Q: What’s the deal with all the types of sugar out there? Are they all created equal?
A: Simply . . . no, all sugars are not created equal. But learning how to identify the different types is where it gets complicated.
Whether it’s run-of-the-mill granulated white sugar, high fructose corn syrup or something that sounds fancier, such as turbinado or raw sugar – these are all sweeteners. These ingredients are added to foods as they are processed or prepared. The distinct flavor and degree of sweetness will vary, but no matter which type you’re dealing with, these sweeteners are a pure source of carbohydrate and have about 15 calories per teaspoon. When hefty doses of these types of added sugars are eaten, it can lead to weight gain and poorly controlled blood sugar levels.
The most significant sources of added sugar in the American diet are baked goods, candy, ice cream, soft drinks, fruit drinks, sports drinks and energy drinks.
For a complete list of what qualifies as an added sugar on ingredient label, visit the MyPlate website.
Read more »
It’s a shame calamari is relegated to the deep fryer most of the time. Also known as squid, protein-rich calamari boasts a sweet taste and firm texture when prepared properly (overcooked calamari is overly chewy calamari). One 3.5-ounce serving has just 92 calories, 1 gram of fat, 16 grams of protein, and 56% of your daily recommended intake for iron. It’s also brimming with calcium, dishing up 28% of your daily recommendation. Problem is, a typical serving of restaurant-prepared calamari, AKA breaded and fried, can have up to 900 calories, 20 grams of fat and almost 2,000 mg of sodium. That’s HALF of your recommended calories and fat and your ENTIRE sodium quota for the day.
Worry not – you can enjoy all the health benefits of calamari by preparing it yourself – pan-seared with a Thai-inspired sesame-soy peanut sauce. And don’t worry about searching for calamari in a store far, far away – if you can’t find it at the seafood counter, it’ll be in the frozen foods section in most grocery stores nationwide.
Read more »
Hash browns are almost synonymous with breakfast. Whether you like yours extra-crispy or full of spice, these simple spuds are a perfect weekend brunch item. Surprise dad this Father’s Day with a serving of this hearty breakfast side that’s surprisingly healthy.
If extra potatoes are on hand in the kitchen, simply wash them, shred them and toss them into the skillet for easy hash browns. Stay away from the temptation of peeling the spuds because potato skins add texture. If time is short, use frozen hash browns—a must-have freezer staple. Pick up a few extra bags to have on hand and whip into these easy recipes.
Hash Brown Casserole (pictured above) is a comforting dish that gets lightened up thanks to Greek yogurt and milk. The crispy breadcrumb and cheese topping makes the dish extra-special. Once the casserole is in the oven, use the 45 minutes of cooking time to clean up the kitchen or spend time with Dad.
Read more »
In my house, we always grill steaks for dad on Father’s Day. The secrets to making a steak dinner a healthy one are simple: it’s all a matter of buying the right cuts of beef and making sure portions aren’t outrageous.
Lighter cuts of beef include flank steak, top loin, sirloin, T-bone, filet mignon, and tenderloin. Trim off any visible fat before adding your marinade or rub. Grilling your steak will also allow even more fat to drip off.
Aim for 6-ounces of raw steak and get rid of that bottled sauce. Flavor the steak using fresh herbs, spices, fruits, veggies and other wholesome ingredients. Make a batch of Dana’s Spicy Montreal Steak Seasoning and send the other dads home with their own jar.
Use our lightened-up steak ideas on your favorite dad-worthy recipe, or surprise dad with one of our favorite healthy steak recipes this weekend.
Read more »
Stumped on what to make for the team dinner or confused about the best snacks to bring after the game? Here are tips on the best way to fuel (and refuel) your active little ones.
Team gatherings are a great way to build team morale and make sure everyone gets a good meal the night before a competition. There’s no need for parents to over-think the menu. Provide plenty of fluids (water, 100% fruit juice and milk), some fresh veggies and pasta.
Some parents feel the need to shy away from carbs but this is exactly what athletes need prior to exercise. Pasta dinners are also easy and cost-effective. Add some protein from meatballs, turkey meatballs, chicken breast or chicken sausage, plus a big salad with vinaigrette dressing and voila — all your nutritional bases are covered.
When the weather permits, cook up a team barbecue complete with turkey burgers, veggie burgers, plus pasta and potato salads. Remember to make accommodations for anyone on the team who’s vegetarian or has food allergies.
Don’t forget dessert! A large fruit salad or watermelon wedges and some small baked treats will please the whole crowd. Cookies, brownies or cupcakes decked out with team colors are always popular.
A team brunch might also be a good idea before the team hits the road for a trip. In this case opt for bagels with cream cheese and peanut butter, smoothies, yogurt, fresh fruit, frozen waffles and scrambled egg wraps. All will provide healthy fuel that is easy to grab and go. Don’t forget the fluid here either. Water, 100% fruit juice and if it’s a hot day, sports drinks to take on the bus ride.
Read more »
The health benefits of a Mediterranean diet are numerous – better heart health and reduced risk of cancer, just to name a few. Use these swaps to make your diet more Mediterranean.
Instead of: Butter
Choose: Olive Oil
The Payoff: No cholesterol and an abundance of heart-healthy monounsaturated fats. Drizzle on salads, add to marinades and use to sauté veggies.
Instead of: Beef
The Payoff: A boost of omega-3 fats. These good-for-you fats are also found in walnuts, flax seeds, and canola oil. Make this easy grilled salmon with a fresh fruit salsa for a quick weeknight dinner.
Read more »
When Elana Amsterdam was diagnosed with celiac disease, an autoimmune disorder that keeps the body from processing gluten, she challenged herself to come up with gluten-free recipes that tasted just as good as their regular counterparts. With two gluten-free cookbooks under her belt—and a third, Paleo Cooking from Elana’s Pantry, on sale next week—Elana has a little something for everyone. Find family favorites like pancakes and eggplant Parmesan in The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook, plus dozens of cupcake ideas in Gluten-Free Cupcakes.
You can buy your own copies of Elana’s gluten-free cookbooks or enter in the comments for a chance to win them. Just let us know, in the comments, which gluten-free flours you’ve baked with. The contest starts at 12:00 p.m. EST today, and ends on Friday, June 14 at 5 p.m. EST.
We’re giving away one copy each of Gluten-Free Cupcakes and The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook to five randomly-selected commenters. You must include your email address in the “Email” field when submitting your comment so we can communicate with you if you’re a winner.
You may only comment once to be considered and you don’t have to purchase anything to win; a purchase will not increase your chances of winning. Odds depend on total number of entries. Void where prohibited. Only open to legal residents of 50 U.S. states, D.C. or Puerto Rico, and you must be at least 18 to win. For the first day of the giveaway, all entries (answers) must be entered between 12:00 a.m. EST on June 12 and 5 p.m. EST on June 14, 2013. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of each prize: $34. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a Food Network, 9721 Sherrill Blvd, Knoxville, TN 37932.
So tell us, have you tried almond flour? Coconut flour?
Dad deserves delicious grub on his special day but he doesn’t have to know it’s good for him. Cook him any of these mouthwatering dishes and feel good that you’re feeding him healthy eats.
Read more »
If you think a night out at a Mexican restaurant will sabotage your healthy eating plan, think again! With a little knowledge and planning, there are plenty of options to choose from.
Chipotle Mexican Grill
After playing around with their nutrition calculator, I found the most balanced option was a salad with lettuce, 1 serving of steak, black beans, green tomatilla salsa and fajita veggies.
Nutrition Info: Calories: 355; Total Fat: 8 grams; Saturated Fat: 2 grams; Protein: 40 grams; Carbohydrates: 34 grams; Sodium: 975 milligrams
If you’re in the mood for a taco, choose the soft corn tortilla and one protein (chicken, steak, barbacoa, or carnitas) and top with veggies (lettuce and fajita veggies) and your favorite salsa. This will give you a nutritious meal for around 400 calories.
Check out more healthy Chipotle options.
Read more »
Can’t seem to get going in the morning without a jolt? If you recognize these signs, you may be consuming too much caffeine.
1.) You Can’t Count Cups
You may have heard that a cup of coffee averages 100 milligrams of caffeine, but remember a cup is only 8 fluid ounces. How large is your cup of morning Joe? You might need to do some number crunching.
2.) You’re Not Sleeping Enough
There’s no disputing that caffeine is a stimulant and some folks find that they are more sensitive to it than others. Be smart – if you know that taking in caffeine later in the day disrupts your sleep – skip it and get some zzzzzz’s.
Read more »