Breakfast Hummus

Humus for breakfast? Read on for all the delicious deets!

Lantana’s fruity hummuses are made with a white bean base (instead of the classic chickpea puree), and each offers a uniquely flavorful twist. The best part about this lineup is that it’s wildly versatile, so there’s a healthy flavor for every palette, and you can switch it up constantly.

Wondering how to incorporate this sweet and tangy spread into your morning meal? The fruity hummus is finding its way into all sorts of iconic pairs with consumers swapping out cream cheese on bagels for the new condiment. The line even successfully broke up peanut butter and jelly: “We’ve had feedback that people are replacing jelly in a peanut butter and hummus sandwich—sort of a protein bomb there,” Matt Gase, CEO of Lantana Foods, told Gourmet News.

In fact, just two tablespoons of the strawberry-infused spread packs in 60 calories, 0 grams of fat, 80 milligrams of sodium, 9 grams of carbs (2 grams of fiber, 4 grams of sugar), and 2 grams of protein. Now that’s a snack I can get behind!

Next time you whip up a batch of pancakes on Sunday morning, try swapping sugary maple syrup with a smear of Lantana’s Cherry hummus. Or try stirring the mango hummus into a crunchy bowl of granola or dolloping it into overnight oats for extra creaminess. When snack time rolls around, opt for dipping crudités into Lantana’s savory hummuses such as the Sriracha Carrot, Edamame, Cauliflower, and Hatch Chile. I can’t think of a better way to make breakfast and snack time healthy and exciting

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 ❤️️

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

➡️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 🙂

 

Healthy Snacks On Amazon

I just want to take a moment and say welcome if you’re new and welcome back if you’ve been with me for awhile. My name is Amanda and I run the blog AmandaExplainsIt. I talk about everything related to the health and nutrition world with the occasional blog about pet health.

I am VERY excited to announce that I will be participating in my VERY FIRST blogmas! Yesterday I explained all the cool details about blogmas you can Click Here to read all about it!

Now on to today’s post

Whether you’re trying to order something healthy off the McDonald’s menu or any fast food menu or maybe you’re looking for a wholesome snack to munch on at work, I know it can be hard to make healthy choices all the time. What makes it easier? Shopping for healthy snacks on a health food site you’re probably already on all the time: Amazon. I’ve rounded up some of the healthiest packaged foods on the planet—many of which are offered on your favorite site to shop.

Whether you’re seeking high-protein snacks to sneak in your kid’s lunchbox, spouses lunch or you’re looking for low-carb goodies to snack on between meals, you’ll want to stock up on the tasty, healthy snacks you can buy on Amazon. To help you eat better each and every day, we scoured Amazon and hand-picked our favorite small bites, so all you have to do is click, buy, and wait for a delivery.

Nourish Snacks Chewy Chocolate Peanut Butter Granola Bites

Nourish snacks chocolate peanut butter bites

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

These mini granola bites come packed with indulgent cocoa and creamy peanut butter, as well as plant-based protein and fiber. You’ll also get a heart-healthy dose of omega-3s coming from the crunchy chia seeds!

Go Raw Sprouted Flax Snax

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Raw flax crackers, made from simple ingredients such as flax seeds and spices, are naturally gluten-free and rich in omega-3s. I’m a big fan of the snack and suggests topping them off with some sliced avocado (or how I eat them is just as is).

Pure Organic Peanut Butter Chocolate Ancient Grain and Nut Crispy Bar

Pure organic chocolate peanut butter bar

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

With hints of both sweet and salty, this organic, gluten-free snack hits the spot no matter what you’re craving. Not to mention, I LOVE and you’ll love that these clusters are made from a combination of mostly ancient grains and peanuts with just a touch of honey for sweetness.

Matt’s Munchies

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Think of this as a grown-up Fruit Roll-Up made solely of fruit puree and added vitamin C for freshness. Some of the varieties have spices or coconut shavings for added texture and flavor, but none of the add-ins raise any nutritional red flags. Pair a package with a small handful of almonds or walnuts to add some protein and additional fiber to your snack-time lineup.

Paleta Power Up Energy Bars

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Many “energy” bars often translate to “high-sugar” bars—they’re basically candy bars on steroids. That’s why I’m excited to find a product that delivers on both the nutritional and the flavor front. Paleta bars are vegan and gluten-free and deliver a good dose of protein and fiber. While some of these flavors I liked. I didn’t like Coconut Cacao Cashew Bar.

 

Peeled Snacks Dried Fruit

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Skip your morning supplements and dig into a bag of Peeled Snacks’ dried fruit instead. They contain no added sugars or artificial ingredients—just fruit! That’s how each bag winds up carrying such high amounts of vitamins! One bag of the Much-Ado-About-Mango flavor, for example, carries 30 percent of the day’s vitamin A and 20 percent of the day’s vitamin C.

I Heart Keenwah Chocolate Quinoa Clusters

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Quinoa isn’t just for your dinner plate anymore. Breakfast quinoa bowls and snacks made with the super-grain are both big trends right now. I (kinda) love that this bite-sized snack is wholesome and free of scary additives, yet tastes like sugary chocolate granola clusters. They even have an addictive crunch!

Justin’s Nut Butter Mini Peanut Butter Cups, Dark Chocolate

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Although candy shouldn’t be your go-to snack, I won’t fault you for noshing on a little something sweet to get you through the day. But if you’re going to indulge, you may as well do so without ingesting nasty chemicals and loads of sugar. If you love Justin’s nut butters, then you’re going to go ga-ga for these pint-sized peanut butter cups. Their tiny size means that calories and sugar stay at a low. Nuts for nut butter?

Luna Bar Nutz Over Chocolate

Luna bar nutz over chocolate

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

If you’re craving some chocolate but struggle with portion control, try noshing on these nutty dark chocolate Luna bars. They clock in at 200 calories and 3 grams of fiber per pop!

Organic Mini Perfect Bar

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

These mini-sized bars. She frequently turns to them as a quick, protein pick-me-up after spin classes and workouts. They basically taste like pure nut butter with a bit of a chewy crunch but somehow the makers of this truly delicious snack manage to sneak in things like kale and papaya. If I didn’t tell you, you wouldn’t be the wiser.

Quest Nutrition Protein Chips

Quest protein chips

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Quest’s delicious, protein-filled chips—which come in flavors like cheddar and sour cream—will tingle your taste buds without blowing your diet. One individual snack bag can even serve as a savory on-the-go replacement for a post-workout protein shake. Before you laugh us off, you should know I have two big reasons to back up our claim: The salt can help replace electrolytes lost after a sweaty workout, and one bag serves up as much protein as a 2.5-ounce chicken breast. Made from dried potatoes, a blend of milk protein and whey protein isolate, and a generous amount of seasonings, this crunchy snack is sure to put your sad bag of Lay’s to shame.

The New Primal Beef Thins

New Primal Beef thins

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

To make their signature jerky, The New Primal uses grass-fed beef that’s full of healthy omega-3s and CLA. CLA, or conjugated linoleic acid, isn’t as present in grain-fed cattle because the CLA comes directly from the grass. This fatty acid contains a group of chemicals that provide a wide variety of health benefits, including improved blood sugar regulation, maintenance of lean body mass, and reduced body fat.

Moon Cheese

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Yes, the name Moon Cheese is a bit odd, but I promise that this out-of-this-world snack (pun intended) is a healthy pick. The makers of this healthy snack use a patented technology that allows them to suck the moisture from their cheese without stripping away its natural nutrition or flavor. Because they don’t add anything thing else to the mix before packaging it up, it’s hard to go wrong snacking on these savory treats.

Nothin’ But Granola Cookies

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

With just 3.5 grams of the sweet stuff in each cookie, this sensible treat is sure to fit into just about anyone’s weight loss or fitness plan.

Wonderfully Raw Organic Vanilla Maple Coco-Roons

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Made from a blend of unsweetened coconut, almond flour, maple syrup, coconut oil, vanilla extract, and salt, these mini macaroons are the perfect way to indulge your sweet tooth without blowing a day’s worth of carbs.

Kashi Organic Sweet Potato Sunshine Cereal

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Made with just eight whole-food ingredients, this tasty, low-sugar cereal is one you can feel good about noshing on. Measure out a cup, toss it in a baggie, and bust it out next time your stomach starts to growl between meals.

Hail Merry Dark Chocolate Bites

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

A “guilt-free chocolate treat” is basically the stuff of marketing mythology, but these cute little snacks come as close as possible to that concept. The rich, two-bite treats are made with whole food ingredients like cocoa and coconut oil. These snack bites may become your new chocolatey addiction, and I’m totally not judging!

Why You Should Eat Spaghetti Squash And How To Cook It

We’ve all been there: You see the giant yellow squash in the store and are instantly reminded of all the low-carb meals you came across on Pinterest, but you’ve never actually mustered the courage to tackle the sought-after veggie. To help you finally sub your go-to box of noodles with this low-calorie alternative. Not only is it a delicious low-carb alternative to your favorite pastas, but it’s also jam-packed with skin-healing vitamin A, energizing B vitamins, flu-fighting vitamin C, and bone-protecting calcium.


How to cook spaghetti squash

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Cut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out all seeds, being careful not to remove the flesh.
  3. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Place cut side down on baking sheet and into the oven for one hour.
  5. With a fork, gently remove the flesh of the squash, almost fluffing it. Try not to go at it too hard—you want to keep all the strands intact to give it that spaghetti look.

 Tip: If you leave the skin intact, you can put squash back in and use that skin to hold it as a vessel, and it also makes for nice plating.

Now that the squash strands are removed from the skin, you can use them in any way that you would use spaghetti! The options are truly endless. Seeking a keto-friendly spaghetti squash dinner? Just mix the “noodles” or also called “zoodles” with marinated Cabecou cheese and a spicy pesto—you can even add an extra protein punch to the dish by tossing it with sliced grilled chicken or roasted salmon.


Should you replace wheat pasta with spaghetti squash?

Spaghetti squashBesides for the plethora of vitamins and nutrients that the winter veggie provides, swapping a two-ounce serving of conventional wheat-based spaghetti for the same size serving of spaghetti squash will save you over 180 calories. That means you’ll have more room to pile the spaghetti squash high (it’s less calorie-dense than traditional pasta) and make more room for fun sauces and toppings. If you’re not too keen on giving up your tried-and-true carb altogether, opt for experimenting with mixing a half serving of regular noodles with a few handfuls of spaghetti squash—you’ll get the best of both worlds!


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 I will be more than happy to answer any questions, comments, or concerns you may have. You can always email me 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.

If you or someone you know is looking for one on one coaching you can reach me at all the links that I mentioned above.


 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

Pinterest: Amanda Explains It

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

Earl Gray Tea For Health

What if I told you that you can slow down the aging process just by stepping into your local cafe? One of the most popular brews, Earl Grey tea, is made with a black tea base and oil of bergamot—an essential oil extracted from the Bergamot orange rind that’s praised for its countless health benefits and anti-aging properties.

According to a PloS One Journal study, bergamot oil increases autophagy—the process in which your body rids itself of damaged cells, keeping you young and preventing ailments such as cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, diabetes, liver disease, autoimmune diseases, and infections. What’s more, a study in the Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity journal found that supplementing with bergamot juice resulted in anti-aging and antioxidant responses.


Wondering how to get more bergamot oil into your life?

An easy way to incorporate it into your life is to simply drink Earl Grey tea, Earl Grey provides a lot of health benefits: Black tea contains many flavonoids (antioxidants) that help fight disease and illness. Black teas also contain fluoride, which can help to strengthen teeth and prevent cavities. Studies also show that drinking three cups of black tea daily can help to decrease LDL cholesterol and therefore decrease overall chances of heart disease. And the benefits don’t end there.

Bergamot oil is great for the skin, more specifically for scarring such as stretch marks, chicken pox, acne scars, and cold sores. It also helps to even out skin tone and is a popular ingredient in skin care items and makeup because of this. Besides clearing your skin and helping you look years younger, this magical ingredient in Earl Grey tea can also help flatten your tummy. It is a great natural diuretic so it can decrease bloating. Whether you drink Earl Grey or apply skincare products infused with the oil, there are many ways you can get more bergamot oil into your everyday routine.

Next time you step into your local Starbucks or coffee shop, skip the vanilla latte and go for the Earl Grey tea. If you’re not in the mood for a piping hot sip, try steeping a tea bag, pouring over ice, and then tossing it into a homemade smoothie for extra antioxidant powers and a refreshing flavor!

Plus, you can always buy a pack of Earl Grey tea to enjoy at home (this one’s an Amazon Choice pick). Whether you’re a tea lover or just starting out experimenting with different blends, the mild taste of Earl Grey is a welcome addition to your pantry. Consider this your new go-to beverage for better skin and a whole host of health benefits!

If you are looking for a tea that benefits your overall health and well being you can Click Here to learn how to make a delicious Turmeric Latte and if you don’t know the full benefits of Turmeric then you can Click Here to fully learn all the health benefits turmeric has for our bodies and your doggos overall health 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 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 if email isn’t your thing you can always reach out to me on social media all of my social media links are always linked in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.

If you are someone you know is looking for a coach to start a healthy lifestyle you can always reach out or you can send them to any of my links that are linked in the sections mentioned above.


 

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

Pinterest: Amanda Explains It

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

How To Shop At Whole Foods

After years of food shopping, you likely already have a handful of go-to grocery stores for everything from healthy daily staples to once-in-a-blue-moon treats, and we bet Whole Foods Market is definitely on your list. The popular grocer is known for selling a wide array of organic, quality products—vetting and shunning picks with hydrogenated fats and artificial colors, flavors, preservatives, and sweeteners—and sourcing only sustainably-farmed produce and humanely-raised meats. So when it comes to checking off your grocery list, you’re probably wondering about the best things to buy at Whole Foods.

That’s why I’ve gathered a list of healthy food and drink Items everything from wholesome snacks to meal prep staples. Next time you run to your local Whole Foods, jot these winning picks onto your list or you can open this post for reference. They’re actually worth it!

Enjoy Life Cookies

Enjoy life crunch chocolate chip cookies

A cookie is always a nice treat, but for those that need to eat gluten-free, that isn’t always the case. Gluten-free cookies can be a huge miss, but not with Enjoy Life’s crunchy chocolate chip cookies. If you’re one of the people that like soft cookies, they have those, too.


Tessamae Salad Dressings

tessemaes everything bagel ranch

Available in a variety of different flavors ranging from Everything Bagel to Green Goddess, I love using Tessamae dressings to add a flavorful kick to my salads. And not only are these dressings absolutely delicious, but they’re also keto-friendly, Whole30-approved, and free of dairy, sugar, and gluten!


Frozen Berries

frozen berriesFrozen berries are a must because they not only help us with detox, but they are a great fruit that is also low glycemic, meaning you don’t get that spike in blood sugar. Take your nutrition up a notch and grab a bag of wild blueberries because they have twice the amount of antioxidants as a regular blueberry.


GT’s Synergy Kombucha

synergy organic kombucha divine grape

I love GT’s Divine Grape Kombucha. It is rich in probiotics, great for the endocrine system supplying healthy nails, skin, and hair, and is great for building up the immune system and combating diseases.


Against The Grain Pizza Crust

against the grain pizza shell

Everyone needs a cheat day once in a while, and mine is pizza. Against The Grain’s crust is gluten-free and non-GMO, and since it’s made with hormone-free milk and eggs as well as tapioca starch, it doesn’t cause bloating like regular pizzas made with flours do.


Sprouted Nuts in Bulk

AlmondsI always look to the bulk section for my nuts and seeds, as buying in bulk is a game-changer (when you’re) trying to eat healthily and watch your budget. Sprouted nuts specifically can be very pricey, as sprouting makes food easier to digest and boosts its nutritional value by destroying anti-nutrients such as phytic acid and lectins. If you’re not feeling up to sprouting your own nuts, Whole Foods has got you covered!


Seafood

seafood assortmentWhole Foods is committed to sourcing their seafood from responsibly-managed fish farms and abundant, well-managed, wild-caught fisheries—meaning they source from fisheries that are committed to preventing overfishing. I like the fact that I know I am getting quality seafood each and every time I shop at Whole Foods. You cannot say that about other grocery stores.


Supplements & Vitamins

SupplementsIt’s important to purchase supplements from a trusted source because the supplement industry is not regulated [by the FDA], meaning you may not always get what the label promises. Whole Foods does the homework for you by only stocking their shelves with reputable products. Whole Foods thoroughly trains and educates their staff to scrutinize every product’s ingredients. The products on their shelves will never contain any fillers, hydrogenated oils, artificial colors, or preservatives. With so many supplement companies out there, it can seem overwhelming when deciding on a brand. When supplements are necessary, I always direct my clients to Whole Foods, as it is almost guaranteed they will at least be able to purchase a product where the ingredients on the label match what is actually inside the bottle.


KIND Fruit & Nut Bars

KIND fruit and nut bar

Whole Foods has one of the best selections of KIND bars. I especially love tossing a fruit-and-nut bar (the Almond & Apricot bar is a personal favorite) in my purse to have a healthy snack on hand at all times. The bar supplies protein, fiber, and healthy fats to help keep you fuller for longer!


Pre-Made Salad

salad barWhether I’m running errands or traveling, I always get excited to see a Whole Foods at meal time. I love to put together a salad bar lunch. As a vegetarian, there are so many options for me: there are usually a few tofu dishes and so many vegetable dishes to choose from!


Wonderful Pistachios, No Shells Roasted & Salted

wonderful pistachios, no shells roasted & salted

I can always count on Whole Foods to supply me with a full array of pretty much any nut my heart desires! I often reach for Wonderful Pistachios because they offer a satiating trio of plant-based protein, fiber, and healthy fat. Pistachios are one of the nuts highest in protein, and they make such great additions to so many dishes, from a nutritious topper for a nice cream to a crunchy topping for a salad. You can even crush them and use them as a breading for tofu or salmon.


Olives

Olive varietyWhole Foods has such a wonderful olive bar, and you can find a terrific variety. I like to put together a mix of all my favorite types. Olives are such a low-calorie snack and are full of heart-healthy monounsaturated fatty acids!


Steel-Cut Oats

Steel cut oatsOats are whole grain and high in fiber, which can be helpful in optimizing cholesterol markers, managing blood sugar levels, and improving digestion. Oats also contain some protein, which in addition to fiber can help you feel full until your next meal and may help you reduce snacking.


Pur Gum & Pur Mints

 

I always stock up on Pur Gum and Pur Mints when I am at Whole Foods. I love how they don’t contain aspartame (they are sweetened with Xylitol), are vegan, and contain no added sugar! They taste great and don’t taste fake like the other [similar brands]. Tangerine tango mints are my favorite!


365 Everyday Value Coconut Water

365 everyday value coconut water

I use sports drinks for hydration during long training runs. I’m not a huge fan of the pre-made sports drinks, so I make my own variety with coconut water as the base. I’ve found that the 365 brand of coconut water is quite affordable, tasty, and contains no additives. That’s why I pick up a liter every time I’m at Whole Foods.


Bob’s Red Mill Nutritional Yeast

bob’s red mill nutritional yeast

As a vegetarian, I’m always cognizant of eating enough foods that have vitamin B12 (since this vitamin is mostly found in meat products). Since nutritional yeast is rich in vitamin B12, has 8 grams of protein in a ¼-cup serving, and offers a cheese flavor, I use it in a ton of my dishes, like scrambled eggs and sprinkled onto roasted veggies or popcorn. I have a hard time finding it in my local supermarket, so I make sure I grab a bag of the Bob’s Red Mill nutritional yeast when I’m at Whole Foods.



Hot Foods Bar

hot foods barI shop their hot foods bar for quick takeout meals when I am traveling. I like that Whole Foods provides foods that are closer to what I would make at home as compared to typical fast food options.


Collard Greens

Collard greensWhere I live Whole Foods sells the freshest leafy greens, my favorite being collard greens. Collard greens are an incredibly nutritious food, packed with vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, and fiber. I love sautéing this in a little  oil and minced garlic!”


LesserEvil Popcorn

LesserEvil buddha popcorn

Popcorn is one of my favorite snacks, and I can only find LesserEvil Buddha Bowl Popcorn at Whole Foods! They have several different flavors, but I stick with the original Himalayan Pink Salt.


Wine

wine bottlesWine (in moderation) can bring joy and happiness, and any stress relief is good for our health, as stress has widely known negative physiological health effects. Wine also provides antioxidants and resveratrol, which has been associated with microbiome and cardiovascular health. I enjoy a glass of wine while shopping, but because that’s not always the case, I appreciate Whole Foods’ selection of wine based on region and grape. It makes for easy shopping and an unintimidating way to try new wines.

I did a post a couple of months ago how to drink and when to drink wine for weight loss you can Click Here to learn all the sweet deets.


Natural Calm by Natural Vitality Magnesium Citrate Powder

natural calm by natural vitality magnesium citrate powder

This is a highly absorbable form of magnesium that can be mixed with water and sipped throughout the day. The reason I shop this is because magnesium stimulates a particular hormone, calcitonin, which helps to preserve bone structure and draws calcium out of the blood and soft tissues back into the bones, lowering the likelihood of osteoporosis. Magnesium is also an anti-stress mineral. Serotonin, the feel-good brain chemical that is boosted artificially by some medications, depends on magnesium for its production and function. Magnesium also regulates melatonin production for better, more rejuvenating sleep. This enhances well-being and helps with day-to-day happiness levels. A best-selling magnesium that I have successfully used is Natural Calm by Natural Vitality, which is available at Whole Foods Markets.



Lily’s Dark Chocolate

lilly's dark chocolate

Lily’s Dark Chocolate is a newer product, and it is delicious chocolate for those seeking a lower sugar option (it is sweetened with Stevia). Whole Foods usually has an awesome selection! The chocolate chips are great for baking, and I love the dark chocolate coconut bar—a few squares makes for a delicious sweet treat after dinner!


Waterloo Sparkling Water

Waterloo lime

This Austin-based sparkling water company has so many delicious fruity flavors, and I love the crisp, clean flavor profile, compared to some other sparkling waters out there (because let’s face it, there’s a ton of options out there!). Whole Foods always has a great selection and is one of the few places that sells Waterloo right now!


So Delicious No Sugar Added Fudge Bars

so delicious no sugar added fudge bars

These creamy chocolaty fudge pops only have 60 calories and 2 grams of net carbs and are a delicious treat to keep on hand for those watching sugar, carb, or calorie intake! They are also vegan. Whole Foods has a great selection of So Delicious items.


Perfect Bars

perfect bar coconut peanut butter

Look for them in the refrigerated cases or in the mini fridges at the checkout endcaps. I like all of their flavors, but lately am really digging their Peanut Butter Coconut.


Kite Hill Unsweetened Plain Yogurt

Kite Hill dairy free almond yogurt

Kite Hill’s unsweetened plain almond milk yogurt is often only at Whole Foods. It’s great because it has only 5 ingredients [in addition to probiotics.


Bean-Based Pasta

Tolerant simply legumes pasta

Bean-based pasta, such as Tolerant brand, offer single-ingredient options like Black Bean, Red Lentil, and Green Lentil, which are exceptional minimally-processed options that will help to maintain our appetite and control blood sugar throughout the afternoon. Specifically, these plant-based pastas offer significantly more nutrition per bite as they are high in naturally-occurring fiber and protein. Highly processed options that contain processed fibers and protein isolates remain limited as to the research supporting their health benefits and usually come packed in foods high in added sugars and sodium. Despite other grocers having other bean-based pasta brands, I choose Whole Foods as a steady source for Tolerant, which to me is the highest quality of these pastas.


Avocado Oil

Primal Kitchen Greek avocado oil

Avocado oils and avocado-based dressings and marinades offer incredible benefits, mainly in the lines of healthy fats to support heart health. Avocado oil specifically has a high smoke point, making it ideal for high-heat cooking methods like baking and stir-frying. Brands include Primal Kitchen and Chosen Foods.


Beanitos

beanitos original chips

Beanitos bean-based chips offer a great snacking alternative. Similar to the pastas mentioned above, these chips are high in naturally-occurring fiber and protein.


Spiralized Zucchini Pasta

Spiralized zucchini noodles carrots zoodlesI find this by the vegetables in the refrigerated section, and I like it because it’s fresh and ready to make.


Enjoy Life Foods Baking Chocolate

enjoy life baking chocolate

Enjoy Life is the #1 allergy-friendly baking chocolate in America. It’s a rich, smooth, and premium chocolate that is dairy-free, nut-free, and soy-free, making it perfect for cookies, truffles, fudge, and more.


ProBar Live Bars

pro bar live bar

Exclusively available at Whole Foods (in the refrigerator section), Live Bars come in four delicious varieties, including Coconut Cashew, Almond Butter, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip, and Peanut Butter. These bars feature clean organic ingredients and are packed with real nuts, seeds, and dates for natural sweetness. With 10 grams of plant-based protein and one billion CFUs (colony forming units) of probiotics with zero added sugar, these bars are sure to keep you full and focused.


Wedderspoon Manuka Honey

wedderspoon raw manuka honey

Unpasteurized and raw, Wedderspoon’s Kfactor-16 is a shopping cart must-have! This superfood is sourced from New Zealand and contains beneficial antibacterial properties, making it the perfect addition to smoothies, home remedies, coffee sweetener, and more.


Chia Seeds

Chia is underrated. This little seed packs a punch nutrition-wise and is probably one of the easiest ways to add fiber to your life without resorting to some powdery mix-in. Add chia to drinks, smoothies, or even use as an egg substitute when baking.

 


Ancient Nutrition Multi Collagen Protein

multi collagen protein powder

Collagen is the most abundant type of protein in the body and is found in the bones, muscles, hair, skin, and nails. This key protein can impact nearly every aspect of health, and some promising research even suggests that collagen and its components support skin health, joint health, and gut health. The Multi Collagen Protein Powder is great because it’s made from five different types of collagen and has no fillers and additives. It’s also made using hydrolyzed collagen, which means that it’s typically more easily digested and absorbed by the body.


Almond Butter

Almond ButterWhole Foods has every type of nut butter you could ever want: raw, roasted, salted, unsalted, and unsweetened. I love adding almond butter to my soups and stews to make it extra creamy, for a nutty flavor, and it adds nutrients like plant protein, dietary fiber, vitamin E, and calcium.


Bob’s Red Mill Paleo Baking Flour

bob's red mill paleo baking flour

I love baking with a mix of almond flour and coconut flour, and this baking mix makes that easier. It also includes arrowroot and tapioca, so my muffins and pancakes turn out extra fluffy. Whole Foods has a way more extensive baking section, whether you’re looking for Paleo options or gluten-free or low-carb baking ingredients.


Maple Syrup

maple syrupScientists have identified more than 67 different beneficial plant compounds, or polyphenols, nine of which are unique to pure maple syrup. One of these polyphenols, named Quebecol, naturally forms when the sap is boiled to produce maple syrup. I always look for 100% pure maple syrup. Maple syrup is a natural sweetener that is derived directly from the maple tree’s sap that, when consumed in moderation, can be part of a healthy diet. It contains vitamins and minerals such as copper, manganese, and riboflavin—at approximately 110 calories per serving (2 tablespoons).


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post or the items I mentioned in today’s post please feel free in reaching out and I will be more than happy to answer any question, comments or concerns you may have. If you have general questions you can always comment on today’s post or any past post that you may have a question too. If commenting isn’t your thing you can always find my email in the “Thank You” section and If you email isn’t your speed and social media is 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 please feel free to email me or contact me through my social media link and I will be more than happy to help you achieve the best version of you.


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

Pinterest: Amanda Explains It

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

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Reasons Why You Should Drink Smoothies

Confession: I used to hate smoothies (still do sometimes). Too much prep (sometimes your girl can be lazy). Too much to clean up (Who else hates cleaning the kitchen after smoothie making?) And I like to chew my food, not sip it. But then my sister bought a Vitamix when my old blender bit the dust, and it changed everything. I wanted to get my money’s worth.

It was an interesting experiment. For one, the smoothies replaced those sugary cereals I was eating. No, they weren’t as sweet as Honey Bunches of Oats, but they were rich and filling. I wasn’t hungry at 10:30 in the morning like most people I honestly don’t wake up until afternoon time I’m a night owl at it’s finest where my night owls at? The smoothie recipes were fun to make.

I started making protein shakes with chocolate-flavored pea protein powder for an afternoon snack.  It’s not a Yoo-hoo by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s still delicious and gives you the chocolate taste you crave. You get used to the taste of plant-based protein and quickly learn how to sweeten it up a bit with a frozen banana or vanilla almond milk. With a protein smoothie in the afternoon, I didn’t need a Philly-style pretzel from Wawa or a Cliff Bar to chase the hunger away.

And if you want to lose pounds, drinking smoothies as meal replacements can be a convenient and delicious way to significantly slash processed carbohydrates and the calories that come with them. A study in Current Nutrition & Food Science found that people who replaced breakfast and dinner with a high-protein smoothie lost over 18 pounds in 12 weeks.

Made right, smoothies are full of water, fiber, and protein, all of which promote “satiety,” or feeling full, and can help us avoid overeating and cut calories, according to Penn State researcher Barbara Rolls, PhD, author of The Volumetrics Weight-Control Program.

But smoothies boast a tumbler full of other health benefits beyond weight loss, depending on the ingredients you toss in the blender before the blades start spinning. Try the smoothie recipes below, and see 10 surprising reasons to drink smoothies. Get ready to whip up a delicious shake that’ll do your body good.

Boost Metabolism

Woman with water bottleStudies have shown that adding spicy ingredients like ginger and cayenne pepper to a shake can rev up your calorie-burning metabolism. In one study at Purdue University, people who consumed about a half a teaspoon of cayenne pepper in their food burned about 10 more calories in the hours afterward, compared to people who ate the same meal but without the spice. Researchers call capsaicin, the compound in peppers that makes them hot, a thermogenic chemical that not only heats the body but decreases hunger signals in the brain.

Recipe: Tropical Spice Smoothie
½ cup coconut water
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
½ ripe avocado
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne
2” knob of fresh ginger
1 cup frozen mango.

Makes 2 servings.


Ease Arthritis Pain

Woman with arthritis

Aching from osteoarthritis-related knee pain? Muscles sore after a strength-training workout? Try a smoothie made with tart cherry juice, which has been shown to reduce inflammation and joint pain.

Recipe: Almond Cherry Bomb Smoothie
½ cup frozen bing cherries
½ cup tart cherry juice
1 cup Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons almond butter

Makes 2 servings.


Reduce Alzheimer’s Risk

woman working during daySeveral studies have suggested a possible link between eating blueberries and improved memory and a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Scientists believe the anthocyanin antioxidants in blueberries may protect neurons, improve brain cell communication, and enhance blood circulation to the brain. This smoothie recipe contains other ingredients (spinach and turmeric) known to support cognitive function, making it a smart choice for boosting brainpower.

Recipe: The Einstein Smoothie
1 cup frozen blueberries
1 cup water
½ cup spinach
½ cup Greek yogurt, plain
1 teaspoon matcha powder
½ teaspoon turmeric
¼ cup coconut milk
ice as needed

Makes 2 servings.


Rebuild Your Gut After Taking Antibiotics

Flat absAntibiotics create a lot of collateral damage at the same time they’re eradicating the bacterium they are prescribed to kill. They destroy much of our helpful gut microbiota, which in turn causes mild diarrhea. But sometimes the widespread reduction in microbiota by antibiotics allows a more harmful bug–Clostridium difficile—to take over. C-diff can cause severe diarrhea and even a life-threatening inflammation of the colon. It’s especially dangerous in the elderly. There’s clinical evidence that repopulating the gut with “good bugs” by taking probiotics could help prevent C-diff in people taking antibiotics. Kefir, used in the good-gut-bug-building smoothie below, is one of the best probiotics (yogurt is another) and perfect for smoothie blends.

Recipe: Gut Punch Smoothie
½ cup plain full-fat kefir
1 cup frozen raspberries, peaches, strawberries
½ tablespoon flaxseeds

Makes 1 serving.


Crush Cravings

Pastry shop

Apple cider vinegar and cinnamon have been shown to stabilize blood sugar and keep cravings for carbs at bay.

Recipe: Cinnamon ‘n’ Cider Smoothie
1/3 cup coconut water
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup plain Greek yogurt
½ teaspoon cinnamon
½ apple, chopped
four ice cubes

Makes 2 servings.


Lower Blood Pressure

Woman checking her blood pressureEating foods rich in potassium is a natural way to lower blood pressure because the mineral tempers the effects of sodium on the body and also eases tension on blood vessel walls. Among the best high-potassium ingredients for smoothies are bananas. One study found that eating two bananas a day can drop blood pressure by 10 percent. But before you go ape with bananas, check with your doctor. Potassium can be harmful to people with kidney problems, and it may interact with certain medications. Then try this blood pressure-lowering smoothie, which also contains vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that neutralizes free radicals and relaxes the walls of your blood vessels.

Recipe: Berries and Banana Smoothie
½ cup almond milk

½ cup strawberries, sliced

½ medium frozen banana

1 kiwi, peeled and chopped

1 teaspoon ground flaxseeds

Makes 2 servings.


Beat Diabetes

DiabetesIf you are worried about prediabetes, this is an ideal breakfast smoothie to replace a bowl of sugary cereal or sweetened yogurt. It tastes like an apple pie, but it keeps blood sugar levels stable with cinnamon, eight grams of fiber, and muscle-building protein. What’s more, it contains EGCG, a catechin from matcha powder that stimulates cells to release fat.

Recipe: Apple Cobbler Smoothie
1 apple, cored and chopped

1 cup kale, deveined

1 cup unsweetened almond milk

1 teaspoon matcha powder

1 scoop plain plant-based protein powder

cinnamon and nutmeg to taste

Makes 1 serving.


Look Younger

Woman looking in mirrorThis smoothie is a dermatologists’ favorite because it’s loaded with beta-carotene, which the body converts to vitamin A. This vitamin protects the skin from UV ray damage, potentially keeping skin supple and youthful-looking. The beta-carotene in The Young Bunny smoothie comes from two ingredients, carrots and apricot. We’ve added honey and cinnamon, which have also been shown to help with skin repair.

Recipe: The Young Bunny Smoothie
½ cup plain full-fat Greek yogurt
½ cup grated carrot
1 dried apricot half, diced
1 fresh apricot, pitted and chopped
1 teaspoon local honey
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Makes 2 servings.


Stay Awake


A smoothie made with chilled coffee or cold-brew coffee, banana, and protein powder will not only give you an energy boost at 10 a.m., but it’ll also keep your belly satisfied until lunchtime.

Recipe: The Cold Snap Smoothie
½ cup coffee, cooled or cold brew coffee
½ cup 2% milk
2 Tbsp natural peanut butter
1 medium frozen banana
1 scoop whey protein powder
4 ice cubes

Makes 2 servings.


Go to Sleep

Sleeping woman

Cherries and tart cherry juice are concentrated sources of melatonin, a popular natural sleep aid. Try this simple concoction as a late evening snack, and you’ll drift off easily.

Recipe: The Snoozie Smoothie
¾ cup tart cherry juice
1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
4 ice cubes

Makes 2 servings.


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions, comments or concerns please feel free in reaching out and I will be more than happy to answer any questions you may have. If you have general questions 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.

If you or someone you know is looking for one on one coaching please feel free in reaching out you can always comment on this post or you can email me if neither is your thing you can always reach me on all of my social media which is linked down 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 ❤️️

………………………………………………………………

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Pinterest: Amanda Explains It

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

Healthy And Affordable Recipes

When it comes to meal prep, “healthy” and “affordable” should be synonymous. And most of the time, the two go hand-in-hand, but most people just aren’t sure how to eat healthy on a budget and in the end overspend sometimes by hundreds of dollars and half of the food doesn’t get eaten and I know this because I use to be one of those people. That’s why we’ve put together this go-to list of breakfast, lunch, and dinner options that prove you can eat healthy on a budget. All meals are jam-packed with good-for-you ingredients without skimping out on flavor.

I have left some helpful links throughout today’s post that I think will be useful.


Veggie Scramble With Gouda

Scrambled eggsFor a protein-packed breakfast that’s as delicious as it is filled with nutrients, whip up a cheesy veggie scramble you can even swap out real eggs for tofu or vegan eggs. I like to use a blend of fiber-rich frozen broccoli and spinach as well as a sprinkle of shredded Gouda cheese, which adds creaminess. Start by steaming the veggies in the microwave while scrambling two whole eggs and one egg white in a bowl. Then, pour the eggs into a heated and oiled pan. When the scramble is halfway done, fold in the veggies and sprinkle in the cheese. Cook until the Gouda is fully melted and the eggs are firm.

Follow Your Heart Vegan Egg: Vegan Egg


High-Protein Fruit Parfait

Yogurt parfait

Layer creamy skyr, raspberries, blueberries, and a high-fiber granola like Kind’s Cinnamon Oat Clusters with Flax Seeds in a tall glass. You’ll get a double dose of fiber from the sweet berries and the oat clusters, in addition to brain-boosting omega-3s from the flax seeds in the granola. What’s more, the thick skyr serves up about 15 grams of muscle-building protein that will help keep you full past lunchtime.


Garlic Herb Quinoa and Vegan Kielbasa Bowl

Quinoa and sausage

One serving of Lundberg Farms’ Garlic Herb Quinoa boasts 6 grams of fiber and 8 grams of complete plant protein coming from the amino-acid-rich quinoa. Plus, it cooks in just 18 minutes! Pair it with Tofurky’s vegan Kielbasa, which lends the dish a nice savoriness and extra protein punch. Cook the quinoa according to the package’s instructions while you toss the Kielbasa on the barbecue or pop it in the broiler until it’s browned.


Salmon Fillet With Roasted Tomatoes

One pan salmon

Need to add some heart-healthy omega-3s to your diet, but don’t know where to start? Place a six-ounce salmon fillet on a sheet pan before coating with a teaspoon of olive oil and a teaspoon of Dijon mustard. Sprinkle fresh rosemary, salt, and cracked black pepper. Then, toss tomato slices with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and throw them onto the sheet pan. Bake at 350 degrees until the salmon is thoroughly cooked through and the tomatoes browned.


Black Bean and Tomato Salad With Grilled Chicken

Salad chicken tortilla chips tomatoesWith a nutritious mix of lean chicken, fiber-rich black beans, red bell peppers, and anti-inflammatory tomatoes, this salad will keep you slim and satiated. For the chicken, coat a skinless breast with fresh herbs and olive oil before tossing on the grill. Then, combine chopped lettuce, fresh tomatoes, and a quarter cup of canned, drained black beans before tossing with a healthy dressing. Once the chicken is done, slice it and top over the salad. Yum!


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? You can turn any of these into a vegan or vegetarian recipe. 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.

If you are looking for one on one coaching or know someone who is you can find my email in the “Thank You”  section and if you email isn’t your thing 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 ❤️️

………………………………………………………………

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Pinterest: Amanda Explains It

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

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 ❤️️

………………………………………………………………

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

 

 

Reasons To Go Vegan

Today I will be talking about some reasons why you should think about going vegan. I’m not telling you that you need to go vegan today’s post is for anyone that has been thinking about going vegan or even vegetarian. If you aren’t interested in some simple reasons to go vegan and you missed yesterday’s post you can Click Here  to learn all about cheat days or meals and which may be best for you. And if you aren’t into cheat days then here is a post I did about how to quit junk food cold turkey you can Click Here

Throughout today’s post, I left helpful links to some information about going vegan, livestock, and what happens to your body when you stop eating animal products and go vegan. I also left links to some other posts throughout today’s post about how to reverse diabetes and some other ones. Don’t forget to check out all the links for the cool info.

You’ll see the word “diet” will be crossed out. If you are new to my blog the reason that I cross out the word “diet” is that I don’t like to use that word when I am talking about long-term health. The word “diet” means short-term and I when I am talking about different types of  “diets” I always talk about the long-term NEVER short-term.  

Veganism when before veganism was mainstream it used to be viewed as a hippie thing, but now the lifestyle is totally mainstream. Whether people made the switch for their health or for the animals, there’s been a 600 percent increase in those who identify as a vegan since 2014. Not only has this shift led to having vegan options in just about every restaurant you go to, but with the growing lifestyle has also come a whole assortment of new products that are making it even easier to go plant-based.

From the Beyond Burger that’s found right in the meat section of grocery stores to former dairy companies switching to producing plant-based alternatives, it’s clear a revolution is happening. So why not be part of it? There’s no better time than now to rid animal products from your life,  here are some reasons that might just convince you to make the move today or the very least try to do meatless Monday’s.


 It Keeps Your Heart Healthy

Young woman clutching chest

One of the best ways to keep your heart healthy just so happens to be cutting all the animal products out of your life. “Vegan “diets” tend to lower heart disease risk by helping to lower LDL, HDL, and non-LDL cholesterol A vegan “diet” also tends to reduce blood sugar levels from elevated to more normal, which also impacts on cardiovascular health.” In fact, a 2017 study from the American Heart Association found those who ate a mostly plant-based diet had a 42 percent decreased the risk of developing heart failure compared to those who didn’t.


It’ll Help You Be More Productive

Man in glasses working on laptopIf you feel like your overall productivity—whether it’s at the office or in life in general—could use a boost, going vegan might be the way to do it. In a four-month-long study from the American Journal of Health Promotion, researchers found that eating a vegan “diet” not only helped workers shed some pounds, but it also increased their productivity, allowing them to get more done and excel at their jobs.


It Can Help You Stay Youthful

Woman touching face

Unfortunately, there’s still no Fountain of Youth to you can jet off to and come back with a sunkissed glow. One way to help you age gracefully, though, is eating a vegan “diet” If you’re after an anti-aging effect, a vegan “diet” is your best bet. There tend to be more antioxidants present in vegan food, as well as more minerals, vitamins, and phytonutrients, all of which support radiant skin, hair, and eyes.


You’ll Lower Your Risk of Breast Cancer

Woman talking to doctorAccording to BreastCancer.org, one in eight women will develop it during their lifetime—and that means there will be an estimated 330,000 new cases in the U.S. alone this year. One thing that can help lower the risk is going vegan: A 2017 study published in BMC Public Health found cutting out meat could help protect you against breast cancer. Eating meat, on the other hand, was associated with a higher risk.



It Can Help Keep Your Body in Check

Woman on scale celebrating her weight lossInstead of going on a crazy diet, simply focusing on plants will do your body good, inside and out. “Plants are great for maintaining a healthy weight and body mass index.  Obviously, a lot of vegan junk food now exists—which is best eaten sparingly—but when you emphasize eating veggies, fruits, healthy fats, beans, legumes, and other whole food ingredients, you’ll see great results.  And a 2016 study backs that up, finding non-meat-eaters tended to weigh less than meat-eaters.


It Can Help You Live Longer

Older womanWhen you go vegan, you’re not just saving animals’ lives—you’re lengthening your own, too. A 2018 study published in The Lancet found those who consumed animal-based diets had a shorter life expectancy than those who ate plant-based sources of protein and fat. In fact, there was nearly a 20 percent decrease in the risk of death.


It Can Improve Your Arthritis

Woman with arthritisPeople with osteoarthritis—a type of arthritis—deal with joint pain everywhere from their hands and neck to their back and knees. In a 2015 study published in the journal Arthritis, those who ate whole foods, plant-based “diet” experienced a significant reduction in pain compared to those on a typical meat-eating “diet”. And get this: It only took two weeks to start feeling results. On top of that, another study found a vegan “diet” could also help you decrease your risk of rheumatoid arthritis—a chronic inflammatory disorder that affects the joints—too.


It Can Up Your Disease-Fighting Antioxidant Status

Vegetables

When you have a good antioxidant status, your body is better able to fight off disease, whether that’s cancer or heart disease. And how do you get all those antioxidants? Going vegan. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found eating a vegan “diet” provided significantly more antioxidants than a typical meat-eating “diet”, which could lead to better health down the line.


It Will Keep Your Bones Strong

Xray bonesEver since you’re little, you’re told to drink milk to have strong bones. Unfortunately, calcium from animal products is proving to do the opposite, despite what all those “got milk?” ads claim. A study published in Topics in Integrative Health Care found fruit and vegetables is all you need for healthy bones—and osteoporosis, the condition that weakens bones and makes them brittle, is actually more prevalent in the developed countries where dairy products are abundant and well utilized by the population. If you want quality calcium that will do your body good, you can get just as much with your greens. In fact, 100 grams of kale contains more calcium than 100 grams of milk. Crazy, huh?


You’ll See an Increase in Your Energy Levels

RunningIf you’re feeling tired and lethargic all the time, switching your “diet” could help you feel back to normal again. If you suffer from low energy or energy fluctuations, a plant-based diet may improve this issue.  Meat, dairy, and eggs tend to require more energy to digest than plant-based products, meaning your body has less energy to fuel your body, brain, and your day.


It Could Help End World Hunger

Grass-fed cowsIf you want to be part of a real change, going vegan is one easy way to do it. According to a study published in Environmental Research Letters, researchers found the cows, pigs, chickens, and other animals raised for food use up a lot of crops that could be used to feed humans instead. If those crops were grown strictly to feed humans instead of to fatten up livestock for meat, it could feed four billion more people.


You’ll Save a Lot of Water

SinkNo, like a lot. Sure, taking shorter showers is one thing. But if you really want to play your part, go vegan. Creating a single pound of beef you see on store shelves takes about 1,800 gallons alone—and that’s just a measly pound of one of the many animals eaten. As crazy as it might seem, agriculture in the U.S. uses up 80 percent of all water. So just imagine how much could be saved if people were no longer eating meat.


You’ll Save Animals

chickens roaming aroundMost people don’t realize how much harm goes into producing meat. By going vegan, you could save thousands of animals over the years—and stop contributing to all the pain and suffering they go through to get onto people’s plates. The vast majority of chickens, cows, pigs, and turkeys spend their lives on massive factory farms where they’re kept in crowded, filthy sheds or cages. They’re denied everything natural to them.

Pigs never get to take a breath of fresh air or nurture their young, cows are in such terrible shape that they frequently collapse during their ride to the slaughterhouse where they’re prodded or dragged off the trucks, often resulting in their bones breaking as they hit the ground. Chickens and turkeys are crammed into crowded sheds with tens of thousands of other birds where disease, being smothered or having heart attacks are all common. These are all intelligent, sensitive animals that feel pain, just like our dogs and cats.



You Can Help Stop Global Warming

Climate changeSeeing pictures of starving polar bears due to their homes melting away because of global warming is devastating. Change isn’t just going to come from riding your bike to work instead of driving, though: transportation is only responsible for a small fraction of the problem. According to reports, animal agriculture is behind 18 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions—and to put that into perspective, that’s more than the combined exhaust from every mode of transportation. If you really want to see change, going vegan is the way to do it.


You’ll Have Better Gut Health

Man holding stomachWhen your gut is healthy, you’ll feel better both mentally and physically: Those tiny bacteria play a role in everything from your digestion to your immune system and mood. According to a 2014 review published in the journal Nutrients, when compared to meat-eating and even vegetarian “diets”, vegans’ gut profiles are top-notch with less disease-causing organisms and more protective species of bacteria, as well as lower levels of inflammation.



You Can Stop Diabetes in Its Tracks

Woman testing insulin levelsWhether you’re trying to prevent diabetes or help reduce diabetic symptoms, going vegan can make a big difference. Studies have shown a vegan diet can support the reduction of diabetes medications, lower hemoglobin A1C levels, and improve blood sugar numbers. There are countless anecdotes of those using a plant-based “diet” to address diabetes as well.

I did a post on how to reverse diabetes naturally in that post i mentioned going vegan or vegetarian. If you or someone you know has diabetes and is looking for a natural way to reverse diabetes you can Click Here

There Are Awesome (and Delicious!) Food Options

Impossible BurgerYears ago, it was harder to find plant-based alternatives to your favorite foods prepped and ready-to-go at the grocery store. Now, vegans have plenty of options. There are realistic melty cheeses, burgers that bleed, creamy ice creams, non-dairy milk made from nuts, fluffy “egg” products—you name it. Basically, whatever you loved before going vegan, you can find a way to make it without causing any harm to animals.


It’ll Help Get Rid of Acne

SkinGetting rid of acne can be really hard. If you’ve tried every product on store shelves to no avail, you might want to try going vegan. Not only will all those extra vitamins and nutrients make your skin glow, but ditching milk could do wonders for those zits. Multiple studies have shown drinking milk from cows—no matter the type—was positively associated with acne, so eliminating it from your diet could help things clear up for good.



It’s Never Been Easier

girl eating saladOftentimes, people think going vegan is hard. That’s not the case, though—especially with all the resources available. It’s never been easier to be vegan, and the food has never been more delicious. Plus, there are so many resources for people who want to transition. Even if you’re traveling, there are apps like Happy Cow that will let you see all the options available around you.


You’ll Sleep Better

Sleeping womanThe key to a good night’s sleep probably isn’t from counting sheep—it’s from helping them (and other animals!) by going vegan. One older study found those who took on veganism improved their quality of sleep, so making the switch could allow you to get more out of that time spent resting—and take on your days with all that extra energy because of it.


You’ll Be Less Stressed

Woman stressedFeeling stressed isn’t fun for anyone. But—you guessed it!—going vegan could help lower your levels. In a survey of 620 participants, all the fruit and veggies vegan participants ate gave them lower stress and anxiety levels than non-vegans. And all those positive vibes helped female participants eat lower intakes of sweets, too.


It Can Lower Your Risk of Colon Cancer

Doctor and patientWant to keep your colon in good shape? Going vegan is a great way to do it. It turns out if you devour meat on the regular, you’re really pushing your luck: Research shows those who eat processed or red meat are a whopping 50 percent more likely to have colon cancer than non-meat-eaters. Instead, replace that animal protein with healthier forms of plant protein, like tofu, tempeh, chickpeas, and seitan.


It Could Help Treat Asthma

Woman taking deep breathAnyone who’s sick of carrying around an inhaler 24/7 could greatly benefit from going vegan. After a group of study participants with serious asthma issues (who had been taking medication for around 12 years!) ate a vegan “diet” for a year, nearly all of them barely had any symptoms anymore and were able to either get rid of or reduce their meds.


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? I mentioned this at the beginning of the post that this post is for anyone or anyone they know that has been looking for some awesome reasons to go vegan. If you have no desire to go vegan that is fine I left a few links at the beginning of the post and throughout today’s post that might interest you. If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please don’t hesitate in reaching out and I will be more than happy to help answer any questions you may have. 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 ❤️️

………………………………………………………………

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

 

Should You Have Cheat Meals or Cheat Days?

As the obesity epidemic rises, the search for effective weight loss strategies becomes increasingly fervent. While choosing the right regimen can be tough, often the biggest weight loss challenge is making and sticking to new habits that support your health or weight loss goals without missing out on the foods you love. The incorporation of cheat meals or cheat days into a “diet” plan has been popular among fitness enthusiasts for some time, but it’s now making its way into mainstream “diet” culture by way of social media. Today I discuss cheat days and meals, their effectiveness and whether to incorporate them into your health and fitness journey.


What Are Cheat Days?

Cheating within a “diet” plan involves giving yourself calculated, planned permission to temporarily break strict “diet” rules.

The theory behind this reward-based “diet” strategy is that by allowing yourself brief periods of indulgence, you’ll be more likely to stick to your prescribed “diet” the majority of the time.

When using the cheat strategy, people will typically employ either a cheat meal or cheat day approach. As the names imply, a cheat meal is a single meal that veers from your planned “diet” pattern, while a cheat day allows for free food choices for an entire day.

Cheat “diet” methods are highly variable. How they’re implemented may look very different for different people, depending on an individual’s “diet” preferences and goals.

The foods you eat as cheat meals will also vary from person to person due to individual tastes, but they often consist of high-calorie foods that wouldn’t otherwise be permitted on a typical “diet” plan.

There is no specific guideline for when or how frequently your cheat meal or day should occur. Often people will include one cheat per week, but this can change depending on what the person’s health or weight loss goals are.

Some people do what is called 3-1-2-1 I did a post all about it and how it can help someone who can’t just have one cheat day per week. If you are interested in reading all about the 3-1-2-1 for weight loss and cheat days you can Click Here

In this way, the cheat strategy is adaptable and can be implemented alongside many different “diet” patterns.

Side Note: that the cheat meal approach is not appropriate for all “diet” styles. Some “diets”, such as the ketogenic “diet”, require very strict adherence with no room for cheating. Therefore, the cheat strategy is best utilized in “diets” that allow for some flexibility.

Cheat meals are scheduled meals that include indulgent foods that wouldn’t ordinarily be permitted on your “diet”. A cheat day is when you allow yourself to consume any foods you want over an entire day.

Does Cheating Really Work?

Weight management and body composition changes are complex processes. Not everyone will respond the same way to the same strategies — the best “diet” plan is the one you can stick to.

It’s well known that if you eat fewer calories than you burn, weight loss is likely to occur. In this way, the reward-based cheat meal or cheat day strategy may be effective if you’re able to execute a well-planned “diet” and maintain overall reduced calorie intake.

Weight Loss and Metabolic Changes

It’s frequently claimed that using cheat meals will lead to measurable changes in body composition and improved metabolic function due to fluctuations in the hunger hormone leptin.

Leptin is a hormone responsible for suppressing feelings of hunger. Some research indicates that when someone experiences significant weight loss, leptin levels may decrease. However, this result is inconsistent with other studies.

A common weight management theory is that with lower levels of circulating leptin, you’re more likely to overeat because you don’t have enough of the hormone sending you signals that you’re satisfied and full. This may lead to rebound weight gain.

Proponents of the cheat meal strategy for weight loss further theorize that intermittent periods of higher-calorie foods will trick your hormone cycle into producing more leptin temporarily and prevent the desire for rebound overeating.

Unfortunately, there is little rigorous scientific research to support this theory.

It’s still unclear how fluctuations in leptin levels associated with weight changes affect someone’s ability to control their eating behaviors and maintain weight loss. As a result, more research is needed.

At this stage, it’s more likely that weight loss occurs for some people with the cheat method because of a reduction in overall calorie intake that is achieved by sticking to a well-planned diet most of the time and limiting high-calorie junk foods.

Using Planned Indulgence as a Motivator

Another component of the cheating diet strategy is the theory that by occasionally allowing yourself to indulge in foods not permitted on your diet, you’ll then have the motivation to stick to your planned diet most of the time.

This is where the cheat meal strategy is tied to the psychology of weight loss.

Some people can effectively resist temptation knowing that their cheat day is coming up, but not everyone can regulate their own eating behaviors in the same way. Thus, the same results cannot be guaranteed for every person.

Furthermore, if you’re unable to maintain some degree of self-control within your cheat meals or days, you run the risk of undoing your prior weight loss efforts if you end up eating more calories than you should.

Even cheat meals or days should be appropriately planned. They shouldn’t be framed as a free ticket to excessive overeating.

To reiterate an important point: the most effective weight loss strategy is the one that you can stick to.

For some people, cheat days or meals may be a great way to maintain overall healthier dietary habits — for others, a different approach may be more appropriate.

The causes of obesity and the best methods for losing weight can be complex and will look different for everyone. Cheat meals can be effective for some to reduce overall caloric intake, as long as you’re careful not to overdo it on cheat days.



May Encourage Unhealthy Behaviors

The trend of incorporating cheat meals into your diet plan has become increasingly popular in the Western “diet” and fitness culture, especially across social media platforms.

It’s common to see photos of highly indulgent foods alongside people with fit, muscular physiques giving the impression that the cheat meal dieting strategy is the key to acquiring their culturally praised physical appearance.

While the cheat meal approach may work for some people, it could also have some potentially detrimental effects.

Cheat or Treat?

Successful and sustained weight loss is about more than eating fewer calories than you burn in a day. Your attitude toward food can also significantly impact your ability to resist temptation and regulate eating behaviors.

The word “cheat” has a culturally negative connotation and is associated with feelings of guilt. Using that term to describe a food or meal could impair your ability to maintain self-control even within the cheat meal framework.

One three-month study noticed that people who associated chocolate cake with celebration had more success with their weight loss goals than those who linked this food to feelings of guilt.

Because the cheat meal or day strategy focuses on a reward-based system, it may be ineffective for those who have a difficult time self-regulating emotional eating. Some people may even experience feelings of hopelessness and guilt.

Reframing a cheat meal with a more positive message, such as a treat meal, could help to better support self-regulation and healthy eating behaviors with this kind of diet pattern.

Binge Eating

A major concern with the cheat meal or day strategy is the potential for it to encourage a binge-style eating behavior.

Causes of obesity can widely vary — it isn’t always as simple as calories in and calories out.

The cheat meal method could exacerbate eating-related issues for people dealing with food addiction tendencies, disordered eating or an inability to self-regulate eating habits.

Research shows that people who use food as a coping mechanism may be more susceptible to binge eating.

Understanding your motives for eating desired cheat foods ensures that you’re choosing the healthiest approach to weight loss for your individual needs.

Even a cheat meal or day should be approached healthfully and with a plan. Cheating should not mean you ignore hunger and satiety cues under the assumption that you can eat as much as you want of any food on your cheat day.

Focus on Physical Appearance

The social media culture associated with cheat meal or cheat day diet patterns places a strong emphasis on physical appearance.

Because the cheat meal strategy is very popular among athletes and fitness enthusiasts on social media, an unrealistic portrayal of body image can be propagated, which may be harmful to vulnerable populations.

Excessive focus on the superficial aspects of weight loss could be mentally damaging, as it can enhance feelings of anxiety and encourage disordered eating tendencies, especially among younger women.

As with any weight loss or diet plan, it’s important that the cheat meal strategy is approached with a healthy mindset alongside realistic goals and expectations that will support both mental and physical health.

The cheat meal or day strategy could trigger unhealthy eating behaviors, especially in those who struggle with emotional eating, food addiction or eating disorders.

Other Strategies to Consider

Whether or not implementing a cheat meal diet strategy is the right choice depends on the individual. Remember that the best, most effective diet plan is one that you can stick to over time.

Incorporating cheat meals into your “diet” may be an effective method to support your health goals, but it shouldn’t stand alone. There are other strategies you may want to consider in conjunction with cheat meals to better support your unique personal needs long-term.

Being Mindful

One thing that can determine the success of your cheat dieting strategy is being mindful of what you’re eating — even when you’re having a cheat day.

Mindful, or intuitive, eating is paying attention to your body’s hunger cues and eating when you’re hungry but stopping when you’re full or satisfied. It also involves slowing down while eating so that you can enjoy and savor your dining experience.

Early research indicates that mindful and intuitive eating approaches may help to reduce tendencies of emotional and binge eating. They may also reduce weight gain, but further research is needed.

Combining these types of eating approaches with your “diet” may support your ability to stick to your “diet” plan more easily and successfully. Furthermore, it may help prevent you from going overboard during more indulgent cheat meals.

Focus on One Cheat Treat

Another strategy that may benefit your “diet” efforts is to focus on just one or two cheat foods, instead of trying to fit them all in at once.

For example, if you’re planning a cheat meal, instead of eating the cheeseburger, sugary cocktail and dessert, pick only one or two of these indulgent options.

By focusing your attention on just one treat, you’ll be less likely to tip the scales in an unhealthy direction by overconsuming during your cheat period.

Additionally, you can continue eating healthy and avoiding foods you know you have difficulty controlling yourself around while still bending your “diet” rules.

This may look like a day of not tracking calories or macronutrients or enjoying a meal out without worrying about what you choose from the menu.

These strategies may be most useful for those who have a hard time with self-control during eating scenarios.

Plan for Success

The key to success with any major lifestyle change is being prepared. If you have a solid plan in place, you’re less likely to give in to temptation because your plan is set up to support you.

With cheat days or meals, it can be difficult for some people to know when to put on the brakes. This lack of self-control could end up making your diet goals less successful in the long run.

Implementing a plan for cheat days — just as you do on regular “dieting days” — is a good way to stay on track. This means that even though you’re allowing yourself to consume foods you normally wouldn’t, you can still maintain control over the situation.

For example, planning when and where your cheat meals will occur is a good first step. If you know you’ve got a birthday party or other social event coming up at the end of the week, it may be wise to plan your cheat meal or day around this event.

From there, you can also plan to maintain portion control, even with more indulgent foods. For example, plan to have one or two slices of pizza instead of sitting down with the whole pie.

Another option worth exploring is framing the cheat day as a time to continue with a balanced, healthy meal approach without tracking calories and macronutrients. This gives you a mental break from tracking without increasing temptation from certain foods.


Make Your Everyday Diet Enjoyable

A contributing factor to why diets are difficult to maintain is because you don’t like the food you’re eating. Portion control and planned diet regimens can be difficult to follow on their own, and it can add fuel to the fire if you’re filling it with foods you don’t enjoy.

Just because a food is deemed healthy doesn’t mean you’re required to eat it. Not to mention, eating foods you hate isn’t a requirement for reaching your health and weight loss goals.

Incorporating foods that you enjoy even when you’re not having a cheat day can be a great tool for making your “diet” feel like less of a chore. It can also help you maintain more self-control during both “diet” and cheat days.

At the end of the day, working toward a healthier “diet” or lifestyle should be about making sustainable changes that meet your unique needs and tastes — there is no one-size-fits-all approach.

If you’re unable to make this work on your own, consider consulting with a dietitian or other qualified health professional, who can help you build an effective and enjoyable diet plan to reach your health goals.

Incorporating other dieting strategies into cheat meals or days can help support your ability to stick to your goals. Having a plan for cheat days, incorporating mindful eating practices and including foods that you enjoy on diet days are some examples.

 


Final Thoughts

Cheat days or meals, which allow room to indulge, can effectively motivate some people to stick to their “diet” but may be unhealthy for people with emotional, binge or disordered eating tendencies. This strategy may be more successful alongside other tools, such as mindful eating and self-control practices.

If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please don’t hesitate in reaching out and I will be more than happy to answer any questions you may have. 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 ❤️️

………………………………………………………………

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂