- Chicken breast – Regular and thin sliced, skinless. Tip; Cook extra at night and take to work next day.
- Cereals – best choice, Oatmeal, Quaker® old fashioned, cooks in 3-4 minutes in microwave (not quick oats, which cooks in one minute), Cheerios® or other whole grain with 3 grams or more of fiber & less than 10 grams of sugar.
- Eggs – Egg Beaters® or other egg white food. They are real egg whites, not fake. Or separate your own egg whites. Tip; make an omelet with 1 whole egg and 3 egg whites!
- Cheese – Alpine Lace® Swiss. It is the lowest in sodium, plus low fat.
- Bread – Whole wheat or oatmeal. Such as Dave’s® thin sliced, Vermont Bread® multi grain. All are lower in carbohydrates, fat, and sodium & have more fiber. Look for 100% stone ground, and sprouted wheat. Best choice is Ezekiel 4.9® Sesame has zero preservatives so keep in freezer! Tip; minimize all bread when trying to lose weight.
- Meal replacement/protein drinks – ready to drink in lite or regular. Complete nutrition in a convenient package. Just add a fruit for a complete meal on the go! Protein powder; whey or vegetable based can be helpful with muscle recovery when exercising regularly. Garden of Life®-Raw Organic with or without greens is excellent!
- White fish – Cod, Haddock, Flounder, Salmon, Halibut and Tuna grilled or baked not deep fried!
- Vegetables – best choices are lots of green beans, broccoli, spinach and asparagus.
- Potatoes – Sweet potatoes & yams. Your first choice should be sweet potato or yams, which have a lower glycemic index and will burn in your body slower. Followed by New or Yukon Gold potatoes (try to pick out small to medium size potatoes). Tip; packs great for work, microwaves 4-6 minutes.
- Rice – Brown or wild/brown. For convenience, pre-cooked in freezer bags are great, available at Trader Joes and many other supermarkets. Never use the instant versions.
- Deli turkey breast – this is a convenience food; try to use regular chicken/turkey breast when possible. Look for lower-salt versions. Tip; always try to find brands that are all natural with no nitrates added if possible.
- Condiments – ketchup by Organic Ville® sweetened with agave nectar. Lemon juice, Pepper white, black or red, garlic powder, McCormick® Salt-Free All Purpose Seasonings, and many other spices such as basil and rosemary, oregano. Butter Buds® great on vegetables, potatoes, chicken and many other foods. Include Turmeric and Cinnamon for their amazing antioxidant properties. Tip; Take a set of your favorite condiments to work.
- Balsamic vinegar & oils – olive, safflower and sesame seed oil to use for salad dressing. Limit oil to one or two teaspoons. Tip; many other salad dressing can sabotage an otherwise healthy salad, beware!
- Lean steak – limit to once a week while trying to lose weight, 4-6 ounce portion maximum.
- Snacks – watch out, limit serving sizes and types. Try no-salt added, small pretzels, popsicles, fudgsicles or small protein bars, raw carrots or other vegetables, dip in good quality Greek low fat yogurt, enjoy!
- A quality multi vitamin – such as Alive® Brand Multi Orchard Fruits & Garden Veggies (gummies have come a long way and are fun to take!). Also, take a fish oil capsule best brand is Nordic Naturals® with Co-Q10 added. Take 1-2 per day, preferably with 4-8 hour in between. Also a more potent option is TwinLab® daily one caps.
- Breadcrumbs – 4C® brand seasoned (salt-free). Great on fish, or chicken.
- Cooking spray – and a non-stick pan or Ghee, a form of clarified butter… use sparingly (1-2 teaspoons max).
- Yogurt – Plain, vanilla, or lime, preferably low or no-fat Greek. Look for lower sugar content.
- Fruit – Apples, small bananas, & oranges. Fresh or frozen raspberries & blueberries, add to cereals and blender drinks. Tip; Limit to one per day when trying to lose body fat. You can have more when you reach your maintenance weight!
- Sweeteners – best choices are Truvia® made from the natural leaf of a stevia plant. Both have a much lower glycemic index than sugar and will not cause a sudden spike in blood sugar levels. NutraSweet®/aspartame or Splenda®, limit or avoid if possible.
- Soymilk or Almond milk – comes in regular or vanilla. Look for lite versions they’re great, try it!
Read all labels. Watch for high fat and salt content. Avoid highly processed foods. Don’t be fooled by a “low fat” label. Watch out for unrealistic serving sizes, they quickly add up. Tip; Many unhealthy processed grains and cereals have less than 3 grams of fiber per serving.
Other handy items and more…
Ninja Auto IQ® – a mid-size blender that’s allows you to make drinks in the same container you drink from. Also works great for chopping foods for cooking.
Roasting – some time ago I started roasting many items in my convection oven. Just make sure to select the convection-bake or roast setting. Then put you chicken, beef, fish or vegetables on a drip pan with a raised grid underneath. This allows food to roast 360 degrees using the ovens fan to swirl air all-around your food. No need to ever turn your food and it comes out nicely charred and moist in the middle, try it!
Some of my favorite products…
Power Crunch Pronto Whey® protein powder, great taste and quality, available in vanilla & chocolate.
Garden of Life® Raw protein powder with or without greens added.
Perky Turkey Jerky®, lower in sodium and contains no preservatives/nitrites and taste great!
Agave nectar, a liquid from the Agave plant, known for its low glycemic index that burns much slower the sugar!
Yogurt Trader Joes, Icelandic non-fat plain yogurt. Hint; add a tea spoon of Agave nectar or Truvia sweetener.
Yogurt, Soggis® Greek style vanilla non-fat or low fat, is also lower in sugar than most.
Ronzoni® Garden Delight line of tri color pasta. Yes, you can eat pasta just watch the serving size!
Fine chocolate made with 50-70% cocoa. Yes, you can eat chocolate, again in a small servings eaten mindfully!
Bionaturae® Organic strained tomatoes for making tomato sauce. Check out the simple recipe on the back panel.
Ghee Butter, AKA-clarified butter by 4th & Heart Company try the version with Himalayan pink salt.
Personal care and skin care items –
Tooth Paste, Tom’s® Whole Care, a great alternative to other tooth paste that may contain questionable ingredients! Deodorant, Kiss My Face® Liquid Rock, contains no aluminum chlorohydrate parabens that may bother some people.
Lubriderm®, Men’s 3-in-1 moisturizer lotion, and aftershave.
Neutrogena® Hydro Boost Water Gel an expellant facial moisturizer for men and women at just under $20.00!
M-61® Face Blast a quick skin-brightener and exfoliate.
Harry’s® razors www.harrys.com very good shave at half the price of the major brand. Or try Gillette Fusion Pro-glide.
Lastly get a profession facial at least twice per year, yes men too!
A word about quality sleep – If you are having trouble sleeping it most likely layers of stress building up thought the day. Think of those layers as plates on top of your brain/nervous system…some may be light as a pancakes other like steel plates and still others like heavy lead plates! Learn to practice “catch and release”… That’s right, learn to release those stresses and learn to laugh them off!
Try the digital download sleep program by Doctor Gregg Jacobs at https://www.cbtforinsomnia.com/
Meditation and Restorative Yoga classes can act as an excellent antidote for stress. I am trained in many forms of meditation; however I have found Transcendental Meditation, TM to be superior program. Visit http://www.tm.org/transcendental-meditation for info and to find a TM center near you. TM is a worldwide no-profit organization!
However if it is not stress, it can be caused by you food intake and or being overweight… Some foods to avoid; obviously caffeine it can be hidden in many foods, hidden sources include, soda 35-60MG, Excedrin pain relief (65 MG) energy sports drinks (up to 200MG) and for reference a mid-sized cup of coffee contains 80-100MG.
Avoid all video screens for 2-3 hours before bed, leave your cell phone in the kitchen. If you must use your iPad/iPhone set it to “night shift” mode, an Apple® setting which changes the screen from a sleep disturbing blue light to a more soothing amber light. Spicy foods, they can cause acid indigestion or stomach discomfort.
Some foods to enhance sleep, try Organic Nightly Night® Valerian tea and or Yogi® soothing Caramel Bedtime tea or good old fusion warm milk drinker slow and mindfully!
Melatonin, no more than 1-3 grams before bed and or Valerian root capsules 200-400MG ½ to 1 hour before bed.
Sore & Tired
®-Magnesium Sulfate ointment, the first magnesium bases cream that great for sore muscles and joints. Just massage it in for relief from pain.
Remember the opposite of mindful eating is…you guessed it, mindless eating!
By Paul Maduri, President and CEO of Fitness Unlimited Milton, MA
*Always consult a medical or health care professional before beginning an exercise, nutritional or supplement program.