Spring Clean Your Kitchen: Food Ideas and a Free Tip Sheet

Happy Spring! 

happy-47083_640I’m sitting outside soaking up the 70 degree sun (and getting some much needed vitamin D). I hope you are enjoying some warmer weather wherever you are.

We all need a little “sprucing up” after a long dark winter. I spent part of my weekend giving my kitchen a “refresh” and then I shared some food ideas on TV.

Get my 4-Step Kitchen Refresh 

If you love the idea of a kitchen “refresh” here’s a little gift for you. Download my 4-step kitchen refresh for free and share it with your friends. If you like stuff like this, get on my e-mail list. It’s free and it’s the best way to get my latest and greatest – including my “feel good guide” which launches next week!!!

Below you will find my TV clip, some easy snacking and food prep tips, and links.

(disclosure: Applegate, Sargento, Wonderful Pistachios, Body Armor, and Vitafusion are clients of mine. I was compensated for TV.)

Applegate HALF TIME Natural and Organic Snack Kit

This snack is the first nationally available natural and organic pre-packed lunch and snack kit.  It’s a great way to eat healthier with the busy lifestyle spring brings; sports, road trips, and living on the go. HALF TIME group shot

The Applegate Half Time snack option means parents don’t have to sacrifice quality for convenience. Kids on average snack at least 3 times a day so the Applegate half time is a great option to have.

Half Time comes in three varieties with no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.  The meat has no added nitrates and is antibiotic free. When you compare the nutrition to other pre-packed kits, Applegate HALF TIME has less sodium and fat but more protein. There are three options: turkey and cheese, ham and cheese, and bologna and cheese.

Sargento: Portable Protein and Portion Control 

“Sweet Dreams are made of Cheese…” 
SringCheese_OriginalPeople love cheese and I love recommending Sargento Natural Cheese Snacks – a natural source of protein that keeps you fueled and satisfied.

The Sargento Natural String Cheese Snacks has to be one of my favorites.  It has 8g of protein per serving—that is more protein than a serving of almonds or a hard-boiled egg.  They also help you stay fueled when you are on the go, without sacrificing taste.

Here are some ways I like to eat them: I like paring the Sharp Cheddar with blueberries and carrots; Pepper Jack paired with shelled edamame; and string cheese made into Caprese skewers.

For more smart snack ideas visit sargento.com/snacks

Put Wonderful Pistachios On Your Desk and Counter

One of my favorite nuts to have on hand are Wonderful Pistachios.  Every one-ounce serving has six grams of plant-powered protein and three grams of fiber, which may help you, stay full for longer. WP flavors packshot

Plus, with nearly 90% “good-for-you” unsaturated fats, pistachios are a healthier snack choice when you are craving a crunchy treat.  When you crack open pistachios, you will notice vibrant green and purple hues.  These are the antioxidants present in the nuts.

Try all the Wonderful varieties including roasted and salted, sweet chili, and no salt added. Get a coupon and watch their hilarious videos at www.GetCrackin.com

Upgrade Your Sports Drink With Body Armor

It’s not just about the food, this spring.  We can’t forget exercise and especially hydration.

Potassium packed sports drink, no artificial ingredients.

Potassium packed sports drink, no artificial ingredients.

If you are an athlete or have a very active child, you might benefit from more than just plain water especially activity over 60 minutes.  I often get asked, what the best sports drink is for their active child and I always recommend Body Armor.

Body Armor has no artificial ingredients and is low in sodium – unlike other sports drinks.  This sports drink is packed with potassium electrolytes and vitamins than any other sports drink, and it’s made with coconut water.

Try these five great tasting flavors such as, fruit punch, orange mango, and strawberry banana.

Cover Your Bases With Vitafusion

VF_MultiVitesDespite our best intentions for healthy eating, we don’t always hit our vitamin and mineral targets.  Taking a good multivitamin can help you cover those bases.

I love Vitafusion Multivites – one serving of two gummies provides a fusion of essential vitamins, minerals and natural fruit flavors in a delicious gummy.  Vitafusion is actually the #1 adult gummy vitamin brand rooted in the belief that healthy habits should also be enjoyable so you keep doing them.

The great thing about these vitamins is that they are made in the U.S. with no artificial colors or flavors.  They are also easy to take—you don’t even need water.

Another Vitafusion I like is Biotin, which provides an excellent source of this essential B vitamin important for skin health.

For kids 2+ years, the gummy vitamin is Lil Critters and has the same great quality as the adult version.

(disclosure: Applegate, Sargento, Wonderful Pistachios, Body Armor, and Vitafusion are clients of mine. I was compensated for TV.)


Healthier Hair Skin and Nails with Vitafusion Plus

I’m still a-glow after spending a day with the top beauty editors in the country! Dozens of women from publications like Women’s Health, Fit Pregnancy, and Glamour gathered at Dream Dry for a break from the day to focus on self-care, sponsored by vitafusion, the #1 adult gummy vitamin brand.

#vitafusionbeauty with Rebecca Scritchfield

Beauty From Inside Out

All the beauty editors received a professional blow dry from the Dream Dry stylists and I got one too!PicMonkey Collage_Hair   As the nutrition expert, I was there to help them learn about all the ways we support our beauty from the inside out. It’s not just what you put on your body, but what you put in it that contributes to healthy hair skin and nails. We tasted recipes I created that provided nutrients important for hair, skin, and nails like yummy parfaits with blueberries, wheat berries, pecan and Greek yogurt. Check out this fun infographic I created that highlights key nutrients and food ideas for beauty.important-nutrients-infographic

Despite our best intentions, we don’t always get what we need every day. In fact, most individuals get less than half of the daily recommended fruits and vegetables.

The editors sampled two vitafusion gummies that support healthy hair skin and nails. They tried the new vitafusion MultiVites Plus Hair, Skin and Nails- a complete gummy multivitamin with biotin and leutin and vitafusion Extra Strength Biotin.

PicMonkey Collage_VF2

I recommend both of these delicious and easy to take gummies. The most important health habits are ones you can stick to consistently and vitafusion gummies are more enjoyable than swallowing a pill. I love that they have no artificial colors or flavors and that they are made in the USA.

Your Self Care Checklist 

Inside out beauty also includes the ways you can work on your well-being each day. From getting enough sleep to scheduling a “me time happy hour” for yourself, daily choices add up to make a big impact on health. Check out the tips I provided for daily self care in this booklet, found here .

What About You?

What do you do to support inside out beauty? Do you take any vitamins for hair, skin, and nails?

Disclosure: I work with vitafusion, but was not compensated to blog about this event. 

Debunking Cleanse and Detox Diets

It is a million dollar question: Are detoxes and cleanses all they’re cracked up to be? The idea that drinking juice or taking a magic pill is going to do a better job than our own organs is very misleading to consumers.  I recently sat down with ABC7‘s Suzanne Kennedy to explain why detox diets and cleanses are a waste of money, and could actually be doing more harm than good to your health. Check out the video clip below and be sure to read on to learn the truth behind the hype.

[Read more…]

Diet Fraud: Sensa/HCG Fined $34 Million for Fraudulent Health Claims

Oh happy day! Finally the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is hammering down on companies with misleading claims about their products body-slimming capabilities. Four companies, L’Occitane, Sensa, LeanSpa LLC and HCG Diet Direct, will all receive hefty fines for using deceptive language and fraudulent claims marketed towards diet-driven consumers. I was thrilled to appear on FOX News Your World with Neil Cavuto yesterday to discuss this issue.

Will an additive found in candy really make you less hungry? 

Not only are these companies claiming unrealistic weight loss results but they are also making false claims about their product ingredients.  Products like Sensa which claim to reduce hunger and melt away the pounds when sprinkled on foods primarily contain maltodextrin, a starch-based food additive commonly used for the production of soda and candy. HCG (made from human placenta) is supposed to be taken with a very-low calorie diet of less than 800 calories per day. Maybe that should be front and center on the label, instead of just in the fine print.

Will a slap on the wrist make them change their tune?

While these companies have agreed to refund many of these mislead consumers, $34 million in fines is a drop in the bucket for the $60 billion plus diet industry. Sensa and L’Occitane will continue to stand by their products and bogus health claims, selling desperate consumers hopeless creams and powders that will result in nothing more than a slimmer pocket book.

Click below to see my appearance on FOX News defending consumers’ rights in the need for government involvement in this matter.

Here are a few highlights from my segment :

  • People argue that consumers’ own common sense should be the judge versus the Federal Government in this dieting matter.
  • As a Registered Dietitian I believe that every consumer deserves to have accurate information about the products they purchase.
  • Consumers are desperate for quick weight loss fixes, but the truth is diets don’t work.  95% of all diets fail and most dieters will regain their lost weight in 1-5 years.
  • FAT CHANCE: There is no magic powder, cream, or pill that is going to make you skinny, yet consumers continue to buy into the multi billion dollar diet industry each year.
  • It’s about lifestyle choices. Less than 5% of adults participate in 30 minutes of physical activity each day.

The Hard Facts About Dieting:

  • 35% of “occasional dieters” progress into disordered eating and as many as 25% advance to full-blown eating disorders.
  • Dieters typically make four to five attempts per year.
  • Only 5% of women naturally have the body type advertisements portray as real.
  • 90% of Americans eat more sodium than is recommended for a healthy diet
  • 75% of American women surveyed endorsed unhealthy thoughts, feelings or behaviors related to food or their bodies.

Fall Comfort Foods You Can Feel Good About

Fall is in the air – it’s a time when many of us start craving our favorite comfort foods like casseroles, soups, and stews.   I love comfort foods like soups, chilis, and casseroles – they’re easy to prepare and can be full of nutrients if you choose the right ingredients.  Recently I appeared on Let’s Talk Live DC to discuss my favorite tips for a healthy fall.

Check out the video below or read on for some highlights:

Eggs Are Back for Breakfastvegetable__egg_and_cheddar_strata_475x387_72_RGB

I love egg dishes for a warm comforting breakfast that’s full of nutrients.  Eggs had a bad rap for a while, but research now shows that egg consumption does not contribute to increased risk of cardiovascular disease.  I created this savory egg strata recipe for Cabot using their seriously sharp cheddar; it’s perfect for weekend entertaining because I can prepare it ahead of time, so that all I have to do in the morning is pop it in the oven.  Any leftovers make a wonderful lunch or light dinner.

12915 VF MV, Cal, Vit D FP Ad Boomer(2)Cover your Bases with a Multivitamin

During cold and flu season I take extra steps to keep my family healthy – not only do we get flu shots, but I also make sure that we take multivitamins to reduce our risks of getting sick.  Gummy vitamins are one my favorites because they’re delicious and convenient. I prefer Vitafusion MultiVites because they’re made in the USA, contain only natural colors and flavors, and just two gummies are a complete vitamin and mineral supplement.  MultiVites are made for adults, and there is also a kid version, L’il Critters Gummy Vites, for the younger set.

Fall for Chili

walmart-logoChili is always a crowd-pleaser, and I love that you can’t mess it up!  You can use any combination of beans and vegetables to create a nutritious, warming meal.  I used fresh celery, carrot, and onion and canned Great Value tomatoes, corn, and beans from Walmart in this Easy Chickpea, Turkey, and Bean Chili, which is full of lean protein and filling, heart-healthy fiber.  I love shopping at Walmart for fresh produce because they have incredible prices and offer 100% money back guarantee.

Snack Smartkind_bar_darkchocolatecinnamonpecan_2

Snacks are everywhere, but how do you know which ones to pick?  A lot of snack bars look healthy, but are actually loaded with sugar, fat, and suspicious artificial ingredients.

I always recommend that my clients read labels to choose real foods that are nutritionally balanced.  KIND is my favorite brand of on-the-go snack.  KIND bars are absolutely delicious, and they’re made with ingredients you can actually see and pronounce. You should not need a chemistry degree to understand what you are eating.

I’m currently crunching on their “nuts and spices” line of bars. They have only 5 grams of sugar or less per bar.  I go between the Dark Chocolate Cinnamon Pecan and Madagascar Vanilla. Not only are they delicious on-the-go, but they make a great topping for yogurt and oatmeal.

 What are your favorite tips for staying healthy as the weather gets cooler? Leave a comment below and share your ideas!


Disclosure: I worked with Walmart, Vitafusion, and KIND for the TV segment, but did not receive compensation for writing this blog post.