Main Nutritious Intent Website

Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Trick to Balancing Treats

Halloween is here again and that probably means your home has been inundated with miniature sized candy.  Does this mean it has to be a day of painful deprivation?  Of course not.  Here are a few tricks to keep the treats in balance:
  • Focus more on your good eating habits today - be sure to drink 8 glasses of water and try to get 9 servings of fruits and veggies in.
  • Stick to a regular meal schedule today - don't skip a meal in anticipation of treats tonight.  Halloween candy does not constitute a well-balanced meal.  
  • Plan out and enjoy the anticipation of your favorite treats.  Mindfully eating a few pieces of your favorite candy is much preferred over mindlessly eating whatever is at hand.
  • Prioritize your candy consumption.  Have a piece or two of only your very favorites.  It's not worth wasting calories on mediocre sweets.
  • Have a plan in place for leftover candy.  Whether you donate it to the food bank, toss it in the garbage or save a few favorites in the freezer for later enjoyment, make a plan and stick to it - don't leave it out on the counter to tempt you the next few days.  (Notice I didn't say send the leftovers to work?  Healthy eating at work is hard enough without a bowl of Halloween-dregs candy at every turn.
So yes, enjoying Halloween is definitely doable with a little planning.  I can promise you that there is a twix and a hundred grand bar (and maybe a mounds for the freezer) with my name on them out there today, but there is also a big water bottle, a banana, clementine, veggie soup and dried fruit & cereal mix out there with my name on them as well.  Happy, healthy Halloween!

Monday, October 14, 2013

The After-School Sandwich Bar & Grill

If you and your kids are tired of the same old routine for after school snacks, try opening up the After School Sandwich Bar & Grill.  Tap into your kids creativity and possibly their competitive natures by setting out some:
  • whole grain bread or tortillas
  • nut butters 
  • cheese slices
  • dried fruits (raisins, or berries)
  • sliced fruits (apples or mandarin oranges)
  • grill pan, sandwich press or toaster
When a half sandwich or quesadilla involves protein from nuts or cheese plus some fruit and the whole grain from the bread or tortilla, you've got a nutritional knock-out that is just the right size for snack time.   Plus you're kids may come up with some creative and gourmet combinations.  For example:
  • grilled whole wheat tortilla, colby jack and granny smith
  • toasted wheat bread, almond butter, mandarin orange slices and a few mini-chocolate chips
  • peanut butter, dried berry panini
Let your kids (and your own) creativity run wild and with very little prep or clean-up you've got a fun, new after-school snack to add to your repertoire. 
Find more tips on Studio 5: Art of After-School Snacking

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Going Green for Vitamin C

We all know that dark green foods are packed with nutrition.  And since it's cold & flu season, a lot of people start thinking about upping the vitamin C in their diet.  Well, green is the way to go for vitamin C - broccoli, kale, green peppers, and kiwi all contain fabulous amounts of America's favorite health-boosting vitamin.  But did you know that green tomatoes contain almost twice the vitamin C that red tomatoes do?  To me that means one thing: it's time to serve up some fried green tomatoes!  Don't worry, I'm talking pan-frying in just a touch of olive oil here, so no need to fret over the term fried.  This time of year as I get ready to tear out my garden, I hate the idea of wasting all those cute yet unripe tomatoes, so to me, fall is the season for this dish.  I cooked up a few for my lunch today (since the rest of my family fails to appreciate the culinary appeal of a tart, crispy-coated, green tomato slice). 
I love to mix a little BBQ sauce with some plain greek yogurt for a delicious dipping sauce.

If you're not sure you're quite ready for the southern dish of fried green tomatoes straight up, try them on a BLT.  I love the Fried Green Tomato BLT recipe from Cooking Light.  Whether or not you're getting vitamin C from green tomatoes or broccoli, be sure to load up your diet with plenty of fruits and veggies and you'll easily have enough vitamin C in your diet to face whatever winter dares to send your way.