Friday, 31 May 2013

Raspberry Cheesecake Popsicles - 93 Calories Each!

ONLY 93 Calories each!!

Raspberry Cheesecake Popsicles

Yield: 6 medium popsicles


8 oz fresh raspberries (or blueberries/blackberries/cherries)
1 tablespoon water
4 oz low fat cream cheese
3 tablespoons fat free milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup powdered sugar


In a small saucepan over medium heat, cook raspberries and 1 tablespoon of water for 10 minutes or until they are easily broken up with a wooden spoon.
Transfer mixture to a food processor (or strong blender) and puree till there are no lumps left. Refrigerate raspberry puree until cool, about 30 minutes.
Then in food processor, puree cream cheese, milk, vanilla extract and powdered sugar -until smooth.
In popsicle molds, layer raspberry puree and cream cheese mixture. Insert popsicle sticks and freeze for at least 2 hours. Enjoy!

nutrition info per popsicle: 93 calories. 3.7g fat. 12 carbs. 3g fiber. 7g sugar. 2.7g protein.
**nutrition info calculated using**

Thursday, 30 May 2013

6 Best Summer Foods for Weight Loss

Lighten up your diet this summer with these refreshing foods and drinks.
By Kathleen M. Zelman, MPH, RD, LD
WebMD Feature
Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

You don’t need to starve yourself on a wacky fad diet if you want to look better in your shorts or swimsuit this summer.
The secret to weight loss is to choose healthy foods and take in fewer calories than you burn. And it's just easier to make better food choices in summertime, when heavy, high-calorie dishes seem less appealing. The best foods for weight loss in summer are light, refreshing and, most important, keep you out of the hot kitchen.
The single easiest way to trim calories from your summer diet, experts say, is to load up on nature’s bounty. Produce is at its peak in summer. Delicious fruits and vegetables abound at farmers' markets and in your local grocery. Besides being low in calories, produce is loaded with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber.
"Enjoy fresh produce in season. You will be thrilled at how fresh, delicious, and satisfying it tastes," says Susan Moores, RD, a St. Paul, Minn. nutrition consultant. "Save the oranges and apples for fall, and load up on fresh berries, melons, greens, tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, beets, pea pods, and all the super-nutritious and low-calorie fruits, greens and vegetables that grow in the garden this time of year."
As a bonus, you can forget about portion control when it comes to fresh fruit and vegetables, Moores say.
"Go for it, because it is hard to do much damage to your waistline with these super-nutritious edibles," says Moores
To keep your cool and cut your time in the kitchen, start with prepared produce, such as cut-up fruit and washed greens. Add rotisserie chicken, prepared soups, and pre-threaded kabobs when you need something a bit heartier. Pre-prepped foods may cost a little extra, but they save time in the kitchen.
Here are dietitian's picks for some of the best foods to help with weight loss during the summer.

Best Summer Weight Loss Food No. 1: Chilled Soups

Moores loves all kind of produce but says cold soups are among her favorite low-calorie dishes.  Chilled soups like gazpacho or cucumber-dill that contain lots of chunky vegetables are a great way to start a meal.
"Research shows that a low-calorie, broth-based soup at the beginning of the meal will fill you so you eat less at the meal," Moores says.

Best Summer Weight Loss Food No. 2: Watermelon

Who doesn’t love diving into a crisp, juicy slice of watermelon when it's hot outside?
"Half of the watermelon comes from water," Moores says. "It’s a wonderful way to satisfy thirst and a yen for something sweet."

Best Summer Weight Loss Food No. 3: Grilled Veggies

For Dawn Jackson Blatner, RD, a plate of grilled vegetables is a summertime must-have. She recommends keeping a plate of grilled onions, bell peppers, zucchini, carrots, eggplant, asparagus, and garlic in your fridge. You can use them to make dishes like:
  1. Grilled vegetable and goat cheese salads
  2. Grilled vegetable pitas
  3. Grilled vegetable, ricotta, and fresh herb pasta and frittatas

30 Healthy Summer Food Ideas

Summer is the time when most of us bring out our swimwear and hit the beach to beat the rising temperatures and searing heat of summer. Well it's also the right time to shed few pounds as well! However instead of going for a strict diet regime that will dampen your sunshine, try to avail of a variety of wonderful summer foods which the summer brings along. The secret is that these summer foods will help you to stay fit and healthy. Heavy, high calorie foods as it is seem less appealing in summer so you can easily eat light, healthy food. Listed below are 30 cool summer food suggestions, which are healthy, refreshing and most importantly will help you to stay energized and avoid the ill effects of summer.
1.  Watermelon - Watermelon has more than 80 percent water, so this summer fruit is an excellent way to satisfy your thirst and keep you hydrated during summers
2.  Grilled vegetables - Keep your refrigerator stocked with a plate of prepared grilled peppers, grilled onions, carrots, zucchini, garlic, eggplant, celery and asparagus. The antioxidant properties present in these summer vegetables can help to minimize skin damage caused due to sun exposure during summer days.
3.  Grilled salads - Use grilled summer vegetables to prepare a variety of dishes like grilled vegetable pitas, grilled vegetable and fresh herb pasta or ricotta or frittatas and grilled vegetable and reduced calorie cheese salads.
4.  Chilled soups - Chilled soups are great appetizers to start your meal. Choose chilled soups like cucumber-dill or gazpacho which are loaded with crunchy vegetables. Moreover soups also account to your total fluid intake and thus can help you stay hydrated.
5.  Whole grain salads - Whole grain salads like tabouli and wheat berry are also excellent summer choices.
6.  Vegetable salads - Like chilled soups, salads are also great way to kick start your meals. Almost all the salads need minimum preparation time and are considered healthy, quick meals provided you don’t load them with heavy dressings. Remember the more the number of fresh vegetables in the diet the healthier you will be during summer.
7.  Bean and sprout salads - Toss some beans or sprouts along with sliced or diced vegetables and fruits to increase the protein content of the salads.
8.  Vegetable cheese salads - Toss some reduced calorie cheese chunks in your chopped vegetables to increase the calcium as well as protein content of the salads.
9.  Herbs and low calorie dressings - Choose fresh herbs from your garden and low fat dressings for your salad like basil, parsley, saga, dill, thyme, mint, lemon juice and vinegar instead of heavy fat dressings.
10.  Low fat drinks - Generally we tend to drink sweetened and creamy coffees, teas, sodas and smoothies in summer to such an extent that we forget about the calories we take in. Remember, any liquid will only help to quench your thirst and not your hunger. So choose wisely –orange dream float, root beer and ice skim latte are some good choices.
11.  Fruit based desserts - Forget your creamy heavy desserts, instead satisfy your ferocious sweet tooth with healthy fruit based desserts.
12.  Low calorie desserts like dark frozen sweet cherries, frozen grapes, chocolate covered frozen banana, grilled blackberries with white peaches and honey, grilled pineapple with pecans and rum, low fat fresh fruit ice creams and grilled banana sundaes made from low fat ice creams are also some good summer food choices.
13.  Try low fat fresh fruit yogurts and low fat fresh fruit custards for protein and calcium in your diet.
14.  Get your vitamin A and lycopene dose from tomato sauce, tomatoes, ketchups, papaya and peppers.
15.  Save the apples, bananas and oranges for the fall, instead satiate your appetite on a variety of fresh summer fruits like different berries and melons.
16.  Try different summer vegetables like zucchini, greens, tomatoes, pea pods and beets which are not only super nutritious but also low in calories.
17.  Cool cucumber - Cucumber is rightly called cool as it is about 20% naturally cooler than other vegetables. A chilled or fresh cucumber slice in your salads or vegetables can be truly refreshing.
18.  Mangoes - This fruit is available only in summers and is loaded with beta carotene, vitamin C and fiber.
19.  Berries are tasty, tangy and convenient little summer fruits which can be easily blended with yogurts and smoothies.
20.  Spinach and other summer greens like kale, romaine lettuce, bok choy are some other healthy food choices.
21.  Cottage cheese can be a prudent substitute for yogurt and regular cheese. Cottage cheese like the other two is loaded with proteins and calcium.
22.  Walnuts - Try to include a small handful of healthy nuts including walnuts. Walnuts are a good source of heart healthy omega-3 fatty acids.
23.  Oats - Oats are rich in fiber and also provide a good amount of proteins. They can be an excellent choice for your morning cereals.
24.  Whole cereals, grains and its products - Ditch the refined ones and go for the whole options.
25.  Beans and legumes - Substitute animal protein (mainly red meats) with beans. This change can not only add fiber to your diet but also help lower total calories, cholesterol and saturated fat from your diet.
26.  Greasy and fried foods can actually increase the thermal effect of your system causing discomfort. So summer is the best time to avoid junk and fried foods.
27.  Fish - Fish is an excellent source of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Go for grilled or broiled fish instead of fried fish.
28.  Carrots are rich in vitamin A and heart and skin healthy carotenoids. Especially great for your eyes.
29.  Red, orange and yellow vegetables like pumpkin, butternut squash, potatoes, sweet potatoes and peppers are loaded with vitamin A and vitamin C, vital antioxidants.
30.  Water - Lastly nothing can be as refreshing and satisfying as a glass of water on a hot summer day. Keep yourself well hydrated.

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

6 Kettlebell Workouts

As seen on SparkPeople. com these kettlebell routines are just like fashion trends they come and go, same can be said about workout trends. Hundreds of years ago Russian bodybuilders were using cannonball-like equipment for strength training. Little did they know then that their workouts would be turned into classes in gyms across the globe 300 years later. The reason kettlebell workouts are so popular is they provide strength training, cardio, balance and flexibility all in one short workout.
In the January 2011 issue of Fitness magazine, John Porcari, PhD, an exercise researcher at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, stated that "an intense 20-minute workout with kettlebells burned on average, an astonishing 400 calories, or 20 calories a minute."

If you have never used kettlebells, you may want to check with your local gym or Y to see if they offer classes for beginners led by a certified kettlebell instructor as form and technique are very important when doing this type of workout routine. Poor form and technique can lead to injury and you may not get the results you expect.

One of the biggest advantage with kettlebell workouts is they tend to target all the major muscle groups during a workout which is why I have included workout routines in place of individual exercises for this week's fitness round-up.

FITNESS Magazine Kettlebell workout
PREVENTION magazine kettlebell workout                            

Friday, 24 May 2013

100 Healthy Breakfast Recipes

  • Breakfast is one of the most important meals of the day. We should actually eat a larger breakfast than dinner. The reason makes sense once you think of it. Sort of like a vehicle you are going to drive around in all day. It's easier on you if you fill up the tank before the journey begins...You also want to fuel your body in the morning so your 'tank' is full when you need the energy throughout the day...Eating a large meal before you park your butt at the end of the day then means the food gets stored as fat because you're body thinks you might need it later. It's food for thought ;)

  • Below are 100 different recipes so you will never be bored with your breakfast! Just click on the picture or the food name to go to the recipe.

  • Raspberry-Cream Cheese Muffins RecipeRaspberry-Cream Cheese Muffin