Skinny Chef: Eat these six foods

If the warmer weather is starting to motivate you to eat right and start your mission to slim-down-for-spring, jumpstart your efforts by swapping out unhealthy foods with healthier choices. Do you really even like that iceberg lettuce salad? Of course not! So, swap out lackluster ingredients that are paltry on nutrients and boost your meals with flavorful, nutritious eats. Jennifer Iserloh, author of Secrets of a Skinny Chef and nutrition expert for LIVESTRONG.com recommends filling your plate with the following six foods to help you reach your spring weight loss goals.
If the warmer weather is starting to motivate you to eat right and start your mission to slim-down-for-spring, jumpstart your efforts by swapping out unhealthy foods with healthier choices. Do you really even like that iceberg lettuce salad? Of course not! So, swap out lackluster ingredients that are paltry on nutrients and boost your meals with flavorful, nutritious eats. Jennifer Iserloh, author of Secrets of a Skinny Chef and nutrition expert for LIVESTRONG.com recommends filling your plate with the following six foods to help you reach your spring weight loss goals.

Meet Jennifer Iserloh

Jennifer Iserloh, CEO of Skinny Chef Culinary Ventures, is a trained chef, author, and nationally recognized expert in healthy cooking. She has created thousands of delicious recipes for TV, print and web publications including The Today Show, SELF, and AOL Kitchen Daily. Her cookbook Secrets of a Skinny Chef features 100 decadent but healthy recipes that let you indulge your comfort-food cravings guilt-free. She is also a nutrition expert on LIVESTRONG’s Advisory Board.

Eat these 6 foods

Cabbage

Iserloh says, “Not only is cabbage extremely good for you, but it’s also one of those foods that fill you up with hardly any calories.” A generous 1-cup serving of cabbage has only 17 calories but will give you almost half of your vitamin C needs and 2 grams of fiber, about 7% of what you need in a day. High fiber foods also help to keep you full longer as they take much longer to digest. “My pic is Napa cabbage since its tender leaves cook quickly. I suggest making a brown rice stir-fry and adding 2 cups of cabbage to increase portion size with hardly any calories. You can also make a hearty weight loss soup by cooking 1 small Napa cabbage with a chopped onion in some olive oil, and adding your favorite low sodium tomato soup or canned tomatoes,” the Skinny Chef adds.

>>Stir-fry Cabbage with Mustard and Chives 

Kale

Another leafy green to dig your fork into is kale, which is related to cabbage, and power-packed with vitamin A and other potent antioxidants. Saute kale with olive oil and garlic for a yummy side dish, chop into soups and stews, or bake it into chips in the oven. “Clocking in at only 34 calories, 1 cup of raw chopped kale can be made into low-cal kale chips that sooth my craving for carb rich salty snacks at night,” says Iserloh.

>>4 healthy green veggies you should be eating 

Artichokes

“Artichokes are a fiber all-star, and extremely versatile,” says Iserloh. “Instead of going for that second slice of pizza, add artichoke hearts to your first slice for a bigger portion that will fill you up more.” She also suggests adding them to salads, putting them on your sandwich in place of tomato, or bake them with a teaspoon of feta cheese for a low-carb snack. A 1-cup serving of artichokes has a whopping 8 grams of fiber, and only 76 calories. Iserloh recommends frozen artichokes instead of canned because they are lighter in sodium.

>>Farro Salad with Artichoke Hearts and Walnuts 

Kiwi

According to Iserloh, kiwi is a naturally high fiber fruit that is an explosion of vitamin C with only 45 calories.  “Vitamin C can be your skin’s best friend during the sunnier months since it helps your skin guard against permanent sun damage and wrinkles,” she explains. “Eating lots of low-cal veggies and fruit are not only slimming but getting a good load of vitamin C can also help your body purge itself of everyday toxins that we get from air and chemical pollution, meaning cleaner skin and more energy.”

>>3 More must-eat green fruits 

Mesclun Greens

Don’t you love that colorful array of salad greens you get when dining out? Don’t just enjoy this healthy salad medley at restaurants. “It’s a great salad base that is usually sold prewashed for a fast summer meal,” Iserloh says. “One cup is only 10 calories…and usually includes dark red greens, red cabbage, dandelion, and other baby greens that are bursting with nutrients like vitamin A. Your body needs vitamin A to repair skin tissue, another get-your-glow reason to eat your greens.”

>>Dozens of vegan salad recipes! 

Grapefruit

“Fresh grapefruit is a sweet tart fruit that is the perfect refresher at the beach or pool side and high in potassium, a mineral that is responsible for the water balance in your body,” states Iserloh. “It also happens to be high in water content so you get the best of both worlds. Grapefruit juice is also lower in calories compared to orange juice and 1/2 cup of grapefruit juice mixed with sparkling water makes a delightful summer drink for only 45 calories.”

>>Broiled Grapefruit 

More vegan diet tips!

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