Monday, August 31, 2009


Nothing special going on here... Day 3 of Detox... not to hard. I should have a nice loss this week. A little behind in my water drinking today... but will be caught up by the end of the night. I drink 8 glasses a day of water. I don't count other drinks as water - I know Weight Watchers' says it's okay to do so, I don't think so.

I'll hit my 5 mile walking goal today. I aim to walk 5 miles on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays... and on Tuesdays and Thursdays 10 miles. On the weekends I don't set any goals - just to stay On Program, which I've been pretty good about.
To speed up my loss rate I rarely use any of my activity points or flex points. I aim to earn 28 activity points a week... sometimes I make it, sometimes I don't. Usually depends on if I have an active weekend.

So far today I've walked 5811 steps = 2.38... I haven't exercised today, that's another 3 miles I'll get in today... not bad. I'll complete about 7 miles of walking today, not bad.

Sunday, August 30, 2009


I'm sorry I haven't been around much... I have a million excuses/reasons... my daughter's been on summer break and hogging up the computer. Work has been crazy. I'm still trying to handle the Ross situation. I've been exercising a lot more with leaves me less time to sit in front of the computer. I haven't updated any of my blogs in a long time... and the list can go on.

The good news is last week I got my 3o pound award! I'm currently down 31.2 pounds! 165! I've given myself two weeks to get under 160. I think I can do it.

I finished my first round of the Fat Smash Diet. I didn't do it perfectly but good enough to drop a whole bunch of weight. I gave myself about a week on phase 4 (which is the final maintenance phase) then started my second round. I'm on day 3 of Phase 1 round 2. I feel good. I've been exercising 5 days a week for an hour a day... My legs are SUPER toned... I've lost about 6 inches off my waist, and a few here and there... I carry the most fat in my belly area. My waist is now slightly under 33 inches which taking me out of being high risk for Diabetes (due to fat).

I feel good... my body is changing and better toning techniques will be needed soon, but right now I'm working on just losing the weight and cardio mostly.

I've dropped from a 34.8 BMI (obese) to a 29.2 (overweight)... not bad. I won't be out of the overweight category until I'm at Weight Watcher's goal... which won't be long! 140 here I come. Only 25 more pounds to go. I want to be there before Christmas... that would be nice. My personal goal is 5 pounds lighter than that... 135.

I feel good about my body, stronger, healthier, just not happier... but we'll see what happens...

I promise to get back to my blogging ways. Vi starts school tomorrow so the computer will be free'd up more. I also need to find some time to make another video. Haven't made one of those in a while. My last one was introducing my 33 by 33 Challenge and I'm also done with it now... gotta do another video soon.

I hope you're all doing well... I'll be reading some blogs again soon too... I haven't forgotten about ya!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Super Sandwich Stuffed with Chicken Salad

POINTS® Value: 3
Servings: 4
Preparation Time: 20 min
Cooking Time: 0 min
Level of Difficulty: Easy
What could be better than a meal you don't have to cook? Just assemble a nutrient-rich salad in a large bowl and save it. When you're on the go, stuff it into a whole-wheat pita and head off.


1/4 cup(s) plain fat-free yogurt

1/4 cup(s) fat-free mayonnaise
1/4 tsp ginger root
6 oz chicken breast, cooked, skinless, cubed
1/2 cup(s) grapes, red, seedless, halved
1/4 cup(s) celery, chopped
1/4 cup(s) carrot(s), grated
2 medium scallion(s), chopped

1 tsp chopped walnuts

2 large wheat pita(s), split in half
12 cup(s) romaine lettuce, leaves


  • Combine yogurt, mayonnaise, ginger and cooked chicken together in a large bowl until chicken is well-coated.

  • Stir in grapes, celery, carrots, scallions and chopped walnuts. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

  • Place about 3 romaine lettuce leaves in each pita half. Add about 1/2 cup of chicken salad mixture.

Friday, August 28, 2009

California Table Grapes

A perfect finger-food, a sweet snack and a lovely garnish, California table grapes are a simply divine fruit!

There are few things more highly anticipated than the first ripe strawberry of spring or a crisp fall apple, just days off the tree. In our Market Fresh series, we look at the produce in season this month and offer quick and easy suggestions for how to enjoy it.

It's no shocker that grapes are one of America's most popular fruits—they're sweet, crisp and bite-sized, not to mention readily available year-round. With 97 percent of America's table grape supply coming from California, it's likely that the clusters you're buying in the supermarket from June through November are from the Golden State (during the winter months, our grape supply comes mainly from Chile). Whether you've enjoyed them fresh, frozen, dried into raisins or preserved into a jam, chances are you're no stranger to this fruit of the vine.

Do it for your health.
Over 130 years ago, famed cereal maker John Harvey Kellogg is said to have prescribed 10 to 14 pounds of grapes per day as a cure for high blood pressure. And zany as his "cure" was, it may have been rooted in science. According to the USDA, grape skins contain the phytonutrient resveratrol, which studies have shown may help reduce the risk of heart disease and certain types of cancer. What's certain is that a 3/4-cup serving of California table grapes contains only 90 calories and 1 gram of fat as well as vitamins A and C, iron, calcium, dietary fiber and antioxidants that help protect the cells in the body.

Selection, Preparation and Storage
California table grapes come in three basic colors: green (sometimes called white), red and blue-black. Sweet and juicy Thompson seedless grapes are the most popular variety. Reach for firm, plump clusters securely attached to their stems, which should be green, not brown. Red and blue-black varieties should not show any hints of green, and the greenish-white grapes will display a slight amber tint when ripe. Once harvested, grapes do not ripen or sweeten, so you should choose grapes that are ready to eat. Be on the lookout for signs of decay: shriveling, stickiness, brown spots or dry stems.

Fresh grapes may be kept in the refrigerator for up to three days stored in a covered container or plastic bag. Wash grape clusters just before you're ready to eat them and pat dry. Serve grapes slightly chilled to enhance their natural crispness. To remove seeds, cut grapes in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds with the point of a knife. If you're looking to peel the grapes, try running frozen grapes under lukewarm water until skins split, then just slide the skins right off.

How to Use California Table Grapes
We heard these great grape tips through the grapevine (actually, they're from Megan Fawn Schlow, food stylist and recipe developer in New York City):

Freeze them.
Use frozen grapes instead of ice as a natural way to sweeten cold drinks.

Make a grape slush.
Put frozen grapes in the blender and blend with enough water to make a slush.

Roast grapes for flavor.
Add fresh or roasted grapes to salads for a little something extra. To roast grapes, place them on a baking tray in a 400° F oven for 10-15 minutes, or until soft and juicy.

Make your own raisins.
Create your own add-in to oatmeal or a yummy stand-alone snack. Just place grapes on a metal mesh rack and leave in a 250° F oven for 8 hours until they're dried out. Store the raisins in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

Stuff grapes for an easy appetizer.
Combine 3 tablespoons low-fat cream cheese and 1 tablespoon crumbled blue cheese. Cut slits in fresh grapes, fill with a smear of the cheese mixture and top with a sprinkling of toasted, chopped pecans.

Hint: For all recipes, use red or green seedless grapes or seeded grapes with the seeds removed.

Originally posted on

Thursday, August 27, 2009

ZERO POINTS - Spinach-Parmesan Dip

POINTS® Value: 0
Servings: 8
Preparation Time: 10 min
Cooking Time: 0 min
Level of Difficulty: Easy
You have to love a zero POINTS value dip that not only livens up crudite but also doubles as a fabulous finishing sauce for grilled chicken or pasta.


1/2 pound(s) spinach, cooked and drained
1 cup(s) tomato(es), chopped

1 cup(s) basil, fresh

1/2 tsp table salt

1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

5 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese


  • Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender; process to desired consistency. Yields about 3 tablespoons per serving.


  • We recommend a high quality cheese such as Parmigiano-Reggiano for the best flavor.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

ZERO POINTS - Roasted Eggplant and Tomato

POINTS® Value: 0
Servings: 8
Preparation Time: 8 min
Cooking Time: 60 min
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Works with Simply Filling
Enjoy this summer recipe as a side dish, dip, pasta topping or as a sauce for your favorite lasagna.


1 spray(s) cooking spray
1 medium raw eggplant, not peeled
1/2 large onion(s), peeled
2 cup(s) tomato(es), roughly chopped

1/4 cup(s) basil, fresh, thinly sliced (or more to taste)

1 tsp table salt

1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

2 tsp olive oil


  • Preheat oven to 375˚F. Coat a shallow nonstick roasting pan or baking sheet with cooking spray.

  • Pierce eggplant many times with a sharp knife; place on roasting pan with onion. Coat vegetables with cooking spray; roast for 30 minutes. Flip vegetables; roast for 30 minutes more.

  • Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper; set aside at room temperature until vegetables are finished cooking.

  • When roasted eggplant is cool enough to handle but is still hot, slice it open and scoop out small chunks (so you do not get any skin). Add eggplant to tomato mixture; toss well.

  • Next, discard outer layer of roasted onion and chop into bite-size pieces; toss with tomato mixture. Serve warm or cold. Yields about 1/2 cup per serving.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

ZERO POINTS - Cauliflower Poppers

POINTS® Value: 0
Servings: 8
Preparation Time: 10 min
Cooking Time: 10 min
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Works with Simply Filling
Great as a side dish or as a snack. An unbeatable combo of flavor, texture and spice.


1 spray(s) cooking spray
1 small head(s) cauliflower
1/2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp chili powder, or more to taste

1/2 tsp table salt

1/2 tsp black pepper


  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.

  • Cut cauliflower florets into bite-sized pieces (there should be about 4 cups). Place cauliflower in a medium bowl and add cumin, chili powder, salt and pepper; toss well to coat.

  • Spread cauliflower on prepared baking sheet and bake until cauliflower is tender, but not mushy, stirring halfway through, about 10 minutes. Yields about 1/2 cup per serving.

Monday, August 24, 2009

ZERO POINTS - Pepper and Mushroom Kabobs with a Yogurt-Dill Dip

POINTS® Value: 0
Servings: 8
Preparation Time: 10 min
Cooking Time: 10 min
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Works with Simply Filling
Set out a platter of these skewers and the crowd will go wild. They're served with a creamy garlic-dill dip for fantastic flavor.


1 small garlic clove(s)

1/8 tsp table salt

1 tsp fresh dill, minced
1/4 cup(s) fat-free sour cream
1/2 cup(s) plain fat-free yogurt, Greek-variety recommended
3 medium sweet red pepper(s), or 1 each red, yellow and green pepper
16 small cremini mushrooms, or white mushrooms, cleaned and trimmed

2 spray(s) olive oil cooking spray

1/4 tsp table salt

1/4 tsp black pepper


  • To prepare dip, mash garlic and 1/8 teaspoon of salt together in a small serving bowl with a serrated spoon or a utensil with a sharp edge. Stir in dill, sour cream and yogurt; set aside.

  • Preheat grill to high. To prepare kabobs, core and seed each pepper; cut each into 8 chunks. Arrange 3 pieces of pepper and 2 mushrooms on each of eight 12-inch metal skewers. Lightly coat kabobs with cooking spray; season with salt and pepper.

  • Grill kabobs until peppers are tender and lightly browned, about 5 minutes per side. Serve kabobs with dip. Yields 1 kabob and about 1 1/2 tablespoons of dip per serving.


  • For even more flavor, stir 1 teaspoon of freshly minced chives into the dip.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

No-Cook Dinners #10

Chef's Orchard Salad

Place 1 1/2 cups mixed greens on each of two plates. Top each set of greens with 1/2 peach, pitted and thinly sliced; 1/4-cup blueberries; 1/4-cup small red seedless grapes; 3 ounces thinly-sliced deli roast beef; and 2 tablespoons bottled fat-free vinaigrette.

value: 5

Saturday, August 22, 2009

No-Cook Dinners #9

Mozzarella and Tomato

Thinly slice two large beefsteak tomatoes. Layer the slices with 4 ounces thinly sliced part-skim mozzarella and 12 basil leaves. Sprinkle the stacks with 2 teaspoons aged balsamic vinegar and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Serving size: 1 1/2 cups
POINTS value: 4

Optional: Accompany each serving with 4 ounces cooked large shrimp, drizzled with a splash of white wine vinegar.
POINTS value: 6

Friday, August 21, 2009

No-Cook Dinners #8

Thai Summer Rolls

Soak 6 Thai rice paper wrappers (available in the Asian aisle of most supermarkets) in warm water until soft, about 10 seconds. Lay them flat on your work surface and top each with 1 large cooked cocktail shrimp (about 1 ounce), 2 cucumber slices, 2 tablespoons shredded carrot, 1 tablespoon minced scallion (green part only), and 1/2 teaspoon hoisin sauce. Roll to seal in the filling; serve immediately or wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 hour.

Serving size: 3 rolls
POINTS value: 4

Thursday, August 20, 2009

No-Cook Dinners #7

Two Bean Chili Salad with Smoked Chicken
Drain and rinse one 14 1/2-ounce can French-style green beans and place them in a large bowl. Toss with 1 cup canned kidney beans, drained and rinsed; 6 ounces chopped store-bought smoked chicken breast; 1 tablespoon cider vinegar; 2 teaspoons chili powder; 2 teaspoons olive oil; salt to taste; and ground pepper to taste.
Serving size: 1 1/2 cups
POINTS value: 6

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

No-Cook Dinners #6

Chunky Roast Chicken Slaw

Pull 6 ounces of white meat off a store-bought roast chicken. Mix with 1 small Napa cabbage, finely shredded; 1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and shredded; 1 celery stalk, thinly sliced; 1 small shallot, minced; and 1/4-cup low-fat ranch dressing.

Serving size: 2 cups
POINTS value: 5

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

No-Cook Dinners #5


Toss 4 ounces sea scallops, thinly sliced, and 4 ounces skinned red snapper filet, diced, with 1/2 cup fresh lime juice in a medium glass bowl. Cover and refrigerate until the fish becomes opaque, about 1 hour. Drain, then toss with 1 large tomato, diced; 1/2 medium avocado, pitted, peeled, and diced; 1 small red onion, minced; 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro; 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice; 3 dashes hot pepper sauce; salt to taste; and ground pepper to taste. Serve immediately, cold, on a bed of shredded iceberg lettuce. NOTE: Ask for sushi-grade fish at your market.

Serving size: 1 cup
POINTS value: 5

Monday, August 17, 2009

No-Cook Dinners #4

Melon and Berries with Poppyseed Dressing

Combine 1 cup diced watermelon, seeded or seedless; 1 cup diced honeydew melon; 1 cup sliced strawberries; and 1 cup raspberries. Toss with 1/4-cup bottled low-fat poppy seed dressing. Serve over 1/2 cup 1% low-fat cottage cheese.

Serving size: 2 cups
POINTS value: 5

Sunday, August 16, 2009

No-Cook Dinners #3

Bombay Tuna Salad

Drain a 6-ounce can of chunk white tuna packed in water and place in a bowl. Mix with 1/4-cup fat-free mayonnaise; 1 celery stalk, thinly sliced; 2 tablespoons minced red onion; 2 tablespoons sliced almonds; 2 tablespoons golden raisins; 2 teaspoons curry powder; 2 teaspoons lemon juice; and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Place a bed of Boston or Bibb lettuce on each of two plates and divide tuna between them.

value: 4

Saturday, August 15, 2009

No-Cook Dinners #2

Cranberry-Nut Turkey Roll Ups

Spread two medium low-fat whole-wheat tortillas each with 1 tablespoon whole-berry cranberry sauce and 1 tablespoon fat-free mayonnaise. Top each with 3 ounces thickly sliced deli turkey breast, 1 leaf romaine lettuce, and 1 teaspoon chopped pecans. Roll up and serve.

value: 4

Friday, August 14, 2009

DSDiva?! Where You Been?!

Hi Everyone. I'm sorry I haven't been posting my norm. I've been sticking to program - as of yesterday I am officially down 29 pounds! 27 more pounds until I reach WW's goal and 32 more until I reach my personal goal!

I haven't been feeling good emotionally. Ross and I are still not back together - talking but not together. Even though we talk it's tough on me. I miss him, I miss his affection. I don't want to blast my love life on here... but felt it I needed to mention why I've been absent.

Everyday is a challenge - somedays are good, others not so good - those are the days I struggle to get through the day. Everyone tells me it gets easlier... but honestly for me it's not. I miss him like crazy.

On a positive note, I have been getting in 5 days of exercise a week - all weeks except last week because my right lower leg was really bothering me. I'm back to my five days this week. Not much else to report... all my clothes are fitting big, and people are starting to notice my weight loss which is nice.

Well... I guess that's about it for today. I promise I'll be back - with a spiffier me - hopefully soon.

Happy Losing...

Thursday, August 13, 2009

No-Cook Dinners #1

Cantaloupe Soup with Basil and Crab

Puree 2 cups cubed cantaloupe with 1/2 cup mango nectar. Pour the mixture into a large bowl and stir in 1 small shallot, minced; 6 basil leaves, shredded; 3 dashes hot pepper sauce; and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Chill at least 2 hours. Top each serving with 3 ounces cooked lump crab meat, picked over for shell and cartilage.

Serving size: 1 1/4 cups
POINTS® value: 3

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Blackberry-Peach Smoothie

POINTS® Value: 2
Servings: 1
Preparation Time: 5 min
Cooking Time: 0 min
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Works with Simply Filling
Having trouble getting in your fruit servings? This awesome combination of sweet peaches and tart blackberries goes down real smooth.


3/4 cup(s) ice cube(s)
2 medium peach(es), peeled, pitted and quartered
1/4 cup(s) blackberries
1/2 cup(s) fat-free skim milk


  • Place ice in a blender container; add peaches, blackberries and milk.

  • Blend on high until smooth and ice is completely crushed, about 3 to 4 minutes. Yields 1 serving.


  • Peel the peaches with a sturdy vegetable peeler. Or you can skin them by dipping the peaches in boiling water for 1 minute and then removing the skins with a paring knife.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Pesto Sauce

POINTS® Value: 2
Servings: 4
Preparation Time: 12 min
Cooking Time: 3 min
Level of Difficulty: Easy
Works with Simply Filling
Our slimmed-down version of this Italian classic relies on chicken broth — and just a touch of olive oil — for texture.


2 Tbsp pine nuts

2 cup(s) basil, leaves, fresh
1/2 cup(s) reduced-sodium chicken broth

1/4 cup(s) grated Parmesan cheese

1 Tbsp olive oil

2 medium garlic clove(s), peeled

1/2 tsp table salt


  • Place pine nuts in a small skillet and set pan over medium heat. Cook until nuts are golden, shaking pan frequently to prevent burning, about 3 minutes. Transfer nuts to a plate to cool.

  • In a blender or food processor, combine nuts, basil, broth, cheese, oil, garlic and salt; process until smooth and thick. Yields about 1/4 cup per serving.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Bye-Bye Belly #9

- Move! A Duke University study showed that a couch-potato lifestyle resulted in an 11.6 percent increase in deep-belly fat in women over eight months.

- Try Pilates. According to a Greek study, these exercises significantly improve posture - and that naturally minimizes a pooch.

- Another reason to stop smoking: Nicotine keeps abs from burning fat, so smokers often have more deep-tissue belly fat.

- Relax. Women with the largest waistlines also reported the highest stress levels, possibly due to the production of the stress hormone cortisol, Yale University research showed.

- Beat the blues. Depression is associated with higher rates of abdominal fat in women, says a study published in Obesity.

- Get more sleep. Women who get only five hours of shut-eye a night are almost twice as likely to be obese as those who get seven hours, Columbia University researchers point out.

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Bye-Bye Belly #8

- Research out of Spain shows that a diet rich in monounsaturated fats, like a Mediterranean diet, can prevent belly fat.

- Ban trans-fat. Monkeys who got much of their dietary fat from trans fats had 30 percent more belly flab than those who ate more monounsaturated fats, a Wake Forest University study found.

- Go easy on fiber. Too much can leave you bloated, Schorr-Lesnick says. Aim for at least 20 grams per day, but add it to your diet gradually, and be sure to pair it with plenty of H2O.

- University of South Australia researchers found that overweight people who took 6 grams of fish oil every day for three months and exercised three times a week nixed bod fat, especially from their middles.

- Get your C. Women who took in 56 milligrams or less per day (the recommended dietary allowance is 60 mg) were more likely to accumulate belly fat than those who got 57 mg or more, a Journal of Public Health Nutrition study found.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Bye-Bye Belly #7

- Get your daily dose from yogurt, rather than other dairy sources or supplements; its calcium may help whittle your middle an International Journal of Obesity study points out. But...

- Choose yogurt wisely. Rats who ate saccharin-sweetened yogurt gained more weight and body fat - including around the waistline - than those who ate sugar-sweetened yogurt, Purdue University researchers found.

- Dieters noshing on 3 ounces of almonds a day trimmed their waist-lines by nearly 7 inches after 24 weeks, versus less than 5 inches among the non-almond-eaters, a study published in the International Journal of Obesity showed.

- Enjoy soy. Women sipping soy shakes every day for three months didn't add any midlife fat to their middles, according to research from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

- Pick lean protein. Moderate servings - about 40 percent of your daily calories - in your diet may lead to overall weight loss, particularly in the tummy, a study from Skidmore College reveals.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Bye-Bye Belly #6

- Pass on the gum. Not only can chewing it make you swallow air, but sugar alcohols in sugar-free gum and mints can cause a blown-up belly Bonci reveals.

- Choose rice. Unlike most starches, it doesn't produce gas as it's digested. No gas, no bloating.

- Eat well, eat more. Women in the Framingham Nutrition Studies who ate 360 more calories of healthier foods per day were less prone to ab fat than those who ate fewer calories, more saturated fat, and less fiber.

- Obese adults who cut calories and increase whole-grain intake zapped more tummy pooch than those who stuck to refined grains, Penn State researchers found.

- Up your calcium. Dieters who got 1,200 to 1,300 milligrams of daily calcium saw three times the belly trimming as those consuming the same calories but less calcium, University of Tennessee researchers said.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Bye-Bye Belly #5

- Try probiotics. They help break down food, preventing bloating and gas.

- Peppermint, chamomile, and fennel tea can relieve irritable bowel syndrome, which may cause gas and bloating, Schorr-Lesnick explains.

- Nix broccoli. it contains raffinose, an indigestible carb that'll puff you up like a parade float, Leslie Bonci, RD, says.

- Ditto for cabbage, cauliflower, and Brussels sprouts. If you must eat these veggies...

- Take Beano before-hand. Bonci says, a caplet or two will break down bloat-causing chemicals.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Emotions, Food, Less of Me...

I know I didn't announce it but did change my stats on the side... but last Thursday I weighed in at 169! YEAH BABY! I'M 160-SOMETHING NOW! Down 27.2 pounds!

This week has been an emotional roller coaster... Ross is back... and it just intensified everything I was feeling before. I've done some not so good eatting... not crazy stuff but not on my Fat Smash Diet... I am pretty sure I've stayed with in my points but had restricted food. I think I'll still be at 169 but gained a few ounces... I'm re-dedicating myself tomorrow back to the Fat Smash Diet. TOMORROW!

I have kept up my working out... kicking ass in that department!

Ross got back on Friday... and we've been doing a lot of talking and texting. It feels good to have contact with him. He's means a lot to me and I'm happy he made it back safely. I love that man!

Today, I'm trying to eat super light because tomorrow's weigh in. I had a Weight Watcher's Smoothie for breakfast... gonna have some veggies for lunch, possibly a fruit too... and for dinner another smoothie... with TONS of water!

Wish me luck tomorrow!

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Bye-Bye Belly #4

- Don't binge. Regular, non-binge drinkers have less tummy padding than women who drink infrequently but heavily, a Journal of Nutrition study says.

- Avoid carbonation. Fizzy drinks are full of gas - and you will be, too, if you drink them, Beth Schorr-Lesnick, MD, says. The result? A not-so-svelte profile.

- Cut back on energy drinks. Your body turns sugary, caffeine-laden drinks into fat faster than caffeine-free ones, spelling danger for your waistline, one New Zealand researcher notes.

- Don't sip through a straw - you'll swallow extra air, which will show up on your middle, Schorr-Lesnick reveals.

- Next time you're gassy, take activated-charcoal caplets (sold at most drugstores) to keep your tummy from swelling, Schorr-Lesnick says.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Bye-Bye Belly #3

- Do More. Duke University researchers found that jogging 20 miles per week burns more belly fat than covering 12 miles per week.

- Work in intervals. Women who did 20 minutes of interval training three times a week lost more belly fat than women who logged 40 minutes of moderate cardio three times a week, according to an Australian study.

- Watch your brew. Beer drinkers have the highest waist-to-hip ratios of those who have six o more drinks a week, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill research says.

- Have a little wine. Light to moderate wine drinking can protect against ab poundage, some studies suggest. But...

- Sip just one daily glass of vino or other alcoholic beverage - more will build your belly instead.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

A Big Belly Could Make You Feel Hungry

Your stomach could, indeed, have a mind of it's own. A new Canadian study suggests that fat around your midsection actually produces a hormone that makes you hungry. This hormone, neuropeptide Y, also seems to stumulate the growth of fat cells, at least in rats. Previously, experts thought hunger signals originated only in the brain. But now that the true power of belly fat is being uncovered, researchers are working on drugs that target this region alone.

Originally printed in HEALTH magazine - September 2008 Issue.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Fat and Fit? Probably Not

Researchers at Harvard Medical School and Boston's Brigham and Women's Hospital are challenging the popular idea that you can be overweight and still be fit. A study of nearly 39,000 women showed that those who were physically active yet classified as either overweight or obese had risks for heart disease that were 54 percent and 87 percent higher, respectively, than women who were active and not overweight. Exercise, while critical for reducing heart disease risk, isn't enough. A healthy, low-calorie diet that helps control weight is essential.

Originally printed in HEALTH magazine - September 2008 Issue.