Nutrition Wizard Plus

Nutrition Wizard Plus

This is an online food calculator that is able to analyze a list of ingredients, then tells you the nutritional contents for more than 30 nutrients (calories, fat, carbs, etc.)

There are quite a few other applications I have come across in the past that can do this, though many required a series of annoying drop down menus, compared to just a blank box you can copy and paste into, this one also tells you if the recipe is appropriate for over 20 major diets (vegan, paleo, gliten-free, etc.).

You have the option to log in with your email/pswd, or to connect it to FB (which I LOVE since I have a hard time remembering user/pswd combos to sites, even those I use all the time). You can also download their Apple or Android app for your SmartPhone.

I find a lot of my recipes online, so it was very convenient to just copy the recipe I found from the website, and paste it into the large box. click “Analyze” and find your results. I thought this was very helpful for recipes where I was changing the ingredients for those I had in my home and could still discover how many calories were in my meal per serving. You can also change the serving size, since we all know sometimes one “serving” is barely a snack often.

Agave pudding 1

All the nutritional information is personalized, giving you the recommended daily intakes of nutrients based on what you input as your age, gender, height, weight and activity level. You can save the recipes to tweak them later or you can export the data and use it to track calories or nutrient intake. The site also lets you save it there.

Another cool feature I love is the the Find Recipes option.

refine research

You can customize your search to find exactly what you want, then there is a huge selection shown, depending on your parameters. So if you are stuck with what to make, don’t look any farther than the tool that will help you make healthy choices.

I used the above avocado recipe that I’ve made before, to see if it was actually healthy…. Here were my results (TIP – if you cannot see any of my pictures, clicking them will make them full screen).

Agave pudding facts

If you do not like seeing it this way, you have the choice to look at it the same way you would on a pre-packaged box like this:

Agave pudding label

The cost to use the Nutrition Wizard Plus is $5.95 a month (which allows you to save the recipes). Their basic version (cannot save or export) is $2.95 a month.

UPDATE: the site is now showing their price as 11.95/month. They DO have a FREE TRIAL for 14 days however that you can use to check it out before you buy!

Here is the link to their site: https://www.edamam.com/website/wizard.jsp

I was sent a 3 month subscription free of charge in exchange for an honest review.

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Vegetarian Weight Loss

I received a copy of this eBook free of charge in exchange for an honest review.

I have for you, another review for a vegetarian eBook is divided into the sections sections:

Introduction –“Vegetarians will avoid meat, game, fish, poultry and generally all meat by products such as animal fats and gelatin, which is found in a surprising amount of food. They will eat a lot of fruit, vegetables, grains, beans nuts and seeds as well as meat substitutes such as tofu.”

There are Fruitarians (avoids all animal products and only eats raw foods), Vegans (no animal foods or by-products), Lacto-vegetarian (dairy without eggs), Lacto-ovo-vegetarian (eats dairy and egg) and semi (eats fish/chicken, but no red meat).

This section also includes how being a vegetarian can help you to lose weight, health benefits, foods to eat or avoid as well as sources of vitamins and proteins.

They give really great tips in here such as being cautious of restaurant soups which may use beef/chicken stock (and are often high in sodium, especially if package made) or salad dressings (built on bacon fat or may contain anchovies such as in Caesar dressings). How strict a vegetarian you would like to be is up to you!

Vegetarian Weight Loss Recipes
Breakfasts – with Soy Pocket Eggs, Avocado Banana Smoothie, Frittatas, Coconut Chia Pudding, Muffins, and more.

Lunches – with recipes such as Salads, Cauliflower Patties, wraps, soups and stews, chili, and much more.

Click on the photos to view them larger, this is one recipe I would love to try, there are SO many I cannot wait to make!!!

Spices Cauliflower Patties 1 of 2

Spices Cauliflower Patties 2 of 2

Dinners – with Lasagna, Quinoa Stuffed Squash, different patties you can make to mock burgers, tofu curry, sweet potato pasta, and more!

Conclusion – Why microwaving food is bad for you (strips nutrients and molecularly changes your food to name a couple), in addition to tips on how to successfully lose weight through exercise, transitioning to the vegetarian diet, eating out.

8 oz. milk – 8g protein
3 oz. tofu – 15g protein
8 oz. yogurt – 8g protein
3 oz. cheese – 21g protein
2 Tbsps. peanut butter – 8g protein

For the most part every ingredient would be VERY easy to find. I found the formatting to be very good on the kindle cloud reader, though there was often large spaces or gaps when reading it on my Smartphone app, but I do not think that is the authors fault. I found it best formatted one a 3/4 screen so that only one page was visible (rather than two full screened), but you do have the option to view on your phone in the kitchen, which I like since the laptop dies to fast!

They give a TON of really helpful ideas and tips. Out of all the cookbooks I’ve reviewed so far, this one is the best. There are so many recipes that I WANT to make for myself and my family, even though I am not a vegetarian.

Again there are many full colour photos which make your mouth water just looking at them. I’ve not had the time to make any of these recipes as of yet since I’ve returned to work and Little Man is in day care. I give HUGE respect to anyone else working with young children. I so wish that I could have stayed at home longer with him, but am enjoying being back to teaching as well!

See you on the next review!!!

Vita Pure Digestive Enzymes

Digestive Enzymes

Have ever eaten an amazing meal, only to later have heartburn, gas, indigestion, regurgitation, bloating, burping, bowel problems, weight gain and/or acid reflux. If you have, then it’s possible you are one of many people who require digestive enzymes. There can be many other reasons to have these symptoms, but they can also be caused when your pancreas cannot create enough digestive enzymes in your stomach to digest food and absorb the nutrients you’ve eaten. This results in undigested food in your intestines, which ferment and cause the above symptoms and many other health related problems.

According to this products website and Amazon listing

The top 4 Benefits of their Digestive Enzymes include:
Helps to digest your food better – fats, carbohydrates & proteins.
Improves your ability to absorb critical nutrients.
Decreases bloating, occasional constipation & indigestion.
Pancreatic enzymes are beneficial for pancreas support & pancreas cleanse.

The Vita Pure Products Advantages:

  • Safe & Pure Digestive Enzymes (Safety and purity of our products are very important to us at Vita Pure Products.
  • It is made in the U.S.
  • Produced in a High – Quality Certified GMP facility to ensure the safety for you and your family.

Additionally, when you purchase this product, you will receive a free bonus report on the Top 4 Foods You Need to Avoid If You Have Digestive Problems.

Now I have only just started experiencing these types of symptoms, but my mom has been suffering for years, especially if she eats pork. It will always repeat on her, and she feels ill after eating it. Since my mom has had past experiences with various digestive enzymes, I asked her to try them and let me know what she thought.

She was taking these every day, and noticed they do definitely help with digesting the food. She noticed that with taking these enzymes (especially when eating protein based meals) that her bowel movements were softer and more consistent than when not taking enzymes to help her digest the protein. She attributes this solely to taking the enzymes and the food being better broken down, digested and absorbed. She also mentioned that she needed to take two capsules for it to work for her. She is still finding some trouble when eating pork, having light regurgitation, though much less than if she hadn’t taken anything at all. However, she has enzymes at home that are specifically tailored to digesting meat, and those work much better for her when consuming pork products.

The Vita Pure Enzymes contains Protease, Amylase & Lipase enzymes (which are naturally occurring digestive enzymes that makes it easier to digest these foods but also improves the body’s ability to absorb crucial nutrients). The other enzymes my mom normally uses to specifically help digest pork also contains Peptidase FP (from Aspergilus oryzae) and Invertase (from Saccharomyces cerevisiae). This may be why her other enzymes work better for her when consuming pork compared to the general Vita Pure Enzymes.

One thing she did mention, is that with Canadian product standards, they have to not only list ingredients but her enzyme bottle also states the amount of each enzyme contained in one capsule. It is unfortunate that the product I am reviewing did not state amounts, as we could not then compare ingredient quantities. She continued that there are very minimal instructions on the Vita Pure Enzymes bottle: “1-2 caps before each meal, or as directed by a health care professional.”

Her regular Canadian enzymes bottle has much clearer and descriptive directions: “Take one capsule with water at the beginning of each meal as needed (or open capsule and sprinkle over food that is not hot). If meal is large or unusually high in fat or protein, a second capsule may be taken at end of meal.”

In conclusion, she would recommend the Vita Pure Enzymes for anyone suffering from minor to moderate digestive issues. They work well as a general enzyme to aid in digestion for my mom. She also wanted to add “but what works or doesn’t work for me might be different for others.” Everyone digests foods different, dairy bothers me, but not my mom. Mom is bothered by pork, I love it and could eat it for days on end.

If you would like to try this natural digestive enzyme to help you absorb your foods better you can have 15% Off. Here’s the Amazon Promo Code: DENT1515 which expires April 30, 2015. CLICK Here for their listing.

I received this free of charge in exchange for an honest review

Clean Eating!? Does that mean washing my food?

I am in the middle of reading a book called Clean Food Diet to review, but first I thought my readers might ponder what the heck is all this “clean eating” is that people are raving about. Groups on Facebook have been popping up everywhere posting “Clean Eating” recipes, I’m even in one, but after reading the beginning of this book I realized it was a much more than just trying to eat healthier.

The Clean Eating Diet book first talks a little about this conundrum before getting to the recipes, defining it as a LIFESTYLE and not a “diet”. It’s the idea of knowing where your food comes from and what’s in it.

Simply put, clean eating is avoiding processed foods – AKA anything from a can or box, white flour (and all the yummy pastries and things made with white flour) and ingredients you cannot identify. Processed foods include things like bacon, wieners, pasta sauce, and anything “instant”.

What’s the problem with these foods? Surely they are safe to eat right? They have been processed to the point where many of nutrients have been destroyed; then preservatives and other chemicals are added to make it last longer, look “better” (think red food colouring in our meat!), improve taste, and make it addictive, etcetera.

Okay so why the heck do we eat thee foods!? They are usually faster and sometimes even cheaper because they’ve been mass produced. We have gotten away from the home cooked family meals for speed and convenience, but our health is suffering because of this modern trend. Diabetes, obesity and many other  health concerns are on the rise, largely because of the “American” diet (among other reasons).

Sooo – once we remove all the “bad” foods, what the heck is left to eat?

More than you might imagine….

  • Whole foods – fresh fruits and veggies eaten raw (more nutrients in them).
  • Cooking with whole grains such as Quinoa, bran, bulgur, excreta, rather than processed and refined ones like white, bleached, flour.
  • Canned foods are actually okay, but you’re looking for the least amount of ingredients, especially look at organic ones. Also included are any foods where you can read the ingredients and actually pronounce each one (within reason) AND know what they are!
  • Dairy products that are hormone-free, from a safe source and are also low in fat.
  • Healthy sweeteners, used sparingly, such as honey or agave
  • Healthy fats such as coconut, avocado and olive oil; which can be used to not only cook with but can also be eaten raw.
  • Also mentioned are dried fruits, farm eggs, nuts and seeds

To truly eat clean, you’d need to make your own meals at home, or else you have NO IDEA what’s really in your food, be it from a restaurant or ready-made package with weird ingredients.

The book also mentions removing any carbonated beverages (pop/soda) from your diet (and I’m assuming alcohol too), being sure to consume 2 litres of water a day to keep well hydrated! Clean cooking also means tossing out your deep fryer, instead looking to fry with minimal oil when necessary, especially steaming, stewing and simmering on very low heat your food– which helps to preserve the nutrients.

Here is one very big bonus… clean eating DOES NOT mean bland, use lots of herbs and spices – but where possible reduce all the salt and sugar content, eating as naturally as possible!!

Below is a list of all the recipes offered in the book

Hint: click on the picture and you’ll be able to see it much larger in another window.

Clean Eating Diet Recipe index

I will post again once I get more into the book and recipes above, but I’d like to share one I’ve already made, not from this book though, but that was posted on a Healthy and Clean Eating group I belong to on Facebook.

Chocolate Avocado Pudding

1 medium avocado, ripe
2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
2 Tablespoons honey for Paleo diet OR 2 Tablespoons agave nectar for vegans
6 Tablespoons almond milk (other kinds work too)
optional: pistachios or other nut for topping

Mix all together (except for the optional topping) with an immersion blender and enjoy

Mine turned out amazing, I only had normal 2% milk, and just used my fork as the avocado was quite ripe. It really did taste like chocolate pudding, and I couldn’t taste the avocado at all. My husband said he could taste it a little, but not much. I used agave nectar. Tomorrow Little Man will get to try a little as well.

PLEASE remember that if you are thinking of giving this to your baby, children under one should not have honey. Agave nectar is okay, but its actually made similar to corn syrup, though it raises blood sugar less, so you only want them to have it sparingly.

– If you find it bitter tasting, you could either add more honey or agave, or use a little less cocoa powder

*This book was sent to me free of charge to review, but the opinions stated above are my own (and much of the information taken from the book itself). I was not paid in any way to provide a positive review.