Saturday, February 21, 2015

How Much is Too Much?

When it comes to eating healthy, the amount we eat plays a big role.  Even the healthiest of foods lose their benefits if we eat too much. A good example is avocados or nuts, they are both healthy fats and sources of protein and nutrients... with this said eating too much of either is really more calories and fats than you need in a day.  So on the journey to eating healthy it is important to discuss portions. How much is too much, and how much is just enough? 

-There are MANY ways to portion out food. I find the easiest ways for me is to read labels and use my hand. 
-Reading labels on food gives you the "portion size" at the top. It is a great eye opener to see that my can of soup is 2 servings, and 6 crackers is the suggested portion. 
-When the food is not packaged, using my hand is the best way I found to monitor portions.
My Hand Portion Chart
-Fist: Vegetables, Fruits, Rice, Noodles
-Palm: Meat, Fish, Egg, Yogurt
-Handful: Nuts, Dried Fruit, Granola, Muffins
-2 Handfuls: Popcorn, Chips, Crackers, Pretzels
-Thumb: Peanut butter, Cheese, Ranch
-Thumb Tip: Oil, Butter, Mayonnaise

Tips on eating less:
-Buy smaller bowls and plates. Humans are visual, and seeing a "full" plate of food is pleasing. If the plate is smaller, it takes less to fill it up! 
-Drink water. When dehydrated, your body signals to eat. Having a glass of water or broth based soup before every meal helps you realize when you are full and stay hydrated. 
-Portion out  snacks.  When meal prepping, I portion out my snacks.  This prevents me from eating a whole bag of crackers at once, and instead enjoy a smaller pre-made bag. Portioning out foods when you are not hungry will help you stop yourself from finishing a food while watching TV or just munching.
-Add Veggies!  Most vegetables are high in fiber (great to fill you up) and low on fat and calories.  Vegetables like celery, lettuce, asparagus, and peppers are great to add to any dish. 
-Pay Attention. Be aware of what you are eating. It sounds easy, but we have all watched TV and ate chips.... then realized you ate the whole bag and you are still not satisfied. 

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Squish Squash

Butternut Squash Soup

  • 1 Butternut Squash
    • If the squash look small you can use two or add a frozen package of squash
  • 1/2 of an Onion
  • 1/2 cup Milk
  • 1/4 cup Water
  • Drizzle of Olive Oil
  • 3 Tbls Minced Garlic
  • Sprinkle of Ginger
  • Sprinkle of Curry Powder 
  • Sprinkle of Cinnamon
  • Sprinkle of Sea Salt

-Halve Squash and scoop out seeds
-Microwave squash for 6-10 minutes until soft
-Scoop squash out into blender
-Chop onion and add to blender
-Add in water, olive oil and garlic, Blend Well
-Sprinkle in Seasonings to taste and blend until mixed
-When serving, heat soup fully over stove or in microwave

Scoop the Cooked Squash and Chop the Onion!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Dressing Up Your Lettuce

Herb and Yogurt Dressing

  • 1/2 cup Greek Yogurt
    •  (I use zero fat Fage)
  • 1/2 cup Olive Oil
  • 1/4 cup Fresh dill
  • 1/4 cup Fresh mint
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 3 Tbls minced Garlic
  • Sprinkle of Sea Salt
  • Sprinkle Water
-Add all ingredients into blender
-Blend until well mixed
-Store in refrigerator

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Crunchy and Crispy Day Old Bread

Fresh Baked Croutons

  • 1 Loaf of French Bread
  • 2 tbls Minced Garlic
  • 3 tbls Chopped Fresh Dill
  • Pinch of Sea Salt
  • Drizzle of Olive Oil

-Preheat oven to 375 degrees
-Tear the Bread into bite size pieces
-Toss bread with garlic, salt, dill and olive oil
-Spread the pieces out on a cookie sheet
-Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden crunchy brown
-Enjoy in moderation!

Monday, February 9, 2015

Oatmeal without the bowl

Oatmeal Bites

  • 3 cups of Oats
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbl cinnamon
  • Sprinkle Salt
  • Toppings of your choice

-Preheat oven to 350 degrees
-In large bowl, whisk eggs and oil together
-Mix in milk, applesauce, baking powder, cinnamon and salt
-Fold in oats
-Fill muffin tin with mixture evenly
-Top muffins with nuts, fruit, or chocolate chips
-Bake for 30 minutes or until solid
-Let cool in tin for 5 minutes before removing

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Meal Prep 202

Another week of Meals! 

I can't get enough of meal prepping! I hope that my grocery list and weeks worth of recipes are helping some of you eat healthier, plan ahead for your meals and try a new recipe. Cooking more is one of my new years resolutions, and each week I am making an effort to try new recipes and foods.

The snow at my parents house!

The groundhog saw his shadow... that means 6 more weeks of winter. The midwest is now a cold snowy wonderland, and I have been craving comfort food. Warm soups, creamy dressings, CARBS and sweets. These choices can be horrible for your health, but I enjoy the challenge making these cravings into healthy options for the week.

As usual, I planned ahead on Saturday. This week's grocery list:

I went grocery shopping on Sunday:

This week's breakfasts are oatmeal bites.  I usually love a savory breakfast of omelets or leftovers, but this week I was craving sweets. These oatmeal bites are a healthy way for me to enjoy a sweet start to the day, or a sweet dessert before bed. They are even good enough to share  with my best friend during radiology lectures this week. Link to the Recipe!

Lunches are salads.  I love having one salad a day, so I make 5-6 salads on Sunday to enjoy for lunches or dinners each day.  This week's salads include yellow tomatoes, avocados, blueberries, egg whites and the most delicious Greek yogurt herb dressing (Link to recipe).  This dressing satisfied my craving for creamy dressings without having the guilt. I also dipped carrots in the dressing for a snack. 

Perfect Dressing to Replace Full Fat Creamy Ones!

Dinners this week is a terrific butternut squash soup with homemade croutons.  This warm soup and large crunchy croutons (Link to recipe) hits the spot on a cold night. Having a turkey wrap along side this soup is also great for when I am very hungry after a workout. (Link to Soup Recipe)

Warm Squash soup! So Filling!

This week's meals helped me eat great during my week of clinic and lectures.  I will be posting these recipes throughout the week and adding the links to this post. 


Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Jolly Green Smoothie

Detox Green Smoothie

  • 1 Banana
  • 2 Handfuls of Kale
  • 1/2 Cucumber
  • 2 Small Apples
  • 1 Cup Soy Milk
  • Berries
  • Drizzle of Honey

-Chop Fruits and Vegetables
-Add all ingredients into blender
-Blend until smooth

Cucumbers are naturally low calorie and consuming them will help with maintain a healthy weight. They also help with diabetes prevention and heart health. The high water content and electrolytes help with hydration . Cucumbers also help with water retention and reduce bloat. Their anti-inflammatory effects depuff the body and will  even soothe a sunburn. The Vitamin K in cucumbers helps maintain bone health.