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Shop to Help Keep Veterans Active

Written on November 4, 2013 at 10:41 am , by

(Photo courtesy of the Wounded Warrior Project)

Did you catch FITNESS reader Cassandra in the I Did It! section on page 20 of our September issue? (In case you missed it or need a reminder, she raised $5,420 for the Boot Campaign which helps military veterans and their families.) Now through Veteran’s Day, November 11, you too can make an impact and support our nation’s heroes. No sweat: You don’t have to drop and give us 20—although that’s never a bad thing to do!

The Believe in Heroes campaign, now in its fourth year, gathers funds to help wounded soldiers get back to their favorite activities (through programs like adaptive sports and rehab). Contributing can be as easy as visiting your local supermarket.

How to help:

  1. Donate at your grocery store. Thousands of supermarkets across the U.S. accept donations as you check out.
  2. Download free coupons. Coupons for some of your favorite food and drink brands will be available for free through December 2 at wwpbelieve.org. A contribution will be made to the Wounded Warrior Project for each coupon redeemed.
  3. Click over to Facebook. Learn about participating stores and learn more about Wounded Warriors’ personal stories at www.facebook.com/wwpinc.fans.

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Freebie Alert: Jamba Juice Holiday Treats

Written on November 28, 2011 at 11:50 am , by

One staff member thought this tastes like apple pie in a glass! (Photo courtesy of Jamba Juice)

Sharing presents is one of the best parts of the holidays, but our bank accounts don’t always agree! (Especially today after that Black Friday shopping and the Cyber Monday spending sure to come this evening.)

That’s why we were pumped to hear about a delicious deal going on now at Jamba Juice. Now through January 3, the shop is offering a coupon for one free smoothie when you purchase $25 of gift cards. One of our current favorites: the Apple Cinnamon Cheer smoothie, which packs 20 percent of your daily value of vitamin C. It’s made with juice, soymilk, frozen yogurt, fruit and cinnamon, and is reminiscent of a tasty holiday dessert!

And grab that smoothie to go: as reported in our November/December issue, walking at a pace of 3 miles per hour for 15 minutes per day—like while shopping—can extend your life up to three years more than those who are sedentary! Bonus: Walking to and from the store can save transportation money as well.

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Now tell us: What’s your favorite way to save during the gift-giving season?

5 Packaged Foods That Are Actually Healthy

Written on November 23, 2011 at 2:15 pm , by

food label reading

Photo courtesy of SparkPeople

By Sarah Haan, Registered Dietitian, for SparkPeople.com

You’ve probably heard this advice before: For a healthy grocery trip, shop the perimeter of the store. But if you stick to this advice completely you’ll be missing out on some of the nutritious items that do come in packages. These packaged foods—not to be confused with “processed” foods—can give you some great nutrients and make meal planning easier, saving you precious time.

Here’s a list of the healthiest convenience foods you can buy from the center aisles of the grocery store.

1. Canned Beans
Though dried beans are cheaper than canned, they can take a lot of time to cook. Canned beans pack an impressive amount of fiber and protein and can be a quick addition to many meals. Pinto, kidney, cannellini (white kidney), black, Great Northern—name any bean, they’re all great sources of nutrition for your body. When you’re choosing your beans, look for ones without added salt or seasoning. Before using your beans, drain and rinse them in a colander when you’re ready to cook. This will help wash added sodium down the drain–40% of the sodium to be exact.

2. Oats and Flaxseed
Prepare to have a heart-healthy breakfast by combining old-fashioned oats and ground flaxseed, both found packaged in either cartons or bags. One cup of cooked oatmeal with 2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed will give you 8 grams of much needed fiber, as well as a dose of omega-3 fatty acids, which each protect the heart. Choose old-fashioned oats over quick oats or instant oatmeal to ensure you’re getting the maximum amount of fiber without added salt and sugar.

3. Brown Rice
For a boxed fare that is both versatile and nutrient packed, pick up brown rice on your next grocery trip. This fiber-rich grain is a great side for nearly any meat, bean, and vegetable–or combination of all three! Try it with kidney beans, diced tomatoes and cilantro, or top it with shrimp, streamed carrots and broccoli with your favorite low-sodium sauce.

4. Tuna Fish Packed in Water
When it comes to getting a bang for your buck out of canned food, this is almost as good as it gets. This convenient food is high in omega-3 fatty acids and protein, and also gives you a good amount of vitamins D and B-12, too. Top a bed of greens with tuna, veggies, fruit and nuts or scoop it onto whole wheat pita, crackers or bread for a healthy combo on-the-go.

5. Frozen Berries
When it comes to meeting your daily fruit requirement, you can’t beat frozen. Many frozen berries do not have added sugar, but some do. Double check that the ingredients list contains berries to make sure you’re not getting extra calories from refined sugars. Then, add them to oatmeal, cereal, yogurt or make a smoothie.

Continued: 5 More Surprisingly Healthy Packaged Foods


More from SparkPeople:

The 22 Healthiest Fast Foods

Staff Picks: Healthy Fast Food Lunches

Get a Free Fitness and Weight-Loss Plan

April Showers: Waterproof Jackets + Wellies!

Written on April 15, 2011 at 3:38 pm , by

This month, every refreshingly warm, sunny day has been followed up with at least two days of rain, clouds and cold. So as much as we’d like to, we can’t pack away our wellies and waterproof jackets just yet!

Take a peek at our favorite waterproof spring pieces that keep us smilin’ even when the sun isn’t shining.

1. Totes Bubble Umbrella, $22

2. Superdry Stormtracker Jacket, $95

3. Hunter Watling Lace Up Full Knee Boot, $175

4. Columbia Sportswear Trail Trip Rain Jacket, $95

5. Sperry Topsider Pelican Wedge Sadie Boot, $80

6. The North Face Venture Jacket, $99

Can You Handle The Zip?

Written on March 25, 2011 at 11:55 am , by

Everybody has an obsession with something, whether we like to admit it or not. Some people are obsessed with going to the gym, others with bad reality TV shows, and then there is me…I am obsessed with sunglasses. Marc Jacobs, Ray-Ban, Burberry, you name it, I’ve got it. So when the Von Zipper team called me up and asked if I wanted to meet with them to see the new Summer 2011 collection, I thought to myself “How can I turn this down?!” Little did I know what I was getting myself into. Enter new eyewear obsession here.

GT, one of the company’s owners, came into our office full of energy, with the laid back attitude of a California surfer dude, which is exactly what Von Zipper’s look is. All of the new shades that he showed us were wearable, fun, and totally awesome for summer. (Think sporty chic meets beach babe.) I don’t think there was a single pair of frames that I wasn’t swooning over. And what is even better is that the price points are just right. My new favorite collection, Smoke Out, which is a limited edition collection — get them while they are hot! — has styles ranging from $80-$100. Seriously, you can’t beat that!

Here are some of my favorite styles that Von Zipper is launching for the summer. They are perfect for the beach, running errands or out in the backyard grilling burgers with friends! Enjoy!

Feeling Lucky? Green Gear for St. Patty’s Day!

Written on March 11, 2011 at 12:30 pm , by

With St. Patrick’s Day around the corner, the girls here in the fashion department are feeling festive! Irish or not, everyone has a little Irish in them on St. Patty’s Day, right? While you are off eating corned beef and cabbage, downing a Guinness and snacking on some Lucky Charms, here are a few of our favorite things (lucky #13 to be exact) to keep you in the spirit! All things green of course!

1. Old Navy Linen Moto Jacket $35

2. Hurley Good Band St. Patty’s Day Tee $22

3. Reebok Premier ZigFly Sneakers $99

4. Oakley Beckon Sunglasses $110

5. Adidas Boston Marathon Glide Shorts $36

6. Helly Hansen Faerder Reversible Jacket $130

7. Madewell Silky Swing Dress $128

8. Puma Loop Neon Watch $50

9. TOMS Classic Camo Slip-On

10. Sydney Evan Yellow-Gold & Diamond Clover on African Opal Bracelet $825

11. Top Shop Marissa Bag by Orelia $300

12. Yogi Toes Groovy Skidless Yoga Towel $64

13. Patagonia Down Vest $150

Shop Your Heart Out—and Save!

Written on February 4, 2011 at 3:34 pm , by

Today is National Wear Red Day! To celebrate, we’re going shopping. Starting today and running through this weekend, you can save an extra 20%* off sale, clearance and select regular purchases at Macy’s simply by wearing red. Not your GRFW_CMYK_2CScolor? Buy a Red Dress Pin for $2 at a counter to receive the same discount. All proceeds benefit the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women movement. (You can also shop online with promo code: WEARRED)

Heart disease is the #1 killer of women and 90 percent of women have one or more risk factors for developing the disease. Click here to assess your risk and get a personalized healthy-heart plan from the American Heart Association.

(*Or 10% off select departments. Some exclusions apply; ask for details in store.)