Monday, July 11, 2011

Healthy Li.P.P.s and Recipes too

It's hard to imagine what in the world I might add to the host of blogs, news reports, articles, and advice you already receive each day that empores you to follow a healthier path. But I truly do believe that we are the masters of our own destinies and we must take charge of our own health and care. The daily grind can rob us of the time that we need to care for ourselves, so adding to that the Martha Stewart approach probably sounds painful. Why not just go to the spa and get a facial? Why not meet with a dietician and work out a new lifestyle plan? I don't know about you, but this slump of an economy we're in doesn't leave me with much extra to spend on trips to the spa or a to a nutritionist. So, here is what my healthy Li.P.P.s want to share with you today:

At the dining table - I don't have to tell you that what you put in your body can affect not only your metabolism, but your mood, your energy level and, helloooo, your health. Here are some ideas for healthy choices.


There is nothing easier than low fat vanilla yogurt, a handful of granola, and fresh berries. You have all you need in one bowl to fuel you through the morning - whole grains, fruits with natural sugar, and the yogurt cultures for appropriate digestion. Easy peezy.

How about a smoothie? Have you seen those awesome, as-seen-on-tv bullet blenders. I love mine! Pam Asberry, one of my Writers Li.P.P. partners told me one day about freezing peeled bananas to form the icy base for your smoothie. Best tip ever! So take a frozen banana and add your favorites - berries, yogurt, juice, milk, stone fruit - whatever strikes your fancy and crank up the bullet. One of my recent favorites is one frozen banana, enough fresh blueberries to fill in the gaps, and cranberry juice. Antioxidants that keep your pipes working smoothly. Who can beat that?

Let's talk lunch:

Lunch is a killer for me. I always find myself craving what I really don't need, or in a time crunch and unable to do anything healthy. My go-to option...salad.

I love fennel as a salad option. It adds vitamin C, fiber and folate to your meal along with a fresh yet subtle licorice flavor. If you aren't familiar with fennel, it looks like a giant stalk of celery. I like to slice it nice and thin for a salad and one of my favorite combinations is Mediterranian. Blood orange segments, fennel, black olives, olive oil, salt and pepper. Yum! Here's a link to another favorite - Escarole and Fennel Salad with Pears and Gruyère.

Let's not leave out our friendly whole grains. Couscous, barley and quinoa are high in fiber but also add lots of protein to your salad. Not to mention using these healthy grains are a great way to use up the leftover side dish from last night's meal. I especially love quinoa. It's nutty (like me) and a wonderful high protein alternative to starchy old rice. One of my favorite quinoa salad recipes is Quinoa Salad with Vegetables and Tomatillo Vinaigrette.

Edamame is another great add on. It's packed with as much if not more protien than most meat without all the saturated fat. Studies show a diet rich in soy means increased weight loss and a decreased risk of breast cancer. One little green pea with lots of healthy advantages.Why not add it to your salad? Triple Pea Salad With Creamy Tarragon Dressing is one of my favorites.

Alright, there's one last topping worth talking about - seeds. Seeds are a great alternative to nuts. They both have similar amounts of fat and calories, but you get more seeds in two tablespoons so you get more crunch per yummy bite. Seeds offer high levels of zinc, but pumpkin seeds give you more than four grams of iron per serving. A fabulous cancer fighter. This is one I enjoy year round - Roasted Squash Salad with Bacon and Pumpkin Seeds.

Getting out and about - I am not here to lecture you about the benefits of exercise. I shouldn't have to. If you are reading this you are a grown person and can make your own decisions about your lifestyle. At the very least, please take the stairs instead of the elevator. Fair enough?

The do-it-yourself kitchen witch - I am a big believer in taking care of yourself and one easy way to do that is to relax. I love lavender oil for its relaxing qualities. It has been known for centuries to calm frayed nerves. I even took it into the delivery room with me and rubbed it on my temples when struggling with the pain of labor. Now, I use it to take a breather. Taking care of yourself doesn't have to cost a lot of money. Here is a recipe I use for homemade bath salts.

There are lots of recipes for exfoliants, age defyers, face masks, bath salts - anything you need to take care of your skin, your body, your mind, and ultimately your soul - right online. Poke around and see what you can find then come on back and share it with the rest of us.

Life in Penned Perspective by Lindy Chaffin Start
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Visit again tomorrow for Pam's perspective.


Pam Asberry said...

Great post, Lindy! Yep, frozen bananas are my secret weapon when it comes to smoothies. Thanks for sharing all the yummy-sounding recipes, and the link to the bath salt tutorial. I think I have to try my hand at making bath salt now - the hard part will be making time to take a long, hot bath!

WritersLiPP said...

Good luck with the long hot bath. I'm ready for one now. Thanks for your support and comments Pam and for putting me out there today. XOXO - Lindy