protein breakfast

The Diva Chef’s Crustless Quiche & Salad

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Elise the Diva Chef shared her Grilled Peach Salsa with us on Tumblr, but where she truly excels is in the actual preparation of her recipes, like you’ll see in this video. She often has a segment on CBS Pittsburgh and is soon launching her new cooking show Fitness Foodies on YouTube.

This lighter quiche recipe makes for a healthy & delicious meal for the whole family. Check out the video to go with the recipe.

The Diva Chef’s Crustless Spinach Quiche

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • (10 ounce) chopped spinach
  • 5 eggs, beaten
  • 3 cups shredded cheese of your choice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9 inch pie pan.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are soft. Stir in spinach and continue cooking until excess moisture has evaporated.

In a large bowl, combine eggs, cheese, salt and pepper. Add spinach mixture and stir to blend. Scoop into prepared pie pan.

Bake in preheated oven until eggs have set, about 30 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Yields six servings.

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Q & A: Shake It Up With Protein

We’ll acknowledge it right from the beginning: protein shakes have developed quite the reputation for themselves. They’ve been seen out and about with many a bodybuilder and serious gym-goer and have made no attempts to hide their ability to boost muscle mass. But at Greater Pittsburgh Medical Weight Loss, we look beyond that stereotype and see them for what they truly are: a (not chalky) delicious, nutritious way to power through the day for those who lift pens, purses, and Post-its, not just weights. Our Lifestyle Educator & Wellness Coordinator, Bernadette Kabay, is an expert; so, we turned to her for some tips on how to shake up your diet.

What role does protein play in weight loss?

BK: Higher-protein diets help people better control their appetites and calorie intake. Diets higher in protein and moderate in carbs, along with regular exercise can reduce blood fats and help balance insulin levels. It also helps maintain lean tissue (muscle) while burning fat for fuel.

How much protein do you need on a daily basis?

BK: Generally, 30% of your diet should be protein, 30% healthy fat and 40% healthy carbohydrates.  If you are more active or trying to drop a few pounds, add a few more grams of protein.

Best sources of protein are found in fish, lean meats, eggs, and plant sources such as beans, soy, nuts and seeds. Protein shakes are excellent to fill in the holes and add an additional source of protein to help hold onto muscle and lose fat when dieting and exercising.

When do you think are the best times to drink a protein shake?

BK: As a replacement for breakfast when time is short or you’re on the go; 45 minutes to 1 hour before or after a workout; and mid-day when a healthy snack  is not available.

Can too much protein be a bad thing?

BK: Additional protein may not be appropriate for pregnant and nursing women, or for those individuals with chronic kidney issues or liver disease.

What’s your favorite flavor we have?

BK: I like the vanilla. I add our Reds powder to it, add a tsp of fiber and a little ground flax seed and water. Now, I have all three components of a meal in a glass! Healthy protein, healthy carbohydrate, healthy fat and fiber. For a summer morning start or after a workout, I may substitute 2 oz of orange juice for the Reds and it tastes like a vanilla creamsicle!

Have any more questions for Bernadette? Drop us a quick comment! 

Best Breakfasts For Burning Belly Fat

ImageCombine these super starts with our Belly Fat Blasting Workout, and you’ll be well on your way to whittling your middle. Contrary to what you may be thinking, the secret to losing fat is not the following two words: low fat. These types of foods and diets tend to be high in refined carbohydrates, which will actually increase belly fat with those who already have it. Commercial, low fat diet foods are usually very high in added sugars, even if they don’t taste sweet.

Another big mistake people make when wanting to lose belly fat is skipping breakfast or not eating enough for breakfast. A bowl of low fat cereal and a cup of coffee can leave you ravenous by lunch.

Instead, you want to focus on protein. You want to eat foods that will help regulate the hormones that promote belly fat in your body: insulin, cortisol and adrenaline. Start your day off the right way by eating what your body can use as fuel, not what will send your blood sugar on a spike and plummet. That’s no way to set your day up for success. Here are five breakfasts recommended by Get Fit Chicago to help you slim down your middle.

1) 2 Eggs + Sliced Tomato + Sprouted English Muffin w/ Butter or Coconut Oil
Eggs are an excellent breakfast, and it’s important to eat the whole egg. They’re full of a valuable nutrient called choline that is completely absent if only eat the whites. Also, sprouted grains help to reduce the amount of phytic acid in our grains, because we don’t need as much as we’re used to getting. A recommended brand for sprouted grains is Food for Life.

2) Oatmeal + Whole Milk (or full fat coconut milk) + Walnuts + Blueberries + Cinnamon
Oatmeal is one of those foods that can depend entirely on how you prepare it whether or not it is a healthy choice. Most pre-packaged oatmeals are filled to the brim with sugar – the instant oatmeals break down quickly in your body, not good for steady blood sugar levels. The milk and walnuts will add plenty of healthy fat and protein. The blueberries, raw if you can, are a great low glycemic food and the cinnamon adds taste but also helps you stay  satisfied for at least a few hours.

3) Full Fat Yogurt + Cinnamon + 1/2 Green Apple + Almond Butter
This tasty combo takes less than two minutes to prep, so it’s great to make if you’re short on time and still want to kick your metabolism into high gear.  Also, green apples are usually lower on the glycemic index than red ones.

4) Mini-BLT Quinoa Cups
If you have a little more time,try these Mini-BLT Quinoa Cups from Iowa Girl Eats. The little cups are healthy, gluten-free and loaded with everything you need to burn belly fat.

5) Strawberry Avocado Smoothie
Avocados are such an awesome source of nutrients, have a smooth flavor and are really easy to disguise in just about anything. Add the strawberry into the mix and you’ve got a delicious, fresh-as-ever breakfast.

Here’s the recipe:

Strawberry Avocado Smoothie
serves 1

1 c. frozen strawberries
¼  ripe avocado
¼ c. plain full fat yogurt
1 c. water
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1 packet stevia (or 2 tsp honey)

Puree all ingredients in a blender or with an immersion blender. Enjoy.

What do you usually eat for breakfast? Tell us in a comment & we’ll tell you if it’s best or worst!