January 31, 2014

Skim milk VS whole milk (FactFriday #4)

As I started talking about the good and bad fats, I saw that many, many, many, many people don't know that dairy products are better left whole. Because I cannot cover all of them I will start with the most basic of them all: MILK!

So...which is the healthier choice?

January 29, 2014

Finals workout (FitWednesday #4)

Soooo, as I was saying in my last MondayTalk, finals are horrible. But working out helps not only your physic but also your mental health. Because I don't want to spend hours sweating and I much prefer studying I have made my own quick workout to do every time I get sluggish or demotivated or just feel like I need to move.

January 28, 2014

Healthy pasta (RecipeTuesday #4)

Lunch is the perfect time of day to load on carbohydrates because that is when your metabolism is at it's fastest. I love a nice plate of pasta at any time but because I am trying to be more health conscious these days I only eat carbs around 12-1 PM-ish so that I don't deprive myself of anything but not compromise my silhouette.

When pasta is all I can think of, I go for a more simple and less damaging alternative. 

This is what I use:

And this is what I do:

January 27, 2014

Staying motivated (MondayTalk #3)

Because I live in Romania and my educational system is different, I don't have finals week. Finals last 3 weeks here and an average Romanian students has about 5 exams. I myself have 7 this year.

It is so hard during this time of the year to stay motivated and study, study, study. Today I have to study for an exam that I will take in 2 days and I did nothing. Granted I have a 10 on my midterm but that is not the point. Instead of lying around all day I should have worked on something, anything productive! But no... I just sat around and watched tv series like Greek and Grimm. I imagined a lot too. I pictured myself in an Ivy League college, doing a project and loving every minute of it.

As it so happens I love doing projects, research, giving presentations, tests/exams not so much. Even the most basic exam for which I over-studied scared the crap out of me. Giving a presentation, not so much. 

But because I cannot pack up and go and should get back to my own world of studying. Before that I am going to leave you with some tips that make me keep going even when the level of boredom hit an alarming level.
  1. If you can take it no more, take a nap. 15 minutes of napping will be like a restart for the brain. When you get up, you will be energized and some of the knowledge will have steeped into your mind.
  2. Call a friend. Yes, this can be distracting but if you call someone that is motivated then he/she could help you go on with your own studies.
  3. Listen to music. I keep some music rolling on a 5% volume at all times. I don't know why but I can work longer if I have music playing in the background.
  4. Have something to drink at all times. The thirst might be an illusion that you are hungry and before you know it you are in the kitchen cooking a four star meal and neglecting the fact that the next day you have an exam.
  5. Don't stay up all night. It is not worth it (unless you actually have no choice). Your brain needs time to soak in the information and if you don't sleep for at least 5 hours you might get flustered and screw it all up.

January 24, 2014

Tea bags! (FactFriday #3)

If like me, you are a tea drinker you might experience the same syndrome: Not wanting to let go of a tea bag. Well, after some research, I have found some ways to reuse the lovely pouches of wonderful ingredients!

Here are some of the ways you can recycle the bags!:

  • Relieve tired eyes. Soak two tea bags in warm water and place them over your closed eyes for 20 minutes. After that you are as good as new! 

  • Make you hair nice and shiny! Yes you can do that with just a couple of used tea bags. Soak the used tea bags in water and give your hair a wash. Not only will it make your hair liveliness but if you have a couple of grey hairs, they will be gone!

January 22, 2014

15min leg workout (FitWednesday #3)

Some days we are all tired and cranky. Maybe it was a rough day at school or maybe you just wasn't feeling it. It is essential, especially during those days to workout at least 15-30 minutes. Not only is it beneficial for your overall health but also, working out releases endorphin(aka the happy chemical), turning that frown upside down!

January 21, 2014

Healthy vegetable soup! (RecipeTuesday #3)

So I was taking a look in my fridge and I was wondering what to have for dinner. A very good, low calorie alternative is a vegetable soup. It is wonderfully delicious and also good for digestion at night.

What you need:

What you do:

January 19, 2014

Reading. A dead sport? (MondayTalk #2)

As I curled up in bed with my current book, a thought downed on me. It was 1 AM and I was just then closing my computer and trying to sleep, even though I had to get up in 5 hours. I remember years back when I used to get in bed at a reasonable hour and read till a fell asleep. Back then I got plenty of rest and I was much more productive.

So is reading a dying sport? As technology develops more and more, people are starting to be more attracted to artificial reading mechanisms such as tablets, laptops and computers. No one wants to read a classic book. This is bad not only for our eyes but also for our sleeping schedules. Think back on all the night I thought I had insomnia...

January 17, 2014

Benefits of working out (FactFriday #2)

We all know that working out is good for you body and mind and that it gets you in shape. There are many more benefits of dedicating 30 minutes a day (at least) to doing some exercise and be active. I have listed below the top 5 benefits:

  1. Reduces stress levels. Exercise increases concentrations of norepinephrine, a chemical that can moderate the brain’s response to stress. So if you are having trouble at school or even at work, go for a run, do a 15-30 minute quick workout and feel yourself slowly relaxing.

January 15, 2014

Lazy day workout (FitWednesday #2)

We all have those day were working out is the last thing on our mind. We are tired, we are cranky, we are bored or just not feeling it. Those are the most important days TO move. We shouldn't embrace the laziness and let it ruin everything we worked for up until that point. Because some exercise is more important than none, I have made a lazy day workout!

Remember how I was talking about having that one day in which we are just not moving and grooving, and because of that we end up not working out for weeks? Well this workout is simple, quick but still will make you sweat it out.

January 14, 2014

Healthy cheese pizza( RecipeTuesday #2)

I know that I do no not like to eat a substituent pizza crap( cauliflower base and all) . The taste isn't the same and it makes no sense to eat cheese on vegetables and call it pizza.

I made this pizza for lunch the other day and I thought I would share it here. It has only natural ingredients that actually fill you up and give you energy. I two slices of it for a meal, you could it the whole thing, but remember, everything in moderation!



January 13, 2014

Finals and stress ( MondayTalk #1)

For all the students out there, I know you fell my stress and panic for the beginning of the final exams and the handing in of projects. If you live in Romania or have a similar educations system, then probably you are knee deep in test and project right about now.

I like to joke about being a professional test giver and that that is my major but on a serious note, I know how stressful this time is and not being my first rodeo, I have some tricks and tips for before final period/during so that nobody has a nervous breakdown or anything.

January 10, 2014

Fats, good or bad? (FactFriday #1)

For some years now, I have been hearing that fat is bad. And I agree to a certain degree with this. You should definitely not pour a tub of lard in your mouth, but some fats are good.

If you think about whole milk and you are under the impression that the "skinny" version is healthier, you are sorely mistaking. The milk is more processed so that the fat can be eliminated. The natural, from the cow, whole milk is just pasteurized (like in the olden times), so that all of the bad bacteria can be killed. I remember my mum buying from farmers milk and boiling it! It was so good and helped me grow and be a healthy kid (that is until my dad and I found McDonalds).

If you think about it, all foods contain some amount of fat. Our bodies know how to handle fats that come from natural places. In moderation fat:
  • is a source of energy. We store some of it so when their is a hunger, the body consumes what fat is in the body. This is why we create a deficit when we try to louse weight, so the body can use up all the fat that is stored away safely.
  • is actually an essential fatty acid. These are the very known omega 3 and 6 fatty acids that are found in fish. These help us inflammation,  mood and behavior. 
  • helps with the good functioning of our nervous system and brain. The nerve cells are actually covered in a fatty material that acts like bike oil. Actually our brain contains a lot of essential fats.
  • helps maintain healthy skin and other tissues. The cell membrane contains a bit of fat, which is perfectly acceptable. When the amount of fat in these membranes gets out of hand, that's when we become overweight. 
  • helps for steroids, which are needed for many different processes.
So all in all, fat is not that bad. But which type should we avoid at all cost? Well the saturated and trans fats are bad. They raise your cholesterol and increase the risk of heart diseases. On the other hand, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats lower your cholesterol and help fight heart disease. 

Good fats
  • Monounsaturated
  • Polyunsaturated

January 8, 2014

30 minute workout (FitWednesday #1)

So, as I promised myself, I have started working out again. The feeling is so familiar and it makes me so happy. I think the reason why I get into the state of mind where I don't want to do anything, basically is missing a day of activity(aka sitting on my bum and caching up with TV shows). Last summer I did exercises for 2 straight months, without missing a day. Then I went on holiday, missed a couple days here and there, saw that nothing happened and boom, back to the same old, same old. Laziness, procrastination, getting more and more demotivated. Fast forward start of college, homework, projects and volunteering. All that and no desire to work out.

Well no more! Since finals are coming in less than a month and I will have study time at home, I think that this is the best opportunity to eat right, work out and also study! Because of my past experience and a lot of research, i have compiled a 30 minute workout that will sure enough make anyone break a sweat. It is fun and engaging and it sure makes me want to die.

January 7, 2014

Oat muffins (RecipeTuesday #1)

As I made my way out of bed  this morning, the hunger struck me. I prepared myself a healthy breakfast with some of my favorite things. These are, I kid you not, the most delicious and filling oat muffins you could ever find. I made five and only ended up eating two. Also they go great coupled up with a strawberry tea.


For the ones how do not use the metric system, here are the measurements:
  • 2/5 cups oats 
  • 1 whole egg 
  • 2 tablespoons low fat milk 
  • 1 oz cottage cheese 
  • 4 black olives 
  • 1 oz cheese

January 6, 2014

New year, old me?

So for the past 4 years I've had my mind set on getting in shape(and not a square) and being healthy. I have had a goal weight for so long that it seems just a dream.Every God damn Sunday I tell myself that from the next day my life will turn around, and then my mom broth me a bag of chips. Not to be misunderstood, I don't look fat, but I am skinny fat. I have no muscle definition and a hole lot of flabby skin. It is annoying.