Monthly Archives: March 2013

Secrets to Weight Loss Success

Oddly enough, losing weight is a lot easier than keeping it off because most of us, while being able to lose weight following the latest fad diet, or trying to lose weight too fast, end up returning to old eating habits. Even worse, most of the time we end up gaining additional weight. The real challenge when it comes to weight loss success is to sustain a healthy lifestyle without the reward of seeing the numbers on the scale steadily drop. You can get past this challenge by learning the secrets to weight loss success which follow.

Acceptance
To sustain weight loss, you’ll need to accept the fact that you need to make a change that includes living a healthy lifestyle that includes eating the right foods and exercising for the long term, making it part of your overall life plan. Some great rewards that can spur long term motivation is lowering your blood pressure, getting off medications, sleeping better, living a life full of energy, and even improve mental clarity. Most important of all, don’t look at your weight loss endeavors as “dieting”, look at them as discovering sensible lifestyle changes that will improve your life in a big way.

Think Low Calorie/Low Fat
Successful weight loss efforts include following a reasonably low fat, low calorie weight loss plan. Portion control and eating foods like soups and vegetables with high water content can help make counting and control calories easier. By limiting the variety of foods you consume you’ll simplify your healthy eating plan and make it much easier to avoid overeating.

Consistency
Whether its weekdays or the holiday’s, people who successfully lost weight followed a consistent routine when it came to eating. This creates a routine, and while there is room for an occasion splurge, a set eating plan is the foundation of weight loss success.

Frequency
A well known but still surprising secret to weight loss success is to eat frequently throughout the day, 4 to 5 times a day which helps avoid the hunger that typically derails weight loss efforts. Eating small, healthy portions throughout the day can lower blood sugar levels and help deal with your appetite. Most important of all is to drink plenty of water which will help beat the hunger blues as well.

Eat Your breakfast
Successful weight loss almost always involves eating breakfast which is essential to get your body revved up and get you ready for your day. Keep in mind we’re talking about a healthy breakfast including choices like a bowl of high fiber cereal with your favorite fruit and skim melt, a tasty smoothie with fiber rich ingredients; you get the idea.

Weigh In
Yes, as much as most of us avoid it, it’s important to hop on the scale regularly, between once a day to once a week, whatever works best for you. Weighing in isn’t so much about living by the scale but to help you keep you track of your eating habits, and adjust for those splurge days we all have once in a while. In other words, don’t focus on the numbers, focus on slow, consistent weight loss, changing your eating habits, and improving your life.

Get Moving
You have to make time to exercise! Exercising will not only help you lose weight faster, it will also improve your mood, tone and tighten, boost energy, fight a number of diseases; basically the health benefits of exercising are endless and you must make it a part of your life.

Along with the secrets to weight loss mentioned above, as you start your weight loss journey it’s important to remember not to beat yourself up about your weight or any slip ups (we all have them). ; Instead, use positive self talk, learn to love yourself and celebrate any accomplishment; guilt never encourages weight loss.

And remember, MagicKitchen.com has portion controlled meals. They can help you lose weight and keep it off, as part of a healthy diet!

Cheryl, MagucKitchen.com blogger

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Ten Guilty Pleasures

That’s right, you can have your cheesecake, eat it, and lose weight too; all you need to do is remember that it’s all about moderation. It’s also about not beating yourself up if you overdo it at lunch, or have one of those weak moments and eat a gallon of ice cream; just get on that treadmill and run it off; does that make sense? Anyway, this article is about the top 10 guilty pleasures you should treat yourself with once in a while, and even some good-for-you options that make you feel a tad bit guilty; they’re just that good!

Here’s something fun, watch this sneak peek of Glee’s Guilty Pleasures episode.

1. Whose mouth doesn’t water at the thought of eating a crispy piece (or 2) of bacon? If bacon is your guilty pleasure on the weekend’s fine, just keep in mind that bacon is loaded with saturated fat and sodium so eat responsibly.

2. Next on the list; French fries, those heavenly tasting, fat loaded guilty pleasures. There’s no point in calling them your “vegetable helping” for the day because the minute they’re deep fried any redeeming value goes away. These fat loaded treats are okay once in a while but get in the habit of ordering small helpings and avoid super sized anything.

3. Everyone’s favorite cookie seems to be chocolate chip (warm with a glass of milk – skim of course) and while eating a couple of cookies isn’t going to blow your diet (unless they’re as big as your head); most of us don’t stop at 1 or 2. These sugar loaded treats are guaranteed to pack on the pounds if you don’t use self control. Instead of baking dozens at home when the mood hits you, buy a couple from a local bakery, feed your craving, and don’t bring any home with you, even if you’re telling yourself they’re for the kids or hubby.

4. You know how it goes; “we all scream for ice cream!” If your guilty pleasures include ice cream (high in saturated fat) go for lighter versions whenever possible (and 1/2 cup) or stop by your favorite ice cream parlor and order a cone of small sundae. Same tip as above here; if it’s not in your home you won’t be tempted to overdo during those late night cravings.

5. Chicken isn’t a bad thing to eat, it can actually be good for you if it’s not covered with salt loaded batter and deep fried; then it turns into bad news when it comes to your blood pressure, and a ton of other health issues. If fried chicken is a guilty pleasure, thoroughly enjoy the moment as you eat it but then get back on track.

6. Pizza is a favorite food for most of us but, yet again, can be full of artery clogging ingredients. The good news is that most pizzeria’s offer “delite” versions now that taste as good as the full fat versions. The lower calorie pizzas usually come on a thin crust and have a lighter amount of toppings on them, but they’re still tasty, and if you top it off with fresh veggies you can treat your body to a healthy serving of veggies as well.

7. Would you still want to treat yourself to cheesecake if it meant no more goodies for the rest of the week? Probably . . . if so that’s okay. You can get creative and whip up some healthy sweet treats during the week like a fresh berry parfait with yogurt, or sugar free chocolate pudding.

8. How about Macaroni and Cheese? This all time favorite guilty pleasure contains a hefty 900 calorie per serving! The good news is you can cut those calories with just a few simple changes. Make your own Mac and Cheese using skim milk and low fat Parmesan and cheddar cheese; delish. For a little more pizzazz add some garlic powder and experiment with some of your favorite spices.

9. Yes you can have mashed potatoes; boy this yummy side dish gets a bad rap! A medium sized potato is a great source of fiber, contains 25% of the recommended amount of vitamin C, and 18% of the suggested daily intake of potassium. It’s only when you load in full fat milk and butter that it turns into a diet crasher. Instead go with skim or 1% milk and a butter substitute with no Trans fats. Or skip the milk and butter and add some lower-salt chicken broth instead, with some green onions or garlic. (Cook a couple of garlic cloves in with the potatoes, and mash them right in).

10. Now for the top guilty pleasure . . . Chocolate! Chocolate is A-Okay; just don’t eat the entire box (more importantly – don’t buy a box of chocolates!). Instead, treat yourself to a couple of pieces of your favorite chocolate and savor every creamy bite. Chocolate actually has several health benefits but that doesn’t mean you should eat a ton of it.

Bottom line, you can enjoy your guilty pleasures, just indulge yourself in your favorites once in a while and don’t blindly eat something just because it’s there. If you don’t have a sweet tooth (yeah right!), don’t eat dessert just because it’s there; make the calories worth every delicious bite.

Cheryl, MagicKitchen.com blogger

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Too Busy To Eat Healthy?

Here are ten ways to eat healthy even when you’re too busy to cook.

  1. MagicKitchen.com healthy mealsAs always, MagicKitchen.com has healthy meals that will wait in your freezer until you’re ready to eat them. Made with top-quality fresh produce and ingredients, all made here in the USA, and so easy to prepare. Perfect for busy people like working parent, people who work long hours, or students.
  2. Here’s an easy breakfast idea: hard boil some eggs the night before. It only take ten minutes, and eggs are healthy! Then eat them the next day with salt and pepper and an apple, along with a piece of toast.
  3. Another breakfast idea: Wrap a tortilla around that egg (slice the egg first or you’ll have egg rolling around in your car). Add a slice of lean ham, some lettuce and brush on a little bottled  salsa or hot sauce.
  4. Snacks- rather than grabbing a bag of chips, keep grapes, celery sticks, cherry tomatoes and almonds with you. You’ll have something healthy to snack on all day!
  5. A favorite trick of mine when I’m stretched for time is to steam whatever veggies are around- small potatoes, baby carrots, asparagus, then poach or fry an egg and when it’s done, put it on top of the veggies. Add salt and pepper, then break the yolk and mix it all together. Yum!
  6. Keep easy meals on hand-  cans of beans, microwaveable rice,  frozen veggies, and that old standby peanut butter. I also like to keep Thai Red Curry paste in the fridge. Add a smidge to chicken bouillon and add a little cornstarch for a quick, flavorful and spicy sauce!
  7. If you find it impossible to avoid a fast-food place, keep it down to once a week. Make a list of the healthier options from the fast food outlets closest to you, and keep it with you. Only eat until you’re full and ignore the portion size. Restaurants
  8. Grocery shop in off hours, when things aren’t so busy. Heck, you’re up anyway, right?
  9. One word: tuna. Get a can of tuna and empty it into a bowl of salad greens, cucumber, celery and tomatoes. Add a bit of low-cal salad dressing and mix it up.
  10. Cook in quantity. When you do have a little spare time, make a huge chili, spaghetti sauce, or pot roast. Then freeze the leftovers in well-labelled containers for future lunches and suppers.

Bon appetit! With these ten tips, you should be on the road to eating healthy again!

Melody, MagicKitchen.com blogger

 

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Meal Programs

Hi, all, I just wanted to write again about MagicKitchen.com Meal Programs (or meal plans). This is where you get a bunch of meals every week or two, without having to come on the site and order. It’s so great for seniors, and also for children of seniors who want to help their parents out. Older people get tired of cooking, and often get tired of eating too. I remember being shocked at how thin my mother had gotten on one of my visits; maybe you’ve had that experience too.

The process is easy, first you call in to our toll-free number and talk to one of our friendly staff. You order a few meals, try them out and see how you like the food. Then we’ll follow up to see if you want to get a meal plan going. In the initial discussion we’ve made a list of foods you (or the person you’re buying for) don’t like or can’t eat.

We figure out how many meals you want a week and how often to send them. We take your payment information. And that’s it. Meals start to arrive, and you only have to contact us if you want a change or want to stop for a while or forever. With meal plans, delivery is free.

Here are some key points:

  • Guaranteed Satisfaction
  • Personalized Meals
  • No contracts, No commitments
  • Free Delivery
  • Start and stop anytime with no penalties.

We’re proud of our program, the most flexible in the business. So whether you’re interested in our HomeStyle meals or would like full meals; whether you have diabetes or would like to lose weight; whether you’re a senior with a small appetite or an athlete with a need for carbs, we have you covered. Give us a call, 877-516-2442.

 

Melody, MagicKitchen.com blogger

 

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Baby Showers, Bridal Showers and Weddings, Oh My!

Suddenly your mailbox is full of invitations to baby showers, bridal showers and weddings and housewarming parties and you think, “what am I gonna do? There are so many gifts to buy!” Here are the top 5 reasons why getting home delivered meals from MagicKitchen.com will make the perfect gift for any occasion.

  1. Regular eating goes out the door when you bring a new baby home. Why not send a Bundle of food to make sure that the new parents aren’t completely exhausted and under-fed!
  2. When moving into a new place, everything in the house is upside-down and likely the meal of choice will be pizza or takeout. Sending our Family Sized Mama’s Beef Lasagna will be a comforting, HomeStyle meal that is in an out of the oven in no time.
  3. Do you know a bride or two that just can’t cook? Is she just overwhelmed by thought of cooking dinner for her new hubby? Help her out a bit and give her a Gift Certificate for frozen prepared meals so she can have a fully cooked meal that she can just re-heat! Take the guess work, prep work and clean-up out of her meal planning.
  4. These days, there are two people in a household who work full time. Getting meals on the table for the whole family or just themselves can be challenging. Adding some entrees or sides to the freezer will help supplement cooking to help take a little bit of the load off.
  5. Whether people are getting married, having children or just celebrating for any reason, a gift of food is always a great way to say congratulations!

 

Mariel, MagicKitchen.com blogger

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