Fall is upon us, which means we have officially entered into football and tailgating season! Tailgating is a great time to catch up with friends, eat snacks and have fun before and during the game. However, just because you are in the middle of a parking lot or near the football stadium with your friends does not mean your food choices have to become unhealthy! It just means you have to become a little bit more creative. Not only does healthier snacks at a tailgate fuel your energy more but it will also make your snacks more original and “gourmet”.
Everybody loves dip during any event. The traditional Five Layer Dip is delicious but can be unhealthy especially if you buy it from the store. But if you switch out the ground beef layer in the traditional Five Layer Dip with some whole kernel corn, the dip becomes low fat and low calorie! This dip is easier to make and is just as tasty the well-loved Five Layer Dip! Want to try it? Click here for the recipe. Sour cream and onion dip is also a crowd favorite. The crowd might love you more if you offer them a fresher and healthier version of it. Mix together a yellow onion, fresh garlic, reduced-fat sour cream, plain Greek yogurt (instead of mayonnaise) and seasoning and create your favorite dip within in your kitchen! See the full recipe here.
Eating out or picking up packaged food will increase your sodium intake by almost two thirds of what your sodium intake would be if you made your food at home. Home cooked meals on average have less calories than meals that are purchased outside of the home. When you eat at home, you are more likely to eat less than you would out. This is because restaurants tend to go over the recommended portion sizes. This may appear to be the better deal, ”more for your money”, but it’s not! Home cooked snacks and meals give you more control over your food which can allow you to create healthier versions of your favorite foods.
Want healthier tailgate snack recipes? Click here.
Feature photo by Shari’s Berries
Sleep leading to sickness
Recent studies have confirmed what most people kind of already knew; sleep is good for you. Too little sleep can be directly related to cardiovascular, endocrine, and immune function as well as a lot of other health issues related to a lack of sleep. In a long term sleep study, over 22,000 participants reported their sleeping patterns in parallel with their health from 2005 to 2012. This study found that getting six or less hours of sleep per day had a direct correlation with experiencing sickness of flu-like symptoms and that the more sleep people got, the less they faced these negative health outcomes.
Sleep should be on the agenda
A lack of sleep isn’t just important to bodily functions, it also sets the tone for the rest of the day and many people don’t realize how much sleep may determine their plans and activities. As mentioned earlier sleep can cause a plethora of negative health issues but even more so is the lifestyle that usually comes with not sleeping enough. Turns out, short sleepers are also more likely to have negative health behaviors like not exercising and poor nutrition which in the long run can be detrimental to health. Creating good sleeping habits can translate into other positive health behaviors because of the increased energy and productivity that accompanies being well-rested.
Sleep is serious business
An interesting point Dr. Sanjay R. Patel of the Center for Sleep and Cardiovascular Outcomes at the University of Pittsburgh makes is that “society does not stigmatize the person getting in their car and driving after only four hours of sleep the way it does the person driving after drinking, even though the risk to others on the road may be the same.” Meaning that a lack of sleep can be just as detrimental to motor function and cognitive skills as drinking, but is largely overlooked and the seriousness of the matter is rarely emphasized. He goes more in depth about just how neglected the science of sleep is by mentioning how little physicians usually discuss sleep with their patients due to the lack of training and attention given to sleep in medical school.
While sleep may still be a little bit of a mystery it is clear that adequate sleep is closely related to good health. Not getting enough sleep is not only bad for the body, but also makes it harder to create and sustain other healthy habits, so get those Z’s!
For the full article, click here.
Feature photo by Sima Dimitric
Do you sometimes feel forgetful? There could be a number of factors causing forgetfulness, but according to a recent study, certain food choices might improve brain function. A healthy diet may lead to a sharper brain by improving cognitive function, alertness and memory.
Strengthen your brain by adding more of these foods to your diet
More vegetables please: Vegetables, especially broccoli, cabbage and dark leafy greens can help improve your memory. If you struggle finding ideas to increase vegetable intake, these suggestions might work for you.
- Stir fry – add onions, broccoli or any other vegetable of your choosing. Make it fun and celebrate “Stir-Fryday” with the entire family!
- Get rid of the bun – choose to eat your favorite sandwich wrapped in collard greens, cabbage or kale.
- Dip it – hummus and veggies can be quick, easy and delicious. Some popular choices include broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and cucumbers.
Don’t forget to be sweet: Berries contain high amounts of flavonoids and other potential brain boosters. Darker berries, like blackberries, blue berries and cherries, are high in flavonoids. Add berries to your cereal, or yogurt for a little extra. If that doesn’t work, a handful of berries on the fly might be just what you need.
Fishing for answers: Omega-3 fatty acids may help improve memory as well. To increase your omega-3, look for seafood including salmon, bluefin tuna, herring and sardines. If you find it difficult to get seafood in the mix, try to replace a few meat dishes with a seafood alternative. Fish tacos and tuna fish can be a good option when pressed for time.
Go nuts: Walnuts are known for making a positive impact on health. Keep a sandwich bag full at work, and enjoy an easy snack while refueling your brain. If you are looking for a little extra, add chopped walnuts to your morning oatmeal.
For the full article, please click Here
Feature photo by NIH Image Gallery
Do you feel like you have tried every diet out there and failed? Well I am about to change your life, enter intuitive eating. In this new approach, you can eat whatever your body craves (even that cheeseburger and fries!). The catch – you must learn to eat only when you are hungry and stop when you are full. Seems to be that with this diet filled world, many of us have forgotten how to just…eat.
Do not be mistaken, this is not a diet. It is considered a non-diet, weight-neutral approach. The focus is on total health and well-being, rather than weight loss. You might even be amazed that your body actually craves healthy foods once it’s not thought of as a punishment.
If any of this resonates with you, check out the 10 Principles of Intuitive Eating as summarized below:
- Reject the Diet Mentality – Throw out your diet books an magazine articles.
- Honor Your Hunger – When you are hungry, eat.
- Make Peace with Food – Give yourself unconditional permission to eat any food.
- Challenge the Food Police – Throw out terms like good food and bad food.
- Respect Your Fullness – Listen to your body and stop when you are full.
- Discover the Satisfaction Factor – Food is pleasurable! Enjoy it.
- Honor Your Feelings Without Using Food – Food won’t fix any of your feelings.
- Respect Your Body – Love the body that you have right now.
- Exercise-Feel the Difference – Learn how much better your body feels with movement.
- Honor Your Health – Balance your tastebuds while making you feel well. You don’t have to eat perfect to be healthy.
As you can see, a major component of this program is acceptance. Making peace with yourself and your body, learning to not use on food for emotional support, etc. This little graphic says so much.
For more information on intuitive eating check out the book that made it famous, Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole & Elyse Resch.
Feature photo by reynermedia
September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month. Did you know that according to the CDC, 1 in 3 children are overweight or obese? Working in at least three days of activity for 30 minutes on your family calendar every week will help keep you and your family healthy. Keep in mind that kids should also get about 60 minutes of play a day. Here a few ideas to help your family get moving:
- Take turns choosing an activity for the entire family. This way everyone gets to do an activity they enjoy.
- If you are watching TV together, have fitness challenges during the commercial breaks. Try doing jumping jacks, sit-ups or push-ups through the whole commercial.
- Go for a family walk. It can be around your neighborhood, or head to a local park.
- Create a scavenger hunt with items you can find outside or in the home.
These are just a few ideas to get you moving. Kids are recommended to get at least 60 minutes of activity everyday. Eating healthy also plays an important role in maintaining a healthy weight. For more ideas to get active, and eating healthy, check out Let’s Move!
If you have some fun family activities or healthy recipes, leave us a comment below!
Feature photo by U.S. Department of Agriculture
Continuing with the New Year and the topic of weight loss, has anyone tried My Fitness Pal? It is a free app and website that you can use to help track your nutrition and exercise.
Here at Moda I am coordinating a 10 week New Year’s Resolution Challenge that consists of 3 circuit training workouts a week. Each workout is just 30 minutes long. Along with the workouts we will also be tracking our exercise and nutrition using My Fitness Pal. This was our first week and I am feeling really motivated! Read More
This past Tuesday, July 23, the First Lady spoke to over 1,800 attendees at the National Council of La Raza’s Annual Conference and shared her thoughts on food and how intimately intertwined it is in our culture. I’ve taken a few of her statements for us to take a closer look below. She states:
Because the truth is, for so many of us, food is love… Read More
ODSFounded in 1955, The ODS Companies (ODS) is a multi-faceted organization that provides dental, medical, and professional liability insurance products, along with a variety of business services including dental practice management software and benefits administration. is proud to join the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (formerly the American Dietetic Association) during March in celebrating National Nutrition Month. This year’s National Nutrition Month theme is “Get Your Plate in Shape” and encourages consumers to remember to include a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins and dairy on their plates every day.
Here are a few ways to “Get Your Plate in Shape” from the food and nutrition experts at the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics:
- Make half of your plate fruits and vegetables: Eat a variety of vegetables, especially dark-green, red and orange varieties. Add fresh, dried, frozen or canned fruits to meals and snacks.
- Make at least half your grains whole: Choose 100 percent whole-grain breads, cereals, crackers, pasta and brown rice. Check the ingredients list on food packages to find whole-grain foods.
- Switch to fat-free or low-fat milk: Fat-free and low-fat milk have the same amount of calcium and other essential nutrients as whole milk, but less fat and calories. For those who are lactose intolerant, try lactose-free milk or a calcium-fortified soy beverage.
- Vary your protein choices: Eat a variety of foods from the protein food group each week, such as seafood, nuts and beans, as well as lean meat, poultry and eggs. Keep meat and poultry portions small and lean. And be sure to choose seafood as the protein at least twice a week.
- Cut back on sodium and empty calories from solid fats and added sugars: Compare sodium in foods and choose those with lower numbers, and season your foods with herbs and spices instead of salt. Switch from solid fats to healthy oils like olive and canola oil. Replace sugary drinks with water and choose fruit for dessert.
- Enjoy your foods but eat less: Avoid oversized portions. Use a smaller plate, bowl and glass. Cook more often at home where you are in control of what’s in your food. When eating out, choose lower calorie menu options.
- Be physically active your way: Adults need at least 2 hours and 30 minutes of physical activity every week. Choose activities that you enjoy, and start by doing as much as you can.
As part of this public education campaign, the Academy’s National Nutrition Month website includes a variety of helpful tips, fun games, promotional tools and nutrition education resources, all designed to spread the message of good nutrition around the “Get Your Plate in Shape” theme. Check them out and let us know how you are celebrating National Nutrition Month!
The U.S. News & World Report reviewed and ranked 20 diets for the title of Best Diet. It is important to note that the word “diet” means different things in our society. In this case, diet is defined as the food and drink regularly consumed not necessarily for weight loss. The U.S. News & World Report chose winners Read More
Did you make a New Year’s resolution this year? If so, how are you doing? I have decided that my resolution is to get back on track with healthy eating and exercise. This is a very common goal for most people on January 1st. Trust me when I say that everyone struggles with this. Read More