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December 15, 2005

Holiday Green Beans

At the holidays, sometimes the menu is already decided for you -- except maybe that vegetable side dish. Here’s where we can be a bit creative and deviate from tradition. So this year, how about adding a little zip to your basic green beans recipe. Before you make your favorite cranberry relish, save out a few fresh cranberries to make this simple, festive looking and great-tasting side dish.

(Makes 6 servings)

    4 cups fresh green beans (about 12 ounces)
    1 tablespoon olive oil (or orange flavored olive oil)
    ¼ cup chopped fresh cranberries
    1 ½ teaspoons sugar
    2 tablespoons orange juice
    2 tablespoon chopped toasted pecans*

Steam green beans 5 to 7 minutes or microwave on high about 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally; drain. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a small nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add cranberries, sugar and orange juice. Cook, stirring gently, until cranberries are soft and liquid is syrupy. Stir in chopped nuts and toss mixture with green beans. Serve.

*To toast nuts, bake uncovered in ungreased shallow pan in 350°F oven about 10 minutes or until golden brown.

If you enjoyed this recipe, come and enjoy our complete collection of healthy eating recipes.

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Posted by Laura on December 15, 2005 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


December 14, 2005

Coping with Family & Friends

While it is the season to be jolly, too often family and friends manage to cast a pall on things with comments that many of us are all too familiar with.  I can remember relatives from my childhood at family gatherings calling me ‘endearing’ names like ‘marshmallow’ and wondering why I wasn’t as thin as my siblings.  My different body made me fair game for such hurtful comments, although I truly believe my relatives didn’t realize how damaging their comments were.

Fast forward to adult years and I can remember family whom I hadn’t seen for a while remarking on my appearance, the most recent one of which was a comment about a new wrinkle that had recently – and permanently – appeared on my forehead.  Had I not moved on in my understanding of how to deal with such comments, I imagine it would have left me feeling pretty bad at a time that was supposed to be full of joy.

Our most recent article meant to help readers with healthy weight loss information looks at this problem.  It lists several ways to ask for support from the people who matter to you, and who can sometimes hurt the most with their lack of awareness about how to really help you with your healthy living efforts.  But perhaps more importantly, it also suggests ways to change how we think about and react to cutting comments, unintended or otherwise. 

Check out our article on ways to cope with family and friends during the holidays.  We hope it will help make yours the best yet!

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Green Mountain at Fox Run - un centre d'amincissement exclusivement réservé aux femmes et respectueux de leur santé
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Posted by Marsha on December 14, 2005 | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack


December 13, 2005

Dish with Trish – Holiday Side Dishes

We are thrilled that Chef Trish Morrissey will be a featured guest author on this blog, sharing her kitchen insight, amazing recipes and talent, as well as her unique take on merging gourmet into everyday...and she has great perspective about herself, food, and being a woman who’s struggled with weight issues while making a living by being surrounded by food.

Holiday Side Dishes by Chef Trish Morrissey

Okay you may be thinking, who really cares about “light” side dishes during the holidays?   Can’t I just have what I really want during the holidays?  This is exactly what I was asked when I did a segment on the TV Food Network about healthy holiday side dishes.

How do you explain in a few seconds allotted for an answer what it’s really all about? In reality, it’s not about “light” or “low fat” or even the new “low carb” ideas – the way I learned to eat in a way that supported my long-term health and weight goals – all while literally surrounded by food - was to realize that “portion control” isn’t an externally determined amount.  It’s about giving ourselves a reasonable portion, which builds in a stopping point where we can step back and reasonably decide if we’re satisfied or want more. I focused on side dishes that were delicious, satisfying and portioned in unique and elegant way.  Enjoying holiday food and making it beautiful, isn’t this what we try to do every year anyway?

I also talked about balance.  For example along with your favorite mashed potatoes try sautéed swiss chard with a little walnut oil and orange juice.  The flavor in walnut oil goes a long way so you don’t need to use much and you have a truly delicious side dish that’s on the lighter side.  Who really needs the creamed green beans with the crispy onion things on top?  What are those things anyway?  They really give me the creeps and let’s be honest, how tired is that recipe?  Ladies and gents it’s time broaden our palates!

As long as we mentioned mashed potatoes here’s a couple portioning ideas. 

  • Try using a 4 ounce ice cream scoop as your serving utensil instead of the biggest spoon in the drawer. 
  • Remember the twice baked potato?  They are back and a “hot” food trend (no pun intended).  I suggest using Yukon gold potatoes instead of the standard baking potato; they have a natural buttery flavor and bake or boil like a charm. 
  • I have included my twice baked sweet onion recipe that was featured on TV Food Network; it’s a favorite of my client’s and our family.

I shall touch on one more idea.  I was thumbing through a Gourmet magazine looking for holiday inspiration when a picture caught my eye.  It was swiss chard beggar purses stuffed with a wild rice and sausage filling.  Yes there’s that swiss chard again.  Here’s a quick idea, why not just use good old Stove Top stuffing instead to fill the purses? I’ve included instructions for this too.

Well, that’s all of my thoughts for now on holiday side dishes.  Having an enchanting holiday season and if anyone has the best sugar cookie recipe in the world I would really like to try it out so let me know!!!

Posted by Gina V. on December 13, 2005 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Twice Baked Vidalia Onions

by Chef Trish MorrisseyOnion_1

Yields 6 servings

3 large sweet onions (Vidalia or Maui)

salt and white pepper

¾ cup beef or chicken stock

½ cup red wine

3 medium potatoes (Yukon gold preferred), peeled and quartered

1/3 cup Heavy cream or milk

2 tablespoons butter

Non-stick cooking spray

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Cut tops and bottoms off onions and remove outside layer of each. Cut each onion in half and place in a single layer in a shallow oven proof dish.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper, pour in stock and wine.  Cover with foil and bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until tender. Remove foil and bake until slightly browned. Remove onions from oven and set aside to cool.  Reduce oven to 350 degrees.

While onions are in oven, bring a medium pot of salted water to boil and add potatoes.  Cook over medium-high heat until fork tender, about 25 minutes.  Drain well.

Heat cream and butter in a saucepan over medium until hot and then add potatoes.  Using a potato masher or large fork, coarsely mash ingredients together.  (The potatoes will be a little lumpy and thicker than mashed potatoes).  Set aside.

When onions are cool enough to handle, scoop out the center of each half onion to make a cup.  Leave the three outer layers intact and patch the bottom with loose pieces removed from center and mince the remaining onion centers.  Fold the minced onion into the potato mixture and season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide the potato onion mixture into 6 equal parts and fill each onion cup.* Place the onions into a baking dish sprayed with non stick spray.

About 30 minutes before ready to serve, bake the onions for 20- 30 minutes or heated through (350°).  For nice color you can quickly brown under a broiler with a dab of butter on each cup.  Serve immediately.

* If working ahead. At this point onions can be refrigerated for one to days.  Be sure to pull from refrigerator and bring to room temperature before baking.

As always, more Healthy Recipes are available from our library.

Posted by Gina V. on December 13, 2005 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack


December 12, 2005

Swiss Chard Purses

Swiss chard purses (from Gourmet Magazine November 2004)

Makes 10-12 servings

5 cups of preferred filling, examples: just under cooked and wet wild rice, stuffing mixture extra moist or before baking, polenta or mashed potatoes

2 large leeks, outer leaves removed and cut length wise into 25 strips (use remaining part of leeks, chopped, in your stuffing)

2 lb green Swiss chard leaves, stems trimmed flush with leaves

11/2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

½ cup low sodium chicken broth

Prepare leek ribbons and shard leaves:
• Wash leek strips, then blanch in a large pot of boiling water, uncovered for 2 minutes and transfer with tongs to a bowl of ice water (reserve water in pot).Transfer to a colander and drain well, them transfer to paper towels and pat dry.
• Blanch chard leaves in water just until wilted, about 30 seconds, and transfer with a slotted spoon to ice water to cool.  Drain chard leaves in colander.

Make Purses:
• Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350° F.
• Spread 1 chard leaf on a work surface, using smaller leaves to patch any holes if necessary.  Chard leaf wrapper should be about 8 by 5 inches (if it’s smaller, overlap several small leaves to form a larger wrapper; don’t worry if wrapper is larger than 8 by 5).  Mound ¼ cup of stuffing in center, then gather chard up over filling to form a purse and tie closed with a leek strip. (You have extra strips in case some break.)  Make 19 more purses the same manner.
• Oil a 3-quart gratin or shallow baking dish.  Stand purses upright in dish and drizzle with olive oil. Add broth to dish and cover purses with a sheet of wax paper or parchment, then loosely cover with foil.  Bake purses until stuffing is warmed through (cut one open on the bottom to check), 35 to 40 minutes.

If working ahead:
• Make your preferred stuffing 2 days ahead, cool and chill.
• Purses can be assembled (but not baked) two days ahead and chilled in baking dish (without broth), covered.  Bring to room temperature, then add broth before baking.

Posted by Gina V. on December 12, 2005 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Do You Know Where Your Fat Cells Are?

I hope I’m not jumping the gun on some new, revolutionary invention that will help millions lose weight, save lives and win someone a Nobel Prize, but I kind of doubt it.

Research is currently being done at St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital in New York City with what’s called a 3 D scanner.  Researchers there are using these scanners to better understand where fat cells are located in the body - a picture of 2 millions points inside the body, in fact.  Ironically, these scanners were once used to interpret body size to better fit models clothes…ok, it’s ironic to me.

Why does this matter? Well, if you have belly fat, it will tell you so.  And I guess that’s important for folks who were looking in the mirror and thought that their protruding tummies or beloved handles was filled with jelly beans or hacky sac seeds! 

Better yet, it will even tell people who are not overweight, where the predominance of their fats cells lie, so I guess they can worry about it in the future.  Apparently, the researchers on this project feel the 3D scanner will be most helpful as people are losing weight so they can target their ‘problem areas’. With all due respect, I don’t think there’s much scientific evidence that you can successfully ‘target fat’ while losing weight. 

“We hope to apply this to monitor changes in the body size or body dimensions,” said Jack Wang of St. Luke’s.

This isn’t to say that being aware of where you carry fat cells isn’t important.  There is evidence that carrying a predominance of fat in one area (the belly or abdomen), creates a higher risk for other diseases, heart attack and stroke. It may also be relevant where the fat is located in the abdomen, which might have something do with metabolic syndrome.

The medical reporter for this report asks the question I think we’re all thinking. ‘Do I need a machine to tell me where I’m fat?’ I know one thing. I don’t need any more reasons to worry about my weight, other than living the happiest, healthiest and best life I’m capable of - and that’s got to be enough!

Source Article: Stephanie Stahl, Medical Report for CBS 3 - Philadelphia

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Green Mountain at Fox Run - un centre d'amincissement exclusivement réservé aux femmes et respectueux de leur santé
amincissement - maigrir - perdre du poidssanté - bien-être et respectueux de leur santé
amincissement,maigrir,perdre du poids,santé,bien-être,surpoids,rondeurs,surcharge pondérale,amincissement,traitement de l'obésité,minceur,perte de poids ,perdre du poids,perte pondérale,aigrir,estime de soi,remise en forme,être bien dans sa peau,maigrir sainement,cure pondérale (Contrex),vitalité,diminution de l'apport calorique,déficit énergétique,diète hypocalorique

Posted by Cindy on December 12, 2005 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


December 08, 2005

Roasted Salmon and Root Vegetables with Lemon-Thyme Sauce

Yesterday's post was "Keeping Fish on the Menu" and 'in keeping' with that theme, here's a hearty and healthy dish for a cold winter day. Because it's made with olive oil and is rich in omega-3 fatty acids found naturally in the salmon, it's good for your heart! What's more, that healthy, good-tasting fat goes a long way towards satisfying with less. Enjoy this as part of an all-around good-for-you gourmet delight.

(Makes 4 servings)

    1 large baking potato, peeled and thinly sliced
    1 large sweet potato or yam, peeled and thinly sliced
    2 parsnip, peeled and thinly sliced
    1 turnip, peeled and thinly sliced
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    Salt
    Pepper
    4 (4-ounce) skinless salmon fillets
    1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
    1 tablespoon lemon juice

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Spray rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. In large bowl, toss vegetables with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Spread vegetables onto baking sheet and roast about 20 minutes or until slightly soft. Turn vegetables and continue to roast until slightly brown (about 10 minutes). Remove vegetables from the oven and push together to form a base for the salmon. Arrange salmon on top of the vegetables and sprinkle with thyme and lemon juice; roast until salmon flakes easily with a fork (about 10-15 minutes). Divide into 4 equal portions and transfer to individual plates; garnish with Lemon Thyme Sauce.

    Lemon Thyme Sauce:
    1 minced shallot
    1/4 cup white wine
    2 tablespoons lemon juice
    3 tablespoons butter, cut into 3 pieces
    1/4 teaspoon arrowroot (optional)
    1 teaspoon chopped thyme
    Salt
    Pepper

In small sauce pan, combine shallots, wine and lemon juice. Cook over medium heat, uncovered until shallots are tender and much of the liquid has evaporated (about 5 minutes). Shallots should be tender but not dark. Remove from heat and add 1 piece of butter, stirring with a wire whisk or wooden spoon until the butter has melted. Place the pan over low heat and add the remaining butter, one piece at a time until the butter melts. (If thicker sauce is desired, stir in arrowroot and continue to cook until thickened (about 1 minute). Stir in thyme and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

If you enjoyed this recipe, come and enjoy our complete collection of healthy eating recipes.

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Posted by Laura on December 8, 2005 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


December 07, 2005

Healthy Eating—Keeping Fish on the Menu

If you’re like me, you like fish.  Some of my favorite dishes are pasta with some sort of fish – linguini with clam sauce, shrimp with feta cheese over rigatoni, grilled salmon with a soy sauce/garlic/ginger sauce, plain old tunafish sandwiches. These and similar dishes are quick, easy to make, and don’t just taste good – they’re high in protein, which can help manage our hunger and keep us satisfied.  Plus, they tend to be rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which is good for our hearts (and maybe other things, too).   

But I often worry about what else I’m eating when I choose fish.  For me, it’s one of the foods that I think of first when people talk about food safety.  Maybe it’s because I’m a dietitian, but my ears prick up when I hear reports about food safety, and fish is a food that I’ve been hearing a lot of food safety noise about for a number of years. 

So I was happy to find an online calculator for determining how much fish you can safely consume based on mercury intake. There’s also a list of fish ranked according to mercury content, and it tells you which fish to eat less of due to overfishing concerns.

I tested the calculator and saw that my consumption of fish last month left me within the ‘safe’ zone for mercury consumption.  That lifted at least one load off my mind.  Now it’s back to wondering what I’m going to get the kids for Christmas/Hanukkah/birthday (and they all happen at the same time this year!)…..

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Green Mountain at Fox Run - un centre d'amincissement exclusivement réservé aux femmes et respectueux de leur santé
amincissement - maigrir - perdre du poidssanté - bien-être et respectueux de leur santé
amincissement,maigrir,perdre du poids,santé,bien-être,surpoids,rondeurs,surcharge pondérale,amincissement,traitement de l'obésité,minceur,perte de poids ,perdre du poids,perte pondérale,aigrir,estime de soi,remise en forme,être bien dans sa peau,maigrir sainement,cure pondérale (Contrex),vitalité,diminution de l'apport calorique,déficit énergétique,diète hypocalorique

Posted by Marsha on December 7, 2005 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


December 06, 2005

Intuitive Eating – Suddenly Hip

Chisinau It’s been very interesting watching the latest weight control “it diet" gather steam in the media. It’s the “non-diet” diet  of Steven Hawks EdD (Doctor of Education) , professor at Brigham Young University, and the founder, president and director of the new National Institute of Intuitive Eating ("doors opening in July 2006", according to website).

Dr. Hawk's version of “intuitive eating” is an amalgam of the philosophy that’s been helping women for the past 33 years at Green Mountain at Fox Run, along with his own ideas about this and that. Normally "intuitive eating" is not sexy enough on its own to merit much media attention - it's just too commonsensical and not gimmicky enough - but since Dr. Hawk has married it with the words “diet” and “weight loss” so heavily, it's become the new "in" thing. It’s been interesting to see this “new and hottest trend” emerging when a whole lot of others (physcians, clinicians, therapists, movement therapists, dietitians) in the Health at Every Size and non-diet movements have been guiding people to healthy weights and mindsets for a lot of years through mindfuness and intuitive eating and exercise.

Although very simple in approach (eat until satisfied, then stop), the practical application can become complicated when years of dieting, societal pressures, body unacceptance, and being solely focused on weight loss are in the mix. For those that can just read "eat, stop when full" and do it, more power to you. Really, I mean that.

But for most, finding the place of peaceful eating inside of them requires some guidance, and often being immersed in an environment that is free of the judgments, pressures and obligations of “life” and ther relentless pressure of believing your body is not any good until it "loses weight." Learning to eat until satisfaction is a skill and practice like any other – you can go out and whack a ball with a golf club and maybe you hit a hole in one. Others of us need some help, particularly if we don’t want to hit a hole in one, but finish the course competently every time. Learning the philosophy of the game, having someone show us the proper grip, letting our muscles learn what a good swing feels like might be some ways that we’d learn how to be “natural.” I’m glad I had a coach like Green Mountain to help me be natural with food and my body, but for any of you that can read about it and do it, here's the latest story on Dr. Hawks Intuitive Eating.

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Green Mountain at Fox Run - un centre d'amincissement exclusivement réservé aux femmes et respectueux de leur santé
amincissement - maigrir - perdre du poidssanté - bien-être et respectueux de leur santé
amincissement,maigrir,perdre du poids,santé,bien-être,surpoids,rondeurs,surcharge pondérale,amincissement,traitement de l'obésité,minceur,perte de poids ,perdre du poids,perte pondérale,aigrir,estime de soi,remise en forme,être bien dans sa peau,maigrir sainement,cure pondérale (Contrex),vitalité,diminution de l'apport calorique,déficit énergétique,diète hypocalorique

Posted by Gina V. on December 6, 2005 | Permalink | Comments (8) | TrackBack


December 05, 2005

Losing Big Weight Gains Ratings for NBC

NBC (a network w/ lackluster ratings), is a big winner with The Biggest Loser.  So, why did this show bring in such impressive ratings for its finale last Wednesday night?  One might argue the spectacle of witnessing dramatic and inspirational human transformation - or simply the spectacle.

NBC executives announced last year that their show would inspire millions of fat Americans to get off the couch and get fit, the old fashioned way – through diet and exercise.  However, the last time I checked, most over-fat Americans aren’t weighing themselves on a gigantic scale in front of millions of television viewers wearing spandex 4 sizes to small (to magnify their obesity) or, in the case of the men, with shirts off so cameras could zoom in on their stretch marks and girth - all for a potential payout of a quarter million dollars. 

When attempting to lose weight or get healthy, most of us don’t get up in the morning to a buffet of doughnuts and pizza just to ‘tempt our resolve’, or compete in daily relay races which might include downing milk shake shots.  On the fitness side of things, getting ‘off the couch’ is a far cry from intense (at times seemingly dangerous) workouts conducted daily by two celebrity fitness trainers for hours on end.

And the message?  Fat people are willing to trade their dignity for a chance at losing weight because that's how desperately they want it, and NBC is just cynical and greedy enough to make it happen.  How inspirational.

MattI debated whether I'd comment on "The Biggest Loser", because there is so much about the premise of this show I found distasteful.  But, after witnessing at least part of the finale last week, no matter how manipulative I may have found the show to be, I couldn't help but be happy for all of the contestants (who lost hundreds of pounds).  Most of them making mind-blowing transformations in their bodies and no doubt most of them transformed emotionally.  And for someone who's been there, it was hard not to feel empathy, sympathy and joy all at once for these folks.  Watching their pure elation, joy and sense of accomplishment left me feeling nothing but happy for them. 

The question is, will NBC have the guts to do a five year follow up and just to see how they coped in the real world.  For their sake, I hope they stay fit and healthy because we'd all want that for them, no matter how they got there.

To get more insight into the 'The Biggest Loser', check out these articles in The Yale Daily News and The Connecticut Post.

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Green Mountain at Fox Run - un centre d'amincissement exclusivement réservé aux femmes et respectueux de leur santé
amincissement - maigrir - perdre du poidssanté - bien-être et respectueux de leur santé
amincissement,maigrir,perdre du poids,santé,bien-être,surpoids,rondeurs,surcharge pondérale,amincissement,traitement de l'obésité,minceur,perte de poids ,perdre du poids,perte pondérale,aigrir,estime de soi,remise en forme,être bien dans sa peau,maigrir sainement,cure pondérale (Contrex),vitalité,diminution de l'apport calorique,déficit énergétique,diète hypocalorique

Posted by Cindy on December 5, 2005 | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack