Zero Sugar For Health

Every new year, you’re bombarded with an endless amount of dos and don’ts to eating healthier and becoming the best version of yourself. And typically, there’s one thing that’s always at the top of the naughty list: sugar. But while it’s been demonized for years, it’s actually not quite the monster it’s made out to be. And that brings up the big question: do you really need to quit sugar completely in order to eat healthier?

Because of all the negative headlines, it’s easy to get triggered every time you see the word “sugar.” It’s the ingredient that’s been said to be responsible for the obesity epidemic, and experts have said it’s as addictive as drugs, after all. Here’s the deal, though: In reality, not all sugar is horrible, and thinking so could actually do more harm than good for your health.


All Sugar Isn’t Created Equal

It might come as a surprise, but it’s actually best not to cut sugar completely out of your diet. Even though the world has been trained to see a candy bar and a bowl of strawberries as equally horrible when it comes to their high amounts of sugar, they impact your body in very different ways.

There are two types of sugar: naturally-occurring sugar and added sugar. When we talk about limiting sugar for overall health, we’re really concerned about sugar that’s added. Naturally-occurring sugars—like those found in fruit and even vegetables like sweet potatoes—are important parts of a healthy, balanced “diet” and provide plenty of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients.

In fact, getting your daily intake of naturally-occurring sugar is crucial for all the cells and organs in your body: “Our body needs glucose—a simple sugar—which is the only form of energy it can burn. Glucose comes from carbohydrates found as natural sugars in fruit, dairy, vegetables, and as starches in grains. The key is to eat foods that are natural and unrefined to get the healthy sources of carbohydrates and the ‘sugars’ our body needs.

Sugar in bowl and spoon

But while you want those wholesome sources on your plate, Danchi says added sugar should be limited to no more than 6 teaspoons per day for women and 9 teaspoons for men. That’s not just sugar you’re personally adding into your meals, either: It’s also the sugar that companies sneak into processed foods, like pasta sauces, bread, and salad dressing. So yes, checking nutrition labels is actually super important.

Added sugar is refined, provides zero nutrition, and is inflammatory to the body. Inflammation is the body’s normal response to an injury, virus, or bacteria, and unhealthy dietary ingredients like added sugar can cause a chronic state of inflammation that damages cells and is in the seedbed for diseases like Alzheimer’s, hypertension, cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.

Aside from playing a role in chronic diseases, eating high amounts of added sugar can also cause obesity and dental problems. But there’s a daily allotment for a reason: You don’t need to completely forbid yourself from it in order to stay healthy.


How To Actually Eat Healthier—(Some) Sugar, Included

Humans aren’t perfect, and treating yourself to a little sugar isn’t going to kill you. But cutting back to those smaller portions—and instead, swapping in foods that provide sweetness naturally—certainly helps you improve your health overall.

When you limit added sugars, you’re taking in more of your diet from foods that can provide a benefit to your health. An orange, for example, contains naturally-occurring sugar, fiber, vitamin C, and other nutrients. But you’re not getting those added benefits from table sugar.

Really, the best way you can better your overall health is to simply eat more vegetables and fruit. Yep, the same thing your mom always told you growing up that no kid ever wanted to hear.

A good rule of thumb is to eat a whole, natural, plant-based diet 80 to 90 percent of the time with healthy fats and low amounts of animal fats and refined foods. Avoiding sugary drinks and daily desserts on the day to day—but enjoying the special celebration food in small portions and only on occasion—is a great and workable strategy.

With a sugary treat every so often—aka not at every meal—you’ll keep yourself sane. Because while some sugar can be part of the big bad, it can certainly be part of a healthy diet as well.


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section. If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

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NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

 


Springtime Health

Before I start today’s post I just want to say congratulations to the Superbowl champs New England Patriots!!!!!!!!!!!

Spring Is 24 days away. With the change of season comes the impulse to clean and replace the old with the new. But spring doesn’t just have to be about cleaning and reorganizing – it’s also a great way to start healthy new habits and break the old. Here are a few tips to get a head start in your spring health!

Always speak with your doctor before making any changes to your diet or exercise regimen.  

Here Are Some Ways That You Can Spring Into Health

 

Start an Exercise Routine – The weather is warm and the days are longer which makes it a perfect combination to get active outside. The American Heart Association recommends that individuals do moderate exercise for at least 150 minutes per week, or 75 minutes per week of vigorous exercise.

  1. Revamp Your Diet with Fresh Fruits and Vegetables – Take advantage of the variety of vegetables available during spring. A healthy diet includes adding vegetables and fruit every day. Vegetables like broccoli, green beans, leafy greens, zucchini, cauliflower, cabbage, carrots, and tomatoes are low in calories and high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Try to eat about 3 to 5 servings every day. Fruit is also a good source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. You should try to eat about 2 to 3 servings of fruit each day. It goes without being said that it’s OK to indulge in the occasional ice cream cone. Although, frozen yogurt would be a healthier alternative.
  2. Drink More Water – As the heat kicks into high gear it is harder to stay hydrated and more important to drink more water . Drink plenty of water before going outside and have plenty on-hand to stay hydrated. If you aren’t a fan of water, try one of our recipes for Cucumber Water—it makes a great party beverage for those hot days!
  3. Cut Out the Night Cap – If one of your habits is having a drink before bed, or having a few at dinner, you may want to reconsider your next glass of Merlot. Alcohol not only causes dehydration but is also associated with sleep disorders, high blood pressure and certain types of cancer. It is recommended that women limit themselves to one drink per day, and men up to two alcoholic beverages each day.
  4. Check-In for a Check-Up – You may have chalked up some symptoms and illnesses to the winter blues, but now that it is spring, its time to get back to the doctor for a head-to-toe check up! A periodic well-exam for all ages is not just about good medical care, but it also gives you the opportunity to learn more about beneficial health habits, counseling and community support services as well as an overall view of the best ways to take care of yourself and your family for a lifetime. Your doctor will let you know how often they need to test for high blood pressure, diabetes, other diseases, and cancer screenings.
  5. Protect Your Skin – It’s going to get hot, the sun is shining, and your skin needs protection. Not only do men and women need to regularly moisturize their skin, but also protect it from the harsh rays of the sun. If you’re outside, make sure to use a sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher that protects against UVA and UVB rays. It doesn’t hurt to throw on a pair of sunglasses and a hat as well!
  6. Renew Relationships – It’s time to get out of the house and visit with your friends and family. Research has shown that good, strong relationships benefit your overall health and happiness. Spend the day with people you love, and schedule regular outings to enjoy the great spring weather.


 Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section. If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Bloglovin’ :Amanda Explains It

Bumble Bizz: Amanda

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NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

Easy New Year Resolutions For Health

For anyone that follows other blog sites, I signed up for Bloglovin’. You can find me under the name Amanda L or at (amandaexplainsit). I understand that there many Amanda Leigh’s (and many different versions of Leigh). Here is what my profile picture looks like so you can find me.


 Eat More Omega-3s

Getting more foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids might just help you keep your blood pressure down. In the multinational INTERMAP study, researchers found that among 4,680 healthy adults, those who consumed the highest amounts of omega-3 fatty acids in their diets had the lowest rates of hypertension. Research also suggests that omega-3s can help improve your mood, which we all need a little help within the short, dark days of winter. Aim to get two servings of fish a week, particularly fatty fish, such as salmon, sardines and some types of tuna, which are rich in omega-3s. Not a fish lover? Opt for walnuts and flax, which are good nonfish sources of omega-3s.

Solution: Seek out seafood


 Vegetables

The majority of Americans don’t eat the daily recommended 3 or more servings of vegetables, according to a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. If you’re of the mindset that “vegetables don’t taste good,” but know you should eat more of them since they’re teeming with healthy nutrients and fiber, get out your roasting pan. Roasting vegetable caramelizes their natural sugars so they taste fantastic. It’s an easy way to cook veggies for dinner—pop a pan of them in the oven and make the rest of dinner while they roast.

Solution: Get out the roasting pan


Up Your Fiber Intake

Getting enough fiber may help prevent cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and a number of cancers. And eating more fiber may help you slim down. But the average American eats about 14 grams a day—the recommended daily intake is 21 to 38 grams. One of the easiest ways to up your fiber intake is to eat more whole grains. Quinoa, whole-wheat couscous, bulgur, and polenta are all quick-cooking options to add to your weeknight repertoire.

Solution: Experiment with whole grains


Eat Less Meat

A popular reason to cut back on meat is for environmental reasons, but you’ll be helping your heart too. When you replace meat with soy, you’ll naturally eat less saturated fat—and research shows that saturated fat increases LDL. While tofu might not have a real “flavor,” that’s what makes it so versatile—it soaks up the flavors of a stir-fry sauce or marinade like a sponge, making it taste terrific!

Solution: Learn to like tofu more


 Rein in Your Sugar Addiction

Americans eat too much sugar. We consume 355 calories—or 22 teaspoons—of added sugars a day. The American Heart Association advises that we eat much, much less than that. Luckily, you can still make treats that satisfy your sweet tooth and cut back on your sugar intake at the same time.

Solution: Make low-sugar treats to satisfy your sweet tooth


 Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.

If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You!

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Bloglovin’ :Amanda Explains It

Bumble Bizz: Amanda

Poshmark: AmandaLei

Pinterest: Amanda Explains It

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

 

 

How To Reduce Bloating

I just want to take a moment before I get into today’s post to wish everyone A Happy New Year’s Eve. I also want to take a moment and say thank you to every and each one of you for being on this journey with me. I set out to blog every single day and I have. For 2019 I want to include all of you (my followers) (read below). I hope you all have fun and let’s have fun. Remember to have fun but also drink responsibly.

HAPPY NEW YEAR AND I WILL SEE YOU ALL IN THE NEW YEAR!

PLEASE READ: I have been thinking that I wanted to do something different for my blog next year and that Is more content that you want to see. I know that at the and of every post I ALWAYS ask what you would like to see. I MEAN I REALLY want to do more content related to what you want to see. It can be “Diet” related, fitness, nutrition or even advice posts. I post what I post because It means something to mean I won’t post something if I didn’t believe in it. I want to take this blog to the next level and I want you all of my followers (friends) to be apart of the ride. So please don’t hesitate in reaching out with any and all suggestions. You can find all of my links at the end of every post in the “Thank You” section and in the section “Where You Can Follow Me”. 

If you have missed #Blogmas all the links are listed in the section titled Blogmas which will be in right under this.

Welcome back for #Blogmas Day 30! Blogmas Is flying right by! To catch up here are the links to the first 30 Days of #Blogmas

Blogmas Days 1-30

*I realized that my #blogmas days had repeated tagged posts and that not every post was linked. I caught the mistake and fixed it. Every link should now be clickable and days 1-18 are now linked. If you are new to #blogmas you can catch up below.

Blogmas Day 1 Blogmas Day 2 Blogmas Day 3 Blogmas Day 4 Blogmas Day 5 Blogmas Day 6 Blogmas Day 7 Blogmas Day 8 Blogmas Day 9 Blogmas Day 10 Blogmas Day 11 Blogmas Day 12 Blogmas Day 13 Blogmas Day 14  Blogmas Day 15  Blogmas Day 16 Blogmas Day 17 Blogmas Day 18  Blogmas Day 19 Blogmas Day 20 Blogmas Day 21 Blogmas Day 22 Blogmas Day 23 Blogmas Day 24 Blogmas Day 25 Blogmas Day 26 Blogmas Day 27 Blogmas Day 28 Blogmas Day 29 Blogmas Day 30


Most people experience bloating at some point. Exercises, supplements, and massages can all help to reduce bloating quickly, and simple lifestyle changes can prevent it from reoccurring.

Abdominal bloating is when the abdomen feels full and tight. It commonly occurs due to a buildup of gas somewhere in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Bloating causes the belly to look larger than usual, and it may also feel tender or painful. Fluid retention in the body can also lead to bloating.


 Tips to get rid of bloating

Bloating usually happens when excess gas builds up in the stomach or intestines. When bloating occurs right after a meal, it usually resolves itself, but it is often possible to speed up this process.

The best way to tackle bloating is to determine its cause. Common triggers for bloating include:

  • Digestive issues. Constipation, food allergies, and intolerances can lead to bloating. When stool becomes backed up in the large bowel, it can cause bloating and a feeling of discomfort. Excess gas may also build up behind the stool, making the bloating worse.
  • “Diet”. Fizzy drinks, too much salt or sugar, and not enough fiber in the “diet” can all cause bloating.
  • Hormonal changes. Many people experience bloating before and during their periods due to hormonal changes and water retention.

Walking

Physical activity can get the bowels moving more regularly, which can help to release excess gas and stool. Getting the bowels to move is especially important if a person is feeling constipated. A walk around the block can provide fast relief from gas pressure.


 Try Yoga Poses

Certain yoga poses can position the muscles in the abdomen in a way that encourages the release of excess gas from the GI tract.

Child’s Pose, Happy Baby Pose, and squats can all help people to relieve a buildup of gas quickly. Learn more about yoga poses for flatulence.


 Peppermint Capsules

Peppermint oil capsules may also be helpful for indigestion and related gas. Manufacturers usually market them as a treatment for the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), but people without IBS can also use them to relieve bloating.

Peppermint works by relaxing the intestinal muscles, which allows gas and stool to move along more effectively. People should always follow the instructions on the packet. Anyone who is prone to heartburn may need to avoid peppermint.

Peppermint capsules are available to buy over the counter (OTC) at drug stores or online.


 Gas relief capsules

Simethicone pills and liquid are anti-gas medications that can help to move excess air out of the digestive tract. It is essential to always take medication according to the instructions on the label.

People can find gas relievers in drugstores or online.


 Abdominal massage

Massaging the abdomen can help to get the bowels moving. A massage that follows the path of the large intestine is especially helpful. People can follow the steps below to do this:

Placing the hands just above the right hip bone. Rubbing in a circular motion with light pressure up toward the right side of the ribcage. Rubbing straight across the upper belly area toward the left rib cage. Moving slowly down toward the left hip bone.


 Use essential oils

A study from 2016 tested the effectiveness of supplements containing a combination of fennel and curcumin essential oil in 116 people with mild-to-moderate IBS. After 30 days, people reported an improvement in their IBS symptoms, including bloating and abdominal pain.

People should not consume essential oils without speaking to a doctor first. This is because some formulations may be toxic or can interfere with medication, and there is no regulation of dosages.


 Take a warm bath, soaking, and relaxing

The heat of the bath can provide relief for a sore abdomen. Relaxation can reduce stress levels, which may allow the GI tract to function more effectively and help reduce bloating.


Long-term solutions for bloating

Quick fixes are not always effective for some causes of bloating. However, people who have frequent bloating may find that certain lifestyle changes can tackle the causes and reduce bloating over time.

People can use these simple steps to try to prevent bloating in the long-term:


Increase fiber gradually

 

Increasing fiber intake may help to treat bloating.

 

Eating more fiber helps to prevent constipation and bloating. Most people in America do not get enough fiber, with only 5 percent of people meeting their recommended daily fiber intake of 25 grams (g) for females and 38 g for males.

However, it is important to bear in mind that eating too much fiber or increasing fiber intake too quickly can cause even more gas and bloat. People may notice adverse effects from eating more than 70 g of fiber a day.

When increasing fiber intake, it is best to start slowly and increase the intake over several weeks to allow the body to adjust to this change in the “diet”.


Replace sodas with water

Fizzy, carbonated drinks contain gas that can build up in the stomach. The carbon dioxide that makes soda and similar beverages fizzy can also cause bubbling and bloating in the stomach.

Sugars or artificial sweeteners in the diet can also cause gas and bloating. Drinking water eliminates these issues and helps to treat constipation as well.


Try to avoid chewing gum

The sugar alcohols in gum can cause bloating in some people. Swallowing air while chewing also may lead to bloating and gas pain. People can use ginger mints or peppermints to freshen their breath instead.


 Get more active every day

Exercise helps your body move stool and gas out of the colon and may make bowel movements more regular. Exercise also releases extra sodium from the body through sweating, which can help to relieve water retention.

It is vital to drink plenty of water before and after exercising to stay hydrated, as dehydration can make constipation worse.


 Eat at regular intervals

Many people experience bloating directly after a big meal. It is possible to avoid this by eating several smaller meals each day, which can help to keep the digestive system moving.

Swallowing food quickly can introduce air into the digestive tract. Drinking from a straw can also lead to people swallowing more air, which in turn leads to gas and bloating. People who have bloating should avoid using straws if possible and try eating slowly to avoid swallowing air during meals.


 Try probiotics

Probiotics are good bacteria that live in the intestines. Taking a probiotic supplement may help to regulate the colon bacteria that can produce gas and cause bloating.


 Cut down on salt

An excess of sodium causes the body to retain water. This can cause a swollen and bloated feeling in the belly and other areas of the body, such as the hands and feet.


 Rule out medical conditions

In some cases, bloating may result from a medical condition. To get rid of this bloating, a person may need help from a doctor to diagnose and manage their condition.

Inflammatory bowel disease, including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, may cause people to experience bloating. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), can also cause this symptom.

Gynecological conditions, such as endometriosis and ovarian cysts, can also cause pain, swelling, and feelings of bloating in the abdominal area.

People with these symptoms should discuss them with a doctor, who will also want to know about any relevant family medical history and other medical conditions. The doctor may order diagnostic tests to look for any problems. These may include an X-ray, ultrasound, colonoscopy, or blood tests.


Consider a low-FODMAP diet

FODMAPs are a type of carbohydrate that occurs in many different foods. A 2012 review article of multiple studies concluded that a low-FODMAP diet might improve symptoms in at least 74 percent of people with IBS. Typical symptoms include bloating, flatulence, and abdominal pain.


Keep a food diary

Food intolerances are responsible for many cases of bloating. They can lead to excessive gas in the digestive tract.

Bloating is common in people who have lactose intolerance and are unable to digest the lactose sugar in dairy products. Autoimmune intolerance to gluten, known as celiac disease, is another potential culprit.

For people whose bloating happens after meals, keeping track of food and drink intake for several weeks should help to determine whether specific foods are responsible.

The American Academy of Family Physicians offer tips for keeping a food diary and provide a template for people to get started.


 Look at supplements and medications

Some supplements, such as iron, can cause constipation and other symptoms of indigestion. This can increase bloating. Potassium, on the other hand, may reduce bloating by helping to balance the body’s sodium levels.

Medications may also cause side effects that affect GI function or cause indigestion. If this happens, a doctor or pharmacist can suggest alternatives that are more gentle on the digestive tract.


When To See A Doctor

 

Although it is not common, bloating and swelling of the abdomen can signify a severe medical condition. Liver disease, inflammatory bowel disease, heart failure, kidney problems, and some types of cancer can cause bloating.

Bloating that continues for days or weeks may indicate a health issue that needs medical attention. It is advisable to speak to a doctor about ongoing bloating that does not go away over time.

People whose bloating occurs alongside these symptoms should seek medical advice

appetite changes or trouble eating, diarrhea, vomiting, weight loss, fever, severe abdominal pain, bright red blood in the stool, black or dark maroon stools.


Ultimately, the outlook for bloating depends on the underlying cause. Most of the time, bloating is due to minor issues that lifestyle changes or OTC treatments can resolve.

People should see a doctor if bloating is ongoing or occurs with other symptoms. Determining the underlying cause of bloating and other digestive issues is the first step to getting treatment and feeling better.


 

Final Thoughts

Bloating depends on the underlying cause. Most of the time, bloating is due to minor issues that lifestyle changes or OTC treatments can resolve.

People should see a doctor if bloating is ongoing or occurs with other symptoms. Determining the underlying cause of bloating and other digestive issues are the first step to getting treatment and feeling better.

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.

If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You!

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Poshmark: AmandaLei

Pinterest: Amanda Explains It

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

 

 

How To Shed Winter Weight In The Spring

In yesterday’s post, I mentioned how that I would be extending blogmas until December 31st. These posts won’t be holiday related as Christmas has since passed (Yesterday) Happy The Day After Christmas. What I will be doing Is adding some New Year’s related content to help you continue to stay on track and I will slowly be adding more of my normal content over the next week or so.

PLEASE READ: I have been thinking that I wanted to do something different for my blog next year and that Is more content that you want to see. I know that at the and of every post I ALWAYS ask what you would like to see. I MEAN I REALLY want to do more content related to what you want to see. It can be “Diet” related, fitness, nutrition or even advice posts. I post what I post because It means something to mean I won’t post something if I didn’t believe in it. I want to take this blog to the next level and I want you all of my followers (friends) to be apart of the ride. So please don’t hesitate in reaching out with any and all suggestions. You can find all of my links at the end of every post in the “Thank You” section and in the section “Where You Can Follow Me”. 

If you have missed #Blogmas all the links are listed in the section titled Blogmas which will be in right under this.

Welcome back for #Blogmas Day 25! Blogmas Is flying right by! To catch up here are the links to the first 22 Days of #Blogmas

Blogmas Days 1-25

*I realized that my #blogmas days had repeated tagged posts and that not every post was linked. I caught the mistake and fixed it. Every link should now be clickable and days 1-18 are now linked. If you are new to #blogmas you can catch up below.

Blogmas Day 1 Blogmas Day 2 Blogmas Day 3 Blogmas Day 4 Blogmas Day 5 Blogmas Day 6 Blogmas Day 7 Blogmas Day 8 Blogmas Day 9 Blogmas Day 10 Blogmas Day 11 Blogmas Day 12 Blogmas Day 13 Blogmas Day 14  Blogmas Day 15  Blogmas Day 16 Blogmas Day 17 Blogmas Day 18  Blogmas Day 19 Blogmas Day 20 Blogmas Day 21 Blogmas Day 22 Blogmas Day 23 Blogmas Day 24 Blogmas Day 25 Blogmas Day 26


If the thought of coming out from beneath your baggy cold-weather sweaters is making you break out in a cold sweat, relax! You still have plenty of time to lose weight and look your best before sundress season arrives. Spring is actually the best season to find foods that are packed with the weight-loss-super star, fiber. This macronutrient helps fill you up, can clean you out, and makes achieving your weight loss goals a whole lot easier. What’s more, these particular foods are also bursting with micronutrients that help turn off your fat-storage genes, leading to even more rapid, sustainable weight loss.

When you eat foods that are in season, they’re not only more affordable, but they’re also fresher and packed with the highest amount of flavor and nutritional value. We’ve compiled a list of 20 fruits and veggies that are in peak season every spring—they’re all easy to find, too! Since many of them will only be on sale for a few weeks of the season, you better act fast.

So, say goodbye to stews and slow cookers and start blasting away those extra winter pounds with these spring foods. To help you incorporate them into your diet, I’ve also included some bloggers favorite recipes and ways to enjoy them.

Fiddlehead Ferns

Spring foods fiddlehead ferns

These delicate spirals are the furled fronds of a young fern, which is why they are only around for a few weeks in early spring. They’re packed with manganese, vitamin C, vitamin A, omega-3 fatty acids, and fiber, which inhibits the release of the hunger hormone ghrelin, helping you to minimize munching. And if you thought bananas were the potassium powerhouse, then you’ll be interested to know these give the yellow fruit a run for its money. Fiddleheads actually have more of the bloat-banishing mineral per gram than bananas, which can also help lower blood pressure and protect against heart attack and stroke.

How to Eat It: Clean the veggie by removing any of the papery outer coatings; then soak it briefly in a bath of cold water with a bit of lemon and salt. Drain and then steam them for four or five minutes. Add the steamed fiddleheads to a skillet with a couple of tablespoons of unsalted butter and cook on each side for a minute or two. They’ll turn golden like asparagus. Add salt and pepper to taste, and enjoy!


Rhubarb

Spring foods rhubarb

This plant might look like red-hued celery, but if you’ve ever been adventurous enough to cook with it, you know that this vegetable is much more flavorful than its vibrant twin. Tart rhubarb loves to partner with fruit to become a sweet treat. (Just don’t eat the leaves—they’re poisonous!) Rhubarb is high in catechins, the same compound that gives green tea its belly-fat fighting properties. Catechins blast adipose tissue by triggering the release of fat from fat cells (particularly in the belly) and then speed up the liver’s capacity for turning that fat into energy.

How to  Eat It: Wash, dry, and trim the stalk at the root and leaves. Cut a slit under the edge of the rhubarb skin at one end and pull down the remove the stringy fibers, similar to what you would do with celery. Cut stalks into 2-inch pieces, toss with cinnamon, honey, lemon zest, and vanilla extract and roast in a 350-degree oven until the rhubarb is tender, about 30 minutes. Serve on top of some full-fat Greek yogurt and top with crunchy pistachios.


 Mushrooms

Spring foods morel mushroomsThese mushrooms are the third highest vegetable source of vitamin D (only behind two other mushrooms), serving you 23 percent of your daily value in a single cup. This vitamin has many biological functions beyond its classic role in bone metabolism, one of which is regulating your immune system. One study found that when vitamin D concentrations were low in a group of runners had a biomarker for increased inflammation. When your body is in a state of chronic inflammation, it can lead to clogged arteries, worsened insulin resistance, and even weight gain. So besides climbing out of that cold, dreary hole that you dug yourself into this winter and catching some Vitamin-D-producing rays, make sure to grab some morel mushrooms!

How to  Eat It: These wild mushrooms are prized for their smoky, nutty flavor, which pairs well with Parmesan in a risotto. First, because of their folds and ridges, they’ll need to be washed under cool water and scrubbed thoroughly. Sautée them up with olive oil, a little butter, and chopped garlic until golden brown. Season with salt, pepper, fresh thyme, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. Throw on top of risotto, like this one from Pinch of Yum, with freshly grated parmesan and some lemon zest.


Asparagus

Spring foods asparagus

The ultimate spring vegetable, asparagus is rich in potassium and low in sodium, which helps your body achieve proper electrolyte balance and works to reduce bloating. Add the plant’s anti-inflammatory phytonutrients and health-promoting antioxidants—like glutathione, a detoxifying compound that helps break down carcinogens and other harmful free radicals—and you’ve got yourself a powerful weight-loss arrow in your quiver.

How to  Eat It: You probably already know that these delicious veggies don’t need much to make them taste great, but feel free to shake things up a bit with a quick vinaigrette. Whisk together olive oil, lemon zest, dijon mustard, white wine vinegar, and minced garlic. Pour half the vinaigrette over the spears and grill until tender. Once cooked, plate and drizzle the rest of the vinaigrette on top.


Red Leaf Lettuce

Spring foods red leaf lettuce

One serving of red leaf lettuce is only 14 calories, but it’s bursting with fiber. It’s one of the world’s greatest weight loss foods because it will fill you up and keep you feeling full for hours after you eat it. Even better, two generous cups of lettuce provide 100 percent of your daily vitamin K requirement for strong, healthy bones. A report from the Nurses’ Health Study suggests that women who eat a serving of lettuce every day cut the risk of hip fracture by 30 percent than when compared with eating just one serving a week.

How to  Eat It: Create a simple vinaigrette with red wine vinegar, dijon mustard, olive oil, minced shallots, a touch of honey, salt, and pepper. Combine roughly chopped red leaf lettuce with arugula, another spring lettuce, and top with spring veggies like roasted beets, orange slices, and walnuts.


Peas

Spring foods peas

You may have pushed them around your plate as a kid, but we’re hoping that stopped when you learned of their anti-aging, immune-strengthening, and energy-boosting antioxidants. Besides teeming with carotenoids and polyphenols, these little green poppers contain a hefty 7 grams of hunger-quelling fiber and 8 grams of muscle-building protein per cup!

How to Eat It: To elevate the humble pea, saute up some crispy prosciutto. Add some finely chopped white onion and a bit of minced garlic. Once tender, add in your peas, and a little bit of chicken stock, and simmer until peas are tender. Add back in the prosciutto, chopped fresh parsley, and mint, and toss it all together with your favorite pasta and freshly grated parmesan.


Artichokes

Spring foods artichokes

Unfortunately, a hefty, creamy artichoke dip will never make it onto any diet-friendly list, but one of its main ingredients does! One medium artichoke boasts an impressive 10.3 grams of fiber, including inulin, a prebiotic soluble fiber that helps promote the growth of beneficial intestinal bacteria. Incorporating it into your diet may also aid weight loss efforts—for every 10 grams of fiber you eat daily, your middle will carry almost 4 percent less flab, according to researchers. On top of that, artichokes contain a compound called cynarine, which promotes fat digestion and can serve as a natural diuretic by helping to eliminate water retention.

How to Eat It: When was the last time you ate a whole artichoke? Well, with whole artichokes fresh and in season, now’s a perfect time. Follow blogger Camille Style’s recipe for Grilled Artichokes with Lemon Garlic Aioli. She walks you through how to cut, trim, cook, and dress them with her deliciously simple parsley oil. If you feel the aioli is a little too heavy, sub it out for a plain, full-fat Greek yogurt and combine with roasted, caramelized garlic and fresh lemon juice.


 Onions

Spring foods vidalia onions

The Vidalia Onion earns the title of one of the nation’s most iconic agricultural products, having been discovered accidentally in the state of Georgia and rocketing to popularity. And just like Champagne has to be from France, a Vidalia onion has to be from Georgia. These onions are a rich source of fructooligosaccharides, a cluster of fructose molecules that lead to better gastrointestinal health and improved digestion by stimulating the growth of healthy bacteria and suppressing the growth of harmful ones. Want more ways to improve your gut health?

How to Eat It: Vidalias are so sweet, delicious, and versatile, it’s hard to pick just one recipe to share. For starters, they’re the perfect onion to add to your summer BBQ: lightly coat with canola oil, salt, and pepper and throw on the grill to get some good caramelization before adding to your burger. Looking to indulge a little? Make these Healthy, Baked (not fried!) Onion Rings from How Sweet It Is.


Radishes

Spring foods radish

After a winter of blues and grays, it’s nice to get a little pop of color in your life. Colorful vegetables are key to weight loss, and radishes are no exception. Their red hue is due to anthocyanins, a phytochemical that has been shown to burn fat and reduce the risk of diabetes. They’ve also been shown to reduce cholesterol, insulin resistance, and inflammation. In a Japanese study, rats fed radishes for three weeks showed reduced levels of bad cholesterol and insulin and a boost in good HDL cholesterol.

How to  Eat It: Eat radishes whole as a high-fiber, belly-filling snack, add a layer of slices to a goat cheese toast, use them as a salad garnish, or make them the star of the salad alongside another seasonal veggie, the carrot, in this Ginger Carrot Radish Salad by blogger, Healthy Seasonal Recipes.


Fennel

Spring foods fennel

Shimmy into those cute spring fashions with confidence by adding fennel to your meals. Although it’s known to be a winter veggie, it’s still in peak season during the early spring. Cherished for its licorice-like flavoring, fennel contains a unique blend of phytonutrients—including the flavonoids rutin and quercetin—that make it a powerful antioxidant. These active compounds help to reduce inflammation, and when combined with the fiber that’s already present in fennel, they can help eliminate potentially carcinogenic toxins from the colon to prevent colon cancer.

How to  Eat It: Make its fronds into pesto, and use the rest in raw fennel, apple, and celery salad or roast it up and add it to your creamy mashed potatoes.


Apricots

Spring foods apricot

These sun-like fruits are sure to brighten your day. While dried apricots are a good source of fiber and iron, they’re also more concentrated in sugar—which is why they’re one of the 20 Healthy Foods You Better Eat in Moderation. Pick up some fresh ones during their short season in late spring to load up on vitamin A (a nutrient that helps your skin glow) and potassium. When you don’t have enough of this essential mineral, it can make your body hold onto water, resulting in weight gain. Besides flushing out extra water weight, potassium also keeps your metabolism running high, and is crucial for the digestion of nutrients such as carbohydrates and fat, as well as the absorption of energy from these nutrients.

How to  Eat It: These juicy sweet and tart fruits are such rarities fresh, so allow them to be the star of your dish. Combine them with blueberries to make a fruit crisp, saute them up to make an apricot compote you can serve over ice cream or yogurt, make a batch of apricot jam you can enjoy throughout the summer, or eat them whole with this Roasted Apricots with Ricotta and Honey recipe from Kitchen Repertoire.


Spinach

Spring foods spinach

Spinach might be available year round, but the freshest, most tender spinach is easily obtainable in the spring. We love it because it’s rich in muscle-building protein and iron, satiating fiber and vitamins A, C, and K. It’s truly one of the healthiest greens out there. It also contains powerful appetite-suppressing compounds called thylakoids to keep your bikini body “diet” on track. A recently published long-term study at Lund University in Sweden found that having a drink containing thylakoids before breakfast could significantly reduce cravings and promote weight loss. Add this leafy spring green to your meals liberally throughout your day, and you’ll feel your cravings start to vanish.

How to Eat It: Spinach is undoubtedly one of the most versatile foods out there. Due to its subtle flavor and texture, spinach can be added to many meals undetected. Toss it in your morning smoothies, whip up a lunchtime salad or soup, use it in sauces, pasta dishes, dips, and stir-fries, or sauté for a healthy side dish.


Radicchio

Spring foods radicchio

Radicchio is the small red or purple leaf that comes in ahead about the size of a softball. It’s one of the best dietary sources of polyphenols—powerful micronutrients that serve a role in preventing disease and losing weight. A study in the Journal of Nutrition found that people who consume 650 milligrams a day of polyphenols have a 30 percent chance of living longer than those who consume less than that. A cup of chicory leaves clocks in at about 235 milligrams, so consider adding a little leafy red into your leafy greens.

How to  Eat It: Firm heads of lettuce, like radicchio, take well to the transformative powers of the grill. Halve or quarter the heads and drizzle with olive oil. Grill over high heat until the outer leaves are blackened and wilted, and the center is softened. Serve radicchio drizzled with balsamic. Get the whole recipe for Grilled Radicchio with Fig Balsamic Syrup, Parmigiano, and Honey-Roasted Almonds from A Beautiful Plate.


Fava Beans

Spring foods fava beans

Similar in likeness to edamame, these green legumes come in their own pod. Besides containing a high concentration of thiamin, vitamin K, vitamin B6, selenium, and magnesium, they’re a great source of lean protein with a whopping 10 grams per cup. Protein is essential not only for bulking your biceps; it’s also essentially in increasing feelings of fullness, as well as helping the body retain its muscle while scorching fat to increase your weight loss. For more slim down tips, don’t miss these 30 Fascinating Weight Loss Tricks You Haven’t Tried.

How to  Eat It: Fava beans have a buttery texture and a lovely, nutty flavor, making them a great addition to soups. But when you get them fresh as you would in the spring, they can really shine in a salad, like From the Land We Live On’s Golden Beet and Fava Bean Salad with Fresh Mint and Crumbled Ricotta.


Dandelion Greens

Spring foods dandelion greens

Seeing those orangey yellow dandelions pop up is definitely one of the first signs of spring. But did you know that besides being a bit of a pest in the garden, they also make a great snack? These bitter-sweet spring greens are bursting with fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. They are also a diuretic, which means they can help blast excess weight by helping your body get rid of extra fluids. A recent study found that steaming the greens increased their total antioxidant properties by 67 percent. And studies have found that this plant is protective against obesity as well as depression, fatigue, immune system problems, and even cancer.

How to Eat It: Sub dandelion greens for spinach in salads, soups, smoothies, and quiches, or blend them into a pesto.


Watercress

Spring foods watercress

Don’t be fooled by its diminutive size—this tiny herb is a powerhouse of vitamins and minerals. In fact, it’s one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet making it our reigning healthiest vegetable. Gram for gram this slightly peppery green contains four times more beta-carotene than an apple, and a whopping 238 percent of your daily recommended dose of vitamin K per 100 grams—two compounds that keep skin dewy and youthful. What’s more, it might help diminish your risk of cancer. Results from a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggest daily supplementation of 85 grams of raw watercress (about two cups) could reduce DNA damage linked to cancer by 17 percent.

How to  Eat It: Exposure to heat may inactivate its cancer-fighting compounds, so it’s best to enjoy watercress raw in salads, cold-pressed juices or smoothies, and sandwiches.


Ramps

Spring foods ramps

With a mildly sweet flavor, these wild leeks are loaded with vitamins A and C and taste similar to onions and garlic. Like all variations of onions, ramps are also a great source of chromium—a mineral that helps with the metabolism of fats, carbs, and insulin. What’s more, they can pack up to a gram of satiating fiber a pop.

How to  Eat It: You can eat them raw, make pesto, or add them to eggs (with asparagus!) for an amazingly fresh tasting spring treat. We love them in Katie at the Kitchen Door’s protein- and fiber-packed Quinoa & Cauliflower Cakes with Wild Ramps. Ramp season is quick, so grab them when you see them or else you just might miss them.


Stinging Nettles

Spring foods singing nettles

Contrary to what you might think, the common nettle is more than a pesky, stinging weed. Since ancient times, it has been used as an important source of food, fiber, and nutraceuticals. An abundant spring green, nettles are also a powerful diuretic. This plant has been used for years in the UK as a springtime cleanse to rid the body of toxins after a winter filled with fatty foods.

How to  Eat It: Stinging nettles are best enjoyed as a hot tea for cleansing the liver and ridding the body of excess fluids. By steeping the leaves in water and straining (a French press pot works great for this) you can avoid being stung by the tiny hairs that coat the leaf stems.


Broccoli

Spring foods broccoli

There’s a reason almost every diet includes a hefty dose of broccoli. The green superfood is rich in sulforaphane, a compound that not only increases testosterone and fights off body fat storage but also blocks enzymes linked to joint destruction and inflammation.  If you want to stay lean and active for life, maintaining healthy joints is a must! The green veggies are also rich in vitamin C (a mere cup of the stuff can help you hit your daily mark), a nutrient that can lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol, which will further aid your toned body efforts.

How to  Eat It: You’ve probably been cooking broccoli since you learned how to whip up a bowl of pasta. And with the global market extending its season year-round, we know there’s no short supply. However, if you can get your hands on this spring-season-grown cruciferous veggie, we’d recommend eating it root-to-leaf, like Sassy Kitchen does in this Shaved Broccoli Stem Salad with Lemon and Pecorino.


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.

If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You!

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

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How To Bake The Perfect Fruit Cake

Welcome back for #Blogmas Day 13! Blogmas Is flying right by! To catch up here are the links to the first 12 days of #Blogmas

Blogmas Days 1-12

Blogmas Day 1 Blogmas Day 2 Blogmas Day 3 Blogmas Day 4 Blogmas Day 5 Blogmas Day 6  Blogmas Day 7  Blogmas Day 8 Blogmas Day 9 Blogmas Day 10  Blogmas Day 11  Blogmas Day 12


Quick history lesson! Before your grandma graced the Christmas table with a fruitcake centerpiece, the ancient Romans shaped pomegranate seeds, pine nuts, barley mash, raisins, and honeyed wine into a fruitcake-like concoction they named “satura.” And according to the New York Times, the Romans’ sweet and sour satura cake actually inspired the word satire. Pretty cool, huh?

While most folks have a love-hate relationship with this treat, everyone can basically agree that it certainly embodies tradition. Boasting a slew of festive ingredients like dried or candied fruits, rum, and butter, many families’ Christmas dinners are incomplete without fruit cake for dessert. So, why not make it a hit with everyone at your table—even the skeptics—with these tips?


Swap Brandy

Brandy

While brandy’s hints of oak and plum notes marry well with the cake’s fruity sweetness, folks who aren’t too fond of the booze can definitely switch it up. If you fancy vino, opt for using red wine instead. Or if you want to keep your cake alcohol-free, feel free to use your favorite fruit juice.


Coat Your Mixins With Flour

Flour

Before you add your dried fruit and nuts to the batter, coat them in flour first. This will ensure that all the good stuff won’t sink to the bottom of the cake when it bakes—and it will leave your guests wondering how they shoveled in the perfect bite each time.


Use Quality Spices

Cinnamon Sticks

Since fruitcake is sometimes spiced with warm seasonings like cinnamon, ginger, and cloves, you’re going to want to use the freshest spices possible to ensure your cake is worthy of a second helping.


Make Equal-Weight Substitutions

Dried Figs

If you’re not a fan of the candied fruit that traditional fruit cakes call for, you can totally swap it out for some yummier alternatives. We especially like golden raisins, cranberries, dates, and figs (Which are HIGH in potassium). If you’re swapping out any fruit or nuts, make sure you’re adding the same amount as the original recipe calls for. So if the OG recipe requires one cup of candied cherries and you’d prefer dried cranberries, substitute the cherries for the same weight (one cup, in this case) of crans.


Don’t Overfill The Pan

Overflowing cake

Make sure you’re filling your tins only two-thirds of the way with batter. Pouring past that mark can cause your fruitcake to overflow the rims of the baking dish—which means extra clean up time for you.


Set the Oven to the Perfect Temperature

Hand opening oven

Never bake your fruitcake at a temperature higher than 325 degrees Fahrenheit. (250 degrees to 325 degrees is best!) Baking your cake at a lower temperature ensures it will cook through evenly without drying out. To ensure it is done before you pop it out of the oven, insert a toothpick in the center of the cake. It should come out moist but not raw or doughy.


Keep Your Cake Moist

Applesauce and apples

Along with setting your oven to the right temperature to ensure your fruitcake doesn’t end up unpleasantly dry, try adding a cup of applesauce to the batter. And to further prevent your cake from drying out, keep a pan of hot water on a lower rack in the oven to add moisture while it bakes. Genius, right?!


Prevent It From Burning

Fruit Cake in baking pan

Since fruit cakes take their time to bake in the oven (about two and a half hours or more), line your baking pans with double layers of brown paper or waxed paper before you pour the batter; this will prevent the cakes from browning too much in the oven. Once it’s done, say hello to a perfectly moist and golden fruitcake!


Practice Portion Control

muffins

If you have trouble sticking to just one slice of the sweet stuff, opt for baking your fruitcake in muffin or cupcake tins for a perfectly portioned bite. Just remember to adjust the baking time; fruitcake muffins will take a shorter amount of time to bake. (You can use our toothpick trick mentioned above to test them.) 


Age it

Fruit cake

Just like good wine and cheese, a fruitcake must also age in order to reach its full potential. After your cake is baked and cooled, first wrap it in a layer of plastic wrap followed by foil paper, and then stick the entire thing in an airtight container. This will ensure that your fruitcake won’t take on any funky smells or flavors. Store it in a cool, dry place (not the fridge or freezer because the super low temperatures will halt the aging process, which you don’t want!) like your pantry or cupboard. I recommend aging your fruit cake for one to three months, if possible so that all of the ingredients marry well. In fact, with the right preservation methods and a quality air-tight container, an auction house was able to sell a 27-year-old fruitcake for $6,000!


If You’re Aging It…

Sliced Fruit cake

Make sure to also “feed it” every week. Feeding, or moistening the cake with alcohol, will ensure your cake ages properly and doesn’t go dry. (The alcohol is also the reason a fruitcake can last without going bad!) Simply coat the cake evenly so that you don’t end up with any soggy parts.

I like pouring the liquor of choice (from brandy to rum to whiskey or cognac) into spray bottles, poking evenly-spaced holes into the cake, and then spraying away. This will ensure the cake is evenly fed. Repeat this weekly. Speaking of booze, if you like to hit up cocktail parties and happy hours.


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.

If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You!

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Poshmark: AmandaLei

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Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

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Probiotic That’s Not Yogurt

I know that I said yesterday that I decided to start #blogmas early. As I was figuring out what to write today I came across this post that I had saved. I hope you enjoy today’s post and all links will be provided at the end of every post.

If you missed yesterday’s post about some Amazing Holiday Treats you can Click Here


You’ve probably heard a great deal about the importance of probiotics lately, and how they are key to maintaining good overall health.  explains that a healthy gut leads to improved digestion, better weight management, and a reduced risk of chronic disease.

These days, probiotics are so popular they’re already available in cookies, teas, and yogurts—and now food giant Kellogg’s is getting into the game with another easy way to rev up your good bacteria intake: cold cereal. To that end, they’ve launched a new wellness brand, HI! Happy Inside, which aims to bring the power of probiotics to your daily breakfast in three different flavors (coconut crunch, blueberry, and strawberry).

The selling point here is that the cereal improves the benefits of probiotics by combining them with two other big digestion players, prebiotics and fiber. Each of the three flavors offers one billion CFU probiotics, 2.5 grams of prebiotics, and nine grams of fiber.


Prebiotics vs. Probiotics What’s the Difference?

If you are wondering what the difference is between probiotics and prebiotics, you’re not the only one. Probiotics are live bacteria we eat to promote a healthy gut microbiome, whereas prebiotics is a type of fiber that feeds the bacteria living in our gut.


Be Mindful of The Prebiotic and Probiotic Sources

It’s worth noting that not all probiotics are created equal. It is important to consider the type of strain added to a product because different strains promote different health outcomes. It is ideal to have at least 1 billion CFU per serving, which is usually why companies use a mix of strains.

And just like with probiotics, it’s important to be aware of the prebiotics used in the products you consume as well. The prebiotic used in Hi! Happy Inside cereal is inulin, which comes from chicory root. This is a very common source of prebiotics and can promote gut health. However, some people do experience stomach upset, loose stools, and cramping when they take too much inulin.


A Good Source of Fiber

Fiber is also a good component of gut health,  four grams of fiber per serving is usually recommended. Given that this cereal is made mostly with whole grains and contains nine grams of fiber per serving, it can be helpful in reaching your daily fiber goals, as women need approximately 25 grams per day and men need 37.


What About Sugar?

But even though this cereal can boost your prebiotic, probiotic, and fiber intake, Davidson says it’s important to keep in mind that each serving contains 9 grams of sugar. That comes from a mix of natural sources (milk, yogurt, and berries) and added sugar in the form of cane syrup, cane sugar, and regular table sugar. The fiber in this cereal will help to slow down the absorption of sugar, meaning it won’t have as big of an effect on your blood sugar levels overall.

SHOP HI! HAPPY INSIDE CEREALS NOW ON AMAZON


Thank You!

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Poshmark: AmandaLei

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Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

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How To Recover From Thanksgiving

4,500 calories. That’s how much food energy the average American consumes on Thanksgiving, according to the Calorie Control Council. That sort of energy blitz would be a major blow to your weight loss goals at any time of year. But Thanksgiving marks the beginning of a five-week period of holiday parties and other festive social events where we all want to look and feel our best—and there will be plenty opportunities to eat and drink to excess. It’s enough to make you want to throw your hands up and completely write off the whole month of December.

The hard truth? There’s no silver bullet to recovering from the gastronomic onslaught that is the last Thursday in November. But by adopting some of the small and manageable changes below, you can feel slimmer, rev your metabolism, tackle the rest of the holiday season mindfully and ring in the New Year feeling good about your health-and-fitness goals for 2019.


Add Dumbbells to Your Black Friday List

No time for the gym? Invest in a pair of dumbbells. Free weights and your own body weight are all you need to challenge every major muscle group in your body. The more muscle you can pack on, the faster you’ll be burning the extra food energy you gobbled up at Thanksgiving and will continue to consume over the holiday season.


Get to Stepping

The time between Thanksgiving and New Year’s is a whirl of activities, get-togethers, and obligations. That can mean you’ve got less time to work out and recover from a feeding frenzy. So do yourself a favor. Instead of waiting to be active at the gym, sneak in steps all day long. Invest in a pedometer or a Fitbit and try to hit at least 10,000 steps a day. This way, if you miss a workout, you’ll know you’ve already fit in some movement, and it won’t throw your progress totally off track.


Swap Egg Nog for Green Tea

You can get back on track ASAP by drinking green tea every day. In a recent 12-week study, participants who drank 4 to 5 cups of green tea daily, then did a 25-minute workout, lost an average of two more pounds and more belly fat than the non-tea-drinking exercisers. Why? The brew contains catechins, a type of antioxidant that triggers the release of fat from fat cells and helps speed the liver’s capacity for turning fat into energy.


Fill Up on Fiber and Protein

If you want to lose weight, it’s important to keep your blood-sugar levels stable, so you don’t overeat. That’s key when trying to recover after Thanksgiving and throughout December.  To help you stay fuller longer, make sure that every time you eat, you’re consuming a combination of fiber (one of the most satiating nutrients out there) and protein.


Work Out First Thing

The best strategy for not looking and feeling like 10lbs of sausage in a 5lb bag after Thanksgiving is to work out soon after waking up. Hit the gym, take a long stroll or workout at home and do some treadmill sprints on an empty stomach to burn fat. Your body is already in a calorie deficit, and it will ignite your body’s fat-burning ability. Glycogen levels are depleted during sleep so your body will utilize body fat as an energy source.


Stop Eating at Sunset

Make winter’s short days an advantage: Use the last of the sunlight as a cue to stop eating. This may help you lose more weight, even if you eat more food throughout the day, according to a study published in the journal Cell Metabolism. Researchers put groups of mice on a high-fat, high-calorie diet for 100 days. Half of them were allowed to nibble throughout the night and day on a healthy, controlled diet, while the others only had access to food for eight hours but could eat whatever they wanted. The result of the 16-hour food ban? The fasting mice stayed lean, while the mice who noshed ’round the clock became obese—even though both groups consumed the same amount of calories!


Take Hot Bedtime Showers

A UCLA study of some of the world’s last remaining hunter-gatherer tribes noted that drops in temperature were an important sleep cue for our paleolithic forebears. We no longer sleep under the stars that much, but you but you can recreate a sunset-like temperature dip by taking a hot bath or shower. That pause to refresh can help you fall asleep faster and make shuteye — prime pound-shedding time.


Let Some Winter in

A striking new study published in the journal Diabetes suggests that turning down the heat in winter may help us attack belly fat while we sleep. Colder temperatures subtly enhance the effectiveness of our stores of brown fat — fat that keeps you warm by burning through the fat stored in your belly. Participants spent a few weeks sleeping in bedrooms with varying temperatures: a neutral 75 degrees, a cool 66 degrees, and a balmy 81 degrees. After four weeks of sleeping at 66 degrees, the subjects had almost doubled their volumes of brown fat. (And yes, that means they lost belly fat.)


Eat an Apple Every Day

This crisp, refreshing fruit is among the most super of superfoods: Apples boast the powerful antioxidant quercetin and vitamins C and B-6, which keep your cholesterol levels low and slash your risk for heart disease. But thanks to their high fiber count, an apple a day can do more than keep the doctor away — it can help you trim down during the holidays too.


Make Healthy Cocktails

The holiday season doesn’t only bring laughter, cheer, and goodwill to all — it also brings unwanted weight gain from all those festive foods. It’s inevitable that you’ll lose gym time or splurge on “just one more” piece (we’ve all been I’ve been there this week) of the pie, but don’t let that stop you from making healthy choices. Instead of traditional cocktails like eggnog, or sugar-laden spiced cider, opt for a Hot Toddy, which is made with ginger, tea, and whiskey!


Get Intense

Interval training is the best way to shock your body back into shape, increase your metabolism, improve your cholesterol profile, and improve insulin sensitivity, especially during the holidays when you’re being pulled in every direction. At the gym, sign up for a HIIT class, or turn your favorite aerobic exercise (running, biking, even walking) into an interval workout by adding periods of intense speed (start with 30 to 60 seconds) followed by periods of rest (normal speed) for the same amount of time. Do this six to 10 times to complete a fat-slashing workout. As you get better, slowly increase the amount of time of increased intensity.


Fit in Quick Reps

A busy holiday schedule of parties, shopping and gift wrapping isn’t a reason to skip your workouts and lose some of that turkey weight. In fact, slacking off could slow your slim-down progress. Thankfully, fitting in fitness doesn’t have to be time-consuming. Trade exhaustive hourlong sessions for one daily resistance exercise (like a bicep curl, squat, lunge or shoulder press). Spending five minutes doing one daily resistance exercise is all it takes to build and maintain muscle, reduce fat, and protect bones.


Learn to Love Legumes

You’re not socially obligated to scarf cheese dip (But.. Dip). Whip up some hummus instead. Legumes such as lentils ( If you can have lentils) and chickpeas, a rich source of vegetarian protein, have been shown to reduce inflammation, lower cholesterol, promote fat metabolism and boost satiety. They’re also a source of resistant starch, a slow-digesting fiber that triggers the release of acetate, a molecule in the gut that tells the brain when to stop eating.


De-bloat with Fruit Salad

Do your pants seem to be snugger than they were just a day or two before? That rich, salty holiday meal and sugary wine could be causing water retention and constipation. Working bloat-fighting foods into your diet can ease your discomfort and help you slough off a holiday bulge. Kiwi, honeydew melon and papaya all contain compounds that kick sluggish bowels into gear and fight water retention. Use them in a fruit salad or keep them around the house to snack on throughout the season.


Take a Long Winter’s Nap

Aim for at least 7 hours of sleep a night ( I get It stress might be keeping you up) If you are looking for a natural way of destressing Click Here to learn all about meditation and how it can help with stress). Slacking on shut-eye depletes your energy levels and wreaks havoc on your hormones, causing you to eat more. Over time, this can contribute to significant weight gain, especially in the wake of a 4,500-calorie holiday meal. In fact, according to a recent study, losing as little as 30 minutes of sleep can up your risk of obesity by 17 percent!


Rooibos Tea

Rooibos tea is made from the leaves of the “red bush” plant, grown exclusively in the small Cederberg region of South Africa, near Cape Town. What makes rooibos tea particularly good for your belly is a unique and powerful flavonoid called Aspalathin. According to South African researchers, polyphenols and flavonoids found in the plant inhibit adipogenesis–the formation of new fat cells–by as much as 22 percent. The chemicals also help aid fat metabolism. Plus, Rooibos is naturally sweet so you won’t need to add sugar.


Drink Whole Milk

Studies conducted at The Nutrition Institute at the University of Tennessee suggest that consuming calcium — which whole milk has plenty of — may help your body metabolize fat more efficiently. Other studies have shown that increased calcium intake from dairy products (though not from supplemental calcium carbonate) caused study participants to poop out more fat as opposed to it sticking around on the body. (During Thanksgiving day alone, the average American eats a staggering 229 grams of fat, according to the Calorie Control Council!)


Muscle Up

Even when you’re at rest, your body is constantly burning calories. In fact, 75% of the calories that you burn each day are being used up just keeping you alive. “Resting metabolic rate” is much higher in people with more muscle, because every pound of muscle uses about 6 calories a day just to sustain itself. If you can pack on just five pounds of muscle and maintain it, you’ll burn the caloric equivalent of three pounds of fat over the course of a year. That’s especially useful when you’re overindulging over the festive period.


Make Hearty Weight-loss Soup

You know how the USDA wants you to get between five and nine servings of fruits and vegetables a day? Think of soup as your extra credit, the perfect chaser to a rich holiday meal. A well-crafted soup can give you three or four servings of vegetables and fruits, and presto, the fiber will have you feeling satisfied and less bloated.


Drink More Water

Most of us know that we need to drink water during workouts to stay hydrated, but many of us overlook the importance of sipping water throughout the day. Thirst can often be mistaken for hunger, so regularly drinking water can keep excess calories off of your holiday plate— and, more importantly, out of your mouth. Also, the extra sodium we eat during holiday meals will cause more water retention and belly bloat. You can flush it out with more water!


Order a Blender

First thing in the AM, silence your iPhone alarm, hit the shower and then make your way over to the blender. Buzzing up a fat-burning homemade smoothie for breakfast is a great way to stay full make up for some of that overindulgence on Thanksgiving.


Eat Out, Don’t Pig Out

People tend to eat at restaurants more during the holidays. That’s a recipe for packing on extra pounds. But it doesn’t have to be. When dining out, order two appetizers instead of an appetizer and an entrée. This is instant portion control, and usually, appetizers are lighter overall.


Forgo Diet Soda

Yeah, yeah, it has zero calories, but diet soda can derail your goals of staying in shape this season. Research published in the journal Trends in Endocrinology & Metabolism shows that artificially sweetened beverages may screw up the body’s normal metabolic response to sugar, actually increasing appetite! Increasingly, diet drinks are being linked with weight gain, metabolic syndrome and a host of other ills.


Watch the Wine

Wine contains 120 calories per 5 oz pour. It’s easy to overlook that, especially when you’re making merry and the vino is flowing. But after a few hefty pours, you’ve consumed over 400 calories — and that doesn’t include dinner! Cut back to one 5 oz pour a day, or scale back your drinking overall by 25%, and you’ll see a few pounds come off and to blast even more fat.


Snack on Almonds

Cookies, brownies, candy canes. All kinds of empty-calorie treats are within easy reach during the holiday season, and they can add to the damage done on Turkey Day. Swap them out for almonds. Their combination of satiating protein and fiber will stave off snacking for hours! The nut is rich in the amino acid L-arginine, which can actually help you burn more fat and carbs during workouts, according to a study printed in the American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism.


Eat Three Square Meals

Bodybuilding lore holds that you must eat every few hours to keep muscles fueled and metabolism high. But don’t discount the weight-loss potential of three squares a day. A study in the journal Hepatology put two groups of men on weight-gain diets. One group had three small meals, with snacks in between, while the second group ate the same number of calories in three square meals. Although both groups gained weight, researchers found that belly fat — the dangerous kind that boosts heart-disease risk — only increased in the high-meal-frequency group.


Eat Bananas

The humble banana—botanically, actually a berry!—is perhaps the least-heralded supermarket staple, a superfood more associated with kids, monkeys and slapstick comedy than with steel-cut abs. But it can help you lose weight, reduce bloat and increase your energy.


 Ho-ho-hoing

The holiday season is all about good times with friends and family, and probably a few laughs. That’s a good thing for getting back in shape. Genuine laughter may cause a 10 to 20 percent increase in basal energy expenditure and resting heart rate, according to a study published in the International Journal of Obesity. That means a 10-15 minute giggle fest could burn up 40 to 170 calories.


Snack on Dark Chocolate

There’s plenty of chocolate around during the holidays, but you should concentrate on snacking on a little bit of the good and dark stuff. In a study by Swiss and German researchers, lucky participants ate about 1.5 ounces of dark chocolate daily for two weeks. Ultimately, these chocolate nibblers had lower stress-hormone levels and a more regulated metabolism than a control group. Scientists speculate that chemicals in cocoa, such as flavonoids, play a role in regulating metabolism by alleviating stress that can cause your fat-burning engines to go on the fritz. Should you think this is a license to go wild, take heed: I’m talking about small amounts of high-quality dark chocolate. Researchers say 1.5 ounces is enough. Not sure which brand to choose?

Click Here if you would like to learn some of the best dark chocolate bars around


Obey the 80% Rule

Holiday buffets make it easy to supplement the damage you did on Thanksgiving. Your move? Eat until you’re 80% full, then stop. In Japan, this method is called Hara Hachi Bun Me, which roughly translates to “eat until you are eight parts (out of ten) full.” Remember, you can always eat again later.


Make Detox Water

H2O can rev your metabolism, help you lose serious weight and maintain a flat belly. Now take it to the next level. Combine plain water with proven fat-burning superfoods to create detox water, and you’ll have an elixir that energizes you, fights bloating and helps you achieve your weight loss goals.


After The Turkey

Salmon may be the very best protein for your metabolism. That’s because most cases of an underactive thyroid are due to inflammation of the gland, and salmon boasts significant anti-inflammatory properties, thanks to its rich omega-3 fatty acid content. In fact, one study of weight loss and seafood consumption showed salmon to be the most effective at reducing inflammation — better than cod, fish oil, or a no-fish diet! The fatty acids may also trigger cells in the liver to burn more fat, according to a recent study published in The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry.


Increase Fiber

A Thanksgiving meal can really outstay its welcome. Send it on its way — ahem — by increasing your fiber intake in the holiday’s aftermath. Aim to consume more fiber from less processed sources, such as fresh fruits and vegetables. A good goal is 25 to 38 grams daily. It’s easy to ensure you’re getting enough.


Boost Your Metabolism with Coffee

In addition to green tea, coffee is one of the best drinks for weight loss because it boosts your metabolism. According to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the average metabolic rate of people who drank caffeinated coffee was 16 percent higher than that of those who drank decaf! A cup of black coffee is a good choice for a pre-workout beverage, too: Researchers found that cyclists who took a caffeine supplement were able to ride about a mile farther than those who took a placebo. Make yours a venti (or a Trentsaand skip the sweeteners.


Take Vitamin D

If there’s one supplement most Americans should be taking, it’s vitamin D. It’s essential for preserving metabolism-revving muscle tissue, but researchers estimate that only 20 percent of Americans get enough in their diet. You can nail 90 percent of your recommended daily value (400 IU) in a 3.5-ounce serving of salmon, but taking a daily supplement makes a lot of sense. Other good dietary sources of D: tuna, fortified milk and cereal, and eggs.


Increase Fat Burn 73%

While drinking in moderation every so often won’t do too much harm to your waistline, making it a habit can slow down your metabolic rate. Why? When your body has a cocktail to break down, it takes precedence over any food that you’ve already eaten that’s waiting to be digested. This slows down the entire metabolic process. In fact, some researchers claim boozing can decrease the body’s fat-burning ability by up to 73 percent! On the occasions that you decided to indulge, stick to low-calorie drinks. Alternate your alcohol with water to slow your pace, and cut yourself off after two drinks. Avoid ordering high-cal bar food like fries and burgers.


Make Fat-burning Pasta

Yes, you can eat pasta and lose weight! If you’ve ever been to Italy, you may have marveled at how Italians maintain their slim figures when they consume carb-laden dishes on a daily basis. Here’s the deal: They use simple, wholesome and fresh ingredients, and they keep things small.


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out and I will be more than happy to answer any questions, comments or concerns you may have. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can ALWAYS find my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.

If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching you can contact me my from all of my links the I left below.


Thank You!

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

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You Won’t Believe It’s Dairy Free

Ditching dairy has liberated many people from certain body responses and weight troubles, but there are few foods that celebrate the sunshine quite like a cool, sweet treat. But you don’t have to subject yourself to congestion and tummy aches or sabotage your six-packs goals just to enjoy an ice cream cone. I curated and compiled some delicious and healthy non-dairy, frozen treats that fit seamlessly into any meal or dietary plan; from ice cream sandwiches to frozen fruit kabobs to sorbet, the health foodie god and goddesses have you covered! Got a sweet tooth?

HEALTHY CHOCOLATE BANANA ICE CREAM

Nutrition: 213 calories, 5.5 g fat (<1 g saturated), 24 mg sodium, 42.1 g carbs, 5 g fiber, 21.6 g sugars, 4 g protein

The secret in this mouth-watering recipe is almond butter. Aside from making the ice cream more delicious and satiating, almonds are one of the best nuts for weight loss, thanks to the amino acid L-arginine, which according to Mayo Clinic researchers, reduces belly fat—and the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Just make sure to opt for an all-natural or organic brand that doesn’t contain hydrogenated oils or added sugars.

Get the recipe from Eating Bird Food.


TWO INGREDIENT RASPBERRY ICE CREAM

Nutrition: 185 calories, 1.4 g fat (0 mg sodium), 3 mg sodium, 45.3 g carbs, 13.1 g fiber, 21.2 g sugar, 3.1 g protein

Who knew you could combine frozen bananas and raspberries to create such a seemingly sinful treat? You already know the flat belly effects of our yellow friend, but raspberries also bring waist-whittling effects to the table. Packing more fiber and liquid than most other fruits, they boost feelings of satiety without doing any damage to your waistline.

Get the recipe from Create N Plate.


CANTALOUPE POPSICLES

Nutrition: 115 calories, 6.2 g fat (3.9 g saturated), 12 mg sodium, 15.4 g carbs, 0 g fiber, 14.7 g sugar, 1 g protein

Aside from being low in calories, juicy and extremely hydrating, cantaloupe boasts potassium to aid in post-sweat recovery. And what better way to reward yourself from a hot sweaty run than to bite into one of these popsicles?

Get the recipe from Damn Delicious.



CARROT CAKE ICE CREAM SANDWICHES

Nutrition: 260 calories, 9.9 g fat (8.2 g saturated), 197 mg sodium, 43 g carbs, 6 g fiber, 11.3 g sugar, 4.1 g protein

You had us at ice cream sandwiches and carrot cake. But this recipe is stacked with slimming foods including almond milk, coconut oil, cinnamon, and walnuts. In fact, walnuts are one of the best dietary sources of polyunsaturated fats, which activate genes that reduce fat storage and improve insulin metabolism. Plus, vegan, dairy-free and gluten-free? This is a health foodie jackpot.

Get the recipe from She Likes Food.


WATERMELON PINEAPPLE ICE POPS

Nutrition: 42.5 calories, 0 g fat (0 g saturated), 25.2 mg sodium, 10.6 g carbs, 1 g fiber, 8.4 g sugar, 1 g protein (calculated with coconut water)

With summer right around the corner and temperatures rising, cool off and stay hydrated with one of these fruity ice pops. P.S. Watermelon has been shown to reduce bloat, decrease the accumulation of body fat, and according to a Spanish study, reduce muscle fatigue!

Get the recipe from Against All Grain.


GRAPEFRUIT SORBET

Nutrition: 115 calories, 0 g fat (0 g saturated), 0 mg sodium, 30.2 g carbs, 1.4 g fiber, 28.8 g sugars, 1 g protein

Grapefruit is one of the most potent weight loss superfoods. In fact, a study printed in the journal Metabolism found the eating half a grapefruit before meals may help reduce belly fat, lower cholesterol levels and shrink your waist by up to an inch in just six weeks (thanks to vitamin C)! But that’s not even the half of it — C (and this recipe provides 80 percent of your daily quota) also helps build up and repair skin collagen, keeps you hydrated and can even boost your metabolism!

Get the recipe from How Sweet Eats.


FRUIT JUICE SNOW CONES

Nutrition: 87 calories, 0 g fat (0 g saturated), 0 mg sodium, 22 g carbs, 1 g fiber, 20.8 g sugar, 0 g protein

Skip the artificial chemicals and whip up this dye-free version for the munchkins instead. It’s made with real sugar and just 87 calories.

Get the recipe from Five Heart Home.


SMORES ICE CREAM SANDWICH

Nutrition: 221 calories, 10 g fat (7.6 g saturated), 101 mg sodium, 31.4 g carbs, 1.1 g fiber, 19.1 g sugar, 2.3 g protein

Not only is this recipe dairy-free, but it’s also void of gluten. Coconut milk is used to create a rich creamy filling that won’t leave you with an expanding waistline. Here’s why: It’s loaded with medium-chain triglycerides, a type of easily-digested healthy fat that helps fry unwanted flab.

Get the recipe from Go Dairy Free.


LAYERED BANANA SPLIT PROTEIN SMOOTHIE

Nutrition: 229 calories, 4.3 g saturated (0 g saturated), 15 mg sodium, 40.2 g carbs, 7 g fiber, 22.6 g sugar, 14.4 g protein

It’s hard to resist a banana split, let alone one that fits into your body goals and fitness plan. To boost its waist-whittling effects, use underripe bananas (a flavor that can be masked inside a smoothie). They’re rich in resistant starch, which as the name implies, resists digestion, passing through the small intestine without being digested. This boosts immunity, improves blood sugar, and feeds healthy gut bacteria, leading to prolonged feelings of fullness and more efficient fat oxidation.

Get the recipe from Ambitious Kitchen.


VANILLA PEACH POPS

Nutrition: 39 calories, 1.8 g fat (1 g saturated), 35 mg sodium, 6 g carbs, 1 g fiber, 5 g sugar, <1 g protein

While other forms of milk need to be fortified with vitamins, almond milk—like the non-dairy milk in this recipe— is naturally chock full of nutrients. Aside from being on the of the best healthy fats, almonds boast vitamin E, manganese, selenium, magnesium, potassium, zinc, iron, fiber, phosphorous and calcium. These pops are just 39 calories and have only 5 grams of sugar!

Get the recipe from Love and Lemons.


MATCHA MILKSHAKES

Nutrition: 93 calories, 4.8 g fat (2.5 g saturated), 74 mg sodium, 9 g carbs, 5 g fiber, 7.6 g sugar, 1.5 g protein

Matcha is a form of green tea that uses the entire leaf in powdered form and has been shown to speed up weight loss. In fact, one study found that men consumed 136 mg of EGCG—what you’ll find in a single 4-gram serving of matcha—lost twice as much weight and four times as much belly fat over 3 months than a placebo group. This is one milkshake you don’t want to pass up!

Get the recipe from Love and Lemons.


COPYCAT TRADER JOE’S GONE BANANAS

Nutrition: 169 calories, 10.8 g fat (8.3 g saturated), 17 mg sodium, 17 g carbs, 1.2 g fiber, 13.2 g sugar, 1.8 g protein

“The magic is in the coconut oil, which, when melted with the chocolate, makes a coating that hardens instantly on contact with the cold banana.” But that’s not all it does. Coconut oil is rich in the medium-chain saturated fat lauric acid, which converts into energy more easily than other types of fat, aiding in rapid weight loss.

Get the recipe from The View From Great Island.


CHOCOLATE-DRIZZLED FROZEN FRUIT SKEWERS

Nutrition: 93 calories, 3 g fat (2 g saturated), 9 mg sodium, 16.4 g carbs, 1.6 g fiber, 11.8 g sugar, 1.3 g protein

Fruit skewers just get a whole lot more appealing when you drizzle chocolate over them. And did we mention they can have waist-whittling effects? Just make sure you pick the right kind, not all chocolate is created equal. First and foremost, opt for dark, which is rich in cancer-fighting antioxidants. Then avoid anything that’s labeled “made with chocolate,” “chocolate-y,” or “chocolate-coated,” which likely is void of cocoa butter, the ingredient responsible for dark chocolate’s slimming rep.

Get the recipe from Carl’s Bad Cravings.




PEANUT BUTTER BANANA ICE CREAM SANDWICHES

Nutrition: 264 calories, 15 g fat (4.2 g saturated), 124 mg sodium, 27.6 g carbs, 2.6 g fiber, 18 g sugar, 7.8 g protein

PB and banana is a divine combo, but once you throw ice cream sandwich into the mix, it’s a foodgasm waiting to happen. From increased satiety, energy and fat burn to decreased risk of disease, peanut butter hosts a plethora of health benefits. And bananas are sky high in potassium and glucose, aiding in post-workout recovery. Whether you’re looking to slim down, boost your nutrient intake or refuel after a demanding workout, these sandwiches just might be the thing.

Get the recipe from She Likes Food.


PROTEIN POPS

Nutrition: 130 calories, 10 g fat (8.6 g saturated), 15 mg sodium, 7.3 g carbs, 1.4 g fiber, 3.9 g sugar, 5 g protein

Looking for some workout motivation? These protein pops are low in calories and contain a plethora of workout ingredients including Beta-Alanine which delays muscle fatigue, L-Carnitine, which increases fat breakdown for fuel and vitamin C, which accelerates muscle recovery.

Get the recipe from Grok Grub.


AVOCADO ICE POPS

Nutrition: 118 calories, 9.8 g fat (2.1 g saturated), 25 mg sodium, 6.3 g carbs, 2.2 g sugar, 2.3 g protein

Avocado is the creme de la creme of weight loss foods and for good reason: No other fruit is credited with spot-reducing belly fat, warding off hunger, boosting nutrient absorption, lowering cholesterol and fighting free-radicals. Plus, they’re super versatile and fit flawlessly into any recipe, like these chilling ice pops.

Get the recipe from Kirbie’s Cravings.


ICE CREAM BAR WITH RASPBERRY AND COCONUT

Nutrition: 251 calories, 17 g fat (14.8 g saturated), 9 mg sodium, 26.6 g carbs, 3 g fiber, 22.4 g sugar, 1.3 g protein

If you’re looking to be naughty, but not completely diet-sabotaging naughty, these ice cream bars got you covered. And don’t fret the fat content—it comes from waist shrinking coconut oil, which also kills bacteria, helps build and maintain lean muscle, promotes organ function and increases satiety.

Get the recipe from Sweet As Honey.


COCONUT SALTED CARAMEL AND CHOCOLATE POPSICLES

Nutrition: 234 calories, 16.3 g fat (13.6 g saturated), 131 mg sodium, 22.1 g carbs, 1 g fiber, 20.5 g sugar, 1.6 g protein

Combine the flab blasting benefits of coconut milk and coconut oil with those of dark chocolate and almonds, and you’ve got yourself one skinny dessert.

Get the recipe from The Foodie Teen.


VEGAN STRAWBERRIES & CREAM POPSICLES

Nutrition: 148 calories, 12.2 g fat ( 7.9 g saturated), 99 mg sodium, 7.9 g carbs, 1 g fiber, 6.5 g sugar, 2.4 g protein

Usually, we would warn to avoid any dessert that states “and cream,” but these vegan popsicles are an exception. They’re rich in antioxidants, fat-burning lauric acid, heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, and immunity-boosting vitamin C.

Get the recipe from May I Have That Recipe.


CINNAMON COCONUT ICE CREAM

Nutrition: 139 calories, 9.8 g fat (8.2 g saturated), 43 mg sodium, 13.3 g carbs, 1.2 g fiber, 10.7 g sugar, 1.1 g protein

Cinnamon is no small player when it comes to losing inches and belly fat. A series of studies from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that adding a heaping teaspoon cinnamon to a starchy meal may help stabilize blood sugar and ward off insulin spikes. Simple sugars are typically found in nutrient-void foods. Cinnamon moderates those fluctuations, keeping you away from the vending machine and the cookie aisle.

Get the recipe from Eat Healtjy, Eat Happy.


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? Some of these recipes are vegan some are not. You can always alter to make these recipes full vegan. If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You!

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

 

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………

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Bad Fiber

Most high-fiber foods deserve a lot of credit for amping up your nutrition, sustaining your energy, aiding weight loss, and much more. That’s why we know that your intentions are well-meaning, as you stroll through the grocery store with your cart and toss in products labeled with “high in fiber.” But it turns out that some fiber foods have enough negative characteristics or side effects that it’s not worth the good that they may do; some may even be sabotaging your waistline without you knowing it!


Baked Goods with “Added Fiber”

Sneaky way companies try to convince you junk food is good for you: Although these [cookies and brownies] may be better than their fiber-free counterparts, they offer little else in the way of nutrition… they may lead you to believe you can eat more since they tout their health’ benefits.


Quick Cook Oats

Steel-cut or rolled oats are great, but packets of instant oatmeal are a trap. “Quick cook oats are rolled oats that are cut into small pieces, pre-cooked by steaming, and usually accompanied with sugar-rich flavors such as apple strudel or maple brown sugar to seem appealing…While oats are one of the healthiest foods, instant oats are often loaded with added sugar, salt, and artificial coloring. The quick cooking oats also have a higher glycemic index, which means they cause your blood sugar to rise rapidly—a particular concern for diabetics and pre-diabetes.


Whole Wheat Bread

They have about 1.9 grams of fiber per slice, but it’s not exactly a blessing for your bikini body. It’s a food trap; whole wheat bread actually does not have much fiber. It may be a bit better than its white bread counterpart but still pales in comparison to the fiber in fruits and vegetables.


Fiber One Cottage Cheese

Indeed, cottage cheese makes a great snack or base for a meal since it is packed with protein, which is important for weight loss, adding fiber to cottage cheese makes this a heavily -processed product; Fiber One cottage cheese has five grams of added fiber. Stick with a basic cottage cheese in which the ingredients should just be cultured milk, cream, and salt, and then top it with mixed berries for naturally-occurring fiber.


High-Fiber Fruit Juice

While you may get some fiber and vitamin C from fortified juice, the negatives outweigh the good—especially when it comes to weight loss. When losing weight, you want to consume foods that will keep you satisfied, so that you are less likely to overeat later, A serving of fruit juice is four ounces or half a cup. For that half-cup of juice, you’ll get about 60 calories and 15 grams of carbohydrates. Most of us are drinking more like a 12-ounce cup, which means 180 calories and 45 grams of carbs. Yikes! If you’re looking to lose weight, stick with plain water. Infuse it with fresh herbs, fruit, and veggies if you’re looking for a splash of flavor.


Dried Fruit

Ever notice a handful of dried currants or apricots turns reaching into the tub for more and more? You’re not alone. “Dried fruit is packed with nutrients, but is very easy to overeat and extremely high in sugar,  Instead, opt for whole, fresh fruit. You will be more satiated, feel fuller longer, and be able to eat a large quantity.


Creamed Vegetable Soups

Put down that can opener; a dieting landmine lingers within these canned soups. Whether it be tomato, broccoli, or mushroom, these foods are more than what meets the eye, While you may still get the fiber from the vegetables—assuming they haven’t been cooked out—the addition of cream can add upward of 300 calories to what was meant to be an appetizer. Instead, opt for vegetable broth, a low-fat milk, or puree your vegetables without the cream.


Microwave Popcorn

Popcorn may have 3.6 grams of fiber per cup, but when it comes to fiber-filled weight loss foods, microwave popcorn is not one of them. If you’re not popping your own, or choosing an air-popped variety, chances are you’re consuming fiber-rich popcorn that comes with a high-calorie and saturated fat content. Be sure to read the ingredients and make sure you are getting just the popped corn.


Skinny Cow Ice Cream Sandwiches

I don’t mean to pick on anyone here, but this is a fiber-focused mission that we are on, and this is not where you ought to be getting it. “Skinny Cow ice cream sandwiches have three grams of fiber, added in from inulin. Fiber is naturally-occurring in plant-based foods, so when you find it in something like ice cream, you know it was added in. Inulin contributes fiber, but research shows it doesn’t have the same filling, blood sugar-stabilizing effects as naturally-occurring fiber—which is what you want when it comes to weight management. Craving something sweet? Make your own banana ice cream by blending frozen bananas with yogurt and sprinkling with your favorite toppings.


 Fruit Cups

This brand may not add sugar, but they do add cellulose and sugar alcohols. Too much sugar alcohols can lead to GI distress. Meanwhile, cellulose is the type of fiber that isn’t digestible and serves no other purpose than to aid in waste removal from your body. Instead, opt for a fresh, sliced fruit, made at home, with no additives.


High-Fiber Granola

Best to avoid granola if you struggle with portion control—even if it is high in fiber. “One-fourth of a cup of granola is considered a serving which is about the size of a golf ball, Depending on the brand, that serving size could have anywhere from 80 to 125 calories. If you were to have a cup, which is about the size of your fist, you would be consuming anywhere from 320 to 500 calories. Add a little milk or yogurt to that, and you’ll see how quickly the calories add up.” Yikes!


Fiber One Muffin Mix

Talk about muffins for a muffin top: “The first ingredient in this is sugar, which means it is the most prominent ingredient in the muffin. Don’t be fooled by products labeled with ‘fiber’ in the brand “Although they pack all this ‘junk’ into just 190 calories, remember that fiber from real food sources, like fruits, vegetables, and grains, will provide the fiber your body needs—as well as nutrients and vitamins, but without the extra calories.


Fruit Snacks

We know, we know; they can be darn tasty. But the chances are pretty good that you’ll want to avoid these treats. The other day at the grocery store, I saw some fruit snacks touting their fiber content. They did contain some real fruit juice and three grams of fiber per serving from added corn fiber, but they also contained sugar and corn syrup for a total of 10 grams of sugar per serving. That is not exactly a great fiber-sugar ratio for weight loss!


Whole Wheat Bagels

Regardless of what kind of bagels they are, they’re always high in carbohydrates and calories but lack very many vitamins, minerals, and protein. And then they are often consumed at breakfast with jellies, jams, butter, and other high-sugar or high-fat spreads. “Instead of a carbohydrate-rich breakfast, which is what would likely occur should you have a bagel, choose a protein-rich breakfast instead.



Cereals

Just because a cereal is labeled as ‘whole grain’ or ‘fiber-enriched’ does not make it healthy or a good choice for weight loss, warns our experts. “Frosted Mini Wheats, for example, boast about containing 23 percent of your daily value of fiber for adults, But what it doesn’t say is that it is made up of sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and a bunch of other preservatives and chemicals to make it last on the shelf. When looking for whole grain cereal, make sure that whole grains are the first ingredient and that sugar is not lurking too close behind.


Spaghetti

“There is a lot of confusion about healthy pasta. Unless it says ‘whole grain’ or ‘whole wheat,’ it does not include all three layers of the kernel. Be careful when reading labels and make sure to pick whole grain over whole wheat—otherwise, the glycemic index increases and the fiber count is negligible.


Pretty Much Anything Fortified With Fiber

If we didn’t name your favorite fiber-infused snack, it’s not necessarily off the hook. Fruit snacks, candy, cookies, and other sweet treats that are fortified with fiber may contain a little-added fiber, but these types of products offer little to no additional benefit nutritionally, It is highly unlikely that these will fill you up or provide you with the nutrition you need for healthy and effective weight loss.


Thank You!

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️


➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂