Flavors of the Season: Spring Produce

Fruits and vegetables can be enjoyed all year round. In season fruits and vegetables are usually more affordable and make great additions to meals and snacks. Spring offers a variety of fruits and veggies including apricots, asparagus, broccoli, carrots, celery, collard greens, kiwi, pineapple, spinach, strawberries, etc. Produce has many health benefits but unfortunately most people are not meeting the recommended five servings of fruits and veggies each day.  In fact, research has found that, “just 1 in 10 adults meet the federal fruit or vegetable recommendations.” Not only are fruits and vegetables delicious but having a balanced diet that includes a variety of fruits and vegetables may reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke and certain cancers. Reflect on your habits. Where can you add an additional serving of produce? Can you add a piece of fruit as a [...]

Snacking On-The-Go

  Snacking is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle. Controlling hunger, by eating reasonably throughout the day, allows us to protect ourselves from losing steam. Going too long between meals results in a dip in your blood sugar (glucose) which can often leave you feeling sluggish. Snacking strategically will provide your body with the energy it needs, increase your attention-span and even improve your mood! By incorporating healthy snacks into your day, you may find that you have more energy to exercise and do the things you enjoy most. What is a healthy snack? Snacks should be thought of as “mini-meals” consisting of nutrient-rich foods around 100-250 calories. A nutritious snack usually includes a carbohydrate, a protein and a fat component: Carbohydrates are your body’s main fuel source. When snacking, carbs provide your body with a quick source of [...]

Working From Home: Mindful Snacking

Mindful Snacking With many of us sheltering at home, we tend to gravitate towards activities that keep us occupied. Sometimes we choose activities to escape the feeling of boredom. They give us a reason to break from work or serve as a distraction from stress and difficult emotions. During these times, snacking may become a frequent habit. It is important to recognize that snacking is not inherently “good” or “bad.” The choice to include snacks in your diet should be based on your activity level, overall calorie needs, health goals, and medical conditions. One way to keep snacking in moderation and avoid unwanted snacking habits is to take a mindfulness approach.   Mindfulness simply involves being aware of your body’s internal state (thoughts, feelings, motivation, etc.) without judgment. Setting Up Successful Snacking Routines 1. Listen to your hunger cues Your body [...]

Munch Through March Madness

If you’re one of the 97+ million U.S. viewers of NCAA’s March Madness, you’re bound to be tempted by typical gameday snacks. Wing orders alone increase by 24% during the tournament, and if your favorite team loses, you’re more likely to indulge in a variety of gameday treats.  Pizza and dessert orders also increase by 19% and 9%, respectively, following losses versus wins. But what about the beer? Three and a half million extra cases of it are produced in March to keep up with demand. It’s already easy to overeat traditional gameday foods (pizza, wings, chips, dips, and desserts) that are notoriously high in salt, sugar, and fat. It's a combination that fires-up our brain’s reward center and steers us towards overeating and unintended weight gain. Add distracted eating to the mix during March Madness, and you’re even more [...]