Tips On Shopping Lists and Recipes For Weight Loss

Naturally, how we shop is going to affect how we eat. If you can restrict yourself to eating when you get home rather than buying fast food when you are on your way home, then you have much greater control of how healthy your food is going to be. Of course, this is going to break down if you go home to an empty refrigerator or when what you have in the refrigerator is unhealthy. I know there are going to be days when you arrive home and cannot summon up the energy to cook a full meal. Later, we will look at some tips for having healthy standbys that can just be popped into the microwave for a few minutes. For now though, we will look at what items you should have in the fridge, freezer, and cupboards.

As previously mentioned, it is important to have a shopping list before you go. If you have already drawn up a weekly meal plan, then having to make a list should not be too difficult. Remember to try not to shop when you are hungry. There are several studies that show that shopping while hungry leads to increased spending, and not always on the right things. Often, going to the store while hungry results in the purchase of quick and easy foods. You’re already hungry, so why would you want to spend an hour cooking something when you can just put it in the microwave for a few minutes?

A great tip is to plan out what you want to make throughout the week. Do you have your heart set on having a steak at some point this week? Write it down when you have the thought. Every time you think of something you want to make for dinner in the next week, be sure to write it down.

There have been plenty of times that I’ve gone to the store with a few things in mind and realized a few days later that it was not enough food. Always make sure that you get enough food for the entire week. Planning ahead is a good idea, not only so you know that you have enough food, but if you end up making something else one night, you’ll still have what you didn’t make ready to go.

If you can, going to a store where you can buy food in bulk is always a great option. Maybe you know that you are going to have a bunch of people over for a get-together. You can buy the things you need in bulk instead of spending more money and getting the same amount at a different store. Things like juice are great when bought in bulk, especially if you and your family drink a lot of juice.

You won’t have to worry about running out of it in the middle of the week and needing to buy more.

Meat and fish are going to be the most expensive items on most people’s shopping lists. There are several options here to make your money go further while eating more cheaply. First, look for cheaper cuts. Chicken thighs, for example, are normally cheaper than chicken breasts. Cheaper still is buying a whole chicken and then roasting it. This will give you a great first meal, with leftovers that can be used for more meals later.

There are many recipes, such as stew and casseroles, which combine meat and vegetables to make the meat go further. These options will allow you to use slightly cheaper meat cuts, such as stewing steak. Moreover, make sure to try to buy chicken that is skinless. This will help with your fat intake. If skinless chicken is more expensive, buy the skinned chicken, and take the skin off before you start cooking. Either way, you will be getting a food that is much healthier and less fattening while still getting the best bang for your buck.

Buying frozen or canned fish is often the cheapest way to go, and there is nothing unhealthy about these options. Some of the cheapest frozen fish can be quite bland, but when cooked with a nice sauce, frozen fish soon turns into a delicious healthy meal at a much cheaper price than fresh fish.

There are plenty of people who live a vegetarian lifestyle, and for them, the meat-buying problem falls out of the equation. I am no vegetarian, but I do recognize that we eat too much meat and that large-scale meat production negatively affects the environment. I am not ready to let go of my steak lust just yet, but I do observe meat-free Mondays, which has become a huge movement. By giving up meat one day a week (it doesn’t need to be a Monday), we can help the environment and our shopping at the same time.

Meats are obviously incredibly important to any diet, as long as you still eat meat. Take your time to look at the various meats available wherever you are getting your groceries from. Make sure they look the way you want and are lean. Don’t cart the first one you see, but take time to look. You might be surprised that the meat you find is much better tasting.

Pulses are both cheap and healthy, and they are a great addition to meat dishes. They can even replace meats from time to time.

I am not going to tell you not to go to the supermarket to do your shopping. For convenience, supermarkets are hard to beat, but they are not always the best option, especially when buying fresh vegetables. Vegetables are the mainstay of a healthy diet, but supermarkets often import them from distant countries. This affects both their nutrition levels and price.

Try to buy vegetables that are in season and grown locally. Often, there will be sales on items that they suddenly find they have a glut of. This is the time to buy these food items and then pop them in the freezer. Corn, for example, will cost a fortune in the non-summer months, but the price goes through the floor in summer, so buy loads and throw them in the freezer.

If you have the land and knowledge, you should grow your own vegetables. With a big enough garden, you’ll be able to grow tons of vegetables that can then be frozen and used later. This does take some time to do, and not everyone has the kind of time that it takes, but at least you will know exactly where the food is coming from. You’ll know that it’s healthy and definitely not drenched in preservatives or chemicals. Fruit trees are also a great idea, if you have the space for them. Any way that you can save on buying healthy fruits and vegetables should be taken as a good option.

Pre-frozen vegetables are almost always cheaper. They are convenient and will have been frozen shortly after picking, so they lose very little of their nutrition levels. Even canned vegetables are both nutritious and convenient, but be sure to check the nutrition chart to see what additives, especially sugar and salt, may have been placed into the can.

If you have a farmer’s market nearby, this is one of the best sources of high- quality fruit and vegetables. If you are in an area where you know some of the farmers, then you might be buying from people whom you know. Moreover, you are supporting an industry that is being placed under lots of pressure. Towards the end of the day, they will often sell off stock more cheaply to avoid having to pack it up and take it back to the farm with them. Wherever you buy your vegetables, remember to go for a rainbow of colors to get plenty of variety.

If you have the space, then it pays to buy healthy foods in bulk. Aside from helping in terms of price, you are virtually assured that you will always be able to find something healthy to eat in your kitchen, and that is a good way to avoid eating junk. I always have tubs of yoghurt, fruit, and almonds in the house. No matter what happens, I know I can combine those three ingredients to have a healthy snack or meal if ever I need one.

Given that I try to buy less, I prefer to go for the smallest shopping trolley I can find. Another useful tip is to shop when the supermarket is not full, if possible. Supermarkets are designed so that there are plenty of impulse choices in view while you stand in queue, and this is a sure way to find things you don’t need sneaking into the trolley.

In fact, you should stick with your list and nothing else. Pretend that the rest of the store isn’t even there. All that’s there are the groceries you need and the list that you made. Go straight to those items, and put them in your cart before you can look at something else. Obviously, with things like fruit, vegetables, and meats, look only at the things that you want to buy to make sure you buy the best ones possible. However, don’t let your eyes wander to other things that surround those on your list. Any way to avoid an impulse buy is important.

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Cutting Down Food Waste

As much as 40% of food produced in America gets thrown away. The figures for Europe and Britain are not much better. That waste does not all happen in our kitchens, as plenty is wasted on the farm and during the transport and manufacturing processes, but there is still a huge amount of domestic food waste. Much of that will start to decrease automatically as you start becoming more conscious of what you buy and start buying what you need rather than what you think you want on impulse. Here are a few tips to reduce food waste further.

One good place to reduce waste is the refrigerator. Keeping it organized helps reduce waste in that you can eat the oldest food first, and you can be sure that there are no items tucked away that you have forgotten about. Placing them in cold water for a few minutes can revive greens that look sad and wilted. Scraps can be turned into snacks or meals and added to other dishes.

When you buy in bulk, be sure to store the oldest items at the front of your cupboards, and put the newer ones behind them. If you do buy in bulk, it may be advantageous for you to make several meals at once, pack them up, and freeze them or put them in the fridge. This not only makes sure that food is used up before it goes bad, but it can also save you energy and time later in the week if you just need a quick meal on the go or if you don’t have too much time to make a full meal right then.

Many recipes will list a specific ingredient that you don’t have. Try replacing it with another similar ingredient that you do have. If something needs a milk- based product that you don’t have, you can try to replace it with milk. This way, you’ll be able to still make what you want without any issue.

Have some good airtight containers for storing items like nuts for longer. Moreover, keep them in a space that you will see, especially if they don’t need to be refrigerated. This will ensure that they will get eaten by someone, given that they are in an appetizing spot.

Have one meal a week that can be considered a use-it-up meal by putting together an assortment of leftovers that have accumulated in the refrigerator. Bread is one of the most frequently wasted items. Bread freezes really easily, especially if you halve the loaf and pop one half into the freezer before you even start to use it.

If you tend to go through a lot of bread, it’s easiest to buy a few loaves and put the extras in the freezer. That way, when you go through the first loaf, you can bring the next one out without needing to go back to the store to get another one. Of course, if you aren’t a frequent bread eater, buying bread that is a smaller loaf might be the best idea for you. There are some breads that come in smaller loafs, thus making it easier for you.

Often, people forget about the foods that they have in their kitchen. Put foods that you don’t want to forget about in places where you will definitely see them. Don’t put something like salmon on the counter, of course, but if you have some oatmeal that you keep forgetting about, put it on the counter so you’ll see it right away when you walk into the kitchen in the morning. Doing this is even more important when you buy in bulk. Buying in bulk is good, but not if you buy too much of something that will go bad. Keep those things in places that you will always see to ensure that they will be eaten.

Another way to avoid forgetting what food you actually have is to write a list of what you have to eat or haven’t made into a meal yet, and place it on your fridge. It’ll save you time from browsing through the fridge and figuring out what you need if you do it this way. However, this does require a more consistent checking of what is in your fridge than you may want to do.

Finally, learn to monitor what you throw away so that you start to get a handle on your greatest areas of waste, and then alter your shopping accordingly. If you tend to throw away fruit every week, maybe it’s time to stop buying that fruit.

Maybe there’s a certain meal you make too much of every time, and the leftovers never get eaten. Try making a smaller batch of that dish next time so that it is eaten when you make it. Then, you won’t have to worry about leftovers.

Check your shopping list, and think of what you have actually eaten each week. Instead of doing the same weekly shopping and wasting the same amount of food on a regular basis, change the list to fit what you actually eat or what you really want to eat – that is, the food you want to eat that is also healthy for you – each week or each time you go out shopping.

Putting It into Practice

Below are some simple recipes followed by a meal plan that will help you get started on your new healthy lifestyle program. This is by no means a comprehensive collection, but it will certainly give you some ideas both on how to eat and what to shop for. After that, you can start to introduce your own innovations based on the information you now have.

You can also start to gather other healthy recipes. There are plenty of recipes available to you on the internet and in cookbooks. If you ever want to find more, these recipes aren’t hard to find. Remember that food is your friend, and you have to start to develop a different relationship with the food you put into your body while eliminating the careless attitude of the past. By giving a little thought, a little time, and a little patience, you will find yourself feeling and looking better.

It will likely be difficult at first. It might seem like there’s no way it will ever work out in your favor. If you can, try to start this with someone else. You can lean on each other when it starts to get hard, and support each other when you are having issues. Moreover, it’s always more fun when you have someone else to do something like this with. Working together to do something generally means that it will happen in the end.

If you can’t do it with anyone else – if they don’t want to or they can’t for other reasons – that doesn’t mean you won’t be able to do it yourself. You need to know that you can do it yourself. It will be a little harder, but if you set your goals and see them through to the end, you will be much more successful than you would be otherwise. You might even surprise yourself with the great things you can do. Always tell yourself you have what it takes, and great things will come your way. This is not a quick weight loss plan. It is a new, healthy, and sustainable lifestyle.

Breakfast Recipes

For years, breakfast has been promoted as the most important meal of the day. Science is now starting to show that it is not quite as important as we were led to believe and that equal attention should be paid to the other meals of the day. However, breakfast still sets us up for the day ahead.

The problem with breakfast is that very often, we neglect it as we dash about getting dressed, sorting out the kids for the day, and preparing for the combat of our commute to work. This is a time when we might not do too much mindful eating and instead be tempted to grab something unhealthy.

It helps if you can prepare these meals the night before, but in the real world that we live in, this might be wishful thinking. Breakfast should be an exciting meal that helps wake you up and gives you the energy you need to get through the first half of the day. Many people feel that not eating breakfast is better for weight loss.

This isn’t true. Skipping a meal just makes you hungrier by the time it’s lunch, so you are more than likely going to eat a lot more than you actually need. Moreover, your body won’t have the energy it needs to get through the morning. You’ll feel more tired, and the things you need to do, like work, might seem even more annoying than they would if you had a full stomach. The recipes below are chosen for their simplicity and their ease of preparation.

A Real Quickie

  • Quarter one apple
  • Cube 8 grams of cheese
  • 1⁄4 cup of almonds or walnuts

This is my go-to meal when I find myself pressed for time. I can pop it all into a zip lock bag and munch on it on the way to work. It also doubles as a handy snack when I find myself hungry between meals.

Ricotta Kick Off

This comprises three tablespoons of low-fat ricotta spread over two slices of whole wheat bread. Top this with some sliced tomato and a few cubes of yellow pepper. Sprinkle lightly with crushed black pepper. This will give you some great protein to start the day off with, plus a great tasting sandwich.

Fruit Shake

Fruit shakes or smoothies are easy to make and great to drink at any time of day, but their easy preparation makes them ideal for breakfast. There is no limit to what you can throw into them, but my usual method is to throw one cup of milk, half a tub of plain yoghurt, and eight grams of almonds into a blender.

To this, I add a bit of whatever fruit I happen to have handy. Berries like strawberries, raspberries, black currants, and blueberries are high in antioxidants while also adding flavor. For fruits with weak flavor, I throw in one teaspoon of honey. A quick word of warning here – some blenders cannot cope with whole nuts, which may need to be chopped on a cutting board first.

Easy Oats

Most people make rolled oats into porridge, which makes up a very healthy meal, but I prefer to eat my oats raw. Take three quarters of a cup of rolled oats. Pour enough milk to soak them. Some people prefer to eat this meal quite dry, but I tend to let the oats soak well. Add some chopped nuts or blueberries, and then add a half teaspoon of honey if you find this all too bland. I can prepare this breakfast in about a minute, and it simply doesn’t get much healthier. Oats are great for lowering cholesterol, and they fill you up for a long time, so this little starter should easily carry you through to lunchtime.

Bran Waffle

Toast a bran waffle, and then coat it generously with a tablespoon of peanut butter. To add a bit more interest, add a sprinkle of sesame seeds or dried raisins. You can replace the waffle with whole grain bread or a bran muffin.

Sunday Special

Once in a while, why not blast off your day with a bigger meal that you may prefer to treat as brunch? Grill two rashers of back bacon. In a pan lightly oiled with olive or coconut oil, fry a large sliced tomato and a cup full of fresh mushrooms, then fry or scramble two farm eggs. This meal should keep you going for hours. Mushrooms are among the more filling vegetables, and tomatoes actually become healthier when heated because some of the nutrients are made more accessible to our bodies.

Easy Work Lunches

Lunch when working is another meal that we may find hard to really think about. This exposes us to the temptation of hitting that button on the vending machine. The meals below are low in calories and very easy to prepare and eat. They do not take long to make, but it may be easiest to prepare them the night before. I know you are tired and don’t want to be bothered. Focus on the person you want to be in terms of health and weight. Pretty soon, you will find yourself becoming accustomed to spending a few minutes each evening getting lunch ready for the next day at work.

As time progresses, you will find that you have more energy as your body adapts to its new healthier regime. Lunch is especially important if you work somewhere for long hours. You need something to help get you through the day and help you feel happier. The more times you eat lunch, the more you will notice that you can get through your work day in a better mood.

Turkey Wrap

  • 1 whole wheat wrap
  • 3 slices of turkey
  • 2 tablespoons of humus
  • 1 tablespoon of cream cottage cheese or goat’s cheese 
  • 1 hand full of baby spinach

Throwing all this together and wrapping it up really takes no time at all. You will probably spend more time looking for a lunch box than you will making this meal, and turkey is both cheap and low fat.

Black Bean Burrito

  • 1 whole wheat wrap
  • 1⁄4 of a cup of black beans (canned beans are fine)
  • 1⁄2 a sliced avocado
  • 1⁄4 of a small red onion
  • 1 teaspoon of sweet chili sauce

When I am making this meal, I tend to make two or three at a time and pop the others into the refrigerator.

Grilled Chicken and Cheese Sandwich

  • 2 slices of whole grain bread
  • 1⁄2 a chicken breast
  • 1 slice of Gouda cheese (any cheese will do) 
  • 2 tablespoons of Greek yoghurt
  • 3 slices of tomato
  • Lettuce (or rocket if I can get it)

If you have a refrigerator at work, you can store the ingredients there and make this up at work in less time than it would take you to get that chocolate bar out of the vending machine, which will probably swallow your money half the time anyway. The only problem is that pretty soon, everyone in the office would want what you’ve got.

Egg, Tomato, and Avocado Sandwich

  • 1 whole wheat muffin 
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon of olive oil 
  • Half an avocado
  • Two slices of tomato

Okay, I admit, we are stretching you here. You need to muster all your willpower and fry an egg. You also need to cut the muffin in half before loading in the ingredients. One handy little reminder here – don’t leave the egg too soft. It won’t travel well, and it would look bad running down the front of your top during that first meeting after lunch.

Quinoa Tabbouleh

Salads are a great meal for work because not only are they are easy to make and healthy, but they also allow you to just make up the recipe according to what you have in the kitchen. You cannot ruin a salad, but be sure to include enough protein or fat to get you through the second half of your workday. Leaves and tomato are great, but you need something a little more substantial. The idea is to feel healthy, and it won’t do if you are starving.

  • 100 grams of Quinoa (cook it according to the instructions on the bag) 75 grams of parsley, chopped finely
  • 4 diced tomatoes
  • 100 grams of cucumber, diced
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar Juice and zest of half a lemon
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 1⁄4 clove of crushed garlic
  • 50 grams of rocket or lettuce Small pinch of salt

Mix the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, honey, salt, and garlic to make your dressing. Finally, mix the other ingredients, and pour the dressing over the top.

Dinner

I am using the term dinner here on the assumption that you are a working person who may be having your main meal in the evening. Of course, these meals are interchangeable, so if you have a bit more time during the day, you may choose to make these your lunchtime meals. These are only suggestions to get you started and, hopefully, gently seduce you into a passion for cooking, which is essential to really healthy eating.

Dinner is a pretty crucial meal for people who work. There will likely be days during which you miss out on lunch because you had too much work to do. Fortunately, dinner can still be a great time to pick up on any nutrients you missed out on during the day. You can always have a very healthy dinner and pick yourself up from the long day you just had.

Chicken, Broccoli, and Brussels Sprout Salad

  • 2 skinned chicken breasts 
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon of salt
  • 2 broccoli stems
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil 
  • Juice of half a lemon 
  • Ground black pepper
  • 3 cups Brussels sprouts (finely sliced) 
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 1⁄4 cup fresh parsley
  • 4 grams Parmesan cheese

Place the chicken in a small pan, cover it with water, and add half of the salt. Bring the water to boil, then remove the pan from the heat, and let it stand for 15 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water, then allow it to cool completely. When cool, shred into bite-sized pieces.

Peel the broccoli stem, and then slice it into thin strips. In a large bowl, mix the olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Finally, add the chicken, the strips of broccoli, the Brussels sprouts, nuts, and parsley, and mix all ingredients gently. You have just made a healthy meal for two.

Beef Chow Mein

This is a very popular dish that you will find on nearly any Chinese menu but perhaps not cooked with quite the same attention to health as this recipe below.

  • 450 grams egg noodles
  • 4 tablespoons of peanut or walnut oil
  • 450 grams of lean beefsteak cut into strips
  • 2 garlic clove crushed
  • 1 teaspoon grated root ginger
  • 1 green pepper, thinly sliced
  • 1 carrot, thinly sliced
  • 2 celery sticks, sliced
  • 8 spring onions
  • 1 tablespoon dry sherry
  • 1 teaspoon Demerara sugar (dark brown sugar will do) 
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce

A few drops of chili sauce or some chili flakes

Cook the noodles for 4 and a half minutes in boiling water, then drain and rinse under cold water. Toss the noodles in one tablespoon of peanut or walnut oil. Heat the remaining oil in a pre-heated wok, and then stir fry the beef for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and grated ginger, and stir fry for a further 30 seconds. Add the pepper, carrot, celery, and onions, and stir fry for 2 more minutes. Pour in the sugar, sherry soy sauce, and chili, and continue mixing for another minute.

Finally, stir in the noodles, and keep mixing until the whole mixture is warmed through. This meal serves four.

Beef and Peppers With Lemongrass

  • 500 grams lean beef fillet
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, finely shredded Thumb-sized root ginger, finely chopped 1 red pepper, thickly sliced
  • 1 green pepper, thickly sliced
  • 1 onion, thickly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice

Salt and pepper

Serve with freshly cooked noodles or rice

Cut the beef into long strips. Heat the oil in a pre-heated wok to high heat. Add the beef, and stir fry for 3 minutes. Add the garlic, lemongrass, and ginger, and then remove the wok from the heat. Remove the ingredients from the wok, and set aside. Add the pepper and onions to the wok, and fry until the onion starts to become golden. Return the beef to the wok, and add the lime juice. Season the dish with salt and pepper. Serve with rice or noodles. This dish is meant for four people.

Ratatouille

This recipe is one of my favorites because of sheer convenience and its abundance of vegetables. A large quantity can be made, and this can be eaten hot or cold or as an accompaniment to steak, chicken, or any other protein. Cracking an egg over it makes for an easy meal to throw together at the last minute. Finally, it freezes really well, so a large quantity can be divided into several meals, each of which can be defrosted on occasions when time is in short supply. 

  • 2 large onions
  • 6 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped)
  • 3 courgettes (Zucchini)
  • 2 red pepper (Capsicum)
  • 1 kg aubergines (Egg plant)
  • 1 kg peeled tomatoes (Canned are fine)
  • 150 grams black olives (Preferably without pips) 
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon of thyme
  • 30 grams capers
  • Salt and pepper to season
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil

Lightly brown the onions. After 3 minutes, add the tomato, onion, garlic, thyme, and seasoning. Cook gently for a further 30 minutes, and while waiting, dice the remaining vegetables into cubes. Warm the oil in a large pan or wok, and fry the peppers and the eggplant until soft and golden. Drain off the excess oil by laying the ingredients on a piece of kitchen paper. Fry the zucchini until soft, and add all the ingredients, including the olives, and simmer for a further half an hour. This recipe will give six helpings, so you can freeze anything you would not use, or you can double the quantities and make a really large batch to have several meals on standby for when you need them.

Desserts

If this healthy eating method is to be both viable and sustainable, then it needs to include some of the pleasures in life, such as desert. You might need to steer clear of the Black Forest chocolate cake or the banana toffee pudding, but there are still plenty of healthy options. I have already looked at smoothies and yoghurt with fruits, nuts, and honey, but what about a couple of more interesting recipes to make healthy eating a little bit more enjoyable?

Dessert is one of those things that people never want to say no to. Even when you’ve had a large dinner, there’s still a part of you that wants to have something sweet after your savory meal. Thankfully, there are plenty of desserts out there that aren’t as high in sugar content and can actually be beneficial to your health. Making your own dessert is a great way to ensure that you’re getting everything you need.

Red Fruit Brûlés

This is a healthy version of the traditional Crème Brûlée. It is low in calories and only takes 10 minutes to cook. It is a great dessert for when you have guests.

  • 450 gm / 1 lb assorted red fruits, such as red currents, black currents, cherries, and strawberries (can be bought frozen and defrosted)
  • 150 ml / 5 fluid oz Sour cream
  • 150 ml / 5 fluid oz Natural fromage frais 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 4 tablespoons Demerara sugar

Start by pre-heating the grill. Divide the red fruits equally between the four heat- proof ramekin dishes. Combine and mix fromage frais and sour cream, then stir in the vanilla essence. Gently spoon the mixture over the fruit, trying to cover the fruit as evenly as possible. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of Demerara sugar over each of the bowls, then place under the hot grill until the sugar completely melts and begins to caramelize, which normally takes 2 to 3 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before serving.

Mixed Fruit Crumble

This easy-to-cook dessert can provide up to 12 helpings and is thus ideal for dinner parties or for several family meals. It works equally well with fresh or frozen fruit, and it doesn’t need to be defrosted before cooking.

  • 2 kg of mixed fruit – peeled, cored, and quartered apples and pears, blackberries, plums, and figs (feel free to change these ingredients according to what you have available)
  • Cinnamon
  • 100 grams almond meal
  • 100 grams desiccated coconut 50 grams plain flour
  • 50 grams sugar
  • 50 grams butter
  • 1 tablespoon honey

Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Place the fruit in a large oven-proof serving dish, drizzle the honey over the fruit, and then sprinkle the cinnamon. In another bowl, mix the flour, almond meal, coconut, sugar, and butter with your fingertips to form a crumbly texture. Gently sprinkle the crumbly mixture over the dish of fruit, covering it evenly.

Place in the pre-heated oven for 30 minutes or until the crust is golden brown. 

Serve with a dollop of yogurt.

The Sensitive Subject of Snacks

It is probably best if we deal with this subject head on because almost everyone reading this book is going to snack at some stage. This is particularly true when you first start to change your eating habits from the fast food guzzling you may have done in the past.

At first, when you start to eat a healthier diet, your body will tell you it is starving simply because it is used to all the fat, salt, and sugar that you have been giving it before you changed your ways. As your body comes to realize that it is not, in fact, being treated so badly after all, these feelings will subside, but there are going to be times when snacks between meals become a necessity.

There is a myth that eating more frequently speeds up metabolism and that by doing so, you can actually lose weight. In fact, it has been proven that the more often we eat, the more calories we consume overall. Ideally, we would not need to eat between meals because we should consume the right amount at each meal to last us until the next one.

This is not an ideal world, so we might as well make the best of it. The scientific name for snacking is Between Meal Eating Episodes or BMEE, and it has been widely practiced throughout our history. What has changed is the quality of the food we choose to snack on.

The first thing to recognize is that feeling hungry does not mean you have an emergency on your hands and thus need to respond immediately. Think about how hungry you really are, and decide on whether you really have to eat immediately. If, after a few moments of reflection, you feel you can hold out until the next meal, then do so.

On the other hand, if you are gritting your teeth in discomfort, then a snack may be the answer. The question is, of course, which snack to go for. You now know that fresh vegetables and fruit provide fiber and fill you up, so these are obvious choices to go for. If necessary, try having something healthy with them, such as guacamole, humus, or even a little peanut butter. Whichever choice you decide on, try to eat slowly, drink water, and think about what you are eating. One good rule of thumb is that your snack should not have more than one hundred calories.

Snacks don’t have to be evil things that you steer clear of. Instead, they should be seen as something that can help you get through your day and not make you worry about your next meal when you should be working. Always keep in mind that snacking might be exactly what your body needs, especially if you accidently miss a meal. Having a snack that isn’t chockful of calories or harmful ingredients also won’t make or break your diet. Remember to cut yourself a little bit of slack when you are eating, well and don’t force yourself to stick to such a strict regimen of eating.

Here are a few easy-to-eat snacks and the amount of calories they contain on average so that you can make more informed choices about what snacks to have.

  • Apple (medium) 95 calories 
  • Red pepper 37 calories 
  • Peach 58 calories
  • Orange 65 calories
  • 20 Cherry tomatoes 61 calories

These are just a few examples, but they will give you an idea of how many calories there are in these items and how handy they are as a quick snack that won’t blow your daily intake sky high.

Another good snack that I find very useful is almonds, which have an average of 100 calories for every 13 nuts. They are easy to carry, make you feel full quickly, and have been proven to decrease the risk of heart disease. If you prepare in advance for the possibility of needing a snack, then you can make sure you are always prepared by having some nuts or an apple with you instead of just grabbing the first edible thing that comes along, which in this day and age is probably going to be some form of fast food.

For a slightly more complicated snack, but one that is both delicious and filling, why not try the cocoa power ball?

Cocoa Power Ball

  • 330 grams almond meal
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 60 grams vanilla protein powder or powdered milk 
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 16 fresh dates, pitted
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • Some desiccated coconut to assist rolling

Place all ingredients, except the dates and the vanilla extract, into a food blender, and give them a quick whiz.

Chop the dates by hand, and add them and the vanilla to the mix in the food blender. Whiz the ingredients again until a sticky consistency is achieved so that you could form portions the size of golf balls with your hands. If the mix seems too dry to bind, then add a few drops of water.

These delicious and filling little snacks can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for weeks. Be careful not to eat too many as they are addictive.

Supplements

Traditional approaches to weight loss cannot be substituted by natural supplements. That said, they may help people burn slightly more calories every day, gradually increasing weight loss.

Certainly, a person cannot rely on a single food or supplement to burn fat. They should also decrease their calorie intake and increase physical activity. However, when used as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle, natural fat burners may accelerate weight loss by either increasing metabolism or decreasing appetite.

Resurge is of the most popular weight loss supplements that promise to help you shed pounds and sleep better. Because studies have shown that sleep deprivation is associated with deficiencies of growth hormone and elevated levels of cortisol, both of which contribute to obesity.

While other supplements promote nutritional factors, meal replacement forms, appetite suppression, or similar effects, Resurge boosts your body’s metabolism by increasing your core temperature. However, before making any purchases, you might want to read some Resurge reviews because the supplement industry is rife with scams.

It should be noted that pills or supplements only work when combined with a healthy weight-loss diet. Supplements are ineffective on their own and are hardly a solution to obesity. 

Besides, it’s always best to talk with your doctor before you start taking a supplement, especially if you already take medications, have health concerns or are pregnant.

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