Posts Tagged ‘Healthy’

Sorry about that! That was almost a “Shalloween” recommendation by its mere absence! Here’s the link for a most scary video. Be prepared!!!

Guys can have a positive influence on the way a family eats. Here’s my latest blog post about how guys can model healthy eating for their family featured today on Meals Matter, a website and blog committed to healthy meal planning!

Times have changed. Long gone are the traditional roles that suggest only the man brings home “the bacon” and it’s the woman’s job to cook it. The same holds true for which parent is ultimately responsible for teaching their children the importance of good nutrition and healthy eating habits. Kids look to both mom and dad for this responsibility. So from one “man” eater to all of the others out there, here are my five tips on how guys can step up to the plate and model healthy eating for the entire family.

Man-sized appetite. So dad, are you a lumberjack or an office worker? Men can message to kids that a “man-sized” portion will vary depending on activity level. Best visual lessons include not overfilling your plate, slowing down the rate that you eat at and not being afraid to throw in the towel when you first become full –even if there is still food on the plate!

Real men eat fruit and vegetables (and not just potatoes!) Salad isn’t just for rabbits and “chicks”. They can be real filler-uppers and deliver much-needed fiber and antioxidants for guys and everyone one else at the table, too.

Macho milk mustache. Men are not impervious to weak bones. The number of cases of men diagnosed with osteoporosis grows each year. Low-fat milk, yogurt and cheese are great ways to meet much-needed calcium levels for healthy bones throughout the lifecycle, regardless of gender. Plus, milk and milk products are packed with protein!

Be a whole grain “roll” model. Guys can choose whole grain fiber and nutrient-rich cereals for breakfast, sandwich breads to pack in the family lunches and sides to round out the dinner meal. Whole grains do a better job in both satisfying a starving man or a hungry girl.

Lean your protein. There are very lean cuts of animal protein that are lower in cholesterol, saturated fat and calories that meet the needs of the entire family. Plant based proteins like beans and soy can also satisfy a hearty appetite while providing fiber and other important nutrients.

Shop, cook and clean like a man. Research suggests the more kids get involved in the procurement and preparation of food, the better food choices they make later on in life. Take the kids shopping with you and try your best to quench that man urge of saying “that’s okay…I’ll do that.” Kids want to help and will be more likely to try what they make if they’re involved. And don’t be afraid to ask them to clean up afterwards. The latest research study suggests that kids who participate in regular chores are happier. Who doesn’t love happy children?!

The Slice Is Right

America has a love affair with pizza. We consume about 100 acres of it daily, 350 slices per second, and every man, woman and child eats about 23 pounds of pizza yearly.

Jeff Ruby, Chicago Magazine senior editor, deputy dining editor and co-author of the book Everyone Loves Pizza, says, “There’s something about pizza that transcends age and race and sex and all borders. Apart from some pockets of Naples, we’re more nuts about it than anyone on earth.” Andrea Giancoli, RD, MPH, a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association, agrees. “Soft dough, pizza sauce, a cornucopia of flavors and toppings, and that unique mouth feel — there’s no other food quite like it,” she says.

But pizza has gotten a bad rap. Thought to be fattening because of carb-laden dough, fatty meats and cheeses, and portion sizes (who can eat just one slice?), nutritious is not a word often associated with pizza. However, the basics of pizza are healthy. Tomato sauce is rich in the heart disease and cancer-fighting plant chemical, lycopene. Pizza is also one of the few dishes that incorporate all of the major food groups: dairy, grain, meat, veggies and fruit (tomatoes are fruits!). The truth is that pizza can fit into your diet without wrecking your waistline (it’s included on the new plate icon just released by the USDA). Follow these five sound strategies to make your next slice more nutritious and diet-friendly.

Eat Less

It’s best to stick to one or two slices (as difficult as that may be). If you order an entire pie, make it into several meals, Giancoli suggests. Better yet, have a salad on the side to help fill you up.

Skim Off the Top

Instead of making meats and cheeses the main attractions, ask for sparse toppings. Also, you’ll save hundreds of calories if you ask for 50 percent less mozzarella. Or swap mozzarella for a very flavorful cheese, such as feta, and you won’t need as much, Giancoli suggests.

Skim Off the Bottom

If you want to fill up without filling out, choose a thin, wafer-like crust and moderately-sized slices. Stay away from deep dish or cheese-filled crusts. For example, a slice equivalent to 1/8 of a 12-inch thin crust pizza contains about 164 calories in the crust alone. A thick crust slice bumps you up to 203 calories for the same size. Whole wheat dough is a healthier option because it provides fiber and other nutrients only found in whole grains. But it doesn’t necessarily translate into being lower in calories. Portion size still rules here.

Choose Skinny Proteins

Try adding grilled chicken, shrimp or Canadian bacon to your pie, which are lower in calories and saturated fat than pepperoni and sausage. But if you must have your pepperoni, ask for half the usual portion.

Veg Out

Stack your pie with extra tomatoes, mushrooms, green peppers, spinach, broccoli and eggplant for a nutritious hit, loads of flavor and belly-filling fiber. You just had your pie and ate it, too. Bada bing!

Author David Grotto is a FitStudio advisory board member, registered dietitian and the founder and president of Nutrition Housecall. He is the author of 101 Foods That Could Save Your Life and 101 Optimal Life Foods. He served as a national spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association for more than six years.