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7 Tips for a Healthier Halloween

Let’s be honest, Halloween isn’t the healthiest event of the year with all of the sweets that are on display at the office, the stores, the parties and of course, your child’s trick-or-treat bag. But there are a few ideas that can help make healthy habits fun and memorable – even at Halloween!

Don’t toss your pumpkin seeds after making Jack-o-lanterns; roast them for a healthy and delicious snack! (See the Roasted Pumpkin Seeds Recipe below).

Choose hard candies that you can’t eat as quickly or a “healthier” candy options such as dark chocolate (Dark chocolate contains potent antioxidants that have anti-inflammatory properties. Look for those with 70% cocoa or higher).

To personally avoid the candy temptation, wait until October 30th to buy it or buy the types of candies you and your family don’t like!

Turn healthy fruits and vegetables into fun Halloween treats! Add almond slivers to the tops of veggie sticks to make fingers, cut apple wedges and add almond slivers for teeth, or cut hard boiled eggs in half and put a raisin or an olive piece in the middle to make an eyeball!

Feed your family a healthy dinner on Halloween night before trick of treating. A hearty, healthy, and early dinner will make everyone less hungry which means less candy is eaten that night. Serve lean protein and vegetables since loads of carbs will be consumed from the candy.

Remember, Halloween is only one day – so if you decide to indulge responsibly on some treats that night, don’t do so for the entire week following the holiday.

Is having leftover candy too much of a temptation? Considering donating it to charity or sending a Halloween care package to a soldier overseas! (
Have a healthy & Happy Halloween!

BLR Featured Recipe
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
4 Servings

Pumpkin seeds are a great source of zinc which helps to maintain a healthy immune system. These seeds also contain important nutrients that support a healthy prostate and promote joint health.

1 cup pumpkin seeds
1 Tbsp. grapeseed oil
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. cumin, curry powder, cayenne, or black pepper (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with tin foil. Remove strings from pumpkin seeds and put into a small bowl. Dry with a paper towel and mix in oil, salt and spices (optional). Put seeds on baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes (or until golden brown). Toss seeds after about 10 minutes to cook evenly.

Nutrient info per ¼ cup serving: 217 calories, 19.2g fat, 6.1g carbohydrate, 8.5g protein, 1.4g fiber, 297mg sodium

9 Foods to Beat the Bloat, Plus 9 Foods to Avoid

What you eat (or don’t) can have a huge impact on your waistline, and not just because of the calories. Learn which foods and drinks can lead to a flatter belly, and which ones make the pooch worse.



Cures Bloat: Water

Sipping water is the number one thing you can do to feel less bloated, says Keri Gans, registered dietitian and author of The Small Change Diet. People often feel bloated when they are constipated, Gans says, and water “keeps things moving.” It also helps to flush out excess bloat-inducing sodium.



Cures Bloat: Yogurt

The probiotics—or good bacteria—found in yogurt can do wonders for keeping your GI system regular, and your belly flat. These bacteria are also great for reducing the excess gas that can build up in your stomach over time.



Cures Bloat: Watermelon

Fruits and veggies with a high-water content like watermelon, pineapple, tomatoes, and cucumbers help to flush out belly-bloating sodium and relieve constipation—just like drinking a glass of water.



Cures Bloat: Berries

While all fruits and veggies contain some bloat-beating fiber, raspberries, blueberries, strawberries and whole fruits with skin, like apples and pears, offer the most. Peas and artichokes are also smart choices for an extra dose of fiber, says Gans.



Cures Bloat: Bananas

Potassium has been shown ease bloating by helping to regulate your body’s sodium levels. Gans also recommends avocados, pistachios and orange juice as potassium-rich alternatives.



Cures Bloat: Low-Sodium Vegetable Soup

Broth-based soups are filling and have a high water-content to flush your system. Look for soups chocked full of veggies for extra fiber and make sure to stay away from high-sodium canned ones



Cures Bloat: Papaya

Papaya—along with grapefruit and pineapple—contains digestive enzymes that break down protein in your GI system, making digestion easier. Registered dietician Ashley Koff recommends adding a side of these fruits to meals with animal protein, like turkey burgers.



Cures Bloat: Quinoa

Quinoa is rich in magnesium, which studies have shown can reduce bloating—especially when that bloating is PMS-related. Quinoa is also rich in bloat-beating potassium.



Cures Bloat: Salmon

Among their many other health benefits, the omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon reduce inflammation in the body and can help decrease bloating associated with GI distress.



Causes Bloat: Cocktails

Alcohol often gets blamed for causing bloating and puffiness, but what you’re putting in your alcohol could be the real problem. Avoid bubbly mixers like sodas and seltzers to prevent the air from getting trapped in your stomach. And—as strange as it might sound, says Gans—talking while drinking and drinking through a straw can also cause you to swallow excess air.



Causes Bloat: Frozen Meals

Gans says she regularly sees women in her practice eating frozen meals, often targeted at dieters, for lunch at the office and for dinner at home. While some frozen meals are low-calorie, many also contain upwards of 500 mg of sodium—almost 25 percent of your daily recommended value—causing water retention and bloating.



Causes Bloat: Gum

Chewing a stick of gum might keep you from indulging in other calorie-laden treats, but you may also be swallowing air while you chew. This air gets trapped in your GI system causing stomach expansion and pressure.



Causes Bloat: Sugar-free Candy

Sugar-free candy, some diet granola-type bars, no-sugar packaged baked goods and sugarless gum, often contain sweeteners called xylitol, sorbitol and maltitol. These chemicals can cause GI distress, including bloating and diarrhea.



Causes Bloat: Soda

Carbonation can cause bloating, so Gans suggests replacing soda with flavored water (try dropping in some lemon or lime slices) or peppermint tea.



Causes Bloat: Fried Foods

Nothing will make you feel bloated faster than a bacon-cheeseburger with a side of fries. Because greasy, fatty foods are difficult to digest, your body has to work extra hard, causing your stomach to be distended while it works.



Causes Bloat: Raw Broccoli

Some people find that cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli and cauliflower, make them gassy and bloated. Don’t avoid these veggies completely, just start slowly with half-cup servings until your body is used to them. Cooking these veggies will also make them easier to digest.



Causes Bloat: Anything in a Can

Most canned veggies and beans are packed in salty, bloat-inducing liquids to preserve their natural flavor. Rinsing canned goods under cold, running water for 30 seconds can help.



Cause Bloat: Processed Meats

Salami, bologna, and hot dogs, along with other luncheon meats, are high in hard-to-digest fat and bloat-inducing sodium. Stay away from these meats, or opt for alternatives like carved turkey for your lunchtime sandwich

9 Foods to Beat the Bloat, Plus 9 Foods to Avoid Read more: What Causes Bloating

Pick Potassium-Rich Foods

This mineral helps regulate the fluid balance in your body, keeping bloat at bay. High-potassium foods include bananas, cantaloupe, mangoes, spinach, tomatoes, nuts, and asparagus — which contains an amino acid called asparagine that (bonus!) acts as a diuretic to flush excess liquid out of your system.



Keep Your Mouth Shut

Beware of habits that cause you to swallow excess air — like chewing gum, drinking through a straw, smoking, and talking while you’re eating, Raymond says.



Cut the P.M. Carbs

Starches like bread and pasta may cause you to retain water. Lay off them before bedtime to keep from waking up puffy.



Can the Soda

The bubbles in carbonated drinks will make your belly pooch out. Stick to plain water, says Jeannie Gazzaniga-Moloo, R.D., a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.



Can the Soda

The bubbles in carbonated drinks will make your belly pooch out. Stick to plain water, says Jeannie Gazzaniga-Moloo, R.D., a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.



Prep for PMS

If you tend to swell up before (or during) your period, be sure you’re getting enough calcium (1,200 mg a day) and magnesium (200 to 400 mg daily) in your diet; both nutrients have been found to help relieve PMS symptoms such as bloating. You can also pop Midol, which contains two mild diuretics.



Apply Pressure

To help evacuate gas, says Raymond, try massaging your abdomen in the direction of your GI tract: Press your fingers near your right hip; slide up toward the ribs, across and down near your colon in a circular motion. Sounds weird — but it works!



Nibble on Parsley

Add fresh, chopped parsley — another natural diuretic — to meals.



Pop a Probiotic

These “good bacteria” (found in supplements and in cultured milk products such as yogurt) can keep you regular and bloat-free, Gazzaniga-Moloo says. In fact, women with irritable bowel syndrome — characterized by abdominal pain, bloating, constipation, and/or diarrhea — who took the probiotic strain B. infantis for four weeks noticed less bloating than those on a placebo, one study shows. Check labels for this strain (which can be found in the supplement Align), or find a similar strain in Dannon Activia yogurt.



Get Moving

Fight constipation by walking for at least 15 to 20 minutes each day to keep food moving through your digestive tract, Raymond suggests. Working up a sweat also releases fluids.



Everyday foods that you should be eating to boost metabolism

Giving your metabolism a little jump-start is not a difficult task — or even a big commitment! Take for instance, adding any of these six foods to your day. It’s such a simple way to get the body going.

Hot peppers: The compound capsaicin that gives chili peppers their kick has long been connected with boosting metabolism and curbing cravings.
Whole grains: Whole grains offer loads of dietary fiber and complex carbs that help speed up your metabolism. Just make sure to reach for real whole grains; don’t be blinded by pretty multigrain packages.
Coffee: Caffeine “naturally” stimulates your central nervous system; your daily cup of coffee can boost metabolism by five to eight percent.
Vinegar: Vinegar has a ton of health properties including the ability to burn fat. Studies indicate that it’s the acid in vinegar that signals genes in the body to break down fat. It’s especially useful to enjoy vinegar after you eat refined carbs, since it manages your blood-sugar levels from rising too quickly.
Citrus: Chowing down on citrus favorites burn fat and keep your metabolism in check. The next time you need a snack, grab a grapefruit or orange to keep insulin levels at bay.
Spices: Spices are one of the easiest foods to incorporate to keep your metabolic rate high! The most pungent spices like turmeric and cinnamon do the best job at kicking up your body’s temperature, speeding up your body’s fat burning process.

Best Methods To Jazz Up Your Diet Without Adding Colories Or Fat

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