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Blueberry Muffins
Foods to Help Your Immune System
Have a cold? Here are some ideas that can help
Holiday Help for Eating Disorders
Probiotic guide

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My Blog

Blueberry Muffins

Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins
Adapted From Scholastic Parent and Child Magazine
Makes 12 muffins
 
Ingredients: 
 
2 very ripe large bananas
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup white flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 pinch fine sea salt
½ cup brown sugar
1 ¼ cups buttermilk
1 large egg, lightly beaten
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil or melted butter
7 oz. blueberries, rinsed and drained
1 tbsp. raw brown sugar
 
Preparation:
1.   Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12-hole muffin pan with muffin cases.  Peel the bananas and mash it in a bowl, using a fork
2.   Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and brown sugar together in a large mixing bowl.  Make a well in the center and add the buttermilk, egg, olive oil and bananas.  Quickly fold the ingredients together until just incorporated, taking care not to over mix. Tip in the blueberries and give the batter one or two stirs.
3.   Spoon the batter into the muffin pan and sprinkle with the raw brown sugar.  Each cup will be quite full.  Bake in the over for about 20-25 mins. until muffins are well risen and golden brown on top; a skewer inserted into the center of a muffin should come out clean.
4.   Let cool in the pan for a couple of minutes, then transfer it to a rack to cool completely.
 

Foods to Help Your Immune System

Here are some foods that might help power up your immune system












Disclaimer:  this post in no way is stating that someone will not get a virus, these are tips on things you can eat that can help you to be your healthiest:


To start, try having some of these foods more often:  garlic, brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, spinach.  These foods contain many vitamins and antioxidants to help you body to perform its best. Some even have possible anti cancer properties.   Also, foods rich in vitamin C such as oranges, clementines, strawberries, raspberries, bell peppers may help ward off sickness.  


In addition, adding Greek or regular yogurt to your food repertoire gives you probiotics- the yogurt helps to add good bacteria to your gut to help get rid of the bad bacteria.  

If you are vegetarian/vegan make sure to take vitamin B12 and a multivitamin

Make  sure to engage in some joyful movement- rather than calling it exercise, find something that allows you to move, and is something you like, as long as you are medically approved to exercise. 

These are just a few things you can start to do for your health!!!

Have a cold? Here are some ideas that can help

What to eat when you have a cold for vegetarian/non vegetarians:

 
As I am fighting a cold myself and I am sure many of you are since stuff is going around, I figured I’d offer some ideas:
·      Hot lemon tea with honey- honey is shown to have some antibacterial properties and can help with your cough, the warmth can hydrate you and soothe your throat
·      Chicken soup- can get sinuses flowing- If vegetarian any vegetable broth based soup can work as well
·      Spicy foods- cayenne pepper and the like can get your sinuses moving as well, therefore helping the duration of the cold (also may help dulled taste buds due to illness)
·      Oatmeal or hot cereal- can also be very soothing, get your sinuses going
·      Water, and more water!  Seltzer is fine also.  The important point here is to hydrate
·      Vitamin C- oranges, clementines, orange juice, strawberries- these all have it! -Helps with healing/shortening cold duration
·      Zinc- you can add zinc supplements as symptoms start for about 5 days.  Any longer and you run the risk of breaking down your immune system
·      Salads if you can tolerate- all the extra vitamins can help you!
·      Fruit- for same reason as salads.
·      Try the Outshine frozen fruit bars for some extra fruit/hydration to help soothe your throat. 
 
Hope some of these tactics work and that you feel better soon!

 

Holiday Help for Eating Disorders















Help!  The holidays are coming!!
Here are some quick tips to deal with the holidays if you have an eating disorder.
 
Are you concerned that you might receive food/body comments from others?   It’s unavoidable sometimes.  Practice role playing what you might say back to someone.  Also try and understand where people are coming from, for instance“you look healthy” might be translated to someone with an eating disorder as “you look fat”.  Please keep in mind that the eating disorder is known to distort this comment.  The person many times is saying it  because they do care about your health.
 
For many-time offenders (i.e., the relative who keeps telling you to eat more or eat less) see if you can speak to them before the event.  Many times people don’t even realize their comments are triggering.  They are helping out the only way they know how.  How about teaching them about how that comment makes you feel?  Many times the individual does not even realize that their comments are so upsetting.  You may want to try to  to talk to people before the event, in a calm fashion rather than at a holiday which might be quite stressful. 
 
“Aren’t you going to take any more food- you know you need to eat?” can be followed by an” I’m fine thank you”. “ I am following my meal plan, or I know when I have had enough to eat, thank you”.   The more you can put yourself in control of the situation , the better. 
 
Make sure you have lots of support- if there is someone you can call before or after the holidays and is a great support system for you- definitely reach out to them.  Also attend all support groups an/or therapy /nutrition that you usually would attend.  Even though you might be busier during the holidays your support group  or program can help you with some of the stressors that can occur. 
Try and focus on the company and the conversation, not just the food.  That is what the holidays are  supposed to be about right?  Being thankful for family and friends, and of course for ourselves. 

 

Probiotic guide

Hi everyone!  A colleague of mine sent me this great guide to probiotics.  




Enjoy!!!!

What to pack on a long car trip?














Going on a long car trip?  Not sure how/what foods to pack?

First of all, have a cooler large enough to fit one meal and snacks for your family.  Most importantly make sure to have a cooler ice pack as well.  

For lunches:  pack sandwiches to go- pb and j, deli sandwiches (turkey, cheese, lettuce, tomato); all on whole wheat bread.  Pack some fruit such as washed grapes and clementines (just have a trash bag ready also!).  

Other items I recommend packing so you don't fall prey to the convenience store items which are: a)pricey b) not always the healthiest are: 

Granola bars,  such as kind bars, Larabars, Cliff bars, Nature Valley protein bars, and trail mix.  Also, air popped popcorn is a good idea (Skinny 
Pop tastes great and is easy to pack), and pretzels.    Why not get some go-gurts for the car (no spoon required), or small drinkable yogurts.  Part skim mozzarella and cheddar cheese sticks are easy to throw in the cooler as well.  

Of course, everyone should have a non-disposable water bottle with fresh water.  

These snacks will keep you satisfied and well nourished for your trip!

Enjoy!







What are some ideas for starches?









I frequently get asked for ideas for starches for dinner. 

Here are a few!

baked potatoes (1 small baked)
baked sweet potatoes (1 small baked)
roast potatoes (recipe below)
couscous (1/2 cup serving size)
pasta or whole wheat pasta, keeping in mind that the serving size to start with is 1/2 cup!

Be sure to have your other meal components on the side- 3-4 oz. of protein and your veggies.  

When you are in a hurry and really want fries- have these on hand-  Alexia brand oven fries (in freezer section, near the other fries)  These are baked, not fried.  



for this recipe, I recommend olive oil instead of vegetable oil

Enjoy!

What to Make for Dinner????















Not sure what to make for dinner tonight?  Don't have time?  Don't worry.  

Check and see if you have any of these items:
canned beans plus rice plus any vegetable plus any cheese
Cooked chicken plus rice or pasta or potatoes plus vegetables
tortillas or wraps and any meat, beans, or cheese plus veggies


If you have any of these items on hand just combine them and microwave them until warm!!!

Better yet if you have any bagged lettuce or carrots add those too!

If you don't have any of these items, not to worry- it gives you a good idea of what to have in stock for the next time you have a crazy schedule or a crazy night!!!!

Enjoy!!!!



Is It Ok to Skip Breakfast?



 

 




Absolutely not.  Within one hour of waking you need to refuel your body.  Your brain requires nutrients to function (especially glucose from carbohydrates). 
 
“I feel like I’m being ‘good” by waiting to eat”.  Trust me, you are not doing yourself any favors.  Anytime you delay eating during the morning/afternoon hours it sets you up for more eating later on in the evening.  Studies have shown this to be true. 
 
“My lunch period is at 10:50 or 11 so I don’t need to eat anything before that”.  False!  For the same reasons mentioned you still need to eat something in the morning.
 
“What is a good breakfast”?  Look at the UDSA myplate (www.choosemyplate.gov).  You want a little of everything.  Preferably a whole grain carbohydrate (cereal, oatmeal, granola) and some protein/dairy- yogurt, milk (can be almond or soy milk also) or peanut  or nut butter or an egg, and some fruit or vegetable. 
 
Good examples are:  cereal, milk and berries; toast with peanut butter and fruit; yogurt, granola and fruit;  egg and toast; oatmeal with walnuts, a little brown sugar and some milk and raisins. On the go?  Have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, or a granola bar and yogurt. You could also throw a scrambled egg with some cheese and veggies in a wrap and go!
 
In addition, if you go to school or work you will be able to concentrate better after having a decent breakfast. 
 
So let’s start tomorrow with breakfast!!!
 
Aileen Birkitt, RDN
www.nutrition4youllc.com

How to get more "Plant Based" in your Eating











Hi all.  Want to have a more "plant based" diet but not sure where to begin? 

Here is an easy way to start.  

Stock up on:  1 can of each- black beans, white beans, chickpeas
whole wheat tortillas (8-10 inch)
brown rice
quinoa or whole wheat couscous 
jar of pitted kalamata olives
sharp cheddar cheese
parmesan cheese
lettuce (dark green leafy- spinach, kale, romaine, red leaf)
fresh sliced peppers (red, green and/or orange)
rinsed, sliced and stemmed mushrooms
tomatoes 
or any other vegetables
salsa
rice

When you need a quick lunch or dinner, open a can of the beans, rinse them (to remove the sodium)
put in tortilla.  add 1/8 cup cheese, any leftover fresh or frozen veggies, 1/4-1/3 cup rice, top with salsa
roll up,  microwave for 2 minutes- done!

OR
coat a nonstick pan with 1-2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 minced clove garlic, 1 can of rinsed beans (your choice) ,add 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning and 1/8 cup parmesan, and fresh or frozen veggies of your choice.  Sauté for about 5 minutes.  Serve over 1/3 cup brown rice. 

OR
 open a can of chickpeas, rinse.  Cook quinoa or whole wheat couscous according to package instructions. 
Serve beans over a plate of salad greens and any other fresh chopped veggies.  Add 1/4 cup shredded cheddar or crumbled feta cheese, 1/3 cup quinoa or couscous.  You can even add 8-10 pitted kalamata olives.  Use a balsamic/olive oil dressing. 

If you always keep these ingredients on hand and replace after using you will always have these "go to" meals!

Enjoy!!!!
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