What's in that drink?

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Ditching sugary drinks, like soda, can be a challenge. Breaking that habit is much easier when you find drinks that are still full of flavor, but without added sugars.

Juice can be high in both natural and added sugars. Try diluting it with carbonated water and ice cubes for a refreshing, bubbly drink that is lower in sugar. 

For another twist, add chia seeds to create chia water. This idea is based on chia fresca, a drink popular in South America and Mexico. Chia seeds are high in omega 3s, fiber, iron, and calcium.

 

Orange Turmeric Chia Water

Makes 1 glass

Ingredients

  • 4 fl oz Orange Turmeric juice*

  • 4 fl oz water, carbonated or still

  • 1-3 tsp chia seeds

  • Ice


Instructions

  1. Sprinkle chia seeds inside ice-filled glass.

  2. Add 1/2 cup or 4 fl oz of orange turmeric juice.

  3. Top with 1/2 cup or 4 fl oz of carbonated or still water.

  4. Finish with a straw, preferably glass or stainless steel**.


Notes

*Use your favorite flavor of juice. 

**The pictured straw is stainless steel, a beautiful and environmentally-friendly straw. Glass straws are another option for decorating your glass and enjoying beverages in a responsible way.

WGN's Living Healthy Chicago

This week I was honored to be a featured expert on WGN TV's Living Healthy Chicago. Jackie Bender and I discussed the basics of mindful eating, including ways to make meals more satisfying and enjoyable. Below is my recipe featured on the segment. Sign up for my email list to receive more nutrition tips and recipes.

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Mindful Greens & Grains

Grain Salad Bowls include a variety of flavors in bite-sized amounts. They make it easier to slow down and enjoy the taste of each bite. Combine fresh veggies, greens, and whole grains for a nutritious meal that's quick and easy to prepare. 

Makes 4 bowls

Ingredients

  • 4 cups of fresh spinach

  • 2 cups fresh broccoli florets, cut into bite-sized pieces

  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved

  • 1 cup cucumber, peeled & diced

  • 2-3 radishes, thinly sliced

  • 1 avocado, diced

  • 1 lime, cut into 4 wedges

  • 2 cups uncooked quinoa

  • 1 cup (8 oz) hummus*

  • 1/2 cup (4 fl oz) homemade vinaigrette**:

    • 2 tbsp vinegar (balsamic, apple cider, rice, sherry, etc)

    • 6 tbsp vegetable oil (olive, grapeseed, or canola)

    • salt & pepper, to taste

  • 2-3 scallions, chopped

  • hot sauce, to taste


Instructions

  1. Boil water for quinoa and prepare according to package instructions. 

  2. Cool cooked quinoa in a shallow pan in the refrigerator.

  3. Mix vinegar, vegetable oil, and seasoning in a mixing bowl using a whisk. Optionally, shake ingredients together in sealed mason jar.

  4. Chop, dice, and slice fresh veggies while cooling the quinoa.

  5. Divide cooled quinoa, spinach, and fresh veggies among 4 bowls.  

  6. Add 2 - 3 tbsp of hummus, 1/4 avocado, and 1 lime wedge to each bowl.

  7. Pour 1 - 2 tbsp vinaigrette over diced veggies (broccoli, tomato, cucumber, radish) 

  8. Sprinkle chopped scallions over hummus.

  9. Drizzle hot sauce over hummus and avocado. 

  10. Serve with a healthy, vibrant drink like Orange Turmeric Chia Water.


Notes

*Hummus:  Use any store-bought flavor that you enjoy. Making hummus in your food processor at home takes extra work, but can be a fun way to experiment with your favorite flavors when time allows.

**Vinaigrette: Store-bought salad dressings can be high in sodium and added sugars. Homemade dressing is fast, flavorful, and affordable.