Healthy For Life - Blog Roll
When you’re following one of our low carb diets or weight management programs, it’s important to consume lots of protein, preferably the lean kind. It’s essential for building lean muscle mass, repairing muscles after exercise and promoting healthy digestion.
While lean chicken, pork and grass-fed beef are good mainstays, there are also plenty of other sources that are perfect for those following low carb diets or weight management programs. The following foods are packed with protein as well as some of the essential nutrients our bodies need to function properly.
1. Chia seeds. One eight-ounce serving contains a whopping 4.4 grams of protein. More importantly, these tiny little seeds are considered a “complete protein,” which means they contain all of the nine essential amino acids our bodies need. In addition, they’re packed with fiber, calcium, magnesium, manganese and phosphorus, among other nutrients.
2. Pumpkin seeds. Pumpkin seeds are a great source of protein—there are 14 grams in a half cup serving. They are also an excellent source of magnesium, zinc and plant-based omega-3s. Pumpkin seeds are also a good source of tryptophan.
3. Lentils. These tiny beans boast 22 grams of protein per eight ounce serving. Legumes are also loaded with fiber, copper, phosphorus, manganese, folate and iron. Their rich nutrient content makes them an excellent option for vegetarians and vegans.
4. Flax seeds. In addition to being a complete protein, flax seeds are packed with omega-3 essential fatty acids, the healthy fats that promote cardiovascular health. They are also a good source of both soluble and insoluble fiber and lignans, which boast plant estrogen and antioxidant qualities.
5. Kefir. This yogurt-like drink is packed with both protein and probiotics, the live, good bacteria cultures that promote healthy digestion and are very beneficial to our systems. Kefir is also a good source of calcium, tryptophan and several B vitamins.
This Asian-inspired low carb ahi salad is super popular among members of our weight loss clinic because it’s refreshing and delicious yet perfect for diets and weight management programs. It’s fast and easy to make but packed with taste—the whole family will enjoy it, whether or not they’re watching their weight.
Ahi tuna is an ideal food for a high-protein, low diet. In addition to its high protein content, ahi is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are excellent for a healthy heart, as they are linked to a lower risk of atherosclerosis, high blood pressure, heart arrhythmia and cardiovascular disease. Ahi is also packed with B vitamins that are essential for appetite control, healthy digestion, neurological function and a good metabolism. It contains vitamin D and an array of important minerals, such as phosphorus, magnesium and potassium, as well as other trace minerals. Ahi is a also a good source of a unique form of selenium called selenoneine, which is a powerful antioxidant that combats free radical damage.
The zesty flavors in this recipe make it a favorite at our weight loss clinic because the spices also boost our metabolism and boast a variety of antioxidant benefits. Who knew that a meal could taste this good and be a part of low carb diets and weight management programs?
32 ounces of sushi grade ahi tuna
4 cups baby spinach
Zest of 1 lime
½ cup fresh lime juice
½ cup red bell pepper
½ cup freshly grated ginger
½ cup scallions, diced
1 tsp Wasabi powder
2 tsp low-sodium soy sauce
Himalayan sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Boil a pot of water with a dash of salt. Add ahi to the water and reduce the heat to medium or medium low. Cook for approximately 12 minutes. When the ahi is done, put it on a cutting board and let it cool for approximately five minutes. Slice it into bite size pieces. Put the baby green spinach in a bowl and add the ahi, scallions, red bell pepper and ginger.
Combine the lime juice, lime zest, wasabi powder and low-sodium soy sauce in a dressing bowl and season with Himalayan sea salt and pepper. Drizzle the dressing over the top and enjoy!
Labor Day is here—and if you’re heading to a holiday party or barbecue today, you can still stay on track with your diet and enjoy yourself. Here are a few tips that our weight loss physician recommends for enjoying your holiday without overdoing it.
1. Hydrate like crazy. If you’re a member of our weight loss center, this is a tip you probably hear often. That’s because hydration is a critical part of weight loss. Often times, we mistake thirst for hunger, so if you stay hydrated, you’re not going to eat mindlessly because you think you’re hungry when you’re not. Water helps fill you up and flushes the toxins from your system, so drink lots today to help you stay on track.
2. Get moving. Are any of the guests playing a sport at your event? If so, join in and burn some extra calories. If you’re hitting a more formal event, take a walk before you get ready or even hit the gym if possible.
3. Make a contribution. Bring a healthy, low-carb item to contribute to the spread. That way, you’ll know there is at least one thing on the table you can eat without sabotaging your diet. If you don’t have any ideas, check out some of the delicious low carb recipes on our blog that our weight loss physician and members have shared.
4. Hit the grill. Grilling is one of your healthiest options when it comes to barbecues, as it keeps fat to a minimum without sacrificing taste. Look for lean protein sources such as skinless chicken breasts, vegetable skewers and lean turkey burgers.
5. Avoid mayo and fattening sauces. Pass on the fattening potato salad made with mayo and other fattening sauces and condiments. You’ll save so many calories and won’t miss much.
This delicious and refreshing low carb salad is perfect for summer and very popular among members of our weight loss center. It can be served as an appetizer or entrée for lunch or dinner—either way, it’s extremely satisfying and will keep your appetite in check.
Shrimp is an excellent source of lean protein, which is critical to the success of diets and weight management programs. We always recommend lean protein to members of our weight loss center because it satiates the appetite and promotes healthy digestion. In addition, shrimp is rich in zinc, which boosts levels of leptin, a hormone that affects appetite, fat storage and energy expenditure. Shrimp is also loaded with vitamins D and B3.
Avocados are considered a superfood because they are packed with fiber and more than 25 essential nutrients, including potassium, copper, iron, magnesium, phosphorus and protein, as well as vitamins A, B, C, E and K. In addition, they contain several important phytochemicals such as glutathione and lutein. Spinach is also fiber-rich and loaded with an array of beneficial nutrients, making this dish a true nutritional powerhouse.
2 ripe Haas avocados
1 lb cooked shrimp, deveined and tail removed
4 cups baby spinach
4 Tbsp lime juice, freshly squeezed
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
Himalayan sea salt to taste
Mix all the marinade/dressing ingredients in a bowl. Set ¼ of the marinade aside and pour the other ¾ over the shrimp in a container that can be sealed. Stir to make sure that all the shrimp are fully coated. Seal the container and refrigerate for a minimum of one hour, preferably three or four.
When you’re ready to prepare the recipe, wash and dry the spinach and divide among four plates. Cut the avocado into small, bite-size chunks and add to the spinach. Top with the shrimp. Drizzle the leftover dressing over each plate and enjoy!
When you’re trying to lose weight and achieve better health and nutrition, snacking can be detrimental—especially when you choose the wrong type of snacks. Snacks loaded with empty calories such as candy, chips, crackers, cookies and baked goods, can all be disastrous to your diet, even if all of the other meals you eat throughout the day are healthy and low in calories. If you opt for low carb choices like the ones recommended by our weight loss doctor, you’ll stay on track and have an easier time reaching your weight loss goals.
Try some of the low carb snack ideas listed below and send us your favorites!
1. Vegetables and hummus. This snack is a great way to consume excellent nutrients while packing some hunger-satiating protein from the hummus as well—perfect for those trying to achieve better health through nutrition. Cut cucumbers, celery, radishes or carrots into wedges or sticks and start dipping. If you opt for cucumbers, don’t peel them—some of the most beneficial nutritional content in cucumbers are found in their skin.
2. Shrimp cocktail. Shrimp is an excellent source of protein, vitamin B3, vitamin D, zinc and selenium. They are a carbohydrate-free food and are rich in the hormone, leptin, which is critical for regulating appetite, fat storage and our body’s expenditure of fat. The iodine content in shrimp also helps regulate the thyroid gland, which in turn controls our basal metabolic rate. A sluggish thyroid can seriously hinder weight loss.
3. A quarter cup of nuts. Nuts are a great source of monounsaturated fats, aka “healthy fats” and fiber, which are both excellent for heart health and help decrease the risk of developing blood clots. Research shows that their healthy fat content can help lower the LDL, aka “bad,” cholesterol levels that are the primary causes of cardiovascular disease. In addition, nuts are very hunger-satiating. Our weight loss doctor recommends unsalted walnuts, almonds, cashews, Brazil nuts and pecans. Just don’t overdo it—a quarter cup is an ideal portion size.