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Thursday, September 6, 2012

Winter Weight, Foods to Eat to Stay on Track and Minestrone Soup Recipe



Some of the best foods can help you maintain your weight and still be healthy all winter long.
Keep in mind to limit salt intake. Water retention is a big culprit for that extra weight gain, up to an additional 5 pounds of water weight, however drinking water is very important and not to be confused with salt water retention. Even though it's winter you still need to stay hydrated.
Vegetables are in abundance that are always a great choice. Even some of the higher carb vegetables can be added to a healthy salad. Sweet potatoes, cabbage, brussel sprouts, kale, winter squash are among the few that add additional vitamins and nutrients essential to our health.
A great source of protein are legumes, beans can be made so many ways. In soups, stews, chili. I highly recommend a good minestrone soup.
Canned salmon and sardines also needed for Vitamin D which the sun provides found in both these fish.
Oranges and other citrus will provide Vitamin C, also needed for the winter months when flu and colds flourish.
Fueling your body in the right direction will make you feel and look better.

Recipe for Healthy Winter Minestrone Soup:


1 1/2 pounds of fresh plum tomatoes cleaned put through food processor left chunky or 1- 28 ounce can plum tomatoes chopped
1 onion minced
1 cup chopped curly cabbage, kale or spinach
1/2 cup chopped fennel
2 cups zucchini chopped
2 cups finger carrots
3 stalks fresh celery chopped
2 cups canned white beans of choice
3 cups water
1 tablespoon each dried oregano, basil, parsley
pinch of rosemary
3 garlic cloves finely minced
Optional: replace water with chicken broth (homemade no salt)
salt and pepper to taste or use 1/8 teaspoon each
pinch cayenne pepper

In a medium saucepan, add olive oil, garlic and onion. Saute for 3 minutes. Add the rest of the vegetables, tomatoes with juices, herbs, spices and seasonings.  Add beans. Cook for around 45 minutes until vegetables are soft.
Another option is to add pastine. You can cook pastine of choice seperately in boiled water and add just before serving.