Friday, July 30, 2010

Delicious Discovery

Special K Crackers


Special K Crackers, Italian Tomato & Herb, 8-Ounce Packages (Pack of 4)I'm always looking for the latest and greatest and this one came from two excellent sources...my Mother and the Grab's (on the beach, no less!). Special K Crackers are fabulous. A "must run out to the grocery store and purchase immediately" product.


I have tried both the Multigrain and Italian Tomato and Herb varieties. Both are yummy, but I give the edge to the Multigrain. Both have just 90 calories for 17 crackers. As for the taste...think Wheat Thins, only better. They are great with salsa, guacamole, hummus, low-fat cheese...or just plain! So do try them..and keep the ideas coming!
Special K Crackers, Multi-Grain, 8-Ounce Packages (Pack of 4)


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Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Trim Down Tip

Get Up!


A recent study conducted in Australia found that too much sitting during the day can shorten your lifespan. Do you even need to hear the details? Ok ok...here is the overview.


I know that this study doesn't take into effect physical activity or starting health of the individuals studied, however the results are obvious. The more inactive you become, the more likely you are to eat, gain weight and possibly develop diseases associated with being overweight such as diabetes, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, heart disease etc. 


So get off the couch and do squats during commercials. Get up every half hour and take a walk around your office. Find little ways to be active throughout the day and stay healthy!




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Monday, July 26, 2010

Foods to Ponder

Corn


It is the perfect time of year for grilling...and there is nothing better than grilled vegetables. One of the best types?  Corn on the cob. Corn is a great source of Vitamin B, folate, dietary fiber, vitamin C, phosphorus and manganese. One serving from the cob has just 60 calories.


The Story of CornHead to your local farmer's market or farm stand for the best selection of fresh corn. Look for husks that are tightly wrapped. The silk should be silky and moist. Kernals should be plump and in even rows. Try to eat corn the day of purchase but it will last for a few days in the refrigerator. 


Corn is a fabulous side dish grilled or steamed or as an ingredient in a recipe. This recipe for Roasted Red Pepper and Corn Salsa is a perfect summer treat. This salad is a great alternative to your everyday green salad. 


Eat up and enjoy!




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Friday, July 23, 2010

Delicious Discovery

Trader Joe's Organic Corn Chip Dippers


These bring me back to my childhood. Every day for lunch I would hope to find a bag of Fritos in my lunch box. They were such a treat--and so delicious. However, I stay far away from them these days as they are completely addicting and not so healthy. 


That was until I stumbled upon the Trader Joe's version this past weekend: Organic Corn Chip Dippers. I'll be up front--the nutritionals are exactly the same. However, the TJ's version are FAR less greasy and in my opinion even better tasting. They are a perfect treat or snack with some salsa, hummus or guacamole. Just remember to stay within the serving size and not to go overboard. It might get dicey!




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Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Trim Down Tip

Eat to Live or Live to Eat?


Last week the Wall Street Journal published a really interesting article entitled "Eating to Live or Living to Eat". Basically it discusses Hedonic eaters versus Homeostatic eaters. Hedonic eaters see a food that stimulates them and eat it regardless of hunger level. Homeostatic eaters are the opposite. They eat only if they are hungry, regardless of the food. 


The Wall Street Journal (6-month subscription)Overweight and obese people are more likely to have hedonic tendencies whereas homeostatic people are typically at a normal weight. Thus, the question is, can this brain tendency be changed? The quick answer is yes and no. There are some studies that show that the brain tendencies may be altered due to high fat, high sweet diets. The kicker is that for many people, even when weight loss is successful, the brain may still beg you to eat when you aren't hungry. 


What's the answer? Unfortunately, there isn't one yet. But, take the test on the left hand side of the article and find out if you are a hedonic eater. It may help you pinpoint your weight loss problems.




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Monday, July 19, 2010

Foods to Ponder

Gluten


I have had a lot of requests for information on Celiac Disease. So, for those of you who asked...here you go!


Celiac disease is a disease of the digestive system that alters the intestine and disrupts nutrient absorption. Those suffering from celiac disease are said to have a gluten intolerance. Gluten is a protein found mainly in wheat, barley and rye. However, it is also found in several processed foods on the market. For more information on celiac disease click here and contact a doctor if you think you may be experiencing symptoms.


When a person with celiac disease ingests gluten, the body forms antibodies which attack the intestinal lining. Once the villi (hair-like substances that line the intestine) are damaged, the body cannot absorb nutrients properly. This results in malnourishment. Following a gluten-free diet can alleviate symptoms and allows for the intestine to heal--but it does not cure the disease. This website is a great resource for the latest and greatest gluten-free foods on the market.


Many grocery stores, including Whole Foods and Trader Joe's have lists of gluten free products available in the market. Just ask at the customer service desk. A fabulous store for those with celiac disease is My Low Carb Life. It is located in Danvers, MA and is recommended by hospitals and dietitians in the Boston area. Check it out! 


This blog and this blog is a great resource for people who have questions about new products and recipes sans gluten. Finally..what would life be without cupcakes? Gluten-free people RUN out and purchase Babycakes. Friends of mine swear by it!




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Friday, July 16, 2010

Delicious Discovery

Belgioioso Unwrap & Roll Fresh Mozzarella Sheet


My mother-in-law gets credit for this one! She let me in on her latest find at the grocery store. Belgioioso Cheese has delicious products but this one is fabulous. The Unwrap & Roll Fresh Mozzarella Sheet is the best! 


BelGioioso Fresh Mozzarella Unwrap & RollIt's a sheet of mozzarella cheese that you unwrap and then layer with whatever ingredients you choose.  Then just roll it back up and slice.  Delicious! The website has all sorts of recipes ideas. Try layering tomato and basil or smoked salmon with chives. The possibilities are endless! It's an easy appetizer to prepare for a party or just as a healthy snack. Go pick it up...fast!


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Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Trim Down Tip

What to Eat at...Chipotle


I love burritos.  My husband got me into them when we started dating and since then I have been on the quest for a healthy but delicious option at a fast-food burrito joint. There are a million of them out there...but my favorite is Chipotle.  The main reason is their mission "Food with Integrity". Read about it and you'll see why I think they rock!


Regardless...healthy, low-calorie options are still hard to find.  You can be fooled!  Chipotle makes it somewhat easy for you--you choose the wrap and fillings--it's make your own burrito, taco etc.  The nutritional information is available online and itemizes each food.  My tips:


1. The burrito bowl is the best way to go if you are looking to have meat and a few extras. A burrito tortilla has 290 calories. A taco tortilla has 90 (they are 1/4 the size).


2. Stay far away from the chips -- no matter what! One 4 oz. bag has 570 calories and 27 grams of fat.


3. If you are going to have a burrito--and by all means please do--lighten up on what you add to it.  Choose either meat or beans, ask for light on the rice and load up on the veggies.


4. Choose guacamole over cheese--every time.  The calories are a bit higher (50 extra) because avocados have more fat...but it's unsaturated healthy fat.  Plus, Chipotle makes their guacamole fresh and it's awesome.


5. Salsa adds flavor without a lot of calories. Load up on it and enjoy!




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Monday, July 12, 2010

Foods to Ponder

Kangen Water


My father has been going to a gym in Boston for a few years. It is really a physical therapy spot with a small gym, so a lot of chatter that goes on about the latest and greatest product to heal all or make you run faster. Consequently, he is always asking me about said product. The newest question...Kangen Water. Have you ever heard of it? What does it do? Does it work?


Enagic Kangen Water Leveluk SD501 Water Ionizer MachineThe theory behind Kangen Water is that it "works to detoxify your colon by neutralizing free radicals, keeping your immune system as strong as possible". The water is said to "super-hydrate and reduce acidity in the body to aid in weight loss". There are tens of websites that sell Kangen Water. Producers basically separate the H2O molecules of water through a process creating alkaline and acidic water, then bottle the alkaline water. The water is not sold in bottles but instead you have to purchase a machine which separates the water for you. These cost between $500 and $4,000!  Have you heard enough yet?


My thoughts are stick with good old natural water if you are working out for less than 90 minutes. More than 90 minutes...look for a sports drink that has around 15 grams of carb per serving. Your body will detoxify itself...and you will be a heck of a lot richer!




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Friday, July 9, 2010

Delicious Discovery

Dunkin' Donuts Egg White Turkey Sausage Flatbread Sandwich


Dunkin Donuts Orginal Blend CoffeeI'm not a huge fan of fast food--but sometimes you just have to eat on the run. When it comes to breakfast--I love a good breakfast sandwich. Dunkin' Donuts is known for their breakfast--but not necessarily in a good way.  However, they have been taking great strides to provide healthy options through the DDSmart menu. One of my favorites--the Egg White Turkey Sausage Flatbread Sandwich.


The flatbread itself is yummy.  Plus the egg whites are filled with turkey sausage and spinach then topped with low-fat mozzarella cheese. It totals out at just 290 calories and 8 grams of fat. Yummy!  It's a great, healthy yet filling option if you are out and in need of something to eat--at any time of day!  Top it off with an Medium Iced Latte Lite and you have a perfect 400 calorie meal!




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Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Trim Down Tip

Battle of the Frozen Coffee Drinks


It's 100 degrees outside today. Clearly all I can think about is staying cool. This translates into two things. The first...sprinting from my house to my car and back. The second...ice cream or something cold to drink. I swear Dunkin' Donuts purchased extra ad time last night in preparation for the heat wave.  All I see are commercials for Coffee Coolattas.  So the question is--should you venture out for a cool treat?


There are five varieties of Coolatta's offered by Dunkin' Donuts...all of which come in three sizes. The Watermelon, Blue Raspberry, Vanilla Bean, Tropicana Orange and Strawberry Fruit come as is--no changes...i.e. you can't make them healthier...at all. A small (16 oz) will run you between 220 and 430 calories (the vanilla bean is the highest!). Note I quoted the smallest size...and it really is small.


The Coffee Coolatta can be made with cream, milk or skim milk. Take a guess which has the highest and lowest calories. A small Coffee Coolatta made with cream has 400 calories and 23 grams of fat. Ouch. Switch to milk and you are down to 240 calories and 4 grams of fat--big difference. Skim milk? 210 calories and no fat. In my opinion, the Coffee Coolatta is the tastiest option and the healthiest if you switch to skim milk!


So I say...head out for a Coffee Coolatta today--it will cool you down and satisfy your sweet tooth without adding on the pounds...just don't make it a daily habit!


To be continued...


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Friday, July 2, 2010

Delicious Discovery

Trader Giotto's Roasted Garlic Marinara


I've never been a fan of jarred tomato sauce.  I was spoiled growing up by my Mother's homemade sauce (i.e. gravy).  So when I was walking through the aisles of my favorite grocery store I was hesitant to take a free sample of marinara sauce...but it was served with Trader Joe's garlic bread, so how could I resist?  Delicious...good choice, Nicole!


This being said...it's not as good as my Mom's...but it's pretty darn good for a jarred sauce.  Plus it's great for whipping up a great dinner...fast!  One half cup has 80 calories and 4.5 grams of fat.  It's definitely a great item to keep in the cupboard "just in case". Maybe you should pick up some of the garlic bread while you are at it!


NOTE: There will be no post on Monday, July 5th.  Happy Fourth of July!


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