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Top 10 Must-Haves on Your Grocery List for Weight Loss

When you lead a busy life, grocery shopping can be a time-consuming chore. If you’re beginning a new diet, you have probably seen a number of resources that offer sample grocery lists and suggested items that deserve a permanent place in your pantry or refrigerator.

While those lists can be helpful, they are sometimes more confusing than useful. Recently, we caught up with Caroline Cederquist, M.D. and founder of BistroMD, a gourmet meal delivery service developed by physicians. Cederquist shared her top ten grocery list items that she recommends patients purchase when they want to eat a healthier diet.

“The shopping list consists of top 10 mainstay items that help you stay on track, lose weight, and add lots of flavor to meals and snacks,” Cederquist said. “A lot of these items can also be used to substitute higher calorie foods for healthier ones.”


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March Madness Munchies

If you plan on sitting on your duff this weekend watching the March Madness Sweet 16, do yourself a favor and don’t fill up on the typical watch party snacks. Greasy potato chips, fried chicken wings and calorie-packed cheese dips are common fare at these parties. Whether you’re hosting the crowd or have been invited to attend, be prepared with healthier snack options. Your guests won’t notice the difference and you’ll look like you’re helping out the host if you are the guest. These are our top two seeds:
March Madness
Cherry Almond Clusters are a sweet, crunchy twist on traditional popcorn balls.

Ingredients
19 cups air-popped popcorn
2 cups granulated sugar (substitute Splenda, with zero calories)
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 tsp. vinegar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tsp. almond extract
1 cup maraschino cherries, cut into quarters (use fresh cherries to reduce calories)
1/2 cup blanched, whole almonds, toasted

Preparation
1. Keep popcorn warm in a 300 degree F oven
2. In a heavy medium-size saucepan, combine sugar, water, corn syrup, vinegar and salt
3. Bring to a boil; clip candy thermometer to pan
4. Cook syrup to 250 degrees F (hard ball stage)
5. Remove saucepan from heat
6. Quickly stir in almond extract
7. Scatter cherries and almonds over the popcorn
8. Slowly pour syrup over all; toss lightly to coat evenly
9. Spread popcorn on sprayed cookie sheet and let cool
10. Separate into clusters with a fork

Caribbean Chicken Kabob have a refreshing flavor and offer plenty of protein and fresh veggies.

Ingredients
4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 lime rind, finely grated
2 Tbs. lime juice
1 Tbs. rum
1 packet sweetener
1 tsp. cinnamon
Fresh veggies and fruit like mushrooms, peppers, onions, zucchini or pineapple

Preparation
1. Cut chicken into bite sized chunks
2. Place in a bowl with the lime rind, juice, rum, sweetener and cinnamon
3. Marinate 1 hour
4. Save the juices and thread chicken on 4 wooden skewers with desired vegetables
5. Cook the skewers under a broiler or grill for 8-10 minutes, turning occasionally and basting with the juices

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