Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Science Says...

Have I mentioned I'm getting married in two months? Oy vey - for anyone getting ready to tie the knot, here's a tip for you...elope! We let our families bully us into a wedding and, as a result, we'll be in debt for years to pay off all those over-priced vendor fees.

In addition to the upcoming nuptials, I've also been dealing with a new job. Between all of that stress, I've had a hard time exercising and an even harder time cooking. Fortunately, between low-cal microwave meals and sugar-free dishes, I've been able to maintain my weight. 

Speaking of sugar-free, a new study found the use of low-cal sweeteners resulted in body weight reductions. This is the latest research to support those findings - and they also determined that the use of products containing low-cal sweeteners do not lead to weight gain or cravings. For the meta-analysis study, researchers reviewed 35 years’ worth of independent studies on the relationship between low-calorie sweeteners and weight status. 

“Based on the gold standard study design in medical research — the randomized controlled trial — the results show that using low-calorie sweeteners resulted in statistically significant reductions in body weight, BMI, fat mass, and waist circumference,” said Dr. Vanessa Perez, one of the researchers. With recent headlines stirring debate around the benefits of sweetener alternatives, Perez added the data confirms that using low-calorie sweeteners “does not cause weight gain and may be a useful tool in helping people comply with weight loss and weight management plans.” 

So take that naysayers! The proof is in the science - and the extensive body of research that backs low-cal, sugar-free products for weight loss efforts. I'll take my cues from the researchers, as well as healthcare organizations like the American Diabetes Association and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, who support the use of low-calorie sweeteners as tools in weight and diabetes management. Until this research is proven otherwise, you'll have to pry the Diet Coke out of my cold dead hands. 

Rant over, stepping off my soapbox. Now back to wedding planning - joy! 

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Butterscotch Badness...or should I say, goodness?

So I've been on a bit of an ice cream and gelado kick lately. What can I say? 'Tis the season. When the weather warms up, my icy sweet tooth comes out. So last night, after a particularly grueling round of hot yoga, we hit a local ice cream shop for shakes. I got a butterscotch one. And holy smokes, was it dee-lish!

But it seems I celebrated a day or two too early. I checked my trusty food holiday calendar (what? don't judge me! I like to eat!) today and guess what I discovered? Tomorrow is National Butterscotch Brownie Day. Huzzah!

In honor of this special occasion, and beecause I love you'se guys so much, I dug up a Splenda-sweetened butterscotch brownie recipe. Alas, I will not be able to indulge in the sweet treat tomorrow. Instead, I will be drinking cheap beer and possibly snarfig down a hot dog - or maybe just some peanuts - at Turner Field. My beloved (and as per usual, awful) Cubbies are in town, so I'm hitting enemy territory to see the game. I plan to workout in the morning and snack on some celery, carrots and hummus beforehand so I don't eat everything in sight when I get to the stadium. Wish me - and the Cubs - a little luck.

Photo courtesy of Mike Froese via freeimages.