Dieting tips you don't find in diet books:
1. The calories don't count if you're standing. If you eat sitting down, you're closer to the floor, hence gravity pulls those calories straight to your hips and thighs. Stand up and the calories slide straight down and off.
2. The calories don't count if you eat from the container. Never, ever plate your food. That's where the calorie compounding occurs. Take bites straight from the container. Bonus points if you don't finish the whole thing and put it back in the refrigerator (or freezer, if you're eating ice cream).
3. If you eat from the container while standing, you're actually burning calories. Eating standing up and pacing is equivalent to a 20 minute aerobic workout.
3. The calories don't count if you eat off someone else's plate. That's just tasting or sharing, so those calories totally don't count.
4. Tidying calories don't count. If you wipe up stray frosting or straighten the edge on a pie, a pan of fudge, or a cake, that doesn't count.
4. If you take a chocolate from an assortment and don't like the one you get, those calories don't count. It's just not fair that you should pay the freight for a pineapple cream when you were thinking it was maple cream. And it would be gross to spit it out. So it's only good manners to eat it. And having the discipline to practice good manners with a mouthful of pineapple cream burns calories. So you're almost at a negative calorie situation.
5. Grapefruit has the effect of negating calories, so whatever you eat at the same time as a grapefruit doesn't count. The same for Diet Coke.
6. Food eaten in the car doesn't count. You know you're not really enjoying it.
8. Broken food has no calories. The half a cookie left on a plate is calorie free, as is the chip shards in the bottom of the potato chip bag.
There, hopefully those tips will help. And if you've still got some room after all that dieting, you might try these muffins. They're low calorie and low fat, but I like them anyway. They are deliciously moist, flavorful, with the added zip of cranberries. The only problem is eating just one. Well, if you're standing up, you could probably handle two.
adapted from Cooking Light magazine
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 Tbsp canola oil
1 large egg
2/3 cup Craisins, sweetened dried cranberries
1- Preheat oven to 375 deg. F.
2 - Place 12 paper muffin cup liners in muffin cups; coat liners with cooking spray. I used my new silicone cupcake holders on a baking tray, giving each a hit of cooking spray. They released beautifully.
3 - Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking soda, and next 5 ingredients (through cloves); stir well with whisk and set aside.
4 - Combine granulated sugar and next 5 ingredients (through egg) in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 3 minutes). Add flour mixture to sugar mixture; beat at low speed just until combined. Fold in the cranberries.
5 - Spoon batter into prepared cups. Bake at 375 deg. F. for 25 minutes or until muffins spring back when touched lightly in center. Remove muffins from pan immediately; place on a wire rack.
Makes 1 dozen muffins, but my muffin cups overflowed when I made just 12, so when I made this recipe again and doubled it, I had 3 extra muffins (27 total when doubled).
~ 199 calories, 3.2 g. fat, 2.8 g protein, 1.5 g fiber 1.3 g iron, and 38 mg calcium. (There, don't you feel virtuous?)
* Here's the part where Grammar Girl goes on a rant. "Healthy" is an adjective. It is not a person, place or thing. You cannot eat Healthy, unless you named your pet goat Healthy and are now going to grill her. Healthily is an adverb, modifying a verb. So you can you use that word to describe the way you eat. If Grammar Girl sees another magazine article about "eating healthy" she will go round the bend and take her side-kick, Adverb Boy, and go slap someone upside the head with a healthy brick of tofu. Please don't force an adjective to do the heavy lifting that an adverb was made for!