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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Eating Out Healthy Style



We all love to eat out, though eating out and eating healthy don't always go hand in hand. However, you can still eat out and eat healthy you just have to be smart about it. There are many tips that you can use when it comes to eating out healthy style and it can all be done with very little sacrifice.




For Example:
  • Start your meal with a salad packed with veggies, to help control hunger and feel satisfied sooner.


  • Order an appetizer or side dish instead of an entrĂ©e.


  • When your food is delivered, set aside or pack half of it to go immediately, better yet ask the server to package half of your meal before it is brought to the table.


  • Resign from the “clean your plate club” – when you have eaten enough, leave the rest.


  • Request that the bread basket not be refiled or skip it all together especially if the bread is not whole grain.


  • Avoid buffets, and all-you-can-eat specials.
If you are looking for more tips or for tips for specific types of restaurants check out these web sites.

http://www.americanheart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=531

http://mypyramid.gov/tips_resources/eating_out.html

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

4th Weigh-In

The 4th Weigh Biggest Losers weigh-in is tonight (Feb. 24th) at the Utah Career College from 5:30 - 8:30 pm.

So far the total weight loss for the contest is 336 pounds! This week there has been another prize drawing and 4 winners will be announced!

See you there!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Come On Out the Weather's Fine!

While it is not Spring/Summer yet it looks like we are going to have some beautiful weather this weekend - so lets dust off those walking shoes and get some sunshine. Walking has been proven to lower cholesterol and blood pressure, reduce the risk of or manage type 2 diabetes and improve your mood. Grab a loved one, your favorite pooch, or your ipod and hit the pavement this weekend!

Let's Get Cooking!


Come to find out all of the Biggest Loses on the TV show have to do their own cooking! Plus cooking is the one sure way that you can know exactly what your food contains by way of calories, fat, sodium, etc. Not to mention cooking and eating at home is much cheaper then going out.

So its time to put on an apron, get out your wooden spoon, and get in the kitchen.

Listed below are links to simple healthful recipes you may enjoy:

If you make something healthful and would like to share it with your fellow biggest losers either leave a comment or email the recipe to SMaughan@slco.org.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Counting Calories

Many contestants have been requesting websites that count calories. So here are 4 different options for you.

http://www.thecaloriecounter.com/ - This free website is great for browsing the calories in all sorts of different foods or if you are looking to add different foods into your daily diet and wondering what the nutritional value it.

http://www.my-calorie-counter.com/ - Free website that allows you to look up and track your calories, fat, sodium, and carbohydrates as well as exercise on a daily basis. Best part of this website is it keeps an ongoing journal of your food intake and exercise. Some people may find this easier then using the food tracker, if that's you just print out the journal pages and bring them with you to the weigh-ins.

http://caloriecount.about.com/ - Free website that has a large data base of foods. On this website it is easier to browse for your food then type the specific food in.

http://www.myfitnesspal.com/ - Free website that you don't have to join to use. Website provides calorie content for food as well as calorie expenditures for exercise activities.

"Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out."

- Robert Collier

Go Nuts!

“Scientific evidence suggests... that eating 1.5 ounces per day of most nuts, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease.”





Good News - Nuts are good for you and studies have even shown them to be helpful when it comes to losing weight. However, it can be some what confusing determining how many nuts are in an ounce and what sort of nuts we should be eating. So lets take a look at some of the most popular nuts available.


So just how many almonds/peanuts/cashews etc. equals an ounce? Check out this PDF -
http://www.nuthealth.org/inside.pdf

If your looking to count calories, protein, fat and other nutrients you will want to print out this chart it will give the caloric break down to all of your favorite nuts.
http://www.nuthealth.org/nutrition/nutrient1oz.html


**When it comes to buying nuts look for raw-unroasted/unsalted nuts or dry roasted nuts. While the salted and honey roasted varieties are tasty they pack added sugar, calories and sodium that we don't need. You may want to try toasting you nuts at home on the stove if raw nuts are not your favorite!



Looking for more information on Nuts check out The International Tree Nut Council Nutrition Research & Education Foundation website at http://www.nuthealth.org/

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

3rd Weigh In


The 3rd Weigh Biggest Losers weigh-in is tonight (Feb. 17th) at the Utah Career College from 5:30 - 8:30 pm.




This week there has been another prize drawing and 5 winners will be anounced!

See You There!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Drum Roll Please...

Congraduations to the Biggest Losers of the week!
Men
Worth McCleery - lost 15lb
Roger Burdette - lost 10lb

Women
Cheryl Simpson - lost 9lb
Kelsey Clark - lost 9lb
The Total Weight Lost for first week of the contest was 264 lbs!!!
If you did not lose 9-15 lbs the first week don't fret! Any weight loss is a great accomplishment and keep in mind weight comes off at different rates for each person. Even if you have not lost a pound yet don't worry, just keep eating well and exercising and you will see results!
"No matter who you are, no matter what you do, you absolutely, positively do have the power to change."
-Bill Phillips

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Breakfast...


Do you think skipping breakfast will help you lose weight and win the contest, well think again! Breakfast truly is the most important meal of the day and research has shown that starting your day off right can help you drop pounds. When you skip breakfast your body is not producing the enzymes needed to metabolize fat to lose weight plus you're more likely to overeat at lunch and to consume more calories though out the day.


Not a Believer Yet? Check out these resources -





Hint-

Sometimes the morning rush gets the best of us and eating breakfast before we leave the house is not an option. That's why you need a contingency plan - try instant oatmeal! Next time you are at the store pick up a box of your favorite instant oatmeal packets, a package of disposable bowls and plastic forks - keep these items in your desk and the next time your in a rush have breakfast when you get to work.


Need more ideas for a healthy breakfast? Try these-

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Food Labels




Ever picked up a box of cereal and wondered "Is this good for me?" well the answer is on the box. The food label on each packaged grocery item contains a wealth of knowledge if you only know how to read it - And now is the time to learn how!

The following two great websites will teach you how to read food labels:


Once you have visited the sites put your new found knowledge to good use and take a trip to the grocery store!

2nd Weigh-In Tonight

The second Weigh Biggest Losers weigh-in is tonight (Feb. 10th) at the Utah Career College from 5:30 - 8:30 pm. This week there has been a prize drawing and 4 winners will be anounced!

See You There!

Utah Career College
1902 W 7800 So
West Jordan, UT
**West Building
5:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Monday, February 9, 2009

FAT - The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly

You may have noticed in your food tracker that was passed out at the 1st weigh-in a section to mark off servings of "Good Fats & Oil". You may have thought to yourself, "Wait, I thought fat was bad and grease was worse?", well your right but your also wrong. When it comes to fat things can get a little confusing so lets take a tour of whats out there, what we need, and what we should avoid.



The Good

Unsaturated Fats are considered good fats because they can improve blood cholesterol levels and stabilize heart rhythms, unsaturated fats are found in foods from plants, such as vegetable oils, nuts, and seed and are liquids at room temperature.

-Monounsaturated Fats: often found in canola, peanut and olive oils; avocados, and nuts such as almonds, hazelnuts, and pecans.


-Polyunsaturated Fats: are found in oils such as sunflower, corn, soybean, and flaxseed; and in foods such as walnuts, flax seeds, and fish. One polyunsaturated fat that has become popular in recent in years is Omega-3 Fats. The body can not produce these fats so they must come from food. Fish is rich in omega-3 fats and should be consumed two to three times a week.

It has been found that most people do not get enough unsaturated fats each day so a good rule of thumb is to choose unsaturated fats over saturated whenever possible.



The Bad

Saturated fat is considered a "bad fat" in that since the body makes it naturally we don't need to eat any of it. Saturated fat has undesirable effect in cardiovascular disease and also raises harmful LDL cholesterol.

While it is ideal to keep your intake of saturated fats as low as possible saturated fats are part of such foods as vegetable oils which are mainly unsaturated fats, so it is not possible to eliminated saturated fat completely from our diets. So keep in mind that most saturated fats are found in red meat, cheese, milk , and ice cream so eat them sparingly.

The Ugly

Trans Fats, also know as Trans Fatty acids, are made by heating liquid vegetable oils in the presence of hydrogen gas. Oils are hydrogenated in order to make them more stable and less likely to spoil. Trans Fats are commonly found in prepackaged baked goods, margarine, and fried foods. Trans Fats are worse on cholesterol levels than saturated fats and even a small amount of trans fats can have adverse health effects. On average a person consumes about 6 grams of trans fats a day and ideally individuals should not consume more then 2 grams a day. However, new labeling laws have gone into affect that require products that contain trans fats to be labeled appropriately.




3 Rules for Fats


1. Eliminate trans fats from your diet - read the food labels.


2. Limit your intake of saturated fats - cut back on red meat & full-fat dairy foods.


3. Eat one or more good sources omega-3 fats every day - fish, walnuts, canola or soybean oil, ground flax seeds or flaxseed oil.

Resources

http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/fats-full-story/index.html

http://www.mypyramid.gov/pyramid/oils.html

Saturday, February 7, 2009

The Goodness of Grains





Lets talk Carbohydrates! - In recent years Carbs have gotten a bad rap mainly due to several popular diets. However, carbs are not all bad or all good. Some carbs promote health while others, when eaten in abundance, can increase ones risk for diabetes and heart disease.







Carbohydrates are most commonly found in grains and grains are generally divided into 2 subgroups, Whole Grains and Refined Grains. Whole grains contain the entire grain kernel while refined grains have been processed to remove the bran and germ. Grains are processed to give the grain a finer texture and improve their shelf life. However, the processing of the grain removes dietary fiber, iron, and vitamins that are extremely useful to our bodies. Ideally all of our daily grains would be whole grains however that may be somewhat difficult, so the USDA recommends that half of all the grains we eat should be whole grains.





The amount of grains you need depends on your age, gender and level of exercise. This chart by the USDA is helpful in determining the how many servings you need.


http://www.mypyramid.gov/pyramid/grains_amount_table.html


You may also want to check out the MyPyramid.gov website (link below). This website provides great information regarding grains (& other foods), including what counts as a serving, info on nutrients and health benefits, as well as tips to eating more whole grains.

http://www.mypyramid.gov/pyramid/grains.html



You may also find this article from the Harvard School of Public Health insightful, it is tittled Carbohydrates: Good Carbs Guide the Way -

http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/carbohydrates-full-story/index.html


***Need a snack while you watch a movie this weekend? Try Popcorn - 3 cups air popped (no butter or salt of course) is one serving of grains and less then a 100 calories.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Caffeine

During the 1st weigh-in we received questions regarding many different topics and one of the questions we receive was regarding caffeine and how to quit.



Caffeine is one of those substances that has successfully infiltrated everyday life. In fact it is estimated that in North America between 80% - 90% of adults and children regularly consume caffeine. Caffeine is found in everything from coffee, tea, and soda to chocolate, gum, and even bottled water. While it has not been proven that caffeine causes significant life-threatening risks such as cancer and heart disease it has been linked to several health issues such as: increase in hypertension risk, decrease of liver function, tooth decay, addiction, anxiety, disrupted sleep habits, as well as interfering with weigh loss and decreased libido. While caffeine may not be something that you want or plan to quit it is wise to be educated regarding the amount you are consuming and possible side effects.



For more information follow this link:



http://www.caffeinedependence.org/caffeine_dependence.html#top



If you're interested in quitting or reducing your caffeine consumption you may find these links helpful. They discuss different ways to quit caffeine and what you can expect.



http://www.wikihow.com/Quit-Caffeine



http://www.wisebread.com/stop-being-a-slave-to-starbucks-how-to-quit-caffeine



If your looking for an alternative to the soda/carbonation that you crave. Check out Cascade Ice Sparking Water - with 2 to 4 calories a serving, no caffeine and flavors like Wild Berry, Pomegranate Berry, Raspberry Black Currant, Key Line, Lemonade, and Pink Grapefruit, you can have a treat without falling off the wagon.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Web Workouts

Need some help in the exercise department? Want a Personal Trainer? Too Expensive? Well check out this great website by the Utah Department of Health - it has workouts created by a certified trainer Brett McIff that will help you build strength and shed pounds. The website has detailed fact sheets, video demos of each exercise, along with advise on getting started. The best part is all of the exercises can been done in the comfort of your own home.



So whether you're a beginner or looking for ways to spice up your routine this website is for you!


http://www.checkyourhealth.org/pa/wow.htm

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Tonight is the 1st Weigh-In!

The first Weigh Biggest Losers weigh-in is tonight at the Utah Career College from 5:30 - 8:30 pm. Remember all weights are kept confidential and there will be no video cameras present!

Hope you are excited, we'll see you there!

Utah Career College
1902 W 7800 So
West Jordan, UT
**West Building
5:30 pm - 8:30 pm

Map

Monday, February 2, 2009

Gear to Get You Going

Let talk gear that’s not going to break the bank but will help you reach your fitness and weight loss goals.

Water Bottle: Now is the time to get a good water bottle and take it with every were you go. It is recommended that we drink 8 glasses of water a day, that is 64 oz of water each day which can be really difficult to get if we are not consistently trying. Water also aids in weight loss – water is a natural appetite suppressant and developing a good water drinking habit can help in achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight. In fact being dehydrated can make it harder to lose weight. So which water bottle do you buy? That depends on what you like so it is best to take a trip to your local sporting goods store to see what is available. However, if you’re looking for a bottle that you can keep on your desk day in and day out, that is BPA-free (BPA is a compound found in some plastic that is considered to be hazardous to humans) and affordable, check out these two options.

http://www.nalgene-outdoor.com/

http://www.camelbak.com/betterbottle/

Hint: Look for a bottle that is 32oz, that way you only have to fill it twice a day and you have had your 64oz, even better fill it with ice water and burn an extra 70 Calories.


Lunch Boxes: Often we find our selves grabbing a quick bite from a fast food restaurant or running to the vending machine for lunch. However, we can take control of our calories and make better food choices when it comes to lunch time. The key to being successful when it comes to lunch it to plan ahead: before you go to the grocery store make a list and make sure you add lunches to the list, then be sure to make your lunch the night before – this will save you time in the morning and money in the long run! The great thing is lunch boxes are no longer just for kids there are tons of new options that promote healthy eating and are inexpensive. Now is the time to do some Internet shopping and get yourself a new cool lunch container to aid you in your weight loss goals. You have to eat to lose weight!


Snack Baggies: Healthy snacks are vial to the weigh loss process; however, too much snacking can quickly become a bad thing. That is why the little snack baggies (half the size of a sandwich bag) are the perfect tool for healthy snacking, they hold just the right amount to give you a good 100 calorie snack but not so much that you over indulge. You can find these great little baggies in any grocery store and you may want to pick up a box.

Snack Ideas (100 Calories):
¼ cup raisins
28 grapes
1 cup blueberries
25 baby carrots
48 pretzel sticks
6 dried apricots
20 pickle slices
2 Tbs. pumpkin seeds
20-24 Almonds (160 Calories)
45-47 Pistachios (170 Calories)
Apple
Banana – medium
Orange
Low fat string cheese (check Calories)

Hint: Make your snack baggies for the rest of the week on Sunday and then only take what you need for the day with you.

Workout Tunes: Lets face it, exercise is much more enjoyable when you’re rocking out to good music. Unfortunately not all of our favorite music is going to get us pumped up and motivated during our workouts - there is nothing like a slow song to zap our energy. So, whether you use an iPod, Zune, diskman, walkman, or 8-track get a good exercise mix that will keep you motivated and enjoying your workout. If you need some help putting one together you’re in luck there is lots of suggestions just a click away – Google “workout music playlist” or “exercise music playlist” and have fun constructing your personal exercise album. You may also want to check out iTunes and other online music sellers, often they have exercise mixes available.


If you have questions, comments, or suggestions for blog topics please please please leave a comment!