200 calories or less: snack ideas

First I would like to share some tips on healthy snacking:

  • Serving size is important – calories can add up easily
  • Try to include protein – dairy, nuts, beans, etc

  • Cook and freeze a big batch of beans so they are readily available
  • If you are still hungry after the snack – munch on raw veggies
  • Eat a healthy snack between your lunch and dinner, so you don’t over eat at dinner time

cherries

2 low-fat string cheese (50 kcals each) and 1 cup of fresh fruit

¼ cup hummus and veggies (carrot/celery sticks)

Low-fat yogurt with 1 cup of fresh fruit

A small apple with 1 Tbsp of nut butter

½ cup of chickpeas mixed with 1 cup of plain non-fat yogurt

 1 whole wheat bread with 1 Tbsp of nut butter

Non-fat Greek yogurt (6 oz) with 6 almonds

½ cup non-fat cottage cheese with 1 cup of fresh fruit

1 cup of kidney beans topped with chopped onions, tomatoes, cilantro, lemon juice, and salt

Does Mediterranean Diet work?

People of Mediterranean countries like Greece and Italy have healthy hearts and low rate of cardiovascular disease which is because of the Mediterranean eating pattern.

What is Mediterranean Diet?

The focus is on intake of fresh homemade meals consisting of: whole grain breads and pasta, fish instead of red meat, grilled and steamed food instead of fried, beans and soybeans, non fat or low fat dairy products and use of olive oil which contains monounsaturated fat.  It encourages whole grains, fruits and vegetables that provide fiber, and fiber improves motility and satiety. Refined sugars and high calorie processed foods are prohibited.

Ancel Keys, a nutrition expert, writes that the “heart of the diet is that it’s mainly vegetarian, includes far less meat and dairy than American and Northern European diets, and uses fruit for dessert” (Harvard Health Letter, 2008).

A diet rich in soy and whey protein, found in ...

Does it work?

Mediterranean diet works because it is not considered a strict diet but more like a lifestyle modification and the person can enjoy different variety of foods.

Is Weight-loss likely?

This is not a low carbohydrate or a low protein diet. It is a balance of nutrients to ensure health, weight loss and satisfaction because there is no elimination of major food groups but only saturated fat, trans fat and processed foods are discouraged.

Baked Tilapia for desi taste buds

Why should I eat fish? It is a good source of lean protein and contains omega 3 fatty acids – good for the heart!

What is the recommendation? Eat 2 servings of variety of fish/weektalapia 2

What do you need for this recipe?

  • 5 Tilapia pieces (~4 oz piece)
  • 2 tsp Red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp Tumeric powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 2 tsp Garlic paste
  • 1 large lemon

Use the lemon juice to mix the seasonings. Use more if the lemon is not juicy enough to make a seasoning paste. Pat dry the defrosted tilapia. Rub the seasoning on the fish.

Preheat the oven to 350. Place fish on baking tray lined with aluminum foil and ligtly sprayed with oil (or it will stick to the pan)

Bake for 25-30 minutes or as needed.

Calories- approx 130 calories/fish 

Protein- approx 22 g/fish

Next time I will try this recipe with other type of fish.

One healthy tip at a time!

One healthy tip at a time!

Find out ways to add physical activity to your daily routine!  Some suggestions from America on the Move include:

1. Circle around the block when you go outside to get your mail

2. Make several trips up and down the stairs doing laundry or other household chores

3. Walk during lunch break and encourage your coworkers to join you

4. Avoid elevators and escalators

5. Visit the restroom on the far side of the building

Also, check out letsmove.gov

My Plate vs. My Plate

I know it’s not easy nor is it fun to count calories – you just want to enjoy the meal! USDA came out with the My Plate few years ago and I believe it is a great guide to eating healthy. It gives a quick visual of how our plate should look to be on the right track. It teaches us to enjoy a variety of foods in proper portions!

I decided to compare USDA My Plate with my plate. This is what it means to “Eat Right,Your Way, Every Day” – enjoy your cultural foods in moderation!

myplate

My Plate 1 labeled

  • Made half my plate fruits and vegetables
  • 1/4 of the plate was karhai chicken (lean protein) – popular dish in South Asian culture
  • 1/4 plate was nan – bread common in South Asian culture
  • Dairy – I did not have it at lunch but I did at breakfast

What one change would I try to make next time?

  • Make my bread whole grain

Theme for National Nutrition Month 2013 is “Eat Right,Your Way, Every Day

Related articles

One healthy tip at a time!

One healthy tip at a time!

As I was trying to find parking at the movie theater, my younger cousin says, “We should park farther from the entrance and just walk to get some exercise.” It was very exciting to hear his enthusiasm about staying active. Being physically active doesn’t mean you must go to the gym – find out what works for you and how you can burn some extra calories throughout the day.

My WIC experience

Part of my dietetic internship was to rotate through the City of Houston WIC program. WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) is a government program for low-income population.  I always thought WIC program was same as food stamps through which participants can buy whatever they want, such as sodas and chips.

BUT it’s not. WIC is supplemental program run by the government for women, infants and children under 5 years of age that provides nutritional support for healthy growth through nutrition education classes, one-on-one counseling sessions, and monetary benefits to buy healthy foods.

The guidelines are very specific to what and how much the clients can purchase with the WIC issued EBT card. Clients receive a list of specific amounts of food to purchase per month. The card does not work for groceries not “loaded” onto the benefits card. The client must visit a WIC clinic every 3 months to receive nutrition counseling and renew their benefits.

 WIC clients cannot purchase:

Many processed cheese such as Velveeta, added sugar products, white rice, white potato, frozen french  fries, artificial sugar products, desserts, white tortillas

Only 100% fruit juices, 100% whole grain, fresh fruits and vegetables, and natural foods are allowed to be purchased with the WIC EBT card.

I was impressed!

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