Apple Nachos

Autumn is upon us and it’s my FAVOURITE time of the year.
I LOVE LOVE LOVE apple picking with my family.
I was browsing the internet to find some delicious snack recipes for my clients, and I found this one that I thought maybe you all would enjoy.

It’s a healthy spin on Nachos.  It’s perfect as well if you’re following a Paleo lifestyle.
Check it out below!
I’m definitely going to try it out.  I found this on the Paleo Grubs website.

nachos

Ingredients

• Apples
• Fresh lemon juice
• Almond butter
• Chocolate chips
• Unsweetened shredded coconut
• Sliced almonds

Instructions

1. Slice apples and toss with the lemon juice in a large bowl
2. Arrange the apples in a plate and drizzle with almond butter. You can use a pastry/piping bag or a ziploc bag to drizzle the almond butter.
3. Sprinkle with shredded coconut, chocolate chips and sliced almonds

Enjoy!! I know I will!

Danielle

Chicken Caesar Salad Pizza

Good morning readers!!  I found a new recipe I’m going to try! It sounds delicious!! Check it out! It’s from the Hungry Girl’s website!  I made some moderations to the recipe so the nutrition information will be a bit skewed, however when you prepare the pizza, you can easily track your calories.

Moderations:
-1oz real Shredded cheese instead of using a cheese string
-Regular dressing instead of calorie/light dressing
-Removed the “parm-style topping”

Ingredients:

1oz Shredded Cheese of your choice

1 high-fiber pita


2 oz. cooked and finely chopped skinless chicken breast

2 cups finely chopped romaine lettuce

2 tbsp. finely chopped red onion

1 tbsp. Caesar dressing

Directions:

 Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick spray.

Lay pita on the baking sheet, and sprinkle with shredded cheese and chicken. Bake until hot and lightly browned, 8 – 10 minutes.

Let pita cool, about 10 minutes. To make the salad, mix romaine and onion in a medium-large bowl. Toss with dressing.

Top pita with salad. Grab a fork and knife, and dig in!

Makes 1 serving

 
Entire recipe: 326 calories, 9g fat, 833mg sodium, 37g carbs, 8g fiber, 3.5g sugars, 30.5g protein

Read more: Chicken Caesar Salad Pizza http://caloriecount.about.com/chicken-caesar-salad-pizza-b630472#ixzz3AHgEkJmb

Baked Zucchini Boats

zucchini_boats2

Hosting a BBQ this weekend? Here is the perfect recipe to serve up! I am going to try it out for myself!  I found this recipe on “The Zucchini Diaries” website. ( http://thezucchinidiaries.blogspot.ca/ )


You’ll need:

4 large zucchinis, washed
About 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese, grated extra fine
About 2 tbsp of breadcrumbs 
8 cherry tomatoes, halved
Fresh chopped basil
Olive oil
Salt & Pepper
 
 Cooking Directions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Make about a 1/2 inch slice vertically down the side of each zucchini, then using a melon baller, scoop out the insides of the zucchini until you’ve created about a 1/4 inch trough. 
  3. Brush the zucchini inside and out with a little olive oil, then place 4 cherry tomato halves inside each zucchini boat, sprinkle with cheese, top with the breadcrumbs, and add a pinch of salt and pepper.
  4. Bake for roughly 25 minutes, or until the zucchini is tender.
  5. Top with fresh chopped basil.

Apple Oatmeal Recipe

In this healthy oatmeal recipe, cook apples into your morning oatmeal and you’ll start the day right with whole grains and a serving of fruit.

Apple Oatmeal Recipe

Makes: 4 servings, about 1 1/4 cups each

Active Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 crisp apples, divided
  • 1 cup steel-cut oats
  • 4 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons packed brown sugar, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt

PREPARATION

  1. Shred 2 apples using the large holes of a box grater, leaving the core behind.
  2. Heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add oats and cook, stirring, until lightly toasted, about 2 minutes. Add water and the shredded apples; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, chop the remaining 2 apples.
  4. After the oats have cooked for 10 minutes, stir in the chopped apples, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, cinnamon and salt; continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the apples are tender and the oatmeal is quite thick, 15 to 20 minutes more. Divide the oatmeal among 4 bowls. Top each portion with 2 tablespoons yogurt and 3/4 teaspoon brown sugar.

TIPS & NOTES

  • Shopping Tip: Choose unbruised, firm apples with smooth skin. Store for up to 4 months in the refrigerator.

NUTRITION

Per serving: 207 calories; 1 g fat (0 g sat, 1 g mono); 0 mg cholesterol; 46 g carbohydrates; 10 g added sugars; 5 g protein; 4 g fiber; 166 mg sodium; 234 mg potassium.

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

Drink coffee?

 

Do you love caffeine as much as I do?  I must admit, I not only love coffee…I Love Energy drinks.  I KNOW!!! They are horrible for you.  I try to cover my tracks and ensure I drink the sugar free kind.  However, I know that no energy drinks are good for you.  ANYWHOO… I’m not talking about me..

So.. lets start off with the good things about caffeine.  I’ll give all of you coffee drinkers good news!!!  Caffeine in moderation IS a good thing.  Caffeine improves cognitive functions (What do I mean by that? Cognition is a group of mental processes that includes attention, memory, producing and understanding language, learning, reasoning, problem solving, and decision making.) Anywhoo… Caffeine also inhibits insulin resistance AND….some wonderful news.. it also speeds up your metabolism!! WAHOOO!!

However, you have to make sure you do not drink too much!! Too much caffeine can actually make us gain weight by burning out our adrenal glands and releasing stress hormones. For this reason, 400 milligrams (mg) a day should be the limit. (That’s the equivalent of one to two large cups of coffee, depending on how strongly it’s brewed.)  SO if you’re looking to watch your weight.. I would recommend not over doing it with the coffee.

Some sources of caffeine are better than others. Organic, filtered coffee (not doctored up with sugar, artificial sweeteners, or cream) is okay. Green tea is a better choice because it promotes fat oxidation and is believed to improve insulin sensitivity. Limit your intake of caffeinated beverages to one or two a day — and because caffeine is a diuretic, you should drink one glass of water for every caffeinated drink. Also, you should have your last caffeinated drink before noon so that it doesn’t interfere with your sleep.

So, are you drinking coffee just for the benefit of it’s fat-burning benefits?  I would highly recommend looking into Guarana.  What is that?  Well because of my experience with a certain weight loss company.. I know different products that assist with weight loss.  I always have friends and family asking me different things they can do/take to help with their weight loss journeys.  So what I do is research online about difference OTC products that they can purchase…

So…lets take a little look into Guarana.  First of all, you can ingest this product in pill form OR in a drink.. Guarana is a tropical plant native to the Amazon jungle. It contains caffeine, but instead of producing a sudden energy surge and quick drop-off, guarana is absorbed slowly and therefore produces a more moderate energy boost that escalates gradually. Try 5 mg of guarana per pound of body weight, and take it about 40 minutes before your workout.

So today, before you hit a Starbucks or Tim Hortons… remember don’t over-do it… It may just make you gain back the weight you’ve lost.

Have a wonderful Sunday. 🙂

-Danielle

Recipe: Banana Split Bites

 

Summer is coming and these would be the perfect, most delicious recipe for you to take to a BBQ/Party!!!

Banana Split Bites, I can’t wait to make these!! Check out the recipe below and ENJOY!!!

Image

Ingredients:

1 medium banana, sliced into 16 coins

2 oz. (about 1/4 cup) fat-free strawberry Greek yogurt (like the kind by Chobani)

2 tsp. finely chopped peanuts
Directions:

Lay banana coins on a large plate or platter. Evenly top with yogurt, followed by peanuts.

Freeze until yogurt is firm, about 1 hour. Eat up!

Makes 1 serving

Entire recipe: 182 calories, 3g fat, 37mg sodium, 34.5g carbs, 3.5g fiber, 20.5g sugars, 7.5g protein

 

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.