Monday, July 21, 2008

Skinny Up Your Summer BBQ

So, yesterday I had my family 21st birthday party at my house. Now, being the health nut that I am, I requested healthy appetizers, entrees, and desserts naturally. However, for the first time, all the food was finished off and EVERYONE seemed to love it. (Reminder: This is extremely rare for my large food-loving family)

So, how do you make a healthy BBQ, yet still manage to keep the taste? Here's some simple, little tricks for your next summer feast:

1. Choose healthy, limited appetizers, so people can save room for the main course.


*shrimp cocktail

*fruit kabobs (layer various fresh fruit with small cheese wedges)

*healthy bean dip (layer low fat sour cream, salsa, cilantro, beans and reduced fat cheese in a dish and serve with baked tortilla chips)

2. Offer various low-cal drinks


*Have a HUGE pitcher of water on hand to keep everyone hydrated 'n' healthy

*Light iced tea

*"Healthy" Margaritas: Use Sprite Zero and Crystal Light Lemonade to reduce the sugar drastically

3. Substitute the typical burgers and dogs for yummy kabobs.


*shrimp and tomato kabobs

*chicken and pineapple kabobs

*onion and peppers kabobs

Tip: Try different seasonings and light marinades on each one, to get new, delicious tastes!

4. Offer a healthy dessert so guests don't overdue it

*sugar free jello layered with fruit and light cool whip

*fruit salad

*itty-bitty brownie wedges

Tip: You don't have to cut out all your guilty pleasures; just keep the serving sizes small.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Bloating Remedy

If you're not lucky enough to be blessed with a perfect digestive system, you most likely suffer from the occasional (or quite frequent) case of the bloat, like me.

After every big meal I consume, especially late at night, I become extremely uncomfortable and my stomach puffs up like a balloon. I find myself sprawled out on a couch, helplessly shoving tums in my mouth in hope they will cure my problem.

Wouldn't it be nice if I could just pop my huge gut after every meal, I think to myself.

Well, unfortunately, that's not possible, but there are a few natural remedies for this common problem among women.

First of all, you may want to reconsider some of the foods you eat: you may have a food allergy to lactose, wheat, or maybe even some sorts of fruit. If you're like me, I have to limit my wheat intake.

Secondly, drink tons of water to drain out all those bad toxins. It may seem ironic to drink MORE water, when you are already feeling bloating, but drinking water actually drains out your system and allows food to digest more easily.

Tea with lemon has been a long believed cure of bloating. Sip it slowly, and your tummy should feel relieved quickly.

Lastly, if none of the above seem to be working, I recently found a little recipe online at, which claims to help with stomach bloating.

Ingredients: 1 tsp grated fresh ginger pulp; 1 tsp lime juice

Directions: Combine the ingredients and consume after eating a meal!

Good luck my fellow bloaters!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

How To: Slim Down Your Java

You may not realize this, but your morning dose of coffee could be packin' on tons more calories than you think. Just a medium Coffee Coolata from Dunkin Donuts packs on over 400 calories! (yikes)

And it gets worse: A Starbucks medium Frappuccino has over 500 calories and a whopping 170 grams of fat! Many coffee-lovers slurp these drinks down in a jiffy, without realizing the damaging effects they can have on our bods.

So, in order to get your daily caffeine dose without the fatty consequences, follow these simple tips:

1. Order your drink with skim or soy milk, rather than 2%.

2. Skip the cream...milk tastes just as good.

3. Go for sweet n' low or splenda rather than sugar to cut the cals.

4. Order a smaller size, and drink slowly. This way you'll actually get to savor and enjoy your beverage.

My Slim Favorites:

*Medium Dunkin Donuts Flavored Coffee with a little skim milk and sweet n' low (only about 40 cals-and that's with the milk!)

*Medium Dunkin Donuts Iced Latte Lite (70 cals)

*Starbucks tall light coffee frappuccino (only 9o cals and 5 grams of fat compared to the whopping 500 above!)

*Starbucks grande iced skinny vanilla latte (8o cals and 0 grams of fat)

So slurp on you coffee lovin' gals...just do it the healthy way.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Do This Today: Go Blueberry Picking!

It's summertime 'n it's getting hot outside, but that shouldn't stop you from taking the season to its full advantage.

Today I went blueberry picking and had such a blast! Together, with my mom and friend, we picked 10.5 pounds of berries for only $20.00. Now that's what I call a bargain!

Here's some tips for the blueberry-pickers:

1. Wear lots of sunscreen (While there may be many bushes, they are short and definitely don't shield ya from the strong rays)

2. Dress comfy and light...and especially make sure you're wearin' comfy shoes.

3. Go earlier in the morning to beat the mid-day heat wave

4. Bring a bottle of water along with you to stay hydrated

5. Have fun with it! (and eat a few as you go)

Saturday, July 12, 2008

How To: Beat a Workout Plateau

You’ve been killing yourself at the gym lately, spending hour’s everyday on the treadmill and weight machines. Yet, the weight won’t budge. It seems like you’ve developed a little case of the weight loss plateau, something that happens when your body gets used to a workout.

Our bodies are very efficient systems in that they burn just enough calories to keep us going. However, the body is very smart as well, and when it becomes accustomed to a workout routine, it no longer works as hard to burn those cals.

But good news for you: you can fix the problem easily! You just have to change up your daily routine, so you’ll work harder and sweat a whole lot more.

For instance, if you’re a treadmill gal, try out the elliptical. Or, if you’ve been doing the same old sprints every day, try doing intervals instead. (Steady pace for 5 minutes; sprint for 1, repeat)

Another idea is to try some of the classes offered at your local gym. Aerobics, kickboxing, spinning, yoga and Pilates are all great, dynamic classes that can get you into shape fast. And, they’ll keep you having fun, so it won’t be such a chore to workout.

Changing up your routines and trying new things will get your heart rate back into action, and you’ll start seeing results before you know it. Good luck!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Sushi: A Diet Yes or No-No?

Just this past year, I have become extremely fond of the exotic dish: sushi. Before this year, I envisioned it as some scary, foreign raw "thing" that I would never dare place inside my mouth. However, after having a taste, I've become completely in love.

The only question is: does our diet love this exotic food as well?

The answer is YES: While sushi is high in carbohydrates from the white rice the surrounds the outside, it has many health benefits. The fish in the middle is extremely low in calories, containing fatty acids that help trim our waistlines. Also, since sushi often comes in rolls of 6 or 12 pieces, you don't have to finish the entire roll, and it definitely fills you up fast!

To make this delicacy even more diet-friendly, request your sushi with brown rice, which is now offered at certain restaurants. Also, if you order a more plain roll, such as the California or Tuna Roll (without the sauce), the calorie content will be lower, since it doesn't contain any extra creamy, fatty toppings.

So, go on girl: eat your sushi up and enjoy!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

10 Things to Be Happy About Right Now

1. Blueberry-picking season has begun.

2. The ol’ grill is now back in action (from steaks, to pork chops, to kebobs)

3. The fireflies are out again…and yes it’s ok if you still hold onto that inner child and catch a few at night.

4. Tanning season is here…therefore women can finally put self-tanners (yuck, orange looking!) and tanning beds to rest.

5. 4th of July firework shows continue throughout the entire month of July.

6. You can buy watermelon on sale in bulk, even it‘s most likely gone by the next day.

7. Corn on the cob never tasted so damn good.

8 Short dresses and skirts are now acceptable to go out in…and Uggs have been put away for the fall at last. (well, lets hope)

9. The beach…need I even say more?

10. Guys are starting to strut around with their shirts off, in minimal clothing.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

5 Healthy Summertime Treat Favorites

It's summertime, and we're all tryin' to stay slim and fit into those bikinis. But, that doesn't mean we also have to give up our fav sweet treats. Here are some yummy summer favorites that won't bust your wasteline!

1. Homemade Frozen Yogurt

-Mix 1 cup Light and Fit Yogurt with 1/2 cup berries and 1/4 banana. Blend together and freeze to create a yummy frozentreat!

2. No Sugar Added Fudgiscle Bars (For only 50 calories, they're both delicious and slimming!)

3. Frozen berries or grapes -perfect for a quick late night bite! ( I love strawberries or raspberries)

4. Skinny Cow Mint Ice Cream Sandwiches (Low cal and oh so filling)

5. Sugar Free Pudding or Jello topped with Light Cool Whip (Mmm...)

*Hint: I LOVE the chocolate flavored sugarfree pudding.

Just Breath

So as I sit here in my bed, doped up on painkillers and looking like a puffed-up chipmunk from my wisdom teeth surgery the other day, I actually for the first time in my life am able to simply relax.

Relaxation has become a foreign activity for me, as I’m one of those girls that always feels the need to go, go go! I hate being lazy, can’t sit in the same place for too long of a time, and get complete anxiety when I have to shut my mouth.

However, these past few days have introduced me to utter relaxation, something that is slowly growing on me. Since the surgery, I have had absolutely no commitments, I can eat pudding and watch Sex and The City all day long, and silence is allowed, even recommended for that matter. (for my jaw can’t open much anyway)

Now, while I know you all aren’t going through surgery or anything extreme this summer, (well, maybe some of you are) these last few days have taught me the importance of just sitting back and taking a few long deep breaths.

Life is far too short to run around all day like a chicken with its head cut off. Sometimes, we all need to just breathe, relax and take in life.

We all deserve a couple hours a day to just simply be. And whether that includes Sex and the City reruns or Ben and Jerry’s ice cream is completely up to you.