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Healthier Holiday Egg Nog


3 egg whites

2 cups soy milk

1/3 cup honey

½ tsp cinnamon (extra to sprinkle on top)

½ tsp nutmeg

1 tsp vanilla

Blend together and serve. Alcohol optional.


Nutrition Facts (before adding alcohol): 145 calories, 2g fat, 26g carb, 7g protein, 2g fiber, 57mg sodium

Traditional Eggnog is 223 calories and 14g of fat.

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Rutabaga Fries

Ingredients Rutabaga, root vegetable. Good source of Vitamin C & fiber. Choose those that are smooth, firm & heavy for size. Always peel before roasting, sautéing, etc.

1½ pounds rutabaga, peeled and cut into ½-inch thick wedges                                                  2 cups + 2 tablespoons white vinegar, divided                                                                               ½ cup water                                                                                                                                             2 teaspoons + 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

Dipping Sauce ½ cup ketchup, 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning, 1 teaspoon hot sauce


  1. Place rutabaga wedges into a large heat-safe bowl with tight fitting lid.
  2. In a medium saucepan, combine 2 cups of the vinegar, water and 2 teaspoons of salt in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over a high flame. Remove from heat and pour over prepared rutabaga.
  3. Secure lid onto bowl and store in the refrigerator for 2 to 4 hours.
  4. Preheat oven to 425° F. Coat two 12×16-inch baking sheets with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
  5. Drain rutabaga wedges in a large colander and spread evenly on prepared baking sheets. Bake for 25 minutes, flipping wedges halfway through to brown evenly.
  6. Meanwhile, combine all of the sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside. Remove fries from oven and transfer to a large mixing bowl.
  7. Toss with remaining vinegar and salt. Transfer to a serving plate alongside dipping sauce.
  8. Nutrition Information: Serves 4. Serving size: 1 cup fries and 2 tablespoon sauce. Calories: 97; Total fat: 0g; Saturated fat: 0g; Cholesterol: 0mg; Sodium: 1288mg; Carbohydrates: 21g; Fiber: 3g; Sugars: 14g; Protein: 2g; Potassium: 550mg; Phosphorus: 87mg Emily Cooper, RDN, is based in New Hampshire
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It’s the holi-DAYs

Follow these simple strategies to help prevent overeating through the holidays.

  • Don’t save up. Avoid skipping meals throughout the day to “save up” for the big meal or party. Skipping meals will result in overeating later.
  • Eat breakfast. Research shows that those who consume breakfast consume fewer calories throughout the day.
  • Increase fiber. High –fiber foods will satisfy hunger but are lower in calories. Choose fruits, vegetables and whole grains
  • Wait. It takes 20 minutes for satiety to be registered. Wait 10 minutes before reaching for seconds and let your body decide if it is still hungry or satisfied. Eat slowly and savor every bite. This will also allow for better digestion and decrease heartburn.
  • Healthy foods can still equal unhealthy portions. Moderation of all foods. Even if they are nutrient rich.
  • Enjoy without depriving or overindulging.
  • Use a smaller plate for your meals.
  • Name of the game is leftovers…. Cook once and eat twice.
  • At parties only consume food that is on a plate versus grazing at the buffet or hors d’oeuvres trays.
  • Enjoy the foods you only have during the holidays. Example skip the bread roll and go for the stuffing.
  • Liquids count. Especially alcohol
  • Hydrate. We often misconstrue thirst (dehydration) as hunger. Drink water between caffeinated and alcoholic beverages.
  • Buffets/potlucks. Take a small bite to try everything you would like to have. Then go back for the foods that really tasted amazing for your meal.
  • Out of sight, out of mind. Keep holiday treats in the pantry versus on the counter or in the freezer to defrost and enjoy later.
  •  Savor indulgent drinks. Treat them like a dessert. Sip.
  • Be careful when choosing mixers for drinks. The sweeter the mixer the more calories it generally will have.
  • Club soda over tonic.
  • Drink water in between alcoholic drinks to avoid dehydration.
    • Alcohol can pull 4 times the fluid from your body.
  • If you don’t like it, don’t finish it.
  • Basically, be mindful of what you are consuming to avoid overindulgence.

Our recommendation for the holidays is to pick the items you cannot indulge in all year long.              

Simple is Sustainable

What are your 3 holiday food, beverage, or treat favorites? Indulge without over indulging on everything.


2. ___________________________________________


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Chocolate Pudding

Yield: Serves 4-6 Prep Time: 10 minutes  Cook Time: 3 hour Chill Time

Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes


1 cup unsweetened almond or coconut milk 2 ripe avocados, peeled and pitted 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup 2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon Pinch of sea salt Raspberries, for garnish


  1. Put the almond milk, avocados, cocoa, maple syrup, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and salt into your blender and puree on high for 30 to 60 seconds, until smooth and creamy. You may need to stop and scrape down the sides with a spatula.
  2. Transfer the pudding to glasses, ramekins, or jars and chill in the fridge for at least 3 hours.
  3. To serve, top each pudding with fresh raspberries.

Note-the pudding works best with ripe avocados that don’t have any brown discolorations. The pudding is best the day it’s made, as the avocados will oxidize and the flavors will change over time.

Nutrition Facts: Calorie

s 188, Fat 9g, (sat fat 1.2g, mono 5.9g, poly 1.3g), Carb 5.4g, Fiber 4g, protein 1.2g

Recipe reprinted with permission from The Blender Girl: Super-Easy, Super-Healthy Meals, Snacks, Desserts, and Drinks–100 Gluten-Free, Vegan Recipes! by Tess Masters, copyright © 2014. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, IncDark Chocolate Pudding

Yield: Serves 4-6

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hour Chill Time

Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes

Deep dark chocolate pudding that is made with a secret ingredient…avocados!

  1. Put the almond milk, avocados, cocoa, maple syrup, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and salt into your blender and puree on high for 30 to 60 seconds, until smooth and creamy. You may need to stop and scrape down the sides with a spatula.
  2. Transfer the pudding to glasses, ramekins, or jars and chill in the fridge for at least 3 hours.
  3. To serve, top each pudding with fresh raspberries.

Note-the pudding works best with ripe avocados that don’t have any brown discolorations. The pudding is best the day it’s made, as the avocados will oxidize and the flavors will change over time.

Recipe reprinted with permission from The Blender Girl: Super-Easy, Super-Healthy Meals, Snacks, Desserts, and Drinks–100 Gluten-Free, Vegan Recipes! by Tess Masters, copyright © 2014. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, Inc.


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Slow Cooker Beef and Broccoli


1 pound boneless beef chuck roast, sliced into thin strips
1 cup beef consumme
1/2 cup soy sauce, low sodium
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon sesame oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons sauce from the crock pot after being cooked
Fresh broccoli florets (as many as desired)
Cooked brown rice

Extra kick, add red pepper flakes

1. Place beef in a crock pot.
2. In a small bowl, combine consomme, soy sauce, brown sugar, oil, and garlic. Pour over beef. Cook on low for 6-8 hours.
3. In a cup, stir cornstarch and sauce form the crock pot until smooth. Add to crock pot. Stir well to combine.
4. Add broccoli to the crock pot. Stir to combine.
5. Cover and cook an additional 30 minutes on high (the sauce has to boil for it to thicken).
6. Serve over hot cooked rice.


Nutrition: Calories 204, Fat 6.8g, Carb 16.8, Protein 19.6g


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Too Much of a Good Thing

By Randy Leopando

A little exercise is good for you, so more must be better, right? Well, sometimes. And sometimes more is just that — more. There comes a point of diminishing returns or, worse, a point where your body says “Enough!”

Everyone reaches this point at different times. Triathletes, for example, are able to withstand the rigors of three-sport training — running, cycling and swimming — at levels unthinkable to most. For others, an extra step class or hitting the weights too hard can put them over the top. In the quest for better health and fitness, it is sometimes difficult to quell one’s enthusiasm and take a break from exercise. But if exercise is leaving you more exhausted than energized, you could be suffering from an acute case of overtraining.

Know the Signs
It’s important to be able to recognize the signs of overtraining before they become chronic. Physical signs of overtraining include:

  • decreased performance
  • loss of coordination
  • prolonged recovery
  • elevated morning heart rate
  • elevated resting blood pressure
  • headaches
  • loss of appetite
  • muscle soreness/tenderness
  • gastrointestinal disturbances
  • decreased ability to ward off infection
  • increased incidence of musculoskeltal injuries
  • disturbed sleep patterns

Keep in mind that not all of the signs of overtraining are physical. Much like regular exercise has a positive effect on mood and stress levels, too much exercise can do just the opposite, leaving the exerciser irritable and depressed, particularly as the quality of the workouts declines. Psychological and emotional signs of overtraining include depression, apathy, difficulty concentrating, emotional sensitivity and reduced self-esteem.

Understand the Cause
Once you recognize the symptoms of overtraining, it’s important to understand and honestly confront the cause. For some, overtraining occurs as a result of an upcoming competition. Increased training prior to an event is understandable, but if it’s interfering with your health and wellbeing, you have to question its worth. The solution may be as easy as reducing the rate at which you increase your training intensity. The body needs sufficient time to adjust to your increased demands. Triathletes don’t start out running 10 miles, cycling 100 miles and swimming 1,000 meters all at once. They gradually increase their training to allow their bodies to adapt.

For others, the basis for overtraining may have more to do with emotional or psychological reasons than physical ones. Much like eating disorders, exercise addiction is now recognized as a legitimate problem. Exercising beyond the point of exhaustion, while injured, or to the exclusion of all other aspects of one’s life — these are some of the signs of exercise addiction. It’s a difficult problem to recognize, particularly in a culture where discipline and control are lauded.

Individuals who exercise excessively are risking more than poor performance: They’re risking their health. Overuse syndrome, which may lead to more serious injuries, is common. And the emotional cost of isolating oneself in order to exercise can be devastating. If you recognize these symptoms in yourself or in a friend, it is essential that you seek professional help.

The ‘M’ Word
The key, it seems, to staying healthy is to do everything in moderation, which is best viewed as something relative to one’s own fitness level and goals. Don’t expect to exercise an hour every day simply because your very fit friend does. The body needs time to adjust, adapt and, yes, even recuperate. Exercising to the point of overtraining is simply taking one step forward, two steps back — not exactly good training tactics.

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Exercise Pairings

When designing a workout, we take care to plan exercises that will compliment each other, allow you to perform every move well and promote balance. Here is an example of how to pair moves effectively that add up to a total body workout! Be sure to watch the demo for an explanation of why these exercises work well together and how to do them correctly.

Opposing movements below include: push/pull, opposing muscle groups, high vs low intensity, upper body/lower body, flexion/extension.

Push up – 12
Prone lat pull – 12
Good mornings – 12
Static Lunges -12 each side
Repeat set 3x
Burpees – 8
Inch worms – 8
Repeat x3
Rev sliding planks – 12
Squats with alt rotation – 20 total
Single leg v-up – 12 total
Superman – 10
Repeat 3x
Lateral bounds – 20
Alt Lateral lunge – 12 total
Repeat 3x
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Nutrient Food Pairings

Food and Nutrient variety – is key to a well-balanced, healthy diet.

Vitamin C can help the body absorb Iron.

Foods High In

Vit. C

Foods High in


  • Lemon Juice/Lean Red Meat
  • Oranges/Leafy Green Vegetables
  • Strawberries w/Tuna/Salmon
  • Bell Peppers w/ Beans/Nuts/Legumes
  • Sweet Potato w/Whole Grains

Calcium (from things like low-fat/nonfat dairy) decreases the absorption of Iron.


Plant-Based Proteins to make a Complete Protein

*Complete Protein provides all of the amino acids that the body needs for normal health and function.

    • Red Beans and Brown Rice
    • Whole Grain Bread and Peanut Butter
    • Chickpea hummus made w/ sesame tahini
    • Yogurt and Walnuts Pair Carbohydrates with Protein                         **They don’t have to be consumed at the same time to provide the benefit of a complete protein.


    • Help to raise and stabilize blood sugar/energy levels.
    • Optimum combination for recovery after exercise.
    • Feel full for longer than with Carb alone.


Sample Combinations:

    • Piece of Fruit with Hardboiled Egg
  • Low-fat/nonfat Greek Yogurt
  • Apple with Peanut Butter
  • Whole Grain Cracker and Low-fat String Cheese
  • Fruit and Cottage Cheese
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Taste Sensations

We all know our basic taste sensations: sweet, salty, sour, and bitter.  What about Umami?

Umami is a pleasant savory taste imparted by glutamate, a type of amino acid, which naturally occurs in many foods including meat, fish, vegetables and dairy products. The taste of umami is subtle and blends well with other tastes to expand and round out other flavors.

Umami Rich Foods


    • Tuna
    • seaweed
    • mackerel
    • Cod
    • Prawns
    • Squid
    • Oysters
    • Shellfish


  • Tomatoes
  • Shiitake mushrooms
  • Truffles
  • Soy beans
  • Potatoes
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Chinese cabbage
  • Carrots


  • Beef
  • Pork
  • Chicken


  • Parmesan cheese
  • Green tea
  • Soy sauce
  • Egg

Umami pairings that enhance Flavors!

Salmon & Cardamom

How to pair it: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Heat 2 tablespoons honey, 1 tablespoon orange juice, and 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom in a small saucepan over medium-low until honey is melted, about 1 minute. Place 4 center-cut salmon fillets skin side-down on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet and brush with half the cardamom mixture. Bake 5 minutes, brush on remaining glaze, and cook for another 5 minutes or until center of the fish is just cooked through. (Serves 4)


Avocado & cocoa  The creamy avocado and bitter cocoa pair well in puddings or ice cream. The key is to use fruit that are not too hard or too soft to avoid an overly strong avocado-y flavor.

How to pair it: Combine flesh of 2 avocados, 1 can (14 ounces) coconut milk, 1 large banana, 1/3 cup each honey and cocoa powder, 1 teaspoon each vanilla extract and cinnamon, and 1/8 teaspoon cayenne or chili powder in a blender until smooth. Chill mixture at least 4 hours, then process in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer’s directions. (Serves 6)

Beef & blueberries  Berries in burgers impart a sweetness that compliments the richness of the beef.

How to pair it: In a large bowl, mix 1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries (large berries halved), 2 chopped garlic cloves, 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard, 1 teaspoon each cumin powder and Worcestershire sauce, and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and black pepper. Add 1 pound ground sirloin and gently mix until just combined. Form into 4 patties and grill over medium-high heat for 5 minutes on each side or until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees. Serve on buns topped with favorite condiments and vegetables. (Serves 4)

Brie & peanut butter  Brie cheese and peanut butter turns an ordinary grilled cheese into a gooey, creamy masterpiece.

How to pair it: Spread 1 tablespoon each natural peanut butter and strawberry jam on a slice of crusty bread. Top with 1 ounce brie cheese, 1 handful arugula, and another slice bread. Heat olive or canola oil in a skillet over low heat. Add sandwich and heat until cheese is melted and bread is golden brown, about 2-3 minutes per side. (Serves 1)

Beets & Tahini   Beets lend traditional hummus more flavor as well as a vibrant color. Serve with crunchy sliced veggies, tortilla chips, or chunks of toasted pita.

How to pair it: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Wrap 3 beats tightly in aluminum foil, place on a baking sheet, and bake for 1 hour or until very tender. When cool enough to handle, scrub off skins with a paper towel. Purée in a food processor with 1 can (14 ounces) rinsed and drained chickpeas, 3 tablespoons tahini; 1 teaspoon each cumin, lemon zest, and lemon juice; 2 chopped garlic cloves; and 1/4 teaspoon salt until smooth. Transfer hummus to a serving bowl and garnish with crumbled goat cheese and chopped chives. (Serves 8)

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Carrot and Raisin Pancake

Ingredients ½ cup shredded carrots                                                                                                 1 teaspoon water                                                                                                                                     2 tablespoons raisins                                                                                                                               1 teaspoon brown sugar                                                                                                                          1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted and cooled                                                                             1 cup milk (unsweetened, non-dairy milks are fine, too)                                                                1 large egg                                                                                                                                                 1 cup white whole-wheat flour                                                                                                               1½ teaspoons baking powder                                                                                                               1 teaspoon cinnamon                                                                                                                            ¼ teaspoon salt                                                                                                                              Maple syrup and/or fresh berries (optional accompaniments)


  1. Melt 1 tablespoon of butter and put it into a small bowl. Place with a brush near the stove or griddle.
  2. Heat an 8-inch frying pan (or use a pancake griddle) on low heat while you prepare other ingredients.
  3. In a small microwaveable bowl, combine carrots and water. Microwave for 30 seconds, or until carrots are slightly soft and pliable. Mix in the raisins and brown sugar. Set aside.
  4. In another small bowl, mix together the butter, milk and egg until incorporated.
  5. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt.
  6. Incorporate the wet ingredients into the flour mixture, using the whisk to fold in the ingredients. Fold in the carrot-raisin mixture with the whisk. (It’s OK if there are some small lumps in the batter.)
  7. Increase heat under frying pan to medium-low and brush some melted butter onto the pan; the butter should start to gently bubble.
  8. Pour 1⁄4 cup pancake mixture onto the pan and cook for about 3-4 minutes. When the middle of the pancake bubbles, use a thin metal spatula to flip the pancake. Continue to cook for another 2-3 minutes, or until light brown.

Tip: You can freeze these and reheat in the microwave (about a minute each) for a quick and easy breakfast.

Nutritional Information Serving size: 6-inch pancake Calories 102; Total fat 3g; Sat. fat 2g; Chol. 30mg; Sodium 193mg; Carb. 16g; Fiber 2g; Sugars 4g; Protein 4g; Potassium 150mg; Phosphorus 119mg


Food & Nutrition Magazine, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

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