Thursday, July 24, 2014

Infused Water

I have recently discovered, and fallen in love with, infused water. Infused water is basically water that has different fruits, herbs or vegetables essentially in it. The flavors & nutrients infuse with the water, adding flavor and different beneficial properties to the water.  

Now, while I have been experimenting with different fruits, such as watermelon, strawberry and orange, this is only going to be the recipe that I started my water infusion experience with: lemon, cucumber, mint and ginger.


Lemon, as most of us know, is a great addition to a glass of water. It's full of Vitamin C for an immune system boost, potassium for heart health, aids in digestion, helps flush toxins and stimulates your liver, freshens breath, helps reduce hunger cravings, reduces inflammation, gives an energy boost, helps cut caffeine cravings and fights viral infections.

Cucumbers are also full of helpful nutrients. It's full of antioxidants which help with healthy aging and fight disease. Full of Vitamin K, they aid in keeping bones in tip top condition. They can also aid in remedying a hangover, weight loss and reducing blood pressure.

Mint adds a fresh taste to the water and has been show to aid in digestion.

Ginger is also a great addition to water, as it also contains many antioxidants. 

So, here is how I make my refreshing water:

You'll need:

1 lemon

1/2 cucumber

3/4 cups fresh mint leaves

2 inch section of ginger (use a spoon to scrape the skin off, save your knuckles) 

After you have scrubbed and wash the cucumber and lemon, slice each into as thin of slices and you can manage (I normally do some funky end cutting of my lemon, to get every part I can.) 

Once you have scrapped the skin off the ginger, cut it into small pieces. Mine are usually just big enough to not get poured out through the spout of my pitcher.

Take the lemon & cucumber slices, ginger pieces and mint leaves and place into a pitcher. Pour water into the pitcher. (I would suggest distilled or filtered water. I use water from my Brita pitcher.)



You can drink the water immediately, but I would advise that you wait at least a few hours if possible, overnight is best. I normally make a fresh pitcher at night so the water can sit for at least 6 hours.



I'll be honest, it took a little bit to get used to the taste, but I have come to think that it is refreshing and I don't like drinking plain jane water anymore. Also, I will say that after drinking this water for just a few days, I truly felt less bloated and 'slimmer.'



Please let me know if you drink any types of infused water OR if you try my recipe and like or dislike it.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Protein Pancakes

I took my first stab at making protein pancakes yesterday for breakfast. Now, I know there are a lot of different recipes, some more complicated than others with more ingredients. I made mine fairly simply, using just a few ingredients I always keep in my kitchen


3/4 c. ground oats ( I just put a cup or so into my Ninja blender and made it into a powder

3/4 c. egg whites

1 T. ground flax seed (not necessary)

1T. cinnamon (not necessary)

1/4 c. water

I mixed all the ingredients in a bowl, and after my pan had been heating for a little bit at medium heat, I sprayed it with canola oil spray. Once the oil was warm, I poured the batter into the pan and cooked it like a normal pancake.

Once it was done, I took it out and topped it with peanut butter. But I'm sure it would have tasted good with syrup as well.

Now, this being the first time I've made this, I learned a couple things:

1. As long as the dry and wet ingredients are equal, you can make as much or little as you want.

2. It's a bit more dense than a normal pancake, but good. Next time I may experiment with vanilla extract.

3. Other than the grounding of the oats and flax seed, it was really simple to put together.

I definitely think I will be making this again, possibly for my pancake loving prince. (Hopefully he won't realize that it's good for him!

What new recipes have you tried out lately?

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

I may or may not be addicted....

A few weeks ago, I meandering my way around a local health/organic food store near my office. My co-worker told me they made an amazing chicken salad and I was there to get some. After I got my yummy looking container of chicken salad (which I discovered they put honey in. Odd, but yummy), I headed over to the drink case to find something 'good' to drink. I saw they had the brand 'Honest T' and I enjoy the Morrocan Mint Flavor. But they didn't have it. Sad face. So, I looked a little more and saw this bottle:

Sweet Leaf Green Tea. I figured, why not try something new...
OMG!!!!!! I love it! You can taste the green tea, the honey and the mint. It is so yummy! I saw they had them on sale at Whole Foods a couple weeks ago, $1.00 each, so I stocked up. According to the website, this is how they describe it:
Why settle for run-of-the-mill? Our Mint & Honey Green Tea puts a spin on homemade goodness with crisp, refreshing flavors inspired by Morocco. (This unique flavor already has quite the following.)
If the flavorful infusion of spearmint leaves and touch of honey in every bottle weren’t enough to convince you to give it a try, this organic green tea is also chock-full of antioxidants (90mg EGCG).
And, for what it's worth, it's actually pretty decent, nutrionally speaking. Of course, good old water is always the best choice, but this is great for an afternoon treat!
via Sweet Leaf Teas

What new drinks have you been trying?

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Meal Prep

I did my first attempt at meal prep last night, and of course did not take pictures.
I cooked up 2 pounds of ground turkey, a box of Uncle Ben's brown rice and (gasp) a can of green beans. (I only used the can because I thought I had frozen ones, but I didn't). Once everything was cooked, I  put one cup of cooked meat, half a cup of rice into four countainers and split the green beans between the four containers.
I'm hoping it turns out yummy!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Clean Eating

I hate the 'D' word. You know the word, that one single word that restricts you from eating pretty much everything except lettuce. Diet. There I said it.
Although the word diet can also mean the way you eat. As in your diet consists of ..... The trust is, I just want to find a way of eating that will not bore me to death, be fairly easy and improve and keep me healthy.
I tried the low-carb 'diet.' It was great, I lost a ton of weight, actually getting down to my 'ideal' weight. But I gained it all back, got pregnant and gained more.
Anyway, an acquaintance of mine on Facebook and Instagram is always posting pictures of what she makes for dinner and it always looks delish! And she eats 'clean.' So after some research (and by no means is this the dietitian/nutritionist description of it) this is what I discovered about eating clean: 
  • You are encouraged to eat more fruits and vegetables and limit red meats
  • You should not eat processed food. 'If it came from a plant it's okay, if it's made in a plant it's not.'
  • You are encouraged to eliminate white rice, white potatoes and white flour.
  • It's easier to eat at home, you have better control of what goes in your food.

One thing I learned doing my research is that you start to learn what your body needs and what foods are needed. You look at foods more as fuel for your body than just something to fill you stomach when you're hungry. For example, for my mid-morning snack, I ate a piece of Ezekiel Sprouted Grain bread, with TB of natural peanut butter and half a banana on top. I know that snack will satisfy me until lunch because of the fiber in the bread, protein in the peanut butter and the good carbs in the banana. My other choice for a mid-morning snack was a frosted donut.
I'm still learning about the concept of eating clean and trying to learn recipes and how to make it easier for me to do everyday.
Do you have any tips for eating clean?