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Nutrition

Holiday Makeover: Sweetened Butternut Squash, Apples & Cranberries

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Candied yams are a staple in many Thanksgiving menus. But they can contain so added sugar and fat that they are practically a dessert. Our alternative uses butternut squash, apples, and cranberries!

What you’ll need:
32 oz container of cubed butternut squash, preferably organic
2-3 granny smith apples, peeled and cubed
3 tbsp. of light brown sugar
2 tbsp. of Stevia or Splenda
2 tbsp. of dried cranberries
1 tbsp. of cinnamon
¼ cup of pineapple juice
1 ½ tbsp. of melted butter (optional)
Pinch of salt

Makes 11 servings

How to prepare:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place your container of cubed butternut squash in a large bowl. Peel and dice granny smith apples and add to squash. Add just a pinch of salt to bring out natural flavors, and juice from one lemon to squash and apples and gently mix together. Place mixture in a large glass baking dish, coated with non-stick spray.

Then, add pineapple juice, 2 tbsp. of brown sugar, your Stevia or Splenda, cranberries and melted butter. Add your remaining tbsp. of brown sugar on top. *Note – I forgot to add the cinnamon until cooking had already begun, which is okay, but don’t forget your cinnamon!

Bake for about 40-45 minutes. Let sit for 5-10 minutes. Enjoy!

Nutritional Analysis: 62 calories, 1g fat, 16g carbohydrate and 1g protein per serving.

Motivate your friends, family and co-workers! Use the social media links below to share with your family and friends

Lauren is the co-founder of Black Fitness Today, the digital magazine dedicated to empowering the black community - mind, body, soul, culture and money. She lives in Tucson, AZ, where she also manages the healthy food blog The Remix with Lauren, her husband and his brain that never stops churning, and their completely lit one-year-old daughter. You can reach her at lauren.bell@blackfitnesstoday.com

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Nutrition

Your Guide To Shopping For Produce

Find out what produce you should definitely buy organic, and what is okay to buy conventionally

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It seems to be getting harder and harder to know what is being sold to us at the grocery store. We know that the beautiful, shiny produce is the most affordable but probably contains the highest amounts of wax, pesticides and other chemicals. However, organic can be a bit pricey and possibly unavailable, depending on where you have access to shop.

Did you know that the USDA found a total of 178 different pesticides and pesticide breakdown products on the thousands of produce samples it analyzed? The pesticides persisted on fruits and vegetables even when they were washed and, in some cases, peeled.

See what happens when you pour hot water on conventional apples. The chemicals literally melt! It’s important that we buy organic and if we cannot, at least wash our produce prior to consuming (Video: Laurline Eldemire Lawrence via Facebook):

Check out the most recent list of produce that you should preferably buy organic, known as the ‘Dirty Dozen,’ and which produce is safe to purchase conventionally, known as the ‘Clean Fifteen.’ While you may not find every produce item you like to eat on these lists, this is a great start!

fruit, vegetables, organic

Dirty Dozen/Clean Fifteen. Credit: EWG

Read the full report here:

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Nutrition

Drink Your Way to Fat Loss

Let’s start with water and its importance to fat loss……notice I say “Fat Loss” because I view it differently than “weight loss”. Eliminate carbohydrates, fast, go on a juice diet, detox, cleanse or drink some sort of weight loss shake and inevitably you will lose weight. However, you generally will gain it back…and if you are super unlucky…plus some!

On average, I would say that prior to my lifestyle change, I was lucky to finish a bottle of water a day. I didn’t think about drinking and I consumed most of my liquids in the form of tea or coffee during the day as I was never a soda drinker.

If you want to lose FAT, here are a few reasons water is so important to your success.

1. Appetite Control – Water is an appetite suppressant which means that drinking enough of it ensures that when you do feel hungry you really need something to eat. Drinking a lot of water helps to keep hunger at bay!

2. Toxins – Water clears toxins and helps fats pass through your system before they can be stored. Water helps any substance your body doesn’t need exit safely and aids in transporting the necessary nutrients throughout your body.

3. Kidney function – The kidneys require water to carry out their duty of processing waste products efficiently. When the kidneys don’t have enough water, the liver comes to aid. Part of the liver’s responsibilities is to take your stored fat and turn it into energy you can use. Therefore, by not drinking enough water you are slowing down the speed at which the liver can do it’s work. Drink more water and let the liver turn your FAT into ENERGY!

FIT TIP-Drink 8 oz or 1 glass of water every hour at work. One 8 hour shift meets the average daily requirement of 8 glasses (64 oz) a day.

4. Hormones – As you start to cut the amount of food you are taking in as most people do when they are trying to lose weight the body senses this lack of calories. From an evolutionary perspective, whenever there was a lack of food there was also a lack of water. By consuming enough water, you tell the body there is “No Emergency” and that it is safe to let go of the fat rather than hoard it.

5. Hydrated Muscles – Muscles that are hydrated are stronger which leads to better workouts, more muscle growth and ultimately increases your metabolism. Muscles burn more calories just by their mere existence!

DRINK UP!

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Nutrition

@iamnayfit – 5 Tips to Make Your #BodyGoals A Reality and Getting Results In 28-Day Challenge

Ilen Bell, MS, CSCS, Co-Founder of Black Fitness Today

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iamnayfit

What is the #Ri28 challenge?

The 28 day challenge was made when we put together all of the elements needed to lower your body fat percentage quickly and efficiently.  The combination of reducing carb intake and increase activity on a daily basis is key to fat loss.

What can people expect over 28 days?

Clients can look forward to a no stress program. No gym membership is needed , no gym equipment is required. All you need is $39 and a device to watch the workout on.

Who is the #Ri28 challenge for?

This challenge is for anyone who wants to tighten and tone. This a great way to spice up your normal cardio routine with high intensity interval training.

Why should people join the challenge?Anyone wanting for feel better and look their best should join the #Ri28 family. 2017 is coming to an end and it’s time for bring in the new year feeling and looking  like the best version of YOU!

What are your Five Tips to Make #BodyGoals A Reality?

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