Friday, May 21, 2010

Monday, May 17, 2010

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10 Quick and Healthy Snacks

An easy-to-fix snack can also be healthy. From low-fat dairy to dressed-up vegetables, try these 10 ways to snack smart.

By Chris Iliades, MD
Medically reviewed by Pat F. Bass III, MD, MPH

Healthy snacks are important for both children and adults. Eating nutritious snacks can help you stay energized during the day, and help keep you from overeating at regular mealtimes or resorting to junk foods when hunger strikes. You can also use a healthy snack to bolster your nutritional intake over the course of your day.
Healthy snack options

"You should think of a quick snack as a mini-meal,” advises Debra J. Johnston, RD, registered dietitian and director of nutrition services at Remuda Ranch, a treatment program for eating disorders in Wickenburg, Ariz. “A healthy snack is a great opportunity to add the fruits, vegetables, fiber, protein, and dairy that you need in your diet. Mix your food groups and avoid unhealthy fats to snack smart."

10 Easy Snack Ideas

Here are healthy snack ideas that draw from different food groups to provide a good nutritional balance:

1. Up your dairy and fiber intake by mixing a 6-ounce container of plain, non-fat, Greek-style yogurt with 1/2 cup of berries and 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed, says Lanah J. Brennan, RD, a registered dietitian in Lafayette, La., and a nutrition blogger.

2. Make your own trail mix. Start with raw almonds, chopped walnuts, and pistachios — look for nuts without added salt or oil. Then add raisins or dried blueberries and cranberries; again, be sure to look for those without added sugar.

3. Mix 1/2 cup of low-fat cottage cheese with 1/2 cup of no-sugar-added applesauce and sprinkle with cinnamon for a tasty dairy and fruit combination.

4. Dip sliced cucumbers, radishes, and grape tomatoes in hummus. You can substitute raw carrots or any other favorite vegetable for a great high-fiber snack.

5. One of the best healthy snacks is popcorn, says Johnston. It’s low in calories and provides good dietary fiber. For variety, try spraying popcorn with low-fat, olive oil-based cooking spray instead of adding butter.

6. An old snack favorite that combines dairy, vegetables, and protein is “bugs on a log.” Spread peanut butter on a celery stick and then sprinkle with raisins or dried cranberries for a nutritious mini-meal.

7. Another quick and healthy snack is a half sandwich. Use whole-wheat bread and layer on some lean meat such as turkey for protein, a slice of cheese for dairy, and lettuce and tomato for vegetables.

8. For a snack you can carry in your pocket, a bag of toasted almonds can give you a quick boost that is loaded with protein, healthy fat, and fiber, advises Joan Salge Blake, MS, a registered dietitian and clinical assistant professor of nutrition at Boston University.

9. Healthy snacks can come from the freezer aisle, too. Frozen cubes of mango make a delicious snack. "Tropical fruit doesn't have to be just for vacation," says Blake. Frozen grapes and banana chunks are tasty, too.

10. Salsa is a great vegetable snack. One-half cup of salsa equals one vegetable serving. For a tasty salsa dipper, try whole-grain crackers.

Healthy snacks are not just a way to curb hunger during the day. A quick and easy snack can also be an opportunity to stick to your overall nutrition plan. "All foods can fit into a healthy meal plan when we incorporate balance, variety, and moderation," says Johnston.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Healthy Applesauce Cookies---Who needs butter?

Healthy Applesauce Cookies
1/4 cup olive oil
1 1/4 cup applesauce
4 egg whites
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
1-2 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
1 cup chocolate chips

Mix ingredient together in order given in a large bowl. You may need to add a little extra all-purpose flour to get the right consistency. Spoon onto greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool on cooling rack.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Keep Emergency Snacks in your Purse!

Keeping emergency snacks on hand is key during a busy summer full of tasty temptations. But not all guilt-free snacks are travel-friendly in high temps (sorry, No Sugar Added Fudgsicles!). Check out Hungry Girl's best on-the-go summer snacks...

FRUITS & FREEZE-DRIED FRUITS

Look for fruits that are firm and not too juicy (so they won't get squished in your bag or be messy to eat!), and seek out ones that don't require a lot of complicated peeling or deseeding. Here are a few of our favorite fruity picks...

Crispy Green Crispy Fruit
(1 bag = 36 - 39 calories, 0g fat, 8 - 9g carbs, 1g fiber -- POINTS® value 1*)

Apples (Fujis are our FAVORITES!)
(1 medium apple = 72 calories, <0.5g fat, 19g carbs, 3g fiber -- POINTS® value 1*)

Sensible Foods Crunch Dried Fruit
(1 bag = 70 - 84 calories, 0g fat, 18 - 19g carbs, 1 - 2g fiber -- POINTS® value 1*)

Gerber Graduates Mini Fruits
(1/4 cup = 25 - 35 calories, 0g fat, 6 - 8g carbs, <1 - 1g fiber -- POINTS® value 0 - 1*)
Note: There are approximately 4 servings per bag. The Apple and Banana Strawberry flavors have a POINTS® value of 0* per serving.

Bananas
(1 medium banana = 105 calories, <0.5g fat, 27g carbs, 3g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)

Pears
(1 medium pear = 96 calories, <0.5g fat, 25.5g carbs, 5g fiber -- POINTS® value 1*)

Brothers-All-Natural Fruit Crisps
(1 bag = 30 - 66 calories, 0g fat, 6 - 16g carbs, 1 - 2g fiber -- POINTS® value 0 - 1*)
Note: The Fuji Apple, White & Yellow Peach, and Strawberry flavors have a POINTS® value of 0* per serving.

HG Tip! Pack your produce pal in a small sealable baggie -- that way you can easily store the core or peel if you can't get to a trashcan right away.

LOLLIPOPS

Kick a candy craving to the curb with a purse-friendly, portion-controlled sucker. Stuff on a stick ROCKS! We heart these...

Tootsie Pops, Regular
(1 pop = 60 calories, 0g fat, 15g carbs, 0g fiber -- POINTS® value 1*)

Dum Dum Pops
(2 pops = 51 calories, 0g fat, 13g carbs, 0g fiber -- POINTS® value 1*)

Tootsie Caramel Apple Pops
(1 pop = 60 calories, 0.5g fat, 15g carbs, 0g fiber -- POINTS® value 1*)

PROTEIN PICKS

Stash a few of these snacks for a filling fix on the fly. A bag of each has 9 - 15g protein per serving.

Tasty Eats Soy Jerky
(0.5 oz. = 40 - 45 calories, <1 - 1.5g fat, 2 - 7g carbs, 1g fiber -- POINTS® value 1*)
Note: There are 2 - 3 servings per bag. And all flavors rock EXCEPT the chicken-flavored ones (we do NOT like those!).

Oh Boy! Oberto 100 Calorie Jerky Bites
(1 bag = 100 calories, 1g fat, 10g carbs, 0g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)

Crum Creek Brilliantly Blended Soy Nut Mix
(1 bag = 131 calories, 8g fat, 11g carbs, 5g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)

SINGLE-SERVING CRUNCHY SNACKS

Do you fight the urge to chew on chips by the fistful? One of these portion-controlled packs can be your new BFF...

Chex Mix 100 Calorie Snacks
(1 pouch = 100 calories, 2.5 - 3.5g fat, 17 - 18g carbs, 0 - 1g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)

Kettle Bakes Potato Chips in 100-Calorie Bags
(1 bag = 100 calories, 2.5g fat, 17g carbs, 2g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)

Quaker Mini Delights
(1 bag = 90 calories, 3.5 - 4g fat, 13 - 16g carbs, 0 - 1g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)

Pringles Stix
(1 pack = 90 calories, 3.5 - 4g fat, 11 - 12g carbs, 0g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)

Quaker Soy Crisps
(1 bag = 110 - 120 calories, 4 - 4.5g fat, 14 - 15g carbs, 2g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)

Brothers-All-Natural Potato Crisps (1 bag = 35 - 45 calories, 0g fat, 8 - 10g carbs, 1g fiber -- POINTS® value 0 - 1*)
Note: Select packages (the ones with 35 calories per bag) of all FOUR flavors of Brothers-All-Natural Potato Crisps have a POINTS® value of 0* per bag.

Blue Diamond Almonds in 100-Calorie Bags
(1 bag = 100 calories, 9g fat, 3g carbs, 2g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)

BARS & TREATS THAT WON'T MELT

Some snacks -- no matter how good -- are not meant to travel on hot summer days. These hard rockin' bars and bites can withstand the heat...

Nature Valley Crunchy Granola Bars
(2-bar pack = 160 - 190 calories, 6 - 7g fat, 26 - 30g carbs, 2g fiber -- POINTS® value 3 - 4*)

Quaker Sweet & Salty Crunch Bars
(2-bar pack = 150 calories, 5 - 6g fat, 23 - 25g carbs, 2g fiber -- POINTS® value 3*)

South Beach Living Granola Clusters
(1 package = 130 calories, 4g fat, 18g carbs, 6g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)

Quaker Granola Bites
(1 bag = 90 calories, 3.5g fat, 14g carbs, 2g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)

Kashi TLC Crunchy Granola Bars
(2-bar pack = 180 calories, 6g fat, 25 - 26g carbs, 4g fiber -- POINTS® value 3*)

Special K Snack Bites
(1 bag = 90 calories, 2g fat, 18g carbs, <1g fiber -- POINTS® value 2*)