<![CDATA[Ilana's Piece--<br />Nourishing Mind, Body, & Soul - A Healthy Foodie]]>Fri, 12 Feb 2016 22:44:27 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[Stuffed Yet Slimming Balsamic Chicken]]>Tue, 09 Oct 2012 17:05:02 GMThttp://ilanaspiece.weebly.com/a-healthy-foodie/stuffed-yet-slimming-balsamic-chickenAs the cold air sets in and the holiday festivities begin, we tend to reach for all things comfort. Big blankets, cozy sweaters, and hearty, warm meals that make us feel at peace. Yet come next March when stores begin displaying bathing suits and fun spring fashions, we may regret the many holiday cookies, slices of pie, and legs of turkey we consumed. My mission this season is to create recipes that provide us the sensation of comfort and warmth without the guilt or extra resulting pounds!

This past Sunday, I invited my parents over for dinner. It was the first meal we would share together in my new place and I felt this celebratory occasion deserved a new recipe. In keeping with my mantra of clean, healthy, balanced eating, I developed a chicken dish that was sure to please: chicken breasts marinated in a savory mix of balsamic and herbs, stuffed with sautéed onions, spinach, and garlic herb cheese. Are you drooling yet? Just wait until you try it! I paired this dish alongside a large salad full of fresh vegetables, but it would be great with brown rice, roasted fall and winter produce like butternut squash and potatoes, or atop whole wheat pasta with a touch of tomato sauce. I promise no matter what you choose to pair it with, this chicken dish will delight the senses, satiate a roaring appetite, and leave you with a svelte figure throughout the winter months! 

Stuffed Yet Slimming Balsamic Chicken: (Serves 4)

The Marinade:

1 Tsp. Olive Oil
2 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar
1 Tsp. Chopped Garlic (or 2 cloves chopped)
2-3 Pinches of Dried Rosemary
Fresh Ground Pepper
2 Pinches of Dried Basil
1 Pinch of Dried Oregano

The Stuffing:

½ Organic Yellow Onion, chopped
8 ounces Frozen Organic Spinach, thawed and drained
2 Laughing Cow Garlic Herb Cheese Wedges
Fresh Ground Pepper, to taste
Optional Additions: 2 Tbsp. Chopped Walnuts and/or Dried Cranberries

Additional Items:

4 Organic Chicken Breasts, about 6 oz. each, trimmed of excess fat
100% Organic Olive Oil Cooking Spray
8 Toothpicks

Instructions:

1.     Place four, trimmed, chicken breasts into a large plastic, food storage or freezer bag. Using a meat mallet or hammer, pound the chicken to tenderize and thin it out.

2.     In a second food storage bag, combine all ingredients for the marinade. Then add in the chicken, seal the bag while making sure to press the extra air out, and toss the chicken. Massage the marinade into each breast.  Be thorough with this step and honor those breasts, after all it is Breast Cancer Awareness month!! Now refrigerate the marinating chicken for a couple hours or overnight.

3.     After the chicken is finished marinating, lay the breasts out on a large plate and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

4.      Coat a medium sauté pan with cooking spray, and sauté the chopped onion until soft and slightly brown. Next, add in the spinach, cheese wedges, and ground pepper.  While stirring, allow the cheese to melt and all the ingredients to combine.

5.     Divide the filling into four equal portions and spoon onto each chicken breast. Roll each breast up and secure with two toothpicks. 
Place the stuffed breasts into a baking pan that has a thin layer of water at the bottom. (This will allow the chicken to steam and retain its moisture while cooking.) 
Cover with foil and bake in the oven for 35 minutes. Then, remove the foil and bake an additional three to five minutes.

6.     All that is left to do now…is enjoy!!
Picture





Nutritional Information (without nuts or cranberries)
:

Calories: 240

Fat: 4 grams

Carbohydrates: 6.5 grams

Fiber: 2 grams

Protein: 42 grams


]]>
<![CDATA[Squashed for Greater Sustainability!]]>Tue, 24 Apr 2012 00:39:17 GMThttp://ilanaspiece.weebly.com/a-healthy-foodie/squashed-for-greater-sustainability       A Winning Recipe! My NBC Today Show Debut on 7/9/12
In light of the fact that this past Sunday was Earth Day, I wanted to focus this post on a few simple swaps I have implemented in order to leave a smaller ecological footprint and play a role in helping create a healthier and more sustainable environment, specifically in and around the kitchen. I have “squashed” a few of my old ways, which were less eco-friendly and adopted more conscientious habits that I feel are definitely feasible, reasonable changes. I challenge you to peruse the following ideas and select one to try out. You may find making the switch is incredibly easy and if not, at least try the included squash recipe because it is a total winner and though not a bad habit, at least you will be able to say you squashed something, right?
  • B.Y.O.B! No, I am not advocating for the consumption of alcohol to better our world! The acronym here stands for “Bring Your Own Bag.”  To avoid the excessive amounts of paper and plastic bags they use to pack your groceries at the supermarket, bring your own reusable tote bags. I tend to always keep one or two in my car in the event I need to unexpectedly stop at the store. Additionally, if you pack your lunch, invest in a nice lunch sack and a few storage containers, which reduces waste that ends up in landfills. A bonus: many are insulated, which helps to keep the food fresh and at the proper temperature! If you do happen to have an abundance of plastic bags lying around, do not toss them in the trash, but rather, try finding ways to reuse them. Whether that be on a walk with the dog for “waste management,” or in smaller trash cans throughout your home. 
  • Recycle, People! It pains me to see individuals toss cans, glass, and plastic bottles in the trash when just a few steps further is a receptacle for recyclables. Take the extra step, as that plastic and aluminum can be melted down and transformed into another product. What would be even better than that? Invest in a BPA free bottle and fill it up with your own filtered water!
  • Clean Green! Turn the faucet off while scrubbing the dishes and you will conserve quite a bit of water. If you choose to run the dishwasher, wait until it is completely full before doing so. Try using natural products to clean that are devoid of harmful toxins, which penetrate the air. For example, I recently discovered through a Pinterest post that ammonia does an incredible job cleaning stovetop grates and burners. Baking soda, white vinegar, lemon juice, and club soda are also used frequently as all-natural remedies for common kitchen messes.
Of course this list is by no means exhaustive, but it would take me days to run through the possibilities! So I’ll leave it there for now and move onto the recipe, which also involves “squashing” and swapping! If you have recommendations or ways you personally have become greener, I encourage you to share by commenting on this post!

Now, everyone loves a bowl of pasta, but the truth is, one serving (1 cup cooked) possesses a high amount of calories (180-210) and carbohydrates (35-45) while not leaving me very satisfied. The swappable solution? Spaghetti Squash! This vegetable has just 42 calories per cup and 10 carbohydrates. It’s good on the lips and hips! On this Earth Day, to honor the abundant, beautiful, nutritious vegetables our planet provides, I made a “Pasta” primavera dish. It was quite simple and I must admit that the flavors were so incredible, I ate it a little more quickly than I would have liked because it was just so darn good! I guess that means I will just have to make it again…maybe tomorrow??

Creamy Spaghetti Squash Primavera:

Ingredients:
½ of a medium-sized Spaghetti Squash
1 Laughing Cow Light Creamy Swiss Wedge 
1 Tablespoon Grated Parmesan Cheese
1 Teaspoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
½ Teaspoon Chopped Garlic
½ Cup Chopped Bell Pepper and Onion
2 Button Mushrooms
6 Grape Tomatoes
Ground Pepper
Fresh Basil (optional topping)

Instructions for Baking the Squash:
--Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
    
--Microwave the whole squash for 2 minutes and 45 seconds to slightly soften. (This will make it much easier to cut in half!)

--Cut the ends off of the squash and stand it upright. Slice the squash straight down the middle and scoop the seeds out of each half. (You may choose to save these and roast them later, as this post is about cutting down on waste, or simply discard them.)

--Place the squash halves cut side down on a baking sheet that has been covered with foiled and sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. (Note: I flipped the squash over after cooking to take the picture below.)

--Bake the squash for approximately 40 minutes, or until very tender.

--Allow the squash to cool for 10-15 minutes before using a fork to remove the inner goodness, or strands of “spaghetti.”
To Complete the Dish:
--In a medium-sized skillet, over a medium flame, heat the oil and add the chopped vegetables, starting with the onions and peppers; season with a dash of ground pepper and add in the garlic. You don’t want this to burn, as it will become bitter. Sautee, which fun fact, literally means to jump around, until veggies are tender and caramelized.

--Cut up the cheese wedge and add it to a bowl containing ½ of the stranded spaghetti squash. Reheat in the microwave for 30 seconds and stir well. Add the vegetable mixture and mix until all ingredients are combined.

--Top with Parmesan cheese and chopped basil. Now enjoy every last bite!! Mmmm!

Nutritional Information:
Calories: 251, Fat: 7.5 grams, Carbohydrates: 35 grams, Fiber: 8 grams, Protein: 8 grams
]]>
<![CDATA[Really Crabby Yet Not Too Shabby!]]>Fri, 13 Apr 2012 16:04:44 GMThttp://ilanaspiece.weebly.com/a-healthy-foodie/not-too-shabby-yet-really-crabby This week I had the pleasure of hearing a man named Scott Fried speak. I met Scott four years ago at a Penn State Hillel Shabbat dinner and knew I could not pass up the opportunity to see him again. Scott was infected by HIV over two decades ago and has devoted his life to enlightening others on topics related to sex, relationships, and personal struggle. The topic of Wednesday night’s lecture was “Social Media and True Intimacy.”

As I have alluded to in my previous analyses of social media, social networking allows one to manipulate their image and tell the world who they want to be, as oppose to revealing a true depiction of who they really are. Platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Match.com, etc. provide a distraction, an opportunity to take us away from our pain. They embolden us to act in a way that is foreign to our true selves—simply creating an illusion.

Scott believes that along with the body’s biological immune system, an emotional immune system also exists. If one continuously conceals their most authentic self and lies about their true feelings for an extended duration of time, they will end up sick.

We lie about whom we are because we want more. We feel we are not enough yet crave intimacy and are longing for a connection. True intimacy is not exchanging information via online profiles, but rather it is “standing at the intersection of risk and need and waiting for the truth” to emerge. It is learning about ourselves in the presence of another and feeling cherished after we have been discovered and our inner truths have been revealed. This is authentic acceptance; this is true intimacy.

When someone stands with you face-to-face and looks into your eyes, they are searching your soul, and a vessel is filled. So how do we strip our deepest truths, which lie there, of shame? We must begin to believe that we are enough. The thing that is most beautiful about each one of us is what we are actually hiding away.  When we “allow the vulnerable and authentic sides of ourselves to collide,” we are enabled to feel empowered and alive.

The inspirational discussion Scott fostered led me to the image of a crab. It sounds random, but I promise it makes some sense…Concealed behind a hard shell, is a rich, flavorful, and meaty interior. As we break open a crab’s shell to enjoy what lies within it, we must also crack our own shells, stop running and hiding from what is real and true, and once and for all firmly believe, “I am enough.”

The following dish is dedicated to Scott Fried and the fabulous work he is doing to empower and enlighten individuals around the country by conveying the strength, courage, and potential that lies within. Inspired by a Hungry Girl recipe, of course it features crab, (well, imitation in this case…I am on a college budget!) as well as Shirataki noodles. These are made out of the roots of a yam and tofu making them a wonderful pasta alternative both low in calories and carbohydrates.

A Friedy Crab-Fredo:

Ingredients:
1 Bag Tofu Shirataki Noodles—Fettuccine Shape
1 Wedge Light Laughing Cow Creamy Swiss Wedge
4 Ounces Imitation Crab Meat (Look for a lower-sodium variety)
¼ Cup Chopped Bell Pepper
1 Tablespoon Grated Parmesan Cheese
Fresh Basil (optional topping)

Instructions:
-- Rinse the noodles thoroughly in a colander and dry very well in a kitchen towel. You want to remove as much moisture as possible. 

--Chop imitation crabmeat into small chunks as well as the bell pepper and any other vegetables you would like to include. I think steamed asparagus, broccoli, and/or mushrooms would be great additions! 

--Microwave the noodles for one minute in a bowl. Then, break up the cheese wedge and add it to the bowl. Microwave another 45 seconds. 

--Add in the crab and vegetables and stir to combine ingredients. Microwave an additional 30 seconds. 

--Top with Parmesan cheese and fresh basil. Now chow down on this deliciously creamy, guilt-free dish! (Careful though, may be very hot!)

Nutritional Information:
Calories: 200 Fat: 3.5 grams Carbohydrates: 25 grams Fiber: 5 grams Protein: 12 grams

]]>
<![CDATA[Slow and Steady Will Win the Race...]]>Thu, 05 Apr 2012 19:53:50 GMThttp://ilanaspiece.weebly.com/a-healthy-foodie/slow-and-steady-will-win-the-raceSince posting last week, I have stuck to my commitment making sure not to skip a meal! I feel proud of finally leaping over a hurdle that I have gazed at from a distance for quite sometime now. Yet it has been a week and with fear of stagnation, I recognize that it is time to take an additional step, as to avoid regression. In moving forward, I remind myself of something I once heard Oprah say, "Courage is feeling the fear and doing it anyway." From an outsider's perspective, it may seem the steps I am taking are small and that this is a very slow process yet I know I am heading in the right direction and want more than anything to succeed, once and for all. Now I must decide specifically what I will implement this week…? 

This slow, but steady mentality of progression brought to mind a recent culinary creation of mine, so of course I have to share!

A couple weeks ago, I had spent the entire morning completing some intense reading for a class and felt the need to get up and move a bit; however, I could not find a way to make the cold air and gusting winds outside into desirable and motivating conditions for a jog or walk. I resorted to the treadmill at the gym. As I was flipping through the channels on the attached television, I came across an episode of "The Chew." They were discussing various methods of cooking fish and featuring a specific technique used by the Chef at the White House. It is widely known that First Lady Michelle Obama is a big advocate of exercise and healthy eating so my interest was piqued. After watching the segment, I knew immediately what was for dinner that evening!

The method employed by the five-star, White House Chef was "slow baking." As it sounds, this technique cooks the fish slowly at a very low temperature to retain maximum nutrients, moisture, and flavor.  While she used salmon, I chose to have Wild Atlantic Cod that night. For those who may be unfamiliar with types of seafood, cod is a mild, delicate, and lean white fish that is a good source of phosphorous, niacin, and vitamins B6 and B12.  I would highly recommend trying the following slow baked technique on any type of fresh seafood that you prefer, as it was simple yet sensational. I chose to have the cod atop a bed of mixed organic greens tossed with balsamic vinegar and alongside ½ of an acorn squash that I had roasted in the oven with cinnamon, sugar substitute, and nutmeg a day earlier. 

Ingredients:
5-6 ounce filet of Wild Atlantic Cod
½ teaspoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Pepper to season

Instructions:

--Preheat the oven to 200 degrees.

--Sprinkle both sides of the fish with pepper. Feel free to use additional seasonings such as garlic and salt; however, the simpler you keep it, the more you will appreciate the abundant flavors of the fish.

--Set the fish on a baking sheet and drizzle with the olive oil and a splash of water.

--Cook for 15-25 minutes depending on your desired doneness (Mine took about 20 minutes).

Nutritional Information (for 5 oz. prepared fish):
Calories: 140, Fat: 3 grams, Carbohydrates: 0 grams, Fiber: 0 grams, Protein: 25 grams
Picture
It was so delicious, I made the exact same meal again (4/16)!
]]>
<![CDATA[A Piece of Humble Pie]]>Thu, 29 Mar 2012 01:06:10 GMThttp://ilanaspiece.weebly.com/a-healthy-foodie/a-piece-of-humble-pie Well, really pizza pie, but I'll get to that in a few minutes. 

I met with a dear friend and mentor this afternoon. I always adore spending time with her yet today our coffee date went beyond that and truly moved me. We discussed some current events, had a few laughs, and then came the update regarding her family… My friend’s brother, who is in his early fifties, has been battling critical health issues for quite sometime now. This man has a beautiful spirit that is absolutely thriving, while tragically, his body continues to deteriorate. Looking into the eyes of my friend and hearing the devastating update on his current condition moved us both to tears and ignited a spark within me. This was the pivotal moment that yielded a breakthrough.

A righteous man who encompassed so many incredible qualities and such zeal for life was suffering tremendously due to multiple illnesses that were out of his control. Like so many individuals fighting cancers, autoimmune diseases, or even horrible migraines, there is often no rhyme or reason as to why these conditions are imposed upon them, but they are and the person's quality and length of life are reduced. Of course I have possessed these same thoughts before, but seeing the pain and sadness behind the moist and glassy eyes of my friend, shook me and somehow made this realization more poignant than ever. 

Here I am, an almost 22-year-old woman, with a life ahead of her that is bursting with possibilities. Yet I have been putting all that potential into jeopardy by depriving my body of everything it needs and yearns for in order to flourish. Every day that I choose to cope with my emotions of stress, anxiety, sadness, fear, etc. by, for example, skipping a meal, I am “feeding” a totally preventable problem. I FOUND IT! Through our discussion today of her brother, my friend provided me the kick in the pants that I’ve been searching for and in dire need of to end this stagnation and push myself back on course, moving toward a restored, healthier, more balanced place.

I am completely humbled by this man’s story and I dedicate this blog and the “peace” of pizza pie that follows to him. In his honor, I will take steps starting right now to live a better life that implements the wisdom, courage, and strength that I know lie deep within me.

My Humble (BBQ Chicken Pizza) Pie:

Ingredients:
Cooking Spray or 1 Teaspoon Olive Oil
1 FlatOut Fold It—I like the Whole Wheat with Flax variety
1 Tablespoon Organic BBQ Sauce (look for a brand void of high fructose corn syrup and excessive sodium)
Mushrooms and Yellow Onion—as much or as little as you like!
4 Ounces of Organic, Lean, Ground Chicken
1/3 Cup Low Fat Shredded Cheese—I prefer a Mexican Blend in this recipe

Instructions:

--Slice the mushrooms and chop the onion and add them to a skillet that contains the olive oil or has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray, and is over medium heat. When the vegetables begin to soften, add the ground chicken to the pan and cook through.

--Meanwhile, bake the FlatOut in the toaster oven or regular oven directly on the rack for just a couple minutes until it begins to get crispy.

--Then, remove from the oven, spread the barbeque sauce evenly on the FlatOut, add the chicken and vegetable mixture, and top with the cheese.

--Place the pizza back in the oven just until the cheese is fully melted.

--Now take a moment to recognize just how precious your life is and how well off you are in comparison to many others who are involuntarily suffering, and enjoy this absolutely delicious dish!

Nutritional Information (using cooking spray): These numbers may vary depending on the brands of ingredients you use.
Calories: 330, Fat: 12.5 grams, Carbs: 20 grams, Fiber: 8 grams, Protein: 35 grams

]]>
<![CDATA[Boil It Down!]]>Wed, 28 Mar 2012 10:37:52 GMThttp://ilanaspiece.weebly.com/a-healthy-foodie/boil-it-downFor which of these pics would you like to know more on the dish??
]]>
<![CDATA[A Theme of Steam]]>Fri, 10 Feb 2012 15:11:24 GMThttp://ilanaspiece.weebly.com/a-healthy-foodie/a-theme-of-steamI have a few friends who attempt to improve their moods or cope with their stress through retail therapy. It's been said that similar to consuming high amounts of sugar or going on a run, shopping for many people results in an adrenaline rush, an endorphin high. I admit, I am guilty of this habit; however, you will not find me browsing the clothing aisles or scoping out the newest beauty products. My retail therapy occurs through watching cooking shows on television shopping networks and at kitchen stores, where hundreds of cooking gadgets and gizmos are showcased. This past summer, I came across what has become one of my most favorite culinary items. I decided to feature this product and it's technique, as I think it is an essential for all who are experts in the kitchen or just putting on their chef's hat for the first time.

The product I cannot stop boasting about is the Orka Steamer by Mastrad. Steaming is such a wonderful and healthy way of cooking because it seals in the nutrients, vitamins, and minerals of the food that are often lost or destroyed during cooking processes like boiling, frying, sautéing, and broiling. Another advantage is that without the addition of any fats, steaming has the ability to keep the food moist and flavorful. Not to mention, it is extremely quick and easy to do!

I devised a delicious meal that anyone can successfully prepare, which features this incredible cooking method and my prized possession, the Orka steamer. The steamer is made of silicon, which makes it naturally non-stick and very easy to clean without much muscle grease. But if you are feeling especially lazy, no problem, throw it right on the top rack of the dishwasher. It can be used in the oven or microwave, and as a busy college student, the microwave is a quick, go-to method.

For this dinner, I chose to steam a filet of tilapia. Tilapia is a great source of protein as well as omega-3 fatty acids, which help maintain an appropriate blood pressure and keep heart disease at bay. February is Heart Month after all, right? Tilapia also contains niacin, selenium, which decreases the risk of certain cancers and heart disease, and vitamin B12, which helps keep you mentally alert. Another positive is that unlike other fish such as tuna, tilapia has very low levels of mercury. So, I simply took the filet out of the freezer, placed it into the steamer, and put it in the microwave for three minutes. The result? A moist, flaky, beautiful piece of protein without any excess fats or additives!

Continuing the theme, I paired this protein with steamed asparagus and steamed brown rice.  While I could have definitely used my steamer to prepare these components, and have in the past with great success, I happened to have purchased them frozen in steam-able bags that go right into the microwave for just a few minutes. Steaming and not boiling the rice and vegetable assured me that their amazing nutrient content was retained.  It is important to note that I opted for brown rice because brown rice is only void of its outermost layer, the hull, of the rice kernel. The process rice undergoes to become white destroys the majority of the vitamins B3, B1, B6, manganese, phosphorus, iron, and all of the dietary fiber and essential fatty acids it contains. These are essential nutrients that prevent cancers and heart disease so why opt out of consuming them? Asparagus is also a super food in that it contains many antioxidants and vitamins including C, E, zinc, and manganese, which are huge risk reducers for chronic health issues such as type two diabetes and again, heart disease.

Once the cooking was completed, I seasoned the asparagus with some freshly ground pepper and garlic powder, cut the spears, and arranged them around the plate. Then, I mixed a tablespoon of organic salsa into the brown rice to give it a bit of pizzazz. I love the Enrico brand of salsa found in the Nature's Marketplace section of Wegmans because it is all-natural and does not contain any added salt. While most varieties have 250 milligrams of sodium, this salsa has only 60 milligrams per two tablespoon serving, for which your heart will be grateful. I think salsa is a great alternative to butter and other condiments because it is composed of vegetables and herbs, which make it low in calories and high in vitamins A, B, and C, as well as magnesium and potassium. Out of respect for this great accoutrement, I spooned a second tablespoon on top of the fish. Voila! A delicious, nutritious, quick, and easy meal that came together through the power of steam! Below is the impressive nutritional information and a picture of this meal. Give it a try, I promise you will catch yourself beaming once you start steaming!

Nutritional Information--
Calories: 290, Fat: 3 grams, Carbohydrates: 39 grams, Fiber: 3 grams, Protein: 29 grams
]]>
<![CDATA[February Foodie Fun]]>Wed, 08 Feb 2012 20:58:54 GMThttp://ilanaspiece.weebly.com/a-healthy-foodie/february-foodie-funIn a Communications class last semester, I was looking for story ideas and discovered that every month of the year has various observances that are not often advertised and go unknown to many people. So I thought it would be fun to look up what observances are occurring in February and possibly cook up a meal in lieu of one or two of them. Did you know that February is both Potato Lover's Month and American Heart Month? I set out on a mission: to create a heart healthy meal that showcased the potato.

Many people eat potatoes in the form of French fries, potato chips, or baked and loaded with fats like butter, sour cream, and bacon. While tasty options, those variations are potential contributors to poor heart health. Yet if un-fried and void of the fattening toppings, a baked potato is a healthful, low calorie, high-fiber food that is a great source of vitamin B6, vitamin C, copper, potassium, and manganese (just be sure to eat the skin). So how would I celebrate the potato while keeping it heart healthy? Well, I decided to bake the potato in the microwave for eight minutes. When it was cooked, I cut it open, scooped out the inside and placed the contents into a bowl. To that, I added in a Laughing Cow Light Garlic and Herb Cheese Wedge. The warmth of the potato melted the cheese immediately and created a really creamy, wonderfully aromatic mixture. Now, I noted that the skin is full of fabulous nutrients, so of course I would be including it! I stuffed the mixture of cheesy, potato goodness back into the skin. The cheese wedge only added 1.5 grams of fat to the potato and a measly 35 calories. So the entire potato contained 173 calories, 1.5 grams of fat, 3 grams of fiber, and 6 grams of protein. Compare that to a conventional loaded baked potato or side of fries! I must say that the flavor and texture were not compromised by any means!

Now along with the potato, I needed to complete the meal with other components that also promoted heart health. I decided to season an organic chicken breast with garlic powder, fresh ground pepper, and basil, and steamed it. When the chicken was cooked through, I diced it into smaller pieces and tossed it with two cups of steamed spinach and ¼ cup of organic tomato sauce. Chicken is a great source of protein that is low in fat, but high in niacin, selenium, vitamin B6, and phosphorous. Spinach and tomatoes are also full of nutrients that provide powerful antioxidants, which have been shown to reduce the risk of cancers and heart disease.

This meal was a total success! It was absolutely delicious and food I could enjoy knowing that I was bettering my health in the process! So I encourage all of you to give it a shot! Toss aside the box of Ramen or leftover pizza and get adventurous in the kitchen. You may surprise yourself. When you eat cleaner and healthier food, you may notice you start to feel a bit better too! Below is the nutritional information and a picture of this celebratory and tasty meal!

Nutritional Information--
Calories: 347, Fat: 3.5 grams, Carbohydrates: 39 grams, Fiber: 6 grams, Protein: 35 grams
]]>