Archive for the ‘Nutritional IQ’

AVOID HALLOWEEN HANGOVER: Is Your Favorite Candy a Trick or a Smart Treat?

Whether you’re planning a party, handing out goodies, or trying to resist the candy-filled bucket that your BFB’s mom so sweetly mailed him, Halloween treats are everywhere. Check out the list of usual suspects below and rate them from the best to worst. (It’s harder than you think!)candycorn

A. A handful of candy corn
B. A packet of Fun-Sized M&M’s
C. A packet of Fun-Sized Skittles
D. A packed of Fun-Sized Reese’s Pieces
E. A Tootsie Pop
F. A Fun-Sized Milky Way
G. A Fun-Sized Butterfinger

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YBFB SPAGHETTI SAUCE REPORT: Read Ingredients to Be the Master of Your Marinara

ragu_light_no_sugar_added_tomato_and_basilBefore you whip up your next Italian masterpiece, make sure to read the nutrition label on that marinara. Sauces can be filled with un-touched tomatoes and fresh basil, or they can filled with not-so-good-for-you things like corn syrup and added sugar—some pack as much sugar as a half-can of Coke. Of course, sauces labeled “low carb” or “no sugar added” are often sweetened with artificial sweeteners like sucralose (Splenda), which have been shown to up your chance of weight gain.

So before you twist the top off another bottle, flip it around and check out the ingredient list. In general, a good store-bought tomato sauce should only have ingredients you can recognize and pronounce—i.e., tomatoes, basil, olive oil, etc., the shorter the laundry list of ingredients, the better—and should never, ever say “corn syrup or sugar” or start with an ingredient other than tomatoes. In general, reach for sauces that are no more than 70 calories per half cup.

Want to make your red-sauce dishes healthier? Check out this quick roundup. Continue Reading →

YBFB COUPLE QUIZ: After-Dinner Drinks at Starbucks

pumpkin_latte_nutritionIt’s a beautiful, cool fall night. You and your sweetie have just ended another fun dinner date and in preparation to stay awake for the late-night movie, trod down to Starbucks. As you stand before the bubbly, over-caffeinated barista, you know the best thing for you is the basic coffee of the week, but the sweet smell of lattes quickly erases the memory of your pasta dinner. Your mind is made up. You’re gonna order one … but which is your best bet?

THE CHALLENGE: List these delicious coffee drinks in order from best to worst by calorie count—no cheating!— and see who does better, you or your BFB! (Note: All calorie counts are for 16 ounce-coffees, made with 2% milk, and include whipped cream if offered.)

THE PRIZE: Superior knowledge and, of course, bragging rights—it’s harder than it seems!

A. Caffè Mocha
B. Cappuccino
C. Pumpkin Spice Latte
D. Cinnamon Dolce Latte
E. Caramel Macchiato
F. Cafe Latte

See how you did! Continue Reading →

BFB BEER REPORT: Sip Slower to Keep Your Oktoberfest From Adding Pounds

1355Pumpkins and weather cool enough for layering might be what you look forward to each fall, but for many BFBs, it’s football and the return of their favorite beer—Oktoberfest. Not only are these varieties popping up on bar menus, but there are also the parties and fests themselves.

If you can’t help but swap out your regular lite order for a sweet, fall-filled glass, you’re not alone. Just keep in mind that, on average, Oktoberfests run about 80 to 100+ calories more per bottle than calorie-conscious beers like Miller Lite (96 calories per 12-ounce bottle).

To keep calories in check, tip back half the number of glasses that you usually would when you’re drinking. Luckily, thanks to the full-bodied nature of these autumn beers, sipping is the best way to enjoy them anyway.

Check out the calories of some of the most popular Oktoberfest brews below. Continue Reading →