The SparkPeople Blog

Stepfanie Romine

Stepfanie Romine is a writer, recipe developer, published author and certified yoga teacher who has lived--and cooked--on three continents. She currently calls Asheville, North Carolina home.


Read More of Stepfanie's Blogs:

9 Surprising Foods With More Sugar Than a Krispy Kreme

A round-up of the most interesting and thought-provoking stories of the week.

9 Surprising Foods With More Sugar Than a Krispy Kreme Doughnut Mother Jones
You know that added sugar lurks in unsuspecting places. But you'll never believe which foods have more sugar than a doughnut!  

5 Secrets From the Pros to a Stress-Free Life Huffington Post Healthy Living
Find out how mind-body experts stay stress free and in the moment.

Do You REALLY Need to Shower Post-Workout? Women's Health
Kinda gross, yes, but we've all asked ourselves this question post-workout, haven't we? So… do we?

Healthy Tips for Night Shift Workers U.S. News Health
Not a 9-to-5 worker? Here's how to stay healthy if you go to work when the rest of the world is going to bed.  

Posted 2/15/2014  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 5 comments   10,091 views

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Did 'The Biggest Loser' Winner Drop Too Much Weight?

A round-up of the most interesting and thought-provoking stories of the week.

Eating too much added sugar may be killing you
USA Today
According to a new study--the largest ever of its kind--eating added sugar exponentially increases your risks of cardiovascular disease. Could your sweet tooth kill you some day?

Did this ‘Biggest Loser’ contestant lose too much weight? Washington Post
The biggest story of the week is whether the winner of the popular weight-loss TV show has gone too far. Winning contestant Rachel now weighs 105 pounds and is considered underweight. Is she too skinny? Does it matter? Should the show set limits for contestants' weight loss?

Do You Have Caffeine Use Disorder? Women's Health
Coffee lovers, perk up: New research shows that a lot of us might be overly caffeinated. But what does that mean? And do we have to swap our full-caf to decaf?

Posted 2/8/2014  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 0 comments   5,851 views

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31 Healthy Cooking Tips You Need to Know

A round-up of the most interesting and thought-provoking stories of the week.

Caramel color: The health risk that may be in your soda Consumer Reports
Set down your soda and read this: The most common coloring in foods is a potential carcinogen. Is it in your favorite drink--and does it matter?  

Exercise to Age Well, Whatever Your Age NYT
Think it's too late to start exercising? Think again! A new study found that even after years of a sedentary lifestyle, middle-age adults can benefit from exercise. So get up and get moving!

Watch and Burn: The Best Workout DVDs and Games of 2014 Fitness magazine
Looking for a few good workout DVDs? Fitness magazine reviews the best new ones. Whether you want yoga or HIIT, you're a beginner or a pro, you'll find one for you.  

How to Tell If You're Over-Exfoliating This Winter, Plus Tips on How to Keep Skin Smooth Self
This time of year, our skin is not always in tip-top shape. Learn how to keep it smooth--without over-exfoliating it.

31 Healthy Cooking Tips You Need to Know Fit Sugar
Whether you're new to cooking entirely or just you're starting to learn how to make your favorite recipes healthier, you'll learn a lot from this roundup of healthy cooking tips.

Posted 2/1/2014  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 2 comments   7,166 views

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How the Polar Vortex Might Help You Lose Weight

A round-up of the most interesting and thought-provoking stories of the week.

How A Little Chill In The Air Could Help You Lose Weight NPR Shots blog
There might be a silver lining to this "polar vortex" after all: Experts say that keeping our environments slightly colder can actually help us lose weight. (As a contributing factor when combined with plenty of exercise and healthy eats, of course!)

Media Focus on Obesity May Backfire for Some Women U.S. News Health
According to a new study, women who are overweight were less likely to be able to control their eating after reading stories that portrayed overweight people in a negative way.

Google's Contact Lens and Other News You Need to Know Mashable
Watch how Google is developing a contact lens that might someday be able to help fight diabetes.

Posted 1/25/2014  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 4 comments   6,374 views

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8 Ingredients for the Perfect Super Bowl Party

Hosting the Super Bowl bash this year? Beyond wings, beer, and plenty of chips and dip, there are a few more things you'll need to ensure your game-day festivities don’t commit any party fouls. Keep reading for eight ingredients for the perfect Super Bowl party!

Posted 1/20/2014  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 4 comments   9,110 views

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Body Proud: 'What I Love About My Body'

A round-up of the most interesting and thought-provoking stories of the week.

Body Proud: "What I Love About My Body" Fitness magazine
Love this! Real women share what they love most about their bodies--and why.


Jillian Michaels's Top Get-Fit Tips Self
The celeb trainer shares her best tips for losing weight, shaping up, and staying that way.

Reforming a Picky Eater, Step One: Children Don’t Control the Family Meal NYT Motherlode blog
Dealing with a picky eater can be tough, but experts say the first step is to not let the kid reign supreme at the supper table.

Posted 1/18/2014  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 7 comments   5,189 views

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5 New Ways to Use Brown Rice

Brown rice is one of the most versatile whole grains; nutty yet mild in flavor, it pairs well with sweet and savory ingredients alike. While brown rice is thought of as the go-to side dish for Asian stir-fries, Tex-Mex stews and Indian curries, we found five other, more inventive ways to use our favorite whole grain.

Posted 1/17/2014  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 20 comments   18,845 views

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75 Snacks Under 200 Calories

A round-up of the most interesting and thought-provoking stories of the week.

75 Snacks Under 200 Calories Self
Snacks are an important part of a healthy eating plan, but they can also lead to calorie overload. Here are 75 that will fill you up for 200 calories or less!
 
Food Firms Trim Trillions Of Calories From Packaged Treats NPR
Since 2007, major food companies have trimmed more than 6.4 trillion calories from packaged foods as a way to combat childhood obesity.  But can it have any noticeable effect?

5 Fitness Feats that are Worth the Training Fit Bottomed Girls
The ever-positive Fit Bottomed Girls share five fitness goals that are within reach and worth setting for 2014.

How Being Heavy or Lean Shapes Our View of Exercise NYT Well blog

Posted 1/11/2014  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 3 comments   4,109 views

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The Secret Ingredient for Easy, Healthy Meals (Any Time of Day)

I love this simple ingredient and eat it several times a week.

It's easy to cook, tasty to eat, and one of the most versatile foods in the healthy cook's pantry.

In my house, the secret to getting any meal off to a better start is...

Posted 1/8/2014  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 19 comments   36,442 views

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Marie Lost 141 Lbs--Read More on HuffPo Healthy Living

Marie Dozier (FEB_SHOWERS16), a 30-year-old nurse who lost 141 pounds using SparkPeople, is featured on Huffington Post Healthy Living this week.
Not only did Marie lose the weight and keep it off, but she also beat a sugar addiction, too.

Check out her story here, and if you're also struggling with a sugar addiction, you might be interested in our four-week Tame Your Sweet Tooth Challenge.

Posted 1/5/2014  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 15,619 views

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Does a Sweatier Workout Guarantee a Better One?

A round-up of the most interesting and thought-provoking stories of the week.

Is It Good to Sweat? NYT Well blog
Most of us assume that sweating is a sign of a good workout. But is it?

24 Rules For Being A Human Being In 2014 Thought Catalog
We could all use reminders to be nicer to one another. This is a great list!

7 Natural Ways to Curb Your Appetite Fit Sugar  
Forget harmful supplements and fad diets. Control your appetite and stay on track with these natural strategies.

Celebrity Cancer Diagnosis Spurs Smokers to Try to Quit NYT
When a celebrity is diagnosed with cancer, it often encourages others to quit smoking. Find out why.

6 Moves to Resize Your Butt and Thighs Self
Your butt and thighs are some of the biggest muscles in your body. Strengthen them with a half-dozen exercises.

The Best Tool for a Deeper Self-Massage Shape
A small ball you likely have in your garage or closet right now could be the secret to releasing tension and ridding your body of knots.

Lost in the Rush: How to Enjoy Every Workout Fitness magazine
Everyone has good days and bad days when it comes to exercise. Even if you aren't your fittest or fastest every time you work up a sweat, you can learn to like ever workout. Learn how.

Joy Bauer Gives Dieting Tips In 60 Seconds TODAY
Dietician and TODAY contributor Joy Bauer begins a new series, “60-Second Skinny,” in which she provides some effective dieting tips in a slim 60 seconds.

14 Things To Stop Stressing About In 2014 Huffington Post Healthy Living  
Don't we have enough to stress about in life? Here's a list of the small stuff that isn't worth stressing over.

Which stories topped your "must-read" list this week?

Posted 1/4/2014  11:00:00 PM By: Stepfanie Romine : 2 comments   3,386 views

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'Spark Solution' on the U.S. News 'Best Diets' List

Our latest book, "The Spark Solution: A Complete Two-Week Diet Program to Fast-Track Weight Loss and Total Body Health," has made the prestigious "Best Diets" list from U.S. News & World Report.

Out of 31 diets* on the list, ours was ranked:

  • #4 Best Commercial Diet Plan
  • #6 Weight Loss Diet
  • #13 Overall Diet and Healthy Eating Diet

We also ranked favorably in the Heart Health and Diabetes categories, among others.

Here's what the panelists said:

"Follow the Spark Solution, and there’s a good chance you’ll shed pounds. The plan emphasizes a winning weight-loss combination of exercise and healthy, reduced-calorie eating."

"This plan nearly nabbed a full 4 stars for healthy eating, impressing panelists with its nutritional completeness and safety. While panelists stressed the rule-heavy plan would work best for dieters who appreciate structure, one summarized it as 'a comprehensive program that can lead to healthier eating behaviors.' "

"…high scores for the Spark Solution’s likelihood to help dieters shed pounds, and weight management is key for the ticker."

Can I get a WooHoo?

To read more about what this definitive diets list had to say about SparkPeople's book, which jump-starts weight loss and radically improves your total body health,

Posted 1/4/2014  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 19 comments   6,663 views

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SparkPeople Success Story in 'People' Half Their Size Issue!

One of the best parts of working at SparkPeople is watching people reach their goals and achieve things they never thought possible. Today, we're sharing with you the story of a woman who not only lost weight (more than 200 pounds) but also--as of this week--crossed a major goal off her "bucket list."

Tracy Meuschke (TRACY31502), a stay-at-home mom from South Bend, IN, is featured in this year's "Half Their Size" issue of People magazine. If you ever doubted whether you could lose weight and keep it off the healthy way, just look at Tracy for inspiration. We know her story is going to inspire so many people who are just starting their journey, who are where Tracy was just a few years ago.

Posted 1/3/2014  3:00:00 PM By: Stepfanie Romine : 27 comments   20,061 views

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Increase in Liver Damage is Linked to Dietary Aids

A round-up of the most interesting and thought-provoking stories of the week.

Older Women May Spend Two-Thirds of Their Day Sitting HealthDay        
No matter your age or gender, this story likely will motivate you to stand up and get moving!

Spike in Harm to Liver Is Tied to Dietary Aids NYT
A scary but true article about how dietary supplements and aids have led to irreversible liver damage for an increasing number of people of all ages.

7 Surprising Body Odor Causes Huffington Post Healthy Living
Feeling stinky? One of these surprising causes could be the reason.  

Posted 12/28/2013  12:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 0 comments   4,238 views

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FREE Cookbook: The Best Slow Cooker Recipes of 2013

Remember how we announced the best slow cooker recipe in America earlier this month? Well, now we're sharing more than 25 of the best slow cooker recipes, in a FREE, downloadable, printable cookbook!

Get the 15 slow cooker recipes that were finalists in the $10,000 Split-the-Pot Slow Cooker Recipe Contest, plus more than a dozen of our favorites from the cooks at SparkRecipes.com! We have full-color photos to accompany each recipe, and--for your tracking convenience--you can click on the title of any recipe to view it on SparkRecipes.com and add it to your SparkPeople Nutrition Tracker. (You can also click on any recipe title from the table of contents to go directly to that recipe.)

You'll get NEW recipes like:

  • Best Buffalo Chicken Chili (the winning recipe!)
  • Creamy Tri-Mushroom Soup
  • Creamy Chicken Enchilada Stew
  • Alaskan Hunter Stew

PLUS old favorites, such as:
  • Slow-Cooker Salsa Chicken
  • Slow Cooker Lasagna
  • Slow Cooker BBQ Pulled Pork Roast  

Click the image below to go to the cookbook!
What is your favorite slow cooker recipe?
 
 

Posted 12/23/2013  11:00:00 AM By: Stepfanie Romine : 7 comments   20,134 views

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