greek yogurt

Might We Suggest a Side Order of…Perception?

NEWSFLASH: Sensations of hunger and satiety may be linked to how we PERCEIVE a meal, far more than simply being based on how many calories we actually consume! In a couple different studies, British researchers served a 3-egg omelet for breakfast – but told the volunteers the first meal had 2 eggs and the other group was told the meal had 4 eggs (Idea Fitness Journal Feb 2018). When people thought they had eaten LESS they reported feeling hungry sooner and then ate more throughout the day than the group that thought they had eaten more. Now intuitively this sounds a little obvious, but just think of the implications! The PERCEIVED amount that you eat, may be even more important than the ACTUAL amount that you eat! Try adding larger volumes of less calorie dense foods (*cough cough* vegetables) to trick your brain into thinking you are consuming more overall.

How Can We Use This Info?

• Try serving your meals and/or snacks on smaller plates or in smaller bowls to give the visual appearance of a larger volume of food. Sounds kinda stupid right? After a little while you will get used to the size and feel satisfied that you piled your food high and still hit your goals!

• Do you eat straight out of the bag or box? This is a huge no-no for conscious consumption! Make sure to parcel out a serving in a separate container or palm of your hand and step away from the bag! Eating straight out of full size packages will give you little to no feedback of how much food you are consuming!

• Start your meals or snacks with a fist sized serving of vegetables and then add some protein from there.

Step up your snacks! How would a “snack” be perceived if it was a full side salad or serving of soup? What would that do to your perception of your next meal? Would you eat as much thinking you had just had a small “meal” snack a couple hours ago? If you struggle with eating too much, consider eating 3-5 small(er) meals, instead of thinking of them as snacks, and see what happens!

• The next time you are eating, stop for a moment and be present! Realize WHAT you are eating: the quantity, the taste, the look, the feel or texture, pay attention to your hunger cues, and be MINDFUL of your eating. Each day try to increase the amount of mindfulness you bring to your meal times, and even increase the amount of time spent on your meals and see if that helps to bring balance to the quantity of food being consumed.
(Hint: IT WILL! And you will feel much more satisfied afterwards)

Recipes to Help Get You Started!

A Light and Powerful Combo
– Dice up a whole cucumber and tomato
– Toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper
– 3 ounces of diced chicken or turkey (optional)
The perception of this light meal/snack will really surprise you at only around 250 calories and 26g of protein!
*Cucumbers are only 8 calories!

Simple Chicken Salad
– Diced chicken or turkey
– Finely chopped cauliflower, sweet peppers and really any veggies!
– Plain Greek yogurt
– Dry ranch seasoning to taste.

Mix it up and serve by itself or wrapped in a lettuce leaf!

Step Up Your Snack Game!

Healthy Eating can be quite a challenge. Nearly anyone who has tried to make positive changes to their diet can admit this. As you start to build new habits however, you might find that meals are more manageable, but what do you do when hunger strikes in between meals? For many of us, our workplace has a room similar to this one that begs to answer the question…

The word “Snack” is most often associated with something less healthy, or natural, than a small meal, but keep thinking about how you can form your days around small meals, whether that is 3 or 5 times a day. No matter what though, sometimes you need that fast snack. Here are some great options for you:

Be prepared!

Keep It Simple

Roll a piece of cheese or a pickle in some lunch meat to get a quick protein boost. Look for natural meats without added nitrates and a short ingredient list.

Chia Pudding

Whether for a breakfast or for a snack, chia pudding can fit the bill! Simply combine chia seeds with coconut milk, vanilla, cinnamon, and maple syrup.
Get creative by adding protein powder, fresh fruit, cocoa powder…you name it!
Check out the recipe here!

Ellipse Breakfast Muffins

Need a quick breakfast that can be eaten as is or jazzed up? Check out our Classic Ellipse Breakfast Muffins with just oatmeal, egg beaters, applesauce, and baking soda.
Add-On’s: nut butter, yogurt, etc
Add-In’s: fresh or dried fruit
Add-With’s: cottage cheese and fruit!

Need Something Salty?

Try roasted chickpeas! Toss drained chickpeas with olive oil and salt/garlic salt and bake 30-40 minutes at 450 degrees until browned and crispy. Want a little kick? Add a dash of cayenne pepper!

Apples A New Way

Apple Snack

Have a sweet tooth that NEEDS to be tamed NOW? Try slicing an apple all the way across to get full flat circles slices. Spread nut butter on the slice and add toppings like chopped nuts, unsweetened coconut, or even a few dark chocolate chips or cacao nibs.

Make a "Small Meal"

“Crack Slaw” has a great combination of protein, vegetables, and seasonings! The recipe calls for Dole Coleslaw mix but consider using broccoli slaw for an extra vitamin boost! Find it here!

Sweet Craving?

Get your sweet fix by mixing peanut butter (or powdered peanut butter) with plain greek yogurt and maybe even a dash of sugar-free pudding mix to make a great fruit dip!

Diet Myth-Busting!

This week we are busting diet myths! First up, it’s…

EAT LESS, WEIGH LESS.”

While that CAN be true in some cases, usually people don’t want to lose weight – they want to lose fat! So, if you are comfortable depriving your body the nutrients it needs, feeling hungry all the time, and losing muscle, water and bone density – then this is the diet for you! In order to maintain muscle and proper body functioning (especially for people involved in strength training several times a week like our Ellipse members!) you need to eat at least a certain number of calories in the proper ratio of protein, fat and carbohydrates.
Now of course if an average person was eating 3,000 calories a day sure, cutting their calorie intake a little will probably help them lose some weight. For most of us however, when we “diet” we tend to cut out entire macronutrient categories (*cough cough* carbohydrates), and slash caloric intake below a baseline level needed to ensure your body doesn’t enter “starvation mode”.

LOW-FAT, LOW-CARB, SUGAR-FREE, DIET, LITE”

These are marketing terms dreamed up in a corporate office to sell cheap (in quality and ingredients, not always in price) products to the incredibly large market of people desperate to lose weight. We’ve discussed the downside to artificial sweeteners in the past, but products with these labels tend to be highly processed, and are often just junk food disguised as a guilt-free indulgence – however, they are anything but. Low or Fat-Free products often have added sugar to make it taste good enough to eat (see the classic example of fat-free frozen yogurt)

EAT SMALLER AMOUNTS FREQUENTLY TO BOOST METABOLISM.”

The truth is the number one way to boost your metabolism is by increasing the amount of muscle you have – that’s about it. Constant digestion has a negligible effect on your metabolism and might even do more harm than good for your teeth and intestines. Eating a healthy snack (think: Veggies and Hummus, Fruit and Greek Yogurt or Peanut Butter, etc) between meals however can help you to stay more satisfied during the day and prevent overeating at meal time.

EATING PROTEIN AND CARBS SEPARATELY AIDS IN WEIGHT LOSS.”

This one is patently UN-true because in fact the best way to ensure efficient digestion of protein is to pair it with a high-fiber carbohydrate. Many of the healthiest protein options come pre-paired with carbohydrates already like beans, nuts, seeds etc.

EATING FAT MAKES YOU FAT!”

This one is very important because many people striving for a healthy diet almost totally abstain from dietary fat, which is to their detriment because many vitamins (A, D, E and K) REQUIRE fat to be absorbed into the body. Also adding small amounts of healthy fat (EVOO, Coconut Oil, etc) to vegetables makes most people much more likely to eat them, and help you feel full! (Think: apple = still hungry vs. apple + peanut butter = energy + satisfaction)

DON’T EAT AFTER 8 PM!”

This might be good advice, but not because late night calories are really any worse than daytime calories. Most of the time late night snacks are our worst ones. High fat, high sugar snacks that don’t actually serve any purpose to sate hunger. Try not to go more than 5 hours without eating during the day to avoid being famished late at night, and try to contain your eating hours roughly within a 12-hour window – that alone might help you save a couple hundred calories per day!

Consider these myths BUSTED

Hack Your Summer with these Cool Tricks

Are you ready for fun in the sun??

But really, are you ready for all that comes along with that? The beautiful weather lures us out in the heat, but lurking everywhere all Summer long are cold, sugary temptations like ice-cream and popsicles! And spending all that extra time out in the sun is sure to affect your hydration – which as we’ve learned in the past has drastic implications for our health and fitness goals.

But fear not! We have some great tricks you can use this Summer to keep you cool, well hydrated and most importantly satisfied all Summer long without boosting your sugar intake.

Protein-Packed Coconut Popsicles

Few things are more satisfying than an ice cold popsicle on a hot, dry day! Boost your protein and energy with this delicious alternative to popsicles containing all kinds of additives, preservatives etc. It’s super simple!

– Blend 2 Scoops of Bio-Whey with 1 Can Full Fat Coconut Milk
– Pour into popsicle molds and serve frozen

Frozen Grapes

Hands down one of the easiest ways to cool down with a delicious treat is to freeze your grapes! Wash beforehand and pat dry so they don’t all clump together. Put in the freezer and enjoy them straight out of the icebox! Or if you want a slushier texture let them thaw a couple of minutes before eating.

Protein Packed Yogurt

Greek Yogurt is another great way to keep cool, and you can boost the flavor and nutrition by mixing in a scoop of Bio-Whey and 1-2 tsp of water to thin a little. 37 grams of protein come packed into this combo!

Stay Well Hydrated

Like the glue that holds together all of your sound nutrition choices, hydration is essential for ensuring your body is working properly and handling the nutrients you are giving it in an effective way! If the taste of water just doesn’t do it for you, consider flavoring it with some citrus! And if carrying a lemon around with you is not really your thing…maybe try something like True Lemon. True Lemon contains no artificial sweeteners, real fruit flavor, and no preservatives; their new crystallized citrus comes in lemon, lime, grapefruit and orange flavor.

Tired of the ice melting in your water bottle within moments of stepping outside into the hot sun? Fill it half full and freeze your bottle over night lying on it’s side. That way when you fill it up the long, vertical ice cube will keep your water refreshingly cold much longer!

Now, no Summer post would be complete without a suggestion for the grill, so save time and flavor up that boring chicken! Before freezing your chicken, toss in your marinade! As the chicken thaws it will be soaking up the tasty flavors. Try lime juice, soy sauce, and ginger OR a lemon juiced w/ zest, garlic, olive oil, thyme, and salt/pepper.
https://www.noshtastic.com/grilled-paleo-lemon-chicken-thyme/

Spicy Chicken Wrap from Ellipse

Spicy Chicken Wraps

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup fat free greek yogurt
  • 2 Tbsp. chili garlic sauce
  • 4 multigrain wraps
  • 2 cups chopped roasted chicken breast
  • 1 cup thinly sliced romaine lettuce
  • 1 cup matchstick-cut carrots
  • 1 cup sliced green onions (about 7)

Preparation:

1. Combine yogurt and chili garlic sauce in a small bowl.

2. Spread mixture evenly over half of each wrap.

3. Top yogurt mixture evenly with chicken and remaining ingredients.

4. Roll up and secure ends with wooden picks, if desired.  Yield 4 servings (1 wrap)

Nutritional  Information:  Each serving: 289 calories, 10.1g. fat (1.5g saturated), 32g protein, 24g carbs, 10g fiber, 887mg sodium, 65mg cholesterol, 3mg Iron, 63mg Calcium

 

Asian Chicken Salad Lettuce Cups by Ellipse

 Hi Everyone,

  Here is a terrific recipe to make a big batch and have quick and easy meals for lunch or dinner on the run!  You can wrap this chicken salad in a Boston lettuce leaves, toss it in a pita pocket or, serve it on whole wheat toast!  Enjoy!

Asian Chicken Salad Lettuce Cups
3-4   Small Chicken Breasts
1      Cup Shredded Carrots
1      Can (8 oz.) Sliced Water Chestnuts (halved)
6      Scallions, diagonally sliced
1/4  Cup of Greek Yogurt
1/4  Cup of Asian Salad Dressing
1      Head of Boston Lettuce

GARNISH:  Hot pepper flakes (like Mrs. Dash – Extra Spicy)

 Directions:  Thoroughly cook chicken breasts and then shred the chicken into bite-size pieces.  Place the chicken in a bowl with the carrots, water chestnuts, & scallions.  In a small bowl, whisk yogurt with salad dressing, and then toss this with the chicken mixture.  Spoon into lettuce leaves and sprinkle with hot pepper flakes if desires.

Serves:  4
Total Calories: 227  Carb=20g Prot=31g Fat=3.5g

Barbequed Turkey Sandwiches

Are you searching for a new recipe to serve during your football game party?  This delicious recipe is perfect to serve to a crowd as you can simply double the recipe!  A tailgate party sandwich you can enjoy without the guilt!  A great topping  to this sandwich is a dab of fresh coleslaw!!

Barbequed Turkey Sandwiches

1   Medium Onion, finely chopped
2   Tsp. Olive Oil
3/4 Cup Chili Sauce
1/2 Cup Water
2   Tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce
1   Tbsp. Brown Sugar
3   Cups Shredded Cooked Turkey Breast
6   Whole Wheat Hamburger Buns, split

Directions:  In a large saucepan, saute onion in oil until tender.  Stir in the chili sauce, water, Worcestershire sauce, and brown sugar.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes.  Stir in turkey; heat through.  Serve on buns.

Serves:  6
Total Calories: 278   Carb=32g Prot=25g Fat=8.9g

 Ellipse Tip:  Some great options for buns are Village Hearth Light Buns, Sara Lee De-Light, and Arnold’s Sandwich Thins.

“Super Bowl” of Chili!!

Hi Everyone,

As you prepare for the big game this Sunday, here is a recipe that will feed a crowd!  This chili can be made ahead and left to simmer on the stove or placed in a slow cooker to keep warm after you are finished cooking!  Enjoy the day and game with friends, but why not enjoy a healthy dish, too?

“Super Bowl” of Chili!!

1.5 Lbs. Extra Lean Ground Turkey

2    Cloves Garlic, minced

16  Cups (or 4 qt.) of Tomato Juice

1    16-Oz. Can Kidney or Chili Beans

2    16-Oz. Cans Stewed Tomatoes

2    Tbsp. Chili Powder

1/4 Tsp. Salt

1/4 Tsp. Pepper

5    Cups Whole Wheat Noodles, cooked

Directions:  In a large kettle over medium heat, stir together tomato juice, beans, tomatoes, chili powder, salt, and pepper.  Let simmer and begin to warm.

Meanwhile, boil water and cook noodles until tender or according to packaging directions.  Once cooked; drain and add to soup mixture.

In a non-stick skillet coated with cooking spray, add garlic and sauté for about 1-2 minutes.  Add ground turkey and brown turkey into small crumbles; cooking until all pink is gone and turkey is cooked through.  Add the turkey to the soup, stir together, and cook soup to desired temperature and serve!

Serves:  10

Total Calories: 280   Carb=35g Prot=25g Fat=1.8g

Tiffany’s Tip:  1)  Having more than 10 people?  Just double the recipe!!  2)  Add a dollop of plain fat-free Greek yogurt to the top of your bowl of chili to add a cool taste to a hot bowl of soup!

Shrimp & Crab Wrap

Shrimp and Crab Wrap

12   Pre-cooked Shrimp, chopped

1/2 Cup Imitation Lump Crab

4     Tbsp. Fat-free Plain Greek Yogurt

1     Heaping Tbsp. of Dry Ranch Dressing Mix

1/2 Small Tomato, chopped

1/4 Cup Shredded – Reduced Fat Cheddar Cheese

2     Large Lettuce Leafs

2     Whole Wheat Tortillas

Directions:  Chop pre-cooked shrimp, crab meat, and tomato; add to mixing bowl.  Stir Greek Yogurt and Dressing Mix into the same bowl.  Place large lettuce leaf on each tortilla, top each with 1/2 of the seafood mixture, and sprinkle each with 1/2 of the cheese.  Roll into a wrap and enjoy!

Serves:  2

Total Calories: 234   Carb=28g Prot=27g Fat=2.8g

Tiffany’s Tip:  If you are not a seafood fan, you can swap the shrimp and crab meat out for canned chicken, diced chicken breast, leftover turkey, or leftover pork tenderloin!

Chicken Fajitas by Ellipse

Hi Everyone~

Making your own chicken fajitas at home can save you tons of calories and fat!  When dining out, while fajitas may be the best choice on the menu, they are typically prepared in butter and oil.  This only adds unneeded fat and calories.  The average serving of Chicken Fajitas at a restaurant contains 760 calories and 19 grams of fat.  This DOESN’T include any condiments such as sour cream, cheese, guacamole, etc….  Beware of those extras….they’ll get you every time!

Chicken Fajitas by ELLIPSE!

3 Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts

2 Medium Green Peppers

2 Medium Red Peppers

1 Large Onion

1 Clove Garlic

8 Whole Wheat Tortillas

Fresh Lemon Juice

Taco Seasoning Mix

Directions:  In a non-stick skillet, add a ¼  cup water and 3 chicken breasts and heat over med-high heat.  Boil the chicken in the skillet and shred as chicken is cooked.  Add water as needed.  When chicken is cooked, add 2 tablespoons of taco seasoning mix.

Meanwhile, heat a separate skillet over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and 1 clove of minced garlic.  Let cook for about 2 minutes, and then add sliced peppers and onions.  Mix onions and peppers and add a splash of water to pan to help soften the veggies.  When cooked through, squeeze additional lemon juice over the top.

Serve chicken and veggies on whole wheat tortillas and enjoy!

Serves:  4

Total Calories: 307   Carb=21g Prot=44g Fat=6.8g

Tiffany’s Tip:  Once you have your chicken and veggies wrapped into your tortilla, top with a dollop of Fat-free Plain Greek Yogurt!  This adds a touch more protein and very few calories.  Greek Yogurt is always a great swap for sour cream!