Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Last Post Before Christmas: Tips plus a Clean Recipe

I am so excited that Christmas is almost here. I get so caught up in the hustle and bustle that I can't enjoy the joyful life bustling around me. I have three little guys who would LOVE their mommy to WALK AWAY FROM THE COMPUTER! It is so hard for me because I love blogging about my love of fitness and clean eating but I know that I have an obligation to my wonderful family. Hence, this will be my last post until after Christmas. I am going to update my "Healthy You Series" that I did for New Year's last year. I am going to modify a few things and add new content. I hope you all enjoy it!!

Until then, here are a few tips and one recipe for the upcoming Christmas food onslaught : )

1. Exercise! Just because it's Thanksgiving, Christmas or New Year's does NOT mean that you take a break from working out. Actually, you should get in as much exercise as you can. I have found I feel so much better since I began working out 6 days a week no matter what. It relieves stress, burns fat, strengthens your heart and makes your physique lean and sexy! Who wouldn't want to feel lean and sexy for Christmas?

2. Plan your eating regimen for each day! Space your meals at least 2-3 hours apart. You need to keep the engine burning so full up with 5-6 small meals a day. Keep in mind, you don't want to have a traffic jam by eating too often or too far apart which will cause you to overeat.

3. Toss the elastic! Comfortable elastic-waist pants don't "warn" you that pounds are creeping on the same way that form-fitting clothes will. Stop wearing slouchy, stretchy pants and go for jeans with no forgiveness built in. If you've been enjoying too much eggnog and sugar cookies, your jeans will tell you.

4. Keep your goals in mind! Determine that you will be in shape this holiday season so you don't have to work extra hard to get ready for bathing suit season. Visualize yourself in the future as being sleek and fit, not fat and frumpy. Success will be yours!

5. Take your vitamins! Vitamins help ward off exhaustion and keep emotions in check. Most overeating is associated with emotions, usually those associated with depression. Supplementing your daily diet with vitamin B encourages the burning of stored carbohydrates as energy. the more energy you burn, the more calories you burn. Also make sure you get enough vitamin D which helps maintain bone density, healthy bone growth and helps maintain the normal functioning of the nervous system. It is crucially important in aiding the body’s absorption of calcium. Without sufficient vitamin D, calcium supplements are almost useless.

6. Fill up on fruits and veggies! I know this sounds easy but during the holidays many of us forget this simple clean eating rule. You can eat almost an unlimited quantity of fruits and veggies and they will fill you up leaving less chance that you will overeat fatty or high-carb foods. Choose richly colored fruits and veggies because they contain more vitamins and disease-fighting nutrients. Try to get 10 servings in a day!

7. Most important, enjoy this season of the year! Surround yourself with friends and family and remember that the pile of cookies and candy are NOT what this season is about : )

And now for the recipe:

Moroccon Turkey Meatballs with Spiced Tomato Sauce

I made this for my husband and boys the other night and they really liked it! I think the different flavors were fun and made there mouths happy : ) I hope you enjoy it as well. I got this from my Clean Eating December Newsletter. If you subscribe to the magazine you can get the recipes in your inbox too : )

Serves: 8
Makes: 48, 1-tbsp meatballs
Hands-on time: 45 minutes
Total time: 1 hour, 15 minutes



• 1 tbsp olive oil
• 1 medium white onion, finely diced
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• 2 tsp cumin, ground
• 1/4 tsp cinnamon, ground
• 1/4 tsp ginger, ground
• 3 cups low-sodium chicken stock
• 4 medium plum tomatoes, diced
• 2 tbsp jarred tomato paste
• 1 lemon, zested (about 1 tbsp)
• 1/2 cup cilantro sprigs, finely chopped
• Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste


• 1 medium white onion, peeled
• 2 lbs lean ground turkey
• 3 cloves garlic, minced
• 1/2 cup cilantro sprigs, finely chopped
• 1 tsp cumin, ground
• 1 tsp paprika
• 1/4 tsp cinnamon, ground
• 1/4 tsp ginger, ground
• 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
• Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste


1. Prepare sauce: Heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add oil, onion and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 3 to 5 minutes or until onion is translucent. Add cumin, cinnamon and ginger and continue to cook, stirring continuously for about 1 to 2 minutes or until fragrant. Add stock, tomatoes, tomato paste and zest to pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

2. Prepare meatballs: Preheat oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

3. Using a cheese grater, finely grate onion into a large mixing bowl. Strain and discard all excess liquid from onion and place grated onion back into bowl. Add remaining meatball ingredients to bowl and mix well until combined. If mixture is very soft, cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour to allow mixture to firm up.

4. Using a tablespoon or small ice-cream scooper, scoop out 1 tbsp of mixture and roll it into a ball. Separate meatballs 1 inch apart on baking sheet and bake for 6 minutes, or until lightly browned on outside. Remove from oven. Repeat until all mixture is used up.

5. Stir cooked meatballs into sauce, increase heat to medium-high and bring sauce to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in cilantro and season with salt and pepper.

TIP: For a complex, high-fiber carb to keep your energy levels up even longer, pair your meatballs with a side of couscous. Or serve with a side of green beans to get your daily veggie fix!

NUTRIENTS per serving (6 meatballs and 1/3 cup sauce):
TOTAL FAT: 3.5 g
SAT. FAT: 0 g
CARBS: 8 g
FIBER: 2 g
SODIUM: 170 mg

By Joanne Lusted

Click HERE for a printable version.

I pray you all have a wonderful Christmas! I appreciate all of you, my loyal readers! You make what I do worth it : D



Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) said...

Oh the cabbage coconut slaw looks like a winner winner for sure!

And the tips...nice :)

Thanks for the props about me in a bikini. Yeah, kinda weird but hey. And about the G. Post. NO WORRIES. As I mentioned in that email, i have more than enough and you should be with your amazing family and not stressing over your shopping lists :) or G Posts :)

love ya girl!

Lizzie M. said...

Great tips and love recipe! Have fun with your family!!!

shannonmarie said...

My kids pull me away from the computer, too, but I'm not complaining. I just plan ahead for those moments with a couple extra posts done in advance (I've got 2 or 3 more before Christmas, but nothing prepared after that).

Great tips. I've been following those for years. I've never skipped a holiday workout and I keep my eating in check.

Merry Christmas!

danucf said...

I suggest some coriander for you balls. You will get high praise...

Leslie said...

Great tips! I love your new photo...beautiful


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