The SparkPeople Blog

10 of the Best and Worst Cereals

By: , SparkPeople Blogger
5/11/2017  10:00:00 AM   :  158 comments   :  849,408 views

At some point, you've probably heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. While some people question this recommendation, others have quick and healthy breakfast favorites they regularly include at the beginning of their day, whether it's a warm bowl of oatmeal in winter or refreshing summer choices like fruit smoothies, yogurt or cold cereal.

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4 Ways to Beat the Heat and Stay Hydrated This Summer

By: , – Elizabeth Lowry, SparkPeople Health & Fitness Writer
5/11/2017  12:00:00 AM   :  14,814 views

The season is finally warming up and transitioning to summer, and with it comes a lot of other changes: You're probably swapping out your pants for shorts, sweatshirts for tank tops and putting your coats and snow boots into storage. You might also pull the grill out of the garage, get out your lawn chairs and start stocking up on sunscreen. Most people look forward to summer's plethora of outdoor activities—but forget to change up what they eat and drink.

Follow these four hydration tips to stay energized, cool and well-hydrated during your favorite hot-weather activities.

  1. Know how much to hydrate. The Institute of Medicine at the National Academies of Sciences recommends that adults try to drink 11-16 total cups of fluids a day. This may seem like a lot, but remember, those fluids can come from a wide range of beverages, as well as foods. In fact, low- or no-calorie beverages provide some sweetness without the calories and are predominately water. If you exercise, be sure to drink before, during and after, too.

    SparkPeople member PKCHANDLER loves low- or no-calorie sweetened beverages because they are "A refreshing drink I don't have to 'count,'" and she, "Looks forward to grabbing a refreshing beverage with no added calories."

  2. Eat plenty of water-filled foods. Fruits and vegetables are packed with water and can count toward your hydration goals for the day. Fruits like watermelon, strawberries, grapefruit, pineapple and oranges are nearly 90 percent water. Cucumbers, lettuce, zucchini, cabbage and peppers are also about 90 percent water, so don't hesitate to stock up the next time you find yourself at the farmers market or a produce stand.

    Sparkpeople member CMCKENNAHOME satisfies her sweet tooth and stays hydrated with "Fruit, coffee with Stevia or diet iced tea at least once a day," she says.

  3. Don't discount low- or no-calorie beverages. Even if you drink a lot of water all day, beverages with sugar substitutes can help you stay hydrated, too. Not only are they a proven tool to help you maintain a healthy weight, they don’t leave you feeling hungrier, so they can be a beneficial part of an overall weight management plan. The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey found that people who eat a balanced diet are also likely to drink low- or no-calorie beverages. So, go ahead—it's okay if you want to reach for one.

    "[Low- or no-calorie beverages] are just enough—a splurge without a ton of guilt," Sparkpeople member FRUITSANDVEG says.

  4. Pay attention to your thirst. Even if you feel just a little thirsty, quench it by reaching for water or any other low- or no-calorie beverage of your choice if you want a little sweetness. Don't ignore your body's signals. If you don't drink when you're thirsty, you may become dehydrated.

    For more tips on staying hydrated this summer, click here.

10 Easy Side Dishes to Make That Chicken Dinner a Winner

By: , – Bryn Mooth
5/9/2017  12:00:00 PM   :  17 comments   :  1,038,138 views

When it comes to the protein portion of a healthy diet, boneless, skinless chicken is a hero. It’s versatile, easy to prepare and naturally lower in fat and calories than many other meat options. But by itself, chicken can be, well, a little boring.
If baked, grilled or roasted chicken is a regular part of your dinner rotation, you’ll need some great side dishes to add a little spark to the plate. From lentils to slaw, these 10 side dish recipes that can help breathe new life to that chicken dinner.

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5 Healthy Recipes that Aren't a Salad

By: , – Kaleigh McMordie, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Master of Nutrition
5/8/2017  12:00:00 AM   :  11,028 views

Getting ready for summer doesn't mean you have to give up delicious food for leafy greens. Eggland's Best eggs will help cut down calories, reduce saturated fat intake and add extra nutrients to your dishes. When compared to ordinary eggs, Eggland's Best have more than double the omega-3s, six times more vitamin D and 10 times more vitamin E (just to name a few benefits).

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The Ultimate Guide to High Heel Foot Health

By: , – Vionic Shoes
5/8/2017  12:00:00 AM   :  10,236 views

As a practicing podiatrist in New York City, Dr. Jackie Sutera sees her fair share of women whose feet are suffering from the effects of wearing sky-high heels. Here, she offers her tips for keeping your feet looking and feeling their best before, during and after wearing high heels.

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5 Easy Ways to Add More Protein to Your Breakfast

By: , – Kaleigh McMordie, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Master of Nutrition
5/5/2017  12:00:00 AM   :  15,684 views

As a dietitian, one of the biggest mistakes I see in my clients' daily habits is not getting protein at breakfast. A granola bar or bowl of cereal may be quick and easy, but they often don't provide enough protein to keep you full all morning.

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