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Lean Green Food Finds

17 Mar

Lean Green Food Finds

Disclaimer: I have a financial relationship with and was paid to represent the products in this blog post and associated TV segment.

With St. Patrick’s Day upon us, you may have Irish-inspired menu ideas on the brain. But when it comes to green food fare, your food choices can also be good for the planet. Here are my top picks for some lean, green food finds:

KIND: Simplified, Sustainable Ingredients

KIND

  • Looking to simplify your life? Why not start with your ingredient list! The shorter an ingredient list is, generally the more clean and wholesome the food will be.
  • KIND bars are packed with simple wholesome ingredients you can see and pronounce – not to mention they do not contain genetically engineered ingredients.
  • KIND Nuts & Spices have 5 grams of sugar or less per bar with no artificial ingredients or sugar alcohols, so they’re a bar you can feel good about eating.
  • To learn more check out www.kindsnacks.com

Pistachios: Eating Local…and Loaded with Lutein!

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  • Pistachios are an excellent option when it comes to nutrition and health; pistachios are among the lowest fat and lowest calorie snack nut out there. They’re packed with protein and fiber which help you stay full for longer.
  • Did you know the hint of green in pistachios comes from antioxidants like lutein?
  • If you’re trying to make an environmental impact by eating locally, pistachios are a great option. Over 99% of all pistachios grown in the US are from California
  • Wonderful pistachios come in a variety of delicious flavors like salt and pepper and sweet chili and a serving size of 49 pistachios has just 160 calories (1/2 cup in shell or ¼ cup out of shell)
  • For more information check out www.getcrackin.com

good2grow: BPA-Free for Me!

good2grow-healthy-juice-drink

  • Good2Grow Fruit & Veggie Blends & Juicy Waters are a great way to quench your kids’ thirst without artificial colors, flavors or preservatives.
  • All of the good2grow products are non-GMO, the bottles are recyclable and the tops are BPA-free.
  • The good2grow character sippa-top containers are reusable, which cuts down on waste seen with other disposable water and juice bottles.
  • For more information check out www.good2grow.com

Lowering Your Food-Based Carbon Footprint

  • Climate friendly foods favor plants over animals; if all Americans eliminated just ¼ pound serving of beef per week, reduction in global warming gas emissions would be equivalent to taking 4-6 million cars off the road
  • When selecting seafood, choose locally caught, sustainably managed fish or herbivorous farmed stocks like tilapia, catfish and carp. Check out www.seafoodwatch.org for sustainable seafood selections
  • Buying organic is another great way to positively impact your environment; organic production means the food is free from pesticides, herbicides, drugs, fertilizers and genetic modification

For these and other lean, green food finds, check out my segment on San Diego Living at: http://www.cw6sandiego.com/lean-green-and-eco-eats/

Turn Your Tailgate UP

28 Oct

Turn Your Tailgate UP

Disclosure: I have a professional relationship with Wonderful Pistachios & Almonds and KIND Snacks; however, this post is not sponsored by them.

Football season is in full swing – and that means tailgating food is in high demand.

According to one survey, when it comes to tailgating food:

  • 42% of tailgaters spend more than $500 a season on food and supplies
  • 95% of tailgaters prepare their food at the stadium
  • And good old-fashioned math tells us that a 13-ounce bag of Doritos has 1,820 calories

If you’re hosting a parking lot party or just game-watching at home, chances are you are filling up on not-so-good-for-you foods.

But I have 2 top picks this season to help fix your football food fails!

KIND Bars

KIND

  • I love working with KIND snacks because their products include real ingredients like premium nuts, whole grains and seeds
  • The KIND Nuts & Spices line has 50% less sugar compared to the average snack bar
  • Whereas your typical slab bar can have 20-30 g sugar per bar, KIND Nuts & Spices has just 5-6 grams per bar
  • There are no artificial sweeteners and the sugar in these bars comes from dried fruit and honey

Check out KIND’s Nuts & Spices and all of their bars at the KIND online store.

Pistachios

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  • Pistachios make a great go-to snack for any football watching party. They’re a good source of protein and fiber and come packed with good fats. In fact, almost 90% of the fats in pistachios are the healthy, unsaturated type.
  • I love pistachios because they are one of the lowest-fat, lowest-calorie snack nuts. In-shell pistachios can keep your hands busy during those nerve-wracking parts of the game – and the leftover shells provide a visual due for portion sizing.
  • Pistachios are delicious on their own, roasted and salted – or try them in other delectable flavors like sweet chili and salt and pepper.
  • A serving size of pistachios is 49 pistachios, which provides 160 calories and 3 grams of fiber; 49 pistachios works out to 1/2 cup of pistachios in shell or 1/4 cup shelled

You can learn more at getcrackin.com.

For more healthier twists on football tailgating, check out my segment on KRON4 San Francisco this week.

Healthy Holiday Tips & Tricks

29 Dec

Healthy Holiday Tips & Tricks

With New Year’s upon us, the holiday entertaining season is still in full swing. And if you’re like most Americans, you can expect to gain 1-2 pounds this holiday season.

But good news: you don’t have to be just another heavy holiday statistic! If you want to Beat the Creep this year, check out these simple tips for curbing holiday weight gain:

Follow the “Rule of Ones”

  • If a holiday party buffet is about to ruin your day, follow the rule of ones: grab one appetizer, one main dish, one side, and one dessert.
  • With the rule of ones you have to make your choices matter. Start out strong by amplifying your appetizers: pump up flavor & spice, not salt and fat.
  • This holiday season I am loving the convenience of Bibigo Korean BBQ Sauces & their fully cooked Chicken & Cilantro Wontons. Pair the 2 together for a tasty, convenient appetizer packed with authentic Korean BBQ flavor that won’t break your calorie budget.

“Three Bites: Now Say Good Night”

  • Attack that holiday meal by following the three-bite rule: the first bite is the best, the last is to savor, and one in between is for good measure.
  • Be a smart stocking stuffer with savory and sweet treats in bite-size, calorie controlled portions which help you satisfy without overindulging.
  • My favorite tasty treat this holiday season is the Dark Chocolate Mocha Almond KIND bar – it’s packed with ingredients you can see and pronounce, and only has 5 grams of added sugar!

Power Up with Protein in Peanuts

  • Fiber and protein are the 2 nutrients that help keep you full – and peanuts have a great combination of both; with 7 grams of protein per serving, peanuts have more protein than any other nut.
  • Everyone leaves Santa cookies, but why not also pack him some peanuts to power his present delivering through the night?
  • For a delectable and protein packed treat, check out this great gluten free Ultra Peanut Butter Cookie recipe from the National Peanut Board

For these and other healthy holiday tips, check out my recent segment on NBC 7 San Diego.

Sponsored Post Disclosure: I was compensated for product mention in this post & TV segment – thoughts & opinions are my own.

Peanuts: A Food to Take to Heart

15 Feb

Peanuts: A Food to Take to Heart

February is American Heart Month. And what better time to focus on a heart-healthy food that doesn’t always get a lot of press: peanuts.

A Harvard study published last year found that people who ate a handful of nuts every day lived longer, healthier lives than those who did not eat nuts.

While peanuts are not technically nuts (they’re legumes), peanuts were recommended by the study findings, and they are recognized by the American Heart Association as being a heart-healthy food.

Nut Nutrition

A serving of peanuts is one-ounce, which is a small handful, or about 40 peanuts (or 2T peanut butter) and 160 calories:

  • Peanuts have more protein per ounce (7g) than any other nuts
  • They contain over 30 essential vitamins and nutrients
  • 12 of the 14 g total fat in peanuts come from heart-healthy unsaturated fatty acids
  • 40 peanuts contains 2.5 g dietary fiber, or 10% of your daily value for fiber.

I love pairing peanuts in sauces with noodles and tofu for a satiating blend of carbohydrate, fat, protein, and fiber. Here’s a great Peanut Noodles with Tofu recipe from Sunset Magazine.

For more peanut recipes, check out the National Peanut Board’s Recipe page. To learn more about peanut nutrition, see my National Peanut Board Heart-to-Heart blog post from this week here.

 

Almonds: A Satiating Snack

9 Oct

Almonds: A Satiating Snack

Satiety is certainly on the nutrition radar these days.

The word satiety refers to a food’s ability to keep you full. For people interested in weight loss or weight management, staying full – without overeating – is always a nutrition goal.

A new study out this week shows that almonds might be a most satiating snack choice.

The study was published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition and looked at the effect of including almonds in the diet of 137 adult participants who were at increased risk for developing type 2 diabetes.

Study participants were randomized into 1 of 5 groups:

  • A control group that avoided all nuts and seeds
  • Breakfast meal group with 1.5 ounces almonds
  • Lunch meal group with 1.5 ounces almonds
  • Morning snack group with 1.5 ounces almonds between meals
  • Afternoon snack group with 1.5 ounces almonds between meals

What the researchers found was that after consuming approximately 250 additional calories per day from the almonds, those who ate almonds between or even with meals did not increase the total number of calories they are or drank throughout the day. Plus they didn’t gain weight over the course of the 4-week study.

Now of course there are lots of other things that could have been going on with the participants, not to mention the sample size of the study was small and duration of study was short. Despite these limitations, the data does indicate that almonds make a good, satiating snack choice – as do other foods that contain fat, fiber, and protein…the components of foods that keep us most satiated.

One serving of almonds is about 23 almonds, contains 13 g of unsaturated fat and only 1 g of saturated fat along with 3 grams of dietary fiber and 6 grams of protein.

To learn more about almond nutrition, check out the Almond Board of California’s Nutrition and Research page.