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HealthBuzz October 19: Famous Vegans, Indoor Fitness for Kids, and Comforting Fall Recipes

It’s Friday and that means it time for a dose of healthy news before you head out to enjoy the weekend. This week’s headline includes a story about celebrities who are living healthier due to their vegan lifestyle. Another headline is an article about indoor fitness for kids that we shared at Nutritious America. And, don’t forget to look at the recipes we love which include a whole wheat chicken pot pie and a sparkling apple sangria recipe.

3 Free Weekly Meal Planner Worksheets Organize Healthy Homemade Food

After a long day of work the last thing you want to worry about is dinner. For those who want to get healthy and manage their grocery budget meal planning can be a big help. DIR is sharing three meal plan worksheets that you can print off for free! The worksheets can help you stick to meal plans at the store and you’ll be less likely to put a bunch of junk into your grocery cart! 

Meet Mr. Honeycrisp, the Man Behind Fall’s Most Popular (and Most Expensive) Apple

About every type of apples tastes the same, right? Wrong. Honeycrisp Apples’ taste is unmatchable compared to Granny Smith apples or Red Delicious apples. DIR’s managing editor recently interviewed David Bedford, the father of the Honeycrisp Apple. Read more about the most prestigious apple out right now!

More Vegan Celebrities Tout the Animal-Free Diet’s Benefits

Being a vegan means that you cut off any animal product from your diet, but it also changes your lifestyle. Vegans swear to not use any animals products or eat animals because it is morally wrong. Celebrities like Pink, Kristen Bell, and Travis Barker have made a healthy lifestyle change since becoming vegans.
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Pimp That Recipe: Caramel Apples for Fall

By Abra Pappa for Nutritious America

Fall is not fall without caramel apples. At least to me. Crisp tart apples and sticky sweet caramel. Yum!

As a child, October meant caramel apples. We would travel to the farmers market to pick out the perfect caramel apple for the ride home. This much-anticipated treat was homemade by the farmer’s wife, with a fresh apple picked from the tree and dipped in a simple caramel sauce, made from sugar, heavy cream and sometimes butter. Then, as Halloween neared, my mother would come home with a big bag of apples and get to work on her own caramel apples for the family.


What was once the simplest and purest treat has turned into the simplest, fastest pre-packaged (and full of scary stuff) treat. Walk down the apple aisle of any grocery store this month and you will find “caramel apple wrappers” and packaged  “old fashioned caramel dip.” Although convenience has its place in today’s hustle and bustle world, I wonder if you have ever read the ingredients in that easy-to-grab dip?
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Pimp That Recipe: The Ultimate (Healthier) Chocolate Chip Cookie

By Abra Pappa for NutritiousAmerica.com

What is more delicious than warm chocolate chip cookies fresh out of the oven? Not much I tell ya, not much. We all should have a reliable, delicious chocolate chip cookie recipe in our back pocket to wow impromptu guests and convince our kids that we are, indeed, super mom.

Trouble is most cookie recipes begin with ingredients that need..well.. pimping! I encourage you to push beyond your baking comfort zone to try this nutrient dense, crazy delicious treat. The ingredients here should easily be added to your arsenal of real food, health promoting pantry staples.

So let’s pimp that recipe!
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Kid-Approved Butternut Squash Macaroni and Cheese Launches ‘Pimp That Recipe’ Makeover Series

By Abra Pappa for Nutritious America

The idea behind most recipe makeovers is to take out or replace the “naughty” foods with “lighter” versions in order to reduce the big numbers from calories and fat. While reducing numbers is a piece of the health puzzle it doesn’t tell the whole story. Specifically since high fat/high calorie items are frequently replaced with chemically processed or highly processed “lite” versions which leaves a recipe that, quite frankly, can have a negative impact on your overall health.

This recipe makeover, however, is based on a non-reductive food philosophy; one that doesn’t just rely on taking high calorie foods OUT but focuses on adding the right foods IN. Adding in real whole foods, clean foods, foods as close to nature as possible.

So off we go with a new way of re-doing recipes. Pimp That Recipe will take your favorite comfort foods and upgrade them to a new, wholly health supportive, nourishing, satiating, and delicious version. Surely you’re on board with that!

Pimp That Recipe Mission 1: Macaroni and Cheese

I am jumping right out of the gate with a tough one. Macaroni and cheese is delicious. There, I said it. I understand why many of my clients are in love with this rich, creamy indulgence. But, holy cow traditional macaroni and cheese is not a waist-friendly food. It typically weighs in at 600 calories and 30 grams of fat per serving, with very little micro-nutrients to speak of. Additionally, the standard white pasta and heavy dairy will wreak havoc on gut health, blood sugar stabilization, and your body’s ability to effectively burn fat. Let’s turn this yummy delight into a health friendly, (yet delicious) masterpiece. Shall we?
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The Scientific Quest for a “Healthy” Cheese Leaves us Flavorless

By Abra Pappa for Nutritious America

In a world of endless food “science” it isn’t terribly surprising that even the mighty cheese is subject to investigation, processing, and testing in an attempt to create a cheese-like-food-product that scientists will deem “healthier” by reducing sodium and fat. In this never ending quest to make all food “diet worthy” and eternal dieters “happy” there is no food spared from their turn in the science wheel. Yet, each time we’ve attempted to replace a natural, whole food with a processed version of the food the results of “health” have not exactly worked out.

Case in point: changing butter to margarine. The partially hydrogenated fats that were originally thought to be much healthier then butter’s saturated fat have since proved to be the exact opposite. Why would a “new” cheese be any better?

The average American consumes nearly 30 pounds of cheese per year; that is an awful lot of fat and salt. But, cheese is so much more than a block of fat and salt, it has a story, a life, a history.

If you have ever spent time with a cheese expert or any amount of time in a real cheese haven like Murray’s cheese shop in New York City, you may have been graced with some of the history and story behind cheese. Stories of generations of sheep farmers in France creating glorious cheese from humble resources, or small American artisinal cheese makers who, with a much shorter history of cheese making, are taking this culinary world by storm. Cheese has been consumed as a traditional food in many cultures for literally thousands and thousands of years, and yet it is just in the last 50+ years that we are seeing the steep decline in the health of people. It makes us ask, is cheese really to blame?
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