Monthly Archives: January, 2014

Hot and Healthy Trends: Mason Jar Meals

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Remember those old Mason jars?  Your grandmother, mother or aunt probably used them for homemade jams and jellies.  Well they’ve made a comeback…in a big way.  And they are being used for more than just canning.

Photo credit: Etsy, The Knot, Be Different Act Normal, The Greenhead

Photo credit: Etsy, The Knot, Be Different Act Normal, The Greenhead

Search the Internet and you’ll find all sorts of ways people are using Mason and Kerr jars.  But going back to it’s roots, many busy households are using these jars for meals.  Mason Jar Meals.

Photo Credit: BigRedKitchen

Photo Credit: BigRedKitchen

One of the great benefits of Mason Jar Meals is the look.  We eat with the eyes first.  Assembling a salad or meal in a jar can be very appealing…especially if you are eating healthy.  All the bright colors draw in the eye and can make eating more enjoyable.

Personally, I get tired of salad real quick.  But using the MJM concept adds some newness to the same old tired salad.  I can put the dressing at the bottom, add ingredients that won’t get soggy, then some lettuce.  Right before I eat it, turn it over for a moment so the dressing flows down over the ingredients.  Then, pour it onto a plate.

If you Google the term “Mason Jar Meals”, the link to Big Red Kitchen will be your first choice.  Blogger Robin Sue has assembled almost a complete primer on Mason Jar Meals.  Robin is a Cross Fit trainer and RN, specializing in cardio-thoracic medicine.  She offers lots of suggestions and tips on choosing ingredients, assembling meals, and even how to store and carry the jars.  My favorite recipe is Chicken Ramen Salad.

Chicken Ramen Salad

So check out Big Red Kitchen and also check Pinterest for more ideas for meals.  Or just create your own.

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Tips for A Healthier 2014!

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Thanks to Diana, Rod, Stephanie and Shari Spaet for all of the great tips for a healthier lifestyle!

  • Use a children’s plate.  Smaller plate = smaller portions.
  • When eating out, ask the waiter or waitress for a takeout box right away and place half of the food in the container immediately. This will prevent you from eating too much. Out of sight, out of mind.
  • Don’t bring tempting foods into your house!  If you do, you will seek them out for cravings.  Or you’ll talk yourself into eating so it won’t go to waste.
  • It’s about changing habits, so it takes time.  It’s so important to remain calm in knowing this.
  • Set a goal and share it with others.  Keeps you going!
  • Make small changes at a time.  Start with eliminating one item you consume on a regular basis.  It all started with eliminating soda pop for me.  After that, switched out the white bread for whole grain, grilled foods for fried foods, increased intake of fruits and vegetables and decreased intake of breads and red meats.
  • Drink lots of water.  Lots.
  • Drink green tea to help boost your metabolism.
  • Count calories.  I know it’s a pain in the rear, but it has helped me tremendously!  It’s so hard in the beginning, but it becomes second nature after a while and a true eye opener!  I love My Fitness Pal.
  • Exercise at least 3 days a week for 30 minutes each day.  It wasn’t until I starting exercising that I literally saw the pounds fade away.  The more you exercise the better for your body and the quicker the results.
  • Fad diets work, but once you stop eating that way, the pounds come right back on.  Develop your own plan.  Eats lots of healthy foods.  Don’t deprive yourself of a treat from time to time.  Make conscientious choices.  If you know that at that family gathering there is going to be cake and you are gonna have a piece, know that the rest of your day should include lots of healthy choices and possibly a few extra minutes of exercise.
  • Find what works for you.
  • Stay positive.  Practice positive affirmations on a daily basis and surround yourself with inspiring people.  Read motivational articles, books, Facebook posts….anything.
  • Check out the MyFitnessPal blog for recipes and tips!
  • Check out the book Eat for Life by Dr. Joel Fuhrman.  He advocates a nutrient based lifestyle for not only losing weight but improving your health and eliminating disease.
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