Monthly Archives: January 2015

DIY: Carne Asada Fries On The Slim

DSC00319 with watermarkOne of my all time favorite meals is Carne Asada fries, and I have been known to cheat on my diet and get them occasionally late at night for a salty snack. This is terrible advice for someone trying to lose weight, so I don’t recommend you follow my example. My bad habits aside, they can make a very delicious meal when made right. If you’ve never had them before, let me give you a brief description of their incredible deliciousness.

Picture steak fries topped with fresh tomatoes, guacamole, sour cream, cheese, green onions and tender strips of marinated beef. It’s quite possibly perfection in a meal. The combination of crisp fries, creamy guacamole, fresh tomatoes and green onions is amazing. Unfortunately, like most delectable food items, this dish is not for the diet savvy individual. Lucky for you, I am not one to give up easily, and have come up with my healthy version of this masterpiece.

The first secret is to make your own fries that are baked, not fried. This recipe for Guiltless Homemade Fries works perfect. The next step is to make your own guacamole. This will make sure it’s fresh and doesn’t contain any unwanted preservatives. This Chunky Guacamole Dip recipe is the one I prefer. Regarding the meat, find the leanest steak you can and marinate it well to ensure flavor and tenderness. Finish things off with fresh tomatoes and green onions, low fat sour cream, and a small portion of shredded cheese. When all is said and done, you’ll have an amazing meal that is much better than they serve at restaurants, with a fraction of the calories.

BMI Calculator and Diet Weight Tracker Tool

bmi calculatorWhen you start a weight loss program, it’s important to have a way to track your progress. One great way is to calculate your BMI. This helps you understand your body’s composition before you begin. Another way is to mark your starting weight and set a goal weight to work towards. DietTools is here to help with both of these. We have provided a free BMI calculator and Diet Weight Tracker Tool that will help you track your progress all the way.

Body Mass Index (BMI) is a number calculated from a person’s weight and height. BMI provides a reliable indicator of body fatness for most people and is used to screen for weight categories that may lead to health problems. With our Body Mass Index Calculator you can identify possible weight problems. However, the BMI calculator is not a diagnostic tool. For example, a person may have a high BMI. However, to determine if excess weight is a health risk, a healthcare provider would need to perform further assessments. These assessments might include skin fold thickness measurements, evaluations of diet, physical activity, family history, and other appropriate health screenings.The correlation between the BMI number and body fatness is fairly strong; however the correlation varies by sex, race, and age. Keep all these factors in mind when interpreting your BMI calculation.

The Diet Weight  Tracker Tool helps you keep track of your weight loss and your progress toward your weight goal. To fully maximize the benefit to you, the user, enter your new information daily. This tool uses color codes to document your daily progress and displays your progress in an easy-to-view chart and table. Besides the weight loss progress chart, this tool uses your personal data to calculate average daily & weekly weight loss rates.

diet weight tracker

Motivation Monday: Minute to Win It

Happy Monday!

This past week I read an article about how those who sit for more than 8 hours a day are more likely to end up in the hospital due to illness and have a lower mortality rate. For so many people, sitting is how we spend most of our day. Many of us have office jobs. We sit while we entertain ourselves in front of the television. We sit in our cars as we drive from one location to another.  However, it was also found that adding 10 minutes of standing or walking every hour or so made a big difference in the long run.

This week, get up and get moving. Every hour or so get up from your desk and take a quick walk around the office. Find ways to fit in standing and walking during your lunch break. Get off a bus stop early and walk a little extra to work. Every minute you add standing up is a win for your health!

Ready to get some extra movement in after parking at the back of the parking lot.

Ready to get some extra movement in after parking at the back of the parking lot.

If you are already pretty active during the day, try adding ten minutes to your workout. Add some minutes of physical activity to your days this week and know you’re doing something good for your body.

Eating On Time

Food clockMost of us worry about what we eat more often than when we eat. Most of us have heard that it’s best not to eat after 7. I’ve always thought this was a rule that would help us lose weight. But, it seems that there’s more to it than that. Researchers at the Regulatory Biology Laboratory in the Salt Institute say that “Daily fasting of 12 to 15 hours also allows the gut, liver and muscle to repair and rejuvenate by breaking down harmful chemicals and metabolic byproducts.”

The researchers believe that this information is a step in understanding diseases like diabetes and cancer as well.

So, before you go for that midnight snack you may want to think again. Eating on schedule will help your health as much as it will help your weight!

 

DietTools ” My Journal” Resource

holiday runDiet and Exercise is a very personal thing, and it’s something that involves emotions, motivation, past experiences, fear and hope. Whether you’re a active or inactive person naturally, it’s always good to have a place where you can keep track of how you’re feeling, frustrations or accomplishments you might have, and track your progress. To help with this, DietTools has created a place where you can keep journal entries, including pictures and videos if you’d like.

Once you’re logged on, open a journal entry and write about how you’re feeling that day. If you have an awesome run, write it down so you can remember it. If you’re having a really hard day and want to vent, this is the perfect place. If you went on an amazing hike, upload a picture and write about it. A journal can help you cope, see your progress, and share thoughts with other members of DietTools.

If you haven’t signed up for DietTools yet, join us today!

Motivation Monday: Exercise for Life

Running in the rainHappy Monday!

I have been thinking a lot about this question over the past few days:

What if I made exercise a non-negotiable part of my day?

There are two other things I do for my body everyday are that non-negotiable. Eat and sleep. Granted, I have to do these things or else I will not function. However, what if I was able to adopt the mindset that without exercising, I will not function as well either? We read all the time how exercise can improve all aspects of our lives. It makes us stronger, purges our bodies of toxins, it helps keep our hearts healthy, it improves our mood. I could go on with all the benefits there are to exercise.

So often, exercise is looked at as something that is optional. We think, “If I have time today, I’ll go to the gym.” When the day is winding down, and we realize that workout at the gym isn’t going to happen more often than not we sit down and relax on the couch rather than pulling out that dusty old workout DVD and do a quick 10 minute workout. Not only do we look at exercise as optional, but we exercise frequently with the goal to lose weight. Sometimes, when our goals aren’t achieved as soon as we wanted it becomes difficult to do the work that will accomplish those goals. But what if you could learn to love the process of exercise?

“Fall in love with the process and the results will come.” -Eric Thomas

My motivation for you this week is to learn to love the process. Ask yourself: “How would my life change if I made exercise a non-negotiable part of my day?”

Fess Up Friday: January Jumpstart Check In

january jumpstartIt’s half way through the January Jumpstart Challenge, and time to check in. Have you signed up for the challenge? If no, do so today! If you’re already part of the challenge, have you been taking advantage of our free tools?  These are designed to help you keep track of what you eat, how many calories it costs, how much you exercise, and how  many calories you burn. Keeping track of everything that goes in and everything that goes out is the best way to get in shape.

If you’ve signed up and logged your food and exercise, have you checked out all the links we have for recipes, workouts and articles? These can help you make healthy meals, try new exercises and learn more about healthy and nutrition.

Last, but not least, have you printed our workout calendar and cheat sheet? You can find these through our January Jumpstart Challenge page, and they are great resources for working out. The calendar tells you exactly what exercises to do each day, and the cheat sheet shows you how to perform each exercise. We’ve taken out all the guesswork in working out.

By taking advantage of these incredible tools as part of our challenge, you could be one of the lucky winners of a free Jumpstarter Kit, t-shirt or water bottle.

 

Exercise Calorie Calculator and Exercise Tracker

calorie calculatorLast week we talked about the Food Database and Calorie Tracker which help you keep track of all the food that goes in your body. Although diet is a huge part of a healthy lifestyle, exercise is another key component that deserves your attention. This is why Diet Tools has also created an Exercise Tracker and Exercise Calorie Counter that does all the work for you.

DietTools Exercise Tracker: This helps you track your daily exercise and fitness activity. Just enter the type and duration of exercise, and the tracker will put it into an easy-to-read chart. It will keep track of how many days a week you exercise, which type of exercise you do, how long you exercise, and how many calories you burn. Our user-friendly charts are just what you need to keep you on track!

DietTools Exercise Calorie Calculator: Ever wonder how many calories you can burn doing a certain exercise? The Diet Tools Exercise Calorie Counter is here to help! Simply enter your age, sex, height, weight, type and duration of exercise, and it will tell you how many calories you burn.

By using all of our tools to keep track of your food and exercise, you can really start to work on your weight loss goals. Simply log in each day, enter what you ate and how much you exercised, and you’ll be able to see if you are above or below your daily allotted caloric intake. If you’re above, you should probably cut back on some food or add some more exercise. If you’re below, you should start seeing some weight loss results. Become a member of DietTools.com today and start taking advantage of all these tools.

exercise tracker

Motivation Monday: Calorie Counting

Happy Monday once again!

One of the first steps in losing weight and eating a healthier diet is becoming aware of your current habits. Keeping a food journal and counting calories can be a real eye-opening experience. The first time I began tracking calories, I remember reading the label on a can of my favorite chili and realizing that a 1 cup serving had over 400 calories! I’m not even going to mention how much fat and sodium were in it. Counting calories and reading labels on food can help you have a better understanding of what you are putting in your body, and if you really are making the best food choices.

A little tip when shopping: read the nutrition label! Just because it says “high fiber,” “whole grain,” or “all natural” does not necessarily equate to being healthy. Take a look at how much sugar is in that whole grain cereal.

Depending on how you do it, counting calories can be a daunting task. If you keep in mind that this is a tool to help you make healthier choices, it can be helpful. If you focus your entire day around documenting every thing you put in your mouth it can feel binding.  If you’re just starting to count calories, begin with a simple food journal. Write down what you eat during the day and the portion size. When you sign up for DietTools.com, there is a Food Calorie Counter tool where you can enter in what you’ve eaten and see how many calories you consumed. Becoming aware each day of the foods you should probably cut out or eat in smaller portions can help you make better decisions the next day.

Don’t get discouraged! If you go over your calories one day, remember that this is a learning experience. Do better the next day. Once you become familiar with how many calories are in the different foods you’re consuming, you can enter the foods throughout the day and strive to stay in the correct range.

You can make healthy changes in your diet! Good luck!

The Sexy Side of Oats

mascarpone and blueberry muffinsOf all the healthy foods there are around the world, I think oats tend to get overlooked. They’re not colorful, flashy, hard to find, or exotic. Most of us know they’re around, but I don’t think they get the recognition they deserve. If you’re looking for an inexpensive, easy to fix, highly nutritious and versatile health food, give oats a second glance. You just might be surprised by what you find. In honor of this under appreciated health food, I want to share three healthy, delicious and very filling oat recipes for you to try.

 

 

 

The first is a Coconut Blueberry Muffin recipe that includes quick oats, coconut, fresh blueberries, pecans, and a couple of bananas to create sweet, filling, crunchy and very healthy muffins. The second is a recipe for Crockpot Steel Cut Oats. Until a few years back I had never heard of steel cut oats. I tried some cooked by a friend of mine and I was hooked. They have the  natural flavor of oats with an added crunchy and nutty side that is completely addictive. Because they’re more dense than regular oats, they take longer to cook, but with this crockpot recipe, you can make them in no time and enjoy them when they’re ready.

 

The last recipe is a favorite of mine that I make at least 3 times a month. In fact, I made it just lats night for dinner. The recipe makes Oatmeal Cinnamon Waffles and I have to say they are my favorite waffles in the entire world. I don’t like light and fluffy waffles, so these fit the bill. They are thick and dense with just the right amount of sweetness. Top the with bananas and walnuts, fresh berries and cream, pure maple syrup, or anything else you like. The waffles are so full of hearty oats and whole wheat, they’ll fill you up fast.