Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Young Women Service Treasure Hunt

For one of our class activities the girls decided that they want to do a service treasure hunt. The idea was presented that the girls are given a service assignment. (All service assignments had been previously determined and arranged).

The girls show up at their arranged location to perform the service. When they are finished there is a new envelope waiting. Inside is a clue for their next service. This continues for as long as your time allows. If they correctly figure out and follow the clues they will be led back to a "treasure" at the ward building or a leaders home.

The thing that makes this worth while is that we contact ward members before hand to set up service that they need done. For example, weeding a certain section of the yard, sweeping out gutters, sweeping off porches, picking fruit, folding laundry, loading the dishwasher or doing dinner dishes or reading a bedtime story to young children.

We split up into groups of 2-3 girls with each group having a leader nearby. It is a race to see who can find the treasure first.

This activity is a huge hit. Beware that it does take some preparation with the class president to get all the service activities lined up, the clues written and everything delivered. Let's face it, the best activities take work :)

Pictures to come later.

Young Women Service Activity

Next Sunday we are having a lesson on service. As I was browsing the web I came across this
I changed it just a bit to fit what I wanted, but the idea and much of it remained the same.

I bought 6x9 clasp envelopes wrote the girls name and TOP SECRET on the outside.

When they open the envelope there is a top secret assignment letter, a list of possible secret service ideas and a moustache that I connected to a white candy stick (I cut the moustache out with my silhouette machine).

Here is what my letter said:
Mission Possible

A Seven Day Service Challenge
Dear Agent ___________________,
Your mission, if you choose to accept, is to secretly serve others. For the next seven days you are required to perform random acts of kind service. The difficulty lies in your ability to not be seen, caught on tape or otherwise have your identity compromised. Begin by choosing and locating your targets. Next, choose what service or kind deed you are going to perform. Third, perform the service without being caught. Finally, record your acts of service on the sheet below. Prepare for this mission by logging into www.lds.org with your secure password and read “You are my hands” a talk by President Uchtdorf.
Good Luck on completing your mission. (Use the moustache for undercover emergencies only!)
Monday ____________________________________________________________
Tuesday ____________________________________________________________

“True love requires action. We can speak of love all day long - we can write notes or poems that proclaim it, sing songs that praise it, and preach sermons that encourage it - but until we manifest that love in action, our words are nothing but ‘sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal’ ”.
                                                                                   President Dieter F. Uchtdorf  (Ensign May 2010)

The next letter was ideas on service they could perform. Here it is:

Secret Service Ideas

Do one of your brothers or sisters chores without them knowing.
Make a treat and take it to someone. Ring the doorbell and run.
Read to your younger siblings.
Do what you can to make the day go smoothly without fighting with your siblings.
Make a family members bed.
Do the laundry.
Write a nice note to someone and drop it by.
Smile at 3 new people today.
Secretly clean out your parents car.
Call a friend and see how they are doing.
Pick up any trash you see for a whole day.
Don’t complain all day long.
Tell someone you love that you love them (family member or friend).
Secretly take your leader a special treat.
Make someone feel loved.
Prepare a meal for your family.
Visit someone (not just a friend) who might be lonely...with your parents approval.
Plan a Family Home Evening and invite a new family.
Clean your room without being asked.
Make something for someone and leave it for them to find on their pillow.
Weed in the yard without being asked.
Write a letter to a missionary.
So something kind for someone you don’t know very well.
Visit a less active member for the purpose of getting to know them better.
Give sincere compliments to others throughout the day.
Offer free babysitting for a couple who could use it.
Speak kindly all day long..no negative or complaining words.

My favorite thing was the moustache. 

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Yummy Clean Eating Nachos

Mmmm. These tasted so good. They were very simple to put together and warm in the oven.
Take your favorite clean corn tortilla chips and place a thin layer on the bottom of a 9x13 dish. Top with your favorite cheese, green onions sliced, black beans, freshly diced jalapenos. You can add chicken if you wish.

Now repeat the layers one more time. Put in a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes and enjoy with your best homemade or clean salsa. They tasted yum!

I love simple and YUM!

Happy Eating!

Cucumber Watercress Beet Green Juice

This morning I got up and headed right to our new farmers market. It was small, but I was able to pick up corn on the cob, cucumbers, peppers, squash, local honey, watermelon, tomatoes and beets. It was great and I hope that it continues to grow. I love being able to know where my food is coming from and that it is organic.

The juice that I made is very mild and may seem a bit bland due to the refreshing cucumbers I added to the mix. The kids all drank it and said that it wasn't a favorite but that it was "OK". I will take that. As I learn and create recipes, I am all for whatever my kiddos will drink. I noticed that the apples did not juice well this go around due to the fact that I used my apple peeler instead of putting larger chunks of apple into the juicer. That may account for why it was a mild flavor.

Cucumber Watercress Beet Green Juice

1 Bunch of Beet Greens (I used the greens from 3 beets)
1 Bunch of Watercress
1 Yellow Squash
7 Carrots
2 Cucumbers
2 Green Apples
1 Peach

Juice the produce starting with the greens, cucumbers and other produce. 

Here is a photo of the finished product. It is not as pretty as some of my other juices. My kids wanted to know why it was a gross brown color :)

For your info, watercress has many benefits including: Anti-anemic properties, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer, anti-oxidant, eye health, colon cleaner, improve thyroid function, liver detox, improves digestive function, relieves eczema and maintains healthy and strong bones. Wow. And this is just from one ingredient in this juice. 

I am going to start one of the reboot juicing programs myself this week to see how I feel. Visit www.jointhreboot.com to find programs, recipes and nutritional information about juicing from the star of Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead. If you didn't receive the movie free for being a BzzAgent like I did, you can find the movie at the link above and check out his incredible story of finding health. Then you too can learn all the benefits of juicing. Let me know if you try any of the reboot programs. I would love to know how you liked it. I will be reporting on my experience at the end of the week so stay tuned!

Happy Juicing!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Clean Eating Week 1 Update

This has been quite a ride for me this week. Clean eating is harder to do than I thought, especially with kids. With the exception of July 24th, a holiday here in Utah, I have eaten clean. My family has done a good job and are improving everyday. I won't ask for more than that.

I have tried several new recipes this week and ruined two of them right off the bat. I have noticed that on many clean eating websites some people opt to not eat dairy in their clean eating. I love milk and my body craves it now and then. I feel that it is important for my children to get dairy in their diet as well. We will not be cutting out milk and other dairy products. With that said, however, we will cut out yogurts with sugar, etc.

My kids have done well so far. They have had a few set backs, but they are aware of what they are eating. They ask me if certain foods are clean or not. I like that they are becoming more aware of what they eat.

I can tell you that since starting to eat clean, I have not been near as hungry. My cravings have practically disappeared in just 5 days. I feel satisfied longer throughout the day. It is wonderful to feel content don't you think?

If you are starting to eat clean one of the best things to be done is to decide what clean eating means to you. What will you incorporate and is there that one thing you are going to allow? For me, dark chocolate is my treat. Only far and few between, but nonetheless I have a treat that I love. I am allowing my kids a few holidays if they choose. I am hoping that they will not want as much after eating clean for a number of weeks.

As for me, I am going to incorporate clean eating as much as possible into my home and family, but there is the concept of moderation in everything and I strongly agree with that. After my 100 days of clean eating challenge, I will see if I indeed do feel better. I will at that point determine if it is a way I want to live my life. This is important to me because if it isn't a lifestyle change, I will not reap the benefits. At this point I am already feeling better and that is what I was hoping for when I started this challenge.

I enjoy socializing, eating out occasionally and being at family get togethers. The reality is that I cannot always control what is served and I have to eventually decide if I want to pack my own food everywhere I go. That seems a bit improbable to me at this point. I think I will most likely eat clean 99% of the time and allow for some variation at social gatherings making the healthiest choices available to me.

I enjoy eating clean foods and whole foods. Eating clean is definitely a healthier way to go about losing weight, increasing overall health or just to feel more energized. As a trainer I would recommend this type of eating to my clients as a positive lifestyle change.

So far so good.

Clean Blender Tortilla Soup

Mmmmm! I am amazed that my kids love this soup. Today we ate it for lunch with "clean" corn tortilla chips and a nectarine banana green smoothie. They loved this meal from the first time we tried it over 3 years ago. I originally got this recipe from the Blendtec recipe book, but changed it just a bit to adapt to what I had on hand.

3 Roma tomatoes halved
Small handful of cilantro, washed
1/8 Small Red Onion
2 Tbsp. Taco Seasoning
1-2 inch cube sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1 large carrot, washed
2 cups hot water

Place all ingredients into the blender and hit the soups button. I highly recommend holding the lid in place. Twice I have pushed my luck and both times ended up with tortilla soup on the floor, ceiling and all over me. I tried to double the recipe in my bigger blender top with the same exploding result. The hot water causes this exploding phenomena. So, follow the recipe and hold the lid in place.

Serve immediately with tortilla chips on top.

Happy Eating!

Nectarine Banana Green Smoothie

Whenever I make a smoothie or juice that my kids like, even my middle picky eater child, it is worth posting. This smoothie was a winner in our book. It is a "clean" smoothie as well. This recipes serves 5 (5 - 8 oz. glasses) and fits well into my Blendtec blender. If you have a smaller blender you may want to half the recipe so it doesn't explode all over the kitchen...or if you are up for an exciting morning :)
Buy organic or wash well with 1 part vinegar 10 parts water in the sink for 10 minutes.

3 cups washed red seedless grapes
1 nectarine pitted
1/2 cup washed blueberries
2 cups baby spinach (I keep mine frozen in the freezer and take it out when needed. It freezes nicely)
1 peeled banana
1 cup of ice

Put ingredients into the blender and push the whole fruit button.
Pour into cups and serve immediately. Enjoy!

Happy Eating!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Why Organic Produce for Juicing?

There is a huge amount of information available today via the internet. As I change my eating habits it is sometimes difficult to know what information is vital for my success in eating the healthiest foods available to me. Juicing brings in the extra challenge to get the best produce knowing that everything in or on the produce will go into my juice and therefore into my body. With many pesticides used in the commercial production of food, I feel it is important to know how to minimize the pesticide impact on my body and my family.

The USDA, Consumer Reports and The Environmental Working Group got together and listed the produce containing the highest levels of pesticides. With this knowledge I am able to know which produce I am going to work to get from local farmers, farmers markets or organic from the grocery store. I try to buy organic, but it is not always possible for me. This list of produce consists of fruits and vegetables with the most pesticides.
  • Celery
  • Peaches
  • Strawberries
  • Apples
  • Blueberries
  • Nectarines
  • Bell Peppers
  • Spinach
  • Cherries
  • Kale/Collard Greens
  • Potatoes
  • Imported Grapes
And here is the list of produce with the lowest amounts of pesticides.
  • Onions
  • Avocados
  • Sweet Corn
  • Pineapples
  • Mangoes
  • Sweet Peas
  • Asparagus
  • Kiwis
  • Cabbage
  • Eggplant
  • cantaloupes
  • Watermelons
  • Grapefruits
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Honeydew melons
In my quest for information I love these lists to help me diminish the probability of pesticides harming my family and having a negative affect on our health.

Did you know? You should not put Bean Sprouts, Figs, Bananas, Avocado, Bok Choy or Mushrooms into your juicer.

This information and more can be found at www.jointhereboot.com. Although this information was provided to me free of charge along with the documentary Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead for being a BzzAgent, all opinions in my blog are my own and I feel strongly about the information presented. 

Happy Eating!

Robust Red Juice Recipe

We are back in our home after our flood...for the time being. I did not do a good job at clean eating on the run, at hotels, restaurants and relatives homes so I officially started this morning. Along with my egg white omelet, I threw together a beautiful red juice that wasn't bad. In fact, I really liked it. My husband said it wasn't bad and my kids practically spit it out :) Ha. I love how honest my kids are...most of the time. (I am very careful with the "does this make my butt look big?" questions).

I went to the store to find that they did not have organic produce. Dang! I bought what I needed, came home and put 1 part distilled vinegar into 10 parts water in the kitchen sink. I placed all my juicing ingredients into the sink and let them sit for about 10 minutes. I scrubbed the carrots and the beets with a vegetable brush then rinsed everything in cool water to get the pesticides and wax off. I think it worked well.

Here is my recipe for this morning's  
"Robust Red Juice"

2 Large Handfuls of Baby Kale (found last week at Costco)
3 Collard Green Leaves
1 Beet
6 Carrots
4 Stalks of Celery
1 Golden Delicious Apple

Being a BzzAgent I received free information and the video Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead in the mail.  I get to watch and read about juicing and give my honest opinion of the product. The video chronicles one man's juicing journey to a healthier life. In the literature I received it lists many health benefits of a variety of fruits and vegetables. From this information I found that my Robust Red Juice helps protect good HDL cholesterol, protects the liver, is a great source of vitamin A and potassium, helps with muscle relaxation (we all need some of that :), increases energy, helps prevent cramps, detoxifies, helps estrogen ratios, discourages breast cancer growth, has anti-cancer properties and provides me with many potent micro-nutrients. WOW!All that in one juice.

Try this recipe and let me know what you think. Visit www.jointhereboot.com for more juicing info.
Happy Juicing!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

HIIT Workout Track or Treadmill

Here is another great workout to try. This is a high intensity interval training workout. You should already have a good base built up before trying something this strenuous. If not, start slow and build up. If you do not build up, it results in injury that can keep you down for a long time. So exercise smart, but push yourself.

This workout is done on a track or on a treadmill depending on your circumstances. It consists of run and active rest intervals. This workout can be done with other modes of exercise such as walking, biking or on an eliptical machine. 

  • Warm-Up: 10 minutes of easy, light jogging.
  • Intervals will be done in 1/2 mile increments at 90% of max or a 17 on the PRE scale (1-20 with 1 being easy and 20 being all out killer effort). 
  • Time each interval.
  • Light jog or walk for the same amount of time it took you to run the 1/2 mile (800 meters). This is your active rest interval.
  • The work ratio is 1:1 meaning that you run the same amount of time that you rest (by walking or jogging...it is called active rest)
  • Work up to completing 4 work intervals.
Happy Exercising!
Remember to do 3 HIIT sessions each week along with other cardiovascular workouts.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Metabolic Base Training

Have you heard the term metabolic base training and wondered what it means and why it is important? Let's look at it.

Our metabolism of fats and carbohydrates is based on Mitochondrion. One characteristic of mitochondria is that they respond and can adapt to stimuli. This is good news for us because metabolic base training, or continual sub-maximal aerobic exercise, has been shown to increase mitochondria size by up to 35% and to create 10-15% more mitochondria. What does that mean for you and I?

It means that our bodies will better metabolize fats and carbs and we will have increased access to energy while exercising. Yay!

Wondering what this means as far as working out? The first 12 weeks of an exercise program should incorporate metabolic base training. This is achieved by exercising at 65% of our VO2 peak. 65% of VO2 max correlates to a somewhat hard intensity. It should not be easy. For example, if you can sing you are not pushing hard enough. On the other hand, if you cannot carry on a conversation, then back off the intensity.

To summarize, long, slow training over a 12 week period results in an increase in mitochondria size and number. The more mitochondria we have, the more energy we can access during exercise and the longer we will be able to cycle, run or bike. So get out and get started today!

  • 40-60 minutes 
  • 3-4 times per week
  • 65% VO2 max
  • any mode will do (running, biking, treadmill, eliptical)
Happy Exercising!

Monday, July 16, 2012

HIIT workouts

Some of you know that I am a personal trainer by trade. I have 11 years of training experience. I quit training when my husband finished up his PhD and we moved, but I have kept up all of my certifications and continue to attend National Conferences such as NSCA. With that said, I want to do a blog series on HIIT, High Intensity Interval Training, workouts. This is a buzz word right now in the fitness community and rightly so.

HIIT workouts boast many benefits over other types of training.

In this series I will post 3 new workouts a week. HIIT workouts should be incorporated into your fitness routine 3 times per week.

I believe fitness is moving towards a combination of HIIT and endurance segments in one workout session. This means that you begin your workout after a dynamic warm-up with a HIIT workout and then finish it out with a longer, slower endurance workout. I will be adding some of these workouts into my fitness schedule as well.

Here is the first HIIT workout to go along with the 100 Day Fitness Challenge. This workout assumes that you have already been working out. If not, it is vital to work up to it by choosing a realistic distance for yourself. For example, run 1/4 mile instead of the miles. If you cannot run, do the same workout walking or on an eliptical if you have a gym or home gym you go to.
  • Warm-up for 10 minutes with dynamic movements such as light jogging. 
  • Run 1 mile at a pace that is difficult, yet doable. Time yourself or record your pace.
  • Run the second mile at a slower, more comfortable pace than the first mile.
  • Run 1 mile at the same pace/in the same amount of time as your first mile. 
  • Cool down for 10 minutes by walking.
Watch for my weekly workout schedule.
If you need specific help or have specific questions related to work outs please send me a message or leave a comment and I will get back to you.

Keep on Moving!

First Clean Eating Obstacle

Yesterday was my big day of starting our clean eating challenge. It did not go as planned and actually was a complete disaster. For reasons I will explain, I am starting "cleaner" eating this week and 100% clean next week.

Here's the story:
Yesterday we got up and quickly got ready for church. My kids came in and asked what they could eat for breakfast that was clean (I was so happy that they were taking the initiative...that was unexpected). After we got squared away, we ran out the door to attend Church. Church is 3 hours long.

Upon returning to our home we walked into utter caos and disaster. While at church our water line under the kitchen sink broke and water was shooting out all over. There was at least 1 1/2-2 inches of standing water on the tile, it went into our dining room, family room and the entire downstairs great room ceiling was pouring water.

After my initial reaction of wanting to cry we got started on cleaning up, calling the insurance, etc. The sad thing about this whole story? We just finished cleaning up a flood in a different part of the house and had spent less than 1 1/2 weeks in our finally cleaned up house. My new carpet is now ruined among many other things including our couch and nice rugs.

There is always an excuse to put off clean eating. I am not putting it off, in fact I am going to do my best with my circumstance. We now have to eat out for the next 4-5 days and I always find it difficult to eat as healthy as I want at a restaurant and it is almost impossible for my kids. I decided to wait to start as a family until next week due to these crazy circumstances and to allow my family to fully participate.
In the mean time I am going to do some extra juicing meals, which are clean, and do my best to pick healthy options at the restaurants.

I hope you had a more successful first week than I did :) Haven't started yet? Join me next week then and keep getting yourself and your pantry ready.

Happy clean eating!

Bloods Lake, Silver Lake and Silver Isles Lake Hike

Bloods Lake

We have done lots of hiking in Big Cottonwood Canyon so we decided to try a new hike.  Here is a map of the lakes that we visited on this hike. We saw Lake Brimhall, Silver Lake Isle, Silver Lake (not the one we all know near Brigthon Ski Resort) and Bloods Lake.

View Larger Map

We started the hike from the Park City side of Guardsman Pass. The trail head that we used starts in the Brighton Estates off State Route 152 (the road that goes from Midway to Guardsman Pass). 

Brighton Estates is a gated community and is private property. Anytime you choose to go onto Private Property please be courteous. Clean up after yourself and do not be a nuisance in any way so that we can continue to use these trails. With that said, if you choose to go this way, pull into Brighton Estates and follow the road until you come to Larkspur Road and turn right. Take another right onto Boulder Drive. Stay on Boulder Drive (be aware that you must turn once more I believe to stay on Boulder) until you reach Mars Way and turn right again.

The road is seen on the left near the tree line. Photo taken from other side of meadow.
Here you will come to a nice size meadow. The trail head begins right before you cross the road that goes over the small stream (if the water is flowing). The trail is on the left side of the road and once on the trail you can follow it up to the left or it crosses the stream bed and heads up the opposite side. Take the left trail. We accidentally took the right trail and that took us up to Lake Brimhall which is private property. They are very serious about the private property as it serves as a youth camp. Avoid this.

Going left is beautiful and takes you up to Silver Isles Lake , Silver Lake and we went as far as
Bloods Lake.
Silver Isles
Silver Lake

We took our dog as dogs are allowed up this side of Guardsman Pass.

Harry Potter
This hike was beautiful. Our 6 year old completed it without any trouble. It gets steep in a couple of sections, but nothing he couldn't handle. We ate lunch at Silver Lake and took plenty of water and snacks. I recommend taking a GPS if you have one. It helped us know what lake we were at and to find them in the first place. 

There is another route to the lakes that does not start on private property. We will be exploring this new route in a couple of weeks so I will post the trail head and pertinent info when I have it. 

Happy Hiking!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Week 1 Clean Eating Menu

I have searched through recipes and websites to find my week menu. It is easier for me to plan ahead in week chunks so that I can be sure I have all needed ingredients. Planning ahead takes out that last minute Uh-Oh...the second I realize dinner is in 30 minutes and I don't have any idea what I can make.

A lot of times I have failed by simply not being prepared. It is often times easier to grab something less healthy when I don't know what I am going to cook. I don't want to fail this 100 day clean eating challenge because I am not prepared. My son just returned from scout camp and Be Prepared is their motto...I am going to adopt that into this part of my life. I am sure I won't be nearly as stressed if I have a plan.

I have not tried some of the recipes. As I try them, if I like them, they will appear on my blog. For now, I have links to the recipes if you want to try them out with me:)

Day 1 - Breakfast: Egg white omelets with fresh veggies
             Lunch: Caldo Verde
             Dinner:  Gnocchi with homemade pasta sauce, warm homemade bread sticks and salad
Day 2 - Breakfast: Waffles
             Lunch: Lemony Pasta Salad
             Dinner: Tortilla Soup
Day 3 - Breakfast: Lemon Coconut Almond Muffins
             Lunch: Banana Peanut Butter Wrap
             Dinner: Grilled Chicken, asparagus, salad and quinoa
Day 4 - Breakfast: 2 egg whites and green smoothie
             Lunch: Chicken Salad
             Dinner: Corn and Leek Chowder
Day 5 - Breakfast: Steel Cut Oatmeal with honey and fresh fruit
             Lunch: Hummus and veggies, corn chips and salsa
             Dinner: Pizza with whole wheat crust
Day 6 - Breakfast: Banana Muffin and egg whites
             Lunch: Green Juice concoction
             Dinner: Nut Crusted Chicken, veggies and salad
Day 7 - Breakfast: Green Smoothie with Whey
             Lunch: Rice crackers, hummus and veggies
             Dinner: Morrocan Chicken

Good luck. I would love to know if you find or create any great recipes along the way...keep me posted.

Happy Eating!


Clean Eating Mac and Cheese

As a favorite dish for my children I had to come up with an alternative for regular mac and cheese. I tried it for lunch and they thought it was great. I was surprised, but I'll take it. Here is what I did.

                                                   2 cups uncooked whole-wheat pasta
1 cup 1% milk
1 Tbsp whole wheat flour (I grind my own using white whole wheat)
1/4 tsp. dry mustard
1 1/2 cups of grated sharp cheddar cheese (it may be good to combine 2 different types of cheese)
Salt and Pepper to taste

Cook and drain pasta.
Heat milk in a pan on medium low heat.
Whisk in flour and mustard making sure there are no lumps.
Remove pan from heat and add cheese. 
Stir until melted. Serve immediately over whole-wheat pasta. 
Stir to coat. Add salt and pepper as desired.

As I was making this dish I realized that it would have tasted great adding a chopped tomato or other chopped veggies that you may have on hand. I am not a fan of mac n cheese so the version with veggies might be just what I need. 

Clean Eating French Toast

My first official clean eating recipe needed to be something familiar that my kids would eat. I want to show them that clean eating isn't a different or yucky thing, it's simply a more natural way of eating. I made homemade bread and it is fantastic as french toast. French toast it is.

1 egg
5 egg whites
1/4 cup of low-fat milk (or milk substitute)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp real vanilla (optional)

Whole-wheat bread or homemade bread (without sugar)
Pure maple syrup
Fruit of choice on top (apples, strawberries, blueberries or bananas are my favorites)

Mix the first 5 ingredients together. Heat the griddle to 300-350 degrees. Dip each slice of bread into the mixture and place immediately on hot griddle. Cook each side thoroughly. Place french toast on plate, top with pure maple syrup or fresh fruit. Enjoy!

Here is the nutrition info for the egg mixture. My homemade bread adds another 110 calories per slice and the maple syrup adds 210 calories per serving. You can save calories by topping it with a banana instead of syrup.

Nutrition Facts

  8 Servings

Amount Per Serving
  Calories 25.1
  Total Fat 0.7 g
      Saturated Fat 0.2 g
      Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1 g
      Monounsaturated Fat 0.3 g
  Cholesterol 23.5 mg
  Sodium 46.6 mg
  Potassium 22.4 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 0.7 g
      Dietary Fiber 0.2 g
      Sugars 0.5 g
  Protein 3.5 g

Friday, July 13, 2012

Juicing...Worth the Hype?

As a bzzagent I have the opportunity to try products out for free, report back about them and talk with others about how I did or did not like them. I recently had the opportunity to receive "Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead" to watch and give my opinion about it.

How many of you have seen the documentary "Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead"? It chronicles the life of one man who decides to take his life into his own hands. Weighing in at over 300 pounds, the realization that he is unhealthy and headed down the wrong path hits him. He can either continue down this path of self-destruction or he can do something about it and fight for his health and a better life.

He chooses the latter and begins his journey with 60 days of juicing. In the end, he is healthier, happier and an advocate of juicing and healthy lifestyles.

There is no need to jump in and do 60 days of only juicing. I think many individuals get scared thinking that they need to go to the same extremes to get any benefits. Visit this website to read about his program called the "reboot" program. The nice thing about the reboot program is that there are a number of different programs to choose from. Some are all juicing no solids while others incorporate juicing at the beginning of the day and then eating a well-balanced, healthy dinner. One program is simply as many and as much fruits and vegetables as you want. Simply click here to take an assessment to find out which program fits your lifestyle. I love that it is FREE to access these juicing and meal plans.

I am incorporating juicing into my family's 100 days of Clean Eating Challenge. My kids like juicing and it gets them to eat more fruits and especially vegetables each day.
This morning we had this juice:

Apple, Carrot, Kale and Cantaloupe Juice
1 Cantaloupe
2 Apples
2 Handfuls of Baby Kale Leaves (found at Costco)
7 Carrots

Mmmmm so good for me!
The vegetables this site recommends to juice are: Arugula, Beets, Asparagus, Broccoli, Brussel Sprouts, Cabbage, carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Collards, Cucumber, Endive, Fennel, Garlic, Green Beans, Jerusalem artichokes, Kale, Leeks, Mustard Greens, Onions, Parsnip, Pumpkin, Radish, Sweet peppers, Romaine, Scallion, Snap peas, Spinach, Sprouts, Squash, Sweet potatoes, Swede, Swiss chard, Watercress, Zucchini and Tomato.

There are recipes, guides to what fruits to eat and general juicing facts and information. The main guideline is to eat a rainbow everyday. Make sure you get enough different colors into your diet so that you are receiving all the benefits.

The downsides to juicing are that it costs more money because lots of produce needs to be juiced and it is more time consuming to clean-up. Each time you use the juicer you must clean it up. My new juicer is much easier to clean than my old one and I have a system that works for me. I fill my sink with hot, soapy water. As soon as I am finished juicing I rinse off each part and put each piece in the soapy water. I scrub the piece with all the tiny holes in it before putting it in the water. Then after drinking my juice and getting picked up I pull each piece out, thoroughly wash them and replace the pieces for next time.

Considering the health benefits, I say incorporating juicing into the diet is worth the effort. Give it a try and let me know what you think.

Happy Rebooting!

What is Clean Eating?

When I approached my family about the idea of doing 100 days of clean eating the initial response was confusion. No one knew exactly what I was asking us to do. In their minds they believed we would not be able to eat the foods we enjoy. They asked me if we were "dieting". After assuring them that our food is not going to be horrible and that we can make dessert occasionally, things seemed to calm back down.

Eating clean is the gateway to a healthier lifestyle, healthier body and increased energy. It is not about depriving yourself of the food that you love, but of teaching and showing your body that there is something better. And guess what? It tastes good, improves health and helps us feel better. Our bodies will begin to crave these healthier foods.

Eating clean is eating food as close to it's natural state as possible. For example, grapes. Eat them straight off the vine vs. grape jelly. Eggs. Eat the free-range, hormone free variety. Fish. Eat wild salmon vs. farm raised salmon.

These are a few examples of what is meant by clean eating. Learn to read labels. If it has ingredients that you do not know or you cannot pronounce...it's best to stay away from the item. Look for food that has 5 or less ingredients as a rule of thumb.

Avoid sugar. Sugar is in so many foods. Again, read the labels. As I was cleaning out my pantry I was a bit shocked by the sugar I found in so many different foods. No soda pop, avoid alcohol and anything else that is processed. Water is a great drink that is good for you and has zero calories!

Fresh fruits and vegetables, whole-grains and lean proteins...a simple way to explain "clean eating". Check out this shopping list for a more in depth answer to what foods are considered clean.

Eating Clean Grocery List

Here is a list of "clean food" that gives me a good idea of what kinds of foods I should be trying to stock my pantry, fridge and freezer with. I will be making a few modifications such as under dairy they recommend margarine and I know that butter is healthier for me in terms of how it is made so I will be sticking with butter. Also, I do not drink tea or coffee so I will be loving me lots of good old water :) 
I found some containers at Costco that hold my different grains nicely. They are see through and air-tight. I took a sharpie and labeled each one with the contents and how to cook it. For example, "organic short grain brown rice. 1 1/2 cups water to 1 cup rice". It is quite handy and I can see not only how to cook it, but when I am almost out.
I will be keeping an eye out for other clean foods that I want to add to my list. Just remember that a good rule of thumb is: if it has 5 ingredients or less and/or you know what every ingredient is...it is probably a good choice:)
It's shopping time...wish me luck.

Produce: (choose in-season options) you can choose any of your liking.
Cucumber Romaine lettuce Mushrooms Green beans Asparagus Broccoli Squash Turnip Spinach Onions Garlic Celery Sweet Potatoes Potatoes Zucchini (baby squash) Tomato
Fresh berries (blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries) Apples Bananas 
Pears Avocado Un-sweetened dried fruit (apricots, cranberries, raisins, apples, prunes, figs, dates)

Whole-grain breads Brown rice wraps Whole-grain wraps (Ezekiel wraps)

Meat, Poultry, Seafood:
Chicken breast Pork tenderloin Salmon Tilapia, cod, or other white fish Firm and silken tofu Textured vegetable protein Beef tenderloin Bison Lean ground turkey
Lean ground chicken

Eggs (omega-3 variety) Skim or 1% milk Fat-free soymilk, rice milk or almond milk Fat-free, sugar-free plain yogurt Olive oil-based margarine Kefir

Nuts, Seeds and Oils:
Unsalted almonds, cashews, walnuts Unsalted sunflower seeds All-natural nut & seed butters (almond, cashew, peanut, tahini) Flaxseed Extra-virgin olive oil Safflower oil
Pumpkin oil Pam (or non-stick spray) Other exotic oils

Muesli Weetabix Kashi Go Lean Shredded Wheat All-Bran Steel-cut oats Cream of Wheat

Dry Goods:
Brown rice Wheat germ Oats Oat bran Quinoa Bulgur Millet Baking soda Whole-wheat flour Baking powder Vanilla, best quality Sea salt Sugar substitute (Agave nectar, Sucanat, Rapadura, stevia) Other whole-grain flours (quinoa,
amaranth, spelt) Spices (cumin, nutmeg, cinnamon)

Canned Goods:
Chickpeas Beans (navy, white, kidney, etc.) Lentils Tomatoes (crushed or whole) Water-packed tuna Water-packed salmon Low-fat, sugar-free, low-sodium soups Low-sodium corn and peas Tomato paste Low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock

Mustard Salsa All-natural, sugar-free tomato sauce Unsweetened, organic applesauce Honey

Green tea Maca tea Tulsi tea Coffee 
Bottled water

Bee pollen Protein powder (hemp, whey, rice) Omega-3 fatty acids Creatine (optional) MSM Magnesium Calcium Vitamins B, C, E Spirulina

Balsamic vinegar Rice vinegar Lemon juice Lime juice
Apple cider vinegar