Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ten Super Foods You Should Eat

As I was completing my required reading for the week, I stumbled across this and thought I would share.

1.  Cantaloupe

A quarter of a delicious melon supplies almost as much Vitamin A and C as most people need in an entire day.

2.  Sweet Potatoes

A nutritional All-Star - one of the best vegetables you can eat.  They're loaded with Carotenoids, Vitamin C, Potassium, and Fiber.  Mix in unsweetened applesauce or crushed pineapple for extra moisture and sweetness.

3.  Fat-Free (Skim) or Low-Fat Milk (1% not 2%)

Excellent source of Calcium, Vitamins, and Protein with little or no artery-clogging fat and cholesterol. (Soy milk can have just as many nutrients - if the company adds them.)

4.  Salmon or other fatty fish

The Omega-3 Fatty Acids in fish, especially fatty fish like salmon, swordfish, and rainbow trout, can help reduce the risk of sudden-death heart attacks.

5.  Oranges

Great tasting and rich in Vitamin C, Folic Acid, and Fiber.

6.  Broccoli

Lots of Vitamin C, Carotenoids, and Folic Acid.

7.  Whole-Grain Bread

It's higher in Fiber and about a dozen Vitamins and Minerals than enriched white bread or "wheat bread."

8.  100% Bran Cereal

A half-cup serving provides about one-third the Fiber you need for an entire day - to maintain regularity, as well as reduce the risk of diverticulosis and heart disease.

9.  Beans

Inexpensive, low in fat, and rich in Protein, Iron, Folic Acid, and Fiber.  Choose garbanzo, pinto, black, navy, kidney or lentils.  Eat them as a side dish or snack, in a tortilla with salsa, or in soup.

10.  Spinach or Kale

Loaded with Vitamin C, Carotenoids, Calcium, and Fiber.  Steam 'em and eat 'em.

Brought to you by my Sports and Exercise Nutrition text.

It's a Beautiful Mornin'

Good morning! There's nothin' I love more than waking up to a big bowl of oatmeal and a cup of coffee. Notice the coffee's almost gone... :)
Mmmm. Oats and Chia Seeds, Honey and Coconut, plus the star of the show: Strawberries!

 I can't think of a better way to start my day....  

Except perhaps a nice long run!

IheartGoogleMaps. :)

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Un-Boring Chicken Tenders

After a long day at school, all I want to do is relax and eat a good meal (and maybe enjoy a big glass of wine too!).  Being uncreative tonight, I found a recipe on The Healthy Apron, for Baked Parmesan, Basil and Garlic Chicken Tenders with Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce. Doesn't your mouth start watering just at the sound of that? Mmmm. :)

So, I grabbed a few frozen chicken tenders out of the freezer and let them begin to thaw as I ran to the grocery store for a few ingredients.

Here's your shopping list:
  • 1/4 C Hellman's Olive Oil Mayonnaise
  • 1/4 C Honey
  • 1/4 C Dijon Mustard
  • Dash of Cayenne Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Dried Oregano
  • 1/2 tsp Dried Rosemary
  • 1/4 tsp Cumin
  • 1/4 tsp Salt Sense
  • 1 1/2 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbs Fresh Basil, minced
  • 1 Garlic Clove, minced
  • 2 Tbs Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1/4 tsp Salt Sense
 The first thing you want to do is mix up your Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce so the flavors have time to blend (30 - 60 minutes will do the trick).

Add 1/4 C Honey, 1/4 C Olive Oil Mayonnaise, 1/4 Dijon Mustard, Dash of Cayenne Pepper, and Salt and Pepper to taste. Mix well and Refrigerate. (P.S. The extras will make for a GREAT salad dressing or sandwich spread tomorrow)

In a small bowl combine 1/2 tsp Dried Oregano, 1/2 tsp Dried Rosemary,1/4 tsp Cumin, and 1/4 tsp Salt Sense.

Place your chicken tenders on a baking sheet using my tinfoil trick and top with your seasoning mix.

Pop the tenders into the oven at 425 degrees for 15 - 20 minutes.

While your chicken is baking, whip up your Parm-Basil-Garlic Topping.

Mince 1 Clove of Garlic and 1 Tbs of Fresh Basil.

Add that to 1 1/2 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 2 Tbs of Parmesan Cheese and 1/4 tsp Salt Sense.

Once your chicken is done, top each with a little of your Parm-Garlic-Basil mixture.


I straight-up poured the Honey Mustard Dipping sauce right on top of the chicken, but you can be civilized and put it on the side in a little cup. :)

I added a couple slices of bread and butter.  (I found a loaf of bread at Wegmans called Marathon Bread. How could I resist?!)

And a Spinach salad with Strawberries, Chia Seeds, Sesame Seeds, and Balsamic Vinaigrette.

Makes for a delicious meal AND easy clean up, which I love.

Now, time for bed so I can get up to run 9 miles tomorrow morning.  Sweet dreams!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Labeling Lingo (Part 1): Health Claims

A quick trip to the grocery store can leave your head spinning.  Food labels shout their benefits at consumers.  But what does it all mean?

I'm sure you've all seen products that look like this:

"Reduced Sodium," "Heart Healthy," and "May Help Lower Cholesterol"

Man, it seems like this can of soup has got something in there for just about everybody!

Let's break it down.

There are two types of labels, a Nutrient Claim and a Structure/Function Claim.

Nutrient Claims
Establishes the quantity of a particular ingredient, such as fat, cholesterol and fiber.

Examples)  "Low Sodium" or "Fat Free"

Nutrient Claims must meet FDA requirements.
(more on that in our next installment) 

Structure/Function Claims
Describes the role of a nutrient or substance in a food affecting the normal structure or function in the body.

Examples) "Improve," "Boost," or "Lower"

Structure/Function Claims require no FDA pre-certification.  Be Wary!  It can be attached to any food and phrased in a multitude of ways.  PLUS, there is no specification on how much evidence is required to make a structure/function claim.

So, taking a look at our can of soup, we see that there's a combination of two different types of claims.

"Reduced Sodium" and "Heart Healthy" are FDA approved, which means they have specific nutritional values they must meet.

"May Help Lower Cholesterol" is a structure/function claim.  See how cautiously they have worded this?  It may help OR it may not.  Tricky, aren't they?

Can you find items boasting their health claims in your cupboards?

Next Up: FDA Approved Labels and What They Mean

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Spaghetti Squash and Snow

Oh, how I long for a day when I can simply just strap on the ole' mizunos and hit the dirt road.

But alas, yesterday was not the day.

I dream of days when I can wear cute little running outfits like this...

Or this...

Or maybe even this!

Although, I am still on the fence regarding the running skirt...  
What do you guys think? Yes, way cute? Or Pass?

Yesterday, I piled on the running gear.  Thick socks, two pairs of pants, three layers on top (tank, cold gear and windbreaker), a hat and gloves.  I was determined to brave the elements and get my nine mile run in.

Things weren't so bad for about half a mile....

The bottom of my shoes were covered in packed ice, I was soaking, and the tiny ice daggers falling from the sky were stinging my eyes.

I tried, I really really tried. And let me tell you, I'm no wussy - I have gone out for a run in -4 degree weather.  But icy and soaked?  I had to turn around after a mile and a 1/2. :(  At least I got three miles in... 

Later, after work, I had my first go at Spaghetti Squash! It was so easy (can you detect a theme?) AND super delicious.

I took my 'sgetti squash and halved it.

Filled a baking dish with half an inch of water.  Covered it with tin foil and popped it in the oven at 375 for 45 minutes.  Then I flipped the squash and continued to bake it for another 15 minutes.

Next, I scooped out the seeds and gently scraped the sides to get all the deliciousness out.

The last step was to toss it in a skillet, add spices of your choosing ( I used Garlic, Basil, Oregano, Sage and Dried Chili Peppers) and a little butter (I used about 2 T of Land 'o Lakes Light Butter).

Heat through and plate! I added a spinach salad and a slice of my seven grain sourdough loaf from Wegmans.

It was so creamy and the chili peppers gave it a nice spicy kick. It's a hit!

I definitely went back for seconds, but that's okay because spaghetti squash is only 42 calories per 1 Cup!  

Hope you are all having a great week!  I'm off to work now.  Tomorrow is FRIDAY! Woo-Hoo!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Hawaiian Steak Stir Fry

So, after Restaurant Ops I was sent home with a big Tupperware of flank steak AND pineapple mango salsa... for FREE! What to cook, what to cook!

This is my creation.
I call it Hawaiian Steak Stir Fry.
Dah-dah-dah-DAHH! (That's superhero music btw)

Remember all that great veg I cut up this weekend? Well let me tell you, SUCH a time saver.  

This is what I did:  
I got out my big skillet, and added...
  • 1 tablespoon of canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon of low-sodium soy sauce
  • Handful of (pre-cooked and cut) flank steak
  • Handful of veggies (green pepper, mushrooms, and broccoli)
  • A handful of homemade pineapple mango salsa (which includes those two ingredients plus chopped onion)
And, voilĂ ! Done! Plate with a little pre-made Quinoa and you've got a delicious meal in less than five minutes!


By the way, have you checked out the pineapple right now? It's PHENOMENAL! I know it's the beginning of the season, but they are juicy and sweet and delicious.

In other news, today we had an SDA meeting.  We talked about the t-shirt...
Here is the final product!

We had to do a little re-vamping due to NNM almost being over! Speaking of which, can you believe that it's almost April?

We also talked about the up-coming bake/snack sale and internships, plus volunteering at Foodlink and soup kitchens, and the Kidney Walk this Friday! You know, all that stuff that gets us nutrition girls goin'.  All in all, it was a productive meeting, and I look forward to what Spring has in store!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Weekend Eats and Treats

Oh boy, do I have some catching up to do!  You know those weekends that are really busy, but you don't really know with what?  Well, that was my weekend.

It began with a trip to Fleet Feet for new running shoes! Yay!! My knees were starting to bug me, and I was definitely over due.

These bad boys have seen better days.

Now I have these great little babies.

I think I am going to really like the dark gray.  Won't show the dirt as much. :)

Later that evening, we dug out the ole' charcoal grill from Collin's storage and had The First Grill Night of Nicer-ish Weather!  (I say "nicer-ish" because its only maybe gotten up to 60--But hey! For upstate New York, that's a heat wave!)

The burgers were delish, as were the bakery-fresh rolls and the grilled asparagus.  I love grilled asparagus.  Toss in a little olive oil, sprinkle on some seasoning of your choice, roll them around on the grill for a couple of minutes and BAM! Done. :)

Saturday evening, we headed over to the McCormack's for a little post-St. Patrick's Day Celebration.  Collin's mom made traditional Irish cabbage, cooked vegetables and ham.  So good! Juicy and delicious.  Yum!  I had a huge plate, plus cornbread, AND soda bread. Oh my.  I am full just thinking about it.  On top of all that, Katie made Bailey's cheesecake. Needless to say, I left stuffed to the max.

Sunday morning we had fresh pineapple and scrambled eggs with salsa verde. 

Do you live near a Wegmans?  If you do, pick this up!

 I really can't get enough of it.  

Sunday was grocery shopping day.  I got lots of yummy stuff.  

I think I need a bigger basket...

Here's a tip for you:  Clean and cut a few fresh veggies.  That way it's easier to throw together a quick salad or healthy snack.

Store them in tupperware and you're ready to go!

I also made a big pot of Quinoa (pronounced Keen-Wah).

For those who may be unfamiliar with this grain, quinoa is a complete protein, meaning in contains all of the essential amino acids.  It's also high in dietary fiber, phosphorus, magnesium and iron.  Also, it's gluten-free!

It's super easy to cook.  Just like rice.  I put this in tupperware too.  I have some delicious meals in my future!

Speaking of delicious meals, check out this breakfast.

I die.  Every bite was heaven.

This is my Superhero Oatmeal topped with:
  • 1 Tablespoon of Chia Seeds (soaked with the cereal)
  • 1 Tablespoon Nutella
  • A handful of raspberries
  • Sprinkling of Shredded Coconut

Certainly a great way to start my week off!  Hope you are having a great Monday too!