About: Almond Milk!

almond milk 1One question I get asked all the time is “if I drink almond milk?” The answer is YES! Most of the time I prefer drinking almond milk just because of it’s overall nutritional value! It’s something I consider to be a really Healthy Switch. Almond Milk is high in a number of vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin E, magnesium, calcium, iron, among others, while at the same time being low on calories! A cup of almond milk contains about 40 calories, only 3 grams of (healthy) fats (vs 8 grams in regular milk), and about 3 grams of carbs. Until Recently, I had NOT found almond milk at the supermarkets. I had found Almond DRINKS, which when looking at the nutritional value, you could almond milk 4easily see that each cup, though it was only about 50 calories, it had almost 10 grams of carbs/sugars! This is NOT a healthier option than regular milk….You want the nutritional info to look like that in the picture! So if, you are in Greece, look out for this brand of Almond Milk. When you check the Nutritional Info in the back you will see that it is low calorie, low carb and low fat…in other words, Almond Milk! If you prefer to make your own at some, it is super easy! Just Click here!

xoxo, Yoggi B.

Traditional Mashed Potatoes

Mashed Potatoes 1Ingredients

  • 3 Medium Size Potatoes (about 700 grams)
  • 50 grams of Butter
  • Heavy Cream or Full Fat Milk
  • Chives to Taste
  • Salt, Pepper and Nutmeg (or any other spices you might want)

I have mentioned before that since me and my bf have different tastes in food (I love healthy veggies, he does not), so I a healthy compromise for Dinner time for us, is making the same protein for both, but different side dishes. In this case, while he will have this traditional Mashed Potatoes as a side, I will have my Healthy Cauliflower Puree as a side.

Here’s how I make the traditional Full Fat Mashed Potatoes:

  • Mashed PotatoesPeal the potatoes and place them in a pot filled with water over high heat in the stove. Allow for the water to boil and the potatoes to become very, very soft. I generally think that when making mashed potatoes, there is no such a thing as “over-cooking” the potatoes, the softer they are, the easier to mash!
  • Once the potatoes are ready, rinse out the water and place them back in the pot.
  • Using an immersion blender, puree your potatoes; I actually don’t have an immersion blender so I do it manually, with a hand tool for mashing potatoes.
  • Place the mashed potatoes over medium to low heat and add the butter, the chives, salt and spices.
  • Keep mashing and mixing the potatoes, either with the immersion blender or a wooden spoon.
  • If you find the mixture to be too thick, add a tablespoon of milk or cream until you reach the desired consistency.
  • Top with more chives for decoration and it’s ready!

Enjoy!

xoxo,

Yoggi B. 

Healthy Green Veggies Cream Soup!

green veggies cream soup 3Ingredients

  • 2 Large Zucchini
  • 2 Stalks of Celery
  • 1 head of Broccoli (about 1 1/2 cups of  Broccoli Florets)
  • 1 tablespoon of Olive Oil
  • 3 Cups of Chicken or Vegetable Stock
  • 2 tablespoon of Pine Nuts
  • Salt, Pepper and Spices to Taste.

 

I’ve been trying to eat more veggies in my daily intake lately and I am also feeling a bit “flu-ish” this week, so making this Cream Soup was liking killing two birds with one stone for me!

This is a SUPER healthy Lunch or Side-Dish idea! It’s filled with green veggies, thus nutrients and healthy fibers! And Don’t let the name fool you; I call it a “Cream” because the final texture is just like that of vegetable creams, but the preparation is that of a clean, low fat soup! The best of two worlds, in my opinion! All the taste and texture of a fat-filled cream but with none of the calories, since this cream soup is not made with any dairy, only healthy ingredients!

Here’s how I made it:

  • Clean and Cut the vegetables: slice the celery, dice the zucchini and cut off the florets from the broccoli bunch, mine was a relatively small one so it yielded to about a cup and a half of Broccoli Florets.
  • In a large pot and over medium to high heat add 1 tablespoon of Olive oil and sautee the vegetables. Feel free to add onions or garlic at in this stage of the process if you’d like, I have a food intolerance to them so I choose not to add them in my food.
  •  Add the Chicken or Vegetable Stock. If you have the time to make it at home, that’s awesome! I didn’t have any so I used Low-Fat Maggi Chicken Stock bought from the store; the nutritional info said it only had about 15 calories and a couple grams of fat, so I consider this healthy enough and I use it. Makes my life a lot easier than having to make my own stock!
  • Bring the stock and veggies to a boil, then cover and lower temperature to medium-low so that the soup is just simmering and allow to cook for 15-20 minutes, until the vegetables are soft and tender.
  • Allow for the soup to cool a bit.
  • Add the soup to a blender, add salt and pepper as well as any other spices you might want to taste (I added a half a tea spoon of cumin for example), add 1 tbs of Pine Nuts, and Blend for 2 minutes or until creamy and smooth. My blender is not big enough to fit all the soup at once, so I blended it in two badges.
  • Place the cream back in the pot and place over medium-low heat to simmer for another 15 mins. Decorate with Pine Nuts when serving!

Green Veggies Cream SoupThis delicious cream soup recipe serves 2 and it only has about 150 calories per serving!

Creams and soups like this one, low fat and totally healthy, are excellent for weight loss! They act as “fillers”: high volume, so you fill fuller, but low calories and with great nutritional value! I try to make cream soups as often as I can and the great thing is that I can freeze them and have them ready for any occasion!!

xoxo,

Yoggi B.

 

My Home Workouts!!

yoggi profileHey, Hey, Hey!!!

So, you all know that last weekend was filled with decadent DELICIOUS treats I made for my BF’s bday!! I did try as much as possible to not over eat anything…I mean, there will be other parties and I will make these treats again, so I tried to be cool about the whole thing….But if you’re trying to loose weight or loose fat or whatever your fitness goal is, you surely know that a big “food splurge” needs to be balanced with clean eating and hard workouts!!!

Well that was my week and will continue to be this week!! So, for last week, I knew I had to balance the weekend “splurge” with a few days of real Clean Eating: loads of lean proteins, loads of fruits & veggies and few complex carbs! fitness post strawberriesBasically, this week I ate a lot of boiled chicken made into healthy “sandwiches” like I did in my recipe for My Way of making Chicken Sandwich, just grilled chicken with a side of hummus, lean minced meat and turkey meat made into Zucchini Boats, Stuffed Cabbage Rolls, boiled eggs, healthy sweets and snacks such as a piece of Oatmeal Brownie or Fruits Covered in fat-free, sugar-free toppings such as my Chocolate Covered Strawberries or My Healthy Choco-Peanut Butter Banana, and to finish this “balancing act”, I started my mornings with a nice bright Breakfast smoothie, and I choose a lot of diuretic foods for my smoothies to help me get rid of the excess water!! My favorite breakfast drink this week was definitely the Pink Smoothie!

chicken sandwich - galleryThis is why I post so many recipes in the blog!! I believe it takes a LOT more effort to come up with healthy but delicious foods you can eat guilt-free and that are natural too!!! I have not and would not want to start taking all these pills, powders, supplements and chemicals most people take so randomly! I am worried for how those chemicals could affect my body and my metabolism and what happens when you stop taking them?? Anyways, my point is I need way more inspiration to come up with healthy recipes than to come up with a bad ass workout routine that only takes up 1 or 2 hours of the day! Nevertheless, this week I did train like a BEAST!!

workoutI am a bit of a “Crazy Person” in this sense! I mean, I LOVE a workout that I am just dripping in sweat at the end of it!! But at the same time I don’t like going to the gym and I cannot DEAL with Boring workouts! I admire people who can go to the gym for 2-3 hours and lift weights….IT LOOKS SO BORING TO ME!! I know it has countless benefits but I simply am not one of those people! I like Wilson Kipsang’s mentality a lot better; Wilson has set the current world record for running a Marathon, he is from Kenya and in one of his interviews I remember him hearing say that he finishes marathons in about 2 hours because he wouldn’t be able to withstand running for 4 hours like the majority of people do, specially not in the Kenyan weather! The result being less time but more intensity….that’s what I try to do too!!

zumba 4My sport isn’t running…I do run for fun sometimes with my dog, but what I truly LOVE is a Zumba Fitness workout!!! I had been doing this workouts through the Wii games Zumba Fitness sells, but they only come out once a year and since I’ve been doing that for over 3 years, well I needed to step it up a bit, and so about a month ago I became a Certified Zumba Fitness Instructor and now I am making my own choreographies to workout to! Because I love dancing so much most times I will start listening to a song and do a few steps and then I get really into it and next thing I know over 2 hours have passed and I am dripping in sweat after repeating my song choreographies over and over!!

This is the type of workouts you can expect from me, high intensity and routines that push My limits!

zumba 3I will be posting a lot of the choreographies I’m putting together soon!! In fact, my close friend who is helping me make the videos, told me that she, who has never done a Zumba Fitness class in her LIFE, decided to just give it a shot at doing my video (which for now, only she has it since she is editing it) because it looked so catchy, easy and fun! She repeated it about 5 times until she got the steps right and she called me to tell me that she was pretty sweaty and that she had so much fun she didn’t even notice she was actually working out!!! I personally believe that in our Fitness Journeys we MUST choose workouts that “soothe the soul”, this way you won’t get bored and tired of them, you zumba 2will always wanna Keep Going!!…dancing definitely does that for me! And the best part is that I don’t go to a gym for a Zumba Fitness Class I create them and do them at home!! I prefer it this way, its cheaper, its faster and I’m in control of my body and how far to the limit I want to push it. If I only have 30 mins to workout I will make a 30 min HIGH intensity workout so I get the results I want in the time I have; if I have a chilled day, I will go for medium to low intensity songs for longer; some days I will make pair songs to be a HIIT workout (High Intensity Interval Training) with high intensity songs alternated with low intensity songs.

stretchingMy point is…..to get fit you don’t need anything but yourself! It doesn’t need to be boring or far or expensive; and just because you work from home it doesn’t mean you can cheat yourself of a good workout!! I have been working out from home for over 3 years now and I am the fittest and strongest I’ve ever been in my life! And I started out with simple, easy to do, affordable solutions!!

Do you have a gym membership or have you tried working out from home?? If not, Give it a try to home workouts!! You will be surprised with how effective it can be and how little money you need to spend for it!!!

Stay tuned for more recipe ideas, workout videos and everyday fashion….if I can do it…trust me, you can do it too!!!!

home workoutsStart your week strong!!!!!

xoxo,

Yoggi B.

Pet Tips: Healthy Dog Treats


snack
Hey, Hey, Hey!!

So, today I had this mid-day snack: Green Apple slices with 1 tbs of sugar-free homemade Peanut Butter! and I generally follow the mentality of “Sharing is Caring”…specially when it comes to food!!! For me, I find it to be an excellent way to downsize my meals without even realizing of it myself!!! And of course, Sheldon is my perfect companion to share some meals….

Do not worry, I do care about my dog’s health, so I don’t always share human food with him, but I will occasionally, and I will generally try to give him human food that is also beneficial for dogs to eat!  A friend of mine, who is studying to become an odontologist, told me that the process of eating apples can actually help in keeping dogs’ teeth healthy, as well as keeping their breath fresh!! 

my snackfor shellySo, When I have a healthy green apple with peanut butter snack, I always make sure to share some of my apple with Sheldon, making sure, of course, that I do not feed him any of the seeds, I cut it into slices he can handle and that he doesn’t eat too much of it at once…

After having done a bit more of reading upon the subject, I found out that what my friend told me was in fact accurate and that apples are considered to be a healthy snack for dogs, since it provides them with different vitamins and healthy fibers! Just do not over do it, I give my dog only a couple pieces every few days or so…

So, there you have it, in case you didn’t already know about this wonderful healthy snack that you can share with your pet!! It is healthy for both!!

xoxo,

Yoggi B.

 

Oat’s Series 7: The PINK Smoothie!

pink smoothieIngredients

  • 5 Strawberries
  • ¼ cup of Pomegranate de-Seeded and Juiced
  • 1 thick slice of Pineapple Juiced
  • ½ Banana
  • 4 tbs of My Mom’s Oatmeal
  • 2 tbs of Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 2 tbs of Chia Seeds (optional)

 

Another smoothie for “Drinking the Rainbow”!!

I love the color Pink and I love this refreshing pink, easy and fast to make smoothie, perfect for the spring weather! Though this smoothie has a lot of fruits and not any veggies, I consider it a bit of a Diuretic smoothie, since it has pomegranate, pineapples and oats. So aside from being my favorite color, this smoothie is also good for fighting against liquid retention!!!

Here’s what I did:

  • Juice the Pomegranate seeds and the pineapple.
  • Chop the strawberries and bananas and place in blender.
  • Add the juiced fruits, greek yogurt to the blender and Oatmeal.
  • Blend until smooth and add the chia seeds, if using.

Serve with ice and enjoy it!!!!

A little Tip about this smoothie:I usually have this juice when I have been through a few “decadent days”. Basically, last weekend was my bf’s bday, so I made quite a few decadent options to eat and had a lot of them. I don’t feel that I overate, since I didn’t have a “food baby” belly the next day or anything….but has it ever happened to you that you notice your fingers are a little swollen after having a decadent food??? That’s how I was feeling, which is just a sing of water retention! So I’ve had this Breakfast Smoothie for the past few days and already my fingers feel a lot better!!! The diuretic properties of its ingredients, help the body to get rid of that excess liquid I may have been carrying over due to the food choices I made this weekend. Try to Listen to your body and nourish it accordingly!!

xoxo,

Yoggi B.  

B-Day Weekend!

bday napkinsHey, Hey, Hey!

So, I’ve been M.I.A the past couple of days because it was my bf’s bday this weekend…as well as Sheldon the boo-boo’s bday, my precious bulldog turned 3 yrs old! Due to this..I spent the last couple of days just baking some of mine and my bf’s favorite treats for us and our friends to enjoy at a small get-together we had at our place.

I will be sharing a lot of these decadent recipes with your in the next few weeks! So stay tuned!!

For now, let me give you a little preview of what I baked this weekend! It may seem like a lot of food specially since it was a small gathering..about 10 people or so….but my mom always says “es mejor que sobre, a que falte..”, which roughly translates to “…its better to have too much food, than too little..”

For the sweets I made some of the few desserts my bf likes; he is quite picky with his sweets, so I made: Sweet Palmier Biscuits; Venezuelan Style “Millefeuille” with vanilla & chocolate cream; New York Style Cheesecake; and my bf’s mom was kind enough to make some of his favorite “choux”, or mini profiteroles:

Venezuelan Style Millefeuille/Mil Hojas

Choux or Mini Profiteroles

bday palmiers 2

bday cheesecake 3

 

 

 

 

 

For the salty treats, I went traditional venezuelan and made some finger-food: mini traditional Cachitos de Jamon & Queso (Ham and Cheese Crescent Rolls) and Mini Saladitos de Ricotta (something like Ricotta Cheese Pies).

bday fingerfoodbday saladitos

bday cachito 2

 

 

 

 

 

In occasions like this, in which I myself have made so many of the decadent foods I love to eat, its really easy to loose control and over eat. I definitely ate more than I wanted this weekend, but I didn’t loose control of the situation to the point of binge eating, I tried as much as possible to Balance my decadent intake. Basically what I do in parties, restaurants or even when we order, is that I try to fill up with healthier options and I apply my never-fail rule of “sharing is caring”; I share all of my foods with whomever will have it. For this particular dinner party what I did was have a light salad before the party so I wouldn’t be too hungry, and then tried to share whatever I ate during the actual party! If I ate a decadent venezuelan cachito, I shared half with my bf, I shared the cake with one of my friends, tried to only have a few bite-sized “saladitos”, and I skipped the rest for that night. I knew I would have leftovers so I figured I could have the rest another day, which I did the next day. I gave a lot of the leftovers to our friends to take home if they wanted and so there was very little left in my fridge by the next day.

 

My weekend ended with the first testings for making my song-workout videos!! As I’ve mentioned in a couple of posts, I recently became a certified Zumba Fitness Instructor and so I’ve been trying to make short videos to post in the blog with the choreographies and songs I usually work out with! This weekend we tested out different sporty outfits and looks for the first video! Here’s a little preview of the outfits I tried out for the workout video!!

look 1 timberlook 2zumba outfit

look 4look 5

 

 

 

 

 

The song I’ve been working out to lately is Pitbull’s and Kesha’s Timber!!!  I absolutely LOVE this song and the beat is perfect to break a sweat!!!

So..this was my weekend! I hope you are as excited as I am for what’s to come this next month!!

Happy start t your week!

xoxo,

Yoggi B.