The Updated Food Pyramid: My Plate

food_pyramid_gov

The USDA has mad a change to the food pyramid that we all grew up with and got to know pretty well. The changes are interesting and I thought I would share them here for everybody’s benefit.

The pyramid has been replaced with a plate. Gone are the recommendations for x number of this or that. In are portion sizes and variety in each meal. I actually like the change, because I think it is simple.

Here is the new graphic of the plate.

ht_new_food_plate_nt_110602_wmainAs you can see, the plate is comprised of the same basics as the pyramid, but the interesting thing is that it now includes subtle portion sizes. If you notice, fruits and vegetables now cover half of the plate with vegetables being slightly larger than fruits. Same on the other side with grains and proteins. Grains being slightly larger than proteins. Why you might ask? Nutritionists now believe that we should be consuming more vegetables than fruits and more grains than proteins.

The plate also is intended to discourage large portions which can lead to obesity.

Remember, the plate can be used at every meal, but this doesn’t mean that you have to have vegetables for breakfast. Think variety with the plate. Target filling as many as possible at each meal.

For more information, jump over to ChooseMyPlate.gov! At the very bottom of the page, there are descriptions of each of the food groups and what they consider proteins, dairy, and grains. Healthy eating leads to long life!

Zoodles

Zoodles ~ The Peachy Pair

At my Pampered Chef show back in June, one of my prizes was a spiralizer.  What is a spiralizer, you ask?  So glad you did!

A spiralizer makes spirals!  You can take a vegetable, oh say, I don’t know, a zucchini, and twist the little contraption and you have spiralized noodles.  A.K.A., zoodles! 

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I had been wanting to try out this little toy since I first read some of my fellow bloggers were trying them (including Gina over at skinnytaste.com).  The good folks over at Better Homes and Gardens posted a recipe in August of 2014 for Garlicky Zucchini Noodles that fit the bill!

I made this to go along side the Mini Cheesy Meat Loafs and it was the perfect pairing!

Zoodles

  • 2 medium zucchini
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
  • 1/2 chopped walnuts
  • Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 medium Honeycrisp apple (or other tart apple)
  • 4 ounces goat cheese

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Cut the zucchini to fit into the spiralizer.  Make noodles with the tool, or slice thinly with a knife or mandolin. 

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In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat.  If large, cut garlic cloves in half lengthwise.  Add to oil, stirring for 2 minutes or until starting to brown. 

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Add zucchini noodles and toss for about a minute. 

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Transfer to a medium bowl. 

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Add walnuts to the skillet and cook for about 2 minutes. 

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Add to zucchini mixture. 

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Season with crushed red pepper and salt.  Add apple

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and crumble goat cheese. 

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Toss to combine. 

Zoodles ~ The Peachy Pair

Zoodles
Serves 4
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
15 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
5 min
Total Time
15 min
183 calories
11 g
13 g
13 g
7 g
5 g
183 g
114 g
7 g
0 g
7 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
183g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 183
Calories from Fat 116
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g
20%
Saturated Fat 5g
26%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 6g
Cholesterol 13mg
4%
Sodium 114mg
5%
Total Carbohydrates 11g
4%
Dietary Fiber 2g
9%
Sugars 7g
Protein 7g
Vitamin A
11%
Vitamin C
35%
Calcium
7%
Iron
6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. • 2 medium zucchini
  2. • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  3. • 6 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
  4. • 1/2 chopped walnuts
  5. • Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  6. • 1 medium Honeycrisp apple (or other tart apple)
  7. • 4 ounces goat cheese
Instructions
  1. Cut the zucchini to fit into the spiralizer. Make noodles with the tool, or slice thinly with a knife or mandolin. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. If large, cut garlic cloves in half lengthwise. Add to oil, stirring for 2 minutes or until starting to brown. Add zucchini noodles and toss for about a minute. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add walnuts to the skillet and cook for about 2 minutes. Add to zucchini mixture. Season with crushed red pepper and salt. Add apple and crumble goat cheese. Toss to combine.
Notes
  1. The zoodles can be kind of long. Either cut the zucchini in small chunks to put in the spiralizer or cut the noodles down after making the noodles.
beta
calories
183
fat
13g
protein
7g
carbs
11g
more
Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens August 2014 Garlicky Zucchini Noodles
The Peachy Pair http://www.thepeachypair.com/

Southern Smoq BBQ

I have to divert away from the healthy tilt of this blog to mention a place we just ate at on Saturday night. Jenny and I took a date night out with a planned activity. We were going to a painting class at Masterpiece Mixers, a local spot that you paint a picture with some direction, but you get to create in your own style. Click on their name if you would like more information about them, they were awesome!

masterpiece+mixers+camp1Before that, we needed a place to eat in the area so we could just bop over to the painting class afterwards. Jenny’s brother had mentioned a place called Southern Smoq to us a while back, but you know how that goes. Been to one BBQ, been to them all….. Well not this one.

I’m a little upset that we didn’t get some pictures of the dishes. Presentation wasn’t all that, but the food was. Both Jenny and I were amazed at first bite. I did steal one from online so you would get the feel.

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Jenny had a simple pulled pork sandwich with a side of mac n cheese. I didn’t sample the sandwich, but she said it was the best she had ever eaten. It was moist and full of flavor.

I had a half rack of ribs with okra and mac n cheese (do you see a trend here….). While this place has a variety of sauces to choose from, I didn’t add a bit of it. The ribs fell off the bone and were seasoned with a little crust of spices blended to perfection. A tad spicy, but just right. The okra was to die for. Best since my mom’s homemade stuff. Jenny doesn’t like okra, but she did like this. The owner even said that he has converted a few with it. I believe him!

The place is unassuming as it is in the end of a grocery store strip mall, but once you open the door and the aroma hits you, you forget all about looks.

Check this place out the next time you are in the area.

Logo

Southern Smoq BBQ
7380 Spout Springs Rd #450,
Flowery Branch, GA
30542
(770) 965-3900

Grilled Tomato Spread and Cheese Sandwiches

Grilled Tomato Spread and Cheese Sandwich

Grilled cheese sandwiches.  Pimento cheese sandwiches.  And now, grilled tomato spread and cheese sandwiches. 

The Cooking Light October 2014 issues has a whole section on cheese.  I plan to cook a few recipes from this edition instead of my normal one and I started with Grilled Cheese with Roasted Tomato Spread. 

While these did require a little bit of work, they were worth it.  I made a batch and was able to make leftovers as well.  I even ate one for breakfast one day!

Grilled Tomato Spread and Cheese Sandwiches

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 4 plum tomatoes, halved and seeded
  • 2 garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 6-8 basil leaves
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil mayonnaise
  • 2 ounces low fat cream cheese
  • 4 ounces reduced fat sharp cheddar, grated
  • 8 slices whole grain bread
  • Cooking spray

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Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Place tomato and garlic cloves on a baking sheet.  Drizzle with 1 teaspoon oil. 

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Bake for 20 minutes.  Let sit to cool slightly. 

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Meanwhile, combine mayonnaise, cream cheese, and cheddar in a medium bowl. 

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Peel tomatoes and garlic.  In a mini food processor, add tomato, garlic, basil, salt, and pepper. 

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Pulse about 10 times. 

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Add mixture to the cheese mixture

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and stir until well combined. 

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Heat a skillet over medium heat.  Spray with cooking spray.  Spread mixture on half bread slices

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and top with remaining slices.  Place  in pan and cook for three minutes.  Spray the top of sandwich with cooking spray.  Turn over and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.  Cut in half and enjoy!

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Grilled Tomato Spread and Cheese Sandwich
Serves 4
Make the sandwiches as you are going to eat them. For leftovers, refrigerate the cheese spread.
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
26 min
Total Time
36 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
26 min
Total Time
36 min
381 calories
37 g
37 g
20 g
16 g
9 g
234 g
591 g
8 g
0 g
10 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
234g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 381
Calories from Fat 173
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 20g
30%
Saturated Fat 9g
43%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 8g
Cholesterol 37mg
12%
Sodium 591mg
25%
Total Carbohydrates 37g
12%
Dietary Fiber 5g
20%
Sugars 8g
Protein 16g
Vitamin A
28%
Vitamin C
29%
Calcium
38%
Iron
27%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  2. • 4 plum tomatoes, halved and seeded
  3. • 2 garlic cloves, unpeeled
  4. • 6-8 basil leaves
  5. • Salt
  6. • Freshly ground black pepper
  7. • 4 teaspoons olive oil mayonnaise
  8. • 2 ounces low fat cream cheese
  9. • 4 ounces reduced fat sharp cheddar, grated
  10. • 8 slices whole grain bread
  11. • Cooking spray
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place tomato and garlic cloves on a baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 teaspoon oil. Bake for 20 minutes. Let sit to cool slightly. Meanwhile, combine mayonnaise, cream cheese, and cheddar in a medium bowl. Peel tomatoes and garlic. In a mini food processor, add tomato, garlic, basil, salt, and pepper. Pulse about 10 times. Add mixture to the cheese mixture and stir until well combined. Heat a skillet over medium heat. Spray with cooking spray. Spread mixture on half bread slices and top with remaining slices. Place in pan and cook for three minutes. Spray the top of sandwich with cooking spray. Turn over and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes. Cut in half and enjoy!
beta
calories
381
fat
20g
protein
16g
carbs
37g
more
Adapted from Cooking Light October 2014
The Peachy Pair http://www.thepeachypair.com/

 

Drop The Pounds part 4: Burn baby burn

burn_calories

Sorry for the week delay. I got pretty busy and Jenny had to fill in and blog last week for me. 

Let’s see, a couple of weeks ago I had you logging calories in your food logs. By now you should be finding it almost second nature. It would be possible for you to start getting a daily average of your normal intake as it is now. I also had you recording your activities. Your calorie burn for these activities can be recorded in a similar way to your food calories. Just look up the burn on one of the many sites I posted in the last edition of the series.

2011-0414-CaloriesLog

Your daily calorie intake and your burn plus your BMR make up your daily calorie picture. 

One pound of body fat is roughly equivalent to 3500 calories. So, here is where the little bit of math enters……

If you want to lose a safe and healthy 0.5 pounds a week, you would divide the 3500 calories by 2 to get half a pound and then by 7 days to get 250 calories a day. This is the daily calorie deficit that you want to achieve.

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Let’s have an example:

Let’s assume your BMR is 1500 calories. if you walk pretty briskly for 30 minutes each day then you would add roughly 200 calories to your BMR giving you a daily burn of 1700 calories. Remember, you do more in a day besides sleep and walk 30 min. Don’t forget to add in working, driving, playing with your kids, etc. from there you want to subtract out your daily deficit. 1700 – 250 is 1350. This means you could eat 1350 calories each day and lose a pound every 2 weeks!

1200 calories should be a bare minimum consumption for any adult. If you do more exercise, you get more calories!

calorie

That’s really it! Pretty simple and easy to follow. 

Now, those sites that I listed on part 3 of this series come back into play. Many of them have apps for smartphones that can help you dramatically. Some will save you time and some offer diverse online groups that will offer support along the way if you need the help. 

Try what works for you, manual or electronic tracking. Try the other, too. 

Last but not least, let us know how you are doing, if you have a question, or just need a word of encouragement. If you read our blog, we already love you and call you family. That’s what family does for each other.

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PS. I’m still not a doctor, this is all stuff I’ve come to know from research, practice, and patience. I recommend to still talk to a real doctor before getting heavily into a new workout or diet routine.