Eat Well and Lose Weight

Eat Well and Lose Weight

Shedding those extra pounds will require some commitment, but weight loss doesn’t have to be a harrowing endeavor. In fact, eating for weight loss can be as satisfying for your stomach and taste buds as it is for your self-image, if you start off on the right foot. Instead of committing to fat-free, flavorless foods to reach your goals, experiment with flavor and pay close attention to portions and hidden calories. Try some tasty and healthy recipes that will help you achieve a slender figure and a healthier lifestyle.

Control Your Weight

Food portions have increased quite a bit over the years; in some cases, they’ve even doubled! Too much food at one time will bring too many calories, so concentrate on smaller yet satisfying meals. One way to fulfill your caloric needs and taste expectations is to combine flavors and textures for variety; try these stuffed peppers, which are naturally perfectly portioned and can be modified in hundreds of ways.

Stuffed Peppers with Quinoa and Currants: Sauté ¼ lb. of ground turkey and one diced onion in one teaspoon of olive oil until cooked through. Add two cloves of minced garlic and cook until fragrant, then add a handful of dried currants and pour in ¼ cup of chicken or vegetable broth and simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated. Stir 1 cup of cooked quinoa into the mixture and add 1 teaspoon each of fresh chopped parsley, thyme and basil.

Cut each green or red pepper in half lengthwise and take out the pith and seeds. Spoon mixture into each pepper half and bake in a 350 F oven for 30 minutes or until mixture is golden. If you’d like, sprinkle a bit of low-fat mozzarella, Swiss or cheddar cheese and return to the oven to melt the cheese. One of these pepper halves has a good variety of tasty and healthy ingredients, and the portion size makes it a perfect snack; add a leafy green salad with light vinaigrette for a satisfying meal.

Another approach to weight loss diets is to choose foods that will give your metabolism a kick-start — high-fiber dishes, spicy ingredients and certain herbs are known for their fat-burning potential. While some sauces simply add calories, the green tea and jalapeño in this spicy lemon sauce bring antioxidants and metabolism boosters to any lean protein or side dish.

Spicy Green Tea and Lemon Sauce: Begin with ½ cup of brewed green tea — the stronger the tea, the better for your health. Add a tablespoon each of honey, lemon juice and canola oil, adjusting each to your own taste. Mince two cloves of garlic and one medium jalapeño pepper and add to liquid mixture along with salt and pepper to taste and a handful of fresh herbs — basil, thyme, parsley and tarragon are all good choices, so go with what you like best or a combination of flavors. Throw all ingredients into a food processor and pulse until well mixed, then use as a dip or topping for fresh steamed vegetables, brown rice and grilled chicken breast.

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