Health Loves: Healthy Cooking (and Link Up!)

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Today we have the last featured post in the Healthy Living Tuesdays series for February,“Health Loves”  The last Tuesday of the month – do you know what that means? It’s LINK UP DAY!!

One of the things I love most about our HLT series is the open-invitation to participate.  The last Tuesday of each month we host a link up, asking for your posts on the featured topic of the month.  Participating is a great challenge: How will you make your post stand out in a community of bloggers writing under the same theme?  Plus, the link up is an awesome way to promote your greatest content!

The previous Tuesdays of this month we’ve been showing off some of our members own posts on the subject.  Be sure to look back at their posts if you haven’t seen them already.  It’s a great way to find new bloggers to read and get to know your fellow HLB Members.  [If you’re interested in writing for future Healthy Living Tuesday featured posts, drop us an email athealthylivingblogs@gmail.com.]

If you’ve already written a post under the “Health Loves” topic, link it up following today’s featured post. If you haven’t yet, you have a few weeks before the link up closes!  That’s a lot of house keeping from me, I’ll turn it over to today’s featured blogger for more on this month’s topic. Happy Blogging! – Heather


Kelly - NTTCHi There… I’m Kelly and I blog over at No Thanks to Cake.

My blog started off as a journal for myself… something that I never planned to share with anyone else but that was a record of my planned 91 lb weight loss. I was determined to learn to say “no thanks” to cake more often, and to shed that extra weight I’d been carrying around.

During those initial days, I didn’t even think I could possibly come close to achieving my goal… but now, 81 lbs later, I’m thrilled that I started this journey and stuck to it!

Before After 4

When HLB was looking for bloggers to guest blog about their “healthy loves” for the month of February, I knew what mine was immediately… HEALTHY COOKING!

I started my weight loss journey on Jenny Craig. Prepacked, preplanned meals have helped me to shed the majority of my weight, but I was a little worried about how I was going to transition to normal foods once I achieved my goals. Jenny gave me lots of great guidance, but how was I going to be able to cook again?

Prior to joining Jenny Craig, I cooked decadent dishes and enjoyed bottomless servings. How in the world was I going to re-enter the kitchen and cook in a way that supported my new healthy lifestyle?

I did what any good blogger does… I started experimenting with it on my blog. I leveraged recipes from Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, and one of my favorite bloggers, SkinnyTaste… and I was reunited once again with my love for cooking.

My cooking style took on a whole new look though, one that’s going to help me maintain my lifestyle for years to come. I never want to feel deprived, and I still want to eat all of my favorite foods. I’ve been able to do this by embracing all that I can create via my stove, and following these guidelines along the way:

· I Measure Everything – I used to kind of “eyeball” ingredients and improvise the dishes until they tasted the way I wanted them to. Now, I follow the exact instructions of each recipe, and calculate any modifications. Knowing the nutritional content of what I’m eating is important, so taking this extra step is worth it.

Vegetables

· I Use Alternative Ingredients – I experiment with healthier options like Greek yogurt, PB2, and Laughing Cow Cheese. Rather than using their full-fat, higher-calorie counterparts, I find flavor and satisfaction in these lighter options.

· I Adhere to Servings – This lesson has been one of the hardest to learn. If a recipe says that a serving is 1 cup, 1 cup is what I get. The remaining servings get portioned out and become lunch and dinner for days to come.

Servings

· I Try New Recipes Every Single Week - There are so many fantastic healthy recipes out there, I’m always trying something new. Without taking a chance, I would have never tried any of these fantastic treats:

Lasagna Soup

Orange Beef

Creamy Italian

Beef Tenderloin

· And, I Share My Favorites – Every week, I share at least two healthy recipes on NTTC. I know how important flavorful, yet nutritious meals are to my readers, so they challenge me to continue to deliver fabulous recipes along the way.

While I am still ten pounds away from my weight loss goal, I feel like I’ve achieved it already. Two years later, I’m healthier and happier than I’ve ever been in my adult life. To hear the rest of the story, stop by and visit me at No Thanks to Cake. I can’t wait to share with you what I’ve been cooking up this week!

xoxo – Kelly


And now it’s time for our link up of your posts!  We can’t wait to see how you tackled the subject "Health Loves."



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2 Responses to “Health Loves: Healthy Cooking (and Link Up!)”

  1. Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers
    February 26, 2013 at 6:58 am #

    Wonderful post and what a great inspiration! Thank you for sharing your story!!!

  2. Jenny@The Wellness Journey
    February 26, 2013 at 7:38 am #

    Kelly! You look GREAT! Loved your post!