Tag Archives: Whole grain

If your goal is to eat well and/or lose weight stay clear of the CAN’T LIST and focus on your CAN LIST!

I had an interesting conversation with my walking buddy yesterday (thanks DJ) about diets and fitness regimens that either restrict certain foods or give you that all or nothing doctrine, such as you CAN”T eat carbs, protein, burgers or ice cream. There are also the CAN’Ts  you make up yourself, for example I CAN’T find time to workout, run a half marathon, do a spin class or boot camp. Here’s and idea use a CAN list! For some people, an all or nothing e.g. cold turkey approach works, but for most people this can lead to frustration and abandonment of their goal to become healthy.

Yes I Can

A CAN list is based on moderation and dedication and allowing yourself to be human.  Here is an example of a CAN’T and a CAN list.  Use them as guidelines for developing your own CAN list.

CAN’T List

CAN List

I can’t run!

You can walk, then run!

Read this

You can’t eat white pasta, only whole-wheat pasta!

You cat whole-wheat-and-white blend pasta.

Blends are great because they are less coarse and chewy than 100 percent whole-wheat varieties, while offering more nutrition than traditional white pasta. This is a good choice if you are trying to make the switch to whole-grain, but need a little more time to adjust the taste and texture of whole-wheat pasta.

You can’t eat sugar!

Well, sugar is in everything so in this case the type of sugar and moderation are key!

Aim for naturally occurring sugar found in fruits and whole grains while consuming your treats occasionally. Reducing your sugar intake can be difficult, but can be achieved with a little patience and dedication.

I can’t do indoor cycling/spinning!

Yes you can!

As with any activity you are trying for the first time you need to listen to your body. If you are trying spinning or indoor cycling, you should focus on building up your stamina.  As you start pedaling, choose a resistance setting that provides you with a challenge while still enabling you to pedal for at least 30 minutes. Aim to increase your resistance or speed by a little every time you are on the bike.

The key here is to get accustomed to the feel of the bike and to build a basic foundation for your new cycling lifestyle.  If you are taking a class, let the instructor know you are new to spinning so that they can help you with bike setup.

Top 5 Lunch Foods for Your Kids

In about a month our kids will be starting back to school, yeah!  To help with lunch packing I have compiled a list of the top lunch foods for kids.


Fruit taste good and is packed with vitamins, minerals, fiber and flavonoids, which function as antioxidants in your child’s body! Different colored fruits have different health benefits so include a variety, such as apples, bananas, blueberries, grapes, oranges, pineapple and strawberries for your kids.

Note – Apples, grapes and strawberries are on the list of dirty dozen foods likely to have high pesticide residue levels, so try to buy organic to avoid exposing your kid to potentially harmful chemicals.


Vegetables provide vital nutrients that are important for your child’s health, including potassium, fiber, folate (folic acid), vitamin A, and vitamin C. Find the ones your kids like to eat and add them to their lunches everyday. Remember to mix things up; carrots, snap peas, cherry tomatoes, sweet potato fries and kale chips are popular choices.

Note – Carrots and cherry tomatoes are also on the list of dirty dozen foods likely to have high pesticide residue levels, so buy organic when ever possible.

Simple Kale Chip Recipe

  1. Wash, dry and trim kale leaves
  2. Toss with olive oil and sea salt
  3. Cook in oven for eight minutes or so at 350 degrees

Whole Grains

Whole grains, in addition to fruits and vegetables, are an important source of fiber and other nutrients. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend that children age four to eight should eat 2 to 5 servings of whole grains a day and everyone age nine and up should consume 3 or more servings. Fill your child’s lunch with whole grain pasta or one of the blends that is part whole wheat and part white pasta. Also, try whole grain breads, for example whole grain pita bread.

Nuts and Seeds

Nuts and seeds are a delicious source of heart-healthy unsaturated fats. In addition, they contain protein and fiber, which along with unsaturated fat may help your child feel full longer. Include about a handful of nuts and seeds as a tasty treat for your kids lunch or mid-morning snack.

Make your own trail mix with ingredients including sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, pistachios, almonds or walnuts as well as raisins, dried cranberries, mangoes, apricots or shredded coconut.


Not only is cheese high in calcium, which can help keep kids teeth and bones strong, it also is a good source of protein and contains some essential vitamins and minerals, such as phosphorus, zinc, vitamins D and E.

Some kid-friendly cheeses that provide the most nutritional value would be cheddar, Parmesan, Swiss, mozzarella and string cheese.  If you what to watch your child’s fat intake stick to low fat or fat-free versions.

Please share any ideas you may have on good lunch foods for kids.