10 Nutritious Tips for Holiday Parties

The holidays are my favorite time of year. Between the Christmas decorations, spending time with friends and family and the parties, so fun and food to be had! Ah I just love it! However keep these tips on mind to keep you happy,and  healthy this holiday season!  
Holiday eating tips

Tip #1: Do not stand near the buffet table. Once you get the food you want, STEP AWAY. Go eat in a different room. This way you will be less tempted to grab more food.

Tip #2: While at the party, hold your drink in your dominant hand: right hand if you’re right handed, left hand if you’re left handed. This will make you think twice before grabbing another cookie or bite of spinach dip!!

Tip #3: Rest up the night before a holiday party by getting at least seven to eight hours of sleep. A short night’s sleep can cause adults to add an extra 300 calories and choose higher-fat, higher-calorie foods. By getting enough sleep, you’ll save calories and make healthier choices.

Tip #4: Choose your first round of food at a buffet wisely. You’ll consume the largest quantity of the foods you eat first, so set yourself up for success by starting with something low-calorie like fresh veggies or hummus instead of a creamy dip. And, swap crackers and breads for veggies. Avoid piling on the cheese. While cheese contains protein, it can be higher in calories, especially when we are eating a lot of it.

Tip #5: Count 1-2-3 when pouring yourself a glass of wine, to get an estimated 5-ounce serving. Choose calorie free beverages as mixers or to drink, so you can eat your calories and not drink them. Also pay attention to your hot drinks!

Egg Nog before adding alcohol: About 350 calories and nearly 12 grams of fat per cup VS. Hot chocolate w/out whipped cream: About 190 calories and nearly 6 grams of fat per cup

Tip #6: Downsize your plate to trick your brain into thinking you are eating more. Use an appetizer or salad plate instead of a dinner plate where you will find yourself eating less than half and cutting over 1,000 calories.

Tip #7: Take smaller sips and bites to trick your brain into eating fewer calories. It’s ok to nibble.  Research has shown that multitasking during meals can lead to mindlessly eating and increasing calorie consumption. If you’re chatting at a party, set your food down until you are done chatting.

Tip #8: Choose your indulgences wisely. Allow yourself to have the treats, but don’t go crazy. By allowing yourself to have a little here and there you are less likely to binge.

Tip #9: Choose items that are seasonal verses those you can have year round. Focusing on the special foods this time of year will make it seem more like a treat. Save the calories for these instead.

Tip #10: Enjoy in moderation. Treat yourself, and if you go overboard focus the next day on healthy eating. One party or meal is not going to wreck your diet.

What are your holiday party tips and secrets?? 





Smoothies in November??

So I have not gone crazy, but you can still drink smoothies when it’s cold out! Earlier this week, on Fox2, we discussed how to keep your smoothie healthy and made a delicious smoothie. Take a look:

Fox 2 smoothie segment


They are excellent snacks and meal replacements during the busy on the go days during fall. Whenever we heard the word smoothie, we typically think, oh healthy food, sign me up. However, we may be thinking we are making a healthy smoothie, when in actuality we have made a sugary, fat laden, high calorie drink that can have a negative impact on your health.

Take a look at these tips to help keep your smoothie a healthy treat and not a high calorie dessert.

Start with a good base:

    • Greek yogurt excellent source of: calcium, potassium, protein, zinc, and vitamins B6 and B12. It is also thicker than your other yogurts and will provide a nice creamy base.
    • Cow’s milk: excellent source of calcium, vitamin D, and protein. Increase calcium intake can increase bone and teeth health as well as keep you hydrated.
    • almond milk:  rich in nutrients, including fiber, vitamin E, magnesium, zinc, potassium, iron, copper and calcium it also has fewer calories than cow or soy milk, meaning that it is usually lower in fat, carbohydrates, and protein. If you are planning to add spinach or dark green leafy vegetables, this is a good choice as the calcium will not interfere with iron absorption.
    • Fruit juice: use with caution, as it is higher in sugar and calories. If you are adding fruit, let the fruit sweeten the smoothie not the fruit juice.

Add some fruit or vegetables:

  • Spinach: adding spinach or greens to your smoothie is an easy way to increase vegetable intake as well as increasing how much iron you consume.
  • Fruits: can be delicious, but keep in mind, the more you add the more calories you are packing into your smoothie. Tip: Stick to 3 or less types of fruit; also use frozen fruit, that way you don’t have to add ice.
  • For a fall treat, add pumpkin! Pumpkin is higher in fiber which can improve your digestive health, boost your immunity from added vitamins and minerals, and help your eyesight.
  • For a fall treat, can add pumpkin to the recipe

If needed add protein.

  • If you need to increase your protein intake, protein powders, nut butters, and nuts and seeds are good choices.

Watch the extras:

Extra protein powder, nut and nut butters, avocado, chia or flax seeds and other healthy ingredients can increase calories. For example adding 1 tablespoon of peanut butter adds an extra 100 calories.

Finally do a calorie count:

In your mind rough calculate how much of each food you have added. If your smoothie is replacing a meal around 400 calories is a good goal. If your smoothie is a snack keep the calories around 200. An easy to do a quick calorie count is to measure.

For a tasty fall treat, try a Pumpkin spice smoothie. It’s absolutely delicious!!!




❓Question of the day: what’s your favorite smoothie?⁉️

Pumpkin spice smoothie

Makes 1 smoothie


1/2 cup pumpkin (canned or freshly cooked)

1/2 Banana

6 ounces Total 0% Nonfat Greek Yogurt

1/2 cup almond milk

15g Vanilla Protein Powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice


Blend all ingredients together

Nutrition facts:

Calories: 323

Total Fat: 3.0g

Total carbohydrate: 39g

Protein: 37.8g


“On October 3rd, he asked me what day it was”

Happy October 3rd!!!


It’s October!! I have no idea where September went but I am welcoming October with open arms. It finally feels like fall. My pumpkin obsession is now no longer looked at as odd but totally acceptable. Speaking of which, if you have not tried Pilgim Joe’s (TJ’s is so clever ha) Pumpkin ice cream, you are missing out. It’s a nice pumpkiny treat.


Anyways I digress. October is a great month to get in some last minute  races before it gets too cold, shaping up your diet before the holidays, and enjoying the  beautiful fall weather.

I plan on making the most of this October, there are some suggestions to spice up your October:

Recipes I plan on trying:

Bacon Butternut Pasta

Spiced Pumpkin biscuits

Sage Bison Burgers

Stuffed Acorn Squash 

Crock Pot sweet potato and Quinoa Turkey Chili

Bacon ans Brussels Sprout Carbonara

**These are not my recipes, the title will take to their owners sites :)**

October is also Breast Cancer awareness month. This is near and dear to my heart and if you have a chance to get involved with any of the events this month please do!! If you live in Saint Louis, October 8th is Dine out for the Cure night. Participating restaurants can be found here.

So what’s so special about October 3rd??

Besides reminding you of Mean girls this also happened:

42 B.C. -First Battle of Philippi: Triumvirs Mark Antony and Octavian fight an indecisive battle with Caesar’s assassins Brutus and Cassius.

1920 – NFL (then American Pro Football Association) plays 1st games

1940 – Reds beat Tigers ending NL’s 10-game World Series losing streak

1955 – “Mickey Mouse Club” premieres

1976 – Hank Aaron singles in his last at bat & drives in his 2,297th run

2003 – Roy Horn of Siegfried & Roy is attacked by one of the shows tigers, canceling the show for good

Last but not least, have fun!! My October is chalk full of fun:  Colorado Avalanche vs Minnesota wild home opener in CO, half marathon (woot, woot!!), lots of football cardinals baseball, and most excitingly a PUPPY!!!!!! This lady is getting a little miss to be her side kick 🙂

Enjoy your October 3rd, after all it’s practically a holiday.


What are you planning on doing with your October?!



Dash of dinner: Sweet Potato Goodness

Happy September!! I think I say this almost every month but I can’t believe it’s September!  September means football, leaves changing, cooler weather and fall!! I’m pretty excited that fall is around the corner. My basic self is about to emerge: PSL’s boots, scarves, leggings…a6153fb7af862a1527702cc8a6a59ee0meme found here

In the spirit of fall, I was craving something for dinner that was fallish but still delicious while it’s 90 degrees here in Saint Louis.

I found this recipe by tablefortwoblog.com and the original recipe can be found here. I tweaked the recipe to have chicken and  some sliced jalapeños to add some pop.  What I like about this dish: it’s full of vegetables, protein, This is a nice quick meal that can be made in about 20 minutes. Cooking the chicken in advance will help speed up the preparation time. Here is my version of Vegetable and Chicken Stuffed Potatoes.


Vegetable and Chicken Stuffed Potatoes

Makes 1 Potato


1 Large Sweet Potato

1/2 medium zucchini, shredded ( about 1/2-2/3rds cup)

1 medium carrot chopped

1/2 cup chopped mushrooms

1/4 yellow onion chopped

1 medium chicken breast shredded

Optional sliced jalapeños ( about 1/4 cup)

1/4 teaspoon cumin

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

salt and pepper to season

olive oil


1.  Cook or grill chicken breast

2. Poke potato with a fork 8-10 times. Depending on the size of your potato and your microwave, cook the potato for about 4 minutes. The potato should be soft but not too squishy when you touch it. Once the potato is done, slice potato in half, but do not cut in half.

3. While the potatoes are cooking, heat an oiled skillet and cook the zucchini, mushrooms, and carrots until soft about 10 minutes. Add in the shredded chicken, jalapeños if wanted, and seasonings.

4. Once potato is cool, scoop out about 1/2- 3/4s of the potato and add to skillet.

5. Once potato is evenly mixed, scoop the mixture into the stuffed potato and Enjoy!!

Nutrition information

376 calories, 4.2g fat,232, mg sodium, 52.8g carbohydrate, 10.8g fiber, and 34.6g protein



(disclaimer I did not make this recipe I give 100% credit to tablefortwoblog.com and made some minor adjustments)

What are you looking forward to about September?



What I learned from this weekend

Happy Monday!! What a whirlwind of a weekend it has been. The weekend was filled with good friends and a crossfit competition. I did not compete ( not quite sure I want to take that plunge) but got to judge and volunteer. This was kind of a different experience, I usually am the athlete, but it was a good experience to not be the competitor. 

Here is what I learned from this: 

  1. Counting can be tricky. Sometimes your head will bob so much while counting you get dizzy.
  2. I think as athletes, retired athletes, competitors or whatever you are, we expect a lot out of those people running the event. Well as the judge I expected a lot out of the athletes too. You never want to see someone struggle or have to repeat repetitions. Calling someone out on their mistakes makes them better. 
  3. Don’t give up. Just when you think you can’t do anymore, you find a way to get one more rep. 
  4. I have never felt more sore from standing around all day. Darn you hard concrete floors.
  5. Small victories are just important as the big ones and shouldn’t be overlooked. So many times we get bogged down focusing on 1 thing that we miss the little achievements along the way. 
  6. Support,  believing, and communication. These are extremely important elements of a successful team.
  7. Watching people workout all day is good motivation to get your butt back in the gym and working out. 

What did you  learn from the weekend??



Holy Guacamole it’s Monday

Happy Monday!!

It’s always crazy how fast the weekends fly by and before we know it, the alarm is going off and it’s Monday.  Well here’s to a new week!! Over the weekend I was craving guacamole. I have made some excellent guac, and have had some epic guac fails. These fails usually come from not following a recipe and me trying to be Giada or Bobby Flay and getting creative. Well I have found a recipe that needs no changing. I realize that I’m bit behind to making this recipe, but surprise it’s Chipotle’s guac recipe!!


Image found here

This guac is AMAZING. It’s simple and quick to make, and just delicious!  Here’s why you should eat avocados:

  • They are heart healthy. Avocados are high in monounsaturated fat, the good fat that helps lower your bad cholesterol or LDL cholesterol. Avocados also contain plant sterols which also help your good cholesterol.
  • Avocados are good for your eyes. They contain 2 carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin, that help slow down age related eye issues.
  • Keep your bones strong. Avocados are high in vitamin K. Vitamin K can help increase calcium absorption.
  • Cancer fighter. Avocados are a good source of folate. Eating food high in folate can help decrease the risk of developing breast, colon, stomach, pancreatic, and cervical cancers.
  • It keeps you regular. Avocados contain approximately 6-7 grams of fiber per half. This also will promote weight loss by keeping you feeling full longer.

The recipe can be found on Chipotle’s website


If you haven’t tried this guac yet, go buy some avocados, red onions, cilantro, and jalapeños and make yourself a batch. You won’t regret it!!



TBT to when I blogged

Remember when I used to blog more often, typed out insightful witty nutrition info, and would post delicious recipes?? Yeah I’m having a hard time remembering as well. Whoops well guess what… I’mmm baaackkk 🙂 And for this first post back, we’re going to talk about something that is important in the month of August, hydration. I admit I do a horrible job of drinking enough water.  There are days when I have to force myself to drink water. Well, what if I told you you can get hydrated by foods you eat. Kind of a crazy thought, but if you think about it, some foods are kind of a no brainer like watermelon. It literally has water in the name. As shocking as this is, I have had a patient who did not realize that the watermelon he was eating was causing him to go over his fluid restriction. #palmtoforehead #dietitianfail

Anyways you can eat your way to hydration!!! Here’s how!!!


The deets: The old adage of drinking 8 glasses of water a day to stay hydrated resonates in many minds, however this myth has been debunked. The Institute of medicine recommends that general fluid intake for men be 15+ cups a day, women 11+ cups a day, children aged 9 to 13 7 to 8 cups of fluid per day, and teenagers aged 14 to 18 8 and 11 cups.

About 80% of our water intake comes from what we drink, while the other 20% comes from what we eat. Choosing foods that are higher in water content can help increase fluid consumption keeping you hydrated and happy.


Foods to eat:

  • Watermelon

Not surprisingly watermelon is high in water, containing 91.5% water. This fruit also contains lycopene a cancer fighting antioxidant.

  • Cucumbers

This vegetable has the highest water content of any vegetable at 96.7%. in a half of cup of cucumbers ½ of this is water (1/4 cup) and only has 8 calories per ½ cup. Cucumbers also provide vitamin A that helps with eyesight.

  • Celery

Celery is often thought to be the negative calorie food, which isn’t true however it is very low in calories and high in water. It contains 95.4% water and only 6 calories per stalk. Not only is it high in water, it also contains fiber, folate, vitamins A, C, and K.

  • Cantaloupe

Cantaloupe is one of the juiciest melons containing 90.2% water. One 6 ounce serving contains 50 calories and provides your daily needs of vitamin A and C.

  • Various vegetables: bell peppers, cauliflower, broccoli, and carrots

These colorful vegetables each provide >90% water content. Choose green peppers which contain a little bit more water and just as much vitamins and minerals as the other peppers. Cauliflower is full of water and vitamins and nutrients to help fight cancer and lower cholesterol. Broccoli fives the 2 punch of fiber and water, to keep you full and hydrated.

start eating those fruits and veggies!!