It seems since stepping down from The Biggest Loser in 2011 life has gotten even busier for star trainer Jillian Michaels if possible. Aside from numerous TV appearances, her latest DVD Body Revolution and many other projects, she’s also been expanding her family as well! In just one month, Michaels and her partner Hilary Rhoades adopted their daughter Lukensia, from Haiti and gave birth to their son, Phoenix. We got the chance to catch up with the new mom on behalf of popchips to see how she’s teaching her kids healthy eating practices and how she fits in a good workout these days!
Congrats on the new additions to your family! What are some healthy eating tips you’re trying to incorporate into your kids’ lives?
Since the kids are so young (Lukensia is 2 and Phoenix is 3 months old) it is incredibly important that we develop healthy eating habits for them now. Whenever possible, I prefer to make their food myself, so I know exactly what they are eating. As a rule of thumb, I like to suggest to parents to use fruits and vegetables with bright colors, they are the ones with the most nutrients. Having meals at a set time helps establish a routine, making sure both kids are hydrated without resorting to sugary drinks. I also try to feed them organic foods as often as possible. Pesticides and other chemicals are pure poison to their little bodies and need to be avoided. Read more
Written by Lisa Turner, editorial intern
With a seal of approval from the FDA yesterday, brand new diet drug Qsymia promises to help people shed unwanted pounds. Right now, it’s only approved for people who are not only overweight, but struggle with an accompanying condition such as high cholesterol or high blood pressure. Taking a pill sounds like an easy solution, but here at FITNESS, we believe in a prescription of exercise and healthy eating habits. We wanted to know if our Twitter followers felt the same way, so we asked them: Would you take a pill to make weight loss easier?
@KateSchlag: Research proves it–there’s no quick fix for weight loss. Not even in a pill.
@redcurlgurl: No. I like to lose weight the old fashioned way with diet and exercise. I want to earn those “You look great!” compliments.
@Trhi10: We need more whole foods and less pills; it’s another Band-aid.
@xtinamcknight: They also approve of highly processed death trap food like McDonald’s. So thanks, but no thanks.
Now tell us: What do you think about the FDA approving Qsymia?
Constant dieting may not be the best way to maintain weight, but chances are you’ve been on one (or two, or a few!) at one point in your life. And that can mean a lifetime of dieting failures, but there’s always something to learn from your attempts. Here are some lessons learned from those fad diets.
- Steer clear of empty calories (Low-carb diet): Low-carb diets like the Atkins or Dukan diets can be hard to maintain and aren’t always the healthiest eating choices to make, since you’re at risk for eating too much saturated fat in lieu of nutrient-rich (but also high-carb) produce like carrots. But what a low-carb diet does teach you is to rely less on refined carbs like breads and crackers, too, which can be the source of many empty calories for lots of people.
- Stick with whole foods (Paleo diet): Processed foods aren’t exactly waist-line-friendly, so the Paleo diet’s focus on fruits, veggies, meat, and anything else our foraging ancestors could get their hands on is a healthy principle. While grains and dairy may be off limits, Paleo dieters fill up on fresh produce and lean proteins.
- Keep your heart healthy (Mediterranean diet) There’s a reason why those living on the Mediterranean coast are so happy; their diet has been proven to help people live longer. As a diet craze, people turn to the Mediterranean diet to lose weight with its focus on fresh foods and low-calorie seafood, but the benefits of the diet, which is full of healthy fats found in fish, nuts, and olive oil, include lowering your risk of heart disease and brain aging.
Read on for more lessons learned from popular diets.
Don’t eat this, stay away from that — following a diet can seem like a total killjoy. If you’re feeling depressed about how restrictive your diet is, here are some proven weight-loss rules you’ll welcome with open arms.
1. Dig into a big breakfast: Skipping breakfast to save calories? That’s a big mistake because eating breakfast actually jump-starts your metabolism. Your first meal of the day should include protein to reduce sugar cravings, and fiber to satiate your hunger. A veggie omelet, fruit smoothie with spinach, oatmeal with fruit and nuts, or Greek yogurt with fresh fruit are excellent choices.
2. Say yes to carbs: Before you get all excited, I’m not talking about bagels, regular pasta, and pretzels. Simple carbs made from enriched white flour offer little nutritional value and more calories than you need. Stick to complex carbs like quinoa, brown rice, and oats, as well as foods made from whole grain flour such as pasta and crackers — the least processed and as close to nature as possible. (Of course, you still need to be mindful of portion sizes.) Complex carbs are not only full of fiber that keep hunger at bay, they also contain valuable vitamins and minerals your body needs such as vitamins B6 and E and iron.
3. Eat between meals: No need to feel starved all day! Aside from your three main meals, schedule a morning and afternoon snack to keep hunger at bay. Stick to munching on snacks that are 150 calories or less, and use your two snacks as a time to fill holes in your diet such as getting a little extra protein or fiber. Not sure what to eat? Check out these 150-calorie snack ideas.
4. Set a time to indulge each day: Whether it’s chocolate you long for or some crunchy, salty chips, choose a time each day where you can splurge on a little something you crave. Keep it under 50 calories and really take the time to sit down and savor it. Satisfying your edible desires is a great way to prevent breaking down and binging on huge portions of unhealthy foods later.
Keep reading for more weight-loss rules you’ll love following.
More from FitSugar:
True, the traditional “eating holidays” like Thanksgiving and Super Bowl Sunday occur during the colder months. No matter the month, though, diet disasters are sure to pop up. That’s why Karen Ansel, a registered dietitian in Long Island, New York, decided to write her new book with CNN diet and fitness expert Melina Jampolis, M.D. The Calendar Diet: A Month to Month Guide to Losing Weight While Living Life shows readers how to fit in their skinny jeans—and make smart, healthy choices—from Valentine’s Day to Cinco de Mayo to Halloween.
Here are Ansel’s top tips to outsmart seasonal diet traps:
- Pack travel snacks. “For car trips or when you’ll be staying at a hotel, bring energy bars and portion-controlled bags of nuts, crackers and dried fruit. This way, you won’t be as tempted by fast food restaurants or the hotel mini bar.”
- Store pantry staples. “The key to maintaining a healthy diet when you’re busy is a well-stocked pantry so you don’t dial for Chinese takeout on a busy evening or when you’re just back from a trip. Items like pasta and beans last a long time and can make a nice meal in a hurry.”
- Order drinks on ice. “Frosty drinks, like sweetened iced teas and margaritas, can increase your calorie total for the day very quickly. Ask for plenty of ice and order your margarita on the rocks rather than blended. It’s automatic portion control and will keep you from downing glass after glass too fast.”
- Skip the chips. “With Cinco de Mayo and outdoor picnics approaching, keep in mind that a few big handfuls of tortilla chips can be 500 calories! I tell me clients to skip them because it’s really hard to stop after just a few. Cut red and yellow peppers into strips and dip them into a mix of salsa and guacamole.”
- Go fish. “Shrimp fajitas and fish tacos are wise choices whether your hosting a barbecue or dining out. Skip the cheese and pile on veggies for a filling, satisfying meal.”
- Plan ahead. “It’s all about balance. If you know your dinner is going to be heavy on macaroni salad and hamburger buns, try to get plenty of protein, fruits and vegetables in your breakfast and lunch.”
More from FITNESS:
There are lots of reasons you should be eating chocolate, even if you are on a diet. Just an ounce a day helps your skin, prevents heart disease and can instantly boost your mood. But now there is another reason to let yourself indulge a little bit, for charity. Just in time for Easter basket purchases, Lindt Chocolate is teaming up with Autism Speaks to help raise awareness of the developmental disability that affects 1 in 110 American children. Here’s how you can help:
- Between now and Easter, April 8, buy a Lindt Gold Bunny, and Lindt will donate 10 cents for every purchase to Autism Speaks.
- For every Easter e-card sent from lindtgoldbunny.com, Lindt will donate $1.
- Cast your bid at the Lindt Gold Bunny Celebrity Auction, where 70 porcelain bunnies signed by celebs like Jennifer Garner, Julie Bowen, Katherine Heigl and other A-listers will be auctioned off at lindtgoldbunnyauction.com from March 8 to 18.
- Repin any of Lindt’s Easter-related pins on Pinterest (and follow us on Pinterest too while you’re at it!) and Lindt will donate up to $10,000 for your pinning efforts.
So there you have it, eating chocolate can not only help you, but also give back at the same time. Plus, can you really resist the cuteness of those little gold bunnies?
More from FITNESS: The Secret Health Benefits of Chocolate
March 1 marks more than the start of a new month—it’s the beginning of a 31-day celebration of healthy eating. Welcome to National Nutrition Month! You’ll discover delicious recipes, food news and simple nutrition-boosting strategies to help you celebrate in style all month long here at The Fit Stop.
To kick things off, let’s talk food shopping. We know that it’s smart to shop in the produce aisle and save cookies for treats, but the gray area between these ends of the grocery spectrum can be tricky! That’s why the American Heart Association (AHA) awards their Heart-Check mark to food products that meet their requirements as cardiac-friendly.
“It’s an easy way to identify, on the front of a package, heart-healthy foods,” says Rachel Johnson, R.D., PH.D., an AHA spokesperson and a professor of nutrition and medicine at the University of Vermont. “The science-based criteria takes into account fat, sugar, sodium and a number of other factors. It’s really helpful because you don’t need a Ph.D. in nutrition to know if a food is healthy or not.”
To respond to the most recent research, new guidelines will go into place by 2014. Sodium and added sugar limits will be lowered and the total fat limit will be raised to accommodate products with healthy unsaturated fats, like nuts and oily fish.
Of course, there are many foods and drinks out there that are super-nutritious and don’t need a label to tell you (Strawberries! Oats! Water!). Follow these general guidelines from the AHA to consume a heart-healthy diet:
- 4.5 cups of fruits and vegetables or more daily
- Two 3.5-ounce servings of oily fish (such as salmon, tuna or mackerel) weekly
- Three 1-ounce servings of whole grains daily
- Less than 1,500 milligrams of sodium daily
- No more than 36 ounces of sugar-sweetened beverages weekly (less is better)
More from FITNESS:
- 10 Food Swaps to Make Your Heart Healthy
- Are Fortified Foods Good for You?
- Heart-Healthy Meals in 30 Minutes
Looking at Jenni Pulos’ resume would make any busy bee go cross-eyed. She’s starred in five seasons of Flipping Out with boss and interior design guru Jeff Lewis, she’s a rapper, an actress, planning a wedding, and is now embarking on a new show with Lewis called Interior Therapy, airing on Bravo in March. It goes without saying that a woman with a hectic schedule like hers needs a good deodorant! That’s why she’s partnered up with Secret Outlast in their latest campaign to protect women against odor and give them peace of mind (in a recent survey from Secret, women said forgetting deodorant would affect their day more than forgetting to put on makeup!) We chatted with Pulos on how she tackles her steep to-do list while getting in shape for her upcoming wedding.
We love the new ad! Tell us about the shoot and your partnership with Secret.
This shoot was so fun, but it was 15 hours! I used the deodorant before we started and was expecting to be sweating by 3 p.m. (what we refer to as the “hour of ick”) but I was dry as a bone. I can appreciate a product like this because of my lifestyle. I’m in the car all day with Jeff and he is not only OCD, but also very sensitive to smell, so this really saves any awkward car rides that might ensue. I don’t get a chance to look in the mirror that often at work since we are always on the go, and this gives me one less thing to think about.
What are some of your best time-saving tips you’ve picked up with your job?
For work and in my personal life, physically writing down a to-do list is helpful. It’s good to jot everything down and then start chopping away one thing at a time. It sounds silly, but small things like putting your keys in the same spot and making sure you put your credit cards away are the biggest time savers. Little things like that will help you keep it all together. If not, you’re spending ten minutes digging through your purse to find everything.
We learned from filming Interior Therapy that organization is key. After that I went home and cleaned out my closets and reorganized my entire house. It was time consuming but I knew that getting rid of the clutter would save me time in the long run. Also, don’t think too much about it! When you’re deciding what clothes to donate, just do it. The more you think the more you’ll start to second guess and then that shirt will end up right back in your closet.
Eating a healthy, balanced diet should be top on your list, especially if you’re looking to lose some weight. You know you should avoid processed foods, but some of nature’s whole foods, although pure and untainted, are so high in calories that eating too much can cause you to gain weight. Here are five foods you should enjoy in moderation when it comes to eating a healthy diet.
A wonderful source of quick protein before a workout or as an afternoon snack, nuts and seeds are bursting with nutrition, but they are also tipping high in the calorie department. Instead of just blindly grabbing handful after handful, enjoy these salty snacks one ounce at a time. Get a visual and see what an ounce of nuts actually looks like. The same goes for nut butters — avoid spooning straight from the jar.
Orange juice is one of nature’s most refreshing beverages, and it’s made from oranges so how can it be bad? You can quickly gulp down a 163-calorie 12-ounce glass, and if you enjoy a glass every morning, it’s easy to see why the pounds are starting to increase on your bathroom scale. Skip the liquid calories and enjoy a fiber-rich medium orange for 62 calories instead.
Getting your fill of healthy fats is essential to your diet, and creamy avocado is an excellent source. Even though you could easily scoop out all 322 calories of entire avocado in minutes, it’s best to enjoy this fruit in smaller amounts. Definitely don’t give up this super healthy food! Dice a quarter of an avocado on your salad or mash it on your sammy, so you can reap the benefits of the healthy fats without affecting your waistline.
Pure Maple Syrup
A naturally occurring sweetener, it’s tough to sit down to a stack of flapjacks without pouring on pure maple syrup. This may be shocking, but a quarter-cup serving will run you 200 calories! That’s almost more than the pancakes themselves. Instead of dousing your breakfast plate in nature’s luscious syrup, mix two tablespoons with vanilla Greek yogurt and smear that on your stack, so you can enjoy the maple flavor without all the calories.
Keep reading for more fattening, yet all-natural foods.
Between meetings, appointments, work deadlines, errands, family obligations, and trips to the gym, our lives can be so busy that we fill our bellies with the quickest, easiest bites we can get our hands on. Whether your goal is to drop unwanted pounds or eat healthier, it’s in your best interest to pause before you take your first bite and ask yourself these four important questions.
Am I hungry? Seems like a silly question, because you’re eating, so you must be hungry, right? Many times we reach for food out of boredom, convenience (the bag of chips was open), depression (chocolate to drown your breakup sorrows), happiness (to celebrate a promotion), or desire (who could pass up the amazing brownies your co-worker brought in?). But if we recently ate, then we’re not even hungry. Make sure you’re due for a snack or meal before sitting down to eat one.
Is this food filling holes in my diet? We eat to live and that means the food we gobble down should offer our bodies the vitamins and nutrients it needs to function properly. Aside from being healthy, our daily diet should also be balanced. If you ate a high-protein breakfast of eggs and Greek yogurt topped with nuts, then for a morning snack, you probably want to eat something that offers your body something besides protein, such as fiber, potassium, or vitamin A. Think of each snack and meal as a piece of your daily diet puzzle; an opportunity to take in what your body is lacking.
Is it the correct portion size? It’s snack time, and you’re sitting down to a banana, toast with peanut butter, a cheese stick, and crackers. Although healthy, that’s way more calories than a typical snack should be. Depending on your weight, and your weight-loss goals, keep your snacks to around 150 calories, breakfast between 300 and 500 calories, lunch between 400 and 600 calories, and dinner around 400 and 600 cals.
Keep reading to find out the other more questions you should ask yourself before eating.