I'm always on the lookout for good sources of fiber, which put me onto refried beans (watch for extra ingredients and sodium content on these,) sweet potatoes, almonds and raspberries.
Foods I'd have avoided (and still need to eat in moderation) that weren't as bad as I thought: natural (unsweetened) peanut butter, real butter, real bacon. High in fat, but if calories are kept in check, higher-fat options like these, nuts, eggs and avocado can assist in satiety.
If someone told me I'd be losing weight on bacon, peanut butter and sweet potatoes a year ago, I'd have thought they were looney.
Fitness Minutes: (1,617)
9/9/12 9:44 P
Reply to: IRISHDANCERMOM2
Couscous is processed and more similar to pasta than a grain; think of it as a simple starch without much value beyond carbs.
Quinoa is a tiny whole grain packed with nutrition; think of it as a power food.
Greek yogurt is strained and has nearly twice the protein of regular yogurt. Chop some fresh fruit or berries into it and you have a healthy treat. And comparing plain unflavored yogurt to plain unflavored greek yogurt, the greek stuff has less natural sugars. Flavored, sweetened yogurt has ridiculous amounts of sugar in either form and "diet" forms have enough questional chemicals and sweeteners to be a hazardous material.
Watermelon WITH the seeds. Surprisingly more flavorful than the seedless. Cold out of the refrigerator. Juicy and Sweet. Mmmmm.
Fitness Minutes: (1,985)
6 9/9/12 2:57 P
Hummus! I've always loved hummus, but I've been making my own for a while now and it is sooo much better than store bought! Plus, you can load it up with whatever veggies (or other ingredients) you want. Recently my favorite has been olives, artichokes, avocado, and spinach hummus. Just a regular hummus base of chickpeas, tahini, olive oil and garlic, plus the other veggies. Puree it all up and its SUPER yummy. I love to spread it on homemade whole wheat tortillas with a little goat cheese crumbled on top. Heaven!
I also love my raw milk and homemade yogurt I make from it too. Homemade yogurt is amazing! And you can strain it to make it thicker, or leave it like it is and drink it. Or blend it with a smoothie.
I've also been using avocado in place of butter and flax seed "eggs" for regular eggs in a lot of my baking recipes. I don't have a problem with butter (especially grass fed. Yum!) or eggs, but I have a family that doesn't like a lot of veggies or "healthy" things so I find ways to sneak them in to other foods that they like.
I love Nutella, but absolutely CANNOT buy it anymore because I have no self control with portions. I'll get a jar of Nutella and pretzel sticks and eat myself sick. I also really feel that their commercials are misleading about how healthy it is, but man is it delicious.
I just discovered how much I love olive oil and balsamic vinegar on salads. I know that olive oil can be high in fat, but it really does get me to eat loads more vegetables.
Thanks for the tip. I will say I do not drink soda, no sweet tea either. Gotta have my one cup of coffee in the morning and yes I like it sweet! But the rest of the day I drink pure filtered water nothing added other than I slice of lemon. So I guess I'll forget about the agave and just use honey or organic sugar. The only other thing I add any sweetener to is honey with greek yogurt when I snack on that.
And yes of course I LOVE whole vegetables and fruits. Always have.
9/9/12 1:50 P
Fitness Minutes: (3,581)
182 9/9/12 1:30 P
I always thought that Nutella was one of the things that packed pounds on me. It was not eaten by the spoonsful, then again, I wasn't tracking then. Or watching calories. It is fairly high in saturated fat, but if you look at avocados, they have some saturated fat too, and nuts do too. Myself, I look at it with caution and don't buy it any more because I have a problem with moderation with it.
Fitness Minutes: (3,581)
182 9/9/12 1:23 P
A few months ago I found out that Greeks eat honey with their yogurt. Yesterday, I decided to mix 1/2 tablespoon of honey in 1/4 c of yogurt. Before it was too sour for me. I was buying Green yogurt to make dressings and for baking. Now I can eat it straight out of the container.
Fitness Minutes: (4,530)
9/9/12 1:11 P
Cherry tomatoes, and couscous
9/9/12 11:56 A
Pearl barley is my favourite grain at the moment. It's got more bite to it than a lot of other grains and you can boil a big pan of it and it keeps in the fridge for days. It freezes well too!
Fitness Minutes: (259,320)
2,243 9/9/12 11:09 A
Hmmm...for me pasta IS part of my healthy diet...keeps me from feeling hungry after dinner & helps me NOT snack all evening!
9/9/12 11:05 A
Spaghetti squash. I was a big pasta lover and this can be used in place of the noodles in almost any dish.
I also discovered okra chips and vegetable chips. These are not chips like potato chips they are the actual vegetable seasoned & dehydrated. I have to learn how to make these as they are not cheap to buy.
Fitness Minutes: (39,783)
9/9/12 10:52 A
Fitness Minutes: (30)
1 9/9/12 10:45 A
A holistic doctor who I see for nutrition/well being told me not to add spinach to a smoothie if you are also adding protein powder. Something about the digestion and interference with the 2 . I liked added fresh spinach and thought I was on to a good thing:(
Fitness Minutes: (1,221)
9/9/12 10:12 A
I have been using half a sheet of sushi nori to my smoothies every morning. I don't taste it and it seems to be helping a lot. I am down 10 lbs in 2 weeks and I am not starving myself or working out constantly. Just living day to day and eating much better
There is a theme here - Quinoa, Kale, Black Beans, Greek Yogourt and Steele Cut Oats. Kale in smoothies? I have a friend who throws a handful of spinach in her smoothies. I might try it but it sounds like a very, very odd combination. What is the difference between Quinoa and Couscous? I like both but I prefer Couscous. I forgot about black beans. I love chick peas and lentils. Are they as healthy? Why greek yogourt? How is it different from regular yogourt? I'll take guacomole anyday!
apple sauce instead of margarine in baking; cocoa powder or cinnamon to liven up hot water/coffee instead of sugary things; goji berries.... in cooking, or just a healthy snack!
Fitness Minutes: (103,831)
989 9/8/12 3:27 P
Black beans. Brown rice. Garbanzo beans. Silk Vanilla Soymilk. Fennel. Mangoes. Fiber One bread. Ken's Reduced Fat Creamy Caesar dressing (just watch the portion size!) Al Fresco chicken sausage. Butternut squash. Water, just plain still water.
As far as the Nutella mentioned a few posts back, I wouldn't consider it healthy, per se. However, it can be a smart substitution for a dangerous chocolate fudge indulgence.
Fitness Minutes: (13,575)
871 9/8/12 3:22 P
Quark! I don't remember seeing it in the US, but if you do, get it! It's a very thick dairy product, kind of like if you put cottage cheese and yogurt in a blender. Fat-free Quark has tons of protein, not very many calories, and is thicker than greek yogurt. I use it for everything: mixed with lemon and spices in lasagna, instead of butter on bread, with fruit for something sweet, anything. Germans even make cheesecake out of it!
Fitness Minutes: (15)
9/8/12 3:24 A
Kelp noodles! They're 6 cals/serving, full of nutrients and shockingly yummy. Had them last night in a memorable stir-fry with peas, onions, tofu and shredded carrots. Delish and crazily low-call.
I'm experimenting with shirataki noodles (0 cal, all natural, made from a very fibrous japanese yam) but so far I haven't quite found the right thing to do with them, I think.
everything i eat is healthy, and there are a lot of things to eat. just pay attention to the quantity
Fitness Minutes: (584)
7 9/7/12 11:35 P
1) Kale chips--toss with olive oil spritz and salt, then toast in the oven 2) Steel cut oats--I make a big batch of oats on Sundays, warm a serving in the microwave each morning before work, and then stir into frozen fruit until the fruit warms up. Yum.
Fitness Minutes: (6,830)
37 9/7/12 5:06 P
Dave's Killer Bread, any style.
St. Dalfour's jam for when I just can't shake that sweet tooth. Real fruit, sweetened with fruit juice.
Farmer's market tomatoes.
Fresh ground peanut butter. I wish I could offer a brand name, but my local hippie store sells it in bulk. It's organic and ooey-gooey in all the right ways.
Fitness Minutes: (36,187)
7,846 9/7/12 3:29 P
I try to keep greek yogurt in the frig all the time; adding fruits as needed for desserts. Walnuts and apples are a great mix also; carbs and the protein from nuts for a perfect mix.
Fitness Minutes: (16,008)
224 9/7/12 2:55 P
I use xylitol instead of sugar. I think its better for you, but that all seems to change daily. I've read really good things about it, and its delicious. I like it better than sugar and Agave.
Spinach and Kale are my fav healthy foods because I love them and they can be added to almost anything!
Spaghetti squash is next on the list because I am a girl who loves big portions, and you can eat a lot for very little calories.
Cashews (in moderation) are another fav.
Peppers. Bell, pablanos, jalapenos, red, Anaheim...the list goes on and I cook with them all the time! Chop them up and put them in enchiladas, fajitas, I even put bell peppers in my healthy potato salad recipe. (Yes, it is possible to make potato salad healthy).
Quick cooking oats are really good, and I can add a pinch of brown sugar without feeling too guilty.
I love the roasted seaweed snacks! But then, I like sushi rolls, and they're just toasted, salted nori, so YMMV.
I've been doing the Slow Carb diet lately to bust a plateau I was on (it's working!), and that has forced me to get creative with beans, because it's beans every meal, 6 days per week. I've always liked beans, and kept meaning to use them more often and find more recipes for them, but Slow Carb is forcing me to do that.
My new favorite is to make a bean salad with black eyed peas, veggies (celery, bell pepper, onion, cherry tomato) and a very light vinaigrette. It keeps great in the fridge and I can eat it by itself, with tuna mixed in for a lunch, over lettuce as a salad, and so on. I could probably even make it into a soup a the end of the week if I wanted to. Also, it turns out that black eyed peas are sold in the freezer section, and these do not require soaking, unlike dried, and do not have all the sodium in the canned beans.
Puy lentils are also surprisingly versatile and cook quickly. They retain their shape, so they're good for salads. Mixed with some tuna and veggies and Greek yogurt, they make a complete and very high-protein meal. I never knew how many kinds of lentils there were until this year, but they're all nutritionally great and have different uses.
Fitness Minutes: (8,611)
1,720 9/7/12 1:40 P
Kale in my smoothies, yummm
Fitness Minutes: (35,110)
9/7/12 11:54 A
Garbanzo beans. They're sooooo good. I've also 'discovered' celery. Yummy!
Fitness Minutes: (9,702)
49 9/7/12 11:43 A
Black beans are my new favorite! I'll have them w/ salsa & low-cal cheese.
I have them w/ turkey or any other main dish. I buy the canned kind, but learned that rinsing them off prior to cooking gets rid of extra/un-needed sodium.
Guacamole instead of salad dressing, roasting a whole chicken because it's so cheap and easy,dill as seasoning, balsamic vinegar.
9/7/12 10:01 A
Over the last couple years:
Kale - My favorite way to prepare it is braised with olive oil, sauteed onions, red pepper flakes, & a small amount of liquid, then added to whole grain spaghetti & topped with pecorino. Usually I just eat it vegetarian, but it's also fantastic with a small amount of pancetta or sausage. The combination of earthy/bitter/sweet/salty flavors is amazing. This is one of my favorite cold-weather meals.
Sardines - They sound scary, but once I bit the bullet & tried them I couldn't believe how much I loved them. The cheapest ones are a bit unappetizing, but the slightly more expensive ones that are either deboned or filleted so you can easily pull out the spine are so worth the extra $0.75 or so. I like these best with pasta too, from a simple addition of lemon, garlic & toasted breadcrumbs to going all out & adding a ton of sauteed sweet peppers, cherry tomatoes, & greens. They're cheap, can live on your shelf for months, & so so healthy for you; a great inexpensive, sustainable fatty-fish alternative to tuna & salmon.
Avocado - I avoided this for a long time for some reason (texture issue?) but a friend's excellent guacamole got me to change my mind. I'm still not a huge guacamole fan, but I love this sliced into fish tacos (one of my other obsessions this past summer).
Quinoa - I was late on this train, but now I'm using it instead of orzo or couscous as a side to simply prepared fish. Makes nice grain salads for taking to work too. I just wish I could figure out how to cook it in the microwave without disaster.
Air-popped popcorn - A great snack to munch on when you want something crunchy & you can eat so, so much of it for so few calories. All I add is a sprinkle of sea salt, perfect for those monthly salt cravings.
Fitness Minutes: (21,299)
552 9/7/12 9:52 A
A protein-loaded food that is "on the bandwagon" is Greek yogurt. I buy Fage 0%, and mix it with bananas and raisins and cinnamon.
I'm also cooking more with black beans and ground skinless turkey breast. Yum!
Fitness Minutes: (4,601)
577 9/7/12 8:23 A
Last season I discovered Cara Cara Oranges
They have a low-acid content
"Cara Cara oranges, a type of navel orange grown in California's San Joaquin Valley, are available December through April. The bright orange exterior of Cara Cara oranges is similar to other navels, but their interior is a distinctive pinkish red, has an exceptionally sweet flavor with a tangy cranberry-like zing, and they’re seedless. Cara Caras, a cross between the Washington navel and the Brazilian Bahia navel, were first discovered in 1976 at Hacienda Cara Cara in Venezuela."
Fitness Minutes: (35,554)
9/7/12 8:02 A
Tofu. We've been eating it for a few months now, and I am really surprised that my husband and I liked it! I have to cook it certain ways so it's not 'squishy,' but there is so much you can do with it and it's low in calories and high in protein.
Fitness Minutes: (22,499)
518 9/7/12 8:01 A
Whole vegetables and fruits are really healthy and good for you!
"Fructose lowers your levels of the two hunger-control hormones (insulin and leptin) and increases your "I'm hungry" hormone (ghrelin). Fructose also interferes with your body's ability to absorb blood sugar (hello, diabetes) and encourages the buildup of lousy LDL cholesterol in your arteries."