Wednesday, September 10, 2014

So you've decided to lose weight...

Melissa's Tip of the Week is designed to help you and your family live happier, healthier lives, through exercise and healthy eating.
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So you've decided to lose weight...

Let's take a quick look at the differences between "weight loss", and "fat loss".  

Now that you've decided to take action, allow me to congratulate you!  Many people start down this road, only to find themselves beginning again and again.  Why?  Because they are approaching the process with the wrong paradigm.  We aren't actually trying to lose "weight", what we really want is to lose fat--stored body fat that is taking up extra room, and is damaging your health.

Why is the beginning assumption important?  If we begin with the premise that we are losing weight, we are willing to do almost anything to accomplish this, including drastic diets like the whole HCG craze, or juice fasting.  And while those will help you lose weight, the weight you are losing will be comprised of muscle and fluid, as well as some fat.  This is problematic, as your basal metabolic rate is directly tied to your muscles and active tissues.  So if you are losing muscle, you are losing the means by which to burn the fat in the future, setting you up for future weight gain, and yo-yoing!

So, rather than getting on that roller coaster (or if you're on it and you want OFF), make a healthier plan beginning with fat loss as your goal.  That means taking measurements and body fat percentages, rather than looking at a scale, in order to track true fat loss.  It also means healthy whole foods and limiting sweets as well as moving regularly, but not at the expense of your health.  You'd be surprised how much you can eat if you focus your efforts on fruits and vegetables first, with the other items like meat as your side dish, rather than the main course.

If you are ready to make a real change, call me--I'm here to help.  


  • 12 - 14 - inch Whole Wheat Pizza Dough (see Recipe Center) or desired pizza crust (GF crust is available at your local grocer)
  • 1/3 cup Kale Pesto (recipe follows) or purchased basil pesto 
  • cup shredded mozzarella cheese (4 ounces)
  • medium fresh garden heirloom tomatoes, such as Cherokee Purples, green zebras, and/or Marvel Stripe, or desired red or yellow tomatoes, cored and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices or 1 cup mixed baby tomatoes, such as sungolds, yellow pear, and/or sweet 100s, halved
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon pizza seasoning 


  1. Bake whole wheat crust in 450 degree F oven 7 to 9 minutes or until light brown; remove from oven. (Or grill as directed in crust recipe.)
  2. Spread Kale Pesto evenly over crust. Sprinkle with cheese. Arrange tomato slices over cheese. Sprinkle with pizza seasoning.
  3. Bake about 8 to 10 minutes more or until heated through and crust bottom is crisp and brown. (Or grill as directed.) Remove from oven. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Cut into wedges to serve. Makes one 13- to 15-inch pizza (four 2-wedge servings).


  • * If you like, substitute 2 cups firmly packed fresh basil leaves, torn fresh arugula or spinach leaves with stems removed for the kale.

Kale Pesto


  • pound fresh kale
  • cups water
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
  • large cloves garlic, quartered
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup olive oil or vegetable oil


  1. Using 1 pound fresh kale, remove leaves off stems; rinse leaves. In a Dutch oven, bring water to boiling. Drop leaves into water and cook, uncovered, for 3 to 5 minutes or until tender. Rinse leaves under cold running water; drain well. Wrap leaves in several layers of paper towel or clean kitchen towel and squeeze out excess moisture. Coarsely chop and measure for 2 cups.
  2. In a food processor or blender, combine the chopped kale, freshly grated Parmesan cheese, walnuts, garlic, and salt. Cover and process or blend with several on/off turns until a paste forms, stopping the machine several times and scraping the sides. With the machine running slowly, gradually add olive oil and process or blend to the consistency of soft butter. If you're not serving the pesto immediately, divide it into five 1/3-cup portions. Place each portion in a small airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Makes 1-3/4 cups.

nutrition facts

(Suncrest Gardens Farm's Pesto Pizza)
Servings Per Recipe 4, Niacin (mg) 3, Pyridoxine (Vit. B6) (mg) 0, Folate (µg) 77, vit. A (IU) 1749, vit. C (mg) 15, Thiamin (mg) 0, Riboflavin (mg) 0, Fat, total (g) 22, iron (mg) 2, fiber (g) 4, carb. (g) 39, sugar (g) 3, Cobalamin (Vit. B12) (µg) 0, pro. (g) 15, cal. (kcal) 398, calcium (mg) 263, Polyunsaturated fat (g) 3, Monosaturated fat (g) 11, sat. fat (g) 6, sodium (mg) 434, chol. (mg) 34, Potassium (mg) 294

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