Weekly Link Roundup: Chocolate Cake, Snack Attack and the Next Fitness Craze for Boomers


By: , SparkPeople Blogger

Our favorite links this week:

Half Spelt Chocolate Cake
"Today I tied on the apron and concocted the mother of all vegan chocolate cakes. I’ve dabbled in numerous different recipes now but I have to say, this one might be the best ever. Light and moist, this cake rings in at only about 100 calories per slice. Heaven, huh? No, this isn’t my official birthday cake—my mom is making me a carrot cake on Saturday! This is my “last day of being 23 cake” and I decided to make it to bring to my parent’s house for dinner this evening. This cake comes together in half an hour flat and is perfect for every day…no need to wait for a special occasion—it's so healthy you could practically eat it for breakfast (and I just might tomorrow)!"
From Eat, Live, Run

Snack Attack (and a Giveaway!)
"It’s 3 o’clock in cube-land. You’re in the post-lunch lull, bored. You’re no longer interested in that Excel spreadsheet you’ve been slaving over for an hour, and you just need a break. More specifically, you need a snack break.

The vending machine is calling your name. Loudly. What do you do so you don’t wreck your waistline? So you don’t get that sugar spike quickly followed by that horrendous crash? Hitting the machine once every now and then won’t wreck your life, but planning your snacks ahead will keep you from scarfing those plastic chocolate Donettes or satisfying your sweet tooth with a pack of M&Ms.

Here are a few snacks that have landed on our FBG desks recently, and we had to share."
From Fit Bottomed Girls

Katie’s Healthy Bites: Pantry Must-Haves
Katie Cavuto Boyle, a finalist on "The Next Food Network Star” and a registered dietitian, shares her pantry staples with Healthy Eats.

"A healthy pantry is the building block for any wholesome meal. For some inspiration, I wanted to share a peek inside my kitchen’s pantry. This is what I always have on hand so I’m prepared on busy days when there’s not a lot of meal-planning time."
From Healthy Eats

Skip It: Triceps Kickbacks
"Sometimes referred to as "bingo arms," the back of the upper arm can be toned and tightened by working the triceps. Unfortunately, most of us chose to do kickbacks to work the muscle group, and this might not be the most effective way to work your triceps."
From FitSugar

In the Long Run, Boomers May Discover That Racewalking Is the Way to Go
"There's a running gag in my family that goes like this: We'll be driving through some neighborhood and come upon one of those women (it's always a woman) power-walking down the sidewalk. You know the type: wildly exaggerated stride, arms pumping furiously, sometimes with a small weight in each hand.

"Dork walker!" one of my kids will cry out.
Sometimes it's me who does that.
Okay, it's usually me.
I think I might have to stop now."

I think I might have to stop now. For I have met some walkers, and they make a pretty good argument about why I might be joining them in the not-too-distant future."
From the Washington Post

Will dumping high-fructose corn syrup make Starbucks fare healthier?

"Starbucks, according to an article from Reuters, will revamp its food offerings at the end of the month. It'll have more salad. Phase out food dyes and artificial flavorings. And get rid of that whipping boy of the sweetener family, high-fructose corn syrup, in the majority of its baked good offerings.
According to the article, "Reworked baked goods that will debut at month-end include Banana Walnut Bread, which is made from 11 ingredients -- a number closer to home-made, a reduced fat Very Berry Coffee Cake that is 20 percent fruit, and an organic blueberry bar that was previously available only in the Pacific Northwest and a handful of other markets."
The Center for Consumer Freedom, a restaurant trade group, doesn't think much of this. In a statement, it says: "Beet sugar, cane sugar, and corn sugar are 100% equivalent in all nutritional aspects. An apple fritter is an apple fritter, not health food. And no matter what Starbucks' marketing whiz kids say, it will still have 420 calories and 20 grams of fat.""
From the Los Angeles Times

Customers Prove There’s a Market for Fresh Produce
"But will people buy them?

Vegetables, that is. Certainly on Wednesday afternoon, an urgent line formed at a cheery new produce cart that had materialized at the corner of East Fordham Road and Decatur Avenue near Fordham University in the Bronx.

“These strawberries look great, and they’re a bargain,” said Michelle Cruz, a 38-year-old graphic designer who lives nearby and found herself jostling other produce hounds under the cart’s jaunty green umbrellas.

The cart’s debut was the centerpiece of the first public celebration of a new citywide effort to encourage street vendors to bring fresh vegetables and fruit to low-income neighborhoods that have been called “food deserts” because of the predominance of fast-food outlets offering high-fat, high-sugar fare and the dearth of healthful culinary fare."
From the New York Times

Aside from the dailySpark, where do you get your healthy lifestyle news? What stories caught your attention this week?

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  • 24
    OMG that chocolate cake is to die for! And the deal about the Triceps... I had heard that once before and tend to believe it based on where I feel the "burn" when doing the exercise myself.
    Thanks for the leads on some good stories! - 6/16/2009   9:02:42 PM
  • 23
    Headed out for spelt flour asap! - 6/16/2009   2:35:39 AM
    interesting - 6/16/2009   12:13:06 AM
    I walked my 5miles today-21/2 uphill. Half a mile from home I saw two women walking. I felt like calling out to them "have you heard about sparkpeople?" I didn't, maybe next time but dang it I walked my hill today! - 6/15/2009   12:03:16 PM
  • 20
    Thanks so much for the Healthy Bites blog, which took me to Healthy Eats. What a cool site! - 6/15/2009   8:57:17 AM
  • 19
    Quite a variety of info here from desert to working off the batwings. As always, good info. - 6/14/2009   11:23:48 PM
  • _MAOMAO_
    Great articles! Rather coy, starting w/ a chocolate cake recipe. About triceps exercises, I actually the hardest time w/ the bent-knee tricep push-ups. It's too hard on my wrists and shoulders. The straight-leg push-ups seem to isolate my triceps better, I guess, since that bothers the rest of me less. - 6/14/2009   7:23:42 PM
  • 17
    that's so exciting to see the produce venders in New York. What an inovative idea someone on the council had. Hurray for bringing food to those that have little access to it! - 6/14/2009   10:22:05 AM
  • 16
    I had no idea there was a name for the "dork walking" that I do. My husband has been laughing at me for years. I can't wait to show him this article! - 6/14/2009   10:17:12 AM
  • 15
    I live near Springfield, MA, MA's third largest city. Every summer they have a downtown farmer's market, mostly on Fridays (last year, they had it on Wednesday, and I don't think it did as well). This is my husband's FIFTH year working there, and he has many, many regulars. I don't know about other states, but the MA WIC program gives its recipients vouchers good ONLY at farmer's markets and ONLY for vegetables. What a wonderful way to introduce vegetables! Of course, there are plenty of fruits, too. The stand my husband works at is the ONLY all organic place, and they do a bang up business. This market is almost COMPLETELY in the center of town, surrounded by all the hotels and the largest business buildings. They are packed, let me tell you! More - 6/14/2009   7:29:20 AM
  • 14
    In regards to the snack attack suggestions in the article: I am responsible, motivated and mature enough to realize that those packaged items are non-recycleable and I am not that disabled that I cannot boil water and prepare my own gelatin and fruit in five minutes at home and actually carry it out of my home.
    The companies will do anything to promote laziness and $$ spending just to get my hard earned $$. NO thanks! - 6/14/2009   7:27:00 AM
  • 13
    I am a dork walker (powerwalker) I love it and don't give a damn what others say about it. It is a good workout!!!! - 6/13/2009   6:24:55 PM
  • 12
    I disagree with the article about tricep kickbacks. It may only work one muscle, but if you use a heavy weight, you WILL work that muscle! Doing this, along with other exercises for your triceps, will build up your triceps muscle.

    - 6/13/2009   6:10:14 PM
  • 11
    Great blog and Choc cake yum yum - 6/13/2009   2:29:56 PM
  • 10
    Mmmmmm. Vegan cake.
    'Nuff said. :D

    Thanks posting that recipe. :) - 6/13/2009   12:25:26 PM
  • 9
    SparkPeople is my only source for healthy life-style news unless I'm looking for a specific health topic. I'm Goggle spoiled and will often do a search there first. I recall following up a Google search with a Spark search as a kind of final word.

    The topic I found most useful this week is the info on fresh produce. I goes well with the U-Pick blog. - 6/13/2009   11:47:40 AM
  • 8
    I was very interested in the racewalking. At 62, I think it might be the way to go. I have taken up running recently but maybe I would be better off with the other. Hmmmm. - 6/13/2009   11:11:42 AM
  • 7
    Besides SparkPeople.com I get a ton of information from RealAge.com. Dr Oz always has great articles and links for healthy living.

    I've been thinking about taking up running but maybe racewalking is the route for me. I appreciate the tips on stocking a healthy pantry, too! - 6/13/2009   10:58:36 AM
  • 6
    I LOVE the produce cart program! We have the same problem in all cities. Making it easy to sell fresh produce at a reasonable price where it is so desperately needed is a great idea! Way to go NYC! - 6/13/2009   10:33:32 AM
  • 5
    That cake sounds wonderful and I've got a birthday coming up. I love chocolate and have been avoiding it.

    Interesting article about Starbucks. As they said in the article and apple fritter is still an apple fritter. I try to avoid that stuff. I usually just go to Starbucks for the coffee. I have been known to indulge there from time to time. Just not recently.

    Love this series I hope you keep it up. I read all the article. Thanks much! - 6/13/2009   9:36:51 AM
  • 4
    I really appreciate all the links to the latest news related to a healthy lifestyle - thank you! If I have one small complaint, it would be to avoid linking articles that admit that they're "food porn" - there's so many temptations out there, I don't need to be tempted on SP too! (Sure the cake was made with healthy ingredients, but just looking at a picture that REMINDS me of chocolate and peanut butter could lead to dangerous thoughts...)

    My boyfriend and I both do triceps kickbacks on a regular basis, and when I used to go to Body Pump, they had triceps kickbacks sometimes too. I found it ironic that the same website had an instructional article about triceps kickbacks that described the exercise in positive terms. Regardless, I may try some of the other exercises they recommend as more effective instead next time I work my arms. - 6/13/2009   9:33:51 AM
  • 3
    Awesome articles! You guys are the best! Thanks. And that cake is definately a must try..... - 6/13/2009   6:57:14 AM
  • 2
    Definitely the 100-calorie-a-slice chocolate cake. Yum! - 6/12/2009   11:47:51 PM
  • KEAGAN75
    That cake sounds delicious! It is amazing how many good recipes are out there for healthy deserts. My wife just made some pumpkin muffins recently that were Vegan and allergy free. Sooo good! - 6/12/2009   8:31:10 PM

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