Archive for July, 2014


ingredients  1506441_10152121775739769_1913719473_n

2 T soy sauce

1 T light brown sugar

2 T red wine vinegar

3 T olive oil

4 shallots, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, minced

8 pieces of your favorite chicken pieces, skinless with bones

Salt and Pepper

Handful of fresh parsley


Preheat the oven to 4250F. In a large baking dish, combine the first 6 ingredients and toss with the chicken. Season with salt and pepper.

Roast for 30 minutes until the chicken begins to brown. Remove from the oven and baste with the marinade. Flip the pieces and bake for a another 10-15 minutes or until chicken is cooked.

Garnish with lots of fresh parsley.

NOTE: You can cook this chicken on the BBQ as well. Mix the marinade in a separate bowl. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and cook on a hot grill. When the chicken is almost done, start brushing the marinade onto the chicken. You don’t want to do this too early, because the sauce will burn.

(Adapted from a recipe found on

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Your son calls you from college. He tells you the following:

1. He decided to change his major from chemistry to philosophy.

2. He is no longer interested in being on the swim team. He wants to, instead, start intramural rugby.

3. His Buddhist girlfriend is LOVELY and he now wants to convert to Buddhism. They have been together for 3 weeks.

I don’t know about you, but my reaction would be:




 Believe it or not, I feel the same way when a client comes to Baby-Steps-to-Successme wanting to make overly ambitious lifestyle changes all at once. I’ll hear the following:

1. I know this is only our 2nd session, but I think I should come to you at least 3 times a week.

2. I decided to give up caffeine, sugar, gluten and dairy.

3. On the days that I don’t see you, I’m going to get up at 5:30 AM and start jogging for about 30 minutes.

Both scenarios are equally as ridiculous. They both involve way too much change all at once. To be successful, take teeny, tiny baby steps. Set ONE realistic, time-framed goal. (Example: Next week I’m going to go for a 15-minute walk, everyday,  after lunch.) When you accomplish that, add in another one. Use common sense so that you don’t set yourself up for failure.

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Mussels are a great source of lean protein. This recipe is 6a00e5529a039488340115708bf13e970c-800wieasy and REALLY delicious!


3 pounds mussels

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1 T unsalted butter

1 T good olive oil

1 cup chopped shallots (5 to 7 shallots)

1 ½ T minced garlic (5 to 6 cloves)

½ cup chopped canned plum tomatoes, drained (4 ounces)

½ t good saffron threads

1/3 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley

1 T fresh thyme leaves

1 cup good white wine

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


To clean the mussels, put them in a large bowl with 2 quarts of water and the flour and soak for 30 minutes, or until the mussels disgorge any sand. Drain the mussels, then remove the “beard” from each with your fingers. If they’re dirty, scrub the mussels with a brush under running water. Discard any mussels whose shells aren’t tightly shut.

In a large non-aluminum stockpot, heat the butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook for 5 minutes; then add the garlic and cook for 3 more minutes, or until the shallots are translucent. Add the tomatoes, saffron, parsley, thyme, wine, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil.

Add the mussels, stir well, then cover the pot, and cook over medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes, until all the mussels are opened (discard any that do not open). With the lid on, shake the pot once or twice to be sure the mussels don’t burn on the bottom. Pour the mussels and the sauce into a large bowl and serve hot.

(Adapted from a recipe found on

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Recently, one of my clients gained a few pounds and was tumblr_l0kn9l8D5J1qapdfko1_500not a happy camper about it. (Her words were, “I FEEL DISGUSTING!!!”) When I asked her what was going on, she responded with two words that spoke volumes: “CARELESS EATING”. I LOVE this phrase and boy, was she onto something.

Careless eating is just the opposite of Mindful Eating: It’s when you’re being reckless with food……

  • Eating when you’re not hungry
  • Eating unhealthy food that you’re not even in the mood for but do so just because it’s there.
  • Grapping junk when you had other, more healthy choices
  • Bingeing because you’re frustrated
  • Drinking way too much (ouch!)

In a nutshell, careless eating is when you feel out of control. It’s haphazard, chaotic and destructive.

To get out of this mess, just ask yourself two quick questions when you’re about to eat:




Believe it or not, those two questions will get you focused and back on track.

Ditch the CARELESS EATING–you’ll feel so much better in no time.  (By the way…….my client did and felt better in ONE day!)

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If you love fish, MAKE THIS! If you’re not 100% a fish lover, this is the recipe to try!


1 cup chopped peeled peach

3/4 cup quartered cherry tomatoes

1/4 cup thinly vertically sliced red onion

3 tablespoons small fresh mint leaves

3 tablespoons small fresh basil leaves

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon honey

1 jalapeño pepper, thinly sliced (optional)

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

4 (6-ounce) wild salmon fillets

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Cooking spray


Preheat grill to high heat.

Combine the first 8 ingredients in a bowl; add jalapeño, if desired. Sprinkle the mixture with 1/4 teaspoon of salt; toss gently. Sprinkle fillets evenly with remaining 1/4 teaspoon of salt and black pepper. Place the fillets on a grill rack coated with cooking spray, and grill for 10 minutes or until desired degree of doneness, turning after 5 minutes. Serve with the salsa.

(Adapted from a recipe found on Cooking Light, 2011 via

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What a wonderful summer salad using fresh zucchini. It’s the first time I’ve eaten zucchini raw…….what a delicious surprise! Must try this one!

ingredients Zucchini1

2 zucchini, washed, dried and ends trimmed

1 T fresh thyme, chopped

1 T fresh oregano, chopped

1 large lemon, zested and juiced

2 T extra-virgin olive oil

1 T Dijon mustard

Salt and coarsely ground black pepper

Parmesan shards, to taste


Cut the zucchini into ribbons using a vegetable peeler. Hold the zucchini firmly at the tip and draw the peeler down. Transfer the ribbons to a large bowl.

Add the thyme and oregano to the zucchini ribbons; toss to combine. Add the lemon zest and juice; toss to combine.

In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil with the mustard. Gradually add the olive oil mixture to the zucchini and toss until the salad is well dressed.

Season the salad with salt and pepper. Serve topped with shards of Parmesan.

(Adapted from a recipe found on



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I’ve learned that nutritional counseling is not really counseling…….the sessions turn into NUTRITION NEGOTIATIONS. (And yes, I often feel like a killjoy.) Boy, have I had some interesting food “discussions” with my clients. Check out these scenarios and you will see the room for debate….

THE COFFEE SITUATION 3e3f6568887d4e4babe7abf70900387c

ME: So what do you think is stopping your weight loss?

CLIENT: No idea, the only thing I added was getting a coffee at Starbucks.

ME: A coffee? You mean a plain cup of coffee or an iced coffee?

CLIENT: No……I get a Carmel Latte but don’t get the big size.

ME: What size do you get, the 8-ounce size or the 12-ounce?

CLIENT: I get the grande.

ME: Ok……so the grande is 16-ounces and 250 calories.

MY TAKE: This is not coffee……this is SUGAR, fat and empty calories.

CLIENT’S TAKE: Just having a cup of coffee at Starbucks, no big deal.


ME: So what’s been happening with your eating this week?

CLIENT: I started making healthy smoothies for breakfast—bought a smoothie maker.

ME: Great! What are you putting in them?

CLIENT: Greek yogurt, a cup of blueberries, and small handful of almonds.

ME: Perfect, what a healthy breakfast!

CLIENT: Yes, and I have that with my cereal every morning.

MY TAKE: The smoothie is complete breakfast. Having it WITH cereal is like eating TWO breakfasts.

CLIENT’S TAKE: So glad I started eating a healthier breakfast.


CLIENT: You’ll be so happy……I stopped eating ice cream and started eating frozen yogurt.

ME: Great! What kind of frozen yogurt?

CLIENT: I go to the self-serve yogurt places and eat ½ cup.

ME: Don’t you find that so hard to do because they give you such a big cup? When you put ½ cup in a 16-ounce cup, it looks like nothing.

CLIENT: Oh…….I didn’t know that……..I meant I was putting in ½ of the cup that they give me.

MY TAKE: Oh boy……..this client is eating TOO much frozen yogurt.

CLIENT’S TAKE: It’s a good thing I switched from ice-cream to yogurt so I can save calories.

BOTTOM LINE: Don’t drink your calories. Healthy food can be caloric. Portion size is crucial. Keep these in mind when you’re trying to lose weight. Maybe then I won’t have to negotiate so hard?

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