Melon & Strawberry Crunch
1/3 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup oat bran
2 tbsp toasted slivered almonds
Scant 1/4 cup plumped dried apricots, finely chopped
1/2 melon, such as galia
8 oz strawberries
2/3 cup orange juice or lowfat milk, to serve (optional)
1) Put the rolled oats and oat bran in a bowl and stir in the almonds and dried apricots.
2) Discard the skin and seeds from the melon and cut into small bite-size pieces. Halve the strawberries if large.
3) Divide the rolled oat mixture among 4 individual bowls then top with the fruits. If desired, serve with either lowfat milk or orange juice.
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Eating Eggs Helps Women Lose Weight
Good news ladies. If you want to accelerate their weight loss we have an eggcellent suggestion. According to a new study from the Rochester Centre for Obesity in America, eating eggs, particularly early in the day, will help to limit your calorie intake throughout the rest of the day, by more than 400 calories.
In the study, 30 overweight or obese women ate either an egg-based breakfast (2 eggs) or a bagel-based breakfast, containing the same amount of calories and almost identical levels of protein. The researchers recorded the women’s eating habits and found that just before lunch, the women who had eaten eggs for breakfast felt less hungry and ate a smaller lunch as a result. Better still, over the next 36 hours the group eating the egg-containing breakfast consumed, on average, 417 calories less than the bagel-eating group.
Obviously the study suggests that women who ate eggs for breakfast felt fuller for longer so that they would eat less at their next few meals. This is great news if you are trying to lose weight as it means you may find it easier to cut calories without feeling hungry. In fact, based on these results you could expect to lose an extra 4 pounds a month, simply by eating eggs for breakfast!
Eggs are packed with a variety of nutrients including protein, zinc, iron and vitamins A, D, E and B12, but contain just 85 calories each. Old advice to limit eggs to just a few each week has also been abandoned. According to the Food Standards Agency, there’s now no limit to the number of eggs you can eat in a week as part of a healthy balanced diet. If you fancy starting the day with eggs we suggest you avoid frying them and combine them with wholemeal toast and a glass of vitamin C-rich unsweetened orange juice, which will help the body make the best use of the iron in the eggs.
More studies support the growing body of research on the nutritional benefit of egg consumption including that eggs promote weight loss and aid brain and memory function. A randomized study at Louisiana State University found that overweight and obese women who consumed a breakfast of 2 eggs a day for 5 or more days a week for 8 weeks, lost 65% more weight, had an 83% greater reduction in waist circumference and reported greater improvements in energy levels that the women who consumed other foods with the same number of calories. This confirmed a study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, which found an egg breakfast induced greater satiety and significantly reduced short-term food intake compared to a calorically equivalent bagel breakfast.
Eggs contain choline, which is an important and essential nutrient needed for normal functioning of all cells especially brain cells. Choline is also critical for brain and memory development in fetuses. Iowa State University recently assessed choline intake and found all Americans are deficient in choline, particularly pregnant women. The National Academy of Sciences recommends 425-550 mg choline per day for most adults. 2 eggs = 250mg choline or 50% of our daily requirement 3 oz. beef liver = 355mg 1 c brussels sprouts = 63mg 3 oz. salmon = 56 3 oz. cod = 71mg 1 c broccoli = 62mg 2 T wheat germ =22mg For the past 30 years eggs were thought to increase heart disease by raising blood cholesterol levels. Now it turns out eggs don’t raise cholesterol in most people and actually provide many important nutrients including good quality protein, folate, vitamin D, choline, zinc, iron, lutein and zeaxanthin that benefit our health.
Look at the benefits of eating eggs:
- Improve immune function
- Keep eyes healthy
- Lower cancer risk
- Lower heart disease risk
- Reduce osteoporosis
Eggs are versatile, economical and nutritious. They contribute many important nutrients to the diet: protein, iron, zinc, choline, lutein, zeaxanthin, folate and vitamin D. Eggs contain the highest biological value protein of any food. Iron and zinc are important for a healthy immune system, while choline is needed for brain development and memory. Lutein & zeaxanthin are carotenoids that prevent macular degeneration & atherosclerosis.
Folate lowers homocysteine, heart disease & cancer risk and vitamin D is needed to utilize calcium. A problem with egg consumption is the risk of salmonella poisoning. If eggs are handled & cooked properly, the bacteria are killed and the disease avoided. Much of the early egg research was flawed, and researchers found no evidence of a significant association between egg consumption and the risk of heart disease or stroke in men or women. In fact, the American Heart Association published 2 studies showing healthy men and women could eat 2 eggs a day while on a low fat diet without significantly raising blood cholesterol levels or their risk of heart disease.
Bottom line: Eat more eggs and say good by to your appetite!
First of all let me start of by saying Whey protein is a great muscle-building supplement. But as with anything you put into your body, it’s very important to know the facts about whey protein. And fortunately, you’ll find that most of the facts about whey protein make it one of the best bodybuilding supplements on the market FOR CERTAIN PEOPLE.
Fact #1: Whey protein burns fat
Perhaps the most attractive quality about whey protein is that it helps people burn fat at an accelerated rate. The reason why whey protein helps bodybuilders burn fat is because it contains high amounts of calcium. After ingesting whey protein, the calcium prevents your body from storing high amounts of fat (the body typically stores large amounts of fat on low calcium diets). In addition to preventing fat storage, the calcium also promotes a breakdown of fat thus steering your body composition towards lean muscle.
Fact #2: Whey protein helps you take advantage of an anabolic window
After a workout, your body begins changing proteins and carbohydrates into muscle instead of fat. Unfortunately, this highly anabolic state shuts down after just 2 hours of activity. Seeing as how you have such a short amount of time to take advantage of this window, you want to maximize this time. Luckily, whey protein can help you take full advantage of this time period since it’s absorbed at a rapid pace. Once the whey protein is absorbed, it aids the body in changing proteins and carbs into muscle.
Fact #3: Whey protein helps digestion
Sure having better digestion isn’t as sexy as having a lean, sculpted body, but you’ll thank whey protein later on in life when you avoid digestion problems that plague others. Lactose, which is found in whey, turns into galacto-oligosaccharides that are used by intestinal bacteria. The intestinal bacteria are then better able to break down food and help your digestive tract.
Fact #4: Whey protein does not cause kidney damage
One of the worst myths regarding whey protein is that it somehow causes damage to the kidneys. But all of the whey protein users and potential users should be happy to know that no study has proven whey to be a kidney damager. Of course, you should always be careful with how much whey protein you ingest each day since any supplement can do harm when overused. Case in point, stick to the recommended servings of whey protein when you use it.
Fact #5: Excessive amounts of whey protein can cause dehydration
While most of the facts associated with whey protein are extremely beneficial, you do need to be careful with your intake as pointed out in fact #4. Failure to stick to the guidelines on whey protein packaging can lead to dehydration. Fortunately, this isn’t as serious as heart or kidney damage in the long-term, but it’s still no fun walking around with cottonmouth because you took too much whey protein.
Fact #6: Whey protein can prevent future illnesses
Besides helping athletes build muscle and burn fat, whey protein also enables people to ward off future illnesses and medical problems. Because of the fact that whey protein stabilizes blood sugar, it is very effective at preventing diabetes. Whey protein has also been linked to preventing prostate cancer and chronic periodontal disease. Aside from the physical diseases it helps prevent, whey battles depression too since it slows the production of the hormone cortisol and helps release serotonin (this is a calming neurotransmitter).
Fact #7: Whey protein is the most powerful muscle-building protein
While lots of proteins can help you pack on muscle and live a healthy lifestyle, no protein is as effective at building muscle as whey. When tested against other proteins, whey comes out on top in terms of its ability to be absorbed by the body quickly, how it’s used by the body, and how well the body retains whey protein.
This coupled with all of the other great facts about whey protein certainly make it worth a try next time you work out.
So you can see that if you are a bodybuilder and you are using whey protein as a supplement to your resistance routine you can expect great things. However, if you are a person that is finding an easier way to lose weight, just say NO WHEY. Whey protein is not a long term solution to weight loss and weight maintenance and should not be used as such.
Talk to your Genetix Counselor to see if whey protein can be used to help supplement your diet.
Weight Loss and the Pursuit of Happiness
“Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.”
Nothing could be truer when it comes to losing weight and keeping it off.
I get asked by clients all the time “I’m doing everything right why am I not losing more weight?” These clients actually are working very hard so it breaks my heart to tell them they have what we refer to as, a negative attitude or negative outlook on their health and perhaps on life in general.
The fact is that if you are not a happy dieter it will be harder for you to lose weight. Now you might think that the term “happy dieter” is an oxymoron, but clients who have focused on the positive aspect of weight loss i.e. what they are gaining and not what they are losing, or in this case what they are gaining is what they are losing instead of concentrating on what foods they can no longer eat for a couple of months.
Positive thoughts are absolutely empowering. A negative attitude can set processes in motion that makes losing weight difficult, if not impossible. Berating yourself every time you eat the wrong foods, constantly focusing on what you cannot eat and approaching your exercise regimen with dread are all ways that negative thought patterns can sabotage your weight loss efforts.
When you hold a negative image of yourself, you rob yourself of much-needed energy. When feeling powerless, depressed or unmotivated, it’s easy to skip your daily workout or eat a bag of potato chips to feel better. However, tuning into how you feel, acknowledging those feelings and transforming those thoughts into something more positive can actually help you to achieve your weight loss goals faster.
Strategies for Increasing Positive Thinking
A common response to those who tell you to think more positively is often: “I feel what I feel. I can’t help how I feel.” Positive thinking is only effective if it is in alignment with your true feelings. If you sincerely feel down about your body weight, telling yourself that everything is okay will often create internal discord.
The trick is to tap into those feelings that ring true for you. For example, keep a daily journal in which you write down your negative thoughts and feelings. If you feel you are lacking in willpower or just can’t overcome your cravings, write those thoughts down. When you acknowledge the darker emotions, they often tend to have less power over you.
It is important to then make a conscious effort to transform your thoughts. It may be true that you often cannot overcome your food cravings or stick to your diet. However, if there are times when you are able to stand strong, then focus on those moments and celebrate the triumphs. Maybe you put less sugar in your coffee today and said no to a second slice of pizza. Giving attention to the positive things will help to create greater self-esteem and motivation to continue with your weight loss efforts.
Stress management can be a powerful tool for wellness. There’s evidence that too much pressure is not just a mood killer. People who are under constant stress are more vulnerable to everything from colds to high blood pressure and heart disease. Although there are many ways to cope, one strategy is to eat stress-fighting foods Foods can fight stress in several ways. Comfort foods, like a bowl of warm oatmeal, actually boost levels of serotonin, a calming brain chemical. Other foods can reduce levels of cortisol and adrenaline, stress hormones that take a toll on the body over time. Finally, a nutritious diet can counteract the impact of stress, by shoring up the immune system and lowering blood pressure.
All carbs prompt the brain to make more serotonin. For a steady supply of this feel-good chemical, it’s best to eat complex carbs, which are digested more slowly. Good choices include whole-grain breakfast cereals, breads, and pastas, as well as old-fashioned oatmeal. Complex carbs can also help you feel balanced by stabilizing blood sugar levels.
Oranges make the list for their wealth of vitamin C. Studies suggest this vitamin can reduce levels of stress hormones while strengthening the immune system. In one study done in people with high blood pressure, blood pressure and cortisol levels (a stress hormone) returned to normal more quickly when people took vitamin C before a stressful task.
Popeye never lets stress get the best of him — maybe it’s all the magnesium in his spinach. Too little magnesium may trigger headaches and fatigue, compounding the effects of stress. One cup of spinach goes a long way toward replenishing magnesium stores. Not a spinach eater? Try some cooked soybeans or a filet of salmon, also high in magnesium. Green leafy vegetables are a rich source of magnesium.
To keep stress in check, make friends with fatty fish. Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fish like salmon and tuna, can prevent surges in stress hormones and protect against heart disease, mood disorders like depression, and premenstrual syndrome. For a steady supply of feel-good omega-3s, aim to eat 3 ounces of fatty fish at least twice a week.
Research suggests black tea can help you recover from stressful events more quickly.
One study compared people who drank 4 cups of tea daily for six weeks with people who drank a tea-like placebo. The real tea drinkers reported feeling calmer and had lower levels of cortisol after stressful situations. When it comes to stress, the caffeine in coffee can boost stress hormones and increase blood pressure.
Pistachios, as well as other nuts and seeds, contain healthy fats. Eating a handful of pistachios, walnuts, or almonds every day may help lower your cholesterol, reduce inflammation in the arteries of the heart, lower the risk of diabetes, and protect you against stress.
One of the best ways to reduce high blood pressure is to get enough potassium — and half an avocado has more potassium than a medium-sized banana. In addition, guacamole offers a nutritious alternative when stress has you craving a high-fat treat.
Almonds are chock full of helpful vitamins. There’s vitamin E to bolster the immune system, plus a range of B vitamins, which may make the body more resilient during bouts of stress such as depression. To get the benefits, snack on a quarter of a cup every day.
Crunchy raw vegetables can help fight stress in a purely mechanical way. Munching celery or carrot sticks helps release a clenched jaw and that can ward off tension.
Another bedtime stress buster is the time-honored glass of warm milk as a remedy for insomnia and restlessness. Researchers have found that calcium eases anxiety and mood swings linked to PMS. Dietitians typically recommend skim or low-fat milk.
There are many herbal supplements that claim to fight stress. One of the best studied is St. John’s wort, which has shown benefits for people with mild-to-moderate depression. Although more research is needed, the herb also appears to reduce symptoms of anxiety and PMS. There is less data on valerian root, another herb said to have a calming effect.
Besides changing your diet, one of the best stress-busting strategies is to start exercising. Aerobic exercise increases oxygen circulation and produces endorphins — chemicals that make you feel happy. To get the maximum benefit, aim for 30 minutes of aerobic exercise three to four times a week.
Stock your kitchen pantry with these staples so you are prepared for any healthy meal. Whether you are trying to lose weight or just maintaining to remain healthy, you always need to be prepared.
No pantry is complete without a few cans or pouches of water-packed tuna. Tuna can help add healthy omega-3 fats and protein to a variety of dishes.
Make sure your pantry is stocked with a variety of beans. Whether dried or canned, beans are an inexpensive alternative to animal protein. They’re also an excellent source of fiber. Serve them as a side dish or add them to soups, omelets, tacos, casseroles, or salads. Thoroughly rinsing canned beans can slash sodium content by 40%.
A family favorite, pasta goes with virtually all meats and vegetables. It comes in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors to help make meals more interesting. Get more fiber by choosing whole-grain or whole-grain blend pasta.
You’ll want to taste the fruity, peppery flavor of extra-virgin olive oil. Use it to dress salads, and grains. Canola oil performs best in frying pans and woks. Both of these heart-healthy oils lower certain disease risks and are preferable to solid fats like butter. Use either oil to sauté vegetables and meat.
Brown rice is a healthy, high-fiber whole grain. Couscous, bulgur, and farro are available in whole-grain versions, too. These versatile grains complement any meat, fish, poultry, or vegetable as a centerpiece or side dish. Couscous, bulgur, and the seeds of the grain-like plant quinoa can be cooked quickly. For richer flavor, cook grains in broth or stock. Combine them with colorful vegetables, nuts, and seeds.
Having canned tomatoes on hand can make life a lot easier when you’re creating quick and healthy meals. Tomatoes are rich in lycopene and vitamins A and C. They work in a variety of dishes, like soups and casseroles. And of course, they’re delicious. Spike them with basil and other herbs to use as a quick sauce for meats, pasta, or whole grains. Choose tomatoes with no added salt.
Don’t think of nuts as just a party food. They’re an excellent source of protein, fiber, good fats, and other healthy nutrients. If you regularly eat nuts as part of a healthy diet, you may reduce your risk of heart disease. Nuts pair well with sweet and savory foods. Use unsalted nuts in hot or cold cereals or as a meat alternative in pasta, grains, salads, or vegetables. Eat them with fruit or yogurt, in desserts, or as a nutritious snack.
In a perfect world, you’d have time to make your own stock from fresh meat or vegetables. (Homemade stock allows you to control the salt in your cooking.) If you
don’t have enough time, buy low-sodium or unsalted chicken, beef, or vegetable stock to add depth of flavor to your dishes. Use it as the base for a quick soup or sauce. Rice and whole grains may taste richer when cooked in stock instead of water.
Rich in nutrients, loaded with antioxidants and fiber, and low in calories, fruit belongs at every meal. Canned fruit (which is just as nutritious as fresh or frozen if canned without sugar or syrups) makes a delicious snack or dessert alone or over yogurt, ice cream, or waffles. Dried fruit adds pizzazz to salads, cereals, and fish, and goes well with nuts for the perfect healthy snack.