Healthy Eats: Watermelon Avocado Salad

watermelon avocado saladWhen you think of summer, do you think of watermelon? I sure do! The Watermelon Avocado Salad is possibly the most refreshing side dish you could pair with your grilled chicken for a perfect summertime dinner! And it is so easy which we LOVE!

Chop watermelon, avocado and a little tomato if you have it. Squeeze a fresh lime over the fruit  and season with a little salt and pepper. Toss lightly as to not mush the avocado. There you have it, the watermelon avocado salad, a perfect compliment to your summertime cookout!

*Remember that while avocado is a fruit, it’s macronutrient composition should be counted as a fat in your meal plan.

We have so many healthy EATS that you can make right in your own kitchen!

*The exact portions will vary per person. Contact us for more details on your portions and macronutrient breakdown per meal/per day!

Healthy Eats: Crispy Beef Lettuce Cups

The next time you’re craving PF Changs, save yourself 1000+ calories and opt to prepare Crispy Beef Lettuce Cups at home instead. By using healthy ingredients and measuring your carb (rice) and meat portion before assembling the crispy beef lettuce cups, you’ll be sure to stay on track with your Check Total Health meal plan.

Beef: We like the organic grass fed ground beef – anything greater than 90/10 is ideal. 90 being the lean meat and 10 being the fat. Spray a skillet with non-stick cooking spray and heat to medium high heat. Add the beef and break apart into small crumbles. For seasoning, try the Mrs. Dash no sodium for steak. Cook the beef until it is crispy and no fat remains in the pan.

Vegetables: Chop carrots, bell peppers and onions. Of course you could use any vegetables that you prefer including broccoli, zucchini, etc. Start with the onions in a non-stick spray coated pan. If they start to stick add a little water. Then add in the carrots and a few minutes later the peppers. The amount of time in the pan depends on the crispness you prefer for your vegetables! Pour in 1 TBSP low sodium soy sauce, 1 TBSP PBFit or PB2 (the ground peanut powder), just a dash of sesame oil, and a bit more water if necessary. The consistency should be a thick sauce!

Rice: White (Jasmine) or brown, previously prepared and correctly measured based on the individual’s meal plan.

Lettuce Cups: We like the large butter lettuce leaves. Rinse them thoroughly and pat dry.

To assemble, you can either leave all elements separate and put a little in each lettuce cup or mix all of your veg, rice and beef together and then divide among the crispy beef lettuce cups!

Try some of our other healthy EATS in your kitchen!

*The exact portions will vary per person. Contact us for more details on your portions and macronutrient breakdown per meal/per day!

Healthy Eats: Tropical Snapper & Roasted Carrots

Summer is here and this recipe for tropical snapper & roasted carrots will remind you of sunshine and waterside dining. Use fresh or frozen snapper, seasoned lightly with salt and pepper. Broil in the oven for 10-12 minutes. Serve on top a bed of brown or white rice. Top with tropical salsa and toasted coconut and crushed roasted almonds.tropical snapper & roasted carrots

Tropical Salsa: chop tomato, red onion, cilantro, pineapple and/or mango. Squeeze the juice of 1 lime and season with salt, pepper, and a dash of cumin.

Roasted Carrots: Clean and halve (length wise) medium-large carrots. Arrange in single layer on a foil lined baking sheet sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Spray carrots with non-stick spray as well and then season with light salt, pepper, garlic powder and dried thyme. Roast at 425 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Then flip carrots and continue roasting for another 7-10 minutes.

We’ve got more healthy EATS where this tropical snapper & roasted carrots recipe came from!

*The exact portions will vary per person. Contact us for more details on your portions and macronutrient breakdown per meal/per day!

Healthy Eats: Banana Nut Bread

Can you smell it? Your mom’s homemade banana nut bread! The thought of it probably has you reminiscing about Sunday brunch at grandma’s house! Well now you can enjoy this classic treat without the guilt. This banana nut bread recipe redo is perfect for your breakfast and/or post workout carbs – be sure to pair your correct portion of protein and fats with it.

12 Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Unsweetened Applesaucebanana nut bread
  • 1.5 cup(s) Coconut Sugar
  • 1 Tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 7 large peeled bananas (defrosted if frozen)
  • 1 cup Nonfat 0% Greek Yogurt
  • 2 tbsp(s) Baking Soda
  • 2 tbsp(s) Baking Powder
  • 2 cup(s) Rice or Regular Flour
  • 1.5 cup(s) Old Fashioned Oats
  • 2 large Eggs whole
  • 1/3 cup Egg Whites
  • 1 cup Chopped Walnuts

Whisk together applesauce, sugar and vanilla. Add eggs until well combined. Mash bananas in a separate bowl. Whisk yogurt into applesauce mixture then stir in bananas. Fold in soda, powder, flour, oats and chopped walnuts. Pour into 3 large loaf pans. Bake at 350 degrees for 55-65 minutes, then if necessary lower the heat to 325 for another 5-10 minutes or until toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean. Each loaf should yield 10-12 slices.

Approximate nutrition facts (per slice): 145 calories , 3 g of fat, 28 g of carbs, 14 g of sugar, 3 g of protein

A great way to use old bananas is stick them in the freezer until you have enough to make this delicious treat!

Try our other tasty healthy EATS by clicking here.

*The exact portions will vary per person. Contact us for more details on your portions and macronutrient breakdown per meal/per day!

This is Making You Fat!

Aside from the obvious overeating and lack of exercise, there are some specific things you may be doing that’s making you fat that you may not even realize or consider!

  1. Skipping breakfast– Skipping the most important meal of the day will lower your metabolic rate for the rest of the day. Waking up not hungry is a true indicator of a low metabolic rate, so start revving it up by forcing a small breakfast in every morning within an hour of waking until you start waking up hungry! Make sure you make it a complete meal consisting of a lean protein, complex carbohydrates, and plant-based fat (e.g. Egg white omelet with Ezekiel bread topped with all-natural peanut butter.)
  2. Going Longer Than 3 Hours Without Eating– The food we consume actually has a metabolic effect on the body called the Thermic Effect of Food. Our body must heat that food up in order to break it down to be utilized and this process causes a spike in metabolic rate. So eat more often to burn more calories! This will also help to prevent you from overeating. One of the worst things you can do for when trying to reduce body fat is go a long period of time without eating and then overeat in a single sitting, so make sure you’re eating 5-6 properly portioned meals throughout the day.
  3. Flour-based Foods– Flour-based products like most baked and processed goods (breads/crackers, cookies, cakes/pastries, certain cereals, pie/pizza crust, etc…) are worse for you than pure sugar! Flour is extremely high glycemic which means it raises blood glucose levels rapidly…bad news if you’re trying to reduce body fat. Switch out those flour-based foods for whole grains like oats, long-grain rice, quinoa, barley, Ezekiel bread, and high-fiber cereals. If you’re unsure about the product just read the ingredients label on the package…whole grain should be the first ingredient listed, not flour. Just be careful, whole wheat flour is almost just as bad as white flour.
  4. Sweetened Beverages– The quickest way to add unwanted calories and added sugars to your diet is through beverages. I’ve had people lose 10+ pounds within the first week or two of dieting just from cutting out the sweet tea and sodas and drinking only water and other 0 calorie beverages. The other big issue with sugary beverages is there’s no fiber to inhibit the sugar from  being absorbed instantly, so again you get a quick rise in blood glucose which means that sugar will more than likely be sent to fat cells! Ditch the sodas, sweet tea, and any other sweetened beverages!
  5. Chemically Modified Fats– Fats are not the enemy! Well….not all of them anyways. Naturally occurring plant-based fats are essential and good for you when consumed responsibly; however, when we take a fat and chemically modify it to help preserve a food or give it a certain texture it alters the way it’s recognized and processed in the body. These modified fats not only contribute to heart disease, but they also affect ideal hormone balance/regulation by suppressing the good hormones that cause fat release/metabolism and encouraging bad hormones that cause fat to be stored. Most processed food items contain genetically modified fats, so read the ingredients label before buying and look for any of these: Trans fat, trans fatty acids, Hydrogenated/fractionated fat or partially hydrogenated/fractionated fat. If any of these are listed, put it back! Go for natural fats, such as nuts/seeds and oils, avocados, nut-butters, vegetable oils, fish oils, and coconut oil.
  6. Eating Too Little Protein– Protein not only helps to give the feeling of fullness and satiety, but it’s also the most forgiving macro-nutrient- meaning you can get away with eating a lot more of it without potentially contributing to fat cells as oppose to carbohydrates and fats. If you’re finding yourself hungry often, even after you’ve eaten plenty of calories throughout the day try eating more lean protein (e.g. chicken/turkey breast, white fish, pork tenderloin, lean beef, egg whites, whey protein powder, etc…) Your protein intake should be roughly 1-1.5g protein/pound of muscle (not body weight) or 30-45% of your total calories.
  7. Not Getting Enough Sleep– If you’re not getting 6-8 hours of quality sleep each night you’re much more likely to have a higher body fat percentage. One reason being that people tend to make bad eating choices late at night which is double bad after you’ve eaten plenty all day (eating late at night is one of the worse things you can do when trying to reduce body fat.) Secondly, lots of good hormone regulation and production occurs while we’re sleeping. These hormones are crucial for regular fat metabolism and muscle maintenance. If you’re having a hard time sleeping try exercising daily (or more if already) and get rid of the electronics/mind stimulation 1 hour before bed.

Sorry! No secrets or gimmicks here…just the usual eat wholesome, natural foods instead of processed foods and when you do eat, eat more often and have proper portions. Exercise more to increase your metabolism and it will also help you to sleep better! Your body is the only one you get…treat it well and you will reap the benefits for a lifetime!

If you’re in need of help with meal planning and nutrition coaching, please reach out to me! Eat for vitality and functionality…you deserve it!


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Healthy Eats: Grilled Vegetables

Ah vegetables. So good for you but not the most loved of all food groups. Why? Because most people don’t prepare them with enough flavor to be delicious! If boiled broccoli has you down in the dumps about veggies, try a new preparation: grilled vegetables!grilled vegetables

Many vegetables can be grilled directly on the grill grates: asparagus, peppers, onions, zucchini, squash, etc. You can also skewer the vegetables and marinade them in white wine, lemon, or lime juice and seasonings. For me, I keep our grilled vegetables simple: a little salt, a little pepper, some garlic powder and a spritz of non-stick cooking spray. On the halved avocados (considered a fat source as a macronutrient), I squeeze fresh lime, cumin powder, salt and pepper. The texture of a grilled avocado is very smooth and velvety – yum!

The next time you are bored with your brussels, try grilled vegetables instead!

Try our other tasty healthy EATS by clicking here.

*The exact portions will vary per person. Contact us for more details on your portions and macronutrient breakdown per meal/per day!