Health Conscious Peeps

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Sorry about seemingly abandoning this blog. I've been so crazy, busy lately, that I haven't had time to even cook. Things have been very stressful, and it has for sure taken a toll on my body. I feel so incredibly worn out right now. I look worn out too. I haven't worked out, I've tried to eat healthy while at home, but while we've been out, I've just eaten what I want. Which all needs to come to an end, because I have a big even coming up June 9th, and I need to look HOT.

Needless to say, this blog will go on much longer than 6 weeks...

Tomorrow, I begin anew... with TONS of water.

Should I weigh in again? Take more before pics? I'll think about it. 

Friday, February 17, 2012

Denying Yourself

Denying yourself the simple pleasures leads to trouble.

Yesterday had us in Dallas most of the day for a tennis tournament. We moved from Dallas about this time last year, and even though we're only about 25-30 minutes away, I feel like we moved to a different country.

Yesterday, I had the chance to visit some of the things I miss the most. Central Market, being one of those places. I love it for the food ideas, the environment, and the healthy, raw, organic foods.

I went a little nuts though, buying things I've been denied for almost a year, because we moved away. Calories, fat, and carbs, be damned... I didn't care. I was back in my element, and buying whatever appealed to my senses at the time. Lucky for me, Central Market is healthier than usual, and everything I picked out had low fat, and low calories. The sodium was a bit high in some of it, but those were the sauces, which would be mixed in with other things anyway. I mean, it's not like I'm drinking them straight from containers.

Speaking of that, they had these great yogurt drinks that I can't wait to try. Low fat, low carbs, and healthy.

We decided I should get to Central Market more often. It's not that far, and perhaps I won't be as crazy if I take the time to make some trips out. PLUS, they had my raw pistachios!!! I can't get those at Kroger...

Overall, Im a happy camper. I made chicken enchilada's last night with sauce I bought from Central Market. Only 3 grams of fat per serving, under 100 calories, and SO yummy. I used jalapeno tortillas that they make fresh right in front of you. Also low in calorie, plus jalapenos are good for your metabolism!

Okay... all this talk about food before I've even had breakfast isn't good. If had some chicken left over, I'd make huevos rancheros.... ooohhhhh, I might just do that!!!

Have a healthy day, emotionally and physically :)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Easy and fairly cheap grocery list.

Okay... I have tons of laundry, and I don't even know why. I also still have to do my workout/workouts. So consider this my procrastination tool today.

No, tofu is not on the list... although, the benefit of it being tasteless, is that you can pretty much add it to any food you cook, and season it however you would like :)

20 foods you should have in your home:
From with supporting literature from Eat This Not That

Yogurt: The best way to meet nutritional needs as far as dairy. Plus eating yogurt, is good for digestive health, and studies have shown, people who eat yogurt have a lower percent of body fat. I buy greek yogurt, because it has less sugars. Unless of course you're buying fruit on the bottom. Your best bet would be to get greek yogurt plain, or vanilla, or with honey, and fresh berries.

Tomatoes: They're low in calories and have tons of antioxidants! You know... cancer fighting stuff. I put fresh chopped tomatoes on anything from eggs, to chili, whatever... I love them. Oh, and you can make fresh salsa with them of course!!

Sweet potatoes: Lots of complex carbs, beta-carotene, fiber, and lots of different vitamins. They're good for your vision! I go through phases with sweet potatoes. Sometimes I like them, sometimes I don't. when I do have them, I will eat them baked. Or you can bake sweet potato fries... which are good with truffle salt, and ketchup... yum!

Salmon: For lean protein and omega-3 fatty acids. Studies show it lowers the risk of heart disease, which is great, because more women, than men, die from heart disease. I bake, or broil salmon, with lots of different seasonings. I also use it for fish tacos, and salads. We eat a lot of salmon in this house because I can do so many things with it! Wild caught salmon is obviously healthier, but I honestly don't like it, because while it's not got added food dyes, it does have tons of bones, which is gross. SO I admit, this is one thing I stray off of the beaten path with. I buy it farm-raised.

Spinach: or leafy greens such as kale, and romaine. One of the most nutrients dense foods on earth according to LiveStrong and my book. Here's the deal with spinach... I buy it organic in a bag. SO easy... I toss it in salads, use it in wraps, use it as a wrap, steam it and more. When I steam it, I can add it to a bunch of cooked foods and the family often doesn't even know it's in there... like my yummy chili, or jambalaya... they have no idea, and they still love it. Popeye was right... does this mean we can smoke a pipe too? Probably not...

Onions: rich in sulfur containing compounds, which provides cardiovascular benefits, protecting against heart attacks. I use onions in a lot of my recipes too, but I have to chop them up very small. That way they're barely noticed by the family. Fresh onions obviously go in wraps, on top of chili, baked potatoes, and whatever else you think they would be yummy with.

Garlic: Did you know garlic has proven to be the number one cancer fighter. It supposedly stops tumor growth. I forget where I saw it, but there was a video on this, and Garlic came out number 1 for stopping tumor growth. It also protects blood cells and blood vessels from inflammatory and oxidative stress. Like onions, and spinach, I use garlic with almost everything. No, I don't stink... :) If you don't want to buy fresh garlic, and mince it yourself, buy the jar of already minced. I use that... it makes everything so much easier! I also like to roast garlic... so yummy!!

Flaxseed: Provides fiber, magnesium, omega-3 fatty acids, and calcium. I buy it already ground, and it lasts forever. I add a tablespoon to my work-out shakes, cereal, oatmeal, basically anything I can add spinach and onions to, I can add this to, without it being noticed. The only time I really notice it is when it's in my shakes because of its density.

Eggs: Healthy, healthy, healthy!!! Low price, high protein, and you can basically buy them all season long. I buy cage free just because I am an animal freak, as in I don't like to think an animal is suffering so i can fulfill my needs. Not if it's unnecessary. There are so many ways to cook eggs, that you shouldn't tired of them easily... just make sure you aren't putting a lot of butter and oil in them... that's not good. I'll dedicate a whole blog on the many ways to cook eggs!

Edamame: rich in vitamins c, b, and e, and is also a good source of protein. Seriously, if you want a quick, easy snack, this is it. I buy it frozen, in a bag I can steam, pop it in the microwave, sprinkle it in sea salt, and it's good to go!! Yummy! Plus you have to work for it a bit while your eating it, so I figure you're burning a few calories too!

Chicken breasts: protein, obviously...but it's a lean protein that contains 18 amino acids, and no carbs. SO, if you want to build muscle, this is the way to go! You can do so much with chicken breasts. I always cook it in the oven. There are so many different ways you can add flavor to it too, meaning, like eggs, you shouldn't get tired of it too quickly. You can also use it for fajitas (add that homemade salsa), some bell peppers, onions, jalapenos (great for metabolism), you can put it in salads, eggs, burritos with multigrain wraps, regular wraps, etc etc. Chicken... it's where it's at!!

Butternut squash: high in vitamin c, beta-caratene, and beta-cryptoxanthin.. which is supposed to help prevent lung cancer. I love butternut squash, but I don't consider it to be something that is easy to prepare. Unless I can buy it pre-chopped, we don't eat it. I was very excited to find La Madeline, a restaurant here, now serves it with quinoa, in one of their healthy, low-calorie dishes!

Brussels Sprouts: vitamins a, c, e, b6, and k, with the potential to prevent, bladder, breast, colon, and lung cancer. I love them, the family does not. I roast them with different seasonings, steam them, and boil them in chicken broth. I chop them up and add them to quinoa, in baked potatoes, etc etc. The smell in the house, prevents me from sneaking them into anything, but at times, I manage to get them down the family's mouths.

Broccoli: vitamins c, k, and anti-cancer nutrients with the potential for protecting the cardiovascular system. I steam it, roast it with different seasonings, or serve it raw in salads. The family will eat broccoli, I really don't like it, but will eat it.

Black-beans: nutrient packed and cheap, they contain heart healthy, cancer preventing compounds. I add these in with fajitas, chili, eggs (and some of that home-made salsa).

Bell-Peppers: packed with antioxidants and reduces risk of disease. I love bell peppers. I put them in salads, wraps, eat them sliced and raw for a snack, fajitas, chili (chopped very small), eggs, jambalaya!

Berries: loaded with antioxidants, packed with vitamin c. Strawberries, blue berries, and raspberries, help lower your risk of breast and cervical cancer. I love berries. I mix them with nuts, have them in greek yogurt, make shakes with them. You can buy them frozen (just read the package to make sure there are no added sugars), I put strawberries in my wine. Berries are so good and healthy!!

Avocados: vitamins a, d, e, and k. Improves cardiovascular, and blood sugar regulation, and has been shown to prevent mouth, skin, and prostate cancers, and provides you with the healthy cholesterol your body needs. I love making fresh guacamole, add some fresh tomatoes, cilantro, serve with organic corn chips, fish tacos, fajitas, fresh salsa... delicious, and healthy! You can also make egg salad and substitute the mayo with guacamole. Trust me, it's good. I may make that for lunch today!

Asparagus: anti-inflammatory nutrients and folic acid, which aids in the release of serotonin in your system. It may also the formation of cancerous tumors! I steam it, roast it, eat it raw as a snack... serve it over baked potatoes, with salmon, mixed in quinoa. It's a great side! You can also put it in salads, in wraps...

Almonds: monounsaturated fat, protein, vitamins, minerals, lowers cholesterol! They are also a tummy-slimmer, along with walnuts. I buy them raw and put them in salads, roast them with seasonings for a small snack... a handful is enough when eating nuts :) I also buy raw almond butter and add it to one of my shakes... I think it's the energy shake. I'll give the recipe for that sometime soon!

Now some of my own stuff...

Low-fat swiss cheese is the healthiest cheese... I also buy fat-free feta, and weight-watchers cheese sticks for grab and go snacks.

If you have a gluten-intolerance, which I do, though I still eat whole grains. If you can't do this, shop the organic aisle in your grocery store... tons of gluten free choices. Just read the labels... if it's free of gluten, it may be high in other, unhealthy things. This is when you simply shop fresh...

Milk-Smart-Balance. It's a bit more expensive, but SO good. I buy lactose free-fat free. I can't do a lot of lactose, and you can't even tell it's fat free. Lots of Omega-3 in this milk! Plus, the expiration date on it, lasts a lot longer than other milks... good for the person who is on the go, but trying to keep some healthy things at home.

Right now, I need to get going, so will come back and add more later. I have laundry, workouts, and another blog I need to write!!

Go shopping!!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Horrible Guilt?

I'm not going to lie...

I'm eating cupcakes. I couldn't take it anymore. Everyone was posting pictures of cupcakes, and stuff from their kids Valentine parties, and it was just making me nuts.

So, I'm going to turn this into a lesson for all of us... one I learned long ago.

If you're dieting, you must give yourself a break at times. One (or two) cupcakes on a special occasion, isn't going to make you gain weight. Yet, you'd probably eat it, then jump on that scale first thing in the morning to make sure. My suggestion as far as the scale, would be to jump back on after 24 hours of good water consumption.

I think what I need to make clear as far as what I'm doing is that this is not a diet. This is about forming healthy habits... exercise, water consumption, food combinations, and anything else that will help us lose weight, AND keep the weight off, because of the habits we've developed. This does not make the cupcakes okay though. I know, I know...

I don't know about you, but I love to eat things with plenty of flavor... if I feel like I'm dieting, I'm starving all the time. It's all about doing it right!! I promise, the first lesson will begin tomorrow. The cupcakes are making me feel a bit sluggish... and honestly, it's been a long day. I've promised myself 3 workouts tomorrow. We shall see!! 

Monday, February 13, 2012

Happy Monday!!

My thought for today is this:

Starting the day out right... coffee, which for me, is a natural cleanser (right, you didn't want to know that)!
Then a dark chocolate kiss... the reason: dark chocolate has a number of health benefits! It helps produce nitric oxide which is important for healthy blood flow and blood pressure. It also gives you much needed energy, without the sugar "low" we experience after having a cupcake, and it prevents fat-like substances from clogging your arteries. It's kind of funny, because while it provides an energy boost, it also provides a calming effect! So, I have 1 dark chocolate kiss in the morning (remember too much is never good for you!) with coffee, and 1 chocolate kiss in the evening with a glass of red wine, which is also good for your heart!!

This morning's breakfast consisted of 1 hard boiled egg. There are many ways to make an egg, but this is often the easiest for me. I can put it in for 15 minutes, do whatever else it is I need to do, and come back when it's done. It's best to stay away from carbs in the morning, and give yourself that protein punch first thing!

It's also best not to make dinner the main meal. You should try to eat power packed breakfasts and lunches, have small, healthy snacks throughout the day (nuts ((almonds are the best)), berries, peanut butter, veggies like bell pepper slices, raw asparagus, and the usual broccoli), and a light dinner as early in the evening as you can. This doesn't mean you can't have a snack before bed if you're hungry. You can, just nothing crazy. A doctor told me that a hard boiled egg before bed, provides the good cholesterol your body needs (especially if you're not a red-meat eater), and aids in getting a good night of rest!

I know I promised you a list of 20 foods you should have in your home, and then a list of some super foods as well. I'll get that for you as soon as I can! I have to go work out while I can, get some things done around this house, and tonight the kids' school has a basketball game.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Monday!!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Busy Days

These past few days have been crazy busy with kid activities. I know, they're teens, and I should be way past this by now. Nope, soon, it will be college activities, and then marriage, then grandkids... ahhh. Your life is never your own once you have kids, but it's worth it... at times.


I posted a video and recipe yesterday, before I headed out. The video showed what happens as your food digests processed foods as compared to non-processed foods, and my recipe was just an example of one thing you can do with eggs for something a little different.  Eggs are very healthy when cooked right.

While I am a big fan of eating fresh, and organic, I know that people who lead busy lives don't have the time, or even money, to make their own pastas, grow their own gardens, etc, etc, and sometimes we have to eat processed foods.

What you can do when you have a choice, is this:

Buy fresh or frozen fruits and veggies, fish, and chicken.

*Red meat has nutrients in it that our bodies need, but too much red meat is not a good thing. It takes our bodies up to six weeks to process red meat... not exactly good for your intestines.

For your pastas, quinoa is an excellent substitute for rice and you can add all kinds of things to it, like dried cranberries, nuts, butternut squash... and the list goes on. You can also buy whole wheat, or vegetable pastas... this way you're still getting nutrients. They have fiber enhanced pastas too!! For me, too much fiber is a bad thing, but this may not be the case for you.

Salt is something to really watch. The reason I buy organic packaged foods, rather than their non-organic counterparts, is because the sodium content in these is considerably lower. Sodium (the iodide is important) is another thing our bodies need, but again, too much can be a bad thing.

I also have a book I highly recommend:

Eat This Not That by David Zinczenko

This is a great book because it offers so many different ways to eat, what to eat while you're on the go, meals you can cook at home (although, some are quite time consuming), and a number of ways to combine different foods in order to naturally boost your metabolism, and get the vitamin punch you need without taking pills. I love this book because it's the "real" person's book. Meaning, the suggestions in it, are easy for any of us. He includes breakfast, lunch, dinner, desserts, and snacks for eating out and eating at home.

Tomorrow I'll post a number of essential foods you really should have in your home... the ones that pack a punch, and taste good too!

For now, I need to wrap this up. Lots to do yet again tomorrow!

Have a great Friday night!!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

A quickie:

I love the title, but it's not as exciting. Actually, you need to make sure you've eaten and are fully digested before watching the following video.

My message before you watch it... always cook and eat fresh. It's a bit harder because you have veggies to chop, and you have to cook them longer, but in the long run, your body will thank you with more energy, and better health.

Today's breakfast consisted of:

1 oven safe ramekin (well two because I am not just cooking for myself here)
 fresh bells chopped small (red, green, yell) as much or as little as you need for your ramekin.
a handful of fresh spinach leaves chopped small
6 fresh cilantro leaves chopped small (I love the smell of cilantro)
a small bit of fresh purple onion chopped small
a handfull of fresh baby portabella  mushroom chopped small
a few pinches of fresh minced garlic
1 egg per ramekin

(it's easier if you chop all of your veggies in one fell swoop and use them throughout the week)

Spread a bit of virgin olive oil (1 teaspoon about) on the bottom of the ramekin.
put all of your veggies in
crack your egg on top
put it in the oven. (I broil at 500 and watch it closely)

When the egg is white, and the yolk is still soft, your dish is ready to go! If you prefer your egg fully cooked with a nice firm yolk, leave it in a little longer.

I'm very paranoid about eggs and how cooked they are, so I go back and forth on how long I cook mine. It's totally your preference.

The key word in this whole thing is FRESH.

Now watch this video and you'll know why!

Have a great day everyone. I'll blog again this evening. I just need to get going so I'll have time to shop before my son's basketball game tonight. This means I'll be eating dinner out. I'll come home with tips for that!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Facts

I should say the facts and the stats...

I'm 41 years old, almost 42.

My measurements:
38' chest ::ahem::
30' waist
38' hips
5'6 height
141 weight

If you weigh more than this, don't stop reading. I learned something many years ago, which people who are really in to physical fitness already know.

When I was younger, I was always under weight. I went into my college P.E. class, and on the first day, she was weighing us in with a scale that could read our body mass index. My calculations said I was obese, even though I was under weight. Weight didn't matter, just as it doesn't matter now. I had more body fat than I did muscle, and I can pretty much guarantee, that's where I am right now. That being said, you may weigh more, you may be overweight, but that doesn't mean your physical shape is worse than mine. You could actually be better off than I am at this point.

My workout:

I've really been fooling myself as far as my workouts. I go upstairs, climb on my elliptical for 30 minutes, do sit-ups, and then lunges with my 10 pound bar. When I'm done, I feel as if I've really done something.

I found out this week, that I haven't been doing a thing. I bought this new workout dvd set called KettleWorx. It comes with a weight called a kettle bell, and a ton of different dvd's with 20 minute workouts. I started this workout yesterday. Today, I hurt so bad, I almost had to crawl up those stairs. I kid you not. This was a 20 minute workout, and honestly, I think it was the warm-up that kicked my butt.

Today, I still climbed on the elliptical, and then I did my kettle bell abs workout. I swear I wish I could video myself... you guys would laugh! It's rough... ugh, and all of those people on the video were doing it with huge smiles on their faces. I tried that, hoping it would help, but eh, not so much.

What I'm doing different for now:

I'll post a list of foods (no worries, I try to keep things cheap), and meals, but right now, the biggest thing I've done differently since Sunday, is drink at least 72 oz. of water per day.

This is my new best friend. It holds 24 oz of water and goes everywhere with me.  72 oz is three of these, and  it's easy to drink three when you always have it! :)

It sounds like a lot, but really it isn't. I just have to pee a lot. It matters. I weighed 149 Sunday, and today, remember? I weigh 141. Cleanse your bodies with water... it's awesome!

I'll keep track of calories for you guys, but I've never done that in the past. I'm a fat/sodium watcher. I don't care... I'll keep track of all of it!! Haha...

Time for me to go figure out this tab thing, and catch up with other blogs!!

Until tomorrow!!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

It Starts Tomorrow

I know, this isn't the first time this has been done by anyone. I know I'm not overweight, which makes this not nearly as exciting. I know I need specific goals. I know people will expect pictures.

The before pictures have been taken, but I'm not posting them until the end, with the after pictures. I'll feel better about them then. I'm not sure what it is about a mirror, and a camera, but what I see in the mirror is never as bad as what I see in a picture. Scary!

You may be wondering why I'm doing this since I'm not exactly overweight. The reason is simple:

I don't feel well physically or mentally. I've been depressed and bored. I need people to answer to if I don't do what I'm supposed to, and maybe I'll find people to do this with!! Virtual exercise/get healthy buddies!

I eat a lot of junk when I'm depressed and bored, and lose motivation to do anything. I'm in my forties, which means menopause (yes, I've started early... woohoo-not!). Menopause means a very screwed up metabolism, and if I'm not careful, the muffin top. I don't want the muffin top!!

This blog will be a daily account, of exercise, healthy foods, recipes, funny pictures and antidotes, super-foods, suggestions, given advice from you guys, reference materials, whining... just kidding. I'll try not to whine. Tomorrow's post will document my measurements, weight, and my plan for the day.

Hey, this has got to be a day-to-day plan... it's easier to stick to it that way!

My goals:

I want to look tone.
I want to feel energetic.
I want that healthy glow without being pregnant.
I want to wake up and feel only the aches and pains from a good, hard workout!

My goal right now...
Go buy a lighter kettle ball, a knee brace, and a measuring tape.

My Test Post

Okay... I'm writing this to see what things looks like with a post. This is what takes me the longest... the creation of the aesthetically pleasing page. This looks way professional, right, right?!?!?