Tag Archives: romano

Create a Micro-environment of Health

Italy 096Spring is in the air full force and this time of year I love to clean out closets, cabinets and my garage. It is always necessary to clean out the old to make room for the new! Did you know that the most effective way to stay healthy is to clean out your refrigerator, pantry and freezer and eliminate the unhealthy foods and stock it with healthy food choices? This process will allow you to select something healthy next time you feel like snacking!

Items to have on hand for healthy eating include lean meats like chicken or turkey, canned tuna, hard cooked eggs or hummus.  A fruit bowl on the counter could include some bananas, apples and pears or have cut up fruit in the refrigerator such as pineapple, berries or cantaloupe melon. Handy snacking items for vegetables include cut up peppers, cucumbers, carrots, celery, small grape tomatoes and leaf lettuce, spinach or kale for salads. In the dairy section select high protein Greek yogurts and almond milk for smoothies which have fewer carbohydrates than regular milk. For healthy carbohydrates select better choices like oatmeal, quinoa, shredded wheat and high fiber crackers like Wasa or Triscuits and pitas or tortillas for sandwiches. I like Joseph’s brand for pitas and Mission gluten free tortillas for sandwiches.

By creating a micro-environment of health in your home and office you are on the road to creating better health for yourself and your loved ones! Here’s to a wonderful Spring & Memorial Day Weekend!

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Go Green for St. Patty’s Day!

Green Veggies are in!

Broccoli is a cruciferous (Brassica family) vegetable and has anti-cancer properties.  Nutrient-wise it has lots of vitamin C, carotenoids, vitamin K, folic acid and calcium. Steam until it is bright green and just tender. Add a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese and a spritz of fresh lemon juice. Broccoli is also delicious with the herb tarragon.

Green Beans contain carotenoid phytonutrients such as beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin (these phytonutrients protect the eyes) which provide anti-inflammatory properties. They are a concentrated source of vitamin K and also vitamins A and C. Steam green beans for 5 minutes and dress them with a healthy Mediterranean dressing such as 3 T. olive oil, 2 tsp. lemon juice, 2 medium gloves of garlic (minced) and ground pepper.

Green Cabbage. This is a popular cruciferous vegetable (Brassica family) and ranges in color from light to dark green. You can select the best tasting cabbage by choosing heads that have a vibrant, bright color and are firm, heavy and dense. Cabbage is an excellent source of vitamin K & C, folic acid, manganese and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine). Cutting cabbage thin (1/4 inch) slices and cooking it al dente for only 5 minutes is my secret for preventing the formation of smelly compounds often associated with cooking cabbage. Enjoy this holiday with some corned beef! The larger leaves can also be filled inside with herbs, cheese or even meat or rice, roll them up firmly and steamed.

Zucchini (green). This is one of my favorite vegetables. It is an excellent source of vitamins C, A & K, manganese, magnesium, potassium and folic acid. It can be sautéed for 3 minutes and served with a Mediterranean dressing or make a Cool Zucchini Salad by grating 2 medium zucchinis, 2 medium carrots and tossing this with 1 tsp. each chopped fresh mint and oregano. Then add pepper to taste and 3 T. extra virgin olive oil. For a creamy dressing add 1 cup of plain low fat yogurt. Yum!

Tsfl Romanesca BroccoliFlower

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Time for the New- Out With the Old!

photo (3)Spring is almost here! It’s a time for rebirth and new growth. What new things are you growing in your life that will re-ignite your passion & energy? It is now time for that seasonal reboot. Take an internal inventory. Are you meeting your health goals, did you sign up for that new class, are you planning that vacation you have always wanted? It is time for those new projects & goals to take root. As you plan the NEW things remember to get rid of some of the “old” patterns or projects in your life. Your passion will be ignited and you will soar to a new height by reaching for something “new” this Spring

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Time for a Seasonal Re-Boot

Spring FlowersIf you are like me you love the longer lighter evenings that “daylight savings time” brings to the northeast and with it comes the promise of warmer days ahead.  Just as new life begins with the budding of trees and flowers we look forward to new activities to refresh our outlook and stay energized.  Here are a few “seasonal reboot” ideas for you!

Eat lighter! Winter recipes include hot soups and stews but for Spring & Summer think salads. Asparagus is a great Spring veggie that offers plenty of vitamin K, C, A, folate and potassium.  There are over 300 varieties of asparagus but only 20 are edible. White asparagus are kept covered and out of sunlight while they grow which prevents the formation of chlorophyll. White is more tender than the green and purple varieties. Purple asparagus has additional health promoting benefits of anthcyanins that give it its purple color! Some people enjoy purple asparagus raw since it is so tender. I love to grill or broil asparagus and provided a homemade dressing recipe below to use on grilled asparagus.

Spring Clean!  Out with the old and in with the new! This includes your kitchen as well.  Check out your baking pans and get rid of all your scratched pans. Invest in some new spatulas, colorful placemats and some unique spices, herbs and teas!  This time of year I enjoy the perennial herbs sprouting in my garden such as oregano, lavender, spearmint and lemon balm.  The latter make great teas!

Exercise outside!  Change your work-out routine to include outside activities.  My personal trainer loves to take us outside.  I have a 25 mile bike event in June (yes, 25 miles in one day) so I am enjoying outside cycling to augment by inside training.

Explore a nearby “new” place!  The best way to spend a Saturday is to enjoy an outside Farmers Market. This way you can buy fresh local veggies, fruits and even bread and animal products- cheese. Below is my favorite Mediterranean dressing recipe to use on your fresh grilled veggies! I hope you enjoy our seasonal reboot!

Mediterranean Dressing– 3 Tbps. extra virgin olive oil, 2 medium gloves garlic (chopped or pressed), 2 tsp. lemon juice and sea salt and pepper to taste! Research shows that carotenoids found in foods are best absorbed when consumed in oils!

 

 

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52 Tips! Lose Weight Without Dieting!

52 Ways to Lose Weight without Ever Having to Go on a Diet…
This month I am sharing with you 26 ways you can reach your weight loss goals without ever having to go on a “diet”. Implement one new thing each week of the year, keep it simple, but take daily action steps and I know you will succeed! You will get the other 26 Ways in two weeks time so stay tuned!

1.  Eat breakfast. Studies have found that people who start their day off with a breakfast high in fiber and protein actually eat fewer calories throughout the day than their breakfast skipping counterparts. Go ahead and start your day with fuel to empower you for success!

2.  Drink half your body weight in water. For example, a 150 pound person should consume 75 ounces of water a day.

3.  Walk 10,000 steps a day. Wear a pedometer and track your progress.

4.  When you eat, leave two bites behind. This simple strategy can easily save 200 – 500 calories a day.

5.  Ask yourself “Am I hungry? Would I eat an apple?” If the answer is no, then you are not hungry and you are eating out of another emotion.

6.  Eat from the ground up, not the box down. Consume more fresh foods and limit or remove packaged and processed foods from your menu.

7.  Perk up with green tea. Replace your afternoon cup of coffee or soda with green tea. Green tea is a calorie free beverage that also has metabolism boosting and cancer fighting properties.

8.  Clean out the pantry and fridge. Remove foods that make it difficult to control portion sizes.

9.  Avoid or limit alcohol intake. Alcohol not only adds empty calories to your day, but it also decreases overall inhibitions. When inhibitions are decreased you are more likely to overeat foods high in fat and sugar.

10. Buy desserts and/or treats for your kid’s birthday party or holiday event that are not your personal favorite. It is much easier to say “no thank you” to the brownies when chocolate cupcakes are your favorite!

11. Fill (and keep refilling) the fruit bowl. Keep it in a convenient place for a quick “grab and go” snack.

12. Move the candy jar to an “out of sight, out of mind” location.

13. Keep a food journal. Record not only what you eat, but also how much you consume.

14. Snack on berries, cherries, and apple slices.

15. Workout in the morning.

16. Dine In. Restaurant meals are generally higher in calories, sodium, fat, and sugar than the home cooked counterpart.

17. Snack on raw veggies. Try dipping carrots, celery, cucumber, broccoli and red bell pepper slices in salsa!

18. Get your ZZZ’s! Aim for at least 6 – 8 hours of sleep every night. Being sleep deprived will hinder weight loss efforts.

19. Dining out? Order your entree from the appetizer menu – just make sure it is not the fried onion rings!

20. Slow down. Take time to slow down and relax the mind and body.

21. Find an exercise partner.

22. Visualize your success. Create a vision board with the goals you are striving to achieve. Put it in a place where you can look at it on a daily basis.

23. Replace one soda (or other sugar beverage) with water. Doing this once a day can save 150 calories, resulting in 15 pounds over the course of a year.

24. Bring your lunch to work.

25. Eat with sticks…chopsticks! This simple tip can help slow down your eating, helping you become more in tune with your internal hunger and fullness cues.

26. Divide your plate in half. Fill one half with veggies and then divide the other side in two…fill with a lean protein and high fiber carbohydrate source.

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Planning & Prep to Eat Right!

Clients often ask me-“What is the secret to success for fitness and health?” Well the truth is there is no one secret, but there is one common characteristic shared by people who do reach their goals: planning and preparation. And when it comes to weight loss, the first step in preparing for success is to be stocked with food in your frig and freezer to fuel and nourish your body to help you reach your goals. You may not want to or need to purchase all of the foods listed to keep on hand for a healthy more vibrant life. Mix it up. Some of the ingredients- especially the produce will vary depending on your work, travel and social schedule.

Fresh produce. An essentail to healthier living is to eat more fruits and veggies. A few staples include: baby spinach, lettuce, salad fixings like cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots, onion, peppers, mushrooms and herbs. Salads can also have some berries, apples, dried fruits, oranges or other citrus. Fresh fruits such as bananas, apples, peaches or whatever is in season will facilitate healthier snacking choices.

Quick Produce alternatives: If you never seem to have the time to wash and cut up your produce you could purchase more “ready to use items” such as pre-cut and pre-washed produce including baby carrots, lettuce, other greens, mushrooms and steamable frozen veggies.

Additional Foods to stock the fridge with: eggs, liquid egg whites, non-fat greek yogurt, reduced fat milk (either cow, rice, almond or soy), reduced fat cheeeses, guacamole, trans-fat free margarine, light butter spreads, tofu noodles, salad dressings with moderate sodium and lower carbs (less than 6 gms per serving), 100% fruit spreads, natural peanut butter or other nut butters, vinegars, hummus and your favorite condiments such as mustards, mayo, spreads and sauces such as low sodium soy sauce.

Freezer Essentials: A well stocked freezer will ensure that you have foods on hand to whip up a healthy meal. Here are a few recommendations to keep on hand.
Frozen veggies (stock your favorites), unsweetened fruits such as berries or mixed fruit varieties (great for smoothies), boneless, skinless chicken or turkey breast, 95% lean beef or ground chicken/turkey, frozen shrimp, garden burgers, frozen fish, bagels & waffles, sorbet, gluten free bread (for those in need of GF), frozen pastas.

Carve out some time and take inventory of what you have and then stock up on what you need! Planning is the key to success!

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7 Nutrition Principles for Olympic Performance

The Summer Olympic games are being held for only two weeks but athletes spend years training for and mastering their sport. Becoming an Olympic athlete not only takes a lot of hard work, time and dedication but requires good nutrition to enhance workouts and maximize performance.  While most of us are not training to be Olympic athletes, we can learn from the nutrition practices these star athletes implement on a daily basis.  Continue reading

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Nantucket Recipe

To escape the Summer heat I went to one of my favorite places to walk on the beach – Nantucket, Mass.  There were a variety of shells, pepples and lots of sand to enjoy. After one of my power walks I enjoyed this salad to fortify myself .  One of the other things I love about Nantucket is the beautiful flowers, especially the Hydreaneas, so I included this photo!  Enjoy all your Summer adventures!

Hearty Summer Salad: Nantucket Style! Serves 4

1 head romaine lettuce, washed and chopped; 1 carrot cut in slices diagonally, 1 stalk celery sliced diagonally, 1 med. red pepper diced, 1 large tomato seeded and sliced, 1/4 cup garbanzo beans, 1 small apple cored and diced, 1/2 jicama sliced, 1 small cucumber sliced, 1/4 cup diced red onion, 1/4 cup raisins, 1/4 cup almonds or walnuts, 1/4 cup parsley chopped. Toss all together and serve with your favorite dressing.

 

 

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