Yummy, Easy, Healthy Breakfast!

June 5, 2008

I don’t have lots of time in the morning everyday to make a breakfast I want to eat. On very early days, I make a protein shake or have a gluten free piece of toast with peanut butter and 3 oz of Kefir.

I have been pretty busy for many years in the morning and created a few recipes that make eating well easier because it’s prepared ahead of time. I shared this recipe verbally with the women at our Temple of Beauty one day event last month and Jeanne told me I needed to send it out to everyone!

How I cook is I throw a bunch of things together and I usually do not measure. I will give you approximate amounts but play on your own with what you like and adjust accordingly. This is SO simple- I hope you enjoy it!

Ingredients:

1. 1 carton of 18 eggs

2    2 cloves of garlic or 2 tsp of crushed garlic

3. 1 large onion

4. 1 package of frozen spinach OR broccoli or both

5. 1-2 cups of grated parmesan cheese

6. salt and pepper

Additional items you can add:

· any veggies

· cilantro, dill, parsley, any herbs you want

· feta cheese, cheddar cheese, your favorite cheese

· breadcrumbs for the top

In a 9 inch glass pan, I put some olive oil or spray in the bottom. I use a generous amount to make sure it doesn’t stick to the pan. I’d say a TBSP maybe? Heat the oven to 350.

In a large bowl, I use all 18 egg whites and maybe 3-4 egg yolks. (1 egg is 70 calories, 1 egg white is 15 and I‘d rather have my fat calories from cheese!) Beat the eggs.

In a frying pan, sauté the onion and garlic and veggies if they are raw. Use a little olive oil again for this.

Then dump it all in the bowl with the eggs and mix it around. When I use frozen spinach, I thaw it first and then stick the whole bag of cold spinach in the egg mix.

Add 1- 1.5 cups of the parmesan cheese (and I love adding feta in it too)

Pour it into the dish, sprinkle the remaining .5 cup (or more) or parmesan cheese on the top and bake for 1 hour checking the middle to make sure it cooks through. The bottom and the edges will pull away from the pan a bit and might be a little spongy. The egg makes its own crust in a way so you eliminate the extra carbs and calories from a layer of crust like in a quiche.

I store it in the refrigerator and take a square out to heat up in the morning. Store it for 7 days or less. If you add more veggies and cheese, you might need the 12 inch dish.

It’s a great way to get good protein, a little fat, some greens and veggies in a quick way to start your day off right!

Written by J.J. Flizanes of Invisible Fitness

http://www.invisiblefitness.com 800 571 5722

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Do You Skip Meals?

May 13, 2008

Skipping meals is probably one of the WORST things you could do to your body in terms of metabolism and weight loss. At least half of the people I have talked to recently when interviewing a company on their fitness and health confessed to skipping breakfast or lunch if they were too busy. Most of these people find it hard to lose weight. AND ITS BECAUSE THEY ARE SKIPPING MEALS AND KILLING THEIR METABOLISM. Read on….

What is your Metabolism?

1. Nervous System:

The nervous system needs energy depending on the brain power and frequency at which it is used. Type A people who talk fast, walk fast and do things fast would need more energy than the stereotypical surfer dude who talks slow, moves slow and is relaxed a lot. This is why fat burning pills work. But I am NOT supporting them- I recommend that you do NOT use them! The reason they work is they put your nervous system into overdrive and therefore you burn more calories. A lot of shake and supplement companies add extra caffeine and caffeine type herbs to their products to help you burn those extra calories and give you extra energy. The problem is that there is a price to be paid. Depending on your current health conditions, fat burners and extra caffeine can have negative affects on your heart, brain, hormones, and moods. Rather than manipulating your nervous system, I would recommend focusing on the muscular system.

2. Muscular System:

Muscles are active tissue- they need energy. Fat is not active and needs nothing! The more active tissue you have, the energy (calories) you need. It’s quite simple. As we age or become less active, we often lose muscle which decreases our resting metabolic rate. Women especially are often stumped when they gain weight over a period of time and are shocked because nothing has really changed about their diet or exercise—they have lost muscle over time. The good news is you can get it back and more!

How do you decrease your metabolism?

1. Starvation:

One other thing I need to point out about metabolism and how people decrease theirs without even realizing it is starvation diets or repeated long durations of time with no food. When you past the 5 hour mark of being without food or you skip breakfast and eat your first meal 5-6 hours after you wake up, you are slowly decreasing you metabolism everyday. Your body needs fuel- you don’t give it any so it has to take from within. The body will break down your own muscle and convert it into energy thus taking it away from you and decreasing your total amount of active tissue!

2. Toxicity:

If you eat or drink a lot of fake sugars, eat a lot of fish and canned tuna or live and breathe any chemicals in your home or environment, you may be toxic. You may be toxic if you have a lot of mercury in your mouth-fillings. Toxins get stored in fat tissue and the liver and can cause weight loss resistance. Doing a detox 2-3 times a year is beneficial to all for cleaning out the system.

3. Acid-Stress:

Not getting enough sleep causes elevated cortisol levels. Eating processed foods, too much meat, drinking coffee and alcohol all make your bodies’ ph more acidic. These factors can dehydrate you and imbalance your hormones making it very difficult for the body to use fat as energy and to excrete it from your system.

4.Aging- Decreased Activity

Aging as we already talked about decreases your hormones- which also decreases your muscle and therefore metabolism. Not doing resistance training or building muscle will result in a lower metabolism every year because of aging.

How do you increase your metabolism?

1. Eat more Protein at every meal esp breakfast!

For most women and men this would contain about 10-20 grams of protein in the meal. For example, 2 egg veggie omelette..or a smoothie made with one scoop of egg white or protein powder…or ½-1 cup of Cottage cheese or plain yogurt, ½ C. frozen berries with 1-2 Tbsp flax seed meal or walnuts would do the trick.

2. Supplement your fats!

Essential fats are also known as omega 3 and 6 polyunsaturated fats.They work in tandem with L carnitine and CLA as a trio essential for helping your body mobilize your fat stores to be used as an energy source by the mitochondria, particularly during a workout. Quality varies tremendously. Try to use some that are pharmaceutical grade.

3. Control Cravings and Appetite with Ideal Food Choices

The first key is to understand how your brain, gut and fat cells communicate with each other through hormones and brain messenger chemicals to tell you whether or not you need food and compel you to eat. When they are working properly, they are an elegant machine pinpointing when you need energy and asking you to consume calories to obtain that energy. When they go haywire-and there are many ways for them to go haywire in our current eating climate-they cause you to eat when you don’t need to, contributing to metabolic issues and weight gain.

4. Manage Stress

Another key is to understand how stress makes you fat and how to overcome its effects. Under any physical or psychological stress, the body is designed to protect itself. It stores calories and conserves weight (you might need that energy reserve to run from a predator). It pumps hormones into your system that increase blood fats, sugar and insulin and cortisol to prepare you for fight or flight. Without eating more or exercising less, stress alone will cause weight gain.

5. Detox!

Detoxifying your liver will help it properly metabolize sugars and fats. Toxins from within our bodies and toxins from our environment both contribute to obesity. Getting rid of toxins and boosting your natural detoxification system is an essential component of healthy metabolism and hormonal health for healthy aging.

6. Exercise Efficiently and add Resistance Training

Most people don’t exercise at all but if you do, you will need to create a plan and have some tools. With cardio, a heart rate monitor and pedometer will help track your calories burned and the efficiency of your session. But you still need to add active muscle to increase your metabolism-add resistance training! You can work out at home, on the road, at the gym , office or outside. There are several exercises you can do to stimulate muscle growth without equipment.

Another few tips……

Stay away from ‘whites’. White bread, white rice, white flour, white pasta and white (animal) fats. The good stuff is ‘refined’ out of them.

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. The goal is not just to drink liquids but to get water inside cells. Best water to drink is mineral water. Best choices are Whole Foods flavored Mineral waters from Italy in flavors like strawberry kiwi and raspberry lime, Pelligrino or Fuji water for their purity and mineral content.

Become Accountable-if you fall off track often or you are used to yo-yo dieting and exercise, hire a trainer or a coach. Get involved in a group. Commit yourself to someone so they can help you commit yourself to YOU.

If you need some help getting started, sign in at http://www.invisiblefitness.com or call us at 1 800 571 5722

This was written by J.J. Flizanes, Director of Invisible Fitness


5 Things You Can Do to Be Body Ready For Summer!

March 14, 2008

1. Cut Down or Cut Out Starchy Carbs and Sugars: Now you may read that and react because you think it’s too hard……but I challenge you to TRY it for a few weeks. As the weather is warmer and Spring is rolling in, there are more fruits and veggies being made available. I love my bread and cookies/cake too from time to time. But I LOVE feeling amazing in a tight, slender, lean body even more than the 15 minutes of pleasure on my tongue those foods provide. What is that saying out there? ” A minute on the lips is a lifetime on the hips”? That is a but dramatic but it begs the question, is it really WORTH it????

2. Try 1 New Fruit or Veggie a Week: Do you know how many fruits and veggies there are out there? Most of us eat the same thing day after day, week after week. Some people prefer the “easy” fruits: banana, berries, apple- because you don’t need to peel anything and they are finger foods. But what about papaya, mango, grapefruit, peaches and guava? Not to mention the veggies that you pass all the time in the grocery store and do not know what they are, what they are for or how they taste. Try one. Do some research on how to cook it. Make it a game in the grocery store.

3. Join a Group or Class: Ever taken a dance class? If you have been reading my stuff for more than a few months, you probably know that I am a salsa dancer/teacher/performer. But I started out IN CLASS. You’d be amazed at how many calories you can burn in a partner social dance class! If dancing doesn’t appeal to you, join an intramural sport. Every city has teams that have seasons. I used to play volleyball when I lived in New York City. My friends and co-workers found a city team to join. You meet new people and have new experiences! Just watch the” after party” aspect. You don’t want to eat or drink back all the good work you did in your sport!

4.Buy a New Outfit or Two for the Summer: Get excited about what’s to come! Know how you want to look and feel in it. Plan a vacation. I am getting married in August and it’s very motivating to want to look my best. Some people are planning for a beach vacation that they want to feel free and energetic while they are there. Choose something that gets you excited!!

5. Find Someone to Become Accountible To: That might mean hire a trainer, coach, nutritionist, etc. You can also make some goals with a friend or spouse. It is TOO easy to get off track and forgive yourself because no one else knows what you committed yourself to. We are accountable in many ways to other people all the time…. for our homes and cars ( the bank), our jobs and children and I am sure many other things. Commit to becoming accountable to YOU and then find support to make that happen!

By JJ Flizanes, Director of Invisible Fitness. We offer fitness training, fitness coaching, workshops and seminars and corporate programs.  http://www.invisiblefitness.com  800 571 5722