Healthy Meals

3 Top Tips For Healthy Meals

When we are young, the concept of healthy meals is very black and white. Vegetables are good and fast food is bad. Cleaning your plate is good and being wasteful is bad. As we grow up, no one bothers to tell us that, in reality, individual foods are neither good nor bad- only too much food is bad. In fact, the idea that we need to clean our plates has gotten us into big trouble.

As it turns out, nutrition isn’t black and white at all. On a physiological level, it can be extremely complicated. Sometimes we do all the right things and still can’t seem to manage our weight, our energy, or our health. Of course, if we could only live on the Biggest Loser Ranch we wouldn’t have any of the obstacles that make eating healthy meals so complicated and impractical in the real world.

If only there were a few simple rules that made eating healthy simple?!

The good news is, there are three simple tips that can make healthy meals more of a no brainer. After all, we don’t all have the time or money to study nutrition, to visit a certified nutritionist, or to order all our meals packaged and ready-to-eat.

If you assess your diet regarding the three guidelines below, you will be doing a better job than most towards getting the nutrients and energy your body needs. (And by “diet” I don’t mean that four letter word that signifies perpetual deprivation but simply, what you consume daily.)

The Three Tips are to
1) keep your meals colorful
2) keep your meals small and frequent, and
3) keep your meals fresh.

As we explore these criteria in a little more depth, it will highlight some reasons you should incorporate them into your lifestyle.

1) Keep Your Healthy Meals Colorful

Our body needs six different nutrients to function optimally during the day. These include carbohydrates, proteins, fat, vitamins, minerals, and water. Most of us don’t have time or sufficient interest to make getting our daily allowance of amino acids and essential vitamins a scientific venture. So how can you make sure you are getting what you need? Answer: by keeping your meals colorful. It is that simple.

Picture a plate containing fish and chips beside a smoked salmon salad with a whole grain roll. One of these plates is monochromatic and the other has reds, greens, browns and whatever else your imagination used to dress it up. The more colorful plate has half the calories, more than twice the nutritional benefit, and will provide more lasting energy. Meanwhile, the monochromatic plate is also more likely to make you feel sluggish and desperately thirsty as a result of excessive sodium levels. The point is, picking healthy meals is a choice you are free to make.

While carbohydrates ( like bread, potatoes, rice, and starchy vegetables) and protein ( like meat, beans, and dairy) should be components of every meal, the more fruits and vegetables you add, the healthier and more colorful your meal will be. Even adding peas and carrots to the fish and chips plate would significantly increase the nutritional value of this dish. Presentation is not just for cooking shows- it is for your health, too.

People who eat mindfully (or in other words, don’t have a weight problem) enjoy food with all of their senses. Practice making your meals and snacks colorful by incorporating a variety of food groups. This way they will be a feast for your senses, your belly, and your body.

2) Keep Your Healthy Meals Smaller and More Frequent

A healthy eating schedule is going to vary from person to person. Three square meals a day is sometimes the only thing someone has time to prepare and enjoy. However, food is fuel. If you are hungry, eat. If you are not hungry, don’t. For many people, enjoying 4-6 smaller meals everyday actually helps them function more efficiently.

Deprivation is not beneficial for your body or mind. You have to eat to lose. However, most of us are used to mindlessly eating portion sizes that are larger than what we really need. You want to be satisfied but not stuffed.

More frequent, smaller meals keep your metabolism revved and make it less likely that you will store food as fat instead of burning it for fuel. It also keeps your energy levels and blood sugar levels steady which decreases the likelihood of overeating at your next meal or suffering crashes in energy that cause you to crave lousy, processed foods and sweets.

Anyone who has ever grocery shopped on an empty stomach knows that creating healthy meals is easier if you don’t let yourself get overly hungry. By making sure you have a healthy breakfast and healthy snacks available for the day ahead, you will be significantly less likely to feel the need to stuff your face and you will find it easier to manage your weight. Overall, focusing on eating to keep your energy up and your hunger under control will help you be a pleasant, healthy person.

3) Keep Your Foods Fresh

Eating healthy meals doesn’t mean buying packaged foods that say they are healthy on the

Fat Loss Goals

Create Healthy Meal Plans to Achieve Your Fat Loss Goals

No one else can create healthy meal plans that you will find appealing except you. While it is possible to make suggestions, offer ideas and provide new ways of dealing with specific ingredients, if you aren’t ready to take responsibility for your own eating, nothing will work. Start with great ingredients and use them to create foods you find tasty, appealing and fun.

Look at the Ingredients that You Use for Cooking

Not all ingredients are equal. For example, sugar, one of the most common ingredients in just about every commercially prepared food, is a nutritional disaster. Not only is sugar empty calories, it creates a sort of dependence where you crave it the more you eat it. The typical cycle of sugar high and sugar crash increases your appetite for the very thing that makes your body crazy.

Commercially processed milk is a terrible source of calcium and lacks the enzymes that raw milk has to assist digestion. Grain fed beef has higher levels of saturated fat than grass fed beef. The examples go on forever.

Purchase as many organic ingredients as you can afford. Stick to grass fed meats, wild caught fish, organic whole eggs, and organic poultry for your protein. Get organic produce whenever you can and enjoy the immense variety, searching out new foods to try when you can. Make a selection of several whole grains or brown rice from the bulk bins and try them out. You are sure to find a few that you really like.

Meal Planning 101

If you have never planned your meals, the idea may seem a bit foreign. After all, for many people planning a meal is as bizarre as planning how to turn on the television. The fact is that, at least at first, when you are changing the way you eat, planning is your primary weapon.

Take a look at what you have and figure out a few recipes you would like to try this week. What days do you want to try them? If you are trying a new way of cooking your brown rice, then make a standard protein to avoid overwhelming yourself with extra work. How many different kinds of vegetables can you fit into your menu this week? Shoot for a new record

Slowly build up a number of quick, easy, go-to meals that you always have in your tool kit so you don’t feel tempted to run to the nearest fast food joint when you are hungry in the evening. All these skills will carry you through your nutritional life well.

Your Commitment to a Healthy Lifestyle is All Up to You

In the final equation, it is up to you to make a commitment to your healthy meal plans and how you will achieve your success. If you put effort into the process, you are much more likely to reach your goals. Remember, the goal of eating isn’t just to sustain life; it is designed to be a celebration of life, and the way you eat reflects that attitude. Choose good foods, prepare them in an appetizing method and enjoy your meals. You will be happy you did.

Healthy Meals Control

Fast and Healthy Meals to Control High Blood Pressure

It is essential to eat a healthy diet if you have been diagnosed with high blood pressure. However, eating healthy is not always easy on the family cook. Many healthy recipes involve many steps or are more difficult to make. For this reason, people are always looking for tips to help them make fast and healthy meals to control high blood pressure.

Salads are very easy to make and do not have to boring. In fact, there are thousands of possible combinations that require little work on your part. Many people purchase bags of salad mix, and this is a good base to work with. You can also purchase many prepared vegetables at your grocery store, cutting the work in half. Afraid a salad will not fill you? You can even make a salad a meal by adding leftover chicken or fish. This is just one of the fast and healthy meals to control high blood pressure that you can make in minutes.

Another staple commonly found in fast and healthy meals to control high blood pressure is chicken. Many people easily tire of chicken because they always prepare it in the same way- baked. Chicken is perhaps the most versatile meat on the market. A very simple and flavorful chicken dish takes under five minutes. All you have to do is pour a jar of salsa over your chicken before you bake it. This provides excellent flavor and does not add calories, fat, or cholesterol. Nothing could be easier!

Many fish dishes are also fast and healthy meals to control high blood pressure. Fish is heart friendly, but the preparation is often problematic. Be sure to avoid recipes that involve a lot of butter or salty ingredients. Fish is naturally salty, so it does not need additional salt. Fish is often at its best when it is grilled. This takes only a few minutes. All you have to do is season it with your favorite herbs or spices. Many grocery stores offer seasoned fish and seafood in ready to prepare packaging. This can be a very healthy alternative, but be sure to read the ingredients before you purchase the item to make sure it is heart healthy.

If you are interested in learning more about preparing fast and healthy meals to control high blood pressure, there are many resources online. You can even make an appointment to meet with a nutritionist to discuss your diet.

Healthy Meal Ideas

Healthy Meal Ideas

If you are looking for healthy meal ideas, you are not alone. Many people are taking control of their health, learning how to prevent chronic and life threatening illnesses and living longer, healthier lives. Below, you will see a couple of popular menus, along with advice for making them healthier, without sacrificing taste.

Steak & Baked Potato

Although it is still the favorite of many, the ever popular beef steak is not the best choice for anyone that wants to live a long life, free of chronic disease. A good alternative is a salmon steak and a baked sweet potato or yam.

Salmon is delicious and it is also loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, which are good for the health of your heart and circulatory system. Beef steak contains some omega-3s, but the concentration of omega-6s is much higher.

Higher intake of omega-6s, combined with low intake of omega-3 causes systematic or chronic inflammation, which plays a role in heart disease and cancer.

The omega-3 found in beef is not the same as those found in salmon and other types of fatty fish. In fact, fish and seafood are the only dietary sources of DHA and EPA, two of the most important omega-3s.

You will see yams taking the place of white potatoes in many healthy meal ideas. Although the white potato is low in fat and has some nutritional value, it is a simple carbohydrate that is processed too quickly. Simple carbohydrates contribute to high blood sugar levels and high insulin levels, which in turn contributes to inflammation and can lead to type 2 diabetes.

Yams, on the other hand, are more complex carbohydrates, which are digested slowly. They contain a number of different antioxidants, as well as Phytosterols, nutrients that benefit the heart and help keep hormonal levels balanced.

Fried Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, Cole Slaw & Biscuits

If you are looking for healthy meal ideas, you are probably already aware that the menu above is not a good choice. But, where are the problems?

Chicken breasts are lean, healthy and a good source of protein, but if you coat it with breading and drop in a deep fryer, you have a high fat, high carbohydrates food that is almost as bad asa bag of potato chips. Bake or grill the breasts to keep them healthier.

The cabbage and carrots in coleslaw are relatively healthy, although the cabbage that most people eat is a hybrid, low in nutritional value. One of my favorite healthy meal ideas is to substitute purple cabbage, Chinese cabbage and kale for the standard variety. It gives the nutritional value a boost and has the same pleasant crunch.

Instead of making mashed potatoes, you can mash yams, steam some broccoli or mash some turnips. Biscuits at fast food restaurants are a source of fatty acids, the ones that are worst for your health. Try some whole wheat rolls, instead.

If you are looking for healthy meal ideas because you need to lose weight, now is the time to learn more about the importance of when you eat and what foods you eat together. It could help you reach your goals faster.

Healthy Meals For Your Family

5 Guidelines For Cooking Healthy Meals For Your Family

Cooking healthy for your family is important for everyone. Not only will you be eating healthy meals, but your children will learn a lot from eating healthy. They will get to experience healthy foods that they may have not even tried before, or wanted to. They will learn how to cook healthy meals so that they can pass down this tradition to their own children in the future. They will also come to enjoy healthy meals better than junk or foods that are bad for them.

Cooking healthy meals for your family will give everyone the energy they need for a full day, give them better concentration and focus, and help them do well in life. This will not deprive your family in any way. You will all be getting the proper nutrients you need without completely passing on all treats. Eating healthy is important for your health – not just now, but for the future as well. Studies have shown that eating healthy can help to reduce the risks of various ailments, heart disease, stroke, and many cancers. You can help your family lead a healthier life by cooking healthy meals.

Guidelines For Healthy Cooking –

1) Use Plenty of Fruits And Vegetables: Fruits and vegetables are often overlooked in today’s diet. However, fruits and vegetables are very important because they have vitamins, minerals and even antioxidants to keep you healthy, strong and help you fight illnesses. It is important to use fresh ingredients when cooking. Do not overcook your vegetables, as this will take out some of the nutritional value of them. Consider serving your vegetables raw or just blanch them (boil for about 5 minutes). Kids will especially love blanched veggies because it brings out their colors and makes them a little bit softer. Blanching doesn’t take out nutrients because you are only boiling them for 5 minutes. Just wait for the water to boil and place the veggies in. Put them on ice after the 5 minutes to stop the cooking process. You may also want to serve fruits with dinnertime as well. Most people don’t and that is why most people don’t get enough fruit in their daily diet. Serve a fruit and veggie with each meal.

2) Stick To Lean Meats And Fish: Lean meats and fish are an important part of your diet. However, too much meat can actually cause health problems. This is why adding fish to at least two meals a week can increase your health. Lean meats are better for you because they have less fat and sometimes less cholesterol than the other meats. Look for lean meats in your grocery store. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different types of fish: salmon, tuna steaks, haddock, cod, etc. Fish has important fatty acids that are excellent for your body and mind.

3) Watch The Fat You Use: Try to wean off of real butter and other fatty foods. If you must use real butter remember that just one tab of it a day is enough – no more. There are other options to choose from than just butter or lard. Add some of these items to your kitchen and your meals: olive oil, avocado, vegetable oil, butter spread made from olive oil, etc. You can also try using spices for your meals instead of fats. Try balsamic vinegar on your salad instead of salad dressing, or vinegar and olive oil. These can make great alternatives to other fatty foods.

4) What You Drink Counts Too! Do not forget about what you drink. As adults, we tend to not pay any attention to what we choose for beverages. A simple can of soda can have a lot of calories, sodium, sugar, and more in it. It doesn’t really matter if it is diet or not. It is still unhealthy. Cut down on drinks like soda, juices, coffee, and tea. You can healthily have coffee and tea about two times a day – that’s two cups a day, especially if you use sugar and cream. Try using lemon in your tea instead of honey or sugar. The best thing to drink is water. Always try to choose water over any other drink. Kids should not have more than two cups of juice a day because of the sugar. Make sure they get water everyday – and you too!

5) Treats In Moderation Are Ok: This is not a fad diet. This is a lifestyle change for you and your family. Yes, you can have treats in moderation. Have something every once in a while.

Healthy Meal Plans For Kids

Healthy Meal Plans For Kids

A healthy meal plan for kids is highly advised these days as the childhood obesity crisis in the country continue to escalate to alarming levels. This is something that parents should not take for granted. The general lifetime health of their kid largely depends on the habits he forms during childhood, including food choices and food habits.

Parents can do a lot for the health of their children, and if they are beginners in their area, a healthy meal plan will save them lots of stress and tremendously help in protecting their kids. Given that your kids are picky eaters, making a healthy meal plan will also address this issue because you can talk about it beforehand.

A healthy meal plan for kids will obviously help you in keeping them at the right weight since you perfectly know what goes in their bodies. When you plan meals for them in advance, this eliminates the need for you to call take out or drive through a fast food when you suddenly realize you are out of time and you still have not decided on what to cook for your kid. By adopting a healthy meal plan for your kids, you stress less – even in your grocery shopping because you already know what you need to buy in the first place.

Make it a point to plan for each week’s menu and prepare your list of ingredients that you will be needing for the whole week. You may argue that this is something that will take additional time but trust me, when you come to the grocery store with a list, not only do you buy healthy, you also save money, and you cut the time you spend in half since you do not go around isle per isle, wondering what it is you might need. Plus the cut back on multi-grocery shopping trips and on buying meals at the food court is dramatic you will absolutely love doing a healthy meal plan not just for your kids, but for the whole family.

In fact, that is actually the best idea that you can do to make your healthy meal plans more successful. Prepare it as a family and watch your family bond get stronger each week as you spend more quality time with your kids planning and probably sharing some stories over the kitchen counter.

But most certainly, making healthy meal plans start with making the commitment to your kids, yourself, your body and basically the entire family that you want to be eating healthier. This is not overwhelming at all, in fact it is easy once you try it.

Healthy Weight Loss

Healthy Meals For Healthy Weight Loss

Gone are the days when weight loss diets only offer you to munch on carrot sticks and tomatoes for dinner. Today, more new meals are being invented and prepared for folks who want to cut some pounds. Nutritionist, dietitians and even chefs are eagerly spending time to create various meals that would not propose additional weight but in contrast offer healthy weight loss.

Eat healthy and live healthy. People who desire to lose weight should change their eating habits from “I don’t care what I eat” notion to “I control what I eat”. It is very important to prepare and eat healthy meals each and every day to assure that you are reducing your weight the right way.

For those seeking for tips of what food to eat, here are some healthy meals you can prepare for you and your family:

· Green Salad

Greens are good. Green leafy salads are one of the most popular meals for a dieter because it suffice amount of required fiber for the body. It also provides a lot of vitamins and nutrients that lessens the risk of certain diseases. Just make sure your salad is served with fat free dressing.

· Grilled Fish

Fish is an all-time favorite meal for those in a diet because it gives less fat, less calorie. It is also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids which are good for the heart. But forget to fry your fish in high-cholesterol oil; it is better to deliciously enjoy it as grilled or steamed.

· Roasted Chicken

Say goodbye for now to fried patties, chicken fingers or nuggets. Chicken is best served when roasted as the oil is already drained before serving. Also try removing the skin before cooking to lessen fat. You may also put your chicken to a steam or broil for a healthier meal.

· Broiled Shrimp

Shrimp is a healthy source of lean protein which is a healthy alternative to meat protein. It is low in calorie and saturated fat which makes it a perfect choice for those in a diet. Shrimp is also a great source of different vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids that supports for a healthier body. Broil your shrimp for a hearty meal.

· Whole wheat Pizza

Who said you cannot eat pizza while on a diet? Yes, an ordinary pizza may contribute too much calorie but a whole wheat one offers significantly lesser calories and more dietary fiber. So to satisfy your craving of a cheesy pizza, use whole wheat crust and skim mozzarella.

Healthy Meals

Healthy Meals 24/7

Wouldn’t you feel great if you had healthy and delicious meals throughout the day, every day of the week? Of course you would, but for most of us preparing healthy meals seems too difficult, time consuming, and intimidating. Well, I’m here to tell you that the secret to having healthy meals on hand anytime and every time is planning and having healthy food staples. Let’s be honest, most of us spend more time planning a night out than we do our planning our meals for the week and are more concerned about the staples in our wardrobe than the staples in our pantry. So, it’s time to shift your priorities and efforts if you are serious about making healthy lifestyle changes in your diet and in your life.

Healthy Meal Planning: Groceries
Purchasing healthy foods takes not more time or effort that buying pre-package, processed, unhealthy foods, and while some healthy foods may require cooking and/or preparation time, aren’t you and your family worth it? When you shop at the supermarket, or receive your grocery delivery you want to see a rainbow of colors in your produce, a variety of whole grains, and lean, healthy proteins. If you find that because of your schedule fresh fruits and vegetables go bad purchase frozen or canned. I personally love frozen greens like collards and kale and I always have canned beans and pumpkin, and marinated artichoke hearts on hand. If you and/or your family are used to having frozen processed foods, sugary, calorie laden sweets and unhealthy snacks you want to gradually replace and remove these items from your diet. For example, switch from regular chips to baked chips, regular popcorn for low-fat popcorn, regular soda for flavored seltzer, full fat ice cream for lite or reduced fat. For a quick, healthy breakfast have whole grain cereals, breads and waffles on hand. Lunches can alternate between healthy, home-made brown bag and healthier take-out options that are offered with whole grains and whole grain breads, as well as with sushi and salads (go easy on the dressing, cheeses, crispy chicken, bacon, etc.). For healthy snacks be sure to stock up on nuts, dried and fresh fruit, and yogurt. And as always, be aware of portion sizes. Eating healthier is not a green light to over eat.

Healthy Meal Planning: Staples
In order to able to toss together a quick healthy meal anytime, you must have essential staples on hand. First are the fresh groceries that you have already stocked your refrigerator with, second are the staples that you should have in your pantry and/or cabinets. Some essential pantry staples are:

Canned fish and vegetables- Canned fishes like salmon and tuna provide omega-3 fatty acids and add a protein punch to sandwiches, salads, and pasta. Canned and marinated vegetables like canned tomatoes, pumpkin and marinated mushrooms and artichokes help transform an ordinary grain, soup, or sauce into a more flavorful, exciting meal, plus they’re chock-full of nutrients.

Whole Grains- Experiment with different grains like barley, bulgur wheat, quinoa, millet, and brown rice, which is also available in long and short grain, and basmati. Whole wheat and quinoa pastas are great for a quick, healthy and filling dinner. Mix things up and use assorted shapes and sizes of pasta with a varied combination of vegetables and lean proteins.

Broths, bouillon cubes and powders, which are also available in healthier versions like fat-free, low sodium, all natural and vegetarian add guilt free depth of flavor to meats, grains, soups, casseroles, and sauces.

Nuts- Pine nuts, almonds, hazelnuts, cashews, and walnuts contribute heart-healthy fats, as well as adding texture, flavor, and substance to salads, grains, and hot vegetables dishes.

Oils, Vinegars, and Spices- Explore the spice aisles and ethic food sections of your market. You will find an endless variety of oils like olive, canola, safflower, truffle, and coconut-vinegars like fig, rice, apple cider, red vine and balsamic-spices like cardamom, turmeric, cumin, paprika, and cinnamon along with spice blends like lemon-pepper, Italian and steak seasoning, sazón, adobo, and curries add tons of flavor without adding sodium and fat.

Healthy Meal Planning: Cooking
You can enjoy healthy meals every day without having to cook every day, really, once again planning is key. One day a week, whichever day your schedule allows, cook enough grains/carbohydrates, proteins and vegetables for 4-6 days, this is what I call your healthy meals base. For example, as my base, I like to bake two sheet trays of tofu, cook about 4 cups of quinoa and steam or bake a massive amount of vegetables for the week. Throughout the week, you can then vary and modify your healthy meals base with your healthy staples and groceries. Add sautéed, colorful peppers and savory onion and garlic to your protein to make a fajita or stir fry, add dried fruits and nuts to your grain to make a delicious pilaf and dress your vegetables with one of your many fl