LifeVester Recipe: Basil Tomato “Pasta” with Chicken

Recipe: Basil Tomato "Pasta" with Chicken

The following easy-to-make recipe comes from LifeVester Angela Delgado, and offers a much lighter alternative to your traditional plate of pasta. Since Angela discovered zucchini could be turned into noodles a few months ago, she’s been making it every single week!

“It tricks me into thinking I’m eating pasta, which I’ve always been addicted to,” she says. “It’s really quick and has simple flavors that all come together to create a really fresh dish.”

With less than half the calories of regular pasta, and a whole lot of vitamin C and other nutrients, this is one pasta where building a healthy addiction would be well-warranted! Serve it up as a light meal or alongside a slice of whole grain bread and a salad.

Click here for recipe…


Meatless Monday: Sesame Soba Noodles with Cucumbers and Roasted Eggplant

Sesame Soba Noodles with Cucumbers and Roasted Eggplant

Packed with vitamin C and containing 95% water, cucumbers are a LifeVest summer favorite. Thinly sliced with some onions, and a splash of oil and vinegar, and they easily become a refreshing side that won’t weigh down the rest of your meal. Make that same plate a snack, and it won’t weigh you down either.

Luckily, cukes run rampant in gardens this time of year, so there’s plenty of them to both snack on and lighten up pasta recipes like this. Here, their crispness compliments creamy, roasted eggplant that gets tossed with an Asian sesame sauce over soba.

Soba is a type of noodle made from buckwheat flour, which gives it a nutty flavor and also boosts it with protein. Lower in calories than traditional pasta, we love it as a way to add some variety to pasta night, especially when working with Asian flavors. Be sure to look for “100% buckwheat” on the package to get the most nutritional benefits. We recommend Eden, our go-to brand.

Click here to keep reading…


Meatless Monday: Watermelon, Basil & Feta Salad

Watermelon health

Watermelons are synonymous with summer.

Like the first jump into a lake or pool, the fruit creates a cool, crisp and refreshing experience for the hottest of days. And since it’s made up of 92% water, that experience is a light and hydrating one, too.

These latter traits are ones ice cream just can’t match. Hence why when it comes to choosing between watermelon juice vs. sticky vanilla dripping down our hands, 9 times out of 10 you’ll find us reaching for the melon. That little bicep workout we get from doing so is just an added benefit. (The average melon is 20 pounds, 14 of those pounds being sweet, juicy deliciousness.)

Aside from the obvious benefits of keeping watermelon your summer snack of choice, below are 3 other reasons to chow down. Click here to keep reading…


2014 Health: Renew with the Chinese New Year

chinese-new-year-red-envelopes-oranges

Today marks the 2014 Chinese New Year, ushering in the year of the horse. It also stands as the one month marker from when you set your resolutions at the outset of the month. This is a great time to revisit those goals and evaluate whether or not you’ve been staying on track.

Use the Chinese New Year to renew and refresh. Whether you’re still riding pretty or you’ve seem to fallen off your horse, it’s never too late to pump up the energy and really put your goals into action. Haven’t set a resolution yet? We can all benefit from working towards positive initiatives. Make the Chinese New Year your New Year, and spend some time today to declare a resolution.

Need some extra inspiration? Following are some ways to use the year of the horse to your advantage.

  • Giddy up [off the couch]: The horse is part of a 12-year cycle of animals that make up the Chinese zodiac. Each hold different characteristics bestowed to those born in that year. A primary one for those in a horse year is “energy”. Yee-haw.

It is said that this year, all past horse babies will embody an even extra amount of vitality. Good for them. But what does that mean for the rest of us? Well, it’s simply a good excuse to try to tap into some of that energy for ourselves. Let this year be the year you establish a regular workout routine, and find the exercise that fits you best. Whether it’s unwinding after a day of work with an evening yoga class, getting up bright and early for an awakening morning walk, hitting the tennis courts on a Saturday afternoon, or joining a group class, there are tons of ways to get active. Allow yourself to try new activities until you find the one(s) that fits you best. Research shows that exercise fights fatigue, meaning we call all make this the year of our most energized self. The key is just a bit of regular movement! Yee-haw to that too.

  • Taste the tradition: While our New Year seems to be more about imbibing brews and booze, the Chinese New Year is one filled with culinary traditions. Many of the foods they use to signify good luck could also bring your body good health. Plan a celebratory dinner that starts out with a plate of long, leafy greens, meant to signify and wish upon a long life for your parents. Check out this recipe for Bok Choy with Oyster Sauce. Tackle a whole fish for the main event of the meal. The word for fish in Chinese sounds like, and is associated, with the word for abundance. It’s important that the fish be kept whole to represent a good start and finish and to avoid bad luck throughout the year. This recipe for Fragrant Steamed Fish with ginger and scallions from PopSugar sounds like a winner to us. Finish with a simple dessert of fresh oranges, which denote luck and wealth. Bonus points if they still have their leaves, a symbol of longevity.
  • Keep your house pure and clean: It’s Chinese tradition to thoroughly sweep every corner of the house before and after the New Year to rid it of bad luck and negativity. (Take note: don’t clean on the actual New Year, today, for this is said to sweep away good luck!) While cold weather lurks, dance around with your broom, and burn some calories while doing it. This is also a good time to take a look at your cupboards and rid them of unneeded junk. After all, your body is your true home, meaning it’s the most important thing to keep clean if you want to embody good fortune. Let’s raise a green smoothie to that.

Wishing you all a prosperous year ahead, Gong Xi Fa Cai.


Make This! Protein Bars.

Recipe from Fit Foodie Finds

Homemade Clif Bars

I had a Clif Bar the other day and it was damn good. That same day, I was reading Snack Girl and Lisa was talking about how Clif Bars are basically like candy bars. Hmph. This inspired to make a Clif Bar-esk type of granola bar, but with far less ingredients. Why? Two reasons. One: the less ingredients you use, the healthier (usually) and two- it’s easier 🙂 Here is what a typical ingredient list of a Clif Bar looks like..
(Crunchy Peanut Butter): Organic Brown Rice Syrup, ClifPro® (Soy Rice Crisps[Soy Protein Isolate, Rice Flour, Malt Extract], Organic Roasted Soybeans, Organic Soy Flour), Organic Rolled Oats, Organic Evaporated Cane Juice, Organic Peanut Butter (Organic Peanuts, Salt), Peanut Flour, Peanuts, ClifCrunch® (Apple Fiber, Organic Oat Fiber, Organic Milled Flaxseed, Inulin [Chicory Extract], Psyllium), Organic Date Paste, Natural Flavors, Sea Salt.
 
Brown Rice Syrup….Rice Crisps (aka millet puffs)…Peanut Butter…Flaxseed. That all sounds familiar. (It actually sounds quite similar to my Almond Butter Chews from a few days ago. However, mine only have 4 measly ingredients.) Here is my Crunchy Peanut Butter Clif Bar Remake…

Mmmmmm. Delicious and…delicious 🙂

4-Ingredient Crunchy Peanut Butter Clif Bars
Ingredients
-1/2C peanut butter
-5T brown rice syrup
-3T ground flax seed meal
-2C millet puffs or puffed brown rice
-1/2C raisins (optional)

Method
1. First, melt peanut butter (if need be).
2. Then, transfer to a medium sized bowl and add brown rice syrup and mix.
3. Add millet puffs, flax, and raisins and mix until it becomes one big Clif ball.
4. Then, spray an 8×8 pan with non stick cooking spray and transfer mixture into pan.
5. With your fingers, firmly press into the pan, compressing the mixture together.
6. Place pan into the freezer for 5-10 minutes.
7. Next, flip pan over so you have one big clif bar. Using a knife, cut into 6-8 bars.

If you cut it into 8 bars, the nutrition profile is as followed: 183 Calories, 22 carbs, 9g fat, and and 5g protein.

Great taste! Healthy ingredients. I’ll take it 🙂

Recipe from Fit FoodieFinds