fitness gadgets

 

Healthy Head Start with these 2018 Fitness Gadgets. January means hitting the gym — hard. Your already depleted list of new year resolutions inevitably involves notes to lose a few pounds and raise your fitness levels: the marathon is only four months away, and that new road bike isn’t going to ride itself.

It feels a little daunting, but there is an upside: new year means new gear. Those miles will go more quickly when you’ve got a personal trainer in your ear, and a new pair of smart scales is the incentive you need to push a little harder in the spinning studio.
From jackets that heat up for cold runs to water bottles that glow to remind you to drink, here’s the smartest fitness tech you need in 2018.

The wearable fitness gadgets

There’s no point going the distance if you can’t track your results and feel smug. Fitbit’s Charge 2 ($129.95, amazon.com) is a neat, lightweight option that’ll record all your primary fitness stats, monitor your heart-rate and sleep. If you’re happy to pay more, Fitbit’s Ionic smartwatch has a bigger screen and offers more: it’ll track your GPS, provide personalized workouts and let you make payments and control your smart lights at home at the same time (from $269.00, amazon.com).

The Apple Watch Series 3 (from $350.00, amazon.com) offers many of the same tools but has an enhanced focus on your heart, plotting your pulse readings on handy graphs.

If you’d instead not wear something on your wrist, the Myzone heart-rate belt ($139.99, amazon.com) sits around your chest and links to your smartphone, and the Moov Now (from $47.23, amazon.com) is a lightweight fitness monitor you can wear on your wrist or ankle.

The soundtrack

Miles pass more quickly with music. Denon’s wireless sports earphones ($149.00, amazon.com) feature unique ear-hook technology so they’ll stay secure when you’re on the move. For something more sturdy, the Beats by Dr. Dre Mixr On-Ear Headphones have a lightweight, flexible headband that folds away when not in use.

If you’d instead not take your phone running, Samsung’s Gear IconX earbuds ($186.99, amazon.com) let you upload music from your phone, so they work as standalone media players.

Sometimes even Dua Lipa isn’t enough of a motivator, so LifeBEAM’s Vi earphones ($159.99, amazon.com) speak to you during your workout, acting as a personal trainer in your ear. She’ll train you on your time, breathing, step count and heart rate as you go, while still playing your music.

The look

If you want to take your wearables even further, Athos’s Compression Capri Tights ($184.99, www.sportchek.ca) have embedded sensors which offer real-time biometric tracking, from muscle activity to calorie expenditure. These sync with an app, telling you which muscles are firing and how much they’re being exerted.

When it’s dark, Proviz’s Nightrider LED jacket ($94.26, amazon.com) and Metier’s Beacon Jacket (£250, metiercycling.com) feature LED lights so you’ll stand out on the roads. For cold days, Blaze’s Explorer Jacket (from £200, blazewear.com) incorporates TriZone technology to keep you warm at the touch of a button.

The accessories

Now even your water bottle has got smart: the Hydrate Spark 2.0 ($54.95, amazon.com) tracks your water intake and glows to remind you to drink. It’ll tell you when you’ve met your daily goal and syncs with your Fitbit or Apple Watch to monitor your hydration.

fitness gadgets
Hydrate Spark 2.0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Release your knots and tension after your workout with Pulseball (£90, pulseroll.com), which vibrates and feels like a sports massage, then use Fitbit’s Aria 2 smart scales ($129.95, amazon.com), which syncs with your smartphone to track your weight, body fat percentage and BMI.

Fitness gadgets apps

If you’ve got all the gear but no idea, FizzUp (free, fizzup.com) will act as a personal trainer in your pocket. The app creates a simple workout and nutrition plans, as well as motivational add-ons, which are optional blocks of cardio, abdominal and stretching exercises. You can also use Sworkit (free, sworkit.com) for easy guided workout plans on any device, while TruBe (free, trubeapp.com) takes things one step further and sends a personal trainer to your home or nearby park at the click of a button.

If you’d instead not exercise alone, CorePower Yoga app (www.apppicker.com) is a free app that lets you discover and book classes at local boutique studios near you.

I hope you found this article helpful. If you have anything that you’d like to share or any opinions on any of the content on my site, please do speak up. I look forward to your comments, questions and the sharing of ideas.

Note: Thank-you for supporting this website with the purchases you make on the provided affiliate links.
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How to get a Good Fitness Workout

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Introducing the Amazing Fitbit Ionic

Shopping Guide for Best Fitbit Fitness Trackers

Tips for Buying Best Home Exercise Equipment

 

References:

Fitness Gadgets To Give You A Healthy Head Start In 2018 .., https://www.standard.co.uk/tech/fitness-gadgets-to-give-you-a-healthy-head-start (accessed January 04, 2018).

 

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stressing out your heart

 

 

10 Healthy Eating Habits That Will Change Your Life. Change your eating, change your life. Nutrition experts dole out a ton of advice about how to eat well—and, most importantly, not lose your mind doing it.

But some tips stand the test of time, and that experts themselves follow. (Because yes, they are human, too.) Here are ten habits they live by—and that will change the way you eat.

eating healthy habits
Guide to Healthy Eating

Don’t give anything up

Eat all the foods you enjoy—but the key is to do it in smaller quantities. In fact,  it’s the number one change I made that’s helped me maintain my weight loss. I didn’t want to feel deprived as I had in previous attempts to lose weight. The worst thing you can do is be too strict, then rebound by overeating because you’re not satisfied.

Always have a plan for Healthy Eating Habits

It’s easy to get sucked into the lure of the restaurant menu when you’re hungry, and everything looks good. You don’t have to order the plainly grilled chicken breast with steamed veggies—that would be boring. Order what you’d like, but balance the meal out with the rest of the day.

If you know you’re going out for a steak and potatoes dinner, go easy on the meat and starch at lunch. Make sure you also fit in good fares like whole grains, fruit, veggies, and nuts and seeds in the other meals and snacks that day. That way a hunk of steak won’t derail your diet, and you’ll leave happy.

Forget calorie counting

healthy eating habits
Calorie Intake

Ditching the habit and instead focus on good-for-you foods. Instead of how many calories, ask yourself where the food came from and if it’s nutritious. Healthy, nutrient-rich foods will keep hunger at bay, help maintain stable blood sugar levels, minimize cravings, and help your brain signal your belly when you’re full. In other words, you don’t have to go through all the trouble of counting.

Don’t eat boring food

Nutritionists are always saying to eat more vegetables, so cook them in a way that takes them from ho-hum to yum. I even think that steamed veggies can be very dull! Always incorporate high-flavor add-ons to jazz up veggies, like sautéing with olive oil and garlic, or spraying them with olive oil before throwing them in an oven with salt, pepper, and garlic powder.

That way, you don’t equate “healthy” with “tasteless,” a mindset that will knock you off the veggie bandwagon fast. Another tip: buy a spiralizer and make zucchini noodles. Topped off with a creamy tomato sauce, you’ll feel like you’re eating pasta.

Prep and store for Healthy Eating Habits

Even more important than shopping for healthy foods: actually, eating them. When you get home from the store or farmer’s market, bounty of fruits and veggies in tow, wash and chop them right away and store in a pretty glass container in your fridge. Studies show that spending more time on food prep is linked to better eating habits.

It’s all about convenience—if they’re ready for you, you’ll grab them in a pinch. If not? It’s chips and dip time. You can also do this with other foods, like making a batch of quinoa for the week or roasting a bunch of veggies to throw together for quick lunches.

healthy eating habits
big lunch doesn’t mean a burger and fries

Eat lunch like a king

You’ve heard that breakfast should be the most significant meal of your day, but you may not be that hungry when you wake up. In fact, your biggest meal should be around noon when your digestion is at its peak, and you can feed your body when it needs fuel. That means you don’t need a huge meal for dinner only to sit and catch up on your favorite TV show and then go to bed.

But “big” doesn’t mean burger and fry big. At lunch, emphasize protein and greens, like a hearty bowl of lentil soup and kale salad. Another bonus: after dinner, you won’t have the feeling you need to unbutton your pants.

Drop the food guilt

It’s trendy to think “food should be fuel” or that food is something that helps you lose (or, ahem, gain) weight. But considering only regarding number on the scale takes away a considerable part of what eating is about: pleasure. It’s true: feeling guilty about your food choices can undermine weight loss—and even pack on the pounds—while a celebratory mindset gives you more control over your diet and can thwart weight gain, found a 2014 study in the journal Appetite.

Eat the rainbow for Healthy Eating Habits

Greens, oranges, reds, purples, yellows you get the picture. Eating the rainbow will supply your body with a range of disease-fighting phytonutrients, and will naturally fill you up to help you cut back on unhealthy foods. Plus, most adults struggle with getting the recommended five servings a day.

A worldwide study in 2014 found 58 to 88% of adults don’t hit that mark. Aiming for a different intake of produce from all colors of the rainbow will help you boost your intake. In another 2012 study, adults who were offered a variety of vegetables ate more of them without increasing the calories at the meal.

Know where your snacks are

healthy eating habits
healthy snacks

Sure, you don’t know what you’ll be in the mood for later, and will you even be hungry? Yes, probably. After all, increased snacking is one reason behind the rise in calorie intake over the past few decades, according to a 2011 study in PLOS ONE.

When you leave your office to find something, that’s when you make bad choices. That’s when a hot pretzel, a bag of candy, or donut can look very appealing. Make sure you have an emergency stash of snacks, like Greek yogurt, individual packs of nuts, dried fruit, and nitrate-free jerky.

Follow the 80/20 rule…kind of

There are two ways you can think about 80/20 eating. One: eat healthy 80% of the time and save 20% for splurges. That’s great because it stresses how consumption is not about perfection, and as I mentioned earlier, how it could be pleasurable, too. However, what does that look like? That might mean having a 150-calorie treat daily or saving it all up for a big meal out on the weekend. Make it work for you rather than stressing out about percentages.

Another spin on the 80/20 rule: stopping eating when you’re 80% full. That means slowing down and checking in periodically throughout the meal about what your body is telling you. Does the food no longer taste great? Are you getting that “I don’t need any more feeling”? Thinking 80/20 will help slow you down and be more mindful. Being in tune with your body prevents overeating.

Final Thought about Healthy Eating Habits

If you think of eating as something enjoyable and something you do without guilt or without judging yourself, and you stay active, you’re less likely to overeat, have a better diet, and maintain any weight loss for the long haul.

I hope you found this article helpful. If you have anything that you’d like to share or any opinions on any of the content on my site, please do speak up. I look forward to your comments, questions and the sharing of ideas.

Note: Thank-you for supporting this website with the purchases you make through the provided affiliate links.
Recommended articles:

Do you have Healthy Eating Habits?

Are you trying to get rid of Stubborn Belly Fat?

How to Plan and Enjoy a Healthy Diet

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6 Ways to Relieve Stress Instantly

References:
Healthy Eating Habits That Will Change Your Life – Health, http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20934662,00.html (accessed January 12, 2018).
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lose weight now

 

You want to Lose Weight Now, But How? And you want to do it safely, But How? First, keep in mind that many experts say it’s best to lose weight gradually. It’s more likely to stay off. If you shed pounds too fast, you’ll lose muscle, bone, and water instead of fat says the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

The academy’s advice: Aim to lose 1-2 pounds per week, and avoid fad diets or products that make promises that sound too good to be true. It’s best to base your weight loss on changes you can stick with over time.

For faster results, you’ll need to work with a doctor, to make sure that you stay healthy and get the nutrients that you need.

Make a Plan

work with a dietitian

You’ve probably heard the saying, “calories in, calories out”; as in, you just need to burn more. But it’s not that simple, as many people can tell you from their own experience.

Your metabolism — how well your body turns calories into fuel — also matters. And if you cut too many calories, it’s not right for you. You slow down your metabolism, and that can make you fall short on some nutrients.

There are many ways you can do this, without cutting calories too much. You could:

  • Cut back on portions.
  • Figure out how many calories you get on a usual day, and trim back a bit.
  • Read food labels to know how many calories are in each serving.
  • Drink more water, so you’re not as hungry.

Whatever method you use, you’ll need to favor good-for-you foods like vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and lean protein, so you keep up proper nutrition. Working with a dietitian is a good idea, so you make a plan that covers those needs.

Get Accountability and Support

Many apps can help you track your eating. Since you probably have your smartphone with you all the time, you can use it to keep up with your plan. Or keep a pen-and-paper food journal of what you ate and when.

You’ll also want to have people on your side to help you stay motivated and to cheer you on. So ask your family and friends to support your efforts to lose weight.

You might also want to join a weight loss group where you can talk about how it’s going with people who can relate. Or talk with someone you know who’s healthily lost weight. Their encouragement is “contagious,” in a right way!

Find Out What Drives You to Eat

lose weight now
examples of empty calories

At the most basic level, food is fuel. It gives you the energy to do things. But very few people eat just for that reason. It’s at every social gathering. And it’s where a lot of us turn when we have a rough day.

You’ll need to know what makes you want to eat when you’re not hungry and have a plan for those moments.

The first step is finding out what your triggers are. Is it stress, anger, anxiety, or depression in a particular part of your life? Or is the food your main reward when something good happens?

Next, try to notice when those feelings come up and have a plan ready to do something else instead of eating. Could you take a walk? Text a friend?

Lastly, reward yourself for making a different choice. Just don’t use food as the reward.

Reset What and When You Eat

You don’t have to go vegan, gluten-free, or quit any particular food group to lose weight. In fact, you’re more likely to keep the pounds off for the long term if it’s something you can live.

But it does make sense to cut way down on or cut out empty calories.

Limit added sugars to Lose Weight Now:

These are the sugars in cookies, cakes, sugar-sweetened drinks, and other items — not the sugars that are naturally in fruits, for instance. Sugary foods often have a lot of calories but few nutrients. Aim to spend less than 10% of your daily calories on added sugars.

Be choosy about carbs to Lose Weight Now:

You can decide which ones you eat, and how much. Look for those that are low on the glycemic index (for instance, asparagus is lower on the glycemic index than a potato) or smaller in carbs per serving than others. Whole grains are better choices than processed items because processing removes vital nutrients such as fiber, iron, and B vitamins. They may be added back, such as in “enriched” bread.

Include protein to Lose Weight Now:

It’s satisfying and will help keep up your muscles. There are vegetarian and vegan sources (nuts, beans, and soy are a few), as well as lean meat, poultry, fish, and dairy.

Most Americans get enough protein but could choose to get it from leaner sources, so you may already have plenty in your diet. Your exact protein needs depend on your age, gender, and how active you are.

Make friends with good fats to Lose Weight Now:

lose weight now
good fats vs bad fats

Small amounts of fat can help you feel full and less like you’re on a diet. The better choices are those in fish, nuts, and seeds, and olive oil or coconut oils. Those have unsaturated fats — polyunsaturated or monounsaturated fats, specifically.

Fill up with fiber to Lose Weight Now:

You can get that from vegetables, whole grains, fruits — any plant food will have fiber. Some have more than others. Top sources include artichokes, green peas, broccoli, lentils, and lima beans. Among fruits, raspberries lead the list.

Eat more often to Lose Weight Now:

If you eat 5-6 times a day, it could keep hunger at bay. You could split your calories equally across all of those mini-meals, or make some more significant than others. You will need to plan portions so that you don’t end up eating more than you bargained for.

What About Meal Replacements to Lose Weight Now?

These products will control your calories. They’re convenient and take the guesswork out of dieting.

Again, though, you’ll need to change your eating habits to keep the weight off if you go off the meal replacements.

Watch your drinks to Lose Weight Now:

lose weight now
examples of zero calorie drinks

One easy way to lose weight quickly is to cut out liquid calories, such as soda, juice, and alcohol. Replace them with zero-calorie drinks like lemon water, unsweetened tea, or black coffee.

Diet drinks will save you calories, compared with sugary beverages. But if you then reach for a cookie or other treat because you’re still hungry or you think you kept enough calories for it, that plan backfires.

Should You Fast to Lose Weight Now?

You might think that fasting is a quick way to drop pounds. But experts don’t recommend it because it’s not a long-term solution. It’s better to have an eating plan that you can stick to over time and fits into your lifestyle.

All fasts aren’t the same. Some involve skipping all food. There are also fasts where you eat every other day. There hasn’t been a lot of research on how well off-and-on fasting works in the long run.

During the first days of your fast, you may feel hungry and grumpy. You may also get constipated. And you won’t have the energy to do much, physically. Drink lots of water and take a daily multivitamin. You should also tell your doctor, especially if you take medications that will probably need to be adjusted.

Remember that if you do fast, you’ll still need to change your eating habits once your fast ends.

Final Thoughts:

No matter how you kick-start your weight loss, the best way to keep it off is with long-lasting lifestyle changes, like a healthy eating plan and physical activity. If you’re not sure where to start, how many calories to cut, or how to do it safely, you might want to consult a Registered Dietitian.

I hope you found this article helpful. If you have anything that you’d like to share or any opinions on any of the content on my site, please do speak up. I look forward to your comments, question and the sharing of ideas.

Note: Thank-you for supporting this website through the purchases you make on the provided affiliate links.
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How to Healthy Eating Tips for Teens

References:

How To Lose Weight Fast And Safely – WebMD, https://www.webmd.com/diet/lose-weight-fast (accessed January 22, 2018).

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precor efx 225

 

Unlock the Powerful Precor EFX 225 Energy Series Elliptical. The Precor EFX 225 is among the best elliptical trainers that you won’t outgrow. Whether you’re a newcomer to cardio training or have advanced experience, this cross-trainer with motorized incline can provide workouts with just the right challenge. Expect it to serve you well for many years too: Owners take millions of strides before the machine needs maintenance!

Additionally, the rear drive Precor EFX 225 Energy Series Crosstrainer is among the top ellipticals in a world-famous lineup. Compared with home ellipticals from other brands, any Precor EFX is likely the winner regarding delivering joint-friendly cardio training with just the right amount of challenge. One highlight of the EFX 225, in particular, is its eight-level motorized incline, which can boost the famously smooth Precor stride from flat to a maximum of 25 degrees for supercharged calorie burn and targeted muscle toning.

Read More

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quick and easy breakfast ideas

 

12 Quick and Easy Breakfast Ideas to try. You have five minutes before you need to leave to make it work on time. And you haven’t eaten anything for breakfast. Do you skip breakfast altogether, visit a drive-thru, or stop by the vending machine in your company’s break room? If you answered yes to any of these options, then it’s time for a change.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Therefore, plan a healthy breakfast of whole grains, low-fat protein, low-fat dairy, and fruits or vegetables that don’t take a lot of time to prepare in the morning.

When you eat a healthy breakfast in the morning, your productivity increases, you can stay awake and alert until lunchtime and avoid over-eating. Therefore, it saves money by not purchasing unhealthy snacks from overpriced vending machines or going to the drive-thru.

Furthermore, variety in your food preparation will make breakfast more enjoyable. Make sure to plan healthy meals and avoid frozen or packaged foods in the morning.

Breakfast Planning and Preparation

Some advanced planning and preparation make cooking breakfasts easy.

Here are some valuable tips to make hassle-free meals:

  • Invest in some sturdy, well-made hard-sided food storage containers, freezer bags, and flexible, inexpensive plastic storage containers.
  • To quickly and easily access ingredients and staples for these recipes, you can cook and bake some items before you need them.
  • If you have well-made storage containers, you can keep homemade cereals fresh for months at a time.
  • Use freezer bags to store fresh fruits, berries, and other breakfast ingredients in the fridge, and take your breakfast to work in cheap, flexible plastic containers.

Take the Time to Plan Your Weekly Meals.

  • Having a rough idea of what you intend to eat for the week helps you plan your grocery trips, and helps you with advanced prep work for your meals.
  • Review the Lists of Ingredients for Recipes.
  • Create a grocery list using these ingredients, and begin looking for sales of the items you need.
  • Set Aside One Day a Week to Spend Time Preparing Food for Your Breakfasts.

Once you have the basics down, you can begin cooking and bake. Here are some breakfast ideas that you can pull together over the weekend, the night before, or very quickly in the morning. You’ll be able to eat on your commute, at your desk, or during that last five minutes before you have to leave the house.

Here are 12 Quick & Easy Breakfast Recipes and Ideas to try

1. Baked Oatmeal

Ingredients

2 cups old-fashioned oats
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped nuts (walnuts, almonds, pecans)
1/3 cup dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, cherries)
One tsp baking powder
1 1/2 cups 2% milk
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 tbsp butter, melted
One large egg

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Stir together the oats, brown sugar, nuts, dried fruit, and baking powder.
3. In a separate bowl, whisk the milk, applesauce, butter, and egg. Stir into the oats mixture until combined.
4. Coat an 11 x 7 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray and pour the batter into the dish.
5. Bake for 20 minutes in a 375-degree oven.
6. After baking, allow to cool and cut into single servings. Wrap in plastic wrap and store in the freezer using a freezer bag. In the morning, remove the cover and heat in the microwave for about 45 seconds or until gooey and warm.

quick and easy breakfast ideas
healthy homemade oatmeal

2. Hummus, Tomato, and Cucumber on a Whole Wheat Bagel

Prepare hummus over the weekend and store it in the refrigerator.

Directions

1. Drain and rinse a can of garbanzo beans.
2. Spin it in the food processor with a couple of garlic cloves, 2 tbsp sun-dried tomatoes (optional), salt, and pepper to taste.
3. Drizzle in 3 -4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or more, until you reach your desired consistency.
4. Slather over a freshly sliced and toasted whole wheat bagel, and top with thin slices of fresh tomato and cucumber. And I have found that bagels from the grocery store’s bakery department taste just as good as bagels from a bagel shop and cost much less.

3. Frozen Fruit Smoothies

Directions

1. Use fresh fruit and frozen fruit, such as apples, bananas, blueberries, mango, pineapple, and strawberries.
2. Add some greens, like celery, cucumber, or spinach, and 1/2-1 cup of water.
3. To make the smoothie creamy, add coconut milk, low-fat milk, soy milk, or yogurt.
4. Add an extra shot of protein by adding in one serving of tofu. Silken tofu works best in smoothies, and you can find everyday tofu or coconut-flavored tofu at the grocery store.
5. Pour into a travel container and off you go.

4. Homemade Granola Bars

Ingredients

2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup sliced or chopped mix of nuts, like almonds, walnuts, and pecans
1/2 cup shredded coconut, unsweetened if possible
1/2 cup toasted wheat germ
1/3 cup honey
1/3 cup maple syrup
Two tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups dried fruit, such as cranberries, raisins, cherries, and chopped apricots

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2. Combine the oats and nuts and spread the mixture evenly on a rimmed baking sheet.
3. Bake for 10 minutes, stirring the mixture after five minutes. Keep a close eye on the granola; you don’t want the oats and nuts to burn.
4. After baking, carefully transfer the mixture to a large bowl.
5. Stir in the wheat germ, coconut, honey, maple syrup, vanilla, salt, and dried fruit and thoroughly mix the ingredients.
6. Butter a 9 x 12 baking dish and line it with parchment paper.
7. Pour the granola mixture into the pan and press it down with a spatula to pack the granola tightly. If you don’t pack the granola into the pan, the granola will fall apart after baking.
8. Bake for about 25 minutes or until golden brown.
9. Chill several hours or overnight before cutting into squares. It makes about 16 squares. Store the granola bars in a freezer bag in the fridge.

quick and easy breakfast ideas
granola bars

5. Breakfast Spinach Salad is a Easy Breakfast Ideas

The central star of this healthy breakfast salad is spinach, an excellent source of vitamins, fiber, and calcium.

Top the spinach with a hard-boiled egg, Canadian bacon, chopped tomatoes, your favorite vinaigrette, and a whole wheat pita.

6. Another Breakfast Ideas is Stuffed Whole Wheat Pita Sandwich

Stuff the pita with lean meat or fish, such as turkey or tuna, your favorite low-fat cheese, vegetables, such as cucumbers, tomatoes, and spinach, and a sliced hard-boiled egg. To save time in the morning, prepare the sandwich the night before.

7. Breakfast Pizza is a Delicious Easy Breakfast ideas

Split a whole wheat English muffin and top each slice with a thin slice of Canadian bacon, a fresh tomato slice, and 2 tbsp of shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese. Bake in a toaster oven at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
Bake the pizza while you prepare for work in the morning and you can have a hearty breakfast ready right before you walk out the door.

8. Fruit and Nut Breakfast Cookies

Ingredients

One large egg
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
3 tbsp honey
2 tbsp smooth peanut butter
One tsp vanilla
1 cup whole-wheat flour
3/4 cup old-fashioned oats
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup chopped nuts, such as walnuts, almonds or pecans
1/4 cup dried fruit, such as raisins or cranberries

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. Beat egg lightly, and add applesauce, honey, peanut butter, and vanilla. Mix until combined.
3. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, oats, salt, and baking soda. Add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture and stir until combined.
4. Stir in the nuts and dried fruit.
5. Grease cookie sheet with butter. With a spoon, drop batter onto the cookie sheet and flatten slightly. Bake for 8 – 9 minutes. It makes about 20 cookies.
6. Make a batch or two and store in a freezer bag in the fridge.

9. Freezer Breakfast Burritos (my favorite) Easy Breakfast Ideas

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil
1 pound turkey sausage
One green or red sweet pepper, chopped
One small onion, chopped
12 large eggs
1/2 cup 2% milk (optional)
1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper
cheese, shredded
salsa (optional)
12-14 medium sized tortillas

Directions

1. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat and add the turkey sausage, pepper, and onion.
2. Break the sausage up into tiny pieces and brown the sausage until thoroughly cooked, and peppers and onions are soft. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, salt, and pepper until combined.
4. Heat a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add a tablespoon of butter and melt all over the pan. Add the eggs and scramble until cooked thoroughly.
5. Warm the tortillas in microwave per the package instructions.
6. Layer 1/2 cup scrambled eggs, 1/2 cup cooked sausage and peppers mixture, 1-2 tbsp shredded cheese, and a little salsa on a warmed medium-sized tortilla. Fold up into a burrito.
7. Place each burrito on a baking sheet lined with wax paper and flash-freeze in the freezer for at least 60 minutes. Wrap each burrito in foil and store in a freezer bag in the fridge.
8. When ready to eat, remove foil, wrap in a paper towel and microwave for about 60 seconds or until warm all the way through. Breakfast is served!

quick and easy breakfast ideas
breakfast burrito

10. Savory Breakfast Muffins

Ingredients

Six large eggs
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1/4 cup chopped Canadian bacon
1/2 cup chopped red pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 cup flour
1/3 cup old-fashioned oats
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp pepper

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and applesauce until combined.
3. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, oats, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and pepper. Add to the egg mixture and stir until just combined. Mix in the cheese, Canadian bacon, pepper, and parsley.
4. Prepare a 12-muffin pan with non-stick spray. Pour in the batter and bake at 375 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until cooked thoroughly. The tops of the muffins should be set and a toothpick poked through the muffin should come out clean. Cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes and then remove from pan.
5. Once cooled, wrap individually in plastic wrap and place in a freezer bag and store in the fridge. When ready to eat, remove plastic wrap, wrap in a paper towel and microwave for 30-45 seconds until heated thoroughly.

11. Greek Yogurt is a Simple and Easy Breakfast Ideas

Mix yogurt with fresh berries or bananas, and a scoop of homemade granola or muesli. Combining the tasty yogurt with fresh fruit and a low-fat grain keeps you full until lunchtime. Greek yogurt is also a healthy and nutritious snack idea.

12. Cold Cereal is a Favorite Breakfast Ideas

A tried-and-true favorite, you can quickly fix a bowl of cereal before you head to work. Combine homemade granola or muesli with fruit and soy milk to kickstart your morning.

Fruit contains essential vitamins and minerals and soy has a protein that can give you the extra energy you need in the morning. Also, the carbohydrates in the cereal keep you full, and a late-morning snack won’t tempt you.

Final Word on Quick and Easy Breakfast Ideas

Making a healthy, homemade breakfast takes some initial planning and kitchen prep time either the weekend or the night before your workday. If you can spend an hour or two a couple of occasions a week preparing breakfasts, you can make several of these recipes to have them ready to go in the mornings before work.

Pair any of these ideas with some fresh fruit, and you can have a more productive day, and avoid binge eating fast food and vending machine snacks. Furthermore, you just might have more money in your pocket at the end of the week.

I hope you find this article helpful. If you have anything that you’d like to share or any opinions on any of the content on my site, please do speak up. I look forward to your comments, questions and the sharing of ideas.

Note: Thank-you for supporting this website with the purchases you make through the provided affiliate links.
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References:

12 Healthy Breakfast Food Ideas – Quick & Easy, https://www.moneycrashers.com/healthy-breakfast-food-ideas/ (accessed January 11, 2018).

 

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How to Plan and Enjoy a Healthy Diet. Healthy eating is not about strict dietary limitations, staying unrealistically thin, or depriving yourself of the foods you love. Instead, it’s about feeling great, having more energy, improving your health, and stabilizing your mood.

If you feel overwhelmed by all the conflicting nutrition and diet advice out there, you’re not alone.

It seems that for every expert who tells you a particular food is right for you, you’ll find another saying precisely the opposite. But by using these simple tips, you can cut through the confusion and learn how to create a tasty, varied, and nutritious diet that is as good for your mind as it is for your body.

How can healthy eating improve your mood?

We all know that eating right can help you maintain a healthy weight and avoid specific health problems, but your diet can also have a profound effect on your mood and sense of wellbeing. Studies have linked eating a typical Western diet—filled with processed meats, packaged meals, takeout food, and sugary snacks—with higher rates of depression, stress, bipolar disorder, and anxiety.

Eating an unhealthy diet may even play a role in the development of mental health disorders such as ADHD, Alzheimer’s disease, and schizophrenia, or in the increased risk of suicide in young people.

Eating more fresh fruits and vegetables, cooking meals at home, and reducing your intake of sugar and refined carbohydrates, on the other hand, may help to improve mood and lower your risk for mental health issues. If you have already been diagnosed with a mental health problem, eating well can even help to manage your symptoms and regain control of your life.

What constitutes a healthy diet?

Eating a healthy diet doesn’t have to be overly complicated. While some specific foods or nutrients have been shown to have a beneficial effect on mood, it’s your overall dietary pattern that is most important. The cornerstone of a healthy diet pattern should be to replace processed food with real food whenever possible. Eating food that is as close as possible to the way nature made it can make a massive difference to the way you think, look, and feel.

diet
healthy eating pyramid

The Healthy Eating Pyramid

The Harvard Healthy Eating Pyramid represents the latest nutritional science. The most comprehensive part at the bottom is for things that are most important. The foods at the narrow top are those that should be eaten sparingly, if at all. This Healthy Eating Pyramid shows daily exercise and weight control in the most comprehensive, most important category. Fats from healthy sources, such as plants, are in the broader part of the pyramid. Refined carbohydrates, such as white bread and white rice, are in the narrow top. Red meat should also be eaten sparingly, while fish, poultry, and eggs are healthier choices.

Building your healthy diet

While some extreme diets may suggest otherwise, we all need a balance of protein, fat, carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, and minerals in our diets to sustain a healthy body. You don’t need to eliminate specific categories of food from your menu, but instead, select the healthiest options from each group.

Protein

Protein gives us the energy to get up and go—and keep going—while also supporting mood and cognitive function. Too much protein can be harmful to people with kidney disease, but the latest research suggests that many of us need more high-quality protein, especially as we age. That doesn’t mean you have to eat more animal products—a variety of plant-based sources of protein each day can ensure your body gets all the essential protein it needs. Learn more »

Fat

Not all fat is the same. While bad fats can wreck your diet and increase your risk of certain diseases, good fats protect your brain and heart. In fact, healthy fats—such as omega-3s—are vital to your physical and emotional health. Understanding how to include more healthy fat in your diet can help improve your mood, boost your well-being, and even trim your waistline. Learn more »

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are one of your body’s main sources of energy. But most should come from complex, unrefined carbs (vegetables, whole grains, fruit) rather than sugars and refined carbs that have been stripped of all bran, fiber, and nutrients. Cutting back on white bread, pastries, starches, and sugar can prevent rapid spikes in blood sugar, fluctuations in mood and energy, and a build-up of fat, especially around your waistline. Learn more »

Fiber

Eating foods high in dietary fiber (grains, fruit, vegetables, nuts, and beans) can help you stay regular and lower your risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. It can also improve your skin and even help you to lose weight. Depending on your age and gender, nutrition experts recommend you eat at least 21 to 38 grams of fiber each day for optimal health. Unfortunately, most of us aren’t eating even half that amount. Learn more »

Calcium

Your body uses calcium to build healthy bones and teeth, keep them strong as you age, send messages through the nervous system, and regulate the heart’s rhythm. As well as leading to osteoporosis, not getting enough calcium in your diet can also contribute to anxiety, depression, and sleep difficulties. Whatever your age or gender, it’s vital to include calcium-rich foods in your diet, limit those that deplete calcium, and get enough magnesium and vitamins D and K to help calcium do its job. Learn more »

Setting yourself up for success

Switching to a healthy diet doesn’t have to be an all or nothing proposition. You don’t have to be perfect, you don’t have to eliminate foods you enjoy entirely, and you don’t have to change everything all at once—that usually only leads to cheating or giving up on your new eating plan.

To set yourself up for success, think about planning a healthy diet as some small, manageable steps—like adding a salad to your eating once a day—rather than one significant drastic change. As your little changes become a habit, you can continue to add more healthy choices.

Prepare more of your meals.

Cooking more meals at home can help you take charge of what you’re eating and better monitor precisely what goes into your food. You’ll eat fewer calories and avoid the chemical additives, added sugar, and unhealthy fats of packaged and takeout foods that can leave you feeling tired, bloated, and irritable, and exacerbate symptoms of depression, stress, and anxiety.

Make the right changes.

When cutting back on unhealthy foods in your diet, it’s essential to replace them with healthy alternatives. Replacing dangerous trans fats with healthy fats (such as switching fried chicken for grilled salmon) will make a positive difference to your health. Changing animal fats for refined carbohydrates, though (such as changing your breakfast bacon for a donut), won’t lower your risk for heart disease or improve your mood.

Simplify.

Instead of being overly concerned with counting calories, think of your diet regarding color, variety, and freshness. Focus on avoiding packaged and processed foods and opting for more fresh ingredients.

Read the labels.

It’s important to be aware of what’s in your food as manufacturers often hide large amounts of sugar or unhealthy fats in packaged food, even food claiming to be healthy.

Focus on how you feel after eating.

This will help foster healthy new habits and tastes. The healthier the food you eat, the better you’ll feel after a meal. The more junk food you eat, the more likely you are to feel uncomfortable, nauseous, or drained of energy.

Drink plenty of water.

Water helps flush our systems of waste products and toxins, yet many of us go through life dehydrated—causing tiredness, low energy, and headaches. It’s common to mistake thirst for hunger, so staying well hydrated will also help you make healthier food choices.

Moderation: essential to any healthy diet

What is moderation? In essence, it means eating only as much food as your body needs. You should feel satisfied at the end of a meal, but not stuffed. For many of us, moderation means eating less than we do now. But it doesn’t mean eliminating the foods you love. Eating bacon for breakfast once a week, for example, could be considered moderation if you follow it with a healthy lunch and dinner—but not if you follow it with a box of donuts and a sausage pizza.

Try not to think of certain foods as “off-limits.” When you ban certain foods, it’s natural to want those foods more, and then feel like a failure if you give in to temptation. Start by reducing portion sizes of unhealthy foods and not eating them as often. As you reduce your intake of unhealthy foods, you may find yourself craving them less or thinking of them as only occasional indulgences.

Think smaller portions.

Serving sizes have ballooned recently. When dining out, choose a starter instead of an entree, split a dish with a friend, and don’t order supersized anything. At home, visual cues can help with portion sizes. Your serving of meat, fish, or chicken should be the size of a deck of cards, and half a cup of mashed potato, rice, or pasta is about the size of a traditional light bulb.

By serving your meals on smaller plates or in bowls, you can trick your brain into thinking it’s a larger portion. If you don’t feel satisfied at the end of a meal, add more leafy greens or round off the meal with fruit.

Take your time. It actually takes a few minutes for your brain to tell your body that it has had enough food, so eat slowly and stop eating before you feel full.

Eat with others whenever possible. Eating alone, especially in front of the TV or computer, often leads to mindless overeating.

It’s not just what you eat, but when you eat

Eat breakfast, and eat smaller meals throughout the day. A healthy breakfast can jumpstart your metabolism while eating small, healthy meals (rather than the standard three large meals) keeps your energy up all day.

Avoid eating late at night. Try to eat dinner earlier and fast for 14-16 hours until breakfast the next morning. Studies suggest that eating only when you’re most active and giving your digestive system a long break each day may help to regulate weight.

Make fruit and vegetables a tasty part of your diet

Fruit and vegetables are low in calories and nutrient dense, which means they are packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. Focus on eating the recommended daily amount of at least five servings of fruit and vegetables and it will naturally fill you up and help you cut back on unhealthy foods. A serving is half a cup of raw fruit or veg or a small apple or banana, for example. Most of us need to double the amount we currently eat.

To increase your intake:

Add antioxidant-rich berries to your favorite breakfast cereal

Eat a medley of sweet fruit—oranges, mangos, pineapple, grapes—for dessert

Swap your usual rice or pasta side dish for a colorful salad

Instead of eating processed snack foods, snack on vegetables such as carrots, snow peas, or cherry tomatoes along with a spicy hummus dip or peanut butter

How to make vegetables tasty

While plain salads and steamed veggies can quickly become bland, there are plenty of ways to add taste to your vegetable dishes.

Add color. Not only do brighter, deeper colored vegetables contain higher concentrations of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants—but they can vary the flavor and make meals more visually appealing. Add color using fresh or sundried tomatoes, glazed carrots or beets, roasted red cabbage wedges, yellow squash, or sweet, colorful peppers.

Liven up salad greens. Branch out beyond lettuce. Kale, arugula, spinach, mustard greens, broccoli, and Chinese cabbage are all packed with calcium, magnesium, iron, potassium, zinc, and vitamins A, C, E, and K. To add flavor to your salad greens, try drizzling with olive oil, adding a spicy dressing, or sprinkling with almond slices, chickpeas, a little bacon, parmesan, or goat cheese.

Satisfy your sweet tooth. Naturally sweet vegetables—such as carrots, beets, sweet potatoes, yams, onions, bell peppers, and squash—add sweetness to your meals and reduce your cravings for added sugar. Add them to soups, stews, or pasta sauces for a satisfying sweet kick.

Cook green beans, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and asparagus in new ways. Instead of boiling or steaming these healthy sides, try grilling, roasting, or pan frying them with chili flakes, garlic, shallots, mushrooms, or onion. Or marinate in tangy lemon or lime before cooking.

I hope you found this article helpful and as always I look forward to your comments, questions and the sharing of ideas.

Note: Thank-you for supporting this website through purchases you make on the provided affiliate links.
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Resources and references:
Healthy eating and mental health

Healthy Eating – Overview and articles about what constitutes a healthy diet. (Harvard Health Publications)

Healthy Diet: Eating with Mental Health in Mind – Foods to eat and avoid for optimal mental health. (Mental Health America)

Nutritional psychiatry: Your brain on food – How the food you eat affects the way you feel. (Harvard Health Publications)

Mastering the mindful meal – Describes the importance of mindful eating, along with tips on how to eat more mindfully. (Brigham & Women’s Hospital)

Healthy eating: fats

Omega-3 Fats: An Essential Contribution – All about health benefits of the important omega-3 fatty acids, including the best food sources in which to find them. (Harvard School of Public Health)

The Truth About Fats – Understanding what counts as good fats, bad fats, and those in-between. (Harvard Health Publications)

Healthy eating: sugar

How to spot and avoid added sugar – Why sugar is so bad for you and how to spot it hidden in foods such as cereal, pasta sauce, and crackers. (Harvard Health Publications)

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