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Maple Blueberry oats while catching the sun rise.
This has been the most amazing find of my healthy new life!! Hands down, swear to god. It was one of the first few pins I actually tried out from Pinterest, and although I've tweaked the flavors and add-ins to my liking and created brand new ones for myself, that pin is what started it all.

So why all this hype about some oatmeal? Well because it saves me time and energy in the mornings when I'm hungry and don't want to do a damn thing to feed myself...cooking is tiring sometimes! On the other hand, when it's 10pm on some random night at home and I'm awake and thinking about what I'm going to eat for breakfast the next day, it's way easier for me to muster up some energy and get some food together (I honestly think I'm an insomniac sometimes). They're pretty simple to make, already pre-portioned come breakfast time, and SO convenient. These little suckers are so easy to just grab out of the fridge and run out the door with a spoon in tow (This is where I point you to the picture on the right from when my boyfriend decided he wanted to take pictures of sunrise and I NEEDED to bring food or I was going to be a very cranky girl). Yes, I said from the fridge; it's a cold oatmeal. I had never had cold oatmeal before making these, but you get used to it, especially with all the different flavor choices...you'll see what I mean, just read on.


 
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Gyoza on the left, tofu-turkey patties on the right!
I'm half Japanese and an eighth Chinese, so loving Asian foods just seems sort of obvious. One of the things I stopped eating when I decided to be healthier was gyoza (i.e. the little dumplings that have all sorts of names depending what Asian culture you're talking about). I call it gyoza, my little sister calls it mandoo, my boyfriend calls it wonton, my cousin just says dimsum, and the list goes on.

There are lots of different fillings, different preparation methods, different wrapper recipes, blah blah blah blah. Most of the times I've bought them, they've been filled with pork and veggies....I normally say no to pork these days; it has too much fat. Also, a lot of places fry them, which adds more unnecessary oil to the mix. BUT...I was at a point where I missed it so much that I decided to just try and make it myself...for the first time ever. I was amazed that they didn't actually turn out that bad, hahaha.


 
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I love a good burger just as much as the next person, but they're definitely not the healthiest things you could be eating. When I feel like having one, I like to use ground turkey breast (read my other post to find out why turkey breast, not just turkey). Oddly enough, though, I normally buy the Foster Farms ground turkey breast which has 20oz. (=1lb and 4oz), so I normally end up with a random 4oz. of turkey left over that I need to use somehow. That's where these little beauties kick in! Tofu-turkey patties!

I have a bunch of friends who would shudder at the thought of a tofu burger of any kind (>_>), but it doesn't taste bad at all! Not only does it not taste bad, but it's really easy, quick, and simple to make as well! Don't knock it til you've tried it!

Anywho, the recipe for the patties are below, but be creative and do whatever you want with them when you're done. I've eaten them like a burger, in a pita pocket, broken it down for other recipes, or just plain by itself with a side of salad; you're only limited to what you come up with, right?


 
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Let's not all end up with a belly like this guy...
Obviously, the post's title is just a joke, I don't love beef that much. A lot of people out there would love nothing more than to just heat up a grill, slap a few steaks on, and sit back with a beer...I'm not one of those people, hahaha. I should clarify that I actually like beef and the way it tastes and having a steak every once in a while sounds like an awesome idea. When I was a kid, my mom pretty much only ever bought beef or pork for our dinners, no white meats and no fish (I wouldn't even have eaten the fish at the time). If we had chicken or turkey, it was only the Oscar Mayer sandwich slices, something that someone else gave us, or something I ordered from a restaurant. Now that I'm cooking for myself and eating a lot healthier, I definitely do not eat red meats that often. When I do make the conscious decision to eat beef, I don't like when it's super fatty/marbled, and I only eat it maybe four times a year or less now (and only that often because my boyfriend enjoys having some every so often to break up all the white meats and fish). Because of the rarity of my eating it, the meal tends to be a nicer dinner to sort of celebrate the occasion of eating red meat, hahaha.


 
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You're average run of the mill yellow (corn?) tortilla chips
Yesterday I posted a recipe to make a healthier version of a spinach artichoke dip, but I realized today while I was eating some of the leftovers that I probably should have included something about the chips, oops?

Tortilla chips are something I see all over the place normally being served as part of an appetizer like chips and salsa, or chips and spinach artichoke dip, or just a basket of chips to go with your meal. Let's be real, you know chips aren't good for you. Most kinds of chips are [deep] fried to make them crispy. I know there are bags of chips at the store that say they're baked instead of fried, but don't be fooled! Turn the bag over and look at the nutritional values on that thing! Sure, it's not AS bad as the regular chips, but just because they're baked doesn't mean that all the unhealthy ingredients they used have just disappeared!
This is the point at which I realized that making chips isn't all that hard (tortilla chips, at least). Normally, all you have to do is buy your own tortillas, cut them up, and crisp them up in the oven (instead of frying them). The problem arises when you try to find a tortilla to buy and take home; there are so many different brands and different kinds, it's almost as bad as looking for a "good" bag of chips, hah. If you're still intent on buying the store bought kind instead of the make it yourself version, at least go to HealthCastle.com's chip comparer. It's a website apparently created by dietitians, and this comparing tool allows you to filter through the top 40 chips to figure out which is the "healthiest" for your needs.

 
It's almost like meatloaf is that school lunch or that dinner your mom makes that people just don't really ever want to eat. Even when I was in school, when they tried to feed us meatloaf as the entree for the day, I opted to eat a sandwich instead, hahaha. Now that I'm older, I realize that meatloaf isn't that bad tasting, but it's definitely not always that healthy either. Most meatloaves are made with ground beef and bread or croutons, and then it's topped with a ketchup based glaze or some similar concoction that may or may not include honey, BBQ sauce, sugar, etc. I disapprove, on many fronts. Ground beef: not the best choice. Bread and croutons need some analyzing. Ketchup is a no-no, and so are most of the things they put in those glazes.

My boyfriend's fridge is always a weird mish-mash of random goods and barely any vegetables. That being said, I normally have to find creative ways to make dinner something healthy and palatable. This is where the idea for turkey meatloaf (a.k.a. turkeyloaf) came from. I figured, as far as I knew, you could pretty much throw anything into a meatloaf, call it a meal, and still have it come out tasting alright, hahaha. And so my 7-Ingredient Turkeyloaf was born.

 
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I know that food aficionados would tell me that fresh fish is always better than frozen, but come on! Seriously? Fresh, not previously frozen fish are expensive, I definitely don't eat it everyday, and even if I did, I'm not about to make a trip to the grocery store every few days to buy more. SO....my freezer always has frozen fish stored away, and why not? Fish have been found to be a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. It's a good kind of fatty acid our bodies can't produce on it's own, so we need to ingest it from a marine or plant source. Granted, not all fish are raised equal.

Different fish have different levels of omega-3 in them, but you always want to pick a fish that is wild caught and NOT FARMED RAISED (if you can)!! Farmed fish, aside from sometimes deplorable living/growth conditions, can be raised using food sources that aren't healthy for us humans. Some farms feed their fish pellets made of other smaller fish and plants that have been collected from polluted waters, meaning that those contaminants can end up in the fish that you eat. In addition to that, since one sick fish could endanger a large group in an enclosed space, fish farmers like to administer antibiotics. That's just more unnatural chemicals added to your diet if you're not careful. Sure there are other pros and cons in the wild vs. farmed fish debate, but if you can, spend the little extra that wild fish will cost you. I think it's worth the price, especially if you aren't eating it ALL the time.