Tag: wellness

Are We Vilifying The Holidays???

Are We Vilifying The Holidays???

This morning I prepared a cute little Christmas Tree plate for my son out of kiwi. Banana and strawberry. I absolutely love having fun with my food and shaping it into different things. Its so exciting to create healthy alternatives for the holidays. It’s also […]

The sweet truth about nutrition information

The sweet truth about nutrition information

Usually my blogs start out with some piece of Nutrition Misinformation that has been totally misinterpreted and this latest blog is no different. Recently I have heard a lot in the media about carbohydrates and fruit in particular. Anywhere from fruit is pure sugar to […]

Pancakes for Days

Pancakes for Days

Are pancakes not the ultimate comfort food?! Every Sunday my husband and I take time out to make breakfast (let me pause here to take a moment as writing husband is still exciting to me, only married a week here!). We love experimenting in the kitchen and breakfast is essentially our most favorite meal. It’s super important to pick a day of the week and give yourself time to really enjoy the whole process of preparing and eating a meal! Loving the art of nourishing your body is important as most people don’t take the time to sit down and really enjoy the taste of their food and appreciate the work that went into it!

Pancakes are delicious and they certainly seem like a treat BUT there’s a way to make them healthier without compromising taste or your brain’s need to indulge! So let’s get started as I share FIVE ways to make FIVE different and scrumptious types of pancakes!

The base of all of my pancakes is Gluten Free Bisquick mix (the regular one works too but as I have Celiac I have to opt for the gluten free one). I love using this mix because it already has all of the ingredients in the proper proportions. PLUS it makes the whole process move much more quickly. There is no need to measure out flour, baking soda and a million other things when you have a convenient mix already available! Work with what you have!

Most of my recipes center around one important ingredient, FIBRE. If you have read any of my other blogs you will know that fibre is so important in our diets and it’s also one thing that the majority of people do not get enough of. I never use maple syrup as a topping either. I always use low calorie vanilla yogurt as a topping because it tastes like icing and I usually sprinkle a Tablespoon of Chia seeds over the top for extra fibre.

So….let’s get on with the delicious recipes shall we…

Carrot Cake Pancakes (my personal favorite:))

Ingredients:

Pancakes

  • 3/4 cup Bisquick
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseed
  • 1 cup Milk (almond/soy)
  • 1 cup grated carrots (I use a cheese grater)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbsp canola oil

Cream Cheese Icing (or Vanilla Yogurt for a lower calorie/lower fat option)

  • 1/4 cup low fat cream cheese
  • 1 1/4 cup icing sugar
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract

*Follow the box instructions adding the grated carrot in last and cook on each side for approximately 2 minutes.

Banana Chocolate Chip

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup Bisquick
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseed
  • 1 cup Milk (almond/soy)
  • 1 large banana
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips

*I leave the oil out of this one as banana is a fat replacer and it decreases the fat overall

**Follow the box instructions adding the mashed banana in last and cook on each side for approximately 2 minutes.

Pumpkin Flax

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup Bisquick
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseed
  • 1 cup Milk (almond/soy)
  • 1/2 cup pureed pumpkin
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 egg

*I leave the oil out of this one as pumpkin is a fat replacer and it decreases the fat overall

**Follow the box instructions adding the pureed pumpkin in last and cook on each side for approximately 2 minutes.

Double Chocolate Strawberry

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup Bisquick
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseed
  • 1 1/4 cup Milk (almond/soy)
  • 1/2 cup chopped strawberries
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips (in batter or melted over the top)
  • 3 Tbsp cocoa
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbsp canola oil

*Follow the box instructions adding the chopped strawberries in last and cook on each side for approximately 2 minutes.

Blueberry Flax

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup Bisquick
  • 1/4 cup ground flaxseed
  • 1 cup Milk (almond/soy)
  • 1/2 cup blueberries
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbsp canola oil

*Follow the box instructions adding the blueberries in last and cook on each side for approximately 2 minutes.

So there you have it. Some amazing recipes to spice up your weekends! ENJOY!

Signing off,

Adrianna Smallwood, Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Expert

 

 

 

Please follow and like us:
5 Healthy Tips to Start Your 2017 Off With a Bang!

5 Healthy Tips to Start Your 2017 Off With a Bang!

Wow, 2017 is here already! Where did the last year go?! I think a lot of people are happy to see 2016 in the rear view mirror. So say so long and get on with the plan for this fresh New Year! A lot of […]

Tis The Season…To Eat And Be Merry

Tis The Season…To Eat And Be Merry

The holidays are coming! It’s almost December and I bet most people are struggling between making a New Year’s resolution to eat healthier in some capacity and tallying up the calories of all the food they will eat over Christmas.  I myself have made quite […]

Fruits and Vegetables: Getting to the root of the problem!

Fruits and Vegetables: Getting to the root of the problem!

Fruits and vegetables are full of tons of nutrients! Here in Newfoundland we have some of the lowest rates of fruit and vegetable intake and for sure a lot of different options aren’t readily available on this wonderful island we call a rock…BUT there are definitely ways we can get more fruits and vegetables into our diet! So why haven’t we? Let’s get to the root of the problem!

Firstly…before you get a chance to ask…”but what about all that stuff they said in the media lately about sugars and how we need to cut back because we are all consuming too much and it’s leading to obesity and other associated chronic diseases? I stopped eating fruit!” I will tell you. There is a huge difference between added, processed sugar and natural sugar! The biggest sources of added sugar are regular soda, sports drinks, fruit drinks, cakes and cookies, candy, ice cream and pie but there are also some products that are hiding added sugars and masquerading as healthy foods, these would be flavorings added to coffee and tea, cereals, flavored yogurts and granola or cereal bars. These are the products you need to be watching out for and cutting back on!

nutrtion-facts-fiberFruit is full of fibre, vitamins and minerals. Fibre is a complex carb and is still counted on your Nutrition Facts Table as a carb. Fibre however is not processed or broken down by the body so when looking at your Nutrition Facts Table it’s better to choose something high in fibre because the high carb count would be less likely due to added sugars! Check out my previous blog on cutting down on added sugar for more info (here).

Ok, so why the focus on fruits and vegetables?! Well, eating high amounts of fruits and vegetables is associated with lower incidence of some cancers and cardiovascular disease, PLUS it can be super helpful in maintaining a healthy weight or in assisting with weight loss. So many amazing benefits!

Now that we have all this info, how can you get more, how can you cook/prepare it, is fresh better than frozen?

Adding More Fruits and Vegetables to your diet (how much should I eat?):

  • Try to have a serving of fruit with each meal. Cut down on your portion of cereal and add fruit to the top. Berries, cut up banana and apple all make delicious toppings on cereal, oatmeal and pancakes!
  • Fruit is an excellent desert. You can still have cake on your birthday (and everyone else’s too) but try having fruit for dessert most days of the week.
  • Have a serving of vegetables with lunch and supper. 1 cup of raw vegetables and ½ cup of cooked vegetables is equal to 1 portion.
  • Visualize your supper plate, add your veggies first and try to fill half of the whole plate with veggies and then add your meat and starch/grain/carb afterwards.
  • Grate fruits and veggies and add them to your favorite baked goods. Zuchinni and carrot can be grated and added to muffins, cakes or breads. Fruit can be substituted for both oil and sugar. Cut the sugar content of any recipe in half and add pureed fruit like mashed banana or apple sauce.

How should you cook or prepare your Fruits and Vegetables?

  • Cooked or raw it’s really your preference!
  • Avoid boiling vegetables (unless you are making a soup or stew). A lot of the nutrients in vegetables are water soluble and get lost during the cooking process in the water which you then throw out.
  • Try steaming vegetables. Veggies like broccoli and green beans taste amazing steamed and it only takes 6 minutes total.
  • Roasted vegetables are also delicious. Veggies like broccoli and brussel sprouts lose their super strong flavor when roasted. Especially if you cook them along with potatoes and an onion, add a little oil and some basil and oregano! Roast them on 375F for approx 30 minutes! Turn halfway through.
  • Fry them in a frying pan for stir fry! Tip: Green veggies should be bright green, when they start to turn olive green they have been cooked too long and have lost some of the essential nutrients.

Is fresh better than frozen?

The Great Debate (after the added sugar fiasco of course). Newfoundland is an island so, much of our produce is shipped. Now the nutrients in vegetables and fruits break down over time. Each day after they are harvested they degrade and add handling and transportation to that…by the time the food gets to our plate a lot of the nutrients have been lost. Enter frozen and canned foods. Prior to being frozen or canned, produce is blanched. This means it is dipped in boiling water for a timed interval and then removed quickly and flash frozen or dipped in ice water to stop the cooking process. This blanching process is required to stop the enzymes present in produce which cause the produce to rot over time. Side note: the browning that happens to an apple after it is cut is an enzyme process. The blanching and freezing keeps the produce at the peak of their nutrition.  So…prepare yourselves for this…frozen fruits and vegetables can sometimes be a healthier option! If you don’t believe me I would encourage you to read some articles on the subject such as this one: here. This time of year makes it particularly important for this little tid bit of information because fresh fruit and veggies basically double in price during the winter.

Hopefully you’ve learned a little after reading this article! Fruits and Veggies are an important part of our diet. Eat more, experiment with new kinds and eat them the way you enjoy them!

Signing off,

Adrianna Smallwood, RD

Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Expert!

Please follow and like us:
Hold the Gluten

Hold the Gluten

Hey out there fellow Celiacs…or gluten intolerant readers as well! I have been baking gluten free for about 5 years now and I have had many successes…and failures…with my baking! I know it can be a struggle to find the perfect gluten free product that […]

Eating on a Budget

Eating on a Budget

Yikes!!! Did anyone see the new Newfoundland budget?! Probably a rhetorical question right? Here we are in Newfoundland trying to make the best of it. We’re already paying twice as much for food as most provinces and now we might have to pay more?! And […]

For The Love of Food

For The Love of Food

I began reading this book lately, it’s called “Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family. How to Eat, How to Raise Good Eaters, How to Cook.” I’ve heard so many great things about the author Ellyn Satter and this particular book has been on my reading list for quite some time…so back to the title of this book! I’m sure some of you may have rolled your eyes at the title? Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family…maybe you know how to cook, maybe you know how to eat. You’re alive right? So you’ve obviously been doing your job right. Wrong. Well maybe not everyone is wrong, BUT, as a society I think that we have lost the ideal of the happy, sit at the table, savor the food and enjoy the taste meal.

Ellyn says in her book:

Today’s eating habits are negative: Eating isn’t important. Time spent eating is wasted time. You should eat and do something else at the same time. Skipping meals is good. Not eating is a sign of superiority. Being offhand about eating is trendy. Being finicky is sophisticated. Then there are the negative attitudes about nutrition: I shouldn’t eat that. If it tastes good it can’t be good for me. Eating right takes all the fun out of food.

Ellyn is so right! As a test I opened up my Pinterest and typed in the word ‘diet’. Now, I consider diet to be what a person eats in total. The average daily intake of food. But what does Pinterest think diet means? Here are the first 6 things on the list:

  • Find the best diet plan for your wedding
  • February is national snack month
  • The Yes/No Foods list (my personal favorite)
  • 3 ingredient pancakes
  • 20 snacks that burn fat
  • 24 essential recipes for anyone on a low-carb diet

Now I’m sure if I opened Google or any other search engine or social media the top 6 things to pop up would essentially be the same.

As a Registered Dietitian I often get frustrated clients in my office. They have tried Weight Watchers, Herbal Magic, Detoxes, Various fat burning pills, diets of shakes and coffee, you name it, I’ve heard of someone trying it. Most people seem to be focused on one thing. The scale. Whether it’s weighing themselves or their food. I have had clients come into my office and display their phones with every piece of food that goes in their mouth accounted for, displaying their various electronics that track the calories that they’re burning and their weights meticulously written down 3 times a day. I understand it! People are frustrated. They want to be healthy and there are so many people out there promising quick fixes. Lose 20 pounds in ONE WEEK! Detoxify your liver and the weight will fall off! Weight loss is promised to be the miracle that will help you look better, feel better and cure all of your health problems. Do you know what the silent killer is? Stress!

Stress involves a whole body reaction or a physiological response and is caused by anything in our life that makes us feel threatened. This is sometimes called the fight or flight response because it gives us an adrenaline boost that can help you fight for your life or run like heck. Our body cannot tell the difference though and all kinds of situations put stress on your body. When you don’t eat enough to keep up with the energy demands your body has just for everyday functioning, when you exercise for long hours every day and don’t replenish your energy stores, when you sit down after not eating chocolate for a whole month and you eat 3 chocolate bars at once and feel incredibly guilty. All of these things cause you stress because your body is an intricate system that works together. Why do you feel hungry? Because you need food. Why does chocolate smell so good if you’re not supposed to eat it? Because you should treat yourself!

So why am I focusing on stress? Because the hormone that your body releases during stress is called cortisol and this hormone functions to store fat. Now the pathway for this process is very complicated and I’ve oversimplified it here but the research shows that people who perceive themselves to have a lot of stress have higher weights and a higher waist circumference. (For example read here, here, and here)

I will give you an example. Most people restrict their intake of food in an effort to loose weight. They skip meals, eat smaller portions, stop eating when they are still hungry or they ignore hunger signals all together. What happens internally however is that your body stops trusting you and gets stressed because it thinks it’s never going to get food again. So what happens when you finally give in to that hunger craving? Your body stores every last bit of energy as fat in fear that you won’t give it anything again.

If I bring this all together, the most important thing you want is for your body to trust you. Listening to your body and feeding it when it’s hungry is important. Ignoring your hunger cravings doesn’t make you strong and giving in to your hunger cravings doesn’t make you weak. You want your body to trust you. Eat when you’re hungry, enjoy some chocolate or candy or whatever your “guilty pleasure” is. Ellyn says “If the joy goes out of eating, nutrition suffers”. At the end of a session with a client who is seeing me to loose weight I often make 2 goals (along with any healthy eating suggestions). The first is, until you see me again, please stop keeping track of the food you are eating every second. Eat your main meals and if you are hungry have a snack but don’t record it and secondly, do not weigh yourself until you see me again. Stop focusing on the scale at home and focus on how you feel. Is your goal to weigh less or is it to feel better? Because if your goal is to weigh less and you never get there and deprive yourself of every delicious thing in the meantime…what is the quality of your life really like? So, please, for the love of food, enjoy all food in moderation whether it’s apples and carrots or candy and chocolate. Having a healthy relationship with food means enjoying all foods.

***if you have a specific health condition or food allergy or intolerence that keeps you from eating a specific food or type of food that is a different issue and you should speak with a Registered Dietitian to insure you are not missing out on any key nutrients and continue to avoid eating the offending food or type of food. 

Please follow and like us:
What The Heck is a Dietitian???

What The Heck is a Dietitian???

I have been asked so many times ‘What is the difference between a Dietitian and a Nutritionist,’ but I hadn’t realized until this weekend past what it meant to people. I was speaking with a gentleman and the topics of our respective occupations came up. […]


Please wait...

Subscribe to our newsletter

Want to be notified when new recipes, blogs, workshops and more are published? Enter your email address and name below to be the first to know.

Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)