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THE FITBIT BLOG

Top 10 Healthy, Guilt-Free Pizza Options (yes!)

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Today’s guest post comes from Lauren Slayton, the author of The Little Book of Thin and creator of the Foodtrainers blog.

Healthy Pizza

 

Last night, I had a meeting with a fairly new nutrition client. I’ve provided him with ways to make a healthier version of his beloved egg sandwich (omega 3 eggs, sprouted English muffin, avocado) and other sensible swaps. “This plan is so livable” he remarked. I laughed, “any eating regime you embark on must me livable even enjoyable.” For me, enjoyable means pizza and pasta. I’ve told you about our Foodtrainers’ favorite healthy pastas and now it’s pizza’s turn.

Here are our top 10 ways to eat more pizza while staying fit.

  1. Cauliflower Pizza: this concept has taken the internet (and Pinterest) by storm. It really gives you the feeling of pizza crust.
  1. Many chains have gluten free or whole grain option. My favorite truly healthy pizza (pre and probiotics in your crust) is Naked Pizza.
  1. Portobello Pizza: we make these often at our house. The mushrooms give pizza a meatiness (without meat). The recipe link uses low-fat cheese, I’m not a fan but feel free to use any cheese you like. Your pizza, your rules.
  1. Socca: I believe socca originated in Nice. It’s a flatbread made from chickpea flour. I use this recipe and while it’s delicious sans toppings it makes for a great pizza base.
  1. Against All Grain: this is the best frozen, already made, pizza. I love Against All Grain’s pesto pizza and this Vermont company takes ingredients seriously and makes a quality product.
  1. Paleo Pizza: Julian’s makes a paleo pizza mix with almond flour, arrowroot, pumpkin and egg whites.
  1. Breakfast (Egg) Pizza: there are different versions of this, it makes a great brunchy item. Some are more like omelet pizzas but this one fluffs up a bit.
  1. English Muffin Pizza: these are a great lunch option. Look for “sprouted” English muffins as they have more protein and are less processed.
  1. Paleo Bread: for a gluten or grain free lunchtime pizza here are two final ideas. Paleo bread can be kept frozen (and sliced) in the freezer. Add your sauce and toppings and it’s as easy as that.
  1. Mexican Pizza: you can use a tortilla as your pizza base too. These almond flour minis are delicious.

With any of these options use a lower sugar tomato sauce (or pesto sauce works well) or make your own. Cheese should be organic whenever possible.

Which of these options would you want to try? Any other healthier pizza ideas? Any pizza shops with interesting offerings in your area? What’s the best pizza you’ve ever had?

Lauren SlaytonLauren Slayton is the author of The Little Book of Thin and created the Foodtrainers blog. She has a Master’s Degree in Clinical Nutrition from New York University and appeared in Allure, In Style, Cooking Light and more. She previously wrote about Healthy Game-Day Snacks. 

Celebrity Trainer Harley Pasternak Shares His Tips for Losing Weight and Staying Fit

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Harley Pasternak offers his tips on losing weight and staying fit

Harley Pasternak has been training some of the biggest celebrities in Hollywood for years. With the release of his latest book, 5 Pounds, we got the chance to ask him for a few of his top tips for losing weight and staying fit! We were also lucky enough to receive 20 copies of his new book that we’ll be giving away. Read on to learn what you can do to start getting fit today, and how to enter to win your copy!

What are a few things Fitbit users can start doing today to help kickstart their weight loss?

Don’t be afraid to get a little less efficient with your day. Park farther away from the entrance to the grocery store. Take your dog around the block rather than just letting her out in the back yard. Take your groceries inside in three trips instead of one. Shovel your walk instead of using a snowblower.

One thing I like to do is to make plans for walking coffees with my friends. And I have an earpiece for my phone so I can make my phone calls while I’m moving.

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How To Pack Your Lunch Like a Health Pro

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Healthy lunch

When it comes to lunch, it can be all too easy to throw a bag of chips and a PB&J into a bag and call it a day. Or to run next door to grab an 800-calorie sub instead. In the mad dash to get out of the house in the morning, adding one more thing to the routine can seem like too much.

But eating a healthy lunch doesn’t have to be such a chore. Here are just a few nutritious substitutions you can make for a hearty, healthy lunch.

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6 Ways to Stay Fit From 9–5

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Fitbit Zip at work

We’ve recently written about ways to fit in your workout, whether you’re hitting the gym or prefer to stay fit from the comfort of home. But even if you’re working out on a regular basis, studies show that sitting for long periods of time can still hurt your health in the long run – and that’s exactly what many of us do five times a week at the office.

But there’s good news! All you have to do to counter-balance the sitting you do throughout the day is to get up every half hour or so. If you’re looking for tips on making standing up a habit, we’ve got you covered with these six tips:

  1. Email less, talk more: There are times when emails are necessary, but oftentimes a quick chat with someone will work just as well – if not better! So next time you’re tempted to shoot Jane in accounting a quick email, get up and go ask her in person instead. Your step count will thank you.
  2. Stand or walk during meetings: If you have willing participants, encourage them to stand up throughout the meeting. Or, if your meeting doesn’t require your computers, take things outside by going for a short walk.
  3. Stand up every 1/2 hour: Make sure you get up every thirty minutes, even if just to stretch or walk around for a few minutes. Walking to meetings or grabbing another cup of coffee totally counts.
  4. Practice stretching: Stretching can be a good way to wake yourself up if you’re in need of a boost but are done with coffee for the day. It’s also a good excuse to get up for a few minutes.
  5. Try our 5-minute yoga moves: Last summer we shared out 5-minute yoga moves you can do at your desk. It’s not standing, but it’s a great way to get a little more exercise in during your day, and you can always stand up before or after you try them!
  6. Find space to try your favorite exercises: Sometimes it can be hard to fit in a full workout at any point of your day, but that doesn’t mean the little things won’t add up. If you can, find a quiet spot at the office you can fit in a few squats or lunges – something that won’t disturb others – to help you take advantage of any small break.

How do you stay active at the office? Let us know in the comments!

Rocco DiSpirito’s Top Nutrition Tips

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Rocco DiSpirito integrates Fitbit into his new cookbook

We’re just about to wrap up our #CookYourButtOff giveaway, where we’re giving away 25 copies of Rocco DiSpirito’s new book on Twitter! Things are coming to an end tomorrow, but since March is Nutrition Month we managed to ask Rocco for some of his top nutrition tips.

If you aren’t one of the lucky winners of Rocco’s new book, you can also buy a copy now. Every recipe in the book includes a barcode that you can scan with the Fitbit app to automatically add the recipe’s nutritional information to your Fitbit food log. Pretty cool, right?

In the meantime, check out Rocco’s nutrition tips below:

What are your top three nutrition tips?

1. Make eating a conscious process vs an unconscious one. If you are in the habit of craving and indulging, you are an unconscious eater. To eat consciously is like spending money consciously: you evaluate the pros and cons and make a decision that’s good for you vs bad for you. Once you learn the art of impulse control you will begin to make healthier choices.

2. Like that awful boyfriend or girlfriend you finally got rid of after years of tolerating them, toss out all forms of sugar. Disrupt your pantry and throw away anything that is made with added sugar.

3. Give up fast food in a hurry. Choose “better for you” options like cooking for yourself or fresh salad bars so you control what you eat.

What are your favorite healthy things to snack on?

Hazelnuts, dark chocolate, apples, and veggies and hummus!

What are your tips for not overeating?

Eat more food. Eat every three hours. If you eat more frequently you tend to eat less at one sitting. Don’t allow yourself to ever feel hunger.

Rocco DiSpirito Recipe: Soy Spaghetti with Shrimp and Hand-Chopped Pomodoro Sauce

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We’re excited to feature a few recipes from award-winning chef and best-selling author Rocco DiSpirito‘s new book, Cook Your Butt Off!, which includes bar codes for each recipe which can be scanned and automatically added to your Fitbit food log! You can order Rocco DiSpirito’s new book now.

Rocco DiSpirito Spaghetti Recipe

To whip up something delicious, quick, and healthy, try this recipe. I’ve used a very healthy pasta alternative, made from soy, low-calorie boiled shrimp, and red pepper flakes for a metabolism boost. This full-flavored dish will have everyone around the table singing “That’s Amore.”

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Heart Healthy Shopping Cart

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Today’s guest post comes from Lauren Slayton, the author of The Little Book of Thin and creator of the Foodtrainers blog.

heart healthy food

February is American Heart Month. Practically daily headlines tell us “a study has found” ________ (insert food) is heart healthy. The most recent example I was asked about was a study on beet juice. While I am not disputing that beet juice can lower blood pressure (in this study with 64 people), no single food is the answer. When clients come in to lower their blood pressure, or have a family history of heart disease, or they simply want their hearts to be healthy, we will discuss multiple foods. Because I only have your attention for a couple of minutes (hopefully) below is my top 10 list for heart healthy foods.

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Rocco DiSpirito Recipe: Chicken with Glazed Eggplant and Cauliflower Rice

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We’re excited to feature a few recipes from award-winning chef and best-selling author Rocco DiSpirito‘s new book, Cook Your Butt Off!, which includes bar codes for each recipe which can be scanned and automatically added to your Fitbit food log! You can order Rocco DiSpirito’s new book now.

Rocco DiSpirito's chicken with glazed eggplant recipe

Skinless chicken has become sort of like cottage cheese, the ubiquitous base upon which many weight-loss diets are built. But it doesn’t register well on the ol’ excitement meter. I mean, how many times have you found yourself craving a naked, unseasoned piece of chicken?

Not me—I’d throw up the white flag and order pizza if the road to lasting weight loss looked like an endless parade of plain chicken breasts.

Take the advice of a guy who has gobbled up his fair share of chicken: Don’t abandon it altogether, but do what you can to break up the monotony. Especially during dieting, it’s important not to get lazy in your chicken prep, and it’s just as important to add some perk to your poultry. That’s why I prefer to use chicken thighs over breasts, like I do in this recipe. Thighs are meatier and more flavorful, but still low in calories.

How Stress Affects the Heart

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Since February is American Heart Month, we’ve teamed up with the American Heart Association to bring you heart-healthy tips all month long! Our last post in this series featured Activities to Keep Your Heart Healthy.

How stress affects the heart

Getting – and staying – healthy takes a combination of good habits, like exercising, eating well, and getting enough sleep. But what part does stress play in overall health?

We asked board-certified cardiologist Tara Narula, M.D. to share how stress affects the heart:

Stress does a lot of things in the body. It will increase inflammation by increasing cortisol, which does damage over the long term. It releases other hormones like epinephrine and norepinephrine, which raise blood pressure. That’s good if you are trying to escape a wild animal, but if you are constantly being fed these hormones through everyday stress (for example, trying to meet deadlines, rushing to make meetings, etc.), it’s causing damage over time to all your blood vessels. That damage increases the risk of plaque buildup or can even cause a rupture of plaque. In some cases, intense stress can cause a heart attack.

Stress is not something we often talk a ton about, but it’s important to maintaining your health. There are ways to turn off a stress response. You can help moderate stress with exercise, yoga, meditation or other relaxation exercises.

If you feel that you should cut down on the stress in your life, try reducing it by getting active outside, going for a run, meditating, even getting more sleep.

Tara Narula, M.D.Board-certified cardiologist Tara Narula, M.D., is a volunteer spokesperson for the American Heart Association, Assistant Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine at Hofstra University NSLIJ School of Medicine and Associate Director of the Cardiac Care Unit at Lenox Hill Hospital/NSLIJ in Manhattan. She also serves as a medical contributor for “CBS This Morning.”

 

Healthy Chocolate Hall of Fame

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Today’s guest post comes from Lauren Slayton, the author of The Little Book of Thin and creator of the Foodtrainers blog.

Woman with coffee

I have good news, especially with Valentine’s Day coming up! You don’t have to cut chocolate in order to be fit and healthy. There are many ways to have a guilt-free chocolate fix. We spend a couple of weeks at Foodtrainers testing various chocolate treats (tough work I know) in order to come up with our best of the best or Healthy Chocolate Hall of Fame. Not only are these options OK to eat, I’d say they’re encouraged – just try not to enjoy more than one a day.

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