Tag Archives: 30 day blog challenge

5 Healthy Grocery Shopping Tips

5 Healthy Grocery Shopping Tips

Posted on 12. Apr, 2010 by .


As I went to a new grocery store the other day, I noticed how easily I can get distracted with all the baked goods and junk foods (and possibly buy) if I’m not paying attention to what I’m putting in my shopping cart. I also went shopping after I my workout – big mistake! I was hungry and all the food temptations looked good to me…LOL. So, I decided to create a list of healthy grocery shopping tips that you can use so you don’t make the same mistakes I did. Make sure to watch the short video that outlines my strategies (above).

In summary, here are the tips:

  1. Plan your meals for the week including healthy snacks.
  2. Make a your list out of your meal plan and stick to it. Don’t buy anything that’s not on your list.
  3. Eat a meal or a snack before you go to the grocery store. Don’t go grocery shopping while you’re hungry.
  4. Stick to the outside aisles whenever you can. All the junk food and packaged goods are usually in the middle aisles.
  5. Read the ingredients list if you need to buy a packaged or boxed food. Watch out for sugar and saturated fat and long lists of ingredients. Too much of these ingredients and too many of them is never a good thing.

I also should’ve mentioned in the video to have someone check your receipt when you get home. Ask a friend or your personal trainer, if you have one (a personal trainer, I mean as I’m sure you have friends…lol), to keep you accountable of only buying foods that are on your list and nothing else. I hope these healthy grocery shopping tips will help you at your next trip to the supermarket!

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Green Tea and Fat Loss: Is there a Correlation?

Green Tea and Fat Loss: Is there a Correlation?

Posted on 11. Apr, 2010 by .


The other day, I was trying to review my healthy habits and what I have changed or kept over the last several months. I realized that since I quit my desk job, I stopped drinking green tea. Before, I would drink green tea instead of water all throughout the day and always have a cup sitting by my computer screen. This keeps me warm and also helps me drink at least 5 cups of green tea a day.

So, why drink green tea?

You’ve probably heard that green tea is a great source of antioxidants. But, what you may not know is that it also contains other vitamins and minerals such as chromium, manganese, and other phytochemicals. But, the most important one is a polyphenol called epigallocatechin or EGCG. This polyphenol basically works with the caffeine in green tea to help increase fatty acid oxidation (use of fatty acids), block the development of fat cells, reduce fat absorption and increase fat secretion. Best of all, both of them combined also helps increase metabolism. As you can see, all these conditions favor fat loss. All of these benefits were proven by research and you can view the reference at the end of the post. The recommended dose that they found with the study that is effective for fat loss and good health in general is 3-10 cups per day.

So, starting this weekend, I started brewing my green tea again on a regular basis. I am now up to 2 cups per day and I’m working my way up to having more as the days pass. The other strategy that I plan to start doing is to drink cold green tea like an iced tea. Basically, I will brew at least 20 cups of tea over the weekend, put it in the fridge, and let it cool down. I will then use this “iced tea” as my water during workouts or just water in general. This will also help me increase my water consumption in general.

The other thing that I like about drinking green tea is that it helps take the edge off myy desire to eat more after having a meal. You know those times when after you eat, you still feel a little hungry? (I hope you do because then that would mean that I’m normal…LOL). It is for this reason I drink my green tea after meals too.

If you’d like more information about green tea, you can read this page about it on www.wikipedia.org. That article talks about the different types of green tea and the proper way of brewing it. When preparing my green tea, I turn off the heat just before boiling point so that the tea leaves would not taste burned or overcooked. I then steep the tea in the hot water for about 1-2 minutes before drinking it. I also don’t add any sugar to my tea because this will just defeat the purpose of drinking it for health 🙂

Do you practice drinking green tea? If so, what kind of benefits have you gotten from it? Let me know in the comments section below.


European Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Published online ahead of print, doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2010.47
“Epigallocatechin-3-gallate and postprandial fat oxidation in overweight/obese male volunteers: a pilot study”
Authors: F. Thielecke, G. Rahn, J. Böhnke, F. Adams, A.L. Birkenfeld, J. Jordan, M. Boschmann

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The Sacred Heart Diet Review

The Sacred Heart Diet Review

Posted on 11. Apr, 2010 by .


A few weeks ago, one my clients brought to my attention a diet called, “The Sacred Heart Diet.” She said she was really interested in trying it out so I did some research for her to see if it’s any good. I also told her that I will do it with her to give her support if ever she decides to do it. From my research, I found that the diet consists of eating vegetable soup with fruits for 7 days and then adding protein in the form of steak towards the end of it. It claims that you can lose 10-17 lbs during your first week so it really caught my attention.

It sounds easy on paper but having gotten used to eating protein with every meal, I found it particularly difficult because I was hungry all the time. The other thing that made it more difficult for me was the fact that eating only fruits and vegetables, do not make me full. In fact, it stimulates my stomach juices even more so that I get hungry after only a few minutes of eating the soup. It was probably the hardest diet I’ve ever tried! In short, I ended up not doing the diet for the whole 7 days and gave up after the third or fourth day. I told my client that I gave up hoping that she’ll continue doing it without me which she did.

But, I don’t just shove this experience to the side and say that it was a waste of my time. I always learn a few things from any experience that I have. Some things I’ve realized before but I remembered them during this experience. Here are a few of them:

  • Diets are very personal. This means that what may not work for me, may work for you. You wouldn’t know if it will work for you unless you give it a good try.
  • I can cook the vegetable soup, which is quite delicious, during the weekend and eat it with my meals and protein throughout the week. This helps me eat more vegetables!
  • Protein really does keep me full and satisfied for a longer period of time compared to having a meal without it.
  • I need a lot of food varieties in my diet. Otherwise, my com
  • Diets are a great way to jump start your weight loss and learn new, healthy habits to incorporate into your daily life.
  • If you’re curious about the vegetable soup recipe, here it is:

    “The Sacred Heart Diet Vegetable Soup”

    • 1 or 2 cans of stewed tomatoes
    • 3 plus large green onions
    • 1 large can of beef broth (no fat)
    • 1 pkg. Lipton Soup mix (chicken noodle)
    • 1 bunch of celery
    • 2 cans green beans
    • 2 lbs. Carrots
    • 2 Green Peppers

    Cooking Instructions:

    Season with salt, pepper curry, parsley, if desired, or bouillon, hot or Worcestershire sauce. Cut veggies in small to medium pieces. Cover with water. Boil fast for 10 minutes. Reduce to simmer and continue to cook until vegetables are tender.

    If you’d like to get more information about this diet, go to www.everydiet.org for more details. Here is another article that mentions the diet which was written by Mark Sisson over at www.marksdailyapple.com. To its credit, I actually lost 2 lbs during my first 3 days and so did my client which I think are mostly water weight. Then, my client’s husband (who was doing the diet with her) lost 8 lbs during his first 3 days.

    With enough motivation and will power, I probably would have finished the diet but, in my case, I know of better, less miserable ways to lose fat so I didn’t be unnecessarily miserable for the heck of it…lol. Have you tried this diet before or heard of somebody else’s experience with it? If so, let me know by leaving a comment or opinion below.

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