10 Healthier Drive-thru Meals

kids and linchElle Penner, M.P.H., R.D., the Registered Dietitian and Food & Nutrition Editor at MyFitnesssPal, as well as an active runner and food-enthusiast recently shared this great information in the Hello Healthy newsletter.

Unexpected hunger pangs happen to the best of us, and they seem to hit at the most inconvenient of times–like when you’re out running errands or miles from anywhere on a long road trip. Having healthy, travel-friendly snacks on hand can certainly diminish the dazzle of the drive-thru in these situations–but let’s be honest. Eating on the fly is sometimes unavoidable, even for the most prepared.

Thankfully, fast food restaurants are realizing not everyone wants to eat unhealthy while on the go, and today many popular chains offer healthier options for nutrition-conscious consumers. If you’ve ever made the mistake of ordering a 1,000 calorie salad though, you know some of those seemingly healthy choices aren’t actually healthy at all.

To help you navigate your way through the drive-thru, here are 10 healthier meals to consider ordering the next time hunger strikes while you’re on the road:


*Starbuck’s Spinach and Feta Breakfast Wrap
Calories: 290; Total Fat: 10g; Saturated Fat: 3.5g; Cholesterol: 20mg; Sodium: 830mg; Carbohydrates: 33g; Fiber: 6g, Sugar: 4g; Protein: 19g

Panera Bread’s Power Breakfast Egg Bowl with Steak
Calories: 270; Total Fat: 17g; Sodium: 440mg; Carbohydrates: 3g; Fiber: 3g, Protein: 24g

McDonalds Fruit & Yogurt Parfait
Calories: 150; Total Fat: 2g; Saturated Fat: 1g; Cholesterol: 5mg; Sodium: 80mg; Carbohydrates: 30g; Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 23g; Protein: 4g

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The Secret to Resisting Temptation

turkeyAnna Lukits  shared in the November 25, 2014 Wall Street Journal  that People Who Excel at Resisting Temptation Deliberately Avoid Tempting Situations.

Lukis found that people who excel at resisting temptation might have a secret strategy: They deliberately avoid situations in which their self-control might fail, says a study in the February issue of Personality and Individual Differences.

Highly disciplined individuals often make decisions that minimize their exposure to temptations and distractions, the study suggests.

Effective self-control has been linked to happiness and success in life while failures of self-control can have costly consequences, researchers said. The latest study suggests people with good self-control may use so-called proactive avoidance to avoid resisting temptation.

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Rethink Your Drink

juice-1By April Irvine, Dietetic Student, Master’s of Science Nutrition and Wellness
Visit my blog @ http://recipe4ahealthylife.wordpress.com/
View my linkedIn @ www.linkedin.com/in/aprilirvine/

How Much Added Sugar Are You Drinking?

4 grams sugar = 1 teaspoon

1 serving or 1 bottle of this drink has almost 5 tsp. of sugar

19/4 = 4.75 teaspoons of sugar!

The American Heart Association recommends limiting sugar to no more than 6 teaspoons per day for adult women and 9 teaspoons per day for adult men. To put this into perspective: the average 20-ounce soda has 16 teaspoons of sugar, a Tall/small (12 ounce) Caramel Machiatto from Starbucks has 23 grams or nearly 6 teaspoons of sugar.

Too much sugar isn’t so sweet for your health

Many people eat more sugar than they realize. It is important to be aware of how much added sugar we are eating because it may have adverse health effects. Scientific evidence supports that added sugars is associated with obesity and cardiovascular disease mortality. Little exercise may exacerbate the problem. This can eventually lead to chronic disease such as heart disease and diabetes. Making small simple lifestyle changes can really go a long way.

Try these healthy beverage choices instead:

  • Stock your refrigerator with fresh cold water, sugar-free tea, low-fat skim milk.
  • Do you get bored with water? Infuse it with fresh fruit, such as lemons, berries, or cucumbers
  • Add a splash of 100% fruit juice to sparkling water for a special treat
  • Keep healthy beverages within reach for children

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Healthy Eating Tips

myplateBy April Irvine, Dietetic Student, Master’s of Science Nutrition and Wellness
Visit my blog @ http://recipe4ahealthylife.wordpress.com/
View my linkedIn @ www.linkedin.com/in/aprilirvine/

I am all about making small and easy changes to your everyday life that can make a huge impact on your overall health and wellness. Here are some tips that I have personally seen to be successful but also evidence-based research has shown that these lifestyle changes can improve your health.

  • Make half your plate fruits and vegetables – vary your veggies, eat the rainbow so you get all the phytochemicals, vitamins and minerals that your body needs.
  • Any starch or grains that you eat, make at least half of it whole wheat
  • Eat calcium rich foods such as low-fat or skim milk, low-fat yogurt, and low-fat cheese
  • Eat lean sources of protein such as chicken with the skin removed, 90%> lean beef, or even try tofu or beans.

Empty calories are foods that contain no nutritional value i.e. no vitamins or minerals. Examples of these types of foods are soda, processed foods, cakes, cookies, and pastries. It’s not necessary to restrict yourself completely; you can treat yourself once in a while.

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How to Reduce Anxieties and Increase Motivation


The Glenbard Parent Series:  (GPS) Navigating Healthy Families presents: “Choke:Performing At Your Best Under Stress-How to Reduce Anxieties and Increase Motivation”, with Sian  Beilock Ph.D at 7p.m.Thursday, Dec 4 in the auditorium at Glenbard South High School 23W200 Butterfield Rd. in Glen Ellyn.

It happens to all of us. You’ve prepared for the big day but when the big moment arrives, nothing seems to work. It’s not fun to think about, but now there’s good news: This doesn’t’t have to happen.

Dr. Sian Beilock, an expert on performance and brain science, reveals new discoveries of why people so often “choke” under pressure when the stakes are very high.

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Get smart about antibiotics Nov. 17 – 23

3495411871-1Infections caused by resistant bacteria have become more common, and many bacteria have become resistant to multiple antibiotics. In fact, each year more than two million people in the United States get infections that are resistant to antibiotics and at least 23,000 people die as a result.

The DuPage County Health Department is joining public health partners across the United States to encourage everyone during Get Smart About Antibiotics Week (Nov. 17-23) to be more aware of antibiotic resistance and the importance of appropriate antibiotic prescribing.

Here is what is known:

  • Antibiotic resistance is one of the world’s most pressing public health threats.
  • Antibiotics are the most important tool we have to combat lifethreatening bacterial diseases, but antibiotics can have side effects.
  • Antibiotic overuse increases the development of drug-resistant germs.
  • Antibiotics can cure bacterial infections, not viral infections. Treating viruses with antibiotics does not work, and it increases the likelihood that you will become ill with an antibiotic-resistant bacterial infection.
  • Patients, healthcare providers, hospital administrators, and policy makers must work together to employ effective strategies for improving antibiotic use – ultimately improving medical care and saving lives.

Here is what you can do:

  • Take the antibiotic exactly as the doctor prescribes. Never skip doses or stop taking an antibiotic early unless your doctor tells you to do so.
  • Only take antibiotics prescribed for you; do not share or use leftover antibiotics. Antibiotics treat specific types of infections. Taking the wrong medicine may delay correct treatment and allow bacteria to multiply.
  • Do not save antibiotics for the next illness. Discard any leftover medication once the prescribed course of treatment is completed.
  •  Prevent infections by practicing good hand hygiene and getting recommended vaccines.
  • Do not ask for antibiotics when your doctor thinks you do not need them. Remember antibiotics have side effects. When your doctor says you don’t need an antibiotic, taking one may do more harm than good.

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Breakfast Cookies

sun-clipart.1-wt3ukb“Myfitnesspal” shared that you can you enjoy cookies with no sugar and none of the artificial stuff! Skinnytaste’s recipe for chewy chocolate chip breakfast cookies whips together just 3 simple ingredients: ripe bananas, wholesome oats and chocolate chips! You can make a batch of these the night before and watch them disappear at the breakfast table. If you’re not into chocolate chips try subbing in toasted coconut, dried cranberries, raisins and/or almond bits.

Skinnytaste Cookbook ImageGina Homolka is the founder of Skinnytaste.com, the award-winning blog that’s been featured on Fitness, Better Homes and Gardens, Glamour.com, and FineCooking.com, among other media outlets. She lives on Long Island with her husband and their two children. Look for Gina’s new cookbook, The Skinnytaste Cookbook: Light on Calories, Big on Flavor on sale September 30, 2014.


Lunches packed at home are generally not as nutritious as school lunches

unhealthy lbThe Daily Herald also shared this information on November 17, 2014:

Researchers compared more than 750 school meals with more than 560 packed meals given to pre-K and kindergarten students in three schools, analyzing them for nutritional value over five days, CBS News reports.

“We found that packed lunches were of less nutritional quality than school lunches,” said lead researcher Alisha Farris, a Ph.D. candidate at Virginia Tech University.

The packed lunches had more fat, and included more desserts and sugary drinks than the school lunches did, the researchers found.

“There was a spectrum,” Farris said. “There were some really healthy packed lunches. But overall, they were pretty unhealthy.”

The study is published in the November-December issue of the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior.

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