Tuesday, March 20, 2018

5 Things Dietitians Wish You Knew About Losing Weight - Part 5 (end)

Some Gimmicks Just Might Work

If you’ve ever sworn off carbohydrates completely, only eaten fruit on an empty stomach, or mainlined grapefruit all day in the name of weight loss, you've been on a fad diet. Many diet plans are based on gimmicks, or little tricks that are supposed to help you be successful, but often don’t work. But the truth is that some of these gimmicks can work for some people. So if eating vegan for most of the day or not eating after 8 o'clock has worked for you in the past, then go with it! You don’t have to follow every aspect of a diet plan in order to be successful. A word of caution though: Some gimmicks go too far. If a diet plan permanently eliminates a whole food group or has you living on a diet of celery sticks and grapefruit, then look for a plan that is more well-rounded.

Comment:  I agree 100%.  When I was doing the low carb diet I eliminated almost ALL fruit.  I love fruit and now that I’m doing Weight Watchers I can have my fruit and usually eat it as a dessert or snack. 

Monday, March 19, 2018

5 Things Dietitians Wish You Knew About Losing Weight - Part 4


We’ve all heard the claims and seen the pictures of people who've gone from a size 12 to a 2 in just six weeks. While it’s natural to want these quick results, the fact is that the best type of weight loss is gradual. According to the Centers for Disease Control, a healthy rate of weight loss is 1-2 pounds per week. So, keep this in mind when setting your weight loss goal. Setting a realistic goal can keep you from feeling frustrated along the way. “Keeping it real” is important when choosing food, too, so opt for whole, unprocessed foods as often as you can.

Comment:  I have to admit that I want to see the weight loss go down at least every other day but that is so impractical.  I’ve made a rule that I will only weigh once a week and will quit skipping meals.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

5 Things Dietitians Wish You Knew About Losing Weight - Part 3

What You're Drinking Can Pack on the Pounds

Don’t forget that drinks can have a big impact on your weight-loss success. Whenever possible, opt for low-calorie or calorie-free beverages such as fat-free milk, water, or seltzer. If alcohol is a part of your social life, it can be difficult to abstain completely so make better choices and limit yourself to one light alcoholic beverage like a wine spritzer and drink water the rest of the time. When you drink water can also make a difference. A recent study showed that drinking sixteen ounces of water thirty minutes before a meal may aid weight loss.

Comment:  When I first gave up my sweet tea I found water to taste really ‘nasty.’  Now that I drink only water I find tea ‘nasty’ tasting.  And believe me, if you drink 16 oz. of water before a meal you will find yourself eating way less than you normally do.

Friday, March 16, 2018

5 Things Dietitians Wish You Knew About Losing Weight - Part 2

It May Sound Boring, but Small Changes Really Make a Big Difference

Whether it’s skipping that extra cookie or nixing the sugar in your daily coffee, seemingly small changes on a daily basis can add up to a big change in your weight. Since a five hundred calorie deficit each day leads to about a 1 pound loss each week, even a few changes can have a slimming effect. You’ll find five hundred calories in items such as 2 doughnuts, a bagel with cream cheese, 2.5 ounces of potato chips, or a chocolate mocha latte. Pretty simple, right?

Comment:  This actually works.  I quit drinking sweet tea and now drink nothing but water.  It did allow me to lose a couple of pounds.  But, you can’t stop at just one change.  You have to keep eliminating items.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

5 Things Dietitians Wish You Knew About Losing Weight - Part 1

This is from Everyday Health and quite interesting.  It will be listed in 5 parts.

Despite What Everyone Tells You, You Don’t Need to Detox

There are a number of programs that advertise the benefits of an "extreme cleanse" for good health, but the truth is that you don’t need one. While it may not be as exciting, eating a healthy diet of lean protein, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats is the healthiest way to lose weight (and maintain it). The truth is that your liver and kidneys take care of all of your body’s detoxification needs, so there’s no need to follow any special diet in January or the rest of the year.

Comment:  I'm glad to hear this one.  I hate detoxing!  

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Carbs in Vegetables

This chart shows which veggies we should be eating if we're watching our carbs.  I found this chart on Verywell and even though I'm no longer 'counting carbs' I'm still watching them with my Weight Watcher's diet.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Top 5 Fruits for Weight Loss

I love fruit and when I was on a low carb diet I wasn't able to eat very much.  Now that I'm on Weight Watchers I can have my fruit.  This article shows me what fruits are the best for me and my diet.  It's from verywell Fit .  Out of these 5 fruit I like 4.  Never been a fan of raspberries but you can bet I'll be enjoying all the rest.

#1 Apple
It’s no secret that fruit is a smart part of a healthy diet. When a snack attack hits, pay a visit to your fruit bowl. Whatever’s in there is likely to be better for you than the contents of your pantry. But is all fruit created equal? Let's investigate which fruits are best if you’re looking to lose weight.
Apples are a common favorite. They're the ultimate snack: filling, juicy, crunchy, and portable. Studies have even shown that eating three apples per day can help with weight loss - not surprising, considering they’re chock-full of fiber, a nutrient that’s known to boost feelings of fullness and ward off hunger pangs.
There are plenty of ways to get your daily dose of apple: Chow down on a whole Fuji (apples are such a packable snack!), add pieces to your oatmeal, throw slices into a salad, bake some with your chicken, or cook up a low-cal dessert. 
1 medium apple: 95 calories

#2 Watermelon
Watermelon is a double whammy: It’s low in calories with a high water content. This means you can eat two entire cups of watermelon for less than 100 calories and your stomach will feel like you’ve eaten more because the fruit is more than 90 percent water. Staying hydrated helps you feel full!
If you’re looking to lower your daily calorie intake, incorporating watermelon into your diet is a smart move. Munch on it whenever you feel the urge to snack. This way, you’ll avoid higher-calorie foods and satisfy your sweet tooth. 
1 cup diced watermelon: 46 calories,

#3 Raspberries
Raspberries are small but mighty! These babies are low in calories, and even lower when you consider that they’re high in insoluble (indigestible) fiber. When you eat a 64-calorie cup of raspberries, you’re really only digesting about 32 calories. Put that together with the fact that raspberries have the highest fiber content of any fruit (1 cup = 8g fiber), and we’ve got ourselves a weight-loss winner.
1 cup raspberries: 64 calories, 0.5g fat, 1mg sodium, 14.5g carbs, 8g fiber, 5.5g sugars, 1.5g protein 

#4 Grapefruit
Grapefruit gives you a lot of bang for your calorie buck. A medium grapefruit has only around 80 calories, and like watermelon, it’s more than 90 percent water. By the time you cut up the grapefruit, sprinkle it with a bit of no-calorie sweetener, and eat the entire thing, you’re not gonna have the time or inclination to eat anything else.
Plus, studies have shown that a compound in grapefruit called naringin could lower blood sugar and ultimately lead to weight loss.  So enjoy some grapefruit at every opportunity – squeeze it into your water,  throw some wedges into your salad, or use it like lemon to flavor your food.
Keep in mind that consuming grapefruit with certain medications could have adverse health effects. If you’re on any meds, check with your doctor before adding grapefruit to your diet.
1 medium grapefruit: 82 calories,

#5 Oranges
If grapefruit isn’t your go-to citrus pick, you’re in luck. Oranges are an amazing weight-loss fruit too. High in fiber and water content, they’ll help you feel full.
Another great thing about oranges? There’s almost always a variety in season and there’s no shortage of ways to add the fruit to your diet. Eat a whole orange as a snack or use mandarin orange segments in salads. 
1 large orange: 86 calories,

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Why add Tuna to your Diet

I love tuna but have only eaten it from a can.  Many times I've read or heard that the type of tuna doesn't matter, its all the same.  Apparently not.  

This information is from Very Well Fit.

Benefits of Canned Tuna

The nutritional value of canned tuna speaks for itself.
When packed in water, a 6.5-ounce can of tuna contains:

144 calories
Two grams of fat
No saturated fat
No carbohydrates
No sugar
32 grams of protein
412 grams of salt (18 percent of the recommended daily value)
15 percent of the recommended daily value of iron
For those on a low-salt diet, there are even versions that offer 25 percent less sodium.

Health Benefits of Tuna

The omega-3 fatty acids found in tuna are known to promote good heart health. According to the American Heart Association (AHA), these essential fats can help decrease triglycerides in the blood, lower the risk of arrhythmia (irregular heartbeats), and slow the buildup of plaque in the arteries. Because of this, the AHA recommends that you consume at least two servings of fish per week.

With the being said, the amount of omega-3 fatty acids in a three-ounce serving can vary significantly based on the type of fish consumed. Among the tuna varieties, both fresh and canned:

Fresh bluefin tuna offers 1,000 to 1,500 milligrams.
Canned white albacore tuna offers 500 to 1,000 milligrams.
Canned light tuna offers 200 to 500 milligrams.
Fresh skipjack tuna offers 200 to 500 milligrams.
Fresh yellowfin tuna offers 200 milligrams or less.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Food Strategies for Losing Weight

These are some really great tips!  They are from Everyday Health

If you want to feel full all day on less food, focus on these eating strategies:

Get enough lean protein and fiber. A study of 22 men who changed the amount of protein in their diets for 18-day periods showed that those who ate the least protein were the most likely to report being hungry. "Protein is the number one thing to help you feel full," says Emily Banes, RD, clinical dietitian at Houston Northwest Medical Center. "The second thing is fiber."

Eat a rainbow of fruits and vegetables. Researchers tracked the weight-loss success of 71 obese women between 20 and 60 years of age on a low-fat diet. Half of the women were also told to increase their fruit and vegetable intake. At the end of one year, both groups of women had lost weight, but the women who ate the most fruits and veggies reported the greatest weight loss and were less likely to say they felt hungry on any given day. In fact, when the researchers crunched the data, they found that whether the women reported feeling hungry frequently predicted their ability to lose weight. Other studies have shown that changing your eating habits to focus on these water- and fiber-rich foods will help you maintain weight loss for up to six years.

Sip soup. Adding two low-calorie soups to your diet every day could stave off hunger pangs and keep you satisfied longer. Choose soups that are broth-based, not cream-based, to reduce the calorie count; also look for soups that are low in sodium. Consider chunky, pureed vegetable soups, as they have been shown to produce the most lasting full feeling. Timing your soup so that you have it before a meal also reduces the amount you eat at that meal by about 20 percent, according to a study of 53 overweight adults.

Eat whole grains. A serving of whole grains will stick with you longer than a serving of refined wheat bread or any other refined flour product, for that matter. Most refined flour is white and often bleached.

Pick "airy" snacks. If you must snack and you don't have a piece of fruit or a veggie tray on hand, choose the snack food that has more air in it — think cheese puffs instead of potato chips, rice cakes instead of cookies. You will feel just as full as you would if you ate the same serving size of another snack, but you will consume fewer calories on average.

Another way to fight off hunger is to develop a "low-energy density" eating plan. This means that you can eat a large quantity of foods that do not have a high calorie count. Learning about portion sizes and counting calories is one way to approach this, but you can also try the plate method, which dictates that half your plate be full of veggies, one-quarter dedicated to a starch (preferably whole grain), and one-quarter to a lean protein.

And speaking of plates, it's worth noting that a study of 45 adults demonstrated that the oft-repeated advice to eat on a smaller plate if you want to feel like you have more food in front of you actually has no effect on the amount you eat at a meal (if you are serving yourself) or your feeling of being full.

So, if you prefer, you can go back to eating on your good china — just make sure to emphasize lean proteins, fruits, and veggies.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Your Eating Speed: Too Fast Means You Overeat

This is an article I found on Everyday Health that is well worth sharing, even if you aren't trying to lose weight.  I've often heard that you should 'drink' your food and this explains what is meant by that saying.

“Olympic speed eaters will usually eat until they feel full,” says Gee, who isn’t talking about culinary athletes, but rather, with humor, the average Joe and Jane who shovel in their food every night.

“It takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes for the signal of [fullness] to reach the brain,” explains Gee. “This is where portion control goes out the window.”

In other words, it takes some time for your stomach to talk to your brain, and speed eaters are taking in too much too fast before the message can be received. Eating more slowly could give that all-important message the time to register before you undermine your best calorie-counting intentions with an extra scoop of mac ’n’ cheese.

Your basic goal: “Try not to be the first person finished at the table,” advises Gee.

Your Eating Speed: Chew Slowly for Comfort and Control

Your eating habits and your digestion begin with good chewing habits. “Chewing your food is the first step in digestion, and skipping this step makes it harder for proper digestion,” says Gee.
Taking time to chew not only slows your eating speed, but can also help you feel better after a meal. “Many of my patients tell me how surprised they are that they have less heartburn as a result of chewing more and slowing down. They do not use antacids anymore.”

Also, chewing slowly allows you to better enjoy your food, a tasty benefit for people who are trying to appreciate the value of smaller portions.

Your Eating Speed: Fast, Slow, or Moderate?

Dinner isn’t a speed race, but you might wonder where your eating speed rates in comparison to friends and family. There are no standard measures of eating speed, and how fast or slow you eat depends a lot on what the food is, your utensils, and how much there is of it. But you know you are a slow eater if you are the last one still eating at the table. On the other hand, says Gee, “Fast eaters are the first ones finished, usually in five to six minutes.” You want to clock yourself somewhere in between, with the moderate eaters.

Your Eating Speed: Enjoying What You Eat

Another benefit to chewing slowly: Food tastes better.

"We see higher [taste] ratings at the slower rate," says dietitian Kathleen Melanson, RD, PhD, assistant professor of nutrition and food at the University of Rhode Island. Melanson and colleagues tested the relationship between the rate of eating and factors such as how many calories are consumed and participants’ reported levels of satisfaction. Volunteers ate certain types of meals, first slowly and then, later, fast. The study found that, calorie for calorie, you will experience greater palatability at the slower rate, explains Melanson.

She has also demonstrated that people who slowly eat low-calorie foods eat nearly half as many calories as those who quickly eat high-calorie foods. "Conventionally, slow eating has been presented as just taking more time to eat,” Melanson says, but her research shows that what really matters is how many calories you eat per minute.

Your Eating Speed: Tips for Slowing Down

Melanson's method combines slow eating with being aware of the taste of food and when you feel full. She recommends:

Take small bites.
Chew each bite 15 to 20 times.
Savor the food as you chew.
Swallow before taking the next bite.
Pause between bites and take a sip of a no-calorie beverage, if you like.
Between bites, be aware of how your hunger is being sated.

For people who have limited time to eat lunch at school or work, Melanson suggests you eat the main part of your meal slowly and keep additional food items, such as an apple, to be eaten later when you have time.

Gee recommends setting your fork or spoon down between bites. “I assign chopsticks to really difficult cases,” she adds.

By trying these methods, you may steal a little time from other activities, but you’ll also lose more weight — and that’s a good trade-off.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Cake Balls

1 box cake mix (any flavor)
1 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened

Make cake according to package directions.  While the cake is still hot, spoon it into a large bowl.  Using a potato masher, mash the cream cheese into the cake.  Make sure it's well blended and there are no lumps from the cake nor the cream cheese.  Roll into walnut size balls.  Refrigerate.  Makes about 3 dozen.

Comment:  I made these using a Butter Pecan cake mix and added about 1/2 cup of chopped pecans.  I had decided to roll the balls in powdered sugar but it ended up dissolving so I'm omitting that from the recipe.  You can use ANY flavor of cake mix you want.  A friend of mine made these using red velvet and dipped the balls into melted white chocolate.  This recipe is so easy that there is no way you can mess it up!  Imagine - strawberry or chocolate with nuts or butter with coconut, etc. 'Think With Your Taste Buds'!

Monday, December 4, 2017

Easy Chopped Spinach

I use a lot of spinach.  I love using it with chicken or egg dishes but have even worked up a couple of recipes using pork.  In the past I've always bought frozen, chopped spinach, keeping at least 2 packages in the freezer at all times.   Many times I've had my taste buds set for a dish just to remember that my spinach is still in the freezer so I put off making my dish until the next day.  And we all know that when using frozen spinach you not only have to thaw it out before using, you also have to go through the process of squeezing out the liquid.   Well.... I've found a solution to both of these little problems.

While looking through the produce department I found fresh baby spinach on sale.  I picked up two bags, got them home and, like a lot of times when I buy foods on sale, I realized that I wouldn't be using 2 whole bags of spinach before it started to wilt and I would have to throw out what wasn't used.  So, I did what I frequently do and that was put one bag in the freezer.  A couple of weeks later I found a recipe I wanted to make that called for spinach.  I grabbed the bag of frozen baby spinach and when I took it out of the freezer the leaves started breaking up.  Since the recipe called for chopped spinach I simply started mashing the bag.  This broke it up into the size I needed keeping me from thawing it out and then cutting it up.  Also.... I didn't have to squeeze the liquid out!  It didn't seem to have any liquids to squeeze.  I simply added my spinach to my pan and completed my dish. 

This is a great time saver and makes cooking with spinach so easy.  Do make sure you buy the kind that says it is pre-washed or if you buy it by the pound, wash it first and DRY it completely before putting it into a sealed bag and into the freezer.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Things That Shouldn't go into the Dishwasher - part 16

Sterling Silver Knives

Sterling silver flatware goes through a dishwasher just as well as stainless steel, with one exception: Many sterling silver knives have a hollow handle and the heat of the dishwasher can cause the glue that holds the blade to the handle to melt and separate. This happens whether the blade is sterling or stainless steel. Hand wash instead.

Comment:  Did not know this but I've always washed silver by hand and dried it immediately.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Things That Shouldn't go into the Dishwasher - part 15

Vintage China, Delicate Crystal and Repaired Items

For any glass or china heirlooms, skip the dishwasher and carefully hand wash. This is especially important for any item that has been repaired. The high heat and harsh detergents will cause the adhesives used to weaken and you may lose any small pieces.

Delicate crystal should be hand washed to prevent chipping. If you decide to use the dishwasher, use the top rack and place the glasses between the tines, not over them, to help avoid breakage. Remember, some lead crystal will become cloudy.

Comments:  Not guilty!  

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Things That Shouldn't go into the Dishwasher - part 14

Gold Flatware and Metalic Trimmed China

While sterling silver flatware travels through a dishwasher well, gold-colored flatware will dull and discolor in the dishwasher due to the harsh detergent.

Porcelain and fine china are dishwasher safe unless they have metallic trim or images. The harsh detergent and the strong water action of the jets can cause the metallic work to flake away. With any delicate china, take care when loading so that pieces don't knock together and cause chipping.

Comment:  This is one that has to be washed with a soft touch no matter how you wash it.  

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Things That Shouldn't go into the Dishwasher - part 13

Containers With Paper Labels

Along with your deli containers, you may also save glass food jars for storage. There's no problem with placing the jars in the dishwasher, IF you remove the paper labels first. If you don't, the paper and adhesive may come off and clog the dishwasher drain and food disposal system.

Extra tip: One of the best label/adhesive removers on the market is Un-Du with a built-in scraper. 

Comment:  Never heard of the Un-Du but sounds like something that might be worth checking into.  I have washed containers before but have had enough brain to soak the paper part in hot water to remove the label before going into the dishwasher.

Friday, October 20, 2017

Things That Shouldn't go into the Dishwasher - part 12

Thin Plastic Containers

If you save every butter tub and deli container to use for storage, be prepared to loose a few if you place them in the dishwasher. The high heat can cause them to melt or warp.

When you place them in the dishwasher, use the top rack only and skip the high heat drying cycle. Remove from the dishwasher to air dry.

Comment:  Learned my lesson the hard way with this one.  A lid got hot, crinkled up and ended up on the heating element of the dishwasher.  Never again.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Things That Shouldn't go into the Dishwasher - part 11

Printed or Hand Painted Glassware

The techniques for commercial printing on glassware have improved but they are not always infallible in the dishwasher. That harsh detergent and the force of the water spray can remove the paint in just one or two washes.

And what good is a glass measuring cup with no lines?

Comment:  I have noticed over the years that the markings eventually came off my measuring cup.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Things That Shouldn't go into the Dishwasher - part 10

Insulated Glasses, Tumblers and Thermal Containers

Plastic and metal insulated cups, tumblers and containers are great for keeping hot things hot and cold things cold. Most are constructed with two layers of material with an airspace between the two. It's that airspace that provides the insulation.

While some containers are labeled as dishwasher safe, many are not. It is best to hand wash both plastic and metal insulated containers. If you decide to place one in the dishwasher, opt for the top rack and skip the high heat of the drying cycle.

Comments:  I'm waiting on the list of what I CAN put in my dishwasher!

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Things That Shouldn't go into the Dishwasher - part 9

Acrylic or Melamine Dishes

Lightweight, non-breakable acrylic or melamine dishware is very popular due to the bright colors and patterns. Unfortunately, the high water and drying temperatures and harsh dishwasher detergents can ruin the dishes. After several washings, especially for cheaper sets, there can be hairline cracks and loss of color and design.

If you love them and want them to last, hand wash.

Comment:  I've wasted a few of these dishes in the past.  Guess I now know why.