Food Swap Friday – Spices for Salt

Any salt lovers out there? I like salt in moderation… my husband is a master at seasoning and never overdoes it, thankfully. But I don’t like overly salty  things except for the odd salt and vinegar chip craving, really. Almost everything else I can take or leave it. Of course, a little salt activates the flavor… but thats a LITTLE.

A lot is a bad thing… puts you at risk for tons of health issues, bloats you, can dull your taste buds… so what can we better season our food with? SPICES!

There is no shortage of spices you can use to create a wide, and I do mean WIDE variety of flavors. And it’s a lot healthier, too.

Do you have a favorite spice to cook with?


Tip Tuesday – Don’t Offer Unsolicited Advice About Diabetes

Saying this out of love, and out of recognition that most people mean well…

But… unsolicited advice, ESPECIALLY if you are not a Diabetic and have no idea what we go through, never goes over well.

Most of us are open for discussions and conversation, but offering up advice or opinions as though they are fact is just frustrating.

Truly most of the Diabetics I know are doing the best they can, and sometimes even thats not enough. I speak from experience when I say someone speaking matter of factly about how “if you just ate less sugar” or “eat less bagels” is not only insulting, but it is never that simple, ever.

I know you mean well, but unless you speak from experience and are down in the trenches with the rest of us Diabetics, please be careful about unsolicited advice. It often hurts feelings and makes us feel worse about where our health is.


Tip Tuesday – Working out in Nature

This girl right here is always right at home in nature! Always have been, always will be. Few things remain as constant!

Occasionally, I will take my workouts outside, to a park, on the beach… not as often as I would like (because I have to get home and shower, and still get all the way down to work!), but sometimes.

And honestly, besides the much better scenery, there are plenty of benefits to getting your fitness on outside! Here are a handful!

Do you know of any others? Do you often workout outdoors? This is also where Beachbody On Demand comes in really handy – you can take your workouts to wherever your heart desires!

6 benefits of working out in nature


Meal Planning Monday – Tips!

Meal Planning is a huge tool, but sometimes it can be overwhelming! My husband I don’t really plan out our dinners because we like to go based on what tickles our fancy that day, but I especially am looking to do a little more of it to really maximize our savings and usage of groceries (I really loathe wasting food or having to throw it away!)

Here are some helpful tips to make it a little less intimidating!

  • Overlap your ingredients – by selecting recipes with like ingredients, you are minimizing how much you have to buy and maximizing savings!
  • Use the grocery circulars to inspire your meals based on what is on sale, also maximizing your savings (this girl loves a sale!)
  • Keep your eyes on the nutrition facts – make sure your week is balanced, with plenty of fresh fruits and veggies, and lean proteins.
  • Allow a cheat meal – when you keep it healthy and clean 6 nights a week, one splurge dinner (or lunch, whatever), won’t hurt you – just make it count!

Start with a few basic meal planning tips, and work your way forward. It will get easier, and you will certainly be better off for it!

meal planning tips

Tip Tuesday – Eat Your Veggies

Helpful tips to maximize your vegetable intake:

As usual, making something easy to do is about forging new habits. Below you’ll find some of the simplest habits that’ll have you happily munching on more fruit and veg in the least amount of time. Once you’ve chiseled out these habits, getting your 8 a day really will be as natural to you as making a cup of coffee, or whipping up a sandwich.

Simple ways to eat more veggies:

  • Tip 1: Always add a serving of fruit or veg to (or with) your breakfast. This is definitely one of the easiest habits that’ll instantly give you 1-2 extra servings. Fruits and veggies can be blended to make a smoothie/shake, berries can be added to oatmeal, fruits and veggies can both be eaten plain, etc. And remember, fruit juice doesn’t count! We’re after real, whole food here. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, starting your day off with a serving of fruits and veggies is a really smart way to go.
  • Tip 2: Base every snack on either fruit or veg. While occasionally it’s fine to have a splurge snack, that needs to be the exception, not the rule. If you’re going to snack, make it real food. Have veggie sticks & hummus, 1/2 an avocado, a handful of grapes, or an apple with some almond butter. Healthy food doesn’t need to be difficult. So keep it simple to keep it quick.
  • Tip 3: Snack on veg sticks while preparing your dinner. This is an insanely simple tool that is grossly underutilized. When you’re in the kitchen with your chopping board out and a knife in hand, chop up some extra veg sticks to munch as you cook. Make it half a bell pepper one day (good luck stopping me at just half a bell pepper!), some cucumber another, or whatever else you have at hand. See, its actually not that hard! 🙂
  • Tip 4: If your meal is saucy, serve it on a base of grated veg. I’m a big fan of saucy meals. Curries, stews, even homemade Chinese dishes with a lot of sauce (healthy homemade sauce of course!) can lend themselves to this super quick technique. Simply wash and grate some raw veg, carrot, courgette or beetroot for example, or finely slice some Asian leafy greens or purple cabbage, pile them into the bottom of a large bowl, and top with your hot saucy meal. Takes a total of about 2 minutes, and you’ve got an extra 2-3 servings right there. There is also a tool called the Veggetti which can be used to make linguine out of zucchini, squash, etc. GREAT tool.

How are YOU doing with eating your veggies? Do you have a favorite way to eat them?

Fit Tip Friday – 5 Keys to Fitness Success

  1. Stay in good taste. Stop worrying so much about food and start enjoying it. The first step will help you avoid the boredom factor and maintain your healthy ways for a lifetime. Try satisfying foods that provide the nutrients you need and taste great; try tangy citrus fruits, yummy sweet potatoes, spice some grilled salmon, etc. Yes, enjoy all foods in moderation, but don’t deny yourself anything. All that really does is set you up to inevitably give in, in a BIG way. Avoid that by being sensible and satisfying a craving in a controlled manner.
  2. Choose to exercise… every day. Try new activities and mix up your workouts to stay motivated. Incorporate at least 30-60 minutes of moderate activity at least 3-5 times per week. Check out a new fitness class, enjoy a bike ride, swim the distance, challenge yourself with yoga or Pilates, or just simply jog the neighborhood. Beachbody also has a great line of programs that has something for EVERYONE – if interested in more information, let me know and I can help you figure out exactly what you want! Remember to also find little simple ways to keep active – take the stairs to a meeting, park a little further from the entrance, stroll with your pup through a park…
  3. Add, don’t subtract. Deprivation is a sure path to disappointment. Balance your eating with your exercise, but don’t focus on what you can’t have, focus on what you CAN have. Get more bang for your buck by looking for nutrient-dense foods – those that offer loads of nutrients for fewer calories. Balance your meals and activities by making nutrient-dense choices like fruits and vegetables, light and low fat cheeses, and whole grains and lean meats.
  4. Fuel your activity. Before you hit the pavement, have a snack. Try an energy bar, yogurt, or PB&J. After your workout, look to refuel with some carbs and protein right away.
  5. Take a break… take time to eat! Eat with your mouth and your mind by slowing down, enjoying your food, and taking a break to eat. Taking just a few moments to be aware of the foods we eat can lead to better decisions and tastier choices. Enjoy each bite, savor each taste, and choose foods that are good for you, pleasurable, and provide the nutrients you need!


Tip Tuesday – Staying Healthy When You Sit At A Desk All Day

So, I am one who works at a desk all day. I frequently get up, go to the bathroom, refill my water, walk just for the sake of stretching, etc. Standing all day would be bad news for my slightly weak back (it used to be very weak but regular exercise has strengthened my core considerably, which has helped my chronic back pain), so rather than going for a standing desk, I just make sure I get up very frequently, stretch, move around and whatnot.

One of my favorite websites, MindBodyGreen, has this helpful article for those of us who work at a desk all day and might need some tips on staying healthy in spite of our desk jobs.

Great tips found here – do you have any other tips to add? Do you work a desk job?