Posts from 2016-09

Preparing For Autumn's Arrival

autumn-leave-1415541_960_720

 

 

The Autumn season and all its glory is quickly approaching! So, whether you're pumped to get your yearly pumpkin fix (or maybe you would rather pass)  here are some tips and tricks to staying healthy this fall!

  Seasonal Foods:

 When you walk into a grocery store it's hard to keep in mind what’s in season and what’s not in season. Keeping this in mind is important; picking foods that are currently in season is key to getting the best produce you possibly can. Often times when you buy out of season produce ,the taste and other aspects can be compromised. Below is a list of produce that is in season during fall months and always remember “fresh is best”.

 o   Beets

 o   Bell Peppers

 o   Carrots

 o   Sweet Potatoes

 o   Butternut Squash

 o   Arugula

 o   Cabbage

 o   Celery

 o   Broccoli

 o   Brussel Sprouts

 o   Kale

 o   Romaine

 o   Apples

 Stay Active:

 With the weather beginning to cool off, some people find it hard to remain active during this time since a lot of physical activity is done outside. However the weather should not be an excuse to derail your progress or to not accomplish any goals you have set forth. With that being said here are some tips to keep you and your family active.

 1. One great resource is to join or utilize your gym membership. They have lots of great equipment and its indoors.

 2.Fall is also a GREAT time to go on a nature hike since the leaves are beginning to change, so not only do you get wonderful views you also get moving.

 3. A great tip to get the whole family moving is to go apple picking or visit a pumpkin patch. This is a great way to get the whole family outdoors and active.

 4. Treat yourself to some temperature appropriate workout gear.

 

 Wrapping Up:

 In conclusion, staying healthy in fall is essential and has many factors including controlling portions on turkey day, keeping your mental well being in check, eating local foods, and staying active. Finally, everyone is different so as long as you're keeping yourself healthy and well, cater these tips to you and your desires.

 P.S Stay warm with this Garden Vegetable Soup Recipe.

 (Yields 6-8 servings). 255 calories per serving.

 Ingredients

o   2 tablespoons olive oil

 o   2 cups chopped leeks, white part only (from approximately 3 medium leeks)

 o   2 tablespoons finely minced garlic

 o   Kosher salt

 o   2 cups carrots, peeled and chopped (approximately 2 medium)

 o   2 cups peeled and diced potatoes

 o   2 cups fresh green beans, broken or cut into 3/4-inch pieces

 o   2 quarts chicken or vegetable broth

 o   4 cups peeled, seeded, and chopped tomatoes

 o   2 ears corn, kernels removed

 o   1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

 o   1/4 cup packed, chopped fresh parsley leaves

 o   1 to 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

  Directions

o   Heat the olive oil in large, heavy-bottomed stockpot over medium-low heat.  Once hot, add the leeks, garlic, and a pinch of salt and sweat until they begin to soften, approximately 7 to 8 minutes. Add the carrots, potatoes, and green beans and  continue to cook for 4 to 5 more minutes, stirring occasionally.

o    Add the stock, increase the heat to high, and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, add the tomatoes, corn kernels, and pepper. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook until the vegetables are fork tender, approximately 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from heat and add the parsley and lemon juice. Season, to taste, with kosher salt. Serve immediately.

Getting the Most Out Of Your Salad

Salad

 

 

Are you tired of making a mediocre salad? Salads can be very healthy for you, but we don’t always make them that way. Do you only have one or two colors on your salad or load it with a high calorie dressing or other high calorie foods? Some salads can cost you as many as 1,000 calories or more. Try following these simple steps to a healthier salad.

 

  1. Choose Your Greens

o   The darker or redder, the better

o   Choose romaine and leaf lettuces, baby spinach or a kale mix

o   Iceberg and other pale lettuces are high in water content and contain fewer nutrients

 

II.   Give It Color and Crunch

o   The more color you add, the more nutrients you will be consuming

o   The sky is the limit with fruits and veggies

     -  Mix it up and try adding red, orange, green pepper, beets, purple cabbage, celery, cucumber, carrots, strawberries, blueberries, mandarin oranges, peaches, grapes, etc…

o   You can also add more crunch by adding almonds, pecans, walnuts and sunflower seeds

 

III.  Add Some Protein

o   Protein can help balance your meal and help you feel fuller

o   Sources of protein can be from black beans, kidney beans, chicken, turkey, fish, lean beef, hard boiled eggs, low fat cheese or even tofu

o   Try to avoid full fat cheese because it can be high in saturated fat

 

IV. Lastly, Add Your Salad Dressing

o   Oil and vinegar are great choices

o   Oils in salad dressing help us absorb the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K

o   A small portion of 1-2 tablespoons is all that should be needed

 

 

Fruit and Vegetable Salad Supreme

1/2 pound asparagus spears, cut into bite-size pieces

2 cups thinly sliced carrot

8 cups mixed salad greens

2 cups sliced strawberries

1/2 cup light balsamic vinaigrette

1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled feta cheese

1/2 cup pecan halves, toasted

 

Bring a large saucepan filled with water to a boil. Prepare a bowl of ice water. Add asparagus and carrot to boiling water. Remove after 2 minutes, or when color has brightened; drain and plunge into ice water. Drain, and pat dry.  Combine salad greens, strawberries, and vegetables. Add dressing; toss well before serving. Top with cheese and pecans.

Yields: 4 Servings

Serving Size: 2 ¾ Cups

Nutrition Information Per Serving: 227 kcal, 7 grams of protein, 15 grams of fat

 

References:

www.eatright.org

www.health.com

www.health.clevelandclinic.org

 

5 Tips to Improve your Workout Routine

 

Weights

 

1. Add some weight

When I want to improve my normal exercise routine I use an extra 3lb weight to boost up my normal cardio. You can also use light weights at the end of your workout to improve muscle tone and burn extra calories. As tolerated an extra 20 minutes of weight endurance during/after every workout can dramatically improve fitness.

 

 2. Spruce it up

 You don’t have to use big equipment to get a great workout. Spruce up your normal routine with a jump rope, fitness ball, Zumba class or even a hike in the mountains! A one hour hike or Zumba class can burn an enormous 500-1,000 calories. Jumping rope can burn an additional 10-20 calories per minute depending on the intensity.

 

3. Hydrate

Staying hydrated all day prior to a workout will prevent early fatigue during and can also improve endurance. If you’re not properly hydrated prior to and during exercise; performance and longevity will suffer, and therefore; less calories will be burned.

 

 4. Fuel up

 If it has been several hours since your last meal/snack, fuel up with a healthy dose of protein and complex carbohydrates.  Your body cannot run on empty, therefore; a healthy snack about 30 min- 1 hour prior to exercise will keep your body fueled.  Studies have shown that pre-workout protein will increase resting energy expenditure by an average of 6-6.5%.

 

5. Stay motivated

Committing to a regular workout regimen may take some motivation. The best tip that has helped me stay motivated is music.  When I download new music or make a new playlist I am eager to get to the gym. If music doesn’t help get you motivated, pick a work out partner; a friend who will help keep you committed to reaching your exercise goals. You can also try the reward system; give yourself a special reward/gift at the end of the week/month for meeting your exercise goals.