Healthy is Beautiful

Biggest Loser in Trouble: How is That a Surprise?

I’m a sucker for some good inspiration. I used to watch The Biggest Loser while eating light ice cream and thinking “wow I don’t have that much to lose, I can do this.” Or “WOW that is an insane story, my life’s not too bad.” I also used to watch Intervention while drinking. I know, I’m twisted.

The Biggest Loser’s changed hundreds of lives, plus I’m sure inspired thousands more. But lately it’s come under criticism, and I hate to be the Negative Nellie here, but WHY IS ANYONE SURPRISED?

It can’t be healthy to lose 100 pounds in six weeks. It just can’t. They might be doing drugs? They might be working out six hours a day and only eating 1,200 calories a day? Nothing here surprises me.

The former contestants who are suing are just ridiculous. YOU signed up for the show. YOU were responsible for reading the fine print, for knowing what you agreed to before you participated. And YOU reverted to bad habits. The show is a launching pad and a great help, but one’s own personal health is his or her responsibility, no one else’s. They remind me of lottery winners who blow their fortunes and then blame the lottery for ruining their lives. It’s your own fault if life hands you lemons and you throw them at a wall instead of making lemonade.

So the drugs … did they force feed them to you? You could’ve said no. Why wait until now to bring it up? It seems like people are willing to compromise their morals when it’s benefiting them, but once life’s not so peachy anymore, let’s take it out on the show.

And before you get on me about all the articles about how the extreme dieting, exercise and weight loss killed their metabolisms … I’ve read those articles too. It seems like a lot of hype. If you’re super extreming it, and go home and back to higher calories and old ways, OF COURSE you’re going to mess your metabolism up.

I also read the claim about contestants being taken to the hospital. Years of neglect + sudden onset of extreme exertion = physical distress. It’s bound to happen.

Do I still like The Biggest Loser? Yes. But I do think the standards and methods are quite extreme. I much prefer the Powells’ approach of helping someone change their life over the course of a year; it’s healthier and more sustainable. Still, regardless of how you lose weight, it’s your choice. You CAN say no. Don’t blame someone else because you said yes.

 

Husker Punch

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I apologize in advance for the pun, but this Husker Punch was a major touchdown at the party I took to last week. Whether you like the Huskers or you don’t, this punch is winner. It’s easy to make, and sweet but not too sweet. Using lighter versions of the punch and soda helped with that. Plus, with some fruit in there, you almost feel like you’re hitting all the food groups.

lpobeauty.comThe fun thing about this is you can do however you want. If you want more fruit, more alcohol or more juice, play with the ratios. If you want more sugar, go with the full versions of Sprite and Hawaiian Punch. If you like 7 N Up or Sierra Mist better than Sprite, go for it. You could also do fresh pineapple … I was just being cheap since it soaks in alkie anyway 🙂

This recipe is also scaleable. Just follow these guidelines and you can make anything from 1 glass to 100 gallons (ok that’s extreme, but who knows, maybe you’re having a frat party.)

  • 1 part strawberries
  • 1 part oranges
  • 2 parts pineapple
  • 2 parts pineapple rum
  • 2 parts orange vodka
  • 4 parts punch

One final tip – be careful when stirring … the Sprite could cause a bubble over.

Awesome Smoothies in Omaha, and Your Chance to Try Them!

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And the winner of the $25 Smoothie King gift card is Julie Otto Schmitz of Family Fun in Omaha!

 

I love smoothies. Almost as much as I love cheese. And THAT is some serious love. But I’ve always been disappointed with smoothies in Omaha. Too much ice, heavy syrup, crappy ingredients, etc. I got spoiled by going to school in Cali for a year where we had a Jamba Juice ON campus. Well guess what, that’s all changed with the arrival of Smoothie King. Good Lord am I happy!

IMG_3741[1]So first let’s address the elephant in the room. Are they as tasty as Jamba Juice? Hell yes. BUT way healthier. As a vegetarian who’s losing weight, seeing that some of them have up to 50 g of protein makes me mucho happy. PLUS a drive thru! Wha whaattttttt??!?!?!

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Smoothie King Omaha drive thru (that’s my pretty Jeep Gypsy in the background)

I got to try out Smoothie King with some fellow Omaha bloggers. It’s at 90th and center, across from the Hy-Vee on the end of the plaza where Senor Matias used to be (I totally miss that place, can you tell?)

I was in love with everything I tried. The Hulk is for adding weight, so it has ice cream, but it was so good. I’m really into the veggie blends; they are a great, tasty way to get your veg in. I couldn’t even taste the carrot in the berry carrot one I tried.

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Wellness is really at the heart of the whole operation. They have healthy snacks too, like protein cookies!

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I was excited to learn they were founded in New Orleans, since my brother is moving there in the fall. I may be sneaking in some smoothies when I visit him.

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I definitely see myself spending a lot of time at 90th and Center in coming months. Speaking of which, if you download the Smoothie King app, you accumulate points toward free smoothies for everything you purchase. Score!!!

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Ok but first, here’s a chance to try out Smoothie King for free. I can’t make any promises, but if you don’t like it, I’m pretty sure you’re not human!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tom + Chee: America’s Freshest Franchise – win FREE food!

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Ok, so when Tom + Chee announced it was opening in Omaha, I was excited. I mean grilled cheese and soup, how can you go wrong? Plus apparently there was a lot of hype because everyone and their mom (except me) saw the company founders on Shark Tank. But there was so much didn’t know that made it 10 times more amazing:

  • Everything is fresh – no blenders, no freezers – everything down to the salad dressings and meat rubs are made from scratch Same category but deserves its own nod – made from scratch, made to order MAC and CHEESE (my fave food if you couldn’t tell)
  • HEALTHY options – yep, surprise!
  • Gluten free and vegan options
  • TONS of vegetarian options
  • NO sugar added to the soups
  • TONS of options, including build your own
  • Crazy, amazing doughnuts that are NOT fried
  • Off the menu, daily special options you can find in their Facebook updates
  • The sandwiches are super filling, which I just didn’t expect, as are the awesome entrée salads

It’s off 145th and Maple, so personally for me, that a long drive but WORTH it. We got to try TONS of stuff, so get ready for some food porn! IMG_3668[1]IMG_3673[1]IMG_3667[1]IMG_3681[1] IMG_3674[1] IMG_3682[1]Now it’s your a turn for a shot at enjoying the goodness – take a friend or go twice by yourself! The winner will receive soup, grilled cheese and deluxe dessert doughnuts (trust me whatever you’re expecting, they’re even better)! a Rafflecopter giveaway

A Unique Dining Experience: Heritage Omaha

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I was provided a complimentary experience at Heritage Food and Wine for my honest review of the restaurant. I was provided with free food and drink, but all opinions are my own.

I love trying all kinds of food, ok let’s be honest all non-meat kinds of food. So when I was invited to the soft opening of Heritage Food and Wine, I was excited to learn that it was family style. The only family style restaurant I had been to previously was a large chain that left Omaha years ago. The portions were huge, and it was more about the cheesy experience.

Heritage was completely different. They explained to us that the concept revolves around abandoning specific courses and experiencing all kinds of food at the same time. The  food was excellent – fresh ingredients, awesome preparation, and top notch touches like homemade sweet ricotta on the cheese plate. Plates were shareable, but not obnoxious in size.

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Location and Ambiance

Heritage is located in downtown Omaha, so of course parking can be tricky but it’s worth it because you’re literally close to everything is you want to do something else afterward. (I did just learn though, that they have valet parking through the hotel entrance, which is sweet). I really wasn’t sure what to expect, but I really liked it. The staff was friendly, not pretentious. With a little more upscale food, I was afraid it would be stuffy, but it wasn’t at all. The place was humming with excitement, which I love because I am loud person and super quiet places kind of bug me.

Everything was clean and cohesive, down the logos in the fun lamps on the ceiling.

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 Drinks
It was fun to experience Heritage’s unique cocktails. I don’t ever use this word, but I really would call their bartenders mixologists. I asked for “something fruity with rum” and it was magical. They used bitters and other fun ingredients I’d never even heard of, let alone tried. They even made some amazing virgin concoctions for a member of our group who is expecting.

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Veggies
As a vegetarian, there were a lot of options for me. And, if like me you’re pursuing a healthier diet, there are lots of good options as well. However, the biscuits and sweet potatoes with white chocolate were amaaaaazing.

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Who knew pickled veggies could be so amazing?

Ok and I’m embarrassed to admit this one – I’d never tried parsnips before. Turns out I love them!IMG_3203[1]Meat
And for my carnivorous friends, I was told the meat was fantastic too (duck and fried chicken pictured below).

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