POTATOES WITH PEPPERS AND ONIONS

Potato Pepper & onions (2)
4 Red Potatoes, Quartered
1/2# Mini Sweet Peppers (yellow, orange and red)
1/2 Red Onion, sliced and quartered
3 Celery Stalks, coarsely chopped
1/4 c Italian, Balsamic or Greek Salad Dressing (use “lite” if desired)
sea salt
fresh ground black pepper

Preheat oven at 350 degrees F.  Coat a 13″ X 9″ baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.  Add potatoes, peppers and onion. Drizzle salad dressing on top and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper.  Bake 40 to 50 minutes until the onion is carmelized. potatoes are soft and veggies are tender crisp with some blackened areas.

SERVE AS A VEGETARIAN MEAL WITH A LITTLE SHREDDED ITALIAN STYLE CHEESE ON TOP OR AS A SIDE DISH WITH BEEF, PORK OR POULTRY.  IT WOULD ALSO BE GREAT WITH SOME HOT TURKEY SAUSAGE!

I SERVED IT WITH A HAM I GOT AS A DEAL TO HAVE WITH COMPANY AND I ALWAYS SERVE A BIG FRESH SALAD WITH MY MEAL.

THIS DISH IS ALSO GLUTEN FREE!  ENJOY!!

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MEXICAN TUNA MELT ON CIABATTA – JUST IN TIME FOR LENT

mexican Tuna Melt 007 (570x428) (3)
3 (5oz) cans chunk light tuna drained
1 (15 oz) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 c sunflower kernels
1/2 c finely chopped red onion
1 tsp lime juice
1 hot pepper finely chopped and seeded (I’ve used Anaheim and Poblano)
1/4 c mayonnaise (I mixed in a little plain yogurt to cut the fat)
1 c shredded pepper jack cheese

Fold together. Serve toasted on half a Ciabatta Roll or Whole Grain Roll with sliced tomato and a big salad!

GOOD FOR ASH WEDNESDAY AND ALL THE FRIDAYS IN LENT – FEEL LIKE YOU’RE EATING OUT AT A FANCY RESTAURANT!

SERVE WITH A BIG DILL PICKLE AND ENJOY!

SPICED CHICKEN AND BEAN SALAD

SPICED CHICKEN AND BEAN SALAD

2 Tbsp oil
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 # chicken breasts/tenders
1 c frozen green beans
1 c frozen wax beans (if you can find them – what happened to these?)
1 c frozen lima beans
1 avocado, halved, seeded, peeled, sliced
3 oz crumbled blue cheese
Ranch dressing

Combine oil and spices. Coat Chicken and grill 10-15 minutes. Meanwhile, combine beans in microwave dish. Microwave until heated through. Prepare avocado. Cut up chicken and serve over salad with ranch dressing.

I ADDED BLACK BEANS TO THE SALAD AND GRILLED SOME HOMEMADE SWEET POTATO FRIES (USED THE SAME OIL AND SPICES) WITH THE CHICKEN! JUST DELICIOUS!

QUICK AND EASY FOR A WINTER COOK OUT! LOTS OF COLORS MEANS LOTS OF ANTIOXIDANTS AND CANCER FIGHTING.  YOU CAN USE A LOW FAT RANCH DRESSING BUT I PREFER TO USE LESS OF THE REAL STUFF!

“IF MD STANDS FOR MENTALLY DEFICIENT, RD MUST STAND FOR REALLY DUMB!”

What Prompted This Post?

I was on an elevator with a doctor (not an intern) in one of the hospitals I worked in (I won’t mention the name), and he looked at my badge and asked me what the RD stood for!  While shocked, somehow I came up with this witty reply: “If MD stands for Mentally Deficient, then RD must stand for Really Dumb!”  Thankfully, the elevator doors opened for my timely escape.  Needless to say, I did NOT stay at that hospital for long!

What Is a Registered Dietitian?

RD

Registered dietitians, or RDs, are THE food and nutrition experts, translating the science of nutrition into practical solutions for healthy living. The expertise, training and credentials that back a registered dietitian are vital for promoting positive lifestyle choices.

When you need food and nutrition information based on fact or need to know how a healthy diet improves health and fights disease—rely on qualified professionals in the field.

Registered dietitians draw on their experience to develop a personalized nutrition plan for individuals of all ages. They are able to separate facts from fads and translate nutritional science into information you can use. A registered dietitian can put you on the path to a healthy weight, eating healthfully and reducing your risk of chronic disease.

RDs work in hospitals, schools, public health clinics, nursing homes, fitness centers, food industry, research, private practice and more. Many RDs have certifications in specialized fields such as diabetes, sports, pediatric, renal, oncology or gerontological nutrition.

RD4

An RD can provide sound, easy-to-follow nutrition advice. Here are a few of the benefits of working with an expert.

  • Between what you hear on TV and read in the news, eating right can seem like a real challenge. But it doesn’t have to be. A registered dietitian can help you weed through nutrition misinformation and provide sound, easy-to-follow nutrition advice.
  • Maintaining a healthy blood sugar level is essential to managing diabetes, and choosing nutritious foods and monitoring portion sizes help keep blood sugar levels as stable as possible. If you have diabetes, a registered dietitian (RD) or registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) can help manage the disease while ensuring you get the nutrients you need.  A CDE (Certified Diabetes Educator) can also be an RD with specialized training.
  • Individuals with kidney disease likely need to follow a diet with specific daily amounts of certain nutrients to help prevent progression of the disease. A registered dietitian nutritionist can teach patients how to eat well and manage this vital part of their health plan.
  • WEIGHT CONTROL is always a huge concern.  No powdered meal replacement or pill is going to help you control your weight effectively.  A registered dietitian will work with you one-on-one to look at your current diet and fitness routine and help you develop a personalized plan that will work for you!
  • Dietitian’s can help with sound nutrition advice through all stages of life:  Pregnancy & Lactation; Breastfeeding, Picky Toddler & Food Jags,  Teen Athlete Needs, Nutrition  as we Age, Geriatric Nutrition and Palliative Nutrition.

Some RDs may call themselves “nutritionists,” but not all nutritionists are registered dietitians. The RD credential can only be used by practitioners who have met specific educational and professional requirements.

RD1

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (previously the American Dietetic Association) recently changed the credential to Registered Dietitian-Nutritionist (RDN).  So when looking for sound nutrition advice, whether from a “Dietitian” or “Nutritionist”, always make sure to look at their credentials.  If they are Registered with the Commission on Dietetic Registration in the US,then they can call themselves an RD or RDN.  They will have a card to prove it!

RD3

What Are My Credentials?

I HAVE BEEN A REGISTERED DIETITIAN FOR OVER 25 YEARS – NOW, I GUESS, I AM A REGISTERED DIETITIAN-NUTRITIONIST IN THE USA!  I AM ALSO A CERTIFIED DIETITIAN-NUTRITIONIST WITH THE NEW YORK STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENT.  THIS IS WHAT OTHER STATES MIGHT CALL A LICENSE TO PRACTICE AS A DIETITIAN-NUTRITIONIST IN NYS.  I WAS ALSO A CERTIFIED DIABETES EDUCATOR FOR 10 YEARS.

RD2

I HOPE YOU FIND MY BLOG USEFUL AND INFORMATIVE!

Adapted from the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics web page.

SNOW STORM SOUP

IN THE MIDDLE OF A SNOW STORM IN BUFFALO, NY THERE IS NOTHING BETTER THAN MAKING SOME VEGETARIAN BLACK BEAN SOUP!

black bean soup 1

I MAKE THIS IN THE CROCK POT SO JUST THROW EVERYTHING IN!

1 small onion, diced
1 tsp garlic
1/2 c frozen corn
2 c vegetable broth
1 c hot salsa
1 (15oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tbsp cumin
dash of lime juice

cheddar cheese and tortilla chips (OPTIONAL)

Place first 6 ingredients in crock pot and cook on LOW setting 4-5 hours. Add spices and lime juice in the last hour of cooking.

Serve with cheddar cheese and tortilla chips on top!

4 servings

PROVIDES NEARLY 45% OF YOUR DAILY PROTEIN NEEDS AND MINIMAL FAT. (TO ELIMINATE MORE FAT FORGO THE CHEESE AND CHIPS.)

THIS IS WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE THIS MORNING IN LAKE VIEW, NY!

HEAT UP IN A SNOW STORM WITH THIS SPICY HOT SOUP! 

**Personally, I would double the recipe because I want more than 4 servings of this – clears the sinuses too!!

SECRET MEATBALL RECIPE

MEATBALLS

MUST TRY!  ONE OF THE WAYS I’M FIGHTING HIGH CHOLESTEROL!  Here is my really great recipe for super protein, low fat meatballs (I also make into burgers to cook on the grill)!

1# 96% lean ground beef
1 (15oz) can lentil beans – drained just a bit
1 envelope onion soup mix (I use Lipton or Great Value)
1 tsp instant beef bouillon and seasoning (herb ox)
2-3 Tbsp minced garlic cloves
1/2 cup quinoa prepared according to directions
3 eggs (or egg substitute equivalent to 3 eggs)
1 tsp Italian seasoning

Mix all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and let sit in refrigerator for about an hour (the quinoa will absorb extra liquid and make for more solid burgers and meatballs that hold together).  Fashion into 2 good sized burgers (to freeze for later grilling) and 20 large meatballs.

Bake meatballs at 375 degrees 20-25 minutes until browned and firm.  I usually freeze and add to my homemade sauce as needed!

**Sometimes I add a tsp of cumin or chili powder to spice them up, or if I’m thinking of beef stroganoff with Swedish meatballs, I add a tsp of ground all spice!

ENJOY AND BE HEALTHY!

HOLIDAY ROUNDS WITHOUT GAINING THE POUNDS!

Healthy Holiday Eating

Food is everywhere during the holiday season, making it tough to stick to your healthful eating and exercise habits. However, with a little attention, you can make it through the holidays without losing track of your healthy lifestyle.

Is it true that the average person gains 5 pounds between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day?
People often do gain weight during the holidays, but how much weight? In 2000, a study of 195 adults showed an average holiday weight gain of between .75 pounds (lb) and 1 lb. However, 14% of those studied gained 5 lb or more. In this study, those who were overweight or obese gained more holiday pounds than those who were normal weight. According to the study, while most people gain less than 1 lb during the holidays, the holiday weight gain is one reason that your weight creeps up from year to year.

Woman Standing on Scale

What can I do to prevent gaining weight over the holidays?
Are you dreading the holiday season because you think you will gain back all of the weight you have lost in the last 6 months? The best advice is to change your mind-set. Do not expect to lose weight between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. Instead, focus on not gaining weight. For success, keep a regular exercise pattern and healthy diet during this time. After all, the fine food of the holiday is one of the pleasures of the season.

Allow yourself to splurge on foods that make your holiday season meaningful. Enjoy your favorites in small amounts. Try to cut back in other ways, and keep your exercise schedule on track.

What can I do to stay active when I am traveling and cannot get to my gym?
Exercising during the hectic and sometimes stressful holiday season can help you maintain your weight and sanity. If you are a true “gym rat,” most gyms will allow you to visit as a guest, although sometimes at a hefty fee! Walking, running, or stair-climbing are easy when you are traveling—you can do these activities almost anywhere. For resistance training, check your sporting goods store or online for rubber resistance bands (They are only about $10 and work really well.  I also posted several tips for quick work outs you can do anywhere – look for them!). They slip easily into a travel bag and are lightweight—use them to strengthen and tone almost any body part.

Danskin Toning Band (2) (570x428)

You may need to adjust your expectations for holiday exercising. Try to stay flexible. Know that you might miss out on some workouts. Sneak in exercise whenever you can by taking a walk after a large meal, for example. Make sure to get back to your regular exercise routine when you return home.

How can I stay on track and not overeat at holiday functions?
You can keep your calorie intake under control in many ways. Try these tips and see which ones work best for you:

  • Survey the entire table before you take any food. Decide what foods are worth eating and which you can ignore, and then stick to that decision. Why waste calories on foods that do not bring you pleasure?
  • Eat a snack before you leave home. If you arrive at a party starving, you are more likely to eat too much.
  • Eat your calories instead of drinking them. Stick to lower calorie or calorie-free drinks (diet sodas, water, lite beer, or a wine spritzer), instead of punches, eggnog, and mixed drinks that can have up to 500 calories/cup.
  • Sip a large glass of water between every alcoholic drink, nonalcoholic punch, or eggnog. This will help keep you hydrated, and you will drink fewer calories by the end of the night.

Woman Drinking Glass of Water

  • When you are hosting, make sure the menu includes lower-calorie foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and lean meats. When you are a guest, bring along a lower-calorie dish to share.
grinch kabobs

GRINCH KABOBS

GRINCH KABOBS:

Layer mini marshmallow, strawberry, banana slice, and a grape on a small stick and you get Grinch Kabobs!

  • Try not to hang out near the food. Find a comfortable spot across the room, and focus on people instead of eating.
  • Watch your portion sizes. Do not cover your plate completely with food. When it comes to holiday sweets and alcoholic beverages, less is better.
  • Drop out of the “clean plate club.” Leave a few bites behind every time you eat, especially if you are eating something you do not really care for.
  • Enjoy your favorite holiday treats, but take a small portion, eat slowly, and savor the taste and texture of the wonderful foods of the season.
  • Visit these Web sites for free reduced-calorie and reduced-fat recipes:

12 QUICK HOLIDAY NUTRITION TIPS!

CELEBRATE THE HOLIDAYS A LITTLE HEALTHIER AND AVOID THE UP TO 15 POUND WEIGHT GAIN!

  • Focus on weight management rather than weight loss.

Standing on Scale

  • Plan time for exercise. Exercise helps relieve holiday stress and prevent weight gain.

FLAT ABS 5

  • Do not skip meals. Skipping breakfast or lunch before a big holiday dinner actually may cause you to overeat.
  • If you know that you will not find any healthy choices, offer to bring something along, such as a salad, vegetable dish, chicken, or fish.

Fresh vegetables falling

  • Pace yourself and become more aware of what you are eating and drinking. Eat until you are satisfied, not stuffed.
  • Select small portions. This will allow you to enjoy all the different foods offered, while still controlling your calorie intake.
  • If you drink, select lite wines and beers, rather than mixed drinks. Alcohol is high in calories.  Use diet mixers if available.
  • Stand away from buffet tables and food trays to avoid the urge to nibble constantly. My husband’s problem!
  • Talk more, eat less. Make the holiday season about enjoying company, rather than all about the food.
  • Fill your plate with a rainbow of colors. Choose different varieties of fruits and vegetables often.

vegetables

  • Learn to say “no” politely. You can say: “No thank you. I have had enough. Everything was delicious.” This works even with someone who will not take “no” for an answer.
  • If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again!

THE BATTLE OVER FLUORIDE

I HAD NO IDEA THERE WAS ANY CONTROVERSY OVER FLUORIDATING THE WATER!  IT’S BEEN GOING ON FOR YEARS AND I’VE BEEN OBLIVIOUS!

fluoride effects 3

Environmental health groups are looking to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to impose tougher standards on fluoride in drinking water, building on a decision Friday by the federal Department of Health and Human Services to lower the recommended level for the first time in nearly 50 years.

The HHS move came in the wake of a government study showing that about 2 out of 5 adolescents have tooth streaking or spottiness because of excessive fluoride. In extreme cases, teeth can become pitted.  (side note from friendsofwater: this totally contradicts claims from the initial studies saying this would be a rare problem.  Gee, maybe some of the other claims may not be true too!  Do YOU think damaging the teeth of 40% of our youth is okay?) 

fluoride effects

The dangers may go beyond cosmetic issues. The EPA released two new reviews of research on fluoride Friday. One study found that prolonged, high intake of fluoride can increase the risk of brittle bones, fractures and crippling bone abnormalities.  (another side note:  this has actually been well understood for decades.  fluoride has a negative effect on calcium bonding – this is not news.)

fluoride effects 2


It is our impression that the tide is just beginning to turn on the question of fluoridation in the water.  Time Magazine included fluoride on a list of “The Hazards Lurking at Home.”  As they point out, fluoride is “neurotoxic and potentially tumorigenic if swallowed; the American Dental Association advises that children under 2 not use fluoride toothpaste.”  Of course that is far from the whole story, but it does seem that awareness of the serious risks of fluoridated water has built considerably. 

fluoride effects 1

But it may be some time yet before most municipalities remove fluoride from your water supply.  This issue has been fought for decades now, and the those who do not want to remove fluoride still have the upper hand.  There have even been a couple of US cities that recently started to add fluoride, although others recently dropped it.

fluoride effects 4

WHAT A DENTIST SAYS ABOUT WATER FILTRATION SYSTEMS: FLUORIDE IS GOOD FOR YOUR TEETH!!! I am a dentist and am disgusted you are trying to market the removal of fluoride being a good thing. Fluoride is added to water supplies for a reason. You need to find a more ethical marketing ploy! When I was searching for a water filtration system to buy, I looked for those that removed as little fluoride as possible (and recommend the same for my patients).”

FLUORIDE

OTHER SOURCES OF FLUORIDE: found not only in the water supply but fluoride is found in produce, in most foods now that have water in them, and in toothpaste. There is lots of fluoride in canned foods, like soup for example. There is a lot in soda cans.

WHAT DO YOU THINK?  FLUORIDE IN THE WATER:  GOOD OR BAD?

PILATES, YOGA AND TAI CHI WORKOUT

PILATES, YOGA AND TAI CHI WORKOUT

PYT WORKOUT

This combo of yoga, Pilates, and tai chi exercises will get you strong, sculpted, and totally revitalized — plus give you an invigorating energy boost!

Yoga, Pilates, and Tai Chi Elements

Sometimes the quietest exercises can be the most invigorating. That’s the case with this energy-boosting routine, which brings together elements of yoga, pilates, and tai chi.

Yoga is about stability, Pilates focuses on mobility and stability, and tai chi is all about mobility.  Moving from one discipline to the next circulates the energy throughout your body, so you’re refreshed by the end.  You’ll also feel pretty darn strong — these moves are a killer way to sculpt your arms, abs, legs, and butt, using just your body weight for resistance.

Do each circuit three times through, breathing deeply and evenly throughout the workout.

Circuit 1

1. Camel

PYT WORKOUT 1

Strengthens: Shoulders; stretches Front of Body

  • Kneel on floor with feet behind you, legs slightly apart.
  • Stretch your hips and thighs forward while reaching back, placing your hands on your lower back (easier) or heels (more challenging).
  • Gaze up toward ceiling while pushing your hips forward and arching spine; hold for 7 to 10 breaths.

2. Thigh Stretch

PYT WORKOUT 2

Strengthens: Glutes, Core; stretches quads

  • Release from Camel and return to start.
  • Inhale, then exhale while leaning back from hips, this time without bending spine, so your body forms a straight line from ears to knees.
  • Place hands on hips (easier) or extend arms in front at shoulder height (more challenging).
  • Come back to start, then repeat. Do 7 to 10 reps.

3. Rising Lunge

PYT WORKOUT 3

Strengthens: Legs, Glutes, Hips; stretches Back

  • From thigh stretch, bring left foot in front of you, left knee bent 90 degrees.
  • Lift right knee off the floor, straightening leg behind you.
  • Sweep arms out as you rise; then lower arms as you sink back down.
  • Do 4 reps; switch sides and repeat.

Circuit 2

1. Tree Pose

PYT WORKOUT 4

Strengthens: quads, glutes, Hamstrings; Improves Balance

  • Stand with feet together, palms together in front of chest.
  • Place sole of right foot on left inner thigh, as high as you are able; turn right knee out to side.
  • Keep hands in front (easier) or extend arms overhead, keeping palms together (more challenging).
  • Bend left knee slightly to work quads.
  • Hold for 7 to 10 breaths.
  • Go directly to Single leg Circle.

2. Single Leg Circle

PYT WORKOUT 5

Strengthens: Glutes, hamstrings, Inner Thighs; Improves Balance

  • Remaining on left leg from tree pose, straighten right leg and bring it out in front of you, toes pointed toward floor.
  • Drawing abs in, make 1 large circle clockwise with your right foot, keeping hips still; exhale 1 full breath to draw the circle.
  • Keep hands on hips (easier) or arms extended overhead (more challenging).
  • Reverse direction, drawing a counterclockwise circle.
  • Do 7 to 10 reps per direction.
  • Go directly to Rooster Stands on One Leg.

3. Rooster Stands on One Leg

PYT WORKOUT 6

Strengthens: Glutes, Quads, Hamstrings, Shoulders; Stretches Back

  • Remaining on left leg, bring right leg in front of body, knee bent 90 degrees and thigh parallel to floor.
  • Slowly bend left knee in a half squat, keeping weight over heel.
  • As you squat down, bring arms down in front, then out to sides and back above head as you straighten leg.
  • To make it easier, don’t squat down as deeply and keep your right foot closer to floor.
  • Do 7 to 10 reps.
  • Repeat the entire series, starting from Tree Pose, on opposite leg.

Circuit 3

1. Warrior 1

PYT WORKOUT 7

Strengthens: Legs, glutes, Core; stretches Back

  • Stand with feet 3 to 4 feet apart.
  • Turn left foot out 90 degrees, pointing to left side, and pivot right foot toward left.
  • Bend left knee 90 degrees, knee aligned with ankle; turn hips to face over left thigh.
  • Place hands on hips (easier) or raise both arms overhead, palms facing each other (more challenging).
  • Hold for 7 to 10 breaths. Go directly to Tuck and Extend.

2. Tuck and Extend

PYT WORKOUT 8

Strengthens: Arms, chest, Glutes; Stretches Hips

  • From Warrior 1, sweep arms down to touch floor on either side of left foot.
  • Step both feet back behind you.
  • Inhale, then exhale as you lift right foot off the floor and sweep knee under body (not shown).
  • Straighten right leg behind you, lifting it as high as you can, then bring knee back toward nose.
  • To make it easier, bring right knee to floor before straightening leg.
  • Do 7 to 10 reps; go directly to Slow Kick.

3. Slow Kick

PYT WORKOUT 9

Strengthens: Glutes, Chest, Shoulders; Stretches hamstrings

  • Lower right foot and walk hands back, rolling up to standing position.
  • Lift right leg, knee bent 90 degrees; bend elbows 45 degrees, palms down (not shown).
  • Slowly kick forward with right foot, leading with the heel; at the same time, slowly push palms forward.
  • Lower and repeat.
  • Do 7 to 10 reps.
  • To make it easier, keep standing leg slightly bent and hands on hips.
  • Repeat entire series on opposite leg.

ENJOY FEELING FIT AND STRONG!