Happy Thanksgiving, or to be more politically correct, Happy Turkey Day! What a wonderful day it is today, a day full of food and spending time with friends and family. Here is a little fun fact about Turkey Day, many Americans believe that it all started with the Pilgrims and Native Americans at Plymouth, Massachusetts but evidence shows that it was being celebrated by Spaniards in Florida as early as 1565 making this the 445th anniversary.
Many of us consider Thanksgiving to be a day when it is perfectly acceptable to eat as much as we can for as long as we can and then just sit and let euphoria take over. A day when we have an endless supply of food with endless amounts of people to share it with, and if you are lucky like I have been in the past you actually have a couple of Turkey Day meals ahead of you. However there are some people who choose to not give into all their urges and remain healthy eaters today.
Today’s infographic is for those of you who dare not over eat and want to make sure your calorie count does not go over what it is supposed to be. Although some of you, who are like me and will eat until you can eat no more, may find this infographic to be entertaining and perhaps it will help you out in the gym tomorrow. This infographic provides us with serving sizes, time it will take to work something off and shows that Americans, on average, will eat 1600 calories at their Thanksgiving meal today. [via]
via Kim Mueller – Active
‘Tis the season for holiday feasts, a calendar packed with holiday parties, and weather that can diminish our motivation to train. In November and December we’re faced with every culinary temptation imaginable, which makes it difficult to maintain peak fitness.
In fact, it’s common for some to pack on five to 10 pounds of body fat onto their normally “cut” athletic bodies during the holiday season, which can compromise performance at winter races and make for a slow return to peak form in the spring.
Fortunately, the situation is far from hopeless. It’s possible to enjoy all the festivities–including the special foods that help make the season so enjoyable. Read on to learn about 10 nutrition and fitness strategies that will help you maintain peak fitness during the holiday season.
1. Eat four to six smaller meals rather than “saving” yourself for that special holiday meal
Do you honestly think you can resist the smell of a holiday kitchen when you’re starving? Chances aren’t too favorable. Not only do smaller, more frequent meals enhance metabolic activity (meaning you burn more calories during the day), your less likely to binge on those holiday treats.
To help curb your appetite before a party, choose to snack on “heavy” foods or those that contain a high water content like broth-based soups, fruits and vegetables. Appetite-control researchers have found that your brain may monitor how much you eat based on the weight of your food. One study discovered that people automatically stop eating when they consume a particular weight of food, regardless of the amount of fat or calories.
If the food was light, but high in calories, study participants could easily consume 1,000 calories without feeling satisfied. But they stopped eating heavier low-calorie foods after just a few hundred calories. For example, for 300 calories, you could either have a couple handfuls of chips or five oranges. So instead of eating lightweight foods like chips, crackers, rice cakes and popcorn to curb your appetite, choose heavier foods like fruits and vegetables.
2. Plan a workout before a holiday party or big meal
Why not use all those scrumptious holiday foods as recovery from a hard run or bicycle ride? In the one or two hours after intense exercise, our bodies are more sensitive to the hormone insulin, which helps transport sugars to our depleted muscles. All those precious carbohydrates found in starchy holiday dishes like mashed potatoes, or sugars found in cranberry sauce or pumpkin pie are excellent for glycogen replenishment. And the protein you’ll get from that holiday turkey meal will help repair damaged tissue. Furthermore, our metabolism is heightened after a hard effort, meaning we’re more effective at burning those little “indulgences” that may otherwise pack on the unwanted weight for upcoming training.
3. In contrast to our “sports mentality” to pick up the pace, when eating, SLOW DOWN!
If you’re competitive by nature, you may be inclined to “hurry” your meals. Unfortunately, you won’t win a medal by eating fast and you’ll make it even harder to win one at your next race with those additional pounds slowing your pace. It takes at least 20 minutes for our brains to signal that we’re actually full, which means a slow eater will consume less calories before feeling full than someone who races through their meal. So rather than attempting to finish your plate first, see if you can outlast the competition by being the last to finish.
4. Remember the law of diminishing returns
Doesn’t the first bite always taste the best? When looking at brain chemicals signaling “pleasure,” scientists have found that we receive less pleasure the more we eat of a food. So rather than feeling like you must eat a full serving of every dessert at a holiday meal, take a bite or two and receive 90 percent of the pleasure at 10 percent of the calories.
via fANNtastic food
These taste like normal mashed potatoes, but there are a few secret ingredients. Not only is the nutrition amped up with equal parts mashed cauliflower (you seriously don’t even taste it), but there’s also added protein and fiber from a can of cannellini beans, too!
Healthy Mashed Potatoes
(Serves 6 to 8 as a side)
- 1 large head cauliflower
- 4 medium/large potatoes, or an equal amount smaller sized
- Fresh or dried rosemary
- 1 15 oz. can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- 3/4 tsp. garlic powder
- Salt & pepper to taste
- Optional variation: 1/2 C skim/low fat milk
1) Slice potatoes into small pieces, chop cauliflower. Put in a large pot full of boiling water; add in a couple sprigs fresh (or a few shakes dry) rosemary and a pinch of salt and pepper. Boil until soft.
2) Drain potatoes and cauliflower; let cool for a few minutes. In a large bowl, use an immersion blender (or mash by hand, or use a blender) to blend together potatoes, cauliflower, and beans.
3) Add the garlic powder, a few more shakes of dried rosemary, salt and pepper to taste, and milk, if desired. Mix and enjoy! Serve warm.
When broken into 7 servings, each serving contains:
- 211 calories, 0.6g fat, 44g carbs, 9.3g fiber, 47mg sodium, 0.9g sugar, 10.3g protein. Not too shabby! Lots of fiber and protein, and it’s also very high in potassium, Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, and more.
Waking up and getting the day started is one of the toughest parts of the day. Everything you have to do is jumbled and floating around in your head. You want nothing more than to just stay in bed. But you can’t because you have a life and people that depend on you. It’s bad enough that you have responsibilities, but you have to dress nice too? I don’t know about you all, but picking clothes in the morning is one of the most frustrating things about starting my day.
We want to do it all. We want to feel energized from our morning exercise. We want to actually get a decent breakfast in. And we want to look good for the day to come. Often striving for these things is what keeps people from being the “morning person” that so many hate at work. Whether we admit it or not we are jealous of the morning people. We envy their positivity and the ease in which they handle the start to their day.
Planning ahead is what is going to get us there. In this infographic, we are shown a few tips and tricks to making the new day a better and easier one. Organizing your thoughts will help you visualize how to efficiently achieve your to-do’s. Doing something that’s going to make you feel good about yourself is a must in the morning. Make yourself a routine to ensure you can be a happier and more successful you. [via]
Thanksgiving is just around the corner (for Americans, at least) and that means it’s time to start planning those festive feasts. In Canada, we do Thanksgiving in October, and I’ve been thoroughly enjoying turkey leftovers for the past couple of weeks. One of my favorite healthy creations has been this white bean, turkey, and kale soup. It’s perfect for cold dreary days when you’re craving warm comfort food. If you’re not a meat eater, this recipe can be easily adapted by substituting more beans in place of the turkey.
Photo by Angela Simpson
Makes about 8.5 cups
What You’ll Need:
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
4 ribs celery, chopped
2 medium carrots, sliced thinly into rounds
2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon dried basil (optional)
2 bay leaves
5 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable stock
3 cups cooked turkey, shredded into bite-sized pieces
2 cups cooked white navy beans
2 cups shredded kale
3 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced (optional)
What to Do:
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat for 1 minute. Dice the celery and add it to the pot with the garlic, carrots, and all spices. Stir veggies, coating them in the spice mixture, constantly for 3 minutes or until fragrant.
- Add the vegetable stock. Cover the pot and simmer over medium-low heat for 15 minutes.
- Stir in the turkey and white navy beans. Cover the pot and cook for 3 minutes.
- Finally, add the kale and parsley. Switch off the heat and stir until the leaves are just wilted (about 1 minute).
- Ladle into bowls and garnish with additional parsley if desired.
via PopSugar – YouTube