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HEALTH MINDED  .   .   .


DIETING CAN KEEP YOUR METABOLISM IN ORDER

Your body needs some fat to work well. But fat is high in calories, and it doesn’t keep you feeling full. This can lead you to eat more later, taking in even more calories. And indulging in fatty foods for even a short time can worsen your metabolism. One study found that just 5 days of eating a high-fat diet can hurt your muscles’ ability to process glucose. This can lead to weight gain, diabetes, and other health problems.

ONE BITE AT A TIME SLIM

We’d all love a magic pill or food that makes weight loss easy and permanent. But until either one comes around, healthy eating is still your best bet. The trick is to choose foods that do three things:

  • Keep your tummy full
  • Don’t cause major spikes in your blood sugar (too much sugar in your blood gets stored as fat) Support a healthy metabolism -- your body’s system for turning what you eat and drink into energy.

Always Eat

If the rule of weight loss is to burn more calories than you take in, not eating should make you lose weight fast, right? Wrong. Animal studies show that with less eating, the body goes into “starvation mode,” burning fewer calories to conserve energy. Also, you’ll be short on nutrients, making you tired and sluggish. To get your pep back, you might be tempted to eat sugary or fatty foods, which will pack all those skipped calories back on.

Choose Iodine-Rich Foods

The thyroid gland plays a key role in helping your metabolism burn calories and control your appetite. To do its job, your thyroid needs healthy levels of iodine. Most people in the U.S. get all the iodine they need through a regular diet, but some foods have more iodine than others. Make sure you get at least some common sources.

Show Legumes Some Love

This makes your metabolism work harder to digest them and keeps you feeling full longer. Studies have shown that lentils can help you eat less and lower your body weight and waist measurements. Beans also have something called resistant starch, which is linked to higher rates of fat metabolism.

Water, Part I: Drink Up

Water supports your metabolism in ways that might surprise you. The trick is to drink more than usual, or drink it instead of beverages with calories. Research suggests that water may:

  • Help you take in fewer calories
  • Boost calorie burning if you’re obese
  • Help your body burn fat

Water, Part II: Put It on Ice

Want to bump up the health benefits of water? Drink it very cold. Your digestive system burns extra calories -- about eight -- to get it to room temperature. Eight calories per glass isn’t much, but it adds up over the course of a day, and especially over a week. 

Get Your Calcium

When you think of the role of calcium, strong bones probably come to mind. You can thank your metabolism for that, as it helps your body get calcium from food. Some studies suggest calcium can also help you shed pounds and fat, but it’s too early to know for sure. Still, you can’t go wrong with healthy, calcium-rich foods in your diet. These include low-fat dairy, broccoli, and canned sardines or salmon, which have soft, edible bones. 

Don’t Be Ginger About Ginger

This funny-looking root packs all kinds of health benefits: It can soothe an upset tummy and ease arthritis pain and swelling. Research shows it may also have a powerful effect on body weight and blood sugar. One study found that drinking a hot ginger drink with breakfast lowered feelings of hunger and had a strong thermogenic (calorie-burning) effect. You can savor its spicy kick in tea and Asian dishes such as stir-fries and soups. 

Be Less Refined About Grains

Love Chinese takeout? Do your metabolism a favor and ask for brown rice instead of white rice. Brown rice is a whole grain, while white rice -- which has been stripped of the brown nutrient-rich layer -- is a refined one. Some studies show that whole grains have an effect on weight loss, but the jury’s still out on that. Whole grains, unlike refined ones, support your body in key ways: 

  • Appetite control
  • Nutrient supply
  • Sustained energy

Low-Glycemic Foods Keep Sugar in Tact

Low-glycemic index (low-GI) foods are relatively low in carbohydrates. Your body digests them more slowly than high-carb, high-glycemic index foods. That means your blood sugar doesn’t surge when you eat them. Research suggests low-GI diets can help stop diabetes, heart disease, and even some cancers. Low-GI foods include green veggies, chickpeas, most fruits, beans, and bran breakfast cereals. 

 Artificial Sweeteners Can be OK

Low- or no-calorie sweeteners sometimes get a bad rap for being unhealthy. There are even a few studies in animals that suggest they promote weight gain. In truth, low- and no-calorie sweeteners are safe in moderation, according to numerous studies and scientific bodies. So don’t be afraid to empty a packet or two into your morning coffee if that helps you stick to the golden rule of weight loss: Burn more calories than you take in.

Steer Clear of Sugar-Sweetened Drinks

The obvious reason sugar-sweetened beverages are a no-no for your waistline: They have lots of calories. Some research suggests they can also negatively impact your metabolism beyond the “calories in, calories out” rule. Juice, regular soda, sweet tea, and other sugary drinks may increase the risk of type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, and body fat. Several studies have shown that sugar also increases cholesterol levels.

Easy on the Alcohol

It’s easy to forget about calories in what you drink, and the ones in alcohol add up quickly. A 12-ounce beer has about 150 calories -- 100 in a light brew. There are about 100 calories in a 1½-ounce shot of rum, whiskey, or vodka, and a pina colada packs 490! Alcohol can also stimulate your appetite. The weight you gain from it tends to settle on your belly, which can cause heart disease, diabetes, and raise your breast cancer risk. 


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Chocolate Competition Winners with Elsa Granados

13th ANNUAL CHOCOLATE DE VINE FEATURES KEYNOTE JENNY SCHATZLE ON RAPE MISCONCEPTIONS & FINDING HELP

Local Chocolate & Wine Favorites Reign at 2023 STESA Fundraiser

By Bonnie Carroll

 

Jenny Schatzle, Keynote Speaker

Renowned Fitness Expert Jenny Schatzle was the keynote speaker at the 13th Annual Chocolate de Vine fundraiser at Saint Barbara Greek Orthodox Event Center, where guests showed up in their best afternoon soirée garb to enjoy a mouth-watering celebration of chocolate & wine at the annual Standing Together to End Sexual Assault fundraiser. 


STESA Overflowed with Wine, Chocolate, and Auction Fun

A powerful and poignant message on the vulnerability of women caught in the wrong place at the wrong time reminded everyone in the audience that any woman out having fun with friends in a local pub can easily become the victim of a stalking rapist, and not necessarily have a Lancelot show up to recognize what was happening and intercede to offer protection. She shared if a young, inebriated woman is raped and traumatized she is often to terrified to tell anyone or get the help she needs. Traditionally, women have been afraid to “rock the boat” and told no one, she said. STESA is working to rebrand their previous name because no one would rent them office space to provide help. STESA members were told “it would be bad for business. It was such a challenging subject,” she said. “There must be a place to heal, and STESA provides it 365 days a year 24 hours a day,” said Schatzle.

Elsa Granados, Executive Director & Ali Cortez, Emcee

A rousing paddle auction lead by Emcee and Auctioneer Ali Cortes raised some big bucks for the organization and included exciting trips and accommodations to fabulous destinations. My guest Alicia Sorkin, sister board member of mine from Santa Barbara Puerto Vallarta Sister Cities Committee, won a valuable bottle of Lucas & Lewellen fine wine, and I won an Anna’s Market Place Bakery certificate in the Balloon Pop.  

Debra Goldman, Owner CARP Kitchen Grocery, 2023 Best Chocolate & Table Top

The benefit offered fabulous chocolate creations from local chocolatiers including Carp Kitchen, Chocolate Maya, Got Matcha, Fresco Café, Imagine Wine, La Lieff Winery, Ofrenda Wine, Potek Winery, Sweetzer Cellars, Tierra Y Vino, Stoplman wines and delicious bites from California Catering, and Fresco Café. The event featured a judged competition of chocolate creations including Best Tabletop Presentation and the coveted People’s Choice Award. Winners included Carp Kitchen and Got Matcha.

The Chocolate de Vine fundraiser benefited Standing Together To End Sexual Assault, founded in 1974 originally under the name Santa Barbara Rape Crisis Center, changed to STESA in 2018, to support survivors of sexual assault.  STESA offers a 24-hour hotline, crisis and long-term counseling, self-defense programs, and sexual assault prevention education programs.  All services are offered, regardless of ability to pay, in English and Spanish. For additional information visit: www.sbstesa.org or call 805-965-3271.

♦  ♦  ♦

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EASY PEASEY SALMON CHOWDER SOUP

Cook Time:30 minsTotal Time:30 mins Servings:6 Yield:6 servings, about 1 1/2 cups each Nutrition Profile:

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil

  • cup chopped carrot

  • cup chopped celery

  • 4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth

  • 1 ½ cups water

  • 1 12-ounce skinned salmon fillet, preferably wild-caught (see Note and Tip)

  • 2 1/2 cups frozen cauliflower florets, thawed and coarsely chopped

  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives or scallions, or 1 1/2 tablespoons dried chives

  • 1 1/3 cups instant mashed potato flakes (see Note), or 2 cups leftover mashed potatoes

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill, or 2 teaspoons dried tarragon

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

  • ¼ teaspoon salt

  • Freshly ground pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Heat oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add carrot and celery and cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables just begin to brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Add broth, water, salmon, cauliflower and chives (or scallions) and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook, maintaining a gentle simmer, until the salmon is just cooked through, 5 to 8 minutes. Remove the salmon to a clean cutting board. Flake into bite-size pieces with a fork.

  2. Stir potato flakes (or leftover mashed potatoes), dill (or tarragon) and mustard into the soup until well blended. Return to a simmer. Add the salmon and reheat. Season with salt and pepper.

Tips

Wild-caught salmon from the Pacific (Alaska and Washington) are more sustainably fished and have a larger, more stable population. For more information, visit Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch (mbayaq.org/cr/seafoodwatch.asp).

To skin a salmon fillet, place on a clean cutting board, skin side down. Starting at the tail end, slip the blade of a long, sharp knife between the fish flesh and the skin, holding the skin down firmly with your other hand. Gently push the blade along at a 30° angle, separating the fillet from the skin without cutting through either.

Instant mashed potato flakes is not a product that we typically use in our recipes, but we love how it gives creamy texture to soup without adding extra fat. Look for a brand that has the fewest ingredients possible (and therefore little to no artificial additives or flavoring). At our local market, the store brand was the best choice.


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© 2008 Bonnie Carroll, All Rights Reserved