Meditation is not, by any means, a new concept. While it is commonly associated with Eastern spiritual practices, the overall concept of stilling, calming or training the mind is a commonly used tactic. A common myth with meditation is that it’s exclusive – belonging to health conscious young single people, or those devoting their life to spiritual observance. Truthfully, meditation is an effective tool that may be employed by anyone that has just 5 minutes of free time.
By: Eryl McCaffrey
We can learn a lot from nature. If we align our lives with the cycles of the seasons, we’re much more likely to maintain a healthy balance in our bodies and minds over the course of the year. When the summer sun is blazing and the air is moist, we should consume more water and enjoy the abundant natural supply of Vitamin D. Spring is the warm-up season – it prepares our minds and bodies for the oncoming heat, while allowing us to cleanse ourselves of frigid temperatures, sluggish bodies and sleepy moods. Spring offers a unique opportunity to tap into the energy we seemed to have collected over the colder months - let’s spring clean ourselves just like we spring clean our homes!
Four tips to spring clean your health:
- Give Herbal Tea a Try- Soak up the therapeutic benefits of soothing herbal teas like chamomile and peppermint as you bring your body back into balance. Reduce or eliminate coffee from your diet and try green tea if you’re craving a caffeinated boost. Mild flavored herbal teas usually don’t require sweeteners to taste delicious, an added benefit to those of us avoiding sugar.
- Get Outside- It doesn’t matter what you do once you’re in nature, just be sure to turn off your phone and intentionally unplug yourself for 30 minutes or longer each day. Reconnect to the greenery around you by practicing yoga, going for a walk, hike, bike or even taking a quiet moment on a park bench. Being in nature has been proven to ease anxiety and depression and it also provides us with an opportunity to activate our serotonin.
- Set an Intention- Get out your journal, laptop, phone or voice-recorder and set an intention for Spring of 2016. Be clear about what you want to let go of from the past few months and what you want to achieve this season. More importantly, zero in on how you want to feel in your mind and body over the next few months. Keep it simple and focused. Are you craving a stronger sense of inner peace? If so, ask yourself what steps you need to take in order to access that. Often the act of focusing on what we truly want to improve or strengthen allows us to set our life in that direction. Keeping mindful and consistent goals can prevent anxiety and put us at ease as well!
- Eat What’s in Season- Check out what your local market has to offer on the fruit and vegetable front and do your best to buy what’s in season. In doing so, you are aligning your body with the natural goodness of what the Earth has to offer. Many fruits and vegetables offer a variety of nutrients. On top of that, you will be supporting community businesses. It’s a win-win!
If winter weather triggers carbohydrate cravings, you're not alone. Many people snack more on carbohydrate-containing foods in winter, sometimes in an unconscious effort to boost their mood, says Judith Wurtman, PhD, a former scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and co-author of The Serotonin Power Diet. How can you tell if your seasonal carbohydrate cravings are in the normal range or a possible symptom of winter depression?
By now most of us are aware about the dangers of eating too much sugar. From an increased risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and cancer, the list is long and frightening, but can seemingly feel distant at the same time. Interestingly, it is sometimes the vain outcomes that really hammer home a message. Add wrinkles to that list and our ears suddenly perk up. Sugar causes wrinkles too?!
Yes, sugar contributes to wrinkles.
Some studies show men seem to be less concerned about their health than women are. Men may be more likely to smoke and/or drink, they may be more willing to put themselves into dangerous or risky situations and they may be less disciplined when it comes to scheduling regular check-ups and screenings with their doctors.
This, of course, is a generalization. There are plenty of men out there who are on top of their medical needs and pay close attention to their health and fitness. Still, we thought we’d take a quick look at some of the health issues that concern men the most. We’d like to offer the guys a few tips on how to eat for optimal health, as well as some suggestions for achieving a healthy work-life balance.
Do you have trouble sticking to a healthy diet, especially when there are so many delicious sugar filled options out there? Well, many people are in the same boat as you! Want to know a secret? The trick to breaking your bad habits is by putting healthy habits in their place! Often, new dieters start out positive and dedicated but as time progresses they begin falling back into the same old unhealthy cycle they were trying to get rid of in the first place! Cutting out sugar is hard. Rewarding yourself with small treats or similar foods can help. Continue reading
Arugula Salad with BBQ Chips
At lunch time, why not think chips instead of croutons to add crunch to your salad? One serving of our Simply Protein chips contains 15-16 grams of protein and only 4 grams fat.
Try this Arugula salad topped with BBQ flavoured chips that serves six. Not only is it yummy, it is great because you can make substitutes based upon any food intolerances you have or if you are a vegetarian.
- 6 Bacon slices, cut into 1 inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons of Balsamic vinegar
- 2 teaspoons of dijon mustard
- 1 finely chopped shallot
- Salt and ground pepper to taste
- ½ cup of olive oil
- 6 ounces of Crumbled blue cheese
- 8 cups of Arugula
- 2 bags of Simply Protein BBQ flavoured chips
- Cook the bacon in a skillet until crispy.
- Drain the bacon on paper towels.
- In a small bowl, combine the vinegar, mustard and shallot, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Whisk in the olive oil in a steady stream until it is incorporated and an emulsion forms.
- Toss the arugula with just enough dressing to coat lightly. Add the bacon pieces and blue cheese.
- Serve the salad with the Simply Protein BBQ Flavored chips on the top.
We adapted this recipe from Linda Steidel’s off of the ifood.tv website.
This month we wanted to check out how adding our Simply Protein Chips could ramp up the flavor and healthiness of some great recipes.
We were both pleased and astonished at our discoveries. We’ve gathered some of our savory favorites below that we hope you love!
Chili Chip Torta
Now we normally wouldn’t have thought about this, but turns out people are adding chips to their breakfast. We figured there was only one way to get to the bottom of whether this was a good idea or not...
Turns out chips are great at breakfast! There was no question but to use the chili flavored chips. This recipe takes 20 minutes and will serve 4 – just make sure you have a 10” non-stick skillet.
- 6 eggs
- 1 tablespoon sliced scallions
- 2 cups Simply Protein Chili Flavor chips
- kosher salt and cracked black pepper
- 1 teaspoon butter
- sliced scallions (to garnish)
- Greek yogurt (to garnish)
- Beat eggs and scallions in a large bowl. Gently fold Simply Protein Chili Flavor chips into eggs, trying to break as few as possible. Season with salt.
- Heat pan over medium high heat and add butter; when foam subsides, add egg/chip mixture and turn heat to medium low. Using a rubber spatula, gently pull eggs away from sides of pan while the eggs set.
- When eggs have begun to set, use a oven mitt and a plate to flip over torta. Place plate over pan, and securing the pan to the plate with an oven mitt, flip pan over so torta lands on the plate, then gently slip torta back into pan to finish cooking.
- Slice into segments and serve with more sliced scallions, cracked black pepper, and Greek yogurt.
This recipe was taken from Sydney’s great recipe off of serious eats and we just substituted with Simply’s chips.
Herb Chip Crusted Cod
This recipe allows for simple substitution of our herb flavored chips. What won us over was the texture of this dish. Although we did have that annoying moment of “why haven’t we thought of this before?”
- 2 bags of Simply Protein Herb Flavor Chips
- 16 oz. fillets (4 oz per person) cod fillets, 1 to 1 1/2 inches thick
- Pepper, for seasoning
- 2 teaspoons reduced fat mayonnaise
- Heat the oven to 400º F. Place the Herb Flavor chips in a gallon size plastic storage bag and gently crush the chips (using the heel of your hands).
- Line a baking sheet with a cooling rack and spray it lightly with cooking spray.
- Combine the mayonnaise and a few dashes of pepper and then schmear (not smear) it over the top of each fillet. Now gently but firmly press on the crushed chips, completely covering the top of each piece of fish and place them on the cooling rack.
- Bake the fillets until they are just cooked through, about 10-15 minutes depending on the thickness of the fish.
This recipe came from Jennifer’s blog at Savoring the Thyme.
Let us know your favorite recipes that include chips! Or do you think there is a different flavor chips pairing we should have tried with a recipe?
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