Dining Out Guide for the Health Conscious Eater

Here’s food for thought! Did you know the average restaurant meal has over 1,000 calories? That’s enough to blow any healthy eating plan. Fortunately, by following a few simple guidelines, you can dine out without having to sacrifice good taste and nutrition.

1. Avoid ordering an appetizer. It’s a little known fact that some appetizers have more calories and fat than the main course. Plus, many appetizers are fried and served with heavy sauces which will add to your intake of saturated fat as well as trans fats and calories. It’s not a healthy way to start your meal.

2. Say “yes” to salad. Salad is a healthy eater’s best friend. Not only will it fill you up so you’ll consume fewer calories overall, but it will also give you a hefty dose of antioxidants which are heart healthy. Be sure to ask your waitress to hold the croutons and cheese which will further reduce your caloric load. Also, choose your dressing wisely. Avoid cream based dressings and go for the vinegar based ones. You also have the option of using vinegar and olive oil which is heart healthy.

3. Make the right entree selection. Go for broiled and grilled rather than fried. Not only will you save calories and fat grams, you’ll also avoid trans fats which are so prevalent in fried foods. Instead, consider asking for a doubles order of vegetables with your entree. Very few Americans are getting the 7-9 servings of fruits and vegetables recommended for optimal health. Plus, by avoiding the starch, you’ll be reducing your caloric and carbohydrate load. Also, stick to tomato based sauces rather than cream based and you’ll enjoy a considerable calorie savings. Lastly, ask for the sauce to be served in a separate dish on the side so you can control the amount you eat.

4. Think about what you’re drinking with your meal. By not ordering an alcoholic beverage, you’ve saved yourself a considerable number of calories. Try sipping iced tea sweetened with a noncaloric sweetener, a diet soft drink, or water with lemon. You’ll be glad you did when you consider the calorie savings.

5. Indulge your sweet tooth wisely. Many of the chain restaurants now offer a low fat or low carbohydrate dessert selection such as a low carb cheesecake. These are wise choices for the health conscious eater and still allow you to end the meal on a sweet note. If a healthy dessert option isn’t available, try a cup of coffee with skim milk to help satiate your desire for something sweet.

6. Learn to control your portions. Many restaurants are serving larger quantities of food than in the past. If this is the case, put aside a portion of your entree at the beginning of the meal to take home with you. If you remove it from your plate before you start eating, you’ll be less tempted to overindulge.


Kick Start Your Summer With a Body to Die For

Have you ever heard of an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Well lets change that to a work out every second day keeps the doctor at bay.

Losing weight is no great mystery, simply exercise more and eat less. So why do so many people have problems with weight. Its simple they eat to much and don’t exercise enough. Plus all the other excuses, too nice of food, sweet tooth, no time to cook proper food or exercise etc.. Well what if you exercise regularly but don’t see the results. A mistake many people do. Here’s where their making the mistake.

Our bodies are a clever machine if you exercise the same routine each day the body will get so relaxed with that routine that it will almost go into auto pilot. Its like driving a car when you first learned to drive you were very, aware and alert of everything that was going on as you continued to drive and got into a routine you became familiar and now you almost go into auto polite you don’t have to think as much. Your body does the same when your exercise routine becomes familiar. This leads to very poor results. What you want and need to do is keep your body guessing. It add a bit of fun and variety to your work out too. Which is always a plus. A key trick of personal trainers is not to do the same routine two days in a row. How you do this is change the type of cardio or simply alter the tension and speed on a machine.

I have created a 3 day fat burning work out for you to use on a elliptical machine so you can have the variety and still lose the weight. Do a different workout every second day take a day off in between and after the 3rd day take 2 days of enjoy the rest. Then repeat the process.

The work out I’m going to suggest is all about monitoring your heart rate so you really will need to train with a heart – rate monitor. If you don’t have a hart rate monitor you can regularly check your Pulse or check out some machines have a heart rate monitor built in. Most if not all machines should have one built in. The idea is to change the intensity of your work out and know how hard you heart rate is working.

The following formula is used to calculate your heard rate 220 minus your age equals maximum heart rate . For example if you are 40 years old you subtract 40 from 220 which leaves you with 180 there for your heart rate is 180. To calculate 75% of your maximum heart rate multiply the number by 0.75 eg 180 multiplied by 0.75 equals 135 (180 x 0.75=135)

Use these tips for an Elliptical workout.

Monday -Sprints- 20 minutes – Alternate 1 minute sprints at 75% o more than 85% maximum heart rate take 1 minute recovery at least 65 % maximum heart rate.

Fat burning – 45 – Minutes Optimum fat burning zone make sure to work at 75% heart rate no less.

Hills – 30 minutes- Set the machine so tension will change through out and keep your body guessing.

When you learn the information in this special report, and use it exactly as described, you can create a hard, attractive body in ONE month. I usually tell people to give it at least 2 to 3 months. But, I have personally seen results in as little as 4 weeks. My confidence level has gone up 100 fold. Which i can honestly say is simply amazing. Check it out see if its for you. The important thing is to enjoy the process.

How Our Healthy Eating is Making Us Unhealthy – Five Tips to Live By

Every day there is a new headline about a new miracle food that will whittle your waist, grow your nails shrink your hips, and make your hair thicker and life happier. Our country is obsessed with healthy eating but we have one of the highest obesity rates and heart disease rates in the world.

As moms it’s a daily struggle to get our kids to eat their vegetables, drink more water and eat less junk. We often don’t make the best food choices for ourselves and family because our lack of time and energy. It’s so much easier to go through the drive through, or the grocery store to hot deli section to get the corn dog, mac and cheese rather than cook a meal.

I know it can be confusing and frustrating trying to figure out what is healthy for the family when the food industry is constantly telling you what is good or bad to eat. What’s interesting is that the good and bad foods are constantly changing. Last month Pomegranate juice was the miracle food so we had cereals, fruit bars, cookies and candies infused with pomegranate in it. Margarine use to be touted as the healthy alternative to butter but we now know they have trans fats which can clog our arteries and lead to heart disease.

As a mother I have learned over the years to stick with some basic principles of healthy eating and read the new “miracle” food headlines with a grain of salt.

1. Eat Real Food rather than packaged processed foods. Eat as many fruits, fresh or frozen vegetables and meats.

2. Eat Less set an example for your family and eat until you’re satisfied not full.

3. Make it a rule not to eat in the car – This will help you two fold, you and your family will eat less fast food and less food from the gas stations and convenience stores.

4. Eat together as a family and not in front of the tv will reduce the mindless eating . It’s a great tradition and way to catch up with the family and enjoy meals with the people you love.

5. Don’t eat anything with more than five ingredients Have you recently looked at the ingredients list on your box of mac n’ cheese? It’s full of preservatives and fillers and words that you can’t pronounce; and sound like a science project gone wrong. I know there will be days when you don’t have the energy and will to cook. There are plenty of choices to either cook straight out of the box or bag just add some fresh ingredients or limit the ingredients to words you recognize.

As busy moms don’t let these tips overwhelm your or make you feel that you have to do each and every one of them just incorporate one or two or adjust them to your family’s lifestyle. Also, give yourself some slack and let your kids have cereal for dinner it’s better than fast food and as long as it’s not a regular thing your kids and you will be happier for it

Michi Story is known as The KenZen Coach. KenZen is Japanese for harmonious mind, body and spirit. Michi draws upon this, her Japanese heritage and her training as a wellness coach, personal trainer and health & fitness specialist to help busy moms learn how to better manage their stress, get fit, lose weight, have more energy, and create more work/life harmony.

Does Fat Cause You to Be Fat?

Well, it depends. Today we will discuss Monounsaturated Fats. According to a study that appeared in Diabetes Care, a journal published by the American Diabetes Association, a diet rich in monounsaturated fats (MUFA) may help reduce abdominal fat better than a carbohydrate rich diet. YES, a diet with MUFA’s is a recipe for a healthy heart and a slim body.

Those who eat a diet with more MUFA’s, have a decrease in abdominal fat, even without exercise. But remember too much of a good thing is not always good. While a diet rich in MUFA is healthy, one should remember it should still be a calorie controlled diet. A calorie intake of 1200-1600 calories will help an active person lose weight, However, the USDA recommends an approximate 2,000 calorie a day diet to maintain a healthy weight, depending on age, gender and activity level.

So Monounsaturated Fats: Thats Good, Right?
Research shows that diets with healthy amounts of MUFA’s have a host of amazing health benefits, including:

• Decreased risk for breast cancer.
• Reduced cholesterol levels.
• Lower risk for heart disease and stroke.
• Weight loss.
• Reduced belly fat.

OK, I’m sold. What are some food that are rich in MUFAs?

• Olives and olive oil
• Canola oil
• Nuts and nut oils (peanut, walnut)
• Seeds and seed oils (sesame, flaxseed)
• Grape seed oil
• Soybean oil
• Avocados

So, Besides protecting your heart, decreasing your risk for certain cancer AND helping you maintain a healthy weight, sources of monounsaturated fat taste great! What else could one want!

Snacks Vs Treats

You need “a little something,” but how can you make a healthy choice for your afternoon snack? Registered dietitian, Jill Fleming, offers a great strategy for making healthy choices. By understanding the difference between “grow foods” and “treats,” even kindergarteners can make a healthy choice. It is an easy trick and it works!

Grow foods are items on which the sun has recently shined. The more refined and processed something is, the farther from a “grow food” it becomes. Raw vegetables and fruits are great examples of “grow foods,” as are whole grains. These foods fuel your body; allowing young children to grow and adults to thrive. Read the label. If there are ingredients with more than three syllables – it isn’t a grow food. Keep an eye out for high fructose corn syrup (another source of sugar) and partially hydrogenated oils (the source of trans fat); these are ingredients to avoid.

Treats are items which may taste good, but aren’t going to help you grow or thrive. It is okay to have a cookie or some ice cream, but it should be a treat — something special and extra, outside what you give your body to grow and thrive. Treats are not limited to sweets. For example, salty and fried items such as chips have no nutritional value, yet can be quite tasty. Soda, even diet soda, is a treat.

So, go ahead and have a treat, but make good choices. Here are some tips to help you decide:

Avoid items with trans-fat, which your body never needs.

Limit treats to once a day or a few times per week.

Pay attention to the portion size. Split the giant cookie with a friend or save half for tomorrow.

Don’t replace meals with treats. A doughnut isn’t breakfast – it’s a treat.

Beware of sneaky treats. Some things look like grow foods but a really treats in disguise. Yogurt with high fructose corn syrup is more like pudding than a grow food.

Limit soda (and diet soda) to treat times. Don’t drink soda as your beverage with a meal. Give your body healthy beverages such as water, skim milk and herbal tea.

By choosing “grow foods” at meals and snacks, you can afford to give yourself a treat. Reserving your treat for a glass of red wine and some good dark chocolate each night is enjoyable and can be heart healthy as well!

Healty Foods for Healthcare Professionals On-The-Go

meals, generally high in fat, sodium, calories, and sugar, remains a great risk to the health of the nation, especially healthcare professionals working long hours. Whether you’re a surgeon in surgical scrubs with ten-minutes to eat before you have to scrub in, or a nurse in a children’s ward, here are some great power foods that will keep your energized throughout your workday and beyond.

Water. Reading this you may find yourself saying, “duh?” but the truth is that most people don’t drink the recommended eight 8-oz. glasses of water a day. If you wear sports scrubs, you are probably more physically active and will need to up your water intake to replace what is lost in sweat. Some call it the “Eight by Eight Rule,” which is easy to remember.

Nuts. You don’t have to be a hospital dietician in tall scrub pants to know that an increase in nut intake has assumed with the reduction in risk factors associated with heart disease. Nuts also have fiber and numerous vitamins and minerals, such as Vitamin E. The best way to enjoy nuts is au naturale. Avoid nuts that are salted or sugared for maximum flavor and health benefits.

Yogurt. There are so many flavors of yogurt packaged especially for the on-the-go lifestyle that you might not have a chance to try every variety in a month. Yogurt helps boost your immune system and is a great source of high-quality protein. When you’re in the dairy aisle, remember to purchase a yogurt with low sugar content.

Coffee. Most healthcare professionals consider coffee an integral part of any given workday. Coffee has come under some criticism, but in moderation current research suggests that moderate consumption has no harmful health effects. So go ahead and enjoy a cup of health-inducing phytonutrients.
Oatmeal. Not only is oatmeal a healthy way to start your day, it is also one of the healthiest carbs around. Packed with potassium, zinc, copper, magnesium, selenium and protein, oatmeal also provides a healthy dose of fiber. Studies show that a bowl of oatmeal a day can reduce cholesterol anywhere from 10 to 20 percent. Customize your oatmeal by adding some raisins, a dash of nutmeg or a few almonds on top and enjoy.

Beans. Pinto, black, kidney and red beans-whatever your preference-provide a high protein, low fat addition to any meal or on their own. They are also rich in minerals, vitamins and antioxidants.

The Healty Benefits Of Soy

All soy starts as three beans in a pod. The beans vary in size and colors of the flowers and pods. It is a hardy crop that grows well in temperate climates, such as the area from North Dakota to Louisiana. In the early 1950’s the U.S. had surpassed Asia, as the leader in soybean production. But in 2005, Brazil surpassed the U.S.

For more than 5,ooo years the Chinese have regarded soy as a sacred plant, along with rice wheat barley, and millet. The soybean curd has been consumed by both peasants and royalty, as a household staple. Known for its high nutritional value, it contains eight of the essential amino acids, and is the only complete plant protein. Soy foods are a rich source of fiber, B vitamins, calcium, and omega-3 fatty acids.

In 1999, The Food and Drug Administration officially recognized the cholesterol lowering effect of soy protein. The health claim states that 25 grams of soy protein per day may reduce the risk of heart disease. The health claim also states that most soyfoods are low in saturated and trans fat. The American Heart Association has also recognized soyfoods role in a heart – healthy diet.

Research also suggests that soy may also lower the risk of prostate,colon and breast cancer. It has also been proven to be beneficial in the treatment of osteoporosis and other bone health problems. It has also been affective in treating hot flashes in menopausal women.

While soy is a very versatile product, there is a small percentage of the population that may be allergic. Many products in the U.S. now contain warning labels if soy is present. Working toward a better.

Heart Healthy Eating Without Maligning the Saltshaker

If you are like most of us who made the commitment to getting on and staying on the road to improved heart health in 2013, you are probably worried about the dietary roadblocks and detours that may lie ahead. Although the road to heart healthy eating may have a few bumps it is not paved with salt free restrictions that disallow the enjoyment of food. Salt is a seasoning that most of us love, and often take for granted. However, we generally don’t miss it until it’s left out of our favorite foods. Most of us can’t imagine enjoying food without salt. When salt gets wet and then dries, nothing is left but a tasteless residue. The ancients realized that when salt lost its taste it was of no use in food preparation, as the biblical text tells us “Salt is good for seasoning. But if salt loses its flavor, how do you make it salty again?” Can you enjoy food using less salt or in some cases without salt? Is it possible for you to prepare and eat food without seeing the salt pour out of the shaker like a Midwestern snow storm?

Since knowing why makes knowing what a lot easier, you need to understand that Sodium chloride (salt) is essential to the body. Medical scientists tell us that the sodium in salt helps transmit nerve impulses and contract muscle fibers, and balances fluid levels in the body by working with potassium. Only a very small amount of salt is needed to do this. For most people their body is designed to generally rid itself of excess sodium, but for some people consuming extra sodium makes their body hold onto water. This increase in the amount of fluid flowing through blood vessels can increase their blood pressure. This increase in blood pressure puts their body at risk for stroke and other serious heart health problems. The official guidelines for Americans with hypertension limit sodium intake to 1,500 milligrams a day or less. For individuals who do not have high blood pressure the U.S. guidelines call for a total daily consumption of less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium which is about 1 teaspoon of table salt. The average American consumes 3,400 milligrams per day which is well over the recommended limit.

We’ve all heard someone say that the journey of a thousand miles always begins with the first step. The saying is true, and most of us need to take more steps toward heart healthy salt reduction. Start taking your first intentional steps now. Since more than enough sodium comes from your salt shaker let us take a look at some easy ways to effectively reduce your daily sodium intake. Use dried or fresh herbs, and roots such as ginger, or garlic to instantly transform your dish from dull to delicious. Wake up your taste buds with a mixture of fresh hot and sweet peppers. You can also add citrus, vinegar (such as balsamic) or wine to that special dish to have you a lip smacking experience with less sodium. Some chefs recommend that you sauté or pan sear foods to build flavor and others recommend roasting to bring out the natural sweetness of many vegetables. Searing and sautéing also enriches the taste of fish and poultry. If you prefer to steam or microwave your dishes, jazz them up with a drizzle of flavorful oil and a squeeze of citrus. Raise the taste of these dishes to the next level by topping them off with some sweet or tangy herbs. Use these suggestions as you travel the road of good tasting heart healthy food with less sodium. The possibilities are limitless.

Healthy Living Tips For Good Heart Health

Heart disease is one of the leading killers of Americans today. The fact that most of us live very hectic lifestyles with many demands on our time and attention sometimes results in us losing site of the things that we can do in our lives to help assure that we are taking the best care of our hearts as we can. We are going to examine some healthy living tips that may appear to be common sense but can easily be overlooked.


Eat 4 to 5 servings of fresh fruits and vegetables each day. These foods are not only low in calories but they also contain vitamins, minerals and fiber that are essential to a healthy heart. If you feel that your diet leaves you lacking in some essential nutrients consider supplementation as an alternative.

In order to control high blood pressure and cholesterol eat whole grains. These are low in fat and high in fiber and vitamins that will help you do this. The risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity has been shown to be reduced by eating as little as three servings per day. Start your morning off by eating oatmeal (not instant) with whole grain toast. In the afternoon instead of snacking on a bag of chips substitute granola or even air popped popcorn.

Drink 6 to 8 glasses of water each day. This will do two important things to help your heart health. First it helps you keep your weight down. The body will sometimes confuse dehydration with hunger and you will tend to eat more than you should. It is also good for your skin. The second way it helps is that doing this will help prevent your blood from thickening. As your blood gets thicker it puts a strain on your heart because it has to work harder to pump blood to areas of the body where it is needed. By drinking an adequate supply of water your heart has to work less.


Exercise is a very important component of heart health. Aerobic exercise such as walking, bike riding, dancing or running is the best. Remember that when you are considering an exercise program take a moment and think about what you truly enjoy doing. If you enjoy something it is much easier to stick with it over the long run. Regular exercise will help control blood pressure and cholesterol numbers and make your heart and lungs stronger. Along with reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke exercise will also increase stamina and mood.


Many sacrifice sleep in order to make more time in their busy day. By doing this it limits the body’s ability to control blood sugar. People who have diabetes are well aware of this. What this can do is lead to inflammation in the veins and arteries. This can cause scars to form in the arteries and increase the possibility of plaque buildup. This buildup can increase the risk of heart attack and stroke. Your goal should be to get eight hours of sleep each night in order to protect your heart as well as keep blood sugar levels under control.


If you are a smoker it is important that you speak to your doctor and find a way to quit. Nicotine increases the amount of blood that is needed by the heart thus reducing the amount that can flow through the veins to other parts of the body where it is needed. Carbon monoxide will also knock oxygen molecules off red blood cells thus limiting the amount of oxygen which the heart receives. It is important to realize that nothing about smoking is good for heart health.

Happy, Healthy Hearts

Everyone knows that working out is good for your body. However, do you really understand the correlation between aerobics and heart health? There are many people who swear that doing aerobics is the best way for them to feel healthy and to be better in every aspect of their life. When it comes right down to it, aerobics and heart health is something that you want to keep an eye on because it is something that you can really focus on to get more healthy.

There are simply more benefits to aerobics than you can talk about in an article. However, the correlation between aerobics and heart health is something that you simply cannot deny because it is something that is going to stay with you and with your health forever. When you look at aerobics and heart health you are going to see that the more aerobics you can do, the healthier your heart is going to become. This might seem like a general idea, and yes, it is very general in that the more you work, the better your heart will work for you. However, there are specific reasons that this is the case.

When it comes to the relationship between aerobics and heart health the basic point is that by doing aerobics you are giving yourself a work out where your heart and lungs are constantly moving faster than they are when you are resting. This means that as you work out, your heart and lungs are forced to work harder. The more that you do, the more your heart has to do for you. By making aerobics part of your routine, you are forcing your heart to work each day, and this is going to make it stronger.

Basically, when it comes to aerobics and heart health the point is that they are connected. The better your heart is doing, the more aerobics you are going to be able to do without stopping. And the more aerobics you can do, the healthier your heart is going to be.

Like anything, when it comes to aerobics and heart health you are going to have to work your way up. If you haven’t done much working out, your heart isn’t going to be able to take very much right away. Aerobics and heart health are something that you have to work up to, so take your time and talk to your doctor in order to develop a great aerobics routine that is going to clearly benefit you.