Friday, December 31, 2010

Today Only...One Year Subscription for FITNESS Magazine only $2.99

Yay!  Another magazine I have been wanting to grab.  Today only, Dec 31st, has a 1 Year Subscription to Fitness Magazine for only $2.99!  Just make sure to use promo code FITNESS or it will show the price of $19.99.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

One Year SHAPE Magazine subscription for only $3.99--Hurry!

Copy & Paste the link below to get your One Year subscription to SHAE mag for only $2.99.   This is an awesome deal!!!   If for some reason it does not show it as $3.99...enter "SHAPE" as a promo code.  YAY!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Happy 1st Birthday!

This blog is officially ONE YEAR OLD!!!!   Thanks for everyone that has supported the blog with comments, suggestions & feedback.   Here's to another great year!  :)

Rethink the New Year's Resolution!

"It's time to rethink your image- of the New Year's Resolution.
Too often, I hear my friends talking about how they plan to start living healthier after the first of the year. But they're putting off their healthy-living goals to the point where they may be setting themselves up for failure: a 2009 study from the University of Hertfordshire in the United Kingdom found that more than 75 percent of New Year's resolution followers gave up. So who had the success stories? The people who broke down their goals into small, achievable steps.
Your life isn't an experiment or a fantasy-it's an investment in your future. You've heard it a million times: If you fuel yourself with junk and bad habits, you won't have the reserves to draw on for energy and good health. Consider each day an opportunity to invest in good habits, so you'll have stamina and great health to withdraw. You can't lose. Who wants to sit at home while the rest of the gang goes out to play?
And it's not just all about you. Do you want to be the parent or grandparent who sits on the sidelines, or the one who creates lasting memories for your kids or grandchildren by riding a bicycle right alongside them? Today, you can make your move so the dream of a long, active life becomes a reality.
Here are seven ways to push the reset button on your healthy habits-starting now. Even if you're already on a healthy track, there's always room for improvement.
1. Sleep It Off.  No, not your New Year's Eve hangover. Your sluggish metabolism. A 2009 study from the University of Chicago found that people who don't get a full night's sleep are more likely to gain weight and have more difficulty losing body fat when they are dieting.  

Sleep experts say the most effective way to improve your sleep is to stick to a regular bedtime and regular wake-up time-even on the weekends. Ideally, your bedroom should be dark, cool and quiet. And move distracting, light-generating electronics like computers and TV sets out of your sleeping zone.
2. Drink Smarter. Ditch the conventional wisdom that your daily fluid intake should only consist of water. Drink juice, green tea or coffee if you want to-but be mindful of the calories. A fizzy Vitamin-C powder added to water may satisfy a soda urge. And branch out-I'm a huge fan of freshly-juiced green drinks made from spinach and kale. Note: You are not allowed to knock it until you try it.
3. Lose the hidden pounds?  We can't underestimate the importance of elimination. To keep your colon healthy, increase your fiber intake to 25 grams a day. I'm also a fan of probiotics for regularity and increased vitality, and downing a fiber drink (yes, those) can actually help your body break down the fat in fat cells.
4. Make It A 5-Veggie Day.  Every day. And get creative with it: If the kale juice seems unappealing, steam them and add a splash of olive oil to a batch (or some collard greens), and you'll quickly change your tune. The darkest, leafy greens help keep your bones strong, so don't skimp.
5. Shrug Off Sugar.  Every time I cut back on refined sugars, my energy level rises and stays there. It's easy to fall into the trap of grabbing a sugary snack for a quick boost, but the crash that follows is never fun. Simple substitutions like choosing a piece of fruit over a glass of juice or sparkling water over soda can do wonders for your mood, energy levels, and waistline: A study of more than 50,000 nurses found that women who had just one sugary soda or glass of juice a day weighed more than those who drank less than one a month.
6. Grab Different Grains. So many people have gluten sensitivities that wreak havoc on their digestive systems. Not every food that contains the word "wheat" is a great choice for everyone.   Choose purer grain choices like steel-cut oat meal, quinoa and brown rice.  And don't be afraid to mix it up a bit, instead of using bread for sandwiches, wrap your lunch up in large lettuce leaves.  You'll love the crisp, fresh flavor. 
7. Shake It Up. I rarely travel without a blender, because protein shakes are a cornerstone of my daily diet. I like the Hamilton Beech single serving blender that has a convenient travel lid, then I add a protein powder that's low in sugar and mix it with frozen berries, soy, low-fat, or almond milk, some flaxseed oil, and swap it out for at least one meal a day.  Another option is to seek out a great local juice bar for your shakes, either way it's a delightful breakfast, post-workout snack, or sweet-tooth-satisfier."
I hope these give you some great ideas how to recommit to your health in 2011.  Don't forget to take it a month at a time so you don't end up being one of those New Year's people who only focuses on results every January!
Have a healthy and active New Year!

~Mindy Buxton--Health/Fitness Coach~

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas to you!!

I would like to wish you all a very MERRY CHRISTMAS & a happy/healthy NEW YEAR!!!!  :)

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Arctic Chocolate Delight

Scoopy Arctic Chocolate Delight --> PER SERVING (1/2 recipe, 1 bowl): 162 calories, 2.5g fat, 115mg sodium, 33g carbs, 0.5g fiber,
16.5g sugars, 0.5g protein -- PointsPlus™ value 4*

Grab a spoon, leave your mittens, and get ready for a chilly excursion to the bottom of your dessert bowl.... YEE-HAAAA!

2 cups Cool Whip Free, thawed
One 25-calorie packet hot cocoa mix (like Swiss Miss Diet or Nestlé Fat Free)
1 standard-sized peppermint candy cane, lightly crushed, divided

In a medium bowl, combine Cool Whip with cocoa mix. Mix thoroughly, until uniform in color. Gently stir in half of the crushed candy cane.

Divide mixture between 2 small bowls. Evenly top each bowl with remaining crushed candy cane. Freeze for 1 to 2 hours. Enjoy!


HG FYI: The fat in this recipe comes from the trace amounts in each serving of the Cool Whip.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

HG's Candyland Peppermint Pie

Mint Condition! 

Combining the seasonal goodness of peppermint with the year-round goodness of chocolate, this pie is AMAZING. Warning: If you alert your holiday guests that this creamy treat is low in fat and calories, they might fall over and knock down some of your decorations.
4 sheets (16 crackers) chocolate graham crackers
2 tbsp. light whipped butter or light buttery spread (like Brummel & Brown

1/2 cup fat-free sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup fat-free milk
1 small (4-serving) box Jell-O Sugar Free Fat Free Vanilla Instant pudding mix
3 cups Cool Whip Free, thawed
3 tbsp. mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 standard-sized peppermint candy canes, lightly crushed, divided
Optional topping: Fat Free Reddi-wip

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

To make the crust, crush graham crackers in a food processor or blender (or place in large sealable bag and crush with a meat mallet). Transfer crumbs to a bowl and set aside.

Place butter in a small microwave-safe bowl and microwave until melted, about 15 seconds. Add to the bowl of graham cracker crumbs and mix until uniform.

Spray a pie pan with nonstick spray. Evenly distribute crust mixture along the bottom of the pie pan, using your hands or a flat utensil to firmly press and form the crust. Press it into the edges and up along the sides of the pan.

Bake crust in the oven until firm, 8 - 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.

To make the filling, combine condensed milk, milk, and pudding mix in a large bowl. Mix well. Fold in Cool Whip until smooth. Gently stir in chocolate chips and about 3/4 of the candy cane pieces.

Once crust has cooled completely, evenly pour filling into the pan.

Refrigerate until firm and chilled, at least 2 hours. (Overnight is best.)

Sprinkle pie with remaining candy cane pieces. If you like, top with Reddi-wip just before serving. Dig in!


Serving Size: 1 slice (1/8th of pie)
Calories: 202
Fat: 4.5g
Sodium: 250mg
Carbs: 37g
Fiber: 0.25g
Sugars: 24g
Protein: 2.5g

PointsPlus™ value 5*

Monday, December 13, 2010

Burning Calories at the Gym

"Calories burned" readings on gym equipment are only estimates, but they provide a pretty good measure, depending on how honest you are with your information.

You finish your workout on the treadmill and the machine reads 300 calories. But how do you know if that number is truly accurate? Experts say there's a good chance it's not.
Burning Calories at the Gym: Crunching the Numbers
At the end of your workout, most cardio machines provide you with the number of calories you burned. Keep in mind though that this reading is an estimate — and often an overestimate — and should not be taken as gospel. "If you see that you expended 300 calories for a workout, there is probably about a 10 percent margin of error," says Pete McCall, MS, an exercise physiologist with the American Council on Exercise. "The number you see on the treadmill, stationary bike, elliptical machine, stair climber, etc., is just an estimate, but it is a relatively accurate estimate. It is based on what is called metabolic equivalents, or METs, which refers to how much oxygen your body uses."
McCall says that one MET is equal to 3.5 milliliters of oxygen per kilogram of your body weight per minute. This is the amount of oxygen your body requires at rest. When you work harder (e.g., when you exercise), your body burns more METs. "Your body has to expend energy to use oxygen. If you're running, your body needs more oxygen and your body spends more energy," McCall says.
The cardio equipment at the gym uses information on the number of METs it takes to perform a given exercise, as well as your weight if you enter it, to give you an estimate of how many calories you burned. "It is more accurate if you enter your weight and your age than if you don't," McCall notes.
If you are trying to lose weight, you may be particularly interested in finding out the exact number of calories you burned during your workout.
"If people are really concerned about monitoring weight loss, the gym equipment is a good estimate, but the best estimates are going to come from heart rate monitors," says McCall.
Newer heart rate monitors allow you to program in your resting heart rate and your age, and they use this information to give you a more precise estimate of the calories you expend.
Burning Calories at the Gym: Maximizing Your Burn
When deciding which piece of gym equipment will give you the best burn, don't count on the calories-burned estimates from the machine. In order to burn more calories, you simply have to work harder. So the best way to determine which piece of equipment will help you burn the most calories is by gauging how hard you are able to work on it — if you're not able to sustain a workout on the elliptical machine, for instance, use the treadmill instead.
While you can use the calorie counters on gym equipment as rough guidelines, the most important way to maximize the number of calories you are burning is to find a piece of equipment you enjoy using and to use it often.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

10 Happiness Helpers You'll Want to Try

It is the most wonderful time of the year!  We hear that a lot right now....but what we don't hear is that November-February is the time when DEPRESSION is the highest.   I found this article from Everyday Health that might help if you are feeling depressed or if the hustle & bustle of the HOLIDAYS has got you a little blue.


 Use these strategies to manage the symptoms of depression, promote positive thinking, alleviate stress, and boost your self-esteem.

1-Fighting Depression.  When you have depression, you can find ways to take control of your life and manage your treatment even beyond medications. Making some lifestyle changes can boost your mood and help alleviate many of your symptoms, including low self-esteem. "Minimizing stress as much as possible is a good idea when you're depressed, especially unnecessary or avoidable stressors that people can be pulled into when they're depressed," says Erik Nelson, MD, a psychiatrist and assistant professor of clinical psychiatry at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine in Ohio. 

2-Talk to a therapist.  Working with a therapist is often an important part of successfully managing depression. "Psychotherapy will focus on helping people adjust their lifestyle in ways that are possible, minimize their stress, and cope with stressors," says Dr. Nelson

 3-Write in your journal.  Writing in a journal is great therapy and can help you manage depression. You can relieve stress by being open about your thoughts, feelings, and concerns in your writing — and stress management is an important part of living well with depression. Be totally honest in your private journal. Writing down your feelings and challenges with depression can release pent-up emotions. You'll be amazed at how much better you feel after putting pen to paper for just a few minutes each day. 

 4-Boost your self-image.  People with depression often experience low self-esteem, so finding ways to feel better about yourself is an important aspect of treatment. Practice positive thinking by focusing your thoughts on your best qualities. You can also make lifestyle changes that can improve your self-esteem, such as eating a healthy diet, getting regular exercise, and spending time with friends who make you feel good about who you are. 

5-Stick to a schedule.  Maintaining a healthy and regular routine is very helpful for people with depression, says Nelson. "Many times with depression, people's motivation drops," he explains, making them feel unproductive and fueling feelings of low self-esteem. Schedule an activity that you have to do every day — make it one you really enjoy — and aim for as much balance as possible in your life. 

6-Stay Involved.  If you’re experiencing depression, you may feel like you want to withdraw socially and keep to yourself, either because of low self-esteem or a lack of interest. "Social life is important," says Nelson. Push yourself to stay involved with your friends. Social connections can help keep you from spiraling downward into deeper depression and from becoming isolated and alone with your thoughts. Go to the movies, share a brisk walk, or just catch up with a close friend — it might lift your spirits. 

7-Depend on others.  Friends and family can help you feel better about yourself when depression brings you down. Allow yourself to lean on loved ones when you need them. They can encourage you to follow your treatment plan, exercise, eat a healthy diet, and generally take care of yourself — all steps necessary to get better.

8-Get enough sleep.  Getting plenty of rest every night is a must for your mood. People with depression often have noticeable sleep disturbances — they either sleep too much or not enough. Go to bed and wake up on a regular schedule, and never skimp on your ZZZs. Feeling run-down will exacerbate your symptoms of depression and make it more difficult to be social, get exercise, and manage stress. 

9-EXERCISE!  Exercise offers physiological benefits that can help people going through depression. Physical activity relieves stress and can make you feel great. Plus, the satisfaction you get from finishing an engaging and challenging workout can boost your self-esteem as you get stronger and more physically fit. When you fight depression with a regular exercise routine, you’ll feel better emotionally and physically.

10-Make the Food & Mood connection.  "Diet and nutrition are very important," says Nelson, and cites omega-3 fatty acids as an example. Some studies have shown that a higher daily intake of omega-3s, which you can get in fish like salmon or through fish oil supplements, can improve mood. There are many connections between elements of diet and good nutrition and depression, adds Nelson. Eating a healthy diet can make you feel healthy, fit, and attractive, which improves self-esteem, while feeling unhealthy can worsen depression and play into negative self-perception, he says. 

~Everyday Health

Sunday, November 14, 2010

How to exercise in 30 mins or less!

How to Exercise in 30 Minutes or Less
By Leigh Crews
World renowned composer and director Leonard Bernstein said, “To achieve great things, two things are needed; a plan, and not quite enough time.” How true! Fitness is no exception — without a plan, it is all too easy to let your exercise program slip right through the cracks. But if you can squeeze just 30 minutes out of your day, you can fit in a great workout. Here are some tips to turn your plan into a “great thing” for your body:
  • Schedule it. Don’t wait for extra time to show up in your day—because it won’t. Mark off 30 minutes for exercise, just as you would schedule a doctor’s appointment, and then make it a priority.
  • Don’t worry about the “right time” to exercise. It matters little if it’s morning, noon or night. Choosing a time that works within your schedule will help you establish a permanent routine and keep other obligations from undermining your plan.
  • Recruit a workout buddy. For many people, an exercise partner is the glue that helps you stick to your commitment. Choose someone with compatible fitness level and goals so that you can each progress comfortably together and feel successful.
  • Start slowly. If you are not accustomed to exercise, don’t try to do too much, too soon. Walking is a great way to begin an exercise program. It’s simple—you already know how to do it! It requires no special equipment other than a good pair of walking shoes, and best of all, you can do it anywhere.
  • Make working out fun. Consistency is a key ingredient for any successful fitness regime, so seek out activities that you like doing. It doesn’t matter what the latest craze is that’s “guaranteed” to burn thousands of calories per workout. If you don’t enjoy doing it, you will never keep it up. Choose activities that add joy, not dread, to your day.
  • Mix it up. You need cardio, strength training and flexibility-based activities for a well-rounded exercise program. Rather than walking the same route every day, mix things up by doing some strength training a couple of days per week. Try this awesome 30 minute strength training program that requires no equipment.
  • Break it up when you must. On some busy days, 30 minutes straight is just not happening. On those days, three sessions of 10 minutes of exercise is better than writing it off completely. Do some body squats at your desk, take 10 to run the stairs, or find a quiet place to stretch. You will feel better and be more productive when you get back to your daily tasks.
  • When (not if) you have to miss a day, you are not a failure. You cannot fail unless you quit. Redouble your efforts for the next day, and keep your good habit going. Don’t let a missed day turn into a missed week and a missed opportunity for success.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Garden Veggie Soup....or as I like to call it....Zero-Point Soup ;)

Garden Vegetable Soup
It's that time of the year again where we get out our favorite soup recipes to warm us up on those chilly days.  Here is a favorite one from Weight Watchers that comes in at 0 Points!
     Makes 4 servings

  • 2/3 cup sliced carrot
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 cups fat-free broth (beef, chicken or vegetable)
  • 1 1/2 cups diced green cabbage
  • 1/2 cup green beans
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1/4 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup diced zucchini
Spray  a large saucepan with nonstick cooking spray, then heat.  Saute the carrot, onion and garlic over low heat until softened, about 5 minutes.  Add broth, cabbage, beans, tomato paste, basil, oregano and salt; bring to a boil.
Reduce heat and simmer, covered, about 15 minutes or until beans are tender.  Stir in the zucchini and heat for 3-4 minutes.  Serve hot.

Per serving: *0

Monday, November 8, 2010

You Don't Have to Join a Gym to Stay Fit This Winter

 Linda Vernon Scholl, MPT- University of Utah Healthcare

Here are some examples (based on ½ hour of activity):
Vacuuming - 119 calories
Mopping - 129 calories
Raking leaves - 146 calories
Painting the walls - 144 calories
Dusting - 85 calories
Ironing - 78 calories
Laundry - 73
Playing with kids - 192 calories
Shoveling snow - 204 calories
Adding things like stairs, squatting, lunges, and lifting to your work can burn even more calories.
Here are a few fitness strategies you can try using things you have around your home:
· Cans of food or small or large or tote bags filled with groceries make great hand weights. Do some lifting while you watch TV!
· A gallon jug filled with water weighs about 8lbs, or you can pile up some items in a laundry basket for more advanced lifting. (Clothes, books, young children!)
· A simple chair with arms can help you tone the backs of the arms or the legs!
· A wall provides great support for lunges, leg lifts, and other exercises.
· A large exercise ball and bands are inexpensive and are excellent ways to tone and strengthen muscles.
· Interactive video games such as Nintendo or Wii fit help you exercise while having fun.
· Try pushups on the edge of your counter while you're cooking.
· Always park far away from an entrance so you can add some walking to your day.
· Avoid the elevator and take the stairs - you can burn about 10 calories per flight!
· Lifting or playing with your children can be a lot of fun as well as work.
· Turn on some music and dance!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Halloween by Dotti :)

    By Dotti

With only a week before Halloween arrives, the stores are bombarding us with costumes, decorations and of course, the treats.  It seems you cannot even get out of the store without seeing the treats offered. 

How many of us have walked by the treats and said, "I'll get them now so I don't have to get them at the last minute"?  Now, honestly answer this question, "How many of us did buy the treats early and have already gotten into them?"  I know that I've done that in the past but no more. I've learned that there will be plenty available Halloween day and most times, on sale! 

So, what can we do to have a fun Halloween and keep our weight loss goals front and center?  Here are a few suggestions that I've learned through my 8 years on this wonderful Journey.

           Keep yourself busy getting your house ready for the trick or treaters; they
             will love it and you'll have fun doing it plus you are 'moving.'
          Make sure you get your sleep and keep your stress level low; exhaustion
             and being stressed are sure ways to overeat.
          If you are going to be giving out candy, buy it on Halloween day if possible.
         Keep a bowl of popcorn and platter of veggies within reach when handing
             out candy.
          Buy Halloween candy that you don't like.
          Take leftover candy to a shelter.
          Drink lots of water; in fact, always have water close by.
          Eat before your Halloween party; that puts you in control of your food.
          Volunteer at the party to greet guests and make them feel welcome; keeps
             you busy so eating is not your #1 priority.
          Take a veggie plate so you'll have some healthy munchies.
          Don't be afraid to say 'no' when offered treats; grab your water and
             remember how good it feels to be in control.
          Make your own costume if you are going to a costume party. As you can
             see below my costume was not made for 'eating' but I sure did have
             fun wearing it - lots of laughs & good times with little chance of blowing my
             program! BTW ~ I've won first place more than once with this fun costume.
Dotti's Bodiless Costume
The most important thing to remember is that Halloween is just another day.  The candy you would eat on Halloween is candy you can get on any day so why do you have to eat it on Halloween? It's because it's what we do on Halloween.  Guess what?  You can change what you do on Halloween.  No one is putting that candy or those treats in your mouth.  You have the strength to say no—each and every one of you.
Do you honestly think that you are having less of a good time because you don't indulge in the treats?  Of course not, so why indulge?  If you go to your Halloween celebration already satisfied from your 'controlled' meal at home you will have more time to focus on your friends and family.  You will not be focused on the 'treats'.  Having your water with you at all times reminds you that you are in control. It also keeps you satisfied and gives you a full feeling helping you to overcome the need for a 'treat'.
This year Al and I will be home for Halloween night. Instead of buying Halloween candy this early we have been shopping for ways to dress up the house and walkway in anticipation of our trick or treaters. It's been so much fun and the 'treat' side of it hasn't even come into question at this time.  We are more excited about the pumpkins, skeletons, ghoulish sounding doorbell, and how our visitors will like them.  I'm planning on being a vampire this year as my grandson Hunter, has been telling me all year to not be a witch again.  He didn't like my witch's costume.
I will most likely be buying Annabelle's Mini ABBA ZABBA, Big Hunk Bars, Look Bars (if I can find them this year) or other little 1 pt candy treats as they are not a red-light food for me and one I enjoy now and then.  At 50 calories each they are an On Program snack that I can freeze and enjoy whenever I wish. On the other hand, if these were red-light foods they would NOT come into my house.  Do yourself a favor ~ do not bring any candy into your house that would be a problem for you. Sooner or later you will get into the candy and you will be so disappointed in yourself.  I have found that by removing the temptations it is easier to stay in control.  After all, we are all human and being human we all stumble and fall.
This Halloween let's try to do everything in our power to stay in control and to remove any 'problems' that might get in the way of our Journey. Let's stay focused on the event called Halloween and not the 'treats' of Halloween.  Laughter, good friends, lots of wonderful costumes and having a wonderful time is Halloween; the 'treats' are secondary.

I wish each and every one of you a very Happy Halloween with lots of laughter and wonderful times. 

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Diet Soda Cake--YUM!

Basically all you do to make this just mix a 12-oz. can (or 1 1/2 cups) of diet soda with an 18.25-oz. box of cake mix -- don't add ANYTHING else. Then just bake it up in the oven at 350 degrees. (Refer to the box of cake mix for pan size and bake time.) Easy and WAY lower in calories and fat than the standard back-of-box cake recipe, which typically calls for eggs and oil.
Thanks HUNGRY GIRL!!! :)

Monday, October 25, 2010

Halloween Candy Nutritionals...for those of you who care to know! lol

I've listed a few of the Halloween candy (mostly snack size) that will be floating around from now until Halloween so you will know just how much damage these little 'treats' can do.

♦ 3 Musketeers, (2 bars) [140 cal/4.5 g fat/0 g fiber/26 g carbs] *3.5
♦ 1000 Grand, (2 bars) [190 cal/8 g fat/<1 g fiber/30 g carbs] *4.5
♦ ABC Fruit Chomps, (7 pieces) [140 cal/1.5 g fat/0 g fiber/32 g carbs] *3
♦ America’s Original Bubble Gum, (4 pieces) [60 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/16 g carbs] *1
♦ Annabelle's Mini ABBA ZABBA, (1 bar) [50 cal/1 g fat/0 g fiber/11 g carbs] *1.5
♦ Annabelle's Mini Big Hunk Bars, (1 bar) [50 cal/0.5 g fat/0 g fiber/11 g carbs] *1.5
♦ Annabelle's Mini Look Bars, (1 bar) [50 cal/1.5 g fat/0 g fiber/9 g carbs] *1.5
♦ Atomic Fireballs, (1 piece) [40 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/9 g carbs] *1
♦ Blow Pops, (1 piece) [70 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/17 g carbs] *1.5
♦ Dum Dum Lollipops, (3 pops) [59 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber] *1.5
♦ Jolly Rancher Mini Stix, (1 stick) [35 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/9 g carbs] *1
♦ Kit Kat, (one 2-piece bar) [80 cal/4 g fat/0 g fiber/10 g carbs] *2
♦ Life Saver Five Flavor Candy, (4 pieces) [60 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/16 g carbs] *1.5
♦ Life Saver Gummi Savers, (2 rolls) [110 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/27 g carbs] *2.5
♦ Life Saver Pops, (1 pop) [40 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/10 g carbs] *1
♦ Mary Jane Peanut Butter Kisses, (6 pieces) [150 cal/3 g fat/0 g fiber/33 g carbs] *3.5
♦ Milk Duds, (4 boxes) [160 cal/6 g fat/0 g fiber/26 g carbs] *4
♦ Necco Wafers, (1 roll) [50 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/13 g carbs] *1
♦ Nerds, (1 box) [35 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/9 g carbs] *1
♦ Nestle Crunch Fun Size, (4 bars) [200 cal/10 g fat/<1 g fiber/26 g carbs] *5
♦ Now & Later, (3 mini bars) [140 cal/1.5 g fat/0 g fiber/34 g carbs] *3
♦ Peter Pan Peanut Butter Cups, (4 pieces) [230 cal/15 g fat/1 g fiber/21 g carbs] *6
♦ Reese's Peanut Butter Bites, (3 pkgs) [230 cal/13 g fat/1 g fiber/24 g carbs] *5.5
♦ Skittles, (3 pkgs) [170 cal/2.5 g fat/0 g fiber/36 g carbs] *4
♦ Spree Twist, (2 rolls) [60 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/14 g carbs] *1.5
♦ Starburst, (3 funsize pkgs) [170 cal/2.5 g fat/0 g fiber/36 g carbs] *4
♦ Starburst Fruit Chews, (8 chews) [160 cal/3.5 g fat/0 g fiber/33 g carbs] *3.5
♦ Sugar Babies, (2 pouches) [210 cal/2 g fat/0 g fiber/47 g carbs] *4.5
♦ Sugar Daddy Pops, (3 pops) [160 cal/2 g fat/0 g fiber/34 g carbs] *3.5
♦ Sweet Tarts, (2 rolls) [50 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/12 g carbs] *1
♦ Tootsie Hot Chocolate Pops, (1 Pop) [70 cal/.5 g fat/0 g fiber/17 g carbs] *1.5
♦ Tootsie Roll Midgees, (6 pieces) [160 cal/3 g fat/<1 g fiber/33 g carbs] *3.5
♦ Twix, Regular Size, (1 2-pack) [280 cal/14 g fat/1 g fiber/37 g carbs] *7
♦ Twizzlers Pull-n-Peel Cherry Candy, (3 pieces) [120 cal/.5 g fat/0 g fiber/28 g carbs] *2.5
♦ Twizzlers Strawberry Twists, 4 twists [120 cal/.5 g fat/0 g fiber/29 g carbs] *2.5
♦ Wonka Nerds Gumballs, (1 piece) [45 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/11 g carbs] *1
♦ Wonka Shock Tarts Gumball, (1 piece) [30 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/8 g carbs] *1
♦ Wrigley's Chewing Gum, (5 pieces) [50 cal/0 g fat/0 g fiber/10 g carbs] *1

You can find more candy nutritionals at:

Thursday, October 14, 2010

The truth about boosting your Metabolism!

There's only one way you can boost your metabolism legitimately. Find out what works and what doesn't.
By Madeline Vann, MPH
Medically reviewed by Niya Jones, MD, MPH

If you've ever tried to lose weight, you've probably wished you could speed up your metabolism and burn calories more easily. Weight-loss programs often promise to provide "metabolism-boosting" secrets, but the savvy dieter should know that many of these are just gimmicks.

Many theories about metabolism are falsely rooted in the idea that there are particular foods or beverages that will magically increase your ability to burn calories. While most nutritionists agree that eating meals based on whole grains and lean proteins is a healthy diet practice, this approach won't actually help you burn calories faster. Neither will "fat-burning" foods like grapefruit or cabbage.

"Unfortunately, there isn't a food that we can eat that is going to burn away those excess pounds," says Jenna Anding, PhD, RD, of the department of nutrition and food science at Texas A&M in College Station, Texas.

Here's the truth about other popular metabolism-boosting theories, including the one that actually works.

5 Metabolism Boosters: Separating Fact From Fiction

1. Don't eat close to bedtime. You may have been told not to eat too close to bedtime because of the theory that your metabolism slows down at night and you'll lose less weight than you would if you ate the same food earlier in the day. Not true, says Donna L. Weihofen, MS, RD, health nutritionist at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics in Madison, Wisc. "Calories count whether you eat them in the morning or at night. The problem with nighttime eaters is that they are usually eating far more calories than they think, and the calories are denser."
2. Drinking water speeds metabolism. Drinking plenty of water is healthful for a number of reasons, but it doesn't make your body burn calories faster. It can help you feel full, which may keep some cravings at bay. "But that effect doesn't last very long," Weihofen cautions. "One of the things that does help is soup before a meal. A broth-type soup does help cut down on the amount of calories you will eat." Of course, broth won't speed metabolism, either, but it will help you stick to your diet plan.
3. Eat at the same time or at certain times every day to burn calories. Some diets recommend eating every couple of hours, while others advise sticking to a consistent schedule or number of meals for weight-loss success. Following a set schedule may help you stick to a diet plan, but doesn't help you burn more calories. "There's no magic to that," explains Weihofen. "It's whatever fits your lifestyle and your diet."
4. Eating breakfast boosts metabolism. Eating breakfast on a regular basis is important for shedding pounds, but not solely because it improves your metabolism, says Emily Banes, RD, clinical dietitian at Houston Northwest Medical Center. "People who eat only one meal a day will shut down their metabolism. So breakfast is partly a metabolism-booster and it is partly to make sure you stay on track for the rest of the day," notes Banes. People who eat breakfast are less likely to binge later in the day, which of course promotes weight loss.
5. Build muscle. The reality is that there is only one way to enhance metabolism: Build more lean muscle mass. "The best way to increase metabolism is by incorporating physical activity, both cardio and weight training, to increase lean muscle mass, which is what burns the calories!" advises Dr. Anding.

Even at rest, muscle tissue burns more calories than fat, Anding says. So weight-loss programs that encourage strength training and other forms of exercise to improve your metabolism are your best bet.

EVERYONE HAVE A GREAT UEA WEEKEND!!!! :) I'll be back to posting on October 23!!!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Which Halloween candy is healthier?

Which Halloween candy is a better choice? Take this quiz:

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

MUST READ POST!!!! It will change your life!!! :)

BUILD YOUR OWN BOOT-CAMP WORKOUT!!!! You will get the results you want with this KICK-BUTT routine! :)
Bootcamp programs have been gaining popularity across America over the last few years. For good reason… they work! Fitness bootcamps are designed to be intense, "jump-in-and-go-for-it", training programs that require a time and financial commitment. Most programs are done in a small group (6 - 10 people), require a 3-week to 3-month time commitment, and cost anywhere from $200 to $600, on average.
Bootcamp programs are GREAT! The motivation and the intensity of a new workout program can truly help you succeed in making more positive changes for your health. Bootcamp personal trainers are knowledgeable and provide essential motivation for you to get through a tough program.
However, if you don't have access, time or money to a try a coordinated-bootcamp program, then recruit a couple friends and start your own! It's totally doable, and frankly, pretty fun when you get to choose your program, pick the training days and spur a few close friends on! Give it a try!
A few tips to remember:
- Bootcamp is as much a mental makeover as a physical makeover. Put equal time into building yourself (or friends) up mentally. YOU CAN DO THIS!
- Bootcamp is supposed to be dramatic… a shock for your body. The basic bottom line: take what you think you can do AND DOUBLE IT! If you think you can only do 10 jumping jacks, then go for 20.
- Recruit a couple friends. Sure, you can do this on your own, but with a couple friends you can take turns choosing/directing the workout and compete with each other to make the workout more enjoyable.
- Set a date to start and a date to finish… then commit and go for it!
- Take turns being the "motivator". If you have a partner or small circle of friends, then take turns being the drill sergeant. They can yell at you, tell you to go harder, tell you to be strong… etc. This role is an essential part of any bootcamp program!
Here's how to build your own bootcamp workout:
1) Warm-up: 5 minutes
(choose one activity, perform for 5 minutes)
•march in place/outdoor walk
•knee lifts
•step up/down on first stair
•jog in place
•side taps
2) Cardio: ~ 5 minutes
(choose three activities, rotate them every 30 seconds, repeat 3 times)
•jump rope
•tire jogs
•jumping jacks
•high knee jogs
•side shuffles
• back tap lunges
• kickbox kicks
• boxing arms
• karoke feet
3) Strength: ~ 5 minutes
(choose three activities, rotate them every 30 seconds, repeat 3 times)
• push ups
• triceps dips
• slow motion squats
• squat with overhead press*
• bicep curl with lunge*
• bentover row with squat*
• straight-leg dead lift to calf raise*
• side arm raise with side squat*
• elevated biceps curls with sumo squat*
• triceps kickback with reverse lunge*
*need dumbbells or a resistance tube or a stability ball
4) Power: ~ 5 minutes
(choose three activities, rotate them every 30 seconds, repeat 3 times)
• plyometric scissor jumps
• repeater knees
• jump squats with 180 degree turn
• prisoner jumping jacks
• squat pulses
• burpees
• mountain climbers
• ski jumps
• low lunge to kick
• dorothy kicks
5) Core: ~ 5 minutes
(choose three activities, rotate them every 30 seconds, repeat 3 times)
• v crunches
• power planks
• triple twist
• full sit ups
• 3-count crunches (raise up 1-2-3, down 1)
• scissor kicks
• glute bridge
• dead bugs
• straight-arm crunches
6) Cool-down
(choose one activity, perform for 3 - 5 minutes)
1. lotus pose with deep breathing and meditation
2. seated stretching
3. outdoor walk or light march in place
4. partner stretching
5. a few of your favorite yoga poses
The bottom line is to perform at least one activity from each of the main bootcamp categories: warm-up, cardio, strength, power, core, cooldown. Pick your favorite moves from past workouts, ask a trainer for new ideas, or use activities from this list.
Consult a trainer if you have any questions on form, it's a one-time expense that will benefit you for the rest of your life!

~Melanie Douglas~~Studio 5~~Fitness Contributor

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

What are the best foods to eat right before my workout?

Foods high in complex carbohydrates — such as fruits, vegetables, and whole-grain bread, rice, or pasta — are excellent pre-exercise snacks. The complex carbohydrates enter your bloodstream slowly and help you avoid sugar crashes, which can occur when you eat snacks that are made with simple sugars, such as candy. Many energy bars are loaded with complex carbs, but I find the energy bars to be much too filling for a pre-exercise snack. Here's what I do: I cut an energy bar in half so I can eat one piece before my workout, the other piece the next day.

Exactly how much you should eat before working out is really a personal thing. Some people can consume a large meal just before exercising and not experience any problems, while others can barely eat half an apple without getting sick during their workout. This is really something you need to experiment with to find out what, when, and how much of a snack works best for you.

Monday, September 27, 2010

A Year of WEIGHT WATCHERS Magazine for only $3.99

Copy & paste the link below to grab this awesome deal. WEIGHT WATCHERS Magazine for only $3.99. This is an awesome magazine with great articles & recipes. You will love it!! Get it while this offer lasts....LIMITED TIME ON THIS ONE!!! :)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Enchilada Chicken Soup

PER SERVING (1 cup): 105 calories, 1.75g fat, 641mg sodium, 12.5g carbs, 2g fiber, 4g sugars, 11g protein -- POINTS® value 2*

3 cups fat-free chicken broth
1 1/4 cups finely chopped celery
1/2 cup diced sweet yellow onion
3 cups green enchilada sauce
One 15-oz. can pure pumpkin
10 oz. cooked boneless skinless lean chicken breast, chopped or shredded
1 cup frozen white (or yellow) corn
Optional: dash hot sauce, or more to taste
Optional toppings: shredded fat-free cheddar cheese, crushed baked tortilla chips

In a large pot, bring broth to a low boil on the stove. Add celery and onion, and simmer for about 5 minutes, until slightly tender.

Stir in enchilada sauce and pumpkin. Once soup returns to a low boil, add chicken and corn, and mix well. Cook for an additional 3 - 5 minutes, until soup is heated throughout.

Add a dash or more hot sauce. (Or not. It's your soup.) Serve and, if you like, top with shredded cheese and/or crushed chips.



Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Look on the Bright Side

For every negative that consumes your happiness,
Affirm two positives that sustain you.
For every "should’ve" you wish you’d done,
Acknowledge something you’re glad you did.
For every loss that has altered your world,
Count from it something you have gained.
For every limit that has ever beset you,
Consider your possibilities.
You can’t always change the way things are,
But you can change the way you wish to see them.
Never stop looking
For the brighter side and beyond.

--- from The Language of Positive Thinking by Eric T. Moore

Monday, September 20, 2010

Koosa--Stuffed Zucchini

Great Recipe for Stuffed Zucchini :)

Sunday, September 19, 2010

12 Super Foods for Faster Weight Loss

Our old American diet has cost us dearly: One in three of us is now overweight or obese, and a third of American children will develop diabetes in their lifetimes. But the answer isn’t eating less food—it’s eating more of the right foods: 12 of them in particular, called the New American Diet Superfoods. Read on for the list of 12, and for more secrets on how to lose weight and keep it off for good, order your copy of "The New American Diet."

Nuts are New American Diet smart bombs. They’re packed with monounsaturated fatty acids, those good-for-you fats that lower your risk of heart disease and diabetes, and, according to new research, help you control your appetite.

Whole Grains
It's not a magic disappearing act, but it's close: When Harvard University researchers analyzed the diets of more than 27,000 people over 8 years, they discovered that those who ate whole grains daily weighed 2.5 pounds less than those who ate only refined-grain foods.

Avocados and Other Healthy Fats
Just because a food has plenty of fat and calories doesn’t mean it’s fattening. See, certain foods cause you to gain weight because they provoke hormonal changes that trigger cravings, or “rebound hunger.” One hunger-control hormone, leptin, becomes blunted by starchy, sweet, fatty, and refined-carbohydrate foods. That's why a bagel is fattening: It's a high-calorie load of refined carbohydrates that double-crosses your natural satisfaction response. Avocados, on the other hand, aren't fattening, because they’re loaded with healthy fat and fiber and don't cause wild swings in insulin levels

Meats (Pasture-Raised and Free-Range)
Grass-fed beef, chicken, and pork are leaner and healthier than conventional livestock—and can help trim away pounds. A 3.5-ounce serving of grass-fed beef has only 2.4 grams of fat, compared with 16.3 grams for conventionally raised beef. In fact, grass-fed beef is so much more nutritious than commodity beef that it's almost a different food.
Grass-fed beef contains more conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), which has been shown to reduce abdominal fat while building lean muscle. It also has more omega-3s and less omega-6s than corn-fed beef. It’s the same with chickens. According to a recent study in the journal Poultry Science, free-range chickens have significantly more omega-3s than grain-fed chickens do, and less harmful fat and fewer calories than grain-fed varieties. This is important because omega-3s improve your mood, boost your metabolism, sharpen your brain, and help you lose weight.

Environmentally Sustainable Fish
Choosing seafood these days isn't easy. Some species (swordfish, farmed salmon) contain obesity-promoting pollutants (dioxins, PCBs). Others are fattened with soy, which lowers their levels of healthy omega-3s. In fact, the American Heart Association recently urged people who are concerned about heart disease to avoid eating tilapia for just that reason. Wow. That goes against conventional wisdom, doesn’t it?
So what kind of fish should you eat, and how can the New American Diet help? Generally, small, oily ocean fish (herring, mackerel, sardines) are low in toxins and score highest in omega-3s. Wild Alaskan salmon, Pacific halibut, rainbow trout, and yellowfin tuna are generally low in toxins and high in nutrients. And then there are fish that we should avoid at all times: farmed (or “Atlantic”) salmon, farmed tilapia, Atlantic cod, Chilean sea bass, and farmed shrimp.

Raspberries and Other Berries
A recent study by researchers at Yale University school of medicine discovered that after eating a high-carb, high-sugar meal, free radicals (rogue molecules produced when your body breaks down food) attack the neurons that tell us when we’re full. The result: It’s hard to judge when hunger is satisfied. Escape the cycle of overindulgence by eating foods that are rich in antioxidants. And berries top the charts.
The berries that give you the most antioxidant bang per bite, in order: cranberries, black currents, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, pomegranates.

Instant Oats
Fiber is the secret to losing weight without going hungry. One U.S. Department of Agriculture study found that those who increased their daily fiber intake from 12 grams to 24 absorbed 90 fewer calories per day than those who ate the same amount of food but less fiber.

Cruciferous Vegetables and Other Folate-Rich Greens
The more folate you have in your diet, the lower your risk of obesity, heart disease, stroke, cognitive impairment, Alzheimer’s and depression. And a recent study in the British Journal of Nutrition found that those with the highest folate levels lose 8.5 times more weight when dieting. And cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, kale, cabbage, Swiss chard, and bok choy, are not only rich in folate, they’re also rich in potassium.

Apples and Other Fruits
What makes the apple so potent? In part, it’s because most of us eat the peel: It’s a great way to add fiber and nutrients to your diet. But there’s a downside: The peel is where the fruit tends to absorb and retain most of the pesticides they are exposed to, apples and peaches being the worst offenders. That’s why, for maximum weight-loss potential, we strongly recommend you buy organic versions of apples, pears, peaches, and other eat-the-peel fruits.

Navy Beans and Other Legumes
Study after study reveals that bean eaters live longer and weigh less. One study showed that people who eat 3/4 cup of beans daily weigh 6.6 pounds less than those who don't eat beans. Another study in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition found that people who eat one and a half servings of beans a day (3/4 cup) have lower blood pressure and smaller waist sizes than those who skip beans in favor of other proteins

Dark Chocolate
A new study from Denmark found that those who eat dark chocolate consume 15 percent fewer calories at their next meal and are less interested in fatty, salty, and sugary foods. And research shows that dark chocolate can improve heart health, lower blood pressure, reduce LDL ("bad") cholesterol, decrease the risk of blood clots, and increase blood flow to the brain. Dark chocolate boosts serotonin and endorphin levels, which are associated with improved mood and greater concentration; it's rich in B vitamins and magnesium, which are noted cognitive boosters; it contains small amounts of caffeine, which helps with short-term concentration; and it contains theobromine, a stimulant that delivers a different kind of buzz, sans the jitters. Dark chocolate is also one of the best foods for better sex.

Ice Cream and Other Healthy Desserts
Calcium-rich desserts like ice cream bind to fatty acids in the digestive tract, blocking their absorption. In one study, participants who ate 1,735 mg of calcium from low-fat dairy products (about as much as in five 8-ounce glasses of milk) blocked the equivalent of 85 calories a day. Plus, half a cup of vanilla ice cream gives you 19 milligrams of choline, which translates to protection from cancer, heart attack, stroke, and dementia. We’re not suggesting you have a bowlful of ice cream every night. But a scoop (the size of a tennis ball) every few days isn’t the diet saboteur it’s made out to be.

Monday, September 13, 2010

25 Little Tips for Big Weight Loss

Article By: Karen Hammonds

Check out our list of easy weight-loss hints to get you back on track.

Feel like you need a boost? Perhaps you've hit a plateau? Now is the perfect time to take stock of your life and to make some long-overdue changes. But adjusting eating and exercise habits can seem so daunting, it's no wonder that some of us never make it beyond the first day! So what's the best way to get started?

The surest way to succeed is making small changes. Think in terms of manageable baby steps, like swapping the half-and-half in your morning coffee for fat-free or low-fat milk. There are lots of little changes you can make — in your food plan and daily routine — that will add up to a lot of weight loss over the long haul.

Take a look at our 25 tips below for eating healthfully, fitting exercise into your busy day and revamping your daily routine. Start by picking five changes that you're sure you can tackle and practice them this week. Then try another five next week (click the 'print' link above to print this out for easy reference).

Not every idea is right for everyone, so experiment and see what works for you. Lots of little changes can yield big weight-loss results—and a healthier new you!

1. Good things come in small packages
Here's a trick for staying satisfied without consuming large portions: Chop high-calorie foods like cheese and chocolate into smaller pieces. It will seem like you're getting more than you actually are.

2. Get "water-wise"
Make a habit of reaching for a glass of water instead of a high-fat snack. It will help your overall health as well as your waistline. So drink up! Add some zest to your six to eight glasses a day with a twist of lemon or lime.

3. Herb it up
Stock up your spice rack, and start growing a small herb garden in your kitchen window. Spices and herbs add fantastic flavor to foods without adding fat or calories.

4. Slim down your soup
Make a big batch of soup and refrigerate it before you eat it. As it cools, the fat will rise to the top and can be skimmed off the surface.

5. Doggie-bag that dinner
At restaurants that you know serve large portions, ask the waiter to put half of your main course in a take-home box before bringing it to your table. Putting the food away before you start your meal will help you practice portion control.

6. Listen to your cravings
If you're craving something sweet, eat something sweet — just opt for a healthier nosh (like fruit) instead of a high-calorie one like ice cream. The same goes for crunchy cravings—for example, try air-popped popcorn instead of high-fat chips. It's just smart substitution!

7. Ease your way into produce
If you're new to eating lots of fruits and vegetables, start slowly. Just add them to the foods you already enjoy. Pile salad veggies into your sandwiches, or add fruit to your cereal.

8. Look for high-fat hints
Want an easy way to identify high-calorie meals? Keep an eye out for these words: au gratin, parmigiana, tempura, alfredo, creamy and carbonara, and enjoy them in moderation.

9. Don't multi-task while you eat
If you're working, reading or watching TV while you eat, you won't be paying attention to what's going into your mouth—and you won't be enjoying every bite. Today, every time you have a meal, sit down. Chew slowly and pay attention to flavors and textures. You'll enjoy your food more and eat less.

10. Taste something new

Broaden your food repertoire — you may find you like more healthy foods than you knew. Try a new fruit or vegetable (ever had plantain, bak choy, starfruit or papaya?).

11. Leave something on your plate at every meal
One bite of bagel, half your sandwich, the bun from your burger. See if you still feel satisfied eating just a bit less.

12. Get to know your portion sizes
It's easy to underestimate how much you're eating. Today, don't just estimate things — make sure. Ask how much is in a serving, read the fine print on labels, measure your food. And learn portion equivalents: One serving of pasta, for instance, should be around the size of a tennis ball.

13. Don't give up dips
If you love creamy dips and sauces, don't cut them out of your food plan completely. Just use low-fat soft cheese and mayo instead of the full fat stuff.

14. Make a healthy substitution
Learn to swap healthier foods for their less-healthy counterparts. Today, find a substitution that works for you: Use skim or low-fat milk instead of whole milk; try whole-wheat bread instead of white.

15. Bring lunch to work tomorrow
Packing lunch will help you control your portion sizes. It also provides a good alternative to restaurants and takeaways, where making healthy choices every day can be challenging (not to mention expensive).

16. Have some dessert
You don't have to deny yourself all the time. Have a treat that brings you pleasure, but this time enjoy it guilt-free be — sure you're practicing portion control, and compensate for your indulgence by exercising a little more or by skipping your afternoon snack.

17. Ask for what you need
Tell your mother-in-law you don't want seconds. Ask your other half to stop bringing you chocolates. Speak up for the place with great salads when your co-workers are picking a restaurant for lunch. Whatever you need to do to succeed at weight loss, ask for it — make yourself a priority and assert yourself.

18. Improve your treadmill technique
When walking on a treadmill, don't grip the rails. It's fine to touch them for balance, but you shouldn't have to hold on. If you do, that might be a signal you should lower the intensity level.

19. Simon says... get fit
Here's an easy way to fit in exercise with your kids: Buy a set of 1 lb weights and play a round of Simon Says—you do it with the weights, they do it without. They'll love it!

20. Make the most of your walks
If your walking routine has become too easy, increase your effort by finding hills. Just be sure to tackle them at the beginning of your walk, when you have energy to spare.

21. Shop 'til you drop...pounds!
Add a workout to your shopping sessions by walking around the mall before your start spending. And try walking up the escalator — getting to your destination faster will be an added bonus.

22. Walk an extra 100 steps at work
Adding even a little extra exercise to your daily routine can boost your weight loss. Today, take the stairs instead of the elevator, or stroll down the hall to talk to a co-worker instead of sending an email or calling.

23. Brush your teeth after every meal and snack
This will be a signal to your mouth — and your mind — that it's time to stop eating. Brushing will also give your mouth a nice fresh taste that you'll be disinclined to ruin with a random chip. At work, keep a toothbrush with a cover and toothpaste in your desk drawer.

24. Clean your closet
First, it's great exercise. Second, it's an important step in changing your attitude. Get rid of all the clothes that make you look or feel bad. Throw out anything that's too big — don't give yourself the option of ever fitting into those clothes again. Move the smaller clothes up to the front to help motivate you. Soon, you'll be fitting into those too-tight jeans you couldn't bear to part with.

25. Take your measurements
You might not like your stats now, but you'll be glad you wrote them down when you see how many inches you've lost. It's also another way to measure your success, instead of just looking at the scale. Sometimes even when the numbers on the scale aren't going down, the measurements on your body are.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

One Year SHAPE Magazine subscription for only $2.99--Hurry!

This is one of the magazines that I have subscribed to for years! $2.99 for an entire year's subscription is even less than 1 copy you would purchase at the store.
is offering a 1 Year Subscription to Shape Magazine for only $2.99. Just use promo code "SHAPE" to get it to that price. If you can't find it, click on the "Second Chance" link on the left hand side of their site.

Friday, August 20, 2010

5 Diet-Friendly Frozen Treats

These simple, "homemade" frozen treats will cool you off without killing your diet.

You can find plenty of diet-wise frozen fruit pops and other frozen desserts at the supermarket that contain no more than 100 calories per serving. With few exceptions, however, these goodies get their low-cal count from artificial sweeteners and fats. So, while commercial brands are good in a pinch, there's really nothing like the taste of frozen treats you make yourself, starting with fresh ingredients, especially when they're this easy to prepare.

Frozen Iced Tea Cubes. Take refreshment a step further by freezing iced black, green or herbal tea in ice cube trays. Tea itself contains no calories and neither does any lemon juice you add for flavoring. The less sugar or honey you add to sweeten, the fewer calories you'll have in your iced treat and the more you can enjoy on a hot day. Once they are partially frozen, you can insert a popsicle stick or lollipop stick into the center of the cube (both types of sticks are available in cook shops and in the cooking/baking department of many large supermarkets). Or simply pop the frozen cubes out into a cup.

Watermelon Slushie. Freeze chunks of seedless watermelon in a covered, freezable food storage container. Whenever you want a frosty treat, throw a few chunks in a blender or food processor and whirl with an on/off motion until you have a frozen slush. If you like, add a squeeze of fresh lime or lemon juice. Be careful not to over-blend, or you'll end up with cold watermelon soup (also a tasty treat but probably not what you were expecting)!

Frozen Bananas. When it comes to homemade, it doesn't get any easier than this. Peel a small, ripe banana and sprinkle with lemon juice to prevent browing. Wrap it in plastic wrap, aluminum foil or freezer wrap, and pop in the freezer for several hours or until solid. Once frozen, or at least semi-frozen, bananas have the consistency of ice cream. If you like nuts, roll and press your banana in just a dusting of very finely chopped almonds or walnuts before wrapping and freezing. For an easy-grab pop, pop, insert a flat popsicle stick into one end before freezing.

Frozen Grapes. Freeze individual grapes on a tray. When frozen, pour the grapes into a freezer-safe food storage bag or container. Frozen grapes make great diet food because they are small treats that you won't gobble up as quickly as fresh grapes. They also seem like more of a treat than fresh grapes because, like bananas, they take on a creamier consistency when frozen.

Raspberry Semifreddo. In Italian, semifreddo means "half cold," and is used to describe a variety of partially frozen (or partially thawed) desserts that include ice creams, cakes, custards and fruit mixtures. You can make a Line a (9 x 5-inch) loaf pan with aluminum foil so that the foil hangs over the long sides of the pan. In a mixing bowl, combine a large container (32 ounces) vanilla or honey flavored yogurt with 1 cup fresh raspberries (or any fresh cut-up fruit or berries). Spoon the mixture into the lined pan. Freeze at least overnight. To serve, transfer the semifreddo from the freezer to the refrigerator for 1 hour to thaw slightly, just until it is easy to slice but not yet thawed. Use the foil to remove the frozen loaf from the pan. Cut into thin slices to serve. You can cut the entire loaf and refreeze slices individually. Let the slices thaw for at least 20 minutes in the refrigerator to enjoy them semifreddo. Top with additional fresh fruit, if you like. A great variation: In a blender or food processer, combine the yogurt with a ripe banana until almost pureed, before mixing with berries and freezing.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Banana Split Pie YUM YUM!

PER SERVING (1 slice): 161 calories, 1.25g fat, 81mg sodium, 36g carbs, 3g fiber, 17g sugars, 3g protein -- POINTS® value 3*

People will FLIP when you slice into this crazy multi-serving dessert...

One 60-calorie sugar-free chocolate pudding snack (like the kind by Jell-O)
2 cups Cool Whip Free, thawed
3 cups fat-free vanilla ice cream (like Breyers Smooth & Dreamy Fat Free)
1 1/2 cups sliced strawberries
2 bananas, sliced
2 tbsp. Hershey's Lite Chocolate Syrup
1 tbsp. crushed dry-roasted peanuts
8 maraschino cherries

Set out all your ingredients so your ice cream doesn't melt too much once you start assembling.

Combine pudding snack with Cool Whip in a bowl and mix thoroughly. Set aside.

Once slightly softened, scoop ice cream into a large pie pan and spread into an even layer along the bottom. Evenly place strawberry slices flat over the ice cream, pressing down lightly so they adhere.

Spread pudding/Cool Whip mixture into a smooth layer over the strawberries. Evenly place banana slices flat over this layer, and drizzle with chocolate syrup. Sprinkle with nuts and evenly place the cherries on top of the pie. Freeze for about 4 hours (or overnight), until completely firm.

Allow pie to sit at room temperature for 5 minutes before slicing. Cut into 8 slices and enjoy!


HG Alternative! Prepare this pie with light ice cream in place of the fat-free stuff, and each slice will have 170 calories, 3.25g fat, and 2g fiber (POINTS® value 3*).

Thursday, August 12, 2010

To Maintain A Healthy Level Of Insanity ;o)

Just a little HUMOR to make you smile this week!

1.. At Lunch Time, Sit In Your Parked Car With Sunglasses on and point a Hair Dryer At Passing Cars. See If They Slow Down.
2. Page Yourself Over The Intercom. Don't Disguise Your Voice !
3.. Every Time Someone Asks You To Do Something, ask If They Want Fries with that.
4. Put Decaf In The Coffee Maker For 3 Weeks . Once Everyone has Gotten Over Their Caffeine Addictions, Switch to Espresso.
5. In the Memo Field Of All Your Checks, Write ' For Marijuana.
6. Skip down the hall Rather Than Walk and see how many looks you get.
7. Order a Diet Water whenever you go out to eat, with a serious face.
8. Specify That Your Drive-through Order Is 'To Go'.
9. Sing Along At The Opera.
10. Five Days In Advance, Tell Your Friends You Can't Attend Their Party Because You have a headache.
11. When The Money Comes Out The ATM, Scream 'I Won! I Won!'
12. When Leaving the Zoo, Start Running towards the Parking lot, Yelling 'Run For Your Lives! They're Loose!'
13 . Tell Your Children Over Dinner, 'Due To The Economy, We Are Going To Have To Let One Of You Go.'

And The Final Way To Keep A Healthy Level Of Insanity



Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Have you had a GOOD cry lately??

Is Crying Healthy?
When emotions overtake you, crying can be a healthy emotional release. But not all environments are conducive to alleviating sadness or expressing relief.
By Dennis Thompson Jr.
Medically reviewed by Pat F. Bass III, MD, MPH

The notion that big boys or big girls don't cry is a persistent idea fed by popular sayings, but psychologists and researchers say that it's just not so. Shedding tears can be a huge and very healthy emotional release, particularly if you are experiencing deep pain, sadness, anger, or stress.

One study analyzed 140 years of popular articles about crying and found that more than 9 in 10 found tears to be a good way to release pent-up feelings. An international sample of men and women from 30 countries found that most reported feeling relief after a good cry. And about 70 percent of therapists say they believe crying is good for their patients.

Crying as Catharsis

The main benefit of crying is catharsis, or a purging or purification of your feelings through emotional release. When you cry, you can let go of the tension and sadness and other emotions that have been causing you pain. In many ways, crying serves as a safety valve that allows you to blow off emotions that have built up too much pressure inside you.

It's been difficult for researchers to figure out how this works. When tears are induced in a laboratory setting — for example, having subjects watch a sad movie — more often than not the participants report that they feel worse rather than better.

Despite this, people consistently report that a good cry makes them feel better. One recent study reviewing more than 3,000 detailed reports of recent crying episodes found that most people reported an improvement in their mood afterward. Another study of 196 Dutch women found that nearly 9 in 10 said they felt better after

Another benefit of crying is that it can bring people closer. An Israeli researcher studying the evolutionary aspects of crying has speculated that shedding tears communicates vulnerability to others, since the tears blur your vision and leaves you defenseless. A person who cares for you while you are in this weakened state can grow closer to you, and the bond between the two of you may grow stronger.

Have a Healthy Cry

Research has found that for crying to improve emotional health, certain conditions need to be met:

* You should have a shoulder to cry on. People who receive social support while crying report more cathartic release than people who cry alone. Find a friend or loved one you trust.
* You should cry after you've solved the problem. People feel better when they cry about a problem that's already been resolved. If you cry before you've dealt with the situation that's making you feel like crying, you are likely to receive no benefit or actually make yourself feel worse rather than better.
* You need to make sure you're crying in an appropriate place. People who experience shame or embarrassment while they cry are less likely to report an improvement of their mood. If you're going to feel bad about crying in a public place or in front of certain people, you need to hold back your tears and go somewhere else.
* Crying likely won't help you if you are living with a mood disorder. People who live with clinical depression or anxiety disorders are less likely to feel better after they have a good cry. If you find yourself feeling worse after crying, you should see a doctor or therapist to see if you have a mood disorder.

But if you can't stop the tears from falling, go ahead and let it all out — the odds are you'll feel better afterward.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Short & Long-Term Benefits of Exercise

By Jeanne Faulkner
Reviewed by QualityHealth's Medical Advisory Board

Exercise does a body good. Not only is it the key to losing weight, it's also the key to healthy, happy golden years. That's because exercise provides lifelong benefits for our health, well-being and appearance.

According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, more than 60 percent of adults don't get enough exercise and 25 percent don't exercise at all. As people age, they become more and more inactive too. The good news is that no matter when you start, what shape you're in or what your health challenges are, exercise will always provide benefits. So, what is exercise good for?

Short-term Benefits of Exercise

What will exercise do for you right now?

* Reduce stress in as fast as 25 minutes by lowering blood pressure and stress hormones and increasing endorphins (feel good hormones).

* Increases self-esteem and self-confidence because you know you're taking care of yourself

* Gives you a break in your day and a change of activity

Medium-Term Benefits of Exercise

What will exercise do for you in the near future?

* Help you lose weight and maintain a healthy body weight
* Strengthen your muscles and bones.
* Improve cardiovascular fitness and lower your blood pressure
* Improve muscle and joint flexibility
* Keep your blood sugar stable
* Contribute to your sense of well-being and reduce anxiety, stress and depression
* Keep your hair and skin healthy and glowing by increasing oxygen and nutrients reaching the skin surface.
* Rev up your metabolism by increasing muscle mass.
* Improve your sex life - people who exercise have sex more often and enjoy it more.
* Improve your immune system - you'll get fewer colds and flues
* Improve your digestive system and prevent constipation.

Long-Term Benefits of Exercise

What will exercise do for you over the course of your life?

* Reduce your chances for developing heart disease, cancer, diabetes, stroke, anxiety and depression.
* Reduce your chances of dying early.
* Keep you on your feet and out of a nursing home. Seniors who exercise have better balance and flexibility and stronger bones. They have fewer falls and breaks and less disability.
* Sharpen your thinking skills and maximize circulation to the brain.
* Improve your overall outlook on life because you're healthier, happier and looking good - Exercise is the real fountain of youth.

How much exercise do you need to reap all these benefits? Adults need:

* 2 hours and 30 minutes (150 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic activity (like brisk walking, biking or swimming) every week plus strength training two days per week using all major muscle groups.


* 1 hour and 15 minutes (75) of vigorous-intensity aerobics (like jogging or running) plus strength training two days per week.

If that sounds like a lot, it's only about 30 minutes per day and small increments add up. If you can't find time for 30 minutes in one session - try for three 10-minute sessions. It's all good.


Monday, July 26, 2010

McD's Fruit Smoothies

Some people, myself included, have been wondering the nutrition info on the McD's fruit smoothies.....well, I did a little digging & this is what I found.

A full-sized 12-oz. WILD BERRY Smoothie has 210 calories, 0.5g fat, and 2 - 3g fiber.

Not bad for a yummy, cool treat!

HG's Not-So-Secret BBQ Sauce

PER SERVING (half of recipe, about 3 tbsp.): 37 calories, 0g fat, 347mg sodium, 9g carbs, 0.5g fiber, 8g sugars, <1g protein -- POINTS® value 1*

1/4 cup canned tomato sauce
2 tbsp. ketchup
2 tsp. brown sugar (not packed)
2 tsp. cider vinegar
1/2 tsp. garlic powder

Mix well. (That's it!)


Happy BBQ-ing! YUM!!!!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Salt or No Salt?

Most doctors would agree that limiting your salt or better yet, foregoing it completely, would be the best for your overall health. Most of us know how dangerous salt can be for those with high blood pressure, but did you know that salt, and the sodium in it, is problematic even for those who have no high blood pressure issues?

Salt elevates blood pressure. Elevated blood pressure puts more wear and tear on your blood vessels, heart, kidneys, and other organs. Many studies have shown that you are much better off with lower blood pressure. Did you know that eating less salt might even delay the onset of high blood pressure? In fact, in some cases you can control your high blood pressure by restricting your salt with no drugs in the picture. Pretty cool, huh?

How many of you know the recommended amount of salt per day? It's 2,400 milligrams.

Here are a few ways you can cut down on your salt intake:

Leave the saltshaker off the table. We get enough salt in the food we eat where we don't need to add anymore at the table.

Try to stay away from prepared and processed foods. An easy quick change is to substitute frozen vegetables (minimal salt) for canned vegetables (usually salt-heavy).

Most foods labeled "lower salt" still have way too much salt. Make sure you read all the food labels for the actual salt and sodium content.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Banana Pudding Squares

Recipe by

prep time
30 min
total time
3 hr 30 min
24 servings

What You Need
35 Reduced Fat NILLA Wafers, finely crushed (about 1-1/4 cups)
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) margarine, melted
1 pkg. (8 oz.) PHILADELPHIA Neufchatel Cheese, softened
1/2 cup Powdered sugar
1 tub (8 oz.) COOL WHIP Sugar Free Whipped Topping, thawed, divided
3 Bananas, sliced
2 pkg. (1 oz. each) JELL-O Vanilla Flavor Fat Free Sugar Free Instant Pudding
3 cups cold fat-free milk
1/2 square BAKER'S Semi-Sweet Chocolate, grated

Make It
MIX crumbs and margarine; press onto bottom of 13x9-inch dish. Refrigerate until ready to use.

BEAT Neufchatel and sugar in medium bowl with whisk until blended. Stir in 1-1/2 cups COOL WHIP; spread over crust. Top with bananas.

BEAT pudding mixes and milk with whisk 2 min.; spread over bananas. Top with remaining COOL WHIP and chocolate. Refrigerate 3 hours.

Kraft Kitchens Tips
How to Evenly Spread COOL WHIP over Dessert
Stir remaining COOL WHIP gently in tub until creamy; spoon small dollops over dessert. Use small metal spatula to spread COOL WHIP over dessert.
How to Easily Remove Dessert from Dish
Line dish with foil before using, with ends of foil extending over sides of dish. Use foil handles to remove chilled dessert from dish before cutting to serve.

Makeover - How We Did It
We've made over this favorite dessert to save you 80 calories and 13 g of fat per serving compared to the traditional recipe. We used Reduced Fat NILLA Wafers and margarine instead of flour, butter and peanuts for the crust. In addition, we cut the amount of sugar and chocolate in half and used better-for-you products in the creamy layers. These simple changes result in a great-tasting dessert that can save you both fat and calories!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Take the Bloat Out of Your Diet

If you often feel bloated after eating, simple changes to your diet can help.
By Kristen Stewart
Medically reviewed by Lindsey Marcellin, MD, MPH

We all know the pleasures of a good meal, and how that can be followed by discomfort around the waistband when we've eaten too much. While occasional episodes of feeling bloated after eating are the price we pay for overindulgence, for some people this unpleasant sensation is an all too common occurrence.

But don't throw down your napkin in surrender just yet. There is hope. With the proper diet adjustments and simple changes in eating habits, it is possible to enjoy food and feel good afterward.

Why Am I Bloated After Eating?

In a nutshell, that uncomfortable, bloated-after-eating feeling is typically caused by too much intestinal gas and/or excessive contents in the intestine. This in turn makes the stomach swell and feel tight.

The exact cause of bloating, however, can vary from individual to individual. Some people feel bloated after eating because they simply ate too much. The more a person eats, the longer it takes for the food to move from the stomach to the small intestine for digestion and the more bloated after eating you can feel. Other people may be sensitive to certain types of food.

For people who are lactose-intolerant, consuming regular milk and dairy products can cause discomfort. In addition, too much fiber in your diet can contribute to bloating after eating.
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"High fiber intakes are not a problem if you are used to them, but going from a low to high [fiber diet] too rapidly can cause temporary discomfort in some people," says Susan B. Roberts, PhD, professor in the nutrition and psychiatry departments at Tufts University in Boston and author of The Instinct Diet (Workman). You definitely want to enjoy the health benefits of a high-fiber diet, but add fiber to your diet more gradually if you think that's the source of your bloated feeling.

The number of calories you eat can also be a trigger. The body secretes hormones from the walls of the intestines that can cause nausea and bloating when too many calories are consumed. Try eating four to six small meals rather than three large meals a day.

How to Eliminate That Bloated-After-Eating Feeling

"Eating smaller meals can help prevent bloating," says Joan Salge Blake, RD, clinical associate professor in the department of health sciences at Boston University. "And slow down!" Eating or drinking too quickly can cause excess air to be swallowed, which contributes to the problem, she says.

In addition, watch what you eat. "Fatty foods take longer to digest," says Lona Sandon, RD, assistant professor in the department of clinical nutrition at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. "Also, vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, and beans can cause more gas to be formed when digested in the small intestine." Of course, this doesn't mean you should avoid these healthful choices, just try to eat smaller portions of them at each sitting to see if that helps your body digest them more easily.

Here are some other ideas to relieve bloating after eating:

* Drink plenty of fluids, like water, to aid digestion. Sip slowly throughout the day, however; don't chug. as that will defeat the purpose. Carbonated beverages and drinks like coffee that have a diuretic effect don't count.
* Consider adding probiotic yogurt — Dannon is one brand to try — to your diet to encourage a healthy digestive tract. Keep in mind it may take a few weeks to notice its positive effects.
* Take a walk after you eat and get adequate exercise on a regular basis; both can ease bloating and help with overall digestion.

As for over-the-counter aids, "they're really only Band-Aids," says Dr. Roberts, "whereas eating the amount of calories your body needs and no more is a real cure."