Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Your Vacation: Eating Healthy and Keeping Fit

The following article is written and sent to me by Cole Millen. It provides useful tips for frequent travelers to continue eating healthy while being away from home. Please enjoy reading the article and feel free to share with us the dietary tips you implement at your trips. Thank you!

Your Vacation: Eating Healthy and Keeping Fit  

You’ve worked hard these past few months, working out and eating right. You’ve lost lots of weight and you feel great, too. But now you have the opportunity to travel—perhaps for a vacation or a family reunion. Is it possible to maintain a healthy lifestyle while on the road? With the right knowledge under your belt and a little advanced planning, the answer is a resounding “Yes!”

If you are traveling by air, there are many ways you can manage your trip to include your diet and fitness goals.  Before leaving for the airport, eat a good meal so you won’t be tempted by snack foods at the airport. Be sure to pack some healthy snacks, such as dried fruit or nuts, in case hunger strikes while you are on a long flight. If you eat a meal during a layover, stick with healthy fare such as baked chicken and salad.  To counter the sedentary nature of air travel, use the stairs instead of the escalator. While waiting for your flight, tour the airport rather than sitting down to wait for your plane to begin boarding. 

Finding a hotel with the appropriate amenities and services like a gym and an in-house restaurant will make keeping your diet and fitness goals much easier. Doing a little research into this part of your trip prior to your departure can really pay off. I was recently researching reviews for hotels and found a great site that listed hotels in Las Vegas regarding not only their amenities but also the restaurants in the area. This was extremely helpful in not only finding a hotel but also figuring out which of the restaurants in the area would have healthy options for me. Well-known hotel chains located in metropolitan areas are more likely to have restaurants and gyms, so target these areas first. These facilities often feature rooms with kitchenettes or at least a small refrigerator, making keeping healthy foods in your room a cinch. Hotels in large, metropolitan cities are also likely to have another important resource nearby—a well-stocked health food store where you can easily acquire healthy foods and snacks during your stay.

Once you arrive at your hotel, hop on over to the local health food store and stock up on goodies to make your vacation spot feel like home. Having familiar healthy foods on hand will help you avoid giving in to cravings for foods that are high in fat and calories.  You can throw together a simple breakfast consisting of instant oatmeal (easily prepared using hot water from the coffee maker located in your room), fruit, and yogurt. If you carry a small crock-pot with you on your trip, you can prepare simple meals right in the comfort of your hotel room. Chicken, rice, and vegetables are perfect foods for crock pot cooking.  

Choose your restaurant with care. Avoid all-you-can-eat restaurants, as well as restaurants with mascots. If appetizer items tempt you, consider staving off your hunger with a small snack in your hotel room before venturing out. When scanning the menu, search for the following watchwords as cues for healthy foods: baked, broiled, fat-free, grilled, steamed, and stir-fried.  Avoid menu items designated as basted, battered, bottomless, country style, creamy, or smothered. Be sure to add vegetables as a side dish, emphasizing those with the brightest coloring for enhanced nutritional benefit.

By following these suggestions, your vacation can be fun without sacrificing fitness!

Author: Cole Millen 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Make your pizza healthy way!

As low sodium dieters know well, some foods are hard to make in a healthy way. Susan Devitt of GalloLea Pizza Kits has asked me to share with you her recipes to make healthy and tasty pizzas. I thank her for her useful tips and hope that you find them useful too...

Grill Your Pizza!
Healthy and Tasty, Our Favorite Recipes
by Susan Devitt

Most days, dinner time at my house has to stay simple and quick, and with summer
still blazing ahead turning on the oven is a big turn-off. When I'm too tired to
think about cooking I can always fall back on grilling a pizza. Since husband Tom
and I are the owners of artisan food company GalloLea Pizza Kits, pizza remains a
favorite and a staple in our kitchen all year long. But whether you have a Pizza Kit
or not, here's the skinny on grilling your own pizza. It's so simple, and the
results are not only delicious, but healthy with some of our suggestions below.

Along with the grill, for best results, you'll need a pizza stone.

Grilling pizza takes about 7 minutes at the lowest grill temperature, or 450ยบ. Keep
the grill cover on, but do keep an eye on it, it may cook quicker and you don't want
it to burn.

TIP: DON'T build your pizza on the stone, but place the stone on the grill BEFORE
you turn it on, so it heats up with the grill. That hot stone is the key to getting
a great crust, and it will prevent the stone from cracking. Just transfer your pizza
from the prep counter using a pizza peel or baking tray. Use corn meal on the
counter, and on the stone, to make the transfers easier.

Begin with your favorite dough and sauce. You may already have that time-worn recipe
but if not, don't despair. Just pick up a pre-made fresh dough-ball available from
many places like Whole Foods, Earth Fare, Trader Joe's, or your local healthy
market. Buying the fresh made dough will help you avoid a processed product that may
have too much salt and preservatives. Keep it simple and healthy. Pick up pre-made
fresh sauce too, and the toppings.

Alternately, if you're looking for a great shortcut to a homemade pizza, our
GalloLea Pizza Kits come with the crust mix and homemade sauce all in one package
(and it's organic, no preservatives). The Low Sodium Pizza Kit boasts only 24 mg. of
sodium in an entire pizza (crust AND sauce) leaving you a lot of wiggle room for
toppings. It also comes with a high-temperature cooking paper to build it on and
cook it on, so you won't need a pizza stone: pizza + paper go right into the oven or
on the grill.  (www.gallolea.com)

Begin by putting-out your pizza dough on the kitchen counter then top it with the
sauce. Now you're ready for any of our great recipes listed below. Then onto the
grill for several minutes and WOW! Amazing pizza! So go ahead: don't build a pizza
oven, just turn on the grill!

Horderves Pizza-
Instead of a red sauce, spread a fig preserve on the crust. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup
mozzarella cheese and 1/2 cup Gorgonzola cheese. Add 1/2 cup chopped walnuts. This
one will really impress your guests!

Breakfast Pizza
Spread spinach over the red sauce, then top with 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese and 1/2
cup Feta cheese. Instead of an omelet, try a pizza! Add a side of fruit and it's a
great summer brunch.

No-Cheese Favorite
Slice into pieces and saute in a cast iron skillet on the grill, or your stove: 1
red sweet bell pepper, 1 sweet onion (Vidalia or other sweet onion) in a small
amount of olive oil, just to keep from sticking. When it's browned and done add a
couple of tablespoons of aged Balsamic vinegar. This will caramelize the peppers and
onions in 2 minutes or so. This makes a generous amount to top a pizza and it's
super satisfying, sans the cheese!

Harvest Pizza
Peel a sweet potato, cube it and place it in a glass covered dish in the microwave
for 3 minutes till tender.
Sprinkle pizza with the cooked sweet potato, 1/2 cup mozzarella and 1/2 cup walnuts
or pecans. This combination is simple, and a real surprise when you taste it. At our
demo's, it's everybody's favorite!

Smokin' Pizza
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella, 1/2 cup grated smoked Gouda, 1/2 cup walnuts and for
the meat-eaters add crumbled bacon. Perhaps not the lowest in sodium, but with a Low
Sodium Pizza Kit you might just be able to make it a treat.

Farmers Market Pizza
It's not just grilling season; fresh veggies abound. So go ahead and get creative.
Pick up what's in season at your local tailgate market: tomatoes, garlic, summer
squash, broccoli, corn, you really can't go wrong on a pizza. With all these fresh
flavors, you can easily skip the cheese.

Have fun and make healthy pizzas! You'll find it's a simple meal with a big reward
in flavor and goodness.

Susan Devitt is owner, along with her husband Tom Gallo, of GalloLea Pizza Kits, an
artisan food company in Asheville, NC. Their organic Pizza Kits come in whole wheat,
gluten free, or low sodium. The Pizza Kits make a homemade pizza in 30 minutes, come
with the cooking paper and go straight into the oven or on the grill. You'll find
them in stores and on-line at their website or amazon.com. www.gallolea.com.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Stay Healthy with Cancer by Eating Right

The following article has been written by Jillian Mckee, a fellow blogger and complementary medicine advocate at the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance. It is about the benefits of eating healthy during and after a diagnosis of any kind of cancer. Ms. Mckee believes that although each different cancer has its limitations, if one can keep a healthy body, they can have a better chance to overcome this awful disease. I certainly agree with her and am glad to share with you her article on the subject. So without further ado, here is the article...

Stay Healthy with Cancer by Eating Right
by Jillian Mckee

The phrase “you are what you eat” has always dominated in the nutrition field.  What happens when you can’t stomach the foods that you normally eat or you are too sick to eat because of cancer? Now it is especially important to take notice of nutrition and plan to eat a well-balanced diet. Eating well will help improve your quality of life and increase your energy levels.  

It is important to approach your illness in a holistic way. Besides taking your medication, you should also take time for yourself and eat well. There are several benefits to good nutrition.  Eating nutritious foods can change your energy levels and improve your overall health.  

It is very important to consider your nutritional intake at every stage. Whether an active stage or remission, the diet of a patient is very important to their recovery. Appetite may change or have an experience where their former diet is unaffected.  

No matter what happens, it is important to eat a well-balanced diet that includes all food groups.  Eating well is not just important for your body, it is also important for your mood.  If the items that the patient would normally eat are no longer appetizing, then try something new. Exotic fruits, vegetables, and new flavor combinations can sometimes revive the palate. Seasonal fruits will taste the best and be sweeter than items that are out of season. Exploring different spices can also make a common food new and exciting.

When going through treatments, you may have to change what and how much you eat during a day. One way to ingest food easier is to plan smaller meals. Small, more frequent meals give you the chance to have more selection in your diet.  

Whether a person is adjusting to their nutritional plans because of a mesothelioma diagnosis or in order to stay in remission, it is important to plan for a balanced diet.  Having a balanced diet will help keep your body running and make you more happy. Eating a well-balanced diet can make your body perform better than you ever thought it could.