Tag Archives: Everyday Eating

How To Eat Like A Ballerina

You don’t have to be able to arabesque in pointe shoes to get the graceful, sculpted body of a dancer. What you do need: our fat-blasting Ballet Boot Camp Workout. Created by Sadie Lincoln, founder of Barre3 fitness studios, these quick-slim moves combine yoga, Pilates, light weights, and a secret weapon that in-the-know exercisers (including celebs like Ricki Lake) swear by—barre work. We know the plan works because we tested it on real women. For 25 days, they followed our Ballet Boot Camp plan, as well as Hot Body Eating Guidelines and Recipes, created by Andrea Nakayama, a functional nutritionist in Portland, OR (find them below!).

The results were astonishing: One tester lost 12.8 pounds (9 were gone after only 11 days!), another trimmed her hips by more than 2 inches and whittled her waist by 3 inches, and tough-to-change upper arms shrank by up to 1.5 inches! The group also saw improvements in posture, grace, and balance—even lower-back pain!

Lose weight and tone up like our testers by following this healthy eating plan.

Hot-Body Eating Tip No. 1: Wean yourself off sugar

Curbing your consumption will cut mega calories—1 cup of the sweet stuff packs nearly 800 calories—and speed fat loss by reducing insulin levels. Packaged foods, including everything from yogurt and cereal to baked goods and soda, often contain hidden sugar, so be sure to check labels (sucrose, fructose, and corn syrup are common sugar derivatives). Craving a treat? Grab some fruit or add a packet of stevia (a natural, no-calorie sweetener) to unsweetened Greek-style yogurt, tea, or coffee.

Hot-Body Eating Tip No. 2: Reach for water

Feeling hungry even though you know you’re well fueled? Stop and drink a tall glass of water and see if you can avoid that trip to the bakery or vending machine, says Nakayma: “It’s important to remember that you often think you’re hungry when you’re really just thirsty.” Aim to drink half your body weight, in ounces, of water each day. For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, drink 75 ounces—a little more than 9 cups—of water daily.

Hot-Body Eating Tip No. 3: Fill up on (healthy!) fats

Omega-3 fats, like the type found in salmon, olive oil, walnuts, avocados, and flax, hemp, and chia seeds, are good fats that are critical for brain and hormonal health, notes Nakayama. They also help keep you satisfied, so you’ll be less likely to snack between meals.

Hot-Body Recipes

Get-Up-And-Go Smoothie

Serves 2-3

¼ c chia seeds

2 c water or coconut water

8 pitted prunes (if hard, soak them overnight)

2 med frozen bananas

1 lg handful of spinach, chopped

2 Tbsp almond or sunflower butter

10-15 drops vanilla stevia or 1 tablespoon honey

Pinch sea salt

Dash cinnamon (optional)

If you don’t have a high-speed blender, pour the chia seeds into the water and allow them to sit there while you prepare the rest of the ingredients. This will soften them for blending. One by one, add the remaining ingredients to blender, blending between each addition separately so that you can achieve a smooth consistency. (If you have a high-speed blender like a Vitamix or a Blendtec, everything can go into the blender at once and blend on high.)

MYO Energy Bars

Yields 16 bars

Coconut oil, for greasing pan

1¼ c gluten-free rolled oats

1 c chopped toasted nuts (try combinations or full quantity of almonds, walnuts, pecans, peanuts, or macadamia)

¾ c combination of any of the following ingredients: ground flax seeds, oat bran, sesame seeds, ground coconut, raw wheat germ, or more ground nuts

1½ c puffed or crisped grain cereal without added sugar

1 c dried fruit (try raisins or juice-sweetened cranberries, coarsely chopped, or larger dried fruits such as apples, pears, dates, or prunes chopped into pieces)

1 tsp cinnamon

¾ c brown rice syrup or raw honey

¼ c nut or seed butter (almond or peanut butter or tahini or sunflower butter work particularly well)

1 tsp vanilla or almond extract

½ tsp sea salt

1. Grease an 8-inch square baking pan with the coconut oil.

2. Combine the oats, nuts, ground seeds or grain, cereal, dried fruit, and cinnamon in a large bowl. Set aside.

3. Combine the sweetener and nut butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Heat gently and stir until smooth. Turn off heat and add vanilla or almond extract and salt.

4. Pour liquid ingredients over cereal mixture and stir until well combined and evenly incorporated. Spread into prepared pan. Using wax or parchment paper, press mixture tightly into pan. (Take your time doing this and use a bit of force to really press out all the air bubbles and get the mixture as compact as possible.)

5. Refrigerate for several hours or over night before cutting into 16 bars.

6. Store in an air-tight container for up to 1 week.

Grain-Free Lemony Biscuit Scones

Yields 6

Dry ingredients:

1½ c almond flour

½ c ground chia seeds

¾ tsp baking soda

½ tsp xantham gum

1 heaping tsp cinnamon

Pinch salt

Wet ingredients:

1 flax “egg” (1 Tbsp flax blended with 3 Tbsp water)

2 Tbsp yacon syrup, coconut nectar or pure maple syrup

1 tsp vanilla

Zest of one lemon

1 Tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. Mix together dry ingredients in a food processor. In a small bowl, whisk wet ingredients. Add wet ingredients into the food processor along with the dry ingredients and pulse until combined.

3. Form into a ball of dough and place the dough onto the prepared baking sheet. With slightly wet hands, press the dough into an even circle, about ½ inch thick.

4. Score the scone circle into 6 even wedges.

5. Bake 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cut through the scored wedges to separate. Place back in oven for 2 to 4 more minutes to allow the edges of the scones to harden slightly. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly. Serve warm from the oven with glee!

Andrea’s Favorite Granola

3 to 4 cgluten-free rolled oats

½ cup raw sunflower seeds

½ c chopped nuts

¼ c sesame seeds

½ c Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, gently melted

1 Tbsp carob powder

1 tsp cinnamon

½ c dry coconut palm sugar or same amount brown rice syrup

½ tsp sea salt

Set aside any combination of the following:

½ c shredded coconut

½ c raisins

½ c chopped dates

½ c dried (fruit-sweetened) cranberries

1. Preheat oven to 350.

2. Mix together the oats, sunflower seeds, nuts, and sesame seeds in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, carob powder, cinnamon, sweetener, and salt. Add this mixture to the large bowl and combine well.

3. Spread the mixture evenly in a lasagna pan or on 2 flat cookie sheets, and bake for 15-20 minutes, until the top layer is browned. Then, flip/mix with a spatula and place back in oven for another 8-10 minutes. Remove from oven. The mixture will be moist, but will dry and harden as it cools. Mix in dried fruit ingredients and let cool, stirring every so often to prevent clumping. Store in an air-tight container.

** Alternately, you can place all initial ingredients in a slow cooker or crock pot overnight and add the fruit in the morning.

DIY Spice-Rack Chai

½ tsp ground turmeric

½ tsp ground ginger

¼ tsp cinnamon

⅛ tsp nutmeg

⅛ tsp ground cloves

⅛ tsp cardamom

Pinch of sea salt (optional)

¼ c warmed coconut milk

½ dropperful of vanilla liquid stevia

¾ c hot water or hot brewed rooibus tea

Add all powders to an 8-ounce tea cup. Pour in your warmed coconut milk and whisk to blend, making sure to dissolve any clumps. Add liquid stevia. Pour hot water over the top of the mixture. Carefully whisk, and enjoy.

How To Lose 92 Pounds

Robyn Endress
Ari Michelson

Last May, I woke up from a deep sleep, frightened. I have sleep apnea, and even though I was using a CPAP machine—which supplies my lungs with constant airflow—I woke up with heart palpitations and a crushing pressure in my chest. “I’m killing myself,” I said aloud. At that moment, I knew I needed to make a change. I was dealing with high blood pressure and prediabetes, and I weighed nearly 300 pounds.

I remember that awful night so vividly because the day before had been such a sweet one, literally. My older daughter, Isabelle, had a softball game, and my younger girl, Anastasia, and I picked up snacks to enjoy from the sidelines. I had a small worry that I was eating too much sugar, but not enough to stop me from indulging.

I’ll be fine; it’s just a few sweets, I thought. But I’d been telling myself the same lie for years, and as I lay in bed that night, I contemplated what would happen if I continued down that destructive path. You won’t be here, I told myself, and who will take care of Isabelle and Anastasia? I had adopted them as a single mom, and I needed to stay alive for my girls. It was time to take control.

The next week, I started a strict low-carb diet. I was losing weight, but my cravings were out of control. Then I saw a friend’s Facebook post that said Prevention was looking for women to test a new healthy eating plan called the Sugar Smart Express. I joined, and it ended up being one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. The entire program is geared toward helping you kick cravings for good. I was surprised that I could still eat carbs, but instead of junk, I was mixing unprocessed kinds, like bulgur and quinoa, with good fats and lean protein. My appetite leveled off, and my weakness for snacks disappeared. Within 9 months, I lost an amazing amount of weight—a total of 92 pounds and 16 inches! My energy soared, my blood sugar levels normalized, and I no longer needed a machine to help me breathe at night.

How far I’ve truly come crystallized a few months ago when I was having dinner with my family. My mother said that she feels like her daughter is back; the energy, vibrancy, and joy I used to have before struggling with my health and weight have returned. “For the first time in years, you seem happy,” she said. And I am.

Curb Your Bingeing

how to stop binge eating; doughnuts

You’ve just had a fight with your husband or mother. You head for the refrigerator and stick your spoon into a half-gallon of ice cream. Next thing you know, the ice cream is gone, and so is the cake that went with it.

So is everything else in the fridge. You’ve even licked the jar of chutney clean. Suddenly you find yourself en route to the supermarket for more. What’s going on?

You’re having an episode of binge eating—a bout of uncontrollable consumption driven by at least three emotions: depression, anger, and anxiety.

“When you’re bingeing, you’re out of control,” says Dori Winchell, PhD, a psychologist in private practice in Encinitas, California. “It’s not so much the amount or what you eat, but what it feels like. Is the food in control? After the first bite, can you stop?” If the answer is no, you’re on an eating binge.

It’s a vicious circle. You feel depressed, anxious, and angry, so you binge. Then you feel depressed, anxious, and angry about bingeing and despair of ever being able to stop. So you binge again, Dr. Winchell says.

Bingeing also can be triggered by starvation diets, says Jan McBarron, MD, a weight control specialist and director of Georgia Bariatrics in Columbus, Georgia. Living on small salads and water during the day, deprived physically and psychologically of sustenance, some women run amok in the kitchen at night. They try to fill the nutrition gap by eating everything in the house.

“Binge eating is a psychological disorder that usually has much deeper roots than a simple food craving,” says Mary Ellen Sweeney, MD, obesity researcher at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta.

“Binge eating is literally stuffing feelings down,” says Mary Froning, PsyD, a clinical psychologist in private practice in Washington, DC. As long as we’re eating, we don’t have to deal with feelings such as anger, anxiety, or depression, say doctors.


9 ways to deal with binge eating:

Stave off nighttime binges. On its simplest level, binge eating at night is often brought on by starving all day, says Susan Zelitch Yanovski, MD, director of the Obesity and Eating Disorders Program at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland. “Eat a sensible breakfast and lunch, and you’re less likely to clean out your refrigerator at night,” Dr. Yanovski says.

Do something. “Take your mind away from your forbidden food by focusing on something that takes all your concentration, like the Sunday crossword puzzle,” Dr. Winchell says. “Once your mind is engaged in a task that you enjoy and must pay attention to, you’re less likely to be fixated on food.”

Wait. If you feel the urge to binge, set the kitchen timer for 15 minutes and try to figure out what’s going on, Dr. Froning says. “Is anger or depression or anxiety making you want to stuff yourself with candy bars? If so, try to figure out why you feel so upset.”

Ask for help. Women almost always binge alone. With friends, you’d be able to talk out your feelings instead of eating them away. “So if you’re feeling down and you’re about to raid the refrigerator, call a friend first,” Dr. Froning says.

Forgive yourself. You didn’t start bingeing overnight, and you won’t be able to stop that quickly either, says Dr. Froning. Each small step that you take away from bingeing will help you feel better about yourself, but it can take a few years to change your behavior completely. “Forgive yourself in advance for slip-ups. And just remember: To succeed, the trick is to try and try again,” Dr. Froning says. [pagebreak]

Stop while you’re ahead. You couldn’t help yourself. You stopped at the mall and bought a 5-pound box of chocolates. Now you and the chocolates are home alone.

“Throw them out,” says Elizabeth Somer, RD. And while you’re at it, take a walk or call a friend so that you can think about something else. “Too late? Already ate half the box? Throw out the rest,” says Somer.

Savor something spicy. “Hard as you try, you just can’t binge on chili peppers and Tabasco sauce,” says Maria Simonson, ScD, PhD, director of the Health, Weight, and Stress Clinic at the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions in Baltimore. In fact, spicy foods fill you up faster than bland or sweet foods, and they may even help burn calories faster.

Record your indulgences. Even if you’ve just eaten the whole box of goodies, it’s not too late to do something about the binge, says Somer. Write down what triggered the binge, so that you can figure out what to do differently next time.

See a professional. If you feel you are a binge eater who can’t stop, see a doctor or counselor trained in eating disorders. To locate qualified professional help in your area, contact:

  • American Society of Bariatric Physicians
  • National Association of Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders
  • Center for the Study of Anorexia and Bulimia