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Tag Archives: healthy fats

8 Minute Abs

24 Jul

Are you ready for the challenge? This is my go-to after a quick run when I don’t want to go to the gym for strength. Abdominal muscles are such a key group in your body that are important for so many reasons when living an active life.

No stopping, no breaks, eight complete minutes of constant work for those abdominal muscles! Challenge yourself. I am always sore after doing this :)

What is your favorite muscle group to work??

Facts and Tips about abdominal muscles below.

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Ab Facts
1) You don’t need to train them every day: you will actually overwork them. Think of them as any other muscle group, they need rest days
2) Doing ab specific exercises alone will not tone your stomach. To reveal chiseled abs, you need to train all your major muscle groups, do cardio, and follow a healthy diet.
3) If your abs are the star of the show, think of your lower back as the supporting cast. Strong lower back muscles allow to to safely complete intense ab workouts without injury
4) Skip the ab equipment on infomercials: the most effective ab-targeted moves are actually ones done at home with no equipment (see above workout).
5) Don’t let those abdominals be overlooked: those with a high percent stomach fat are more likely to develop osteoporosis
6) Last and most importantly, diet rules over any exercise: there is no workout that can help a bad diet. Eating healthy monounsaturated fatty acids like avocados, nuts and olive oil are known to actually help prevent weight gain in your belly. Fat is your friend, no foe :) (look here and here for some great healthy fat recipes!)

Source: http://www.fitbie.com
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PB2 has Added Sugar?!

22 May

Sugar Detox:Day 3

I’m feeling great! Once again, sitting in a 4 hour organic chemistry class without gum is harsh for me, but other than that, fruit has been enough to satisfy that sweet tooth! One finding from yesterday..

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You know that so loved PB2 peanut flour that tastes so great?! Well now I know why. It has added sugar!! Why does everything have to have added sugar to it? I would not have used as much of this as I have in the past if I had known. Thankfully I realized this before I ruined my sugar detox!

Another bad thing about pb2: It has had almost all the fat taken out, so that it is so much “lower in fat and calories”. But isn’t the reason we eat nut butters is to get in some healthy fat. I think so. And now, with this, that isn’t true.

The Truth about PB2 in detail can be found here!

I’ve learned it’s all about moderation. Moderation in eating the food. Not Modifying the food to make it “healthier” so we can eat mass amounts of it! There is such an over eating epidemic in the world today. By the way, things that are “low in fat” have usually had that fat replaced with sugar, so they truly are healthier for you!

There is a peanut flour in which is truly just peanut flour, and no sugar added. Like I said, it still doesn’t have those healthy fats, but I will probably purchase some for minimal use. My main source of nuts will definitely be coming from real, full fat, yet raw nut butters I make at home:) That’s truly healthy! This genetically modified, sugar free, low fat stuff is not truly “healthy”. Low in calories unfortunately does not mean healthy, just like high in calories does not mean unhealthy! There is such a misconception of what healthy is today, and it has led to obesity and eating disorders of all kinds unfortunately.

What to take away from this? Reevaluate what you coin as healthy and not healthy. And check your products labels, they might just surprise you! Fats are good for you, in moderation and of the right type :)

Making Your Own Nut Butter

15 Apr

I’ve posted before about specific recipes for different flavors of nut butters I’ve made, but I’ve gotten a lot of questions as to how to even go about making homemade nut butter!

So I’ve decided to dedicate today to showing you all the steps in making it:) It seems appropriate since just yesterday I made a huge container of fresh, homemade almond butter. It was heavenly. There is just something about the homemade stuff. Something that tastes so much better than the store bought butters!

And guess what? Not only is it easier, just requiring whatever nuts you desire plus the food processor, but also very healthy without all the extra added oils and sugars, and cheaper than store bought!

Yesterday, I even took it a step further and split it up into two containers, making a chocolate caramel almond butter, and a coconut vanilla one. Talk about delicious creations. I was eating it by the spoonful!

But first, let me take you step by step as to how to make it!

Step 1: Toast almonds (or whatever nut you are using) in oven on broil, watching very closely until they are slightly browned. I emphasize watching closely, because I have burnt many batches of good nuts myself by taking my eyes off of them for just a quick minute!

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Step 2: Place toasted nuts into food processor.

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Step 3: Turn food processor on, and let those babies grind and grind and grind!

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First it’ll just look like chopped nuts, like above. Then, it’ll become finely processed like an almond flour type consistency.

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After a couple more minutes of food processing, it’ll finally begin to look like butter! You may have to stop a couple times to scrape down the butter from the sides, and then proceed to process again.

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Finally, you will be done! And you will have an excellent, creamy, homemade butter!

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This is when you can get creative and add in your own flavors of liking:) I split my batch up this time, and put a tablespoon of cocoa powder and a teaspoon of caramel extract.

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And the other half, I put vanilla and coconut extract in, with just a little bit of unsweetened shredded coconut! So delicious:)

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Hope you can now go and make your very own nut butter!:)

Homemade Maple Walnut Butter

11 Mar

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Is it just me or is any kind of nut butter absolutely amazing and addicting? They make every kind of variation nowadays! Creamy peanut butter. crunchy peanut butter. creamy almond butter. crunchy almond butter. coconut butter. chocolate peanut butter. pb2. hazelnut nut butter. You name it, and you can usually find it at least somewhere online or in stores! But what I haven’t seen much of is other kinds of nuts being made into butter. I mean, I know it exists, but peanut and almond butters are definitely the most frequent. So, when I got to go home this past week, and opened up the pantry to huge containers of raw almonds, walnuts, and pecans..a great idea came to me. Walnut butter.

And so my kitchen fun began :) I took out my food processor, toasted some walnuts, and made what I think could possibly be considered a little taste of heaven in my mouth! I went through the whole batch in just the one week I was home! So much richer tasting then almond butter, but oh so good.

Then I got an even more brilliant idea. One of my favorite flavors when eating those chocolates from the box has always been maple walnut. So what did I do? Add a touch of maple syrup and bam! This was definitely a little spoonful of heaven :) Hope you think the same as you try it!

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Maple Walnut Butter
-2 cups walnuts, raw
-2 T maple syrup
-touch of salt

Directions: Toast walnuts in oven (or toaster oven) on 350 degrees until slightly browned. Watch closely, as once they start browning, they burn easily! Then remove from oven, and place in food processor. This will take some time, this step may start to seem tedious, but be patient, I promise it’s worth it! Turn the processor on, and let it begin to grind the nuts. First the nuts will turn into little chopped pieces, then begin to look like powder, then finally begin to clump up. Just keep processing. It will start to run up the sides of the processor, and you will have to turn it off and scrape the butter down from the sides many times. (like I said, patience is key) :) Altogether it should take about 10 minutes. After it is FINALLY a nut butter consistency you are happy with, add 2 tablespoons of maple syrup and a touch of salt, and mix just until combined. See, just one necessary ingredient really, how simple?! Enjoy!