February’s Recipes and Q & A Wrap-Up
Below you will find a list of all of the recipes and Q & A sessions from this past month’s newsletters. If you’d like to get these types of articles delivered to your email on a regular basis, please sign up for the Fit Facts Newsletter (and get a free e-report in the process!).
RECIPE: Chicken Burritos
If you are a burrito-fiend (like me), it can be hard to deprive yourself during a diet, but typical burritos are filled with fat and processed carbohydrates—a definite no-no while trying to lose body fat. Try this variation instead the next time you have a craving and rest easy knowing you’re still eating healthy! Let me know how you like them!
- 1/2 cup brown rice
- 2 cloves garlic; 1 smashed, 1 minced
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 pound (about 2 cups) frozen diced butternut squash, thawed
- 1 cup shredded skinless chicken breast
- 1 15-ounce can black beans
- 1 cup grape tomatoes
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
- 1/4 cup pickled jalapeno peppers, plus 2 tablespoons pickling liquid
- 4 8-inch whole-wheat tortillas, warmed
- 1/2 cup shredded fat-free cheddar cheese
- 1 avocado, sliced
- Plain non-fat yogurt or sour cream, for serving (optional)
Heat a medium skillet over high heat. Add the rice and smashed garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Add 1 cup water, season with salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Add the squash and reduce the heat to low; cover and simmer, undisturbed, about 25 minutes. Sprinkle the chicken over the rice mixture, cover and remove from the heat. Meanwhile, make the bean salsa: Drain and rinse the beans, quarter the tomatoes and chop the cilantro and jalapenos. Toss with the pickling liquid and minced garlic in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Stir the chicken-rice mixture and spoon it down the center of each tortilla, then top with half of the bean salsa and sprinkle with the cheese. Fold in the sides and roll up. Slice in half and serve with avocado, the remaining bean salsa and yogurt, if desired. Enjoy!
RECIPE: Blackberry Sorbet-Filled Lemon Cups
These things are ridiculously tasty, and have less than 50 calories per serving! Give them a try for yourself and let me know how you like it!
- 6 lemons, topped and hollowed
- 2 cups frozen blackberries
- 1/2 cup fat-free, sugar-free vanilla yogurt
- 1 1/2 tsp fresh-squeezed lemon juice
- 3 packets Splenda
Make sure to top the lemons from the stem-end about 1/5 of the way down the fruit. Cut a small piece of the peel off of the opposite end so the lemon sits upright. Use a spoon to hollow out each of the lemons, reserving 1 1/2 tsp of the juice. Place the lemon shells in a plastic bag and freeze for at least 3 hours. Just before serving, place the frozen berries in a food processor or blender and blend until finely-chopped. Add yogurt, lemon juice and Splenda, blend until combined. Spoon the sorbet into the lemon shells and serve immediately. Enjoy!
Q&A: Can I hit my goal of 50 lbs in a year?
I’ve been exercising at home with a personal gym, but I am not losing weight like the gym system advertised that I would. I even eliminated while flour/sugar from my diet but still haven’t lost any weight.
I have added some running to my workouts, but I don’t know what to do regarding my nutrition. I love fruit for breakfast, but usually go long stretches during the day without anything to eat. Usually 8-9 hours, but sometimes up to 10-12 hours. When I get home after work I am starving and usually make bad choices and eat too much.
I want to lose 50 pounds in the next 12 months. Can you recommend what I need to do to accomplish this?
Going long stretches without eating, as you’ve found, causes us to not only binge when we finally do eat, but we also tend to gravitate towards unhealthy foods as well. Eating 3 evenly-spaced meals with 2-3 snacks in between will allow you to practice portion control as well as ensure you make the proper nutritional choices regarding what to eat. Sticking to complex carbohydrates, lots of vegetables, moderately-high protein and healthy fats will keep you satiated throughout the day by providing bulk and slower-digesting calories.
Good snacks include fruit, vegetables, nuts, protein shakes and other easily-prepared items that you can grab in a pinch to keep your body fueled. Additionally, drinking a lot of water will help you control your appetite better, which can be critical for avoiding those late-night diet-busting binges (usually involving ice cream, pizza, and other terrible choices).
Finally, it also might help you to consult with a fitness professional to ensure that your fitness program is well-geared towards your personal goals. Hope that helps!
Q&A: Eating After 7 PM?
Is it true that you shouldn’t eat after 7 at night if you want to lose weight?
The idea that food eaten in the late hours of the day is more likely to be converted into body fat and cause a gain in weight is a prevalent myth in the fitness industry, but is just that—a myth. Our bodies are not on arbitrary time clocks that determine whether food is partitioned as fat or used for energy. What determines if we gain weight or not are the AMOUNT of calories we eat, not what time we eat them at. If we eat more than we burn, we will store the excess as fat, if we don’t then we won’t, it’s as simple as that. It doesn’t matter if those calories are eaten at 6 AM or 10 PM.
This measurement isn’t even very measurable on a 24 hour scale because the changes in the body over this time are so small. It’s better to measure the total calories over a week-long period and average them (by dividing the total by 7) to see what the daily allotment was. Assuming you stay within your target range, you should see no negative effects to your body composition from eating at night, or any other hour of the day.
Hope that helps!
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