITION A PRIORITY

fitness, Food & Nutrition, Workout Wednesday

10 Ways to Make Fitness and Nutrition a Priority

10 Ways to Make Fitness and Nutrition a Priority

If you feel stuck in a rut and have no idea how to get back on track with your fitness and nutrition goals, you’re not alone. I totally get you, and I know it’s a hard spot to be in when you desperately want change. Rationally, you know you need to get back on track, but it feels too overwhelming or that “everything else” is getting in the way of you feeling good again.

Shifting your mindset when you are feeling unmotivated and in a fitness or weight loss plateau is tough, and it may just take some soul searching mixed with a little strategery to get you back on track. Here are our best tips for getting unstuck and making fitness and nutrition a priority, again.

1
LOSE THE JUDGMENT

Saying “I am” is a powerful phrase and can be used for good or bad. This is because “I am” is linked to your identity. It’s important first and foremost to separate any negative unhealthy behaviors from “I am” statements that define you. No, you are not lazy, unmotivated, stuck or a slacker. Maybe your actions are resulting in you feeling these things, but making that mindset shift to separate actions from identity can be a powerful tool. You feel stuck, you feel lazy, you feel unmotivated, you feel like a slacker. You absolutely have the power to change those feelings — and they do not define you.

2
CREATE SPACE

We’re talking about giving yourself space for soul searching. Maybe that’s going on a walk or sitting outside or at a coffee shop to clear your head enough to ask yourself questions about where you are on your health journey. Maybe start with “I feel unmotivated or stuck (or fill in the blank) because … “ and see what comes up for you.

Take this a step further and journal it on paper. Allow yourself to write freely without judgment or overthinking. Free writing doesn’t even have to make sense, but truly the answers to whatever problem you are facing with your motivation are within you. You just need to create enough space to ask the right questions. What would it look like to make your change? What would happen if you didn’t do it? Does it provide a breath of fresh air, create clarity or make you more inspired?

3
DEFINE YOUR WHY

Do you have kids or grandkids? Setting a healthy example is a big priority for many parents as well as living a long and healthy life to enjoy your little ones and their little ones. Handed a few bad genes? Many people eat well and exercise regularly because they want to reverse or prevent diseases that could be influenced by lifestyle factors such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, cancer, depression and the list goes on.

Know the reason why you want to make a change (and write it down, save it to your phone’s lock screen or tape it to your mirror or fridge) to keep you centered and channel those positive vibes and motivation.

4
BLOCK TIME

This is a great strategy for those who need routine and thrive on daily schedules. Plan your week on a Sunday to determine when, where and how you can get movement in, or make a list of simple dinner ideas for the week. Go ahead and pre-book your workouts if you have to check in at a studio or group fitness class. To create that routine and build momentum, you may find it’s easier to stick to if you set time aside every day for your health, by either committing to the routine of “sweating daily” in any form or by carving out time, at the same time, every day. Maybe you set aside two hours on a Sunday to grocery shop or meal prep. Developing a pattern builds a healthy momentum and flow to help your habits stick.

5
NAME YOUR TOP 3

In the morning, or even better the night before, look at your “to do’s” for the next day and pull out your top 3, making 1–2 of them personal dos that accomplish your health priorities. Ask yourself, if nothing else gets done today/tomorrow, what would make me feel proud of myself? Put at least one of those responses in your top 3 list and at the end of the day when you’ve checked it off, your confidence will get a nice boost.

6
TAKE A SANITY BREAK

We all need sanity breaks in our day, so take time to sit outside to eat your lunch or go to that barre class during your lunch break. Maybe you’re a morning person and working out first thing and refueling with a balanced breakfast sets the tone for your entire day. If nighttime is more your style (or fits your schedule better), get that workout in before you head home or prioritize it for after you tuck the kids into bed. Eating well and moving daily influences mental health — when we take care of our body we feel less anxious, more confident and better overall.

7
INVOLVE THE KIDS

Hey, maybe you feel stuck because you simply have no “me time.” If you are a stay at home or work from home parent, or work too many hours at the office and you find yourself choosing to workout or spend time with your kiddos, maybe you just need to involve the kids in your workout. If you have little ones, push them in the jogging stroller or go to a park and they can sit in the stroller while you do your weights workout, or use them as the weights while you do squats or push press. The whole family will benefit from involving the kids in your workout. Same goes for healthy eating, you may feel that it’s hard to eat well because the kids won’t eat the same healthy meal. Get them involved in the grocery shopping and meal prep because eventually (with practice and patience) they will catch on to your family’s new style of eating.

8
PUT MONEY ON THE LINE

Spa day, vacation, new outfit? Pick something that you’d like to work towards, and save 5, 10 or 20 dollars every time you do a workout. If you and your partner want to plan a little getaway, instead of booking it right way, create a challenge to work together by working out toward that vacation.

9
COMMIT TO THE FIRST STEP

Think about the first thing you have to do to achieve your health goal. With working out, commit to putting on your workout clothes, shoes and filling up your water bottle. Rarely do you do these things and then sit on the sofa. With healthy eating, commit to putting dinner in the crockpot in the morning, making smoothie bags or overnight oats for faster breakfasts, or going to the grocery store to have healthy ingredients on hand to eat well all week long.

10
FIND YOUR TRIBE

From social media challenges and healthy living groups, health challenge groups in apps and group fitness classes, to following healthy living influencers on social — there are ways to stay motivated and inspired all around us.

Source: KRISTINA LARUE, RD, CSSD, LDN

8 Healthy Summer Foods to Add to Your Diet

Food & Nutrition, recipes
It’s summer—that amazing time of year when fresh produce abounds. Better yet: many of summer’s fruits and vegetables are brimming with secret health benefits.
Corn

1. Corn

Nothing says summer like fresh sweet corn. And did you know that two antioxidants—lutein and zeaxanthin—in corn may act like natural sunglasses, helping to form macular pigment that filters out some of the sun’s damaging rays? It’s true. The same antioxidants may also help lower your risk of developing age-related macular degeneration—the leading cause of blindness in people over the age of 60 (though much of the damage occurs decades earlier).

Iced Coffee

Pictured Recipe: EatingWell Frozen Mochaccino

2. Iced Coffee

An iced pick-me-up is a great way to start your summer mornings. Better yet: drinking a single cup of coffee daily may lower your risk of developing skin cancer. In one study of more than 93,000 women, published in the European Journal of Cancer Prevention, those who drank one cup of caffeinated coffee a day reduced their risk of developing nonmelanoma skin cancer by about 10 percent. And the more they drank—up to about 6 cups or so per day—the lower their risk. Decaf didn’t seem to offer the same protection.

Tart Cherries

3. Tart Cherries

They deliver a host of health benefits. You may have heard that drinking tart cherry juice can help you get a better night’s sleep and quell post-workout pain (read more about that here). But did you know that compounds in tart cherries may also help you slim down and get leaner? When scientists at the University of Michigan Health System put rats on a high-fat diet supplemented with either a tart-cherry powder (equal to 1% of the weight of their total diet) or the same number of calories from carbohydrate, those that got the cherry powder gained less weight and body fat. Why? The anthocyanins in tart cherries activate a molecule that helps rev up fat burning and decrease fat storage.

Tomatoes

4. Tomatoes

There’s no question that sunscreen should be your first line of defense against the blazing summer sun. But eating tomatoes could give you a little extra protection: consuming more lycopene—the carotenoid that makes tomatoes red—may protect your skin from sunburn. In one study, participants who were exposed to UV light had almost 50 percent less skin reddening after they ate 2 1/2 tablespoons of tomato paste (or drank about 1 2/3 cups of carrot juice daily), in addition to their regular diet, for 10 to 12 weeks. Supplements, however, weren’t as effective: in the same study, those who received a lycopene supplement or synthetic lycopene weren’t significantly protected against sunburn.

5. Watermelon

5. Watermelon

Staying hydrated keeps your memory sharp and your mood stable. It also helps keep your body cool (by sweating) during hot summer months. The good news is that you don’t just have to drink water. You can eat it, too: in addition to delivering skin-protecting lycopene, watermelon is 92 percent water (hence the name). Another boon? Research shows that eating foods that are full of water helps keep you satisfied on fewer calories. (Interestingly enough, drinking water alongside foods doesn’t have the same effect.)

Raspberries

6. Raspberries

Raspberries are a great source of fiber—some of it soluble in the form of pectin, which helps lower cholesterol. One cup of raspberries has 8 grams of fiber—and a study in the Journal of Nutrition suggests that eating more fiber may help prevent weight gain or even promote weight loss. Over the course of a two-year study, researchers found that when study participants boosted their fiber by 8 grams for every 1,000 calories, they lost about 4 1/2 pounds. Try it for yourself. If you’re consuming 2,000 calories per day, aim to increase your fiber by 16 grams

Iced Tea

7. Iced Tea

Sure, a tall glass of iced tea on a hot day is refreshing, but did you know it might also do your body good? Studies show if you drink tea regularly, you may lower your risk of Alzheimer’s and diabetes, plus have healthier teeth and gums and stronger bones. How? Tea is rich in a class of antioxidants called flavonoids. Regardless of the variety—black, green, oolong, white or herbal—maximize the power of tea’s flavonoids by drinking it freshly brewed. If you want to keep a batch of cold tea in your refrigerator, “add a little lemon juice,” recommends Jeffrey Blumberg, Ph.D., director of the Antioxidants Research Laboratory at the USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University in Boston. The citric acid and vitamin C in that squeeze of lemon—or lime, or orange—help preserve the flavonoids.

Blueberries

8. Blueberries

Fresh blueberries straight from the berry patch are a special treat! Turns out the antioxidants in them may help ward off muscle fatigue by mopping up the additional free radicals that muscles produce during exercise, according to recent research out of New Zealand.

Source: —Brierley Wright, M.S., R.D.

Your Body When You Overeat

Fitness on a Budget, Food & Nutrition, Motivation, Inspiration and Encouragement, Uncategorized

I know I’m not the only one who struggles to walk past the free break room donuts. When I was younger I would joke about how a “food coma,” the dreaded side effect of overeating, was my favorite part of social events. Now, I actively avoid it because learning my limits was key for getting me into my favorite skinny jeans again.

Since overeating is a concept that most of us understand and experienced first-hand, I wanted to break down what actually happens in your body when you do overeat. After all, your body is well-equipped to let you know you’re getting fuller — you just need to listen!

Note: While the digestion process can take on average of 50+ hours, for this article, we are going to stick with the earlier parts of the process.

BY MEGAN MEYER, PHD

Three Easy Ways to Reduce Sugar Cravings

Food & Nutrition, Uncategorized

Most of us have experienced intense sugar cravings at one point in time — and we can all agree that once a sugar craving hits, it can be tough to ignore. Unfortunately, the key to reducing sugar cravings is actually eating less of the sweet stuff. While some may prefer to go cold turkey and completely stop consuming added sugar, many of us find this approach unrealistic and unsustainable in the long run.

For those wanting a less restrictive approach, here are three easy tips to reduce sugar cravings for good.

1. DRINK PLENTY OF WATER

Dehydration often masks itself as hunger — particularly in the form of sugar cravings. This is because even mild dehydration can make it difficult for our body to tap into energy stores, particularly glycogen, the body’s main storage form for carbohydrates. When your body can’t access simple carbs quickly — especially after exercise — your cravings for them increase, often in the form of a sugar desire.

Hydration Tips:

  • Down a minimum of 64 fluid ounces (8 cups) of water daily. Split it up by drinking 32 ounces (4 cups) before lunch and another 32 ounces before dinner is over.
  • The next time a sugar craving strikes, drink a tall glass of water and wait 15–20 minutes. Your craving might just disappear.

2. CUT BACK ON ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS

2013 study at Yale University suggested the brain is not easily fooled by artificial sweeteners in lieu of sugar-sweetened foods and beverages. The study looked at a specific brain signal involved in choosing between real sugar and no- or low-calorie sweeteners — a signal that regulates dopamine levels which, in turn, mediates pleasure in the brain. Not surprisingly, the brain finds greater reward from real sugar than it does from artificial sweeteners. These findings suggest frequent consumption of artificially sweetened food and drinks, particularly when we’re hungry or overtired, may lead to greater future consumption of higher sugar- and calorie-laden alternatives as the brain seeks that reward.

Tips to Cut Out the Imposters:

  • Instead of diet soda, reach for a club soda with a splash of fruit juice.
  • Use half the amount of artificial sweetener you usually add to your coffee, and continue to cut back over time.


3. GRADUALLY EASE UP ON SWEETS

Gradually reducing the amount of sugar you consume can be an effective approach in reducing cravings. It may take a bit longer to feel the difference, but when you gradually reduce sugar intake, you don’t endure the physical side effects and feelings of deprivation associated with cold-turkey withdrawal. Making just two or three of the following small changes can make a big difference in reducing sugar consumption and curbing cravings.

Ideas for Cutting Back:

  • Order lattes and other sweetened coffee drinks with half the amount of sweetener.
  • Prevent overeating by pre-portioning sweets and other packaged foods that list sugar (or one of its many nicknames) within the first five ingredients.
  • Mix plain yogurt into your usual sweetened yogurt.
  • Dilute soda and juice with club soda or plain water.
  • Pair sweets, like chocolate, with nutritious foods rather than eating them alone. (Think: apple slices topped with peanut butter and chocolate chips.)
  • Reduce the amount of sugar in recipes by 1/3 or up to 1/2.

BY ELLE PENNER, MPH, RD

12 Slow-Cooked Meat-Lover Meals Under 450 Calories

Fitness on a Budget, Food & Nutrition, recipes, Uncategorized
    12 Slow-Cooked Meat-Lover Meals Under 450 Calories

Coming home after a tiring workday? Waking up late on a lazy Sunday morning? Some days you want nothing more than a hot, nourishing meal waiting for you at the table. That’s why we’ve gathered 12 meaty slow-cooker meals, bursting with flavor and protein, that let you just set it and forget it!

1. CROCK-POT BUFFALO CHICKEN LETTUCE WRAPS | SKINNYTASTE

All the flavors of Buffalo wings without all the added fat and calories? Sign us up! Try these at your next tailgating party. They’re so tasty, your guests won’t even miss the real deal. Recipe makes 6 servings at 1/2 cup chicken and veggies each.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 148; Total Fat: 2g; Saturated Fat: 1g; Monounsaturated Fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 56mg; Sodium: 879mg; Carbohydrate: 5g; Dietary Fiber: 2g; Sugar: 2g; Protein: 25g

2. SLOW COOKER COCONUT CURRY CHICKEN | BOYS AHOY

One taste of this spiced coconut curry chicken will leave your mouth craving more. Onions, carrots and bell peppers bulk up this easy recipe. To soak up the creamy curry sauce, serve with whole-grain rice, naan or noodles. If you’re a fan of heat, kick it up a notch with diced chili peppers or hot sauce. Recipe makes 6 servings.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 366; Total Fat: 14g; Saturated Fat: 12g; Monounsaturated Fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 75mg; Sodium: 769mg; Carbohydrate: 24g; Dietary Fiber: 5g; Sugar: 11g; Protein: 38g

3. SLOW-COOKER LATIN CHICKEN WITH BLACK BEANS AND SWEET POTATOES | DELISH

Got 15 minutes in the morning? Prep this quick Latin chicken, and come home to spicy and smoky aromas wafting from your kitchen. This dish contains sweet potatoes and black beans, which provide a substantial amount of your daily fiber needs, at 7 grams per serving. Recipe makes 6 servings.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 449; Total Fat: 14g; Saturated Fat: 5g; Monounsaturated Fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 2mg; Sodium: 369mg; Carbohydrate: 36g; Dietary Fiber: 7g; Sugar: 8g; Protein: 43g

4. SLOW COOKER IRISH BEEF STEW | COOK SMARTS

Simmer budget-friendly beef stew meats to tender, fall-apart perfection using your slow cooker. The trick is to tenderize the beef before cooking, then let it stew slowly using the gentle heat from your slow cooker. It’s hard to be patient when your home smells so delicious, but, trust us, it’s worth the wait. Recipe makes 4 servings at 2 cups each.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 363; Total Fat: 11g; Saturated Fat: 3g; Monounsaturated Fat: 2g; Cholesterol: 9mg; Sodium: 582mg; Carbohydrate: 35g; Dietary Fiber: 6g; Sugar: 7g; Protein: 27g

5. SLOW-COOKER PORK SLIDERS | MYFITNESSPAL’S ORIGINAL RECIPES

Slide these comforting Cuban sliders into your lunch box! This recipe uses lean pork shoulder simmered in a sweet, citrusy broth made from fresh orange and lime. Serve the meat on one whole-grain slider bun with a slice of Swiss cheese and some pickles for a complete meal. Recipe makes 8 servings at 1 slider each.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 415; Total Fat: 17g; Saturated Fat: 5g; Monounsaturated Fat: 8g; Cholesterol: 133mg; Sodium: 890mg; Carbohydrate: 21g; Dietary Fiber: 3g; Sugar: 6g; Protein: 43g

6. SLOW COOKER BARBACOA SHORT BEEF RIB TACOS | CAFE DELITES

Tender, juicy meat falling off the bone, rich in barbacoa flavors, is a surefire sign of a satisfying meal. Once you’re ready to eat, set up a taco station with bowls of cilantro, onion and avocado because — let’s be honest — garnishes make tacos extra delectable. Recipe makes 12 servings at 1 taco each.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 363; Total Fat: 19g; Saturated Fat: 8g; Monounsaturated Fat: 8g; Cholesterol: 88mg; Sodium: 559mg; Carbohydrate: 15g; Dietary Fiber: 1g; Sugar: 3g; Protein: 30g

7. SLOW COOKER TURKEY CHILI | SKINNYTASTE

This mild, kid-friendly chili is made with lean ground turkey, corn, bell peppers, tomatoes and spices. Top with with crunchy baked tortilla chips, and watch your little ones gobble it up. This chili can also be made in large batches for freezing and reheating. Recipe makes 5 servings at 1 cup each.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 222; Total Fat: 3g; Saturated Fat: 0g; Monounsaturated Fat: 1g; Cholesterol: 74mg; Sodium: 719mg; Total Carbohydrates: 20g; Dietary Fiber: 3g; Sugars: 7g; Protein: 32g

8. CROCK POT CHICKEN TACOS | THE COZY COOK

Cumin-and-garlic-infused chicken gently simmers with black beans and corn for a nutritious, no-fuss Mexican-inspired dinner the whole family will enjoy. Recipe makes 8 servings at 1 flour tortilla + 1/8 filling each.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 376; Total Fat: 14g; Saturated Fat: 7g; Monounsaturated Fat: 3g; Cholesterol: 69mg; Sodium: 656mg; Carbohydrate: 42g; Dietary Fiber: 8g; Sugar: 3g; Protein: 25g

9. SLOW COOKER TACO MEAT | COUPON CLIPPING COOK

Slow-cooked and saucy, this taco meat is brimming with seasonings — from oregano and cumin to garlic and chili powder — for maximum taste bud satisfaction. This is a recipe that’ll have you wanting to lick your fingers clean! Recipe makes 8 servings at 2 crispy taco shells + 1/8 filling each.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 406; Total Fat: 22g; Saturated Fat: 8g; Monounsaturated Fat: 5g; Cholesterol: 71mg; Sodium: 255mg; Carbohydrate: 28g; Dietary Fiber: 6g; Sugar: 3g; Protein: 24g

10. EASY SLOW COOKER CHICKEN CHILI | HEALTHY NIBBLES & BITS

Come home to a warm, nourishing bowl of stew that soothes the soul — without needing to actually cook. This easy chicken chili takes only 10 minutes of prep time — your slow cooker handles the rest. By the time you get home, you’ll have a chunky chili packed with chicken, beans and veggies in addition to an entire house filled with inviting, savory aromas! Recipe makes 8 servings at 1 1/2 cups each.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 248; Total Fat: 2g; Saturated Fat: 0g; Monounsaturated Fat: 1g; Cholesterol: 52mg; Sodium: 390mg; Carbohydrate: 34g; Dietary Fiber: 7g; Sugar: 6g; Protein: 24g

11. SLOW COOKER JERK CHICKEN | THE HEALTHY MAVEN

This recipe for jerk chicken bathes chicken drumsticks in a flavorful jerk spice, slow-cooks it for four hours and quick-broils it for added crispiness. Imagine coming home to that meal! This dish pairs well with rice, beans and/or a side salad for a complete meal. Recipe makes 5 servings at 2 drumsticks each.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 253 ; Total Fat: 12 g; Saturated Fat: 6 g; Monounsaturated Fat: 5 g; Cholesterol: 184mg; Sodium: 376 mg; Carbohydrate: 6 g; Dietary Fiber: 1 g; Sugar: 4 g; Protein 34 g

12. SLOW COOKER ASIAN CHICKEN LETTUCE WRAPS | COOKING CLASSY

Sweet and salty, these Asian chicken lettuce wraps make an easy lunch or dinner with only 15 minutes of prep! Crisp iceberg lettuce makes this dish all the more refreshing and lower in carbs — a double win! Not a fan of lettuce? Serve over a bed of shredded cabbage or mixed greens instead. Recipe makes 6 servings at 2 wraps each.

Nutrition (per serving): Calories: 338; Total Fat: 15g; Saturated Fat: 2g; Monounsaturated Fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 91mg; Sodium: 723mg; Carbohydrate: 32g; Dietary Fiber: 4g; Sugar: 13g; Protein: 34g

 BY MYFITNESSPAL’S RECIPES

8 Food Myths You Need To Stop Believing

Fitness on a Budget, Food & Nutrition, Motivation, Inspiration and Encouragement, recipes, Uncategorized
8 Food Myths You Need To Stop Believing

You can find healthy eating advice on every corner. That doesn’t mean it’s good advice, though. Nutrition research can be confusing, and it’s always changing. Throw in the sensationalistic headlines and the rate at which information is spread, and it’s no wonder the nutrition tips or suggestions you get from your friend are unsound. Best-case scenario, following bad advice means you unnecessarily avoid your favorite foods. Worst-case, you end up choosing the unhealthier option all while thinking you’re making a better choice.

We zeroed in on eight myths about healthy eating that especially need to die.

MYTH #1: EGG YOLKS ARE BAD FOR YOU

Dietary cholesterol has been wrongly accused of raising our blood cholesterol levels for years. It’s become clearer that saturated fats and trans fats are more influential in raising blood cholesterol levels. And while eggs—the yolks included—are high in cholesterol, they are relatively low in saturated fats. Lots of research has been done in recent years, and the verdict is that the entire egg can actually be a part of a healthy diet and in most people, do not significantly impact cholesterol levels or heart disease risk.

MYTH #2: COFFEE IS DEHYDRATING

Yes, coffee is a diuretic (aka, promotes urine production), but it’s an extremely mild one. It also has a lot of water in it and therefore actually counts toward your daily fluid intake. The amount it would take to dehydrate you is more than anyone should be consuming in a day—if you have two or three cups daily, your fluid levels will be completely fine.

MYTH #3: NATURAL SUGAR IS DIFFERENT FROM ADDED SUGAR

Sugar is sugar is sugar. On a molecular level, the sugar in an apple is the same as the sugar you spoon into your coffee cup. There can be a difference in how our bodies break down the sugar when it’s combined with other nutrients like fiber and protein, but simply being natural doesn’t cut it. Sugar in a whole fruit comes with fiber and helps slow digestion and prevent blood sugar spikes. That’s better than sugar that comes void of other nutrients. But when you squeeze out the juice and drink it, or eat maple syrup, agave syrup, or honey, your body reacts the same way it would to table sugar or the sugar in a Coke.

 

MYTH #4: ORGANIC FOOD IS AUTOMATICALLY HEALTHY

The word “organic” comes with a big health halo around it, like everything with the label is automatically good for you. The truth is that organic snacks are still snacks. Eating them in excess isn’t suddenly OK because they meet the requirements for an organic label. “Organic chocolate syrup is still chocolate syrup,” Caroline Kaufman, R.D., tells SELF. Organic cookies, crackers, chips, and candies have the same amount of sugar, fat, and empty calories as non-organic versions. When it comes to produce, choosing organic versions of the “dirty dozen”—the foods that typically have the highest amount of pesticides on them—is a good way to cut back on chemical exposure. But Kaufman adds that conventionally grown produce is still safe to eat, since it’s monitored to ensure pesticide residue stays below a certain limit.

MYTH #5: MARGARINE IS AUTOMATICALLY BETTER THAN BUTTER

Margarine become popular in the fat-is-bad era, but many actually contain trans fats, which are worse for you than the naturally occurring saturated fat in butter. Butter’s ingredient list is short and sweet and doesn’t contain extra ingredients to make up for lack of taste. Not all fake butter is bad, but you have to be cautious about what you’re buying. “I always look at the ingredient list first,” Lori Zanini, R.D., spokesperson for the Association of Nutrition and Dietetics, tells SELF. “Stick margarines are not recommended due to the fact that they contain hydrogenated oils (aka trans fats). Spreads that are in tubs can be considered, just make sure the ingredients are beneficial,” she adds. Look for ones with olive oil to get a good dose of healthy plant-based fat.

MYTH #6: SALADS ARE ALWAYS THE HEALTHIEST OPTION ON THE MENU

You’d think that choosing the salad is safe. But all the add-ons piled atop a bed of lettuce can make the sugar, fat, and calorie count just as high as the mouthwatering burger you’re trying to resist. “Watch out for tricky salad toppings that add up quickly: creamy, bottled dressings; cheese; bacon; croutons; or sweetened, dried fruit,” Zanini says. Other ingredients, like avocado and nuts, are healthy in small amounts but are usually served in too-large portion sizes, Kaufman says. To make sure your salad is as healthy as possible, look for one with leafy greens, lean protein (fried chicken doesn’t count), a small serving of healthy fat, and an oil-based dressing on the side. The oil helps you absorb all the fat-soluble nutrients you’re eating, and keeps you away from caloric creamy dressing.

MYTH #7: LOW-FAT VERSIONS ARE BETTER THAN THE ORIGINALS

If you’re still buying low-fat varieties of naturally fatty foods (I’m looking at you, coffee creamer), you might be doing yourself a disservice. “Fat is a necessary part of a healthy diet. You need fat in your diet. Fat is not bad. Fat does not go directly to your hips,” Kaufman reassures. Any extra calories you eat that your body can’t use can be converted into body fat, not just dietary fat. Fat is more densely caloric, though, which is both a blessing and a curse. “Because fat is so rich in calories, it is also very satisfying. That’s good because ideally it means you could mindfully eator use a small amount to feel full,” says Kaufman. It also means you need to watch your portion sizes. When fat is removed from foods, it’s usually replaced by sugar or salt, so it’s important to read the ingredients list before choosing the adulterated version. Usually, you’re better off eating a small serving of the full-fat kind so you actually enjoy it and feel satiated, Kaufman says.

MYTH #8: EVERYONE WILL BENEFIT FROM GIVING UP GLUTEN

“Eating gluten free is not necessarily healthier if you do not have Celiac disease or a gluten intolerance/sensitivity,” Zanini says. It’s also important to note that not all gluten-free foods are created equally, or healthfully. “Gluten-free breads and baked goods may still use nutrient-poor, refined flours,” she explains. They can also be high in sugar. If you think you might be sensitive to gluten, or have any of the symptoms of Celiac disease, see an R.D. to ask about being tested. If wheat products don’t make you feel crummy, swearing them off isn’t going to make you a healthier person.

Source: by Self

Halloween Top 15 Mini Size Candy Bars

Food & Nutrition, Holiday Fast Track, Uncategorized

Halloween Candy BarsHalloween is a tempting time with literally hundreds of candies out there to buy. While you may have the best intention to pass them out to the kids, sometimes you can’t help but sneak a few in for yourself. We’ve taken a look at some of the most popular candy bars so you can be aware of the calories they could add to your daily plan. Everyone here at CalorieKing wishes you and your family a safe and healthy Halloween!

Halloween Candy Guide – Top 15 Mini Size Bars

Calories Fat (g) Carbs (g)
3 Musketeers, fun size, 3 bars, 1.6 oz 190 6 24
Almond Joy, snack size, 1 bar, 0.6 oz 80 4.5 10
Baby Ruth, fun size, 2 bars, 1.3 oz 170 8 24
Butterfinger, fun size, 1 bar, 0.75 oz 100 4 15
Heath, snack size, 3 pieces, 1.5 oz 230 14 27
Hershey’s miniatures assortment, 5 pcs, 1.5 oz 210 13 25
Kit Kat, snack size, 6 pieces, 1.48 oz 210 11 27
Milky Way, fun size, 2 bars, 1.2 oz 150 6 24
170 8 24
Mounds, snack size, 1 bar, 0.6 oz 80 4.5 10
Nestle’s Crunch, fun size, 3 bars, 1.34 oz 180 9 26
PayDay, snack size, 1 bar, 0.7 oz 90 10 24
Reese’s PB Cups, snack size, 1 cup, 0.75 oz 110 6.5 12
Reese’s Sticks, snack size, 1 stick, 0.6 oz 90 5 10
Snickers, fun size, 2 bars, 1.2 oz 160 8 21
Twix, 3 mini pieces, 1 oz 150 8 20

Eating Right on a Budget — Wellness with Shuba

Fitness on a Budget, Food & Nutrition, Uncategorized

I wanted to talk about something today that often comes in the way of many people making more nutritious and holistic choices. Money! I know, I know….what an annoying topic. Nobody ever really wants to talk about money and the stress it causes. I for one have been on work leave for several weeks now. […]

via Eating Right on a Budget — Wellness with Shuba

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