Wednesday, February 1, 2006

The Valentine's Day Diet

t wouldn’t be an official Valentine’s Day without a wee bit of indulgence. Have treats in healthful moderation and beware of some common high-calorie, high-fat culprits. Satisfy your sweet tooth by choosing the best of the best…rich, gourmet dark chocolate (70% cocoa or more) or a luscious chocolate-dipped strawberry. A little bit of the good stuff will go a long way!

Cupid’s Delightfully Low-Cal Picks STOP in the Name of Love!!! (i.e. avoid these)
  • Dark chocolate-dipped strawberry (1) = 48 calories, 2g fat
  • Hershey’s dark chocolate kisses (2) = 50 calories, 2g fat
  • 2-3 squares 70% dark chocolate (Dagoba, Green & Black’s,
    Plantation) = 70 calories, 3-4g fat
  • Chocolate fudge (1 piece, .6oz) = 70 calories, 1.8g fat
  • Godiva Amaretto Truffle (1) = 110 calories, 6.5g fat
  • 1 cup berries + 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar = 74 calories, 0g fat
  • ¾ cup berries + 3 Tbsp Lite Cool Whip = 80 calories, 1g fat
  • Chocolate martini (1) = 438 calories, 20g fat
  • Lindt milk chocolate truffle w. smooth filling (1) = 239
    calories, 19g fat
  • Mini chocolate ├ęclair (1) = 293 calories, 17.6g fat
  • Flourless chocolate cake (1 piece) = 440 calories, 34g fat
  • Chocolate mousse (1 serving) = 380 calories, 15g fat
  • Chocolate molten cake w. vanilla ice cream (1 piece, from a nation-wide restaurant chain) = 1270 calories, 62g fat!!!

Skin Deep Nutrition: Eating for that Gorgeous ‘Winter Glow’

As wonderful as ski season and snowflakes are, winter can unfortunately wreck havoc on our delicate skin – chapped lips, dry, cracked hands and feet. But with the help of nourishing, antioxidant-packed fruits, vegetables and “healthy” fats, we can moisturize and replenish our skin and provide bodies with health-promoting nutrients. Incorporate the foods we’ve listed below into your daily diet and you’ll have that gorgeous ‘glow’ back in no time.

Fabulous Fresh Fruit

  • Berries: Blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries are rich in flavonoids, a type of antioxidants that help delay the aging process and strengthen collagen in the skin. Berries are also high in vitamin C, which helps maintain capillary walls & promote skin elasticity & plumpness.
  • Kiwi: Kiwis are high in vitamin C and antioxidants to promote skin elasticity and smoothness.
  • Mango: Mangoes are high in vitamin A, C, & E and rich in antioxidants. Eat them moderation however, as mangoes are high in calories and sugar!
  • Citrus fruit: Grapefruit, oranges, lemons and limes all help cleanse our digestive systems and clear the skin. Citrus fruits also boast a wealth of vitamin C.

Eat Your Veggies

  • Broccoli: A nutrient-rich cruciferous vegetable, broccoli is high in fiber, iron, antioxidants, folate and vitamins A, C and B2 – all of which promote healthy skin, hair and nails and prevent premature signs of aging. Broccoli also helps stimulate the digestive system, liver and kidneys to remove toxins internally, encouraging the external effect of beautiful, smooth skin.
  • Beets: Beets are pack powerful antioxidants, flavonoids, and aid in stimulating the digestive system and immune function. Their benefits shine through from the inside-out by reviving dull skin and promoting renewal and repair.

Healthy Fats

  • Salmon, tuna, flaxseed, avocado, walnuts, and olive oil: ‘Healthy’ fats, such as the omega-3 fatty acids found in the items above, help reduce inflammation and lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. Such fats provide skin cells with nourishing moisture and oil to help prevent wrinkles and dryness. Healthy as they are, these fats still are high in calories so you’ll want to watch the amount you’re consuming – keep these serving sizes in mind: 3-4oz salmon & tuna (size of a deck of cards), 1/5 an avocado (2-3 thin slices), ¼ cup walnuts, 1-2 tablespoons olive oil per meal.

A Day’s Menu of Healthy Eating for Beautiful Skin

Breakfast: ½ grapefruit + 1 cup high-fiber cereal w. 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed meal, ½ cup fresh berries & skim milk
Mid-Morning Snack: low-fat plain, Greek yogurt w. diced mango and kiwi
Lunch: Seared salmon and arugula salad w. roasted beets and balsamic vinaigrette + 2 high-fiber crackers
Afternoon Snack: ¼ cup walnuts (10-12 havles) OR 8 oz. of a blueberry, raspberry & banana smoothie w. skim or non-fat soy milk & 1 teaspoon honey
Dinner: Grilled tuna w. pomegranate & avocado salsa & steamed broccoli