Monthly Archives: October 2014

Rake in the Fitness Rewards by Raking Leaves

Fall leaves with rakeFall is a great time of year to burn a few extra calories outside working in the yard. There are a handful of simple things you can do that will clean up your card and hep you stay in shape. Here are the top 5 ways you can rake up your fitness rewards this fall.

1. Rake leaves: 30 minutes of raking leaves can burn as many as 100 calories.

2. Re-paint your house:  Adding a new layer of paint on the outside of your house can burn 300 calories in one hour.

3. Mow the yard: Hand mowing the yard for an hour equals around 300 calories.

4. Sweep outside: Sweeping the sidewalk for an hour can burn over 200 calories.

5. Clean the gutters: Cleaning out your gutters equals around 200 calories an hour.




Win Cash with our Pumpkin and Costume Contests

2014-10-27-Costume-FB-PostHalloween is soon approaching and there’s so much excitement in the air about decorating pumpkins, visiting haunted houses and picking the perfect Halloween costume. Fun and anticipation is everywhere, and we wanted to get in on the action. This month we’re hosting two separate photo contests, each with a $200 prize for the winner!

The first is a Pumpkin Photo Contest where you enter a picture of your favorite painted, carved, or otherwise decorated pumpkin for a chance to win some serious money. Enter as many times as you like, and make sure to encourage your friends to vote.

The second is a Halloween Costume Contest where you enter a picture of your favorite scary, silly, or most unique costume. The winner will also receive $200 plus a free DietTools t-shirt! You can enter more than one picture, so get going!

You can find both contests on our DietTools facebook page. Good luck!

pumpkin contest

Diet Challenge #27: Trick-or-Treat Part 2

Of course this week’s Diet Challenge has to evolve around the “treat” part of trick-or-treating!challenge_wk_27-02

The Challenge

Opt for healthy Halloween treats rather than candy.

The Details

Read this to learn how to do Halloween the Healthy Way. Then try some of our favorite healthy Halloween treats:
Espresso Chocolate Spider Cupcake
Butternut Melted Witch Soup
Goofy Tooth Apples

Fitness Challenge #27: Trick-or-Treat Part 1

Fitness Challenge #27 is going to be fun! We’re so excited to hear about your fitness tricks!

The Challenge

Take on some Halloween fitness moves this week!

The Details

We’ve decided to have fun this week by creating an original Kids’ Halloween Workout that you can do right along with them. It’ll work your body out too!

Also, why not try a fun Halloween Scavenger Hunt to burn off some of those calories from candy?

My Top 5 Quick Breakfast Ideas

Delicious breakfast with coffee, egg and oatmealWhen I wake up in the morning, the last thing I want is spend a lot of time making a big breakfast. Over the years I’ve come up with a handful of quick breakfast ideas that are delicious and filling. Here are my Top 5 Quick Breakfast Ideas:

1. 2 Hard boiled eggs and a banana

2. Traditional oats with brown sugar

3. Breakfast smoothie and a piece of toast with peanut butter

4. Granola with almond milk

5. Burrito with eggs, fresh tomatoes and avocado

Bacon and Green Onion Mashed Potatoes

I love mashed potatoes. From the time I was a little girl it was one of my favorite foods. I always thought of mashed potatoes as one of those meals where you can’t really mess it up. Then I tried making it just following what I remember my mom doing. They were terrible and dry. I failed miserably. I had mashed potatoes at my in-laws one time, and they were really good. I watched how they did it…by adding an entire stick of butter! Yum, but not so friendly for the waistline. Also by the time you add the gravy to it, the calories are way overboard.

Last night, I made Bacon and Green Onion Mashed Potatoes. I know, your probably thinking: Bacon? Can that really be healthy? Well, overall the recipe is pretty low on calories and there isn’t much bacon in there at all. Its just a small sprinkling on the top. The real flavor comes from the green onions and garlic.
bacon and green onion mashed potatoes
The recipe calls for half and half, but I just used all low-fat milk for that and the milk portion. It turned out great. Also, a lot of calories are saved by using the chicken stock.
I really liked this recipe because it cuts out on calories without sacrificing flavor. In fact, the flavor was better than regular mashed potatoes. My entire family loved it! This is definitely a dish we’ll be making again.

Diet Challenge #26: Corn vs. Candy Corn

This month marks the beginning of the holiday season (at least in the stores). They are packed with all kinds of tempting fall sweets and treats. We couldn’t help but notice the other day all the different types of candy corn you can buy. Luckily, it’s also a great season to buy corn. We thought it would be fun to give you all a challenge that has you trying corn in as many different ways as there are candy corn.

The Challenge

Try some of our healthy corn recipes on DietTools!

The Details

Corn and Beef Chili
Corn and Potato Chicken Soup
Vegan Cornbread
Corn Stuffing Muffins
Baked Cream Corn Muffins

Fitness Challenge #26: Corn Maze


The Challenge

Do a corn maze!

The Details

Between corn mazes, apple picking and breath-taking autumn colors this is a great time of year for Fall Family Fitness! This week we encourage you to get the entire family together for some Corn Maze Family Fitness and maybe start your day out with one of these Healthy Fall Breakfast Ideas.

“Big Balls Bonanza” For Dinner Tonight

Healthy eatingThis past summer we made it a tradition to watch Wipeout as a family, so we decided to do something fun for the season finale tournament of champions. In the show, they have a thing called “Big Balls Bonanza” where contestants have to run and try to jump across massive inflated red balls. The jingle they play with this obstacle is very catchy, so we’ve begun saying it as a family. In anticipation of the final episode, we decided to make a “Big Balls” themed dinner.

Today I went to the store and bought baby sweet tomatoes, blueberries, baby round red potatoes, round pork dumplings (from our local Asian market), and round custard filled sweet bau rolls (also from the Asian market). I also bought carrot sticks which resembled some of the swinging poles that knock contestants in the water. Our dinner started off with appetizers of fruits and veggies, then ended with roasted potatoes, dumplings and rolls.

By using the blueberries, tomatoes and carrots as parts of the show, we got my daughter to eat more vegetables and fruits in one sitting than I think she ever has. By the time we go to the potatoes, dumplings and rolls, she was almost full with the healthiest part of the meal. The moral of this story goes as follows: Sometimes you can get your kids to eat more healthy food if there’s a fun theme to go along with it.

Can Genetic Testing Really Help You Lose Weight?

Human cell into biomedical scientific laboratory.Have you heard of this? Genetic testing that will give you a so called manual on what your body needs to lose weight?

You’ll know what to do for exercise,  what to eat, and what supplements your body needs to lose weight.

“It is literally the blueprint for your life,” said Kurt Johnsen, co-founder of Dallas-based Simplified Genetics. He says by doing a full sequence genetic analysis, it takes the guesswork out of trying to get fit.

The cost is $500. You simply swab your mouth. Send the swab to their lab, and they’ll send you the results.

But some are warning to beware of these types of labs.

Ann Simmons is a genetic counselor at Baylor Dallas. She isn’t speaking specifically of Simplified Genetics, but Simmons urges caution saying

“There is hope with genetic testing, but we are still in the infancy stages of what we can tell you from your results,”

If you’ve tried this type of genetic testing. Leave a comment, we’d love to hear about your results!