Category Archives: Healthy Foods
If you can’t shop right, you can’t eat right. Dieting and eating clean (low-fat, high protein, whole foods) starts at the grocery store.
Below is a shopping list categorized by what you can eat, and how much you can eat. You see, not all high-calorie foods are bad. High calorie foods are necessary, but you just have to limit them.
For instance, nuts are very healthy, but the calories add up fast so they are in the “Use Sparingly” column. However, you can eat a TON of fish and asparagus so they’re in the “Enjoy Plenty” column.
How do you want to spend your 211 calories?
4oz tilapia AND 11 spears of asparagus AND 1 cup of cauliflower
OR 1/4 cup (which is only 1 1/4 ounce) of almonds
Both of the above options are 211 calories, but with one option you can eat a LOT and the other option you only can eat a LITTLE. When you choose correctly, this is what I call eating smart – and the smarter you eat, the happier you will be, the healthier you will feel, and the faster you will reach your goal!
Dieter’s Shopping List
Click on the list below to open in a new window and enlarge or print.
NOTE: This doesn’t cover all the foods we eat, but these are just some of the most common foods on our own shopping list to give you some ideas. This list is mainly a list of whole foods and doesn’t include items like milk, vinegar, creamer, etc.
What are some items that are always on YOUR grocery list?
My friend GiGi is one Kale of a blogger. She totally cracks me up with her fun wit, but inspires me with her passion for eating healthy – and just making healthy living super fun. After one of her recent blogs about Kale, I’ve just had Kale on the brain – and on the plate!
Ironically, while I was picking up some kale at the grocery store this weekend, Steve was researching Kale online and was amazed with it’s nutrition. By the time he got hom that night, I already had Kale cooked and waiting – and had no clue he had already gotten on a kale kick himself! Great minds think alike!
See What GiGi has to say about Kale:
Don’t believe us? Check out What WebMD says about Kale:
“One cup of kale contains 36 calories, 5 grams of fiber, and 15% of the daily requirement of calcium and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), 40% of magnesium, 180% of vitamin A, 200% of vitamin C, and 1,020% of vitamin K. It is also a good source of minerals copper, potassium, iron, manganese, and phosphorus.
Kale’s health benefits are primarily linked to the high concentration and excellent source of antioxidant vitamins A, C, and K — and sulphur-containing phytonutrients.
Carotenoids and flavonoids are the specific types of antioxidants associated with many of the anti-cancer health benefits. Kale is also rich in the eye-health promoting lutein and zeaxanthin compounds.
Beyond antioxidants, the fiber content of cruciferous kale binds bile acids and helps lower blood cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of heart disease, especially when kale is cooked instead of raw.” Read the whole article, The Truth About Kale.
Simple Kickin’ Kale Recipe
Kick it even another notch by serving it with your favorite hot sauce.
Do you eat Kale? How do you cook it? Share you kale story!
I was in the mood for something different last night so I whipped this together and it was totally delish!! After I posted it on facebook & instagram, a recipe was requested so here you go!
3 1/2 oz Grilled Jerk Chicken (sliced & diced)
2 Cups Mixed Greens
1/3 Cup Thinly sliced Mango
1/8 Cup Chopped Onion
1 TBS Low-Sugar Craisins
1 TBS Honey Roasted Almond Accents
1/2 Cup Papaya Dressing
Total Calories: 344 Calories, 24.5gm Protein. I put 7 ounces of chicken on Steve’s salad (452 calories and 40gms of protein).
TIP: The smaller you slice and dice your toppings, the more you can spread small portions and still get delicious flavor in beach bite.
Papaya & Maui Onion Dressing
1/2 small Maui onion (or any sweet white onion)
1 Large Papayas, seeded and peeled
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1 TBS sesame seed oil
1/4 Cup Olive Oil
1/2 Cup Water
salt and pepper
1 TBS Stevia
Blend until smooth. Super healthy, super yummy, and 1/2 a CUP has just as many calories as 2 tablespoons of most “Light” dressing! So enjoy!
Makes 10 1/2 Cup Servings. 82 Calories
When you get tired of eating chicken, sometimes you just need a BURGER!! Have no fear dieters, I’m not going to tempt you with a high-calorie hamburger. On the contrary, I’m going to share my Breadless Turkey Burger I made today for lunch. I fixed 2 burgers for an awesome burgerlicious 300 calorie lunch! This is almost too simple to call a “recipe” but I thought you’d enjoy the caloric breakdown. Honestly, it’s exactly what I needed today. I scraped the plate and really felt like I just had a REAL burger! What a treat! Enjoy!
BREADLESS TURKEY BURGER RECIPE
2.2oz Grilled Turkey Burger (106 cal)
1 teaspoon Low Fat Hellman’s Mayo (5 cal)
2 tsp Ketchup (13 cal)
1/4 tsp Mustard (2 cal)
2 oz Pickles (0 cal)
1/8 cup Sliced Onion (8 cal)
1/4 Tomatoes (6 cal)
Top with Shredded Lettuce (5 cal)
GRAB A FORK & DIVE IN!
Turkey Burger: Ground turkey, egg white, onions & seasoning
When it comes to living healthy, working out and eating right, there is no one-size-fits-all system. There is not one grocery list that everyone would be happy with, and there is not one particular exercise that would work for every single person on the planet.
We all have different goals and different needs. We all have different activity levels and food preferences. Therefore, we have to supplement what we are missing, or don’t like, in order to get the most out of our life and health.
Sure, anyone can go hard-core on their eating or exercise for a season but, when it comes to a healthy lifestyle, you have to be realistic with what will work for you. This is where supplements come in. Before we continue, let’s take a look at what a supplement really is. Here’s what Webster says.
Supplement: Something added to complete a thing, make up for a deficiency, or extend or strengthen the whole.
Synonyms: Add to, compliment, reinforce, augment, extend, fill out.
Unfortunately, many people don’t use supplements how they are designed. They rely on an energy supplement for ALL their energy, or their protein supplement to get ALL their protein. That isn’t how a supplement is supposed to work. Supplements were created to reinforce your diet and exercise program, not replace it.
Getting all the nutrients you need to succeed is challenging in today’s world, and with our hectic schedules. If you are like me, and you work hard in the gym and care about your health, you don’t want to throw it away on a poor diet. You want your body to be as healthy as possible, to heal as quickly as possible, and to get results as fast as possible. THAT’S why supplements are so valuable.
For example, one of my favorite quick fixes is the Total Lean Breakfast Bar. Some would argue that a homemade healthy balanced meal would be a better choice. My response is this: if I am eating a Breakfast Bar, then the only other choice was eating nothing at all. So, the Breakfast Bar was an excellent choice.
You see, I don’t rely on protein bars and/or pre-packaged meals and snacks for fuel. I use them when whole food isn’t an option. Protein shakes and bars are a fantastic solution for people on the go. Before I supplemented my diet, I skipped breakfast and never got enough protein in my diet. While I eat very healthy, now supplements help me get the nutrients I was once lacking, so I can reach my health and fitness goals.
If we lived back in the old days, we may not need to add a workout to our schedule. Working on the farm, or doing daily task might have kept our bodies more fit naturally. However, in today’s computer age, where we drive everywhere we need to go and communicate with everyone by a computerized device, we do a lot less walking and expend a lot fewer calories. So, we have to supplement. That’s why exercise is SO important today. The same way most people don’t get all the nutrients they need in their food, most people don’t get enough exercise through regular daily living.
Once you begin exercising, then you learn that not every workout works for you. One thing I love about the Total Lean Challenge workout program is that Steve shows all kinds of modifications. If you don’t have weights, he makes suggestions of how you can “supplement”. Whether you are making the exercise easier or harder, he shows various options so you can adjust that workout to fit your needs.
A healthy lifestyle is doable for everyone at anytime in his or her life – we just all need to learn to get the right supplements. If you lack activity, you supplement it with exercise. If you don’t have all the right tools to exercise, you supplement with what you do have. If you can’t get all the nutrients you need, you supplement it with what you are missing. Whether you supplement a little or a lot, you are better, healthier and happier because you are more complete – reinforced, augmented, extended, fulfilled.
Today’s Surprise Saturday Workout
Try one of the workout routines led by Steve Pfiester or do the Surprise Saturday workout for today (described below). I’m doing the Saturday Workout today! I will be running the bridges with my BFF, Kristie. The route: 5.5 mile loop from Riverside Park, over the Barber Bridge to Indian River Drive, then over the 17th Bridge back over to A1A back to Route 60 to Riverside Park, which will take us about an hour.
CLICK HERE to check out the Total Lean challenge. Try one of the workouts, or try them all. The Total Lean challenge offers a 90 day meal plan and workout program – and you can join the challenge anytime!!
5 Ways I Supplement
1. Total Lean Vitamins. I simply cannot get all the vitamins in nutrients I need, and stay within my desired caloric allowance without vitamins.
2. Total Lean Shake 25. I have one shake right after my workout, and another shake before I go to bed if I haven’t met my daily protein goal. For me, I try to get .75-1gm of protein per pound of ideal bodyweight.
3. Total Lean Breakfast Bars. I keep these on hand in case I am in a hurry and need to eat on the run. They are super yummy and go so good with my coffee!
5. Activity. I wear the Jawbone UP that helps me track my steps. My goal is to walk 10,000 steps a day. If I know I won’t reach my goal, I go for a 3-mile run to supplement my lack of activity on inactive days.
Realistic Healthy Lifestyle Tips:
1. Cook in advance. I cook all my meat on Sundays (see my vlog below) so I have meat already prepared for all my meals. My favorite meats to cook is grilled chicken, pulled chicken in a crock pot, turkey meatloaf, apple, walnut & chicken salad, curry chicken salad and tuna salad. Chicken and tuna salads are a great solution for eating on the run when a microwave isn’t handy.
2. Plan my workout for the week. If I don’t make a plan, I am not as motivated to workout. If you are new to working out, or don’t like to think, the Total Lean Challenge workout program makes planning easy. Today’s workout is the Saturday Surprise workout, so today I just have to walk, hike or bike for 60 minutes! How’s that for easy planning?!
3. Set weekly goals. I have a few guidelines I try to follow so I never get out of my routine. Workout no fewer than 3 times a week, and never go more than 3 days without exercise. No matter what happens, always start fresh and strong Monday.
Curry Chicken Salad
Mix it all up and pop it in the fridge to chill. Cut a cucumber in half, longways, and scoop out the seeds with a tablespoon until it makes a nice boat. Serve the chicken salad on the cucumber boat. Serve with wheat thins if you are serving guests. Dieters skip the chips and just enjoy it as is.
FitFluential LLC compensated me for this Campaign. All opinions are my own.
Dieters often walk around starving and tired during a low-fat low-calorie diet. Why? Well, it’s my belief that people typically cut out too much fat when dieting. Most people switch to low-fat and fat-free foods, and avoid cooking with fats, just because they think that’s what you are “supposed to do”when trying to lose weight. Unfortunately, when they cut fat, they cut out the benefits of fat.
If dieting is a struggle for you, here are 3 reasons you may want to add fat back into your diet.
What if you could keep more fuel in the tank? You can! Since fat takes longer to digest, that’s exactly what happens – fat stays in the tank (stomach) longer than other foods, keeping you fueled up and more energetic throughout the day.
If you feel hungry after a meal, you probably just didn’t have enough healthy fat in that meal. Since fat takes longer to digest, fat also keeps you feeling full longer too – making dieters much happier.
People who reduce fat, tend to pile on more ingredients in attempt to make up for the flavor lost when cutting fat. They are also more apt to graze more after dinner too. Surprisingly, people who eat meals higher in fat are typically more satisfied after eating a smaller meal, opposed to a big low-fat meal.
Good Fats include olive oil, avocado, oily fish, seeds and nuts. Of course there are MANY more benefits to boosting healthy fats besides these 3 tips, but they sure can help – and we need all the help we can get when dieting!!
If you are like me and you miss your sweet breakfast when going Paleo or reducing carbs – then this is for you! My breakfasts have always consisted of oatmeal, greek yogurt, breakfast bread, bagel and peanut butter or a protein shake. Since we’ve been giving the Paleo diet a test run, I can’t have any of those things so I’ve been beside myself trying to find a breakfast that I really can enjoy. Many Paleo eaters are content with eating scrambled eggs, omelets, steak and eggs and anything else eggy. Not me. That is not my idea of yummy. Although I do eat eggs, they aren’t my favorite. So, I decided to scout out some breakfast ideas.
First, I found a recipe for protein bars at FastPaleo.com. I loved the idea it had a ton of eggs in it, but wouldn’t taste like traditional eggy meals. Also, the sweet potato idea intrigued me – especially since I was looking for ways to put more healthy, low-glycemic carbs in my meals. I loved that it was low in fat and didn’t have a ton of nuts, seeds or fruit in it too, like many other recipes I found. Then I played around with the ingredients I saw on one of their recipes, added in some of my own ideas, and came up with a great new way to eat eggs that I could enjoy. The end result was breakfast that tasted a lot like french toast without the bread, fat and extra sugary calories! (take note parents, this may be a great way to trick your kid into eating more eggs!)
Here’s what I did…
- 2 Large Mashed Sweet Potatoes
- 6 Eggs, beaten (I used egg beaters)
- 2 Tbs Almond meal
- 2 tsp Cinnamon
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- 2 tbs honey to sweeten (non-paleo peeps can add stevia or more honey)
- 1 scoop of natural unsweetened whey protein
Mix all ingredients (I used a mixer to make it more of a french bread consistency). If you look at the original recipe, you can see I went off plan. I mashed my sweet potatoes instead of used shredded yams. I didn’t have coconut flour, so I used almond meal, and I added protein powder to beef up my protein content. I also added the honey to sweeten it up a bit.
Heat for 25 minutes on 350, let cool and cut into squares. I cut mine into 15 bars. 2 squares = 82 calories, 9.1gm protein, 8.7gm carbs, 1g fat. This is a great breakfast you can cook in advance for a quick microwaveable breakfast on the go! Eat alone or top with a drizzle of honey and a few berries for a really delicious low calorie breakfast!
I encourage you to play around with the ingredients yourself. Also, share with me your favorite Paleo breakfast ideas. I’d love to try them and I’m sure there are some really great recipes out there I’d love to add to my collection of yummy fun!
Why Paleo? Paleo eating is simply good healthy eating – it is low in carbs, high in protein, low in bad fats, and high healthy fats. It is gluten-free, free of processed foods and a lot of junk that causes health issues and inflammation in the body. It forces you to get more nutrients from whole foods and to not be so dependent on unhealthy quick fixes. I’m still a newbie, but I have to admit, despite the huge learning curve and having to make serious changes – I’m liking it so far. I feel healthy and strong!
My unofficial disclaimer: I must confess, I am not a chef. I LOVE to cook, but I make stuff up as I go and don’t follow the rules. I am a simple, creative cook who just enjoys playing in the kitchen and eating healthy. If you want a chef, go see Paula Dean. Don’t hate, appreciate! ha! :)
In this video, I share what food prep day is like at the Pfiesters, including this paleo meal I made for our food exchange at our club, which I found this recipe found at http://www.PaleOMG.com. Prepare to succeed.
Ropa Vieja & Cuban Cauliflower “Rice”
- 1.5-2lbs chuck roast
- 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1 yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1 (6 oz) can tomato sauce
- 1 (14 oz) can diced tomatoes
- 3 tablespoons capers, drained
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 bay leaf
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 head of cauliflower, stem removed and roughly chopped
- 3 thick sliced of bacon, diced (I skipped the bacon)
- 1 (4 oz) can tomato sauce
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- salt and pepper, to taste
CLICK HERE to read the rest of the cooking directions & get more healthy Paleo meals.
Since we didn’t do a traditional turkey dinner for Thanksgiving, I ended up roasting a turkey after the Holiday. Before I completely gobbled up the turkey, I decided it was time to put the rest of the meat to even better use. Being the soup loving fool that I am, I couldn’t wait to turn that turkey into a liquid pot of low-calorie gold – and it didn’t take long to decide to go Mexican! My favorite! Here’s what I did…
2-3 pounds turkey or chicken
1 tablespoon coconut oil
3-4 teaspoons of fajita seasoning (a mix of ground cumin, chili powder, garlic powder and cayenne)
1 large onion
1 green pepper
1 yellow pepper
2-3 fire roasted tomatos (I grilled them)
2 jalapeno peppers, diced
2 quarts (8 cups) chicken stock
Juice of 2-3 limes
1 cup cilantro, chopped
2 small diced tomatoes
1/2 head of cabbage (small)
salt & pepper to taste
avocado and fresh cilantro for garnish (optional)
Pull chicken or turkey and put in a large stew pot with chicken stock and seasonings.
Sautee green onions and peppers in coconut oil (and salt)
Compine all the ingredients together and cook slowly on low heat.
Top with fresh avocado & cilantro and serve.
Approximately 215 calories for 2 cups
(Calories for optional avocado not included)
DIET TIP: I eat a lot of soup – almost one serving per day. Soup is a great food to eat while dieting. It’s tasty, it takes longer to eat (so it satisfies my taste buds longer, it can have a ton of flavor without a ton of calories) and the liquid base is super filling.
When it comes to meal planning, one of the biggest obstacles for dieters is breakfast. Some people are just not hungry that early in the day. Others have a sensitive stomach and can’t stomach just any kind of food in the morning. And, most of us are just so darn busy, rushing to get out the door, we don’t make time for the most important meal of the day. So, here are a few things you can try!
10 Breakfast items that are always on my Shopping List:
- Lavish Oatmeal
- Egg Beaters
- Chobani greek yogurt
- Thomas’ whole wheat bagel thins
- La Tortilla low-carb wraps
- Trop 50 orange juice
- Back to Nature cranberry pecan granola
- Designer Whey vanilla protein (available at Publix)
- Jimmy Dean D’Lights breakfast meals
- Smucker’s Natural Peanut Butter
- and of course, a bunch of fresh produce!!
15 Healthy & Simple Breakfast Ideas
Since planning is key to success with any diet, here are some breakfast ideas to help give you more ideas on food to fuel you through the day. Remember, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
- Egg Beaters, ham and cheese on a toasted Thomas’ whole wheat bagel thin.
- Chobani greek yogurt topped with fresh fruit and a sprinkle of Back to Nature cranberry pecan granola
- Toasted 1/2 a Thomas’ whole grain bagel (or whole bagel thin) with natural Smucker’s Natural Peanut Butter and honey
- La Tortilla low-carb wrap, low-fat veggie cream cheese, tomato, lettuce, onion, ham, cheese and sprouts.
- Easy Lavish Oatmeal comes in a pouch that doubles as a measuring cup, perfect for rushed mornings.
- Your choice of plain whole oats (oatmeal) with milk, real butter, fresh or dried fruit and chopped nuts
- Egg Beaters, leftover grilled asparagus, and melted cheese on a toasted Thomas’ whole wheat bagel thin.
- Jimmy Dean D’Lights turkey sausage breakfast bowl (230 calories) or sausage, egg white cheese bagel (260 cal) are great in a rush.
- Egg beaters, leftover spinach, tomato and low-fat feta cheese on toasted Thomas’ whole wheat bagel thin.
- Protein shake, like Designer Whey vanilla protein, Smucker’s Natural Peanut Butter , milk (or soy milk) and whole oats (like Coaches Oats) for crunch. Or, Designer Whey vanilla protein, Trop 50 orange juice, banana and yogurt is great for fruit smoothie lovers.
- Egg Beater Casserole. Layer thin 100-calorie bread or bagel thins, Egg Beaters and your favorite toppings like leftover chopped meat, onions, tomatoes, spinach, and low-fat cheese. Great for cooking in advance!
- La Tortilla low-carb wrap wrap with sliced bananas and Smucker’s Natural Peanut Butter - quick, easy and yummy! Add sprouts for a fun crunch!
- Breakfast burrito with Egg Beaters, leftover chicken, onion, cheese and fresh salsa on a La Tortilla low-carb wrap
- Thomas’ whole wheat bagel thin, plain cream cheese spread, sliced smoked salmon (available at Sam’s Club), lemon juice and capers. (Steve’s favorite breakfast)
- Always have Designer Whey protein bars on hand for emergency mornings when you run out of time. My favorite is their triple chocolate crunch!
Breakfast doesn’t have to be fancy. It doesn’t have to be complicated or big – but it needs to be a smart choice. The better you eat in the morning, the better you will feel throughout the day.