Did the top of your salt shaker fall off and dump a load of salt into the fabulous dinner you were making for your dinner party? Did you misjudge how much salt was needed for that huge bag of spinach that’s now wilted down to 1 cup in your pan? Did a favorite blogger’s recipe steer you wrong? No matter how things went wrong, there’s no need to dump your recipe into the garbage. It’s quite easy to fix an overly salted dish.
Not all recipes call for two cups of pumpkin. How annoying is that? The last time I was left with pumpkin in the can I decided to use the rest of the pumpkin throughout the week and I came up with twelve delicious ways to use leftover pumpkin puree. I came up with a few full on recipes which will be in my gluten-free and Paleo cookbooks but I did want to share with you all some quick and easy ways to use leftover pumpkin.
Note: I’m talking about plain pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling which has seasoning and loads of sugar added.
Chili: add one tablespoon per cup to any chili, canned or home made.
Tomato Soup: add a tablespoon of pumpkin to each cup of tomato soup.
Pumpkin Spice Latte: I could tell you to stir a tablespoon or two along with a large pinch of pumpkin pie spice into your latte (and you can) but if you’re really into Pumpkin Spice Lattes and especially if you’re hooked on Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Lattes you’ll want to check out this recipe from Eating Bird Food. I love that this recipe is so healthy. I can feel even better about not standing in line at Starbucks.
Fruit Smoothie: add a tablespoon or two to a fruit smoothie. Pumpkin goes especially well with apple, peach, or pear smoothies. Add some ginger or pumpkin pie spice for a holiday flavor.
Pumpkin Creamer: Sally’s Baking Addiction has a seriously awesome recipe with vegan options.
Pumpkin Pancakes or Waffles: stir up to 1/2 cup pumpkin into your pancake or waffle batter.
Pumpkin Pudding: mix 2 tablespoons to 1/4 cup pumpkin into 1 cup of cream cheese, Neufchatel cheese, or mascarpone cheese. Sweeten with your choice of sweetener and 1/2 to 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice.
Pumpkin Nut Butter: mix up to 1/4 cup pumpkin with 1 cup nut butter. Use as is or sweeten to taste with honey, maple syrup or your sweetener of choice.
Pumpkin Hummus: stir some pumpkin into hummus.
Pumpkin Oatmeal: add a tablespoon or two to your morning oatmeal.
Pumpkin Mac n Cheese: stir up to 1/4 cup pumpkin into your kiddos’ mac n cheese.
Replace eggs and oil in baked goods: You can replace both eggs and oil with a 1:1 ratio of pumpkin when making brownies, bars, and cakes. For instance if a recipe calls for 1 cup of butter you can replace it with 1 cup of pumpkin. If a recipe calls for 4 eggs you can replace them with 1/4 pumpkin for each egg. You can even replace all of both the eggs and oil. You won’t get a strong pumpkin taste and if its a chocolate recipe you won’t taste it at all.
That’s all that I came up with this week and I’m not even slightly pumkinned out I’ll be adding pumpkin to lots of things over the next few weeks. I’d love to hear how you all use leftover pumpkin.
There’s nothing more frustrating than achieving a health or weight loss goal only to fall two steps back when you give into a craving. Wouldn’t you like to get rid of those traitorous cravings for good? These four tips, backed by research will give you just what you need to banish those cravings and keep them from sabotaging all your hard work.
Sweat It Out
“Aerobic exercise … strengthens the area of the brain responsible for dietary self-control,” says Peter Hall Ph.D His studies found that people with decreased activity levels craved more junk food.
Junk Food + Health Food = Satisfied
Serve yourself 1 part of the unhealthy item you’re craving and 3 parts of something healthy. For instance if you’re craving potato chips serve up 1/4 cup potato chips and 3/4 cup sugar snap peas, baby carrots or apple slices.
When You’re Really Hungry Eat Really Healthy
Studies show that what you eat when you’re REALLY hungry trains your brain to start to crave that food. So plan ahead for those times when you’re typically hungry such as a long day running errands, three hours after lunch … by having a healthy snack that you enjoy ready to grab.
Next time a craving hits distract yourself with a game that involves hand-eye coordinaation such as Candy Crush or Angry Birds. Just three minutes of game time will (this is a simplified explanation) crowd out the craving.
I kept the headline from each tip posted on my refrigerator for around a month, until they became second nature. Actually I had planned on keeping them posted indefinitely but after planning a dinner party I realized that I didn’t want to have to expose my guests to my junk food mantras so I took them down. I had intended to put them up again but found that I didn’t need to! Problem solved. Now if only I could come up with a solution for world peace 🙂
“Researchers found that participants who added half of a fresh avocado to their lunch reported a significantly decreased desire to eat by 40 percent over a three-hour period, and by 28 percent over a five-hour period after the meal, compared to their desire to eat after a standard lunch without avocado. In addition, they reported increased feelings of satisfaction by 26 percent over the three hours following the meal.”
I’d say it’s worth a try to see if it works for you. There’s so many ways to have avocado that you’ll never get tired of this creamy fruit!
Garnish a green salad.
Add to scrambled eggs or an omelet.
Garnish tomato or chicken soup.
Add to quesadillas.
Wrap prosciutto around a wedge of avocado.
Mash with a little lemon or lime juice and use in place of mayo on a sandwich.
Add to your morning smoothie.
Mash and add to chocolate pudding. This will also cut down on your sugar consumption since you don’t really need to add extra sweetener.
Use in place of up to 1/2 the butter in chocolate baked goods.
Top a baked potato with chopped or mashed avocado.
Add to homemade burrito.
Add to homemade California roll.
from my yet to be released 14 Days – Phase 2 – Low Carb Daily Eating Plan.
1 serving = 3.5 net carbs per serving
2 servings = 2 net carbs per serving
½ cup pork rind crumbs
1 teaspoon ground golden flaxseed
½ teaspoon mild chili powder
small pinch cayenne pepper
1 egg white
1 Haas avocado
Heat oven to 400°. Lightly oil 2 wire racks. Place on top of baking sheet.
In a bowl, combine pork rind crumbs, flaxseed, chili powder and cayenne pepper. In another bowl whisk egg until frothy. Cut Haas avocado into 8 wedges, dip each wedge in egg, press into crumb mixture and transfer to wire racks. Spray with vegetable oil cooking spray. Bake until crispy, 10 to 12 minutes. Season with salt.
Are you sold on adding an avocado to your daily diet? You can get even more avo recipes at Acapulcos Mexican Family Restaurant’s recipe page. Check ’em out, they have some really inventive ways to use avocados. You’d almost think they had an avocado farm with all of the ways they come up with to use an avo.
I don’t want my life to be all about food, menus and recipes. I want to be sure to exercise my spiritual, physical and intellectual muscles also. That way I’ll be setting goals and directing my sights towards things that will make me more fully me. Life if more than how you look in a pair of jeans – right?
Redefine what a snack means to you. A snack is something that satisfies that “I just need a little something” voice inside. It could be as unimaginative as raw veggie sticks or traveling a few rungs up the indulgence ladder to a mix of dried fruit with or with nuts and seeds.
Try to make your snacks something that will really give you a weight loss boost rather than something that’s high fat, high calorie, or on the UnDiet borderline.
To that end here are some things you can pick up at pretty much any grocery store that are a good idea to have on hand for the next time a snack attack hits.
- veggie sticks
- whole grain cereal
- whole wheat pretzels
- whole wheat toast with peanut butter
- Laughing Cow Cheese wedges to spread on apple slices, protein bread, celery sticks …
- boxed soups
- mini whole wheat pita stuffed with chopped salad
- refined sugar free yogurt
- spread a little mustard on thinly sliced turkey, ham, corned beef, pastrami, roast beef … roll and eat
- dill pickles
- pickled vegetables
- whole grain crackers
- Amy’s Organics crackers
- Amy’s Organics cookies
- roasted plantain chips
- dried kale
- hard boiled egg
Wear the most unforgiving outfit you have so that you won’t be tempted to overeat and let your tummy bulge be seen.
Every time you drink an alcoholic beverage at a party follow it with a glass of water, preferably ice water.
by Greg Landry, M.S., Exercise Physiologist
I receive a few hundred email messages every month with questions about pills and other potions to boost metabolism. I hope by now you know that “miracle fat-burners” don’t work. However, the need to boost metabolism is a legitimate one. I believe that the main reason so many people are overweight is because their metabolism is lower than it should be. This means that they burn fewer calories and over a period of months, this adds up to stored fat.
The good news is that you really can rev-up your metabolism so that you’re burning MORE calories 24 hours a day, yes, even while you’re sleeping! I developed the “Super Boost” to do just that. Now, I want to warn you that this is strictly for those who are VERY serious about weight loss and health and are willing to do what it takes! My “Super Boost” takes a major commitment on your part, but it works. It will send your metabolism through the roof! Please keep in mind that you should gradually work up to this frequency and duration of exercise and that you should see your doctor before making any changes in your eating or exercise habits. Here’s my “Super Boost” in a nutshell…
1. Do some type of aerobic exercise (walking, jogging, swimming, stationary cycling, aerobic dancing, etc.) on a DAILY basis (preferably in the morning) for 30 to 60 minutes! Forget this twice-a-week stuff. Your body was designed to be active on a daily basis! When you are, your metabolism will soar!
2. Do an additional 15 to 30 minutes of aerobic exercise in the evening, five days per week. Some people like to do this just before dinner to decrease their appetite, but after dinner is fine too. In the interest of injury prevention and not getting bored, try to alternate the type of exercise you do. For example, try walking in the morning and aerobic dance in the evening.
3. Incorporate “intervals” into most of your aerobic sessions. Intervals are a powerful tool to help boost your metabolism. They are explained in detail in my article “Intervals for Weight Loss”.
4. Tone your muscles with strength training six days per week. This should be done just after an aerobic exercise session. You should exercise each body part three times per week. For example, work on the lower body on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and the upper body on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
5. Always eat breakfast! Skipping breakfast sends the message to your body that you’re starving. As a protective mechanism, your metabolism slows down.
6. Look for situations to be active. Park as far from the store as you can rather than looking for the closest parking spot. Use the stairs rather than the elevator, a rake rather than a blower, etc. Look for the “hard” way to do things!
Okay, now get movin’ and supercharge your metabolism!
I want to thank Greg for contributing to our Update this month and let you all know that you can find more articles by Greg Landry as well as a free monthly newsletter at eDiets.com.
Research by the American Diabetic Association found that dieters who were not successful after numerous weight-loss efforts were drastically underestimating their calorie intake and overestimating their energy expenditures. Studies show that dieters who write down everything they eat consume less than those who don’t monitor their meals.
Now while us UnDieters don’t need to worry about calories, this research brings up an important point; we often see what we want to see. So a food diary can reveal errors such as not waiting long enough between a Protein and a Starch meal, improper food combinations, too much sugar, eating too much too late at night, etc.