Super Foods & Girl Scout Cookies!

Yep, it’s that time of year again.   Millions of girl scout cookies are now flooding our streets.  But don’t be confused by the title,  I’m not insinuating that girl scout cookies are a super-food… quite the opposite actually!  We’d probably have to detox on super-foods for a week to rid our bodies of the artery-clogging, thigh-sticking crap in those cookies.  I speak from experience, as I grew up a girl scout myself and love the darn things.  But after downing 8 little Samoas in the bat of an eye over the weekend, which cost me a whopping 560 calories / 28 grams fat / 40 grams sugar, I’m seriously focusing on those super-foods this week!!  

 girl-scout-cookies-calories

 

I found a very interesting blog on this subject, for anyone that’s interested, or just need a reason to say no to the alluring colorful box probably beckoning to you in your office right now… no doubt put there by someone trying to get them out of their house and push the calories onto someone else (guilty).    Here’s a thought, next time you see those cute little girls outside your local grocery or hardware store, give them $3.50 and ask them to donate the cookies!

 http://blog.fooducate.com/2011/02/11/lets-talk-girl-scout-cookies/

 

OK, now back to real Super-Foods.  I want to post more about this in a future blog, but first a question…

What do you consider your own personal super-food? 

Forget if it’s on the official list or not – what is your perfect food?  I think mine would have to be an apple, honey-crisp or pink lady to be exact.  It’s sweet and delicious like candy, full of fiber and other nutritious vitamins, fairly clean to eat, and easily portable for those on the go.  Plus, very yummy with combined with peanut or almond butter (almonds = super food all-star).  Speaking of which, that is one of my favorite business travel tricks… when you have your continental breakfast at the hotel, grab an apple and one of those little peanut-butter packs.  It makes for an awesome afternoon snack during the often 7+ hour lag between business lunch & dinner!

 

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More Workouts + More SuperFoods

I’ve really stepped up my workouts lately and thus have encountered a new problem – increased hunger!  I’m not sure why the proper balance of food and exercise is so difficult for me, but I can’t seem to get it right.  Just when I was getting in a groove with the Cinch 4-meal / 5-ingredient philosophy, my caloric needs have changed as my workouts have increased, and I need to figure out when and how to add more healthy calories into my diet.  Seems easy right?  I’ve added a small snack before my morning workout, and eat a full breakfast and lunch, but am still famished by late afternoon and end up overeating at night in my rage of hunger.

Hmm, what to do.  I will start by trying to add more healthy fats and fiber to my earlier meals and see if that helps.  It will also help that the junk food in my house is now gone and there isn’t much left for me to “splurge” on.  My favorite healthy-fat & high-fiber foods are below, along with recipes.  All of these items are also considered “SuperFoods”!

AVOCADOS– chopped in a wrap, as a topping, or even use in smoothies (max 1/2 avocado per day)

Avocado Banana Berry Smoothie (1 serving, great post-workout / high-protein snack.  There are several other avocado smoothie recipes in the Cinch book.)

  • 1/2 ripe avocado, halved, pitted, and removed from the skin
  • 5-6 strawberries, fresh or frozen, stems removed
  • 1/2 frozen banana
  • 1/2 cup skim milk or almond / soy / coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon honey or 1 tsp Truvia
  • Handful crushed ice or 4 ice cubes
  • Blend all ingredients and enjoy!
  • Nutrition: 300 calories, 17g healthy fat, 35g net carbs, 9g protein. 

 

BEANS– black, red, white, chickpeas… toss them on salads, in a wrap, in soups, or eat them plain.

Black Bean side dish (1 or 2 servings, depending on how you use it.  I make this often, sometimes as a side dish, to top a salad, or even throw in a wrap with avocado and shrimp.  You can also sub chunky salsa for the veggies)

  • 1/2 cup cooked black beans (low-sodium) 
  • 1/4 cup corn, cooked but still slightly crisp
  • 1/2 tomato, diced
  • 2 T chopped onion
  • 1 T fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 T fresh lime juice
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • Mix, chill, serve
  • (for an extra kick, add a little jalapeno or green chiles)

 

Black Bean & Mango Salad (6 servings)

  • 1 15-oz can black beans
  • 2 cups diced mango
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper, diced
  • 6 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves, chopped 
  • Mix and servce.  Makes 6 Servings. 
  • Nutrition: 140 calories, 3g fat, 19g net carbs. 

 

 OATSOld-Fashioned or Steel Cut are best, as they are less processed and do not spike your blood sugar as much as the quick-cooking variety.  But if you prefer softer, more gooey, oat products, the quick-cooking variety is OK.

Grab & Go Homemade Oatmeal (1 serving, no microwave required!  I make several and store them in my pantry)

  • 1/2 cup dry oats
  • 1/4 cup dried fruit and nuts (raisins, cranberries, chopped apricots, almonds, walnuts…)
  • 1 tsp flax or pumpkin seeds
  • Place all ingredients in a tupperware container at least 3x larger than the dry mixture
  • When ready to eat, add 1/4 to 1/2 cup of very hot water (such as the kind from a coffee machine) to the dry mixture, seal the top, and wait at least 5 minutes.
  • Remove the top, stir, and enjoy.
  • Nutrition: 200 calories, 7g fat, 39g net carbs. 

 

Click here for a LIST OF SUPER FOODS and their benefits.