Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Turning Over a New Leaf... then eating it.

It's that time of year. Time to make some changes for the better in the eating department. The fall and early winter are always a time to enjoy all the deliciousness of the season. I won't say that we Overindulged but we certainly didn't eat cautiously. There weren't too many calories counted. Now, however, I'm ready. Other than Valentine's Day, I'd like to get on board the healthy train. So, if you've got any ideas for some delicious recipes to try- please post them in the comments below. I'd love to know what you're cooking up!
We always joke at home about "No Boxes were harmed in the making of this dinner!" That's one good way to figure out what to eat. At the grocery store, if you plan your shopping around the perimeter of the store- imagine you're taking the longest route to get to the checkout- this is where you'll find the healthiest choices. Produce is followed by "health food" (natural food section), the bakery, cheeses, seafood, meats, eggs, dairy and you're back at the front of the store. If you make it into the frozen section for whole fruits and vegetables, then come out through the coffee and tea aisle, you've hit all the major places to shop healthily.
Here are my basic rules for shopping:
1. Buy Fresh-your refrigerator should be stocked with things that will go bad within a week. buy only what you need- what you can reasonably use. If an ingredient is getting to its 'eat me by the end of today' date- use it or freeze it.
2. Buy whats in season. Buy at the farm or farmers market first. They will have bunches of the fruit and veggies when they are harvested. They might even be on sale. Use it or preserve it.
3. Buy food that is as close to its original form as possible. This means buy apples instead of apple snacks. buy fresh fruit and vegetables not their processed cousins.
4. Count the Ingredients- the fewer the better: if you find a food you'd like to purchase, look at the ingredient list. Only buy foods that have items listed that you can buy elsewhere in the store. ie: if you've never heard of an ingredient or you can't pronounce it, its probably not a good thing to be eating at all.
5. Frozen and Canned in many cases are better than none. If you have frozen or canned your own- use that first. When you run out, be sure to read the labels at the store. Remember #4.
6. Make a plan. It's so much easier to get through the week if you have a plan for dinners -keeping in mind that if you make enough you can freeze it for another night or save it for quick lunches to take with you to work/school.
7. Eat when you're hungry- but make choices ahead of time about what you'll be eating. Keep apples, pears, oranges, carrots, celery, edemamme and other fresh fruits and veggies available. While you're cooking dinner, have these nearby and ready to eat so you've got something to munch on. When you're ready to eat dinner. Sit down and enjoy it.
I just found a blog that redefines food- just like I do. Check her out here. She's got lots of good ideas!
If you're craving some exercise- check out this dance routine to get your toes tapping! Patrick and Natasha have been working hard to collect clips and instructional videos to keep the world Lindy Hopping in style. They are incredible!

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