3 tips that may be helpful in maintaining a healthy weight:

  1. Try to avoid wandering down aisles that contain foods that may tempt you in your desire to eat healthy.
  2. Begin a shopping list by looking inside your fridge at the items you made use of, eliminate buying items that were allowed to spoil.
  3. Try using the store pickup option. It can relieve you of temptation. You will be able to order beforehand only the items you may need.

Middle Eastern- Spiced spinach and lentil soup with garlic yogurt…

 

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion finely chopped
  • 1 large carrot finely chopped
  • 3 crushed garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp chili flakes
  • 2 tsp ground cumin seeds
  • 2 tsp sweet paprik
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 6 ½ cups vegetable stock
  • 3 vined ripened tomatoes chopped
  • 16 oz. spinach chopped
  • 1 lemon cut into wedges

For the Garlic Yogurt:

  • 3 oz. natural Greek yogurt
  • 2 small garlic cloves crushed
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil

Directions:

Soup:

  • Heat oil in a large pan, then add, onion, carrots, garlic, chili flakes, some salt and pepper. Stir, cover, cook for 7-8 minutes until soft and lightly golden.
  • Uncover pan, add cumin, paprika. Stir a few seconds, add puree. Add lentils and stock, bring to a boil, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Meanwhile, mix all ingredients for garlic sauce, add salt and chill.
  • Add diced tomatoes to soup and simmer for 5 minutes, add salt and pepper to taste.
  • Bunch up the spinach leaves and slice them thin (fine shreds). Stir into soup until wilted.
  • Serve with yogurt sauce on top. Sprinkle paprika on top
  • Serve with a lemon slice

Courtesy of Anarosa Nazario

White Bean and Sun-Dried Tomato Dip…

Ingredients:

-1 jar (12oz.) roasted red peppers

-1 can (15oz.) white beans, drained and rinsed

-10 oil-marinated sun-dried tomato halves, coarsely chopped

-2 garlic cloves

-3 tbsp. avocado oil

-1 tsp. dried oregano

-1 tsp. ground cumin

-1/4 tsp. chili powder or dash of cayenne pepper

-Salt and ground black pepper, to taste

Directions:

-Using a food processor or blender, process peppers until smooth

-Add beans, tomatoes, garlic, avocado oil, oregano, cumin, and chili powder

-Blend mixture until it is a smooth puree

-Season with salt and pepper

-Set aside for 1 hour-best at room temperature

-Will store up to 3 days in refrigerator

-Can also be served chilled

(Recipe complements of The American Institute of Cancer Research)

Serving Size vs. Portion Size…

Understanding the difference between serving and portion size could mean the difference in consuming extra calories especially if you are concerned about overeating. A survey by the International Food Information Council found that only 49% of Americans understand the difference. Portion size is either the amount of food you choose to eat or are given to eat by an establishment. This can vary according to what each individual decides. One third of people surveyed confused the two terms. Serving size is a determined amount set on a food label which has been determined by the FDA for nutrition purposes. A serving size is usually a minimal amount of a particular food that contains a certain number of calories. Many unconsciously assume that a portion size is the number of calories listed on the label without reading what the company considers a serving size. As a result, you may be consuming 2 or 3 times the number of calories. Example, if a ½ cup of ice cream contains 300 calories and you assume a portion size is a cup you may innocently consume twice the number of calories. It is important to read your labels carefully. You may be surprised at how little a serving size actually is.