Tag Archives: holidays

Candy-Free Valentine’s Day Treats Kids Will Fall in Love With

If you’re a parent, Valentine’s Day means your kid will be offered a tremendous amount of sugar right before he’s sent home from school. Valentine’s parties are tough. You want to send a great treat, but if you’re like me, you have a conscience and you can’t send sugar bombs to kids, it’s just not right.

Never fear, just because you choose not to send unhealthy treats to school, doesn’t mean you can’t be the star of the class party. I’ve had to get creative over the years, but I’ve seen first hand that most kids actually like a unique party favor or a savory healthy snack. Many choose it over the heap of candy being loaded into their Valentine mailbox.

Here are several candy-free ideas to keep you and your kid on track this Valentine’s Day.

Fruit and Veggie Trays. Yeah, it doesn’t sound that amazing, but kids actually like most fruits and vegetables, they’re just not offered very often. I’ve watched a herd of third graders make quick work of a fruit tray and my heart smiled. If you want to add some extra holiday fun, try making your fruit heart shaped. Strawberries can easily be sliced into heart-shaped medallions or melons can be formed into the heart shape as well.

Kind Bars. Have you tried these yet?! You’re going to have a hard time sending them to school because they’re just that good. The KIND bars are mostly nut based and often have dried fruit with them. They are low in sugar and full of natural healthy ingredients. The best part is that kids will probably think they’re candy bars. Check out our KIND Bars giveaway now and win a case of 20! (more…)

Hasselback Apple Crisp from the 2012 DietsInReview Holiday Card

We are off today celebrating the Christmas holiday with our families and friends. If you’re stopping by DietsInReview today, we want to say welcome and thank you! Each of the millions of people who visit us each month have made our fifth year an exciting one, not to mention a successful one. We appreciate you and hope you’ll drop by often in 2013, too!

While we’re kicking up our feet and enjoying a little downtime, we wanted to share our 2012 holiday card with you! It’s not just any card with well wishes for the season and new year, it comes with a pretty fantastic treat that we dreamed up. Flip the card over (or in this case, keep reading) and you’ll find one of our most unique recipe creations ever … the Hasselback Apple Crisp!

We figured the potato couldn’t be having all the fun with this trendy slicing method and applied it to our favorite fall fruit – the apple. Use any apple you like, we prefer Honeycrisp and Granny Smith. (more…)

6 Christmas Morning Breakfasts You Still Have Time to Make

With Christmas Eve finally upon us, everyone is checking those lists one more time to make sure nothing is forgotten. While we tend to focus on making sure the gift lists are marked complete, the grocery list can get overlooked. Make sure you’ve got a big festive breakfast planned for tomorrow morning. As your little ones stumble upon their prizes from Santa, the big kids can go ahead and settle in to a home-cooked breakfast that’s just special enough to enjoy one morning a year.

We’ve got six healthier breakfast ideas that we promise you’ve still got time to make (even on Christmas Eve!).

Baked Double Chocolate Peppermint Donuts

You won’t find any added processed sugar in these little gems. Instead we sweeten with honey, quality cocoa, and just enough crushed peppermint sticks to brighten your morning. A few mini chocolate chips baked in the pan with the batter create an instant glaze. All you have to do is serve! (more…)

Santa’s Helper Has Last Minute Stocking Stuffer Ideas

The big jolly guy might check those lists twice, but it doesn’t mean he’s any less likely to forget something than the rest of us. If you’re scrambling to do your last-minute shopping this weekend and still need a few ideas to stuff those stockings, then we’ve got you covered.


BIG KIDS

They’re never really too old to believe … or at least to get a few new surprises. Teens, college students, and maybe even mom and dad would love to find any of these goodies on Christmas morning.

Unreal Candy Bars. Even we think it’s a shame not to put a little chocolate in a stocking, but with Unreal’s “unjunked” candy bars we don’t have to feel bad about it. Available nationally at Target, Walgreens, and in health food stores.

ToeSox. For a teen or college yogi, these socks will be very well received. A lot more than a pack of gym socks! The grip on the soles allows you more stability while practicing your favorite poses even when you don’t have a mat. (more…)

5 Healthier Lunch Spots for Holiday Shopping Weekends

Are you still finishing your holiday shopping list? If so, you probably plan on hitting the mall and boutiques this weekend. There’s something fun about shopping, solo or with family and friends, that can really put you in the spirit. And all that rushing around can really make you work up an appetite that leaves you ready for lunch! You’ll be out and about and likely inconveniently far from your own kitchen, plus it’s just fun to grab a weekend lunch with your girls once in a while. So we’ve made lunch plans for you, or least found a few places where you won’t wreck your diet while you’re out putting dents in your wallet.

There are plenty of great healthy options at some of the largest chain restaurants, likely those placed just near the shopping centers where you’ll be this weekend. These locations are easy to find in most cities and have some great items to help you stay on track. Let us be your menu guide!

Chipotle Mexican Grill

Chipotle is easily a very healthy option. The meats are all very fresh, grilled, and most are organic and hormone free. One could get a bowl loaded with lean meat, brown rice, fresh peppers and onions, and pico for around 400 calories and be completely satisfied. A fully loaded steak burrito with cheese, sour cream, and guacamole is more than 1200 calories! Order wise and enjoy the good deed you’re doing for you body. And at 400 calories, you can probably splurge for a little cup of guacamole, too! (more…)

Beat the Holiday Bloat with 3 Yoga Poses

Pass the mashed potatoes, pass the gravy, and pass the Yorkshire pudding, but don’t be surprised about what else you’ll be passing.

Your holiday indulgences can be a challenge to your digestive system. If Mylanta, Beano, or any other so-called gas and bloat-relieving brands are treatments you’d rather avoid, try the following yoga poses to help ease your discomfort.

Wind Relieving Pose

With a name like this, I’ll bet you can guess what this pose is intended to do. If you are in need of a little gas passing, try practicing this pose. Most importantly, make sure you are ready and prepared for the relief it will bring.

Lie on your back with both legs extended onto the floor. Bring your right knee toward your chest and wrap both hands around your right shin. Next, lift your upper body toward your thigh. Press your belly into your thigh as you breathe. Take up to five deep breaths before switching sides. (more…)

Maintaining a Yoga Practice Through the Holidays to Prevent Bad Habits in the New Year

The last few months of the year are challenging for many reasons. From Thanksgiving Day to January 1st, many will fall victim to the greater pull of holiday pleasures and ditch their exercise routines and healthy diets.

It isn’t a crime to be a little lenient during the holidays. After all, what other time of year gives us this opportunity to eat and drink with such enthusiasm? The problem arises when seemingly temporary indulgences turn into permanent bad habits.

We all know that the best way to break a habit is to not start one in the first place. That’s why maintaining a consistent yoga practice can help. The following are a few suggestions to keep you motivated to hit the mat before your holiday hedonisms become your New Year lifestyle.

Seek instant gratification the healthy way

Needing something to knock the edge off your holiday stress? Instead of reaching for the eggnog, try taking a 5-minute break to sit, stretch, and breathe on your yoga mat. I guarantee it will bring you more gratification, give you more energy, and not to mention, reduce your daily intake of calories. (more…)

10 Healthy Cookie Recipes for Your Cookie Exchange Party

‘Tis the season for exchanging cookies! Around the holiday season cookie exchange parties have become an exciting tradition. Each person takes one cookie from another person’s cookie tray, and the idea is to walk out with a variety of delicious treats. The only downside is they aren’t usually too good for us. Cookies can be packed in calories, fat, and sugar and certainly a culprit in the holiday weight gain game.

We love a good cookie and a good cookie exchange too, so we hope you’ll share some of these healthier cookie recipes that we’ve found. Ingredients like whole grain flour, dried fruits, applesauce, fresh vegetables, and even chocolate make for some pretty splendid desserts!

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

Our healthy chocolate cookie is not only tasty but vegan friendly, too. The recipe calls for bananas, maple syrup, and dark chocolate. There is no butter and barely any added sugar. Also, the Vegan Chocolate Cookies taste delicious with a tiny scoop of light vanilla ice cream! (more…)

Treat Yourself to a Frozen Hot Chocolate This Warm Winter Season

Where I live, it was 71 degrees while I raked the leaves out of my yard yesterday, and last week I comfortably wore flip flops. All of this warm weather is backed up by a new report from the National Climatic Data Center that says 2012 will go down as the hottest year on record. It’s hard to believe Christmas is less than four weeks away when we’ve yet to pull out our winter coats!

While any other winter we’d be stirring up hot chocolate by now to stay warm and cozy, this year we need something to keep us cool. That’s right, we’re making Frozen Hot Chocolate and think you should, too!

It’s still creamy, chocolatey, and topped with marshmallows, but it’s blended with ice and sipped with a straw instead. Our Frozen Hot Chocolate was inspired by the original at New York’s Serendipity. As delightful an experience as that candy shop trip can be, their version has 340 calories. Ours, however, makes 140 calories sound pretty indulgent! (more…)

The Ultimate Zumba Gift Guide

If you’ve got a Zumba fanatic on your holiday shopping list this year, look no further. We’ve gathered a list of goods that every Zumba lover out there would be ecstatic to receive.

Exhilarate Body Shaping System (DVD set of 5)

These at-home workout DVDs will get their body dancing into shape. The original set contained only four DVDs, but this bonus set includes a fifth (20 minute warm up) plus a set of toning sticks. Each DVD contains a different workout with multiple intensity levels for the beginners, intermediates, and advanced. Also included is a 10-day weight-loss program for the Zumba lover to take advantage of. What a deal!

(more…)