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Tag Archives: diet

Pumpkin Spice Protein Balls

Posted on October 21, 2016 by

These can be flattened a bit as cookies too~

A seasonal treat!

A seasonal treat!

 

Ingredients

2 scoops vanilla protein powder (Leaner Living)

¼ cup pumpkin seeds

¼ cup rolled oats

1 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp pumpkin pie spice

½ cup canned pumpkin

1 tsp sugar-free maple syrup

 

Directions

  1. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. Stir to blend.
  2. Add canned pumpkin and syrup. Stir to blend.
  3. Form small (walnut-sized) balls by rolling in in your palms.
  4. Place on plate or tray and chill for 30 minutes until more firm.
  5. Enjoy!

 

Makes 12 balls

Nutrition Facts: (each ball)

Calories 40

Total Fat 2g

Total Carbohydrates 3.5g

Dietary Fiber 1g

Protein 3.5g

 

Print Recipe: Pumpkin Pie Protein Balls

Fresh Finds – Seasonal Selections

Posted on June 27, 2016 by

If, on a hot summer day, you can’t stop eyeing that hunk of watermelon; or you start craving  pumpkin spiced treats in October, you’re eating with a seasonal mind. It’s just intuitive! Holistic medicine and science agree, seasonal eating promotes overall well-being, helps fight infection and may act as a natural whole body cleanse.

This theory has existed for many years in both Indian and Chinese medicine. As the weather shifts, animals behave differently; they eat according to what they can find. Humans used to follow the same pattern but with the ability to preserve fresh foods by canning, drying & freezing, we are able to enjoy most foods in any season. Researchers studying the underlying effects of seasonal eating have found that there is an increase in vitamins and antioxidants in the seasonal fare that isn’t matched by out of season harvest.

raspberriesSummer: During these hot and humid days, think bright colors. Summer foods tend to be colorful reds, pinks, yellows and blues – and tend to be sweet! Staying hydrated in these summer months is important so choose water-filled vegetables and fruits to add to your meals! Berries and melons are fairly low in carbohydrates – add them to salads topped with plenty of protein.  Don’t forget about the herbs in your garden – basil, mint, cilantro, parsley and sage!

Roasted pumpkin and carrot soup with cream .Fall: Welcome to harvest time! Ancient Chinese medicine believed that the body contracts and begins cooling in preparation for the winter. You will find yellow and gold foods in abundance. Root  vegetables and squash (carrots, beets, pumpkins, butternut & acorn squash) are hearty, filling and warming! Cooking methods like baking and roasting are best since these hearty root vegetables can stand up to them, don’t forget to season- sage, thyme, and rosemary are fresh!

cinnamonWinter: With frost in the air, the end of the seasons is in sight! Carrots, turnip, kale, and collard greens are just picked in these cold months! They are perfect for roasting and stewing with warm spices like cinnamon, curry and turmeric. Even though we don’t think of meat as seasonal because our stores are always fully stocked, it is seen as the most warming of foods due to its high nutrient density.

asparagusSpring: With increased sunlight, our tastes reach out to fresher foods. Tender foods like sprouts, greens, asparagus, and chards are back! Steaming and grilling your fresh finds will preserve the flavor of these light vegetables!

Tips & Tricks:
•    Look for reasonably priced produce in the supermarket. In-season prices are lower than out-of- season prices.
•    Think back to seasonal childhood favorites. There’s a reason why Mom always fed you melon in the summer, pumpkin in the fall and beef and barley stew in the winter.
•    Visit your Farmer’s Market on Saturday morning!

Contributed by Lindsey Bryan, CFWLS Summer Extern

Low Carb Lasagna with Zucchini!

Posted on May 06, 2016 by

Even the kids love it!

zucchini_lasagnaIngredients

4 medium zucchini

1 lb. ground beef (or use turkey for less fat)

2 cups baby Portobello mushrooms, sliced

1 medium onion, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 jar pasta sauce (look for low sugar)

8 oz. tomato sauce

1 tsp dried basil

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp fennel seeds, crushed

1 egg, slightly beaten

15 oz fat-free ricotta cheese

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese


Directions

  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Slice zucchini lengthwise into ¼ inch planks. Spray each side with cooking spray and place them on a wire rack over a baking sheet. Broil for 10-12 minutes on each side or until lightly browned.
  3. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees.
  4. Brown ground turkey, onion, garlic and mushrooms in large skillet. Remove from heat and stir in seasonings, pasta sauce and tomato sauce.
  5. Combine egg and ricotta cheese in small bowl.
  6. Spread 1 cup of meat sauce into greased 9×13 baking dish. Top with zucchini slices and half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Sprinkle with ¾ cup of the mozzarella cheese. Repeat the process ending with sauce on top.
  7. Bake uncovered for 20 minutes. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and bake an additional 10-15 minutes or until cheese is melted.
  8. Let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.

 

Makes 12 servings

Nutrition Facts:

Calories 209

Total Fat 8g

Total Carbohydrates 15g

Dietary Fiber 3g

Protein 20g

Print Recipe: Zucchini Lasagna

Crunchy Almond Chicken

Posted on March 18, 2016 by

Great crunch without the carbs!

crunchy almond chickenIngredients
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup almonds
1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
½ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
1 cup almond flour
2 tsp water
2 eggs

Directions
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
2. Line large baking sheet with parchment or aluminum.
3. Crush almonds in food processor to a fine mix. Pour into shallow dish.
4. Add salt, pepper, cayenne, garlic powder and almond flour to crushed nuts and blend well.
5. Whisk eggs and water in shallow dish.
6. Dip each chicken breast into egg mixture and dredge in crushed nut mixture. Coat each side evenly.
7. Place each piece of chicken on lined baking sheet.
8. Bake at 375 degrees for 30-40 minutes (until juices run clear).
Makes 4 large servings

Nutrition Facts:
Calories 383
Total Fat 33g
Total Carbohydrates 13g
Dietary Fiber 7g
Protein 39g

Print Recipe Crunchy Almond Chicken

Helping Your Overweight Child

Posted on March 14, 2016 by

active father son The rates of childhood obesity have tripled in the past 3 decades. Today, 1 in 3 American kids are overweight or obese. Our changes in lifestyle have led to this sad epidemic. We’re eating food on the run in lieu of sitting as a family for a home-cooked meal. Video games have replaced exercise, PE has been reduced at schools to 2 or 3 times a week, and portion sizes have tripled.

Children are now facing serious health issues that, in the past, were primarily associated with adults. These health risks include: asthma, diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep problems, heart disease, and more! That’s a big burden for a child to deal with. Parents of overweight children are often frustrated and searching for answers.

The first step to helping your overweight child is to make an appointment with your child’s pediatrician for a check-up. It’s important to find out if they are clinically obese and if there are any underlying health issues. Then, follow these guidelines:

*MAKE THEM FEEL LOVED: Above all, make them feel loved no matter what size they are. Their self- esteem is often lacking and they feel stressed and anxious.

*EDUCATE: Teach your child about proper nutrition, how to read labels, and even how to cook. Explain the importance of exercising every day.

*INVOLVE THE WHOLE FAMILY: When a family member has a chronic illness, it affects the entire family. Likewise, if one of the kids is obese the family is impacted. Everyone needs to be encouraging, supportive, and eat home-cooked meals together. Challenge the whole family to eat healthy in order to set a good example.

*NUTRITION: Ensure they eat breakfast every day, drink lots of water, refrain from sugary drinks, limit sweets, and consume sufficient protein.

*EXERCISE: Encourage your child to fit in60 minutes of moderate intensity activities every day. Participate as a family:

*Sign up for a Family-friendly 5K race/walk
*Take the family on vacations where they can hike, ski, climb, or swim
*Sign your child up for a sport
*Take fitness/dance classes together

*LIMIT ELECTRONICS: Use electronics as positive reinforcement after they’ve completed their homework and gotten some exercise. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests no more than 2 hours a day for electronics (TV, IPAD, computer, etc…). Studies have shown that children with TV’s in their bedrooms are more likely to be obese.

As a parent you have the responsibility of setting a good example for your kids by eating healthy and exercising regularly.  Help them lead a healthy, active lifestyle and provide them with love and support.

For more support and advice on helping your overweight child, listen to Dr. Clark’s podcast interview with Childhood Obesity specialist, Dr. Wendy Sinclair at: https://cfwls.com/blog/bouncing-back-from-childhood-obesity/

Chicken with Mushrooms and Raspberries

Posted on February 12, 2016 by

Don’t be shy – you’re going to love it!

Raspberry Mushroom ChickenIngredients

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Salt & pepper

1 Tbls olive oil

4 cloves garlic, crushed

1 large shallot, chopped

1 c chicken broth

½ cup dry red wine

8 oz baby bella mushrooms

1 cup fresh raspberries

1 Tbls butter

1 Tbls balsamic vinegar

1 tsp grated lemon zest

 

 

Directions

  1. Season chicken with salt & pepper.
  2. Heat skillet over medium heat and add olive oil.
  3. Sear chicken on each side for about 3 minutes. Remove chicken from pan and set aside.
  4. Add garlic and shallot to skillet and cook over medium heat for 1 minute.
  5. Add chicken broth and wine, cook until slightly reduced or about 10 minutes.
  6. Add sliced mushrooms and lower heat to a simmer.
  7. Return chicken to skillet, cover and simmer until chicken is cooked through or about 10 minutes.
  8. Add butter, balsamic vinegar and lemon zest. Stir to blend.
  9. Toss raspberries into and allow to warm about 1 minute.

 

Makes 4 servings

Nutrition Facts:

Calories 258

Total Fat 11.5g

Total Carbohydrates 6g

Dietary Fiber 2g

Protein 38g

 

Print Recipe: Raspberry Mushroom Chicken

Adapted from Trisha Yearwood recipe on Food Network

CFWLS Chicken Soup

Posted on January 22, 2016 by

Taste tested…Doctor approved!

CFWLS_chicken_soupIngredients:

1 box/7 packets protein chicken noodle soup mix
48 oz. chicken broth
2 pints sliced mushrooms
1 rotisserie chicken
8 oz. butter
Salt
Pepper
8 oz water

Directions:

1. Set crock-pot to low.
2. Mix chicken broth, water and all 7 packets chicken noodle soup in crock-pot.
3. Saute mushrooms in butter, salt and pepper to taste.
4. Saute celery with mushrooms, cook until soft.
5. Remove skin from chicken and discard. Pick all meat from the chicken, and chop or shred into bite sized pieces. Add to vegetable saute.
6. Cook vegetables and chicken together for a few minutes and add to the crock-pot of chicken soup.
7. Salt and pepper to taste. Additional seasonings may be added to taste.
8. Cook on high for 1-2 hrs.

Great served with cheddar protein chips!

Nutritional info:

Cal 235
Fat 12.5
Carbs 3.6
Fiber .3
Pro 25.5

Makes 16 servings (about 1 cup per serving)

Print Recipe: Chicken Soup CFWLS

 

 

3 Significant Reasons to Add Spice to Your Diet!

Posted on January 18, 2016 by

garlicThe use of spices and herbs dates back as far as early Egypt (2100 BC). Onions and garlic were used as medicine to maintain health. Then, they became essential in the embalming process to preserve against decay. In India, the spices enjoyed today have been used for thousands of years. Spices and herbs also played an important role in ancient Greek medicine. Hippocrates said great care should be given to the preparation of herbs for medicinal use. The numerous benefits of herbs and spices continue to be recognized and appreciated today.

basilThere are three significant reasons why herbs and spices have been savored by many societies for so long:
1. Weight Loss/Management: herbs and spices can decrease the amount of calories, salt, fat, and sugar without sacrificing flavor.
2. Health Maintenance: they help to protect against many chronic health conditions.
3. Flavor: they add flavor, texture, taste, aroma, and color to food.

Here’s a list of some of the more commonly used spices/herbs and their benefits:

Basil: often considered the ‘king of herbs’, has been used to treat stress, asthma and diabetes in India for centuries
Cilantro: rich in iron and fiber, disease-fighting phytonutrient
Rosemary: improves memory
Turmeric: anti-inflammatory that could stop cancer from growing
Cinnamon: antioxidant, lowers blood sugar
Nutmeg: contains antibacterial compounds
Cumin: anti-inflammatory that could help stop tumor growth
Cayenne Pepper: helps burn fat—boost metabolism
Ginger: diuretic, hinders cholesterol absorption, anti-nausea
Black Pepper: boosts metabolism and helps digestion
Oregano: natural source of omega-3 fatty acids

cinnamonThere are many ways to use herbs and spices in your favorite dishes. Cinnamon is a delicious addition to protein shakes. Chicken and curry pair well together. A delicious recipe for salad dressing: allspice (1 part), cinnamon (1 part), and black pepper (1/2 parts) mixed with olive oil and heated up. Turmeric adds color and flavor to veggies. Cilantro enhances the taste of salsa and guacamole.

Herbs and spices make food healthier and tastier. They add no calories and contain no sugar. So what are you waiting for? Enjoy your food like never before!

Chicken Ole’

Posted on January 15, 2016 by

Chicken_OleQuick & easy Mexican chicken dish – serve with a side of black beans!

Ingredients
4 chicken breast halves
1 clove garlic, minced
Pinch of salt
Pinch of fresh ground pepper
Pinch of cumin
1 cup salsa
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Directions
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Heat skillet to medium heat. Rub chicken breasts with seasoning mixture and place in hot skillet. Cook until browned on both sides and no longer pink, 10-15 minutes.
3. Transfer chicken to a baking dish coated with cooking spray. Top with salsa and shredded cheese. Bake until cheese is bubbly and starting to brown.

Makes 4 servings

Nutrition Facts:
Calories 264
Total Fat 11g
Total Carbohydrates 4.9g
Dietary Fiber 1.1g
Protein 35.4g

Print recipe Chicken Ole

Adapted from allrecipes.com

 

How Healthy Are Your Holiday Traditions?

Posted on November 30, 2015 by

Holiday traditions are often based on recipes that have been handed down through generations and those memories that cling to the scents and sights of particular foods. Why should this year be any different? You’ve sifted through your favorite family recipes and all you see is sugar, butter & flour, right?  Don’t get discouraged – by making some substitutions, you may be able to enjoy them after all!

Using artificial sweeteners is tholiday_traditionshe most obvious switch. It seems like there are new options on the shelf every week but, not all sweeteners are the same!  If the dish you are making will not be cooked or baked, you are safe to use your favorite no-cal sweetener.  Baking or cooking is another matter – Splenda is one of the few that holds up under heat. Use the type that is specifically made for baking and cooking as it measures differently than what’s in the little yellow packets.

You might be able to cut back on the butter or shortening in some of the recipes.  Butter used for cooking shares its flavor well and you may not miss the extra fat.  Applesauce or other pureed fruits are a common substitute for butter and oil in recipes but watch out for the extra carbohydrates, it may not be worth the switch. Using a low-fat dairy product in place of the heavier one is generally okay but you may notice a bit of difference in the texture of your dish.

Flour may be one of the trickiest to switch out and you may have to do a bit of experimenting before you are truly happy with the results, but there are many options on the market today.  Flour made from nuts has a forth of the carbohydrates that wheat flour has and has the benefit of added protein as well. Soy flour is a great option too, it contains just one third of the carbs in all-purpose flour. You can substitute (both nut & soy flour) 1/4 – 1/2 of the amount of flour in most muffins, cakes and cookies.  Whole wheat flour has more fiber than white flour so it lowers your effective carbohydrate count but cannot always be substituted one for one in recipes. Crushed nuts or some of our protein Biscotti work great as crusts for pies or cheesecakes!

There are several low-carb baking mixes available either online or in health food stores. The reviews are pretty good but I have not tried any of them.

Check out the recipes that we have already tested!  Many of them may be similar to what you are trying to recreate.  You will find a great selection on our blog at www.cfwls.com/blog/, website (search recipes) or on our Pinterest page at www.pinterest.com/cfwlsva/.