Tag: Healthy Snacks
Good for you food with wholesome ingredients in 30 minutes.
These muffins use fresh, simple ingredients and pack a huge nutritional punch. They are high in protein, and contain a hearty blend of grains, fiber and healthy fats (from flax and nuts). Bake ahead for a terrific on-the-go weekday breakfast or anytime healthy snack that provides lasting energy and satisfies. Now you’re baking!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease muffin tins with non-stick spray (or coconut oil). In large mixing bowl, combine dry ingredients:
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup oats
- 2 scoops vanilla protein powder,
- 4 Tbsp Ground FlaxSeed
- ½ cup chopped Pecans (or walnuts)
- 1-2 Tbsp cinnamon
- 1Tbsp baking powder
- ½ tbsp baking soda
- 4-5 packets of Truvia, or ~1-2 Tbsp Splenda brown sugar blend
In separate bowl combine wet ingredients:
- 1 whole egg and 2 egg whites
- ½ cup unsweetened applesauce (or diced up fresh apple)
- 1 Tbsp Flax seed oil
- ~ ½ – ¾ cup of Almond or Coconut milk (or lowfat milk)
- Honey (to taste)
Combine wet with dry ingredients. Don’t over mix. Fold in 1-1/2 cups of fresh or frozen blueberries and spoon into muffin tins.
Bake for 15-19 minutes or until center is cooked (toothpick comes out clean). 12 muffins.
Healthy eating doesn’t really take any more time than unhealthy eating; it just requires a little more foresight.
Everybody has a story about when or why they gained weight, or why they have no time to eat right. When you’re constantly on the go, it can be hard to find time to eat, let alone eat healthy. So you turn to quick-fix foods that are high in fat, sugar, sodium, or calories, and low in essential nutrients. But eating is what gives us the energy to do everything on our to-do list. And when we are busy and “forget” to eat, or hurriedly rush into the nearest convenience store or hit up a vending machine for chips and a coke, we are not fueling bodies. So how do you find balance?
The solution isn’t to find more time, but to work with the schedule you do have. Instead of waiting in the fast food drive in line, use this time to visit the grocery store, and pick up prepared salads, sandwiches, and meats, pre-washed and cut fruits and vegetables, canned soups, low-calorie and low-fat frozen meals, yogurt, string cheese, and cereals.
To lose weight, and keep it off you must eliminate foods that aren’t healthy and eat foods that are good for your body. There is a strong correlation between how and what we eat and being well. People hold on to the illusion that there is no time to cook, no time to shop, and no healthy options for “fast food” meals. But just because there is no time to always sit down and eat, does not mean you have to eat poorly. What it boils down to is being prepared and carrying healthy snacks with you.
Here are some healthy tips to try:
- Cook a bigger batch of food on the weekends, and refrigerate or freeze for weekday lunches or dinners.
- Set an alarm for mealtimes. Even if you’re buried in work, don’t skip meals; designate a time to eat.
- Try not to do anything else while eating. Mindless consumption prevents the enjoyment of food. When that happens, people tend to eat more and eat unhealthy alternatives.
- Put fresh or dried fruit where you can see it to remind yourself of your goal to eat healthy. Bananas, grapes, and apples make handy and nutritious snack items.
- If at a restaurant, turn down the supersize option, and choose baked and broiled instead of fried.
- Order the lunch portion at dinnertime, and hold off on fatty condiments.
- Keep handy snacks around, such as fruits, dried fruits, nuts, seeds, trail mix, yogurt, cottage cheese, carrot or celery sticks, low sugar cereals, and wraps
Eggs are by far the fastest cooking protein you can get. Scrambling 2-3 eggs takes about 2 minutes. Sauté some spinach with a little garlic, or add some diced ham and cheese, and you have a healthy homemade meal in less than 10 minutes. This works for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Hard boil eggs take about 10 minutes. Boil extra, peel and place in Ziplocs and carry
with you for a quick protein snack or for breakfast on the run the next day.
Fresh fruit protein smoothies are also quick, nutritious and satisfying. They are so versatile… almost anything goes. And they travel well. 1 scoop of Whey adds approximately 25-30grms of muscle building protein for satiability. I recommend buying one of the many personal blenders on the market like the Ninja or Magic Bullet. Mix and go, in under 2 minutes.
Planning healthy meals and snacks ahead of time is especially crucial for people with junk food cravings. If you must have junk food, give the healthier alternatives, such as baked chips, dried fruit, or sugar-free Popsicles a try. Look for low-calorie, low-sugar, and low-fat options.
In place of chips, try light popcorn, whole grain crackers, carrot sticks, red peppers, and rice cakes.
For the sweet tooth, sugar-free pudding, sugar-free Jell-O, fruit bars, baked apple, fresh fruits, and dried fruits are options.
If you put your mind to it, you can come up with your own ideas for eating well with little cooking. It’s just a matter of wanting to find solutions.
Eat more Orange if you want to Live Longer… and I don’t mean Cheese Puffs.
Have you ever noticed that people with poor diets, eat foods that are mostly beige in color? Breads, pasta, french fries… If you are trying to improve your diet, adding color is where it’s at. Orange pigment in foods, for one, provides a significant nutritional kick and should be incorporated daily into your meal plans. Some of the healthiest foods to be found are sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkin and other squash, mango, papaya, apricots, cantaloupe and oranges/tangerines.
These foods are usually colored by natural plant pigments called “carotenoids.” Beta-carotene in sweet potatoes, pumpkins and carrots is converted to vitamin A, which helps maintain
healthy mucous membranes and healthy eyes. Scientists consistently report that carotenoid-rich foods can help reduce risk of cancer, heart disease and improve immune system function. Recent studies have also shown that people who have large quantities of the antioxidant alpha-carotene in their blood (found chiefly in pumpkins and carrots) have a 61% lower risk of disease-related death. And carotenoid consumption protects against the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts. Citrus fruits like oranges are not rich in carotenoids; however they are an excellent source of vitamin C and folate, a B vitamin that helps reduce risk of birth defects.
Sweet potatoes are one of the best orange foods. They contain huge amounts of beta-carotene, manganese, copper, fiber, B-6, potassium, iron…. that’s a lot of nutritional power packed into a small potato case!
Adding more orange to your diet is easy. The produce department carries a variety of orange foods year round. Fruits like pumpkin are not just for Halloween. Like the sweet potato, pumpkin is one of the most nutritionally dense foods you can get and is inexpensive and convenient in its canned form. High in fiber and low in calories, pumpkin is simple to incorporate into recipes, like muffins, pancakes, and breads.
Incorporating orange fruits and vegetables everyday is not difficult to do and will improve your overall health while keeping illness and disease at bay.
EASY ORANGE ADD-INS:
ü Sliced orange peppers to a sandwich or wrap
ü Baby carrots to a salad
ü Apricots with mixed nuts for a healthy snack mix.
ü Fresh Orange, Peach, and/or Mango, Vanilla protein and almond/soy milk for a delicious “Orange Dream” Smoothie.
ü Thinly slice or dice sweet potatoes, lightly toss in olive oil, and roast in 375 oven for a simple side dish.
Cut up cantaloupe, mix with cottage cheese or yogurt for breakfast, or snack.
On your next trip to the grocery, be sure to fill you cart with plenty of color; and don’t neglect the ORANGE.
The Secret Super-food Ingredient is: P U M P K I N!
You will not believe how easy these are. AND Only 2 ingredients! This is an approved weight watchers recipe that delivers a healthy cake like muffin that promises to satisfy those wicked chocolate cravings.
Do not add oil or eggs as directed on the cake mix box, even though you might be tempted! I confess I
added 1 heaping tablespoon of non-fat plain Greek yogurt to mine and they turned out incredibly moist… but even that isn’t necessary. If you feel you must add a bit more liquid and don’t have yogurt, 1/4c water would work fine.
- 1 box REDUCED SUGAR Devils Food Cake Mix (Pillsbury)
- 1 Can Pumpkin
THAT’s ALL! Mix together well. Mixture will be very thick. Spoon into muffin tins sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.
Bake at 375 degrees for approx 20-25 minutes. – or until toothpick comes out clean. Makes 12-18 muffins.
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
PUMPKIN IS A NUTRITIONAL POWERHOUSE
PUT MORE PUMPKIN INTO YOUR DIET!
This bread is packed with many health boosting, anti-aging and disease fighting nutrients.
This hearty bread makes for a healthy and satisfying breakfast or mid day snack that is high in protein and complex carbohydrates. The flax and walnuts provide heart healthy fats. The pumpkin and oats both contribute to making this bread both high in fiber but low in sugar. Pumpkin also contains powerful antioxidants, vitamins and minerals making it one of the most nutrient rich foods available…so much so that pumpkin is considered by many nutritionists as one of the top “SUPERFOODS”.
- 1 ½ c Low carb baking flour
- 1 c. oats
- 4 scoops ViSalus Vi-Shape Nutrition Mix (or 2 scoops Vanilla protein)
- 2 TBSP Flax Seed
- 1 Tbsp ground Cinnamon
- 1Tbsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
- 1 tsp Baking soda/ ½ tsp baking powder
- 2 cups canned pumpkin
- 1/2 c unsweetened applesauce (or more)
- 1 whole, 2 egg whites, beaten
- ~½ cup vanilla almond milk
- 1 Tbsp Flax oil
- 3-4 Tbsp Splenda brown sugar blend (more or less to taste)
- 1 Tbsp honey
Optional: 1/2c walnut pieces
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray one regular size (or 4 mini) loaf pan with non-stick spray.
Combine all dry ingredients in large bowl. Gradually add wet ingredients to dry and stir well. Stir in walnut pieces. Pour batter into pan and place on center rack in oven. Bake for approximately 60 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool before removing from pan.
Spread sliced bread with apple or pumpkin butter if desired!
Any recipe can be made healthier with just a few modifications… and there is no need to sacrifice flavor.
Your ViSalus Shape-mix is not just for smoothies! Add a couple of scoops to your favorite baked recipes, and you are not only adding that amazing sweet cream flavor but will also be getting extra protein and nutrients from the mix. And by using wholesome oats and flax seed in place of refined flour; and applesauce and yogurt in place of butter or oil, you are
adding wholesome ingredients without the additional calories, sugar or saturated fats.
Flax seeds and flax seed oils are rich in heart healthy Omega 3 fatty acids, proven to help lower (bad) cholesterol as well as provide a myriad of other documented health benefits. So do not overlook using these ingredients when baking. Using extra ripe bananas will add natural sweetness to the muffins.
Dry ingredients: Mix together in large bowl.
- 1c Low carb baking flour
- 1c oats
- 2 rounded scoops of Vi-Shape mix (or other protein powder)
- 1 ½ Tbsp milled flax seed
- ~2 Tbsp Splenda brown sugar
- Baking powder/ Baking Soda
- 1 Tbsp (or more to taste) ground Cinnamon
In separate bowl or large measuring cup, mix moist ingredients:
- 2 ripe bananas, mashed.
- 1 whole egg + 1 egg white
- 2 Tbsp unsweetened applesauce
- 1/2container low fat banana (or vanilla) yogurt
- 1 Tbsp Flax seed oil.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray muffin tins with no stick butter flavored spray. Add the wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Be sure to mix well to blend all flavors.
Spoon into muffin tins and bake for 12-15 minutes until lightly browned and toothpick comes out clean.
Recipe makes 1 dozen muffins.
Change it up by using blueberries, raspberries, peaches, strawberries, etc. for bananas. Swap out yogurt flavors to compliment fruit.
Fries dipped in ketchup … potato salad drenched in mayonnaise … and ribs smothered with barbecue sauce … You love it; your waistline, not so much.
Maybe it’s time to downsize.
Dressings, dips, and sauces can be a big downfall when we are trying to cut back and eat a little cleaner. Ketchup, & steak and barbeque sauces are loaded with sugar. Mayonnaise, sour cream and salad dressings can be high in saturated fats. It’s time to open your mind (and taste buds!) to these heart healthy alternatives. These dips and spreads also add inventive flavors to everyday sandwiches, wraps and burgers.
Here are a few to try:
Salsa has the few calories, but salsa preparations can vary widely. A good salsa made with tomatoes, and without too much added sugar, can be treated as a vegetable: it has no fat, lotsof fiber, and many other nutrients.
- Replace salsa for higher fat/carb salad dressings for a delicious taco salad.
- Use as topping for baked potatoes
- In place of mayo, ketchup on burgers and wraps. (Turkey,chicken, beef or fish)
- Stir into scrambled eggs or omelets.
Incorporate hummus as part of your balanced diet. Hummus is basically pureed garbanzo beans, also known as chickpeas. Garbanzo beans contain many nutrients and have numerous health benefits. They are high in protein and fiber. An ounce of hummus has 7% of your daily fiber. This high fiber also prevents blood sugar levels from rising too rapidly after a meal, which is especially important to diabetics.
Chickpeas themselves are relatively low in fat, but the presence of olive oil boosts the fat content in hummus. Olive oil, however, is rich in monounsaturated fat, a type that is heart healthy. Thus, not only does olive oil contribute its unique flavor to hummus, it also imparts significant health benefits relative to creamy or other high-fat alternatives.
Hummus is easy to make at home as well. If you have a food processor, throw a can of garbanzo beans in it with a little lemon juice, olive oil and garlic and you are done. You can be
creative too. Try adding a few roasted red peppers or jalapenos for more kick or a few canned artichokes.
At least one popular commercial brand lists a serving size as 2 tbsp. or 27 grams, an amount that contains 50 calories, 5 grams of carbohydrate, 3 grams of fat and 1 gram of protein.
If you love fatty, creamy, hearty foods and want to avoid the cholesterol and toxicity of meat and dairy, anchor your diet with avocado. Avocados contain 60% more potassium than bananas; they are also sodium and cholesterol-free. An avocado has a higher fat content (5 grams per serving) than other fruit, but the fat is monounsaturated fat, which is considered healthy when consumed in moderation.
- Avocados can replace butter by using it as a spread on bread.
- Use as healthy dip or dressing for veggies and salads.
- Replace sliced avocados for mayo on burgers, sandwiches and wraps.
This condiment is hard to beat because it has minimal calories and fat, but the sodium can add up quickly by the teaspoon.
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard (5 calories, 0.2g fat, 120 mg sodium)
- yellow mustard (3 calories, 0.2g fat, 57 mg sodium.)
When purchasing ketchup, mayo, salad dressings and barbecue sauces; choose lower sodium / lower fat versions and downsize the amounts added to recipes.
These smell amazing while baking and have a sweet, nutty flavor. Wholesome nutrition that taste too good to be good for you!
Curiosity finally got the better of me. I keep hearing about how Quinoa… (pronounced Keen-wa) is so good for you. But I had no idea what I would do with it once I got it home… So, I bought a box of “flakes” at the local health food store yesterday and this is what I came up with. I replaced quinoa flakes for the oats that I normally use in my baked goods. The flax seed and almond milk and almond extract give these a nutty flavor and the craisins and applesauce add just the right amount of sweetness. I was pleasantly surprised! These are great!
Mix together all dry ingredients in mixing bowl.
- 1c Quinoa Flakes
- 1 1/2c Low Carb Flour
- 2TBS Flax Seed
- 2 Scoops Vanilla Protein Powder
- 1 ½ TBS Splenda Brown Sugar
- 1 ½ TBS Cinnamon
- 1 TBS Baking Powder
In separate bowl, mix together:
- 2 egg whites and 1 whole egg
- 3 TBS Unsweetened Applesauce
- 3/4c Almond Milk
- 1 TBS Coconut Oil (melted)
- 1 tsp Almond Extract
Add wet to dry ingredients. Mix well. Stir in 1/3 cup of Craisins.
Bake at 350 degrees in lightly greased muffin pan for approximately 15 minutes. Cool. ENJOY!
Makes 12 muffins.
Quinoa flakes contain all of the nutrition of the whole Quinoa grain or seed, but cook much more quickly and are therefore easily adaptable to recipes. Quinoa is technically a “seed” and not a grain that is native to the Andes Mountain region. It’s low in fat and sugar, no sodium or cholesterol, is iron rich and a good source of slow-burning complex carbohydrates.
What makes quinoa unique nutritionally is that it’s one of a hand-full of plant-sources that has a complete protein profile. This means that a serving of quinoa contains all 8 of the essential amino acids that your body needs. Most grains only contain some of the essential amino acids — requiring you to “mix” your proteins (for example beans with rice) to create a full protein. This is especially good news to vegetarians. They are also gluten free.
A serving of quinoa flakes adds significant nutrition to your breakfast. They are a terrific alternative to oats. Substitute for flour in breads, muffins, pancakes and cookies for heartier and healthier baked recipes.
Organic Quinoa Flakes.
Serving Size: 1/2 cup (42 g)
Nutrient Amount %DV
Calories 159 Calories from Fat 0 Total Fat 2.5 g 3.8% Saturated Fat 0.3 g 1.3%
Monounsaturated Fat 0.7 g Polyunsaturated Fat 1 g Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
Sodium 9 mg 0.4% Total Carbohydrate 29.5 g 9.8% Dietary Fiber 3 g 12.3%
Sugars 1 g Protein 5.7 g 11.4% Vitamin A 0% Vitamin E 6.8% Vitamin C 0%
Calcium 2.6% Iron 21.9% Magnesium 22.4% Phosphorus 17.5%
Potassium 9% Zinc 9%
- Quinoa flakes are best stored in a sealed container in a cool, dry place. They have a shelf-life of 2 years from processing date
Experiment with different fresh and frozen fruits and yogurt flavors for variety.
Berries should be a staple to your diet… One serving of berries daily will do much more than just keep the doctor away. They are after all, natures #1 antioxidant fruit.
This protein smoothie is excellent as a post-workout meal, breakfast or mid-day snack or meal replacement. It provides the perfect balance of protein – from the whey and yogurt, carbohydrates – from the fruit and yogurt, and healthy fats from the almond milk and flax seed. It is also a great source of calcium, antioxidants and fiber. And, if that isn’t reason enough to give this a try… it really tastes amazing!
Mix together well in blender or Magic Bullet:
- 1 scoop vanilla Whey Protein
- Fresh or Frozen Berries (Blackberries, Strawberries, Raspberries, Blueberries)
- 1/2 container low sugar yogurt ( I like Dannon Light N Fit – Pomegranate Berry)
- 1 tsp milled Flax Seed
- 6-8 oz Almond Milk
- Crushed Ice/Water
Try different fruit combinations such as peaches, pineapple, melon, or banana as well as flavored yogurts. Substitute Soy for Almond Milk if you like. You really cannot go wrong with this one.
STILL NOT CONVINCED ABOUT THE POWER of ADDING BERRIES TO YOUR DIET?
….. READ ON:
This pudding packs a punch! ~24 grams of protein per serving; 23 carbs and only 5 grams of fat.
When cutting carbs pre-contest, I am continuously searching for ways to make high protein, low sugar alternatives of my favorite snacks. This is one version of banana pudding that is good enough to enjoy anytime, not just during contest prep. It is made with fresh bananas, greek yogurt and natural peanut butter; so it is not only ohh so good, it is ohh so good for you too!
In a medium bowl mix together:
1/2cup greek yogurt (plain)
1/4package sugar free banana pudding mix
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
1 Tbsp Naturally More Peanut Butter (or PB of choice)
1/2 ripe banana, mashed (save other half to top pudding)
(Optional) – 1 packet Stevia or Splenda
Gradually stir in approx 1/2 cup milk until mixture is of pudding consistency (I use light Soy)
Top pudding with remaining banana slices and sprinkle with additional cinnamon.
Place in Freezer for approximately 20-30 minutes or in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours until well chilled.
OPTIONAL: Top with 1/4cup granola, if desired
MAKES 2 SERVINGS.
Nutrition Information per Serving:
Protein: ~24 grams*
Carbs: ~23 grams
Fats: ~5 grams
* ( Macros may vary based on brand of Protein Powder or type of milk product used)
Greek Yogurt is an excellent source of calcium and is also higher in protein and lower in sugar than traditional yogurts you may have tried. It has a much thicker and creamier consistency as well. It is an excellent breakfast, lunch or snack food. try it mixed with granola, fresh fruit, or honey.