Archives for posts with tag: healthy food

On my new crusade to save money, I have been scrutinizing my spending habits. A year or so ago, my doctor told me I had high cholesterol. One of the ways I chose to combat that was by adding oatmeal to my diet (it didn’t hurt, btw – my cholesterol dropped 60 points in a couple months, although oatmeal wasn’t the only measure I took). I was buying boxes of pre-made, microwavable oatmeal at the health food store. They were about $5 a box and contained six packets of oatmeal.

At the grocery store not too long ago, I spotted this in the health food section:

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Organic oats, ELEVEN servings for $1.40. That’s right. Twelve cents per serving!! Versus almost a dollar per serving in the packets! I bought the bag.

Obviously, I needed to doctor up the boring oats. I played with a variety of additions that I had on hand until I found a combination that tastes good and keeps me full until lunch. Most mornings, I add a packet of stevia, a splash of maple syrup, some flax seeds, sliced almonds, dried berries, and apple pie spice. The prep takes me all of four minutes, and it’s kind of fun. I pour almond milk over the mixture and let it soak until I get to work. Then I pop it in the microwave for 75 seconds, and voila! My cheap-a$$ breakfast is ready.

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Even if you add the cost of the almond milk, stevia, and other miscellany it is still cheaper than $1 per serving. Who knew saving money could be delicious?

With the holidays fast approaching, I’m doing what I can to eat as “clean” as humanly possible.  See, I realize the caloric onslaught will be unavoidable (technically, I could avoid it, but that’s not any fun), so I’m doing what I can to minimize the damage.  One of my stop-gap measures has been having a green smoothie for breakfast.  It’s cheap, it’s pretty quick, and by God it feels healthy going down.

I normally prepare my smoothie shortly before I leave for work, after my boyfriend has already left.  Last week though, I had to be in early so I was in the kitchen blending away when my boyfriend was leaving.  He peered at the blender, a look of unmasked disgust across his face.  I was happily shoving another handful of spinach into the frothy green concoction.

“You know,” he remarked, “this process usually takes place inside the body.  It’s called mastication and digestion.”

“You know,” I calmly replied, “this process (gesturing to my blender) usually takes place when you’re already at work, so I don’t have to hear commentary from the peanut gallery.”

Zing! Hee-hee!

There are a million different green smoothie recipes out there. Mine is the down and dirty, cheap as sh!t version.  I can’t always afford to buy organic produce, so I’ve pared this down to ingredients I can reliably find for a reasonable price.

Handful or two of spinach

If you have it, maybe a little kale although romaine is a little more palatable

Two apples, cored and chopped.

One banana, cut into pieces.

Extras: juice of half a lemon, a stalk of celery, a pear if I feel fancy.

I chuck these into my blender a bit at a time with a good amount of water, and blend the crap out of them until it’s like a green milkshake.

Then I drink it.  Allllll of it.  It tastes pretty good, in spite of my boyfriend’s snarky comments (he won’t even try it, so what does he know!). The trick is to really blend it well.  If you have a Vitamixer: USE IT, fancy-pants!

Let’s raise a glass of green goodness to our health, happiness, and ability to zip our jeansgreen without pliers and prayer come January!

Xoxo,

SY

This morning, I woke up in my very own Brooklyn!! Next to my very own Lovely Boyfriend!! Granted, it was 4:45 AM and I was wide awake (thanks, Jet Lag), but that’s just a minor detail! I tried not to wake up Lovely Boyfriend (let’s call him LB) as I bounded out of bed. Seeing as it is LB’s birthday today, I thought that I would make good use of my early morning rising and surprise him with some breakfast.

I headed to the butcher’s shop, but was sad to learn that they hadn’t yet opened. I guess it’s the baker that opens at the crack of dawn. Clearly, I have limited experience with early morning vendors.

I ambled dejectedly into the local bodega (which is more of an overpriced health food shop than a true bodega) with a single goal: BACON. Now, I’ve recently converted to vegetarianism, but that doesn’t mean LB has. And I can’t think of a better way to say “I love you” than thick, fatty slabs of breakfast bacon (in the shape of a heart, if all goes according to plan – eat your heart out, Hallmark).

As I was perusing the depressing assortment of Oscar Mayer’s finest pork (why couldn’t you be open, butcher? why??), my stomach growled. I felt a pang of uneasiness – what if this is the part where I waffle about being a vegetarian and do a swan dive into the increasingly tempting variety of pork products in front of me?? Is this that part?

No, it would not be. I marched determinedly over to the closest NON-MEAT section, which happened to be the dairy section. Before India, I wasn’t too into dairy. One tango with intestinal bacteria later, I’m a fan. Probiotics are my friend. I snapped up a bottle of low–fat, strawberry kefir. I settled on a package of thick cut bacon for LB, and grabbed a banana and a package of chia seeds on my way to the register.

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El Breakfast of Championes, ole!

I needed a quick breakfast that didn’t involve cooking or blending (my beloved blender is packed away in storage for the time being). It had to be filling, as it was still DIRT EARLY and who knows when LB would be rolling out of bed. I wanted it to be nutritious, as I would very soon be facing the ultimate vegetarian breaker: Delicious, freshly cooked bacon. Kefir, give me strength!!

Back at the bat cave, I chopped up the banana and chucked it, along with a teaspoon of chia seeds, into a cup of kefir. A quick mix and breakfast was done! Best of all, it was pretty darn good. Chia seeds are kind of expensive, but they’re a great investment. A teaspoon of these suckers in some yogurt or a smoothie will keep you feeling full for hours. Overall, it had a little more sugar in it than I would prefer, but for a quick fix, I’d call this experiment a success. 🙂 Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a heart-shaped bacon arrangement to assemble.

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It’s a face only a momma could love, but trust: It’s good. 🙂