How healthy is your salad?

Salads are healthy right? Of course!

However, what you put in and on top of your salad predicts the out come of if it’s healthy or not.  This morning I read an article about the 7 worst salad offenders out there and thought you – my readers – would enjoy hearing about it.  So I summed up the article for you! 

Check out the worst 7 salad toppings out there:

1) Creamy Dressings
These are probably the worst dressings you can choose. Take ranch dressing, for example, one serving of two tablespoons has 140 calories — and 130 of those calories are coming from FAT. Other dressings like blue cheese, Caesar, parmesan, or chipotle all fall under this category of dressings to avoid. Not only are they loaded with fat, but they also have high levels of sodium and very little nutritional value.

Healthy Alternative: Stick to vinaigrettes — however, you need to be careful because these can also be high in salt content too.  I would recommend using a little olive oil with balsamic vinaigrette for your salads.  Now, are you still wanting, needing, can’t stop thinking about the yummy salad dressing you’re used too?  Have it – but not a lot.  Put some on the side and dip the tip of your fork into the dressing before you put it in the salad. 

2) Glazed Nuts
Nuts are a great addition to your salads – they are a perfect source of healthy fats.  But stay clear of nuts that have been kettle-cooked and glazed with sugar.  So many companies sell glazed walnuts and pecans and so many of you think they’re still okay to eat.  Stores and restaurants prepare salads to go and they include glazed walnuts and pecans sprinkled on top. that is, until they’re kettle-cooked and glazed with sugar. 

Healthy Alternative: Stick to dry-roasted nuts to save on calories. I like to add sliced almonds to my salads, but chopped pistachios, pecans, and walnuts are a good addition too. Remember to not go overboard.  An ounce will do.

3) Crunchy Tortilla Chips or Shells
Wherever Mexican food is sold, people always order something like a “Southwestern Salad” thinking that they’re making the healthier choice by not ordering tacos or other Mexican dishes. They couldn’t be more wrong! These salads are loaded with cheese, creamy dressings, and high-calorie tortilla chips — or worse — served in a tortilla bowl!! So please, just stay far away from these kinds of salads, and especially tortilla chips or shells, from now on.

Healthy Alternative: You can still order a Mexican-inspired salad, just make some modifications. Request balsamic dressing on the side instead of ranch and hold the tortilla chips and cheese, but keep the rest of the healthy goodies like black beans, corn, and tomatoes.

4) Fried Chicken or Shrimp
I always enjoy a serving of protein in my salads, and encourage you to do the same, but steer clear of anything fried. Adding anything fried to your salad just adds unnecessary calories and tons of sodium. It’s not just fried chicken I’m referring to here — this covers fried onions and fried seafood too… well really, anything fried!!  Adding these will turn your salad into one salad that would have the same amount of calories that you should consume in a day – I’m serious. Wouldn’t you rather save your calories for say… dessert? Oh please don’t make me go into healthy desserts! Haha!

Healthy Alternative: If you’re going to add some protein to your salad, choose grilled items only. Consider healthier protein options like shrimp, tuna, eggs, or a veggie burger.

5) Cheese
First let me clarify, cheese isn’t ALL bad. Daily servings of dairy products can boost your body’s fat-burning potential. Studies have shown that dairy-rich diets may help weight loss and the body’s ability to burn fat. Yet when some people add cheese to a salad, they really pile it on — and that’s why it’s on this list. But some cheeses are more nutritional than others, and there are HEALTHY ways to add them to your salad.

Healthy Alternative: Feta is a great choice for salads because it is lower in fat and calories than most cheeses.  If you really need cheese on a salad, buy the “Laughing Cow” cheese triangles and have one.  This helps with portion control.  However, in my opinion, you just don’t need the cheese!!

6) “Craisins”
Craisins, or dried cranberries, are a fruit, so that means they’re good for you, right? Well, not exactly. I know these are a popular item to add onto a salad, and many pre-prepared salads in stores like Walmart and Metro have these ingredients as a topping. But really, they have more sugar than you may realize. Craisins and raisins, are called “nature’s candy” for a reason! Though they are fat-free and relatively low calorie at 130 for a ¼ cup — they’re full of sugar — 29 grams to be exact.

Healthy Alternative: If you can’t give ’em up, I suggest counting them out and only adding 10 or so to your salad. Otherwise, why not add other seasonal fruits to sweeten up your salads? My favourite is adding a mix of diced apple with almonds!! It’s tasty – try it!

7) Croutons
Croutons are an easy way to ruin your salad by adding refined carbohydrates. Croutons from a popular brand are about 30 calories for just six pieces. Do most people put only six croutons on their salad? Not likely. These toppings can also have high sodium levels depending on how they’re prepared.

Healthy Alternative: There is no alternative – you do not need bread put on a salad, simple as that.

Hope you benefited from reading this and I hope you are enjoying your long weekend!!

Danielle

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Do Quick Fixes really work?

Quick-fix diet methods, like colonics, cleanses and fasting do more harm than good to your body — and can actually hurt your weight-loss efforts.

Whenever you see any type of get-skinny-fast diet or program, be wary  — there is NO quick road to weight loss!

No shortcuts, no secret pills, no magic potions — got it? Want to lose weight and keep it off? The only way to is to eat healthy foods, and exercise regularly.  TRUST ME!! I didn’t lose that 100lbs by fasting, or doing cleanses.  I got my ass to the gym and I ate real food.  Yes I know I worked within a weight loss company, but I did not use any of the pills to assist with my initial weight loss.  I was dedicated and motivated to lose that weight.

I know many of you already know quick fixes don’t work, but that doesn’t stop individuals from wondering all the time whether certain trendy cleanses and colonics really work. While cleanses or colonics may be necessary for medical reasons (testing foods to find an allergy, surgical procedure, etc.), there is absolutely no reason you should treat these methods as beneficial to weight-loss. Here’s why:

No medical research shows that there are any health benefits or true weight loss from colonics. The only weight loss that colonics promote is from the removal of fluid and waste from your bowels. Claims that colonics help to detoxify your body and restore your colon’s health are complete crap. No pun intended. Here’s the thing: Your digestive system and bowels naturally eliminate waste material and bacteria — you don’t need a colonic to do this! Not only do colonics fail to help your weight-loss efforts, but they can have negative side effects. Colonics have been shown to create electrolyte imbalances, which can result in nausea, vomiting, bloating and muscle cramps. Unless your doctor schedules you for a colonic for medical reasons, I would avoid getting one — and save the $55 to $95 per treatment cost too.

“Fasting cleanses” do more harm to your body than good. The term cleanse makes me laugh, because the only thing that detoxes your body is clean eating, nutrients that support your liver and kidneys and water. Stop eating processed crap and start eating whole, real foods. Thinking that drinking a concoction of lemon, syrup and cayenne pepper or drinking salt water and laxative tea, like the Master Cleanse, will “detoxify” your body and create permanent weight loss is completely inaccurate. Sure, doing cleanses can make you lose weight quick but in a month they put that weight back on. You starve your body for a period of time, and then when you start eating again, you put all that weight back on — and then some. You’re screwing with your metabolism to boot and that’s dangerous.  So STOP IT.

Fasting will destroy your metabolism. From a biochemical perspective, fasting throws your body into starvation mode. When you don’t provide your body with nutrients, it sends signals that you are now in starvation mode. Which means your body releases hormones that will slow down your metabolism, cannibalize your muscles, and store fat. The physiological facts: Since fat is needed for survival to insulate our bodies, we store it, but muscle is expendable. When you restrict nutrients to your body, your body will start to eat its own muscle tissue, and (double whammy) become more proficient at storing fat. The main point: Don’t fast, unless it’s for a religious purpose that you feel strongly about, and even then, be careful to only do it only for a short period of time.

There are no quick fixes when it comes to weight loss. The key to “cleansing” your body is drinking water and eating whole, real foods. Colonics, fasting cleanses, and fasting methods are just sending your body and your metabolism into starvation mode — which can create long-term negative side effects that aren’t worth the few pounds you initially lost.

How to STOP Negative Self Talk!

 

I found this article and sent it to my clients.  I LOVE this article, I hope you enjoy xoxo

How to Stop Negative Self-Talk

If there is anything that can keep you from being productive and partaking in the abundance that life has to offer, it’s negative self talk. This is the type of talk, and thoughts, that create or reinforce existing sub-conscious beliefs that will keep you from what you desire. If you want to enjoy life the way you should, you’ll need to learn how to stop negative self-talk for good.

Do You Suffer From Negative Self-Talk?

If you have a tendency to believe that a tough situation is worse than what it is, it’s negative self-talk. If you’re wondering why you’re not enjoying the journey of your life, it’s negative self-talk. And if you find yourself more often in a state of unhappiness than happiness, it could very well be because of chronic negative self-talk.

Negative self-talk comes from relating your current situation with some past experience. If you’ve tried to succeed at something and haven’t been able to shake off past failures, or have been afraid of being unable to match the previous levels of success you’ve achieved, you’ve got to change your thought process.

Self-Awareness is the First Step

The good news is, if you can recognize your negative self-talk for what it really is—nothing more than unnecessary baggage from your past that you carry into the present by way of your own thinking—then you can choose to gradually shift your way of thinking to create thoughts, words, and beliefs that will make you feel better and put you in a better position to achieve success.

The thing to understand about negative self-talk is that it reflects your internalized negative feelings about yourself rather than the truth. In other words, just because you feel it doesn’t make it true.

Your subconscious mind does not distinguish between true or false. It doesn’t not make judgments or have the ability to have an opinion. It simply takes what is believed to be true– in the case of self-talk this would be doubt and fear—and it makes it feel real. In turn, this “truth” is compounded and reinforced and solidifies your belief and you will receive a negative result.

How to Stop Negative Self-Talk

Fortunately, you can prevent yourself from getting caught up in this negative self-talk. It helps that in the morning you allow your first thoughts to be positive and if a negative thought slips in that you recognize it before it snowballs out of control. That one negative thought can take an otherwise promising day and blow it to pieces.

It’s normal to have negative thoughts every now and but once you realize what’s going on, focus on positive thoughts to drown out the negative. Eventually, your mood will follow and you’ll be able to get back on track.

Researchers say we have more than 60,000 thoughts per day so being present to monitor these thoughts is a daunting task. So rather than trying to master your thoughts try this simple practice: view your feelings as an emotional warning system. When you’re feeling good you must be having good thoughts, and when you’re feeling bad you must be having bad thoughts. Simple.

So when you’re feeling lousy, ask yourself what bad feelings am I having? At that point you can change your thoughts. And when you change your thoughts, you change the way you feel, and only then can you change your life experience.

The bottom line is this: the power of your thoughts and beliefs are immense. They can lift you up and take you to the highest highs or drag you down to the lowest lows. The greatest leaders and most famous entertainers and athletes exercise healthy habits of thinking that springboard them into a fulfilling and prosperous life, and so can you!

 

Whole Eggs – Good or Bad?

Jillian Michaels released an article about if you should or shouldn’t eat whole eggs – check it out below 🙂 ENJOY!!


The Truth: Not only are eggs a fantastic source of lean protein and heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, but they contain some pretty important nutrients.

One large egg has roughly 186 milligrams of cholesterol — all of which is found in the egg’s yolk. Since dietary cholesterol was once thought to be the major cause of unhealthy blood cholesterol, egg yolks have been demonized and health nuts stick to eating strictly egg whites. Now, don’t get me wrong — egg whites are a great, healthy source of protein, but there is definitely room for WHOLE eggs in a healthy diet. As long as you haven’t been advised otherwise by your doctor, you can enjoy the many nutritional benefits of a whole egg. So, yes, you can have an egg and eat the yolk too! Here are a few reasons why.

The real threat to high cholesterol is saturated and trans fats, not dietary cholesterol. Years ago, when scientists learned that high blood cholesterol was associated with heart disease, foods high in cholesterol were thought to be the leading cause of unhealthy blood cholesterol. Now, 25 years later, scientists have come to the conclusion that cholesterol in food is not the true villain — saturated and trans fats have a much greater effect on blood cholesterol. Your body actually needs the cholesterol in meat and eggs to make testosterone, which helps to increase energy and helps to build more calorie-building muscle. In fact, one study at the University of Connecticut found that the fat in egg yolks actually helps to reduce LDL (“bad” cholesterol). So banish the old notion that an egg, specifically the yolk, is hazardous to your health. According to the American Heart Association, the recommended limit of dietary cholesterol is 300 milligrams for people with normal LDL (bad) cholesterol levels — and one egg contains 185 milligrams of dietary cholesterol. (If you have a history of high cholesterol or heart disease in your family, though, you may want to consult your doctor about how to limit your cholesterol intake.)

Whole eggs are full of beneficial vitamins and minerals. Whole eggs are a nearly perfect food, with almost every essential vitamin and mineral our bodies need to function. It is one of the few natural food sources of vitamin D and contains 7 grams of high-quality protein. Whole eggs are also full of omega-3 fatty acids and deliver many of the B vitamins and nutrients — B6, B12, riboflavin, folate, and choline — that, in fact, are believed to help prevent heart disease. L-arginine, an amino acid found in eggs, are critical to the body’s production of protein and the release of growth hormones. Another amino acid found in eggs, leucine, also helps the body produce growth hormones as well as regulate blood sugar levels. The yolk itself contains most of these vitamins and minerals, plus half of its protein. When you eat only the egg whites, you’re missing out on all of these nutritional benefits and are getting only 3.5 grams, or half, of the protein.

It’s all in the preparation. If you’re frying your eggs in saturated-fat-laden butter and serving them with saturated-fat-laden bacon — they will have a negative impact on your cholesterol levels. Instead, heat olive oil on low heat in a cast-iron skillet to cook your egg the healthiest way. When cooking omelets, frittatas, or any other dish that involves a larger quantity of eggs, I like to use a mix of whole eggs with egg whites. The reason is that whole eggs do have a decent amount of fat. So, if you’re cooking something with more than two eggs, I recommend subbing in egg whites for some of the whole eggs.

JILLIAN’S TIP OF THE DAY

The Bottom Line

Whole eggs are a power food packed with essential vitamins and minerals our bodies need — a majority of these vitamins and minerals are found in the egg yolk. Eating whole eggs in moderation is not bad for your health, but when making dishes with a large quantity of eggs, try to balance the count of whole eggs and egg whites.

I’m baffled

So, I’m sitting here shaking my head.  I’m wondering why people chose to do crazy things to lose weight?

Trust me – I’ve tried them all.  I’ve tried every tactic and trick in the book to lose weight QUICKLY.  However, this only happened AFTER I lost my 100lbs.  Can you believe that at 169lbs I still thought I was fat?  I still believed I had to lose more – I HAD JUST LOST 103lbs. But it’s because of society and my own self hatred that I felt the need to be THINNER.  NOW almost two years after I was my lowest weight, here I am frustrated and ready to get back at it again.

You know how many times I’ve restarted my weight loss over the last year?  Do you know how many times I wish I was where I was on May 2nd 2012? I just mentally yelled at myself to STOP BRINGING UP THE PAST!  Who CARES where I was back in 2012?  Since my weight loss journey I have become a more confident, stronger individual who now realize my weight dictates NOTHING!!!

I can be who I want to be RIGHT NOW!! As long as I have the passion and the determination to succeed – I will.

I’m not going to lie – I’m an emotional eater.  January 2013 my aunt passed away and then in July my Nan passed away.  I struggled so much when my Nan died.  Not that I didn’t (don’t) miss my Aunt… the passing of my Nan absolutely tore my heart out of my chest and devestated me.  I turned to food.  I was sad, I always cried and I pushed many of my friends and family away.

But everyone knows my story, everyone knows the struggles I’ve dealt with.  Everyone knows I’m once again overweight.

However, here’s the bright side – IM FINE WITH IT!! Well, not my weight per se, but.. I’m not going to let ANYTHING, ANYMORE dictate my success.  I’m not going to let certain individuals make me feel like crap anymore.

I am who I am.  I work hard, I believe in myself NOW and I’m ready to help others reach their weight loss goals WHILE working towards mine.  And I am no longer going to be worried that I’m being judged because I call myself a health coach.

I’m doing exactly what I want to do.  I’m running my own business.  I’m taking charge of my life.  I am, a health coach.

Stop mindless eating!

Let Go of the Trigger

Okay, go grab a notebook or use an online journal.  It’s time to start getting real about your emotional eating. Sure, it can be a vicious cycle if you allow it to progress, but I’m going to show you a quick little trick to help you understand your behaviors and break the destructive pattern. Let’s go.

Below are two questions. For a week, before you eat anything, whether it’s dinner or a small snack, I want you to answer these two questions in your journal. Sound easy? Well, you might be surprised. By doing this, you’ll be able to quickly tell if you’ve got real hunger or if your emotions are what’s causing you to reach for a bunch of junk you know you don’t need — or even really want.

Are you hungry?

Are you experiencing any physiological conditions that are signalling to you that you are hungry? Is your stomach growling? Do you feel weak or tired? Has it been longer than three or four hours since you last ate? If you concentrate on answering these questions, it will be very easy to determine whether you are genuinely, physically hungry or whether you are eating for a different reason. If you’ve determined that you are hungry, then it’s time to eat. If not, it’s time for the next question.

Are you depressed or anxious?

Did you just get into a fight? Are you anxious about a work-related deadline? Whatever it might be, write down what you’re feeling and why you think you’re feeling it. Getting in touch with your emotions here is critical. If you can’t, you’re going to have an incredibly difficult time reaching your weight loss goals. Dig deep, and get it in writing.

Switch it up!

Do More Than One Type of Cardio!

Do you do your cardio on the treadmill or the elliptical machine? How about trying a little of both? Does the thought scare you a bit? Most people like to stick to one machine for cardio, but I want you to change your mind-set. To reach your fitness goals, you have to let go of that all-or-nothing mentality. And let’s face it — eventually, you’ll need more than one cardio option. One day, the weather may not be cooperative for your usual outdoor jog, or all the ellipticals will be in use, or the pool will be closed, or your bike will be in the repair shop. Be flexible.

To get you thinking of the big picture, let’s take a look at all the options available in the always-popular walk-jog-run trio.

You can perform any of these activities on a treadmill or outdoors. The key is to mix it up and keep it challenging. To burn maximum calories, you have a few options: you can walk on an incline, walk fast, jog, or run, depending on what you’re ready for at your current fitness level.

Try performing intervals by running or jogging in quarter-mile bursts. You can also work different muscles in your legs by running backward every once in a while — obviously you can’t do this everywhere. You might also try sports drills like running sideways, or karaokes, in which you run sideways by crossing your right foot first in front of your left foot and then behind your left foot; you then switch directions, crossing the left foot in front and then behind the right foot.

Don’t Forget About Stairs

Stair-climbers and step-mills are a great cardio option. The key to getting the most out of this exercise is to take full steps. Make sure you let your bottom leg fully extend without touching the ground before stepping back up. Don’t lean on the machine or hold on to anything. If you need to set the speed lower in order to go hands-free, do it — you’re better off moving your upper body as you step. You can also perform this exercise sideways, and you can alternate your right leg over your left leg, and vice versa