Tuesday, April 6, 2010


I was researching some health and fitness stuff on the American Heart Association website and they had these great motivational slogans that if we all live by, we can take a step towards a healthier, more fufulling life.

Today is the day I.... drink water instead of soda
Today is the day I.... eat apples instead of apple pie.
Today is the day I.... eat what i want my children to eat.
Today is the day I.... take a 30 minute walk at lunch time.
Today is the day I.... dust off my rollerblades/running shoes.
Today is the day I.... check my heart health.
Today is the day I.... take the stairs rather than the elevator.
Today is the day I.... get my blood pressure checked.
Today is the day I.... burn 250 extra calories.
Today is the day I.... get my cholestorol checked.

Maybe just try and do 2-3 of these things this week, every day and see how it makes you feel!

Healthy Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Nutrition Information
Calories – 298Protein – 27 gTotal Fat – 9 gSaturated Fat – 2 gCholesterol – 80 mgSodium – 610 mgCarbohydrate – 34 gFiber – 5 g

• 4 medium carrots, peeled and finely diced
• 2 stalks celery, finely diced
• 1 large red bell pepper, seeded and finely diced
• 1 (8-ounce) can water chestnuts, drained and finely diced
• 3 scallions (white and green parts), thinly sliced
• 2 tablespoons grated or finely minced fresh ginger
• 4 cloves garlic, minced
• 1 pound ground chicken (at least 90% lean)
• 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
• 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
• 1/3 cup bottle Chinese plum sauce
• 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
• 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
• 1 teaspoon hot chili paste, such as sriracha (or to taste)
• 1/4 cup unsalted roasted cashews, chopped
• 1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro, plus extra for garnish (optional)
• 1 head Boston or Bibb lettuce

Liberally coat a large skillet with oil spray, and preheat it over medium-high heat.
Add the carrots, celery, bell pepper, water chestnuts, scallions, ginger, and garlic. Sauté, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables soften slightly, about 5 minutes, adding a tablespoon of water at a time as necessary to prevent scorching.
Reapply oil spray if necessary, and add the ground chicken to the skillet. Cook until the chicken is no longer pink, breaking the meat into a fine crumble with a wooden spoon as it cooks. Season with the salt and pepper.
Add the plum sauce, soy sauce, vinegar, and chili paste and stir to coat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until heated through.
Remove the skillet from the heat, and stir in the cashews and cilantro. Allow the mixture to cool slightly, about 5 minutes.
Clean the lettuce and break off 12 individual leaves (trim away the stem end of the leaves if they are tough). Fill each lettuce cup with roughly ½ cup of the chicken mixture. Garnish with additional cilantro if desired.

Friday, March 26, 2010

My thoughts on healthcare

Many of you who know me, understand how conservative I am so it is no surprise how against I am of the new health care "reform" that has recently passed. I am against taking away the right to chose (let's be honest, that is EXACTLY what Obama is doing-- taking away our choice of whether or not to get health-care)

So here are a few thoughts on what I think WE could all do to help America have better health care. I get that this would all only happen in a perfect world... but hey, a girl can dream, right?!

First off.... Americans are fat. We are. Just admit it. I have accepted that, so you should too. I was once super large... and I could sit here and blame it on genetics or something, but most of it came down to my own lifestyle. I was lazy and liked to eat... a lot. So you put those two together, what do you get? Weight gain.

So we as Americans need to take our health MORE seriously! I am a firm believe that Medicare wouldn't be in such disarray if it weren't for type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases that clog up the whole system (both are obesity related diseases). So we need to take "health-care" in our own hands.

I can tell you first hand the benefits of going from super lazy and obese to a healthy weight and in good shape. Is it easy? HECK NO! I have to literally schedule an hour in my day (which is hard working full time and school full time) to work out. I have to map out and plan my meals to ensure I am getting the lean proteins and vegetables and all that other jazz that I need to stay fit. But man oh man, it feels amazing after you run for an hour and feel that accomplishment. And after I eat a delicious and healthy salad, I can just feel the good energy that makes my body feel so much better.

My asthma is almost completely gone now. Growing up, I had to go to an asthma doctor once a week because it was so bad. Once I began working out daily, it slowly faded. I took my own heath into my own hands. Many problems that Americans face are due to their own lifestyle. The government can't control that-- Only YOU can!

I am not saying that by taking care of our bodies that we will never have to see a doctor again, we all need our checkups and stuff... but I know it would allow us to be sick less frequent. Just think that if we as Americans took care of ourselves and truly treated our bodies as temples, of how many diseases would be diminished and cancers would be less frequent? It's a real possibility! So my challenge to you is to break out your running shoes and go for a walk around the block and to go through your fridge and throw out the junk! Start taking your health into your own hands... something the government should NOT control! Do it... I triple dare you!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Half and Half

And I am not talking about the creamer you put in your coffee.

This is something Geoff and I are very dedicated in doing.

Whenever we go out to eat-- we SPLIT an entree. And you know what? We never leave feeling unsatisfied.

Portion sizes are about double what they should be anyways, and this is MUCH easier on your pocketbook. Give it a try-- next date night of girls night out or whatever the occasion may be... split your meal!

Just tonight Geoff and I split a whole wheat turkey avacado sandwhich with fruit and baked chips from Jason's Deli... our total bill was just a little over 7 dollars and our calorie intake was about 400 each! Can't beat that!

Try it-- I dare you!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Time is of the essence!

I don't know about you, but when I come home from a long day of work-- I am FAMISHED! It is so easy to eat unhealthy when this happens cause lets face it-- how easy is it to go through the drive through of a fast food joint or to throw a frozen pizza in the oven? Well, eating healthy can be quick and easy! It just takes a small effort and dedication to your health... just be sure to plan your menu for the week and you will be ready to eat quick and healthy! Here are a few new recipes for a quick, delicious and healthy dinner. Enjoy!

Grilled Chicken with Chipotle-Orange Glaze

  • 1 tablespoon orange juice concentrate, thawed
  • 1.5 teaspoons finely chopped chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, (see Note)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon molasses
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of fat (8 ounces)
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

  1. Preheat grill or broiler to high. Lightly oil the rack.
  2. Whisk orange juice concentrate, chiles, vinegar, molasses and mustard in a small bowl.
  3. Sprinkle chicken with salt. Grill or broil the chicken for 2 minutes. Turn the chicken, brush with the chipotle-orange glaze, and cook, brushing occasionally with more of the glaze, 4 minutes more. Turn the chicken again, brush with the glaze, and cook until no longer pink in the middle, 2 to 5 minutes more.


2 eggplant cut into in 1/2 inch slices
3 zucchini, cut into chunks
2 red peppers, seeds removed, sliced lengthways into fingers
4 red onions quartered
half small butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into chunks
6-8 cloves garlic, peeled
fresh rosemary needles, or fresh thyme leaves
16 cherry tomatoes
1 cup couscous
4 tbsp pesto
2 tbsp French dressing

Serves 6

  1. Preheat oven to 375. Lightly spray a baking tray and place the aubergine slices on it, brush with a little oil.
  2. Place all other veg in a bowl, drizzle over some olive oil and scatter with herbs. Turn to coat, then place in a roasting tin.
  3. Roast for 20-25 minutes, turn the eggplant slices over. Give the other veg a stir, throw in the garlic cloves and cherry tomatoes and roast for another 10-15 minutes until cooked through.
  4. Meanwhile, prepare the couscous by placing the grains in a bowl and pouring over 1 cup boiling water. Cover and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Fluff the grains with a fork.
  5. Mix together the pesto and French dressing. Place a helping of couscous on each plate and top with the roasted vegetables. Pour some dressing over.
  6. You can top each portion with grated Parmesan cheese, or for a more substantial dish, poach one egg per person for 5 minutes until the yolks are just set and serve on top of the vegetables.


Very quick, very tasty. What more do you want?

4 salmon steaks. For the crust 2/3 cup low fat natural yogurt, small bunch fresh coriander, leaves and stalks finely chopped, 1 garlic clove, crushed, 1/2 tsp each ground cumin, smoked paprika

Serves 4: Mix the crust ingredients together and spread over the salmon steaks. Cook under a pre-heated grill for about 10 minutes, turning once, until fish is cooked through.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Portion Control

One reason so many people in America are gaining weight is because of a lack of knowledge when it comes to portion control. This is something I have really had to learn throughout the last five years of losing weight. Before, I would eat a HUGE bowl of sugar cereal in the morning in one of those huge bowls that seem very common nowadays, which equals to about 2 1/2-3 cups of cereal. Now, I try to follow the recommendations for serving sizes so conveniently located on the nutritional information. I admonish everyone to READ READ READ the nutritional information before you eat. Read what the serving size is. Often we look at a package of something and it says 150 calories and we think "Sweet!" but we don't look at the serving size, which may say 2 oz, and the WHOLE package equals 8 oz-- making the snack to be very high calorie if we consume the whole bag. Make sense?

You don't need to memorize a food list or carry around measuring cups to get a better grasp on serving sizes. Instead, use common visual cues to remind yourself of appropriate serving sizes. How? Many foods match up to everyday objects. For example, a medium pepper is about the size of a baseball and equals one vegetable serving.


This may seem like REALLY small portions but that is because we go to restaurants and they serve us portions that are about 2-3 times bigger than what our body actually NEEDS. So it's all about training your stomach to appreciate what it really needs. One trick I always use is to drink a big glass of water before I eat a meal. It helps me feel full and eat less.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Splenda Whole Wheat Banana bread

I love love LOVE Banana bread but we all know this is normally a very fattening, unhealthy bread to make. Well, I have found a great recipe that is REALLY low cal and full of fiber and whole grains. Just try it out... please?! You won't regret it. It is in my oven right now and it smells YUMMY!!!


    11/3 cups whole wheat flour
    1/2 cup Splenda no-cal granulated
    1 tsp baking powder
    1/2 tsp baking soda
    1/2 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp cinnamon
    11/4 cups mashed bananas
    1 tbsp oil
    1/3 cup skim milk
    1/2 tbsp vinegar
    2 tsp vanilla
    1/4 cup chopped walnuts


Preheat oven to 350
Prepare 9x5 inch loaf pan.
Add vinegar to milk or substitute with low fat buttermilk.
Blend dry ingredients.
Blend wet ingredients.
Pour wet mix into dry, do not overmix.
Add nuts and stir.
Pour into pan and bake until set, aprox. 45 min.
Loaf slices into 8 generous servings.

Number of Servings: 8