Archive of ‘Health/Diet’ category

Avocado Salad

avocado-saladThis is one of my family’s favorite dishes.  My sister made it for me once and I think that it took me all of a day to make it for myself after I got home from visiting her.  It’s wonderfully fresh and everything in to is good for you!  How do you beat that?

 

AnneOpinion

The ingredients are very simple, which is what, I think, helps make this salad so good.  There’s nothing getting in the way of all of the great flavors.  I like to use either fresh corn (from corn on the cob cooked this way) or a high quality frozen corn that I let defrost on the counter.

Here’s a tip for cutting the tomato.  Cut the tomato in half and gently squeeze it over a bowl or sink.  This will get rid of most of the seeds and mess that can come with tomatoes.

The lime juice helps to brighten the flavors and keeps the avocado from going brown.  The garlic and the hot sauce are added to taste so mix it up, try it out and add from there to get the flavor you want.

I generally make this to go with a Mexican themed dinner and serve it with tortilla chips.  My family eats a ton of it this way.  Everyone loves it!  I personally love to have a bowl of this salad with some grilled chicken for dinner.  So good!

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Avocado Salad
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Avocado Salad
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Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Cute the avocado and the tomato into bite sized pieces. Slice the onions and drain the black beans. Mix all of the ingredients together, season with garlic and hot sauce to taste. Let it sit for 1 hour before serving. Serve as a side dish or as a dip for tortilla chips.
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Dr. Oz Three Day Detox

3-day-detoxThree years ago I was participating in a Biggest Loser contest.  I had hit a plateau and was looking for something to get my body going again.  I heard about Dr Oz’s Three Day Detox Cleanse.  I spoke with a couple of friends who had tried it and had lost 5-7 pounds in the three days and so I decided to give it a try.  I have done it once a year since then and have had good results.  It consists of four shakes a day.  A Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner shake and you’re choice of having one of them again as an afternoon snack.  Each evening you take a detox bath.  There are also some vitamins that you take and it calls for a cup of green tea each morning.  It’s very simple and straight forward.  Here is a link to the one page explanation of the cleanse.  I love that it has a grocery list at the top and has all of the recipes and the schedule on one page.

AnneOpinion

These drinks need a really good blender.  The first time I did this I borrowed my friend’s Blendtec.  I liked it so much that I bought one for myself.  The ingredients that I feel like really need a powerful blender are celery, apples, kale and cucumber.

The breakfast shake is definitely my favorite.  I looked forward to it each morning and normally will have it for my extra shake.  I don’t drink tea, so I never have had the green tea while doing this cleanse.  I don’t feel like skipping it has hurt me.

The lunch shake is huge.  It normally takes my a while to drink it all.  It’s not bad, but I wouldn’t say it’s good either.  I didn’t realize how strong the flavor of celery was until I had one of these shakes.  Also, by the third day my throat is usually feels raw from the high acidly level in it.

The dinner shake is good, but it does have a kick from the cayenne pepper that is in it.

I feel full everyday.  In fact, some times I feel like I’m forcing myself to have the fourth shake because I’m not hungry.  I also normally exercise one or two of the days. This last time I felt like I didn’t want to on Day 3 because I wanted more energy during the day.  That reminds me, make sure your going to be able to get plenty of sleep!  The more sleep that you have, the easier it is to stick with the cleanse.

The Detox Bath-  First off, make sure you have 4 lbs of Epson salts for the three days.  You’ll use all of it.  Second, this may seem like it’s going to be the reward of the cleanse, but it’s not.  For the last half of the bath you will be sweating like crazy, everywhere.  This is good though because it’s pulling lots of toxins out of you.

Mentally this cleanse is very doable.  The first day you’re excited to do it.  The second day seems like a drudge, but you know that you only have one day left and the last day, you can see the end in sight.  You will miss chewing immensely.  I was surprised how much I really just wanted to be able to chew my food.

Weight loss wise- I lost 6 lbs the first time I did it and 5 lbs the second.  This last time I only lost 3 lbs, but I have already been working on losing weight for months and I think that contributed to my ability to lose this time.

This cleanse is a great way to quickly take off a quick few pounds or help get you off a weight loss plateau.  Let me know if you have any questions!  I feel like I’m at expert at this after doing it three time. 🙂

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10 Diet Foods I Need

10-diet-foodsDieting is something that I am pretty much an expert at.  I’ve been doing it on and off since I was 10.  I’ve tried many, many different diets over the years, and I’ve found what works for me.  It’s pretty basic: diet and exercise.  I don’t “cut” anything out of my diet.  I have been through so many trends over the years saying that you need to cut out fats or cut out carbs or cut out grains.  I’m sure that in a few years there will be something new.  I’ve decided that moderation in all things is what works best for me.  I try to eat whole grains, veggies, fruits, and lean proteins; things that are low in fat and/or contain good fats.  I count calories; like every single one.  I use the My Fitness Pal app to help me keep track.  It’s amazing how quickly calories add up when you keep track of them.  You also find very quickly that you don’t want to waste your calories on things that aren’t going to fill you up or make you feel good.  I’m not even tempted to eat that piece of chocolate cake or French fries when I know that they will cost me 1/3 of my daily calories.

I love food and need to have things that I enjoy eating on hand to make sure that I can stick with my goals.  Sometimes I make things that I love that are nutritious and low in calories like Peanut Butter and Honey Balls and Brownie Batter Oatmeal, but sometimes it’s nice to have something that is already made and I can just enjoy it with little or no prep work.  I have put together a list of foods I have found that I love to eat and help keep me on track.  I love all of these products, and I have not been compensated by anyone to share my views.

AnneOpinion

Kodak Minute Muffins- These muffins are whole wheat and packed with nutrition.  My favorite is the blueberry.  They work great as a warm “grab and go” breakfast.  I love to have them for breakfast, a snack or a dessert.  You just add water and cook in the microwave for one minute.

Cheerios- These aren’t just baby snacks.  If you haven’t tried them in a long time, you need to.  They are really good.  A one cup serving is only 100 calories.  This means that I can have 1 1/2 cups with a cup of Cashew milk for 175 calories.  That’s music to this cereal girl’s ears.

Unsweetened Cashew Milk- I loves this stuff.  It tastes good, it’s thick and creamy and it’s only 25 calories in one cup.  Top that off with it having more calcium than dairy milk = winner, winner chicken dinner!

Pre-Packed Salads- I don’t have any particular brand that I like of these.  I get them in the produce section of my grocery store, and I love to keep a couple on hand.  They come with a salad in the bottom and separated on the top is four things to mix into the salad, and dressing. For example, the Santa Fe comes with chicken, cheese, roasted corn and red peppers, crushed tortilla chips, and a spicy southwest ranch dressing.  These are perfect when I want something special (fill in restaurant/fast food) for lunch.

Multi Berry Oatmeal (from Trader Joe’s)-Besides being delicious, this oatmeal is full of nutrition with wheat, rye, chia seeds, flax seeds and barley in addition to the oatmeal.  It has a little bit of a nuttier flavor than regular oatmeal (which I love) and has strawberries, raspberries and blueberries. I love that it stays with me for the morning and I don’t feel hungry an hour later. 

Casein Protein Powder- Speaking of feeling hungry an hour later, that is the reason that I’ve switched from whey protein powder to casein.  Both of them are dairy based protein powder.  I have read the difference between the two described this way.  Whey protein metabolizes like skim milk and casein like cottage cheese.  This means that if you have just finished weight lifting and you want something to begin to repair your muscles, whey is best because it all goes to work right away.  You will also be hungry an hour later.  The casein, on the other hand, breaks down slowly giving you a full feeling for a longer time.  If I have just finished lifting I like to use half a scoop of each to get the benefits of both, but if I’m having a protein shake for dinner, it’s casein all the way.

Kind Bars-These bars are packed with whole nuts and sometimes dried fruit and chocolate.  Can’t forget the chocolate. 🙂  There are a number of varieties that you can get.  My favorite is the Dark Chocolate Cherry Cashew.  I love the crunch of the nuts, the sweetness from the chocolate, and the tart contrast that the dried cherries and cranberries bring.

PB2- If you love peanut butter and are having to watch your fat and/or calorie intake, this is the product for you.  I normally use it to add a peanut butter flavor to things.  My favorite is to add two tablespoons to my chocolate protein drink, along with 5 cubes of ice, and mix it in the blender to make a chocolate/peanut butter milkshake good enough to help me resist eating that Reese’s calling my name.  I do sometimes mix it up as peanut butter (just add water) to put on pancakes or toast with some bananas and lite syrup (I like Mrs. Butterworth’s), but it’s not the real thing, at all.  Don’t think that it will be the same as your creamy, thick and full of fat peanut butter because you will be incredibly disappointed.  That said, it’s made with real peanuts and brings a completely authentic peanut butter taste to whatever I add it to.

Chobani Flips- These Greek yogurts come with a fun corner of crunchy goodies that you pour into your yogurt just before you eat them.  I feel like I’m eating a delightful dessert when I have one.  My favorite is Salted Caramel Crunch (caramel flavored yogurt with pretzels and chocolate) and a close second is Key Lime Crumble (lime flavored yogurt with white chocolate and crunchy graham crackers).

Clif Z Bars- These are marketed as being for kids, but adults can eat them too.  Along with being all organic and good for your body, they have less calories than a similar product geared toward adults.  I like the Chocolate Chip and the Iced Oatmeal best, but the Chocolate Brownies isn’t far behind.  At around 130 calories a bar, they’re a perfect snack to keep with you “on the go.”

So that’s it.  I hope that you got a new idea (or two) of a new food you can try.  If you have something that you love, please tell me about it!  I know that I’m always on the lookout for new recommendations of tasty things that I can eat when watching my calories and nutrition.

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